Now showing: opensource.com

Hi. We’re back. Well, not back exactly. We’d just like to take a minute to introduce you to somebody. Somebody that’s important to us.

opensource.com

We promised we’d let you know when we had news–and now we do. Opensource.com is our new adventure. It’s still sponsored by Red Hat, and still shining a bright light on the open source stories we’ve always sought out.

At opensource.com, we’ll be doing some things a little differently than we used to. We won’t be addressing as many technical topics–but we do hope to address more topics more often. We welcome contributions in the areas of Business, Law, Education, Government, and Life. We welcome new (and old) contributors.

You can bookmark us, or add us to your RSS feed reader. Register with the site and you can post and track comments, give a bit of a biography, and network with other contributors.

Like it? Share it. Help us spread the word through identi.ca, facebook, or twitter.

And for those of you that were fond of our video contributions? Never fear. Our crack video team is fully involved.

So give it a click. Check out the articles. Sure, it’s not the same comfy digs you’d gotten used to, but pretty soon, it’ll feel just as homey. And that’s where we’ll be, for the next while.

Red Hat Magazine enjoyed a fantastic run. It’s launched careers, ideas, and helped publish–and promote–writers we dearly know and love. It gave us experience–and information–we can take to this newer, bigger venture. And now we’ve got a new venue–and a new name–to keep doing the kind of work we love. That kind of work and more.

One thing that has changed and–we think–for the better: It’s not just Red Hat’s magazine anymore. Opensource.com belongs to everyone. It’s a conversation-starter, a place for debate, and we hope you’ll come be a part of it.

And thank you. For subscribing, for contributing, and for reading–at RHM and beyond.


Where have we been?

It seems we’ve been a bit out of touch. Rather than bore you with excuses, let’s cut to the chase. Over the last year, we’ve slowed down—and then stopped altogether—publishing articles in Red Hat Magazine. And some of you have been contacting us to ask why.

There’s really a couple of reasons.

First of all, we’ve been running Red Hat Magazine a long time—under the RHM banner since November 2004. Before that we were a monthly newsletter called Under the Brim.

Point is, things change. We were once a text-only, link-heavy monthly email. Back then, we didn’t write very much original content—well, except for Shadowman. He (and his third-person narrative) have been around a while. He’s seen us publish through email, on the web—we even tried an issue in print. In the last few years, we dipped our toes into the online daily news space with both excitement and apprehension. We launched videos. We recorded podcasts. Some stuff we kept; some stuff we moved aside.

And now it’s time for another change.

We’re sorry we didn’t get around to telling you earlier. But, truth is, we weren’t quite sure what we were doing next. Some planets had to align. Some realities had to be faced. And there’s still a lot of work to be done. But we didn’t want to leave you hanging any longer.

We haven’t forgotten you. We’ve been hard at work figuring out just where we go from here. The content we have is too good to leave languishing in a corner. Our writers are too talented to not see the light of day. We’re working on delivering the open source message in a different way. There will be more info soon, and you’ll be among the first to know.

In the meantime, enjoy our archives. We’ll keep them here for now. Watch the email list for announcements. It’s been a long, strange, and wonderful trip. And it’s not over yet.

Red Hat Magazine


Video: Open source government

Download this video: [Ogg Theora]

Open source is answering the call at government agencies on all levels as they look for opportunities to carve out costs and improve security, transparency, public participation, and collaboration. Why? Open source is stable, trustworthy, and secure, and Red Hat solutions are being used across government agencies to create efficiencies, eliminate vendor lock-in, meet mission-critical IT demands, and improve service delivery.


Call for submissions: Innovation Awards and RHCE of the Year

It’s that time of year again–the Red Hat Summit and JBoss World are fast approaching, and with them, Red Hat’s annual awards ceremonies. But first, we need nominations. And for that we appeal to our customers, readers, partners, and friends. That’s you.

Nominate that innovative business you worked with, or the admin who always has the right answers. Winners will receive free admission to Red Hat Summit and JBoss World, participation in exclusive events, and the admiration and accolades of their peers. Here’s the details:

2009 Innovation Awards – Nominations Open

Nominations are now open for the 2009 Innovation Awards, to be presented at this year’s co-located Red Hat Summit and JBoss World on September 1-4, 2009 in Chicago. » Read more


Red Hat and Intel: Smart processors, virtualization boost efficiency and performance

On Monday March 30, Intel announced the availability of their much anticipated new line of processors, the Intel® Xeon® Processor 5500 series–nicknamed Nehalem.

Red Hat, a long-time partner of the market-leading chip maker , collaborated on the chip’s debut, testing and optimizing the recently released Red Hat® Enterprise Linux® 5.3 on the new processor.

Changes include a new processor architecture, platform architecture, memory subsystem, I/O subsystem, and options (including SSD and 10GbE).

So what’s the big deal? Why all the fuss? Here’s just a few of the improvements wrought by the combination of Intel’s processing power and Red Hat advancements in performance and efficiency. » Read more


Writing simple python setup commands

Building software in most languages is a pain. Remember ant build.xml, maven2 pom files, and multi-level makefiles?

Python has a simple solution for building modules, applications, and extensions called distutils. Disutils comes as part of the Python distribution so there are no other packages required.

Pull down just about any python source code and you’re more than likely going to find a setup.py script that helps make building and installing a snap. Most engineers don’t add functionality when using distutils, instead opting to use the default commands.

In some cases, developers might provide secondary scripts to do other tasks for building and testing outside of the setup script, but I believe that can lead to unnecessary complication of common tasks. » Read more


Video: Spotlight on My Fedora

Download this video: [Ogg Theora]

John “J5″ Palmieri explains how the Fedora community–codename MyFedora–is bringing Fedora users together by integrating self-contained applications into a single framework application. This interface enables Fedora users to see and keep track of what applications other community members are working with.


Happy Document Freedom Day

Document Freedom Day (DFD) is a global grassroots effort  to promote and build awareness of the importance of free document formats in particular and open standards in general.  If you have ever received a document from a friend that your software could not open, then you know the frustration of proprietary formats.  Document Freedom Day promotes open formats so that users can freely exchange their data no matter what software program they choose to use. Complete interoperability is the ultimate goal of those who support open standards.

And it’s not just a matter of convenience. Public documents stored on closed, proprietary formats require citizens to pay twice to access information that already belongs to them, once for the document creation, and again to access them.  There is also the danger of losing the information stored in those formats should the vendors go out of business, or decide that they no longer want to maintain that technology. Proponents of open document formats believe all public information should be stored using open standards accessible to all.

Melanie Chernoff, Red Hat’s Public Policy Manager explains that “Red Hat is committed to open source, open standards and open content. Document Freedom Day is an opportunity to single out  one of these important areas, open standards. DFD promotes open standards in the document space, which is where the average user really feels the impact of proprietary formats.

“We view Document Freedom Day as a great vehicle for highlighting the importance of standards to interoperability and user choice, which reflect Red Hat’s core values. “

Document Freedom Day is supported by a large group of organizations and individuals, including, but not limited to ANSOL, Ars Aperta, BrOffice.org, COSS, Esoma, Estándares Abiertos, FFII, Free Knowledge Foundation, Free Software Foundation, Free Software Foundation Europe, Free Software Foundation Latin America, Funambol, Google, IBM, NLnet, ODF Alliance, Open Forum Europe, Open Source Initiative (OSI), Opentia, OSL, iMatix, Red Hat, Sun, The Open Learning Centre.

The list of DFD Teams is available at: http://documentfreedom.org/Category:Teams


Video: The seeds of open source

Download this video: [Ogg Theora]
Video by Islam Elsedoudi, Kim Jokisch, and Tim Kiernan.

Sometimes open source ideals make for the strangest–and most wonderful–bedfellows. We met Dr. Vandana Shiva–physicist, scientist, environmentalist, and activist–several years ago. Her work saving seeds and protecting traditional knowledge in the farming industry parallels the openness, transparency, collaboration and freedom of open source ideology. Her simple, clear explanation of why knowledge should be shared–and the devastating results should it be hoarded–is part of the essential truth that makes the work we do so incredibly important. But don’t take our word for it.

Get more information about Dr. Shiva’s work.


Risk report: Four years of Red Hat Enterprise Linux 4

Red Hat® Enterprise Linux® 4 was released on February 15th, 2005. This report takes a look at the state of security for the first four years from release. We look at key metrics, specific vulnerabilities, and the most common ways users were affected by security issues. We will show some best practices that could have been used to minimise the impact of the issues, and also take a look at how the included security innovations helped.

This report is an update to the three-year risk report published in Red Hat Magazine in February 2007.

» Read more