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How to set up a free and open source environment on your computer

free and open source software on your computer

Previously, I provided several options for organisations wanting to update their current Windows XP environment to a free and open source (FOSS) environment rather than a more recent Microsoft platform when Microsoft officially abandons its venerable Windows XP in April 2014.


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Your opinion counts! Take the FLOSS 2013 survey

free open source software survey 2013

In 2002, the GSyC/LibreSoft research group at the Universidad Rey Juan Carlos successfully surveyed a broad swath of over 2500 respondents (mostly developers) from open source and free software communities. They have long been researching and collaborating with Free and Libre Open Source Software (FLOSS or FOSS) organizations and groups and are back again to recreate the survey with the goal of assessing where the community stands today after over ten years of evolution and innovation.

This year, the Libresoft research group encourages anyone involved in a FLOSS project (not only developers) to participate in the survey. » Read more

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choosealicense.com and GitHub's license picker

choose an open source license

In a previous article, I discussed the complaints that have been leveled against GitHub during the past year and a half concerning the purported problem of public, seemingly-FLOSS code repositories with no explicit licensing. Here I will address the actions GitHub took in July, which were undoubtedly in response to this criticism.

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5 Questions with David A. Wheeler

5 Questions

Meet David A. Wheeler. He's a Research Staff Member for the Institute for Defense Analyses (IDA) and a well-known speaker, author, and expert on open source software and security. He helped develop the Department of Defense's open source software policy and FAQ and has written other guidance materials to help people understand how to use and collaboratively develop open source software in government. He has a Ph.D. in Information Technology, an M.S. in Computer Science, and a B.S. in Electronics Engineering. We hope you enjoy getting to know David. » Read more

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Booktype makes book collaboration web-based and simple

Booktype makes book collaboration web-based and simple

If you've ever tried to collaborate with other authors and editors and the many other people who work to make a book successful, you know it's not easy. Even if your experience stops at trying to incorporate three comments with changes tracked in word processing software, you get the idea. Last week at the O'Reilly Tools of Change conference, a new platform called Booktype was announced. It was created to help you collaborate on editing content and getting it ready for publishing. » Read more

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Community spotlight: 5 questions with John Scott, founder of MIL-OSS and Open Source for America

Community spotlight: 5 questions with John Scott, military software development

Meet John Scott. He is a systems engineer in Alexandria, Virginia. Scott has worked extensively on open source software policy for the US government and military--and helped found MIL-OSS and Open Source for America.

On opensource.com, community is very important. We want to continue to recognize our community members who contribute in ways other than writing articles--things like rating and commenting, voting in polls, and sharing our collective work on social media. We hope you enjoy getting to know John. » Read more

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The first FOSDEM Legal Issues DevRoom

The first FOSDEM Legal Issues DevRoom

For FOSDEM 2012, held last weekend in Brussels, I had the privilege of co-organizing (with Tom Marble, Karen Sandler, and Bradley Kuhn) the first-ever DevRoom track devoted to discussion of legal issues relating to free/libre/open source software. With several thousand attendees and hundreds of sessions, FOSDEM is one of the largest FLOSS conferences in the world, and surely the largest in Europe. This makes it all the more remarkable that FOSDEM is a free-admission, non-commercial community event, organized and administered entirely by volunteers.

The idea of a Legal DevRoom being untested, FOSDEM's organizers gave us a single day and a relatively small room. Our basic goal was to » Read more

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Community spotlight: Scott Nesbitt, contributor to FLOSS manuals

Community spotlight: Scott Nesbitt, contributor to FLOSS manuals

Meet Scott Nesbitt. He's a freelance writer and consultant in Toronto, Canada. He uses open source tools for more than 85 percent of the work he does. He's idealistic about more getting more open data from our governments. Nesbitt also contributes to FLOSS Manuals (FLOSS stands for Free/Libre open source software) by helping to document open source projects. Documentation for the win!

On opensource.com, community is very important. We want to continue to recognize our community members who contribute in ways other than writing articles--things like rating and commenting, voting in polls, and sharing our collective work on social media. We hope you enjoy getting to know Scott. » Read more

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Lessons learned from Groklaw: The power of collaboration

Like many, I was surprised-but-not-really when Pamela Jones announced that she would be retiring original content on the legal analysis site that grew to fame within and without the open source community as it rose to do battle with the incredibly audacious claims by The SCO Group that Linux was directly derived from UNIX. » Read more

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Tech@State: Oh, the places we STILL need to go...

The fact that the State Department hosted a conference last week on open source shows how far the U.S. Federal Government has come in terms of tech policy. Yet the content at Tech@State: Open Source often illustrated that the road ahead is still long and arduous. » Read more

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