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Interviews

Why my public library chooses Linux and open source

Filed under
Linux
Interviews
OSS

The Crawford County Federated Library System has been using Linux and open source software in its IT operations since 1999. They realized early on the potential of open source and integrated it into their enterprise. They were a part of my own Linux journey as I built a content filtering system for our school district. Twenty years ago, there were few models for the use of open source in libraries and education. Meadville Public Library and the Crawford County Federated Library System were the leaders then and now. Recently I had some questions about how to help libraries in our own library system, and I called Meadville. They referred me to Cindy Murdock Ames, their IT Director. I asked her what they were using for patron desktop computers. Cindy sent a brief email that piqued my interest, and I asked her if she would agree to an email interview. She graciously accepted.

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A conversation about open source design and ethical funding

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Interviews
OSS

Penpot does exist because at some point—six or seven years ago—Kaleidos was a very developer-centric company and didn't have UX or UI in-house. We saw the potential for multi-functional teams where you would have design—UX/UI design, in general—and code working together, but we needed to use open source because that's our ethos. Kaleidos would use open source as an end in itself but also as a means to an end.

We started by creating Taiga, which is a project management platform. We're all about processes and how to do stuff, not just what, but how we achieve things and team management and all that. We were happy to have that agile mindset built in a tool for teams like ourselves. But as you can imagine, at some point, designers at Kaleidos, being open source proponents, said: Look, we are not first-class citizens in open source. We are happy with Inkscape, GIMP, and some tools, but you developers have everything to choose from. You can choose the best of the best. You live in this paradise world where you don't know how privileged you are. We agree with you. We are all about open source, absolutely, but you have to understand that we are frustrated with the professional quality of some tools. We want to achieve parity with you developers.

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Stuart D Gathman: How do you Fedora?

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Red Hat
Interviews

For 35 years, Stuart worked as a System programmer for a small company where his projects included database servers, device drivers, protocol stacks, expert systems, accounting systems, aged AR/AP reports, and EDI. Currently, he is doing hourly consulting work for small businesses.

Stuart’s childhood heroes were his Dad and George Müller. His favorite movies are “The Gods must be crazy” and “The mission”. He grew up in a pacifist denomination, so feels “The mission” movie is very relevant to him. He loves over roasted vegetables.

Composing and performing music, Mesh networking, and refurbishing discarded computers to run Fedora Linux are some of his spare time interests as well as history, especially ancient Western and 19th century English/American.

“Love/charity, Hope, Faith, Virtue, and knowledge” are the five qualities someone should possess, according to Stuart.

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Also: Fedora Community Blog: Contribute at Fedora Linux 35 GNOME 41 Test Day

Steam Deck: “The start of a golden age for Linux Gaming”

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Interviews
Gaming

After the release of the podcast released with James Ramey from Codeweavers a few days ago where we talked at length about the Steam Deck, here is full transcript as promised! Have a good read, you will learn quite a few things.

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Zorin OS 16 Pro

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Interviews
  • Zorin OS 16 Pro arrives complete with optional 'Windows 11' desktop

    Zorin Pro 16 will be released next week, along with a free Lite edition, complete with an optional "Windows 11" desktop theme.

    Zorin OS is one of a few commercial Linux distributions which aim to be user-friendly alternatives to Windows and Mac. The OS is open source and pricing is based on a freemium model, with free Core, Lite and Education editions, and a paid for Pro edition (formerly called Ultimate).

    The Pro edition adds "premium desktop layouts," based on macOS, Gnome and Ubuntu, whereas the other editions are Windows-like. The Pro edition also includes additional business and media applications, games, and perhaps more significantly, Zorin installation support.

    Aware that users can install what they like even on the free editions, Zorin has a "why pay" article that pitches the payment as a means of supporting the project. The new Pro edition will cost the same as Ultimate, £39 plus VAT, and will be available from 17 August.

  • Zorin OS 16 Pro brings Microsoft's Windows 11 interface to Linux

    Windows 11 looks quite beautiful, but let's be honest... it is pretty much just Windows 10 with a fresh coat of paint. Sadly, Microsoft is requiring some pretty strict hardware requirements for the upcoming operating system, meaning many people could find themselves unable to upgrade. Even worse, the company has provided confusing communications regarding TPM requirements.

    Thankfully, even if Microsoft thinks your perfectly fine computer is obsolete, the Linux community doesn't think that. In other words, if your computer is incompatible with Windows 11 due to a lack of a TPM chip or other hardware issue, it can still run a modern Linux distro just fine. In fact, thanks to the upcoming Zorin OS 16 Pro, you can experience the all-new Windows 11 interface on Linux! Wow!

A conversation with Petteri Kivimäki on X-Road

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Interviews

X-Road is a decentralised data-exchange layer that provides a secure and unified way to exchange data between organisations. X-Road is published as open source under the MIT licence, so it is free for any individual or organisation. Originally, X-Road was developed in Estonia twenty years ago, in December this year it will be its 20th birthday. Since then, X-Road has spread all over the world. In Europe, Estonia, Finland and Iceland are using X-Road, whereas outside of Europe we have 20 additional countries using it. Currently, X-Road has been deployed in South America (e.g. Brazil, Mexico, Argentina) as well as in Asia (e.g. Vietnam, Japan, Cambodia). During the last 20 years X-Road has really grown from an Estonian solution to a truly international open source solution and open source community.

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lfs – list your filesystems

Filed under
Software
Interviews

The Command Line Interface (CLI) is a way of interacting with your computer. To harness all the power of Linux, it’s highly recommended mastering the interface. It’s true the CLI is often perceived as a barrier for users migrating to Linux, particularly if they’re grown up using GUI software exclusively. While Linux rarely forces anyone to use the CLI, some tasks are better suited to this method of interaction, offering inducements like superior scripting opportunities, remote access, and being far more frugal with a computer’s resources.

The part of the operating system responsible for managing files and directories is called the file system. It organizes our data into files, which hold information, and directories (also called ‘folders’), which hold files or other directories. We cover the basics of the file system in Linux for Starters – Part 12.

lfs is billed as a better df, a standard Unix command used to display the amount of available disk space for file systems on which the invoking user has appropriate read access.

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Community Member Monday: Jackson Cavalcanti Junior

Filed under
LibO
Interviews

I am Brazilian, from the city of Olinda, Pernambuco. I am 62 years old, and work as a public servant in the municipality of Olinda. I am one of the creators of the Municipal Public Archive of Olinda. I am also a human rights activist, especially for LGBT people. I am a proofreader and I also write for my blog.

In my work, in the city of Olinda, since 2001 I have been working with free office software, having started with OpenOffice.org, then with BrOffice and LibreOffice Writer, with which I created several models of documents to be used by the agencies that are part of the administrative structure of the Municipality of Olinda. These models remained on the City Hall’s intranet until 2016, when in that year’s elections another political party was elected, and that project was discontinued.

As a citizen, I am an activist in the LGBT movement, in which I have worked since 1980, when I helped found the Homosexual Action Group (GATHO), which was the first group in Pernambuco to fight in defense of citizenship for homosexual people. This group no longer exists, but I am a member of the LGBT Forum of Pernambuco, where I work as an independent activist, to which I was invited by my history as an activist for the LGBT cause in the state where I reside.

I also advertise LibreOffice among my friends, in the institutions where I work, and also in the WhatsApp and Telegram groups.

I like to photograph my city, my animals and nature.

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Community Member Monday: Tim Brennan Jr.

Filed under
LibO
Interviews

I am a son and grandson of American missionaries who moved to Brazil in 1952. Since my mother was born here (my father was a seven month old baby), I was born automatically a Brazilian citizen – even though I was born in the USA. Being brought up in Brazil, I learned both American English in the home, and learned Brazilian Portuguese in parallel. I am fluent in both languages. Computers came into my life as my dad saw the importance and value of them in the eighties. Watching him hack an Apple IIe and a daisy wheel printer to get the tilde accent over the letter “y” was an adventure in and of itself.

Since I was homeschooled, the value and importance of open source software became very clear to me as soon as I heard about it around 1999. As soon as I heard of Linux, I got hooked. Then, I heard of StarOffice which later became OpenOffice, which forked into LibreOffice and saw the birth of The Document Foundation.

I have been on a learning journey for most of my life. Everything I have learned is self-taught, including LibreOffice. My main activity in life is teaching in general. Teaching software to newbies such as the elderly, the underprivileged and young people is a passion I have. LibreOffice is an excellent starting point as it has virtually all the basic areas: text, images, markup languages, programming logic on a very simple scale with macros, databases etc., and much, much, more.

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How a college student founded a free and open source operating system

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Interviews
OSS

I think even a beginner can get started writing an operating system like FreeDOS, although it would take a more advanced programmer to write the kernel.

I am a self-taught programmer. I learned about programming from an early age by tinkering on our Apple II computer at home. Much later, I learned C programming—my brother was a computer science student when I was a physics student, and he introduced me to C. I picked up the rest by reading books and writing my own programs.

I wrote a lot of small utilities that enhanced my command line on MS-DOS or even replaced certain DOS commands. And you can write a lot of those programs even with a basic level of programming experience. You can write file utilities like FIND, FC, CHOICE, TYPE, MORE, or COPY—or user commands like ECHO or CLS—with only an introduction to C programming. With a bit of practice, you can write system-level programs like ATTRIB, or the COMMAND shell.

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