Open Source News
December 6, 2003
Federal judiciary to move to Linux
Software In Education and Research
Open source and free software - the potential for applying open source solutions to health informatics problems in education, research and practice presented by Peter Murray and Graham Wright
First release of Sodipodi flag collection
I've actually used Sodipodi (the Windows version) and it's a pretty nice basic vector drawing program. If you ever thought you needed Adobe Illustrator but could not justify the price for casual use, this may be the software for you.
Part 1. Thinking in Linux - Differences and similarities. If you are interested in Linux but aren't sure how it relates to Windows, this might be a god place to start.
Rekall - Multi-platform database management system
Rekall is a database front-end. It is not itself a database -- data is stored somewhere else, in an SQL server, and Rekall is fundamentally just a tool to extract, display and update that data (of course, it does lots more than that, it does forms and reports and scripting and so on). It is database agnostic, and does not have any preferred database in the sense that Access® uses the Jet® database engine. A GPL Version is available.
Working with Bayesian Categorizers
This article goes into a fair amount of technical detail but it's interesting reading (if you are interested in this sort of thing).
Tiki CMS/Groupware (aka TikiWiki) is a powerful open-source Content Management System (CMS) and Groupware that can be used to create all sorts of Web applications, Sites, Portals, Intranets and Extranets. I've got mixed feelings about Groupware in general but I do think it should be free.
Passepartout and Scribus
Passepartout is an Open Source Desktop Publishing application for the X Windows environment. Scribus is a Layout program for GNU/Linux, similar to Adobe PageMaker, QuarkXPress or Adobe InDesign, except that it is published under the GNU GPL (i.e. it is free). I'd like to work with one of these two packages for our school's yearbook instead of spending $800 on QuarkXPpress. Unfortunately at this point, neither is available for Windows and the folks working on the yearbook don't have Linux systems so we probably won't be able to move this way yet.
An Introductory Tour of Mozilla's XUL Hey, Mike, shall we do the next generation of eHERS/eMERS in XUL? Also, there is no data, there is only xul. In case you are wondering, this is a play on a line from the movie Ghost Busters. The girl, Dana, is posessed by a demon named Zuul. At one point she says (in a deep demon's voice), "there is no Dana, there is only Zuul."
Web Development - Editors
Bluefish is a powerful editor for experienced web designers and programmers. I've got this on my laptop and like it quite a bit. Quanta Plus is a web development tool for the K Desktop Environment. Quanta is designed for quick web development and is rapidly becoming a mature editor with a number of great features. Now that I've found Bluefish, I will probably give Quanta Plus a try, also. Stay tuned. Leo is an outlining editor for programmers. Finally, Mozedit is an advanced text editor extension for Mozilla Firebird and the Mozilla suite. It was created with web development in mind.
Scalable Vector Graphics
SVG is something I'm quite interested in and I found this article at IBM Developer Works quite helpful (requires free registration). The Mozilla SVG project is here. I've installed the SVG enabled Mozilla browser (yes, it's still a development version but quite stable for all of that. It's pretty cool. There is also an Adobe plugin available for viewing SVG files. Stop by my office sometime and see some of the cool "Flash" like things that it can do. And the files are all pure XML. This (or something like it) is likely the future for vector graphics on the web. It will allow for sophisticated script generated graphics and a level of interactivity currently only available in proprietary formats. The W3G has a site dedicated to it. There are lots of info and links here.
Here's another article on SVG at IBM Developer Works titled Interactive, Dynamic Scalable Vector Graphics. Again, you have to register for these articles but it's free and there is nothing that makes you tell the truth on your registration.
KimDaba - K Image Database
This software allows you to easily (for some broad definition of "easy") document your photographs and then to search and view them. Looks interesting. Of course, keeping all my pictures online at once is going to require a dedicated external drive array.