Dot Rose

Open Source News

April 15, 2004

Arrests key win for NSA hackers reports on an e-mail message intercepted by NSA spies precipitated a massive investigation by intelligence officials in several countries that culminated in the arrest of nine men in Britain and one in suburban Orleans, Ontario. Dave Farber, an Internet pioneer and computer-science professor at Carnegie-Mellon University in Pittsburgh, said the circumstances are also notable because it will be the first time that routine U.S. monitoring of e-mail traffic has led to an arrest.

Husband flies with wife's passport

The BBC reports a "businessman who accidentally flew to Italy and back using his wife's passport has said he is amazed he was able to pass through airport security.

Using Google as an Aid to Hacking

Here's a web page with information on how Google can be used to find interesting and useful information about vulnerable web sites. For instance, see what a Google search for "filetype:htpasswd htpasswd" will turn up. And what do you think "intitle:Index.of etc shadow" will find?

Planning for Disaster Recovery on LAMP Systems

Robert Jones writes about disaster recovery issues and LAMP systems on O'Reilly. "The beauty of LAMP systems is that you can develop them as formally or informally as you like. Unfortunately, when it comes time to plan for disaster recovery, that informality can work against you. Robert Jones presents several guidelines for development and configuration that can make recovery easier."

mnoGoSearch 3.2.16 search engine released

Version 3.2.16 of the mnoGoSearch web site search engine has been released. The changes include improved operation on non-English language sites, bug fixes, and performance improvements.

Inkscape 0.38(.1) Released

Version 0.38 of Inkscape, a cross-platform SVG-based graphics editor, has been released. "In addition to a slew of new features, we've analyzed and closed over 130 bug reports for this release. Improvements have been made to text, fonts, paths, gradients, usability, and much more." Version 0.38.1 was also announced and features bug fixes and a few new features.

GIMP Animation Package version 2.0.0 Released

Version 2.0.0 of the GIMP Animation Package, a set of plugins for the purpose of creating animations, has been released. "There are a couple of new features including a new bluebox plug-in, onion skinning and a video preview."

Alexandria 0.1.0 released

Version 0.1.0 of Alexandria, a GNOME application for managing book collections, is out. This is the first public release. Version 0.1.1 of Alexandria was released later in the week, it fixes a bug that is caused by a missing directory.

SVG and Typography

Fabio Arciniegas A. writes about typography under Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG) on O'Reilly. "Mixing the worlds of documents, programming, and visual design is a familiar experience for XML developers, especially when dealing with presentation technologies like SVG. Such mixtures can produce exciting new representations of information. They can also become ugly messes if one fails to learn the relevant aesthetic and design principles."

How open source is getting nonprofits out of a squeeze

NewsForge takes a look at efforts across the US to recycle old computers and supply families, schools, and nonprofits with IT connectivity. "[Collaborative Technologies coordinator Ron] Braithwaite said the open source model is proving its worth as his group looks to tailor the solution to the different community resource organizations. "Open source isn't just about software, it's about a way of working together collaboratively," Braithwaite said. "All of a sudden, we can leverage the work we've done. Because we've templated the hell out of it, we can tune it and enable and disable [portions] to specifically serve community mental health programs quickly and easily.""

Commentary: An open-source plan

Should you know any CIO types looking for guidance on how to use free software, has run a column from Forrester Research to help them out. "Arm your open-source advisory group with the funnel and decision tools. Fund a multidisciplinary team comprised of developers, managers, lawyers and procurement specialists to evaluate the risks of an open-source component and community. Quantitative assessment tools can help companies make informed decisions about the health of the community and the quality of the commercial support."

Optical Data Linking with Ronja

The OpenCollector site lists a new release of the Ronja Twister interface design from the Ronja Project. "Ronja connects two PC's point-to-point, using a common red-orange visible light from a car brake light LED. The design is simple, building is easy and complete from-scratch building guide is online. Suitable for anybody who wants to communicate entirely freely in a direct line of sight. Building is cheap and requires only common tools available in home workshop. Communicates 10Mbit/sec. full duplex over 1.4km."

Complete Text 'Rapid Application Development with Mozilla' Available

A free, downloadable PDF version of the book Rapid Application Development with Mozilla has been announced. "Wily Yuen writes: "Nigel McFarlane's Rapid Application Development with Mozilla is now available as a PDF download from Bruce Perens' Open Source series at InformIT. Please support the author and buy the book if you find it to be useful." Displaying a keen sense of irony, InformIT have ensured that their download page does not work in Mozilla."