Google Suffocates Android Development Community

Today, Google sent a C&D to Cyanogen, the maker of one of the most popular replacement firmwares for the Android platform. His firmware is based on the official Android firmware, but provides a few new features, like direct-dial shortcuts on the home screen, more home screens (5 by default) and root access.

The root access allows tethering from a notebook computer, so I can get 3G internet on something where I can actually read most of the sites. Looks like I might have to consider another platform.

Google: nice way to show how you can use FOSS to choke off an active development community. You should update your site where it says "Do no evil" to be "Do no evil, unless it makes even more money."


ALF 2009: A Success!

Atlanta Linux Fest 2009 was a huge success! We probably had 600+ people come through the door, which is just amazing for the 2nd year of an event that was only 125 people last year! 22 successful presentations, many of which were standing room only. Planning for next year is just around the corner, so stay tuned to http://atlantalinuxfest.org.

Big thanks go out to fellow planners Nick Ali, Jim Popovitch, Joshua Chase, and Amber Graner! If any one of us had been missing, I doubt things would have worked out. Also a big thanks to the spawn of akgraner for filling in the gaps and keeping us rolling in stitches!


Bozeman, Montana uses the Constitution for Toilet Paper

The city of Bozeman, Montana has decided that all applicants for city jobs must provide them with the usernames and passwords for social networking sites, forums, and chatrooms that the applicant participates in. This fits into the category of things I think are hoaxes until I read it a few times over.

From NetworkWorld: http://www.networkworld.com/community/node/42819


SELF - Community-Based Technology Centers

This presentation discussed the benefits and future of Free IT Athens and other community-oriented technology centers.

They provide free/low-cost computers, computer training, and other technology support for underprivileged and low-income citizens in Athens. They refurbish computers to both prevent them from ending up in a landfill and to enable children and adults to gain knowledge and the benefits of the use of the Internet and computers in general.

On July 18, ALE, the Ubuntu GA Loco, and Free IT Athens will be holding a joint event to visit the Free IT Athens venue and donate equipment for refurbishment. I hope to be able to join them and help in these goals. I may, by then, have a couple of machines that could be used for this purpose, which is good for the environment and for the community.

FreeLinuxPC.org was also discussed with similar goals and ideas as Free IT Athens. FreeLinuxPC.org is also trying to build computer labs for low-income areas, some with standalone systems, and some with thin-client systems. FreeLinuxPC, in its long-term vision, wants to provide organization and information to organizations like Free IT Athens and others with similar goals.

Finally, the Gussie Greene Community Technology Center has similar goals, but has its own identity. This is a top-down approach to addressing the digital divide in South Carolina.


SELF - Vendor Booths and BoF: GPG

I missed a couple of hours of speakers, but hopefully they'll post the videos of it online. During that time, I visited the booths a bit more, and got into some interesting discussions. I found out about The Linux Link Tech Show, a weekly live podcast talking about Linux related issues. I talked with int eighty from Dual Core about their music, and his appearance on Hak.5. I also spent a bit of time talking with the Zenoss Community Manager, and I'm going to propose switching our monitoring at work from Nagios to Zenoss. It's significantly more powerful and robust, and I'm sure I'll have more to say after giving it a try. On top of all this, I talked with the guys from Free IT Athens. They refurbish computers for, and provide training to, the underprivileged citizens of Athens, GA.

I also attended a Birds of a Feather session for a GPG keysigning. Hopefully that will improve the web of trust for my key, as well as the keys of others. It's also something I'd like to organize for ALF or an ALE meeting. Having independently trusted keys strengthens both the web of trust and the usefulness of GPG.