Top Stories by Mark R. Hinkle
Last Monday at the Desktop Linux Consortium Conference at Boston
University’s Tyngsboro, Massachusetts Campus there was a lot of talk about
a “UserLinux” distribution. The topic was sparked by remarks by Bruce
Perens who voiced a need for a distribution that was designed to meet
community needs for a desktop operating system based on the Linux community
favorite Debian distribution.
I contacted Bruce who has been kind enough to interject some comments to my
own text. They are marked [thus].
The thought of UserLinux sparked my thinking. The thing I like about Linux is
that it’s infinitely customizable to meet the needs of almost any
situation. However, for it to be a viable desktop for the masses there seems
to me that there has to be some common features that a large number of Linux
desktop users would appreciate. I thought about this quite a bit and started
my li... (more)
I recently read an article in the "mainstream" media that gave me pause. The
author made an assertion that the current trend towards Open Source might
just be a passing fad. I thought about this and looked critically at the
software industry, thinking about whether there was merit in that statement.
After all, we have seen plenty of high flyers peter out in a software
industry riddled with buzzwords and acronyms-of-the-day. I just don't believe
that open source is one of them.
When I worked in the Internet Service Provider (ISP) business, we saw every
new consumer Internet fad f... (more)
Tulane University is home to the Center for Computational Science (CCS), a
unique facility designed to provide computational resources for research
projects across many disciplines. The Center provides an infrastructure for
investigators interested in computational science to exchange ideas, produce
research, and establish new collaborations.
One of these collaborative efforts involves a team of researchers performing
computational simulations of multi-scale models in biological systems. This
research is funded through individual research grants from the National
The Software Freedom Conservancy has a plan to help all non-profit
organizations (NPOs) by creating an Open Source and Free Software accounting
system usable by non-technical bookkeepers, accountants, and non-profit
managers. You can help them do it by donating now.
To keep their books and produce annual government filings, most NPOs rely on
proprietary software, paying expensive licensing fees. This is fundamentally
at cross purposes with their underlying missions of charity, equality,
democracy, and sharing.
You can help Conservancy fix this problem by donating now. They seek t... (more)
Mark R. Hinkle: "Linux is ready for the desktop"
In my view, Linux on the desktop is a viable operating system.
It offers many features that are more innovative than commercial solutions.
Virtual consoles, secure remote access solutions, true multi-tasking, and the
ability to use robust journaling file systems all come to mind. Despite these
advanced features, I have also noticed some parallels between Linux and some
earlier versions of Windows. Let’s term these similarities as “growing
I do feel that there are many cases today where Linux is an inadequate
solution, speci... (more)