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March 2008 Archives

WordPress 2.5 Review

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I have been blogging for many years. During that time I have used many other platforms including hosted software from BlogCity. TypePad, and Blogger. I also used Moveable Type briefly and a highly customized version of Joomla! (before that MamboCMS). Last fall I switched to WordPress as my primary blog platform. Though I haven't been bowled over by WordPress I have come to the conclusion that it is the best blogging platform for me because it's easy-to-use, has the widest variety of features, extensible, and it's open source (with a thriving community of developers--over 90 developers were credited with contributing to this release).


This week's Open Source Business Conference was a strange meeting of Enterprise IT users, venture capitalists, and free software entrepreneurs. The opening keynote was delivered by Red Hat's freshly minted CEO Jim Whitehurst who gave a very modest speech noting that while Red Hat has been a leading open source company they have not necessarily been an open source leader.

This was an interesting article by Nick Carr that popped up in Google Reader today--it's about the Bebo acquisition by AOL and how the founders have been rewarded handsomely, to the tune of $800 million, with diddly squat going to the artists who contributed site content.

XO Sightings

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It seems that the One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) program's XO laptop is just popping up all over lately. Twice in as many weeks, mention of the green and white laptop has appeared in the most unusual places.

The methodologies of Open Source are not owned or guided by any one person. The closest thing we have are the Open Source Initiative (OSI) and support of the Free Software Foundation (FSF). The OSI certifies what qualifies as an open source license. They have as of late also been adding the TM to the Open Source logo which is the equivalent of the Good Housekeeping seal of approval for open source software. While the Free Software Foundation maintains the Free Software Definition--to show clearly what must be true about a particular software program for it to be considered free software.


Lately it seems that there are two major directions in open source software development: match proprietary software feature-for-feature, with some additional features thrown in for the extra cool factor. Or, someone develops code that simplifies and streamlines product features to make complicated software more accessible.

Day 10,274 of misunderstood musings on Open Source. Dan Lyons talks about Open Source being in "an identity crisis" likening it to some punk band from the 70's that's now playing stadiums and losing touch with its original ethos. This is wrong on many, many levels.


Mandrake Linux Founder now Ulteo Chairman and CTO Gaël Duval today announced a new beta release of the Ulteo Online Desktop a hosted desktop solution built from open source technology.

About three months ago I was looking for a wiki for a private project and used WikiMatrix to figure out what wiki software best met my needs. My main requirements were that the software was open source, easy-to-use, and there was a free hosted version to play around with. Unfortunately, there were a lot of choices that met these criteria so I slogged through a bunch of options with little luck and even some that fell outside my criteria. After a pretty exhaustive search I came upon Deki Wiki an open source Wiki platform by MindTouch. The bonus came when I found the free hosted version of Deki Wiki at Wik.is.


If you are a social media hound you probably have a Flickr Uploader, a web browser chock full of extensions, maybe a Twitter client like Twhirl, and a slew of other tools for interacting on the web. Maybe it's time to consolidate all these tools into your web browser. That's where Flock comes in it's a web browser for the collaborative web.


At a recent SDForum event, I was doing my usual schtick about communities, when I happened to mention one of my recent thoughts: that Google's Open Source Program Office kicks major ass.


If you're going to be crazy, you have to get paid for it or else you're going to be locked up.

Hunter S. Thompson

Drupal recently made a deal with the devils (venture capitalists) by virtue of the a $7 million investment in Acquia. Acquia owns the Drupal brand (or at least legally they do). Drupal lead (and Acquia co-founder) Dries Buytaert and the fine people at Acquia along with their backers are now at the crossroads faced by every vendor who sells free software... How do they supply a return on their investment without recommitting the sins of their proprietary software brethren or alienating the community that so far has driven their success.