Tag Archives | foss

CentraLUG, 6-Dec-2010, David Berube, MySQL Operations

The December meeting of the Central NH Linux User Group will be held as usual in Room 146 of the NHTI Library – details and directions can be found at http://www.centralug.org – and will feature David Berube presenting “Real World Experience with Large MySQL Deployments”

David recently attend the Percona Operations Day training covering real world howto’s on big MySQL deployments and will share what he’s learned.

About David: David is a principal at Berube Consulting. David Berube is a software developer, consultant, speaker, and writer. He is constantly researching, perfecting, and practicing his trade. He is a prolific writer, appearing in places such as Dr Dobbs Journal, Linux Magazine, IBM DeveloperWorks, PHP International Magazine, and many others. He speaks frequently, notably including his seminar series, “Making Money Using Open Source Software”. He authored the books “Practical Rails Gems” and “Practical Reporting with Ruby and Rails”, and co-authored the book “Practical Rails Plugins.” He is also a leader in the Open Source community. He was involved with the AmphetaDesk project, developing much of its Win32 GUI code.

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Notes from ManchLUG, 28-Sept-2010, maddog, Project Cauã

Eighteen people attended the second ManchLUG (wiki, twitter) meeting, held at “Wings Your Way” on Elm Street in Manchester. Early attendees to the meeting enjoyed good food, beverages and camaraderie.

It’s never easy to summarize a maddog presentation :). Maddog had a lot of interesting materials to cover, and provided a lot of depth and background to his main thesis. Briefly, Project Cauã is based in Brazil as the center of its first pilot and rollout, but intends to be worldwide. There’s a strong ethos of openness and transparency in hopes the project will be duplicated elsewhere. It is an effort to distribute computing power and internet connectivity to as many people as possible as cheaply as possibly, but using the power of capitalism and business to drive the project, rather than some completely free charitable model that would be trying to fight the entrenched interests. There seemed to be an emphasis on sustainability, both for the project and the world, and the principles of Open Software.

The infrastructure would consist of very-low-power (10-12 watts) mini-machines, a small fanless thin-client box with USB3 and gigabit ethernet connectivity, wired into large servers centralized in neighborhoods or apartment building basements. The machines would be manufactured as greenly as possible and built for long term service (6-10 years). Small businesses would be established and trained (cheaply over the internet and/or with DVDs) to service the machines. The thin clients would rent/lease for a target price of $6/month. To avoid vendor lockin or obsolescence, the thin client design would be open, designed by the University of São Paulo and distributed/licensed freely to the many SMT (Surface Mount Technology) assembly facilities available within Brazil (import duties of 100% on finished goods, versus a 6% surcharge on raw components, means that in-country assembly is economically feasible, driving local employment). The project intends to use the network to provide free metro-wide Wifi. Some vendors have expressed an interest in providing free internet band width in exchange for idle CPU power. There’s lots more to the project of course: finding the proper motivations to financial institutions to provide the seed money the many small startups will need, certifying and bonding the local computer experts, designing and integrating the hardware, software, networking, etc., but maddog only had a little over an hour to present. More can be learned at http://www.projectcaua.org and maddog promised he’d be further updating the site soon.

Thanks to maddog for the presentation, to Kenta Koga and Chip Marshall for coordinating the meeting, to Wings Your Way for the facilities and good food, and to all for attending and participating!

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Notes for CentraLUG, 7-June-2010: Wikis

The topic of the month is Wikis. “Wiki Wiki!” is Hawaiian for “quick, quick!” and is a pattern of presenting a read-write web site. There are more variations and implementations than grains of sand in the universe. but we’ll look at a couple of them, specifically:

We’ll talk a little bit about the range of markup languages, the technology behind the wiki, the social and community aspects of how a wiki works (or doesn’t), and how Free/Open Source has played into the success of wikis.

Recommended Reading: “The Wiki Way, Quick Collaboration on the Web” by Ward Cunningham (inventor of the wiki) and Bo Leuf, Addison-Wesley, 2001, ISBN 0-201-71499-X and http://wiki.org/. We’ll have a copy there for your browsing.

Comments from other members suggest we might also want to look at:

MindTouch (http://sourceforge.net/projects/dekiwiki/)

Wekkid https://launchpad.net/wikkid

Wikipedia’s entry on Wikis: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wiki_software and

a list of software with comparisons: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison_of_wikis

and http://www.wikimatrix.org/

My most active Wiki experience: http://fox.wikis.com (Not open source, either in implementations nor base language).

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Tonight, MonadLUG (new location): Tim Wessels, Kablink

If it’s Thursday, it’s LUG-Day. Tonight: Tim Wessels demos Kablink open collaboration at MonadLUG: http://mail.gnhlug.org/pipermail/gnhlug-announce/2009-May/000709.html – note unusual location.

Kablink looks promising: a synchronizing folder feature, document management, and conferencing software. It appears to be (or have been) the Open Source version of Novell’s SiteScape, at least a portion of which came from the 2008 acquisition of SiteScape, Inc., a company that traces its roots back to Clock Tower Place in Maynard, Massachusetts and the Alta Vista folks.

Looking forward to the presentation!

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Notes from DLSLUG, 2-April-2009: Nifties!

“Nifties!” are the name for the Dartmouth-Lake Sunapee Linux User Group meeting nights when a featured speaker can’t be found: the Users of the Group make short presentations to each other, hopefully eliciting the “Nifty!” response.

I spoke on my work with Nick Plante and Brian Turnbull starting a business to host a coworking site in Portsmouth, NH with several of the folks there before the meeting started. We had some insightful discussions on the terminology of commercial space leasing, and the intricacies and politics of finding the right spot to start a business.

Rich Brown of Dartware talked about Dojo, the javascript library, and a book he borrowed from the DLSLUG library. (see below for more)

Lloyd Kvam presented his book report on the Google Apps books. Google Apps allows a small business or group to buy a domain, register it with Google Apps. We shared experiences of setting up domains in Google Apps.

Then we realized the meeting was actually next door in L02 rather than L01, not the first time we’ve gotten the wrong room, so we moved over and caught the end of a presentation. Then Bill McGonigle showed how ejabberd was set up with Red Hat – family user accounts (Pluggable Authentication Module – PAM) to which he contributed some code.

Richard Brittain (http://www.dartmouth.edu/~richard) showed a ksh script to kill a subprocess after a specified timout and another script that would check a path (checkpath.ksh) and remove all the cruft that builds up as software is added and removed, machines appear and disappear, etc.

Rich Brown of Dartware presented his Dojo report again. Rich needed a simple web page that would let his clients enter in several key pieces of information in a form and from that data generate a configuration file in a specific format. Eventually, he realized a prebuilt library of JavaScript could do a better job, he worked with Dojo and realized he needed a reference. He borrowed the Dojo book from the DLSLUG library. While there were a few frustrations, overall he was pleased with the content of the book, it’s organization, clean examples and good indexing. The book didn’t have a good description of how the CDN supplied JS libraries can be downloaded over the web quicker and in the correct forms and versions; he ran into a race condition that took a while to debug. The Dojo book covers 1.1 while he was working with 1.2, may even be up to 1.3 by now, always a problem with letting the ink dry.

Parker (I didn’t catch his last name) posted a Madebyparker.com blog entry that was spurred on by trying to make a copy of document, but the machine was eating dollars, so scanned to his email address and sent it to himself: nine pdfs in nine pages. The Dartmouth facilities wisely try to minimize the waste of paper with something called “GreenPrint” but the implementation leaves something to be desired, especially for folks running Linux. He searched around and found a command line to concatenate the documents together into one PDF for faster printing and management.

Ten folks made it to the meeting, and I have no doubt everyone learned something; a great result!

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Notes from CentraLUG, 2-Feb-2009: Open Source Business Models

Fourteen people attended the February meeting of the Central New Hampshire Linux User Group, a chapter of the Greater New Hampshire Linux User Group. We held our meeting at the usual place and time: the first Monday of the month at the New Hampshire Technical Institute Library, Room 146. Formal meeting starts at 7 PM. Gathering and networking often starts a half-hour earlier.

A few of us met at Panera Bread in Concord before the meeting for dinner and geek talk. We’ll try to make this a regular thing, if people want to.

Before the main meeting, maddog showed off a video he had created, inspired by some recent demonstrations of Open Source software he had seen. Using nothing buy Open Source software, including Inkscape and Kino. maddog emphasized that he’s not an experienced cinematographer, nor had he much experience with the other packages, but that making the video was simple and straight-forward. And the results quite amusing. Look forward to a future post with a link to the video!

We were fortunate to have a variety of attendees to discuss the topic of “Open Source Business Models.” After a brief introduction of what the LUG was about and where to learn more, I opened the floor to the attendees for discussions, and discuss they did!

We talked about the Brazilian music scene, Microsoft EULAs, the difference between Free Software and Open Source software, some great Open Source success stories, like the Project.Net software. There were questions on the fine points of licensing, comments on the openness of the Java Development Kit and runtimes, and much good discussion.

At the end of the evening, two lucky attendees got to pick from the assortment of books we’d been provided by generous publishers. Using the formula of:

(14*rand()).to_int

in interactive ruby and counting off around the room (I started with zero and we went clockwise around the room, a surprisingly difficult process with cats). Mark and Bill each won a book, congratulations! The next CentraLUG meeting will be the 2nd of March. Stay tuned for an announcement of details. Thanks all for attending and vigorously participating. Thanks to Bill for bringing the projector, though we didn’t need it.

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Professional Ruby Conference, Voices That Matter, Boston

Join Me at the Professional Ruby Voices That Matter Conference

Join Me at the Professional Ruby Voices That Matter Conference

Join Me at the Professional Ruby Voices That Matter Conference in Boston November 17 – 20! Fellow NHRuby SIG members (and reknowned book authors and gurus) Nick Plante and David Berube will be among the many knowledgeable speakers. There’s an early bird discount good through October 6th and members of Ruby groups should check with their leaders for an additional discount deal (hint, leaders: contact the conference organizers if they haven’t given you one, already). A good time should be had by all. I hope we don’t get any early-season blizzards, as I’ll be commuting.

FULL DISCLOSURE: I was the lucky attendee who won a free admission at last Tuesdays NH Ruby conference.

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EBM better than ABM!

I was listening the FLOSS weekly podcast of Perl monger extrodinaire Randal Schwartz interviewing Jan Lehnardt about CouchDB, a free-form, non-relational database. CouchDB is built by Damien Katz, one of the originators of Notes and a developer currently employed by IBM. The CouchDB project is hosted by the Apache Foundation. Jan mentioned that his projects include “Everything But Microsoft” meaning that his software was running on Linux and BSD, Debian and RedHat and Ubuntu and CentOS and the Unixes and OS X. I found that a much more inclusive and open way of looking at development than “Anything But Microsoft” that’s often portrayed as a irrational and zealous rejection of anything Microsoft. For those who like to put a positive spin on things, I think that EBM beats ABM by a long shot.

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OpenDisc 08.07 released!

Chris Gray posts: “We’re pleased to release 08.07, the latest version of OpenDisc, with no less than twenty five updates, including Firefox 3 and the latest milestone versions of OpenOffice.org, FileZilla, Seamonkey and many more.” Grab the .iso or join the torrent at http://www.theopendisc.com.

The Open Disc has been a huge benefit in getting clients to see the power of Open Source. On a single disc they can install on all of their Windows machines, share with their friends, make a copy to take home, and it includes a complete office package (OpenOffice.org 2.4), a PDF driver (PDFCreator), diagramming tools (dia, InksScape), desktop publishing software (Scribus) and lots more. It’s a bargain at twice the price!

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CentraLUG, 2-June-2008, Hopkinton, NH: Open Source Advocacy

The monthly meeting of CentraLUG, the Concord/Central NH GNHLUG chapter, happens the first Monday of most months. On June 2nd, we’ll be meeting at the Hopkinton Public Library from 7 PM to 9 PM. (Directions and maps here. [Edit: updated to current link 2014, too late for you to make the meeting, sorry.]) Open to the public. Free admission. Tell your friends. At this meeting, Mark Boyajian, Bill Sconce and other special guests will discuss “Open Source Advocacy.” I hope this spurs some discussions on how we can duplicate their success and avoid problems they can experienced.

About the presentation: Mark and Bill have been working with the Pepperell (MA) Lawrence Library to raise awareness of Open Source software solutions. They kicked-off this effort with a presentation last October in support of Software Freedom Day. The enthusiasm of library director Debra Spratt resulted in the Lawrence Library Tech Talk series: a monthly presentation on Open Source software and issues. Additionally, Debra has facilitated the creation of an Open Source information kiosk as well as a Linux-based computer in the reference library for use by the public!

The Tech Talk series formally launched in February and has consistently drawn a good audience. The kiosk and computer have been up and accessible since March. The experiences of working with this rich environment has surprised, challenged, and taught us many things we never expected. We are all working and adapting to better understand the [technical] needs and interests of the community and how the library can support them.

About Mark and Bill: Mark is an IT consultant (Simple Solutions) specializing in curriculum development and training, database development, and information management using Open Source solutions wherever possible. Mark “started life” as a music teacher, spent 20 years as an environmental field scientist specializing in wetlands and data management, and launched Simple Solutions as a full-time endeavor in 2001 built on Open Source solutions.

Bill Sconce is the proprietor of In-Spec, Inc., a Milford, NH-based consulting company. Bill is an activist with the Greater New Hampshire Linux Group, Secretary to the Board of Directors and coordinator of the Python Special Interest Group. He’s presented to most of the chapters and advocates for Open Source software at many other venues, including the McAuliffe and the NELS/FOSSEd conferences.

Future Meetings: Stay tuned for details on the upcoming bbq/picnic all-hands meeting in July, and for the location of the August meeting, still TBD. As always, meetings are subject to change. You are encouraged to join the low-traffic announcement list at http://mail.gnhlug.org/mailman/listinfo/gnhlug-announce to get announcement and cancellation information.

Meeting promotions: I’ve posted this meeting at lots of locations: FindEventsFast, Eventful, zVents, Upcoming, the GNHLUG announcement list, NHPR, the Concord Monitor. I’d be interested in hearing about where you learned of the event to better tune the meeting promotions.

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This work by Ted Roche is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 United States.