Saturday, April 30, 2011

Time Machine Review: The memories and strangers of Dark City

In today’s Time Machine Review we’re traveling back to 1998 for Dark City.

In this film, written, directed, and produced by Alex Proyas, John Murdoch wakes up naked in a bathtub in a strange city.

There is blood on his forehead, and a murdered hooker on the floor of the room, but he doesn’t remember anything.

He’s launched into an adventure of discovery, as he follows the clues in an attempt to discover who he is, and to see if he’s the man who has been murdering prostitutes over the last few weeks.

The plot deepens when he discovers that there is more to the city than he thought. Once every twelve hours, the entire city falls asleep, and the buildings rearrange, but no matter how long he stays awake, the sun never rises.

When he discovers that the city is an alien experiment, and the population are the subjects, a mysterious psychologist must help him overcome The Strangers, and use their machines against them.

The film is an interpretation of the allegory of the cave in which the machinery of the city is the light of the fire, and the sun must be fought for by a great mental hero, who finds a greater truth, not just metaphorically, but also literally, and he is set up as both a liberator of the people and their new jailor.

Rufus Sewell plays a perfect distraughtly frustrated protagonist. His eyes blaze, and his voice wavers and cracks as the situation begins to take its toll on him, but as his confidence rises, and the final confrontation begins to take form, he plays well also the confident hero, doing what he must to save the city and the girl.

The role is a departure for Sewell who had mostly taken dramatic romances in the past, and it’s a shame that he didn’t see many other speculative scripts afterward either. His stint in 11th Hour was good, but not good enough to measure up to Patrick Steward - though, really, who could be?

Jennifer Connelly plays John’s loving but confused wife, a jazz bar singer with a rebellious streak.

The role is not much of a stretch for her, and the character she plays here is basically the same as every character she’d played before. She has a perfect face for pure bemusement, and this part called for quite a bit of that.

One of the most interesting actors to see in this one looking back is Kiefer Sutherland as the psychologist, Dr. Schreiber. He mostly known for his dramatic roles, and lately, especially for his action drama (which he produced, wrote, and stared in) 24. This film shows a breadth of acting that most modern fans likely don’t realize he has, after seeing so much of Jack Bauer.

In contrast, William Hurt as Detective Bumstead, is the same plain-faced character he is in every film. Much more homogenized even than Connelly. And, while Connelly has broken out and branched into new and different roles since Dark City, Hurt has not.

The effects in the film have aged well, and the pacing and flow of the plot still seems to work after 13 years. The film is dark, not just in scope, but also in many of the visuals, even making some scenes difficult to watch if not in a properly darkened room, but the darkness is fitting, and makes the bright and shiny pay-off at the end feel that much more satisfying, as one literally emerges from the darkness.

In 2008, New Line released the Dark City Directors Cut, which mostly included about fifteen minutes of establishing shots, and trailing visuals which were cur from the original film for time.

For example, the scene in which Connelly’s character is introduced in the Jazz bar gets shortened in the original cut, but in the newer version, she is let to sing - and rock her shapely hips - for a minute, at least.

The only thing removed is the opening Narration, which was added originally as an afterthought to help audiences get what was going on, but Proyas later felt that it revealed too much, and prefers the version of the film which jumps right into the opening scene. This new version of the film does improve upon the original, but not so much that it’s essential.

Weather it was influential, or just came first, Dark City headed up a brief trend for action oriented, high budgeted movies which asked questions about the realness of their worlds, includingThirteenth Floor and The Matrix, which both came out the following year - and were both also excellent films.

The now classic is a new staple of speculative fiction story-telling in film. It’s an excellent examples of how to do just about everything right in sci-fi filmmaking, combining some of the best stylistic and concrete elements of the history of film.

FBI says it is "reviewing" PSN security breach

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is currently "reviewing" a recent security breach that compromised user data and downed the PlayStation Network (PSN) for over a week.

"The FBI is aware of the reports concerning the alleged intrusion into the Sony on line game server and we have been in contact with Sony concerning this matter," special agent Darrell Foxworth toldKotaku.

FBI says it is "reviewing" PSN security breach "We are presently reviewing the available information in an effort to determine the facts and circumstances concerning this alleged criminal activity."

Meanwhile, at least two dozen state AG's have kicked off their own investigation of the incident, with the FTC confirming it could theoretically claim jurisdiction in a case that involved loss of customer data via a security breach. 

"The fact that sensitive information was apparently accessed without authorization makes me especially concerned about the possibility of financial fraud and targeted phishing scams," Connecticut Attorney General George Jepsen wrote in an official letter to SCE CEO Jack Tretton.

"What is more troubling is Sony's apparent failure to promptly and adequately notify affected individuals of this large-scale breach."

As expected, a number of other countries aside from the United States have expressed concern over the embarrassing and damaging security lapse.

For example, the city of Taipei (Taiwan) is apparently demanding that Sony provide satisfactory details about the leak within 10 days or face heavy fines for alleged breaches of local consumer protection laws.

"Manufacturers and service providers should take responsibility for their customers' reasonable expectations of security, including personal information security," Taiwan capital's Law and Regulation Commission said in a letter obtained by PC World.

"This incident [is said to] involve leaks of consumer names, e-mails, birth dates and even credit card information."

Indeed, security researchers say stolen credit card information may already be up for sale on various Internet forums.

"The hackers that hacked PSN are selling off the DB. They reportedly have 2.2 million credits cards with CVVs," Trend Micro security expert Kevin Stevens claimed in a tweet.

"Supposedly the hackers selling the DB says it has: fname, lnam, address, zip, country, phone, email, password, dob, ccnum, CVV2, exp date... It is not a rumor, it was a conversation on a criminal forum. [Still], I never saw the DB so I can't verify if it is real."

Ubuntu Rescue Remix 11.04

Andrew Zajac has announced the release of Ubuntu Rescue Remix 11.04, an Ubuntu-based live medium which provides the data recovery specialist with a command-line interface environment equipped useful free and open-source data recovery and forensics tools: "Version 11.04 'Natty Narwhal' of the very best libre open-source data recovery software toolkit based on Ubuntu is out. This version features and up-to-date infrastructure and several new packages, including Dump, a backup and restore solution as well as ClamAV, the best in libre anti-virus software. Ubuntu-Rescue-Remix features a full command-line environment with the newsest versions of the most powerful libre open-source data recovery software including GNU ddrescue, Photorec, The Sleuth Kit and Gnu-fdisk." Here is the brief release announcement. Download (MD5): UbuntuRescueRemix1104.iso (224MB).

Friday, April 29, 2011

Veteran hacker takes on new role at ICANN

Veteran hacker Jeff Moss - who founded both the DEF CON and Black Hat conferences - has been appointed VP and chief security officer of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN).

"I can think of no one with a greater understanding of the security threats facing Internet users and how best to defend against them than Jeff Moss," said ICANN CEO Rod Beckstrom.

Veteran hacker takes on new role at ICANN"He has the in-depth insider's knowledge that can only come from fighting in the trenches of the on-going war against cyber threats."

Indeed, Moss has been a self-proclaimed hacker for over 20 years.

Prior to his work with Black Hat and DEF CON, Moss was a director at the Secure Computing Corporation, where he established the professional services department in Asia, Australia and the United States. Moss also worked in the information system security division of Ernst & Young, LLP.

Unsurprisingly, the ICANN appointment has been widely endorsed by a number of prominent security organizations, including the Internet Systems Consortium, Information Society Alliance and the Center for Technology and National Security Policy (CTNSP).

"Jeff Moss' selection as ICANN's Chief Security Officer is an outstanding choice," explained CTNSP director Linton Wells.

"Too often, Internet security experts don't understand the motivations and mindsets of those who pose an online threat to Internet users. Jeff has shown time and again that he not only understands hackers, but that he also truly gets why they do what they do."

Meanwhile, Moss said he "looked forward" to assuming his new role at ICANN.

"Its role in coordinating the global Internet addressing system means that it is positioned to become the leader in identifying and dealing with online threats to the Domain Name System that could affect two billion global Internet users."

Moss graduated from Gonzaga University with a BA in Criminal Justice. He currently serves as a member of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Advisory Council and is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.

Royal wedding madness invades social networks

My excitement and anticipation for the big royal wedding has been mounting for weeks, not because I’m somewhat of an Anglophile but rather for the sheer once-in-a-lifetime excitement of the whole thing.

Apparently, I’m not the only one with such royal envy, as my social networks explode with royal wedding reminders.

Needless to say I was excited this morning, jumping out of bed at 5 a.m. New York time. This stands in stark contrast to my usual morning routine, which requires a forklift and caffeine IV drip to even think about getting out of bed.

Immediately signing on to Twitter, I noticed the social network abuzz not only from friends in England but surprisingly, friends in Berlin, New York, and even L.A.

Yesterday, #RoyalWedding popped up as a Promoted Tweet on my Twitter feed. Immediately I asked myself, who is paying for this Promoted Tweet? It couldn’t possibly be the British royal family, but perhaps the British Tourism board? The major news networks? To this I say, good! Why not?

Beyond the Promoted Tweet, the rest of the trending topics this morning range from Westminster Abbey, Prince Harry, Camilla, Buckingham Palace and even Brits. Keep in mind, it is 6 a.m. here in New York City and I’m having Twitter conversations with friends and colleagues about the intricacies of the wedding, the music, the dress, the guest list.

And then the Foursquare and Facebook Places check-ins begin. And I’m not just talking about friends in Britain. Instead, New Yorkers are checking into royal wedding locations in Times Square, as a “moving target” and more. Searching Foursquare yields over twenty locations.

Upon visiting, the Doodle even represents a cartoon drawing of the wedding party complete with confetti and the carriage. Heck, even Google Street View has a royal wedding theme with the little Street View character replaced by a cartoon bride and groom if you search a location near Westminster Abbey. How lovely.

Although the sheer extravagance of the royal wedding has indeed been criticized in a time when England and the rest of the world is facing hard economic times, analysts argue that the royal wedding brings England up to ten hours of TV time, which in advertising hours would cost somewhere near 1 billion dollars to achieve.

The strong TV and social networking presence represents a ten hour “Visit Britain” billboard across the world in high heels and an McQueen dress, which in my opinion is perfect reason to be excited about a royal wedding. Besides, why does it always have to be serious all the time?

My only complaint? There was no royal smooch! Not to worry, William and Kate will have a scheduled kiss on the balcony of Buckingham Palace as a hat tip to Diana and Charles' moment back in 1981. A scheduled kiss? How very British.

Transformers: Dark of the Moon unleashes a new trailer on the unsuspecting masses

Trailer: Director Michael Bay and Producer Stephen Spielberg have released a new trailer for Transformers: Dark of the Moon, the third, and most explosion friendly movie of Bay’s trilogy.

In the third film in the Transformers trilogy, a Cybertonian spacecraft is discovered on the moon, and it begins a desperate race between the Autobots and Decepticons to see who can learn its secrets first. Meanwhile down on Earth there are lots of things happening! Important, impressive things…

Ok, look: there are robots, they blow the heck out of stuff, and pretty much everything they touch inevitably explodes in one way or another. You know what to expect with the Transformers series, and if you are hoping for something else, you are watching the wrong movies.

It is a popcorn flick with lots of action, tons of destruction and beautriful women, none of whom are Megan Fox. The newly released trailer below shows off some of the expensive effects you would hope to see in a Michael Bay flick. In fact, the effects highlighted in the trailer alone are probably more expensive than the budgets of half the movies released this year.

Check out the awesome destruction and pretty robots, then look for Transformers: Dark of the Moon in 2D, 3D and IMAX on July 1.

Xubuntu 11.04

Xubuntu 11.04, an official Ubuntu flavour featuring the Xfce desktop, has been released: "Xubuntu 11.04, code-named the 'Natty Narwhal', is the latest and greatest version of Xubuntu." What's new? "Xubuntu wallpaper has been updated for this release. The wallpaper is designed to integrate well with the new graybird theme. The installation slideshow has been updated, and really displays the best of Xubuntu. The Elementary Xubuntu icon theme has been updated. Xubuntu is using the Droid font by default, since it is a lightweight, good visibility font. The newly released Xfce 4.8 is included. The menus in Xfce 4.8 are now editable with any menu editor that meets the standards." See the release announcement and release notes for a list of major changes. Download (SHA256): xubuntu-11.04-desktop-i386.iso (689MB, torrent), xubuntu-11.04-desktop-amd64.iso (688MB, torrent).

Lubuntu 11.04

Mario Behling has announced the release of Lubuntu 11.04, an unofficial Ubuntu variant that showcases the lightweight, but full-featured LXDE desktop: "Julien Lavergne has released Lubuntu 11.04. Features: based on the lightweight LXDE desktop environment; PCManFM 0.9.8, a fast and lightweight file manager using GIO/GVFS; LXDE, a lightweight GTK+ display manager; Chromium, the open-source version of Google Chrome; based on Ubuntu 11.04. Improvements since Lubuntu 10.10: new automatic way to build the ISO images; switch from Aqualung to Audacious for the music player; switch from Xarchiver to File Roller for the archives; switch from Cheese to GTK+ UVC Viewer for using webcams; new added applications - gucharmap, LXKeymap, documentation; Lubuntu is now HAL free; new theme." Read the full release announcement for a full list of improvements. Download: lubuntu-11.04.iso (680MB, MD5, torrent).

ZevenOS 1.9.9 "Neptune"

Leszek Lesner has announced the release of ZevenOS 1.9.9 "Neptune" edition, a Debian-based Linux distribution featuring the KDE 4.6.2 desktop: "The ZevenOS Neptune team is pleased to announce the release of ZevenOS 'Neptune' 1.9.9. This release comes with a couple of changes and new features. We updated the Linux kernel to version which comes with neat little features, like better hardware support for wireless network cards and the famous cgroups patch which brings more speed under heavy load. The underlying Debian 'Squeeze' system was upgraded to Debian 'Testing' which will provide newer applications through the life cycle of Neptune 1.9.9. KDE SC 4.6.2 makes it d├ębut with lots of updates and the typical Neptune look & feel and a new default font, the Ubuntu Font. For the sake of consistency we replaced Synaptic and Software Center with their KDE/Qt-based counterparts - Muon and KPackageKit." The release announcement contains more information and a screenshot. Download: neptune199-kde-final.iso (1,418MB).

Absolute Linux 13.2.2

Paul Sherman has announced the release of Absolute Linux 13.2.2, a lightweight, Slackware-based desktop distribution featuring the IceWM window manager: "Absolute Linux 13.2.2 released. Use of HAL has been dropped for newer ConsoleKit and udisks, as well as LXDE's newer version of PCManFM. Code changes for the Absolute customizations in libfm and PCManFM are included in /usr/doc for each package. Devmon replaces halevt to handle DVD and audio CDs. You'll notice edits to .initrc, .bashrc .bash_logout as well as the start-up file for IceWM reflecting the changes." Other major changes include switch to LibreOffice as the optional office suite, upgrade to IceWM 1.3.7, and synchronisation of packages with Slackware's current tree. See the brief release announcement and the detailed changelog for further information. Download (MD5) the installation CD image from SourceForge:absolute-13.2.2.iso (698MB).

Ubuntu Studio 11.04

Scott Lavender has announced the release of Ubuntu Studio 11.04, a specialist Ubuntu variant featuring a large collection of packages for multimedia tasks: "The Ubuntu Studio team is very excited over its ninth release: 11.04 'Natty Narwhal', available as a 1.5 GB DVD ISO image. Numerous improvements have been implemented for this release, but here are some of the more notable ones. The task selections during installation have been updated; the audio tasks have been parsed into two groups: generation and recording. The 'generation' task selection is focused more on synthesizers and sequencers and the 'recording' task focuses on recording live musician performances. Currently, Ubuntu Studio is shipping the -generic kernel; we are working with the Ubuntu kernel team to get a -lowlatency kernel into the archives." Here are the full release notes. Download (SHA256): ubuntustudio-11.04-alternate-i386.iso (1,488MB, torrent), ubuntustudio-11.04-alternate-amd64.iso(1,558MB, torrent).

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Mythbuntu 11.04

Mythbuntu 11.04, a new version of the Ubuntu-based distribution focusing on easy set up of a standalone MythTV system, is out today: "Mythbuntu 11.04 has been released. It is very important to note that this release is only compatible with MythTV 0.24 systems. Previous Mythbuntu releases can be upgraded to a compatible version with the builds located here. For a more detailed explanation, see here. Changes from Mythbuntu 10.10: MythTV 0.24; Mythbuntu-bare scheduling now available for backups; Android and iOS devices can now be used as remote controls; underlying Ubuntu updates; recent snapshot of the MythTV 0.24 release is included; preview of the upcoming MythNetvision plugin; Mythbuntu theme fixes." Read the rest of the release announcement for more information and known issues.Download (SHA256): mythbuntu-11.04-desktop-i386.iso (645MB, torrent),mythbuntu-11.04-desktop-amd64.iso (698MB, torrent).

Edubuntu 11.04

Edubuntu 11.04, the educational flavour of Ubuntu, has been released: "The Edubuntu development team is really proud and happy to announce that Edubuntu 11.04 has now been released. This version builds on the excellent 10.10 release, making the installation process even more flexible and improves the desktop not only by updating it but also by updating the look & feel and choosing the best available software for each use case. Here are the major changes and choices we made for this 11.04 release: Edubuntu 11.04 ships with a classic Ubuntu desktop by default; it's now possible to do fine-grained package selection so you can install only what you need; ships with Arkose installed by default...." Here is the complete release announcement. Download (SHA256): edubuntu-11.04-dvd-i386.iso (2,768MB,torrent), edubuntu-11.04-dvd-amd64.iso (2,800MB, torrent).

Kubuntu 11.04

Kubuntu 11.04, a useful Ubuntu variant featuring the latest KDE desktop, is ready: "The Kubuntu team is proud to announce the release of 11.04 - codename 'Natty Narwhal': the latest version of our popular Linux distribution, based on Ubuntu and KDE's Plasma and Applications 4.6. With the combination of its Ubuntu backbone, the amazing KDE Software Compilation, and a few unique extras, 11.04 aims to provide the best fusion of stability, beauty, and up-to-date software. Whether working, browsing the web, playing your music, composing an email or connecting with your friends on social networks, Kubuntu brings you a powerful, innovative and attractive platform for all your desktop needs!" See the release announcement andrelease notes for additional details. Download (SHA256): kubuntu-11.04-desktop-i386.iso (696MB, torrent), kubuntu-11.04-desktop-amd64.iso (694MB, torrent).

Yahoo sells Delicious to YouTube founders

Yahoo's finally found someone to take bookmarking service Delicious off its hands, selling up to YouTube founders Chad Hurley and Steve Chen.

Yahoo acquired Delicious about five years ago. Late last year, the company announced that it was planning to shut down Delicious, along with several other poorly-performing services, after making nearly 600 layoffs. It warned that if no buyer appeared by this July, the unit would be closed.

But Hurley and Chen have ridden to the rescue, saying they plan to incorporate Delicious into their new venture, Avos. They say they intend to continue the service in its present form.

"We’re excited to work with this fantastic community and take Delicious to the next level," says CEO Hurley. "We see a tremendous opportunity to simplify the way users save and share content they discover anywhere on the web."

Yahoo will continue to run the service until July. In the meantime, Delicious users will need to transition their bookmarks to Avos, after which the service will continue to work without any further changes. The founders say their first priority will be to release the new Firefox 4 extension 'as soon as possible'.

Meanwhile, according to the Wall Street Journal, News Corp is accepting offers for social networking site MySpace. It's said to be looking for around $100 million - well up on the $580 million it's believed to have paid for the site back in 2005, despite the site's poor performance since.

Satnav maker gives data to police

Europe's largest satnav manufacturer, TomTom, has apologized to customers after admitting it sold driver data to the cops.
TomTom customers routinely give permission to the company to collect travel time information. But Dutch newspaper Algemeen Dagblad reports that the company has been handing over this data on its customers to help the police choose locations for speed cameras.

The company has now apologized, saying it gave out the information only because it believed that the move would help reduce traffic accidents. It also says that all data was anonymized.

"When you connect your TomTom to a computer we aggregate this information and use it for a variety of applications, most importantly to create high quality traffic information and to route you around traffic jams. We also make this information available to local governments and authorities. It helps them to better understand where congestion takes place, where to build new roads and how to make
roads safer," chief executive Harold Goddijn told customers in an email.

"We are now aware that the police have used traffic information that you have helped to create to place speed cameras at dangerous locations where the average speed is higher than the legally
allowed speed limit. We are aware a lot of our customers do not like the idea and we will look at if we should allow this type of usage."

With poor sales forcasts for the quarter, TomTom recently said that it was hoping to grow revenues from the sale of traffic data to governments. The data seems to have been passed on to the police without TomTom's knowledge.

Ubuntu 11.04

Ubuntu 11.04, a new version of the popular Linux distribution for desktops and servers, has been released: "The Ubuntu team is pleased to announce Ubuntu 11.04, code-named 'Natty Narwhal'. 11.04 continues Ubuntu's proud tradition of integrating the latest and greatest open source technologies into a high-quality, easy-to-use Linux distribution. For PC users, Ubuntu 11.04 supports laptops, desktops and netbooks with a unified look and feel based on a new desktop shell called 'Unity'. This version supersedes Ubuntu Netbook Edition for all PC netbooks. Developer reference images are provided for select Texas Instruments (TI) ARM platforms, specifically the 'PandaBoard' and 'BeagleBoard'. Ubuntu Server 11.04 has made it easier to provision servers, and reduce power consumption." See the release announcement and release notes for more information. Download (SHA256): ubuntu-11.04-desktop-i386.iso (685MB, torrent), ubuntu-11.04-desktop-amd64.iso (698MB, torrent).

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Chakra GNU/Linux 2011.04

Phil Miller has announced the release of Chakra GNU/Linux 2011/04, an Arch-based distribution featuring the latest KDE desktop: "The Chakra development team is proud to announce the release of Chakra GNU/Linux 2011.04, code-named 'Aida'. Two month have passed since Chakra 2011.02. Now it is time for Aida to impress. We added kernel and lots of package updates. KDE got updated to 4.6.2 with our patches added, such as our hardware detection, including the latest drivers. Manuel Tortosa managed to remove all GTK+ dependencies from LibreOffice, so you can use it from our DVD edition on your KDE desktop without GTK+ installed. Also we added AppSet as our front-end for Pacman. For all our GTK+ fans we have added some popular GTK+ applications as bundles." Read the rest of the release announcement for more details. Download: chakra-2011.04-kde462-i686.iso (686MB, MD5), chakra-2011.04-kde462-x86_64.iso (697MB, MD5).

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Slackware Linux 13.37

Slackware Linux 13.37, a new version of the world's oldest surviving Linux-based operating system, has been released: "It's true! Slackware 13.37 has been released. Nearly a year in the making, you will appreciate the performance and stability that can only come with careful and rigorous testing. Slackware 13.37 uses the Linux kernel and also ships with kernels for those who want to run the latest. The long-awaited Firefox 4.0 web browser is included, the X Window System has been upgraded (and includes the open source nouveau driver for NVIDIA cards). The venerable Slackware installer has been improved as well, with support for installing to btrfs, a one-package-per-line display mode option, and an easy to set-up PXE install server that runs right off the DVD!" For full details please read the release announcement. The installation DVD images are available for download via BitTorrent: slackware-13.37-install-dvd.iso (4,334MB), slackware64-13.37-install-dvd.iso (4,402MB).

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Kororaa Linux 14 Beta 6

Chris Smart has announced that the sixth beta build of Kororaa Linux 14, a Fedora-based desktop distribution with a choice of KDE 4.6 and GNOME 2.30 desktops, is ready for download and testing: "Kororaa Linux 14 (Nemo) beta 6 has been released for download, in 32-bit and 64-bit variants with KDE and GNOME. This version is recommended for all new installs. New features: KDE 4.6; cleaned up application menus; added the Synaptic package manager; slide show backgrounds. Bug fixes: dropped Download Statusbar Firefox add-on, due to proprietary license." Here is the brief release announcement. Download (MD5) the live DVD images from here: Kororaa-14-Beta6-i686-Live-GNOME.iso (1,518MB), Kororaa-14-Beta6-i686-Live-KDE.iso (1,722MB), Kororaa-14-Beta6-x86_64-Live-GNOME.iso (1,561MB), Kororaa-14-Beta6-x86_64-Live-KDE.iso (1,776MB).

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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Inside a Google Data Center

This video gives a rare look inside one of Google's data centers, you know the place where Google stores all your personal data. This video put out by Google wants to reassure you that all your deets are safe, secure and under control.

In their data centers, Google has traditional security methods like physical road barriers, perimeter fencing and security cameras and more advanced measures like iris scanners and file fragmentation and replication.

But by far my most favoritest part of the video ever was how they dispose of dead hard drives. They drive a piston straight through the disk and then send them through a crusher to blow them into smithereens for recycling. Check for it at the 3:45 mark.

DragonFly BSD 2.10.1

Matthew Dillon has announced the release of DragonFly BSD 2.10.1, a BSD operating system originally forked from FreeBSD 4 series: "The DragonFly BSD 2.10.1 release is now available. This release sports significant compatibility and performance improvements and many new features. Big-ticket items: this release supports a much larger variety of hardware and multiprocessor systems than previous releases, thanks to updates of ACPI and APIC and ACPI interrupt routing support; Hammer volumes can now deduplicate volumes overnight in a batch process and during live operation; Packet Filter (pf) was updated to a version based upon OpenBSD 4.4; DragonFly now uses GCC 4.4 as the default system compiler, and is the first BSD to take that step; significant performance gains over previous releases...." Read the release notes for detailed information about the changes and features in this version. Download (MD5, mirror list): dfly-i386-2.10.1_REL.iso.bz2 (185MB), dfly-x86_64-2.10.1_REL.iso.bz2 (190MB).

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Mageia 1 Beta 2

Anne Nicolas has announced the availability of the second beta release of Mageia 1, a new distribution created by former developers and contributors to Mandriva Linux: "The second beta release of Mageia 1 is now available for downloads and testing. What's new? Lots of bug fixes and software updates. Linux kernel, LibreOffice, KDE 4.6.2, Firefox 4.0, Chromium browser 12.0.742.0 and many others. We froze the software package versions last week. This means that no new, big, upstream code changes will be accepted in Mageia until our final release in June; then we will re-open the doors. We will now focus on fixing and reducing our bug lists and refining and polishing the user experience. We are setting up our security team so it's ready for the final release." Read the release announcement and release notes for further details. Download (mirror list): mageia-dvd-1-Beta2-i586.iso (4,162MB, MD5, torrent), mageia-dvd-1-Beta2-x86_64.iso (4,112MB, MD5, torrent).

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Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Bayanihan Linux 5.4

Tracy Melissa Decena has announced the release of Bayanihan Linux 5.4, a new revision of the desktop-oriented distribution based on Debian's old stable branch, featuring the legacy KDE 3.5 desktop: "Bayanihan Linux 5 Revision 4 is now available for download. The newest 'Kalumbata' revision now features LibreOffice by The Document Foundation, an open-source office productivity suite derived from However, 3.3, the latest version, is still bundled in the installer. Also packed in the new ISO image is the latest release of Bayanihan Linux's default web browser, Mozilla Firefox 4. Tons of security updates are also added. For old Bayanihan Linux users, software updates can be downloaded via Synaptic." See the release announcement which include upgrade instructions for existing users. Download the installation CD image from here: Bayanihan5Desktop-Installer-i386-686-Rev4.iso (700MB).

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