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Linus Torvalds releases subsurface dive tracking software

Linus Torvalds, the creator and maintainer in chief of the Linux kernel, is also well known for his hobby of scuba diving and – as The H-online reports – he’s has just released subsurface, a dive-tracking program he wrote after discovering that no dive log software worked for him. Subsurface runs on Linux and uses […]

A visit from Linux Format

Yesterday the lab received a visit from Jon Roberts, a journalist from Future Publishing‘s Linux Format magazine. Linux Format’s strapline is ‘The #1 source for Linux’ and is also known as LXF. According to the latest ABC figures, LXF has a circulation 25,000 copies per issue. After a round of introductions and a cup of […]

Swiss politicians questioned on open source

Germany’s Linux-Magazin reports that Swiss politicians at both local and national level have been questioned on their attitude to open source by the Zurich Group of the Free Software Foundation Europe (FSFE). The individual questions and answers plus a summary, can be found on a FSFE Zurich Group wiki page (in German).

Even Malta leaves UKgov behind when it comes to open source use

Last week Mark Turner, CEO of Sirius IT and the lead for the Cabinet Office’s ‘New Suppliers to Government’ Workgroup expressed his frustration with the slow pace of implementing changes to the UK Government’s IT and embracing more open source (allegedly to go along with open standards and open data. Ed.) as follows via Twitter: […]

VolvoIT makes savings with Linux workstations

VolvoIT, the IT division of the major car manufacturer, is testing an open source workstation based on Ubuntu amongst its Chinese users, according to The workstations have 80% of the functionality of the proprietary workstations they are replacing but cost only one-fifth (20%) as much. Volvo IT is a standalone organisation within Volvo, employs […]

Today is Software Freedom Day

Yes, that’s right; today lovers of free software all over the world celebrate Software Freedom Day, a global outbreak of gratitude for Free and Open Source Software (FOSS). Its goal is to educate the worldwide public about the benefits of using high quality FOSS in education, in government, at home and in business; in short, […]

Curriculum trial will have schoolchildren learning coding at GCSE level

The Register reports that secondary school pupils could be taught coding, programming and how to write their own software at GCSE level as part of a major overhaul of the IT curriculum for UK schools. An initial trial will involve 100 pupils at 4 schools (Manchester Grammar, Bradfield College, Reading, Park House School, Newbury, and […]

Norwegian street problems site now on v2.0

FiksGataMi, an open source-based service to report local street problems to Norwegian local authorities, launched an upgraded version of its website on 12 September 2011, OSOR reports. The new version – FiksGataMi v2.0 – is easier for both citizens and local authorities to use. FiksGataMi is a nationwide service to report faults and problems, including […]

Life’s wild editing Wikipedia

Yesterday Bristol Wireless volunteers Jim and your correspondent attended the afternoon session of the two Wiki Wildlife Edit-a-thons (news passim) that were jointly organised by Wikimedia UK and Wildscreen’s ARKive project, the Bristol-based digital archive of the world’s endangered species, which has kindly donated 200 items from its text archive on endangered species to help […]

It’s the Mad Hackers Tea Party tonight

Bristol Hackspace has written to us to let us know they’re kicking off their INCUBE8 series this Thursday evening (that’s tonight! Ed.) with The Mad Hackers Tea Party! In Bristol Hackspace’s own words: “Mad Hackers Tea Party is an exhibition of some of the bizarre devices Bristol Hackspace has constructed over the past few years. […]

DfT embraces open source platform and cloud-based hosting

Will wonders never cease? The chief scribe’s jaw dropped wide open when he heard the latest open source news from the depths of Whitehall, particularly as its content runs counter to the usual UK public sector open source news theme. Read on… According to OSOR, the UK’s Department for Transport (DfT) has signed a new […]

Open source e-book tool reduces paper waste at Italian parliament

The Scriba eBook Maker, an open source tool to create documents for e-readers, is helping to cut down on waste paper in the Italian Parliament, according to OSOR. Senators are increasingly combining smart phones and tablet devices with the Scriba e-document service, offering them a practical access to all kinds of documents. Scriba eBook Maker […]

City of Bregenz reduces costs with open source VoIP telephone system

The Austrian City of Bregenz has changed its entire telephone infrastructure using a new open source and IP-based telephone system provided by an Austrian software company, OSOR reports. As a result, it has made substantial savings. Since autumn 2010, more than 250 city council employees have been using the system at 10 different locations across […]

Linux Foundation needs feedback on update to FHS reports that just before LinuxCon North America in Vancouver, The Linux Foundation released a draft proposal for an update to the Linux Filesystem Hierarchy Standard (FHS). Versions of the draft (in plain text, HTML and PDF versions) can be found at This draft removes quite a few historical filesystem artifacts, such as /usr/X11R6 […]

Swiss Federal Court may share its DMS as open source

The Swiss Parliament’s control committee for the Federal Court is allowing the publication of Open Justitia, a document management system (DMS) developed in-house by the court as open source software, according to OSOR. The software will be made available under the GPLv3 licence soon. The parliament’s committee discussed Open Justitia last Thursday following complaints by […]

We’re in the latest Tuxradar podcast

Along with our friends over the road at Bristol Hackspace, Bristol Wireless gets an honourable mention in the latest Tuxradar podcast, brought to the world by Linux Format magazine. The podcast is available as both a high quality ogg or a low quality mp3. The total length of the podcast is 53:18. What’s more, we’re […]

Coming soon: Knowle West T party… with scones!

Earlier today, our friends at Knowle West Media Centre announced the forthcoming Knowle West T Party on 26th September at the Media Centre itself on Leinster Avenue (map). The event starts at 1.00 p.m. and ends at 3.00 p.m and attendance is free. The strapline for the T Party is ‘Keeping in Touch with Technology’ […]