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2002 Nov 06 00:38

2002.11.05 Meeting Notes


  • Neverwinter Night Linux client still 'coming along' and due out this fall.

  • FBI apparently has installed software on computers in libraries that snoops on people's email, web search items, book search items, etc.

  • After spending over 5 years getting 100,000,000 users hooked on their AOL Instant Messenger chat software, AOL is now selling software to businesses so they can spy on their employees.

  • PanIP LLC of La Jolla, CA, is now enforcing two patents it was granted in 1996: "Automated sales and services system" (5,576,951) and "Automatic business and financial transaction-processing system" (6,289,319), also known as 'e-commerce.' They've been mostly hitting smaller, "mom-and-pop" style businesses.

  • Parody RedHat nullifies the differences between bash and csh shells and vi and emacs editors.

  • Microsoft claims its (total cost of ownership (TCO)) is lower than that of Linux. Somehow, 95% of 12 companies studied (that is, 11.4 of the companies...!?!?) had lower TCO using Windows.

  • The minister of education, science and technology in a western region of Spain announced that his local government has begun an aggressive campaign to replace all Windows machines in government, education, business, and even the home, with Linux. They have their own distro., named "Linex" (www.linex.org) (Why not "spanix?")

  • UK police are considering replacing their servers with Linux.

  • European Union is looking to replace all MS-based EU information system machines with Linux.

  • Security: Apache shared memroy vulnerabilities. Mozilla privacy leak. lprng accept jobs from any server (SuSe, Mandrake, RedHat). bzip2 file-creation and symbolic-link-related vuln's. gv buffer overflow. dvips command-execution vuln.

  • Microsoft offered the education system of Namibia (a southern-African nation near South Africa) a $2000 discount on MS Office software. However, they would be required to pay $9000 for Windows XP Operating System. He wrote an open letter to MS, noting that schools like Univ. of Waterloo get millions of dollars to switch Linux servers to Windows, but a poor African school system gets a measely $2000.

  • Yahoo! to switch to PHP!

  • Linux Journal Readers Choice Awards are here. Including: Favorite editors: VIM, VI and clones, EMACS. Distributions, Mandrake (29%), RedHat (12%), Debian (10%). Programming languages: C, C++, Perl.

  • Chris DiBona and others from the VA and SourceForge crowd have started a game development company, DamageStudios. They're working on a massively-multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) entitled "Rekonstruction", due out in 2004.

  • Microsoft judgement is out - Found guilty of being a monopoly. Not much punishment, though. The judge signed off the settlement with the states. The European Union (EU) may open an antitrust case, however, and will probably be harsher than the US.

Project Reports

  • Demo - The Co-Op doesn't want any events scheduled in late November due to the Thanksgiving shopping rush. Henry will try to schedule a demo for Saturday, November 16th.

  • Installfests - The next Installfest will be Sunday, November 17th. Rusty Minden won't be able to run it, so Kevin Murakoshi is helping out. We still need volunteers!

  • LERT - No known recent LERT calls.

  • Library - Pete Salzman donated 'Code Fusion' and 'Using MPI.'

  • Linux Class - 9 people are already signed up for next Wednesday's (November 13th) "Linux for Home and Small Business Networks" class, being held with DCN. No Starch Press has offered to donate some books to us for that event!

Other Business

  • Game - David Cheney won a copy of 'Heavy Gear II' for Linux for guessing the #3 most popular Linux distribution (after Mandrake and Red Hat) in Linux Journal's Readers Choice Awards: Debian.

  • Officer Nominations - Nominations are now open for officer positions. Nominations will close, and voting will begin at the next meeting, November 18th. At today's meeting, Rusty Minden (not present) and Bill Kendrick were nominated for president ("root"). Mike Simons (current VP) and Rusty Minden were nominated for vice-president ("sys"). Stephen Helms was nominated for secretary ("typescript"). Henry House (current treasurer) nominated himself to continue being treasurer ("/dev/null").

  • Public Kiosk and Newsbeat - Not much has been done with the kiosk box, since Bill was busy getting married.

  • Financial Report - $28.54, pls 5&nsbp;Euro in voluntary dues were collected.


  • Lawrence Rosen, General Counsel to the Open Source Initiative, spoke about two new Open Source licenses he's working on, the "Open Software License" and the "Academic Free License," as well as about the legal issues facing Open Source developers. He answer many, many questions from the audience, as well!

    See his website, RosenLaw.com for more.



  • Pete Salzman
  • Mike Simons
  • Bill Kendrick
  • Eric Engelhard
  • Alfredo Lopez
  • Foo Lim
  • Lee Welters
  • Dmitry
  • Ryan C.
  • Marc Hasbrouck
  • Jeff Newmiller
  • Cordell Newmiller
  • Kevin Murakoshi
  • Henry House
  • Michael Wenk
  • Corey Hines
  • Bill W.
  • Jona
  • Larry Rosen
  • Craig
  • Daphne
  • Alan Hollander
  • Karsten Self
  • John Zurella
  • Edward
  • Tamie Taylor
  • David Cheney
  • ... and 3 others

Quotes of the Meeting

  • "It's a lot more fun to do hypotheticals that your clients pay you for." - Lawrence Rosen

  • "I don't know much about Linux, but I know enough about Windows to know anything's better." - Tamie Taylor

  • "I can set my watch by it" - John Z., on Windows ME crashing every 4 days

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