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Getting started with Mercurial for version control

lun, 04/15/2019 - 09:01

Mercurial is a distributed version control system written in Python. Because it's written in a high-level language, you can write a Mercurial extension with a few Python functions.

There are several ways to install Mercurial, which are explained in the official documentation. My favorite one is not there: using pip. This is the most amenable way to develop local extensions!


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Inter-process communication in Linux: Shared storage

lun, 04/15/2019 - 09:00

This is the first article in a series about interprocess communication (IPC) in Linux. The series uses code examples in C to clarify the following IPC mechanisms:


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How libraries are adopting open source

ven, 04/12/2019 - 09:02

Four years ago, I interviewed Nathan Currulla, co-founder of ByWater Solutions, a major services and solutions provider for Koha, a popular open source integrated library system (ILS).


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What's your primary backup strategy for the /home directory in Linux?

ven, 04/12/2019 - 09:01

I frequently upgrade to newer releases of Fedora, which is my primary distribution. I also upgrade other distros but much less frequently. I have also had many crashes of various types over the years, including a large portion of self-inflicted ones. Past experience with data loss has made me very aware of the need for good backups.

I back up many parts of my Linux hosts but my /home directory is especially important. Losing any of the data in /home on my primary workstation due to a crash or an upgrade could be disastrous.


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Designing posters with Krita, Scribus, and Inkscape

ven, 04/12/2019 - 09:00

A few months ago, I was asked to design some posters for a local Free Software Foundation (FSF) event. Richard M. Stallman was visiting our country, and my friend Abhas Abhinav wanted to put up some posters and banners to promote his visit. I designed two posters for RMS's talk in Bangalore. 


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Be your own certificate authority

jeu, 04/11/2019 - 09:03

The Transport Layer Security (TLS) model, which is sometimes referred to by the older name SSL, is based on the concept of certificate authorities (CAs). These authorities are trusted by browsers and operating systems and, in turn, sign servers' certificates to validate their ownership.


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Testing Small Scale Scrum in the real world

jeu, 04/11/2019 - 09:02

Scrum is built on the three pillars of inspection, adaptation, and transparency. Our empirical research is really the starting point in bringing scrum, one of the most popular agile implementations, to smaller teams. As presented in the diagram below, we are now taking time to inspect this framework and principles by testing them in real-world projects.


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Managed, enabled, empowered: 3 dimensions of leadership in an open organization

jeu, 04/11/2019 - 09:01

"Empowerment" seems to be the latest people management buzzword. And it's an important consideration for open organizations, too. After all, we like to think these open organizations thrive when the people inside them are equipped to take initiative to do their best work as they see fit. Shouldn't an open leader's goal be complete and total empowerment of everyone, in all parts of the organization, doing all types of work?

Not necessarily.


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How do you contribute to open source without code?

jeu, 04/11/2019 - 09:00

My earliest open source contributions date back to the mid-1980s when our organization first connected to UseNet where we discovered the contributed code and the opportunities to share in its development and support.

Today there are endless contribution opportunities, from contributing code to making how-to videos.


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How we built a Linux desktop app with Electron

mer, 04/10/2019 - 09:02

Tutanota is a secure, open source email service that's been available as an app for the browser, iOS, and Android. The client code is published under GPLv3 and the Android app is available on F-Droid to enable everyone to use a completely Google-free version.


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How to enable serverless computing in Kubernetes

mer, 04/10/2019 - 09:01

In the first two articles in this series about using serverless on an open source platform, I described how to get started with serverless platforms and how to write functions in popular languages and build components using containers on Apache OpenWhisk.


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What to do when Java SE 11 removes JNLP

mer, 04/10/2019 - 09:00

For about the past 15 years, an organization I work with has used the Java Network Launching Protocol (JNLP) to internally distribute a Java Swing desktop application to its users.


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What it takes to become a blockchain developer

mar, 04/09/2019 - 09:03

The past decade has been an interesting time for the development of decentralized technologies. Before 2009, the progress was slow and without any clear direction until Satoshi Nakamoto created and deployed Bitcoin. That brought blockchain, the record-keeping technology behind Bitcoin, into the limelight.


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5 Linux rookie mistakes

mar, 04/09/2019 - 09:02

It's smart to learn new skills throughout your life—it keeps your mind nimble and makes you more competitive in the job market. But some skills are harder to learn than others, especially those where small rookie mistakes can cost you a lot of time and trouble when you're trying to fix them.


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5 open source mobile apps

mar, 04/09/2019 - 09:01

Like most people in the world, I'm rarely further than an arm's reach from my smartphone. My Android device provides a seemingly limitless number of communication, productivity, and entertainment services thanks to the open source mobile apps I've installed from Google Play and F-Droid.

​​​​​​Of the many open source apps on my phone, the following five are the ones I consistently turn to whether I want to listen to music; connect with friends, family, and colleagues; or get work done on the go.


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A 3-step process for delivering tough feedback

mar, 04/09/2019 - 09:00

Seventeen years ago, I'd earned my first leadership role and become responsible for roughly ten direct reports. Two weeks into the role, my boss took me for a coffee to chat about how things were going.

"I'm not getting what I need from you," she said.

The statement left no ambiguity, no wiggle room, and no space for interpretation. She let it hang in the air for a moment. When I acknowledged it, she followed it up with direct examples of what she needed and what she was seeing.

I now realize it was the first proper coaching session of my career.


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A beginner's guide to building DevOps pipelines with open source tools

lun, 04/08/2019 - 09:02

DevOps has become the default answer to fixing software development processes that are slow, siloed, or otherwise dysfunctional. But that doesn't mean very much when you're new to DevOps and aren't sure where to begin. This article explores what a DevOps pipeline is and offers a five-step process to create one. While this tutorial is not comprehensive, it should give you a foundation to start on and expand later. But first, a story.


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Getting started with Python's cryptography library

lun, 04/08/2019 - 09:01

The first rule of cryptography club is: never invent a cryptography system yourself. The second rule of cryptography club is: never implement a cryptography system yourself: many real-world holes are found in the implementation phase of a cryptosystem as well as in the design.


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Bash vs. Python: Which language should you use?

lun, 04/08/2019 - 09:01

Bash and Python are most automation engineers' favorite programming languages. Both have pros and cons, and sometimes it can be hard to choose which one you should use. The honest answer is: It depends on the task, the scope, the context, and the complexity of the task.

Let's compare these two languages to get a better understanding of where each one shines.


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Happy 14th anniversary Git: What do you love about Git?

dim, 04/07/2019 - 09:01

In the 14 years since Linus Torvalds developed Git, its influence on software development practices would be hard to match—in StackOverflow's 2018 developer survey, 87% of respondents said they use Git for version control. Clearly, no other tool is anywhere close to knocking Git off its throne as the king of source control management (SCM).

In honor of Git's 14th anniversary on April 7, I asked some enthusiasts what they love most about it. Here's what they told me.


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