Mozilla has a new logo, the latest in the company's effort to rebrand itself as a modern technology outfit worthy of your attention. It's no surprise that the company reaching to stay relevant in the face of plunging usage of its key product, the internet browser Firefox. Somewhere out there is a designer who still uses Adobe Pagemaker and is very proud of their work on this logo. The rest of us are wondering where the hell the Mozilla we used to know has gone.
Tagged With open source
About a year and a half ago, I discovered this $US12 "Gongkai" mobile phone (pictured above) in the markets of Shenzhen, China. My most striking impression was that Chinese entrepreneurs had relatively unfettered access to cutting-edge technology, enabling start-ups to innovate while bootstrapping. Meanwhile, Western entrepreneurs often find themselves trapped in a spiderweb of IP frameworks, spending more money on lawyers than on tooling.
If you could go online, select a home, print the plans for free and build it yourself for less than $US80,000 in a few days, would you? That's the dream behind WikiHouse, an open source home design project that just finished construction of its fourth prototype, a two-storey home that snaps together in just a few days.
A decade ago, OpenStreetMap launched as a free, open-source alternative to the other mapping tools you may encounter on the internet. Turns out that the collaborative experiment worked exceptionally well, and thanks to a new site, you can see for yourself how the Wikipedia of mapping has covered the whole planet.
There's no denying your car's dashboard is pretty dumb, which is why Microsoft, Apple and Google are all trying to smarten it up. But there's also a new open-source alternative, in the shape of Automotive Grade Linux.
Your very own Wall-E? It may not be too futuristic a prospect if Intel has anything to do with it. The company just showed off a DIY kit at the Code Conference that will let you 3D-print your very own robot for $US1600.
It's official: the last holdout for the open web has fallen. Flanked on all sides by Google, Microsoft, Opera, and (it appears) Safari's support and promotion of the EME DRM-in-HTML standard, Mozilla is giving in to pressure from Hollywood, Netflix, et al, and will be implementing its own third-party version of DRM. It will be rolled out in Desktop Firefox later this year.
If you've been thinking about getting started on the rocket project that's been on your mind for ages, now is a good time to get serious. Next week, NASA will release a massive software catalogue with over 1000 projects. It's not the first time the space agency's released code, but it is the first time they have made it so easy.
Every time I tell someone about OpenStreetMap, they inevitably ask "Why not use Google Maps?". From a practical standpoint, it's a reasonable question, but ultimately this is not just a matter of practicality, but of what kind of society we want to live in. I discussed this topic in a 2008 talk on OpenStreetMap I gave at the first MappingDC meeting. Here are many of same concepts, but expanded.
OpenStreetMap has been diving deep into its historical data recently, but this visualisation is particularly amazing: it shows the work of all the individual users who studiously update the mapping service.
IKEA is not the only place you can get a build-your-own-furniture puzzle. If you're into the whole open source thing, there's a new repository of completely free furniture designs that are ripe for the downloadin'. The only hurdle? You have to actually make the pieces before you can put 'em together.
Game Of Thrones is such a double-edged sword for HBO: it must be great to have one of the world's most popular shows, but it must be so frustrating to have everyone pirate it and have no way to stop it. This morning, however, HBO might have just stumbled upon the greatest anti-piracy weapon: take-down notices aimed squarely at VLC Media Player.