linuxmint-300x274As the years roll-by, every new update of Linux Mint impresses me more. Other desktop operating systems, such as Microsoft's Windows 8 may abandon the tried-and-true windows, icons, menus, and pointer (WIMP) desktop metaphor.  Others, such as Ubuntu with Unity try to keep some of the WIMP interface while expanding it for tablets and smartphones, but the Ubuntu-based Mint, with Cinnamon and MATE, has stayed true to the WIMP interface. As far as I'm concerned the latest version, Linux Mint 15, Olivia, is now not merely the best Linux desktop, it's the best desktop operating system of all.

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Until this year, the astronauts who worked on board the International Space Station used Windows XP laptops. Now there's word that Windows XP has been discontinued on the ISS in favor of a version of Linux.

spacestation
ExtremeTech.com reports that NASA and the United Space Alliance made the decision to switch from Windows XP to the Linux-based Debian 6 OS so that they could make updates and patches to the laptops on their schedule. Keith Chuvala of the of the United Space Alliance stated, "So if we needed to patch, adjust or adapt, we could." The Linux Foundation is offering to train the astronauts on the ISS on how to use the new Debian 6 OS on their laptops.

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The Debian Linux distribution isn't a ground-breaking Linux. If you want a cutting-edge distribution, Fedora Linux is the one for you. After all, Debian 7 uses the over-a-year old Linux 3.2 kernel as its basis while Linux 3.9 is the newest release. On the other hand, if what you want is a stable, well-tested distribution than Debian will fit your needs

debianeye
That said, Debian 7.0 boasts many new features while including many older ones. For example, besides adding additional CPU support for the IBM System z mainframe and ARMv7. Debian still supports obsolete architectures as MIPS and PowerPC. If you want to keep an old system running Linux, you should still look at Debian first.

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linux insideThe latest version of the Linux kernel has been released – bringing with it support for SSD caching and a performance boost for some server workloads.
The 3.9 release, made available by Linus Torvalds on Sunday, offers various performance enhancements, new features and additional driver support.

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Ubuntu 13.04 goes on general release tomorrow – bringing with it improvements to support the open source OS' transformation into a platform that runs across phones, tablets, PCs and TVs.
The release demonstrates consistently faster boot speeds than earlier versions — down to about 40 seconds on Intel and AMD-based Acer Veriton desktop machines — shrinks memory usage by as much as 50MB, reduces image size and cuts power consumption, according to Canonical, the company behind Ubuntu.

ubuntu shuttleworth tablet

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It's no secret that GNU/Linux is being used by the Hollywood studios to create block-busters. Pixar is working on OpenSubdiv, a new open source library that implements high performance subdivision surface drawing and evaluation on modern GPU and massively parallel CPU architectures.

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ubuntu squareThe Ubuntu flavor of Linux has received a major endorsement from Dell with its announcement that it will offer the OS as an option for its Alienware X51 gaming rig.
The diminuitive PC starts at just $599 for a system with an Intel Core i3-3220 processor, 6GB of RAM, 1TB hard drive, and Nvidia GeForce GTX 645 graphics. (Of course, you can load on the upgraded components for additional cash.) Previously only available as a Windows system, the X51 now can be equipped with Ubuntu Linux 12.04.

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ubuntu.tuxUbuntu 13.04 “Raring Ringtail” may have technically hit beta 1 a few weeks ago, but at the time there was no beta release to test and try out. Rather, the only variations with actual beta images to see were Edubuntu, Kubuntu, Lubuntu, UbuntuKylin, Ubuntu Cloud, Ubuntu Studio, and Xubuntu.
Users hungry for a taste of the next main release of Canonical's popular Linux distribution can now get their fill, however, thanks to a second beta release that just came out, complete with software to download and take for a spin.

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gnome logoLinux fans may recall the GNOME project's announcement late last fall that it was planning to drop its "fallback" mode aimed at systems incapable of 3D rendering and to deliver a brand-new "classic" mode instead.
Sure enough, last week saw the launch of GNOME 3.8, and there among numerous major new features and enhancements was the promised GNOME Classic traditionally flavored desktop.

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google-logo4Google have just announced a new pledge in the "Open Patent Non-Assertion" (OPN) agreement, a new initiative that means they will not sue developers, distributors or users of open source software which uses Google's patents. Google has identified 10 patents in relation to MapReduce, "a computing model for processing large data sets," which can now be used by anyone as long as the software is open source.
There is a caveat: if Google is "attacked" first, they will use the patents offensively. Google still hopes that others will follow their example: "We hope the OPN Pledge will serve as a model for the industry, and we’re encouraging other patent holders to adopt the pledge or a similar initiative."

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