Google Realtime Live Updates on Egypt Yemen Tunisia Jordan..

Using Google RealTime, a small icon on the left margin, you can monitor the latest uprisings. Apparently you can still get shot in most of the world to ask for freedom. What a trillion dollars of industrial arms complex could not do in Iraq or Afghanistan, hackers at Wikileaks, Bloggers in Middle East and Media people at Al Jazzera are doing right now. I am probably too young in 1989 when communists fell, but watching dictators fall by people power than external arms is good, no.

Now if only a few more people could listen to some Chinese Democracy

LibreOffice Stable Release launched

Non Oracle Open Office completes important milestone- from the press release

The Document Foundation launches LibreOffice 3.3

The first stable release of the free office suite is available for download

The Internet, January 25, 2011 – The Document Foundation launches LibreOffice 3.3, the first stable release of the free office suite developed by the community. In less than four months, the number of developers hacking LibreOffice has grown from less than twenty in late September 2010, to well over one hundred today. This has allowed us to release ahead of the aggressive schedule set by the project.

Not only does it ship a number of new and original features, LibreOffice 3.3 is also a significant achievement for a number of reasons:

– the developer community has been able to build their own and independent process, and get up and running in a very short time (with respect to the size of the code base and the project’s strong ambitions);

– thanks to the high number of new contributors having been attracted into the project, the source code is quickly undergoing a major clean-up to provide a better foundation for future development of LibreOffice;

– the Windows installer, which is going to impact the largest and most diverse user base, has been integrated into a single build containing all language versions, thus reducing the size for download sites from 75 to 11GB, making it easier for us to deploy new versions more rapidly and lowering the carbon footprint of the entire infrastructure.

Caolán McNamara from RedHat, one of the developer community leaders, comments, “We are excited: this is our very first stable release, and therefore we are eager to get user feedback, which will be integrated as soon as possible into the code, with the first enhancements being released in February. Starting from March, we will be moving to a real time-based, predictable, transparent and public release schedule, in accordance with Engineering Steering Committee’s goals and users’ requests”. The LibreOffice development roadmap is available at http://wiki.documentfoundation.org/ReleasePlan

LibreOffice 3.3 brings several unique new features. The 10 most-popular among community members are, in no particular order:

  1. the ability to import and work with SVG files;
  2. an easy way to format title pages and their numbering in Writer;
  3. a more-helpful Navigator Tool for Writer;
  4. improved ergonomics in Calc for sheet and cell management;
  5. and Microsoft Works and Lotus Word Pro document import filters.

In addition, many great extensions are now bundled, providing

PDF import,

a slide-show presenter console,

a much improved report builder, and more besides.

A more-complete and detailed list of all the new features offered by LibreOffice 3.3 is viewable on the following web page: http://www.libreoffice.org/download/new-features-and-fixes/

LibreOffice 3.3 also provides all the new features of OpenOffice.org 3.3, such as new custom properties handling; embedding of standard PDF fonts in PDF documents; new Liberation Narrow font; increased document protection in Writer and Calc; auto decimal digits for “General” format in Calc; 1 million rows in a spreadsheet; new options for CSV import in Calc; insert drawing objects in Charts; hierarchical axis labels for Charts; improved slide layout handling in Impress; a new easier-to-use print interface; more options for changing case; and colored sheet tabs in Calc. Several of these new features were contributed by members of the LibreOffice team prior to the formation of The Document Foundation.

LibreOffice hackers will be meeting at FOSDEM in Brussels on February 5 and 6, and will be presenting their work during a one-day workshop on February 6, with speeches and hacking sessions coordinated by several members of the project.

The home of The Document Foundation is at http://www.documentfoundation.org

The home of LibreOffice is at http://www.libreoffice.org where the download page has been redesigned by the community to be more user-friendly.

*** About The Document Foundation

The Document Foundation has the mission of facilitating the evolution of the OOo Community into a new, open, independent, and meritocratic organization within the next few months. An independent Foundation is a better reflection of the values of our contributors, users and supporters, and will enable a more effective, efficient and transparent community. TDF will protect past investments by building on the achievements of the first decade, will encourage wide participation within the community, and will co-ordinate activity across the community.

*** Media Contacts for TDF

Florian Effenberger (Germany)

Mobile: +49 151 14424108 – E-mail: floeff@documentfoundation.org

Olivier Hallot (Brazil)

Mobile: +55 21 88228812 – E-mail: olivier.hallot@documentfoundation.org

Charles H. Schulz (France)

Mobile: +33 6 98655424 – E-mail: charles.schulz@documentfoundation.org

Italo Vignoli (Italy)

Mobile: +39 348 5653829 – E-mail: italo.vignoli@documentfoundation.org

Libre Office Marketing Event FOSDEM

Things begin building up for LibreOffice- and here is the inaugural event.

Source- LibreOffice Wiki

 

LibreOffice at FOSDEM – Call for Papers

Contents

[hide]

Call for Papers

2011: Brussels, FOSDEM.(2011-02-05 – 2011-02-06).. Your first chance ever to give a talk for LibreOffice at this great open source event… obviously you don’t want to miss this!

Do you want to share your experience in starting to hack the code, or tell about the tweaks in your build environment, talk about the code changes you have done or those that you prepare, or do you want to share insight on your QA work? Simply submit your proposal at this page.

We really like you to share in the way that fits you best, be it 5, 10 or up to 30 minutes 🙂

It might well be that we’ll have to choose between the various proposals, after all FOSDEM is only two days 😉 So please give a clear description of your talk, goals and target audience. For details, see the outline that is provided at the wiki.

FOSDEM is a free conference to attend, and we will try to seek sponsorship. But funding is limited, so please only request it if you cannot attend otherwise, and we will try our best to support you.

Thanks a lot,
TDF Steering Committee

More info

http://wiki.documentfoundation.org/Marketing/Events/Fosdem2011
For questions mail info@documentfoundation.org
Discussions with developers and code hackers take place on libreoffice@lists.freedesktop.org

 

Dataists shake up R community with a rocking contest

Flipboard
Image by Johan Larsson via Flickr

Newly created Dataists are creating waves on Hacker News and beyond with their innovative contest- A Recommendation Engine for R Packages.

Not only is the contest useful, it is likely to teach R Users some data hacking skills, as well as the basics of creating a GitHub Project.

Read more here-http://www.dataists.com/2010/10/using-data-tools-to-find-data-tools-the-yo-dawg-of-data-hacking/

For that reason, we’ve settled on the more manageable question, “which packages are most often installed by normal R users?”

This last question could potentially be answered in a variety of ways. Our current approach uses a convenience sample of installation data that we’ve collected from volunteers in the R community, who kindly agreed to send us a list of the packages they have on their systems. We’ve anonymized this data and compiled a set of metadata-based predictors that allow us to predict the installation probabilities quite well. We’re releasing all of our current work, including the data we have and all of the code we’ve used so far for our exploratory analyses. The contest itself will go live on Kaggle on Sunday and will end four months from Sunday on February 10, 2011. The rules, prizes and official data sets are all described below.

Rules and Prizes

To win the contest, you need to predict the probability that a user U has a package P installed on their system for every pair, (U, P). We’ll assess your performance using ROC methods, which will be evaluated against a held out test data set. The winning team will receive 3 UseR! books of their choosing. In order to win the contest, you’ll have to provide your analysis code to us by creating a fork of our GitHub repository. You’ll also be required to provide a written description of your approach. We’re asking for so much openness from the winning team because we want this contest to serve as a stepping stone for the R community. We’re also hoping that enterprising data hackers will extend the lessons learned through this contest to other programming languages.

Extract from-http://www.dataists.com/2010/10/using-data-tools-to-find-data-tools-the-yo-dawg-of-data-hacking/

Read the full article there

Sharing WordPress.com Blog Articles

Suppose you want to customize your blog shares to add one more service (apart from Facebook, Twitter etc)

Here is an example on creating a new share service – We are creating a blog share button for Hacker News at http://news.ycombinator.com/

See screenshot below-

Navigate there – by logging onto your wordpress.com account,

left margin bottom (Settings- Sharing)

Now on Add Service-

We put Service Name as

Hacker News (or you can put it as Y Combinator)

on URL Dropdown

Put it as- Copy and Paste Exactly

http://news.ycombinator.com/submitlink=&t=%post_title%+&u=%post_url%

On Icon URL

http://ycombinator.com/images/yc500.gif

Note there is no need for an Excerpt if you adding URL to Hacker News -so we can put it as blank

And now share all you want, wordpress.com hackers 😉

Kill R? Wait a sec

1) Is R efficient? (scripting wise, and performance wise) _ Depends on how you code it- some Packages like foreach can help but basic efficiency come from programmer. XDF formats from Revoscalar -the non open R package further improve programming efficiency

2) Should R be written from scratch?

You got to be kidding- It depends on how you define scratch after 2 million users

This has been done with S, then S Plus and now R.

3) What should be the license of R (if it was made a new)?

GPL license is fine. You need to do a better job of executing the license. Currently interfaces to R exist from SPSS, SAS, KXEN , other companies as well. To my knowledge royalty payments as well as formal code sharing does not agree.

R core needs to do a better job of protecting the work of 2500 package-creators rather than settling for a few snacks at events, sponsorships, Corporate Board Membership for Prof Gentleman, and 4-5 packages donated to it. The only way R developers can currently support their research is write a book (ny Springer mostly)

Eg GGplot and Hmisc are likely to be used more by average corporate user. Do their creators deserve royalty if creators of RevoScalar are getting it?

If some of 2 million users gave 1 $ to R core (compared to 9 million in last round of funding in Revolution Analytics)- you would have enough money to create a 64 bit optimized R for Linux (missing in Enterprise R), Amazon R APIs (like Karim Chine’s efforts), R GUIs (like Rattle’s commercial version) etc etc

The developments are not surprising given that Microsoft and Intel are funding Revolution Analytics http://www.dudeofdata.com/?p=1967

R controversies come and go (this has happened before including the NYT article and shakeup at Revo)

An interesting debate on whether R should be killed to make an upgrade to a more efficient language.

From Tal (creator R Bloggers) and on R help list-

There is currently a (very !) lively discussions happening around the web, surrounding the following topics:
1) Is R efficient? (scripting wise, and performance wise)
2) Should R be written from scratch?
3) What should be the license of R (if it was made a new)?

Very serious people have taken part in the debates so far.  I hope to let you know of the places I came by, so you might be able to follow/participate
in these (IMHO) important discussions.

The discussions started in the response for the following blog post on
Xi’An’s blog:
http://xianblog.wordpress.com/2010/09/06/insane/


Followed by the (short) response post by Ross Ihaka:
http://xianblog.wordpress.com/2010/09/13/simply-start-over-and-build-something-better/


Other discussions started to appear on Andrew Gelman’s blog:
http://www.stat.columbia.edu/~cook/movabletype/archives/2010/09/ross_ihaka_to_r.html

And (many) more responses started to appear in the hackers news website:
http://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=1687054

I hope these discussions will have fruitful results for our community,
Tal

—————-Contact
Details:——————————————————-
Contact me: Tal.Galili@gmail.com |  972-52-7275845
Read me: www.talgalili.com (Hebrew) | www.biostatistics.co.il (Hebrew) |
www.r-statistics.com (English)

My 0 cents ( see it would 2 cents but it;s free)

How NOT to ask Questions/ Comments

I got this great website from Joshua Reich of i2pi

Basically it tells newbies on how to get better effective help online while learning new tech stuff, by lucidly explaining basic community volunteer behaviour.

Citation:http://catb.org/~esr/faqs/smart-questions.html

Rodin_TheThinker

hackers have a reputation for meeting simple questions with what looks like hostility or arrogance. It sometimes looks like we’re reflexively rude to newbies and the ignorant. But this isn’t really true.What we are, unapologetically, is hostile to people who seem to be unwilling to think or to do their own homework before asking questions. People like that are time sinks — they take without giving back, and they waste time we could have spent on another question more interesting and another person more worthy of an answer. We call people like this “losers” (and for historical reasons we sometimes spell it “lusers”).

We realize that there are many people who just want to use the software we write, and who have no interest in learning technical details. For most people, a computer is merely a tool, a means to an end; they have more important things to do and lives to live. We acknowledge that, and don’t expect everyone to take an interest in the technical matters that fascinate us. Nevertheless, our style of answering questions is tuned for people who do take such an interest and are willing to be active participants in problem-solving. That’s not going to change. Nor should it; if it did, we would become less effective at the things we do best.

We’re (largely) volunteers. We take time out of busy lives to answer questions, and at times we’re overwhelmed with them. So we filter ruthlessly. In particular, we throw away questions from people who appear to be losers in order to spend our question-answering time more efficiently, on winners.

Kind of explains why Bloggers delete some comments on  blogs as well 😉

Image Source: wikimedia.org


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