The call for participation and registration opened for LinuxCon today signaling the beginning of planning for the 2nd Annual LinuxCon.

To recap on some of the highlights of LinuxCon 2009, which took place in Portland last September, we brought you:

  • A fantastic line-up of speakers including Linus Torvalds, Mark Shuttleworth, Bob Sutor, and many more industry luminaries
  • A packed program delivering content to a diverse audience of business, operations and developers
  • A Technology Showcase & Lounge providing attendees and exhibitors the opportunity to network and learn from each other
  • Exciting evening events including the Intel-sponsored LinuxCon/LPC reception and the Bowling for Penguins Fundraiser
  • The added value of co-located events include the Novell SUSE workshop, LDAPCon and the Linux Plumbers Conference

Check out our video highlights of LinuxCon 2009 here!

How is LinuxCon different than other events?  In a number of ways.  This is an event specific to the Linux community, but within that, it encompasses all matters Linux.  Other events specifically target certain groups in the ecosystem, but LinuxCon is the only event that really brings together a diverse group of all types of industry leaders and contributors – from business executives and end users, to developers (both in the kernel and out), to the systems administrators and senior technology operations leaders. This is the one event the community can attend each year to meet face-to-face and collaborate with all the community players.  In addition to innovative technical content and a great mix of attendees, LinuxCon also offers an unmatched fun, vibrant and intimate atmosphere that is extremely conducive to attendee networking and collaboration.

If you pick one Linux event to attend this year, LinuxCon should be it – you will not be disappointed!

While we could not have been happier with the overwhelming positive response from last year’s inaugural event, we are amped to step up our game and make this year’s LinuxCon a bigger and bolder experience for attendees.

In addition to fantastic, streamlined content geared again towards a variety of attendees (this is the conference for all matters Linux after all!), prepare yourselves for some exciting new speakers, a host of new attendees to network and collaborate with, and some fun additions to add to your conference experience!

Plus, we are happy to announce the co-location of a number of mini-summits/conferences this year, including KVM Forum, Linux Storage & Filesystems Workshop, Virtual Memory Mini-Summit, the Wireless Summit, Power Management Summit and the Linux Security Summit, plus more to be announced.

The registration fee is only $300 through April 15th, so REGISTER NOW.

Stay tuned for more information on all things LinuxCon – and get ready to have a great week in Boston this August!

Article Source Jim Zemlin’s Blog
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Yesterday I watched Apple’s Steve Jobs unveil the iPad. Jobs clearly can create revolutionary products; he can also produce spin like no one else. Yesterday was no exception.

His main message about the iPad was “a magical device at a breakthrough price.” He repeated this many times throughout the pitch and twice at the end. This phrase demands an honest response: how will Linux-based devices compete with the iPad?

You might expect the Executive Director of the Linux Foundation to state with full confidence that Linux-based competitors will crush the iPad. Linux *can* compete in one area. $499 – $829 may be a breakthrough price for Apple and their margins, but it’s no comparison to the price competition Linux-based devices can offer. Vendors creating Tablets, slates, phones or other devices do not have to pay the per-unit pricing of other platforms. Apple products command a premium and Jobs will never cannibalize their pricing power. While I do believe that Linux can compete, and win, on price, I’m left to question: what about the magic?

Apple is unmatched at creating a cohesive experience. While many question the revolutionary impact of the iPad, Apple’s consistent user experience is far closer to magical than most things currently running Linux. It may be easy for us to bash Microsoft every other week, but Apple is a true competitor. They have the polish, the focus on usability and ease of use, the application and hardware integration all to make using their technology a seamless and elegant part of your day, instead of a constant struggle with technology. The Linux ecosystem needs to do better competing on “magic.”

This is not to say that there aren’t projects and products in the Linux that are innovative and focused on creating a magical user experience. A few that spring to mind:

– The clutter UI project is advancing the state of the art in Linux-based desktops
– Android-based phones like the Droid or the Nexus One are getting close to the “magic” of the iPhone
– Moblin-based notebooks and tablet devices that are in development
– The Ubuntu projects recent focus on usability and user experience
– The Palm Pre and their Linux-based smart phones
– Nokia’s Maemo project and the N900

The issue is that while all of these are incredible efforts, Steve Jobs is hardly standing still. We have to do better.

With all this talk about “magic,” there is another important element to consider: freedom. Apple is the most locked down closed system imaginable, from the software ladened with DRM, all the way down to the custom silicon they use for their Apple A4 chip. Commercial success is important, but freedom is also important.

Where the Ipad will really impact Linux-based devices is in the embedded space. Amazon Kindle? It doesn’t look so hot if Apple gets a distribution deal with enough publishers. (Even if they don’t, they will likely freeze the market enough in the meantime to seriously dent Kindle’s numbers.) GPS providers who use Linux? They were already under seige from smart phones but this doesn’t help.

So my question to you: How can the Linux community get better at creating magic? While we’re strong on price, we still have a ways to go to compete. The Linux Foundation isn’t just going to complain about the need for more “Magic” on the Linux platform – we are going to do something about it. Stay tuned over the next few weeks for big news on just how we will accomplish this. In the mean time I would love to hear all of your ideas.

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The Linux Foundation today announced a free Linux training Webinar series and an expanded set of courses and course locations for its existing training program. There is no coincidence that this shortly follows the Foundation’s recent jobs board announcement.

Linux is experiencing significant growth in every category of computing. The new products and systems based on Linux you see announced every day will be deployed for a very long time. A shortage of qualified people to support this ecosystem could potentially slow Linux growth.

In order to keep Linux growing at its current record pace, the Linux Foundation and its members have made a strategic decision to address this increase in demand for Linux professionals with programs such as the jobs board, the new training offerings and, as always, its fellowship program.

The jobs board, announced just two weeks ago, connects job seekers and employers by providing an important online forum on Linux.com. Anyone can find the best and brightest Linux talent or the ideal job opportunity.

The Linux Training program
goes deeper. It brings in the Linux community’s most highly regarded technical leadership to deliver education about Linux that can’t be accessed anywhere else. How do you get involved with the Linux development process? How do you use Git? Where can you get more information on Linux performance tuning? The free Linux Training Webinar Series answers all these questions and many more.

The fellowship program
employs the best and brightest Linux talent in order to allow them to focus on important development work while gaining valuable experience for their next move. Ted Ts’o is the latest example of a Linux Foundation fellow who spent two years contributing to the Linux Standard Base and has recently landed a new position at Google.

Red Hat, Novell, Canonical and LPI each offer important training programs, but these are still are not enough to keep up with the growing market demand for Linux talent. The Linux Foundation’s is unique in its ability to provide classes direct from the source, the developers working on Linux today. It’s also a vendor-neutral forum and offers coursework that isn’t tailored towards any one distribution or vendor; rather, the classes are focused on increasing Linux skills that can be applied across any employer or vendor.

The demand for Linux related talent is not a short-term trend and, based on recent data, is counter to current unemployment rates. Investing in this area addresses both a short-term need for talent and a long- term need for innovative and creative people at the top of their game.

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The Linux community is a pyramid. The base is comprised of millions of Linux users and system administrators. The second level is programmers who work with Linux; some of those developers contribute to the kernel, many do not. The top rung of the pyramid is the thousand or so kernel developers and maintainers who actively contribute to the kernel or other projects that make up a distribution. These are the leaders whose code and ideas shape the system that users and sys admins work with everyday.

One of the goals of the Linux Foundation is to make those people on the top rung accessible to the base. You see it with many of our programs: LinuxCon, Linux.com, the Japan Linux Symposium and our training program. Today we are pleased to announce an expansion of that program and the launch of a free webinar program that connects Linux users, developers and sys admins to the leaders of the Linux community. Users can now receive free Linux training on such topics as the new Linux filesystem Btrfs, Git or Linux performance tuning.

While these developers are always accessible via the kernel mailing list, this format gives a different kind of access and learning opportunity. Let’s face it: not all users and developers can attend in- person events or pay for a training course.

The free Linux training webinar series features notable technical leaders from the Linux community. Confirmed webinars include:

• “An Introduction to Git,” by kernel maintainer and TAB chair James Bottomley;

• “Linux System Troubleshooting and Tuning” and “Linux Administration 101,” by Linux author and community manager Joe “Zonker” Brockmeier;

• “How to Work with the Linux community,” by LWN.net editor and kernel developer Jon Corbet;

• “A Linux Filesystem Overview,” by kernel developer Christoph Hellwig;• “Btrfs: An Intro and Update” to the new file system for Linux, by project lead and TAB member Chris Mason; and

• “Linux Performance Tuning,” by North America’s first kernel developer Ted Ts’o.

You can sign up here. We are lucky that these leaders are taking time out of their busy schedules to do this.I’m also happy to announce we have expanded our training offering with new classes and new geographies served. Our training program is exploding right now, just like the demand for Linux talent. (Obviously not a coincidence!) We hope you take advantage of this new program. Please send me feedback on topics or instructors you’d be interested in hearing from. You can reach me at amanda at the domain above.

Open source software development is innovative and exciting. It has produced the software that runs the internet; Linux, Apache, Firefox, and so much more. In addition to being technically innovative it also has turned business models on their head and introduced new software licensing and IP sharing concepts.

As we continue to innovate at the technical level it is equally important to discuss innovative legal concepts to allow the unfettered deployment and development of free and open source software.

To that end, on February 10, 2010 the Linux Foundation and the Open Source Initiative will host a Strategic Planning Session for lawyers active in support or adoption of free and open source software. At this meeting our legal community will consider what legal issues we anticipate may arise and what foundations we might be able to lay to support continued rise of free and open source software.

The purpose of the meeting is to collectively look forward and to consider new issues, new venues, and new technologies.

The event will be open to qualified lawyers who are active in the field of open source development or commercial deployment. The session will include panel discussions and updates, but the entire day will be more of a conversation than a lecture. We want people to come prepared to participate. Some of the topics that have been suggested already include: education of the community on patent matters; the Risk Grid and the Linking Project underway at FSFE; lessons learned from the license proliferation discussion and other comet-like issue phenomena in the open source ecosystem; how FOSS and commercial interests will co-exist and change each other in the longer term; and updates on FOSSBazaar and the SFLC activities. Participants will be asked to provide their suggestions for topics to discuss in the registration process and we hope that you will be thoughtful in your response. We will not identify the source of any topics posed for consideration without permission. We will also have several seminars by engineers on certain technical issues which are important to legal analysis.

Date: February 10, 2010

Time: 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Location: DLA Piper LLP, 2000 University Avenue, East Palo Alto, California 94303-2214

Costs: There will be a cover charge of $30 to cover catering costs for this event but there will be no conference fee.

To request an invitation register here:

Open Source Legal Invitation Request

Your registration will be reviewed and you will be notified if accepted. Please register early as space is limited.

Last week, David Coursey reported that Microsoft entertainment and devices boss Robbie Bach made the prediction in an analyst briefing that Linux on mobile will lose. Why? It’s choice is a bad thing for customers and that there is too much Linux in the mobile marketplace

By Bach’s count there are 17 variants of Linux available on mobile phones. He sees this as a bad thing for customers. We, unsurprisingly, see this as a bad thing for Microsoft.

Technology markets are shaped by momentum. When a company bets on a technology, it’s not a one-time decision. They must live with that choice for years. Ecosystems around technology are as important as the technology itself, since you need partners and developers to actually make something of it. This is why I take issue with his pronouncement that Linux will not do as well as Microsoft mobile. He may have a point that individual variants of Linux may come and go. We will likely see moves both up and down for specific versions of a mobile OS using Linux. We’ve seen it in the enterprise distribution market.

But Linux as the underlying platform of such mobile offerings as Android, Moblin and many more is growing exponentially, and precisely because it affords this choice. Palm, Motorola and others have jumped ship from Windows Mobile to Linux-based offerings in recent years. LG is now using Android on 50% of its handsets. According to Gartner Group, Windows Mobile’s market share fell to 7.9 percent in the third quarter of 2009 down from 11.1 percent the same quarter of last year.

The problem with Microsoft’s Windows Mobile is not just the technology, it’s the business model. Bach dismissed the recent decline in marketshare Microsoft has been experiencing as “not a business problem per se,” but people I know in the mobile market disagree.

Here’s why:

  • With Windows Mobile, carriers and handset manufactuers have to pay Microsoft a per-device charge. With Linux-based platforms this does not exist.
  • Windows Mobile has draconian branding and licensing restrictions. Basically Microsoft wants to “own the glass.” With Linux you have a multiple of ways to brand and market your product, making it your product. Linux is the base of many different distributions because of the flexibility it offers.

Is working with Linux more complex than with Windows Mobile? Probably, since with Linux carriers and hand set manufacturers actually have to make a choice in what technology they use and how they brand their products, instead of getting the technology and pricing dictated to them from Redmond. The current consolidation to Linux on mobile is far less complex than just a few years ago when hand set manufacturers had to build from scratch their own OS if they didn’t want to give up a big percentage of their margins to Microsoft. Linux has given them the flexibility they need while making the building of a handset and ecosystem development simpler. Is it more complex than the one size fits all approach of Microsoft? Definitely. But it’s also more profitable.

I suppose if he truly believes choice is a bad thing, he may truly believe Linux will lose, but unfortunately the market momentum and adoption numbers are proving quite the opposite.

We just announced our event line-up for 2010 and the Call for Papers for CollabSummit. I’m very excited we’re offering the continuation of events that have been with us for awhile (CollabSummit, Kernel Summit) along with the second year of  LinuxCon.

This year LinuxCon will be held in Boston. Maybe people don’t realize that Boston is a hot-bed of the Linux and open source communities, with companies such as Red Hat and Novell head-quartered in the area. Besides Portland and San Francisco, there is probably no greater center of open source development than Boston.

I also wanted to point out that there are many great events held throughout the year by other organizations and community groups. LCA, going on right now, is one of my favorites. (I wish I was there!) You can find a great list of these events on the LWN.net event listing as well as on our own calendar list.

We are hosting a variety of events this year, and I often get asked: what event should I attend? Here’s my short hand for each one of our events. 

Linux Foundation Collaboration Summit

April 14 – 16, 2010

San Francisco, Calif.

This event is an exclusive, invitation-only summit where key Linux stakeholders meet face-to-face to advance and create initiatives that address the most pressing opportunities for Linux today. http://events.linuxfoundation.org/events/collaboration-summit/

Summit CFP submissions are due February 19, 2010 by midnight PST and can be submitted online at: http://events.linuxfoundation.org/events/collaboration-summit/cfp.

This event is where Linux Foundation members and community participants meet to advance Linux. It’s for those working on workgroups (like Moblin or Open Printing) or in projects that need cross-industry collaboration. Real work gets done here, so if you’re new to Linux, a conference like LinuxCon is probably a better fit for you.

Linux Foundation End User Summit

October 25, 2010

Jersey City, NJ

Another invitation-only event, the Linux Foundation’s End User Summit brings together senior kernel leadership with the C-level executives who are managing Linux in the largest most dynamic companies in the world today. In its third year, this event helps to close a “communications loop” to advance Linux development to meet everyone’s goals. To request an invitation, please visit: http://events.linuxfoundation.org/events/end-user-summit

If you run a datacenter using Linux, this is for you. This is all about connecting end users and kernel developers in an intimate setting. Again, real work gets done here, not education.  In the past two years we’ve had a virtual who’s who of operations executives from Wall Street, healthcare, insurance, government and other industries.

LinuxCon

August 10-12, 2010

Boston, Mass.

LinuxCon is North America’s premiere conference for all matters Linux. The event will bring together community and business leadership as well as up and coming developers to attend sessions produced by the community for the community. LinuxCon will be preceded this year with a variety of “mini-summits” on August 8 and 9, 2010, including the Linux Storage & Filesystems Workshop, the Wireless Mini-Summit and the Bluetooth Summit. http://events.linuxfoundation.org/events/linuxcon

This is a conference, meaning attendees can learn from the best in a relaxed setting. A lot of work gets done, but mainly at the mini-conferences and in the social hours. We have content for advanced developers, as well as operations people and the business/legal side. This event is the “big tent” event for Linux in North America so it’s also a great place to connect with people in the community, potential customers and partners.

Japan Linux Symposium

September 27 – 29, 2010

Tokyo, Japan

The Japan Linux Symposium is the leading Linux conference in Asia Pacific and brings together developers, administrators, users, community managers and industry experts from across the globe. http://events.linuxfoundation.org/events/japan-linux-symposium

Great event for technical users and developers who live in Asia. Very successful in its first year.

Linux Kernel Summit

November 1 – 2, 2010

The Linux Foundation will again host the annual gathering of the world’s leading kernel developers to discuss the state of the kernel and to plan the next development cycle.?http://events.linuxfoundation.org/events/linux-kernel-summit

This is only for you if you get an invite. Only the most prolific and most important kernel developers in this small conference.

To get more information about Linux Foundation events, and to register, please visit: http://events.linuxfoundation.org/

This is the first chapter in my new cybersecurity eBook in which you’ll meet Frank, our erstwhile hero, and get your first clue about the tangled train of events yet to unfold:

On the morning of Sunday, December 12, a morbidly obese Corgi named Lily was sniffing a tree on 16sh street, in the Columbia Heights neighborhood of Washington, D.C.  A cold, insistent drizzle was falling, but Lily didn’t care, because Lily was sniffing at her favorite tree.  Indeed, the meager processing power of Lily’s brain was wholly occupied with sampling the mysterious scents wafting up from the damp earth, for this was the favorite tree of every other dog in the neighborhood. 

Something more annoying than the rain was nagging at the edge of her senses, though.  At last the sounds began to penetrate…

Read the rest here

Those that know me know that I firmly believe that there is a Monty Python vignette, or at least a catchphrase, for every occasion. And on this occasion, that catchphrase is, “And now for something completely different!”

How completely different, might you ask, as if on cue? Glad you asked. Quite completely different. More specifically, I’m in the process of writing a cybersecurity novel called The Alexandria Project, and I’m going to share it here in serial form, in the grand tradition of yesteryear, when authors like Charles Dickens presented their latest works in weekly or monthly (often cliff hanging) chapters.

Except in this case, there will be a few twists. For one, in between installments you’ll be able to follow Frank Aversego, our erstwhile cybersecurity hero, on Twitter. He’ll share his mordant view of the day’s events (real and fictional) with you, and perhaps provide the occasional clue as to what might happen.

Read More

With Linux powering nearly every mobile device that hits the market, the demand for Linux-related jobs is rapidly growing despite national unemployment figures. Combine this with the ongoing success of companies such as Red Hat and it’s easy to see why demand for Linux professionals is on the rise.

That’s why today Linux.com is adding an important function that will connect job seekers, employers, and recruiters. Linux.com is the community-meeting place for all matters Linux and is the destination for millions of Linux professionals every month; it is the natural forum for the industry’s most comprehensive jobs board.

The JobThread Network agrees and has partnered with Linux.com to host a worldwide selection of Linux job openings. So, employers can tap both the millions of people that visit Linux.com and the JobThread Network’s more than 50 niche publishing sites that generate 50 million impressions and reach more than 9.8 million unique visitors every month.

Linux.com community member profiles will illustrate their knowledge and contributions to the community and can connect employers to their LinkedIn profiles and resumes. Employers and recruiters can easily and quickly find the best Linux gurus for the best positions.

Jobs have been the collective focus of much of the US population over the past two years and with the national unemployment rate stuck at 10 percent, it’s hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel. But the good news is that IT could be the industry that leads out of the dark abyss. And Linux is a particularly lucrative skill to possess.