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See also: last week's Development page.

Development tools


The Linux JDK Porting Team has announced the availability of version 1.1.6v5 of the Linux JDK, promising lots of wonderful bug fixes. Check out Steve Byrne's post for all the details. Levente Farkas quickly followed the announcement with rpms for the new version.

Albrecht Kleine was convinced to release the latest snapshot of tya as TYA 1.1. Albrecht describes TYA as a JIT compiler designed as add-on for the Linux x86 Blackdown port 1.1.6.

alphaWorks put out a press releasecovering a TFTP server for Java, and new JavaBeans.


Salon Magazine ran a lengthy article about Larry Wall, winner of this year's "Free Software award"; check it out over here.


A Python Consortium is being formed to fund further development of the Python language. This group seems to be modeled on the old X Consortium, which drove the development of the X window system. They are looking for corporate members, see Guido's announcement for more.

The LLNL PyGraphics documentation has been updated. It is now in Acrobat 3 format.


Version 1.1 of the SAGE Profiler has been announced. Sage is a run-time code analyzer for Tcl and Tk applications. The latest version contains fixes, tweaks, pre-compiled libraries and support for an optional C loadable library to speed up sage processing.

October 15, 1998



Development projects

The Open Group has issued a call for papers for inclusion in a new Source Book on the State of the Unix System. One of their list of potential topics is "The impact of freeware and Open Source (TM) on the industry", which certainly deserves a paper or two on the impact of Linux, GNU and other free software. (Credit to Matthew Benjamin)

Is anybody interested in Ratfor for Linux? Is anybody interested in maintaining it? If you don't know what Ratfor is, you can assume that you're not interested. For the rest of you, Craig Burley (creator of the GNU F77 compiler) is looking for people interested in working on the Ratfor preprocessor.

High Availability Linux

One of the press releases in our commerce section covers High Availability commercial software, now available from RSi Solutions.

In addition, there is another product in beta being produced by RodaGroup. No official information is available yet, but this post and this folloupfrom Richard Sharpe provide a lead on the product.


Debian has joined Red Hat in a stance against the KDE license. Note that in both cases, the decision not to ship KDE with the distribution was taken not because of the free software versus non-free, but because, in reviewing the Qt license and the GPL under which the KDE is shipped, they felt they could not legally include KDE. Much as you might expect, the KDE team disagrees with their interpretation of the GPL and the impact of the combination of the Qt and GPL licenses.

Debian has asked the KDE team for the release of KDE under a license in which distribution of a binary version of KDE with specific permission to link KDE with Qt without the GPL appying to Qt. Of course, the difficulty is that multiple authors are involved with KDE and getting this license change from each one will be work.

Note that other software on Debian has cropped up with similar problems. Lyx is another GPL'd package that links to a non-free library, libforms. After contact with the Lyx authors, a written statement has been issued giving adequate permission for distributing lyx, so it appears that it will be able to stay.

It is strongly to be hoped (and rumored to be happening) that KDE authors will move ahead to provide the written change/assurance that Debian has requested. This will remove any impediment to shipping KDE with any Linux distribution, giving Linux users the chance to choose KDE, which is the most full-featured choice available now, or GNOME, which is rapidly developing, but not as mature. It will also provide an opportunity to prove or disprove the contentions that the decisions not to ship KDE by Debian and Red Hat were motivated by politics rather than legal issues.


Jim Cape has released an updated Netscape Wishlist, with new wishes that have come in over the past six weeks, plus a What's New item and some other reoganization. Here is the website for the page.

The latest Mozilla FAQ is now available.

From the Jazilla folks, we see a rough draftof the Jazilla Developer FAQ is up. The Jazilla Newbie FAQ has been updated as well.


Cees de Groot has run all current HOWTO's through the Linuxdoc->DocBook converter that will be bundled with the upcoming release of SGMLtools 2.0, both as a "proof-of-concept" and to encourage HOWTO authors to start preparations for the conversion.


Douglas Ridgway has proposed the creation of new mailing lists for Wine. Currently, all discussion, questions, etc., is carried on in comp.emulators.ms-windows.wine.

Doug wrote us to let us know that Wine is moving to a CVS based development model, the mailing lists will go with the CVS tree and information on the changes can be found at Wine headquarters.


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