Planet Gnanet

április 26, 2012

Ubuntu Geek

Ubuntu 12.04 (Precise Pangolin) released and download link included

{lang: 'en-GB'}

The Ubuntu team is very pleased to announce the release of Ubuntu 12.04 LTS (Long-Term Support) for Desktop, Server, Cloud, and Core products.

Codenamed “Precise Pangolin”, 12.04 continues Ubuntu’s proud tradition of integrating the latest and greatest open source technologies into a high-quality, easy-to-use Linux distribution. The team has been hard at work through this cycle, introducing a few new features and improving quality control.
Read the rest of Ubuntu 12.04 (Precise Pangolin) released and download link included (182 words)

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2012 április 26, 13:29


Sci-Fi Publisher Tor Ditches DRM For E-Books

First time accepted submitter FBeans writes "'Science fiction publisher Tor UK is dropping digital rights management from its e-books alongside a similar move by its U.S. partners. ... Tor UK, Tor Books and Forge are divisions of Pan Macmillan, which said it viewed the move as an "experiment."' With experiments, come results. Now users can finally read their books across multiple devices such as Amazon's Kindle, Sony Reader, Kobo eReader and Apple's iBooks. Perhaps we will see the *increase* of sales, because the new unrestricted format outweighs the decrease caused by piracy?"

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2012 április 26, 13:29


Ubuntu 12.04 LTS

Az Ubuntu release team nevében Kate Stewart ma bejelentette az Ubuntu 12.04 LTS kiadását Desktop, Server, Cloud és Core változatokban. Részletek a bejelentésben, a whats-new oldalon és a kiadási megjegyzésekben. Letölthető innen.

2012 április 26, 13:20


Univ. of Florida Announces Plan To Save CS Department

New submitter WIGFIELD7458 writes "This appears to be a major change in plans that will save the Computer Science Department. Thanks to everyone in the Gator Nation and beyond for speaking out! The battle isn't over yet, but this is very encouraging news. I would urge the students, faculty, and alumni of UF to continue to express your support for the essential academic mission of your university."

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2012 április 26, 12:46

TSA Defends Pat Down of 4-Year-Old Girl

cosm writes "With public outcry against the TSA continuing to spread, the TSA is defending a recent episode in which a four-year-old was patted down while kicking and screaming at Wichita Airport in Kansas. From the AP article: 'The grandmother of a 4-year-old girl who became hysterical during a security screening at a Kansas airport said Wednesday that the child was forced to undergo a pat-down after hugging her, with security agents yelling and calling the crying girl an uncooperative suspect.'"

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2012 április 26, 12:04


A VMware megerősítette, hogy ESX forráskód szivárgott ki

A VMware Security Response Center igazgatója, Iain Mulholland tegnapelőtt a megerősítette, hogy valóban ESX kódrészletek szivárogtak ki. A szóban forgó kódot április 8-án tette ki a Pastebin-re egy magát "Hardcore Charlie"-nak nevező ismeretlen. A VMware közlése szerint nem zárható ki, hogy még több kód lát napvilágot a jövőben. Az Ars Technica szerint "szerencsére" régi, 2003-2004-ből származó kódról van szó. A hírek szerint a kódot a kínai katonai beszállító CEIEC-től lophatták el.

2012 április 26, 11:34

A Google bejelentette a GSoC 2012-be felvételt nyert tanulók listáját

Februárban jelentette be a Google, hogy idén is lesz Google Summer of Code (GSoC). 2005 óta fut már a GSoC program, amelynek keretében a keresőóriás a tanulókat arra ösztönzi, hogy bekapcsolódjanak egy-egy nyílt forrású projekt fejlesztésébe, mentori felügyelet alatt nyílt forrású kódokat alkossanak. Idén 1212 tanuló került be a programba. Ők 180 szervezettel működhetnek együtt azért, hogy tanuljanak, ismereteiket bővítsék.

A tanulók számára most indul az ismerkedési, felkészülési szakasz, amely alatt megismerkedhetnek a mentorukkal, a kiválasztott közösséggel, dokumentumokat olvashatnak, hogy felkészülve várják a május végét, amikor a tényleges kódolás elkezdődik.

A programba felvételt nyert tanulók listája itt található. A mentorálást végző szervezetek - köztük a FreeBSD, NetBSD, DragonFly BSD projekt, a Linux kernelfejlesztői közösség, Apache Software Foundation, GCC, Gimp, GNU projekt, Haiku, Illumos, KDE, LibreOffice, MINIX 3, Mozilla, Nmap, openSUSE, LLVM, Wine - listája itt található. A bejelentés itt.

2012 április 26, 10:39


German Court Rules That Clients Responsible For Phishing Losses

benfrog writes "A German court has ruled that clients, not banks, are responsible for losses in phishing scams. The German Federal Court of Justice (the country's highest civil court) ruled in the case of a German retiree who lost €5,000 ($6,608) in a bank transfer fraudulently sent to Greece. According to The Local, a German news site, the man entered 10 transaction codes into a site designed to look like his bank's web site and his bank is not liable as it specifically warned against such phishing attacks."

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2012 április 26, 09:01


Google: dolgozunk a Google Drive Linux támogatásán

A Google tegnapelőtt jelentette be Google Drive szolgáltatását. Linux rendszereket használók csalódottan vették tudomásul, hogy a Google Drive-hoz nincs linuxos desktop kliens. Többen is kérték a Google-t, hogy pótolja elmaradt házi feladatát és készítsen klienset Linuxra is. Több válasz is érkezett: "dolgozunk rajta."

2012 április 26, 07:00

Földrajzilag elosztott tükrözést indított a Google

Shawn Pearce tegnapelőtt bejelentette, hogy a Google mirrort indított a címen. A tükrözés mögött ugyanaz a gyors infrastruktúra áll, amely az Android nyílt forrású projekt mögött található, és amely naponta több mint 1TB-nyi adatot és 2,5 millió kérést szolgál ki. A a világ több pontján - Ázsia, Európa, Egyesült Államok - található Google adatközpontból szolgálják ki.

A bejelentés elolvasható itt.

2012 április 26, 06:22


White Space Wireless Broadband Trial In UK Is a Success

Mark.JUK writes "A major multinational ten month long trial of new 'White Space' technology (IEEE 802.22) in the United Kingdom, which uses the spare radio spectrum that exists between Digital Terrestrial TV (DTV) channels to deliver wireless internet access services over a wide area, has officially completed today and been deemed 'successful.' The technology, if approved, could one day help to bring faster broadband services to both isolated rural and urban areas. The TV White Spaces Consortium, which comprises 17 international and UK technology and media companies (BT, Microsoft, BBC, Alcatel-Lucent etc.), has now recommended that the UK regulator, Ofcom, complete its development of the 'enabling regulatory framework' (i.e. Draft Statutory Instrument) in a 'manner that protects licensees' from 'harmful' interference and encourages innovation and deployment."

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2012 április 26, 05:55

Study Suggests the Number-Line Concept Is Not Intuitive

An anonymous reader writes "The Yupno people of New Guinea have provided clues to the origins of the number-line concept, and suggest that the familiar concept of time may be cultural as well. From the article: 'Tape measures. Rulers. Graphs. The gas gauge in your car, and the icon on your favorite digital device showing battery power. The number line and its cousins – notations that map numbers onto space and often represent magnitude – are everywhere. Most adults in industrialized societies are so fluent at using the concept, we hardly think about it. We don't stop to wonder: Is it 'natural'? Is it cultural? Now, challenging a mainstream scholarly position that the number-line concept is innate, a study suggests it is learned."

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2012 április 26, 02:56


Packetstorm Security and Metasploit have Exploit code for MS12-027, (Thu, Apr 26th)


2012 április 26, 01:34

ISC StormCast for Thursday, April 26th 2012, (Thu, Apr 26th)


2012 április 26, 01:18


Insects Develop Pesticide Resistance Through Symbiosis With Gut Flora

First time accepted submitter blinkin247 writes "The indiscriminate spraying of pesticides has probably caused as many problems as it has solved, but here's one that was not expected: some bacteria have decided that insecticide is a very tasty meal. Unfortunately for us, one of the strains of bacteria that has evolved the ability to digest the toxin happens to be able to find a home in an insect's gut. When it does so, it provides the insect with resistance."

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2012 április 26, 00:10


Stephen Michael Kellat: Happy Precise Release Day!

Another release is done and now the community progresses ever onward. Who knows what tomorrow may bring?

2012 április 26, 00:00

április 25, 2012


Is Siri Smarter Than Google?

storagedude writes "Google could go the way of the dodo if ultra intelligent electronic agents (UIEA) make their way into the mainstream, according to technology prognosticator Daniel Burrus. Siri is just the first example of how a UIEA could end search as we know it. By leveraging the cloud and supercomputing capabilities, Siri uses natural language search to circumvent the entire Google process. If Burrus is right, we'll no longer have to wade through '30,000,000 returns in .0013 milliseconds' of irrelevant search results."

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2012 április 25, 23:50


Jono Bacon: David Callé Rocks My World


View larger.

…that’s why. :-)

2012 április 25, 23:19


VMware Confirms Source Code Leak

Gunkerty Jeb writes "Purloined data and documents, including source code belonging to the U.S. software firm VMWare, continue to bubble up from the networks of a variety of compromised Chinese firms, according to 'Hardcore Charlie,' an anonymous hacker who has claimed responsibility for the hacks. In a statement on the VMWare Web site, Ian Mulholland, Director of VMWare's Security Response Center, said the company acknowledged that a source code file for its ESX product had been leaked online. In a phone interview, Mulholland told Threatpost the company was monitoring the situation and conducting an investigation into the incident."

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2012 április 25, 23:00


Ubuntu Cloud Portal: Announcing the UDS Juju Charm Contest for UDS attendees

It’s time for another Juju Charm Contest, where you can submit your charms and win fabulous prizes! This contest is for Ubuntu Developer Summit Attendees; and our prizes are three sexy Dell XPS 13 ultrabooks, which we’ll be awarding to the three lucky winners of the contest. So how can you win yourself one of [...]

2012 április 25, 22:16


Bug Bounty Hunters Weigh In On Google's Vulnerability Reporting Program

An anonymous reader writes "InfoWorld reached out to three security researchers who participate in Google's vulnerability reporting program, through which the company now offers as much as $20,000 for bug reports. They provided some insightful perspectives on what Google (and other companies, such as Mozilla) are doing right in paying bounties on bugs, as well as where there's some room for improvement."

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2012 április 25, 22:12

Microsoft's Hotmail Challenge Backfires

Barence writes "Microsoft challenged the editor of PC Pro to return to Hotmail after six years of using Gmail, to prove that its webmail service had vastly improved — but the challenge backfired when he had his Hotmail account hacked. PC Pro's editor say he was quietly impressed with a number of new Hotmail features, including SkyDrive integration and mailbox clean-up features. He'd even imported his Gmail and contacts into Microsoft's service. But the two-week experiment came to an abrupt end when Hotmail sent a message containing a malicious link to all of his contacts. 'What's even more worrying is that it's not only my webmail that's been compromised, but my Xbox login (which holds my credit card details) and now my PC login too. Because Windows 8 practically forces you to login with your Windows Live/Hotmail details to access features such as the Metro Store, synchronization and SkyDrive,' he writes."

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2012 április 25, 21:50

Congress Considering CISPA Amendments

First time accepted submitter casac8 writes "As Friday's House vote on CISPA nears, it appears Congress members are getting nervous. Literally millions of people around the world have signed petitions voicing their opposition, and it appears Congress has heard their concerns, as House members are considering a number of amendments aimed at limiting the negative impacts the legislation would have on Internet privacy. For instance, one amendment likely to pass would tighten the bill's language to ensure its provisions are only applied in the pursuit of legit crimes and other rare instances, rather than whenever the NSA wants to target Joe Web-user. And another would increase possible liability on the parts of companies who hand personal information over to the government."

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2012 április 25, 21:30

Solar Cells That Emit Light Break Efficiency Record

benfrog writes "Researchers at the University of California-Berkeley say they have come up with a counter-intuitive way of making solar cells more efficient — making them emit light. In a press release the scientists claim to be the first to demonstrate that the better solar cells are at emitting photons (the more LED-like they are), the more efficient they are at generating electricity. However, 'unlike an LED, the electrons in a solar cell are absorbing photons from an exterior source as well as emitting their own.'"

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2012 április 25, 20:47


Blacole's shell code, (Wed, Apr 25th)

Let's assume you finished the analysis of Blacole's obfuscated Javascript (see my earlier di ...(more)...

2012 április 25, 20:41


Jason Gerard DeRose: Novacut, System76, and the Colorado LoCo release party

If you happen to be in the Denver metro area, you should totally stop by the Colorado LoCo Ubuntu Release Party! It's this Sunday (April 29th) from 6-9pm at the Rock Bottom Brewery in Westminster. Tara and I will be there demoing Novacut 12.04, and even better, we'll be demoing Novacut on System76 hardware!

System76 is kindly letting us bad-touch two of their delicious laptops for the evening (one Pangolin Performance 9, one Lemur Ultra 4), and I reckon the audience will have ample time to bad-touch these laptops as well. Actually, that's sort of the point, because we want people to play with Novacut.

We're demoing on two laptops because we're going to show off our real-time collaborative editing. When you see it in person, it has a magic that will almost make you wonder if it's a hoax... till you try it for yourself. So try out Novacut, spend quality time with some System76 laptops, and celebrate the release of Ubuntu 12.04 LTS, all in one fun-filled night!

Event details here.

2012 április 25, 20:31


World's Largest Digital Camera Project Passes Critical Milestone

An anonymous reader writes in with a link about the progress of one of the coolest astronomy projects around. "A 3.2 billion-pixel digital camera designed by SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory is now one step closer to reality. The Large Synoptic Survey Telescope camera, which will capture the widest, fastest and deepest view of the night sky ever observed, has received 'Critical Decision 1' approval by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to move into the next stage of the project. The Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST) will survey the entire visible sky every week, creating an unprecedented public archive of data – about 6 million gigabytes per year, the equivalent of shooting roughly 800,000 images with a regular eight-megapixel digital camera every night, but of much higher quality and scientific value. Its deep and frequent cosmic vistas will help answer critical questions about the nature of dark energy and dark matter and aid studies of near-Earth asteroids, Kuiper belt objects, the structure of our galaxy and many other areas of astronomy and fundamental physics."

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2012 április 25, 20:03


Benjamin Kerensa: Dude, Take the tour!

tour Quetzal 286x300 Dude, Take the tour!Apparently Quincy the Quetzal thinks you should take the Ubuntu 12.04 Online Tour that Ubuntu Oregon just launched:

2012 április 25, 19:50


Microsoft Says Two Basic Security Steps Might Have Stopped Conficker

coondoggie writes "If businesses and consumers stuck to security basics, they could have avoided all cases of Conficker worm infection detected on 1.7 million systems by Microsoft researchers in the last half of 2011. According to the latest Microsoft Security Intelligence report, all cases of Conficker infection stemmed from just two attack methods: weak or stolen passwords and exploiting software vulnerabilities for which updates existed."

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2012 április 25, 19:20

Tim Cook Prefers Settling To Suing and Has a Huge Quarter

An anonymous reader writes "Apple's current legal battles with Samsung encapsulate a large number of patents, innumerable suits and counter-suits, and have resulted in legal motions in 11 jurisdictions across the globe. As you may remember, Steve Jobs in his biography was quite vocal about his intent to go thermonuclear on Android, vowing to spend every last dime in Apple's coffers to destroy Google's mobile OS. But Tim Cook is a bit more level headed about things, expressing during Apple's earnings conference call yesterday that he has has always hated litigation and would much rather settle than to battle in court. The caveat, of course, is that Cook doesn't want Apple to 'become the developer for the world.'" It may not be what Jobs would do, but as zacharye notes, it doesn't seem to be hurting earnings. "Despite early-morning jitters on Wall Street, Apple on Tuesday reported yet another blow-out quarter. The Cupertino, California-based company managed the second most profitable quarter in its history, posting a net profit of $11.6 billion on $39.2 billion in sales. Apple sold 35.1 million iPhones into channels last quarter, along with 11.8 million iPads, 7.7 million iPods and 4 million Mac computers. While the firm continues to dominate the technology industry — Apple is currently the most valuable company in the world — several analysts think Apple is just getting started."

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2012 április 25, 18:36


Jorge Castro: Ubuntu OpenWeek, 2-4 May on Freenode

2-4 May in #ubuntu-classroom

It’s that time of the year folks. Tomorrow you get a shiny new Operating System, and next week we’ll have an IRC workshop where you can find cool new things to do with it. Here’s the schedule:

Ubuntu OpenWeek Schedule

Don’t forget, the Ask Mark session will be on Tuesday at 2100UTC. Due to scheduling conflicts this will be the kick off session on Tuesday, then we have sessions Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday.

Some of you might be wondering why we’ve consolidated it to three days. It’s actually the same number of sessions as we’ve always had, we’ve just extended the length of each day so we could have more sessions concentrated in a shorter period, this will hopefully lead to more attendees instead of being spread thin over a week.

We still have 4 slots, so if you want to claim them come find me, I’m always looking for instructors and we can always add more slots if we have instructors, so if you want to teach a class, ping me.

2012 április 25, 18:09

David Planella: Get the Ubuntu Online Tour on your LoCo site

I’m thrilled to announce the availability of the Ubuntu 12.04 Online Tour for local community teams to localize and use on their websites. The tour has been the result of the stunning work done by Ant Dillon from the Canonical Web Design Team and should provide a web-based first impression of Ubuntu to new users, now in their language.

It’s a great opportunity to showcase Ubuntu to your local community to celebrate release day tomorrow.

Where is it?

How can I use it for my LoCo website?

First of all, you’ll need to get set up with the right tools before you start.

Getting set up:

If you’ve already translated the tour in Launchpad, you can build a localized version in 3 easy steps:

1. Get the code:

bzr branch lp:ubuntu-online-tour/12.04

2. Build the localized tour:

cd 12.04
cd translate-html/bin
./translate-html -t

3. Deploy the tour:

If you haven’t finished the translation for your language in Launchpad, you will need to complete the corresponding PO file before you run step 2. Just ask on the Ubuntu translators mailing list or on Launchpad in case you need help or are not familiar with PO files.

For any issues, suggestions or enhancement, use the Online Tour’s Launchpad project to report bugs or submit improvements.


2012 április 25, 18:00

Xubuntu: Xubuntu Artwork Update: Unity Support

While there are many people who project a competition between Ubuntu and its derivatives, I’d like to set a (small) sign that this is definitely not the case.

With respect to our default theme, “Greybird”, I have been striving to expand the supported window-managers in the last release “Oneiric Ocelot, 11.10″ (metacity, emerald), to give people who want to use Compiz in Xubuntu an easy way to use our default look.

So for this cycle (“Precise Pangolin”) I started working on adding support for Unity in Greybird. Unfortunately there were so many things to do in the artwork-department during this cycle that I could only start a very short while ago, so we’re far past the freezes. So far our testers report that things are working well and if there are no blockers coming up, this will hopefully land in Precise via the -proposed repository.

Try for yourself!

You can try this version of Greybird even before it lands in any repository very easily by downloading the 0.8.1 release and unpacking the theme into ~/.themes (if that directory doesn’t exist, simply create it).

Unfortunately there is currently no built-in way of switching to any other than the short list of themes that Ubuntu ships by default in Unity, so those of you who want to give this a try will have to use something like “GNOME Tweak Tool”, “Ubuntu Tweak” or “My Unity”.

If you find any bugs please file them on launchpad! Thanks in advance and happy testing!

A few screenshots

And finally, since everyone loves screenshots, here go a few of Unity with Greybird in action, taken by our tester Carlos.

  Greybird in Unity, Nautilus and gnome-terminal     

2012 április 25, 17:57


Google Set To Meld Google Drive With Chrome OS

MikeatWired writes "Google will tightly integrate its new Google Drive online storage service with an upcoming version of its Chrome OS operating system, says Sundar Pichai, who oversees development of the company's Chrome products as well as its Google Apps online services. Chrome OS is Google's effort to move all applications and data onto the web (and its Chrome browser), but the OS still hasn't mastered the art of moving files from place to place. By integrating Chrome OS with Google Drive — the online storage service Google introduced on Tuesday — the company seeks to correct this problem. 'With Chromebooks, [Google Drive] is even more powerful,' Pichai says, 'because it just starts working naturally. Your local drive is also Google Drive. This makes it really powerful because you just don't think about it.' Basically, Google Drive — a service that operates on the web — will perform as if it was the local file system. If you open the 'save file' dialog box on Chrome OS, for instance, the system will take you straight to Google Drive. 'We'll effectively integrate [Google] Drive into the native file system of Chrome OS,' says Scott Johnson, Google's Google Drive product manager. 'All the core OS functionality will use [Google] Drive as a place to store data — if that's what you opt in to.'"

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2012 április 25, 17:54

Valve's Steam & Games Coming To Linux

An anonymous reader writes "Valve's Steam and Source Engine-based games are coming to Linux. Michael from well known site has been invited to Valve's office and was able to spend a day with the developers and Gabe Newell himself. He is confirming the rumors about Linux ports from Valve, and has been able to play the games and work the developers himself. Attached in the article are pictures from Valve's offices with games running on Linux."

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2012 április 25, 17:44


Microsoft Security Intelligence Report (SIR) Volume #12:, (Wed, Apr 25th)


2012 április 25, 17:35


NASA and Astrobotic Investigating Ice Hunting Mission to the Moon

Zothecula writes, quoting Gizmodo "While the Moon may or may not contain life forms, precious metals or even green cheese, recent satellite missions have indicated that it does nonetheless contain something that could prove quite valuable — water ice. NASA has estimated that at least 650 million tons (600 million tonnes) of the stuff could be deposited in craters near the Moon's north pole alone. If mined, it could conceivably serve as a source of life support for future lunar bases, or it could be used to produce fuel for spacecraft stopping at a "lunar gas station." Before any mining can happen, however, we need to learn more about the ice. That's why NASA has contracted Pittsburgh-based Astrobotic Technology to determine if its Polaris rover robot could be used for ice prospecting."

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2012 április 25, 17:02


Barry Warsaw: Python 3 on the desktop for Quantal Quetzal

So, now all the world now knows that my suggested code name for Ubuntu 12.10, Qwazy Quahog, was not chosen by Mark.  Oh well, maybe I'll have more luck with Racy Roadrunner.

In any case, Ubuntu 12.04 LTS is to be released any day now so it's time for my semi-annual report on Python plans for Ubuntu.  I seem to write about this every cycle, so 12.10 is no exception.  We've made some fantastic progress, but now it's time to get serious.

For Ubuntu 12.10, we've made it a release goal to have Python 3 only on the desktop CD images.  The usual caveats apply: Python 2.7 isn't going away; it will still probably always be available in the main archive.  This release goal also doesn't affect other installation CD images, such as server, or other Ubuntu flavors.  The relatively modest goal then only affects packages for the standard desktop CD images, i.e. the alternative installation CD and the live CD.

Update 20120425: To be crystal clear,  if you depend on Python 2.7, the only thing that changes for you is that after a fresh install from the desktop CD on a new machine, you'll have to explicitly apt-get install python2.7.  After that, everything else will be the same.

This is ostensibly an effort to port a significant chunk of Ubuntu to Python 3, but it really is a much wider, Python-community driven effort.  Ubuntu has its priorities, but I personally want to see a world where Python 3 rules the day, and we can finally start scoffing at Python 2 :).

Still, that leaves us with about 145 binary packages (and many fewer source packages) to port.  There are a few categories of packages to consider:

We need your help!  First of all, there's no way I can personally port everything on our list, including both libraries and applications.  We may have to make some hard choices to drop some functionality from Ubuntu if we can't get it ported, and we don't want to have to do that.  So here are some ways you can contribute:
Python 3.3 is scheduled to be released later this year.  Please help make 2012 the year that Python 3 reached critical mass!


On a more personal note, I am also committed to making Mailman 3 a Python 3 application, but right now I'm blocked on a number of dependencies.  Here are the list of dependencies from the file, and their statuses.  I would love it if you help get these ported too!
Of course, these are only the direct dependencies.  Others that get pulled in include:

2012 április 25, 16:54

The Fridge: Membership Boards: Restaffing and Reorganization

On May 5th we will have a large number of Regional Membership Board members with terms expiring. The Community Council decided to take this opportunity to evaluate the effectiveness of these regional membership boards and how it make sense to go about restaffing them.

After several discussions, including those with sitting board members, we have determined that while there are values to region-based boards (there may be cultural and language similarities), it makes more sense for us to switch to time-based membership boards. We hope that with this change to time-based we can have a more established meeting times that the community is familiar with and more successful boards with board members being able to commit to a specific time rather than assuming evening is the best time in their time zone for them to attend.

The times selected are as follows:

12:00 UTC, meeting twice a month, specific days to be determined by the board

22:00 UTC, meeting twice a month, specific days to be determined by the board

These boards will each have 9 members with a quorum of 4. We are seeking to seat 10 new board members at this time across both boards (we have 8 board members whose terms are not ending).

We have the following requirements for nominees:

Those sitting on membership boards are people who are insightful. They are current Ubuntu Members with a proven track record of activity in the community. They have shown themselves over time to be able to work well with others and display the positive aspects of the Ubuntu Code of Conduct. They should be people who can discern character and evaluate contribution quality without emotion while engaging in an interview/discussion that communicates interest, a welcoming atmosphere, and which is marked by humanity, gentleness, and kindness. Even when they must deny applications, they should do so in such a way that applicants walk away with a sense of hopefulness and a desire to return with a more complete application rather than feeling discouraged or hurt.

To nominate yourself or somebody else (please confirm they wish to accept the nomination and state you have done so), please send a mail to the membership boards mailing list (ubuntu-membership-boards at You will want to include some information about yourself (or the applicant you are nominating), a launchpad profile link and which time slot is being applied for.

We will be accepting nominations through Friday May 18 at 12:00 UTC. All nominations will be forwarded to the Community Council who will make the final decision.

Thanks in advance to you and thanks also to the dedication everybody has put into their jobs as board members.

Originally posted to the ubuntu-news-team mailing list by Elizabeth Krumbach on Wed Apr 25 16:24:34 UTC 2012

2012 április 25, 16:29

Ubuntu Geek

Ubuntu 12.10 named Quantal Quetzal

{lang: 'en-GB'}

This quirky scheme of adjectives and animals presents a pretty puzzle every six months. What mix of characteristics do we want to celebrate in the next release? Here we are, busily finalizing the precise pangolin (which was a rather perfect product placement for a scaly anteater, all things considered) and before one realises it’s time to talk turkey, so to speak, about Q! Our code names may raise a quizzical eyebrow here and there, but they capture the zeitgeist of a cycle and shape our discussions in surprising ways. The quest for a name has no quick answer unless, of course, you jump to the last paragraph ;)
Read the rest of Ubuntu 12.10 named Quantal Quetzal (447 words)

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2012 április 25, 15:56


Randall Ross: Quincy the Quetzal Says:


Want to play along? GIMP is your friend.
@ Ben: We're in Vancouver BC.

2012 április 25, 15:52


Tiny Core 4.5

A Tiny Core csapat nevében Robert Shingledecker bejelentette a miniatűr desktop Linux disztribúció, a Tiny Core (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7) 4.5-ös kiadását. Letölthető: TinyCore-4.5.iso (11,9MB | MD5SUM).

2012 április 25, 14:26


'Gaia' Scientist Admits Mispredicting Rate of Climate Change

DesScorp writes "James Lovelock, the scientist that came up with the 'Gaia Theory' and a prominent herald of climate change, once predicted utter disaster for the planet from climate change, writing 'before this century is over billions of us will die and the few breeding pairs of people that survive will be in the Arctic where the climate remains tolerable.' Now Lovelock is walking back his rhetoric, admitting that he and other prominent global warming advocates were being alarmists. In a new interview with MSNBC he says: '"The problem is we don't know what the climate is doing. We thought we knew 20 years ago. That led to some alarmist books — mine included — because it looked clear-cut, but it hasn't happened," Lovelock said. "The climate is doing its usual tricks. There's nothing much really happening yet. We were supposed to be halfway toward a frying world now," he said. "The world has not warmed up very much since the millennium. Twelve years is a reasonable time it (the temperature) has stayed almost constant, whereas it should have been rising — carbon dioxide is rising, no question about that," he added.' Lovelock still believes the climate is changing, but at a much, much slower pace."

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2012 április 25, 14:05


Duncan McGreggor: New Life: The OpenStack DevOps Community

Last week's OpenStack Design Summit and Conference were pretty fantastic events. Lots of great technical discussions, some good initial planning on large tasks, incredible numbers of conversations -- all of high quality! Looking back, though, I'd have to say that the high point of the event for me was what turned into the DevOps community brainstorm session (etherpad link) at the Design Summit (all etherpads are here).

The session was approved with the title of "OpenStack and Operations: Getting Real" with a major goal of deciding whether we needed to create a new top-level project for DevOps. So it was really "New DevOps Team?" However, all that changed once we got started, and there was some amazing feedback and enthusiasm in that room. By the end of it, we were all pretty pumped up and ready to jump in with all our hands and feet!

The highest-level summary for me was this: The DevOps folks in the OpenStack community really need a point to rally around. Someplace they can not only talk to each other, share stories, get advice, etc., but also where they can have their voices heard by the predominantly developer-oriented OpenStack community. Jay Pipes suggested that a new section be added to the weekly IRC team leader meetings, and as Nova Ops subteam lead (teams list), I volunteered to collect top issues from the DevOps (sub-)community and give these some air-time in the meetings.

Some other highlights from the session:

There is a tremendous amount of information that we collected, but in written form (etherpads) as well as conversations during last week's event. As this is collected, we'll be reaching out to folks via the operators mail list, blog posts, tweets, and Google+ messages. Be sure to do the same! If you've got concerns, bring them up on the mail list, we'll get some bugs filed and blueprints put together, and come up with plans for addressing these.

Thanks again, everyone!

2012 április 25, 13:47

Michael Hall: Hello Unity, episode 3 & 4

The past couple of weeks have been busy for just about everybody at Canonical as we prepare for the release of Ubuntu 12.04, which is shaping it to be a remarkable release indeed.  But I was able to spend a little bit of time hacking on Hello Unity again (see episode 1 and 2), and it has received two updates this week.

New in 0.3: Sound Menu

I was stuck on this one for a while, it appeared at first that the libunity API wasn’t working from Python, but with the help of Conor Curran I was able to trace the source of my trouble back to the fact that my .desktop file has a space in the Name field.  Removing that got me back on track, and I was able to quickly finish adding Sound Menu integration.

This demonstrates how to integrate a media player with the Unity sound menu, how to respond to user interaction with that menu’s playback controls, and how to send information to the menu about the playback state and current track metadata.  It also demonstrates adding a Playlist to the menu.

New in 0.4: Quicklists

Talking with Jono Bacon the other day about his Accomplishments application, I decided that Hello Unity should demonstrate how to add Quicklists to the Launcher.  There are two ways to do this in Unity, statically in the .desktop file, and dynamically using libunity and Dbusmenu. For now I’ve only implemented the dynamic lists.

This will add a Quicklist action item for each of the sections in Hello Unity.  Clicking on one of those menu items will call a function in the Launcher demonstration code that will bring that section’s tab forward.

Feature Roundup

There is still more that I plan on adding to Hello Unity, but it’s already covering many areas for Unity integration available to application developers.  Here’s the breakdown of what Hello Unity currently demonstrates:

Throughout writing this program, I’ve been constantly surprised at just how easy it is to integrate with Unity.  All of the implemented features above still amounts to less than 500 lines of actual code.

As always, you can get the source at lp:hello-unity, or download the tarball and DEB to give it a try.

2012 április 25, 13:45


Phoronix Confirms GNU/Linux Steam and Source Engine Clients

nukem996 writes "After initially reporting in 2010 that Valve was working on a native GNU/Linux client, one has finally been confirmed. Michael Larabel recently visited Valve's Bellvue, WA based office and has been able to see it himself. Included in the article are screenshots of the client running and speculation of a release." Valve has yet to officially comment, but you'd hope they wouldn't invite someone up to their offices and send them home to spew lies.

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2012 április 25, 13:28


Linux Mint Debian 201204

Clement Lefebvre tegnap bejelentette a Linux Mint Debian Edition (LMDE) 201204-es kiadását. Benne a "legjobb" desktop környezetek közül mindjárt három is megtalálható: a tradicionális GNOME felület kedvelőinek a MATE 1.2, a GNOME2-re hajazó GNOME shell fork rajongóknak a Cinnamon 1.4, a könnyebb megoldást kedvelőknek pedig az Xfce 4.8. Részletek a bejelentésben.

2012 április 25, 13:01


Video: Paul "Froggy" Schneider's Hard-Won Wisdom For Conference Organizers

Cleveland-based programmer Paul Schneider, better known both online and in person as Froggy, first organized Notacon after trips to HOPE and other hacker cons gave him the idea; there weren't any gatherings like it in Cleveland at the time, and attending HOPE cost more in money and time than many locals would have been willing to justify for a weekend. Froggy sensed there was a big enough community in Cleveland of hackers, musicians, artists and others to support one, though. So he wrangled space, put out the word, and lined up enough presentations to make it happen. Now, Notacon's been going on for nine years straight (and year 10 is already in the works). In that time, Froggy's developed some thoughts about how to pull off organizing a gathering that involves hundreds of people at a time — and not just any people, but ones with soldering guns, nerf guns, fencing sabers, a lot of electrical equipment, and sometimes (egads!) even children. Froggy is quick to credit the dozens of people — about 20 core staff, and others with smaller but important roles — who also take part in planning and running the conference. Finding hard-working, like-minded souls may be the most universal part of his advice on running a similar event; watch the video interview for more.

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2012 április 25, 12:50

Why eBook DRM Has To Go

Sci-Fi author Charlie Stross was recently put in the position of offering his thoughts to book publisher Macmillan on why eBook DRM is a terrible thing — not just for consumers, but for publishers, too. He makes a strong case that the removal of DRM, while not an immediate financial boon, will strongly benefit publishers in years to come through increased goodwill from users, greater leverage against Amazon's near-monopoly on distribution, and better platform interoperability. "Within 5 years we will be seeing a radically different electronic landscape. Unlocking the readers' book collections will force Amazon and B&N and their future competitors to support migration (if they want to compete for each others' customers). So hopefully it will promote the transition from the near-monopoly we had before the agency model, via the oligopoly we have today, to a truly competitive retail market that also supports midlist sales." Users have been railing against DRM for years, but it appears the publishers are finally starting to listen.

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2012 április 25, 12:11


Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.3 Beta

A Red Hat Enterprise Linux Team tegnap bejelentette a Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.3 béta kiadását. Ez a RHEL 6 harmadik minor kiadásának publikusan elérhető tesztverziója. Virtualizáció fronton újdonság a Virt-P2V eszköz, amely lehetővé teszi fizikai Windows, vagy RHEL rendszerek betolását virtuális gép image-be. Skálázhatóság téren érdemes megemlíteni, hogy a virtuális CPU-k (vCPU) maximális száma 64-ről 160-ra nőtt, valamint a KVM guest-ek maximális támogatott memóriakonfigurációja 512GB-ról 2TB-ra változott. Storage oldalon a RHEL 6.3 teljes mértékben támogatja majd a Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) Target-et...

További részletek a bejelentésben.

2012 április 25, 12:10


Blacole's obfuscated JavaScript, (Wed, Apr 25th)

Looking back on how we used to analyze malicious JavaScript five years ago, it is quite amazing t ...(more)...

2012 április 25, 11:44


Scientific Linux 5.8

Pat Riehecky tegnap bejelentette a Scientific Linux 5.8-as kiadását. A SL - a CentOS-hez hasonlóan - a Red Hat Enterprise Linux forrásából közösségi munkával előállított Linux disztribúció.

[ bejelentés | kiadási megjegyzések | i386 ISO | x86_64 ISO ]

2012 április 25, 11:11

BSD-Day 2012

Magyar BSD levlista írta:
2012. május 5-én idén is megrendezésre kerül a ,,BSD-Day'', ezúttal Bécsben, a Linuxwochen Österreich részeként. Tervezett (angol nyelvű) előadásaink a következőek:

  • Fabio Balzano: "Embedding NetBSD: VOIP Applications"
  • Andrew Pantyukhin (infofarmer@FreeBSD): "DVCS: A New, Cloudy Life for Your ~, / and SQL"
  • Martin Matuska (mm@FreeBSD): "mfsBSD"
  • Ilya Bakulin: "The Capsicum Security Framework: Sandboxing Done the Right Way"
  • Giovanni Bechis (giovanni@OpenBSD): "Relayd: A Load-Balancer for OpenBSD"
  • Beat Gaetzi (beat@FreeBSD): "New Features In and Around the FreeBSD Ports Tree"
  • Ermal Luci (eri@pfSense): "Introducing pfSense"
  • Adam Hamsik (haad@NetBSD): "NetBSD and Xen"
  • A további részletekről a rendezvény (még frissülő) honlapján lehet tájékozódni:

    2012 április 25, 11:02


    Hacking the Law

    New submitter sethopia writes "Brooklyn Law School's Incubator and Policy Clinic (BLIP) hosted its first 'Legal Hackathon.' Instead of hacking computer code, attendees — mostly lawyers, law students, coders, and entrepreneurs — used the hacking ethos to devise technologically sophisticated solutions to legal problems. These included attempts to crowdsource mayoral candidacies in New York City and hacking model privacy policies for ISPs."

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    2012 április 25, 09:08


    Új szponzorok az Apache Software Foundation mögött

    A Twitter Engineering blogján a napokban kifejtette, hogy mint cég, milyen fontos számukra a nyílt forrás. Számos Twitter projekt nyílt forráson alapul, így a vállalat open source iránti elkötelezettsége egyre nő. Éppen ezért a Twitter úgy döntött, hogy beáll az Apache Software Foundation hivatalos támogatói közé. A bejelentés fényét egy kissé fakítja, hogy a Twitter mindössze bronz fokozatú (évi 5000 dollár támogatás) támogatója lett az ASF-nek, miközben például a Yahoo, Microsoft, Google, Facebook platina támogatók (évi 100 000 dollár támogatás).

    Az ASF bejelentette, hogy a Twitter mellett a Huawei és a GoDaddy is belépett a támogatói közé ezüst fokozatú (évi 20 000 dollár támogatás) támogatóként.

    2012 április 25, 09:01

    Phoronix: érkezik a natív Steam kliens és a Source engine port Linuxra

    A Phoronix már jó ideje mondogatja, hogy érkezik a Valve digitális tartalomterjesztő és -kezelő megoldása - a Steam - natívan Linuxra. Sokan nem hittek a weboldalnak, de úgy fest, hogy Michael Larabel-nek igaza lesz. Az ex-microsoftos Gabe Newell, a Valve társalapítója, első embere meghívta Larabel-t a Valve Bellevue-ben található hadiszállására. Larabel az ott eltöltött idő után nem csak arról számolt be, hogy érkezik a natív Steam kliens Linuxra, hogy a Valve portolja a játékai alapját képező Source engine-t Linuxra, hanem arról is, hogy a Valve-nek nagy linuxos tervei vannak. Larabel látta, hogy a fejlesztői gépeken már fut a Left 4 Dead 2 Ubuntu-n. Ez lesz az első title, amit a Valve portol Linuxra. A játékfejlesztő cég már vett is fel Larabel ajánlása alapján Linux/OpenGL fejlesztőt és nem kizárt, hogy további Linux (kernel) fejlesztőkkel erősíti majd fejlesztői gárdáját (jelentkezni lehet Michael Larabel-nél). Larabel szerint Newell nagy linuxos terveket dédelget, miközben a Windows 8-ról és a Microsoft jövőjéről nincs túl jó véleménnyel.

    A Phoronix élménybeszámolója a Valve-nél tett látogatásról elolvasható itt.

    2012 április 25, 08:01

    A Fitch bóvliba vágta a Nokia-t; 15 éves mélyponton a telefongyártó részvényárfolyama

    15 éves mélypontra esett a Nokia részvényeinek árfolyama azután, hogy a Fitch hitelminősítő tegnap bóvlira (junk) változtatta a finn telefongyártó besorolását. A másik két nagyobb hitelminősítőnél sem áll sokkal jobban a vállalat, a Standard & Poor's-nál és a Moody's-nál is csak egy fokkal áll a bóvli besorolás felett. A Moody's ebben a hónapban rontott a Nokia besorolásán, a Standard & Poor's pedig a múlt hónapban. Egy darab Nokia részvényért 3,63 dollárt kell fizetni jelenleg. Utoljára ilyen alacsony árfolyamon 1997-ben kereskedtek a vállalat papírjaival. A Fitch szerint a Nokia besorolása - ami most "BBB-"-ról "BB+"-ra változott - akár tovább is romolhat, ha a vállalat üzleti teljesítménye nem javul 2012 második felében, illetve 2013-ban. A Fitch nincs meggyőződve arról, hogy ez a Nokia-nak a következő 18 hónapban összejön.

    A részletek itt.

    2012 április 25, 06:50


    Google and the Future of Travel

    An anonymous reader writes "It's been one year since Google's $700 million acquisition of ITA Software was approved by the U.S. Department of Justice after an antitrust review. So what does the search giant's strategy in online travel look like now? Google's Flight Search and Hotel Finder tools have met with mixed reviews in recent months, but a new bit of analysis argues that the future of travel is not about search, it's about data. More specifically, Google wants to make available everything from airfares and restaurant reviews to maps and transit schedules, throughout the entire travel process. And it wants to use travelers' online behavior to serve up better targeted ads and content across all of Google's sites and services."

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    2012 április 25, 06:13

    Inside the PlayStation Suite SDK

    New submitter Serapth writes "Sony recently released the PlayStation Suite SDK to open beta. Using PSS, people are able to write games for various PlayStation certified devices in a C#/Mono based environment. This post takes a look at what's included in the SDK, which, surprisingly, is quite a bit."

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    2012 április 25, 05:21


    Dylan McCall: Rescuing your data from Formstack’s “excess form submission” email

    I seem to be accumulating all sorts of little scripts to solve dumb little problems sensible people don’t encounter (and therefore don’t have scripts for). Normally I keep these to myself because they’re really ugly, but I’m going to start sharing the more useful ones on my blog. Maybe some day I’ll save someone a bit of time. That would be fun!

    Using a Formstack form? Went over your form submission limit and now your email is flooded with thousands of useless error messages?

    Yeah, that happened to us, too. (If it didn’t happen to you, just ignore me and carry on not being miserable).

    We ended up with thousands of survey submissions being launched at our — fortunately quite forgiving — email. Usually, Formstack stores submissions on its end (and they do a decent enough job of that), but after a point that stops being allowed and the service sends an email for each submission, instead. Thousands of really poorly formatted emails. I think they’re trying to sell something…

    So, here is a Python script to turn all that Formstack email back into a single CSV file that you can actually use. The end result looks just like a CSV you would normally download from them, so you can get everything back to normal.

    # Formstack email scraper, by Dylan McCall 
    import argparse
    import codecs
    import sys
    import csv
    # Fields that have arbitrary, user-entered text as values, so the parser knows
    # to ignore reserved characters like "="
    FREE_INPUT_FIELD_NAMES = ["Other", "Please specify", "Do you have any other comments about toxic ingredients in home cleaning products?"]
    def main():
    	parser = argparse.ArgumentParser(description='Convert a CSV file full of Formstack overflow emails back to a useful format.')
    	parser.add_argument('input', metavar='mail',
    		help="The CSV file with Formstack email text in its \"Body\" column")
    	parser.add_argument('output', metavar='output',
    		help="A file to store the results in")
    	parser.add_argument('--input_delimiter', default=',',
    		help="Value separator used for input file. Escape sequences like \\t are allowed.")
    	parser.add_argument('--headers', default='headers.csv',
    		help="A CSV file from Formstack's Export Submissions feature. Only the top part (column names) will be used.")
    	parser.add_argument('--unique_id_start', metavar="N", default=99900000, type=int,
    		help="Starting point for unique submission IDs")
    	args = parser.parse_args()
    	args.input_delimiter = args.input_delimiter.decode('string_escape')
    		headerFile = open(args.headers, 'r')
    	except IOError as error:
    		print "I couldn't open %s." % args.headers
    		print "Please use Formstack's Export Submissions feature to download form"
    		print "submissions as a CSV file. Save the file to the same place as this"
    		print "script, and name it headers.csv."
    		print "The file doesn't need any real submissions. I only need it for the"
    		print "row of column names at the top."
    	inFile = open(args.input, 'r')
    	outFile = open(args.output, 'wb')
    	submissionData = []
    	# This bit of code really hinges on how your mail format works.
    	# Right now, it's written for Microsoft Outlook's "Export messages as CSV"
    	# feature, which has a Body column for message text
    	mailReader = csv.DictReader(inFile, delimiter=args.input_delimiter, quotechar='"')
    	for row in mailReader:
    		mailBody = row['Body']
    		data = getDataFromMail(mailBody)
    		# Some messages may not have interesting data, so we ignore those
    		if len(data) > 0:
    	# Field names can repeat, so we need to figure out the order they appear
    	columns = []
    	headerReader = csv.reader(headerFile, delimiter=',', quotechar='"')
    	dataWriter = csv.writer(outFile)
    	dataWriter.writerow(columns) # Print column names at top of CSV file
    	for index, data in enumerate(submissionData):
    		# Populate the Unique ID field, which isn't in the message body
    		data['Unique ID'] = args.unique_id_start + index
    		outputRow = list(['']) * len(columns)
    		for fieldID, fieldValue in data.iteritems():
    			fieldParts = fieldID.split('###', 2)
    			fieldName = fieldParts[0]
    			fieldNumber = int(fieldParts[1]) if len(fieldParts) > 1 else 0
    			# Find the [fieldNumber]th repetition of the column called fieldName
    			columnRepeats = 0
    			colNumber = findNth(columns, fieldName, fieldNumber)
    			if colNumber >= 0:
    				outputRow[colNumber] = fieldValue
    def findInList(lst, needle, start=0):
    		position = lst.index(needle, start)
    		position = -1
    	return position
    def findNth(lst, needle, n):
    	needleRepeats = 0
    	foundIndex = findInList(lst, needle, 0)
    	while needleRepeats < n and foundIndex >= 0:
    		needleRepeats += 1
    		foundIndex = findInList(lst, needle, foundIndex+1)
    	return foundIndex
    Extract all of the fields listed in the given message body.
    @return dictionary of raw field data, mapping a field name+++number to its value
    def getDataFromMail(text):
    	fields = {}
    	IGNORE_COLUMNS = frozenset([
    		"WARNING" #Formstack's warning message preceding information dump
    	lines = text.split('\n')
    	currentKey = None
    	currentValue = None
    	for line in lines:
    		if currentKey == None:
    			# Looking for the start of a new field
    			if line.find(': ') > -1:
    				# Start of a new field.
    				# This field can span many lines. Store currentKey so the next lines will be appended.
    				# Record field name and first value (after ": ") if applicable
    				key, val = line.split(': ', 1)
    				key = key.strip()
    				val = val.strip()
    				if not key in IGNORE_COLUMNS:
    					currentKey = key
    					currentValue = list()
    					if val:
    		elif currentKey and line.strip() == '':
    			# Blank line always means the end of the current field.
    			if len(currentValue) == 0:
    			processedKeyValues = processField( (currentKey, currentValue) )
    			for finalKey, finalValue in processedKeyValues:
    				duplicates = 0
    				uniqueFinalKey = "%s###%d" % (finalKey, duplicates)
    				while uniqueFinalKey in fields:
    					duplicates += 1
    					uniqueFinalKey = "%s###%d" % (finalKey, duplicates)
    				fields[uniqueFinalKey] = finalValue
    			currentKey = None
    			currentValue = None
    		elif currentKey:
    	return fields
    def processField(field):
    	fieldKey = field[0]
    	fieldValue = field[1]
    	orderedSubFieldKeys = list()
    	subFields = dict()
    	data = list()
    	for value in fieldValue:
    		# This behaves poorly for values that, themselves, contain " = "
    		# Ugly hack for cases with user input
    		if fieldKey in FREE_INPUT_FIELD_NAMES or value.startswith("Other:"):
    			splitValue = [value]
    			splitValue = value.split(' = ', 1)
    		subFieldKey = ''
    		subFieldValue = ''
    		if len(splitValue) == 2:
    			subFieldKey = splitValue[0]
    			subFieldValue = splitValue[1]
    		elif len(splitValue) == 1:
    			subFieldValue = splitValue[0]
    		if not subFieldKey in orderedSubFieldKeys:
    			subFields[subFieldKey] = list()
    	for subFieldKey in orderedSubFieldKeys:
    		if subFieldKey == '':
    			completeHeader = fieldKey
    			completeHeader = "%s (%s)" % (fieldKey, subFieldKey)
    		subFieldValueList = subFields[subFieldKey]
    		completeData = '|'.join(subFieldValueList)
    		#Final output!
    		data.append( (completeHeader, completeData) )
    	if len(data) == 0:
    		print "Aaah!"
    	return data
    if __name__ == "__main__":

    Using this is a little involved. But that’s why you’re still here, right?

    First, put that script somewhere. Save it as If you haven’t guessed, you’ll need Python. I’m assuming you’re using Ubuntu, MacOS X or something of the sort, but Windows should work as well.

    Now, you need two more files.

    Go to the Form Submissions page for your form on Formstack. Click the button near the bottom, to export some submissions as a CSV file. I don’t really care how many submissions you export there are: this output is just being used to get a proper set of column headers. Save that CSV file as headers.csv, put it in the same place as our Python script.

    Next, we need your email, ideally in something like a CSV file. In this case, I was working with a big CSV file from Microsoft Outlook. (We actually used tab-separated values, because Outlook was doing something nightmarish with character encodings. Somewhere between exporting as a TSV and opening the thing differently in LibreOffice, something started to cooperate). Mozilla Thunderbird has an extension to export a folder as a CSV file, too, and it probably won’t be trying to murder kittens.

    Now, because there’s no real standard way to do a CSV-formatted heap of messages, you might need to edit the script to get it to read your messages. There’s a little bit of code at the top — basically everything involving mailReader — which you can edit. It just loops through each message in the CSV file and passes that message’s body text to the message scraper. (If you’re feeling creative, you could use an mbox file with Python’s mailbox library).

    While you’re at it, you need to edit another variable. FREE_INPUT_FIELD_NAMES is a list of field names where people can enter whatever they want. (Text fields, for example). You need to enter every field that is like this on your form. Otherwise, the scraper will trip over peoples’ inputs.

    …Okay, now we’re ready to go!

    Open a terminal, go to the place with your script (and mail.csv, and headers.csv), and do this:

    python mail.csv output.csv --headers=headers.csv

    Boom! Magical, formatted data.

    The resulting file, output.csv, should look something like this:

    Of course, please be gentle and don’t take this as an excuse to misuse Formstack’s service. They probably wouldn’t be happy with that :) We used this to recover our data and, barring the hours of cursing and hair-pulling as I tried to make this scraper work, it was quick and painless. I hope it helps someone else out there, too.

    2012 április 25, 05:05