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Article from Issue 188/2016

Updates on technologies, trends, and tools

OwnCloud Founder Resigns

Frank Karlitschek, the founder and CTO of ownCloud has resigned from the company that he founded some four years ago. He resigned due to conflicts between the interests of the company and the interests of the ownCloud community.

According to Karlitschek, the company failed to recognize the contributions and achievements of the ownCloud community. He said that the company has "a tendency to control the work too closely and discuss things internally."

Announcing his resignation, Karlitschek wrote in a blog post, "I thought a lot about this situation. Without sharing too much, there are some moral questions popping up for me. Who owns the community? Who owns ownCloud itself? And what matters more, short-term money or long-term responsibility and growth? Is ownCloud just another company, or do we also have to answer to the hundreds of volunteers who contribute and make it what it is today? These questions brought me to the very tough decisions: I have decided to leave my own company today. Yes, I handed in my resignation and will no longer work for ownCloud, Inc."

Karlitschek will continue to lead the open source ownCloud project, as long as the community allows him to do so. The conflict between the community and the company creates the possibility for an ownCloud fork.

Ubuntu 16.04 LTS Released

Canonical has announced the arrival of Ubuntu 16.04. The new release is a long-term support (LTS) release that's suitable for servers and enterprise customers. LTS releases are supported for five years, whereas regular releases are supported for nine months.

Ubuntu 16.04 comes with many new technologies and features aimed at enterprise users. This release introduces snaps, a new package format for containerized Ubuntu apps. Snaps will continue to co-exist with .deb-based packages for a foreseeable time. Canonical has added new redundancy features to the ZFS filesystem. The company has also added LXD, a pure container hypervisor with support for the recently released OpenStack Mitaka. With this release, Ubuntu is now available on IBM's z Systems and LinuxONE mainframe machines.

On the desktop, Ubuntu 16.04 comes with Unity 7.x, which disables the Dash online search by default. Users now have the ability to customize the appearance of menu items and can change the location of the Unity Launcher through the Unity Tweak tool. With this release, Ubuntu has dropped the homegrown Ubuntu Software Center and moved to Gnome Software.

Ubuntu 16.04 and its official flavors are available for download immediately.

Microsoft Visual Studio Code v1.0 Is Available for Linux

Microsoft has released the first stable version of Visual Studio Code (VS Code) for Linux and Mac OS X. The company claims that more than 500,000 developers are actively using VS Code each month. Visual Studio Code is Microsoft's code editor, which the company recently open sourced. Visual Studio Code is based on the Atom Shell (now known as Electron) framework, which is developed by GitHub and used in GitHub's text editor Atom.

Microsoft is offering the stable version of VS Code in .deb and .rpm binaries. The company is also offering Insider builds to provide developers with early access to new features and extensions currently in development.

In a blog post, the Visual Studio Code team writes, "VS Code was initially built for developers creating web apps using JavaScript and TypeScript. But in less than 6 months since we made the product extensible, the community has built over 1000 extensions that now provide support for almost any language or runtime in VS Code."

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