Fedora is a big project, and it’s hard to keep up with everything that goes on. This series highlights interesting happenings in five different areas every week. It isn’t comprehensive news coverage — just quick summaries with links to each. Here are the five things for November 19th, 2014:
Vote now in the first-ever Fedora Council elections!
The election for the two representative seats on the new Fedora Council is in progress! Fedora Magazine has email-based interviews with the five candidates to help you make an informed decision:
Voting is open to all Fedora Contributors, and closes promptly at 00:00 UTC on November 26th. That’s the afternoon or evening of the 25th in timezones to the west of the Prime Meridian, so don’t delay — read the interviews, and then vote now.
We’re frozen for F21 final
We are now in the “Final Freeze” for Fedora, the last polishing period before the release. This means that packages updates are only allowed via a special exception process, as we work to deliver a solid, stable release to our users on December 9th.
If you’re curious, you can read more on the wiki, or even better, as release candidates come out, help the Fedora Quality Assurance team take them through the validation process. You could be one of Fedora 20’s Heroes of QA!
Or if not, that’s cool — just a few more weeks and we’ll release what I’m confident will be the best Fedora yet.
Atomic Test Day
Speaking of testing… Fedora 21 will feature an experimental new cloud image called Fedora Atomic, based on the Project Atomic patterns. Tomorrow (Thursday — possibly today by the time you’re reading this!), the Fedora Cloud SIG is running a test day for Fedora 21 Atomic, looking specifically to get this into best possible shape for the release.
Another easy way to help is to contribute to the Fedora 21 Screenshots Library. Everything is pretty well explained at the link — install the beta (or a release candidate), update it, and take some screenshots.
We’d particularly like screenshots that show new features in Fedora 21 and that have an interesting composition. We need screenshots of Fedora 21 Workstation as well as each spin (KDE, Xfce, LXDE, etc.).
(And if you can figure out a good way to take a screenshot of Fedora Cloud… awesome.)
Fedora and Mozilla advertising
In an effort to reduce funding reliance on search engine companies (check it out — after 10 years, they just switched their default search provider from Google to Yahoo), Mozilla just introduced a new thing into Firefox which they call “enhanced tiles“, and this includes paid advertisements by default. Compared to most web advertising, Mozilla is certainly making efforts to be minimal about data collection — read technical details, and Mozilla’s blog post about trust, transparency, and control in advertising.
Nonetheless, many Fedora users and contributors have expressed concerns about this, to varying degrees, in a long thread on the devel list. (As always with monster threads, there’s really no need at this point to add more unless you’ve definitely got something new and unique to say, but new insights and constructive discussion are always welcome.) This resulted in a few media reports suggesting that we’re going to drop Firefox. The concerns are real — privacy, the implication of endorsement by Fedora, and a dislike and distrust of advertising in general. It seems likely that we’ll need to work on new policies, not least so upstream project know what we expect — as ads seem to rule the world today, this won’t be the last such situation. But we’re a long way off from making any drastic moves. Instead, we’ll work as a community, including with our friends over at Mozilla, to figure out an approach we can collectively accept.