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Automatically generate PHP documentation from Subversion with phpDocumentor

by Sander Marechal

The longer I program, the more structured my programming methods have become. Gone are the days of editing live spaghetti code directly on the server or frantic FTPing files after each tiny change. Today I not only stuff everything in Subversion just to keep track of changes, I also use it as a deployment mechanism. But I want more and I want it automated too! Currently I am busy playing with generated documentation and unit testing. Generated documentation is an all round great idea, but it has a drawback: You need to generate it all the time. So I set out to use Subversion’s post-commit hook to generate fresh documentation for my PHP projects using phpDocumentor.

I have written a little Python script that you can call from Subversion’s post commit hook. This script scans your subversion project for files that have the phpdoc property set. If any of these have changed, then it regenerates your documentation using phpDocumentor. It can also deal with files that are not kept in your Subversion repository and supports anything also supported by phpDocumentor.

It's official: ATI Radeon drivers to be open sourced

It's tuning out to be a great week. First OOXML defeated (for a few months) and now this:

AMD briefed Linux.com this morning on a pending announcement regarding the open sourcing of drivers for ATI graphics cards. It's official -- AMD will make code and specifications for ATI graphics cards available on the Internet on September 10.

On the issue of maintainership, Schlaeger says, "We want to enable the open source community to carry the development forward. We won't let them alone. It's not something that we dump a bit of code, a bit of spec, and say, 'This is it. You asked for it, you have it. Feel free, and have fun.'" He noted that the company took a similar approach on the Linux port of Opteron.

Linux Foundation discusses Microsoft threat after Linspire deal

Another one bites the dust. After Novell and Xandros, Linspire has signed away their future as well for a wad of cash in the short term. The reaction of the Linspire community isn't as negative as the Xandrosians but that should be no surprise. Xandrosians are the type of people with a big dislike for Microsoft and willing to pay to get far away from it. Linspire folk are on average more the kind of people that want a cheap/free Windows replacement.

The effects of these deals and Microsoft's patent protection racket will be discussed this week at the Linux Foundation summit at Google's Mountain view headquarters. The effect should be clear though. Under GPLv3 only the Novell deal is grandfathered in. Linspire (and Xandros) will get no such protection and will likely be barred from distributing GPLv3 code if they want to keep their Microsoft deal. That should end their distributions pretty quickly.

It's a good thing I run Debian. There's no corporate entity there to sell my rights to Microsoft behind my back. Red Hat should be equally safe despite that it's a commercial distro. And if the sky really does fall down one day… Oh well, there's still Solaris.

Configuring Debian/etch on a Dell Latitude D520

by Sander Marechal

A new job brings new toys :-) My new employer has supplied me with a Dell Latitude D520 laptop for programming. It came loaded with Windows XP professional which—ofcourse—had to go. Nothing inhibits productivity quite like Windows—except perhaps for the pool table and game consoles in the lunch room. Basic installation of Debian/etch went without a hitch as expected. I used the official 4.0 netinstall ISO using a cable instead of relying on wireless. After the reboot I did find a few small problems though. I'll describe them here, and what I did to fix it, so I can hopefully save other people the headaches.

Is Ubuntu set to become non-free?

by Sander Marechal

Last week at the Ubuntu Developer Summit the release goals for Feisty Fawn-scheduled to appear April 2007-were discussed and drawn up. Ubuntu's next version is aiming for some pretty good features such as a bullet proof X.org and network roaming. There's one change that bothers me to no end though: composite by default.

The problem is that, in order to reach this goal, they want to install and configure binary video drivers by default. That is a firm slap in the face of long term Ubuntu users everywhere though.

One Small Business Gladly Gives Microsoft the Boot

You are reminded that Microsoft Windows, portable Microsoft devices or laptops running Microsoft Software within our network is forbidden as of 9/20/06. If you have not already received your Linux Live CD, email Ken or Tammy and they will get you one, along with any instructions you may need. These are yours to keep and at no cost. You are encouraged to use them at home as you see fit.

Everyone should be so lucky to recieve an e-mail like that from your CEO out of the blue on a monday morning. Read part two on how Ken Starks a.k.a Helios of lobby4linux fame is helping an anonymous company that ran afoul of the MS-BSA protection racket migrate a 9 city/455 desktop computer business network from Windows to Linux — Fedora Core in this case.

If you missed how this came to be, then you should read part one: No one ever got fired for using Microsoft — Yes they did.