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Emergence is the process by which simple interactions give rise to more complex and ordered patterns and systems, such as the intricacies we see in snowflakes. The Beta release of Fedora 14 "Laughlin" similarly provides a preview of some of the best free and open source technology currently under development, integrated into an ordered distribution that anyone can freely download, use, modify, and redistribute.

The Fedora Project is a worldwide community of more than 20,000 collaborators who have signed the Contributor License Agreement. The daily interactions between contributors result in a vibrant, growing community dedicated to the advancement of free and open source software. The most anticipated product of this community is Fedora, the operating system released by the project approximately every six months. Fedora represents the culmination of work by hundreds of engineers and thousands of contributors, working together to produce a complex yet useful whole.

The Beta release marks the point where all users are encouraged to download and try out the release. At this point the release is relatively stable, but real-world use and reports from users helps identify any lingering bugs so they can be addressed before the final release. Here are just a few of the notable features you can test out in the Fedora 14 Beta:

  • The Spice (Simple Protocol for Independent Computing Environments) framework for providing a virtual desktop infrastructure, which is expected to be extended and integrated in future releases
  • Extended utilities for remote or powered-off management of servers with IPMI (Intelligent Platform Management Interface) capabilities
  • Updates in a wide variety of programming languages, including D programming language support and Rakudo Star, an early implementation of the Perl 6 specification based on the Parrot virtual machine
  • Improved debugging and integration with existing tools to enhance Fedora as a RAD platform
  • Alternative environments like Sugar, and software from the MeeGo™ project
  • The next-generation systemd management for faster startup and on-demand loading and unloading of services is expected to be offered as a technology preview in Fedora 14, and is likely to become the default initialization system in Fedora 15

Download the Beta today and let us know what you think. Look out for the general availability of Fedora 14 in early November.

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