12.21.14

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Links 22/12/2014: GNU/Linux at Sky News, Another Tizen Camera

Posted in News Roundup at 9:53 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

  • ASF publishes long-overdue Code Of Conduct

    We pride ourselves at The Apache Software Foundation on our principles of “community over code” and “don’t be a jerk”. But, alas, we’ve been slow to codify some of these things in public. Part of this, I’m sure, is that it’s easy to think we all just know how we’re supposed to treat people, and so you shouldn’t have to say, right?

  • Open-Source NFV Group Readying Software Releases for 2015

    In a recent post on the organization’s blog, Chris Price, chairman of the technical steering committee (TSC) for the Open Platform for NFV Project (OPNFV), said the panel is reviewing a broad array of project ideas to see what ones will be pursued by the committee. In addition, the wider OPNFV community will focus on establishing an integration and baseline platform while also creating several NFV-related projects that will find their way into the OPNFV’s second release of 2015.

  • Santa for sysadmins: I/O, shake it all about
  • OpenDaylight Developer Spotlight: Devin Avery

    OpenDaylight accepted seven student interns for the summer of 2014 to work in the community and receive hands-on development experience in SDN. Each intern worked closely with an active OpenDaylight developer as their mentor on a project that suited interest and community need.

  • Google Makes Cloud Dataflow SDK Open Source

    Cloud Dataflow, which it describes as “a platform to democratize large-scale data processing by enabling easier and more scalable access to data,” was just unveiled in June. It’s still an alpha release, but used internally in the company, Google says.

  • Google Open Sources “Cloud Dataflow” SDK, Built to Trump MapReduce

    All the way back in June, at Google I/O, Google pronounced that the venerable MapReduce data crunching scheme was “tired” and launched a service dubbed Cloud Dataflow that analyzes pipelines with “arbitrarily large datasets.” Dataflow was a much talked about star in a set of cloud services discussed at Google I/O and Google officials even confirmed that Dataflow had replaced MapReduce at Google. MapReduce, of course, is built for processing and generating large data sets with a parallel, distributed algorithm on clusters.

  • Events

    • GNOME Asia Summit 2015 to be hosted in Depok Indonesia

      The GNOME Asia Committee is pleased to announce that the upcoming GNOME.Asia Summit 2015 will be hosted in Depok Indonesia May 7-9 2015. It will be a great place to celebrate and explore the many new features and enhancements to GNOME 3.

    • GNOME.Asia Join Kaiyuanshe – Open Source Alliance in China

      We are thrilled to report that GNOME.Asia is a founding member of KAIYUANSHE(开源社) launched Oct 16, 2014. KAIYUANSHE roughly translated as “open source alliance,” is a group of enterprises, communities, and individuals in China supporting and promoting free and open source software (FOSS).

  • Web Browsers

  • Databases

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

    • The Document Foundation announces LibreOffice 4.3.5

      The Document Foundation announces LibreOffice 4.3.5, the fifth minor release of LibreOffice 4.3 “fresh” family, which is a stable release of the more advanced version of the software, targeted to individual and enterprise users. LibreOffice 4.3.5 contains over 70 bug fixes.

    • Public Interest, Software Freedom and Open Standards

      …importance of working with upstream projects and initiatives for a government like the UK Government.

      [...]

      Public interest and software freedom are not always aligned, in the sense that software freedom grant rights to users of Free Software but does not imply users will get what they want; in this case however, these two notions could become very much aligned. The same holds true for Open Standards: if major chunks of the UK’s public sector’s pool of documents is migrated to ODF, there is something close to a liability – and an opportunity- for this Government to ensure the format continues to thrive and be improved.

  • CMS

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

  • Public Services/Government

    • EU to fund Free Software code review

      The European Parliament has approved funding for several projects related to Free Software and privacy. In the EU budget for 2015, which the European Parliament adopted on December 17, the Parliamentarians have allocated up to one million Euro for a project to audit Free Software programs in use at the Commission and the Parliament in order to identify and fix security vulnerabilities.

    • Advocacy group: ‘ICT procurement is broken’

      Public administrations in the EU are hindering competition by asking for specific brands and products when procuring software solutions, says OpenForum Europe, an organisation campaigning for an open, competitive ICT market. “No progress has been made in recent years. In fact the practice of referring to brand names in public procurement has become more widespread”, OFE says.

    • Top Clippings For December 18th

      EU software procurement breaches rules more than ever before – OFE PDF – Because they really do prefer to feed what they perceive as corporate power brokers rather than work to create European value with European money.

      EU allocates half million euros for testing open source – FSFE – It’s a rounding error on the budget, but at least it’s something. Let’s see who gets it.

  • Openness/Sharing

    • The project that wants to bring an open source, print-at-home connected car to a road near you

      If cars are indeed set to become “smartphones on wheels”, able to connect to the internet and each other, there are a few things we need to settle first. What kind of operating system will they run on, for example, and will they use proprietary or open source applications? Will upgrades to the car’s underlying system happen as seamlessly as mobile OS updates do today, or will you have to call out a mechanic?

    • Halo 4 backend, SuperTuxKart, and more

      It looks like our Linux friend Tux enjoys racing karts! The SuperTuxKart team is wishing its gamers a Merry Christmas by releasing SuperTaxKart 0.8.2 beta. SuperTuxKart is a 3D kart racing game licensed under GPLV3 and available on many platforms, including Linux. This new beta release includes a new graphical engine, Antartica. You should really check out the release post and the screenshots of the improved graphics. Another new feature is online accounts in preparation of networked multiplayer gaming—which is still to come.

    • Sharing

      Why do we share? What makes it different from giving? And what does it have to do with strategy and impulse control? Mike talks to the scientist Nikolaus

    • They bonded over video games, now they’re building an open-source laser tag gun

      “We just wanted to play video games in real life,” said Ibrahim Pasha, the youthful CEO of Skirmos — an ambitious open-source laser tag gun started by a handful of former high school pals.

    • 8 open-source holiday gifts

      The holiday season is in full swing and you may still have a few people to check off your gift-giving list. If you’re at a loss for what to buy the open-source-focused engineer or maker in your life, take a gander at these 8 open-source gifts.

    • Open-Source Mixology: Cocktail Recipes by the Numbers
    • Open Data

      • Machine learning can help sift open source intelligence

        U.S. intelligence agencies and the military are increasingly leveraging analytics platforms based on machine learning to sift through data sources like social media. In the vernacular of the Pentagon, these efforts are generally referred to as open source intelligence initiatives.

Leftovers

  • Security

    • New 64-bit Linux Kernel Vulnerabilities Disclosed This Week
    • SSL Version Control

      In the meantime, you can use this extension to turn off SSLv3 in your copy of Firefox. When you install the add-on, it will set the minimum TLS version to TLS 1.0 (disabling SSLv3). If you want to change that setting later, like if you really need to access an SSLv3 site, just go to Tools / Add-ons and click the “Preferences” button next to the add-on. That will give you a drop-down menu to select the minimum TLS version you want to allow.

    • Don’t update NTP – stop using it

      Several severe vulnerabilities have been found in the time setting software NTP. The Network Time Protocol is not secure anyway due to the lack of a secure authentication mechanism. Better use tlsdate.

    • Linux ‘GRINCH’ vuln is AWFUL. Except, er, maybe it isn’t

      Alert Logic admits it has NOT seen any exploits that harness this vulnerability. Other security firms believe Alert Logic is overstating the risk, which Trend Micro characterises as “limited”.

      [...]

      An independent researcher first posted about the vulnerability – which he called PackageKit Privilege Escalation – almost a month ago before Alert Logic picked up on the threat and publicised it.

    • Friday’s security advisories
    • Git thee behind me, Git crit security bug!

      “Linux clients are not affected if they run in a case-sensitive filesystem,” the service’s warning reads, but are nonetheless encouraged to upgrade. Windows and Mac OS users have no excuse not to upgrade, as “Git clients running on OS X (HFS+) or any version of Microsoft Windows (NTFS, FAT) are exploitable through this vulnerability.”

  • Defence/Police/Secrecy/Aggression

    • On Terrorism

      Some politicians seem to act as if “terrorism” means a terrible crime committed by someone who doesn’t fit the speaker’s own racial & religious profile. Just because something induces terror in some or many people, that doesn’t make it terrorism. That diminishes the concept as well as grouping routine crime – for which society has millennia of experience and solutions – into the same bucket as a more subtle and serious phenomenon that preys on the meshed society.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • The World’s Biggest Car Company Wants to Get Rid of Gasoline

      The first thing you notice about the Mirai, Toyota’s new $62,000, four-door family sedan, is that it’s no Camry, an international symbol of bland conformity. First there are the in-your-face, angular grilles on the car’s front end. These deliver air to (and cool) a polymer fuel-cell stack under the hood. Then there’s the wavy, layered sides, meant to evoke a droplet of water. It looks like it was driven off the set of the Blade Runner sequel.

  • Finance

    • Gift-Giving Advice From the New York Times

      The Times might offer in its defense that this piece is labeled as one of Sullivan’s “Wealth Matters” columns, a feature specifically set up to give advice to the 1 percent (or the 0.01 percent) on how to “manage not only their money and fortune, but their overall well-being.” To which one can only note that it’s not a coincidence that the Times does not have a “Poverty Matters” column.

  • Censorship

    • BT, Sky, and Virgin “hijacking” browsers to push porn blocks

      BT, Sky, and Virgin Media are hijacking people’s web connections to force customers to make a decision about family-friendly web filters. The move comes as the December deadline imposed by prime minister David Cameron looms, with ISPs struggling to get customers to say yes or no to the controversial adult content blocks.

      [...]

      The hijacking works by intercepting requests for unencrypted websites and rerouting a user to a different page. ISPs are using the technique to communicate with all undecided customers. Attempting to visit WIRED.co.uk, for example, could result in a user being redirected to a page asking them about web filtering. ISPs cannot intercept requests for encrypted websites in the same way.

      BT is blocking people’s browsers until they make a decision, making it impossible for customers to visit any websites once the in-browser notification has appeared. A spokesperson for the UK’s biggest ISP said: “If customers do not make a decision, they are unable to continue browsing. The message will remain until the customer makes a decision.”

  • Privacy

    • Judge: It’s OK for cops to create fake Instagram accounts

      A federal judge in New Jersey has signed off on the practice of law enforcement using a fake Instagram account in order to become “friends” with a suspect—thus obtaining photos and other information that a person posts to their account.

    • Possible upcoming attempts to disable the Tor network

      The Tor Project has learned that there may be an attempt to incapacitate our network in the next few days through the seizure of specialized servers in the network called directory authorities. (Directory authorities help Tor clients learn the list of relays that make up the Tor network.) We are taking steps now to ensure the safety of our users, and our system is already built to be redundant so that users maintain anonymity even if the network is attacked. Tor remains safe to use.

    • [tor-talk] Warning: Do NOT use my mirrors/services until I have reviewed the situation

      Many of you by now are probably aware than I run a large exit node
      cluster for the Tor network and run a collection of mirrors (also ones
      available over hidden services).

      Tonight there has been some unusual activity taking place and I have
      now lost control of all servers under the ISP and my account has been
      suspended. Having reviewed the last available information of the
      sensors, the chassis of the servers was opened and an unknown USB
      device was plugged in only 30-60 seconds before the connection was
      broken. From experience I know this trend of activity is similar to
      the protocol of sophisticated law enforcement who carry out a search
      and seizure of running servers.

      Until I have had the time and information available to review the
      situation, I am strongly recommending my mirrors are not used under
      any circumstances. If they come back online without a PGP signed
      message from myself to further explain the situation, exercise extreme
      caution and treat even any items delivered over TLS to be potentially
      hostile.

  • Civil Rights

    • CIA Travel Advice To Operatives

      Today, 21 December 2014, WikiLeaks releases two classified documents by a previously undisclosed CIA office detailing how to maintain cover while travelling through airports using false ID – including during operations to infiltrate the European Union and the Schengen passport control system. This is the second release within WikiLeaks’ CIA Series, which will continue in the new year.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • Private Torrent Site Operators Face Criminal Trial

        In 2011, police in two countries coordinated to take down a private torrent site that had largely flown under the radar. This week, 3.5 years after the raid, two alleged operators of the site faced a criminal trial in Sweden. Having uploaded no content themselves, will they be held liable for the actions of their users?

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