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10.29.19

Links 30/10/2019: Fedora 31 Released, IDAD 2019 Report, Python 3.5.8 Ready

Posted in News Roundup at 10:15 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Server

      • Virtualization versus Containers: Is there a clear winner? Does it really matter?

        Will virtual machines disappear? No. Not anytime soon. This implies that the one day, container technology will eventually replace traditional virtual machines. So, I will save you from reading this entire piece to reach the conclusion of there being a clear winner. The answer is: no. There isn’t a clear winner primarily because both technologies are not one and the same. Each boasts their own respective features and functions and each solve their own set of problems. Understanding the problems in which each solves will better prepare you from misusing the technology.

      • OpenStack Charms 19.10 – Train, Policy Overrides and more

        This release introduces support for OpenStack Train on Ubuntu 18.04 LTS (via Ubuntu Cloud Archive) and Ubuntu 19.10. Train is the 20th OpenStack release which brings a lot of interesting features on its own. One of the most important additions are telco-specific extensions to Nova live migration. The benefits of moving guest machines from one hypervisor to another without shutting down the operating system of the guest are now also available in telco-specific environments with NUMA topology, pinned CPUs, SR-IOV ports attached and huge pages configured.

        In order to upgrade your Charmed OpenStack installation to Train, please follow the procedure described in the charm release notes.

        For more information about OpenStack Train, please refer to the upstream release notes.

      • Kafka Streams and How They Work

        Kafka streams seem like a daunting subject to many learners, but they don’t have to be. Just think of a stream as a sequence of events. In fact, when I put together information for this blog post, I joked that getting all this data would be like drinking from a waterfall. Chad (the Training Architect that created our new Kafka course) was able to take it a step further, and we went off on a tangent. This will help to explain it:

      • Kubernetes Documentation Survey

        In September, SIG Docs conducted its first survey about the Kubernetes documentation. We’d like to thank the CNCF’s Kim McMahon for helping us create the survey and access the results.

      • IBM

        • A PodPreset Based Webhook Admission Controller

          One of the fundamental principles of cloud native applications is the ability to consume assets that are externalized from the application itself during runtime. This feature affords portability across different deployment targets as properties may differ from environment to environment. This pattern is also one of the principles of the Twelve Factor app and is supported through a variety of mechanisms within Kubernetes. Secrets and ConfigMaps are implementations in which assets can be stored whereas the injection point within an application can include environment variables or volume mounts. As Kubernetes and cloud native technologies have matured, there has been an increasing need to dynamically configure applications at runtime even though Kubernetes makes use of a declarative configuration model. Fortunately, Kubernetes contains a pluggable model that enables the validation and modification of applications submitted to the platform as pods, known as admission controllers. These controllers can either accept, reject or accept with modifications the pod which is attempting to be created.

          The ability to modify pods at creation time allows both application developers and platform managers the ability to offer capabilities that surpass any limitation that may be imposed by strict declarative configurations. One such implementation of this feature is a concept called PodPresets which enables the injection of ConfigMaps, Secrets, volumes, volume mounts, and environment variables at creation time to pods matching a set of labels. Kubernetes has supported enabling the use of this feature since version 1.6 and the OpenShift Container Platform (OCP) made it available in the 3.6 release. However, due to a perceived direction change for dynamically injecting these types of resources into pods, the feature became deprecated in version 3.7 and removed in 3.11 which left a void for users attempting to take advantage of the provided capabilities.

        • Verifying signatures of Red Hat container images

          Security-conscious organizations are accustomed to using digital signatures to validate application content from the Internet. A common example is RPM package signing. Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) validates signatures of RPM packages by default.

          In the container world, a similar paradigm should be adhered to. In fact, all container images from Red Hat have been digitally signed and have been for several years. Many users are not aware of this because early container tooling was not designed to support digital signatures.

          In this article, I’ll demonstrate how to configure a container engine to validate signatures of container images from the Red Hat registries for increased security of your containerized applications.

          In the lack of widely accepted standards, Red Hat designed a simple approach to provide security to its customers. This approach is based on detached signatures served by a standard HTTP server. The Linux container tools (Podman, Skopeo, and Buildah) have built-in support for detached signatures, as well as the CRI-O container engine from Kubernetes and the Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform.

        • Advanced telco services and better customer experience need modern support systems

          It seems nearly everything we do these days involves the internet – communication, commerce, entertainment, banking, filing taxes, home security, even monitoring our health – creating a wealth of opportunity for communications service providers (CSPs) to deliver innovative and advanced services, increasing and expanding their revenue streams. But it’s a significant challenge to do so using the traditional, proprietary and monolithic infrastructures in place for decades. To achieve success, it’s critical to modernize business and network systems with open source, cloud-native solutions, and move operations support systems (OSS) and business support systems (BSS) to microservices-based architectures.

          Red Hat believes that by transforming OSS/BSS to a more modern architecture, service providers will be in a better position to improve customer experience and create new revenue and business models, and operate more efficiently. But moving to a modern OSS/BSS architecture isn’t without challenges.

        • Red Hat Customer Success Stories: Automating management and improving communications security

          Datacom is a IT-based service provider in Asia Pacific with more than 5,000 staff and a vision of designing, building, and running IT systems and processes that are aligned to its clients’ business goals. As a Red Hat Advanced Business Partner, Datacom provides solutions to its market across Red Hat’s product lines.

          Because Ansible was getting the attention of many Datacom customers, the company chose to focus on using Ansible as the orchestration glue for automation. Datacom constructed the platform which made it easily consumable while allowing customers to leverage the automation elements. Datacom is witnessing application developers use the infrastructure stack to deploy the apps on different technologies.

          Joseph Tejal is Datacom’s Red Hat Certified Specialist in Ansible Automation based in Wellington. Tejal explained that it wasn’t by chance that Datacom standardized on Red Hat Ansible Automation.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

    • Kernel Space

      • Running on Intel? If you want security, disable hyper-threading, says Linux kernel maintainer

        Linux kernel dev Greg Kroah-Hartman reckons Intel Simultaneous Multithreading (SMT) – also known as hyper-threading – should be disabled for security due to MDS (Microarchitectural Data Sampling) bugs.

        Kroah-Hartman, who was speaking at the Open Source summit in Lyons, has opened up on the subject before. “I gave a talk last year about Spectre and how Linux reacted to it,” he told The Reg. “And then this year it’s about things found since the last talk. It’s more and more of the same types of problems.

      • Linus Torvalds: ‘I’m not a programmer anymore’

        Linus Torvalds, Linux’s creator, doesn’t make speeches anymore. But, what he does do, and he did again at Open Source Summit Europe in Lyon France is have public conversations with his friend Dirk Hohndel, VMware’s Chief Open Source Officer. In this keynote discussion, Torvalds revealed that he doesn’t think he’s a programmer anymore.

        So what does the person everyone thinks of as a programmer’s programmer do instead? Torvalds explained…

      • Linux 5.3.8
        I'm announcing the release of the 5.3.8 kernel.
        All users of the 5.3 kernel series must upgrade.
        The updated 5.3.y git tree can be found at:
        git://git.kernel.org/pub/scm/linux/kernel/git/stable/linux-stable.git linux-5.3.y
        and can be browsed at the normal kernel.org git web browser:
        
        https://git.kernel.org/?p=linux/kernel/git/stable/linux-s...
        
        thanks,
        greg k-h
        
        
      • Linux 4.19.81
      • Linux 4.14.151
      • Linux 4.9.198
      • Linux 4.4.198
      • Trimming systemd Halved The Boot Time On A PocketBeagle ARM Linux Board

        Happening this week over in Lyon, France is the Embedded Linux Conference Europe and Open-Source Summit Europe events. Developer Chris Simmonds spoke today about systemd and boot time optimizations around it.

        Besides going over the basics of systemd that all Phoronix readers should be well familiar with, much of his talk was on reducing the boot time with systemd. For reference he talked about his optimizations using a PocketBeagle ARM board running Debian Stretch.

        Debian on this low-power ARM board took 66 seconds to boot with some 18 seconds for the kernel and over 47 seconds for the user-space bits. With some basic tuning, he was able to chop that in half to around 30 seconds.

      • Graphics Stack

        • A Lot More Intel Tiger Lake / Gen12 Xe Graphics Code Merged To Mesa 19.3

          With Mesa 19.3 embarking on its feature freeze this week unless the period is extended, Intel developers have been working on landing more of their Gen12 graphics code into this release for future Tiger Lake CPUs as well as the basis for their first Xe discrete graphics card.

          For Mesa 19.3 is a lot of Intel’s Gen13 graphics code bring-up to go along with their changes coming for Linux 5.5. For both kernel and user-space, it will likely be a few more releases each before the Gen12 graphics support is squared away, which should be fine since the first Xe graphics card isn’t expected until H2’2020 and the same goes for the Tiger Lake CPUs with Gen12 graphics.

        • Mesa 19.3 Adds Support For New AMDGPU Reset Interface

          AMD open-source developer Marek Olšák is landing the last of his changes for the Mesa 19.3 imminent feature freeze.

          Among the changes merged overnight were for initializing shader compilers in threads on-demand as what appears to mostly benefit Piglit when spinning up its many shaders for testing. Mesa 19.3 has also updated the AMDGPU winsys code to support the new AMDGPU reset interface plumbed through the kernel and Mesa DRM library (libdrm).

        • NVIDIA Announces GeForce GTX 1650 SUPER + GTX 1660 SUPER

          After weeks of information leaking on these new ~$200 GTX SUPER graphics cards, NVIDIA today officially announced the GTX 1660 SUPER that is shipping today and the GTX 1650 SUPER that will hit store shelves in late November.

          The NVIDIA GTX 1660 SUPER is being marketed as 1.5x faster than the GeForce GTX 1060 for popular Windows games. The GTX 1660 SUPER features 15 Gbps GDDR6 video memory and the Turing upgrade over Pascal provides a significant performance uplift. The GTX 1660 SUPER will begin shipping today starting at $229 USD.

        • NVIDIA Launches Upgraded Shield TV with Tegra X1+ Processor
    • Applications

      • Free Password Manager KeePassXC 2.5.0 Adds Paper Backup, Database Statistics, Re-Enables Wayland Support

        KeePassXC 2.5.0 was released recently with important improvements, like an option to export a database to an HTML file (for paper backup), database statistics, re-enabled Wayland support, and more.

        KeePassXC is a free and open-source password manager started as a community fork of KeePassX (which itself is a fork of KeePass), which is not actively maintained. The application is built using Qt and runs on Linux, Windows and macOS. For its database, KeePassXC uses the KeePass 2.x (.kdbx) password database format as its native file format in versions 3.1 and 4, using AES encryption with a 256 bit key.

        There’s no cloud synchronization built into KeePassXC, but this can easily be done through third-party cloud provides like Dropbox, Google Drive, Nextcloud, and so on.

      • Cloud Storage GUI Rclone Browser 1.6.0 Adds New Options, Fixes

        The Rclone Browser fork I was telling you about a while back keeps improving, with the latest release adding new options in the application preferences, as well as an important fix on Windows that gets mounting/unmounting to work properly.

        Rclone Browser is a cross-platform Qt5 GUI for Rclone, a command line tool to synchronize (and mount) files from remote cloud storage services like Google Drive, OneDrive, Nextcloud, Dropbox, Amazon Drive and S3, Mega, and others. Use it to copy a file from one cloud storage service to another, from a cloud storage to your system or the other way around, and to mount some cloud storage on your system with a single click.

        Since the original Rclone Browser hasn’t been updated in almost 3 years, a new developer has forked it, fixing some issues that started happening with new Rclone versions, while also adding new functionality.

      • WordPress 5.3 RC3

        The third release candidate for WordPress 5.3 is now available!

        WordPress 5.3 is currently scheduled to be released on November 12 2019, but we need your help to get there—if you haven’t tried 5.3 yet, now is the time!

      • Kiwi TCMS: Kiwi TCMS 7.1

        We’re happy to announce Kiwi TCMS version 7.1! This is a small improvement update which includes database schema and API changes, several other improvements, internal refactoring and updated translations.

    • Instructionals/Technical

    • Games

      • The Humble Day of the Devs Bundle 2019 is out, get ‘Minit’ plus ‘ToeJam & Earl’ cheap

        Humble have another bundle! The Humble Day of the Devs Bundle 2019 just recently went live with a small selection of games and some good picks have Linux support too.

        In the $1+ tier you get The Haunted Island, a Frog Detective Game and ART SQOOL although neither offer up Linux support sadly.

        When you pay more than the average you get Flipping Death and Battle Chef Brigade, the latter of which does actually have Linux support it’s just not advertised as such on Steam.

      • Play classic games using RetroArch Emulator in Ubuntu/Linux Mint

        Do you love to play classic games? If yes, then you are on the right page. RetroArch is a frontend utility for emulators, game engines and media players. You can play wide variety of classic of computer and consoles games. It is free, open-source and cross-platform runs on Linux, Most Windows versions, Mac OS X; On top of all that, RetroArch also runs on iOS and Android for tablets and phones, as well as on game consoles like PS2, PS3, PSP, PS Vita, Wii, Wii U, 2DS, 3DS, Switch, and more! If you have device which is not mentioned here or simply you don’t want to install it on your system or you just want to give it a shot then you can run RetroArch online in your web-browser.

      • Eight Dragons brings retro-inspired beat ‘em up action to you and a bunch of friends

        Eight Dragons? Does that mean it’s like four times as good as the classic Double Dragon? Asking the important questions here today on GOL.

        You might be able to find the answer to that yourself, as the developer sent word to us on Twitter that their new beat ‘em up that’s currently in Early Access recently added Linux support. Extend Mode have ported it over from their in-house engine to Unity which has helped it be more cross-platform.

      • ULTRAKILL is a first-person shooter for fans of super speed and lots of blood

        ULTRAKILL, as the name might suggest, is a pretty over-the-top game. It’s an upcoming first-person shooter from Hakita that now has a free Prelude build out.

      • Vampire: The Masquerade – Coteries of New York shows off some gameplay, releasing December 4

        Readying for release on December 4, Vampire: The Masquerade – Coteries of New York now actual has some in-game footage available.

        Not to be mixed up with Bloodlines 2 which is not coming to Linux (as far as we know), Vampire: The Masquerade – Coteries of New York is since it mentions it on the Steam store page and it was also clearly stated in the trailer announcement too on Steam.

      • Ubuntu 19.10 Radeon Linux Gaming Performance Plus Linux 5.4 / Mesa 19.3 Benchmarks

        For those curious about the performance of AMD Radeon open-source Linux gaming out-of-the-box on the newly released Ubuntu 19.10, here are those benchmarks compared to the Radeon driver state on Ubuntu 19.04. Additionally, there are benchmark results if manually upgrading your Ubuntu 19.10 installation to using the in-development Linux 5.4 kernel and Mesa 19.3 for the very newest AMD Linux driver support.

      • Challenging open-world turn-based RPG ‘Stoneshard’ delayed until February 2020

        Ink Stains Games recently announced their impressive looking open-world turn-based RPG, Stoneshard, will be delayed until February 2020.

        While it sounds like development is going well, as they’ve been doing closed-beta testing and they say the quality is up to their standards, some apparently important mechanics aren’t yet implemented. They said it’s already fun to play but it can end too quickly so they’re working to expand the core gameplay loop with more of everything.

      • Bake ‘n Switch looks like a ridiculously fun couch co-op and PvP game coming to Linux

        Overcooked isn’t the only multiplayer cooking game around now, as Bake ‘n Switch has been announced and it’s going to be supporting Linux too.

        Bake ‘n Switch seems quite different to the Overcooked series though, it’s not all about preparing special dishes against a timer. Instead, you work together or against each other to combine the doughs and the bigger the dough the higher the score. You also need to fight off “Spores and Stickies” which might give you some sort of power-up. It seems to be a lot more crazy-action orientated, rather than worrying about overcooking items and combining dishes.

      • Survival Vacancy looks like a mix of Factorio and Terraria and it’s now in Early Access

        Survival Vacancy follows a nuclear apocalypse and it’s your job to save as many people as possible. To do so you need to explore the ruined world, mine for resources and build up an underground city.

        Arriving on Steam in Early Access a few days ago, Survival Vacancy from developer Mind Leak looks intriguing as it really does seem to mix the styles of both Factorio and Terraria. It looks a little rough right now but it has a nice idea.

      • Eight Dragons brings retro-inspired beat ‘up up action to you and a bunch of friends

        Eight Dragons? Does that mean it’s like four times as good as the classic Double Dragon? Asking the important questions here today on GOL.

        You might be able to find the answer to that yourself, as the developer sent word to us on Twitter that their new beat ‘em up that’s currently in Early Access recently added Linux support. Extend Mode have ported it over from their in-house engine to Unity which has helped it be more cross-platform.

      • NVIDIA announce the GeForce GTX 1660 SUPER and the GeForce 1650 SUPER

        Today, NVIDIA officially lifted the lid on two new GPUs with the GeForce GTX 1660 SUPER and the GeForce 1650 SUPER. Both of them will continue using the Turing architecture.

        Aimed at the money conscious gamer, with NVIDIA aiming their sights at the entry-level market to give you a reasonable 1080p experience. That’s still the most popular resolution with gamers, as shown by Valve’s survey and our own.

      • Revive the dead and make them dance in Skeletal Dance Party’s Afterparty update

        Skeletal Dance Party, the amusing musical dungeon crawling RPG from Catalope Games and No Studio in Particular just had a big Afterparty update.

        What’s Halloween without some sort of gathering? Skeletal Dance Party already felt like a party, a pretty unusual one that is. With skeletons dancing across levels with whatever weapons you come across and now it just got a whole lot bigger in a free update.

      • Valve ends Counter-Strike: Global Offensive container key trading and selling

        The team at Valve working on Counter-Strike: Global Offensive have now put an end to the selling and trading of new container keys.

        In a post on the official site, the Valve team said as of now all keys purchased in-game are tied to that Steam account so you can’t trade or sell them on the Steam Market. Existing keys are not affected but they will eventually run out of course. The question is, why? Well, according to Valve “worldwide fraud networks have recently shifted to using CS:GO keys to liquidate their gains” and “nearly all key purchases that end up being traded or sold on the marketplace are believed to be fraud-sourced” so they’re putting a stop to it.

      • The RollerCoaster Tycoon 2 open source game engine ‘OpenRCT2′ v0.2.4 is out

        The team keeping RollerCoaster Tycoon 2 alive with the power of open source have pushed out another fine looking release of OpenRCT2.

        Overall, v0.2.4 seems to be mostly a release aimed at cleaning up existing features with a ton of bug fixes. However, a couple of new features and improvements did make it in. They’ve increased the number of ride musics playing simultaneously from 2 to 32, which should solve an issue hearing rides currently on the screen when at a higher screen resolution. The “image list” capacity was increased by around 100k units, which should help stop multiple crash bugs when people hit the limits.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • KDE Kills Off The ‘Cashew’, Replaces It With Something Less Nutty

          This little icon (which could be moved around the workspace) provided users with a shortcut to editing their desktop layout (add/remove panels, activities, widgets, etc).

          Despite having the shape of a poorly filled water balloon the feature was actually a ‘desktop toolbox’ shortcut.

          Now a) I didn’t know the icon was supposed to resemble a cashew until about 20 mins ago and b) I’m wilfully ignoring the fact that the ‘desktop toolbox’ shortcut has actually been represented by a hamburger menu since Plasma 5 arrived.

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • Pango Dropping Support For Bitmap Fonts Is Frustrating Some Linux Desktop Users

          Cleaning up of the Pango layout engine library as some much needed housekeeping by GNOME developers resulted in shifting to the Harfbuzz library for font loading. That quietly meant dropping support for bitmap fonts from Pango, which is now reaching Linux desktop users when upgrading to the Pango 1.44 stable release.

          Some Linux desktop users are being surprised when their Pango-using applications are no longer loading their bitmap fonts but just showing square blocks or similar artifacts instead. Pango, of course, is the layout engine used by GTK and Qt among other desktop software.

    • Distributions

      • Screenshots/Screencasts

      • SUSE/OpenSUSE

        • ASpeed DRM Driver Ported To Atomic Mode-Setting

          The “AST” DRM/KMS display driver that can be used with the many servers supporting ASpeed display hardware now has work pending for atomic mode-setting.

          SUSE’s Thomas Zimmermann sent out the set of nine patches that convert the existing AST KMS driver into supporting atomic mode-setting as well as universal planes.

        • openSUSE Leap 15.0 Reaches End of Life on November 30th 2019

          openSUSE Leap 15.0 reaches the end of life on November 30, 2019. openSUSE Leap 15.0 reaches the end of its support after 1.5 years of life.

          openSUSE Leap 15.0 is based on SUSE Linux Enterprise (SLE) 15 resources, released May 25, 2018.

      • Fedora Family

        • Fedora 31 is here — download the world’s best desktop Linux distribution now

          Is Fedora popular? Well, is any desktop Linux distribution truly popular in the grand scheme of things? I mean, look, Windows holds an insurmountable lead in the desktop operating system space — it cannot be denied. Amongst Linux distributions, however, yes, Fedora is very popular comparatively. Why do people choose it over other distros, such as Ubuntu, MX Linux, or Manjaro? It’s simple — Fedora is a no-nonsense operating system with a genuine focus on free and open source software. Not to mention, it is fairly bleeding edge while remaining stable.

          So, yeah, Fedora is wonderful. Today, however, the Linux distribution gets even better. You see, following the beta period, Fedora 31 is now available for download. Is it an exciting release? No, not really. Sure, enthusiasts will find themselves thrilled withe inclusion of the GNOME 3.34 desktop environment (with Qt Wayland by default), Linux 5.3 kernel, and Mesa 9.2, but otherwise, it is fairly boring. You know what? That’s not a bad thing. In 2019, Fedora is simply a mature and stable operating system that only needs to follow an evolutionary path at this time — not revolutionary. It stands alone as the world’s best desktop Linux distribution.

        • Fedora 31 Released For This Innovative Linux Distribution Supported By Red Hat

          Fedora 31 is now officially available as the latest update for this prominent Linux distribution backed by Red Hat and continuing uninterrupted under IBM’s ownership of Red Hat.

          Fedora 31 features the Linux 5.3 kernel, Mesa 9.2, GCC 9.2.1, GNU C Library 2.30, GNOME 3.34, RPM 4.15, Golang 1.13, Perl 5.30, and all of the other up-to-date packages we expect to find from new Fedora releases. Besides updating to the latest packages, Fedora 31 has worked on removing its remaining Python 2 packages, disabling root password log-ins with SSH by default, using cgroups v2 by default, removing i686 repositories, and a ton of other changes.

        • Fedora 31 is officially here!

          It’s here! We’re proud to announce the release of Fedora 31. Thanks to the hard work of thousands of Fedora community members and contributors, we’re celebrating yet another on-time release. This is getting to be a habit!

          If you just want to get to the bits without delay, go to https://getfedora.org/ right now. For details, read on!

        • Upgrading Fedora 30 to Fedora 31

          Fedora 31 is available now. You’ll likely want to upgrade your system to get the latest features available in Fedora. Fedora Workstation has a graphical upgrade method. Alternatively, Fedora offers a command-line method for upgrading Fedora 30 to Fedora 31.

        • What’s new in Fedora 31 Workstation

          Fedora 31 Workstation is the latest release of our free, leading-edge operating system. You can download it from the official website here right now. There are several new and noteworthy changes in Fedora 31 Workstation. Read more details below.

          Fedora 30 Workstation includes the latest release of GNOME Desktop Environment for users of all types. GNOME 3.34 in Fedora 31 Workstation includes many updates and improvements, including…

        • Fedora 31 Officially Released with GNOME 3.34 & Linux 5.3, Drops 32-Bit Support

          Fedora 31 has been in development during the past six months, and after a one-week delay, it’s finally here packed with some of the latest and greatest Open Source software and GNU/Linux technologies, including the GNOME 3.34 desktop environment, Linux 5.3 kernel, Glibc 2.30, Python 3, and Node.js 12.

          However, with this release, Fedora Linux says goodbye to 32-bit installations as it no longer offers ISO images to allow users to install the operating system on older machines with 32-bit processors, from more than 20 years ago. The 32-bit software repositories will also not be available anymore.

        • Fedora 31: Peering into Red Hat Enterprise Linux’s future

          After a brief delay, while last-minute bugs were fixed, Fedora 31 has just rolled out the door, and besides being a worthy Linux distribution in its own right, it’s even more interesting for what it tells us about parent company Red Hat’s future plans for Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL).

          We tend to think of Fedora as a desktop operating system, but while it’s great at that role, it’s far more than that. Besides golden oldies such as the self-explanatory Fedora Workstation and Fedora Server, we also now have Fedora CoreOS, Fedora IoT, and Fedora Silverblue.

        • Fedora 31 is here

          Fedora Magazine announces the release of Fedora 31. This release includes the Fedora Toolbox for launching and managing personal workspace containers. The Fedora Editions include Workstation, Server, with CoreOS and IoT in a preview state. Alternate architectures include ARM AArch64, Power, and S390x. However the 32-bit only i686 system has been dropped.

        • Charles-Antoine Couret: Fedora 31 est disponible
        • Fedora Workstation, Server 31 Released. Here’s What’s New

          Fedora Linux the Linux distribution developed by community supported Fedora project and sponsored by Red Hat lands yet another milestone with the release of Fedora Workstation 31.This release brings many exciting new changes and features with its workstation, server release alongside its “spins”. Here’s what’s new.

        • Fedora 31 Now Generally Available

          The Fedora Project, a Red Hat, Inc. sponsored and community-driven open source collaboration, today announced the general availability of Fedora 31, the latest version of the fully open source Fedora operating system. Fedora 31 includes new features that help to address a host of modern computing challenges, from building and running cloud native applications to driving innovation in the connected world.

          Each Fedora edition is designed to address specific use cases for modern developers and IT teams with Fedora Workstation and Fedora Server providing open operating systems built to meet the needs of forward-looking developers and server projects. Fedora 31 also sees the continued evolution of emerging Fedora editions, including Fedora CoreOS, Fedora IoT and Fedora Silverblue. Fedora 31 brings enhancements to all editions with updates to the common underlying packages, from bug fixes and performance tweaks to new versions.

      • Debian Family

        • Debian To Seek A General Resolution Over Their Init System Policy

          Debian Project Leader Sam Hartman has determined it’s necessary to pursue a general resolution among Debian developers over their init system policy and whether to still care about init system diversity outside of systemd.

          Last month we wrote about Debian developers re-evaluating their interest in “init system diversity”. Some Debian developers have been working on elogind support to help ensure Debian isn’t explicitly tied to systemd while other Debian developers don’t have the energy/resources/interest in dealing with elogind and other non-systemd issues that may come up via bug reports or packaging review.

        • Wouter Verhelst: Announcing policy-rcd-declarative

          A while ago, Debian’s technical committee considered a request to figure out what a package should do if a service that is provided by that package does not restart properly on upgrade.

          Traditional behavior in Debian has been to restart a service on upgrade, and to cause postinst (and, thus, the packaging system) to break if the daemon start fails. This has obvious disadvantages; when package installation is not initiated by a person running apt-get upgrade in a terminal, failure to restart a service may cause unexpected downtime, and that is not something you want to see.

          At the same time, when restarting a service is done through the command line, having the packaging system fail is a pretty good indicator that there is a problem here, and therefore, it tells the system administrator early on that there is a problem, soon after the problem was created — which is helpful for diagnosing that issue and possibly fixing it.

        • Debian LTS report for October 2019

          This month I was allocated 0 hours and carried over 14.5 hours from August. Unfortunately, once again I didn’t find time to work on LTS issues. Since I expect it to stay that way for a few more months, I set the limit of hours that I get allocated to 0 last month already. I’ll give back the remaining 14.5 hours and continue with LTS work once I again have some spare cycles to do so.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Ubuntu Server development summary – 29 October 2019

          The purpose of this communication is to provide a status update and highlights for any interesting subjects from the Ubuntu Server Team. If you would like to reach the server team, you can find us at the #ubuntu-server channel on Freenode. Alternatively, you can sign up and use the Ubuntu Server Team mailing list or visit the Ubuntu Server discourse hub for more discussion.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Framasoft, Disroot, & PrivacyToolsIO: All-In-One Ethical Online Service Providers

        For people who want to be free from Google, there is a good news that now exist 3 providers of ethical alternatives namely Framasoft.org, Disroot.org, and PrivacyTools.io. They provide all the services gratis so ethical services will be accessible for everybody. By ethical service I meant network service that based on free software and with commitment to user privacy as privacy-security community recommends it. By all-in-one here I meant as close as possible to Google in number of services they provide. This can’t be avoided to introduces you to new names to you like Searx, Nextcloud, Gitea, and such free software that are now popular in our community. I hope this review reaches as many audiens as possible to make people aware about existence of privacy services. Now let’s go!

      • What OSI Affiliates Are Doing For Open Source.

        The Open Source Initiative has seventy affiliate members. They represent a broad swath of the open source community, representing educational institutions, projects, and communities. We’re especially proud of our affiliates’ excellent work: thought leadership in open source philosophy; forward-thinking, community-building initiatives; and the work they do as part of fulfilling their missions to develop, innovate, and encourage the adoption of open source technology.

        We wanted to take a moment to share the work of some OSI affiliate organizations and their stellar leadership across the greater open source community in community, design, and technology. Our goal is to offer just a few examples of how some of our affiliates are working which may inspire andinform your own efforts.

        Brandeis University recently launched a program in Open Source Technology Management, to help train those seeking leadership roles in companies and communities, giving them a foundation in the value and necessity of open source software and philosophy. The program at Brandeis also creates a space for students to work directly with individuals active in the open source movement.

        Creative Commons completely revolutionized licensing for content and media through the creation of the Creative Commons suite of open licenses. Their optimism and dedication to building a cultural commons have inspired countless people around the world to adopt open licenses and share their creative works.

      • The best (and worst) ways to influence your open community

        After you’ve established a positive reputation in an open community—hopefully, as we discussed in our previous article, by being an active member in and contributing productively to that community—you’ll have built up a healthy “bank balance” of credibility you can use to influence the direction of that community.

      • Events

        • Peruvian International Scientific Meeting: Sinapsis 2019

          The first speaker pictured is Prof. Jorge Chau from the Leibniz Institute in Germany and his talk named “Studies of mesospheric and lower thermospheric turbulence and waves with novel multi-static MIMO specular meteor radars”. He made a thoughtful and impassioned explanation of his work. This time I understood maths and its application. My second favorite talk was given by Lucia Fitts Vargas. She talked about “Effects of disturbances and land used change on carbon stocks in six US states ” from the University of Minnesota. I liked her talk because she was able to explain in a very simple way the presence of carbon in trees in our jungle in Peru and then she gradually jumped to the complexity explanation about her carbon stock research and tools used in the USA. I was impressed by the research of Jacqueline Valverde Villegas from INSERM, Université de Montpellier, France about the HIV: “Aspectos genéticos e inmunológicos en la infección por el VIH/SIDA”, and the work of Juan Carlos Hurtado from the University of Barcelona: “Identificación de las causas de muerte en países de mediana y baja renta a través de la autopsia mínimamente invasiva”. I overheard good acceptance for the talk of Dr. Luis Dalguer about the earthquakes prediction in Switzerland: “Terremotos: su mecanismo físico, su predicción y prevención de desastres”. Lastly, the talk of Lucila Menacho from the University of Engineering in Peru named “Study, construction, and applications of supercapacitors based on graphene” was an interactive talk that everyone in the room paid attention. Congrats in general to all because all they were interesting topics.

        • FOSDEM 2020 Real-Time Communications Call for Participation

          You can use HTML and links in your bio, abstract and description.

          If you maintain a blog, please consider providing us with the URL of a feed with posts tagged for your RTC-related work.

          We will be looking for relevance to the conference and devroom themes, presentations aimed at developers of free and open source software about RTC-related topics.

          Please feel free to suggest a duration between 20 minutes and 55 minutes but note that the final decision on talk durations will be made by the devroom administrators based on the number of received proposals. As the two previous devrooms have been combined into one, we may decide to give shorter slots than in previous years so that more speakers can participate.

          [...]

          Generally, it was a good experience. I have not seen another peruvian in person more than a year and living again for a week with Wilson Valerio, Martin, Lucas, Alisa and others, made me remember my roots and way I am in Europe. I am glad I tried the best chocolate!

      • Web Browsers

        • Mozilla

          • Password dos and don’ts

            So many accounts, so many passwords. That’s online life. The average person with a typical online presence is estimated to have close to 100 online accounts, and that figure is rising. If you’re reading this, you’re probably in that category. You have a collection of primary accounts that you care the most about because they’re important and you access them frequently, like your email, social media, bank, media subscriptions, streaming services, etc.

            Then you most likely also have a handful of lower priority accounts you set up without much thought, and some that you forgot about. Since those accounts are low priority, maybe you weren’t careful about password hygiene, and you slipped into bad habits like password reuse which can put your other accounts at a security risk should there be a data breach.

          • Mozilla Open Policy & Advocacy Blog: A Year in Review: Fighting Online Disinformation

            A year ago, Mozilla signed the first ever Code of Practice on Disinformation, brokered in Europe as part of our commitment to an internet that elevates critical thinking, reasoned argument, shared knowledge, and verifiable facts. The Code set a wide range of commitments for all the signatories, from transparency in political advertising to the closure of fake accounts, to address the spread of disinformation online. And we were hopeful that the Code would help to drive change in the platform and advertising sectors.

            Since then, we’ve taken proactive steps to help tackle this issue, and today our self assessment of this work was published by the European Commission. Our assessment covers the work we’ve been doing at Mozilla to build tools within the Firefox browser to fight misinformation, empower users with educational resources, support research on disinformation and lead advocacy efforts to push the ecosystem to live up to their own commitments within the Code of Practice.

          • A Year with Spoke: Announcing the Architecture Kit

            Spoke, our 3D editor for creating environments for Hubs, is celebrating its first birthday with a major update. Last October, we released the first version of Spoke, a compositing tool for mixing 2D and 3D content to create immersive spaces. Over the past year, we’ve made a lot of improvements and added new features to make building scenes for VR easier than ever. Today, we’re excited to share the latest feature that adds to the power of Spoke: the Architecture Kit!

            We first talked about the components of the Architecture Kit back in March. With the Architecture Kit, creators now have an additional way to build custom content for their 3D scenes without using an external tool. Specifically, we wanted to make it easier to take existing components that have already been optimized for VR and make it easy to configure those pieces to create original models and scenes. The Architecture Kit contains over 400 different pieces that are designed to be used together to create buildings – the kit includes wall, floor, ceiling, and roof pieces, as well as windows, trim, stairs, and doors.

          • Auditing For Accessibility Problems With Firefox Developer Tools

            Since its debut in Firefox 61, the Accessibility Inspector in the Firefox Developer Tools has evolved from a low-level tool showing the accessibility structure of a page. In Firefox 70, the Inspector has become an auditing facility to help identify and fix many common mistakes and practices that reduce site accessibility. In this post, I will offer an overview of what is available in this latest release.

          • SourceForge download issues (and Github issues issues)

            There are two high-priority problems currently affecting TenFourFox’s download and development infrastructure. Please don’t open any more Tenderapp tickets on these: I am painfully aware of them and am currently trying to devise workarounds, and the more tickets get opened the more time I spend redirecting people instead of actually working on fixes.

            The first one is that the hack we use to relax JavaScript syntax to get Github working (somewhat) is now causing the browser to go into an infinite error loop on Github issue reports and certain other Github pages, presumably due to changes in code on their end. Unfortunately we use Github heavily for the wiki and issues tracker, so this is a major problem. The temporary workaround is, of course, a hack to relax JavaScript syntax even further. This hack is disgusting and breaks a lot of tests but is simple and does seem to work, so if I can’t come up with something better it will be in FPR17. Most regular users won’t be affected by this.

      • Linux Foundation

        • IOTA rises 10% on Dell and Linux partnerships

          The IOTA cryptocurrency rose nearly 10 percent yesterday, following the news that the Internet of Things (IoT) protocol will be teaming up with computing giant Dell and the open-source focused Linux Foundation on a new project to improve the trustworthiness of data.

          The new project, called Alvarium (Latin for “beehive”), is aimed at creating intrinsic trust across exceedingly diverse systems. By using blockchain technology (specifically, a distributed acrylic graph) and a data rating system—known as Data Confidence Fabrics—the project aims to provide a way of ensuring that certain data, once generated from a variety of sources, is known to be accurate.

        • Linux Taps IOTA to Create New Level of Trust in Data

          The Linux Foundation is tapping tech from the IOTA Foundation to launch a project designed to increase trust and confidence in data transferred across various systems.

          Billed as “Project Alvarium,” the venture also plans to utilize code from Dell Technologies, according to a Linux Foundation press release.

        • IOTA, Linux and Dell collaborate for crypto data security

          Crypto data security has never been a major concern, but in the recent past, risks of 51 percent attacks have been increasing and thus the need to make data secure, crypto, or otherwise.

          Just today, American multinational technology company Dell Technologies Inc., the heart of open-source Unix-like operating systems Linux Foundation and the German distributed ledger technology (DLT) provider IOTA announced an initiative dubbed the Project Alvarium aiming to rate data based on the level of its reliability.

        • IOTA partners with Dell and Linux for data trustworthiness ratings

          Data trustworthiness is one of the biggest challenges that the technology sector faces in the coming decade. As more people get connected to the internet with more devices, as the Internet of Things gets into everyone’s lives, the amount of data being collected is exponentially increasing. In this world, making sure we can trust this data becomes increasingly important. 

          Linux Foundation announced Project Alvarium, in partnership with industry leaders like Dell, IOTA Foundation, Arm, IBM, MobiledgeX, OSIsoft, Unisys and more. The aim of this project will be to build a Data Confidence Fabric or DCF. This will enable measuring the trustworthiness of data collected from various sources. DCF is also called ‘trust fabric’. It will be embedded in the path of data collection which will facilitate the delivery of trusted data from devices to the applications.

      • Productivity Software/LibreOffice/Calligra

        • Redaction Feature in LibreOffice – Phase 1: Manual Redaction

          Redaction in its sanitization sense is the blacking out or deletion of text in a document, or the result of such an effort. It is intended to allow the selective disclosure of information in a document while keeping other parts of the document secret. Typically the result is a document that is suitable for publication or for dissemination to others than the intended audience of the original document. For example, when a document is subpoenaed in a court case, information not specifically relevant to the case at hand is often redacted. Redaction in Wikipedia

          Although there are some proprietary software applications in the market for this purpose, they have their own limitations like lack of support for open/libre document formats. Thanks to LibreOffice’s great support for various file formats, and our recent work on implementing this new feature on top of it, it is now possible to redact most of your documents without leaving the comfort of your favourite office suite.

      • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

        • IDAD 2019: Thank you for defending the right to read!

          Now that the dust has settled and we have made our voices heard, we would like to give a sincere thanks to everyone who helped to make the International Day Against DRM (IDAD) 2019 possible. This is the thirteenth year that we have come together to voice our dissent against the unjust power of Digital Restrictions Management (DRM), and we could not have done it without the help of digital rights activists from all over the world.

          In our continued fight against DRM, we make it clear that we reject a world in which learning is shackled behind draconian restrictions. On IDAD 2019, we used our strength in numbers to tell Pearson that restricting access to textbooks is antithetical to the human right to education. Here in Boston, we protested outside the Pearson building, and spoke with a wide range of students and shoppers about the importance of their digital rights. Demonstrating our own commitment to a culture based on sharing rather than exclusion, we also worked in the FSF office, and remotely with collaborators from around the world, to make contributions to ethical and DRM-free educational materials.

        • GNU Spotlight with Mike Gerwitz: 11 new GNU releases in October!

          artanis-0.4
          aspell-0.60.8
          binutils-2.33.1
          gdb-9.1
          libmicrohttpd-0.9.68
          libredwg-0.9
          nano-4.5
          parallel-20191022
          parted-3.3
          screen-4.7.0
          src-highlite-3.1.8

      • Unix

        • Unix Tell All Book From Kernighan Hits The Shelves

          When you think of the Unix and C revolution that grew out of Bell Labs, there are a few famous names. Dennis Ritchie, Ken Thompson, and Brian Kernighan come to mind. After all, the K in both K&R C and in AWK stand for Kernighan. While Kernighan is no stranger to book authorship — he’s written several classics including “the white book” for C and Unix — he has a new book out that is part historical record and part memoir about the birth of Unix.

          Usually, when a famous person writes a retrospective like this, it is full of salacious details, but we don’t expect much of that here. The book talks about Bell Labs and Multics, of course. There’s serious coverage of the first, sixth, and seventh editions with biographies of people integral to those releases.

          The final part of the book deals with the explosive growth and commercialization of the operating system along with its many descendants. Yes, Linux is in there, of course, as is BSD and others. In broad strokes, this probably doesn’t add a lot to what we all know about the history of Unix, but the personal details and just hearing it from a primary source is worth the price of admission.

        • Dominello reveals how NSW counselled Canberra on tech

          Dominello offers that the journey to get to the digital licence involved straddling a pile of back-end legacy. It included the former Roads and Traffic Authority’s mainframe-based “Drives” architecture that sported a customised blend of Solaris, Unix, Oracle and Java.

      • Programming/Development

        • Five new-ish Python things – Part 1

          I keep gathering links of interesting Python things I’ve seen around the internet: new packages, good tutorials, and so on – and so I thought I’d start a series where I share them every so often.

          Not all of these are new new – some have been around for a while but are new to me – and so they might be new to you too!

          Also, there is a distinct ‘PyData’ flavour to these things – they’re all things I’ve come across in my work in data science and geographic processing with Python.

        • Coroutines in Python

          Every programmer is acquainted with functions – sequences of instructions grouped together as a single unit in order to perform predetermined tasks. They admit a single entry point, are capable of accepting arguments, may or may not have a return value, and can be called at any moment during a program’s execution – including by other functions and themselves.

          When a program calls a function its current execution context is saved before passing control over to the function and resuming execution. The function then creates a new context – from there on out newly created data exists exclusively during the functions runtime.

          As soon as the task is complete, control is transferred back to the caller – the new context is effectively deleted and replaced by the previous one.

        • Excellent Free Books to Learn Bash

          Bash (acronym for the ‘Bourne-Again-SHell’) is the GNU Project’s shell and programming language. It’s an sh-compatible shell that incorporates useful features from the Korn shell (ksh) and C shell (csh). Bash has become a de facto standard for shell scripting. It runs on almost all versions of Unix and a few other operating systems including Windows platforms.

          A Unix shell is both a command interpreter and a programming language. As a command interpreter, the shell provides the user interface to various utilities. The programming language features of Bash allow these utilities to be combined. Files containing commands can be developed, and become commands themselves. A shell script is therefore a quick way of prototyping a complex application. Shell scripting follows the classic Unix philosophy of breaking complex projects into simpler subtasks, of chaining together components and utilities.

          Like all Unix shells, Bash supports filename globbing (wildcard matching), piping, here documents, command substitution, variables and control structures for condition-testing and iteration. The keywords, syntax and other basic features of the language were all copied from sh.

        • Uncovering hidden Perls for Command Line Heroes

          Diving for Perl presented a unique challenge for us: how do we depict a language that was once one of the most popular in programming, without then implying it’s unwanted or in ruins? We wanted to tell Perl’s story while also staying true to its current status—a powerful language with an active community.

        • The Rust Programming Language Blog: A call for blogs 2020

          We are accepting ideas about almost anything having to do with Rust: language features, tooling needs, community programs, ecosystem needs… if it’s related to Rust, we want to hear about it.

        • 5 reasons why I love Python

          I have been using Python since it was a little-known language in 1998. It was a time when Perl was quite popular in the open source world, but I believed in Python from the moment I found it. My parents like to remind me that I used to say things like, “Python is going to be a big deal” and “I’ll be able to find a job using it one day.” It took a while, but my predictions came true.

          There is so much to love about the language. Here are my top 5 reasons why I continue to love Python so much (in reverse order, to build anticipation).

        • Python 3.5.8

          Python 3.5 has now entered “security fixes only” mode, and as such the only changes since Python 3.5.4 are security fixes. Also, Python 3.5.8 has only been released in source code form; no more official binary installers will be produced.

        • Python 3.5.8 is now available

          Python 3.5.8 is now available.

        • Building Quantum Computing Algorithms In Python – Episode 235

          Quantum computers are the biggest jump forward in processing power that the industry has seen in decades. As part of this revolution it is necessary to change our approach to algorithm design. D-Wave is one of the companies who are pushing the boundaries in quantum processing and they have created a Python SDK for experimenting with quantum algorithms. In this episode Alexander Condello explains what is involved in designing and implementing these algorithms, how the Ocean SDK helps you in that endeavor, and what types of problems are well suited to this approach.

        • Python Type Checking

          In this course, you’ll learn about Python type checking. Traditionally, types have been handled by the Python interpreter in a flexible but implicit way. Recent versions of Python allow you to specify explicit type hints that can be used by different tools to help you develop your code more efficiently.

        • PyCoder’s Weekly: Issue #392 (Oct. 29, 2019)
        • Colaboratory + Drive + Github -> the workflow made simpler
        • New project: Nice Telescope Planner

          And now, for something different, I have just dived into Java. I am sharing with you the first (pre-)release of Nice Telescope Planner, a simple cross-platform desktop utility for amateur astronomy hobbyists, written in Java. The aim is to provide an easy to use tool to help planning sky observation sessions, suggesting some of the interesting objects you may be able to watch at naked eye, or using amateur equipment (binoculars or small to medium size telescopes) in a given date/time and place.

  • Leftovers

    • Hardware

      • Pete Zaitcev: Samsung shutting down CPU development in Austin

        An acquaintance of mine was laid off from Samsung. He was a rank-and-file ASIC designer and worked on FPU unit for Samsung’s new CPU. Another acquaintance, a project manager in the silicon field, relayed that supposedly ARM developed a new CPUs that are so great, that all competitors gave up and folded their CPU development, resulting in the layoffs. The online sources have details.

      • [Older] Layoff Rumors Swirl at Samsung Semiconductor R&D Center

        The Samsung R&D Center in Austin, Texas (SARC) was founded in 2010 to develop CPUs and system IP, including interconnects and memory controllers. Development for Samsung’s custom CPU core is reportedly handled here, which would make sense — Samsung’s CPU dev team has at least a few ex-AMD employees on it, and Austin has been a major hub for AMD for decades. According to rumors, however, SARC has just been hit by major layoffs.

        The scope of these layoffs is currently unclear. Some sources have said that a single project was canceled, while others have implied a larger number of employee firings. Like Apple and Huawei, Samsung has invested in building its own custom CPU cores based on its own version of the ARMv8 architecture rather than solely licensing cores from ARM itself. Samsung, however, has struggled to compete in this space.

    • Health/Nutrition

      • On Vaping and Lung Disease

        A front-page story by Matt Richtel in the New York Times October 21 contains some useful info about the increasing incidence of lung damage caused by vaping, but gets the history wrong. And then gets it right. An editor should have caught the contradiction.

    • Security (Confidentiality/Integrity/Availabilitiy)

      • 3 quick ways to reduce your attack surface on Linux
      • DNS Hijacking: How to Diagnose a DNS Hijack and Stop It

        DNS hijacking sounds scary, but understanding the risks and installing a VPN are effective countermeasures to ensure your security online. In today’s guide, we’ll teach you everything you need to know about DNS hijacking attacks, and how to fix the problem if it arises.

      • Security updates for Tuesday

        Security updates have been issued by Debian (php7.0, php7.3, ruby-loofah, and spip), Fedora (proftpd), openSUSE (lz4 and sysstat), Red Hat (chromium-browser, jss, kernel, kernel-alt, kpatch-patch, pango, polkit, sudo, systemd, and thunderbird), SUSE (graphite-web, python3, and samba), and Ubuntu (php5, php7.0, php7.2, php7.3, and samba).

      • PHP RCE flaw actively exploited to pop NGINX servers

        A recently patched vulnerability (CVE-2019-11043) in PHP is being actively exploited by attackers to compromise NGINX web servers, threat intelligence firm Bad Packets has confirmed.

      • How a months-old AMD microcode bug destroyed my weekend

        This weekend, I was excited to deploy my first Ryzen 3000-powered workstation in my home office. Unfortunately, a microcode bug—originally discovered in July but still floating around in large numbers in the wild—wrecked my good time. I eventually got my Ryzen 3700X system working, and it’s definitely fast. But unfortunately, it’s still bugged, and there’s no easy way to fix it.

      • Intel’s security problems are not going away

        Chipzilla’s security problems are not going away, Linux kernel maintainer, Greg Kroah-Hartman has warned.

        Speaking to the assembled throngs at the Open Source Summit Europe Kroah-Hartman said Intel CPU’s security problems “are going to be with us for a very long time” and are “not going away”.

        He added: “They’re all CPU bugs, in some ways they’re all the same problem” but each has to be solved in its own way. “MDS, RDDL, Fallout, Zombieland: They’re all variants of the same basic problem.”

        Kroah-Hartman said that all the CPU bugs were potentially deadly for your security. RIDL and Zombieload, for example, can steal data across applications, virtual machines, even secure enclaves.

    • Defence/Aggression

    • Transparency/Investigative Reporting

    • Environment

    • Finance

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • Won’t You Please Come to Chicago/For the Help That We Can Bring

        If you missed the glad spectacle of thousands of baseball fans booing and chanting “Lock Him Up” to our Unindicted Co-conspirator, take heart: The chants and their spirit of resistance trailed him to Chicago, where he met with police chiefs, slammed the sanctuary city as scarier than Afghanistan, and called the chief who snubbed him “a disgrace.”

      • Poll Sponsored by Anti-Communists Discovers 70% of US Millennials Ready to Ditch Capitalism for Socialism

        Critics blame poll results on ‘historical amnesia,’ while progressive observers say millennials associate socialism with strong social welfare systems

      • ‘Look at My Record, Child,’ Biden Tells Adult Climate Campaigner in Condescending Response to Super PAC Question

        “Biden needs to wrestle seriously with young people demanding real leadership,” says Sunrise Movement co-founder, “and stop dismissing young women asking him legitimate questions as children.”

      • US President Greeted With Thunderous Boos and ‘Impeach Trump’ Banner at World Series

        “After years of horrifying footage of people wildly cheering Trump’s deranged rambling at his rallies, it’s reassuring—restorative, even!—to know that the rest of the country hasn’t forgotten how to greet tyrants.”

      • The Art of the Backpedal

        It is a hallmark of right-wing populists to make a preposterous policy and then be forced — by opposition, by circumstance, by the laws of physics — to retreat.

      • Who Deserves to Be Called a Progressive?

        It’s no secret that Democrats today like to call themselves progressive. Even Joe Biden, among the most conservative candidates in the 2020 primary, has claimed, without a trace of irony, that he owns “the most progressive record of anybody running.” Since 2016, the term has only gained currency; after all, who wants to be seen as an impediment to progress? Yet Biden’s idea of what constitutes progress bears little relation to the ideas of Sens. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., and Bernie Sanders, I-Vt.

      • White House Official Defies Impeachment Subpoena, Deepening Standoff

        A former national security official defied a House subpoena Monday, escalating a standoff between Congress and the White House over who will testify in the impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump.

      • Russian Interference! Oh My!

        Let’s get this out of the way first, the USA interferes in elections around the world, we all know that. Not just with some fb posts but with crippling sanctions and blockades, support of rebellious insurgency groups, all out war and of course social media manipulations.

      • Forget Russia, The Real Threat to Democracy Are Corporate Assets Like Clinton and Trump

        Hillary Clinton recently made headlines around the globe with her strong insinuation that current Democratic presidential nominee Tulsi Gabbard was a “Russian Asset” during an interview. She declared “I’m not making any predictions, but I think they’ve got their eye on somebody who is currently in the Democratic primary and are grooming her to be the third-party candidate.

      • The Time is Now to Vote Green

        A vote for the Green Party is a vote for urgent action on climate chaos, a vote for a fairer Britain and a call for a final say on Europe with a People’s Vote.

        We need a fairer society and a liveable planet. That can only happen through bold action to cut carbon emissions and protect the environment. This action starts at the ballot box.

        This year the Green Party won record gains in council elections, grew its presence in Parliament and went over 50,000 members. We got two million votes in the European elections. That’s two million demands to tackle the climate emergency.

        Our climate action is unparalleled. Caroline Lucas MP co-founded the Green New Deal. This empowers communities to be sustainable, supplying investment to achieve net zero carbon by 2030, creating jobs and homes and vastly improved public transport. Meanwhile, Parliamentary Candidate Carla Denyer first put forward the idea of a local area declaring a climate emergency, a call joined by over 270 local authorities to date.

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • Russian journalist charged with ‘insulting the government’ for a single sentence posted on Telegram

        On October 21, journalist and political scientist Fyodor Krasheninnikov found out that he was facing administrative charges for insulting the government. For what appears to be the first time in the history of Russia’s 2019 law against offensive anti-government statements published online, the charges against Krasheninnikov stemmed from a post on the social site Telegram. Telegram is officially banned in the Russian Federation, but it is widely used nonetheless.

      • Putin orders criminalization of online ‘drug propaganda’ in Russia

        Russian President Vladimir Putin has ordered the country’s federal executive branch to develop new legislation that would criminalize “encouraging the use of or propagandizing narcotic substances, psychotropic substances, or their analogues using the information and telecommunication network known as the Internet.” Encouraging illegal drug use in Russia is currently an administrative violation punishable by a small fine, and there has not previously been a specific punishment for committing that violation online.

      • Bus Company Threatens To Sue College Newspaper Over Satirical Story

        What is it with college bus companies? For years we’ve covered the insanity of Suburban Express and its attacks on customers for criticizing the company, and now we have a story that impacts my own alma mater. Coach USA is a large bus holding company that runs a bunch of different bus companies, including ShortLine, which runs regular coach bus service between downstate New York and upstate New York, making it a popular option for students from the New York City metropolitan region going to college at Binghamton, Ithaca, Cornell, Albany or Elmira. It’s been around for quite some time — and like many college bus transportation services, the subject of jokes.

    • Privacy/Surveillance

    • Civil Rights/Policing

    • Monopolies

      • Patents and Software Patents

        • Price Setter LLC Falsely Claims Online Ad Invention, Demands Money from Android Devs

          Unfortunately, app developers are facing another onslaught of letters demanding money they shouldn’t have to pay.  This time, the sender is Jorge Maass, a patent owner who also runs a real-estate business in Texas. In recent months, Maass has been sending out threatening letters under the name of his company, Price Setter, LLC. The letters tell developers that the apps they built infringe his patent—and they owe him money—just for using standard software to display online ads. 

          The Price Setter letters, titled “Notice of Potential Infringement” [PDF] or the more threatening “Final Notice of Potential Infringement,” [PDF] demand that developers pay an annual license fee ranging from $400 to $2,000, depending on the number of times the app is downloaded.

      • Copyrights

        • Senators Wyden And Paul Put A Hold On Dangerous CASE Act; Will Propose Alternative

          Last week we noted that the House (overwhelmingly) voted in favor of the CASE Act, which is presented as a “small claims court” for copyright issues, but which has significant Constitutional issues, and would almost certainly lead to an uptick in copyright trolling activity. As we noted, the bill still needed to go to the Senate, and it appears that this is (at least for now) being blocked by Senators Ron Wyden and Rand Paul who have put a hold on the bill, and will introduce an alternative approach.

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    IRC logs for Monday, April 06, 2020



  4. Software Patents Remain Junk Patents in the United States (Not Enforceable), Whereas the EPO Keeps Granting Them and Promoting Them

    We take note of the positive outcomes in the US, where courts continue to reject software patents, but in Europe the largest patent office, which sought to replace all the courts, still acts as if patent law does not exist and patents can be endlessly printed irrespective of their merit (or validity as judged by actual courts)



  5. The Fall of the UPC - Part XIII: A Death Worth Celebrating and Many Lies Worth Debunking

    We take stock of positive responses to the decision made by the German constitutional court (FCC) 2.5 weeks ago; we also explain why it has taken so long to piece together firm-by-firm scoresheet for UPC lies



  6. GitHub is Moving the Free Software Movement Into “Check”

    GitHub's growing levels of control over Free software projects (GitHub itself is proprietary and Microsoft-controlled) ought to alarm the community; it's a lot worse than most people care to acknowledge, based on weeks of detailed analysis of GNU/Linux distros



  7. Links 6/4/2020: New Red Hat CEO, elementary OS Hera Updates

    Links for the day



  8. When the Decision is OK and the Judge's Motivations Are Also OK

    Justice Huber made the right call; but the bullies and charlatans who conspired to undermine laws and constitutions will never be satisfied



  9. The Fall of the UPC - Part XII: Doing the Unthinkable by Blaming the Judge's (Justice's) Wife?

    Team UPC and its media partners never cease to amaze us; anybody who stands in their way is either portrayed as a Russian stooge or too ignorant to be worth talking to



  10. The Fall of the UPC - Part XI: Lies Told by Bundesverband der Deutschen Industrie (BDI) in Süddeutsche Zeitung

    Today we look at misleading claims (or lies) published by Süddeutsche Zeitung after the Germans' constitutional court (FCC) had pointed out the obvious, namely that UPC ratification would be in violation of the German constitution



  11. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, April 05, 2020

    IRC logs for Sunday, April 05, 2020



  12. Links 5/4/2020: MindSpore, Covid-19 Projects and More

    Links for the day



  13. EPO is Just Like Some Cruel Political Party and Not a Patent Office

    The "cabal" which runs today's EPO (even the word "Mafia" seems suitable here) isn't acting -- not even remotely -- like a patent office; it's a patent-printing operation ("protection money" as income) that uses shallow political stunts to manufacture consent with the EU's 'generous' assistance



  14. Digitalisation and Digital Technologies as a Ploy to Justify Illegal Software Patents

    Say "hello" to the next weasel word/s; from the "hey hi" hype wave we've now moved to something "digital" (which can mean just about anything, including algorithms of all sorts)



  15. The Fall of the UPC - Part X: How We Shall Catalogue UPC Lies

    The cult that Team UPC became (one member lying to another member, maintaining a false version of reality) will be judged based on underlying facts, not lying about facts; we start with a token of contempt for IP Kat and Bristows LLP (there are overlaps)



  16. IRC Proceedings: Saturday, April 04, 2020

    IRC logs for Saturday, April 04, 2020



  17. Major Revelation: Microsoft Blackmail Against LAMP (GNU/Linux and Free Stacks for Servers) Goes At Least 16 Years Back, Predating the Novell Patent Deal

    (Techno-)Anthropological analyses of Microsoft's patent war on Free/libre software must take into account what Microsoft did to MySQL, a Swedish company at the time



  18. Links 4/4/2020: Sparky 5.11, Firefox 74.0.1, POCL 1.5

    Links for the day



  19. IRC Proceedings: Friday, April 03, 2020

    IRC logs for Friday, April 03, 2020



  20. Links 3/4/2020: Ubuntu Beta, GNOME 3.36.1, ExTiX LXQt Mini, NetBSD 8.2 Released

    Links for the day



  21. Digital Communication, Digitalisation and Videogaming Among the EPO's Latest Smokescreens for Illegal and Abstract Patents on Algorithms

    The EPO keeps liaising with the EU to promote patents which EU officials have themselves said were illegal; to make matters worse, the EPO's violations of its own laws inspire the United States to do the same



  22. Emotional Blackmail for Illegal Software Patents

    Semantic tactics the European Patent Office (EPO) uses to promote software patents in Europe and may theoretically use in the future (satire)



  23. Clear Linux is to GNU/Linux What Clearly Defined is to Open Source

    The idea that we need Intel to take GNU/Linux ‘mainstream’ is ludicrous; as OSDL co-founder (now succeeded in the flesh of the Corporate Linux Foundation), Intel is more about Linux (with DRM, “secure boot” and everything that lets it be remotely controlled) than about GNU and it’s not too keen on GPL (copyleft), either



  24. IRC Proceedings: Thursday, April 02, 2020

    IRC logs for Thursday, April 02, 2020



  25. Links 2/4/2020: Linux 5.6.2, Qt Creator 4.11.2, LineageOS ROM Based on Android 10

    Links for the day



  26. OIN in 2020 Resembles Linux Foundation in 2020 (Corporate Front Group Piggybacking the Linux Brand)

    We regret to say that the Open Invention Network seems not to care at all about Software Freedom; to make matters worse, it is a proponent of software patents and a voice for companies like IBM and Microsoft, not the "Community" it fancies misrepresenting



  27. Inside the Free Software Foundation (FSF) - Part IX: Semi-Happy Ending

    Richard Stallman is here to stay and the FSF will let him stay (as chief of GNU); we want to close the series on a positive note



  28. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, April 01, 2020

    IRC logs for Wednesday, April 01, 2020



  29. Upcoming Articles and Research Areas

    Although we've failed to write as much as usual, we're still preparing some in-depth articles and maintaining Daily Links (in spite of unforeseen ordeals like a forced laptop migration)



  30. Links 2/4/2020: ProtonMail Bridge for Linux, GTK 3.98.2 and Red Hat DNF 4.2.21

    Links for the day


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