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11.22.19

Links 22/11/2019: Mesa 19.2.6, webOS OSE 2.1.0

Posted in News Roundup at 3:53 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Why You Should Be Using Linux

      How many times have you been happily working away when, out of nowhere, Windows either forced a reboot to update, stopped responding, or completely crashed? With Linux, those events are a thing of the past. Because of the way Linux was designed, you (the user) have complete control over nearly everything.

      Say, for example, an application fails on you. Instead of that application taking the entire desktop along for the ride (an issue that often stumps even software development providers), you can log into what’s called a virtual console and force that crashed application closed via the command line. Yes, that does take a bit more skill than the average user possesses, but once you know how it’s done, it becomes second nature.

      The likelihood of that actually happening, however, is low. The few instances where this has happened to me was due to my using beta or “nightly” releases of software, which the average user wouldn’t be working with.

      Linux simply works and works with an almost unheard of reliability.

    • Server

      • Kubernetes and the misconception of multi-cloud portability
      • IBM

        • Cloud-native integration with Kubernetes and Camel K

          Our first DevNation Live regional event was held in Bengaluru, India in July. This free technology event focused on open source innovations, with sessions presented by elite Red Hat technologists.

          In this session, Kamesh Sampath shows how to apply common Enterprise Integration Patterns (EIP) with Apache Camel, Kubernetes, and Red Hat OpenShift. You will see how the new Camel K framework helps in deploying Camel DSL code as “integrations” in Kubernetes/OpenShift.

        • Artificial Intelligence Apps with TensorFlow and Joget on OpenShift

          Containers and Kubernetes are key to accelerating the ML lifecycle as these technologies provide data scientists the much needed agility, flexibility, portability, and scalability to train, test, and deploy ML models.

          Red Hat OpenShift is the industry’s leading containers and Kubernetes hybrid cloud platform. It provides all the above benefits, and through the integrated DevOps capabilities and integration with hardware accelerators, OpenShift enables better collaboration between data scientists and software developers. This helps accelerate the roll out of intelligent applications across hybrid cloud (data center, edge, and public clouds).

          Joget is an open source no-code/low-code application platform that empowers non-coders to visually build and maintain apps anytime, anywhere. By accelerating and democratizing app development, Joget is a natural fit for modern Kubernetes Hybrid Cloud platforms like Red Hat OpenShift.

        • Break down support system silos with agile integration and modernize telco customer and network operations

          When any systems – including communications service provider (CSP) operations support systems (OSS) and business support systems (BSS) – are delivered with a narrow, siloed purpose, they tend to be pretty inflexible. As CSPs look to transform their businesses for success in increasingly competitive and dynamic markets, this inflexibility can stall their modernization efforts.

          Service providers rely on OSS/BSS to support their services. But for many providers, their OSS/BSS generally lack interoperability. This can limit the exchange of data and access to metrics needed to synthesize more holistic views and address complex problems among the disparate systems. Bottom line: without close integration between OSS and BSS, CSPs may struggle to become digital service providers.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • Ubuntu Podcast from the UK LoCo: S12E33 – The Sentinel

        This week we’ve been to the Linux Application Summit in Barcelona. We round up news from the Ubuntu and desktop Linux community and bring you our picks from the wider tech news.

        It’s Season 12 Episode 33 of the Ubuntu Podcast! Alan Pope, Mark Johnson and Martin Wimpress are connected and speaking to your brain.

    • Kernel Space

      • systemd 244-RC1 Released With Many Changes

        It looks like a big new systemd release will be out in time for Christmas.

        The first release candidate of systemd 244 was made available today for testing. Systemd 244-RC1 has also already been uploaded to the likes of Fedora Rawhide for further vetting.

      • Linux 5.5 To Finally Expose NVMe Drive Temperatures Via HWMON

        Linux for years has supported monitoring NVMe drive temperatures when installing the nvme user-space utility and run as root, etc. But now finally with Linux 5.5 the kernel is supporting NVMe drive temperature reporting through the hardware monitoring “HWMON” infrastructure alongside other hardware sensors.

        Come the Linux 5.5 stable release in early 2020 is the NVMe HWMON support to allow reporting the current NVMe drive temperature sensor(s) and min/max thresholds via this kernel infrastructure. This in turn allows user-space to simply query the data over sysfs without the need for any utilities, no root requirement, and should gracefully work with the various programs that report HWMON sensor readings to Linux desktop users.

      • Graphics Stack

        • Nvidia Outs New Linux/BSD Graphics Driver with GeForce GTX 1650 SUPER Support

          For Linux- and BSD-based platforms, the Nvidia 440.36 proprietary graphics driver is here to add support for the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650 SUPER graphics card, which Nvidia claims it’s up to 50 percent faster than the original GTX 1650 and up to 2X faster than the previous-generation GTX 1050.

          Now BSD and Linux gamers who bought an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650 SUPER GPU can use it to play games at full performance if they install the Nvidia 440.36 proprietary graphics driver, which is available to download only for 64-bit operating systems from Nvidia.com or via our free software portal here and here.

        • NVIDIA 440.36 Linux Driver Released With Official GTX 1650 SUPER Support

          Building off the NVIDIA 440 stable Linux driver release from earlier this month, the NVIDIA 440.36 Linux driver is out today as a small update.

          The principle update with the NVIDIA 440.36 driver and warranting this Friday release is officially supporting the GeForce GTX 1650 SUPER graphics card. The NVIDIA Linux driver has already unofficially supported this new budget Turing GPU but only recognized it as a “Device” but now the strings are in place so the GeForce GTX 1650 SUPER is officially supported.

        • Mesa 19.2.6
          Hi list,
          
          I'm releasing a new mesa 19.2.x release to address being unable to compile on
          PPC due to a bad backport. There are a couple of additional patches in here
          because I didn't want to tease them apart and they're all stable anyway.
          
          Dylan
          
          Shortlog
          ========
          
          Alejandro Piñeiro (1):
                v3d: adds an extra MOV for any sig.ld*
          
          Dave Airlie (1):
                llvmpipe/ppc: fix if/ifdef confusion in backport.
          
          Dylan Baker (4):
                docs/relnotes/19.2.5: Add SHA256 sum
                meson: generate .pc files for gles and gles2 with old glvnd
                docs: Add release notes for 19.2.6
                VERSION: bumpre to 19.2.6
          
          Eric Engestrom (1):
                vulkan: delete typo'd header
          
          Hyunjun Ko (1):
                freedreno/ir3: fix printing output registers of FS.
          
          Jose Maria Casanova Crespo (1):
                v3d: Fix predication with atomic image operations
          
          Yevhenii Kolesnikov (1):
                glsl: Enable textureSize for samplerExternalOES
          
          
          
          git tag: mesa-19.2.6
          
        • Mesa 19.2.6 Released Due To POWER Fallout

          Mesa 19.2.5 was just released earlier this week but now v19.2.6 has already been released due to the previous point release breaking IBM POWER builds.

          Mesa 19.2.5 brought support on PowerPC 64-bit in LLVMpipe for using LLVM’s large code model for JIT-compiled shaders since for large processes like GNOME Shell and Firefox there could be address space issues with the medium/small code models. Using that larger code model doesn’t bring any measurable hit to the LLVMpipe performance but the commit introduced some problems when it was back-ported to the Mesa 19.2 series.

    • Benchmarks

      • TURNIP Mesa Vulkan Driver Lands Performance/Power-Helping UBWC Support

        Universal Bandwidth Compression is now enabled for the open-source “TURNIP” Mesa Vulkan driver.

        TURNIP is the open-source Vulkan driver being written around Qualcomm Adreno hardware as part of the “Freedreno” umbrella. With the Freedreno Gallium3D driver in good shape already for OpenGL support across multiple generations of Adreno graphics processors, TURNIP is of growing work by the developers involved — primarily from Google — in advancing this Vulkan driver support.

      • PHP 5.3 To PHP 7.4 Performance Benchmarks On AMD EPYC

        With the big PHP 7.4.0 release due out next week, yesterday we published our PHP 7.4.0 benchmarks using the near-final build for this annual update to PHP. Those benchmarks compared previous releases as far back as PHP 5.6. But out of curiosity after that article I went to do some benchmarks going back to PHP 5.3 through PHP 7.4 and PHP 8.0-dev.

        With the AMD EPYC 7642 server running Ubuntu 19.10 used in yesterday’s article, I ran the final PHP 5.3/5.4/5.5 benchmarks added in to yesterday’s data. So for those curious how the historical PHP5 performance compares to the imminent PHP 7.4, these benchmarks are for your enjoyment today.

    • Applications

      • Audacity 2.3.3 Open-Source Audio Editor Released with Better AAC/M4A Exports

        Audacity 2.3.3 is mostly a bug fix release that addresses multiple issues reported by users from previous versions, but it also brings some improvements, such as a new quality setting for AAC/M4A exports, the ability to skip leading silence (blank space) in exports, as well as “What you hear is what you get” for exports.

        This release also splits the equalization effect into two effects, namely Filter Curve and Graphic EQ, which supports presets using the Manage button and two points at same frequency for steep steps. Furthermore, Audacity 2.3.3 removes some functionality that confused users, such as Nyquist Workbench, Vocal Remover, On-Demand aliased files, and “Normalize on Load.”

    • Instructionals/Technical

    • Wine or Emulation

      • Wine Patches Coming To Allow UMIP Emulation – Works Around Issues For Ryzen 3000

        Coming up this weekend with the Linux 5.4 kernel is emulation/spoofing of the SGDT/SIDT/SMSW instructions around UMIP for allowing newer 64-bit Windows games to run on Wine and Steam Play (Proton). With newer CPUs like the AMD Ryzen 3000 series that support UMIP, these instructions are not allowed to run in user-space with Wine due to UMIP. So while the first stable kernel release is about to land with this support, some Wine-based emulation not contingent on the kernel patches is also in the works.

    • Games

      • Valve are making the Index VR kit available in more countries

        If Valve want the new Half-Life: Alyx to be a success, they need to push VR into every possible country they can and they’re working a bit more towards that.

        Announced early this morning (around 1AM UTC), the Valve Index is now being made available in Canada and Japan in addition to the availability in Europe and the USA. Half-Life: Alyx doesn’t require the Index though, Valve did say it will work with any PC VR kit but this will probably give the best experience.

      • Supernatural horror adventure ASYLUM looks creepy as hell in the latest footage

        ASYLUM is an upcoming supernatural horror adventure from developer Senscape, it’s high up on our list to check out when it releases and the latest footage is looking great.

        Released a few days ago is a new short video, with what Senscape say is entirely “100% in-game without any processing”.

      • Dota Underlords adds Duos team creation and ranked play, next major update coming soon

        Dota Underlords is steadily getting better and another update is now out with some interesting new features for playing with a friend in the Duos mode.

        You can now get a persistent team for people you regularly team up with. Once you’ve played three matches with another, it will also unlock the ability for you to actually name your team. You’ll be able to change your team name every three matches. Making it more interesting, it tracks some stats too like number of matches played and your record.

      • Completely bizarre 90′s internet simulator Hypnospace Outlaw adds mod support

        Hypnospace Outlaw could easily win the award for the strangest game of the year, giving you a retro-futuristic look at the internet and now it’s getting bigger.

        No More Robots and Tendershoot just recently gave it modding support, so now you can create pretty much anything in it. Webpages, images, wallpapers, soundscapes, entire zones, fonts, characters, file downloads and a huge amount more. They said it’s now possible for someone to create their own full Hypnospace story.

      • Try out some monster catching in Monster Sanctuary, now with an updated demo

        Currently in Early Access, Monster Sanctuary might not be finished by so far it’s turned out a lot of fun. They’re giving more people a chance to now try it, with an updated demo.

        This demo update comes shortly after a big update to the full game, which included a whole new area to explore with Horizon Beach. A new story arc based around a treasure hunt, eight new monsters to collect (most of which water themed) along with new items and rare equipment. All sounds pretty great. You can also find the Monster Farm, a place to let all your creatures go out into the open and see them, which does look pretty sweet.

      • Some early first impressions of Google Stadia played on Linux

        Stadia has launched if you have the Founder Edition, our unit and code came a little late but it’s here and surprisingly it all seems to be working well.

        This new game streaming service from Google is powered by Debian Linux and the Vulkan API, so I’ve been rather keen to what it has to offer. Keep in mind you will need a good internet connection for it and you do always need to be online, although it’s supposed to keep your place for 15 minutes to help with drop-outs and changing devices.

        Quite a rough start, as they were clearly sending out codes slowly in batches. Something which wasn’t explained properly. However, every Founder should now have access with them moving onto sending codes for those with the Premier Edition next week. I do hope Google learn to communicate better in future.

      • Stadia Issues Continue And It’s The One Thing That Can’t Happen If We’re Going To Give Up Our Consoles

        Karl Bode had a nice write up earlier this week about the ongoing issues with Stadia, Google’s play to get gamers to give up their home consoles and GaaS (Game as a Service). As Karl noted, Stadia faces inherent challenges in these United States, given the laughably substandard broadband resulting from full regulatory capture at the hands of a few telecom players. In addition, Google, with all of its resources, seems fully committed to punishing early adopters with a big price tag for what is essentially a public beta alongside some reports of failed hardware deliveries. So big price tag, maybe you get what you bought in order to use the streaming service, and maybe that streaming service works with your broadband connection. Cool.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • KDE’s Plasma Mobile Now Supports Phone Calls on the PinePhone Linux Smartphone

          As we reported earlier this month, KDE Plasma Mobile is already running well on the PinePhone, but not all things are working properly, such as phone calls, which the Plasma Mobile team reports that they managed to add multiple patches to integrate telephony functions with the graphical UI.

          “Bhushan Shah submitted multiple patches in postmarketOS to integrate telephony functions with user interface. Using which PINE64 Pinephone can connect calls from user interface. Currently audio is a work in progress however, and we hope to have this resolved soon,” said the Plasma Mobile team.

        • KF6 Sprint – Day One

          Today we started our KF6 sprint at the MBition office in Berlin.

          Beside the people attending in person, we have David Faure joining us via web conference.

          Thanks already to the people at MBition that spend time on making it possible to host the sprint there.

          First stuff to be discussed were some high level things, like does the monthly release scheme work out well. Short answer: yes :) The short period works well, allows people to fix issues directly in frameworks and still have that reasonable fast provided to the users. And the overhead of release creation is low, thanks to automation.

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • A Review of GNOME Shell & Mutter 3.34

          The last GNOME release, named “Thessaloniki”, was busy for GNOME Shell and Mutter. Many changes, ranging from code cleanups to architectural changes to performance improvements to new features landed.

          Let’s take a look at the major highlights for the GNOME 3.34 release.

    • Distributions

      • Zorin OS 15 Lite – The Best Replacement For Windows 7

        The distro keeps getting new features in each update but this time the work done in making the XFCE desktop environment look beautiful is really appreciatable.

        Most of my life, I have heard Windows users saying how beautiful Windows 7 is. Now Windows 7 is going to reach its end of life next year, 2020, all users should think about moving to another beautiful and more importantly more secure operating system. Any Linux distribution can fill the gap but if the design and look matters to you, there is no better place to start than Zorin OS 15.

        The best is that all Linux distros are more secure and respect privacy. None of your information is being shared with third-party services while you’re using your computer.

      • Breathe new life into your aging PC with Zorin OS 15 Lite

        Yesterday, Zorin released Zorin OS 15 Lite, the slimmed-down version of its more robust big brother, Zorin OS 15. The latest lite version of the OS is custom-tailored toward older lower spec laptops and PCs.

        The minimal specs are astonishing considering the aesthetically visual appeal of Zorin’s latest release. The minimal requirements are as follows…

      • Porteus Linux: A portable Linux with a difference

        I’m writing this in Porteus Linux v5.0rc1 for x86_64, a Live Linux distribution booted from a USB pendrive. It is fast, good-looking and has a good range of applications and utilities. I stumbled upon Porteus recently while looking for a compact Live Linux distribution to install on a couple of spare SD cards. It seemed ideal, as it is a portable distribution designed for USB pendrives and CDs, and optionally can be configured to be persistent between reboots and shutdowns. Porteus is based on Slackware, although I gather the developers might switch to Arch Linux at some undefined future date. Spins of Porteus with various Desktop Environments are available, and I settled on Xfce after trying a couple of the others.

        Although my original objective was to install a portable Linux distribution on SD cards, I only managed to install Porteus on an SD card by using YUMI Multiboot USB Creator for Windows, which I run using WINE in Linux, rather than in Windows. The reason Porteus boots from an SD card when installed by YUMI is because YUMI installs its own boot manager on the SD card and chainloads the OS. Actually, if an SD card or USB pendrive has sufficient capacity, YUMI can install several OSs on a single SD card or single USB pendrive and you can choose on the YUMI bootloader menu which OS to boot.

        Anyway, Porteus is interesting because, optionally, it can be configured quite easily to be persistent. I.e. if you want it to, Porteus can save new files, applications you install, browser bookmarks, edited configuration files and so on between reboots/shutdowns. However, I was unable to get persistence working with Porteus installed by YUMI on an SD card, but persistence works perfectly when I install Porteus on USB pendrives, which is the medium Porteus is really designed to be installed on.

      • Reviews

        • Cleverly Reimagined Slax Distro Pushes Portable Linux’s Limits

          Slax runs on a wide range of different file systems, including EXT (ext2,ext3,ext4), btrfs, and even FAT and NTFS.

          It took me about one hour to download the must-have computing applications and accessory tools that fit my needs. The installation of each program takes longer than a distro installed to a hard drive. USB drives are much slower than an internal hard drive.

          Once I had all of my needed software up and running, I generally was pleased with how Slax Linux performed.

          Slax is not a perfect Linux platform, at least not yet — but for me its convenience and flexibility outweigh its current shortcomings.

      • SUSE/OpenSUSE

        • openSUSE Tumbleweed – Review of the week 2019/47

          Another week, in which openQA did block some of the snapshots – and some issues it was unfortunately not able to see. Anyway, during the week 2019/47 we have released three snapshot into the wild (1116, 1118 and 1119), containing those changes:

          Mesa 19.2.4: fixes critical rendering issues from earlier Mesa 19.2.3. As this rendering issue did not happen on all graphics adapters, openQA had no chance of spotting it
          Linux kernel 5.3.11
          KDE Plasma 5.17.3
          Subversion 1.13.0
          binutils 2.33.1

        • YaST Team: Highlights of YaST Development Sprints 88 and 89

          A few weeks ago, we wrote about the new ItemSelector widget that is finding its way into YaST user interfaces. It turned out that just a simple on/off status is not enough in some cases, so we had to extend that concept. For example, software modules may have dependencies, and we want to show the difference between one that was explicitly selected by the user and one that was auto-selected because some other software module requires it.

          This kind of shook the foundations of the underlying classes; all of a sudden a bit is no longer just a bit, but it needs to be broken down into even smaller pieces. Well, we cheated; we now use integer values instead. Most of the class hierarchy still only uses 0 and 1, but the new YCustomStatusItemSelector also supports using higher numbers for application-defined purposes.

          For each possible status value, the application defines the name of the icon to be displayed (for graphical UIs like the Qt UI), the text equivalent (for text mode / the NCurses UI), and an optional nextStatus which tells the widget what status to cycle to when the user changes the status of an item with a mouse click or with the keyboard. A value of -1 lets the application handle this.

          So this is not a one-trick-pony that is useful only for that one use case (the software modules), but a generic tool that might find good uses in other places all over YaST as well.

      • Fedora Family

        • Fedora Atomic Host Nearing End Of Life

          Fedora 29 will be End Of Life soon. With it Fedora Atomic Host will have its last incremental release (based on the Fedora 29 stream). Please move to the Fedora CoreOS preview if you can.

          Last year we introduced the plans for Fedora CoreOS including that Fedora CoreOS would be the successor to Fedora Atomic Host and Container Linux (from CoreOS Inc.). As part of that succession plan we decided that Fedora 29 Atomic Host would be the last stream of Fedora Atomic Host to be released.

          Fedora 29 Atomic Host has served us well, but with Fedora 29 End of Life coming soon , so will the last release of Fedora 29 Atomic Host. The next release of Fedora 29 Atomic Host (in the next few weeks) will be the last two-week release. It will contain all of the latest content from Fedora 29. After that release, Fedora 29, and Fedora 29 Atomic Host will no longer receive any updates.

        • PHP version 7.2.25 and 7.3.12

          RPM of PHP version 7.3.12 are available in remi repository for Fedora 30-31 and in remi-php73 repository for Fedora 29 and Enterprise Linux ≥ 6 (RHEL, CentOS).

          RPM of PHP version 7.2.25 are available in remi repository for Fedora 29 and in remi-php72 repository for Enterprise Linux ≥ 6 (RHEL, CentOS).

        • Sharing Fedora

          For example, if you go out to lunch with a group of colleagues periodically, you might find it natural to talk about Fedora with them. If someone shows interest, you can suggest to get together with them for a Fedora show and tell. There isn’t any need for formal presentations or prepared talks. This is just having lunch and sharing information with people you know.

          When you’re with friends, relatives, colleagues, or neighbors, conversation often turns to things computer related, and you can bring up Fedora. There are usually opportunities to point out how Fedora would partially if not completely address their concerns or provide something they want.

          These are people you know so talking with them is easy and natural. You probably know the kind of things they use PCs for, so you know the features of Fedora that will be attractive to them. Such conversations can start anytime you see someone you know. You don’t need to steer conversations toward Fedora — that might be impolite, depending on the situation. But if they bring up computer related issues, you might find an opportunity to talk about Fedora.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • 8th OSM Hackfest: the highlights

          The 8th OSM Hackfest is over, but the OSM (Open Source MANO) project continues to evolve and is now looking forward to landing release SEVEN. It was an exciting week in Lucca, Italy. We’ve seen a lot of interest from those who attended the event for the first time and a strong commitment from the community to drive the project towards new challenges.

          This was also an important week for Canonical as we’ve officially launched our own distribution – Charmed OSM!

          [...]

          By delegating an experienced team of telco experts, Canonical delivered a plenary session about native charms and a presentation about CNF (container network function) workloads deployment with Juju K8s charms, a feature that is expected in OSM release SEVEN. The session about native charms followed with a brief update on a new charm tech framework. The charm tech framework is event-based which makes charming experience much more intuitive. An example of how to migrate from the reactive framework to the new framework was provided too. The charm tech framework is coming with Juju 2.7 release.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Goldman Sachs is planning on giving some of its most valuable software to Wall Street for free

        Goldman Sachs wants to give away some of its most valuable software.

        The investment bank spent countless hours over 14 years developing a platform called Alloy to help it access and analyze the growing set of financial databases being created across the firm. Now Goldman is taking the unusual step of making that program, as well as the language underlying it, available to the rest of Wall Street for free as open-source software in collaboration with a nonprofit called Finos.

        The software and language “have grown to become critical tools within our firm across the trade lifecycle that help us price, assess and evaluate risk, clear transactions, and perform regulatory reporting,” said Neema Raphael, co-chief data officer at Goldman. By making it publicly available, “we’ll unlock tremendous value for the industry when we co-develop and share models.”

      • Web Browsers

        • Chromium

          • Arm Has Been Working To Boost The Chrome/Chromium Browser Performance

            Arm engineers have been working to speed-up the open-source Chromium web browser on 64-bit ARM (AArch64) and ultimately to flow back into Google’s Chrome releases. Their focus has been around Windows-on-Arm with the growing number of Windows Arm laptops coming to market, but the Chromium optimizations also benefit the browser on Linux too.

            Arm has been focusing on Chromium optimizations not only for the Chromium/Chrome browsers itself but also for software leveraging the likes of CEF and Electron that rely upon Chromium code for rendering.

        • Mozilla

          • TenFourFox FPR17b1 available

            TenFourFox Feature Parity Release 17 beta 1 is now available (downloads, hashes, release notes). SourceForge seems to have fixed whatever was making TenFourFox barf on its end which now might actually be an issue over key exchange. For a variety of reasons, but most importantly backwards compatibility, my preference has been to patch up the NSS security library in TenFourFox to support new crypto and ciphers rather than just drop in a later version. We will see if the issue recurs.

            This release fixes the “infinite loop” issue on Github with a trivial “hack” mitigation. This mitigation makes JavaScript slightly faster as a side-effect but it’s because it relaxes some syntax constraints in the runtime, so I don’t consider this a win really. It also gets rid of some debug-specific functions that are web-observable and clashed on a few pages, an error Firefox corrected some time ago but missed my notice. Additionally, since 68ESR newly adds the ability to generate and click on links without embedding them in the DOM, I backported that patch so that we can do that now too (a 4-year-old bug only recently addressed in Firefox 70). Apparently this functionality is required for certain sites’ download features and evidently this was important enough to merit putting in an extended support release, so we will follow suit.

            I also did an update to cookie security, with more to come, and cleared my backlog of some old performance patches I had been meaning to backport. The most important of these substantially reduces the amount of junk strings JavaScript has hanging around, which in turn reduces memory pressure (important on our 32-bit systems) and garbage collection frequency. Another enables a fast path for layout frames with no properties so we don’t have to check the hash tables as frequently.

          • Week notes – 2019 w47 – worklog

            Week Notes. I’m not sure I will be able to commit to this. But they have a bit of revival around my blogging reading echo chamber. Per revival, I mean I see them again.

            The Open Data Institute just started one with a round about them. I subscribed again to the feed of Brian Suda and his own week notes. Alice Bartlett has also a very cool personal, down to earth and simple summary of her week. I love that she calls them weaknotes She’s on week 63 by now.

          • Marco Zehe: My extended advent calendar

            This year, I have a special treat for my readers. On Monday, November 25, at 12 PM UTC, I will start a 30 day series about everything and anything. Could be an accessibility tip, an how-to about using a feature in an app I use frequently, some personal opinion on something, a link to something great I came across on the web… I am totally not certain yet. I have ideas about some things I want to blog about, but by far not 30 of them yet.

      • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

        • Glimpse, the G-Rated GIMP Fork, Issues Its First Release

          But before we go on to look at what’s on offer in this release I need to stress that I am not here to tell you what you should think.

          That said, forks of well known software projects (even super duper popular ones like The GIMP) happen all the time, for a variety of reasons, some of which might seem trivial or pointless to you.

          So regardless of whether the word “GIMP” does have negative connotations in your world or it doesn’t is by the by. With its first release now out of the door, the Glimpse image editor is beginning to stand on its own merits, to pursue its own path, and deserves to be evaluated on that basis.

        • GNU Guile 2.9.5 (beta) released

          We are delighted to announce GNU Guile 2.9.5, the fifth beta release in preparation for the upcoming 3.0 stable series. See the release announcement for full details and a download link.

          Besides the usual set of optimizations, this release adds an –r6rs option for better R6RS support out of the box, and also adds a new –r7rs corresponding to R&RS. Guile’s core exception handling has also been rebased onto the raise-exception and with-exception-handler primitives, enabling better compatibility going forward with structured exception objects, which are more common in the broader Scheme community than Guile’s old throw and catch.

          GNU Guile 2.9.5 is a beta release, and as such offers no API or ABI stability guarantees. Users needing a stable Guile are advised to stay on the stable 2.2 series.

      • Openness/Sharing/Collaboration

        • Open Hardware/Modding

          • Open source transparency comes to root of trust hardware

            Geopolitics have put enterprise data centers in the crosshairs of international espionage. From all corners of the globe, hackers of all sorts, including those aligned with national spy agencies, are zeroing in on hardware roots of trust.

            For any computing platform, the root of trust is the ultimate line of defense against cybersecurity attacks. No matter how secure your operating system and applications appear to be, they are acutely vulnerable if running on a hardware platform whose root of trust has been compromised by an unauthorized party.

      • Programming/Development

        • Python CSV

          A CSV (Comma Separated Values) format is one of the most simple and common ways to store tabular data. To represent a CSV file, it must be saved with the .csv file extension.

        • Python, Javascript, and Web automation

          In the last few months, I’ve been trying to compare the languages that I’ve worked with so far. The reason being, I often find myself in situations when I have a task at hand, and I realize there are multiple different ways to do it in multiple languages, and I get analysis paralysis.

          Anyways, the focus of this post is Python, Javascript, and their use in Web automation. To be fair, both languages have different histories and evolved very differently, but web automation is one area that I feel where both languages have something to offer. I’ll try to compare Python and Javascript in the context of different usage patterns and ways of performing web automation.

        • Higher Performance Python (ODSC 2019)

          Building on PyDataCambridge last week I had the additional pleasure of talking on Higher Performance Python at ODSC 2019 yesterday.

        • Transferring Files Using Python’s Built-in HTTP Server

          The need to transfer files over a network is one that arises often. GNU/Linux systems support multiple protocols and tools for doing so, some of which are designed for somewhat permanent file sharing (such as SMB, AFP, and NFS), while others such as Secure Copy (SCP) are used for quick manual and scripted file transfers. Among these is the HyperText Transfer Protocol (HTTP), the versatile and ubiquitous protocol on which the World Wide Web relies.

          Python, which is included by default in most Linux distributions, provides simple HTTP servers through the “SimpleHTTPServer” and “http.server” modules. The former is found in the Python 2 Standard Library, while the latter is included in Python 3. These lightweight HTTP servers require no separate installation and can be started instantly with a single command.

  • Leftovers

    • Cloud Print becomes the latest product to face Google death squad

      At the end of 2020, after over a decade in beta, Google will pick up its product-ending shotgun and take Cloud Print for a talk behind the back shed, from which it will never return.

      “Beginning January 1, 2021, devices across all operating systems will no longer be able to print using Google Cloud Print,” Google said in a support note.

      “We recommend that over the next year, you identify an alternative solution and execute a migration strategy.”

      Last week for its own Chrome OS operating system, Google added CUPS printing, which it will use instead of Cloud Print.

    • Google shuts down its Cloud Print service after 10-year Beta

      Google revealed plans to shut down Cloud Print, a cloud-based printing solution, at the end of 2020 permanently.

      The company launched Cloud Print back in 2010 as a solution to print from any Internet connected device to compatible printers. The main benefit of the solution was that users did not have to install printer drivers on their client devices and that devices did not need to be in the same local network as the printer. The solution enabled printing on devices without official support from the printer’s manufacturer or drivers for that particular device.

      On Windows users could install the Google Cloud Printer application to add cloud printing functionality to the operating system.

    • Google Cloud Print will be shut down on December 31, 2020

      After offering printing from any device, from any location, to any web-connected printer with Cloud Print, Google is shutting down the service that has technically been a beta product since 2010. Cloud Print will be gone by the end of next year and users will need to find an alternative before December 31, 2020. Chrome OS, which originally relied on Cloud Print entirely for printing needs, eschewing the need to develop native printing controls, is now going full native.

      Chrome OS already handles some administrative tasks for printers that use the Common Unix Printing System (CUPS). Google promises to expand administrative options through the end of the year, and add more robust support for external print servers and other security policy administration in 2020. Since Chrome OS and its apps relied entirely on Cloud Print, Google will also be developing APIs for third-party developers to handle printing tasks.

    • Health/Nutrition

    • Security (Confidentiality/Integrity/Availabilitiy)

      • Security updates for Friday

        Security updates have been issued by Fedora (dpdk, mingw-djvulibre, mingw-hunspell, mingw-ilmbase, mingw-OpenEXR, php-symfony, php-symfony3, and rsyslog), openSUSE (chromium and squid), SUSE (aspell, cups, djvulibre, and dpdk), and Ubuntu (djvulibre).

      • Roboto Botnet network building, DDoS not a priority
      • Google quintuples top reward for hacking Android to $1 million

        Google, which has already paid security researchers over $15 million since launching its bug bounty program in 2010, today expanded its Android Security Rewards program. Most notably, the company is introducing a top prize of $1 million. The previous top prize was $200,000. That’s technically a quintupling, although the maximum reward could be even higher. Google is launching a 50% bonus for exploits found on specific developer preview versions of Android, meaning the top reward could net you $1.5 million.

      • Bad Binder: Android In-The-Wild Exploit (Project Zero)

        Over on the Project Zero blog, Maddie Stone has a lengthy post about a zero-day exploit that was found and fixed in the Android Binder interprocess communication mechanism. The post details the search for the problem, which was apparently being used in the wild, its fix, and how it can be exploited. This is all part of an effort to “make zero-day hard”; one of the steps the project is taking is to disseminate more information on these bugs.

      • Bad Binder: Android In-The-Wild Exploit

        On October 3, 2019, we disclosed issue 1942 (CVE-2019-2215), which is a use-after-free in Binder in the Android kernel. The bug is a local privilege escalation vulnerability that allows for a full compromise of a vulnerable device. If chained with a browser renderer exploit, this bug could fully compromise a device through a malicious website.

        We reported this bug under a 7-day disclosure deadline rather than the normal 90-day disclosure deadline. We made this decision based on credible evidence that an exploit for this vulnerability exists in the wild and that it’s highly likely that the exploit was being actively used against users.

        In May 2019, Project Zero published a blog post and spreadsheet for tracking “in-the-wild” 0-day exploits. In July 2019, I joined Project Zero to focus on the use of 0-day exploits in the wild. We expect our approach to this work will change and mature as we gain more experience with studying 0-days, but the mission stays the same: to “make zero-day hard”.

    • Defence/Aggression

      • Korean Peninsula Troubles Pose U.S. Security Challenge

        Defense Secretary Mark Esper is returning from Asia with the U.S. still facing a trio of troubles on the Korean peninsula that pose risks to the national security of the U.S. and one of its most important alliances in the region.

      • America Will Never Live Down Trump’s War Crime Pardons

        Donald Trump loves him some bluster, worships machismo, and always has. Spectacle over substance has long been the name of his game. Decades before his successful presidential run, back when he was still a cartoon billionaire playboy, Trump took out a full-page newspaper advertisement that argued that New York state should bring back the death penalty for five adolescents arrested in 1989 for allegedly beating and raping a jogger—even though the boys hadn’t yet been convicted. Turns out that the infamous Central Park Five were later exonerated by DNA evidence. To this day, Trump refuses to apologize, even though his suggestion would have resulted in the execution of five innocent kids. But regret isn’t part of The Donald’s playbook.

      • What’s Happening In Bolivia Is a Violent Right-Wing Coup

        The coup d’etat in Bolivia has divided not only that country but the world. The mainstream press, the Trump administration, the Washington-compliant Organization of American States, and right-wing governments have hailed the ousting of Evo Morales, Bolivia’s first indigenous president. 

      • Christianity is the Religion of Imperialism

        Saba Mahmood is a very talented scholar who has assimilated a post-colonial sensibility. She has learned to look at the world through the eyes of those who have been the pedagogical objects of European colonialism. The literature on Orientalism is vast; and the evidence suggests that Europe cannot easily shake off the deep-seated assumption that its way of life and scholarly products are the Archimedean point for comprehending the entire world. Tomoko Masuzawa (The invention of world religions [2005]) demonstrated provocatively that the idea of “world religion” is an intellectual construction that implicitly assumes that Christianity is the only universal religion that breaks free from locale and particularity.

    • Environment

      • Open Letter to the People of Planet Earth

        The Galactic Gardeners’ Forum

        This may not be the best time to contact you, but waiting may only make things worse. Since we’re your first neighbors in the galaxy to make contact, we hope you’ll consider us a welcoming committee with a warning. We’ve hacked into all your major channels of communication to transmit our message in every human language. We do not want to go through “official channels” or speak only with your corrupt rulers. We want our words to reach everyone.

        We come from a remote handful of living planets and moons scattered across this galaxy. We are a network of galactic gardeners who nurture life by sharing our stories, experiences, knowledge, and ideas. We offer each other encouragement, constructive criticism, advice, and hard-won wisdom. But unfortunately, the vast distance between our worlds deprives us of the joy of actually meeting face-to-face. We’ve decided to contact you because we cherish life everywhere we find it—and life on your planet is in grave danger.

        You inhabit an astounding planet. It supports a living tapestry of great vibrancy and splendor. We’ve witnessed Earth-life evolve for eons. Because you are such a young, impetuous species, we’ve refrained from contacting you. We did not know how making contact would affect you, since your awareness remains fractured by conflicts between the powerful rich and the powerless poor; as well as between nations, races, and religions. But we felt compelled to act because your carbon-addicted way of life has made you a threat to yourself and the magnificent biosphere that made you.

        Your consciousness has yet to reach the level of holistic awareness and life-preserving empathy so essential for you to become a vital part of your biosphere’s immune system. We hoped this was the path you were on since your ecological sciences and some of your spiritual beliefs extol the need for all humans to care for each other and your “Mother Earth.”

      • Is Greta Thunberg a Time Traveler ‘Here to Save Us’ From Climate Emergency’? 120-Year-Old Photo Sparks Flood of Conspiracy Theories

        “Wishing her all the best and success in her mission to save the Earth. We can use [all] the help we can get!”

    • Finance

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

    • Censorship/Free Speech

    • Privacy/Surveillance

    • Freedom of Information / Freedom of the Press

    • Civil Rights/Policing

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