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05.24.20

Links 25/5/2020: Linux 5.7 RC7 and TeleIRC 2.0.0

Posted in News Roundup at 10:58 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • This unique DIY laptop is designed for ‘hacking, customization and privacy’

        MNT Research GmbH just launched a campaign on Crowd Supply for laptop that’s completely Open Source, the MNT Reform via Tech Radar. The laptop was built to be a “DIY laptop for hacking, customization, and privacy.” It protects privacy by not having microphones or cameras, and can be repaired with a single screwdriver, according to MNT Research GmbH. You can order an MNT Reform that’s already put together to $1,300 or order one to build yourself for $999.

        The MNT Reform is the only laptop to fully comply with the Open Source Hardware Association standards, according to MNT Research GmbH. In its campaign video, its makers highlight how the laptop is “open hardware and fully documented.” The drivers, input devices, system controllers, and other components are open source.

        In addition to being open source, the MNT Reform is built for simple repairs. MNT Research GmbH shows that it can be taken apart with a single screwdriver. You can also swap out the batteries, as in several cylindrical batteries, which is certainly unique for a laptop. It has eight 18650 battery cells that look like standard batteries.

      • Tuxedo Book BA15 is a Linux laptop with Ryzen 5 3500U for $935 and up

        While you can install Linux on most laptop computers with Intel or AMD chips, a handful of companies will sell you a notebook that comes with Linux pre-installed. But most recent models have had Intel inside.

        Now German company Tuxedo Computers is selling an AMD Ryzen-powered model called the Tuxedo Book BA15.

      • Switching from MacBook to Chromebook: Is Chrome OS good enough?



        Chrome OS often gets maligned as a platform that you can’t do “real work” on, and in some cases, that’s true. But sometimes, you don’t need a computer that does absolutely everything, and that’s why I decided to give switching to Chrome OS on my laptop a try. While I’ve retained my iMac as a proper workstation, my aging MacBook Air was due for an upgrade, and the opportunity to switch platforms presented itself. Could a simpler, cheaper Chromebook replace my MacBook for working on the go? While I found that the answer was decidedly “no” in some situations—and that simply adapting to Chrome OS and its limitations was a huge adjustment—I do think Chrome now has a place in my workflow, albeit one that is rather hit or miss. Chrome is also definitely still a problematic platform, and those limitations tend to define it in a lot of ways, which I’ll explore more in this post.

        For some added context, here are the devices I’m throwing into the mix: I use a 27-inch iMac with 40GB of RAM and a 9th-gen 3.7GHz 6-core Intel Core i5 at home while my MacBook is running on 4GB of RAM and an aging 4th-gen dual-core Core i5. My new laptop/convertible is a 14-inch HP Chromebook x360 with 8GB of RAM and an 8th-gen dual-core Intel Core i3 (Taylor reviewed a similarly equipped variant here at Android Police).

    • Server

      • What happens when you run Linux on a toaster?

        In today’s data centre, software-defined-everything is the new normal, and for plenty of good reasons: agility, flexibility, longevity. Amongst all the hype however, the precious role of hardware in the ecosystem seems to have been forgotten, cast aside in the insatiable quest for better results. But what has that actually done for those hard-fought-for results? Are you cashing in on false efficiencies by using cheap, off-the-shelf, generic appliances? We’d like to argue that yes, you have.

        Hardware has been so commoditised in the data centre to the point of obscurity, and in so doing, we’ve shot ourselves in the foot because it’s been to the detriment of the results we’re seeking.

        Think about it – just because you can build a toaster that runs Linux, it doesn’t mean you should.

      • Solo.io intros API management tools for the open-source Istio service mesh

        Cloud-native software company Solo.io Inc. today is making available what it says is the industry’s first Istio Developer Portal, which aims to streamline the onboarding process for developers in order to improve experiences and productivity.

        Solo sells software that helps companies address the challenges of implementing microservices, which are the components of modern, containerized applications that can run in multiple computing environments. It offers a variety of tools that help with this, including its Service Mesh Hub, which helps organizations streamline the deployment, management and extensibility of any service mesh on any cloud, for any application.

      • Rancher Labs Launches Rancher Academy

        Rancher Labs, creators of the most widely adopted Kubernetes management platform, today announced the launch of Rancher Academy. Rapid enterprise adoption of containers and Rancher’s emergence as a leader in enterprise Kubernetes management have created strong demand for a professional, Rancher-led certification program. The announcement not only addresses this need, but further cements Rancher’s commitment to education and to enabling the complete democratization of Kubernetes.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

    • Kernel Space

      • Linux Work Culminating On A “READFILE” Syscall For Reading Small Files Efficiently

        Stemming from recent kernel discussions over a hypothetical new system call for reading small files more efficiently, Greg Kroah-Hartman has been working on the readfile() system call and it’s looking like it is taking shape well enough to premiere soon in a new mainline kernel release.

      • AMD Sensor Fusion Hub Support Is Not Coming With Linux 5.8

        For those AMD Ryzen laptop users eager to see the Sensor Fusion Hub driver for supporting the different hardware sensors on these AMD Zen laptops, that driver still isn’t going to be merged for the upcoming Linux 5.8 cycle even after the patches were first published months ago.

        AMD SFH missed the mark for Linux 5.7 due to concerns raised over the new code at the time. Since then, there hasn’t been any new patch revisions out from AMD for their SFH driver. So it’s not really a surprise over it not being queued for the upcoming Linux 5.8 merge window.

      • Linux 5.7-rc7
        So if rc6 was a bit bigger than I would have liked, rc7 looks very
        normal. Not the smallest we've had, not the largest. It's right in the
        middle of the pack.
        
        And none of the fixes look like there's anything particularly scary
        going on. Most of it is very small, and the slightly larger patches
        aren't huge either and are well-contained (the two slightly larger
        patches are to s390 and rxrpc - and even those patches aren't really
        all _that_ big).
        
        Other than that, it's mostly drivers (gpu and networking stand out,
        but small stuff in various other drivers) and some misc small patches
        all over.
        
        So it looks like I was worried for nothing last rc. Of course,
        anything can still change, but everything _looks_ all set for a
        regular release scheduled for next weekend. Knock wood.
        
        Most of the discussion I have seen has already been about various
        cleanups and new features for 5.8, and I have one early pull request
        already pending.
        
        In fact, the biggest excitement this week for me was just that I
        upgraded my main machine, and for the first time in about 15 years, my
        desktop isn't Intel-based. No, I didn't switch to ARM yet, but I'm now
        rocking an AMD Threadripper 3970x. My 'allmodconfig' test builds are
        now three times faster than they used to be, which doesn't matter so
        much right now during the calming down period, but I will most
        definitely notice the upgrade during the next merge window.
        
        Anyway, go out and give this a good final test so that we won't have
        any unhappy surprises after 5.7 is released..
        
                     Linus
        
      • Linux 5.7-rc7 Kernel Released With It Looking To Be In Good Shape

        While last week’s Linux 5.7-rc6 kernel was quite big, Linux 5.7-rc7 is out today and it’s on the smaller side of things in reassuring Linus Torvalds that the stable release of this kernel can happen soon.

        Linus Torvalds noted in this evening’s 5.7-rc7 announcement, “rc7 looks very normal. Not the smallest we’ve had, not the largest. It’s right in the middle of the pack. And none of the fixes look like there’s anything particularly scary going on. Most of it is very small, and the slightly larger patches aren’t huge either and are well-contained (the two slightly larger patches are to s390 and rxrpc – and even those patches aren’t really all _that_ big).”

      • Linus Torvalds Switches To AMD Ryzen Threadripper After 15 Years Of Intel Systems

        An interesting anecdote shared in today’s Linux 5.7-rc7 announcement is word that Linux and Git creator Linus Torvalds switched his main rig over to an AMD Ryzen Threadripper.

        At least for what he has said in the past, Linus has long been using Intel boxes given his close relationship with the company (and even close proximity to many of the Intel Portland open-source crew). In fact, he commented this is the first time in about fifteen years not using an Intel system as his primary machine.

      • Linux-creator Linus Torvalds joins Linus Sebastian of Linus Tech Tips in embracing AMD over Intel

        I have long been an AMD “fanboy,” usually choosing that company’s processors for my PC builds. Why? I prefer value to just throwing cash at raw performance, and with AMD I have always gotten plenty of power for my money. Historically, on the higher-end, Intel used to beat AMD regularly, but nowadays, things have really changed. AMD often destroys the competition across the board, as Intel has grown quite stale. Are Intel chips bad now? Not at all, but the innovation is coming from AMD. Facts.

        And so, I was quite delighted when Linus Sebastian of YouTube channel Linus Tech Tips (of whom I am a big fan) saw the light and began embracing AMD lately (despite his love for Intel). It was very neat to see AMD Ryzen and Ryzen Threadripper processors being heralded by someone who is typically an Intel guy. Believe it or not, yet another Linus (no, not Linus van Pelt from Peanuts) is jumping to AMD, and this time it is probably a bigger deal than Sebastian’s current change of allegiance. You see, Linus Torvalds, the father of Linux, is no longer using an Intel CPU on his main computer. Woah.

    • Applications

      • Transmission 3.0 Released, Here’s How to Install it on Ubuntu

        A new version of open-source torrent client Transmission is available to download. In this post I share details on what’s changed and show you how to install the update on you’re system using the official Transmission PPA.

        Transmission 3.0 is the first major major update to this much-loved cross-platform torrent client for over 2 years so (naturally) ships with a batch of overdue bug fixes, feature enhancements, and compatibility improvements as a result.

        Among these is improved support for IPv6 addresses in the RPC server as well as throughout the app in general. Verification is turned on by default for curl fetches, and the client reverts to using a torrent’s hash as the base name for torrent resumes (which will fix any “Error: Unable to save resume file: File name too long” error when re-adding a Magnet link).

      • TeleIRC v2.0.0 is officially here!

        After almost eight months of work, the TeleIRC Team is happy to announce General Availability of TeleIRC v2.0.0 today. Thanks to the hard work of our volunteer community, we are celebrating an on-time release of a major undertaking to make a more sustainable future for TeleIRC.

      • What’s new in TeleIRC v2.0.0

        TeleIRC v2.0.0 is the latest major release of our open source Telegram <=> IRC bridge. Download the latest release and read the release announcement for the full story.

        There are several new and noteworthy changes in TeleIRC v2.0.0. This post walks you through the major changes and differences for TeleIRC v2.0.0. Read on for the highlight reel of this release.

      • TSDgeos’ blog: chmk a simple CHM viewer

        So I thought, ok maybe I can do a quick CHM viewer just based in QtWebEngine without trying to fit it into the Okular backend to support different formats.

      • Petter Reinholdtsen: More reliable vlc bittorrent plugin in Debian (version 2.9)

        I am very happy to report that a more reliable VLC bittorrent plugin was just uploaded into debian. This fixes a couple of crash bugs in the plugin, hopefully making the VLC experience even better when streaming directly from a bittorrent source. The package is currently in Debian unstable, but should be available in Debian testing in two days.

    • Instructionals/Technical

    • Games

      • King’s Defold engine is now open source through the Defold Foundation

        Developer King has announced that it is making its game engine Defold an open source game engine, allowing anyone to create mobile and web games on it. To make it truly open source King has now moved the engine to the Defold foundation where anyone can access it and tinker with it, with the hope that open collaboration will make the Defold engine better to use for everyone. Dozens of games have already been created with Defold and this move will ensure that many more will be as well.
        Tjodolf Sommestad, Chief Development Officer at King, said
        “We’re hugely impressed by the Defold team, and look forward to seeing many great gaming experiences come to life. We’ve seen millions of players already playing the King games run on the Defold engine and we’re excited to see the community come together even more, with the support of the Defold Foundation.”

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • Open source digital painting app Krita comes to Android and ChromeOS (Beta)

          Krita is a free and open source application designed for digital painting, 2D animation, and image editing. Originally designed for Linux, Krita has also been available for Windows since 2014. And now the developers have released the first public beta of Krita for Android and Chrome OS.

        • Open source graphics editor, Krita, now available in the Play Store

          The open source graphics editor, Krita, is now available to download via the Play Store, its developers have announced. The Play Store version of the software is still the full desktop version of Krita so it doesn’t include a touch interface; it may, therefore, not be so great on a small Android phone, but should be quite decent on a larger tablet of Chrome OS device.

          The Play Store version is based on the latest Krita 4.2.9 which launched in March. The project said that unlike the Windows and Steam store editions, it isn’t asking for money for the Play Store edition as it’s the only way people can install Krita on Android devices. If you do want to support the project, however, you can buy a supporter badge from within Krita.

          If you want to try out this beta, you’ll need to navigate to the Play Store listing with a compatible device then just press install. Ideally, you’ll want to try it out on a device with a large screen as the app is still optimised for desktop systems. Also, keep in mind that the product is still in Early Access so you could run into some problems that haven’t been fixed yet.

    • Distributions

      • Reviews

        • Review: Pop!_OS 20.04

          Pop!_OS (or simply Pop, as I will refer to it throughout most of this article) is an Ubuntu-based distribution created by System76. The distribution sticks fairly close to its Ubuntu parent in terms of software, desktop environment, and features, but makes a number of customizations to the user interface and drivers. The focus of Pop appears to be on making it easier to use the desktop for work, especially for people who want to focus on keyboard usage over moving the mouse pointer.

          Pop is available in two editions for 64-bit (x86_64) computers. One edition ships with Intel and AMD video drivers while the other ships with NVIDIA drivers. Otherwise the two editions appear to be the same. The installation media is a 2GB download.

          The latest release of Pop is version 20.04 which is based on Ubuntu’s 20.04 LTS release and should therefore receive five years of security updates. There are a handful of new features available. One is an easy point-n-click method for associating a specific application with a laptop’s dedicated or NVIDIA video card. This should help users find a better balance between performance and energy savings. This release also puts more focus on providing keyboard shortcuts to manipulate windows instead of using the mouse. We can see a list of all available window management shortcuts in the desktop’s notification menu under the heading “View All Shortcuts”. I will come back to this feature later.

          There is an optional feature to auto-tile new application windows. This feature is off by default, but is available through the same notification menu in the upper-right corner of the desktop.

          On the subject of software management, Pop 20.04 offers a few new features. One is a firmware updating tool which can be found in the GNOME settings panel. The other feature is that Pop enables Flatpak support with the Flathub repository enabled by default. While Ubuntu has focused on Snap packages and does not enable Flatpak support by default, Pop is going the other way and focuses on Flatpak while not enabling Snap.

          [...]

          While Pop!_OS can and does stand on its own as a fairly friendly, fully featured desktop distribution, I spent most of my time mentally comparing Pop’s 20.04 release against Ubuntu 20.04, which I had tested just a few weeks prior. For instance, Pop has a similar installer, and both are friendly, but Pop’s feels more streamlined and its options feel better explained. Or at least explained in a way that I think more non-technical users will understand.

          The themes and desktop layout are quite a bit different. Not so much with the positioning of items, but the look and style of the two GNOME implementations is quite a bit different. Ubuntu is, shall we say, bold in its colour choices while Pop sticks with a more familiar blue and black combination.

          Ubuntu uses two software managers (one for installing and removing packages and one for upgrading software) while Pop uses just one. To make matters more interesting the harder working Pop!_Shop is again more streamlined than its Ubuntu equivalent.

          Pop’s desktop performance ran circles around Ubuntu on the same test equipment and in the same VirtualBox environment. I found this especially interesting as the two distributions use the same kernel, the same desktop, and most of the same versions of software. Yet desktop performance was night-and-day in its contrast with Pop coming out the clear winner in both test environments. Despite the speed improvement, memory usage was about the same.

          When I was running Ubuntu I mentioned that when using ext4 the distribution failed to boot and, when using Ubuntu on ZFS the distribution often had to be launched from the recovery console. This problem did not manifest on Pop and the distribution consistently booted without problems.

          To me it is interesting that these two distributions can share so much in common, be nearly 99% identical, yet produce such different results. The little tweaks and shortcuts the Pop team have put into their distribution make it a much more pleasant operating system to use compared to its parent running on my equipment. Those little changes, the tiny customizations, may seem small on paper, but they produced a much better GNOME Shell experience than I have had on Ubuntu or Fedora to date and I think that makes Pop!_OS work looking at.

      • SUSE/OpenSUSE

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • IBM’s new open-source tool helps developers make their apps more accessible

          When designing an application, developers might not put accessibility on top of their list. Plus, the developer might not have a handy list of what guidelines they should follow when thinking about accessible features. To address this issue, IBM has released a free toolkit and an accessibility checker that will help developers fine-tune their applications for people with disabilities.

          IBM’s new tools are divided into two parts: a set of public guidelines called IBM Equal Access Toolkit and a Checker that identifies shortcomings in your application from an accessibility standpoint.

        • IBM Launches Open Source Equal Access Toolkit

          In a blog post published today, IBM’s program director of accessibility, Simeon McAleer, announced the company is releasing what they call the Equal Access Toolkit. He writes, in part: “I am excited to announce a new open source offering and design toolkit that give designers and developers the tools they need to make their websites and applications accessible.”

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Remote-team managers can learn a lot from open-source communities

        Instead of trying to reinvent management from first principles, we can turn to other areas with experience navigating distributed teams with individuals managing competing commitments. Open-source software communities—which also are remote communities connected by the internet—have long included the role of community managers. These are the people who tend to the health of the community, by maintaining communication, motivation, efficiency, and engagement. It’s a well-honed practice that remote managers can learn a lot from.

        [...]

        A pandemic is an interesting mix of people who are over-socialized (such as people with families denied their usual down or alone time) and under-socialized (like singles living alone denied their usual social interactions). While there is a certain amount of camaraderie and shared experience that may come from those who navigated the switch from office to remote together, what about new people? Think about the experiences of your team, and outline the goals that you might want to achieve. Then, you can come up with options that might help support those goals. Remember to be deliberate about what should be async, and what should be opt-in (or out).

      • Is Proprietary Software Really Better Than Open-Source?

        Software development for statistical, analytical, or empirical purposes was dominated, for the first 30 years, by companies like SAS, SPSS, Minitab, Stata, and others. These companies developed products and sold licenses or tiered-price packages for their data-analytics software. But beginning in the mid-1990s, and especially after 2000, the open-source movement began encroaching into what was once the sole purview of pay-per statistical software. Python jumped from traditional programming into analytics, and the new, stats-specific programming language R arose from the remnants of Fortran and C. These products were freely available, constantly updated, and enjoyed near-instant worldwide distribution.

        The most dramatic difference between these new products and the proprietary hegemons of analytical programming, though, concerned development. Open-source languages’ source codes were freely available for modification by any user. This approach departed markedly from the traditional software development model, i.e., hire the best minds from computational statistics or social science, concentrate their talents at or near corporate headquarters, and jealously guard professionally developed source code.

        In line with Eric Raymond’s essays, two paradigms of statistical programming have thus arisen. Which is preferable? Of course, both have costs and benefits. In lieu of simply looking at the price of statistical software in monetary terms, though, consider some of the largest non-pecuniary costs for comparison. I argue that the largest perceived costs of open-source software relative to proprietary software are actually not drawbacks at all. Namely, conversion from proprietary legacy to open-source, security risks of open-source relative to proprietary, and the learning-curve gradient of open-source versus proprietary are all either overstated as costs or actually turn out to be long-run benefits.

      • Is Open Source the Way Forward for SD-WAN?

        The dream of SD-WAN is pretty simple: make networking faster, better, cheaper, and more secure. The problem is proprietary technologies simply can’t scale to meet these aspirations, says Sorell Slaymaker, principal consulting analyst at TechVision Research.

        Speaking during a recent webinar, Slaymaker joined flexiWAN Founder and CEO Amir Zmora, whose company is the first to develop and launch an open source SD-WAN platform, in discussing the state of the SD-WAN market. They specifically discussed how an open source approach can address the technology’s most pressing challenges.

        According to Slaymaker, many of the problems facing the SD-WAN market are born out of the lack of any kind of Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF)-style industry standard.

      • Lanner Whitebox uCPE Certified by flexiWAN Enables SD-WAN in Open Architecture

        Lanner Electronics Inc, the leading uCPE and MEC Whitebox Solutions™ provider, today announced its partnership with flexiWAN, the pioneer in open source SD-WAN software, to offer SD-WAN solution in an open, modular and vendor-agnostic architecture which allows for dynamic loading of router and management networking applications bringing to networking the concepts of the mobile application (different from the VNF concept that is also possible). With this strategic partnership, Lanner’s white-box uCPE hardware NCA-1510 becomes pre-validated for flexiWAN’s SD-WAN to liberate enterprises and service providers from vendor lock-in equipment, allowing the implementation of third-party VNF and simplified management in traffic routing and application-optimization.

      • Avoiding the lock-in trap – The financial impact of perpetual support contracts

        The discussion around open source and saving money has been going on for as long as open source has existed. While there are definite benefits that open source can provide in terms of controlling your data and fully understanding the code that is in place, cost saving are often seen as the biggest reason to move from proprietary software. However, how can those cost savings be achieved in practical terms, and why are they still possible so many years after open source was first developed?

        One of the greatest challenges is understanding and quantifying the impact of software licensing for proprietary software, and how this can lead to problems over time. The issue is not whether suppliers should be paid for their support services, or be able to license their software in the way that suits them. Instead, problems occur through lack of clarity around historical support contracts. This is where open source solutions can provide immediate savings.

      • How PowerDNS turned ‘abysmal failure’ into open source success

        However, here’s some hope for those open source developers who can’t seem to figure out how to turn their code into copious quantities of cash: PowerDNS. In a conversation with Bert Hubert, founder of PowerDNS, a leading provider of open source DNS software, services, and support, he detailed how the failure of PowerDNS as a proprietary product eventually led to open source success. This despite one VC telling Hubert, “Bert, you made a product for people with no money that don’t want to buy it from you.”

      • [Satire] Huge if true… Trump explodes as he learns open source could erode China tech ban

        The Register has obtained the following transcript of a recent White House conversation between US President Donald Trump and advisors regarding the ban on American technology reaching Huawei.

      • Web Browsers

        • Chromium

          • Top Chrome extensions to improve productivity

            Chrome is by far the most popular browser. It is well equipped, works quickly and is constantly being developed. However, it always causes trouble for its users – for example due to its extremely high memory requirements.
            Surely, as many of you already see first-hand when working with our PCs, most tasks involve direct use of the Internet to a greater or lesser extent, specifically with our browsers , with the advantages and drawbacks that it entails.

            And it is necessary to take into account that working online on certain occasions can be a great distraction that takes us away from our really important tasks. This is due to a large extent, to the constant notifications and updates that are popping out from platforms such as Facebook , Skype , Twitter , WhatsApp , etc. That is why we sometimes make take certain measures in order to avoid these distractions either from Windows 10, MacOS or Ubuntu or from any of the platforms that we regularly use.

        • Mozilla

          • William Lachance: The humble blog

            Like many organizations, Mozilla’s gone down the path of Google Docs, Zoom and Slack which makes me more than a little sad: good ideas disappear down the memory hole super quickly with these tools, not to mention the fact that they are closed-by-default (even to people inside Mozilla!). My view on “open” is a bit more nuanced than it used to be: I no longer think everything need be all-public, all-the-time— but I still think talking about and through our ideas (even if imperfectly formed or stated) with a broad audience builds trust and leads to better outcomes.

      • SaaS/Back End/Databases

        • Why Technology Should Take a Backseat for Data Projects to Succeed

          Data driven is a nice buzzword. We run around our organizations shouting that we need to be data driven and try to wade through all our data to find the nuggets of gold we’ve been promised. We convince ourselves, as technologists, that we have big data, massive streams of data on par with Uber and we need the latest open source projects to handle this.

          Businesses have empowered engineering teams to drive data projects. At the same time I, like many in the industry, had been guilty of focusing on technology in order to further my career, worried we would fall behind the rest of the market unless we adopted the latest open source.

          [...]

          Where I have seen success is when powerful open source technologies have been used while giving business users with domain knowledge the ability to self-serve their data access. A ubiquitous language, such as SQL, makes it possible for a wider array of users to serve themselves and get visibility into the data platform and data applications. Business experts who were able to discover, explore, visualize and build using data in an accessible way advanced the organization’s goals and optimized data in ways I couldn’t because they were the domain knowledge experts. The best role for a technologist is to be a technology partner to the business and enabler of the business goals.

          Without building integrated data teams of business analysts and technologists, we will continue to see this high project failure rate — which isn’t acceptable in any other industry. Imagine 85% of, say, construction projects being abandoned?

        • Percona CEO: Take an unbiased (multi-cloud) approach to cloud databases

          Database misconfigurations in the cloud are a problem, one might even say that it’s becoming a common problem.

          As founder and CEO at Percona, Peter Zaitsev said this week during his organization’s Percona Live Online conference, you can’t just slap a database into a cloud and think that everything is all going to fall in place and be okay.

        • MongoDB Gets a New Distribution, as Percona Grasps the Nettle

          Open source database specialist Percona today announced its very own MongoDB distribution (and managed services for it); an unusual move given the latter’s somewhat restrictive license terms, and one likely to put the cat among the pigeons at MongoDB’s headquarters.

          MongoDB, an $11 billion (by market capitalisation) non-relational database specialist, offers a bare-bones open source version of its software that customers are free to download and use; but makes its money providing managed services for/licenses to more proprietary, all-singing, all-dancing versions of the database; with other tools plugged in.

          As a result, MongoDB (the database) is a bit of a MongoDB (the company)-only show, despite the cloud hyperscalers’ best efforts.

        • DB or not DB: Open-sourcer Percona pushes out plethora of SQL and NoSQL tweaks in bid to win over suits

          Open-source database support and distribution biz Percona has flung out new versions of MongoDB and Postgres and a managed database service as it looks to win over more enterprise folk.

          In its first distribution of MongoDB – the document-oriented NoSQL database – Percona has included enhancements to support in-memory storage HashiCorp Vault for data access control, data at rest encryption, audit logging, external LDAP authentication and hot backup support for enterprise. It is also releasing separate backup and restore functionality for clusters and non-sharded data sets.

      • Education

        • InnovateEDU Develops Free, Open-Source Data Extraction Tool for Google Classroom During COVID-19

          Today, InnovateEDU, a non-profit organization whose mission is to eliminate the achievement gap in K-12 education by developing innovative models and tools to serve, inform, and enhance teaching and learning, announced that they are offering a free, open-source Google Classroom Connector to any school or district that utilizes G Suite for Education. Realizing that teachers and administrators are facing challenges in gaining insights into students’ performance and engagement during remote instruction, InnovateEDU developed a data extraction tool that can be used in a school’s Google Cloud environment ensuring that data is secure and interoperable.

      • Funding

        • London-based New Vector nabs €4.1 million for ‘Matrix’, its decentralised comms ecosystem

          Today New Vector, who is behind new collaboration solutions used by European governments and organisations alike, has announced raising approximately €4.1 million from Automattic Inc. This new investor brings both the financial backing and experience of being the parent company of web publishing and e-commerce platforms WordPress.com, WooCommerce, Jetpack, and enterprise WordPress VIP.

          New Vector, founded in 2017, is on a mission to enable governments, businesses and individuals to run their own secure communication infrastructure, while interconnecting via the global Matrix network. So far the startup has developed Riot, the flagship Matrix-based messaging app, and Modular, the leading Matrix-based hosting platform. New Vector, formed by the team who created Matrix, also provides significant development to the Matrix open source project (an open network for secure, decentralised communication which lets organisations and individuals run their own collaboration apps).

        • Automattic pumps $4.6M into New Vector to help grow Matrix, an open, decentralized comms ecosystem
        • Headless CMS company Strapi raises another $10 million
        • Open-Source ‘Headless’ CMS Company Strapi Raises $10 Million

          Strapi — the open-source “headless” content management system (CMS) — announced it raised $10 million in Series A funding led by Index Ventures. Including this round of funding, the company has raised a total of $14 million.

          Previously, Strapi raised $4 million in seed funding in October 2019 with Accel and Stride.VC. And the company also hired former Docker head of community Victor Coisne as VP of marketing and the company also announced plans to open its first U.S. office in San Francisco.

      • Openness/Sharing/Collaboration

        • Waltham-based ICS partners with RespiraWorks to create open source ventilator
        • Physicists design FDA-approved, open-source ventilator to combat COVID-19

          A group of physicists specializing in the dark matter composition of the universe have shifted focus to design an FDA-authorized, open-source ventilator that can treat patients with COVID-19.

          The device, known as Mechanical Ventilator Milano (MVM), was designed by members of the Global Argon Dark Matter Collaboration, an international coalition dedicated to the study of dark matter, in six weeks. A small number of off-the-shelf components were chosen to build it so manufacturing could take place swiftly.

          “As an open-source device the different components that are used in the design are known to the public, including the hardware and software components; and the software can even be downloaded and used as is,” Andrew Renshaw, an assistant professor of physics at the University of Houston and a member of the collaboration, told HCB News. “The idea behind this is that the design can then be picked up by different manufacturers from around the world and they can work with the MVM team to either use it as is, or make modifications that can be included in a model they would then market.”

        • Commons: how the art of co-operation is the only way out of this crisis

          Our broken systems are proving incapable to cope with the COVID-19 emergency, let alone the looming threat of social and environmental collapse. Yet the long-held practices of the commons are becoming more obvious solutions to the world’s biggest problems. The commons movement, as a complement to established movements – Degrowth, Open Source, anti-austerity, decolonialism, Social Solidarity Economy, ecofeminism, Buen Vivir – is rising.

          [...]

          You can find the commons in urban gardens, collective fisheries, farming, foresting, food systems, cities and creative commons licensing. They often transcend the limitations of the market/state system. Specific examples include cooperatively managed forests, water distribution irrigation systems, social currencies, Free/Libre and Open-Source Software, self organized urban spaces, distributed manufacturing networks and more.

        • Open Source Repository for COVID-19 Drug-Delivery Simulation Data Launched

          The Molecular Sciences Software Institute (MolSSI), based in Virginia Tech’s Corporate Research Center, has launched an open-source website that will allow biomolecular scientists from around the world to share computer-aided drug-testing simulations targeting the protein at the center of COVID-19.

          [...]

          Under the leadership of Teresa Head-Gordon, a MolSSI co-director and a professor of chemistry, bioengineering, and chemical and biomolecular engineering at the University of California, Berkeley, the MolSSI team started work on the COVID-19 website about a month ago, after scores of scientists began discussing ways to share simulation modeling data they had on the coronavirus.

          The hub allows biomolecular researchers to compare computational models of the COVID-19 virus and to share what findings the scientists have made on drug delivery to the host protein of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. “If we’re all trying to act fast, we’ll want to focus on a certain class of drugs that are repurposed, they’ve already been through clinical trials for other diseases or related viruses,” Head-Gordon said. “You have known molecules, and you want to see if there are places on the target protein that you can disrupt.”

        • Open source medical equipment repair database for Covid-19

          iFixit is creating a comprehensive database of repair manuals for medical equipment such as ventilators to help medical professionals around the world tackle the Covid-19 pandemic
          Teardown and repair specialist iFixit is creating a database of repair manuals for medical equipment to help tackle the Covid-19 outbreak around the world and is encouraging manufacturers to help.

          Hospitals are having trouble getting service information to fix medical equipment, and that is being made worse by the Covid-19 pandemic. “We’ve heard countless stories from biomedical technicians about how medical device manufacturers make their jobs more difficult by restricting access to repair information,” said Kyle Wiens, co-founder of iFixit.

        • Space10 designs open-source bee homes for digital fabrication

          “I want people to design a dream home for bees that provides the perfect environment for their offspring, while at the same time being incredibly easy to design, assemble and place,” said Klein, who is based in Copenhagen.

          “It was important for me that Bee Home is aesthetically pleasing and almost feels like you’ve added a sculpture to your garden or your balcony,” she continued. “This project really exemplifies how design can do good for both people and their environment.”

        • SPACE10 Creates Open-Source Bee Homes for World Bee Day

          IKEA’s research and design lab SPACE10 has created a new open source Bee Home. Working with Bakken & Bæck and designer Tanita Klein, the team has launched the free Bee Home project to coincidence with the United Nations International Bee Day. The project takes advantage of digital fabrication and parametric design so that people can design and fabricate their own Bee Home locally.

        • Space10 Launches Free and Open-Source ‘Bee Home’ Project

          SPACE10 recently collaborated with Bakken & Bæck and Tanita Klein to launch Bee Home, an open invitation for everyone to give bees the space they need. Through a digital platform, the project allows anyone to design, customize and download their very own Bee Home locally.

          This project takes advantage of the newest developments in digital fabrication and parametric design and introduces entirely new distribution methods to enable a fully democratic design process. Not only are the design files available and free for download, but the assembly of the Bee Home doesn’t require tools of any kind. Inspired by Japanese wood joinery and a few tricks in carpentry, the multiple storeys of the Bee Home are actually locked together through a ‘spine and key’ system that maintains the home’s structural integrity while making it incredibly easy to assemble and dismantle.

        • Vote to include aero handicap and open source ideas

          While a lot of the main target in current weeks has been on the discount of a deliberate price range cap, different rules aimed toward enhancing the game have shaped a part of a ‘New Deal’ that has been championed by FIA president Jean Todt.

        • Open Data

      • Programming/Development

        • Dirk Eddelbuettel: #3 T^4: Customizing The Shell

          The third video (following the announcement, the shell colors) one as well as last week’s shell prompt one, is up in the stil new T^4 series of video lightning talks with tips, tricks, tools, and toys. Today we cover customizing the shell some more.

        • Why slowing new feature development can be the best way to maintain an open source project

          John Byrd is credited with a great statement: “Good programmers write good code. Great programmers write no code. Zen programmers delete code.” It’s perhaps an overstatement, but the idea behind it is spot on: As a code base accumulates cruft over time, great engineers will invest the time necessary to strip the code of technical debt. As DJ Walker-Morgan once put it, “Deleted lines [of code] are the final burn down of the ground where tech debt built.”

          [...]

          We’ve seen this same principle applied in other projects. Apache Cassandra is a good, recent example. In talking with Cassandra insiders, there was a point when stability took precedence in the Cassandra community, with Apple, Netflix, and other big users of Cassandra joining forces on this goal as users got stuck on version 3.11.

          As cool as it sounds to issue yet another release, Cassandra users were tiring of revalidating their databases every two months when a new release hit. The Cassandra 4.0 effort has been a broad-based, community effort to get the Cassandra house in order.

        • The End is Near for Zend Server Basic PHP

          Zend Server Basic, the free PHP runtime used by thousands of IBM i shops, will cease being offered starting in July 2021. That’s the word from Perforce, the company that now owns Zend and its lineup of PHP tools and technologies. The replacement, of course, is the new community edition of PHP that became available via RPM in late 2019.

          Starting in 2006, Zend Technology began to develop a special version of its PHP runtime for IBM i, which was then called i5/OS. This offering, dubbed Zend Core for i5/OS, provided a familiar way for users of the iSeries server (as it was known back then) to partake of the digital bounty that was (and is) the PHP language and the estimated 10,000 software applications that ran on it at the time.

          While nobody knows for sure how many IBM i (System i, iSeries, AS/400, etc.) shops adopted Zend Core for i5/OS and its follow-ons and continued to use it to power their PHP applications on the box over the years, the number is almost certainly currently measured in the thousands. Back in 2006, IT Jungle reported that, according to Zend, there had been thousands of downloads of the beta of Zend Core for i5/OS just four months after it was released in March 2006.

        • PestPHP Released as Open-Source

          Console legend Nuno Maduro has open-sourced Pest, an elegant PHP testing framework that focuses on simplicity.

        • Seungha Yang: Unfortunately GStreamer 1.17

          Unfortunately GStreamer 1.17 is a development version and any binary/installer is not officially released. But you can build it using Cerbero which is a project for packaging GStreamer framework, or simpler way is that you might be able to try gst-build, that’s a meta-project to build GStreamer mostly used for development purpose.

        • Python

          • Python 3.8.3 : A brief introduction to the Celery python package.
          • How to Import Historical Stock Prices Into A Python Script Using the IEX Cloud API

            Python is one of the world’s most popular programming languages.

            Specifically, Python for finance is arguably the world’s most popular language-application pair. This is because of the robust ecosystem of packages and libraries that makes it easy for developers to build robust financial applications.

          • How to create and manipulate tar archives using Python
          • What I think is good and bad

            I’m in the #python IRC channel on Freenode a lot. The people there are often quite opinionated. Julian had the idea of processing the logs to see what we thought was good, and what was bad, using sophisticated sentiment analysis.

          • How the End of Life for Open Source Python 2 Affects Enterprises
          • Test and Code: 114: The Python Software Foundation (PSF) Board Elections – Ewa Jodlowska / Christopher Neugebauer

            “The mission of the Python Software Foundation is to promote, protect, and advance the Python programming language, and to support and facilitate the growth of a diverse and international community of Python programmers.”

            That’s a lot of responsibility, and to that end, the PSF Board Directors help out quite a bit.

            If you want to be a part of the board, you can. There’s an election coming up right around the corner and you gotta get your nomination in by May 31. You can also join the PSF if you want to vote for who gets to be part of the board.

          • Consistent Hashing

            Consistent hashing is a hashing technique that performs really well when operated in a dynamic environment where the distributed system scales up and scales down frequently. The core concept of Consistent Hashing was introduced in the paper Consistent Hashing and RandomTrees: Distributed Caching Protocols for Relieving Hot Spots on the World Wide Web but it gained popularity after the famous paper introducing DynamoDB – Dynamo: Amazon’s Highly Available Key-value Store. Since then the consistent hashing gained traction and found a ton of use cases in designing and scaling distributed systems efficiently. The two famous examples that exhaustively use this technique are Bit Torrent, for their peer-to-peer networks and Akamai, for their web caches. In this article we dive deep into the need of Consistent Hashing, the internals of it, and more importantly along the way implement it using arrays and Binary Search.

        • Java

          • Hazelcast CTO: 25 years of Java, welcome to the data-driven 3rd act

            It’s easy to forget how important Java – celebrating its 25th birthday – has been.

            Before Java, computing was a place of siloed and proprietary clients and servers. Java was more than just a programming language – it was essentially a platform for building a wide range of applications. Java delivered a consistent and efficient programming experience for developers combined with write-once-run-anywhere portability.

            Today, we see that in containerisation and cloud.

            Java is poised to begin its third act – supporting cloud-native, data-intensive applications in analytics and Artificial Intelligence and IoT on 5G. That’s because Java’s foundations have continued to develop along with those first principles of developer productivity – simpler to build, more efficient code – with platform scale and performance.

            Not, that Java’s data destiny was manifest – Java’s had wobbles.

    • Standards/Consortia

  • Leftovers

    • Health/Nutrition

      • Want to understand goodwill? Ask the cat, dog, rat and rabbit

        On the high street in my town there is a store front that has been the site of numerous attempts by restaurateurs and other food types to establish a successful business. Back in the 1990’s, Starbucks tried to do so at the site but without luck. Others followed, but ultimately all were doomed to close. Still, several years ago, yet another enterprise tried its luck, called “Borochov 88.”

        [...]

        To the contrary, Sarah’s Place enjoyed a firmer basis to enjoy goodwill after the move. That the high street relocation was located only 600 yards from the original site was attractive to “rabbits” and maybe even “cats”, while the identity of the owners at the new site would draw “dogs”. Here, as well, while the custom of “rats” was welcome, they could not be relied upon as a material basis for goodwill at the new site.

        So, Kat readers, the next time that are asked to opine on goodwill, you could do worse than remember what cats, dogs, rats and rabbits can teach us. Animal Farm anyone?

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Pseudo-Open Source

          • Openwashing

            • Radisys bows new PON platform for fiber rollouts of all sizes

              The Open Networking Foundation’s SDN Enabled Broadband Access (SEBA) platform describes how to assemble a collection of open source components to build a virtualized PON network to deliver residential broadband and mobile backhaul. SEBA uses a disaggregated white-box approach for building next-generation access networks by using open source.

              With SEBA, functionality that traditionally ran on chassis-based OLTs and on BNG routers is run in the cloud while the hardware is a collection of white-box optical line terminals (OLTs), switches and servers. SEBA blends together the collection of open source hardware and software into a comprehensive platform that exposes northbound FCAPS interfaces, making it easier to integrate a SEBA POD with an operator’s OSS/BSS system.

            • FOLIO Library Services Platform Launches Fameflower Release

              FOLIO, a community collaboration to develop an open source Library Services Platform (LSP), has launched the Fameflower Release. The FOLIO Fameflower Release is the sixth in a series of named releases that define the features and functionality of the open source LSP and represents a significant list of workflow features for library staff.

          • Entrapment (Microsoft GitHub)

        • Security

          • Josh Bressers: Episode 198 – Good advice or bad advice? Hang up, look up, and call back

            Josh and Kurt talk about the Krebs blog post titled “When in Doubt: Hang Up, Look Up, & Call Back”. In the world of security there isn’t a lot of actionable advice, it’s worth discussing if something like this will work, or ever if it’s the right way to handle these situations.

          • The 50 Best Linux Hardening Security Tips: A Comprehensive Checklist

            Linux powers the majority of the web and a considerable amount of workstations around the globe. One of the primary reasons behind the ever-growing popularity of Linux and BSD systems is their rock-solid policies regarding security. Linux systems are inherently hard to crack due to their underlying design principles. However, no system is unbreakable, and if you don’t harden your workstation or Linux server on par with the latest standards, you’re likely to fall victim to various types of attacks and/or data breach. That’s why we have outlined 50 Linux hardening tips that will help you increase your server security to the next level.

          • Fear, Uncertainty, Doubt/Fear-mongering/Dramatisation

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • Apple whistleblower goes public over ‘lack of action’
            • Confidentiality

              • Military Personnel Exposed By Unlikely Social Media App

                Untappd is not alone — almost all social media activity can be exploited in some way. In January 2018 analysts exposed how the fitness app Strava could be used to unmask military personnel. These included those working in sensitive locations such as bases in Afghanistan and Africa.

                The Bellingcat article is only scratching the surface. The worrying truth is that the Information Age provides many more ways to build up a picture of your enemy than was possible just 30 years ago. Military planners cannot assume that their forces’ movements are not being tracked, wholesale.

    • Freedom of Information/Freedom of the Press

      • Episode 24: Anthony Slide & Ben Wizner

        Anthony Slide is one of the most important filmographers and archivists in the history of cinema. Ben Wizner is a noted first amendment lawyer who represents Edward Snowden, a fugitive famously charged under the espionage act. He is the Director of ACLU Speech, Privacy, and Technology Project Anthony Slide and Randy share their love of film and Slide displays his encyclopedic knowledge of film history. Central to the show is a discussion of one of the most interesting and painful stories of film history—the case of the prosecution of the producer Robert Goldstein, who like Julian Assange and Edward Snowden was charged under the espionage act. Goldstein’s story is of a filmmaker caught in a political morass because of the timing of the film’s release. Ben Wizner presents a clear and frightening history of the Espionage Act and its political underpinning as a tool to silence dissent.

    • Monopolies

      • To fix social media, we need to introduce digital socialism

        Proprietary social media networks need to be transformed into local and global digital commons.

        [...]

        Various scholars have put forward two main ideas to break up Big Social Media, neither of which can sufficiently accomplish their goals.

        The first one seeks to dismantle past mergers and acquisitions. Facebook, for example, bought up Instagram and WhatsApp years ago, and is now seeking to integrate all three platforms into a seamless communications network.

        Scholars like Tim Wu, Sarah Miller, and Matt Stoller have suggested breaking Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp into three separate companies. They hope these companies would then compete for customers, which would compel them to treat users with respect.

        Yet there is no good reason to believe this would do much for privacy and competition itself does not necessarily curb harmful behaviour. Even if these companies are broken up, given that their business model is based on serving ads and the exploitation of user data, they would have no serious incentive to change their behaviour.

        Furthermore, these companies are able to monetise surveillance because the data is running through their platforms, and they force people to be a part of their networks in order to interact with their friends and family. For example, a user who does not like Facebook’s privacy practices can leave for another network, but then they have to convince their friends to join them.

        The second idea proposes a solution to this problem: make social networks interoperate. Social media platforms would be forced to allow members of one network to interact with members of another. For example, a Facebook user would be able to post a comment under a YouTube video while logged into Facebook, and vice-versa. Users’ data would also be “portable” so they could move their profile to a different platform.

        Interoperability exists in other communications services, such as telephone networks and email.

        However, the “competition through interoperability” antitrust proposal is deeply flawed.

        The reason Big Social Media firms are able to raid everyone’s data and mistreat users is that they are centralised, cloud-based intermediaries. If I want to share a photo with you, I first upload it to, say, Facebook’s servers, and then you download it from Facebook’s servers. The user experience is then determined by Facebook’s network software.

      • Patents

        • G3/19: An End To The Saga…

          On 14th May the Enlarged Board of Appeal issued its opinion on the questions referred in case G3/19, otherwise known as the ‘Pepper’ case1. HGF have been following the case with interest, and attended the original Board of Appeal hearing which lead to the referral, our last update can be found here.

          The opinion marks the potential end to a saga which has created legal uncertainty in the field of plant and animal breeding and selection for over a decade. The issues began back in 2007 when the first referral to the Enlarged Board was made on the subject. This case became known as the infamous ‘Broccoli I’ decision of G2/072 and the subsequent related decision of ‘Tomatoes I’ of G1/083 . Enlarged Board of Appeal decisions usually produce final and binding decisions on issues of legal interpretation, however the tale of broccoli and tomatoes rumbled on to create two more subsequent referrals; G2/12 and G2/134 were consolidated and the decisions were issued together in 2015. These decisions, however, created controversy in that they essentially stated that the exclusion of essentially biological processes for the production of plants in Article 53(b) EPC does not have a negative effect on the allowability of a product claim directed to plants or plant material produced from an essentially biological process.

          Although welcomed by some, this decision seemed rather incongruous in forbidding claims covering processes of production of plants and animals with essentially biologically steps, yet allowing the claims to the products produced from such processes, thereby allowing companies to work around the decision. The decision furthermore raised concerns as to whether the patent system was essentially allowing patents to cover varieties and breeds of plant, thereby encroaching on Plant Breeders Rights. Following the decision, the European Parliament expressed concern that the decision could spark more patents on natural traits of plants introduced in new varieties and called on the European Commission (EC) to review the matter, which it subsequently did. The EC issued a notice 5 in 2016 stating that it could not be interpreted from the drafters’ original intention when preparing the EPC to allow product claims to plants or animals produced by essentially biological processes. This strongly indicated that the EC believed decisions G2/12 and G2/13 to be incorrect and contrary to the Biotech Directive, but the notice was non-binding on the EPO. Nevertheless, the Administrative Council of the EPO, under pressure from lobbying groups, especially in the Netherlands, felt the need to act and eventually did so6 by amending Rule 28 EPC to add part (2) stating that:

          ‘Under Article 53(b), European patents shall not be granted in respect of plants or animals exclusively obtained by means of an essentially biological process.’

          Although the AC intended to clarify the issue, this direct amendment of the EPC was regarded by many as ultra vires given that two Enlarged Board of Appeal “G” decisions, regarded as the highest authority within the EPO, were already in place stating that such claims were patentable. The rules of the EPC were now in direct conflict with the G decisions. Given that the G decisions were issued in 2015, and the rule change was implemented only two years afterwards in summer 2017, it was only a matter of time before a case came up which contained relevant claims covering plants produced by essentially biological processes. That case was the ‘Pepper’ case filed by Syngenta, (one of the applicants on the original broccoli filing), which eventually gave rise to the Board of Appeal decision T1063/18 7 and the referral G3/19.

        • Bans Patents On Plants And Animals

          Plants and animals that are produced only by “essentially biological processes” are not patentable, the European Patent Office has ruled, a decision that has been hailed as a victory against agribusiness giants while prompting a warning that “existing loopholes” still need to be closed.

          In a 70-page opinion Thursday, the EPO’s Enlarged Board of Appeal held that the European Patent Convention, which governs patents issued by the office, excludes plants and animals that are “exclusively obtained by means of an essentially biological process.”

        • Software Patents

          • FCBA Program on Artificial Intelligence

            The Federal Circuit Bar Association (FCBA) will be offering a remote program entitled “Artificial Intelligence: Challenges and Opportunities” on May 28, 2020 from 1:00 to 2:00 pm (EST). Patrick Keane of Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney PC will moderate a panel consisting of Uren Chen of Qualcomm Inc.; Ron Dimock of Gowling WLG; Laura Sheridan of Google LLC; and Coke Stewart, Acting Chief of Staff and Senior Policy Advisor, U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. The panel will discuss the role of Al as Industrial Revolution 4.0 unfolds, including the key challenges and opportunities presented by Al within the tech community, how the legal community is evolving in response, particularly with regard to issues of inventorship, patentability, and enforcement, and the role of Al in the current COVID crisis.

      • Copyrights

        • John McAfee Admits Ghost ‘Copy-Pasted’ From PIVX, Threatens Lawsuits

          Earlier this week, PIVX developers claimed that the Ghost white paper was plagiarized from an outdated 2018 PIVX white paper. According to them, “At least 20 of the 26 total pages” of the Ghost whitepaper “contain material directly plagiarized from the 2018 PIVX whitepaper.”

          At the time, a representative for Ghost explained to Cointelegraph that their starting code base “is a forked version of PIVX,” although Ghost has allegedly “done a lot of improvements” to the code.

          PIVX, in turn, argued that while their product can be used “as long as copyright credits are maintained in the code,” their whitepaper is not open-source and “was fully copyrighted in 2018.”

          [...]

          PIVX is an open-source protocol that originally forked from DASH. It plans to implement zk-SNARKs-based privacy protocol created by Zcash (ZEC), another privacy coin, closer to its launch in Q4 2020. Ghost, on the other hand, is scheduled to take off next month — and its white paper also mentions zk-SNARKs, potentially as a result of borrowing from PIVX.

          “We have a suspicion that the GHOST team may not have been aware that PIVX have not yet implemented it [zk-SNARKs] when they published their white paper,” a PIVX spokesperson suggested in a conversation with Cointelegraph.

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