06.10.20

Links 10/6/2020: PineTab, MuQSS 0.202, LVFS 1.2.0, Endless OS 3.8.3

Posted in News Roundup at 5:49 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • SpaceX rockets run on the same software as your average joe Android smartphone

      SpaceX engineers have explained in a reddit post that if you use an Android phone, you are probably unknowingly familiar with code that makes SpaceX rockets fly. SpaceX rockets actually mimic technology that millions of users use everyday on their Android devices, including Chromium and a Linux based operating system. The historic Demo 2 launch, which happened just a few days back on one of the most advanced spaceships in human history, and was powered by technology that exists in your smartphone.

      Now, we are all familiar with the straight-out-of-sci-fi Crew Dragon touch screen panel that has garnered so much acclaim from people all over the globe. That touch screen panel employs Chromium, Google’s open-source foundation for the Chrome web browser.

      “We liked all the modern features that comes with browsers out of the box,” said Sofian Hnaide, a developer who worked on the Crew Dragon display technology. This also gave SpaceX the opportunity to hire developers who are already familiar with the type of programming involved.

    • China’s Computers Run on Microsoft Windows: Are They Vulnerable to US Pressure?

      As tension grows between China and the United States, there is worry in Beijing that the conflict could end up further restricting Chinese access to American technology.

      Of foremost concern is that despite decades of effort, China has yet to build a homegrown operating system good enough to replace Microsoft Windows. “Our operating system market is dominated by U.S. companies such as Microsoft, Google and Apple,” a recent report by state-run Xinhua News Agency said. “To fundamentally solve the problem of ‘being choked in [the] neck’, creating a domestic operating system and supporting software and hardware ecosystem is a must.”

      To be fair, China is not alone. Other countries including Russia, Germany and South Korea have been trying to develop their own operating systems. But none of them have gotten very far yet.

      Washington has already targeted China’s technology vulnerabilities. The U.S. Commerce Department has banned Huawei from Google Android and cut off the Chinese tech giant from foreign chip manufacturers in May 2019 after adding it to the Export Administration Regulations Entity List. Just last week, 33 Chinese firms and institutions, including the Shanghai-listed software giant Qihoo 360 Technology, were added to an economic blacklist for activities that threaten American national security or foreign policy interests.

    • SpaceX Starlink Satellites ‘Run Linux Computers In Space’

      SpaceX thinks of its network of Starlink broadband satellites as akin to a cluster of servers in a data centre receiving frequent software updates for issues such as performance and security, the company has said.

      Speaking with Reddit users at a question-and-answer session, the company’s director of Starlink software Matt Monson said the constellation requires “a ton of software to make it work”.

    • The Linux Setup – Emma Heffernan, Student

      Initially, I always used Linux through virtual machines for capture the flag competitions or minor tasks. While lockdown had us caught up indoors, I decided it was the right time to experiment and develop my command-line skills. While my laptop is primarily Windows, I ended up running Linux Mint 19.3 on my desktop. Since the move, I can see the dust gathering on my laptop! Nothing against Windows or other operating systems, but the reasons I use Linux are for freedom, security, good performance, and high stability.

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • PineTab 10.1″ Linux tablet Launched for $99.99 with UBPorts OS

        As expected, Pine64 PineTab Linux tablet with Allwinner A64 processor, 2GB RAM, and a 10.1″ touchscreen display has just launched for $99.99 or $119.98 with a detachable backlit keyboard on Pine64 Store. Note those are pre-orders with shipping scheduled for the end of July.

        PineTab won’t shatter performance records with a quad-core Cortex-A53 processor with Mali-400MP GPU, 2GB RAM, 64GB eMMC flash, but it’s one of the rare Linux tablets on the market, and certainly the most affordable. The tablet offers a decent set of features too with a 10.1″ 720p capacitive display support for M.2 SATA SSD, Mini HDMI output, front-facing, and rear cameras, built-in WiFi and optional 4G LTE via the M.2 socket. It also comes with a 6,000 mAh battery that should be good for many hours.

      • PineTab, the $99 Linux Tablet, is Now Available to Order

        This price point is a little higher than the $79 figure Pine64, the company behind the PinePhone Linux phone and PineBook Pro laptop, had been aiming for.

        But there are some modest improvements to the overall fit, form and function of the Linux-powered slate to account for the modest price rise.

        Plus, buyers who pay an extra $20 can get a PineTab complete with a matching magnetic backlit keyboard and touchpad folio.

      • Hurry up! $100 PineTab Linux Tablet is Finally Available for Pre-order

        PineTab was planned to be made available back in 2019— however, PinePhone and Pinebook production was prioritized over it. Also, due to the factory lines closing for COVID-19 pandemic, the plan for PineTab was further postponed.

        Finally, you will be happy to know that you can now pre-order the PineTab Linux tablet for just $100.

      • Linux-based PineTab tablet launches at $100, adds M.2 slot

        Pine64 has opened $100 preorders for its open-spec, 10.1-inch PineTab tablet with optional $20 keyboard. The tablet runs Ubuntu Touch on an Allwinner A64 with 2GB RAM, 64GB eMMC, mini-HDMI, 2x USB, dual cams, and an M.2 slot.

        The PineTab tablet that Pine64 announced in Feb. 2019 as part of an ambitious roadmap of open source Linux products, has finally reached preorder, with shipments due in at the end of July. As Pine64 had promised in a May 15 blog post, the tablet sells for $100 or $120 for the laptop-like version with the magnetically attached keyboard and trackpad. Shipping, however, costs $28 so the final price would be $128 or $148.

      • $100 PineTab Linux tablet is available for pre-order

        The PineTab is a 10.1 inch tablet with a 1280 x 800 pixel display, a quad-core processor, 2GB of RAM and 64GB of storage. And while those specs aren’t exactly exciting, there are two things that make the PineTab stand out from most other tablets on the market today…

      • PineTab Linux Tablet Is Now Available for Pre-Order, Powered by Ubuntu Touch

        The wait is finally over, the PineTab pre-orders are now open for everyone and you can get your hands on the latest Linux tablet from PINE64 for only $119.98 USD.

        Powered by the latest Ubuntu Touch OS from UBports, which features the Lomiri GUI, the PineTab features a beautiful 10.1-inch HD IPS capacitive touchscreen with 16.7M colors, 1280×800 pixels resolution and 16:10 aspect ratio.

      • Hyper-threading disabled for VMs (Linux) on Chrome OS

        Remember, more than two years ago, when Intel’s CPUs were exposed to a critical security flaw that practically turned the PC industry on its head? No? No worries. You aren’t alone. Still, the severity of the Meltdown and Spectre vulnerabilities was real and the potential harm they carried was of legitimate concern. Thankfully, most Chrome OS devices were patched before the issues were made public and to my knowledge, an attack on a Chromebook was never realized in the wild. While Spectre and Meltdown are distance memories for most, it appears that Chrome OS has not escaped the long-term effects of such vulnerabilities.

      • Julian Andres Klode: Review: Chromebook Duet

        Sporting a beautiful 10.1” 1920×1200 display, the Lenovo IdeaPad Duet Chromebook or Duet Chromebook, is one of the latest Chromebooks released, and one of the few slate-style tablets, and it’s only about 300 EUR (300 USD). I’ve had one for about 2 weeks now, and here are my thoughts.

        [...]

        The Chromebook Duet runs Chrome OS, and comes with access to Android apps using the play store (and sideloading in dev mode) and access to full Linux environments powered by LXD inside VMs.

        The screen which has 1920×1200 is scaled to a ridiculous 1080×675 by default which is good for being able to tap buttons and stuff, but provides next to no content. Scaling it to 1350×844 makes things more balanced.

        The Linux integration is buggy. Touches register in different places than where they happened, and the screen is cut off in full screen extremetuxracer, making it hard to recommend for such uses.

        Android apps generally work fine. There are some issues with the back gesture not registering, but otherwise I have not found issues I can remember.

        [...]

        The Chromebook Duet or IdeaPad Duet Chromebook is a decent tablet that is built well above its price point. It’s lackluster performance and DRM woes make it hard to give a general recommendation, though. It’s not a good laptop.

        I can see this as the perfect note taking device for students, and as a cheap tablet for couch surfing, or as your on-the-go laptop replacement, if you need it only occasionally.

        I cannot see anyone using this as their main laptop, although I guess some people only have phones these days, so: what do I know?

        I can see you getting this device if you want to tinker with Linux on ARM, as Chromebooks are quite nice to tinker with, and a tablet is super nice.

      • Well, well, well. Look who just got Linux apps in Beta

        For months, Chromium developers have been working the the ‘kernelnext’ project that intends to bring Linux app support to older devices. Despite the number of Chromebooks that have been added to the list, one particular family of devices is still missing out on the Crostini train. Intel’s Skylake CPUs were at the core of a massive evolution for the Chrome OS landscape and the small handful of Skylake devices that were made are still popular among a lot of users. I’m speaking specifically about the ASUS Chromebook C302 and Samsung Chromebook Pro convertibles that ushered in the era of premium 2-in-1 Chrome OS devices.

      • Thanks to Linux: we are back with a new look and new adventures

        My switch to Linux improved my programming and technical skills, where with every day I spend on it, I learn something new. Moreover, My reading about open source Develop my blogging skills. Noting that the template coding and customization was done using open source software ( Kate text editor, Atom, Firefox inspector…).

        I would like to take this opportunity to personally thank everyone who contributed from far or near to making this a reality.

    • Server

      • Organizations tackle data center operations during COVID-19

        Many organizations now wonder how their admins can manage a data center they can’t physically access. This causes IT teams to turn to remote infrastructure management.

        “Many of our customers are not even letting people into the data centers, which really boosts the demand for our remote monitored, outlet switched and environmental monitoring solutions. This includes understanding if there are any temperature [requirements] and that the proper humidity levels are maintained,” Nicholson said.

        For data center providers that must have essential personnel on-site, top fixes include plans to cross-train admins and shift schedules. Cross-training allows admins to address issues they were previously unfamiliar with or unable to troubleshoot; this is essential for operations as providers must limit how many people they can have in the data center at once. To be successful, organizations must have effective training policies and onboarding procedures in place.

        “During a time like this, there is certainly more risk for those who don’t plan and are thus unable to execute at the speed that they need to. For example, if a data center provider needs to bring on new staff quickly, whether it’s to perform critical IT maintenance or simply move equipment around, they need to have good onboarding procedures in place. Human error, through either bad procedures or bad training, all comes to light in this type of situation,” Kirby said.

      • Talk about a control plane… US Air Force says upcoming B-21 stealth bomber will use Kubernetes

        An assistant secretary of the United States Air Force appears to have revealed that its forthcoming B-21 stealth bomber will use container-orchestration tool Kubernetes.

        The B-21 is expected to fly in 2025 and to have intercontinental range and nuke capability, making it a significant strike weapon. It’s touted as a likely replacement for America’s heavy bomber fleet.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • mintCast 336.5 – Taking Control

        I’ve always been looking at non-Microsoft systems. Started with Apple IIe and then Macs while young. Linux specifically I’ve had a couple of them… In college we had Sun Microsystems – Solaris in the computer labs, running StarOffice. Later in college my roommate had RedHat – but he lost me when he said “look I can change the speed on the CPU fan”.

        Then running only Windows until early 2019 when researching what to do with Windows 7 end of life. Windows 10 was not an option – update during client meeting.

      • LHS Episode #350: Another One Bites the Dust

        Come in, come in! You’re here for the 350th installment of Linux in the Ham Shack. In this short-format show, we talk about the cancellation of yet another big hamfest, a new organization for amateur radio on the ISS, the demise of a well-known SDR platform, Space-X, Creative Commons music, security apps for mobile devices and much more. Thank you for listening and have an excellent week.

      • The Little Distro That Could | LINUX Unplugged 357

        The lightweight distro that stole our hearts, the four of us each try out a different contender and come away with what we think will be the leanest and meanest distribution for your PC.

        Special Guests: Drew DeVore and Jill Bryant Ryniker.

    • Kernel Space

      • Char/Misc Additions For Linux 5.8 Headlined By Intel / Habana Labs Gaudi Support

        The char/misc pull request for Linux 5.8 is big at nearly one hundred thousand lines of new code.

        The char/misc pull sent in by Greg Kroah-Hartman on Sunday is already merged and includes:

        - Habana Labs Gaudi accelerator support, the AI training accelerator and complementing the company’s Goya AI inference accelerator that is already backed by this mainline kernel driver. The Gaudi AI accelerator support has been a long time coming but is now all wired up with the open-source kernel driver in Linux 5.8. Habana Labs was recently acquired by Intel to bolster their AI efforts.

      • F2FS Improvements Sent In For Linux 5.8 With LZO-RLE, New Compression Knobs

        Jaegeuk Kim has sent in the Flash-Friendly File-System (F2FS) improvements for the Linux 5.8 kernel.

        The prominent new addition for F2FS in this next version of the Linux kernel is adding LZO-RLE to the available compression formats supported by this file-system. LZO Run-Length Encoding aims to offer similar compression ratios to LZO but with higher performance after the LZO-RLE implementation was contributed to the kernel last year by Arm.

        F2FS LZO-RLE support has been in the works for several months and comes after F2FS added Zstd support and other compression methods to this flash focused file-system.

      • Linux 5.8 Brings Boost Support To CPPC CPUFreq Driver

        The ACPI-defined Collaborative Processor Performance Control (CPPC) CPUFreq driver will support “boosting” to the optimal performance level with the Linux 5.8 kernel.

        Collaborative Processor Performance Control ACPI specification is a standardized mechanism for describing abstract performance scales and a means of being able to request higher/lower performance levels and measuring per-CPU performance. The Linux kernel for a while has offered the ACPI CPPC CPUFreq driver for making use of this standard on supported systems — primarily to date being Arm systems. AMD last year proposed their own CPPC driver for Zen 2 Linux systems but there has been no activity on that front since then. In any case, Huawei has now plumbed “boost” support into the generic CPPC CPUFreq driver.

      • linux-5.7-ck1, MuQSS version 0.202 for linux-5.7

        Announcing a new -ck release, 5.7-ck1 with the latest version of the Multiple Queue Skiplist Scheduler, version 0.202. These are patches designed to improve system responsiveness and interactivity with specific emphasis on the desktop, but configurable for any workload.

      • Linux 5.7-ck1 Released With MuQSS 0.202 For Improved System Responsiveness

        While Linux 5.6-ck1 was much delayed due to Dr. Con Kolivas being busy designing COVID-19 equipment, that work has settled down and the retired anaesthetist is out with his newest Linux patches for improving system responsiveness.

        Linux 5.7-ck1 paired with MuQSS 0.202 has the latest patches aiming to improve system responsiveness and interactivity particularly for desktop systems.

      • Graphics Stack

        • Sienna Cichlid Support For RadeonSI Merged Into Mesa 20.2

          The previously reported on Sienna Cichlid support for AMD’s RadeonSI OpenGL driver has finished its quick review process and now merged for Mesa 20.2.

          It was just a few days ago the Sienna Cichlid patches were posted for the RadeonSI Gallium3D driver, a week after the kernel patches were posted for this new codename GPU that appears to definitely be Navi 2. With the Sienna Cichlid enablement for RadeonSI being quite small thanks to largely re-using the existing Navi/GFX10 code paths, the review went quick and as of yesterday the support was merged.

        • Mesa 20.1.1 Released With The Open-Source Driver Stack Being In Good Shape

          Mesa 20.1 was released at the end of May while now Mesa 20.1.1 is out as the first point release to this Q2’2020 driver series.

          Mesa 20.1.1 has over four dozen fixes that accumulated over the past two weeks, but for the most part they are minor fixes. There are Intel i965 fixes for Unreal Engine 4 games, enabling RADV zero vRAM for all VKD3D games plus DOOM Eternal, fixing the exporting of GEM handles for the Intel OpenGL drivers, VK_GOOGLE_user_type support for ANV and RADV, and other random fixes. But overall nothing too major.

        • Open-Source 3D/Compute Finally Materializing For NVIDIA Volta / Turing GPUs

          The open-source Nouveau kernel driver has supported Volta GPUs for some time and since Linux 5.6 also supported open-source initialization of Turing GPUs for hardware acceleration. But missing for Volta and Turing has been the Mesa-side support for enabling 3D (OpenGL) and compute (OpenCL) functionality on these newer GPUs. That is finally changing with pending Mesa patches.

    • Benchmarks

      • RdRand Performance As Bad As ~3% Original Speed With CrossTalk/SRBDS Mitigation

        Following today’s disclosure by Intel of the CrossTalk/SRBDS vulnerability that is MDS-based and vulnerable across physical cores with affected instructions, Intel released new CPU microcode to mitigate the most prone/significant instructions. I’ve been benchmarking the impact of this new microcode on multiple systems and will have a full report tonight or tomorrow morning… But here is a look specifically at the look at the impact on the RdRand performance.

        RDRAND, RDSEED, and EGETKEY are the instructions currently being mitigated with the new microcode. As explained in the earlier article, mitigating CrossTalk involves locking the entire memory bus before updating the staging buffer and unlocking it after the contents have been cleared. This locking and serialization now involved for those instructions is very brutal on the performance, but thankfully most real-world workloads shouldn’t be making too much use of these instructions.

      • Benchmarking The Updated Intel CPU Microcode For SRBDS / CrossTalk Mitigation



        Following yesterday’s disclosure of CrossTalk / SRBDS after a nearly two year embargo period for this Special Register Buffer Data Sampling vulnerability, I have been running benchmarks on multiple systems for the past nearly 24 hours. Here are some preliminary data points for both synthetic and real-world workloads on various Intel CPUs before/after mitigating SRBDS with the updated Intel microcode.

        With the embargo lift yesterday, Intel published new CPU microcode for affected CPUs from Haswell through Coffeelake/Whiskeylake and Skylake X. Intel has some data that Ivy Bridge is affected too, but there has not been any new Ivybridge microcode mitigations we have seen yet.

    • Applications

      • The 20 Best Linux Screenshot Tools: The Experts’ Recommendation

        There are a wide variety of Linux screen capture tools, both graphical and console-based. We have selected the picks for this guide based on their usage and popularity among Linux folks. You should be able to choose the best screen capture tool once you have completed this guide.

      • Shutter Encoder Is A Feature-Packed Audio / Video Transcoder

        Shutter Encoder is a free and open source media transcoder for Windows and macOS, which was recently made available for Linux.

        The tool can convert images, videos and audio files to many formats, burn DVDs, download web videos, and it also incorporates some basic video editing features, like replacing the audio of video files, cutting and cropping videos with a preview, and more.

        Shutter Encoder uses Java along with various tools under the hood, like 7za, VLC, FFmpeg, ExifTool, MKVMerge (part of MKVToolNix), MediaInfo, DVDAuthor, youtube-dl and more.

      • Use Espanso Text Expander To Save Time And Increase Productivity (Linux, Windows, macOS)

        Espanso is a free and open source text expander written in Rust, available for Linux, Windows and macOS. It uses a file-based configuration, with no graphical user interface (it has a minimal tray icon on Windows and macOS). It features support for most applications, custom scripts, code snippets, Emoji, and it can be extended through extra packages.

      • Deluge review

        Deluge is a free torrent client that has gained immense popularity among torrent fans recently. One of the most potent BitTorrent clients which is open source and provides cross-platform functionality, it offers great performance, security, and does well in terms of features too.

      • man-pages-5.07 is released

        I’ve released man-pages-5.07. The release tarball is available on kernel.org. The browsable online pages can be found on man7.org. The Git repository for man-pages is available on kernel.org.

        This release resulted from patches, bug reports, reviews, and comments from more than 80 contributors. The release includes more than 380 commits that change more than 380 pages. One new page was added in this release, and one page was removed.

      • The 10 Best Parental Control Software for Linux System in 2020

        Moreover, they are always curious about different matters, and that could lead them to distract from their path. If you think that your child is consuming only kids friendly content, excessive screen time is a serious matter that you should be concerned about. These are the cases when the parental control and web filtering software come in handy.

        They allow you to control their screen time, content type, accessible websites, and many other aspects to protect them against distractions. Linux comes with some great parental control settings, just like any other major operating system. But if you want more advanced controls, then there are some Linux parental control tools you should check out.

        [...]

        Choosing the best software for any specific task is the most confusing part. Besides, there are both paid and free tools available on the internet. In terms of free tools, you can have some trials and errors to meet the sweet spot. But before spending money on software, you should be well aware of the functionalities. Here we have enlisted 10 Linux parental control software that we think are the bests to protect your beloved kids. One of them should meet your very own requirements. So, check them out.

    • Instructionals/Technical

    • Games

      • Puppygames classic ‘Titan Attacks!’ gets a Collectors USB Cassette

        Huey Games in partnership with Puppygames are offering a very fancy looking collectors set for Titan Attacks! that’s on Kickstarter and it looks wonderful.

        This is the sixth in the series of collectors editions that Huey Games have done, with previous titles getting the treatment being: Hyper Sentinel, Droid Assault, Ultratron, The Mystery of Woolley Mountain, Bard’s Gold and now Titan Attacks!.

        What’s great about how they do it, is that they include DRM-free builds of the games on the stylish pull-out USB card and they clearly advertise the compatibility for Linux too. It also includes a bunch of extras like soundtracks, artwork and a bunch more. If you’re a collector this is pretty awesome.

      • Brand new point & click The Hand of Glory is out, Linux build in testing

        The Hand of Glory just released after a successful crowdfunding campaign and as promised by the developer, a Linux build is now in testing.

      • Kharon’s Crypt – Even Death May Die launches into Early Access

        Right now it performs well and looks good, the only issue appears to be that gamepads don’t yet work in the Linux version. As always with Early Access, issues are to be expected. We’ll be taken a good look at it once that’s sorted but so far it seems like a great retro adventure.

      • Humble Plug In Digital & Dear Villagers Bundle is live with a few Linux games

        The Humble Plug In Digital & Dear Villagers Bundle has just released now the Cities: Skylines bundle is over, and this one again includes some Linux games.

      • Supraland is leaving GOG after less than a year, dev says sales were low

        Supraland, the colourful and inviting first-person puzzle game from Supra Games is now going to be removed from game store GOG after less than a year being there.

        Looking at the dates: it released on Steam in April 2019, then came to Linux in July that same year and then onto GOG in that same month. Today, June 9 in 2020 the GOG team posted on their forum that Supraland will be delisted from their store at the developer’s request but it will stay in your GOG library. That’s not long to be on a store to then ask for it to be removed, so why?

      • Command & Conquer Remastered Collection Available Now on Steam and Origin; Welcome Back, Commanders

        Command & Conquer Remastered Collection features rebuilt graphics and textures from Lemon Sky Studios with native 4K support. Frank Klepacki, the composer from the original C&C titles, has remastered seven hours of music for the project, which includes over 20 tracks re-recorded with The Tiberian Sons. In addition, Command & Conquer is now one of the first ever major RTS franchises to open source their source code under the GPL. Earlier this week the TiberianDawn.dll and RedAlert.dll and their corresponding source code was released under the GPL version 3.0 license, which will unlock powerful mod support for the Remastered Collection and community projects for years to come.

      • Full motion video mystery thriller ‘Jessika’ coming to Linux

        Jessika is an upcoming full motion video (FMV) mystery adventure, that has you pry into the digital past of Jessika as part of a group that specializes in processing digital footprints of deceased people.

        Quite a unique take on a FMV game, with a sensitive subject too. Jessika committed suicide and it’s up to you to find out why, at the request of their relatives. The developer says ‘What at first seems to be a job like any other quickly develops into a dark drama with twists and turns.’.

        It appears the actual FMV was not done in English, with that being dubbed on top which is a little odd at first glance. Assemble Entertainment, who are publishing it, mentioned that you can adjust it so the FMV is in the native language with subtitles if you prefer.

      • GZDoom 4.4.0 is out and the last to have 32bit builds

        GZDoom, the extremely versatile and very popular open source enhanced Doom game engine has a big new release out and they’re going to drop 32bit support.

        This month GZDoom 4.4.0 went up with a ton of bug fixes and feature enhancements, and they announced along with it that as of GZDoom 4.5.0 there will only be 64 bit versions.

      • Prison Architect – Island Bound DLC release delayed, to come ‘soon’

        Today, Paradox Interactive and Double Eleven announced that the released of the Prison Architect – Island Bound DLC has been delayed with no current date other than ‘soon’.

        It was due to launch tomorrow so it’s quite short notice. So why did they delay it? In their released statement, they mentioned how it’s ‘coming soon’ and we will get more details ‘in the coming days’. Due to the sensitive nature of the content found in Prison Architect and they’re taking that into consideration when promoting the game. They’re adjusting their plans ‘out of respect for the important voices that need to be heard’.

      • Vernal Edge has slick pixel-art and combat where you juggle enemies

        Vernal Edge, a pixel-art action-platformer with a sprinkle of metroidvania looks like it’s going to be a lot of fun. Currently crowdfunding on Kickstarter with 8 days left it’s getting seriously close to the $50,000 goal.

        According to the developer it has a combat system featuring ‘deep technical actions’ inspired by the likes of Devil May Cry, which involve you sort-of juggling your enemies with various moves to take down their HP.

      • My Nine Lives is a free game to raise funds for stray cats

        Here’s your daily dose of something sweet. My Nine Lives from dev Marian Pekár is a free game aimed to create awareness and raise funds to help stray cats.

        Pekár mentioned that their own cat, Max, was originally a stray kitten in bad shape “until fate brought us together”. Not every story has a happy ending and there’s plenty more strays around so Pekár decided to “use my knowledge and invest time and effort to build this game to raise money to help stray cats”. This is where My Nine Lives comes in and they’re hoping it helps in some small way.

        [...]

        The game has both Linux and Windows builds available. While the cause is a noble one, the actual game is quite a sweet idea too. It’s quite simple but it has an interesting idea that could easily be taken further.

      • Steam has a Summer of Pride 2020 sale and event going on

        Summer of Pride, a month-long event featuring LGBTQIA+ streamers playing queer games has launched and developer MidBoss has arranged a Steam event to go with it.

        Weirdly though, I tried on my Steam account and in a private browser and for me the event isn’t listed anywhere on Steam. I only know of it due to being on the email list for MidBoss.

        The event showcases a few upcoming titles like Read Only Memories: NEURODIVER, Lore Finder, N1RV Ann-A: Cyberpunk Bartender Action, Volleyball Heaven and Monster Prom 2: Monster Camp – all of which plan to support Linux as well.

      • The classic Atari game Missile Command has re-imagining out now

        Some of our older readers might might fond memories of Missile Command, an arcade game from Atari released back in 1980. It’s recently been remade with Missile Command: Recharged and it’s out now.

        Missile Command is generally regarded as one of the big classics and this was made in celebration of the original, which will turn 40 next month. Developed by Nickervision Studios (with Atari as publisher), whose previous titles include Super Bit Blaster XL, it released late last month with Linux support so you can try out a re-imagining of the classic right now.

      • Depanneur Nocturne is a short and sweet game about finding a gift

        Depanneur Nocturne is a short, sweet and experimental game from KO_OP about finding a gift for a special someone in a store that’s soon to close.

        KO_OP, founded in 2012, is an artist run and owned studio focused on experimenting with games and interactive art. Depanneur Nocturne is one of the titles created as a result of them creating space for their team to experiment ‘without the demands of a large production’. Depanneur Nocturne is a quirky title with a wonderfully bright art style, aimed to be a ‘single-sitting game’ that’s thoroughly intriguing.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • KDE Plasma 5.19 Released

          The KDE community has released Plasma 5.19, the popular free and open-source desktop environment. “In this release, we have prioritized making Plasma more consistent, correcting and unifying designs of widgets and desktop elements; worked on giving you more control over your desktop by adding configuration options to the System Settings; and improved usability, making Plasma and its components easier to use and an overall more pleasurable experience,” reads the announcement.

        • KDE Plasma 5.19 Released with Improved Wayland Support

          KDE Plasma 5.19 was released today with many new features, stability improvements, and better Wayland support.

        • KDE Plasma 5.19 is here. See What’s New

          The latest KDE Plasma 5.19 desktop environment is available now for download and there’s a bunch of updates to experience. Have a look.

        • First Milestone

          Hello Everyone,

          The first week has been completed with an amazing start for me. I have completed my first milestone i.e sudoku activity. You can see implemented datasets in the below image.

        • Week 1 : GSoC Project Report

          This week corresponds to Week 3 in the planned timeline.

          I created the MVC classes, namely, StoryboardModel, StoryboardDelegate and StoryboardView and implemented a bare bone GUI without much interactivity.

          The StoryboardModel provides an interface to the delegate and view classes to handle the underlying data. The model consists of a list of StoryboardItem objects that correspond to individual storyboard items. Each StoryboardItem object consists of multiple StoryboardChild objects, which store data such as frame number, item name, duration and comment fields. This was set up in this way so as to get a tree based model where the index to a storyboard item is different from the individual data index. Now we can have an index for the storyboard item and also have an index for individual field in it, such as duration or comment field.

        • First alpha release of my project: looking for feedback!

          I’m glad to announce the first alpha of my GSoC 2020 project. For anyone not in the loop, I’m working on integrating Disney’s SeExpr expression language as a new type of Fill Layer.

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • WebKitGTK and WPE now supporting videos in the img tag



          Using videos in the  HTML tag can lead to more responsive web-page loads in most cases. Colin Bendell blogged about this topic, make sure to read his post on the cloudinary website. As it turns out, this feature has been supported for more than 2 years in Safari, but only recently the WebKitGTK and WPEWebKit ports caught up. Read on for the crunchy details or skip to the end of the post if you want to try this new feature.

          As WebKitGTK and WPEWebKit already heavily use GStreamer for their multimedia backends, it was natural for us to also use GStreamer to provide the video ImageDecoder implementation.

          The preliminary step is to hook our new decoder into the MIMETypeRegistry and into the ImageDecoder.cpp platform-agnostic module. This is where the main decoder branches out to platform-specific backends. Then we need to add a new class implementing WebKit’s ImageDecoder virtual interface.

          First you need to implement supportsMediaType(). For this method we already had all the code in place. WebKit scans the GStreamer plugin registry and depending on the plugins available on the target platform, a mime-type cache is built, by the RegistryScanner. Our new image decoder just needs to hook into this component (exposed as singleton) so that we can be sure that the decoder will be used only for media types supported by GStreamer.

        • Nour E-Din ElNhass: Wait, I See Some People

          In my previous post, I wrote about how I started and what kind of preparations were made during the community bounding period, well now we are one week later after the actual GSoC coding period has started and the good news is I can now fetch the EteSync address book successfully and see the contacts in Evolution \o/.

        • Alejandro Piñeiro: v3dv: quick guide to build and run some demos

          Just today it has published a status update of the Vulkan effort for the Raspberry Pi 4, including that we are moving the development of the driver to an open repository. As it is really likely that some people would be interested on testing it, even if it is not complete at all, here you can find a quick guide to compile it, and get some demos running.

        • Philip Withnall: Heap profiling of gnome-software

          The last week has been a fun process of starting to profile gnome-software with the aim of lowering its resource consumption and improving its startup speed. gnome-software is an important part of the desktop on Endless OS, so having it work speedily, especially on resource constrained computers, is important.

          To start with, I’ve looked at gnome-software’s use of heap memory, particularly during startup. While allocating lots of memory on the heap isn’t always a bad thing (caches are a good example of heap allocations being used to speed up a program overall), it’s often a sign of unnecessary work being done. Large heap allocations do take a few tens of milliseconds to be mapped through the allocator too. To do this profiling, I’ve been using valgrind’s massif tool, and massif-visualizer to explore the heap allocations. I could also have used heaptrack, or gobject-list, but they’re tools to explore another time.

        • LVFS 1.2.0
          Hi all,
          
          First, a big thank you: Last week we hit the 16 million downloads mark
          on the LVFS, which is awesome. The number of downloads and also the
          number of OEM uploads is increasing linearly month-on-month and we now
          have over 80 vendors that have uploaded over 4000 firmware files, of
          which ~2000 are available to the public. That's >25GB of firmware!
          
          I've tagged 1.2.0 of the lvfs-website code. Whilst tagged releases for
          webapps are not terribly useful to end-users (as we tend to deploy
          straight away to fix serious bugs) having the release checkpointed
          does make verifying things like corporate deployment upgrades much
          easier. The main thing of note is that we've now moved away from cron
          jobs and are using celery for async operations. From a user point of
          view the only change will be that a lot of the actions that you used
          to wait 5 minutes to complete are now done almost instantly. The
          restrictions on regenerating stable and testing remotes are still in
          place for CDN performance reasons.
          
          If anyone notices anything that's not working correctly (e.g. firmware
          that's not being signed within a few seconds, or tests that get
          "stuck" for more than a few minutes) please let me know. As we scale
          up I'll be adding more workers to the pool so that tasks like the yara
          queries can happen on a completely different (and more powerful)
          machine. The detailed changelog can be found here:
          
          https://lvfs.readthedocs.io/en/latest/news.html
          
          
        • LVFS 1.2 Released As The Project Serves Up 16 Million Firmware Downloads

          The Linux Vendor Firmware Service (LVFS) for serving up firmware/BIOS files to Linux users has now served over 16 million downloads thanks to cooperation from over 80 vendors that have uploaded more than 4,000 firmware files.

    • Distributions

      • Reviews

        • EndeavourOS Review: A Very User-Friendly Arch-Based Linux Distribution

          I would be remiss if I didn’t emphasize the excellent Welcome tool. The EndeavourOS Welcome Tool gives you access to a huge range of documentation through links to the project’s website. You can learn about the AUR, package management, hardware and networking issues, Bluetooth, Nvidia support, and can even add more useful applications right from that welcome page.

          The project is very open in saying that they will happily answer any questions, saying, “Stupid questions simply don’t exist with us, we’re happy to help you through your system and the terminal commands from beginning to end in a friendly manner.”

          From what I can see, this is absolutely true. The Forums on its website are broken up into easily-recognized groupings, and they have many users in the community and contributors from the project that appear active in the forums answering questions that come up. They’re doing an excellent job at bridging the gap between advanced users who know how to work with an Arch system and new users who are looking for a powerful and flexible OS to make the most of the hardware available to them. It’s something to applaud.

          [...]

          EndeavourOS is a great Linux distribution for new users that can span the full life cycle of growth from novice to advanced users. Though they are self-described as terminal-focused, there are several helpful graphical applications that help users navigate the complexities of an Arch Linux-based distribution. The bleeding-edge nature of any Arch Linux-based distribution, including the newest kernels and access to the AUR, will make for excellent hardware compatibility. I highly recommend trying out EndeavorOS, whether it’s your first distro hop or your 51st.

      • New Releases

        • Release | Endless OS 3.8.3

          Endless OS 3.8.3 was released for existing users today, June 9th, 2020.

          The only change compared to Endless OS 3.8.2 is a fix for a security issue on GNUTLS.

          Downloadable images for new users will be available in the next few days.

        • Educational Distro Escuelas Linux 6.9 Released with Zoom App, Latest Moksha Desktop



          Escuelas Linux 6.9 comes two and a half months after Escuelas Linux 6.8 to introduce a new app that become very popular during the Coronavirus pandemic, Zoom. That’s right, the Zoom video conferencing app is now installed by default in the latest Escuelas Linux release.

          If you’re working from home during the COVID-19 crisis, most probably you already have or are in the process of developing a neat home office. If you’re also into Open Source and educational projects, Escuelas Linux might just be the best distro for your needs right now.

      • BSD

        • pfSense 2.4.5-RELEASE-p1 Now Available

          We are pleased to announce the release of pfSense® software version 2.4.5-p1, now available for new installations and upgrades!

          pfSense software version 2.4.5-p1 is a maintenance release which brings several important stability and bug fixes for issues present in pfSense 2.4.5-RELEASE.

          pfSense 2.4.5-RELEASE-p1 updates and installation images are available now!

        • New FreeBSD code of conduct
          Dear FreeBSD community,
          
          The FreeBSD Project has adopted a new LLVM-derived code of conduct.  The
          new code of conduct can be found at
          
          https://www.freebsd.org/internal/code-of-conduct.html
          
          BACKGROUND
          
          Active FreeBSD developers were invited to complete two surveys related
          to our Code of Conduct.
          
          The first survey, conducted in 2018, told us that:
          
             - 94% of developers believe respectful communication in the project
               is important; 1% disagreed
          
             - 89% believe FreeBSD should be welcoming to people of all
               backgrounds; 2% disagreed
          
             - 73% say toxic people should be removed from the Project regardless
               of their technical contribution; 9% disagreed
          
             - 35% were dissatisfied with the code of conduct adopted in 2018, 34%
               were neutral, and 30% were satisfied.
          
          These results indicated that there was sufficient dissatisfaction with
          the current code of conduct to warrant investigation.  After reviewing
          other open source codes of conduct, the FreeBSD Core Team investigated
          adopting either an LLVM-derived or a Go-derived code of conduct.
          
          A second survey was held at the start of June and had only one question:
          
            Which code of conduct should FreeBSD adopt?
          
             - An LLVM-derived code of conduct:
          
          https://github.com/freebsd/core.10-public-docs/blob/master/CoC/llvm-based.md
          
             - A Go-Derived code of conduct:
          
          https://github.com/freebsd/core.10-public-docs/blob/master/CoC/golang-based.md
          
             - Retain the current code of conduct:
          
          https://web.archive.org/web/20200108075747/https://www.freebsd.org/internal/code-of-conduct.html
          
          RESULTS
          
             -  4% favoured keeping the current code of conduct
          
             - 33% favoured the Go-derived code of conduct
          
             - 63% favoured the LLVM-derived code of conduct.
          
          Thus, the Core Team, following the preference of a majority of active
          FreeBSD developers, adopted the LLVM-derived code of conduct.
          
          THANK YOU
          
          Thank you to the LLVM and Go communities, and our impassioned members
          who helped champion this evolution.
          
          -- 
          FreeBSD Core Team
          
        • FreeBSD Adopts A New Code of Conduct Based On The LLVM CoC

          Following a survey of FreeBSD developers gauging interest in a new Code of Conduct and then a follow-up survey of keeping their current CoC versus adopting one similar to the LLVM or Go projects, FreeBSD has now settled on a new document.

          Some 35% of the FreeBSD developer community was dissatisfied with their 2018 Code of Conduct, 34% were neutral, and only 30% satisfied so they set out to adopt a new CoC.

      • SUSE/OpenSUSE

        • SUSE High Availability on GCP – New Foundational Stack

          When it comes to the SUSE High Availability Extension (HAE) implementation in the Public Cloud, the two challenges we have are related to how to implement the Fencing Agent and the Floating IP resource agent functions. Each Cloud Service Provider (CSP) has its own way to implement that, which is different than the on-premises SUSE HAE implementation.

        • The rise of Linux popularity

          Kathy Gibson reports from a SUSE/SAB&T TEC webinar – Linux is seeing a huge surge in popularity – which is not surprising when you consider the various features offered by the operating system.
          Tinus Brink, director of consulting at SAB&T TEC, points out that Linux is free, which is a good part of the reason for its popularity.

          It is also open source by nature and the source code can be changed to fit your needs.

        • Moving to Linux is easier than you think

          Among the enhancements that have been made to the operating system of late are more user friendly user interfaces.
          The Gnome interface is native to Linux, Brink points out. “It is easy to use and quick.”
          If users want to use other interfaces, they can install multiple themes for front-end computers using KDE, LXQt, XFCE and others that emulate a Windows operating system.
          Deepin, Pantheon and Budgie can be downloaded to run a MacOS-like front-end.

        • Digest of YaST Development Sprint 101

          As explained in our previous blog post, this YaST development report is presented as a collection of links to rather descriptive Github’s pull requests. With that, our readers can deep into the particular topics they find interesting.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • Driving healthcare IT transformation with global systems integrators

          Successful digital transformation can create sustained growth and competitive advantage, but it’s often a highly complex undertaking that requires coordination across people, processes, organizational cultures and, of course, technology. In addition, each journey is shaped by the industries in which a particular enterprise is undergoing transformation. And with unprecedented challenges currently facing hospitals and healthcare facilities, the need for digital transformation to help address increased workloads and mission critical activity is even greater.

          Navigating digital transformation alone can mean steep learning curves and delays, but with the support of established open source communities and effective collaboration with a global systems integrator (GSI), healthcare organizations can improve digital transformation timelines and outcomes.

        • Network traffic control for containers in Red Hat OpenShift

          In this final entry for the container security series, we’ll look at network traffic control for containers running in Red Hat OpenShift.

          In a Multi-Level Security (MLS) environment, you will want to be able to ensure that containers in different security levels can only talk to pods in the same security level. For instance, a Top Secret pod should only talk to other Top Secret pods (and perhaps, only a subset of them). Red Hat OpenShift has a variety of mechanisms to control pod to pod access, and to control what networks a pod can be attached to a pod.

        • Bug Hunting in Python

          Having given the blog a good four years to really settle in and get comfortable, I thought it was about time I wrote a post. I don’t want to strain myself, so it’ll be short and incomplete (don’t worry, I’ll pad it with lots of debugging output so you can give that page key a workout).

          There are a myriad ways to debug Python applications. My first stop is typically pdb. It’s simple and ships with Python.

        • Runtime dependencies in Copr

          In the last release, we’ve added support for runtime dependencies in Copr. If your project needs another package to run, but you don’t need said package as a part of your project, you can have it as a runtime dependency instead. You can now specify other repositories (either Copr projects or external) as runtime dependencies. These repositories will then be enabled alongside your Copr project.

        • Differences Between RHEL, CentOS and Fedora

          Linux distributions are much like car models. There are tons to choose from, new ones pop up every day, and it’s hard to determine the differences between some of them. Specifically, there’s a lot of general information about the Linux company, Red Hat, and its work surrounding the three main distributions it owns and sponsors. Highlighted and clarified here are the differences between RHEL, CentOS, and Fedora, and why one may or may not be the best choice for your usage.

        • Updating the Nautilus cornerstone of Red Hat’s Ceph Storage platform

          Red Hat Ceph Storage 4 brought the upstream Ceph Nautilus codebase to our customers, and laid out the foundation of our Ceph storage product portfolio for the rest of the year. 4.0 is integrated with OpenStack Platform 16 from the start, enabling customers to roll out the latest and greatest across the Red Hat Portfolio: OpenStack Platform 16 on RHEL 8.1 with Red Hat Ceph Storage 4.0 through a single, director-driven install process, equally supporting dis-aggregated and hyperconverged configurations. The combination of Bluestore and Beast.ASIO as default components literally doubled our object store write performance compared to 12 months ago, and that is just the start of our object story for what promises to be a very busy year.

        • What APIs mean for an open and connected insurance industry

          Many insurance companies are taking steps to use application programming interfaces (APIs). Building upon internal APIs for backend communications that have been in place for a while, but now the focus is on opening up APIs to the outside world to offer better services to policyholders. Call it connected insurance, Open Insurance, or open APIs – whatever the name, it all relates back to finding a common approach to securely share data that drives value.

          As is the case with many industries, the emphasis today is on improving the customer experience. Clients’ expectations are growing: for example, life insurance policyholders haven’t forgotten how important it is to ensure that their loved ones will be taken care of if something happens to them, but they also want something more than a death benefit for the premiums they’re paying. They want to realize everyday value – and if they can’t get it from their current insurance provider, they’ll find one that’s more accommodating.

        • IBM won’t develop facial recognition tech for mass surveillance anymore

          IBM has announced that it won’t offer or develop general-purpose facial recognition technology to encourage responsible usage of tech by law enforcement. The company has been a major player in the field for years, offering several solutions.

        • The perfect match – Ansible and IBM Cloud

          In today’s busy world, it is all about automation, automation, and more automation. Let’s face it! Manually provisioning infrastructure and installing apps is something IT administrators just don’t have the time for.

          The de facto standard industry solution? Yep, Ansible! Ansible is a widely popular open source framework for performing provisioning, configuration management, application deployment, orchestration, and everything in between. There are thousands of Ansible modules available that allow anything to be automated, including provisioning of public cloud resources.

          And now we are excited to share that IBM Cloud can be fully driven by Ansible, with over 100 modules available to automate all facets of the IBM® Cloud®. Whether you want to automate the creation of virtual private clouds (VPCs), virtual machines, storage volumes, floating IPs or anything else, we’ve got you covered!

        • Red Hat expands cloud and service provider footprint with Ingram Micro
        • Podcast: Find out what COBOL can do for you

          With COBOL in the news, my fellow IBM developer advocate J.J. Asghar and I were recently invited to speak on the Stack Overflow Podcast 230: Mastering the Mainframe.

          In this episode, J.J. talks about the code pattern he wrote, Run a COBOL program on Kubernetes, which demonstrates how GnuCOBOL can be run on Kubernetes. I provide some background on IBM COBOL and how it’s used in IBM Z environments today, including modernization efforts that have led to incredible speed improvements over the years for code compiled in the latest COBOL compilers, and integration with popular elements like JSON.

        • IBM Cloud Architectures now prominently includes supply chain

          The Supply chain category is newly available on IBM Cloud Architectures. The Cloud Architecture Center provides practices for building apps on the cloud, across multiple clouds, and in hybrid environments where your cloud app links to your on-premises application. IBM Cloud Architectures contains a series of reference architectures, design patterns, and solution briefs for common industry technology areas, such as Edge computing, Internet of Things, and artificial intelligence, as well as industry-specific verticals including retail and automotive, and now supply chain.

        • Going serverless with Java and Quarkus
        • AI vs COVID-19: How Java helps nurses and doctors in this fight

          DevNation Tech Talks are hosted by the Red Hat technologists who create our products. These sessions include real solutions plus code and sample projects to help you get started. In this talk, you’ll learn how OptaPlanner has helped keep medical staff and patients safer with advanced planning algorithms, from Geoffrey De Smet and Edson Yanaga.

          Assigning nurses and doctors to hospital shifts is far more challenging than it looks on the surface. Don’t give two shifts at the same time. Adhere to skill requirements. When going home, leave enough time for a full night’s sleep. Maximize approval of their day off requests. Make the schedule fair. With advanced planning algorithms, the best-kept secret in AI, you can solve this challenge easily in Java.

      • Debian Family

        • Great fonts in Debian 10 (or later)

          Debian comes with tons of fonts for all kinds of purposes, you can easily list them all (almost) with: apt-cache search ^fonts-

          Above you can see a nice composition with examples of several fonts. The composition is published under the MIT (Expat) license and the source SVG (created with Inkscape) can be downloaded here. You will need the fonts to be installed in your system so the SVG is correctly rendered.

        • Second Debian Med COVID-19 hackathon (June 15-21, 2020)
          Dear Debian Community,
          
          Debian Med joined the virtual (online) [COVID-19 Biohackathon] from
          April 5-11 2020.  We considered the outcome a great success in terms of
          the approached tasks, the new members we gained and the support of
          Debian infrastructure teams (namely the ftpmaster team).
          
          COVID-19 is not over and the Debian Med team wants to do another week of
          hackathon to continue with this great success.  We want to do this from
          June 15th to June 21th 2020.
          
          A [recently shared pre-publication draft paper] highlights which
          software tools are considered useful "to Accelerate SARS-CoV-2 and
          Coronavirus Research".  Many of these tools would benefit from being
          packaged in Debian and all the advantages that Debian brings for both
          users and upstream alike.
          
          As in the first sprint most tasks do not require any knowledge of
          biology or medicine, and all types of contributions are welcome: bug
          triage, testing, documentation, CI, translations, packaging, and code
          contributions.
          
          1. [Debian related bugs in COVID-19 related packages]
          
          2. [COVID-19 related software that is awaiting packaging]
             please respond to the RFP with your intent so we don't duplicate work
          
          3. You can also contribute directly to the upstream packages, linked
             from the [Debian Med COVID-19 task page].  Note: many biomedical
             software packages are quite resource limited, even compared to a
             typical FOSS project. Please be kind to the upstream author/maintainers
             and realize that they may have limited resources to review your
             contribution. Triaging open issues and opening pull requests to fix
             problems is likely to be more useful than nitpicking their coding
             style.
          
          4. Architectures/porting: Please focus on amd64, as it is the primary
             architecture for biomedical software. A secondary tier would be arm64 /
             ppc64el / s390x (but beware the endian-related issues on s390x). From a
             free/open hardware perspective it would be great to see more riscv64
             support, but that is not a priority right now
          
          5. Python developers: The Debian Med team is also trying to [improve the
             availability ofautomated biomedical pipelines/workflows]  using the
             Common Workflow Language open standard. The reference implementation of
             CWL is written in Python and there are many [open issues ready for work
             that don't require any biomedical background].
          
          6. It is very easy to contribute to Debian Med team. We have a lowNMU
             policy for all our packages. Merge requests on Salsa are usually
             processed quickly (but please ping some of the latest Uploaders of the
             package to make sure it will be noticed). Even better if you ask for
             membership to the team and push directly to the salsa repository.
          
          7. The [debian-med-team-policy] should answer all questions how to contribute.
          
          8. There is a [work-needed wiki] that will help keep track of who is
             working on which projects.
          
          9. There is also a [NEW requests wiki] where we can request expedited
             NEW processing to support this effort.  In the last sprint ftpmaster
             was picking from here with high priority.  Thanks again for this.
          
          During the hackathon we will coordinate ourselves via the the Salsa
          coordination page, Debian Med mailing list and IRC:
          
          *  https://salsa.debian.org/med-team/community/2020-covid19-...
          *  https://lists.debian.org/debian-med/
          *  https://wiki.debian.org/IRC
          *  irc://irc.debian.org/debian-med
          *  https://jitsi.debian.social/DebianMedCovid19 every day at 15:00 UTC
          
          Thanks in advance for considering to join our sprint.
          
          Sincerely
          
              Andreas Tille on behalf of the Debian Med team.
          
        • Second Debian Med COVID-19 hackathon

          The Debian Med team joined a COVID-19 Biohackathon last April and is planing on doing it again on June 15-21.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Ubuntu at the Microsoft European Virtual Open Source Summit

          On June 16th 2020, the Microsoft European Virtual Open Source Summit will be the occasion to meet and hear from all the communities, entrepreneurs and developers involved in building the future of open source technologies in the cloud.

        • Canonical Releases Important Ubuntu Kernel Security Updates, Patch Now

          

          Canonical already released the other day a new version of the intel-microcode firmware to mitigate the latest Intel vulnerabilities, but now it also published new versions of the Linux kernel for all supported Ubuntu releases, including Ubuntu 20.04 LTS, Ubuntu 19.10, Ubuntu 18.04 LTS, and Ubuntu 16.04 LTS.

          Apart from mitigating the Intel SRBDS/CrossTalk vulnerability (CVE-2020-0543), the new Linux kernel security updates fixes race conditions (CVE-2020-12114) discovered by Piotr Krysiuk in the file system implementation, which lets a local attacker cause a denial of service (system crash).

          Also addressed are a flaw (CVE-2020-0067) discovered in Linux kernel’s F2FS file system implementation that allowed a local attacker to expose sensitive information (kernel memory), and a vulnerability (CVE-2020-10751) discovered by Dmitry Vyukov in the SELinux netlink security hook, which could allow a privileged attacker to bypass SELinux netlink restrictions. The latter only affects the Linux 5.4 kernel of Ubuntu 20.04 LTS and Linux 4.15 kernel of Ubuntu 18.04 LTS and Ubuntu 16.04 LTS.

        • The 3 Best Ways to Restart Ubuntu Server



          The main difference between the Ubuntu Desktop version and the Server is that the Ubuntu Desktop is used for personal use. The Server edition can be used to serve up Applications, Websites, E-mail Servers, File shares, and more other services that can help expand the functionality of businesses.

          Usually, users of the Ubuntu Server depend on the Terminal to perform their daily tasks. One of the tasks that are common for a system administrator is to restart or reboot the Ubuntu Server. The primary reason for resetting the Ubuntu Server is to complete the Server update or to apply some new configurations.

          In this article, we are going to discuss the three important commands that can be used to reboot the Ubuntu Server.

        • Ubuntu’s Ubiquity Installer Begins Adding ZFS Encryption Support

          On the desktop side for Ubuntu 20.10 one of the changes we have been eager to see is ZFS encryption support on new installations in an easy-to-use manner and extending their existing OpenZFS file-system support. That ZFS encryption support has begun to land.

          The support builds on the encryption capabilities of OpenZFS but makes it easy to deploy via the “Ubiquity” desktop installer for Ubuntu. Commits landing today in Ubiquity add the new option that besides performing an experimental ZFS install can also allow encryption to be enabled and then prompted for a security key, similar to the long-standing EXT4+LZM encrypted installations available from the Ubuntu installer.

        • People and processes behind “Ubuntu certified” devices

          A computer is made of many different components, from the CPU to the touchpad, from the sound card to the wireless module. In order to provide the best experience for the user, each of these components has to work well on its own, and all of them have to play well together. If you’ve ever installed GNU/Linux on a recent computer or a device with very specific components, you know it’s rarely an easy task. After installing your favorite Linux distribution on your brand new laptop, you log in and discover that the Bluetooth doesn’t work so you cannot use your wireless mouse. Later on, you close your laptop lid, put it in your bag and when you reopen it, you find out the audio is not available anymore and you have to reboot to listen to your music!

          The Ubuntu certification program is here to ensure that, for a given computer, all of its components work as expected and the user can enjoy the best experience “out of the box”. It is a guarantee of quality, functionality and maintenance, as Ubuntu certified devices are based on Long Term Support (LTS) releases and therefore receive updates for five years.

        • Migrating your infrastructure to Ubuntu 20.04 LTS: How, when and why?
    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Nextcloud Vs ownCloud: What’s the Difference? Which one Should You Use?

        Nextcloud and ownCloud are two popular open source cloud storage software. Learn what is the difference between the two and which one should you use.

      • Haiku R1 Beta 2 “Open-Source BeOS” Operating System Released

        Nearly two years after Haiku R1 beta, the second beta has finally surfaced for this open-source operating system. This second beta incorporates many driver improvements including USB3 improvements and leveraging more drivers from FreeBSD, an NVMe storage driver, continued ARM64 bring-up, memory optimizations, threading improvements, UEFI support, and a lot of other work that accumulated over the past two years.

      • Release Notes: A look at DocumentCloud’s new API

        Over the coming months, we’re migrating newsrooms to the new version of DocumentCloud (don’t worry — you’ll get a notification before anything changes!). Along with the updated version of the site, we’re also moving to a new API. Anything you can do through the web interface you’ll also be able to do through the API, so we’re excited to see what kinds of new integrations you build.

        We’re also looking for feedback to make this as smooth a transition as possible. Please get in touch if you’d like to discuss updating your CMS or other integrations to use the new API; we can give you access to the beta so you can test and get everything working perfectly. We’ll also be updating commonly used DocumentCloud libraries to make the transition as seamless as we can.

      • Racism is a Free Software Issue

        Racism is a free software issue. I gave a talk that touched on this at CopyLeft Conf 2019. I also talked a little bit about it at All Things Open 2019 and FOSDEM 2020 in my talk The Ethics Behind Your IoT. I know statistics, theory, and free software. I don’t know about race and racism nearly as well. I might make mistakes – I have made some and I will make more. Please, when I do, help me do better.

        I want to look at a few particular technologies and think about how they reinforce systemic racism. Worded another way: how is technology racist? How does technology hurt Black Indigenous People of Color (BIPOC)? How does technology keep us racist? How does technology make it easier to be racist?

        [...]

        The technology we have developed reinforces racism on a society wide scale because it makes it harder for BIPOC people to interact with this world that is run by computers and software. It’s harder to not be racist when the technology around us is being used to perpetuate racist paradigms. For example, if a store implements facial recognition software for checkout, black women are less likely to be identified. They are then more likely to be targeted as trying to steal from the store. We are more likely to take this to mean that black women are more likely to steal. This is how technology builds racism,

        People are being excluded largely because they are not building these technologies, because they are not welcome in our spaces. There simply are not enough Black and Hispanic technologists and that is a problem. We need to care about this because when software doesn’t work for everyone, it doesn’t work. We cannot build on the promise of free and open source software when we are excluding the majority of people.

      • Web Browsers

        • Mozilla

          • Improvements to Statistics Processing on AMO

            We’re revamping the statistics we make available to add-on developers on addons.mozilla.org (AMO).

            These stats are aggregated from add-on update logs and don’t include any personally identifiable user data. They give developers information about user adoption, general demographics, and other insights that might help them make changes and improvements.

            The current system is costly to run, and glitches in the data have been a long-standing recurring issue. We are addressing these issues by changing the data source, which will improve reliability and reduce processing costs.

          • Next steps in testing our Firefox Private Network browser extension beta

            Last fall, we launched the Firefox Private Network browser extension beta as a part of our Test Pilot experiments program. The extension offers safe, no-hassle network protection in the Firefox browser. Since our initial launch, we’ve released a number of versions offering different capabilities. We’ve also launched a Virtual Private Network (VPN) for users interested in full device protection.

            Today we are pleased to announce the next step in our Firefox Private Network browser extension Beta. Starting soon, we will be transitioning from a free beta to a paid subscription beta for the Firefox Private Network browser extension. This version will be offered for a limited time for $2.99/mo and will provide unlimited access while using the Firefox Private Network extension. Like our existing extension, this version will be available in the U.S. first, but we hope to expand to other markets soon. Unlike our previous beta, this version will also allow users to connect up to three Firefox browsers at once using the same account. This will only be available for desktop users. For this release, we will also be updating our product icon to differentiate more clearly from the VPN. More information about our VPN as a stand-alone product offering will be shared in the coming weeks.

      • SaaS/Back End/Databases

        • What is MySQL? How Does MySQL Work?

          MySQL is the world’s most popular enterprise-grade open-source relational database management system (RDBMS) that is being used at Facebook, Google, Adobe, Alcatel Lucent, and Zappos, and by many online websites/applications.

          It is developed, distributed, and supported by Oracle Corporation. It is a cross-platform, powerful, flexible, and extensible relational database that is based on the SQL (Structured Query Language) standardized language used to create and manipulate databases.

          The latest version of MySQL (version 8.0 at the time of writing) comes with support for NoSQL (“Not Only SQL”) document databases. It can be installed in Linux, macOS, and other UNIX-like operating systems, and Windows.

        • Not all open source is created equal

          Open Source, Free and Open Source Software, Code Available, GNU General Public License (GPL), Berkeley Software Distribution (BSD), Business Source License (BSL) — aren’t they all the same? Why does that matter? Isn’t it all open source?

          I often encounter these questions in discussions with CIOs, CDOs, developers and software cognoscenti. In discussions with my colleague Bruce Momjian, co-founder of the open source project PostgreSQL, I have learned that the differences are substantial and meaningful. In my past life as an IT leader, I cared about virulent licenses, such as the GPL, and permissive licenses, such as BSD. But I never understood the deeper mechanisms behind the open source projects and why those structures should matter to strategic decision makers.

          Many open source projects, such as MongoDB or CockroachDB, are largely driven by single commercial entities. These projects use open source licenses, such as GNU General Public License, or ‘source available’ licenses like Business Source License, that allow the users to inspect the code and potentially contribute to the code, but the majority of development is funded and driven by a single commercial entity. In these projects, there is a very limited ‘community’ effect.

      • Productivity Software/LibreOffice/Calligra

        • The Draw Guide 6.4 is Ready for Download

          Following the recent release of our updated guides, the LibreOffice Documentation Team is happy to announce the immediate availability of the LibreOffice Draw Guide 6.4, the complete handbook for the drawing tool of LibreOffice. The guide was updated from the existing release 4.3 and include all the improvements developed since early 2014, when the last version of the guide was published.

          LibreOffice Draw is the vector drawing tool of LibreOffice, capable of creating and edit complex drawings, from basic geometric shapes to sophisticated technical drawings, including tri-dimensional composition, all supporting the ODF file format standard.

          “Returning to the LibreOffice Documentation team was a great opportunity for me to continue to contribute for the LibreOffice Community. I used all my 35 years of professional experience as a technical writer in high end industries to bring the Draw Guide up to date with the latest publicly available release of LibreOffice (Version 6.4). I hope the community enjoy LibreOffice as this is an excellent office software package that is freely available” said Peter Schofield, who coordinated the update and release of the Draw guide.

      • CMS

        • WordPress 5.4 & htaccess prompt on every page in Firefox

          When it rains, it pours. A few weeks ago, I wrote an article on WordPress cURL error 28 issue that I spotted on my books-only website, and which seems to be caused by having an htaccess file in the wp-admin directory. This wasn’t a problem until the WordPress 5.4 update, but now it seems it is. Well, since I know what the source is, I can ignore it.

          A side effect to keeping the htaccess in place is that there will be a prompt to authenticate on EVERY page on the website – the kind of prompt you would expect only when trying to access the restricted page(s) – and this phenomenon seems to be limited to Firefox. Thinking myself a special snowflake, I went about a-readin’ and a-testin’, and found a support topic on the WordPress site, where someone discussed a very similar if not identical phenomenon. So I decided to some more investigating, and figure out what gives.

          [...]
          I am truly, deeply not happy having to write this kind of articles, because I’m only half-helping you. I am exposing problems, weird ones at that, and providing workarounds, but I don’t feel at ease, because we’re still dealing with buggy underlying code. Somehow managing to miraculously make the “bad error” go away does not inspire confidence. It boils down to how WordPress 5.4 works, and there’s something fundamentally different in how it handles authentication.

          Furthermore, I don’t have anything smart to say why this only manifests in Firefox. I will continue playing some more, but at the moment, the best I can give you is the workaround above, plus the information I’ve shared in the previous article.

      • FSF

        • FSFE

          • Hamburg wants to focus more on Free Software



            In order to strengthen digital sovereignty of Hamburg, the city wants to use more Free Software in the future (see the PDF of the coalition agreement). The goal is to minimise the dependence on individual providers and create transparency. Wherever it appears meaningful, cooperation with other administrations should be established. However, the coalition agreement contains several loopholes, for example for procurement procedures and diffuse justification to protect proprietary software vendors.

            Free Software gives everyone the right to use, understand, distribute and improve software for any purpose. Administrations also benefit from these freedoms when they rely on Free Software. More and more administrations all over Europe are using and developing Free Software in order to benefit from interoperable solutions, to avoid vendor lock ins, to be transparent and sovereign, to spend funds in the most efficient way and to foster innovation and collaboration.

        • GNU Projects

          • STM32 Blue Pill Turned GPG Security Token

            Feeling the cost of commercial options like the YubiKey and Nitrokey were too high, [TheStaticTurtle] started researching DIY alternatives. He found an open source project allows the STM32F103 to act as a USB cryptographic token for GNU Privacy Guard, which was a start. All he had to do was build a suitable device to install it on.

      • Programming/Development

        • Rcpp Webinar Recording Available

          As announced in a few tweets leading up to it, I took the date of what would have been the annual R/Finance conference as an opportunity to hold the one-hour tutorial / workshop with introductory Rcpp material which I often present on the first morning preceding the conference as a self-organized webinar. The live-streaming worked actually reasonably well via obs to youtube (even though the comprehensive software by the latter complained at times about insufficient bitstream rates–the joys of living with a (near) monopolistic broadband provider whom I should leave for fiber…). Apparently around seventy people connected to the stream—which is more than we usually have in the seminar room at UIC for the R/Finance morning.

        • RcppArmadillo 0.9.900.1.0

          Armadillo is a powerful and expressive C++ template library for linear algebra aiming towards a good balance between speed and ease of use with a syntax deliberately close to a Matlab. RcppArmadillo integrates this library with the R environment and language–and is widely used by (currently) 727 other packages on CRAN.

          Conrad recently released a new upstream version 9.900.1 of Armadillo which we packaged and tested as usual first as a ‘release candidate’ build and then as the release. As usual, logs from reverse-depends runs are in the rcpp-logs repo.

        • 4 Excellent Free Books to Learn Agda and Type Theory

          Agda is a dependently typed functional programming language based on intuitionistic Type Theory. Type theory is concerned both with programming and logic.

          It’s an extension of Martin-Löf’s type theory, and is the latest in the tradition of languages developed in the programming logic group at Chalmers. It has inductive families, i.e., data types which depend on values, such as the type of vectors of a given length. It also has parametrized modules, mixfix operators, Unicode characters, and an interactive Emacs interface which can assist the programmer in writing the program. Other languages in this tradition are Alf, Alfa, Agda 1, Cayenne. Some other loosely related languages are Coq, Epigram, and Idris.

          Agda is also a proof assistant based on the propositions-as-types paradigm, but has no separate tactics language, and proofs are written in a functional programming style.

          Agda is open-source and enjoys contributions from many authors. The center of the Agda development is the Programming Logic group at Chalmers and Gothenburg University.

          Here’s our recommended free books to learn about Agda and Type Theory.

        • 25 years of PHP: The personal web tools that ended up everywhere

          On 8th June 1995 programmer Rasmus Lerdorf announced the birth of “Personal Home Page Tools (PHP Tools)”.

          The PHP system evolved into one that now drives nearly 80 per cent of websites using server-side programming, according to figures from w3techs.

          Well-known sites running PHP include every WordPress site (WordPress claims to run “35 per cent of the web”), Wikipedia and Facebook (with caveats – Facebook uses a number of languages including its own JIT-compiled version of PHP called HHVM). PHP is also beloved by hosting companies, many of whom provide their customers with PHPMyAdmin for administering MySQL databases.

        • Nightmares and Bugs

          So, this bug report reported a small, but real issue and uncovered a deeper issue. Without the report we probably wouldn’t have noticed the issue. Krita is better because of the report, and the reporter is one of our “known-good” reporters: he has reported 16 bugs this year, one is still in Reported state because we couldn’t reproduce it, six are Confirmed, two are Assigned and seven are Resolved Fixed. Yu-Hsuan Lai has helped us make Krita materially better!

          But… Even with me, Dmitry, Agata, Wolthera, Emmett, Eoin, Ivan, Mathias and more people fixing bugs all the time, we’re not getting the numbers down. The floor remains littered, the luggage unpacked and the china unboxed.

          Of course we’re not the only ones in this situation: every project that takes bug reports from the general public faces this issue. Some people argue that any bug that has a workaround should be documented and closed; but workaround don’t make for a happy workflow. Others argue that every bug report that is older than two weeks, or a month should be closed because it’s clearly not a priority. But the issue reported is real, and will get reported over and again, with no way of chaining the reports together.

          It’s also possible to treat reports like a funnel: first ask people to report on a user-support forum, like krita-artists.org, and only when it seems to be a real bug create a bug report, and only when it’s triaged, put it in a queue. But the problem with that is that nobody’s queue is ever empty. That can be done by assigning the bug to one of us: currently we have 64 bugs in the Assigned state. that means, on average, ten bugs each person’s queue. That in turn probably means betwee a week and a month of tasks already in our queue… Which means we shouldn’t actually look at any newly reported bugs, before we funnel them into our queue. (Another option would be to create issues on invent.kde.org for every bug we really want to work on, something we used to do with phabricator… But pretty quickly we drowned in those tasks as well.)

        • How to Choose the Right Multiprocessor for Embedded System

          Single processor systems are often used to handle the entire system load. This is mainly done to reduce costs and is figured that fewer parts mean lower costs. However, by splitting up the task among multiprocessors, you can boost the system’s execution speed by often simplifying design which compensates for the added costs.

          Choosing a multiprocessor becomes increasingly important as the processors work in parallel to increase the performance of an embedded system’s application environment more efficiently than that of a single processor. The question then arises of how to choose the right multiprocessor for embedded systems.

          [...]

          The increased number of processes executed share software structure, integration, and memory. If you are using symmetric processes, the self-scheduling tasks impart heavier resources than a single processor. Multiprocessors then require a more complicated and complex operating system for embedded GUI design software.
          It becomes crucial to ensure that your embedded GUI software also supports your chosen OS to run several programs concurrently. For this, UNIX is widely used for several multiprocessing systems. However, OS/2 is also widely used for high-end PCs.

        • Template Haskell and Stream-processing programs

          StrIoT is an experimental distributed stream-processing system that myself and others are building in order to explore our research questions. A user of StrIoT writes a stream-processing program, using a set of 8 functional operators provided for the purpose.

        • The 20 Best Ruby Books for Learning Ruby Programming

          Ruby is an interpreted programming language for web application development. This high level and general-purpose language can help you to develop very sophisticated applications. Ruby on Rails has rich gems, which is not even in possession of many modern technologies. Therefore it is worth learning the Ruby programming language at this time. Keeping this view in mind, we are providing an impressive Ruby book list so that you can learn this precious language with comfort and interest.

        • Most tech content is bullshit

          This pattern is consuming — instead of creating. Consuming — without questioning. Consuming and hiding behind an authority.

          I saw developers taking other people’s solutions for granted. Not thinking twice about the approach, not bothering about analyzing it. Ok, when this is Dan Abramov telling you how to use React or documentation saying that this is the only way to use its API, then yes, you probably should agree with it. Yet, when you’re using some tech content without at least a bit of skepticism, then well, you still might go far in your career, but it also may hold you back.

        • Python

          • Python Scripting for the Ethical Hacker Part II

            Welcome back to LSB my fellow ethical hackers, this is the second part to our Python scripting tutorial. Today we will be installing PyCharm and creating our first Python script.

            Pycharm is an integrated development environment (IDE) and we will be using this throughout the tutorial, so let’s get started.

          • A Comprehensive Guide to Handling Exceptions in Python

            This article describes some examples of what to do and not do when writing exceptions. Hopefully, it’ll instill in you a deeper understanding of exception handling broadly as well provide some useful Python tips.

          • Getting the Most Out of a Python Traceback

            Python prints a traceback when an exception is raised in your code. The traceback output can be a bit overwhelming if you’re seeing it for the first time or you don’t know what it’s telling you. But the Python traceback has a wealth of information that can help you diagnose and fix the reason for the exception being raised in your code. Understanding what information a Python traceback provides is vital to becoming a better Python programmer.

          • Style your data plots in Python with Pygal

            Python is full of libraries that can visualize data. One of the more interactive options comes from Pygal, which I consider the library for people who like things to look good. It generates beautiful SVG (Scalable Vector Graphics) files that users can interact with. SVG is a standard format for interactive graphics, and it can lead to rich user experiences with only a few lines of Python.

          • PSF GSoC students blogs: Weekly Blog Post | Gsoc’2020 | #2

            I worked on improvising the UI for the project on adobe XD keeping in mind that all the required features perfectly fit in. With a lot of possible ways of how to accomplish the desired features, I planned out the best possible ways to achieve that keeping in mind all the potential Use cases for the project after receiving valuable insights from the mentors.

          • ./bin/huey-isnt-running.sh – A bash script to prevent lurking ghosts

            tl;dr; Here’s a useful bash script to avoid starting something when its already running as a ghost process.

            Huey is a great little Python library for doing background tasks. It’s like Celery but much lighter, faster, and easier to understand.

            What cost me almost an hour of hair-tearing debugging today was that I didn’t realize that a huey daemon process had gotten stuck in the background with code that wasn’t updating as I made changes to the tasks.py file in my project. I just couldn’t understand what was going on.

            The way I start my project is with honcho which is a Python Foreman clone.

          • SettingWithCopyWarning in Pandas: Views vs Copies

            NumPy and Pandas are very comprehensive, efficient, and flexible Python tools for data manipulation. An important concept for proficient users of these two libraries to understand is how data are referenced as shallow copies (views) and deep copies (or just copies). Pandas sometimes issues a SettingWithCopyWarning to warn the user of a potentially inappropriate use of views and copies.

          • Report of June 10th Cubicweb Meeting

            We’ve just published the RC1 for CubicWeb https://pypi.org/project/cubicweb/3.28.0rc1/ and a new version 1.7.0 for logilab-common https://pypi.org/project/logilab-common/1.7.0/

            Our current focus is finishing the last details for the release.

          • Django User Model

            Today’s Topics is Django User model i am going to talk about Django user model in Brief, i will start by talking about Django.

            Django is framework written in python it’s a backend framework which make the life of python developer a-lot easier by hiding all the abstraction the developer would have to deal with if it wasn’t for Django, Django is used by a-lot of famous companies and start-up’s like Quora(my favourite one in the list), Youtube, Instagram, Pinterest, etc.. and the list goes on, Django kind of prohibits re-inventing the wheel which means it doesn’t encourage much of doing things from Scratch.

            Django follows an MVT (Model View Template) Design Paradigm which is Similar to the MVC(Model View Controller) in java where the Model is the Database of the Django App and View is the Function which joins the backend part(Database) with the Front-end part(Template) and the Template is the front-end part(raw html or css or any other front-end framework(react, angular).

          • A Hundred Days of Code, Day 041

            Started to very slowly do the Mega Flask Tutorial.
            This real world project-cum-tutorial, should let me learn more real-world-esque Python and expand beyond the tiny vocabulary, I have.

            Setup my environment today and created a baby flask app.
            Even that had something to teach me.
            I could not quite wrap my head around decorators, the first time I read about them and this tiny app uses routes in the form of decorators.
            Which meant, I had to go read about them and understand them first.

          • Concise data plotting in Python with Altair

            The plotting libraries available in Python offer multiple ways to present data according to your preferences, whether you prize flexibility, design, ease-of-use, or a particular style.

            Plotting in Altair delivers a different solution than others which I find to be simpler as the amount of plotting done scales. It has an elegant interface, thanks to Vega, the declarative plotting language that allows you to define what your plots should look like, rather than writing loops and conditionals to construct them.

          • PyCoder’s Weekly: Issue #424 (June 9, 2020)
          • PSF GSoC students blogs: GSoC week 1

            This week I’ve been largely focused on blog posting bugs, notably #394 and #396. These two bugs are not actually part of the python-blogs codebase, but the now-abandoned aldryn newsblog projected which we use as a dependency.

            Since aldryn_newsblog is abandoned and its repository set permanently read-only, the first step was pull that module into the python-blogs tree. After spending a few hours unsuccessfully attempting to merge aldryn_newsblog’s commit history into a python-blogs branch, then merge its branch with the master, I gave up and just copied aldryn_newsblog’s final version as a subdirectory (abandoning its 5 years of commit history in the process). Someday, if anyone really cares and has more git experience than me, they can always run this merge “correctly”.

        • Rust

          • Why I switched from Java to Rust

            When you start learning a language, it’s easy just to copy and paste text that you’ve seen elsewhere, or fiddle with unfamiliar constructs until they—sort of—work. Using code or producing code that you don’t really understand but seems to work is sometimes referred to as “using incantations” (from the idea that most magicians in fiction, film, and gaming recite collections of magic words that “just work” without really understanding what they’re doing or what the combination of words actually means). Some languages4 are particularly prone to this sort of approach, but many—most?—people learning a new language are prone to doing this when they start out just because they want things to work.

            Recently, I was up until 1am implementing a new feature—accepting command-line input—that I couldn’t really get my head ’round. I’d spent quite a lot of time on it (including looking for—and failing to find—some appropriate incantations), and then asked for some help on an internal rust-lang channel. (You might want to sign up to the general Slack Rust channel inhabited by some people I know.) A number of people had made some suggestions about what had been going wrong, and one person was enormously helpful in picking apart some of the suggestions, so I understood them better. He explained quite a lot, but finished with, “I don’t know the return type of the hash function you’re calling—I think this is a good spot for you to figure this piece out on your own.”

          • The Rust Programming Language Blog: 2020 Event Lineup – Update

            In 2020 the way we can do events suddenly changed. In the past we had in-person events all around the world, with some major conferences throughout the year. With everything changed due to a global pandemic this won’t be possible anymore. Nonetheless the Rust community found ways to continue with events in some form or another. With more and more events moving online they are getting more accessible to people no matter where they are.

            Below you find updated information about Rust events in 2020.

    • Standards/Consortia

      • Ingo Juergensmann: Jabber vs. XMPP

        XMPP is widely – and mabye better – known as Jabber. This was more or less the same until Cisco bought Jabber Inc and the trademark. You can read more about the story on the XMPP.org website. But is there still a Jabber around? Yes, it is!

        But Cisco Jabber is a whole infrastructure environment: you can’t use Cisco Jabber client on its own without the other required Cisco infrastructure as Cisco CUCM and CIsco IM&P servers. So you can’t just setup Prosody or ejabberd on your Debian server and connect Cisco Jabber to it. But what are the differences of Cisco Jabber to “standard” XMPP clients?

  • Leftovers

  • Harry Dodge’s ‘My Meteorite’ Is Like a Wonderful Sculpture

    In the early 1990s, Harry Dodge cofounded Red Dora’s Bearded Lady, a community-based performance space that served as a hub for an emerging DIY literary and arts scene in pre-gentrified San Francisco. Soon after, his buddy film By Hook or by Crook (which he directed with Silas Howard) premiered at Sundance and quickly became a queer cult classic. Along with the film, Dodge’s video work, writing, drawing, and sculpture make up an ongoing investigation into questions about materiality and consciousness—what he has called the “pursuit of the in-between.” (Most recently, his sculptures have been exhibited in solo and group shows, including the New Museum’s 40th-anniversary exhibition “Trigger” in 2017 and ’18.) His new book, My Meteorite: Or, Without the Random There Can Be No New Thing, an experimental memoir of sorts, feels like a natural continuation of this long-standing interdisciplinary practice. It is yet another sculpture, with his words and thoughts pushed around as if they were aluminum or clay.

  • “Stick to Sports” Has Gone by the Wayside on Right-Leaning Sports Talk Radio

    Donald Trump’s near-frantic desire to reopen the national economy in order to salvage his reelection hopes has been about as subtle as an earthquake in a nail gun factory. He has found support for this push from within his voter base, from certain portions of the business community, and from conservative governors in less-populated states where COVID-19 has not (yet) done substantial damage.

    • One Week in Trump’s America
    • Science

      • Open source high-performance computing more accessible to agencies

        HPC modeling and simulation software is evolving rapidly in three key areas, says Schroeder: the HPC platform, containerization and workloads in the cloud.

        At the platform level, there’s a huge amount of diversity in CPU architectures with improved processors and accelerators such as GPUs and FPGAs.

        “The rate of change in HPC is higher than ever before, and it is accelerating. This makes it so much more important and vital to navigate and stay current with the change that is happening,” he says.

        Additionally, containerizing HPC workloads will increase the likelihood that scientific results can be reproduced by other researchers and reproduced after the original HPC cluster has been decommissioned. And with workloads moving to the cloud, the capacity is more flexible to support more researchers and accelerate results.

    • Education

      • We Need an Academic New Deal

        Graduate students from Columbia University’s School of Engineering during the commencement ceremony in New York. (Keith Bedford / Reuters)

        Higher education has been in a state of crisis for more than a decade. Student loan debt has more than doubled since the Great Recession to $1.5 trillion in 2018. Coupled with a massive decline in tuition revenues, many colleges and universities are on the verge of collapse. In response to the financial hardship that forced tuition down and debt to rise, university administrators cut costs. They did this by hiring part-time instructors without benefits and subcontracting staff positions to push down wages and to save the university money.

      • Murdoch accused of using crisis as ‘cover’ to cut research time

        Murdoch also declined to answer questions about its executives’ remuneration. Unlike most Australian vice-chancellors, Professor Leinonen has not agreed to a pay cut this year to contribute to savings, through senior staff have foregone this year’s scheduled increases.

    • Health/Nutrition

      • Can the Russian Health Care System Cope With the Coronavirus?
      • Sir, yes, sir Moscow lifted quarantine restrictions because of Russia’s upcoming constitutional plebiscite

        Following a conversation with Vladimir Putin, Moscow Mayor Sergey Sobyanin decided to lift lockdown restrictions in place due to the coronavirus pandemic ahead of schedule. Many assumed that the driving force behind this decision was to improve the results of the upcoming nationwide vote on constitutional amendments, which could extend Putin’s presidency to 2036. Meduza spoke to multiple sources in the government who now corroborate this version of events, saying that the authorities hope to lift Muscovites’ spirits ahead of the July 1 plebiscite by restoring their rights to outdoor walks, recreation, shopping, and services.

      • Carnegie Mellon Researchers Design ‘Nutrition Label’ For The Internet Of Broken Things

        Thanks to a laundry list of lazy companies, everything from your Barbie doll to your tea kettle are now hackable. Worse, these devices are now being quickly incorporated into some of the largest botnets ever built, resulting in devastating and historic DDoS attacks. In short: thanks to “internet of things” companies that prioritized profits over consumer privacy and the safety of the internet, we’re now facing a security and privacy dumpster fire that many experts believe will, sooner or later, result in even bigger security and privacy headaches than we’re seeing today.

      • The Brexit Crisis Led to Totally Incompetent Leadership at a Time of Unprecedented Calamity. Now We are Paying for It

        Britain is failing to cope with the Covid-19 epidemic as well as other countries in Europe and East Asia have. Out of 62,000 excess deaths in the UK, says former chief scientific officer Sir David King, “40,000 excess deaths could have been avoided if government had acted responsibly”.

      • Save the Insects, Save the Farmers, Save Ourselves: New Global Report Calls for End of Industrial Agriculture

        “The evidence is clear: pesticide use is wiping out insect populations and ecosystems around the world, and threatening food production.”

      • Why Covid-19 Racial Disparities Make the Case for Medicare for All

        Though it won’t solve all our problems, expanding Medicare to all people is an essential demand if we want to advance health equity in the United States.

      • Did the WHO just say that asymptomatic people with COVID-19 don’t transmit the coronavirus?

        I just want to preface this post by noting how amused I was yesterday at how people who have castigated the World Health Organization for its handling of the COVID-19 pandemic, who say the WHO is too beholden to China, who tell us that we shouldn’t take anything the WHO says seriously about the pandemic suddenly shifted to portraying the WHO as the font of scientific truth on COVID-19. The reason, as you might imagine, is that there was a news story. This time around, it was on CNBC, and it was entitled Asymptomatic spread of coronavirus is ‘very rare,’ WHO says. The reason these particular people learned to love the WHO again, as you might imagine, is because they are COVID-19 deniers, people who have downplayed the severity of the pandemic, who promote conspiracy theories about it, who refuse to wear masks or engage in social distancing, and the like. You’ll see why in this passage:

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Florence, Ala. Hit By Ransomware 12 Days After Being Alerted by KrebsOnSecurity [iophk: Windows TCO]

          On May 26, acting on a tip from Milwaukee, Wisc.-based cybersecurity firm Hold Security, KrebsOnSecurity contacted the office of Florence’s mayor to alert them that a Windows 10 system in their IT environment had been commandeered by a ransomware gang.

          Comparing the information shared by Hold Security dark web specialist Yuliana Bellini with the employee directory on the Florence website indicated the username for the computer that attackers had used to gain a foothold in the network on May 6 belonged to the city’s manager of information systems.

          My call was transferred to no fewer than three different people, none of whom seemed eager to act on the information. Eventually, I was routed to the non-emergency line for the Florence police department. When that call went straight to voicemail, I left a message and called the city’s emergency response team.

          That last effort prompted a gracious return call the following day from a system administrator for the city, who thanked me for the heads up and said he and his colleagues had isolated the computer and Windows network account Hold Security flagged as [cracked].

        • Security

          • Google Engineer Uncovers Holes In Linux’s Speculative Execution Mitigations

            There are some urgent fixes pending for the x86/x86_64 speculative execution handling for the Linux kernel following a Google security engineer discovering these issues, including one of the fixes address a situation that unfairly impacted AMD CPUs.

          • “CrossTalk” / SRBDS Is The Newest Side-Channel Vulnerability

            Details are still coming in but INTEL-SA-00320, a.k.a. “CrossTalk”, is the newest Intel side-channel CPU vulnerability.

            This latest side-channel vulnerability was disclosed today as part of Intel’s second Tuesday of the month reporting period along with several other security issues. INTEL-SA-00320 / CrossTalk is a Special Register Buffer Data Sampling “SRBDS” issue.

          • CrossTalk/SRBDS Shows Possibility Of Leaking Information Across Physical CPU Cores

            This morning I noted CrossTalk / SRBDS as the newest side-channel vulnerability following Intel’s monthly security advisories being sent out. It turns out Intel broke their own embargo on the disclosure and I happened to spot it quickly before they retracted it. In the hours since, the university researchers behind this CrossTalk vulnerability reached out and have provided an embargoed copy of the whitepaper. As of now, the formal disclosure time has passed so information on this new side-channel Intel CPU vulnerability is public and it shows for the first time that speculative execution can enable attackers to leak sensitive information across physical cores on Intel CPUs.

          • Intel SRBDS/CrossTalk Vulnerabilities Now Patched in All Supported Ubuntu Releases



            The security patch for the intel-microcode firmware addresses three hardware vulnerabilities that affect computers powered by Intel processors and running the Ubuntu 20.04 LTS, Ubuntu 19.10, Ubuntu 18.04 LTS, Ubuntu 16.04 LTS, or Ubuntu 14.04 ESM systems.

            These include a fix for the recently discovered SRBDS (Special Register Buffer Data Sampling) hardware vulnerability (CVE-2020-0543) also known as Crosstalk. This affects some Intel client and Xeon E3 processors, allowing a local attacker to expose sensitive information. A full list of affected Intel processors is available here.

          • CrossTalk is the latest Intel CPU security problem

            A fresh month, a fresh security problem. Today Intel disclosed “Special Register Buffer Data Sampling” (or SRBDS) which has been named CrossTalk by a bunch of researchers from VUSec. This is just another in the growing list of security problems Intel has suffered over the last few years.

            For the first time this enables clever attackers to leak sensitive information across cores on many different generations on Intel CPUs, bypassing previous security fixes against previous issues like Spectre and Meltdown. You can see a list of affected CPUs here, it’s unfortunately quite a large list covering a huge amount of Intel’s different CPU brands.

          • SUSE addresses Special Register Buffer Data Sampling (SRBDS) aka CrossTalk attack

            Today Intel and security researchers published a number of security issues covering various Intel hardware and software components in their IPU 2020.1 release.
            One of those issues is a side-channel information leak attack against special registers, like the Intel CPU random register. Memory can not be read out, only previously generated random values could be read.
            This side channel issue is called “Special Register Buffer Data Sampling” (SRBDS) by Intel, and “CrossTalk” by the researchers from VUSec Amsterdam.

          • Arm CPUs impacted by rare side-channel attack
          • The “special register buffer data sampling” hardware vulnerability

            We have not had a new CPU vulnerability for a little while — a situation that was clearly too good to last. The mainline kernel has just merged mitigations for the “special register buffer data sampling” vulnerability which, in short, allows an attacker to spy on the random numbers obtained by others. In particular, the results of the RDRAND instruction can be obtained via a speculative attack.

          • How Misconfigured Containers May Create Cybersecurity Issues For Companies
          • 2 Simple Steps for Securing Your Linux Desktop

            When you first connect a freshly installed desktop machine to the Internet, there are several important things to bear in mind. Two obvious considerations of securing a desktop machine include frequently running package updates and configuring a few firewall rules to help keep the bad guys out.

            In this article, we’ll look at these two steps from both a desktop perspective and, to provide a bit more context, we’ll also look at what’s going on within the system that’s running the desktop on the command line.

          • Security updates for Wednesday

            Security updates have been issued by Arch Linux (chromium, firefox, gnutls, python-django, thunderbird, tomcat7, tomcat8, and tomcat9), CentOS (unbound), Debian (bluez, firefox-esr, kernel, and linux-4.9), Oracle (kernel), Red Hat (.NET Core, .NET Core 3.1, kernel, kernel-rt, libexif, microcode_ctl, pcs, and virt:rhel), SUSE (gnutls, java-1_7_0-ibm, kernel, microcode_ctl, nodejs10, nodejs8, rubygem-bundler, texlive, texlive-filesystem, thunderbird, and ucode-intel), and Ubuntu (intel-microcode, kernel, libjpeg-turbo, linux, linux-aws, linux-aws-5.3, linux-azure, linux-azure-5.3, linux-gcp, linux-gcp-5.3, linux-gke-5.3, linux-hwe, linux-kvm, linux-oracle, linux-oracle-5.3, linux, linux-aws, linux-aws-hwe, linux-azure, linux-azure-4.15, linux-gcp, linux-gke-4.15, linux-hwe, linux-kvm, linux-oem, linux-oracle, linux, linux-aws, linux-azure, linux-gcp, linux-kvm, linux-oracle, linux, linux-aws, linux-kvm, linux, linux-lts-trusty, and linux-gke-5.0, linux-oem-osp1).

          • Microsoft Patch Tuesday, June 2020 Edition

            Microsoft today released software patches to plug at least 129 security holes in its Windows operating systems and supported software, by some accounts a record number of fixes in one go for the software giant. None of the bugs addressed this month are known to have been exploited or detailed prior to today, but there are a few vulnerabilities that deserve special attention — particularly for enterprises and employees working remotely.

            [...]

            Before you update with this month’s patch batch, please make sure you have backed up your system and/or important files. It’s not uncommon for a wonky Windows update to hose one’s system or prevent it from booting properly, and some updates even have known to erase or corrupt files. So do yourself a favor and backup before installing any patches. Windows 10 even has some built-in tools to help you do that, either on a per-file/folder basis or by making a complete and bootable copy of your hard drive all at once.

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • The Police Have Been Spying on Black Reporters and Activists for Years. I Know Because I’m One of Them.

              MEMPHIS, Tenn. — On Aug. 20, 2018, the first day of a federal police surveillance trial, I discovered that the Memphis Police Department was spying on me.

              The ACLU of Tennessee had sued the MPD, alleging that the department was in violation of a 1978 consent decree barring surveillance of residents for political purposes.

            • ‘Your Turn, Amazon and Microsoft’: Civil Liberties Advocates Applaud IBM Decision to Ditch Facial Recognition

              “This huge IBM move will force other large tech companies to take a stand, even if their silence is their statement.”

            • Facebook’s revamped news section launches in the US with a focus on local sources

              In an online FAQ detailing the structure of the new Facebook News, the company outlines its editorial strategy, including which publishers it decides to promote and what metrics it uses to pick one story from one outlet over another. To do so, the company is employing a human team and vetting sources through a new effort called the News Page Index. “The team is transparent about the following guidelines and will make curatorial choices independently, not at the direction of Facebook, publishers or advertisers,” the FAQ explains. “They will apply the same guidelines and criteria to our coverage about Facebook as we would to any other company or industry.”

            • Signal can now transfer your chat history to a new iPhone

              The new process is an attempt to find a balance between convenience and security. The process works via a QR code, which your new device generates and your old device scans. Then, your devices establish a direct Wi-Fi connection (or Bluetooth if Wi-Fi isn’t available), and transfer your data through your local network without the data ever passing through a third-party cloud server. Because the transfer happens locally, even large transfers can be completed quickly, Signal says.

            • Your next upgrade deserves an upgrade

              Signal iOS now includes a new feature that makes it possible to switch to a brand-new iPhone or iPad while securely transferring Signal information from your existing iOS device. As with every new Signal feature, the process is end-to-end encrypted and designed to protect your privacy. Transfers also occur over a local connection (similar to AirDrop), so even large migrations can be completed quickly.

    • Defence/Aggression

      • Israel’s Left and Black Lives Matters

        A message to Israel’s ‘left’. The Jewish people are the Chosen Ones, but only in your heads. Your history of oppression by mostly Christian forces throughout history has been well documented. You have suffered incredible harm to your population. Your enemies have succeeded at times in decimating your people’s numbers in their domain, but your culture continues wherever you go and however many you are. That is your strength of survival. Related words have been immortalized through life experiences and literature. Ghetto was first used in Venice in the 1500s to describe the restricted area for its Jewish population. Holocaust has been used to describe such catastrophes as in nuclear holocaust but of course, thanks to people like Eli Wiesel, it has been appropriated to have almost the exclusive meaning of the Jewish genocide of WW2.

        [...]

        Your Israeli left, in the voice of Isaac Herzog, cannot understand that the oppression experienced by black Americans in the US has equivalence among the Palestinian population under occupation by Israel. One likely reason is that you have no history of fighting for other people’s rights. Here in the US Jewish leaders and individuals have long been champions of racial justice and fighting such oppression among black Americans, Hispanic migrants, and so many on the lowest level of our economic ladder. That is OUR Jewish culture. When you read about the history of the NAACP, you read about Henry Moscowitz and W.E.B. DuBois forming the organization. For the labor movement we start off with Samuel Gompers and Daniel DeLeon, a Sephardic leader in the Socialist Workers Party whose advocacy for workers’ rights falls right in line with the Party. Rabbi Glaser was a long time active supporter of Cesar Chavez and the United Farm Workers. The list of Jews involved in social and peace movements is endless. That’s not to say we don’t have our embarrassments, too. Look at Jered Kushner, Henry Kissinger, Geraldo Riviera, etc.

      • Saudi Arms Sales, the Ghost of a Reporter, and America’s Oil War in Yemen

        The brutal killing of George Floyd by police, followed by the president’s calls for military intervention against protestors, are causing words like “dictatorship,” “authoritarianism,” and even “fascism” to become part of the national discourse. But the president has been dismantling constitutional safeguards for a long time, and the racism he and his administration have broadcast across the nation extends around the world, too.

      • Defund the Police, Defund the Military

        For too long, we have let cynical politicians and business leaders divide and rule us, funding police and the Pentagon over real human needs, pitting us against each other at home and leading us off to wars against our neighbors abroad. 

      • ‘Powerful Advocate for a Progressive Agenda’: Sanders Endorses Jamaal Bowman’s Bid to Unseat Hawkish Democrat Eliot Engel

        “Jamaal understands that low-income families are locked out of opportunity and a decent life due to a system that is rigged to benefit the wealthy.”

      • Jamaal Bowman Wants to Spend Less on the Pentagon and More on the Bronx

        New York educator Jamaal Bowman’s Democratic primary challenge to 16-term Representative Eliot Engel is a fight over the direction of the party that has the potential to upend another veteran congressman, just as Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez did two years ago when she defeated New York Democrat Joe Crowley.

      • Trump Wants to ‘Dominate’ but Can’t Take the Backlash

        Donald Trump walks across the White House South Lawn on June 5, 2020. (Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images)

      • Police Violence Has Brought America’s Forever Wars Home

        From their front porches, regular citizens watched a cordon of cops sweep down their peaceful street in Minneapolis, Minn. Rankled at being filmed, the cops exceeded their authority and demanded that people go inside their houses. When some of them didn’t obey quickly enough, the order—one heard so many times in the streets of Iraqi cities and in the villages of Afghanistan—was issued: “Light ’em up.” And so “disobedient” Americans found themselves on the receiving end of non-lethal rounds for the “crime” of watching the police from those porches.

      • Libyan doctors battle on two dangerous fronts: COVID-19 and war

        After tending to the war-wounded for more than a year, Libya’s doctors and nurses are facing a new battle in COVID-19. It’s a fight they are suiting up for despite the fact their salaries often go unpaid, their hospitals are regularly shelled, and the country at large is woefully underprepared for the global pandemic.

        Since last April, eastern forces allied with general Khalifa Haftar have been fighting groups loyal to the Tripoli-based and UN-backed Government of National Accord (GNA), forcing around 200,000 people to flee their homes, including 18,500 over the past weekend alone. The UN documented at least 64 civilian deaths and 67 injuries from the violence in the first four months of this year, and many more fighters have been filling up the country’s hospitals.

        There are reports a ceasefire may be in the works, but peace talks have so far brought no respite for either the Libyans or the hundreds of thousands of migrants and refugees who often find themselves caught in the crossfire. It has been especially difficult for doctors, nurses, and paramedics: the UN says that since the start of this 2020, at least 15 separate attacks have hit health facilities or ambulances and injured healthcare workers, who were already working in a system short on staff, medication, and supplies.

        Libya announced its first COVID-19 case on 24 March, and as of 8 June there were 332 confirmed cases, and five deaths. Around 200 of those infections are in the southern city of Sabha. But, with testing extremely limited, many fear the real numbers are much higher. And the virus is putting new pressure on an already stressed public healthcare network that can’t ensure its workers are safe and is struggling to coordinate a coherent response to COVID-19 between different warring authorities across the country.

      • In the news: Death of Burundian president may not bring change

        Officials said the 55-year-old Nkurunziza, who was due to stand down in August after 15 years in power, suffered a heart attack.

        With his election victory last month, Evariste Ndayishimiye had already become Burundi’s president-elect, but the expectation was that Nkurunziza would be the power behind the throne – a strategy adopted by former president Joseph Kabila in the neighbouring Democratic Republic of Congo.

        Nkurunziza’s political significance seemed cemented when he was awarded the title of “Paramount Leader, Champion of Patriotism and Leadership Core” by the ruling CNDD-FDD party – along with a generous pension.

    • Environment

      • Big Green Meltdown Over Planet of the Humans

        As a former environmental activist and environmental journalist with a brief appearance in Jeff Gibbs’ film Planet of the Humans—I was the guy trespassing at the biomass facility—I’m blown away by the amount of discussion the film has generated.

      • Nukes in Space: the Extinction Rebellion Yet to Be

        An article published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences recently argued that more species are going extinct due to human activity than occurred 66 million years ago, when an asteroid or similar hit the Earth.

      • New Orleans Activists Call out Environmental Racism Alongside Police Brutality in Week of Protests

        “What they inflicted on us was a slow violence. What is happening every day to these Black men on the street every day is violence. But it is all relative,” said Perkins, who lives in a house built on a toxic Superfund site in the Upper 9th Ward’s Gordon Plaza, a Black neighborhood. “That is why I’m here connecting the dots. Violence is violence. Racism is racism, whether it is environmental racism, whether it is racial profiling, whether you walk on the streets and get your brains knocked out by some guy who has taken an oath to uphold the law.”

      • Wildlife/Nature

    • Finance

      • Big Bank CEOs Want to ‘Listen’ to Black Communities. They Should Return Their Stolen Wealth Instead.

        There’s a whole lot of Wall Street listening going on, but not much doing.

      • In Age of Unrest and Economic Decline, Critics Cry Foul as GOP Refuse to Provide Additional Covid-19 Aid for Suffering Communities

        “Communities of color can’t wait for you to slow walk more coronavirus aid.”

      • “Essential Labor, Expendable Lives”: Mass Transit Workers Worry About Safety as NYC Begins to Reopen

        As New York City begins to partially reopen, we look at what it means for the nation’s largest public transportation system. “It’s a very stressful and dangerous situation,” says Seth Rosenberg, a subway operator, shop steward with the Transport Workers Union Local 100 and a member of a small coalition of transit workers called Local 100 Fightback. “The safety measures are not in place to protect transit workers or riders.”

      • Amid Protests & Pandemic, 200+ Unhoused People Sheltering in Minneapolis Hotel Now Face Eviction

        We go to Minneapolis, where the community has taken over a Sheraton hotel to provide shelter to more than 200 unhoused people amid protests and the pandemic. Now they face eviction. “Using hotels for emergency housing is an obvious answer,” says Rosemary Fister, community organizer. “They are largely vacant as we enter an economic depression in the midst of a global pandemic.”

      • Over 200 Unhoused People Sheltering in Minneapolis Hotel Now Face Eviction

        We go to Minneapolis, where the community has taken over a Sheraton hotel to provide shelter to more than 200 unhoused people amid protests and the pandemic. Now they face eviction. “Using hotels for emergency housing is an obvious answer,” says Rosemary Fister, community organizer. “They are largely vacant as we enter an economic depression in the midst of a global pandemic.”

      • Racist Violence Can’t Be Separated From the Violence of Neoliberal Capitalism

        As a renewed Black Lives Matter uprising fills the streets following a spate of high-profile police murders, the state-sanctioned murder of Black people continues on other fronts as well, including public health and economic injustice. In addition to protesting the widespread killing of Black people by police, activists have called attention to the systematic abandonment of Black communities as a function of both white supremacy and neoliberal capitalism. While some mainstream voices have focused on condemning the looting happening in the streets, many activists have called attention to the much larger-scale looting perpetrated by neoliberal capitalism against marginalized communities.

      • Police Are Using Implications of Drug Use to Justify Killing

        Protests continue to escalate throughout the country in the weeks after Officer Derek Chauvin from the Minneapolis Police Department knelt on George Floyd’s neck for eight minutes and 46 seconds — including nearly three minutes in which Floyd was non-responsive — killing him. Many elements of Floyd’s death mirror previous incidents throughout the U.S. in which police killed Black people. Like the killings of both Eric Garner and Michael Brown, the initial interaction between Floyd and police escalated from a call about tobacco products. In words reminiscent of Garner, who was strangled to death by Officer Daniel Pantaleo on Staten Island, Floyd gasped “I can’t breathe” while his life was taken from him. Floyd’s killing follows the March killing of Breonna Taylor, a 26-year-old Black woman, who, like both Botham Jean and Atatiana Jefferson, was killed by police officers in her own apartment. But Floyd’s case is also beginning to resemble other cases in one particularly notable way: references to drug use are being used to implicate Floyd and exculpate the officers.

      • Economic Collapse and Unemployment Councils – Then and Now

        Hunger, homelessness, and evictions were features of the Great Depression in the United States. Jobs disappeared and working conditions deteriorated. Some “250,000 teenagers were on the road.” And how many others? By 1933 one third of farm families had lost their farms. Unemployment that year was 25 percent. The lives of working people were devastated.

      • Senate Investigation Criticizes the IRS for Failing to Oversee Free Filing Program

        A Senate investigation has found that the IRS has conducted little oversight of its partnership with the for-profit tax prep industry to offer free tax filing, and calls for the agency to increase funding to promote the free option.

        “It shouldn’t be the case that Americans who are eligible to file their taxes for free end up paying substantial fees each year, but our bipartisan investigation makes clear that is what is happening,” said Sen. Tom Carper, D-Del., who produced the memo with Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio.

      • COVID-19 Unveils Need for Fair Taxation Movement at the State Level

        States must take the opportunity to dramatically rebalance their tax codes, making safety net programs truly re-distributive. If the federal government hits the gas while states hit the brakes, we will get nowhere fast.

      • Neoliberal Capitalism Depends on White Supremacy

        American oligarchs have led a five decade-long, well-funded campaign to convince whites that safety net programs, taxes on the wealthy, unions, and government regulations were not in the interest of whites but were just designed to help blacks and other minorities.

      • Jeff Bezos on track to become first man to steal a trillion dollars from his employees

        A new report suggests that Amazon founder Jeff Bezos could become the first man on earth to successfully steal a trillion dollars from his employees.

        “Tim Cook, Elon Musk, the Waltons – they’ve all hoarded money that should have been used to pay their employees a living wage,” said Mariah Blackstone, the analyst who compiled the data on Bezos. “But Jeff’s multi-pronged wealth extraction system is unparalleled. He underpays his workforce, deprives them of any amenity that could cost him money, and he doesn’t pay a cent in taxes that could be used to help the employees he’s abusing. It’s triple robbery, and it’s brilliant.”

        Bezos’s innovation grows his net worth by a whopping 34% every year. That puts him on track to become the first trillionaire wage thief by 2026, when either an alive Bezos or his guillotined head will turn 62 years old.

        “When you adjust for inflation, John D. Rockefeller stole way more money,” Blackstone continued. “But Rockefeller really missed out when he failed to monetize the Spanish Flu – an opportunity that Jeff seized with the gleeful, coldblooded zeal of a carpet viper.”

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • Paradigms Take Years to Shift

        Don’t let anyone tell you the work is done.

      • Regional authorities shut down construction of controversial landfill in Russia’s Far North

        The authorities in Russia’s far northern Arkhangelsk region have decided to shut down construction of a major landfill near the Shiyes train station, located on the border with the neighboring Komi Republic. 

      • How the Saudis, the Qataris, and the Emiratis Took Washington

        A monumental lobbying battle over American foreign policy.

      • Step right up, ladies and gentlemen! Russia’s authorities pull out all the stops to mobilize for a delayed plebiscite that could extend Putin’s presidency to 2036

        Over the next few weeks, the Russian authorities will have their hands full. The nation is simultaneously withdrawing coronavirus quarantine restrictions and preparing to hold a plebiscite on July 1 to vote on constitutional amendments that could extend Vladimir Putin’s presidency to 2036. Judging by the scale of efforts by election officials, the Kremlin seeks a sweeping victory in the vote. Russians can expect all manner of enticements and inducements to participate: state employees are being compelled to mobilize their friends and family, skeptics are being lured with smartphones and apartments awarded at trivia quizzes, and every voter is being promised a goody bag with coveted sanitary supplies.

      • ‘Chilling Harbinger’ for November as Georgia Primary Plagued by Long Lines and Voting Machines Problems

        After one voter waited over two hours to cast a ballot, she said, “It gives you a voter suppression-type feeling.”

      • Progressive Democrat Charles Booker Gains Steam Against ‘Pro-Trump Democrat’ Amy McGrath in Bid to Take Down McConnell

        “This moment in our fractious history seems to call beyond politics, and Charles Booker has risen to meet it.”

      • Joe Biden and Top Democrats Won’t Defund Police — But Our Cities Can

        Facing attacks from President Trump, Joe Biden’s campaign said on Monday that the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee would not answer the call from hundreds of thousands of people who have taken to the streets to defund local police departments. However, most local police departments are run by city governments, and momentum toward abolishing policing as we know it today is building at the local level.

      • Liberals: Don’t Be Afraid of Calls to Defund the Police

        As The Nation’s designated liberal hand-wringer, I admit I’ve been concerned about the rapid spread of the demand to “defund the police,” which sociologist Alex S. Vitale argued for persuasively in our digital pages last week. I have worried that its radicalism jeopardizes the growing mainstream support for police reform in the wake of George Floyd’s apparent murder by Minneapolis police two weeks ago, and the subsequent police violence against those protesting that crime. It has, of course, become a simplistic “gotcha” question for some reporters and news anchors to shoot at Democratic politicians, especially since a veto-proof majority of the Minneapolis City Council pledged to disband its police department Sunday.

      • The Descent of America

        Complaints about American decline have been commonplace since at least the Vietnam War era.

      • Bradley Spent Millions on Voter Suppression, Union Busters, Climate Deniers, and Right-Wing Media in 2019

        As part of Bradley’s strategic vision, it invests in groups to defund and dismantle unions, to fuel a web of climate change deniers, and to prop up right-wing media.

      • Study Shows Major E-Voting System Open To Numerous Hacking Attacks

        Another day, another electronic voting system that’s simply not up to the task.

      • No, The Resignation Of NYT Editor James Bennet Does Not Mean American Newsrooms Have ‘Turned Into College Campuses’

        On Friday we wrote about the uproar regarding the terrible op-ed piece by Senator Tom Cotton in the New York Times, calling for the use of the US military against protesters in the US. There was widespread anger against the decision to run the op-ed, and then a backlash from some who argued that this showed the people complaining about it were somehow “unwilling to listen” to viewpoints they disagreed with. In my piece, I argued that if the NY Times didn’t publish my op-ed on why the Opinions Editor James Bennet was an incompetent dweeb, then clearly, they hated free speech and were unwilling to confront difficult ideas.

      • Trump is Not the Problem

        The Trump-bashing among the slate of Democratic candidates for president never got beyond the occasional blurb that Trump is not the problem. An extended discussion about what this means was neither compatible with the time limit on responses in the debates nor the agenda limits of the candidates themselves. Trump’s outrageous tweets and comments to the press of course make him the problem and monopolize the space and time for debating issues. Week after week since he was elected the media has been consumed with something he said or did, but it hasn’t been very successful at unmaking Trump’s making of himself the problem and replacing it with a discussion of how and why he was elected in the first place. And now that the longest-tenured moderate is left standing and the most promising progressive panting, there’s little chance this issue will be debated.

      • Hong Kong’s ‘pro-democracy’ movement allies with far-right US politicians that seek to crush Black Lives Matter

        As a Hong Kong protest leader promotes far-right condemnations of US anti-racism demonstrations and activists shut down a Black Lives Matter rally in the city, Hong Kong organizers forge close ties with hardline Republicans in Washington.

      • Investigation Shows Governor’s Claims That Democrats Tried To Hack The Georgia Election Were Bullshit

        Georgia Governor Brian Kemp is very involved with the electorate. Well, perhaps not that involved with the residents of the state, but he does seem to keep a very close — and very partisan — eye on election security. Election security is important, especially as more states move to electronic ballots, but Kemp has spent most of the last four years using election security as a political football to score points with.

      • The Deadly Fox News-Trump Syndicate

        As the coronavirus crisis rages on, Fox News is contributing almost as much to the deaths and disease as is Trump’s White House.Trump spouts a shocking amount of misinformation during his daily press briefings, but it’s Fox News’ equally misleading coverage of the crisis that closes the lethal circuit of lies. It’s easy to feel outraged and defeated by Fox News. (“I can’t believe they’re saying that! How are they getting away with this?”) But it’s important to understand its formula for misleading Americans, particularly in the crisis we’re in. The formula goes like this: First, deny there’s a problem. Lay the groundwork for later conspiracy theories by calling it “a hoax.” Blame political opponents for “using” the issue to make Trump look bad. Mock anyone taking it seriously, and downplay the consequences.Then, when deaths mount and the coronavirus can no longer be denied, promote the same dangerous miracle cures Trump promotes.Third, attack the experts. Question what public-health experts recommend, such as social distancing. Question whether the death toll from Covid-19 is even true, and broadcast misleading graphics. Attack the experts themselves, and parade around alternative “experts” to promote an array of conspiracy theories.Fourth, deflect attention from Trump’s botched response by blaming others.  Blame China! As the virus hits black and brown communities especially hard, trot out the white supremacists. If nothing else works, revise history.Finally, make reopening the economy about “freedom,” and attack Democratic governors who are trying to keep people safe. That’s Fox News’s tried-and-true formula, folks: Deny, promote quack remedies, attack the experts, blame others, and change the subject to “freedom.” It works for Fox. It keeps Fox viewers. It helps protect Trump.But it is making a deadly calamity even more deadly. Polls show that a majority of Republicans think it’s perfectly safe to go to establishments like nail salons and dine-in restaurants, and a new study found that Sean Hannity’s viewers were less likely to adhere to social distancing guidelines. Meanwhile, a conspiracy theory peddled by Tucker Carlson made it all the way to the White House, where it fell on Trump’s receptive ears and led him to yank a multimillion-dollar grant to an organization on the frontlines of coronavirus research.In theory, the FCC prohibits broadcasting false information about a catastrophe if the broadcaster knows the information is false and will cause substantial “public harm” if aired. But Trump’s FCC won’t do a thing, and Fox News has no broadcast ethics. It has no journalistic integrity.If this formula of deceit shows us anything, it’s that they know what they’re doing, and they don’t care who they hurt. So, what can you do? First, make a ruckus. Speak out. Write letters to your local paper, and local Fox News outlets. That’s precisely what forced Fox to cut ties with Trish Regan, and with 5G Conspiracy peddlers Diamond and Silk.Second, boycott Fox’s major advertisers. That helped get Bill O’Reilly off the air.Third: leverage your power. Correct Fox’s lies when you see them. Share this video with Fox News viewers you care about. You might just save a life.

      • Ultimately, All Monuments are Ozymandias

        The great philosopher John Stuart Mill probably did more than anyone to map out the proper boundaries of the individual and the state in the western model of political democracy. Furthermore, he talked not just of the state but of societal behaviour as it impacts on individuals. Through the power of thought his influence on the development of the modern world has been enormous, even if many have never heard of him. He was four generations ahead of his time; but that is in part true because his own writings helped shape the future. This from the New Yorker is a fine example of the received view of Mill among the modern liberal intelligentsia:

      • It’s Time for White NFL Players to Take the Knee

        Jalen Tolliver of the Kansas City Chiefs kneels before a preseason game in August 2019 in Green Bay, Wis. (Quinn Harris / Getty Images)

        The NFL season, come pandemic or revolution, will almost certainly begin this fall—and it is going to be “put up or shut up” time for the league’s white players. Here’s the reality: Many black players will be taking a knee during the national anthem to protest police violence and racial inequity. After a remarkable video made by black NFL players condemning the league’s tepid support for the Black Lives Matter protests, Roger Goodell said in a video statement, among other things, “We, the National Football League, admit we were wrong for not listening to NFL players earlier and encourage all to speak out and peacefully protest.”

      • The Black Lives Matter Revolution Can’t Be Co-Opted By Police and Lawmakers

        It may be too soon to call this a revolution, but it has the makings to be one. That’s exactly why those in power — including the police — are shook [sic], and are working tirelessly to destroy this wave of unrest before it becomes a tsunami they cannot control.

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • Senators ask FCC to redefine Section 230 after Trump’s executive order

        Four United States senators have called on the Federal Communications Commission to take a “fresh look” at Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, a rule that protects websites from liability for user-generated content. Sens. Marco Rubio (R-FL), Josh Hawley (R-MO), Kelly Loeffler (R-GA), and Kevin Cramer (R-ND) signed a letter to FCC chairman Ajit Pai, asking the agency to “clearly define the framework under which technology firms, including social media companies, receive protections under Section 230.”

    • Freedom of Information/Freedom of the Press

      • Where Journalism Is Planted, Democracy Blooms

        Journalists and land defenders send warning to the Brazilian government.

      • Digital Security Advice for Journalists Covering the Protests Against Police Violence

        This guide is an overview of digital security considerations specific to journalists covering protests. For EFF’s comprehensive guide to digital security, including advice for activists and protesters, visit ssd.eff.org. Legal advice in this post is specific to the United States.

        As the international protests against police killings enter their third week, the public has been exposed to shocking videos of law enforcement wielding violence against not only demonstrators, but also the journalists who are tasked with documenting this historic moment.

      • Josh Schulte, former CIA engineer, indicted again in WikiLeaks case following mistrial

        The Department of Justice on Tuesday renewed its case against Joshua Adam Schulte, a former CIA engineer suspected of being the source of the biggest leak in the agency’s history.

        A superseding indictment charging Schulte in connection with leaking classified CIA material to the WikiLeaks website was filed as expected in Manhattan federal court, where months earlier a mistrial was declared after a jury was unable to reach a verdict upon deliberating for days on whether or not to convict him over the same alleged criminal conduct.

        [...]

        Indeed, the superseding indictment filed Tuesday charges Schulte with nine counts in all, including charges of illegally accessing, gathering and transmitting national defense information, as well as one count of obstruction, two counts of accessing a computer without authorization and two counts of transmitting a harmful computer code.

        Public defenders representing Schulte did not immediately return a message requesting comment.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • Eight Minutes, Forty-Six Seconds

        Eight minutes, forty-six seconds is a long time: a long time when you are meditating; a long time while waiting for a protest march to pass; a long time with your finger on the video button of your phone following a scene of terror; an unimaginable time when you are being crushed by human weights on your neck, perhaps detecting some mildly agitated bystanders through the haze of your dying brain.

      • Turd Blossom Surfaces Again

        Just when you thought reality-based thinking couldn’t take any more hits and still stand, up pops Karl Rove — like an epoophany — in the middle of the cesspool of clowns called Washington.

      • As Uprising Spreads Across US, Scholars Argue Economic Transformation and Solidarity Key to Achieving Racial Justice

        “Our only hope for our collective liberation,” writes Michelle Alexander, “is a politics of deep solidarity rooted in love.”

      • ‘This Is the Problem’ Say Critics as Police Union Recruits Fired Officers to New Jobs in Florida

        “Systemic racism in action.”

      • Activists Catalog Nearly 600 Videos of Officer Violence Against Protesters

        President Donald Trump on Monday applauded U.S. police officers as “great, great people” who “have been letting us live in peace,” praise that is starkly odds with the direct experience of protesters and journalists on the ground who in recent days have witnessed — and, in many cases, captured on video — cops beating and tear-gassing peaceful demonstrators in the streets demanding justice for the killing of George Floyd.

      • Police Departments Are Using Social Media to Remake Their Image

        Social media has been intrinsic to building awareness of police brutality — spreading horrific images of targeted misconduct to millions and making the Black Lives Matter movement mainstream.

      • At least 1,000 people protest police actions in Russia’s North Caucasus

        Residents of the town of Manas, located in the Dagestan republic in Russia’s North Caucasus, came out in protests on June 9, after local police arrested several people for violating the self-isolation regime, Caucasian Knot reports. 

      • Russian actor facing up to 12 years in prison following fatal car crash in Moscow

        Russian law enforcement have launched a criminal case against popular actor Mikhail Efremov following a fatal car accident in central Moscow on the evening of June 8.

      • ‘Truly Despicable’: Critics Pounce After Trump Tweets Conspiracy Theories About 75-Year-Old Victim of Police Brutality Martin Gugino

        “Trump blames victim of police brutality for police brutality.”

      • Malcolm or MLK?

        Two weeks ago, the world witnessed a murder of an innocent Black man, George Floyd, what many, including Jesse Jackson, called a “public lynching” in broad daylight, at the hands of a white policeman. It was a brutal killing by the manner in which Minneapolis policeman, Derek Chauvin, pressed his knee into Floyd’s neck, slowly and viciously forcing the life out Floyd for almost 9 minutes. While Chauvin’s fellow officers, by not coming to Floyd’s aid, were complicit to the crime. There was no need for Chauvin to have subdued Floyd in such a cruel and purposeful way until Floyd could no longer breathe, especially since Floyd had already been restrained. Nor, did Floyd have any weapon. Nor had he committed any crime warranting such force. In a video captured by a teenager, Floyd could be heard stating he could not breathe, and calling out for his deceased mother. Since 2014, there have been other police killings of African-Americans with no consequences for the police officers involved.

      • Support for Uprisings Against Police Brutality Jumped 20 Points in One Week

        New polling data released on Tuesday demonstrates widespread support in favor of uprisings happening in cities across the United States in the wake of the police killing of George Floyd two weeks ago.

      • Paradigms Take Years to Shift

        Defund Police. Invest in Black Lives. What just weeks ago was a slogan is fast becoming law.

      • ‘Police Have Been Letting Us Live in Peace,’ Says Trump as Activists Catalogue Nearly 600 Videos of Officer Violence Against Protesters

        “This kind of documentation serves as a counter-narrative to repeated denials of responsibility from the police, who are routinely claiming protesters were the ones to grow violent first.”

      • Russian LGBTQ activist charged with distributing pornography

        The Russian Investigative Committee has charged artist and LGBTQ rights activist Yulia Tsvetkova with the criminal distribution of pornography. She could now face up to six years in prison.

      • How We Can Start Dismantling Systemic Racism

        We are in the midst of a health crisis, an economic crisis, and a social crisis—and systemic racism is at the heart of each. The day after George Floyd died in Minneapolis police custody, the Covid-19 death toll in the United States passed 100,000. Two days after that, the unemployment number passed 40 million. Throughout the pandemic, black people have been infected and have lost their jobs at higher rates than white people.

      • U.S. Foreign Aid Agency Defends Political Appointees Who Wrote Anti-LGBT, Anti-Islam Posts

        The top official at the U.S. foreign aid agency defended three political appointees whose past social media posts and writings include attacks on LGBT people and Muslims, saying they were “committed to enacting the policies of President Donald J. Trump.”

        ProPublica reported on Friday that Merritt Corrigan had recently taken up a prominent position at the U.S. Agency for International Development. Corrigan has a history of online posts denouncing liberal democracy and feminism, and she has said the United States is in the clutches of a “homo-empire” pushing a “tyrannical LGBT agenda.”

      • Police Reform Was Never Going to Be Easy—But Now’s the Time

        What has been missing is will, not ideas. And now, as the demonstrations reveal, Americans—black and white, young and old—are demanding change.

      • Reporting Curfews Through Official Eyes

        For cops, protest is a problem and silence the solution.

      • ‘Who Does This Protect?’ Minnesota Authorities Admit Officers Slashed Car Tires During Protests

        “Medics over there. News crews. Random people that were just here to protest and—tires slashed.”

      • Beyond Prisons: How Do We Get Through This? feat. Kay Whitlock & Donna Murch

        Donna Murch and Kay Whitlock join Beyond Prisons to think through the question “how do we get through this?”

        Donna posed this question on social media in April as the COVID-19 pandemic peaked and motivated this conversation. We begin by thinking through who the “we” is in that question, and then we attempt to define what we mean by “getting through this.”

      • DACA Recipients “Want to Be in the Streets Building Solidarity” But ICE Arrests 3 at Phoenix Protest

        Immigration agents are facing accusations of targeting protesters who are recipients of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA. Police in Phoenix, Arizona, arrested community activist Máxima Guerrero as she was leaving a protest on May 30 with a group of legal observers. She was one of three DACA recipients arrested over that weekend in Phoenix. We get an update from Sandra Castro Solis with the Phoenix-based grassroots immigrant justice group Puente Human Rights Movement, who says that despite the risks, “we’re in a moment where people want to be out in the streets building that solidarity.”

      • Over the Rainbow: Paths of Resistance After George Floyd

        It has been an extraordinary week. On the heels of a pandemic and months-long lockdown, a nationwide uprising erupted in response to the brutal killing of George Floyd. In some 75 cities across at least 16 states, and around the world, militant, multiracial gatherings of thousands of rightfully-enraged people overwhelmed police forces, prevented arrests, forced the evacuation of, and burned, a police precinct, and damaged and burned dozens of buildings. Mainstream news reporters from around the world were arrested and fired upon with rubber bullets on live television. Police SU Vs drove into crowds of people. It has been the most extensive, and the most threatening, explosion of popular rage against the machine since the uprisings of 1967-8.

      • End Police, With the Utmost Respect for Farmers

        Perhaps you won’t believe it
        Incredulous as you are
        But my father’s father fought
        In the army of the Tsar

        In 1916 he deserted
        And would’ve been caught, and shot
        Lucky for us, though,

        Before they could get him

      • Immigration Agents Target People at Police Brutality Protests, Including a U.S. Citizen Military Vet

        As protests against police brutality continue nationwide, immigrant rights advocates are sounding the alarm over the presence of Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents at some of the demonstrations. A viral video showed a group of ICE agents working with the New York City Police Department to detain a protester at a George Floyd rally in New York City last week, and advocates say agents held the man on the ground as they pointed three guns at him and handcuffed and searched him. He was reportedly released after agents found a military veteran’s ID on him, and is a U.S. citizen of Puerto Rican descent. We speak with Mizue Aizeki, deputy director at the Immigrant Defense Project.

      • Peaceful Protests Around The Nation Are Being Greeted By Police Violence. Remind Me Again How Peaceful Protests Are Better?

        I have written at least two (admittedly) incendiary posts for this site responding to the response (and — one level further — commenters’ responses) to the killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin. Chauvin has been arrested and is now facing a shifting set of charges — some of which are unlikely to be sustained. Minneapolis is still burning. And it will probably burn again once the justice system is done with what’s left of Chauvin and his criminal charges.

      • Black Lives Matter Protests and Posters
      • Chicago Mayor Says City’s Police Officers Will Be ‘Stripped Of Their Powers’ If They Turn Off Their Cameras

        Civic leaders are finally at least talking tough about reforming the police departments they’ve barely overseen for years. Protests — some of them violent — have erupted all over the nation, ensuring very few law enforcement agencies can consider themselves above the fray… or above reproach.

      • Designing Technology to Protect Civil Liberties During the Pandemic

        Thoughtful citizens who want to protect democracy and public health should take a pro-science and pro-civil liberties stance and avoid succumbing to fear and sloganeering.

      • Media Are Slowly Starting to Be Serious About Police Violence

        As the George Floyd protests against police violence erupted around the nation, a massive amount of evidence of police brutality was widely captured through social media. Unfortunately,  very little of it made it to mainstream outlets until much later.

      • Media Are Slowly Starting to Be Serious About Police Violence

        Only sustained media attention to such abuses will create the conditions for ongoing calls for justice to be answered.

      • US faces allegations of human rights abuses over treatment of protesters

        The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) on Monday wrote an open letter to the U.N. Human Rights Council calling for an emergency session of the global body and an investigation into police violence and repression of protests in the U.S.

        “It is time the United States face the same scrutiny and judgement it is quick to pass on to other countries,” Jamil Dakwar, director of the ACLU’s Human Rights Program, said in a statement.

        “As communities in the United States call on their leaders to divest from policing and end structural racism, the United Nations must support these domestic demands by holding the United States accountable for its human rights violations,” Dakwar added.

        Rolando Gomez, a spokesman for the Human Rights Council, said they received the letter from the ACLU, but that a special session can only be held if there’s a push from one-third of the 47 members of the committee.

        “For the moment, no official request has come in from [member states], yet it is likely this issue is raised at the upcoming resumed Council session to start next week (on 15 June),” he wrote in an email.

      • Georgia officials launch investigation into election day chaos amid voter suppression concerns

        Tuesday’s elections saw one of the first major tests for Georgia’s new voting systems, which were bought by the state following a federal ruling last year that required Georgia to phase out paperless voting machines by 2020.

        Many voting issues on Tuesday stemmed from these new machines, provided as part of a multimillion dollar contract with Dominion Voting Systems.

      • Voter fraud truthers President Trump and Kayleigh McEnany may have voted illegally by mail: report

        The president and his top spokesperson have both listed residential addresses on their Florida voter registration cards which were not their legal residences, HuffPost recently reported. Punishable by up to five years in prison, it is a felony in Florida to use false information on voter registration forms.

      • Small Alberta town in spotlight over planned Black Lives Matter event

        A central Alberta mayor says his town has been caught off guard by all the attention it’s received over an anti-racism event planned for the weekend.

        The organizer of a Black Lives Matter protest on Saturday in Innisfail, Alta., initially called it off after an onslaught of online bigotry.

      • HBO Max temporarily pulls ‘Gone with the Wind’ amid racial tensions
      • Coronavirus: A window of opportunity for action on migration?

        At the beginning of June, UN Secretary-General António Guterres released a policy brief highlighting what he called the coronavirus pandemic’s “disproportionate impact” on asylum seekers and regular and irregular migrants.

        The virus, and the impacts of national responses to it, have magnified existing inequalities in access to healthcare, safety, and economic security. However, according to the UN brief, they also present the international community with an opportunity to “reimagine human mobility for the benefit of all”.

        Around the world, a number of local and national governments have responded to the virus by taking steps to protect the health and human rights of irregular migrants and asylum seekers as part of their overall efforts – although this inclusive approach is far from the norm.

      • For Sri Lanka’s activists, a ‘state of fear’ resurfaces

        Rights groups are warning of a crackdown on dissent and rising authoritarianism in Sri Lanka, raising fears for the future of long-stalled civil war reconciliation efforts.

        Since President Gotabaya Rajapaksa took office after November elections, local rights activists have reported a rise in surveillance by state security forces, threats, and other measures more common during the country’s 26-year civil war, which ended in 2009, as well as its aftermath.

        Advocates for Sri Lanka’s missing persons say they have come under particular scrutiny, especially in former conflict zones in the north and east. At least 16,000 people reported missing during the war are still unaccounted for, according to the International Committee of the Red Cross.

        “Surveillance has always been there, but since the election what we have seen is that it’s more open and more rampant,” said Shreen Saroor, a women’s rights activist.

        It comes alongside other signs that Sri Lanka is backsliding on rights – and on promises to accelerate war reconciliation – more than six months into Rajapaksa’s term.

      • NLG Statement in Support of #8toAbolition

        The National Lawyers Guild (NLG) supports the #8toAbolition campaign, which builds on decades of work by Black feminist abolitionists to demand an end to policing and prisons, and community investment that prioritizes the lives and safety of Black people. 8 to Abolition was created by BIPOC police and prison abolitionists as a response to the reformist changes of the #8CantWait campaign, that merely seek to reduce, instead of eliminate, continuing police violence against Black people.

        As the 8 To Abolition website states: “As police and prison abolitionists, we believe that this campaign is dangerous and irresponsible, offering a slate of reforms that have already been tried and failed, that mislead a public newly invigorated to the possibilities of police and prison abolition, and that do not reflect the needs of criminalized communities… Abolition can’t wait.”

    • Monopolies

      • Patents

        • A wake-up call for patentees?

          The English Patents Court has often been regarded as a relatively favourable jurisdiction for patentees seeking interim relief in the life sciences arena. This is for various reasons, including the fact that the English Court follows the approach adopted by the House of Lords in the American Cyanamid case, in which an assessment of the merits of the case is a low first hurdle to be crossed. Also, the Court has generally been willing to accept that in the pharmaceutical field premature generic entry may lead to unquantifiable and irreparable harm to the patent holder which outweighs that to the potential infringer.

          Nevertheless, in a judgment dated 3 June 2020, Marcus Smith J refused to grant an interim injunction to Neurim against the leading generics company Mylan. It remains to be seen if this decision will mark the start of a new direction from the English Patents Court or whether, like certain earlier cases such as Cephalon v Orchid [2010], this decision will come to be regarded as one where based on all the evidence before the Court, the Judge felt unable to impose an interim injunction to maintain the status quo until trial. In any event, the decision contains some interesting, and perhaps in some respects unconventional, observations.

          [...]

          Finally, the judge made reference to a communication from the Secretary of Health, writing on behalf of the NHS, to ask to be joined to any cross-undertaking given by the Court if the interim injunction were granted. Marcus Smith J considered that it was appropriate to take into account the interests of the NHS not only when framing the cross-undertaking but “also when considering whether the injunction ought to be granted at all.” (Emphasis in the original). He noted that had he been minded to grant the interim injunction, he would have wanted to have heard further submissions on the appropriateness of the injunction.

          [...]

          Postscript: On 8 June 2020, the Judge handed down his judgment on costs. He held that costs should not be reserved to the trial judge, and instead determined them himself on an issues based approach. He concluded that, whilst Mylan was the overall winner, it should recover no more than 65% of its costs once deductions had been made, for example for the fact that it lost on the issue of whether there was a “serious issue to be tried”.

        • Backdating at the Board: Provisionals & Prior Art

          The Federal Circuit here affirms the PTAB IPR final determination that Merck failed to prove the Microspherix claims invalid. US9636401; US9636402; US8821835. Microspherix sued Merck — accusing Merck’s implantable contraceptive of infringing. Merck responded with the three IPR petitions.

          The patents here cover implantable therapeutic/diagnostic devices that also have a radiopaque marker that helps find the device after insertion. As originally filed, the claims were directed to “brachytherapy” — slow release of radioactive agents to treat cancer. However, the claims were expanded in various continuation applications to broadly claim any “therapeutic, prophylactic, and/or diagnostic agent”

          The interesting legal question on appeal has to do with the timing of the asserted prior art reference Zamora. The chart below shows the patent filings in question, and each party argued that the opposing non-provisional applications could not properly claim priority to their respective provisional applications.

          [...]

          Question 3: Does Microspherix’s provisional date work as a priority date?: In considering priority claims, the courts generally operate on a claim-by-claim basis. Thus, in a complex patent family, a single patent may include claims with a variety of priority dates. One problem with our current system is that a patent only tells us the earliest claimed priorty date — not the actual priority date. The actual date is only realized and determined through ex post litigation. Here, Merck argued that some of the claims went beyond the provisional disclosure. On appeal, the Federal Circuit disagreed — explaining that the the written description requirement requires the disclosure to “reasonably convey” possession of the invention.

        • Software Patents

          • Lighthouse “check depositing” patent determined to be likely invalid

            On June 9, 2020, the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) instituted trial on all challenged claims in an IPR filed by Unified against U.S. Patent 8,590,940, owned and asserted by Lighthouse Consulting Group, an NPE. The ‘940 patent is directed to image-based check depositing technology. Lighthouse has thus far asserted this patent over 30 times since July and over 20 of those cases are still active (not including multiple DJ actions). The defendants in these cases are primarily banks and financial services companies such as Wells Fargo, Citigroup, Charles Schwab, AMEX, Bank of America, Capital One, Morgan Stanley, Ally Financial, JP Morgan, and BB&T. Wells Fargo also filed an IPR petition challenging claims of this patent in April.

          • $2,000 for prior art on 21st Century Garage patent

            On June 10, 2020, Unified Patents added a new PATROLL contest, with a $2,000 cash prize, seeking prior art on at least claim 1 of U.S. Patent 6,526,460. The ‘460 patent, formerly owned by DaimlerChrysler AG, is owned by 21st Century Garage, LLC, an NPE. The ’460 patent generally relates to a vehicle communications system, in particular for a motor vehicle, having a plurality of equipment units for transmitting, receiving, acquiring and/or processing data for executing applications.

          • Cassiopeia IP settles with Unified Patents

            On June 9, 2020, a joint motion to terminate pursuant to settlement was filed in IPR2020-00111 by Unified Patents and Cassiopeia IP, an IP Edge affiliate and well-known NPE. U.S. Patent 7,322,046, generally directed to secure use of a network service, has been widely asserted in 18 district court litigations against such companies as Best Buy, Western Digital, Aruba Networks, Epson America, and Funai.

      • Trademarks

        • Judge Orders Down ‘N Out Burger Joint To Hand Over All Signage To In-N-Out, Which Has Almost No Presence In Australia

          Two years ago we wrote a post about famed burger-slinger In-N-Out’s bullshit strategy for keeping its trademarks in Australia active and valid. That strategy amounts to the chain doing a popup restaurant briefly once every five years, essentially the minimum to keep a trademark active through use in the country. This has been going on for some time, which makes it fairly clear that In-N-Out has no real plans to have a permanent presence in Australia. And, yet, it goes about keeping its trademarks active.

      • Copyrights

        • Alleged KickassTorrents Operator Continues to Battle US Extradition Request

          Artem Vaulin, the alleged owner of KickassTorrents, still doesn’t know if he will be extradited to the United States. Nearly four years after the popular torrent site was shut down, the legal proceeding is still undecided. Instead of a swift success, the criminal case is starting to look more and more like the drawn-out Megaupload battle.

        • Google Promotes Pirate Videogame Repacker ‘FitGirl’ to ‘Musical Artist’ Status

          After an amusing goof by Google’s search algorithm, one of the most famous names in videogames piracy has been reclassified as a ‘musical artist’. People searching for ‘FitGirl’ are now greeted by her very own knowledge panel which lists her ‘top song’ as ‘Repacks’, a reference to compressed pirated releases.

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