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10.08.20

Links 9/10/2020: DMEMFS Proposed for Linux, LibreOffice 7.0.2 and GNOME 3.38.1 Released

Posted in News Roundup at 11:30 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • Kubuntu Focus M2 Linux Laptop Launches with Kubuntu 20.04 LTS, Updated Design

        Meet Kubuntu Focus M2, the 2nd generation of the Kubuntu Focus laptop featuring a 10th Gen Intel Core i7-10875H processor with up to 8 cores and 16 threads, and a base clock speed of 2.3GHz and up to 5.1GHz with Turbo Boost technology, up to 64GB DDR4 3200 MHz RAM, up to 4TB of NVMe storage.

        The Kubntu-powered Linux laptop also features NVIDIA’s series of GeForce RTX graphics card with the Turing architecture. Users can choose to buy the laptop with either the NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 GPU with 6GB GDDR6 VRAM or the more powerful NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 and 2080 with 8GB GDDR6 VRAM.

      • New Kubuntu Focus M2 Linux Laptop Arrives: 144Hz Display, 64GB RAM

        At the start of this year, the Kubuntu project, in collaboration with Tuxedo Computers, and Mindshare Management, launched a high-powered Linux laptop called Kubuntu Focus.

        Now, as we’re reaching toward the end of 2020, here comes the second generation Kubuntu Focus M2 by the Kubuntu Focus team. Combining the standard Ubuntu 20.04 LTS with a modern, highly-customizable, and beautiful KDE desktop, this ultimate turnkey Linux laptop has just gotten better.

      • Kubuntu Focus M2 Linux laptop from $1,795

        If you are in the market for a Linux laptop you may be interested in the Kubuntu Focus M2 offering a second generation laptop created by Kubuntu Focus. The finely-tuned Focus virtually eliminates the need to configure the operating system on arrival offering users the familiar KDE desktop on top of the industry standard Ubuntu 20.04 LTS.

      • Tehama combines secure virtual desktops with the raw power of Linux

        Tehama, the fastest, easiest, most secure way to deploy a global workforce, is pleased to announce that it’s bringing its automated, SaaS-based work environments to Linux with Tehama Linux Desktops.
        Tehama offers Linux users the power of high-performance computing (HPC)-related activities like software or game development, chip design, IoT development and IT administration, defended by Tehama’s highly secure virtual rooms when connecting to the cloud, applications, and corporate and IT infrastructure. It’s a perfect match for those who want their primary desktop to run on Linux.
        Tehama Linux Desktops use a Ubuntu KDE environment by default, and has built-in SOC 2 Type II compliance mechanisms and audit controls for automated compliance, along with zero-trust access, multi-factor authentication and automated security and firewall patches for secure connections. It also uses a pay as you go payment model, meaning you only pay for the time you use.

      • Archiving Satellite Imagery: A Chat About the Lemur Pro with NSIDC

        Chris: There’s two main aspects of what we do: Data storage and data distribution. Our web development team builds web applications so that scientists and the general public can come to our website to browse, download, and analyze our data. A lot of our applications are a combination of a front end, which would typically be written in JavaScript, and a back end written in Python which ties the front end into our database. We do also have some legacy code which we have to maintain as well, but those are the two main languages we use. We house most of our data on CU’s campus, though now we’re starting to move some of our data up into the cloud. That’s our next big project.

        Matt: To add to that, we’re also building tools for generating visualizations on our website. ASINA (Arctic Sea Ice News and Analysis) provides recent news on what’s happening in the Arctic and the Antarctic. Then there’s IceBridge, which shows flights of aircraft that have flown over the Arctic and taken photographs and measurements of the ice. You can scroll through all the data that’s available, choose what you want, zoom into areas, look at the thumbnails of the images, and then download the data.

        Matt: I’m also working on a project called QGreenland. We’re building a data package for commercial off-the-shelf QGIS, which is an open source tool for visualizing geographic data. The data package is focused on the geographic region around Greenland, so people who are going out there to do field work can take along this pre-downloaded data package that covers all kinds of disciplines, including atmospheric data, oceanographic data, human activity data, human health data, and animal migration data.

        Matt: Another data package we built contains different categories of data focusing on Greenland. It shows scientific data such as vegetation biomass, ice streams, glacial termini positions, ice sheet velocity, bathymetric data, and locations of bird colonies. It’s aimed at all kinds of scientists, as opposed to our other work which is focused on cryospheric science.

        [...]

        Matt: A few of us are on Ubuntu 20.04. One of us got their laptop a little earlier with Pop!_OS 18.04 installed. He’s since upgraded, and as far as I can tell he really likes it. At this point my experience with Ubuntu 20.04 has me wishing I went with Pop!_OS 20.04 as well because of snaps. I don’t really like snaps, so I had to go through a good amount of effort to disable them and block them from my system.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • How to install Garuda KDE Ultimate 200831
      • Recycle Your Clipboard History With Greenclip

        Time for another clipboard history manager, Greenclip has a feature that somehow all of the previous ones have just skipped over and that’s being able to actually store images in it, granted there’s a file size limit for some reason but it’s still such an improvement over what we’ve looked at previously, so if you need a clipboard history manager for linux this might be a good option.

      • Checking out the Vivaldi Web Browser

        With the recent news regarding all the trouble at Mozilla, I decided to give Vivaldi a serious try to see if it’s able to become my browser of choice. In this review, you’ll see the browser in action, as well as some of its best features. My overall opinions follow at the end.

      • Ubuntu Podcast from the UK LoCo: S13E29 – Penny for a sharp gift

        This week we’ve been hoovering with robots and playing Hades. We discuss snaps getting auto-theme install support, the Groovy Gorilla mascot, crowd sourcing featured apps for the Snap Store, touchpad gestures for Linux desktop and Mir still being alive and well! We also round up our picks from the tech news and bring you some events!

      • Six Ways To Support Employees During COVID-19

        What do you do when everything about how you run a business goes out the window?

        Software company Red Hat is regularly recognized as one of the best places to work, in part because of its strong community and culture. But when the COVID-19 pandemic forced employees around the world to work from home, the company had to find new ways to support its employees.

      • My YouTube Studio Tour

        Viewers of the channel have been wanting a rundown of the equipment that I use. So here is a brief tour of my “studio”. Below, I will post some affiliate links to most of the equipment.

    • Kernel Space

      • DMEMFS Is A Proposed Virtual File-System For Linux To Help Save Memory

        Tencent developers have proposed “DMEMFS” as a virtual file-system with the intent of helping to save system memory on large servers such as in public cloud environments.

        DMEMFS is the Direct Memory File-System and allows for reserving portions of the system RAM and it will not be managed by the kernel. The aim is to remove the struct page normally associated with each physical memory page. For desktop users and even most server users this doesn’t equate to much in the way of memory savings, but for hyperscalers and other large server deployments it can equate to some TCO savings.

      • Linux 5.10 To Fix Some HP Laptops Performing Less Than Optimally On AC Power

        Some HP Spectre laptops and possibly other HP models as well should be performing better when running on AC power starting with the Linux 5.10 kernel.

        With at least some HP Spectre laptops, the firmware has been setting the thermal policy to the default but hard-coding an Intel DPTF (Dynamic Platform and Thermal Framework) variable that was leading to thermald choosing the wrong DPTF profile and in turn leading to lower performance on AC power where as normally the highest performance is achievable when running on AC power rather than battery.

      • Graphics Stack

        • OpenCL 1.2 Support Merged For Mesa’s Gallium3D Clover While OpenCL 3.0 Is Being Tackled

          With this quarter’s Mesa 20.3 the Gallium3D “Clover” state tracker providing OpenCL support finally can handle version 1.2!

        • AMD Renoir On Linux Could Soon See Lower Power Consumption During Video Playback

          It looks like for Linux 5.11 there could be lower power usage during video playback on DCN 2.1 hardware, namely AMD Renoir.

          Sent out on Wednesday were the latest set of AMD DC patches for their “display core” code shared between Windows and Linux. Of the patches, catching our eye was a DCN 2.1 power optimization for video playback.

          That change amounts to enabling ODM Combine and fullscreen MPO on DCN2.1 hardware, which is most notably Renoir. The full-screen MPO support is regarding multi-plane overlays.

        • Mike Blumenkrantz: Cache Harder

          It’s just that kind of week.

          When I left off in my last post, I’d just implemented a two-tiered cache system for managing descriptor sets which was objectively worse in performance than not doing any caching at all.

          Cool.

          Next, I did some analysis of actual descriptor usage, and it turned out that the UBO churn was massive, while sampler descriptors were only changed occasionally. This is due to a mechanism in mesa involving a NIR pass which rewrites uniform data passed to the OpenGL context as UBO loads in the shader, compacting the data into a single buffer and allowing it to be more efficiently passed to the GPU. There’s a utility component u_upload_mgr for gallium-based drivers which allocates a large (~100k) buffer and then maps/writes to it at offsets to avoid needing to create a new buffer for this every time the uniform data changes.

    • Applications

      • 14 Best Free and Open Source Orthodox Linux File Managers

        file manager is software that provides a user interface to undertake file management activities with file systems. Common operations performed on files or groups of files include create, open, rename, move, copy, delete, search/find, edit, view print, play, as well as modify file attributes, properties and file permissions. The file manager is one of those essential applications for many users which is almost impossible to function without. Linux is blessed with a good range of file managers that help to make file management a breeze.

        There are a number of different types of file managers, with some stark differences. The most common file managers that we see are navigational file managers, orthodox file managers, and web-based file managers. The less popular types include file-list, spatial, and 3D file managers. The purpose of this article is to examine the finest open source orthodox file managers that are available for the Linux platform.

    • Instructionals/Technical

    • Games

      • VisualBoy Advance | Gameboy Emulation on Linux

        I came upon a situation where I was not able to play any of my Gameboy games when away from home. I stumbled upon a rather fantastic solution that really needs to be shared with the Linux world. An emulator called VisualBoy Advanced.

      • Time-travel action-RPG ‘Last Epoch’ adds customizable loot filters in a major update

        After announcing back in late August that Last Epoch would not be leaving Early Access in 2020, the team at Eleventh Hour Games have been working non-stop on more big upgrades to this action-RPG.

        With another update out now, the patch notes are once again something you need a coffee to go over with. There’s lots big and small, with something a lot of players will be happy about being the new customizable Loot Filters. This is a genuinely slick feature, letting players decide how they want to see their loot drops and it’s all stored as text files so you can share your tweaks with others – brilliant! Lots more came with it like a complete visual overhaul to the second chapter of the story, multiple performance optimizations, new skills, new unique items and lots more.

      • Living and Gaming in UltraWide on Linux

        As I hinted in my recent article about Freesync on Linux, I have recently purchased a monitor for a better work environment at home. The thing I did not mention was that this monitor is in an Ultrawide format. What’s an Ultrawide format, you might ask? Well, it refers to displays with aspect ratios greater than 2. Your regular 16:9 monitor is, by division, less than 2 (16/9 is 1.778 ratio).

        My new monitor is a 34 inches screen with a resolution of 3440*1440 pixels (apparently it’s called WQHD) with an aspect ratio of 2.38. It’s a flat surface one – you can also find curved “gaming” monitors, which seem silly because there’s not much distortion to worry about at this kind of display size (but don’t tell anyone, they like to charge more for that).

      • New Improvements for GPUParticles in Godot 4.0

        The turn of porting the GPU particle system to Godot 4.0 has arrived. This was the final feature that had to be ported over. Like all the rest of the features ported, it managed to get massive improvements.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • [KDE] 20.12 releases schedule finalized

          It is available at the usual place https://community.kde.org/Schedules/release_service/20.12_Release_Schedule

          Dependency freeze is in four weeks (November 5) and Feature Freeze a week after that, make sure you start finishing your stuff!

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • GNOME 3.38 Desktop Environment Gets First Point Release, Here’s What’s Changed

          Released last month, the GNOME 3.38 desktop environment introduces a new GNOME Tour app, a customizable app grid in GNOME Shell, improved multi-monitor support, better screencasting and screen capturing, improved Flatpak support, better support for sandboxed apps, better Wayland support, and much more.

          GNOME 3.38.1 is here to fix many issues discovered since the release of GNOME 3.38 across many core components and apps. For example, the Epiphany web browser now opens the portal helper in a new tab and only in non-GNOME environments, and the Flatpak app now supports opening of custom CSS and JavaScript files.

        • GNOME 3.38 Point Release Arrives with Fixes Galore

          GNOME 3.38.1 is, as you’d expect, a bug fix follow-up to last month’s stable release. GNOME devs recommend that ‘all distributions shipping GNOME 3.38 … upgrade’ to it as soon as they are able.

          A few errant issues with the GNOME Shell application grid’s (newly introduced) drag and drop reordering are now solved; screencast clips made using the GNOME Shell screen recording feature now show up in recent items list; and the (handy) “password peek” has been finessed.

        • GNOME 3.38.1

          Hi,

          GNOME 3.38.1 is now available. This is a stable bugfix release for 3.38. All distributions shipping GNOME 3.38 are encouraged to upgrade.

          If you want to compile GNOME 3.38.1, you can use the official BuildStream project snapshot…

        • GNOME 3.38.1 Released With An Initial Batch Of Fixes
        • WhiteSur: macOS Big Sur Like Gtk, Gnome Shell And Icon Themes For Your Linux Desktop

          WhiteSur Gtk Theme is a macOS Big Sur like theme for Gnome-based desktops, supporting Gnome Shell, Cinnamon, Xfce, Pantheon, Budgie and Mate desktops.

          The theme pack comes in both light and dark variants, both having regular (with the sidebar slightly transparent in some applications) and solid versions.

          There’s also an optional Plank dock theme for those that want to achieve an even closer look to macOS Big Sur. As a side note, if you use Ubuntu and want to disable Ubuntu Dock so you can use Plank dock instead, see this article.
          The theme requires Gtk 3.20 or newer, so it should work with most Linux distributions, e.g. from Ubuntu 18.04 to 20.10, etc.

    • Distributions

      • New Releases

      • Screenshots/Screencasts

        • UbuntuDDE 20.10 Remix Beta

          Today we are looking at UbuntuDDE 20.10 Remix Beta. It comes fully packed with Deepin 5.2, Linux Kernel 5.8, and uses about 1 -1.2 of ram when idling. It has a couple of bugs, as seen in the video, but it is a brand new release of Deepin and Ubuntu DDE is still a piece of art in the making, so I am sure that it will just get better! Enjoy!

        • UbuntuDDE 20.10 Remix Beta Run Through

          In this video, we are looking at UbuntuDDE 20.10 Remix Beta.

      • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandriva/OpenMandriva Family

        • Freetube updated to 0.8.0

          Freetube is an opensource standalone application for viewing YouTube videos with privacy in mind.

        • Mozilla Thunderbird updated to 78.3.2

          Thunderbird is a standalone mail and newsgroup client from Mozilla. If you haven’t moved to web based email then this application is for you.

        • Calibre updated to 5.2.0

          Calibre is meant to be a complete e-library solution. It includes library management, format conversion, news feeds to ebook conversion as well as e-book reader sync features.

      • SUSE/OpenSUSE

        • Thunderbird, grep, systemd Update in Tumbleweed

          Systemd 246.6, grep 3.5 and Mozilla Thunderbird 78.3.1 became available in openSUSE Tumbleweed this week.

          Four snapshots have been released so far this month.

          The most recent snapshot, 20201007, brought a new version update of the general purpose parser bison 3.7.2, which fixed all known Bison Common Vulnerabilities and Exposure related to the bison program itself, but not the generated code. The GNU C Library, glibc, 2.32 corrected the locking and cancellation cleanup in syslog functions; the update also deprecated the <sys/sysctl.h> header and removed the sysctl function. The snapshot was released a couple of hours ago and started trending at a stable rating of 96, according to the Tumbleweed snapshot reviewer.

          Email client Alpine was the only other package besides the several RubyGem packages there were updated in snapshot 20201005. The alpine 2.23.2 version added a shortcut to broaden or narrow searches and also expanded the configuration screen for XOAUTH2 so it can include the username and tenant. Many of the action/active packages of RubyGem updated from version 5.2.4.2 to 5.2.4.4, which fixed multiple CVEs. The 0.7.0.1 version of rubygem-bundler-audit fixed an issue with Bundler parsing. Some enhancements were made in the update of rubygem-fluentd from version 1.10.3 to version 1.11.2; the package also refactored the of code in it’s latest release. There were two major RubyGem packages updated in the snapshot. One of those was the Sept. 17 release of rubygem-puma 5.0.0; the package provides new experimental commands and options as well as allowing compiling without OpenSSL and dynamically loading files needed for SSL, add ‘no ssl’ Continuous Integration. The other major update was rubygem-vagrant_cloud 3.0.0. The snapshot is trending stable at a 91 rating.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • Migrating C and C++ applications from Red Hat Enterprise Linux version 7 to version 8

          When moving an application that you’ve compiled on Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 7 to RHEL 8, you will likely encounter issues due to changes in the application binary interface (ABI). The ABI describes the low-level binary interface between an application and its operating environment.

          [...]

          The most straightforward way to avoid compatibility problems when migrating your C and C++ application code from RHEL 7 to RHEL 8 is to rebuild the code on RHEL 8. Users can leverage a containerized or virtualized environment to build and test in a RHEL 8 environment on a RHEL 7 system before migrating to the newer version.

          In some cases, it might be possible to deploy C and C++ applications built on RHEL 7 to RHEL 8 without first rebuilding. If you’ve followed the guidance in the RHEL 7 ACG, and depend only on the C and C++ libraries in compatibility level 1 (CL1), then Red Hat provides a compatible version of those libraries in RHEL 8. Indeed, we maintain stable versions of those libraries for three major RHEL releases. Note, however, that there are no guarantees that RHEL 8 will provide RHEL 7-compatible libraries beyond CL1.

        • AnsibleFest highlights Ansible momentum as IT automation becomes an enterprise imperative

          This month marks the five year anniversary since Red Hat acquired Ansible, and since then, much has changed in the IT automation world. IT organizations have always faced continual pressure to support rapid innovation at-scale, but 2020 has been an especially challenging year. Organizations required solutions that delivered fast responses to changing business requirements, and automation can respond to these needs. As a result, automation has come to the forefront of IT strategy, emerging as a boardroom imperative due to a need for rapid business changes, strong ROI and efficiency benefits.

          According to a Forrester Consulting study commissioned by Red Hat, firms are well on their way to pursuing automation with security, efficiency and customer demands in mind. Furthermore, 99% of decision makers report multiple technology and business benefits from their automation software investments, including improved security, improved integration and faster innovation.

        • Red Hat Accelerators: Embracing the tech community to thrive in a new normal

          This year has produced many dynamic global challenges that changed the way people work and, especially, interact. Now, we’ve found ourselves more cut off from our friends, family and co-workers than ever before as we reside in an increasingly virtual world. As necessary restrictions around travel, social gatherings and work from home endure for the foreseeable future, individuals are craving a way to fill these new voids, discover new passions to focus their attention and replace so many missed connections within a new reality. In particular, people are reevaluating what they truly want out of life both personally and professionally, and sometimes the resolution comes from satisfying a little bit of both.

          [...]

          While video conferencing capabilities have skyrocketed in the last year, it can be nearly impossible to talk in depth on calls with 20, 30 or even 40+ members. While you can gain a lot from the group takeaways, there needs to be an additional opportunity to share your opinions and dive deeper into topics of discussion, or even just have the opportunity for the occasional witty banter and personal rhetoric, one on one. Not only do practitioners have this opportunity to connect directly with other customers, but there are also a plethora of Red Hat subject matter experts and leaders across product lines and business units that are available for you to pick their brains and access candid, unfiltered information. This individualized communication enables Accelerators to share their insights so they can engage in meaningful, personalized conversations.

        • Breaking the stigma of mental health in the workplace

          Early in my career, I felt like I had to be “on” all the time. Even if my boss wasn’t counting my hours, I felt compelled to constantly be engaged with work. If I had some downtime between my tasks, I triple-checked my email. If I had time to read something, I felt like I should read something directly work related. I wouldn’t let myself take a break. It wasn’t just my desire to prove myself that was pushing me, it was anxiety, which I’ve been living with my entire adult life.

          [...]

          A group of my colleagues formed the Neurodiversity Community three years ago with the mission to support Red Hatters with cognitive differences and raise awareness about neurodiversity. As part of our recognition of World Mental Health Day, we asked members of the community for behaviors they would like to be more common to help break the stigma around mental health in the workplace. This is especially important as people around the world are experiencing increased mental health challenges due to all the events of 2020.

        • 12 factors to measuring an open source project’s health

          In the Open Source Program Office we consider a healthy open source community one that demonstrates open practices, uses open infrastructure, and cultivates an open culture with the goal of becoming more sustainable. But even for the most seasoned community architects, measuring an open source community’s health is a complex, difficult, and sometimes intimidating task.

          That’s because any picture of project health is actually a mosaic. Multiple factors combine to depict a community’s overall health. You’ll never find just one indicator you can point to and say “See? The community is healthy.” (You can, however, find some indicators that immediately show that a community is unhealthy.)

        • Safe Queue in action: Another Call for Code deployment in the field

          Now that we’re in our third year of Call for Code, I’d say one of the most remarkable things about the program is its constant capacity to surprise me with both its broad reach and agility. Call for Code unites hundreds of thousands of developers to create and deploy applications powered by open source technology that can tackle some of the world’s biggest challenges. Safe Queue is a great example of that, and our eminent judges recently named Safe Queue one of the top five solutions in this year’s Call for Code Global Challenge. Safe Queue was created by a single developer in Los Angeles, Dave Chura, who happened to hear about Call for Code while watching a video from Lady Gaga on his local evening news.

          Dave was inspired by Lady Gaga’s call to action and decided to contribute his technological know-how to help support his community’s reaction to the COVID-19 pandemic. That’s the fortuitous origin story behind Safe Queue, a solution to replace physical lines at shopping centers, small businesses, and polling places with on-demand virtual lines, to support a safe way to manage entry during COVID-19.

          Back in May, Safe Queue was recognized as part of Call for Code’s accelerated COVID-19 submission deadline, and since then my team and I have worked with Dave to strengthen his solution and incorporate feedback from users in a variety of organizations. Safe Queue uses GPS location data to create a virtual queue of those within 1000 feet of a location, allowing employees to control the queue digitally, and validating entry with a randomly generated QR code for each customer. This solution builds on IBM Cloud Foundry for web app hosting, HERE technologies for geolocation, Twilio for SMS messaging, and IBM Cloudant to store geospatial data.

        • Red Hat Announces Price Reduction On Managed OpenShift Services

          Red Hat has dropped the price of Red Hat OpenShift Dedicated by an average of 75% and also announced an improved service-level agreement (SLA) to 99.95% availability.

        • Fedora Mobility wants to bring the Linux distro to smartphones

          Earlier this year one Fedora user released an unofficial script for building a version of the popular desktop Linux distribution that could run on the PinePhone.

          Now things are starting to look a little more official.

          Fedora Infrastructure Lead Kevin Fenzi made an announcement in the Fedora mailing list recently that the team is reviving the Fedora Mobility SIG, a group of developers interesting in bringing Fedora to phones.

        • Red Hat’s CIO On COVID-19, Cloud And Being A Big Red Hat Customer
        • IBM Jettisons Legacy Services To Focus On Hybrid Cloud

          Today, the Gerstner era of International Business Machines is over, and the Krishna era is truly beginning, as Big Blue is spinning out the system outsourcing and hosting business that gave it an annuity-like revenue stream – and something of an even keel – in some rough IT infrastructure waters for two over decades.

          The spinout, which IBM chief executive officer Arvind Krishna, who took over the helm of the company in April, will create an as-yet-unnamed and publicly traded company that is tentatively being called NewCo, focused on strategic outsourcing and system hosting for some 4,600 companies in 115 countries around the world. And while IBM has not said this, NewCo will also be something else: IBM’s largest customer, which has some interesting ramifications for both companies.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • [Older] Beta Version Of Ubuntu 20.10 And Its Flavors Now Available To Download

          After Ubuntu 20.04 LTS “Focal Fossa,” the Ubuntu team has now released the final beta of the next Ubuntu 20.10 codenamed “Groovy Gorilla.”

          Following the 26-week long development cycle, the stable version of Ubuntu 20.10 is scheduled to be released on October 22, 2020, with support for 9 months until July 2021.

          In addition to Ubuntu 20.10 Beta, seven other official Ubuntu flavors have also been released. You can download the ISO image and install the beta version, which you would also be able to upgrade to the final stable release by just updating your system.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • 12 factors to measuring an open source project’s health

        In the Open Source Program Office we consider a healthy open source community one that demonstrates open practices, uses open infrastructure, and cultivates an open culture with the goal of becoming more sustainable. But even for the most seasoned community architects, measuring an open source community’s health is a complex, difficult, and sometimes intimidating task.

        That’s because any picture of project health is actually a mosaic. Multiple factors combine to depict a community’s overall health. You’ll never find just one indicator you can point to and say “See? The community is healthy.” (You can, however, find some indicators that immediately show that a community is unhealthy.)

      • openIMIS: Open-source Health Financing Package

        openIMIS is an open-source healthcare finance package that is developed and maintained by active community of developers and packed by several world leading class organization.

        The main goal of it is to provide an efficient healthcare finance system as an alternative for the commercial solutions which usually come with a high cost.

        openIMIS journey started back in 2012, since then, it has been evolving ever since and proven resource and cost-effective in low resources environment and countries. It currently runs in many healthcare facilities in Tanzania, Chad, Nepal, DRC and Cameroon.

      • Top 5 open source alternatives to Google Analytics

        If you have a website or run an online business, collecting data on where your visitors or customers come from, where they land on your site, and where they leave is vital. Why? That information can help you better target your products and services, and beef up the pages that are turning people away.

        To gather that kind of information, you need a web analytics tool.

        Many businesses of all sizes use Google Analytics. But if you want to keep control of your data, you need a tool that you can control. You won’t get that from Google Analytics. Luckily, Google Analytics isn’t the only game on the web.

      • Open Networking And Edge Summit 2020 Delivers

        Last week, I virtually attended ONES 2020, the Linux Foundation’s Open Networking and Edge Summit. I was impressed with the diversity of content at ONES this year, and appreciated the added emphasis on edge (which was the impetus for adding the “E” to the conference name—if you’ve never heard of the event, it’s because it was previously called ONS). Today I would like to highlight what I consider the most compelling announcements and takeaways from the jam-packed 3-day event.

      • Kiwi TCMS 8.7

        We’re happy to announce Kiwi TCMS version 8.7!

      • [syslog-ng] Insider 2020-10: Cisco; Signal Messenger; PCRE dupnames;

        This is the 85th issue of syslog-ng Insider, a monthly newsletter that brings you syslog-ng-related news.

      • Web Browsers

        • Mozilla

          • Mozilla Thunderbird 78.3.2 Is Now Available for Download – What’s New [Ed: Microsoft propagandist pushing Microsoft talking points about Outlook]

            Despite the adoption of Outlook increasing lately, especially among company employees and following the Office 365 suite benefitting from the remote working trend, Thunderbird continues to be one super-popular choice and it happens for good reason

            Not only that it packs a super-advanced feature lineup, but Thunderbird also sports a clean and intuitive interface that can be further customized according to your preferences.

            Right now, Thunderbird works on the following platforms…

          • The EU’s Current Approach to QWACs (Qualified Website Authentication Certificates) will Undermine Security on the Open Web

            Since its founding in 1998, Mozilla has championed human-rights-compliant innovation as well as choice, control, and privacy for people on the Internet. We have worked hard to actualise this belief for the billions of users on the Web by actively leading and participating in the creation of Web standards that drive the Internet. We recently submitted our thoughts to the European Commission on its survey and public consultation regarding the eIDAS regulation, advocating for an interpretation of eIDAS that is better for user security and retains innovation and interoperability of the global Internet.

            Given our background in the creation of the Transport Layer Security (TLS) standard for website security, we believe that mandating an interpretation of eIDAS that requires Qualified Website Authentication Certificates (QWACs) to be bound with TLS certificates is deeply concerning. Along with weakening user security, it will cause serious harm to the single European digital market and its place within the global internet.

      • Productivity Software/LibreOffice/Calligra

        • LibreOffice 7.0.2 Is Now Available for Download with More Than 130 Bug Fixes

          LibreOffice 7.0 was launched about two months ago with many new features and enhancements, including support for the OpenDocument Format (ODF) 1.3, better compatibility with MS Office formats like DOCX, XLSX and PPTX, HiDPI scaling for Qt5/KDE5, and much more.

          The first point release arrived last month with almost 80 bug fixes, but the LibreOffice development team didn’t stop there so they continued hunting and squashing bugs. As such, LibreOffice 7.0.2 is here today with a total of 131 bug fixes across all core components to improve document compatibility and the overall performance of the office suite.

        • Announcement of LibreOffice 7.0.2

          LibreOffice 7.0.2, the second minor release of the LibreOffice 7.0 family, targeted at technology enthusiasts and power users, is now available for download from https://www.libreoffice.org/download/. LibreOffice 7.0.2 includes over 130 bug fixes and improvements to document compatibility.

          The most significant new features of the LibreOffice 7.0 family are: support for OpenDocument Format (ODF) 1.3; Skia graphics engine and Vulkan GPU-based acceleration for better performance; and carefully improved compatibility with DOCX, XLSX and PPTX files.

          LibreOffice offers the highest level of compatibility in the office suite arena, starting from native support for the OpenDocument Format (ODF) – with better security and interoperability features – to wide support for proprietary formats.

          [...]

          Support for migrations and training should be sourced from certified professionals who provide value-added services which extend the reach of the community to the corporate world. Also, the work done by ecosystem partners flows back into the LibreOffice project, and this represents an advantage for everyone.

      • FSF

        • Free Software Foundation celebrates 35 years in the free software fight

          “I’ve been fortunate to be a member of the FSF staff for almost half of these thirty-five years. Standing up to the biggest, most powerful companies and governments on the planet is exhausting work. In addition to the multiple generations of FSF staff and board members, I want to thank all of the community supporters — activists, hackers, donors, volunteers — who have stuck with us through the ups and downs, knowing the vital long-term importance of the FSF as a staunch protector of computer user freedom. We’ll take a second to celebrate how far we’ve come, and then take that energy to keep moving forward,” John Sullivan, executive director of the FSF, commented.

          According to the foundation, free software gives users the right to run, change, share and contribute as well as helps promote and support other fundamental rights like freedom of speech, press and right to privacy.

          “Our work will not be finished until every computer user is able to do all of their digital tasks in complete freedom — whether that’s on a desktop, laptop, or the computer in your pocket. The fight for free software continues, and we wouldn’t be here without you,” the foundation wrote in a post.

          To celebrate its 35th birthday, the foundation is launching a new FSF video, anniversary-themed artwork and a livestream event with guests from around the world. The artwork features an underwater theme, which can be purchased as a t-shirt or poster.

      • Programming/Development

        • Postman on Linux System: The Best API Tool for Software Developer

          The Postman is a tool that sends requests from a server to a client. You can use Postman to develop APIs, test, and share resources among different applications. An API is an application programming interface that can interact between your database and the server to make your website or application functional. On the other hand, you can say that an API is a middle man who can connect your server with many applications. In Linux, you can use the Postman package to connect a single database among many applications and websites through the API.

          We all know there are many ways to connect multiple computers through the web, Lan, or servers; hence API is the system that can help you to exchange resources among two or more applications. Installing Postman is the easiest and preferable method to maintain the APIs on Linux.

        • Dirk Eddelbuettel: RcppSimdJson 0.1.2: Upstream update

          A new RcppSimdJson release arrived on CRAN yesterday bringing along the simdjson 0.5.0 release that happened a few weeks.

          RcppSimdJson wraps the fantastic and genuinely impressive simdjson library by Daniel Lemire and collaborators. Via very clever algorithmic engineering to obtain largely branch-free code, coupled with modern C++ and newer compiler instructions, it results in parsing gigabytes of JSON parsed per second which is quite mindboggling. The best-case performance is ‘faster than CPU speed’ as use of parallel SIMD instructions and careful branch avoidance can lead to less than one cpu cycle per byte parsed; see the video of the talk by Daniel Lemire at QCon (also voted best talk).

        • Python

          • Pros and Cons of using Python Web Development

            Python is a powerful programming language for mobile and web development projects. It is also the most popular programming language for AI in 2020. RedI Python development’s use cases in scientific computing, statistics, and education make it one of the highly preferred programming languages for Python programmers.

            python pros and cons

            The open-source programming language launched in 1992 is now on the verge of becoming the most popular and used programming language. Due to the rise in demand for AI and ML applications, Python web programming is now the first thing that comes to mind for coding such applications.

          • Change Figure Size in Matplotlib

            Matplotlib is one of the most widely used data visualization libraries in Python. Much of Matplotlib’s popularity comes from its customization options – you can tweak just about any element from its hierarchy of objects.

            In this tutorial, we’ll take a look at how to change a figure size in Matplotlib.

          • Better user experience with updates in the R plugin

            Over more than one and a half months, we introduced many improvements in the plugin to make your work with it more productive and comfortable.

          • Károly Nagy: Stop using await in a Python forloop

            So asyncio is particularly useful for things like database queries, API requests, IO operation where the CPU wouldn’t do any actual operations but it would stay in WAIT until it gets the requested data from the endpoint.

            While it does wait for this IO other operations can be done. This could be either other work within the same application (think about Tornado for example), handling other request or it can progress with the execution and only wait for the data when it becomes necessary.

          • PyCharm 2020.3 EAP #2

            The second build of PyCharm 2020.3 is now available in the Early Access Program with features and fixes that will make your experience smoother and more productive.

            We invite you to join the program to test, share your thoughts, and help us make a better PyCharm for you and all our users!

          • Make A Landing Page – Building SaaS #75

            In this episode, I added a landing page design to the app that I’m building. By using a Tailwind CSS landing page template, I could fit the design in with my existing CSS tools.

          • Andrew Dalke: Cache and reuse popcount-sorted ChEMBL fingerprints

            The program I wrote in the first essay of this series of ChEMBL fingerprint Tanimoto search algorithms took 2 seconds per query. I wrote a series of new programs which had a higher startup cost in exchange for a faster per-query searches. The final program, in yesterday’s essay took 10 seconds to load but could process 35-90 queries per second, depending on the threshold.

          • Everything you should know about Python’s PIP and PyPi

            PIP is the standard package manager available in python. Although Python’s standard library comes with many useful packages by default, we are not limited to only those packages. In python, we have a vast repository of packages at PyPI, which are developed by many great contributors. With the pip package manager’s help, we can easily install and use any of these packages in our python code.

        • Rust

          • Announcing Rust 1.47.0

            The Rust team is happy to announce a new version of Rust, 1.47.0. Rust is a programming language that is empowering everyone to build reliable and efficient software.

            If you have a previous version of Rust installed via rustup, getting Rust 1.47.0 is as easy as:

            rustup update stable

  • Leftovers

    • John Luther Adams’s Songs for a Vanished World

      Isolation has long been understood as an essential part of artistic creation—hence all those tweets about how we should spend our quarantine writing King Lear. That’s a high bar for most of us to meet, but there is something to the mythic ideal of the artist in solitude, like Georgia O’Keeffe in the desert. In his new memoir, Silences So Deep, the composer John Luther Adams writes of the long period he spent in Alaska, illuminating the effect of his solitude in that place on his life and his body of work.

    • Hardware

    • Health/Nutrition

      • Laying ‘Tens of Thousands of Preventable Deaths’ at the Foot of Trump Failures, Top US Health Official Resigns in Protest

        “Nine months into the pandemic, the United States continues to grapple with failed White House leadership,” writes whistleblower Dr. Rick Bright in public resignation letter.

      • How to Cope With Daily Life During a Pandemic

        After all these months and 210,000 deaths, you’d think I’d be used to it all, but I’m not. It doesn’t seem even a little normal yet. I’m still full of absences, missing so much I used to take for granted: hugs and handshakes, rooms crowded for funerals and weddings, potluck dinners and house parties. I miss browsing the stacks at the library and the racks at the thrift shop. I miss going to our Unitarian Universalist congregation and the robust community connection we enjoyed every Sunday.

      • “Super-Spreader” Trump Wants to Return to Oval Office Despite Being Contagious

        At every turn, Donald Trump and Republican lawmakers have opted to hide information around COVID-19 diagnoses rather than disclose it, despite the enormous health risks this creates for everyone around them. In his latest selfish act of endangerment, Trump, still infected with coronavirus, reportedly wants to leave isolation and work from the Oval Office, requiring staff to wear personal protective equipment like a gown, surgical mask and eye protectors supplied at a so-called “isolation cart.”

      • If SCOTUS Strikes Down ACA, Trump’s Health Care Order Cannot Replace It

        The battle over the replacement of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has refocused American attention on the future of the Affordable Care Act. The Supreme Court is scheduled to hear oral arguments Nov. 10 in a case seeking to overturn the law that brought insurance coverage to millions of Americans.

      • Former CDC Chief Urges Current Director to Denounce Trump’s Handling of COVID-19

        In a scathing letter sent late last month as coronavirus cases and deaths surged across the United States, renowned epidemiologist and former CDC chief Dr. William Foege called on the agency’s current director to publicly speak out about the Trump administration’s catastrophic failure to combat the pandemic and apologize for caving to the White House’s influence — even if it means risking his job.

      • Giuliani Coughs on Fox News While Attacking Biden for Urging Mask Wearing

        President Donald Trump’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani repeatedly coughed throughout a Monday interview with Fox News as he attacked Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden for urging Americans to listen to scientific experts and wear masks amid the coronavirus pandemic.

      • Fauci: If Precautions Are Not Taken COVID Deaths Could Reach 400K This Winter

        Anthony Fauci, a member of the White House’s coronavirus task force and the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, told a virtual audience this week that they should not be surprised if the coronavirus casualty count ends up being near 400,000 by the end of the winter season.

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Pseudo-Open Source

          • Openwashing

            • Amundsen: one year later

              On October 30, 2019, we officially open sourced Amundsen, our solution to solve metadata catalog and data discovery challenges. Ten months later, Amundsen joined the Linux foundation AI (LFAI) as its incubation project.

        • Security

          • Security updates for Thursday

            Security updates have been issued by Debian (activemq, golang-go.crypto, packagekit, and sympa), Fedora (php and xen), Red Hat (bind, kernel, and qemu-kvm), SUSE (qemu), and Ubuntu (golang-github-seccomp-libseccomp-golang and spice).

          • Windows Vs macOS Vs Linux: Best OS For Cybersecurity
          • [Slackware] Chromium 86 update resolves critical security issue

            Google developers have released Chromium 86 to the public. Head over to the “Stable Channel” blog to read more details about this new major version.

            And then get the fresh packages for chromium-86.0.4240.75 ! This is an urgent upgrade request, because the new release plugs a critical security hole in the online payments code which gives the attacker full access to your local machine (CVE-2020-15967: Use after free in payments).

            Chromium 86 addresses 34 other security issues, none of the others are critical.

          • 8 tips to tighten up your work-from-home network

            The TL;DR version of that article is, of course, exactly the same as the headline: if you connect it, protect it.

            Every time you hook up a poorly-protected device to your network, you run the risk that crooks will find it, probe it, attack it, exploit it and – if things end badly – use it as a toehold to dig into your digital life.

            Criminals who figure out how to commandeer a vulnerable device inside your network can use that device to map out, scan and attack your laptop – the one you’re using right now to work from home – as if they were right there beside you.

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • After Years Of Claiming It Doesn’t Use Facial Recognition Software, The LAPD Admits It Has Used It 30,000 Times Since 2009

              The Los Angeles Police Department apparently loves using facial recognition tech. It doesn’t like talking about its love for this tech, though. It told the Georgetown Law Center on Privacy and Technology it had nothing to give the Center when it asked for its facial recognition tech documents.

            • Announcing Global Privacy Control in Privacy Badger

              Today, we’re announcing that the upcoming release of Privacy Badger will support the Global Privacy Control, or GPC, by default.

              GPC is a new specification that allows users to tell companies they’d like to opt out of having their data shared or sold. By default, Privacy Badger will send the GPC signal to every company you interact with alongside the Do Not Track (DNT) signal. Like DNT, GPC is transmitted through an HTTP header and a new Javascript property, so every server your browser talks to and every script it runs will know that you intend to opt out of having your data shared or sold. Compared with ad industry-supported opt-out mechanisms, GPC is simple, easy to deploy, and works well with existing privacy tools.

            • San Francisco Activists Sue City Over ‘Illegal Dragnet Surveillance’ of George Floyd, BLM Protests

              Such practices by police are “completely at odds with the First Amendment and should never be allowed,” said an ACLU lawyer on the case.

    • Defence/Aggression

      • Why a DC Public Relations Firm Pretended to Be Bolivian on Facebook

        The Americas Blog featured a post last week about the growing wave of election interference and misinformation campaigns sweeping Latin America, especially as a tool of right-wing governments and political movements. As these digital operations have grown in popularity, so has the market for firms to organize them. In particular, new details about the recent Latin American operations of a US public relations firm called CLS Strategies illustrate that Americans are not just on the receiving end of manipulative social media campaigns, but are participants in them as well.

      • Hearts on Fire for the 43 of Ayoztinapa

        On the sixth anniversary of the forced disappearance of the 43 Ayoztinapa college students, a flurry of developments is spurring optimism among long traumatized relatives of the students and their dedicated core of supporters.

      • France and Germany to propose EU sanctions against Russia over Navalny’s poisoning

        Germany and France are planning to share proposals for additional sanctions against Russia with their European partners, in response to the poisoning of Russian opposition figure Alexey Navalny. This was announced in a joint statement from the two countries on Wednesday, October 7.

      • A Reckoning Inside the Domestic-Violence Movement

        On a Friday night in July, two police officers in Rollinsford, a small town in eastern New Hampshire, responded to a report of a domestic disturbance at the home of RJ and Sarah Letendre. RJ Letendre, who at the time worked as a police officer in the nearby city of Dover, told the responding officers that during a conversation about a divorce, she attacked him, scratching and biting him.

      • ‘You’re an enemy’: ‘Novaya Gazeta’ releases audio version of Anna Politkovskaya’s report on her first meeting with Ramzan Kadyrov

        To mark the fourteenth anniversary of journalist Anna Politkovskaya’s murder, the producers of Novaya Gazeta’s podcast “Chto Novogo” (What’s New) released an audio recording of her report on her first meeting with Ramzan Kadyrov. The voiceover, including quotes from both Politkovskaya and Kadyrov, was recorded by Russian actress and director Yulia Aug. At the end of the audio report, there’s a recording of Politkovskaya herself, where she explains why she has continued to work as a journalist. 

      • City Apologizes 41 Years After Cops Allowed Klan, Nazis to Kill Anti-Racists

        Nearly 41 years after Ku Klux Klansmen and American Nazis shot dead five anti-racism activists in the town of Greensboro, North Carolina, the city council there has passed a resolution apologizing for the attack and the police department’s complicity in the killings. We speak with two survivors of the 1979 attack, Rev. Nelson Johnson and Joyce Hobson Johnson, who say the city’s apology acknowledges “the police knew and chose to do nothing. In fact, they facilitated what we name now as a North American death squad.”

      • Why the UN must set up an independent body to tackle sexual abuse

        Six years ago, I became a UN whistleblower, intervening to stop the sexual abuse of children by soldiers in Central African Republic. The revelation led to an independent investigation into how the UN had handled the affair and, in 2015, to a damning report that identified severe structural and systemic weaknesses within the UN system.

        At the end of it, in 2016, I resigned from the United Nations, making a final call for structural change in the ethical standards of the organisation.
        Since then, I have looked from a distance as Sweden’s ambassador in Central America, still hoping that the UN would learn from what had happened, and change.
        Last week, though, The New Humanitarian and the Thomson Reuters Foundation published a one-year investigation into (yet another) sex abuse scandal involving the United Nations.
        I read the details with a bone-chilling feeling of déjà-vu coursing through me – the abuse, the denial, the internal closing of the ranks, the excuses, the passing of the buck: It had all happened before. And then a quote from Jane Connors, the UN Victims’ Rights Advocate, perfectly managed to capture all my frustration in one nugget:
        “If you are not getting reports, then something is going wrong.”
        But who was she talking about exactly?
        Was she talking about the victims she is advocating for: women coerced into sex by powerful men who dangled money and food before their eyes, money and food that – because of their desperation – could make the difference between life and death for them and their families?

      • F.B.I. Says a Michigan Militia Plotted to Kidnap Gov. Gretchen Whitmer
    • Environment

      • Russian officials open criminal investigation into pollution that’s nearly wiped out marine life off Kamchatka’s coastline

        Federal investigators in Russia have launched a criminal case in response to the environmental disaster in Kamchatka that’s polluted the waters of Avacha Bay and decimated local marine life. Officials are investigating the incident as pollution of the marine environment and a violation of Russia’s rules for handling environmentally hazardous materials. If convicted, perpetrators face penalties ranging from small fines to as many as five years in prison.

      • ‘60 Minutes,’ ‘The Guardian,’ and Game-Changing New Climate Science

        On Sunday night, America met Michael Mann on 60 Minutes, one of the country’s most watched and influential television news programs for nearly 50 years now. A professor at Penn State University, Mann is one of the world’s most eminent climate scientists, and also one of the most outspoken. The 60 Minutes segment, titled “Cause and Effect,” focused on climate change and California’s ongoing record wildfires, which have burned more than 4 million acres to date. After showing the viral clip of Donald Trump telling state officials that Earth will “start getting cooler,” correspondent Scott Pelley asked Mann about the president’s additional assertion that “science doesn’t know.”

      • 60 Minutes, The Guardian, and Game-changing New Science

        To prevent a catastrophic rise in global temperature, humanity must cut emissions in half by 2030.

      • Energy

        • Lunar Lunacy: Competition, Conflict and Mining the Moon

          The discussion about mining the Moon resembles that of previous conquests: the division of territory; the grabbing of resources; language of theft and plunder.  All of this is given the gloss of manifest destiny and human experiment. Such language is also self-perpetuating: the plunderer is only as good as the amount taken; success is dependent on constant replenishment and expansion.

    • Finance

      • Dying for an i-Phone: an Interview with Jenny Chan

        It was January 2010 and Jenny Chan just heard about the suicides of workers at the Foxconn electronics plant in the Chinese city of Shenzhen.

      • The Worst Part of Trump Paying Zero in Taxes? It’s Probably Entirely Legal

        Donald Trump’s tax returns are a stark illustration of what’s broken with the US tax system: the tax code has one set of rules for the richest 0.1% and another for everyone else.

      • Covid-19 Pandemic Could Push Up to 150 Million Into ‘Extreme Poverty’ by 2021, World Bank Warns

        “Early evidence also suggests that the crisis is poised to increase inequality in much of the world,” says the new report.

      • Trump Scuttles a Fiscal Stimulus Deal…Again!

        This past Tuesday, October 6, Trump pulled the plug once again—a second time—on negotiations on a fiscal stimulus between House speaker, Pelosi, and his Treasury Secretary, Steve Mnuchin.

      • ‘Telling All Working People…to Drop Dead’: Trump Ended Covid Relief Talks After McConnell Said Republicans Wouldn’t Vote for Deal

        “Trump is turning his back on you,” said Rep. Pramila Jayapal. “He doesn’t care about workers and families. He only cares about himself.”

      • From the Jailhouse to Wall Street: How Change Happens

        Let us be very clear: the only reason that the fossil fuel industry’s largest financial backer is committing to align its business model with the Paris Agreement is activist pressure.

      • Trump Loses Yet Another Attempt in Appeals Court to Keep His Tax Returns Hidden

        A federal appeals court has unanimously rejected arguments made by lawyers for President Trump regarding a subpoena for his tax returns in a case that’s examining whether he or his business entities engaged in criminal activities over the past several years.

      • The debt crisis looming for poor countries

        A growing number of poor countries, some already in humanitarian crisis, will soon have to choose between servicing their lenders or helping their most vulnerable citizens, as the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund are warning that the tools to deal with a looming debt crisis aren’t up to the job.
        Low-income nations were due to pay at least $40 billion to banks and bondholders this year, and plans to pause some of those interest payments – let alone cancel any of the principal – are patchy and “too shallow”, according to the World Bank.
        Meanwhile, the UN’s flagship $10.19 billion appeal to raise emergency funds to help the poorest countries respond to the coronavirus pandemic and its humanitarian fallout is stuck at around $2.8 billion.
        Development economists say the impacts of COVID-19 and the global recession threaten to push 150 million people into extreme poverty and cause a “lost decade” of reverses and long-term economic “scarring”.
        World Bank chief David Malpass said this week that, unchecked, the impact of the recession could be “a threat to the maintenance of social order… and even to the defence of democracy.” Malpass said “enormous budget deficits and debt payments” are “overwhelming” some countries.
        The IMF, meanwhile, has warned that the world is at a “critical juncture” to prevent a pandemic-related “debt quagmire”, which could hit people in low-income countries the hardest. The whole “architecture” of debt owed by countries needs an overhaul, it said in a 1 October blog.

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • The Ultimate Egoist

        Just the other day, when he finally got Covid -19, President Trump declared that now he really understood the disease. Now, nine months since epidemiological experts first began to explain its extreme danger and  contagion, during which he had endless warnings from the WHO and CDC, when he participated in daily briefings on the course of the disease from the likes of Dr. Anthony Fauci, and, above all, after more than seven million Americans contracted Covid and more than 200,000 died of it. Now he finally gets it. Only AFTER HE GO IT can he understand it. Unless he gets himself, it’s not real.

      • The joys of grandparenthood: What Putin revealed in the long-awaited finale of his ‘TASS’ interview, in brief

        On Wednesday, October 7, Vladimir Putin’s 68th birthday, the state news agency TASS released the final part of a lengthy interview with the Russian President. Here’s what he said during the finale, in a nutshell.

      • Democracy Isn’t in Peril—It’s on Its Deathbed

        Trump has shown us with disturbing deft how authoritarianism doesn’t suddenly march on democracy like a military parade. Instead, it creeps in bit by bit, being normalized at every step.

      • If Trump ‘Still Has Covid, We Shouldn’t Have a Debate,’ Biden Says of Next Week’s Town Hall Event

        “There will be citizens there in attendance asking questions. So, the obligation is on Donald Trump to prove that he is not contagious.”

      • The Democrats Need to Prepare for the Supreme Court to Overturn ‘Roe v. Wade’

        At a town hall meeting on Monday, Vice President Joe Biden addressed the possibility that a Republican-controlled Supreme Court will overturn Roe v. Wade. Biden said, “The only responsible response to that would be to pass legislation making Roe the law of the land; that’s what I would do.”

      • The Man Protected by ‘Mother’ Has Rarely Dealt With a Woman Like Kamala

        Vice President Mike Pence has a huge challenge Wednesday night. As always in debates, he’s auditioning for a job, but in this election cycle, he doesn’t know which one: Is it the top one, or just Number Two? With Donald Trump still suffering from Covid-19—no matter what his doctors say—Pence has never faced a job interview this complicated. But unless Trump gets too ill—God forbid—to watch the debate, Pence has an audience of one. So he better remember he’s still Number Two.

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • Content Moderation Case Study: Suppressing Content To Try To Stop Bullying (2019)

        Summary: TikTok, like many social apps that are mainly used by a younger generation, has long faced issues around how to deal with bullying done via the platform. According to leaked documents revealed by the German site Netzpolitik, one way that the site chose to deal with the problem was through content suppression — but specifically by suppressing the content of those the company felt were more prone to being victims of bullying.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

    • Monopolies

      • House Antitrust Report Is a Bold Prescription for Curing Big Tech’s Ills

        The long-awaited report[pdf] by the House Judiciary Committee staff[1] on Big Tech’s monopoly power hits all the right notes—and just a few wrong ones. Following a year of hearings and research, the staff of the Subcommittee on Antitrust found that Facebook, Google, Amazon, and Apple all have either significant market power or outright monopoly power in a variety of markets. Many of the report’s recommendations echo calls EFF has also made, proof of just how obviously effective, needed, and common-sense they are.

        The power of Big Tech weakens innovation, erodes privacy, and undermines “political and economic liberties,” says the report. We’re pleased to see the report go beyond U.S. antitrust law’s narrow focus on consumer prices. The report also recommends many of the interventions that EFF has championed: new requirements for interoperability, a tougher standard for approving mergers and acquisitions, and stepping up the DOJ and Federal Trade Commission enforcement of the antitrust laws.

      • Stop Pretending The Trump GOP Genuinely Cares About Monopoly Power

        Over the last year or two, a constant drumbeat has permeated tech news coverage. It goes something like this: the GOP is embracing a “populist” agenda by standing up to “big tech.” The modern Trump GOP (with heroic consumer champions like Josh Hawley and Marsha Blackburn in the lead) we’re told, have become stalwart opponents of monopolization, especially in tech. They’re just super concerned about what this power means for free speech, especially given that conservative voices are routinely “censored” on the internet.

      • Facebook Internal Memo Reveals Challenges Social Media Companies Face In Protecting Democracy

        Is social media good or bad for democracy?

      • Patents

        • The Public Interest Defence, and the Public Interest Offence – What Is The Way Forward In This Pandemic?

          On December 24th, 2019, the Delhi High Court had granted an ad-interim injunction in favour of Bristol Myers Squibb Holdings Ireland (BMS) for the infringement of patent number 247381 associated with the drug ‘Apixaban’ by Indoco Remedies Ltd.’s (Indoco) ‘APIXABID’. Recently, Indoco had approached the Delhi Court on ‘public interest’ grounds, requesting permission for the sale of 58,000 strips of Apixabid, manufactured by them prior to the passing of the 2019 order. Indoco’s public interest defence was based on the prevailing pandemic conditions in the country, and it placed literature before the court for establishing that Apixaban is necessary for Covid-19 treatment. The court refused to lift the injunction and stated that Indoco had not put forth any evidence for demonstrating that there was a shortage of Apixaban or that it was not reasonably affordable. It found that the material placed before it did not show any overwhelming public interest that would justify the relief claimed. The court upheld the single-judge bench’s order, finding that since Indoco had manufactured the impugned strips in anticipation of the injunction order, the relief could not be allowed. This is perhaps the first judicial look at ‘public interest’ in the context of patents and Covid-19, and is worth further examination from that lens.

          [...]

          In Bayer v. Union of India, the IPAB emphasised the importance of ‘public interest’ while upholding the grant of India’s only compulsory license(CL) under Section 84 of the Patents Act, 1970. In this case, Natco proved all the three conditions under Section 84(1) – first, reasonable requirements of the public are not satisfied; second, the invention is not available at a reasonably affordable price and third, the patent is not being worked in India. In Bayer v. Union of India, the Bombay High Court stated that it is a matter of public interest that the Cancer medicine, ‘Nexavar’, ‘is made available to the society in adequate numbers and at a reasonable price.’

          In Novartis v. Cipla (Novartis), the Delhi High Court discussed at length the applicability of public interest doctrine in patent infringement cases. The court relied on Roche v. Cipla (Roche) and distinguishing between the cases stated that – in Roche, the patent in question was under cloud and the defendants had raised a credible defence, and in Novartis, the patent was valid and no credible defence was raised. In Novartis, the court ruled that Cipla was guilty of infringement of Novartis’ patents and had raised public interest grounds in order to avoid the injunction. It was held that merely providing articles and publications that demonstrate the requirement of a drug is not adequate, the defendant needs to establish that there is a shortage of the products in question.

          Justice Prabha Sridevan’s recent article “Is the right to exclusivity a Hamlet question?” published in South Centre speaks directly to the issue at hand and is a wonderful read on her thoughts on how courts should be looking at this ‘hamlet’ question. She ends her piece with these lines:

          “The relationship between the private rights and the public health rights should be spatially expanded in tune with the Constitutional aspirations rather than narrowly viewed as a private grasp of the patent owning few. The Court shall explore the various models of rewarding or compensating the inventor, but the Court shall and is bound to defer to the always superior claim of the right to health over right to exclusivity. Today Hamlet’s question must be answered in favour of life.”

          [...]

          Whenever new COVID-related treatments and vaccines are invented, invocation of Section 92 would be favourable vis-à-vis invocation of Section 66. In the long term, utilisation of Section 92 would perhaps be wiser as it may not alienate big pharmaceutical companies to the extent Section 66 would. The Section 92 approach is sustainable, in the sense that licenses could be given with a sunset clause, resulting in them being withdrawn as soon as the pandemic is over.

          This is of course assuming that a generic company is willing to manufacture the drug. However, let us also recognise that our legislators have ensured we are not at the mercy of business choices of domestic firms either. If generics don’t step up to the role of applying for CLs or otherwise manufacturing the drugs, the government also has the option of exercising Section 47(4) of the Patents Act – which stipulates that as a condition of the grant of the patent – the government can, without any pre-conditions or procedural requirements – import any medicine or drug for the purpose of distribution (i.e., not sale) through its own hospitals/dispensaries or any hospital/dispensary notified to do so on its behalf. So, in the situation where there is a dire need of wide spread medicines or drugs, this is an available option.

          The present pandemic is the priority, but with epidemics expected to become more common, it is essential to think about the future implications of the measures taken today. It should be ensured that whatever measures are adopted, they are not undertaken in such a manner that disregards future complications.

          Unlike many other countries in the global South, India has production capabilities in order to successfully manufacture the quantum of vaccines required for overcoming the pandemic in India. Unfortunately though, India hasn’t started entering into any advance purchasing agreements, at least as of Sept 18, 2020, when this was acknowledged in the Lok Sabha. There are already signs that there will need to be significant private spending when the Covid vaccine does come out eventually. Dealing with ‘drug nationalism’ and corporate profits also forms a part of the struggle against COVID-19 and to prevent the prolonging of the crisis in India – domestic manufacturing as well as active government action and forethought will become vital.s

        • French Court Awards Record Damages Judgment

          The case is Eli Lilly v. Fresenius Kabi, Tribunal Judiciare de Paris, 11 Sept. 2020, Docket No. 17/10421, and the award comes to €28,000,000. Pierre Véron recently published a post on the decision EPLaw, with links to his more extended commentary and copies of the judgment in the original French and in English translation. As he points out, this is one of many European decisions involving Lilly’s patents on the use of pemetrexed disodium for treatment of lung cancer. In this particular case, the court found the patent in suit valid and infringed. To understand the full context of the decision, including a comparison of the various European judgments involving pemetrexed, read M. Véron’s commentary.

        • FR – ELI LILLY V. FRESENIUS KABI / COMMENT PIERRE VÉRON

          Eli Lilly and Company and Lilly France v. Fresenius Kabi France and Fresenius Kabi Groupe France, Judiciary Court of Paris, France, 11 September 2020, Docket № 17/10421, by Pierre Véron, Honorary President, EPLAW

          Joining a majority of European Courts, the Paris court has held that Eli Lilly’s patent, claiming the combined administration of pemetrexed disodium with vitamin B12, is infringed by the marketing of pemetrexed diacid, and it has awarded the largest ever patent infringement damages award in Europe (28,000,000 €).

        • “The Federal Patent Court is paying for a political mistake”

          I don’t believe that was the federal government’s strategy. That wouldn’t make sense, for several reasons. Firstly, the UPC would remove the prohibition of double protection and many companies would then validate national and European patents in parallel. Secondly, the UPC would not be able to commence operations on a large scale so quickly. In any case, the UPC would not cause the Federal Patent Court to run out of work for years to come. Thirdly, the age structure at the court is so high in terms of the average age of the judges that one could hire additional staff in good conscience. The court could reduce a surplus within a few years by not filling the positions of those who retire.

        • Around the IP Blogs

          The SpicyIP Blog reported on what may well be one of the first covid-related IP cases. In that case , an Indian pharma company, Indoco, approached the Delhi High Court requesting permission to sale a drug, used as anticoagulant medication, for covid-19 treatment. Such sales had previously been prohibited by the court as part of an ongoing patent infringement lawsuit, initiated by the Indoco’s competitor, BMS. Indoco, invoked “public interest” grounds to justify the sales, but the court denied lifting the temporary injunction.

          [...]

          The Juve Patent Blog shared an interview with Rainer Engels, former judge of the German Federal Patent Court. Engels expressed his views about the structural reforms required in the German system, the length of proceedings, and how the Unified Patent Court (or its lack of existence) may have influenced developments in Germany.

        • Submissions by third parties in applications

          In my patent class, I just had my students act like patent-examiners and write rejections for pending patent claims. These are all real-cases that recently published and have not yet been examined.

        • New anti-evergreening patent law in Ukraine

          In this guest post, patent expert Dr Olga Gurgula reports on updates from Ukraine as well as highlighting important next steps for the Ukrainain Patent Office. Olga is a Lecturer in Intellectual Property Law at Brunel Law School, Brunel University London and Visiting Fellow at the Oxford Martin Programme on Affordable Medicines, University of Oxford. Here is what she has to say about the latest edition of Terrell on the Law of Patents. Here’s what she says:

          The topic of patent evergreening has been in the news for quite some time. For Ukraine, it has been an especially painful issue, where the majority of people suffering from illness pay for medicines prescribed by their doctors from their own pockets, and the prescriptions are typically for patent-protected brand-name drugs. Not surprisingly, therefore, that the statistics are far from positive – the majority of the Ukrainian population is not able to buy expensive medicines, including those required for life-threatening diseases like HIV, hepatitis C and cancer. The WHO, in its 2019 report, noted that ‘spending on medicines was reported as being the main driver of financial hardship for Ukrainian households’. Therefore, the need for more affordable medicines to be made available for the Ukrainian population has been one of the key issues in recent years. To achieve this, a number of reforms have been put in place, including amendments to the Patent Act 1994.

          [...]

          While these changes to the patent law have the potential of improving access to medicines in Ukraine, it is now the task of the Ukrainian Patent Office to apply this provision. Therefore, it is important that the Patent Office bears in mind the aim of this provision when interpreting and applying it to specific cases. In particular, the addition of this provision to the Patent Act was a strategic policy decision of Ukraine. Its goal is to improve access to affordable medicines by preventing the patenting of trivial modifications of existing medicines that enable pharmaceutical companies to maintain their market monopoly while bringing little or no benefits to the patient. To help the Patent Office in establishing a uniform and predictable practice, it may be useful to develop specific guidance on how such pharmaceutical inventions should be assessed.

        • Software Patents

          • Donate now! to save Europe from Software Patents, says FFII

            The proposed Unified Patent Court would create case law in favour of patentability of software, using the “technical effect” or “as such” loopholes, as confirmed by the European Commission in its 2012 Memo on the UPC.

            Software patents have negative effects on job creation, as small software companies don’t have the resources to defend themselves in court. More and more litigating companies (also called “patent trolls”) are trying to extract money from software companies.

            The UPC is shiedled from any intervention of the European Court of Justice (CJEU) in patent law, as the European Patent Convention (EPC) is international law and not EU law.

            [...]

            The UPCA also suffers from non compliance with the ECHR art6 “a tribunal established by law” as its rules of procedure are made by an administrative committee. It is also not in compliance with the Rule of Law principle, where the administration (the EPO) cannot be sued for maladministration (refusal to grant for example). The UPC will also make a simple court case more expensive.

            FFII is calling on a public debate within the responsible committees (Legal Affairs and Culture). The vote in the Bundestag is foreseen to be happening with the vote of the Budget in late October or early November, because of the logistics required for the 2/3 majority.

            If the Bundestag ratifies the UPC and fails to send it back for renegotiation, we will have to file a Constitutional Complaint within 30 days, meaning the complaint has to be ready in advance. Although we have a skeleton ready, we are still looking for a lawyer with knowledge in EU law or Constitutional law.

          • $3000 for Trust & Verify Data Protection Prior Art

            On October 8, 2020, Unified Patents added a new PATROLL contest, with a $3,000 cash prize, seeking prior art on all of the limitations of dependent Claim 10, including all of the limitations of independent Claim 4 of US Patent No. 7,162,735. This patent is owned by Trust & Verify Data Protection, LLC, an NPE. The ’735 patent generally relates o an arrangement with a protected code that comprises incomplete executable code and a call instruction to a security code such that when the security code is executed, it replaces the call instruction such that the executable code of the protected code is complete.

      • Trademarks

        • News from the virtual Observatory meeting

          After a warm welcome from EUIPO Executive Director Mr Christian Archambeau on day 1, MEP members shared their concerns about the growing proportion (6.8%) of counterfeit products that are entering the European market.

          They all agree that EU-wide collaboration is required, stressing that infringement of IP rights will not be tolerated and that new technologies may support us with addressing this.

          Mr Paul Maier provided an overview of the main activities carried out by the EUIPO through the Observatory. Several completed and planned studies and publications were shared. Those interested can find them here.

          Mr Jacky Marteau of OLAF shared the worrying substantial growth in sales of substandard medical products, connected to COVID-19, and stressed the need for collaboration to address not only this but any counterfeit product that enters the European market.

          A number of speakers provided additional insights into how COVID-19 related counterfeit products are impacting EU markets, sharing examples of fake products that have been seized and that can bring harm to people. An increase is seen not only in medical-related products but also other consumer goods, due to the growth of online shopping.

          Closing day 1, Mr Lopes de Mota, Portuguese Supreme Court judge, stressed the need to act against counterfeits because we need to protect the fundamental rights on which the EU has been grounded.

        • Geographical Indications: India’s PGI application for ‘Basmati’

          On 11th September 2020, the European Commission (EC) published India’s Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) application for ‘Basmati’ under EU Regulation No. 1151/2012 (Regulation). While the origin of Basmati has been contested within India itself, there is opposition by other countries in the Indian subcontinent. Here we identify two critical issues that lead to wider debates in GI scholarship. First, how are GI claims for products with a cross-border origin resolved and what requirements will India need to fulfill? Second, what is India’s objective for protecting Basmati in the EU market and whether GI protection is an adequate strategy for it.

          ‘Basmati’ has been a registered GI in India since 2016 but only seven states can affix the same to its produce. The origin of Basmati within India is controversial owing to Madhya Pradesh’s persistent claim to be included as a producer, a claim that has been repeatedly rejected. The reputation and origin of Basmati outside India is shared by Pakistan, a fact recognized in inter alia the EU’s 2004 agreement with India and Pakistan, APEDA’s own observations in the ‘Sir Basmati’ trademark dispute before the CJEU (APEDA is the registered proprietor of Basmati in India), and several scholarly works. In this light, proving that ‘the geographical area’ as per Article 8 of the Regulation is limited to India seems challenging. Another interesting ground relevant for the present dispute and possible opposition is Article 10 read in conjunction with Articles 5(2) and 7, which require the applicant to establish appropriate linkage between the quality, reputation and other characteristics of the GI – here: Basmati – with its geographical origin. For countries seeking protection in multiple EU member states, one option is an application under Article 49 of the Regulation. This allows for more than one country (either EU or non-EU) to jointly apply for protection in the EU internal market. There are several examples of such cross-border products. However, diplomatic ties between these countries are stronger than those between India and Pakistan which makes filing a joint application in this case difficult. Efforts to initiate joint registration for Basmati since 2005 have not yielded any effective results. In fact, there have been counter moves to challenge GI rights in both countries by producer organizations.

      • Copyrights

        • SENADI Ecuador launched the dedicated website for the Marrakesh VIP Treaty

          On 22 September 2020, the National Service of Intellectual Rights of Ecuador (SENADI Ecuador) launched the dedicated website for the Marrakesh Treaty to facilitate access to published works for persons who are blind, visually impaired or otherwise print disabled (Marrakesh VIP Treaty).

          The Marrakesh VIP Treaty, which has been in force in Ecuador since on 30 September 2016, requires “Contracting Parties to introduce a standard set of limitations and exceptions to copyright rules in order to permit reproduction, distribution and making available of published works in formats designed to be accessible to VIPs [blind, visually impaired, and otherwise print disabled], and to permit exchange of these works across borders by organizations that serve those beneficiaries”.

          Brazil, Ecuador, and Paraguay proposed the Treaty during the 18th session of the WIPO Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights in May 2009.

Links 8/10/2020: Endless OS 3.8.7 and Mercurial to Dump SHA-1

Posted in News Roundup at 7:02 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • Kubuntu Focus M2 Launched As Latest KDE-Friendly Laptop

        Launched at the start of the year was the Kubuntu Focus as a polished KDE laptop while now it’s been succeeded by a second-generation model.

        The second-generation Kubuntu Focus laptop is known as the Kubuntu Focus “M2″ and features an updated processor, Kubuntu 20.04 LTS by default rather than 18.04, and other new hardware upgrade options.

      • Kubuntu Focus M2 Linux laptop from $1,795

        If you are in the market for a Linux laptop you may be interested in the Kubuntu Focus M2 offering a second generation laptop created by Kubuntu Focus. The finely-tuned Focus virtually eliminates the need to configure the operating system on arrival offering users the familiar KDE desktop on top of the industry standard Ubuntu 20.04 LTS.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • BSD Now #371: Wildcards running wild

        New Project: zedfs.com, TrueNAS CORE Ready for Deployment, IPC in FreeBSD 11: Performance Analysis, Unix Wildcards Gone Wild, Unix Wars, and more

      • Destination Linux 194: Interview with Marcin Jakubowski of Open Source Ecology

        This week we have an incredible interview in store for you with the founder of Open Source Ecology, Marcin Jakubowski, a company that is using open source to change industrial machines, and much more, as we know it. In our Gaming section, we’ll discuss the new Left 4 Dead DLC that dropped from Valve! Later in the show we’ll give you our popular tips/tricks and software picks. Plus so much more, on this week’s episode of Destination Linux.

    • Kernel Space

      • Is it possible to implement a Linux kernel patch without disrupting other applications?

        If you’re running your system with Linux servers, you could implement a couple of methods to keep your system kernels up-to-date. Let’s look at some of the most common.

      • Saying goodbye to set_fs()

        The set_fs() function dates back to the earliest days of the Linux kernel; it is a key part of the machinery that keeps user-space and kernel-space memory separated from each other. It is also easy to misuse and has been the source of various security problems over the years; kernel developers have long wanted to be rid of it. They won’t completely get their wish in the 5.10 kernel but, as the result of work that has been quietly progressing for several months, the end of set_fs() will be easily visible at that point.
        This 2017 article describes set_fs() and its history in some detail. The short version is that set_fs() sets the location of the boundary between the user-space portion of the address space and the kernel’s part. Any virtual address that is below the boundary set by the last set_fs() call on behalf of a given process is fair game for that process to access, though the memory permissions stored in the page tables still apply. Anything above that limit belongs to the kernel and is out of bounds.

        Normally, that boundary should be firmly fixed in place. When the need to move it arises, the reason is usually the same: some kernel subsystem needs to invoke a function that is intended to access user-space data, but on a kernel-space address. Think, for example, of the simple task of reading the contents of a file into a memory buffer; the read() system call will do that, but it also performs all of the usual access checks, meaning that it will refuse to read into a kernel-space buffer. If a kernel subsystem must perform such a read, it first calls set_fs() to disable those checks; if all goes well, it remembers to restore the old boundary with another set_fs() call when the work is done.

        Naturally, history has proved that all does not always go well. It’s thus not surprising that the development community has wanted to rid itself of set_fs() for many years. It’s also unsurprising that this hasn’t happened, though. The kernel project does not lack for developers, but there is always a shortage of people who are willing and able to do this sort of deep infrastructural work; it tends to not feature highly in any company’s marketing plan. So the task of removing set_fs() has languished for years.

      • LVFS tames firmware updates

        Keeping device firmware up-to-date can be a challenge for end users. Firmware updates are often important for correct behavior, and they can have security implications as well. The Linux Vendor Firmware Service (LVFS) project is playing an increasing role in making firmware updates more straightforward for both end users and vendors; LVFS just announced its 20-millionth firmware download. Since even a wireless mouse dongle can pose a security threat, the importance of simple, reliable, and easily applied firmware updates is hard to overstate.

        Red Hat’s Richard Hughes started LVFS in 2016, and in 2019 the Linux Foundation took the project under its wing. Since its inception, LVFS has grown to provide firmware updates for over 2,000 devices from approximately 100 different vendors.

        In a 2019 presentation [YouTube] (slides [PDF]), Hughes discussed firmware updates in terms of human, organizational, and technical complexity. As he explained, end users generally don’t know what exact hardware they have in their machines, whether its firmware can be updated, if that firmware needs to be updated, where to get that update, or how to apply it. Additionally, users often do not understand the importance of these updates; as Hughes pointed out, “updating your mouse firmware when your mouse is working fine seems ridiculous.”

        Further, one vendor’s hardware often contains updatable components from another vendor, and each only provides firmware for the hardware that it is directly responsible for. Taken together, as Hughes said, “users have no chance of getting this right.” LVFS addresses this complexity by providing a centralized repository of firmware and the associated metadata, bringing vendors and end users together. LVFS, however, is more than a centralized firmware distribution site; in the words of Hughes, the LVFS provides “a pipeline right from the firmware author, all the way to the end user.”

      • AMD RAPL PowerCap Patches Updated For Linux – Now Include Family 19h (Zen 3)

        Patches from a Google engineer allow run-time average power limiting (RAPL) support for AMD Zen processors within the Linux PowerCap driver.

        Earlier this year was AMD Zen RAPL support in the Perf subsystem while this more recent activity for AMD RAPL has been about the PowerCap code. The Linux PowerCap framework was originally conceived by Intel but AMD Zen CPUs have similar MSRs available for supporting limiting the CPU TDP and also reading the current energy usage. With these patches /sys/class/powercap/intel-rapl/intel-rapl:0/energy_uj is the latest way of exposing the AMD CPU energy usage under Linux.

    • Applications

      • 5 Best Free and Open Source OS-level Virtualization

        A container is an operating-system-level virtualization method for running multiple isolated Linux systems on a control host using a single Linux kernel.

        There’s an important distinction between OS-level virtualization and virtualization. The former is often known as containers.

        OS-level virtualization (containers) share the same operating system kernel and isolate the application processes from the rest of the system. For example: ARM Linux systems run ARM Linux containers, x86 Linux systems run x86 Linux containers, x86 Windows systems run x86 Windows containers. Linux containers are extremely portable, but they must be compatible with the underlying system.

    • Instructionals/Technical

    • Games

      • Ziggurat 2 – it looks awesome and it appears they’re planning Linux support

        Milkstone Studios have announced Ziggurat 2, a follow-up to the excellent first-person dungeon-crawler and it looks like it’s going to be a lot of fun.

        In the sequel Milkstone say they’ve redesigned it from the ground up, with the aim to take everything good about the original and improve every part of it with a “smoother and faster experience, with quicker, more intense sessions, and more interactive and fulfilling progression”.

      • Godot Engine pulls in another full-time developer to work on web infrastructure

        Sounds like things continue going well for Godot Engine, as a free and open source game engine it’s made huge leaps over the last year and they’re pulling in more developers.

        The next is Hugo Locurcio, also known as “Calinou” who has now been hired full-time to work on Godot’s web infrastructure to ensure it’s ready for future progress. Locurcio has been contributing to Godot for a number of years across various areas and they also developed things like the nightly builds, a build options generator and the class reference status viewer.

      • 8-bit blood-soaked Horror RPG Sunshine Manor gets a free Prologue and a Kickstarter

        Acting as a prequel to Camp Sunshine, Fossil Games have announced the 8-bit blood-soaked Horror RPG Sunshine Manor.

        You play as Ada, dared to spend the night in the haunted Sunshine Manor where Ada encounters ghosts, demons, blood-soaked horror and more. Unlike the previous game, Fossil Games will be supporting Linux directly this time and they’ve just released a free version with Sunshine Manor Prologue so you can try it right now to get a feel for it.

      • X4: Cradle of Humanity expansion delayed until Q1 2021

        Egosoft have confirmed that the huge upcoming X4: Cradle of Humanity expansion is going to see a delayed release as getting it out in 2020 is just not achievable for them.

        Why the delay? They didn’t mention any specifics, just that since unveiling it they said it has “become clear” that the originally announced 2020 release goal just can’t be hit. The delay will ensure they can “improve the quality of X4: Cradle of Humanity to meet both your and our own expectations” and they mentioned more information about it to come over the next few weeks.

      • New Steam Client Update Brings Linux Fixes, Other Improvements

        The October 8 Steam Client update is here a month after the previous update, which was a major release with many changes. This update isn’t that big, but it brings various improvements for Linux users, such as an updated ‘scout’ steam runtime to version 0.20200910.0, a much-improved container runtime mode, especially around shared directories and DNS resolution, and an improved runtime information tool.

        For all supported platforms, the update changes the download throttling setting in the Downloads page to be a custom value in Kbps. It also updates the Library to fix an issue that prevented the achievement unlock percentage from being displayed on game pages, as well as to improve the alignment of controls in the play bar on game pages.

    • Distributions

      • System76 continue improving Pop!_OS with fractional scaling now live

        Pop!_OS is the Linux distribution based on Ubuntu from hardware vendor System76, and they continue making the experience super-slick with new features.

        Following on from the seriously cool auto-tiling stacks, they’ve now added in another major post-release feature. Something that users of 4K screens will enjoy, which is fractional display scaling. If you’re on Pop!_OS, all you need to do is check for upgrades your usual way and you will get it. This enables you to scale up your desktop display to a few different points if you find things a little too small.

        You will find the new options in the Displays menu in the settings as shown below (click to enlarge)…

      • New Releases

        • Endless OS 3.8.7

          Endless OS 3.8.7 was released for existing users today, Oct 5th, 2020.

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

      • Screenshots/Screencasts

        • Ubuntu Cinnamon 20.10 Remix Beta

          Today we are looking at the stunning Ubuntu Cinnamon 20.10 Remix Beta. It comes fully packed with Cinnamon 4.6, Linux Kernel 5.8, and uses about 1.2GB of ram when idling. This distro has really been maturing and looks and feels great! Enjoy!

        • Ubuntu Cinnamon 20.10 Remix Beta Run Through

          In this video, we are looking at Ubuntu Cinnamon 20.10 Remix Beta.

        • Ubuntu Unity 20.10 Remix

          Today we are looking at Ubuntu Unity 20.10 Remix. It comes fully packed with the Unity Desktop, Nemo 4.6 as the File Manager, Linux Kernel 5.8, and uses about 1.2GB of ram when idling. It is fast, beautiful, pure, and should be a great release Enjoy!

        • Ubuntu Unity 20.10 Remix Beta Run Through

          In this video, we are looking at Ubuntu Unity 20.10 Remix Beta.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • Oracle Linux 7.9 Released with New Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel Based on Linux 5.4 LTS

          Oracle Linux 7 Update 9 is here to introduce the Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel (UEK) Release 6 as the default kernel for x86_64 (64-bit) and AArch64 (ARM64) platforms, which is based on the mainline Linux 5.4 LTS kernel and introduces numerous new features and improvements for top-notch hardware support.

          These include zero copy networking to boost the network performance and enable building of faster networking products, support for the Btrfs file system, support for the OCFS2 file system, DTrace support, as well as enhanced security and virtualization support for the AArch64 (ARM64) platform.

        • Red Hat launches Red Hat Accelerators, an enterprise customer advocacy program

          Red Hat announced the introduction of its enterprise customer advocacy program, Red Hat Accelerators. Drawing on its extensive community-building history, the customer-facing program serves as a natural extension of its customer-focused approach to both its open source and enterprise product portfolio, enacted to form deeper and more engaging relationships with its customers.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Canonical – Supermicro partnership at the NFV&MEC Plugtests 2020

          The NFV&MEC Plugtests 2020, hosted remotely during the week of June 15-19th 2020 by ETSI, offered network function virtualisation (NFV) and mobile edge computing (MEC) solution providers, hardware vendors and other companies involved in open source initiatives an opportunity to meet and assess the level of interoperability between their solutions. An established leader in the NFV space, Canonical participated in this event and partnered with Supermicro to provide an NFV stack for the plugtests sessions. Detailed outcomes of this cooperation can be found in the official ETSI Plugtest Report.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Protect your network with open source tools

        System integrity is essential, especially when you’re charged with safeguarding other people’s personal details on your network. It’s critical that system administrators are familiar with security tools, whether their purview is a home, a small business, or an organization with hundreds or thousands of employees.

        Cybersecurity involves securing networks against unauthorized access. However, there are many attack vectors out there that most people don’t consider. The cliché of a lone hacker manually dueling with firewall rules until they gain access to a network is popular—but wildly inaccurate. Security breaches happen through automation, malware, phishing, ransomware, and more. You can’t directly fight every attack as it happens, and you can’t count on every computer user to exercise common sense. Therefore, you have to design a system that resists intrusion and protects users against outside attacks as much as it protects them from their own mistakes.

      • FSF

        • GNU Projects

          • GIMP 2.10.22 Is Released With AVIF Support And Improved Support For Many Other File Formats

            GIMP 2.10.22 has a lot of new features for a minor version bump, most of which are related to image file formats. There’s support for the AVIF image format based on the AV1 video format, 10 and 12 bit AVIF and HEIF images, better JPEG and WebP detection and better support for files from good old Paint Shop Pro.

            [...]

            AVIF is a very well-compressed image format based on the AV1 video encoding standard. GIMP 2.10.22 introduces support for this image format making it possible to open and save those files in GIMP. Chrome and Chromium has had support for AVIF images since version 85, and Firefox has in theory, but not in practice, had support for AVIF images since version 77. Enabling AVIF support in Mozilla Firefox requires you to change image.avif.enabled in about:config to true which means that web developers can’t rely on AVIF support in Mozilla Firefox until that setting becomes a default (or Mozilla decides to remotely enable it using the “normandy” back-door built into Firefox).

          • Toward a “modern” Emacs

            It has only been a few months since the Emacs community went through an extended discussion on how to make the Emacs editor “popular again”. As the community gears up for the Emacs 28 development cycle, (after the Emacs 27.1 release in August) that discussion has returned with a vengeance. The themes of this discussion differ somewhat from the last; developers are concerned about making Emacs — an editor with decades of history — seem “modern” to attract new users.

            The May 2020 discussion focused on restoring the popularity that Emacs is felt to have enjoyed in the past. It could well be that there are more Emacs users now than at any time in the past but the editor’s share of the total computing user base has clearly shrunk over time. The current discussion has a similar but different focus: attracting new users to Emacs, an editor that is widely seen as being outdated and as having a difficult and intimidating learning curve.

            [...]

            There was some discussion of adopting the Solarized color palette in particular. As Dmitry Gutov pointed out, though, Solarized makes for a rather low-contrast experience; a look at this screenshot of Emacs with Solarized colors makes that clear enough.

            Another area where Emacs is insufficiently “modern”, it seems, has to do with keyboard and mouse bindings. On the keyboard side, users have come to expect certain actions from certain keystrokes; ^X to cut a selection, ^V to paste it, etc. These bindings are easily had by turning on the Cua mode, but new users tend not to know about this mode or how to enable it. Many participants in the discussion said that this mode should be on by default.

        • Licensing/Legal

      • Programming/Development

        • Mercurial planning to transition away from SHA-1

          Recently, the Mercurial project has been discussing its plans to migrate away from the compromised SHA-1 hashing algorithm in favor of a more secure alternative. So far, the discussion is in the planning stages of algorithm selection and migration strategy, with a general transition plan for users. The project, for the moment, is favoring the BLAKE2 hashing algorithm.

          In July 2020, Joerg Sonnenberger started the conversation on moving away from SHA-1. Sonnenberger focused on four major aspects of the transition: which hash function to use, updating the test suite, updating the code base, and backward compatibility.

        • Python

          • Sebastian Witowski: Membership Testing

            Membership testing means checking if a collection of items (a list, a set, a dictionary, etc.) contains a specific item. For example, checking if a list of even numbers contains number 42. It’s a quite common operation, so let’s see how to do it properly.

          • Python Morsels: Looping over multiple iterables at once

            Often we have to loop over two iterables at the same time. An iterable is anything you’re able to loop over with a for loop.

            Lists are one type of iterable in Python that we are using here.

          • Python Morsels: Looping with Indexes

            If you’ve used another programming language before, you’ve probably used indexes while looping. Often when you’re trying to loop with indexes in Python, you’ll find that you actually care about counting upward as you’re looping, not actual indexes.

        • Shell/Bash/Zsh/Ksh

          • New features in the fish shell

            Fish (the “friendly interactive shell”) has the explicit goal of being more user-friendly than other shells. It features a modern command-line interface with syntax highlighting, tab completion, and auto-suggestions out of the box (all with no configuration required). Unlike many of its competitors, it doesn’t care about being POSIX-compliant but attempts to blaze its own path. Since our last look at the project, way back in 2013, it has seen lots of new releases with features, bug fixes, and refinements aimed at appealing to a wide range of users. Some of the biggest additions landed in the 3.0 release, but we will also describe some other notable changes from version 2.1 up through latest version.

  • Leftovers

    • Protest Song Of The Week: ‘Amendment 13 (Homo Detritus) By Jesse Jett

      It is a powerful documentation of a difficult two-month period, which highlights the government’s failed COVID response and how the virus exposed the failures of capitalism. It also decries a two-party system that is failing to offer a true alternative.

    • Looking After An Aquarium – How Much Work Is Involved?

      Fish are such easy pets to look after, right? You just pop them in a tank, feed them once a day and change the water now and then. Easy. This post explores how much work is involved in looking after an aquarium.

    • Education

      • History Teachers and “Patriotic Education”

        Conservatives are kicking around high school history teachers like a “political football.” The Washington Post recently reported that, “Trump seeks to turn local schools into another front in the culture war he champions, positioning history teachers as opponents of American greatness along with kneeling football players.” The President declared his war on history teachers at the first White House Conference on American History: “We must clear away the twisted web of lies in our schools and classrooms and teach our children the magnificent truth about our country. We want our sons and daughters to know that they are the citizens of the most exceptional nation in the history of the world.”

    • Health/Nutrition

      • The NFL Season Could Be Facing a Covid Collapse

        This isn’t just about hindsight. It’s about wondering why people in positions of great power still act as if they haven’t learned anything about the coronavirus and how it spreads. No, I’m not talking about that belching gas ball of typhus otherwise known as the GOP. I’m talking about Commissioner Roger Goodell, who with one awful decision may have cracked the delicate eggshell surrounding the 2020 NFL season.

      • Former CDC Chief Urges Current Director to Publicly Denounce Trump Handling of Pandemic as ‘Slaughter’

        “Despite the White House spin attempts, this will go down as a colossal failure of the public health system of this country. The biggest challenge in a century and we let the country down.”

      • ‘Out of an Abundance of Caution,’ Says Bernie Sanders, ‘We Should Expand Medicare to Cover Everyone in America’

        “Mr. President: You attack ‘socialized medicine’ every single day. Well, let’s be clear. The excellent care you received at Walter Reed was at a 100% government-funded, government-run hospital. For Trump, ‘socialized medicine’ is bad for everyone but himself.”

      • “Don’t Fear the Virus” Is Genocidal Rhetoric. We Mourn in Rebellion.

        Trump holds up his recovery as evidence that the time for fear has passed. But migrant children and others caged in the path of COVID-19 will not be flown to Walter Reed Hospital. In this episode, Kelly Hayes explains why “don’t fear the virus” is genocidal rhetoric.

      • Trump and Covid-19—The Odds

        It’s now reasonable for us to discuss how these next few days might define the future of the presidential election, and perhaps of the United States.

      • On the Road During a Pandemic, From Austin, Texas, to Metro D.C.

        Before. “Nope. You’ve now just infected your other clean hand with germs,” my wife’s OB/GYN dryly instructed. She then put on her own latex gloves and demonstrated how to put them on and take them off while keeping your hands sterile.

      • Into the Light Vaccine Injury Awareness Walk 2020: Michigan antivaxxers and COVID-19 grifters gather

        My last post was about how the antivaccine movement has so easily allied itself with the network of COVID-19 deniers, antimaskers, and even QAnon conspiracy theorists, which makes it appropriate, albeit depressing, to take note of an event occurring in my own state that reflects that confluence. It’s called Into the Light: Vaccine Injury Awareness Walk 2020, and it’s taking place in Grand Rapids on Saturday morning. Its speaker lineup is a veritable who’s who of the antivaccine movement in Michigan:

      • A Crop Pandemic Would Be as Devastating for Biodiversity and Food Security as COVID-19
      • Mary Trump: My Uncle Is Responsible for 210,000 Deaths and Is Now “Willfully Getting People Sick”

        As President Trump compares the deadly COVID-19 outbreak to the flu despite being hospitalized for the virus, we speak to his only niece, Mary Trump, about his increasingly erratic behavior in the final weeks of the election season and how his family views illness as a weakness. “To be treated for something is to admit that you need the treatment, and I don’t see him having any self-awareness,” she says. “Clearly the people closest to him don’t care about his well-being. If they did, he’d still be at Walter Reed.” She also warns that the “worst-case scenario” would be for President Trump to overcome his illness relatively quickly, because it would convince him to continue ignoring the pandemic. Mary Trump is a clinical psychologist. In July, she overcame Trump’s legal threats and published the now best-selling book, “Too Much and Never Enough: How My Family Created the World’s Most Dangerous Man.”

      • I Was Prescribed Trump’s Steroid. It Made Me Feel Invincible

        Medically speaking, it was a miracle drug. Dex restored nearly half of the hearing I’d already lost. But it also made me high as a kite, like I’d just mainlined a potent mixture of espresso beans and psychotropics. I could feel my heartbeat in my eyeballs. I was euphoric. I made elaborate plans for the months following my surgery — including another tour with my band, Andrew Leahey & the Homestead — despite my doctor’s warning that I wouldn’t be well enough to hit the road until the following summer. Not even the anxiety of my upcoming operation could dampen my buzz. To borrow a phrase I heard somewhere recently, I felt better than I did 20 years ago.

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • 16K COVID-19 Cases Go Missing In UK Due To Government’s Use Of Excel CSVs For Tracking

          Yes, yes, you’re sick of hearing about COVID-19. Me too. But the dominant force of 2020 continues to provide news, often times with a technology focus. This mismanaged pandemic has already given us an explosion of esports, students gaming remote learning systems, and enough dystopia to make George Orwell vomit in his grave.

        • Microsoft Office 365, Outlook down again
        • Microsoft 365 services hit by yet another outage, network change blamed

          Microsoft’s 365 services have been hit by another outage, beginning at about 2pm EST on Wednesday (5am AEDT Thursday) and affecting the eastern and western coasts of the US.

        • Security

          • OpenWrt and SELinux

            SELinux is a security mechanism with a lot of ability to restrict user-space compromises in various useful ways. It has also generally been considered a heavyweight option that is not suitable for more resource-restricted systems like wireless routers. Undeterred by this perception, some OpenWrt developers are adding SELinux as an option for protecting the distribution, which targets embedded devices.

            A mid-September blog post from Paul Spooren gives some of the background and status. In July, W. Michael Petullo picked up some older patches from Thomas Petazzoni. Petullo updated some of that work, including switching the tools from Python 2 to Python 3; he submitted the result as a pull request (PR) for OpenWrt. On August 30, that PR was merged; a related PR from Petazzoni adding some packages to support SELinux on the distribution was merged September 12.

            The SELinux feature adds a mandatory access control (MAC) mechanism to the Linux kernel. Discretionary access control (DAC) is typified by the Unix read-write-execute permissions for files based on user and group IDs. While users can make changes to DAC permissions (e.g. chmod 777 ~), MAC policies generally cannot be overridden at run time.

            The MAC policies used by SELinux allow administrators to specify which applications can have access to various objects in the system, primarily files and network resources. Instead of user-based permissions, these objects get assigned security contexts describing their scope. The policies then map which objects can access other objects that have specific contexts, thus they could allow a web server to only be able to access files under a certain directory, to only be able to bind to specific network port numbers, and to be unable to initiate outbound connections. In order to change those restrictions, the root user would need to install different policy at boot time or relabel objects to have contexts that allow them to be accessed. Absent a kernel compromise, services and other processes restricted in this way should not be able to reach outside of the places where their access is confined to.

            Security labels are the way that SELinux determines the context of a file object; that information is stored as an extended attribute on the files themselves. Because they live in the protected security extended attribute namespace, they cannot be changed by regular users. So the refpolicy package will label the files with their context as the image is being built.

          • Voting machines pose more problems in US elections than outside actors

            The US Department of Homeland Security issued a warning on Tuesday that Russia may try to “sow discord, distract, shape public sentiment, and undermine trust in Western democratic institutions” in the run-up to the presidential elections which are now four weeks away.

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • Survey finds 85% of smartphone users believe they’re being spied on by a mobile app

              A new survey by WhistleOut provides some numbers to back up a growing sentiment: That an app on your smartphone is spying on you right this second while you read this article. The latest numbers from the smartphone industry estimates that the average smartphone user has between 60 and 90 apps. Additionally, the average smartphone user spends 77% of their time on their three most favorite apps and 75% of downloaded apps sit unused. The app that is actually spying on the user could just as easily be a seldom used app as a well used app such as Facebook or Instagram. The survey also narrowed down on the reason that users feel such distrust for the apps on their phones. WhistleOut stated:

            • EU laws may not require general and indiscriminate data retention

              National governments in the EU are very keen for communication companies to store traffic and location data for all their users. They claim this is necessary to enable the authorities to fight terrorism and serious crime. Such information may be helpful in some cases, but it also entails a massive invasion of privacy for hundreds of millions of people. As a result, digital rights organizations have been fighting hard against general requirements to store this data for all EU users of the Internet. This has led to a series of important judgments from the EU’s top court, the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU), which lay down what exactly is permitted in the field of data retention.

            • Germany revisits influential [Internet] law as amendment raises privacy implications

              On October 1, a new law to regulate content posted on social media platforms took effect in Turkey, The Guardian reported. Turkish journalists already face censorship and arrest because of social media posts, CPJ has found, and the law offers just one more tool to censor news.

              Yet the legislation was not solely conceived in Ankara; it follows the example of one of the world’s leading democracies – Germany. Danish think tank Justitia has charted lawmakers citing Germany’s 2017 Network Enforcement Act as an example or copying its clauses into domestic legislation in Russia, Singapore, and Venezuela, among other countries.

    • Defence/Aggression

      • OPCW Syria whistleblower and ex-OPCW chief attacked by US, UK, France at UN
      • 19 Years After US Invasion, Afghanistan’s Civil War Rages Despite Peace Talks

        The United States invaded Afghanistan 19 years ago today, sparking the nation’s longest-running war that has cost tens of thousands of lives and the U.S. about $2 trillion. While the U.S. originally ousted the Taliban as part of a broader anti-terrorism campaign, the Taliban and other militants have waged a bloody and arguably successful insurgency for nearly two decades. Despite billions of dollars in U.S. aid, and years of state-building and counterterrorism operations obscured by mission drift and government disinformation, Afghans continue to suffer a bloody civil war even as the Taliban meet with the Western-backed government for historic peace talks in Qatar.

      • [Cr]acker-for-hire group leverages zero-days, disinformation in Middle East

        The group, named “Bahamut,” is responsible for dozens of malicious applications that have been available in the Google’s Play store and Apple’s iOS marketplace, according to the BlackBerry research. Researchers say they believe Bahamut has used these applications to track surveillance targets, which are primarily located in the Middle East and South Asia, according to the report, which does not name the group’s suspected origins.

        Bahamut’s targets could offer some clues about its clientele. Bahamut has targeted government entities in the United Arab Emirates, Pakistani military officials, Sikh separatists in India, Indian business executives, and Saudi Arabian diplomats, according to a Reuters investigation. The independent journalism outlet Bellingcat also examined Bahamut’s activities in 2017.

      • BAHAMUT Spies-for-Hire Linked to Extensive Nation-State Activity

        “BAHAMUT is behind a number of extremely targeted and elaborate phishing and credential-harvesting campaigns, hundreds of new Windows malware samples, use of zero-day exploits, anti-forensic/AV evasion tactics, and more,” said Eric Milam, vice president of research operations at BlackBerry, in a report issued on Wednesday.

        He added, “They rely on malware as a last resort, are highly adept at phishing, tend to aim for mobile phones of specific individuals as a way into an organization, show an exceptional attention to detail and above all are patient – they have been known to watch their targets and wait for a year or more in some cases.”

      • Turkey Rekindles the Armenian Genocide

        As it has done in other arenas where “extremists” are attacking moderates or Christians—from Syria to Libya to Nigeria—Turkey is spearheading another jihad, this time against Christian Armenia.

        Context: Fighting recently erupted in the region of Nagorno-Karabakh, which borders Armenia and Azerbaijan. Although it is ethnically Armenian, after the dissolution of the USSR, the territory was allotted to Muslim Azerbaijan. Since then, hostilities and skirmishes have erupted, though the current one, if not quenched—an Azerbaijani drone was shot down above the Armenian capital and Azerbaijan is threatening to bomb Armenia’s unsecure nuclear power plant—can have serious consequences, including internationally.

      • Prominent Norwegian Critic of Islam Found Dead With ‘Visible Damage’

        The organisation Stop Islamisation of Norway, of which the deceased was an active member, seeks to counter the proliferation of Islam, which it sees as a totalitarian ideology that violates the Norwegian Constitution and contradicts democratic and humanitarian values.

      • Pakistani police say gunmen kill minority Ahmadi professor

        Attacks on the country’s minorities, including Christians and Hindus, have increased since 2018, when the government of Prime Minister Imran Khan came into power, although Khan has repeatedly promised to safeguard their basic rights.

    • Transparency/Investigative Reporting

    • Environment

    • Finance

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • ‘This Is an Outrage—and It’s Also Illegal’: USPS Blocking Democratic Lawmakers From Inspecting Postal Facilities

        “Postal facilities are not Area 51,” said Rep. Bill Pascrell.

      • ‘Makes Me Puke’: Analysis Shows Trump Covid-19 Treatment Would Cost Regular Folks $100K

        “We paid for this with our taxes. He doesn’t even pay taxes.” 

      • Why I Don’t Wish Trump Well

        I consider myself a caring person who does not like to see suffering in others. That includes human suffering but also extends to other sentient beings and creatures that may or may not experience pain as we understand it. I cringe to see animals who have become roadkill victims, and I capture crickets and spiders in my home to put them outside rather than killing them. I even brake for rattlesnakes, or at least take measures to relocate ones I’ve found on my property instead of clubbing them to death with a shovel.

      • Could the Covid Outbreak Delay Barrett’s Confirmation?

        Sen. Mitch McConnell has delayed the convening of the full Senate until Oct. 19 because three Republican Senators have tested positive for the Covid-19 virus. But he is pushing ahead with Barrett’s confirmation hearing scheduled for Oct. 12.

      • Russia adds Belarusian opposition leader Svetlana Tikhanovskaya to its wanted list

        Belarusian opposition leader and former presidential candidate Svetlana Tikhanovskaya (Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya) has been added to the Russian Interior Ministry’s wanted list, RIA Novosti reports.

      • The Virus and Voting Will Not Suffice to Fell This Beast

        No Sympathy for the Devil

      • Britain is Once Again on the Ropes

        While US viewers somehow endured the “debate” between Trump and Biden– which I didn’t watch, though I noted afterwards that a student of mine from 30 years ago likened it to “torture porn”, of which I have no experience I hasten to add, and so my blood pressure meds most certainly wouldn’t have been up to coping with the “debate”–  various current events in the UK showed it to be in as poor a state as the country presided over by Trump.

      • Trump Is the Grotesque Id of the Ruling Elites. His Disease Is Theirs – and Ours

        This national soul-sickness may have begun with the wealthy and powerful, but it’s up to us to cure it—in ourselves, and in each other.

      • Receiving Powerful Drug Cocktail and Tweetstorming, Bizarre Trump Behavior Called ‘Especially Unhinged Today’

        “Don’t let the president’s hysterical tweets distract you from the fact that he is refusing to provide Covid relief to American families and businesses unless he gets re-elected.”

      • Head of State

        Check out all installments in the OppArt series.

      • This Is Your President on Drugs

        Anyone who feared that Donald Trump would become subdued after testing positive for Covid-19 could take comfort in the more than 60 tweets the president issued on Tuesday, his first full day at the White House after a four-day hospital stay. The tweets were frantic, angry, and often incoherent. They showed that Trump’s personality has certainly not been tamed by his health problems. In fact, he has become even more Trumpian than before. They also highlight the chaos that is engulfing the executive branch of government in the last month before the presidential election.

      • Confronting a Tyrant: Lessons From Chile

        Can you recognize this country?

      • Trump Brought a Whole New World of Corruption to Washington

        Donald Trump promised to “drain the swamp” of corruption in Washington, DC. Instead, he not only brought his own corruption and that of his family to the nation’s capital. He also opened the door of his administration to a whole slew of influence-peddlers, scam artists, and sleazy lobbyists.

      • In Florida, the Gutting of a Landmark Law Leaves Few Felons Likely to Vote

        Nearly two years after Florida voters approved a landmark constitutional amendment allowing felons to vote, state officials don’t know how many have registered. They also don’t know how many felons on the voter rolls owe court fees, fines or restitution that would disqualify them from voting under a subsequent state law that limited the amendment’s scope.

        Florida officials have not removed any felons from the rolls for owing fines or fees, and they’re unlikely to do so before Election Day, Secretary of State Laurel Lee said in an interview Monday. It’s unclear whether those whom the state fails to prune are entitled to vote after all — or may face prosecution if they do.

      • DOJ Frees Federal Prosecutors to Take Steps That Could Interfere With Elections, Weakening Long-standing Policy

        The Department of Justice has weakened its long-standing prohibition against interfering in elections, according to two department officials.

        Avoiding election interference is the overarching principle of DOJ policy on voting-related crimes. In place since at least 1980, the policy generally bars prosecutors not only from making any announcement about ongoing investigations close to an election but also from taking public steps — such as an arrest or a raid — before a vote is finalized because the publicity could tip the balance of a race.

      • How You Can Stop America’s Slide Toward Tyranny

        5) If you’re healthy, and feel safe doing so, consider volunteering to be a poll worker. Being a poll worker will help mitigate long lines and keep the in-person voting process running smoothly.This is our chance to change our nation’s terrifying course. We can deliver a resounding defeat to Trump and every single one of his enablers, and stop our slide toward tyranny. But it’s going to take each and every one of us. 

      • Government wants jail time for Sharia imams

        Late last month, an imam in Odense hit the front pages after being reported to the police for producing a Sharia Law divorce contract dictating that a woman would lose her parental rights if she didn’t fulfill a list of unreasonable requirements.

        Now, the government is aiming to crack down on the practice by seeking prison time for up to three years for imams who formulate such documents.

      • Congress just finished its Big Tech antitrust report — now it’s time to rewrite the laws

        Lawmakers are charged with the arduous task of rewriting the U.S. antitrust laws — something that hasn’t been done in earnest in decades. The country’s two major antitrust statutes, the Sherman Act (monopoly law) and the Clayton Act (merger law) were passed in 1890 and 1914, respectively. The Federal Trade Commission Act, which established the FTC and gave it powers to regulate competition, was also passed in 1914.

      • Facebook says it will remove Pages and Groups representing QAnon

        “Starting today, we will remove any Facebook Pages, Groups and Instagram accounts representing QAnon, even if they contain no violent content,” Facebook said. “This is an update from the initial policy in August that removed Pages, Groups and Instagram accounts associated with QAnon when they discussed potential violence while imposing a series of restrictions to limit the reach of other Pages, Groups and Instagram accounts associated with the movement. Pages, Groups and Instagram accounts that represent an identified Militarized Social Movement are already prohibited. And we will continue to disable the profiles of admins who manage Pages and Groups removed for violating this policy, as we began doing in August.”

      • Facebook says it will block political ads after polls close on Election Day

        Details: Facebook says the goal of the new policy is to reduce opportunities for public confusion about results or messages that misinform the public about election outcomes.

      • Facebook to Ban Political Ads After Polls Close on Nov. 3, ‘Just in Time to Have No Impact Whatsoever’

        Critics noted that the social media giant also recently announced an algorithm change that could “make the site more toxic and less usable while endangering democracy and human rights.”

      • Facebook extends freeze on US political ads until after election

        Facebook said it’s readied new safeguards for the 2020 US elections that have it better prepared to deal with candidates who prematurely declare victory or contest official results and the possibility of voter intimidation by alleged — and potentially armed — “poll watchers”.

      • Facebook Will Ban Political Ads After Polls Close, Plans to Delete ‘Militarized’ Calls for Poll-Watching

        Among other steps: Facebook said it will remove posts from anyone to engage in poll watching “when those calls use militarized language or suggest that the goal is to intimidate, exert control, or display power over election officials or voters,” Guy Rosen, Facebook’s VP of integrity, wrote in a blog post Wednesday.

      • Facebook releases report on fight against disinformation in run-up to Taiwan elections

        Facebook published a report Tuesday (Oct. 6) on its role in debunking disinformation during the 2020 presidential election in Taiwan, the first report of its kind and one that serves to provide insights into how democratic institutions are evolving.

        According to the report, Facebook teamed up with government agencies and civic groups to safeguard electoral integrity for the presidential and legislative elections on Jan. 11. The effort mobilized around 40 internal teams from the social media giant.

        In collaboration with Taiwan FactCheck Center, Facebook held an event between Dec. 18 and Jan. 15 about ways to improve media literacy, which reached 7.3 million users in Taiwan. The company also took action to drastically cut the reach of posts deemed to contain false information by 80 percent, said CNA.

      • Facebook to Halt all Political Advertisements After Polls Close Nov. 3

        acebook said it’s readied new safeguards for the 2020 U.S. elections that have it better prepared to deal with candidates who prematurely declare victory or contest official results and the possibility of voter intimidation by alleged — and potentially armed — “poll watchers.”

        In the former case, Facebook plans to halt all political advertisements once polls close on Nov. 3, an extension of an earlier restriction on new political ads in the week leading up to Election Day. The ban will likely last for a week, though Facebook says it could run longer if necessary. And it plans to label posts that cast doubt on election results with links to official information.

      • Facebook bans ‘militarized’ calls for poll watching during election

        Monika Bickert, Facebook’s vice president of content policy, said the company would not apply the restrictions on militarized language retroactively. “When we apply our policies, we generally apply them going forward,” she said on a conference call with reporters.

      • Facebook Bans Political Ads After End of Voting on Election Day

        The social media company announced a handful of updates Wednesday to prepare for the possibility that final results won’t be known immediately on Nov. 3. The suspension of political ads is similar to a plan Google already adopted in an effort to keep candidates and their campaigns from spreading misleading or confusing messages to voters. Facebook doesn’t fact-check political ads.

      • Facebook to slap labels on posts if candidates prematurely declare victory

        Facebook will add labels to posts from candidates who prematurely declare victory in the November elections, the social media platform announced Wednesday.

        If a candidate or party claims to have won before the race is called by major news outlets, users will be shown a notification explaining that no winner has been determined and that votes are still being counted. The same information will be shown at the top of a user’s news feed.

        In the event of a candidate or party contesting the results declared by news outlets, a label will be added showing the winner of the race according to the media.

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • Donald Trump Now Wants To Repeal Section 230, Which Will Actually Make The Stuff He Complains About Worse

        We’ve already discussed how the President has been urging Congress to make “complaining about the internet” a key election issue for Republicans. This is why Congress has introduced 17 different bills about Section 230 this year, combined with two separate proposals from the White House itself. But apparently, even that is not enough for our completely clueless President. On Tuesday after facing a bit more mild moderation concerning dangerous lies about COVID that he had posted, he announced that he wanted to “repeal” 230 entirely.

      • California League of Cities Should Reject Misguided Section 230 Resolution

        The past few months have seen plenty of attempts to undermine Section 230, the law that makes a free Internet possible. But now we’re seeing one from a surprising place: the California League of Cities.

        To be clear, the League of Cities, an association of city officials from around the state, doesn’t have the power to change Section 230 or any other federal law. But if Congress were to actually follow their lead, the policies that the League is considering approving would be disastrous for the freedom of California residents.

      • Teacher struck off for ‘disseminating pro-independence messages’ barred from all Hong Kong campuses

        The Alliance Primary School teacher was struck off in late September, the government announced on Monday, for “serious professional misconduct,” meaning that he will be barred from teaching for life.

      • The GOP’s Cries of ‘Censorship’ Are Hurting Democracy

        Amid these floods of election lies, Senator Lindsey Graham introduced a bill on September 21 titled the Online Content Policy Modernization Act. The purpose: modifying the liability shields given to internet sites for content they host. Numerous organizations—from the Center for Democracy & Technology to Access Now to the Anti-Defamation League—signed a letter strongly opposing the legislation. “This bill would deter platforms from fact checking misleading information about voting and would interfere with social media services’ ability to combat the spread of mis- and disinformation on their sites,” they wrote.

        Online content moderation is an incredibly complex issue, particularly so when performed by global companies. But many attacks on Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act—which enables internet platforms to moderate speech without, generally speaking, fear of liability, with some exceptions—are fundamentally bad-faith and antidemocratic, propelled not by genuine attempts to address real policy questions but a desire to suppress disliked political speech. These proposals are harmful to democracy.

      • Pakistan court acquits Christian convict sentenced to death in blasphemy case

        A Pakistani court on Tuesday acquitted a Christian man who was sentenced to death on blasphemy charges six years ago.

        Sawan Masih was sentenced to death by a trial court in Lahore for allegedly insulting the Prophet during a conversation with a Muslim friend in Joseph Christian colony in March 2014.

        He had filed an appeal against his death sentence.

      • Indonesian man faces 6 years in prison for saying mosque blared music in TikTok video

        In a follow up video, Kenneth admitted that the mosque did not actually play music through a speaker and that he added the audio track himself. He fended off accusations of racism and blasphemy from other TikTok users, maintaining that he merely wanted to “educate” his audience that playing music through a mosque is inappropriate.

        Police yesterday announced Kenneth’s arrest for blasphemy under the Information and Electronic Transactions Act (UU ITE), which could see him sentenced to six years in prison if found guilty.

      • Blasphemy convictions spark Nigerian debate over sharia law

        Sharia, or Islamic religious law, is applied in 12 of Nigeria’s 36 states, raising questions about the compatibility of two legal systems where sharia courts operate alongside secular ones.

        Kola Alapinni, a lawyer representing both Sharif and Farouq, told Reuters that appeals against the convictions had been lodged at the Kano state high court, although no dates for the hearings had yet been set.

      • Netizens Call Out Rihanna for Using Islamic Hadith in Song for her Fenty Show

        The song is called ‘Doom’ and was created by a London-based producer named Coucou Chloe more than two years ago. The song, which is at the center of the controversy, has Islamic vocal samples from Hadith which apparently revolves around the end of times and the judgment day.

    • Freedom of Information/Freedom of the Press

      • The Selective Prosecution of Julian Assange

        As the extradition hearing for Wikileaks Editor-in-Chief Julian Assange unfolds, it is increasingly clear that the prosecution of Assange fits into a pattern of governments selectively enforcing laws in order to punish those who provoke their ire. As we see in Assange’s case and in many others before this, computer crime laws are especially ripe for this form of politicization.

        The key evidence in the U.S. government’s cybercrime conspiracy allegations against Assange is a brief conversation between Julian Assange and Chelsea Manning in which the possibility of cracking a password is discussed, Manning allegedly shares a snippet of that password with Assange, and Assange apparently attempts, but fails, to crack it.  While breaking into computers and cracking passwords in many contexts is illegal under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, few prosecutors would ever bother to bring a case for such an inconsequential activity as a failed attempt to reverse a hash. But the government has doggedly pursued charges against Assange for 10 years, perhaps because they fear that prosecuting Assange for publishing leaked documents is protected by the First Amendment and is a case they are likely to lose.  

      • ‘Learn to read’: Russian state news agency spreads false information about the Golunov case

        On Wednesday, October 7, the Russian state news agency TASS reported that in June 2019, Federal Security Service (FSB) experts allegedly found traces of amphetamines in Meduza correspondent Ivan Golunov’s blood samples. TASS cited an unnamed source, “familiar with the materials of the case.”

      • Shadowproof Recognized For Exceptional Coverage Of Julian Assange’s Extradition Trial

        Shadowproof managing editor Kevin Gosztola woke up every morning for four weeks in September to report on WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange’s extradition trial at the Old Bailey Criminal Courthouse in London.

        Kevin shared live updates during court, produced end-of-day video reports, and he wrote articles each day for The Dissenter newsletter (and Shadowproof).

      • Uttar Pradesh police arrest journalist on his way to cover Hathras gang rape case

        The Committee to Protect Journalists today called on the government of the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh to immediately release journalist Siddique Kappan and drop any investigation into him. Kappan was arrested yesterday while traveling from the capital Delhi to Hathras district in Uttar Pradesh to report on a story, according to The Hindu and NDTV.

      • Turkey seizes journalist Can Dundar’s assets, declares him a fugitive

        The former editor of Cumhuriyet newspaper has been stripped of his assets and declared a fugitive in Turkey. He fled to Germany amid the Turkish crackdown on journalists and the public sector after a failed [sic] coup.

      • Foreign correspondents don’t need to be in Beijing to report on China

        For the first time since 1973, the Australian media has no foreign correspondents in China—a consequence of the Chinese government’s decision to drown out all critical voices, foreign or domestic. Allowing the deterioration of media freedom in China to translate into a poorer understanding of Chinese politics is a goal of the Chinese Communist Party under Xi Jinping. But, for journalists and media organisations, this remains an entirely avoidable outcome.

      • ‘Kurdish women journalists won’t hesitate seeking truth’

        The Mesopotamia Women Journalists Platform issued a written statement on the occasion of Kurdish Women Journalists Day.

      • RSF, Others Urge Montenegrin Judges To Acquit Journalist In Retrial

        Martinovic, who has reported widely on organized crime with both local and foreign outlets, has denied the accusations against him and said he believes they were in retaliation for his reporting.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • Not Objectively Reasonable: MLK’s Long Arc of the Moral Universe At Work
      • US Labor Unions File UN Complaint Accusing Trump Administration of “Outrageous” Violations of Workers’ Rights Amid Pandemic

        Covid-19 “has demonstrated that not only is the U.S. violating workers’ rights, but those violations are resulting in people dying.” 

      • Activists Sue San Francisco for Wide-Ranging Surveillance of Black-Led Protests Against Police Violence

        San Francisco—Local activists sued San Francisco today over the city police department’s illegal use of a network of more than 400 non-city surveillance cameras to spy on them and thousands of others who protested as part of the Black-led movement against police violence.The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) and the ACLU of Northern California represent Hope Williams, Nathan Sheard, and Nestor Reyes, Black and Latinx activists who participated in and organized numerous protests that crisscrossed San Francisco, following the police killing of George Floyd.During the first week of mass demonstrations in late May and early June, the San Francisco Police Department (SFPD), in defiance of a city ordinance, tapped into a sprawling camera network run by a business district to conduct live mass surveillance without first going through a legally required public process and obtaining permission from the San Francisco Board of Supervisors.“San Francisco police have a long and troubling history of targeting Black organizers going back to the 1960s,” said EFF Staff Attorney Saira Hussain. “This new surveillance of Black Lives Matter protesters is exactly the kind of harm that the San Francisco supervisors were trying to prevent when they passed a critical surveillance technology ordinance last year. And still, with all eyes watching, SFPD brazenly decided to break the law.”“In a democracy, people should be able to freely protest without fearing that police are spying and lying in wait,” said Matt Cagle, Technology and Civil Liberties Attorney at the ACLU of Northern California. “Illegal, dragnet surveillance of protests is completely at odds with the First Amendment and should never be allowed. That the SFPD flouted the law to spy on activists protesting the abuse and killing of Black people by the police is simply indefensible.”“Along with thousands of people in San Francisco, I took to the streets to protest police violence and racism and affirm that Black lives matter,” said Hope Williams, the lead plaintiff in this lawsuit and a protest organizer. “It is an affront to our movement for equity and justice that the SFPD responded by secretly spying on us. We have the right to organize, speak out, and march without fear of police surveillance.”Records obtained and released by EFF in July show SFPD received a real-time remote link to more than 400 surveillance cameras. The vast camera network is operated by the Union Square Business Improvement District (USBID), a non-city entity. These networked cameras are high definition, allow remote zoom and focus capabilities, and are linked to a software system that can automatically analyze content, including distinguishing between when a car or a person passes within the frame.The lawsuit calls on a court to order San Francisco to enforce the Surveillance Technology Ordinance and bring the SFPD back under the law. San Francisco’s Surveillance Technology Ordinance was enacted in 2019 following a near unanimous vote of the Board of Supervisors.The plaintiffs, all of whom participated in protests against police violence and racism in May and June of 2020, are:

        For the complaint:https://www.eff.org/document/williams-v-san-francisco-complaintLink to video statement of attorneys and client:https://youtu.be/8gYd9oZzdHgCase pages: EFF case pageACLU case pageFor more on police spying tech:

      • No Lives Matter

        No Lives Matter would be a catalyst for true consciousness leading all to reflect on their place in the system, as an exploited class of diverse peoples, the 99% if you will.

      • Police raid offices of Moscow’s second-biggest mortuary amid corporate feud

        The Moscow police raided the local office of the “Ritual Service” mortuary on October 6 and seized several documents, the firm’s co-owner, Oleg Shelyagov, told the news agency RBC on Wednesday. The officers were from the Moscow Northern Administrative District’s Economic Security and Anti-Corruption Department, Shelyagov says.

      • If the President Had HIV He Could Be in Prison

        Trump’s adopted state of Florida has half a dozen HIV criminalization laws on the books, under which 266 people have been convicted.

      • If the President had HIV, He Could be in Prison

        Could Donald Trump be charged with a crime for knowingly exposing others to an infectious disease?

      • The Man Who Would Be President: Mike Pence, Corporate Theocrat

        If President Trump dies from the coronavirus that has killed more than 200,000 Americans largely due to his deliberate negligence, the man replacing him will be no less dangerous. While Mike Pence has eluded tough media scrutiny — in part because he exhibits such a low-key style in contrast to Trump — the pair has been a good fit for an administration that exemplifies the partnership of religious fundamentalism and corporate power.

      • How Do You Flip Rural Trump Voters? Talk to Them.

        In 2016, establishment Democrats all but ignored rural communities. Groups like People’s Action are changing that, one conversation at a time.

      • Families Of Prisoners Killed In 1988 Mass Executions Demand Answers

        Responding to the activists’ statement in Mousavi’s defense, hundreds of the relatives of the 1988 massacre’s victims have stepped forward, demanding justice. In a statement issued on Sunday, October 4, they explicitly called for Mousavi and other figures linked to the Islamic establishment to disclose what they know about the tragedy.

      • Greensboro Massacre: City Apologizes 41 Years After Cops Allowed Klan, Nazis to Kill 5 Antiracists

        Nearly 41 years after Ku Klux Klansmen and American Nazis shot dead five antiracist activists in the town of Greensboro, North Carolina, the City Council there has passed a resolution apologizing for the attack and the police department’s complicity in the killings. We speak with two survivors of the 1979 attack, Reverend Nelson Johnson and Joyce Hobson Johnson, who say the city’s apology acknowledges “the police knew and chose to do nothing. In fact, they facilitated what we name now as a North American death squad.”

      • Let Her Speak: How The Victorian Government Is Still Silencing Survivors
      • Head of Tibetan exile government still seeks independence on anniversary of annexation

        The head of the Tibetan government in exile, Lobsang Sangay, told DW on Wednesday that on the 70th anniversary of the Chinese annexation of Tibet, he was still fighting for autonomy.

        “It is difficult because you are in exile and whatever happens around the world affects you, including the American presidential election or change in prime ministership of Japan, or any country in Europe,” he said. “But you do the best you can to impact the world. And so far, for the last 60 years, we are still standing on our feet and we are still pursuing non-violence as our principle and genuine autonomy as our goal. So we are still here.”

      • ‘Infidel’: At Last, a Film That Deals Realistically with Islamic Terrorism

        Infidel instead opts to be more realistic, recalling actual events that seldom gain Hollywood’s notice, such as the 1987 kidnapping of journalist Charles Glass by Hizballah in Lebanon. Infidel unflinchingly portrays the gleeful brutality and inhumanity of Rawlins’ captors, as well as his own struggles to maintain his Christian faith amid torture and isolation. Amid all this, the film’s realism is thoroughgoing: once the movie’s perspective was established, it was refreshing to see Caviezel portray Rawlins as alternately angry, afraid, and confused, rather than as a plaster saint, above the fray and singing hymns even as he is being beaten and verbally abused.

      • Like many US workers, Trump staff has little recourse if asked to work alongside sick colleagues

        The labor situation in the White House is not unique, as experts explained to Salon: many workers around the country who don’t have the option of working from home are put in similar situations every day, where they may be expected to show up to work despite having sick colleagues or bosses, and there is little they can do about it. In June, for example, Tesla workers claimed they were fired after choosing to stay home to avoid getting COVID-19, even though they say they had initially been given permission to do so.

      • [Old] Ham Sandwich Nation: Due Process When Everything Is A Crime

        Prosecutorial discretion poses an increasing threat to justice. The threat has in fact grown more severe to the point of becoming a due process issue. Two recent events have brought more attention to this problem. One involves the decision not to charge NBC anchor David Gregory with violating gun laws. In Washington D.C., brandishing a thirty-round magazine is illegal and can result in a yearlong sentence. Nonetheless, the prosecutor refused to charge Gregory despite stating that the on-air violation was clear.1 The other event involves the government’s rather enthusiastic efforts to prosecute Reddit founder Aaron Swartz for downloading academic journal articles from a closed database. Authorities prosecuted Swartz so vigorously that he committed suicide in the face of a potential fifty-year sentence.2

        Both cases have aroused criticism. In Swartz’s case, a congresswoman has even proposed legislation designed to ensure that violating a website’s terms cannot be prosecuted as a crime.3 But the problem is much broader. Given the vast web of legislation and regulation that exists today, virtually any American bears the risk of being targeted for prosecution.

      • The Cost of Thriving

        In 1985, the COTI stood at 303—the median male worker needed thirty weeks of income to afford a house, a car, health care, and education. By 2018, the COTI had increased to 53—a full-time job was insufficient to afford these items, let alone the others that a family needs. A generation ago, the worker could be confident in his ability to provide his family not only with the basics of food, clothing, and shelter, but also with the middle-class essentials of a house, a car, health care, and education. Now he cannot. Public programs may provide those things for him, a second earner may work as well, or his family may do without, while his television may be larger than ever. The implications of each are surely worth pondering. But the fact that he can no longer provide middle-class security to a family is an unavoidable economic reality of the modern era.

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

      • America’s internet wasn’t prepared for online school

        Part of the problem for rural areas is income. Just over half of households with annual incomes under $30,000 use broadband [Internet], according to Pew Research Center. Poverty rates are much higher in non-metro areas than they are in metro areas across the US — and the largest gap, by far, is in the South. And the COVID-19 pandemic, which demolished 113 straight months of job growth, has overwhelmingly impacted low-income minority communities.

    • Digital Restrictions (DRM)

      • Netflix Triples London Office Space With New Headquarters

        Netflix, which has 269 employees in the U.K., currently rents about 30,000 square feet of space in two nearby buildings, one of which will be retained, one of the people said. The changes will give the company a total of about 100,000 square feet of office space in the capital.

    • Monopolies

Coming Soon: Microsoft Depositions’ Transcripts

Posted in Antitrust, Bill Gates, Microsoft at 3:29 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“This anti-trust thing will blow over. We haven’t changed our business practices at all.”

Bill Gates

Something intentionally missing here

Summary: Our plan to release Microsoft deposition transcripts (antitrust, monopoly abuse) explained in advance

FOUR more deposition videos will be published in Techrights over the next four days. Then, in four separate parts, we’ll start releasing deposition transcripts, which Techrights can then use to explain the present war on GNU/Linux and Free software. Gates himself has already admitted nothing changed (same business practices persist). Both before and after those excruciating interrogations Gates viewed himself as fighting a holy war or "Jihad" against his competitors. He’s debased if not deranged. After the trials Gates supported Bush, who scuttled the whole thing and never properly punished Microsoft. Right now Republican politicians pretend that Microsoft is no problem at all, only Apple, Amazon, Google and Facebook are a problem. Donald Trump works like an employee or lobbyists of Microsoft. Charms of a fake charity that bribes politicians and media simultaneously?

“Right now Republican politicians pretend that Microsoft is no problem at all, only Apple, Amazon, Google and Facebook are a problem.”At Techrights we need to convert these PDFs into text (in bulk) somehow, though accuracy of the OCR then becomes a subject of concern. Well, based on the many PDFs (almost a hundred right there), we’re talking about thousands of pages of deposition transcripts, so it’s infeasible for us. Some are prepared already (solid transcriptions), at least the important ones. We just try to work out the presentation (the best way to preserve these and make them easily accessible).

Remember that Bill Gates was already arrested in the past (apparently several times, based on old records). He’s still dodging questions (or questioning) about his relationship with child traffickers. COVID-19 helps him portray himself, a famous criminal, as the man who is saving the world. Many people are rightly sceptical.

COVID-19 gave us valuable time to archive very important past events (such as IBM’s long and shameful history as well as Microsoft antitrust facts), salvaging it all before the past rots away — on the Internet at least — and before it’s mostly irretrievable/inaccessible to the general public (necessitating formal request for documents, e.g. FOIA, PACER or similar). Our voyage for truth carries on. We rarely make erroneous statements here.

Reminder: Bill Gates Called for “Jihad” (His Word) Both Before and After Being Grilled for Crimes

Posted in Antitrust, Bill Gates, GNU/Linux, Microsoft at 2:39 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Earlier today: Bill Gates Deposition: Gates Keeps Referring to His Attacks on Competitors (Linux Included) as “Jihad” and Still Lies About Illegal Contracts

Bill Gates Jihad

Bill Gates Jihad meme
Source document: Exhibit px07068 [PDF] (the “Jihad” against Linux)

Summary: Bill Gates never really changed; he merely created a reputation-laundering scam to distract from his appalling behaviour (which later extended to reputation-laundering work on behalf of the biggest child traffickers)

IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, October 07, 2020

Posted in IRC Logs at 2:15 am by Needs Sunlight

GNOME Gedit

GNOME Gedit

#techrights log

#boycottnovell log

GNOME Gedit

GNOME Gedit

#boycottnovell-social log

#techbytes log

Enter the IRC channels now

This Did Not Age Well: UPC to Start… 5 Years Ago

Posted in Deception, Europe, Patents at 2:00 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Wouter Pors on UPC

Summary: “The system is going to go live probably early 2015, but companies need to prepare [read: pay me] right now,” says Wouter Pors (Bird & Bird, an aggressive/thug firm) about the dead UP/UPC, which he participated in crafting and lobbying for (an abuse of legislative processes/law-making)

“Partner Wouter Pors explains what the Unified Patent Court is and how businesses can prepare for its launch,” said Bird & Bird 6 years ago (that’s around 1:46-1:53 above). There are many more videos just like this one (or just as laughable) and these are always filled with conceited lawyers, equipped with false (also totally baseless) predictions and an arrogant sense of certainty it would actually start, in spite of severe constitutional issues.

“They’re basically voting on a dud, having already disgraced the Bundestag when voting in the small hours of the morning with barely anyone present.”The “UPC [Agreement] enters the Bundestag [today],” Benjamin Henrion told us, with “vote by the end of the month with the vote of the Budget, cause they need to be present for 2/3 majority…”

Wouter PorsThis overlooks so many other issues. They’re basically voting on a dud, having already disgraced the Bundestag when voting in the small hours of the morning with barely anyone present. Is the Bundestag so corrupt that even Donald Trump can mock it? Is the ministry of injustice together with the Bundestag capable of doing something which it very well knows to be unconstitutional, as per the FCC?

One final question: don’t German officials understand that the longer they participate in Team UPC’s lobbying effort, the more long-term damage will be done (to their credibility and the nation’s reputation)?

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