01.07.21

Links 7/1/2021: Elive 3.8.18 Beta, OpenZFS 2.0.1, Linux and KDE Stable/Bugfix Releases, and Many Thoughts on US Sedition

Posted in News Roundup at 2:47 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Aha! This Project is Working to Bring Linux to Apple’s ARM-based M1 MacBooks

      community project that aims to port Linux to Apple Silicon Macs, starting with the 2020 M1 Mac Mini, MacBook Air, and MacBook Pro.

    • LWN’s 2020 Retrospective

      The first prediction had to do with the Python project finding its path in a post-Guido world. In truth, founder Guido van Rossum has not been as absent as one might have thought, and he continues to have a strong say in the development direction of the language. His championing of the PEP 622 pattern-matching mechanism shows that he still has strong ideas about where the language should go. Python governance may be happening without Guido, but the project’s leaders still listen to him.

      The direction of the GNU Project was the subject of another prediction that did not really pan out as expected. As far as the public can see, at least, the discussion about the future of the GNU project appears to have faded away. Richard Stallman remains in charge (as expected), but the project gives every indication of being mostly on autopilot.

      The prediction about increasing retirements in the community explicitly said that little might happen in 2020, and that appears to be the case. If anything, things went the other way, with Van Rossum ending his retirement to take a new job in the industry.

      Did the kernel workflow effort begin to bear fruit, as predicted? That work has continued, and the community has gained some new infrastructure for dealing with patches outside of email. The ripest fruit at this point, certainly, is the b4 tool, which continually gains capabilities and has become an increasingly indispensable part of many developers’ workflow. One wonders how we did without it, but it only showed up (under a different name) in January.

      Your editor predicted that the next LTS kernel would be 5.9, released on November 1. There were some weasel words about how, if there were fewer ten-week cycles, that kernel would actually be 5.10, released in December. And, in fact, kernel releases got a little faster in 2020, 5.9 was released on October 11, and the long-term-support release for 2020 will be 5.10, which came out on December 13. So this prediction is a win — as long as the fine print is taken into account.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • FLOSS Weekly 611: The FLOSS Ecosystem – Allison Randal, FLOSS Landscape

        Nobody sees or understands the big FLOSS story better than Allison Randal, a veteran of .ORGs for Perl, Python, Parrot, Openstack, Software Freedom, Open Usage, and FLOSS; .COMs that include HP, Canonical, SUSE and O’Reilly; plus countless events for all those entities, among many more. Allison joins Doc Searls and Jonathan Bennett for an exciting and knowledge-packed hour exploring what she calls the “three legs of the FLOSS stool”: developers, companies and foundations. Putting into perspective everything from Red Hat dropping CentOS to the migration of one foundation from OpenStack to Open Infrastructure. For a view across the FLOSS landscape, you can’t beat the hour you’ll enjoy here.

      • Hsetroot: A Better Minimal Wallpaper Setter?

        Recently I looked at xwallpaper a super minimal Xorg wallpaper setter but some people suggested that I also go and check out hsetroot which is basically xsetroot with some nice additions to it.

      • Going Linux #401 · Listener Feedback

        From creepy behavior online to media server updates to suggestions on mobile phones on Linux, file permissions, Pulse Audio, PDFs, and computer hardware designed for Linux, we have it all in this first episode of 2021!

      • How Fedora WON 2020 for Desktop Linux – 4 Reasons

        Fedora 33 became a well-loved release for the Fedora Project last year? Why is that? Let’s discuss.

      • The Linux Link Tech Show Episode 888

        mesh network router, air fryers, networking

      • BSDNow 384: In memoriam

        Allen K. Briggs Memorial Scholarship, Toward an automated tracking of OpenBSD ports contributions, Trying OpenZFS 2 on FreeBSD 12.2-RELEASE, OpenBSD on TECLAST F7 Plus, Multi-volume support in HAMMER2, and more.

      • Bad Voltage 3×20: According To The Prophecy

        Stuart Langridge, Jono Bacon, and Jeremy Garcia present Bad Voltage, in which we present our predictions for 2021!

    • Kernel Space

      • Linux 5.11 dominated by descriptors for new AMD silicon

        Linux overlord Linus Torvalds has urged developers to “crawl out from under all the xmas wrapping paper piles and go test” after releasing release candidate two of version 5.11 of the Linux kernel.”

        You read that right: Torvalds is already up to rc2, having released rc1 on December 27th, 2020.

        On that not-very-busy-for-most-people day Torvalds noted that far and away the biggest piece of new code in version 5.11 was a “huge dump of AMD GPU descriptor header files, which completely dwarfs all the ‘real’ changes here.”

      • Linux 5.10.5
        I'm announcing the release of the 5.10.5 kernel.
        
        All users of the 5.10 kernel series must upgrade.
        
        The updated 5.10.y git tree can be found at:
        	git://git.kernel.org/pub/scm/linux/kernel/git/stable/linux-stable.git linux-5.10.y
        and can be browsed at the normal kernel.org git web browser:
        
        https://git.kernel.org/?p=linux/kernel/git/stable/linux-s...
        
        thanks,
        
        greg k-h
        
      • Linux 5.10.5 Released – It Disables FBCON Accelerated Scrolling

        Linux 5.10.5 LTS is out today with at least one rather interesting addition.

        Linux 5.10.5 picks up the patch talked about back in October to drop accelerated scrolling from the Linux frame-buffer console (FBCON) since it’s riddled with bugs and not widely used.

        Bugs continue to be discovered within the FBCON code, particularly around the accelerated scrolling. Thus the code is being removed since it’s not widely used and due to these code issues.

      • Linux 5.4.87
      • Linux 4.19.165
      • 5.11 Merge window, part 1

        When Linus Torvalds released the 5.10 kernel, he noted that the 5.11 merge window would run up against the holidays. He indicated strongly that maintainers should send him pull requests early as a result. Maintainers appear to have listened; over 10,000 non-merge changesets were pulled into the mainline in the first three days of the 5.11 merge window. Read on for a summary of the most significant changes in that flood of patches.

      • Managing multifunction devices with the auxiliary bus

        Device drivers usually live within a single kernel subsystem. Sometimes, however, developers need to handle functionalities outside of this model. Consider, for example, a network interface card (NIC) exposing both Ethernet and RDMA functionalities. There is one hardware block, but two drivers for the two functions. Those drivers need to work within their respective subsystems, but they must also share access to the same hardware. There is no standard way in current kernels to connect those drivers together, so developers invent ad-hoc methods to handle the interaction between them. Recently, Dave Ertman posted a patch set introducing a new type of a bus, called the “auxiliary bus”, to address this problem.

      • OpenZFS 2.0.1 Released With Linux 5.10 Support, Many Fixes

        Released at the end of November was the much anticipated OpenZFS 2.0 open-source ZFS file-system implementation for Linux and FreeBSD systems. Today that has been succeeded by OpenZFS 2.0.1 with support for newer Linux kernels and many bug fixes.

        OpenZFS 2.0.0 was compatible with Linux kernels up through 5.9 while now OpenZFS 2.0.1 adds Linux 5.10 kernel support and early compatibility patches around the still in development Linux 5.11.

      • Intel’s IWD 1.11 Released For Faster WiFi Scanning – Phoronix

        The Intel-developed IWD Linux wireless daemon is out with its first feature release of 2021.

        IWD 1.11 as the new release issued on Wednesday isn’t a big update but comes with primary new feature: “intelligent scan of all [wireless] frequencies”, as noted in the 1.11 tag.

        Digging more into that, it basically should yield faster initial WiFi scanning times. The commit leading to this change is splitting DBus scans into three frequency scans.

      • Linux 5.10, Bootlin contributions – Bootlin’s blog

        Linux 5.10 was released a few weeks ago, and while 5.11-rc2 is already out, it’s still time to look at what Bootlin contributed to the 5.10 kernel. As usual, for a broad overview of the major changes in 5.10, we recommend reading the LWN articles: 5.10 merge window part 1, the rest of the 5.10 merge window, or the 5.10 KernelNewbies page.

      • Graphics Stack

        • Nvidia 460.32.03 Display Driver Adds Support for RTX A6000 GPUs, Vulkan Improvements

          For all supported platforms, the Nvidia 460.32.03 video driver adds support for NVIDIA RTX A6000 GPUs, introduces a new default disk cache location for the OpenGL/Vulkan Shader and changes its default size from 128MB to 1024MB, and changes the AllowEmptyInitialConfiguration option to “True” by default to avoid failures when launching the X server if no displays are connected.

          Moreover, Nvidia 460.32.03 better supports apps that transfer data between VDPAU video surfaces and system memory by improving the NVIDIA VDPAU implementation when using planar or semi-planar formats, and adds a new “NoInterlacedModes” token to the driver’s “ModeValidation” option to restrict the validation of interlaced modes.

        • NVIDIA getting geared up to support hardware accelerated XWayland

          Looks like 2021 really could properly be the year of Wayland on the Linux desktop. For plenty it already is but NVIDIA have been a sore spot and it looks like they’re moving forward now too.

          NVIDIA’s Erik Kurzinger has submitted a Merge Request to the xserver GitLab titled “Xwayland: Support hardware accelerated rendering with the proprietary NVIDIA driver”, with the two patches included “intended to accompany upcoming support in the proprietary NVIDIA driver for hardware accelerated GL and Vulkan rendering with Xwayland”. Kurzinger continues to mention that once a driver is out with the needed hooks, this code should “just start working”.

          The patches are being sent out to be considered, so that they can get some feedback and see if there’s any substantial concerns about their approach to it.

        • NVIDIA Prepares XWayland OpenGL/Vulkan Acceleration Support – Phoronix

          NVIDIA’s Wayland support is finally coming together albeit long overdue with DMA-BUF passing support and now patches pending against XWayland for supporting OpenGL and Vulkan hardware acceleration with their proprietary driver.

          Pending patches to the X.Org Server’s XWayland code paired with a yet-to-be-released proprietary driver update finally allow for hardware accelerated rendering with XWayland.

        • RadeonSI Gallium3D Adds Radeon GPU Profiler Support – Phoronix

          Surprisingly it has taken until 2021 but the RadeonSI Gallium3D OpenGL driver now supports using the company’s own Radeon GPU Profiler.

          The Radeon GPU Profiler (RGP) is a low-level optimization tool for Windows and Linux geared for OpenCL / OpenGL / Vulkan / Direct3D tracing and performance profiling on Radeon GPUs.

          Radeon GPU Profiler has obviously been geared for their proprietary/official (closed-source) graphics driver components on both Windows and Linux. Meanwhile last year Mesa’s RADV Vulkan driver began adding Radeon GPU Profiler support. That RADV RGP support has been expanded upon with time.

        • Freedreno In Mesa 21.0 Flips On OpenGL 3.3 Support – Phoronix

          It was just at the end of December that the Mesa 21.0 development code enabled OpenGL 3.2 support for Freedreno, the open-source Gallium3D driver for Qualcomm Adreno graphics hardware. Now in time for Mesa 21.0 still, OpenGL 3.3 support has been achieved.

          OpenGL 3.3 contexts (and GLSL 330) in turn is supported with the newest development code this week per this commit.

        • AMD’s “AMDVLK” Vulkan Driver Making It Easier To Switch To RADV Driver – Phoronix

          AMD has begun staging their new open-source driver code ahead of the next AMDVLK driver release that will likely occur this week or next. With this latest AMDVLK code dump, there is easy run-time switching support between the AMDVLK and RADV Vulkan drivers.

          Already it’s quite easy switching between multiple Vulkan drivers thanks to the common Vulkan loader and ICD handling, but with the newest AMDVLK driver it’s made even easier. AMD has created a Vulkan layer that makes it as easy as setting an environment variable for indicating whether you want to use their AMDVLK driver or the open-source, “community” Mesa RADV Vulkan driver.

    • Benchmarks

      • A Look At The CPU Security Mitigation Costs Three Years After Spectre/Meltdown

        With this week marking three years since Spectre and Meltdown were made public in ushering in a wave of CPU security disclosures that followed and mitigations that often resulted in measurable performance hits, here is a look at how the performance costs stand today with various new and older Intel CPUs as well as AMD processors too. This article is looking at the current performance costs under Linux with the default mitigations and then the run-time disabling of the relevant mitigations for each of the processors under test while using an up-to-date Ubuntu 20.10 paired with the new Linux 5.10 LTS kernel.

    • Applications

      • The 15 Best Compression Tools for Linux System in 2021

        Data compression is a method or an algorithm that we can use to squeeze the volume of the data to make the size smaller. Data compression is helpful to store files on a drive and sending them over the internet. When you decompress the data, it uses the reverse algorithm to make the files as it was. Compression is essential for data analysis, data storing and data transferring. If we look at Gmail’s file attachment section, we can see that it doesn’t attach files more than a specific size. In that case, you can use the compression tools to make the file size smaller. There are plenty of free and open-source tools that can do the task of data compression in Linux.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • How to customize your sudo password prompt

        You can make that configuration change with a single quick command. When complete, anytime a user issues a command with sudo, they’ll be presented with that warning.

      • Geometric effects of certain system design choices

        Any one of these sketchy design decisions by itself might have worked out fine in isolation, but when they all interact with each other, you can end up with a category five technical debt storm.

        I hope you brought your waders.

      • Unix shell pipelines have two usage patterns

        I’ve seen a variety of recommendations for safer shell scripting that use Bash and set its ‘pipefail’ option (for example, this one from 2015). This is a good recommendation in one sense, but it exposes a conflict; this option works great for one usage pattern for pipes, and potentially terribly for another one.

      • Simple.css – A Classless CSS Framework For Everyone

        If you didn’t know already I love playing around with web technologies. I have a number of projects that I manage along with this site. It’s a fun hobby that makes me happy.

        However, what doesn’t make me happy are the extremely convoluted and heavy web frameworks that are out there, like Bootstrap and Tailwinds. Both of these projects are great open source frameworks what allow web developers to create some incredible sites, but they include so much code within them that I will never, ever use.

        Put simply, it’s a waste for me to use them.

      • Self-host a password manager on OpenBSD

        I’ve been using Rubywarden to store and access my passwords from OpenBSD workstations and iOS toys. But recent redondant failures from the iOS App and rubywarden not being maintained anymore led to the need for a new solution.

        I was investing on pass+pgp+git but it was quite complex. Following a toot from Solene@, I tried KeePassXC and it does cover my requirements: [...]

      • [Older] Additional YUM Repositories for CentOS, RHEL, and Fedora Linux

        By default all Linux distributions offer all core level packages and other (free and non-free) packages.

        Enterprise Linux offers long-term support (10 year life cycle) that enables the customer to use the operating system with greater stability and security.

        At the same time they do not update existing packages with their respective upstream releases to maintain compatibility, instead Red Hat usually backports security and bug fixes for those packages.

      • Download Slackware iso to install on VirtualBox or PC – Linux Shout

        Slackware is one of the oldest Linux distros developed by Patrick Volkerding that is not much popular among the users, however, if you want to experience an advanced Linux distribution then you should give it a try. The purpose behind designing Slackware is to provide excellent stability and that’s the reason why you hardly find a new version release every year.

        Thus, Slackware is an independent Linux that doesn’t follow any particular time period to release a new version like Ubuntu or rolling release distributions. Whenever its developer Patrick thinks there are many innovations and changes around and they are enough stable to be a part of Slackware, you will have a new release.

      • Using Podman and Docker Compose | Enable Sysadmin

        Podman exists to offer a daemonless container engine for managing OCI-compliant containers on your Linux system. Users love it for its ease of adoption as an alternative to Docker. However, many users and the broader container community have been telling us that one missing feature is a “deal-breaker” for them. Up to now, support for Docker Compose, the command-line utility that orchestrates multiple Docker containers for local development, was missing. With Podman 3.0 now in development upstream, we have begun to support Compose. Here’s how it works as a rootful/privileged user.

        The following article discusses how to use Compose by using two examples that Docker has curated and maintained in the awesome-compose Git repository.

      • How To Install VNC Server on Linux Mint 20 – idroot

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install VNC Server on Linux Mint 20. For those of you who didn’t know, Node.js is a Javascript platform for programming that enables users to build network applications very quickly. If you are using Javascript on both the front-end and the back-end, it means your development can be much more consistent and be designed within the same system.

        This article assumes you have at least basic knowledge of Linux, know how to use the shell, and most importantly, you host your site on your own VPS. The installation is quite simple and assumes you are running in the root account, if not you may need to add ‘sudo‘ to the commands to get root privileges. I will show you through the step by step installation of VNC Server on a Linux Mint 20 (Ulyana).

      • 3 Methods to Create Jenkins Pipeline – Classic UI, BlueOcean, Git

        Jenkins is a DevOps tool which can be used to automate your build, test and delivery of software code.

        [...]

        Now this will also ask for your SCM repository details. Enter your git repository details here. If your Jenkinsfile is in a specific branch, make sure to specify the branch name.

      • How to Install Python 3.10 Alpha in Ubuntu 20.04, Ubuntu 18.04 | UbuntuHandbook

        The Python programming language 3.10 is now in development. For testing purpose you can install the alpha release via PPA in Ubuntu 20.04, Ubuntu 18.04, Ubuntu 16.04, Linux Mint 19.x/20, and derivatives.

      • How to Install Apache Kafka in CentOS/RHEL 7

        Apache Kafka is a powerful messaging engine, which is widely used in BigData projects and the Data Analytics life cycle. It is an Open-source platform to build real-time data streaming pipelines. It is a distributed publish-subscribe platform with Reliability, Scalability, and Durability.

        We can have Kafka as a standalone or as a cluster. Kafka stores the streaming data, and it can be categorized as Topics. The Topic will be having a number of partitions so that it can handle an arbitrary amount of data. Also, we can have multiple replicas for fault-tolerant as we are having in HDFS. In a Kafka cluster, the broker is a component that stores the published data.

        Zookeeper is a mandatory service to run a Kafka cluster, as it is used for managing the co-ordinating of the Kafka brokers. Zookeeper plays a key role between producer and consumer where it is responsible for maintaining the state of all brokers.

      • Debuginfo is not just for debugging programs – Red Hat Developer

        For a long time at Red Hat, all executables in RPMs were built with debuginfo enabled. While this practice makes it easier for people in support to investigate issues reported using tools such as GDB and crash, there are other important non-debugging uses for the resulting debuginfo.

        Debuginfo was named for its initial use. Over time, other applications (such as application binary interface [ABI] compliance checking, data struct layout analysis, and performance monitoring) that use the same information needed for debugging have been developed. It is best to think of the debuginfo as mapping information between the executable that compilers generate and the source code that developers write. It helps humans get crucial information to better understand the executable code actually running their systems, and provides a means of double-checking the compiler’s and the developers’ work.

      • How to Install VLC Media Player in Linux

        There is no need to introduce every person on this planet who knows how to operate a PC. Whether it is Linux or Windows System, they know what VLC is.

        But still, for those who don’t know what VLC is? VLC is one of the most popular open-source multimedia player. It is cross-platform and plays almost all media format files.

        There are multiple ways to install VLC in your system using a snaps package from Snapscraft store or as a default package manager for Ubuntu; it is DEB.

      • How to Migrate your CentOS 8 Linux to CentOS Stream – Linux Shout

        As we know RHEL is the upstream version of CentOS, therefore, the 8.x version of Redhat used by CentOS will be discontinued at the end of 2021. Yes, the decision has been taken by the RedHat team, however, they are not completely abandoning the CnetOS project but only the LTS version that has been used widely on various servers, especially by hosting ones. The company will continue with CentOS Stream, a variant of the Linux distribution that has been available since September 2019, a “rolling-release” means the latest update every month and thus fresher packages than Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL).

      • How to set up FreeBSD 12 VNET jail with ZFS – nixCraft

        How do I install, set up and configure a FreeBSD 12 jail with VNET on ZFS? How can I create FreeBSD 12 VNET jail with /etc/jail.conf to run OpenVPN, Apache, Wireguard and other Internet-facing services securely on my BSD box?

        FreeBSD jail is nothing but operating system-level virtualization that allows partitioning a FreeBSD based Unix server. Such systems have their root user and access rights. Jails can use network subsystem virtualization infrastructure or share an existing network. FreeBSD jails are a powerful way to increase security. Usually, you create jail per services such as an Nginx/Apache webserver with PHP/Perl/Python app, WireGuard/OpeNVPN server, MariaDB/PgSQL server, and more. This page shows how to configure a FreeBSD Jail with vnet and ZFZ on FreeBSD 12.x.

      • tuptime – Linux See Historical and Statistical Uptime of System

        Tuptime is a tool for report the historical and statistical real time of the system, keeping it between restarts. Like uptime command but with more interesting output. It works on both Linux and FreeBSD

      • How to Compile PHP 8.0 in Debian 10? | LibreByte

        Now that you’ve learned how to compile PHP you can get all the advantages (bugs fixing, performance improvements and latest features) without waiting for the distribution developers and maintainers add the last stable PHP version to its repository.

      • Ansible playbook to replace multiple lines in a file – The Linux Juggernaut

        Commands like sed and awk allow us to harness the power of regular expressions to search for text-based patterns in files and manipulate the matched text as per our requirement. The thing about regular expressions is that they are confusing. To the new Linux user, regular expressions may as well be another language. Although sed and awk are very powerful tools, mastering them is a tedious task for a system administrator.

      • Using Seashells to display terminal output to a web browser – The Linux Juggernaut

        Having the ability to display your terminal output to a web browser would be a neat feature to have. In this article, we will be discussing a tool named Seashells that does exactly that. Seashells lets you pipe output from command-line programs to the web in real-time, even without installing any new software on your machine. You can use it to monitor long-running processes that produce continuous output to the console. You can also use Seashells to share output with friends! Seashells is actually a client to Seashells.io website. You can either use Seashells.io directly or just install the Seashells client to pipe your output.

      • [Older] BackupPC tutorial on Linux – LinuxConfig.org

        BackupPC is a free and versatile backup suite that can run on Linux systems and supports several protocols like NFS, SSH, SMB, and rsync. It can be used to backup numerous Linux, Mac, and Windows machines.

        It has a lot of nice features like automatic backups and a web interface as its control panel. It also uses file compression and hard links to try and minimize the amount of space that your backups consume. Thus if a file is present on multiple machines, BackupPC is smart enough to only store a single copy of that file in the backup.

      • The creation of a conky – AUR-Nvidia – Nvidia drivers must be functional | Arcolinux.com
      • 10 Wget Command Examples in Linux

        Recently, I have covered how to install wget in Linux with a few simple steps. So, many viewers requested how do we implement these in the practical world.

        Today, we cover 10 wget most used command in Linux. But if you directly jump to these posts or don’t know what we are talking about right now.

        So for you, wget is a non-interactive network downloader that is used to download files from the web over HTTP, HTTPS, and FTP protocol even though the user is not logged in.

      • rename / move Uppercase filenames to lowercase filenames current directory
      • How to setup Redis replication in Linux

        One of the features that make REDIS a good caching application is the ability to configure a cluster with one master/primary & one or more slaves/secondary servers. In this tutorial, we will learn to set up redis replication in our Linux servers.

        For the purpose of this tutorial, we will be creating a single Primary & a single secondary server. So let’s discuss the pre-requisites for setting up redis replication.

      • How to install MetaTrader 4 with the IG Broker on a Chromebook

        Today we are looking at how to install MetaTrader 4 (MT4) with the IG Broker on a Chromebook. Please follow the video/audio guide as a tutorial where we explain the process step by step and use the commands below.

      • Easy guide to install Spotify on Ubuntu (& other debian based distros) – LinuxTechLab

        Unless you have been living under a rock, you would know what SPOTIFY is, but for those who still don’t know. Spotify is now one of the most popular applications to stream music on your Desktop or phone.

      • How to unlock LUKS using Dropbear SSH keys remotely in Linux – nixCraft

        On Linux, we encrypt our partitions and entire disk using Linux Unified Key Setup-on-disk-format (LUKS) for security and privacy reasons. We unlock LUKS protected disk by providing a passphrase at boot time. You need to be in front of your computer or use a remote console to open the encrypted disk under Linux at boot time. However, if your system is in the basement, remote datacenter/office, or upstairs office, you won’t able to unlock and boot your Linux box. We can use the Dropbear SSH server for LUKS encrypted Debian or Ubuntu or any other Linux distro via SSH to solve this problem. Let us see how to unlock LUKS using Dropbear SSH keys in Linux at boot time.

      • How to view stats on your Linux servers with Saidar – TechRepublic

        Admins are obsessed with statistics. It makes sense, given that knowing those stats can mean the difference between a smoothly running server and one that cannot handle the necessary load or traffic. To that end, IT pros go to great lengths to gather the statistics of their servers. And Linux admins have a vast array of tools for that task. One such tool is the curses-based Saidar.

        Saidar is an easy-to-use command line tool that can present stats for CPU, processes, load, memory, swap, network and disk I/O, and file systems information. That’s all important information–especially when you’re tasked with keeping those servers running well.

      • Install Tux Paint 0.9.25 In Fedora / CentOS | Tips On UNIX

        Tux Paint is a free, Open Source Cross-platform drawing software for children between ages 3 to 12.

        Tux Paint works on Windows, Linux, Android, macOS, and other systems. Tux Paint recently released a new major update 0.9.25.

        This tutorial will be helpful for the beginners to install Tux Paint 0.9.25 in Fedora 33 and CentOS 8.x, CentOS 7.x systems.

      • Installing the nvidia driver on a hybrid graphical system with pacman and yay – msi gt70 – geforce gtx670m | Arcolinux.com

        You can type every command or you can put them in a text file and run that one script. The latter is more convenient.
        I have a personal github to install elements after every clean install at github.

      • From start to finish: How to host multiple websites on Linux with Apache – TechRepublic

        In the new TechRepublic Premium series “From start to finish,” we’re going to explore the various things you can do with a Linux server from—you guessed it— start to finish. In other words, we won’t leave out any steps, so you won’t have to refer to another tutorial to complete the process. The only step we will leave out is the installation of Linux, as we’ll assume you have the platform already up and running and ready to serve your needs.

    • Games

      • Simple GOG client for Linux ‘Minigalaxy’ has a small update out | GamingOnLinux

        While GOG continue dragging their feet on supporting Linux with GOG Galaxy, you can use the useful Minigalaxy client which is free and open source.

        It works pretty great too, doing the majority of what you need with downloading and installing games you own from GOG onto your Linux installs. Minigalaxy 1.0.1 is mainly a bug fix release following on from the stable build that went out late in November 2020.

      • Try the pre-alpha of Hyperspace Harvest and run a farm on top of a giant space mammal | GamingOnLinux

        Top marks for originality and total quirkiness here. Sleeper Games have a pre-alpha build out and available for Linux of their new title Hyperspace Harvest.

        It’s going to be a mix of casual farming, with a little genetic engineering and some dungeon crawling on the back of a mysterious giant space mammal who reincarnated you after being involved in some kind of war. You will need to “Grow medicinal crops on the space whale’s’ skin, or venture deep into its anatomy and terminate the corrupted cells yourself!”.

      • The free Settlers II like strategy game Widelands plans a 1.0 release in 2021 | GamingOnLinux

        Free, open source and actually really good – Widelands was originally inspired by The Settlers II and they’ve confirmed their plans for a big release this year.

        Back in July 2020, Widelands Build 21 went out which pulled in lots of big improvements and made it much more worthwhile spending time with. After that, the team working on it continued hacking away and in the latest announcement it was a “golden time for development, with numerous new features added and swarms of bugs fixed” and so “the era of the Widelands beta build releases has come to an end, and the first-ever stable release Widelands 1.0 will be released this summer”.

      • EVERSPACE 2 begins Early Access soon, full Linux support in 2022 | GamingOnLinux

        Keeping you up to date on what’s happening with the open-world space shooter EVERSPACE 2, it seems it’s just about ready to enter Early Access for Windows.

        A game we’re really excited about but it’s nowhere near finished yet. After the successful Kickstarter campaign in November 2019 that saw the team at Rockfish gain over €503K in funding from players, it was due to originally launch fully in Q3 2021 but due to delays elsewhere and 2020 being what it was, the full release is now coming in “the first half of 2022″ which will include “native Linux support” as confirmed in their latest announcement.

      • Space exploration game Earth Analog will have Linux support after the initial release | GamingOnLinux

        As a lover of all things space and sci-fi, Earth Analog looks like it could be a lot of fun to explore. Funcraft Games have also said it’s going to be supported on Linux.

        Earth Analog is a story-rich space flight adventure, where you’re travelling through deep space to find a new home and you get to explore various weird and wonderful worlds that can often be dangerous. Exploration, ship maintenance, ship upgrades, mining and more will be needed to keep going on the journey. If you’re a fan of movies like Interstellar, Funcraft said you should feel right at home. Sounds like a more focused and smaller No Man’s Sky a little perhaps.

      • Guildmaster: Gratuitous Subtitle is a pretty funny fantasy turn-based tactics adventure

        Love your turn-based tactics, party building, amusing conversations and plenty of adventuring? Guildmaster: Gratuitous Subtitle from Jim Makes Games released back in December and it’s genuinely good.

      • Arduino Blog » This sensor-based tic-tac-toe game looks like some touchless fun!

        Tic-tac-toe is normally played with a pen and paper, or perhaps with a physical marker, but maker “techiesms” has put a new spin on this classic pastime.

        His build, as seen here, takes the form of a wooden box that mounts onto the wall with nine square sections arranged in a grid pattern. Players take turns, activating a square by moving their hand near an IR proximity sensor inside each one.

      • An Introduction to Linux Gaming thanks to ProtonDB | Linux Journal

        In this article, the newest compatibility feature for gaming will be introduced and explained for all you dedicated video game fanatics.

        Valve releases its new compatibility feature to innovate Linux gaming, included with its own community of play testers and reviewers.

        In recent years we have made leaps and strides on making Linux and Unix systems more accessible for everyone. Now we come to a commonly asked question, can we play games on Linux? Well, of course! And almost, let me explain.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • Providing KDE software updates from git for fun and profit in openSUSE | dennogumi.org

          Yes, today I’m going to talk about the OBS, that is the Open Build Service, not to be confused with another highly successful open source project.

          As you know, since ages, the openSUSE KDE team provides a series of repositories which track the latest state of the git repositories in KDE, be them either Frameworks, Plasma, or the applications part of the Release Service. This also allows to create Live CDs which can be useful for testing out the software.

          But the question that I’ve seen every now and then is… how it is actually done? Is everything provided by the OBS, or does someone need to add some glue on top of that?

        • Refreshed look | dennogumi.org

          More recently, I’ve been reading about Hugo, a rather fast static site generator which also happens to be packaged for openSUSE. In particular I found the approach to theming better than Jekyll, because you can just override parts of a theme should you require it, instead of forking a whole theme and hope for the best.

          Thus, I used the Ananke theme with some extra additions (documented in the git repository). Importing things was pretty painless. The CSS wasn’t, and I’m sure there are still loads of broken things, but at least I’m moving forward. Please leave a comment if you find anything broken, thanks!

          Hopefully I can blog a little more than just making an update and disappearing again (not that I’ve disappeared: I’ve been fairly active doing packaging work in openSUSE). But again, to quote the words of Merlin, “it is a secret only known to the ancient gods and me.”

        • November/December in KDE PIM

          Following Kévin it’s my turn to show you what happened around Kontact in the previous two months. More than 30 people contributed about 1200 changes in that time, we had a new major release in early December and there’s a virtual New Year meetup on Saturday!

        • KDE’s First Apps Update in 2021 Brings NeoChat, Better Integration of Remote Files

          The KDE Applications 20.12 open-source software suite launched last month, and it probably already arrived in the stable software repositories of many popular GNU/Linux distributions, brining numerous new features and improvements for fans of KDE’s Plasma desktop environment and applications.

          Now, we see the release of the first maintenance update, KDE Applications 20.12.1, which brings a plethora of changes to make your KDE Apps experience better. The biggest change in this point release is the introduction of the first stable version of the brand-new chat client called NeoChat, which uses the Matrix protocol.

        • KDE Announces Plasma 5.20.5 Bug Fix Release. Update Now.

          Coming after almost 5 weeks since the KDE Plasma 5.20 launch, KDE Plasma 5.20.5 is more stable and bugs are fixed mostly. So this is the most stable Plasma today and available as KDE Neon user edition immediately for download and upgrade.

          Being last in the bug fix series, the list of changes is small, obviously. Nothing much on the surface which you can notice. However, here’s the list of changes compiled from the official announcement.

        • KDE Plasma 5.20.5, bugfix Release for January

          Today KDE releases a bugfix update to KDE Plasma 5, versioned 5.20.5 Plasma 5.20 was released in October 2020 with many feature refinements and new modules to complete the desktop experience.

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • Alan Pope: My GNOME Tweaks

          One of the neat things about GNOME Shell is that it’s pretty tweakable – to some degree – to customise it to a user’s preferences. I know some people use GNOME Shell stock experience. I don’t. I have previously written about some of my must-have extensions and add-ons. This supplements that with what I do to further tweak my (currently) Ubuntu 20.10 system to my liking.

        • Jonathan Dowland: PaperWM

          My PaperWM desktop, as I write this post.

          Just before Christmas I decided to try out a GNOME extension I’d read about, PaperWM. It looked promising, but I was a little nervous about breaking my existing workflow, which was heavily reliant on the Put Windows extension.

          It’s great! I have had to carefully un-train some of my muscle memory but it seems to be worth it. It seems to strike a great balance between the rigidity of a tile-based window manager and a more traditional floating-windows one.

    • Distributions

      • Best Linux distros of 2021 for beginners, mainstream and advanced users

        In addition to the top distros that are designed to appeal to a wide number of users and can be tailored as per individual requirements, there are a whole lot of specialized distros that are built for a particular purpose.

        Migrating from Windows? There’s a distro that’ll ease the transition. A Windows update messed up your boot loader? There’s a distro that’ll help you fix it in a jiffy. Want to resurrect an old computer? Need to tie disks into a NAS? Want to run a firewall that’ll shield your entire network? Are you setting up a small home office?

        No matter what your requirement, the diverse open source community has a distro for you.

        In this guide we’ll look at some of the best ones that have been put together for specific tasks.

      • [Old] The Best Linux Distros For Everyday Use: 6 Recommendations

        So, let’s talk about Linux, Hey! Wait! Come back! Get over here, relax, have a seat, we’re just talking about it! That’s all nothing more. Whew! Now, what was the first thing that came to your mind when you heard that word? Perhaps a computer from 1982 with nothing but a black screen on it with cryptic words and symbols on it? Or maybe you envision some wunderkind from a remote part of the world hacking their way into fame whilst playing with their Lego blocks and learning 3rd-grade math? Or maybe you have the same notion that a lot of people do from what they see and hear on the Internet, that Linux is not for the masses, and that it’s only for a select few.

      • New Releases

        • Emmabuntüs DE4 Alpha 2 Released: An All-In-One GNU/Linux Distribution

          After Emmabuntüs Debian Edition 3 v1.03, Emmabuntüs Collective has announced the release of a new Emmabuntüs Debian Edition 4 Alpha 2 (EmmaDE4) for both 32-bit and 64 bit.

          If you don’t know, Emmabuntüs is a Debian-based lightweight Linux desktop distribution, developed by an informal group of people (Emmabuntüs collective).

          [...]

          Lastly, if you want to try Emmabuntüs DE4 alpha 2, its ISO images are available to download from the official site for 32-bit and 64-bit computers.

        • Elive 3.8.18 beta released

          The Elive Team is proud to announce the release of the beta version 3.8.18

      • Screenshots/Screencasts

        • Manjaro 20.2.1 Run Through

          In this video, we are looking at Manjaro 20.2.1, the XFCE edition.

        • Manjaro 20.2.1

          Today we are looking at Manjaro 20.2.1. It comes with Linux Kernel 5.9, XFCE 4.14, and uses about 500 600MB of ram when idling. Enjoy!

      • SUSE/OpenSUSE

        • OpenSUSE Leap 15.2 essential post-install tweaks

          There you go. Hopefully, this guide will make your openSUSE experience more pleasant, more accessible. As I’ve outlined in my review, the updates part is the big issue, and if you can or are willing to get past it, then this tweaking article has value. Otherwise, none of this really makes sense.

          Well, provided you did reach this bit, then we talked about additional repositories, package conflicts, multimedia, fonts, some theming and polish, extra applications, Plasma integration, and a few other elements. If you have any asks as to what else might be required in this distro, don’t be a stranger, and I’ll see what I can do. That said, I won’t be using Leap 15.2, because it just isn’t stable and robust enough for me. Sad face. All right, that would be all for now.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • Why you should wade into the CentOS Stream before selling it short

          I’ll preface this by saying it’s all a matter of taste and familiarity. I’ve been using Ubuntu Server as my go-to for years. Why? Because that particular platform never gets in my way of getting things done. CentOS, on the other hand, does. Whether it’s SELinux, networking or a lack of software I need to use, something always seems to threaten to trip me up when deploying CentOS.

          I understand why. CentOS places quite the premium on security and it shows, at nearly every corner. However, that doesn’t mean Ubuntu Server is a slacker, when it comes to server hardening. Given the nature of what I do, there’s not always time to be mucking around with the hurdles CentOS puts in place. I need to be able to get things done cleaning, efficiently, and without issue. I need to be able to figure out how something is done, do it, and write about it. Ubuntu Server makes that workflow much easier than CentOS.

        • CentOS vs Ubuntu: Server distributions compared [Ed: Not sure if the site is legitimate]

          The main differences between the two main Linux distributions (free) in the server field: CentOS and Ubuntu. Here’s how to choose.

          Anyone who has to choose a Linux distribution for their private server, virtual or dedicated, has practically an unlimited number of options. This is due to the open source nature of the penguin operating system, which allows anyone with the appropriate skills to create their own “ad-hoc” distribution for the most varied needs.

          It must be said, however, that there are few “de facto” standards today in the context of Linux servers. Taking a look at the free options, and therefore accessible to practically everyone, the two dominant distributions are CentOS VPS and Ubuntu VPS. In this article we will see, briefly, what are the main characteristics that differentiate these two distributions, and in which cases it is better to choose one rather than the other. It should be clarified right away, however, that both are valid solutions, widely used precisely because they are excellent.

        • CentOS Replacements En Route After Red Hat’s Move to Drop Support | Data Center Knowledge

          Red Hat didn’t make any friends when it decided to stop supporting the popular free replacement for RHEL, but new alternatives are already in the works.

        • Red Hat OpenShift supports both Windows and Linux containers | ZDNet

          Most container work is done with Linux, but some jobs are also done with Windows-based containers, and now Red Hat makes it possible to manage both with Kubernetes via OpenShift.

        • IBM Cloud Pak for Business Automation: Drive innovation in business operations
      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • You Can Now Download Stable Version Of Linux Mint 20.1 “Ulyssa”

          In mid-December last year, Linux Mint founder Clem Lefebvre announced the beta version of the Linux Mint 20.1 “Ulyssa.”

          Now, according to the official Linux Mint ISO status page, he has approved the stable release of Mint 20.1 and made ISO images available to the public for download and install.

        • Linux Mint 20.1 Available to Download, This is What’s New

          This is latest long-term support (LTS) release of Linux Mint. It will be supported until 2025 with critical security and core app updates. Building out from June’s Linux Mint 20 release (which made our list of the best Linux distro releases in 2020), Linux Mint 20.1 (codenamed “Ulyssa”) is based on Ubuntu 20.04.1 LTS.

          You can download new .iso images from the Linux Mint website and mirror servers. And if you don’t want to do a fresh install, you don’t have to: you can upgrade Linux Mint 20 to Linux Mint 20.1 using the built-in software update tool.

        • Linux Mint 20.1 is Available Now, Here are 9 New Features in This Release

          The Cinnamon edition comes with the latest Cinnamon 4.8 desktop. And, it is an impressive upgrade. In case you’re curious, take a look at what’s new in Cinnamon 4.8:

          You are getting 5% rendering improvement at 4K resolution and a faster JavaScript interpreter. Cinnamon is incomplete without Spices (Cinnamon Add-ons)! This update brings some core changes with Spices. That’s why they will have automatic forward compatibility with better networking support.

          Previously, search results in the application menu were sorted in lexicographical order. But with this release, it’ll be sorted by relevance.

          Till now you had the option to only suspend or hibernate your system. With the new Linux Mint 20.1, you can use Systemd’s suspend-then-hibernate option too. This is an intelligent turn for power saving, it’ll put your system in the suspend state for a while, then if there is no interrupt between that period, the system will hibernate itself.

        • The Definitive Guide to Using and Customizing the Dock in Ubuntu

          When you log into Ubuntu, you’ll see the dock on the left side with some application icons on it. This dock (also known as launcher or sometimes as panel) allows you to quickly launch your frequently used programs.

          I rely heavily on the dock and I am going to share a few tips about using the dock effectively and customize its looks and position.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Best Free and Open Source Software – December 2020 Updates

        For our entire collection, check out the categories below. This is the largest compilation of recommended software. The collection includes hundreds of articles, with comprehensive sections on internet, graphics, games, programming, science, office, utilities, and more. Almost all of the software is free and open source.

      • Facebook’s Visdom Project is now Open Source and Transitioned to OSI Affiliate FOSSASIA [Ed: OSI and FOSSASIA (there are overlaps) promote Microsoft’s proprietary software monopoly (GitHub)]

        OSI Affiliate FOSSASIA welcomes the Visdom data visualization project. The project has been developed at Facebook AI Research since 2017. As part of the transition from Facebook to FOSSASIA Visdom has been relicensed under an OSI approved license – the Apache License 2.0 as fully Open Source. This is a fantastic win for the FOSS community. Visdom is now available on the FOSSASIA GitHub.

      • CMS

        • Run your own Open-source Trello Alternative with Wekan

          Trello is a popular free Kanban-based project management service. Many developers use it for issue/ bug tracking, project management and more. Kanban is a popular agile framework among developers, DevOps and software engineers. It is proven to boost productivity and simplify the production process.

          While Trello is a completely free of service, as it does not require any fee to register and start creating project boards, forming teams starting to get the work done. It is not ideal for companies which want to work on their own platform.

          So, here comes Wekan which is the open-source equivalent for Trello, which include almost all Trello’s features with a self-hosted package ready to install on any server of choice.

      • Programming/Development

        • A hands-on tutorial for using the GNU Project Debugger | Opensource.com

          If you’re a programmer and you want to put a certain functionality in your software, you start by thinking of ways to implement it—such as writing a method, defining a class, or creating new data types. Then you write the implementation in a language that the compiler or interpreter can understand. But what if the compiler or interpreter does not understand the instructions as you had them in mind, even though you’re sure you did everything right? What if the software works fine most of the time but causes bugs in certain circumstances? In these cases, you have to know how to use a debugger correctly to find the source of your troubles.

        • Writing Firebase Apps on Windows, Mac, and Linux Using Electron

          Cross-platform development tools have been around for eons, but with the emergence of Electron, developers finally have true portability, access to the operating system and network, and a full-feature front-end user interface.

        • Learn C by writing a simple game | Opensource.com

          I taught myself about programming back in elementary school. My first programs were on the Apple II, but eventually, I learned C by reading books and practicing. And the best way to practice programming is to write sample programs that help exercise your new knowledge.

        • LLVM 11.0.1 Tagged As The Latest Stable Bits For This Open-Source Compiler – Phoronix

          While LLVM 12.0 should be out around March as the next half-year feature update to this innovative and widely-used open-source compiler stack, LLVM 11.0.1 is now being christened as the only planned stable point release to LLVM 11.

          LLVM 11.0.1 has just over 300 patches since the release of LLVM 11.0 last October. There are many fixes for AArch64, LLDB, CUDA compilation support with -std=c++20, support for building reproducible tarballs, and an assortment of other random fixes throughout. The reproducible tarballs for LLVM are coming by means of dropping superfluous metadata.

        • Perl/Raku

          • Perl Weekly Challenge 94: Group Anagrams and Binary Tree to Linked List

            These are some answers to the Week 94 of the Perl Weekly Challenge organized by Mohammad S. Anwar.

          • ABC Mart

            One thing which I like about Mojolicious is that they put all the functions and methods in alphabetical order. When you get used to that then go back to a module like Git::Raw::Repository with a large number of functions in apparently random order, it does seem like quite a smart move for the reader to use the alphabetical ordering.

        • Python

          • Doing symbolic math with SymPy

            On November 29, version 1.7 of SymPy, a Python library for symbolic mathematics, was released. The new version brings a large number of enhancements and bug fixes, and some minor backward incompatibilities. While these are enumerated in detail in the release notes, we will take advantage of this opportunity to look at some of the things that can be done with SymPy and explore its interface options through several detailed examples.

            What is SymPy?

            SymPy performs symbolic mathematical manipulations using Python. Like others of its kind, it can solve algebraic and differential equations, simplify expressions, apply trigonometric identities, differentiate, and integrate; SymPy knows things about sets, manifolds, tensors, and many other mathematical objects. It offers a convenient interface to Matplotlib, the Python plotting library that I looked at back in 2015; this allows a seamless graphical exploration of results.

            Although they are not limited to algebra, members of this category of software are universally called computer algebra systems (abbreviated CAS), so I will adopt this term here. Computer algebra systems are not used primarily for numerical work, as is a program such as Octave, which I reviewed recently. They combine the encoded knowledge of specialists in diverse mathematical fields with strategies of expression transformation to perform actual symbolic mathematical manipulations. These programs do not replace a human mathematician in creating new mathematical knowledge, but they can solve problems that can be reduced to a set of rules and mechanical procedures, such as finding an integral or factoring a polynomial.

    • Standards/Consortia

      • The New Oldweb.today

        Two days before Christmas Ilya Kreymer posted Announcing the New OldWeb.today. The old oldweb.today was released five years ago, and Ilya described the details in a guest post here. It was an important step forward in replaying preserved Web content because users could view the old Web content as it would have been rendered at the time it was published, not as rendered in a modern browser. I showed an example of the difference this made in The Internet is for Cats.

        Below the fold, I look at why the new oldweb.today is an improvement on the old version, which is still available at classic.oldweb.today

  • Leftovers

    • Opinion | Five Reasons for Optimism in 2021

      In the coming year, we can lay the foundations for a new era of sustainable development, peace, and cooperation, though we must also be vigilant to stop the forces of greed, ignorance, and hatred from hijacking the new technologies for their ulterior purposes.

    • The Ethical Commitment to Be a Punk

      There are some people—those of a certain age and a certain disposition, mostly middle class and white, often male—who will always remember just where they were when they heard the news. I was working as a bike messenger in San Francisco that spring day in 1994, and I can still recall locking up outside City Hall, getting ready to make a court filing, when the boss came on the two-way radio and blurted it out. “It’s all over,” he said, delivering the grim news with an air of barely restrained, mordant self-satisfaction. “Kurt Cobain killed himself, put a shotgun in his mouth.” 

    • ‘Everything that could fall had already fallen’ 25 years ago, an earthquake destroyed the town of Neftegorsk in Russia’s Sakhalin region and killed two thousand people.

      In the fall of 1995, Neftegorsk was officially declared dead — only a memorial, a chapel, and a cemetery were left standing. Earlier that year, on the night of May 28, 1995, the deadliest earthquake in modern Russian history completely destroyed the town. According to official data, 2,040 people were killed — more than half of the town’s residents. Meduza correspondent Alexey Yurtayev spoke with survivors of the earthquake, visited the site where the city once stood, and reconstructed the tragic events in detail.

    • Science

      • The NSA has just declassified and released a redacted version of Military Cryptanalytics, Part III, by Lambros D. Callimahos, October 1977.

        Like Parts I and II, Part III is primarily concerned with pre-computer ciphers. At this point, the document only has historical interest. If there is any lesson for today, it’s that modern cryptanalysis is possible primarily because people make mistakes

        The monograph a while to become public. The cover page says that the initial FOIA request was made in July 2012: eight and a half years ago.

      • National Security Agency (NSA) Military CryptanalyticsPart III by Lambros D. Callimahos, October 1977 [pdf]

        This responds to your Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request of 7 July 2012 for “a copy of Military Cryptanalytics, Part III, by Lambros D. Callamahos. Please review the sections marked as classified for possible declassification and release.” A copy of your request is enclosed. Your request has been processed under the FOIA and the document you requested is on the enclosed CD. Certain information, however, has been deleted from the enclosure.

        Some of the withheld information has been found to be currently and properly classified in accordance with Executive Order 13526. The information meets the criteria for classification as set forth in Subparagraph (c) of Section 1.4 and remains classified SECRET as provided in Section 1.2 of Executive Order 13526. The information is classified because its disclosure could reasonably be expected to cause serious damage to the national security. Because the information is currently and properly classified, it is exempt from disclosure pursuant to the first exemption of the FOIA (5 U.S.C. Section 552(b)(l)). The information is exempt from automatic declassification in accordance with Section 3.3(b)(l) of E.O. 13526.

      • The globalization of evil autocompletion | Stop at Zona-M

        The question is, can the same human beings who create and (often even unconsciously) perpetuate unfair and divisive stereotypes really expect to give software definitive instructions of how to not repeat them? Or trust any software from learning itself, starting from unavoidably biased data? Or have one software do it equally well, for thousands of wildly different cultures?

        The other issue is that, no matter how one tweaked a search engine, the result would be some form of censorship. That is why, I believe, the authors of those paper raise questions about “the desirability of (and responsibility for) policing “inappropriate” search predictions”.

      • Who Remembers the VAX Minicomputer, Icon of the 1980s?
    • Education

    • Health/Nutrition

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • New TCP/IP Vulnerabilities Expose IoT, OT Systems

          This article will touch on TCP/IP stacks’ role in network security, the critical vulnerabilities identified by Forescout, and immediate steps to mitigate AMNESIA:33 attacks.

        • Widely Used Software Company May Be Entry Point for Huge U.S. [Cracking] [iophk: Windows TCO]

          Officials are investigating whether the company, founded by three Russian engineers in the Czech Republic with research labs in Russia, was breached and used as a pathway for [attackers] to insert back doors into the software of an untold number of technology companies. Security experts warn that the monthslong intrusion could be the biggest breach of United States networks in history.

          JetBrains, which counts 79 of the Fortune 100 companies as customers, is used by developers at 300,000 businesses. One of them is SolarWinds, the company based in Austin, Texas, whose network management software played a central role in allowing hackers into government and private networks.

        • Security

          • Zyxel hardcoded admin password found – patch now! – Naked Security

            Towards the end of 2020, a researcher at Dutch cybersecurity company EYE was taking a look at the firmware of a Zyxel network router.

            He examined the password database that shipped in the firmware and noticed an unusual username of zyfwp.

            That name didn’t show up in the official list of usernames shown in the router’s user interface…

            …yet it did have a password hash in the database itself, which was interesting all on its own.

          • Security updates for Thursday

            Security updates have been issued by Debian (golang-websocket, nodejs, and pacemaker), Fedora (mingw-binutils and rubygem-em-http-request), and Ubuntu (linux-oem-5.6 and p11-kit).

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • ‘Going Dark’ Is Bullshit, Says Yet Another Report Detailing All The Ways Law Enforcement Can Obtain Evidence

              “Going dark” is a “problem” that appears to be localized almost entirely at the federal level. While numerous options have presented themselves over the years, the FBI, DOJ, and the president’s law enforcement commission continue to claim encryption poses insurmountable problems to law enforcement. With the exception of one Manhattan prosecutor, no one else seems to believe encryption is much of a problem.

            • Today’s online advertising not only seriously harms privacy, but is seriously broken in other ways; we need to fix it

              A recent Twitter thread by Nandini Jammi, co-founder of Check My Ads, exemplifies the growing awareness that online advertising is at best a waste of money, and probably deeply fraudulent. The thread concerns Uber, which discovered that $100 million of its $150 million ad spend was doing nothing. The author and digital rights activist Cory Doctorow explains how fraud lay at the heart of that waste:

            • Surprise! Singapore Backtracks On Privacy Pledge And Opens Contact Tracing Data To Police

              Singapore has a relatively long history when it comes to using modern technology to create a surveillance state within its borders. The monitoring of use of the internet and other digital services goes way back to 2002, sold to the citizenry as both an anti-terrorism bulwark and a tool to keep hate-speech at bay. Of course, though the populace as a whole seemed to take to the government’s use of surveillance for a variety of reasons, Singapore also has a history of clamping down on any speech it simply doesn’t like.

            • Mass Screening of Electronic Mail: facebook Suspends Controversial ‘Incrimination Machine’

              Member of the European Parliament Patrick Breyer (Pirate Party) welcomes the decision by Facebook to suspend the error-prone mass screening of all private messages for prohibited depictions of minors with subsequent automated reporting of users to the police:

              “The suspension of this error-prone incrimination machine will protect thousands from unfounded criminal investigations,” said the MEP, referring to data from the Swiss Federal Police, according to which 90% of the computer-generated reports are unfounded, for example concerning harmless holiday photos of children playing at the beach. “Relieving the police from these computer-generated charges frees up capacities for an intensified prosecution of organized child sexual abuse, which will truly protect children.”

            • Microsoft is building a new Outlook app for Windows and Mac powered by the web

              Project Monarch is the end-goal for Microsoft’s “One Outlook” vision, which aims to build a single Outlook client that works across PC, Mac, and the Web. Right now, Microsoft has a number of different Outlook clients for desktop, including Outlook Web, Outlook (Win32) for Windows, Outlook for Mac, and Mail & Calendar on Windows 10.

              Microsoft wants to replace the existing desktop clients with one app built with web technologies. The project will deliver Outlook as a single product, with the same user experience and codebase whether that be on Windows or Mac. It’ll also have a much smaller footprint and be accessible to all users whether they’re free Outlook consumers or commercial business customers.

    • Defence/Aggression

      • In Pictures: Pro-Trump Mob Storms US Capitol Building

        “They’re in the chamber. One is up on the dais yelling ‘Trump won that election!’ This is insane.”

      • Opinion | This Is an Insurrection Incited by Trump

        This coup attempt was entirely predictable. In fact, it was predicted.

      • Why Partisanship Will Increase in the Post-Trump Era

        There are short- and intermediate-run, as well as long-run, reasons for this result that have little to do with the Trump phenomenon. Most importantly and immediately, there is a gigantic and increasingly unbridgeable divide on economic policy. And the outcome of this ongoing fight will have an enormous impact on the lives and livelihoods of most Americans.

        First and foremost, there is fiscal policy: the federal government’s use of spending and taxation, in this case to facilitate an economic recovery. The Republicans will try to block most helpful spending as much as possible, perhaps most importantly as a fundamental part of their political strategy. They learned something from the Great Recession of 2008–2009. They fought and reduced Democratic stimulus plans — which were not big enough to begin with — as much as possible. The end result was that unemployment in October 2010 was still at 9.4 percent; and millions more jobs were lacking if we look at the decline in employment since the recession, rather than at the unemployment stats only.

      • Opinion | This Is a Dark, Dark Day for America

        Trump and his enablers have generated a quasi-fascist movement that is poised to perpetuate racist street violence, conspiratorial thinking, and serious perils for a functioning democracy.

      • ‘Really Terrifying Stuff’: US Senate in Lockdown After Pro-Trump Supporters Storm US Capitol

        “I’ve been reporting from the capitol for 11 years, nearly every working day. Never seen it like this.”

      • ‘Arrest the President’: Accountability Demanded After Fascist Mob Incited by Trump Storms Capitol

        “He shouldn’t just be impeached or removed from office. He should be in jail.”

      • “Let’s Go Back Eight Weeks”: Off-the-Rails, Lie-Spewing Trump Pleads for Election Do-Over at DC Rally

        The lame-duck president’s unhinged speech came as members of Congress met to officially certify President-elect Joe Biden’s victory.

      • US National Guard Ordered to Clear and Secure US Capitol Building Under Siege by Pro-Trump Mob

        “Clearly and unsurprisingly, the administration confronted mostly peaceful protests by Black Lives Matter with a thousand-fold more concerted and heavier response.”

      • The Confederacy Finally Stormed the Capitol

        President Donald Trump should be impeached, removed from office, and then arrested for inciting his supporters to besiege and invade the U.S. Capitol. At a speech he gave to a rally of his supporters right before Congress attempted to certify his Electoral College defeat, Trump told his people to go to the Capitol to “support” members of Congress objecting to the certification. He recited his long list of lies about the election, and then egged his people on by telling them that Vice President Mike Pence “didn’t have the courage to do what should have been done to protect our country and our Constitution.” He spoke for nearly two hours.

      • Impeach Trump Immediately

        When the violent chaos that has been unleashed on the United States Capitol by supporters of President Donald Trump is brought under control, the House should immediately impeach Trump for inciting insurrection and the Senate should act just as quickly to remove the defeated president from office.

      • Biden Must Now Determine His Policy Towards Venezuela

        With the nation divided fiercely in half, how could a presidential order to steal an entire country become so easily a Policy of State of the U.S.A.? The reasons go back to before the year 2000.

        Before the people of Venezuela voted for Hugo Chávez as president, Venezuela was little known in the US and the media hardly mentioned it. That is because the US had a cozy arrangement with the upper class of the country. The latter had handed over the pumping of, and producing, the crude to US operators. The “administrative costs” paid were hefty, and the US was guaranteed a constant flow of oils and gas. The Pentagon maintained close ties with Venezuela’s military. For the State Department, which provides guidance to the media, no news was good news.

      • A Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin Will Widen the Civil-Military Gap

        The end of the Cold War in 1991, which followed the collapse of the Berlin Wall, the Warsaw Pact, and the Soviet Union itself, should have challenged the notion that the United States requires sole military predominance over the entire global community.  We never debated the need for hundreds of U.S. military bases and facilities the world over; modernizing nuclear weaponry; and the end of civilian supremacy in the national security bureaucracy.  The wretched Trump legacy even includes $15 billion for a Space Command that creates a new danger.

        Instead, we have witnessed bipartisan majorities for increased defense spending; the appointment of retired and even active duty general officers to positions that should belong to  civilians; and the military domination of national security and intelligence policy.  In recent years, there has been too much military influence in U.S. decision making as too many active and retired members of the military have become national security adviser, secretary of defense, the director of the Central Intelligence Agency, and even the director of national intelligence.  The best secretaries of defense were civilians, such as Harold Brown and William Perry, who were knowledgeable about research and development, weapons technology, and disarmament.

      • The Gang Leader Speaks

        James Comey was the first to warn us that Trump behaves like a Mafia capo, and Trump’s latest foray in Georgia is precisely that: a gang leader’s demand to “give me what I want or face the consequences.”

        On the surface, the conversation with Brad Raffensperger is about voter fraud: “It’s just not possible to have lost Georgia,” Trump says time and again. . . . there’s nothing wrong with saying that, you know, that you’ve recalculated.”

      • Trump Didn’t End the Forever Wars. Will Biden?

        Yes, children, believe it or not, people used to drop in on each other, maskless, once upon a time. They had come to hang out with my partner Jan Adams and me. Among other things, Max wanted to get some instructions from fellow-runner Jan about taping his foot to ease the pain of plantar fasciitis. But it soon became clear that he and Bob had a bigger agenda for the evening. They were eager to recruit us for a new project.

        And so began War Times/Tiempo de Guerras, a free, bilingual, anti-war tabloid that, at its height, distributed 100,000 copies every six weeks to more than 700 anti-war organizations around the country. It was already clear to the four of us that night—as it was to millions around the world—that the terrorist attacks of September 11th would provide the pretext for a major new projection of U.S. military power globally, opening the way to a new era of “all-war-all-the-time.” War Times was a project of its moment (although the name would still be apt today, given that those wars have never ended).

      • “Unprecedented Moment”: Far-Right Forces Swarm D.C. to Back Overturning Election, Egged On by Trump

        Thousands who refuse to accept President Trump’s 2020 election loss to Joe Biden are protesting in Washington, D.C., as Congress meets to count the Electoral College votes and certify the results. Mayor Muriel Bowser has called in the National Guard ahead of the protests, after anti-democracy protesters clashed with police near Black Lives Matter Plaza. Police arrested six people on charges that include bringing illegal guns to the city. National security reporter William Arkin says it is “an unprecedented moment,” with the sitting president actively encouraging the unrest. We also speak with Jason Wilson, an investigative journalist who tracks the political right and extremist movements, who says the Trump presidency has seen a startling merger of the GOP with the far right. “There’s not really a sharp dividing line between violent, far-right street activists and the supporters of the president in Congress,” says Wilson.

      • US Capitol Locked Down After Armed Standoff With Trump Supporters
      • Remove coup plotter Trump immediately!

        This is a coordinated, planned fascist insurrection. Trump supporters passed through police barricades outside the Capitol and entered the building without serious resistance. The passivity of the police in the face of an effort to seize Congress should be compared to the massive assault by police and national guard forces on anti-police violence protesters last June.

        b The response of President-elect Joseph Biden and the Democratic Party as a whole has been politically spineless. Rather than calling for Trump’s immediate removal from office and his arrest, as well as the detention of all the Republican senators and congressmen who have abetted his political conspiracy, Biden called upon Trump to “step up” and go on national television.

        No one who is serious about stopping a coup d’etat urges its chief conspirator to address a nationwide audience of hundreds of millions.

        This response is worse than pathetic. It is criminally irresponsible. In the midst of a fascist effort to suppress the certification of the election results, Biden leaves the outcome in the hands of the chief conspirator.

      • China Is Increasing Taiwan Airspace Incursions

        The Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) flew about 380 sorties into Taiwan’s air defense identification zone (ADIZ) last year, a defense ministry statement said last week.

        The PLA began dispatching warplanes toward the island after Taiwan’s President Tsai Ing-wen was re-elected for a second term in January, but the activity dramatically increased in the second half of the year in 2020 and is now almost a daily occurrence.

      • Trump egged on the rioters at the Capitol. He needs to be removed from office — now.

        What should be even more unfathomable is that they were egged on and encouraged by the sitting president of the United States. His ego and despotism are now actively allowing armed rioters to lay siege to our institutions as he stands watch.

        In fact, you can draw a direct line from his call last September for the Proud Boys to “stand back and stand by” — which was a direct encouragement of their already violent actions — to this un-American siege on the United States Capitol.

      • The Attempted Coup at the Capitol Proves This Is the United States of QAnon

        Now, the image of Angeli, a man who had previously been dismissed as a lone wackjob clinging to an inane conspiracy theory, was going viral on these very platforms, for taking one of the most powerful offices in the country by force and quite literally presiding over it. If nothing else, the photo was proof (to everyone except QAnon supporters themselves, who predictably claimed that the pro-QAnon messaging at the rally was the work of antifa) that we had dismissed Angeli and his ilk as fringe extremists at our peril. With the bolstering of a lax security force; platforms like Twitter and Facebook, which have been criticized for years for failing to take action against conspiracy theories; and the President himself, who overtly encouraged the uprising during his speech at the pro-Trump rally on Wednesday, Angeli was showing millions of aghast Americans that it was his world — we were just living in it.

      • This could all have been prevented: How mental health experts were silenced

        Mental health experts could have helped to prevent Trump’s election in 2016, minimized his destructiveness from 2016 to 2020, and/or thwarted his re-election chances in 2020. Their collective voices could have been loud, compelling and impactful. History will show that the mainstream media has been as complicit with Donald Trump as any other group of enablers, including congressional Republicans, cabinet members, close associates and his millions of supporters.

        The role of the free press is vital in a representative democracy such as ours. It is protected in the First Amendment of the Constitution. The overarching purpose of the press is to be a watchdog of government and of our elected officials. The press is our indispensable friend. We depend on it to expose, inform, explain, interpret and, yes, warn. The free press is the foundation of our democratic way of life. It is what separates us from authoritarian regimes and third world countries.

      • NLG Condemns Attempt by Fascist Mob Incited by Trump to Overturn Election, Complicity by Law Enforcement

        The National Lawyers Guild (NLG) opposes today’s attempt to overturn the election, led by Trump loyalists and right-wing operatives in Washington, DC, in the strongest terms possible. Following a rally by Trump where he continued to falsely claim victory, a right-wing fascist mob stormed and occupied the U.S. Capitol Building and several state Capitol buildings in an attempt by white supremacists and other revanchists to preserve the racist, sexist, and colonial inequalities on which the United States was founded—with complicity by law enforcement.

        At the root of today’s right-wing violence are centuries-long efforts to disenfranchise voters of color, made central in this presidential election. For weeks, the Republican party facilitated the administration’s racist, false narratives of a “stolen election,” culminating in today’s attack on the Capitol Building.

        At the outset of Trump’s term on January 20, 2017, police responded violently to protesters at his inauguration, deploying chemical and other “less-lethal” weaponry, ultimately kettling a random assortment of over 200 people, arresting and charging them with breaking a few windows—with potential sentences of up to 70 years.

        Since May of last year, DC police have brutally punished protesters for demonstrating against the state, police violence, and white supremacy. Those demonstrators demanded a revolution in pursuit of liberation, equality, and against fascism and white supremacy, which police met with violence and mass arrests. As part of the nationwide movement for Black lives, similar events played out throughout the country, which the NLG has supported through its mass defense program.

    • Environment

      • More trees may do less to slow the climate crisis

        In theory, more trees should mean a lower risk of dangerous climate change. In practice, it may not be so simple.

      • Opinion | With Climate Action Finally on the Table, Journalists Must Redouble Their Commitment to the Climate Story

        A new year’s resolution: climate journalism to match the crisis.

      • A New Year’s Resolution: Climate Journalism to Match the Crisis

        This article is published as part of Covering Climate Now, a global consortium of news outlets strengthening coverage of the climate story.

      • Environmental Capitalism and Climate Change Wars: Australia in 2000

        These views came in light of the release by the Australian National Archives of the 2000 cabinet papers. Climate change sceptics are not in the ascendant; the Australian Greenhouse Office is working on a variant of the ETS, and requested funding for its operations in the May budget.

        This is a far too rosy reading. The Howard government had already argued in December 1997 at Kyoto (Conference of the Parties COP3) that greenhouse gas emissions growth would be permitted to 108% of its 1990 baseline. Along with Iceland and Norway, it was one of three countries granted an increase in emission levels from its 1990 base. To this could be added Australia’s refusal to ratify the Kyoto Protocol, though Prime Minister John Howard was still boastful of his environmental measures, including the creation of the Australian Greenhouse Office.

      • İstanbul has enough water for 45 days, Ankara for 110 days

        Indicating that as of yesterday (January 5), the amount of drinking and service water in İstanbul’s Drinking Water Dams was around 138 million cubic meters, Uğurlu said, “Accordingly, the dams have water that will be sufficient for İstanbul for a maximum of 45 days.”

        Stressing that further environmental pollution and health problems are awaiting İstanbulites if the drought persists, Uğurlu said that a decision should be urgently made between water shortage and artificial rainfall.

      • Energy

        • After Court OKs Trump Arctic Refuge Auction, Biden Urged to Immediately Ban Drilling on Public Lands

          “Trump’s last-ditch effort to extract fossil fuels in this sacred region is a direct assault on Indigenous sovereignty, our climate, and communities.”

        • Rotary Engine Making A Comeback In 2022 As A Range Extender For Mazda MX-30 EV

          For those not already familiar, a rotary engine uses a rotating triangular rotor mounted to an eccentric shaft to produce its power, rather than the pistons and crankshaft of a traditional engine. This allows it to be lighter and much more compact, as well as have less vibration, than a piston engine of the same power, making it ideal for use as a range extender.

        • Paris by Bike

          Of course, cities like Brussels and Berlin have been improving too. And Paris is still far behind Europe’s true cycling capitals, like Amsterdam and Copenhagen, which have been building their bike infrastructures since the 1970s.

          But Paris is notable for the speed of its makeover. When visitors kept away by the pandemic finally come back, they’ll see that cordoned-off bike routes now crisscross the capital and connect it to nearby suburbs. Rue de Rivoli, the wide street that runs past the Louvre, has been entirely closed to private cars. Parisian drivers now expect to see bikes, and some even try not to hit them.

          What happened? How did Paris go from a place where biking felt suicidal to one where even neurotics like me pedal around town?

        • India’s richest man shifted his focus from fossil fuels to the internet in 2020

          Mukesh Ambani, the 63-year-old chairman of the country’s most valuable publicly listed company, Reliance Industries (RIL), became richer during the pandemic. And his oil-to-telecom conglomerate became debt-free thanks to more than $20 billion in investment from global tech platforms backing his vision for the 50-year-old company’s future.

        • Are we finally at a tipping point in the defeat of fossil fuels?

          Even if the industry ultimately wins some of its current battles, it might not be able to keep investors on board. The prospect that some future judicial decision could imperil their existing investments deprives them of “certainty from the government,” as one industry lobbying group warned in March. This threat is compounded by the prospect that, in the Biden years to come, other parts of the government may finally begin taking action to stop climate destruction, which could leave fossil-fuel assets “stranded.”

          If the green movement can continue to disrupt the certainty that investing in oil fields and pipelines will return big profits, count on this: capitalists will begin to desert fossil fuels big time. Billionaire investment strategist Jeremy Grantham predicts a tipping point in the near future. He expects that investors will respond to the mounting threats to the fossil-fuel industry “very slowly” for a while and then “all at once.” The point of resistance, then, is to increase the delays, closures, and disruptions that make fossil fuels a risky investment, therefore ensuring that the “all at once” tipping point arrives before humanity crosses the threshold of irreversible catastrophe.

        • [Old] South America Set To Struggle With Stranded Oil Assets

          Sharply weaker oil prices and the COVID-19 pandemic are weighing heavily on the outlook for crude oil. It is not only U.S. shale oil and gas which will experience a wave of stranded assets because of the poor outlook for crude oil, such an event is also looming in Latin America. The latest oil rally, spurred on by hopes of a coronavirus vaccine, has seen Brent climb more than 33% since the start of June 2020 to around $49 per barrel, but that still may not be enough. The global push to reduce emissions, decarbonize the world economy and slow climate change are only adding to the pressure on oil markets. A key threat for the future of oil in Latin America is the emergence of peak oil, which is expected to arrive in 2030 or even sooner. [...]

        • [Old] The Finance Industry Passed a Climate Turning Point This Year

          The industry seems to have passed a turning point. As inflows to ESG-themed funds and demand for climate-related financial services grow, claiming to treat the environment as a serious issue has no perceptible downside and great advantages.

      • Wildlife/Nature

    • Finance

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • Opinion | The Republican Party and Victimhood as Ideology

        Republican victimhood hijacks legitimate suffering to elevate itself into self-anointed martyrdom.

      • ‘Era of Small Ideas Is Over’: With Democrats Poised to Seize Senate, Progressives Say Party Has Mandate to Go Big

        “Recurring survival checks, union jobs that pay a living wage, guaranteed healthcare, racial justice, voting rights, immigration reform, climate action, reproductive justice, education, and much more. It can’t wait!”

      • Opinion | The Pennsylvania Debacle Is Proof Trumpism Is Entwined With Republicanism All the Way Down

        Nothing is over, to paraphrase Senator John Blutarsky, until they say it is. Which often is never.

      • ‘Kill the Filibuster’: Senate Democrats Urged to Act Quickly to End Era of GOP Obstruction

        “Mitch McConnell absolutely should not have a veto.”

      • Despite Trump’s Claims, Mike Pence Has No Power to Reject Joe Biden’s Win
      • With Democrats Poised to Seize Senate, Progressives Urge Party to Go Big
      • Trumpery, a Tally of Sorts

        In the interest of balance, here are some other things Trump did:

        + Children are taken from their parents and incarcerated.

      • America’s Continuing Crisis of Democracy

        These two milestone dates will simply reveal how deep the crisis of America’s truncated, capitalist form of limited Democracy has become. And how likely it will continue and deepen into 2021 and beyond.

        January 6 and 20 is not the ‘endgame’ of the attack on Democracy by Trump and his radical right wing supporters. Those dates may mark the beginning of renewed attack on a new level and the commencement of a more dangerous period thereafter.

      • Adding to the Fire
      • Progressives Back Rep. Cori Bush’s Resolution to Expel Lawmakers Who Incited Violent Siege of Capitol

        “This is the standard for Democratic members of Congress right now.”

      • Human Rights Watch Urges Biden to End Trump’s ‘Devastating’ Remain In Mexico Policy

        The policy under Trump, and made only worse under the pandemic, “has needlessly and foreseeably exposed children and adults to a high risk of violence and other harm.”

      • In 2021, the Best Way to Fight Neofascist Republicans is to Fight Neoliberal Democrats

        Yet, in 2021, progressives should mostly concentrate on challenging the neoliberalism of Democratic Party leaders. Why? Because the neoliberal governing model runs directly counter to the overarching responsibilities of the left — to defeat right-wing forces and to effectively fight for a decent, life-affirming society.

        Neoliberalism can be defined as a political approach that “seeks to transfer the control of economic factors from the public sector to the private sector” — and strives to “place limits on government spending, government regulation, and public ownership.” Neoliberalism can be described more candidly as vast, systemic, nonstop plunder.

      • Opinion | The Tip of The Spear
      • Bernie Sanders Says Trump ‘Directly Responsible’ for Insurrection Effort

        “Trump will go down in history as the worst and most dangerous president in history.”

      • Joel Bakan on How Good Corporations Are Bad for Democracy

        That book and movie embedded in the American mind the idea of a corporation as a psychopath.

        Bakan analyzed the corporation the way a psychiatrist would analyze a patient.

      • How Josh Hawley Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Donald Trump

        I’m not surprised that the two senators most eagerly vying to undermine American democracy to score political points with Donald Trump’s base—Ted Cruz (Texas) and Josh Hawley (Missouri)—are lawyers by training. That’s because I know how they were trained. Cruz went to Harvard Law School (as I did) and was a member of the Federalist Society (as I was not). Hawley went to Yale Law School and was the president of that school’s Federalist Society. They, along with Senators Tom Cotton and Mike Lee, of Arkansas and Utah respectively, form the Senate’s “Federalist Society Caucus.” I’ve met horsemen of the apocalypse who are less destructive.

      • Before Chaos Hit, GOP Lawmakers Denounced for ‘Desperate Attempt at a Coup’ by Denying Election Results

        “Democracy will prevail again today,” declared Indivisble and Stand Up America, “and history will not speak kindly of those who attempted to subvert it.”

      • “Performative” Republican Fascism Gets a Free Pass

        They are backed in this bluntly authoritarian and truth-denying move by Vice President Mike Pence, whose job it is to preside over the certification process. Instead of promising to play his constitutionally appointed role, Pence says he welcomes the blatantly deceitful and seditious challenge to an electoral outcome that has been validated again and again by election officials and judges over weeks of farcical challenge. Never mind that repeated lawsuits and expensive recounts have failed to produce any serious evidence for the openly ridiculous charge that the 2020 election was “stolen” for Biden.

        The noxious Republican Congressional challenge comes even after Trump has been caught red-handed in another one of his “perfect calls” – an extraordinary hour-long phone “conversation” in which Trump tried to bully Georgia’s Republican Secretary of State into “recalculating” his state’s vote in Trump’s favor. It is a state and a federal felony to solicit voter fraud on the part of a public election official. Fulton County, Georgia prosecutors are considering charges against Trump.

      • Activists Brace for Far Right Violence as Trump’s Diehard Backers Flood DC
      • Winners and Losers in Georgia

        The runoff Senate races in Georgia were still so close on Tuesday night that networks and news agencies remained reluctant to declare winners. But after midnight the trend was clear: Democrats Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff both had the lead over their Republican rivals, Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue. Warnock was on a path to a substantial victory; Ossoff’s race was more of a squeaker.

      • How the System Kept Failing the Only Woman on Federal Death Row

        On Christmas Eve, a federal court ruled that the government had acted illegally when it set a new execution date for Lisa Montgomery, the only woman on federal death row. For Montgomery, whose life has been shaped by chronic violence and the failures of those in power to stop the abuse, it was one of the few times the government had ever stepped in to protect her.

      • How Georgia Made Senate History

        Georgia is about to send the South’s first Black Democratic senator, and the state’s first Jewish senator, to Washington, D.C. And it’s about to make the odious Mitch McConnell the Senate minority leader. How in God’s name did this happen?

      • Progressive Push for $2,000 Checks in Georgia Shows Bold, Universal Policies Winning Strategy for Democrats

        “In almost every respect, the campaigns that Warnock and Ossoff ran were closer to what progressives counseled than what moderates have counseled.”

      • Georgia Dems Relied Heavily on Massive Corporate War Chest to Cinch Historic Election

        In order to beat GOP incumbents David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler in the Georgia Senate elections, Democrats had to spend big, raising hundreds of millions of dollars in the process.

      • ‘We Are on a Strong Path’: Democrats Begin to Celebrate as Warnock and Ossoff Edge Towards Possible Victory in Georgia

        “Say it with me,” stated Congresswoman Katie Porter as votes continued to be counted: “Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.”

      • Live Blog: Congress Returns to the Floor; Electoral College Certification Will Resume, Pelosi Says
      • Democrats Gain Control of Senate With Warnock and Ossoff Victories in Georgia
      • Georgia Turning Blue? In Victory for Grassroots Organizers, Warnock Wins Senate Runoff; Ossoff Leads

        Democrats appear on the brink of taking control of the U.S. Senate after Reverend Raphael Warnock won a special election over Republican Senator Kelly Loeffler, while Democrat Jon Ossoff has a slim lead in his runoff against Republican Senator David Perdue. If Ossoff wins his race, the Senate will be split 50-50, with Vice President-elect Kamala Harris serving as the tie-breaking vote, giving Democrats more power to pass President-elect Joe Biden’s legislative agenda. Reverend Warnock, the pastor of the Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta, which was the spiritual home of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., will become the first Black Democrat to ever represent a Southern state, as well as the first Black senator from Georgia and just the 11th Black senator in U.S. history. We speak with Anoa Changa, an Atlanta-based journalist who covers electoral justice and voting rights, who says the Democratic victory in the state is down to grassroots organizers. “Organizing and the amazing work that has been done by a broad coalition of multiracial, mutliethnic organizers across the entire state, from rural to urban to suburban communities, really is the true story of what has been happening in Georgia,” says Changa.

      • Why Sacha Baron Cohen Finally Revived Borat: ‘I Felt Democracy Was in Peril’

        “My general conclusion is that these are very nice people, who are doing horrible things they justify to themselves by saying that there is no good without bad,” says Baron Cohen. “I don’t agree with that principle. I think you should try to have a business that is good and try to get rid of the bad.”

        Baron Cohen didn’t just speak out about the danger he saw in leaving Silicon Valley’s power unchecked — he organized. The actor helped create Stop Hate for Profit, a coalition of civil rights groups and advocacy organizations, such as the NAACP, Color of Change, Free Press and the ADL designed to hold tech companies accountable for hate speech on their platforms. To that end, the group got A-list celebrities like Katy Perry and Kim Kardashian West to boycott Instagram for 24 hours. It also organized an exodus of advertisers such as Coca-Cola and McDonald’s from Facebook to pressure the platform to crack down on disinformation being spread by users.

        “I credit Sacha with the existence of Stop Hate for Profit,” says Roger McNamee, an advisor to the organization and an early Facebook investor turned outspoken critic. “He’s sort of our spiritual leader. He brought with him massive energy and urgency and this creative spark.”

      • Some comments I’m seeing on Georgia’s runoff…

        …just confirm one thing I’ve always thought of Americans.

        [...]

        The only thing worse than e-voting is online voting, for all the reasons I already explained in detail elsewhere. Here, today, it is only necessary to highlight one thing:

        the comments above, and the millions similar that will surely follow, simply could not exist, if US voting happened as described two paragraphs above. If vote casting were manual, and vote counting happened that way, maybe under a live webcam in every booth… this would not completely eliminate frauds (nothing could), but it would make large scale fraud immensely harder, while making immensely easier to trust the system. It’s as simple as that. No, better: voting has to be as simple as that. See here, again.

        [...]

        is the paper “Tessera Elettorale” (Election Card) that every italian citizen automatically receives as proof of its right to vote, as soon as he or she comes of age (18 years). That is, every italian adult is, by definition, also in the voting register. Every time you go to vote, the voting officers stamp one of those circles. When all the circles are stamped, you get another card. Usually takes 2 or 3 hours, when it just does not arrives in one’s mailbox. Of course, together with that card, everbody has to show a photo ID, to avoid impersonation, or multiple voting.

      • Howie Hawkins Condemns Right Wing Invasion of the US Capitol

        The disruption of the Electoral College vote by Congress today by an invasion of the US capitol by a far-right authoritarians deserves total condemnation.

        This incident raises questions about how the security details for the US capitol allowed this disruption of Congress to occur. How could they not have been prepared to secure the Capitol perimeter? The contrast with the overwhelming policy presence and use of force against antiwar and anti police brutality demonstrations is striking. An investigation is called for to answer these questions.

      • The New Humanitarian | COVID-19 sees more expectant Colombian mothers turn to traditional help

        In November, Juana del Carmen Martínez, an Afro-Colombian midwife self-taught in traditional medicine, waited outside the door of a zinc-roofed shack on the outskirts of Quibdó, the capital of Chocó, a region in western Colombia.
        Inside waited Elina Chamorro, a young Indigenous woman about to deliver a baby girl.
        Martínez had come to find out if Chamorro had gone into labour. She had brought a medicinal plant, celandine, to brew with cinnamon and sugar. If labour pains continue after the expectant mother drinks the tea, the birth is imminent.

        The scene reflected ongoing maternal care not only in Chocó, but in communities throughout Colombia.

        In rural areas, the COVID-19 pandemic has driven up maternal mortality as pregnant women have avoided health centres. Many women have instead resorted to Afro-Colombian midwives – who have inherited ancestral knowledge and skills – for care prior to their deliveries. But these health workers often lack official recognition of their work.

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • Cass Sunstein’s No Good, Horrible, Very Bad Idea For Using Defamation To Fight ‘Fake News’

        Cass Sunstein is a famous legal scholar, who is probably most well known for his book “Nudge” about design decisions that governments can take to influence better behavior. The last time we wrote about him was back in 2014 when he decided to write a Bloomberg column attacking free speech, by saying that free speech hurts public civility and democratic self-government. Specifically, he was attacking one of the most important 1st Amendment cases the Supreme Court has ever heard, NY Times v. Sullivan, which cemented very important 1st Amendment protections in defamation cases — such as establishing the “actual malice” standard to make sure that defamation law was compatible with the 1st Amendment.

      • Content Moderation Case Study: Dealing With Controversial & Sexual Fan Fiction (May 2007)

        Summary: Sexual content can be challenging for content moderation on a number of different levels — especially when it involves fictional content about taboo, controversial, or even illegal activities. Literary fiction around these topics has been controversial throughout history, including books like Vladimir Nabokov’s Lolita, which focuses on a story told (somewhat unreliably) by a middle-aged male English professor who becomes obsessed with a 12 year-old girl.

      • Aaron Good and Adam Bessie – The Project Censored Show

        Notes: Aaron Good earned his Ph.D. from Temple University and is a history instructor in the Philadelphia area. His article with Peter Dale Scott, “Was the Now-Forgotten Murder of One Man on September 9, 2001 a Crucial Pre-condition for 9/11?” can be found at here.

      • Sex workers must go POSSE | Stop at Zona-M

        An activist for internet rights group Fight for the Future, said that changes to Section 230 “could have profound chilling effects on social movements.” For example, platforms such as Facebook and Twitter could be hesitant to keep up the videos of police brutality that helped spark protests this summer if they could be sued for defamation by officers involved.

    • Freedom of Information/Freedom of the Press

      • Hong Kong police visit offices of Apple Daily and others, requesting election information

        Law enforcement knocked on the doors of pro-democracy newspaper Apple Daily and online news outlets StandNews and InMedia with a warrant, ordering them to provide information on last summer’s primary election candidates within seven days, according to local reports. The police did not search the newsrooms.

        This comes hours after 53 former lawmakers, district councilors, activists, and scholars were arrested for their involvement in the pro-democracy camp’s primary election last year. They are reportedly accused of subversion under the city’s national security law, an offense that carries a maximum sentence of life imprisonment.

      • National security law: Hong Kong rounds up 53 pro-democracy activists

        But the crackdown appeared to confirm the fears of many who warned about the reach of the law, with Amnesty International saying the arrests are “the starkest demonstration yet of how the national security law has been weaponised to punish anyone who dares to challenge the establishment”.

      • ‘Absolutely Outrageous’: UK Judge Denies Julian Assange Bail, Keeping WikiLeaks Founder in Prison

        “Shows how authoritarian the British judiciary is. The only thing the U.S. cares about is keeping Assange in a cage, silenced, and disappeared. This gives them the best of all worlds: he stays in prison, with no need to prove he’s guilty of anything.”

      • Both Tortuous and Torturous

        Magistrate Vanessa Bararitser walked into Westminster Magistrates Court No.1 at 10.12am this morning with the sunniest smile and most carefree disposition I have ever seen her adopt. Her shoulders appeared visibly lifted. She positively beamed at Clair Dobbin, counsel for the US government, as she invited her to put the case for the prosecution as to why Julian Assange should not be released on bail.

      • British Judge Keeps Assange In Prison, Despite Ruling Against Extradition

        A British district judge denied bail for WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange after a hearing in which the prosecution argued he had helped NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden “flee justice” and would abscond if released from the Belmarsh high-security prison.“As far as Mr. Assange is concerned, this case has not been won,” Judge Vanessa Baraitser declared. She said the United States government “must be allowed to challenge [her] decision.”

        Baraitser referred to the lengthy history of the case and how he “jumped bail” and entered the Ecuador Embassy to obtain asylum in 2012.She went on to highlight the “huge support networks” he still has “should he again choose to go to ground,” and Baraitser agreed with the prosecution that WikiLeaks’ assistance of Snowden made Assange a flight risk.Assange has been confined at Belmarsh since he was arrested and expelled from the Ecuador embassy in April 2019. All along, Judge Vanessa Baraitser agreed with prosecutors that he was a flight risk.“Mr. Assange’s past conduct shows the lengths he is prepared to go to avoid extradition proceedings. If I released him today, he would not return to face these extradition proceedings,” Baraitser declared during a hearing in March 2020, when the COVID-19 pandemic was initially intensifying worldwide.In her ruling on bail, despite evidence of a recent outbreak at Belmarsh, the judge maintained that the facility was properly caring for prisoners and Assange would be safe.Edward Fitzgerald, an attorney for Assange, argued the extradition decision changed any motive Assange would have to flee London before the case was resolved. In fact, the extradition decision came with an order of discharge for Assange.“The logical outcome of the ruling would be he regains liberty at least conditionally,” Fitzgerald stated.Fitzgerald questioned whether the Justice Department is even serious about an appeal, given recent reporting on the incoming administration of President-elect Joe Biden.Although Fitzgerald indicated Assange would be willing to wear a GPS tracking device while under house arrest, the judge gave no reasoning why this would not be enough to prevent him from absconding before the date of his appeal.Assange has not seen his family in person since March 2020, and Belmarsh has suspended social visits. It is widely recognized that physical contact would alleviate the mental distress that factored into the judge’s decision against extradition.London is on lockdown as a mutated variant of COVID-19 rips through the city, and the date for the appeal proceedings is unknown.And here’s my full video report that was broadcast immediately after proceedings concluded:

      • Journalists, Activists Condemn UK Decision to Keep Assange Locked Up without Charge

        A United Kingdom court has ruled that Wikileaks cofounder Julian Assange must remain in prison, despite an earlier ruling that he could not be extradited to the United States.

      • British Judge Denies Bail to WikiLeaks’ Founder Assange

        Assange will remain in London’s Belmarsh Prison, where he has been detained since his April 2019 arrest for skipping bail seven years earlier in a separate court case.

      • The Case Against Julian Assange Is Also a Case Against a Free Press

        Counts 9 through 17 of the Assange indictment involve “disclosure of national defense information,” a felony punishable by up to 10 years in prison. That penalty applies to anyone who “willfully communicates, delivers, transmits or causes to be communicated” such information to “any person not entitled to receive it.”

        This felony is the bread and butter of any journalist who covers national security issues and publishes information that the government would prefer to keep secret. So is the conduct described in Count 1, which alleges that Assange conspired to receive national defense information, and Counts 2 through 8, which allege that he obtained it.

      • Julian Assange loses extradition bail bid

        The US is now appealing that decision – and had opposed releasing the 49-year-old from a maximum security prison before the case is heard.

      • Vietnam court jails journalists critical of state for spreading ‘propaganda’

        Pham Chi Dung, Nguyen Tuong Thuy and Le Huu Minh Tuan were convicted of “making, storing, spreading information, materials, items for the purpose of opposing the state” at a one-day trial in Ho Chi Minh City, the Ministry of Public Security said.

        Dung established the Independent Journalists Association of Vietnam in 2014, which police said had sought regime change.

        Despite sweeping economic reform and increasing openness to social change, Vietnam’s ruling Communist Party retains tight media censorship and tolerates little criticism.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • No Charges Filed Against White Officer Who Shot and Paralyzed Jacob Blake
      • “Miscarriage of Justice”: No Charges Against White Kenosha Officer Who Shot & Paralyzed Jacob Blake

        In Kenosha, Wisconsin, District Attorney Michael Graveley has announced that no charges will be filed against the white police officer who fired seven shots at Jacob Blake, paralyzing the 29-year-old Black man in August. Officer Rusten Sheskey fired the shots at point-blank range into Blake’s back as he leaned into his car, with his three children, aged 3, 5 and 8, inside the vehicle. Prosecutors maintain the shooting was in self-defense because Blake had a small knife in the car. Video of Blake’s shooting sparked an uprising in Kenosha in August against systemic racism and police brutality. Blake’s family denounced the ruling. “In this situation, again, we see a miscarriage of justice,” says Wisconsin state Representative David Bowen. “We do not see a DA that is able to charge an officer who uses his discretion to put seven shots in the back of a Black man.”

      • On Unionizing Against Tech Companies

        If you choose to work at Facebook, or Palantir, or the NSO Group—in the year 2021—you know damn well what they do. You’re not stupid, because if you were you wouldn’t have a job there.

        You work there because they pay you a lot of money.

        So don’t try to rub Activist Aloe on your bruised conscience by starting a club that complains about the work. That work pays your bills, and you are free to leave any time you want.

        This is no different than the hotdog shop.

        Walk away or shut the fuck up.

      • Hong Kong Police Arrest Dozens of Pro-Democracy Leaders

        The mass arrests — which included figures who had called for aggressive confrontation with the authorities as well as those who had supported more moderate tactics — underscored Hong Kong officials’ efforts to weaken any meaningful opposition in the city’s political institutions. The police also visited the offices of at least one law firm and three news media organizations to demand documents, broadening the burst of arrests that started before sunrise and sent a chill through Hong Kong’s already-demoralized opposition camp.

        The moves suggested that the authorities were casting a wide net for anyone who had played a prominent role in opposing the government. The national security law, which the Chinese government imposed in June, has been wielded as a powerful tool to crack down on the fierce anti-Beijing protests that upended the city for months. Since then, the Hong Kong authorities have detained pro-democracy leaders, raided news media offices and ousted opposition lawmakers.

      • At Least 50 Hong Kong Pro-Democracy Figures Arrested in Pre-Dawn Raids

        Other targets of Wednesday’s raids included the headquarters of Stand News, a prominent pro-democracy online news site. Video of the raid livestreamed by a Stand News reporter showed police issuing a court order for the editors to hand over documents related to a national security investigation.

      • Urvika Gola: Dog tails and tales from 2020

        There is no denying in the fact that 2020 was a challenging year for everybody, including animals.

        In India, animals such as dogs who mostly filled their bellies at street food stalls, were starving as there were no street eateries operating during a long long lockdown. I was in my home town, New Delhi, working from home like most of us.

        During the month of July 2020, a dog near the place I live (we fondly called her Brownie) delivered 7 pups in wilderness.

        I would never forget my first sight of them, inside a dirty, garbage filled plot there were the cutest, cleanest, tiniest ball of fur! All of them were toppled as the plot’s surface was uneven.. The first instinct was to put them all together on a flat surface. After the search mission completed, this was the sight…

        [...]

        What I learned during this entire adventure was, there are a lot of sweet, sensitive, caring people that we are just yet to meet. Along the way, we will also meet insensitive and discouraging people, who are unwilling to change or listen, ignore them and continue your good.

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

      • Could The Digital Divide Unite Us?

        The digital divide is not only a rural problem. The digital divide is a problem that unites us across rural, urban, suburban and tribal lands. It is a bipartisan problem. The solution must be multi-pronged: affordable ubiquitous broadband with the appropriate devices and trusted digital literacy and technical support.

      • Pudding-Brained 5G Conspiracies Somehow Get Even Dumber

        We’ve made it repeatedly clear that 5G now exists in some kind of alternate reality, untethered from this complicated mortal plane. On one side, you’ve got telecom giants, hardware vendors, and some politicians busy pretending that 5G is a revolutionary game changer, something you just sprinkle around to create near Utopian smart cities, smart vehicles, and miracle cancer cures. On the other side, you’ve got an international cabal of conspiracy theorists with a head full of pudding, who think 5G gives them COVID or is a diabolical deep state, mind-surveillance tool.

      • Georgia’s runoff may have saved net neutrality

        But while the wins will have impacts across the Democratic platform, they may have particularly strong effects on net neutrality. Before Georgia, net neutrality advocates were facing a gridlock in Congress and the frightening possibility that the incoming president wouldn’t be able to appoint his own FCC commissioners. But as the Senate falls back under Democratic control, the possibilities for net neutrality have expanded dramatically. Now, Democrats can push for more progressive FCC nominees that will reinstate the net neutrality rules from 2015, or even push for legislation that would write net neutrality into law. Flipping these two Senate seats could make the difference between keeping net neutrality in a permanent legal limbo and making it the law of the land.

    • Digital Restrictions (DRM)

      • Family Video, Last National Rental Chain, Is Shutting Down All Remaining Stores

        Family Video is shutting down all of its 248 video-rental locations across the U.S., with the 42-year-old chain citing the COVID pandemic as the final blow to a business already decimated by the rise of streaming.

        The company, which at its peak operated some 800 locations, on Tuesday announced the decision to shut down. The last day for movie rentals at Family Video stores is Wednesday, Jan. 6, but they will remain open until they sell all their inventory — which includes DVDs, Blu-ray discs, popcorn, gumball machines, shelves “and everything else.”

      • All Family Video Stores Closing

        When is your last day for renting?

        The last day for movie rental was Wednesday, January 6th.

        When is your last day open?

        Stores will close once all items are sold.

      • Roku Tops 50 Million Active Streaming Accounts, Growing 39% in 2020

        According to Roku’s preliminary estimated data, its users watched a cumulative 17 billion streaming hours in Q4 of 2020 for a total of 58.7 billion hours in 2020, a year-over-year increase of 55% for both the quarter and the full year. Roku expects to report Q4 2020 financial results sometime in February.

        The 51.2 million accounts at year-end represent a pickup of about 5.2 million from Q3, marking Roku’s biggest quarterly user growth to date. Q4 is seasonally the company’s largest quarter for revenue and user additions.

    • Monopolies

      • Russell Coker: Monopoly the Game

        The main point about Monopoly teaching about the problems of inequality is one I was already aware of, but there are some aspects of the history that I learned from the article.

        [...]

        While Monopoly can be instructive it’s based on the economic circumstances of the past. The vast majority of rich people aren’t rich from land ownership.

      • Patents

        • Bosch Jehle wins for Rembrandt Messaging against Apple in Germany

          In parallel to the infringement proceedings, Apple Retail Germany filed a successful nullity suit. In January 2018, the Federal Patent Court nullified in full the granted patent. The first instance court also rejected Rembrandt’s auxiliary request, which contained an additional feature, on the grounds that the request was inadmissibly extended.

          Rembrandt Messaging also appealed against this ruling, resulting in the Federal Court of Justice allowing the auxiliary request. The court acknowledged the novelty and inventive step of the additional feature. Thus, the 10th Civil Senate upheld the patent in limited form. However, the court has substantially reduced the scope of protection.

          Now the appeal proceedings pending in the infringement dispute before the Higher Regional Court Düsseldorf can resume (case ID: I-15 U 18/17). The court had suspended proceedings until a decision on the patent’s validity was made.

        • Horizon Pharma, Inc. v. Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories Inc. (Fed. Cir. 2021)

          Indefiniteness under U.S. patent law is a failure to satisfy the statutory requirements of 35 U.S.C. § 112(b), which reads: “The specification shall conclude with one or more claims particularly pointing out and distinctly claiming the subject matter which the inventor or a joint inventor regards as the invention” (emphasis added). The meaning of the statute was most recently explicated by the Supreme Court in Nautilus, Inc. v. Biosig Instruments, Inc., 572 U.S. 898, 910 (2014), which established the standard that the inherent imprecision of language cannot create “ambiguity . . . so great that it creates a ‘zone of uncertainty’ around the patent claims.” In practice, this led the Court to require “reasonable certainty” in claim language, a standard the patent claims at issue failed to satisfy in the Federal Circuit’s recent decision in Horizon Pharma, Inc. v. Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories Inc.

          [...]

          While relying expressly on the Supreme Court’s Nautilus opinion, the Federal Circuit also opined that “[o]ne circumstance in which claims are indefinite is where the claims, as properly construed, are nonsensical,” citing Trs. of Columbia Univ. v. Symantec Corp., 811 F.3d 1359, 1366–67 (Fed. Cir. 2016). In upholding the District Court’s construction, and finding of indefiniteness, the panel asserted that “the ‘target’ clauses of claim 1 render the claim indefinite because ‘[t]he fact that a goal is clearly defined does not mean that the act of targeting that goal is clearly defined, and this is the crux of the definiteness problem here.’” Simply put (as the District Court had) “a dose form, which is an inanimate object, cannot set a goal.”

          After agreeing with the District Court that a dispute between experts does not raise a genuine issue of material fact that would preclude summary judgment, the panel affirmed the construction and the District Court’s decision that the claims were indefinite and consequently invalid.

        • Moot on Appeal: Patentee’s Infringement Disclaimer Remove’s Challenger’s Ability to Appeal IPR

          In a split opinion, the Federal Circuit has dismissed ABS Global’s appeal of its failed IPR trial — finding the appeal moot. U.S. Patent No. 8,529,161.

          The simple story here is that Cytonome sued ABS for infringement of the ‘161 patent but lost on summary judgment of non-infringement. ABS did not pursue an appeal, and expressly “disclaim[ed] such an appeal.”

          Meanwhile ABS had filed an Inter Partes Review proceeding that resulted in most of the claims being cancelled. The PTAB did side with the patentee on two of the claims — finding that they had not been proven obvious. ABS wanted all of the claims invalidated and so appealed to the Federal Circuit.

          Appellant must have Standing to Appeal: Although the Patent Act provides a right to appeal to all parties of an IPR, the Federal Circuit also requires standing — a “concrete” and “particularized” harm associated with the patent’s existence — an actual case or controversy. This is akin to ordinary declaratory judgment jurisdiction, but a bit lighter because of participation in the PTAB trial and the express statutory right. Mootness is also wrapped-up in the standing discussion. A court has no jurisdiction over a moot controversy.

      • Trademarks


        • New Year, New IP Law – Protect Lawful Streaming Act, CASE Act, and Trademark Modernization Act

          As the United States prepares to begin the first session of the 117th Congress on January 3rd, 2021, the present legislature finished their terms by coalescing several bills into one larger act. This became the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021, or H.R. 133, which included two intellectual property bills – Copyright Small Claims (pg 2544) and Trademark Modernization (pg 2606). The bill was amended to include a third, the Protect Lawful Streaming Act (pg 2539), before it was signed into law last week. To round out 2020, let’s explore the new IP law that the US has to look forward to in 2021.

          [...]

          These changes to US trademark and copyright law have been in the works for some time. Considering trends with Napster and Aereo, the criminalization of running an infringing streaming service was hardly unexpected for this Kat. The CASE Act has been in the works for several years, with this 116th Congress making substantial progress in 2019 to reach this point. The Trademark Modernization Act reflects a trend of increasing scrutiny over the trademark register, particularly following last year’s rule change to require US licensed attorneys for foreign applicants and registrants. With the 116th headed into the history book, this Kat is excited to see what the 117th Congress has in store for the IP world.

      • Copyrights

        • UK Music Rights Group Demands Payment From A Pub That Isn’t Playing Any Music Because It’s Closed Due To COVID

          It’s been a while since we last wrote about PRS for Music, the UK music collection group that is somewhat infamous for its overly aggressive demands for payment from anyone playing music anywhere in the UK. There was the children’s charity that was ordered to pay royalties for singing Christmas carols. There was the auto mechanic who was told they needed to pay up because the mechanics in the garage had a radio on loud enough that customers inside the waiting area could hear and enjoy the music. There was the horse owner, who realized that her horses were calmer when classical music was playing, and PRS declared this was a public performance and demanded she pay up. Or how about the grocery store that PRS said needed to pay up because a staff member was singing while stocking the shelves? PRS is nothing but a shakedown business. It came out that its “investigators” are actually considered to be salespeople inside the organization — meaning they have revenue targets to meet. In other words, they’ll look for anything to demand a license. Indeed, another report we had pointed out that they would call random small businesses and demand payment if they heard any music in the background.

        • Neil Young Becomes Latest Artist to Sell Stake in His Songs

          In an industry where music sales have dwindled and the concert industry is on hold due to the coronavirus pandemic, song publishing is seen as an increasingly valuable asset. The companies generally push for use of an artist’s songs in movies, video games and advertising.

          The latter use has been a sticking point for Young, whose 1988 song “This Note’s For You” sharply criticized artists who leased their music for advertising campaigns. The accompanying video parodied ads that featured Michael Jackson and Eric Clapton.

          In the song, Young sang: “Ain’t singin’ for Pepsi, ain’t singin’ for Coke. I don’t sing for nobody. Makes me look like a joke.”

        • Company Demands $10K to Retract Facebook Copyright Claim on 20-sec Chinchilla Clip

          Comedian “Ozzy Man Reviews” kicked off the new year with an entertaining video compilation of relaxing animals. However, because he included an unlicenced 20-second clip of a chilling chinchilla, things spiraled out of control. A rightsholder of the clip asked Facebook to remove the video, demanding $10,000 from the comedian to restore it.

        • Pirate IPTV Community Raises The Alarm Over Hacks and Extortion

          IPTV providers and sellers are again being hacked by an unknown individual demanding ransoms payable in bitcoin. However, it now appears that paying off the hacker doesn’t always settle the matter. Even more interesting is that fingers are being pointed towards someone potentially ‘involved’ with a company that offers software solutions, a claim the company itself denies.

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