02.08.21

Links 8/2/2021: digiKam 7.2.0 RC and Kdenlive 20.12.2

Posted in News Roundup at 4:26 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Where Will the Penguin March From Here?

      One of Linux’s greatest and most distinguishing traits is its adaptability. Compare how it started and how it’s going, and you’ll see what I mean.

      Linux began its life as a humble experiment in Unix porting, but from there it quickly became a popular kernel for server OSes due to its low cost (“free” is pretty low) and customizability. From there it morphed to power network appliances (think routers) and Android, proving it was lean enough for a whole gamut of embedded systems.

      It’s easy to forget that Linux’s proliferation to every class of computing device has not concluded its evolution. With that in mind, I want to take a moment to not only catch up with its changes, but to potentially get ahead of them.

      Don’t take this as gospel truth, though. This is just me expanding on an intuition I had while studying technology trends. Plus, the beginning of the year has me, like many people, in a prognosticatory mood.

    • Rescatux 0.73: Rescuing GNU/Linux and Microsoft Systems with Rescapp

      According to the Distrowatch summary “Rescatux is a Debian-based GNU/Linux live distribution that includes a graphical wizard for rescuing broken GNU/Linux installations.” It features a graphical interface where one can choose a task to perform, including the option to restore the GRUB bootloader, Linux and Windows password resets, and Linux file system checks. Being based on Debian (Stable) it is using the Linux kernel 4.19.0-8 and systemd in the background. Right off the bat this could be a problem for machines needing a newer kernel but it was ok for my hardware, the newest machine now being around 20 months old.

      Rescatux booted into UEFI mode on this Asus Vivobook 8th Gen Core i7. The iwlwifi firmware was missing and as such I was unable to get online in the live session.

      At start up the initial boot screen is already very informative, letting us know a number of options and the version numbers of system tools.

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • 3 open source tools that make Linux the ideal workstation

        In 2021, there are more reasons why people love Linux than ever before. In this series, I’ll share 21 different reasons to use Linux. Today, I’ll share with you why Linux is a great choice for your workday.

        Everyone wants to be productive during the workday. If your workday generally involves working on documents, presentations, and spreadsheets, then you might be accustomed to a specific routine. The problem is that usual routine is usually dictated by one or two specific applications, whether it’s a certain office suite or a desktop OS. Of course, just because something’s a habit doesn’t mean it’s ideal, and yet it tends to persist unquestioned, even to the point of influencing the very structure of how a business is run.

    • Server

      • Hybrid cloud – everything you need to know

        Hybrid cloud allows businesses to optimise their costs associated with cloud infrastructure maintenance. It also brings many other benefits, such as business continuity, compliance, better scalability and improved agility.

        According to the Forrester Wave: Hybrid Cloud Management, Q4 2020, hybrid cloud is an essential technology that every modern organisation is looking for and its adoption is only expected to grow in the following years.

        In this blog, we cover everything you need to know about hybrid clouds.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

    • Kernel Space

      • Kernel prepatch 5.11-rc7

        The 5.11-rc7 kernel prepatch is out for testing. “Anyway, this is hopefully the last rc for this release, unless some surprise comes along and makes a travesty of our carefully laid plans. It happens. Nothing hugely scary stands out, with the biggest single part of the patch being some new self-tests. In fact, about a quarter of the patch is documentation and selftests.”

      • Linux 5.11 could arrive next week, as Linus Torvalds slams the Superbowl [Ed: TechRadar is, as usual, turning technical news into clickbait]

        As he announced the latest update of the Linux 5.11 release, Linus Torvalds, the head-honcho of the Linux kernel, took a swipe at the Superbowl.

      • Linux 5.10.14
        I'm announcing the release of the 5.10.14 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
        
      • inux 5.4.96
      • Linux 4.19.174
      • Linux 4.14.220
    • Benchmarks

      • AMD Radeon RX 6800 vs. NVIDIA RTX 30 Linux Performance Heating Up

        Given the open-source Radeon driver progress for RDNA2 over the past three months since the Radeon RX 6800 series were launched, here is a look at how the Radeon RX 6800 series and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 30 series is currently competing on Linux when using the latest Linux drivers from the respective vendors.

        Today’s article offers a fresh comparison at how the latest AMD Radeon and NVIDIA GeForce graphics cards are competing on Linux for various gaming and Vulkan compute benchmarks when using the very latest graphics drivers. This round of tests was conducted on an AMD Ryzen 9 5950X system with the ASUS CROSSHAIR VIII HERO WiFi motherboard (3202 BIOS), 2 x 16GB DDR4-3600 Corsair memory, 2TB Corsair Fore MP600 NVMe solid-state drive, and the various graphics cards under test. Ubuntu 20.10 was running on this AMD Ryzen 9 5950X system while was modified with the noted driver modifications/updates.

    • Applications

      • Linux’s Favorite Screenshot Tool Shutter Sees First Major Release in Years

        There are plenty of screenshot tools available for Linux. Shutter has been my all-time favorite.

        The funny thing is that I hardly use it for taking screenshots, rather I edit the screenshots with Shutter to add arrows, triangles and annotate them. Most screenshots you see in the tutorials on It’s FOSS are edited with Shutter.

        For the past several years, the development of Shutter stalled. There were no new releases and the existing version had dependency on the old libraries versions that are not available in newer distribution versions. For this reason, you had to make special efforts for enabling edit mode Shutter on Linux.

      • Bulk URL Opener – manage and use large numbers of URLs

        Bulk URL Opener is an application that provides the user with multiple utilities to help with managing and using large amounts of URLs. The software lets you open a list of URLs with a single link.

        The program also lets you create and store lists of links that are available from a dropdown menu offering an easy ay to open multiple links simultaneously.

        Bulk URL Opener is free and open source software. It’s an Electron based application written in the JavaScript programming language.

        [...]

        Bulk URL Opener has limited use cases as a desktop application. But if you need to open multiple urls on a regular basis, the program may be useful.

        The program doesn’t warrant our recommendation. It’s fairly slow in operation with stability leaving something to be desired. There’s a fair few glitches and issues we run into even from limited testing.

        Memory usage is high which is mainly because the program uses Electron. ps_mem reports that the desktop program uses around 276MB of RAM. That’s a hefty memory footprint, particularly given the program is essentially very simple. There’s definitely a call for the project to move away from Electron.

        ps_mem is a small utility that reliably reports how much memory is consumed by an application. It’s a very handy open source utility. It interrogates the kernel to obtain the memory information, outputting the information in a clean and uncluttered way.

      • Viper Browser: A Lightweight Qt5-based Web Browser With A Focus on Privacy and Minimalism

        Viper Browser is a Qt-based browser that offers a simple user experience keeping privacy in mind.

        While the majority of the popular browsers run on top of Chromium, unique alternatives like Firefox, Beaker Browser, and some other chrome alternatives should not cease to exist.

        Especially, considering Google’s recent potential thought of stripping Google Chrome-specific features from Chromium giving an excuse of abuse.

        In the look-out for more Chrome alternatives, I came across an interesting project “Viper Browser” as per our reader’s suggestion on Mastodon.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • How to set a system wide bandwidth limit on Linux systems

        In these times of remote work / home office, you may have a limited bandwidth shared with other people/device. All software doesn’t provide a way to limit bandwidth usage (package manager, Youtube videos player etc…).

        Fortunately, Linux has a very nice program very easy to use to limit your bandwidth in one command. This program is « Wondershaper » and is using the Linux QoS framework that is usually manipulated with “tc”, but it makes it VERY easy to set limits.

      • How to Allow Remote Connections to MySQL – TecAdmin

        Which is also a good practice for the security purposes.

        In many cases we needs to access MySQL database from remote systems. In the most possible cases of production environment where we use separate instance for database server. Also in case of application hosted under load balance environment, where we create a single centralize database server accessible from multiple systems.

        This tutorial will help you to configure MySQL server to allow connections from remote systems.

      • How to Jailbreak Roku and Install Kodi (Full Tutorial)

        Love the convenience of Roku, but addicted to the sheer streaming power of Kodi? Well today, we show you how to combine the two–and it doesn’t actually even require jailbreaking! Don’t worry, it’s actually a pretty simple process–we walk you through it, step by step, sharing a few tips along the way on how to get the most out of both services.

      • How to install and set-up a gemini server
      • How to Install Kodi on Amazon Fire TV Stick, The Verified Easy Way

        Amazon’s Firestick offers unparalleled convenience, but it’s best paired with Kodi for the ultimate streaming experience. We show you how to install Kodi on Fire TV step by step, and recommend a few VPNs to help you access geoblocked content and hide your Kodi traffic from ISP throttling.

      • How To Install Gitea on Linux Mint 20 – idroot

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Gitea on Linux Mint 20. For those of you who didn’t know, Gitea is a simple, lightweight, and self-hosted Git platform written in Go. It is a fork of Gogs and very similar to GitLab. Compared to GitLab, Gitea is extra easy, light-weight, and straightforward to configure. It can be installed on all major operating systems including, Windows, macOS, Linux, and ARM. With Gitea, you can track time, issues, repository branching, file locking, merging, and many more.

        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 the Gitea on a Linux Mint 20 (Ulyana).

      • How to Add and Remove Users in CentOS 8

        Adding and deleting users is one of the basic tasks that every system administrator should know. In this tutorial, I am showing you two ways to add and remove users in CentOS 8 on the shell and also on the Desktop.

      • How to Enable HTTP/2 with Apache in Ubuntu – Cloudbooklet

        How to configure or enable or setup HTTP/2 with Apache in Ubuntu. HTTP/2 is a protocol developed to reduce latency, minimize protocol overhead and many more efficient features compared to HTTP/1.

        In this guide you are going to learn how to enable HTTP/2 with Apache. This setup is tested on a Google cloud compute engine instance with Ubuntu 20.20 OS and Apache 2.4.41.

      • How to Install Deepin WeChat, QQ IM in Ubuntu 20.04 [The Easy Way] | UbuntuHandbook

        This simple tutorial shows how to install WeChat, QQ instant messenger, Ali Wangwang, QQ Music, QQ Video, iQIYI easily from Deepin repository.

        For those doing business or having friends / family members in China, it’s hard to avoid using these top apps. Thanks to wine and Deepin Linux, they are working quite good in Linux without native support.

      • How to Install NFS Server on Debian 10 (Buster)

        NFS (Network File system) is a client-server file system protocol which allows multiple system or user to access the same shared folder or file. The latest is NFS version 4. The shared file will be like if they were stored locally. It provides central management which can be secured with a firewall and Kerberos authentication.

        This article will guide you to install the NFS server in Debian 10 and mount it on a client machine.

      • How to Install NumPy on Ubuntu 20.04

        NumPy is a python library used for scientific computing. It offers the followings and much more.

      • How to Install Vagrant and use it with VirtualBox on Ubuntu 20.04

        Vagrant is a command-line tool for building and managing virtual machines. To use Vagrant, you must have a virtualization engine like VirtualBox, Hyper-V, or Docker installed on your system. The Vagrant plugin system also provides support for KVM and VMware. Vagrant is mainly used to easily set- up development environments. Vagrant is available for Linux platforms and users can install it into their system for further usage.

        In this article, I will show you how to install Vagrant on an Ubuntu 20.04 machine and use VirtualBox as vairtualization engine. The we will create a VirtualBox virtual machine with CentOS 8 as operating system inside the VM using Vagrant.

      • How to Run a Command Periodically in Linux using Watch

        The requirement of periodically running a command or a process in Linux is quite common. From clean up scripts, to duplicate file removal commands, to automated periodic upgrades, everything can be configured to run periodically in Linux.

        Usually, the way to achieve this is to configure Cron jobs, which are handy when it comes to automation scripts and background jobs. However, if you need to run a command or program periodically and view its output interactively, i.e., in (almost) real-time; Cron cannot be used, as it saves all the output to log files.

      • How to install Solus 4.2 – YouTube

        In this video, I am going to show how to install Solus 4.2.

      • How to install and use Flameshot on Linux

        Flameshot is a free and open source Screenshot Tool. It is simple, yet powerful feature-rich ,easy to use. And also, Flameshot has a CLI version, so you can take screenshots from commandline as well.

        In this article,we will show you how to install Flameshot and how to take screenshots using it in Linux.

      • How to mount Box.com cloud storage on Linux

        Box.com is an online cloud storage provider targeting individual users and enterprise customers. This tutorial demonstrates how you can mount your Box.com cloud storage account on Linux via a WebDAV interface.

      • How to set up custom sensors in Home Assistant | Opensource.com

        In the last article in this series about home automation, I started digging into Home Assistant. I set up a Zigbee integration with a Sonoff Zigbee Bridge and installed a few add-ons, including Node-RED, File Editor, Mosquitto broker, and Samba. I wrapped up by walking through Node-RED’s configuration, which I will use heavily later on in this series. The four articles before that one discussed what Home Assistant is, why you may want local control, some of the communication protocols for smart home components, and how to install Home Assistant in a virtual machine (VM) using libvirt.

        In this sixth article, I’ll walk through the YAML configuration files. This is largely unnecessary if you are just using the integrations supported in the user interface (UI). However, there are times, particularly if you are pulling in custom sensor data, where you have to get your hands dirty with the configuration files.

      • Find When A Specific Linux Kernel Version Is Last Booted – OSTechNix

        You should have installed or upgraded to many new Kernel versions over the time in your Linux machine. If you have multiple Linux Kernels installed on your system, how would you find when a specific Linux Kernel version is last booted? That’s what we are going to find out now. This guide explains how to check when a Linux kernel last used or booted on.

      • Getting started with Flutter on Ubuntu

        Recently there was an announcement from Ubuntu that the desktop team are working on a replacement for the Ubiquity installer. The really interesting part of the post by Martin Wimpress, head of the Ubuntu Desktop team at Canonical, is that the new installer will be built using Flutter.

        Flutter is a cross-platform User Interface framework that can target Linux, macOS, Windows, Android, and iOS all from the same source code. I have been aware of Flutter for some time now but have been trepidation in jumping in to sample the water, because I am completely unfamiliar with the Dart programming language and was worried about making the time investment.

        With the news from Ubuntu I decided that now is a good time to get my feet wet and find out what this new shiny is all about. To that end, I have installed Flutter and managed to get the sample application running on Ubuntu!

      • Network configuration in Ubuntu

        This document is intended to support Ubuntu server administrators and aims to help you manage your network using the terminal.

      • How to Connect Your Linux Laptop to an External Monitor (Fix for HDMI “No Signal” Issue)

        have recently replaced my old laptop with a new one that’s also great for gaming, so if I want to connect it to an external monitor via HDMI it doesn’t work out-of-the-box with any Linux distro that I’ve tried so far, and if you search the Web for an answer you’ll find numerous reports from users having a so-called “No Signal” issue.

        I spent many hours reading these reports and the solutions offered by other users, but with no success. So if you’re like me, you’ve arrived at right place. In the next paragraphs, I’m gonna show you how to properly connect your laptop to an external monitor, and the instructions should work on any Linux distro.

      • Essential Pacman Commands for Arch Linux [With Examples]

        The package manager pacman is a very handy utility. You can do a whole lot of things just using some simple commands. Here we take a look at some of the essentials pacman command examples for Arch Linux (and other derivatives such as Manjaro) for your daily use. Have a look.

    • Games

      • Take home 1 of 6 System76 Dream PCs!

        This video is NOT sponsored. When System76 asked me if I would share their Unleash Your Potential Program with you guys, I knew I had to say yes. They’re some of my favorite peeps in the world and, after the success of the GNOME Community Engagement Challenge, I figured you guys might want to know about this awesome program, too!!

      • Drauger OS Developer Looking To Make Console

        Thomas Castleman, the main developer behind Drauger OS, announced yesterday in a blog post that the Drauger OS team is still going strong, with continued improvements to the distro’s system installer and the planned release date for the upcoming Drauger OS 7.6 (June or July). What’s perhaps the most surprising regarding the post, however, is the announcement that they’re working on a Linux gaming console, dubbed the Vetala.

        The Vetala (the name is apparently based from Hindu mythology as someone who has been brought from the dead) will have none other than Drauger OS pre-installed, using a couch-oriented desktop environment called Game Console Desktop Environment (GCDE). It will come in a low-end, mid-range, or a high-end hardware configuration, varying between $600-$1000. It will use off-the-shelf components and have dedicated graphics and Wi-Fi. The case will use ABS plastic.

        CAD files for the casing will be publicly available; if the console breaks, you can 3D print another, or print it anyway if the console doesn’t become a success. The Vetala will also be freely available to customize with your own hardware. The blog post also goes on to mention some work may be done on the kernel “to improve performance and ensure users get the most disk space for their games as possible.”

        [...]

        In other news for Drauger OS, the team is no longer working on an ARM version of the distribution.

      • Comet 64 is a programming puzzle game about an old fictional computer

        Comet 64 huh? It’s a programming puzzle game involving a fantasy old computer and it certainly hits the mark when it comes to the visual style. Fans of the Amiga, Commodore and the real early PCs will find themselves at home here.

        Unlike certain other programming puzzlers, it’s not a game where you’re dragging and dropping logic blocks. Instead, you’re using a simplified programming language to solve the various problems it presents you with. Could serve as a fun introduction to programming or as a healthy dose of nostalgia for problem solvers to dive into with a retro flair.

        [...]

        The developer actually sent us a key for this one, and it really is great. Definitely reminds me of some classic programming attempts a good many years ago. It’s styled a bit like a Zachtronics game almost, which is practically a genre nowadays. It gives you an input of numbers which you need to adjust based on the query you’re given (the query being the problem to solve) for each level using the simple programming language.

      • Factorio to get a big expansion pack now the full game is done, developer jobs going | GamingOnLinux

        Wube Software have written up their plans for the future of Factorio and it sounds exciting, with it confirmed that they’re looking to work on a big expansion.

        Factorio is done, as in the recent 1.1 release is the “final release of the vanilla game” and so will only see standard maintenance patches for bug fixes and alike. The question is where do they take it from here? They went over options like free updates, a sequel and more but settled on doing a big expansion as they’re not a fan of multiple smaller DLC.

        What to expect from it? Too early to tell they say and they have no idea when it will be ready as work has only just begun. We’re looking at likely more than a year.

      • Jupiter Moons: Mecha – Prologue demo offers a shiny test of the next deck-builder hit | GamingOnLinux

        It’s not always clear what will be a hit but sometimes, I honestly think it is and Jupiter Moons: Mecha has early signs of being something a little bit special.

        Deck-builders are popular, lots of games are trying out using cards and building up a deck of abilities and sometimes like with Dicey Dungeons and Slay the Spire they go onto becoming hits. There’s also the upcoming Loop Hero which already has my heart.

        Jupiter Moons: Mecha, well the demo of Jupiter Moons: Mecha – Prologue to be precise, offers up a rather tantalizing early look at what could be another great one. Fusing together mech combat, lots of shininess and plenty of laser action with card-based combat and what you get depends on your currently equipped weapons and tooling.

      • Terraria for Stadia cancelled, due to Google locking the developer out | GamingOnLinux

        Stadia is back on the spotlight and not for their overhype, new games or stopping first-party games, in fact it’s due to Terraria now being cancelled due to Google locking the accounts of a developer. This isn’t just any developer either, this is coming from Terraria developer Andrew Spinks, who is the founder of Re-Logic.

        Spinks wrote a thread on Twitter, highlighting the issue after being locked out of a Google account now for three weeks. That means access has been lost to anything purchased on Google Play, all the data on Google Drive, even the official YouTube account for Terraria cannot be accessed due to all this.

      • Valheim has become the next survival game hit on Steam

        Looks like Iron Gate AB and Coffee Stain Publishing did well, with the survival game Valheim doing fantastic.

        After entering Early Access on February 2, it has repeatedly climbed up the top lists on Steam for players and sales hitting a fresh record of 131,153 online on Sunday February 7. Nothing is ever guaranteed to be a hit but it looks like they managed to find quite the sweet-spot and thankfully this hit has full Linux support, with the main developer even working from Linux.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • The Best Desktop Environments of 2021

        As Linux users, we’re often spoiled for choice when it comes to software. There are some basic programs that we keep coming back to that are so integrated into the stack that we forget they’re even there. However, when it comes to things like Desktop Environments, it can be hard to determine the best option for exactly what you’re going to use it for. I personally have reviewed different Linux Desktop Environments, and there’s a lot of overlap between use cases. Here we show you the best Linux Desktop Environments for your particular use case.

        Note: the following list is not listed in any particular order, and Window Managers are not included.

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • digiKam 7.2.0-rc is released

          Just a few words to inform the community that 7.2.0-rc is out and ready to test six month later the 7.2.0 beta1 release.

          After integrating the student codes working on faces management while this summer, we have stabilized code about the usability and the performances improvements of faces tagging, faces detection, and faces recognition, already presented in July with 7.0.0 release announcement.

          One very important point introduced with this release is the new Online Release Downloader to help users with stable and pre-release updates, fully automatized, providing a release notes, and with the options to use debug or optimized application versions.

        • Kdenlive 20.12.2 available

          Kdenlive 20.12.2, part of our monthly bugfix release, is now available and fixes several important issues. Among the changes…

    • Distributions

      • Best Linux distro – The last decade – 2011-2020

        OK, let’s do it. I’m going to tell you about my top five distros of the past decade. A (very) long view on usability, functional and cultural (so to speak) impact, the value, the quality, the fun I got out of them, how they shaped my usability – and that of others, and a few other interesting tidbits. Nostalgia, forget we must not.

        In a way, the article will be similar to my five-year summary (2016-2020), which I did not that long ago. And of course, you’re likely to see some of the same names invoked. So if you’ve read it once, well apologies for that. All right, we know what the deal is for the latter half of this period, but what about the first five years? If you ask me, those were the interesting years – the peak of the PC, the fun desktop period before the mobile era ruined it all. Moving on, ze list.

      • Reviews

        • Review: Split Linux

          This week I want to talk about an unusual project I tried out recently called Split Linux. The project’s website describes itself as follows:
          Split Linux is a general operating system optimized for safely navigating hostile environments like the Internet and physical check points. Split Linux builds on tools that follow the UNIX philosophy and is based on the fast and independent Void Linux.
          Digging a little deeper we can learn additional bits about Split Linux. The idea of Split is to run two or more operating systems on your computer. The first operating system is installed normally and can be any Linux distribution or other operating system that looks semi-familiar to the public. The first operating system is not used for anything important and is considered the “decoy”.

          We then set up a second volume which will be home to an encrypted volume we will fill with Linux containers. Each container has its own username and password, its own files, and its own programs. Network traffic is routed through the Tor network.

          The computer cannot directly boot into this second partition and the boot menu does not even list it as an option. The second partition with our encrypted containers is not bootable. To access the containers we plug in a USB thumb drive that holds Split Linux. The computer boots off the thumb drive and, if we provide the proper username and password, we are granted access to one of the encrypted containers.

      • New Releases

        • Septor 2021.1

          System upgrade from Debian Bullseye repos as of February 8, 2021

          Update KDE Plasma to 5.20.5
          Update Tor Browser to 10.0.9
          Update Hexchat to 2.14.3-4
          Update Onionshare to 2.2-3
          Update Thunderbird to 78.7.0-1
          Update Sweeper to 20.12.0-1
          Update privoxy to 3.0.31-1
          Update tor to 0.4.5.5-rc-1
          Veracrypt replaces zuluCrypt

      • Gentoo Family

        • Best Gentoo Linux Derivatives

          Getting started with Gentoo requires some knowledge of Linux inner workings. This can be time-consuming and frustrating, especially if you have never done it or you have relied on automated install methods for a long time. With that said, it is worthwhile finding out more about your system. You could find many interesting points that can help your private computing or even your career. Many corporations use the Gentoo base and create an internal distribution. One example is Chromium OS; many others are specialized versions for their needs.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • Fedora Aarch64 on the SolidRun HoneyComb LX2K

          Almost a year has passed since the HoneyComb development kit was released by SolidRun. I remember reading about this Mini-ITX Arm workstation board being released and thinking “what a great idea.” Then I saw the price and realized this isn’t just another Raspberry Pi killer. Currently that price is $750 USD plus shipping and duty. Niche devices like the HoneyComb aren’t mass produced like the simpler Pi is, and they pack in quite a bit of high end tech. Eventually COVID lockdown boredom got the best of me and I put a build together. Adding a case and RAM, the build ended up costing about $1100 shipped to London. This is a recount of my experiences and the current state of using Fedora on this fun bit of hardware.

        • Miroslav Suchý: How to activate no-cost RHEL subscription

          Click on the “Register” button and follow the process. It is one screen only and you will be done within a minute.

          Now navigate to developers.redhat.com and log in using your Red Hat account.

          From the top menu choose Linux -> Download RHEL. That will get you to Download Page. You can download the ISO image. Or you can Set Up AWS EC2 Instance. Or you can use any other way. Your no-cost subscription is already active.

        • Deploying Kubernetes Operators with Operator Lifecycle Manager bundles

          This article shows an example of using the Operator Lifecycle Manager (OLM) bundle deployment architecture to deploy a Red Hat OpenShift or other Kubernetes Operator. You will learn how to use OLM and the Operator SDK (both components of the Kubernetes Operator Framework) together to deploy an Operator.

        • DISA Has Released the Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8 STIG

          Cybersecurity continues to be a focal point for government agencies as they continue to develop IT strategies that include the deployment of new and existing workloads into cloud-based environments. At the same time, threats to these services, and the data that they process, continue to evolve with new exploits appearing on a regular basis. To maintain the performance and availability of applications and data, configurations that limit the ability for exploits to be successful must be in place.

          Red Hat has a long history of working with government and defense agencies to configure Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) to meet certain rigorous requirements that aim to protect systems from malicious activity. This work includes development of SELinux, establishing Identity Management standards, and the development and publication of several security configuration profiles used by various industries.

          We are pleased to announce that, in collaboration with Red Hat, the Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA) has published a Secure Technical Implementation Guide (STIG) for RHEL 8. The STIG consists of more than 300 security controls including configuration settings that map to new features that were included in RHEL 8.

        • IBM Cloud Now: IBM Cloud Schematics Updates, New Billing Model, and 10% Off Bare Metal Servers
        • IBM Advance Toolchain for Linux on Power 14.0-2 released!

          A new update release for the 14.0 series of the IBM® Advance Toolchain for Linux on Power is now available.

          [...]

          The IBM Advance Toolchain for Linux on Power is a set of open source development tools (compiler, debugger and profiling tools) and runtime libraries that allow users to take leading edge advantage of IBM’s latest POWER® hardware features on Linux®.

        • Feeling Insecure About The Weak Security At Most IBM i Shops – IT Jungle [Ed: When the "trade press" indoctrinates people into thinking they must always use products with back doors and then buy some proprietary stuff to "add" security]

          It is always a wonder to us that, in this day and age, every IBM i shop, which is by definition running mission critical workloads, is not using high availability clustering of systems in their datacenter, disaster recovery and failover of some type or another to a remote site, and supplemental security to lock down those parts of the system that are not, by default within the IBM i platform, locked down.

          It’s a bit of a mystery. Of the 120,000 to 150,000 unique customers running IBM i platforms in the world, maybe 20,000 have some sort of HA/DR and maybe 10,000 have supplemental security. We want to understand why, after decades or exit point security as well as security add-ons to cover the Integrated File System, a variant of the OS/2 High Performance File System that IBM brought onto the platform to make it speak ASCII and SMD way back in 1995. We wanted to get a better understanding of the security situation, with somewhere between 6.7 percent and 8.3 percent of the installed base having security add-ons for exit points and IFS, so we had a chat with Tony Perera, co-founder and president of Trinity Guard, who has a long and complex history in the IT sector and who can give us some insight.

          Perera, who is from Sri Lanka, started his career at IBM developing the Employee Trust Fund System for that country, which is akin to the applications that run the Social Security Administration here in the United States. He then went on to be a programmer analyst at United Overseas Bank and at application developer FISERV, including porting a Unix-based banking system to OS/400. In July 1999, Perera joined PentaSafe and was one of the key developers of the set of security products the company had, which were acquired by NetIQ, which was acquired by Attachmate, which was acquired by Novell, which were finally spun put into Micro Focus. Back in the day PentaSafe had three employees and were doing security products for OS/400, but today, Trinity Guard is a 15-person company, with a dozen of them – including Perera – working in programming, QA, product management, and such and only three of them working on sales. Perera has seen security from the side of the customer and from the side of the vendor, and offers some good perspective why security add-ons are not ubiquitous in the IBM i realm, but why they should be.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Why choose Plausible for an open source alternative to Google Analytics

        Taking on the might of Google Analytics may seem like a big challenge. In fact, you could say it doesn’t sound plausible… But that’s exactly what Plausible.io has done with great success, signing up thousands of new users since 2018.

        Plausible’s co-founders Uku Taht and Marko Saric recently appeared on The Craft of Open Source podcast to talk about the project and how they…

      • Events

        • FOSDEM 2021 was the best online event ever

          My family got used to the fact that I am not available at beginning of February. Because of my FOSDEM trip. This year was not both not so different and different at same time.

          Due to COVID-19 pandemic FOSDEM 2021 was online. So there was no reason for any trip other than to local shops to buy some Belgian beers. And I was not available to anyone during weekend.

          [...]

          One of things FOSDEM is famous for is networking at event. And live streaming of all rooms. This year was no different. My monitor’s screen was split to two Firefox windows: left side kept discussions on Matrix server, right side had live streaming schedule and video of currently attended talk. At same time my phone has “FOSDEM Companion” app started with bookmarks opened to make it easy to check which talks I wanted to see.

          At some moments I had two videos started — one waited for start of presentation and second with some other talk running. Once new one started I closed watched one. Simple method of watching part of talk to see is it interesting or not.

          There were some talks where I dropped during first few minutes and moved to other one. Something quite hard to do when you are in a middle of a room at normal FOSDEM.

          Videos of talks will be available during next few days. I have a page with FOSDEM talks with slides/video links which will get updates during next days.

      • Web Browsers

        • Mozilla

          • Mozilla Welcomes the Rust Foundation

            Today Mozilla is thrilled to join the Rust community in announcing the formation of the Rust Foundation. The Rust Foundation will be the home of the popular Rust programming language that began within Mozilla. Rust has long been bigger than just a Mozilla project and today’s announcement is the culmination of many years of community building and collaboration. Mozilla is pleased to be a founding Platinum Sponsor of the Rust Foundation and looks forward to working with it to help Rust continue to grow and prosper.

            Rust is an open-source programming language focused on safety, speed and concurrency. It started life as a side project in Mozilla Research. Back in 2010, Graydon Hoare presented work on something he hoped would become a “slightly less annoying” programming language that could deliver better memory safety and more concurrency. Within a few years, Rust had grown into a project with an independent governance structure and contributions from inside and outside Mozilla. In 2015, the Rust project announced the first stable release, Rust 1.0.

          • New Release: Tor Browser 10.5a10 (Windows Only)

            Tor Browser 10.5a10 is now available from the Tor Browser Alpha download page and also from our distribution directory.

            Note: This is an alpha release, an experimental version for users who want to help us test new features. For everyone else, we recommend downloading the latest stable release instead.

          • New Release: Tor Browser 10.0.11 (Windows Only)

            Tor Browser 10.0.11 is now available from the Tor Browser download page and also from our distribution directory.

            This version updates Firefox to 78.7.1esr for Windows. This release includes important security updates to Firefox.

          • New Release: Tor Browser 10.5a9 (Android Only)

            Tor Browser 10.5a9 is now available from the Tor Browser Alpha download page and also from our distribution directory.

            Note: This is an alpha release, an experimental version for users who want to help us test new features. For everyone else, we recommend downloading the latest stable release for Android instead.

      • Programming/Development

        • How to overcome today’s development challenges for mobile and smart devices with Qt and Felgo

          Qt makes it easy to develop applications for Desktop, Mobile and Embedded platforms, all from a single code base. No other solution offers to build native cross-platform apps for all these platforms at once. But since the rise of mobile and smart devices in all kinds of shapes and sizes, bridging the gap between platforms has become even harder. By solving a lot of common problems in many real-life projects, Felgo built a variety of higher-level APIs and development tools on top of Qt that help you save time and worries. Read on to learn how to overcome these challenges from the development to the release.

        • Perl/Raku

          • Perl Weekly Challenge 98: Read N-Characters and Search Insert Position

            These are some answers to the Week 98 of the Perl Weekly Challenge organized by Mohammad S. Anwar.

          • You can now use the spvmcc command to generate an executable file from the SPVM source code.

            You can now use the spvmcc command to generate an executable file from the SPVM source code.

            SPVM is a module that can convert Perl-like source code into C language and execute it.

            I have succeeded in generating an executable in a very stable way.

          • Rakudo Weekly News: 2021.06 Collect, Conserve, Remaster

            Elizabeth Mattijsen has started the Raku Collect, Conserve, Remaster Project to collect old blog posts from the 20+ year history of Raku, into a repository with the goal of preserving all of the information in these blog posts (many of which have already disappeared from the directly accessible internet). If you know of old blog posts (possibly your own), please create a PR to have them added to the Collect phase of the CCR project. The preliminary results are Remastered blog posts in markdown format, that can be rendered at a later stage to provide more up-to-date Raku content on the Internet (/r/rakulang comments).

        • Python

          • Regularization Techniques in Linear Regression With Python

            Linear Regression is the process of fitting a line that best describes a set of data points.

            Let’s say you are trying to predict the Grade $g$ of students, based on how many hours $h$ they spend playing CSGO, and their IQ scores $i$.

          • How to Resize Images Using Python

            Python has become the go-to choice for a programming language; not only for general object-oriented programming but for various scientific, mathematical, statistical, etc. applications.

            All this has been possible due to a strong developer community that has developed libraries and APIs for every purpose, in Python. From machine learning to medicine, it has libraries for all sectors.

  • Leftovers

    • Science

      • Orac on Thinking Critically

        Today Orac is using his prerogative as founder, owner, and sole blogger for Respectful Insolence to engage in a little shameless self-promotion. Not long ago, he was interviewed by Jonathan Maloney for the Thinking Critically podcast. Basically, Orac and Jonathan discussed the sorts of topics Orac regularly discusses here all the time, including the antivaccine movement, COVID-19, and Orac’s journey to skepticism, lo, these more than two decades ago. Here’s the podcast link, and here’s the episode on YouTube:

    • Education

    • Health/Nutrition

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Vivaldi browser gets new feature to help manage tabs

          Norway-based Vivaldi Technologies has added a novel feature to its browser – a second level in the tab bar for managing tab groups, what it calls Two-Level Tab Stacks.

        • Pseudo-Open Source

          • Privatisation/Privateering

            • Linux Foundation

              • How to get started with an Open Source Program Office – Linux.com

                Today every company has to be a software company to be functional in today’s world and open source has become the preferred model for software development. However, many companies still don’t know how to properly engage with the open source communities and code-base. Lack of any strategy towards open source not only keeps companies from taking full advantage of Open Source, it also exposes their own IP or code-base to many risks, including the violation of Open Source license. Every company that deals with Open Source should have an Open Source Program Office. However, there is no playbook to create one. The Linux Foundation Training & Certification has released a new seven-course, training series entitled “Open Source Management & Strategy”. The course is authored by seasoned Open Source leader Guy Martin, Executive Director of OASIS Open, an internationally recognized standards development and open source projects consortium.

        • Security

          • Security updates for Monday

            Security updates have been issued by Debian (chromium, gdisk, intel-microcode, privoxy, and wireshark), Fedora (mingw-binutils, mingw-jasper, mingw-SDL2, php, python-pygments, python3.10, wireshark, wpa_supplicant, and zeromq), Mageia (gdisk and tomcat), openSUSE (chromium, cups, kernel, nextcloud, openvswitch, RT kernel, and rubygem-nokogiri), SUSE (nutch-core), and Ubuntu (openldap, php-pear, and qemu).

          • Ex-NSA man Aitel again clashes with NYT over cyber attack article

            Former NSA hacker and ex-owner of security company Immunity, Dave Aitel, has once again criticised New York Times’ cyber security reporter Nicole Perlroth, claiming that nearly every detail in a piece the journalist wrote to promote an upcoming book of hers is wrong.

          • Critical Cisco Flaws Open VPN Routers Up to RCE Attacks

            Cisco is rolling out fixes for critical holes in its lineup of small-business VPN routers. The flaws could be exploited by unauthenticated, remote attackers to view or tamper with data, and perform other unauthorized actions on the routers.

            The flaws exist in the web-based management interface of Cisco’s small-business lineup of VPN routers. That includes its RV160, RV160W, RV260, RV260P, and RV260W models.

          • How the United States Lost to [Crackers] [iophk: Windows TCO]

            We know this not because of some heroic N.S.A. [crack], or intelligence feat, but because the government was tipped off by a security company, FireEye, after it discovered the same Russian [crackers] in its own systems.

          • CrowdSec: An Innovative Open-Source Massively Multiplayer Firewall for Linux

            CrowdSec is a massively multiplayer firewall designed to protect Linux servers, services, containers, or virtual machines exposed on the Internet with a server-side agent. It was inspired by Fail2Ban and aims to be a modernized, collaborative version of that intrusion-prevention tool.

          • Google Warns of Chrome Zero-Day on Windows, Mac, and Linux

            Google says new updates of its Chrome browser have a zero-day vulnerability that threat actors are actively exploiting. Specifically, the flaw is found in current versions of Google Chrome. This release covers Windows, Mac, and Linux versions of Chrome meaning all are at risk.

            According to the company, there is a flaw in the V8 open-source web engine that runs Chrome. A patch has already been included in version 88.0.4234.150, which is rolling out over the coming days and weeks.

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • TikTok Plans U.S. E-Commerce Push to Take on Facebook: FT

              TikTok is planning an aggressive expansion into e-commerce in the U.S., the Financial Times reported, citing people who have seen the social media app’s plans for new features it will introduce this year.

              Among those features is a tool that allows TikTok’s most popular users to share links to products and automatically earn commissions on sales. TikTok is also rolling out “live-streamed” shopping, a mobile phone version of television shopping channels, where users can buy goods with a few taps. It’s also seeking to let brands show their catalogs, according to the report.

            • Police in Minneapolis reportedly used a geofence warrant at Floyd protest last year

              The search warrant required Google to provide account data for anyone “within the geographical region” of an AutoZone store on May 27th, 2020, to police, according to TechCrunch. Photos of a protest outside that store two days after Floyd’s death showed a man in a mask smashing the store windows with an umbrella. The Minneapolis Star Tribune reported at the time that police believed the so-called “Umbrella Man” was actually a white supremacist trying to spark violence at the protest.

    • Defence/Aggression

      • Biden reduces US role in Saudi war on Yemen, but leaves room to continue crisis
      • Opinion | Biden to Lift the Wrongheaded Houthi Terrorist Designation—But What’s Next?

        Having reversed the worst of Trump’s policies, Biden must now tackle those of the Obama administration.

      • ‘We Want Democracy!’: Despite Internet Blackout, Tens of Thousands Protest Military Coup in Myanmar

        “The Myanmar military has engaged in a naked power grab that if not reversed will set back democracy and the protection of human rights for a generation,” warned one human rights advocate.

      • The Nashville Bombing, More Than Meets the Eye

        I know what I write about. In the 1980s, I was an editor at Loompanics Unlimited, publishers of controversial and unusual books, sellers of such titles as The Anarchist Cookbook, Kitchen Improvised Plastic Explosives, and Homemade Guns and Homemade Ammo. We published books on making bombs, modifying guns, and causing mayhem. The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution says words cannot be prohibited, only actions.

        The idea that one person can pack that much explosive power into an old recreational vehicle and drive it into position without blowing himself up along the way is stunning. None of the books I’ve worked on have ever hinted at this sort of explosive power commanded by a single individual. This is a quantum leap in the deadliness of a lone wolf.

      • The Anatomy of Fascism Denial

        In truth, the doubts should never have existed in the first place. In May of 2016, seven months before Trump’s election, the liberal New Yorker commentator Adam Gopnik calmly observed the following:

        “There is a simple formula for descriptions of Donald Trump: add together a qualification, a hyphen, and the word ‘fascist’ …his personality and his program belong exclusively to the same dark strain of modern politics: an incoherent program of national revenge led by a strongman; a contempt for parliamentary government and procedures; an insistence that the existing, democratically elected government…is in league with evil outsiders and has been secretly trying to undermine the nation; a hysterical militarism designed to no particular end other than the sheer spectacle of strength; an equally hysterical sense of beleaguerment and victimization; and a supposed suspicion of big capitalism entirely reconciled to the worship of wealth and ‘success.’”

      • The New Humanitarian | Floods, fighting, famine: South Sudan’s triple crisis

        Tucked away behind the bend of a swollen river, an hour and a half by motorboat from the region’s main health centre, local residents in the remote South Sudanese village of Lekuangole say their children are starving to death.
        There’s the three-year-old son of Ngalan Luryen who died of hunger last February after a week hiding in a forest from militiamen. And there’s the nine-year-old grandson of Anna Korok who lost his life in July when conflict split him from his family and left him nothing to eat.
        “We need food,” Korok told The New Humanitarian during a trip to the village in December. “So children don’t die.”

    • Transparency/Investigative Reporting

      • RE: Freedom of Information Act/Privacy Act Appeal from FBI FOIPA Request No. 1487229-000

        The FBI’s “no record” response to my FOIA/Privacy Act request is inadequate under FOIA. My request was made after an FBI agent in the Lost Angeles Field Office contacted me on January 12, 2021 concerning a blog post I published in July 2020.2 The FBI agent later confirmed that this blog post was protected First Amendment activity. As detailed in the request, I sought records documenting or reflecting the FBI’s interest in my blog post, the communications and other actions taken by the FBI agent who contacted me, and any other records about me.

        Given that I was directly contacted by an FBI agent, the Bureau’s “no records” response defies reason. [...]

    • Environment

      • Hawaii’s Beaches Are Disappearing. New Legislation Could Help … if It’s Enforced.

        Hawaii lawmakers are considering bills this legislative session that could force oceanfront property owners to remove sandbags and draped heavy tarps that can significantly contribute to coastal erosion. Dozens of owners along Hawaii beaches have used loopholes in current environmental laws to leave emergency armoring in place for extended periods in order to protect homes, hotels and condos. Under the new legislation, they would face strict deadlines for removing them and higher penalties for installing them without permission.

        Property owners are legally only allowed to keep the emergency protections in place temporarily, but officials with Hawaii’s Department of Land and Natural Resources have liberally interpreted the term “temporary,” allowing walls of sandbags to remain in front of some properties for years, and even decades, after issuing repeated approvals or losing track of them, an investigation in December by the Honolulu Star-Advertiser and ProPublica found.

      • The New Environmentalism Must Demand Systemic Change
      • Energy

        • South Australia trial to use solar for off-peak water heating

          The Federal Government says it will provide $1.98 million to Solahart, a subsidiary of Rheem Australia, to partly fund a trial to test 2400 hot water systems in South Australia with a view to reduce the energy use for heating water at peak times.

      • Wildlife/Nature

    • Finance

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • A Year On, Wuhan Victims Are Still Scarred and Still Censored

        The pressure of being a doctor escalated phenomenally during the pandemic. Sun lived in his office from late January to mid-February, sleeping on a camp bed, and was overwhelmed by mental and physical stress. He wanted to save lives, and he also wanted to disclose the truth, so that the rest of the world could learn and do better. The death of Li inspired him to become a whistleblower, to report incidents of negligence in handling the COVID-19 outbreak to a number of Chinese media outlets, different government officials, and China’s State Council. However, the dossiers he sent to reporters were never published; instead, hospital leaders tried to convince him to focus on his academic research instead of fighting against the government.

        His family and friends never understood why he would endanger his promising career and risk being detained. He eventually stopped trying—but found it hard to reckon with his own conscience. For months, he drowned in his self-loathing, until he came to accept his own, as he saw it, failings.

      • China Cracks Down on Site Offering Uncensored Foreign Media to Users

        Police in Shanghai have raided a popular video-sharing site that offered foreign films and TV shows to more than eight million registered users, cutting off a key source of uncensored content for Chinese viewers.

        Police detained 14 people in a Feb. 3 raid on the offices of the Renren Yingshi video-sharing app and website, on suspicion of copyright piracy linked to more than 20,000 Chinese and foreign-made movies and TV shows.

        Suspects were detained in the eastern province of Shandong, the central province of Hubei and the southwestern region of Guangxi, ruling Chinese Communist Party (CCP) newspaper the People’s Daily reported.

      • Democrats’ New Section 230 Bill Could ‘Devastate’ the Internet, Experts Say

        Eric Goldman, a professor at Santa Clara University Law School, said that rather than carefully targeting one area of the law for change, the SAFE TECH Act tries to “stitch together” an array of “unrelated policy ideas that expose the drafters’ lack of clear understanding of how Section 230 actually works.”

        “My question for the drafters is: what services do they think will still qualify for Section 230 if this reform goes through; how likely is it that those services will do what the members of Congress want; and will those services be able to afford to remain in business?” Goldman said. Without clear and convincing answers to those questions, he added, the bill only serves to create “potentially dire consequences for the Internet we know and love.”

        Many of these imaginable consequences would ultimately depend on how the changes to Section 230 are interpreted by the courts. The bill’s text could also be fundamentally altered in committee or in the House prior to receiving a vote.

      • Munawar Faruqui: Bail for jailed India comic who did not crack a joke

        Munawar Faruqui, 30, was arrested on 1 January in the central Indian city of Indore just as one of his shows ended.

        He is accused of “insulting” Hindu religious sentiments in jokes that he had allegedly prepared, although they did not appear in his set that night.

        The Muslim comedian is among many who have recently been accused under a law that protects religious beliefs.

      • Munawar Faruqui released on bail after late-night call from top court judge

        In a late-night development, comedian Munawar Faruqui was released from Indore jail on Saturday after the Chief Judicial Magistrate of Indore received a “call from a judge of the Supreme Court”, urging them to check the website for the apex court’s order that had put a stay on Munawar’s production warrant and granted him ad-interim bail.

        Earlier in the day, Indore jail authorities had refused to release Faruqui saying they had not received official communication from Chief Judicial Magistrate (CJM) Prayagraj, staying its earlier issued production warrant.

      • “Full Faith In Judiciary”: Comic Munawar Faruqui Walks Out Of Indore Jail

        Stand-up comedian Munawar Faruqui was released on Sunday from a jail in Madhya Pradesh, where he was held for more than a month after his alleged “filthy and indecent jokes” about Hindu Gods and Goddesses, as well as Home Minister Amit Shah. Hours before he was released, the authorities of Indore jail, where he was held, said they were yet to receive any order from the Supreme Court.

      • Wikimedia Adopts Universal Code of Conduct

        The Wikimedia Foundation, the nonprofit body that administers Wikipedia, has announced a Universal Code of Conduct (UCOC), which outlines guidelines for behavior within Wikimedia projects.

        “Our new universal code of conduct creates binding standards to elevate conduct on the Wikimedia projects and empower our communities to address harassment and negative behavior across the Wikimedia movement,” said Katherine Maher, CEO of the Wikimedia Foundation.

      • Wikipedia Embraces First-of-Its Kind Universal Code of Conduct, Conceived For The New Internet Era

        February 2, 2021. The Wikimedia Foundation, the nonprofit that administers Wikipedia, launched a first-of-its-kind Universal Code of Conduct that expands on the project’s existing policies to create a global set of community standards for addressing negative behavior on the site.

        More than 50% of the global population has access to the internet, an increase that has been linked to polarization, and rising violence from online speech against marginalized groups and ethnic communities according to a report from the Council on Foreign Relations. Given these trends, it is more important than ever for the Foundation and the volunteer community to strengthen accountability for content on Wikimedia projects including Wikipedia, the world’s largest online encyclopedia, as well as the policies that govern user behavior.

    • It’s Official: Linguistic Intent No Longer Matters at The New York Times

      This week, the newsroom revolted via a remarkable group letter in which more than 150 staffers at one of the country’s leading newspapers argued that word-choice intentions are “irrelevant,” because “what matters is how an act makes the victims feel.” Signees, declaring themselves “outraged and in pain” and “disrespected,” demanded a reinvestigation of the 2019 incident, an apology to the newsroom, and an organizational study into how racial biases affect editorial decisions. They also alleged that the controversy had surfaced new internal complaints about McNeil demonstrating “bias against people of color in his work and in interactions with colleagues over a period of years.”

      Rather than blanch at that suggested new journalistic standard—if the paper is no longer recognizing the linguistic use-mention distinction, then all it will take to prompt a vast scrubbing of the archives are enough offended “victims” of articles like these—The New York Times Company leadership (Baquet, Publisher A.G. Sulzberger, Chief Executive Meredith Kopit Levien) responded to the letter with anguished obsequiousness.

    • Iran arrests journalist Reza Taleshian Jelodarzadeh

      On January 20, Jelodarzadeh, editor-in-chief of the Tehran-based Nour-e Azadi magazine, wrote on his Instagram account that he had been arrested by Iranian authorities and was being transferred to Greater Tehran Prison. He also posted a photo of his shackled feet. CPJ was unable to determine his location at the time of his arrest.

      According to exile-run Human Rights Activists News Agency (HRANA) and the Amsterdam-based, Persian-language Radio Zamaneh, Jelodarzadeh was taken into custody to serve a three-year prison sentence dating to June 2019 for “disturbing public opinion” and “spreading anti-establishment propaganda” in part in relation to posts on Instagram and Telegram. According to HRANA, he was not imprisoned immediately after his sentencing, which also included a two-year ban on political, social, and journalistic activity.

    • Egypt Frees Al Jazeera Journalist After 4 Years in Detention

      Egyptian authorities on Saturday released Mahmoud Hussein, an Egyptian journalist working for Qatar’s Al Jazeera television network who had been held in pre-trial detention for more than four years, his brother and lawyer told Reuters.

      Hussein, who was detained in December 2016 after arriving Cairo from Doha for a vacation, was being held on charges of spreading false news, joining a banned group and receiving foreign funds.

      He was released several weeks after Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt agreed in January to restore diplomatic, trade and travel ties with Qatar severed in 2017 over allegations that Qatar supported terrorism, a charge that Doha denies.

  • Civil Rights/Policing

    • Opinion | Returning to the Roots of Community Resilience in Hawai’i

      Local agriculture initiatives offer a way toward food security through reconnection with the land and the true spirit of aloha.

    • Dolly Parton’s 2021 Super Bowl commercial is playing a rich man’s game

      Rather than paying homage to the spirit of the original song, which made no bones about the exploitative nature of the daily grind, the commercial for Squarespace features a tinny ode to the side hustle. Its office workers are portrayed as being overjoyed to continue working after hours, their side hustles are painted as freeing, fun and fulfilling, and the song itself encourages them to “be your own boss, climb your own ladder.”

      It’s a perfect storm of gig economy propaganda. And it’s a particularly disappointing message to hear from someone like Parton, who once warned us, “You’re just a step on the boss man’s ladder,” and made her cinematic debut as a secretary who gets so tired of her boss’s sexual harassment that she almost shoots him.

    • Swedish trade union calls for freedom for Öcalan

      Bonk said that the conflict between the Turkish state and the Kurdish Freedom Movement resulted in the death of more than 40 thousand people, the burning and evacuation of 4,500 villages, and displacement of millions of people from their lands.

      Previous experiences of conflict showed that strong leaders must persuade their own societies to find a peaceful solution to problems, Bonk said and pointed to Nelson Mandela, Gerry Adams, Jose Ramos-Horta and Aung San Suu Kyi as examples of powerful leaders.

      Emphasizing that Öcalan is among these leaders without any doubt, Bonk said, “Thanks to him, the Kurdish Freedom Movement has evolved from military solutions to political solutions in recent years.”

    • COVID-19 Creates Increased Risk of Female Genital Mutilation

      Leading United Nations agencies and human rights activists warn the COVID-19 pandemic puts girls at great risk of FGM, which thrives in isolation. They note lockdowns and school closures make girls particularly vulnerable to abuse.

      Without urgent action, they say 2 million more girls could be at risk of FGM over the next decade. World Health Organization Director-General, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus says this is in addition to the more than 3 million girls potentially facing the practice every year.

    • Repression in Xi’s China | Dissent Magazine

      In Hong Kong in Revolt, labor organizer Au Loong-Yu analyzes the protests that rocked the city in 2019. The participants were pushing back against the politically motivated disqualification of pro-democracy legislators, the imprisonment of nonviolent activists on trumped-up charges, and other oppressive moves by the Hong Kong authorities, who represent local moneyed interests and take their cues from Beijing leaders who increasingly act like heads of an empire. Au sees both anti-capitalist and anti-colonial dimensions to the 2019 protests, although he argues that activists should have been less focused on what sets Hong Kong residents apart from those living in mainland urban centers and more interested in using shared working-class grievances as a basis for building border-spanning solidarity.

      The War on the Uyghurs, by anthropologist Sean R. Roberts, who directs the International Development Studies Program at George Washington University, focuses on repression rather than resistance. Roberts makes a compelling case for seeing the Chinese Communist Party’s actions in Xinjiang, where many members of the largely Muslim local population are now detained in camps, as constituting a horrific crime against humanity.

      Read together, these books show how the political conditions in Hong Kong and Xinjiang, often treated separately, are linked.

  • Digital Restrictions (DRM)

    • The OTT war in India becomes intense in 2021

      Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and Disney+ have competition. Even as these established players expand their presence in the Indian market through innovations in content and strategy, a slew of new OTT players are set to disrupt and diversify the market.

      Last year, the world stumbled upon the reality of entertainment in the digital space mainly thanks to the Covid lockdown. What now looks to burgeoning into a multi-crore industry in the country, almost threatening the very existence of cinema halls, promises many more options for the consumers.

      We list some of the new players, who are carving a place in the Indian cyber space. Lionsgate Play

    • CBS All Access Crashes As Super Bowl LV Kicks Off

      A spokeswoman did not immediately respond to a request for comment. The Twitter account for CBS All Access support was responding to individual tweets for technical support but did not specifically address the outage. It’s unclear how widespread the outage was, but Twitter users complained just after the National Anthem performance that service was disrupted.

  • Monopolies

    • Counsel reveal how they pick venue in trade secret cases [Ed: The 'crime' of 'knowing' something... more ludicrous laws made by and for the rich looking for protectionism, expanding monopoly power and preserving their status (related to NDAs, too)]

      Lawyers explain how rules of procedure and case histories help them pick between federal and state courts for trade secrets

    • Patents

      • UK High Court clarifies sufficiency in Illumina and MGI patent dispute

        Illumina has won a patent infringement action against defendant Beijing Genomics Group (MGI) regarding five DNA sequencing technology patents. Initially, MGI had sought to sell DNA sequencing systems in the UK, as well as various other European countries. However, Illumina argued that the systems sold by MGI infringed its patents.

        Now the UK High Court has found four of five patents valid. It also ruled that MGI’s StandardMPS and CoolMPS systems infringe EP 537 B1, EP 289 B1, and EP 433 B1, with the StandardMPS system also infringing EP 415 B1. Illumina is set to push for a permanent injunction against MGI.

      • The Toolgen Interference: CVC Preliminary Motions List [Ed: Patent extremists and litigation profiteers are driving a "case" in which they argue for patents on life and nature themselves (not inventions, just gross monopolisation)]

        Senior Party Toolgen and Junior Parties The Broad Institute, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and Harvard University (collectively, “Broad”) in Interference No. 106,126 and University of California/Berkeley, the University of Vienna, and Emmanuelle Charpentier (collectively, “CVC”) in Interference No. 106,127 each filed Lists of Proposed Motions that the Board considered today and responsive thereto will issue its rulings shortly (see “The CRISPR Chronicles: Enter Toolgen”). The CVC list will be the subject of this post.

      • IBM now abandoning patents up for renewal at rate of over 50%
      • IBM abandonments soar; China scraps patent subsidies; UK EPO membership doubts; Acacia targets five with Yahoo! IP; New plan to judge SEP essentiality; and much more

        Everything we covered on IAM over the last seven days – and all you need to know from the global IP market to set yourself up for the start of another busy week

        [...]

        Data analysis conducted by IAM indicates that IBM is now abandoning US patents due for renewal at the rate of more than 50% a year.

      • Illumina illuminated in the twilight of Birss J’s Patents Court career – Part II – Kluwer Patent Blog

        Then at paragraph 512 the judge explained “The skilled person would hope the molecule worked satisfactorily because the two elements did not interact but they would need that to be demonstrated by an experiment testing the combination as a whole. That means that the collocation principle does not apply.”

        This is an interesting consideration of the law of collocation as it appears the judge found there to be invention in performing the tests necessary to confirm there would be no interaction between the separate building blocks of the patent given that there was a possibility that the elements would interact in an adverse way. As the judge noted at paragraph 510, this case was distinguishable from Sabaf since the “two aspects in Sabaf simply do not interact with one another. The skilled person did not have to test them to find out. A vice in MGI’s case is that it seeks to mix together considerations about things being obvious to try with the collocation principle”. Ultimately therefore, it appears that it is the empirical nature of the chemistry involved in creating these novel molecules which prevented a successful challenge based on collocation.

        The law regarding collocation makes occasional but nevertheless infrequent appearances in the case law of the English Patents Courts. Birss J’s analysis gives further guidance to practitioners outside of the context of mechanical inventions and in this respect is to be welcomed. It is not known if the parties will appeal this decision but if they do, the author suspects that the Court of Appeal will be unlikely to disagree with at least this aspect of the decision.

      • Pemetrexed in France Act 2: 1 PI + 4 millions

        Readers of the Blog should remember the French landmark French judgment rendered in September 2020 in the European Pemetrexed saga, which condemned Fresenius to pay € 28 million in damages (see here). This time the action brought by Eli Lilly on French territory concerns the same drug but is directed against another generic commercialized by Zentiva. Interestingly, the action takes a different form: it is no longer an infringement action, but a request for preliminary injunction and provisional damages before the pre-trial Judge (i.e. the Judge preparing the case on the merits).

        Let’s quickly remind ourselves of the facts. Eli Lilly’s patent EP 1,313,508 (“EP’508”) relates to the combined administration of the drug pemetrexed disodium (sold under the brand name Alimta®) with vitamin B 12, and possibly with folic acid, to treat two types of lung cancer.

        [...]

        Last but not least, the Judge issued a preliminary injunction on French territory while awarding an advance of € 4,000,000 in damages. According to the current practice of the Paris Court, in this type of case, the defendants must present their books to the plaintiff so that the final amount of damages can be calculated. Pending this investigation into damages, the Court ordered the defendants to pay an advance on the damages suffered by each plaintiff.

        As in the Fresenius case, with regard to the method of calculating damages, the Judge held adopted a 25% royalty rate, resulting in € 4 millions damages. Unfortunately, there is no basis for the amount of the 25% percentage, except that it is an increased rate compared to a normal one and that it had already been used in Fresenius case. Furthermore, we should note that the basis of the calculation – turnover – appears to be out of step with the French text on damages, which provides for 3 items of cumulative damage: negative economic consequences of the infringement (including the loss of profit and the loss suffered by the injured party); non-material damage; profits made by the infringer. An alternative is provided for: the court may (at the request of the injured party) award a lump sum (L. 615-7 of the French Intellectual Property Code). In this case, the fee requested from the Judge by Eli Lilly is not a lump sum. Consequently, it should not be able to rely on turnover, but only on profits, or even on loss of profit and/or non-pecuniary damage. In other words, the basis for the royalty rate may appear to be truncated since, according to article L. 615-7, it should be profits and/or loss of profit and/or non-material loss and not turnover. However, all this still seems less surprising than the impressive sum of 20 million euros awarded in the Fresenius case for unfair competition.

    • Trademarks

      • FDA approval a ‘real challenge’ for pharma trademarks in 2021 [Ed: Patrick Wingrove giving a platform to patent cartels and those hoarding medicine to keep prices artificially high, killing poor people in the process (the 'price' of doing 'business')]

        Counsel at four pharma firms, including BMS and Eli Lilly, set out what they need from external partners to get regulatory approval for new drug brands

    • Copyrights

      • Interview with Bill Patry, Senior Copyright Counsel at Google

        Dear readers, you may be aware that this Kat has a podcast – Whose Song is it Anyway? That she co-hosts with Jules O’Riordan (otherwise known as Judge Jules), interviewing people from the music industry about artists rights.

        [...]

        Bill explains why he would do away with expert witnesses in copyright infringement cases and shares the one thing he thinks needs changing in US copyright law to stop copyright trolling.

      • Walking Dead Producer Expects Revenue to Surge Thanks to Streaming Piracy Law

        The movie industry can look forward to a stellar year if we go by recent comments from producer Anne Hurd, who’s known for The Walking Dead and the Terminator trilogy. Hurd expects that the new felony streaming bill, which was approved late last year, will generate a revenue boost of up to 10%, returning “billions of dollars in stolen revenues.” We’re skeptical.

      • DISH Wins $2.7m From Pirate IPTV Provider & Hosting Company, Seizes Domains

        US broadcaster DISH Networks has won a $2.7m judgment against a pirate IPTV provider and a hosting company through which it operated. In addition, DISH has permission to seize all of the companies’ domains and order the disabling of any future domains, should they be used to infringe the broadcaster’s copyrights.

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