Links 3/5/2021: Sparky 5.15, Bill Gates Divorce, Netflix Fraud

Posted in News Roundup at 6:47 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • Xinitrc, Xprofile And More, What Do They All Do

        On our Linux systems there are all of these files with X at the start of there name like xinitrc and xprofile but what are they actually used for and how do some of them which seem very similar actually differ.

      • Destination Linux 224: Linux Kernel Bans UMN & Interview with Neal Gompa of Fedora Project

        This week’s episode of Destination Linux, we are going to talk with Neal Gompa, a DevOps Engineer by day and a Linux systems aficionado and developer by night about Fedora Linux 34 as well as Fedora KDE. Then we’ll check out the latest release of the open source video editor, Kdenlive 21.04 and in our Community Feedback we’ll talk about the situation around the Linux Kernel banning the University of Minnesota from contributing. Plus we’ve also got our famous tips, tricks and software picks. All of this and so much more this week on Destination Linux. So whether you’re brand new to Linux and open source or a guru of sudo. This is the podcast for you.

      • Late Night Linux – Episode 123 – Late Night Linux

        Whether there’s any point trying out random distros, and your feedback about AMD hardware, slow phones, messaging services, cryptocurrencies, and KDE.

    • Kernel Space

      • Microsoft is working towards running Linux as ARM64 Hyper-V guest [Ed: Microsoft boosters delighted to help Microsoft hijack the word "Linux" for PR, selling proprietary software and spying]
      • Linux 5.13 To Allow Zstd Compressed Modules, Zstd Update Pending With Faster Performance

        Adding to the variety of places where the Linux kernel supports making use of Zstd compression, kernel modules moving forward can now enjoy size reductions with Zstd.

        Linux already supports optional Gzip and XZ compression of kernel modules while beginning with Linux 5.13 there is support added for Zstd. In user-space, KMOD 28 already supports dealing with Zstd-compressed modules. The compressed modules are suffixed .ko.zst.

      • IO_uring Squeezes More Performance With Linux 5.13 – Phoronix

        Merged as part of the block subsystem changes for the Linux 5.13 were the usual assortment of enhancements to the exciting IO_uring. With this next kernel there is yet even better performance out of this morning Linux I/O interface.

        The IO_uring updates for Linux 5.13 include support for multi-shot mode for POLL requests, more efficient reference counting, no longer the need to have a manager thread for each ring, and a wide variety of smaller technical fixes and improvements.

      • Graphics Stack

        • Mesa 21.x Seems To Muck Up Gamers’ Trust Factor For Counter-Strike: Global Offensive – Phoronix

          Those moving to Mesa 21.x releases for the latest open-source GPU driver support on Linux are seemingly finding their Valve “Trust Factor” matchmaking system scores dropping for Counter-Strike: GO, leading to numerous upset Linux gamers with AMD Radeon GPUs.

          Back in January for Mesa 21.0 there was the CS:GO whitelisting for OpenGL threading with a focus on improving the performance for the RadeonSI Gallium3D driver with modern AMD Radeon graphics cards. Unfortunately, that appears to be lowering the Trust Factor for the game. Valve’s Trust Factor is their matchmaking system in use for Counter-Strike: Global Offensive for finding gamers to compete against with similar scores. Cheating and other opaque inputs go in to calculating the Trust Factor value for a particular game.

        • Wayland-Protocols 1.21 Released With XDG_Activation, Staging Replaces Unstable

          Released on Friday was a new version of Wayland-Protocols, the collection of protocol specifications for Wayland.

          With Wayland-Protocols 1.21 the XDG_Activation protocol has been introduced. This protocol is for transferring focus between top-level surfaces such as from a launcher to launchee.

    • Applications

      • BoM says issues with textmode browser lynx fixed; no mention of others

        The Australian Bureau of Meteorology says it has fixed the issues that prevented users of the textmode browser lynx from accessing its website.

        Many sight-impaired readers use lynx and other text-based browsers and a speech-to-text engine like festival to read these pages.

        In a statement sent in response to a query from iTWire, the BoM said: “The Bureau has now resolved an issue that inadvertently caused problems with the Lynx web-browser. The issue was caused with use of a tool that detects and stops screen scraping activity on the Bureau’s website.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • How to install Opera In Ubuntu 21.04 [ Using the terminal ]
      • How To Install GlassFish on Debian 10 – idroot

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install GlassFish on Debian 10. For those of you who didn’t know, GlassFish is an open-source application server and the reference implementation of Java EE. GlassFish 5 release supports the latest Java Platform: Enterprise Edition 8. It supports Enterprise JavaBeans, JPA, JavaServer Faces, JMS, RMI, JavaServer Pages, servlets, etc.

        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 GlassFish on a Debian 10 (Buster).

      • Linux Running Too Slow? Here’s How to Find the Cause – Make Tech Easier

        There’s nothing more frustrating than installing Linux on your PC and the whole system still feeling sluggish. After spending money building, purchasing or upgrading a machine, you expect it to be snappy. However, that’s not always the case, and with Linux, you can do quite a bit of investigating to check out what’s wrong. Today, we show you how to find the cause of your Linux machine running too slow.

      • How to Install .NET 5 on Ubuntu Linux [Ed: Helps Microsoft monopoly]

        Want to download and install .NET 5 on your Ubuntu machine but can’t figure out how? This guide will take you through the complete process of installing .NET 5 (Dotnet 5) on Ubuntu Linux 20.04 (LTS). Dotnet 5 is the latest version in the .NET Core family and it supports even more application types and platforms than its predecessor.

        Although this article will focus on installing .NET 5 on Ubuntu Linux, Dotnet 5 is also supported on other Linux distros such as CentOS, Red Hat Enterprise Linux, Alpine, etc.

      • How to install Wii Funkin’ on a Chromebook

        Today we are looking at how to install Wii Funkin’ 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.

        If you have any questions, please contact us via a YouTube comment and we would be happy to assist you!

      • Linux hdparm Command Tutorial – Linux Hint

        In Linux-type systems, the “hdparm” command tool is used to provide the interface for kernel-supported devices. It is to display the drive disk statistics and set hardware parameters and testing performance.
        This utility allows the user to perform DMA settings, set hardware parameters like cache settings, acoustic and power management.

        The operations of the “hdparm” command-line utility work properly with the latest kernel devices. But some of the options still support old disk drives.

      • How to install Chrome browser on Rocky Linux 8 – Linux Shout

        Chrome browser is not new to anyone, we all have used it now and then on our Desktop or smartphones. However, if you have just installed Rocky Linux to test it out and want to install Google Chrome browser in it then here are the steps to follow.

      • Use a 8×8 LED Matrix With Raspberry PI and Python

        A very simple electronic component, 8×8 Led Matrix with Raspberry PI (and Python) can display nice and simple images whose application limit is only your fantasy

        In this tutorial I’m going to show you how to setup and wire a 8×8 Led Matrix with Raspberry PI and Python, explaining code.

        8×8 LED matrix is a small display composed of 8 LED row, each one including 8 LEDs, thus forming a LED matrix (as per its name) . All its LED are usually monochromatic (only 1 colour). It appears as in following picture:

      • Finding the fingerprint of a given certificate
      • [Short Tip] Add a path entry to Nushell

        Adding a path in nushell is pretty straight forward: the configuration is done in ~/config/nu/config.toml in the [path] section.

      • How to configure and manage firewalld rules in Linux

        The firewall is essential for controlling the flow of network traffic in and out of the Linux server.

        It enables users to control incoming network traffic on host machines by defining a set of firewall rules.

        It must be enabled on production servers facing the Internet, to protect those servers from unauthorized access.

        This is one of those security features that ensures your system security at network level.

        In this guide, we’ll show you how to add, remove, enable, and disable firewalld rules & zones.

      • How to install Mattermost on Rocky Linux 8 – Linux Shout

        Mattermost enables the communication between individuals and groups. Communication can take place as a chat, video call, or normal telephone call. The exchange of data and links is also possible. Mattermost can be seen as a direct competitor of MS Teams or Slack in this regard. If you are cloud users such as AWS, Google, Azure, and others pre-built open-source images are available with them to install and deploy Mattermost on the cloud as quickly as possible. After installation, its web interface can be accessed using the browser or Mobile & Desktop Apps on Windows, Linux, and Mac, iOS, and Android.

        Under the name Omnibus, Mattermost released package, a complete stack of the free messaging system, can be installed with just a few commands. In addition to Mattermost itself, the administrator can set up PostgreSQL as a database, Nginx as a proxy web server, and Certbot to issue and renew SSL certificates in no time at all. However, Omnibus is only for Debian based system and will not work on RHEL or its derivatives, hence we have to set up Mattermost on Rocky Linux step by step.

      • How To Install Flameshot on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS – idroot

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Flameshot on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS. For those of you who didn’t know, Flameshot is an open-source screenshot and annotation tool designed for Linux, macOS, and Windows systems. This apps has a varied set of markup tools available, which include Freehand drawing, Lines, Arrows, Boxes, Circles, Highlighting, Blur. Additionally, you can customize the color, size, and thickness of many of these image annotation tools.

        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 Flameshot open-source screenshot tool on Ubuntu 20.04 (Focal Fossa). You can follow the same instructions for Ubuntu 18.04, 16.04, and any other Debian-based distribution like Linux Mint.

      • LFCS – Managing Software – Ubuntu | Linux.org

        With any Linux system, managing the system software is a major part of keeping the system working properly, Ubuntu is no exception. In my previous article, I covered this information for CentOS, this article will cover the Ubuntu side of Managing Software.

        There is a lot of information in this article, so make sure you have a fair understanding of everything as well as how it works together.

    • Games

      • Arcade top-down hack & slash Battle Axe is out now | GamingOnLinux

        Little over a year after the successful Kickstarter campaign, Battle Axe, an arcade styled hack and slash inspired by the likes of Golden Axe and Gauntlet. Created by veteran pixel artist Henk Nieborg of Bitmap Bureau and music from the legendary VGM composer Manami Matsumae.

        “For as long as you and your people can remember, your homeland of Mercia has been held in the tyrannical clutches of the malevolent sorceress, Etheldred. Some months ago, a party of mercenaries was dispatched to attempt to put a stop to Etheldred and her evil cohorts, but regrettably none of them have ever returned…”

    • Distributions

      • Screenshots/Screencasts

        • Elementary OS 6.0 Beta

          Today we are looking at Elementary OS 6.0 Beta It uses Linux Kernel 5.8, based on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS, and uses about 600MB of ram when idling. It is fast, lean but still in Beta as the name says (so keep it in mind).

        • Elementary OS 6.0 Beta Run Through

          In this video, we are looking at Elementary OS 6.0 Beta.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

      • Debian Family

        • Sparky 5.15

          There is a next point release of Sparky 5.15 “Nibiru” of the stable line ready to go. This release is based on Debian stable 10 “Buster”.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Ubuntu 16.04 LTS moves to paid Extended Support Maintenance

          Canonical has announced that Ubuntu 16.04 LTS has reached the end of its normal support lifecycle and has now been moved onto the Extended Support Maintenance track. This allows personal users to run Ubuntu 16.04 ESM on up to three machines and for enterprise customers to pay for the continued support. Extended Support Maintenance (ESM) will last until April 2024.

          With Ubuntu 16.04 LTS reaching end of life status in April, it will no longer receive security updates, therefore, anyone still running it needs to upgrade to Ubuntu 20.04 LTS or Ubuntu 18.04 LTS. For systems in enterprise environments, this may be easier said than done so Canonical offers ESM.

          With Ubuntu 16.04 ESM, customers will be provided with security updates for high and critical CVEs (Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures) in the Ubuntu base OS and scale-out infrastructures such as Ceph and OpenStack. At the time of writing, only 64-bit x86 machines are supported by Canonical’s ESM scheme.

        • Linux Mint’s File Transfer App is Now Available for Android

          Linux Mint’s Warpinator file transfer tool is now available for Android devices, including Chromebooks.

          The tool makes it super-easy to fling files from computer to computer over your local network, no third-party hosting required.

          A desktop app is included in Linux Mint 20 and up, and is available for other Linux distros via Flathub.

          Now Android is in the on the action thanks to the efforts of an independent developer and their work on an open source port to the popular mobile platform.

          Mint devs say the app “works very well” already, despite being a relatively young project. The Play Store description states that is “fully compatible with the original protocol and allows for easy transfer of files between Android and Linux devices”.

          “When we made Warpinator we solved a need we had within Linux Mint and made the software available for all Linux distributions, but although we wouldn’t spend the resources to make it work on other OSes […] we wanted to use simple and open technologies to make it possible for this software to be developed by others,” says Mint’s lead Clement Lefèbvre.

        • Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter Issue 681
        • Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter Issue 681

          Welcome to the Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter, Issue 681 for the week of April 25 – May 1, 2021. The full version of this issue is available here.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Open Source audio editor Audacity is now part of MuseGroup

        Audacity is one of the most popular free cross-platform open source audio editors. It can be downloaded and used on Windows, Mac OS and GNU/Linux machines, and is regularly updated and quite accessible.

        Audacity, as an open source project, is maintained by a group of contributors. Anyone may download the source code of the program and compile it, or contribute code to the project.

        We have followed the development of the audio editor for years, and even published a few tutorials here on this site. Did you know that you may use Audacity to merge Mp3 or Wav files, or to generate and save white noise audio files?

        The first mention of Audacity dates back to 2008 when we published a tutorial on creating ringtones using the software and YouTube. Ringtones, at least in the original form, have faded away.

      • qBittorrent 4.3.5

        The qBittorrent project aims to provide a Free Software alternative to µtorrent. qBittorrent is an advanced and multi-platform BitTorrent client with a nice user interface as well as a Web UI for remote control and an integrated search engine. qBittorrent aims to meet the needs of most users while using as little CPU and memory as possible. qBittorrent is a truly Open Source project, and as such, anyone can and should contribute to it.

      • Glucosio: an ads-free Libre diabetes manager for Android devices and iOS

        Diabetes is a life-altering disease, which require a daily follow-up and management discipline for patients.

        Google Play Store and Apple App Store have dozens of diabetes management applications, but they either come with a cost, populated with ads or with limited features to force the customer to buy the full package.

        Here, we offer a wonderful alternative for android which comes completely free, without ads and even is released as an open-source project under GPL V3.0 license.

      • Web Browsers

        • Mozilla

          • Mozilla Localization (L10N): Mozilla VPN Client: A Localization Tale

            On April 28th, Mozilla successfully launched its VPN Client in two new countries: Germany and France. While the VPN Client has been available since 2020 in several countries (U.S., U.K., Canada, New Zealand, Singapore, and Malaysia), the user interface was only available in English.

            This blog post describes the process and steps needed to make this type of product localizable within the Mozilla ecosystem.

      • Productivity Software/LibreOffice/Calligra

      • FSF

      • Programming/Development

        • Jussi Pakkanen: “Should we break the ABI” is the wrong question

          The ongoing battle on breaking C++’s ABI seems to be gathering steam again. In a nutshell there are two sets of people in this debate. The first set wants to break ABI to gain performance and get rid of bugs, whereas the second set of people want to preserve the ABI to keep old programs working. Both sides have dug their heels in the ground and refuse to budge.

          However debating whether the ABI should be broken or not is not really the issue. A more productive question would be “if we do the break, how do we keep both the old and new systems working at the same time during a transition period”. That is the real issue. If you can create a good solution to this problem, then the original problem goes away because both sides get what they want. In other words, what you want to achieve is to be able to run a command like this:

          prog_using_old_abi | prog_using_new_abi

          and have it work transparently and reliably. It turns out that this is already possible. In fact many (most?) people are reading this blog post on a computer that already does exactly that.

        • Qt Developer Conference

          We at KDAB are pleased to announce an event we’re planning to host in Berlin this fall, September 28-30. Save the dates for KDAB’s Qt Developer Conference — a conference from Qt developers for Qt developers!

          Qt Desktop Days, May 2021 — Cancelled

          Before we tell you more about Qt Dev Con, we’d like to let you all know, or confirm what you may have already heard, that the Qt Desktop Days conference that we were planning for this month has been cancelled. This was due to the dates of the event coinciding with those of a couple of other big events. We’d like to try to give you all a better chance to attend more conferences, rather than having to miss out on one or two of them. Therefore, the desktop aspect of Qt development will be integrated into our Qt Developer Conference in the fall, instead.

        • Perl/Raku

          • Rakudo Weekly News: 2021.18 Double Comma

            Jonathan Worthington has just announced a new release of Comma (the IDE for the Raku Programming Language), both the paid version as well as the free Community Edition! With a lot of new pod related features, support for meta-class methods (handy if you’re using Red), and a nice bunch of bug fixes and other improvements.

            If you like the Comma Community Edition, consider buying the Comma Complete Edition with additional features: it will pay for further development of the free version as well as for future complete editions!

          • TPF made me wait 301 hours to learn my punishment
  • Leftovers

    • Bill Gates is getting divorced [ He tweeted ]

      After a tweet we know that mr. Bill Gates is divorcing his wife Melinda Gates.

    • Science

      • Anumeracy is bad, and I just met it

        The graph above represents the membership of an organization, from 2011 to 2021. I saw it by chance, because someone posted it online, worrying that the organization may never recover for such a steep loss. He wrote, more or less: “a 10% decrease in membership in one year! If this is confirmed, it’s a meltdown!”

    • Health/Nutrition

      • What can policymakers learn from the UK’s RECOVERY trial to improve clinical research for COVID-19 and beyond?

        In early March 2020, Oxford University scientists Martin Landray and Peter Horby recognized the crucial role well-designed clinical trials would play in combating the emerging pandemic and avoiding the mistakes of past health crises, where “everyone runs around like headless chickens with scientists and doctors acting alone, each testing different treatments in small numbers of patients; creating lots of noise, but no answers.” Landray and Horby consequently focused on four “keys” to the RECOVERY trial: size, speed, randomization, and simplicity. Without an easy way to enroll patients in a randomized trial, doctors would be left to make individual choices about experimental treatments and would not be able to generate good evidence of whether those treatments actually worked.

        Broadly speaking, RECOVERY is a “platform” trial, a clinical trial “defined by the broad goal of finding the best treatment for a disease by simultaneously investigating multiple treatments . . . [where the] focus is on the disease rather than any particular experimental therapy.” (In other instances, “platform” trials are called “master protocol trials,” “basket trials, or “umbrella trials.”)

        To achieve its aims, RECOVERY was designed to make randomizing treatments fast and simple for doctors. It is “multi-armed” with a single control, meaning that instead of inefficiently testing each intervention against its own control group, only a single control is needed to test multiple interventions. It is also “adaptive,” meaning that the trial design is modified based on interim data analyses, such as by randomizing fewer patients to less promising treatments and shutting down treatment arms that have been shown to be ineffective, such as hydroxychloroquine, lopinavir/ritonavir, and azithromycin. The RECOVERY trial can also add arms; for example, this fall it added aspirin, colchicine, and Regeneron’s antibody cocktail. Thus far, the trial has investigated 13 products, with positive results reported for dexamethasone and tocilizumab.

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Ransomware Hits Scripps Health, Disrupting Critical Care, Online Portal

          Scripps Health in San Diego was hit by a ransomware attack over the weekend, forcing the health system into EHR downtime. Some critical care patients were diverted and the online patient portal has been taken offline, according to local news outlet San Diego Union-Tribune.

          Monday appointments were also postponed due to the cyberattack, which disrupted operations at two of Scripps’ four main hospitals and backup servers that reside in Arizona. Providers and other clinicians are leveraging paper records, as telemetry has been impacted at most care sites. Access to medical imaging also appears to be down.

          Reports say all four hospitals in Encinitas, La Jolla, San Diego, and Chula Vista were placed on emergency care diversion for stroke and heart attack patients, who were diverted to other medical centers when possible. All trauma patients were also diverted.

        • Spotify’s Redesigned Desktop App is Now Available on Linux

          Spotify announced a redesign of its desktop app at the end of March, and the revamp has finally found its way to my Linux desktop — and maybe yours, too!

          The UI rejig improves the music streaming client’s core navigation, in particular access to search. In older versions of the client the ‘search’ feature appeared and disappeared depending on the view. Now it’s in the sidebar, in all views.

        • Pseudo-Open Source

          • Privatisation/Privateering

            • Linux Foundation

        • Security

          • Security updates for Monday

            Security updates have been issued by CentOS (bind, GNOME, java-1.8.0-openjdk, java-11-openjdk, nss and nspr, xstream, and xterm), Debian (bind9 and libimage-exiftool-perl), Fedora (ansible, babel, java-11-openjdk, and java-latest-openjdk), Gentoo (chromium, clamav, firefox, git, grub, python, thunderbird, tiff, webkit-gtk, and xorg-server), Mageia (kernel, nvidia-current, nvidia390, qtbase5, and sdl2), openSUSE (Chromium, cifs-utils, cups, giflib, gsoap, libnettle, librsvg, netdata, postsrsd, samba, thunderbird, virtualbox, and webkit2gtk3), Red Hat (bind), Scientific Linux (bind), and SUSE (containerd, docker, runc and xen).

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

            • RotaJakiro Linux Backdoor Malware Escaped Detection Since 2018 As It Continued Stealing Data

              Researchers from Qihoo 360’s Network Security Research Lab (360 Netlab) have caught a new malware in the wild. Though it isn’t really a new malware, rather it successfully stayed under the radar for three years.

              Identified as RotaJakiro, the researchers have observed it serving as a backdoor malware targeting Linux devices. The backdoor mainly steals data from the infected machines, alongside installing various plugins.

              Overall, the researchers have found 4 different samples of the same malware in the wild – all with zero VirusTotal detections. However, they analyzed the latest malware variant to study RotaJakiro.

              Briefly, RotaJakiro is a unique malware in that it uses rotates encryption and exhibits different behavior for root/non-root accounts. It uses numerous encryption algorithms during its operation. For instance, it relies on AES to encrypt resource information. Whereas, it uses XOR, AES, ROTATE encrypt ion, and ZLIB compression to communicate with its C&C.

    • Digital Restrictions (DRM)

      • Netflix VP convicted for fraud

        A federal jury convicted former Netflix vice president of IT Michael Kail on 28 fraud and money laundering counts.

        Kail, who was indicted in 2018, used his position to create a “pay-to-play” scheme where he approved contracts with outside tech companies looking to do business with Netflix in exchange for taking bribes and kickbacks.

        According to the Department of Justice’s press release, Kail accepted bribes or kickbacks from nine different companies totalling more than $500,000 as well as stock options.

        Netflix sued Kail after he exited the company in 2014 to take a role as Yahoo’s CIO, accusing him of fraud and breaching his fiduciary duties.

        One FBI agent says that Kail “stole the opportunity to work with an industry pioneer from honest, hardworking, Silicon Valley companies”.

      • NetFlix executive Michael Kail convicted of fraud, money laundering

        A federal jury has convicted a former Netflix executive on charges that he rigged agreements with smaller companies so that they would make kickbacks to him when they received payments from Netflix for new products and services.

        Michael Kail, 49, of Los Gatos, who led Netflix’s information technology operations from 2011 to 2014, created and controlled a company called Unix Mercenary LLC, which had no employees or location, for the purpose of receiving more than $500,000 plus stock options from nine companies, according to statement released Friday by the United States Attorney’s Office in San Jose.

    • Monopolies

      • Patents

        • Judge Newman Again Stands As Sole Ally To PTAB Bias Claim [Ed: Patent litigation 'industry' lobbyists still trying to brew phony 'scandals' over PTAB in order to shore up fake patents such as software patents, shielding them from scrutiny]

          The Federal Circuit on Monday considered for the second time whether Patent Trial and Appeal Board judges are financially motivated to institute patent challenges, and while the panel majority again seemed unpersuaded, Judge Pauline Newman voiced serious concern over the patent judges’ bonus structure.

          The court’s longest-serving judge said Article III judges like herself aren’t given bonuses based on how many cases they decide and questioned why administrative patent judges should be financially rewarded for their productivity.

        • Invention of a Slave: 2021 Redux

          Tormasi is also a patentee. His U.S. Patent No. 7,324,301 covers a computer hard-drive that allows for “simultaneously and independently” reading and/or writing on different carrier surfaces within the drive.


          Capacity to Sue: Under the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, a plaintiff’s capacity to sue is determined “by the law of the individual’s domicile.” For Tormasi, that is New Jersey. New Jersey has a statute on point: “Every person who has reached the age of majority . . . and has the mental capacity may prosecute or defend any action in any court.” N.J. STAT. ANN. § 2A:15-1 (2013). However, New Jersey’s Prison Administrative Code sets forth regulations that prohibit prisoners from “operating a business … without the approval of the Administrator” N.J. ADMIN. CODE § 10A:4-4.1. Tormasi does not have the Adminstrator’s approval. The courts found that this non-statutory administrative rule was sufficient to limit the state statute — superseding his right to file a lawsuit in his personal capacity. It seems to me that rule eliminating a party’s right to file a civil lawsuit probably should have been a bit more direct.

        • Supreme Court offers Hope on Eligibility Case [Ed: Dennis Crouch, who is admittedly funded by the patent lobby (e.g. those working to undermine patent quality and cancel Section 101), is at it again]

          The Supreme Court today called for the views of the Solicitor General (CVSG) in this important patent eligibility case. “The Acting Solicitor General is invited to file a brief in this case expressing the views of the United States.”

          In a pair of briefs filed in 2019, then Solicitor General Noel Francisco argued that the Court should hear a new eligibility case to clarify its precedent: “the Court’s recent decisions have fostered uncertainty concerning those substantive Section 101 standards.”

        • USPTO hiring hundreds of new patent examiners [Ed: Dennis Crouch reaffirms his longstanding position as USPTO mouthpiece. He moreover gets funded by litigation giants that push for software patents, patents on nature etc.]

          The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is seeking soon-to-be graduates and professionals with backgrounds in graphic design/art, as well as engineers with backgrounds in biomedical, computer, electrical, and mechanical engineering to apply for hundreds of entry-level patent examiner positions in Alexandria, Virginia.

        • Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe launches patent practice with Hengeler counsel [Ed: What on Earth is this? JUVE is once again doing ads in ‘article’ clothing….]
        • Software Patents

          • Shopify joins the Open Invention Network Linux patent protection group | ZDNet [Ed: IBM-led front group that, along with other companies, seeks to basically legitimise software patents]

            Shopify is a leading global e-commerce company. Its software tools are used by 1.7-million real businesses in more than 175 countries to start, grow, market, and manage retail businesses. Shopify, like so many other companies, owes its success to open-source software.

            “At Shopify, we’ve built our platform on Ruby on Rails. We view open-source software as a key foundation for our business,” said Robert Guay, Shopify senior counsel of intellectual property. “By joining the Open Invention Network, we have committed to patent non-aggression in core Linux and adjacent open-source software. We believe that this commitment will promote innovation and help enable entrepreneurs and developers to build on open source foundations without focusing on the threat of litigation. We strongly encourage all forward-looking e-commerce platforms, retailers, and other companies to do the same.”

            With more than 1.58 million websites running on Shopify’s software, the company is a business-to-business powerhouse. Indeed, it’s Canada’s largest publicly traded company.

            That’s in no small part because, as Keith Bergelt, OIN’s CEO, observed: “Shopify’s platform provides not only the tools to build an online store, but also a full suite of merchant solutions, including payment processing through Shopify Payments and loans through Shopify Capital, among others. Ecommerce platforms, fintech, and financial services companies should all take note of Shopify’s growth and leadership, which has been built upon open-source software going back to its launch.”

          • $1,500 Awarded for 21st Century Garage prior art

            Unified is pleased to announce the PATROLL crowdsourcing contest winner, Preeti Dua, who received a cash prize of $1,500 for her prior art submission for U.S. Patent 6,526,460. The ‘460 patent, formerly owned by Intellectual Ventures, is owned by 21st Century Garage, LLC, an NPE. The ’460 patent generally relates to a vehicle communications system, in particular for a motor vehicle, having a plurality of equipment units for transmitting, receiving, acquiring and/or processing data for executing applications.

          • BCS Software reexamination request granted

            On April 30, 2021, the USPTO granted Unified’s request for ex parte reexamination, finding substantial new questions of patentability on all challenged claims on U.S. Patent 7,302,612, owned by BCS Software LLC. The ’612 patent relates to a high-level operational support framework for monitoring, assessing, and managing the health of applications (or components/objects) in a distributed computing environment. The ‘612 patent has been asserted against Hewlett Packard, Elster Solutions (Honeywell), Landis+Gyr, and Itron.

Links 3/5/2021: New in OpenBSD 6.9 and Audacity Acquired By Muse Group

Posted in News Roundup at 12:58 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Linux Weekly Roundup – Fedora 34, elementary OS 6 Beta and More

      We had some huge Linux distribution updates again this week following the trends from last week. Some major release candidates of popular distributions also landed. A quite handful of applications received their minor bug fix update as well. Overall it is an eventful week and let’s take a look in brief at those.

    • 9to5Linux Weekly Roundup: May 2nd, 2021

      This week has been very interesting with the release of the Fedora Linux 34 operating system, GNOME 40’s landing in Solus’ repositories, another major Plasma Mobile update, as well as the arrival of the Budgie 10.5.3 desktop environment.

      On top of that, there were new releases of the GNU Linux-libre kernel, MusE digital audio workstation, KaOS Linux distribution, as well as news about GNOME’s GUADEC 2021 conference and the upcoming Ubuntu 21.10 (Impish Indri) release. You can enjoy these and much more in the 9to5Linux Weekly Roundup for May 2nd, 2021.

    • Run Linux on Refurbished Mini PCs – Motherboard – Part 3

      If you need a fast computer but don’t have much to spend, consider picking up an off-lease refurbished system. These PCs are a few years old and have seen some use, but they are often heavily discounted and offer a lot of bang for your buck.

      A motherboard is the main printed circuit board (PCB) in general-purpose computers and other expandable systems. It holds and allows communication between many of the crucial electronic components of a system, such as the central processing unit (CPU) and memory, and provides connectors for other peripherals.

      There’s a number of factors you’ll need to bear in mind when selecting a refurbished mini PC. For such a small chassis, you’d expect to see some lack of connectivity or compromises due to its size.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

    • Kernel Space

      • Linux 5.13 Networking Includes BPF Improvements, Optimizations, WWAN + MANA

        Last week the big set of networking subsystem updates were submitted and merged for the ongoing Linux 5.13 merge window.

        The networking updates this cycle were another hearty mix of new network adapter support, optimizations for performance and reliability, continuing to extend the capabilities of (e)BPF, and more.

      • Intel’s Linux Vulkan Driver Adds Fragment Shading Rate Support

        Intel’s open-source “ANV” Vulkan Linux driver has finally merged support for the KHR_fragment_shading_rate extension.

        Introduced last October with Vulkan 1.2.158 was this fragment shading rate extension for changing the rate at which certain fragments are shaded. The fragment shading rate with this extension can be manipulated on a per-draw, per-primitive, or per-region manner. Use of this fragment shading rate extension can be used by Vulkan-powered games for shading higher levels of detail in a scene compared to others or rather less important areas at a lower quality shading in select areas of the scene.

      • Microsoft Prepping Linux For Running As 64-bit ARM Hyper-V Guest

        While Microsoft’s Hyper-V virtualization hypervisor and their Azure cloud has largely been x86_64 focused, with the Linux 5.13 kernel they are moving further for supporting Linux as a ARM64 Hyper-V guest.

        Microsoft’s Hyper-V changes that were merged last week for the Linux 5.13 kernel include VMBus enhancements and other work, but arguably most notable are new patches for “running Linux as Arm64 Hyper-V guest.”

      • A Gentle Introduction to eBPF

        In this article, we will review what eBPF is, what it does, and how it works. Then, we will explain how to execute an eBPF program and provide an example of eBPF in action. Finally, we will conclude with recommendations for next steps.
        eBPF lets programmers execute custom bytecode within the kernel without having to change the kernel or load kernel modules. Exciting? Maybe not yet.

    • Applications

      • Meet Enve: An Open Source 2D Animation Software

        Enve is a cross-platform application that allows you to create vector animations and raster animations. You can even use audio and video files for creating your animation.

        Enve is open-source software using GPL 3 license. It is available for Linux, macOS and Windows.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • Learn Different Networking Options in VirtualBox

        Setting up networking is quite a difficult task in VirtualBox compared to other operations. Configuring networking can be done in a few clicks but understanding what are different network modes available and you have to choose a model that satisfies your needs.

      • Russell Coker: DNS, Lots of IPs, and Postal

        I decided to start work on repeating the tests for my 2006 OSDC paper on Benchmarking Mail Relays [1] and discover how the last 15 years of hardware developments have changed things. There have been software changes in that time too, but nothing that compares with going from single core 32bit systems with less than 1G of RAM and 60G IDE disks to multi-core 64bit systems with 128G of RAM and SSDs. As an aside the hardware I used in 2006 wasn’t cutting edge and the hardware I’m using now isn’t either. In both cases it’s systems I bought second hand for under $1000. Pedants can think of this as comparing 2004 and 2018 hardware.

      • How To Install Skype on Linux Mint 20 [Ed: This lets Microsoft spy on conversations; viable Free software alternatives do exist]

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Skype on Linux Mint 20. For those of you who didn’t know, Skype is the most popular communication application in the world that allows you to make free online audio and video calls. You can also use Skype for instant messaging text, audio, video, and images. One of the great features of Skype is its conference call feature.

        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 the step-by-step installation of Skype video conferencing and chatting application on a Linux Mint 20 (Ulyana).

      • Fix library paths for ROX-Filer running in container

        Continuing to track down the wallpaper problem, I see also some icons are not rendering properly. Comparing XenialPup and Racy, the former renders wallpaper and icons perfectly.
        Very odd, but then I discovered that in Racy, when right-clicked on an image file and chose to run Viewnior (image viewer), it did not run. Yet, launching “# viewnior <name of image>” in terminal, it did work.
        Connecting the dots, I realised that the problem occurs if the distro-in-container has different paths to shared library files than the host distro. Racy is ancient and still has many library files in /usr/X11R7/lib. Rox is not seeing those.
        Other applications are seeing them, just not rox. Hmmm…

      • How to Install Apache Nifi in Ubuntu Linux

        Apache NIFI is an open-source scalable tool to manage transformation, data routing, and system mediation logic. To put it in layman’s terms nifi simply automates the flow of data between two or more systems.

        It is cross-platform and written in Java that supports 180+ plugins that allow you to interact with different kinds of systems. In this article, we will take a look at how to set up Nifi on Ubuntu 20.04 and Ubuntu 18.04.

      • How to Set Custom Screen Resolution in Ubuntu Wayland & Xorg | UbuntuHandbook

        Since Ubuntu 21.04 uses Wayland as default display server, the previous method using xrandr does not longer work for adding custom screen resolution.

        So this tutorial is going to show you another way to add your favorite screen resolution if it’s not available in Display settings.

        In the case, I’ve the default 1920X1080 (16:9) resolution. However, I prefer 1600X900 (16:9) a little more which is not available in settings.

      • How To Install and Configure Gradle on Linux Distributions

        Gradle is one of the best open-source automation build tools that are available for Linux systems. The Gradle build tool is used for faster, efficient, and organized software development and production. Gradle can compile source code, convert packages into binary code, make library functions, run the autotest, and many more to automate the software production. If you’re a programmer or involved in the software industry, the Gradle automation tool can be a handy application to automate your works.

      • Configure WireGuard VPNs with NetworkManager – Fedora Magazine

        Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) are used extensively. Nowadays there are different solutions available which allow users access to any kind of resource while maintaining their confidentiality and privacy.

        Lately, one of the most commonly used VPN protocols is WireGuard because of its simplicity, speed and the security it offers. WireGuard’s implementation started in the Linux kernel but currently it is available in other platforms such as iOS and Android among others.

        WireGuard uses UDP as its transport protocol and it bases the communication between peers upon Critokey Routing (CKR). Each peer, either server or client, has a pair of keys (public and private) and there is a link between public keys and allowed IPs to communicate with. For further information about WireGuard please visit its page.

        This article describes how to set up WireGuard between two peers: PeerA and PeerB. Both nodes are running Fedora Linux and both are using NetworkManager for a persistent configuration.

      • 5 tips for deciding which Linux tasks and workloads to automate | Enable Sysadmin

        If you’ve been automating your internal processes, building CI/CD pipelines, and writing Ansible code for a few years, then it can be hard to remember a time before automation had taken over your everyday workflow. Deciding on what to automate can be daunting for a beginner: There are programming languages to learn, tools to familiarize yourself with, and terms like “idempotency” to add to your vocabulary. How can you decide on where to even begin with automation? In this article, I walk you through five tips that have guided my decisions when it comes to building new automation.

    • Games

      • Grand strategy game Secret Government has left Early Access with Linux support

        Secret Government, a grand strategy game about being the leader of a secret organization that changes the course of history is officially out now. It released earlier in April, with the 1.0 build for Linux arriving a little later on April 30.

      • Infinitrap : Rehamstered goes free for Linux on the Snap store

        Free Game Monday returns! Ready for a new adventure? Well, you can now grab Infinitrap : Rehamstered for Linux absolutely free if you go to the Snap store. A very overlooked game that hasn’t seen much players or press.

      • Top New Games You Can Play With Proton Since Apr. 2021

        nd May here we are! Here is our usual monthly update! Boiling Steam looks at the latest data dumps from ProtonDB to give you a quick list of new games that work (pretty much?)

      • satryn is a free twin-stick infinite shooter that deserves to be played | GamingOnLinux

        Free Game Monday! How about checking out satryn, a completely free infinite twin-stick shooter and it’s absolutely awesome once you get a few levels in.

        The developer doesn’t really give it much of an introduction on their store page so allow me: satryn is crazy. Much like other classic small-arena shooters it starts off slow, gradually introducing you to more varied enemy types. Some wander around, some fire at you, some constantly spawn new enemies and so on – it gets seriously action packed and becomes completely over the top eventually. You also need to try and collect little blue friends floating around too, and they increase your score multiplier.

      • Beyond a Steel Sky gets a big upgrade with newer Vulkan support

        Quite a lot came with this new version include Cloud Saves on Steam, Moving from Unreal Engine 4.24 to 4.26, NPCs should no longer block you in the Aspiration Gala, an issue with Alonso “rolling his eyes into his head in snarky / possessed ways” was solved, snappier loading times, much better gamepad support and so on. A big maintenance release to improve the adventure game. Oh, saves actually have timestamps now too which is useful.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • New Video: Perspective in Krita part 2. Building a house from scratch in 2021!

          We’ve got a new video in our channel! Ramon shares his technique on creating a house using Krita’s perspective tools…

        • Daniel Vrátil: Taking a break

          It took me a while to realize that the problem was that I was putting pressure on myself to contribute even though I did not feel like it. It turned from hobby and passion into a duty, and that’s wrong.

          I think the main frustration comes from the feeling that I cannot innovate – I’m bound by various restrictions – libraries and languages I can use, APIs I must preserve/conform to, legacy behavior to not break anything for existing users… This has been taking away the fun. I have enough of this in my dayjob, thank you. So….

          I decided to take a break from KDE PIM for a while. I’m sure I’ll be back at some point. But right now I feel like I gave it all I could and it’s still not where I’d like it to be and it’s no longer fun for me. What makes me very happy is the number of new contributors that have appeared over the past year or so.

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • GNOME 40 Looks Even Better with a Bit of Blur

          I dig GNOME 40 and its rejigged layout, and while its horizontal app switcher and use of border radius isn’t to everyone’s tastes —sharp intake of understatement breath— it certainly pleases mine!

          But do you know what would make me love the GNOME 40 UI even more?

          Okay, yes: proper Dash to Dock support — but other than that?

          A bit more blur.

          And whaddya know: there’s a GNOME Shell extension that offers it!

    • Distributions

      • BSD

        • OpenBSD 6.9 packages using IPFS

          The benefits is to play with IPFS to understand how it works with a real world use case. Instead of using mirrors to distributes packages, my server is providing the packages and everyone downloading it can also participate into providing data to other IPFS client, this can be seen as a dynamic Bittorrent CDN (Content Delivery Network), instead of making a torrent per file, it’s automatic. You certainly wouldn’t download each packages as separate torrents files, nor you would download all the packages in a single torrent.

          This could reduce the need for mirrors and potentially make faster packages access to people who are far from a mirrors if many people close to that person use IPFS and downloaded the data. This is a great technology that can only be beneficial once it reach a critical mass of adopters.

        • OPENBSD 6.9 [at talospace]

          With this release, your BSD choices on OpenPOWER just got more solid between this and the mature FreeBSD port. Again, the real shame is why there’s still no support for OpenPOWER in NetBSD.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • CentOS alternative AlmaLinux gets commercial support

          For many years, CentOS Linux was beloved by Linux-savvy system administrators because they could use it and get all the goodness of Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) without paying for support, unless they really, really needed help. Now CloudLinux is recreating the same model to support its RHEL clone, AlmaLinux.


          CloudLinux is offering multi-tiered support for the AlmaLinux OS. This includes regular patches and updates for Linux kernel and core packages, patch delivery service-level agreements (SLA)s, and 24/7 incident support.

          The AlmaLinux community already offers some of these elements, such as Linux kernel and core package patches and updates. But, for businesses, there’s a critical difference between relying upon the kindness of a community and a solid support contract.

          Besides the usual business Linux support services, CloudLinux will also offer a premium support tier for enterprises that require enhanced services. For example, if you need hands-on support for your AlmaLinux datacenter, it will be available. In addition, if you want to build commercial products and services based on AlmaLinux, CloudLinux can be there to help you.

        • Why is F34 the Most Popular Fedora Linux in Years?
        • Why I support systemd’s plan to take over the world

          Over the years, I have read many articles and posts about how systemd is trying to replace everything and take over everything in Linux. I agree; it is taking over pretty much everything.

          But not really “everything-everything.” Just “everything” in that middle ground of services that lies between the kernel and things like the GNU core utilities, graphical user interface desktops, and user applications.

          Examining Linux’s structure is a way to explore this. The following figure shows the three basic software layers found in the operating system. The bottom is the Linux kernel; the middle layer consists of services that may perform startup tasks, such as launching various other services like Network Time Protocol (NTP), Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP), Domain Name System (DNS), secure shell (SSH), device management, login services, gettys, Network Manager, journal and log management, logical volume management, printing, kernel module management, local and remote filesystems, sound and video, display management, swap space, system statistics collection, and much more. There are also tens of thousands of new and powerful applications at the top layer.

        • OKRs vs. KPIs: What’s the difference?

          Like the OKR, the KPI has been around for a while. It’s a common method of measuring corporate performance – and like OKRs, KPIs can be defined at organizational, team, and individual levels. So how do the terms relate? Are they interchangeable? If not, why not?

          Most folks agree that the two concepts and their usage are distinct. (As with many business and technology principles, not everyone agrees on how the terms should be defined or applied, particularly when it comes to KPIs.)

          “While there are similarities, OKRs and KPIs are not interchangeable,” says Jon Knisley, principal, automation and process excellence at FortressIQ. “KPIs provide a measurable assessment of performance. They are descriptive and tend to look backward. OKRs are also measurable and timeboxed, but since they tend to be more aspirational, OKRs provide a more strategic view of what’s ahead.”

        • Red Hat Software Collections 3.7 and Red Hat Developer Toolset 10.1 beta versions now available

          The latest versions of Red Hat Software Collections and Red Hat Developer Toolset are available now in beta. Software Collections 3.7 delivers the latest stable versions of many popular open source runtime languages, web servers, and databases natively to the Red Hat Enterprise Linux platform. These components are supported for up to five years, supporting a more consistent, efficient, and reliable developer experience.


          Also new in Software Collections 3.7 is Developer Toolset 10.1, which features GNU Compiler Collection (GCC) 10.2.1, a new update of the popular free software compiler collection. GCC is a curated collection of compilers, toolchains, debuggers, and other critical development tools. Additional updates in Developer Toolset 10.1 center on delivering new updates of C/C++ and Fortran debugging and performance tools.

        • Instant replay: Debugging C and C++ programs with rr – Red Hat Developer

          The common theme in many time-travel movies is to go back in time to find out what went wrong and fix it. Developers also have that desire to go back in time and find why the code broke and fix it. But, often, that crucial step where everything went wrong happened long ago, and the information is no longer available.

          The rr project lets programmers examine the entire life of a C or C++ program run, and replay code execution to see what action in the past caused “things to go horribly wrong.” rr is packaged with Extra Packages for Enterprise Linux (EPEL) in Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL), and with Fedora 31, 32, 33, and 34.

          rr records trace information about the execution of an application. This information allows you to repeatedly replay a particular recording of a failure and examine it in the GNU Debugger (GDB) to better investigate the cause. In addition to replaying the trace, rr lets you run the program in reverse, in essence allowing you “rewind the tape” to see what happened earlier in the execution of the program.

          The techniques that rr provides for recording the reproducer for further examination can be a useful addition to traditional core dumps and backtraces, which give a snapshot of an issue at a particular moment. The rr recording can provide a way for developers to further investigate intermittent problems where only some application runs fail.

          Let’s see how to set up rr and use it in an example to better illustrate its utility.

        • Comparison of Fedora 34 and Ubuntu 21.04

          Two great operating systems released April 2021, they are, Ubuntu Hirsute Hippo and Fedora 34. This article helps you comparing between both from the basics, technologies, and conveniences they offer to us. You will see here their interesting stuffs among the others like GNOME 40, Anaconda & Ubiquity, Spins & Flavors, as well as Wayland and Active Directory. This includes where to download & how to install them to your computer.

      • Debian Family

        • AIO-CM4-101 “All-in-One Pi” is a Raspberry Pi CM4 based 10.1-inch industrial PC

          We’ve previously written about Chipsee CM4-70 Industrial Pi 7-inch Panel PC based on Raspberry Pi CM4 module that is offered either as an embedded model to be integrated into the customer enclosure or as a fully integrated panel ready to be mounted into a wall or machine.

          The company has now launched another model with AIO-CM4-101 “All-in-One Pi” industrial PC offering a 10-inch touchscreen display that can be mounted by using 75x75mm VESA holes, for example on a display stand.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • File Sharing Between Linux Mint and Android Becomes Easier With Warpinator

          Last year, Linux Mint introduced the file-sharing tool ‘Warpinator’ to make it easier to transfer files between Linux PCs connected to the same network.

          In case you haven’t used Warpinator before, it is also one of the things that you should know after installing Linux Mint.

          Now, it looks like it is also possible to transfer files between your Linux Mint PC and your Android device using Warpinator.

        • Ubuntu 21.10 “Impish Indri” Development Begins, Daily Builds Available Now

          I was slightly disappointed at the lack of enough new features in the recent release of Ubuntu 21.04. However, Canonical is set to change that with the upcoming release of Ubuntu 21.10 ‘Impish Indri‘.

          It is slated to have a variety of new features, including the recently released Gnome 40/41, GCC 11, and more usage of the Flutter toolkit.

        • Linux Mint 18.x Series Is No Longer Supported. Time for an Upgrade!

          Linux Mint 18.x are no longer officially supported and will not receive any security updates from this month onwards.

          It was originally based on Ubuntu 16.04, which reached the end of life as well. If you are using Ubuntu 16.04, you can explore what you need to do.

          Even though you have a paid option to opt for extended security updates for Ubuntu, there is nothing that you can do for Linux Mint if you want to continue using it for your business or workplace.

        • Ubuntu Blog: Ubuntu 16.04 LTS transitions to Extended Security Maintenance (ESM)

          Ubuntu 16.04 LTS ‘Xenial Xerus’ transitions into the extended security maintenance (ESM) support phase at the end of April 2021 from its standard, five-year maintenance window for Ubuntu long term support (LTS) releases. Xenial Xerus is still supported until April 2024 with Extended Security Maintenance (ESM) through Ubuntu Advantage for Infrastructure, and on the public cloud with Ubuntu Pro for AWS, Azure and Google Cloud. ESM is also available to personal users on up to three machines and Ubuntu members on 50 machines. Ubuntu 16.04 is a Common Criteria certified operating system, providing access to FIPS 140-2 certified cryptographic modules with a solid history of timely security fixes.

          Ubuntu long term support (LTS) releases provide a stable, enterprise platform for development and production, with five years of guaranteed public maintenance available. Once the public Standard Security Maintenance window comes to a close, Ubuntu LTS releases have an additional three to five years of support (depending upon the release) through ESM, in addition to providing a built-in upgrade in-place path to the next LTS release.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Taisei, a free and open source fan game based on Touhou Project has a new update out

        A little bullet hell / shoot ‘em up for your Monday morning wake up call? Taisei, a free and open source fan game based on the Touhou Project has a fresh release.

        It’s not a game series I’m personally familiar with, so I had to do a fair bit of research on this one to get some basics. As it turns out, it’s incredibly popular. It’s spawned a number of fan games, like the popular commercial title Touhou Luna Nights. Taisei is free though, open source and cross-platform and looks quite high-quality too. If you love a challenge and bullet hell, this could be your next game.

      • Free Audio Editor Audacity Has Been Acquired By Muse Group

        The company that already owns the music notation software MuseScore and the Ultimate Guitar community has announced its acquisition of Audacity, the popular free audio editing software.

        Muse Group is now the owner of Audacity, but the famous free/libre audio editor will stay free/libre. Audacity is listed as a projects on the company’s website, but the official Audacity website makes no mention of the change.

        Ultimate Guitar was founded in 1998 by Eugeny Naidenov. Naidenov acquired MuseScore in 2017 and he will continue on with the company in the role of Muse Group chairman.

      • Education

      • Programming/Development

        • AMD Zen 3 Scheduler Model Finally Added To LLVM/Clang – Phoronix

          While last minute AMD Zen 3 “znver3″ improvements managed to make it for GCC 11 that was recently released, the recent debut of LLVM 12.0 wasn’t so lucky on the Zen 3 support front. There was the very basic enablement that landed in LLVM 12 but now the more complete support isn’t expected until LLVM 13 this autumn.

          The initial “-march=znver3″ support made it into LLVM 12 but the Zen 3 tuned scheduler model hadn’t landed even though the initial scheduler model updates were posted for review in January. It was only this weekend that the Zen 3 scheduler model has now landed within LLVM Git for LLVM 13.0 that will debut as stable in September~October or slightly before that if making a LLVM 12.0.1 release with it back-ported.

        • New features in OpenMP 5.0 and 5.1

          OpenMP is an API consisting of compiler directives and library routines for high-level parallelism in C and C++, as well as Fortran. Version 5.1 of OpenMP was released in November 2020 and version 5.0 was released in November 2018. This article discusses the new features from OpenMP 5.0 which are implemented in GCC 11, and some new OpenMP 5.1 features.

        • DevOps vs Software Engineer: What’s the Difference?

          Software Engineers rule the IT planet. But during this era of DevOps, DevOps Engineers have also quickly emerged as the backbone of the IT industry.

          Some of these DevOps Engineers are here in the industry with a fresh start while others have evolved from being Software Engineers themselves.

          The roles and responsibilities of DevOps and Software Development overlaps in many areas, so it is easier to get confused between the two.

          I’ll explain the difference between DevOps and Software Engineer. Before you look into these roles with an industrial point of view, it is essential to learn these areas of expertise individually.

        • Learn the Lisp programming language in 2021

          People who love thinking about the design of programming languages often love Lisp because of how its syntax and data share the same structure: Lisp code is essentially a list of lists, and its name is an acronym for LISt Processing. People who love thinking about the aesthetics of programming languages often hate Lisp because of its frequent use of parentheses for scoping; in fact, it’s a common joke that Lisp stands for Lots of Irritating Superfluous Parentheses.

          Whether you love or hate its design philosophies, Lisp is an interesting glimpse at the past and, thanks to Clojure and Guile, into the future. You might be surprised how much Lisp code there is lurking within big codebases in any given industry, so it’s a good idea to have at least a passing familiarity with the language.

  • Leftovers

    • Health/Nutrition

    • Integrity/Availability

    • Defence/Aggression

    • Environment

      • Biden’s Climate Proposals: Tiptoeing Across the Starting Line

        This was a welcome change from life under the previous president, who had rejected all action on climate, even the toothless Paris emissions pledges (known to bureaucrats everywhere as “Nationally Determined Contributions,” or NDCs). Yet there are at least three things wrong with Biden’s climate vision: a 50 percent emissions reduction by 2030 is too slow; the “net zero emissions by 2050” goal is no more than a euphemism for continued burning of fossil fuels; and the president has not articulated any strategy or mechanism for achieving even these overly modest goals. In other words, there’s no plan in the Biden plan.

        The only strategy, it seems, is to infuse the U.S. economy with trillions of dollars of funds for energy and other infrastructure, then hand the keys over to the corporate sector and wait for them to figure out how to wean the economy off of fossil fuels.

      • America, China, and the Climate Dinosaur

        With the exception of fossil fuel beneficiaries, most of the leaders of the world are taking climate change, if not seriously, at least under advisement. They observe the effects of higher temperatures, increasing destructive forest fires, rising sea water levels, thunderstorms, and more difficulties in raising food and catching fish.

        The UN Panel on Climate Change informed the world leaders in 2018 that things are going from bad to worse. Some weather and climate extremes mirror temperatures in the range of 1.50 Celsius above the pre-industrial age temperature (1850-1900).

      • Energy

      • Wildlife/Nature

        • Opinion | Hey Conservationists! Got Hope?

          Hope is often touted as an important ingredient in conservation success. Our research found that it’s vital — but only if it’s combined with another key element.

    • Finance

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • The chilling effect versus attempts to fix things

        One of the weird patterns I keep seeing in management is that some of the folks with those jobs care more about what people say than what they do. They want everything to look happy and shiny and nice, even when things are broken and need help. They don’t want you complaining about something, *especially* not in some venue where other managers might see it.

      • The Honest Troubleshooting Code of Conduct

        Yesterday, I wrote a little about what happens when companies have a pervasive culture of shutting down attempts to talk about things that aren’t seen as completely positive. I mentioned there was more to the story, and this is part two.

      • Italian rapper Fedez accuses state TV of censorship attempt

        Fedez alleged that the TV executive asked him to omit the names of politicians he planned to criticise during his performance at Saturday’s concert, which was aired by Rai 3.

    • Freedom of Information/Freedom of the Press

      • Truth Assange face mask on World Press Freedom Day
      • Can Afghanistan’s Free Press Survive?

        Half were women working for Enikass Radio and TV, an independent news and entertainment station in Jalalabad, the capital of Nangarhar province, which has been a repeated target of one of the many militant groups that operate in Afghanistan.

        The victims join a long list of media worker killings; the AJSC counts at least 74 between 2013 and 2020.

        The increase in violence and threats is having its intended effect. Dozens have left journalism and, in some cases, the country. The rest face a gut-wrenching decision: Self-censor or be the next victim.

      • Myanmar Journalists ‘Living in Fear’ as Junta Curbs Freedoms

        Not long after enjoying their first taste of freedom, Myanmar’s journalists say they are barely able to function, as the soldiers who toppled the country’s democratically elected government three months ago have moved to choke off the flow of information through intimidation, arrests, and violence.

        In interviews with Radio Free Asia, or RFA, multiple reporters, editors, and photographers — speaking from hiding and on condition of anonymity to protect their safety — say the junta that deposed Aung San Suu Kyi and her government on Feb. 1 has made it dangerous and difficult to gather news about the biggest story of their lives.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

      • Liberals and NDP Block Debate On Updated Charter of Rights and Freedoms Review of Bill C-10

        The Liberal government was the one that established requirements for Charter statements to “ensure the rights and freedoms of Canadians are respected throughout the law-making process.” While the Liberals argue that the statements are not updated, given their emphasis on Charter compliance, it is discouraging to see its Members of Parliament – supported by the NDP – move to stop debate on the critical issue of freedom of expression and the Charter at committee.

    • Monopolies

      • When Amazon raises wages, nearby firms follow suit

        These correlations suggest that labour markets are not working as they should. In a competitive market determined by supply and demand, wages would be governed by the marginal productivity of labour, or the additional output generated by an additional worker. Any deviation from this market wage, by Amazon or any other employer, would not affect the wages of anyone else. The fact that other firms respond to the wage policies of Amazon and Walmart suggests that these big employers have monopsony power that allows them to set local wages.

      • Compulsory Licensing Patent Law Series [Ed: An alternative to compulsory licensing is royalty free, but monopolists don't like thinking along those lies. They'd say the sky might fall.]

        A patent owner has the right to exclude others from practicing its hard-earned patent. Typically, this exclusion covers actions such as making, using, selling, offering for sale, or importing the patented invention. In many jurisdictions, the patent owner has a legal obligation to work its invention in exchange for this exclusive monopoly. However, under certain circumstances, a patent owner may be obligated to grant a compulsory license (e.g., a non-exclusive license) to allow a third party to work the patent without the patent owner’s consent, in exchange for good and valuable consideration.

      • Trade secrets in the wild (Part 2): The reporting problem [Ed: DTSA and similar are a form of monopoly that make human memory, thinking etc. a 'crime'. Too many issues there...]

        Trade secrets are secret. While innovation policies have happily expanded and harmonised the protection of trade secrets (e.g. in 2016, the American DTSA and the EU Directive), actual evidence of trade secrets, in an era of evidence-based policy, is scant. This disjunction between the structures of harmonization and paucity of evidence means that governments are left developing trade secret policy with limited insights into what is happening in practice. Still not convinced? Read on.

        The first rule of the Trade Secret Club is: Do Not Talk about the Trade Secret Club. Companies are often reluctant to discuss their secrets with researchers or policymakers for fear of compromising their protection, lest they lose control over the secret. This causes a long-term, persistent problem in economic policymaking, as governments seek to protect that which is not readily cognizable.

        This state of affairs reminds this blogger of the ‘I-know-it-when-I-see-it’ approach, which involves a lot of hand-waving and suggestions of a precision that is otherwise lacking. ‘Trust me’ on my trade secrets is not a good enough argument from policy stakeholders.

        But the picture is more muddled: even if trade secret theft/misappropriation occurs, firms may not want to compound the damage by reporting the loss. The immediate fall out from dealing with such breaches includes mitigation, investigation and legal costs. However, the more insidious damage comes from the potential for long-term strategic loss of compromised IP and reputational damage. Moreover, acknowledging the mere existence of a trade secret can convey valuable information to competitors about a company’s activities.


        Trade secrecy can also be used to limit transparency. For instance, trade secrecy has been used as a reason to prevent criminal defendants from assessing algorithms that directly impact their sentencing (per an MIT Technology Review article). Under-reporting can exacerbate these unintended consequences, as the few reports that do come through may not represent the whole picture.

        The consequence of all of the foregoing is that, despite policymaking operating largely in an evidence vacuum, trade secrets disputes are growing, and rather quickly. If American litigation trends are anything to go by, trade secrets litigation increased at 14% annually from 2002-2012, and 1,400 cases in federal courts were filed in 2019, and efforts to further expand trade secrecy protection continue. Will this turn out to be all sound and fury, or is it just the tip of the trade secret iceberg?

      • Patents

        • Thierry Breton and Clément Beaune to pay Luxembourg a working visit

          Thierry Breton will later be received at the palace by Grand Duke Henri.

          Breton will also participate in the inauguration of the headquarters of the European Joint Undertaking for High Performance Computing (EuroHPC) .

        • In 2020, the EU Patent Office Rejected an Apple Invention relating to Under-Display Optical Fingerprint Technology – Patently Apple

          One of Apple’s April patent applications that was filed in Europe titled “Under-Display Optical Fingerprint Sensor with Narrow Field-of-View (NFV) Collimator and a Thin-Film Transistor (TFT)-based Organic Imager” was definitely different read. In it, we read that the EU Patent Office in Germany rejected Apple’s patent…

        • Videoconferencing At the EPO – Springboard Into a Digital Age? [Ed: "Springboard" and violation of the EPC aren't the same thing. Using COVID as an excuse to crush the law is not acceptable and many law firms are not tolerating either. The Office wants to bulldoze the law.]

          The question of which communication channels people trust more in the case of inconsistent messages was investigated in a number of studies conducted by the Iranian-American psychologist Albert Mehrabian. His formula, repeatedly replicated, according to which 7% of people trust the spoken word, 38% trust vocal expression and 55% trust body language, demonstrates the importance of non-verbal communication channels that are often lost in virtual settings. (1)

          The Enlarged Board of Appeal of the EPO will soon decide on an interesting question: may oral proceedings before the EPO in principle be conducted by videoconference, even against the will of the parties?

        • The Life Sciences Law Review – Chapter Russia [Ed: Regarding "Aspects of the life sciences industry related to intellectual property (IP) are codified in the Russian Civil Code," they're not property. If you mean patents, say patents, not misnomers.]

          The Russian life sciTLR-Accred-White-22021.jpgences framework is primarily shaped by the Federal Law of 12 April 2010 No. 61-FZ on turnover of medicines (the Pharmaceutical Law) and the Federal Law of 21 November 2011 No. 323-FZ on the principles of healthcare of citizens in the Russian Federation (the Healthcare Law). The Ministry of Healthcare of the Russian Federation (MoH) is the primary regulatory body and its subsidiary, the Federal Service for Surveillance in Healthcare (Roszdravnadzor), is the enforcement authority.
          From 1 January 2021, the registration of medicines is governed by the Eurasian legislation, namely under the Eurasian Economic Commission Council Decision of 3 November 2016, ‘On rules of registration and examination of drugs for medical use’ (the Eurasian Rules).
          More detailed aspects of life sciences regulation are provided in the by-laws of the government and the MoH (including the good practices).
          Aspects of the life sciences industry related to intellectual property (IP) are codified in the Russian Civil Code.

      • Copyrights

        • Relying on a Torrent Site for Vaccination Advice Is a Terrible Idea

          Torrent site MagnetDL is warning its users against taking Covid vaccines, pointing them to a copy of the controversial ‘Plandemic’ documentary. While we’re not medical experts, we know that taking health advice from a torrent site is not a great idea. In fact, it can be quite dangerous.

Adding, Seaming Together, Merging, or Concatenating Videos From the Command Line With FFMPEG (Scripting for Streamlining of Workflows)

Posted in Videos at 11:19 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Video download link

Summary: In order to enrich the looks of videos with almost no extra time/effort (all scripted, no GUIs should be needed) use ffmpeg with the concat operator; but there are several big gotchas, namely lack of sound and need for consistency across formats/codecs and even sampling rates

TODAY we focused on some site ‘logistics’ and especially dealt with video and sound. The goal is to automate some tasks and/or improve the presentation of multimedia using Free software. Free as in freedom…

Frankly, the tool we used to generate some video segments was an “online” thing called Canva (never heard of it before, but it seems powerful enough and doesn’t require downloading anything, logging in etc. — not even an E-mail address). On the face of it, problem solved! But no… it gets trickier from then on. I spent many hours working around barriers.

Well, ffmpeg is very powerful and extremely versatile. However, as it turns out, ffmpeg will first need to convert .mp4 files downloaded from there (Canva) so as to incorporate sound, even if it’s just mute (inaudible sound track).

For this reason and for that purpose, as per people who had similar issues concatenation tracks that lack sound (merged or combined with some that do have sound), run a command as follows (depending on the sampling rate, 48000 in my case, or else the sound/pitch will be funny).

ffmpeg -i "file.mp4" -f lavfi -i anullsrc=cl=mono:r=48000 -shortest -y "file-new.mp4"

Assuming you now have a track that is compatible with what you’d merge it with, ensure that the original is moreover re-encoded for it to be applied consistently. As I always record as WebM, I need to then run (for a video like the above):

ffmpeg -i video-ffmpeg-concat.webm -c:v libx264 -preset slow video-ffmpeg-concat.mp4

This yields something suitable as it must be strictly compatible in sampling, codec type, and other factors. That’s a limitation in ffmpeg. This is a common issue for a lot of people and it took me hours to overcome (many trials and errors). I wished to document this as other people too got stuck (many forum posts).

Depending on which files you wish to concatenate with (and the order), write down the ‘recipe’, e.g. recipe.txt, containing

file file-new.mp4
file testing-6.mp4
file outro-new.mp4

Relative paths too can be prepended (e.g. file Videos/outro-new.mp4). The ffmpeg documentation explains the syntax better. There’s a lot more about concat [1, 2].

Then run everything as follows:

ffmpeg -f concat -i recipe.txt output.webm

The reason the assembly of files is done with .mp4 files (to yield a WebM) is the insistence of Canva that downloaded videos are either MP4 or GIF. There must be some better ways and I’ll improve this over time (this is all still very fresh in the mind; I’ve spent a lot of time on this).

From now on we have the ability to make videos that are 1) smaller in size because of re-encoding with strong compression and 2) have a little bit of extra context. We’ll improve this over time and push to git.

Update: This is what the outcome can look like (mind start and end of clip).

Video download link

IRC Proceedings: Sunday, May 02, 2021

Posted in IRC Logs at 2:16 am by Needs Sunlight

HTML5 logs

HTML5 logs

#techrights log as HTML5

#boycottnovell log as HTML5

HTML5 logs

HTML5 logs

#boycottnovell-social log as HTML5

#techbytes log as HTML5

text logs

text logs

#techrights log as text

#boycottnovell log as text

text logs

text logs

#boycottnovell-social log as text

#techbytes log as text

Enter the IRC channels now

IPFS Mirrors

CID Description Object type
 QmSYzoqgtJMADnVtjkexcxuoFQTDiecjvBZRc57UuSpAJZ IRC log for #boycottnovell
(full IRC log as HTML)
HTML5 logs
 QmdZ3XvCUsqZYq1fL2MizSQvNg9gi5umeLCrAZQFiPwYL4 IRC log for #boycottnovell
(full IRC log as plain/ASCII text)
text logs
 QmaddFZ8PGaNZKUmY1A3z4UDc5zztZ7M7D56pZoUDNeSkU IRC log for #boycottnovell-social
(full IRC log as HTML)
HTML5 logs
 QmPJUv5JYN45ujJom2oLMXYHCmnZ7ptmmHYmU4MG5WgBtf IRC log for #boycottnovell-social
(full IRC log as plain/ASCII text)
text logs
 QmeGzt7G3GJHD519LgeHwiqdfFvAPvRvPVitTPkY3aMrZb IRC log for #techbytes
(full IRC log as HTML)
HTML5 logs
 QmWfDVJJ5qxNqSBogQbv27cSNVV6n6MSJaqxSikQJd6odU IRC log for #techbytes
(full IRC log as plain/ASCII text)
text logs
 QmXbaMfZ816uDekpLPJXhg3UMQQK1C494451czyhX18Sut IRC log for #techrights
(full IRC log as HTML)
HTML5 logs
 QmaK6aHtDsqHrPnqWk79JTmMob1knioyQQnAcCQM7WcdpH IRC log for #techrights
(full IRC log as plain/ASCII text)
text logs

IPFS logo

Bulletin for Yesterday

Local copy | CID (IPFS): QmW6jLQ2hv6Ar6tpZ2qZPAdRcM8FyWxbwros9pg8VRRi28

StatCounter: In May 2021 Windows Market Share Falls Sharply to Just 28%, Whereas GNU/Linux Climbs to 2.31% in Desktops/Laptops

Posted in GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Windows at 12:04 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Summary: StatCounter isn’t an authority on truth; nevertheless, it helps expose some trends and it shows that Windows is consistently falling, whereas GNU/Linux moves up steadily

We're doing fine, thanks
Just fine!

Sliding down the charts it’s Windows, again, as shown below (a rather dramatic one-month drop)

Windows 28%

GNU/Linux market share (scale on the left is % of desktop/laptop platforms)

GNU/Linux rising

Data for download (ODF). Compare to last month.

“First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win.”

(Usually attributed to) Mahatma Gandhi

“My initial evaluation of Windows 7 shows that it’s really just Vista with a fresh coat of paint.”

Randall Kennedy, 2008

“I’d put the Linux phenomenon really as threat No. 1.”

Steve Ballmer, 2001

“Microsoft sees what’s coming. Things like Word and Excel sort of like a drug now getting ready to go generic.”

Market Watch

“Pamela Jones [...] has told Infoworld that Microsoft will be the next SCO Group”


“The first wave will attack the perception that Linux is free.”

Brian Valentine, Microsoft

“What we’re seeing though now can be loosely described as patent terrorism, where people are using their patent horde as a threat [...] It’s almost like a cold war stand over tactic; where I have these patents and if you breach these patents, I’m going to come after you and sue you.”

James Eagleton, systems product manager for Sun Microsystems

“Client software felt the slump in PC sales, and was further harmed by the shift to netbooks; many of these run Linux, which helps Microsoft not at all.”

Ars Technica (2009)

“Microsoft can’t charge $80 or $100 when there’s Linux for free on netbooks,” Rosoff said. On regular PC sales, Microsoft’s profit margins are typically about 70 percent to 80 percent, he explained.”

Microsoft Press

“We have increased our prices over the last 10 years [while] other component prices have come down and continue to come down.”

Joachim Kempin, Microsoft

“Gates looks at everything as something that should be his. He acts in any way he can to make it his. It can be an idea, market share, or a contract. There is not an ounce of conscientiousness or compassion in him. The notion of fairness means nothing to him. The only thing he understands is leverage.”

Philippe Kahn, Founder and former CEO of Borland

“It’s easier for our software to compete with Linux when there’s piracy than when there’s not.”

Bill Gates

“As long as they are going to steal it, we want them to steal ours.”

Bill Gates

“The government is not trying to destroy Microsoft, it’s simply seeking to compel Microsoft to obey the law. It’s quite revealing that Mr. Gates equates the two.”

Government official

“I have no idea what you’re talking about when you say ‘ask.’”

Bill Gates, in his deposition for the Microsoft antitrust trial

“Gates’ gimmick of becoming a philanthropist repeats the Rockefeller scam almost one to one a century later.”

Dark cloud over good works of Gates Foundation

“Microsoft allowed us to [remove Internet Explorer from Windows] but we don’t think we should have to ask permission every time we want to make some minor software modification. Windows is an operating system, not a religion.”

Gateway Computer Chairman Ted Waitt

“Injustice must be exposed, with all the tension its exposure creates, to the light of human conscience and the air of national opinion before it can be cured.”

Martin Luther King Jr.

A ransom meme
Ask Microsoft how Microsoft is doing

Links 3/5/2021: Ubuntu EoL Dates and Nitrux 1.4.0

Posted in News Roundup at 12:01 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Linux Weekly Roundup #128

      We had a full week of Linux distro releases with Fedora 34, KaOS 2021.04, Makulu Linux 2021-04-27, openSUSE 15.3 RC, Elementary OS 6.0 Beta, OpenIndiana 2021.04, antiX 19.4-testing and Artix Linux 20210426 have been released this week.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • Free Software Security Podcast/Josh Bressers: Episode 269 – Do not experiment on the Linux Kernel

        Josh and Kurt talk about the University of Minnesota experimenting on the Linux Kernel. There’s a lot to unpack in this one, but the TL;DR is you probably don’t want to experiment on the kernel.

      • Linux Action News 187

        A spicy mix of distro news, including Rocky Linux’s first milestone release, and our follow-up on the University of Minnesota’s kernel ban.

        Plus a major step in Apple M1 GPU support.

      • GNU World Order 405

        **ccache** and **clisp** from the **d** software series of Slackware. Here is a quick and simple dice roller script done in Lisp: #!/usr/bin/clisp (defun roller (num) (pprint (random (parse-integer (nth 0 num)))) ) (setf userput *args*) (setf *random-state* (make-random-state t)) (roller userput)

    • Kernel Space

      • Linux 5.12.1
        I'm announcing the release of the 5.12.1 kernel.
        All users of the 5.12 kernel series must upgrade.
        The updated 5.12.y git tree can be found at:
        	git://git.kernel.org/pub/scm/linux/kernel/git/stable/linux-stable.git linux-5.12.y
        and can be browsed at the normal kernel.org git web browser:
        greg k-h
      • Linux 5.11.18
      • Linux 5.10.34
      • Linux 5.4.116
      • OrangeFS Scores An “Extreme Performance Improvement” In Linux 5.13

        The OrangeFS open-source parallel file-system designed for cluster computing has a huge performance improvement to its read speeds with Linux 5.13.

        OrangeFS with Linux 5.13 is introducing a new readahead implementation. Due to the existing code having gone stale and “is a trainwreck now”, a new OrangeFS readahead implementation was written using XArray and the logic reworked significantly.

      • Graphics Stack

        • Alyssa Rosenzweig: Dissecting the Apple M1 GPU, part IV

          After beginning a compiler for the Apple M1 GPU, the next step is to develop a graphics driver exercising the compiler. Since the last post two weeks ago, I’ve begun a Gallium driver for the M1, implementing much of the OpenGL 2.1 and ES 2.0 specifications. With the compiler and driver together, we’re now able to run OpenGL workloads like glxgears and scenes from glmark2 on the M1 with an open source stack. We are passing about 75% of the OpenGL ES 2.0 tests in the drawElements Quality Program used to establish Khronos conformance. To top it off, the compiler and driver are now being upstreamed in Mesa!

          Gallium is a driver framework inside Mesa. It splits drivers into frontends, like OpenGL and OpenCL, and backends, like Intel and AMD. In between, Gallium has a common caching system for graphics and compute state, reducing the CPU overhead of every Gallium driver. The code sharing, central to Gallium’s design, allows high-performance drivers to be written at a low cost. For us, that means we can focus on writing a Gallium backend for Apple’s GPU and pick up OpenGL and OpenCL support “for free”.

          More sharing is possible. A key responsibility of the Gallium backend is to translate Gallium’s state objects into hardware packets, so we need a good representation of hardware packets. While packed bitfields can work, C’s bitfields have performance and safety (overflow) concerns. Hand-coded C structures lack pretty-printing needed for efficient debugging. Finally, while reverse-engineering, hand-coded C structures tend to accumulate random magic numbers in driver code, which is undesirable. These issues are not new; systems like Intel’s GenXML and Nouveau’s envytools solve them by allowing the hardware packets to be described as XML while all necessary C code is auto-generated. For Asahi, I’ve opted to use GenXML, providing a concise description of my reverse-engineering results and an ergonomic API for the driver.

        • Early Gallium3D Work Has Begun Around Apple’s M1 GPU With New “AGX” Driver

          Alyssa Rosenzweig has continued her work reverse engineering and understanding Apple’s M1 GPU with the ultimate goal of writing open-source OpenGL and Vulkan support for the Apple M1 GPU on Linux.

          Last month she began the early stages of a graphics compiler for the Apple M1 to begin tackling shaders with what information has been reverse engineered so far. Since then she has begun an early stage Gallium3D driver for the Apple M1 and beginning to focus on OpenGL 2.1 and OpenGL ES 2.0 specifications.

          It’s in a state where at least the Gallium3D code can handle glxgears and some glmark2 scenes on the Apple M1. In fact today she opened a merge request as the initial push of this “AGX” driver. This AGX Gallium3D driver was originally based on the noop Gallium3D driver with some code derived from the work on the Panfrost Gallium3D driver for Arm Mali.

    • Benchmarks

      • New, Updated Benchmarks For April From WRF To Chia + Xmrig

        As part of recent and upcoming new CPU benchmarks on Phoronix and other Linux hardware review testing, April saw more new and updated test profiles for expanding more workloads tested.

        April saw a number of new test profiles added for the Phoronix Test Suite and OpenBenchmarking.org usage whether you are reviewing computer components or for other benchmarking purposes. New test profiles added to the Phoronix Test Suite / OpenBenchmarking.org this past month included…

    • Applications

      • QEMU 6.0 Is Released With A Long List Of New Features

        QEMU 6.0 is a huge release with a very long list of improvements for everyone using this powerful multi-platform full system emulator to run operating systems for Arm, PowerPC, RISC-V, s390, SPARC, x86 and other systems QEMU supports on Linux, Windows or macOS.


        The above list of new features in QEMU 6.0 barely scratches the surface, the full QEMU 6.0 changelog is a very long read.

        The QEMU download page for Linux does not list any AppImage, Snap, .deb or .rpm packages or binaries of any kind, it simply lists instructions for installing it using the major Linux distributions repositories. All of them have some recently new QEMU version like 5.2, none have the latest 6.0 release. That leaves compiling from source as the only option if you really want QEMU 6.0 now. The source is a 102 MiB tarball that extracts to 724 MiB. Building it is, in theory, as easy as ./configure && make, but there are a lot of optional dependencies to work out. You will likely need to install a number of development packages and a number of ./configure flags like –enable-kvm (kind of important if you want to run x86-64 software on x86-64 without a huge performance penalty). You may be better off waiting until your distribution makes a QEMU 6.0 package unless you really want one of the new features right now. The actual compile will only take about 15 minutes on a Ryzen 1600X with -j 12, even thought the source tree is huge, so it is doable. Make sure to get all the dependencies in place and re-run ./configure so you don’t end up with a crippled QEMU if you decide to go that route.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • Santiago García Mantiñán: Windows and Linux software Raid dual boot BIOS machine

        One could think that nowadays having a machine with software raid doing dual boot should be easy, but… my experience showed that it is not that easy.

        Having a Windows machine do software raid is easy (I still don’t understand why it doesn’t really work like it should, but that is because I’m used to Linux software raid), and having software raid on Linux is also really easy. But doing so on a BIOS booted machine, on mbr disks (as Windows doesn’t allow GPT on BIOS) is quite a pain.

      • 14 Useful AWK Command Examples in Linux

        Awk command is the most powerful scripting language in Linux that is developed with the purpose of text processing and transforming text in a way like producing formatted reports. It is relatable to grep and sed commands as it acts as filters. AWK command doesn’t have any specific definition to its name as it is named after the surname of its original developers Alfred Aho, Peter J. Weinberger, and Brian Kernighan.

        In this article we will cover 14 awk commands which might be useful. In this context, I have the following set of data in the sample.txt file in my system.

      • How to install Docker CE on Rocky Linux 8

        Docker community edition is open-source software available to install on almost all popular operating systems. We can easily install various container-based software to perform various common and server-side tasks. However, to use docker, we first have to install it and here we will show how to do that in Rocky Linux.

        Apart from the Community edition, Docker is available for Enterprise as well. Althouth the community edition has all the functions required to operate containers and can be used on servers and on development and test machines. If you can do without enterprise support and some management functions, then you can go for the Open-source.

      • How To Install Gulp.js on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Gulp.js on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS. For those of you who didn’t know, Gulp is a toolkit that helps developers in the automation of painful workflow during the development. Gulp lets us automate processes and run repetitive tasks with ease. It provides a feature of piping output from one task as an input to the next.

        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 Gulp.js on Ubuntu 20.04 (Focal Fossa). You can follow the same instructions for Ubuntu 18.04, 16.04, and any other Debian-based distribution like Linux Mint.

      • How to install Crocotile 3D on a Chromebook

        Today we are looking at how to install Crocotile 3D 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.

        This tutorial will only work on Chromebooks with an Intel or AMD CPU (with Linux Apps Support) and not those with an ARM64 architecture CPU.

      • Things To Do After Installing Fedora 34

        Fedora releases a new version in approximately every 6 months. Each now version is supported with updates for 13 months in total. The distribution is a good place to get the latest stable software and technologies consistently.

        The latest stable version is currently Fedora 34, you can download it from the Fedora official website.

        If you are a new Fedora user, you may be wondering about what to do after installation. The guide will help you through this part. No matter the supported Fedora version you use, you can apply everything on this list.

      • Rice Your Terminal With Fetch Master 6000

        Fetch Master 6000 is an ASCII art “fetch” program similar to the popular Neofetch program. It offers a number of different ASCII art characters and a information box that is customizable. And the best part about it is that it is only 316 lines of code!

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

    • Distributions

      • The 10 Best Linux Server Distributions

        Linux is one of the driving factors behind today’s ever-growing internet scene. In fact, over 70% of all websites are powered by Unix, with Linux taking 58% of that number. The sheer amount of features provided by Linux-based distros make them suitable for web, file, and DNS servers alongside enterprise infrastructures.

        To help our readers choose the best Linux server distributions, we’re outlining the top 10 options available to you.

      • Reviews

        • Review: Ubuntu 21.04

          Like clockwork, every April sees the release of a new version of Ubuntu and all the official variants. This release of Ubuntu, Hirsute Hippo, is noteworthy for its decision to not include the new desktop layout featured in GNOME 40. Instead, Ubuntu 21.04 continues to use version 3.38 of GNOME Shell. This means the desktop experience remains much the same as it has been in recent Ubuntu releases.


          Ubuntu 21.04 is a very solid release. Users of new releases of other GNOME-based distributions might be experiencing the new GNOME 40 interface, but Ubuntu 21.04′s GNOME 3.38 desktop environment is functional and familiar. I do look forward to seeing how Ubuntu might tweak GNOME Shell 40 (or whatever the current post-40 GNOME version is at the time) in the future, but can find no fault with the decision to stick with 3.38 for now. The few issues I had with release are so minor they are barely worth repeating, but it would have been nice to see some non-hippo wallpapers.

          Overall, I would recommend Ubuntu 21.04 to anyone who is okay with the short 9 month support window. If you are already a user of non-LTS Ubuntu releases, the upgrade from 20.10 to 21.04 is something you should feel comfortable doing as soon as possible. The new features, while not massive, are very nice quality of life improvements. Distro hoppers might be slightly more interested in distributions that feature GNOME 40, but I would still recommend they at least try out Ubuntu 21.04 to see what it has to offer.

      • New Releases

        • Changelog: Nitrux 1.4.0

          We are pleased to announce the launch of Nitrux 1.4.0. This new version brings together the latest software updates, bug fixes, performance improvements, and ready-to-use hardware support.

          Nitrux 1.4.0 is available for immediate download.

      • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandriva/OpenMandriva Family

        • teamviewer updated to 15.17.6 » PCLinuxOS

          TeamViewer provides easy, fast and secure remote access and meeting solutions to Linux, Windows PCs, Apple PCs and various other platforms.

        • media-downloader updated to 1.3.0 » PCLinuxOS

          This project is a Qt/C++ based frontend to youtube-dl and it can be used to download any media file supported by youtube-dl.

        • vlc updated to 3.0.13 » PCLinuxOS

          VLC (VideoLAN Client) is a media player that can play MPEG1, MPEG2 and MPEG4 (aka DivX) files, DVDs, VCDs, SVCDs, from a satellite card, from a stream sent by VLS (VideoLAN Server), from another VLC, or from a Web server.

        • evolution updated to 3.40.1 » PCLinuxOS

          Evolution is the GNOME mailer, calendar, contact manager and communications tool. The tools which make up Evolution will be tightly integrated with one another and act as a seamless personal information-management tool.

        • basilisk updated to 2021.04.27 » PCLinuxOS

          Basilisk is a free and Open Source XUL-based web browser, featuring the well-known Firefox-style interface and operation. It is based on the Goanna layout and rendering engine (a fork of Gecko) and builds on the Unified XUL Platform (UXP), which in turn is a fork of the Mozilla code base without Servo or Rust.

      • Debian Family

        • Junichi Uekawa: First email from my new machine.

          First email from my new machine. I didn’t have my desktop Debian machine for a long time and now I have one set up.

        • [EasyOS] Locale fixed in containers

          I am testing Racy and XenialPup running in containers, chasing down that corrupted-wallpaper problem — that I thought was fixed, but isn’t.
          But then discovered that locale is broken on those desktops, getting the message about only able to run applications in C locale.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Ubuntu 21.10 Daily Builds Now Available to Download

          First came the codename, then development opened, now Ubuntu 21.10 daily builds are available to download.

          The installer images linked below arrive a little bit earlier than I was expecting (and a bit earlier than normal, based on previous releases). But progress comes as it does, and Ubuntu’s developers seem super keen to get started on this cycle.

          Now, you’re reading this article on May 2021 — if you’re reading from the future than I have hopefully popped back and replaced this section. For now however, there’s not much to see in the daily builds. The first few weeks are spent getting imports synced, tooling updated, and any requisite foundations properly plumbed in.

          All of the good stuff will follow.

        • You can download Ubuntu Linux 21.10 ‘Impish Indri’ daily builds right now!

          Ubuntu 21.10 won’t get a stable release until October of 2021. In fact, we know the exact date the Linux-based operating system should be made available — October 14. In addition to that date, we also know what the distribution’s codename will be — Impish Indri.

          Unfortunately, we only just entered the month of May, meaning Ubuntu 21.10 won’t be available to download — in stable form, at least — for about five more months. According to the release schedule, the beta release of Impish Indri won’t even be released until September at the earliest. Sigh. What is an Ubuntu enthusiast supposed to do?

        • Kubuntu 18.04 LTS Bionic Beaver reaches end of Kubuntu support

          As the recently released Kubuntu 21.04 with beautiful Plasma 5.21 makes its way into the world, inevitably other things come to their end.

          Kubuntu 18.04 LTS was released in April 2018, and reached ‘End of Life’ for its 3 years of flavour support on 1st May 2021. All Kubuntu users should therefore switch to a newer supported release.

        • Ubuntu 16.04 Hits End of Life, Users Should Upgrade Now

          Running Ubuntu 16.04 LTS? Hopefully you’re not as it reached end of life on April 29,2021.

          What does that mean? Bluntly: no more security updates, and no further Mozilla Firefox releases through the regular Ubuntu repos. If something critical breaks in the desktop release it will now stay broken.

          Well, kinda.

          See, companies unable (or simply unwilling) to ditch this version of Ubuntu can opt-in — i.e. pay — to receive extended support maintenance, known as ESM. Ubuntu 16.04 ESM is supported until 2024 with critical security patches. More detail on ESM can be found on the Ubuntu website.

        • Ubuntu 16.04 Reaches End of Life. Still Using It? Here Are Your Options!

          If you or your organization is still using Ubuntu 16.04, it’s time to evaluate your options.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Jean-François Fortin Tam: Introducing Regento, marketing for FLOSS-centric companies and transitioning industries

        Some may remember I previously introduced the Atypica collective as a dedicated place where I could showcase some of my video production work (instead of having everything and the kitchen sink into my own website).

        Launching Atypica was a long-standing project of mine that had been put on the back-burner because of some of my intensive CMO work in recent years (such as this, for instance). Awakening from the lucid dream allowed me to re-enter a long R&D phase where I could not only shave a ton of “infrastructure and productivity” yaks (that’s a story for another blog post, including the ridiculous tale of the months of work it took to fix my personal blog), but also realign my business objectives and pick up where I had left off “the last time”, hence the delayed announcement of Atypica’s website launch.

        But Atypica, besides being the kind of initiative that works much better outside a pandemic, is merely one of my creative interests, and therefore part of my broader business orientations.


        When it comes to strategic work, I am very picky about who I surround myself with, so I am super excited to highlight the fact that—as can be seen in the Regento about/team page—I have partnered up with Halle Baksh, a good friend of mine whose business experience and wisdom I have great admiration for; our personalities also have great affinity. She is a wonderful human being (not a rogue A.I. like me) and a kindred spirit, and I look forward to continue working with her on making the world a slightly better place, one client’s business at a time.

      • Programming/Development

        • Perl/Raku

        • Python

          • Top 5 Best Python IDEs and Code Editors for Linux, Windows, & MacOS [Ed: Almost half are Microsoft and even proprietary software, so not a good list]

            This article will guide you through some of the apps that you can use as IDEs or code editors when working with Python. Top 5 best Python IDEs and code editors for Linux, Windows, & MacOS. Being a programmer requires writing code maybe 99% of the time, which is why it is really important to choose the best editor that suits your needs.

            A programmer is not too different from that, except that, to write the code, they will need a code editor that has been specifically designed to recognize the code.

  • Leftovers

    • Health/Nutrition

      • White House considering intellectual property waiver for COVID-19 vaccines [Ed: Patients are more important than patents]

        The White House is considering options for maximizing global production and supply of COVID-19 vaccines at the lowest cost, including backing a proposed waiver of intellectual property rights, but no decision has been made, press secretary Jen Psaki said on Tuesday.

        “There are a lot of different ways to do that. Right now, that’s one of the ways, but we have to assess what makes the most sense,” Psaki said, adding that U.S. officials were studying whether it would be more effective to boost existing manufacturing of the vaccines in the United States.

        U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai had not made a recommendation on the issue, and President Joe Biden had not made a decision, she said.

        U.S. lawmakers and nonprofit groups are heaping pressure on the Biden administration to back the temporary patent waiver to help poor countries contain the pandemic as India and other countries battle a massive surge in cases.

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Security

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • YouTube Is Still Being DESTROYED By Spam Bots

              About 6 months back I did a video on the spam bots that were taking over YouTube, since then that specific scam ended but that doesn’t mean the bots are gone. In fact the spam bot problem on YouTube is worse than it’s ever been.

    • Finance

      • Bitcoin Core 0.21.1 Is Released With Speedy Trial Taproot Activation

        The latest Bitcoin Core wallet for the Bitcoin network and BTC currency on it contains speedy trial activation code for a technology called Taproot that aims to make different kinds of Bitcoin transactions look mostly the same. Taproot requires a “soft fork” which will take place at block 709632 if enough Bitcoin miners adopt this or other versions signaling Taproot activation.


        Bitcoin Core is the de-facto Bitcoin reference implementation with roots going back to the original Bitcoin wallet by “Satoshi Nakamoto”. It is an ideal Bitcoin wallet for everyone who wants to wait two weeks for a digital currency wallet to sync so they can pay $25-60 in “network fees” to send digital BTC currency that will arrive after one to two hours, or 6 “blocks”.

        The big highlight in Bitcoin Core 0.21.1 is the “Speedy Trial” activation of a technology called Taproot that will lead to a “soft fork” of the Bitcoin network at block 709632 if a majority of the “decentralized” Bitcoin miners located in a single province in China adopt the new version.

    • Digital Restrictions (DRM)

      • Translation: What the Biblical Tower of Babel can teach us about Netflix

        Today, Netflix offers dubbing in 34 languages and subtitles in several more. [This beats the translation apparatus of the EU itself, which works to make contents available in the Union’s 24 official languages.] It means that a police drama written in Luxembourgish, (a form of Moselle Franconian language part of the wider group of West Germanic languages), is now available via streaming in multiple languages.

        All of this gives proof paid to the observation made by the Italian author, Umberto Eco, that the language of Europe is translation.

        Why is this important? Jean Monnet, perhaps the father of the now- EU, was reported to have one observed: “I were to do it over again from scratch, I would start with culture.”

        Economic integration is certainly crucial but, as has been observed with increasing intensity, cultural integration may be equally important. Being dispersed from the Tower of Babel and left to our distinct national cultural and linguistic devices is hardly a formula for integration, no matter how glorious the resultant cultural outputs.


        First, streaming companies are required that 30% of their viewing catalog derives from the EU, and not to then simply bury these contents in a “digital cupboard”, but to genuinely promote them.

      • Ex-Netflix Executive Convicted in Bribery-Kickback Scheme

        A former Netflix Inc. executive was convicted of taking kickbacks from vendors in exchange for approving millions of dollars in contracts for products and services, federal prosecutors said.

        A jury on Friday found Michael Kail, a former vice president of information technology operations, guilty of wire and mail fraud and money laundering after a two-week trial, according to a statement issued by the U.S. Attorney’s office in San Francisco.

        “Bribery undermines fair competition and innovation in any business arena, and particularly Silicon Valley’s highly competitive environment of cutting-edge innovation,” Acting U.S. Attorney Stephanie M. Hinds said in the statement.

        Kail used his influence at the company to rig its contracts with technology vendors “to unlock a stream of cash and stock kickbacks to himself,” Hinds said.

        Kail’s lawyer, Julia Mezhinsky Jayne, said in a statement that he will appeal the “inexplicable” verdict, which she said is unsupported by evidence and driven by Netflix.

    • Monopolies

      • Apple’s app store goes on trial in threat to ‘walled garden’

        On Monday, Apple faces one of its most serious legal threats in recent years: A trial that threatens to upend its iron control over its app store, which brings in billions of dollars each year while feeding more than 1.6 billion iPhones, iPads, and other devices.

        The federal court case is being brought by Epic Games, maker of the popular video game Fortnite. Epic wants to topple the so-called “walled garden” of the app store, which Apple started building 13 years ago as part of a strategy masterminded by co-founder Steve Jobs.

      • Patents

        • Do we need artificial investors?
          [Ed: This repeats old mythology like: “From a legal perspective, the patent system is the core mechanism to foster innovation.”

          Artificial intelligence (AI) has started to unleash a new industrial revolution. It represents a significant technology advantage which already impacts today’s products and services and will drive tomorrow’s industries. Its key importance to the technological progress of future societies is beyond doubt and is reflected by a boom in patent applications on AI technology since 2013 in various industry sectors.

          From a legal perspective, the patent system is the core mechanism to foster innovation. The prospect of a patent is supposed to induce innovative behaviour. However, the founders of intellectual property (IP) law never considered that a machine could one day autonomously come up with a new, useful, and non-obvious idea. Historically, the patent system has been built on a paradigm of human inventorship.

          Just recently, various courts and patent offices confirmed that a machine cannot be the inventor of a patentable invention. The decisions concerned a machine called DABUS. Allegedly, this AI system had autonomously generated two inventions: an innovative food container as well as useful devices and methods for attracting enhanced attention. The patent offices refused the patent applications on formal grounds since only a human can be designated as inventor by the applicant.

        • Hacon HHJ and the Seed Drill: Intentionality in prior use (Claydon v Mzuri, [2021] EWHC 1007)

          Does a tree falling in a forest make a sound? The answer to this epistemological cliché (and whether or not you care) depends on your philosophical leanings. Patent law has its own clear answer to the question. In UK patent law, the mere potential for prior public use to have been observed can deprive an invention of novelty. This principle can be a problem for inventors seeking to test prototypes of their inventions, and raises the question of how large, mechanical inventions can be tested without creating the potential (however small) for the invention to have been observed. The recent case of Claydon v Mzuri ([2021] EWHC 1007 (IPEC)) is a particularly harsh example of the application of the prior use case law. The patent was deprived of novelty in view of the inventor’s prior use of a prototype of the invention (a seed drill) in a secluded field on his own land.

          Legal Background: Expandable hose pipes and the potentiality of disclosure

          A general principle of UK patent case law is that disclosures in a publicly visible place are prior art even if no one was there to observe the disclosure. The classic example of such a disclosure is the unread PhD thesis languishing in a publicly accessible library. In Emson v Hozelock, Mr Justice Nugee (as then was), considered whether the development of a new garden hose by an inventor in his garden should be considered prior public use (IPKat: Mr Justice Nugee and the Superhose: The potentiality of disclosure).


          To this Kat, the outcome of this decision raises the question of the suitability of the potentiality of disclosure test for prior use. The patentee was deprived of their patent because the inventor had tested, unobserved, a prototype of his invention on his own land, just because there had been the potential (how every small) for a skilled person to look through a gap in the hedge from an overgrown and unmarked footpath. This does not feel like a wholly fair outcome. Indeed, despite his final decision, Hacon HHJ himself was obviously sympathetic to the plight of the patentee: “Mr Claydon had to test his prototype, nobody saw any of the testing and I entirely understand why he believed that his invention was not publicly disclosed” (para. 102) [Merpel: Indeed, what was the inventor expected to do, test his seed drill indoors?]

          The concept of “intentionality” in prior use was arguably introduced in Emson v Hozelock as a way to avoid outcomes of patent invalidity based on prior use that would seem obviously unfair to the layman (IPKat). However, the decision in Claydon v Mzuri now reveals the limitations of the intentionality argument, and particularly the difficulty of building a case around the intentions that inventors may or may not have had many years ago. Hacon HHJ noted that he found “it hard to believe that nearly 20 years later Mr Claydon could accurately say with any certainty what he would have done” at the time the invention was conceived and tested (para. 92).

        • Pre-Invention Innovations Not Captured by Employment Agreement Duty to Assign [Ed: Corporations that think they 'own' the employee and their thoughts 100% of the time, even outside the workplace]

          At its core, this is an employer-inventor dispute in the area of gene sequencing technology. Saxonov & Hindson co-founded company QuantLife that was bought out by Bio-Rad. The pair then became Bio-Rad employees. At both companies they signed agreements to transfer invention rights to Bio-Rad. In April 2012 the pair left Bio-Rad; in July 2012 formed 10X; and began filing new patent applications in August 2012. These applications eventually issued as patents and include the patents-in-suit: US Patent Nos. 9,689,024, 9,695,468, and 9,856,530.


          The Federal Circuit disagreed. The contract required assignment of “intellectual property” that was “conceive[d], develop[ed], or create[d]” during Bio-Rad employment. But for a patent, “intellectual property does not exist until at least conception,” and the conception date of each invention was after the inventors left Bio-Rad to found 10X. The ITC correctly held that “the assignment provisions do not apply to a signatory’s ideas … solely because the ideas ended up contributing to a postemployment patentable invention.”

          The agreements are clear that they are limited to the term of employment: Each promised to assign anything conceived, developed, or reduced-to-practice “during the period of my employment.”

        • In-house share career tips to stop counsel ‘getting pigeonholed’ [Ed: The "corporate ladder" in the litigation sense means becoming a more parasitic element, sometimes merely abusing people to get promoted]

          Senior counsel at BMS, HPE, Volvo, Veritas and PAX Labs say IP attorneys should endeavour to become jacks of all trades to help them climb the corporate ladder

        • IP judges report: interviews from the world’s key jurisdictions

          Ever wondered what annoys an IP judge? Ever considered how they approach a case? Or perhaps you’re just curious about how they use their spare time? To find the answers to these questions and more, look no further than our special report – which comprises interviews with leading judges across the world’s major IP jurisdictions.


          In mid-2019, we embarked on a mission to interview leading judges worldwide – and this report is the culmination of our efforts to date. Since we published the interview with Mr Justice Henry Carr, he sadly passed away. Mr Justice Richard Arnold was promoted to Lord Justice of Appeal after his interview was published, and our conversation with Justice Peter Huber, following which we broke a major story about the Unified Patent Court, was framed mainly on one case.

        • Tech to halt climate change still evolving [Ed: The corrupt EPO has managed to sneak its greenwashing propaganda even into Indian sites]

          This is the conclusion of a joint report released Tuesday from the European Patent Office (EPO) and the International Energy Agency (IEA).

          “Around half the emissions reductions to get to net zero by 2050 may need to come from technologies that are not yet on the market,” said IEA Executive Director Fatih Birol in a press release.

          The report “Patents and the energy transition: global trends in clean energy technology innovation” looks at trends in low-carbon energy innovation between 2000 and 2019 in terms of international patent families (IPFs). An IPF represents a unique, high-value invention for which a patent application was filed at two or more patent offices around the globe. Patent applications can be considered an early indicator of future technological trends as they are filed months or years before the products go to market.

        • Will the new pharmaceutical strategy for Europe bring changes to the biopharmaceutical rewards system? [Ed: Bristows still lying to clients and to the world, e.g. “The EC has high hopes for the unitary patent system, considered ‘a key tool for the EU’s industrial recovery…’” (that’s a lie and lobbying for self)]

          On its part, the EC’s IP action plan has identified the fragmentation of the EU’s IP system as one of the main challenges in the upgrading of the EU’s IP framework. For this reason, the EC fully supports the unitary patent and the system of centralised litigation before the new Unified Patent Court (assuming this eventually comes into effect). The EC has high hopes for the unitary patent system, considered ‘a key tool for the EU’s industrial recovery, especially for the renewable energy, electronics, aerospace and defence, and mobility ecosystems.’

        • Amgen v. Sanofi: Generally an Attack on Functional Claim Language

          In their forthcoming article, Professors Dmitry Karshtedt, Mark A. Lemley & Sean B. Seymore argue that the Federal Circuit has improperly and unduly limited the ability of chemical and biotech innovators to obtain genus claims — i.e., claims that cover “not just one specific chemical but a group of related chemicals.” The Death of the Genus Claim, 35 Harv. J.L. & Tech. (forthcoming 2021). Now, the trio (along with others) have taken their prior work and converted it to an amicus brief supporting en banc review in the pending case of Amgen Inc. v. Sanofi, Docket No. 20-01074 (Fed. Cir. Oct 24, 2019). Amgen v. Sanofi – Lemley Brief.

          The focus of the case is on “genus claims” where the genus is defined by functional limitations. Here, the patent covers antibodies that bind to a certain protein-molecule [PCSK9] in a certain way [to block LDRL binding]. However, the claim does not affirmatively spell-out the structure of the claim.


          Functional Claim Language: The decision briefing focuses on chemistry and biotech, but the truth is that functional claim limitations are most often found in claims directed to mechanical, electronic, and software fields. These functional claims – to the extent they encompass thousands (or potentially millions) of embodiments – are equally susceptible to the transformed approach. For many years, these two arenas have been treated differently for enablement purposes — with courts often classifying innovations as either within the predictable or unpredictable arts. However, Amgen also shows substantial crossover. In other words, Amgen is generally another attack on claims defined by functional limits.

        • Rationalizing U.S. Standardization Policy: A Proposal for Institutional Reform [Ed: Standards as vehicles of monopoly instead of doing the very opposite of it]

          In the United States, national policy regarding standardization, and especially patents covering standardized products (standards-essential patents, or SEPs) is in a state of disarray. No single U.S. federal agency has authority over national policy toward standardization, nor does a coherent national standardization policy exist. Rather, policies are created ad hoc by a range of authorities, often in response to industry lobbying and in areas outside the agencies’ core competencies. The result has been a piecemeal array of conflicting and flip-flopping policies that confound private industry, harm consumers, and diminish the role of the United States as a model for the rest of the world. Rationalizing and centralizing this patchwork of policy authority would significantly improve consistency, predictability, and stability in this area of national importance.

        • Professional Patent Agency and Patent Quality

          This draft chapter is part of a larger research project exploring the question of patent quality from a human agency perspective. This chapter explores the changing relationship between agency, and specifically, ‘professionalized’ agency, and patent quality.

        • Federal Court upholds Health Canada’s strict interpretation of patent listing deadline for KEYTRUDA formulation patent

          The Federal Court recently dismissed Merck’s application for judicial review of Health Canada’s refusal to add Canadian Patent No. 2,830,806 (806 Patent) to the Patent Register, holding that Health Canada’s decision was justified, intelligible and transparent, and therefore reasonable: Merck Canada Inc v Canada (Health), 2021 FC 345. The 806 Patent issued on May 12, 2020, and contains claims directed to a formulation of Merck’s KEYTRUDA, a biologic drug containing pembrolizumab, approved for the treatment of certain cancers. Patent lists for the 806 Patent were submitted on June 12, 2020, but not until after the close of business. Pursuant to its electronic filing policies, Health Canada considered the patent lists filed on the next business day, June 15, 2020. This was outside the 30-day time period prescribed in subsection 4(6) of the Patented Medicines (Notice of Compliance) Regulations (PMNOC Regulations) and Health Canada deemed the patent lists ineligible for inclusion on the Patent Register.

        • Apple roped into Juniper Networks patent lawsuit

          Apple, AT&T, Bloomberg, Equinix, Google and Verizon were all named as defendants in a patent infringement lawsuit that stems from a separate case involving computer networking specialist Juniper Networks.

          In its suit filed with the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California on Tuesday, Core Optical Technologies alleges Apple, AT&T, Bloomberg, Equinix, Google and Verizon used accused infringed intellectual property by purchasing and utilizing products from Juniper.

          Core Optical in 2019 filed suit against Juniper for alleged infringement of U.S. Patent No. 6,782,211. That case has since been transferred to the Northern District of California.

        • Software Patents

          • The Influence of Alice

            The Supreme Court’s decision in Alice Corp. v. CLS Bank has had a decimating influence on patents and patent applications. Its long shadow looms over every stage of a patent’s life cycle — from prosecution to litigation and the administrative post-grant process at the patent office. In their article, Professor Jay Kesan and Dr. Runhua Wang offer a penetrating look at Alice’s influence on software, business methods and bioinformatics, all key technologies powering our modern economy. This Response sets out the relevant law on patent eligibility, contextualizes the Authors’ key findings on bioinformatics applications against that legal framework, and considers whether Congress, the courts, and the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) can be agents of change to alleviate Alice’s baleful influence on patent law.

          • Apple granted patent for face biometrics with hybrid illumination [Ed: Software patents for Apple surveillance, two evil things in one]

            The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has granted Apple a patent for its method of capturing 3D face biometrics with a hybrid lighting system.
            The patent for Face ID’s ‘Hybrid mode illumination for facial recognition authentication’ comes after another one the USPTO granted last week, which protects Face ID’s features relying on multi-component vision biometric systems.

      • Trademarks

        • EU General Court says that ‘heartfulness’ for meditation cannot be registered as an EU trade mark

          A point of criticism is that the GC’s representation of Hasbro’s statement seems somewhat unfair. By stressing repeatedly “that the applicant admitted, and even submitted, that one of the advantages which justified the filing of the contested mark was not having to furnish proof of genuine use” [e.g. at 89], one gets the impression that Hasbro sought not to have to furnish such proof altogether. It seems to this Kat that’s not quite what Hasbro’s witness meant to say.

          Then again, it could be that the GC is effectively telling us that any repeat filing for identical goods will prima facie constitute bad faith. The statement of Hasbro’s witness effectively decided the case and in hindsight, Hasbro is likely to regret its admission that it wanted to avoid having to prove genuine use every time it files an opposition. It will, however, be rare for such statements to be submitted in proceedings; after this decision, no sane trade mark proprietor would admit anything coming close.

          Perhaps, then, the GC wanted to extend the reach of its decision beyond the facts of this particular case by paraphrasing Hasbro’s admission in a more general way, applicable to a broader category of future decisions. The observation that in this particular case, the filing strategy even “called to mind” abuse of law lends support to this interpretation: apparently, the GC felt that this case went beyond mere inconsistency with the objectives pursued by the EUTMR, a classification now perhaps applied to “regular” repeat filings without specific commercial justifications.

          After all, “not having to furnish proof of genuine use” is a direct result of any repeat filing, whether there is an admission on the file or not. And no obvious examples come to mind where a repeat filing would be based on an appropriate commercial logic. If this Kat’s guess is true, the GC’s decision may yet achieve infamy akin to the board game whose name it carries.

        • No get-out-of-jail-free card for Hasbro as General Court affirms bad faith in MONOPOLY appeal

          Monopoly may not be quite a favourite in the board gaming community, but the eponymous trade mark decision of last week by the General Court (GC) is sure to become a darling of trade mark professionals. The GC affirmed an important 2019 ruling by the European Union Intellectual Property Office’s (EUIPO) Second Board of Appeal (BoA), finding that repeat filings of earlier trade marks may, in specific circumstances, constitute bad faith [BoA decision here, Katpost here; GC decision here, case no T-663/19].


          A point of criticism is that the GC’s representation of Hasbro’s statement seems somewhat unfair. By stressing repeatedly “that the applicant admitted, and even submitted, that one of the advantages which justified the filing of the contested mark was not having to furnish proof of genuine use” [e.g. at 89], one gets the impression that Hasbro sought not to have to furnish such proof altogether. It seems to this Kat that’s not quite what Hasbro’s witness meant to say.

          Then again, it could be that the GC is effectively telling us that any repeat filing for identical goods will prima facie constitute bad faith. The statement of Hasbro’s witness effectively decided the case and in hindsight, Hasbro is likely to regret its admission that it wanted to avoid having to prove genuine use every time it files an opposition. It will, however, be rare for such statements to be submitted in proceedings; after this decision, no sane trade mark proprietor would admit anything coming close.

          Perhaps, then, the GC wanted to extend the reach of its decision beyond the facts of this particular case by paraphrasing Hasbro’s admission in a more general way, applicable to a broader category of future decisions. The observation that in this particular case, the filing strategy even “called to mind” abuse of law lends support to this interpretation: apparently, the GC felt that this case went beyond mere inconsistency with the objectives pursued by the EUTMR, a classification now perhaps applied to “regular” repeat filings without specific commercial justifications.

          After all, “not having to furnish proof of genuine use” is a direct result of any repeat filing, whether there is an admission on the file or not. And no obvious examples come to mind where a repeat filing would be based on an appropriate commercial logic. If this Kat’s guess is true, the GC’s decision may yet achieve infamy akin to the board game whose name it carries.

        • Around the IP Blogs

          A quiet conflict that has pitted two pending trademark applications against one another over the past year has resulted in a formal scuffle between Marc Jacobs and The Ohio State University (“OSU”). On the heels of the two parties filing respective trademark applications to register the word “THE” for use on apparel, OSU has initiated an opposition proceeding in an attempt to block the application that Marc Jacobs filed in May 2019 for “THE” for use on handbags and clothing, among other related goods. The Fashion Law reported on the proceedings.

        • Walmart, Kanye West’s Yeezy LLC Clash Over Lookalike Logos | The Fashion Law

          Early this year, counsel for Kanye West’s Yeezy LLC filed a trademark application for registration for a stylized sun rays graphic. Consisting of “eight dotted lines, each comprising three totally shaded circles, with a total of 24 circles, arranged at equal angles as rays from a sun,” Yeezy LLC’s asserts in its application that it intends to use the mark in connection with everything from clothing and retail store services, and musical sound recordings and streaming to hotel services and the construction of “non-metal modular homes,” among other things. Now, almost four months after Yeezy lodged that application with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, Walmart has stepped in, arguing that the Yeezy graphic looks a bit too much like one that it has been using on similar goods/services for over a decade.

          According to the notice of opposition that it filed with the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board on April 21 (as trademark attorney Erik Pelton pointed out) , Walmart claims that “it will be damaged by registration of [Yeezy LLC’s] mark,” since it has been using a lookalike mark – “a design of six rays symmetrically centered around a circle” – since at least 2007. As a result of its consistent use of the mark, which “can be found prominently featured on the exterior and interior signage of [its] more than 5,000 retail outlets, through the ecommerce platform www.walmart.com, which has the second largest e-commerce market share in the U.S., and throughout [its] nationwide television commercials, including commercials aired during the Super Bowl,” Walmart claims that its mark “has become well known and famous as a distinctive indicator of the origin of [its] goods and services and a symbol of [its] goodwill” as a company.

        • Marc Jacobs, Ohio State University Both Want Trademark Registrations for the Word “The” | The Fashion Law

          A quiet conflict that has pitted two pending trademark applications against one another over the past year has resulted in a formal scuffle between Marc Jacobs and The Ohio State University (“OSU”). On the heels of the two parties filing respective trademark applications to register the word “THE” for use on apparel, OSU has initiated an opposition proceeding in an attempt to block the application that Marc Jacobs filed in May 2019 for “THE” for use on handbags and clothing, among other related goods. In its recently-filed opposition filing, the Columbus, Ohio-based college argues that it has consistently used “THE” as a trademark on athletic merch since at least as early as 2005, more than a decade before Marc Jacobs began to use the mark in connection with its offerings.

          According to the opposition that it filed early this month, as first pointed out by trademark attorney Josh Gerben, OSU claims that the school changed its name in 1878, and as “legend [has] it, the use of ‘The’ (as opposed to the addition of nothing – i.e., Ohio State University or ‘an’ Ohio State University) was to make clear that [the school] was earmarked to be the leading educational institution in Ohio, both in size and financial support from the legislature.” Its “use and emphasis on the word ‘THE’” since then has been “a deliberate, integral, and important element of [OSU’s] identity and history,” the school argues, noting that it “has been continuously and consistently using ‘THE’ as a trademark and in manners analogous to trademark use in connection with its athletic program since at least as early as the 1980’s,” thereby, giving rise to “demand for apparel bearing the trademark ‘THE’” among “students, alumni, and fans of Ohio State and its athletic programs.”

      • Copyrights

        • Google v. Oracle: Lessons for Innovators

          The holding in Google v. Oracle, No. 18-956, slip op. (U.S. Apr. 5, 2021), worth a cool $9 billion, is that Google and others are free, under the fair use doctrine of copyright law, to copy Oracle/Sun’s Java API (application program interface) code. They’re also free, under copyright law, to write their own implementing code or to have others do so. Taking these two points together, Google escaped liability for infringement of Oracle’s copyrighted Java code. They can have Java programmers write apps to run on the Android operating system. And they can thumb their noses at Oracle.

          Let’s unpack the term API for those of us who are not steeped in interface code. An “app” is like a customer walking into a restaurant. The computer on which the app runs is like the kitchen. An API is like the waiter that goes back and forth between the customer and the kitchen. The Supreme Court has just held in Oracle that the waiter has to serve every customer that enters the restaurant.

          Oracle’s predecessor Sun wrote the Java code and made some effort to protect the APIs with patents and copyrights. Google did not want to pay Oracle/Sun for a license to use the Java code in its Android systems. So Google wrote its own code (or at least 99% of it), and it incorporated, that is, copied, the APIs. The Oracle/Sun patents fell by the wayside: A jury found that Google did not infringe Oracle’s patent claims. And now the Supreme Court has held that under copyright law, it was okay for Google to use the APIs without any obligation to Oracle, because (1) Google’s use was held to be new and transformative, (2) the APIs comprised less than 1% of Java’s total code, and (3) the APIs were held to be functional, thus making it “fair use” for Google to copy and use the same.

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