08.23.21

Gemini version available ♊︎

Links 23/8/2021: GitUI 0.17 and Many GSoC Reports

Posted in News Roundup at 9:33 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Linux for Starters: Your Guide to Linux – Maintain your System – Part 14

      This is a series that offers a gentle introduction to Linux for newcomers.

      Like any operating system, Ubuntu can misbehave and the unexpected happens. Fortunately, most system issues experienced are easily rectified with a dose of knowledge, experience and common sense.

      Sometimes issues are caused as a result of neglecting system maintenance. For example, you may run out of hard drive space, or your system becomes clogged up with unnecessary processes. Let’s look at the main ways you can keep your system running in tip-top condition.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • Linux Action News 203

        What’s coming next for the Linux desktop, and some exclusive news from System76.

        Plus, we try out Element’s new voice messages and share our thoughts.

    • Kernel Space

      • Linux 5.14 had most commits in years, but work has gone smoothly and it should debut next week

        Version 5.14 of the Linux kernel seems set to debut next week, after a very calm development process.

        Linus Torvalds kicked things off for version 5.14 on July 11th when he announced rc1 and wrote “I don’t think there are any huge surprises in here, and size-wise this seems to be a pretty regular release too.”

        By the time rc2 was released a week later, he worried that it was not “fairly small and calm” as is often the case for the second release of a new kernel cut, because the release was very large.

        “At least in pure number of commits, this is the biggest rc2 we’ve had during the 5.x cycle. Whether that is meaningful or not, who knows,” he added.

      • Intel Revs Linux Patches Yet Again For Per-Client GPU Statistics – Phoronix

        Going on three years now there have been proposed patches for allowing per-client GPU engine statistics for being able to show on a per-game/application level how many resources across 3D/blitting/video engines are being consumed. The patches continue to be revised but sadly will be missing out on the imminent Linux 5.15 kernel merge window.

        That per-client GPU statistics reporting has been revised on and off again over the past three years for exposing this useful information to user-space so tools can be adapted for nicely reporting it to Linux users.

      • mkinitcpio v31 and UEFI stubs

        For the past decade most computers have two ways to boot. The legacy BIOS mode and UEFI which is suppose to replace it. It frankly does a lot of things, but one of the more interesting aspects is that the Linux kernel is a valid MS DOS binary. If you read out the two first bytes you will see MZ.

        The reason for this is that when we launch Linux from UEFI we are actually running the Linux binary with a bunch of commands which makes out our entry point. Because UEFI is itself a boot loader you can use this fact to boot Linux directly from UEFI as an UEFI boot entry.

        However, most of us don’t want to mess with UEFI directly so we use a bootloader like grub or systemd-boot because it’s easier to deal with.

      • Habana Labs’ Linux AI Driver Causes More Concerns – Changes Dropped Ahead Of Linux 5.15 – Phoronix

        While Habana Labs has been known for their open-source and upstream Linux kernel driver for their AI training/inference accelerators with that code they had been working on as a start-up even before being acquired by Intel, it’s continued to cause friction that they rely in user-space on closed-source components like their compiler. That in turn is again causing problems for changes that the Habana Labs kernel driver planned to land with the upcoming Linux 5.15 cycle.

        This past Thursday the Habana Labs pull request of driver updates was submitted to “char/misc” for queuing ahead of the Linux 5.15 merge window opening in a week or so. For the lack of an AI/accelerator subsystem yet, the Habana Labs kernel driver continues to live within the “catch all” char/misc area of the kernel.

      • Graphics Stack

        • Zink Mesa 21.3-dev Benchmarks – Increasingly Capable Of Running OpenGL Games Atop Vulkan

          Zink as an OpenGL-over-Vulkan API implementation living within Mesa merged its sub-allocator code that could deliver 10x the performance for some games. Plus it also landed OpenGL compatibility context support for getting more games working now with this open-source GL-on-VLK solution. Given the progress made in Mesa Git over the past week, here are some fresh benchmarks now for how the performance stands across various games and benchmarks.

        • Beatriz Martins de Carvalho: Now is a good time to start thinking about your career path after the Outreachy internship.

          Finally today the part 5 of my Outreachy Saga came out, week 9 was on 7/19/21, and as you can see I’m a little late too( ;P )… This week had the theme: “Career opportunities/ Career Goals”

          When I read the Outreachy Organizers email, I had an anxiety crisis, starting to think about what I want to do after the internship, what my career goals are, I panicked… The Imposter Syndrome hit hard, and it still haunts my thoughts and it has been very challenging (as my therapist says) to work with this feeling of not being good enough to apply for a job opening or thinking that my resume is worthless…

          But week 11 arrived #SPOILERALERT with the theme: “Making connections” and talking to some people I could get to know their experiences in companies that work with free software and their contributions to it, I could feel that I am on the right path, that this is the area I want to work on. So let’s get back to the topic of today’s post!!

    • Applications

      • Apps for daily needs part 4: audio editors

        Audio editor applications or digital audio workstations (DAW) were only used in the past by professionals, such as record producers, sound engineers, and musicians. But nowadays many people who are not professionals also need them. These tools are used for narration on presentations, video blogs, and even just as a hobby. This is especially true now since there are so many online platforms that facilitate everyone sharing audio works, such as music, songs, podcast, etc. This article will introduce some of the open source audio editors or DAW that you can use on Fedora Linux. You may need to install the software mentioned. If you are unfamiliar with how to add software packages in Fedora Linux, see my earlier article Things to do after installing Fedora 34 Workstation. Here is a list of a few apps for daily needs in the audio editors or DAW category.

      • GitUI 0.17 Adds The Ability To Compare Commits, New Options Popup (Terminal UI For Git Written In Rust)

        GitUI, a fast terminal user interface for Git written in Rust, available for Linux, macOS and Windows, had a new release yesterday which adds new features like the ability to compare commits, new options popup, and more.

        GitUI allows viewing Git repositories and performing actions on it from your terminal. It features a scalable terminal UI layout, which you control using intuitive keyboard shortcuts. There’s no need to memorize the hot keys, as GitUI shows a context-based help which makes it easy to use.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • Access your iPhone on Linux with this open source tool

        The iPhone and iPad aren’t by any means open source, but they’re popular devices. Many people who own an iOS device also happen to use a lot of open source, including Linux. Users of Windows and macOS can communicate with an iOS device by using software provided by Apple, but Apple doesn’t support Linux users. Open source programmers came to the rescue back in 2007 (just a year after the iPhone’s release) with Libimobiledevice (then called libiphone), a cross-platform solution for communicating with iOS. It runs on Linux, Android, Arm systems such as the Raspberry Pi, Windows, and even macOS.

      • 10 Screen Command Examples to Manage Linux Terminals

        The screen is a full-screen software program that can be used to multiplexes a physical console between several processes (typically interactive shells). It offers a user to open several separate terminal instances inside a single terminal window manager.

      • How to keep a nodejs server running permanently

        Sometimes you need to run your nodejs server permanently (.e.g. for building a REST API that will be consumed by a mobile application) without the need to runthe calling command manually every time you want to start the server. In this short tutorial you will learn the steps required to pull this off.

      • How to install Zoom Video Conferencing app on Ubuntu 20.04

        The award-winning Zoom features video conferencing, Web conferencing, Webinars, Screen sharing, online meetings and group messaging in one easy-to-use application.

        If you need to use the amazing Video Conferencing application Zoom on Ubuntu, follow the steps below.

      • How to Enable and Disable Network Interfaces in Ubuntu 20.04 – VITUX

        Whenever we operate as an Ubuntu admin, we are responsible for managing the system’s network settings. When you make modifications to the Network card on some kind of Linux system, the connection goes down. The network interfaces seem to be either practically or virtually existent, and you may simply activate them using one of the ways. In this tutorial, we’ll go through how to activate, and deactivate network interfaces within Ubuntu using several techniques. All instructions were run on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS, the most recent Ubuntu release. Let’s get started with the specifics!

        First, of very all, you need to install the network tools in your Ubuntu 20/04 Linux system, if not already been installed. Hence, try the below apt install query in the shell and hit Enter key to execute it. Add the user password to carry on the installation process.

      • Create Bootable USB Drive With Ventoy WebUI In Linux – OSTechNix

        Creating single boot or multiboot USB devices with Ventoy is incredibly easy! With Ventoy graphical user interface, it is now even easier than ever. Starting from version 1.0.36, Ventoy bootable creation utility comes with a Web-based user interface. In this brief guide, we will see how to create bootable USB drive with Ventoy WebUI in Linux.

      • Difference Between Single and Double Quote in Bash Shell

        You’ll often use quotes in Linux command line. Dealing with spaces in filename? You use quotes. Handling special characters? You use quotes again.

        The quotes are ‘special feature’ in Linux shell and it may get confusing, specially if you are new to Linux commands and shell scripting.

        I’ll explain the different types of quote characters and their usage in shell scripting.

      • How To Convert PDF To Image in Linux System (CLI and GUI Method)

        PDF is one of the most popular forms to convey information nowadays, and we often need to manipulate those PDF files. Grabbing some portion of a PDF file as an image for various purposes is quite a common phenomenon. On Linux distros, one can convert PDF to image with ease. We can even specify the image file type here. A whole PDF can be converted into several images depending upon the page number of that PDF. Also, any particular page can be converted as well. Depending upon your necessity, you can choose anyone between them. You have the flexibility to choose.

      • How To Install Debian 11 Bullseye with GNOME Desktop

        This tutorial explains Debian 11 installation procedures. This tutorial is suitable for everyone who wants either dualboot, UEFI or BIOS Legacy, normal or external storage method in installing Debian 11. The result expected from this installation is a ready to use Debian 11 with GNOME user interface, LibreOffice, Firefox and other daily software packages and you can have it stored not in internal hard disk in computer but a USB flash drive instead.

      • How To Install PHP 8 on Debian 11 – idroot

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install PHP 8 on Debian 11. For those of you who didn’t know, PHP is an open-source, general-purpose scripting language that is especially suited to web development but has also been used as a general-purpose programming language. The latest PHP release to date is the 8 series. PHP 8 is a significant update of the PHP language. It contains many new features and optimizations, including named arguments, union types, attributes, constructor property promotion, match expression, null safe operator, JIT, improvements in the type system, error handling, and consistency.

        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 PHP 8 on a Debian 11 (Bullseye).

      • How to Install Google Chrome in RedHat-Based Linux Distros

        Google Chrome is a freeware web browser developed by Google Inc. Google Chrome team proudly announced the release of Google Chrome 92 on 16 August 2021.

        The actual version is 92.0.4515.159 for Linux and Mac OS X/Windows operating systems. This new Chrome version is bundled with a number of exciting fixes, features, and improvements.

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Google Chrome browser in RedHat-Based Linux Distros like CentOS, Fedora, Rocky Linux, and AlmaLinux using Google’s own repository with the yum package manager tool.

      • How to Install PostgreSQL on Rocky Linux and AlmaLinux

        PostgreSQL is an immensely popular open-source relational database management system (RDBMS) that has been around for over 30 years. It provides SQL language support which is used for managing databases and performing CRUD operations (Create Read Update Delete).

        [ You might also like: 10 Useful Websites for Learning PostgreSQL Database System]

        PostgreSQL has earned itself a solid reputation for its robustness, flexibility, and performance. It’s the primary datastore for numerous web and analytical applications. Global giants that rely on PostgreSQL include Spotify, Instagram, Trivago, Uber, and Netflix.

        At the time of writing this guide, the latest version is PostgreSQL 13 and in this article, we demonstrate how to install PostgreSQL on Rocky Linux and AlmaLinux.

      • How to Install qBittorrent on Ubuntu 20.04

        Qbittorent is an open-source and freely available peer-to-peer bit torrent client. It is small and does not load the memory disk. This application is known to work effectively and efficiently on many operating systems such as Linux, Microsoft Windows and FreeBSD. It is written in the C++ language. It has a similar interface to u torrent. Qbittorent also supports major bit torrent extensions like peer exchange and full encryption, etc. This article will help you to get the instructions for installing qbittorent on Linux operating system.

        To follow this article, you should have an Ubuntu 20.04 desktop installed and your user must have sudo permissions.

      • How to Upgrade from Debian 10 to Debian 11

        Debian 11, codename “Bullseye” has been released on 14th August 2021. It is a stable release and is supported for the next 5 years. This release brings updates to many well-known packages including, Linux Kernel 5.10 LTS, Apache 2.4.48, MariaDB 10.5, Python 3.9.1, PostgreSQL 13, and more.

        Before upgrading to Debian 11, you should do the following things:

        -Back up all your files on the external drive.

        -Make sure you have a stable internet connection.

        -Disable any external repository.

        -Stop all running application services including, Apache, FTP, and others.

        In this article, I will show you how to upgrade from Debian 10 to Debian 11 in a few easy steps.

      • How to install AWS CLI on Debian 11 Bullseye Linux – Linux Shout

        To manage AWS servers, Amazon cloud offers a command-line interface tool called AWS CLI. It is an open-source program that helps users to manage and automate various Amazon cloud servers directly from their system’s command-line shell. Here we learn the steps to install the AWS CLI tool on Debian 11 Bullseye or 10 Buster using the terminal.

        It is a cross-platform tool, hence apart from Linux, it is also available for Windows and macOS, along with direct access to public APIs for AWS.

        Till now, it has two versions one is AWS CLI 2.x, the current version meant to use in production; whereas Version 1.x is the earlier version available for backward compatibility.

      • 10 iftop Command Examples in Linux

        System monitoring is a critical role that any sysadmin should undertake to ensure that systems and applications are running as expected. We have covered a few monitoring tools in the past including glances real-time monitoring tool and top command which provides detailed information about running process and other metrics such as uptime, CPU and memory usage.

        Iftop is yet another monitoring tool that monitors network bandwidth in real-time. It captures total inbound and outbound data packets flowing through a network interface and displays the total bandwidth usage. In this guide, we walk you through the installation and the usage of the iftop command-line tool.

      • How To Compare Two Files in Linux – TecAdmin

        Sometimes we are required to compare two or more than two files for some modifications or just to check the errors in two same files. Instead of reading both files and comparing them precisely, we have some built-in tools in Linux which can help us in this regard.

        In this article, we will discuss the built-in functions and some third-party tools which are used to compare to files in Linux and how they work.

      • How to Install Etcher USB Image Writer Tool on Ubuntu

        Etcher ( also know as balenaEtcher) is a free, cross-platform, and open-source tool used for writing images such as .iso, .img, and .zip files to storage media. It is used to flash OS images to USB drives, SD Cards, or Raspberry Pi devices. This enables users to create bootable flash drives.

        Etcher is compatible with Windows, Mac, and Linux and is available in 32-bit and 64-bit versions. It is based on Electron and keeps in mind it’s not compatible with the system supporting Wayland.

      • How to Install MySQL 8.0 on Rocky Linux and AlmaLinux

        Written in C, MySQL is an open-source, cross-platform, and one of the most widely used Relational Database Management Systems (RDMS). It’s an integral part of the LAMP stack and is a popular database management system in web hosting, data analytics, and eCommerce applications to mention a few.

      • How to Reload .bash_profile in Linux Command-Line

        The Linux operating system environment is famed for numerous OS-based attributes. One of them is the Linux home directory. It is responsible for all user profiles in the system and enables the system users to create and store files or access already existing/pre-defined system tools and resources.

      • How to Setup Python 3 Virtual Environment on Ubuntu 20.04 – LinuxCapable

        Python’s venv module is a virtual environment is a Python environment such that the Python interpreter, libraries, and scripts installed into it are such that the Python interpreter, libraries, and scripts installed into it are isolated from those installed in other virtual environments, and (by default) any libraries installed on your operating system, for example, those that are installed on your Ubuntu operating system to avoid clashing and disturbing your production environments.

        In the following tutorial, you will learn how to install Python 3 and PIP 3 on your Ubuntu 20.04 operating system, along with setting up a programming environment via the command line.

      • How to Upgrade openSUSE Leap from 15.2 to 15.3

        openSUSE Leap is a free and Linux-based operating system for your PC, Laptop or Server. It’s one of the stable Linux distribution forked from SUSE Enterprise Linux, which is used by millions of users worldwide for their day to day operation and i’m part of that.

        It has been my primary OS since openSUSE Leap 15.1. openSUSE 15.3 is based on SUSE Linux Enterprise 15 SP3 and it is supported until December 2022.

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

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

    • Games

      • Game developer business sim City Game Studio gets a big update and releases August 24 | GamingOnLinux

        After being in Early Access for a few years, City Game Studio just got a big update and it’s leaving Early Access as a finished game on August 24.

        Inspired by a few similar games like Game Dev Story, Game Dev Tycoon and Software Inc this is probably one of the most advanced in the genre. It’s absolutely crammed full of features to keep you and you business busy. The developer mentioned that since the initial release they’ve added in “hacking, cracking, training, building, modding… I mean you can have several studios working on the same project, you can make your own video game console or your own digital store, the shop has been revamped” and so much more.

      • Fantasy Town Regional Manager is an upcoming turn-based roguelite city-builder | GamingOnLinux

        Fantasy Town Regional Manager from developer Caps Collective is an upcoming turn-based city-builder that has a little deck-building sprinkled in and the code is available on GitHub.

        “Following a map to ancient ruins, in a long-forgotten fantasy land, you do the only reasonable thing and set up a small town right on top.

        Unknown riches and perils await your townsfolk, so your town will require a steady supply of adventurers for both protection and exploration. However, the chaos that the adventuring lifestyle brings can often times cause more problems than it solves!

        It is up to you, the regional middle manager of the adventurers guild to grow this small hamlet into a bustling city. Will you stand the test of time, or will your works return to dust as many have before?”

      • Classic run and gun game C-Dogs SDL 1.0 adds support for Wolfenstein and Spear of Destiny | GamingOnLinux

        C-Dogs SDL (a sequel to Cyberdogs), the classic overhead run-and-gun game from the late 90s lives on with a 1.0 release out now that adds in support for Wolfenstein 3D and Spear of Destiny.

        “C-Dogs SDL is a classic overhead run-and-gun game, supporting up to 4 players in co-op and deathmatch modes. Customize your player, choose from many weapons, and blast, slide and slash your way through over 100 user-created campaigns.”

      • The ridiculous Killer Bean is getting a third-person shooter video game | GamingOnLinux

        Ever heard of Killer Bean? It’s a film created by Jeff Lew that released back in 2009 that eventually saw a full YouTube release in 2018 and gained something of a cult following – and now it’s getting a game.

        What to expect from it? The developer notes that it will be a “third person, roguelike shooter” that features plenty of random generation. Each new run through gives a different layout, different missions, characters, bosses and tweaks to the story each time too. Going from the screenshots, it actually looks reasonably pretty too and quite silly.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • KDE Connect iOS Wrapping up GSoC 2021: Plans for the Future

          School ended late for me in mid-June (which ate into the GSoC coding period), but it will also be starting late in late September. Therefore, the month after the end of GSoC would still be a suitable time for me to continue contributing to the project whenever my schedule fits and carry on implementing parts of the projects that either didn’t make it into the GSoC timeline or were delayed throughout GSoC. With a solid, bridged foundation between Swift and Objective-C and a Plugin structure already in place, hopefully, things will be fairly straightforward from here.

          Since many crucial parts of the app, e.g the UI/UX, Plugins, etc. were revamped in Swift, this also opens up many possibilities for other interesting additions to the project. The Catalyst framework, which allows cross-compatibility between iOS and macOS (both Apple Silicon and x86) is only a checkbox (and perhaps some UI and backend tweaking) away. And adding Widgets for iOS >=14 and perhaps even a watchOS companion app is also on the table. SwiftUI’s accessibility features are also very straightforward e.g being able to configure lines for the iOS screen reader with a few lines of code. The future potential and possibility of KDE Connect iOS seem broad and wide, and hopefully, we would be able to get to at least some of them.

        • KDE GSOC: Thanks and Work Product

          First of all: A big thanks to my mentor Jasem Mutlaq and the KStars Team.

          Jasem, you were extremely helpful whilst leaving me a lot of freedom. With patience you have endured my mood swings and occasional panics :P. It has always been a pleasure working with you and I am certain that this will continue to be the case.

          Furthermore, the rest of the KStars Team, especially Akarsh Simha, Wolfgang Reissenberger and Robert Lancaster who have found bugs, helped me to debug them and suggested improvements1.

          I also thank Yuri Chornoivan for correcting all the typos that I’ve inadvertently introduced into the handbook and the comments in the code.

        • Old Asus Vivobook & new KDE neon – Freshly fresh

          I’ve been doing a little bit of housekeeping lately. Mostly, rotating hardware. I happen to have two laptops, which I classify as for production or semi-production use, but they are getting a little bit long in the tooth and gray in the beard. To that end, I decided to “downgrade” them in their use, but also take advantage of the opportunity to do some software changes.

          Firstly, with my IdeaPad Y50-70, I relegated it from primary to secondary use, and added Kubuntu to the operating system arsenal. This 2014-vintage 4K-screen laptop now runs Windows 8.1 and Plasma-flavored Focal in a dual-boot configuration. A very useful exercise, hybrid card, Nvidia, all that. Secondly, with my 2013-era Asus Vivobook, used for secondary purposes, now tertiary, I decided to do a complete makeover. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves. Do read on.

          [...]

          Thus endeth my exercise. I have to say, I’m really pleased with the outcome. I was able to configure an FDE setup on an ancient laptop, no need for TPM of anything like that, it’s got the latest of Plasma, which offers superior visual results and consistency across the board (beyond Linux, too), the speed is quite decent, and for normal usage (no gaming and such), this is a perfectly reasonable piece of kit.

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • Manuel Genovés: Wrapping up GSoC 2021

          This year’s GSoC has been a great opportunity to learn and to contribute to the GNOME project. Let’s recapitulate what has been done in the libadwaita animations project, what is left to do, and how the future looks like.

    • Distributions

      • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandriva/OpenMandriva Family

        • vivaldi browser updated to 4.1.2369.21 » PCLinuxOS

          Vivaldi browser is a Chromium based browser built by an Opera founder. It’s aimed mostly at power users, but it can be used by anyone.

        • zoom client updated to 5.7.6.31792.082 » PCLinuxOS

          Zoom, the cloud meeting company, unifies cloud video conferencing, simple online meetings, and group messaging into one easy-to-use platform. Our solution offers the best video, audio, and screen-sharing experience across Zoom Rooms, Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS, Android, and H.323/SIP room systems.

      • SUSE/OpenSUSE

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

      • Debian Family

        • Pavit Kaur: GSoC 2021: Final Evaluation

          Debian Continuous Integration is Debian’s CI platform. It runs tests on the packages published in the Debian archive, and today is used to control migration of packages from unstable, Debian’s development area, to testing, the area of the archive where the next Debian release is being prepared. This makes it a crucial part of Debian’s infrastructure.

          The web platform shows the results of all the tests executed. Debian CI provides developers both API and a GUI Self-Service section to request tests for the packages and get information on test history.

          This project involves implementing incremental improvements to the platform, making it easier to use and maintain.

        • Review: Debian 11

          One of the first things that I noticed while settling into my Debian trial was how little the distribution has changed. Someone could have swapped out my Debian 11 install media for a copy of Debian 8 and I probably wouldn’t have noticed the difference. The installer is virtually identical to the one that shipped with Debian 6, the GNOME desktop hasn’t really changed in the past release or two, the same quirks, issues, smooth running, and manual work are the same. Whether this is good or not will probably depend on whether you’re interested in new features or consistency.

          Debian 11 highlights a few distinct characteristics of the overall project in my mind. I believe it demonstrates why Debian is such a popular and powerful base, both as a foundation for other distributions and for server or embedded systems. It also demonstrates why there is such a need for Debian-based desktop distributions.

          On the one side, Debian is an amazing project. It is a huge undertaking, supporting a handful of CPU architectures, providing tens of thousands of packages, multiple kernel implementations, and three main branches people can run. The project offers roughly five years of support and is well known for its stability and maturity. It’s a hugely impressive undertaking and the team’s dedication to making a universal operating system out in the open (using issue trackers and mailing lists) is commendable.

        • Bits from Debian: Lenovo, Infomaniak, Roche, Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Google, Platinum Sponsors of DebConf21

          We are very pleased to announce that Lenovo, Infomaniak, Roche, Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Google, have committed to supporting DebConf21 as Platinum sponsors.

          [...]

          The 22nd Debian Conference is being held Online, due to COVID-19, from August 22nd to 28th, 2021. There are 8 days of activities, running from 10:00 to 01:00 UTC. Visit the DebConf21 website at https://debconf21.debconf.org to learn about the complete schedule, watch the live streaming and join the different communication channels for participating in the conference.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • HarmonyOS 2.0 update tracker: HongMeng OS 2.0 Release date, beta, & other info

        According to data from Statcounter, Huawei has, over the past year, been holding steady at about 10% of the global Mobile Vendor Market Share, trailing behind Korean tech giant Samsung at about 31% and Apple at 25% market share.

        This is rather impressive, especially seeing as Huawei’s sales outside of China have been greatly handicapped owing to the ongoing tension between the Chinese tech giant and the U.S.

      • Spectro Cloud Announces Open Source Contribution That Makes Bare Metal Kubernetes Accessible and Manageable For The Enterprise

        Spectro Cloud, a provider of a next-gen enterprise Kubernetes management platform, today announced the release of an open source CNCF Cluster API contribution supporting Canonical’s MaaS interface. The new contribution to the open source Kubernetes ecosystem addresses the need for organizations to easily deploy, run and manage Kubernetes clusters directly on top of bare metal servers, increasing performance and minimizing cost and operational effort.

      • Five ways that Open Source Software shapes AI policy

        Open-source software (OSS), which is free to access, use, and change without restrictions, plays a central role in the development and use of artificial intelligence (AI). An AI algorithm can be thought of as a set of instructions—that is, what calculations must be done and in what order; developers then write software which contains these conceptual instructions as actual code. If that software is subsequently published in an open-source manner—where the underlying code publicly available for anyone to use and modify—any data scientist can quickly use that algorithm with little effort. There are thousands of implementations of AI algorithms that make using AI easier in this way, as well as a critical family of emerging tools that enable more ethical AI. Simultaneously, there are a dwindling number of OSS tools in the especially important subfield of deep learning—leading to the enhanced market influence of the companies that develop that OSS, Facebook and Google. Few AI governance documents focus sufficiently on the role of OSS, which is an unfortunate oversight, despite this quietly affecting nearly every issue in AI policy. From research to ethics, and from competition to innovation, open-source code is playing a central role in AI and deserves more attention from policymakers.

      • Productivity Software/LibreOffice/Calligra

        • Final Report – GSoC – 100 Paper Cuts | Bayram Çiçek’s website

          I’m very happy that we all reached the end of GSoC. During that time, I know that I had a responsibility for doing everything that I can. Therefore I worked hard, tried to get familiar with the LibreOffice community and worked on as many bugs as I can.

          I learned a lot of things during the GSoC. Although GSoC is finished, I will definitely continue to contribute to LibreOffice. I am really happy to be a part of the LibreOffice community and GSoC.

        • LibreOffice 7.2 adds better support for Microsoft Office documents

          The Document Foundation has announced the launch of LibreOffice 7.2 – a major new release of the office suite that comes with lots of interoperability improvements to better support Microsoft Office formats such as DOCX, DOC, PPTX and XLSX. The new update also adds native support for Apple Silicon, although, it’s recommended that you stick to the older binary types for stability reasons.

          LibreOffice 7.2 also comes with several new performance improvements when it comes to opening larger files, opening DOCX and XLSX files, managing font caching, and opening presentations and drawings that contain large images. If you’re using the Skia back-end, which was introduced in LibreOffice 7.1, you’ll also notice drawing speed improvements.

          According to The Document Foundation, LibreOffice 7.2 Community’s new features came from 171 contributors with 70% of the code commits coming from just 51 developers employed by Collabora, Red Hat, and allotropia – all of which sit on the TDF’s Advisory Board, and other organisations. The other 30% come from 120 individual volunteers.

        • LibreOffice 7.2 brings improved but still imperfect Microsoft Office compatibility [Ed: By Microsoft Tim]

          The Document Foundation has released LibreOffice 7.2, including a native build for Apple Silicon though users are warned not to use it “for any critical purpose.”

          The new release is not a big one for features but is nevertheless notable for a couple of reasons.

          First, there is now an official Apple Silicon build which can be found here, though the Foundation said that “because of the early stage of development on this specific platform, binaries are provided but should not be used for any critical purpose.”

          Second, there has been an effort to further improve compatibility with Microsoft Office document formats, with hundreds of fixes to small details that previously prevented identical rendering.

          Both Microsoft Office and LibreOffice use an XML document format. According to the foundation: “Microsoft files are still based on the proprietary format deprecated by the ISO in April 2008, and not on the ISO approved standard, so they have a large amount of hidden artificial complexity.” The native format of LibreOffice is the rival Open Document (ODF) standard.

        • New LibreOffice 7.2: More Office compatibility, but enterprise really should pay up [Ed: Another negative slant from another Microsoft booster]

          The Document Foundation (TDF) has announced the release of LibreOffice 7.2, the free and open source alternative to Microsoft Office.

          LibreOffice 7.2 arrives six months after TDF released LibreOffice 7.1 with a message urging enterprise users to stop using the free Community version and move to a paid-for LibreOffice Enterprise version with more support options from partners.

          TDF, which bills LibreOffice as “free and open source software” (FOSS), is maintaining its position that enterprise organizations should stop free-riding off the volunteer-made community version and that LibreOffice may stagnate like OpenOffice — the open source office productivity suite that Oracle offloaded to The Apache Foundation in 2011.

        • The LibreOffice 7.2 Community is available for download

          The LibreOffice program now offers the final version 7.2 of the LibreOffice community, a volunteer-supported version of the best open source office suite

      • Funding

        • Commercial and open source GraphQL company Apollo raises $130M | VentureBeat

          So where does Apollo come into all of this? The core Apollo graph platform unifies APIs, microservices, and databases into what is known as a data graph (though it now just refers to this as “graph”), which can be easily queried with GraphQL and put to use in client-side applications. The platform allows users to see everything that they need to build new software-based experiences in a single place, including the types of data that exist, the relationships between them and relevant documentation, what services rely on that data, when they last changed, and who’s using them.

      • Openness/Sharing/Collaboration

        • Open Data

          • Data Gathering – Somalia Cities: Training manual

            While many data are available across different sectors and key actors, there is no official cartography nor related databases which represent Somali cities as they are now. In this sense, Somalia is, in many senses, unexplored territory. Access limitations to many of its parts make it very difficult to provide updated, reliable and verified information from a spatial perspective.

          • Embracing Observability in Distributed Systems

            Michael Hausenblas discusses good practices and current developments around CNCF open source projects and specifications including OpenTelemetry and FluentBit.

      • Programming/Development

  • Leftovers

    • Hardware

      • Samsung sprints past Intel to become world’s semiconductor sales leader

        Samsung has taken the sales lead as the world’s largest semiconductor supplier in 2021′s second quarter after a ten per cent jump allowed it to leapfrog Intel in the rankings, said semiconductor-centric analyst firm IC Insights.

        IC Insights’ August Update to the 2021 McClean Report ranks Samsung as the company with the world’s most voluminous semiconductor sales in Q2 – up from second place in Q1. Intel holds second place. The remaining top five remain stable in their ranking: TSMC (3rd), SK hynix (4th) and Micron (5th). SK hynix and Micron saw significant sales boosts in Q2 from Q1 but not enough to shuffle the rankings.

        Samsung’s secret sauce was a 19 per cent increase in sales driven by rising demand for DRAM and flash memory – a market segment that has aided past Samsung surges. Rising prices along with heavy demand did Samsung’s bottom-line a world of good as well.

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Security

          • Josh Bressers: Episode 285 – Open source owes you nothing!

            Josh and Kurt talk about open source bugs. What happens if a project decides to close most of their bugs? Nothing really. Bug trackers aren’t a help desk.

          • Bug Bounty Hunters | Meet The Indians Raking In Lakhs To Find Software Glitches

            Mayur Fartade, a final-year engineering college student, earned Rs 22 lakh ($30,000) on June 15. Narendra Bhati, a security professional in Pune, earned over Rs 80 lakh in 6-7 months, and Akhil George, a 23-year-old engineering graduate, earned Rs 66 lakh ($90,000) last year. Bhavuk Jain, an engineer from Ghaziabad, won Rs 75 lakh ($100,000) in a single day.

            They didn’t make that quick money by clicking on some dubious ads on a website. Rather, Fartade, Bhati, George and Jain are examples of how computer science engineers can earn lakhs finding bugs in software.

          • Delhi High Court seeks Centre’s response on plea alleging data breaches on online platforms of Domino’s, BigBasket, MobiKwik, Air India

            Justice Rekha Palli granted time to the Standing Counsel for Central government, Ajay Digpaul to obtain further instructions on the plea filed by Yarlagadda Kiran Chandra, General Secretary, Free Software Movement of India.

          • Trend Micro Detected Nearly 13 Million Malware Events Targeting Linux-based Cloud Environments [Ed: "Events" do not mean compromise (unlike Windows) and this is just Akamai shilling its proprietary software, which add additional risks]
          • WARNING: scam mails about krita and youtube coming from krita.io

            If you receive mail pretending to come from the Krita from an email address that does not end in krita.org, like krita.io or krita.app , please be aware that these mails are scams.

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • Apple’s Photo-Scanning Plan Sparks Outcry From Policy Groups

              The Center for Democracy and Technology (CDT) announced the letter, with CDT Security and Surveillance Project codirector Sharon Bradford Franklin saying, “We can expect governments will take advantage of the surveillance capability Apple is building into iPhones, iPads, and computers. They will demand that Apple scan for and block images of human rights abuses, political protests, and other content that should be protected as free expression, which forms the backbone of a free and democratic society.”

            • Nearly 100 policy and rights groups push Apple to abandon plans to scan iPhones for child abuse – CNET

              A coalition of more than 90 US and international organizations sent an open letter to Apple CEO Tim Cook on Thursday, urging him to halt the company’s plans to build new child safety features into its iPhones, iPads and Macs. The new capabilities, which Apple plans to release as part of free software updates in the coming months, could be twisted into tools of surveillance, the group warned.

              “Though these capabilities are intended to protect children and to reduce the spread of child sexual abuse material (CSAM), we are concerned that they will be used to censor protected speech, threaten the privacy and security of people around the world, and have disastrous consequences for many children,” the group said in the letter, whose signatories include the Center for Democracy & Technology, the American Civil Liberties Union, the Electronic Frontier Foundation and Privacy International.

            • VC Daily: Remote Work Boosts Blogging Platform; New Tech-Industry Battle Is Taking Shape; China Set to Pass Strict Data-Privacy Law | Morningstar

              China’s top legislative body is expected this week to pass a privacy law that resembles the world’s most robust framework for online privacy protections, Europe’s General Data Protection Regulation. But unlike European governments, which themselves face more public pressure over data collection, Beijing is expected to maintain broad access to data under the new Personal Information Protection Law.

              The national privacy law, China’s first, is being reviewed as frustration grows within the government, and in Chinese society at large, over online fraud, data theft and data collection by Chinese technology giants. The law is on its third round of reviews, usually the last before passage.

    • Finance

    • Censorship/Free Speech

    • Monopolies

      • Patents

        • SlantRange Adds to Intellectual Property Portfolio with 10th Patent; First in European Union [Ed: Hilarious. SlantRange brags about patent from the EPO, which grants terrible patents these days, and thinks EPO has something to do with EU (false; very different things)]

          SlantRange, Inc., a leading provider of agricultural insights, announced today the issuance of a new patent covering foundational technologies for aerial crop inspection and measurement.

          Patent 3,192,260, issued by the European Patent Office, covers SlantRange’s sunlight calibration technology that enables accurate crop measurement, prescriptions, and forecasting from crop imagery.

        • Australian Federal Circuit finds literal interpretation of “first approval” in PTE legislation leads to “manifest absurdity” [Ed: Patents on cancer, profiting from angst and suffering]

          The Australian Federal Circuit has overturned a decision of the Commissioner of Patent to reject a patent term extension (PTE) application based on a third party marketing authorisation ([2021] FCA 643). The Federal Circuit found the consequences of enforcing a strict interpretation of “first authorisation” for the purposes of determining the valid authorisation for a PTE application to be wholly unreasonable. The decision appears to bring Australia broadly in-line with the US system for PTE. However, questions remain unanswered with respect to whether Australian PTEs can be based on third party authorisations granted to licensees and/or without the consent of the authorization holder. The Australian patent commissioner has also now appealed the Federal Circuit decision, leaving the legal status of PTEs granted according to the Federal Circuits interpretation of the Patent Act in legal limbo.

          Case Background: Which is the “first approval” for the purposes of a Australian PTE application?

          The case in Ono Pharmaceutical v Commissioner of Patents ([2021] FCA 643) related to the PD-1 inhibitor nivolumab (Opdivo) for the treatment of cancer, owned by Ono Pharmaceuticals (a subsidiary of BMS). After receiving approval for nivolumab in Australia, Ono requested patent term extension (PTE) for their Australian patent covering nivolumab.

          Importantly, the claims of BMS/Ono’s patent (AU 2011203119) also covered Merck’s independently developed PD-1 inhibitor pembrolizumab (Keytruda), which has a different sequence to nivolumab. Keytruda was approved in Australia nine months before Opdivo. Ono filed a PTE application based on the approval for Opdivo.

        • Compulsory License: United States of America [Ed: Such licences are typically accompanying very controversial patents that oughtn't exist in the first place (grants refused or patents invalidated for innovation's sake)]

          On August 2, 2010, Dr. C. Allen Black, Jr. submitted a request on behalf of his patients with Fabry disease Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), asking the Government to exercise its March-in rights under the Bayh-Dole Act. The request concerned HHS to grant to open license to certain patents owned by Mount Sinai School of Health that were funded by NIH (and exclusively licensed by Mount Sinai to Genzyme Corporation) to permit manufacturing of Fabrazyme®.

          On November 3, 2010, the NIH denied the petition of March-in rights stating that under the current FDA drug approval process, it would take years of clinical testing to bring a biosimilar of Fabrazyme® to the market and therefore granting March-in rights would not address the problem. The NIH also stated that it would continue to monitor the situation and if Genzyme could not meet its production deadlines, or if a third-party licensee requested a license, the March-in request would be revisited.

        • Australia and South Africa find Artificial Intelligence “Inventor” compatible with Patent Law [Ed: Fairly irrelevant patent offices looking for some business... from bots]

          Traditionally, an “inventor” in a patent application has been defined as a person who invented or discovered the subject matter of the invention. Until recently, it has not been necessary to consider whether a non-human entity could be considered an inventor. With the development of artificial intelligence based technology (“A.I.”), we need to consider the issue. If we have reached a point where A.I. could independently invent or create protectable IP, could such an A.I. be listed as an inventor?[1]

        • Opinion: It’s about time for patent reform in India [Ed: Lobbying in “opinion” clothing for patent litigation profiteers]
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DecorWhat Else is New


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  2. Links 8/12/2021: Linux 5.15.7 Out, Linux Mint 20.3 is Near

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  3. Links 8/12/2021: Zorin OS 16 Milestone and Calculate Linux 22 Released; Kubernetes 1.23

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  4. A Call for Sources and Whistleblowers From Microsoft's GitHub

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  8. Links 8/12/2021: FreeBSD 12.3, EasyOS 3.1.13, and WordPress 5.9 Beta 2

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  11. Links 7/12/2021: Firefox 96 Beta and Fedora 37 Abandons ARMv7

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  12. Links 7/12/2021: Plasma Mobile Gear 21.12 and Tails 4.25

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  13. All IRC Logs Now Available as GemText Over Gemini Protocol

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  14. IRC Proceedings: Monday, December 06, 2021

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  15. [Meme] Rowing to the Bottom of the Ocean

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  17. Linux Foundation 2021 Annual Report Made on an Apple Mac Using Proprietary Software

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  18. Links 7/12/2021: OpenIndiana Hipster 2021.10 and AppStream 0.15

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  19. Microsoft “Defender” Pretender Attacks Random Software That Uses NSIS for installation; “Super Duper Secure Mode” for Edge is a Laugh

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  28. Gemini Space/Protocol: Taking IRC Logs to the Next Level

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