Links 05/04/2022: Firefox 99, Q4OS 4.8, and LXD 5.0 LTS Released

Posted in News Roundup at 4:58 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Server

      • Most Reliable Hosting Company Sites in March 2022 [Ed: GNU/Linux dominant, as usual]

        The most reliable hosting company site in March 2022 was Aruba, which has now topped the table for four months in a row. Aruba provides hosting, cloud and digital signature services, fibre optic internet, digital preservation, and more. The company has data centres across Europe, in the UK, Germany, Czechia, Poland, Italy and France.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • Videodeepin 20.5 overview | Beautiful and Wonderful – Invidious

        In this video, I am going to show an overview of deepin 20.5 and some of the applications pre-installed.

      • 272: Behind The Scenes of Destination Linux – Destination Linux

        This week’s episode of Destination Linux, we’re taking you on a behind the scenes tour of our studio setups. All the equipment we use each week to produce this show…DL which is quite unique being that it’s a live video and audio podcast. We’re also going to discuss the amazing open-source software that powers it all. Then we’re going to talk about the upcoming Thunderbird email client release. 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.

      • LHS Episode #462: Hamfest and LHS Deep Dive | Linux in the Ham Shack

        Hello and welcome to Episode #462 of Linux in the Ham Shack. In this episode, the hosts take on two topics. The first is the art and science of the hamfest, exploring what happens at hamfests, what you can do, how you can participate and how you can benefit. Then we discuss future changes to the format and schedule of Linux in the Ham Shack to keep everyone informed and explain how these updates will make the show better. Thanks for listening and have a great week.

      • Late Night Linux – Episode 171 – Late Night Linux

        A varied selection of Discoveries including Telegraf, writing tools, a book about networking, and fixing a Mac. Plus your feedback about Matrix bridges, virtualisation, Pocket alternatives, the BBC, game development, and more.

      • Jupiter BroadcastingSynapse Collapse | LINUX Unplugged 452

        How we nearly crashed our Matrix server; what we did wrong and how we’re fixing it.

        Plus an update on elementary OS, GNOME’s next chapter, and we kick off the NixOS Challenge.

      • Headline Hangout w/Chris | Jupiter Extras 85

        Chris’s thoughts on Linux’s NVIDIA conundrum, Elon’s takeover of Twitter, MailChimp’s insider hack, and the Google Drones taking off in Texas.

    • Applications

      • 9to5LinuxFwupd 1.7.7 Adds Support for Logitech M550, M650 and K650, More StarLite Laptops

        Coming one and a half months after fwupd 1.7.6, which added support for Star Labs’ Star Lite Mk III laptop, the fwupd 1.7.7 release is here with support for even more of Star Labs’ StarLite Linux-powered laptops, though no specific model is mentioned in the release notes at this time, so if it works with your device you’re in luck.

      • LWNLXD 5.0 LTS released
        The LXD team is proud to announce the release of LXD 5.0 LTS!
        LXD is a system container and virtual machine manager which provides a
        cloud-like user experience.
        It can work on any regular Linux system from a simple laptop all the
        way to a large cluster of servers.
        As a Long Term Support release, LXD 5.0 will be getting upstream
        bugfix and security support until June 2027.
        The first two years will include frequent bugfix releases and the
        remaining three years will be limited to security fixes.
      • IT Pro PortalBest remote desktop for Linux in 2022 | ITProPortal

        Choosing the best remote desktop for Linux will enable you to access computers and mobile devices remotely from your Linux computer. But there are far fewer options available for Linux users than for Windows or Mac owners, and these tend to be much more difficult to use.

        This can make it hard to select the right option, particularly if you don’t want too steep of a learning curve. Many Linux remote desktops are open-source and versatile, but they also require significant tech skills to install and use.

        To help you find your way through the confusing jargon surrounding Linux remote desktops and select the right option for your business, we’ve put together this guide. In it, we take a close look at the leading Linux remote desktop programs available today.

      • GamingOnLinuxA new tool ‘unsnap’ helps you move from Snaps to Flatpaks | GamingOnLinux

        Want to migrate over from Snaps to Flatpaks on your Linux machine? Well, unsnap is a new tool in the early stages that will help you do just that. Developed by Alan Pope, who previously worked for Canonical and was an advocate for Snap packages, it’s certainly an eyebrow raising move.

        The idea is simple: to allow you to quickly and easily migrate from Snap to Flatpak applications. Done over a two-stage process, it allows you to “view and/or edit the scripts prior to execution to validate or tweak them”.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • TechRepublicHow to switch ChromeOS to use Debian Bullseye | TechRepublic

        If you’ve added Linux support to your Chromebook, chances are pretty good it’s not using the latest version of Debian (which is version 11.3, aka “Bullseye”). Given that there are several important security and bug fixes to this release, you shouldn’t think twice about upgrading it on your Chromebook.

      • Linux JournalHow to Install and Uninstall KernelCare | Linux Journal

        In my previous article, I described what KernelCare is. In this article, I’m going to tell you how to install, uninstall, clear the KernelCare cache, and other important information regarding KernelCare. In case you’re yet to know about the product, here’s a short recap. KernelCare provides automated security updates to the Linux kernel. It offers patches and error fixes for various Linux kernels.

        So, if you are looking for anything similar, you have landed upon the right page. Let’s begin without further ado.

      • Ubuntu HandbookHow to Get Back Previous GNOME Screenshot Tool in Ubuntu 22.04 | UbuntuHandbook

        Ubuntu 22.04 has a new in-shell screenshot UI for taking screenshots and recording desktop. The old default screenshot app (GNOME Screenshot) is no longer available out-of-the-box.

        For those somehow sticking to the old screenshot tool, here’s how to install it back and configure keyboard shortcuts in Ubuntu 22.04.

      • How to install XFCE desktop on Manjaro Linux | FOSS Linux

        Manjaro is a Linux-based distro built upon the Arch Linux OS with a core focus on convenience and an easy UI experience. Like every other open-source Linux-based distro, Manjaro is also free and comes with great support from the community.

        However, unlike popular options like Ubuntu, Manjaro is developed in a rolling release method. It is an excellent option for new Linux users as it offers a flexible desktop experience and is relatively user-friendly.

        One of the best things about most Linux-based distros is that they come with many different editions, each boasting a separate GUI for various users. Manjaro is no exception as it comes in three different versions with other desktop environments, namely KDE Plasma, Xfce and GNOME. You can check them out from the official page by clicking here.

      • How to install Monitorix on Debian 11

        One of the things I like most about Linux is that we have many applications to do a task. And I like this because each one has something to contribute. An example of this are the monitoring tools. One alternative to monitor a server is to install Monitorix. Today, we will show you how to do it on a Debian 11 system.

      • VideoHow to get WiFi working on Linux – Invidious

        It can be a bit frustrating when hardware doesn’t work on your Linux install, especially WiFi. Sometimes, WiFi works out of the box – and other times, not so much. In this video, Jay from LearnLinuxTV will let you know why this is sometimes a problem, as well as some of the things you can do about it.

      • Linux HintHow to check network interface status in CentOS8

        Network Interface allows connecting your device with some internet connection. In Linux, the network interface can be either physical or virtual. The physical network interface helps in connecting with various computers or connecting with the internet. On the other hand, the virtual interface usually connects with one device.

        The network interface must be enabled and functioning properly to either connect with the internet or locally. To have a functional network interface, one must keep an eye on the status of the network interface. This article provides the possible ways to get the status of the network interface on CentOS 8.

      • Red Hat OfficialHow to create dynamic inventory files in Ansible | Enable Sysadmin

        Learn how to use the host_list and Nmap plugins to build inventory files for your Ansible playbooks.

      • HowTo ForgeHow to Install and Use SFTP on Linux Servers
      • Linux HintHow to Install GCC for Arch Linux

        GCC (GNU Compiler Collection) comprises compilers for well-known programming languages such as C, C++, Go, Fortran, Objective-C, and many more. The GCC is completely free and provides cross-platform support for Linux, Windows, and multiple BSD-based systems.

        Apart from this, one can suggest or make enhancements to GCC and you can utilize the enhancements done by other developers/users as well. Moreover, the GCC can be used to make executable files for other systems which makes it the best choice for embedded systems (as they don’t have any compiler).

        Keeping in view the importance of GCC, this guide demonstrates the step-by-step procedure to install GCC on Arch Linux.

      • Linux HintHow to Use Rc.local on CentOS 8

        The RC stands for “run commands” and usually the rc phenomenon is practiced by system administrators to run a command at system boot. The “rc.local” is a script that contains the commands to be exercised at system startup.

        In Linux, the system administrators may wish to conduct a system test before startup. In such a situation, the admin must put the relevant commands inside the rc.local file to make their execution possible at system startup.

        If you are curious about using the rc-local file on CentOS 8; you are in the right place.

      • Installation and Review of Q4OS Linux [Lightweight Distro]

        Q4OS is a new Linux distribution that’s based on Debian; a common base that’s shared with other distributions like Ubuntu and Linux Mint.

        It’s aimed at users who just want a simple, stable, easy to use Linux operating system that they can conveniently run on an aging computer so they may surf the web, check emails, watch videos, and even play games while offering them a good level of security and privacy.

      • Linux Shell TipsHow to Download Files with Curl Command in Linux

        Curl, short for Client URL, is a handy and flexible command-line tool used to transfer data between client systems. It supports a myriad of protocols such as FTP, FTPS, HTTP, HTTP, LDAP, POP3, and SCP just to mention a few.

      • How To Access Proxmox Virtual Machine With SPICE Client

        By default, Proxmox uses noVNC client to access the console of a Virtual machine. The noVNC client is just enough if you want to connect to a Proxmox VM without any additional tools. However, a few things don’t seem to work well with noVNC.

        One of the major problem is I can’t hear any sound from the VM. Also, when I play a YouTube video, it is lagging and stuttering and out of sync with the audio.

        After searching through Proxmox forums, many users have suggested that SPICE client helped them to solved such issues. So I gave it a try. To my surprise, SPICE works great.

    • Games

      • Unreal Engine 5 is now available! – Unreal Engine

        UE5 will empower you to realize next-generation real-time 3D content and experiences with greater freedom, fidelity, and flexibility than ever before.

      • PhoronixUnreal Engine 5 Officially Released
      • GamingOnLinuxUnreal Engine 5 has officially launched, lots of Linux and Vulkan improvements | GamingOnLinux

        After being available in Early Access since May 2021 and Preview since February 2022, Epic Games has today released Unreal Engine 5 which will no doubt go on to power some of the biggest upcoming releases.

        “With this release, we aim to empower both large and small teams to really push the boundaries of what’s possible, visually and interactively. UE5 will enable you to realize next-generation real-time 3D content and experiences with greater freedom, fidelity, and flexibility than ever before.” — Epic Games.

        Epic say that developers will be able to continue using “workflows supported in UE 4.27″ but get access to the redesigned Unreal Editor, better performance, improved path tracing and the list goes on.

      • GamingOnLinuxThe Steam Deck hit me over the head with feelings of nostalgia | GamingOnLinux

        Something happened to me recently while playing the Steam Deck that I felt the need to share with you.

        The Steam Deck may be a modern device but it’s been giving me a very heavy dose of nostalgia recently. No, it’s not because it’s a great machine for emulation, which I’ve done very little of so far because so many amazing modern games work but for something totally different.

        Here’s something it reminds me of: I grew up with the likes of the Game Boy. In fact, I originally had the Game Boy Pocket, the one you could see through the case and get a look at the insides. I used to stay up far too late playing Pokémon Yellow, with one of those terrible bulky light and magnifier attachments which had quite a bit of weight to it with the batteries inside. To me, the Steam Deck is bringing back memories of that. As weird as it might be to say from a modern device, the injection of nostalgia I’ve been getting has been quite wonderful.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • Its FOSSXfce Terminal 1.0.0 is a Feature-Packed Major Upgrade After a Year

        The popular terminal emulator found on almost all Xfce-powered distributions, Xfce Terminal has just released its first major upgrade under a new maintainer (and a new versioning scheme).

        Let us take a look at some highlights of the release.

        Igor Zakharov was leading the development from 2016 until 2020. Unfortunately, it was left unmaintained in 2021 when the new maintainer, Sergios Anestis Kefalidis (also a developer of Thunar file manager), took over the responsibility.

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • LiliputingMaui Shell Alpha released (convergent desktop environment for Linux phones and PCs)

          The developers of the Linux-based NitruxOS (NXOS) have been working on a slick new convergent desktop environment called Maui Shell designed to look good and function well on just about any device no matter the screen size, which makes it an interesting option for phones, tablets, laptops, and desktop computers – or devices that are designed to work as one or more of those, like a phone that can be used as a desktop when an external display is connected.

    • Distributions

      • New Releases

        • Q4OS 4.8 Gemini, stable

          An update to Q4OS 4 Gemini LTS has been released. The new 4.8 series receives the recent Debian Bullseye 11.3 update, updated Debian stable kernel and important security and bug fixes. This update brings along significant Q4OS specific improvements, fixes and a cumulative upgrade covering all the changes from the previous stable Gemini release. Among other improvements, localization and languages support API library for the Desktop profiler as well as for other Q4OS tools has been rewritten and vastly improved, Setup tool gets polished and installation process has been more secured.

          We welcome everyone to download installation media images from the Downloads section of the Q4OS website. We are currently pushing all the changes mentioned above into the Q4OS repositories, automatic update process will take care about to update computers for current users.

      • SUSE/OpenSUSE

        • Leap Micro Beta Available for Testers

          People browsing through openSUSE’s websites may spot something new on get.opensuse.org.

          Leap Micro, which is currently showing the 5.2 beta version, is for containerized and virtualized workloads. It is immutable and ideal for host-containers and described as an ultra-reliable, lightweight operating system that experts can use for compute deployments. The community version of Leap Micro is based on SUSE Linux Enterprise Micro and leverages the enterprise hardened security of twins SUSE Linux Enterprise and openSUSE Leap, which merges this to a modern, immutable, developer-friendly OS platform.

          Leap Micro has several use cases for edge, embedded/IoT deployments and more. Leap Micro is well suited for decentralized computing environments, microservices, distributed computing projects and more. The release will help developers and IT professionals to build and scale systems for uses in aerospace, telecommunications, automotive, defense, healthcare, robotics, blockchain and more. Leap Micro provides automated administration and patching.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • FedoraAnaconda is getting a new suit and a wizard – Fedora Community Blog

          In January, we published “Anaconda is getting a new suit” to let you know that we’re looking to modernize and improve Anaconda’s user experience. Before starting the redesign work for the Anaconda installer, the team reviewed user feedback and usability study data that we’ve gathered over the years.


          We sorted the feedback into high-level groupings. One of the larger groupings focused on the current installer navigation model, often referred to as “hub and spoke.” In a “hub and spoke” model, the summary screen, known as a “hub”, is the central point. Individual configuration screens are known as “spokes”. The phrase is commonly used today for airport connections because passengers often have to change flights at a central airport—or hub—instead of flying directly between two airports.

      • Debian Family

        • 9to5LinuxTails 5.0 Enters Beta Testing as First Release Based on Debian GNU/Linux 11 “Bullseye”

          Due out next month, Tails 5.0 will be a major update to this GNU/Linux distribution for anonymous surfing of the Internet and the first version to be based on the latest Debian GNU/Linux 11 “Bullseye” operating system series.

        • TailsCall for testing: 5.0~beta1

          We plan to release Tails 5.0 on May 3 or May 31. It will be the first version of Tails based on Debian 11 (Bullseye). It brings new versions of most of the software included in Tails and some important usability improvements.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Make Use OfUbuntu MATE 22.04 Hits Beta, and “Jammy Jellyfish” Is Looking Good So Far

          The 22.04 beta release allows Ubuntu Mate users to test the system with added features but a reduced installation image size.

        • ZDNetUbuntu 22.04 beta has arrived and it’s one of the best releases from Canonical yet

          Linux on the desktop continues to grow in popularity. Although it doesn’t enjoy the consumer market share of Android, Windows, iOS, or macOS, the open-source operating system on the server end is massively popular within enterprise businesses. But little by little, Linux continues climbing up the market share ladder. One reason for this is Ubuntu.

          For those that don’t know, Ubuntu has been, for years, one of the top 10 most popular Linux desktop distributions on the market. One of the many reasons for this is due to remarkable user-friendliness. Ubuntu is simple to install, use, and maintain, supports a wide range of hardware, just works, and (of course) is free to anyone.

        • Yahoo NewsSteelCloud Software Automates eMASS and Splunk Data Integration
        • UbuntuStanding with Ukraine [Ed: The company whose founder flew with Russia to space took 1.5 months to post this]

          In response to the Russian invasion and acts of war in Ukraine, Canonical has sent notice of termination of support, professional services, and channel partnerships with Russian enterprises. We will not resume such engagements while broad and democratically instituted sanctions on Russia remain in place.

          We will not restrict access to security patches for Ubuntu users in Russia – free software platforms like Ubuntu, VPN technologies, and Tor, are important for those who seek news and dialogue outside state control. We will direct any Russian subscription income for such maintenance to Ukrainian humanitarian causes.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Open Source InitiativeGoogle OSPO: Why we support the OSI [Ed: Distracting from the fact so much of the OSI's resources go to Microsoft, which attacks the mission?]

        This week, we’re pleased to spotlight another OSI sponsor, Google, and learn why open source is important to their organization.

      • Web Browsers

        • Mozilla

          • The Theological Problem Behind Firefox in Ubuntu 22.04

            Warning to all Ubuntu users. Starting with Ubuntu 22.04, Firefox users will be forced to migrate to the “Snap” version of Firefox. This will be done automatically. Ubuntu doesn’t provide a native Firefox anymore. You had probably been warned with Ubuntu 21.10.

            You may observe that Firefox is slower to start, that it doesn’t follow your theme anymore and other problems. But the main issue is that Snap Firefox is, by design, unable to speak to other software. In Belgium, this breaks the official Belgian id authentication.

            It should be highlighted that Belgian officials are doing a really good job at providing the official electronic ID tool for Linux (they have a Debian/Ubuntu repository) and they are well aware of the issue.

          • LWN Firefox 99.0 released
          • 99.0 Firefox Release
          • OMG UbuntuFirefox 99 Released with GTK Overlay Scrollbar Support, Fixes

            What’s new? Well, a lots of folks, including Mozilla are hyped about Firefox 99’s support for GTK overlay scrollbars. These slimmer page sliders hide when not in use but appear on scroll and increase in size when you interact with them.

            Thing is they aren’t enabled by default in the stable version, just the beta and nightly builds. So to enjoy GTK overlay scrollbars in Firefox 99 on your system you need to dive into the browser’s about:config page and set the widget.gtk.overlay-scrollbars.enabled setting to true…

          • VideoFirefox DYING is TERRIBLE for the Web – Invidious
      • FSF

        • GNU Projects

          • GNU Health declared Digital Public Good

            We are very proud to announce that the GNU Health project has been declared a Digital Public Good by the Digital Public Goods Alliance (DPGA). GNU Solidario received the announcement this Sunday, April 3rd 2022.

            The Digital Public Goods Alliance is a multi-stakeholder initiative endorsed by the United Nations Secretary-General, working to accelerate the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals in low-and middle-income countries by facilitating the discovery, development, use of, and investment in digital public goods.

      • Programming/Development

        • OpenSource.comWhat Git aliases are in your .bashrc? | Opensource.com

          Many open source users love a good Bash alias and are usually happy to show off a particularly robust .bashrc file when given the chance. If you’re a frequent user of Git, you might benefit from a few Git aliases mixed in with your other Bash aliases. Alternately, you can create aliases specific to Git with this git config command. This example sets the git co command to git checkout.

        • Cython is 20! | Stefans Welt

          Today, Cython celebrates its 20th anniversary!

          On April 4th, 2002, Greg Ewing published the first release of Pyrex 0.1.

          Already at the time, it was invented and designed as a compiler that extended the Python language with C data types to build extension modules for CPython. A design that survived the last 20 years, and that made Pyrex, and then Cython, a major corner stone of the Python data ecosystem. And way beyond that.

          Now, on April 4th, 2022, its heir Cython is still very much alive and serves easily hundreds of thousands of developers worldwide, day to day.

          I’m very grateful for Greg’s ingenious invention at the time. Let’s look back at how we got to where we are today.

        • LWNBehnel: Cython is 20! [LWN.net]

          On his blog, Stefan Behnel writes about the 20th anniversary of Cython, which is a compiler for Python extensions written in C, for wrapping C libraries in order to provide Python bindings for them, and for embedding Python into other applications. It is used by NumPy, scikit-learn (and other scikit-* extensions), pandas, and more.

        • Dirk EddelbuettelDirk Eddelbuettel: RcppSpdlog 0.0.8 on CRAN: Upstream Update

          A new version 0.0.8 of RcppSpdlog is now on CRAN. RcppSpdlog bundles spdlog, a wonderful header-only C++ logging library with all the bells and whistles you would want that was written by Gabi Melman, and also includes fmt by Victor Zverovich.

        • Dirk EddelbuettelDirk Eddelbuettel: RcppArmadillo on CRAN: Upstream Updates

          Armadillo is a powerful and expressive C++ template library for linear algebra aiming towards a good balance between speed and ease of use with a syntax deliberately close to a Matlab. RcppArmadillo integrates this library with the R environment and language–and is widely used by (currently) 972 other packages on CRAN, downloaded over 24 million times (per the partial logs from the cloud mirrors of CRAN), and the CSDA paper (preprint / vignette) by Conrad and myself has been cited 465 times according to Google Scholar.

        • Dirk EddelbuettelRInside 0.2.17

          A new release 0.2.17 of RInside arrived on CRAN and in Debian today. This is the first release in two years since the 0.2.16 release. RInside provides a set of convenience classes which facilitate embedding of R inside of C++ applications and programs, using the classes and functions provided by Rcpp.

        • Rust

          • Rust Lang Roadmap for 2024

            Rust 1.0 was released in 2015. Since that time, we’ve seen Rust grow from a small language used for a handful of prominent projects into a mainstay in use at virtually every major tech company.

            As we work towards Rust 2024, it’s natural to ask what’s next for the language. This roadmap provides insight into that question by describing what we, as members of the lang team with input from other Rust teams, would like to prioritize.

  • Leftovers

    • Hardware

      • Peter ‘CzP’ CzanikThe cult of Amiga and SGI, or why workstations matter | Random thoughts of Peter ‘CzP’ Czanik

        I’m considered to be a server guy. I had access to some really awesome server machines. Still, when computers come up in discussions, we are almost exclusively talk about workstations. Even if servers are an important part of my life, that’s “just” work. I loved the SGI workstations I had access to during my university years. Many of my friends still occasionally boot their 30 years old Amiga boxes.


        I started my IT life with x86: an XT then 286, 486, and so on. I used some really powerful RS/6000 machines remotely at Dartmouth College. I learned basics of scripting on them, how to exit from vi, and few more things. But it was just a bit of curiosity, not any kind of attachment. I also had access to Macs there, but I never really liked it, as MacOS felt a kind of dumb, and does so ever since.

        Fast forward a few years. Soon after I started university I became part of the student team at the faculty IT department. When a couple of SGI workstations arrived there, I got user access, and soon admin access as well. This is where I first used Netscape Navigator, ran Java applications, and enjoyed running a GUI on a UNIX machine.

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Pseudo-Open Source

          • Privatisation/Privateering

            • Linux Foundation

              • FSFEEuropean Parliament recognises Free Software as key for fair AI

                The Special Committee on Artificial Intelligence in a Digital Age (AIDA) of the European Parliament voted on its resolution on Artificial Intelligence in a Digital Age on March 22nd, and underlined the importance of Free Software for AI with a broad majority. We now ask EU co-legislators to take this position into account and to include provisions and guidelines on Free Software in the upcoming legislation.

                Public authorities using AI systems should make them publicly available. Public research inventing AI systems should make them publicly available. Transparency in AI technologies is necessary to test them, evaluate their results, and improve them. The FSFE is following closely the legislative process and analysed how AI can remain verifiable and trustworthy as well as lead to further innovation with Free Software.

              • Linux Foundation’s Site/BlogAI is better with open source [Ed: Produced using proprietary software]

                Open Source Software (OSS) is a proven model that delivers tangible benefits to businesses, including improved time-to-market, reduced costs, and increased flexibility. OSS is pervasive in the technology landscape and beyond it, with adoption across multiple industries. In a 2022 survey by Red Hat, 95 percent of IT leaders said they are using open source in their IT infrastructure, which will only increase.

              • I ProgrammerApplications Open For LiFT Scholarships [Ed: Lots of this paid-for webspam]
        • Security

          • LWNSecurity updates for Tuesday [LWN.net]

            Security updates have been issued by Arch Linux (polkit, postgresql, and zlib), openSUSE (389-ds and opera), Red Hat (kpatch-patch), SUSE (389-ds and util-linux), and Ubuntu (waitress).

          • security things in Linux v5.10 « codeblog

            Linux v5.10 was released in December, 2020. Here’s my summary of various security things that I found interesting:

            seccomp user_notif file descriptor injection
            Sargun Dhillon added the ability for SECCOMP_RET_USER_NOTIF filters to inject file descriptors into the target process using SECCOMP_IOCTL_NOTIF_ADDFD. This lets container managers fully emulate syscalls like open() and connect(), where an actual file descriptor is expected to be available after a successful syscall. In the process I fixed a couple bugs and refactored the file descriptor receiving code.

          • LWNCook: Security things in Linux v5.10 [LWN.net]

            Kees Cook catches up with the security-related changes in the 5.10 kernel, released at the end of 2020.

          • Matthew Garrettmjg59 | Bearer tokens are just awful

            As I mentioned last time, bearer tokens are not super compatible with a model in which every access is verified to ensure it’s coming from a trusted device. Let’s talk about that in a bit more detail.

          • CISACISA Adds Four Known Exploited Vulnerabilities to Catalog
          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • Bruce SchneierHackers Using Fake Police Data Requests against Tech Companies – Schneier on Security

              Brian Krebs has a detailed post about hackers using fake police data requests to trick companies into handing over data.


              The “credentials” are even more insecure than we could have imagined: access to an email address. And the data, of course, isn’t very secure. But imagine how this kind of thing could be abused with a law enforcement encryption backdoor.

            • MakeTech Easier4 Ways Google Tracks You and How to Stop it

              From Gmail and Google Photos to Google searches and other online activities, the tech giant tracks all your movements. Almost anything connected with Google (hardware and software) gathers your personal information. However, the tech giant insists it doesn’t spy on you with malicious intent. Instead, your collected details are used to enhance the performance of its services and tools.

            • AccessNowFacing the consequences: Access Now welcomes legal action against NSO Group – Access Now

              Access Now welcomes the new lawsuit filed today, April 5, in France against the Israeli spyware company NSO Group for facilitating the unlawful surveillance of French-Palestinian human rights defender, Salah Hammouri, through the use of its spyware Pegasus.

              The legal action was submitted jointly by the International Federation of Human Rights (FIDH), the Human Rights League (LDH), and Salah Hammouri.


              “Litigation remains an important tool in the fight against spyware abuses,” said Natalia Krapiva, Tech-Legal Counsel at Access Now. “Spyware companies like NSO Group and states that use their technologies should know: you will be held accountable.”

              Access Now reiterates its call to the European Union to urgently sanction NSO Group and take all appropriate action to prohibit the sale, transfer, and use of NSO Group’s surveillance technologies until adequate human rights safeguards are in place.

            • Citizen LabPeace through Pegasus: Jordanian Human Rights Defenders and Journalists [cr]acked with Pegasus Spyware – The Citizen Lab

              Jordanian human rights defenders (HRDs) work in a generally hostile environment. Since the Arab Spring in 2011, grassroots protests have emerged, reflecting growing discontent with government corruption and wealth inequality, among other issues. In response, authorities have often arrested activists and curtailed freedoms.

              Jordan saw a wave of protests in 2011, as part of the Arab Spring. Protests were driven partly by the Hirak, groups of youth activists not connected with traditional centres of political power in Jordan. Protests flared up again in June 2018, galvanised by a government plan to increase taxes and reduce subsidies, as required by the International Monetary Fund (IMF). More than 30 trade unions called a general strike, and protesters occupied the Fourth Circle area of Amman near the Prime Minister’s office. In response, the government temporarily withdrew the bill, and re-introduced it in September 2018 with minor changes. When the bill’s final text was published in the Official Gazette in December 2018, activists once again held protests in the Fourth Circle that persisted into 2019. In March 2019, Jordanian authorities began a wave of arrests against Hirak members, charging them with “insulting the King” and “undermining the political regime.”

            • Authoritarians love smart cities. Russia is no exception

              Authoritarians love smart cities projects.

              Vladimir Putin is no exception. Moscow has been on a mission to become a smart city for the last decade. Russia’s capital has around 200,000 surveillance cameras. That’s more cameras per square mile than in Beijing or New York. In October 2021, the Moscow Metro launched a facial recognition payment system. Branded as a quick, contactless way of paying ride fares, it was also used for surveillance. Since September 2020, almost 3,000 criminals have been caught in the Moscow Metro because of the system, according to city authorities. But the extreme crackdown on dissent triggered by the war in Ukraine makes Moscow’s technological advances terrifying for anyone who opposes the government.

              Since the start of war in Ukraine, speaking out against the government has become incredibly risky for the Russians. Over 15,000 people have been detained for protesting and anyone who does as little as sharing a social media post that contradicts the official position risks a 15-year prison sentence.

  • Defence/Aggression

    • How to document war crimes in the digital age

      The stories coming out of Bucha, a small city near Kyiv that was under Russian occupation since early March, are horrific. Witnesses have described scenes of torture, summary executions and mass graves. Journalists who accompanied Ukrainian troops moving into the city have reported seeing civilian corpses along the road, some with their hands tied behind their backs, others with a gun blow to the head.

      This adds to the growing pile of evidence that Russian troops have perpetrated war crimes in Ukraine. On April 4, President Biden called for Russian President Vladimir Putin to be brought to trial. The European Union created a Joint Investigation Team with Ukraine that will collect and process evidence that can be brought before the International Criminal Court.

    • The Washington Post4,000 letters and four hours of sleep: Ukrainian leader wages digital war
    • PoliticoUkraine minister pleads to expand ‘digital blockade’ on Russia
  • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

    • I Answer Questions, Part III

      In the last couple of years I’ve mostly seen talk about how the Internet hasn’t fulfilled its promise of making the world better. Centralised social media, algorithmic amplification, the control of military drones or state surveillance, proof or work cryptocurrencies.

    • Ukraine’s Internet System Is A Hidden Weapon In The War (VIDEO)

      Ukraine’s ability to keep its internet up and running has allowed its citizens to stay connected to the world despite Russia’s invasion.

      Since the beginning of the invasion of Ukraine, Russia has launched cyberattacks and missiles that have knocked out large portions of the country’s internet, but it’s failed to push Ukrainians completely offline thanks to a robust telecommunications system.

      “Unlike a much smaller country that may rely on just a couple of connections out to the outside world, there is a rich fiber optic backbone connecting the cities of Ukraine,” said Doug Madory, director of internet analysis at Kentik. “If one line gets cut, there’s other paths to get around it.”

      “We haven’t seen very long-term outages for the larger providers,” said Amanda Meng, research scientist at Georgia Tech. “For some smaller operators, we do see disconnections that we’ve seen for weeks.”

    • PoliticoThe West’s plan to keep global data flows alive

      U.S. President Joe Biden and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen just secured a political agreement to keep data flowing between the European Union and the United States.

      But with EU and U.S. negotiators still hammering out details on the new transatlantic data pact — and legal challenges expected once the deal is completed — policymakers are already scrambling to shore up the free flow of data across the Western world.

      The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, a Paris-based group of mostly rich countries, may have an answer.

  • Digital Restrictions (DRM)

    • MashableHow to stop Spotify from sharing your data, and why you should

      It sounds like the setup to a bad joke, but the wildly popular music streaming service in fact collects, stores, and shares reams of seemingly mundane user data, adding up to an intrusion that’s much more than just the sum of its parts. While Spotify customers are busy rocking out, the company has its metaphorical hands full profiting off the data that rocking generates.
      And it generates a surprising amount. What Spotify does with that data, and why that should concern you, are complex questions involving third-party advertisers, densely written terms of service, and inferences drawn from every piece of music or podcast you’ve ever listened to on the streaming platform.
      But according to privacy experts, one aspect of this digital mess is absolutely straightforward: Spotify users should pay attention to how their data is used, and take the available steps to limit that use whenever possible.

Linux Foundation Starts Hiding What Software It Uses to Make Reports (But Readers Can Guess)

Posted in Deception, GNU/Linux at 3:43 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Hours ago:

LF report: AI better

LF report AI report

LF report
The so-called ‘Linux’ Foundation (LF) went out of its way — yet again! (e.g. forgery) — to hide its use of proprietary software for an “Open Source” report. Judging by the format, it’s the same as the last time/s. But people pointing out the hypocrisy is irksome to the LF’s spinners.

Summary: It would be nice to think that the Linux Foundation quit using proprietary software for its reports on "Open Source"; but if that happened, it would not hide the metadata (as shown above)

[Video/Meme] Passengers Are Leaving Gulag Behind

Posted in Google, Videos at 12:12 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

New video

Are you a Linux user? No, I use Linux users for 'content' and then ban them
Who is Gulag trying to impress or appeal to?

Summary: Gulag’s (Google’s) exploitative relationship with GNU/Linux (the software, its users, developers, creators) needs to be better understood

KDE Neon Added to the Workspace (or ‘Battle Station’)

Posted in GNU/Linux, KDE at 11:45 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Video download link | md5sum 565a24e5141619e4c34e05504d36a29b
My New Workspace
Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 4.0

Summary: A quick tour through the current setup and how tasks are split/spread across different machines

TEN days ago I abandoned my previous workspace as I needed more space and access to a door (in case it gets too hot in summer). The video above explains the way I use 6 machines in tandem and 9 screens in total, as some people have asked how I manage them or utilise the equipment’s potential. There’s no energy-hungry GPU and screens switch off while idle (or when I’m away), so energy consumption isn’t as bad as it may seem.

In a later video I wish to show some of the very nice features of KDE Neon”>KDE Neon, which is what I installed on the new machine. It was needed due to SSD problems.

Marleen Stikker, Author of ‘The Internet is Broken’, on Research Institute Waag

Posted in Free/Libre Software at 11:05 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Video download link

Summary: This keynote talk was uploaded a week ago. “Marleen is founder of Waag, a social organization and research institute for creative technologies and social innovation. The prolific advocate for free, honest, and inclusive technology, and honorary PhD, is also founder of The Digital City (1993), a group that provides free public access to the Internet in Amsterdam, and author of the book “Het Internet is Stuk” (The Internet is Broken).”

Licence: CC BY SA 4.0

[Meme] Meanwhile at IP Kat

Posted in Deception, Europe, Patents at 10:57 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

I learned to stop worrying and ignore EPO scandals
The EPO’s aggression has ‘ousted’ the people behind Merpel

Summary: Over the past month or so IP Kat wrote just 2 posts about patents; it has said nothing about EPO abuses since several years ago

The EPO is Granting Loads of Software Patents in Order to Fake ‘Growth’

Posted in Europe, Patents at 10:28 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Video download link | md5sum f931ca2049b8412eab44b12a7fc3534f
The EPO Deception
Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 4.0

Summary: ‘Growth’ at the EPO is pretty much faked; the management crafted (e.g. by legal fudge) paperwork, conditions and unlawful guidelines by which to routinely crush the European Patent Convention (EPC), calling software patents “Hey Hi” (AI) or “MedTech” and all sorts of other novelty-sounding buzzwords

THE EPO‘s regime, a corrupt collective led by Benoît Battistelli and his friends (including António Campinos, his friend who brought many of his own friends from Alicante), is little but a propaganda operation at this stage. As shown in the video above, perhaps most of the EPO’s patents are nowadays European software patents. They’re faking ‘growth’ by granting lots of invalid patents that don’t comply with the EPC.

“They’re faking ‘growth’ by granting lots of invalid patents that don’t comply with the EPC.”To make matters worse, if one looks at this year’s ‘news’ section (lies section) (warning: epo.org link) of the EPO’s Web site, it is based not on reality but on fiction. This latest post (warning: epo.org link), dated today, is entitled “[p]atent applications in Europe reach record level in 2021″ and it comes shortly after EPO staff shared figures showing a massive collapse in the number of EPO grants, owing of course to industrial actions. The collapse in patent quality is driving fake ‘demand’ and the EPO has just openly admitted that about 80% of applications come from megacorporations, few of which are actually European. So who or what is the EPO actually for? Whose agenda is being advanced now that EPO management breaks laws, violates constitutions, and trashes the EPC? The whole point of the EPC was to prevent the agenda being warped so badly and granting authority being subjected to perverse distortion/misinterpretation. As noted in yesterday’s comment (the last one on the sole coverage of EPO strikes this past month, except our coverage) :

Assessment of « quality « which relies on revocation or nullification decisions seems logical when taking a legal approach. But it can only be based on a very small percentage of granted patents and takes place years, sometimes many years after the grant. In addition, the context in terms of the resources devoted by the parties and thoroughness of the review by the BOA or the court is quite different from the context of examination proceedings. This is why I do not think such an assessment can yield meaningful conclusions.
I agree with your concern regarding the difference between T 1989/18 and T 1024/18 over the requirement to adapt the description to the claim as granted. This is important practically speaking for applicants since it affects a great deal of applications. My personal view is that the adaptation is useless but entails additional costs and delays and opens up potential 123(2) issues.
Another recent decision, T 0550/14 relating to a business method (Managing funding of catastrophe relief efforts), while it suggests an interesting approach to the assessment of what is « non-technical », does not seem to comply with the approach of the case law of the BOAs (2019, 1.4.1) which rejects the approach of the contribution to the prior art, and is at loggerheads with T 2101/12 (Vasco) over the definition of the skilled person and of the closest prior art. T 2101/12 was issued by BOA 3.5.06, not by BOA 3.5.01 which has issued T 0550/14.

Ask the EPO’s own staff about patent quality. They know very well what’s going on as examiners see it firsthand. Some of them are constantly bullied into granting software patents against their well.

“The media is bribed and blackmailed to pretend all is well in EPOnia”See the above for more information. There’s a bunch of very decent comments in there and the latest one, shown in the video, says the above (it’s the last comment that can be posted due to time-limited posting periods).

We probably won’t be hearing about the EPO’s strike anymore. The media is bribed and blackmailed to pretend all is well in EPOnia. The strike was never a secret.

Links 05/04/2022: Antitrust Day

Posted in News Roundup at 8:13 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Applications

      • Lagrange v1.12: Export/Import, Bottom Bars, Visual Evolution

        March was full steam ahead for Lagrange, and I ended up addressing a bunch of long-standing issues. The original idea of making page layout more flexible didn’t really get worked on yet, apart from one new style option. However, many of the UI widgets underwent visual evolution.

      • Announcing Crabmail

        I am happy to announce the first release of a project I’ve been working on for a while, Crabmail.

      • Top 6 apps to read and organize comic books on Linux

        Comic books have been an important part of popular culture and media for many decades now. Be it the depiction of web-slinging, superhuman strength, or just someone doing extreme things simply through their willpower, comic books have been an outlet of beautiful human creativity and will continue to be so.

        With the digitization of everything else, comic books have to become available to users in digital formats. All you need is an application that can read the format of the comic book, and you can start your adventure.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • Ruben SchadeTrack skipping from ripped CDs

        The title of this post sounds like someone from the 1990s observing VCR distortion, or a 1970s audiophile worried about tape tension on their reel-to-reel machine. How does a track skip? What’s ripping a CD? How does doing the latter cause the former?

        There are people using streaming services today who’ve never bought music, or ripped a CD, or browsed an HVM, Tower Records, or Sembawang Music. I’ve spilled enough electronic ink worrying about why that’s a bad thing for artists, so in this case I merely bring it up as a generational observation. Ripping CDs must seem as foreign as faxing a document, tuning in at a specific time on the TV, or having digital privacy.

        Wait, ouch.

      • BSDlySpammers in the Public Cloud, Protected by SPF; Intensified Password Groping Still Ongoing; Spamware Hawked to Spamtraps

        This past week was truly one for the blooper reel. A public cloud service provider let the great unwashed into the address ranges published as safe mailers via their SPF records, with hilarious if rather predictable results. Next up, we find an intensive advertising campaign for spamware aimed at our imaginary friends. And the password guessing aimed at an ever-expanding dictionary of non-existing users continues.

      • Linux CapableHow to Install MariaDB on Arch Linux

        MariaDB is one of the most popular open-source databases next to its originator MySQL. The original creators of MySQL developed MariaDB in response to fears that MySQL would suddenly become a paid service due to Oracle acquiring it in 2010. With its history of doing similar tactics, the developers behind MariaDB have promised to keep it open source and free from such fears as what has happened to MySQL.

        MariaDB has become just as popular as MySQL with developers, with advanced clustering with Galera Cluster 4, faster cache/indexes, storage engines, and features/extensions that you won’t find in MySQL.

        In the following tutorial, you will learn how to install MariaDB on Arch Linux. The tutorial will install the database software using the Pacman package manager using the command line and some essential tips on securing MariaDB.

      • 5 Keys to Optimizing Application Container Testing

        Developers are increasingly using application containers, but how do you make sure they are safe and properly tested for performance?

      • Install DBeaver on Debian 10/Debian 11 – kifarunix.com

        Follow through this tutorial to learn how to install DBeaver on Debian 10/Debian 11. DBeaver is free and open source universal database tool for developers and database administrators.

      • UNIX CopHow to install Cockpit on Debian 11? – Unix / Linux the admins Tutorials

        Follow through this tutorial to learn how to install DBeaver on Debian 10/Debian 11. DBeaver is free and open source universal database tool for developers

      • How To Add SSH Key To Server | Itsubuntu.com

        In this tutorial, we will show you the methods to copy the public ssh key to the server. The public-key authentication method requires you to copy your public SSH key to the server’s authorized_keys file. You might be wondering why we need to add the SSH key to the server as the reason to add ssh key to the server is to allow you to access a server via SSH without a password. Here are two methods to copy the public ssh key to the server.

      • How to Use Tags in Ansible Playbook (Examples)

        Sometimes, you might want to run specific tasks instead of running an entire playbook file. This helps to reduce the total playbook execution time, especially when dealing with a large playbook file.

    • Games

      • Ted UnangstFantasian

        Fantasian is an Apple Arcade exclusive Final Fantasy style RPG. I liked it.

        I first found out about the game a year ago, seeing some screenshots and reading articles about the art style, which relies on real world dioramas. It seemed intriguing, but it was Arcade exclusive, so I swore I’d never get to play it, because why would I ever sign up for that. Fast forward a few months, I’m tired of my crap Roku, I buy an Apple TV, and it includes a few months of free Arcade. Okay, I’ll sign up.

      • PC World29 years later, classic Doom just got a stunning ray tracing mod

        This isn’t the first time we’ve seen a juxtaposition of high-tech lighting over low-tech visuals. The famously blocky Minecraft has official Nvidia-branded RTX support, and Nvidia rebuilt Quake II to show off what full-blown path tracing can look like. But the Doom mod is available for free to every PC player. It’s also particularly dramatic in Doom’s sci-fi setting, a Martian colony infested with hoards of ravenous demons. Realistically rendered shadows and reflections from fireballs, plasma ammunition, and pools of lava show off precisely how much good lighting can do, even for Doom’s incredibly basic polygon environments and sprite enemies.

      • The VergeValve says it’s ‘ramping up’ Steam Deck shipments

        It’s Monday, and Valve has sent its next weekly batch of Steam Deck order emails to people who have reserved one of the coveted handheld gaming PCs. But if you are still eagerly waiting for your email to come through, there’s good news: Valve says it’s “ramping up” Steam Deck shipments, sending more order emails every week, and “sometimes” plans to send them twice per week.

      • Ubuntu Pit5 Best Zombie Games for Linux: Play To Get A Thrilling Experience

        Among all the gaming genres, Zombie games always have a separate fan base. It’s because most of the zombie games are not just games with a lot of dead zombies. But they are the perfect combination of several genres like FPS, survival, horror games, adventure games, and so on. Even also, horror games lovers prioritize zombie games exceptionally. However, there are lots of exciting zombie games for Linux you can try. And today we will talk about some of them.

      • GamingOnLinuxWine manager ‘Bottles’ improves Steam Proton support, adds configurable environments | GamingOnLinux

        Bottles, a free and open source application for Linux (that works well on the Steam Deck), has another new release out bringing in major new features.

        Since a previous version, it came with support for pre-configured environments (Gaming and Applications), which has been massively extended in version 2022.3.28. Now, you can setup your own configuration and share these environments with others, so in a way it’s sliding closer to some capabilities of Lutris. These environments are configured with a YAML file making them easy to parse and read.

        On top of that, there’s improved support for Steam Play Proton directly. It’s under heavy development and still experimental but Bottles can now read Steam Launch Options for games installed via Proton and deal with them in Bottles directly and configure certain settings in Bottles. This eventually might make it far easier than manually editing Steam launch options.

      • GamingOnLinuxProject Hospital gets big Steam Deck improvements in Patch 39 | GamingOnLinux

        Project Hospital, a management sim from Oxymoron Games was recently upgraded to make playing on Steam Deck a better experience. Here’s what’s new.

      • GamingOnLinuxReturn to Monkey Island announced for 2022

        Devolver Digital, Lucasfilm Games and Ron Gilbert have announced something huge for adventure game fans, with Return to Monkey Island on the way to release in 2022. A series adored by many, with this one taking place following on from Secret of Monkey Island and Monkey Island 2: LeChuck’s Revenge.

        Technically, this was announced on April 1 on Gilbert’s official blog post that stated: “For 18 years the Grumpy Gamer blog has been April Fools’ day free because it’s a stupid tradition.

      • GamingOnLinuxSteam Deck Plugin Loader gets upgraded, easier to install | GamingOnLinux

        Want to mod the Steam Deck? SteamOS Plugin Manager (covered here previously) has been renamed to just Plugin Loader and it’s had a bit of a Python rewrite recently to make it better. As a result, it’s now far easier to install too, along with having its first proper initial release.

      • GamingOnLinuxdbrand now have Steam Deck Skins and Wraps | GamingOnLinux

        Want to customize your Steam Deck look to match your style? Well, at least with dbrand now you can and they have some nice looking choices to mix together.

        On their system you can order (each being separate and costing extra): a front skin ($19.95), back skin ($14.95), trackpad skins ($4.95) and tempered glass screen protectors (two pack $24.95). There’s 28 different skin colours or patterns in total, so you can really make something wild — or nice and tame, whatever you want.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • Its FOSSMaui Shell’s First Alpha Release Looks Promising

          Even before its release, Maui shell has been praised as the future of the Linux desktop user interface.

          And, for all the right reasons…

          It attempts to bring convergence to the mainstream, just like Canonical tried with Unity. Regarding looks, you get modern aesthetics inspired by various existing desktop experiences.

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • Its FOSSHere’s What Devs Are Planning for GNOME 43

          It hasn’t been that long since GNOME 42 was released.

          While it was an exciting upgrade over GNOME 41, you may not be able to find it on every mainstream Linux distribution (except OpenSUSE, Arch, and Clear Linux).

          Fedora 36 and Ubuntu 22.04 should be the most popular options featuring GNOME 42 with their releases in the following weeks.

    • Distributions

      • Unix SheikhLinux distribution long term support might not be what you think it is

        A Linux distribution cannot normally provide any kind of long term support for any kind of third party software if such software is no longer supported by upstream.

      • Gentoo Family

        • GentooNew Gentoo LiveGUI ISO and artwork / branding contest! [Ed: Now also in the main Gentoo site]

          After a long break, we now have again a weekly LiveGUI ISO image for amd64 available! The 4.7 GB download, suitable for DVD burning or an USB stick, boots directly into KDE Plasma and comes with a ton of up-to-date software. This ranges from office applicactions such as LibreOffice, Inkscape, and Gimp all the way to many system administrator tools.

          Now, we need your help! Let’s make this the coolest and most beautiful Linux live image ever. We’re calling for submissions of artwork, themes, actually anything from a desktop background to a boot manager animation, on the topic of Gentoo! The winning entry will be added as default setting to the official LiveGUI images, and also be available for download and installation.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • FSF

        • FSFAntitrust Day: Tech monopolies shouldn’t be allowed to control app stores

          Today is Antitrust Day, a day of action organized by Fight for the Future, dedicated to mobilizing support for two tech antitrust bills currently on the US Senate floor: the Open App Markets Act (OAMA), and the American Innovation and Choice Online Act (AICOA). Though these are two separate bills, their general focus remains the same: preventing large tech corporations from behaviors that that take away people’s freedom. Chief among these is the common practice of some devices only allowing one specific app store, or making it very hard to use any app store but one. While much of the conversation around these bills is focused on promoting competition, that is not the key value for us. The key value is freedom, and in this case, the measures being targeted as anti-competitive are also measures that take away user freedom. Removing Apple’s ability to block all app repositories but their own on the devices they produce would allow freedom-respecting ones to enter the scene, and provide users of these devices with the first step to their freedom.

          We’ve written previously on the way “bad apples” like Apple and Google take great pains to restrict what users can and can’t do with their devices. Platforms like these are skilled at giving users the illusion of autonomy and freedom. There’s an app for every need, or so it seems, but there’s a sinister reality behind the glossy finish. It’s true that the overwhelming majority of these apps are nonfree software, which is overtly malware, but it’s less common that users get to see the way corporations like Apple are pulling the strings behind the scenes, driving our use of technology further and further away from being in our control. Apple likes to present the gatekeeping they do as a form of quality assurance. The exact same quality assurance benefits could be had in a world where users had the freedom to to either stay with Apple or go to someone else they trust more to provide the same services without having to change their physical device.

        • GNU Projects

          • JoinupGNU Health declared a Digital Public Good by the DPGA

            We are very proud to announce that the GNU Health project has been declared a Digital Public Good by the Digital Public Goods Alliance (DPGA). GNU Solidario received the announcement this Sunday, April 3rd 2022.

            The Digital Public Goods Alliance is a multi-stakeholder initiative endorsed by the United Nations Secretary-General, working to accelerate the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals in low-and middle-income countries by facilitating the discovery, development, use of, and investment in digital public goods.

          • FSFMarch GNU Spotlight with Amin Bandali: Eleven new GNU releases!

            Hello! I’m Amin Bandali, and starting this month I’m taking over the GNU Spotlight from my fellow GNU hacker and free software activist Mike Gerwitz. Mike, thank you so much for all your work over the past four years for curating and preparing the monthly GNU Spotlight, which is a personal favorite part of the Free Software Supporter for me. I will do my best to continue in your steps in bringing exciting news on new releases of GNU packages to our dear readers.

        • Licensing/Legal

          • NCSNTNew security requirements introduced for medical device manufacturer

            In response, the Linux report showed that many hospitals are adding the SBOM requirements into their procurement contracts. However, many leaders don’t know how to examine an SBOM, the package manager listings, or open source licensing distribution lists to find risky elements.

            As such, even if the PATCH Act passes and the SOMB requirement is added, it’s unclear whether the legislation would also add needed educational elements to make SOMBs more user-friendly. As Abrahamson explained, “Only the manufacturer of the device will have the engineering knowledge of the device required to make this determination.”

            Despite these challenges, the FDA has advocated for continued transparency around device elements and risks through the SBOM. In its latest budget request, the agency asked for a $5 million budget increase to develop “a more comprehensive cybersecurity program for medical devices,” including identifying and remediating device flaws that pose a national security risk.

            The proposed bills come on the heels of separate healthcare legislation introduced on Apr. 25, which would see the Department of Health and Human Services partnering with Cybersecurity Infrastructure Security Agency to improve the sector’s overall infrastructure.

      • Openness/Sharing/Collaboration

        • Open Access/Content

          • Torrent FreakSci-Hub Only Option For Academics In Russia After Major Publishers Pull Out

            Fifteen major publishers, together representing an almost global monopoly on scientific papers, have announced a suspension of sales and services in Russia. The knowledge and information void left behind can still be filled by Sci-Hub but thanks to legal action by the publishers, not even that is straightforward.

          • Bjoern BrembsEU: Academic Publishers Are Monopolists

            The market power of academic publishers has been a concern for all those academic fields where publication in scholarly journals is the norm. For most non-economist researchers, the anti-trust aspects of academic publishing are likely confusing and opaque.

            For instance, libraries and consortia are exempted from organizing tenders for their publication needs as each article exists only in one journal with one publisher. This is called the single or sole source exemption from procurement law and essentially means that academic publishers have monopolies on each of their articles and hence each of their journals.

            At the same time, this conglomerate of monopolies is often referred to as the “publishing market“, where there is market consolidation or concentration, leading up to an “oligopoly“.

            So which is it now, a market with competing providers or a conglomerate of monopolists?

      • Programming/Development

        • Linux Links6 Best Free and Open Source Continuous Delivery Systems

          Continuous delivery (CD) is a software engineering approach in which developers produce software in short cycles, ensuring that the software can be reliably released at any time and, when releasing the software, without doing so manually. It enables team to get changes of all types such as new features, configuration changes, bug fixes and experiments—into production, or into the hands of users, safely and quickly in a reliable and consistent way.

          Following the automation of builds and unit and integration testing in CI, continuous delivery automates the release of that validated code to a repository. To have an effective continuous delivery process, it’s important that CI is already built into your development pipeline. The goal of continuous delivery is to have a codebase that is always ready for deployment to a production environment.

        • Frederic CambusToolchains adventures – Q1 2022

          This is the fourth post in my toolchains adventures series. Please check the previous posts in the toolchains category for more context about this journey.

        • Brian CallahanI wrote a simple, explainable, peephole optimizer (for cproc and QBE), part 2

          It’s time to finish up our peephole optimizer, O, that we started in the previous post. This peephole optimizer, designed to be plugged into cproc and used to fix up QBE generated amd64 assembly, provides two optimizations that we found reduced binary size by between 2% and 3%: first, a one-line optimization converting mov_ $0, %___ into xor_ %___, %___ and a three-line optimization removing a useless register-to-register self-copy via a temporary register.

        • UbuntuDesign patterns and the software operator — part 1

          As writing software turned into a more and more complex engineering effort, ideas emerged to make writing software easier and more stable: it was the idea of identifying solution patterns when implementing commonly experienced problems. Actually, many problems in programming are raised over and over again. As a consequence, communities emerged to discuss such patterns in their meetings, workshops and conferences. Descriptions about design patterns were published as conference proceedings.

        • UbuntuThe software operator design pattern — part 2

          Over the years, the software development and programming community developed a common understanding of design patterns. A design pattern is a general solution designed to solve a repeatedly occurring problem when writing — or better, designing — software. This implies that if a design is new and has not been proven to work in production software, it cannot be a pattern. A pattern is an abstract concept covering multiple implemented solutions following that abstract concept. If there are no solutions already in place, such a pattern does not exist.

        • Rust

          • TorArti 0.2.0 is released: Your somewhat-stable API is here!

            Arti is our ongoing project to create a working embeddable Tor client in Rust. It’s not ready to replace the main Tor implementation in C, but we believe that it’s the future.

            Right now, our focus is on making Arti production-quality, by stress-testing the code, hunting for likely bugs and adding missing features that we know from experience that users will need. We’re going to try not to break backward compatibility too much, but we’ll do so when we think it’s a good idea.

    • Standards/Consortia

      • Everything Smart HomeSmart Home Protocols: ZigBee Explained!

        ZigBee is also an open standard, which makes it low cost compared to some other standards.

      • Everything Smart HomeSmart Home Protocols: WiFi Explained!

        Welcome to the Smart Home Protocols Series, where we are going to be deep diving on protocols that our smart home devices use to communicate in our smart homes and we’re going to be starting with WIFI!

  • Leftovers

    • New York TimesThe Kids Are Right About Email, Too

      This generation missed the “You’ve Got Mail” era, that brief, sunny time when email was still electronic mail: long, thoughtful letters that got delivered, miraculously, in a blink. Old-timers groused even then that email could never adequately replace condolence letters or thank-you notes, much less love letters, but that was just tradition talking. In truth, “You’ve Got Mail” was a movie about a 19th-century courtship correspondence conducted via a 20th-century pony express.

      My children never got the chance to know the pleasure of a heartfelt exchange that traveled with the speed of a text but nevertheless carried the soul of the sender. All they have known is what email has devolved into: reply-all responses to bulk messages, shipping notifications, fund-raising pleas, systemwide reminders and, of course, spam. Email is now just a way to be at the beck and call of anyone, and any robot, with an internet connection.

    • Education

      • Bjoern BrembsScholarship Has No Time To Waste

        A second front was opened about ten years ago now from an entirely different and mostly unanticipated direction. More than just flush with funds, but this time financed by academia herself, academic publishers started (escalated?) their own attack on science by gobbling up and developing digital surveillance technologies. To expand the sources of user data, these corporations bought digital tools covering all aspects of academic life, from literature search, data analysis, writing, citing or outreach, all the way to citation analysis for research assessment. These corporations formerly known as publishers are using their expanded digital surveillance network to accomplish two separate goals. First, a copy of the data is aggregated with private data from scholarly users and sold, either to advertisers, to law enforcement agencies not allowed to collect such intrusive data themselves, or to any authoritarian government interested in identifying potential opposition intelligentsia. The second goal is to expand the monopolies they enjoy on scholarly content, to a monopoly on all scholarly services, i.e., the mother of all vendor lock-ins. Packaging all the different tools in a single bundle and selling it to institutions akin to subscription “Big Deals”, would make it impossible for any institution buying such a package to ever switch to a different provider again. An analogy outside of academia would be a merger of Microsoft, SAP, Google and Facebook. There are two corporations so far that are standing ready to deploy such bundles, RELX (parent of Elsevier) and Holtzbrinck (SpringerNature, Digital Science). A related data analytics corporation specializing on scholarly data is Clarivate (Web of Science, ProQuest).

        Both onslaughts aim to undermine independent scholarship and subjugate it for special interests, be it political or financial. To some extent, both have been quite successful already. In fact, in the use of journal rank and other citation metrics, the political and financial fronts have closed ranks and are cooperating. The worst outcome of succumbing to these attacks would be the destruction of publicly funded science. At best, loosing on both fronts would entail academia finding itself permanently strapped in neoliberal purgatory, with a vast precariate, cut-throat competition and results nobody can take seriously any more, in other words: Idiocracy.

    • Hardware

      • HackadayESP32: Is Two Better Than One?

        We’ve looked at the WROOM-DA module before. It’s an ESP32 with two antennas, and [Andreas Spiess] says it is the ugliest ESP32 he’s ever seen. But beauty is only skin deep, after all. Did [Andreas] find beauty in the twin antennas? Watch the video below and see for yourself.

      • HackadayDetailed Big Screen Multimeter Review

        It seems like large-screen cheap meters are really catching on. [TheHWcave] does a very detailed review of a KAIWEETS KM601, which is exactly the same as a few dozen other Chinese brands you can get from the usual sources. You can see the review in the video below.

      • HackadayRubber Band “Slide Rule” Doesn’t Slide, But Rotates

        Around here we mostly enjoy slide rules. We even have our own collections including some cylindrical and circular ones. But [Mathologer] discusses a recent Reddit post that explains a circular slide rule-like device using a wheel and a stretchable rubber band. While it probably would be difficult to build the actual device using a rubber band, it can do wonders for your understanding of logarithms which still show up in our lives when, for example, you are calculating decibels. [Dimitri] did simulate the rubber band for you in software.

      • HackadayMonitor Space Weather And The Atmosphere With Your Cellphone!

        Above our heads, the atmosphere is a complex and unpredictable soup of gasses and charged particles subject to the influence of whatever the Sun throws at it. Attempting to understand it is not for the faint-hearted, so it has for centuries been the object of considerable research. A new project from the European Space Agency and ETH Zurich gives the general public the chance to participate in that research in a small way, by crowdsourcing atmospheric data gathering to a mobile phone app. How might a mobile phone observe the atmosphere? The answer lies in their global positioning receivers, which can track minute differences in the received signals caused by atmospheric conditions. By gathering as much of this data as possible, the ESA scientists will gain valuable insights into atmospheric conditions as they change across the globe.

      • HackadayLevitate The NE555 Way

        Ultrasonic levitation — the practice of creating a standing wave between two ultrasonic sources and positioning lightweight objects such that they can float in the pressure minimums between them — has been a source of fascination to more than one experimenter. [Peter Lin] demonstrated this in the video below the break, by creating an ultrasonic levitation system using only the trusted chip of all true experimenters, the NE555. (Video, embedded below.)

      • HackadayConfessions Of A Crimpoholic

        Hi, my name is Dan and I’m a crimpoholic.

      • HackadaySAMD11 Provides Two Serial Ports For Price Of One

        While the average computer user likely hasn’t given much thought to the lowly serial port in decades, the same can’t be said for the hardware hacker. Cheap serial-to-USB adapters are invaluable for snooping debug ports or programming chips, and if you ask us, you can never have too many laying around the bench. [Quentin Bolsée] loves them so much that he’s even figured out how to build a dual-port adapter with a SAMD11C14 microcontroller.

    • Health/Nutrition/Agriculture

      • TruthOutDwindling Public Concern About COVID Is Handing Republicans a Gift
      • TruthOutWatchdog Finds DeJoy Invests in COVID Test Company, Potentially Breaking the Law
      • TruthOutPoorest US Counties Suffered Twice the COVID Deaths of the Richest
      • Common Dreams‘A Victory for the Virus’: Congress Cuts New Global Covid Aid to $0

        Republican and Democratic congressional negotiators on Monday are reportedly set to announce a $10 billion coronavirus funding package that contains no money to fight the pandemic globally, prompting outrage from public health experts who say the decision will prolong the Covid-19 crisis.

        “Failing to fund the global fight against Covid-19 is a choice to extend the pandemic, to accept preventable suffering and insecurity for all, and to live with the knowledge that, deep in the time of the world’s greatest need, the United States gave up,” tweeted Peter Maybarduk, Access to Medicines director at Public Citizen.

      • Common Dreams‘A Poor People’s Pandemic’: Poorest US Counties Suffered Twice the Covid Deaths of Richest

        A first-of-its-kind examination of the coronavirus pandemic’s impact on low-income communities published Monday shows that Covid-19 has been twice as deadly in poor counties as in wealthy ones, a finding seen as a damning indictment of the U.S. government’s pandemic response.

        “The neglect of poor and low-wealth people in this country during a pandemic is immoral, shocking, and unjust, especially in light of the trillions of dollars that profit-driven entities received,” said Rev. Dr. William Barber II, co-chair of the national Poor People’s Campaign, which conducted the new analysis alongside a team of economists and other experts.

      • OracBioethics recycles old antivax tropes about COVID vaccines for children

        Regular readers might be getting tired of my pointing out how there’s nothing new under the antivax sun in terms of deceptive arguments, conspiracy theories, and tropes designed to argue against vaccinating. However, the COVID-19 pandemic introduced these talking points to a much large audience than had ever seen them before so I considered it my duty to educate our readers and to point out that none of the antivaccine misinformation that has hit us like a tsunami since COVID-19 vaccines first entered large clinical trials in the summer of 2020 is anything new. It just seems new if you haven’t seen it before. Examples include, of course, misinformation claiming that the vaccine kills based on misinterpretation of the VAERS database; that it sterilizes our womenfolk; that it “sheds” and endangers the unvaccinated; and that it causes cancer, none of which are anything new. Even the claim that it “permanently alters your DNA”, although it might appear like a new talking point based on the fact that Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines were the first successful translations of mRNA technology into a clinical product, if you look really hard, is not a new claim. (Transhumanism, anyone?) As Charles Pierce likes to say, history is so cool. In this case, though, I’d add: It’s only cool and useful if you know about it and can use it to counter the pernicious misinformation about vaccines of the sort published by, for example, The Wall Street Journal and deconstructed by Jonathan Howard a week ago. What I didn’t expect was to see common antivaccine tropes weaponized in a bioethics journal, but that’s exactly what I saw almost two weeks ago.

      • Common DreamsOpinion | Pain at the Pumps Originates in the Paycheck

        At the height of Covid, diaper banks across the US upped their diaper contributions to communities by 86%, and we have no intention of scaling back, because the need did not diminish alongside the daily positivity rate. There are new stressors on families, of course, like rising gas prices. But if paying another 50 cents a gallon for gas means that you can no longer afford diapers for your baby, the price of gas is not the problem. Removing federal and state taxes on gas might ease the pain incrementally, but it won’t end the ongoing crisis that is poverty.

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Pseudo-Open Source

          • Privatisation/Privateering

            • Linux Foundation

              • Unicorn MediaFree Training and Certification: Linux Foundation Taking Submissions for LiFT Scholarships

                The Linux Foundation announced on Friday that it’s taking applications for LiFT (Linux Foundation Training) Scholarships through the end of the month. The scholarships, that cover the cost for the foundation’s online training courses and certification exams, have been handed out on a yearly bases under a program the foundation began in 2011.

                One of the best ways to jump start or improve a career in computer tech is through training and certifications. While there are plenty of venues offering certification programs, they’re not all created equal, and some are more valued by the people who make hiring decisions and hand out promotions than others, and certifications from the Linux Foundation are considered to be about as good as it gets.

        • Security

          • Didier Stevens.ISO Files With Office Maldocs & Protected View in Office 2019 and 2021 [iophk: Windows TCO]

            But when an Office document is stored inside an ISO file, and that ISO has a ZoneIdentifier ADS, then Word will not open the document in Protected View. That is something I observed 5 years ago.

          • Computer WorldThe Russian cyberattack threat might force a new IT stance [iophk: Windows TCO]

            Various US government agencies have warned of imminent attacks, but the very few specifics they have offered generally amount to, “Do what every enterprise CISO knows they should have done years ago.”

          • EFFAnatomy of an Android Malware Dropper

            The sample we’ll be looking at was first seen on March 1st, 2022. This particular malware presents itself as the banking app for BAWAG, a prominent financial institution in Austria. Upon first run, the app prompts the user to give “accessibility services” permission to the app. The accessibility services permission grants an app broad access to read the screen and mimic user interaction. Upon granting the permission, the app backgrounds itself. Any attempt by the user to uninstall the app is prevented by the app interrupting and closing the uninstall dialogues. Attempting to open the app again also fails—nothing happens.

            The Android app manifest file contains a list of permissions, activities, and services that an app provides. If an activity is not listed in the app manifest, the app can’t launch that activity. Using an Android static analysis tool like jadx or apktool we can take a look at the manifest XML. The malware app’s manifest asks for a wide range of permissions, including the ability to read and send SMS messages (a common way for malware to propagate), request installation and deletion of packages, read contacts, initiate calls, and request the aforementioned accessibility service. In addition, a number of classes are referenced which are not defined anywhere in our jadx-reversed code:

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • TechdirtNotorious Human Rights Abuser Is One Of NSO Group’s Main Investors

              It’s more difficult to choose your investors than your customers. Maybe this isn’t entirely NSO’s fault, but it certainly helped make it easier to sell powerful zero-click exploits to the governments most likely to abuse them. Here’s Kaye Wiggins and Mehul Srivastava for the Financial Times.

            • TechdirtTop Court In Massachusetts Says Cops Unconstitutionally Obtained Cell Tower Dumps In Homicide Case

              The courts in Massachusetts continue to set the standard for privacy protections. They have handed down several rulings that have expanded residents’ reasonable expectations beyond the baseline set by the Fourth Amendment and federal court rulings.

            • EFFThe NDO Fairness Act Is an Important Step Towards Transparency

              That’s why we recently sent a letter to the House Committee on the Judiciary in support of H.R. 7072, the Nondisclosure Order  (NDO) Fairness Act. This bill takes important steps toward bringing transparency and accountability to the federal government’s use of sweeping gag orders accompanying requests for user data, and we appreciate Chair Nadler and the other co-sponsors for addressing these important issues.The legislation does away with indefinite gag orders, limiting the duration of nondisclosure orders to a maximum of 30 days and allowing the government to seek extensions only in 30-day increments. The NDO Fairness Act also requires courts to explain in writing why notice of the collection would be substantially likely to result in harm before issuing nondisclosure orders and to narrowly tailor orders to avoid complete bans on speech wherever possible. This is a much more demanding standard than the current requirement that courts find there be “reason to believe” that such harm “may” occur. And the legislation puts in place important measures to ensure greater transparency around the government’s use of these secretive orders, both for targeted individuals and the larger public, including by requiring the government to notify targets of surveillance that their communications were intercepted and to publish an annual report that provides information about the use of surveillance under Section 2703. 

              These reforms are a welcome step forward in reforming the secrecy surrounding electronic surveillance and bringing the Stored Communications Act closer in line with constitutional guarantees. The bill would be even stronger if it provided a more accessible path for individuals to seek remedies for government violations of this law, and we look forward to working with the Committee to enact these and other reforms.

            • TechdirtAssholes Are Now Forging ‘Emergency Data Requests’ To Talk Tech Companies Out Of User Data

              Never underestimate the ability of the baddies to exploit the good nature inherent to most people. That’s the takeaway from this latest depressing news that malicious people are abusing law enforcement tools to harvest personal information to exploit. Here’s William Turton, delivering the most recent bit of bad news for everyone everywhere.

            • Site36German ANOM investigations: The mysterious EU third state

              The FBI had a crypto-messenger programmed that was fully intercepted. For legal reasons, the US authority received the intercepted communication via detours. Because of „hearsay court orders“, its use in German criminal proceedings is questionable.

            • PIAClearview AI Fined in Italy, Starts Scanning Dead Russian Soldiers in Ukraine

              The Italian authority imposed a fine of 20 million euros on Clearview AI, and ordered the company to delete all the data that it held relating to individuals in Italy. It also banned any further collection and processing of similar data. Since Clearview AI says that it does not have a place of business in Italy (or the EU), and does not have customers in Italy, it’s not clear whether the company will comply with the latest order.

            • CNETYour Digital Footprint: It’s Bigger Than You Realize

              A few years ago, Ken Crum started getting uncomfortable with how much of his life seemed to be online. The long-time computer programmer was particularly concerned by what companies appeared to know about him.

              The amount of personal information was mind-boggling to the 66-year-old Texan, who recently moved from Dallas to the small town of Weatherford. Data brokers were collecting his personal details. Social media was targeting ads at him. Then one day, after shopping at a local home improvement store, he got an email from the company asking how his visit was. While he can’t be absolutely certain, he’s pretty sure the company used location-tracking on his work phone to find him.

              He found it all unnerving.

            • The AtlanticTikTok Has a Problem

              That leads to problem No. 2: Once a TikTok video starts to get attention, there are no checks on its spread. This may seem true of all kinds of viral content on any social platform, but there are subtle differences. A viral tweet or Facebook post rarely gains its reach without assistance: Tweets may blow up only after they’ve been retweeted by accounts with big followings, or by tight-knit clusters of accounts (such as those belonging to MAGA Twitter or K-pop fans); Facebook posts may not catch fire until they’ve been shared to big pages or in super-active groups. On TikTok, you don’t need a middleman. You just need to perform well in front of the test audience you’re granted by default. As a result, whenever a potential villain starts to surface, a pile-on can form even faster than it might on other platforms.

            • TechdirtElon Musk Is Now Twitter’s Largest Shareholder; And That’s Probably Not A Good Thing

              Elon Musk appears to have a childlike understanding of free speech, especially with regards to how content moderation and free speech work together. But after running a silly poll a few weeks ago, many people assumed that the reason Musk was agitating to see if people felt that Twitter “supported” free speech, was that he might try to buy the company. It turns out, he was already in the process of trying to do so. On Monday it was announced that Musk has accumulated nearly 10% of Twitter’s shares, via some pocket change, making him the single largest shareholder in the company.

            • New York TimesElon Musk becomes Twitter’s largest shareholder.

              The purchase, equal to 9.2 percent of the company, appears to make Mr. Musk Twitter’s largest shareholder. His holding is slightly larger than Vanguard’s 8.8 percent at the end of last year, and it dwarfs the 2.3 percent stake of Jack Dorsey, Twitter’s former chief executive. The shares represent a fraction of Mr. Musk’s reported $270 billion-plus net worth.

            • CNNElon Musk buys 9.2% stake in Twitter, making him the largest shareholder

              Elon Musk recently purchased 9.2% of Twitter stock, according to a filing Monday, making him the largest individual shareholder in the company.

              News of the purchase sent shares of Twitter (TWTR) soaring 20% in premarket trading. Musk did not disclose what he paid for the shares, but his stake was worth $2.9 billion as of the close of trading Friday, and $3.5 billion after the spike early Monday.

              Musk’s filing did not disclose the purpose of the purchase or any plans for the company. But he has been a high-profile critic of Twitter policies in the past. Last month he said he was giving “serious thought” to creating a new social media platfor

            • Everything Smart Home5 Reasons Your Smart Home Should Be Local

              The final reason a local smart home is better is for security reasons. With cloud connected devices your data is being sent out to someone else’s servers which means that it’s up to them to protect and secure your data. Now these companies do have lots of resources at their disposal and you would like to think that they are doing everything possible to keep your data secure but, unfortunately, this also makes them more lucrative targets. Also, just being a big company doesn’t necessarily mean they are following good security practices – the lawsuit against Amazon’s Ring video products are a perfect example of that.

              Now, again, you may not care if someone can control your lights – although that could get pretty tedious quickly – but think about when it comes to security cameras; doorbells, baby monitors even. You probably don’t want anyone being able to view those whenever they want.

    • Defence/Aggression

      • Craig MurrayStriving to Make Sense of the Ukraine War

        No matter how hard we try to be dispassionate and logical, our thinking is affected by our own experiences, by the background knowledge we have and by the assumptions they generate. In discussing Ukraine – which arouses understandably high passions – I want to explain to you some of the experiences which affect my own thinking.

      • Meduza‘Suddenly, these outdated ideas are being used to justify mass murder’: Why Russia’s war against Ukraine is the logical continuation of Russian state ideology.

        For years, Russia’s official ideology has revolved around the myth that the country is in danger and its enemies are trying to destroy it. The war in Ukraine is the logical continuation of this myth. To learn how deep the historical foundations for this conflict go, Meduza turned to Andrei Zorin, a professor at the University of Oxford who studies the history of Russian state ideology and the cultural and political myths that support it.

      • Meduza‘Our psyche is blown’: Eyewitness accounts of life in Bucha under Russian occupation

        For the third day in a row, international media remains flooded with horrifying reports about hundreds of civilians killed in Bucha, Ukraine. Russian forces began occupying this and other satellite cities of Kyiv in early March, but have since retreated from the Kyiv region altogether. In their wake, independent journalists have recorded haunting scenes: in Bucha, the lifeless bodies of civilians were left lying in the streets — some of the victims had their hands tied behind their backs. Predictably, the Russian Defense Ministry claimed that the photos and videos emerging from Bucha were “staged” by the authorities in Kyiv. Meduza compiles eyewitness accounts of life in Bucha under Russian occupation, as told to journalists.

      • Meduza‘They gave their rations to the people in the basement, then threw down a grenade’: Bucha City Council Deputy Kateryna Ukraintseva describes life under Russian occupation.

        After the Russian army’s retreat from Ukraine’s Kyiv region, dozens of civilians were found dead in the city of Bucha, some of them with their arms tied behind their backs. As of April 4, 410 civilian bodies have been removed from the recently liberated towns. The Russian Defense Ministry said that the images and videos from Bucha were “staged by the Kyiv regime” — this is Russia’s standard reaction to both statements from the Ukrainian authorities and materials from independent journalists reporting on the war. To learn what life was like under Russian occupation, Meduza spoke to Bucha City Council Deputy and Ukrainian Territorial Defense Forces volunteer Kateryna Ukraintseva.

      • Meduza‘Russia’s culture died along with these Ukrainians’: The world reacts to evidence of Russian atrocities in Bucha

        On April 2, the Internet was flooded with photos showing dozens of murdered civilians on the streets of Bucha and other towns in Ukraine’s Kyiv region that were recently freed from Russian occupation. Since then, new eyewitness accounts and official reports of the crimes committed in the occupied territories have appeared; meanwhile, the Russian authorities have declared the images and accounts “fake” and a “provocation.” Meduza has compiled the world’s reactions to the news so far.

      • Counter PunchSave the Planet, Behead the Military Budget


        Peter Isaacson, writing in Fair Observer, seems to be saying . . . oh my God, democracy is a cliché, a big sham. I stand up, put my hand on my heart, pledge allegiance to the flag. This is America, land of the empowered voter. Then I read about our president’s latest budget proposal, which includes $813 billion for “national defense” — pushing the Pentagon budget’s already record-setting enormity further into outer space — and I feel myself collapse (yet again) into nothingness.

      • Counter PunchWhy Biden Can’t Woo the Middle East

        Washington’s troubled relations with its Middle Eastern allies have become particularly pronounced since Russia began its invasion of Ukraine. Though all the Middle Eastern countries that are American allies—Saudi-led Gulf states, Israel, Egypt and Turkey—condemned Russia at the UN Resolution in March for starting a war with Ukraine, only Israel has implemented sanctions, albeit minimally. The reluctance to impose sanctions by the United States’ allies in the Middle East reflects their intention to avoid antagonizing Russia, which is increasingly influential in the region, and also reflects their dissatisfaction with Washington and confirms the perception that its influence in the region is waning.

        U.S. relations with Saudi Arabia began to deteriorate notably in 2015. The Iran nuclear deal implemented by former President Barack Obama caused considerable alarm in Riyadh, while Saudi Arabia’s intervention in Yemen, which also began that year, received only lukewarm U.S. support. Obama’s successor, President Donald Trump, took a more pro-Saudi approach upon entering the White House in 2017, traveling to Saudi Arabia on his first foreign trip as president and increasing weapons salesto the country.

      • Counter PunchAfghan Evacuees Still Lack a Clear Path for Resettlement in the U.S., 7 Months After Taliban Takeover

        The United States said on March 24, 2022, that it would welcome 100,000 Ukrainian refugees.

        The Ukrainian refugee situation continues to overshadow another refugee crisis. That crisis stems from the U.S. military’s official withdrawal from Afghanistan in August 2021.

      • Counter PunchUkraine and the Global Economic War: Is This Barbarism or Civilization?

        The threat to the dollar hegemony is only one part of the fallout. The complex supply chains, built on the premise of a stable trading regime of the World Trade Organization principles, are also threatening to unravel. The United States is discovering that Russia is not simply a petrostate as they thought but that it also supplies many of the critical materials that the U.S. needs for several industries as well as its military. This is apart from the fact that Russia is also a major supplier of wheat and fertilizers.

        Seizing Russia’s funds means that the faith in the United States as the world’s banker and in the dollar as the global reserve currency is in question. Why should countries maintain any trade surplus and bank it abroad if that surplus can be seized at will through sanctions imposed by the West? The promise of a dollar as the world’s reserve currency was that all surpluses in dollars were safe. With the seizure of the Afghan central bank’s $9.5 billion, and allocating $7 billion out of it, the United States has shown that it considers the dollar reserves of another country, held by the United States’ central bank, as its money. It may be an economic asset in the books for a country to maintain its currency reserves with the U.S. central bank. But it is effectively a political liability, as the U.S. government can seize this asset at will. The United States has earlier shown its capability of imposing sanctions against countries such as Iraq, Libya and Venezuela and seizing their assets that resulted in far-reaching negative impacts for these countries. The seizure of Russia’s foreign exchange reserves by a handful of Western countries—ex-colonial and settler-colonial states—shows that the so-called rules-based order is now based on weaponizing the dollar and the West’s control over the global financial system.

      • Common DreamsBiden Demands War Crimes Trial for Putin, But Will US End Its Opposition to ICC?

        While U.S. President Joe Biden echoed human rights defenders on Monday by calling Russian President Vladimir Putin “a war criminal” in response to what Ukrainian officials described as a “deliberate massacre” in Bucha, the American leader’s remarks also highlighted a refusal by his government to acknowledge or face consequences for the United States’ crimes abroad.

        Recalling his remarks from mid-March, Biden told reporters outside the White House on Monday that “you may remember I got criticized for calling Putin a war criminal. Well, the truth of the matter—you saw what happened in Bucha… He is a war criminal.”

      • Common DreamsOpinion | Why the US Must Practice Restraint

        In Western military circles, it’s common to refer to the “balance of forces”—the lineup of tanks, planes, ships, missiles, and battle formations on the opposing sides of any conflict. If one has twice as many combat assets as its opponent and the leadership abilities on each side are approximately equal, it should win. Based on this reasoning, most Western analysts assumed that the Russian army—with a seemingly overwhelming advantage in numbers and equipment—would quickly overpower Ukrainian forces. Of course, things haven’t exactly turned out that way. The Ukrainian military has, in fact, fought the Russians to a near-standstill. The reasons for that will undoubtedly be debated among military theorists for years to come. When they do so, they might begin with Moscow’s surprising failure to pay attention to a different military equation—the “correlation of forces”—originally developed in the former Soviet Union.

      • Common Dreams‘Dark Day for Democracy’ in Hungary as Orbán Wins Dubious Reelection

        Democracy defenders on Monday warned of ominous consequences as right-wing Hungarian President Viktor Orbán was overwhelmingly elected to his fourth term in a contest progressive observers said was unfairly stacked against the opposition.

        “Hungary seems to have reached a point of no return.”

      • Democracy NowMass Graves in Kyiv Suburb of Bucha; Amnesty Int’l Documents Unlawful Killing of Civilians in Ukraine

        Ukrainian officials are accusing Russia of committing war crimes for killing civilians. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and EU leaders condemned images of dead civilians in the Kyiv suburb of Bucha, where corpses were found littering the streets after Russian troops withdrew from the area, some with their hands bound behind their backs. On Friday, Amnesty International also published a report that independently verified Russia has violated international law in using banned cluster munitions and other weapons that indiscriminately kill civilians. “What’s been going on during the entire more than a month now of conflict merits serious investigation and accountability for the perpetrators,” says Joanne Mariner, crisis response director at Amnesty International, who co-authored the report. “Given this relentless bombardment of civilian neighborhoods and districts, we’re calling for the establishment of safe humanitarian corridors to allow civilians to escape.”

      • The NationPutin’s Miscalculation Should Be a Lesson to the US

        In Western military circles, it’s common to refer to the “balance of forces”—the lineup of tanks, planes, ships, missiles, and battle formations on the opposing sides of any conflict. If one has twice as many combat assets as its opponent and the leadership abilities on each side are approximately equal, it should win. Based on this reasoning, most Western analysts assumed that the Russian army—with a seemingly overwhelming advantage in numbers and equipment—would quickly overpower Ukrainian forces. Of course, things haven’t exactly turned out that way. The Ukrainian military has, in fact, fought the Russians to a near-standstill. The reasons for that will undoubtedly be debated among military theorists for years to come. When they do so, they might begin with Moscow’s surprising failure to pay attention to a different military equation—the “correlation of forces”—originally developed in the former Soviet Union.

      • The Nation“Mothers’ March for Ukrainian Children”
      • ABCFamily of slain journalist testifies about ransom demands

        The Islamic State terrorists who kidnapped American journalist James Foley never made serious attempts to negotiate a ransom before brutally executing him, family members testified Monday.

        Foley’s brother and mother took the witness stand at U.S. District Court in Alexandria at the terror trial of El Shafee Elsheikh, a Briton accused of played a leading role in a hostage-taking scheme that resulted in the deaths of Foley and three other Americans — Steven Sotloff, Peter Kassig and Kayla Mueller.

    • Environment

      • Common DreamsCampaigners Say IPCC Report Reveals ‘Bleak and Brutal Truth’ About Climate Emergency

        A United Nations report on the climate emergency—released Monday after negotiations spilled into overtime—sparked a fresh wave of calls for bolder and scientifically informed action to rapidly and dramatically reduce planet-heating emissions for the sake of all life on Earth.

        “This monumental climate report is distressing but it is not surprising.”

      • Common DreamsOpinion | The Cost of Not Acting on Climate? US Govt Study Says $2 Trillion Per Year by 2100

        Journalist Timothy Gardner at Reuters has gotten an advance look at a White House Office of Management and Budget document that concludes that by the end of this century, when Olivia Rodrigo would be 100 if she has the long life we wish for her, the annual cost of the climate crisis we are causing will amount to $2 trillion a year in today’s dollars.

      • Common Dreams‘Climate Revolution’: Scientists Launch Global Civil Disobedience Campaign

        Scientists from around the world on Monday mobilized to demand a “Climate Revolution,” holding rallies and staging acts of civil disobedience with the goal of making the planetary emergency “impossible to ignore.”

        With a kick-off timed to coincide with Monday’s release of the latest report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), researchers across the globe this week will participate in the Scientist Rebellion, staging strikes and occupations at universities, research institutes, and scientific journals to demand that the community speak out forcefully against continued fossil fuel emissions to highlight “the urgency and injustice of the climate and ecological crisis.”

      • Common DreamsIPCC Report Release Delayed as Rich Nations Sought to Weaken Fossil Fuel Phaseout

        The publication of the third and final part of the United Nations’ latest comprehensive climate assessment, originally scheduled for early Monday morning, was postponed by several hours after a contentious weekend of negotiations in which wealthy governments attempted to weaken statements about green financing for low-income nations and fossil fuel-producing countries objected to unequivocal language about the need to quickly ditch coal, oil, and gas.

        The landmark report by Working Group III of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)—written by dozens of climate scientists from around the world who synthesized the past eight years of relevant research—is expected to call for a rapid global phaseout of fossil fuels to avoid the planetary emergency’s most dire consequences.

      • Counter PunchMovement Generation Works to Usher in a Sustainable Just Transition

        “At that time, most of my peers in urban organizing weren’t even discussing climate change,” says Nube. “Once we started digging into it, we realized our peers organizing in Miami might be underwater 50 years from now, and that climate change was a symptom of a much deeper set of interlocking crises rooted in industrial extractivism.”

        In 2006, Nube and his colleagues co-founded the Movement Generation Justice and Ecology Project to create an analytical foundation for organizers interested in the relationship between ecology and social justice, and as a hub for strategic organizing efforts through workshops, retreats and campaign development.

      • Counter PunchWhat Those Who Feed Us Deserve
      • Counter Punch‘Oh, That House? It’s in the Sea Now:” India’s Disappearing Coastline
      • Common DreamsOpinion | Big Oil’s Hypocrisy Laid Bare by Russia’s War on Ukraine

        CEOs of major oil and gas companies have been called to testify before at least three congressional committees about their record profits as Russia wages an unjust war in Ukraine and gas prices remain volatilely high, disproportionately affecting low-income and fixed-income families. The oil and gas industry has been in the spotlight for its role in the humanitarian catastrophe whose effects are rippling across the globe. It’s no wonder these companies are spinning up a PR campaign to promote their businesses as the answer to our problems, publicly withdrawing from Russia, and showing up at the White House to offer support to the Biden administration’s efforts to end the invasion and limit its economic fallout.

      • Common DreamsUN Chief: Those Expanding Fossil Fuels—Not Climate Activists—Are the ‘Truly Dangerous Radicals’

        Following the publication of a key United Nations climate report on Monday, U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres took aim at governments and corporations—whom he accused “a litany of broken climate promises”—while defending the activists fighting for a future free from fossil fuels.

        “The truly dangerous radicals are the countries that are increasing the production of fossil fuels. Investing in new fossil fuels infrastructure is moral and economic madness.”

      • Energy

        • DeSmogBiden’s Call to Increase LNG Export Capacity on Gulf Coast is Tantamount To Sarah Palin’s Call to ‘Drill Baby Drill’ According to Environmental Advocates

          Travis Dardar, an indigenous fisherman in Cameron, Louisiana, has a front-row view of the expansion of the liquified natural gas (LNG) industry’s export capacity on the Gulf Coast — and it isn’t pretty. “It disgusts me what man is doing to the planet,” Dardar told me as I photographed flares at the recently built Venture Global Calcasieu Pass LNG export facility from his boat out in the Calcasieu Ship Channel, which empties into the Gulf of Mexico.

          I met Travis and his wife Nicole Dardar on March 17, before attending an air quality permit hearing held by the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality (LDEQ) in Cameron for another proposed LNG export project by Commonwealth LNG, a Texas-based company.

        • WiredEurope’s Biggest Lithium Mine Is Caught in a Political Maelstrom

          Europe has big plans to phase out fossil-fuel cars. In July, the European Union proposed a ban on the sale of new petrol and diesel cars by 2035. The bloc wants to replace those cars with electric vehicles, built with locally produced raw materials like lithium. The top lithium producers are currently Australia, Chile, and China. But Europe has ambitions to produce more of the materials it needs for electric cars at home. These materials “are extremely expensive to ship and are transported across the world several times over,” says Emily Burlinghaus, a fellow at the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies in Germany. “So it’s much cheaper and much safer to have these operations close to battery manufacturing plants or auto manufacturing plants.”

          For Europeans it’s also a security issue. “We cannot allow [the EU] to replace [its] current reliance on fossil fuels with dependency on critical raw materials,” said Maroš Šefčovič, the commission vice president for inter-institutional relations, in 2020.

        • The NationThe Case Against Closing Nuclear Power Plants

          On a bright spring day in 1979, before thousands who were propelled to Washington, D.C., by the Three Mile Island reactor meltdown, I pronounced nuclear power’s rapid expansion disastrously unaffordable. My remarks drew on years of work chronicling reactors’ skyrocketing capital costs.

      • Wildlife/Nature

      • Overpopulation

        • New York TimesI’m a Scientist in California. Drought Is Worse Than We Thought.

          We are looking down the barrel of a loaded gun with our water resources in the West. Rather than investing in body armor, we’ve been hoping that the trigger won’t be pulled. The current water monitoring and modeling strategies aren’t sufficient to support the increasing number of people that need water. I’m worried about the next week, month, year, and about new problems that we’ll inevitably face as climate change continues and water becomes more unpredictable.

        • The NationCan Las Vegas Be Made Sustainable?

          Las Vegas is all about light. Despite its desert location and the sunsets that turn the surrounding mountains and red-rock canyons all colors of delicate pink, the lights for which Las Vegas is most renowned are electronic, the kind that blur the line between night and day and leave visitors to Las Vegas always feeling that they have, somehow, stepped outside of normal time. Huge television screens, some the size of 10-story buildings, illuminate both the insides of casinos and the edifices of their exterior. Inside, gambling palaces are filled with countless thousands of blinking slot machines, alongside malls and food courts and bars and theaters all flooded with a fluorescent glow that creates an endless afternoon.

    • Finance

      • Common DreamsOpinion | The Poor People’s Campaign Gears Up for Its National March in June

        On March 28, the Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival brought together a diverse coalition of participants in Madison, Wisconsin, to march for the rights of poor and low-wage workers across the United States. A parallel event took place in Raleigh, North Carolina; both were part of a buildup to a national march planned for June 18 in Washington, D.C.

      • Common Dreams‘Pick Up the Pen, Joe’: DC Protest Calls on Biden to Cancel Student Debt

        Hundreds of people converged in Washington, D.C. on Monday for a national day of action to demand that the Biden administration cancel all outstanding federal student loan debt via executive order.

        “All he needs to do is sign an executive order. What is Biden waiting for?”

      • FAIRCorporate Press Scapegoats Vulnerable Homeless for Rise in Subway Crime

        A homeless man allegedly pushed 40-year-old Michelle Go in front of an oncoming train at a New York City subway station on January 15, killing her. The high-profile attack received worldwide coverage, with widespread reporting emphasizing crimes committed by people without homes in New York and around the country.

      • Counter PunchWages Up by $1.2 Trillion Since Biden Takes Office, $9,400 per Household

        This is worth noting, because the news media have filled their pages and broadcasts with stories of workers who are suffering because of the rise in gas prices and inflation more generally. There are undoubtedly many workers who are seriously suffering, but this is always true. Since labor income is higher today than it was before the pandemic, we can reasonably infer that many more workers were having trouble making ends meet in 2019 than today. If we hear more stories of hardship now, it is because of the decision by the media to give us more stories of hardship, not because more stories exist in the world.

        For those who want a picture of how labor income growth since Biden took office compares with prior years, here’s the picture since 2010.

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • Counter PunchPutin is Being Written Off as an Ineffectual Monster, but a Russian Defeat is Far From Guaranteed

        I was struck at the time by Putin’s cold smile and athletic stride, both self-consciously geared to conveying an impression of business-like authority. I wondered what the man was really like, as did many Russians curious about his public persona. One joke in Moscow, adapted from a jibe often directed at Soviet leaders in the past, asked: “Will there ever be a Putin personality cult? No, because to have such a cult you must first have a personality.”

        This put-down probably underestimated Putin. And in any case, his control of the Russian media enabled him to pose as a competent “tough-guy” national leader. But for me he always remained an elusive figure, expert in the mechanics of gaining and keeping power in Russia while making a broad-brush appeal to Russian nationalism.

      • Counter PunchIs Biden Channeling Tom Paine on Taxes?
      • Counter PunchNot to Rewrite the History of the Dictatorship

        Very well. But first, in order not to rewrite history without contextualizing the time, one must not rewrite the days of the calendar. For in the coup propaganda, the first of April 1964 was always brought forward to the 31st of March. Trying to avoid the joke, the universal day of lies, they lied in anticipation. They said that everything was done on March 31. And the revolution was decreed.

        In doubt, so as not to fall into historical revisionism, look at the Brazilian newspapers of April 2nd, 1964:

      • TruthOutWatergate Prosecutor Calls 7-Hour Gap in Trump Phone Records “Suspicious”
      • TruthOutHow the World’s Not-So-Great Powers Are Miscalculating on Ukraine
      • TruthOutSanders Announces Budget Committee Hearing on Corporate Greed and Profiteering
      • TruthOutUS Charitable Donations Are Funding Displacement of Palestinians
      • TruthOutJanuary 6 Committee Says Criminal Referral on Trump to DOJ May Be Unnecessary
      • TruthOutBetsy DeVos and Her Family Are Flooding Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis With Cash
      • HungaryIf Fidesz won, why is the so-called “child protection” referendum invalid?

        The so-called child protection referendum held on Sunday, at the same time as the parliamentary elections has been declared invalid. From the appoximately 3.5 million valid answers which were submitted, 3.2 million people voted “no”. But if so many people gave the answer the government has been pushing, and if the Fidesz-KDNP coalition won yet another two-thirds majority, then how is it possible that they were not able to get enough valid votes that had four “no” answers to the questions asked. The answer is simpler than one might think.

      • HungaryViktor Orbán’s fourth two-thirds majority, a disaster for the opposition coalition – key election results

        Now that the votes are almost all counted, we present the key results of the 2022 parliamentary elections. The bottom line: Viktor Orbán and Fidesz-KDNP won by two-thirds for the fourth time, the opposition coalition did much worse than forecasted in all preliminary polls – winning almost exclusively in Budapest’s constituencies. Finally, Our Homeland Movement made it into parliament. Translation by Dominic Spadacene

      • HungaryPresident of Mi Hazánk: The miracle that no one believed in has happened

        Well above the five percent threshold, with a list vote share of 6.3 percent and over 310,000 list votes, Mi Hazánk (Our Country) has entered parliament as the third parliamentary force, if we consider the opposition coalition as a bloc. After the 2018 elections, the party of the more radical MPs who broke away from the Jobbik party, can send a total of 7 MPs to Parliament. Translation: Dominic Spadacene

      • NBCElon Musk buys 9 percent stake in Twitter

        The stock-buying revelation comes as Musk emerges as one of the loudest and most prominent critics of Twitter’s moderation efforts, which in recent years have cracked down on everything from harassment and death threats to misinformation and conspiracy theories.

      • The HillState Department formally launches new cyber bureau

        The State Department launched its new Bureau of Cyberspace and Digital Policy on Monday in what it says is a modernization of the agency aimed at emerging technology issues in diplomacy.

        A statement issued by the department said the bureau will address “the national security challenges, economic opportunities, and implications for U.S. values associated with cyberspace, digital technologies, and digital policy.”

        It will consist of three policy units, including international cyberspace security, international information and communications policy, and digital freedom.

      • Helsinki TimesDraft of Finland’s digital compass sent out for comments

        Finland’s digital compass is based on the EU’s Digital Compass, which was presented in spring 2021. Finland’s digital compass sets the level for Finland’s national ambition with respect to the objectives presented by the EU and sets national objectives that go beyond those of the EU.

        In line with the EU Digital Compass, Finland’s digital compass revolves around four cardinal points: skills, digital infrastructure, the digital transformation of businesses, and digital of public services. The compass includes prioritised national objectives for each of these points up to 2030. The compass also defines the measures required to reach these objectives as well as progress indicators that will be updated regularly.

      • [Old] European CommissionEurope’s Digital Decade: digital targets for 2030

        The Commission will provide an assessment of the implementation of the digital principles in the annual State of the Digital Decade report. The Commission will also conduct an annual Eurobarometer survey to monitor the follow-up measures in the Member States. The Eurobarometer will collect qualitative data, based on citizens’ perception of how the digital principles are put into practice in various Member States. The European Parliament and the Council of the European Union will discuss the proposal before adoption.

    • Misinformation/Disinformation

      • New York TimesThe Latest Covid Misinformation Star Says He Invented the Vaccines

        In spreading these exaggerations and unfounded claims, Dr. Malone joins medical professionals and scientists, like Dr. Joseph Mercola and Dr. Judy Mikovits, whose profiles have grown during the pandemic as they spread misinformation about mask-wearing and convoluted conspiracy theories about virus experts like Dr. Anthony Fauci

      • Ofcom: One in three internet users cannot spot false accounts or content

        Some 30% of UK adults who use the internet – 14.5 million – are unsure about or do not even consider the truthfulness of the information they see online, the regulator’s annual survey found.

        A further 6%, or about one in every 20 internet users, believe everything they see online.

        Both adults and children overestimate their ability to spot misinformation, Ofcom found.

      • VoxWhat Chinese media is saying about Russia’s Ukraine war

        The close of the 2022 Beijing Olympics, on February 20, was a key moment in trying to decipher Russia’s Ukraine invasion plans. Russian President Vladimir Putin would wait until after the Games, the theory went, so as not to distract from the Olympics and to avoid jeopardizing any support Moscow would need from Beijing.

        Putin did wait, finally launching an invasion on February 24. But China has not gone all-in on Putin’s Ukraine war, despite Chinese President Xi Jinping and Putin declaring there were “no limits” to their friendship.

        Instead, the Chinese government has tried to toe a careful line. It has not condemned Russia’s invasion. But though China has criticized Western sanctions on Russia, it has not really moved to help Russia evade them, and it looks like it’s trying to avoid running afoul of the penalties. At the same time, what it says and does outwardly may be a lot different from what’s happening behind the scenes.

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • TruthOutMore Book Bans Sought in 2021 Than Any Other Point in Past 20 Years, Group Says
      • Censorship in Russia and its impact on the free press and social media
      • CNX SoftwareHow to get your domain suspended in five easy steps! – CNX Software

        Regular readers may have noticed CNX Software was inaccessible for several days, and the reason was that my domain was suspended. I’m a bit late for April Fools’ day, but I’ll show how you can get your domain suspended too in five easy steps! I’ll also provide some background to what happened, and several errors of judgment made along the way

        What happened?

        On March 28, as I woke up I noticed I could not access the website and I had also received several emails and mentions on social networks that the website was down. I first tried to restart the LEMP stack of the server nginx, mysql, php, but it did not help. I quickly figured out there was a problem with DNS, so I went to the Cloudflare dashboard which is where I manage the DNS records, but I did not see any problems there. Eventually, I saw the domain name servers were changed to: ns1.suspended.com and ns2.suspended.com, and I could not change anything. So my domain was suspended. CloudFlare is not managing the domain registration, I only use it for the DNS records, and they were not involved in this case at all.

        Note that I did not receive any email or phone call from the reseller where I purchased the domain in 2010. I first tried chat support but was told to open a ticket, which was handled by the “billing” department. I open the ticket on March 28th, 2022 (21:25) (some US timezone), and received an answer on March 29th, 2022 (05:54) saying the domain was suspended because of phishing. I know I’m not running some phishing scam, so either the server was hacked, or somebody had made a fake report to take my domain down. I was not given the exact reason yet, but a case was opened and was told I would receive an email soon (to an email from my suspended domain).

        I replied I was probably the victim of fraud, and so I had to refresh the ticket from time to time, and on Tuesday, March 29th, 2022 (23:38), or 26 hours after opening the ticket I was given a screenshot showing “definitive proof of my abusing ways” (I make that up).

    • Freedom of Information/Freedom of the Press

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • Common DreamsJackson’s SCOTUS Nomination Clears Deadlocked Senate Judiciary Committee

        Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson’s historic nomination to the United States Supreme Court cleared a minor hurdle Monday after the U.S. Senate overcame a deadlocked Judiciary Committee via a procedural vote in the upper chamber, where her confirmation is all but guaranteed.

        “I dream of a day where Black women don’t have to be overqualified, jump through hoops, and face misogynoir just to get to the jobs they already deserve.”

      • TechdirtNew Jersey Town Sues 82-Year-Old Woman For Exercising Her Rights

        It’s your right to request records from public agencies. That fact cannot be disputed. The Freedom of Information Act guarantees it in regards to federal agencies and every state has their own laws that guarantee access to public records.

      • TechdirtBoulder Councilwoman Shared Video Claiming That 5G Is An ‘Extinction Level Event’

        Editor’s Note: After publication, we were alerted the that key story about the councilwoman, was actually from a few years ago, not recently. We regret the mistake and will make efforts to avoid such mistakes in the future. We’re leaving the original article below.

      • EFFPodcast Episode: Your Tax Dollars At Work
      • Counter PunchStatement of Solidarity & Support for Walden Bello Amidst Narco-Tagging incident

        In a recent statement released by Hugpong ng Pagbabago (HNP or Alliance for Change), the regional party founded by Sara Duterte, daughter of Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte, activist-scholar Professor Walden Bello was unfoundedly and maliciously labeled as a “narco-politician.”

        Prof. Bello is currently running for Vice President under Laban ng Masa (Fight of the Masses), a left-wing electoral coalition of democratic socialist and progressive groups, against Sara Duterte and several other candidates for the May 2022 Philippine National Elections. Last March 20, 2022, in a televised debate, Prof. Bello called out the issue of illicit drug trade in Davao City, dubbing it the “Drug Center ” of Southern Philippines. Prof. Bello questioned why the former aide of Sara Duterte (Davao City’s incumbent Mayor) was exonerated and freed despite clear involvement in a recent drug bust in Davao. Prof. Bello also pointed out that Sara Duterte’s refusal to attend the said debate displayed a glaring lack of public accountability in confronting the said issue, against the backdrop of thousands killed in the Duterte administration’s deadly “war on drugs”.

      • Pro PublicaTexas’ Border Operation Is Meant to Deter Cartels and Smugglers. More Often, It Imprisons Lone Men for Trespassing.

        For the past year, thousands of Texas National Guard members and state troopers have been sweeping through brush along the Rio Grande and cruising border-town roadways. Their eyes scan the horizon for the cartel operatives and smugglers whom Gov. Greg Abbott vowed to hold at bay when he launched his multibillion-dollar campaign to secure the border.

        But more often, the troopers arrest men like Bartolo, a Mexican farmworker who came to the United States looking for work, according to his lawyers. They’ve also slapped cuffs on asylum-seekers like Gastón, a human rights attorney who said he fled Venezuela after being targeted by the Maduro regime for defending political opponents.

      • The NationBlack Like Me? Bridgerton and the Fantasy of a Non-Racist Past

        When I first moved to the US from London, I asked an American journalist what kind of reception I might expect as a Black Briton. “Well, when they hear an English accent, Americans usually add about 20 points to your IQ,” he said. “But when they see a Black face, they usually don’t.” Recalling that the authors of the book The Bell Curve had claimed that Black people have an IQ 15 points lower than whites, I figured that, at the very least, I would still come out at least five points ahead.1

      • The NationWhose Revolution?

        To the surprise and consternation of scholars, history has recently emerged as a battlefield in the ongoing culture wars. Generally, historians welcome public debate about the past. But new state laws banning from classrooms any discussion of the history of racism have been accompanied by so much demagoguery and misinformation on the part of legislators, school board officials, and agitated parents that one is tempted to believe it would be more edifying to ignore history altogether for the time being.

      • The Nation“F*ck Leftist Westsplaining!”

        Berlin—This was once the fault line between East and West in Europe. Almost 35 years after the momentous change brought about by the fall of the Wall, Germany still feels tied to two regions, two histories. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is viewed and spoken about in a very different way here than it is in the United States.

      • Common DreamsAmazon Union Slams Any Attempt to ‘Delay Our Hard-Won Right to Bargain Collectively’

        In the wake of its historic victory in the election to unionize Amazon’s JFK8 warehouse in Staten Island, the Amazon Labor Union demanded over the weekend that the company begin collective bargaining negotiations in early May and immediately halt any changes to employment policies in the meantime.

        “As you are aware, the Amazon Labor Union has decisively won the union election,” Christian Smalls, the president of ALU, wrote in a letter to company management. “We are available to meet anytime on May 2, 3, 4, or 5 of 2022 for collective bargaining negotiations. Please provide your available dates and times before close of business on April 8, 2022.”

      • Common DreamsOpinion | Amazon Workers’ Historic Win and Corporate America’s Ongoing Greed
      • Common Dreams‘This Seems Totally Illegal’: Amazon May Ban Union Terms in Messaging App

        On the heels of a major organizing win for Amazon workers in New York City last week, The Intercept revealed Monday that the e-commerce giant is considering a ban on various union-related terms for a planned internal messaging application.

        “In November 2021, Amazon convened a high-level meeting in which top executives discussed plans to create an internal social media program that would let employees recognize co-workers’ performance with posts called ‘Shout-Outs,’” according to journalist Ken Klipperstein.

      • The HillAmazon eyeing plan to ban words such as ‘union,’ ‘restrooms’ and ‘slave labor’ from internal chat app: report

        The “auto bad word monitor” reportedly blacklists profanities and inappropriate terms but also targets terms related to organized labor including “union,” “grievance,” “pay raise,” “compensation” and more.

      • Democracy Now“We Just Unionized Amazon”: How Two Best Friends Beat the Retail Giant’s Union-Busting Campaign

        We speak with the two best friends who led a drive to organize workers at Amazon’s warehouse in Staten Island, New York, and made history Friday after a majority voted to form the first Amazon union in the U.S. We speak with Christian Smalls, interim president of the new union and former Amazon supervisor, about how he led the effort after Amazon fired him at the height of the pandemic for demanding better worker protections. “I think we proved that it’s possible, no matter what industry you work in, what corporation you work for,” says Smalls. “We just unionized Amazon. If we can do that, we can unionize anywhere.” We also speak with Derrick Palmer, who works at the Amazon JFK8 warehouse in Staten Island and is the vice president of the Amazon Labor Union, about intimidation tactics the company used. Reporter Josefa Velásquez covered the union drive for The City and discusses what the victory means for the broader labor movement.

      • The VergeAmazon union workers won in New York — can they win across the country?

        The Amazon Labor Union (ALU) scored a historic victory on April 1st when it became the first-ever union to successfully organize Amazon employees. Christian Smalls, a fired worker motivated by what he viewed as poor treatment, rallied his co-workers through the process and, in January 2022, got just enough votes to qualify for a formal election. On Friday, the workers of Amazon’s JFK8 warehouse voted to unionize, 2,654 to 2,131.

        It was a hard-won victory, coming after years of work, and labor activists are already hoping to apply the same tactics to the hundreds of thousands of Amazon warehouse workers across the rest of the country. After the RWDSU’s stumble in the Bessemer election last year, the newly formed Amazon Labor Union is pointing to a different path forward — and forcing Amazon to take a hard second look at working conditions in many of its fulfillment centers.

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

      • Terry Davis Was Right

        In 2019, a pseudonymous hacker called Solderpunk launched the Gemini network, a much simpler anti-commercial alternative to the web. Gemini has less than 1% of the complexity of the web, but can still do the stuff that matters: delivering simple hypertext documents. Further, it is designed deliberately to never be able to do the things enlightened users generally don’t want, like tracking or complex scripting on what should just be documents. The web itself has become so complex that there may never be another web browser written from scratch, but Gemini was designed to be simple enough that any reasonably competent programmer could write their own Gemini browser in a weekend, so there are already dozens.
        Gemini has exploded into a thriving scene of blogs and social media, proving that it is possible for any reasonably competent tech-prophet to overcome the network effects of the metaverse borg with their own niche alternative. It further demonstrates an exemplary case of the higher intentions of the software architect attempting to structurally prevent later commercial adulteration.

    • Monopolies

      • EFFDay of Action for Antitrust: Our Rights Are Tied to Having Choices

        We live in a world that increasingly requires us to be online. The promise of all this technology was that barriers would be lowered, allowing more people to exercise their rights—especially rights related to speech. For those who work in securing rights for others, activists and journalists, for example, this has been an invaluable change.

      • Common DreamsAntitrust Day of Action Takes Aim at Power of Tech Giants

        More than 100 advocacy groups were joined by some of Silicon Valley’s smaller tech companies Monday as they launched Antitrust Day, a day of action aimed at pressuring federal lawmakers to pass legislation that would rein in tech giants which advocates say “pose an existential threat to democracy” as they stifle competition and disempower consumers.

        Groups including Fight for the Future, Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), and Demand Progress are joining with Yelp, Patreon, DuckDuckGo, and other internet companies to push for the passage of two bills that would “increase competition, giving tech users more control over their digital lives, and reduce the monopoly power of Big Tech giants, which has been abused as a choke point for censorship and human rights violations,” according to organizers.

      • Copyrights

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