11.13.22

Gemini version available ♊︎

Links 13/11/2022: Ubuntu 23.04 Release Date and Mozilla Firefox 107

Posted in News Roundup at 3:50 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • VideoSlackware Window Manager Tweaks – Dbus and Polkit – Invidious

        Dbus and Polkit are integral components in the modem Linux desktop and although they are not technically required, if you run without either the chances are you will miss out on some of the features that just make our life easier. This is a quick kitchen video to show you how I manage both on Slackware. I hope you enjoy the video :-) If you enjoy my channel and/or find it useful, you can support me in a number of ways.

    • Applications

      • Linux Handbooktop vs htop: What’s the Difference?

        top and htop are two of the most popular command line utilities for system monitoring in Linux.

        They have similar names and similar objectives.

        So, what’s the difference between the two?

      • LinuxiacPodman Desktop: A GUI That Makes Container Management Easy

        Podman Desktop is a new cross-platform desktop integrated app with a unified UI that significantly simplifies working with Podman containers.

        Containers have become a sacred term in the IT industry in recent years. You probably don’t realize it, but under the hood, containers power a large chunk of Internet services today.

        Since Docker succeeded in establishing itself as the industry standard for service containerization, Red Hat has collaborated with the Open Source community to develop an alternative that addresses Docker’s drawbacks. The result of this collaboration is Podman.

        In short, Podman (Pod Manager) is an open-source daemonless container engine, an alternative to Docker, for developing, managing, and running OCI containers on Linux systems.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • Make Use OfHow to Create a Custom Ubuntu ISO With Cubic

        Cubic, or Custom Ubuntu ISO Creator, lets you generate a personalized version of the Ubuntu or Linux Mint ISO that suits your needs.

        One of the best things about Linux is that it lets you customize your system however you want to. Unlike users of other operating systems, you’re not limited to a particular corporate-mandated desktop environment, file manager, or office suite.

        Typically, you make changes to your distro after installing it to your hardware, but with Cubic, you can create a custom ISO that is perfect for your needs.

      • KifarunixHow To Create An Excellent Business Marketing Plan – kifarunix.com

        Marketing is all about creating value for a company through the creation and distribution of products or services.

      • Linux NightlyHow to Change Keyboard Layout on Ubuntu 22.04 – Linux Nightly

        In this tutorial, you will learn how to change the keyboard layout on Ubuntu 22.04 from GUI and command line. This is handy for users that wish to type in multiple languages.

      • DebugPointConnect to Ubuntu from Windows [Beginner’s Guide]

        This beginner’s guide helps you remotely connect to Ubuntu from Windows. We show you the easy steps with an example.

        If you work in a networked environment at your work or set up a small network at home (wired or wireless), you are often required to remotely connect to your Ubuntu machine (or any Linux machine).

        Although I have created this guide in Ubuntu 20.04 and Windows 10, the following steps ideally should work for any Linux distribution which supports Xrdp for remote connection. We have tested it in Ubuntu 22.04 and Windows 11 as well.

        In theory, there are many ways of connecting to any system over the network (internet or intranet). You can use any RDP client, such as Remmina (which is an excellent client), to connect via VNC and RDP protocol. Moreover, you can even connect via ssh with X forwarding as well. You can also check out the list of RDP clients if you want something specific.

      • DebugPointHow to Create WiFi Hotspot in Ubuntu

        This quick guide explains how to create a WiFi Hotspot in Ubuntu (all supported versions).

        Internet connection sharing is not new. It was available as an operating system feature for some time. In Windows 10 or 11, creating a Hotspot with just a click of a button in Settings is straightforward.

        In Linux Systems, particularly in Ubuntu-based systems, it was a bit tricky from the beginning. However, in recent Ubuntu 22.04 LTS – it is very straightforward, and you can quickly set up your WiFi hotspot from a desktop/laptop.

    • Games

  • Distributions and Operating Systems

    • Bryan LundukeHaiku Week begins at The Lunduke Journal – by Bryan Lunduke

      The BeOS was lightning fast and capable of effectively using the power of multiple CPUs (through something dubbed “pervasive multi-threading”) and, because of that, was astoundingly responsive and good at multimedia.

      In fact, at one point, BeOS was considered to be the replacement for Apple’s MacOS 8/9 line (which eventually went to OpenStep instead, resulting in MacOS X).

      Despite this amazing operating system… Be Inc. eventually failed and was sold off for scrap to Palm.

      Shortly thereafter, the OpenBeOS project was started. The goal was to support the existing BeOS users… while developing replacement, open source components for BeOS itself. Eventually resulting in an entirely new — but BeOS compatible — system.

  • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

    • Web Browsers/Web Servers

      • Mozilla

        • Ubuntu HandbookMozilla Firefox 107 Available to Install via Ubuntu PPA | UbuntuHandbook

          A new monthly release of Firefox web browser to be released soon! Users of Mozilla team PPA should already received the updates.

          Though it’s not officially announced at the moment of writing, user can however check what’s new in the release via the Github Releases page.

    • SaaS/Back End/Databases

      • Nicholas Tietz-SokolskyPaper review: C-store | nicholas@web

        It’s that time again: I read another paper, and here’s what I took away from it! This week I read “C-store: a column-oriented DBMS” from chapter 4 of the Red Book. This one I picked since I thought it would be helpful for the chess database I’m working on, and it does seem applicable!

        This paper was pretty significant for making a strong case for the utility of columnar databases in read-heavy situations. It demonstrated an architecture for a column database which not only beats row-based databases of the time (in their workload) but also beat the proprietary column databases of the time as well.

        [...]

        Next week’s paper will be the DynamoDB paper, which I’m excited to read! Later!

    • Content Management Systems (CMS)

      • Dan LangilleOdd look to the website – Dan Langille’s Other Diary

        I’ve been trying to update the website to PHP 8.1, but the WordPress Theme I’ve been using is from 2016 and has not been updated.

      • Bozhidar BatsovAn Unexpected Blogging Record

        Today I’ve noticed that I’ve written 36 articles to date here, which beats my annual record of 34 articles from 2011. I definitely didn’t see this coming, especially given how tough the year has been on me on multiple levels.

        A few years ago (think) was stagnant (I wrote 0 articles in both 2016 and 2017) and when I launched Meta Redux in 2018 I thought this was probably the end of my original blog. It’s funny that 4 years later I do most of my writing here again, and I even managed to reach the heights of my activity from the days when I was younger and had both more energy and more time to spare.1 Let’s hope I’ll keep this positive momentum going for a while, as there are definitely many topics that I’d like to explore here.

    • Programming/Development

      • Terence EdenIs Open Graph Protocol dead?

        Meta – like many other tech titans – has institutional Shiny Object Syndrome. It goes something like this:

        Launch a product to great fanfare
        Spend a few years hyping it as ✨the future✨
        Stop answering emails and pull requests
        If you’re lucky, announce that the product is abandoned but, more likely, just forget about it.

        Open Graph Protocol (OGP) is one of those products. The value-proposition is simple.

      • Frederico BittencourtA case for Go code generation: testify

        If you’ve been using Go for a while, you’re probably familiar with the testing library stretchr/testify. It makes it easy to write tests and provides several assertion functions, such as Equal, Contains, Greater, and many more. Assertion functions behaves differently depending on the scope. For example, when called from the assert or require package. The former logs the error and continue, while the latter stops the test immediately.

        [...]

        I think the biggest trade-off here is: complexity shifted from the testify package to the client test code. Writing tests using testify is extremely simple. I’ve rarely opened their documentation after the first few times I wrote tests. Which is a unique experience compared with other test libraries. For example with JavaScript’s chai, where often I forgot the order and idiomatic ways I should write assertions.

        This is a great trait of testify. Good libraries are the ones you don’t have to think too much about them, and they just work.

        The code generation path leaves a burden for the library developer to maintain, but it might simplify the package API, which makes adoption faster. I think testify developers probably made the right call here in making this simpler for the user, even if it risks complicating the maintainability of their tool.

        After all, it’s better to have all complexity in a single place than a little complexity everywhere.

      • Jim Nielsennpm Dependency Queries and the Cross-Pollination of Ideas

        I found out about npm dependency queries by reading Pawel’s post on the subject (and following links to the RFC). It’s an intriguing idea: discover information about your project and its dependencies by querying for it with selectors informed by CSS!

      • EarthlyHow To Simplify Kubernetes Configuration Using Custom Resources And Controllers

        Kubernetes is a powerful container orchestration tool that can help you manage your microservices. Often when you have a microservice setup, each microservice requires it’s own set of configuration in the Kubernetes cluster that makes it run. The problem is, maintaining closely similar configurations for your microservices, particularly those that use similar tech stacks, can lead to repetitive code that becomes a cumbersome to maintain.

        This can be made simpler if all your microservices are managed by a single configuration template. Changes made to this configuration template are easily applied to all the microservices using it. In addition to the maintenance ease, a configuration template can also make it easier to collaborate with other developers because all your microservice configurations and setup are in one place.

      • EarthlyGolang Workspaces

        In a previous article, we wrote about how you should be using replace in go.mod files for modules local to the repository, like in a large monorepo This works because we can safely make assumptions about the organization of the checked-out directory structure. But what to do when you are working on dependant modules spread across multiple repos?

        For example, say you are working on a project that uses several Golang modules. Each will have their own go.mod and their own dependencies. Furthermore, each may have their own repository. Within your project you have a library, maybe a parser for example, that is used in several other modules in your project. You want to do some work on the parser, and then you want to also start using these updates in other modules in your project.

        Before Go version 1.18, you’d need to pull the repos locally and then edit each module’s go.mod with a replace to be able to use and test the local changes. That might look something like this:

      • uni TorontoGo’s sync.Pool has (undocumented) ‘thread’ locality

        First, let’s say the obvious thing: this sync.Pool behavior is undocumented and so may change at any time, if the Go developers feel that it should be done a different way or just if they get annoyed at people building code around it. The second thing to say is that this doesn’t mean what you want and it’s not necessarily predictable, although it’s more predictable than I initially thought.

        Go (currently) uses an M:N work stealing scheduler to multiplex goroutines on to OS threads. The scheduler has three important sorts of entities: a G is a goroutine, an M is an OS thread (a ‘machine’), and a P is a ‘processor’, which at its core is a limited resource that must be claimed by an M in order to run user-level Go code. What sync.Pool is (currently) doing in its local pools is ‘P-local pools’ (as far as I can tell).

      • Mark DominusAddenda to recent articles 202210

        I haven’t done one of these in a while. And there have been addenda. I thought hey, what if I ask Git to give me a list of commits from October that contain the word ‘Addendum’. And what do you know, that worked pretty well. So maybe addenda summaries will become a regular thing again, if I don’t forget by next month.

      • Francesco MazzoliThe essence of Reed-Solomon coding

        Let’s say we want to store some data on multiple drives, so that we can recover from drive failures.

        One obvious (and valid!) first attempt is to just store everything multiple times – usually called “mirroring”. The most common form of mirroring is to store things twice: if one drive fails, the data is still in the other.1

        Reed-Solmon coding gives us much more flexibility, allowing us to store our data over n = k + t drives, so that any t drives can fail while still not losing data.

      • Saturn Elephant – The lazy numbers in R

        My new package lazyNumbers is a port of the lazy numbers implemented in the C++ library CGAL. The lazy numbers represent the real numbers and arithmetic on these numbers is exact.

      • The giant French Olympic-size swimming pool – r.iresmi.net

        What if all private swimming pools could be merged into one 25 m width pool? OSM is not just a map, it’s a database, so ask OSM… I know that not all swimming pools are present in OSM, but it’s just an exercise and it can give us an order of magnitude or at least a minimum.

      • Use data from Wikipedia – r.iresmi.net

        Scrape and geolocate data from Wikipedia. We will map the active space launch sites.

      • Scaling Shiny Apps for Python and R: Sticky Sessions on Heroku

        Scaling Shiny apps requires load balancing with session affinity which is not a trivial matter. Read on to see how to do that on Heroku.

        Shiny for R and Python can be deployed in conventional ways, using RStudio Connect, Shiny Server Open Source, and Shinyapps.io. These hosting solutions are designed with scaling options included and are the officially recommend hosting options for Shiny apps.

      • How to use nflfastR with Google BigQuery? – rstats-tips.net

        Lately I wanted to play around with nflfastR. That’s a great package giving you access to NFL’s play-by-play data since 1999. It let’s you download all the data and store it in several different databases.

      • Use data from data.gouv.fr

        Using GIS data directly from data.gouv.fr : railways network of France.

      • A web application for forecasting in Python, R, Ruby, C#, JavaScript, PHP, Go, Rust, Java, MATLAB, etc.

        In this post, I’ll describe an (work-in-progress) Application Programming Interface (API) for time series forecasting. An API is a system that can receive requests from your computer, to carry out given tasks on given resources, and return a response. This type of system is programming-language-agnostic. That means: it can be used with Python, JavaScript, PHP, R, Go, C#, Ruby, Rust, Java, MATLAB, Julia, and any other programming language speaking http. And therefore, it could be relatively easily integrated into existing workflows for uncertainty forecasting. I’ve used the following tools for building it:

      • RlangHow do I count thee? Let me count the ways?
      • Extract POIs from a Suunto watch – r.iresmi.net

        The Suunto watches (Spartan, Suunto 9,…) can record waypoints (or POIs) but although they can be visualized in the Suunto app (or on the watch), they cannot be exported to be used with other tools. It used to be possible to access them from the Movescount website but it was discontinued a few months ago.

      • Perl / Raku

        • PerlPerl performance evolution over the last decade | Dimitrios Kechagias [blogs.perl.org]

          I was reading recently about some significant Python 3.11 performance improvements, and I was wondering whether Perl 5 still gets significant performance improvements on each version – even though it might be more mature, thus more optimized in the first place.

          I thought I’d compare the final releases of alternating versions starting with 5.12.5 released 10 years ago, using a benchmark I made for a cloud vm comparison. As is the case with any benchmark, it might not be representative of your own workloads – it benchmarks things that are relevant to me and also some things that I would avoid, but are used by many modules and are notoriously slow (mainly DateTime and Moose). However, it is more representative of “real-life”, with results that are not lost in noise, than say, PerlBench (which has a different purpose of course).

        • DEV CommunityPushing the limits – DEV Community 👩‍💻👨‍💻

          This is the second part of the “A gaze of iterators!” series.

      • Rust

        • WiredThe Rise of Rust, the ‘Viral’ Secure Programming Language That’s Taking Over Tech | WIRED

          WHETHER YOU RUN IT for a massive organization or simply own a smartphone, you’re intimately familiar with the unending stream of software updates that constantly need to be installed because of bugs and security vulnerabilities. People make mistakes, so code is inevitably going to contain mistakes—you get it. But a growing movement to write software in a language called Rust is gaining momentum because the code is goof-proof in an important way. By design, developers can’t accidentally create the most common types of exploitable security vulnerabilities when they’re coding in Rust, a distinction that could make a huge difference in the daily patch parade and ultimately the world’s baseline cybersecurity.

    • Standards/Consortia

      • Manuel MatuzovicWorkshop: Deep Dive on Accessibility Testing – Manuel Matuzović

        I’ve teamed up with my friends at Smashing Magazine 😻 to share with you everything I know about web accessibility testing! In this smashing workshop we’ll talk about automatic and manual testing, screen reader basics, Single Page Applications, Dev Tools, and more.

      • Xe’s BlogXess 2: CSS variable edition

        As a hacker with too many side projects, I like to have a certain look to my websites that makes it instantly identifiable. I have a very brutalist approach to web design that makes it very easy to get things off the ground and get hacking.

        One of my longer-standing projects is a CSS framework called Xess. Xess is my go-to CSS file when I just need to throw some words on a page.

      • Austin Gil6 Steps to Improve HTML Images For Users & Developers

        On a large screen, this image would be just fine, but for users with small screen devices, a 1200px wide image means they’ll have to to download a larger image than they need. That could take longer to download and it could cost them money on their data plan.

  • Leftovers

    • Matt RickardGenerational Advantages

      My generation has unfair advantages over previous ones. I grew up in a world that went through rapid digitization—the first to have access to unlimited (and free) information.

      [...]

      Of course, it would be short-sighted and pessimistic to think future generations won’t have their own unfair advantages. Maybe the children who grew up looking at iPads and innately using touchscreen gestures will have some advantages with new technology.

    • MWL
      Eight years ago today, my first novel

      Anyway, eight years ago today my first novel came out. Immortal Clay is a critical success and a financial sinkhole. Seems that some parts of it were a bit much for people.

    • Matt RickardInformation Barbell

      Hyper-recent information is usually immediately relevant — figuring out a new trend, understanding a new development, or arbitraging the information asymmetry in another way. So who better to learn from than the people actually doing the thing?

    • Science

      • Quanta Magazine‘Monumental’ Math Proof Solves Triple Bubble Problem and More

        The decades-old Sullivan’s conjecture, about the best way to minimize the surface area of a bubble cluster, was thought to be out of reach for three bubbles and up — until a new breakthrough result.

      • Sabine HossenfelderSabine Hossenfelder: Backreaction: Quantum Winter Is Coming

        Quantum technology current attracts a lot of attention and money, which might explain why they’re missing on my end. But it’s not just governments who think quantum everything is where your taxes should go, business investors and companies are willing to putting in big money, too. This has had a dramatic impact on quantum physics research in the past decade. It’s also created a lot of hype, especially around quantum computing. But if so much of quantum computing is hype then why are companies like Google and IBM pouring so much money into it, what’ll happen when the investment bubble bursts, what’s the “quantum winter”, and what does it mean for all of us? That’s what we’ll talk about today.

        There are several different quantum technologies, and as a rule of thumb, the fewer headlines they make, the more promising they are. Take for example, quantum metrology. That’s not a mispronunciation of meteorology, that’s making better measurements with quantum effects. You basically never read anything about this. But it’s really promising and already being used by scientists to improve their own experiments. You can learn more about this in my earlier video.

    • Education

      • Bjoern Brembsbjoern.brembs.blog – Interacting learning systems at SfN22

        I just sent the poster for this year’s Society for Neuroscience meeting to the printer. As our graduate student is preparing his defense and our postdoc did not get a visa (no thanks, US!), we just have a single poster this year and I will present it myself on Monday, November 14, 2022, 8:00 AM – 12:00 PM, on poster board WW53.

    • Security

      • Unattended Upgrades Debian – Patryk’s blog

        Feels like since forever have I been using unattended-upgrades package to automate the Security upgrades on my various Debian Stable based machines.

      • ACMCan We Secure Cryptography Against Quantum Attacks? [Ed: Hyping up "Crypto"; make keys longer, be done with it; it's not like encryption that works isn't possible]

        While a useful quantum computer is still under development, it already is known that when adversaries will start to use it, today’s public-key cryptography will be broken. To protect digital information and services against attacks with a quantum computer, a new type of cryptography is needed: post-quantum cryptography.

        The 9th Heidelberg Laureate Forum organized a panel discussion on post-quantum cryptography that included three Turing Award recipients: Adi Shamir (the S in RSA), Whitfield Diffie (of the Diffie-Hellman key exchange protocol), and Vint Cerf (co-developer of the TCP/IP Internet protocol suite). They were accompanied by two research scientists at IBM Research Europe in Zürich, Switzerland, from a younger generation: Vadim Lyubashevsky and Gregor Seiler, who contributed to the design and implementation of some of the cryptographic schemes selected by the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in July 2022 as upcoming standards for public-key encryption and digital signatures.

      • NVISO LabsNVISO EXCELS IN MITRE ATT-CK® MANAGED SERVICES EVALUATION – NVISO Labs [Ed: Bogus badges and vanity NFTs?]

        As one of the only EU-based Cyber Security companies, NVISO successfully participated in a first-of-its-kind, MITRE-led, evaluation of Managed Security Services (MSS).

      • Privacy/Surveillance

        • Ruben SchadeRubenerd: An app to not be run over

          A large American automaker published a press release discussing a proposed new mobile app designed to make roads safer.

          [...]

          The popular press have been vague on how this would work, and there are plenty of confused people on threads about the topic. But it’s clear from the PR that the car company intends for this to be a smartphone app that would communicate over Bluetooth Low Energy to vehicle “infotainment” systems.

          Infotainment has to be among the most obnoxious new words we use, right up there with zine, sheeple, and utilise.

          It sounds dystopian on its surface, and I was tempted to leave it at that grim observation! But the more I peeled back the idea, the more nonsensical it became. Let’s take a drive.

        • ACMNon-cooperative wi-fi localization & its privacy implications

          We present Wi-Peep – a new location-revealing privacy attack on non-cooperative Wi-Fi devices. Wi-Peep exploits loopholes in the 802.11 protocol to elicit responses from Wi-Fi devices on a network that we do not have access to. It then uses a novel time-of-flight measurement scheme to locate these devices. Wi-Peep works without any hardware or software modifications on target devices and without requiring access to the physical space that they are deployed in. Therefore, a pedestrian or a drone that carries a Wi-Peep device can estimate the location of every Wi-Fi device in a building. Our Wi-Peep design costs $20 and weighs less than 10 g. We deploy it on a lightweight drone and show that a drone flying over a house can estimate the location of Wi-Fi devices across multiple floors to meter-level accuracy. Finally, we investigate different mitigation techniques to secure future Wi-Fi devices against such attacks.

        • Franz DillCutting Back on Alexa AI?

          As reported by The Wall Street Journal, Amazon is aiming to cut costs by slimming down some of its less profitable departments. The big one is Alexa, Amazon’s voice assistant software. Despite Alexa’s existence inside millions of Echo devices and other smart speakers around the world, the business of building, supporting, and licensing a voice assistant platform has apparently been less profitable than Amazon hoped. (According to WSJ, the Alexa business has been operating at a $5 billion-per-year loss.)

        • VideoSignal Is Losing Its Way – Invidious

          This week in Business News, Tesla will be rolling out Zoom calls in the car, YouTube keeps pushing shorts in the worst of places, and Microsoft has new tests going on in the developer previews. Also, Signal is starting to lose its way. We also go to SillyVille.

        • Stacey on IoTWhy aren’t there any Matter smoke alarms? [Ed: Smoke alarms should not be connected. Keep is simple, functional, and energy-efficient]

          On a recent Internet of Things Podcast episode, we took a question on our Voicemail hotline from Sam. Given all of the recent Matter news, Sam is wondering if there are any smoke detectors that support Matter right now. It’s a good question because some people aren’t clear about what the first device types will support.

          Unfortunately, smoke and carbon dioxide detectors aren’t in the first bunch of supported device types. That’s not likely to change for quite a while either.

    • Environment

    • Finance

      • Michael West MediaThe new clean, transparent Teal politics (you still gotta bring your money) – Michael West

        They’re in the money. Who? The Teal MPs who represent Australia’s wealthiest electorates, of course, writes Mark Sawyer.

      • Michael West MediaA Perfect Slime: Scott Morrison’s slippery Sports Rorts report just the fix for Bridget McKenzie – Michael West

        It’s a Sports Rorts whitewash. Scott Morrison’s former chief-of-staff and top bureaucrat Philip Gaetjens fortuitously found “no evidence” of pork barrelling by Senator Bridget McKenzie. Rex Patrick on how disappearing documents and political double-speak converged for an artful cover-up.

        Very few people knew about prime minister Scott Morrison’s ‘Governance Committee of Cabinet’. It was almost as secret as his multiple ministerial appointments.

        Its role was stated to “provide advice and oversight of governance and integrity issues, which include, but are not limited to, the Statement of Ministerial Standards and issues arising from the Lobbyist Code”.

      • Michael West MediaBanks rake in $29 billion profit bonanza as rates on mortgages outpace rates on savings – Michael West

        The big four Aussie banks have posted a $29 billion profit, a 10% increase over last year, with more to come as interest rates rise, reports Callum Foote.

        It was a massive week for Australia’s banks. With Westpac’s profit result posted on Wednesday morning, the picture of the big four banks’ dazzling profitability is complete. Money-printing from Covid stimulus, as well as rising interest rates, are helping massively too.

        Together, the big four have posted record profits, totalling $29 billion for the year ending September 2022.

        Commonwealth Bank makes up a third at $10 billion. ANZ and NAB posted $7 billion each with Westpac recording a $6 billion profit.

      • Michael West MediaThe Usual Suspects: tax office dump lays bare Australia’s biggest tax dodgers – Michael West

        It’s the fossil fuel corporations again, the usual suspects, paying no income tax despite billions in income. For yet another year: Exxon nought, Shell nought, Ampol, BP and APLNG nought, and Chevron putting them all to shame with the $30 in income tax paid on its $9bn in revenues.

        The annual Tax Office transparency report found around half of mining and energy stocks pay zero income tax. The thing to watch with these figures is the timing. This is last year’s data and does not capture the huge spike in coal and gas prices earlier this year from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. And therefore the huge spike in foreign corporate profits being made at the expense of Australian energy consumers.

        How do they do it? Multinational coal and gas companies exploit the failed PRRT oil and gas tax by wiping out tax obligations on profits with losses on their newer exploration projects, they also “debt-load” aggressively, that is write loans from their Australian entities to their offshore companies and the interest on these loans flows offshore thereby wiping out the tax bill.

      • Matt RickardOn FTX

        A collection of some thoughts on the FTX meltdown over the last few days.

        [...]

        FTX did not have a board of directors. I’m all for founders having the freedom to follow their vision, but the most successful leaders surround themselves with even smarter people who challenge them.

        Regulation matters. FTX was headquartered in the Bahamas, and Alameda Research is in Hong Kong. FTX.us is a US-based exchange, which is much smaller.

        The relationship between FTX and Alameda Research seems like it crossed the line. Having both an exchange and a market-maker business (more like a hedge fund) can quickly get you in trouble if you aren’t careful.

        When everything looks good, it’s easy to gloss over specifics. So you have to do deep research no matter what. FTX had raised from top venture capital firms – Sequoia, Race, Ribbit, and Softbank.

      • Michael West MediaLifters and leaners: energy giants and Rupert bludging on tax again, big banks and miners pay their dues – Michael West

        The schism between the lifters and leaners in corporate Australia has deepened. BHP, Rio and the banks are tipping in massive tax while tax paid by fossil fuel giants remains paltry, abjectly failing to merit a social licence to operate in Australia. Callum Foote peruses the latest tax data.

        It’s the usual mob, the leaners that is, again. Foreign gas giants and petrol corporations, Rupert Murdoch’s News Australia Holdings, LendLease, Qantas, the financial engineers from Brookfield, real estate stapled trusts and infrastructure securities such as Sydney Airport, Transurban and Mirvac (their members are supposed to pay the tax). Zip.

      • Michael West MediaJoyce won’t stop jesting, but can Albo and the public avoid being dacksed again? – Michael West

        Taxpayers didn’t rate a mention at the Flying Kangaroo’s AGM on Friday. But as the excuses for poor performance pile up, the airline is planning to play on our patriotism and better judgment in its push to thwart competitors, writes Michael Sainsbury.

        Prime Minister Anthony Albanese had his pants pulled down well and truly by Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce when the Irish-Australian blindsided him by grounding the airline’s fleet in 2011, when the now PM was transport minister. Albanese was told nothing until after the grounding order was given. He and Prime Minister Julia Gillard were furious.

        Now, Joyce is trying to do it again as Qantas battles a bid by Qatar Airways to double its flights into Australia, which it lodged last week barely a year after Qantas pocketed the last of about $2 billion in taxpayer subsidies. Airfares both domestically and internationally are soaring and is now the main source of complaints about the company on social media.

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • Michael West MediaPerrottet backflip another boon for pokies in Rum Rebellion reprise – Michael West

        The Crime Commission report found rampant money-laundering in pubs and clubs, yet just days later NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet caves in on his pokies reform. Is NSW reprising the Rum Rebellion? Michael West reports.

        Just to get this right … the NSW government has shelved laws to regulate the pokies and done them a favour instead? Instead of a cashless pokies card to combat money-launderers and addicted gamblers, as was proposed by Premier Dominic Perrottet, they’ve canned that idea now and gone with facial recognition technology, just what the pokies lobby ordered. No reform, just a straight “next drinks!”

        The clubs pokies lobby ClubsNSW did not only get what it didn’t want – cashless pokies – they got what they did want too – facial recognition – technology that will allow them to track their problem gamblers even more closely.

      • Dhole MomentsContemplating the Future

        As everyone knows, Elon Musk is now running Twitter directly into the ground. Who knows? Maybe he needed some inspiration for the Boring Company.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • Michael West MediaChildren, go where we send you – Michael West

        Thursday began with reports of wayward lions and never-ending lines of parents wanting to put their kid into childcare. The latter story isn’t quite as eye-catching but more far-reaching for the nation.

        ”Childcare operators say they are struggling to fill vacancies,” an ABC report warned. ”The government says its new subsidies will allow 37,000 parents to work full-time. But the sector says there are not enough workers to support that.”

        So it’s a fairly familiar saga. Parents can’t get places and are threatened with fee rises. Childcare operators, unable to find or keep staff, want wage subsidies. The fresh aspect is the hope that the Albanese government’s industrial relations changes will drive up the low wages and help fill the 7000 vacancies in the sector.

    • Monopolies

      • CoryDoctorowThe good news is that Penguin Random House can’t buy all the other publishers

        The whole health supply chain is monopolized, except for the patients at one end (paying higher prices for worse care) and the health care workers at the other end (getting paid less to work under worse conditions). The giants that run the industry may fight one another over how to divide the pie, but they all agree that we should get crumbs.

      • ACMAmazon Launches Warehouse Robot That Can Do Human Jobs [Ed: Amazon does not "create jobs" but steals jobs and then hands them over to non-jobs]

        Amazon has rolled out a new warehouse robot in order to automate more jobs as the company seeks to reduce logistics costs.

        The company said the Sparrow robotic arm is the first robot that can “detect, select, and handle individual products in our inventory,” jobs once performed only by warehouse employees.

        The robotic arm identifies and picks up small objects with the help of computer vision technology and suction cups.

        Amazon, which has developed 700 new robotics-related job “categories,” said Sparrow will “benefit” employees by allowing them to focus more on less-repetitive warehouse tasks.

      • WiredHurricane Ian Destroyed Their Homes. Algorithms Sent Them Money

        WHEN Hurricane Ian churned over Florida in late September, it left a trail of destruction from high winds and flooding. But a week after the storm passed, some people in three of the worst-hit counties saw an unexpected beacon of hope.

        Nearly 3,500 residents of Collier, Charlotte, and Lee Counties received a push notification on their smartphones offering $700 cash assistance, no questions asked. A Google algorithm deployed in partnership with nonprofit GiveDirectly had estimated from satellite images that those people lived in badly damaged neighborhoods and needed some help.

  • Gemini* and Gopher

    • Personal

      • In Memoriam: Unus Annus

        Every once in a while, something truly once in a lifetime comes along and you find yourself witness to an event that will never happen again. Unus Annus was one of those events for me, but even that is understating just how much it changed me.

        For those who don’t know, and for those fortunate enough to only need a reminder, Unus Annus was a YouTube channel and collaborative experiment created by Mark Fischbach and Ethan Nester, better known by the handles Markiplier and CrankGameplays. On November 13th, 2019 the channel was created with the ultimatum that it would only exist for exactly one year. The goal was that Unus Annus would be a truly once in a lifetime experience. Videos on the internet are immortalized forever, near-permanently available to rewatch over and over again. The automatic and easily accessed archival of online experiences means that very few things can ever truly give the experience of witnessing something that happens only once.

      • Five (Very Bad) Cybernetic Poems

        These Five Poems In English are generated from my app “Cybernetic Poet” written in FreeBASIC based of a database of old poems of mine…

      • 🔤SpellBinding: CDENOSY Wordo: DOUBT
    • Technical

      • Science

        • BBCHow to store data for 1,000 years – BBC Future

          Most current data storage systems eventually stop working. But there are alternatives on the horizon.

        • Jeff GeerlingExploring a 1 MW FM Radio Tower with my Dad

          I asked him about how the audio gets routed through the transmitter site, how HD (digital) and analog signals are mixed, how that’s all routed a giant combiner room with 9″ solid coaxial cables, then delivered through NO2 pressurized lines up to the antenna system 1115 ft (340 m) up in the air.

          There’s a lot of fascinating little details you might not think about when you see one of these masts sticking up into the sky, including support, grounding, cable management, transmitter cooling (including a rare sighting of a water-cooled FM transmitter!), and backup power.

        • The Washington PostDan O’Dowd is the rich tech CEO spending millions to stop Elon Musk – The Washington Post

          Dan O’Dowd says Tesla’s ‘Full Self Driving’ software shouldn’t be on the road. He’ll keep running over test dummies until someone listens.

      • Internet/Gemini

        • Internationalizing Zond

          My capsule generator, Zond, hasn’t seen a lot of new features lately because it’s been pretty feature complete, at least for my own usage. I have been keeping on top of tracking newer versions of it’s dependencies as they come out. I also periodically run `clippy` as new versions of the compiler come out to check it against all of the latest lints, which over time tends to accumulate a number of changes making the code more idiomatic. But other than that it hasn’t really changed much and has just been a rock solid boring tool for me.

          [...]

          In looking at Fluent I do think that it is a better designed system. In particular, it allows one to place variables into your string translations, so any portion of a string which is going to remain static accross all languages can be placed into the correct grammatical position accross all languages. However, there is a lot to be said for inertia in software, and if I’m going to go through the work to make Zond i18n capable then I want to also make it as easy as possible on potential translators. Gettext has been a standard for such a long time and has great tools that have grown up around it’s use such as Poedit. So ultimately that’s what I went with.

      • Programming

        • Another Smol Journal: Forty years a programmer

          Forty years of programming, or thereabouts — 1982 is probably about right, as the start of my programming years.

          Early on, it was Forth and Pascal and Basic and Modula-2 and assembler (which I have yet to write much of, but got so I could read it anyways – 6502, z80, 68000).

          Then there was C. Then there was Lisp and Prolog and then Perl and then ABC and then Python and Lisp and Prolog some more. And always Forth, through these times.

          And J. And I got stuck on J. J is hard. I’m still stuck, although now I’m stuck in dyalog apl, which is a very sweet dev environment that I am a complete newbie in. I seem to be unable to program with arrays; I need records (aka structs), it seems. Still trying to crack this nut. I remember seeing an APL machine in around 1982 or so, it was basically a laptop, from Japan (iirc). I’ve wanted to grok (and use) APL ever since. I believe that there’s a major “aha” moment I have yet to have about doing modern enterprise class computing (cf: codd’s relational model of data) using APL. There’s a secret sauce, and I’m pretty sure I’ve read about it, but I still haven’t quite got it.


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DecorWhat Else is New


  1. [Meme] Job Ethics

    Ethical development jobs may not be easy to find; some ethical jobs can turn immoral after many years and then it’s time to leave (there’s no turnaround when HR gravitates towards immoral business and chronically relies on deceit)



  2. The Morality of Your Clients and Suppliers Should Matter (It No Longer Matters in Sirius 'Open Source')

    One very important (and perhaps lifelong) lesson learned in my last job is that clients and agenda can change rapidly as a result of rotation in management and a loss of moral compass; it's critical to check not only what employer one works for but who the upstream and downstream entities are (their nature can change for the worse when the employer becomes desperate and neglects ethics in pursuit of money)



  3. Links 02/12/2022: Fedora Gets Sway Spin; Samsung, LG, Mediatek Certificates Compromised

    Links for the day



  4. [Meme] Sirius Open Wash Ltd.

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  5. Sirius Open Source is No Longer Open Source and It's Simply Unethical to Stay There

    The company where I've worked since my twenties is going under; now it's trying to find excuses to deny compensation to staff while failing to pay very basic bills and liabilities; there are many other issues that deserve the light of day



  6. Links 02/12/2022: GNU/Linux Growing Fast in Steam, Twitter Crumbling

    Links for the day



  7. IRC Proceedings: Thursday, December 01, 2022

    IRC logs for Thursday, December 01, 2022



  8. Links 02/12/2022: RawTherapee 5.9 and Camerctrls

    Links for the day



  9. Links 01/12/2022: NixOS 22.11 Released and Genode OS 22.11 is Ready

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  10. The Outdated Microsoft Worldview (Mindframe of Post-Mainframe Era): A Mindset of Windows Being Ubiquitous in the Market (and Where It Cannot be Avoided)

    It's mostly incorrect to describe Windows as something that cannot be avoided in technical occupations or something that's worth learning (or actively using)



  11. Condé Nast (Owner of Reddit and Many Other Microsoft-Funded Sites) Promoting Software Patents

    SoylentNews is boosting Condé Nast fluff, including glorification of software patents which ought not be granted at all after 35 U.S.C. § 101/Alice



  12. Twitter: Not a Platform for Activism But for AstroTurfing and Manipulation by States and Plutocracy

    More people are finding out that social control media is all about control; it is controlled by states and oligarchs, it's not a grassroots tool



  13. Links 01/12/2022: Release of Arti 1.1.0, Date for Red Hat Summit 2023

    Links for the day



  14. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, November 30, 2022

    IRC logs for Wednesday, November 30, 2022



  15. Links 30/11/2022: Mesa 22.3, EuroLinux 9.1, and Texinfo 7.0.1

    Links for the day



  16. Links 30/11/2022: Plasma Mobile Gear 22.11

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  17. Links 30/11/2022: More Twitter Trouble and Tor Browser 11.5.10 (Android)

    Links for the day



  18. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, November 29, 2022

    IRC logs for Tuesday, November 29, 2022



  19. Nat Friedman: Frauds, Software Patents, and Mass Surveillance

    The con man who helped Microsoft promote .NET/C# (inside GNU/Linux) after he had worked at Microsoft, and who later helped Microsoft engage in mass plagiarism via GitHub, is not what the innocent face seemingly projects; Nat Friedman is a very dangerous and sinister person



  20. Links 30/11/2022: Gaming on GNU/Linux With Mac PCs, onak 0.6.2 Released

    Links for the day



  21. Links 29/11/2022: Proxmox 2.3 "Backup Server" and wayland-protocols 1.31

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  22. Links 29/11/2022: Bodhi Linux 7.0.0 Coming

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  23. IRC Proceedings: Monday, November 28, 2022

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  24. Links 29/11/2022: Whonix 16.0.9.0 and SalixLive Xfce 15.0

    Links for the day



  25. António Campinos Could Not Possibly Choose a Worse Time to Show Solidarity With Communist China

    The Unified Patent Court or "Unitary Patent" gets promoted in the same blog post or news item that celebrates dictatorship; that seems appropriate given the nature of the Unified Patent Court, which is a gross violation of laws and constitutions in a high-level institutional way



  26. Blogs Are Better and Gemlogs (Blogs Over Gemini) May be Best

    There seems to be a growing and already-widespread realisation that Twitter sucks and some people rightly suggest that we pivot back into blogging (Twitter is often blamed for the demise of blogs)



  27. Links 28/11/2022: Snal Linux 1.24 and Thunderbird Android Update

    Links for the day



  28. Links 28/11/2022: OpenRGB 0.8 and Introduction of KIO AFC

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  29. Links 27/11/2022: Linux 6.1 RC 7

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  30. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, November 27, 2022

    IRC logs for Sunday, November 27, 2022


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