01.22.23

Gemini version available ♊︎

Links 22/01/2023: helloSystem 0.8 Released

Posted in News Roundup at 8:08 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Desktop/Laptop

    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • VideoFedora Ships A Filtered Flathub – Custom Repo?? – Invidious

        If you use Fedora you probably know about it’s weird flatpak situation but for the rest of us did you know Fedora filters flathub and even has it’s own custom flatpak repo.

      • VideoOpen Source Metaverse? – Invidious

        This week in Business News, Google will update Stadia controllers to prevent e-waste, Windows breaks itself with multiple updates, and the self-driving Tesla video was apparently staged. We also see the Linux Foundation creating an open source metaverse. We also visit sillyville.

      • VideoLinux Distro Identical To Macos – Invidious

        In This Video We Are Looking At helloSystem is a desktop system for creators with focus on simplicity, elegance, and usability. Based on FreeBSD.

      • VideoNetrunner 23 “Vaporwave” – New version based on Debian 11 Bullseye – Invidious

        In This Video We Are Looking At Netrunner 23 “Vaporwave” Developed by Blue Systems , which is also developing the Kubuntu and linuxmint KDE version ; offering multimedia codecs, Flash and Java plug-ins along with a highly customized KDE desktop environment; 23 version of Debian-based Netrunner codenamed “Vaporwave” has been announced.

    • Kernel Space

    • Applications

      • Linux Links12 Best Free and Open Source Console Email Clients – LinuxLinks

        For the traditionalists, emails remains a fundamental part of the operating system. Fortunately, there is a wide selection of free email software available on the Linux platform which is stable, feature laden, and ideal for personal and business environments.

        The vast majority of Linux users would never be satisfied without access to a graphical user interface. However, even in 2021 there remain many reasons why console based applications can be extremely desirable.

        Although console applications are very useful for updating, configuring, and repairing a system, their benefits are not only confined to system administration. Console based applications are light on system resources (very useful on low spec machines), can be faster and more efficient than their graphical counterparts, they do not stop working when X/Wayland needs to be restarted, and they are great for scripting purposes.

      • Linux Links10 Best Free and Open Source Shells – LinuxLinks

        The shell is a program that takes commands from the keyboard and gives them to the operating system to perform. This environment lets users run commands, programs, and shell scripts. The shell is both an interactive command language and a scripting language, and is used by the operating system to control the execution of the system using shell scripts.

        The first Unix shell was the Thompson shell, sh, written by Ken Thompson at Bell Labs back in the early 1970s. Nowadays, on many Linux systems, bash (which stands for Bourne Again SHell) acts as the shell program. It was first released in 1989, and implements the POSIX standard plus many extensions.

        But there are lots of other free and open source shells available for Linux. We spotlight our recommended free and open source shells.

      • LinuxiacRSS Guard 4.3.0 Brings Massive Performance Improvements

        RSS Guard 4.3.0 open source cross-platform RSS feed reader brings users a considerable performance boost for the feed fetching mechanism.

        RSS feed readers are valuable tools for staying connected to the world around you while focusing on the digital content that is important to you. They allow you to subscribe to RSS feeds from your favorite websites, blogs, and news outlets, making it easy to keep track of new content as it becomes available.

        One such tool is RSS Guard, which has just released its brand new 4.3.0 version, promising significant improvements over previous ones. So, let’s see what has changed.

      • OMG Ubuntu’Damask’ is a New Wallpaper App for Linux Desktops – OMG! Ubuntu!

        Scores of wallpaper downloader apps exist for Linux, with most able to fetch high-quality backgrounds from a myriad of online sources and set them as your desktop wallpaper.

        Damask is another such app making its debut on Flathub this weekend.

        Built using GTK4 and following the GNOME HIG, Damask fits in perfectly on the modern Ubuntu desktop.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • VideoHow to install Krita on KDE Neon – Invidious

        In this video, we are looking at how to install Krita on KDE Neon.

      • Linux Made SimpleHow to install the Waterfox browser on a Chromebook

        Today we are looking at how to install the Waterfox browser on a Chromebook.

      • Linux Made SimpleHow to install FL Studio 21 on a Chromebook

        Today we are looking at how to install FL Studio 21 on a Chromebook with Wine, an application layer that allows us to install some Windows applications on Linux. Please follow the video/audio guide as a tutorial where we explain the process step by step and use the commands below.

      • ID RootHow To Install UVdesk Helpdesk System on Ubuntu 22.04 LTS – idroot

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install UVdesk Helpdesk System on Ubuntu 22.04 LTS. For those of you who didn’t know, UVdesk is a powerful helpdesk system that can help businesses manage customer support and communication. It offers a variety of tools for handling customer inquiries, such as email and ticket management, an integrated knowledge base, and a customer self-service portal. Additionally, UVdesk is fully customizable and offers integrations with other popular business software.

        This article assumes you have at least basic knowledge of Linux, know how to use the shell, and most importantly, you host your site on your own VPS. The installation is quite simple and assumes you are running in the root account, if not you may need to add ‘sudo‘ to the commands to get root privileges. I will show you the step-by-step installation of the UVdesk Helpdesk System on Ubuntu 22.04 (Jammy Jellyfish). You can follow the same instructions for Ubuntu 22.04 and any other Debian-based distribution like Linux Mint, Elementary OS, Pop!_OS, and more as well.

      • H2S MediaHow to Install Stress or Stress-ng on AWS Amazon linux 2

        Analyze your server’s performance by installing the Stress workload generator tool on Amazon Linux to test the system’s stability and ability to handle the workload.

        To measure the ability of the systems, testers generally use stress tools, and in Linux, we have that free of cost to use. We can define the amount of stress we want to put on our Amazon Linux 2 server to test the system’s stability and performance.

      • How to install Docker on Rocky Linux – Darryl Dias

        Docker is a platform for developers and system administrators to develop, ship, and run applications in containers. Containers are lightweight, portable, and self-sufficient environments that allow applications to run consistently across different environments. It allows developers to package their applications and dependencies into a container, which can then be easily deployed and run on any host with Docker installed. This helps to ensure that the application will run the same way in the development, testing, and production environments.

      • VideoHow to Nvidia Prime Render Offload for Better Performance on Debian Linux – Invidious

        Debian supports Nvidia Optimus via the Prime Render Offload environment variables out of the box when using the closed-source Nvidia drivers. Using the closed-source drivers isn’t desirable but it’s required if you want to do any 3D gaming on Linux. The latest drivers integrate with the iGPU via Nvidia Optimus so you can switch between GPUs and get better performance and better battery life.

      • Ubuntu HandbookStupid Easy Way to Transfer Small Files to or from Ubuntu 22.04 | UbuntuHandbook

        There are quite a few ways to transfer files between different machines. For Ubuntu and most other Linux, here’s an easy way for choice.

        Usually, I use a USB cable or a messenger app for transferring photo images between my personal PC and mobile devices.

        However, my USB cable is always NOT near at hand and I hate to scan QR code again and again on PC for logging 3rd app. In this case, creating a temporary http file server with Python is an easy and good choice.

      • Install the sf package on Ubuntu 20.04 – Pachá

        I was unable to install the sf package on a clean Ubuntu 20.04 setup, and the problem is attributed to incompatible software versions. My workaround, instead of installing the package from source, was to install a precompiled binary package, but that depends on configuring a PPA for GDAL.

      • Linux HintCommonly Used DNS with Example Usage

        DNS servers are how the internet exists. It’s through DNS that the hostnames and domain names are resolved to get their IP addresses. Each system has default tools to troubleshoot the DNS errors. For system administrators, resolving the DNS issues is a common task.

        This post highlights the different tools that you can use to troubleshoot and check your DNS. We will mention the tool and give an example of its usage.

      • Linux HintHow to Check the Disk Space in Linux from the Command Line

        When working with Linux, you must quickly check the available space on your system. That way, you can keep a tab on your drives to ensure that you don’t run out of space. Checking the disk space is straightforward, depending on your GUI desktop. However, when you have a headless server, you need a way to check your disk space using the command line.

        This guide focuses on checking the disk space in Linux via the command line.

      • TecAdminHow To Set Up Nginx Reverse Proxy: A Step-By-Step Tutorial

        A reverse proxy is a type of server that sits between a client and a server, acting as an intermediary between the two. It accepts the requests from clients, forwards those requests to the appropriate server, and then returns the server’s response to the client.

      • Learn UbuntuFind Apt Packages that Consume the Most Space on Ubuntu

        If you are running out of space on the system, the most basic thing to do is check what is taking up how much space.

        There will be several factors behind that. From logs to cache, it could be anything.

        But have you ever wondered which application is taking more space? Yes, this is possible for apt packages at least.

        And this guide is focused on how you can check the APT packages that consume the most space on Ubuntu.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • OMG! LinuxWow, GNOME 44’s New Backgrounds Are Stunning – OMG! Linux

          A fresh set of supplemental wallpapers will accompany the GNOME 44 release this spring, and no lie: they’re stunning.

          I care about desktop wallpapers more than most. On my desktop (with a 4K screen) I rarely run any app maximised, thus I see more of my desktop than the average person does.

          But even if you don’t, it’s not a bad thing to want something pleasing to look at when all apps are closed or minimized out of the way.

          And in GNOME 44 you won’t have to look far to find something that suits.

  • Distributions and Operating Systems

    • OMG! LinuxhelloSystem 0.8 Released (FreeBSD-Based OS Inspired by macOS) – OMG! Linux

      Before you say it, I know: this site is titled omg! linux and not omg! BSD – despite this I’m gonna ask you to waive this post through.

      See, I’m kinda hard-wired to be interested in alternative operating systems. I’ve been that way ever since I discovered Linux in 2007. The fact you could run something OTHER than Windows on a PC? It was BIG news to me.

  • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

    • Web Browsers/Web Servers

      • Mozilla

        • Ruben SchadeDesktop email, and from Alpine to Thunderbird

          In my experience, fewer phrases elicit as much surprise in technical circles as desktop email client. Even among those who still use them at work—by choice or otherwise—fewer do at home. It’s akin to admitting you still use floppy disks or, perhaps a more adjacent analogy, Lotus Notes.

          Web email is good enough for most people, and probably has been for a long time. You run it in most browsers and devices, you don’t need to worry about syncing, and it’s one fewer application to configure, upgrade, and maintain. That first one is key; email autoconfiguration just works sometimes, but there are enough edge cases to keep it from being as foolproof as logging into a website like Hotmail. Is that still a thing?

          I’d also guess that most people don’t know how email works under the hood, such as the protocols (or the fact its sent and stored in plaintext, but that’s a separate issue). To them, email is another glorified social network, which also lends itself to being loaded in a browser like their social media data harvester of choice.

          [...]

          I’ve used a mix of Thunderbird and Alpine for years, but I made the fateful decision last weekend to merge everything into Thunderbird and call it a day. I’ll continue to recommend Alpine for those who want to live out of a terminal, but I find a high-resolution, bitmapped display with a mouse is an easier, denser interface for email tasks.

    • GNU Projects

    • Programming/Development

      • Dirk EddelbuettelDirk Eddelbuettel: Rcpp 1.0.10 on CRAN: Regular Update

        The Rcpp team is thrilled to announce the newest release 1.0.10 of the Rcpp package which is hitting CRAN now and will go to Debian shortly. Windows and macOS builds should appear at CRAN in the next few days, as will builds in different Linux distribution and of course at r2u. The release was prepared a few days ago, but given the widespread use at CRAN it took a few days to be processed. As always, our sincere thanks to the CRAN maintainers Uwe Ligges and Kurt Hornik. This release continues with the six-months cycle started with release 1.0.5 in July 2020. As a reminder, we do of course make interim snapshot ‘dev’ or ‘rc’ releases available via the Rcpp drat repo and strongly encourage their use and testing—I run my systems with these versions which tend to work just as well, and are also fully tested against all reverse-dependencies.

        Rcpp has become the most popular way of enhancing R with C or C++ code. Right now, around 2623 packages on CRAN depend on Rcpp for making analytical code go faster and further, along with 252 in BioConductor. On CRAN, 13.7% of all packages depend (directly) on CRAN, and 58.7% of all compiled packages do. From the cloud mirror of CRAN (which is but a subset of all CRAN downloads), Rcpp has been downloaded 67.1 million times.

      • Dirk EddelbuettelBH 1.81.0-1 oon CRAN: New Upstream, New Library, sprintf Change

        Boost is a very large and comprehensive set of (peer-reviewed) libraries for the C++ programming language, containing well over one hundred individual libraries. The BH package provides a sizeable subset of header-only libraries for (easier, no linking required) use by R. It is fairly widely used: the (partial) CRAN mirror logs (aggregated from the cloud mirrors) show over 32.6 million package downloads.

        Version 1.81.0 of Boost was released in December following the regular Boost release schedule of April, August and December releases. As the commits and changelog show, we packaged it almost immediately and started testing following our annual update cycle which strives to balance being close enough to upstream and not stressing CRAN and the user base too much. The reverse depends check revealed about a handful of packages requiring changes or adjustments which is a pretty good outcome given the over three hundred direct reverse dependencies. So we opened issue #88 to coordinate the issue over the winter break during which CRAN also closes (just as we did before), and also send a wider ‘PSA’ tweet as a heads-up. Our sincere thanks to the two packages that already updated, and the four that likely will soon. Our thanks also to CRAN for reviewing the package impact over the last few days since I uploaded the package earlier this week.

      • Drew DeVaultSetting a new focus for my blog

        Since writing this, I have been considering what exactly the essential subject of my dissatisfaction with my writing has been. I may have found the answer: I lost sight of my goals. I got so used to writing that I would often think to myself, “I want to write a blog post!”, then dig a topic out of my backlog (which is 264 items long) and write something about it. This is not the way; much of the effort expended on writing in this manner is not spent on the subjects I care about most, or those which most urgently demand an expenditure of words.

        The consequences of this misalignment of perspective are that my writing has often felt dull and rote. It encourages shallower takes and lends itself to the rants or unthoughtful criticisms that my writings are, unfortunately, (in)famous for. When I take an idea off of the shelf, or am struck by an idea that, in the moment, seemingly demands to be spake of, I often end up with a disappointing result when the fruit of this inspiration is published a few hours later.

        Over the long term, these issues manifest as demerits to my reputation, and deservedly so. What’s more, when a critical tone is well-justified, the posts which utilize it are often overlooked by readers due to the normalization of this tone throughout less important posts. Take for instance my recent post on Rust in Linux. Though this article could have been written with greater nuance, I still find its points about the value of conservatism in software decision-making accurate and salient. However, the message is weakened riding on the coat-tails of my long history of less poignant critiques of Rust. As I resume my writing, I will have to take a more critical examination of myself and the broader context of my writing before reaching for a negative tone as a writing tool.

      • uni CaliforniaFully Autonomous Real-World Reinforcement Learning with Applications to Mobile Manipulation – The Berkeley Artificial Intelligence Research Blog

        Training this multi-level policy was not only more efficient than learning both skills at the same time but it allowed for the grasping controller to inform the navigation policy. Having a model that estimates the uncertainty in its grasp success (Ours above) can be used to improve navigation exploration by skipping areas without graspable objects, in contrast to No Uncertainty Bonus which does not use this information. The model can also be used to relabel data during training so that in the unlucky case when the grasping model was unsuccessful trying to grasp an object within its reach, the grasping policy can still provide some signal by indicating that an object was there but the grasping policy has not yet learned how to grasp it. Moreover, learning modular models has engineering benefits. Modular training allows for reusing skills that are easier to learn and can enable building intelligent systems one piece at a time. This is beneficial for many reasons, including safety evaluation and understanding.

      • ACMThe Premature Obituary of Programming [Ed: Confronting Microsoft "HEY HI" propaganda and plagiarism in new clothing]

        Deep learning (DL) has arrived, not only for natural language, speech, and image processing but also for coding, which I refer to as deep programming (DP). DP is used to detect similar programs, find relevant code, translate programs from one language to another, discover software defects, and to synthesize programs from a natural language description. The advent of large transformer language models10 is now being applied to programs with encouraging results. Just like DL is enabled by the enormous amount of textual and image data available on the Internet, DP is enabled by the vast amount of code available in open source repositories such as GitHub, as well as the ability to reuse libraries via modern package managers such as npm and pip. Two trail-blazing transformer-based DP systems are OpenAI’s Codex8 and Deepmind’s AlphaCode.18 The former is used in the Github Copilot project14 and integrates with development environments to automatically suggest code to developers. The latter generates code to solve problems presented at coding competitions. Both achieve amazing results. Multiple efforts are under way to establish code repositories for benchmarking DP, such as CodeXGLUE19 and CodeNET.20

      • ShinyProxy vs Posit Connect: Benchmark Test for Scaling Shiny Apps – R programming, Shiny for Python

        Shiny is a web framework for R (and now Python) users. With it, you can build a working dashboard for your analytics in a relatively short time. While it is easy to start developing dashboards without programming experience, the challenge comes with scaling. The quality and interactive method of data delivery will mean greater adoption and more users.

        There are many solutions to optimize dashboard performance for a single user. This includes examples like promises for non-blocking access and profvis to identify bottlenecks. However, to scale a Shiny application for a large number of users, the deployment environment plays a significant role.

      • Data Science TutorialsLearn Hadoop for Data Science – Data Science Tutorials

        Learn Hadoop for Data Science, Are you wondering why learning Hadoop is necessary for data science? You are on the appropriate page.

        You can read more about why Hadoop is essential for data scientists here. This article’s conclusion will include a case study showing how Marks & Spencer Company uses Hadoop to meet its data science needs.

      • Andrew HealeyProfiling and Optimizing an Interpreter — Andrew Healey

        In my last post, I added for loops to my interpreter for the nodots programming language. Today, I’m profiling and optimizing the same interpreter.

      • Junichi Uekawa: Working through crosvm dependencies in Debian.

        Working through crosvm dependencies in Debian. intrusive-collections Debian package went in. Next up is argh. I think most of them is there now and the next challenge is getting crosvm to build with the newer dependencies.

      • Linux HintO_RDONLY, O_WRONLY and O_RDWR Flags in C Language

        In programming, file management allows us to store and access any type of information whether in user-created databases, system files for running programs, executable files, and so on.

        The C language provides, among other things, the open() function to create or open files. This function opens or creates a file specified in the input arguments by its absolute or relative path.

        When we use this function, we have the possibility to specify via flags the attributes that the file to be opened or created must have, for example. whether it should be read-only, read-write or both.

        In this Linux Hint article, you will learn how to specify the read and write attributes of files using the O_RDONLY, O_WRONLY, and O_RDWR flags.

        We will look at a theoretical description of these flags and then implement their use in examples that include code snippets and images where we set read and write attributes with these flags.

      • R

      • Python

        • Linux HintPandas Weighted Average

          The weighted average is the average of the data that identifies the specific numbers that are more important than the other numbers in the DataFrame. We will be implementing all possible ways in which the Pandas weighted average can be calculated with the help of several examples.

        • Linux HintPandas Case When

          In this tutorial, we will perform different operations by using case statements and if-else statements. A case statement makes it possible to compare the value of a variable to a range of potential values. When the set of values is referred to or passed in the case statement, each value inside the set is checked by the cases or conditions inside the statement.

          Case statement in the Pandas DataFrame provides an output or returns a value if the condition is satisfied.

        • Linux HintPandas – Convert Categorical Values to Int Values

          The datasets for machine learning execution include both numerical and categorical variables. Categorical variables are string-type data that humans easily comprehend. Machines, on the other hand, cannot understand categorical inputs directly. Consequently, categorical content must be transformed into numerical values that machines can interpret.

        • Linux HintGet the Pandas DataFrame Rows Based on Index

          Basically, a Pandas DataFrame has two indices. These indices are distinguished by their axis. The row index is an index that is located along axis 0 (horizontal), whereas the column index is an index that is located along axis 1 (vertical).

          In this article, we will use iloc[] and loc[] functions to get the rows from the DataFrame. We need to specify the row and column ranges (start and end locations along the columns or rows). The location-based indexing can be used to query the Pandas DataFrames.

        • Linux HintPandas Json Normalize

          The “JSON” basically stands for the “JavaScript Object Notation”.

          Pandas has the most popular “data processing framework” in Python, which is the “JSON” normalize” feature. It is a built-in feature of Pandas. It is the simplest way to do the Pandas JSON normalization() using the “Python” request modules.

          In this article, we will see different levels of normalization.

        • VideoDo You Know About Pythons Keyword Only Arguments? – Invidious

          Did you know about pythons keyword only arguments?

        • VideoThis Python Trick Will Take Your List Game To The Next Level – Invidious
        • VideoPython Added A New Way To Assign With Walruses – Invidious

          Pythons new assignment expression is an interesting way to assign values

      • Rust

        • Hubert Figuièrei18n-format for Rust – Hubert Figuière

          A quick announcement for i18n-format, a Rust crate to help with string localization. While it’s not GNOME specific as it is only about gettext, I wrote it for GNOME applications.

          The goal is to allow the use of gettext! and ngettext! while xgettext can still extract the strings.

    • Standards/Consortia

      • Ruben SchadeRubenerd: Comments on FeedLand roadmap

        I see it as natural a thing to do as hosting WordPress, MediaWiki, and the static-generated site you’re reading now.

        [...]

        I’ll be interested to see what the technical requirements are. I briefly ran a Node.js and MariaDB stack on FreeBSD (my preferred server OS) for Ghost, so I’d expect the toolchain to be similar.

      • Manuel MatuzovicCSS color functions and custom properties – Manuel Matuzović

        I know I’m really late to the party, but I finally understood why people find color functions like hsl(), hwb(), or lab() so appealing.

        There are many reasons, but one of them is that in combination with custom properties, working with color functions is so much easier, cleaner, and understandable compared to working with hex colors or rbg().

  • Leftovers

    • Jim NielsenThe Art of Knowing When to Quit

      It feels like there’s a hesitancy to bring closure to any creative endeavor because what if it becomes successful? Sorry, you already brought it to an end so no more $$$.

      It feels like our culture’s impulse is to wring every last cent possible out of any creative endeavor — or at least leave open the possibility for more from the outset.

      [...]

      It reminds me of an interview I saw between Charlie Rose and Jerry Seinfeld. Jerry talks about how the incredible success of their sitcom Seinfeld could’ve allowed them to continue creating season after season. But he felt ending the show when they did (two years after co-creator Larry David had already left) was doing the audience a favor…

      [...]

      I think this goes for lots of creative endeavors, including software. There’s an art to knowing when — and how — to bring something to an end.

    • Health/Nutrition/Agriculture

      • Affordable device for fixing broken bones piloted in Gaza, Sri Lanka and Ukraine

        When soft tissue is severely damaged together with bone, external fixators are the first step in keeping fractures in legs and arms in place before an operation to definitively fix the bones can be carried out.

        However, their cost and low availability in many regions mean people resort to homemade or low-quality fixators that may lead to serious complications or improper healing.

        The Imperial external fixator is currently being tested in Gaza and Sri Lanka, and since the invasion of Ukraine, more than 500 fixators have been manufactured in Poland to help with the crisis.

      • VideoMortality by vaccination status ONS critique

        In Nov 2022 we (Professor Fenon and team) made a formal complaint to the Statistic Regulator about the multiple anomalies in the ONS mortality by vaccination status reports. On 20 Jan 2023 they final responded and they agreed with our major concern that 1) the ONS data was based on a biased sample that under-represented the proportion of unvaccinated in England; and 2) the ONS data could not be used to make any assertions about vaccine efficacy or safety.

    • Security

      • TechRadarLinux malware hit a new high in 2022 [Ed: Microsofters at TechRadar [1, 2] continue to spread anti-Linux messages for Microsoft. Companies that sell fake “security” (like VPN) realise that trash-talking Linux might put them in headlines of anti-Linux sites, giving them a “platform”.]
      • NeowinUbuntu 18.04 LTS and Linux Mint 19.x users should upgrade as support ends this April – Neowin

        For any Ubuntu or Linux Mint users out there still running Ubuntu 18.04 LTS or Linux Mint 19.x, it’s time to start upgrading to a newer version. This warning also goes out to users of other Ubuntu 18.04 LTS-based distributions, of which, there are many. Luckily, if your system runs Ubuntu 18.04 or distros based on this release, your system should also handle Ubuntu 22.04 LTS just fine and you’ll get newer packages.

      • Open Source Security (Audio Show)Episode 359 – The NOTAM outage and other legacy technology

        Josh and Kurt talk about the recent FAA NOTAM outage. Keeping legacy things running for long periods of time is really hard to do, this system is no different. It’s also really hard to upgrade many of these due to corner cases and institutional knowledge. There aren’t any great answers here, but we do ask a lot of questions about long running tech.

      • Privacy/Surveillance

        • New York TimesHow the Netherlands Is Taming Big Tech

          Dutch government and educational organizations have had remarkable success in compelling Big Tech companies to make major privacy changes. Their carrot-and-stick approach engages high-level Silicon Valley executives in months of highly technical discussions and then makes it worth their while by negotiating collective agreements allowing firms to sell their vetted tools to different government ministries and the nation’s schools. And the Dutch efforts to prod change could provide a playbook for other small nations wrangling with tech superpowers.

    • Defence/Aggression

      • ‘Canada’s Indo-Pacific Strategy’: From UN Peacekeeper to U.S. Sentinel State

        In a recent article in the Ottawa Hill-Times, journalist David Crane asked an important question: “Is Canada trying to match or outdo American hostility to China?”

        Canada’s Indo-Pacific Strategy (CIPS), announced in Vancouver recently by Liberal foreign affairs minister Mélanie Joly and other ministers, answers that question unequivocally:

        “China is an increasingly disruptive global power” begins the CIPS assessment of China.

        True enough if taken in isolation. Insidious, however, in the way it is used in this report.

        “We are not just going to engage the Indo-Pacific, we are going to lead,” stated Joly in her opening remarks. In this case, leadership seems to imply being tougher on China than anyone else. In its two-page assessment, the CIPS lists a litany of China’s alleged misdeeds and that, it would seem, is all there is to say. Not a word about its impressive economic achievements; nor that China is Canada’s second largest trading partner; nor about lifting 800 million people out of poverty, as recognized by the UN; not a peep about its development of solar power generation, documented in a Lancet study. Frankly, any teacher would be compelled to give a failing grade to the Canadian government’s assessment of China because of the obvious bias.

      • California’s Lost History of Lynching Latinos in L.A. More Than 100 Years Ago – Copyright L.A. TACO

        Not far from Union Station in downtown Los Angeles, a crowded line of cars take turns crossing.

        In front of the Metropolitan Detention Center, many sit in their cars, oblivious that Francisco Cota, a 15-year-old Latino accused of murdering a local shopkeeper, was dragged up the street, repeatedly stabbed, and lynched above the intersection over 160 years ago in the heart of El Pueblo de Los Angeles.

        A few blocks away at Temple and N Spring Street, at least eight more men were lynched from 1855 to 1863 in broad daylight among a large armed crowd. These lynchings took place where L.A.’s first courthouse and jail used to stand, now replaced with City Hall. Further down Temple at its intersection with Broadway, Miguel Lachenal was lynched by a violent mob in 1870—and historians believe over a dozen more lynchings occurred at this site. Not far is the Fort More Pioneer Memorial, which doesn’t mention the murders that happened at that exact place, with all but one of them lynchings of Latinos. There were also many other lynchings sites across Southern California in El Monte, Santa Ana, San Gabriel, San Pedro, Ventura, and San Luis Obispo, as well as in Northern California.

      • The Democrats are Now the War Party

        The Democratic Party has become the party of permanent war, fueling massive military spending which is hollowing out the country from the inside and flirting with with nuclear war.

    • Environment

      • Energy/Transportation

        • Michael West MediaAustralia: high industry concentration, high profit margins, says UBS – Michael West

          Competition regulator the ACCC has to sign off on ANZ’s takeover of Suncorp and and Brookfield’s bid for Origin Energy. What’s the scam?

          The scam is, as shown in the graphic above by investment bank UBS, Australia is a land of high prices – oligopolies with high industry concentration – yet both deals, if approved, will only deliver further monopoly power: one less bank and one bigger, more vertically integrated energy company.

          UBS analysis highlights four reasons Australia is good for foreign investors: fast population growth, high dividends, relative detachment from global economic cycle and a concentrated industry structure: “For consumers the outcome of this is bad, i.e. less choice and expensive prices. But for the businesses that are already here, this is great, i.e. less competition and higher margins”.

        • This government school in Himachal Pradesh runs completely on solar energy

          Government Model Boys Senior Secondary School in Nalagarh was established in 1856. Currently, there are about 800 students studying in this school, which includes boys from class 6-12.

          Jitender Kumar, a former physics teacher, is presently the principal of the school. Himachal Pradesh Council for Science Technology and Environment or HIMCOSTE supported the school in installing three solar units of 6 kilowatts capacity each.

          The total 18kW solar plant was installed in 40 days and cost about Rs 9.18 lakh. It was completely executed and funded by HIMCOSTE.

    • Finance

      • BBCGoogle parent Alphabet to cut 12,000 jobs

        Google’s parent company Alphabet will cut 12,000 jobs, in the latest staff redundancies to hit the tech industry.

        Google and Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai said he took “full responsibility” for the cuts, in an internal email.

      • Bryan LundukeThe Big Tech layoffs are just beginning – by Bryan Lunduke

        Earlier today, Microsoft announced that they will be laying off roughly 10,000 full time staff — which amounts to nearly 5% of all Microsoft employees.

        And this isn’t the first big layoff of the year… despite the year only being roughly 2 weeks old.

        Coinbase. Amazon. Cisco. Salesforce. It seems like almost every major Tech firm is starting 2023 by announcing layoffs (or had already announced staff cuts in the final days of 2022).

      • Michael West Media$1 Hospital Sell Off? – Michael West

        Forking out $1.2bn to build a hospital then flogging it for a dollar must surely make the NSW government the most hopeless dealmaker in Australian history. Then letting the buyers sell it – along with another 41 hospitals to the Cayman Islands – puts the federal government in a nearby league.

      • Michael West MediaByron Bay blue between “Airbnb mafia” and grassroots groups highlights costly housing crisis – Michael West

        Pandemic lockdowns crushed Airbnb, Stayz and other short-term rental operators but the market has bounced back sharply, creating tensions in popular tourist destinations between councils, community groups and well-heeled property owners. Callum Foote reports on the case of ritzy Byron Bay.

        A powerful lobby group for short-term rental providers, whose politically connected members oversee hundreds of properties, has nixed local council legislation and led to a community backlash and claims of profiteering at the expense of a housing supply and cost of living crisis.

        Short-term rentals offered by platforms such as Airbnb and Stayz spread quickly throughout Australia. They delivered easy choice and competition for accomodation for tourists but councils are now grappling with a backlash from residents who say they are in part responsible for a housing supply crisis and rising living costs in the regions.

      • Banks Recover only 13% of Rs 10 Lakh Crore Loans Written off in Last 5 Years

        Banks have recovered only 13% of a staggering amount of loans worth more than Rs 10 lakh crore loans written off in the last five years.

      • Michael West MediaFour Pillars to Four Punters? Will ANZ “do a Richard Branson”, licence its brand like Virgin? – Michael West

        ANZ is now free to pull a Richard Branson and licence its brand to sell ANZ-branded financial products through its non-banking and non-financially regulated wing after regulators approved its restructuring, reports Callum Foote.

  • Gemini* and Gopher

    • Personal

      • Advice for running a long campaign

        This might be another short three page section in the rules for Knives, a simple 2d6 rule system that I’d like to use at my table. The OGL mess is making me angry and I don’t think I want to invest too much energy into D&D-like games. Wizards of the Coast, shame on you.

      • Physics vs Crime

        Assistant: “Captain, we don’t know until we’ve done dusting tests whether the culprit is the neighbor coming through the window, or the butler coming from the hall.”

        Captain MW: “OMG! This is a remarkable paradox! The culprit is the neighbor and the butler at the same time!”

        Assistant: “Not really… but until the prints come back, we won’t know which it is; until then we can rule out people who weren’t even in town that day. So there’s still a lot of progress we can make on the case with what we’ve got so far, we can sta–”

        Captain MW: “You’re saying that those prints will collapse the wave function! Impossible! But don’t worry, Captain Many Worlds to the rescue! It’s clear that we are living in a field of overlapping simultaneous worlds and in one world the neighbor is a cruel and disgusting killer, and in the other the butler is a callous and brutal murderer. Both worlds obviously equally true! These people disgust me, assistant, they truly disgust me!”

        Assistant: “Uh, no, it’s one world, it’s just that we haven’t done the tests yet, once we–”

        Captain MW: “Truly a superposition of murder, assistant. Yes, yes. We’ve got two murderers on our hands. And I am a hero in every world!”

      • Experiment

        Hello, Midnight Pub. I’m a hacker!!!

      • Do you even compute, bro?
      • Do you even compute, bro?

        Personal computing, broadly construed in such a way that it includes smartphones and tablets and whatnot – basically, computing done on a single-user device which is the personal property of the person doing the computing – has never been bigger than it is today. The average person owns more personal computers, buys personal computers more frequently, and spends more time using a personal computer than even a lot of hardened computing enthusiasts would have ten years ago. This is not just more common and more socially accepted than it used to be, it is, in a weird and quite rapid reversal of social norms, socially *expected*, to the extent that now you’re a social misfit weirdo if you *aren’t* on a computing device all the time.

      • Realizing you already live pretty tiny

        I’ll peel back the curtain a bit and say I’ve never owned a home. I’m not sure I ever really _want_ to in this kind of economy. I am leery of going into that much debt (because that’s all a mortgage is and until yours is paid off that house is _not_ yours); however, I’m even more sensitive to the implication that I’m tied to that spot and am stuck with that commitment until I get it sold or paid off.

        Considering that for the last 4 or 5 years my wife and I have moved pretty regularly, seemingly at least once a year.. the absence of a sense of permanence has led me to have a mentality of “well does it matter if we do X modification to the dwelling or get Y appliance? We’re only here for (probably a year).” Not only that, it’s resulted in our used living space being pretty small.

    • Technical

      • A response to Solderpunk’s “Orphans of Netscape Part II”

        I discovered the smolnet sometime in either late 2019 or 2020; I frankly don’t remember when I first got my account at the Soviet at Circumlunar.Space. And, joke intended with the name, I kinda figured what I was getting into would wind up being a technically interesting but politically rotten orgy of people screaming about capitalism, as if sitting on a pubnix in the dark corners of the internet and yelling about change would actually enact it.

      • I still prefer email

        Although instant messaging has overtaken most of the communication with my friends and family, I still prefer plaintext email. I refused to use things like Whatsapp and so they contacted me through SMS. A few weeks ago I installed Signal on my phone, because this is the only messenger that I think can be trusted and is way more secure than SMS. Now I need to tediously convince them to use that instead. But I really like emails over all forms of digital communication.

      • Configuring Networking in rc.local

        Much of my Linux setup is totally bespoke and manual. GRUB config? I write it by hand, or I generate it from a template using a tiny program I wrote in CHICKEN Scheme named bootconf-update. The underlying principle is that if some part of the system shits the bed, I am better able to debug things because I can reason about my setup. Today I’m writing about how I do static network configuration.

      • Internet/Gemini

        • Track the Voyager Mission Status from Gemini

          With this app you can track the Voyager probes telemetry from your Gemini browser.

          Telemetry data is not 100% accurate but it does the job as you can view the distance from Earth or from the Sun.

        • Capsule of the day – 2023-01

          NOTA: Links are selected randomly from a list of known host from the lupa crawler[1]. The links are not manually curated and I’m not responsible of the content of these capsules. If some offensive capsules are listed here automatically, please alert me so I can manually remove them.

        • Capsule of the day – 2023-01-22

* Gemini (Primer) links can be opened using Gemini software. It’s like the World Wide Web but a lot lighter.

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  • email

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DecorWhat Else is New


  1. Sirius Finished

    Yesterday I was sent a letter approving my resignation from Sirius ‘Open Source’, two months after I had already announced that I was resigning with immediate effect; they sent an identical letter to my wife (this time, unlike before, they remembered to also change the names!!)



  2. The Collapse of Sirius in a Nutshell: How to Identify the Symptoms and Decide When to Leave

    Sirius is finished, but it's important to share the lessons learned with other people; there might be other "pretenders" out there and they need to be abandoned



  3. Links 03/02/2023: WINE 8.1 and RapidDisk 9.0.0

    Links for the day



  4. Links 02/02/2023: KDE Gear 22.12.2 and LibreOffice 7.5

    Links for the day



  5. Linux News or Marketing Platform?

    Ads everywhere: Phoronix puts them at the top, bottom, navigation bar, left, and right just to read some Microsoft junk (puff pieces about something that nobody other than Microsoft even uses); in addition there are pop-ups asking for consent to send visitors’ data to hundreds of data brokers



  6. Daily Links at Techrights Turn 15, Time to Give Them an Upgrade

    This year we have several 15-year anniversaries; one of them is Daily Links (it turned 15 earlier this week) and we've been working to improve these batches of links, making them a lot more extensive and somewhat better structured/clustered



  7. Back to Focusing on Unified Patent Court (UPC) Crimes and Illegal Patent Agenda, Including the EPO's

    The EPO's (European Patent Office, Europe's second-largest institution) violations of constitutions, laws and so on merit more coverage, seeing that what's left of the "media" not only fails to cover scandalous things but is actively cheering for criminals (in exchange for money)



  8. European Patent Office Staff Votes in Favour of Freedom of Association (97% of Voters in Support)

    The Central Staff Committee (CSC) at the EPO makes a strong case for António Campinos to stop breaking and law and actually start obeying court orders (he’s no better than Benoît Battistelli and he uses worse language already)



  9. Links 02/02/2023: Glibc 2.37 and Go 1.20

    Links for the day



  10. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, February 01, 2023

    IRC logs for Wednesday, February 01, 2023



  11. Links 01/02/2023: Security Problems, Unrest, and More

    Links for the day



  12. Links 01/02/2023: Stables Kernels and Upcoming COSMIC From System76

    Links for the day



  13. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, January 31, 2023

    IRC logs for Tuesday, January 31, 2023



  14. Links 31/01/2023: Catchup Again, Wayland in Xfce 4.20

    Links for the day



  15. Links 31/01/2023: elementary OS 7

    Links for the day



  16. Intimidation Against Nitrux Development Team Upsets the Community and Makes the Media Less Trustworthy

    Nitrux is being criticised for being “very unappealing”; but a look behind the scenes reveals an angry reviewer (habitual mouthpiece of the Linux Foundation and Linux foes) trying to intimidate Nitrux developers, who are unpaid volunteers rather than “corporate” developers



  17. Links 31/01/2023: GNOME 44 Wallpapers and Alpha

    Links for the day



  18. Free and Open Source Software Developers' European Meeting (FOSDEM) and KU Leuven Boosting Americans and Cancellers of the Father of Free Software

    The Free Software Foundation (FSF) and its founder, Richard M. Stallman (RMS), along with the SFLC one might add, have been under a siege by the trademark-abusing FSFE and SFC; Belgium helps legitimise the ‘fakes’



  19. Techrights in the Next 5 or 10 Years

    Now that I’m free from the shackles of a company (it deteriorated a lot after grabbing Gates Foundation money under an NDA) the site Techrights can flourish and become more active



  20. 60 Days of Articles About Sirius 'Open Source' and the Long Road Ahead

    The Sirius ‘Open Source’ series ended after 60 days (parts published every day except the day my SSD died completely and very suddenly); the video above explains what’s to come and what lessons can be learned from the 21-year collective experience (my wife and I; work periods combined) in a company that still claims, in vain, to be “Open Source”



  21. IRC Proceedings: Monday, January 30, 2023

    IRC logs for Monday, January 30, 2023



  22. Taking Techrights to the Next Level in 2023

    I've reached a state of "closure" when it comes to my employer (almost 12 years for me, 9+ years for my wife); expect Techrights to become more active than ever before and belatedly publish important articles, based on longstanding investigations that take a lot of effort



  23. The ISO Delusion: When the Employer Doesn’t Realise That Outsourcing Clients' Passwords to LassPass After Security Breaches Is a Terrible Idea

    The mentality or the general mindset at Sirius ‘Open Source’ was not compatible with that of security conscientiousness and it seemed abundantly clear that paper mills (e.g. ISO certification) cannot compensate for that



  24. Links 30/01/2023: Plasma Mobile 23.01 and GNU Taler 0.9.1

    Links for the day



  25. EPO Management Isn't Listening to Staff, It's Just Trying to Divide and Demoralise the Staff Instead

    “On 18 January 2023,” the staff representatives tell European Patent Office (EPO) colleagues, “the staff representation met with the administration in a Working Group on the project “Bringing Teams Together”. It was the first meeting since the departure of PD General Administration and the radical changes made to the project. We voiced the major concerns of staff, the organization chaos and unrest caused by the project among teams and made concrete proposals.”



  26. Links 30/01/2023: Coreboot 4.19 and Budgie 10.7

    Links for the day



  27. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, January 29, 2023

    IRC logs for Sunday, January 29, 2023



  28. [Meme] With Superheroes Like These...

    Ever since the new managers arrived the talent has fled the company that falsely credits itself with "Open Source"



  29. Not Tolerating Proprietary 'Bossware' in the Workplace (or at Home in Case of Work-From-Home)

    The company known as Sirius ‘Open Source’ generally rejected… Open Source. Today’s focus was the migration to Slack.



  30. The ISO Delusion: A Stack of Proprietary Junk (Slack) Failing Miserably

    When the company where I worked for nearly 12 years spoke of pragmatism it was merely making excuses to adopt proprietary software at the expense of already-working and functional Free software


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