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10.24.20

The Militarised Elephant in the Room Still Commands a Lot of Free Software Development

Posted in GNU/Linux, IBM, Marketing, Red Hat at 8:36 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

The Chairman of the Board of Red Hat at the time

Summary: We take a difficult (albeit in-depth and perfectly factual) look at IBM’s past and present; considering this is the company that controls Red Hat (which in turn controls many key projects in GNU/Linux) we need a better understanding of the real context, not PR fluff and marketing

IT IS what some people would call an “open secret” that Red Hat has US military ties. It’s “open” because everything the “open org” (or “community” known as Red Hat) does is supposedly “open” (even the code it outsources to proprietary GitHub), but it’s still somewhat of a secret because Red Hat markets itself as opposing violence and rudeness. Military ties sort of ruin or spoil that false narrative. Posturing is convenient when one studies marketing and goes working for Red Hat. We know for a fact that Red Hat hired some of its external marketing people to work ‘in-house’… because we spoke to them many times, or rather they spoke to us. Red Hat still spams us every week despite our repeated requests for them to stop [1, 2].

“Posturing is convenient when one studies marketing and goes working for Red Hat.”Compared to a lot of companies Red Hat isn’t sinister; in fact, it does a lot of perfectly ethical things. We’re not against ethics or against Red Hat, we’re just against lies, such as the lie that banning the word “master” would really resolve important issues.

Maybe after abolishing “master” they will also abolish “boss”? After all, many people are still mastered by their bosses and Boss (the brand) worked with and for the Nazis. It’s hardly even a secret. Here’s their ‘product line’ one century ago:

Boss Nazis

Should we replace the word “boss”? How about “primary” as a replacement? Or “leader”? Would that upset someone?

Anyway, nowadays Red Hat is owned and controlled by IBM, which is probably even more closely connected to the US military (and the literal Nazis) than Red Hat ever was.

“Compared to a lot of companies Red Hat isn’t sinister; in fact, it does a lot of perfectly ethical things.”This is where it gets even grimmer for Red Hat and its marketing slogans. Because under IBM the company once known as Red Hat lacks moral authority all across the board.

The “IBM Developer” site has just published this post entitled “Call for Code Daily: Fighting racial justice and climate change with tech” (part of the recent hogwash). Yes, IBM has the nerve to pretend to care about racial equality and the environment while working a lot for the Pentagon (the world’s largest polluter) and having started as a eugenics giant, helping crusaders for ethnic cleansing.

The founder of IBM was a racist. We know this based on associates of his. Has IBM improved a lot since? Maybe a bit, but not a lot.

Let’s start with IBM’s CEO who closed/sealed the Red Hat deal in 2018/2019 (depending on which milestone is counted in that very large financial transaction). That’s Ginni. Later reports attributed the decision of the takeover/acquisition to the current CEO, whose appointment came much later, with Red Hat’s CEO as president to his right (as in right-hand man).

“Should we replace the word “boss”? How about “primary”? Or “leader”? Would that upset someone?”Just to be clear, IBM’s legendary CEO Sam Palmisano said about Ginni’s (her nickname) selection as successor that it had “zero to do with progressive social policies.” We wonder if he’d say the same about Dr. Krishna. Nobody asked him. But Krishna’s technical skills are beyond doubt and we’ll come to that later.

The General who motors the war, GM, gave us Ginni, an Italian American (no connection to fascism) who came from a somewhat troubled family. She had a career in just two companies, GM and then IBM. Both were awarded/showered with medals from Nazi Germany for their collaboration and multitude of services (before the US entered the war). Later on she became the CEO of one.

GM’s connections to Nazi Germany is beyond the scope of this article, but it’s nothing extraordinarily Earth-shattering or new (by contrast, IBM just tried to evade responsibility and obstruct historians). There were press reports and books about it.

GM and Nazis

As CEO of IBM she managed to anger a lot of her staff (both past and present), which even prepared a massively-signed petition.

This kind of photo-ops isn’t helpful, is it?

Ginni and Trump

These ones are not particularly helpful, either.

Modi and IBM

Forget about companies profiting from war.

It doesn’t matter.

Who cares anyway?

The important thing is that Git repositories don’t have a “master” branch…

“The important thing is that Git repositories don’t have a “master” branch…”Right?

What is being accomplished anyway?

If women or ‘brown people’ (or ‘brown women’) get bombed by the Pentagon it’s helpful neither to feminism nor tolerance.

IBM has long been heavy(weight) on rhetoric and words, which rarely match the company’s actions, especially the more secret contracts all around the world. IBM is still helping autocrats oppress the population. Not secretively but the media doesn’t bother looking into these. Because it has been too busy preparing puff pieces in exchange for money. Like all those “Watson” marketing pieces thinly disguised as ‘journalism’…

Maybe one day Ginni too will earn a medal. Not for 24 consecutive quarters of revenue declines and increases in ties with ‘Orange Man’ (whom some compare to Hitler) but something about women’s accomplishments…

“IBM is still helping autocrats oppress the population.”For those who don’t know, there’s a military angle associated with Watson. The US military was to “adopt the Watson IoT services and a new Watson IoT Equipment Advisor solution. The latter analyses unstructured, structured and sensor data directly from military assets,” said this article. When “tech” companies view war as an opportunity to make even more money… or when a bomb falls (and then it explodes) and that means IBM can sell its clients more “Watson(TM)” — more money “from military assets…”

Remember that after IBM made a lot of money by helping Nazi Germany it made a lot of money selling the same to the US military (which had entered the war).

To the credit of IBM, its past two CEOs (former and current) were both technical geeks, unlike the criminal who ran Microsoft (whose arrests predate his Microsoft venture). At IBM one geek has been at the company for nearly 4 decades (with higher education sponsored by GM), whereAs the latter has been there for 3 decades, having earned a doctoral degree outside his home country. The latter (latest) comes from a military background/family, but it would be rather unfair to attribute that to himself, also unfair from a privacy standpoint (his father, however, was a high-profile military officer, not merely a troop).

“Whether Red Hat can lecture us all on ethics depends on whether we view Red Hat as still separate (it’s not; not any more than ATI is still separate from AMD).”IBM’s CEO since April of this year is an “army kid”, said The Economic Times. “Krishna, 57, [is] son of an Indian army officer,” wrote Times of India. It’s not a secret. It would be nice to see the Ph.D. thesis and some of the patents/scholarly articles he authored or edited. We wish to see the ethical aspects of these; he worked for the unit named after Watson himself (a Nazi medal recipient) and that unit does things like surveillance and military-grade stuff. We know that IBM is hoping to profit from fascistic methods mastered and ‘normalised’ by Mr. Modi, who poses for duo photos (during pandemic it’s harder to meet in person like Ginni did) with Dr. Krishna. Remember that India has nukes.

In conclusion, today’s Red Hat is connected to all sorts of burdensome stories and a really harsh history. Morality is misplaced in that context. It’s all about money and power. Whether Red Hat can lecture us all on ethics depends on whether we view Red Hat as still separate (it’s not; not any more than ATI is still separate from AMD).

Juve Patent’s Love of Patent Trolls and Their Misinformation

Posted in Deception, Europe, Patents at 6:35 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

As if “budget” (money) is the thing to worry about…

'Relocation would have minimal consequence on UPC budget'

Summary: The press ‘gutter’ known as Juve (basically propaganda disguised as ‘news’ since years ago) has gotten to the point where the publisher is just an extension of lawyers and liars

THE above is not satirical, only deeply flawed and false.

Juve trollIt’s also part of a worrying pattern we’ve taken stock of in recent years. Like IP Kat, the site changed its tune, in effect defecting to crooks who took over the EPO, turning it over to litigation fanatics (profiteers, not scientists) and patent trolls. Nowadays Juve is oftentimes a mere megaphone of Team UPC, relaying ‘useful’ lies as headlines (facts need not matter when your paying clients/subscribers like to hear and then disseminate those lies).

It’s almost 2021 (2 months from now). UPC is nowhere. Looks like JUVE is still a lobbying site (in English and in German). For the people who have lied again and again.

“BBC asserting patents,” a reader told us yesterday, quoting from Juve Patent’s LinkedIn (Microsoft) feed:

UPDATE: The next wave of SEP disputes has started in Germany.

Three members of Sisvel Group’s DVB-T2 Patent Pool have filed complaints against Chinese television manufacturer TCL Technology.

The BBC and Rai – Radiotelevisione Italiana have filed before the Regional Court Düsseldorf, while LG filed the infringement claim at the Munich Regional Court.

A first hearing in the latter case is expected for March 2021.

At the centre of the dispute is the next generation of broadcasting digital television on terrestrial networks.

With Juve lobbying for the UPC, imagine how much worse it can get. Maybe time to rename or rebrand as “Juve Patent Troll”. They still routinely call patent extortion “FRAND” (misnomer) as if blackmail is “fair”, “reasonable” and “non-discriminatory”…

Juve is always happy to quote patent lawyers, but never Germans… unless they’re German lawyers. This helps perpetuate their microcosm delusions. No licence to sue? Then your voice does not count and does not even exist.

It’s always a problem when the press becomes a force of occupation against public interests.

10.23.20

Embrace, Extend, and Extensions: Two New Reasons to Delete GitHub, Which Microsoft Ruined for Everyone (Except the Copyright Cartel and Other Censors)

Posted in Microsoft at 5:22 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Recent: GitHub’s Nat Friedman Defended Proprietary Software at Novell, So Why Not at Microsoft?

Summary: GitHub is being turned into a garbage dump with malicious masters (or monsters, or mobsters); many people are denied access for using the ‘wrong’ browser and developers/projects are being censored (not for doing anything wrong or illegal, either)

THE following couple of reasons were brought up in IRC this week, the latter as recently as minutes ago. We hope these are self-explanatory (in this form):

GitHub extensions

GitHub DMCA

The reasons to #DeleteGitHub grow by the day; we’re told that quite a few projects already migrate away from GitHub (Microsoft) for the above reasons. Let’s help this movement gain momentum.

[Meme] When EPO Staff Claims to be ‘Ill’ or ‘Sick’… During a Pandemic’s European Peak

Posted in Europe, Humour, Patents at 5:00 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Feeling unwell? Open up the door… or else.

EPO Checking Up on Ill Staff

Summary: Gotta check and verify that those ‘lazy’ EPO examiners aren’t just faking being ill (in order to not meet “production” targets)

The EPO Has Relegated or Lowered Itself to Extremely Poor Standards

Posted in Europe, Patents at 4:48 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

EPO: one day it hopes to become a 5-star office again

EPO stars

Summary: Today’s EPO continues to reaffirm the image of global weakness; having failed to improve the working conditions and quality of the work (its actions did the exact opposite), it’s nowadays begging China to send over lots of workload irrespective of quality or merit and it is outsourcing the functions of the Office to the United States

THE ambitious-but-unqualified management of the corrupt EPO (led by Benoît Battistelli and then his mate, António Campinos) not only exploits COVID to do illegal things (of which we’ve lost count). Judging by its latest couple of “press releases” [1-2] (or so-called ‘news’ as the EPO’s site puts it), it’s liaising more and more with China while establishing whitewashing groups to not only pretend quality is high (it’s not; the opposite is true) but that the illegal practices are in compliance with the law. So many comparisons can be made/drawn between today’s EPO and CPC. Greenwashing included (it’s still being floated in ‘the news’… which is reducible to EPO press releases). See [3-5] for the template-based ‘news’ coverage about the EPO and China’s office. Do journalists still exist (to actually investigate and fact-check things, including background reading)?

Just keep mentioning “quality” (as if people don’t really know what that word means; see the new quote at the bottom/on the right).

EPO quality quoteThe world’s biggest patent aggressors push ahead [6-7] in Germany with lousy software patents that should never have been granted.

Patents on genetics are still on the agenda [8], as well as other dubious patents [9], whose scope goes as far as Turkey [10] (we’re being reminded by IAM).

“It’s hard to find any media scrutiny of the EPO any longer; almost all coverage is just based (in the template sense) on EPO press releases, promoted actively by the EPO’s press team (friends of Campinos).”A couple of decades ago Europe stood out as a leader in this space (the USPTO had noticeable issues, ranging from process to scope). Now it’s little but a stooge of CPC, looking for opportunities by lowering the patent bar. This is saddening as it harms Europe’s competitiveness.

We’re still surveying the news and closely watching EPO affairs. To the best of our ability anyway (insiders don’t say as much as they did years ago).

EPO insiders, please consider trickling out to us more information. The more we know, the more EPO staff will know. It’s hard to find any media scrutiny of the EPO any longer; almost all coverage is just based (in the template sense) on EPO press releases, promoted actively by the EPO’s press team (friends of Campinos). COVID killed whatever was left of media in this space.

Remember the days IP Kat was a hard-hitting site with decent comments about the EPO? Nowadays that blog is full of ads for the EPO and comments that bring up EPO corruption get zapped (never to appear). Because IP Kat isn’t run by the same people (since years ago)… we used to exchange amicable E-mails with the ‘Kats’, but today’s ‘Kats’ treat us like an enemy (and Campinos like an ally).

Related/contextual items from the news:

  1. Meeting of the SACEPO Working Party on Rules (warning: epo.org link)

    User representatives were informed that more than 1 200 oral proceedings have been held by VICO so far this year, and that many users have by now had the opportunity to test and discover the advantages of oral proceedings by VICO – such as reduced costs, air travel and risk of infection, as well as the level playing field VICOs create for practitioners irrespective of their location. Suggestions relating to virtual “break-out rooms” and a shared base for document exchange during oral proceedings were discussed, as well as issues relating to recordings. SACEPO members were also invited to provide feedback on a proposal to amend EPC rules to address certain specific aspects of the taking of evidence by VICO.

  2. Joint communiqué EPO-CNIPA pilot starts on 01 December, 2020 (warning: epo.org link)

    Chinese patent applicants will be able to designate EPO as ISA, giving them an additional option for their international search

    A two‑year pilot between the European Patent Office (EPO) and the China National Intellectual Property Administration (CNIPA) will enable nationals and residents of the People’s Republic of China to select the EPO as their International Searching Authority (ISA) for applications filed in English under the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT).

    [...]

    PCT applicants who are nationals or residents of the People’s Republic of China and whose international search was performed by the EPO as ISA will also be able to file a request for international preliminary examination with the EPO. They should pay the corresponding fee directly to the EPO, pursuant to PCT Chapter II.

    The EPO establishes international search reports (ISRs) and written opinions (WO/ISAs) which provide an applicant with a clear evaluation of their invention’s patentability and so with a solid basis for taking timely and informed decisions as to whether or not to enter the various national/regional phases under the PCT, in particular the European phase. In addition, with an ISR and a WO/ISA from the EPO, Chinese applicants wishing to accelerate the prosecution of their application can enter the European phase earlier, request early processing and have their file examined without a supplementary European search.

  3. Chinese Applicants Will Soon be Able to Select the European Patent Office as Search Authority in PCT Applications

    ISA for there PCT applications. The pilot, which starts on December, 1, 2020, will be limited to a total of 2,500 applications in the first 12 months and 3,000 applications in the second 12 months.

    [...]

    It is not clear what the uptake of this program will be among Chinese applicants. In addition to the language requirement, the EPO international search fee is currently 1,775 Euros (~$2,100 USD) versus only 2,100 RMB (~$315) for the CNIPA international search fee. Further, these fees must be paid directly to the EPO in Euros, which can be hard for Chinese applicants due to restrictions on currency transfers overseas. Also, as Chinese applicants often rely on Chinese government support for PCT applications, which is capped, Chinese applicants may not be able to afford to select the EPO as ISA. For example, Shanghai provides an extra 10,000 RMB (~$1,500 USD) subsidy for each granted PCT national phase entry patent application (versus filing via Paris Convention).

  4. China, Europe to start pilot program on international patent search

    The China National Intellectual Property Administration (CNIPA) and the European Patent Office (EPO) will launch a two-year pilot program that enables Chinese patent applicants to designate the EPO as an additional option for international searches, sources with the CNIPA said.

    The program, which will start on December 1, will be open to applicants filing with either the CNIPA or the World Intellectual Property Organization’s International Bureau as the receiving office. Chinese nationals and residents can select the EPO as their international searching authority for their applications filed in English under the Patent Cooperation Treaty.

    [...]

    During a transitional phase, applicants filing their international applications with the CNIPA as the receiving office and choosing the EPO for the international search will be required to pay the international search fee directly to the EPO in euros, read the communique.

  5. China, Europe To Start Pilot Program On International Patent Search

    The pilot program is one of the outcomes of the comprehensive strategic partnership between the two intellectual property (IP) offices and will help Chinese applicants to acquire IP protection in Europe, said Shen Changyu, head of the CNIPA.

  6. Conversant wins Germany-wide standard-essential patent injunction against Daimler in Munich: third court loss for Daimler in as many months

    PCT applicants who are nationals or residents of the People’s Republic of China and whose international search was performed by the EPO as ISA will also be able to file a request for international preliminary examination with the EPO. They should pay the corresponding fee directly to the EPO, pursuant to PCT Chapter II.

    The EPO establishes international search reports (ISRs) and written opinions (WO/ISAs) which provide an applicant with a clear evaluation of their invention’s patentability and so with a solid basis for taking timely and informed decisions as to whether or not to enter the various national/regional phases under the PCT, in particular the European phase. In addition, with an ISR and a WO/ISA from the EPO, Chinese applicants wishing to accelerate the prosecution of their application can enter the European phase earlier, request early processing and have their file examined without a supplementary European search.

  7. This week in IP: Brexit threatens designs, Ferrari wins parts battle, Nokia enforces injunction

    Nokia announced on Tuesday, October 20, that it would pay a collateral of €3.25 million ($3.84 million) to enforce its injunction against Chinese company Lenovo in Germany for infringing its video-compression technology patents.

    The Finnish telecoms company won the injunction from the Munich Regional Court on September 30 after it ruled that the defendant, a Chinese computer firm, was an unwilling licensee because its engagement in licence negotiations was insufficient.

    The injunction will stop the sales of Lenovo PCs, laptops and tablets that use Nokia’s standardised H264 decoding or encoding functionalities in Germany, but will not affect already-purchased products.

    “Legal action is never our preferred option, but Lenovo have been unwilling to enter into discussions, despite a clear judgment confirming their unauthorised use of Nokia’s patented technology,” said a Nokia spokesperson.

    “Lenovo can easily resolve this matter by accepting their responsibilities and agreeing a licence on fair terms. Our door is open for Lenovo to resolve the matter through good-faith negotiation.”

    Nokia has active cases against Lenovo in the US, Brazil and India. The company has been on a winning streak this year, having won the lawsuit it filed against Daimler in Mannheim, and the case brought against it and Avanci in the Northern District of Texas.

  8. Onxeo Receives Notice of Intent to Grant a New Patent Enhancing the Protection in Europe of AsiDNA™ Combined with PARP Inhibitors

    Onxeo S.A. (Euronext Paris, NASDAQ Copenhagen: ONXEO), hereafter “Onxeo” or “the Company”, a clinical-stage biotechnology company specializing in the development of innovative drugs targeting tumor DNA Damage response (DDR), in particular against rare or resistant cancers, today announced that it has received from the European Patent Office (EPO) a notice of intent to grant a patent which strengthens the protection in Europe of AsiDNA™, its first-in-class inhibitor of tumor DNA repair in combination with PARP inhibitors (PARPi). This patent protects in particular the method of use of AsiDNA™ in combination with PARP inhibitors in the treatment of certain cancers for which the DNA repair pathway via homologous recombination (HR) is not impaired or deficient, these HR-proficient cancers being mostly insensitive to treatment with PARP inhibitors.

  9. Amgen Cholesterol IP Suit Restarts As EPO Decision Looms
  10. Turkey

    Turkish courts and judges are not bound by decisions of foreign courts. Nevertheless, since Turkey is a party to the EPC, the decisions of the EPO may influence the Turkish courts to some extent, especially if the disputed patent is a European patent validation. Having said that, it is at the discretion of the IP court to suspend the infringement action in cases where there is a post-grant opposition proceeding before the EPO.

Links 23/10/2020: Turing Pi 2, GNU Parallel 20201022

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

  • GNU/Linux

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • Open-source Linux PC Stuffs 4 Quadros Into Mid-Tower Case | Tom’s Hardware

        Are you looking for a new PC build project that could cost as much as a new car? Do you have four RTX 3090s, or even Nvidia Quadros, kicking around with a Threadripper CPU? Or are you just able to spend up to $45,000 on someone who does building a deep-learning PC for you? Then System 76’s new Thelio Mega, which packs corporate power into a form factor that would be at home in your well, home, is for you.

        System 76 is a bit of an oddity in the extreme high-end PC world. The company is a staunch advocate of open-source and the right to repair, meaning that all of their computers are actually free for you to build yourself, if you can understand their freely downloadable schematics and have all the right parts and tools. They also all pack Linux as their OS, because of course that’s how System 76 rolls. But if you don’t have the confidence or knowhow to build one of their systems from just its schematics, or just can’t get your hand on parts like RTX 3000 series cards, you can also pay the company to build your new system for you.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

    • Kernel Space

      • Laptop Touchpad Improvements, New Joystick Driver For Linux 5.10 – Phoronix

        The Linux 5.10 merge window is closing this weekend but there still is new code landing for this last complete kernel series of 2020.

        The input subsystem updates were sent in on Friday morning and include some new drivers and other work. As previously reported, there is better support for newer Synaptics laptop touchpads with this kernel. There is Synaptics RMI4 F3A support for buttons on newer touchpads helping the likes of the ThinkPad X1 Extreme Gen1 and P1 Gen2. There is also InterTouch now enabled for the ThinkPad P1/X1E Gen2 devices.

      • Sensor Fusion Hub Driver For AMD Laptops With Gyroscopes Is Coming To Linux 5.11 – LinuxReviews

        It’s been a long and hard road to acceptance for AMD’s Sensor Fusion Hub Linux driver. The first revision was submitted to the Linux kernel Mailing List in January 2020. It took eight revisions and a lot of effort before Jiří Kosina finally accepted it into the hid.git#for-5.11 tree, almost guaranteeing that it will become a part of Linux 5.11.

        [...]

        Sandeep Singh didn’t give up. He submitted a fourth revision with fingers crossed on February 12th, 2020. Intel’s Linux driver engineer Andy Shevchenko rejected it on the grounds that it had long list of issues and concluded that it would need “a bit of work”.

        Sandeep Singh sent a firth revision to the Linux Kernel Mailing List on the May 29th. Intel’s Andy Shevchenko several additional objections and Sandeep Singh had to go back to the drawing-board.

      • AMD SFH Driver To Land With Linux 5.11 For Better Ryzen Laptop Handling In 2021 – Phoronix

        It was sadly too late for squeezing into the current Linux 5.10 merge window but it looks like for Linux 5.11 in early 2021 the AMD Sensor Fusion Hub “SFH” driver will make its long awaited debut.

        The AMD SFH driver is similar to the long-standing Intel ISH driver for supporting the sensor hub on modern laptops. The AMD SFH support is needed for laptops bearing gyroscopic sensors and other capabilities.

        Back in January AMD finally published the Sensor Fusion Hub Linux driver for supporting the Ryzen laptops of recent years. With time the driver was revised to address various feedback but wasn’t quick to get picked up for mainline and at times several weeks passing between code revisions.

      • Intel Sends Linux Kernel Patches For VRR / Adaptive-Sync Enablement – Phoronix

        For months now Intel’s open-source Linux driver stack has been preparing for VRR support with Gen11/Gen12 graphics. We’ve seen user-space patches by Intel around VRR while now they are finally sending out their key Linux kernel driver patches with the i915 DRM code.

        This kernel code is what’s needed for actually enabling DisplayPort 1.4 Adaptive-Sync / Variable Refresh Rate on capable Intel graphics hardware with capable displays. The 11 patches add just under 300 lines of new code to their kernel driver in making the necessary VRR preparations and handling for this display feature.

      • Graphics Stack

        • Integer Scaling To Come With Linux 5.11 For Intel Graphics Driver – Phoronix

          Going back more than a year there have been Intel “i915″ kernel graphics driver patches implementing integer mode scaling support while finally for Linux 5.11 in early 2021 the support will have landed.

          Intel added integer mode scaling to their Windows graphics driver back in 2019 to provide better clarity when upscaling games (particularly pixel art type content) and other software. The Linux patches materialized in September 2019 for nearest-neighbor integer mode scaling and then seemingly forgotten about. The capability works with Gen11 / Ice Lake and newer.

        • Linux Support for Variable Refresh Rates On Gen12+ Intel GPUs Is On The Way – LinuxReviews

          Intel developer Manasi Navare has submitted a series of patches for the Linux kernel that brings support for variable refresh rates on Intel’s latest graphics chips to the Linux kernels i915 driver. The feature is only enabled on Tiger Lake, Sapphire Rapids and newer Intel graphics chips.

          [...]

          You do not need a special “Freesync” monitor to use adaptive vertical synchronization, Freesync is just a marketing term used by AMD. The DisplayPort specification has included variable refresh rate (VRR) as an option feature since DP 1.4 and there are many monitors with support for it that are not marketed as “Freesync” or “gaming” monitors. Monitors that are marketed as “Freesync” support the standard DisplayPort VRR protocol so you don’t need to use a AMD graphics card to get the benefits of a Freesync monitor. You will soon be able to use one of the very latest Intel CPU’s with integrated graphics or one of Intel’s upcoming dedicated graphics cards with Freesync monitors on Linux.

    • Benchmarks

      • Intel Xe Graphics’ Incredible Performance Uplift From OpenCL To oneAPI Level Zero To Vulkan

        Since picking up the Dell XPS 13 9310 for delivering Tiger Lake Linux benchmarks, most of the focus so far has been about the overall processor performance while in this article is our first deep dive into the Gen12 Xe Graphics performance on Linux with Intel’s fully open-source graphics and compute stack. Here is a look at how the Tiger Lake Xe Graphics performance is with the Core i7-1165G7 ranging from OpenGL and Vulkan graphics tests to OpenCL, oneAPI Level Zero, and Vulkan compute tests.

    • Applications

      • The Top 5 Podcast Players for Ubuntu

        Because life can be boring at times, people are often on a search for novelty. Luckily, with each passing year, many new sources of entertainment are produced. Several decades ago, television changed how people perceive entertainment: with a television, a person could be transported to a different place without ever leaving home. Since then, entertainment has been evolve quickly, with a rapidly increasing number of channels and expansion in types of programming that eventually culminated in video streaming services like Netflix and Hulu.
        The entertainment industry has underwent many changes since the television became popularized, and at present, one format in particular has been rising in popularity: the podcast.

        You can listen to a podcast while you cook, clean, or work; they can make your daily commute fly by, or help to pass the few minutes you have to spare here and there: there is a podcast for every person, every situation, and every time frame. Furthermore, and perhaps most importantly, there is a podcast that covers every topic, so whether you are interested in current events, science or science fiction, there is a podcast out there for you. That is why the podcast is quickly becoming a popular form of entertainment.

        In this article, we will discuss the top five podcast players available for Ubuntu 20.04.

      • Linux Candy: Hollywood – fill your console with Hollywood melodrama technobabble

        Linux Candy is a series of articles covering interesting eye candy software. We only feature open source software in this series.

        Some of the programs in this series are purely cosmetic, frivolous pieces of fun. Candy at their finest. But we also include some programs that aren’t purely decorative.

        There’s a diverse range of programs included in this series. Programs such as eDEX-UI and Variety are actually highly practical programs. ASCIIQuarium has soothing and relaxing qualities for your desktop. Other programs included in this series (such as lolcat, cacafire) are included purely for their decorative qualities. And then there’s some really fun software that just raises a smile or two.

        Hollywood is a 102 line script that occupies your console with tech geekery.

      • Is Albert going to be your loyal app assistant?

        A light comic book repartee, right there, ha ha. So. Let’s say you have a Linux desktop. What’s the one thing missing? Apart from all the other things missing? Well, it’s an integrated application launcher. Now, what I just said is incorrect. Because if you’re using the Plasma desktop environment, you have Krunner, and you’re all set like. Unity also has some elements of this goodness available.

        If you’re using other desktop environments, then there’s isn’t such functionality in the operating system really. And so Dedo reviews Ulauncher. Dedo gets emails. Emails say Dedo wrong. Dedo should review Albert. Dedo ponders and decides to blaze forth. After all, nailing down the formula for an omnipotent and actually useful desktop assistant is very hard. Often, it’s a fad, a gimmick, an extra, but never something you embrace with heart and loin. Maychance Albert will convince us otherwise. To the cave.

        [...]

        Going into this experiment, I have to say I didn’t expect to be mindblown. Because I know how difficult it is to create a really useful helper software. Even the mega-giants out there, with their multi-billion-dollar budgets can’t do it right. But even if we keep our goal modest, Linux desktop wise, Krunner remains well ahead of the game, both in functionality and system integration.

        Albert is okay. It works reasonably well, and it’s no slouch. But the magic is getting the advanced functionality right. The basics are too trivial – and too overdone to matter. Also, I find the lack of a simple extensions management option tiring. I don’t want to go about the net, manually downloading Python scripts and such. I don’t have the time or the mental strength to commit to something like that, especially since the benefits aren’t that big. The, there were also actual bugs and issues – like the hotkey binding, Firefox bookmarks and no built-in translation. For now, Albert is worth testing and playing with, but I don’t see it becoming an indispensable household software any time soon.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • Oracle Linux 8 Password Aging and Su
      • Oracle Linux 8 System Monitoring iostat utility
      • Toggling Line Numbers On/Off in the vi Text Editor – Linux Hint

        The line numbers shown in a text editor can greatly enhance a programmer’s experience writing and reading code. There are several text editors available for the Linux operating system, including the popular and powerful vi text editor, and these editors can be used to create and modify various file types.
        The vi editor provides three different types of line numbers: absolute, relative, and a hybrid combining features of absolute and relative. In this article, we will discuss method that can be used to change the line number type shown in the vi text editor.

        Note: Linux Mint 20 is used to demonstrate all the methods discussed below.

      • How to Configure Network Static IP Address on RHEL/CentOS 8/7

        The scope of this tutorial is to explain how we can edit and make changes to Network Configurations on RHEL/CentOS 8/7 from the command line only, and, more specifically how we can set up a Static IP address on network interfaces using system network-scripts, which is a must be configured to serve Internet-facing network services, and how to configure or change RHEL/CentOS system hostname.

      • Ansible file Module – Tutorial and Examples – LinuxBuz

        Ansible file module is used to deal with the files, directories, and symlinks. You can create or remove files, symlinks or directories on the remote hosts using the Ansible file module. It is also used to change the file ownership, group and permissions.

        Ansible file module performs all tasks on the remote hosts. So before changing the ownership and permissions of the files and directories, relevant user and group must exist on the remote hosts. Otherwise, playbook execution will fail. In this case, you should always check the user or group’s existence on the remote hosts then change the ownership or permissions.

      • Linux interface analytics on-demand with iftop | Enable Sysadmin

        Got network bandwidth? Are you sure? Find out with iftop.

      • GCP Quickstart Guide for OpenShift OKD – A Random Walk Down Tech Street

        I recently did a blog post series. showing how to get started with OpenShift OKD on Fedora CoreOS for DigitalOcean. For that series I wrote a script to do most of the heavy lifting because DigitalOcean isn’t a native supported platform by the OpenShift installer.
        Today I’ll show off how to get started in GCP, which is supported natively by the OpenShift installer. This makes it much easier to get started because most of the heavy lifting (including infrastructure bringup) is done by the installer itself.
        As always, when looking for more information in addition to what I’m showing here today refer to the existing documentation.

      • How to Install Jenkins Automation Server with Apache on Ubuntu 20.04

        Jenkins is a free and open-source automation server that helps developers to build, test, and deploy their software. It is based on Java and provides over 1700 plugins that help to automate the repetitive tasks involved in the software development process. It supports multiple operating systems such as Windows, Mac OS X and Linux, and can easily be distributed across multiple machines.

      • How to install MySQL server on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS Linux – nixCraft

        Explains how to install and set up Oracle MySQL server 8.x on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS Linux, including new users and databases for your project.

      • How To Create A Custom Ubuntu Live ISO Image With Cubic – OSTechNix

        In this guide, we are going to learn what is Cubic and how to create a custom Ubuntu live ISO image with Cubic application.

      • Enabling new hardware on Raspberry Pi with Device Tree Overlays – Bootlin’s blog

        We recently had the chance to work on a customer project that involved the RaspberryPi Compute Module 3, with custom peripherals attached: a Microchip WILC1000 WiFi chip connected on SDIO, and a SGTL5000 audio codec connected over I2S/I2C. We take this opportunity to share some insights on how to introduce new hardware support on RaspberryPi platforms, by taking advantage of the Raspberry Pi specific Device Tree overlay mechanism.

      • How to Use Sudo Command in Linux? – Linux Hint

        Among the different concepts of an operating system, the most crucial one is access control, which specifies the level of access that is granted to each user of that operating system. The access control policies ensure that no user is allowed to perform those activities for which he has not been granted any privileges. The two most common types of users in any operating system are the root user (has administrative level privileges) and the guest user (only has a limited set of privileges).

      • Settings to Try with Firefox

        There are various stories about Firefox not respecting user privacy. Some suggest certain settings to reduce the information Firefox sends out (such as this one from Mozilla). Over time, I have collected a lot of them into a user.js file. For those who do not know, a user.js file may be dropped into a Firefox profile directory as a convenient way to force certain settings every time Firefox starts up. This can reset changes made by the user during a previous session, but is also a convenient way to initialize desired settings in a fresh profile.

        In an IRC discussion, Martyb suggested I share the settings I have collected. Below is a sample user.js that I sometimes use as a template for disabling many potential privacy and/or security holes in Firefox. Some, like HTML pings, are probably features that most privacy-minded individuals do not want (and may not have even known about). Others, like disabling cookies and/or javascript, can break how sites work (sometimes, amusingly, they only break the advertisements). Others, like disabling tracker protection, are double-edged in that disabling them exposes you to being tracked by known trackers, while enabling them might cause Firefox to phone home to get updated lists of known trackers. The comments in the user.js point out some, but definitely not all, of the potential pitfalls. The settings are definitely not set the way everybody should use them, but having them listed out at least provides a convenient starting point. I highly recommend against dropping them directly into your main Firefox profile, as they may undo changes you have made for yourself. Instead, either try them in a fresh profile and copy over things that work for you, or research the settings and only copy over the ones you want that will not break your browser.

      • How To check LXD container BTRFS disk usage on Linux

        Find LXD container disk size and how much space they are using when storage back end set to BTRFS.

      • How to Install Perl Modules on Debian Linux? – Linux Hint

        Perl is a very popular high-level programming language. It is a scripting language, in fact, whose syntax resembles closely with C and C++. A Perl module is defined as a collection of related functions. It is very much similar to the concept of libraries is C++ and Java. This means that if you intend to run a function in Perl, you must have the respective module for that function installed on your system. That is why in this article, we will be learning the method of installing Perl modules on Debian 10.

      • How to Format a Drive in Linux – Linux Hint

        Formatting a drive is necessary whenever you are trying to erase data on a drive or partition or to create a new partition. Before formatting a partition or drive, it is strongly recommended to make sure that there is nothing important there, as formatting may erase the data for good.

      • How to Install and Configure OpenVPN Server in CentOS 8/7

        In this article, we will explain how to set up a VPN server using OpenVPN with two remote clients (a Linux box and a Windows machine) on an RHEL/CentOS 8/7 box.

      • How to set up a Kubernetes cluster in Ubuntu 20.04 > Tux-Techie

        In this tutorial, we are going to set up a Kubernetes cluster with two Ubuntu 20.04 servers. Learn how to set up for master and worker nodes.

      • How to find Linux distribution name and Version? – Linux Hint

        While you are working on new Linux distribution, you might not know which Linux version is installed on your system. Sometimes, you need to meet a few system requirements while running an application on your system. However, different ways are available to check the Version of installed Linux distribution. Linux Mint 20 is the most growing Linux distribution and has a number of available graphical user interfaces that may vary from one user to the other. Hence, each user may also have a different running procedure. For this purpose, the recommended solution is to access and open the terminal command-line application.

      • How To Safely Remove PPA Repositories in Ubuntu – Linux Hint

        PPA is popularly known as Personal Package Archives, it provide Ubuntu users to get new and updated software regularly. Some are officials and provided by Ubuntu developers.

      • How to Change or Reset Root Password in Linux – Linux Hint

        If you have not logged in as a root user for a long time and have not saved the login information anywhere, there is a chance that you may lose access to the credentials for your system. It is not an unusual occurrence, but rather, a common issue, which most Linux users have probably encountered before. If this happens, you can easily change or reset the password via the command-line or the GUI (Graphical User Interface).

        But what do you do if the root password must be modified or reset?

        This article shows you how to change the root password for your Linux Mint 20 system via three different methods.

      • Use mobile numbers for user authentication in Keycloak – Red Hat Developer

        Use Keycloak’s authentication service provider interface to develop a custom MobileAuthenticator class that you can run in your JBoss EAP container.

      • How to List All Users in a Linux System – Linux Hint

        At any given time, multiple users can operate a single computer system. However, with such shared systems, a system administrator must take the proper security measures so that one user cannot breach the privacy of another by, for example, applying an access control mechanism that specifies the privileges of each user.

        At times, a change in user privileges might be necessary. For example, a user might need his or her privileges extended for a certain task, or a ability of a certain user to access the system may have to be revoked entirely. In such scenarios, it is important for the system administrator to have complete knowledge of all users of the system.

        In this article, we explore the methods used to list the users of a Linux system. Both graphical user interface (GUI)-based methods and command line interface (CLI)-based methods can be used for this task; however, this article focuses on four terminal-based methods.

      • iSH Shell app lets you locally run a Linux shell environment on iPhone and iPad – 9to5Mac

        If you always wanted to have a fully functional Terminal on your iPhone or iPad, now you can. Today the new iSH Shell app was officially released on the App Store to let iOS users locally interact with a Linux shell environment.

        The iSH project started a few months ago with a beta app, but now the developer was able to release it on the App Store for everyone. iSH Shell runs on usermode x86 emulation, and it uses syscall translation so it can run locally on iOS.

      • How to Merge PDF Files on the Command Line? – Linux Hint

        PDF is the most frequently used file format all over the world. This file format is not only used for personal documents but also for professional documents. At times, you might have multiple inter-related PDF files, and you wish to integrate them all as a single PDF file. Therefore, today we will be explaining to you the different methods of merging PDF files on the command line.

      • Making Docker Work in Your Computer Infrastructure | Mind Matters

        By itself, Docker makes great use of filesystem space. Because each container only holds the changes from the images, a little bit of image bloat doesn’t directly impact the server adversely. However, this doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t worry about bloat at all. Not only should we not waste space without reason, images that are too big cause other problems that you need to be aware of.

        The most important consideration is attack surface. Every program that you have on your image is a potential hole for a hacker to exploit. Keeping unneeded software off of your container is the easiest first step to maintaining secure containers.

        However, in more general terms, everything on your container will wind up needing maintenance at some point. The more software you have installed, the more maintenance you will be subject to. You might think, “If I don’t use it, how does it cause maintenance issues?” Well, most software is written by a software team, not just a single individual. I have noticed that, if something is available to use, some member of the team will eventually find an excuse to use it. So, the more software that you leave on your container, the more tools your team will eventually make use of. Additionally, those team members may not even remember to document which operating system tools they are using. Therefore, it is best to start off with the most minimal set of tools you can, and then only add when absolutely necessary. Then your team will think twice before adding something, and— more importantly—it will be added explicitly to your Dockerfile, which makes it easier to spot.

      • What is LVM (Logical Volume Management), and what are its Benefits? – Linux Hint

        Logical Volume Management or LVM is a framework of the Linux operating system that has been introduced for the easier management of physical storage devices. The concept of logical volume management is very much similar to the concept of virtualization, i.e. you can create as many virtual storage volumes on top of a single storage device as you want. The logical storage volumes thus created can be expanded or shrunk according to your growing or reducing storage needs.

      • How to Search for Files on Linux from the Command Line? – Linux Hint

        In any computer system, you have got tons of different files. Some of them are system files that are there since the very beginning, whereas some of them are user files that you create on your own as per your needs. However, when there is a large bulk of files, and you only wish to search for a particular file or set of files for any specific task, then the process of looking for that file or files manually can be extremely tedious as you have to go to each and every directory in search of that file or files that you need. And even then, it is not assured that you will be effectively able to find all those files.

        Thankfully, our operating systems these days are efficient enough that they present us with different ways in which we can automate this task and make it more speedy. Like other operating systems, Linux also enables us to search for files automatically via terminal commands. Therefore, today, our discussion will revolve around exploring the different methods of searching for files on Linux from the command line.

    • Games

      • Ahoy, Me Hearties! Civilization VI’s free Pirates game mode is out now | GamingOnLinux

        Fancy sailing the seas and becoming king of the pirates? We’re not talking about One Piece but Civilization VI with the latest major free update out now.

        Inspired by the classic Sid Meier’s Pirates!, this freshly included game mode sees 1-4 players take on the role of a Pirate King. Across 60 turns, each player will go around pillaging cities, ships, build a big fleet, collect Relics to power up and attempt to become the true king. You lose by having nothing left, you win by having the most points at the end. It totally changes the gameplay, much like the Red Death battle royale mode did.

        You’re not alone either with four AI civilizations (Spain, Netherlands, England, and France) fighting to control the map, as well as Buccaneers, this scenario’s version of Barbarians.

      • Don’t Starve Together gets a brand new biome and an animated short | GamingOnLinux

        Klei Entertainment continue expanding their incredible looking survival game Don’t Starve Together, with the Return of Them: Forgotten Knowledge update out now along with a Halloween event.

        This is the online version of Don’t Starve that you can play with friends, and it’s been going through something of an evolution. Return of Them is a series of big updates, each expanding the game in different ways and Return of Them: Forgotten Knowledge continues that trend.

      • First-person magic-shooting rogue-lite ‘Ziggurat 2′ enters Early Access | GamingOnLinux

        Ziggurat 2 from Milkstone Studios has arrived in Early Access, letting you jump into the shoes of a mage and blast through some freaky creatures with all sorts of wands and staffs in gorgeous first-person action. What’s awesome is how Milkstone decided to support Linux right away too, so we have it from day-1.

        If you’ve not played the original, fear not as you don’t need to. It’s a firmly standalone game, and thanks to the mechanics and progression it’s real easy to get into and enjoy. Exactly like the original, it’s a first-person dungeon crawling rogue-lite FPS that relies on speed and skill to progress through various rooms of enemies.

        The story here is that the Ziggurat housed various dangerous creatures, some of which couldn’t be destroyed so they were locked away. The Ziggurat was mostly destroyed during some sort of civil war between mages, and so tons of these creatures escaped. It’s up to you to travel around and deal with them as best you can across various quests.

      • Try not to lose your head in a world full of colour in GONNER2 out now | GamingOnLinux

        In motion, GONNER2 is almost mesmerising in how the world flows around with colourful tiles flowing in and connecting up that follows your movements. Honestly, the design work alone on it totally deserves an award. Gameplay though? Well, it’s a rather challenging platformer with roguelike elements, where you play as the “largely misunderstood and altruistic Ikk”. It’s absolutely hectic, quite confusing initially as it dumps you into the world but you soon get the hang of it thanks to the simple to grasp controls.

        GONNER2 rewards speed. Go fast, shoot fast, take down as many enemies as you can in a short space of time and keep on jumping and running while trying not to lose your head. You build up a combination as you keep on taking enemies down, which will boost up your score.

      • Rogue, the original Roguelike from 1980, is now available on Steam | PC Gamer

        “Roguelike” is a well-known genre of videogame: Spelunky 2, Noita, Hades, Demons Ate My Neighbors, Caves of Qud, Stoneshard, and Atomicrops are all relatively recent examples. But have you ever wondered where the name actually originated—or more to the point, wished you had a chance to actually play the ancient progenitor that started it all? Now you can, and on Steam no less, thanks to today’s launch of the original Rogue, developed by Epyx and released all the way back in 1980.

      • The big tech upgrade for They Bleed Pixels is now out everywhere | GamingOnLinux

        They Bleed Pixels, a fiendishly difficult action platformer inspired by H.P. Lovecraft and classic horror recently released on the Nintendo Switch which gave the PC version a nice tech upgrade too.

        While technically this has been out for a while, as the itch.io release of They Bleed Pixels back in June had all the upgrades it wasn’t updated everywhere else. As of this week though, it’s now live on Steam too. Much like the recent 64bit upgrade to Quadrilateral Cowboy, this tech upgrade was done by game porter Ethan Lee.

        So what’s new? Much improved and expanded gamepad support including hot-plugging, additional pad support, PS4 and Switch glyphs are now supported and the icons will correctly switch on-screen, the cut-scenes have been improved to fade properly, 64bit support Linux and macOS, checkpoint save/load optimizations and plenty of bug fixes.

      • Cyberpunk adventure Quadrilateral Cowboy goes 64bit on Linux | GamingOnLinux

        The weekend is just about here and if you’re stuck for something to do, why not try out the cyberpunk adventure Quadrilateral Cowboy with the latest update.

        “Quadrilateral Cowboy is a single-player adventure in a cyberpunk world. Tread lightly through security systems with your hacking deck and grey-market equipment. With top-of-the-line hardware like this, it means just one thing: you answer only to the highest bidder.”

        [...]

        Wonderful to see more Linux games get updated to continue working far into the future with all that 64bit goodness. Ports done by Ethan Lee are always great.

      • According to a Stadia developer, streamers should be paying publishers and it backfired | GamingOnLinux

        After a three day event to show off new games for Stadia, along with three special demos now live you would think Google was having a good time. Unfortunately for them, one developer derailed it all.

        For a quick recap of the Stadia event you can see day 1 here with PAC-MAN Mega Tunnel Battle, day 2 here with the HUMANKIND demo and as for day 3: you can now play a free demo of the upcoming Immortals Fenyx Rising free, they announced a new exclusive ‘First on Stadia’ title Young Souls and the strategy game Phoenix Point is coming to Stadia in 2021. Additionally, they expanded their invite system so that if you do invite a friend to Stadia, they will get two months of Stadia Pro free and if they continue with it you then get a month free too. See the Stadia community post for all the info on that.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • KDE Neon vs Kubuntu: What’s the Difference Between the Two KDE Distribution?

          I know it is often confusing especially if you have never used either of them but got them as recommendations for usage. Hence, to help you make a decision, I thought of compiling a list of differences (and similarities) between KDE Neon and Kubuntu.

          Let’s start with getting to know the similarities and then proceed with the differences.

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • Molly de Blanc: Endorsements

          This transparency could mean many things, though it most frequently refers to the technology itself: the code or, in the case of hardware, the designs. We could also apply it to the overall architecture of a system. We could think about the decision making, practices, and policies of whomever is designing and/or making the technology. These are all valuable in some of the same ways, including that they allow us to make a conscious choice about what we are supporting.

          When we choose to use a piece of technology, we are supporting those who produce it. This could be because we are directly paying for it, however our support is not limited to direct financial contributions. In some cases this is because of things hidden within a technology: tracking mechanisms or backdoors that could allow companies or governments access to what we’re doing. When creating different types of files on a computer, these files can contain metadata that says what software was used to make it. This is an implicit endorsement, and you can also explicitly endorse a technology by talking about that or how you use it. In this, you have a right (not just a duty) to be aware of what you’re supporting. This includes, for example, organizational practices and whether a given company relies on abusive labor policies, indentured servitude, or slave labor.

          [...]

          Not only does this empower those making choices about what technologies to use, but it empowers others down the line, who rely on those choices. It also respects the people involved in the processes of making these technologies. By acknowledging their role in bringing our tools to life, we are respecting their labor. By holding companies accountable for their practices and policies, we are respecting their lives.

        • Molly de Blanc: GNOME Asia 2020 Registrations Are Open

          Topics covered include the GNOME desktop and a range of other topics that are GNOME specific and general to the free software and tech communities. The summit brings together the GNOME community in Asia to provide a place for users, developers, leaders, governments and businesses to discuss present technology and future developments.

        • gedit and around

          (( As a small interlude, I’ve assembled a page with my statistics about my GNOME contributions (number of git commits in the different modules). Numbers can tell a story, and the story is probably useful for the gedit crowdfunding ;-) )).

          I write this blog post to talk more about gedit, its philosophy for the user experience (the external aspects) and trends in its code development (the internals). I will also relate on an improvement to a plugin, to allow new use-cases. To finish with a list of possible topics to talk about the next time: other recent work already done (or in progress), the future work that will be done, and some other future possible tasks (if time permits); heh, this is an endless software project after all, like many.

          [...]

          If you count the check-boxes, it’s the same number before and after. But with the new preferences, it’s more powerful! Before, the configuration was a list (a set of flags). Now, it is a two-dimensional matrix (a table), with the whitespace character type on one dimension and its location in the text on the other dimension. Note that the way this is presented to the user doesn’t look like a matrix or table, it has been a little abstracted away.

          New use-cases that are now possible: basically, draw only unwanted whitespaces. Examples of unwanted whitespaces: all kinds of trailing spaces on a line (git doesn’t like them), plus possibly tabulations if the indentation/alignment needs to be done with spaces. Note that such a configuration still allows the non-breaking spaces to be drawn at all locations, to distinguish them from normal spaces (since everybody will agree that this is a good thing, there is no configuration for it, it is always enabled when the plugin is enabled).

          This functionality is easily available to other applications, I’ve implemented the new preferences widget in the Tepl library. The drawing of the little symbols in the text area is implemented in GtkSourceView, where I’ve implemented the new API with the matrix several years ago.

    • Distributions

      • Linux vs. BSD: 10 Key Things You Need to Know

        Both Linux and BSD (Berkeley Software Distribution) are free, open-source, and based on Unix. Both systems also use many of the same applications and strive towards the same goal – developing the most stable and reliable operating system.

        But, despite all the similarities, these are two distinct operating systems with plenty of differences. Keeping this in mind, we have put together a detailed read going over 10 key differences between Linux vs. BSD to give you a better understanding of the two systems.

      • New Releases

        • What’s New in Pop!_OS 20.10

          Pop!_OS 20.10 is the result of fine-tuning features released in version 20.04. Continue on to see what we’ve added!

          This addition also includes a new library for repository management, which adds features such as the ability to change the default system repository mirrors, reset mirrors to defaults, and change the names of your repositories.

      • SUSE/OpenSUSE

        • Node.js, OpenSSL, Mesa Update in Tumbleweed

          Some of the package updates in the snapshots include newer versions of Node.js, OpenSSL, Mesa, Apparmor, ImageMagick and AutoYaST.

          The latest snapshot, 20201021, is trending stable at a 98 rating on the Tumbleweed snapshot reviewer. This snapshot updated Mozilla Thunderbird to version 78.3.3 and improved support for encrypting with subkeys with OpenPGP. The new email client version also added support for wayland mode/autodetection in a startup wrapper. The security kernel module Apparmor added missing permissions to several profiles and abstractions. The 5.9 version of ethtool arrived in the snapshot and improved compatibility between system call ioctl and netlink output. The Linux Kernel updated to 5.8.15 and fixed a close proximity Common Vulnerabilities and Exposure, CVE-2020-12352, that could allow a remote attacker in adjacent range to use the flaw to leak small portions of stack memory by sending specially crafted Bluetooth AMP Packets. Node.js 14.14.0 had some bug fixes and a few changes like the behaviour of a new fs.rm method that follows the UNIX rm command. The update of the ruby2.7 package to 2.7.2 turned off deprecation warnings by default.

        • openSUSE Tumbleweed – Review of the week 2020/43 – Dominique a.k.a. DimStar (Dim*)

          During this week, we have only released 3 snapshots (1019, 1021, and 1022). a bunch of snapshots has been tested and discarded due to some bugs we, and surely either you, did not want to see on your machines. But as usual; lesser snapshots do not mean less change, as things just cumulate until we feel confident to send a snapshot out again.

        • Introducing the Open Build Service Connector [Ed: SUSE sucking up to Microsoft’s openwashed proprietary software as usual]

          That’s right. The Open Build Service Connector is built around bookmarks of packages and projects. Bookmarks can be used to browse a project, its packages and its files. Additionally, you can view the configured repositories and adjust project paths and architectures.

          Individual packages or whole projects can be checked out directly from within Visual Studio Code to the file system similarly as one would do via osc. OBS’ version control is seamlessly integrated into Visual Studio Code’s Source Control module and can be used in a comparable fashion to the git extension.

        • Richard Brown: MicroOS Desktop, The Road to Daily Driving – LinuxReviews

          openSUSE Chairman and MicroOS Release Engineer Richard Brown presented OpenSUSE’s minimal MicroOS Linux distribution as a potential desktop operating system at the openSUSE+LibreOffice Virtual Conference 2020 last week in a half an hour long presentation. MicroOS is a minimal Linux distribution primarily made for cloud services, IoT devices, containers and those types of use-cases. It could potentially also be used as a light desktop system similar to ChromeOS and an alpha version of MicroOS for Desktop is available. There are some problems to be solved on the road to a stable release as Richard Brown explains.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • Open Source Defies Conflicts of Interest: Red Hat Tells All

          Only two parts of the guidelines state any sort of limit on company associates, she clarified. The first is that projects use an Open Source Initiative-approved license. The second is that if an associate is asked to sign a third-party contributor agreement, they should check with Red Hat’s legal team.

        • Red Hat’s Paul Cormier On How Partners Win The Hybrid Cloud
        • ANZ moves internet banking to Red Hat OpenShift

          The Australia and New Zealand Banking Corporation (ANZ) in October last year turned to Red Hat for help to bring its internet banking proof of concept to life.

          The bank wanted to modernise its internet banking platform that had passed its end of life and required extended support for some years. Deciding on a Red Hat OpenShift platform, tech area lead for ANZ’s digital arm Raghavendra Bhat said the bank wanted to not constrain itself to a cloud-only solution.

          ANZ has now migrated 30% of its traffic to the platform and within the first hour of go-live, it processed around AU$2.9 billion worth of payments.

          Speaking with media on Wednesday, Bhat said the bank’s expectation is to complete about 80% of the traffic transition onto the new platform by November, with complete transition by March. He said there has been no “cookie-cutter approach” for how it has lifted and shifted the old system onto the new one.

        • Juggling Ansible, OpenShift and K8s? This is for you: Red Hat couples automation to cluster management

          Red Hat is integrating its Ansible automation platform and Advanced Cluster Management for Kubernetes.

          “We’ve known people use Ansible and OpenShift and Kubernetes together for years,” Red Hat senior manager Richard Henshall told The Register. “But here we get a bona fide integration between the two.” Typical uses would be to automate deploying system updates, configuring load balancers, or scaling server resources.

          The integration is in technical preview. “We’ve got the initial plumbing working, so it’s exposed through Advanced Cluster Management (ACM),” said Henshall, referring to the company’s tool for controlling OpenShift clusters and applications.

        • About me and my life …: Fedora 32 : Can be better? part 016.

          Today I tested the Unity 3D version 2020 on Linux Fedora 32.Maybe it would be better to integrate Unity 3D or Unity Hub in Fedora repo just like other useful software like Blender 3D, GIMP.It will improve the user experience and attract new users and developers for this distro.I download the AppImage from Unity website and I run with these commands…

        • Why it’s important to keep the cloud open | Opensource.com

          There’s a famous sticker featured on many laptop lids; it goes something like this: “the ‘cloud’ is just somebody else’s computer.”

          There’s a lot of truth to that sentiment, but it’s not exactly technically accurate. In fact, cloud computing isn’t just somebody else’s computer; it’s somebody else’s hundreds and thousands of computers.

          Years ago, “the cloud” did indeed just refer to the simplified graphic in a flowchart, so the illustrator didn’t have to try to accurately depict the multiple networks that comprise the World Wide Web. Now, however, the cloud isn’t just describing traffic or small-time remote file storage offers. The cloud of today is a platform of interconnected computational nodes working together to keep containerized Linux images, each running a distinct service (or “microservice” in developer lingo), functioning as applications distributed over the whole world.

        • Red Hat talks and workshops at NodeConf Remote 2020 – Red Hat Developer

          Red Hat is heading to NodeConf Remote 2020 with IBM to demonstrate a few of our favorite production-quality tools and solutions, all designed to help developers maintain their productivity while successfully navigating the vast and rapidly-changing cloud-native landscape.

          Attend our conference talks and workshops, or talk with an expert during the virtual booth crawl and get a look at our latest workflows for building cloud-native JavaScript solutions on Kubernetes and Red Hat OpenShift. Our open source experts can show you how to integrate JavaScript and Node.js with other technologies like authentication, distributed data caching and streaming, or business automation.

        • Fedora 33 To Be Released Next Week

          Fedora 33 will manage to ship on-time per its back-up target date of next week Tuesday.

          While Fedora 33 wasn’t ready to ship this Tuesday per its “preferred” target date, Fedora 33 has been cleared by to ship next week on its “Final Target date #1″ for this major update to the Red Hat sponsored Linux distribution.

        • ABRT Analytics 2.3.0 released

          A new version of ABRT Analytics (formerly known as FAF) has just been released. From the user’s point of view, you will probably find the following changes the most noticable…

        • [Older] Ben Williams: F32-20201016 Updated isos Released
        • [Older] Ben Williams: F32-20201001 updated-isos Released
        • [Older] OSBuild Project: Release of cockpit-composer 25
        • [Older] Release of osbuild 21
        • First release of koji-osbuild
        • Release of osbuild 22
        • Release of osbuild-composer 22
        • Introducing RPMrepo
        • Resiliency in Banking : A ‘must have’ for continuity in the new reality (Part 2)

          As cited previously, a new business operating environment – whether from an increasingly demanding customer ecosystem or as a result of external events – has necessitated new approaches to understand challenges, adapt, focus, and formulate the new normal. In addition to shifts in the ways consumers interact with banks, internal cultural reluctance to change can be an obstacle. Banking organizations have recognized the need for new operational approaches, but also have often been cautious in light of inherent risks – especially when combining a cloud, data center and on-premises model.

        • What’s new in Smart Management with Satellite 6.8 – YouTube
      • Debian Family

        • Linux-Based TrueNAS SCALE Alpha Released

          The crew at iXsystems this week not only released TrueNAS 12.0 as their convergence of TrueNAS and FreeNAS, but they have also put out an alpha build of TrueNAS SCALE as their new Linux-based offering.

        • Salsa updated to GitLab 13.5

          Today, GitLab released the version 13.5 with several new features. Also Salsa got some changes applied to it.

          [...]

          It’s been way over two years since we started to use Google Compute Engine (GCE) for Salsa. Since then, all the jobs running on the shared runners run within a n1-standard-1 instance, providing a fresh set of one vCPU and 3.75GB of RAM for each and every build.

          GCE supports several new instance types, featuring better and faster CPUs, including current AMD EPICs. However, as it turns out, GCE does not support any single vCPU instances for any of those types. So jobs in the future will use n2d-standard-2 for the time being, provinding two vCPUs and 8GB of RAM..

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Ubuntu Touch: What It Is and Why It Is Awesome

          Ubuntu, a popular open-source operating system (OS), has garnered a huge community around it. The OS has been around for quite some time and has gone through numerous changes and updates. Since Ubuntu has a Linux kernel at its core, it adheres to the same philosophy as Linux. For example, everything needs to be free, with open-source availability. Thus, it is extremely secure and reliable. Furthermore, it is well-known for its stability, and it is improved with each update.

          Ubuntu combines the fantastic .deb Debian package with an exceptionally stable desktop environment to produce a system that works fantastically well. In addition, because it has one of the largest communities, developers usually produce Linux-based software for Ubuntu first to cater to the large community.

          [...]

          Since Ubuntu Touch is built upon Ubuntu, it uses the same color scheme as and a similar layout to Ubuntu Desktop. Unlike Android and iOS, Ubuntu Touch does not make much use of buttons; the only two buttons it uses are the power button and the volume button. Furthermore, Ubuntu Touch does not have a centralized home location to return to after clicking the home button and instead uses an applications launcher, which stores all the installed applications.

        • Ubuntu 20.10 ‘Groovy Gorilla’ Swings Onto Raspberry Pi

          We have tested Ubuntu 20.10 installation via an external NVMe drive connected using USB 3. We can confirm that this is possible and much simpler than previously indicated. The Ubuntu 20.10 image for Raspberry Pi 4 can be directly written to a USB drive using Balena Etcher or Raspberry Pi Imager. To boot from USB the Raspberry Pi 4 will need be configured using Raspberry Pi OS as per our guide.

        • How to Upgrade Ubuntu 20.04 to 20.10 (Focal Fossa to Groovy Gorilla)

          Ubuntu 20.10 is available to download now. Here are the steps on how to upgrade your current Ubuntu 20.04 LTS Focal Fossa to Ubuntu 20.10 Groovy Gorilla.

        • Major Windows Exploit | Quibi Failure | Ubuntu 20.10 Release
        • Ubuntu 20.10 Groovy Gorilla Family Released

          Ubuntu 20.10 aka Groovy Gorilla finally released by Canonical bringing the latest and greatest Free Libre Open Source Software technology to worldwide computer users. What’s new in this release is that it’s the first time Ubuntu Desktop available for Raspberry Pi – the world most popular ARM-based computers. Now here’s list of Ubuntu Desktop, Ubuntu Server, Ubuntu for Raspberry Pi download links, as well as Official Flavors from Kubuntu to Ubuntu Budgie with Checksums included. Simply click and download. Happy downloading!

        • Ubuntu 20.10 Released, Download Now

          Ubuntu 20.10 Groovy Gorilla is now available for the download. For your information, Ubuntu 20.10 ‘Groovy Gorilla’ is a short-term release version with 9 months of security updates and critical fixes.

          Along with Ubuntu 20.10, all the flavours are also available for the download from the respective official website. One of the interesting part of the Ubuntu 20.10 release is it’s desktop support for the Raspberry Pi4 (4GB + 8GB models).

        • Ubuntu 20.10 Groovy Gorilla released

          Ubuntu has announced the latest release of its Linux-based operating system, codenamed Groovy Gorilla.

          Ubuntu 20.10 is the first Ubuntu release to feature desktop images for the Raspberry Pi 4.

          “The Ubuntu kernel has been updated to the 5.8 based Linux kernel, and our default toolchain has moved to gcc 10 with glibc 2.32. Additionally, there is now a desktop variant of the Raspberry Pi image for Raspberry Pi 4 4GB and 8GB,” the Ubuntu release team said in its announcement.

          Ubuntu Desktop 20.10 introduces GNOME 3.38, which the Ubuntu team said comes with significant performance improvements and a more responsive user experience.

        • Ubuntu 20.10 (Groovy Gorilla) released

          Codenamed “Groovy Gorilla”, 20.10 continues Ubuntu’s proud tradition of integrating the latest and greatest open source technologies into a high-quality, easy-to-use Linux distribution. The team has been hard at work through this cycle, introducing new features and fixing bugs.

          The Ubuntu kernel has been updated to the 5.8 based Linux kernel, and our default toolchain has moved to gcc 10 with glibc 2.32. Additionally, there is now a desktop variant of the Raspberry Pi image for Raspberry Pi 4 4GB and 8GB.

          Ubuntu Desktop 20.10 introduces GNOME 3.38, the fastest release yet with significant performance improvements delivering a more responsive experience. Additionally, the desktop installer includes the ability to connect to Active Directory domains.

        • Kubuntu 20.10 Groovy Gorilla released

          The Kubuntu community are delighted to announce the release of Kubuntu 20.10 Groovy Gorilla. For this release Kubuntu ships with Plasma 5.19.5 and Applications 20.08. The desktop carries the fresh new look and gorgeous wallpaper design selected by the KDE Visual Design Group.

          [...]

          Dolphin, KDE’s file explorer, for example, adds previews for more types of files and improvements to the way long names are summarized, allowing you to better see what each file is or does.

          [...]

          For those of you into photography, KDE’s professional photo management application, digiKam has just released its version 7.0.0. The highlight here is the smart face recognition feature that uses deep-learning to match faces to names and even recognizes pets.

          If it is the night sky you like photographing, you must try the new version of KStars. Apart from letting you explore the Universe and identify stars from your desktop and mobile phone, new features include more ways to calibrate your telescope and get the perfect shot of heavenly bodies.

        • Ubuntu Studio 20.10 Released – Ubuntu Studio

          The Ubuntu Studio team is pleased to announce the release of Ubuntu Studio 20.10, code-named “Groovy Gorilla”. This marks Ubuntu Studio’s 28th release. This release is a regular release, and as such it is supported for nine months until July 2021.

          Since it’s just out, you may experience some issues, so you might want to wait a bit before upgrading. Please see the release notes for a complete list of changes and known issues.

          You can download Ubuntu Studio 20.10 from our download page.

        • Seven Official Flavors Of Ubuntu 20.10 “Groovy Gorilla” Released

          Yesterday, Canonical announced the release of the new non-LTS Ubuntu 20.10 “Groovy Gorilla” with Linux kernel 5.8, GNOME 3.38, optimized desktop image for Raspberry Pi 4, and nine months of support until July 2021.

        • Lubuntu 20.10 (Groovy Gorilla) Released! | Lubuntu

          Thanks to all the hard work from our contributors, Lubuntu 20.10 has been released! With the codename Groovy Gorilla, Lubuntu 20.10 is the 19th release of Lubuntu, the fifth release of Lubuntu with LXQt as the default desktop environment.

          [...]

          Lubuntu 18.04 LTS, the last supported release with LXDE, will be supported until April 2021 and Lubuntu 20.04 LTS will be supported until April 2023. For both of these releases, we are limiting changes to critical fixes and underlying system changes shipped with all other Ubuntu flavors.

        • Ubuntu 20.10 on Raspberry Pi delivers the full Linux desktop and micro clouds

          Canonical has released Ubuntu 20.10 with optimised Raspberry Pi images for desktop and server, in support of learners, inventors, educators and entrepreneurs, bringing the world’s most open platform to the world’s most accessible hardware.

          The Raspberry Pi 2, 3, and 4 join a very long list of x86 and ARM devices certified with Ubuntu, the operating system (OS) best known for its public cloud and desktop offerings. Dell, HP and Lenovo all certify PCs with Ubuntu Desktop, which is also the most widely used OS on the AWS, Microsoft Azure, Google, IBM and Oracle clouds.

          Ubuntu 20.10 also includes LXD 4.6 and MicroK8s 1.19 for resilient micro clouds, small clusters of servers providing VMs and Kubernetes on demand at the edge, for remote office, branch office, warehouse and distribution oriented infrastructure.

        • Ubuntu 20.10 Groovy Gorilla update brings Ubuntu Desktop to the Raspberry Pi

          Canonical has announced the release of Ubuntu 20.10, aka ‘Groovy Gorilla’. The big news in this release is a newly optimized stack that brings Ubuntu Desktop and Server to the Raspberry Pi range. Since the launch of the Raspberry Pi 4 in 2019, the diminutive computer line has been increasingly sympathetic to being used as a desktop alternative, and the arrival of a tailored version of the biggest Linux GUI (Android excluded, of course) is a significant step on that road.

          “In this release, we celebrate the Raspberry Pi Foundation’s commitment to put open computing in the hands of people all over the world,” said Mark Shuttleworth, CEO at Canonical. “We are honored to support that initiative by optimizing Ubuntu on the Raspberry Pi, whether for personal use, educational purposes, or as a foundation for their next business venture.”

          Ubuntu 20.10 can also run on RP 2 and 3 variants but only with 4GB RAM and above – if you go lower than that, you’ll probably get a smooth installation but a glitchy experience. You’ll also see improved support for 2-in-1 devices with on-screen keyboard modes, and more devices of all form-factors now support fingerprint readers under Linux.

        • Ubuntu clouds on the Raspberry Pi

          Canonical, Ubuntu Linux’s parent company, just released Ubuntu 20.10. This “Groovy Gorilla” is a short-term release (STR) that’s only supported for 9 months. If you want an Ubuntu to use in production you want the long-term support (LTS) Ubuntu 20.04. But, the new Ubuntu does come with one new feature that Raspberry Pi users will appreciate. It’s the first version to come with optimized Raspberry Pi images for the desktop, server, and the cloud. Yes, the cloud. Stick with me. Here’s how it works.

          First, Ubuntu 20.10 is built on top of the Linux 5.8 kernel. For the desktop, it now uses the GNOME 3.38 release. It also comes with the latest and greatest open-source desktop programs such as the Firefox 81 web browser, the Thunderbird 73 e-mail client, and the LibreOffice 7.0.2 office suite. For Ubuntu workers in a primarily Windows shop, you can now install Ubuntu with Active Directory (AD) integration. Oh, and you can now run the full desktop on the Raspberry Pi 2, 3, and 4.

        • OpenStack Victoria for Ubuntu 20.10 and Ubuntu 20.04 LTS

          The Ubuntu OpenStack team at Canonical is pleased to announce the general availability of OpenStack Victoria on Ubuntu 20.10 (Groovy Gorilla) and Ubuntu 20.04 LTS (Focal Fossa) via the Ubuntu Cloud Archive.

        • Canonical & Ubuntu Join AfricaCom Virtual 2020

          This year, AfricaCom becomes a virtual event as part of the new Virtual Africa Tech Festival – the largest and most influential tech and telecoms event on the continent. Canonical and Ubuntu will be joining as a Lead Stream Sponsor, introducing the Digital Infrastructure Investment stream of sessions and exhibits with a speaker session by Mark Shuttleworth – Canonical’s founder and CEO.

        • Full Disk Encryption, without LVM, by default – Call for comments

          Historically Desktop / Server, only configured LUKS full disk encryption with an LVM layer. Thus ones root ext4 filesystem was an LVM volume, on an VG group, on LUKS, on a GPT partition.

          The upcoming Ubuntu Core 20 has full disk encryption with TPM support. In that configuration ext4 filesystem is created directly on the LUKS volume which is directly on a GPT partitition.

          For the upcoming HH 21.04 release, I want to change Desktop/Server, to also install in a similar fashion. Specifically such that by default, we simply use ext4+LUKS without LVM.

          It seems to me that despite having LVM layer, it’s not actually used or appreciated much.

          Would you be ok with having full-disk encryption without LVM by default?

        • Ubuntu 21.04 Installer Might Allow EXT4 Encryption Without LVM – Phoronix

          An early proposal by Ubuntu/Canonical developer Dimitri John Ledkov is proposing full disk encryption by default without LVM. With Ubuntu Core 20 there is going to be support for TPM-backed full disk encryption created directly on the LUKS volume and in turn directly on a GPT partition without LVM. For Ubuntu 21.04, the developers are looking at changing the Ubuntu desktop/server installers to potentially allow similar EXT4 encryption directly atop LUKS without LVM.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • New open source project crowdsources internet security

        CrowdSec is a new security project designed to protect servers, services, containers, or virtual machines exposed on the internet with a server-side agent. It was inspired by Fail2Ban and aims to be a modernized, collaborative version of that intrusion-prevention framework.

        CrowdSec is free and open source (under an MIT License), with the source code available on GitHub. It is currently is available for Linux, with ports to macOS and Windows on the roadmap.

      • 15 Open-Source Push Notification Projects, Alternative to Apple and Google (Firebase) services

        A push notification is the message that pops up on your mobile iOS or Android, and sometimes on your desktop or a web browser. It’s often used by application publishers and authors to notify the end-user’s device about certain event.

        It looks like SMS text message and local mobile alerts, but they are application oriented only appears to user who use the application.

        Users can stop any push notification anytime from their mobile settings in the notifications section. However, they are essential for many applications so the user should be selective when selecting the app.

        Push technology (server push) are technical term for internet-based communication that occurs when a server notifies the client about certain transaction (notification).

      • Uncovering the Best Open Source Google Analytics Alternatives

        Web analytics is the measurement, collection, analysis and reporting of internet data. In a nutshell, it is the study of website visitor behavior. It is the process of using online data to transform a organization from faith-based to data driven.

        This type of software helps you generate a holistic view of your business by turning customer interactions into actionable insights. Using reports and dashboards, web analytics software lets you sort, sift and share real-time information to help identify opportunities and issues. Keeping track of web visitors, analyzing traffic sources, measuring sales and conversions are just some of the possibilities.

        Google Analytics is an excellent well known free service that lets webmasters and site owners access web analytics data. The web service generates detailed statistics about a website’s traffic and sources. It helps marketers and is the most widely used website statistics service. But the biggest downside with Google Analytics is that your data is controlled and used for Google’s own purposes, not just by you. It is also not an open source solution, with a webmaster or site owner being denied access to the raw data.

        There are also many other remote-hosted web analytics services that are well-designed and comprehensive. However, if you want an open source solution where the software is hosted on your own server, there are some good alternatives. Having the software installed on your server means that you retain full control over your data, with the possibility of integrating that data into your own system. This solution might, for example, be important to people who do not want to give Google (or another organization) the invitation to control a large portion of their online activity, or who want to be fully in control of visitor privacy.

        To provide an insight into the quality of software that is available, we have compiled the following list of open source web analytics software.

      • ITFirms Lists Top Free, Open-Source Statistical Analysis Software
      • Cloud Foundry Is A Developer Experience For Kubernetes | Chip Childers
      • OpenStack Foundation Rebrands as Open Infrastructure Foundation

        Also announced at the Open Infrastructure Summit was the OpenStack Victoria open source cloud platform, with improved integration with Kubernetes and enhanced IPv6 support. / In a keynote at the event, Thierry Carrez, vice president of engineering at the Open Infrastructure Foundation, said his personal definition for cloud native is applications designed to run on programmable infrastructure. “Cloud native requires programmable infrastructure, and open infrastructure provides an open source solution for that,” Carrez said. “So cloud native and open infrastructure really go together like bread and butter.”

      • OpenStack Foundation transforms into the Open Infrastructure Foundation

        The writing was on the wall two years ago. The OpenStack Foundation was going to cover more than just the OpenStack Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) cloud. Today, that metamorphosis is complete. The Foundation now covers a wide variety of open-source cloud and container technologies as the Open Infrastructure Foundation.

      • Events

        • Justin W. Flory: Hacktoberfest 2020 with TeleIRC

          October is here! If you contribute to Open Source projects, you might know that October is the month of Hacktoberfest. DigitalOcean teams up with different partners each year to send a t-shirt (or plant a tree on your behalf) for anyone who makes four GitHub Pull Requests in October. And guess what? TeleIRC is a participating project for you to get your Hacktoberfest t-shirt or tree!

          This post identifies specific tasks the TeleIRC team identified as “good first issues” for Hacktoberfest hackers. They are in order of least difficult to most difficult. Golang developers especially are encouraged to participate!

        • Open Source Summit Europe & ELCE 2020

          Following a great virtual ELC & Open Source Summit North America last June/July, Collabora will be attending their European counterparts, Open Source Summit Europe & Embedded Linux Conference Europe, which take place next week, from October 26 to October 29.

          “The 4-day event is dedicated to everything open source and will showcase a program of 250+ talks (conference session, tutorials, BoFs and keynotes) across tracks covering Linux Systems, IoT, AI, Cloud & Cloud Native, OS Dependability, OS Databases, Diversity & Inclusion, OS Leadership, Open Source Program Office Management (TODO) and the Embedded Linux Conference.”

          Collaborans will once again be actively participating in the week’s activities with no less than 8 presentations on topics including fuzzing Linux drivers with syzkaller, efficient syscall emulation on Linux, demystifying Linux kernel initcalls, creating Debian-based embedded systems in the Cloud using debos, simplifying and reusing your driver’s code with regmaps, the new Futux2() system call, and the state of Linux gaming. You can find the details for all of these presentations below.

      • Web Browsers

        • Mozilla

          • [Old] Mozilla WebThings To Become An Independent Open Source Project

            Mozilla has announced that Mozilla WebThings is being “spun out” as an independent open source project. It means that WebThings is no longer going to be a direct project from Mozilla.

            The company says that it’s winding down its direct investment in WebThings. This transition will happen to stabilize the WebThings gateways around the world. Now, WebThings is getting an independent domain and will work on the web of things, independent of Mozilla.

          • Firefox on Fedora with OpenH264 – Martin Stransky’s Blog

            Firefox on Fedora which sits in the updates [F32][F31] right now comes with enabled OpenH264 Cisco decoder for video playback and fdk-aac-free used for audio decoding.

            It’s implemented by GMP (Gecko Media Plugin) API so the OpenH264 is not used through ffmpeg library but Firefox sandboxed interface, the same as Firefox uses for Widevine CDM plugin.

            The OpenH264 GMP video playback is a fallback solution when system ffmpeg is missing and internal ffvpx library can’t decode the stream, so ffmpeg from RPM Fusion is always a better alternative if you can install it.

            The video streams are decoded by system wide OpenH264 2.1.1 which is shipped by Fedora as mozilla-openh264 rpm package. Even if Mozilla OpenH264 (1.8.1) plugin is installed in your profile and claimed at about:plugins page, the Fedora system one is used.

      • Productivity Software/LibreOffice/Calligra

        • Bug Hunting Session for LibreOffice 7.1 Alpha

          LibreOffice 7.1 is being developed by our worldwide community, and is due to be released in early February 2021 — see the release notes describing the new features here.

          In order to find, report and triage bugs, the LibreOffice QA team is organizing the first Bug Hunting Session for LibreOffice 7.1 on Monday October 26 , 20 20 . Tests will be performed on the first Alpha version. Builds will be available for Linux (DEB and RPM), macOS and Windows, and can be installed and run in parallel along with the production version.

        • Camera Rotation Improvement – LibreOffice / Collabora Office

          Texts in shapes is frequently used in LibreOffice. LibreOffice already supports rotation of the text in shape for years. But some users prefer to use camera rotation to rotate text in shape.

      • FSFE

        • 35 years FSF +++ Participation at SFSCon +++ Technical job vacancy

          35 years ago, our sister organisation, the Free Software Foundation, was founded to work for users’ freedoms to use, study, share, and improve software with the introductory line that “Our work will not be finished until every computer user is able to do all of their digital tasks in complete freedom”. That is a promise that holds true even after thirty-five years of working for software freedom and inspiring countless people and many organisations to take a stand for user freedoms. The FSFE’s President, Matthias Kirschner, recorded a congratulatory speech in which he reflected on the importance the FSF and our movement have had and continue to have over the years.

      • FSF

        • GNU Projects

          • GNU Parallel – News: GNU Parallel 20201022 (‘Samuel Paty’) [Savannah]

            GNU Parallel 20201022 (‘Samuel Paty’) has been released. It is available for download at: http://ftpmirror.gnu.org/parallel/

            Please help spreading GNU Parallel by making a testimonial video like Juan Sierra Pons: http://www.elsotanillo.net/wp-content/uploads/GnuParallel_JuanSierraPons.mp4 It does not have to be as detailed as Juan’s. It is perfectly fine if you just say your name, and what field you are using GNU Parallel for.

      • Public Services/Government

        • EU Open Source Policy: good analysis, missing concrete next steps

          After the Commission’s previous Open Source Strategy expired in 2017, we have waited three years for a new one. Instead of the hoped-for major step, which would reflect current developments around the debates on digital sovereignty and state of the art administration, the Commission has presented only a fig leaf. The benefits of Free Software are fully emphasised and the Commission is ambitious in its future use of Free Software. But concrete goals are rare, and a clear commitment to the use of Free Software is lacking. A failure of the strategy is foreseeable at this stage as the objectives are ambitious but the measures merely establish the status quo. Therefore, we call upon the Commission to present and implement concrete measures and activities in the coming weeks and months.

      • Openness/Sharing/Collaboration

        • Open Access/Content

          • Hybrid open access risks limiting researchers’ publishing options

            In the case of the 34 Nature-branded journals, the first step is a “read and publish” deal with Germany’s Max Planck institutes, allowing affiliated researchers to both access the journals and to publish in them open access. The OA fee that Max Planck will pay is based on a cost of €9,500 (£8,600) per article. The publisher, Springer Nature, says that it is in discussions to allow authors worldwide to publish open access in Nature journals from next year.

            The UK alone spends more than £25 million on OA journal publishing annually, but the proportion that goes to large commercial publishers for OA in hybrid journals has increased year-on-year. The average cost for publishing in hybrid journals also continues to increase steadily.

            This trend has been evident since Springer Nature launched its leading OA journals, Nature Communications and Scientific Reports. In 2018 alone, these journals received more than £1.6 million from 30 UK research-intensive institutions. In 2019, Elsevier launched 100 new OA journals and the humanities publisher IEEE launched 13.

      • Programming/Development

        • LLVM Clang 12 Adds Support For Vectorization Using Glibc’s Vector Math Library – Phoronix

          Upstream LLVM/Clang now supports making use of the vector math library found within the GNU C Library.

          Clang 12 will allow for vectorization using libmvec via the -fvec-lib=libmvec compiler option.

        • Notes to self on frama-c | Richard WM Jones

          Frama-C is a giant modular system for writing formal proofs of C code. For months I’ve been on-and-off trying to see if we could use it to do useful proofs for any parts of the projects we write, like qemu, libvirt, libguestfs, nbdkit etc. I got side-tracked at first with this frama-c tutorial which is fine, but I got stuck trying to make the GUI work.

        • Why I Dislike Switch Statements

          Of course this is a contrived example, but readers will hopefully agree it’s representative of the construct.

        • Setup – Full Stack Tracing Part 2 – KDAB

          If you’ve read the first article in this series, you’ll know what full stack tracing is and why you definitely want it. This time, we’ll show you how to setup full stack tracing on your Linux system. There are two steps – first get everything configured to capture a trace, and then view and interpret the trace.

          Setup full stack tracing with a bit of kernel help

          To capture a trace, we’ll be using LTTng (Linux tracing toolkit next generation) in our examples. LTTng captures tracepoints with minimal overhead. This is something you definitely want, as too much extra CPU introduced by tracing can change the system’s behavior, even causing it to fail unpredictably. Another factor in LTTng’s favor is that it’s well supported by the open source community.

          LTTng was designed to record kernel level events. However, you’ll also want to use its user space tracepoints to capture application level events. That will give you consistent visibility, regardless of where execution moves throughout the software stack. User space tracepoints is critical to the setup of full stack tracing as it lets you integrate application, Qt, and kernel tracepoints together in a single view.

        • Mariuz’s Blog: Firebird 3.0.7 sub-release is available

          Firebird Project is happy to announce general availability of Firebird 3.0.7 — the latest point release in the Firebird 3.0 series.This sub-release offers many bug fixes and also adds a few improvements, please refer to the Release Notes for the full list of changes.Binary kits for Windows, Linux, Mac OS and Android platforms are immediately available for download.All users of Firebird v3.0.6 are

        • Use of self or $this in PHP – Linux Hint

          In PHP object-oriented programming, we have the self keyword and $this variable that is used for different purposes. The self keyword represents current and static members of the class. While the $this variable represents current object and non-static members of the class. More about these are discussed in this article.

        • 4 C programming courses for every skill level

          Even with so many other system-level languages to choose from, C remains the popular choice. Many key projects—such as the Linux kernel and the Python runtime—still use C, and they will likely do so indefinitely. For some fields of computing, like embedded programming, C is a must.
          And there has never been a better time to learn C. Resources abound, from books to guided courses. Here we’ll look at four major online course offerings for learning C programming, each aimed at different levels of user and offering different approaches. For instance, one combines learning C with learning Linux, while another teaches C and C++ together.

        • rand() Function in C Language – Linux Hint

          In the C language, the rand() function is used for Pseudo Number Generator(PRNG). The random numbers generated by the rand() function are not truly random. It is a sequence that repeats periodically, but the period is so large that we can ignore it. The rand() function works by remembering a seed value that is used to compute the next random number and the next new seed. In this article, we are going to discuss in detail how random numbers can be generated using the rand() function. So, let’s get started!

        • A bug by any other name – Open Source Security

          This tweet from Jim Manico really has me thinking about why we like to consider security bugs special. There are a lot of tools on the market today to scan your github repos, containers, operating systems, web pages … pick something, for security vulnerabilities. I’ve written a very very long series about these scanners and why they’re generally terrible today but will get better, but only if we demand it. I’m now wondering why we want to consider security special. Why do we have an entire industry focused just on security bugs?

          Let’s change the conversation a little bit. Rather than focus on security bugs, let’s ask the question: Which bugs in a given project should we care about?

          There are of course bugs an attacker could use to compromise your system. There are also bugs that could result in data loss. Or bugs that could bring everything down. What about a bug that uses 10% more CPU? Every piece of software has bugs. All bugs are equal, but some bugs are more equal than others.

          We are at a time in software history where we have decided security bugs are more equal than other bugs. This has created entire industries around scanning just for security problems. Unfortunately the end goal isn’t always to fix problems, the goal is often to find problems, so problems are found (a LOT of problems). I think this is a pretty typical case of perverse incentives. You will always find what you measure. The pendulum will swing back in time, maybe we can help it swing a little faster.

        • Perl/Raku

          • Why you should use ppport.h in your XS code modules | Karl Williamson [blogs.perl.org]
            
            The answer comes down to two words: Security and Reliability.
            As a bonus, less work on your part.
            
            It's surprising to find that there are modules on CPAN that aren't using
            ppport.h that could stand to benefit from it.
            
            ppport.h is a file that is part of the Devel::PPPort distribution. As you
            know, Perl has evolved over the years, adding new features, and new API for XS
            writers to use. Some of that is to support the new features, and some to make
            tasks easier to accomplish. ppport.h implements portions of the API that
            people have found desirable to have when a module gets installed in a Perl that
            was released before that API element was created. You can write your module
            using the latest API, and have it automatically work on old Perls, simply by
            #including ppport.h in your XS code. ppport.h generally provides support for
            an API element as is reasonably practicable, with many supported to 5.03007.
            
            Importantly, but often overlooked, ppport.h can override buggy early Perl
            implementations of an API element. By using it, you get fixed, proper
            behavior. That sure beats trying to reproduce a reported problem in your
            module that only happens in some ancient Perl, and then try to come up with a
            workaround in an area you aren't familiar with.
            
            This is especially important if your XS code interacts with Unicode in any way.
            Early versions of the Unicode standard and early Perls allowed things that we
            now know are potential attack vectors. Right now, someone could be using your
            module to hack into systems, so you are actually being negligent if you don't
            use ppport.h.
            
            If your XS code has preprocessor #if statements that check for the existence of
            functions, macros, etc, that are only in later perls, you can generally avoid
            that by simply using ppport.h
            
        • Python

          • Episode 32: Our New “Python Basics” Book & Filling the Gaps in Your Learning Path

            Do you have gaps in your Python learning path? If you’re like me, you may have followed a completely random route to learn Python. This week on the show, David Amos is here to talk about the release of the Real Python book, “Python Basics: A Practical Introduction to Python 3″. The book is designed not only to get beginners up to speed but also to help fill in the gaps many intermediate learners may still have.

          • Sentiment Analysis in Python With TextBlob

            In this article, we will take a look at how we can use the TextBlob library for sentiment analysis. We will also go through an example of how to analyze tweet sentiments.

          • Levene’s & Bartlett’s Test of Equality (Homogeneity) of Variance in Python

            Here you will learn how to carry out two tests for equality of variances in Python: Bartlett’s test and Levene’s Test

          • Python Code to Delete a File – Linux Hint

            We can use Python for performing various operations on file and directories, i.e., check the existence of files, verify the existence of directories, and remove the files and directories. Python provides a built-in operating system (OS) module for this purpose. By using the OS module, we can access the system files, directories, and we can delete them as well. Therefore, to perform any operation on file or directory, first, we need to import the OS module. In this article, we will learn to delete the file by using Python.

          • Check If File Exists in Python – Linux Hint

            Python provides a built-in operating system (OS) module that can be used to access OS files and directories. Any computer user often finds the need to check whether a file exists in a system. For example, suppose you are working on a file system and want to make sure that a file is available before performing any major operations on it. If you attempt to navigate or open a non-existent file, then this would cause an error. This article shows you how to use various Python file-checking mechanisms.

  • Leftovers

    • Britbox Streamer Promotes Emily Powers to North America Head

      BritBox, the U.K. content-focused streaming service launched by BBC Studios and ITV, has promoted Emily Powers to executive vp and head of Britbox North America.

      That follows the North American streamer announcing that Britbox president and CEO Soumya Sriraman will step down at the end of October. Powers, who has been helping oversee the upcoming launch of BritBox in Australia, most recently served as senior vp and commercial head and now adds editorial and creative control of the core North American business to her responsibilities.

    • Science

      • Trump’s Attacks on Science Have Scarred Our Public Institutions

        In less than four years, the Trump administration has mounted more than 150 attacks on science. “The harms and costs of the Trump administration’s attacks on science are staggering,” says the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS), a U.S. science-advocacy group. Nature, the prestigious British science journal, recently cataloged many of Trump’s assaults on science, saying some of the damage “could be permanent.”

    • Education

      • Open Education and Artificial Scarcity in Hard Times

        The sudden move to remote education by universities this year has forced the inevitable: the move to an online education. While most universities won’t be fully remote, having course materials online was already becoming the norm before the COVID-19 pandemic, and this year it has become mandatory for millions of educators and students. As academia recovers from this crisis, and hopefully prepares for the next one, the choices we make will send us down one of two paths. We can move towards a future of online education which replicates the artificial scarcity of traditional publishing, or take a path which fosters an abundance of free materials by embracing the principles of open access and open education.

        The well-worn, hefty, out-of-date textbook you may have bought some years ago was likely obsolete the moment you had a reliable computer and an Internet connection. Traditional textbook publishers already know this, and tout that they have embraced the digital era and have ebooks and e-rentals available—sometimes even at a discount. Despite some state laws discouraging the practice, publishers try to bundle their digital textbooks into “online learning systems,” often at the expense of the student. However, the costs and time needed to copy and send thousands of the digital textbooks themselves is trivial compared to their physical equivalent. 

    • Health/Nutrition

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Psychotherapy centre’s database [cracked], patient info held ransom

          The Helsinki-based company said that the [crackers] who [copied] the data made attempts to extort money in exchange for its return.

        • Security

          • EU imposes sanctions on GRU officers over ‘Fancy Bear’ cyberattacks

            The Council of the European Union has imposed sanctions on two Russian citizens and a military intelligence center due to cyberattacks targeting Germany’s parliament in 2015 and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) in 2018. This was announced in the latest volume of the Official Journal of the European Union. The United Kingdom announced plans to enforce these sanctions, as well. 

          • Free XSS Tools – Linux Hint

            Cross-Site Scripting, commonly known as XSS, is a type of vulnerability in which attackers remotely inject custom scripts on web pages. It commonly occurs in sites where data input parameters are improperly sanitized.

            Sanitization of inputs is the process of cleansing of the inputs, so the data inserted is not used to find or exploit security holes in a website or server.

            Vulnerable sites are either unsanitized or very poorly and incompletely sanitized. It is an indirect attack. The payload is indirectly sent to the victim. The malicious code is inserted on the website by the attacker, and then it becomes a part of it. Whenever the user (victim) visits the webpage, the malicious code is moved to the browser. Hence, the user is unaware of anything happening.

          • Google Chrome Update for Windows, Mac, Linux Fixes Critical Zero-Day Bug | Technology News

            Google Chrome stable channel users are receiving an update that rings along multiple security fixes. Update v86.0.4240.111 includes a fix for zero-day vulnerability CVE-2020-15999 discovered by a member in Google’s Project Zero team. This new zero-day vulnerability is reported to be a memory bug in the FreeType font rendering library. This was spotted being abused by a threat actor. Chrome users are recommended to install this latest update by going into the Help section.

            The tech giant has confirmed via a blog post that it has updated the Chrome stable channel to 86.0.4240.111 for Windows, Mac, and Linux users. This update will roll out for all users in the coming week. Chrome users can update to the latest version via the integrated update function inside the browser itself. Hit the three dots on the top right corner of the browser window and select Help > About Google Chrome. Here it will show you of any pending update, and after installation, it will ask you to relaunch the browser to finish the updating process.

          • Josh Bressers: Episode 218 – The past was a terrible place

            Josh and Kurt talk about change. Specifically we discuss how the past was a terrible place. Never believe anyone who tells you it was better. Part of a career now is learning how to learn. The things you learn today won’t be useful skills in a few years. The future is is always better than the past. Even in 2020.

          • Josh Bressers: Episode 219 – Chat with Larry Cashdollar

            Josh and Kurt have a chat with Larry Cashdollar. The three of us go way back. Larry has done some amazing things and he tells us all about it!

          • Josh Bressers: Episode 220 – Securing network time and IoT

            Josh and Kurt talk about Network Time Security (NTS) how it works and what it means for the world (probably not very much). We also talk about Singapore’s Cybersecurity Labelling Scheme (CLS). It probably won’t do a lot in the short term, but we hope it’s a beacon of hope for the future.

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • EFF Files Comment Opposing the Department of Homeland Security’s Massive Expansion of Biometric Surveillance

              EFF, joined by several leading civil liberties and immigrant rights organizations, recently filed a comment calling on the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to withdraw a proposed rule that would exponentially expand biometrics collection from both U.S. citizens and noncitizens who apply for immigration benefits and would allow DHS to mandate the collection of face data, iris scans, palm prints, voice prints, and DNA. DHS received more than 5,000 comments in response to the proposed rule, and five U.S. Senators also demanded that DHS abandon the proposal.    

              DHS’s biometrics database is already the second largest in the world. It contains biometrics from more than 260 million people. If DHS’s proposed rule takes effect, DHS estimates that it would nearly double the number of people added to that database each year, to over 6 million people. And, equally important, the rule would expand both the types of biometrics DHS collects and how DHS uses them.  

            • Victory! EFF Wins Appeal for Access to Wiretap Application Records

              Imagine learning that you were wiretapped by law enforcement, but couldn’t get any information about why. That’s what happened to retired California Highway Patrol officer Miguel Guerrero, and EFF sued on his behalf to get more information about the surveillance. This week, a California appeals court ruled in his case that people who are targets of wiretaps are entitled to inspect the wiretap materials, including the order application and intercepted communications, if a judge finds that such access would be in the interests of justice. This is a huge victory for transparency and accountability in California courts.

              This case arose from the grossly disproportionate volume of wiretaps issued by the Riverside County Superior Court in 2014 and 2015. In those years, wiretaps from that single, suburban county accounted for almost twice as many wiretaps as were issued in the rest of California combined, and almost one-fifth of all state and federal wiretaps issued nationwide. After journalists exposed Riverside County’s massive surveillance campaign, watchdog groups and even a federal judge warned that the sheer scale of the wiretaps suggested that the applications and authorizations violated federal law.

            • Facebook Poised to Face Antitrust Suit With FTC Decision Near

              Staff at the Federal Trade Commission support bringing a case, which could be filed in the coming weeks, the person said. A final decision about suing the company rests with the five-member commission. The commission met Thursday to discuss the case, according to the person, who declined to be named because the investigation is confidential.

              The FTC has been investigating whether Facebook violated antitrust laws for more than year, including whether its acquisitions of Instagram and WhatsApp were designed to eliminate emerging competitive threats. Facebook Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg was questioned by FTC officials in August as part of the investigation. A nationwide group of state attorneys general led by New York are also investigating the company.

    • Defence/Aggression

      • 10 Years After Iraq War Logs, It’s Impunity for War Criminals, War on Whistleblowers

        WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange and whistleblower Chelsea Manning have both paid a tremendous price for revealing U.S. and allied war crimes while the planners and perpetrators face no consequences.

      • MAS Returns to Power in Bolivia One Year After US-backed Coup

        MAS won by such a wide margin that it even surprised many of its supporters in Bolivia and around the world. According to official exit polls, Arce and his vice-presidential candidate David Choquehuanca won 52.4 percent of the vote compared to centre-right candidate Carlos Mesa, who garnered only 31.5 percent.

        In order to win in the first round, a candidate must secure more than 40 percent and a margin of at least 10 percent over the nearest rival to avoid a second round runoff. Arce won by an astonishing 20 percent.

      • Lisa Montgomery: A Victim of Incest, Child Prostitution and Rape Faces Execution

        The story of Lisa’s life reads like the script of a horror movie.

      • Law Enforcement Agencies That Acquire Military Gear Are More Likely To Kill People

        Correlation is not causation, but if you gear yourself up like you’re going to war, chances are you’re going to treat the people you’re supposed to serve as enemy combatants.

      • Former politician suspected of organizing contract killings of Krasnoyarsk mobsters arrested hours after transfer to house arrest

        During the afternoon of Thursday, October 22, businessman and former politician Anatoly Bykov was arrested in Krasnoyarsk, reports Interfax.

      • “We Are Asking for Justice”: #EndSARS Anti-Police Brutality Protests Grow as Nigerian Forces Kill 12

        Mass protests against police brutality continue in Nigeria after security forces shot and killed 12 peaceful protesters in Lagos this week. Video widely shared on social media shows security forces firing directly into a crowd of demonstrators in Lagos singing the country’s national anthem. Authorities have imposed a curfew to clamp down on the growing demonstrations, which started as a demand to disband the notorious police unit known as the Special Anti-Robbery Squad, or SARS, but which have since grown into a wider movement against police brutality and official impunity. “We are asking for justice. We are asking for our lives to be preserved, not to be killed arbitrarily by these officers of state,” says lawyer and human rights activist Aderonke Ige, who has taken part in the protests. We also speak with Omoyele Sowore, who says young people in the streets are also confronting other systemic issues. “They are fighting against police brutality, but they are also fighting against army brutality, they are fighting against unemployment, they are fighting against the incompetence and indifference of the regime that has been in power,” he says.

      • Nagorno-Karabakh: What’s at Stake in the Conflict Between Armenia & Azerbaijan?

        As fighting continues between Armenia and Azerbaijan over the disputed territory of Nagorno-Karabakh, we look at the roots of the conflict that has already killed at least 700 people since fighting began in late September and which threatens to escalate despite two ceasefire attempts brokered by Russia. Nagorno-Karabakh, which lies inside Azerbaijan but is controlled by ethnic Armenians, was the site of a bloody conflict in the wake of the collapse of the Soviet Union. This latest spike in violence is the worst since the 1990s and holds the risk of spiraling into a regional war, with Turkey openly supporting Azerbaijan while Russia has a mutual defense pact with Armenia. “You enter into the capital, Stepanakert, and the lights are off. The city is in complete darkness, and everyone is in bunkers and shelters,” says reporter Roubina Margossian, who has been reporting from the region. We also speak with UC Berkeley professor Stephan Astourian, author of the forthcoming book “At the Crossroads of the Armenian-Azerbaijani Conflict: History, Territory, Nationalisms.”

      • Nigerian Forces Kill 12 as Anti-Police Brutality Protests Grow

        Mass protests against police brutality continue in Nigeria after security forces shot and killed 12 peaceful protesters in Lagos this week. Video widely shared on social media shows security forces firing directly into a crowd of demonstrators in Lagos singing the country’s national anthem. Authorities have imposed a curfew to clamp down on the growing demonstrations, which started as a demand to disband the notorious police unit known as the Special Anti-Robbery Squad, or SARS, but which have since grown into a wider movement against police brutality and official impunity. “We are asking for justice. We are asking for our lives to be preserved, not to be killed arbitrarily,” says lawyer and human rights activist Aderonke Ige, who has taken part in the protests. We also speak with Omoyele Sowore, who says young people in the streets are also confronting other systemic issues. “They are fighting against police brutality, but they are also fighting against army brutality, they are fighting against unemployment, they are fighting against the incompetence and indifference of the regime that has been in power,” he says.

      • I Was in the Room Where It Happened: One Woman’s Perspective on “The Trial of the Chicago 7″

        Jerry and I had been living together for about 4 years. After the guilty verdict and contempt sentences the judge threw the defendants immediately into jail, and Anita Hoffman, Tasha Dellinger and I burned judges robes at a press conference underneath a huge banner — “We Are All Outlaws In the Eyes of America”— and helped organize a large protest. I spoke alongside attorney Bill Kunstler at Santa Barbara the day the citizens of that town burned down the Bank of America. So we were there, even if invisibly, as women often are.

        Although the actors were great, Sorkin failed to reflect the essence of many of the characters. He showed Jerry as a violence-provoking buffoon, one who let a female FBI agent get close to him in the midst of what we had put our hearts and souls into for much of the year. The only woman that was next to him the whole time was me. And I knew Jerry’s faults as well as anyone which is finally why I left him. But I also knew his strengths. He had tremendous courage. Not Rambo courage. It was ridiculous to see him in the film talking about molotov cocktails. He couldn’t even make a smoothie. But he was brave. He stood up 3 times to the House Unamerican Activities Committee (HUAC). All times in costume. First as a revolutionary war hero with tri-corner hat and all, then as an international guerrilla, and finally as Santa Claus. (It was Xmas time, and the headlines read HUAC BARS SANTA.) Many times bravery involves being able to put yourself out there, even if you are scared, to be outspoken and fight for what you think is right. Jerry had been a journalist and knew how to work the media to expand the movement. He developed theatrical politics and was a creative, brilliant tactician of protest. He helped lead the earlier protests against the war. It was largely his vision, as the Project Director, that guided the 1967 attempt to SHUT DOWN the Pentagon through both levitation and huge civil disobedience action against the war where 800 of us were arrested.

      • Ten Years Since WikiLeaks Published Iraq War Logs And Revealed ‘Small Change Of War’

        The Iraq War Logs published by WikiLeaks revealed 15,000 civilian deaths that were previously unknown. They also exposed torture that the United States military instructed officers to ignore.

        “In our release of these 400,000 documents about the Iraq War, the intimate detail of that war from the U.S. perspective,” WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange hoped to correct some of the attacks on the truth that occurred “before the war, during the war, and which [had] continued on since the war officially concluded.”

      • How Bolivia fights fascism – It takes more than the ballot box
    • Transparency/Investigative Reporting

    • Environment

      • The Elders Call for Surge in Global Cooperation to Combat ‘Current Disarray’ Set Off by Covid-19, Climate Crisis

        “Covid-19 has placed unprecedented strain on the multilateral system and cruelly exposed its failings. A fresh approach is urgently needed in 2021 with an unrelenting focus on justice and equality.”

      • Poor air inflicts billions of premature deaths in Asia

        Air pollution by tiny particles is among the world’s worst health risks. In South Asia, poor air is as bad as it gets.

      • Polling Shows Growing Climate Concern Among Americans. But Outsized Influence of Deniers Remains a Roadblock

        These kinds of disasters are becoming increasingly costly and impossible to ignore. Yet even as the American public becomes progressively more worried about the climate crisis, a shrinking but vocal slice of the country continues to dismiss these concerns, impeding efforts to address the monumental global challenge.

      • Water crisis looms in Taiwan in year of zero typhoons

        Without the abundant rainfall brought by the weather events, dams in Taiwan are seeing alarmingly low water levels at a time when water use is growing due to heightened hygiene awareness amid the coronavirus pandemic.

      • Rethinking Our Relationship With Fire

        The factors driving the extreme nature of these fires are three-fold: persistent climate patterns in the western U.S. are creating sustained periods of hot, dry weather that is conducive to fire; warm conditions are drying out fuels, creating explosive conditions when ignition occurs; and a growing number of homes and other structures in flammable forests and shrublands is increasing the danger of fires for human health and safety.

        The conflagrations this summer are not unexpected; fire and climate scientists have been predicting their likelihood for a number of years. Yet, the intensity, size and speed of recent fires and the weather conditions that they have created have surprised even the scientific community – in California, for example, the Creek Fire spawned tornado-like conditions.

      • ‘Frightening Milestone’: Scientists Sound Alarm Over Record Amount of Open, Iceless Sea in the Arctic

        This is the first time in recorded history that the Laptev Sea has not yet started freezing this late into October.

      • Energy

        • ‘What the Future Can Look Like’: Study Shows US Switch to 100% Renewables Would Save Hundreds of Billions Each Year

          “Too often we are told doing the right thing for the environment requires sacrifice and costs more. But we can actually make a better economy and save people money and a byproduct will be to cut emissions.”

        • The Elk, the Tourists and the Missing Coal Country Jobs

          Standing at the site of a long-abandoned, multimillion dollar industrial park in November 2016, U.S. Rep. Hal Rogers urged residents in southeastern Kentucky’s Bell County to envision the tourism potential for miles of open land.

          Joined by Matt Bevin, then Kentucky’s governor, and local politicians, Rogers pointed to the expanse of forestlands and mountaintops in the distance as he unveiled a $12.5 million federal grant for the Appalachian Wildlife Center. Rogers, a Republican who represents the state’s Appalachian region, had helped secure the money through the Abandoned Mine Land Pilot Program, a federal initiative designed to foster economic development around former coal mine sites in Kentucky and other states.

      • Overpopulation

        • It’s time environmentalists talked about the population problem

          Research suggests our species has far exceeded its fair share of the planetary bounty, and Brown is right to call for the global population to peak. It is high time others joined the chorus—not only other environmentalists, but those concerned with international development and human rights.

    • Finance

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • WATCH: Joe Biden and Donald Trump Face Off in Final Presidential Debate Before Election Day

        The candidates are expected to address Covid-19, climate change, and national security, among other topics.

      • Guns, Germs, and Smoke

        That was J.R. de Vera, one of two directors of UNITE-HERE!’s independent expenditure campaign to elect Biden and Harris in Reno, Nevada. UNITE-HERE! is a union representing 300,000 workers in the hospitality industry — that world of hotels and bars, restaurants and caterers. Ninety percent of its members are now laid off because of Trump’s bungling of the Covid-19 pandemic and many are glad for the chance to help get him out of the White House.

        “So some of you will want to stay in your hotel rooms and make phone calls today,” JR continues. Fifty faces fall in the 50 little Zoom boxes on my laptop screen. Canvassers would much rather be talking to voters at their doors than calling them on a phone bank. Still, here in the burning, smoking West, the union is as committed to its own people’s health and safety as it is to dragging Donald Trump out of office. So, for many of them, phone calls it will be.

      • AOC to Join Jane Fonda for Fire Drill Friday Focused on Planetary Imperative of November Victory

        “This is one of our most important calls in the lead-up to Election Day.”

      • ‘Would Be So Wild If Harrison Pulled This Off!’: Democratic Challenger Pulls Ahead of Lindsey Graham

        The development came after former President Barack Obama released an ad urging South Carolinians to vote for “my friend Jaime Harrison.”

      • Trumpist Republicans Latest Freakout A Total Self-Own, As They Reveal They Don’t Read What They Tweet

        I know, I know: Trumpists have decided that part of the culture war they need to create for the election is that “big tech” is somehow “censoring conservatives.” The narrative is complete bullshit, but the Trump cultists are so deeply bought into it that they’ll make themselves look absolutely ridiculous to further it. The latest is that a bunch of Republican officials apparently don’t understand Twitter and, in trying to continue this anti-tech culture war, instead demonstrated to the world that they can’t read.

      • A Trump Defeat Will Not End the Far-Right Threat

        For decades now, the Democratic political establishment has overseen the betrayal of progressive and working-class hopes and interests.

      • Wrecking America: How Trump’s Lawbreaking and Lies Betray All

        If you don’t want such a person as your neighbor, why would you want him as your President where he’d have exponentially more power to harm you and your family?

      • Cold War, coronavirus, climate change Putin’s speech at the annual Valdai Discussion Club, in a nutshell

        On Thursday, October 22, Russian President Vladimir Putin gave a speech at the annual Valdai Discussion Club via video link. He talked for about forty minutes and covered a wide range of topics, including the coronavirus pandemic, the post-Cold War order, and the existential trials and tribulations of our times. Here’s what he said, in brief.

      • Fascist Culture, Critical Pedagogy, and Resistance in Dark Times

        We have arrived at a moment in which two worlds are colliding and a history of the present is poised at a point when “possibilities are either realized or rejected but never disappear completely.”[1] First, there are the harsh and crumbling worlds of neoliberal globalization and its mobilizing passions that fuel different strands of fascism across the globe, including the United States.[2] Power is now enamored of amassing profits and capital and is increasingly addicted to a politics of white nationalism and racial cleansing. Second, there are growing counter movements, especially among young people, with their search for a new politics that can rethink, reclaim and reinvent a new understanding of democratic socialism, untainted by capitalism. [3] What is not in doubt is that something sinister and horrifying is happening to liberal democracies all over the globe. The global thrust towards democratization that emerged after World War II is giving way once again to authoritarian tyrannies. As alarming as the signs may be, the public cannot look away and allow the terrors of the unforeseen to be given free rein. For those who believe in democratic socialism we cannot allow the power of dreams and militant hopes to turn into ashes.

        We now live in a world that resembles a dystopian novel. The COVID-19 crisis created a surrealist nightmare that floods our screens and media with images of fear. We can no longer shake hands, embrace our friends, use public transportation, sit in a coffee shop, or walk down the street without experiencing anxiety and fear. What must be acknowledged is that the pandemic is more than a medical concept. It also refers to ideological and political plagues that emerged as a result of the irresponsible response of the U.S. and other countries such as Brazil, the United Kingdom, and India to the Covid-19 crisis. Marked by inept leadership rooted in a distrust of science and reason and a blind allegiance to market forces, what emerged over time was unimaginable suffering, massive deaths, and a further legitimation of lies and right-wing violence. The horror of the pandemic often blinds us to the fact that anti-democratic economic and political forces that have prioritized profits over human needs have grinded away at the social order for the last forty years.

      • Sending Trump to Hell

        Dante Alighieri has words for Donald J. Trump from the other side of death.

      • Putin says he personally helped secure Alexey Navalny’s release for treatment abroad

        Russian President Vladimir Putin has stated that he helped ensure opposition figure Alexey Navalny’s medical evacuation to Germany personally.

      • US Presidential Campaign Spectacle: Distracts from Essential Issues while Playing the Race Card

        There are other reasons why a coup is unlikely. Namely, most of the politically active public believe that they live in an exceptional democracy. This conviction is held despite the abysmal candidate choices they are given and the obscene mountains of money backing them. Surely, the ruling elites would not want to disabuse a quiescent citizenry of this delusion by allowing the naked coercive state to be exposed.

        Symmetry of the two-party duopoly

      • Trump Takes a Beating…in Montana

        It’s worth noting that this is the second major, national-level lawsuit Governor Bullock has won against Trump’s corrupt appointees in the last three weeks. Prior to the latest victory, Bullock had won his suit against the illegitimate actions of William Perry Pendley as head of the Bureau of Land Management that oversees millions of acres of public lands. As Federal Judge Brian Morris wrote in his ruling, Pendley “served unlawfully as the Acting BLM Director for 424 days” and enjoined him from exercising the authority of the agency’s director.

        While it’s nothing short of incredible that it took a Montana governor to fight and win these huge national issues, it’s worth remembering that it’s not just the lawsuits, but the effect of these victories, that deliver long-term and wide-reaching actions.

      • Pennsylvania’s New Vote-by-Mail Law Expands Access for Everyone Except the Poor

        Rem Em emigrated from Cambodia in 2002 to help take care of a grandchild with leukemia. Twelve years later, she became a U.S. citizen. It was one of the proudest moments of her life.

        Ever since, she’s made sure to vote, even though the native Khmer speaker isn’t fluent in English. She talks to her family, other Cambodian immigrants in her South Philadelphia neighborhood and community groups about the candidates and the races. Before she votes, she studies what her preferred candidate’s name looks like in English, noting as well the shapes that form the word “VOTE.”

      • Labor Prepares for Last-Minute General Strike If Trump Tries to Steal Election

        The 100,000-member MLK Labor Council, an AFL-CIO regional body of labor groups representing more than 150 unions in the Seattle, Washington, area, passed a resolution Wednesday that calls for a general strike if President Donald Trump does not respect the outcome of the November 3 election.

      • Monona County Officials Working To Remove Military-Style Truck With Campaign Flags From Voting Site
      • A Guide to In-Person Voting vs. Mail-In Voting

        In the rush to respond swiftly to the pandemic, every state has changed something about its voting process. If you plan on voting in person, your polling place may be different, and you’ll have to follow safety protocols. If you vote by mail, you’ll want to send in or drop off your ballot earlier than you normally would — ideally as soon as possible.

        But chances are it won’t significantly change your ability to vote and have your vote count. Despite worries around primary elections, the major problems have been isolated to a small number of counties in places that consistently have election issues, virus or not. For a snapshot of your state’s election administration performance, compared with other states, check out MIT’s Elections Performance Index. This database tracks how each state performed in the last election. Where yours ranked in the past could help you start to understand what things could be like in 2020.

      • Countless Disasters Have Occurred Since Last Debate. Will Trump Address Any?

        How bad could tonight’s debate between Donald Trump and Joe Biden be, really, compared to the last one? Remember that hot mess back in late September? Much of the news media, myself included, waxed ominous in the preamble about what would happen if Biden was unable to keep his cool in the face of the inevitable Trumpian onslaught.

      • We Need Joe Biden to Deliver the Knockout Trump Deserves Tonight

        Donald Trump is terrified of accountability. That’s why he walked out of a critical interview with Lesley Stahl for CBS News’ 60 Minutes on Tuesday, and that’s why he’s been attacking the moderator of tonight’s final presidential debate, veteran NBC White House correspondent Kristen Welker.

      • What the Berlin Wall Means to a New Generation

        In 1990, the oil baron and philanthropist Robert Hefner III sent a representative to Germany to purchase a section of the recently dismantled Berlin Wall. The portion he eventually acquired consists of three panels weighing 8,818 pounds, which stand 12 feet tall and 16 feet wide. Hefner and his wife, MeiLi, loaned the panels to the University of Virginia in 2014, where they stand today in a glass display case in the middle of campus. “The installation serves as the centerpiece of a year-long celebration of that unforgettable day, November 9, 1989,” writes John Kelly in the Fall 2014 edition of the university’s arts magazine, “when the whole world looked on to witness the power of the human spirit to triumph over oppression and to celebrate those unalienable rights which Thomas Jefferson so famously championed and cherished.”

      • Are You Prepared for an Election Disaster?

        Everyone should have a plan to vote this year, but people should also have a plan for what comes after that.

      • Nobody needs another Prigozhin ‘Putin’s chef’ reportedly wants to expand his political influence and maybe even win a seat in Russia’s Parliament

        Evgeny Prigozhin, the Russian catering oligarch who allegedly owns a private military company and an Internet troll empire, wants to become an elected politician and he plans to use the “Rodina” party as his ticket into the State Duma, two sources close to the Putin administration and one person inside Prigozhin’s own inner circle told Meduza. Asked about his own political ambitions, however, Prigozhin denies any wish to become a federal lawmaker, and he even has a special message for the people reading this very article.

      • Forcing the Vulnerable in Alabama to ‘Choose Between Voting and Staying Alive,’ SCOTUS Upholds Ban on Curbside Ballot Drop-Off

        “An outrageous 5-3 ruling that puts Alabama voters at risk.”

      • Poll Shows Most Who Voted Third-Party in 2016 Are Supporting Biden Over Trump in 2020

        The Democratic nominee holds a significant lead over the GOP incumbent among those who voted outside the major parties last time around.

      • DNI John Ratcliffe, a Trumpie Wingnut, Hilariously Blames Iran for Pro-Trump Proud Boy Email Spoof

        Anyone with the slightest common sense can see that Iran would be much better off with Biden, who is likely to try to re-implement the 2015 nuclear deal.

      • Iran Denies ‘Malign and Dangerous’ US Allegations of Election Interference as Critics Note Dubious Nature of Claims

        “Note that this is the same administration who has twice in the last 12 months nearly gone to war with Iran.”

      • With 220,000+ Dead From Covid-19 on His Watch, Trump Says ‘Not Much’ He Would Do Differently

        “Now 225,000 dead Americans, virus spread raging, millions out of work, an economy spiraling down, and Trump today says he’d do the same things all over again.”

      • Poll: Trump’s Reelection Rating Is Lowest for Incumbent President Since 1992

        A majority of American voters don’t believe President Donald Trump deserves to win reelection in this year’s presidential race, according to a poll published this week.

      • Supreme Court Upholds Alabama’s Ban on Curbside Ballot Drop-Off

        Offering no explanation for their ruling, the five conservative justices who hold the majority on the U.S. Supreme Court sided with Alabama state officials Wednesday night in a decision banning curbside voting in the state.

      • Don’t Blame the Moderator. Presidential Debates Are Set Up to Be a Charade.

        Assuming he doesn’t chicken out, Donald Trump will take part in his second 2020 presidential debate tonight. His opponents will be Joe Biden, his own record, the notion of truth, and any sense of decency.

      • QAnon Is Becoming a Republican Dog Whistle

        QAnon may be losing some of its online platforms—but the conspiracy theory is increasingly being enabled by the Republican Party.

      • Trump Posts “60 Minutes” Interview, Complains About “Tough Questions” Throughout

        President Donald Trump posted a full-length video of his “60 Minutes” interview with CBS News’s Lesley Stahl on Thursday, following through on a promise he made the day before.

      • Cancel Culture
      • Trump administration has known for weeks that Iran, Russia hacked local governments, officials say

        At a news conference Wednesday, FBI Director Christopher Wray and National Intelligence Director John Ratcliffe alleged that Iranian intelligence used the hacked information for a recent campaign of emails that purported to be from the white nationalist group the Proud Boys, which were sent to intimidate Florida Democratic voters. They added that Russia was also working to influence the election.

        The two intelligence officials said that Iran’s intention wasn’t entirely clear but that one goal was to sow chaos and undermine confidence in the election. Both officials said it would hurt the Trump campaign if a white nationalist group was exposed as having sought to bully Democrats.

      • Twitter and White House deny claims that researcher [cracked] Trump’s account

        A security researcher claims he [cracked] President Donald Trump’s Twitter account earlier this month, guessing that his password was “maga2020!” and possibly posting a tweet where Trump appeared to take a satirical article seriously. Dutch newspaper de Volkskrant and magazine Vrij Nederland reported the news earlier today, citing screenshots and interviews with the researcher, Victor Gevers.

        But when reached for comment, both Twitter and the White House vigorously denied the claim.

      • Did a Security Researcher Really Access Trump’s Twitter Account?

        The alleged break-in was done by Victor Gevers, a security researcher who’s uncovered vulnerabilities and unsecured databases before. He told Dutch newspaper De Volkskrant that he logged into the president’s account last Friday in order to test whether it was secure. And according to him, it wasn’t.

      • Dutch Man Claims He [Cracked] Trump’s Twitter With the Extremely Clever Password ‘Maga2020!’

        According to Gevers, two days after he rang the alarm, was contacted by the Secret Service, who thanked him for bringing the issue to their attention. Two-step verification was then implemented on Trump’s Twitter account.

      • [Repeat] The New Humanitarian | Lake Van: An overlooked and deadly migration route to Turkey and Europe

        On the night of 27 June, at least 61 people died in a shipwreck on a lake in Van, a Turkish province bordering Iran. The victims were asylum seekers, mostly from Afghanistan, and the wreck shed light on a dangerous and often overlooked migration route used by people trying to move west from the border to major cities, such as Ankara and Istanbul, or further beyond to Europe.

        Turkey hosts the largest refugee population in the world, around four million people. A significant majority – 3.6 million – are Syrians. Afghans are the second largest group, but since 2018 they have been arriving irregularly in Turkey and then departing for Greece in larger numbers than any other nationality.

        Driven by worsening conflict in their country and an economic crisis in Iran, the number of Afghans apprehended for irregularly entering Turkey increased from 45,000 in 2017 to more than 200,000 in 2019. At the same time, the number of Afghans arriving in Greece by sea from Turkey increased from just over 3,400 to nearly 24,000.

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • EFF Urges Vallejo’s Top Officials to End Unconstitutional Practice of Blocking Critics on Social Media

        San Francisco—The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) told the City of Vallejo that its practice of blocking people and deleting comments on social media because it doesn’t like their messages is illegal under the First Amendment, and demanded that it stop engaging in such viewpoint discrimination, unblock all members of the public, and let them post comments.In a letter today to Vallejo Mayor Bob Sampayan and the city council written on behalf of Open Vallejo, an independent news organization, and the Vallejo community at large, EFF said that when the government creates a social media page and uses it to speak to the public about its policies and positions, the page becomes a government forum. Under the First Amendment, the public has a right to receive and comment on messages in the forum. Blocking or deleting users’ comments based on the viewpoints expressed is unconstitutional viewpoint discrimination.“Courts have made clear that government officials, even the president of the United States, can’t delete or block comments because they dislike the viewpoints conveyed,” said Naomi Gilens, Frank Stanton Legal Fellow at EFF. “Doing so is unconstitutional. We’ve asked that all official social media pages of Vallejo officials and pages of all city offices and departments unblock all members of the public and allow them to post comments.”Open Vallejo discovered the practice of deleting comments and blocking users during an investigation of the social media practices of council members, other city officials, and the City of Vallejo itself.EFF sided with members of the public blocked by President Trump on Twitter who sued him and members of his communications team in July 2017. We filed an amicus brief arguing that it’s common practice for government offices large and small to use social media to communicate to and with the public. All members of the public, regardless of whether government officials dislike their posts or tweets, have a right to receive and comment on government messages, some of which may deal with safety directions during fires, earthquakes, or other emergencies.The district court agreed, ruling that President Trump’s practice violates the First Amendment. A federal appeals court upheld the ruling. Two other federal Courts of Appeals have ruled in separate cases that viewpoint discrimination on government social media pages is illegal.We urge Vallejo to bring its social media practices in line with the Constitution, and have requested that city officials respond to our demand by Nov. 6.For the letter:https://www.eff.org/document/city-vallejo-demand-letterFor more on social media and the First Amendment:https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2017/11/when-officials-tweet-about-government-business-they-dont-get-pick-and-choose-who

      • How to deal with free speech on social media

        Elsewhere, governments have also used social media companies to go beyond the law, often without public debate. In London the Metropolitan Police requests that they take down legal, but troubling, posts. In June France’s Constitutional Council struck down a deal between the government and the tech companies because it curbed free speech—an initiative that is sure to be revisited after Mr Paty’s murder. Citing Western precedents, more authoritarian governments in countries such as Singapore expect the tech firms to restrict “fake news”—potentially including irksome criticism from opponents.

        This might not matter were the networks less dominant. If people could switch as easily as they change breakfast cereal, they could avoid rules they dislike. But switching is like giving up your mobile-phone number: it cuts you off from your friends. Social networks have also become so central to distributing news and opinion that they are, says Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s founder, a “town square”. If you want to be part of the conversation you have no choice but to be there, soapbox in hand.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

      • Cuomo’s NY Broadband Pledge Under Audit After Coming Up Short

        Back in 2015, NY Governor Andrew Cuomo unveiled a Broadband for All pledge the state proclaimed would invest $500 million to ensure statewide broadband access by 2018. The effort was to be funded largely by legal settlements struck with banks after the last recession, with dollar-per-dollar matching pledges by companies promising to deliver speeds of at least 100 Mbps down, 25 Mbps up across the state.

      • Congress, With Nothing Important On Its Hands, Seeks To Rush Through Nomination Of Anti-230 FCC Commissioner

        You might think that Congress has more important issues on its hands, with a pandemic still going on, issues around disinformation and the election, massive fires still burning in parts of the US, a record number of hurricanes pounding the south… but it appears that Congress thinks the most pressing issue is gutting Section 230. As you’ll recall, right after FCC Commissioner Michael O’Rielly made some generally straightforward statements about how the 1st Amendment wouldn’t let the government interfere with social media platforms, Trump informed O’Rielly that his nomination to stay at the FCC had been rescinded.

      • It’s Opposite Day At The FCC: Rejects All Its Own Legal Arguments Against Net Neutrality To Claim It Can Be The Internet Speech Police

        As was expected following Ajit Pai’s announcement that the FCC would be moving forward with the rulemaking process to reinterpret Section 230 of the Communications Act in response to a petition from NTIA — instigated by the President’s unconstitutional executive order, which came about because Twitter suggested people research the facts,following Trump tweeting blatant disinformation regarding elections and ballots — the FCC’s General Counsel Tom Johnson has released the FCC’s legal explanation for how it could possibly have authority here.

    • Monopolies

      • Minecraft will require a Microsoft account to play in 2021

        Minecraft players have been able to play without a Microsoft account for the past six years that the company has owned the game, but that will change in 2021, the official Minecraft blog announced yesterday. Players who own the original version of the game and do not switch to a Microsoft account will be unable to play.

        The game has existed in two separately developed versions since its 2011 launch on consoles. Previously, the original Minecraft: Java Edition used Mojang accounts, while Minecraft: Bedrock Edition, the name for the console and Windows store version of the game, used Microsoft accounts. After this change, the accounts will be the same, but there’s still no crossplay: you still won’t be able to play with friends using the other version of the game.

      • TikTok will now tell you why it removed your video

        But today, TikTok is announcing that it will give you at least a vague idea of why your video is gone, by naming the specific policy it fell afoul of. That’s pretty similar to how other companies do it.

        As before, you’ll be able to submit an appeal. Maybe you’ll have some idea what you’re appealing now. TikTok says it’s been experimenting with these notifications for a few months, and that appeals have actually gone down by 14 percent. (I guess they did know what they’d done.)

      • Uber, Lyft Ordered to Comply With California Labor Law

        The appeals court upheld a lower-court ruling ordering the companies to comply with Assembly Bill 5, which took effect in January and would force the companies to reclassify their drivers as employees — and provide the benefits that status confers.

      • U.S. Accuses Google of Illegally Protecting Monopoly

        In a much-anticipated lawsuit, the agency accused Google of locking up deals with giant partners like Apple and throttling competition through exclusive business contracts and agreements.

        Google’s deals with Apple, mobile carriers and other handset makers to make its search engine the default option for users accounted for most of its dominant market share in search, the agency said, a figure that it put at around 80 percent.

      • Twitter suspended Trump campaign press secretary after tweet about mail-in voting issue: report

        Hogan Gidley was temporarily suspended after he tweeted about receiving an envelope in the mail addressed to someone named Daniel. He attached a screenshot of the envelope marked “Your Official Ballot.”

      • Patents

        • Not a toothless prohibition: Even implicit step of treatment by surgery makes method claim unpatentable under the EPC

          An opposition was filed and eventually withdrawn against the patent. However, the Opposition Division decided to go ahead with the opposition proceedings nevertheless, which it is allowed to do if it is likely that the patent will be limited or revoked even “without further assistance from the opponent(s)” (see the EPO Guidelines for Examination, Part D-VII, 5.2 and 5.3). The patent was eventually revoked for violation of Art. 53(c) EPC. The patentee appealed.

          The Board of Appeal first underscores that independent claim 1 does not contain any feature explicitly involving a method of treatment by surgery. However, the Board explains (by reference to the Enlarged Board’s decision in G 1/07) that Art. 53(c) EPC also excludes the granting of patents that involves such a step even implicitly. If a surgical method of treatment is an essential feature of the invention (whether implicitly or explicitly), the invention is excluded from being patentable under Art. 53(c) EPC.

          [...]

          This decision must be traced back to the Enlarged Board of Appeal’s ruling in G 1/07 (Treatment by surgery/MEDI-PHYSICS), directly referred to in the decision. G 1/07 enshrined the principle that a method, which “encompasses an invasive step representing a substantial physical intervention on the body which requires professional medical expertise to be carried out and which entails a substantial health risk even when carried out with the required professional care and expertise”, is not patentable under Art. 53(c) EPC. G 1/07 also set forth that this issue cannot be solved by simply omitting the surgical treatment step from the claim, when it remains an essential feature that is necessary to carry out the invention.

          Two aspects still distinguish the decision at hand from G 1/07.

          First, the patent claim in the decision at hand differs from the one at stake in G 1/07 in that the step of treatment by surgery was at no point explicitly mentioned in the patent claim. Only the subsequent claim interpretation performed by the Board showed that the claim necessarily encompasses that step. The exclusion from patentability thus cannot be circumvented by hiding the problematic feature in the description, since the claims are always interpreted by reference to the description.

        • FFII preparing constitutional complaint against Unified Patent Court Agreement

          “The members of parliament we contacted seem to be receptive, some of them already know the issues that we have raised. I have the impression that the key political group to convince will be the liberals of FDP. That is the opposition party whose support is needed to get the required 2/3 majority for ratification of the UPCA.”

          In your objections to the speedy ratification procedure in Germany, you have pointed at the importance of four EPO cases pending before the Federal Constitutional Court. Could you explain why the outcome of these cases is relevant?
          “The EPO decisions to administer the Unitary Patent cannot be brought to court. This is in direct violation of the rule of law principle, which is enshrined in Art 2 TFEU and in most national constitutions. This principle is heavily debated at EU level at the
          moment because of two problematic countries (Poland and Hungary).

          For patent applicants, it means they cannot sue the EPO for a refusal to grant. There were amendments in 2012 by a member of the Green party of the European Parliament to make the EPO responsible for acts concerning the UPC, but those amendments were not adopted.

          For others, it means there is no possibility to bring the EPO to court for maladministration. When FFII Spain opposed the Amazon One Click Gift patent back in 2012, our Spanish representative was refused a live translation in Spanish, the EPO only providing a choice between three languages. We looked at bringing the EPO to court for language discrimination, but came to the conclusion that the EPO had diplomatic immunity, and cannot be brought to court for maladministration.

        • St. Jude Medical, LLC v. Snyders Heart Valve LLC (Fed. Cir. 2020)

          Both parties appealed the Board’s decision in IPR-106, Snyders on the grounds that the ’601 patent anticipated claims 1, 2, 6, and 8 of the ’782 patent and St. Jude on the ground that claim 28 of the ’782 patent was not anticipated by the ’601 patent. Snyders argued that the Board had made three errors of claim construction, but the Federal Circuit’s decision found that one of these was in error and was sufficient for the panel to reverse the Board’s anticipation determination. The construed term was “how the frame is sized and shaped,” which Snyders argued was incorrect because “it covers frames sized and shaped for installation with the native valve removed, rather than only with the troubled native valve remaining in place.” With regard to this limitation the Board found that “‘[t]he claim language does not require the frame be sized and shaped for insertion into a damaged heart valve,’ but ‘only that the frame is sized and shaped for insertion in a position between the upstream region and the downstream region.’” This was error in the panel’s view because the Board did not consider the further disclosure in the ’601 patent that the native valve was required to be replaced, which the challenged ’782 patent claims expressly did not require. The panel opinion found support for the argument that structural features of the claimed artificial valve was consistent with this lack of a requirement for native valve removal in the plain meaning of the claim language, as well as express disclosure to that effect in the ’782 specification. Specifically, the specification disclosed that “the frame is sized and shaped for insertion between the plurality of cusps C of the damaged heart valve in a position between an upstream region and a downstream region” (emphasis in opinion). The significance for the Court was that this language indicated that the term “sized and shaped” “is not meant to refer only to placement in a position between the upstream and downstream regions, but also to fitting between the cusps of the intact native valve.” This interpretation is consistent, according to the opinion, with further disclosure in the ’782 specification of the benefit of not needing to remove the native heart valve as an improvement over the prior art and in particular the deficiencies in the ’601 patent in this regard. Because the ’601 patent does not meet the “size and shape” limitation as construed by the Federal Circuit, the panel reversed the Board’s determination that the ’782 patent claims were invalid for anticipation.

          Turning to St. Jude’s grounds for appeal, the panel first addressed the argument that the Board had erred in not finding the ’601 patent anticipated claim 28, directed to a system for inserting the claimed heart valve. The panel rejected St. Jude’s argument (related to whether the ’601 patent disclosed the “manipulator” recited in claim 28 of the ’782 patent) because “[c]laim 28 contains exactly the same ‘sized and shaped’ limitation for the valve as does claim 1, requiring a valve meeting that limitation (among others) in combination with an instrument used to install the valve.” Accordingly, claim 28 is not anticipated by the ’601 patent for the same reason the Court held that claims 1, 2, 6, and 8 of the ’782 patent were not, and affirmed the Board’s decision on that basis. The Court also rejected St. Jude’s argument that the Board erred in not finding claims 1, 2, 6, 8, and 28 of the ’782 patent invalid for obviousness over the asserted art. The Court’s basis for this decision was that the grounds for the Board’s decision were a factual determination regarding “whether a skilled artisan would be motivated to make the proposed combination to arrive at the claimed invention.” And the panel held that St. Jude had not satisfied its burden to show that the Board did not have substantial evidence supporting its decision. Because the Federal Circuit must give deference to factual determinations of the Board, unless an appellant can show a lack of substantial evidence, the Court affirmed the Board’s decision that the cited references did not render obvious the challenged claims of the ’782 patent.

      • Trademarks

        • The threat to trust: Will the certification mark be a long-term victim of the coronavirus?

          Pandemics may have long-term consequences. One such early outbreak, the sixth century Plague of Justinian, severely weakened both the Sasanian Empire and the Byzantine Empire, which in turn contributed a century later to the rapid expansion of Islam. The death toll from the Black Death of the 14th century decimated the agricultural working population in Europe and hastened the demise of feudalism.

          The coronavirus will hopefully not come anywhere close to the baleful effect of these pandemics. But even after the medical and economic damage of the coronavirus is ultimately brought under control, harmful side effects may linger, even, perhaps, for IP. In particular, in tandem with the deterioration of public trust over the course of the pandemic, the status of the certification mark might be impaired.

          I know– few of us rely on certification marks for our livelihood. When was the last time that you filed an application for a certification mark? “Can’t remember”. When was the last time that you saw an advertisement for the owner of a certification mark? — “Can’t remember”, much less when you last heard a radio advertisement for a certification mark? — “Can’t remember”. But certification marks play an essential role in enabling consumers to rely on the mark as a badge of safety and standards, sparing us from the transaction cost in trying to verify the certification function by other, less efficient means.

          [...]

          A central part of this culture of trust is certification, embodied in a certification mark. Should the public come out of the pandemic with a further diminished sense of trust, to the extent that the view ultimately takes hold that certification is not feasible, then the certification mark will have no raison d’etre. It is against this background that this Kat understood the felt need by UL to advertise itself.

      • Copyrights

        • FLVTO.biz Petitions SCOTUS To Hear Jurisdiction Argument In Stream-Ripping Lawsuit

          While the music industry’s war on stream-ripping sites — sites that have perfectly legitimate and legal uses — continues, it’s true that this is a war in which one side has almost universally surrendered. Facing legal opposition with well-funded industry groups, most stream-ripping sites simply close up shop when staring down litigation. But Russia-based FLVTO.biz has been an exception. We first wrote about the site’s decision to defend itself back in early 2019. At that point, the owner of the site, Tofig Kurbanov, had successfully argued in a Florida court that the United States legal system had no jurisdiction over his site, given that it operates in Russia and makes no effort to entice American patronage.

        • French Three-Strikes Anti-Piracy Law Mostly Benefited American Movies

          New research into the effects of the French anti-piracy law Hadopi shows that its introduction failed to significantly increase box-office revenue. It did, however, cause a shift in people’s movie preferences. The interest of moviegoers in U.S. films increased, at the expense of other content, including French productions.

        • Logs Seized From F-Secure’s VPN Must Be Destroyed, Court Rules

          In January 2019, Finland’s National Bureau of Investigation seized logging data from F-Secure’s FREEDOME VPN service to investigate an alleged crime. After a prolonged legal process, the Helsinki Court of Appeal has now ruled that the seizure of the logs was illegal. As a result, all of the seized logs must be destroyed.

10.22.20

Links 23/10/2020: ‘Groovy Gorilla’ Everywhere in the News

Posted in News Roundup at 10:17 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Audiocasts/Shows

    • Kernel Space

      • Linux 5.10 ARM64 Has A “8~20x” Performance Optimization Forgotten About For Two Years – Phoronix

        Last week was the main set of ARM 64-bit architecture updates for Linux 5.10 while today a second batch of changes were sent in for this kernel. That first round had the Memory Tagging Extension (MTE) and Pointer Authentication support among other improvements while this secondary pull has two notable performance optimizations.

        First up is a performance optimization that the Arm developers acknowledge was seemingly forgotten about for some two years. Back in 2018 was a memory management speed-up by around 20x for the mremap system call on large memory regions. That work was merged but the feature never enabled for the ARM64 Linux kernel builds until now.

      • Kernel 5.9: Onwards and upwards

        With version 5.9 of the Linux Kernel now released, it is time to, once again, review Collabora’s contributions to this release which contains many improvements, primarily in hardware support, multimedia, graphics, testing and continuous contributions to other subsystems.

        The importance of software maintenance has been highlighted in the last week with the discovery of a high-severity Bluetooth flaw. Whilst some reports have suggested that 5.9 contains the required fixes, many articles have been updated to reflect the fact that this is not the case. The required changes should be available as part of the 5.10 kernel when it is released and the kernel stable branches have picked them up. Many distributions are also now providing security releases covering this issue, we advise that you look out for (and apply) security fixes from your distribution of choice.

      • It’s in the Air: The Corsair HS70 Wireless Headset & Linux

        Looking more widely at headset support in Linux, what can we expect? Unfortunately there’s a dearth of information, especially once you get away from the most popular models. Analog headsets will of course be fine (the joys of analog!), and Bluetooth should also work well, as long as you have that working. Though note that some Bluetooth audio devices prefer mobile, like some Jabra wireless earbuds that have spotty records of connecting to computers in general.

        Otherwise, though, there lacks any central database or way to find out what the support is like for a device you are interested in. You’ll have to rely on your search skills, maybe GitHub, and probably sorting out random forum or Reddit posts to figure out any issues. The Arch Wiki tends to be a great hardware reference, but here there’s just a page for Bluetooth headsets.

        These days it seems quite likely that your random USB audio device, even wireless, has a decent chance of working. But maybe not, and if you rely on any features that may require software or special drivers (controlling the device beyond volume, sound virtualization, etc.) it is still is a bit of a guessing game. At least HeadsetControl provides an indirect way of knowing if something will work, as they list many models of headsets which I assume means all the standard audio works already. When in doubt, make sure you check that return policy!

      • Graphics Stack

        • The Most Innovative ~$50 Graphics Card For Linux Users

          This ~$50 USD graphics card is open-source friendly, can drive four display outputs simultaneously, passively cooled, and can fit in a PCI Express x1 slot. It’s a unique card offering good value especially for those Linux users wanting open-source friendly hardware.

          Earlier this year ASUS announced the GT710-4H-SL-2GD5. In the months since we didn’t hear anything more about it given the pandemic but recently saw it became available via Internet retailers and picked one up for testing.

    • Applications

      • KeePassXC 2.6.2 Released with ‘Always on Top’ Option

        KeePassXC, KeePass Cross-Platform Community Edition, released a new update today with new menu option to keep window always on top.

      • 5 of the Best Linux Text Editors

        A text editor is very important for any operating system. Be it taking quick notes, drafting a document, or even coding a script, it is the best tool for the job. For Linux, you’d be amazed by just how many different text editors there are out there. To help you decide which text editor you want to use, here we cover the best text editors on Linux.

        [...]

        Linux Text editors are serious business. Everyone has a strong opinion about what they feel is the best one. None of them are wrong, of course. Each editor has its strengths and weaknesses, and even if none of the text editors in the above list interest you, there are still many alternatives around, like the CherryTree Notepad, which didn’t make the list above.

    • Instructionals/Technical

    • Games

      • Hunt down other players in the competitive local multiplayer game Unspottable out now | GamingOnLinux

        Unspottable has you and friends all blended together amongst a crowd, and you each need to find the other to take them down. It’s highly amusing and out now.

      • Explore an open world with dynamic turn-based battles in Tenderfoot Tactics out now | GamingOnLinux

        I honestly feel like I need to take an entire week off just to play Tenderfoot Tactics, a mix of turn-based battling and open-world exploration that’s out now. Note: key provided by the developer.

        Tenderfoot Tactics is a very strange mix of games. The open-world exploration is real-time, and it blends in party-based RPG mechanics with each of your goblins having levels, equipment, abilities and the option to evolve into something bigger and then when you get into the combat it flips that into a turn-based tactical battler. It works together so amazingly well though.

        “For a generation, the terrible Fog – one vast, voiceless, and cruel spirit – has been eating the once-thick forests of the mainland. Now, with nowhere left to call home, and granted magic by the friendly spirits of the archipelago, one small party of would-be adventurers sets out. Find a way to save the many goblin towns of the rocky coast, discover the truth of the Fog, and, if possible, put an end to it.”

      • Avoid getting cut up in an intergalactic slaughterhouse, Disc Room is out now

        Small rooms, lots of spinning blades – what could possibly go wrong? Disc Room is insane and I absolutely love it.

        [...]

        Just note, that it’s made with Game Maker Studio which continues to have some weird dependency problems with libcurl. On Arch Linux for example, you can install the libcurl-compat package and then launch it like this…

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • Plasma on the Edge

          You probably have heard the news by now that Microsoft have released the Linux version of their new Chromium-based Edge web browser. Of course I’ve been waiting for this day ever since they announced the switcheroo to Chromium in order to bring Plasma Browser Integration to Edge users. It took Microsoft almost two decades to offer another web browser to a Unixoid desktop and this time around it’s based on KDE’s legacy – what a time to be alive!

          You can already use Plasma Browser Integration just fine with Edge by installing it from the Chrome web store. Until Plasma 5.21 is out, however, it will only see it as yet another Chromium, meaning that KRunner, media controls, and so on might not map to the correct browser window or show only a generic icon.

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • Things I do: Proposal to add build graph output to GNU Make

          In 2015 I worked as a consultant at a large company in Lund. My position was with the build team and one of our responsibilities was managing and maintaining the build system for their Android based phones.

          The problem I was tasked with solving was the fact that running ‘make’ for a product after a successful build resulted in a lot of stuff being rebuilt unnecessarily.

          A stock Android build tree behaved nicely: a second run of ‘make’ only produced a line about everything being up-to-date. But the company products were taking a good 15 minutes for a rebuild even if nothing had been changed.

          The Android build system works by including all recipes to be built (programs / libraries / etc) using the GNU Make include directive, so that you end up with one giant Makefile that holds all rules for building the platform. Possibly to avoid the problems laid out in the paper Recursive make considered harmful.

        • Sébastien Wilmet: gedit crowdfunding

          The gedit text editor has a long history of development, it has been created in 1998 at the beginnings of GNOME. So it is one of the oldest GNOME application still alive and usually installed by default with Linux distributions that provide GNOME as their desktop environment.

          It is this – the fact that many Linux users know and have gedit installed – that motivates me to improve it, to make it a top notch core application. It is not an easy undertaking though, the codebase is old and large, and there are several underlying software components (libraries) that are critical for the main functioning of gedit.

    • Distributions

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Ubuntu 20.10 on Raspberry Pi delivers the full Linux desktop and micro clouds

          Canonical today released Ubuntu 20.10 with optimised Raspberry Pi images for desktop in support of learners, inventors, educators and entrepreneurs, bringing the world’s most open platform to the world’s most accessible hardware.

          “In this release, we celebrate the Raspberry Pi Foundation’s commitment to put open computing in the hands of people all over the world,” said Mark Shuttleworth, CEO at Canonical. “We are honoured to support that initiative by optimising Ubuntu on the Raspberry Pi, whether for personal use, educational purposes or as a foundation for their next business venture.”

          The Raspberry Pi 2, 3, and 4 join a very long list of x86 and ARM devices certified with Ubuntu, the operating system (OS) best known for its public cloud and desktop offerings. Dell, HP and Lenovo all certify PCs with Ubuntu Desktop, which is also the most widely used OS on the AWS, Microsoft Azure, Google, IBM and Oracle clouds.

          Ubuntu 20.10 also includes LXD 4.6 and MicroK8s 1.19 for resilient micro clouds, small clusters of servers providing VMs and Kubernetes on demand at the edge, for remote office, branch office, warehouse and distribution oriented infrastructure.

        • Ubuntu MATE 20.10 Release Notes

          If you want bug fixes :bug:, kernel updates :corn:, a new web camera control :movie_camera:, and a new indicator :point_right: experience, then 20.10 is for you :tada:. Ubuntu MATE 20.10 will be supported for 9 months until July 2021. If you need Long Term Support, we recommend you use Ubuntu MATE 20.04 LTS.

        • Build a Raspberry Pi Desktop with an Ubuntu heart | Ubuntu

          Since the Raspberry Pi Foundation began its mission, users have been using their boards to run everything in their lives. Whether that’s making DIY devices, learning to code or building products, it was made possible by Raspberry Pis. But running a full-featured, LTS desktop that can handle the expectations of everyday users, without technical knowledge, wasn’t really possible. Until recently.

          The Raspberry Pi 4 debuted with the graphics, RAM and connectivity needed for a Linux workstation. Users finally had the hardware to make a Raspberry Pi into a viable primary PC. But there were still issues. Most importantly, a lot of the desktop options either required a non-zero amount of technical knowledge or weren’t suited for long term use. Usually because of a lack of upstream support or running unmaintained, niche software.

          Canonical, the company that publishes Ubuntu, is and continues to be a long term fan of the Raspberry Pi Foundation. Together, our missions to make technology more accessible to people all of the world aligns, and both organisations understand the value of an active and trusting community. So, when the Raspberry Pi 4 launched with the capabilities to run a full-fat Ubuntu Desktop, we didn’t blink.

        • Ubuntu 20.10 Flavours Released, This is What’s (Mostly) New

          Arriving alongside the final Ubuntu 20.10 release are new builds from Ubuntu’s family of flavours, which includes Kubuntu, Ubuntu MATE and Ubuntu Budgie.

          Rather than publish individual posts for each flavour I decided to post this instead: a concise roundup limited to just two paragraphs per flavour.

          Short though that sounds I still present flavour’s key changes and new features, plus give you the download links you need if you want to try a flavour out for yourself.

        • Ubuntu Linux 20.10 ‘Groovy Gorilla’ is Here With Renewed Raspberry Pi Focus – Slashdot
        • Ubuntu 20.10 now supports Raspberry Pi » Linux Magazine

          Ubuntu 20.10 is the first release from Canonical to support the Raspberry Pi single board computer.

          For any Linux admin who’s been looking to deploy single board computers for various purposes, there’s a new (while at the same time old) player in the Raspberry Pi mix—Ubuntu 20.10. Groovy Gorilla is the first official Ubuntu release to not only be optimized for the Raspberry Pi as a server distro, but as a full-blown desktop as well.

          To make this even more appealing, Ubuntu 20.10 will include the likes of LXD 4.6 and MicroK8s for the easy deployment of resilient micro clouds, small clusters of servers providing virtual machines, and Kubernetes on demand at the edge.

          Any Raspberry Pi 4 board with 4GB or 8GB of RAM can be deployed with Ubuntu Desktop or Server. And this isn’t a stripped-down version of the platform, it’s the full Monty. Canonical has put in a ton of work to optimize Ubuntu for Raspberry Pi. According to the Ubuntu PR Machine, “With this release, Ubuntu is optimized for Raspberry Pi, giving users of all levels and capabilities the access to Linux and microcloud technologies.”

        • What’s new in Ubuntu 20.10 – YouTube

          In this video, we are looking at what’s new in Ubuntu 20.10.

        • 10 Things to Do After Installing Ubuntu 20.10

          A new Ubuntu release means a new rundown of the most important post-install procedures you should perform.

          This guide is (as always) aimed at those who are new to – or less experienced with – Ubuntu. Each item aims to enhance or improve the default Ubuntu 20.10 experience, not rip it out or remould it

          I write a new “things to do…” list for each Ubuntu release rather than just update the old one. Why do I do that? Because the steps often change. Issues that needed post-install futzing last time may now be fixed.

        • Essential Guide: How to Upgrade to Ubuntu 20.10 from Ubuntu 20.04

          The Ubuntu upgrade process is fairly straightforward and shouldn’t take that long providing you have a semi-decent internet connection.

          There are a few things to keep in mind before rushing into an upgrade though so do pay close attention to the steps laid out in this tutorial.

        • Ubuntu 20.10 is Now Available to Download

          The official release announcement hasn’t been sent to the Ubuntu mailing list, but Ubuntu 20.10 desktop .iso images are up on the release server, ready for you (and everyone else) to download.

          Ubuntu 20.10 ‘Groovy Gorilla’ is a short-term release. It comes with 9 months of security updates, critical fixes, and select software updates from Canonical, makers of Ubuntu.

        • Ubuntu 20.10 Released With GNOME 3.38, Active Directory Installer Integration

          Ubuntu 20.10, the “Groovy Gorilla”, is now officially available.

          Ubuntu 20.10 features many improvements like:

          - The GNOME 3.38 desktop is available with a wealth of improvements there including several performance optimizations / fixes handled by Canonical’s desktop team.

          - Continued work on the experimental OpenZFS file-system support that is available as an option when installing Ubuntu.

        • Ubuntu 20.10 (Groovy Gorilla) Is Now Available for Download, This Is What’s New

          Dubbed Groovy Gorilla, Ubuntu 20.10 has been in development for the past six months, continuing the six-month release cycle of Ubuntu. It supersedes the previous release, Ubuntu 20.04 LTS (Focal Fossa), though being a long-term support series many will prefer not to upgrade since they’ll receive free updates for at least 4 and a half more years.

          What’s new in Ubuntu 20.10? Well, being a short-lived release supported for only nine months, Ubuntu 20.10 comes with a handful of new features, including the latest and greatest GNOME 3.38 desktop environment which I previewed last month if you’re curious to see the differences from GNOME 3.36 used in Ubuntu 20.04 LTS.

        • Ubuntu 20.10 Official Flavors Released, Here’s What’s New

          As part of the today’s Ubuntu 20.10 (Groovy Gorilla) release, all the official Ubuntu flavors have been updated and I want you to be the first to read about their new features and improvements. The official flavors released as part of Ubuntu 20.10 (Groovy Gorilla) include Kubuntu 20.10, Xubuntu 20.10, Lubuntu 20.10, Ubuntu Studio 20.10, Ubuntu MATE 20.10, Ubuntu Budgie 20.10, and Ubuntu Kylin 20.10. As expected, they come with all the core features of Ubuntu 20.10, as well as…

          Kubuntu 20.04 LTS ships with the KDE Plasma 5.19.5 desktop environment, KDE Frameworks 5.74 and KDE Applications 20.08 software suites, as well as Qt 5.14.2. Among the included apps, there’s Elisa 20.08.1 as default music player instead of Cantata, LibreOffice 7.0 office suite, Mozilla Firefox 81 web browser, Latte Dock 0.9.10, KDE Connect 20.08.1, Krita 4.3.0, and KDevelop 5.5.2.

        • Ubuntu 20.10 (Groovy Gorilla) released

          The Ubuntu 20.10 release is out.

        • Groovy Gorilla Release Notes

          These release notes for Ubuntu 20.10 (Groovy Gorilla) provide an overview of the release and document the known issues with Ubuntu and its flavours.

        • Ubuntu 20.10 “Groovy Gorilla” Arrives With Linux 5.8, GNOME 3.38, Raspberry Pi 4 Support

          Just two days ago, Ubuntu marked the 16th anniversary of its first ever release, Ubuntu 4.10 “Warty Warthog,” which showed Linux could be a more user friendly operating system.

          Back to now, after the six months of development cycle and the release of the current long-term Ubuntu 20.04 “Focal Fossa,” Canonical has announced a new version called Ubuntu 20.10 “Groovy Gorilla” along with its seven official flavor: Kubuntu, Lubuntu, Ubuntu MATE, Ubuntu Kylin, Xubuntu, Ubuntu Budgie, and Ubuntu Studio.

          Ubuntu 20.10 is a short term or non-LTS release, which means it will be supported for 9 months until July 2021. Though v20.10 does not seem a major release, it does come with a lot of exciting and new features.

        • Ubuntu 20.10 overview | Fast, secure and simple.

          In this video, I am going to show an overview of Ubuntu 20.10 and some of the applications pre-installed.

        • The Ubuntu desktop has a vision problem – Ubuntu 20.10 review

          We’re nearing the end of October already, and this means it’s time for a new release of Ubuntu 20.10, Groovy Gorilla. There are new desktop features, and new plumbing, as always, but I mostly have some thoughts about the Ubuntu desktop in general. Does 20.10 deserve its name?

        • Looking At Six Flavors of Ubuntu 20.10 “Groovy Gorilla”

          In this video, I take a quick look at the recently released (or soon-to-be-released) versions of Ubuntu 20.10 codenamed “Groovy Gorilla.” I will briefly look at the flagship Ubuntu distribution as well as: Kubuntu, Xubuntu, Lubuntu, Ubuntu Budgie and Ubuntu MATE.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Web Browsers

        • Mozilla

          • This Week In Rust: This Week in Rust 361
          • MDN Web Docs: Editorial strategy and community participation – Mozilla Hacks – the Web developer blog

            Our updated editorial strategy has two main parts: the creation of content pillars and an editorial calendar.

            The MDN writers’ team has always been responsible for keeping the MDN web platform reference documentation up-to-date, including key areas such as HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and Web APIs. We are breaking these key areas up into “content pillars”, which we will work on in turn to make sure that the significant new web platform updates are documented each month.

          • L10n Report: October 2020 Edition | Mozilla L10N

            New content and projects What’s new or coming up in Firefox desktop

          • Modern Web Standards Are Leaving Niche Web Browsers Behind – LinuxReviews

            There’s plenty of web browsers to choose from on desktop computers but there’s not much of a choice if you look beneath the surface. There’s a ton of web browsers based on Google’s Chromium code-base, a few mostly iOS and macOS browsers based on Apple’s Webkit engine and then there’s Firefox with it’s own Quantum rendering engine. There also Pale Moon with it’s own Goanna rendering engine. It is increasingly falling behind the bigger browsers and more and more websites are broken in it as web developers deploy web standards other browsers, but not Pale Moon, support.

            [...]

            The developer of the Pale Moon web browser announced that Pale Moon’s source code is being migrated off Microsoft GitHub yesterday. The reason? Moonchild doesn’t like that GitHub is increasingly relying on web standards the Pale Moon web browser doesn’t support.

          • US Department Of Justice Lawsuit Against Google Could Kill Firefox – LinuxReviews

            A US Department of Justice lawsuit against Google on the grounds that they are a “monopolist” could result in the death of the one realistic free software web browser alternative that’s not based on the Google-controlled Chromium code-base and it’s Blink rendering engine. Mozilla will need to find some other partner willing to pay them $400 million a year if they are forced to cancel their sweet “royalty” contract with Google.

      • Programming/Development

        • Python

          • Webinar Recording: “virtualenv – a deep dive” with Bernat Gabor – PyCharm Blog | JetBrains

            PyCharm virtual environments are an important but challenging topic. We recently hosted Bernat Gabor to discuss this, as well as his rewrite of virtualenv, the hugely-popular command-line tool for creating virtual environment. The recording is now available.

            This was a very engaging webinar, with lots of questions, and many thanks to Bernat for taking the time to give thoughtful replies.

          • Python Morsels: The 2 Types of “Change” in Python

            The word “change” is ambiguous in Python: we have two distinct types of “change” in Python.

            We can “change” a variable by changing which object that variable is pointing to. We do that through an assignment statement.

            We can also “change” an actual object through a mutation.

            Let’s take a look at both types of change.

          • Python: Slice Notation on String

            The term slicing in programming usually refers to obtaining a substring, sub-tuple, or sublist from a string, tuple, or list respectively.

            Python offers an array of straightforward ways to slice not only these three but any iterable. An iterable is, as the name suggests, any object that can be iterated over.

            In this article, we’ll go over everything you need to know about Slicing Strings in Python.

          • R vs Python for Data Analysis — An Objective Comparison

            There are dozens articles out there that compare R vs. Python from a subjective, opinion-based perspective. Both Python and R are great options for data analysis, or any work in the data science field.

            But if your goal is to figure out which language is right for you, reading the opinion of someone else may not be helpful. One person’s “easy” is another person’s “hard,” and vice versa.

            In this article, we’re going to do something different. We’ll take an objective look at how both languages handle everyday data science tasks so that you can look at them side-by-side, and see which one looks better for you.

            Keep in mind, you don’t need to actually understand all of this code to make a judgment here! We’ll give you R vs Python code snippets for each task — simply scan through the code and consider which one seems more “readable” to you. Read the explanations, and see if one language holds more appeal than the other.

  • Leftovers

    • Planning for Disaster: A Writing Exercise

      What does it take to survive a crisis? Have you ever written a personal safety plan? Kelly Hayes offers some guidance on building solutions for the situation you’re in.

    • Military Flyovers at NFL Games Are Ridiculous

      There is no broadcast team more pleased with their own stentorian authority than NFL announcers Joe Buck and Troy Aikman. Buck is an American legacy, the son of legendary play by play man Jack Buck. Aikman, the handsome, blond former star quarterback for the Dallas Cowboys, might as well be Captain America’s uncle. These two voices of the heartland were caught on a hot mic speaking the kind of truth that they never would have dared utter on the airwaves.

    • Fraudulent Indigenous Art Is Flooding Museums

      It’s a modest museum on the edge of a modest town. The Lander Pioneer Museum is dimly lit, a nod to its log cabin beginnings, and its mismatched display cases house everything from antique saddles to applesauce mills—artifacts of early settlers in what is now Lander, Wyo. In the main gallery, a placard announces the institution’s major show, “Tribal Warrior Art.” The exhibition, which debuted in fall of 2018, contains about 100 ledger art drawings—narrative illustrations created by Indigenous artists from the Plains on discarded account books, mostly during the late 19th century.

    • Health/Nutrition

      • “Herd Immunity” Was Originally About Vaccination. Now It Is Neoliberal Violence.

        Recent weeks have seen right-wing governments, notably Trump’s administration, embrace the deeply problematic notion of “herd immunity.” These efforts are fortified now by a mysterious “minority report” — purportedly from dissident public health experts — known as The Great Barrington Declaration. Yet the validity of the document is being questioned, as many of the names appearing on it look to be based on jokes. Angela Mitropoulos is a political theorist and academic based in Sydney, Australia, and the author of Pandemonium: Proliferating Borders of Capital and the Pandemic Swerve (2020) and Contract and Contagion (2012). In this interview with cultural theorist Max Haiven (editor of the VAGABONDS book series in which Pandemonium appeared), Mitropoulos discusses the origins and politics of the “herd immunity” argument.

      • McConnell Admits to Sabotaging COVID Relief Talks to Rush Barrett Confirmation

        Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell told his Republican colleagues Tuesday that he has privately been urging the Trump White House not to strike a coronavirus relief deal with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi before the November 3 election, warning that an agreement could interfere with his chamber’s plan to confirm Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court early next week.

      • Veterans Affairs Secretary Headlines GOP Fundraiser as COVID-19 Cases Surge

        Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert Wilkie headlined a fundraiser for the North Carolina Republican Party last week, taking time away from his job leading the government’s second-largest agency at a moment when COVID-19 cases are surging in VA hospitals.

        Though legal, campaigning by cabinet secretaries is a departure from historical norms. Nevertheless, it’s become standard practice in the administration of President Donald Trump. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has hit the campaign trail for Trump, and several other cabinet members recently visited Iowa. Seema Verma, the administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, is also campaigning in North Carolina. Trump himself has routinely blurred politics with official functions, most prominently by hosting the Republican convention on the White House lawn, and he’s brushed off more than a dozen staff violations of the federal Hatch Act, which limits political activity by government employees.

      • World Food Day Drives Home Need for Change in the US

        The pandemic has exposed the fragility of the current industrialized food supply system, which is nested in an unequal, racialized and gendered socio-economic system experiencing the increasing prevalence of unemployment and food insecurity.

      • Global Reproductive Health on the Ballot this November

        If Democrats are elected, we can have a new president and a congress that will fight to repeal the Helms Amendment and safeguard accessible and affordable healthcare everywhere.

      • Illinois Will Start Sharing Data About COVID-19 Outbreaks in Schools

        Eight months into the pandemic and following pleas from educators and parents, Illinois has decided it will publish data on the coronavirus’s spread in schools.

        The decision comes two weeks after a story by ProPublica Illinois and the Chicago Tribune detailed the lack of information available to school officials and parents as they try to decide whether in-person learning is safe. Illinois public health officials told reporters there had been outbreaks in at least 44 school buildings across the state but declined to say where.

      • The EPA Refuses to Reduce Pollutants Linked to Coronavirus Deaths

        In April, as coronavirus cases multiplied across the country, the head of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency rejected scientists’ advice to tighten air pollution standards for particulate matter, or soot.

        In the next few weeks, EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler likely will reaffirm that decision with a final ruling, despite emerging evidence that links particulate pollution to COVID-19 deaths.

      • ‘Prosecute the Sackler Family’: Critics Say DOJ Settlement Not Nearly Enough for Purdue Pharma’s Deadly Role in Opioid Crisis

        “Today’s guilty plea comes too late for the millions of lives that Purdue’s crimes destroyed over the past decade.”

      • Dumb Bastards Are Killing Us
      • Amid Trump’s Politicization of FDA, California Joins New York in Vowing to Independently Review Coronavirus Vaccines

        “Like our approach to Covid-19, when it comes to a vaccine, California will be guided by science.”

      • Russian manufacturer says it refuses to believe news reports that America trashed the ventilators shipped to NYC in April

        The Rostec subsidiary that manufactured the 45 ventilators delivered to New York earlier this year as part of a U.S.-Russian exchange of medical supplies says it doesn’t believe reports in the American news media that the U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency “disposed of” the hardware. “We believe in reason and reject the idea that American officials could do such a thing with valuable equipment so highly in demand around the world during the pandemic,” a spokesperson for the Concern Radio-Electronic Technologies (KRET) told the news agency TASS.

      • A Glimmer of Hope: Mortality Rate Is Improving for Hospitalized COVID Patients

        The drought in New England made this year’s foliage season a foreshortened russet-and-dun affair, and it suits the moment. The hills are painted red in homage to the third surge of COVID-19 that will soon cover every COVID-charting map in a wine-spill of scarlet from sea to sea and border to border. We know this beast by now; that which we are told is coming soon has already arrived in stealth.

      • Trump Denounces Fauci as a “Disaster” Who “Got It Wrong” About COVID-19

        President Donald Trump denounced Dr. Anthony Fauci, the longtime director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, as a “disaster” and possible “idiot” who “got it wrong” about COVID-19 — even though the president recently used Fauci’s words in a recent campaign commercial.

      • Looming Failure of Stimulus Exposes GOP’s Double Standards on the Deficit

        With Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell coming out against a stimulus deal, it looks increasingly unlikely that Congress will pass a COVID stimulus bill before the election. While supposed concerns about a clash between the stimulus and the vote to confirm Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court have thrown a wrench in the timing, the continuation of the months-long Republican resistance in the Senate is supposed to be based on good, old-fashioned fiscal responsibility.

      • The Pandemic Sent Americans’ Health Care Coverage Into Free Fall

        Before the pandemic hit, John made a decent living mowing people’s yards and doing landscaping in Houston. He had a place to live with his 15-year-old son. He even had health insurance that he bought for himself and his son “in case anything happens,” he said.

      • Putin says Russia isn’t planning to introduce a second coronavirus lockdown

        The Russian government isn’t planning to introduce severe restrictions due to the ongoing spread of the coronavirus in the country, said President Vladimir Putin during a meeting with members of the Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs on Wednesday, October 21.

      • Russian health authorities launch inquiry following media reports of COVID-19 patients dying in Rostov-on-Don hospital due to lack of oxygen

        Russia’s federal healthcare watchdog, Roszdravnadzor, is carrying out an inquiry on behalf of the Health Ministry into the cause of death of 13 COVID-19 patients in a hospital in Rostov-on-Don, who, according to media reports, passed away due to a lack of medical oxygen.

      • Oblivion Agenda: Mike Adams’ COVID-19-inspired update to his alien vaccine holocaust conspiracy theory

        I’ve been writing about conspiracy theories over 20 years now. Indeed, my entry into skepticism and science-based medicine came in response to one of the most despicable conspiracy theories in existence, Holocaust denial. At the time, that conspiracy theory seemed on its face ridiculous enough to me, but, as I quickly learned as the 1990s drew to a close, it was held by a disturbing number of people, mostly in the support of admiration of Hitler and even outright fascism. Also, in the course of a few short years, deconstructing Holocaust denial led me to develop many of the skills that enabled me to start tackling alternative medicine and the antivaccine movement. Not long after, I witnessed for my first time the birth of a conspiracy theory, “9/11 Truth,” the conspiracy theory that it wasn’t jetliners that brought down the towers and that the attack was an “inside job,” in response to the World Trade Center attacks on September 11, 2001. This conspiracy theory was soon followed by others, such as the anti-CDC Simpsonwood conspiracy theory first popularized by antivax leader Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. in 2005 and the “CDC whistleblower” antivaccine conspiracy theory in 2014, which later led to Del Bigtree and Andrew Wakefield’s antivaccine propaganda movie disguised as a documentary, VAXXED. As a result of these experiences, I remain a bit of a connoisseur of conspiracy theories, the more ridiculous and outrageous the better, for the simple reason that nearly all science denialism, be it alternative medicine, the antivaccine movement, climate science “skepticism” (i.e., denial), “9/11 Truth,” Holocaust denial, creationism, or others, has at its heart one or more conspiracy theories. Little did I know that, two decades later, knowledge of conspiracy theories, how they originate, and how they spread would be so essential, which leads me to Mike Adams’ “Oblivion Agenda.”

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Pseudo-Open Source

          • 1Password for Linux desktop app now available in beta [Ed: So many puff pieces for proprietary software that is harvesting people's passwords. Are those sites paid to spew out bad recommendations that likely have undisclosed/undocumented back doors?]

            The popular password manager 1Password is now available for Linux users in beta version.

            Pegged for an official release in early 2021, the Linux release for 1Password – which has been used by Windows and Mac users for years – offers a “full-featured desktop app” where users can securely manage and store passwords and other important credentials, such as credit card information.

        • Security

          • U.S. Justice Department charges six Russian military intelligence officers in connection with worldwide cyberattacks

            The United States has accused six officers from the Main Directorate of the General Staff of Russia’s Armed Forces (the GU, formerly known as the Main Intelligence Directorate or GRU) of involvement in a series of large-scale cyberattacks. According to the indictment, these Russian nationals are all officers in Unit 74455, which has been linked repeatedly to hacker attacks in the past, including by Washington. The U.S. Justice Department released the names of the Russian military intelligence officers in question, identifying them as Yuri Andrienko, Sergey Detistov, Pavel Frolov, Anatoly Kovalev, Artem Ochichenko, and Pyotr Paliskin. All six have been charged formally already. The Justice Department noted that one of the accused — Anatoly Kovalev — is also a defendant in the case on Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

          • Making the Grade with Linux and Cybersecurity at the Intelligent Edge

            As intelligent edge deployments accelerate, we have reached a crossroads where many are being forced to choose between the accessibility, ease of use, flexibility, and leading-edge capabilities of open source software and the safety and security of systems in the field. How we proceed has the potential to lead massive transformation in the embedded industry.

            “Using open source early in the proof-of-concept cycle means taking advantage of the rapid pace of open source innovation,” says Matt Jones, Chief Architect at Wind River. “Taking your solution to market comes with additional measures meant to protect your device throughout its lifecycle.”

          • Security updates for Thursday [LWN.net]

            Security updates have been issued by Arch Linux (freetype2), Debian (bluez, firefox-esr, and freetype), Fedora (firefox), openSUSE (chromium), Oracle (kernel), Red Hat (java-11-openjdk), Slackware (kernel), SUSE (freetype2, gnutls, kernel, php7, and tomcat), and Ubuntu (flightgear, italc, libapache2-mod-auth-mellon, libetpan, and php-imagick).

          • Snyk to automatically check Docker Official Images for security problems [Ed: ZDNet pushing FUD vendors again, ones connected to Microsoft]
          • OpenDev’s Gerrit deployment back online after suspected admin account compromise

            OpenDev.org’s Gerrit deployment has been restored after being taken offline following the detection of malicious activity on its repositories.

            The repositories were disabled two hours after project maintainers were alerted to a suspected security breach on Tuesday morning (October 20).
            “We believe an admin account in Gerrit was compromised allowing an attacker to escalate privileges within Gerrit,” said Clark Boylan in a service announcement issued later that day.
            “Around 02:00 UTC October 20 suspicious review activity was noticed, and we were made aware of it shortly afterwards.

            “The involved account was disabled and removed from privileged Gerrit groups. After further investigation we decided that we needed to stop the service, this happened at about 04:00 UTC.”

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • The pylons have ears: Moscow allocates roughly $2 million for a new traffic-monitoring system that will capture the MAC-address from your mobile device

              In its efforts to manage and monitor the flow of human beings through the city, Moscow officials have experimented with mobile apps, QR codes, and telephone hotlines. Many of these systems have confused the elderly, overwhelmed operators, and frustrated virtually everyone. According to a new public contract reported in the Russian news media, the capital now plans to invest in a less intrusive technology that silently tracks traffic flows by logging background connections with random mobile devices. Meduza summarizes a new report by the newspaper Kommersant.

            • Peru’s Third Who Defends Your Data? Report: Stronger Commitments from ISPs, But Imbalances, and Gaps to Bridge.

              Hiperderecho, Peru’s leading digital rights organization, has launched today its third ¿Quién Defiende Tus Datos? (Who Defends you Data)–a report that seeks to hold telecom companies accountable for their users’ privacy. The new Peruvian edition shows improvements compared to 2019’s evaluation.

              Movistar and Claro commit to require a warrant for handing both users’ communications content and metadata to the government. The two companies also earned credit for defending user’s privacy in Congress or for challenging government requests. None scored any star last year in this category. Claro stands out with detailed law enforcement guidelines, including an explanatory chart for the procedures the company adopts before law enforcement requests for communications data. However, Claro should be more specific about the type of communications data covered by the guidelines. All companies have received full stars for their privacy policies, while only three did so in the previous report. Overall, Movistar and Claro are tied in the lead. Entel and Bitel lag, with the former bearing a slight advantage. 

    • Defence/Aggression

    • Transparency/Investigative Reporting

    • Environment

    • Finance

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

    • Free Speech

      • Jeffrey Toobin’s Zoom Dick Incident Is The Perfect Example Of Why We Need Section 230

        I know that it’s 2020 and the normal concepts no longer make any sense, but on Monday of this week, quite a story broke that spread quickly through the media world. CNN and New Yorker famed legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin was apparently suspended from both companies, after it was revealed that he was caught masturbating on a Zoom call with New Yorker colleagues, in which they were playing an election simulation game (that appears to be similar, but not identical to the election simulation game we created — though I swear that ours does not involve any masturbating legal analysts).

      • Content Moderation Case Study: Handling Trolls Invading A Community (1993)

        Summary: Before even the World Wide Web existed, Usenet was a popular gathering place for various niche communities to congregate. In many ways it was similar to what Reddit has become today, except that it was not controlled by any single company. Instead there were a number of newsgroups (like subreddits) and various news servers that could choose to carry whichever news groups they wanted.

      • Russia’s media watchdog says state TV airing leaked photos of historian’s underage foster daughter isn’t a rights violation

        Russia’s media and censorship agency, Roskomnadzor, has determined that the state television channel Rossiya didn’t violate the rights of historian Yuri Dmitriev’s underage foster daughter by airing nude photos of her leaked from a court case file, Karelia’s Children’s Rights Commissioner Gennady Saraev wrote on his page on the social media site Odnoklassniki.

      • Stupid Use Of Profanity Filter Makes A Mess Of Virtual Paleontologist Conference

        We’ve known for some time that the sorts of automated filters that get applied to various internet-y things are flawed in the extreme. But of all the filters that annoy me the most, profanity filters are the worst. And, no, it’s not just because I use curse words like commas. Rather, it’s the combination of just how badly this is used, such as how Google thought for years that “bisexual” was a naughty word, along side how nefarious actors can block all sorts of non-profane language just by calling it profane. Add to all of this that a total lack of nuance for identifying so-called “naughty words” regularly causes perfectly non-profane content to be blocked or censored and this all begins to look like an exercise worth giving up.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • Labor, Land, and Legacy: What New Might We Grow in the Shell of the Old?

        Jersey City, N.J.—Our diasporic family lives between three places, at least figuratively: the United States, Ecuador, and Egypt. Ecuador was hit hardest by the pandemic in regions where migrants had returned home from Spain, bringing the virus with them. Images of dead bodies deserted in the streets of Guayaquil made my mom’s anxiety about Covid-19 soar. For weeks, my parents would not even walk Pechochito, their feisty Pomeranian, around the block. And so, I did what any loving (and newly unemployed) first-generation daughter would do: I took care of their grocery shopping, and their business; I became an interim landlord.

      • A Dilemma of Intimacy

        When I shaved my head in anticipation of chemotherapy, two things happened. First, just like that, I stopped looking like a woman. Second, I turned into a monk. My husband, peering in the mirror, said, “Hey, you look like a cute monk!” I am pretty sure the “cute” part came out of love, but the “monk” part, echoing my thoughts, struck me as a notable coincidence. In the spirit of camaraderie, he, too, shaved his head. But he did not look less male, nor did he look like a monk. Being tall and white, he looked… well, military. So there we were: the monk and the soldier.

      • ‘Exciting and Historical Moment’: Their Rights Restored, 67,000+ Former Felons Set to Vote in Florida Amid Record Early Turnout

        “There are thousands upon thousands of energized and inspired returning citizens throughout the state that will not be denied, that will be a voice, and will have an impact in determining who wins Florida.”

      • Using DOJ ‘to Crush a Victim,’ Barr Claims Trump Cannot Be Sued for Denying E. Jean Carroll’s Rape Accusation

        “There is not a single person in the United States—not the president and not anyone else—whose job description includes slandering women they sexually assaulted,” Carroll’s lawyers said. 

      • Report Details How Trump Downplays, Ignores Grave Human Rights Violations Around the World

        One expert accused the administration of “using all the tools at its disposal to undermine our asylum system.”

      • Best Wishes
      • DEA’s “Project Safeguard” Latest Salvo in Failed US War on Drugs

        “It is astonishing that in the midst of a pandemic and calls for police reform, the DEA is using the same old heavy-handed tactics to address a public health issue.”

      • Overdoses Are Skyrocketing During COVID-19. The DEA Is Making It Worse.

        Drug overdose deaths have seen an alarming spike as the COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted treatment and aggravated the underlying causes of drug misuse, according to multiple data sources. Meanwhile, millions of people in the United States continue to face significant barriers to evidence-based addiction treatment as law enforcement restricts the supply of pharmaceutical opioids, forcing pain patients and drug users toward dangerous substitutes such as heroin and fentanyl that fuel high rates of fatal overdoses.

      • Confirmation Hearings Exposed Barrett as a Hardcore Rightwing Activist

        Her goal on the court will be to drive America back to the days before the New Deal and the civil rights movement.

      • We Can’t See Young Progressive Voters as a Monolith

        These dispatches are published as part of StudentNation’s “Vision 2020: Election Stories From the Next Generation,” reports from young journalists that center the concerns of diverse young voters. In this project, working with Dr. Sherri Williams, we recruited young journalists from different backgrounds to develop story ideas and reporting about their peers’ concerns ahead of the most important election of our lives. This is the final installment of the series.

      • Pope Francis Signals ‘Historic’ Shift for Catholic Church, Publicly Supporting Civil Unions for Same-Sex Couples

        The pope won praise for “pushing the Church into the 21st Century.”

      • Russian Cabinet rejects bill outlining changes to the Family Code impacting children’s and transgender rights

        Russia’s Government Commission on Legislative Activities has rejected conservative Senator Elena Mizulina’s draft law “aimed at strengthening the institution of the family.” The commission believes that the changes outlined in the bill would tip the balance “towards the rights of parents” at the expense of children’s rights. A draft of the cabinet’s decision was obtained by TASS on Tuesday, October 20.

      • Women’s Rights, No Strings Attached
      • Aaron Sorkin Sanitizes the Chicago 7

        I confess that I was disheartened when I first heard that Aaron Sorkin, best known as the creator of the TV show The West Wing, was writing and directing a film about the trial of the Chicago Seven. Although much celebrated not just for The West Wing but for his scripts for films like A Few Good Men (1992) and The Social Network (2010), Sorkin struck me as having the exact wrong sensibility for telling the story of radicals fighting the legal system. Spanning the years 1969 and 1970, the Chicago Seven trial involved the federal government trying to convict seven anti-war radicals (Abbie Hoffman, Jerry Rubin, David Dellinger, Tom Hayden, Rennie Davis, John Froines, and Lee Weiner) along with Black Panther leader Bobby Seale (whose case was eventually treated separately). All stood accused of fomenting riots during the 1968 Democratic convention. The trial was extremely controversial and polarizing, with many shocking moments, most notoriously when Judge Julius Hoffman ordered Seale shackled and gagged after the defendant repeatedly tried to represent himself in court.

      • EFF to Supreme Court: American Companies Complicit in Human Rights Abuses Abroad Should Be Held Accountable

        For years EFF has been calling for U.S. companies that act as “repressions little helpers” to be held accountable, and now we’re telling the U.S. Supreme Court. Despite all the ways that technology has been used as a force for good–connecting people around the world, giving voice to the less powerful, and facilitating knowledge sharing—technology has also been used as a force multiplier for repression and human rights violations, a dark side that cannot be denied.Today EFF filed a brief urging the Supreme Court to preserve one of the few tools of legal accountability that exist for companies that intentionally aid and abet foreign repression, the Alien Tort Statute (ATS). We told the court about what we and others have been seeing over the past decade or so: surveillance, communications, and database systems, just to name a few, have been used by foreign governments—with the full knowledge of and assistance by the U.S. companies selling those technologies—to spy on and track down activists, journalists, and religious minorities who have been imprisoned, tortured, and even killed.Specifically, we asked the Supreme Court today to rule that U.S. corporations can be sued by foreigners under the ATS and taken to court for aiding and abetting gross human rights abuses. The court is reviewing an ATS lawsuit brought by former child slaves from Côte d’Ivoire who claim two American companies, Nestle and Cargill, aided in abuse they suffered by providing financial support to cocoa farms they were forced to work at. The ATS allows noncitizens to bring a civil claim in U.S. federal court against a defendant that violated human rights laws. The companies are asking the court to rule that companies cannot be held accountable under the law, and that only individuals can.We were joined in the brief by the leading organizations tracking the sale of surveillance technology:  Access Now, Article 19, Privacy International, Center for Long-Term Cybersecurity, and Ronald Deibert, director of Citizen Lab at University of Toronto. We told the court that the Nestle case does not just concern chocolate and children. The outcome will have profound implications for millions of Internet users and other citizens of countries around the world. Why? Because providing sophisticated surveillance and censorship products and services to foreign governments is big business for some American tech companies. The fact that their products are clearly being used for tools of oppression seems not to matter. Here are a few examples we cite in our brief:Cisco custom-built the so-called “Great Firewall” in China, also known as the “Golden Shield, which enables the government to conduct Internet surveillance and censorship against its citizens. Company documents have revealed that, as part of its marketing pitch to China, Cisco built a specific “Falun Gong module” into the Golden Shield that helped Chinese authorities efficiently identify and locate member of the Falun Gong religious minority, who were then apprehended and subjected to torture, forced conversion, and other human rights abuses. Falun Gong practitioners sued Cisco under the ATS in a case currently pending in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. EFF has filed briefs siding with the plaintiffs throughout the case.Ning Xinhua, a pro-democracy activist from China, just last month sued the successor companies, founder, and former CEO of Yahoo! Under the ATS for sharing his private emails with the Chinese government, which led to his arrest, imprisonment, and torture.Recently, the government of Belarus used technology from Sandvine, a U.S. network equipment company, to block much of the Internet during the disputed presidential election in August (the company canceled its contract with Belarus because of the censorship). The company’s technology is also used by Turkey, Syria, and Egypt against Internet users to redirect them to websites that contain spyware or block their access to political, human rights, and news contentWe also cited a case against IBM where we filed a brief in support of the plaintiffs, victims of apartheid, who sued under the ATS on claims that the tech giant aided and abetted the human rights abuses they suffered at the hands of the South African government. IBM created a customized computer-based national identification system that facilitated the “denationalization” of country’s Black population. Its customized technology enabled efficient identification, racial categorization, and forced segregation, furthering the systemic oppression of South Africa’s native population. Unfortunately the case was dismissed by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.  The Supreme Court has severely limited the scope of ATS in several rulings over the years. The court is now being asked to essentially grant immunity from the ATS to U.S. corporations. That would be a huge mistake. Companies that provide products and services to customers that clearly intend to, and do, use them to commit gross human rights abuses must be held accountable for their actions. We don’t think companies should be held liable just because their technologies ended up in the hands of governments that use them to hurt people. But when technology corporations custom-make products for governments that are plainly using them to commit human rights abuses, they cross a moral, ethical, and legal line.We urge the Supreme Court to hold that U.S. courts are open when a U.S. tech company decides to put profits over basic human rights, and people in foreign countries are seriously harmed or killed by those choices.

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

      • Our Latest Techdirt Greenhouse Panel: Broadband In The Age Of Covid

        Let’s be clear: despite ample rhetoric to the contrary, U.S. broadband has always been a mediocre mess. Despite decades of incalculable industry handouts and political lip service, 42 million Americans (double official FCC estimates) still lack access to any broadband whatsoever. 83 million Americans are trapped under a broadband monopoly. Tens of millions more Americans are stuck with a duopoly, usually a combination of a cable giant and a phone company unwilling to upgrade or even repair aging DSL lines because it’s not profitable, quickly enough, for Wall Street’s liking.

      • FCC Too Afraid To Go On Record To Truly Support Trump’s Dumb Attack On Social Media

        We’ve already discussed at length how the FCC’s support of Trump’s dumb attack on social media and Section 230 is some of the most blistering hypocrisy we’ve ever seen (and we’ve seen a lot). This was, you’ll recall, an agency that whined like a toddler for five straight years about how some fairly modest rules holding telecom monopolies accountable was somehow “government run amok,” yet has now pivoted gracelessly into supporting Trump’s dumb, likely unconstitutional effort to have the FCC police social media — despite having little to no authority to actually do so.

    • Monopolies

      • ‘Long Overdue’: Justice Department Sues Google in Antitrust Case

        The filing, announced Tuesday morning, accuses the tech giant of violating law to stifle competition.

      • Supporters Of Using Antitrust Against Big Tech Should Be Very Disappointed In How Weak The DOJ’s Case Is

        As you’ve already heard, the DOJ filed the long-expected antitrust case against Google earlier this week. Karl has already discussed how it appears to be a politicized weapon wielded by Attorney General Bill Barr to create a bogus culture war around how Trump is “taking on” big tech. Cathy has looked at one weird aspect of the case — how its own argument regarding trademark genericide actually cuts against the idea that Google is a monopoly.

      • Hague District Court grants cross-border preliminary injunction against Mylan in Novartis SPC battle

        Conventional wisdom says that the Dutch courts favour a pragmatic and commercial approach to patent litigation, allowing, where they can, patentees to effectively obtain cross-border injunctions against multiple defendants. In a recent decision dated 29 September 2020, the Hague District Court once again proved this conventional wisdom to be true.

        The Court’s decision imposes a pan-European preliminary injunction on three different Mylan entities for the infringement or facilitation of infringement of a Supplementary Protection Certificate (SPC) held by Novartis. There decision can be found here [in Dutch].

        The decision is interesting because of (1) the Court’s analysis of the interface between paediatric extensions, orphan drugs and SPC’s; (2) the Court’s finding that the holder of a market authorization (MA) and a parent company can be liable for tortious interference of patent infringement; and (3) the Court’s assumption of jurisdiction to impose cross-border relief against a foreign MA holder.

      • Trademarks

For Better ‘Tech Rights’ in the United States (and the World at Large) the ‘Orange Man’ Needs to Go

Posted in America at 9:32 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Not that Mr. Biden is good, but he’s clearly the “lesser evil” when it comes to “tech policy”

SF City Hall at night on Election Day 2018
SF City Hall at night on Election Day 2018, CC BY-SA 4.0 by Mrbeastmodeallday

Summary: With less than a fortnight before election day we explain our stance from a purely tech-related rationale

THE election day in the United States (US) is fast approaching. We never endorse politicians in any country. Most politicians are professional liars and in the US they notoriously run for their “campaign contributors”, who clearly look for something in return. This form of ‘legalised’ bribery isn’t unique to the US, but maybe it is most grotesque there (relative to other Western countries).

I am the MafiaVoting is an opportunity for the public to have a say about how this public is being governed. In a two-party system, where both parties are funded by overlapping interests that favour war/imperialism and ignore the destruction of this planet (the only planet we have and will ever deem inhabitable for human life), the public is limited to “saying” little of significance.

This election cycle is a bit different however. As far as Techrights is concerned, we’ve seen major regressions in the way patent reform was handled and even thwarted.

I work for MAFIAAHours ago we learned that Mr. Iancu, the mole (a Donald Trump associate) at the USPTO, is looking to crush patent quality by looking for more excuses to weaken Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) inter partes reviews (IPRs), in defiance of what high courts (Federal Circuit and SCOTUS) have repeatedly ruled. This isn’t the exception from this regime. It’s just more of the same. The past 4 years have been a rollercoaster of crimes, corruption, nepotism, and cover-up. Those who choose to vote for the “lesser evil” next month are basically giving a big middle finger (and a loud “FUCK YOU!”) to all that.

We’re not telling people how to vote. But we merely convey the simple fact that this regime — as far as technology and patents go — is on our very opposite side. US citizens cannot end plutocracy, but if once in 4 years they can make a little difference, then why the heck not?

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