Links 25/1/2021: Huawei on GNU/Linux, NuTyX 20.12.1, Whisker Menu 2.5.3, Lutris, Linux 5.11 RC5

Posted in News Roundup at 12:15 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • 9to5Linux Weekly Roundup: January 24th, 2021 (1st Anniversary)

      Believe it or not, today is 9to5Linux’s first anniversary! It is on this day (January 24th) that I’ve launched 9to5Linux.com a year ago and it wouldn’t be possible without your support, so THANK YOU for all your feedback and donations (they were put to good use) so far. Here’s to us and to many more happy years together!

      This has been another amazing week of Linux news and releases as TUXEDO Computers and System76 announced new Linux laptops, Oracle announced Linux 5.10 LTS support for VirtualBox, Raspberry Pi Foundation announced their own silicon, and the KDE Plasma 5.21 desktop environment entered public beta testing. Check them all out in the weekly roundup below, along with all the latest Linux distro and app releases!

    • Linux Weekly Roundup #114

      Hello and welcome to this week’s Linux weekly roundup!

      We had another peaceful week in the world of Linux releases namely, NuTyX 20.12.1, Qubes OS • 4.0.4-rc2, Bluestar Linux 5.10.9, and Redcore 2101-beta.

      The main release of this week is KDE Plasma 5.21 Beta, packed with new features.

      May you have a wonderful week and see you next week!

    • Linux Release Roundup #21.04: Krita 4.4.2, KDE Plasma 5.21, qBittorrent 4.3.3, And More New Releases

      In the Linux Release Roundup series, we summarize the new application and distribution versions release in the last few days. This keeps you informed with the latest developments in the Linux world.

    • Linux Weekly Roundup: Kernel 5.10.10, Plasma 5.21 Beta and More

      Here’s this week’s (ending Jan 24, 2021) roundup series, curated for you from the Linux and the open-source world on application updates, new releases, distribution updates, major news, and upcoming highlights. Have a look.

    • Out of Loss and Disappointment

      I know, many of you are very disappointed with what happened in recent events. I understand the feeling. However, that isn’t what this post is about. My reason for this post is about something good.

      Recently, much evil has been exposed, and that’s a good thing. We now know the real truth about Amazon, Facebook, Twitter, and so forth. We now know not to use services provided by these companies. Will I still by somethings from Amazon or Whole Foods? Yes, But not as my first choice. Also, I will not be using any of Amazon’s technology such as AWS.


      My laptop runs on GNU/Linux. There is more to come. This is a start of something new. The future awaits us all. Let’s make it better!

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • Fearful Huawei finds comfort in Deepin Linux on laptops

        Whenever people discuss the problems Huawei is facing due to the so-called Trump ban the conversation rarely strays from the smartphone discussion and yet Huawei is more than just a smartphone company. Their product line is every bit as extensive as Samsung’s. They don’t just make expensive phones like the P40 Pro, they also make Televisions and even dabble in the laptop game as well. In fact, the stats show that they actually have a very viable laptop business. Have you ever seen a Huawei laptop in real life? Me neither, I just ogle at them on YouTube.The company started marketing their MateBook series back in 2016 when they gained a meagre 2% market share. In 2020 that number has grown to about 17% of the Chinese market and the company is expected to ship about 6 million units of its popular MateBook series in 2020. The company has also said that they have seen a growth of about 250% compared to 2018. Not a bad side business if you ask me.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • TWIL 135: Red Hat’s No-Cost RHEL, Linux on Apple M1 Mac, Google’s Chromium Fiasco | This Week in Linux – TuxDigital

        On this episode of This Week in Linux, Red Hat Announces new updates for the CentOS situation in that you can now get RHEL at No-Cost. We’re also going to be talking about a new piece of hardware from the Raspberry Pi Foundation called the Pico. Then we will check out some more Enterprise-y goodness from SUSE. Plus we’ve got some updates related to running Linux on Apple M1 Mac. We’ve also got some app news related to graphics tools Inkscape & Krita plus a not so ideal update from Google for Chromium. Later in the show we will discuss some distro news including Linux Mint having a big screensaver bug & Ubuntu announced their plans for Ubuntu 21.04 in regards to GNOME 40. All that and much more on Your Weekly Source for Linux GNews!

      • KDE Plasma 5.21 Beta Run Through

        In this video, we are looking at KDE Plasma 5.21 Beta

      • KDE Plasma 5.21 Beta

        Today we are looking at KDE Plasma 5.21 Beta. As usual, we just do a run-through of the Beta release of the new KDE Plasma desktop environment and when the stable release is out we look at some of the new features that stand out for us, so keep your eyes out for it! However, in this run through you can have a look at some of the new features added and check out the release notes, link below for more info about the changes, and more!

      • Ucollage: Ueberzug Terminal Image Viewer

        Ueberzug is a such a cool program and thanks to it you can make a real image viewer that works inside of your terminal, no need to use ascii, or unicode blocks here we get real image rendering in a terminal.

      • 6 Tips to Start Your Tech Career in 2021
      • Linux Action News 173

        Why we don’t think Red Hat’s expanded developer program is enough, our reaction to Ubuntu sticking with an older Gnome release, and a tiny delightful surprise.

      • GNU World Order 390

        **vbetool** , **Vim** , plus **vorbis-tools** , including **ogg123** , **oggdec** and **oggenc** , **ogginfo** , **vcut** , and **vorbiscomment**.

      • Episode 255 – What if security wasn’t joyless? – Open Source Security

        Josh and Kurt talk about what we can stop doing. We take a position of asking “does it spark joy” for tools and infrastructure. Everyone is doing something they should stop.

      • Attention Arch Users! Replace ‘Yay’ With ‘Paru’. – YouTube

        Are you an Arch Linux user? Do you install packages from the AUR? Do you use the Yay AUR helper? If so, know this–yay isn’t really maintained anymore. Instead, it is recommended that you install paru as a replacement for yay.

      • LHS Episode #389: Jailbird Jamboree

        Welcome to Episode 389 of Linux in the Ham Shack. In this episode, the hosts discuss illegal activity on the air, the purpose of amateur radio, a remote head unit for the Icom IC-7100, Linux on the Apple M1 chip, a new frontier for Red Hat Enterprise Linux, ethical open-source licenses and much more. Thank you for tuning in and have a great week!

      • Full Circle Magazine: Full Circle Weekly News #197

        Ubuntu Making Home Folders Private in 21.04


        Ubuntu 21.04 Makes Phased Updates a Reality


        Tails Has a Focus in 2021


        Project Lenix from CloudLinux Gets a Name


        Valve Will Continue Their Linux Investment


        Fedora Kinoite, a New Immutable OS


        Microsoft Defender for Linux Servers Now Generally Available


        Alpine Linux 3.13.0 Out


        KaOS 2021.01 Out


        Raspberry Pi OS 2011-01-11 Out


        Flatpak 1.10.0 Out


        Wine 6.0 Out



        Proton 5.13-5 Out


        Mobian Community Edition PinePhone Out


      • The MUDDY ethics of Free Software
    • Kernel Space

      • Intel Has A New Driver For Linux 5.12: Reporting Your Laptop’s Hinge/Keyboard Angle – Phoronix

        Intel’s latest open-source Linux driver contribution is a hinge driver that is set to debut with Linux 5.12.

        The “hid-sensor-custom-intel-hinge” driver is for supporting a hinge sensor found in many modern Intel laptops. This sensor is able to calculate the angle of the laptop’s hinge, the screen angle, and the keyboard angle relative to the horizon/ground. I hadn’t realized this sensor was all that common these days but apparently so and enough interest to Intel that they have now provided a Linux driver for exposing this hinge / keyboard / screen angle data.

      • Learn To Get Involved In Linux Kernel Development This Spring

        The Linux kernel mentor program for the spring 2021 period is now accepting applications.

        The Linux Foundation’s mentorship program for getting new developers involved in kernel developer are now accepting applications for their spring initiative. This program is primarily focused on fixing easy-to-address bugs that have turned up via automated testing / tools analyzing the code but not yet addressed upstream.

      • Linux 5.11-rc5
        So this rc looked fairly calm and small, all the way up until today.
        In fact, over 40% of the non-merge commits came in today, as people
        unloaded their work for the week on me. The end result is a slightly
        larger than usual rc5 (but both 5.10 and 5.8 were bigger, so not some
        kind of odd outlier).
        Nothing particularly stands out. We had a couple of splice()
        regressions that came in during the previous release as part of the
        "get rid of set_fs()" development, but they were for odd cases that
        most people would never notice. I think it's just that 5.10 is now
        getting more widely deployed so people see the fallout from that
        rather fundamental change in the last release.  And the only reason I
        even reacted to those is just because I ended up being involved with
        some of the tty patches during the early calm period of the past week.
        There's a few more still pending.
        But the bulk of it all is all the usual miscellaneous fixes all over
        the place, and a lot of it is truly trivial one- or few-liners. Just
        under half the patch is for drivers, with the rest being the usual mix
        of tooling, arch updates, filesystem and core (mm, scheduling,
        Nothing here makes me go "Uhhuh" in other words.
      • Linux 5.11-rc5 Kernel Released Following A Busy Sunday – Phoronix

        The fifth weekly release candidate of Linux 5.11 is now available for testing.

        Last week Linux 5.11-rc4 was released and Linus Torvalds characterized it as shaping into a fairly normal release cycle. Linux 5.11-rc5 was quiet too, up until today when there was a rush of last minute pull requests.

    • Applications

      • TV-Lite – GTK 3 IPTV, Sopcast, Acestream Player for Linux

        TV-Lite is a free open-source IPTV player with Sopcast and Acestream handling capabilities, which runs in Linux and Windows.

        TV-Lite aims to be a replacement for the older TV-Maxe. It so far uses VLC for media playback, and need Acestream and / or Sopcast for this program to be able to handle the respective stream types.


        Once installed, open the player from system app menu and you can add following line into Menu -> “Manage subscriptions” for free TVs.

      • Explore binaries using this full-featured Linux tool

        In 10 ways to analyze binary files on Linux, I explained how to use Linux’s rich set of native tools to analyze binaries. But if you want to explore your binary further, you need a tool that is custom-made for binary analysis. If you are new to binary analysis and have mostly worked with scripting languages, 9 essential GNU binutils tools will help you get started learning the compilation process and what constitutes a binary.

        It’s natural to ask why you need yet another tool if existing Linux-native tools do similar things. Well, it’s for the same reasons you use your cellphone as your alarm clock, to take notes, as a camera, to listen to music, to surf the internet, and occasionally to make and receive calls. Previously, separate devices and tools handled these functions — like a physical camera for taking pictures, a small notepad for taking notes, a bedside alarm clock to wake up, and so on. Having one device to do multiple (but related) things is convenient for the user. Also, the killer feature is interoperability between the separate functions.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • How to Install Xrdp on Ubuntu 20.04

        Xrdp is an open-source equivalent of Microsoft’s Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP). With xrdp installed on a Linux system, users can remotely access the Linux desktop using an RDP client as we shall demonstrate later in this article. It’s completely free to download and use.

        Without much further ado, let’s see how you can install Xrdp on Ubuntu Desktop 20.04 and 18.04.

      • How to Symlink a File in Linux

        A symbolic link, also known as ‘Symlink‘ is a special type of file in Linux, which is used for the purpose of pointing to another file. The symlink does not contain any other data apart from the disk address of the file to which the symlink is pointing to.

        Symlinks are particularly useful as shortcut files; where you can have the symlink of a program/application on your desktop/home folder, instead of the program file and its dependencies.

      • How to Install Wine 5.0 on Debian, Ubuntu and Linux Mint

        Wine is an open-source, free and easy-to-use program that enables Linux users to run Windows-based applications on Unix-like operating systems. Wine is a compatibility layer for installing almost all versions of Windows programs.

        Wine 6.0 is finally released and it comes with an array of numerous enhancements and a total of 40 bug fixes. You can find out all the new features and changelog of this new release on the Wine announcement project page.

      • How to Install Wine 6.0 in Ubuntu

        Wine is a nifty utility that allows users to run Windows applications inside a Linux environment. Wine 6.0 is finally out, and it ships with an array of numerous improvements and a total of 40 bug fixes.

      • How to Change Open File Limit in Linux

        In Linux, there are limits defined by the system for anything that consumes resources. For example, there are limits on how many arguments can be passed to a certain command, how many threads can run at the same time, etc.

        Similarly, there is a limit on the number of open files. As you might know, an open file is actively being used in some of the other programs and hence consumes memory.
        You can view and modify the open file limit with the command ‘ulimit‘.

      • How to Install GVM Vulnerability Scanner on Ubuntu 20.04

        GVM (Greenbone Vulnerability Management) is an open-source solution for vulnerability scanning and vulnerability management. GVM was previously known as OpenVAS.

        Greenbone Vulnerability Manager and OpenVAS are widely used by a number of people in the World including security experts and common users alike who used this all in one suite of tools that works together to run the tests against client computers using its own database of known weaknesses and exploits.

        In this article, we will show How to install and setup GVM on Ubuntu 20.04 to make sure that your servers are protected against attacks.

      • How To Install Wine on Debian 10 – idroot

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Wine on Debian 10. For those of you who didn’t know, Wine is a free and open-source use that allows users to run Microsoft Windows applications in a Linux environment. In the present day, Wine is a must-have tool to get Linux users who don’t want to be able to let go of Windows native software especially gamers.

        This article assumes you have at least basic knowledge of Linux, know how to use the shell, and most importantly, you host your site on your own VPS. The installation is quite simple and assumes you are running in the root account, if not you may need to add ‘sudo‘ to the commands to get root privileges. I will show you through the step by step installation of Wine on a Debian 10 (Buster).

      • How to boot multiple ISO images from one USB drive on Linux

        A bootable USB drive allows you to instantly run a full-fledged OS from the file system on the USB drive, rather than from the host computer’s hard drive. Such capability is quite useful in various scenarios, for example, when you need to diagnose and repair a corrupted file system of a host computer, or when you want to test drive an alternative OS or the latest release of your favorite Linux distro before installing it. You can easily create a bootable USB by burning an ISO image on a USB drive with tools like Gparted or UNetbootin. There is nothing fancy.

        However, for people like me who would like to try out all sorts of Linux distros and different releases of each distro for testing purposes, as part of writing tutorials, what would be nice is the ability to boot multiple ISO images from a single USB drive. However, a typical bootable USB drive or memory stick can only boot from a single ISO file stored on the drive. It is not only inconvenient as I need to re-format the USB drive with a new ISO file every time I need to boot from a different ISO file, but also quite wasteful as a typical USB drive has much bigger space than a single ISO image. Although it’s possible to boot ISO files using GRUB, it’s rather cumbersome to modify GRUB configuration each time you want to add a new ISO file to try. Also, the GRUB-based approache does not provide the portability of a USB drive.

      • How to compress PDF files on Linux | FOSS Linux

        PDFs offer us one of the most convenient ways of sharing images. However, by stuffing tons of data such as images and graphics, the PDF file size can get too big to share via emails. If you are also suffering from this issue, you have come to the right place. Here, we will show you how to compress a PDF file in Linux to reduce its size drastically. And don’t worry, we have included both GUI and Terminal methods in this tutorial.

      • How to fix error : Conda command not found

        If you have already installed Miniconda and cannot run the commands in the terminal while using zsh, you may find the following helpful.

        In case you have already added the appropriate path environment variable to bashrc and bash_profile files, you would need to add the Miniconda folder directory to the PATH environment variable of zsh shell.

      • How to set up SSH dynamic port forwarding on Linux | Enable Sysadmin

        Dynamic port forwarding allows for a great deal of flexibility and secure remote connections. See how to configure and use this SSH feature.

      • Introduction to ContainerJFR: JDK Flight Recorder for containers

        OpenJDK has long been a top pick for real-world applications and workloads, chosen for its blend of performance, compatibility, reliability, and observability. For many years, JDK Flight Recorder (JFR) and JDK Mission Control (JMC) have contributed to OpenJDK’s success. Until recently, both were commercial features, however, available only for certain users and workloads.

        In 2018, JDK Mission Control and JDK Flight Recorder were open-sourced. JDK Flight Recorder is now built into the Java Virtual Machine (JVM) for later releases of OpenJDK 8 and all versions from OpenJDK 11 onward. Open-sourcing these tools brings their power—always-on, near-zero overhead production profiling and monitoring, application-specific custom events, and unified-core JDK analytical tooling—to all JDK users. On the downside, JDK Mission Control and JDK Flight Recorder have emerged into a world rapidly moving toward containerization, which is not the paradigm that they were designed for.

        The desktop-only JDK Mission Control application requires developers and administrators to access flight recordings on the local disk. Otherwise, one resorts to a complex and potentially insecure setup to connect directly to applications over Java Management Extensions (JMX) in the cloud. Similarly, the bare-metal-focused JDK Flight Recorder allows JVMs to dump recordings into the local filesystem, but not when the application runs inside a container. In that case, the filesystem is not easily accessible from the outside world, and it isn’t possible to retrieve and analyze recordings.

      • Install and Configure Grafana on Kubernetes

        We are going to deploy Grafana to visualise Prometheus monitoring data.

      • How to Install and Use Docker on Ubuntu 20.04 | 18.04

        Docker is a free, open-source and cross-platform containerization tool that helps you to deploy and run the application in an isolated environment. Docker has become one of the most important parts of modern software development and DevOps pipelines.

      • How to Find Cheap Linux VPS? [Ed: Potentially a bit spammy (the links in there)]

        VPS stands for a Virtual Private Server. This is a virtual machine that is commonly used for hosting a web site. You can buy a VPS from a hosting provider companies such as Routerhosting, and based on your requirements. Each VPS provides you a private resource on a server to host your website. Likewise, you can use a shared VPS that is more affordable but in low security. Another noticeable factor for selecting a perfect VPS is operating system. The operating system that you select for VPS will have a strong impact on your business or the field of your action. There are two options available including Windows VPS and Linux VPS. Although there are many basic functions that are common between them, but selecting the OS completely depends on users and their preferences. As you know Linux VPS is more popular than Windows. You can easily find a cheap Linux VPS with great speed, function, and security.

      • 4 ways to identify your current shell (if it’s bash)

        Knowing which run you are using on your system is an important piece of information. Your shell determines your login environment to a large extent as it controls which environment variables get exported, your shell prompt etc. On a Linux system it’s almost certain that you will using the bash shell unless the system administrator has deliberately changed it to something else. In this quick article we will demonstrate four ways you can determines if you are running the bash shell or not.

      • Alan Pope: The Black Oblong of Monospace Mystery

        I originally titled this post “Don’t be afraid of the command line”, but decided “Black Oblong of Monospace Mystery” was more fun. Is the command line really scary? It doesn’t feel like that to me, but I grew up with an interface which looks like this on first boot.

      • What Is DNS Server?

        What is DNS Server? DNS stands for Domain Name System. This is actually a service that runs on all of our computers but majorly it runs the entire internet. We type a website in the browser and with the bling of our eyes the website is open. Have you ever wondered how does that happen? In today’s article, we will learn the process of how the website opens so fast and how DNS plays an important role in this process.

        We already know that every website is saved in a server that is located somewhere in the world. We need to reach this server and ask for the website homepage. In order to reach this Server, we need the address. When we want to visit a person in real life, we need his home address but in the world of the internet, we need the logical address. Internet Protocol, also known as IP Address is the logical addressing system.

        In order to reach a website we need to enter its server IP in the browser and the server will reply with the homepage. Initially, when the internet was in its infancy, people kept the record of IP addresses. Gradually, the internet because huge, and keeping the record of IP addresses was a challenge. The markers of the Internet knew that humans are very good at remembering names than numbers. They came up with the idea of a DNS Server.

      • How to install Proton VPN on a Chromebook

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

      • How to Install AppImage in Linux

        AppImage is format for packaging applications which is self-contained. It is the universal software package format compatible with various Linux distribution. In the traditional system of installing software packages, you need to download, extract and install on various directories of the system. But with the AppImage there is no extraction, no installation, no root permission, you just download the single package, make it executable and run it with a single click. It includes all the compressed image, dependencies, and libraries needed to run the software. Even to uninstall the application, you will just remove the AppImage file.

      • Install Oracle Virtualbox 6.1.18 in Ubuntu 20.04 / CentOS 8 & Fedora

        Virtualbox an open-source application for running operating systems virtually in our base system and this application available for multiple operating systems (ie) Windows, Linux, and macOS.

        It has a large number of features, high performing software used in enterprise-level and licensed under General Public License (GPL). It is developed by a community based on a dedicated company.

        This tutorial will be helpful for beginners to install Oracle VirtualBox 6.1.18 in Ubuntu 20.04, Ubuntu 19.10, CentOS 8 / Redhat 8, and Fedora.

      • How To Install Docker on Linux Mint 20

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Docker on Linux Mint 20. For those of you who didn’t know, Docker is an open-source project that automates the deployment of the application inside the software container. The container allows the developer to package up all project resources such as libraries, dependencies, assets, etc. Docker is written in a Go Programming language and is developed by Dot cloud. It is basically a container engine that uses the Linux Kernel features like namespaces and control groups to create containers on top of an operating system and automates the application deployment on the container.

        This article assumes you have at least basic knowledge of Linux, know how to use the shell, and most importantly, you host your site on your own VPS. The installation is quite simple and assumes you are running in the root account, if not you may need to add ‘sudo‘ to the commands to get root privileges. I will show you through the step by step installation of Docker on a Linux Mint 20 (Ulyana).

      • How to Secure Email Server Against Hacking with VPN (CentOS/RHEL)

        In this tutorial, I’m going to share with you my tips and tricks to secure CentOS/RHEL email servers against hacking with a self-hosted VPN server. Many spammers are trying to hack into other people’s email servers. If successful, they would use the hacked email server to send large volumes of spam or steal valuable data. Why do we use a self-hosted VPN server? Because it allows you to enable whitelisting, so only trusted users connected to the VPN server can access your mail server.

      • Fixed compile of libvdpau-va-gl in OE

        I posted yesterday about the problem in OpenEmbedded when the compile of a package requires execution of a binary:


        This problem does not occur if the build-architecture and target-architectures are the same. The problem occurs with a cross-compile.
        Today I had the same problem, with package ‘libvdpau-va-gl’. I had previously compiled this in OE, but now the build-arch is x86_64 and the target-arch is aarch64.

    • Games

      • Lutris game manager v0.5.8.3 out, requires contributors to agree to a CLA

        For regular Linux gamers, Lutris is pretty much a household name by now. For those that aren’t – Lutris is a game manager allowing you to sort through all your games from various stores.

        Not only that it also allows you to manage emulators for your favourite classics, Windows games using the Wine compatibility layer and quite a lot more. It’s very useful and they continue polishing up the overall experience after a huge update went out late last year.

      • Critters for Sale is super weird, first episode out free and the rest this year | GamingOnLinux

        Love you wild adventures? Critters for Sale is one you should take a look at because this is the second time I’ve played it and I still have no idea what the hell is going on.

        Originally released on itch.io back in 2019 which I mentioned here, and a contributor also took a look later, it’s now seen a first episode release on Steam with Critters for Sale: SNAKE. It’s so bizarre! A point and click visual novel adventure, one that’s black and white with a bunch of animated scenes in the middle of the screen.

      • Scarlet Hood and the Wicked Wood from The Coma devs launches February 10

        Scarlet Hood and the Wicked Wood is going to take you on an adventure that loops over with twists and turns, featuring a narrative time-loop like some kind of Groundhog Day. Developed by Devespresso (The Coma & The Coma 2) and published by Headup, it sounds pretty Oz-esque and amusing with the recognizable Devespresso Games manhwa-style.

        Initially starting off in Early Access, they’ve now announced it will begin on February 10. The roadmap to release suggests the final version will be live in March with one third of the story chapters already available. They’re using Early Access mainly to ensure the full release is nice and smooth.

      • Try the demo for Bittersweet Birthday, a creepy action game with you being hunted

        Bittersweet Birthday is an upcoming action game set inside a mysterious building. You wake up dazed and confused, there’s people after you but someone is trying to help you escape. An interesting setting full of intrigue, with each fight being a unique combat encounter.

        “Bittersweet Birthday is an action game where every combat encounter is a challenging and unique fight. You can also explore different areas and help many of the NPC populating them with their everyday struggles while learning more about the world and its history.”

      • Empire building terminal game Arcane Fortune adds trade, nobility, assassination | GamingOnLinux

        Inspired by the likes of Dwarf Fortress, Civilization, SimCity and more we have the free and open source Arcane Fortune which continues to expanding in features. Played in your favourite command-line terminal application, or just use the pre-made launch script it comes with that sorts out everything for you.

        Seems like it has some genuinely great ideas, and considering how ridiculously popular Dwarf Fortress is, we know that shiny graphics are not a key to success. Perhaps Arcane Fortune will be able to carve out a nice niche.

      • Open-world voxel sandbox game Rising World is going through a rewrite | GamingOnLinux

        After entering Early Access in 2014, JIW-Games have been rewriting their open world sandbox game Rising World to move away from Java and instead use the Unity game engine.

        They actually announced this back in 2019, as part of a post mentioning how changes to the Valve algorithm for showing games had dropped off their store page traffic dramatically. They said about wanting to rework a lot of it and Unity would help them achieve this.

        Back in December they finally showed off the result of their efforts, with a massive overhaul available in Beta that’s now using Unity and they’re continuing to support Linux.

      • Free and open source modern level editor LDtk has a huge new release

        LDtk (prev called LEd) is an in-development free and open source level editor, one that’s modern and designed to be as user-friendly as possible designed by a former dev on Dead Cells.

        A big release just went out out with the 0.7.0 version, which the developer explained has “many important changes to make LDtk production ready and future proof. These changes will allow better support for large projects, better API creation and maintenance, and smoother user adoption”.

      • VICE v3.5 | Versatile Commodore Emulator on openSUSE

        I recently received a little bit of a ribbing, I suppose, via email about not writing about emulators that were not of the Nintendo vintage. This is a fair criticism, I probably spend more time messing with Commodore 64 things such as chatting on IRC with a Commodore 64 or playing with my new THEC64 Maxi (more on that at a later date).

        I have been doing some dabbling with the Commodore 64 again, but instead of just running or configuring things, I am interested in doing some application development. Instead of playing, doing something useful and practical. For real. That said, on a fresh clean installation of openSUSE Tumbleweed on my HP EliteBook I decided to install the latest VICE Emulator using the Open Build Service and do a little poking and playing around. It had been a while since I used the emulator.


        Generally, it is more common to see some sort of Raspberry Pi OS or Debian based system as a retro gaming machine but the fine folks of the openSUSE community keep the repos up to date to have the latest in retro Commodore experiences. I love seeing the work being done to keep the Commodore experience alive. I know that much of this work has trickled into other projects which is what make the community based open source projects so wonderful.

        I do want to highlight two individuals that are directly responsible for my excellent experience on openSUSE: Wolfgang Bauer and Karol Sławiński. You see these two names on the package change log for the last year. My sincere thank you goes to them.

        If you haven’t kicked the tires of VICE recently, I highly recommend downloading version 3.5 and giving it another try. The GUI is better, the sound and video is better, the system controls are better based on the change log, the underpinnings are better. I think you will be pleasantly surprised on this refreshed experience.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • Whisker Menu 2.5.3 released

        - Fix invalid command expansion with Xfce 4.14 (Issue #39)
        - Translation updates: Basque, Portuguese (Brazil)

      • Xfce’s Thunar File Manager Gets Split View, File Creation Times, and More

        Thunar 4.17 is here as the first milestone towards the next major release that will be part of the upcoming Xfce 4.18 desktop environment, which is now in early development. I know many of you love and use Thunar, so here’s a look at the major new features coming to your Xfce desktop environment.

        The big news is that Thunar now finally features a split view, allowing you to use the file manager as a dual-pane file explorer/commander. I bet many of you were hoping for this feature, so here it is and you’ll be able to use soon on your Xfce desktop, hopefully later this year.

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • The Kate Text Editor – January 2021

          It not only got some nice visual refresh but a much better fuzzy matching algorithm.

          The fuzzy matching algorithm is on its way to be upstream to KCoreAddons to be used by more parts of the KDE universe.

          Praise to Waqar Ahmed for implementing this and pushing it to upstream. And thanks to Forrest Smith for allowing us to use his matching algorithm under LGPLv2+!


          As you can see on our team page a lot of new people helped out in the scope of the last year. I hope to see more people showing up there as new contributors. It is a pleasure that Waqar Ahmed & Jan Paul Batrina now have full KDE developer accounts!

          Especially Waqar came up with a lot of nifty ideas what could be fixed/improved/added and he did already do a lot of work to actually get these things done!

          I actually wanted to write earlier about what cool new stuff is there, but had too much review requests to look after. Great! ;=) No I can read review request instead of light novels in the evening.

        • Contributing to Konsole

          I never thought I could contribute with Open Source, or even imagined I could change my workspace, in my mind doing it was beyond my programming skills.

          I was a Windows user for a long time, until one day I couldn’t stand anymore how the system was so slow, it was not a top computer, but it was a reasonable one to be that slow.

          So I changed to Debian and used it for a time until change to other distros, but I was amazed how fast it was, of course I couldn’t use all of the same programs I used to work with but I did learn new ones.

        • KDE Plasma 5.21: Everything You Need to Know

          KDE Plasma 5.21 is out and in a Beta way. Just because we are dealing with a Beta version of this Linux-based desktop environment does not imply we shouldn’t be at the edge of our seats. It is a test, and every test needs a pass mark. That is why the Linux community exists; to approve all running tests. Plasma 5.21 Beta has not lost its pretty UI touch. All its Beta upgrades we will discuss are redirected towards improving the usability index of every Linux user that fancy it.

        • Pikasso, a simple drawing application in QtQuick with Rust

          Following my last blog post about using Rust and Lyon to create custom shapes. I’m happy to announce the creation of Pikasso, a very simple drawing program intended to be used on Plasma Mobile.

          Pikasso is very basic and only supports drawing with the mouse/finger and adding rectangles and circles to the scene. An undo feature is also available as well as the possibility to export your beautiful artworks to SVGs. As you can see, Pikasso is not intended to be replacements for Krita. If you want a powerful drawing application just use Krita, it’s awesome. The scope of Pikasso is more similar to Kolourpaint or Paint.exe and intended for children to play a bit with it on Plasma Mobile.

    • Distributions

      • Reviews

        • Tiny Core Linux Installation and Review

          The OS architectures supported by Tiny Core Linux are x86. X86_64, and ARM processors. It may not be a complete package for a functional Linux distro or flavor, but the freedom and flexibility it offers is out of the box. Under Tiny Core Linux, you get to push your OS around rather than your OS pushing you around like in other platforms. The speed and simplicity under this Linux distro cannot be substituted. Moreover, the absence of a Desktop environment distractions under its user experience is another plus. It gifts you the perfect tinkering experience due to its lightweight nature.

        • Review: Mabox Linux 20.10

          For me, running Mabox was a curious experience. The reason being that the distribution never seemed to do anything objectively wrong or buggy. Everything worked properly, the system was fast, stable, and often offered multiple approaches to accomplishing tasks. Mabox inherits Arch Linux’s large repositories of software and the cutting-edge packages which make its grandparent famous. The lightweight Openbox window manager is flexible and fast. Plus I like that Mabox doesn’t ship a lot of applications, just some good basics, and gives us multiple tools to add more items we might want. However, Mabox never felt like a good fit for me.

          It’s hard to put my finger on why exactly this was because the distribution, objectively, does a lot of things well. However, the style of the distribution isn’t at all to my taste. The Openbox session is very busy and I like quiet interfaces. Mabox is a cutting-edge rolling release and I like static and boring. Mabox has a tonne of status panels, shortcuts, and an elegant welcome screen. I want my operating system to stay out of the way and not distract me. Mabox has many configuration tools and they all seem to work, but the number of them (and the lack of a central organization for them) can make it harder to find the options I want to adjust.

          I guess what made the experience feel odd is Mabox uses a really minimal window manager, but with all the bells and whistles enabled. It ships with very few desktop applications, yet the menu is crowded with options. The system looks really sleek and modern, but a lot of options require we tweak text-based configuration files by hand. It makes for an odd series of juxtapositions.

          Objectively, I think Mabox is quite good. The only real bug I ran into was Firefox and the desktop panel using the same shortcut, but otherwise the system was fast, smooth, and capable. It just has an unusual approach to several aspects of it. Which makes me feel the distribution is objectively good, but subjectively not to my taste.

      • New Releases

        • NuTyX 20.12.1 available with cards 2.4.124

          I am very happy to announce the new version of NuTyX 20.12.1 and cards 2.4.124.

          The compilation chain is completely rebuilt in addition to glibc 2.32, gcc 10.2.0 and binutils 2.34

          The xorg-server graphics server version 1.20.10, the Mesa 3D library in 20.3.2, gtk3 3.24.24 and qt 5.15.2 are also in their latest versions.

          The python interpreters are ent 3.9.0 and 2.7.18.

          The XFCE desktop environment is updated to version 4.14.3.

          The MATE desktop environment is also updated to version 1.24, the latest version available.

          The KDE desktop environment is available in Plasma 5.20.4, Framework 5.76.0 and applications in 20.12.1. et les applications en 20.12.1.

          Available browsers are: firefox 84.0.2, chromium 87.0.4280.88, falkon 3.1.0, epiphany 3.38.2, etc

          Many desktop applications have been updated as well like thunderbird 78.6.1, Scribus, libreoffice, gimp 2.10.22, etc.

          Core NuTyX ships with Long Term Support (LTS) kernels: 4.9.253, 4.14.217, 4.19.170, 5.4.92 and 5.10.10 and the latest stable version 5.10.10.

        • Qubes OS 4.0.4-rc2 has been released!

          We’re pleased to announce the second release candidate for Qubes OS 4.0.4.

      • BSD

        • OpenBSD KDE Status Report

          But today we can be happy about an up-to-date KDE stack in OpenBSD. Currently – at the end of January – our stack is very up-to-date: [...]

      • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandriva/OpenMandriva Family

      • SUSE/OpenSUSE

        • openSUSE Tumbleweed – Review of the week 2021/03

          Dear Tumbleweed users and hackers,

          Shame on me for giving you the information about the changes in Tumbleweed during this week only now, but at least technically this is still the review of Week 03. Since the last weekly review, there have been 6 snapshots published (0114, 0115, 0118, 0119, 0120, and 0121).

        • Beneath the code: SUSE Enterprise Linux construction mechanics – Open Source Insider

          As every good developer knows, when you want to learn more about what a platform or tools provider is bringing through the release pipeline: ignore the news, delete the press releases, don’t look at the advertisements… read the coder blogs instead.

          Microsoft’s MSDN has adopted this approach for most of the last decade and it is – very arguably – where the real meat (or plant-based protein substitutes with soya-enrichment) is.

          Also well versed in this practice is German open source operating system softwarehaus SUSE.


          Last but not least, Moutoussamy talks about the openSUSE community and how SUSE wants to share more than just code.

          “So next we will talk about some of the underlying processes glueing everything together but also about the great tool we are using: Open Build Service (build) and openQA (test),” he concludes.

          Can we imagine that one day, all technology vendors will talk about the way they actually build code and perform rollout cadence and express the need to balance open source community and commercial requirements in a product that still, ultimately, progresses forward year-on-year? We can dream, surely.

      • Debian Family

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Ubuntu Mate On The Raspberry PI 400

          In a previous article I reviewed the desktop version of Ubuntu on the Raspberry PI 4.

          I came up against quite a few issues whilst using Ubuntu on the PI 4 with the main one being performance. In my opinion running the GNOME desktop on a Raspberry PI is never going to work because GNOME takes too many resources. This isn’t a criticism of GNOME because on a laptop with higher specifications it is a decent desktop environment.

          I received a few criticisms and comments during that review. One of the criticisms was that I should have overclocked the Raspberry PI 4.

          The main comment that I received multiple times is that I should have used Ubuntu Mate.

          So here we are. I have installed Ubuntu Mate and I have been using it for about a month and I am going to share with you my experience.

        • Ubuntu 21.04 Release Date & Planned Features

          While development on Ubuntu 21.04 is still (somewhat) early, rumours are already circling about what to expect from the release that Ubuntu developers have dubbed the “Hirsute Hippo”.

          In this post we rundown everything we know so far, including when Ubuntu 21.04 will be released, how long it’ll be supported for, and what kind of new features and key changes its likely to include.

        • Ubuntu 20.10 on the Raspberry Pi 4 Rocks: A Review

          Canonical released Ubuntu 20.10 (Groovy Gorilla) at the end of October 2020, and it’s the first release of the popular GNU/Linux distribution to offer an Ubuntu Desktop image for Raspberry Pi computers, supporting only Raspberry Pi 4 and Raspberry Pi 400 models.

          Ubuntu was already available for the Raspberry Pi, but only as a server, supporting Raspberry Pi 2 and later models. Now, Canonical gives us the opportunity to turn our tiny devices into versatile office or home office computers that can do pretty much anything you throw at them.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • How open source is helping solve the plastic pollution problem

        In my work life, I often deal with geospatial data. This data not only carries the customary sorts of attributes we see every day but also geographic attributes, like points, lines, enclosed areas, polygons, and surfaces. This data is typically projected from latitude, longitude, and sea-level-elevation data to other coordinate systems to facilitate analysis and viewing.

        One of the things I find odd about dealing with geospatial data is how much it is monetized and bound up in restrictive license agreements. If you search for “geospatial data” using your favorite search engine, you’ll probably see several pages of links to organizations that sell data or create and sell geospatial analysis and visualization software, all under restrictive licensing. But if you dig deeper, you’ll find some wonderful open data and open source software.

      • 7 ways open source was essential to business in 2020

        The COVID-19 pandemic created many new challenges for businesses in 2020 as they rapidly moved non-essential workers to remote operations. However, it also created tremendous opportunities for innovation as people searched for effective ways to work and collaborate virtually.

        Opensource.com responded to the need by publishing a variety of articles in 2020 on working better with open source. Since it appears working remotely is here to stay for the foreseeable future, make sure you’re doing everything you can to adapt by reading the top seven articles about open source business from 2020.

      • What does “open source” mean in 2021?

        The licensing discourse in the last few weeks has highlighted a difference between what “open source” means and what we’re talking about when we use the term. Strictly speaking, open source software is software released under a license approved by the Open Source Initiative. In most practical usage, we’re talking about software developed in a particular way. When we talk about open source, we talk about the communities of users and developers, (generally) not the license. “Open source” has come to define an ethos that was all have our own definition of.

      • Open-Source Apache CloudStack 4.15 Gets New Look

        The mature open-source cloud infrastructure platform project gets a major update, boasting a new user interface and improved storage subsystem features.

      • Web Browsers

        • Chromium

          • Use Chromium? Sync Features Will Stop Working on March 15

            Users of the Chromium web browser are about to lose access to several key features, including bookmark and password sync.

            Google is cutting off access to a number of private APIs used in Chromium builds from March 15, 2021.

            Among the APIs nixed are those supporting the browser’s account syncing services, translation, and spell checking.

        • Mozilla

          • Mozilla Firefox 85 Is Now Available for Download, This Is What’s New

            Firefox 85 is the first release of the popular open-source and cross-platform web browser to drop support for the Adobe Flash Player plugin. This means that you won’t be able to re-enable Flash support, especially because the Flash plugin has stopped loading Flash content since January 12th, 2021.

            Now that Flash is gone, let’s take a look at the new features as Firefox 85 comes with a major privacy feature called “Network partitioning,” which promises to improve your privacy while surfing the Web by partitioning the network resources instead of sharing them to eliminate cross-site tracking.

      • FSF

        • GNU Projects

          • GNU Binutils 2.36 Released With Support For Intel AMX, AVX VNNI, Key Locker – Phoronix

            GNU Binutils 2.36 is out today as the latest version of this collection of binary utilities for Linux/open-source systems.

            As usual the x86_64 space for today’s Binutils update is fairly eventful around supporting new CPU instructions. There is now support for AVX VNNI, HRESET, UINTR, TDX, AMX and Intel Key Locker instructions. All these additions are fairly notable for new and upcoming CPUs, especially the likes of the Advanced Matrix Extensions (AMX) and AVX (non-AVX-512) VNNI. Intel’s open-source developers continue doing a good job on ensuring timely support for new CPU features in the Linux space.

          • gcc 11: libgccjit is no longer ‘alpha’
          • GCC’s JIT Library Is No Longer Considered “Alpha” Quality – Phoronix

            With the upcoming GCC 11 compiler release the GNU compiler’s just-in-time (JIT) library is no longer considered to be of alpha quality.

            Libgccjit is considered production quality with GCC 11. GCC 5 was released nearly six years ago already and with that release came the introduction of this GCC JIT library initially developed by Red Hat’s compiler experts. It was initially written as an embed-friendly library, to be used by bytecode interpreters and other potential use-cases with there even having been an experimental Python compiler.

          • GTK4 Toolkit Seeing More Improvements To Its OpenGL Renderer – Phoronix

            While GTK 4.0 has been released, there still is major work to look forward to with future GTK4 releases. One area seeing recent and ongoing improvements is with the toolkit’s OpenGL renderer.

            Even though GTK4 has a Vulkan renderer, the OpenGL renderer is still of interest for cross-platform support particularly for macOS where Vulkan doesn’t exist unless employing MoltenVK. There is also still legacy and other cases like the Nouveau driver stack where Vulkan isn’t available, thus in 2021 working on the OpenGL renderer still pays off.

      • Programming/Development

        • A Beginner’s Guide to R Programming | EC-Council Blog

          R is a free software environment for statistical computing and graphics. It is used for complex analysis such as correlation, clustering, and data reduction. Learn everything about the fundamental programming concepts in R and more.

        • Perl/Raku

          • gfldex: Chain calling

            When working with IO::Path we have to take platform dependent directory separator into account. To alleviate the problem .add was added. Surprisingly there is no candidate that takes a list. So we have to chain method calls as if we would use an inferior language.

        • Python

          • Pyston 2.1 Is Blowing Past Python 3.8/3.9 Performance

            With this past week’s release of Pyston 2.1 as an alternative Python interpreter I was curious to see how the performance compared to that of upstream Python… So here are some weekend benchmarks with a Ryzen 9 5900X system.

            On a Ryzen 9 5900X system running Ubuntu 20.10, I ran a few Python benchmarks using its stock Python 3.8.6 installation, Python 3.9.1 as the latest upstream and built from source in an optimized mode, and then the Pyston 2.1 x86_64 Linux binary. Pyston 2.x still is (sadly) binary-only for now.

        • Java

    • Standards/Consortia

      • Perceived Relations Between Gopher Gemini and HTTP

        This piece is written with the expectation that it will attract:

        * Those who are Gopher and Gemini enthusiasts,
        * Those who are the above and have the opinion I’m wrong,
        * Or those who have heard the two and want to know a bit more about them and their relation to the current web.

  • Leftovers

    • 3 stress-free steps to tackling your task list

      In prior years, this annual series covered individual apps. This year, we are looking at all-in-one solutions in addition to strategies to help in 2021. Welcome to day 14 of 21 Days of Productivity in 2021.


      Even then, I had to break these tasks down into smaller pieces—download the software, configure NGINX, validate the installs…you get the idea. And that’s OK. A plan, or set of tasks, is not set in stone and can be changed as needed.

    • Dr. Brad J. Cox Ph.D. 1944 – 2021

      [...] Dr. Cox was an entrepreneur, having founded the Stepstone Company together with Tom Love for releasing the first Objective-C implementation. Stepstone hoped to sell “ICPaks” and Dr. Cox focused on building his ICPak libraries and hired a team to continue work on Objective-C, including Steve Naroff. The late Steve Jobs’, NeXT, licensed the Objective-C language for it’s new operating system, NEXTSTEP. NeXT eventually acquired Objective- C from Stepstone. Objective-C continued to be the primary programming language for writing software for Apple’s OS X and iOS.

    • The Postal Service Survived the Election. But It Was Crushed by Holiday Packages.

      In December, amid a crush of packages and record numbers of coronavirus cases, service performance across the U.S. Postal Service network plummeted to the lowest levels in years, with only about 64 percent of first-class mail delivered on time around Christmas.

    • Tech flight: Why Silicon Valley is heading to Miami and Austin, Texas

      While Silicon Valley is by no means ceasing to be the center of the technology industry, there is an undeniable migration afoot for some of Silicon Valley’s elite to cities like Miami: Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian moved from San Francisco in 2017. A year later, Shervin Pishevar, a venture capitalist, bought a house in Miami Beach in 2018. In late 2020, Jonathan Oringer, who founded Shutterstock and became an investor, moved to Miami, as did other notable venture capitalists, including Keith Rabois and David Blumberg.

      It’s not just Miami experiencing this migration. Last month, Oracle, the tech giant, announced it is moving its corporate headquarters from Redwood City, California, to Austin, Texas. Other such moves include Palantir, which decamped for Denver, while Musk said last month he had moved himself to Austin. Hewlett Packard Enterprise also announced last month it was moving its headquarters from San Jose, California, in favor of a Houston suburb.

    • Science

      • Will the last entrepreneurial person leaving the Bay Area please turn off the lights?

        Is this the time that it really happens, when the Bay Area finally begins to lose its ability to attract and keep the critical mass of innovative employees necessary to maintain the region’s primacy in the hi-tech world? Is it really the time to ask: Will the last entrepreneurial person to leave please turn off the lights?


        Point taken, but still, consider the following. In December 2020, Hewlett-Packard Enterprises, popularly known as HPE (created as part of the 2015 split of the Hewlett-Packard company), announced that it was moving its headquarters to Houston. HPE focuses on servers, storage, networking, consulting, and support. Younger Kat readers may not appreciate that the founding of the Hewlett-Packard company in Palo Alto in 1939 is often recognized as the beginning of Silicon Valley.

        But being an icon can only take one so far. Thus, while HPE is a Fortune 500 company, still, hand over heart, the core of HPE seems a bit to the side of cutting edge, hi-tech Silicon Valley. This is supported by the relocation choice of Houston rather than Austin.

        Still, Bowles is probably right, to the extent that the flagship companies of the Bay Area hi-tech seem to be staying put, at least for the moment. This suggests that the movement of workers out of the area, as described by Bowles, is not (yet, at least) materially affecting the activities of these core Bay Area companies.

    • Hardware

      • Taking The Full Measure Of Power Servers – IT Jungle

        It is with that in mind that we turn to IBM’s server sales in the fourth quarter of 2020, which were reported on late last week. IBM’s overall revenues continue to slide as it shrinks and it divests itself of businesses, and even as it adds Red Hat to the mix. Sales across all product lines and geographies were off 6.5 percent to $20.37 billion, and after a $2.04 billion restructuring writeoff, net income was down by 63.1 percent to $1.36 billion. By the time IBM has spun off its NewCo managed infrastructure services business, which has about $19 billion in sales later this year, it will pare down to about $59 billion in sales for the remaining company.

        Overall sales of servers, storage, switching to IBM’s direct end user customers and its channel were $2.5 billion, down 17.8 percent, and internal sales of this stuff to other IBM divisions accounted for another $196 million. Total System group sales, therefore, were just under $2.7 billion, down 16.8 percent, with the hardware being $2.09 billion and operating systems being $408 million. The System group had a pre-tax income of $455 million, off 43.3 percent year on year. Not a great quarter, but there was a tough compare to the System z15 launch at the end of 2019 for one thing and a global pandemic for another. Neither Arvind Krishna, IBM’s chief executive officer, nor James Kavanaugh, the company’s chief financial officer, had much to say about the Power Systems line, although as usual they did chat a bit about the System z mainframe. Power Systems sales were off 16 percent at constant currency, and System z sales were down 24 percent, with storage down 17 percent.

      • Dissecting the Apple M1 GPU, part II

        Less than a month ago, I began investigating the Apple M1 GPU in hopes of developing a free and open-source driver. This week, I’ve reached a second milestone: drawing a triangle with my own open-source code. The vertex and fragment shaders are handwritten in machine code, and I interface with the hardware via the IOKit kernel driver in an identical fashion to the system’s Metal userspace driver.

    • Health/Nutrition

      • Dr. Birx Criticized for Failing to Speak Out on Trump’s ‘Parallel Data’: Her ‘Legacy is One of Sycophancy and Failure’

        ‘Dr. Birx went out of her way to praise Trump and just straight up lied’

      • Mad Dog Time

        Johnson signalled this at the very start of the pandemic, openly mulling the idea of “taking the blow,” letting the pandemic sweep through the country while keeping the economy open, unlike those loser nations such as New Zealand and China with their timorous lockdowns. Britain would then emerge “like Clark Kent turning into Superman” (he actually said this) to lead the world as a “champion of free trade.” But when his own scientific advisers pointed out this “strategy” would lead to at least 100,000 deaths or more, the public outcry forced Johnson into the stealth strategy he is still employing. The result has been an erratic minimalism, characterized by seemingly bizarre reversals and stupefying cock-ups, which have plunged the country into a spasmodic cycle of lockdowns, ever-deepening economic ruin and a death count of … yes, 100,000, and rising.

        But there is nothing really bizarre about the seeming inability of the Johnson jokers to suppress the virus. Because they aren’t trying to suppress the virus. They lurch from one ineffective approach to another because there is no central plan – and no desire – to combat Covid. Their “policies” are mostly a series of feints and dodges designed to keep the NHS from collapse while waiting for the deus a vaccinum to save the day. Meanwhile, they are doling out tens of billions of pounds in no-bid government contracts to cronies, donors and old university chums for “pandemic response” programs that have been astonishing, catastrophic failures.

      • Don’t Forget About Flint. The Roots of Its Water Crisis Remain Unaddressed.

        When I first heard E. Yvonne Lewis tell the story, it was a hot July day in downtown Flint, Michigan. We and about 70 others had gathered in the high-ceilinged ballroom of the Northbank Center, just west of the river, where the Michigan Civil Rights Commission was conducting its 2016 hearings on how this Great Lakes city learned that its own water was a threat.

      • Dutch Police Clash With Anti-Lockdown Protesters in 2 Cities

        It was the worst violence to hit the Netherlands since the pandemic began and the second straight Sunday that police clashed with protesters in Amsterdam. The country has been in a tough lockdown since mid-December that is set to continue at least until Feb. 9. The government beefed up the lockdown with a 9 p.m. to 4:30 a.m. curfew that went into force Saturday.

        Justice Minister Ferd Grapperhaus condemned the violence.

      • DoorDash and UberEats are raising prices on some takeout orders
      • Dr. Birx: Trump presented graphs that I never made
    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Microsoft and SAP Extend Partnership

          Microsoft and SAP have announced an extension of their existing partnership, one that will see Microsoft Teams integrated into SAP’s suite of products.

        • Security

          • PoC exploit available for SAP Solution Manager flaw

            A serious vulnerability in SAP Solution Manager would allow an attacker can authenticate to vulnerable systems by simply trying to connect, a local researcher has warned, adding that a proof-of-concept exploit is circulating.

          • Ransomware Attackers Publish 4K Private Scottish Gov Agency Files

            On the heels of a ransomware attack against the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA), attackers have now reportedly published more than 4,000 files stolen from the agency – including contracts and strategy documents.

            After hitting SEPA on Christmas Eve with the attack, cybercriminals encrypted 1.2GB of information. The attack has affected SEPA’s email systems, which remain offline as of Thursday, according to the agency. However, SEPA, which Scotland’s environmental regulator, stressed on Thursday that it will not “engage” with the cybercriminals.

          • Discord-Stealing Malware Invades npm Packages

            The CursedGrabber Discord malware family, discovered in November, targets Windows hosts. It contains two .exe files which are invoked and executed via ‘postinstall’ scripts from the manifest file, ‘package.json’. One of the .exe files scans user profiles from multiple web browsers along with Discord leveldb files, steals Discord tokens, steals credit-card information, and sends user data via a webhook to the attacker. The second unpacks additional code with multiple capabilities, including privilege escalation, keylogging, taking screenshots, planting backdoors, accessing webcams and so on.

            In the case of the three npm packages, these “contain variations of Discord token-stealing code from the Discord malware discovered by Sonatype on numerous occasions,” said Sonatype security researcher Ax Sharma, in a Friday blog posting.

          • Fear, Uncertainty, Doubt/Fear-mongering/Dramatisation

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • Zuckerberg’s Biden problem

              Before the Cambridge Analytica story had broken. Before Facebook’s acknowledgement that its platform had been used to help incite ethnic cleansing in Myanmar. Before the WhatsApp lynchings in India. Before QAnon and the Proud Boys – Mark Zuckerberg had the world at his feet.

              So much so in fact, that at the start of 2017 he decided to tour America.

            • FTC settles with photo storage app that pivoted to facial recognition

              The Federal Trade Commission has reached a settlement with photo storage app Ever that it says used customers’ photos to develop facial recognition technology without telling them, the agency announced Monday.

              Under the terms of the agreement, Everalbum Inc. is required to delete photos and videos of its users who deactivated their accounts, as well as any facial recognition algorithms developed with users’ photos or videos. The company also must delete all “face embeddings,” which it describes as “data reflecting facial features that can be used for facial recognition purposes” that were derived from users’ photos who didn’t give consent for their use.

              Everalbum, which shut down Ever in August and rebranded itself as Paravision AI, is also prohibited from misrepresenting how it collects and uses personal information and how it protects users’ privacy. If it markets software to consumers for personal use, the company has to obtain express consent before using any biometric information it collects from users to create face embeddings or to develop facial recognition technology.

            • US Defense Intelligence Agency admits buying location data off brokers
    • Defence/Aggression

      • Lawmakers move to oust extremists from military

        Lawmakers are taking matters into their own hands to prevent white supremacists and other extremists from joining and remaining in the military.

        Following the deadly Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol — and the subsequent revelation that nearly 1 in 5 people charged in connection with the riot have some form of military background — Congress plans to insert language into this year’s National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) to address extremism at the Pentagon and other federal agencies.

      • Capitol [Insurrection] Puts Spotlight on ‘Apocalyptically Minded’ Global Far Right

        And it is. Adherents of racist far-right movements around the world share more than a common cause. German extremists have traveled to the United States for sniper competitions. American neo-Nazis have visited counterparts in Europe. Militants from different countries bond in training camps from Russia and Ukraine to South Africa.

        For years far-right extremists traded ideology and inspiration on societies’ fringes and in the deepest realms of the internet. Now, the events of Jan. 6 at the U.S. Capitol have laid bare their violent potential.

      • Kyle Rittenhouse’s Bail Terms Amended After Footage of Him at Bar Flashing ‘White Power’ Signs

        Now Rittenhouse is outright prohibited from drinking alcohol, having any weapons, and associating with the kind of people who reportedly greeted him with cheers at the bar and serenaded him with the song “Proud of Your Boy,” which is apparently what the white supremacist Proud Boy group uses as their anthem.

      • Kenosha killing suspect Kyle Rittenhouse’s bond terms changed after bar visit

        Prosecutors sought to change his bond conditions after they alleged Rittenhouse was at a bar in Mount Pleasant with his mother on Jan. 5.

        While there, Rittenhouse drank three beers and was serenaded by five men with a song used as an anthem for the far-right group the Proud Boys, prosecutors said in the motion. He also was seen on video flashing the “OK” sign, which prosecutors said has been co-opted by white supremacist groups.

        Rittenhouse’s attorney has said in court papers that he is not and has never been a member of a white supremacist group. The attorney said Rittenhouse did not object to the new bond conditions.

        While in other parts of the country one must be 21 years old to legally drink alcohol, in Wisconsin people younger than that can drink if they are with a parent.

      • Afghan Official: 600 Freed Taliban Prisoners Rearrested

        Afghanistan’s national security adviser, Hamdullah Mohib, made the announcement Sunday, alleging the men in question had returned to the battlefield to plot deadly attacks against government forces and civilians.

        Under the February 2020 U.S.-Taliban deal, the government had released more than 5,000 insurgent prisoners in exchange for 1,000 security personnel.

      • The pandemic is no excuse to shut the door on refugee resettlement

        COVID-19 is one of the biggest global challenges in modern history, and all nations are grappling with its impacts. But some countries have responded by shutting their doors even further to the world’s most vulnerable.
        Many refugees have lost access to their livelihoods and been pushed to the brink of destitution. Some have even been forced to return to the country they fled, through deportation, or due to a lack of options in their host country. By and large, resettlement and other migration pathways have become increasingly limited during the pandemic.
        At a time when refugees need solidarity from the international community, countries like Australia and the United States have reduced the number of refugees allowed to resettle during 2021.
        Australia cut its resettlement programme by nearly 30 percent; in 2021, the country will allow a maximum of 13,750 refugees to enter. In the United States, the 2021 fiscal year cap has been slashed to just 15,000 people – an all-time low after welcoming more than five times as many as recently as 2016.
        In the past, both countries have played a positive role in helping refugees resettle – Australia through generous support and integration programmes, and the US by traditionally welcoming the bulk of the world’s resettled refugees, at least by absolute numbers.
        The pandemic is no excuse to shut the door. Countries with far fewer resources continue to host the vast majority of the world’s refugees. Wealthy nations around the globe can do more to help ease the burden.

    • Environment

      • A quarter of all known bee species haven’t been seen since the 1990s

        The number of bee species recorded worldwide has been sharply decreasing since the 1990s.

        Eduardo Zattara and Marcelo Aizen at the National University of Comahue in Argentina analysed how many wild bee species are observed each year as recorded in the Global Biodiversity Information Facility – a publicly available platform where researchers and citizens can record sightings of bee species.

        They found that there were a quarter fewer species reported between 2006 and 2015, as compared with the records we have from before 1990.

        The decline is especially alarming considering the number of bee records in this database has increased by around 55 per cent since 2000, so it isn’t down to a lack of observations.

      • Energy

      • Wildlife/Nature

        • Group seeks protection for 600-year-old tree

          The tree, named ‘Royal Teak Tree’ by the people, could be the second tallest tree in Myanmar, said the leader.

          It measures 188 feet in height and has a circumference of 25 feet and six inches. The tallest tree from Banmauk town in Sagaing region is only about one to two feet taller than it.

        • Opinion | Burning Questions About the Future of Pacific Northwest Forests

          Climate change has played an overarching role in the blazes, but a perfect storm of government mismanagement – privatization, lax enforcement, and outright corruption – has contributed a major share

    • Finance

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • ‘Jim Crow Relic’: Progressives Ramp Up Efforts to Finally Get Rid of Filibuster

        On the Filibuster: Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez: “A Cherished Tool of Segragationists”; former President Barack Obama: “Jim Crow Relic”; and ex-Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid: “Outlived Its Usefulness.”

      • Opinion | Why Liberal Anti-Fascism Upholds the Status Quo

        Late capitalist normality produced Trumpism. Liberal anti-fascism obscures this fact.

      • ED’S DESK: Yahoo Reporter Breaks Story About Daily Tele Story About Channel 7 Story

        ED’S DESK is a new semi-regular column by New Matilda, where we give readers an inside look at the sub-editing process involved in news-making. Or at least, we give you an inside look at what should have been the sub-editing process to correct a steaming pile of sh*t story that actually got published, despite holes in it you could drive a truck through.

      • Trump-Linked Lobbyists Made Big Money From Clients Seeking Last-Minute Pardons
      • An Incredible Omission

        Astonishingly, the unprecedented Order from the Scottish Parliament to the Crown Office to hand over documents does not include the text messages between Peter Murrell and Sue Ruddick, which Murrell lied to parliament did not exist. In fact Peter Murrell does not feature in the request at all.

      • Opinion | In Defense of Civility

        Trump’s rhetoric promoted the January 6th insurrection

      • In interview, Dr. Fauci discusses death threats and the letter he opened that splashed powder on him
      • Twitter Latin America coordinator exposed as right-wing operative, amid anti-AMLO social media purge
      • Biden’s First Days Signal Significant Shift From Trump on Labor and Economy
      • Trump’s Empire

        A comprehensive examination of the Trump administration’s policies demonstrates that across many issues, his presidency was significantly worse than its predecessor, despite both being defined by hyper-militarist policies. At day’s end, both presidents will be remembered for keeping the war machine humming and for the politics of limited-engagement militarism via their avoidance of long-term commitments to large concentrations of ground troops in major military conflicts. Obama’s first term was largely a continuation of the George W. Bush administration’s commitment to large numbers of “boots on the ground” in the “War on Terrorism.” Bush committed more than 160,000 troops to the Iraq war at its height in 2007, and Obama committed more than 100,000 troops to Afghanistan at the height of his escalation from 2010 to 2011.

        While massive troop escalations characterized Bush’s foreign policy in both of his terms, Obama moved toward a “militarist-lite” version of U.S. empire by the mid-2010s, with the war in Iraq having ended, and with Obama’s “surge” of troops in Afghanistan being reduced to the levels that Trump inherited when he assumed office. In the late Obama years, troop concentrations in Afghanistan ranged from 10,000 to 20,000 a year, where they consistently stayed throughout most of Trump’s term. So when we talk of the Obama administration, it’s important to recognize that we’re really talking about two administrations – the one that mimicked the Bush administration and its boots-on-the-ground heavy “War on Terror” during the Democrat’s first term, and the imperial-lite administration of his second term that was marked by other forms of militarism, including a heavy reliance on drone strikes, light troop deployments in conflict zones, and conventional bombing campaigns. These tactics continued to be employd during Trump’s term, amidst a modest troop reduction in Afghanistan that was instituted in 2020.

      • Nixon Impeachment Witness: Cruz and Hawley Should Have No Part in Trump Trial
      • Thousands Detained As Russians Rally To Support Navalny In Biggest Nationwide Protests In Years

        Thousands of Russians were detained across the country amid protests calling for the release of opposition leader Aleksei Navalny, with riot police cracking down violently on what were Russia’s biggest anti-government demonstrations in years.

        It was unclear what effect the January 23 protests, which stretched across Russia’s 11 time zones amid subfreezing temperatures, would have on the government of President Vladimir Putin, who remains popular and largely without any political rival.

        The Kremlin has engineered constitutional changes that pave the way for him to potentially stay in power until 2036.

      • Data compiled by Maciej Ceglowski (@pinboard) from FEC public records and Twitter.

        On March 31, 2019, Microsoft gave $10,000 (the maximum amount allowed by law) to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who is the key figure preventing DACA legislation from reaching the Senate floor.

      • Colombian party FARC set to change name at its General Assembly

        The FARC party, created after the signing of the Final Peace Agreement in Havana between the Colombian government and the guerrilla of the FARC-EP confirmed that it will change its name to move away from the acronym that identified the most powerful guerrilla in America for more than half a century.

        After signing the Final Peace Agreement in Havana on 24 November 2016 with the then government of Juan Manuel Santos (2010-18), the rebels of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia were transformed into the political party Fuerza Alternativa Revolucionaria del Común, both abbreviated as FARC.

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • After Parler Ban, Rein in Big Tech Now or Cease Being Free Citizens

        The rationale given by all these Big Tech behemoths is that Parler doesn’t do enough to moderate the violent threats its users make on its platform. This is rich, coming from companies that host and circulate Facebook and Twitter, where violent threats proliferate on a daily basis. Twitter has even gone to court, on free speech grounds, to protect the use of its site for organizing protests—even ones where conduct is disorderly.

    • Freedom of Information/Freedom of the Press

      • Watchdog Calls On Turkey To Halt Expulsion Of Iranian Journalist

        Mosaed was sentenced in August by an Iranian court to four years and nine months in prison on charges of “colluding against national security” and “spreading propaganda against the system” after posting a tweet critical of the government’s tackling of the outbreak.

        The CPJ at the time described the ruling as a further attempt by Iranian authorities to try to “suppress the truth.”

    • Civil Rights/Policing

    • Digital Restrictions (DRM)

      • ‘The Muppet Show’ is coming to Disney+

        Disney+ announced on Tuesday that all five seasons of the Jim Henson variety series are coming to the streaming service on February 19.

      • ESPN Plus apologizes for ‘technical issue’ during UFC pay-per-view event [Ed: Digital Restrictions (DRM) at work]

        A spokesperson for Disney, which owns ESPN, said in an email to The Verge on Sunday that the company was “aware that a technical issue prevented a portion of users from accessing the early part of the ESPN+ pay-per-view event, and we apologize for that experience. We worked as quickly as possible to identify and resolve the issue.”

    • Monopolies

      • Local search marketing firm urges compromise over news media code

        Digital marketing solutions provider Localsearch has urged the government and Google to reach a compromise on the proposed news media code, saying it fears that else small businesses could suffer.

      • Incoming health secretary unnerves pharma in-house counsel [Ed: So a lobby site of the litigation 'industry' (sector) is still acting like a shaming machine for "Big Pharma"]

        Senior in-house sources in innovator and generic drug companies reveal to Managing IP that they’re concerned about Xavier Becerra’s pharma antitrust record

      • Germany’s Federal Court of Justice gives weight to celebrity consent to media image use

        Shakespeare’s aphorism that all that glisters is not gold might well be borne in mind by fans and followers of celebrities. In two judgments issued on 21 January 2021 (as yet only available as press release summaries), Germany’s Bundesgerichtshof – or Federal Court of Justice – affirmed the personality and image rights of two celebrity plaintiffs whose images were used without consent.

        The “clickbait” case

        The facts of Case I ZR 120/19 concern an online TV guide, which used images of four popular television presenters, including Günther Jauch, in a Facebook post on 18 August 2015. The page administrator wrote that one of the presenters was to retire because of cancer, with a link to an article which truthfully reported Roger Willemsen’s illness. Mr Jauch had not consented to the use of his image as “clickbait” – a lure to direct traffic from social media to the TV guide’s own site – and sought a ‘cease and desist’ order against the site as well as the payment of an appropriate licence fee of at least €20,000.

        The “holiday lotto” case

        Case I ZR 207/19 was brought by the actor Sascha Hehn, who played a cruise ship captain from 2014 to 2019 in the long-running German soap opera Das Traumschiff (the dream ship). Schemes, conflict and relationship drama are brought to a happy end in far-flung locations and on board the ship. Axel Springer AG’s best-selling Sunday tabloid Bild am Sonntag used his image to advertise a pay-to-enter competition, with the first prize being a “dream trip” on a luxury cruise, in a publication of 18 February 2018.


        While both decisions concern private property rights in the use of one’s own image, the potential availability of the ‘contemporary history’ defence is situated within a similar justification to commentary such as the UK Leveson Report’s characterisation of media freedom of expression as a public right to receive information, rather than an outlet’s right to express it. This means that both men’s career choices do not vitiate their personal property rights in their own images, in keeping with Germany’s privacy-protective legal culture.

      • Amazon Platforms Have Landed on U.S. Government’s “Notorious Markets” List for a Second Year [Ed: This is a lie. USTR is not US government but a front of corporations.]

        For the second year in a row, a number of international Amazon sites have been included on an official U.S. government intellectual property “black list.” Seattle, Washington-headquartered Amazon’s platforms in France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom are name-checked in the annual “Notorious Markets” report, the U.S. Trade Representative (“USTR”) revealed last week, on the heels of a handful of the Jeff Bezos-founded company’s sites being included on the 2019 version of the list, much to the dismay of the $1.56 trillion retail titan.
        After reportedly skirting placement on the USTR’s Review of Notorious Markets for Counterfeiting and Piracy in 2018, Amazon made headlines in early last year when a handful of its international e-commerce arms were cited on the USTR’s 2019 Notorious Markets list. In connection with its inclusion of Amazon’s platforms in Canada, the United Kingdom, Germany, France, and India, the USTR asserted for the first time last year that “submissions by right holders expressed concerns regarding the challenges related to combating counterfeits with respect to e-commerce platforms around the world.”
        No small matter, the inclusion of Amazon sites on the U.S. government’s 2019 list, a first for the e-commerce behemoth, was characterized as a “watershed event” early last year by the Wall Street Journal, largely due to the company’s American heritage. Amazon is the first American company to be targeted on the annual list – one that identifies “prominent and illustrative examples of online and physical markets in which pirated or counterfeit goods and services reportedly are available or that facilitate substantial piracy and counterfeiting” – since it was first published by the USTR in 2006.

      • Around the IP Blogs

        Last week, the US Trade Representative (USTR) Office presented the 2020 Review of Notorious Markets for Counterfeiting and Piracy. The Fashion Law Blog discussed how Amazon has been included on the list for the second year in a row and presented comments from Amazon representatives.

      • [Older] The EU’s attempt to regulate Big Tech: What it brings and what is missing

        This week, the European Commission has proposed two long-awaited pieces of digital legislation, the Digital Services Act and the Digital Markets Act. Despite a number of good provisions, there are also major shortcomings which must be addressed to guarantee the protection of digital rights.


        We like the Commission’s introduction of an unequivocal list of prohibited practices for gatekeepers. It is high time that the law prevents already dominant tech companies such as Apple, Facebook and Google to abuse their virtually unlimited resources and gatekeeper power to crush (or buy out) competitors.

        The prohibition for gatekeepers to self-preference their own offerings (think: Google Search listing Gmail first when you search for email providers), or to re-use people’s personal data in other products (like Facebook copying your WhatsApp address book over to Facebook) are crucial steps to reign in the biggest platforms’ power over us.

        It is disappointing, however, that the list of prohibited conduct is drafted to cater solely to the needs of “business users” while ignoring the rights and needs of ordinary people. That might also explain, why the Commission somewhat included EDRi’s and other experts’ recommendation to open up some of the gatekeepers’ core services to competing firms, but only in very restricted cases. This provision will not enable users from privacy-friendly social networks, for example, to contact their friends on Facebook without having a Facebook account on their own.

      • Overview of Digital Services Act

        The legal regime for online services has been unchanged since the e-Commerce Directive and as such it reflects the technology, services and thinking of more than twenty years ago. The Commission committed to updating these horizontal rules in its Communication, Shaping Europe’s Digital Future (Feb 2020). A number of European Parliament resolutions, while calling for revisions, also emphasised that some core principles from the e-Commerce Directive still remain valid. So the Digital Services Act (DSA), which is proposed as a regulation not a directive, does not repeal the e-Commerce Directive but builds on it, including the internal market principle found in Art 3 e-Commerce Directive. It is therefore envisaged that there be one Member State with regulatory responsibility for a service provider, that is the Member State in which the main establishment of the provider of intermediary services is located (article 40). By contrast with the Audiovisual Media Services Directive (AVMSD), this is a very simple provision. The proposal does however delete the immunity provisions (Arts 12-15 e-Commerce Directive) and replaces them with a new structure which claims to recognise the impact of some very large actors on not only the economy but also European society. Note the e-Commerce Directive allowed Member States to take their own regulatory action within the limits imposed by EU law; it does not seem that this proposal completely harmonises the field either.


        The DSC coordinates the national response and has specific tasks under the regulation (see specifically Art 41). While the DSC is to carry those tasks out in an ‘impartial, transparent and timely manner’ and to ‘act with complete independence’ (Art 39), it does not appear that the DSC needs to be independent in the same was the national supervisory authority is required to be independent in the telecommunications, audiovisual and data protection fields. The Regulation lists the minimum enforcement powers to be granted to the DSC including the power to accept commitments, the power to order cessation of infringements and to adopt interim measures; the power to impose fines. In extreme circumstances it is envisaged that the DSC may “request a competent judicial authority of that Member State to order the temporary restriction of access of recipients of the service concerned by the infringement or, only where that is not technically feasible, to the online interface of the provider of intermediary services on which the infringement takes place” (Art 41(2)(f)). Penalties are not to exceed 6% of the provider’s annual turnover; penalties for failure to comply with information requests are capped at 1%. Users are given the right to comply to the DSC.

        The EDBS is made up of the DSCs, represented by high level officials. In this there seems to be some similarity with existing EU structures (e.g the EDPB under the GDPR). The EBDS may, for example, issue opinions, recommendations or advice and support the development of codes and guidelines as well as supporting joint investigations.

        There are specific provisions relating to the supervision of very large platforms. First of all the relevant national DSC (and the Irish regulator will be clearly one such) will be obliged to “take utmost account of any opinion and recommendation” under the enhanced supervision system set down in Art 50. Further, there is a mechanism whereby the Commission, or the DSCs in destination states may “recommend” the DSC with jurisdiction to investigate a suspected infringement of the DSA. In implementing any decisions, the DSC with jurisdiction must communicate certain information to the EDBS/Commission who may communicate their views when they are of the opinion that any action plan proposed is insufficient. Significantly, the Commission may in some circumstances initiate action in relation to very large platforms. The Commission has power to request information, to interview and to conduct on-site investigations and the Commission may issue interim measures or make commitments binding. The Commission also has the power to adopt a ‘non-compliance decision’ and impose fines. Some of these provisions reflect the approach found in the competition enforcement processes at EU level, including the right of the very large platform to be heard and have access to the file. Again there are questions of overlap in terms of all these powers with the rules pertaining to video sharing platforms and the remit of the AVMSD – which does not have equivalent provisions.

      • Patents

        • IPCom moves global patent litigation role in-house [Ed: JUVE Patent as megaphone (or PR) for nasty, malicious, disgusting patent trolls like IPCom. JUVE is a rogue site now.]
        • UPC: to be or not to be? [Ed: The UPC is pretty much dead already, but law firms cannot let go, they keep mentioning it like it's just a matter of time]

          After BREXIT, ratification and then withdrawal by the UK, a referral to the German Constitutional Court (“Bundesverfassungsgericht“) and finally a ratification by its parliament, the UPC project is once again blocked in Germany, as previously before the Bundesverfassungsgericht. Like the phoenix, the project is constantly reborn. But should we resist, or should we surrender? What think of all this?

          First of all, the ratification process seems endless, so much so that one wonders about a possible outcome in the long run. Some people no longer believe in it. It is true that this is not the first project and that, since the 1975 Luxembourg Convention, the members of the European Patent Organization have been trying, in vain, to establish a common jurisdiction. Meanwhile, the USA have set up the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (“CAFC”) in 1982, which has proved its worth since. So what are we waiting for?

        • Canadian Federal Court considers whether Teva’s COPAXONE second medical use patents were obvious-to-try (Teva v Pharmascience)

          A recent Canadian Federal Court decision (Teva v Pharmascience, 2020 FC 1158) adds yet further nuance to the critical question of when a second-medical use patent application should be filed. One option is to file as soon as the clinical trial gets under way, to avoid the very fact of the clinical trail itself becoming prior art (see IPKat: Untested hypothesis in a clinical trial protocol destroys novelty of a method of treatment claim in Australia (Mylan v Sun Pharma). However, filing a patent too early, in the absence of convincing clinical data from a pivotal trial, runs the risk of an insufficiency attack. Instead, you could wait until the results of a clinical trial are in and argue that the success of the trial was non-obvious. If you are lucky, the trial might even demonstrate an unexpected level of efficacy that would further support inventive step. However, such an approach runs the risk of invalidation on the grounds of obviousness. After all, it may be argued, given the substantial resources were put into a clinical trial, surely there must have been some expectation of success?


          This Canadian case is yet another reminder of how nuanced the factors in decision of when to file a patent application for a second medical use may be. The resulting patent’s validity will depend not only on the facts of the case, but the jurisdiction you happen to be in. A particular lesson one might draw from this Canadian case is the importance of the disease or indication involved, and the perceived likelihood of success of clinical trials in that disease. Following a successful trial, evaluating what the pre-trial expectation of success must necessarily run the risk of using hindsight. Traversing the gap between sufficiency and obviousness is this field is therefore not a trivial under-taking.

        • In re Fulton (Fed. Cir. 2020)

          Last month, the Federal Circuit affirmed the final determination by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office Patent Trial and Appeal Board affirming the Examiner’s rejection of certain claims in U.S. Patent Application No. 12/789,280 as obvious.


          In affirming the Board’s decision, the Federal Circuit determined that substantial evidence supported the Board’s finding that a person of ordinary skill in the art would have modified Woestelandt in view of Zohoungbogbo and Malby to arrive at a baked food product containing psyllium-fiber flour. The panel noted that Woestelandt discloses a bread product made from essentially the same ingredients as the claimed invention, including egg as a binder and water source, with the exception that Woestelandt uses wheat flour instead of a low-carbohydrate, psyllium-fiber flour, and that Zohoungbogbo discloses a baking flour composed of 35–50% plant fibers and less than 5% carbohydrates that is a desirable substitute for wheat flour to prepare low-carbohydrate dietetic baked goods. The panel determined that “[t]hese teachings support the Board’s determination that a skilled artisan would have found it obvious to substitute the wheat flour in Woestelandt with the plant-based flour in Zohoungbogbo in preparing a low-carbohydrate dietetic baked product.” The panel also noted that Malby’s teachings regarding the beneficial properties of psyllium support the Board’s finding that a skilled artisan would have substituted the plant fiber in the Woestelandt-Zohoungbogbo baked product with psyllium plant fiber for the reasons suggested in Malby.

          The Federal Circuit disagreed with the Appellant’s argument that Zohoungbogbo does not teach or suggest a gluten-free flour, finding that Zohoungbogbo discloses the use of rice germ as one source of protein other than wheat gluten. The Federal Circuit also disagreed with the Appellant’s argument that Woestelandt and Malby teach incompatible baking techniques, finding that the Appellant failed to cite anything in the record that undermined the Board’s factual findings that the benefits taught by Malby would apply in the asserted combination. Having found the Appellant’s arguments to be unpersuasive, the Federal Circuit affirmed the decision of the Board.

        • An occasion to seize! [Ed: INPI is extremely corrupt]

          As winter sales have just started in France, it is an ideal moment to mention an occasion to seize in Patent Law: the important judgment regarding the saisie-contrefaçon rendered by the Paris Court of Appeal on November 6, 2020 in the Manitou case.

          The Manitou case is well known to followers of French case law: it has already led to no less than three decisions, including one from the Supreme Court (“Cour de cassation”). In this instance, company JCB realized a saisie-contrefaçon based on two patents (EP 1,532,065 and EP 2,263,965) at Manitou’s premises. Manitou asked the judge to withdraw his ex-parte interim order to seize, which he refused to do. The Court of Appeal did not share the same opinion, considering that the participation in the seizure of a patent attorney who had previously prepared a private report for the benefit of the patentee violated the principle of impartiality of Article 6 of the ECHR. However, the Court of Cassation reversed this decision: the report established by the patent attorney at the initiative of a party did not constitute an expertise within the meaning of articles 232 and seq. of the French Code of Civil Procedure, as a consequence, it did not prevent his subsequent participation in the seizure, because in this context his mission was not submitted to the duty of impartiality (see here).

          Thus, in the judgment of 6 November 2020, the Paris Court of Appeal ruled for the second time in this case, but after the intervention of the Supreme Court[1]. Unsurprisingly, the Judges took up the conclusion of the Supreme Court by applying it to the case in question: in this case, the patent attorney had not been appointed as a judicial expert but had only drawn up a report at the initiative of the person requesting the ex-parte order. The Court further adds that the profession of industrial property attorney is a regulated independent profession submitted to ethical rules, in order to infer that the impartiality of the industrial property attorney must be presumed until proven otherwise because of the statutory independence of this profession.


          In any event, the now widespread mania of litigants to invoke human rights, via Article 6 of the ECHR, still has a bright future ahead of it in France, particularly with the recent introduction of opposition proceedings to French patents in which the Director of the INPI will be both judge of the opposition and party to the possible appeal before the Court of Appeal.

        • Does the examiner need to provide a copy of the reference for it to be “on the record” before the PTAB?

          The new petition for certiorari in Samaranayake v. Iancu (Supreme Court 2021) has little chance of being granted, but it does offer some insight on USPTO procedure. I mentioned 35 U.S.C. § 144 in a prior post this week. This case also focuses on Section 144 and asks whether the Federal Circuit exceeded its statutory jurisdiction by creating its own record rather than relying solely on the record before the USPTO.

        • De-Coding Indian Intellectual Property Law

          The subject matter in this case was an antidepressant with patent titled “Pharmaceutical Composition Comprising Phenyl Piperazine Derivatives as Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors” (IN 227963) and was granted protection on 27/01/2009. The drug’s international nonproprietary name (INN) is Vortioxetine. The Petitioner (H Lundbeck A/S) alleged that the Respondent (Hetero Drugs Ltd.) imported the API Vortioxetine thrice in 2016 and subsequently exported substantial quantities of Vortioxetine Hydrobromide to other countries (notably Canada and a few other Latin American countries). It further alleged that Defendant no. 2 (presumably a local contracted manufacturer? Strangely nowhere in the order is the identity of this party revealed!) sought environmental clearance to expand the Respondents’ manufacturing capacity of Vortioxetine Hydrobromide. The Respondents refuted the allegations and claimed that they aren’t using the product in India, rather are exporting it for the purposes of research and development.

          The court rejected the defense of the Respondents, holding that the Respondents did not provide any evidence to prove that the substantial portion of the Respondents’ export was utilised in research and development. (Side note: The trend of courts not substantiating on how plaintiffs have fulfilled the three-factor test required for an interim injunction continues in this case). Now, moving on to the questions around ‘export’.

          Precedents on Interpretations

          The court in the present case did not clarify the rationale behind establishing why export of a good shall be considered as “usage in India”. In common parlance, the term ‘export’ is associated with selling, or transporting for the purposes of selling, of a product from one country to another country. Therefore to regard it as a “use” of the product within the selling country stands in contradiction with the “extraterritorial” nature of the word itself. Let’s look at what precedents have said on how to interpret words used commonly through the legislation: The Delhi High Court in Bayer v. Union of India decision, relied on Polestar Electronic (Pvt.) Ltd. v Additional Commissioner, Sales Tax and Anr., Central Bank of India v State of Kerala and Ors. and Central Bank of India v Ravindra & Ors. to reflect the “two clear strands of reasoning … while interpreting the meaning and purport of general words. One, that plain and natural meaning should be preferred ordinarily, and two, that the context and purpose of the provision should always be kept in mind.” Though, the court in this case held export to mean “selling”, it justified its stance after comparing the use and intended meaning accorded to the common term “export” under different provisions of the Act. In the present case, no such explanation was given by the court for ruling that “export” shall fall within the meaning of “use in India”, which is in contradiction of the general understanding of the word “export” in the first place.

        • F-star Granted Composition of Matter Patent for FS118, a Bispecific Antibody Targeting LAG-3 and PD-L1

          F-star Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ: FSTX), a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company dedicated to developing next generation immunotherapies to transform the lives of patients with cancer, today announces the European Patent Office (EPO) has granted a patent with claims protecting the composition of matter of F-star’s FS118 molecule throughout Europe. The expiry date of the patent, not including any potential extensions to the standard 20-year term of protection, is expected to be June 2037.

          According to the EPO’s decision, grant of European Patent number 3472207 will take effect on January 20, 2021. The decision to grant this patent follows the EPO’s December 10, 2020 notice of intent to issue the patent, which was not challenged by any third party.

        • The Selection Invention Paradox at the EPO – Direct and unambiguous disclosure under Art 54 and 123(2) EPC [Ed: Patent law firms. Pushing Microsoft Word documents as 'articles'.]
        • Cannabis: Patents in Europe [Ed: Patent litigation firm Kilburn & Strode LLP pushing for yet more ridiculous patents on life and nature itself]

          Patents are a powerful tool in Europe to protect inventions in the rapidly-growing field of cannabis-derived therapeutics.

          Commercialisation and uptake of natural cannabis-based products is increasing, particularly in the medical field. Breakthroughs in research are yielding effective cannabis-based therapies for a variety of medical indications. Sativex/Nabiximols is approved for the treatment of spasticity. Epidiolex is approved for the treatment of seizures in rare and severe forms of childhood epilepsy. Cannabis is touted as a wonder-drug by many. Its effects on the human body are numerous and these approved therapies are the tip of the iceberg – more will surely follow.

          Cannabis products typically comprise a class of compounds known as cannabinoids, which are often derived directly from the natural cannabis plant. The human body also produces its own similar compounds in the endocannabinoid system. At least 140 different cannabinoids are known to exist naturally, but the most widely researched cannabinoids for medicinal use are ∆9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD).

          It is well known that research is costly, particularly in the field of medicine. The patent system supports this research by granting a monopoly to patent proprietors. This enables patentees to recoup the investment required. However, patenting cannabis and other naturally-occurring substances can present a challenge, since significant legal roadblocks exist in some territories.

        • NLS Pharmaceutics Ltd. Announces Notice of Allowance of a New Technology Patent Covering Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder & Narcolepsy

          STANS, Switzerland, Jan. 21, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — NLS Pharmaceutics Ltd. (NLS), a Swiss biotech firm focusing on the development of novel treatments of rare neurological diseases including narcolepsy, idiopathic hypersomnia and Kleine-Levin Syndrome and of neurodevelopmental disorders, such as Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), announced today that the European Patent Office (EPO) issued a Notice of Intention to Grant NLS’s patent application covering a novel formulation of mazindol for treatment of ADHD and sleep related disorders. On November 23, 2020, the Canadian Intellectual Property Office (CIPO) issued a similar notice of allowance for the counterpart Canadian application. NLS awaits the impending grant of the European and Canadian patents.

        • BonelliErede hires former president of Milan’s appeals court [Ed: They cannot spell out UPC correctly ("unitary patent courts"). Do they have a clue what they talk about?]

          Tavassi is currently president of the Association of European Competition Law Judges and vice president of the Intellectual Property Judges Association. She is also a member of the panel of experts responsible for drafting rules for Europe’s unitary patent courts, and until last year was a national judge on the Enlarged Board of Appeal of the Munich-based European Patent Office. On top of that, she is also a professor of industrial law at the University of Pavia.

        • Patents in the UK post Brexit [Ed: This spreads misinformation about the UPC and cannot even spell it out right, “Unified Patents [sic] Court” (UPC)]

          The UK has now formally withdrawn from the proposed European Union UPC project, which aims to introduce a more streamlined and cost-effective framework for patent litigation in the EU. Despite recent constitutional challenges in Germany, there is still significant support for pushing ahead with the project in the EU27. All patent owners with patents in the EU27 and relevant licensees should therefore keep a watching brief in order to be ready to participate in the expected sunrise period if the court goes ahead

        • Software Patents

          • Webinars on IP Law and Strategy for AI in Europe [Ed: Promotion of the HEY HI ("AI") loophole for software patents where these are clearly not legal]

            Gowling WLG will be offering a three-part US Tech Webinar Series. The third webinar in that series, which is entitled “IP Law and Strategy for AI — A European Perspective,” will be offered from 2:00 pm to 3:00 pm ET on January 28, 2021. Matt Hervey and Neil Hendron of Gowling WLG (London) will talk about IP law and strategy for AI in the context of evolving commercial, technical, legal, and regulatory environments.

          • European Union: Patenting AI In The EPO Guidelines [Ed: Providing yet more proof that they “HEY HI” (AI) hype is a Trojan horse for illegal software patents in Europe]

            In this episode of the Best Practice podcast, Bastian walks you through the section on AI and machine learning in the EPO’s patent examination guidelines. He makes the point that they are too restrictive when it comes to patenting AI innovations.

            At the end of the episode, Bastian shares some of his best tips for how to draft AI patent applications so that they fulfill what’s in the guidelines.

          • The European Patent Office has granted SSH Communications Security Corporation a further patent for PrivX® technology

            The European Patent Office (EPO) has granted SSH patent number EP 3495976 on the use of virtual smart cards in temporary certificate-based passwordless access such as the SSH PrivX technology.

            Passwords are a hassle to use, and they present significant security risks for users and organizations of all sizes, with an average of one in every 250 corporate accounts compromised each month. The World Economic Forum (WEF) estimates that cybercrime costs the global economy $2.9 million every minute, with roughly 80 percent of those attacks directed at passwords. Furthermore, password management is very costly: according to the analyst firm Gartner, up to 20 to 50 percent of all help desk calls are for password resets.

          • Is the cost of AI a barrier to IP offices?

            [Ed: Truly laughable "HEY HI" (AI) piece, pushing a bunch of nonsense for patent maximalist agenda at the EPO. And "head of data science at the European Patent Office (EPO)" is a lousy buzzword as job title.]]

            Artificial intelligence (AI) can significantly improve the day-to-day operations of an IP office, but policymakers need to invest now to secure its full potential, said leading data experts this week.

            Speaking at a panel hosted by WIPR Patents Live, Alexander Klenner-Bajaja, head of data science at the European Patent Office (EPO), said better transparency was key to the success of AI: “There is a lot of mistrust, you always hear this ‘black box’ thing about AI. I argue we need to make the human capable of following the reasoning of the machine.”

            “You don’t need to be a fully trained engineer to understand what’s going on. [In the case of patent classification], you can easily calculate which terms contributed most to a machine’s decision and you can visualise it,” Klenner-Bajaja said.

            “I would like to make all of that very transparent. Then we can say that the AI has been trained by a human expert and we can show exactly how it came to its decision.”

      • Trademarks

        • Chile and the Madrid Protocol: are we close yet?

          In December 2020, the draft Agreement to approve the Madrid Protocol was entered into the first Chilean Constitutional procedure. The discussion of the draft began on December 15, 2020 at the Foreign Relations Committee of the Chamber of Deputies.

          The bill (Bulletin 13,929) relates to the international registration of marks. During the discussion, the subsecretary of International Economic Relations; the subsecretary of Economy; and INAPI’s director, explained the benefits and scope of the draft. The Ministry of the Economy and the National Institute of Industrial Property (INAPI), are seeking to promote national trade marks in the international market.

        • General Court affirms minimal distinctiveness requirement in Oatly’s trade mark appeal

          The General Court turned to defining the relevant public at hand. At first instance, it had consisted of the public in the EU Member States with English as an official language, Ireland and Malta, who could be characterised as displaying an average level of attention when selecting their preferred products. Oatly did not dispute their inclusion, but sought to add those consumers who are ‘deemed’ English-speaking, in Denmark, the Netherlands, Finland and Sweden, thanks to their high level of English ability. The General Court accepted this submission, agreeing to take evidence of their perception of the mark into account.

          So, how might the EU Anglosphere perceive IT’S LIKE MILK BUT MADE FOR HUMANS? EUIPO submitted that the Board of Appeal had seen the words as a promotional slogan of particular appeal to vegans and those with a lactose intolerance or milk allergy, but that the perception of the general public (of which these consumers made up a non-negligible part) had nonetheless been taken into account.

          On their reading, the average consumer of the relevant goods would be aware of the animal milk consumption debate and milk’s biological function of feeding baby animals. To them, the slogan would simply tell them of the relevant goods’ similarity to animal milk and consequent (better) suitability for human consumption – that is, a promotional message only.

          Oatly countered with a characterisation of the relevant public as made up of the average consumer, without ‘extreme or minority opinions’ (apologies to vegan Kat readers), who buys everyday consumer goods. To this consumer, the slogan might challenge their preconceptions of milk – as a substance essentially produced for humans – and be tied to Oatly products. It buttressed this argument by pointing to a Swedish judgment as well as British and Dutch press reactions to the advertising campaign launch.


          With this judgment, the General Court confirms that the distinctiveness test is essentially about whether a cognitive process is sparked in the average consumer’s mind, by which she can consistently identify goods marked with the same sign as having a common commercial origin. The dispute between the parties about whether the mark is “original, imaginative, paradoxical, surprising, thought provoking and unexpected” was, as a result, not ultimately of huge consequence.

          This limited view means that considerations of whether a mark will successfully do everything in the marketplace that a firm’s advertising department might like should not come into the registration process. In so doing, it seemed to sidestep the debate about whether these other functions are discrete or derivative from the origin function, perhaps leaning towards the former in its emphasis on non-origin functions also being fulfilled without the suggestion that they are subsidiary.

      • Copyrights

        • Book review: Drafting Copyright Exceptions

          Hudson, Reader at King’s College London, introduces her book by stating that we need a new paradigm through which to view the operation and drafting of copyright exceptions. And just before the reader might begin to think this is another book analysing the justifications and role of copyright exceptions, Hudson quickly departs by saying that the majority of the literature takes a top-down or ‘law in books’ approach, whereas this research considers the ‘law in action’, which uses an understanding of the practices of non-legal actors; the creators, copyright owners and users.

          To illustrate, the case of CCH Canadian Ltd v Law Society of Upper Canada [2004] 1 SCR 339 saw the Supreme Court of Canada hand down a judgement that received favourable academic commentary, declaring it a landmark case with far-reaching effects regarding the conceptualisation of exceptions. However, Hudson details in chapters 7 and 8, the reception of the case within Canadian cultural institutions, using not only publicly available information but also empirical research including interviews with institution staff and representatives of peak bodies. A compelling and concerning argument is presented, that in the five years following the judgement, a significant gap emerged between the academic interpretation of the case and the muted response within the institutions. Awareness of the case itself was mixed and few changes to procedures were made.

          Whilst reading, this Kat recalls times that she has worked with companies, publishers and organisations in the UK, that also reflect the same experience, after the UK updated its copyright exceptions in 2014. Whilst this is an anecdotal experience, Hudson demonstrates the issue to be a very real concern.

          Delving deeper, the book explores what the law in action means for the drafting of copyright exceptions. In particular, chapter 2 makes predictions for when a legal command is better drafted, highlighting the crucial role that empirical analysis has in helping to determine better drafting.


          Whist Hudson’s research supports the implementation of fair use in other jurisdictions, she is careful to note that “standards are not inevitably superior to rules, nor is fair use the end point of a mature legal system.”

        • Pirate Streamers Save UFC 257 After ESPN+ Collapses Under The Load

          The lead up to last night’s UFC 257 Poirier v McGregor was notable for the UFC’s threats to target an illegal streamer, warning that his house was being watched, his phone was tapped, and police were standing by. While that guy reportedly backed down, many others didn’t – which is fortunate since ESPN+ went down under the load, forcing legitimate buyers (including UFC fighters) to request pirate streams.

        • 130 Billion Pirate Site Visits in 2020: It’s Marketing Treasure

          Last year there were over 130 billion visits to pirate sites worldwide, with the United States as the number one traffic source. New data from piracy tracking company MUSO further shows that streaming piracy remains dominant. While piracy is often framed as a threat, MUSO also uses its data to help copyright holders market their content to this untapped audience.


Links 24/1/2021: Nouveau X.Org Driver Release and GhostBSD 21.01.20

Posted in News Roundup at 1:31 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Audiocasts/Shows

    • Kernel Space

      • Linux 5.10.10
        I'm announcing the release of the 5.10.10 kernel.
        All users of the 5.10 kernel series must upgrade.
        The updated 5.10.y git tree can be found at:
        	git://git.kernel.org/pub/scm/linux/kernel/git/stable/linux-stable.git linux-5.10.y
        and can be browsed at the normal kernel.org git web browser:
        greg k-h
      • Linux 5.4.92
      • Linux 4.19.170
      • Linux 4.14.217
      • Linux 4.9.253
      • Linux 4.4.253
      • You can presently operate Linux on Apple M1 machines

        The Creators from security startup, Corellium have disclosed that they governed to bring Linux operating on Apple’s Arm founded M1 appliances natively.

        As Linux, and Windows, were already available on Apple Silicon owing to virtualization, this is the very initial example of those non macOS operating systems (O.S) operating on the hardware.

        The CTO of Corellium, Chris Wade stated earlier on Twitter that Linux is presently entirely available on the Mac mini M1. Booting it from USB an entire Ubuntu desktop computer (rpi), whereas trading the images of Ubuntu’s Raspberry Pi ARMv8 desktop computer picture booting on Apple M1 machine.

      • Apple M1 Macs can now run the full version of Linux [Ed: Maybe plagiarist site]

        A new Linux port allows Apple’s Mac M1s to run Ubuntu for the first time. Corellium, a security company that provides a virtualized version of iOS for security testing, has successfully ported Ubuntu to the M1 Macs and posted a tutorial for others to follow. The modified version of Ubuntu boots into the normal user interface and includes USB support.

        The Corellium team have detailed how they got Ubuntu to work, and it’s a good in-depth article if you’re interested in the details. Although some M1 components are shared with Apple’s mobile chips, non-standard chips have made it difficult to create Linux drivers to make Ubuntu work properly.

        Apple didn’t design its M1 Macs with dual boot or Boot Camp in mind. Craig Federighi, senior vice president of software engineering at Apple, previously ruled out official support for startup alternative operating systems such as Windows or Linux. Virtualization seems to be Apple’s preferred method, but that hasn’t stopped people from creating their own ports.

      • Ubuntu Linux is currently operating on M1 Macs

        For the first time, clients of Apple Silicon Macs utilizing Apple’s M1 chip, for example, the entry-level 13-inch MacBook Pro, Mac mini, and MacBook Air—would now be able to boot in to and natively run Linux.

        The vintage at play here is Ubuntu, and the port was created by Corellium, which in any case virtualizes iOS and other ARM-based OSes to empower simpler security testing. It’s important also that Apple has recently sued the organization over said iOS security testing tool. The lawsuit didn’t turn out well for Apple.

        Corellium Chief Technology Office Chris Wade declared the culmination of the cooperation on Twitter yesterday. What’s more, in a blog post on Corellium’s site, the group behind the port writes that it was created in corresponding with the group’s efforts at “creating a model of the [M1] for our security research part.”

      • Linux 5.12 To Allow Voltage/Temperature Reporting On Some ASRock Motherboards – Phoronix

        Voltage, temperature, and fan speed reporting among desktop motherboards under Linux remains one of the unfortunate areas even in 2021… Many SIO ICs remain publicly undocumented and the Linux driver support is often left up to the community and usually through reverse-engineering. Thus the mainline Linux kernel support is left to suffer especially among newer desktop motherboards.

      • [Older] F2FS With Linux 5.12 To Allow Configuring Compression Level

        While the Flash-Friendly File-System (F2FS) allows selecting between your choice of optional compression algorithms like LZO, LZ4, and Zstd — plus even specifying specific file extensions to optionally limit the transparent file-system compression to — it doesn’t allow easily specifying a compression level. That is fortunately set to change with the Linux 5.12 kernel this spring.

        Queued now into the F2FS “dev” tree ahead of the Linux 5.12 merge window is a patch that’s been floating around for some weeks to allow easily configuring the compression level. The compress_algorithm mount option is expanded to allow also specifying a level, such that the format supported is [algorithm]:[level] should you want to override any level preference like with the LZ4 and Zstd compression algorithms.

      • Graphics Stack

        • Nouveau X.Org Driver Sees First Release In Two Years

          Two years and nine patches later, xf86-video-nouveau 1.0.17 is out as the latest X.Org driver update for this open-source NVIDIA driver component.

          Like the other DDX drivers with the exception of the generic xf86-video-modesetting driver that is quite common now to those still running on X.Org with the open-source stack, xf86-video-nouveau seldom sees new activity. Since the prior v1.0.16 release two years ago there has been less than a dozen patches for it. The interesting activity happens in DRM/KMS kernel space and an increasing number of users are just relying upon xf86-video-modesetting over these hardware-specific X.Org user-space drivers.

    • Applications

      • Best mathematics packages for Linux in 2021

        Why would you want to do mathematics on Linux? Isn’t mathematics over when you leave school? No! Maths is fun. You may also have forgotten much of what you should have learned in school.

        With the packages in this roundup we’ll show which you should choose for what purpose.

        While you can use all the packages here for learning, there are two in particular that are much better at teaching, rather than giving you results for some project. You will see that you can even control a drone with the help of mathematics.

      • Essential Utilities: Flash OS Images

        Linux offers a gamut of open source small utilities that perform functions ranging from the mundane to the wonderful. In our eyes, it’s the breadth of these tools that help to make Linux a compelling operating system.

        For beginners to Linux the range of distributions can be daunting. Should I investigate Ubuntu, Arch Linux, openSUSE, elementaryOS, or even try Solus? A good way to experiment with Linux distributions and find the one that best fits your needs is to create a bootable SD card or USB drive flashed with the Linux distros. The tools featured in this article make this process simple and safe. They are all easy to use with a simple interface, and hard drive friendly.

      • Openstack RDO && KVM Hypervisor: Setting up Connection pooling on TomCat 9.041 Java Web Server

        Overall application file layout . This Howto follows only official guidelines and might be a bit more straight forward then original . That is a way I was able to get JNDI up and running on 9.0.41 release .

      • Sylvain Beucler: Android Emulator Rebuild

        Android Rebuilds provides freely-licensed builds of Android development tools from a Mountain View-based company.

        The Emulator package moved to a separate component and build system.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • GNU Linux – how to mount single disk failed RAID1
      • How to create a Linux EC2 instance step by step on Amazon AWS

        Amazon EC2 (Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud) is a part of AWS product offerings, where users can rent virtual servers in the AWS public cloud. You pay for rented compute resources (CPU, memory, hard drive) at per-second granularity on a “pay-as-you-go” basis. For those of you who have just started with Amazon EC2, this tutorial covers a step-by-step procedure to create a Linux instance on AWS EC2 platform.

      • What’s with cp –reflink: failed to clone: Invalid argument?

        Most modern copy-on-write file systems, such as Btrfs and XFS, support file cloning. (OpenZFS being the notable exception.) However, the tools that support this space-saving innovation can be difficult to use. Here’s an example situation detailing how the simple copy (cp) command on Linux can make it hard to understand what’s going on.

        As an example, here’s a quick command set that will create a file and a directory, disable copy-on-write on the directory, and then attempt to clone the file into the directory. It uses commands from gnu-coreutils and e2fsprogs packages, and assumes you’re working on a file cloning-capable file system.

      • Set Up SSH Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) on CentOS/RHEL Server

        This tutorial will show you how to set up SSH two-factor authentication on CentOS/RHEL server using the well-known Google Authenticator. It will greatly improve the security of SSH service on your CentOS/RHEL server.

      • How to Install PHP 8.0 & PECL Extensions in Ubuntu 20.04, 18.04, 16.04 | UbuntuHandbook

        Want to install PHP 8.0 as well as many PECL extensions in your Ubuntu Server? Well there’s a well trusted PPA that contains the packages for all current Ubuntu releases.

        Ondřej Surý, a Debian Developer who maintains the official PHP packages in Debian, is maintaining an Ubuntu PPA that contains the latest PHP 5.6, PHP 7.0, PHP 7.1, PHP 7.2, PHP 7.3, PHP 7.4, and PHP 8.0 packages as well as PECL extensions for all current Ubuntu releases.

      • Install and Configure Prometheus Monitoring on Kubernetes

        We are going to deploy Prometheus to monitor Kubernetes nodes and more.

      • Command to install Vmware tools on Ubuntu using terminal

        Vmware workstation Player is one of the best available virtualization platforms to run various Linux, Android, and Windows virtual machines. However, to adapt the host display and increase the performance of installed guest os or VMs it needs a set of tools called VMware Tools to install on Linux, Windows, and other supported OS.

        VMware tools let us enable guests to host or vice versa content copy-paste (clipboard), drag and drop facility to transfer folders and files, and let the guest os to adapt the resolution of the host display.

        Although we can install VMware Tools using the graphical options of VMware workstation player, however, on Linux this becomes a lot easier and straightforward with the help of a command-line terminal.

    • Games

      • Gaming Like It’s 1925: Last Week To Join The Public Domain Game Jam!

        Sign up for the Public Domain Game Jam on itch.io »

      • ujoy(4) added to -current

        With the following commit, Thomas Frohwein (thfr@) added a joystick/gamecontroller driver to -current: [...]

      • The First Online Conference Is Happening Today For The Godot Game Engine – Phoronix

        For those interested in Godot as the premiere open-source 2D/3D game engine or just looking for some interesting technical talks to enjoy this weekend, the first GodotCon Online is today.

        GodotCon 2021 is the open-source game engine’s first entirely online conference for developers, users, and other contributors to this promising open-source project. The YouTube-based event has been running from 8:45 UTC today until 16:00 UTC, but fear not if you missed out as you can already go back and listen to the prior talks in the stream. The recordings will remain available for those wanting to enjoy it in the days ahead. All of the content is free of charge.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • KDE Saw Many Fixes + Improvements On Top Of Shipping Plasma 5.21 Beta

          In addition to shipping the Plasma 5.21 beta this week, KDE developers were very active in not only working out fixes for next month’s Plasma 5.21 desktop but also other improvements to KDE applications.

        • KDE Plasma 5.21 Beta Launched – Checkout Features & UI Improvements

          The KDE Team has released KDE Plasma 5.2.1 Beta version for testing, and it looks awesome. Plasma 5.21 will absolutely fine but kindly understand that this very release is a beta release & will have bugs in it. Yet lots of Design improvements, themes and bug fixes are done in this beta version.


          There is also a new dark theme which is actually a mix of dark & light theme. This Breeze Twilight theme will be available from the global theme settings.

          System Setting with more Accessibility & features

          Settings will have a separate page for Firewall and Get a graphical view to set your firewall rules using UFW & Firewalld. It is easier to navigate in Settings menu because of the updated UI.

        • KDE Goals – a year lost, a year gained

          The year 2020 was difficult in many ways, but it also was important for me: I joined KDE e.V. as a consultant in the role of Project Coordinator.

          One of the main focuses of mine was supporting the KDE Goals initiative, which resulted in creating a formalized process.

          As you might know (or read in the process), the KDE Goals are to be replaced roughly every two years.

          This timebox was selected to balance keeping the Goals fresh, and letting the Goal Champions have enough time to work on the topics with the community.

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • The State of GNOME 40′s Threaded Input

          One of many improvements we have been looking forward to with GNOME 40 is Mutter now having a separate input thread with its native back-end for Wayland.

          That allows more of the input work to happen in a separate CPU thread. The code was merged back in November and has seen improvements ahead of the GNOME 40 debut in March. This week on the GNOME Shell and Mutter blog was a post looking at the current state of this work.

        • The 10 Best GNOME Based Linux Distributions To Check Out in 2021

          If you have ever used Linux, then there is no chance that you didn’t hear about GNOME. GNOME is one of the best user-friendly and open source desktop environments based on Linux. It started its journey in 1997 by Miguel de Icaza and Federico Mena. But it is still popular among Linux lovers for its features. As a result, a bunch of distributions uses GNOME as their default desktop environment. Among them, Fedora, Ubuntu, Arch Linux are known as the best GNOME based Linux distribution. Moreover, this magnificent desktop environment comes with many features. For instance, a better web experience, GNOME map, application grid, and many more.

        • GNOME 40′s Mutter Adds Atomic Mode-Setting Support

          Adding to the list of big ticket changes for GNOME 40 is Mutter now supporting atomic mode-setting.

          The popular mainline DRM/KMS drivers for years have generally supported atomic mode-setting while finally with Mutter 40 the bits are coming into place for GNOME. Atomic mode-setting is much cleaner than the older legacy mode-setting path, principally allows for testing of modes prior to applying, can reduce flickering in some instances, and also tends to be faster.

    • Distributions

      • MX Linux is Now Available for Raspberry Pi [Download and Install Guide]

        The lightweight and popular Linux distribution – MX Linux extended its reach. And MX Linux is now available for Raspberry Pi devices as a Beta image (Fluxbox-RaspberryPi Respin “Ragout” ) which you can try out on your devices right now. Here’s how.

      • Good News! You Can Start Using MX Linux on Raspberry Pi [In Beta]

        Popular Debian-based MX Linux could soon be installed on Raspberry Pi. The beta version of this community edition is available now.

      • 7 Linux Distros to Look Forward in 2021

        Here is a list of most anticipated Linux distributions you should keep an eye on in the year 2021.

      • Reviews

        • Easy OS 2.4.1 review

          Puppy Linux is a veteran distro. Well actually, it isn’t so much a distro these days as a treatment that you can give to existing Linux distros.

          Anyway, whatever it is, it was originally created back in 2003 by Barry Kauler with the goals of being lightweight yet complete. It’s under new stewardship now, but still holds true to those ideals.

          EasyOS has, for the last three years, been Kauler’s pet project in which he takes Puppy Linux and introduces his own take on containers. We’re going to look at the recently released version based on Debian Buster.

      • BSD

        • GhostBSD 21.01.20 release note

          This new release is to fix a bug found in the installer related to the hostname not behind set up properly on the new system installation. I am sorry if some of you had a problem cause I the missing hostname.


          Recommended system requirements for the new iso

          - 64-bit processor
          - 4GB+ of RAM
          - 15 GB of free hard drive space
          - Network card

        • Routing and Firewalling VLANS with FreeBSD

          When first experimenting, it is important to start with something simple. It can sometimes be far too easy to model very complex setups and then have to spend a lot of time debugging to understand what is not configured correctly.

          These example networks offer both an introduction on how to set up VNET jails with VLANs and show some of the power of their use. A production network built from this would want to give each jail its own file system, this step was skipped to make it easier to follow along.

          The BSD Router project has an example VLAN and VNET multi-tennant set up on their website that includes multiple different virtual machine frameworks. This example is well worth study and this article has hopefully provided the background to help you understand how this network is set up.

        • [Old] FreeBSD On A Raspberry Pi 4 With 4GB Of RAM

          This is the story of how I managed to get FreeBSD running on a Raspberry Pi 4 with 4GB of RAM, though I think the setup story is pretty similar for those with 2GB and 8GB.1

          I also managed to get Rust built from source, (kind of) which is nice because the default Rust installer doesn’t seem to work for FreeBSD running on a Raspberry Pi.

          If there’s anything awry with these steps, please contact me so I can fix it.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • The Surprising Power of Business Experimentation

          We’ve long associated innovation breakthroughs with science and technology coming out of R&D labs, e.g., the transistor, penicillin, DNA sequencing, TCP/IP protocols, and so on. Such major lab-based breakthroughs are at one end of the innovation spectrum. At the other end are market-facing innovations, whose purpose is to create appealing and intuitive user experiences, new business models, and compelling market-based strategies.

          Lab-based innovations were generally born when scientists, mathematicians or engineers developed new theories, technologies, algorithms or programs in an R&D lab. Over time, often years, the innovations found their way to the marketplace. Since technology and markets advanced at a relatively slow pace, there was little pressure to reduce the transition times from lab to market. This was the prevailing innovation model through most of the 20th century.

          It all started to change in the 1980s as the rate and pace of technology advances significantly accelerated. The hand-offs and elapsed times to take an innovation from lab to market were no longer competitive, especially with products based on fast changing digital technologies. Start-up companies significantly shortened the time-to-market for new products and services, putting huge pressure on companies still operating under the old rules.

          These competitive pressures, were further exacerbated by the explosive growth of the Internet in the 1990s, as I personally learned when becoming general manager of the newly established IBM Internet Division in December of 1995. A lot was starting to happen around the Internet, but it was not clear where things were heading, and in particular what the implications would be to the world of business. With the Internet, there was no one technology or product you could work on in the labs that would make you a success in the marketplace. This time around, the strategy itself had to come from the marketplace, not the labs.

    • Devices/Embedded

  • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

    • Web Browsers

      • Mozilla

        • SeaMonkey on Pi4 no longer freezes

          Ans now SM is behaving nicely, no appreciable freezing. I am testing version 2.6.1, and playing around on youtube.com do get a segmentation fault sometimes. I can live with that, better than freezing. Running SM

          One other thing: The SM cache is in /root/.mozilla, not happy with this, as always trying to reduce writes to the drive. So have changed it to /tmp. SM creates a folder named /tmp/Cache2. In EasyOS, /tmp is a tmpfs, in RAM. The downside of this is the cache will be lost at shutdown. Probably an upside is a possible security benefit.

        • Cameron Kaiser: TenFourFox FPR30 SPR1 available

          With the Quad G5 now back in working order after the Floodgap Power Supply Kablooey of 2020, TenFourFox Feature Parity Release “30.1″ (SPR 1) is now available for testing (downloads, hashes, release notes).

    • Programming/Development

      • How to test PHP code using PHPUnit – Anto ./ Online

        PHPUnit automatically executable tests that verify your application’s behavior. Thus – you can ensure that your changes don’t break existing functionality. This post will show you how to test your PHP code using PHPUnit.

      • Latency Numbers Every Team Should Know

        We design systems around the size of delays that are expected. You may have seen the popular table “latency numbers every programmer should know” which lists some delays that are significant in technology systems we build.

        Teams are systems too. Delays in operations that teams need to perform regularly are significant to their effectiveness. We should know what they are.

        Ssh to a server on the other side of the world and you will feel frustration; delay in the feedback loop from keypress to that character displayed on the screen.

        Here’s some important feedback loops for a team, with feasible delays. I’d consider these delays tolerable by a team doing their best work (in contexts I’ve worked in). Some teams can do better, lots do worse.


        In recent times you may have experienced the challenge of having conversations over video links with significant delays. This is even harder when the delay is variable. It’s hard to avoid talking over each other.

        Similarly, it’s pretty bad if we know it’s going to take all day to deploy a change to production. But it’s so worse if we think we can do it in 10 minutes, when it actually ends up taking all day. Flaky deployment checks, environment problems, change conflicts create unpredictable delays.

        It’s hard to get anything done when we don’t know what to expect. Like trying to hold a video conversation with someone on a train that’s passing through the occasional tunnel.

      • How I programmed a virtual gift exchange

        Every year, my wife’s book club has a book exchange during the holidays. Due to the need to maintain physical distance in 2020, I created an online gift exchange for them to use during a book club videoconference. Apparently, the virtual book exchange worked out (at least, I received kind compliments from the book club members), so I decided to share this simple little hack.

      • Dirk Eddelbuettel: prrd 0.0.4: More tweaks

        The key idea of prrd is simple, and described in some more detail on its webpage and its GitHub repo. Reverse dependency checks are an important part of package development that is easily done in a (serial) loop. But these checks are also generally embarassingly parallel as there is no or little interdependency between them (besides maybe shared build depedencies). See the (dated) screenshot (running six parallel workers, arranged in split byobu session).

        This release brings several smaller tweaks and improvements to the summary report that had accumulated in my use since the last release last April. We also updated the CI runners as one does these days.

      • Perl/Raku

        • vrurg: A New Release Of Cro::RPC::JSON

          I don’t usually announce regular releases of my modules. But not this time. I start this new year with the new v0.1 branch of Cro::RPC::JSON. Version 0.1.1 is currently available on CPAN (will likely be replaced with fez as soon as it is ready). The release is a result of so extensive changes in the module that I had to bump its :api version to 2.

        • gfldex: Anonymous slurpers

          I have a script where I’m only interested in the last two lines of its output.

  • Leftovers

    • Back When
    • Opinion | New Auto Safety Report Demands Biden Strengthen Federal Programs Now

      It is time for the Biden people  to end the soporific record of their predecessors, including that of those from the Obama/Biden Administration

    • He Had a Hammer: Henry Aaron Presente

      When you write for a living, you invariably pen obituaries in advance so they are ready to be published as soon as the death knell of the famous is sounded. I could never do that with Henry “Hank” Aaron. Even at 86, he seemed so precious that I was in no position to even imagine a world without him. He seemed too important to die, like a monument that people would form a human chain to protect against the hordes determined to tear him down. Aaron was living testimony not only to greatness with a bat but to this country’s racism. His willingness to testify to this reality made him the foe of the darkest corners of this country, from chat rooms to the White House.

    • Science

      • Hyderabad’s city lights killing astronomy, enthusiasts, scientists complain

        Light pollution is a menace in the city of Hyderabad which is killing the joy of looking up to the night sky, astronomy enthusiasts and scientists have complained. Praveen Suryavanshi, an amateur astronomer and educator said that just to witness a full dark sky, one now will have to travel as far as at least a 100 kms away from the city.

    • Education

    • Hardware

      • Intel avoids outsourcing embrace, investigates hack of results

        The lack of a strong embrace of outsourcing from new CEO Pat Gelsinger drove shares down 4.7% after hours. Shares rose 6.5% during regular trade, when the results were released ahead of the close. The company said it was investigating “non-authorized” access to some of the results, with the Financial Times quoting its chief financial officer as saying the microchip maker had been [cracked].

      • I have seen the laptop of the future | Stop at Zona-M

        I am not talking of that specific model, of course. I am talking of what a computer like that makes possible.

        That thing measures 61 x 61 x 43 millimeters. It weights 127 grams. It may be the core of an entirely new kind of “laptop”, that is portable computer.

      • DevEBox STM32H7 Development Boards are made for Factory Automation

        STMicro has always provided complete software support for its core modules in the past. No different for the STM32H7 MCU series that comes with complete support of Arm Cortex-M architecture. Irrespective of the board (should have STM32H7 series core module), you can use the STM32CubeH7 embedded software package, which comes with many examples for this MCU series.

        More details about the getting started guide, (in general for STM32H7 MCUs) can be found on STMicroelectronics’ website. There are also “user manuals” specific to the boards taken from the Banggood link below for STM32H750VBT6 (158MB) and STM32H743VIT6 (164MB).

    • Health/Nutrition

      • Opinion | The Scale of Loss: 400,000 Dead

        These losses will haunt us for centuries to come

      • “We’ve Let the Worst Happen”: Reflecting on 400,000 Dead

        In May of last year, ProPublica health care reporter Caroline Chen reflected on the first 100,000 lives lost to COVID-19 and posed an important question: “How do we stop the next 100,000?” Eight months later, with 300,000 additional American lives lost and the chaotic distribution of the vaccine underway, Chen shares her thoughts on where we are and what happens next.

        In your 100,000 lives lost piece, you wrote about questions we needed to ask at that moment: “How do we prevent the next 100,000 deaths from happening? How do we better protect our most vulnerable in the coming months? Even while we mourn, how can we take action, so we do not repeat this horror all over again?” It’s been almost eight months since then. What are the biggest questions we need to be asking now?

      • [Old] The Netherlands is transforming old ashtrays into bike charging stations

        There are few less appealing items in the universe than the ashtray. It’s literally a container for soot, carcinogens, and the occasional whiff of menthol. But in train stations across the Netherlands, the lanky, six-foot smoke poles are something of an architectural icon. So even as 300 of the poles were removed from stations last October when public smoking at railways became illegal, railroad owner ProRail has securely stored the poles, wanting them preserved for a new purpose.

        So what could that purpose be? Charging e-bikes.

      • When healthcare is reduced to a single number | Stop at Zona-M

        I had a “telehealth” doctor’s visit the other day. I was prescribed a scheduled medication without extensive questioning or documentation.

        Why? The prescribing physician had been given a score for me, generated by a proprietary algorithm, indicating that I was at low risk for abuse and addiction.

        The doctors employing this system have access to neither the algorithm nor the patient data it employs. All I could think was, black patients are probably being denied life-saving medication because some rudimentary algorithm flagged them for abuse potential, on the basis of their income or the neighborhood they live in.

        Life or death decisions are being placed into the hands of proprietary algorithms let loose on the public, and there is no opening of the black box or opting out.

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • SonicWall hardware VPNs hit by worst-case 0-zero-day-exploit attacks

          “…have information about hacking of a well-known firewall vendor and other security products by this they are silent and do not release press releases for their clients who are under attack due to several 0 days in particular very large companies are vulnerable technology companies,” BleepingComputer was told via email.

        • Cyber Firm SonicWall Says It Was Victim of ‘Sophisticated’ Hack

          The Silicon Valley-based company said in a statement that the two products compromised provide users with remote access to internal resources.

          The attackers exploited so-called “zero days” — a newly discovered software flaw — on certain SonicWall remote access products, the company said in a statement.

        • Former manager of Microsoft Taiwan investigated for fraud

          A former manager at the Taiwanese branch of software giant Microsoft was questioned Friday (Jan. 22) about an alleged fraud scam directed against the company.

          In 2016 and 2017, Chang Ming-fang (張銘芳) allegedly colluded with managers of other companies to forge orders to obtain discounts and products at lower prices, UDN reported.

        • School laptops sent by government arrive loaded with malware [iophk: Windows TCO]

          A number of the devices were found to be infected with a “self-propagating network worm”, according to the forum, and they also appeared to be contacting Russian servers, one teacher wrote. The Windows-based laptops were specifically infected with Gamarue.1, a worm Microsoft identified in 2012.

        • Ransomware provides the perfect cover

          Look at any list of security challenges that CISOs are most concerned about and you’ll consistently find ransomware on them. It’s no wonder: ransomware attacks cripple organizations due to the costs of downtime, recovery, regulatory penalties, and lost revenue. Unfortunately, cybercriminals have added an extra sting to these attacks: they are using ransomware as a smokescreen to divert security teams from other clandestine activities behind the scenes.

          Attackers are using the noise of ransomware to their advantage as it provides the perfect cover to distract attention so they can take aim at their real target: exfiltrating IP [sic], research, and other valuable data from the corporate network.

        • Global ransom DDoS extortionists are retargeting companies

          According to Radware, companies that received this letter also received threats in August and September 2020. Security researchers’ analysis of this new wave of ransom letters suggested that the same threat actors from the middle of 2020 are behind these malicious communications.

          When the DDoS extortion campaign started in August of 2020, a single Bitcoin was worth approximately $10,000. It’s now worth roughly $30,000. The attackers cited this in the latest round of ransom letters, and it represents the impact the rising price of Bitcoin is having on the threat landscape.

          A few hours after receiving the message, organizations were hit by DDoS attacks that exceeded 200 Gbps and lasted over nine hours without slowdown or interruption. A maximum attack size of 237 Gbps was reached with a total duration of nearly 10 hours, the alert warned.

        • Boeing 737 MAX is a reminder of the REAL problem with software | Stop at Zona-M

          And that problem almost never is software.

        • Security

          • diffoscope 165 released

            The diffoscope maintainers are pleased to announce the release of diffoscope version 165. This version includes the following changes:

            [ Dimitrios Apostolou ]
            * Introduce the --no-acl and --no-xattr arguments [later collapsed to
              --extended-filesystem-attributes] to improve performance.
            * Avoid calling the external stat command.
            [ Chris Lamb ]
            * Collapse --acl and --xattr into --extended-filesystem-attributes to cover
              all of these extended attributes, defaulting the new option to false (ie.
              to not check these very expensive external calls).
            [ Mattia Rizzolo ]
            * Override several lintian warnings regarding prebuilt binaries in the
            * source.
            * Add a pytest.ini file to explicitly use Junit's xunit2 format.
            * Ignore the Python DeprecationWarning message regarding the `imp` module
              deprecation as it comes from a third-party library.
            * debian/rules: filter the content of the d/*.substvars files

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • An EU parliament website for COVID testing allegedly broke the EU’s privacy laws

              The website was set up to help MEPs schedule COVID tests, and while it didn’t handle any health information itself, sending data to the US for processing would still be illegal. According to the complaint, the testing website made over 150 requests to third parties, including Google and Stripe. Under EU law, data can only be transferred to the US if “an adequate level of protection for the personal data [can] be ensured,” and noyb argues that the companies “clearly fall under relevant US surveillance laws that allow [targeting of] EU citizens.”

            • Confidentiality

    • Defence/Aggression

      • What Our Forever Wars Will Look Like Under Biden

        Hard as it is to believe in this time of record pandemic deaths, insurrection, and an unprecedented encore impeachment, Joe Biden is now officially at the helm of the US war machine. He is, in other words, the fourth president to oversee America’s unending and unsuccessful post-9/11 military campaigns. In terms of active US combat, that’s only happened once before, in the Philippines, America’s second-longest (if often forgotten) overseas combat campaign.

      • Alexei Navalny: ‘More than 3,000 detained’ in protests across Russia

        Tens of thousands of people defied a heavy police presence to join some of the largest rallies against President Vladimir Putin in years.

        In Moscow, riot police were seen beating and dragging away protesters.

        Mr Navalny, President Putin’s most high-profile critic, called for protests after his arrest last Sunday.

      • Tensions running high after gun incident near House floor

        Lawmaker tensions are running high this week after a Republican lawmaker nearly brought a gun onto the House floor, further stoking concerns about Capitol security and whether members of Congress need protection from one another.

        The renewed anxiety just two weeks after the deadly Jan. 6 attack was sparked by Rep. Andy Harris (R-Md.) when he set off a newly installed metal detector off the House floor with a concealed gun, despite a longtime ban on firearms in the chamber.

        The incident followed numerous reports of other Republicans, accustomed to bypassing metal detectors in the Capitol, chafing at the new security measures. Some Democrats are now openly expressing that they don’t feel safe around certain colleagues.

      • Ugandan Airstrikes in Somalia Kill 189 Al-Shabab Fighters

        AMISOM has been in Somalia for more than 10 years, keeping the peace and supporting Somalia’s government to fend off attacks from al-Shabab militants. The group aims to topple the government and impose its own harsh interpretation of Islamic Sharia law.

        The group controlled large swaths of south-central Somalia until 2011, when it was driven out of Mogadishu by African Union troops.

      • My Name Is Selma

        Selma van de Perre was seventeen when World War Two began. Until then, being Jewish in the Netherlands had been of no consequence. But by 1941 this simple fact had become a matter of life or death. Several times, Selma avoided being rounded up by the Nazis. Then, in an act of defiance, she joined the Resistance movement, using the pseudonym Margareta van der Kuit. For two years ‘Marga’ risked it all. Using a fake ID, and passing as Aryan she travelled around the country delivering newsletters, sharing information, keeping up morale – doing, as she later explained, what ‘had to be done’.

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • Opinion | ‘Return to Normalcy’

        Let us rise to Biden’s call and dare to dream big

      • Independence Is the Progressive Solution to US Colonialism in Puerto Rico
      • Opinion | QAnon and America’s Political Moment

        It will not be enough to simply to call out groups such as QAnon and demand that they shut up or be silenced

      • Biden’s Immigration Declarations Open Up New Political Terrain for Organizers
      • John Dean: Insurrectionist Senators are Co-Conspirators and Should Not Sit in Judgment of Trump

        AOC: “Sen. Hawley is trying to wiggle out of inciting a riot that killed 5″

      • President Biden’s Tech To-do List

        President Joe Biden is inheriting tricky tech questions including how to rein in powerful digital superstars, what to do about Chinese technology and how to bring more Americans online.

        Here’s a glimpse at opportunities and challenges in technology policy for the new Biden administration: [...]

      • Hey President Biden, Thanks but I Don’t Want “Unity” : You can keep your calls for “togetherness.” I only want equity and accountability.

        If it’s the same “unity” prominent members of the Republican party are now calling for in the wake of what many considered to be the worst attack on the U.S. federal government since 9/11, keep it. That type of “unity” is not about ending a deep-seated divide or quashing the rise of misinformation that mothered it. It’s about allowing men like Senator Lindsey Graham, Senator Ted Cruz (who today wore a mask emblazoned with the words “Come and take it”), and others who felt empowered to subvert a fair and free election to sidestep the consequences of their actions.

      • Facebook purges left-wing pages and individuals

        On Friday, Facebook carried out a purge of left-wing, antiwar and progressive pages and accounts, including leading members of the Socialist Equality Party. Facebook gave no explanation why the accounts were disabled or even a public acknowledgement that the deletions had occurred.

        At least a half dozen leading members of the Socialist Equality Party had their Facebook accounts permanently disabled. This included the public account of Genevieve Leigh, the national secretary of the International Youth and Students for Social Equality, and the personal account of Niles Niemuth, the US managing editor of the World Socialist Web Site. In 2016, Niemuth was the Socialist Equality Party’s candidate for US Vice President.

        Facebook also disabled the London Bus Drivers Rank-and-File Committee Facebook page, which was set up with the support of the Socialist Equality Party (UK) to organize opposition among bus drivers. This follows a widely discussed call for a walkout by bus drivers to demand elementary protections against the COVID-19 pandemic.

        None of the individuals whose accounts were disabled had violated Facebook’s policies. Upon attempting to appeal the deletion of their account, they received an error message stating, “We cannot review the decision to disable your account.”

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • New Toolkit Tallies Up Victories and Summarizes Strategies to Defund the Police
      • Cori Bush and Ayanna Pressley Lead Call for Biden to Oppose Death Penalty
      • Why Supporting Families Who Have Abortions Later in Pregnancy Is My Life’s Work
      • The Religious Transformation of French Schools

        Once again, Mila has found herself without a high school. On a social network, she accidentally gave the name of her new military school. Its management promptly excluded her for being a potential threat to the students’ security. “Devastated by so much cowardice”, Mila’s father wrote. “Even the army cannot protect her and allow her to continue her education, what can we do, us, her parents? This observation is for us a horror film”.

        Even the French army cannot protect her? “She is 17 years old and now lives like the staff of Charlie Hebdo, in a bunker; it is unbearable!” Mila’s lawyer, Richard Malka, said.

      • [Old] Modern slavery statement

        This statement provides some background to our organisation and our supply chains. It also sets out the work that we have undertaken during the financial year ended 30 September 2020 to ensure that slavery and human trafficking are not taking place either in our organisation or within our supply chains.

      • Capitol Police questioned anew after Guard forced to garages

        The National Guard said it originally moved troops out of the Capitol Rotunda and other spaces to garages at the behest of the Capitol Police. The Guardsmen were allowed back inside late Thursday after reports were widely shared of the conditions in the garages, with few bathrooms and little covering from the cold.

        Capitol Police Interim Chief Yogananda Pittman issued a statement Friday saying her agency “did not instruct the National Guard to vacate the Capitol Building facilities.”

        But two Capitol Police officers who spoke on condition of anonymity contradicted her statement, saying they were told department higher-ups had ordered the Guardsmen out. It was unclear why. The two officers spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized by the department to speak.

    • Monopolies

      • Opinion | Beware Corporate ‘Democracy Washing’: Twitter, Trump, and the Danger of Privatizing the Fight Against Fascism

        Twitter canceling Trump’s account shows that real political power in the United States shifted from government to corporations.

      • Patents

        • IPO Webinar on Videoconferencing at the EPO [Ed: The lobby of IPO is promoting and celebrating illegal practices, which go against the law but help enrich the patent profiteers]

          The Intellectual Property Owners Association (IPO) will offer a one-hour webinar entitled “Videoconferencing at the EPO” on January 27, 2021 from 11:00 am to 12:00 pm (ET). Mike Jennings of AA Thornton, James Pickford of Procter & Gamble, and Gwilym Roberts of Kilburn & Strode will provide an overview of how videoconferencing is being relied on increasingly for formal hearings at the European Patent Office — for examination, oppositions and appeals — and how this provides an option for applicants/proprietors and opponents to participate or observe from their home countries. The panel will summarize the changes to EPO rules and procedures (including December 2020 updates), share their tips and experiences, and also discuss EPO management’s plans to promote videoconference examiner consultations, which have been an effective tool for U.S. attorneys working with the USPTO.

      • Copyrights

        • Google threatens to withdraw search engine in Australia

          Google has threatened to stop making its search engine available in Australia if the federal government’s proposed mandatory media bargaining code becomes law in its current form.

          Managing director Mel Silva on Friday told a senate inquiry that the landmark code “remains unworkable”, despite government attempts to placate the web giant in a December revision.

          Google had previously warned that the code could lead to a “dramatically worse” online experience and the possible end to free services, but until now had not flagged stopping Google Search entirely.

        • MPA Seeks Network Engineer to Help Expose Online Pirates

          The Motion Picture Association (MPA) is hoping to recruit a network engineer to assist in its war against online piracy. Among other things, the Hollywood group is looking for a candidate with knowledge of VPNs, reverse proxies, Whois privacy services, and Internet registries such as RIPE and ARIN. Part of the job description is to find suitable targets for civil and criminal lawsuits.

        • Anti-Piracy Group: Copyright Trolling is a “Stain On The Fight Against Illegal Content”

          After a Danish law firm and one of its partners were charged with fraud for their part in a copyright-trolling scheme against alleged BitTorrent pirates, local anti-piracy group Rights Alliance has criticized the settlement model. Describing it as a “stain” on the fight against illegal content, the group says that site-blocking is a better option. Unfortunately, copyright troll schemes undermine that too.


Links 23/1/2021: Chromium Pains and New Debian Maintainers

Posted in News Roundup at 11:57 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Audiocasts/Shows

  • Kernel Space

    • Lilbits: Linux on Apple Silicon and the uncertain future of the LG Rollable smartphone

      Apple launched the first Macs with Apple Silicon a few months ago, delivering a big boost in performance while also reducing power consumption. One downside of Apple’s switch from Intel processors to its own ARM-based custom chips though, is that you can no longer easily install Windows alongside macOS using Boot Camp, and for a while there was no easy way to install GNU/Linux distributions either.

      But this week developers at ARM virtualization company Corellium announced that they’d ported Linux to run on a Mac Mini with an Apple M1 chip. Corellium CTO Chris Wade says the team’s proof of concept build of Ubuntu (based on a version made to run on Raspberry Pi computers) is “completely usable,” and boots a “full Ubuntu desktop” from a USB flash drive.

  • Applications

    • New release candidate: Tor

      There’s a new release candidate available for download. If you build Tor from source, you can download the source code for from the download page on the website. Packages should be available over the coming weeks, with a new alpha Tor Browser release likely around this coming Tuesday.

      Tor is the second release candidate in its series. It fixes several bugs present in previous releases.

  • Instructionals/Technical

    • Remembering the LAN

      We can have the LAN-like experience of the 90′s back again, and we can add the best parts of the 21st century internet. A safe small space of people we trust, where we can program away from the prying eyes of the multi-billion-person internet. Where the outright villainous will be kept at bay by good identity services and good crypto.

      The broader concept of virtualizing networks has existed forever: the Virtual Private Network. New protocols make VPNs better than before, Wireguard is pioneering easy and efficient tunneling between peers. Marry the VPN to identity, and make it work anywhere, and you can have a virtual 90s-style LAN made up of all your 21st century devices. Let the internet be the dumb pipe, let your endpoints determine who they will talk to based on the person at the other end.

    • Predicting Hard Drive Failure with Machine Learning

      These data points are labelled as members of the negative or positive class, which in this case means “hard drive operates normally” or “hard drive has failed.” Note that the “positive” in “positive class” doesn’t mean “good.” Instead, it means “this sample exhibits the behavior we’re looking out for.” A machine learning model would read this dataset, then look for patterns in the features that determine why each hard drive ended up in its class.

      Normally there would be enough data points and features that a human couldn’t read the whole dataset—let alone spot a pattern in it! This example is simplified enough for us to step through the process that a model might follow. Let’s look for a pattern in each feature:

    • Escape from System D, episode VII

      Well, it’s been an awfully long time since I last blogged about Dinit (web page, github), my service-manager / init / wannabe-Systemd-competitor. I’d have to say, I never thought it would take this long to come this far; when I started the project, it didn’t seem such a major undertaking, but as is often the case with hobby projects, life started getting in the way.

    • Doing «Data Science» even if you have never heard the words before

      I’d like to shatter some of this mystery today. Let’s do some machine learning, find some patterns in our data – perhaps even make some predictions. With good old Python only – no 2-gigabyte library, and no arcane knowledge needed beforehand.

    • How To Install Emacs Editor on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS – idroot

      In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Emacs Editor on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS. For those of you who didn’t know, Emacs is a very useful plus feature-rich text editor that may be used across multiple various platforms. Because of its considerable support for writing code within different languages, it is favored by most programmers.

      This article assumes you have at least basic knowledge of Linux, know how to use the shell, and most importantly, you host your site on your own VPS. The installation is quite simple and assumes you are running in the root account, if not you may need to add ‘sudo‘ to the commands to get root privileges. I will show you through the step by step installation of Emacs Editor on Ubuntu 20.04 (Focal Fossa). You can follow the same instructions for Ubuntu 18.04, 16.04, and any other Debian based distribution like Linux Mint.

    • How to Change Debian’s Default Applications

      We all have our preferences when it comes to the application we want to use for opening and working with a certain file type. For example, whenever I start using a new version of an operating system, I install and switch to the VLC media player for playing music and videos. In Debian, you can change your default applications both through the command line and the graphical user interface through the simple steps described in this tutorial. We have performed the commands and procedure described in this tutorial on the latest Debian 10 Buster system.

    • How To Install Chrome In Ubuntu / Linux Mint | Tips On UNIX

      Google Chrome one of the common and most widely used web browsers in the world. It is blazing fast and easy to use with security features.

      Google Chrome‘s new version 88 comes with more changes and one of the notable changes is the end of flash support.

      This tutorial will be helpful for beginners to install Chrome in Ubuntu 20.04, Ubuntu 20.10, Ubuntu 18.04, and Linux Mint 20.1

    • How to Install and Configure Gogs Git Service on Ubuntu Linux

      The Gogs is a compact and self-hosted hassle-free Git service that you can install on your Ubuntu Linux server and distribution to enjoy the Git facilities. The Gogs services are lightweight yet powerful; you can install the Gogs services on Docker, cloud server, and even on a Raspberry Pi system. Even old PC and hardware systems can handle the Gogs services. The Gogs is written in the Go language. The simple dashboard, custom domain support, HTTP security, and multi-database support of the Gogs Git Service will give you a comfortable setting to use the Git service on your Ubuntu system.

    • How to Install and Use GCC Compiler on Linux System

      While building the Linux kernel, the developers had to build a free and open-source compiler to create the kernel and modules. The GCC compiler was build under the GNU project. In the current version of all Linux distributions, the GCC compiler comes pre-installed inside the operating system. You can use the GCC compiler to compile C, C++, Ada, Go, and a few other object-oriented programming languages. You can compile codes on your terminal shell through the GCC compiler on a Linux system.

    • How to create, compile & run a C Program in Linux terminal – Linux Shout

      The C programming language is still alive because it is simple and can do a lot of things. As we know Turbo C compiler is a discontinued integrated development environment, well, on Linux you don’t need it as there is already GNU Compiler Collection to compile and run C or C++ programs. Therefore, if you know the C language, it is much easier to learn, write programs and run other programming languages ​​on Linux operating systems such as C ++, Java, Perl, or PHP, as the languages ​​have certain similarities. Here we will show the steps to install GCC compiler and how to write, compile and run a C program in Linux.

    • How to create bootable Ubuntu 20.04 on windows 10

      I think so; a few weeks back, I was doing something on my Ubuntu 20.04. Suddenly my friend knocks on my door, and he was curiously peeking on my laptop screen. I asked what happen, Benhur?

      Benhur replied, what are you doing on your laptop, It is totally different from my laptop screen, and It fascinated me. Will you tell me what it is?

    • Linux 101: How to copy files and directories from the command line

      Are you new to Linux? If so, you’ve probably found the command line can be a bit intimidating. Don’t worry–it is for everyone at the beginning. That’s why I’m here to guide you through the process, and today I’m going to show you how to copy files and folders from the command line.

      Why would you need to copy files and folders this way? You might find yourself on a GUI-less Linux server and need to make a backup of a configuration file or copy a data directory.

      Trust me, at some point you’re going to need to be able to do this. Let’s find out how.

    • How to install Headless Dropbox on Ubuntu Server

      Dropbox can be termed as cloud-based file storage that makes your files available at any given time as long as you are connected to the internet. A local user accesses files by syncing to Dropbox. This aids to automatically update all removed and added files to your cloud-based storage. Most people are curious to know how the headless Dropbox can be installed on an Ubuntu Server. To learn more, follow the article below for detailed information, including screenshots of how the installation process is done.

    • Masterby Books by Michael W Lucas

      Look what was delievered a few days ago! Can’t wait to skill up in both SUDO and PAM modules.

      Michael W Lucas has written dozens of technical books on some of the most fascinating aspects of systems administration – I’ve read SSH Mastery book in the past and will someday try using FreeBSD for real just because Michael wrote so many books about this wonderful OS.

    • Cloud Native Patterns: a free ebook for developers

      Building cloud native applications is a challenging undertaking, especially considering the rapid evolution of cloud native computing. But it’s also very liberating and rewarding. You can develop new patterns and practices where the limitations of hardware dependent models, geography, and size no longer exist. This approach to technology can make cloud application developers more agile and efficient, even as it reduces deployment costs and increases independence from cloud service providers.

    • I am TheeMahn

      Let’s say you screw up your sources, Keysnatcher will fix them automatically. Nasup, dont have a NAS No Problemo I just told you use 0 memory. I can make it disable the service, I would not want it adding 6 seconds to your boot time. I have 20 Gigabit Networking and really understand. If you do have a NAS I want that picked up off the rip.

    • How to Install and Use the Etcher Tool on Ubuntu

      In most cases, when we’re trying out a new OS, we choose to install it on the main machine, a virtual machine, or to boot alongside another operating system.
      One of the upsides to using a Linux system is that we can boot using Live media, which makes it possible to test a specific distribution without altering the primary structure. Using bootable media such as USB drives, we can burn an iso image and boot from it or even use it to install the OS.

      Although there are various ways to create bootable media—UnetBootIn, dd (Unix), Rufus, Disk Utility, etcetera, —having a simple and cross-platform tool can be massively advantageous.

    • What is the difference between Paramiko and Netmiko?

      When it comes to networking, there is a wide range of perspectives, and one cannot master how to interact with all the devices in the real world. However, all networking devices share similar functionality that, when mastered, are automatable.

      As mentioned in my other tutorials, programmers are lazy and always looking to improve efficiency—thus doing the least work —, and when it comes to automating network-related issues, many often jump at the chance.

      In today’s quick guide, I’ll introduce you to automating SSH using two popular Python libraries: Paramiko and Netmiko. We will create simple python scripts using the two libraries to automate SSH and interact with network devices.

      I choose this approach because a guide primarily focused on the differences between Paramiko and Netmiko would be too short—a simple table would suffice—and no-concrete. By taking this approach, you’ll be better able to experiment with them and see which does what and how.

    • How to Use Unison to Synchronize Files Between Servers

      This tutorial will show you how to set up and use the Unison File synchronization tool on Debian systems. Using Unison, you can sync files between two different disks or directories in the same system or two other systems over the network.

    • How to detect the file system type of an unmounted device on Linux

      If you want to store data on a new hard drive or a USB memory stick, what you first need to do is to create a “filesystem” on it. This step is also known as “formating” the drive or the USB stick. A filesystem determines in exactly what format data is organized, stored and accessed on a physical device. It is often necessary to know the type of filesystem created on a hard disk or a USB thumb drive even before mounting it. For example, you may need to explicitly specify filesystem type when mounting a disk device, or have to use a filesystem-specific mount command (e.g., mount.aufs, mount.ntfs).

    • How to Install yay AUR Helper in Arch Linux [Beginner’s Guide]

      This beginner’s guide explains the steps to install the Yay AUR helper in Arch Linux.

    • 2 Simple Steps to Set Up SSH Public Key Authentication on CentOS

      This tutorial explains how to set up SSH public key authentication on a CentOS/RHEL desktop. There’re basically two ways of authenticating user login with OpenSSH server: password authentication and public key authentication. The latter is also known as passwordless SSH login because you don’t need to enter your password.

    • Linux 101: Renaming files and folders – TechRepublic

      I’m going to help you learn a bit more about Linux. If you’re new to the operating system, there are quite a few fundamental tasks you’re going to need to know how to do. One such task is renaming files and folders.

      You might think there’s a handy rename command built into the system. There is, but it’s not what you assume. Instead of renaming a file or folder, you move it from one name to another, with the mv command. This task couldn’t be any easier.

    • Linux 101: Listing files and folders within a directory – TechRepublic

      For those new to Linux, you might be a bit concerned about learning the command line. After all, you probably come from a platform that uses a GUI for nearly every task and haven’t spent much time with a command line interface. Fear not, that’s what we’re here for.

      This time around, I want to show you how to list files and folders within a directory. This may sound like a very rudimentary task, but you’ll be surprised at how much information you can actually glean from a single command. We’re going to start out with the basics.

      First, log in to your Linux system. If this is a GUI-less server, you’ll already be at a terminal window, so you’re ready to go. If not, open a terminal app and you should find yourself in your home directory.

    • qBittorrent 4.3.3 Released! How to Install in Ubuntu 20.04, 20.10

      The qBittorrent 4.3.3 was released a few days ago. Here’s how to install it in Ubuntu 20.04, Ubuntu 20.10, Ubuntu 18.04, and Linux Mint 19.x / 20.

      This release contains mainly bug-fixes. Because Xcode doesn’t support C++17, Mac OS 10.13 (High Sierra) is no longer supported. And Ubuntu 18.04 is highly to be dropped in the next release.

    • Linux 101: How to create a directory from the command line – TechRepublic

      Hello admins, Jack Wallen here with a Linux 101-level tip. This time around we’re going to learn how to create a directory from the command line. I know, it sounds incredibly basic. It is, but it’s also a skill you’re going to need to know. Why? Because at some point you’re going to be faced with administering a Linux server without a GUI.

      When that happens, you’ll be glad you know how to create a directory from the CLI.

      But how do you do it? It’s actually incredibly simple.

    • Gitlab runners with nspawn

      I need to setup gitlab runners, and I try to not involve docker in my professional infrastructure if I can avoid it.

    • How to install Notepad++ on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS

      Even though it has a small size but it has core word processor features and known for the ability to handle the syntax of all common programming languages or ​​even more.

      Notepad ++ doesn’t heavy on resources that’s why we can easily install it on Linux distros such as Ubuntu to access various tools, to get support in our work with syntax highlighting, multi-view, drag & drop, auto-completion, and much more.

      Being an open-source program, its source code is available on its official website plus it supports plug-ins to extend features that make work even easier. We can select Plugin-ins during installation.

    • How to install Code::Blocks on a Chromebook

      Today we are looking at how to install Code::Blocks on a Chromebook. Please follow the video/audio guide as a tutorial where we explain the process step by step and use the commands below.

    • How to Create a Web App in Linux Mint

      If you haven’t heard, Linux Mint 20.1 “Ulyssa” just dropped, and it comes prepackaged with a new utility called Web App Manager. In short, it allows you open and use a website, such as Twitter, Facebook, or Discord, as if it were a standalone app.

      Here’s how Mint’s Web App Manager works and how to put it to use.

  • Games

    • Skul: The Hero Slayer is a delightful repeatable head-swapping action rogue-lite out now

      After being in Early Access since February 2020, SouthPAW Games have now released their head-swapping rogue-lite action platformer Skul: The Hero Slayer.

      Taking place in a world where it seems that things are a bit backwards. The heroes appear to be going on a rampage, enslaving other creatures to help with their dirty work and destroy the demons once and for all. Everyone has been taken prisoner, except for you, a little little Skul. With action comparable to the likes of Dead Cells which I adore, and Hollow Knight, this is a rogue-lite you’re going to want to keep on playing.

      You’re no ordinary fighter though, as you can swap your regular boring old skul with another. When you do this, you gain some pretty impressive abilities and there’s quite a lot of different skul’s to find. This makes it quite unique because it can end up being very different on each run.


      I should note that the current build on Linux has an issue of a black screen instead of the main menu, although all it does it get you to click a button to load back into the game which does work so it’s not a big problem. I’ve let the developer know.

    • Tencent now own majority stake in Don’t Starve and Oxygen Not Included creator Klei

      More game industry news coming at you following the Team17 buying up Golf With Your Friends and YoYo Games being acquired by Opera we now have Klei Entertainment agreeing for Tencent to take a majority stake in them.

      Speaking in a forum post, studio head Jamie Cheng mentioned they’ve “agreed to deal for Tencent to purchase a majority stake in Klei Entertainment” and that “Klei retains full autonomy of creative and operations across all aspects of the studio, including projects, talent, and more”.

      Klei have actually been working with Tencent since 2016, as Tencent helped Klei distribute games through China on the WeGame platform and more recently a mobile Don’t Starve game. Cheng also mentioned how a “large proportion” of their players are actually from China.

    • Quirky comedy action-adventure Skellboy Refractured is out now | GamingOnLinux

      Skellboy Refractured, the new and fresh release from UmaikiGames is out with Linux support as an expanded version to the game that originally released for the Nintendo Switch.

    • Interested in Godot Engine and games made with it? GodotCon is up on January 23 | GamingOnLinux

      Tomorrow, January 23 there’s going to be an online GodotCon that’s going live on YouTube. This is a chance for anyone interested to learn more about the free and open source game engine Godot Engine.

      Interestingly, it won’t be live. The talks are pre-recorded according to the announcement. However, to help with that and so you can chat with the Godot team and other users and developers using Godot, the team has now set up their own dedicated social chat area using Rocket.chat.

  • Desktop Environments/WMs

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

      • This week in KDE: the Plasma 5.20 beta is here!

        Well folks, you finally have a chance to test out Plasma 5.21, in beta form! Please do install it and find all the bugs we missed. Bug reports have already started pouring in, and we’ll fix them as fast as we can in the next month.


        Kate now has a searchable HUD-style command palette that lets you trigger menu items with super speed! It’s activated using the Ctrl+Alt+I shortcut, and we’re investigating adding it to other KDE apps as well in the form of a re-usable framework component.

  • Distributions

    • BSD

      • FreeBSD quarterly status report for Q4 2020

        The best way to keep up with FreeBSD development from an outsider’s perspective. FreeBSD is on my radar for the UltraSPARC server-as-a-workstation project – a reader has donated a SunFire V245 that’s currently in shipping to me – so I’m trying to be a bit more in tune than I usually am with the world of FreeBSD.

    • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandriva/OpenMandriva Family

      • First Look at OpenMandriva Lx 4.2 on the Raspberry Pi 4

        When OpenMandriva announced the Release Candidate of OpenMandriva Lx 4.2 earlier this month, it revealed the fact that they finished the AArch64 (ARM 64-bit) port. That’s amazing news for OpenMandriva Lx fans who own an ARM64 device like the Raspberry Pi, Pinebook Pro, or even the PinePhone.

        The even better news is that OpenMandriva provided installable images for various popular devices, such as Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+, Raspberry Pi 4 Model B, Pinebook Pro, PinePhone, and Rock Pi 4C. A generic AArch64 image for UEFI compatible devices, such as various server boards, is also available for download.

      • Brave browser updated to 1.19.86

        Brave is a free and open-source web browser developed by Brave Software, Inc. based on the Chromium web browser. It blocks ads and website trackers, and provides a way for users to send cryptocurrency contributions in the form of Basic Attention Tokens to websites and content creators.

    • SUSE/OpenSUSE

      • Top 6 Reasons Why You Should Use OpenSUSE

        Some of the most popular Linux distributions lay in three categories: Ubuntu/Debian-based distros, Fedora, and Arch Linux. Today, I will give you an insight into one distribution you might not have used before and why you should try it out – The openSUSE Linux distribution.

        I have used so many Linux distributions either for development, as a server, or just for fun and experience. Of all these distributions, I always find OpenSUSE being a unique distro. From the default Desktop background, applications all the way to executing commands with the zypper package manager – openSUSE feels so shiny and sacred. In this post, we will look at the Top 6 Reasons Why You Should Use OpenSUSE.

      • The Unified Path Ahead For Building SUSE Linux Enterprise + openSUSE Leap

        Red Hat hasn’t been the only major enterprise Linux distribution shifting around their pieces with regards to how RHEL is formed with moving to CentOS Stream as its future upstream. Over the past year especially openSUSE Leap and SUSE Linux Enterprise having been moving closer together with the source trees now being more closely aligned between Leap and “SLE”. SUSE has published an insightful blog post series detailing the prior way that openSUSE Tumbleweed and Leap tied in with SUSE Linux Enterprise and then the direction they have been shifting.

    • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

      • Peter Hutterer: Auto-updating XKB for new kernel keycodes

        This two-part approach exists so either part can be swapped without affecting the other. Swap the second part to an exclamation mark and paragraph symbol and you have the French version of this key, swap it to dash/underscore and you have the German version of the key – all without having to change the keycode.

        Back in the golden days of everyone-does-what-they-feel-like, keyboard manufacturers (presumably happily so) changed the key codes and we needed model-specific keycodes in XKB. The XkbModel configuration is a leftover from these trying times.

        The Linux kernel’s evdev API has largely done away with this. It provides a standardised set of keycodes, defined in linux/input-event-codes.h, and ensures, with the help of udev [0], that all keyboards actually conform to that. An evdev XKB keycode is a simple “kernel keycode + 8″ [1] and that applies to all keyboards. On top of that, the kernel uses semantic definitions for the keys as they’d be in the US layout. KEY_Q is the key that would, behold!, produce a Q. Or an A in the French layout because they just have to be different, don’t they? Either way, with evdev the Xkb Model configuration largely points to nothing and only wastes a few cycles with string parsing.

      • Máirín Duffy: Fedora Design Team Sessions Live: Session #1

        As announced in the Fedora Community Blog, today we had our inaugural Fedora Design Team Live Session

        Thanks for everyone who joined! I lost count at how many folks we had participate, we had at least 9 and we had a very productive F35 wallpaper brainstorming session!

      • Knowledge meets machine learning for smarter decisions, Part 2

        Red Hat Decision Manager helps organizations introduce the benefits of artificial intelligence to their daily operations. It is based on Drools, a popular open source project known for its powerful rules engine.

        In Part 1 of this article, we built a machine learning algorithm and stored it in a Predictive Model Markup Language (PMML) file. In Part 2, we’ll combine the machine learning logic with deterministic knowledge defined using a Decision Model and Notation (DMN) model. DMN is a recent standard introduced by the Object Management Group. It provides a common notation to capture an application’s decision logic so that business users can understand it.

      • Four tactics to build Twitter followings for open source communities

        If you work in a role related to marketing, you’ve probably heard of brand personality, the human characteristics companies use to market themselves and their products. On Twitter, it’s fast food giant Wendy’s claim to fame, and it even drives impact on many of Red Hat’s own social accounts.

      • Part 1 – Rancher Kubernetes Engine (RKE) Security Best Practices for Cluster Setup | StackRox
      • Part 2 – Rancher Kubernetes Engine (RKE) Security Best Practices for Authentication, Authorization, and Cluster Access
      • Part 3 – Rancher Kubernetes Engine (RKE) Security Best Practice for Container and Runtime Security
      • Red Hat’s Disruption of CentOS Unleashes Storm of Dissent

        Five weeks after angering much of the CentOS Linux developer community by unveiling controversial changes to the no-cost CentOS operating system, Red Hat has unveiled alternatives for affected users that give them several options for using existing Red Hat products.

        But for many users of CentOS Linux, the Red Hat options won’t solve the huge problems that were created for them when Red Hat announced Dec. 8 that CentOS would no longer include a stable version with a long, steady future. Instead, CentOS will now only be offered as a free CentOS Stream operating system which will be a rolling release with frequent updates, essentially turning it into a beta OS that is no longer suitable for reliable production workloads. For users who have deployed CentOS throughout the internet, data centers, corporate and business uses and more, this is a potentially major blow.

      • Fedora program update: 2021-03

        Here’s your report of what has happened in Fedora this week. The mass rebuild is delayed until Monday.

        I have weekly office hours in #fedora-meeting-1. Drop by if you have any questions or comments about the schedule, Changes, elections, or anything else.

    • Debian Family

      • Bits from Debian: New Debian Maintainers (November and December 2020)

        The following contributors were added as Debian Maintainers in the last two months:

        Timo Röhling
        Fabio Augusto De Muzio Tobich
        Arun Kumar Pariyar
        Francis Murtagh
        William Desportes
        Robin Gustafsson
        Nicholas Guriev


      • Must ‘completely free’ mean ‘hard to install’? Newbie gripe sparks some soul-searching among Debian community

        A post on the Debian developer list about issues installing the operating system on a laptop sparked a debate about whether Debian’s free software principles have become a blocker to adoption.

        Wanting to convert his laptop from Windows 10 to Debian, Dan Pal clicked “Download” on the Linux distro’s homepage. It did not install because his wireless chipset was not supported. He succeeded eventually by downloading a DVD image, but had to hunt for it. “The current policy of hiding other versions of Debian is limiting the adoption of your OS by people like me who are interested in moving from Windows 10,” he said.

        There is a distributable driver for this wireless card but it is non-free, which means it is not officially part of Debian. It is a good principle, but works against users if it completely blocks installation.

        The issue has been debated before. “I idly wonder if we could call it firmware and call it a day. I tried to propose that a bunch of times and was not successful,” said a reply to the post.

    • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

      • José Antonio Rey: New times, new solutions

        Just as humans change, the Ubuntu community is also changing. People interact in different ways. Platforms that did not exist before are now available, and the community changes as the humans in it change as well.

        When we started the Local Communities project several years ago, we did it with the sole purpose of celebrating Ubuntu. The ways in which we celebrated included release parties, conferences, and gatherings in IRC. However, we have lately seen a decline in the momentum we had with regards to participation in this project. We have not done a review of the project since its inception, and inevitably, the Community Council believes that it is time to do a deep dive at how we can regain that momentum and continue getting together to celebrate Ubuntu.

        As such, we are putting together the Local Communities Research Committee, an independent entity overseen by the Community Council, which will help us understand the behavior of Local Community teams, how to better adapt to their needs, and to create a model that is suitable for the world we are living in today.

  • Devices/Embedded

  • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

    • Raptor Announces Kestrel Open-Source, Open HDL/Firmware Soft BMC

      Raptor Engineering known for their work on open-source POWER9 systems has announced Kestrel, an open-source baseboard management controller (BMC) design that is open down to the HDL design and firmware.

      Raptor describes Kestrel as “the world’s first open HDL / open firmware soft BMC, built on POWER and capable of IPLing existing OpenPOWER systems!” This isn’t a physical BMC chip but a “soft” BMC that is currently designed and tested on Lattice ECP-5 FPGAs. It can currently handle an initial program load (IPL) for a POWER9 host like the Blackbird and Talos II systems of Raptor Computing Systems after deactivating the existing ASpeed hardware BMC found on those systems.

    • Apache Superset Reaches Top-Level Status For Big Data Visualizations

      The Apache Software Foundation announced on Thursday that Apache Superset reached “top-level” status.

      Apache Superset is the project’s big data visualization and business intelligence web solution. Apache Superset allows for big data exploration and visualization with data from a variety of databases ranging from SQLite and MySQL to Amazon Redshift, Google BigQuery, Snowflake, Oracle Database, IBM DB2, and a variety of other compatible data sources.

    • Intel oneAPI Level Zero 1.1 Headers/Loader Released

      The oneAPI Level Zero repository consisting of the Level Zero API headers, Level Zero loader, and validation layer have reached version 1.1.

      Following last year’s big oneAPI 1.0 “Gold” status, Intel’s open-source oneAPI effort continues moving along with the Level Zero focus as their low-level, direct-to-metal interface for offload accelerators like GPUs and other “XPU” devices.

    • [Older] A short journey to x86 long mode in coreboot on recent Intel platforms

      While it was difficult to add initial x86_64 support in coreboot, as described in my last blog article how-to-not-add-x86_64-support-to-coreboot it was way easier on real hardware. During the OSFC we did a small hackathon at 9elements and got x86_64 working in coreboot on recent Intel platforms.

      If you want to test new code that deals with low level stuff like enabling x86_64 mode in assembly, it’s always good to test it on qemu using KVM. It runs the code in ring 0 instead of emulating every single instruction and thus is very close to bare metal machines.

    • Schedule appointments with an open source alternative to Doodle

      In previous years, this annual series covered individual apps. This year, we are looking at all-in-one solutions in addition to strategies to help in 2021. Welcome to day 13 of 21 Days of Productivity in 2021.

      Setting appointments with other people is difficult. Most of the time, we guess at a date and time and then start the “is this time bad for you? No, that time is bad for me, how about…” dance. It is easier with co-workers since you can see each others’ calendars. You just have to find that magic spot that is good for almost everyone who needs to be on the call. However, for freelancers managing personal calendars, the dance is a routine part of setting up calls and meetings.

    • Web Browsers

      • Chromium

        • This is why Leading Linux Distros going to remove Chromium from their Official Repositories

          Jochen Eisinger from Google team mentioned in a discussion thread that they will be banning sync support system of Chromium. This lead to lot of frustration in the Linux Dev community & rage against googles sudden decision.
          This Decision can kill small browser projects & lead the web to single browser monopoly i.e. Google Chrome!

          As a result of the googles decision multiple distros are strictly considering removal of Chromium from their official repositories. Leading distros like Arch Linux, Fedora, Debian, Slackware & OpenSUSE have stated that if the sync support goes down from google they will definitely remove chromium from their official repositories.

        • Chromium 88 removes Flash support [Ed: But DRM added]

          I uploaded a set of chromium packages to my repository today. Chromium 88.0.4324.96 sources were released two days ago.

          The release notes on the Google Chrome Releases Blog mention 36 security fixes with at least one being tagged as “critical” but the article does not mention that Flash support has been entirely removed from Chromium now.

          Adobe’s Flash was already actively being blocked for a long time and you had to consciously enable Flash content on web pages, but after Adobe discontinued Flash on 1st of January 2021 it was only a matter of time before support in web browsers would be removed as well.

          Let’s also briefly revisit the topic of my previous post – Google will remove access to Chrome Sync for all community builds of the open source variant of their Chrome browser: Chromium… thereby crippling it as far as I am concerned.

        • Chrome 89 Preparing To Ship With AV1 Encoder For WebRTC Usage [Ed: Massive patent trap]

          Now that Chrome 88 released, attention is turning to Chrome 89 of which an interesting technical change is the enabling of AV1 encode support within the web browser.

          Going back to 2018 there’s been AV1 decode support within the browser when wanting to enjoy content encoded in this royalty-free, modern codec. But now for Chrome 89 is coming AV1 encode support.

          AV1 encode support is being added for the WebRTC use-case for real-time conferencing. Web applications like WebEx, Meet, and Duo (among others) already support using AV1 for better compression efficiency, improved low-bandwidth handling, and greater screen sharing efficiency. While hardware-based AV1 encoding isn’t yet common, Chrome Linux/macOS/Windows desktop builds are adding the ability to use CPU-based AV1 encoding.

    • Productivity Software/LibreOffice/Calligra

      • Built-in “Xray” like UNO object inspector – Part 1

        When developing macros and extensions in LibreOffice it is very useful to have an object inspector. With that tool you inspect the object tree and the methods, properties and interfaces of individual objects to understand its structure. There are quite some different object inspectors available for LibreOffice as extension. Probably the best known is called “XrayTool”, but there were also others like MRI, which was build for a similar purpose and various other more simple object inspectors (for example one is provided as an code example in ODK).

        As a tool like this is very valuable it makes sense that it would be provided out-of-the-box by LibreOffice without the need for the user to get it separately. Also the user could even be unaware the such a tool exists. For this reasons The Document Foundation (TDF) put up a tender to create a built-in Xray like UNO object inspector, which was awarded to Collabora and we are now in the process of implementing it.

    • Programming/Development

      • The 10 most popular programming languages, according to Microsoft-owned GitHub [Ed: Why do some sites still reinforce the bogus idea that only projects that Microsoft controls using an oppressive and proprietary monopoly count or exist?]
      • Carlos Garnacho: Threaded input adventures

        Mutter wasn’t always a self-contained compositor toolkit, in the past it used to rely on Clutter and Cogl libraries for all the benefits usually brought by toolkits: Being able to draw things on screen, and being able to receive input.

        In the rise of Wayland, that reliance on an external toolkit drove many of the design decisions around input management, usually involving adding support in the toolkit, and the necessary hooks so Mutter could use or modify the behavior. It was unavoidable that both sides were involved.

        Later on, Mutter merged its own copies of Clutter and Cogl, but the API barrier stayed essentially the same at first. Slowly over time, and still ongoing, we’ve been refactoring Mutter so all the code that talks to the underlying layers of your OS lives together in src/backends, taking this code away from Clutter and Cogl.

      • Partially-Formed @ Meeting C++ 2021 talk is now online

        We will also show how developers that feel uneasy about the partially-formed state can avoid them at little to no cost, neither in code readability, nor performance, and use these examples to propose a new (or old) paradigm for API design: safe and unsafe functions (in the Sean Parent sense).

      • How to implement a DevOps toolchain

        Organizations from all industries and of all sizes strive to deliver quality software solutions faster. This guarantees not only their survival but also success in the global marketplace. DevOps can help them chart an optimal course.

        DevOps is a system where different processes are supported by tools that work in a connected chain to deliver projects on time and at a lower cost.

      • Python

        • How to Create a Database in MongoDB Using Python

          There’s no doubt that Python is a powerful—and popular—programming language capable of handling any project we throw its way. It is very flexible and can adjust to suit various development environments like penetration testing to web development and machine learning.
          When coupled to large applications such as those that require databases, Python adds more functionality and can be hard to work with, especially for beginners.

          Python knows this add provides us with better ways to add databases to our projects without compromising our workflow using a simple and intuitive NoSQL database. Using Python and a popular NoSQL database, MongoDB, development becomes more comfortable and, all in all, fun.

          This article will go over various MongoDB database concepts to give you a firm understanding of what it entails. After that, we will cover how to install MongoDB on Linux and show you how to use Python to interact with MongoDB.

        • Python Script to Monitor Network Connection

          The need to have our devices always connected to the internet is becoming more of a basic need than an added privilege.

          Having applications and devices that need to log, send, and receive data to the outside world is critical. Thus, having a tool that allows you to monitor when your network goes down can help you troubleshoot the network or stop the applications before sending a bunch of log errors.

          In today’s tutorial, we will build a simple network monitor that continually monitors your internet connectivity by sending ping requests to an external resource. The script we shall create shall also keep logs of when the internet is down and the duration of the downtime:

        • How to Build a Web Traffic Monitor with Python, Flask, SQLite, and Pusher

          If you have a web application running out there on the internet, you will need to know where your visitors are coming from, the systems they’re using, and other such things.
          Although you can use services such as Google Analytics, Monster Insights, etc., it’s more fun to build a monitoring system using Python, SQL database, and Pusher for real-time data updates.

          In today’s tutorial, we’ll go over how to create such a tool using Python, Flask, and Pusher. The tutorial is a highly-customized spin-off from a tutorial published on Pusher’s official page.

        • Pyston 2.1 Released With Striving For High Performance Python

          Pyston started out as a fork of CPython and was very promising during its early days as a Dropbox project for delivering on high performance Python. Its performance was great but in 2017 Dropbox stopped supporting it. Then at the end of 2020, Pyston reappeared and Pyston 2.0 promoted ~20% faster performance than Python 3.8. Pyston 2.x was developed by many of the original developers from Dropbox now out working on their own firm.

          Fast forward to now, Pyston 2.1 was released on Friday. Pyston 2.1 delivers bug fixes and small improvements over Pyston 2.0 that shipped at the end of October. There is a generic Pyston 2.1 binary as well as Ubuntu 16.04/18.04/20.04 builds.

      • Java

  • Leftovers

    • Information Paradox

      Stephen Hawking’s final co-authored paper (Black Hole Entropy and Soft Hair) continues to challenge us here. Hawking and black holes have gone way back. Einstein’s general relativity had three factors for black holes. They were mass, charge and spin. Hawking added a fourth factor called temperature. Because heat is lost into space the fate of the black hole would be to lose its physical information and no longer be observable. Hence the information paradox was born.

      However Hawking’s final paper makes some progress on the paradox. A black hole’s entropy can be measured in a non random way by the photons around it. These photons on the black hole’s border (event horizon) are called soft hair. The problem that remains is a question of how much of the black hole’s entropy is measured in the soft hair. We know the soft hair may change when an object enters a black hole (which changes the black hole’s heat which changes its entropy). But what if this doesn’t have all its measurements?

    • The Esports Industry Grew; Now It’s Time For It To Grow Up

      As we’ve discussed for some time, the esports industry has been the subject of unprecedented growth in competitive sports. This growth trend began nearly a decade ago, but its pace steadily increased and was then supercharged by the COVID-19 pandemic. The industry is now looking back at a year when it nearly doubled in size, basking in its new found cultural position. So, the esports industry has grown. Now it’s time for it to grow up.

    • Post-Covid, We Should Take a Leaf Out of Cuba’s Book and Abolish Professional Sports

      In the corporate media, this huge monetary loss will, of course, be mourned as part of the devastating economic fallout of the Covid pandemic. But the fact that something as trivial as spectator sports can become such a huge part of the economy and have so many lives and jobs tied to its fate is something that will be inevitably glossed over. As we approach the one-year anniversary of the Covid outbreak, we should reflect on this reality and on whether the whole concept of professional sports is something worth keeping in the post-Covid era at all. Perhaps Cuba’s decision to abolish professional sports provides an example that other countries should follow.

      In 1961, two years after the triumph of the Cuban Revolution, Fidel Castro declared an end to professional sport on the island. But banning professional sport was not a move against sport. In fact, it was the opposite. Castro wanted to make sport not something that people simply watched as passive spectators, but something that people participated in themselves. Rather than existing as a spectacle, sport would be participatory and community based. A few years after the abolition of professional sport, Castro commented, ““Anybody who truly loves sport, and feels sport, has to prefer this sport to professional sport by a thousand times.”

    • Do You Remember Cuba’s Dedication to Angola?

      Fed up with foreign wars, Portuguese officers overthrew Prime Minister Marcello Caetano on April 25, 1974. Many former colonies had the opportunity to define their own future.

      Angola had been the richest of Portuguese colonies, with major production in coffee, diamonds, iron ore and oil. Of the former colonies, it had the largest white population, which numbered 320,000 of about 6.4 million. When 90% of its white population fled in 1974, Angola lost most of its skilled labor.

    • Inaugural Music

      A few years on, Longfellow’s Transcendental Club colleague Henry David Thoreau struck a more quavering, conditional note: “In a world of peace and love music would be the universal language.”

      Music has the power to bring people together but also to divide and destroy: the fife, drum, and bugle have been used to organize troops from Byzantium to Little Big Horn; the bass drum of the Turkish Janissary band was meant to fill the enemy with terror; the electric guitar, boom box, stacked speakers have been deployed to infuriate fogeys and crush cultists from Woodstock to Waco, and to wreck prisoners from Guantanamo Bay to Abu Ghraib.

    • The Time I Got Coffee With Hollywood Satanists

      It’s worth starting with the original Satanic panic of the 1980s. I recommend the account relayed in the podcast “You’re Wrong About.”

      The co-host Sarah Marshall is writing a book on the Satanic panic and she really knows the topic inside and out. It’s not too different from today: adults became hysterical over alleged sexual abuse of children by a Satanic cult that didn’t exist. It never existed.

    • Roaming Charges: New Days, Old Ways

      + In Classical Athens, tyrants (Themistocles, Cimon, Alcibiades) were exiled (or ostracized) and the seditious philosophers, like Socrates, put to death. In Rome and Florence, the dictators tended to get the knife (to assure they’d never return to power) and the poets and philosophers were sent into rocky exile (Ovid and later Dante, himself). Here our deposed autocrats are trundled off under the protection of a small contingent of Praetorian Guards to build their libraries, write their self-justifying books and await national rehabilitation after someone even worse than them assumes office.

      + So, our long national nightmare is over. After this commercial break, the new national nightmare begins.

    • Nobody — And We Mean Nobody — Was Consistently Great Like Hank Aaron

      Throughout it all, one of the most important factors in Aaron’s career was his consistent greatness. Great players are often consistently great, of course … but nobody in the history of the game is really in the same neighborhood as Aaron in this regard.

      How do you get to 755 home runs without ever cracking 50 in a season? Unrelenting consistency. Aaron hit 20 or more home runs in a season 20 times (!!), the most of any player in MLB history. He also hit at least 24 home runs every single season from 1955 (age 21) to 1973 (age 39) — a streak of 19 consecutive years. No other player in history has done that for more than 15 straight years. (Ruth and Barry Bonds, who eventually broke Aaron’s all-time record, both did it exactly that many times in a row.)

    • GameStop stock halts trading after Reddit drama

      Trading in stock of video game retailer GameStop (GME) was halted briefly Friday, as it soared more than 70 percent, due partly to the enthusiastic support of a group of Reddit day traders.

      The stock is up more than 250 percent year to date, rising sharply last week after GameStop announced Chewy CEO Ryan Cohen was joining its board, CNBC reported. Short-seller Citron Research predicted the price would drop, but members of the Reddit board r/wallstreetbets, who had been generating interest in the stock, criticized Citron on the Reddit message board and continued praising the stock on social media.

    • Education

      • Teachers Union Berated Trump for Reopening Schools, Now It’s Praising Biden For Doing the Same

        The same teachers’ organization that roundly condemned Donald Trump’s attempts to prematurely reopen schools are now applauding Biden’s decision to do the same, even as the coronavirus pandemic reaches new levels.

      • Can universities manufacture a post-industrial future for the Midwest?

        If you set any store by university rankings, the Midwest certainly lines up impressively, with 14 universities inside the top 150 of the Times Higher Education World University Rankings. Many of those are state universities and, in particular, land-grant universities, founded in the 19th century with a particular mission for economic development. And these universities already have huge economic impact. The Midwest is no “monolith of struggling factory towns”, stresses Austin. “The big university towns are thriving…in a global economy. From Madison to Iowa City…they are creating new businesses and jobs, growing new sectors.”

        A 2019 report from the Brookings Institution identified potential “growth centres” (based on metrics such as innovation jobs growth, numbers of patents filed and proportion of the population with degrees) across the US “heartland”, which could be developed through extra federal research investment. Number one on the list was Madison, home to the University of Wisconsin-Madison, followed by Minneapolis-St Paul, home to the University of Minnesota. The report calls on the federal government to run a contest to select between eight and 10 such centres for funding.

    • Hardware

      • Nehalem Lead Architect Returns to Intel, Inspired by New CEO

        In a sign that Intel’s efforts to rebuild its engineering corps might be swift under the new incoming CEO, Glenn Hinton, the lead architect of Intel’s Nehalem processors and several other programs, announced that he is returning to the company after a three-year retirement. In a LinkedIn post announcing his decision, Hinton cited the return of Pat Gelsinger, Intel’s new CEO, as a prime motivator for rejoining the company.

      • The struggle over chips enters a new phase

        Contrast this effervescence with the consolidation in chipmaking. A gruelling 60-year struggle for supremacy is nearing its end. Moore’s law, which holds that the cost of computer power will fall by half every 18 months to two years, is beginning to fail. Each generation of chips is technically harder to make than the last and, owing to the surging cost of building factories, the stakes have got bigger. The number of manufacturers at the industry’s cutting-edge has fallen from over 25 in 2000 to three.

        The most famous of that trio, Intel, is in trouble. It has fired its boss, an admission that it has fallen behind. It may retreat from making the most advanced chips, known as the three-nanometre generation, and outsource more production, like almost everyone else. That would leave two firms with the stomach for it: Samsung in South Korea and TSMC in Taiwan. TSMC has just announced one of the largest investment budgets of any private firm on the planet. An array of corporate A-listers from Apple and Amazon to Toyota and Tesla rely on this duo of chipmakers.

      • Intel floats possibility of licensing deals but would TSMC and Samsung be interested?

        Intel Corp executives have raised the possibility of licensing chipmaking technology from outside firms, a move that could see it exchanging manufacturing secrets with rival Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co Ltd (TSMC) or Samsung Electronics Co Ltd.

        Intel is one of the few remaining semiconductor firms that both designs and manufactures its own chips, but the business model has come into question in recent years as the company lost its manufacturing lead to the Taiwanese and Korean companies.

        One option urged by some investors would be to outsource manufacturing. The company said, however, on Thursday that while it plans to increase its use of outside factories, the majority of its 2023 products would be made internally.

    • Health/Nutrition

      • As Pandemic Rips Through Indian Country, Indigenous Communities Work to Save Elders & Languages

        We look at the fight to save tribal elders and Native language speakers as the pandemic rips through Indian Country, with Indigenous communities facing woefully inadequate healthcare, lack of governmental support, and the living legacy of centuries of colonialism. Native Americans have died from COVID-19 at twice the rate of white people across the U.S. To combat this crisis, the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe has prioritized elders who speak the Dakota and Lakota languages to receive vaccines. “Knowing that there were a lot of elders who were at really, really high risk, this was a concern from the very beginning,” says Jodi Archambault, a citizen of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and the former special assistant to President Barack Obama on Native American affairs. The parents of Nola Taken Alive, a member of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribal Council, both recently died of COVID-19. “My parents were very humble people,” she says. “They played a very important role not only in my siblings’ and our family’s lives, but also to the entire community of Standing Rock.” We also speak with Alex White Plume, a former vice president and president of the Oglala Sioux Tribe of the Pine Ridge Reservation who is a Lakota interpreter.

      • As Death Toll Tops 410,000, Biden Pushes “Wartime Effort” to Fight COVID. But Could More Be Done?

        On his first full day in office, President Joe Biden unveiled a 198-page national plan to tackle the coronavirus pandemic as the U.S. death toll tops 410,000. He signed 10 executive orders to create a new national COVID-19 testing board, to help schools reopen, to mandate international travelers to quarantine upon arrival, and to require masks on many forms of interstate transportation. Biden also invoked the Defense Production Act to increase COVID-19 testing and the production of vaccine supplies, saying a wartime effort is needed to combat the virus. “It just feels like the federal government is back, the federal government is going to play a constructive and helpful role in this pandemic and the pandemic response. And that’s critical,” says Dr. Ashish Jha, dean of the Brown University School of Public Health. “It’s science-driven stuff that I wish we had had a year ago.” Dr. Jha also discusses his proposal to delay giving out second shots of coronavirus vaccines until there is more supply, as well as how new variants of the coronavirus impact the efficacy of existing vaccines.

      • ‘Mask Up, America’: Biden Signs Pandemic Mandates for Traveling and Federal Properties

        “The experts say that by wearing a mask from now until April, we’d save more than 50,000 lives,” the president asserted. 

      • Farmers’ Protests Reflect Existential Crisis of Indian Agriculture

        Given that India is still an agrarian-based society, renowned journalist P Sainath says what is taking place can be described as a crisis of civilisation proportions and can be explained in just five words: hijack of agriculture by corporations. He notes the process by which it is being done in five words too: predatory commercialisation of the countryside. And another five words to describe the outcome: biggest displacement in our history.

        In late November 2018, a charter was released by the All India Kisan Sangharsh Coordination Committee (an umbrella group of around 250 farmers’ organisations) to coincide with the massive, well-publicised farmers’ march that was then taking place in Delhi.

      • Biden Orders on Food Aid Heralded as ‘Most Significant Anti-Hunger Actions in Modern Times’

        The expected executive action comes as “families are struggling with food insecurity like never before.”

      • Several States Aren’t Counting How Many Vaccine Shots Go to Waste
      • Fauci Says Working Under Biden Is “Liberating” – He Can Speak Candidly on COVID
      • COVID vs. World War II

        Let us compare the sacrifices in lives paid by the American people during WWII, and during YEAR ONE of COVID-19.

        WWII (for the U.S.A.): 7 December 1941 to 15 August 1945: 1347 days, (3 years, 8 months, 1 week, 1 day).

      • ‘Deeply Alarming’: AstraZeneca Charging South Africa More Than Double What Europeans Pay for Covid-19 Vaccine

        “This is the problem when you have essential medicines in the hands of big business, with almost no transparency as to pricing.”

      • Biden Pushes “Wartime Effort” to Fight COVID as US Death Toll Tops 410,000
      • The Unfinished Business of Flint’s Water Crisis

        When I first heard E. Yvonne Lewis tell the story, it was a hot July day in downtown Flint, Michigan. We and about 70 others had gathered in the high-ceilinged ballroom of the Northbank Center, just west of the river, where the Michigan Civil Rights Commission was conducting its 2016 hearings on how this Great Lakes city learned that its own water was a threat.

        Lewis, a community health worker and mother of three, testified that she kept a Crock-Pot in her bathroom. To take a bath, she filled the cauldron with bottled water, waited for it to heat, poured it into her bathtub, then repeated this process until she had enough to wash.

      • Reports of Racial Disparities in Covid Vaccines Distort Science

        Science reporting frequently fails to meaningfully communicate research results, especially when it comes to medical research. Out of context numbers and percentages only create public misunderstanding of the scientific results.

      • CCDH report shows that antivaxxers coordinate COVID-19 vaccine fear mongering

        Earlier this week, I wrote about how an investigation by the Center for Countering Digital Hate (CCDH) had revealed how antivaccine groups, including the most prominent ones like Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.’s Children’s Health Defense and Barbara Loe Fisher’s National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC), had received hundreds of thousands of dollars from the federal government through the Paycheck Protection Program. It turns out that that investigation by the Center was not its only one. Thanks to Scott Gavura, I learned that the CCDH also investigated a meeting by antivaxxers held virtually in October with the express purpose of developing strategies, a playbook if you will, to sow fear, uncertainty, and doubt about the COVID-19 vaccines whose release through Emergency Use Authorization was imminent. In the US, those were primarily the vaccines by Moderna and Pfizer/BioNTech, both of which were RNA-based vaccines. The result is a report by the CCDH called The Anti-Vaxx Playbook. The meeting was, unsurprisingly, hosted by the NVIC.

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Security

          • Oh, the Irony! Chrome is Blocking Security Tool Nmap Downloads Considering it a Security Threat

            Nmap is a popular open-source tool created by Gordon Lyon used by security experts and network admins to analyze the network, find exploits, and keep it secure.

            However, it seems that for a day at least, Google Chrome blocked all Nmap downloads using its Safe Browsing service by labelling it as a threat.

            Even though this has been fixed quickly. For many visitors trying to download the tool, this must have been confusing. A software that’s more than a decade old is now suddenly considered as a threat?

          • Logging as a service isn’t SIEM — so what is it?

            Log management software is often confused or conflated with security information event management (SIEM) software. Both monitor and analyze system and application data, so vendors often blur the lines between the two categories, with many SIEM products including a log management module. Conversely, some log management vendors also have SIEM offerings that work with or supplement their logging products.

            The primary distinction between log management and SIEM is focus. SIEM tools prioritize data and metrics relevant to security, not the totality of an environment’s system, user and application log output. Log management software and services provide a scalable, holistic platform to collect, manage, archive and analyze all of an IT environment’s log output — on premises and in the cloud.

          • Laptops given to British schools came preloaded with malware and talked to Russia when booted [iophk: Windows TCO]

            These devices have shipped over the past three to four weeks, though it is unclear how many of them are infected. One source at a school told The Register that the machines in question seemed to have been manufactured in late 2019 and appeared to have had their DfE-specified software installed last year.

          • Democrats seek answers on impact of Russian cyberattack on Justice Department, Courts [iophk: Windows TCO]

            The senators’ concerns come weeks after both the Justice Department and the U.S. Courts reported that they had been among the federal agencies compromised by the Russian attack on SolarWinds, which was uncovered in December but had been ongoing for more than a year.

            In a statement earlier this month, a DOJ spokesperson said around 3 percent of the agency’s employee email accounts had been “potentially accessed” as part of the breach, but that there was “no indication that any classified systems were accessed.” DOJ has more than 100,000 employees.

            The federal judiciary confirmed it was breached the same week as DOJ, noting in a statement that the AO’s Case Management/Electronic Files system had suffered an “apparent compromise,” with new procedures immediately put in place to file sensitive court documents.

          • Biden inherited one of the worst [cracks] in history. How will his administration respond?

            But that’s the easy part. The SolarWinds [attack] — named for the Texas software company that Russia [cracked] in order to gain access to tens of thousands of its customers, many of them American businesses and federal agencies — ran undetected for at least nine months, siphoning off private information before it was discovered in December.

            At least five federal agencies have admitted they were affected. Several others have so far refused to comment. Few private companies have admitted to being victims, but experts say the working assumption is the number is in the hundreds.

            That’s left cybersecurity experts with the labor-intensive task of combing through sensitive networks.

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • Rights Advocates Alarmed by US Spy Agency’s Purchase of Warrantless Phone Location Data

              “Congress must end this lawless practice and require the government to get a warrant for our location data, regardless of its source.”

            • Amazon Ring App Found To Be (Again) Exposing User Locations, Home Addresses

              While Amazon Ring and other doorbells certainly deliver a certain convenience, they’ve created no shortage of entirely new problems. Problems that could have been avoided with just a bit of foresight and ethical behavior. First comes the fact they’re being integrated into our already accountability-optional law enforcement and intelligence apparatus. Then, like the rest of the “let’s connect everything to the internet but do a shit job on basic security and privacy because it costs money” IOT sector, they can’t be bothered to get the fundamentals right when it comes to consumer security.

            • Appeals Court Rejects Clearview’s Attempt To Dodge A State Lawsuit By Trying To Make It A Federal Case

              Clearview’s attempt to dodge a potential class-action lawsuit filed against it in Illinois has just been booted back to the Illinois court system by the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals.

            • Do Safer Alternatives To WhatsApp Exist?

              There’s no such thing as absolute privacy if you own a smartphone, but there is such a thing as relative privacy. Because WhatsApp offers end-to-end message encryption, its millions of users assume that it’s the most secure and private way to speak to their friends. A significant number of them are no longer as sure about that as they used to be.

              WhatsApp belongs to Facebook. That fact isn’t immediately obvious as it hasn’t been mentioned anywhere on the app in the past, but those who didn’t know that were suddenly informed of it right at the start of the year when WhatsApp issued new privacy guidelines and informed users in the United States of America that it’s about to start sharing some data with Facebook. That didn’t go down well with a significant chunk of the app’s users, who responded by ditching WhatsApp and moving to alternatives like Signal and Telegram. They believe their private information is safer there, but are they right?

            • Intelligence agency gathers US smartphone location data without warrants, memo says

              DIA analysts have searched American location data five times in the past 2 1/2 years, according to the document released Friday by Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee.

              The Oregon Democrat had asked the agency whether it was interpreting the 2018 Supreme Court decision in Carpenter v. United States to mean that obtaining data from a third-party broker rather than a phone company does not require a warrant.

            • [Old] “Twitter and the Other Platforms Are Bad, Facebook Is Worse”

              DER SPIEGEL: Mr. Roubini, in summer 2020, you said in DER SPIEGEL that Trump would lose the election and call his supporters to arms. Both have happened. What’s next for the U.S.?

              Roubini: There will be more armed uprisings, especially by white nationalists, if only to provoke the left. Russia and China will launch cyberattacks against the US and spread misinformation. That will shape the next four years. In the short term, though, something else worries me?

            • How to see what Facebook knows about you, and download your data

              Facebook offers granular options on what type of data you’d like, the format and quality of your download, and the date range for the data you want. By default, the Download Your Information page is configured to give you a massive file of everything you’ve ever done on the social network.

              It takes a while for Facebook to create the archive. The time probably increases depending on your activity level and how long your account has been active. My 10-year-old account took roughly 15 minutes to compile and wound up being a large 1.23GB file, though I rarely upload pictures to the service.

            • Google search on mobile is getting a redesign

              Google is redesigning how search results look on mobile, the company announced in a blog on Friday. “We wanted to take a step back to simplify a bit so people could find what they’re looking for faster and more easily,” Aileen Cheng, who led the redesign, said in the blog.

              The redesign will have larger and bolder text that’s intended to be easier to scan quickly, and you’ll see more of Google’s font in results. Search results will also take up more of the width of your screen, thanks in part to reduced shadows. Google also says the redesign will use color “more intentionally” to help highlight important information without being distracting.

            • US Defense Intelligence Agency admits to buying citizens’ location data

              An intelligence agency has just confirmed that the US government does indeed buy location data collected by its citizens’ smartphones. In a memo sent to Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) and obtained by The New York Times, the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) admitted that it buys location data from brokers — and that the data isn’t separated by whether a person lives in the US or outside of it.

              Data brokers are companies that, as the name implies, collect and sell people’s information. The companies collect people’s location information (and much more) by paying app makers and websites for it. Once the broker has the information, they can aggregate it and sell it to whoever’s willing to pay for it — including the US government.

            • Intelligence Analysts Use U.S. Smartphone Location Data Without Warrants, Memo Says

              Defense Intelligence Agency analysts have searched for the movements of Americans within a commercial database in five investigations over the past two and a half years, agency officials disclosed in a memo they wrote for Senator Ron Wyden, Democrat of Oregon.

              The disclosure sheds light on an emerging loophole in privacy law during the digital age: In a landmark 2018 ruling known as the Carpenter decision, the Supreme Court held that the Constitution requires the government to obtain a warrant to compel phone companies to turn over location data about their customers. But the government can instead buy similar data from a broker — and does not believe it needs a warrant to do so.

    • Defence/Aggression

      • Opinion | ‘I Never Thought I’d Live to See This Day’: The Beginning of the End for Nuclear Weapons

        Few antiwar activists ever thought they’d see nuclear weapons banned, but thanks to dedicated organizing, a historic UN treaty goes into effect today.

      • The Persecution of Hazaras

        As explained below, atrocities against the Hazaras of Khorasan, comprised of killings, ethnic cleansing, land confiscation, enslavement, underdevelopment, and forced exile, are not new. The Hazaras have been suffering persecution for centuries. Presently, there are more than 8 million Hazaras, but only half of them live in Afghanistan. To escape persecution, the other half migrated to other countries, including Pakistan, Iran, Europe, and Australia. In Pakistan and Iran, the Hazaras face degrading treatment as a refugee ethnic group while Daesh and Taliban slaughter them in Quetta and other parts of Baluchistan, Pakistan.

        Almost always, the persecutors rely on perception (caricature) rather than reality. Sometimes perception is mightier than reality, and sometimes there is no reality but perception. Ethnic groups perceived as outsiders within a country are rarely trusted and frequently accused of being traitors in times of war. (The internment of the Japanese Americans during World War II was an act of perception, not reality.) There has been a persistent perception in Afghanistan that the Hazaras are not loyal to the nation, and that they facilitate the enemies. Accordingly, this article focuses on how the rulers of Afghanistan and the Pashtuns, the largest tribe, perceive and persecute the Hazaras.

      • Despite Absence of Nuke-Armed States, World Celebrates Arrival of Global Treaty Banning Nuclear Weapons

        “Today we reach a major milestone on the road to a more peaceful and secure world, free from the ultimate menace of nuclear war.”

      • Opinion | A Day of Celebration: The Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW) Enters Into Force

        The path is before us. We must act now, to protect current and future generations—and all we hold dear. 

      • Homegrown Fascists

        Four days after the pandemonium at the capitol, Rep. James Clyburn told reporters that the House would wait until 100 days into a Biden administration to send impeachment to the senate. This was a lousy idea. By then, the Republicans would all be in opposition, with memories of being terrorized by a murderous mob no longer fresh. President-elect Biden apparently recognized this and asked Sen. Mitch McConnell to put an impeachment trial on a parallel track with approval of his cabinet.

        This shows understanding that the crime, the ransacking of the capitol, demands an urgent response, in part because of its uniqueness. Trump’s storm troopers trampled what’s left of democracy in the U.S., and he incited them. It was planned, organized over social media, and the intent was to lynch Pence, as the rioters can be heard chanting on video, and presumably to manhandle or kill as much of the congressional leadership as they could capture, and also, to prevent the legitimate confirmation of Biden’s electoral win. Ideally Pence would have invoked the twenty-fifth amendment. He didn’t. He still cowers in Trump’s long fascist shadow. But if the House dilly dallies over sending impeachment to the senate and if the senate fails to convict, congress too will be submerged in that shadow. Worse, if the justice department doesn’t pursue right-wing terrorist militias and fascists embedded in police departments, that shadow will loom over the entire country.

      • In new statement from prison, Alexey Navalny says he doesn’t plan to take his own life

        Russian opposition figure Alexey Navalny has released a new statement from Moscow’s Matrosskaya Tishina remand prison, where has been in custody since January 18. 

      • Moscow court fines Lyubov Sobol 250,000 rubles for inciting protests in support of Navalny

        On Friday, January 22, a Moscow Court fined anti-corruption activist Lyubov Sobol 250,000 rubles (about $3,340) for inciting protests in support of jailed opposition figure Alexey Navalny.

      • ‘Nobody’s afraid anymore’ How planned protests against the jailing of Alexey Navalny hijacked Russian TikTok, and what it means for expected turnout on Saturday

        Almost a week ago, Alexey Navalny flew home to Russia, surrounded by a phalanx of journalists. Large crowds of cheering supporters awaited him at the airport, but his most important welcome party was a group of police officers who promptly arrested him after his plane landed. Since Monday, January 18, Navalny’s home has been an isolation cell at Moscow’s Matrosskaya Tishina prison. Meanwhile, upcoming protests in support of Navalny, planned for tomorrow, January 23, have become one of the main trending topics on TikTok in Russia. Videos about Navalny have been viewed more than 200 million times, and Russia’s federal censor has ordered TikTok to remove “content calling for minors using the social network to participate in illegal mass protest events.” Meduza looks at how content creators are using the protests to gain followers, and whether TikTok can serve as an effective protest tool in Russia.

      • ‘Freedom for Navalny!’ The main events leading up to this Saturday’s opposition protests, in brief

        Within 24 hours of returning to Russia, opposition figure Alexey Navalny was remanded in custody for 30 days. His team then announced plans to hold rallies opposing his detention on January 23 and released an investigation about President Vladimir Putin’s “palace” on the Black Sea. The hashtag “Freedom for Navalny” (#свободунавальному) started trending on Russian TikTok. Thousands of suspicious accounts began following Navalny’s Anti-Corruption Foundation and his local team offices on Instagram (these bot attacks appeared to be aimed at getting them blocked from the platform). The Russian Attorney General’s Office ordered the state censorship agency (Roskomnadzor) to block websites containing calls to attend unauthorized rallies in support of Navalny. Roskomnadzor threatened social networks with fines up to 4 million rubles (more than $50,000) for distributing information aimed at inciting minors to attend illegal protests. The Russian Education Ministry asked parents to keep their children from attending rallies. Schools in the far-eastern Zabaykalsky Krai scheduled Russian language assessments for all grade 7–11 students on January 23, while the University of Ufa declared that Saturday a school day with mandatory attendance for all students and staff. Police officials in Moscow issued a general warning about the punishments for taking part in or inciting the upcoming rallies. Before that, law enforcement officers made rounds to the homes of activists and journalists across the country to warn them against participating in the protests. Then, they began arresting and jailing Navalny’s closest associates (his press secretary Kira Yarmysh was sentenced to nine days administrative arrest). Several volunteers and coordinators from Team Navalny’s regional offices were fined or even jailed for up to three days over rallies that haven’t happened yet. The authorities in Tatarstan launched a criminal case over alleged “calls for riots.” In Balashikha (a city on the outskirts of Moscow), police questioned a ninth-grade girl for four hours over a protest video she posted on TikTok. Meanwhile, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov assured the press that Putin isn’t afraid of Navalny. 

      • Opinion | Battle Lines Drawn on Ending Yemen War

        The Biden Administration has a chance to undo a disastrous label and open the door for peace.

      • Yemen Crisis Linked to Weapons Maker Raytheon’s Influence on US Foreign Policy
      • Fearing the Palestinian Narrative: Why Israel Banned ‘Jenin Jenin’

        The case, as presented by Israeli and other media, seemed to deal with typical legal matters such as defamation of character and so on. To those familiar with the massive clash of narratives which emanated from that singular event, known to Palestinians as the ‘Jenin Massacre’, the Israeli court verdict is not only political but historical and intellectual, as well.

        Bakri, a native Palestinian born in the village of Bi’ina, near the Palestinian city of Akka, now located in Israel, has been paraded repeatedly in Israeli courts and censured heavily in Israeli mainstream media simply because he dared challenge the official discourse on the violent events which transpired in the Jenin refugee camp nearly two decades ago.

      • The Lies that Bind

        He was excoriated. Mearsheimer’s thesis, outlined in a speech at Rhode Island’s Brown University, caused an immediate furore in which varied pro-Israeli organizations decried his analysis and cast aspersions on his motivations. The speech followed a book the professor had co-authored with fellow scholar Stephen Walt. Published in 2007, The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy clearly set out the degree to which the State Department sang from Israel’s song sheet. A piece based on the book was rejected by The Atlantic, and was in the end published in the London Review of Books. The book itself argued that ongoing United States policies towards Israel, heavily skewed in favour of the Jewish settlers, are counterproductive to Israel and the U.S. both. Mearsheimer and Walt, realist-school international relations academics, recognized the grave implications of the population dynamics in Israel. In fact, the Zionist movement has always had a singular aim: replacing Arabs with Jews in Palestine. After all, doing so in Uganda, as the British proposed at one point, was not going to cut the mustard.


        Writing about Palestine and the Eastern Mediterranean in general is a fraught business. Mearsheimer and his co-author were of sufficient academic stature to weather the storm of criticism heaped on what was in fact a well-argued and deeply researched thesis. Yet the storm had its usual and intended effect in discouraging public debate about what were in fact quite simple and even empirically quantifiable facts.

        More than a decade later, we have this extraordinary statement from Hagain El-Ad, director of the independent, non-partisan Israeli rights organization B’Tselem: ‘Israel is not a democracy that has a temporary occupation attached to it. It is one regime between the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea, and we must look at the full picture and see it for what it is: apartheid.’ Mearsheimer and Walt were not far off the mark.

        There is nothing anti-Semitic about criticizing the policies of Israel and its founders. Commentary and analysis should be received as intended, as a contribution to dialectic. If it is not, too bad.

      • The Future of War, American-Style

        Yet that conflict was limited to a single Pacific archipelago. Biden inherits a global war — and burgeoning new Cold War — spanning four continents and a military miredin active operations in dozens of countries, combat in some 14 of them, and bombing in at least seven.  That sort of scope has been standard fare for American presidents for almost two decades now.  Still, while this country’s post-9/11 war presidents have more in common than their partisan divisions might suggest, distinctions do matter, especially at a time when the White House almost unilaterally drives foreign policy.

        So, what can we expect from commander-in-chief Biden?  In other words, what’s the forecast for U.S. service-members who have invested their lives and limbs in future conflict, as well as for the speculators in the military-industrial complex and anxious foreigners in the countries still engulfed in America’s war on terror who usually stand to lose it all?

      • Poison Soup
      • Army Denied Role of Michael Flynn’s Brother in Decisions After Capitol Breach
      • Capitol Offenses
      • Biden Must Reverse Pompeo’s ‘Terrorist’ Move Against Cuba

        On October 6, 1976, a Cuban airliner carrying 73 passengers was blown out of the sky off the coast of Barbados. All of the men, women, and children aboard were killed in what was, at the time, the most flagrant act of aviation-related terrorism ever committed in the Western Hemisphere.

      • Schumer Urged to Deny Committee Seats to Hawley, Cruz, and Other Republicans Who ‘Incited Deadly Insurrection’

        Republicans who attempted to overturn the 2020 election, said MoveOn, “have no place in the U.S. Senate and most certainly should not be rewarded for their deadly attacks on democracy.”

      • War is Not Innate to Humanity: A More Peaceful Future is Possible

        However, once war takes place, it tends to spread, explains historical anthropologist R. Brian Ferguson, who has spent more than 40 years researching the origins of war. Ferguson, a professor of anthropology at Rutgers University, notes that war is not the same thing as interpersonal violence or homicide. War implies organized, armed conflict and killing sanctioned by society and carried out by members of one group against members of another group. Ferguson argues that current evidence suggests that war was not always present but began as a result of societal changes—with evidence of war’s origins appearing at widely varying timestamps in different locations around the world. He estimates that the earliest signs of war appear between 10,000 B.C., or 12,000 years ago.

        “But in some areas of the world you don’t see any signs of war develop until much more recently,” he says, noting that in both the U.S. Southwest and Great Plains there is no evidence of war until around 2,000 years ago.

      • McConnell Is Obstructing to Save the Filibuster. Progressives Want It Abolished.
      • ‘Basically Trying to Overturn the Senate Election’: McConnell Delaying Democratic Takeover in Effort to Preserve Filibuster

        “McConnell is already abusing the filibuster to block the constitution of the new majority. Nuking the filibuster is the appropriate response.”

      • Venezuelan VP Delcy Rodriguez details new measures to break the US blockade
      • The Capitol Rioters Must Face Consequences

        No one in the United States has been treated with more unearned grace and deference over these past four years than Donald Trump’s supporters. Their anger is always justified, their failures someone else’s, and their accountability for their own actions nonexistent.

      • Making New friends: Meet an Iranian

        The United States and Iran have spent decades in a tumultuous relationship, including: US overthrowing their elected leader in 1953, Iranian revolution with American hostage-taking, sanctions, diplomatic breakthroughs and a nuclear treaty, US exiting the treaty, coupled with the start of yet more sanctions.

        President Biden hopes to re-enter the nuclear treaty with Iran, which was working well, according to all international arms inspection organizations.

      • Global Right-Wing Extremism Networks Are Growing. The U.S. Is Just Now Catching Up.

        During the past two years, U.S. counterterrorism officials held meetings with their European counterparts to discuss an emerging threat: right-wing terror groups becoming increasingly global in their reach.

        American neo-Nazis were traveling to train and fight with militias in the Ukraine. There were suspected links between U.S. extremists and the Russian Imperial Movement, a white supremacist group that was training foreigners in its St. Petersburg compounds. A gunman accused of killing 23 people at an El Paso Walmart in 2019 had denounced a “Hispanic invasion” and praised a white supremacist who killed 51 people at mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, and who had been inspired by violent American and Italian racists.

      • Veteran Celebrates Nuclear Ban Treaty

        The International Campaign for the Abolition of Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) was awarded the 2017 Nobel Peace Prize for its leadership in promoting this vital treaty, which prohibits the financing, development, possession, or transporting of nuclear weapons, as well as the use or threat to use nuclear weapons.

        None of the nine nuclear-armed nations have yet signed onto the Treaty. These nuclear powers are in violation of the 50-year-old Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, which requires them to negotiate in good faith to reduce and eventually eliminate all nuclear weapons. Instead, the U.S. and other nuclear powers are developing new generations of nuclear weapons, alarming many experts who believe the threat of nuclear war is greater than ever.

      • Worsening Islamist insurgency drives Mozambique humanitarian crisis

        More than half a million people have fled their homes due to an Islamist insurgency in northern Mozambique, and the violence and humanitarian crisis will worsen without international help, United Nations officials said on Wednesday.

        “If nothing is done soon, we won’t have only 535 000 displaced people. We won’t have only 2 000 people killed by the conflict, but tens of thousands,” said Valentin Tapsoba, regional director for the United Nations refugee agency (UNHCR).

        The displaced people were in a dire situation, with overcrowding, malnutrition and a lack of essentials including food and water, the officials said in an online news briefing.

      • Arizona’s major corporate political donors rethinking campaign contributions after Capitol riot
    • Environment

      • Opinion | Re-entering the Paris Climate Agreement Is Just Step One to Address the Climate Emergency: Frontline Women Must Lead the Way

        Global people’s movements and women leaders have been organizing for decades for climate justice, and community-led solutions.

      • How hemp can help to moderate the climate crisis

        Hemp, a plant grown centuries ago in England as a national duty, could help to restrict climate heating.

      • Chris Savage, Talia Buford & Peggy Case on Flint Water Crisis
      • Amanda Gorman’s Poem Rhymes With Biden’s Climate Agenda

        This article is published as part of Covering Climate Now, a global consortium of news outlets strengthening coverage of the climate story.

      • The Rich The Poor and Climate Change

        The disruption to weather cycles is caused by global warming (increases in average surface temperature) which results from a buildup of what are commonly called greenhouse gases (GHG). Carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4) and nitrous oxide (N2O), trap heat which would otherwise pass out of Earth’s atmosphere, resulting in a rise in average ground temperature. Burning fossil fuels (coal, natural gas and oil) is the primary source of emissions, as well as industrial animal agriculture, which is not only a major source of greenhouse gases, but is having a disastrous impact on the environment more broadly, including deforestation, and air and water pollution.

        With 28% of the total, China (population c.1.4 billion) is the world’s biggest producer of GHG emissions, however when measured per capita it ranks only 47th. China is also one of the world’s biggest investors in renewable energy, and plans to produce 35% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2030. It is the USA (population c.328 million) – the second largest overall polluter – that has the highest per capita emissions in the world, and by some margin. Collectively the top four emitters (China, USA, EU + UK and India) produced 55% of all GHG emissions in the last decade.

      • How the Weather Was

        To official Washington, snow was the near equivalent of an enemy invasion, and the realization that the most powerful city in the world could be counted on to undergo virtual paralysis for a considerable number of days each winter was an irony which wasn’t lost on us by the time we were of high school age. Inescapably, the all-pervasive business of government and the virulent Cold War atmosphere of those years of the 1950s — a subject of daily dinnertime discussion for many of us — made for a natural association in our minds with the severity of Washington’s winters. Yet within the maw of those long, biting seasons, in those moments when snowfall engulfed us and everything came to a halt, something else emerged: a serene, pristine landscape layered clean of the cumbrous gears and levers of power, a world all our own brought to a standstill.

        To us, Kennedy’s election hinted at an era of great changes. As 17-year-olds we were too young to vote, but we all hoped he would win. His relative youth readily appealed to us, the controversy about his religion engaged our Irish Catholic identity, and the somnolence of the Eisenhower years, by comparison, was a tangible reminder of the chained stirrings of our adolescence.

      • Energy

        • Opinion | We Need To Stop The Fossil Fuel Industry’s PR Machine

          Our theory of change is simple: if we can get the world’s largest and most powerful PR and Ad agencies to stop working for the fossil fuel industry, we’ll dramatically weaken the industry’s ability to pollute the public debate and block climate action.

        • Joe Biden Canceled Keystone XL. Indigenous Leaders Demand the Same for the Dakota Access Pipeline

          After President Joe Biden issued an executive order on his first day in office canceling the Keystone XL pipeline, pressure is growing from Indigenous leaders and environmental groups for the new administration to do the same with the Dakota Access pipeline, the controversial project that sparked the historic Standing Rock uprising in 2016. “The pipeline is illegal,” says Jodi Archambault, a citizen of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and former special assistant to President Barack Obama on Native American affairs. “The best thing that he can do is drop the appeals to this and stop the oil from flowing now.” We also speak with Alex White Plume, a former vice president and president of the Oglala Sioux Tribe of the Pine Ridge Reservation, whose late wife Debra White Plume was a key organizer at Standing Rock.

        • Fossil-Fueled Fascism

          But just six days into the new year, these hopes were rudely shattered by images of far-right white supremacists, incited by an aspiring autocrat refusing to admit his electoral defeat, storming the Capitol in an attempt to overthrow the election.

          This fascist putsch was implicitly supported by some elected leaders, including GOP members of Congress who continued to promote the thoroughly debunked falsehood that the 2020 elections were “stolen.” Worse still, there are early indications that some elected officials may have aided the violent mob more directly as well.

        • Scenes from a Locked-Down Washington D.C. as Biden Takes the Reins

          I asked her if she knew that Trump had already left the White House and had reached his home in Florida. “It doesn’t matter where he is,” she said, “he can be sworn in from anywhere.”

        • KLM may ground all intercontinental flights due to new restrictions

          The Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management said in a response that KLM employees can only skip the rapid test if they stay within the secure area at the airport. “As soon as they step into a high-risk area and spend the night there, for example, they run the risk of infection with the coronavirus or mutations thereof, just like other people in the country concerned.”

          The exception offered by the Ministry is not a workable solution for long-haul flights. After landing, KLM always allows the crew to stay overnight in a hotel because of mandatory rest times. And hotels are past customs.

      • Wildlife/Nature

        • Biden on Biodiversity: the Silence and the Promise

          Let us first acknowledge and then move from A to B: from apocalypse to build back better.

          Visit “Build Back Better,” the official website of the Biden-Harris administrative team and vision. Click the “Nominees and Appointees” tab. “Climate” is a category of its own and appears on top (alphabetical). The names of nominees of the top leadership positions at Interior, Energy, EPA (Environmental Protection Agency), and the CEQ (Council on Environmental Quality) appear on the “Climate” page. There are other top positions with “Climate” on the title that appear elsewhere as well: “Special Presidential Envoy for Climate” in the “National Security” page, and “National Climate Advisor” in the “White House Senior Staff” page.

        • Why the Hammonds’ Livestock Shouldn’t be Allowed on Public Land

          It was the latest move in a long saga of crimes, some alleged and others proven, surrounding the Hammonds.

          In 1994, Refuge manager Forrest Cameron had revoked Hammond’s ability to graze livestock on the National Wildlife Refuge, and Dwight Hammond ignored the decision. Hammond was then allegedly involved in sabotaging heavy equipment used to build a fence to keep his cattle off the Refuge, and was subsequently arrested on felony charges. In response, a group of 500 angry ranchers gathered in Burns, Oregon at a rally organized by a Sagebrush Rebellion group, and urged attendees to harass federal officials by calling them at their homes. According to accounts of the time, Hammond personally threatened to shoot Cameron, one of many threats of violence suffered by government land managers during that period. Federal law enforcement backed down, reduced the felony charges to misdemeanors and then postponed the trial indefinitely, and ultimately dropped the charges altogether. Steven was then convicted in 2000 of interfering unlawfully with hunters, and later would be convicted of forging a landowner’s preference hunting document.

        • Opinion | Protecting Animals Isn’t Just the Right Thing—It’s Uniting Politics

          As we search for more ways to bring people together, compassion for animals provides us a wonderful opportunity to do some good and forge a greater unity of purpose in our politics.

        • Protect the Wildlands of the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem

          There are organizations like the Montana Wilderness Association (MWA), The Wilderness Society (TWS), Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem (GYC), and others as members of the Gallatin Forest Partnership (GFP) who support degrading the wildlands of the ecosystem with weak or no protection for some of the most ecologically significant areas of the northern portion of the ecosystem.

          These groups continuously emphasize how they are good compromisers, providing “everyone” a piece of the pie (ecosystem).

        • As We Heal and Move Forward, Watch Out for Aftershocks
    • Finance

      • How Capitalism’s Dogged Defenders and Propagandists Defend It From Criticism

        The placing of qualifying adjectives to differentiate among kinds of capitalism allows defenders to accept some of the rising chorus of criticisms of capitalism. Those criticisms, defenders say, apply only to certain kinds of capitalism that defenders also reject in favor of some other, preferred kind of capitalism. The flaws cited by capitalism’s critics become flaws not of capitalism per se but rather of its (unfortunately) currently existing kind. Such defenders can then focus our attention on changing from one kind of capitalism to another. By changing to a different kind of capitalism—one designated by a different adjective—the criticized flaws will vanish.

        With such reasoning, for example, “free market” capitalism’s devotees can accept all sorts of criticisms of actually existing capitalism. They too can denounce its inequalities, instabilities, and injustices. But, they explain, that actually existing kind lacks a fully “free” market. They urge policies that change the economy from a government-regulated kind of capitalism to their preferred “free market” kind. Similarly, champions of a “competitive” kind of capitalism can join critics of the monopoly kind. They attribute monopoly capitalism’s social ills to the adjective—monopoly—not to the noun, capitalism, itself. The solution follows: take anti-trust steps to establish a competitive capitalism, their preferred kind. Progressive or “social responsibility” advocates are also included among capitalism’s defenders using adjectives. They find narrowly profit-driven capitalism to be a kind that causes all sorts of social ills. A different kind of capitalism could rectify those ills by adding social responsibility to the goals and standards of success for capitalists. Such a “compassionate” kind of capitalism represents the better world they seek.

      • The Economy Was Broken Before the Pandemic Hit

        The political wisdom that people vote their economic interests carries with it implied models of how ‘the economy’ works. This has long been the ideological differentiator in policy disputes. Something seemingly straightforward like the Federal government sending out $2,000 checks— or not, is attached to a broader set of assumptions. Other nations have been covering lost wages due to the pandemic since it began. For all of the claims that ideology drives policy, American outcomes are determined by the political process, embedded ideology if you will

        The point here isn’t the particulars of how the U.S. does social welfare versus other nations, but rather how, and by whom, social welfare decisions are made? No system of democratic choice would produce the concentrated political and economic power that now defines the U.S. Over the last half-century the logic of neoliberalism has been used to fundamentally reorganize Western societies. It is this reorganization that drives the political process. Private campaign contributions drive electoral outcomes, while neoliberal political economy structures the political process.

      • Private Sector is “Efficient” Only at Extracting Money From Public

        A favorite tactic for grabbing what had once been in the public domain and converting it into private profit is the “public-private partnership.” A tactic sadly abetted by the world’s governments, as the name implies.

        Public-private partnerships (PPPs), a decades-long string of disasters for the public but often a bonanza for the private, have left behind a long trail of one-sided results in water systems, electricity distribution, sewers, highways, hospitals and other infrastructure. The latest report testifying to the damage wrought by PPPs comes to us courtesy of the European Federation of Public Service Unions (EPSU), a federation of 8 million public service workers from over 250 trade unions across Europe, and the European Network on Debt and Development (Eurodad), a network of 49 civil society organizations from 20 European countries “working for transformative yet specific changes to global and European policies, institutions, rules and structures.”

      • Opinion | Following the Money to Dark Places With the Stink of Trump
      • As Economic Suffering Grips Regular Americans, Wall Street Behemoths Ready Feast of Stock Buybacks

        “We’re going to be aggressively buying back, and consistently,” said Morgan Stanley chief executive James Gorman.

      • ‘One More Check Is Not Enough’: Ilhan Omar Calls on Biden to Back Recurring Direct Payments

        “We need to provide those struggling and left behind with consistent reliable cash payments during this Covid-19 crisis.”

      • Biden Has Extended Eviction Moratorium — Now It’s Time for More
      • Workers Need Paid Sick Leave, ASAP

        The Families First Coronavirus Response Act, passed in March 2020, required certain employers to provide employees two weeks leave at regular pay if they were experiencing COVID-19 symptoms or needed to quarantine because of exposure to the infection.

        Employees could also take two weeks of leave at two-thirds of their regular wage level to care for someone else affected by COVID-19 — and an additional 10 weeks of leave at two-thirds pay to care for a child whose school or child care provider was closed due to the virus.

      • The New Year Will Be Worse Than the Old Unless We Can Defend Something Besides Capitalism
      • All a Gig-Economy Pioneer Had to Do Was “Politely Disagree” It Was Violating Federal Law and the Labor Department Walked Away

        Ten years ago, the Department of Labor wrapped up a lengthy investigation of Arise Virtual Solutions, a company that recruited customer service agents to work from home fielding calls for big brand names like Disney and AAA. The so-called gig economy was in its infancy, with Uber launching and TaskRabbit starting to go national.

        The question for the Obama administration’s Labor Department: Did Arise employ those customer service agents? Arise trained the agents and exercised extraordinary control over their work. But it treated them as independent contractors rather than employees. That meant the agents weren’t entitled to minimum wage, overtime or other employment protections. They paid for their own training and equipment, and even had fees deducted from each paycheck for use of Arise’s technology platform.

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • Opinion | Media Allow Republicans to Use ‘Unity’ as Tool of Division

        The narrative the GOP will work for the next two years to build is that Democrats are the ones sowing division by refusing to work together to get things done.

      • ‘Hell, Even David Brooks Agrees’ Democrats Should ‘Absolutely Kill the Filibuster’

        “Can’t believe David Brooks and I finally agree on a thing,” said one progressive organizer.

      • America Installs a Pope

        Yes, I watched most of the inauguration, although somehow I missed Lady Gaga singing the national anthem. But I did catch the aerial jumbotron shots of the Trumps slipping out of Washington and the 21-limo salute that new President Biden got on leaving the Capitol, and my take is that America has chosen a pope—not elected a chief magistrate. The pageantry had it all, lacking only white smoke coming out the chimneys of the Senate.

        The day featured the return of Hillary Clinton to the national feel-good club (although her outfit looked like a home uniform of the Minnesota Vikings), culturally sensitive stage props (200,000 American flags?), and enough black Chevy Suburbans to warm the heart of any GM executive cutting a Super Bowl ad.

      • “Here Are the Superheroes To Come and Save Us”: Media Waste No Time Fawning Over Biden

        We rely on the media to hold the powerful to account. But in its first hours in office, the corporate press has celebrated, rather than challenged, the new Biden administration.

      • Despite What You Heard, There Was No Peaceful Transition

        Anyone trying to find the edges of the U.S. Overton Window right now must feel like they’re tracing an amateur rendition of an early Picasso. After a summer spent chanting “defund the police,” self-identifying progressives applaud the pouring of some 25,000 troops and busloads of out-of-city law enforcement into the streets of Washington, DC. Those eager to cheer the departure of a racist, sexist, war-hawking elitist from the White House were quick to welcome a new racist, sexist, war-hawking elitist. Those who lambasted Trump for dragging more swamp creatures into the swamp rather than draining it are applauding Biden for his diverse cabinet appointments, ignoring the revolving door of corruption and oppression they represent. Those who (correctly) decried the Paris Climate Agreement for being flimsy and non-committal are celebrating Biden’s executive order to rejoin it.

      • Majority of US Voters Across Political Spectrum Back Landmark Pro-Democracy Reform Bill: Poll

        One prominent campaign finance expert called the For the People Act “an incredibly important piece of comprehensive democracy reform.”

      • Russian court postpones hearing of Evgeny Prigozhin’s lawsuit against ‘Meduza’

        Moscow’s Savelovsky District Court has postponed the hearing of the defamation lawsuit filed by Kremlin-linked oligarch Evgeny Prigozhin against Meduza and editor-in-chief Ivan Kopalkov, Dovod chief editor Ilya Kosygin, and politician Maxim Shevchenko.

      • Complex Life Threatened

        It’s scary stuff. On this subject, America’s green NGOs prefer to address the danger by sticking to a middle ground, don’t scare people, too much doom and gloom backfires, turns people off, it’s counterproductive.

        However, emergencies have been happening for some time now. So, it’s kinda hard to ignore. In fact, that’s why it’s so obviously easy to declare emergencies today, yesterday, and the day before yesterday and many yesterdays before that. In other words, the house has been on fire for some time but the fire engines never show up.

      • The Ignominious Deceits of Congressman Cawthorn

        Before January 6, 25-year-old Representative Madison Cawthorn (R-N.C.) was known for being the youngest member of Congress, an ardent Trump supporter, and one of the few wheelchair users in elected office. Now he is in the headlines for giving a speech at the “Stop the Steal” rally prior to the insurrection at the Capitol that left five people dead. Throughout his short but meteoric political career, Cawthorn has used his disability to tell a story of overcoming: Despite great adversity, he claims to have achieved excellence through grit and physical strength. Many of his campaign ads featured images of Cawthorn intubated and hospitalized alongside videos of him lifting weights and hurtling forward in a racing wheelchair. But his claims of sporting success—like his accounts of education and business acumen—have often been misleading.

      • Trump Crazy and Intellectual Crazy

        I don’t have any easy answers to get these people to start thinking clearly, but I will point out that it is not just ignorant and/or crazed Trumpers who have trouble dealing with reality. Many of our leading intellectuals and our major media outlets have similar difficulty dealing with reality when it doesn’t fit their conceptions of the world.

        In particular, I am referring to my standard complaint about the unwillingness to acknowledge the ways in which the economy has been structured to redistribute income upward. I will focus on the two simplest routes, which are often described as “technology” and “globalization.”

      • 35 House Democrats Join Reps. Bush and Pressley in Calling on Biden to End Federal Executions for Good

        Warning that future administrations could follow in Trump’s footsteps, the lawmakers urge Biden to commute the death sentences of all federal inmates to “ensure that there would be no one left on death row to kill.”

      • Why Biden May Be Less Evil Than Obama and Clinton – and Why This May Not Matter All That Much in the End

        The main reason to welcome his ascendance is no small matter but betrays an extremely low bar: he’s not a malignant fascist sociopath like Donald Trump, the single biggest asshole in American history.

        Biden has a long and disturbing corporate, imperial, white-supremacist, and patriarchal record.

      • Why Neoliberal Leaders Who Failed to Protect Their Countries From COVID-19 Must Be Investigated

        A Supreme Court judge and the solicitor general have demanded that the Brazilian government act, but this has not moved Jair Bolsonaro’s administration. Everything about this story—detailed in Solicitor General José Levi do Amaral’s report—reveals the rot of privatization and incompetence. The local health officials knew in early January that there was going to be an oxygen shortage imminently, but their warning did not carry any weight. A private contractor who had the job of providing the oxygen informed the government six days before the city ran out of this crucial supply in the fight against COVID-19. Even with the contractor’s information, the government did nothing; it would later say—against all scientific advice—that early treatment for coronavirus did not work. The insensitivity and incompetence of the government of Bolsonaro have led General Prosecutor Augusto Aras to call for a special probe. As Bolsonaro dithered, the government of Venezuela, in an act of solidarity, sent a shipment of oxygen to Manaus.

        The latest development caused by the government’s toxic mix of privatization, ineptitude, and callousness should strengthen the case brought by Brazil’s health care unions against Jair Bolsonaro at the International Criminal Court (ICC) in July. But the problem is not the fault of Bolsonaro alone or even of Brazil. The problem lies in the neoliberal governments, governments in the United States, the United Kingdom, India, and others, governments whose commitments to profit-making firms and billionaires far outstrip their commitment to their own citizens or to their own constitutions. What we are seeing in countries such as Brazil is a crime against humanity.

      • ‘Neural Meduza’: Meet the real person behind the AI network that’s spoofing our headlines on Twitter

        In January 2020, Andrey Klimenko — a Russian military contractor who also goes by the nickname “Krasniy Doshik” (Red Ramen) — launched the Twitter account Neural Meduza. The project went on to become, in our opinion, one of the best parody media outlets to appear in the past year. Throughout 2020, Neural Meduza helped keep many of the staff working for the real Meduza from succumbing to depression, as it broadcast news from a bizarre parallel universe that makes ours still seem tolerable in comparison. To mark the project’s one-year anniversary, Meduza spoke with its neural doppelganger’s creator.

      • Social networks begin removing content for inciting illegal protests in Russia

        In response to orders from the Russian Attorney General’s Office and the state censorship agency, Roskomnadzor, social networks have started removing content that contains “calls for children to participate in illegal mass events.” This comes ahead of planned opposition protests in cities across Russia on Saturday, January 23, in support of jailed opposition figure Alexey Navalny.

      • What Biden Can Do Without Congress (But Won’t)

        I think we can all agree that Congress is basically a pit filled with hungry crocodiles in the later stages of lead poisoning, each with a different degree of dementia. (And I know that’s being generous in terms of their mental acuity.).

        So, whenever a president — let’s pretend this is a fantasy world where the president isn’t a few bricks short of a load — whenever a president wants to get something done, he writes up what he wants and then drops the pages into the idiot crocodile pit.

      • Enough of the T***p! End the White House Trumpery!

        The damage he’s done, the 25,000 or more lies he spewed out that led so many people to begin living in an alternative fact-free universe for the last five years, will stay with us for years unless his legacy is trashed and his millions of deluded followers wake up to the reality of his mendaciousness, narcissism, corruption and selfishness.

        Fortunately ex-President Trump has provided us with the very word we need to accomplish this: his own surname!

      • Moving Past Hate: Lessons from the 1960s

        The wars are long, the peace is frail The madmen come again There is no freedom in a land Where fear and hate prevail.

        Last week there was a time, full of madness, fear and hate. People, mostly white and male, attacked the United States Capitol, egged on by the President and other Republican politicians. They brought implements with which to smash in windows and doors. They carried plastic cuffs with which to bind the Congressional leaders they actively sought to capture and even to kill. They had with them communications equipment with which to keep in touch with those outside the Capitol who may have been directing their depredations. In short, they came, some of them, prepared to carry out a coup against the government of the United States.

      • Dodging Bullets

        Whatever else might be said of Trump’s presidency, it succeeded in coalescing a robust, militant, armed, swaggering fascist movement.

        Hitler led a coup attempt in Munich 1923 that failed when conservatives in the Munich government refused to follow through with promises of support, and so enough police were available to stop it.  Hitler was arrested, tried and jailed.  But the Nazi movement survived.  When conditions ripened after the crash of 1929, the Nazi Party grew from its core of committed followers and by 1933 it was positioned to take power.

      • Cruz and Hawley Should Be Investigated and Expelled, Some Democrats Say
      • How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Trump’s Bombast

        By this, I don’t mean some sort of high-minded platitude, such as “Democracy is a fragile thing.” Rather, I am referring to what of value, that one can put to practical use, has Trump actually taught us?

        With his never-ending seeking of attention and self-promoting, Trump interjected himself as an increasingly constant presence in the infotainment firmament for decades. He was one of those human barking seals who lived in dread that five minutes might pass and he wasn’t the center of attention. Since entering the political arena, through his wily manipulation of mass and social media he became such an ever-present fixture in daily life that Nazi Minister of Propaganda Joseph Goebbels would have drooled with envy. Via the tools of broadcast and cable TV, the Internet, Twitter, etc., the public has been bombarded with 24/7 Trump far more frequently than Hitler or Mussolini were ever inflicted on their publics.

      • ‘If This Is a Trial Balloon… Hopefully It Fails’: Biden Warned Against Naming Corporate-Tied Michael Barr as Top Bank Cop

        “It’s hard to imagine a worse pick than Michael Barr to be the nation’s top bank regulator. Barr is deeply invested in the Wall Street and Silicon Valley corporations he would regulate, which should disqualify him.”

      • ‘Signal:Noise’ Says a Fond Farewell
      • How Do We Heal Now?

        To heal is to return to an original state of health: repair, rebuild, restore. However, because of America’s original sins of genocide and enslavement, our task is to build rather than rebuild, to co-create a more healthy and equitable nation.

        James Baldwin offers guidance: “Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced.”

      • Pelosi Is Sending the Impeachment Article to the Senate on Monday
      • It’s Funny, But It’s No Joke!

        What? That was Chris Rock on January 12th talking with Stephen Colbert.

        Two of America’s funniest comedians were struck silent by the infamy at the U.S. Capitol days before. Seth Meyers and Jimmy Fallon were similarly muted that week. Apart from a few jabs at the ‘MAGA monsters’, our energized comedy geniuses whose wit carried us through the shock and depression of the past 5 years collapsed that week. Michael Moore’s long, sad homily left me feeling he might resign from a brilliant career in political parody.

      • Biden Fires Steve Bannon Protege, Who Tried To Turn Voice Of America Into A New Breitbart

        Last summer we covered how Trump had hired Michael Pack, a protégé of Steve Bannon, to run US Agency for Global Media. USAGM is the organization that runs Voice of America, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, Radio Free Asia, and Middle East Broadcasting. It also runs the Open Technology Fund (which itself spun out of Radio Free Europe, and helped to fund a variety of important technologies for enabling free speech among dissidents and activists). It was clear from the beginning that Pack’s plan was to (a) recraft the media organizations to be propaganda machines and (b) shift OTF’s funding to some organizations with security/encryption techniques that were not widely trusted. Pack fired a bunch of people in a move that a court later rejected, noting that Pack did not have the authority to do so.

      • Killing Nora: The Real Reason Trump Should Have Been Impeached

        Its been 4 years. Jesus Christ! Has it really been 4 years? The Yakla raid was launched a week after Trump’s inauguration, so yeah, its been 4 goddamn years since Donald Trump sent a Seal Team 6 death squad to a rural village in central Yemen to murder an 8 year old American girl named Nora al-Awlaki. She was shot in the neck and left to bleed to death over a period of two agonizing hours in her wounded mother’s arms. A mountain of excuses has followed. At first the Seals were there to collect intel. The fact that they wiped out an entire village and came up with nothing but some dated videos on bomb construction made that excuse feel a little hollow though. Apparently Seals don’t get YouTube. Now the new official story is that the Seals were there to nail AQAP emir, Qasim al-Raymi. Once again, there is no proof and al-Raymi only bought the farm this past year.

        Lets get real here people, we all know exactly why Donald Trump rubber stamped the first known US ground assault in Yemen in history. It’s the same reason Nora’s name sounds so hauntingly familiar. Nora al-Awlaki was the surviving daughter of Anwar al-Awlaki, the famed American jihadi propagandist. Barrack Obama had him extrajudicially murdered in a drone strike back in 2011. Two weeks later, by coincidence of course, Anwar’s teenage son was murdered in another drone strike. The troubling fact about Anwar himself that no American seems willing to touch is that the man has never been empirically tied to a single crime. The CIA ties him to everything and anything but never offers anything in the way of proof. Anwar’s crime was that he was an American Muslim who advocated for other western Muslims to reject western materialism and embrace jihad against the nations killing their family back home. He was an extremist agitator and kind of a prick. To America, that’s reason enough for a death sentence, and the murder of his next of kin simply underlines the point. Scoff at the scraps of empire and even your children will suffer.

      • How Georgia Went Blue

        The white supremacist attack on the US Capitol on January 6 temporarily obscured the titanic achievement of Georgia Democrats the night before: defeating right-wing Senators Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue in the state’s runoff elections, electing the Rev. Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff and giving Democrats control of the Senate, with Vice President Kamala Harris poised to break any 50-50 tie. (Take that, racists.) Progressives had no time to celebrate, though, and it was almost as if that were the point. Of course, the hard-won result in Georgia did not inspire the deadly and seditious riot; we know the violence had been planned in plain sight for weeks, if not months, on social media and elsewhere.

      • Why Biden’s ‘Virtual’ Border Could Be Worse Than Trump’s Wall

        The public will remember the Trump administration’s border policies for its visual horrors: a mother pulling her children away from tear gas launched over the border by US border authorities, Border Patrol agents dumping water left for migrants by aid groups, children sitting alone in chain-link cells after being taken from their parents. The cruel and complicated mess of Trump’s policy shifts could fill a small book, but it never made the same impression on the average observer. Images and symbols drove public anger. And over the last four years, there has been no clearer representation of Trump’s anti-immigrant fervor than the border wall.

      • If I Were a National Republican Lawmaker

        I would buy a horse and, without resting, would go non-stop to Montana and remain there in the woods. Forever.

        I would erase the word shame from my dictionary.

      • Hey, Joe, Where You Goin’ With That Pen in Your Hand?

        Ol’ Joe obviously walked off the inaugural stage with his honeymoon plans well-laid. While I don’t personally respect presidential honeymoons for either party, I do try to look at each new president’s actions with an open mind and  search for the good.

        Here are a few high points you may have missed while sipping champagne at an inaugural ball or swilling cheap beer and watching MSNBC:

      • Opinion | After Four Brutal Years, Biden’s Inaugural Was a Healing Affair

        The new President, in his healing Inaugural Address, promises a fresh start as he commits to protecting our ‘fragile democracy.’

      • Dedicate Presidents’ Day to Healing? Not This Year.

        I had hoped we could accomplish that goal in part by dedicating this Presidents’ Day to healing and reconciliation. In light of the violent insurrection at the US capitol on January 6, that notion now appears out of reach.

        A “Presidents’ Day of Healing and Reconciliation” project centered around respectful dialogue seemed like a good idea two months ago. But that was before white, overwhelmingly male, domestic terrorists whipped into a frenzied mob by Donald Trump, stormed the capitol. My dream had become a nightmare.

      • Media Allow Republicans to Use ‘Unity’ as Tool of Division

        “In Biden’s Washington, Democrats and Republicans Are Not United on ‘Unity,’” declared the headline over a New York Times analysis by Peter Baker (1/21/21), with the subhead:

      • The Message Progressives Should Send to Voters

        Today’s quadruple crises have been a long time coming. In the 1970s and 1980s, the Republicans began dismantling protections against unfettered markets and destroying the federal government from the inside, claiming that freedom meant the freedom to go bankrupt, that a big government was a bad government, and that pulling oneself up by the bootstraps was a viable life strategy. Billionaires, Wall Street, and large corporations laughed their way to the bank, literally. They hid their taxes in offshore havens in the Caymans. Swarms of lobbyists flew to DC to secure subsidies for their pet projects.

        Everyone else paid the price: workers’ rights were stripped, workers’ salaries dropped, corporations cut jobs, factories in the Midwest and Rust Belt closed, small businesses closed, and controls on Wall Street speculation were lifted. When enormous corporations came asking for special treatment, there was money. When it was time for expensive wars, there was always money. When it came to social spending on infrastructure, education, Medicare, Social Security, and other programs that actually help ordinary people, somehow there was never enough money. When it became clear that global warming was a direct threat to human life on Earth, Exxon and other fossil fuel companies suppressed the evidence. Nothing was done to launch a large-scale societal response to global warming when we could have cut emissions easily, because global warming threatened fossil fuel polluters’ bottom lines. Pro-corporate Democrats and Republicans were both guilty in this desecration of our public life.

      • Judge denies request for Amazon to immediately restore Parler

        A federal judge on Thursday denied Parler’s request for a court order that would have forced Amazon to immediately resume hosting the controversial social media platform following its suspension earlier this month.

        In rebuffing Parler’s request for a swift reversal of Amazon’s ban, U.S. District Court Judge Barbara Rothstein said the social media site, which is especially popular among conservatives, had failed to persuade the court that it would ultimately win its lawsuit against Amazon.

      • PayPal shuts down account of Texas woman who flew private plane to Capitol riot

        Paypal on Thursday took down the account of Jenna Ryan, a Texas woman who reportedly flew a private plane to the Capitol riot, after she claimed she raised $1,000 for legal fees and other losses due to her arrest.

      • What next for the bankrupt NRA?

        The crossfire is only just starting. Tax authorities are said to be investigating Mr LaPierre for fraud relating to his personal taxes. Last year the NRA disclosed in a tax filing that executives had received at least $1.4m in improper or excessive benefits. Mr LaPierre paid back $300,000 in travel expenses that the group had covered. Some dealers in historic guns also grumble that the NRA has sold guns to board members that its members’ estates had bequeathed to the organisation, doing deals at friendly, below-market prices and depriving the non-profit outfit of maximum value for the sales. The NRA declined to comment.

      • Nokia says selected for U.S. Federal 5G Cybersecurity project

        Finnish telecoms gear maker Nokia said it has been selected as a technology provider and collaborator for the National Cybersecurity Center of Excellence’s (NCCoE) 5G Cybersecurity Project.

        Under the project, Nokia will work with NCCoE and other key vendors, including members of the government, for a secure transition to 5G networks from 4G.

        According to an official statement, NCCoE selected Nokia on the basis of its global success in 5G networks, including hardware and software, and mobile network security, and 5G RAN expertise.

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • EFF Tells Louisiana Court Satire Is Still Protected Speech Even If The Government Doesn’t Get The Joke

        Last summer, as anti-police brutality protests were in full swing, a Lafayette man posted an obviously bogus Antifa call to action on his “cajUUn Memes” Facebook page. The announcement called for “cajun comrades” to rise up and engage in a takeover of the River Ranch neighborhood.

      • Court Tosses RICO Lawsuit Demanding $90 Million And The Dissolution Of Google For Supposed Anti-Conservative Bias

        A lawsuit [PDF] against Google over ad practices and search engine rankings has been dismissed. The allegations start normally before taking a sharp turn into some recently favored causes of action. First, there’s the RICO. Second, the plaintiff claims the RICO and everything that goes with it is a result of Google’s anti-conservative bias.

      • Content Moderation Case Study: Facebook Targets Misinformation Spread By The Philippines Government (2020)

        Summary: Philippines president Rodrigo Duterte’s rise to power was greatly aided by Facebook and its overwhelming popularity within the country. An estimated 97% of Filipinos have Facebook accounts and the company itself co-sponsored a Q&A session with local journalists that was broadcast on 200 radio and television stations and livestreamed on the platform. Questions were crowdsourced from Facebook users, helping propel the mayor of Davao to the highest office in the country.

      • Twitter and Facebook Just Proved That Deplatforming Works

        The cowards melt away. Deplatforming works. Delegitimizing people like Ted Cruz and Josh Hawley and Trump works. Inauguration Day proved that.

        My fears of violence at the inauguration of President Joe Biden did not come to pass—thankfully. The day went off without a hitch. Covid-19 made this inauguration look different from all the recent ones, not white supremacists in red hats. Joe Biden still got to fist-bump Al Roker. Katy Perry got to sing “Firework“ to fireworks. It was a beautiful day.

        It’s fair to say that putting 25,000 troops on the ground and locking down Washington, D.C., for a week probably played a bigger role in securing the inauguration than temporarily suspending Majorie Taylor Greene from Twitter. And one can only hope that militarizing the ceremonial functions of government does not become a “new normal” we all have to endure.

        But there was no analogous show of might at state capitols, which the Capitol insurrectionists and other extremist groups had also threatened to attack. While state governments beefed up security ahead of the inauguration, they didn’t go with the full military burlesque. However, on the day of reckoning, after the months of threats and maskless protests and plots to harm elected officials, nobody showed up to the rumble. There was no “storm.” There was no “Kraken.” There was no West Side Story—just “The Sound of Silence.”

      • What Internet Censorship Looks Like

        Governments in the region regularly shut down internet access or manipulate online conversations to control dissent — Uganda did both ahead of last week’s presidential vote. But citizens also use social media to expose election manipulation and spread feminist movements.

        Our conversation highlighted an essential question: Can we have the wonderful aspects of connecting the world online without all of the downsides?

      • Read From the Bottom

        Sites like Reddit and Hackernews allow people to vote stories up or down. Users collectively rank the values of user submissions and comments. The Hivemind. It can lead people to create and discovery great things, or just enjoy funny cat videos. These sites filter content through a combination of their moderators and the masses. With that filter comes bubbles, echo chambers and group think. Only the most commonly held opinions are given a voice. If you want to break free of orthodoxy privilege1, you need to change the way you use these websites, by reading comments from the bottom.

      • Our jaw has dropped in the face of this media freedom!

        Four quarterly BİA Media Monitoring Reports published in 2020 show that, this year, 23 journalists (Ayşegül Doğan, Can Dündar, Deniz Yücel, Sultan Çoban, Barış Pehlivan, Barış Terkoğlu, Murat Ağırel, Yılmaz Özdil, Aydın Keser, Ferhat Çelik, Hülya Kılınç, Kazım Güleçyüz, etc.) were sentenced to 103 years, 3 days in prison in total as per the related articles of the Turkish Penal Code (TCK) on charges of “insult”, “membership of an organization”, “aiding the organization as non-members” and “espionage” and as per the related article of the Anti-Terror Law (TMK) on “propagandizing for a terrorist organization” as well as on charges as per the National Intelligence Organization (MİT) Law and the Military Penal Code.

        The Press Advertising Agency (BİK) cut the ads of five critical newspapers for 276 days in total in 2020, while the Radio and Television Supreme Council (RTÜK) fined the media, including critical TV channels such as Fox TV, Tele 1 and Halk TV, a total of 19,063,835 lira (approx. 2,500,000 USD). Waiting for their turquoise press cards, hundreds of media representatives are kept waiting by the Presidential Communications Directorate.

      • Twitter Should Cancel the Appeals Process or Make It Work (also: I’m in Twitter jail!)

        I got banned wrongly for a tweet last week where I was talking about the history of conspiracy theory and its relationship to current COVID-19 misinformation. Someone had posted that conspiracy pyramid that shows the relative harms of conspiracy and asked where fluoride might fit. I replied saying I thought that fluoride definitely belonged in the 5g layer — not anti-Semitic but definitely part of that dangerous John Birch Society politics/medical-conspiracy stew. A few minutes later I was hit by this.

      • Google and French publishers sign landmark copyright agreement

        In a first in Europe, Google and a group of French publishers said onThursday they had signed an agreement aimed at opening the path to digital copyright payments under which the US tech giant will pay publishers for online content.

      • Australia Wants Facebook and Google to Pay for News. The US Is Trying to Stop It

        If passed, the proposed legislation designed by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission would force Facebook and Google to negotiate with Australian media companies for the price of displaying their content. The country isn’t alone in its attempt to reign in the two companies’ domination of the media landscape, with the French government ordering Google to engage in similar negotiations.

        The move comes after an interim report released by the Commission in October of last year revealed that out of every $100 spent by advertisers in 2018, $49 went to Google and $24 to Facebook.

    • Freedom of Information/Freedom of the Press

      • In Belarus, a Press Badge Makes You a Target

        Beatings, arrests, court cases, internet blocks and revocation of press credentials — being an accredited journalist is no longer a guarantee of protection for independent media in Belarus.

      • Dissenter Weekly: Whistleblowing Cops, ExxonMobil Fraud—Plus, US Appeals Assange Extradition Decision

        In this edition of “Dissenter Weekly,” host and Shadowproof editor Kevin Gosztola opens with a couple recent stories involving whistleblowers at police departments, who took a stand against abusive activity.

        Later, Kevin highlights a whistleblower complaint against ExxonMobil for fraud and provides updates on COVID-19 data whistleblower Rebekah Jones and WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.The show concludes with an overtime discussion between Kevin and Shadowproof publishing editor Brian Sonenstein about how citizens could mobilize for whistleblowers and reforms that diminish the ability of the United States government to use the Espionage Act against truth-tellers.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

      • Mongolia hits 100% ROA coverage

        In this post, I want to share the story of how we achieved ROA coverage for all routes announced in BGP, and our future plans to achieve 100% Route Origin Validation (ROV), so that other communities can learn from and achieve similar results.

      • Gigantic Asshole Ajit Pai Is Officially Gone. Good Riddance (Time of Your Life)

        Ajit Pai, the man who killed net neutrality, enacted a series of industry-friendly deregulatory moves for big telecom, and drank from a gigantic mug, is no longer around to terrorize the internet. The FCC confirmed to Motherboard that Pai is officially gone:

        “Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai today concluded his four years as Chairman, eight years as a Commissioner, and twelve years as an employee of the agency,” the agency said.

        His official FCC Twitter account, where he antagonized people who criticized him, has been deleted.

    • Monopolies

      • Memo to Google and Facebook: please pack your bags and go

        It will be interesting to see who blinks first in the tussle between the digital platforms and the Australian Government: Google and Facebook or Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Treasurer Josh Frydenberg.

      • Patents

        • [Older] Bundesrat passes UPC legislation – UPC could open its doors in 2022 [Ed: This piece of nonsense really did not age well. Team UPC can’t help lying to the public again and again]

          Today, the German Bundesrat (the upper house of the German Parliament) passed the Unified Patent Court (UPC) legislation, bringing us one step closer to the start of the UPC. To come into force, the law will now have to be signed by the Federal Government, the Federal President and, finally, published in the Federal Law Gazette.

          For the ratification to trigger the UPC “count-down” it needs to be deposited with the Council of the European Union. The UPC will come into effect on the first day of the fourth month after the month in which Germany’s ratification is deposited with the EU Council. However, before the UPC can open its doors, the Provisional Application Period needs to start. Accordingly, Germany is not expected to deposit its ratification of the UPC Agreement immediately.

      • Copyrights

        • Turns Out That Brexit Means Rotting Pigs’ Heads, And Losing An EU Copyright Exception

          Surprising no one who understands anything about international trade, the UK’s departure from the EU — Brexit — is proving to be disastrous for its economy. Among the latest victims are Scottish fishermen, who are no longer able to sell their catches to EU customers, and the UK meat industry, which has tons of rotting pigs’ heads on its hands. And it turns out that Brexit will be making copyright worse too.

        • Legal Battle Over Rightscorp’s ‘Fraudulent’ Piracy Notices Heats Up

          Internet provider RCN has accused anti-piracy company Rightscorp of unfair practices that resulted from partly ‘fraudulent’ anti-piracy notices. Rightscorp asked the court to dismiss the claims but RCN now says that this would be wrong. While this legal battle is ongoing in a New Jersey federal court, Rightscorp’s website has vanished.

        • Nintendo Obtains New Injunction to Block Team-Xecuter Sites

          Nintendo has taken another step forward in its battle to prevent Team-Xecutor products from reaching and affecting the legal market. Following a pair of legal processes in Spain, a court has handed down injunctions compelling local ISPs to block three Team-Xecutor domains and two others offering pirated Nintendo games.


Links 22/1/2021: pfSense Plus, Endless OS Foundation, and Many Laptops With GNU/Linux

Posted in News Roundup at 5:37 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Linux in Healthcare – Cutting Costs & Adding Safety

      Healthcare domain directly deals with our health and lives. Healthcare is prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of any disease, injury, illness, or any other physical and mental impairments in humans. Emergency situations are often dealt with by the healthcare sector very frequently. With immense scope for improvisations, a thriving healthcare domain deals from telemedicine to insurance, and inpatient hospitals to outpatient clinics. With practitioners practicing in multiple areas like medicine, chiropractic, nursing, dentistry, pharmacy, allied health, and others, it’s an industry with complex processes and data-oriented maintenance systems often difficult to manage manually with paperwork.

      Need is the mother of innovation and hence people across the world have invented software and systems to manage…

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • System76 reveal the brand new Darter Pro with Intel Xe graphics and Open Firmware

        Looking to power up your Linux computing on the go or for around the hose? System76 have refreshed the Darter Pro with a brand new build powered by the latest tech.

        Just like a lot of their recent hardware, it’s coming filled with some great open source software too. System76 hooked up their new Darter Pro with their Open Firmware. This gives you coreboot and the EDK bootloader with System76 Firmware Apps. So say hello to fast boot times, better security and easy firmware updates from within the operating system.

      • These Linux laptops have Intel Tiger Lake chips, 15.6 inch screens, and weigh less than 4 pounds

        System76 and Tuxedo Computers are both taking orders for new thin and light laptops with 15.6 inch displays and support for up to a 28 watt Intel Core i7-1165G7 Tiger Lake processor.

        As far as I can tell, the new System76 Darter Pro and Tuxedo InfinityBook S 15 are based on the same OEM design, since the laptops are the same size, shape, and weight. They’re also priced similarly: the former sells for $1099 and up while the latter is available for 937 Euros (about $1140) and up.


        One of the biggest difference is that System76 offers to install Ubuntu or the company’s own Pop!_OS operating system, while Tuxedo sells its laptops with a choice of Ubuntu, OpenSUSE, or Tuxedo OS.

      • The 6 best developer laptops for 2021

        The laptop officially doesn’t support Linux, and even if you’d ask Dell operators, they will tell you there’s no support for Linux. However, most Linux distributions would run without any issues on these devices. I run anything on my laptop; from Arch to Manjaro, Linux Mint, and Ubuntu.


        The Dell Inspiron is a budget laptop that suits many developers’ needs. Because it has multiple configurations allowing it to expand its available memory, it’s a strong candidate for web developers.

        This laptop earned many developers’ hearts by being an affordable solution that can run Linux and Windows with good performance.

      • TUXEDO announce the InfinityBook S 15 with Intel Xe

        If System76 aren’t your preferred Linux hardware vendor we also have TUXEDO who just recently announced the TUXEDO InfinityBook S 15 powered by the latest Intel hardware.

        This new system actually sounds very familiar, and if you’re feeling a bit of déjà vu you would be absolutely right – you’ve pretty much seen this before with the System76 Darter Pro. In fact, they’re mostly the same. The main advantage is probably shipping, since System76 are based in the USA with TUXEDO in Germany and also support times / returns depending on where you are.

        With a base configuration of the TUXEDO InfinityBook S 15 coming with a Full HD IPS display, Intel Core i5-1135G7 with Intel Iris Xe Graphics, 8 GB 3200 MHz DDR4 RAM, and a 250 GB Samsung 860 EVO. Their starting price is €937 EUR, compared with the $1,099 USD from System76.

      • TUXEDO InfinityBook S 15 is a Big, Beefy, and Beautiful Linux Laptop

        This is a 15.6-inch laptop somehow squeezed (possibly through magic) into a 14-inch laptop chassis. The device comes pre-loaded with a choice of Linux distros (including encrypted Ubuntu), and packs in some pretty powerful internals.

        With a 92 percent screen-to-body-ratio, the InfinityBook boasts sip thin bezels and a full HD display (part of me would like to see QHD, aka 2K, screens become the norm, but I digress).

        The TUXEDO InfinityBook S 15 base configuration starts at €937. This gets you an Intel Core i5-1135G7, Intel Iris Xe Graphics, 8 GB of 3200 MHz DDR4 RAM, and a 250 GB Samsung 860 EVO M.2 SSD.

    • Audiocasts/Shows/Videos

      • Configuring The Xmobar Panel In Xmonad – YouTube

        One of the trickiest things about setting up the Xmonad tiling window manager is configuring the panel, which for most Xmonad users is Xmobar. When new users look at the example configs and the documentation for Xmobar, they can be overwhelmed by the lengthy manual and the multitude of options available. But it’s not as complicated as it seems.

      • Flowblade: Was It Worth Leaving Kdenlive – YouTube

        Kdenlive is the bane of my existence, so I’m looking for something better and Flowblade is the first on the chopping block and you know what, it’s a video editor, that’s about as positive as I’m going to get in this video.

      • Bad Voltage Poetry in Notion

        Stuart Langridge, Jono Bacon, and Jeremy Garcia present Bad Voltage, in which Bad Voltage is on Spotify!

      • Linux Mint 20.1 “MATE” overview | Stable, robust, traditional. – YouTube

        In this video, I am going to show an overview of Linux Mint 20.1 “MATE” and some of the applications pre-installed.

      • The HEROIC quest to bring EPIC Game Store to Linux!

        Epic Game Store has been a thorn in the side of many Linux gamers due to Epic refusing to port their software and securing many exclusives. But the community is fighting back!

      • #WomenInLinux Podcast: Darlene Gillard Jones – digitalundivided – Women in Linux

        Darlene Gillard Jones is the Chief Community Officer, a Partner and founding team member of digitalundivided (DID), a social enterprise that fosters economic growth through the empowerment of Black and Latina women entrepreneurs using innovation as a tool. In addition to providing leadership to DID’s staff and key stakeholders, Darlene oversees all community partnerships and events for the organization. She is part of the leadership team behind some of DID’s signature programs and events including the recently launched BIG Innovation Center and BIG Incubator program – the first and only space and tech accelerator program dedicated to the training and support of Black and Latina women founders of high-growth tech companies.

    • Kernel Space

      • You can run Linux on an M1 Mac if you have the patience
      • Run Linux on Apples M1 processor using new Corellium port

        Since the availability and launch of Apples new M one silicon chip, calipers have been working hard to run different operating systems on the platform with the most obvious being Windows and Linux. Today thanks to Corellium, owners of new MacBooks by the latest silicon M1 chips can now run the Ubuntu Linux operating system. Corellium’s CTO Chris Wade made the announcement via Twitter explaining that the Corellium development team has been able to bring Linux to the Apple M1 Macs using a modified version of Ubuntu that supports the full user interface, in addition to USB, I2C, and DART. Although don’t expect everything to be supported as the project is still in its beta release at the moment. The 9to5Mac website explains more.

        “For instance, you’ll probably need a USB-C dongle to use the network when booted into Linux, not to mention that there’s no hardware acceleration for now. Even so, it’s very interesting to see that they managed to run a full version of Linux on the new Macs with ARM-based chips — and the project is still in beta.”

      • Corellium has ported Linux to Apple’s M1-based Macs

        When Apple first announced the M1 chip, many people were interested in seeing macOS running on ARM instead of Intel-based hardware. Due to the change, Macs were seemingly bound to macOS and Apple’s walled garden rules, but one Linux development group has found a way around this, enabling Ubuntu OS to run on M1 powered Macs.

        Corellium is a start-up company specialising in virtualisation and emulation of ARM-based platforms. Using its expertise in these areas, the company has created a “completely usable” version of Linux for Apple’s M1-powered devices. In the tweet posted by Chris Wade, the CTO of Corellium showed photos of a Mac Mini M1 running a version of Ubuntu.

      • Ubuntu Linux Now Runs On Apple M1 Silicon Macs, What To Expect And How To Prepare

        One of the more pragmatic aspects of Intel-powered Macs was their ability to run alternative operating systems, including Windows and Linux, without much effort at all. Apple even included a Windows preparation tool, Boot Camp, on all of its systems with Intel Core processors. With the advent of Apple Silicon Macs (such as the recent Mac mini) that have the company’s M1 SoC under the hood, Apple discontinued Boot Camp. Those systems had been locked into macOS 11 Big Sur, but thanks to Arm-based virtual cloud device maker Corellium, Ubuntu Linux is now “completely usable.”

        Arm offers an array of licenses to its architecture that range from processor licenses, in which a chip vendor can whole hog plug modules of Arm CPU cores into a chip, to the more abstracted architecture license, which is what Apple uses to develop custom Arm64 CPUs for its own devices. Being an architecture licensee, Apple is beholden to nobody in the way that its chips implement the ISA and boot an operating system. According to Corellium, those implementation differences are what made it a bit more difficult to get running Ubuntu. In a series of tweets, Corellium’s Chief Technical Officer Chris Wade recently showed off Ubuntu running on an Apple M1-powered Mac mini, so we felt compelled to explore it a little ourselves as well.

      • Linux can now be run on the Mac Mini with Apple Silicon

        Ever since Apple launched its new Macs with the company’s new high-performance ARM chips, third-party software developers have been hard at work getting alternative operating systems up and running on the new hardware. Early last month, a few developers booted Windows 10 and Fedora Linux on an M1 Mac via virtualization, but the biggest breakthrough in alternative OS development for M1 Macs has come from the team at Corellium, a firm that specializes in ARM device virtualization. The team has managed to port Linux and make it “completely usable” on the M1 Mac Mini.

      • Corellium Details How to Install Linux on Your M1 Mac
      • Corellium releases “fully usable” Linux build for Apple Silicon-based Macs – O’Grady’s PowerPage

        This portends some good things to come for operating systems that can run on new Apple Silicon hardware.

        A group of security researchers at Corellium have ported a version of Linux to the Apple Silicon M1 chip that will ultimately be released under an open-source license.

        The Linux version is a full Ubuntu desktop operating system that can be booted from a USB device, per Corellium’s Chief Technology Officer Chris Wade. While details as presently scarce, Wade has stated that Linux is now “completely usable” on Apple Silicon hardware.

      • You can now run Linux on your M1-equipped Mac, kind of

        Apple’s new M1 powered Macs have blisteringly fast speed, but only if you want to use macOS. Windows support might be a ways off, but if you want to tinker with Linux there’s now a port for Ubuntu to run on the new ARM-powered Macs.

        Security firm Corellium knows a thing or two about virtualization on Apple devices, as they offer a virtualized version of iOS for security testing purposes. Now they’ve managed to port Ubuntu, one of the most popular Linux distributions, to run on the new M1 Macs. Even better, they’ve laid out exactly what you need to do if you want to have a go yourself.

      • How Linux was ported to the Apple Silicon M1 Mac mini

        Linux now works on the Mac mini with M1 processor — but Apple did not make it easy for the team to port the OS with its custom firmware and unique data paths. Here’s how Corellium got it done.

        Now that Linux is fully usable on Macs with M1 processors the team at Corellium has detailed their process for porting the OS.

        In Thursday’s post, Corellium says that they have been studying Apple’s custom processors since the iPhone 6 released in 2014. The company used some exploits and the previous study to build a kernel port to the A10 processor in early 2020.

        Apple released the Macs with M1 processor in November 2020. A follow-on OS update enabled users to install custom kernels. Following the addition of that ability, the Corellium team began working on a Linux port.

      • Ubuntu Linux finally bootable on Apple M1 Mac

        It has been a while since Apple’s new M1 Mac PC was launched. But now reports have surfaced that everyone’s favourite Ubuntu Linux is completely installable and usable on the new M1 Macs. According to sources, various developers working on the project have released a port through which you can install Linux for M1 Macs.

        Corellium’s Chris Wade announced the Linux port for M1 Macs on Twitter earlier today. But since it’s just an initial port there are indeed a lot of limitations. Let not forget that the M1 Mac comes with apples new silicon and is generally new in the market.

      • Someone Got Linux Up And Running On An M1 Mac Mini

        Not a fan of Apple’s macOS operating system but like the new M1 hardware that accompanies it? Then maybe installing a different operating system could be the answer, and no, we’re not talking about Windows. Thanks to the team at Corellium, it appears that they have managed to get Linux up and running on the M1 powered Mac mini.

        According to Corellium’s Chief Technology Office Chris Wade, this is a full version of the Ubuntu desktop operating system that has been booted from a USB drive. While Wade does not dive into the details, he does claim that the version of Linux they installed is “completely usable” on Apple Silicon computers.

      • You can run Linux on an M1 Mac if you have the patience | Engadget

        Corellium has successfully run Ubuntu Linux on Apple’s M1 Macs, although you’ll need a USB drive and some know-how to make it work.

      • Someone ported Linux to the new Arm-based Mac Mini

        Running Linux on Intel-based Macs is relatively easy. Now that Apple is transitioning to its own silicon, it is no longer so straightforward. Although the M1 SoCs are Arm-based processors, and there are Arm versions of Linux available, components on the new Apple chips don’t play well with current Linux distos.

        Apple has not made dual-booting easy on its newest Arm-based computers. While there are Linux distros designed to run on Arm hardware, Apple silicon is a different breed. However, Security researchers at Corellium have a working Linux port for Apple’s M1 Macs.

        The operating system Corellium developed is an Arm-based Ubuntu distro that boots from a USB drive, but it is not as simple as plug-and-play. The main hurdle to getting Linux running on the M1 is hardware drivers.

      • M1 Mac now supports an Ubuntu port

        The chips are based on ARM architecture, same as the iPhone, iPad, and Apple TV processors. The change means that the new M1 Macs will not support the use of Bootcamp which is used to install Windows alongside macOS or even flavours of Linux. However, to rescue, a security firm named Corellium has successfully ported Ubuntu to M1 Macs.

      • M1 Mac gets Ubuntu Linux port release

        Chris Wade, CTO of Corellium has announced via tweet that M1 Macs will be getting a functional Ubuntu Linux port. The software will be released on GitHub and will include a tutorial for those who are interested.

      • Corellium Successfully Runs Ubuntu Linux on M1 Mac

        Corellium has announced it has Ubuntu Linux running on an M1 Mac, in what is described as a “completely usable” experience.

        Mac computers are popular options for Linux users and developers. Many want to combine their operating system (OS) of choice with machines that are widely considered to be among the best industrial designs in the business.

        With Apple moving to its own custom silicon, however, there was doubt about the future of Linux on Macs. Apple’s new M1 chip is an ARM-based designed, similar to what the company has been running in iPhones and iPads for years.

        Even Linus Torvalds has said he would love to run one of the new M1 Macs, but wasn’t optimistic it could run Linux.

      • Corellium Releases ‘Completely Usable’ Version of Linux for M1 Macs

        Ubuntu Linux is installable and functional on M1 Macs thanks to work done by Corellium, Corellium CTO Chris Wade announced early this morning. Security researchers at the company have developed a port that has been released on GitHub with an installation tutorial coming later today.

      • ‘Completely Usable’ Version of Linux for M1 Macs Released

        Corellium CTO Chris Wade has announced today that Ubuntu Linux is now completely installable and usable on the new M1 Macs. Researchers at the company have developed and released a port through which you can install Linux for M1 Macs. Apple announced the first batch of its custom silicon Macs last year which includes the MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, and Mac Mini. If you’re a die-hard Linux user, you can now give it a swing on your new M1 Mac.

      • We turn away for a second and Corellium is already showing off Ubuntu on Apple Silicon

        Those with pockets deep enough to spring for Apple’s latest and greatest and a desire to avoid macOS can follow a relatively straightforward guide from Corellium on getting the Raspberry Pi image of Ubuntu 20.10 up and running. “We used a Raspberry Pi image because it was a live USB boot image, so we only had to make minor modifications to boot it,” the team explained.

        Corellium also paid tribute to the team behind PongoOS – a pre-boot execution environment for Apple boards – “for contributing their expertise and collaboration”.

        An RFC has been submitted to upstream with a view to review and potentially include the changes for a minimal Linux on Apple Silicon boot. The latest patches were pushed to the GitHub repo late yesterday.

        There are alternatives in the works too. The Asahi Linux project notwithstanding, virtualization is also an option.

      • Alyssa Rosenzweig: Dissecting the Apple M1 GPU, part II

        The bulk of the new code is responsible for constructing the various command buffers and descriptors resident in shared memory, used to control the GPU’s behaviour. Any state accessible from Metal corresponds to bits in these buffers, so understanding them will be the next major task. So far, I have focused less on the content and more on the connections between them. In particular, the structures contain pointers to one another, sometimes nested multiple layers deep. The bring-up process for the project’s triangle provides a bird’s eye view of how all these disparate pieces in memory fit together.

        As an example, the application-provided vertex data are in their own buffers. An internal table in yet another buffer points each of these vertex buffers. That internal table is passed directly as input to the vertex shader, specified in another buffer. That description of the vertex shader, including the address of the code in executable memory, is pointed to by another buffer, itself referenced from the main command buffer, which is referenced by a handle in the IOKit call to submit a command buffer. Whew!

        In other words, the demo code is not yet intended to demonstrate an understanding of the fine-grained details of the command buffers, but rather to demonstrate there is “nothing missing”. Since GPU virtual addresses change from run to run, the demo validates that all of the pointers required are identified and can be relocated freely in memory using our own (trivial) allocator. As there is a bit of “magic” around memory and command buffer allocation on macOS, having this code working at an early stage gives peace of mind going forward.

      • Apple M1 Open-Source GPU Bring-Up Sees An Early Triangle

        The open-source/Linux Apple M1 work continues to be quite busy this week… The latest is Alyssa Rosenzweig who has been working on reverse-engineering the M1 graphics processor has been able to write some early and primitive code for rendering a triangle.

        Alyssa Rosenzweig of Panfrost fame has been working to reverse engineer the Apple M1 graphics as part of the Asahi Linux effort with developer Marcan.

      • Linux 5.12 Set To See Support For The Nintendo 64 – Phoronix

        It’s taken nearly twenty five years but the mainline Linux kernel this year will be able to boot on the Nintendo 64 game console… It’s looking like the Nintendo 64 support will be merged with the upcoming Linux 5.12 kernel.

        Back on Christmas we wrote about a new Linux kernel port to the Nintendo 64. The port was done by longtime open-source developer Lauri Kasanen and done for his own personal satisfaction with being unsure if there would be any interest in having the code upstreamed into the Linux kernel.

      • Implementing a performance boosting algorithm in Coccinelle

        Last year, from June to September, I worked on the kernel development tool Coccinelle under Collabora. I implemented a performance boosting algorithm for one of Coccinelle’s use cases. Here’s a look at this work.

        What is Coccinelle?

        Coccinelle is a tool used to refactor C source code. It’s used for development in the Linux Kernel. You write an abstract patch (called a Semantic patch in Coccinelle terms), basically to remove a few lines of code and add some, to make a tree-wide change.

      • Graphics Stack

        • More OpenGL Threading Improvements Land For Mesa 21.1 – Phoronix

          Even in 2021 longtime open-source AMD Mesa driver developer Marek Olšák isn’t done optimizing OpenGL for delivering the best possible performance with the Radeon graphics driver. Marek’s latest work includes more OpenGL threading enhancements and other work seemingly targeted at SPECViewPerf workloads.

          Marek has spent the past several weeks working to remove the last OpenGL threading synchronization stalls that happen with SPECViewPerf 13. As part of this latest pull request he added support to glthread for executing display lists asynchronously. Plus there are some other OpenGL code improvements too.

        • More Intel Graphics Work In Linux 5.12: Gen7 Improvements, Faster Suspend/Resume

          New feature material for Linux 5.12 continues getting ready ahead of the merge window opening in February to formally kick off the cycle.

          On top of the prior Intel graphics driver improvements queued up in recent weeks to DRM-Next, another batch of Intel updates were sent out this week.

        • Zink OpenGL On Vulkan Now Supports OpenGL 4.2 With Mesa 21.1

          Going back to last summer there have been patches experimentally taking Zink as far as OpenGL 4.6 albeit it’s been a lengthy process getting all of the relevant patches upstreamed. Additionally, some patches have required reworking or proper adjustments after going through the conformance test suite to ensure they are up to scratch for merging. Thanks to that ongoing effort by Mike Blumenkrantz working under contract for Valve and the work by Collabora developers, it was a quick jump this month from seeing OpenGL 4.1 to OpenGL 4.2 in mainline.

        • Mike Blumenkrantz: Itshappening.gif

          I meant to blog a couple times this week, but I kept getting sidetracked by various matters. Here’s a very brief recap on what’s happened in zinkland over the past week.

        • Zink OpenGL-On-Vulkan vs. RadeonSI OpenGL Performance As Of January 2021 – Phoronix

          With the Zink OpenGL-on-Vulkan implementation within Mesa on a nice upward trajectory with most recently now having the backing of a Valve contract developer and a focus on getting the backlog of patches to this Gallium3D code upstreamed, here are some fresh benchmarks looking at where the performance currently stands when using Zink atop the RADV Vulkan driver compared to using the native RadeonSI driver with this round of testing from a Radeon RX 5700 XT graphics card.

    • Applications

      • Signal – Beautiful Secure Multi-Platform Instant Messaging App

        Signal is a free beautiful, open-source, and secure multi-platform instant messaging application. It features a modern design with controls that are easy to use thanks to its familiar user interface that is consistent across the different platforms.

        It employs state-of-the-art end-to-end encryption powered by its open-source ‘Signal Protocol‘ which keeps user communication secure. While there are other instant messaging apps that employ end-to-end encryption, Signal is the only app that doesn’t collect any form of user data thanks to its philosophy against ads, affiliate marketers, and trackers.

      • Cockpit 236

        Cockpit is the modern Linux admin interface. We release regularly.

        Here are the release notes from Cockpit version 236.

      • New Pipe: An Open Source Take on Android YouTube App

        You can install NewPipe in one of two ways. The first (recommended) way is to install the F-Droid app store, then search for New Pipe in the store to install it. F-Droid is a third-party app store and one of several great alternatives to the Google Play Store.

        Alternatively, you can just grab the app’s APK file directly from the F-Droid website.

      • Here’s why the Termux app is no longer getting updates on Google Play

        As many of you may well be aware, the Android operating system is powered by the Linux kernel underneath. Despite this, Android and Linux apps are not readily exchangeable because of different runtime systems and libraries. You can, however, get a terminal emulator app like Termux up and running on any Android device. For years, crafty Android users have been using Termux as a handy terminal emulation software as well as a powerful GNU/Linux environment, thanks to its substantially large Linux Package Collection. Unfortunately, the app is now at a pivotal junction of its life, as its developers have decided to stop updating the Play Store version altogether and migrate to F-Droid due to recently introduced Google Play policy and Android SDK behavior changes.

      • Linux Candy: cornyjokes – corny jokes for the terminal – LinuxLinks

        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.

        cornyjokes is a terminal based program that tells you corny jokes. On each evocation of the program, you receive a corny joke and an ASCII graphic. Nothing more, nothing less.

      • RapidDisk 7.1.0 now available – Random [Tech] Stuff

        RapidDisk is an advanced Linux RAM Disk which consists of a collection of modules and an administration tool. Features include: Dynamically allocate RAM as block device. Use them as stand alone disk drives or even map them as caching nodes to slower local disk drives.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • Learn IP Command to Manage Networking on Linux

        IP (Internet Protocol) command is used to manage, view network configuration on a Linux system. The command ‘IP’ and its uses are same in all the Linux family – Fedora, Debian, Ubuntu,Red Hat, CentOS and Arch Linux etc. It is the command-line utility that is part of iproute2 package installed in kernel.

      • How to Install Kubernetes with Minikube on Ubuntu 20.04

        Minikube is an open-source tool that helps you to set up a single-node Kubernetes cluster on your local machine. In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Minikube on Ubuntu 20.04 server.

      • How to Remove Files with Specific Extension in Linux

        To remove files with a specific extension, we use the ‘rm‘ (Remove) command, which is a basic command-line utility for removing system files, directories, symbolic links, device nodes, pipes, and sockets in Linux.

      • How to install Flatpak applications from Flathub – PragmaticLinux

        Ever wanted to install a desktop application on your Linux PC, but your distribution’s package manager didn’t offer it? With a bit of luck you can find the desktop application on Flathub. Flathub offers an ever growing catalog of Linux desktop applications in the Flatpak format. This article teaches you all the ins-and-outs you need to know, to install desktop applications as a Flatpak from the Flathub online repository.


        You can think of a Flatpak as a modern packaging and deployment method for Linux desktop applications. An application installed as a Flatpak runs in a sandbox environment, isolated from the rest of the Linux system. Flathub is an online repository that hosts Flatpak applications.

      • How to browse Google search on Linux command terminal – Linux Shout

        Although it is very uncommon that nowadays when people have smartphones in their hands, they would like to surf the internet using the text-based browser on a Linux terminal. However, in case you are on a CLI server or SSH and don’t have mobile access, then using the Command terminal to browser the internet or Google search engine will be a good idea. Well, Text attributes, images, and animations are simply not displayed in text browsers.

      • Configure a Linux workspace remotely from the command line | Opensource.com

        One of the things I appreciate about Linux versus proprietary operating systems is that almost everything can be managed and configured from the command line. That means that nearly everything can be configured locally or even remotely via an SSH login connection. Sometimes it takes a bit of time spent on Internet searches, but if you can think of a task, it can probably be done from the command line.

      • Five ways to use redirect operators in bash | Enable Sysadmin

        Redirect operators are a basic but essential part of working at the bash command line. See how to safely redirect input and output to make your Linux sysadmin life easier.

      • Convert your filesystem to Btrfs – Fedora Magazine

        The purpose of this article is to give you an overview about why, and how to migrate your current partitions to a Btrfs filesystem. To read a step-by-step walk through of how this is accomplished – follow along, if you’re curious about doing this yourself.

        Starting with Fedora 33, the default filesystem is now Btrfs for new installations. I’m pretty sure that most users have heard about its advantages by now: copy-on-write, built-in checksums, flexible compression options, easy snapshotting and rollback methods. It’s really a modern filesystem that brings new features to desktop storage.

        Updating to Fedora 33, I wanted to take advantage of Btrfs, but personally didn’t want to reinstall the whole system for ‘just a filesystem change’. I found [there was] little guidance on how exactly to do it, so decided to share my detailed experience here.


        I really hope that you have found this guide to be useful, and was able to make a careful and educated decision about whether or not to convert to Btrfs on your system. I wish you a successful conversion process!

      • Gitlab runners with nspawn

        This is a first post in a series about trying to setup a gitlab runner based on systemd-nspawn.

      • Polishing nspawn-runner

        gitlab-runner supports adding extra arguments to the custom scripts, and I can take advantage of that to pack all the various scripts that I prototyped so far into an all-in-one nspawn-runner command…

      • Assembling the custom runner
      • Exploring nspawn for CIs

        Here I try to figure out possible ways of invoking nspawn for the prepare, run, and cleanup steps of gitlab custom runners. The results might be useful invocations beyond Gitlab’s scope of application.

      • How to Install Signal Desktop on Linux

        Signal is published by the Signal Foundation and Signal Messenger LLC. These two not-for-profit organizations—based in Mountain View, California—were founded by Matthew Rosenfeld (aka ‘Moxie Marlinspike’) and Brian Acton. Together they continue the work started at Open Whisper Systems, one of Rosenfeld’s earlier start-ups.

        The Signal application is free and open source. Anyone can review the source code. The source code for the Signal Messenging Protocol (SMP) was reviewed by a joint team from the German CISPA Helmholtz Center for Information Security, the Swiss ETH Zurich University, Cisco, and the Canadian University of Waterloo. They declared the code clean, the motives pure, and the encryption rock-solid. Signal is definitely secure.

      • How To Find Hostname In Linux – OSTechNix

        A Hostname is an unique alphanumeric label assigned to a Linux system in order to identify it on the network. It can also contain a few special characters such as hyphen (-), period (.), and underscore (_). A typical hostname consists of up to 253 characters. Generally, the hostname is stored in /etc/hostname file in most Linux distributions. In this brief guide, we will learn about various commands to find hostname in Linux operating systems.

      • How to Setup Nginx with Let’s Encrypt on Ubuntu 20.04

        To enable secure communication (i.e. HTTPS) on your NGINX web server, you need to obtain an SSL/TLS certificate from a trusted certificate authority. Let’s Encrypt is a not-for-profit certificate authority that offers free SSL/TLS certificates.

        This tutorial describes how to setup a free SSL/TLS certificate issued by Let’s Encrypt on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS Server running Nginx.

      • How to merge snapshots in VirtualBox & save disk space

        One of the cool things about VirtualBox is that it lets you create snapshots of your virtual machines. You work, you save a state, you make changes, and then you conveniently revert back to the saved state. You can branch any way you like, create snapshots with the virtual machines running or stopped, and the functionality provides you with a lot of flexibility – and determinism – as you can consistently re-test known system states over and over.

        The uncool thing about snapshots is that they take quite a bit of space. I noticed that one of my virtual machines, with an expected footprint of only about 11 GB was actually taking 46 GB of disk space. And as you can imagine, there were snapshots – a total of seven different saved machine states. This ain’t bad, but what if you no longer need the snapshots and want to compact them, i.e. flatten them, i.e. merge everything down and trim down on disk usage? Let’s explore this further.

      • How To Install qBittorrent on Linux Mint 20 – idroot

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install qBittorrent on Linux Mint 20. For those of you who didn’t know, qBittorrent is an open-source BitTorrent client that aims to be able to provide a free application alternative to μTorrent, designed for Linux, Windows, Mac OS, and FreeBSD.

        This article assumes you have at least basic knowledge of Linux, know how to use the shell, and most importantly, you host your site on your own VPS. The installation is quite simple and assumes you are running in the root account, if not you may need to add ‘sudo‘ to the commands to get root privileges. I will show you through the step by step installation of qBittorrent open-source BitTorrent client on a Linux Mint 20 (Ulyana).

      • How to Install Kubernetes with Minikube on Ubuntu 20.04

        Minikube is an open-source tool that helps you to set up a single-node Kubernetes cluster on your local machine. It makes it easy to run a single node Kubernetes cluster on your personal computer for daily development work. It is cross-platform and can be installed on macOS, Linux, and Windows.

      • How to make a star with LibreOffice – LibreOffice Design Team

        Some time ago we asked the people how they use LibreOffice Draw. And while the expectation was that this module receives only low appreciation the opposite is true. LibreOffice Draw is used to create block diagrams for BPMN processes, mindmaps or technical drawings, to build complex vector drawing for network topology, electrical circuits, floor plans or UI mockups, as a desktop publishing tool to design posters, flyers, business cards, and as a tools to load PDFs for editing. Learn more in part 1 and part 2 of the results.

      • Install KeePassXC 2.6.3 In Ubuntu / Linux Mint | Tips On UNIX

        This tutorial will be helpful for beginners to install KeePassXC 2.6.3 in Ubuntu 20.04, Ubuntu 20.10, Ubuntu 18.04, and Linux Mint 20.1.

        KeePassXC is an application with extremely high demands on secure personal data management. It is a lightweight application and cross-platform also.

      • How to force awk not to print a newline

        I have two columns (fields) in my text file. I am trying to insert ‘|’ between two and create an HTML table based upon the updated file.

      • 7 fun Linux containers/image transports features | Enable Sysadmin

        If you work with Linux containers, here are seven fun transports features that you need to know.

      • How to install Kdenlive 20.12 on a Chromebook

        Today we are looking at how to install Kdenlive 20.12 on a Chromebook. Please follow the video/audio guide as a tutorial where we explain the process step by step and use the commands below.

      • How to install Podman on Ubuntu – TechRepublic

        For those who don’t know, Podman is the drop-in replacement for Docker on the Red Hat/CentOS/Fedora environments. This new container technology improves on Docker by decentralizing the components necessary for container management. Instead of having a single daemon for everything, Podman uses individualized components that are only used when necessary.

      • How to use the new DEB822 apt format on Ubuntu – TechRepublic

        If you’re a long-time Ubuntu user, there’s something new that’s arrived with the latest iteration of the platform that will trip you up for a while. Said something new is the 822 apt source format. You’re probably used to apt source files that contain a single line like deb http://repository.spotify.com stable non-free.

      • How to Store a Linux Command as a Variable in Shell Script

        Shell scripting is quite popularly used to automate stuff in Linux. It is used not only for system and server administration purposes but also by regular Linux users for automating day to day stuff on their systems.

        A shell script is nothing but a sequence of commands; which a command-line interpreter (Eg. Bash, Zsh) will run. Along with the sequence of commands, there are features like loops, conditional statements, variables that can be used in a shell script.

      • How to configure WireGuard VPN client with NetworkManager GUI

        WireGuard is an open-source VPN protocol implementation which is quickly gaining its popularity among VPN users due to its speed, ease-of-use and well-designed codebase. WireGuard kernel module is shipped with the mainline Linux kernel 5.6 or later, and its userland tools are already incorporated into the base repositories of all modern Linux distributions. If you are looking to set up a DIY VPN router on a public VPS under your control, there is really no reason not to try WireGuard.

        Setting up a WireGuard VPN router does not require any expert knowledge on the underlying VPN protocol, nor involve learning cryptic configuration language or huge configuration space. There are also various user-friendly frontends in the works that make client-side VPN configuration straightforward.

      • How to Install Scribus (Desktop Publishing Tool) on Linux

        Scribus is a free and open source desktop publishing (DTP) tool available for Linux, UNIX and Windows platform. Scribus is used to create PDF files, e-books, newsletter, magazines and posters etc. It can also be used to edit the existing PDF file.

        In this article, we will learn how to install and use scribus on different Linux distributions to create publication. To Install scribus, sudo rights or privilege access is needed

      • How to Fix “No Command” Error on Android

        It is common in Android that when trying to access the recovery mode or install a new software update, the phone is waiting for a command to access the recoveryoptions. However, in some cases, the phone may be stuck on the “No Command” screen.

        In this article we will provide some solutions to help you fix this issue so that you can start your Android phone normally.

      • How to Edit PDF Files in Linux Desktop

        PDF (Portable Document Format) is popular file system used specially for documentation. In all the Linux distribution you can find PDF viewer but not PDF editor. PDF editor allow you to edit, annotate, highlight and remove the content in PDF file. Not only editing it also allows you to merge, split the PDF files.

        In this article, I’m going to show how to install and use some popular PDF editor in Linux desktop environment. In this article, I have used Ubuntu 20.0 LTS desktop environment for the demonstration of these PDF editors.

      • How To Install Invoice Ninja on CentOS 8 – idroot

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Invoice Ninja on CentOS 8. For those of you who didn’t know, Invoice Ninja is a free and open-source web-based application software that can end up being used for invoicing, payments, time traffic monitoring, and many more. It is the particular best solution for invoicing and invoicing customers. You can easily create in addition to send invoices online in seconds. Account Ninja allows you to create your current own custom invoice and show a new live invoice as a PDF record.

        This article assumes you have at least basic knowledge of Linux, know how to use the shell, and most importantly, you host your site on your own VPS. The installation is quite simple and assumes you are running in the root account, if not you may need to add ‘sudo‘ to the commands to get root privileges. I will show you through the step by step installation of Invoice Ninja on CentOS 8.

      • How To – Linux List Disk Partitions Command
    • Games

      • Return to Castle Monkey Ball might be the weirdest mashup ever | GamingOnLinux

        Combining elements of the Wolfenstein 3D classic first-person shooter with the rolling gameplay of Super Monkey Ball, what could go wrong? Return to Castle Monkey Ball is quite hilarious. Pointed out by a reader earlier this week, it’s a web game you can play on itch.io right in your browser so there’s no downloading and the idea actually works quite well. Amusingly so and it’s pretty challenging too.

        The idea here is that you’re rolling your way through some cramped hallways, while soldiers are trying their best to shoot you. Smash into them to hurt them, keep rolling and collect bananas to boost your score and hopefully make it out alive. Probably one of the most unique mashups I’ve seen lately.

      • Sci-fi adventure taking place on an abandoned Earth, Mutropolis launching Feb 18 | GamingOnLinux

        Ready for a new adventure? Set in the far future on an abandoned planet Earth, Mutropolis is now confirmed to be launching on February 18.

        “It is the year 5000, and the greatest achievements in human history are forgotten. The pyramids, the Mona Lisa, The Fresh Prince of Bel Air – forgotten.
        Forgotten by everyone except Henry Dijon and his ragtag team of archaeologists. They left Mars to dig up lost treasures on the wild and inhospitable Planet Earth. Life is sweet, until Henry’s professor is kidnapped, and thing start to get… weird.”

      • Ballsy! World Cup 2020 is a wonderful throwback to Sensible Soccer | GamingOnLinux

        Remember the classic Sensible World of Soccer or the original Sensible Soccer? Classics from the 90s and Ballsy! World Cup 2020 is a wonderful take on it. Note: key provided by the developer.

        I have seriously fond memories of SWOS, playing endless hours on the Amiga a long time ago. Ballsy really does feel like it both mechanically and visually although naturally it’s more modern and looks a lot cleaner. After originally releasing in October 2020, the developer decided to port it in December 2020 to Linux.

        “Tired of these sluggish, scripted modern football games? Still like some physics momentum in your retro footy game? Search no longer! Ballsy! offers that fluent feel for flowing football fans. The European football, that is, so, not handegg. Though truth be told, the term ‘soccer’ was actually invented by the English, so it doesn’t deserve all the hate it gets.”

      • VR: The Fun Way to Exercise – Boiling Steam

        So using an Ubuntu 20.10 image, I installed said distro on a spare SSD that I have. Patola was right: there are actually a few more games that I could play on the RX 570 that I couldn’t with my GTX 1660.

      • The Big Adventure Event is live on Steam with plenty of demos to try until Jan 25 | GamingOnLinux

        Got a slow weekend ahead? Well now it might be a little busier as there’s a good few developers participating in The Big Adventure Event which is now live on Steam.

        What’s this all about then? Organised with help from indie developer and publisher Hitcents, it’s a celebration of the classic adventure game genre. They’ve packed the event with demos, new games, livestreams and more. The event takes place from now January 21 until January 25.

        It’s a genuinely good event too, looking over there’s a fair few titles I had totally forgotten about or had just never seen before. Plenty have a Linux demo too, which is wonderful to see.

      • Godot Engine – Online GodotCon 2021: Schedule

        Our online GodotCon meetup for contributors, users and game developers, will happen online this Saturday, January 23rd, from 8:45 UTC to 16:00 UTC. We hope to have you join us for this long-awaited moment of knowledge sharing!

        We have received many talk submissions from people from all over the world and while it was a heartbreaker, we had to make some selections to fit in the schedule. We want to thank warmly all the people who proposed a talk.

        Because of the incredible quantity of interesting proposals, we will try to host another conference soon, so if your talk didn’t make it this time, please consider submitting it for the next event! Thank you all for your patience with us, we already learned a lot from this experience and we can’t wait to work with you again!


        Watching the conferences is great, but many of you may also want to discuss the contents together and perhaps ask questions to the speakers. As the talks are pre-recorded, you will not be able to ask your questions live after the talks, especially since some speakers may be out of the timezone at the time of their talk.

        This is why, in addition to the live streaming we have set up a Rocket.chat platform that you can join freely. There, you’ll find one room for each talk. You can join each room to discuss and eventually ask your questions. In some cases, the speaker can be online too and will answer your questions directly!

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • Plasma 5.21 Beta is out and it’s a thing of beauty, towards first-class Wayland support

          Plasma, the desktop environment from the KDE team has a big new upgrade coming with the release of Plasma 5.21 Beta and it’s looking to be a thing of beauty.

          Their current aim with Plasma 5.21 is to finely polish the experience overall, with the KDE team saying it pulls in “many improvements into Plasma’s design, utilities and themes, with the aim of providing end users with a more pleasant and accessible environment”.

          Plasma 5.21 will bring with it a redesigned application launcher, theme improvements, a brand new UI for the Plasma System Monitor, Plasma Firewall settings added to the overall system settings to let you configure both UFW and firewalld, plenty of UI cleaning done on system settings and much more.

          It’s big in many areas, not just design tweaks, with a big plan in progress to have KDE push for first-class Wayland support with KWin. They say that Plasma 5.21 “makes great headway to reach that goal”. KWin, the compositor, has been “extensively refactored” and so you should see reduced latency throughout the entire stack.

        • KDE Plasma 5.21 Now In Beta With Much Improved Wayland Support

          KDE Plasma 5.21 is now in beta as what will be the first major KDE desktop update of the new year.

          There is a lot to find with KDE Plasma 5.21 while the good Wayland support is certainly exciting and a lot of polishing throughout the KDE Plasma desktop. Some of the Plasma 5.21 highlights include:

          - Extensive improvements to KWin’s Wayland compositing code as well as support for mixed-refresh-rate display configurations, among other Wayland improvements.

        • First Look: KDE Plasma 5.21 is Packed Full of New Features

          ntended as the next latest stable uplift to the (incredibly performant) KDE Plasma desktop, Plasma 5.21 offers users everything, from a bold new look to a brill new app launcher. Four merit-filled months of development have gone into shaping this release, and the fruits are almost ripe for the picking.

          For a closer look — or should that be a kloser look? — scroll on!

    • Distributions

      • MX Linux Now Has a Raspberry Pi Edition You Can Try Right Now

        Meet the MX-Fluxbox Raspberry Pi respin, a special edition of this lightweight and very popular Debian-based GNU/Linux distribution that aims to combine the goodness of MX Linux and the lightweight of the Fluxbox window manager with the educational flexibility of the official Raspberry Pi OS.

        The Fluxbox environment is accompanied by elements from the renowned GNOME, Xfce and LXDE desktop environment to make things even more fun. On top of that, you’ll find all your favorite apps, such as the Mozilla Firefox ESR web browser, Claws Mail email client, VLC media player, Thunar file manager, FeatherPad text editor, as well as Geany and Thonny IDEs.

      • Launching Endless OS Foundation

        On the 1st of April 2020, our for-profit Endless Mobile officially became a nonprofit as the Endless OS Foundation. Our launch as a nonprofit just as the global pandemic took hold was, predictably, hardly noticed, but for us the timing was incredible: as the world collectively asked “What can we do to help others in need?”, we framed our mission statement and launched our .org with the same very important question in mind. Endless always had a social impact mission at its heart, and the challenges related to students, families, and communities falling further into the digital divide during COVID-19 brought new urgency and purpose to our team’s decision to officially step in the social welfare space.

      • New Releases

        • Solus OS 4.1 Released with Brand New Desktop and Other Improvements [Ed: Well, this is an outdated report. A year late.]

          Free and Open-source Solus OS recently released its most significant upgrade to version 4.1 (Fortitude) and now features a brand new desktop experience, updates to its software stacks, and hardware enablement.

          Solus ships with the latest version, Budgie 10.5.1. It was released in October with improvements to the Budgie Menu, IconTracklist, Budgie Desktop Settings, Workspaces, Window Manager, and Raven.

      • BSD

        • Netgate Announces pfSense Plus With Greater Divergence From pfSense

          Netgate has announced pfSense as a rebranded and improved edition of this popular BSD-based firewall/network OS platform.

          The pfSense Plus offering is based on the existing pfSense Factory Edition and with that a greater divergence is forming between pfSense Community Edition and this commercial offering,

          Moving ahead, pfSense Community Edition and pfSense Plus will diverge but with Netgate continuing to “donate features” to the community project. pfSense Plus will be made available to Netgate customers and will be installed on all Netgate appliances.

        • Announcing pfSense® Plus

          pfSense® software is the world’s most trusted firewall. Now on its 46th release, the software has garnered the respect and adoration of users worldwide – installed over two million times, with at least half that many in active use today. A remarkably powerful, robust, and easy to use solution, pfSense software has delivered edge firewall, router, and VPN functionality to homes, businesses, educational institutions, and government agencies – literally across every continent.

        • Linux vs. BSD: Everything You Need to Know

          BSDs are free and open-source systems that are very popular among old-school admins. They are direct descendants of the traditional Unix system and offer many rock-solid features. However, despite their robust performance, BSD systems do not enjoy the widespread popularity of Linux. So many users wonder if switching from Linux to BSD is a good idea. This guide aims to shed some light on this.

          BSDs are a group of POSIX-compliant operating systems derived from the original Unix. They follow proven development strategies and focus on stability and performance. When talking about BSDs, we generally refer to one of the three main BSD distributions: FreeBSD, NetBSD, and OpenBSD.

      • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandriva/OpenMandriva Family

        • Seamonkey updated to 2.53.6

          SeaMonkey is an all-in-one Internet application suite. It includes a browser, mail/news client, IRC client, JavaScript debugger, and a tool to inspect the DOM for web pages. It is derived from the application formerly known as Mozilla Application Suite.

        • Google Chrome updated to 88.0.4324.96

          Google Chrome Browser is a cross-platform web browser developed by Google. It was first released in 2008 for Microsoft Windows, and was later ported to Linux, macOS, iOS, and Android where it is the default browser built into the OS.

        • Calibre updated to 5.10.0

          Calibre is meant to be a complete e-library solution. It includes library management, format conversion, news feeds to ebook conversion as well as e-book reader sync features.

      • Gentoo Family

        • exGENT Live Distro Makes Gentoo Linux Fun to Use in 2021 with the LXQt Desktop

          About eight months since the last update to the exGENT distribution, which aims to offer the Linux community a live and installable operating system based on Gentoo. I’ve highlighted live and installable because Gentoo no longer generates regular live ISO images you can try without installing the system.

          The exGENT 2021 release makes things even more interesting since it uses the latest Linux 5.10 LTS kernel series, which automatically translates to better hardware support and support for newer hardware. However, the kernel included in the live system is Linux 5.6.7 and Linux kernel 5.10 LTS will be used in the installed system.

      • SUSE/OpenSUSE

        • GNOME, VLC, Zypper update in Tumbleweed

          Five openSUSE Tumbleweed snapshots were released this week.

          The snapshots updated the GNOME desktop, GStreamer, VLC and a couple text editors.

          An update of bash 5.1.4 arrived in the latest snapshot 20210120. A few patches were added to the bash version, which is the latest release candidate. The 2.83 version of dnsmasq took care of five Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures; one of the fixes handles multiple identical near simultaneous DNS queries better and another CVE replaced the slightly lesser SHA-1 hash with the SHA-256 hash function, which verifies the DNS answers received are for the questions originally asked. GStreamer 1.18.3 fixed a memory leak and added support for the Apple M1, which made news yesterday as being able to run Linux. Several other GStreamer plugins were updated. Video player VLC updated for version 3.0.12 and added new Reliable Internet Stream Transport access output module compliant with a simple profile. About a dozen more packages were updated in the snapshot including ncurses , openldap2 2.4.57, and perl-Mojolicious 8.71.

        • CUPS-PDF | Print to PDF from any Application

          I’m sure this isn’t new to anyone, certainly not to me but after using another operating system for a bit I was really annoyed and wanted to just highlight what a wonderful thing this “printer” is for openSUSE and any other Linux distribution, for that matter. Sometimes, I think it is good to reflect on the the great things we take for granted here in Linux land.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • Dev Interview: Launching a career as an enterprise developer in Austin, Chapter 4

          In our last Dev Interview chapter, our trio of young developers discussed what it was like joining the corporate world along with their first impressions. As a developer, you’ll often be part of a smaller squad or you may form your own squad around more personal reasons. Given Luc, Da-In and Diana all have recently moved to Austin and started working at IBM in the summer of 2019, it’s pretty natural for the three to bond together over shared experiences. And provide support to each other during such interesting times. Let’s see what Da-In, Diana, and Luc have been up to as they discuss some of the more personal aspects of life and office friendships in corporate America.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Ubuntu 21.04 Hirsute Hippo Scraps GNOME 40 and GTK4

          Announced in the recent discussion, the team decided to stick to GNOME 3.38 and GTK3 for many critical reasons. Traditionally, the April release of Ubuntu features the latest GNOME desktop that releases just before the final version is out as per the release cadence.

          But, the recent changes that are introduced in GNOME 40 is too much with many moving parts. For example, GNOME 40 brings the following critical desktop design and behavioral changes, among others.

        • No GNOME 40 for Ubuntu 21.04 [And That’s a Good Thing]

          The upcoming GNOME 40 desktop is bringing plenty of UX changes thanks to the new shell design and GTK 4.

          GNOME 40 will be releasing in March and Ubuntu 21.04 arrives in April. The tradition so far is that the new Ubuntu release consists of the new GNOME release as they both release a new version every six months.

          Keeping that trend, you would expect Ubuntu 21.04 to feature GNOME 40 but that’s not happening. Not this time.

        • Ubuntu Blog: Compact and Bijou

          Snaps are designed to be self-contained packages of binaries, libraries and other assets. A snap might end up being quite bulky if the primary application it contains has many additional dependencies. This is a by-product of the snap needing to run on any Linux distribution where dependencies cannot always be expected to be installed.

          This is offset by the snap being compressed on disk, and the Snap Store delivering delta updates rather than force a full download on each update. Furthermore the concept of “shared content” or “platform” snaps allows for common bundles of libraries to be installed only once and then reused across multiple snaps.

          Typically in documentation we detail building snaps with the command line tool snapcraft. Snapcraft has logic to pull in and stage any required dependencies. We generally recommend using snapcraft because it helps automate things, and make the snapping process more reliable.

          But what if your application has minimal, or no dependencies?. Your program might be a single binary written in a modern language like go or rust. Maybe it’s a simple shell or python script, which requires no additional dependencies. Well, there’s a couple of other interesting ways to build a snap we should look at.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Why KubeEdge is my favorite open source project of 2020

        I believe edge computing, which “brings computation and data storage closer to the location where it is needed to improve response times and save bandwidth,” is the next major phase of technology adoption. The widespread use of mobile devices and wearable gadgets and the availability of free city-wide WiFi in some areas create a lot of data that can provide many advantages if used properly. For example, this data can help people fight crime, learn about nearby activities and events, find the best sale price, avoid traffic, and so on.

        Gartner says the rapid growth in mobile application adoption requires an edge infrastructure to use the data from these devices to further progress and improve quality of life. Some of the brightest minds are looking for ways to use the rich data generated from our mobile devices. Take the COVID-19 pandemic, for example. Edge computing can gather data that can help fight the spread of the virus. In the future, mobile devices might warn people about the potential for community infection by providing live updates to their devices based on processing and serving data collected from other devices (using artificial intelligence and machine learning).

      • Open source is still not a business model

        If you thought 2021 was going to be the year without big drama in the world of open source licensing, you didn’t have to wait long to be disappointed. Two stories have already sprung up in the first few weeks of the year. They’re independent, but related. Both of them remind us that open source is a development model, not a business model.

        A few years ago, it seemed like I couldn’t go to any sysadmin/DevOps conference or meetup without hearing about the “ELK stack“. ELK stands for the three pieces of software involved: Elasticsearch, Logstash, and Kibana. Because it provided powerful aggregation, search, and visualization of arbitrary log files, it became very popular. This also meant that Amazon Web Services (AWS) saw value in providing an Elasticsearch service.

      • Daniel Stenberg: More on less curl memory

        Back in September 2020 I wrote about my work to trim curl allocations done for FTP transfers. Now I’m back again on the memory use in curl topic, from a different angle.

        This time, I learned about the awesome tool pahole, which can (among other things) show structs and their sizes from a built library – and when embracing this fun toy, I ran some scripts on a range of historic curl releases to get a sense of how we’re doing over time – memory size and memory allocations wise.

        The task I set out to myself was: figure out how the sizes of key structs in curl have changed over time, and correlate that with the number and size of allocations done at run-time. To make sure that trimming down the size of a specific struct doesn’t just get allocated by another one instead, thus nullifying the gain. I want to make sure we’re not slowly degrading – and if we do, we should at least know about it!

        Also: we keep developing curl at a fairly good pace and we’re adding features in almost every release. Some growth is to expected and should be tolerated I think. We also keep the build process very configurable so users with particular needs and requirements can switch off features and thus also gain memory.


        The gain in 7.62.0 was mostly the removal of the default allocation of the upload buffer, which isn’t used in this test…

        The current size tells me several things. We’re at a memory consumption level that is probably at its lowest point in the last decade – while at the same time having more features and being better than ever before. If we deduct the download buffer we have 30427 additional bytes allocated. Compare this to 7.50.0 which allocated 68089 bytes on top of the download buffer!

        If I change my curl to use the smallest download buffer size allowed by libcurl (1KB) instead of the default 100KB, it ends up peaking at: 31451 bytes. That’s 37% of the memory needed by 7.50.0.

        In my opinion, this is very good.

        It might also be worth to reiterate that this is with a full featured libcurl build. We can shrink even further if we switch off undesired features or just go tiny-curl.

        I hope this goes without saying, but of course all of this work has been done with the API and ABI still intact.

      • Events

        • Libre Arts – This is 2021: what’s coming in free/libre software

          The fork is just rebranding and no new features or UX fixes (unless removing the bell pepper brush is your idea of finally making it right for everyone), and then Glimpse-NX — at least for the public eye — exists only as UI mockups. They did get Bilal Elmoussaoui (GNOME team) to create Rust bindings to GEGL for them last autumn, but that’s all as far as I can tell.

          So the current pace of the project is not very impressive (again, as a GIMP contributor, I’m biased) and I’m not sure how much we are going to see in 2021.

          That said, I think having a whole new image editor based on GEGL would be lovely. I don’t see why Glimpse-NX couldn’t be that project. A proof-of-concept application that would load an image, apply a filter, and export it back sounds feasible. It’s something one could iterate upon. So maybe that’s how they are going to play it.

          The fine folks over at Krita posted a 2020 report where they listed major challenges they will be facing this year: the completion of resources management rewrite that currently blocks v5.0 release, the port to Apple M1, the launching of a new development fund (akin to that of Blender), and more.

        • This is 2021: what’s coming in free/libre software (Libre Arts)

          Libre Arts (formerly Libre Graphics World) has posted a comprehensive survey of what 2021 might hold for a wide range of free content-creation software.

      • Web Browsers

        • Mozilla

          • Karl Dubost: Site interventions and automated testing

            We follow a strict release process tied to the release cycle of Firefox. You can discover our CSS interventions and JavaScript Interventions. The calendar for the upcoming releases is defined in advance.

            Before each release cycle for site interventions, the Softvision Webcompat team (Oana and Cipri) makes sure to test the site without the patch to discover if the site intervention is still necessary. This takes time and requires a lot of manual work. Time that could be used for more introspective work.

            To activate deactivate site interventions, you can play with extensions.webcompat.perform_injections in about:config.

          • Firefox UX: Who Gets to Define Success? Listening to Stories of How People Value Firefox to Redefine Metrics

            Firefox Monthly Active Users (MAU): Measures the number of Firefox Desktop clients active in the past 28 days. (Source: Firefox Public Data Report)

            With over 200 million people using our web browser every month, Firefox has arguably achieved classic definitions of scale. However, as researchers, we also know that the reasons behind product choice and usage are often more complex than numbers alone can illustrate.

            In early 2019, our Data Science team began to review our current in-product metrics in an effort to better understand how to interpret our usage numbers and expose any gaps. Firefox User Researcher Jennifer Davidson (and co-author) consulted on that project, which ultimately found that we had very limited qualitative understanding of Firefox usage numbers. Around the same time, a cross-functional team, including Firefox User Researcher Gemma Petrie (and co-author), began an internal research project to gain a top-down view of value by asking our senior leaders how they would define the value of our products. Perhaps unsurprisingly in such a large organization, there were a wide variety of responses.

            In late 2019, Gemma and Jennifer proposed a study to align these efforts and explore the gaps we were observing. We knew it was time to get an “outside in” perspective to inform our internal narrative, and ultimately help our organization make better product decisions. At the heart of this research was a fundamental question: How do people describe the value they get out of Firefox? We hypothesized that by better understanding how people describe the value they get out of Firefox, we would be able to better inform how to measure our success as a company and encourage our leaders to complement traditional measures of scale with more human-centered metrics.

            Some of you may be thinking, “That is a very fundamental question for such an established product! Why don’t you already know the answer to it?” There are two primary reasons why this is a difficult question for our Firefox researchers to study. First, commonplace products like a web browser present unique challenges. The role of a web browser is almost akin to a utility–it is so deeply domesticated into people’s lives, that they may use Firefox every day without thinking much about it (Haddon 2006). A second unique challenge for Mozilla is that the usage data to understand how people use Firefox is often nonexistent. Mozilla practices very limited data collection. Our data practices are aligned with our mission and we do not collect information about the content people visit on the web (Mozilla 2020b, Mozilla 2020c, Mozilla 2020d). Often, user research is the only opportunity our organization has to understand the content people seek out and their workflows within the browser.

          • Mike Taylor: The Mike Taylor method™ of naming git branches

            I started doing this about 10 years ago when I worked at Opera. I don’t know if it was a widely used convention, or I just copied it off someone, but it’s pretty good, IMHO.

          • Tor Browser: Anonymity and Beyond

            There are three types of web: the surface web, the deep web, and the dark web. All that you can access using your Google browser is known as the surface web – it is visible to one and all. The deep web is all information that is under lock and key. In other words, we don’t have access to it. The dark web, on the other hand, is a creepy and secret underworld where access is denied using normal browsers. But with special tools handy and ready, users can buy almost anything – from guns to atom bombs – with total anonymity. In order to access the dark web, we need a special browser capable of opening and displaying dot onion links. This is where the Tor browser comes in.

            Typically, when we surf the web, we leave digital footprints everywhere in the form of our IP address. We allow ourselves to be tracked and monitored by everyone out there. This is because our typical browsers allow it. Tor, on the other hand, does not allow tracking. It is a specialized browser whose first priority is anonymity.

      • FSF

        • GNU Projects

          • GNU Parallel 20210122 (‘Capitol Riots’) released

            GNU Parallel 20210122 (‘Capitol Riots’) 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.

      • Programming/Development

        • Maximizing Developer Effectiveness

          Technology is constantly becoming smarter and more powerful. I often observe that as these technologies are introduced an organization’s productivity instead of improving has reduced. This is because the technology has increased complexities and cognitive overhead to the developer, reducing their effectiveness. In this article, the first of a series, I introduce a framework for maximizing developer effectiveness. Through research I have identified key developer feedback loops, including micro-feedback loops that developers do 200 times a day. These should be optimized so they are quick, simple and impactful for developers. I will examine how some organizations have used these feedback loops to improve overall effectiveness and productivity.

        • Open-source Downloads Working Again

          Open-source downloads are working again. Users can install open-source versions of Qt framework and tools via the online installer or download the offline packages.

          Earlier this week our service provider for two important servers related to the open-source downloads had a severe hardware failure in their disk system causing a problem with open-source downloads of Qt. The problem has now been resolved and download systems are working again. Note that there are more than usual delays in using the system due to the load caused by ongoing restoring of other affected systems of the same service provider as well as the load caused by Qt users.

        • Remi Collet: PHP version 7.4.15RC2 and 8.0.2RC1 [Ed: Fedora and Enterprise Linux (RHEL / CentOS)]

          RPM of PHP version 8.0.2RC1 are available as SCL in remi-test repository and as base packages in the remi-php80-test repository for Fedora 31-33 and Enterprise Linux.

          RPM of PHP version 7.4.15RC2 are available as SCL in remi-test repository and as base packages in the remi-test repository for Fedora 32-33 or remi-php74-test repository for Fedora 31 and Enterprise Linux.

        • OASIS Open Establishes European Foundation to Advance Open Collaboration Opportunities

          OASIS Open, the international open source and open standards consortium, is pleased to announce the launch of the OASIS Open Europe Foundation (https://www.oasis-open.eu). The foundation provides a strong and dedicated European focus in setting standards for open collaboration, and allows OASIS to provide long-term sustainability for European Union research projects.

        • International Consortium Bolsters European Focus on Open Source and Open Standards Development

          OASIS Open, the international open source and open standards consortium, is pleased to announce the launch of the OASIS Open Europe Foundation (https://www.oasis-open.eu). The foundation provides a strong and dedicated European focus in setting standards for open collaboration, and allows OASIS to provide long-term sustainability for European Union research projects.


          The OASIS Open Europe Foundation’s Board of Directors will include:

        • Laetitia Cailleteau of Accenture (France)
        • Martin Chapman of Oracle (Ireland)
        • Eva Coscia of R2M Solution (Italy)
        • Gershon Janssen, Independent Consultant (Netherlands)
        • Janna Lingenfelder of IBM (Germany)
        • Guy Martin of OASIS Open (United States)
        • Andriana Prentza of the University of Piraeus (Greece)
      • Get Started with MicroPython on Raspberry Pi Pico

        In Get Started with MicroPython on Raspberry Pi Pico, you will learn how to use the beginner-friendly language MicroPython to write programs and connect hardware to make your Raspberry Pi Pico interact with the world around it. Using these skills, you can create your own electro‑mechanical projects, whether for fun or to make your life easier.

      • Perl/Raku

        • Perl Weekly Challenge 96: Reverse Words and Edit Distance (and Decorators in Perl)
        • Perl weekly challenge 96
        • Mood Lighting

          The lighting in my bedroom uses Philips Hue bulbs — specifically, the coloured ones. Last night, I decided it would be nice to set the three lights in my bedroom to cycle slowly through a set of warm colours using a script.

          I didn’t want harsh transitions from one colour to the next, but for the lighting to fade from one colour to the next in a smooth gradient. Also, I didn’t want the three bulbs to all be the exact same colour, but wanted each bulb to be at different stage in the cycle, like they’re “chasing” each other through the colours.

          So I whipped up a quick script. It requires the command-line tool hueadm to be installed and set up before we start. You can run hueadm lights to get a list of available lights, and in particular, their ID numbers.

      • Rust

  • Leftovers

    • New York Times Decides Kids Are Playing Too Many Video Games During The Pandemic

      One of the most predictable things in the world is that if anything is going on in the universe, people will try to find some way to make video games into a villain over it. This is doubly true if there are children within a thousand miles of whatever is going on. Notable when these claims arise is the velocity with which any nuance or consideration of a counter-vailing opinion is chucked out the window.

    • ‘The Basic Problem Is a Lack of Central Strategy’
    • Mother of Exiles
    • Remembering the work of David M. Tilbrook and the QED editor

      David’s opus magnum was a suite of tools called QEF, quod erat faciendum. Euclid wrote this at the end of geometric constructions, and in a software sense, we want a build system to produce what was to be made. At its time of creation, David was responsible for maintaining a (for the time) large system, essentially a Unix distribution. Tooling was stuck in the era of 1977’s make(1). For the details and basic ideas, see Tilbrook and Place (1986), “Tools for the Maintenance and Installation of a Large Software Distribution” (Huge thanks to Alan Grosskurth for making a copy available.) My favorite footnote is the one about their Prolog prototype of a build system: “Is the cray free? I need to reinstall /bin/true!”

    • Alphabet is shutting down Loon, its [Internet] balloon company

      Alphabet, the parent company of Google, launched Loon in June 2013, and Loon “graduated” from a moonshot to an independent company within Alphabet in 2018. Loon launched its first commercial internet service in Kenya in July, comprised of a fleet of about 35 balloons that covered an area of around 50,000 square kilometers. Loon has also provided internet services to areas affected by natural disasters, deploying balloons to Puerto Rico following Hurricane Maria in 2017 and to Peru following an earthquake in 2019.

    • 3 tips for automating your email filters

      In prior years, this annual series covered individual apps. This year, we are looking at all-in-one solutions in addition to strategies to help in 2021. Welcome to day 12 of 21 Days of Productivity in 2021.

      If there is one thing I love, it is automation. I will automate away small tasks whenever I can. Get up early to open the doors to our chicken coops? I bought a door that opens and closes at sunrise and sunset. Stream the chickens live every day from dawn to dusk? A little time with Node-RED and OBS-Websockets, and it takes care of itself.

    • Hardware

      • Why Backdoor the Golden Goose?

        Why I don’t think Huawei will install back doors in 5G telco equipment — it would be a forced error when they are poised to achieve a win that will give them a strategic advantage for years and maybe decades to come.

        I don’t think they want to backdoor everything. That’s a sort of crude short term move. I think they want to own the network infrastructure long term, at which point they will can do a lot more than just backdoor, and do it far easier. Huawei is being positioned for future benefit i.e. this is the Infiltration phase, not exploitation phase.

    • Health/Nutrition

      • Hungary becomes first EU country to register Russia’s ‘Sputnik V’ coronavirus vaccine

        Hungary’s National Institute of Pharmacy and Nutrition has registered Russia’s “Sputnik V” coronavirus vaccine for use, the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) announced on Thursday, January 21.

      • As Romney Says Covid Relief Bill ‘Not Well-Timed,’ Progressives Urge Biden to Abandon GOP Outreach, Move Swiftly on Bold Package

        “A Republican minority shouldn’t be allowed to hold the nation’s economic recovery and public health hostage.”

      • ‘Affirmation of Complete Incompetence’: Biden Team Says Trump Vaccine Distribution Plan Nonexistent

        “There is nothing for us to rework,” said one of President Biden’s Covid advisers. “We are going to have to build everything from scratch.”

      • How Many Vaccine Shots Go to Waste? Several States Aren’t Counting.

        As reports emerge across the country of health facilities throwing out unused and spoiled COVID-19 vaccines, some state governments are failing to track the wastage as required by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, leaving officials coordinating immunization efforts blind to exactly how many of the precious, limited doses are going into the trash and why.

        In Washington, a health facility allegedly threw out some COVID-19 vaccine doses at the end of workers’ shifts because staff believed state guidelines blocked them from giving unused shots to people below the top priority tier. In Maryland, workers appear to have tossed thawed doses when they ran out of time to administer them safely. How many doses, exactly, have been wasted in those states is unknown because neither state is tracking unused or wasted vaccines.

      • Experts Warn Civil Rights Fallout from COVID Could be Far Worse Than the Pandemic Itself

        The very first executive order Joe Biden signed upon becoming the forty-sixth President of the United States was the national mask mandate he promised at the Democratic National Convention back in August. The order makes face coverings and social distancing mandatory on all federal property and a legal requisite for interstate commerce. The move signals a clear intent on the part of his administration to double down on the “authoritarian” emergency measures – as described in a recent paper from Oxford University – implemented in the wake of the pandemic crisis and sets the stage for what may be the greatest threat to human rights and civil liberties the world has ever known.

      • Biden Team Blasts Trump’s COVID Response: “Worse Than We Could Have Imagined”
      • Alameda County Jail to Start Coronavirus Testing for Staff

        Santa Rita jail in Alameda County plans to implement COVID-19 testing for staff this week in response to the region’s recent surge in cases. On-site testing was previously not available to staff.

        The implementation of regular, weekly testing for staff follows a large coronavirus surge in the jail at the end of last year, where cases jumped from five to more than 100 in one week.

        The jail currently reports seven cases among inmates and two among staff, but advocates for incarcerated people say low testing rates may be masking more cases.

        “We feel that soon the sheriff is going to claim, as they have before, that they’ve controlled this outbreak when all they’ve really done is just stop seeing it,” said Lina Garcia Schmidt, a member of the San Francisco chapter of the National Lawyers Guild.

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Pseudo-Open Source

        • Security

          • Go read this report about the US military endangering passenger jets by blocking GPS

            The military is carrying out the testing, ironically, to help develop technology to counteract GPS jamming. To be fair, it’s an understandable goal, as the article details the troubles that pilots face when a technology they heavily rely on goes away. But when that happens, the pilot at least has visual cues and other instruments. The article also goes into how, instead of completely cutting out the pilot’s GPS signal, the testing can end up feeding the pilot incorrect information, leading to thinking they’re somewhere they’re not.

            Each tangent the article goes on reveals worrying new details, like how pilots are warned that testing may be happening, often leading to smooth flights and a “Chicken Little” situation where pilots have heard false warnings so many times that they’re not prepared for when it actually happens. There are also hints that the problem may be happening more often than even the Federal Aviation Administration realized.

          • Powershell Dropping a REvil Ransomware

            This is a classic bypass for logging and AV detection[3]. Then, a second RunSpace is started: [...]

          • World Economic Forum pegs cybersecurity failure as a major global risk [iophk: Windows TCO]

            Against such sophisticated threats, the vast majority of defenders don’t stand a chance, Clements added. “It’s often shocking to the security professionals tasked with protecting an organization and its data just how easy it is to bypass or defeat security controls like antivirus or how fast attackers can crack passwords,” he said.

          • Department of Defense appoints John Sherman as acting CIO

            The Department of Defense (DoD) has replaced outgoing CIO Dana Deasy with deputy CIO John Sherman, who will head up the DoD’s cloud strategy until a long-term replacement is in place.

            Sherman, who’s served as the deputy CIO at the DoD since June 2020, steps into the role Deasy left as America welcomed the Biden administration. Before that, Sherman was the intelligence community CIO, where he began in 2017 coordinating IT modernization across 17 agencies. From 2014 to 2017, he was the Deputy Director of the CIA’s Open Source Enterprise (OSE). In his role, Sherman enhanced the CIA’s open-source intelligence (OSINT) initiative.

            He’s also served at the National Geospatial Intelligence Agency (NGA) and was the Deputy National Intelligence Officer for Military Issues on the National Intelligence Council.

          • Thanks for the data, suckers: How information insecurity endangers Russian Railways passengers and risks prison for the company’s I.T. workers

            On January 13, a hacker dubbed “LMonoceros” posted proof that he broke into the private network of Russian Railways (RZD) and accessed surveillance from cameras at train stations, on railway platforms, along rail tracks, and inside company offices. RZD employees contacted the hacker and together they patched the weakness in the network. This isn’t the first time Russian Railways has had problems with information security: In the past year and a half, the personal information of 700,000 employees and 1.3 million passengers has leaked, and the Wi-Fi aboard highspeed Sapsan trains was hacked in just 20 minutes. Meduza explains how RZD security problems threaten company employees.

          • What is a Distributed Denial of Service Attack? | TheITstuff

            What is a Distributed Denial of Service Attack? also termed DDos Attack. The question is very common among computer or programming students who are learning about hacking techniques. This question is also asked by willing to be a white hat hacker one day. If you have the same question as well, let’s understand what this is.

            Disclaimer – I will be simplifying the DDoS process massively in this article just to give you an outline of the DDoS attacks. In reality, the DDoS attacks can be extremely complicated. After every DDoS attack, a team of engineers sit together and check logs of all network devices to figure out how the attack happened.

          • IPFire is Open Source software, and it going to be Open Source for forever

            I feel that this is a pledge that needs repeating since many projects have recently turned their backs at Open Source software. Here is a quick ready why this is very dangerous to the future of the internet.

            I am seriously concerned about the future of the Open Source eco system. Times are tough. The world is battling a pandemic and many companies are in trouble. Some have already shut down, others are close to that and that is a very bad thing in its own right.

            Low confidence in business causes that people might be more likely to be made redundant and obviously having a little bit of money on the side would help you sleeping better in the night. But if that money would come from software that you have been developing as a hobby or slightly more than that, I can only tell you: Do not be greedy.

          • Security updates for Friday

            Security updates have been issued by Debian (drupal7), Fedora (dotnet3.1), Gentoo (zabbix), openSUSE (ImageMagick and python-autobahn), and SUSE (hawk2 and wavpack).

          • Fear, Uncertainty, Doubt/Fear-mongering/Dramatisation

            • DreamBus, FreakOut Botnets Pose New Threat to Linux… [Ed: How to blame on "Linux" things that have nothing to do with Linux and boil down to negligent or incompetent sysadmins mismanaging things that aren't even Linux]
            • DreamBus Botnet Targets Linux Systems

              Zscaler’s ThreatLabz research team is tracking a new botnet dubbed DreamBus that’s installing the XMRig cryptominer on powerful enterprise-class Linux and Unix systems with the goal of using their computing power to mine monero.

            • Hazardous fresh malware marks unpatched Linux machines [Ed: Linux may be patched; the problem is not Linux at all and it is dishonest to blame this on Linux]

              Security investigators files report on a fresh malware that marks inadequately configured computer desktops to wrap them into a botnet, that can subsequently be utilized for scandalous objectives or any violations.

              As per the reports of the Check Point Research (a.k.a CPR), the malware type, called FreakOut, precisely preys Linux embedded machines that operate unpatched editions of specific application on desktop.

            • DreamBus Botnet Targets Linux Systems [Ed: No, it targets unpatched software that is not Linux]
          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • Flo Period App Gets A Wrist Slap For Sharing Private Health Data

              Another day, another privacy scandal where the penalties do virtually nothing to prevent history from repeating itself. This time the focus is on the Flo Period period and fertility tracking app, which has struck an arguably pathetic deal with the Federal Trade Commission over allegations that it lied to app users about sharing private health information with third-party firms, including Facebook and Google. According to the complaint and settlement, Flo informed the app’s users that customer data would be “kept private.” Instead, Flo sold consumer data, including the dates of user periods and their pregnancy plans with third parties:

            • Democrats urge tech giants to change algorithms that facilitate spread of extremist content

              “Online disinformation is not just about removing bad content. I see it as largely a product design issue. The algorithmic amplification and recommendation systems that platforms employ spread content that’s evocative over what’s true,” Eshoo said in a statement.

            • 14 items of office equipment replaced by iPhone

              All these tools and functions are now wrapped up inside a device even Steve Jobs thought did just three things.

            • Oversight Board Agrees To Review Facebook’s Trump Suspension

              On Thursday morning, the Oversight Board (you’re apparently not supposed to call it the “Facebook Oversight Board” since it’s — theoretically — independent) announced that it had agreed to review Facebook’s decision to indefinitely suspend former President Donald Trump.

            • Facebook’s Oversight Board to rule on Trump ban

              The company set up the board, which it says is independent, last year, to rule on controversial moderation decisions.

              Mr Trump, whose account was frozen “indefinitely” on 7 January, will be able to submit a user statement to a five-member case-review panel.

              Its ruling will be binding and apply to Instagram also. Twitter has already given Mr Trump an outright ban.

    • Defence/Aggression

      • ‘A Hugely Consequential First Move’: Biden Offers to Extend Nuclear START Treaty With Russia

        “After four years of efforts to kill arms control and chase the false security of nuclear dominance, the U.S. is coming back to its senses,” said one peace activist. “Unless you’re a defense contractor, this is good news for everyone.”

      • Knock Yourself Out

        Strap on your Advanced Combat Helmet constructed of a thermoset resin shell bonded to Kevlar as you take a ride in a Humvee along some benighted highway in some godforsaken place on the other side of the world…

        Suddenly, there is a low “pow,” and a dull thump in the center of your chest. Your vehicle has just rolled over an IED (Improvised Explosive Device), triggering a “primary blast effect” or shock wave, a balloon of rapidly expanding gases that compresses the surrounding air and moves outward from the detonation faster than the speed of sound. This shock wave enters your brain, passing so rapidly that it has come and gone before you have even had time to move your head. But in this blink of time it has forever disrupted the connections between your brain cells.

      • Opinion | A New Day for Human Survival: On the Promise of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons

        “Human beings and nuclear weapons cannot coexist.”

      • The Rubble of Empire

        Directly across the street, I can see a collection of tarps and poles (along with one of my own garbage cans) that were used to construct a makeshift home on the sidewalk. Beside that edifice stands a wooden cross decorated with a string of white Christmas lights and a red ribbon — a memorial to the woman who built that structure and died inside it earlier this week. We don’t know — and probably never will — what killed her: the pandemic raging across California? A heart attack? An overdose of heroin or fentanyl?

        Behind her home and similar ones is a chain-link fence surrounding the empty playground of the Horace Mann/Buena Vista elementary and middle school. Like that home, the school, too, is now empty, closed because of the pandemic. I don’t know where the families of the 20 children who attended that school and lived in one of its gyms as an alternative to the streets have gone. They used to eat breakfast and dinner there every day, served on the same sidewalk by a pair of older Latina women who apparently had a contract from the school district to cook for the families using that school-cum-shelter. I don’t know, either, what any of them are now doing for money or food.

      • About Suffering: A Massacre of the Innocents in Yemen

        Were Bruegel’s anti-war theme updated to convey images of child slaughter today, a remote Yemeni village could be the focus. Soldiers performing the slaughter wouldn’t arrive on horseback. Today, they often are Saudi pilots trained to fly U.S.-made warplanes over civilian locales and then launch laser-guided missiles (sold by Raytheon, Boeing and Lockheed Martin), to disembowel, decapitate, maim, or kill anyone in the path of the blast and exploding shards.

        For more than five years, Yemenis have faced near-famine conditions while enduring a naval blockade and routine aerial bombardment. The United Nations estimates the war has already caused 233,000 deaths, including 131,000 deaths from indirect causes such as lack of food, health services and infrastructure.

      • Cuba, Hip Hop and American Imperialism

        On November 9, 2020, Cuban rapper Denis Solis was arrested for “contempt” in the San Isidro neighborhood where artists and musicians had begun using social media to protest attacks on their right to free expression. The New York Times article on the arrest links to a Facebook video made by Solis while a cop was in his apartment. Lacking subtitles, it is not easy to make sense of the confrontation. I can assure you that Solis calls the cop a maricon, the Spanish equivalent of “faggot”. I also invite you to pay special attention to what Solis says at 3:10 into the video, namely his support for Donald Trump. Even the Times found this impossible to ignore:

        Each time Cuba is denounced as an enemy of human rights, Farber joins Human Rights Watch, the liberal media, and the Cuban counter-revolutionary movement in Miami in singling out Cuba as the most undemocratic country in the Western Hemisphere. In the Spectre article titled “The Criminalization of Opposition Politics in Cuba: AGAINST THE SOVIET MODEL” (hysterical upper case in the original), Farber argues that even Fulgencio Batista was more democratic than the current government. He made sure that political prisoners had an autonomy that common criminals did not. So did the Czar.

      • Trump’s Parting Gift to the NRA

        It is fitting to ask, why would an agency whose mission is to “preserve and protect” our nation’s wildlife assist the NRA in recruiting more hunters?  The answer is simple. The number of hunters in all states have steadily declined since 1982 when they peaked at 17 million. Today only 4% of the population hunts. In contrast, some 86 million people participated in wildlife watching, an estimated 20 percent increase just from 2011 to 2016.

        Which means those remaining hunters—most of which are white men, including Trump’s own trophy-hunting children—find their political influence declining as well.  Growing the number of hunters is a shameless attempt to protect what remains of their influence at the cost of protecting wildlife.

      • Opinion | Peering Into a Forever-War Crystal Ball

        A Bidenesque tour of America’s regional and global military adventures.

      • Mob v. Crowd: the Mass Psychology of Madness

        The January 6 demonstrators had and still have a leader—Donald Trump. They had a directive from him that didn’t spell out everything in detail, but that provided a framework for protesters to use their imaginations and to get creative. “Be there, will be wild!” Mr. Trump wrote. He seems to have wanted to have a riot and eat it, too: incite and cover his own ass.  After all, he retreated to the White House after he made his inflammatory remarks.

        Mobs have often been described as “wild.” They are linked in popular culture to “the wild Irish” and to “wild Indians,” two phrases used by British colonizers who invaded and occupied other lands and sought to “civilize” the inhabitants, and exterminate them, too.

      • Mob mentality: Capitol riot exploited to expand the national security state that failed to stop it
      • Arizona Prosecutors Pretend ‘ACAB’ Is Gang Lingo To Hit Protesters With Felony Gang Charges

        This is how the law enforcement community has responded to nationwide complaints that they do their jobs poorly, violently, and abusively: by doing their jobs poorly, violently, and abusively.

      • 135 Civil Rights Groups Oppose New Domestic Terrorism Statutes, Say Tackle Far-Right Violence With Existing Laws

        “Members of Congress should not reinforce counterterrorism policies, programs, and frameworks that are rooted in bias, discrimination, and denial or diminution of fundamental rights like due process.”

      • Newly-elected GOP members deny giving “reconnaissance” tours before Capitol attack. So who did?

        Speculation about the newly-elected far-right Republican members escalated after Rep. Mikie Sherrill, D-N.J., made the explosive claim that she had seen a fellow member giving what she described as a “reconnaissance” tour the day before the deadly attack. Thirty of her Democratic colleagues later signed on to a letter notifying the acting House sergeant at arms that some of them had noticed “unusually large groups of people throughout the Capitol” on Jan. 5, which they say could only happen with the help of a member of Congress or staff. Some of the people in those groups, the letter says, appeared to be connected to the following day’s Stop the Steal rally, and the writers add that attackers seemed to have “an unusually detailed knowledge” of the building’s complicated layout. The group has requested visitor logs and security camera footage from Jan. 5, and, pointedly, want to know whether law enforcement has also tried to access visitor information.

    • Transparency/Investigative Reporting

      • Enough with the Damn Secrets! Open Up the Government Joe!

        That is not the question Biden should be considering. Rather, he should be opening up about government secrets with the American public, who for far too long have been kept increasingly in the dark.

        The truth is that over the years, especially since the end of World War II, with President Harry Truman’s establishment of a “national security state” and the launching of the Cold War, the United states, though commonly referred to in our national mythology, in speeches by politicians and in the media as “the world’s greatest democracy” is actually a bureaucratic state with secrets so deep, dark and wide-spread  that, as Daniel Ellsberg reveals in his latest book The Doomsday Machine, even the president and the secretary of defense for generations haven’t been told the  incomprehensibly fratro-genocidal details of the war plans that the nation would follow in the event of a nuclear conflict with China or Russia.

    • Environment

    • Finance

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • EFF’s Top Recommendations for the Biden Administration

        The tradition of a peaceful transfer of power is as old as the United States itself. But by the time most of us see this transition on January 20th, it is mostly ceremonial. The real work of a transition begins months before, usually even before Election Day, when presidential candidates start thinking about key hires, policy goals, and legislative challenges. After the election, the Presidential Transition Act provides the president-elect’s team with government resources to lay the foundation for the new Administration’s early days in office. Long before the inauguration ceremony, the president-elect’s team also organizes meetings with community leaders, activists, and non-profits like EFF during this time, to hear about our priorities for the incoming Administration.

        In anticipation of these meetings, EFF prepared a transition memo for the incoming Biden administration, outlining our recommendations for how it should act to protect everyone’s civil liberties in a digital world. While we hope to work with the new Administration on a wide range of policies that affect digital rights in the coming years, this memo focuses on the areas that need the Administration’s immediate attention. In many cases, we ask that the Biden Administration change course from the previous policies and practices.

        We look forward to working with the new Biden Administration and the new Congress to implement these important ideas and safeguards.

      • “The Work Continues”: Cornel West & Maria Hinojosa on the Promise & Dangers of the Biden Admin

        We host a wide-ranging discussion of the historic inauguration of President Joe Biden and Kamala Harris — the first-ever woman, South Asian and Black vice president — how we got here, and what comes next, with award-winning journalist Maria Hinojosa and author and Harvard professor Cornel West. Hinojosa says she had “mixed emotions” watching the inauguration, her sense of hope tempered by memories of the Obama administration. “We all had these extraordinary expectations, and then things didn’t turn out that way,” she says. “The work continues.” West says that while getting Trump out of office was vital, he is still suspicious “of the capitulation to the neoliberal greed and lies and hatred, now that we’ve pushed back the neofascist forms of greed and lies and hatred.” On his first day in office, President Biden ended many of the Trump administration’s anti-immigrant policies. Hinojosa says parts of this agenda are promising, but lack urgency. “In eight years, there could be a new administration. Everybody knows that,” she says. “Do you understand that if you were to do massive immigration reform right now … what that would do to boost the American economy across the board?”

      • “Democracy Has Prevailed”: Joe Biden Sworn In as President; Kamala Harris Becomes First Female VP

        Joe Biden was sworn in as 46th president of the United States Wednesday, ending the Trump era with a call for national unity and urging Americans to come together during a period of turbulence. President Biden signed 17 executive orders in his first official act from the Oval Office, including on immigration, the pandemic and the climate crisis. Biden has promised more executive actions in the coming days. Vice President Kamala Harris swore in three new Democratic senators Wednesday afternoon, giving Democrats narrow control of the Senate and laying the groundwork for the administration’s ambitious agenda. We play highlights from the day.

      • In Must-See Clip, Democrats Told to End Era in Which ‘Only the Bad Guys Understand They’re in a Fight’

        “Democrats are in a fight; they just often don’t act like they know it,” says analyst Anand Giridharadas. “That has to change if this country is to be saved and Biden is to have a shot.”

      • The Trump/Biden Handoff: Business as Usual, as Usual

        Some might, however,  be surprised to at how closely Biden’s administration will likely resemble outgoing President Donald Trump’s, both personnel- and policy-wise. The new boss looks a lot like the old boss, minus a flair for the melodramatic. And the old boss looked a lot like the older boss, too.

        Trump’s 2016 campaign, and his actions in office, were a classic case of multiple personality disorder.

      • Imprisoned for his eyebrows Based on anonymous testimony, a Moscow court sentenced an anarchist mathematician to six years behind bars over a broken window

        Moscow’s Golovinsky District Court recently sentenced mathematician and anarchist Azat Miftakhov to six years in prison for his alleged role in an attack against a campaign office that belongs to United Russia, the country’s ruling political party. Two other suspects, Elena Gorban and Andrey Yeikin, pleaded guilty and received probation, but Miftakhov maintains his innocence. Prosecutors based their case largely on the testimony of a secret witness who allegedly recognized the mathematician “by his eyebrows.” Meduza special correspondent Kristina Safonova recounts the trial’s final proceedings.

      • Opinion | Democracy as Dignity

        Dispersions of power, transparency, and mutual accountability.

      • ‘A Good First Step’: Senators File Ethics Complaint Over Cruz and Hawley’s Role in Capitol Insurrection

        The move by a group of Democrats comes as demands are building for the two Republicans to be ousted from the Senate over the deadly attack.

      • ‘A Good Way to Unite the Country,’ Says Watchdog, ‘Would Be to Convict and Prosecute Donald Trump’

        “He’s no longer president,” said another group, “but accountability isn’t over.”

      • Police arrest Navalny’s associates in Moscow ahead of planned opposition rallies

        Following widespread reports of police officers issuing warnings to opposition figures and activists across Russia, law enforcement officials in Moscow have arrested several of Alexey Navalny’s closest associates. This comes ahead of countrywide protests opposing his detention planned for Saturday, January 23. On the evening of January 21, police detained the opposition figure’s press secretary, Kira Yarmysh, as well as Anti-Corruption Foundation employees Lyubov Sobol, Georgy Alburov, and Vladlen Los. Similar arrests have also been reported in three other cities so far.

      • European Parliament demands sanctions against Putin’s inner circle and Russian oligarchs over Navalny’s detention

        The European Parliament has adopted a resolution calling on EU member states to “significantly strengthen” sanctions against Russia and stop work on completing the Nord Stream 2 pipeline in response to the arrest of opposition figure Alexey Navalny. 

      • Preventative measures Russian opposition activists face official crackdown ahead of planned protests in support of Navalny

        Immediately after opposition figure Alexey Navalny was remanded in custody on January 18, his team called for countrywide rallies the following Saturday to protest his detention. Since then, the Russian authorities have been taking preventative measures to stop the demonstrations. On January 20 and 21, law enforcement officers began showing up at the homes of opposition figures, activists, and journalists across Russia to issue warnings from state prosecutors against participating in the rallies. Meanwhile, Russia’s censorship agency has orders to block online content containing calls for demonstrations. And in some parts of the country, the local authorities are already handing out fines and launching criminal investigations over protests that have yet to take place. 

      • Opposition figure Lyubov Sobol arrested in Moscow for inciting protests

        Police officers in Moscow have arrested opposition figure Lyubov Sobol, who works for Alexey Navalny’s Anti–Corruption Foundation. This was confirmed by the independent television network Dozhd. Sobol’s arrest was first reported by her lawyer, Vladimir Voronin.

      • Russian state censor ordered to block websites containing calls to join protests in support of Navalny

        The Russian Attorney General’s Office has ordered Roskomnadzor (the state censorship agency) to restrict access to websites containing calls for participation “in illegal rallies on January 23,” reports RIA Novosti, citing the department’s press service.

      • Biden’s First Day Was a Good Sign — Let’s Keep Up the Pressure
      • Biden Bans White House Staff From Becoming Lobbyists for 2 Years After Leaving
      • Forget About ‘100 Days.’ These Are the 10 Days That Will Define Biden’s Presidency.

        Joe Biden knows he must work harder and faster than any president since Franklin Delano Roosevelt to restore the confidence of the American people in a government that his predecessor rendered dysfunctional in the face of a pandemic, turned against Americans who cried out for racial justice, and, finally, attacked by inciting his supporters to storm the Capitol on January 6. Biden recognized his responsibility with an inaugural address that announced, “We’ll press forward with speed and urgency for we have much to do in this winter of peril and significant possibilities. Much to repair, much to restore, much to heal, much to build, and much to gain.”

      • Trump Has Left the Building, but the Foundations Are Still in Place

        After a series of far-fetched legal attempts to overturn the election, capped by a shocking assault on the Capitol, it appears the Trump period has ended. On the day of the Capitol attack, Trump addressed his supporters, claiming, “You’ll never take back our country with weakness. You have to show strength and you have to be strong.… If you don’t fight like hell, you’re not going to have a country anymore.” Two days later, in the midst of a furious and widespread backlash, Trump was forced to walk back his belligerent attitude, giving an anodyne speech where he called for peace, asserting that “those who engaged in the acts of violence and destruction…do not represent our country,” and all but conceding that a transition of power would take place. It now has.

      • Trump’s European Orphans

        After just over a decade of the presidency of Václav Havel, who saw love and truth as the cures for the mentality just described, and who exercised a great deal of influence over other post-communist countries, there has been a return to politicians who base their policies on lies and hatred. When I visit my native city or any of the four countries that make up the Visegrád Group, I get a feeling of déjà vu.

        Over the last four years, the political leaders of this foursome, also known as V4, enjoyed the support of Donald Trump. Under his influence, their slanderous, hate-filled campaigns have become more toxic than ever.

      • McConnell Is Holding Up the Senate to Protect the Filibuster
      • Kevin McCarthy Wrongly Claims He Never Voted Against Overturning Biden’s Win
      • Biden Must Face the Facts: Israel Is an Apartheid Regime

        In a position paper released January 12, the Israeli human rights group B’Tselem broke with its own tradition and stated unambiguously that the area comprising Israel, the West Bank, and Gaza Strip is an apartheid regime of Jewish supremacy.

      • Will Kamala Do the Right Thing?

        What is particularly poignant for young mothers of biracial kids like hers, is the hope that Kamala’s ascension to the second most powerful position in the country’s leadership, will simultaneously mitigate the anti-Black racism within the South Asian community. Thus, when Sharda Sekaran, a “Blindian” (Black and Indian) young woman interviewed for a recent essay in The Lily that my daughter sent me this morning, interprets Kamala Harris’ election as “a validation of the identity I’ve had to fight for”— how can one not feel elated at the prospect of people like my own darling granddaughter growing up feeling similarly empowered in their identities as Black South Asians for the first time in US history? How can I deny that as a Pakistani immigrant myself, I’ve not seen the anti-black prejudice that one associates largely, if not exclusively with white supremacy, also prevalent in my own “desi”- American community?But the question that doesn’t get raised in these expressions of delight at having one’s “identity” now represented at the highest levels of officialdom, is whether having a “Blindian” woman as Vice President is enough of a victory against the forces of regression. The title of the recent article in The Lily, “Kamala Harris has elevated the Blindian community: ‘It’s a validation of the identity I’ve had to fight for’” —begs the question, is the “validation” that may come from seeing a Black and Desi woman “elevated” to high office really worth all the excitement and anticipation? In other words, is identity politics at the level of representation enough, by itself?

        I’m old enough to remember first hand a similar excitement many of us who were new immigrants from countries of the global South like Pakistan, felt when the Reverend Jesse Jackson created his National Rainbow Coalition as a platform for his 1984 presidential run. Just having an African American running for the Presidency generated such a sense of pride and excitement in communities of color, with which I felt a sense of affinity. But this affinity went far beyond race and ethnic identity, and therefore represented something different from that which Kamala Harris evokes. After all, I was neither Black nor male. Having grown up as a child of the Bandung era, motivated by ideologies of transnational solidarity that socialist or left-leaning progressive leaders such as Sukarno, Nehru, Nasser stood for in the so-called Third World, Jackson to me, and to others of my ilk, represented a bridge to those international forebears, including to the two African Americans who attended the Bandung Conference of 1955 as observers, Richard Wright and Adam Clayton Powell.  Jackson’s appointment in 1966 by the Rev Martin Luther King Jr, to serve as the first director of Operation Breadbasket in Chicago, itself an offshoot of the Rainbow PUSH Coalition which was the product of a social justice movement that grew out of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, linked Jackson to King’s own radical agenda and internationalist understanding of the intersectional roots of racial, economic and social injustice. This oppression that his movement sought to dismantle at home, in the USA, was an oppression that King, as well as other civil rights leaders, came to understand as linked to similar injustices faced by brown and black peoples everywhere. Building allyship and solidarity, people like King and later Jackson,  drew inspiration from those fighting similar injustices against the scourge of racialized colonialism in their own countries, and it was this transnational solidarity of purpose that drew youngsters like me to their brand of struggle. To progressive minded folks of my generation, that idea of a political coalition, which invited people of all identities, races, genders, classes and religions to band together to push for a justice-oriented social and economic agenda, one that could counter the racist effects of the conservative era of Reaganomics, was the need of the moment. The concept that appealed to us was “affiliative politics” rather than simply “identity politics.” It was clear to us that just because someone was Black or Brown, didn’t mean s/he subscribed to the Bandung era vision of a world united around progressive values.

      • An Exceptional History of an Unexceptional United States

        How to understand the United States in today’s globalized world? Is it possible to interpret United States’ history from a global perspective?

        “The United States is not a hegemon,” former Secretary of State John Kerry testily responded to a question about its declining world status in Geneva in 2017. Not a hegemon? Not an empire? While it is easy to understand the Kerry’s reluctance to use terms like hegemon or empire to describe the U.S., one can argue that there have been moments in history – 1898, 1918, post 1945, post 1989 – when the United States certainly resembled an empire.

      • Opinion | Countering the Fascism To Come

        Perhaps the racism and craziness are stunning enough for Biden to realize that centrist cliches and corporate obeisance are no longer adequate counters. They no longer hold their own against the possibility of fascism to come.

      • Cornel West and Maria Hinojosa Discuss Promise and Dangers of the Biden Admin
      • Pelosi Responds to Claims that Trump Impeachment Goes Against Calls for “Unity”
      • Kyrie Irving Does Not Have to Be Who You Want Him to Be

        There is an old expression from revolutionary Rosa Luxemburg: “Those who do not move, do not notice their chains.” This quote rattles in the back of my mind as NBA commentators and fans rage against Brooklyn Nets guard Kyrie Irving. He is choosing to move, and by doing so, revealing the realities of restraints.

      • Judge refuses to reinstate Parler’s Amazon account
      • Judge Easily Rejects Parler’s Demands To Have Amazon Reinstate Parler

        As was totally expected, US district court judge, Barbara Jacobs Rothstein, has handily rejected Parler’s motion to force Amazon to turn Parler’s digital lights back on. The order is pretty short and sweet, basically saying that Parler hasn’t even remotely shown a likelihood of success in the case that would lead to having the court order Amazon to take the social media site back.

      • Let Nobody Ever State Again There Is No Evidence of the Conspiracy Against Alex Salmond
      • Parler Faces ‘Difficulties’ as Amazon Wins Early Court Fight

        Parler LLC failed to convince a judge to order Amazon.com Inc. to immediately resume hosting the social media platform popular with conservatives, leaving it hobbled while it relies on a Russian-owned service for a bare-bones web presence.

        Thursday’s ruling is a significant blow for the site that found its niche as a voice for aggrieved Donald Trump supporters and right-wing dialog. It’s a victory for critics including Amazon who say Parler has proved incapable of policing violent content, particularly in the period leading up to and following the Jan. 6 mob attack on the Capitol.

      • DDoS-Guard To Forfeit Internet Space Occupied by Parler

        Suspecting that DDoS-Guard incorporated in Belize on paper just to get huge swaths of IP addresses that are supposed to be given only to entities with a physical presence in the region, Guilmette filed a complaint with the Internet registry about his suspicions back in November.

        Guilmette said LACNIC told him it would investigate, and that any adjudication on the matter could take up to three months. But earlier this week, LACNIC published a notice on its website that it intends to revoke 8,192 IPv4 addresses from DDoS-Guard — including the Internet address currently assigned to Parler[.]com.

      • The anticipated violence at Biden’s inauguration never happened — thank Trump’s Twitter ban

        There’s a number of reasons that Inauguration Day ended up being relatively peaceful.

        For one thing, legal authorities took the threat seriously and took significant preventive action. For another, the mass arrests of the insurrections by federal law enforcement sent a signal that the impunity that Trump supporters were feeling was misplaced. But most importantly, the main driver of insurrectionist sentiment and the man who instigated the Capitol riot — Donald Trump — wasn’t on hand to incite more violence.

      • Facebook’s Oversight Board to Decide Whether Trump Keeps Account

        The Oversight Board, made up of high-profile academics, lawyers and others from around the world, was established by Facebook last year to provide a check on the tech giant’s power, reviewing cases that could change the company’s broader approach to policy. The panel has also been asked to make recommendations on Facebook’s policies with regards to world leaders, who have been given more room to break rules on the platform because of public interest in what they say. Trump’s accounts on Facebook and Instagram were suspended on Jan. 6 following the violent riots at the U.S. Capitol. Trump has since been permanently banned from Twitter Inc.’s social media service.

        Trump will have an opportunity to write a letter contesting his indefinite ban. The board will convene a panel of five of its members, who won’t be identified, to review the decision and see if it aligns with Facebook’s community standards and overall principles of human rights and free expression, according to the statement. The decision, which needs to be approved by the entire board, will take as long as 90 days, and will be made public.

      • Judge Rejects Parler’s Bid to Force Amazon to Host Pro-Trump App

        “The court rejects any suggestion that the public interest favors requiring AWS to host the incendiary speech that the record shows some of Parler’s users have engaged in,” the judge wrote in the ruling. “At this stage, on the showing made thus far, neither the public interest nor the balance of equities favors granting an injunction in this case.”

        In addition, Rothstein rejected Parler’s allegation that Amazon colluded with Twitter to force the app offline. “Parler has submitted no evidence that AWS and Twitter acted together intentionally — or even at all — in restraint of trade,” she wrote.

      • The US Empire Is Crumbling Before Our Eyes

        What do any of these very local sights have to do with a crumbling empire? They’re signs that some of the same factors that fractured the Roman empire back in 476 CE (and others since) are distinctly present in this country today—even in California, one of its richest states. I’m talking about phenomena like gross economic inequality; over-spending on military expansion; political corruption; deep cultural and political fissures; and, oh yes, the barbarians at the gates. I’ll turn to those factors in a moment, but first let me offer a brief defense of the very suggestion that US imperialism and an American empire actually exist.

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • FOSS Patents: Subjectiveness of app reviews: Viral Leaders Trump & Johnson (satirical fun game) approved by Google, inexplicably found objectionable by Apple

        One of the issues raised in the Coronavirus Reporter v. Apple antitrust complaint in the District of New Hampshire is the allegation that Apple’s app reviews are “arbitrary and capricious” to the extent that one app might be rejected though a similar or more problematic app is approved. I’ve also heard people say this about Google, and I can prove at least an inconsistency with respect to the application of its rule on COVID-related metadata, where a game is allowed to use the term “pandemic” in its Google Play Store description though this is expressly prohibited by Google unless an app is (co-)published by a governmental or recognized healthcare entity, which isn’t the case.

        Some criticize Apple and Google for collecting 30% of some companies’ in-app revenues while others get a free ride even though, as those critics argue, they should be subjected to that “app store tax” as well. I haven’t formed an opinion on that assertion yet, but it wouldn’t surprise me if it was true.

      • Google signs French deal to pay newspapers for snippets

        French authorities have signed an agreement with Google for the search company to pay publishers for the use of news snippets in search results.

      • Google threatens to remove its search engine from Australia if new law goes into effect

        The company, which has been lobbying against Australia’s plan for months, claims the country is trying to make it pay to show links and snippets to news stories in Google Search, not just for news articles features in places like Google News, saying it “would set an untenable precedent for our business, and the digital economy” and that it’s “not compatible with how search engines work.”

      • Google threatens to disable search in Australia if media code becomes law

        Google says it will stop making its search function available in Australia if Parliament passes the Morrison government’s proposed laws to force it and Facebook to pay news businesses for their journalism.

        Google Australia managing director Mel Silva told a Senate hearing on Friday the proposed news media bargaining code remained “unworkable”, and the company was prepared to exit the Australian market.

      • Google Threatens to Remove Search in Australia as Spat Escalates

        Google threatened to disable its search engine in Australia if it’s forced to pay local publishers for news, a dramatic escalation of a months-long standoff with the government.

        The proposed law, intended to compensate publishers for the value their stories generate for the company, is “unworkable,” Mel Silva, managing director for Australia and New Zealand, told a parliamentary hearing Friday. She specifically opposed the requirement that Google pay media companies for displaying snippets of articles in search results.

      • The First Amendment Is Interpreted by the Courts, not Tech Companies

        Notably missing from these arguments, however, is citation to authority approving the use of Facebook or Twitter’s community standards in analyzing whether the First Amendment is infringed. The Court declines the invitation to do so here. The First Amendment is interpreted by the courts, not tech companies.

      • Academic calls for press boycott over cancellation of Thai book

        It had been due to be published by NUS Press, but the publisher reversed course in March 2020. Criticism of the monarchy is illegal in Thailand because of lèse-majesté laws.

        The title was subsequently picked up by Yale University’s Council on Southeast Asia Studies and released in December 2020.

        Now that the book is out, Dr Pavin has appealed to NUS to investigate the decision-making behind his case. He also called for other academics to refrain from submitting to or conducting peer review for NUS Press, but stressed that he was not asking for a boycott of the publisher’s titles, because he did not wish to “harm other scholars”.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • Adding To Its Long List Of Arrested Deputies, Polk County Sheriff Arrests Deputy For Capitol-Related Threats

        Another law enforcement officer has lost his job after being unable to accept the outcome of a national election. Lots of officers around the nation are under investigation for their participation in the Capitol Hill raid earlier this month. There’s another name to add to that long list — one who used to work for one of the worst law enforcement officials in the county, Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd. (h/t WarOnPrivacy)

      • “The Hill We Climb”: Watch Breathtaking Poem by Amanda Gorman, Youngest Inaugural Poet in U.S. History

        One of the most remarkable moments from Wednesday’s inauguration ceremony came from poet Amanda Gorman, the youngest poet in U.S. history to speak at a presidential inauguration. The 22 year-old read “The Hill We Climb,” a poem she finished right after the riot at the Capitol earlier this month. We feature her full recitation and get reaction from scholar Cornel West and award-winning journalist Maria Hinojosa.

      • Two Principles of Racial Equity that Outrage Liberals

        In University City, one of the oldest and more progressive suburbs of St. Louis, much happened during the upsurges of 2020. During the spring and summer, multiple Black Lives Matter protests made their way though U City. In July, the Green Party of St. Louis (GPSL) teamed up with the Universal African Peoples Organization (UAPO), Tauheed Youth Organization and Beloved Streets of America to hold a press conference at the steps of City Hall which demanded that Delmar Blvd be renamed “George Floyd Divide.” In August, Teens Taking Action St. Louis (TTAStL) from U City High School organized their own demonstration. In December GPSL, UAPO and TTAStL co-sponsored a Zoom webinar to address the symbols of domination which are embodied in statues and the names of streets, parks and schools.

        A major theme in that webinar was how symbolic changes interact with material changes in income distribution, medical care, housing, education and policing. Material changes affect and are affected by conscious awareness. When people see street signs and statues named after racists, it contributes to the belief that racism remains as it has been. But changes in the symbols of oppression both encourage challenges to material reality and are empowered by struggles for improvement in the quality of life.

      • FirstLadyology: The Role Has Long Been a Lose-Lose Proposition

        When Ruth Bader Ginsberg was appointed to the US Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, she and her husband, Marty, moved to Washington, D.C., where Marty was often asked at cocktail parties about his commute. People assumed that he still worked in New York, because who had ever heard of a man giving up a job in service to his wife’s career? In fact, Marty—a successful tax attorney in his own right—not only got a new job but actively lobbied for his wife’s promotion to the Supreme Court. He also took care of the home front, not because Ruth was negligent, but because no one liked her cooking. Her talents lay elsewhere, and Marty was disinclined to eat bad food. Far from feeling diminished, he radiated pride in their partnership, writing to her on his death bed, “I have admired and loved you almost since the day we first met at Cornell some 56 years ago. What a treat it has been to watch you progress to the very top of the legal world.”

      • Still Can’t Breathe

        The New York Police Department patrol guide is clear about chokeholds: They are prohibited and have been since 1993 because they can kill, as the 2014 death of Eric Garner iconically illustrated. Yet six years after a now-infamous video captured him pleading, “I can’t breathe,” NYPD cops are still being caught on camera performing the dangerous move with the tacit acceptance — and sometimes, explicit approval — of department leaders.

        In July 2018, Detective Fabio Nunez approached 33-year-old Tomas Medina after hearing loud music on the streets of Inwood in upper Manhattan and demanded to see his identification to write him a summons for the noise. Medina said he had none, then kept arguing with the officer about whether the summons was necessary. When Medina tried to walk away, Nunez put him in a chokehold that lasted more than 20 seconds and tased him multiple times.

      • Advocates Hail Biden Executive Order on LGBTQ Rights as the Most Far-Reaching in US History

        Human Rights Campaign applauded the directive as “a turning point in our fight for equality under the law.”

      • Police Obedience and Racialization

        In the previous article about “Police Use of Force,” the following was established:

        §  When the public calls for minimum use of force by the police, the police not only resist, but increase their violence against the people.

      • Off-duty police were part of Capitol mob. Some police unions feel they can’t back them.

        Anyone who breached the Capitol “should be charged and receive whatever punishment is assigned to that,” said Douglas Griffith, who is now the union president. “No matter if they’re a police officer or not.”

      • Can police databases kill?

        It is hardly possible for asylum seekers to correct wrong entries in German information systems. In North Rhine-Westphalia, these false entries led to the death of Amad Ahmad. In Hesse, too, this digital police arbitrariness is now becoming evident.

      • Victory in Detroit Black Lives Matter protester cases!!

        Today, Detroit’s 36th District Court Judge Larry Williams, Jr., dismissed without prejudice all criminal cases on his docket against all Black Lives Matter protesters arrested during this past summer: a total of over 40 cases involving 30 protester defendants. Most of these cases involved protesters arrested during the initial weekend of protests following the police murder of George Floyd (May 29, 30 and 31; June 1 and 2), but also included are protesters arrested on other dates during the summer; and also some protesters arrested for blocking Detroit school buses, to prevent them from picking up school children for dangerous in-person school sessions during the pandemic. Most of these cases involved misdemeanor charges of Disorderly Conduct or Loitering.

      • Class Action Civil Rights Suit Filed over Brutal NYPD Policing of BLM Protests

        Beldock Levine & Hoffman, Gideon O. Oliver, Cohen & Green, and Wylie M. Stecklow announce the filing of a major class action lawsuit against the City of New York, Mayor Bill de Blasio, New York Police Commissioner Dermot Shea, and other City officials, over the NYPD’s violent policing of the George Floyd protests this summer. The lawsuit seeks to put an end to ongoing, violent protest policing tactics deployed by the NYPD against Black Lives Matter activists in New York City.

        Sow, et al. v. City of New York, et al., filed in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, seeks damages as well as declaratory and injunctive relief on behalf of putative classes that would include all people arrested between May 28th and June 6th, as well as all people who have been or will be subjected to the NYPD’s practices of violently disrupting protests.

        “It is well past time the courts step in and stop the NYPD for their decades-long assault on New Yorkers’ right to protest,” said Jonathan C. Moore, partner at Beldock Levine & Hoffman LLP, the firm who represented Eric Garner, members of the Central Park 5, and co-counseled Floyd, the stop-and-frisk litigation. Mr. Moore was lead counsel on the 2004 Republican National Convention class action, MacNamara, et al., v. City of New York, et al.

      • NLG Demands Immediate Structural Change in Wake of Impeachment and Attempted Coup

        Last week’s white supremacist coup attempt facilitated by law enforcement makes clear that the path forward requires a serious reckoning with the conditions that caused this moment. White supremacy, though mentioned in mainstream news media more frequently in the last year, is not remotely a new phenomenon—it was the ideology the United States was founded on and remains this government’s primary political underpinning, regardless of the political party in power. For this reason, the National Lawyers Guild (NLG) demands that the political response to last week’s fascist mob looks beyond the Trump administration and enacts structural change, including an overhaul of the prison and policing systems, a firm condemnation and rejection of white supremacist ideologies, and the implementation of more progressive policies across the board.

        The NLG remains firm in our abolitionist principles, and last week further demonstrated that law enforcement not only stood down in the face of white, fascist insurrectionists, but actively aided their attempts to enter the Capitol to overturn the election. Law enforcement is, and always has been, the body that carries out the brute force of the state’s white supremacist violence. We have already seen lenient sentencing for the insurrectionists and an arrest count less than ⅓ that of arrests made this summer in D.C. during BLM protests. Yet, “anti-terrorist” legislation will only harm communities of color through the expansion of the police and surveillance state. But this moment does bring about a critical question for abolitionists: how do we effectively address systemic violence without calling for a mass prosecution? The NLG is calling for consequences to white supremacist ideology as a whole, beginning with the political expulsion of all local, state, and federal officials who pushed the narrative of a stolen election, encouraging a pro-Trump attempt to seize power. This begins with, as Missouri Representative Cori Bush put it, the expulsion of “the white supremacist-in-chief,” Donald Trump. At the same time, the NLG understands that impeachment is not enough, and neither is a return to the status quo.

      • Eric Garner’s Mother Says We Must Push for Justice That Her Son Didn’t Receive

        The mother of Eric Garner, who was brutally murdered by New York City police officers applying a chokehold as he pleaded “I can’t breathe,” testified this week before the International Commission of Inquiry on Systemic Racist Police Violence Against People of African Descent in the United States.

        “They killed him. It is no justice for him. But we must still stand for justice,” Garner’s mother, Gwen Carr, said during the commission’s opening hearing on January 18, Martin Luther King Jr. Day. “We must get justice for those who come behind him.”

        Another mother to testify before the commission was Dominic Archibald, the mother of Nathaniel Pickett II, who was murdered by a San Bernardino County, California, deputy sheriff who saw him lawfully walking in a crosswalk. “In the final moments of the only life he had, my only child was stopped, beaten, and terrorized like a dog,” she testified. “My son had a civil right to social freedom and a human right to life.”

      • How Canada is targeting Indigenous resistance to TMX

        The handful of supporters in the sparsely-populated courtroom came there to bear witness and stand in solidarity with an Indigenous Elder who had just been tried for a second time and was now awaiting the verdict.

        In December, B.C. Supreme Court Justice Shelley Fitzpatrick found Jim Leyden guilty of criminal contempt of court for breaching an injunction originally brought by Trans Mountain Pipeline ULC (TMX) in March 2018. The injunction is the line that TMX has drawn in the sand, so as to stifle any meaningful resistance at the company’s worksites throughout the province – including TMX contractors and subcontractors – and all along the pipeline’s path.

      • Seeking to End “Juan Crow” Laws in the Next Congress

        Born a mile south of the U.S.-Mexico border in a nunnery in Nogales, Sonora, deported U.S. Navy veteran Alex Murillo came to Phoenix in 1978 as a baby in his mother’s arms. But just after Christmas 2011, he was returned to Tijuana shackled at the wrists and ankles after serving 37 months for a cannabis bust. He thought that after he had done his time at California’s Lompoc Federal Correctional Institution, he would go home to his two sons and two daughters, ages 5 to 14. Instead, he was processed for deportation directly from the prison, where Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has an on-site office.

        “On the whole ride from the prison to the border, I still had hope,” Murillo says. “Every time the van stopped to pick up another deportee, I was sure someone would come on board, point at me and say, ‘Not that guy—he’s a veteran.’” It was around midnight when they pulled up to the border fence. As Murillo stepped out of the van, still wearing prison garb with the $120 cash refund from his prison commissary account sewed into a seam, reality dawned: With his next step he’d be in exile from the country he’d been willing to die for.

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

      • Outgoing FCC’s Last Act Is A Delusional Report That Pretends US Broadband Is Wonderful

        By law, the FCC is required once a year to issue a report indicating whether quality broadband is being deployed on a “reasonable and timely basis.” If not, the agency is supposed to, you know, actually do something about it. Unsurprisingly, the Pai FCC last year issued a glowing report declaring that everything was going swimmingly, despite some glaring evidence to the contrary. After all, the nation’s phone companies have effectively stopped upgrading their DSL lines, leaving cable giants like Comcast with a growing monopoly over faster broadband speeds (no, neither Elon Musk nor 5G will magically fix this problem).

      • Progressives Applaud Biden Pick of Rosenworcel to Lead FCC Out of Carnage Left by Ajit Pai

        “She knows the FCC from the bottom up and she understands how to make good things happen there,” said one former Commissioner.

      • Biden appoints Jessica Rosenworcel as acting FCC chair

        President Joe Biden has appointed Democratic commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel to lead the Federal Communications Commission until an official chair is confirmed. Rosenworcel is the second woman to lead the agency as acting chair.

        Rosenworcel was first nominated to the FCC by President Barack Obama and served from May 2012 to January 2017. She was later confirmed for an additional term in August 2017 where she currently serves as the most senior Democratic commissioner at the FCC. Over the course of her tenure at the FCC, Rosenworcel voted to impose and maintain net neutrality and pushed to close what she’s called the “homework gap,” an effort to extend broadband to every child in the country.

    • Monopolies

      • Coronavirus Reporter complaint against Apple raises serious antitrust issues: Apple’s COVID app rule should be declared illegal (Google’s isn’t better)

        After almost six months of commenting on App Store antitrust cases, above all Epic Games v. Apple, the time has come for me to state clearly that, just like Epic, I am convinced that Apple and Google have monopoly power in their respective app distribution markets. And while the focus varies from app maker to app maker, I, too, have experienced and continue to experience abusive conduct by both.

        So far, I had expressed firm opinions solely on aspects of Epic’s case against Apple that related to access to emergency relief (temporary restraining order, preliminary injunction). Especially after I heard Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers (Northern District of California) tell counsel for Epic and Apple that the key issues in the case wouldn’t be decided at that early stage, I wanted to take my time to understand. Now, I’m not saying I necessarily agree with Epic on each and every aspect of its cases (though I may when the cases go to trial), and I’m particularly not taking a position on the 30% cut yet. But there’s one thing I can say at this stage: I definitely concur with Epic’s definition of app distribution markets and its assertion that Apple and Google possess monopoly power in those markets.

      • FOSS Patents: Filed complaints with competition authorities about Apple’s and Google’s COVID app rules

        What these jurisdictions have in common is that they’ve all been particularly affected by COVID-19, and these competition authorities either have ongoing investigations or pending complaints or (in the case of the Federal Cartel Office of Germany) have expressed an interest in app platform antitrust issues.

        For me it was quite a difficult decision to do this. I’d rather just have continued to watch cases like Epic Games v. Apple, but after much thought I concluded that the issue I have with Apple and Google in this context is part of a broader problem. When I made this decision, I had no idea that a U.S. antitrust lawsuit over Apple’s COVID app rules–Coronavirus Reporter v. Apple–was being prepared. I learned about it only a couple of days ago, and commented on it today. But I figured that there’d be other legitimate COVID-related apps that must have been rejected only because they were not submitted by governmental entities or healthcare providers.

        What my company had to do to our Corona Control Game in order to comply with Apple’s and Google’s rules is best explained with an analogy:

        Imagine what it would have meant if the makers of the Titanic film had had to deal with only two movie theater operators, each of which controlled a distinct part of the world. Each of these cinema operators would have stated its rules slightly differently, but the net effect would have been the same: do the Titanic film without the Titanic ship, or else.

        The distribution channel would have given no reason for that, or maybe it would have told the movie company that the Titanic was such a tragedy that it’s offensive to create an entertainment product involving it.

      • Patents

        • Plaintiffs consider bench trials to combat litigation backlog [Ed: Litigation profiteers and blackmail zealots see their 'pipeline' of suffering as a "backlog"]

          Four in-house counsel, two private practice lawyers and one judge, Alan Albright, reveal how courts and lawyers are managing the COVID-induced trial holdup

        • USPTO Responds to Congressional Request for Information Regarding Criteria for Registration Examination for Admission to Patent Bar [Ed: The patent maximalists, bribed by law firms, already pestering the Biden administration]

          On Tuesday, U.S. Patent and Trademark Office Director Andrei Iancu, in one of his last acts before stepping down from the post, sent a letter to Senators Thom Tillis (R-NC), Christopher Coons (D-DE), and Mazie Hirono (D-HI) of the Subcommittee on Intellectual Property for the Senate Judiciary Committee, responding to the Senators’ letter of December 11, 2020 seeking information regarding the criteria for the registration examination for admission to the patent bar.

        • The Unified Patent Court – a brief update [Ed: UPC boosters say “Recent constitutional challenges raised in Germany have cast doubt once again on the anticipated time-frame for the implementation of the new Unified Patent Court (UPC) in Europe.” But no, it’s about the overall viability, not merely timeframe. This is common spin from Team UPC.]

          The UPC is a new patent enforcement forum, which is intended to create a streamlined procedure for the litigation of patents granted by the European Patent Office through a single court system. The UPC will have jurisdiction over all European patents and new unitary patents (UPs) designated to those participating EU Member States that have ratified the UPC Agreement.

          For the UPC system to take effect, at least 13 EU countries must pass national legislation to ratify the UPC Agreement. Of these 13 countries, it was initially required that France, Germany and the UK in particular ratified the UPC Agreement in order to give effect to the new system, which was initially achieved.

        • This week in IP: WSOU most litigious NPE, UK appoints new IP judge, Trump appointees resign

          Donald Trump’s last days as US president ushered in a few predictable resignations within IP-focused federal departments, and one surprising pardon of a man famously convicted of trade secret theft.

          Makan Delrahim, the head of the Department of Justice’s antitrust division, handed in his resignation letter on January 13, and officially resigned on Tuesday, January 19.

          The now former assistant attorney general, who was both admired and loathed by standard essential patent stakeholders for his antitrust policies, told Managing IP before the presidential election that he intended to resign in early 2021, whether Trump won or lost.

          USPTO director Andrei Iancu also tendered his resignation on January 19. In a letter to office staff, Iancu bid his colleagues farewell, noting that it was a privilege to serve with them for the past three years. Patents commissioner Drew Hirshfeld stepped in as acting director.

          It was expected that the now former USPTO head would resign after Joe Biden won the presidency. In-house counsel told Managing IP as much back in December, and opined on what they wanted to see from a new director.

          USPTO deputy director Laura Peter also resigned, noting that it was customary to leave office after a change of administration. In a LinkedIn post, she said she was proud of the USPTO’s achievements and to work alongside Iancu and her other colleagues.

        • Of novelty, inventiveness and sufficiency: how to write a good paper or thesis

          Spring semester is here and that means students at universities all over the world are getting ready to write final assignments or even their theses. This Kat is proud to announce that, starting this semester, he will be teaching in the IP courses of the Erasmus University Rotterdam, together with professor Tobias Cohen Jehoram. It’s a great honour to teach alongside such a renowned IP scholar and litigator in the city that “makes it happen” and is known for its slogan “Niet lullen maar poetsen”—which translates roughly to “Don’t sit around talking but get off your butt and get to it”.

          As it turns out, that is not the worst advice one can give a student faced with a paper or thesis assignment. For all those kittens out there about to face this ordeal, this Kat composed a checklist to help their writing. Having written it down, it bore uncanny resemblance to the requirements for patentability under the European Patent Convention (EPC). Call it an extreme case of nerdview, but if it helps you write your paper, that’s at least one good deed for humanity on the part of patent law.


          Unity of invention [art. 82 EPC]: or, the requirement that your paper is sufficiently delineated. Art. 82 EPC states that “the European patent application shall relate to one invention only”. Likewise, your paper should be limited to your core argument only: one paper, one argument.

          This is easier said than done. When researching and writing, we often come across interesting sideroads or overlapping arguments. A difficult aspect of academic writing – one that takes years to master – is to know which of these to include in your narrative, and which ones to leave aside for future study. The oft-used phrase “less is more” applies with particular force to academic writing (although you may be fooled to think otherwise reading some law review articles…).

          Your research question is the best tool to achieve this. Ask yourself, for each paragraph in your thesis, how does this help me answer my research question. Formulating one or more sub-questions to cover different chapters can help with this.

        • Software Patents

          • $750 Awarded for Contemporary Display ’202 Prior Art

            Unified is pleased to announce the PATROLL crowdsourcing contest winner, Vaibhav Srivastava, who received a cash prize of $750 for his prior art submission for U.S. Patent 7,500,202. The ‘202 patent is owned by Contemporary Display LLC, a subsidiary of IPValuation Partners, LLC. The ’202 patent generally relates to a method and system for delivering categorized television programming and for delivering navigational tools providing information about and access to multiple programs.

          • $2,500 Awarded for CDN Innovations Prior Art

            Unified is pleased to announce the PATROLL crowdsourcing contest winner, Sukhdeep Singh, who received a cash prize of $2,500 for his prior art submissions for U.S. Patent 6,311,180. The ‘180 patent is owned by CDN Innovations, LLC, an NPE and entity of IPinvestments Group, and generally relates to a method that allows documents to be viewed on a plurality of devices according to the preferences of the user. The ‘180 patent is currently being asserted against Grande Communications Networks, Cable One, and TDS Broadband Service.

          • Engle Grange patent determined to be likely invalid

            On January 21, 2021, the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) instituted trial on all challenged claims in an IPR filed by Unified against U.S. Patent 8,548,645, owned by Engle Grange, LLC, an NPE. The ‘645 patent is generally directed towards a two-step key fob authentication system for an automobile. The patent was asserted against Ford in early 2020.

          • $1,500 Awarded for Intellectual Ventures prior art

            Unified is pleased to announce the PATROLL crowdsourcing contest winner, Vibhor Dimri, who received a cash prize of $1,500 for his prior art submission for U.S. Patent 6,618,736, owned by Intellectual Ventures Management LLC, an NPE. The ’736 patent relates to file systems that are created and archived by providing a set of shared storage units and one or more templates. Each template includes a set of private storage units and a corresponding usage map. The patent is currently being asserted against Arista Networks in district court.

      • Trademarks

      • Copyrights

        • GitHub Restores NYAA Repository As It Isn’t Clearly ‘Preconfigured to Infringe’

          A few days after Github removed the repository of the popular torrent site NYAA following an MPA takedown notice, the company has reversed its decision. While the developers didn’t respond in any way, GitHub decided to carry out another review which concluded that there isn’t sufficient evidence to conclude that the code is ‘preconfigured to infringe.’

        • UFC to Pirates: Watch McGregor on Saturday and “See What Happens”

          During today’s pre-fight press conference for UFC 257 Poirier v McGregor, UFC President Dana White had an interesting prediction on piracy. Informing journalists and the thousands tuning in online that “we got one”, he invited illegal streamers to tune in on Saturday night and “see what happens.” More bluster from the UFC or is it time for a proper beatdown?


Links 21/1/2021: Raspberry Pi Pico, Ubuntu 21.04 Picks GNOME 3.38, KDE Plasma 5.21 Beta

Posted in News Roundup at 5:23 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • 13 Reasons Why Linux Is Better Than Windows

      Linux tends to be a highly reliable and secure system than any other operating systems (OS). Linux and Unix-based OS have fewer security flaws, as the code is reviewed by a huge number of developers constantly. And anyone has access to its source code. So, you won’t need any anti-virus software to protect your PC from malware and viruses. The reason it’s secure because it’s open-source, which means you can see its source code. As a result, bugs in the Linux OS will fix rapidly compared to other OS.

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • TUXEDO InfinityBook S 15 Linux Laptop Launches with Tiger Lake CPUs, Ultra Thin Design

        Meet TUXEDO InfinityBook S 15, the smallest 15.6-inch Linux laptop offering from TUXEDO Computers that does not disappoint on any aspect. Its biggest attraction is the ultra thin design with 92 percent screen-to-body ratio and very compact design that can only be found on 14-inch laptops.

        The ultra modern and thin design is due to the 15.6-inch Full HD (1920×1080 pixels) IPS display featuring approximately 300 nits brightness, 800:1 contrast, 95% sRGB color gamut, and anti-reflective / non-glare coating, as well as the monocolor (white) backlit keyboard with TUX super-key, and a clickpad with multi-touch gestures.

      • Serval WS – The Beast Laptop from System76

        Hey everyone! I got in touch with System76, and they were kind enough to send me a review unit of one of their products — the Serval WS. It’s a laptop that should more so be referred to as a workstation — meaning, it’s meant to be used for the most part while plugged in, while a user can use it’s portability factor on what I refer to as an emergency basis. The battery life is extremely short, so this thing needs to be plugged in all the time.


        I will have more benchmarks in the coming weeks, as well as an article that goes into much more detail about this unit, so stay tuned.

      • System76 Darter Pro Linux laptop returns with 11th Gen Intel Core processors

        We are well into 2021 now, so we can finally stop thinking about the dumpster fire that was 2020. Instead, we can focus on more important things, such as Linux! Yes, folks, Linux is still going full steam ahead — look out, Microsoft! And yes, companies such as System76 are still selling computers running operating systems based on the open source kernel.

        Speaking of that company, today, System76′s popular Darter Pro makes a return to its Linux laptop lineup. This new model of the 15.6-inch notebook is notable for having cutting-edge 11th Gen Intel Core processors with Iris Xe graphics. Of course, that is hardly the only exciting thing here — it also features speedy PCIe 4.0 NVMe storage, Thunderbolt 4, and Wi-Fi 6. Not to mention, it uses System76′s Open Firmware with coreboot.

      • System76 Brings Back the Darter Pro Linux Laptop with Longer Battery Life, Tiger Lake CPUs

        The Darter Pro is one of System76′s most versatile all-around Linux laptops and the 2021 refresh is here with 11th Gen Intel Core i5-1135G7 and i7-1165G7 CPUs with 4 cores / 8 threads and integrated Iris Xe graphics, up to 64GB dual-channel DDR4 3200MHz RAM, and up to 4TB M.2 SSD storage.

        Best of all, the new Darter Pro comes with System76’s Coreboot-based Open Firmware and Open Source Embedded Controller Firmware to give customers full control over the hardware, and also make the Linux laptop faster and more secure.

    • Server

      • How a Linux migration led to the creation of Amazon Web Services

        Dan Rose, chairman of Coatue Ventures and Coatue Growth, posted a thread on Twitter the other day, 280 characters or less at a time, in which he chronicled how it came about that AWS infrastructure is built on Linux.

        Rose was at Amazon from 1999 to 2006, where he managed retail divisions and helped incubate the Kindle reader before moving to Facebook. So he was at Amazon in 2000 when the internet bubble popped,and one high-flying dot-com after another was shriveling up and dying, having burned through ridiculous amounts of capital on luxurious offices while often having nothing by way of a product to show for it.

        Rose said Amazon’s biggest expense was the data center outfitted with expensive Sun servers. Amazon’s motto was “get big fast,” and site stability was critical. Every second of downtime meant lost sales, and Sun was the gold standard for internet servers back then. I can recall them having a significant software business led by a VP named Eric Schmidt.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

    • Kernel Space

      • Ubuntu Linux is now running on M1 Macs | Ars Technica

        We still have a way to go before easily dual-booting Linux and macOS.

      • Finally! Linux Runs Gracefully On Apple M1 Chip

        Apple’s M1 chip is continuously in the buzz because of its impressive capability of monstrous performance on their own ARM-based MacBook and Mac Mini.

        And, for that reason, many Linux users want to get their hands on them. But without proper Linux support, it would be a nightmare.

        While Linus Torvalds didn’t have high hopes for this to happen, it looks like Corellium – a company who specializes with ARM device virtualization has finally made it possible.

        In a tweet by Chris Wade (CTO of Corellium), he mentions that Linux is completely usable on a Mac Mini M1. Before you blindly grab a device with Apple Silicon, let me tell you more about it.

      • How We Ported Linux to the M1

        When Apple released their desktop products with the M1 processor in November 2020, quite a few people in the tech community were surprised by the excellent performance of these systems. But those who have been following the development of Apple phone chipsets closely knew that the evolutionary path Apple followed would result in a powerful 64-bit ARM processor.

        At Corellium, we’ve been tracking the Apple mobile ecosystem since iPhone 6, released in 2014 with two 64-bit cores. Since then, Apple has been focusing their energy on building faster chips, preferring to improve single-threaded performance over throwing more cores on the chip. This approach was enabled by their in-house hardware design team, and resulted in unique parts with a broad feature set, leading the industry in terms of architectural features.

        It also made Apple silicon rather distinct from all other 64-bit ARM hardware in terms of both CPU core and peripherals. Our Corellium virtualization platform has been providing security researchers with unparalleled insight into how operating systems and programs work on Apple ARM processors. But in the process of developing our virtualization system, we also gain knowledge about the hardware we are modeling, and this knowledge can be best refined by testing it against real hardware – which we have only been able to do with the emergence of checkm8, an exploit that let us load programs onto Apple smartphones. This led directly to the Sandcastle project, where we built a kernel port to the A10 processor in early 2020.

      • Apple M1 Macs can now run Ubuntu Linux thanks to Corellium

        The sheer impressive power of the Apple Silicon M1 processor has made developers, hackers, and tinkerers daydream about possible use cases beyond what Apple intended or would even allow. Some have already gotten Windows to run on it, in a virtualized environment fashion, of course. Now a few security researchers have also figured out how to run Linux directly on the hardware, albeit with a few catches that could still make it not that useful for a daily driver for Linux users.

      • Corellium ports Linux to Apple M1 Mac mini

        I was sure that Linux would eventually run on Apple’s ARM-based M1 CPU. After all, Linux has been ported to essentially every processor on the planet. Even without Apple’s co-operation, it would only be a matter of time. I’d assumed it would take a year or so. I was wrong. Correllium, a company specializing in ARM virtualization and developer tools, has successfully ported Linux to Apple’s new M1-powered Mac mini.


        For now, only people who really know Linux should be trying this out. Wade said that binary files and a how-to document are being worked on. For the moment, you must still compile the linux-M1 code yourself.

        That done, you can boot your M1 Mac mini from a USB stick into a full Ubuntu Linux desktop. For networking, you’ll also need a USB-C dongle. More work is being done, even as I write this, to include better USB and I2C serial communications protocol.

        Behind the scenes, the M1 Linux port is based on work done in Corelliums’ Project Sandcastle. This was a project to get Android and Linux running on iPhones.

        In short, although the M1 is a new chip, with its work on iPhone chipsets Corellium was already digging the foundations for Linux on M1. That’s because “many of the devices on the SoC [System on a Chip] didn’t change from the programmers’ perspective.”

      • Linux has been ported to run on Apple’s M1 Macs

        A new Linux port allows Apple’s M1 Macs to run Ubuntu for the first time. Corellium, a security firm that offers a virtualized version of iOS for security testing, has successfully ported Ubuntu over to M1 Macs and released a tutorial for others to follow. The modified version of Ubuntu boots into the regular user interface and includes USB support.

        The team at Corellium have detailed exactly how they managed to get Ubuntu running, and it’s a good in-depth read if you’re interested in the details. While a number of M1 components are shared with Apple’s mobile chips, the non-standard chips made it challenging to create Linux drivers to get Ubuntu running properly.

      • You can now run Linux on Apple M1 devices

        Developers from security startup Corellium have revealed they managed to get Linux running on Apple’s Arm-based M1 devices natively.

        While Linux, and even Windows, were already usable on Apple Silicon thanks to virtualization, this is the first instance of a non-macOS operating system running natively on the hardware.

        “Linux is now completely usable on the Mac mini M1. Booting from USB a full Ubuntu desktop (rpi),” wrote Corellium’s CTO Chris Wade on Twitter while sharing pictures of Ubuntu’s Raspberry Pi ARMv8 desktop image booting on Apple M1 hardware.

      • ‘Completely Usable’ M1 Mac Version of Ubuntu Linux Now Available

        ARM software virtualization company Corellium has released a “completely usable” version of Ubuntu Linux that runs on M1 Macs. Corellium CTO Chris Wade announced the release early this morning.

        Security researchers at the company have developed a port that has been released on GitHub with an installation tutorial is said to be coming later today.

      • Ubuntu has been ported to Mac M1 devices

        Many Mac users utilize a dual-boot setup with their devices. However, that hasn’t been possible for the Mac M1, at least until now. A (very) barebones version of Ubuntu can now dual-boot on M1-powered Macs, though most will want to hold off on installing it for now.

      • M1 Macs can now run full version of Linux thanks to new Corellium port

        Since the new M1 Macs were announced, developers have been working to run different operating systems on the Apple Silicon platform, including Windows and Linux. Now, thanks to Corellium, it’s possible to run Ubuntu — a popular Linux distro — on new Macs with M1 chip.

        The announcement was made on Twitter by Corellium’s CTO Chris Wade. Corellium offers solutions for virtualization of ARM devices and platforms, and it was recently involved in a lawsuit with Apple regarding a tool that lets users virtualize iOS.

      • Restricted DMA

        A key component of system hardening is restricting access to memory; this extends to preventing the kernel itself from accessing or modifying much of the memory in the system most of the time. Memory that cannot be accessed cannot be read or changed by an attacker. On many systems, though, these restrictions do not apply to peripheral devices, which can happily use direct memory access (DMA) on most or all of the available memory. The recently posted restricted DMA patch set aims to reduce exposure to buggy or malicious device activity by tightening up control over the memory that DMA operations are allowed to access.
        DMA allows devices to directly read from or write to memory in the system; it is needed to get reasonable I/O performance from anything but the slowest devices. Normally, the kernel is in charge of DMA operations; device drivers allocate buffers and instruct devices to perform I/O on those buffers, and everything works as expected. If the driver or the hardware contains bugs, though, the potential exists for DMA transfers to overwrite unrelated memory, leading to corrupted systems and unhappy users. Malicious (or compromised) hardware can use DMA to compromise the system the hardware is attached to, making users unhappier still; examples of this type of attack have been posted over the years.

        One way to address this problem is to place an I/O memory-management unit (IOMMU) between devices and memory. The kernel programs the IOMMU to allow access to a specific region of memory; the IOMMU then keeps devices from straying outside of that region. Not all systems are equipped with an IOMMU, though; they are mostly limited to the larger processors found in desktop machines, data centers, and the like. Mobile systems usually lack an IOMMU.

      • A Fix Has Been Proposed For The Slower AMD Performance On Linux 5.11

        With the in-development Linux 5.11 kernel there are many great features and improvements especially for AMD users with some new drivers and other pleasant enhancements. But as I outlined back on Christmas day: Linux 5.11 Is Regressing Hard For AMD Performance With Schedutil. Fortunately, a fix is now en route to the Linux 5.11 kernel for fixing that performance regression affecting AMD Zen 2/3 desktops and servers.

        As outlined in that original article after bisecting the sizable performance regressions and in follow-up tests, AMD hardware performing slower on Linux 5.11 came down to the CPU frequency invariance support introduced this cycle and is utilized by the “Schedutil” CPU frequency scaling governor. With Schedutil often being the default for AMD systems on newer versions of the Linux kernel, this regression on Linux 5.11 compared to prior kernel releases has been unfortunate.

      • Linux 5.11 Is Now Looking Great For AMD Zen 2 / Zen 3 Performance – Phoronix

        Not only is the AMD “CPU frequency invariance regression” from that new support with the in-development Linux 5.11 kernel on course to address the performance shortcomings I outlined last month, but with the patched kernel for a number of workloads the performance is now ahead of where it was at with Linux 5.10.

    • Applications

      • VLC Media Player 3.0.12 fixes multiple remote code execution flaws

        VideoLan released VLC Media Player 3.0.12 for Windows, Mac, and Linux last week with numerous improvements, features, and security fixes.

        This release is a significant upgrade for Mac users as it provides native support for Apple Silicon and fixes audio distortion in macOS.

      • VLC Media Player get major update for M1 Macs – and beyond

        VLC, the extremely popular cross-platform media player software, just got a big update which brings native support to Apple’s M1 Macs.

        The free open-source media player now features an updated 3.0.12 Mac app update specifically for macOS Big Sur and any Apple Silicon-supported devices.

      • Ventoy 1.0.33

        Ventoy is an open source tool to create bootable USB drive for ISO/WIM/IMG/VHD(x)/EFI files. With Ventoy, you don’t need to format the disk over and over, you just need to copy the ISO/WIM/IMG/VHD(x)EFI files to the USB drive and boot them directly. You can copy many files at a time and ventoy will give you a boot menu to select them. Both Legacy BIOS and UEFI are supported in the same way. Most type of OS supported (Windows/WinPE/Linux/Unix/Vmware/Xen…)

      • 8 Best Free and Open Source Linux Point-of-Sale Software

        Point-of sale (POS) is the location where a transaction takes place. It also refers to the immediate capture of transactions and customer payment information when goods and services are purchased. This data can be obtained using many different devices such as a computer, cash register, barcode scanner, PIN pads, and magnetic card readers.

        There are many different reasons why a POS system is indispensable for retail businesses. It helps the retail establishment manage and automate inventory functions, record sales transactions, handle and track special offers (such as discounts, coupons, and special promotions), and improve the efficiency of staff by allowing them to spend more time interacting with customers. The system also provides accurate and relevant reports, tracks volume and performance, uses customer data to help the organisation generate more business, allows a proprietor of the retail establishment to maintain control in absentia, and much more.

      • New Release: Tor Browser 10.5a7

        Tor Browser 10.5a7 is now available from the Tor Browser Alpha download page and also from our distribution directory.

        Note: This is an alpha release, an experimental version for users who want to help us test new features. For everyone else, we recommend downloading the latest stable release instead.

      • The 5 Best Adobe Illustrator Alternatives for Linux

        With a wide variety of editing tools and features, Inkscape stands out to be a great open-source vector graphics software for Linux. The user interface of the application is clean and straightforward. You will not face any issues while navigating and searching for tools.

        Inkscape provides support for a number of file extensions—SVG, PNG, OpenDocument Drawings, DXF, sk1, PDF, EPS, and PostScripts. It also allows you to easily import designs created with other software. For customizing the interface, you can also install add-ons to Inkscape.

        Starting with the canvas dimensions is easy. Inkscape offers you many templates to choose from and you can set up your working area with just one click. You can also implement the power of layering in your projects with Inkscape.

        Pencil and pen tools, calligraphy brushes, shape tools, color selector, gradient fill, etc., are some of the tools that you can use on Inkscape.

      • What is Your Choice After Switching from WhatsApp?

        The year 2021 starts with a big moment of #DeleteWhatsApp. It is when millions of people leave this proprietary software and look for better alternatives. At January 20th, I made a poll in Mastodon titled What is your choice after switching from WhatsApp? which I never thought would attract so many people. I put three choices in that poll Telegram – Signal – Element and people responded with some other alternatives such as XMPP – Threema – Jami and more. Now I present you this article as an introduction to alternative messengers mentioned in the discussion with short explanations so you can try them or refer to good sources. Enjoy sharing once again!


        Jami is the new challenger to all, that is, a modern messenger without server. You can try it instantly without phone number, and your account is stored in your device not in a company’s server, and it can work within local area network (see, it’s really unique, right?). It is under High Priority Projects of Free Software Foundation, an official part of GNU Project, and also already a built-in part of the fully free distro Trisquel 9. I already reviewed it (see here) and showed you it’s voice-video calls are functional. Download Jami at jami.net.


        Extensible Messaging and Presence Protocol or XMPP (also known as Jabber) is a long standing standard of internet direct communication. It is among the pioneer of our modern federation and decentralization. It existed long before Matrix, loved by many, and you can see in the Mastodon discussion most people who didn’t choose presented choices chose XMPP. To communicate over XMPP, you choose an application, with choices mentioned above. For now, thanks to friend @LPS’s suggestion, I can say Blabber is good as it supports mainstream features like groups and video calls.

      • Tribler

        There is a new application available for Sparkers: Tribler

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • What Are Bash Variables and How Can You Use Them? – Make Tech Easier

        Bash allows you to map whole strings of text to single variables, simplifying its use and script writing. How do they work, and how can you use them? Let’s find out. What’s a Variable? Variables are easy-to-remember names that can contain different alphanumeric values. They’re useful because they allow the same function to be applied on different values, without having to rewrite a script/piece of code. They also make writing the script/piece of code easy, since instead of dealing with individual values, you can use the same name for all of them.

      • Virtualbox Error – Failed to load ring-0 module VBoxEhciR0.r0 – OSTechNix

        This brief guide explains how to fix “Failed to load ring-0 module VBoxEhciR0.r0 for device usb-ehci” in Virtualbox 6.1 in Linux.

      • Advanced Git Tutorial

        This article is in continuation to my existing article Getting started with GIT on Linux. If you are new to Git, I would recommend you to first go through my previous article and then continue with this.

        In this article, we will cover creating a branch, tag, renaming the branch and revert the commits on Git.

      • Docker Essentials (Part 1) – Introduction
      • Docker Essentials (Part 2) – What is Docker?
      • Docker Essentials (Part 3) – Installing Docker on Windows 10, macOS, and Ubuntu
      • Docker Essentials (Part 4) – Running Containers
      • Docker Essentials (Part 5) – Making Containers Persist
      • Docker Essentials (Part 6) – Accessing Containerized Apps
      • Docker Essentials (Part 7) – Creating Images
      • How to install WeChat on Manjaro 21
      • How To Install KeePass Password Manager on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install KeePass Password Manager on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS. For those of you who didn’t know, KeePassX offers a little utility intended for secure password generation. The username and password generator is very customizable, quick, and easy to work with. Especially an individual who generates passwords frequently can appreciate this feature. The full database is always encrypted either using AES or Twofish encryption criteria using a 256-bit key. For that reason, the saved information can get considered quite safe. KeePassX makes use of a database format that is definitely appropriate for KeePass Password Safe. This kind of makes the application of that application perhaps more favorable.

        This article assumes you have at least basic knowledge of Linux, know how to use the shell, and most importantly, you host your site on your own VPS. The installation is quite simple and assumes you are running in the root account, if not you may need to add ‘sudo‘ to the commands to get root privileges. I will show you through the step by step installation of KeePass Password Manager on Ubuntu 20.04 (Focal Fossa). You can follow the same instructions for Ubuntu 18.04, 16.04, and any other Debian based distribution like Linux Mint.

      • Install Blender 2.91.2 In Ubuntu / Linux Mint | Tips On UNIX

        Blender is an open-source 3D creation suite and completely free for use. It is a public project and made by hundreds of people.

        Blender Supports Animation, 3D modeling, Sculpting, camera tracking, video editing, rendering, composting, and much more.

        It is a cross-platform software and supports Windows, Linux, and macOS.

        This tutorial will be helpful for beginners to install blender 2.91.2 in Ubuntu 20.04, Ubuntu 20.10, Ubuntu 18.04, and Linux Mint 20.1.

      • How to check for and stop DDoS attacks on Linux – TechRepublic

        Jack Wallen walks you through some of the steps you can take to check for and mitigate distributed denial of service attacks on a Linux server.

      • How To Plot Unix Directory Structure Using Python Graphviz

        Graphviz is great library for visualizing connections between any network. In this notebook, I will show you how to plot Unix directory structure using Graphviz. There is a Python package python-graphviz which I will use to plot using Python.

      • How Do I Change UEFI Settings? – Linux Hint

        When you are using Linux, of any distribution, you sometimes need to look at settings for the UEFI. The reasons vary; you may have a dual-boot system and cannot find the other boot option, maybe you want to have it boot securely, or, in some cases, you want to turn secure boot off so you can boot anything.

      • How to Deploy GraphQL Application Using Node.js on EC2 Server – Linux Hint

        GraphQL, also known as Graph Query Language, established and maintained by Facebook, is a query language used for APIs. It is built using JavaScript, Scala, Java, and Ruby programming languages. Its basic purpose is to ask for the data from server to client.GraphQL aggregates the data from different sources. Aggregation is the process of filtering data on the server side and then sending the filtered data to the client. Without aggregation, we send all the data to the client, and then the data is filtered at the client-side. This makes the system slow, and we can improve the efficiency of an API by using GraphQL. Here we will learn to deploy a simple GraphQL application using node.js on an EC2 server.

      • How to Install OpenJDK on Fedora Linux – Linux Hint

        Java is a general-purpose programming language offering reliability, security, and compatibility. Java is everywhere – mobile apps, desktop programs, web applications, and enterprise systems.

        To build Java apps, developers need the JDK (Java Development Kit) that comes with all the essential tools. In this guide, check out how to install OpenJDK on Fedora Linux.

      • Ultimate Guide to Install Flask on Ubuntu

        Flask is an open-source and free micro web-based python framework, designed to help programmers for building scalable, secure, and easily maintainable web applications. If you are a beginner, then, it’s quite easy and simple to start. We will tell you in this article how to install the python framework Flask on Ubuntu 20.04 system. The commands we have implemented can also run on Debian and old Ubuntu distributions.

      • How to Install Linux Apps Using the Snap Store – Linux Hint

        Snap store is a desktop application used to find, install, and manage apps(also known as snaps) on Linux platforms. It shows all of the featured and famous applications with a thorough description, reviews, screenshots, and ratings. You can easily search for a specific application then download it on your system. Snap store always keeps users’ data secure and safe so that no one can access the data without your permission.
        Snap store is a similar platform to Google app store as a user can download any Linux supported application easily from it. It is good to use the Snap store in your system to cover complete details on how to install Linux apps using the Snap store in this article. Snap store installation is almost the same for every Linux distro; read the article below to install snap store and download applications completely.

      • How to Install SysStat to Enable System Monitoring on Debian 10? – Linux Hint

        SysStat is a very useful utility for Linux based systems that are used for effectively monitoring your system. With system monitoring, you can easily figure out all the potential issues in your system, and hence, you can keenly observe the activities going on in your system. In this article, we are going to explain to you the procedure of installing SysStat to enable system monitoring on Debian 10.

      • How to Setup vsftpd FTP Server on Debian 10? – Linux Hint

        Vsftpd (Very Secure FTP Daemon), licensed under GNU General Public License, is an FTP protocol used to transfer files to and from a remote network. It is a secure, stable, and fast FTP server that is supported on Linux/UNIX operating systems. In this post, we will learn how to set up a vsftpd FTP server on the Debian system.

      • Tweaks for OpenEmbedded Dunfell

        I am currently working on changes to my fork of OE, Dunfell release. Working through a to-do list, here is progress so far…

        When I compiled LibreOffice recently on the Pi4, was unable to use the ‘boost’, ‘harfbuzz’ and ‘neon’ system packages, had to use internal versions. This is duplication, means that the final LibreOffice binary package will be bigger that is could be.

      • Installing Steam on Fedora Linux – Linux Hint

        Vsftpd (Very Secure FTP Daemon) is a secure, stable, and fast FTP protocol used to transfer files to and from a remote network. In this article, we’ll discuss how to setup vsftpd FTP server on Debian 10 machine to easily access and upload/download files to and from your FTP server.

      • BRL‑CAD : Open-Source Solid Modeling CAD Software

        Are you looking for open-source solid modeling software for your Linux PC? We recommend you try BRL-CAD. FOSS Linux brings you a detailed guide on its set up and usage.

    • Wine or Emulation

      • Wine 6.0 now available to download

        The development team responsible for creating Wine, the compatibility layer capable of running Windows applications on several POSIX-compliant operating systems, such as Linux, macOS, Android and BSD. Has today announced the release of version 6.0.

        “Instead of simulating internal Windows logic like a virtual machine or emulator, Wine translates Windows API calls into POSIX calls on-the-fly, eliminating the performance and memory penalties of other methods and allowing you to cleanly integrate Windows applications into your desktop. This release represents a year of development effort and over 8,300 individual changes. It contains a large number of improvements that are listed in the release notes below.”

    • Games

      • Godot Engine – Announcing the new community map for user groups

        Starting from today, there is a new User groups page on the Godot Engine website! This page replaces the old User groups page by featuring a community map that can be freely navigated and contributed to.


        For the curious, the map is powered by the open source Leaflet.js library and uses the Mapbox Static Tiles API. You can view the implementation in this pull request.

      • Space Otter Charlie looks like a truly charming upcoming Zero-G puzzle platformer | GamingOnLinux

        Space Otter Charlie is a Zero-G platformer puzzler with cute characters and visuals, odd weapons and it looks thoroughly charming. It’s due out later in this year.

        Currently in development by Wayward Distractions, a group of game development veterans from the likes of PopCap Studios who you might know from titles like Bejeweled and Plants vs Zombies. They’ve teamed up with The Quantum Astrophysicists Guild for publishing now too.

        “With humanity gone, it’s up to the otters to save animal-kind from an inhospitable Earth. Join Charlie and his ragtag crew of critters on a daring mission through Otter Space as they search for a new planet to call home. Explore derelict space stations, battle unhinged robots, and enjoy some otterly terrific puns as you jump, float, and fly through over a dozen levels of furry fun.”

      • Kathy Rain: Director’s Cut announced and will support Linux | GamingOnLinux

        Kathy Rain: Director’s Cut is the upcoming expanded and improved enhancement over the original that launched in 2016 and the developer has confirmed Linux support too.

        “Set in the 90′s, Kathy Rain tells the story of a strong-willed journalism major who must come to terms with her troubled past as she investigates the mysterious death of her recently departed grandfather. Armed with her motorcycle, a pack of cigs, and a notepad, Kathy delves into a local mystery surrounding her hometown that will take her on a harrowing journey of emotional and personal turmoil.”

      • Stadia has games free to try this weekend for Stadia Pro, ‘Project Hailstorm’ is teased | GamingOnLinux

        More new games, free games to try out on Stadia Pro from now until the end of the weekend and some super secret projects currently in the works for Stadia.

        Let’s get the facts out of the way first shall we? Games and more of them. Available now are HITMAN 3 with the brand new Stadia State Share feature, and also Scott Pilgrim vs. The World – Complete Edition. Interestingly, if you have Stadia Pro you can also still claim HITMAN and HITMAN 2 which have both been given this State Share feature on Stadia now too.

      • Jumpala is an intense score-fighting highly competitive action-platformer out now | GamingOnLinux

        Jump across platforms to turn them your colour, use abilities to mess with your opponents and try to keep platforms your colour as they fall off the screen to score – Jumpala is a lot of fun.

        Developed by Yokereba Games, this is a “first-class” Linux game developed by a long time Linux user who mentioned how they “consider it a Linux-first game since most of my testing was done on my main machine”.

      • Team17 have acquired the full rights to Golf With Your Friends

        Seems January is the time for acquisitions! Following the news recently of YoYo Games (GameMaker Studio) being acquired by Opera, we now have Team17 buying the full rights to Golf With Your Friends (“GWYF”). This was made public today, January 21, in Team17′s latest investor announcement.

        Golf With Your Friends is a fun take on Miniature / Crazy Golf that can be played in solo, local multiplayer or online with a bunch of others. Released out of Early Access in May 2020. Team17 were the publisher with Blacklight Interactive developing it at the time. Now though, as per the financial statement, Team17 now control “all rights and assets for GWYF” and it mentions plans to extend the game including with DLC and mentions potential sequels. The game rights were purchased for £12 million and will be paid entirely in cash with £9m right away and another £3m within 12 months.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • KDE Plasma 5.21 Desktop Enters Beta, Here’s How to Test It Right Now

          Packed with numerous new features and improvements, the KDE Plasma 5.21 desktop environment promises a brand-new application launcher, a new dark theme for the Plasma desktop and a light theme for applications, a refreshed color scheme for all default KDE apps, as well as the highly-anticipated Plasma System Monitor app.

          Of course, there will also be a lot of KWin and Wayland improvements that should reduce latency and smooth animations throughout the entire desktop environment, better compatibility with GTK applications, especially with apps written in GTK 4.

        • KDE Plasma 5.21 BETA Released. Download and Test Now.

          The KDE team announced the release of KDE Plasma 5.21 BETA and it is available for download and test. KDE Plasma 5.21 brings many new features such as a new kickoff menu, low-latency compositing, Wayland updates, new apps, and more. Here’s what’s new and how to download & test.

    • Distributions

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • In a Move to Retain Small-Scale CentOS Users, Red Hat Allows Free RHEL Download [With Ifs and Buts]

          You are probably aware of the way Red Hat decided to discontinue CentOS 8 and replace it with rolling release CentOS.

          This created a sort of rebellion among the CentOS users who rightly saw it as betrayal and a ‘dick move’ by Red Hat to force them to buy RHEL license.


          Red Hat sensed that people were worried about having to pay for Red Hat license or migrate their servers to some other distributions.

          And hence they come up with the plan to allow them to use RHEL for free, as long as they don’t have more than 16 servers. The plan should be available before 1st February 2021.

          Keep in mind that the ‘no-cost RHEL’ programs comes without Red Hat support (for technical issues). You can use Red Hat, that’s it. If you want support, you’ll have to upgrade (pay money).


          It portrays that RHEL is the ideal choice for production workload. For CentOS Stream, it says no such thing despite their developers claiming on social media that CentOS Stream is not a beta product, not rolling release and stable enough to run production servers.

          Somehow that confidence in CentOS Stream evaporated in the official announcement? Or perhaps the real reason is to pitch Red Hat as their recommendation for production servers. You decide.

          The olive branch offered by Red Hat may make some small-scale users happy. It doesn’t wash off the corporate greed painted all over them. What do you think?

        • A possible step toward integrity measurement for Fedora

          The Fedora 34 release is planned for April 20 — a plan that may well come to fruition, given that the Fedora project appears to have abandoned its tradition of delayed releases. As part of that schedule, any proposals for system-wide changes were supposed to be posted by December 29. That has not stopped the arrival of a late proposal to add file signatures to Fedora’s RPM packages, though. This proposal, meant to support the use of the integrity measurement architecture (IMA) in Fedora, has not been met with universal acclaim.
          The purpose of IMA is to measure whether the integrity of the system is intact, where “integrity” means that the important files in the system have not been corrupted. At its core, this measurement is carried out by reading a file’s contents, computing a hash, and comparing that hash to the expected value; if the values match, the file has not been altered. This measurement can be used to prevent the execution (or reading) of corrupted files; it can also be used as part of a remote attestation scheme to convince a remote party that the local system has not been subjected to unauthorized modifications.

          To perform this measurement, IMA clearly must know what the expected hash for each file is; those hashes are signed with a key trusted by the kernel and stored as extended attributes. Generally, the private key used to sign these hashes is kept in some secure location, while the public key is either stored in a device like a trusted platform module (TPM) or built into the kernel binary. If all works as intended, IMA can thus be used to ensure that systems only run executables that have been blessed by some central authority, that those executables only read configuration files that have been similarly blessed, and so on. It is a mechanism for ensuring that the owner of a system keeps control of it; whether this is a good thing or not depends entirely on who the “owner” is defined to be.

          The actual proposal does not go so far as to implement IMA on Fedora systems; it is limited to including signatures with every file that is shipped in Fedora packages. These signatures “will be made with a key that’s kept by the Fedora Infrastructure team, and installed on the sign vaults”. Fedora users would then be able to use IMA to keep their systems from using files that have been modified since they were packaged. An actual IMA setup for Fedora can be expected to come at some future time.

        • Fedora Loves Python 2020 report – Fedora Community Blog

          Inspired by a similar report from the Copr team, I’ve decided to look back at 2020 from the perspective of Python in Fedora (and little bit in RHEL/CentOS+EPEL as well). Here are the things we have done in Fedora (and EL) in 2020. By we I usually mean the Python Maint team at Red Hat and/or the Fedora’s Python SIG.

        • Introducing the Red Hat build of Eclipse Vert.x 4.0 – Red Hat Developer

          If you are interested in reactive, non-blocking, and asynchronous Java development, you are likely familiar with Eclipse Vert.x. The project started in 2011 and successfully moved to the Eclipse Foundation in 2013. Since then, Vert.x has undergone nine years of rigorous development and grown into a thriving community. It is one of the most widely used reactive frameworks, with support for multiple extensions, including extensions for messaging or streaming with Kafka or Artemis, developing applications with gRPC and GraphQL, and so much more.

          The Red Hat build of Eclipse Vert.x 4.0 is now generally available. This release improves Vert.x’s core APIs and handling. Developers who migrate can expect enhancements to futures and promises, distributed tracing, and deployment on Red Hat OpenShift. In this article, I introduce these updates and offer tips for migrating and deploying your Eclipse Vert.x 4.0 applications on OpenShift.

        • Implementing the ACSC “Essential Eight” baseline for security automation in Red Hat Enterprise Linux

          Achieving compliance with a security policy and maintaining compliance can be tedious. At Red Hat, we believe that such things should be automated and not become an unnecessary burden. To this end, we offer a whole ecosystem of services that automate security compliance.

          We ship several widely used security policies with our products. Today, we will go over the “Essential Eight” baseline in a bit more detail.

          The “Essential Eight” is a set of mitigation strategies created by the Australian Cyber Security Centre (ACSC), part of the Australian Signals Directorate (ASD) that leads the Australian Government’s efforts to improve cybersecurity.

        • Painless services: implementing serverless with rootless Podman and systemd

          Serverless is an event-driven computing paradigm where applications are allocated dynamically to serve a request or consume events. When the application is not in use, there are no computing resources allocated.

          The serverless ecosystem offers a large number of runtimes, which start/stop/monitor software (e.g., Knative, Kubeless and many others). They come with different features, and they can trigger applications based on different kind of events (e.g., HTTP requests, messages, etc.).

          Even if systemd cannot be considered a real serverless runtime, the socket activation feature provides a foundation for a serverless architecture.

        • Convert your Windows install into a VM on Linux | Opensource.com

          I use VirtualBox frequently to create virtual machines for testing new versions of Fedora, new application programs, and lots of administrative tools like Ansible. I have even used VirtualBox to test the creation of a Windows guest host.

          Never have I ever used Windows as my primary operating system on any of my personal computers or even in a VM to perform some obscure task that cannot be done with Linux. I do, however, volunteer for an organization that uses one financial program that requires Windows. This program runs on the office manager’s computer on Windows 10 Pro, which came preinstalled.

          This financial application is not special, and a better Linux program could easily replace it, but I’ve found that many accountants and treasurers are extremely reluctant to make changes, so I’ve not yet been able to convince those in our organization to migrate.

        • Red Hat’s StackRox Acquisition Bolsters Its Hybrid Multi-Cloud Strategy

          The startup has container security capabilities that are missing in Red Hat’s OpenShift Kubernetes platform.


          “We are working on looking at a few things, and that will have to be run through them because they’re the bank now,” he said. “They’re a partner, but they’re also our shareholders.”

          It’s doubtful that Red Hat would have to go to the IBM bank to finance this purchase. Although no details of the deal were made public, most media reports are putting the price tag at just north of $100 million, far less than the $250 million it paid for CoreOS in 2018.

          As to be expected from Red Hat, which has traditionally insisted that all of its software be open source, Red Hat plans to open source StackRox’s proprietary software after the acquisition closes sometime in the first quarter of 2021. Red Hat said it will continue to support the existing KubeLinter open source community, as well as the new communities that form around StackRox’s other offerings as soon as they are open sourced.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Ubuntu 21.04 (Hirsute Hippo) Will Ship with GNOME 3.38 Desktop Instead of GNOME 40

          The upcoming Ubuntu 21.04 “Hirsute Hippo” release, which is due in April 2021, will stick to the GNOME 3.38 desktop environment series and the GTK 3 toolkit already used in the current release, Ubuntu 20.04 LTS (Focal Fossa).

          Since GNOME is the default desktop environment of Ubuntu, each new Ubuntu release is following the six-month-long release cycle of the upstream GNOME Stack, so Ubuntu 21.04 was supposed to ship with the forthcoming GNOME 40 desktop by default, due for release at the end of March 2021.

        • Ubuntu 21.04 To Stick With GNOME 3.38 Desktop

          While Ubuntu normally ships with the latest GNOME desktop as of release time, April’s release of Ubuntu 21.04 will not be shipping with GNOME 40 but sticking to GNOME 3.38.

          While GNOME 40 should be out in March like usual and normally the latest GNOME updates are pulled timely into the Ubuntu desktop, given all the changes with GNOME 40 and GTK 4.0, they will be holding off one cycle. Thus Ubuntu 21.04 will remain on GNOME 3.38 with GTK3 and then Ubuntu 21.10 in the autumn is when they will move to the latest GNOME stack.

          This decision was made given the GNOME Shell design changes with GNOME 40, concerns over the stability of GTK 4.0 right now, and how well Ubuntu’s Yaru theme might be for GNOME 40 in time for 21.04.

        • Welp, Ubuntu 21.04 Won’t Ship with GNOME 40 or GTK4

          Ubuntu devs cite the redesign of GNOME Shell in GNOME 40 and its potential impact on GNOME extensions (of which Ubuntu ships a few by default) and the Yaru GTK theme as reason to “stick” to GNOME 3.38 this cycle.

          GTK4 also won’t feature in Ubuntu 21.04. But with upstream GNOME having not fully transitioned every nut and bolt of its stack to GTK4 this decision is less of a shock.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • How Nextcloud is the ultimate open source productivity suite

        In prior years, this annual series covered individual apps. This year, we are looking at all-in-one solutions in addition to strategies to help in 2021. Welcome to day 11 of 21 Days of Productivity in 2021.

        Web-based services allow for access to your data almost anywhere and they support millions of users hourly. For some of us, though, running our own service is preferable to using a big company’s service for various reasons. Maybe we work on things that are subject to regulation or have explicit security requirements. Perhaps we have privacy concerns, or just like being able to build, run, and fix things ourselves. Whatever the case may be, Nextcloud can provide most of the services you need, but on your own hardware.

      • MuseScore Created New Font in Memory of Original SCORE Program Creator

        MuseScore represents a free notation software for operating systems such as Windows, macOS and Linux. It is designed and suitable for music teachers, students & both amateur and professional composers. MuseScore is released as FOSS under the GNU GPL license and it’s accompanied by freemium MuseScore.com sheet music catalogue with mobile score viewer, playback app and an online score sharing platform. In 2018, the MuseScore company was acquired by Ultimate Guitar, which included full-time paid developers in the open source team. Since 2019 the MuseScore design team has been led by Martin Keary, known as blogger Tantacrul, who has consistently criticized composer software in connection with design and usability. From that moment on, a qualitative change was set in motion in MuseScore.

        Historically, the engraving quality in MuseScore has not been entirely satisfactory. After the review by Martin Keary, MuseScore product owner (previously known as MuseScore head of design) and Simon Smith, an engraving expert, who has produced multiple detailed reports on the engraving quality of MuseScore 3.5, it has become apparent that some key engraving issues should be resolved immediately.That would have a significant impact on the overall quality of our scores. Therefore, these changes will considerably improve the quality of scores published in the sheet music catalog, MuseScore.com.

      • Open source means surrendering your monopoly over commercial exploitation

        There are ways that you can influence how others use your FOSS software, mainly having to do with making sure that everyone else keeps this same promise. You cannot stop someone from making money from your software, but you can obligate them to share their improvements with everyone else, which you can incorporate back into the original product to make it more compelling for everyone. The GPL family of licenses is designed for this purpose.1

        Furthermore, if your business is a consumer of free and open source software, rather than a producer, you need to be aware that you may be subject to those obligations. It’s not a free lunch: you may be required to return your improvements to the community. FOSS licenses are important, and you should make it your business to understand them, both as a user, contributor, and author of free and open source software.

        FOSS is eating the world, and it’s a very attractive choice for businesses for a good reason. This is the reason. It increases wealth for everyone. Capitalism concerns itself with making monopolies — FOSS instead concerns itself with the socialized creation of software wealth.

      • Web Browsers

        • Chromium

          • Google forcing users to Chrome after appearance of Edge

            ANALYSIS Google’s recent move to limit the use of its APIs in Chrome, such as Chrome sync and Click to Call, appears to be driven by the launch of Microsoft’s Edge browser based on the open-source version of Chrome, known as Chromium.

          • Chrome 88 makes it easier to manage and change passwords

            Google has released another Chrome update for Windows, Mac and Linux, adding some personal security features that should keep users a little safer online. If you use Chrome’s built-in password manager — which isn’t our recommendation, but it’s better than using the same password everywhere — you’ll now have some extra options. You can check if you have any weak passwords, for instance, by selecting your profile picture in the browser, followed by the key icon.

          • IPFS Support in Brave

            IPFS support allows Brave desktop users to download content by using a content hash, known as the Content identifier (CID). Unlike HTTP(S), there is no specified location for the content.

            Each node in the IPFS network is a potential host for the content being requested, and if a node doesn’t have the content being requested, the node can retrieve the content from the swarm of peers. The retrieved content is verified locally, removing the need to trust a third party’s integrity.

            HTTP(S) uses Uniform Resource Locators (URLs) to specify the location of content. This system can be easily censored since the content is hosted in specific locations on behalf of a single entity and it is susceptible to Denial of Service Attacks (DDoS). IPFS identifies its content by content paths and/or CIDs inside of Uniform Resource Identifier (URIs) but not URLs.

          • Brave First Browser to Include IPFS Protocol

            The more we spend our lives hooked up to the Internet in one way or another, the more we are demanding that the experience be more secure. The Brave browser is handling it in an entirely different way — while still promising privacy, it’s also introducing IPFS, a way for Web content to be more centralized than the traditional HTTP. Brave and IPFS Brave released an update to its browser that includes the IPFS (InterPlanetary File System) protocol.

          • RIP old-school Internet: Chrome 88 lays Flash and FTP to rest

            On the other hand, FTP isn’t dead, but it is now for Chrome users. The File Transport Protocol has helped users send files across the Internet for decades, but in an era of prolific cloud storage services and other sharing methods, its use has waned. Google started slowly disabling FTP support in Chrome 86, per ZDNet, and now you’ll no longer be able to access FTP links in the browser. Look for standalone FTP software instead if you need it, such as FileZilla.

        • Mozilla

          • How to Change Firefox Frame Rate for High Refresh Rate Monitor

            Running Ubuntu with high refresh rate monitor? You may found that the Firefox web browser does not match with your monitor’s native refresh rate.

            This is a simple tip shows how to change the refresh rate of Firefox, though you have to first set the system refresh rate (Settings -> Displays) to match your monitor.

          • Analyzing Bugzilla Testcases with Bugmon

            As a member of Mozilla’s fuzzing team, our job is not only to find bugs, but to do what we can to help get those bugs fixed as quickly as possible.


            Fuzzing is, in its most basic form, the process of supplying random bits of data to an application in the hopes of triggering unexpected behavior. In relation to Mozilla and those of us fuzzing Firefox, this random data often comes in the form of JavaScript, HTML, CSS, etc., and the unexpected behavior we’re looking for, often presents itself in the form of application crashes or fatal assertions.


            While the information provided by Bugmon is certainly helpful in getting bugs fixed quicker, there are a number of features we’d still like to implement.

            Improvements to the bisection analysis stages may allow us to identify regressions down to a single code change. In these cases, we can automatically update the relevant regression fields which can then be leveraged by other Mozilla bots such as autonag. Additionally, we can automate requests for review by the author of the previously identified code change as they may likely be the best candidate to fix it.

            Finally, one often requested feature is to include support for recording bugs with rr. For those unfamiliar with rr; it is a timeless debugger which allows us to record application failures and replay them deterministically. In combination with pernosco, a web-based rr session browser, we can get these recordings into the hands of developers instantly and without any required setup on their part. Thus, reducing the overhead associated with hard to reproduce or intermittent bugs.

          • Mozilla Addons Blog: Promoted Add-ons Pilot Wrap-up

            A few months ago, we launched a pilot for a new program to help developers promote their extensions on addons.mozilla.org (AMO). The main goal of this program was to increase the number of add-ons that our staff can review and verify as compliant with Mozilla policies and provide developers with options for boosting their discoverability on AMO.

            For the pilot, we tested one iteration of how this type of program might work. Pilot developers would have their add-ons manually reviewed for policy compliance. After successfully passing manual review, the pilot add-ons received a Verified badge on their AMO listing page and in the Firefox Add-ons Manager (about:addons), while we removed the standard warning label about the risks of installing third party software.

          • Mozilla’s Climate Commitments [Ed: Mozilla now resorting to mindless greenwashing as they have no clue how to salvage themselves]

            We can’t save the planet without people, and we understand that the internet is an incredibly powerful tool to help us draw the attention to what needs to happen.

            The first line of order is that Mozilla assumes responsibility for its greenhouse gas emissions: We will reduce our emissions significantly and mitigate what we can’t avoid. We will share what we learn and lead transparently, supporting others on their journeys and continuously exploring ways to increase the resiliency of our communities.

      • CMS

        • People of WordPress: Thelma Mutete – WordPress.org

          From a young age Thelma was encouraged by her father to ‘work hard, and dream big’. In High School, she pursued a career in Computer Science. She said: “I did not know what I would be doing or how I would get there but I just knew that I was going to pursue a career in information technology.”

          She wrote her first line of code at the age of 16 living in Zimbabwe, Africa. This was to mark the beginning of her enthusiasm for computer programming.

          When she joined the school’s computer class, Thelma thought she would learn Excel and Word. Instead, the assignment was to write her first program in C. She said: “It was not easy, but it was very exciting. l remember writing up simple code for a Video Club – a check-in/out for VHS tapes and CDs. Thus began my fascination with computers.”

          Seven years later, she went on to university to study for a Bachelors in Business Management and Information Technology. Her third year internship was at a local web design and hosting company. Though she had hoped her placement would be at a local bank or telecommunications company, the chance to discover website design turned out to be the best thing that could have happened.

          In 2017, Thelma went on to work for a company designing websites using HTML, CSS, PHP, JavaScript and Joomla. She had heard about WordPress but had not used it. She recalls: “People have this misconception that WordPress is not for real developers and it is not secure and at that time I was one of those people.”

      • FSF

        • GNU Projects

          • No kidding! Elektor adds No-Starch books to product line

            Elektor are now proud to be stocking three No Starch Press Books for your entertainment and enjoyment. Firstly, we have the GNU Make book. With GNU being the most widely used build automation tool, its challenging nature and terse language can be enough to put anyone to task, often leaving unsolved problems behind and thus leaving GNU make’s vast potential untapped. The GNU Make Book demystifies GNU make and shows you how to use its best features and let it reach its full potential. The book not only contains a fast and thorough run down of the basics, but also an insight in to more advanced capabilities — you will be an expert in no time!

          • A Few Of My Favorite Things: Amateur Radio

            You might well agree with the previous paragraph, but SDRs provide me with another of my favourite things about radio, namely that using GNU Radio I now have a general purpose digital signal processing playground.

          • The best free drawing software

            GIMP has existed since 1995 as a free, open-source alternative to Adobe Photoshop. You’ll have everything you need to import vector-based artwork for added realism and effects, plus everything you need to successfully edit your photographs. GIMP comes with all the tools you need to create digital art from scratch. It’s a must-have program if you’re into editing images or creating digital art.

            GIMP comes with two main components. The first is an artboard that functions as your primary interface, plus a second rectangular interface that houses all of your main tools. This tool can float anywhere on your desktop, or you can attach it to your artboard for easy access.

            GIMP allows you to create another “floater” by grouping certain tools like layers, brushes, color channels, paths, and history together. If you’re looking for a simple way to streamline your design process, this is it.

            However, the toolbox is where the real magic happens. Here, you have access to utensils such as paintbrushes and pencils and tools that let you blur, sharpen, smudge, clone, erase, and more. The software also offers a Paths tool if you want to draw lines without installing a supplemental vector-based program.

            If you’re a visual effects virtuoso, you can choose from GIMP’s vast assortment of impressive effects. On a final note, GIMP can support community-created plugins as well.

        • Licensing/Legal

          • Elasticsearch licence changed as owner chases more revenue

            The company behind Elasticsearch has changed its licensing in order to prevent “cloud service providers from offering our products as a service without sharing their modifications and the source code of their service management layers”.

          • A license change for Nmap

            It may be kind of an obvious statement, but licensing terms matter in our communities. Even a misplaced word or three can be fatal for a license, which is part of the motivation for the efforts to reduce license proliferation in free-software projects. Over the last few months, various distribution projects have been discussing changes made to the license for the Nmap network scanner; those changes seemed to be adding restrictions that would make the software non-free, though that was not the intent. But the incident does serve to show the importance of license clarity.

            On October 3, Nmap 7.90 was released; it came with a new license, the Nmap Public Source License (NPSL) version 0.92. The link here goes to the Wayback Machine as the usual location for the NPSL was updated to version 0.93 in mid-January. Previous versions of Nmap were available under the GPLv2, with some additional wording with regard to the project’s definition of a “derivative work”.

            As part of the release announcement and changelog for Nmap 7.90, the license change was made openly: “Upgraded the Nmap license [from] a sort of hacked-up version of GPLv2 to a cleaner and better organized version (still based on GPLv2) now called the Nmap Public Source License to avoid confusion.” It did not take long for distributions to start noticing and reacting to the change.

      • Programming/Development

        • What is your favorite Linux scripting or programming language? | Enable Sysadmin

          Of all the scripting and programming language options available to you on the Linux platform, which one is your favorite?

        • When costs are nonlinear, keep it small.

          It shows Preventive Maintenance as a series of small costs. Minor repairs are a series of bigger costs, and major repairs are much bigger than that. Every maintenance delayed escalates into a minor repair and then a major repair — costs increase nonlinearly with time delay.

        • Old compilers and old bugs

          The kernel project goes out of its way to facilitate building with older toolchains. Building a kernel on a new system can be enough of a challenge as it is; being forced to install a custom toolchain first would not improve the situation. So the kernel developers try to keep it possible to build the kernel with the toolchains shipped by most distributors. There are costs to this policy though, including an inability to use newer compiler features. But, as was seen in a recent episode, building with old compilers can subject developers to old compiler bugs too.

          On January 5, Russell King reported on a problem he had been chasing for a long time. Some of his 64-bit Arm systems running 5.4 or later kernels would, on rare occasion, report a checksum failure on the ext4 root filesystem. It could take up to three months of uptime for the problem to manifest itself, making it, as King described it, “unrealistic to bisect”. He had, however, found a way to more reliably reproduce the failure, making the task of finding out when the problem was introduced plausible, at least.

          Starting with King’s findings, a number of developers working in the Arm subsystem looked into the issue; their efforts seemed to point out this commit as the culprit. That change, applied in 2019, relaxed the memory barriers used around I/O accessors, optimizing accesses to I/O memory. Reverting this patch made the problem go away.

        • Callback Function in C++ – Linux Hint

          A callback function is a function, which is an argument, not a parameter, in another function. The other function can be called the principal function. So two functions are involved: the principal function and the callback function itself. In the parameter list of the principal function, the declaration of the callback function without its definition is present, just as object declarations without assignment are present. The principal function is called with arguments (in main()). One of the arguments in the principal function call is the effective definition of the callback function. In C++, this argument is a reference to the definition of the callback function; it is not the actual definition. The callback function itself is actually called within the definition of the principal function.

          The basic callback function in C++ does not guarantee asynchronous behavior in a program. Asynchronous behavior is the real benefit of the callback function scheme. In the asynchronous callback function scheme, the result of the principal function should be obtained for the program before the result of the callback function is obtained. It is possible to do this in C++; however, C++ has a library called future to guarantee the behavior of the asynchronous callback function scheme.

        • Perl/Raku

          • Regarding the closure of rt.cpan.

            Let me preface this short post with this, I don’t have the solution to this problem. Perhaps there is someone in the wider Perl space who is well placed to pick this up, but there seems to be little going on in terms of community engagement.

            In the first week of 2021 I noticed a link to this sunset message for rt.cpan behind displayed on the rt.cpan homepage. Firstly I believe the notification on the page could be highlighted better, grey on grey, on a page with lots of grey isn’t exactly eye catching.

            At the time the linked article didn’t contain much information, besides a date. It has since been updated with links to resources to migrate tickets elsewhere.

            A reply to my post in the perlmonks news section was concerning to me, I shortly found the infrastructure working group post on topicbox (which I find no link to on any of the perl websites, or release documentation). This thread was concerning in so much as a single volunteer has decided to step back, which is of course fine, but it doesn’t seem like the option of asking the wider community if anyone would be willing to step up and take it over has been explored. It doesn’t even seem to be being openly discussed.

          • Perl weekly challenge 096 – Raku
        • Python

          • Python Deque – Linux Hint

            A deque means double-ended-queue with the addition of elements from any end; users can also remove elements from any end. This module comes from the collections library and is implemented using this module. It is generally preferable over the list where we need to have a faster method to append operations. The additions and removal can be done from both container ends. Users can add the values in the deque or remove them from both sides. They can even reverse the entire deque. The tutorial will cover all possible use cases along with elaborate examples for the ease of the users.

            We ideally use the latest version of Python for implementation that is Python x3.8, but if anyone does not have the latest version, even then they can implement it on their versions. It will generate similar results.

          • Python Eclipse and PyDev Installation – Linux Hint

            Eclipse is a framework for interactive development that is being used in software development. It comprises a base platform and an optimized environment customization plug-in framework. On the other hand, PyDev is a third-party module or plug-in, which is used in Eclipse. It is an optimized development platform that facilitates code refactoring, graphic debug, code inspection, and other functions for Python coding. If you are searching for a guide to install and configure both the tools, then you are in the right place.

          • Python Enumerate Function Tutorial – Linux Hint

            Enumerate is a Python built-in method. Enumerate() takes a set (e.g. a tuple) and returns it like an entity of enumeration. In a small statement, its significance can not be described. Although it is unfamiliar to most beginners, as well as some proficient programmers. It enables one to loop and provide an auto-counter about something. A counter is inserted by the enumerate() method as the enumerate object key.

          • Python Map() Function Tutorial – Linux Hint

            Often you may face cases where you need to execute the same procedure on all the objects of an iterable input to generate a new iterable. Python’s map() is an integrated method that enables all the objects to be interpreted and translated into an iterable instead of an explicit loop, usually referred to as mapping. Using a Python for loop is the simplest but using the map, you can also solve this issue without the need for an explicit loop(). When you’re about to implement a transformation method to each object in an iterable, map() helps translate them into a fresh iterable. One of the methods which are promoting a functional programming type in Python is a map(). In this guide, you will learn about how the map() method works with different object types.

          • What is Pony ORM and How to Get Started?

            Pony ORM is a Python programming language directory that enables people to work comfortably with objects kept as tuples in a relational database system. It enables you to deal with the information of the databank, in the form of substances/objects. In the database, there are tables having tuples of data. Conversely, when it is possible to view the data obtained from the databank in object form, it is far more useful when writing the code in an advanced-level object-oriented semantic. If you wish to work with Pony ORM, you have to go through the below-appended steps thoroughly.

        • Shell/Bash/Zsh/Ksh

  • Leftovers

    • The Mechanics of an Absurd Crash: Why Driver Error, Not the KGB, Killed Camus

      1. “The Rebel” is a great book.

      2. I don’t like Sartre, he did nothing for the Resistance (Camus did much), and nothing worthwhile against postwar Stalinism (Camus did much), and his gal-pal was a sexual predator.

    • How to thrive in our changing work environments

      This is the second article in a series on the future of work, as explained in The Shift, a book by Professor Lynda Gratton. Previously, I presented Gratton’s thoughts on five forces that will impact work in the future. In this article, I’ll provide more detail on what Gratton says will be the results of these forces. These forces will create new global work environments, and we must face those new environments head-on.

    • Health/Nutrition

      • Opinion | American Workers Need Paid Sick Leave Right This Minute

        Congress let mandatory paid leave end on Dec. 31. Lawmakers—and employers—need to restore them immediately.

      • As COVID-19 Surges, California Overrides Limits on Nurse Workloads
      • Reading the COVID Fine Print: the Undoing of the Australian Open

        Fifteen chartered planes are involved in the project, transporting more than 1,000 players and team members.  The initial mood was optimistic, even filled with gratitude.  An important international tennis tournament could resume.  Business and sport could resume.

        Then came the shaking realities. It took only a few of the flights to be compromised.  Four travellers on two of the chartered flights had tested positive for COVID-19 on arriving in Australia.  These included a broadcaster, coach and aircrew member on a flight from Los Angeles; the other, from Abu Dhabi, saw a stupefied Canadian coach Sylvain Bruneau return a positive result.  A stunned Bruneau claimed to have “followed all safety protocols and procedures, including testing negative within 72 hours before the flight departure and felt perfectly fine” when boarding the plane.

      • Corporate Media’s Leaked Chinese Documents Confirm China Didn’t Hide Covid-19

        Several reports on China’s response to the Covid-19 pandemic came out late last year, based on what US outlets like CNN, the New York Times and ProPublica claimed to be leaked Chinese documents. Although these reports implied that China was responsible for how bad the pandemic has been because of its downplaying of numbers and censoring of critical information, these narratives are themselves misleading in several ways.

      • Blyncsy’s Patent On Contact Tracing Isn’t A Medical Breakthrough, It’s A Patent Breakdown

        The CDC recommends contact tracing for close contacts of any “confirmed or probable” COVID-19 patients. But doing the job has been left to state and local public health officials. 

        In addition to traditional contact tracing by public health workers, some are using “proximity apps” to track when people are near one another. These apps should be used only with careful respect for user privacy. And they can’t be a substitute for contact tracing done by public health workers. But, if used carefully, such apps could be a useful complement to traditional contact tracing.  

        Unless someone with an absurdly broad patent stops them. In April, while many states were still under the first set of shelter-in-place orders, a Utah company called Blyncsy was building a website to let government agencies know that it wanted to get paid—not for giving them any product, but simply for owning a patent they’d managed to get issued in 2019. In news reports and its own press release, Blyncsy said that anyone doing cellphone-based contact tracing would need to license its patent, U.S. Patent No. 10,198,779, “Tracking proximity relationships and uses thereof.” 

      • NYC Cancels Thousands of Vaccine Appointments Due to Lack of Federal Supply
      • Media Elevate Eugenicists, Sideline Disabled Voices in Discussions of Covid Rationing

        In the sticky conversations around rationing life-saving treatments and vaccines during the Covid pandemic, corporate media have elevated some experts without disclosing their troubling views on disability, aging and the value of human life. Meanwhile, media outlets have largely sidelined the voices of disabled activists and others who could speak on behalf of those most affected by the pandemic.

      • Joining COVAX ‘Not Enough’: Biden Told to Compel Big Pharma to Share Vaccine Recipe With the World

        “If the United States leads the way to expand production, we can overcome scarcity, rationing, and preventable death, suffering, and misery.”

      • Elusive jabs Meduza digs into official claims that millions of Russians were already vaccinated against COVID-19 by mid-January

        Vladimir Putin called for a transition from “large-scale” vaccinations to “mass” vaccinations to begin on January 18. In other words, the vaccines are now supposedly available to everyone in Russia without restrictions. But dramatically increasing the vaccination rate will be difficult — the government is still having trouble supplying vaccines to rural areas, as well as convincing people that it’s safe to take. It’s also unclear how many people have been vaccinated already — government officials haven’t published any official statistics, and no one seems to have any accurate data. The most commonly cited statistic comes from the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), which claimed in a press release that a total of 1.5 million people have been vaccinated. However, the RDIF hasn’t revealed where these data came from or what it’s based on, and it hasn’t been confirmed by any other sources. At the same time, according to the RDIF, the exact same number of doses of “Sputnik V” — one and a half million — had been produced and put into circulation in Russia by the beginning of 2021. Meduza set out to determine the real scale of vaccination in the country — and to find out why there are no reliable data.

      • What Happened When the UK Privatized COVID Food Aid? Children Got Scraps

        As Covid-19 infection rates and deaths hit unprecedented highs in the UK, schools are closed to the majority of pupils. For children in low-income families who would normally receive means-tested free school meals, support is being provided to their parents or caregivers via cash payments, supermarket vouchers, or food parcels. In England, the Department for Education has “strongly encouraged” schools to adopt a “food parcel first approach,” with provision outsourced to private providers in most cases.

        This week, social media has been flooded with photos of food parcels provided by private catering firms, with distressed recipients and right-to-food campaigners branding them inadequate and insulting.

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Lightworks 2021.1 Is Out: Biggest Release For Linux, Mac, And Windows

          The professional-grade cross-platform video editing software Lightworks has received the first major release of Lightworks version 2021.1 for Windows, Linux, and Mac.

          Lightworks 2021.1 is also probably the biggest release in the last ten years as it has rewritten some fundamental foundations and added several new features.

        • Lightworks 2021.1 Released With UI Improvements, Other Video Editor Enhancements

          Lightworks, the professional-grade video editing system that works well on Linux but has remained elusive of its long past open-source promise, is out with its first major release of 2021.

          The new Lightworks 2021.1 release comes following this non-linear video editing system becoming independent of EditShare as its prior parent company. With Lightworks 2021.1 is a big improvement to how it handles frame rates especially for now properly dealing with media content of different frame-rates in the same project. Media with any frame-rate is now properly dealt with in the same project. Lightworks also now preserves the original resolution of clips in a project throughout the effects chain rather than resizing them to the output format.

        • Pseudo-Open Source

          • Privatisation/Privateering

            • Linux Foundation

              • Linux Foundation’s Joshipura: Disaggregation is at the heart of open source, cloud-native and edge

                While disaggregation’s roots in the telecom industry are deeper than shiny new concepts such as cloud-native and ORAN, it’s foundational to open source and those new technologies, according to the Linux Foundation’s Aprit Joshipura.

                During a Wednesday keynote address for FierceTelecom Winter Blitz Week, Joshipura defined disaggregation as the separation of hardware and software, as well as the separation of horizontal layers of software.

                Network disaggregation is “kind of old news,” he said.

        • Security

          • Ransomware took heavy toll on US in 2020: researchers [iophk: Windows TCO]

            The study released Monday by the security firm Emsisoft said ransomware attacks — which encrypt and disable computer systems while demanding a ransom — affected 113 federal, state and municipal governments, 560 health facilities and 1,681 schools, colleges and universities last year.

            “The attacks caused significant, and sometimes life-threatening, disruption: ambulances carrying emergency patients had to be redirected, cancer treatments were delayed, lab test results were inaccessible, hospital employees were furloughed and 911 (emergency) services were interrupted,” the report said.

          • Security updates for Thursday

            Security updates have been issued by Debian (mutt), Fedora (libntlm, mingw-python-pillow, python-pillow, and sudo), Mageia (kernel), SUSE (gdk-pixbuf, perl-Convert-ASN1, samba, and yast2-multipath), and Ubuntu (linux, linux-aws, linux-azure, linux-gcp, linux-hwe-5.4, linux-hwe-5.8, linux-oracle).

          • Pwnable Document Format: Windows PDF viewers outperformed by browser, macOS, Linux counterparts

            PDF viewers built into leading web browsers and applications for macOS and Linux were only susceptible to comparatively trivial attacks such as denial of service (DoS).


            Susceptible to eight of 10 attack techniques, the worst culprits overall were PDF-Xchange Viewer and PDF-Xchange Viewer for Windows.

            PDFelement and iSkysoft, prone only to DoS, were honorable exceptions to the otherwise unimpressive Windows scorecard.

          • Fear, Uncertainty, Doubt/Fear-mongering/Dramatisation

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • Why EFF Doesn’t Support Bans On Private Use of Face Recognition

              But what about private use? It also can exacerbate injustice, including its use by police contractors, retail establishments, business improvement districts, and homeowners.

              Still, EFF does not support banning private use of the technology. Some users may choose to deploy it to lock their mobile devices or to demonstrate the hazards of the tech in government hands. So instead of a prohibition on private use, we support strict laws to ensure that each of us is empowered to choose if and by whom our faceprints may be collected. This requires mandating informed opt-in consent and data minimization, enforceable through a robust private right of action.

              Illinois has had such a law for more than a decade. This approach properly balances the human right to control technology—both to use and develop it, and to be free from other people’s use of it.

            • Oakland’s Progressive Fight to Protect Residents from Government Surveillance

              Oakland is now (as far as we know) the first city to ban government use of voice recognition technology. This is an important step, given the growing proliferation of this invasive form of surveillance, at home and abroad. Oakland also may be the first city to ban government use of any technology that can identify a person based on “physiological, biological, or behavioral characteristics ascertained from a distance.” This would include recognition of a person’s distinctive gait or manner of walking.

              Last June, the California city of Santa Cruz became the first U.S. city to ban its police department from using predictive policing technology. Just a few weeks ago, New Orleans, Louisiana, also prohibited the technology, as well as certain forms of biometric surveillance. With last week’s amendments, Oakland became the largest city to ban predictive policing.

              Oakland is also the first city to incorporate these prohibitions into a more comprehensive Community Control of Police Surveillance (CCOPS) framework. Its ordinance not only prohibits these particularly pernicious forms of surveillance, but also ensures that police cannot obtain any other forms of surveillance technology absent permission from the city council following input from residents. This guarantees transparency, accountability, and community engagement before any privacy-invasive surveillance technology can be adopted by local government agencies.

            • Facial recognition at German police authorities increased by more than a third

              Millions of faces, fingerprints and palm prints are stored in German police databases. Law enforcement agencies are also processing more and more biometric data at the EU level.

            • Tencent has been caught spying on your web browsing history with QQ Messenger

              After the spying revelation, Tencent quickly released a new version of QQ Messenger without the web history scraping functionality and claimed that the Chinese company was only previously looking at its millions of users’ web browsing history as a way of ”checking whether malicious programs were using certain websites to access QQ.”

    • Defence/Aggression

      • ‘Pure Sadism’: Biden Blasted for Continuing Trump’s Recognition of Guaidó Coup Regime and Deadly Sanctions in Venezuela

        “How about a new Good Neighbor Policy on non-interference?” asked CodePink co-founder Medea Benjamin. 

      • Washington Post “Expert” Linked to Defense Companies Hypes North Korea Missile Threat

        An alarming report published Monday in the Washington Post claimed that North Korean leader Kim Jong-un could fire an intercontinental ballistic missile right as Joe Biden is inaugurated. 

      • The Military Industrial Complex’s Silent Coup to Ensure Nothing Changes

        No doubt about it: the coup d’etat was successful. That January 6 attempt by so-called insurrectionists to overturn the election results was not the real coup, however. Those who answered President Trump’s call to march on the Capitol were merely the fall guys, manipulated into creating the perfect crisis for the Deep State—a.k.a. the Police State a.k.a. the Military Industrial Complex a.k.a. the Techno-Corporate State a.k.a. the Surveillance State—to swoop in and take control.

      • A Brief But Portentous Insurrection

        The civil rights protests of the late 1950s and 1960s; the anti-war protests of the latter half of the 1960s and early 1970s; more civil rights protests (these have occurred repeatedly) in the latter half of the 1970s and the 1980s; the recent climate protests and those of the Black Lives Matter movement all sought to pressure changes in government behavior and policy. They could at times get disruptive—by stopping traffic in Washington, D.C., or being met with unwarranted police brutality, but no one characterized them as attempts to overthrow the country’s democratic system. In fact, George W. Bush, when faced with a huge February 2003 protest against the invasion of Iraq, dismissed the participants as a “focus group.”

        However, what happened in Washington, D.C. on Wednesday, January 6, was qualitatively different. With President Trump playing the role of agent-provocateur, the events of that day sought the overthrow—based on demonstrated falsehoods—of a legitimate, thoroughly vetted national election. It sought the replacement of the election winner by the egomaniac who had lost. If successful, it would have undermined the integrity of the nation’s electoral process, putting in jeopardy the nation’s democratic form of government. Whatever one thinks of the policies and practices of American governments, challenging them in this fashion is not the product of protest or civil disobedience. it is insurrection.

      • CIA Whistleblower: Biden Intel Pick Avril Haines Approved Obama Drone Strike Kill List, Hid Torture

        Avril Haines, Biden’s nominee for director of national intelligence, began her confirmation hearing Tuesday. She was President Obama’s top lawyer on the National Security Council from 2010 to 2013 and CIA deputy director from 2013 to 2015, where she authorized using drone strikes to carry out targeted extrajudicial assassinations. “We know that in almost all cases that she said it was legal to put these names on the kill list, and people were subsequently killed by drone, including American citizens,” says CIA whistleblower John Kiriakou, who exposed the Bush-era torture program and was the only official jailed in connection to it. He also discusses Haines’s handling of CIA agents who illegally hacked the computers of the Senate Intelligence Committee to thwart its investigation into the CIA’s detention and interrogation program that used torture methods like waterboarding.

      • Profiting from Pardons: Giuliani Aide Told CIA Whistleblower a Trump Pardon Would Cost $2 Million

        With less than 12 hours before the end of his presidency, Donald Trump issued 143 pardons and commutations, including a pardon for Steve Bannon, his former chief strategist and campaign manager. Trump, who has pardoned other associates and allies during his single term, has so far rejected calls to pardon prominent whistleblowers including WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange and NSA whistleblowers Edward Snowden and Reality Winner. Details continue to emerge about how allies of Trump have personally profited from people seeking pardons. We speak with John Kiriakou, a former CIA analyst and case officer who exposed the Bush-era torture program and was the only official jailed in connection to it, about the pardon system. He says an associate of Trump personal attorney Rudy Giuliani offered him a pardon for $2 million, which Kiriakou declined to pay. “They don’t see this as a bribe,” says Kiriakou. “This is the way Washington works.”

      • Treaty Banning the Ultimate Weapon of Mass Destruction Enters into Force

        After decades of campaigns of every kind to “ban the bomb,” to prevent the nuclear arms race, to freeze the arms race, humankind finally has a global treaty.

        The nuclear weapons prohibition outlaws not just their development, testing and possession, but forbids any threatened use — commonly known as “nuclear deterrence.” Like with other multi-generational struggles against slavery, torture, the death penalty, child labor, TPNW campaigners justly call it “the beginning of the end of nuclear weapons.”

      • Where have all the military drones gone?

        The German Bundeswehr is one of the armies that flew unmanned systems for reconnaissance already in the 1960s. The first aircraft resembled a model aeroplane and came from the US Army, later they looked like a rocket. From the turn of the millennium, Airbus in particular benefited from the German drone programme.

      • Rep. Steve Cohen: QAnon fan Rep. Lauren Boebert gave Capitol tour to “large” group before riot

        Cohen told CNN that he and House Budget Committee chairman John Yarmuth, D-Ky., saw Boebert leading the group in the Cannon House Office Building tunnel prior to the siege, which left five dead. Cohen’s comments came after Rep. Mikie Sherrill, D-N.J., alleged that members of Congress took groups on “reconnaissance” tours the day before the riot and 34 House Democrats have called for a probe into the “suspicious behavior” leading up to the insurrection. The House members noted that the tours were “unusual” because the Capitol has been closed to public tours due to the coronavirus pandemic since last March and said that some of the visitors “appeared to be associated with the rally” that preceded the riot.

      • The New Humanitarian | South Sudan’s precarious peace agreement

        On the streets of South Sudan’s capital city, billboards honour the country’s politicians for ending five years of conflict that cost almost 400,000 lives and displaced millions. “Peacemakers” and “Children of God” declares one poster, quoting the Bible alongside a photo of the president.

        But nearly a year after President Salva Kiir formed a unity government with opposition leader Riek Machar – now the vice-president – key parts of the agreement have not been implemented amid entrenched distrust between the two men, funding shortages, and renewed fighting that cost thousands of lives in 2020.

        Nyadid Racho from western Pibor – where famine is thought to be occurring – says she has seen little benefit from the deal. The 40-year-old told The New Humanitarian ongoing clashes between community militias cost the lives of two of her children last year – both starved to death within days of each other.

        “If we hadn’t been attacked, and if our cattle were not taken, my children would still be alive,” Racho said.

        Many South Sudanese who spoke to TNH on a visit to the country in December questioned the political will for peace, while analysts fear disenchantment within Machar’s camp over the slow progress could soon fuel new outbreaks of violence.

    • Transparency/Investigative Reporting

      • Trump Caps off Law and Order Legacy With Record Executions, No Mercy for Whistleblowers

        Among the final acts of Donald J. Trump’s time in office was to approve a last-minute flurry of presidential pardons. On the list are many of his disgraced cronies, including Steve Bannon, Paul Manafort, and Roger Stone. But there was no mercy, evidently, for whistleblowers like Edward Snowden or Reality Winner, nor for Wikileaks co-founder Julian Assange. 

    • Environment

      • Reformed trade rules can help to save the climate

        If the British government agrees to reformed trade rules, that could help the crucial climate talks it will chair in November.

      • After ‘Incredible First Steps’ on KXL and Paris, Biden Urged to ‘Go Further’ on Climate

        “The Biden White House needs to chart a much more aggressive course for dealing with our climate emergency.”

      • ‘The Last Administration Able to Act in Time’: Youth Climate Leaders Say Global Future Depends on Boldness of Biden

        “Our eyes are on you,” the group of campaigners said. “The time for lies is over.”

      • Energy

        • Two Major Pacific Northwest Fossil Fuel Projects Dealt Massive Setbacks In One Day

          On President Donald Trump’s last full day in office, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) met with a packed agenda, making key decisions on multiple pipeline projects and other matters affecting electricity markets.

        • Keystone XL Pipeline Canceled. Here’s What It Means for the Future Fight Against Fossil Fuels

          The cross-border pipeline would have carried 830,000 barrels per day of Canadian tar sands oil to the Gulf of Mexico, where it would be refined and exported, providing a crucial outlet for landlocked oil from Alberta. But the mundane infrastructure project became a symbol of the broader fight against climate change, sparking a sustained campaign against drilling and fossil fuel infrastructure across the continent. 

        • Biden nixes Keystone XL permit, halts Arctic refuge leasing

          Environmentalists have been critical of the pipeline, particularly because it’s supposed to carry oil made from tar sands, whose production is carbon intensive.

          Tribes have also expressed opposition, saying that the pipeline would cross onto their lands and violate their treaty rights.

          Biden, in the executive order, argued that the pipeline “disserves” U.S. national interest.

      • Wildlife/Nature

        • The Rebuilding Years Begin Now
        • Dire Wolf DNA Shows Distinct New World Lineage

          The dire wolf (Canis dirus), prototype of the various wolves that were important members of the House Stark family of characters in Game of Thrones, was found uniquely in North America until its extinction in the late Pleistocene (~13,000 years ago). The relationship between this species and the indigenous gray wolf (Canis lupus), the coyote (Canis latrans), and the Asiatic wild dog or dhole (Cuon alpinus) is uncertain, however, based purely on shared morphologic characteristics. Perhaps this “lone wolf” property, and its great size (~68kg/150lbs, despite artistic exaggeration), contributed to its iconic stature in popular culture as diverse as George R.R. Martin and the Grateful Dead, but “mythic” is not too exaggerated a description of this mighty beast in popular culture.

          Recently, a diverse and international group of researchers* have explored the relationships between these North American canid species, using both morphological characteristics and genetic comparisons between modern wolves and dire wolf fossils, from both mitochondria and, in a more limited extent genomic DNA (albeit focusing on comparisons of only one gene, COL1). Sites where the more than 700 fossil dire wolf specimens used in these studies were obtained (and their associated academic institutions) were Natural Trap Cave, Wyoming (University of Kansas); Gigantobison Bay, Idaho (Idaho Museum Natural History); Sheridan Pit, Ohio (Cincinnati Museum Center); Guy Wilson Cave, Tennessee (University of Tennessee); American Falls Reservoir, Idaho (Idaho Museum Natural History); and Rancho La Brea Tar Seeps, California (La Brea Tar Pits and Museum), the latter being the predominant site for obtaining dire wolf fossils (100-fold more than gray wolf fossils from this site).


          While the information is limited (e.g., only five dire wolf genomic DNA samples were sufficiently intact to be assayed), the results from these studies are another example of the power of genetic analysis to “fill in the blanks” from the fossil record to illuminate animal (and human) migration in the Pleistocene era that led to population patterns of animals in the New World in the Holocene (current) Era.

      • Overpopulation

        • BirthStrike: The Movement to End All Movements

          Disturbingly, this kind of sentiment has now filtered out into a wider cultural malaise of anti-natalism that is increasingly seen as progressive and in humanity’s best interest. Such anti-humanist ideas have become prevalent in modern environmentalism, seized by radical movements such as BirthStrike.

    • Finance

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • Opinion | Even After an Insurrection, Corporate Media Can’t Let Go of False Balance

        If editors learn anything from the events of the last four years, it should be that “balance” is a dangerous substitute for fairness and accuracy.

      • ‘A Fitting End’: Hours Before Leaving Office, Trump Quietly Revokes Order Restricting Lobbying by Former Federal Officials

        “Great summary of Trump’s many farcical ‘drain the swamp’ betrayals.”

      • Opinion | “He’s Better Than Trump!” Is No Defense of Biden. Citizens Deserve More.

        If Democrats cannot critically engage with Obama policies that saw large numbers of innocent civilians in Yemen or Pakistan killed by drones, or an uncomfortably close relationship with Wall St., then the lessons of Trumpism are lost.

      • Progressive International Calls on Biden to End Illegal US Sanctions Responsible for ‘Untold Death and Devastation’

        “Biden must take urgent action to restore the right of all countries to have sovereign relations with the world, untrammeled by U.S. interference through their sanctions policy.”

      • Opinion | GOP Tickles the Dragon’s Tail

        After years of flirting with America’s right wing and egging on a growing rage, the GOP establishment is “shocked” by Trump’s success—and scrambling to save face.

      • It’s Time for the Left to Pressure Biden — and the Political Class as a Whole
      • American Truth & Reconciliation Commission

        The devolution in the modern era, from truth to lies, begins with Harry Truman and the National Security Act (NSA) of 1947. Truth: the supreme law provides that only Congress can declare war. This is a core, nondelegable, power of the Congress. The Constitution, the solemn pact between the people and the government, is clear on this. Yet in the NSA of 1947 the President was not only given the power to declare war without Congress, but to initiate nuclear war and death of humanity worldwide, on the say so of a single man, a Nuclear Dictator, anathema in a country repulsed by mere Kings.

        Truth: government exists to protect life and liberty. But the lie embraced was government is willing to kill everyone because: “better dead than red.” This is the same view embraced by Hitler when he sent 12-year-old children to the front (by then their front yards) to die in a “total war” to defend Nazism no matter the nihilism of total destruction.

      • Opinion | Curb Your Presidentialism: Some Post-Trump Advice for a Biden Administration

        Presidentialism is American Exceptionalism transferred to the arena of politics. It is a vast and dangerous delusion. The sooner we wake up to that fact the better for our democracy. 

      • Warning Against Further ‘Erosion’ of Civil Liberties, Tlaib Leads Charge Against New Domestic Terrorism Laws

        “While many may find comfort in increased national security powers in the wake of this attack, we must emphasize that we have been here before and we have seen where that road leads.”

      • Opinion | We Must Act With Unprecedented Boldness to Meet These Historical Crises

        The job of Congress now is to listen to the American people, move our country boldly forward on a path to economic success and show voters that Democrats are prepared to do everything possible to improve their lives.

      • Revealed: Israeli Settler Groups With Ties To the US Are Evicting Palestinians in Mass

        Occupied East Jerusalem — Nearly 20 Palestinian families face homelessness amid a raging pandemic and cold, wet winter in occupied East Jerusalem because of eviction lawsuits from Israeli settler groups backed by wealthy American donors.

      • Trump Pardons Steve Bannon
      • Under Pressure From Workers, Biden Fires ‘Extreme, Anti-Union’ Labor Board Lawyer

        “Today is a good day,” declared the SEIU, which had called on the president to immediately oust NLRB General Counsel Peter Robb.

      • Ocasio-Cortez, Sanders Lead Call for Solidarity With #HuntsPointStrike

        “Essential workers should not have to go on strike for decent pay, and no worker should be threatened for exercising their constitutional rights.”

      • Opinion | Ten Ways Biden Can Be Transformational (Even Without Congress)

        Biden can and must wield his presidential powers through Executive Orders and regulations. The problems America is facing demand it.

      • On “True Democracy”

        “True democracy in America is quite new; you can date it to the civil rights era. If Trump’s Republican Party isn’t checked, we could easily devolve into what political scientists call competitive authoritarianism, in which elections still take place but the system is skewed to entrench autocrats.”

        That was a remarkable two sentences.

      • Progressives Gear Up to Fight for More Than Just “Unity” From President Biden
      • Joy, Relief, and Healing as Biden Ends Trump’s Racist Muslim Ban in Day One Executive Order

        “This is a momentous occasion for the millions of Americans who were separated by the ban and those who stood up against this injustice at airports nationwide.”

      • On U.S. “Adversaries”

        What are these “national interests”? And how does Russia, for example, challenge them? How did Russia, a friend under Boris Yeltsin in the 1990s (a friend so valued that Bill Clinton saved him from near-certain electoral defeat in 1996), come to oppose U.S. national interests? Well, it opposes the expansion of NATO, an anti-Russian military alliance that has been expanding relentlessly following the collapse of the Soviet Union and the Warsaw Pact in 1991. In discouraging the entry of Georgia and Ukraine, countries sharing long borders with Russia, it challenges the U.S. “national interest” in stationing troops in those countries. In re-annexing the Crimean Peninsula (following the pro-NATO, U.S.-backed coup in Ukraine in 2014) to prevent the historical Russian naval base falling into NATO hands, it challenged the U.S. national interest to turn the Black Sea into a NATO lake.

        Similarly, in selling natural gas to the Germans Russia deprives U.S. suppliers of a vast market, undermining “our” interests. Is it not clear? And in Syria, Russia works against our national interests! “We” want to topple the Assad regime. Why? Because in 2011 during the Arab Spring warmonger Hillary Clinton declared that Assad had lost his legitimacy by firing on his own people. She thought it would be possible to topple him by recruiting a rebel army. In the end the U.S. was obliged to work with a motley array of groups aligned with al-Qaeda, while ISIL took over large swathes of the country, as the forces of the secular regime struggled to prevent a victory by Islamists who would surely have smashed every historic church in Damascus. Russia, militarily aligned with Syria since the 1970s, intervened in Sept. 2015 to assist state forces in repressing some of the most grotesque fiends on the planet. In the process Russia has strengthened its position in the region, increased its cooperation with Iran and Hizbollah, and stabilized a regime the U.S. had tried to destroy. You see how Russia is opposing U.S. national interests?

      • Democrats Urged to Reject ‘Desperate’ McConnell Effort to Preserve Filibuster and Kneecap Biden’s Agenda

        Progressives denounced McConnell’s call to uphold the legislative filibuster as a “blatant attempt to undermine the Democratic majority before it has even been seated.”

      • ‘The Lost Cause in Some Ways Won the Civil War’

        Janine Jackson interviewed historian Keri Leigh Merritt about the New Lost Cause for the January 15, 2021, episode of CounterSpin. This is a lightly edited transcript.

      • Facing Unprecedented Challenges, Joe Biden Becomes 46th US President
      • Kamala Harris Sworn in as First Woman Vice President by Justice Sonia Sotomayor
      • Opinion | Donald Trump and the Danger of a Loser Who Cannot Admit Defeat

        Whether it is deaths from Covid-19 or his own election defeat, admitting loss is something Trump finds impossible to do.

      • ‘He’s Gone’: Celebrations as ‘Worst and Most Dangerous President in American History’ Departs White House

        “Goodbye and good riddance Donald Trump. See you at your trial,” said Sen. Ed Markey.

      • Trump Is Walking Out of the White House Into a Minefield of Legal Perils
      • “Unmitigated Disaster”: Michael Eric Dyson on How Trump Turned White House into “Fulcrum of Fascism”

        As Joe Biden and Kamala Harris are inaugurated and the Trump presidency comes to an end, we look back at his regime with author and analyst Michael Eric Dyson. “The Trump presidency has been an unmitigated disaster,” Dyson says. His “direct assault” on democratic processes resulted in a “neofascist presidency that attempted to undermine the very legitimacy of the democracy that he was put in office to uphold.”

      • “This Is Democracy’s Day”: Joe Biden Sworn In as 46th President of the United States

        Biden and Kamala Harris took the oaths of office on steps of the U.S. Capitol amid a catastrophic public health crisis and economic meltdown made worse by Trump’s incompetence and malfeasance.

      • After Capitol Breach, More Domestic Terrorism Laws Aren’t the Answer
      • Inauguration Has Happened, Google And Facebook Should End The Ban On Political Advertisements

        In light of the events at the Capitol, social media and other online companies have been reevaluating who they let speak on their platforms. The ban of President Trump from Twitter, Facebook, and various other platforms has sparked fierce debate over moderation and free speech. But Google’s recently reinstituted ban on political advertisements until at least inauguration day and the continued ban from Facebook are silencing voices that need to be heard the most – those speaking about state and local political issues.

      • Overturning the Presidential Election Result In Southwest Virginia

        The case of Western Virginia’s Congressional representatives is instructive in this regard.

        I happen to live in the district of Morgan “the Morgue” Griffith (R-VA09) who, with the advantages of incumbency and hefty corporate subventions, has made it into something of a fiefdom.

      • Enough with the Goddamned Secrets! Open Up the Government Joe!

        That is not the question Biden should be considering. Rather, he should be opening up about government secrets with the American public, who for far too long have been kept increasingly in the dark.

        The truth is that over the years, especially since the end of World War II, with President Harry Truman’s establishment of a “national security state” and the launching of the Cold War, the United states, though commonly referred to in our national mythology, in speeches by politicians and in the media as “the world’s greatest democracy” is actually a bureaucratic state with secrets so deep, dark and wide-spread that, as Daniel Ellsberg reveals in his latest book The Doomsday Machine, even the president and the secretary of defense for generations haven’t been told the actual war plans that the nation would follow in the event of a nuclear conflict with China or Russia.

      • Biden Inaugural Confronts the Jan. 6 Riot Head-On, Calls for an End to “This Uncivil War”

        It’s become a ProPublica tradition for our president, Richard Tofel, who wrote a book on President Kennedy’s inaugural address, to offer an instant analysis of such speeches. Here are his thoughts for today.

      • The Way Forward: Can the Left Push Biden to Be a Transformative President Like LBJ, FDR & Lincoln?

        We look at the path forward for the Biden-Harris administration and the role of social movements with political strategist Waleed Shahid and author and analyst Michael Eric Dyson. Shahid, spokesperson for the progressive political action committee Justice Democrats, says Biden could be “one of the most transformative presidents” in U.S. history if he acts boldly. “But it will take an immense amount of pressure on Joe Biden, on the political system, on the political class for him to get there,” says Shahid.

      • Goodbye, Trump! Parting Is Such Sweet Joy

        I often get asked, often by white people, “What will you do without Donald Trump?” Or “What will you write about when Trump is out of the news?” Some people even have the gall to suggest “you’re going to miss Trump when he’s gone.”

      • John Marshall And Nolan Higdon – The Project Censored Show

        Notes: John Marshall has 40 years’ experience in the high-technology industry, including starting several companies; his specialty is advertising technology and his new book can be found here.

      • You’re History
      • The Interior Lives of the Transnational Asian Diaspora

        In Sheung-King’s You Are Eating an Orange. You Are Naked., an unnamed man in his early 20s tells his lover stories to woo her: scenes from Chungking Express, facts about Kenny G, the ending of Yōko Tawada’s Persona. Their affair unspools over years, mostly in Toronto, sometimes in Macau, Tokyo, and Taipei. But the book is not so much plotted as recorded, a log of a couple in conversation.

      • What Joe Biden Can Learn From the Worst President In American History

        During the presidential debate on September 29, 2020, in Cleveland, Joe Biden bluntly told Donald Trump “You’re the worst president America has ever had.” This is a difficult judgement to either affirm or deny. Given the broad sweep of American history, there have been many presidents who have been bad in different ways. Twelve presidents owned enslaved people, something that Trump at his worst is not guilty of. Other presidents enabled either slavery or American apartheid.

      • On the Streets of D.C., How the Biden Presidency Began

        Washington, D.C.—On the final morning of the Trump presidency, the city was quiet.

      • Here’s What Students Think Biden Needs to Do in His First 100 Days

        Today, we might be breathing a collective sigh of relief—but the work has only begun. President Joe Biden faces a wildly daunting first 100 days in office. On the heels of major vaccine developments, Biden committed to getting “at least 100 million Covid-19 vaccine shots into the arms of the American people in the first 100 days.” Beyond this obviously critical effort, there is only so much the new administration can focus on in his first three months. We asked students across the country what they see as the most pressing issue the Biden White House should devote its time and political capital to addressing. We received a wide range of responses, taking in a number of pressing issues affecting young people today.

      • 9/11 and January 6: the Enormous Cost of intelligence Failure

        The 9/11 terror attacks and the insurrection on January 6th were classic failures, with flawed assumptions leading to the failure to incorporate new evidence into intelligence products.  In 2001, the CIA assumed the terror attack would take place against U.S. bases or facilities on foreign soil, and did not sufficiently consider the weaponization of commercial aircraft flying in the United States.  In 2020, various law enforcement and intelligence agencies assumed that the protests scheduled for January 6th would be in the name of free speech and the First Amendment.  They did not anticipate the involvement of so many militia groups; a super Trump rally; and Trump’s incitement of a violent attack on a specific target.  They did anticipate a violent effort to reverse the results of a presidential election that would involve the taking of hostages or even worse.

        In both 2001 and 2020, the Federal Bureau of Investigation did not believe foreign or domestic terrorists had the organization and the wherewithal to exact such an horrific attack.  In virtually every intelligence failure, there was ample information available that warranted discarding the prevailing assumption or at least questioning the fixed notions that became conventional wisdom.

      • Fox News Needs To Accept Some Of The Blame For The Insurrection; But That Doesn’t Mean We Toss Out The 1st Amendment

        While lots of people have been blaming social media for the insurrection at the Capitol a few weeks back, fewer have recognized that Fox News is at least as much to blame, if not more. As we’ve covered in the past, Yochai Benkler’s book, Network Propaganda, went into great detail with tons of data and evidence, to highlight how, contrary to popular belief, the crazy conspiracy theories don’t really spread that quickly on social media… until after Fox News picks them up. That book also highlights how, while “left-wing” media has its own fair share of wacky conspiracy theories, they don’t spread to nearly the same degree, and competition among different news venues includes attempts to debunk the wackier conspiracy theories. The same is just not there in the Fox News media-sphere.

      • Political party ‘A Just Russia’ to merge with two other ‘left-wing’ forces

        The Russian political party “A Just Russia” (SR) will merge with the “For Truth” and “Patriots of Russia” parties in the near future, SR leader Sergey Mironov announced on Wednesday, January 20.

      • ‘Even Nixon Didn’t Pardon His Cronies on the Way Out’: Trump Grants Clemency to Bannon on Final Day of Presidency

        “Amazingly, in his final 24 hours in office, Donald Trump found one more way to fail to live up to the ethical standard of Richard Nixon.”

      • The Nazification of the Republican Party

        After the war, Germany banned Nazi flags and neo-Nazis. In fact, the only way that Nazi paraphernalia got into Germany was through smuggling from other countries such as the United States, like from Nazi propagandist Gerhard Lauck in Nebraska, the man called the “Farm Belt Führer” who served four years in a German prison for distributing banned pro-Nazi materials throughout Europe.

        I know this because I teach a course on White Supremacy at Smith College that focuses on anti-Semitism, anti-Black racism, and the many intersecting components of white supremacist ideology. After more than 30 years of organizing and teaching about fascism as a Black feminist activist and academic, I know the destructive influence of these noxious ideas, and I teach young people how to interpret and resist them.

      • If You Miss Donald Trump, You’ll Love Joe Biden

        But there was nothing new about the way he governed.

        In policy, even with his vicious tone, Trump was a typical Republican president.  Ford told New York City to drop dead, Reagan called Blacks “welfare queens” and dog-whistled to the Klan, Bush legalized torture—nothing Trump did was worse than those. In some respects, Trump wasn’t much worse from Democrats.

      • Biden’s ‘American Rescue Plan’ and Its Opponents

        US Economy Faltering Fast

        New filings for unemployment benefits have been rising rapidly. From a ‘low’ of about 1 million/week in December last week’s initial claims for benefits topped 1.4 million—when  both benefit programs, State administered and the Federal PUA, are counted .  Another red flag indicator is consumer spending (70% of the US economy) and retail sales, its largest component. The latter fell -1.4%% in November and another -0.7% in December, according to just released US Commerce data. These are typical months during which they rise the fastest.  Another indicator of consumer spending in growing trouble, credit card spending fell an even larger -2.7% in December, according to Chase Bank’s database of 30 million credit and debit card holders. Still another red flag is trade. The US trade deficit based on recent months is now running $85 billion a month and close to $1 trillion a year. Deficits mean US exports, and thus US production for exports, is trailing imports to the US badly—and thus contributing to US GDP contraction in 2021 still further.

      • DOJ Argues Supreme Court Should Vacate “Harmful” Trump Twitter Decision

        In a supplemental brief filed Tuesday, the DOJ acknowledges that the case is moot now that President Joe Biden has been sworn-in because the plaintiffs only sued Trump in his official capacity, but argues it should still grant certiorari, vacate the 2nd Circuit’s decision and instruct Buchwald to dismiss the suit.

      • Parler Tries to Survive With Help From Russian Company

        Mr. Davis said he believed that Parler was trying to build its own infrastructure. On Monday, Mr. Matze appeared to support that notion in an interview on Fox News, saying, “We really need to build our own infrastructure and our own technology.”

        In a legal filing on the same day, Mr. Matze said Parler did not have “the technical and security expertise to host the Parler environment on its own,” adding, “Nor is it feasible for Parler to do so.”

        He said the computers and other equipment needed to host Parler’s site would cost more than $6 million and take weeks to arrive. “Simply put, it would not be possible for Parler itself to acquire the necessary servers and related security infrastructure in a commercially reasonable time frame,” he said.

      • Pure hate finds a home: How Parler became the social media platform for millions of Trump supporters

        Notably, conservative billionaire Robert Mercer and his daughter, Rebekah, are investors in the platform. Rebekah Mercer helped co-found it with Matze. The Mercers are well known for their investments in other conservative causes, including Nigel Farage’s Brexit campaign, Breitbart News and Cambridge Analytica. The connection to Cambridge Analytica has, in particular, alarmed experts, who worry that Parler may harvest unnecessary data from unwitting users.

      • The West once dreamed of democracy taking root in rural China

        Seeding democracy was not the party’s plan when it introduced elections in the countryside in 1988. Corruption was rampant among rural party bosses. Many were incompetent. The party feared that farmers’ anger would foment unrest. Making village leaders more accountable could help keep the lid on, officials thought. But, to the party’s chagrin, its stooges did not always win. In the 2000s Chinese leaders re-emphasised that (appointed) party secretaries, not elected committees, still had the final say in villages. In the West, dreams gradually faded of democracy spreading upwards through the system. But every three years, as the law decreed, villages still held elections, and, occasionally, snubbed the party’s preferred candidates.

        Late in 2020 rural residents began voting for their leaders once again. It is a process that will take months to complete, with different places conducting polls at different times. In this cycle the party is pulling out all the stops to get its way.

      • Twitter Locks Out Chinese Embassy in U.S. Over Post on Uighurs

        The account is still locked, a Twitter spokesman confirmed, meaning the Chinese Embassy has not deleted the tweet. The Chinese Embassy account, @ChineseEmbinUS, has not posted since Jan. 8, having published at least a dozen more tweets after the one breaking Twitter’s rules. The Chinese Embassy declined immediate comment. Chinese state media had earlier called Twitter’s decision to delete the tweet “hypocrisy.”

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • Content Moderation Case Study: Using Hashes And Scanning To Stop Cloud Storage From Being Used For Infringement (2014)

        Summary: Since the rise of the internet, the recording industry has been particularly concerned about how the internet can and will be used to share infringing content. Over time, the focus of that concern has shifted as the technology (as well as copyright laws) have shifted. In the early 2000s, most of the concern was around file sharing applications, services and sites, such as Napster, Limewire, and The Pirate Bay. However, after 2010, much of the emphasis switched to so-called “cyberlockers.”

      • Political Satire Is Protected Speech – Even If You Don’t Get the Joke

        Should an obviously fake Facebook post—one made as political satire—end with a lawsuit and a bill to pay for a police response to the post? Of course not, and that’s why EFF filed an amicus brief in Lafayette City v. John Merrifield.

        In this case, Merrifield made an obviously fake Facebook event satirizing right-wing hysteria about Antifa. The announcement specifically poked fun at the well-established genre of fake Antifa social media activity, used by some to drum up anti-Antifa sentiment. However, the mayor of Lafayette didn’t get the joke, and now Lafayette City officials want Merrifield to pay for the costs of policing the fake event.

        In EFF’s amicus brief filed in support of Merrifield in the Louisiana Court of Appeal, we trace the rise and proliferation of obviously parodic fake events. These events range from fake concerts (“Drake live at the Cheesecake Factory”) to quixotic events designed to forestall natural disasters (“Blow Your Saxophone at Hurricane Florence”) to fake destruction of local monuments (“Stone Mountain Implosion”). This kind of fake event is a form of online speech. It’s a crucial form of social commentary whether it makes people laugh, builds resilience in the face of absurdity, or criticizes the powerful.

      • Roskomnadzor orders TikTok and VKontakte ‘to prevent the involvement of minors in unauthorized protests’

        Russia’s censorship agency, Roskomnadzor, has ordered the social networks TikTok and VKontakte to prevent “the involvement of minors in unauthorized rallies.” This was announced in two separate statements on the agency’s website on Wednesday, January 20.

      • St. Petersburg court bans distribution of anime series ‘Death Note’ in Russia

        St. Petersburg’s Kolpinsky District Court has banned the distribution of the Japanese animes Death Note and Inuyashiki via the website “jut.su,” Mediazona reported on Wednesday, January 20.

    • Freedom of Information/Freedom of the Press

    • Civil Rights/Policing

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

      • With Trump Loss, Charter Backs Off FCC Request To Allow Broadband Caps

        To be very clear: American consumers don’t like broadband usage caps. At all. Most Americans realize (either intellectually or on instinct) that monthly broadband usage caps and overage fees are little more than monopolistic cash grabs. They are confusing, frustrating price hikes on captive customers that accomplish absolutely none of their stated benefits. They don’t actually help manage congestion, and they aren’t about “fairness” — since if fairness were a goal you’d have a lot of grandmothers paying $5-$10 a month for broadband because they only check their email twice a day.

      • In Departing Statement, FCC Boss Ajit Pai Pretends He ‘Served The People’

        Ajit Pai’s tenure wasn’t devoid of value. He arguably oversaw some decent moves that will bring more spectrum to market (albeit not without some caveats and casualties), and he implemented the nation’s first suicide hotline (988). But by and large it’s pretty hard to not see Pai’s tenure as a giant middle finger to consumer welfare, and a four year, sustained ass kissing for the nation’s biggest telecom monopolies.

    • Monopolies

      • Anti-anti-suit injunctions create ‘risky’ FRAND playing fields [Ed: FRAND is no friend of anyone but the lawyers who sponsor this site]

        Industry sources say the friction in Ericsson v Samsung illustrates a rising trend of unhealthy FRAND negotiation tactics

      • What the EU-UK trade agreement means for IP rights
        [Ed: There's no such thing as "IP" and the things they allude to are not rights. This also contains some UPC propaganda, as one might expect from litigation profiteers.]

        The expiration of the Brexit transition period does not affect the current patent system, which is governed by the European Patent Convention, a non-EU related international treaty. However, prior to Brexit, the UK government formally withdrew from the proposed new European unitary patent system because it refused to participate in the associated Unitary Patent Court (UPC), on the basis that participating “in a court that applies EU law and is bound by the CJEU would be inconsistent with the government’s aims of becoming an independent self-governing nation”.


        The TCA is completely silent on the protection of databases and so the UK will continue to offer protection to UK databases by applying the now national database right; a right based on the harmonised EU Database Right Directive.

        The new IP landscape in the UK and EU was determined by the Withdrawal Agreement some time before the TCA was reached. Rights holders should take steps now to check that their cloned rights appear correctly on the UK register, or to opt-out of the cloning process if they wish. Rights holders should ask themselves whether they still need both EU and comparable UK trade mark or design protection and, if they are a predominantly UK based business, whether they have plans in place to ensure adequate use of EU trade marks in the EU. EU trade mark applicants must also make a fresh application for a UK national mark by the September 2021 deadline.

      • In-house: new university patent pool will ease licensing efforts [Ed: How to pollute and destroy universities with their (originally) scientific/scholarly/research agenda, turning them into greenhouses for patent trolls, robber barons, and plutocracy]

        Sources from Columbia University, Nantero and Viziv Technologies reflect on whether the University Technology Licensing Program will make licencing easier

      • Patents

        • Munich court challenges German practice in PI proceedings

          The referral regarding PI proceedings arises from a patent dispute between patent holder Phoenix Contact and Harting over EP 28 23 536. EP 536 protects a plug connector comprising a protective conductor bridge (case ID: 21 O 16782/20).

          The current case forms part of a larger complex of proceedings concerning various patents and utility models relating to this technology. An opposing party filed an opposition at the European Patent Office against EP 536, which the office only granted in December 2020. However, the EPO had not yet reached a decision. Furthermore, no revocation claim is pending at the Federal Patent Court.

          Phoenix Contact applied to the Munich Regional Court for a preliminary injunction. This would ban Harting from distributing its connectors. According to the patent holder, the company is infringing EP 536. The court followed Phoenix’s argument, declaring the patent infringed.


          However, the Düsseldorf patent judges continue to issue PIs in exceptional cases. Namely, if the judges consider the patent-in-suit to be valid. Nevertheless, patent owners are currently referring to Hamburg as the patent court for a PI. According to patent experts, the court applies a lower standard to PIs than Munich, Mannheim and Düsseldorf.

          The court did not doubt the validity of the patent. However, the judges do not regard themselves as being in a position to grant a preliminary injunction This is because of the case law at the Higher Regional Court Munich.

        • Monoclonal antibody biosimilars pose unique IP challenges [Ed: These people and this site are insane; they push for patents on nature and lie on behalf of overzealous law firms, without understanding what's at stake or asking the public for its stance on such matters]

          In-house sources from the biosimilar industry explain why ‘low inventive step’ and process patents keep new monoclonal antibodies off the market

        • Software Patents

          • $2,500 for Peoplechart Prior Art

            On January 20, 2021, Unified Patents added a new PATROLL contest, with a $2,500 cash prize, seeking prior art on at least claim 1 of U.S. Patent 8,869,249. This patent is owed by Peoplechart Corporation, an NPE. The ’249 patent generally relates to protecting personal information using user authentication methods related to mobile banking. The patent is currently be asserted against Wintrust Bank for their use of a mobile banking application.

      • Trademarks

        • SCOTUS Refuses To Hear Case Between Jack Daniels And VIP Products Over Doggy Chew Toy

          The trademark dispute between Jack Daniels, famed maker of brown liquor, and VIP Products, maker of less famous doggy chew toy Bad Spaniels, has been a long and winding road. If you aren’t familiar with the case, the timeline goes like this. VIP made a dog toy that is a clear parody homage to a bottle of Jack Daniels whiskey, called Bad Spaniels (get it?). Jack Daniels sent a C&D letter to VIP, claiming trademark infringement. VIP turned around and sued Jack Daniels for declaratory judgement that its product did not infringe, leading Jack Daniels to then file its own trademark lawsuit in response. The initial court ruling found for Jack Daniels, rather bizarrely claiming that VIP’s product couldn’t be expressive work, thereby protected by the First Amendment, because it wasn’t a form of traditional entertainment. On appeal, however, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit said that ruling was made in error, vacated it, and instructed the lower court to apply the Rogers test since the product was clear parody and expressive after all. Rather than have that fight, though, Jack Daniels instead petitioned the Supreme Court to hear its case.

      • Copyrights

        • The Muppet Great Gatsby exists — in script form

          Our desperate plea for a Muppets adaptation of The Great Gatsby has been answered: documentary filmmaker Ben Crew has taken the public domain novel and turned it into a downloadable 104-page fan-made script that marries Muppet antics with existential angst. My request for an adaptation may have been ridiculous, but this script seriously vindicates me.

        • Book review: Copyright and Fundamental Rights in the Digital Age – The IPKat

          Copyright and Fundamental Rights in the Digital Age: A Comparative Analysis in Search of a Common Constitutional Ground, edited by Oreste Pollicino, Giovanni Maria Riccio and Marco Bassini, explores the relationship between copyright and fundamental rights in light of the digital single market strategy. It argues that the battle between copyright and copyright and freedom of expression is far from settled. In the introduction, by Oreste Pollicino, Giovanni Maria Riccio and Marco Bassini, it is recognised that whilst the internet offers new channels and opportunities for circulation of copyright, it nevertheless brings new threats for rightsholders. Furthermore, they state that it is no coincidence that the provisions on internet service provider liability are regarded as free speech rules. Within that context, the book sets out to revisit a critical understanding of some of the underlying legal issues in the relationship between copyright and other freedoms, through a comparative and European perspective.

        • MPA Takes Down NYAA GitHub Repository But Copies Swiftly Appear

          GitHub has removed a repository that included the source code of the popular BitTorrent tracker site NYAA.si. The developer platform responded to a DMCA takedown request from the Motion Picture Association, which argues that the code allowed anyone to host a clone of the ‘blatantly infringing’ website. Meanwhile, copies of the repository are starting to pop up elsewhere on GitHub.

        • ‘Copyright Troll’ Law Firm & Partner Charged With Fraud Over Piracy Settlements

          After accusing thousands of Danes of illegally sharing movies using BitTorrent, Danish law firm Njord Law approached many for cash settlements despite their clients not holding the copyrights to the content in question. A partner in the firm and the firm itself have now been charged with serious fraud offenses dating back to April 2017.


Links 21/1/2021: Google Tightens the Screws on Chromium, VideoLAN VLC 3.0.12

Posted in News Roundup at 9:31 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • My 10-year-old HP Pavilion doesn’t boot modern distros anymore

        I like round-number milestones. Especially if they allow one to showcase nice things. For example, sometime ago, I managed to revitalize my fairly ancient LG laptop by installing MX Linux on it. This restored a great deal of speed and nimbleness to the system, allowing it to remain modern and relevant for a bit longer.

        Now that my HP machine has reached its double-digit age, I thought of upgrading its Linux system. At the moment, the machine dual-boots Windows 7 (indeed, relax) and Kubuntu 20.04. Things work reasonably well. Spec-wise, the 2010 laptop comes with a first-gen i5 processor, 4 GB of RAM, 7,200rpm hard disk, and Nvidia graphics. Technically, not bad at all, even today. Well, I decided to try some modern distro flavors, to see what gives.


        Trawling through the online forums, I’ve found a few other mentions of similar problems. Of course, almost every legacy system issue is rather unique, so I can’t draw any concrete conclusions here. But it does feel like Linux is leaving old stuff behind. ‘Tis a paradox really. On one hand, Linux is well-known for being able to run (and pride itself for being able to do so) on ancient, low-end hardware. On the other hand, providing and maintaining support for an infinite amount of ancient systems is difficult.

        And if you do recall my older content, I had a somewhat similar problem on my T42 laptop. Back when it had its tenth birthday, I booted it up after a long pause, and tried using Linux on it yet again. And I had problems finding Linux drivers for its ATI card – Windows drivers were easily and readily available. The problems aren’t identical, but they are definitely indicative. Oh well. I may continue testing and playing with the old HP Pavilion, but I might not be able to really show you how well it carries into modern age. Hopefully, you found something useful in this wee sad article.

    • Server

      • ZimaBoard is a hackable single-board server with Intel Apollo Lake (crowdfunding)

        Folks have been using inexpensive single-board computers like the Raspberry Pi to create DIY home servers for about as long as inexpensive SBCs have been a thing. But the ZimaBoard is one of the first I’ve seen that’s custom made to be used as a DIY, hackable server.

        The ZimaBoard is a small, fanless computer powered by a 6-watt Intel Apollo Lake processor with support for hard drives and SSDs.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • Adding Your Cringe Stickers To Matrix

        Unlike discord, Matrix doesn’t make you pay to use your own custom emotes or stickers, you just need to go and host them yourself. Luckily doing so is surprisignly [sic] easy and can be done for free.

      • FLOSS Weekly 613: EteSync and Etebase – Tom Hacohen, EteSync and Etebase

        Etebase is a set of client libraries and a server for building end-to-end encrypted applications. Tom Hacohen, who previously appeared on FLOSS Weekly episode 524 to talk about securely syncing contacts, calendars, tasks and notes with his product EteSync, is back to talk about his new baby: Etebase. This is a great discussion as more and more consumers and users are interested in encryption and securing their private information across all platforms they use today.

    • Kernel Space

      • Linux on the Apple M1 takes another step closer with Ubuntu working thanks to Corellium

        ARM virtualization company Corellium has managed to get Ubuntu Linux running on the next-generation Apple M1.

        The news comes from Corellium CEO, Chris Wade, who mentioned on Twitter how “Linux is now completely usable on the Mac mini M1. Booting from USB a full Ubuntu desktop (rpi). Network works via a USB c dongle. Update includes support for USB, I2C, DART. We will push changes to our GitHub and a tutorial later today.”.

        Impressive speedy work, and a separate project to the recently revealed Asahi Linux which is also aiming to do the same thing. Two heads are better than one, as they say. The Corellium team mentioned on Twitter they full back the Asahi project too, so it’s wonderful to see true cooperation.

        Right now this effort doesn’t appear to have full GPU acceleration so it’s doing software rendering, making it less suitable for a daily driver but work is ongoing towards that. Eventually everything will be in place, and it’s taking far less time than I personally expected to see it running on such brand new hardware from Apple.

      • Linux now ‘completely usable’ on M1 Mac mini

        The initial announcement came with a warning that the “very early” beta was for “advanced users only”, and that USB support and a more complete release was on the way.

        As Wade has now noted, users can now boot from USB to a full Ubuntu desktop.

      • Security researchers have ported Ubuntu Linux for Apple Silicon M1 hardware

        Corellium’s CTO Chris Wade on Wednesday tweeted two photos of Ubuntu’s Groovy Gorilla running on the Mac Mini M1, adding that it was “completely usable” after booting from a ‘live’ USB drive.

      • The Maple Tree, A Modern Data Structure for a Complex Problem

        The Linux Memory Management layer supports the very common technique of virtual memory. Linux splits blocks of virtual memory into areas specified by the c structure vm_area_struct. Each vm_area_struct contain information associated with mapped memory and are used to find the associated pages of memory which contain the actual information. Virtual memory areas (VMAs) could be the contents of a file on disk, the memory that contains the program, or even the memory the program uses during execution. Literally everything that is run on Linux uses vm_area_struct for memory mapping. This vital area of the kernel needs to be quick and avoid contention whenever possible.

      • Dbus-Broker 26 Released For High Performance D-Bus

        With the BUS1 in-kernel IPC not panning out and not seeing any major code work in nearly two years, the user-space based, D-Bus compatible DBus-Broker remains the performant and current option for those looking at something faster and more reliable than D-Bus itself.

      • Graphics Stack

        • Vulkan Wayland Compositors Are Nearing Reality – Phoronix

          One of the last pieces of the puzzle for supporting an entirely Vulkan-based Wayland compositor is coming together with a new extension that looks like it will be merged soon and there already being work pending against Sway/WLROOTS to make use of the Vulkan path.

          The VK_EXT_physical_device_drm extension to Vulkan has been in the works for a number of months and is for allowing the mapping of Vulkan physical devices and DRM nodes. VK_EXT_physical_device_drm allows for querying DRM properties for physical devices and in turn matching the with DRM nodes on Linux systems.

        • Mesa’s R600 Driver Nears Feature Complete NIR Support For Radeon HD 5000/6000 Series – Phoronix

          For those still making use of pre-GCN AMD graphics cards supported by the R600 Gallium3D driver (namely the Radeon HD 5000/6000 series), the open-source “R600g” Gallium3D driver now has nearly feature complete NIR support.

          Gert Wollny has been near single handedly working on NIR support for the R600g driver to make use of this modern graphics driver intermediate representation as an alternative to the long-standing Gallium3D TGSI IR.

    • Applications

      • Support for Istio 1.7 ends on February 19th, 2021

        According to Istio’s support policy, LTS releases like 1.7 are supported for three months after the next LTS release. Since 1.8 was released on November 19th, support for 1.7 will end on February 19th, 2021.

        At that point we will stop back-porting fixes for security issues and critical bugs to 1.7, so we encourage you to upgrade to the latest version of Istio (1.8.2). If you don’t do this you may put yourself in the position of having to do a major upgrade on a short timeframe to pick up a critical fix.

      • VLC 3.0.12 Vetinari – VideoLAN
      • VLC Media Player 3.0.12 Released with Apple Silicon Support

        The VideoLAN team announced the release of VLC 3.0.12 as the thirteenth version of the “Vetinari” branch.

        The new release features native support for Apple Silicon hardware, the M1 processor in new versions of the MacBook Air, MacBook Pro, and Mac mini.

      • Deskreen Makes Any Device With A Web Browser A Second Screen For Your Computer

        Deskreen is a new free and open source application that can be used to make any device (in the same WiFi / LAN network) with a web browser, a second screen for your computer. The tool runs on Linux, Windows and macOS.

        With Deskreen you can use a phone, tablet (no matter if they use Android, iOS, etc.), smart TV and any other device that has a screen and a web browser (without needing any plugins; it needs JavaScript to be enabled), as a second screen via WiFi or LAN.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • Essential Guide: How to Install Docker on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS (Beginners Guide)

        Docker is a combo of ‘platform as a service’ products and services which use OS virtualisation to provide software in packages called containers.

        Containers contain everything an app, tool or service needs to run, including all libraries, dependencies, and configuration files. Containers are also isolated from each other (and the underlying host system), but can communicate through pre-defined channels.

      • Demux, mux and cut MP4 in ffmpeg

        Sometimes video and audio needs to be separated into individual files (aka demuxed). This can be handy when some audio artifacts need to be removed (e.g. noise or buzz) from the audio track (aka stream). This can be done easily…

      • Oracle Linux 8: Containers made easy with short training videos

        Container technology provides a means for developers and system administrators to build and package applications together with libraries, binaries, and configuration files so they can run independently from the host operating system and kernel version. You can run the same container application, unchanged, on laptops, data center virtual machines, and on a cloud environment.

      • Fix for 2createpackages in woofQ

        WoofQ is the build system for EasyOS. It has scripts ’0setup’, ’1download’, ’2createpackages’ and ’3buildeasydistro’, that are run in that order. The script ’2createpackages’ splits each input package into _EXE, _DEV, _DOC and _NLS components.

        Recently, when compiling LibreOffice in EasyOS on the Pi4, the configure step reported that the system boost libraries cannot be used, as some header files were missing. So, I had to use the internal boost, which does make the final LibreOffice PET bigger than it could have been.

      • How to Install and Remove Packages in Arch Linux

        Want to install packages on Arch Linux but do not know how? A lot of people face this problem when they first migrate from Debian-based distributions to Arch. However, you can easily manage packages on your Arch-based system using package managers.

        Pacman is the default package manager that comes pre-installed in every Arch distribution. But still, there’s a need for other package managers as Pacman doesn’t support packages from the Arch User Repository.

      • How to Manage Systemd Services with Systemctl on Linux

        Systemd a standard process for managing start-up services in Linux operating systems. It is used for controlling which programs run when the Linux system boots up. It is a system manager and has become the new standard for Linux operating systems. Systemd allows you to create a custom systemd service to run and manage any process. In this tutorial, we will explain how to manage services with systemd on Linux.

      • How to install Synfig Studio on Linux Mint 20.1 – YouTube

        In this video, we are looking at how to install Synfig Studio on Linux Mint 20.1.

      • How to install Ubuntu Unity Remix 20.10 – YouTube

        In this video, I am going to show how to install Ubuntu Unity Remix 20.10.

      • How to Exclude a Directory While Finding Files in Linux

        In Linux, the find command is used to search for files or folders from the command line. It is a complex command and has a large number of options, arguments, and modes.

        The most common use of the find command is to search for files using either a regular expression or the complete filename(s) to be searched.

      • How to Copy Files with Specific File Extension Recursively

        In Linux, the command ‘cp‘, which standards for ‘Copy‘ is used to copy files and folders to another folder. It is available by default in Linux as part of the GNU Coreutils set of tools.

        The most basic use of the cp command is to specify the files to be copied as the arguments and to specify the target folder as the last argument.

      • How to Copy Large Number of Files in Linux

        We use the cp command in Linux to copy files and directories from one directory to another. It can be simply used to copy a few files or directories, or it can be used with the ‘-r’ argument (which stands for ‘recursive‘) to copy a directory and the whole directory tree structure underneath it.

      • What is /dev/null in Linux

        The ‘/dev‘ directory in Linux and Unix based systems contains files corresponding to devices attached to the system. For example, as seen in the screenshot below, the CD drive is accessed using ‘cdrom‘, DVD drive with ‘dvd‘, hard drives are accessed using ‘sda1‘, ‘sda2‘, etc.

        All these files communicate with the Linux system through the respective files in ‘/dev‘. The input/output processing of the devices takes place through these files. This is due to an important feature of the filesystem in Linux: everything is either a file or a directory.

      • What is ‘> /dev/null 2>&1’ in Linux

        /dev/null is a pseudo-device file in Linux, which is used to discard output coming from programs, especially the ones executed on the command line. This file behaves like a sink, i.e. a target file which can be written, however as soon as any stream of data is written to this file, it is immediately deleted.

        This is useful to get rid of the output that is not required by the user. Programs and processes can generate output logs of huge length, and it gets messy at times to analyze the log.

      • Learn the main Linux OS components

        Evolved from Unix, Linux provides users with a low-cost, secure way to manage their data center infrastructure. Due to its open source architecture, Linux can be tricky to learn and requires command-line interface knowledge as well as the expectation of inconsistent documentation.

        In short, Linux is an OS. But Linux has some features and licensing options that set it apart from Microsoft and Apple OSes. To understand what Linux can do, it helps to understand the different Linux OS components and associated lingo.

      • How to Redirect Output to /dev/null in Linux

        In Linux, programs are very commonly accessed using the command line and the output, as such, is displayed on the terminal screen. The output consists of two parts: STDOUT (Standard Output), which contains information logs and success messages, and STDERR (Standard Error), which contains error messages.

        Many times, the output contains a lot of information that is not relevant, and which unnecessarily utilizes system resources. In the case of complex automation scripts especially, where there are a lot of programs being run one after the other, the displayed log is huge.

      • How to Move Large Number of Files in Linux

        To move files from one directory to another, the ‘mv‘ command is used in Linux. This command is available in Linux by default and can be used to move files as well as directories.

      • How to Limit the Depth of Recursive File Listing in Linux

        In this article, you will learn how to list file directory structure and limit the depth of recursive file display in Linux.

      • How to Find Top Running Processes by Memory Usage

        We will use the top command-line tool, which is a task manager in Unix and Linux systems that shows all the details about running processes with memory usage.

      • How to Extract Email Addresses from Text File in Linux

        In this article, you will learn how to extract Email addresses from a text file in Linux, using the handy command-line tool Grep.

      • How to Change Your Linux Password

        You’ve heard it before: change your password regularly. That can sometimes seem like a pain, but fortunately, changing your Linux password is easy. Today we’ll show you how to change the current user’s password, other users’ passwords, and the superuser password with a few simple commands.

      • How To Generate Random Numbers in Unix

        It is very easy to generate random numbers in Unix. Easiest way is to use the variable $RANDOM.

        Every time if you echo $RANDOM, you would get a new number between 0 and 32767.

      • How To Find IP Address In Linux – OSTechNix

        This guide will walk you through the steps to check or find IP address in Linux using ip and hostname commands from command line interface.

      • How to Update Node.js to the Latest Version – LinuxBuz

        Node.js is an open-source and cross-platform JavaScript runtime environment used to run JavaScript code on the server-side. It is primarily used for non-blocking, event-driven servers, traditional web sites and back-end API services.

        You already know how to install Node.js and NPM using three different ways. If your application is running on the Node.js server then I would recommend updating Node.js version regularly to improve the security. There are several ways you can update your Node.js version in Linux system.

      • How to Uninstall Applications from Ubuntu [Beginner's Guide]

        Don’t use a certain application anymore? Remove it.

        In fact, removing programs is one of the easiest ways to free up disk space on Ubuntu and keep your system clean.

        In this beginner’s tutorial, I’ll show you various ways of uninstalling software from Ubuntu.

      • How to Install and Configure Apache Web Server on Debian 10

        Apache server is one of the most popular and open source web servers that is developed and maintained by Apache Software Foundation. Apache is by far the most commonly used Web Server application in Linux operating systems, but it can be used on nearly all OS platforms Windows, MAC OS, OS/2, etc. It enables the developers to publish their content over the internet

        In this article, we will explain how to install and configure the Apache webserver on Debian 10 OS.

      • How to Install Spotify on Linux Distributions

        Spotify is a free music streaming service that offers additional premium content at a minimal subscription fee. It’s a widely successful music service with several million users and millions of songs at your fingertips. With Spotify, you can listen to your favorite artists, the latest hits, exclusives, and new discoveries on the go. Spotify is available on Windows, macOS, Linux (Debian), along with Android, iOS, and Windows Phone smartphones and tablets.

        We will learn in this article how to install Spotify on the latest version of Ubuntu, Mint, and Fedora.

      • How to Install SOGo on Ubuntu 20.04 | LinuxHostSupport

        SOGo is a free and open-source collaborative software with a focus on simplicity and scalability. It provides an AJAX-based Web interface and supports multiple native clients through the use of standard protocols such as CalDAV, CardDAV, and GroupDAV, as well as Microsoft ActiveSync. It also offers address book management, calendaring, and Web-mail clients along with resource sharing and permission handling.

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install SOGo on an Ubuntu 20.04 based virtual private server.

      • How to Install LXD / LXC on Ubuntu – buildVirtual

        Learn how to install LXD on a Ubuntu Linux system, including how to install and initialise LXD manually, use –preseed and how to script the lxd install

      • How to install iTunes on Linux such as Ubuntu 20.04 LTS – Linux Shout

        iTunes for Linux systems doesn’t sound realistic because officially it is available only for Windows and macOS. However, using Wine on Ubuntu and other Linux, is absolutely possible just like any other native Linux application.

        Those who are using Apple devices can understand the value of the iTunes application on their systems. It let you not only listen to music available on your iPhone, PC, and other devices but also let access various other things such as Radio, iTunes Store, and more. Once logged in with Apple ID, in addition to managing, playing, and downloading music tracks, the iTunes app also enables direct access to the music streaming service of Apple Music.

      • How to set up tlog on Linux hosts for terminal logging | Enable Sysadmin

        Enhance your system security with tlog, a terminal logging utility.

      • How to update your server from Ubuntu 18.04 to Ubuntu 20.04 | LinuxCloudVPS Blog

        Upgrading your Ubuntu version from one version to the latest version is one of the best features of Ubuntu. It is always recommended to upgrade your current Ubuntu version regularly in order to benefits from the latest security patches. You will get several benefit including, the latest software, new security patches and upgraded technology with a new version.

        As of now, Ubuntu 20.04 LTS is the latest Ubuntu version and you will keep getting updates and support till April 2025.

        Before starting any upgrade process, it is a good idea to backup any important files, system settings, and critical content for precaution. Also remember, you cannot downgrade it. You cannot go back to Ubuntu 18.04 without reinstalling it.

      • How to use whiptail to create more user-friendly interactive scripts | Enable Sysadmin

        Do you script in bash? If so, you can provide your users with a more robust and simple TUI for entering information into scripts.

      • Install Krita 4.4.2 In Ubuntu / Linux Mint | Tips On UNIX

        Krita is a free and open-source painting tool for artists and also known as a Photoshop alternative software, Krita has been in development for 10+ years and recently it came to life and having a good response now.

        This tutorial will be helpful for beginners to install Krita 4.4.2 in Ubuntu 20.10, Ubuntu 20.04, Ubuntu 18.04 and Linux Mint 20.1, and older versions.

        The latest version of Krita is 4.4.2 and announced with over 300 changes with new features also.

      • Install VLC 3.0.12 In Ubuntu / LinuxMint / OpenSUSE | Tips On UNIX

        This tutorial will be helpful for beginners to install VLC in Ubuntu 20.04, Ubuntu 20.10, Ubuntu 18.04 and LinuxMint 20.1.

        VLC is a free and open-source cross-platform multimedia player and it is one of the best media player for Linux used by millions of peoples to play multimedia files such as DVD, VCD, MP4, MKV, Mp3, and various formats.

        VLC released the thirteenth version of “Vetinari” branch 3.0.12.

    • Wine or Emulation

      • To get a major boost, running Windows apps on Linux is what comes next

        The v6 has been recently released with all major improvements needed. And named Wine, the popular layer of compatibility for running Windows apps on Linux. Undoubtedly, this going to be the first major release by the project in this year 2021. And all happen with following Wine’s schedule of making one major release every year with improvements and fresh updates.

        Wine can’t be listed among emulators as what the previous version is said as. It is a compatibility layer designed to allow games and apps to run on non-native environments like Linux, and originally was for only Microsoft.

        All Linux users with Wine will be allowed to easily access more than 27000 Windows apps and games on Linux. This apps also includes popular ones such as Adobe Photoshop and Microsoft Office. After year’s worth of development that saw over around 8300 changes this Wine 6.0 came up. And all these is been shared by Alexandre Julliard the person who created this in the release announcement.

    • Games

      • Valve have multiple games in development they will announce says Gabe Newell

        Gabe Newell of Valve Software (Steam) recently spoke to 1 NEWS in New Zealand about everything that has been going on and teased a few fun details. For those who didn’t know, Newell has been staying in New Zealand since early 2020 and decided to stay after a holiday when COVID-19 got much worse.

        Newell continues to talk very highly of New Zealand, even somewhat jokingly mentioning that some Valve staffers appear to strongly want to move their work over there now too. Newell mentioned why there’s no reason other game companies couldn’t move to New Zealand, and joked how they’re a producer of “not-stupidium” seemingly referring to how well New Zealand has dealt with COVID-19.


        Nice to see they continue to keep Linux in their sights for games too with all their recent games (Artifact, Underlords and Half-Life: Alyx) all having Linux builds, although Alyx is not directly mentioned on the store page for Linux it is available.

      • Vietnam joins Civilization VI in the next DLC for the New Frontier Pass on January 28

        Firaxis has confirmed the next DLC that forms part of the New Frontier Pass for Civilization VI will be releasing on January 28. Here’s some highlights of what’s to come.

        While the full details are yet to be released, Firaxis did a developer update video to tease some of it. There’s going to be a new civilization with Vietnam joining the world, two new leaders for existing civilizations (China and Mongolia), a new “Monopolies and Corporations” game mode with expanded economic options which sounds really quite interesting.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • Nasah Kuma: My Journey to GJS’ Backtrace “full” Option

          My outreachy internship has definitely taught me a lot of things including writing blog posts, reporting tasks, expressing myself and of course improving as a developer. When we developed a project timeline before submitting the final application weeks back, my mentor and I underestimated some of the issues because there were some hidden difficulties we only found out later.

          Initially, my timeline was set to using the first week to understand the inner workings of the debugger, using week 2-4 on the backtrace full command, using week 5-7 to display the current line of the source code when displaying the current frame in the debugger and the task for week 8-13 were still to be decided upon by my mentor and I within the course of the internship.

        • Sergio Villar Senin: Flexbox Cats (a.k.a fixing images in flexbox)

          In my previous post I discussed my most recent contributions to flexbox code in WebKit mainly targeted at reducing the number of interoperability issues among the most popular browsers. The ultimate goal was of course to make the life of web developers easier. It got quite some attention (I loved Alan Stearns’ description of the post) so I decided to write another one, this time focused in the changes I recently landed in WebKit (Safari’s engine) to improve the handling of elements with aspect ratio inside flexbox, a.k.a make images work inside flexbox. Some of them have been already released in the Safari 118 Tech Preview so it’s now possible to help test them and provide early feedback.

        • GNOME Software Jailbreak

          As many users have noticed, you cannot install all the software you want on your computer via gnome-software. This restriction has been imposed by the developers…

    • Distributions

      • The Linux Setup – Leah Neukirchen, Void Linux

        I found Leah through a fascinating tweet where she charted out her IRC activity over the past 10 years. Leah’s setup is just as interesting, mostly in that there’s no desktop environment. Leah also helps maintain Void Linux, which is a rolling release built from scratch. It’s a little too hardcore for me, but it seems pretty beloved on Reddit. So this setup is technical and intense, but also a lot of fun.

      • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandriva/OpenMandriva Family

        • Flashpeak Slimjet browser updated to » PCLinuxOS

          Slimjet is built on top of the Chromium open-source project on which Google Chrome is also based. It enjoys the same speed and reliablity provided by the underlying blink engine as Google Chrome. However, many additional features and options have been added in Slimjet to make it more powerful, intelligent and customizable than Chrome. In addition to that, Slimjet DOES NOT send any usage statistics back to Google’s server like Google Chrome, which is a growing concern for many Chrome users due to the ubiquitous presence and reach of the advertising empire.

      • SUSE/OpenSUSE

        • Accessing the Public Cloud Update Infrastructure via a Proxy

          SUSE provides public cloud customers with PAYG (Pay-As-You-Go) images on AWS, Azure, and GCP. Instances created from these images connect to a managed update infrastructure. So if you need to update your instances with the latest software updates or install that needed package using zypper, usually you can be assured that the underlying repositories are there with no further hassles. There are exceptions, though. Instances configured to utilize a proxy server or traverse firewalls, NAT gateways, proxies, security rules, Zscalar, or other security and network devices may run into problems. The purpose of this post is to address some of the more commonly occurring configuration issues seen with public cloud environments.

        • How SUSE builds its Enterprise Linux distribution – PART 5 | SUSE Communities

          This is the fifth blog of a series that provides insight into SUSE Linux Enterprise product development. You will get a first-hand overview of SUSE, the SLE products, what the engineering team does to tackle the challenges coming from the increasing pace of open source projects, and the new requirements from our customers, partners and business-related constraints.


          Based on our joint schedule, openSUSE Leap and SLE have a predictable release time frame: a release every 12 months and a 6 months support overlap for the former and new release, thus when the time is ready a snapshot of openSUSE Tumbleweed is made and both openSUSE and SLE will use this snapshot to create our next distributions versions.
          With this picture, we are not talking about our distribution per se yet, it’s only a pool of packages sources that we will use to build our respective distribution. But before going into how it’s built, note that it’s a simplified view because of course, there is always some back and forth between for instance openSUSE Leap/SLE and openSUSE Tumbleweed; it’s not just a one-way sync because during the development phase of our distributions, bugs are found and of course fixes are submitted back to Factory so openSUSE Tumbleweed also receives fixes from the process. For the sake of simplifying the picture we did not add these contributions as arrows.
          Also at SUSE, Open source is in our genes so we have always contributed to openSUSE but, since 2017, our SUSE Release Team had enforce a rule called “Factory First Policy“, which force code submissions for SLE to be pushed to Factory first before it lands in SLE. This is a continuation of the “Upstream First” principle on the distribution level. It reduces maintenance effort and leverages the community.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • Red Hat Seeks to Soothe CentOS Linux Users

          Red Hat rolled out updates to its CentOS Stream platform targeted at alleviating support issues tied to the new Linux platform that is set to supersede its long-standing CentOS Linux project.

          The CentOS Stream platform will include “no- and low-cost” programs that will allow individual Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) subscriptions to run on up to 16 systems in a production environment. This includes the ability to run these RHEL systems on major public cloud environments like Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud Platform (GCP). This option will be available by Feb. 1, 2021.

          Red Hat is now also making it possible to add development teams to its Red Hat Developer program by using a team member’s existing RHEL subscription. This will allow RHEL to be deployed using Red Hat’s Cloud Access program on top of those major cloud providers.

        • Red Hat Launches New RHEL Programs

          Red Hat has announced two new programs for RHEL: no-cost RHEL for small production workloads and no-cost RHEL for customer development teams.

          The terms of the no-cost RHEL program formerly limited its use to single-machine developers. Red Hat has now expanded the terms of the program so that the Individual Developer subscription for RHEL can be used in production for up to 16 systems.

        • New Year, new Red Hat Enterprise Linux programs: Easier ways to access RHEL

          On December 8, 2020, Red Hat announced a major change to the enterprise Linux ecosystem: Red Hat will begin shifting our work from CentOS Linux to CentOS Stream on December 31, 2021. We and the CentOS Project governing board believe that CentOS Stream represents the best way to further drive Linux innovation. It will give everyone in the broader ecosystem community, including open source developers, hardware and software creators, individual contributors, and systems administrators, a closer connection to the development of the world’s leading enterprise Linux platform.

          When we announced our intent to transition to CentOS Stream, we did so with a plan to create new programs to address use cases traditionally served by CentOS Linux. Since then, we have gathered feedback from the broad, diverse, and vocal CentOS Linux user base and the CentOS Project community. Some had specific technical questions about deployment needs and components, while others wondered what their options were for already- or soon-to-be deployed systems. We’ve been listening. We know that CentOS Linux was fulfilling a wide variety of important roles.

          We made this change because we felt that the Linux development models of the past 10+ years needed to keep pace with the evolving IT world. We recognize the disruption that this has caused for some of you. Making hard choices for the future isn’t new to Red Hat. The introduction of Red Hat Enterprise Linux and the deprecation of Red Hat Linux two decades ago caused similar reactions. Just as in the past, we’re committed to making the RHEL ecosystem work for as broad a community as we can, whether it’s individuals or organizations seeking to run a stable Linux backend; community projects maintaining large CI/Build systems; open source developers looking toward “what’s next;” educational institutions, hardware, and software vendors looking to bundle solutions; or enterprises needing a rock-solid production platform.

        • Install RHEL 8.3 for free production use in a VM

          In January 2021, Red Hat announced that Red Hat Enterprise Linux can be used at no cost for up to 16 production servers. In this article, I want to provide step-by-step instructions on how to install RHEL 8.3 in a VM.

          First off, download the official and updated QCOW2 image named rhel-8.3-x86_64-kvm.qcow2 (the name will likely change later as RHEL moves to higher versions). Creating an account on the Red Hat Portal is free, there is an integration with 3rd party authorization services like GitHub, Twitter or Facebook, however for successful host registration username and password needs to be created.

          To use RHEL in a cloud environment like Amazon, Azure or OpenStack, simply upload the image and start it. It’s cloud-init ready, make sure to seed the instance with data like usernames, passwords and/or ssh-keys. Note that root account is locked, there is no way to log in without seeding initial information.

        • CentOS Is Gone — But RHEL Is Now Free For Up To 16 Production Servers
        • Rocky Linux Making Progress Towards Their First Release In Q2 As A Free RHEL Alternative

          If Red Hat’s new no-cost offering for up to 16 production systems for RHEL doesn’t fit your requirements and are evaluating alternatives to CentOS 8 that will be EOL’ed this year, Rocky Linux remains one of the leading contenders and is on track for its inaugural release in Q2 of this year.

          Rocky Linux and CloudLinux’s AlmaLinux appear to be the two main contenders (along with existing players like Oracle Linux) coming out of last month’s announcement that CentOS 8 will be EOL’ed at the end of 2021.

        • Madeline Peck: January Blog Post (New Year New Bloggin!)

          Today I actually also attended the super low key design team video chat, which involved a brain storm session for Fedora 35 that was exciting!

      • Debian Family

        • Bug#971515: marked as done (kubernetes: excessive vendoring (private libraries))
          This means that you claim that the problem has been dealt with.
          If this is not the case it is now your responsibility to reopen the
          Bug report if necessary, and/or fix the problem forthwith.
          (NB: If you are a system administrator and have no idea what this
          message is talking about, this may indicate a serious mail system
          misconfiguration somewhere. Please contact owner@bugs.debian.org
        • The Debian tech committee allows Kubernetes vendoring

          Back in October, LWN looked at a conversation within the Debian project regarding whether it was permissible to ship Kubernetes bundled with some 200 dependencies. The Debian technical committee has finally come to a conclusion on this matter: this bundling is acceptable and the maintainer will not be required to make changes

        • Kentaro Hayashi: fabre.debian.net is sponsored by FOSSHOST

          Today, we are pleased to announce that fabre.debian.net has migrated to FOSSHOST

          FOSSHOST provides us a VPS instance which is located at OSU Open Source Lab. It improves a lack of enough server resources then service availability especially.

        • Freexian’s report about Debian Long Term Support, December 2020

          A Debian LTS logo Like each month, have a look at the work funded by Freexian’s Debian LTS offering.

          Debian project funding

          In December, we put aside 2100 EUR to fund Debian projects. The first project proposal (a tracker.debian.org improvement for the security team) was received and quickly approved by the paid contributors, then we opened a request for bids and the bid winner was announced today (it was easy, we had only one candidate). Hopefully this first project will be completed until our next report.

          We’re looking forward to receive more projects from various Debian teams! Learn more about the rationale behind this initiative in this article.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Linux Mint 20.1 is a desktop anyone can love

          I’m glad Linux Mint exists. That’s a strange statement, coming from someone who has never opted to make it their default desktop distribution. I’ve never been a fan of Cinnamon or Mate, and I’ve always thought Xfce was a solid desktop, but just not for me.

          Even though I’m not terribly keen on the offered desktops for Linux Mint, I still believe it to be a fantastic distribution. Why is that? One reason is that it’s most ardent fans are almost Apple-like in their fanaticism. From my perspective, that’s a good thing. Linux has long needed a desktop distribution which elicited that much excitement from the user base. Once upon a time, that title would have been bestowed upon Ubuntu. Alas, a few bad choices along the way and the rabid fanbase isn’t quite so rabid.

    • Devices/Embedded

      • Renesas adds to RZ/G2 line with three Cortex-A55 SoCs

        Renesas unveiled three low-end “RZ/G2L” members of its RZ/G2 family of Linux-driven IoT SoCs with single or dual -A55 cores plus a Mali-G31, Cortex-M33, and up to dual GbE support. There is also a SMARC module and dev kit.

        Renesas’ RZ/G2 line of industrial-focused system-on-chips include the hexa-core RZ/GM and octa-core RZ-G2H, both with mixtures of Cortex-A57 and -A53 cores and 4K support, as well as two dual-core models: a Cortex-A53 based RZ/G2E with HD video and a Cortex-A57-equipped RZ/G2N with 4K. Instead of filling in the middle of the Linux-focused product line with some quad-core models, the Japanese chipmaker has instead come back with three new low-end models, featuring single or dual-core Cortex-A55 cores.

      • Renesas RZ/G2L MPUs Feature Cortex-A55 & Cortex-M33 Cores for AI Applications

        Renesas Electronics Corporation announced RZ/G2L MPUs, allowing enhanced processing for an extensive variety of AI applications. The RZ/G2L group of 64-bit MPUs includes three new MPU models featuring Arm Cortex-A55, and an optional Cortex-M33 core. These are RZ/G2L, RZ/G2LC, and RZ/G2UL MPUs. The Cortex-A55 CPU core typically delivers approximately 20 percent improved processing performance compared with the previous Cortex-A53 core, and according to Renesas, is around six times faster in “essential processing for AI applications”.

      • Fanless embedded PC supports industrial GRE Tiger Lake CPUs

        Avalue’s fanless, rugged “EMS-TGL” embedded PC runs Linux or Win 10 on embedded versions of Intel’s 11th Gen ULP3 Core CPUs with up to 64GB DDR4-3200, 3x M.2, 1GbE and 2.5GbE ports, and optional “IET” expansion.

        Avalue, which recently launched a pair of NUC-APL mini-PCs based on Intel’s Apollo Lake, announced a larger, but similarly fanless embedded computer with Intel’s 10nm, 11th Gen “Tiger Lake” ULP3 processors. The rugged EMS-TGL runs Linux and Win 10 and supports applications including digital signage, smart retail, and computer vision.

      • If LG stops making smartphones, who will push the boundaries with weird devices like the LG Wing and LG Rollable? – Liliputing

        Meanwhile, folks who are still interested in weird phones might have to look to smaller companies like F(x)Tec, Planet Computers, Pine64, and Purism, which have developed phones with features like built-in keyboards, support for GNU/Linux distributions and other free and open source operating systems, and physical kill switches for wireless, mic, and camera functions, among other things.

      • MicroMod modular ecosystem offers M.2 microcontrollers cards and carrier boards

        MicroMod is a modular interface ecosystem for quick embedded development and prototyping. MicroMod comes with two components, that is a microcontroller “processor board” and a carrier board. PC industry’s M.2 connector is the interface between these two components. The carrier boards are for the usage of various peripherals and the processor board act as the brain of the application system.

      • Odroid Go Goes Super – Boiling Steam

        Odroid continues to move beyond the simple realm of Single Board Computers (SBCs) to become and more and more credible player as a portable consoles manufacturer. After introducing the Odroid Go and the Odroid Go Advance (that both cow_killer and I reviewed), they have announced at the end of December 2020 that they were going to release yet another version, the Odroid Go Super.

      • Use Raspberry PI as FM Radio transmitter – peppe8o

        As usual, I suggest adding from now to your favourite ecommerce shopping chart all needed hardware, so that at the end you will be able to evaluate overall costs and decide if continuing with the project or removing them from shopping chart. So, hardware will be only:

        - Raspberry PI Zero W (including proper power supply or using a smartphone micro usb charger with at least 3A) or newer Raspberry PI Board

      • Open Hardware/Modding

        • Arduino Blog » Homemade machine puts a new spin on winding yarn

          If you’ve ever wanted to wind balls of yarn, then look no further than this automated machine from Mr Innovative. The YouTuber’s DIY device is powered by an Arduino Nano and an A4988 stepper driver, spinning up a round conglomeration of yarn via a NEMA17 motor and a timing belt.

          The ball is wound on an offset spindle, which is mechanically controlled to pitch back and forth and spin itself as the overall assembly rotates, producing an interesting geometric pattern.

        • Little Bee is an affordable, open hardware current & magnetic field probe (Crowdfunding)

          Little Bee is an affordable, open-source hardware, and high-performance current probe and magnetic field probe designed to debug and analyze electronic devices at a much lower cost than existing solutions such as Migsic CP2100B or I-prober 520. This type of tool is especially important for power electronics, which has become ever more important with electric vehicles, alternative energy solutions, and high-efficiency power supplies.

        • Arduino Blog » James Bruton demonstrates the Coanda effect with an Arduino-controlled rig

          The Coanda effect, as you may or may not know, is what causes flowing air to follow a convex surface. In his latest video, James Bruton shows how the concept can used as a sort of inverted ping pong ball waterfall or staircase.

          His 3D-printed rig pushes balls up from one fan stage to another, employing curved ducts to guide the lightweight orbs on their journey.

          The fan speeds are regulated with an Arduino Uno and motor driver, and the Arduino also dictates how fast a feeder mechanism inputs balls via a second driver module. While the setup doesn’t work every time, it’s still an interesting demonstration of this natural phenomenon, and could likely be perfected with a bit more tinkering.

      • Mobile Systems/Mobile Applications

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Open Sesame: How Open Source technologies turbocharge enterprises

        Open source, a revolutionary idea for ICT innovations, also makes sense for business. The key is its adoption to an organisation’s culture and budget
        If one were to make an internet search for the very active Information Technology and Communication (ICT) areas of innovation, the usual suspects likely to show up are intelligent machines like Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), and Deep Learning (DL); human-machine interactions like bots, augmented realities, voice and gesture-enabled interfaces; ubiquitous computing like resilient cloud and quantum computing; and autonomous machines that include the like of drones and self-driving vehicles.

        Compared to the pace of development a couple of decades ago, today all these areas continue to develop at extremely high velocities. A deep dive into any of the technical areas will show up a common thread: open source.

      • Valetudo is a cloud-free web interface for robot vacuum cleaners

        Once you’ve done the update the Xiaomi app will not work anymore, and you’d only access the robot vacuum cleaner via its web interface which, in most cases, comes with the same features as the mobile app minus cloud connectivity. However, if you change your mind, you can simply factory reset the device to remove Valetudo and continue with the Xiaomi app, at least on Roborock models.

      • Well you look different: Apache CloudStack 4.15 lands with new UI, improved access control • DEVCLASS

        Apache CloudStack (CS), the Apache Software Foundation’s cloud infrastructure project, has pushed out new long term support version 4.15, providing users with a new UI, various VMware-related improvements and a way to define role based users in projects.

        The software was originally developed in 2008 at what soon became Cloud.com, a start-up that was bought by Citrix in 2011. The infrastructure as a service platform was accepted into the Apache Incubator in 2012 and graduated its process in 2013. Customers include Verizon, TomTom, SAP, Huawei, Disney, Cloudera, BT, Autodesk, and Apple.

      • Daniel Stenberg: bye bye svn.haxx.se

        When the Subversion project started in the early year 2000, I was there. I joined the project and participated in the early days of its development as I really believed in creating an “improved CVS” and I thought I could contribute to it.

        While I was involved with the project, I noticed the lack of a decent mailing list archive for the discussions and set one up under the name svn.haxx.se as a service for myself and for the entire community. I had the server and the means to do it, so why not?

        After some years I drifted away from the project. It was doing excellently and I was never any significant contributor. Then git and some of the other distributed version control systems came along and in my mind they truly showed the world how version control should be done…

        The mailing list archive however I left, and I had even added more subversion related lists to it over time. It kept chugging along without me having to do much. Mails flew in, got archived and were made available for the world to search for and link to. Today it has over 390,000 emails archived from over twenty years of rather active open source development on multiple mailing lists. It is fascinating that no less than 46 persons have written more than a thousand emails each on those lists during these two decades.

      • Daniel Stenberg: everything.curl.dev

        The online version of the curl book “everything curl” has been moved to the address shown in the title:


        This, after I did a very unscientific and highly self-selective poll on twitter on January 18 2020…

      • Web Browsers

        • Brave Browser Adds Native Support for Decentralized IPFS Protocol

          Even though Brave browser was caught up in some controversies last year, it looks like they managed to become the first major web browser to add support for InterPlantetary File System (IPFS) protocol with the help of Protocol Labs.

          This support was introduced with v1.19.86 release.

          In case you didn’t know, IPFS is a peer to peer protocol that lets you store and share files. You can safely assume it as something similar to the BitTorrent protocol with some technical differences.

          Just because it is totally a decentralized system to store and share files, it can be quite effective to fight censorship by big tech and the government.

        • Chromium

          • Google muzzles all Chromium browsers on 15 March 2021

            What is the relevance I hear you ask.
            Well, I provide Chromium packages for Slackware, both 32bit and 64bit versions. These chromium packages are built on our native Slackware platform, as opposed to the official Google Chrome binaries which are compiled on an older Ubuntu probably, for maximum compatibility across Linux distros where these binaries are used. One unique quality of my Chromium packages for Slackware is that I provide them for 32bit Slackware. Google ceased providing official 32bit binaries long ago.

            In my Slackware Chromium builds, I disable some of the more intrusive Google features. An example: listening all the time to someone saying “OK Google” and sending the follow-up voice clip to Google Search.

            And I create a Chromium package which is actually usable enough that people prefer it over Google’s own Chrome binaries, The reason for this usefulness is the fact that I enable access to Google’s cloud sync platform through my personal so-called “Google API key“. In Chromium for Slackware, you can logon to your Google account, sync your preferences, bookmarks, history, passwords etc to and from your cloud storage on Google’s platform. Your Chromium browser on Slackware is able to use Google’s location services and offer localized content; it uses Google’s translation engine, etcetera. All that is possible because I formally requested and was granted access to these Google services through their APIs within the context of providing them through a Chromium package for Slackware.

            The API key, combined with my ID and passphrase that allow your Chromium browser to access all these Google services are embedded in the binary – they are added during compilation. They are my key, and they are distributed and used with written permission from the Chromium team.

            These API keys are usually meant to be used by software developers when testing their programs which they base on Chromium code. Every time a Chromium browser I compiled talks to Google through their Cloud Service APIs, a counter increases on my API key. Usage of the API keys for developers is rate-limited, which means if an API key is used too frequently, you hit a limit and you’ll get an error response instead of a search result. So I made a deal with the Google Chromium team to be recognized as a real product with real users and an increased API usage frequency. Because I get billed for every access to the APIs which exceeds my allotted quota and I am generous but not crazy.
            I know that several derivative distributions re-use my Chromium binary packages (without giving credit) and hence tax the usage quota on my Google Cloud account, but I cover this through donations, thank you my friends, and no thanks to the leeches of those distros.

        • Mozilla

          • Extensions in Firefox for Android Update

            Starting with Firefox 85, which will be released January 25, 2021, Firefox for Android users will be able to install supported Recommended Extensions directly from addons.mozilla.org (AMO). Previously, extensions for mobile devices could only be installed from the Add-ons Manager, which caused some confusion for people accustomed to the desktop installation flow. We hope this update provides a smoother installation experience for mobile users.

            As a quick note, we plan to enable the installation buttons on AMO during our regularly scheduled site update on Thursday, January 21. These buttons will only work if you are using a pre-release version of Firefox for Android until version 85 is released on Tuesday, January 25.

            This wraps up our initial plans to enable extension support for Firefox for Android. In the upcoming months, we’ll continue to work on optimizing add-on performance on mobile. As a reminder, you can use an override setting to install other extensions listed on AMO on Firefox for Android Nightly.

          • Extensions in Firefox for Android Update | Mozilla Add-ons Blog

            Starting with Firefox 85, which will be released January 25, 2021, Firefox for Android users will be able to install supported Recommended Extensions directly from addons.mozilla.org (AMO). Previously, extensions for mobile devices could only be installed from the Add-ons Manager, which caused some confusion for people accustomed to the desktop installation flow. We hope this update provides a smoother installation experience for mobile users.

            As a quick note, we plan to enable the installation buttons on AMO during our regularly scheduled site update on Thursday, January 21. These buttons will only work if you are using a pre-release version of Firefox for Android until version 85 is released on Tuesday, January 25.

          • Porting Firefox to Apple Silicon

            The release of Apple Silicon-based Macs at the end of last year generated a flurry of news coverage and some surprises at the machine’s performance. This post details some background information on the experience of porting Firefox to run natively on these CPUs.

            We’ll start with some background on the Mac transition and give an overview of Firefox internals that needed to know about the new architecture, before moving on to the concept of Universal Binaries.

            We’ll then explain how DRM/EME works on the new platform, talk about our experience with macOS Big Sur, and discuss various updater problems we had to deal with. We’ll conclude with the release and an overview of various other improvements that are in the pipeline.

      • FSF

        • GNU Projects

          • 17 Free Design Tools for 2021

            GIMP (GNU Image Manipulation Program) is a cross-platform tool for quality image creation and manipulation and advanced photo retouching. GIMP provides features to produce icons, graphical design elements, and art for user interface components and mockups. Price: Free.

          • Adding translations to Guix’ website

            As part of GNU, Guix aims to bring freedom to computer users all over the world, no matter the languages they (prefer to) speak. For example, Guix users asking for help can expect an answer even if they do so in languages other than English.

            We also offer translated software for people more comfortable with a language other than English. Thanks to many people who contribute translations, GNU Guix and the packages it distributes can be used in various languages, which we value greatly. We are happy to announce that Guix’ website can now be translated in the same manner. If you want to get a glimpse on how the translation process works, first from a translator’s, then from a programmer’s perspective, read on.

            The process for translators is kept simple. Like lots of other free software packages, Guix uses GNU Gettext for its translations, with which translatable strings are extracted from the source code to so-called PO files. If this is new to you, the magic behind the translation process is best understood by taking a look at one of them. Download a PO file for your language at the Fedora Weblate instance.

            Even though PO files are text files, changes should not be made with a text editor but with PO editing software. Weblate integrates PO editing functionality. Alternatively, translators can use any of various free-software tools for filling in translations, of which Poedit is one example, and (after logging in) upload the changed file. There also is a special PO editing mode for users of GNU Emacs. Over time translators find out what software they are happy with and what features they need.

            Help with translations is much appreciated. Since Guix integrates with the wider free software ecosystem, if you intend to become a translator, it is worth taking a look at the styleguides and the work of other translators. You will find some at your language’s team at the Translation Project (TP).

        • Licensing/Legal

          • Banon: License changes to Elasticsearch and Kibana

            Shay Banon first announced that Elastic would move its Apache 2.0-licensed source code in Elasticsearch and Kibana to be dual licensed under Server Side Public License (SSPL) and the Elastic License. “To be clear, our distributions starting with 7.11 will be provided only under the Elastic License, which does not have any copyleft aspects. If you are building Elasticsearch and/or Kibana from source, you may choose between SSPL and the Elastic License to govern your use of the source code.”

            In another post Banon added some clarification. “SSPL, a copyleft license based on GPL, aims to provide many of the freedoms of open source, though it is not an OSI approved license and is not considered open source.”

      • Programming/Development

        • What Is a Software Developer?

          Software developers are highly sought-after tech professionals, and the demand for their skills is continually increasing. In this Life in Tech article, we’ll provide a general look at the various duties and requirements associated with the role of software developer.

          Let’s start with a basic description before getting into the nuances and specifics. Briefly, then, software developers conceive, design, and build computer programs, says ComputerScience.org. To accomplish this, they identify user needs, write and test new software, and maintain and improve it as needed. Software developers occupy crucial roles in a variety of industries, including tech, entertainment, manufacturing, finance, and government.

        • Steinar H. Gunderson: How others program

          How do others program? I realized today that I’ve never actually seen it; in more than 30 years of coding, I’ve never really watched someone else write nontrivial code over a long period of time. I only see people’s finished patches—and I know that the patches I send out for review sure doesn’t look much like the code I initially wrote. (There are exceptions for small bugfixes and the likes, of course.)

        • Sensible integer scale for Gonum Plot

          Over the years, I found myself multiple times using Gonum Plot. I do find it as a very good and easy to use plotting tool for Go.

          The problem I found myself, over and over, dealing with is the tickers scale. If you know before-hand the values that can be expected to be created by the application, it is very straightforward, but the majority of times, this is not the case. I often find myself creating a plotting application on data that track events that have not yet happened and cannot predict their range.

          To solve the issue, I create a package that has a struct that implements the Ticker interface and provides tickers that are usually sensible. Since this struct only works for integer scales, I called it sit, which stands for “Sensible Int Ticks”.

        • Learn JavaScript by writing a guessing game | Opensource.com

          It’s pretty safe to say that most of the modern web would not exist without JavaScript. It’s one of the three standard web technologies (along with HTML and CSS) and allows anyone to create much of the interactive, dynamic content we have come to expect in our experiences with the World Wide Web. From frameworks like React to data visualization libraries like D3, it’s hard to imagine the web without it.

          There’s a lot to learn, and a great way to begin learning this popular language is by writing a simple application to become familiar with some concepts. Recently, some Opensource.com correspondents have written about how to learn their favorite language by writing a simple guessing game, so that’s a great place to start!

        • Getting your 3D ready for Qt 6

          As was previously discussed, since the 6.0.0 release of Qt, Qt 3D no longer ships as a pre-compiled module. If you need to use it on your projects, try out the new features, or just see your existing application is ready for the next chapter of Qt’s life, you need to compile Qt 3D from source.

          In order to do this, you can do it the traditional way ([cq]make …; make; make install) or use the Conan-based system that is being pioneered with the latest version of the MaintenanceTool.

        • Qt Open-Source Downloads Temporarily Offline Due To Severe Hardware Failure

          Several readers have expressed concerned that Qt open-source downloads have disappeared but The Qt Company has now commented it’s only a temporary issue due to a “severe hardware failure” in the cloud.

          Qt’s open-source online installer and offline packages are not currently working for the open-source options but the commercial downloads are working. While that may raise concerns given Qt’s increasing commercial focus, The Qt Company posted to their blog that this interruption around open-source package downloads is due to a reported major hardware problem at their cloud provider.

        • Efficient custom shapes in QtQuick with Rust

          Fortunally, the Qt API provides multiple ways to implement custom shapes, that depending on the needs might be enough.

          There is the Canvas API using the same API as the canvas API on the web but in QML. It’s easy to use but very slow and I wouldn’t recommend it.

          Instead of the Canvas API, from the QML side, there is the QtQuick Shapes module. This module allows creating more complex shapes directly from the QML with a straightforward declarative API. In many cases, this is good enough for the application developer but this module doesn’t offer a public C++ API.

          If you need more controls, using C++ will be required to implement custom QQuickItem. Unfortunately drawing on the GPU using QQuickItem is more complex than the QPainter API. You can’t just use commands like drawRect, but will need to convert all your shapes in triangles first. This involves a lot of maths like it can be seen in the example from the official documentation or from the KDAB tutorial (Efficient custom shapes in Qt Quick).

          A QPainer way is also available with QQuickPaintedItem, but it is slow because it renders your shape in a textured rectangle in the Scene Graph.

        • Perl/Raku

          • Roles, h’uh, what are they good for? | Jesse Shy

            What is a role? Put simply, roles are a form of code reuse. Often, the term shared behavior is used. Roles are said to be consumed and the methods ( including attribute accessors ) are flattened into the consuming class.

            One of the major benefits of roles is they attempt to solve the diamond problem encountered in multi-inheritance by requiring developers to resolve name collisions manually that arise in multi-inheritance. Don’t be fooled however, roles are a form of multi-inheritance.

            I often see roles being used in ways they shouldn’t be. Let’s look at the mis-use of roles, then see an example of shared behavior.

            I’m using that word inheritance a lot for a reason, one of the two ways I see roles most often misused is to hide an inheritance nightmare.

            “Look ma, no multi-inheritance support, no problem. I’ll just throw stuff in roles and glum them on wherever I really want to use inheritance. It all sounds fancy, but I am just lumping stuff into a class cause I don’t really understand OO principals.”

        • Python

          • Building your own Network Monitor with PyShark – Linux Hint

            Many tools for network analysis have existed for quite some time. Under Linux, for example, these are Wireshark, tcpdump, nload, iftop, iptraf, nethogs, bmon, tcptrack as well as speedometer and ettercap. For a detailed description of them, you may have a look at Silver Moon’s comparison [1].

            So, why not use an existing tool, and write your own one, instead? Reasons I see are a better understanding of TCP/IP network protocols, learning how to code properly, or implementing just the specific feature you need for your use case because the existing tools do not give you what you actually need. Furthermore, speed and load improvements to your application/system can also play a role that motivates you to move more in this direction.

            In the wild, there exist quite several Python libraries for network processing and analysis. For low-level programming, the socket library [2] is the key. High-level protocol-based libraries are httplib, ftplib, imaplib, and smtplib. In order to monitor network ports and the packet stream competitive candidates, are python-nmap [3], dpkt [4], and PyShark [5] are used. For both monitoring and changing the packet stream, the scapy library [6] is widely in use.

            In this article, we will have a look at the PyShark library and monitor which packages arrive at a specific network interface. As you will see below, working with PyShark is straightforward. The documentation on the project website will help you for the first steps — with it, you will achieve a usable result very quickly. However, when it comes to the nitty-gritty, more knowledge is necessary.

            PyShark can do a lot more than it seems at first sight, and unfortunately, at the time of this writing, the existing documentation does not cover that in full. This makes it unnecessarily difficult and provides a good reason to look deeper under the bonnet.

        • Shell/Bash/Zsh/Ksh

          • Spreadsheet annoyance no. 3: quotes have priority

            In an earlier post I complained about spreadsheet programs: Excel, LibreOffice Calc and Gnumeric. All of them confuse non-dates with dates, and automatically interpret certain number strings with 2 colons as [h]:mm:ss. Grrr.

        • Rust

          • Changes to the Rustdoc team

            Recently, there have been a lot of improvements in rustdoc. It was possible thanks to our new contributors. In light of these recent contributions, a few changes were made in the rustdoc team.

          • Rustdoc performance improvements

            @jyn514 noticed a while ago that most of the work in Rustdoc is duplicated: there are actually three different abstract syntax trees (ASTs)! One for doctree, one for clean, and one is the original HIR used by the compiler. Rustdoc was spending quite a lot of time converting between them. Most of the speed improvements have come from getting rid of parts of the AST altogether.

        • Java

          • Why and How to Use Optional in Java |

            The Optional object type in Java was introduced with version 8 of Java. It is used when we want to express that a value might not be known (yet) or it’s not applicable at this moment. Before Java 8 developers might have been tempted to return a null value in this case.

          • GraalVM 21.0 Released With Experimental JVM On Truffle – Phoronix

            Oracle on Tuesday released GraalVM 21.0 as the latest version of their Java VM/JDK that also supports other languages and modes of execution.

            One of the notable additions with GraalVM 21.0 is supporting Java on Truffle, as an example JVM implementation using the Truffle interpreter. GraalVM’s Truffle framework is an open-source library for writing programming language interpreters. With Java on Truffle, it’s of the same nature as the likes of JavaScript, Ruby, Python, and R within the GraalVM ecosystem. Java on Truffle allows for improved isolation from the host JVM, run Java bytecode in a separate context from the JVM, running in the context of a native image but with dynamically loaded bytecode allowed, and other Truffle framework features. More details about the Java on Truffle implementation via the GraalVM manual.

    • Standards/Consortia

      • Marcin ‘hrw’ Juszkiewicz: Standards are boring

        Standards are boring. Satisfied users may not want to migrate to other boards the market tries to sell them.

        So Arm market is flooded with piles of small board computers (SBC). Often they are compliant to standards only when it comes to connectors.

        But our hardware is not standard

        It is not a matter of ‘let produce UEFI ready hardware’ but rather ‘let write EDK2 firmware for boards we already have’.

        Look at Raspberry/Pi then. It is shitty hardware but got popular. And group of people wrote UEFI firmware for it. Probably without vendor support even.


        At the end you will have SBSA compliant hardware running SBBR compliant firmware.

        Congratulations, your board is SystemReady SR compliant. Your marketing team may write that you are on same list as Ampere with their Altra server.

        Users buy your hardware and can install whatever BSD, Linux distribution they want. Some will experiment with Microsoft Windows. Others may work on porting Haiku or other exotic operating system.

        But none of them will have to think “how to get this shit running”. And they will tell friends that your device is as boring as it should be when it comes to running OS on it == more sales.

  • Leftovers

    • Why keeping a journal improves productivity

      In previous years, this annual series covered individual apps. This year, we are looking at all-in-one solutions in addition to strategies to help in 2021. Welcome to day 10 of 21 Days of Productivity in 2021.

      When I was in primary school in the days before the commercial internet, teachers would often give my class an assignment to keep a journal. Sometimes it was targeted at something particular, like a specifically formatted list of bugs and descriptions or a weekly news article summary for a civics class.

    • Health/Nutrition

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • I looked at all the ways Microsoft Teams tracks users and my head is spinning

          Microsoft Teams isn’t just there to make employees’ lives easier. It’s also there to give bosses data about so many things.

        • Pseudo-Open Source

          • Privatisation/Privateering

            • Linux Foundation

              • Linux Foundation, Blacks In Technology Announce Up To $100,000 In Training & Certification

                The Linux Foundation and The Blacks In Technology Foundation have joined hands to launch a new scholarship program to help more Black individuals get started with an IT career.

                Blacks in Technology will award 50 scholarships per quarter to promising individuals. The Linux Foundation will provide each of these recipients with a voucher to register for any Linux Foundation administered certification exam at no charge, such as the Linux Foundation Certified IT Associate, Certified Kubernetes Administrator, Linux Foundation Certified System Administrator and more.

              • Linux Foundation Launches New Open Source Best Practices Program

                The Linux Foundation has announced the availability of a new training program designed to introduce open source best practices.

                The course, called Open Source Management & Strategy, includes seven modules designed to help executives, managers, software developers and engineers “understand and articulate the basic concepts for building effective open source practices within their organization,” according to the Foundation’s press release.

        • Security

          • Security updates for Wednesday

            Security updates have been issued by Fedora (coturn, dovecot, glibc, and sudo), Mageia (openldap and resource-agents), openSUSE (dnsmasq, python-jupyter_notebook, viewvc, and vlc), Oracle (dnsmasq and xstream), SUSE (perl-Convert-ASN1, postgresql, postgresql13, and xstream), and Ubuntu (nvidia-graphics-drivers-418-server, nvidia-graphics-drivers-450-server, pillow, pyxdg, and thunderbird).

          • BeyondTrust Privilege Management for Unix & Linux Grows Q4 Revenue 83% YoY by Securing Cloud Infrastructure [Ed: They always love talking about "Clown Computing" instead of servers (which is what they really allude to)]
          • Fear, Uncertainty, Doubt/Fear-mongering/Dramatisation

            • Dangerous new malware targets unpatched Linux machines [Ed: This is not a "Linux" issue and it's nothing to do even with stuff that's installed on top of (GNU/)Linux, unless a negligent system administrator is lousy at patching]

              According to a report from Check Point Research (CPR), the malware variant, named FreakOut, specifically targets Linux devices that run unpatched versions of certain software.

            • ‘FreakOut’ Botnet Targets Unpatched Linux Systems [Ed: Same as above]
            • Fileless Malware on Linux: Anatomy of an Attack

              Fileless malware is a growing concern for Linux administrators. Linux is considered a very secure OS by design – and rightfully so. With its robust privilege system and the “many eyes” of the open-source community scrutinizing the increasingly popular OS’s code for security vulnerabilities, Linux users are generally much safer than their Windows-using counterparts. That being said, sound administration and the implementation of security best practices can help prevent fileless malware attacks and other dangerous modern exploits that threaten Linux systems.

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • Roundup of Secure Messengers with Off-The-Grid Capabilities (Distributed/Mesh Messengers)

              Amid all the conversation about Signal, and the debate over decentralization, one thing has often not been raised: all of these things require an Internet connection.


              “Blogs” have a way to reblog (even a built-in RSS reader to facilitate that), but framed a different way, they are broadcast messages. They could, for instance, be useful for a “send help” message to everyone (assuming that people haven’t all shut off notifications of blogs due to others using them different ways).

              Briar’s how it works page has an illustration specifically of how blogs are distributed. I’m unclear on some of the details, and to what extent this applies to other kinds of messages, but one thing that you can notice from this is that a person A could write a broadcast message without Internet access, person B could receive it via Bluetooth or whatever, and then when person B gets Internet access again, the post could be distributed more widely. However, it doesn’t appear that Briar is really a full mesh, since only known contacts in the distribution path for the message would repeat it.

              There are some downsides to Briar. One is that, since an account is fully localized to a device, one must have a separate account for each device. That can lead to contacts having to pick a specific device to send a message to. There is an online indicator, which may help, but it’s definitely not the kind of seamless experience you get from Internet-only messengers. Also, it doesn’t support migrating to a new phone, live voice/video calls, or attachments, but attachments are in the works.

    • Defence/Aggression

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • Molly de Blanc: Inauguration Pie

        How can I put four years into a pie? I’m thinking of Inauguration Day 2017 through to today, Inauguration Day 2021. In truth things started back in 2015, when Donald Trump announced his run for the United States’ presidency, and I don’t know how long things will continue past the moment when President-Elect Joe Biden becomes President Joe Biden.

        For the United States, it’s been a hell of a time. For the world, it’d been even worse. Every generation thinks that they lived through more than anyone else, that they had it worse. I had a Boomer tell me that the existential stress of COVID is nothing compared to the Vietnam War. I’m sure when we are living through a global water crisis, I’ll tell the kids that we had it bad too. Everyday I listen to the radio and read Twitter, aware that the current state of endless wars – wars against terrorism and drugs, organized crime and famine, climate change and racism – is global, and not limited to just what’s happening to and around me. That makes it feel worse and bigger and I wonder if earlier generations can really grasp how big that is.


        So I will put my hope into this pie. I put my pain and anger into the dough. I will put my tears and helplessness and bitterness into the filling. I will cover it sweetness and the delicate hope I’ve spun out of sugar. Soon I will bake it and share it with the three other people I see because the most important thing about surviving these past years, these past months and weeks and days, is that we did it together. We will commiserate on what we’ve overcome, and we will share our hope and the sweetness of the moment, as the spun sugar dissolves on our tongues. There is so much we have left to do, so much we must do. We will be angry in the future, we may be angry later today, but until then, we have pie.

    • Monopolies

      • Patents

        • District court 2020 rankings: top plaintiffs, defendants and firms | Managing Intellectual Property [Ed: "Google was the most sued business" according to site funded for propaganda of litigation profiteers]

          WSOU Investments filed the most cases, Google was the most sued business, and Rabicoff Law and Fish & Richardson were the busiest firms, according to new data

        • New (Temporary) USPTO Leadership

          Note, I’m calling these folks “ACTING ____” because it is simpler and makes sense. BUT, the “acting” title is a term of art defined within the US Code. To avoid some of the legal requirements associated with being an “acting director,” the temporary leadership is using the longer title of someone “Performing the functions and duties of ____”

          Acting Director – Drew Hirshfeld.

        • Software Patents

          • $3,000 for Cedar Lane Technologies Prior Art

            On January 20, 2021, Unified Patents added a new PATROLL contest, with a $3,000 cash prize, seeking prior art on at least claim 1 of U.S. Patent 8,165,867. This patent is owed by Cedar Lane Technologies, Inc., an NPE. The ’867 patent relates to wirelessly controlling an electronic device with another electronic device in real time. The ’867 patent has been asserted against D-Link, Disney, Dish Network, Comcast, LG, iHeart Media, ViacomCBS, TCL Communication, and SiriusXM.

Links 20/1/2021: LibreOffice 7.1 RC2 and the RHEL Contingency

Posted in News Roundup at 4:02 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Linux at Home: Digital Music Production with Linux

      We are told by our governments that in the current crisis the single most important action we can take is to stay at home and minimise the amount of contact with others. The new variants of Covid-19 are much more transmissible than the virus’s previous version. The advice to stay safe is therefore even more important. It’s only with everyone abiding by the law can we protect our health services and save lives.

      In this series, we look at a range of home activities where Linux can play its part, making the most of our time at home, keeping active and engaged. The change of lifestyle enforced by Covid-19 is an opportunity to expand our horizons, and spend more time on activities we have neglected in the past.

    • Server

      • Help safeguard your Linux server from attack with this REST API

        CrowdSec is an open source cybersecurity detection system meant to identify aggressive behaviors and prevent them from accessing systems. Its user-friendly design offers a low technical barrier of entry with a significant boost to security.

        A modern behavior detection system written in Go, CrowdSec combines the philosophy of Fail2ban with Grok patterns and YAML grammar to analyze logs for a modern, decoupled approach for securing the cloud, containers, and virtual machine (VM) infrastructures. Once detected, a threat can be mitigated with bouncers (block, 403, captcha, and so on), and blocked internet protocol addresses (IPs) are shared among all users to improve everyone’s security further.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

    • Kernel Space

      • Initial Patches Posted For Bringing Up The Linux Kernel On Apple Silicon M1 Hardware

        Following a very active past couple of days, developers from security startup Corellium have followed through on their word so far of publishing the Apple Silicon patches to the Linux kernel mailing list for possible upstreaming in the future that allow the Linux kernel to boot with Apple M1 hardware.

        Corellium developers sent out their first set of seven patches under a “request for comments” flag this morning. These are the minimal changes needed for getting Linux to boot on the current Apple M1 ARM-based hardware.

      • Ubuntu Now Runs on Apple Silicon, Devs Say It’s ‘Completely Usable’

        Developers at ARM virtualisation company Corellium have managed to get Ubuntu 20.04 up and running on the new Apple Silicon Mac Mini.

        And we’re not talking ‘it boots and prints a load of text’ running here. No, this is the full Ubuntu desktop experience — and it’s already being described as “completely usable”!

      • Linux is now ‘fully usable’ on Apple Silicon M1 Macs

        Security researchers at Corellium have ported a version of Linux to the Apple Silicon M1 chip that will ultimately be released under an open-source license.

        The Linux version is a full Ubuntu desktop operating system booted from a USB, according to Corellium Chief Technology Officer Chris Wade. Although details are scarce, he said that Linux is now “completely usable” on Apple Silicon machines.

    • Applications

      • VirtualBox 6.1.18 Released with Full Support for Linux Kernel 5.10 LTS

        VirtualBox 6.0.18 comes about three months after VirtualBox 6.1.16 and it’s the first release to introduce full support for the latest and greatest Linux 5.10 LTS kernel series, which is available for both Linux host and guests.

        Of course, this means that you’ll be able to run GNU/Linux distributions powered by the Linux 5.10 LTS kernel as a virtual machine inside VirtualBox, as well as to install VirtualBox on a GNU/Linux system running Linux kernel 5.10 LTS.

      • Starting Element Messenger Web, Desktop and Phone

        Element (formerly Riot.im) is a modern all in one messenger for everyone. Featuring basic chat to file sharing as well as video conferencing, it is designed for users of web, GNU/Linux, Windows, MacOS, plus also Android and iOS. In this regard, Element is a great alternative to WhatsApp or Telegram. This basic tutorial will show you, after introducing it (see here and here), how to use it on Ubuntu and your phone. Let’s go!

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • How to Set Up Btrfs RAID – Linux Hint

        Btrfs is a modern Copy-on-Write (CoW) filesystem with built-in RAID support. So, you do not need any third-party tools to create software RAIDs on a Btrfs filesystem.
        The Btrfs filesystem keeps the filesystem metadata and data separately. You can use different RAID levels for the data and metadata at the same time. This is a major advantage of the Btrfs filesystem.

        This article shows you how to set up Btrfs RAIDs in the RAID-0, RAID-1, RAID-1C3, RAID-1C4, RAID-10, RAID-5, and RAID-6 configurations.

      • How to Co-author Documents in Linux with ONLYOFFICE Docs

        Document collaboration as the practice of multiple people working simultaneously on a single document is really important in today’s technologically advanced age. Using document collaboration tools, users can view, edit, and work simultaneously on a document without sending emailing attachments to each other all day. Document collaboration is sometimes called co-authoring. Real-time document co-authoring is not possible without special software.

    • Games

      • YoYo Games developer of GameMaker Studio sold for $10M

        Game Maker and later GameMaker Studio is a very popular game engine with indie developers and YoYo Games just recently sold it off and it appears they did so at a loss.

        Originally created by Mark Overmars, who later teamed up with YoYo Games who have carried it on since 2007. Later in 2015 the YoYo Games studio was acquired by Playtech for around $16.4 million dollars.


        For game developers, the game engine you rely on suddenly changing hands with no prior notice and no announcement a week later must be a little frightening. Games often take multiple years to create, so for developers well into the thick of using GameMaker Studio hopefully the result will be a good one. Perhaps though, the time is ripe to check out Godot Engine since it’s free and open source.

      • Aveliana is a beautiful upcoming infiltration-action game mixing 2D and 2.5D styles | GamingOnLinux

        TheFrenchDev have announced Aveliana, what they’re calling an infiltration-action-adventure game that mixes together 2D and 2.5D to create a unique looking style.

        “Embrace Aveliana’s quest to bring back someone she has lost! The game takes place alternatively in an isometric or a 2D point of view and is fast-paced. Guide her through arduous paths watched by monsters, follow the trace of a mysterious fox, and find the powerful artifacts she is looking for at the core of wonderful temples. Will you stealth your way to victory? Seek a forgotten path on the edge of a cliff? Or stand and fight against your enemies? The choice is yours!”


        We spoke with the developer behind the project, who clearly stated to us in a message how Linux will be fully supported. In fact, even their early rough work-in-progress demo on Game Jolt has a Linux build available. It’s being built with the Unity game engine, which for the most part has good cross-platform support for games like this.

      • Play the charming co-op construction game Unrailed! free for a few days plus big sale

        Unrailed! from Daedalic Entertainment and Indoor Astronaut released back in September 2020 and now you have a chance to play for free to end your week. Don’t pass up on it either from now until January 25 you can download and play the full game on Steam, and there’s a 50% discount if you decide you like it enough to keep it.

        What do you actually do in Unrailed! and is it fun? You and up to three others need to keep a train going for as long as possible, by constantly building a track. It’s pure chaos once it gets going and an absolute riot to play with friends. Plenty of communication breakdowns, shouting and laughing all bundled in together. The train will get faster as you go too, plus you can upgrade it with new carriages and all sorts.

      • Valve and others fined by the European Commission for ‘geo-blocking’

        The European Commission just announced that they’ve now issued formal fines against Valve, Bandai Namco, Capcom, Focus Home, Koch Media and ZeniMax for breaching their antitrust rules. An investigation that has been going on for some time now since early 2017, and certainly not the first fine Valve has dealt with for breaking some rules here.

        What’s the deal? The EU say that Valve and the others restricted cross-border sales on the basis of their location inside the European Economic Area (‘EEA’). To put it simply: Valve allowed certain developers and publishers to block keys being redeemed in one country, that were purchased in another (where it might have been cheaper). Out of all those named, Valve is the only company that did not cooperate with their investigation and so they got slapped a lot harder.


        For a company as big as Valve (and the likes of ZeniMax), they won’t be losing any sleep over fines that for them will most likely be a drop in the ocean. Valve especially, as the Steam store pretty much prints money for them.

      • The 25 Best Games for Linux and Steam Machines
      • Linux Games 40 Linux Games That You Must Play in 2021

        It has been 3 years since we compiled a list of games for Unix-like operating systems in The 25 Best Games for Linux and Steam Machines. We are now in 2021 and these games are bound to keep you glued to your computers for a while. So, listed in nor particular order, here are the best 40 games to play on your Linux machine this 2021.

    • Distributions

      • Gentoo Family

        • A farewell to Sabayon Linux

          After a hiatus of ten months in the blog posts on the Sabayon Linux Website, a couple of posts on 20 November 2020 announced that the distribution was switching its base distribution from Gentoo Linux to Funtoo Linux (‘Sabayon and Funtoo Linux Merge Projects’), and that the distribution was rebranding (‘Sabayon project is rebranding to MocaccinoOS’) and moving to a completely different package manager named ‘Luet’. A new Website and forum for MocaccinoOS were started, and the Sabayon Linux forums and Wiki are no more.

          Although my first experience of Linux was Ubuntu in 2006, it was Sabayon Linux in early 2007 that turned me into a full-time Linux enthusiast and got me interested in the Portage package manager and Gentoo Linux, which I have been using as my main OS for many years now. My interest in Sabayon Linux waned when it moved to a binary package manager (‘Entropy’), and later when it switched from OpenRC to systemd.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • Red Hat introduces free RHEL for small production workloads and development teams

          When Red Hat announced it was switching up CentOS Linux from a stable Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) clone to a rolling Linux distribution, which would become the next minor RHEL update, many CentOS users were upset. Now, to appease some of those users, Red Hat is introducing no-cost RHEL for small production workloads and no-cost RHEL for customer development teams.

        • Red Hat Announces No-Cost RHEL For Small Production Environments

          Following the announcement at the end of last year that CentOS 8 will be ending and instead focusing on CentOS Stream as the future upstream to RHEL, there have been many concerned by the absence of CentOS 8 past this year. In trying to fill that void, Red Hat announced today they will be making Red Hat Enterprise Linux free for small production deployments.

          Red Hat has announced an expanded developer program where now the individual RHEL Developer subscription is supported for production environments up to 16 systems. Previously the program allowed free RHEL access only for “development” purposes but can now be used in production up to that 16 system limit.

        • Red Hat introduces new no-cost RHEL option

          As you know, Red Hat recently announced that CentOS Linux 8, as a rebuild of RHEL 8, will end in 2021. CentOS Stream continues after that date, serving as the upstream (development) branch of Red Hat Enterprise Linux. The news met with a strong reaction from the open-source community and CentOS users. Today, Red Hat released a new option where RHEL developer subscriptions can now be used in production environments. The developers and team can have up to 16 systems. In other words, it is a no-cost RHEL that small groups and developers can use to build packages and in production environments.
          [continue reading…]

        • Red Hat expands no-cost RHEL options

          Red Hat has announced a new set of options meant to attract current CentOS users who are unhappy with the shift to CentOS Stream.

        • CentOS is gone—but RHEL is now free for up to 16 production servers

          Last month, Red Hat caused a lot of consternation in the enthusiast and small business Linux world when it announced the discontinuation of CentOS Linux.
          Long-standing tradition—and ambiguity in Red Hat’s posted terms—led users to believe that CentOS 8 would be available until 2029, just like the RHEL 8 it was based on. Red Hat’s early termination of CentOS 8 in 2021 cut eight of those 10 years away, leaving thousands of users stranded.

          As of February 1, 2021, Red Hat will make RHEL available at no cost for small-production workloads—with “small” defined as 16 systems or fewer. This access to no-cost production RHEL is by way of the newly expanded Red Hat Developer Subscription program, and it comes with no strings—in Red Hat’s words, “this isn’t a sales program, and no sales representative will follow up.”

        • Getting to know Kyeong Sang Kim, Red Hat general manager for Korea

          We’re delighted to welcome Kyeong Sang Kim to Red Hat as a general manager for Korea. In the new role, he will be responsible for Red Hat’s business operations in the country.

          Kyeong Sang is an expert in the field of IT consulting, supporting numerous business innovation projects for more than 25 years. Prior to joining Red Hat, Kyeong Sang served as the CEO of SICC (Ssangyong Information & Communications Corp), where he successfully led the company’s digital transformation to the cloud. He has also held several other leadership roles at global companies, including Accenture.

          We caught up with Kyeong Sang to find out more about his interest in open source and Red Hat, and his insights on leadership.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

  • Leftovers

    • Trump’s Facts-Optional Assault On Chinese Tech Continues With Blocking Of Xiaomi

      All of these statements can be true:

    • When the Painting Has Really Begun

      Critics are not required to be right, merely (as Donald Judd said of artworks) interesting. But part of what makes criticism of new art potentially interesting is that it is, in part, a gaze into the future. Remember Clement Greenberg in The Nation in 1946 predicting of Jackson Pollock’s work, “In the course of time, this ugliness will become a new standard of beauty,” and two years later, venturing that one of the same artist’s paintings “will in the future blossom and swell into a superior magnificence; for the present it is almost too dazzling to be looked at indoors.” Most criticism, of course, doesn’t make its wagers on the future so explicitly, nor should it. Greenberg only unsheathed his crystal ball during those rare moments of highest intensity of feeling, and we should follow that example. Yet still our judgements remain hostages to fortune.

    • Health/Nutrition

      • In Historic First, Biden Picks Trans Woman, Dr. Rachel Levine, to Help Lead HHS
      • Government Mistakes Provided the Breeding Ground for the Mutant Virus, Which it is Now Using as an Alibi for Its Failures

        The new virus mutated during the second wave of the epidemic with the first case becoming known in September, though the danger it posed only became clear in December. The renewed epidemic in late summer was centered on Thanet and Swale, both on the north Kent coast, and was particularly severe in their most deprived districts.

        Government scientists expressed alarm at the steep and unexpected increase in coronavirus cases in Kent, despite the November lockdown. “This variant became of interest because there was an investigation of the increasing case numbers in Kent in early December, despite the national lockdown,” said Professor Peter Horby, the chairman of the government’s New and Emerging and Respiratory Virus Threats Advisory Group (NERVTAG).

      • Flint Residents Still Sick as Former Michigan Gov. Faces “Willful Neglect” Charges in Water Scandal

        Former Michigan Governor Rick Snyder and eight other former officials were charged last Thursday in a sweeping criminal investigation into the Flint water crisis. Snyder faces two charges of willful neglect of duty, a misdemeanor. In 2014, Flint’s unelected emergency manager, appointed by then-Governor Snyder, switched the city’s water supply to the Flint River as a cost-saving measure. The move has been linked to at least 12 deaths from an outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease and widespread lead poisoning in residents, including children, in the majority-Black city. “It is really important that many of those elected, including the governor, are held to a higher standard,” responds Congressmember Rashida Tlaib of Michigan. She says some children face ongoing side effects from the water crisis, such as learning disabilities, and many residents remain sick and in need of support for their care.

      • Michigan Ex-Governor Charged With “Willful Neglect” in Flint Water Scandal
      • US Reaches Grim Milestone of 400K COVID Deaths Days Before Trump Leaves Office
      • U.S. Rep. Tlaib: “Israel Is a Racist State That Would Deny Palestinians Like My Grandmother a Vaccine”

        Israel has been hailed as having the world’s most vaccinated population, but Palestinians are not included. Human Rights Watch and others have called on Israeli authorities to provide COVID-19 vaccines to the more than 4.5 million Palestinians in the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip. “Israel is a racist state,” responds Congressmember Rashida Talib of Michigan, who is Palestinian American and one of the first Muslim women elected to Congress and says her Palestinian grandmother was denied access to a vaccine. “I hope my colleagues, I hope our country, sees what the Palestinians have been trying to tell us for a very long time. … You can see it with the distribution of the vaccine.”

      • When Medicare Helped Kill Jim Crow

        John Holloman was expecting to be disappointed, but he did not expect to be stood up. Dr. John L.S. “Mike” Holloman Jr. was both the president-elect of the National Medical Association, a professional group of Black doctors founded in 1895 in reaction to segregation within the American Medical Association, and the chair of the Medical Committee for Human Rights (MCHR). Informally known as the medical wing of the civil rights movement, the MCHR was a group of physicians and health care workers dedicated to ending segregation and the substandard care Black people faced in the United States. Copyright © 2021 by Mike Konczal. Adapted from Freedom from the Market by Mike Konczal. Published by The New Press. Reprinted here with permission.

      • How Operation Warp Speed Created Vaccination Chaos

        Hospitals and clinics across the country are canceling vaccine appointments because the Trump administration tells states how many doses they’ll receive only one week at a time, making it all but impossible to plan a comprehensive vaccination campaign.

        The decision to go week by week was made by Operation Warp Speed’s chief operating officer, Gen. Gustave Perna, because he didn’t want to count on supplies before they were ready. Overly optimistic production forecasts turned out to be a major disappointment in the rollout of the H1N1 vaccine more than a decade ago, also leading to canceled appointments and widespread frustrations with the government’s messaging.

    • Defence/Aggression

      • Opinion | About Suffering: A Massacre of the Innocents in Yemen

        The United Nations estimates the war has already caused 233,000 deaths, including 131,000 deaths from indirect causes such as lack of food, health services and infrastructure.

      • Capitol Insurrection Highlights Increasing Radicalization of Right-Wing White Police Officers

        At least 28 law enforcement officers from across the United States attended the Trump rally in Washington, D.C., on January 6 that led to the attack on the U.S. Capitol, with some even boasting on social media about taking part in the riot that left five people dead. BuzzFeed News investigative reporter Albert Samaha says off-duty police officers’ involvement in the insurrection reflects a growing problem of right-wing radicalization in police ranks — a problem Black officers say has gone unaddressed by higher-ups. Samaha says that while “white supremacist ideology in law enforcement is as old as law enforcement in the U.S.” there was a marked change in tone and attitudes among police officers following the 2014 Ferguson uprising against police brutality. He says that Donald Trump’s loud support for police against claims of misconduct and systemic violence gave officers new license to express bigoted and extremist views. “The top came off, and the rhetoric suddenly became acceptable within locker rooms,” he says.

      • New Charges Derail COVID Release for Hacker Who Aided ISIS

        A hacker serving a 20-year sentence for stealing personal data on 1,300 U.S. military and government employees and giving it to an Islamic State hacker group in 2015 has been charged once again with fraud and identity theft. The new charges have derailed plans to deport him under compassionate release because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

      • “Sense of Entitlement”: Rioters Faced Few Consequences Invading State Capitols. No Wonder They Turned to the U.S. Capitol Next.

        The gallery in the Idaho House was restricted to limited seating on the first day of a special session in late August. Lawmakers wanted space to socially distance as they considered issues related to the pandemic and the November election.

        But maskless protesters shoved their way past Idaho State Police troopers and security guards, broke through a glass door and demanded entry. They were confronted by House Speaker Scott Bedke, a Republican. He decided to let them in and fill the gallery.

      • Biden Can’t Lose Sight of the Nuclear Crisis

        At Wednesday’s inauguration, President-elect Joe Biden is likely to address the “four historic crises” he has repeatedly identified as confronting our country: a global pandemic, a severe recession, climate change and systemic racism. Yet even as so many challenges compete for our attention, we can’t afford to lose sight of a fifth crisis: the continued danger of nuclear annihilation.

      • Trump’s Support Of Cops Pays Off: Multiple Police Officers Under Investigation For Illegal Invasion Of The Capitol Building

        At the beginning of his term, President Trump promised he’d turn regular America into police-loving America:

    • Transparency/Investigative Reporting

      • Following the money Alexey Navalny’s boldest investigation yet describes a vast network of shell companies and frontmen working to build and sustain Vladimir Putin’s supposed seaside getaway

        Before Alexey Navalny flew home to Moscow and surrendered himself to Russia’s legal system, the anti-corruption activist lit the fuse on what is perhaps his biggest, boldest investigation yet. Navalny’s 14,000-word report (also a two-hour video) about Vladimir Putin’s supposed “palace” in Gelendzhik on the Black Sea coast is packed with drone footage and colorful images, including artistic visualizations of the mansion’s interior. On social networks and in the news media, the investigation immediately attracted significant attention for its detailed descriptions of the residence’s opulence and endless renovations. Navalny says outright that Putin’s apparent obsession with luxury borders on “mental illness.” But Navalny’s investigation also painstakingly chronicles the ownership and management schemes used to disguise how Russia’s long-time president allegedly came to be in possession of the country’s most valuable private home.

      • Navalny’s team releases investigation into Putin’s 100-billion ruble ‘palace’ in Gelendzhik

        Following the arrest of opposition figure Alexey Navalny, his Anti-Corruption Foundation (FBK) has released a new investigation about a “palace” built for Russian President Vladimir Putin in Gelendzhik — a resort town on the Black Sea.

      • Putin’s palace Navalny’s Anti-Corruption Foundation investigates the Russian president’s billion-dollar residence on the Black Sea

        Alexey Navalny’s Anti-Corruption Foundation has released a bombshell investigation into a $1.35-billion residence built for Russian President Vladimir Putin near a resort town on the Black Sea. Navalny’s team published the report the day after the opposition figure was put in pre-trial detention at Moscow’s notorious Matrosskaya Tishina prison. In addition to sharing the building’s floor plan and visualizations of the interiors, the anti-corruption activists recount the history of the construction project and dig into how it was financed by companies connected to members of Putin’s inner circle. “Meduza” sums up the highlights from the investigation.

      • Trump Reportedly Abandoned Pardons For Snowden And Assange

        The following was originally published as part of The Dissenter newsletter.Although several long shot campaigns were mounted, President Donald Trump did not pardon any whistleblowers who were indicted or prosecuted under the United States Espionage Act. He also declined to pardon the only journalist ever to be indicted under the World War I-era law.WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange and NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden were not offered clemency because Trump “did not want to anger Senate Republicans who will soon determine whether he’s convicted during his Senate trial.”“Multiple GOP lawmakers had sent messages through aides that they felt strongly about not granting clemency to Assange or Snowden,” according to CNN.NSA whistleblower Reality Winner, who was the first to be prosecuted under the Espionage Act under Trump, and former CIA officer John Kiriakou pursued pardons. They were effectively denied as well.On January 17, the New York Times reported that an associate of Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani told Kiriakou a pardon would cost him $2 million.

        “I laughed. Two million bucks—are you out of your mind?” Kiriakou told the Times. “Even if I had two million bucks, I wouldn’t spend it to recover a $700,000 pension.”

    • Environment

    • Finance

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • How Does Someone Like Lauren Boebert Get Elected?

        Early Monday came word that an inauguration rehearsal ended abruptly with the evacuation of the US Capitol’s west front, after reports of a nearby fire led security officials to fear a replay of the deadly January 6 riot. The alarm was for nothing, in traditional security terms, anyway: A nearby homeless encampment (sadly, there are many in the nation’s capital) went up in flames, causing the billowing black smoke that rose ominously behind the scene.

      • Ahistorical 1776 Report Issued by Trump Denounced as ‘Racist Garbage’ and ‘Most On-Brand Thing Possible’

        “Releasing the 1776 Commission report on MLK Day is the Trump administration reaffirming its commitment to racism above all else.”

      • Reaching His Peak
      • Opinion | The Rubble of Empire: A Fine Time To Begin Thinking About What Might Be Built in Its Place

        Doctrines of disaster and dreams of security as the Biden years begin.

      • Opinion | ‘It Is Like Satire’: Prince Charles’ Terra Carta Is a Manifesto for the Status Quo

        The ecological crisis demands we protect the Rights of Nature from being watered down.

      • After Four Years, Accountability is Long Overdue

        Even as a candidate, he repeatedly encouraged violence calling on his supporters to “knock the crap” out of protesters, like in the good old days, even telling police “don’t be too nice”. So on January 6th, the day he promised would be “wild”, it was inevitable that when he enjoined his supporters to march on the Capitol to “stop the steal” they followed his not so subtle bidding, to fight and show strength, with violence

        The ugly side of human nature was on display in his “Save America March”, as rioters carrying Trump flags attacked the Capitol, some carrying zip-ties planned to take and possibly execute Congressional hostages. They smashed their way into and looted Congressional offices. Carrying “Back the Blue” flags they beat police officers (one of whom later died) with US flags, pipes and fire extinguishers. Trump’s mob of white supremacists chanted “Our House” and did what the Confederate army in four years of war failed to do, bring the Confederate battle flag into the US Capitol, indicating this riot was also an open demand to continue Americas legacy of systemic racism.

      • Opinion | Don’t Let President Biden ‘Make Us the Dupes of Our Hopes’

        More than being a time of hope—or fatalism—the inauguration of President Joe Biden should be a time of skeptical realism and determination.

      • Opinion | Biden’s Inauguration Gives Us New Hope, but the Movement for Justice Must Continue to Build on Its Own Agenda

        There should be no reluctance to work with Biden to help pass critical reforms, but at the same time, the pressure for outside must continue to build for there to be any hope of change.

      • Hold on to That Fear

        This letter is about that nauseating, trembling fear you felt when the hate exploded at you on January 6. Please don’t forget it. Journal about it before it fades. Tolerate the nightmares. Keep pen and paper on your nightstand to record what woke you from screaming fits. Don’t block it out. Don’t let it go.

        If you can bank those emotions you had as you huddled together and hoped the doors would hold, that day may turn out to be a blessing for you…and even better for our republic. In fact, it may just be the thing that saves our republic if that is still possible.

      • As Senate Reconvenes, Why Isn’t Chamber Immediately Moving to Convict Trump for ‘Inciting Deadly Attack on Our Country’?

        “If the Senate trial was a right-wing judicial confirmation, Trump would have been convicted already.”

      • Opinion | Biden Must Drive a Stake Through the Heart of Dead-End “Centrism”

        There is no middle ground between lies and facts. There is no halfway point between civil discourse and violence. There is no midrange between democracy and fascism.

      • Senate Democrats Prove ‘Democracy Reform Is a Top Priority’ by Putting ‘For the People Act’ First

        “From a violent insurrection at the Capitol to the countless attempts to silence the vote of millions of Americans, attacks on our democracy have come in many forms,” said incoming Majority Leader Chuck Schumer.

      • As Guatemalan Forces Beat Back Migrant Caravan, Biden Urged to Reverse Trump Policies of ‘Cruelty and Coercion’

        “The answer is not to continue doing more of the same but to envision a new direction that respects the political and economic self-determination and dignity of our Central American neighbors.”

      • Warnock, Ossoff Officially Certified as Winners in Georgia Senate Runoffs
      • Must Our Billionaires Remain Politically Immortal?

        The great roulette wheel in the sky has most certainly stopped turning for casino king Adelson. He expired earlier this week at age 87. But Adelson’s $33-billion fortune will live on — and distort our nation’s political life for years to come.

        How many years? We can’t, of course, see the future. But we can see how the past impacts our present. Consider, for instance, the current impactful political presence of Timothy Mellon.

      • Trigger Finger for Armageddon: Trump and the Thermonuclear Monarchy

        House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is certainly of the view that Trump and nuclear weapons are not good matches, suggesting her own form of strategic deplatforming.  “This morning,” she writes in her letter to Democratic colleagues in the House, “I spoke to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mark Milley to discuss available precautions for preventing an unstable president from initiating military hostilities or accessing the launch codes and ordering a nuclear strike.”  She persists with the theme of mental instability, worried about a man she is convinced has gone crackers.  “The situation of this unhinged president could be more dangerous, and we must do everything that we can to protect the American people from his unbalanced assault on our country and our democracy.”

        DePaul University’s Ken Butigan also dabbles in a bit of comparative fancy in worrying that Trump has already engaged in his own version of a “first-strike on the US Capitol on Jan. 6,” having used “what amounted to well-understood ‘launch codes.’”  What was there to stop him “initiating an infinitely more destructive first-strike on a host of nations that have been in his administration’s cross-hairs for four years?”

      • From Reconciliation to a ‘Nuclear Strike on the Filibuster’: Progressive Memo Details Steps Biden Can Take to Defeat GOP Obstruction

        “Biden was elected with a mandate to break gridlock and deliver results. He should use it.”

      • America and the Mob

        Even as the United States fashioned an army, a constabulary, and an evolving rule of law, the mob continued to define what it meant to be an American. It policed the slave economy. It helped push the borders westward. It formed the shock troops that rolled back Reconstruction. A twentieth-century version of this mob rampaged during the long Red Summer violence that stretched from 1917 to 1923. It mobilized against the civil rights movement. And during the Trump era, it has reared its ugly head in Charlottesville, Portland, and last week on Capitol Hill.

        America is motherhood, apple pie…and the mob.

      • Opinion | Trump’s Batty Garden of Heroes: Whitney Houston, Samuel Adams, Alex Trebek, Kobe Bryant, Johnny Appleseed and 200-Plus More Who’ve Done An Amazing Job
      • Trump’s ‘March on Rome’

        Radical journalist John Pilger, for instance, tweeted that “the made-for-media theatrics on Capitol Hill were not an attempted ‘coup’. Coups are what the CIA stages all over the world. Neither was ‘democracy’ in peril. What democracy?”1 Jacobin magazine, the unofficial outlet for Democratic Socialists of America, announced that, appearances notwithstanding, the takeover was a defeat for the ultra-right in the face of growing ruling class unity.2

        Over at Sidecar, a blog site recently unveiled by the New Left Review, the editors airily dismissed the “hysteria over the Capitol Hill occupation”. “Yesterday’s ‘sacrileges’ in our temple of democracy – oh, poor defiled city on the hill, etc – constituted an ‘insurrection’ only in the sense of dark comedy,” wrote Mike Davis, a member of NLR’s editorial committee:

      • Trump May be on Trial, But the System that Produced Him will be Acquitted

        On one side, Trump’s endless stoking of political grievances – and claims that November’s presidential election was “stolen” from him – spilled over last week into a mob storming the US Capitol. They did so in the forlorn hope of disrupting the certification process of the electoral college vote, which formally declared his opponent, Joe Biden, the winner.

        On the other side, the Democratic party instituted a second, unprecedented impeachment process this week, in the slightly less forlorn hope that Trump leaves office disgraced and humiliated, foreclosing any possibility he can run again in 2024.

      • By ‘Force and Fraud’: Is This the End of the US Democracy Doctrine?

        Rumsfeld further alleged that “the idea that we could fashion a democracy in Iraq seemed to me unrealistic.” But the US’ top military chief was being dishonest. Writing in Mother Jones, Miles E. Johnson responded to Rumsfeld’s claim by quoting some of his previous statements where he, repeatedly, cited democracy as the main reason behind the US invasion, a war that was one of the most destructive since Vietnam.

        Certainly, it was not Rumsfeld alone who brazenly promoted the democracy pretense. Indeed, ‘democracy’ was the buzzword, parroted by thousands of Americans: in government, the military, mainstream media, and the numerous think-tanks that dotted the intellectual and political landscape of Washington.

      • Opinion | It Is Biden’s Historic Task to Reverse Reagan’s—and Trump’s—Reckless Radicalism

        Reagan’s failed radicalism has now run its course, and the United States, while culturally as divided as ever, is at an economic and environmental precipice.

      • 10 Bold Moves Biden Can Make Without Congress

        Even with control of the Senate, Democrats’ slim majority means that Republicans can still obstruct Biden’s policy agenda at every turn. Biden can and must wield his presidential powers through Executive Orders and regulations. The problems America is facing demand it. 

      • Opinion | Biden Must Go Beyond Simply Ending Trump’s Barbaric Border Policies—We Need Deeper Change

        An open letter to President-Elect Biden on Central America policy.

      • A Nation Wracked With Illness and Strife Says Good Riddance to Trump Presidency
      • A Slanted Narrative on Slanted Journalism

        Attkisson argues that we live in an Orwellian news environment: The major media outlets carefully filter information to make sure that journalists only present the “correct” view to their audience. Attkisson says reporters are so aware of this condition that they name it The Narrative.

        I wanted to see who Attkisson reveals as the formulator of The Narrative, since she asserts there is a “Big Brother constantly revising ‘facts’ to fit the government’s ever-changing story.” In this book from Attkisson, a five-time Emmy Award-winning investigative journalist and New York Times bestselling author, I was expecting a deep dive into the corporate world to find the culprits. It turns out, Attkisson says, it’s the liberals — not the billionaires.

      • Trump’s Snubbing of Biden’s Inauguration Ceremony Is a Rarity in US History
      • FBI Vetting Leads to Removal of 12 National Guard Members From Inauguration Duty
      • McConnell Admits Trump “Provoked” Jan. 6 Amid Rising GOP Support for Impeachment
      • Chomsky: Coup Attempt Hit Closer to Centers of Power Than Hitler’s 1923 Putsch
      • Insurrection at the Capitol

        His boastful speeches peppered with streams of lies convinced me the man was shallow. He certainly did not take democracy seriously. He acted as if he thought the country was his, merely for looting. His election and the anti-democratic and ecocidal policies of his administration confirmed my misgivings. Trump is impunity.

        I kept asking why Americans voted for him. Trump made clear he only cared for Trump.

      • What Should Go in the Trump Time Capsule?

        If you had to select a few objects to embody the Trump administration — especially, the ways in which its business intersected with the Trump family business — what would you pick? That’s the question posed by the final episode of “Trump, Inc.,” the podcast collaboration between ProPublica and WNYC.

      • Time for Biden to Dial Down the Lincoln and Dial Up the FDR

        Joe Biden has been on the campaign trail for more than 50 years. Now, after decades of speculation, several false starts, and three formal bids for the presidency, he will finally assume the nation’s highest office. To a greater extent than anyone on the American political stage, he has anticipated and prepared for the job he will take up on Wednesday. As such, Biden understands that the address he delivers after being sworn in as the 46th president must be not just the best of his career but one of the best in the 232 years since the first inauguration.

      • Farewell to a Monster
    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • As Beijing Continues To Creep Into Hong Kong, Internet Censorship Begins

        As we’ve written about recently, Beijing’s creep into Hong Kong control has turned into nearly a dash as of late. What started with July’s new “national security” law that allowed the mainland to meddle in Hong Kong’s affairs led to arrests of media members in July, the expulsion and arrest of pro-democracy politicians in November, and then expanded arrests of members of the public who have said the wrong things in January.

      • New OCC Rule Is a Win in the Fight Against Financial Censorship

        For years, financial intermediaries have engaged in financial censorship, shutting down accounts in order to censor legal speech. For example, banks have refused to serve entire industries on the basis of political disagreement, and other financial intermediaries have cut off access to financial services for independent booksellers, social networks, and whistleblower websites, even when these websites are engaged in First Amendment-protected speech. 

        Banks have refused to serve entire industries on the basis of political disagreement

        For the organizations losing access to financial services, this censorship can disrupt operations and, in some cases, have existential consequences. For that reason, financial censorship can affect free expression. As just one example, in Backpage.com, LLC v. Dart, a county sheriff embarked on a campaign to crush a website by demanding that payment processors prohibit the use of their credit cards to purchase ads on the site. The Seventh Circuit court of appeals held that the sheriff’s conduct violated the First Amendment and noted that the sheriff had attacked the website “not by litigation but instead by suffocation, depriving the company of ad revenues b