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Links 4/7/2020: LibreOffice 7.0 ‘Personal Edition’, Atari VCS Coming Soon

Posted in News Roundup at 4:40 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • Purism Presents Privacy-Focused “Librem 14” Linux Laptop

        Purism, the San Francisco-based computer hardware, and software company that focuses on security, privacy, and user freedom, has presented the Librem 14. This is a 14-inch screen laptop featuring hardware kill switches that enable the user to be 100% sure that the camera, microphone, Wi-Fi, or Bluetooth are indeed switched off. In addition to this, the Librem 14 has the Intel Management engine disabled and neutralized, while all unneeded firmware is also disabled or stripped out. In the area of protecting the user against hardware tampering, there’s the Librem Key that performs a series of checks upon boot, and the PureBoot that makes tampering a lot harder. The laptop is photographed upon shipping, and an image is included as proof for the recipient.

      • Purism Librem 14 brings its privacy-focused hardware kill switches to a new Comet Lake U Linux-based laptop

        Purism has rolled out its latest privacy-focused laptop. The sleek looking device comes with the promise that it has been designed “chip-by-chip, line-by-line, to respect your rights to privacy, security and freedom.” In a world where every company wants a slice of your data, it is a sales pitch that certainly offers some appeal. It further backs up on its promise with hardware kill switches that physically disconnect the camera and mic, or wireless and Bluetooth, helping to further set it apart from the competition.

        The Purism 14 comes pre-installed with PureOS, a custom enhanced privacy and security focused version of GNU/Linux with FSF (Free Software Foundation) accreditation. The company has built in better security defaults, HTTPS wherever it can be implemented, ad blocking, tracking protection and Apparmor sandboxed debs and Flatpak. It also works with its PureBoot and Librem key that detects software and hardware tampering, sold separately.

      • Chromebooks could soon get Steam support — and MacBooks should be worried

        Back in January, it was reported that plans were afoot for Chromebooks to get an almighty gaming shot in the arm. ChromeOS users would no longer have to content themselves with Android titles: instead, limited support for Steam games was on the horizon. Now an investigation by Android Police suggests that plan is progressing nicely, and that the feature might not be too far off.

        As expected, it’s not something that should be oversold: games will be supported via a Linux virtual machine, which seriously impacts the quantity available. But while Chromebooks won’t rival even the cheapest Windows 10 gaming laptop in terms of variety, it’ll still prove a nice bonus for anyone who values the portability, battery life and responsiveness of Chrome OS.


        At the time of writing, Steam lists 2,007 games in its Linux section — not all of which will run nicely on meagre Chromebook hardware. But there are some low-spec options that ChromeOS users would no doubt love to try: Counter Strike, Hollow Knight and Stardew Valley to name but three. And while that number is only a fraction of the 24,000-plus Steam games compatible with Mac, this upgrade could make Chromebooks a slightly more viable competitor to the likes of the MacBook Air when it comes to gaming.

        Chromebooks are big business, especially for students — a market that contains a whole lot of gamers. According to StatCounter, Linux represents just 1.84% of US OS installations, which isn’t a hugely significant slice of potential gamers — but that would more than double if it included the 2.75% of ChromeOS devices out there. Perhaps this will make developers work that bit harder to ensure their games perform well outside of Windows.

      • Chromebooks could get huge gaming boost with Steam support

        We knew the Steam compatibility was going to rely on the support for running Linux apps on Chrome OS, but according to code changes in Chromium open-source, the key is a new project with the codename “Borealis.” This is a Linux distribution based on Ubuntu that will apparently run inside Chrome OS just as Crostini (which is based on Debian Linux) does now.

        The reason for using it appears to be to maximize compatibility with Steam on Linux, which Valve has already put considerable work into; Ubuntu is the service’s preferred Linux distribution.


        Now, there aren’t a lot of Chromebooks with Intel 10th Gen processors just yet (we’ve reviewed the Samsung Galaxy Chromebook and the Lenovo Flex 5 Chromebook) but more should arrive before the end of the year.

        It will be interesting to see if this project finally reaches a public beta stage soon and whether gaming on Chromebooks is something that users actually want. With premium Chromebooks seemingly carving out an admittedly small place in the market now, it at least seems plausible compared to just a year or two ago when Google was alone in producing high-end Chromebooks.

    • Server

      • The 10 Best Linux Server Distros For Home And Businesses

        By the year 2020, it is estimated that there are close to 600 Linux distributions in the market. It includes both servers and Desktop versions; therefore, if you are looking for lightweight Linux distribution for your old PC or a reliable desktop version for employees in your organization, you may be overwhelmed with the number of choices for finding one for your use.

        In this post, we will focus on Linux server support, looking at some of the best server distros available. Currently, Linux is known as one of the leading server operating systems with stable and wide-range features and hence there is no doubt why it powers 90% of the world’s servers.

    • Applications

      • Dillo: Does This Ultra-Lightweight Browser Still Work in 2020?

        Before jumping in, you should know exactly what Dillo doesn’t include, just to temper your expectations. Dillo does not include Flash, Java, or Javascript and only has limited support for frames. It also doesn’t allow you to create a user profile. Presumably, that will be most of the modern Internet out of the picture, but who knows? We’ll see.

        The advantage of all that feature-cutting is that it will run on almost anything – even a 486 with dial-up Internet. Running at idle, Dillo was using 2.9 MB of RAM and 9.5 MB of shared memory, which is microscopic compared to the gigs of RAM used by modern browsers.

        If you’re willing to trawl the Internet, people have run it on Mac, DOS, and a bunch of Unix variants, but now the website just has source tarballs, mostly focusing on Linux. It can also run on Windows, but the Dillo team actively dislikes the platform!

    • Instructionals/Technical

    • Wine or Emulation

      • Wine-Staging 5.12 Comes In Much Lighter With Many Patches Upstreamed

        Wine-Staging at one point was traditionally 800+ testing/experimental patches on top of the upstream Wine code-base, even as recently as March when it was 850+ patches. Thanks to more work being upstreamed, last month it hit just over 700 patches and now with today’s release of Wine-Staging 5.12 it represents a delta of just 665 patches.

        With Friday’s release of Wine 5.12 upstreamed out of staging were many patches relating to Direct Manipulation, NTDLL, Wine Server, include files, and other bits. Thanks to that this is one of the smallest patch sets to staging in recent memory.

    • Games

      • Atari VCS set for Fall 2020 release

        The new Atari VCS PC-console hybrid is set to start shipping to Indiegogo backers this Fall, the company said in a recent press release. The news comes alongside an announcement of Missile Command: Recharged, the latest remaster-style re-release of an old-school classic on the VCS system. The fleet of newly redesigned classics serve as the major draw to the VCS insofar as software, but it’s the system’s unique Linux-based design that stands out.

        Atari is branding the VCS as a true multmedia console that can switch to and from an open-ended PC at will. Gamers can load up multiple operating systems like Windows 10, Chrome OS, or Linux and play PC games in the console’s Sandbox Mode. This allows lots of flexibility for the platform and is pretty innovative. Gamers can also switch back over to the VCS’ native mode and play games specifically made for the platform on Atari’s storefront, which will sell old-school retro classics and re-imagined titles with new modern designs.

        The VCS also has modular parts and will let you swap out or upgrade new RAM sticks. Other multimedia includes a built-in web browser, access to streaming services, and digital video/music playback.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • KDE Starts July With More Fixes, More QML’ing In The System Settings Area

          KDE developers remain very active with improving this open-source desktop environment even amid the coronavirus pandemic.

          KDE developer Nate Graham is out with another weekly summary of all the accomplishments for this open-source community over the past week. Some of the highlights for this week in the KDE world include:

          - The Dolphin file manager and Konsole terminal now have a “copy location” menu item.

          - HiDPI scale factor fixes for various non-default task switchers.

        • This week in KDE: A little bit of everything

          A lot of exciting things are happening behind the scenes these days, but in terms of what landed this week, we focused on bugfixing–including a few nice high DPI fixes–and also got a few nice Dolphin and Konsole features.

        • Raspberry Pi 4 & Manjaro Plasma 20.04 – Jolly good?

          Manjaro Plasma for ARM v8 (Pi 4 among others) is an interesting concept. But it’s not mature enough just yet. There are too many teething problems, chief among them being video performance and heating. The conflict with package manager is also troubling, as it renders the system unusable with ordinary users. Various other bugs and papercuts, including some that I’ve not really mentioned, the styling and branding, plus the leftovers from the image building process all leave their negative mark on the total score.

          From the usability perspective, Manjaro Plasma runs just fine. The speed is quite decent when it comes to how quick and responsive the desktop is. I am quite pleased with the overall concept – this is an advanced and complete desktop solution – weighed down with sub-optimal performance and bugs. I hope these will be resolved soon, because I would then even consider Manjaro for my mini-real production setup, and that would be quite a step from where my workflow normally floweth. At the moment, Raspberry Pi OS remains the optimal if not ideal distro for Raspberry Pi 4. Well, we shall see how this evolves. Take care and stay tuned.

        • GSoC’20 First Evaluation

          In the last blog, I wrote about my first two weeks on the GSoC period. In this blog, I would write about the activities to which I have worked further and implemented multiple datasets.


          Why multiple datasets to GCompris activities?

          As previously all of the activities were having a generalized dataset so for some of the age groups as for 3-5 yrs the activity seems quite difficult to play, and also for some of the age groups the activity seems to be quite easy. So, multiple datasets help in resolving this issue and we have multiple data for various age groups and all the activities can be more adaptive for the children.

    • Distributions

      • Collection of Multiboot Making for Distros

        Thanks to my business going well with shipping many usb flash drives in Indonesia, I managed to make multiboot many distros previously I could not. Most notably are Deepin, openSUSE, Slackware which are not supported, aside from the ones automatically supported to make multiboot with notably Ubuntu family and Fedora, not to mention others. Now as I have many notes about them I want to list them out here in one place. Happy booting!

      • SUSE/OpenSUSE

        • openSUSE Leap 15.2 Is Finally Out With AI, ML, DL, And Container Tools

          The openSUSE team has finally announced a new stable version openSUSE Leap 15.2. The new release includes several security updates, bug fixes, new tools, and features.

          It is a successor to the previous version Leap 15.1 and also a regular release that comes with a maintenance life cycle of 18 months.

          So, if you’re using the current Leap 15.1, you should upgrade to the latest Leap 15.2 within the next six months as v15.1 will reach its EOL (End-of-Life) by the end of November 2020.


          For Kubernetes, Leap 15.2 has also added Helm package manager that helps developers and system administrators manage Kubernetes applications.

          Besides new tools, v15.2 has upgraded its several core packages. Here, I’m listing a brief list of improvements in Leap 15.2.

      • Debian Family

        • Security 101: Beginning with Kali Linux

          I’ve found a lot of people who are new to security, particularly those with an interest in penetration testing or red teaming, install Kali Linux™ as one of their first forays into the “hacking” world. In general, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that. Unfortunately, I also see many who end up stuck on this journey: either stuck in the setup/installation phase, or just not knowing what to do once they get into Kali.

          This isn’t going to be a tutorial about how to use the tools within Kali (though I hope to get to some of them eventually), but it will be a tour of the operating system’s basic options and functionality, and hopefully will help those new to the distribution get more oriented.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Canonical Will No Longer Support Ubuntu 19.10 After July 17, 2020

          Canonical, the company behind Ubuntu Linux, has officially announced that Ubuntu 19.10 “Eoan Ermine” will reach its end-of-life (EOL) on July 17, 2020. This means the Ubuntu developer team will no longer provide security patches, bug fixes, or any other updates.

          Additionally, you won’t even get updates for installed applications. In fact, you won’t be able to install new software using apt-get command without manually modifying sources.list. Hence, if you’re using v19.10, you should upgrade your system to the latest long-term release Ubuntu 20.04 Focal Fossa.

        • Screen Zoom and Mouse Indicator on Ubuntu 20.04

          Ubuntu can help you to enlarge screen items and easily display cursor movements to your audience. This article is a company to Focal For Teachers and continuation to Screen Zoom on KDE. This is practicable to every GNOME operating system not only Ubuntu but also Fedora, Red Hat, Zorin and others. You can watch practical examples in this new video below and also image editing videos I published recently. For teachers and tutorial makers, this article is for you. Enjoy!

        • Mircade Still Being Worked On As A Confined Mir + Snap Based Launcher

          Back in early 2017 “Mircade” was introduced as an arcade-style game launcher on Ubuntu powered by Mir. We hadn’t heard much of Mircade since 2017 but the effort is still alive for this Mir-based launcher that can trigger various apps to run under Wayland/Mir.

          Canonical’s Alan Griffiths published an Ubuntu blog post on Friday outlining this Snap confined shell based on Mir.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • MedSeg: AI(Artificial Intelligence)-based Free Online Segmentation Tool for Radiological Images

        The project is built with HTML5/ JavaScript and uses TensorFlow.js for AI. It’s deployed currently on Amazon Web Services (AWS). The developers uses several open-source libraries and packages most of them are battle tested in enterprise projects here is a list of them included resources that helped in creating this project, we are really proud in Medevel to see it’s listed there…


        MedSeg is a free, openly available segmentation tool that requires little training and no prior set-up to start using. You may manually segment your images or take advantage of their developed AI-models to ease the segmentation process of your interest. MedSeg may also contribute in your own segmentation work by developing further AI-models for your need.

      • Web Browsers

        • Mozilla

          • Firefox 80 To Support VA-API Acceleration On X11

            While recent Firefox releases have seen VA-API video acceleration working when running natively under Wayland, the Firefox 80 release later this summer will bring VA-API support by default to those running on a conventional X.Org Server.

            The bits are now landed that VA-API support within Mozilla’s Firefox web browser should be working fine on X11.

      • Productivity Software/LibreOffice/Calligra

        • Will LibreOffice 7.0 be only Personal Edition for individual use???

          Look at LibreOffice logo with “Personal Edition” phrase, look at sidebar in Start Center with the same phrase and note to “The Personal edition is supported by volunteers and intended for individual use.”
          And what is mean? Where is any public announcement? They say it was in marketing mail list. How many people read that mail list? Five?
          It means that I can’t install LibreOffice 7.0 in any organization in Russia, because our controlling people will be see very simple to legality in this case: open the About dialog -> read that “intended for individual use” and LibreOffice logo with “Personal Edition” -> you can’t use LibreOffice here! Nobody will check what say MPL 2.0 license about it or why TDF made it, they just point a finger at it and they will be right!
          It will close for LibreOffice any education organizations like schools or colleges or universities.
          I wont popularize LibreOffice for young people because they will never see LibreOffice in them schools.
          I against these changes. Please revoke it!

      • Programming/Development

        • Heap Data Structure Tutorial

          Data is a set of values. Data can be collected and put in a row, or in a column, or in a table or in the form of a tree. The structure of data is not only the placement of data in any of these forms. In computing, the data structure is any of these formats, plus the relationship among the values, plus the operations (functions) perform on the values. You should already have basic knowledge on tree data structure before coming here, as the concepts there, will be used here with little or no explanation.

        • Perl/Raku

          • Perl Weekly Challenge 67: Number Combinations and Letter Phone

            Perl does not have a built-in combinations function, but there are several modules (for example Math::Combinatorics) providing the functionality. However, this being a coding challenge, I don’t want to use a third-party ready-made solution and prefer to show a way to do it yourself.

            If we knew in advance how many items we want in each combination, nested loops might be the best solution. But if we want to be flexible about the number of items in each combination, then it is often simpler to use a recursive approach. Here, the combinations subroutine is recursive and is called once for every item wanted in the combination.

          • Lucky Number Per7

            I swear it was Perl 5 just a moment ago. I turned my back for all of 5 minutes …

            I don’t need the new features, but I don’t like boilerplate and I’m happy to accommodate those who seek progress. Harking back to lessons from the past, SysAdmins of a certain age may remember the venerable a2p program for converting awk scripts to perl and the horrendous (but working) code that it produced. We had one of those running in production less than 2 years ago until I finally decided to re-write it in Modern Perl. A bit like moving house, as a community we need to face the pain every so often and address the risks and ptifalls, not as reasons to keep to the status quo, but as a checklist of problems to be solved.

        • Python

          • Find the coefficients of the Quadratic Equation of the given two roots with Python

            In this example, you are expected to find the coefficients of the quadratic equation of the given two roots (x1 and x2) with a python function.

            The Quadratic Equation looks like this ax^2 + bx + c = 0. Our mission is to find the coefficients of the equations which is a, b, and c. The return type from the function is a Vector containing coefficients of the equations in the order (a, b, c). Since there are infinitely many solutions to this problem, we fix a = 1.

            Below is the method to find the return Vector.

          • Python Bytes Episode #188: Will there be a “switch” in Python the language?
          • Python 3.9.0b4

            Python 3.9 is still in development. This release, 3.9.0b4, is the fourth of five planned beta release previews. Beta release previews are intended to give the wider community the opportunity to test new features and bug fixes and to prepare their projects to support the new feature release.

          • Python 3.9.0b4 is now ready for testing

            On behalf of the entire Python development community, and the currently serving Python release team in particular, I’m pleased to announce the release of Python 3.9.0b4.

          • 10 most useful Python Dictionary Methods

            Dictionary is used in python to store multiple data with key-value pairs. It works like an associative array of other programming languages. The curly ({}) brackets are used to define a dictionary and the key-value is defined by the colon(:). The content of the key and value can be numeric or string. Python has many built-in methods to do different types of tasks on the dictionary data such as add, update, delete, search, count, etc. 10 most useful dictionary methods of python are explained in this article.

          • 10 most useful Python String Methods

            The string data is the characters of an array that contains one or more characters as value for any programming language. All printable characters such as alphabets, numbers, special characters, etc. are commonly used in the string data. ASCII code and Unicode are mainly used for converting any character to a number that the computer can understand. Python uses Unicode characters for string data. We need to perform different types of tasks based on the programming purpose on the string data such as searching the particular character or characters, capitalizing the first character, making all characters uppercase, etc. Python has many built-in string methods to do these types of tasks very easily. The 10 most useful python string methods are explained in this article.

          • Episode #271: Unlock the mysteries of time, Python’s datetime that is!

            Time is a simple thing, right? And working with it in Python is great. You just import datetime and then (somewhat oddly) use the datetime class from that module.

            Oh except, there are times with timezones, and times without. And why is there a total_seconds() but not total_minutes(), hours() or days() on timedelta? How about computing the number of weeks?

            What if you wanted to iterate over the next 22 workdays, skipping weekends?

            Ok, we’d better talk about time in Python! Good thing Paul Ganssle is here. He’s a core developer who controls time in CPython.

        • Shell/Bash/Zsh/Ksh

    • Standards/Consortia

  • Leftovers

    • Intel invests $253 million in India’s Reliance Jio Platforms

      Intel Capital, the investment arm of chipmaker Intel, has invested $253 million in India’s Reliance Jio in exchange for a 0.39% stake.

      This is the 12th investment in Reliance Jio in the last 11 weeks, taking the tally to $15.5 billion. Jio Platforms has raised more money in 2020 than all of India’s startups combined last year.

      Jio is India’s biggest mobile network provider with more than 388 million customers on board. Jio Platform is an umbrella company for its digital businesses including the carrier.

    • Ambani’s Jio Adds Intel Backing With $253 Million Stake Sale

      Ambani’s digital unit has sold about 25% in stakes and has said it reached its goal of reducing net debt to zero earlier than its March 2021 target. Jio is expected to use its roughly 400 million wireless phone subscribers as the cornerstone of an e-commerce and digital services business.

    • Intel Capital To Invest $253 Mln In India’s Reliance Jio

      Intel Capital’s investment represents a 0.39% equity stake in the Indian telecom operator Jio, which has more than 388 million subscribers.

    • Remote Work is Surprisingly Productive, But For Many… Something Is Missing

      What If Working From Home Goes on … Forever?, asks science and technology journalist Clive Thompson in the title of his June 9 NY Times Magazine article. “The coronavirus crisis is forcing white-collar America to reconsider nearly every aspect of office life. Some practices now seem to be wastes of time, happily discarded; others seem to be unexpectedly crucial, and impossible to replicate online. For workers wondering right now if they’re ever going back to the office, the most honest answer is this: Even if they do, the office might never be the same.”

      A recent survey found that of the 56% of respondents employed pre-Covid-19, half were working from home, – 35% having recently switched to working from home, while another 15% were already doing so pre-Covid; 37% continued to commute to work, and 10% had been recently laid-off or furloughed. The survey was based on two separate national samples of US data, – one which gathered 25,000 responses in early April, and the second another 25,000 responses in early May.


      Besides increasing the productivity and job satisfaction of their employees, another attraction for employers is shrinking real estate costs. The USPTO estimates that they’ve saved over $38 million in headquarters office space. In addition, companies have access to a larger pool of talented employees who may not afford to relocate to expensive cities or prefer not to do so for family or other reasons. “And in the pandemic, they may need to accommodate employees who – even after health authorities reopen their state – don’t want to come back,” added Thompson. “Many will hesitate at the idea of riding a crowded, unventilated elevator to an open office where people are crowded together.”

      “The truth, as I heard from many of the newly remote workers I interviewed, is that as much as our offices can be inefficient, productivity-killing spreaders of infectious disease, a lot of people are desperate to get back to them,” wrote Thompson in conclusion. “That’s because office work is more than just straightforward productivity – briskly ticking off to-do items. It also consists of the chemistry and workplace culture that comes from employees’ interacting all day, in ways that are unexpected and often inefficient, like the stray conversations that take place while people are procrastinating or bumping into one another on the way to lunch. During the pandemic, though, many employees worry that this culture is eroding.”

    • Health/Nutrition

      • Consensus Politics on the Fringe: The Intellectual Dishonesty of the Intellectual Dark Web

        Four quiet days before filing a lawsuit against the State of California this past May and with a make-or-break space launch less than a month out, grand genius and world savior Elon Musk took time out of his busy schedule to visit with Joe Rogan and put the COVID-19 crisis into terms we lesser minds could all understand. “Yeah th-the- these were, these were [sic] definitely not stand up, uh, you know, if if, fs’the [sic?] Supreme Court here I mean it’s, obviously c-complete violation of rights.” Genius language is tricky to parse even when intentionally pared down. Ever since it was revealed to Kanye West by Kanye West that he was a genius, popular media has laid supine to the myth that all geniuses are crazy and say whackadoodle things. So Mighty Musk was simply following the dictates of this natural law, espousing debunked conspiracy theories about COVID-19, and patriotically/selflessly extolling the constitutional privilege of citizens to work at his factories despite the unabating global pandemic.

      • Citing ‘Unconscionable and Irresponsible Omission,’ ACLU Demands Equal Covid-19 Protections for Immigrants

        “Immigration status shouldn’t be a death sentence, but if Congress doesn’t act soon, it will continue to be.”

      • ‘Greed Is a Danger to Public Health’: Progressive Caucus Urges Ban on Big Pharma Coronavirus Price-Gouging

        “As we’ve seen all too often from Big Pharma, saving lives is incidental to their business model—the profit motive always comes first.”

      • “New Corona Cases”:  A Phrase That’s Tells us Very Little, if Anything,  About the Actual Levels of Danger We  Face

        At the outset of the corona crisis I wrote an article, about the essential uselessness of the term  “corona  cases“ in our public discourse at that moment. Leaning  on the ideas of the Swiss linguist Saussure, who argued that  all semantic meaning  is relational, I described the term as a classic “empty” or “floating” signifier.

      • Trump and the GOP Are Sacrificing Working People for Political Gain

        Instead of protecting people, Senator Mitch McConnell and Rep. Kevin McCarthy—backed by the White House—are working hard to impose corporate immunity—ensuring negligent employers can’t be held responsible for failing to follow basic safety rules.

      • A Few Theoretical Percentages

        If the coronavirus/COVID-19 outbreak can be considered a national crisis (ignoring, in good American style, the global dimensions of the pandemic), it’s the third crisis in less than twenty years to hit the U.S.

      • I Got COVID-19 at Work. I Won’t be the Last

        At first, we had no masks. The plan for social distancing was chaotic at best, nonexistent at worst. Hundreds of angry customers were clamoring to get in.

      • Profiteering in the Era of COVID-19

        Several months ago, Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) called to end medical profiteering during the recent coronavirus pandemic where the development of drugs, tests, and vaccines will be integral to our getting through this difficult moment in our collective history. While MSF is foreseeing a future inevitability, it is also highlighting what is already happening as many businesses are price-gouging essential products during this crisis.

      • Mandatory College Football Practices in Time of Pandemic are Nuts

        The NCAA has just ruled that mandatory football practices can begin in July, anticipating a full season of college football. This is nuts. The pandemic isn’t going away; it’s surging in more than 29 states, with seven reporting new records for cases in a day. States that opened early without adequate safeguards — Texas, Florida, Arizona — now face a spread of the pandemic that may soon exhaust the supply of hospital beds. Deaths are now over 125,000. Increasing numbers of young people are contracting the disease, presumably because of the lack of social distancing, the scorn for masks that has accompanied the reopening in many states — and, of course, in the White House itself.

      • Venezuela’s Borderlands Have Been Assaulted by COVID-19

        Sixty percent of Venezuela’s COVID-19 cases are in its border states of Apure, Bolívar, Táchira, and Zulia. Roughly 70,000 Venezuelans who had moved to nearby countries of Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru (largely in response to crippling U.S. sanctions) have returned in the last two months via these Venezuelan border states since the COVID-19 crisis exploded in their new countries. Abandoned by their new homes during the pandemic, and many of them infected there, they are now returning in large numbers to Venezuela.

      • COVID Masks: The Latest Faux Conservative Outrage

        The bizarre “conservative” idea of “freedom” has struck again.

      • Covid Madness

        If I told you that Covid-19 was sparking recently reported episodes of madness here in the U.S., what do you imagine would be the reason? Maybe it would be the consequences of isolation. If you are alone and have few resources, lockdown might send you over the edge. Maybe it would be the pandemic’s impact on those with chronic hypochondria. This is obviously not an easy time to be stuck with an irrational fear of disease. Or maybe it is coming from the fundamentalist crowd (both Christian and Jewish) who believe that Covid-19 is the wrath of God yet can’t figure out why it is being visited upon their congregations. If you guessed any of these possible etiologies, you would missing the main cause.

      • Britain’s Disorder and Decline

        The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is no longer united, as most recently illustrated by the vastly dissimilar tactics to control the Covid-19 pandemic taken by England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. This follows the differences of opinion in each region concerning the disastrous Brexit decision to quit the European Union, as Scotland, for example, strongly supported remaining in the EU, and now 51 percent of Scots have indicated they would vote for independence from Britain — if they were permitted to have a vote on the matter. The citizens of Northern Ireland indicated their preference to remain in the EU by a majority of 56% to 44% and although 52.5 per cent in Wales voted to leave, there has been growing realisation that Brexit is a potential economic disaster, and in June the Welsh government announced that it will campaign for the UK to remain in the EU.

      • As Infection Rates Soar, Trump Says Virus Could Just ‘Disappear’
      • Trump and Pence – Step Aside for Professional Pandemic Scientists and Managers

        Major changes in society can be accomplished by a fast-emerging, broad-based civic jolt so obvious and persuasive that it overwhelms the entrenched powers. The most urgent job is for people to organize to get Trump and Pence to step aside from their bungling, making-matters-worse mismanagement of the Covid-19 pandemic. The White House should let a professional pandemic control specialist with public health experience and an appreciation of science replace the current and ongoing Trump horror show.

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Ransomware Operators Demand $14 Million From Power Company [iophk: Windows TCO]

          Available under the RaaS (Ransomware-as-a-Service) model, Sodinokibi is operated by a threat actor likely affiliated to “Pinchy Spider,” the group behind the GandCrab ransomware.

          While investigating the malware itself, AppGate discovered that it includes functionality to escalate privileges by leveraging 32-bit and 64-bit exploits for the CVE-2018-8453 vulnerability in the Win32k component of Windows.

        • Pseudo-Open Source

          • Privatisation/Privateering

            • Linux Foundation

              • Databricks Contributes MLflow Machine Learning Platform to The Linux Foundation

                Databricks, the company behind big data processing and analytics engine Apache Spark, contributes open source machine learning platform MLflow to The Linux Foundation. The announcement was made by Matei Zaharia, the creator of Apache Spark and MLflow projects, in his keynote presentation at the recent Spark AI Summit 2020 Conference which was held as a global virtual event.

                MLflow was created to help data scientists and developers with the complex process of ML model development which typically includes the steps to build, train, tune, deploy, and manage machine learning models. It manages the entire ML lifecycle, from data preparation to production deployment, including experiment tracking, packaging code into reproducible runs, and model sharing and collaboration, and is designed to work with any ML library.

              • Open Source FinOps Foundation Brings New Focus to Cloud Costs
        • Security

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • Tim Hortons is being sued for tracking your GPS location even when the app was off

              Tim Hortons is facing a class action lawsuit for its data collection practices – which include tracking your GPS location through their mobile app even when the app was turned off. This privacy violating behavior was not properly disclosed by the company’s privacy policy. While most people know Tim Hortons as the Canadian morning coffee brand of choice for those addicted to sipping hot caffeine, they are now being called out for their mobile app’s lack of respect for privacy. The lawsuit is being filed by two law firms out of Quebec: LPC Advocat Inc. and Consumer Law Group and follows the announcement of a formal investigation by the federal Privacy Commissioner as well as commissioners from Quebec, Alberta, and British Columbia.

            • Reddit and Linkedin apps also caught copying and pasting clipboard contents

              Linkedin and Reddit both check your clipboard and copy and paste your clipboard contents with every keystroke – even when you’re in another app. Another set of potential privacy violators have been called out by iOS 14’s new paste notifications. The discovery was publicized on Twitter by Don Cubed of urspace.io, who noted that his discovery was very similar to the experience of Jeremy Burge who called out Tik Tok for the same behavior early this week.

            • EFF Files Amicus Brief Arguing Geofence Warrants Violate the Fourth Amendment

              Should the police be able to force Google to turn over identifying information on every phone within a certain geographic area—potentially hundreds or thousands of devices—just because a crime occurred there? We don’t think so. As we argued in an amicus brief filed recently in People v. Dawes, a case in San Francisco Superior Court, this is a general search and violates the Fourth Amendment.

              The court is scheduled to hear the defendant’s motion to quash and suppress evidence on July 7, 2020.

            • Facebook discloses it exposed inactive-user data to developers

              The new incident involves about 5,000 app developers having access to user data if the users hadn’t been active on the app in the last 90 days, the point at which access was meant to be cut off. The cutoff date is an arbitrary figure set by Facebook rather than any legal requirement, but it was set by Facebook in response to previous concerns about data sharing.

            • Privacy advocates urge closer scrutiny of Google’s Fitbit acquisition

              Reuters reported today that the groups said they’re concerned that the acquisition of Fitbit could lead to reduced competition and help Google to extend its data collection apparatus for the purposes of targeted advertisements.

              Fitbit is a maker of smartwatches that enable users to track their workouts, sleep quality and health. The company’s latest product, the Versa 2, packs additional features including an integration with the Alexa voice assistant. It has shipped more than 100 million devices to date and claims that its smartwatches are used by 28 million people worldwide.

              Twenty advocacy groups from Europe, Latin America, the United States and other regions have signed a joint statement urging government regulators to take a closer look at the acquisition. The groups include Access Now in Europe, Privacy International, Public Citizen in the U.S. and Brazil’s Institute of Consumer Defense.

            • U.S., EU advocacy groups warn against Google’s purchase of Fitbit

              Google announced the deal in November to take on competitors in the crowded market for fitness trackers and smart watches. Fitbit’s market share has been threatened by deep-pocketed companies like Apple Inc (AAPL.O) and Samsung Electronics Co Ltd (005930.KS).

              Australia’s competition authority said this month that it may have concerns about the deal and would make a final decision in August.

              EU antitrust regulators will decide by July 20 whether to clear the deal with or without concessions or open a longer investigation.

            • Facebook Privacy Glitch Gave 5K Developers Access to ‘Expired’ Data

              However, recently, “we discovered that in some instances apps continued to receive the data that people had previously authorized, even if it appeared they hadn’t used the app in the last 90 days,” said Konstantinos Papamiltiadis, vice president of Platform Partnerships with Facebook, in a Wednesday post.

    • Defence/Aggression

      • India and China Tussle on the Roof of the World

        The snowbound winter is a deep freeze. The wind is icy. All work stops, including the fighting. Everything is compressed into the thawed late spring, summer and early autumn … including the fighting. It is here that the Indian and Chinese armies face each other over a historically uncertain border. The troops are fractious.

      • The Democrat’s Hawkish, Dead-End Foreign Policy Is Also Very Bad Politics

        Is the party finally willing to recognize the failures—both morally and politically—of its pro-war stance?

      • Why Are House Democrats Siding With Liz Cheney to Prolong Endless War in Afghanistan?

        A small “left-right anti-war coalition,” warns The Intercept’s Glenn Greenwald, remains “no match for the war machine composed of the establishment wings of both parties.”

      • What Do Russian Analysts Make of the Charge Moscow Offered Taliban Bounties on US Troops?

        The history of outside forces helping wage war within Afghanistan—including the U.S. establishment of the mujahideen forces to fight the Russians in the 1980s—is a bloody history indeeed.

      • The Corruption of the Democratic Party: Talking to Ted Rall about his new book

        Seven Stories Press just released Ted Rall’s new book, “Political Suicide: The Fight for the Soul of the Democratic Party.” Rall is a graphic novelist, a syndicated columnist and the author of many books of art and prose, including biographies of Edward Snowden, Bernie Sanders and Pope Francis. You’ve probably seen his political cartoons, which are often published in urban weeklies.

      • ‘This Is Horrendous’: US Military Confirms Bayonets Were Issued to Troops Responding to George Floyd Protests

        “It is insane to issue bayonets to soldiers for crowd control.”

      • The War on Kitsch

        With all the talk of meddling in U. S. elections and bounties on U.S. soldiers, it’s no small wonder that a Russian named Berlin can still claim to have composed this nation’s best-loved song. Born in the Russian Empire in 1888, the immigrant Irving Berlin wrote both the words and the music to “God Bless America.” This hymn will be heard on the 40th edition of a Capitol Fourth, the Independence Day concert that has for the past thirty-nine years taken place on the West Lawn of the White House. This time around, Covid has thwarted the full display of military pomp that Trump had promised the beleaguered country.

      • Black Lives and the Fourth of July

        On June 19, 1865, the news of emancipation finally reached Galveston, Texas. On that day, the crack of the master’s whip would no longer be sanctioned by the laws of the United States. Exercising the powers vested in him by President Lincoln, Maj. Gen. Gordon Granger, along with more than 1,800 federal troops, marched into Galveston to announce General Order Number 3. Addressed to the “The people of Texas,” the order set out Granger’s task: to enforce the Emancipation Proclamation of 1863.

      • The Desire to Kill

        They don’t know how to stop. They just don’t know how. It doesn’t matter how many people march in how many cities calling for the police to stop killing people, they don’t stop.

      • Protesters Attacked by Police Are Suing to Vindicate Their Constitutional Rights

        Protesters demonstrating against white supremacy and police brutality in the wake of George Floyd’s public lynching have been met with illegal repression by law enforcement. Police have utilized toxic chemical and sonic weapons, dangerous projectiles, intrusive surveillance, physical violence and “kettling” to trap demonstrators after dispersal orders are given.

      • The US Military Has Its Knee on the Throat of the World

        The 2021 Defense Budget is making its way through Congress. The annual drama of this event has always been of particular interest to residents of the north Pacific Coast, as the US Navy’s nursery lies only twelve miles off our coast. This is where many of the weapons purchased by Congress take their first baby steps of testing and training before deployment. As a requirement for approval of the Navy’s Environmental Impact Statement regarding these exercises, the Navy must consult us every few years. This opportunity to confront Navy personnel has provided an opportunity to become acquainted with the environmental effects of these weapons, and, just as importantly, the menace their ever-increasing lethality constitutes for life on earth.

      • White Nationalists on the Attack

        On Monday, June 22nd, Pvt. Ethan P. Melzer, 22, was charged with planning an ambush of members of his unit during an upcoming deployment with the help of an “occult-based neo-Nazi” group known as the “Order of the Nine Angles” and a related group known as the “RapeWaffen Division.”

      • When Rogue States Sanction the International Criminal Court

        Even Orwell would be at a loss to make sense of some of the recent antics of leading governments. We would expect Orwell to be out-satirized by the American actions to impose penalties and sanctions on officials of the International Criminal Court, not because they are accused of acting improperly or seem guilty of some kind of corruption or malfeasance, but because they were doing their appointed jobs carefully, yet fearlessly.

      • Tearing Down the Idols of Colonialism: Why Tunisia, Africa Must Demand French Apology

        The visit by newly-elected Tunisian President Kais Saied to France on June 22 was intended to discuss bilateral relations, trade, etc. But it was also a missed opportunity, where Tunisia could have formally demanded an apology from France for the decades of French colonialism, which has shattered the social and political fabric of this North African Arab nation since the late 19th century.

      • Roaming Charges: Mutiny of the Bounties!

        + If I recall, there were serious discussions inside the White House about turning the Afghan War into a bounty hunting operation led by mercenaries on contract with Erik Prince. I’m pretty sure many elements of that scheme have been in place since 1979 at the beginning Carter’s secret war and have continued in one way or another over the last 40 years.

      • Connecting the Dates – US Media Used To Stop The ‘Threat’ of Peace

        This is not a column defending Donald Trump.

      • In the Name of Anti-Trumpism, Media Elevate a Lying Warmonger

        Opposing the current president is a worthy goal for anyone who wants a better world. But if that opposition is based on TV ratings and ad sales, then it is just as morally bankrupt as the president himself.

      • The Racist Counter-Revolution of 1776
      • Militants using mosques, a serious dimension in Kashmir: Spl DG CRPF

        Asked how the civilian got killed, he said that they found two magazines in the mosque. “The elderly man got killed in the firing from the mosque. We are technically clear that the bullet was fired from the mosque that hit the civilian in his back. I have personally visited the spot, met people and checked the camera. It is beyond doubt that the civilian was killed by militant fire,” he said.

    • Environment

      • Why We Need a Global Green New Deal Right Now

        The rules of the global economy got us into this mess. But rules can change.

      • Energy

      • Wildlife/Nature

        • Sorry Secretary Perdue, Our National Forests are Not Crops

          Trump’s Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue flew into Missoula on June 12 to sign a memorandum directing the U.S. Forest Service to essentially double-down on its continued push to prioritize logging, mining, drilling and grazing, all while limiting environmental reviews. During the campaign-style signing event, Secretary Perdue—a former agribusiness CEO whose previous political campaigns were bankrolled by Monsanto and Big Ag interests—not only bragged that “we see trees as a crop,” but also ironically compared America’s bedrock environmental laws to “bubble wrap.” Apparently it was lost on Secretary Perdue that bubble wrap protects valuable things from being destroyed.

        • The Upper Green River Should be a National Park, Not a Feedlot

          A recent article in Wyofile by Angus Thuermer was full of quotes from the ranchers grazing the Upper Green River allotment on the Bridger Teton National Forest in Wyoming.

        • In Reconsidering ‘Normalcy’ Genetically Engineered Trees Do Not Belong

          The global pandemic of Covid-19 has challenged the notion of business as usual and exposed a systemic crisis rooted in capitalism and the neoliberal economic model. The pandemic has proliferated in unpredictable numbers, killing thousands in a flash and spreading unhesitatingly beyond borders and boundaries. Millions of people are unemployed and in need of food, medicine and other basic necessities as a result of the collapse of an economic system already stacked against them. On all fronts we are in a physical, mental and spiritual crisis.

    • Finance

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • Don’t Let the Corruption of the Powerless Bring Down the Democrats

        In politics, moral purity is just a fashionable way of being morally indifferent.

      • Barbara Lee Would Make a Great Vice Presidential Nominee

        Barbara Lee participated in her first Democratic National Convention in 1972, as a delegate supporting Shirley Chisholm’s groundbreaking bid for the presidency. Chisholm, the first Black woman elected to Congress, mounted a militant anti-war campaign that stressed the need for economic, social, and racial justice. With limited resources and in the face of skeptical media, she said her bid was all about “sheer will and refusal to accept the status quo.” Chisholm told Lee, “These rules, these laws inside were not made for you, they weren’t made for me. So you’ve got to get in there and shake things up.’”

      • The Data is Clear: Progressives Should Boycott Biden

        Once again the Democratic Party is asking progressives to vote for a presidential nominee who says he disagrees with them about every major issue. This is presented as an offer they cannot refuse. If they cast a protest vote for a third-party candidate like the unionist and environmentalist Howie Hawkins of the Greens or stay home on that key Tuesday in November, Donald Trump will win a second term—which would be worse than Biden’s first.

      • This Fourth of July, Time To Tell the Truth About the Confederacy and Its Symbols

        The decision to retire the Mississippi state flag is not erasing history, it is telling the truth about it.

      • Imagining a New Mount Rushmore

        The news that President Trump is planning to stage a “massive fireworks display” before a sizable crowd on Independence Day eve at the Mount Rushmore National Memorial (notwithstanding the prospect of both wildfires in the tinder-dry surroundings and the further spread of Covid-19) has left me mulling over once again the possible creation of another such epic-scale monument. Maybe it could even be incised into a nearby ridge in the same Black Hills area of South Dakota as the original, if the Lakota Sioux could be convinced to allow it, which they certainly didn’t the first time around.

      • ‘An Attack on Indigenous People’: Mount Rushmore Trump Event Denounced as Racist, Dangerous, and Disrespectful

        “We won’t be social distancing,” said the South Dakota governor. 

      • Trump’s Mount Rushmore Event Denounced as Racist, Dangerous and Disrespectful

        President Donald Trump’s planned July 3 fireworks ceremony at Mount Rushmore is facing sustained criticism over its risks to public health and the environment and is being rebuked as “an attack on Indigenous people.”

      • Trump’s Record on Foreign Policy: Lost Wars, New Conflicts and Broken Promises

        On June 13, President Donald Trump told the graduating class at West Point, “We are ending the era of endless wars.” That is what Trump has promised since 2016, but the “endless” wars have not ended. Trump has dropped more bombs and missiles than George W. Bush or Barack Obama did in their first terms, and there are still roughly as many US bases and troops overseas as when he was elected.

      • Give Me Liberty,  Give You Death

        So, here we are again at the granddaddy of all of the official U.S. celebrations of militarism and white power.  Only the hard won observances of Labor Day and MLK’s birthday are exceptions.

      • Drawn Away from Reality in Plain View

        In May 2017 President Trump tweeted “Despite the constant negative press covfefe.” That garbled nonsense received 21, 663 Likes. In the throes of this Covid-19 pandemic, social media has posted false attacks on what the NIH prescribes.

      • Electionland 2020: Florida Felons Case, Drive-Thru Voting, Voter Registration and More
      • Tweet, Donny, Tweet!
      • Sergei Khrushchev: An Eulogy from His Close Student

        Sergei Khrushchev, son of former USSR premier, Nikita Khrushchev, who relocated to the United States after the USSR collapsed and became a professor of international relations at Brown University, died several days ago at the age of 84. Mr. Khrushchev died from a gunshot to his head. The Rhode Island police that came to his home in Cranston, following a call by his wife, ruled out foul play.

      • A Russian Bounty Is Bad. What’s Shocking and Outrageous Is the War.

        For coalition forces in Afghanistan, it’s always been hard to tell who’s shooting at them. In two decades of war, the US military and its allies have battled Al Qaeda, the Taliban, the Haqqani Network, Hezb-e Islami Gulbuddin, Lashkar-e-Taiba, and the Islamic State, to name a few groups. Tribal warlords, sometimes friend and sometimes foe, control small armies. Some former militant leaders have ascended to powerful positions in the Afghan government, leaving coalition intelligence puzzling at those leaders’ enduring ties to combatants. Foreign interference and aid to insurgents, especially from Iran and Pakistan, is commonplace; reports that Russia may be arming the Taliban came not last week but in early 2018.

      • In ‘Russian Bounty’ Story, Evidence-Free Claims From Nameless Spies Became Fact Overnight

        Based upon a bombshell New York Times report (6/26/20), virtually the entire media landscape has been engulfed in the allegations that Russia is paying Taliban fighters bounties to kill US soldiers.

      • Ha Ha: Rotten to the Core
      • American Dreamers
      • ‘Trump Death Clock’ Headed to DC on July 4th to Highlight President’s Horrific Pandemic Response

        “This suffering cannot be forgotten.”

      • ‘Liberate Hong Kong, revolution of our times’ – a legacy from the intellectual history of Republican China

        Crafted in 2016 by Edward Leung Tin-kei, the helmsman of the local Hong Kong Indigenous movement, these eight characters conjured anxiety and anger from local authorities and Beijing. The slogan was officially denounced by Carrie Lam, the Chief Executive of Hong Kong, on August 5 and was the target of fierce critiques from official media outlets such as the Global Times, whose attack was published under the signature of its chief editorialist Hu Xijin.

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • European Joint Action on Disinformation

        It is essential to define clearly what we mean about disinformation. Without this, fight against disinformation—especially during state of emergency—can effectively lead to censorship (see for instance Hungary). Freedom of expression is applicable not only to “information” or “ideas” that are favorably received or regarded as inoffensive or as a matter of indifference. We need to make clear that in case of disinformation, there’s an intention to deceive, cause public harm, or make economic gain.

        We also need to define who can decide on the authenticity, accuracy, or authoritative nature of the content. So far, instead of legislation, we relied on industry self-regulation at European level (Code of conduct on disinformation). Private companies were tasked to arbitrate on free speech matters and urged to monitor their platforms for suspicious activity. This can have a negative impact on public debate, if there’s no remedy available for those whose content is mislabeled. Unfortunately—despite several criticism—this wasn’t corrected by the Commission, instead they encourage new companies to join the Code of Conduct.

      • China censor accused of ‘symbolically erasing’ Tibet by refusing to publish upcoming memoir

        An author forced to change printers at the last minute says taking out two words the Chinese censor refused to print would have been a travesty.

        Sydney-based author Miro Bilbrough’s​ upcoming memoir, In the Time of the Manaroans, due to be printed in China before the words “Tibetan Buddhism,” were requested to be removed from the manuscript.

        Bilbrough, who grew up in New Zealand, said leaving the words in the book was “non-negotiable”.

        She said China had overt, geo-political views about Tibet, by not recognising it as a country.

      • Goodbye to the Wild Wild Web

        Taken independently, these changes might have felt incremental and isolated — the kind of refereeing and line-drawing that happens every day on social media.

        But arriving all at once, they felt like something much bigger: a sign that the Wild Wild Web — the tech industry’s decade-long experiment in unregulated growth and laissez-faire platform governance — is coming to an end. In its place, a new culture is taking shape that is more accountable, more self-aware and less willfully naïve than the one that came before it.

    • Freedom of Information/Freedom of the Press

      • Turkish court opens trial of Saudi officials in absentia over death of journalist Jamal Khashoggi

        A Turkish court will open the trial on Friday of 20 Saudi officials indicted over the 2018 killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, a step his fiancee hopes will shed more light on the death and reveal where his body was hidden.

      • Don’t Extradite Assange: Open Letter

        3 July 2020

      • 40+ Rights Groups Call on UK to Free Julian Assange

        WikiLeaks publisher turns 49 in prison, facing U.S. extradition

      • The real war against the press: Julian Assange as public enemy number one

        We at DiEM25 see Julian’s trial not only as a free press issue, but more importantly as a human rights concern.

        To lock away a journalist for exposing secrets defines authoritarianism. Recent events have showcased the increasing deterioration of our democratic institutions. This year’s COVID-19 pandemic, and documented accounts of police brutality worldwide have shed light on the disregard of many ‘democratic’ governments for their own citizens’ lives.

        We need to protect people like Julian Assange now more than ever. Whistleblowers ensure the functioning of our democracies by revealing what is being done by governments in the name of citizens.

        As a movement committed to the belief that transparency makes strong democracies, we stand with and will fight for Julian, WikiLeaks, and the free press.

      • 40 rights groups call for Assange’s immediate release

        Dozens of press freedom, human rights and privacy rights organisations across five continents have co-signed an open letter to the UK Government calling for the immediate release from prison of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.

        The Australian, who is 49 on Friday, is being held in Belmarsh Prison in London, facing extradition to the United States.

        He has been indicted under the Espionage Act.

        The co-signers write: “This (indictment) is an unprecedented escalation of an already disturbing assault on journalism in the US, where President Donald Trump has referred to the news media as the ‘enemy of the people’.

      • Morocco Asks Amnesty for Proof It Used Spyware on Journalist

        Amnesty said in June the Moroccan authorities used software developed by Israeli security firm NSO to insert spyware onto the cellphone of Omar Radi, a journalist convicted in March over a social media post.

        The Pegasus software can switch on the phone’s camera and microphone as well as access data.

        If the international watchdog fails to provide evidence, the kingdom “will take the necessary steps to defend its national security” and “clear up public opinion” on the allegations, Prime Minister Saad-Eddine El Othmani said in a statement carried by the Moroccan Press Agency on Thursday.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • Civil Rights Groups Sue NC City Over Law That ‘Effectively Bans Any Protest’

        Ordinance in city of Graham “sends a clear message that racist monuments are valued more highly than Black lives and our constitutional rights.”

      • ‘Money Changes Everything’: Corporate Sponsors Finally Join Native American Call for Washington Redskins Name Change

        Investor coalition worth $620 billion pushed FedEx, Pepsi, and Nike to change stance, prompting team owner to announce a review of the name.

      • Let’s Not Lose Momentum

        As the righteous rage of George Floyd’s murder at the hands of the Minneapolis Police continues to simmer, marches and other displays of solidarity have spread to places where it is least expected. Small, majority-white towns, typically considered antithetical to diversity and radical politics, are holding their own protests and calling for meaningful action against police brutality and systemic racism. Some smaller, liberal cities predictably showed up; however, collective action can be seen in even unlikelier places — places like the 24,000 person town of Norfolk Nebraska, or my own hometown of Casper, Wyoming – which is in the least inhabited state, and likely one of the most conservative, in the country.

      • 51 Years After Stonewall, New York’s Queer Liberation March Faces Police Violence

        At about 4:30 pm on Sunday, June 28, I was both elated and exhausted. After marching for two and a half miles as a lead organizer of the Queer Liberation March for Black Lives and Against Police Brutality, I had taken a short break to rest and replenish near our end point, Washington Square Park. But now I was ready to go back into the post-march celebration in the center of the park. I saw in the distance that there seemed to be a commotion at the north end of the park, near the Washington Square Arch, and started to walk toward it. On my way, I ran into my friend Liz, who told me that the NYPD had pepper-sprayed the tail end of our march and that Sasha Alexander of Black Trans Media, who was running the post-march speak-out at the small stone stage in the middle of the park, had successfully implored the White people viewing the speak-out to form a barrier around the perimeter of the area to protect the Black and Brown and Trans folks speaking and watching. I glanced over at the stage area and saw the line of White faces lined up facing any danger that might be on its way and felt proud to be among these people. Then I headed to the arch. Soon, I saw people on the ground trying to flush their eyes out and ran into my friend Dinetta, who gave me more details on the police’s actions: She had seen cops ramming into protesters with their motor scooters, unleashing pepper spray on the crowd and intentionally escalating tensions. How had we gotten here?

      • How to Do Things With Theses: Chile’s National Police Force Sues the Feminist Artistic Collective, Las Tesis

        Chile’s national police force, the Carabineros de Chile, have filed a legal suit against the feminist artistic collective Las Tesis for allegedly inciting violence against the police. In doing so, the Carabineros have lain bare the mechanisms by which the violence of Chile’s patriarchal rapist state is entrenched and institutionalized, conjuring an insidious through-line connecting the censorship and violence of the country’s civic-military dictatorship (1973-1990) to the struggles against police brutality in Chile—and much of the world—today.

      • Policing is Not a Public Good

        For decades, we’ve been told that policing is a public good: available to all, for the benefit of all. But in practice, that’s never been true.

      • Challenging the French Republic’s Color-Blindness

        George Floyd’s killing by a policeman in Minneapolis reverberated across the world in an unprecedented fashion. On all continents, young people took to the streets to pay tribute to Floyd. They protested against police brutality which they regarded as ‘systemic’. Citizens expressed their anger at the racial profiling of Black people by the police.

      • Why are Certain Christians Democratic and Others Authoritarian?

        Why are certain Christians democratic and other Christians authoritarian, yet both profess belief in the same Bible and God? Why do some Christians emphasize personal authenticity and others biblical authority? Why do certain Christians want to empower people, and other Christians want to gain power over people? Why do some Christians believe that the goal of faith is human solidarity with people in this life, while others preach that the goal is individual salvation in an afterlife? Not that Christians are either democratic or authoritarian; but one of these two personality tendencies often dominates and determines which passages of the Bible will be underlined and which will be sidelined.

      • July Fourth Never Meant Anything to a Disabled Black Woman Like Me

        The Fourth of July has never meant much to me or my family. It was just a day that started at 7 a.m. with my mother at my door, blasting gospel music and telling me to get to work cleaning my room, “now that I had the time.” At best, it meant I got barbecue and went outside to watch my neighbors set off fireworks, just in case they accidentally set our house on fire.

      • Politicians of Color Should Not Be Immune From Criticism

        As progressives in a country with a long, grim history of racism continuing to the present day, it’s our responsibility to fight racism everywhere we see it.

      • Politicians of Color Should Not be Immune From Criticism

        To me, being an anti-racist activist means that one consistently challenges the structures of racist exclusion, exploitation, repression and incarceration

      • Attack, Deny

        Deniability only is as good as credibility.

      • My Adventures in the Matriarchy

        I’m not talking about a fairytale matriarchy from long ago and far away. I’m talking about a matriarchy here and now in northern California. I live in one, though I imagine that some might say that it’s not a true matriarchy. Maybe not, but as far as I’m concerned it’s as close to a true matriarchy as I’m likely to get in my own life, unless I move to China and live among the Mosuo women who practice Tibetan Buddhism or to Indonesia and live with the Minangkabau women.

      • Smearing Black Lives Matter…From the Left

        Over the past fifty-three years as a socialist, I have seen repeated calls for purifying the left of capitalist influences, both governmental and corporate. The latest flare-up was a Jacobin article titled “Don’t Let Blackwashing Save the Investor Class” by Cedric Johnson, a black African American studies professor. Just as Deep Throat advised Bob Woodward in “All the President’s Men,” Johnson followed the money:

      • A Requiem for George Floyd

        Exactly a month after George Floyd’s death, driving along Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood, ‘Black Lives Matter’ tags have converted the plywood board-ups that line the street into a tapestry that establishes a rhythmic mantra – proclaiming a society of equality and justice. Approaching Crescent Heights Boulevard, the currently closed Laugh Factory is covered with images of George Floyd as though he were the featured stand-up comedian at the club. Floyd, however, achieved his eight minutes, forty-six seconds of fame with his neck pinned to the ground by a white police officer’s knee. His life was unregarded and his potential death, as his last moments ebbed away, entirely ungrieved by his assailant.

      • Class, Race and Power

        Since the onset of the Great Recession, a debate has persisted over creating what is described— depending on one’s premises, as either a trans-ideological working class movement or a red-brown alliance of socialists with fascists. ‘Socialist’ in this configuration is a classless movement that maps quite remarkably to the base of the Democratic Party. It is a mix of the right-thinking rich, the PMC and the slivers of working class and poor whose historical oppression threatens the rule of capital if not managed through social divisions and symbolic acts. Class here is a proxy for one’s social utility in a self-organized system of capitalist employment.

      • The NYPD Isn’t Giving Critical Bodycam Footage to Officials Investigating Alleged Abuse

        Like many cities, New York City began equipping its police officers with body-worn cameras a few years ago. The footage is often invaluable evidence for the civilian agency charged with investigating complaints about NYPD abuses.

        But first, the agency’s investigators need to get the footage. And increasingly, the NYPD is not turning it over.

      • How to Protect Yourself From Retaliation When Filming Police Brutality

        As protesters continue to occupy the streets around the U.S., many are filming police brutality. If you are in a situation with the cops or witnessing one that has the potential to turn violent, whether at a protest or simply while out in your community, you should be prepared to take video and document events with your smartphone. While taking a video isn’t that difficult — we do it every day — recording police brutality or other atrocities comes with a whole set of concerns that many of us don’t have to face on a daily basis.

      • “America’s Moment of Reckoning”: Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor & Cornel West on Uprising Against Racism

        Scholars Cornel West and Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor respond to the global uprising against racism and police violence following the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis. “We’re seeing the convergence of a class rebellion with racism and racial terrorism at the center of it,” said Princeton professor Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor. “And in many ways, we are in uncharted territory in the United States.”

      • A Bridge Too Far

        The murder of black people has been a constant in American barbarity since Colonial times.  Persistent white murder has caused black agony to erupt in spasms of despair that have only altered its methods, not ended it.  White racism, officially supported, has suppressed black outrage but not stifled it.  Whites continue to murder blacks but cannot murder black spirit.

      • A Modest Proposal for Compromise on “Confederate” Military Bases

        In July 1864, Confederate forces led by General Jubal Early attacked Fort Stevens and Fort DeRussy on the outskirts of Washington, DC. Union forces drove them away after two days of skirmishes, but the battle threw a scare into the capital city and constituted a high point in the Confederacy’s Shenandoah Valley campaigns.

      • The Nation’s First Reparations Package to Survivors of Police Torture Included a Public Memorial. Survivors Are Still Waiting.

        It took some time for Vincent Wade-Robinson to come around to the idea of having his name inscribed on a memorial. His experience had been painful. He didn’t want to dwell upon it.

        “How can you describe torture?” he asked me. “Every day I look in the mirror I have that scar across my nose. That’s my reminder of what happened to me.”

      • Police and the Wealth of Nations: Déjà Vu or Unfinished Business?

        My idea is to understand police violence and private property by taking a historical look at their relationship, and the year 1776, if not July 4, is a crucial part of it as we shall see. It might help us understand “looting” and “police reform.”[1] Is the 2020 George Floyd uprising a kind of déjà vu?

      • Angela Davis on Abolition, Calls to Defund Police, Toppled Racist Statues & Voting in 2020 Election

        Amid a worldwide uprising against police brutality and racism, we discuss the historic moment with legendary scholar and activist Angela Davis. She also responds to the destruction and removal of racist monuments in cities across the United States, and the 2020 election.

      • “What to the Slave Is the 4th of July?”: James Earl Jones Reads Frederick Douglass’s Historic Speech

        In a Fourth of July holiday special, we hear the words of Frederick Douglass. Born into slavery around 1818, Douglass became a key leader of the abolitionist movement. On July 5, 1852, in Rochester, New York, he gave one of his most famous speeches, “The Meaning of July Fourth for the Negro.” He was addressing the Rochester Ladies’ Anti-Slavery Society. This is actor James Earl Jones reading the speech during a performance of historian Howard Zinn’s acclaimed book, “Voices of a People’s History of the United States.” He was introduced by Zinn.

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

      • The Internet “Just Works”: The EARN IT Act Threatens That and More

        Unfortunately, the problems with the EARN IT Act overshadow its good intentions. Insufficient protections for encryption threaten to make all users more vulnerable to the crime it is trying to address. It also puts the digital economy at risk by taking away a key feature that has been essential for the Internet’s success: liability protection.

        Although an amendment was added to the bill to provide protections for encryption, they are far from powerful enough. The protections from the amendment would be tested in state courts across the country, leaving strong encryption on unstable ground. Companies will face a choice, risk their future by implementing end-to-end encryption when it is unclear what the future holds for the legality of the technology in any of the states they operate in, or not take the risk and use less secure encryption. In an uncertain legal environment, companies will refrain from implementing end-to-end encryption, leaving all of us less safe.

    • Monopolies

      • Jessica González on Facebook’s Promotion of Hate
      • Originality’s Other Path

        Although the U.S. Supreme Court has famously spoken of a “historic kinship” between patent and copyright doctrine, the family resemblance is sometimes hard to see. One of the biggest differences between them today is how much ingenuity they require for earning protection. Obtaining a patent requires an invention so innovative that it would not have been obvious to a person having ordinary skill in the art. Copyright, by contrast, makes no such demand on authors, requiring an original work of only minimal creativity.

        Except sometimes it doesn’t. Puzzlingly, in some copyright cases dealing with musical arrangements, courts have demanded a patent-like level of creativity from putative authors. While these cases might seem like outliers, they have a pedigree that is both lengthy and largely unrecognized. The proposition that copyright originality should require patent-style inventiveness beyond artisans’ everyday creations goes back all the way to an 1850 music-infringement decision by Justice Samuel Nelson. In fact, only four months later, Nelson himself would author the Supreme Court patent opinion that is now credited as the touchstone for patent law’s own nonobviousness doctrine. His corresponding vision for copyright, though, came first.

        Drawing on original archival research, this Article challenges the standard account of what originality doctrine is and what courts can do with it. It identifies Nelson’s forgotten copyright legacy: a still-growing line of cases that treats music differently, sometimes even more analogous to patentable inventions than to other authorial works. These decisions seem to function as a hidden enclave within originality’s larger domain, playing by rules that others couldn’t get away with. They form originality’s other path, much less trod than the familiar one but with a doctrinal story of its own to tell. Originality and nonobviousness’s parallel beginnings reveal a period of leaky boundaries between copyright and patent, when many of the Justices considered a rule for one to be just as good for the other. Their recurring intersections, meanwhile, muddy today’s conventional narrative about copyright’s historic commitment to protecting even the most modestly creative works.

      • Patents

        • WIPO’s Role in Procedural and Substantive Patent Law Harmonization

          This Chapter, part of a book examining the history of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), focuses on WIPO’s activities in the patent realm. The Chapter begins with a description of the successful procedural initiatives undertaken by WIPO and its administrative predecessor, the United International Bureaux for the Protection of Intellectual Property (BIRPI), notably the development of the Patent Cooperation Treaty, the Strasbourg Agreement, the Budapest Treaty, and the Patent Law Treaty (PLT). It then considers the less successful substantive efforts of WIPO and BIRPI to raise the level of patent protection, notably through the failed attempt to revise the Paris Convention in the 1980s and, later, in negotiations over a Substantive Patent Law Treaty. We argue the lesson to be learned is that when a regime governs a single area of law (in this case, intellectual property), especially one that is closely tied to health, safety and economic growth, it is not possible to achieve substantive gains without giving due consideration to the interests of all relevant parties. We end more optimistically by asking whether recent developments provide the basis for a renewed attempt to craft a better harmonized normative framework. In addition to the effort to raise substantive standards, these include an interest in procedural mechanisms to facilitate transnational litigation involving intellectual property rights, concerns about the adequacy of defenses and limitations, and a desire to recognize new kinds of intellectual contributions, such as traditional knowledge and genetic resources.

        • From the PHOSITA to the MOSITA – Will ‘Secondary Considerations’ Save Pharmaceutical Patents From Artificial Intelligence?

          Artificial intelligence systems are being increasingly employed in pharmaceutical R&D to develop new drugs and medical treatments. In such a scenario, the patentability of new pharmaceutical inventions seems more and more problematic, given that the computational power of AIs increases the likelihood that a new chemical composition is deemed to be obvious. In this article I argue that with the advent of AI- generated inventions both EU and US patent law cannot rely exclusively on the traditional standard of the “person having ordinary skill in the art” to evaluate the non-obviousness condition of patentability. However, I also maintain that a legislative reform is not necessary. Rather, the judges should start to more strongly consider the so-called “secondary considerations” of non-obviousness that have been intermittently and inconsistently applied both in US and EU case-law.

        • Fortress Gets U.S. Backing in Apple Patent ‘Puppeteering’ Suit

          The Trump administration will join Fortress Investment Group in court Thursday in an antitrust fight with Apple Inc. and Intel Corp. with billions of dollars in patent royalties at stake.

          The U.S. Justice Department threw its weight behind the fund manager owned by Japan’s SoftBank Group Corp., which is asking a judge to throw out a lawsuit by the two Silicon Valley heavyweights accusing Fortress of bombarding them with frivolous patent-infringement claims and aggressive payment demands.

          The case tests Apple and Intel’s argument that Fortress is acting anti-competitively by stockpiling patents to target others with infringement litigation. Similar legal…

        • Software Patents

          • Apple has been granted a patent for software that would allow for socially distant group selfies

            With people around the world self-isolating at home in order to curb the spread of Covid-19, Apple has received a patent for software that would allow people to take group selfies while socially distancing from one another.

            The US Patent and Trademark Office recently granted Apple a patent for the software that would allow for “synthetic group selfies,” or socially distant group selfies.
            The software would allow a user to invite others to participate in a group selfie that would arrange multiple people into a single image. It would remove the background image from other users’ selfies and place them into the user’s photo.

          • Apple Gets Green Light in Validity Challenges to Mobile Patent

            Apple Inc. will have a chance to convince the Patent Trial and Appeal Board that a mobile network patent was too obvious to get intellectual property protection, the tribunal determined in granting two validity trials.

            Apple is trying to knock out mobile software company Seven Networks’ 10,110,534 patent by arguing that its claims are obvious in light of prior inventions. The patent involves mobile network connection architecture.

      • Copyrights

        • Swedish ISP Loses Appeal Over ‘Dynamic’ Pirate Bay Blockade

          Internet provider Telia must block The Pirate Bay, a local court has decided on appeal. The order, which was requested by copyright holders including several prominent Hollywood studios, also requires the ISP to prevent customers from accessing Dreamfilm, FMovies, and NyaFilmer. It’s not clear whether Telia plans any further appeals.

        • Swedish Patent and Market Court upholds Sweden’s first dynamic blocking injunction

          The applicant rightholders (Disney, Universal Studios, Warner Bros, and several others) claimed that Telia – by supplying internet connection to its own customers (thus enabling access to the sites at issue) – was aiding and abetting (objectively) infringements of copyrights belonging to the claimants. The request for dynamic blocking injunction was made in accordance with §53B (first sentence) of the Swedish Act on Copyright in Literary and Artistic Works (1960:729) (the Copyright Act).

          In late 2018, the Patent and Market Court ordered Telia – by way of an interim ruling – to block access to the above-mentioned sites by means of a dynamic blocking injunction [commented on The IPKat here, here and here].

          Telia appealed the ruling to the Swedish Patent and Market Court of Appeal, which confirmed the findings in a decision (available in Swedish) issued earlier this week.

        • When does a communication to the public under EU copyright law need to be to a ‘new public’? A new research article

          Over the past several years, the right of communication to the public in art. 3(1) of the InfoSoc Directive has progressively and consistently taken centre stage in the EU copyright system. This has been so also given the great number of referrals (over twenty since the 2006 decision in SGAE) to the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU).

          EU law does not define the concept of ‘communication to the public’. Lacking a definition, the CJEU has sought to determine the meaning and scope thereof in light of the objectives pursued by the InfoSoc Directive, notably that of ensuring a high level of protection of intellectual property (recital 24). Like the other economic rights harmonised in the InfoSoc Directive, the right of communication to the public “should be understood in a broad sense” (recital 23).

          The two key requirements of art. 3(1) of the InfoSoc Directive are a ‘communication’ directed at a ‘public’. A simple example might be a free-to-air broadcast: the broadcast is an act of communication and it is to the public, because any member of the public with a suitable device can receive the signal and watch/listen to the broadcast. But what if the broadcaster operated online and made available works previously communicated online by the relevant rightholder? Would that activity require a licence?


          The one suggested is a solution that is readily implementable without the need to ‘depart’ from earlier case law. It also allows a more streamlined reasoning on the side of the CJEU, which is respectful of the language, content, and aims of both international and EU law provisions. Although the analysis mostly focuses on the case law issued in respect of art. 3(1) of the InfoSoc Directive, the findings are generally applicable to the various rights of communication/making available to the public and public performance under EU and national law, including inter alia the Rental and Lending Rights Directive and the recently adopted DSM Directive.

          In sum, the elusive ‘new public’ concept that has dominated CJEU case law on communication to the public since 2006 may not be as key as the Court has instead considered and conveyed it to be.

        • YouTube Hit With Class Action Lawsuit Over Copyright Enforcement, Repeat Infringer Policy

          Maria Schneider has filed a class action lawsuit against YouTube, claiming massive deficiencies in its copyright enforcement measures. The Grammy award-winning musician says YouTube restricts access to its takedown tools, profits from infingement, and fails to terminate repeat infringers.


Links 4/7/2020: Grml 2020.06 and diffoscope 150 Released

Posted in News Roundup at 8:38 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • Linux-driven Comet Lake laptop offers security features and dual 4K display support

        Purism’s 14-inch, $1,199 and up “Librem 14” laptop runs the Linux-based, security-enhanced PureOS on a hexa-core Comet Lake-S and offers dual NVMe-ready M.2 slots plus dual 4K displays via HDMI and DP/USB Type-C.

        Purism has replaced its earlier, 13-inch Librem 13 laptop with a 14-inch Librem 14 model. Thanks to a smaller bezel, the 322 x 220 x 17mm laptop has a nearly identical form factor. The system is available for pre-order starting at $1,199 early bird pricing, with shipments due in early Q4 2020.

      • Librem Mini Shipping with Active Cooling

        There’s nothing like making a public announcement to ensure that a situation will change. That’s certainly been true in the case of our Librem Mini. Just over a week ago we announced the Librem Mini was ready to ship and highlighted one issue we intended to solve with a future software update…

        Well it turns out that while we were contacting all of the Mini customers to determine whether they wanted their Mini immediately, or whether they wanted to wait for a firmware update, we resolved the fan speed control issue! As we ship out all of the Librem Mini orders, they will all have fully-updated firmware and active cooling.

      • This 15.6 inch Linux laptop features an AMD Ryzen processor

        Enter the Tongfang PF5PU1G. It’s a 15.6 inch laptop with an AMD Ryzen 5 3500U processor and Radon Vega 8 graphics. The notebook is available from Laptop with Linux for €769 ($865) and up.

    • Server

      • Demystifying Kubeflow pipelines: Data science workflows on Kubernetes – Part 1

        Kubeflow Pipelines are a great way to build portable, scalable machine learning workflows. It is one part of a larger Kubeflow ecosystem that aims to reduce the complexity and time involved with training and deploying machine learning models at scale.

        In this blog series, we demystify Kubeflow pipelines and showcase this method to produce reusable and reproducible data science.

        We go over why Kubeflow brings the right standardization to data science workflows, followed by how this can be achieved through Kubeflow pipelines.

        In part 2, we will get our hands dirty! We’ll make use of the Fashion MNIST dataset and the Basic classification with Tensorflow example, and take a step-by-step approach to turn the example model into a Kubeflow pipeline so that you can do the same.

      • Why Docker?

        Before discussing Docker, it is important for you to understand what microservices are. Consider a very large application that is broken down into smaller services. Each of those services can be termed as microservices. Microservices are small processes that communicate with each other over a network. For example, consider an online shopping application that can be broken down into smaller microservices, such as the user-accounts service, product catalog, order server, and shopping cart server.


        Docker resolves this inefficiency problem by running several microservices in the same VM through running various containers for each microservice. Docker is an open-source application that helps you create, deploy, and run applications with the help of a container. Docker containers are small and lightweight VM alternatives that use the host operating system and use up relatively fewer resources.

        To understand Docker, first, you must understand what is the problem statement that Docker is trying to resolve. Here, the problem is that after designing a project, it might run perfectly fine on your system initially, but has trouble opening on other systems and servers. As soon as you move the project to the production stage, on someone else’s computer or on some other server, the project does not show the same level of performance, same level of working, or same optimization, even when you move that project from one place to another.

        For example, when you develop a website by using ASP.net or PHP, and you work on it and move the project to the web server, there are some uncertainties that could occur. This includes images not properly loading, or perhaps a bit difference or glitch in the path. On the developer’s machine, everything may work perfectly, but it might not work the same when moved to another machine.

    • Intel

      • Intel Compute Runtime Update Adds OpenCL + oneAPI Level Zero For DG1

        Intel’s open-source Compute Runtime stack for providing OpenCL and oneAPI Level Zero support for their graphics hardware has now rolled out support for the DG1 Xe discrete graphics card.

        Building off the DG1 support that has materialized for the Linux kernel and other components, most recently the IGC graphics compiler now supporting DG1, today’s release of the Intel Compute Runtime has DG1 support in place.

      • Google testing native Steam client on Chromebooks powered by 10th generation Intel CPUs

        Chrome OS, Google’s other operating system to Android, has evolved very rapidly since the 2016 introduction of the Google Play Store, allowing Chromebooks to download and install Android apps. Google has since introduced support for running native Linux apps under the project name of Crostini. Crostini allows full desktop applications to run on Chromebooks and is based on the Debian Linux distribution. Running Android and Linux apps relies on Chrome OS’ ability to run containerized virtual machines, a means of allowing the core operating system to run different segmented virtual machines in an efficient and secure manner. That’s a fancy way of saying your Chromebook can have multiple personalities, and it’s the same technology underpinning how some Chromebooks will soon be able to run Windows apps. Today’s news is that the team at 9to5Google have identified a new special project in the Chromium open-source code called Borealis. Borealis is a Linux distribution based on popular Ubuntu, and comes complete with Steam already installed:

      • Steam on Chromebooks could be a game changer

        There have been continual developments in the realm of Linux on ChromeOS for some time. There early builds — Crostini — were based on Debian Linux.

        What is very different with the new version “Gerrit” versus the older Crostini builds is that it’s now Ubuntu based vs Debian. This is likely due to the previous iterations of Valve’s Steam for Linux running on Ubuntu.

      • Google could bring Steam gaming to Chromebooks (via Linux)

        Chrome OS is an operating system that was originally designed to support a single app – the Chrome web browser. But in recent years Google has brought support for Android apps and Linux apps to Chromebooks.

        So far that Linux support has come through a feature called Crostini, which is basically a virtual machine that runs Debian Linux in a way that lets you install and run Linux software without leaving Chrome OS.

        But 9to5Google was digging through the source code for Chromium OS (the open source version of Chrome OS) and discovered a new Linux virtual machine called Borealis, which uses Ubuntu rather than Debian. Borealis also includes a pre-installed version of Valve’s Steam game client for Linux.

    • Kernel Space

      • Linux Plumbers Conference: Linux Plumbers Conference is Not Sold Out

        We’re really sorry, but apparently the Cvent registration site we use has suffered a bug which is causing it to mark the conference as “Sold Out” and, unfortunately, since today is the beginning of the American Independence day weekend, we can’t get anyone to fix it until Monday. However, rest assured there are plenty of places still available, so if you can wait until Monday, you should be able to register for the conference as soon as the site is fixed.

      • Linus Torvalds: ‘I Do No Coding Any More’

        The Linux Foundation recently uploaded its video from the Open Source Summit and Embedded Linux Conference: Europe. And there was a poignant moment when Linus Torvalds did his traditional keynote conversation with Dirk Hohndel, VMware’s vice president and chief open source officer.

        Honndel had asked Linus — his hair now uncharacteristically long — what he spends his time on as a kernel maintainer. What’s his workflow? “What do you do?”

      • Keynote: Linus Torvalds in conversation with Dirk Hohndel

        Keynote: Linus Torvalds, Creator of Linux & Git, in conversation with Dirk Hohndel, VP & Chief Open Source Officer, VMware

      • Graphics Stack

        • Mike Blumenkrantz: Smol Extension

          I recently came across a number of failing tests where the problem was related to variable sizing in a shader.

        • The Annual X.Org / Wayland / Mesa Conference Is Going Virtual Due To COVID-19

          XDC 20 was set to take place this September in Poland but is now moving to an online event as a result of the ongoing coronavirus / COVID-19 pandemic.

          The X.Org Foundation has decided to make XDC 2020 a virtual conference due to uncertainty over the COVID-19 situation come September in Europe. This will be the first time the annual X.Org Developers’ Conference has been an entirely online event.

          The announcement was made today as well as extending the call for presentations by an additional two weeks.

    • Benchmarks

      • XFS / EXT4 / Btrfs / F2FS / NILFS2 Performance On Linux 5.8

        Given the reignited discussions this week over Btrfs file-system performance stemming from a proposal to switch Fedora on the desktop to using Btrfs, here are some fresh benchmarks of not only Btrfs but alongside XFS, EXT4, F2FS, and for kicks NILFS2 was also tossed into the mix for these mainline file-system tests off the in-development Linux 5.8 kernel.

        With the yet-to-be-approved proposal specifically to use Btrfs for desktop installations, for this testing a single NVMe solid-state drive was used for testing in jiving with conventional desktop use-cases rather than any elaborate RAID setups, etc. Each of the tested file-systems were carried out with the default mount options in an out-of-the-box manner.

    • Instructionals/Technical

    • Wine or Emulation

      • Wine Announcement
        The Wine development release 5.12 is now available.
        What's new in this release (see below for details):
          - NTDLL converted to PE format.
          - Support for the WebSocket API.
          - Improved RawInput support.
          - Vulkan spec update.
          - Various bug fixes.
      • Wine 5.12 is out – better RawInput and WebSocket API support

        The Wine compatibility layer continues progressing, with the latest development release Wine 5.12 out now.

        What is Wine, apart from a tasty liquid that you should drink responsibly? It would be a bit weird if we were covering the world of fermented grapes—we are in fact talking about software. A quick reminder for the newer Linux user: it’s a compatibility layer that allows the running of Windows-only applications and games on Linux and other operating systems. It’s one of the driving forces behind Steam Play Proton.

      • Wine 5.12 Brings WebSocket API Support, Better RawInput Handling

        Wine 5.12 is out for the US Holiday weekend testing.

        Wine 5.12 brings NTDLL now converted to PE format, support for the WebSocket API, improved RawInput support, updated Vulkan specification compliance, and around 48 known bug fixes. The bug fixes for this bi-weekly release help out software ranging from Battle.net to Adobe Photoshop to multiple games.

    • Games

      • Humble Choice for July is up with Railway Empire, EARTHLOCK and more

        Humble Choice, the monthly curated bundle from Humble Bundle is up with a fresh set of games to pick from and claim to be yours. You pick a tier with different prices to get access to the huge Humble Trove (a collection of DRM-free games) plus a Humble Store discount and then you pick between 3-9 games to keep.

      • The Universim god game gets early-game love, a new explainer trailer plus more

        A city builder that’s also a sort-of god game sim and eventually it will also be a multi-planet strategy game? The Universim certainly has a grand plan and a new explainer trailer to help.

        I’ve written about this one numerous times now, personally supporting it quite early on because it seemed so promising and I absolutely love where they’re going with it. Thankfully, one of my pet-peeves has been solved a little and this with the early game seeing some love in the ‘Melting Shoe’ update out now.

      • [Older] Neville Antony: Full Throttle

        Coding period for GSoC 2020 has started and I have begun my work on my summer project. As said in my introductory post, I will be working on adding functionality to create and manage game collections in GNOME Games with help from Alexander (@alexm). After the project is complete, it will provide users with a shiny new ability to add any games to their own custom collections. And some additional feature to provide users with a quickly accessible, automatically generated collections such as recently played, favorites and hidden games.

        I started out by separating the work into independently manageable chunks so that I can open several smaller merge requests, rather than a single large one, which I can imagine would be horrible to manage, and even worse for Alexander to review. And my code, however small it is, usually needs a lot of fixing.

        So the first chunk I decided to work on is… Selection Mode! I decided selection mode would be the best part to start with so that when I get to modifying the database part to store all the collections and the games in it, I will have all the necessary functionality to test it with actual real world data rather than some made up data using temporary spaghetti code.

      • Neville Antony: GSoC Progress Update

        In my last blog post, I explained how selection mode was implemented in Games. That was one of the first steps to support Collections in Games, as an efficient way to select games to add/remove from collection is crucial for managing collections. In this post I’ll be talking about how “Favorites Collection” will be implemented in GNOME Games.


        The first thing to do was to introduce a Collection interface to define a behavior that all types of collections must follow. All collections must have an ID and a title. Apart from that, all collections must provide a way to add and remove games from it. And on adding or removing a game from the collection, it should emit a “game added” or “game removed” signal respectively. A collection must also implement a load(), which when called, should load the games belonging to a collection from the database. Since there’s going to be different types of collections, how a collection has to be loaded might differ from each other.

        Every collection has its own GameModel and must implement a get_game_model(). A GameModel is a ListModel which stores the list of games in a collection, and get_game_model() returns its GameModel which can be bound to the flowbox of a GamesPage (a widget where games can be displayed with thumbnail and title).

        Other than these, all collections must also implement on_game_added(), on_game_removed() and on_game_replaced(). These are unrelated to games being added or removed to or from a collection. These has to do with games being discovered, and when some games are no longer available to the app. When a game is discovered by tracker or a cached game is loaded, it is added to a games hash table. This emits a game_added signal (unrelated to a collection’s game_added), which every collection listens to. If the added game belongs to the collection, it adds this game to the collection. Similarly on_game_removed() and on_game_replaced() handles stuff related to when a game which was cached but is no longer found by the app, and when a game has been renamed, moved to a different directory, or when it’s still the same cached game but with different UID etc.

        With the general behavior of a collection defined, it was time to introduce a FavoritesCollection which implements Collection.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • KSnip and Spectacle

          Switching back-and-forth between the tabs gives me a “pixels moved” sense, and that’s really useful. KSnip’s wide selection of annotation tools – it’s nearly a specialized drawing application – helps, too: I tell people to draw big red arrows on screenshots pointing to problems (because describing things is difficult, and a glaring visual glitch to you may be totally invisible to me).

          With KSnip, adding detail to a screenshot is child’s play.

          That’s not to say that KSnip doesn’t have its issues. But a blog post is not a place to complaing about someone else’s Free Software: the issue tracker is (with constructive bug reports, not complaints).

        • Third alpha release of my project

          I’m glad to announce the third alpha of my GSoC 2020 project. For anyone not in the loop, I’m working on integrating Disney’s SeExpr expression language as a new type of Fill Layer.

        • Norbert Preining: [Debian] KDE/Plasma Status Update 2020-07-04

          Great timing for 4th of July, here is another status update of KDE/Plasma for Debian. Short summary: everything is now available for Debian sid and testing, for both i386 and am64 architectures!

          With Qt 5.14 arriving in Debian/testing, and some tweaks here and there, we finally have all the packages (2 additional deps, 82 frameworks, 47 Plasma, 216 Apps) built on both Debian unstable and Debian testing, for both amd64 and i386 architectures. Again, big thanks to OBS!

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • Epiphany GSoC Milestone

          During the past month I have been hacking on Epiphany’s Preferences dialog. The first piece of submitted work was splitting the dialog source code files into smaller ones. The split didn’t reflect any visual changes on Epiphany’s user interface so I decided to postpone writing this blog post.

    • Distributions

      • Reviews

        • Elive Review: For the Enlightened Linux Users

          Elive is a Linux distribution based on Debian that features a great implementation of the Enlightenment desktop environment. It is a distro that is self-proclaimed as not being aimed at one particular kind of user but one that is primarily designed to be used on very old computers. The default ISO image is 32-bit and installs with Linux 3.16 by default. It uses just a hair over 160 MB RAM and runs beautifully with one CPU core and zero 3D acceleration. This allows Elive to tout itself as capable of turning a 15-year old computer into one of high performance, and I quite honestly believe it. In this Elive Review, we’ll discuss system performance, usability, and why it may or may not be the distro for you.

      • Screenshots/Screencasts

      • SUSE/OpenSUSE

        • openSUSE Tumbleweed – Review of the week 2020/27

          Week 27 has mostly been in the light of the release of openSUSE Leap 15.2. With the developers mostly focusing on getting the best Leap release yet out of the door, it’s just natural that Tumbleweed has seen a bit less of churn. But honestly: has it? We have released 6 snapshots during this week so that does not talk for the ‘less active development’ of Tumbleweed during this period. The snapshots released were 0625, 0626, 0627, 0628, 0630, and 0701.

      • Fedora and IBM/Red Hat

        • Red Hat CTO On Racial Justice, Immigration & More…

          In this interview Chris Wright, CTO of Red Hat, sat down with TFiR founder Swapnil Bhartiya to talk about some of the topics facing our society – racial justice, immigration, discrimination in work force and beyond. We are grateful to Wright for agreeing to talk about things that most of us feel uncomfortable with.

        • GNOME Internet Radio Locator 3.0.1 for Fedora Core 32

          GNOME Internet Radio Locator 3.0.1 features updated language translations, new, improved map marker palette and now also includes radio from Washington, United States of America; London, United Kingdom; Berlin, Germany; Radio Eins, and Paris, France; France Inter/Info/Culture, as well as 118 other radio stations from around the world with audio streaming implemented through GStreamer.

        • Fedora program update: 2020-27

          Here’s your report of what has happened in Fedora this week. 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.

        • Outreachy design internship: budget templates and infographics

          Hey, I’m Smera. I’m one of the Outreachy interns this year, working on creating new designs for the Fedora Project. I work with Marie Nordin (FCAIC) and the Fedora Design team. I started on the 19th of May and this is what I have been up to!

        • Will Red Hat Rule the Supercomputing Industry with Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL)?

          Red Hat Enterprise Linux has achieved a significant milestone after serving as an operating system for the world’s fastest supercomputer, according to Top500. This opens up the debate on why Linux is the most preferred operating system for supercomputers.

          Supercomputers process vast datasets and conduct complex simulations much faster than traditional computers. From weather modeling, disease control, energy efficiency,nuclear testing, and quantum mechanics, supercomputers can tackle numerous scientific challenges. Countries like the U.S. and China have forever been in the race to develop the most powerful and fastest supercomputers. However, this year technological superpower Japan stole the show, when its Fugaku ARM-based supercomputer was ranked the no.1 supercomputer in the world by the Top500 list. The system runs on the Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) platform. In fact, the June 2020 Top500 list of supercomputers declared that the top three supercomputers in the world and four out of the top 10 supercomputers run on the Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) platform. That is a pretty powerful validation of RHEL’s capability to meet demanding computing environments.

        • A developer-centered approach to application development

          Do you dream of a local development environment that’s easy to configure and works independently from the software layers that you are currently not working on? I do!

          As a software engineer, I have suffered the pain of starting projects that were not easy to configure. Reading the technical documentation does not help when much of it is outdated, or even worse, missing many steps. I have lost hours of my life trying to understand why my local development environment was not working.

        • Automate workshop setup with Ansible playbooks and CodeReady Workspaces

          At Red Hat, we do many in-person and virtual workshops for customers, partners, and other open source developers. In most cases, the workshops are of the “bring your own device” variety, so we face a range of hardware and software setups and corporate endpoint-protection schemes, as well as different levels of system knowledge.

          In the past few years, we’ve made heavy use of Red Hat CodeReady Workspaces (CRW). Based on Eclipse Che, CodeReady Workspaces is an in-browser IDE that is familiar to most developers and requires no pre-installation or knowledge of system internals. You only need a browser and your brain to get hands-on with this tech.

          We’ve also built a set of playbooks for Red Hat Ansible to automate our Quarkus workshop. While they are useful, the playbooks are especially helpful for automating at-scale deployments of CodeReady Workspaces for Quarkus development on Kubernetes. In this article, I introduce our playbooks and show you how to use them for your own automation efforts.

        • What does a scrum master do?

          Turning a love of open source communities into a career is possible, and there are plenty of directions you can take. The path I’m on these days is as a scrum master.

          Scrum is a framework in which software development teams deliver working software in increments of 30 days or less called “sprints.” There are three roles: scrum master, product owner, and development team. A scrum master is a facilitator, coach, teacher/mentor, and servant/leader that guides the development team through executing the scrum framework correctly.

      • Debian Family

        • Grml 2020.06 – Codename Ausgehfuahangl

          We did it again™, at the end of June we released Grml 2020.06, codename Ausgehfuahangl. This Grml release (a Linux live system for system administrators) is based on Debian/testing (AKA bullseye) and provides current software packages as of June, incorporates up to date hardware support and fixes known issues from previous Grml releases.

          I am especially fond of our cloud-init and qemu-guest-agent integration, which makes usage and automation in virtual environments like Proxmox VE much more comfortable.

        • NsCDE

          There is a new desktop available for Sparkers: NsCDE

          What is NsCDE?

          Not so Common Desktop Environment (NsCDE) is a retro but powerful (kind of) UNIX desktop environment which resembles CDE look (and partially feel) but with a more powerful and flexible framework beneath-the-surface, more suited for 21st century unix-like and Linux systems and user requirements than original CDE.
          NsCDE can be considered as a heavyweight FVWM theme on steroids, but combined with a couple other free software components and custom FVWM applications and a lot of configuration, NsCDE can be considered a lightweight hybrid desktop environment.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Back from the Dead: How to Install Shutter on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS

          Shutter was the go-to screenshot app for the Ubuntu desktop a few years back, but development stalled and the Linux-loving world, sob, moved on without it.

          Now it’s back as a Snap app!

          “And just why-oh-why is that news, Mr Sneddon?”, you say.

          “Because it’s a great app,” I reply.

          See, I love Flameshot (it made our list of the best Ubuntu apps) but it’s not quite as intuitive to use or as versatile in the screenshot taking and image editing department as Shutter was. The tool’s “Session” screen alone was a major highlight for me.

          Now, if you want to run Shutter on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS (and have it run reliably) you can — but you need to roll up your sleeves to get it working. The app is no longer in the Ubuntu repos, and older builds acquired from older Ubuntu releases have dependencies issues that require …let’s just sat “logistical intervention” to workaround.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Web Browsers

        • Mozilla

          • SpiderMonkey Newsletter 5 (Firefox 78-79)

            SpiderMonkey is the JavaScript engine used in Mozilla Firefox. This newsletter gives an overview of the JavaScript and WebAssembly work we’ve done as part of the Firefox 78 and 79 Nightly release cycles.

            If you like these newsletters, you may also enjoy Yulia’s weekly Compiler Compiler live stream, a guided tour of what it is like to work on SpiderMonkey and improve spec compliance.

          • In Filter Treeherder jobs by test or manifest path I describe the feature.

            In Filter Treeherder jobs by test or manifest path I describe the feature. In this post I will explain how it came about.
            I want to highlight the process between a conversation and a deployed feature. Many times, it is an unseen part of the development process that can be useful for contributors and junior developers who are trying to grow as developers.
            Back in the Fall of 2019 I started inquiring into developers’ satisfaction with Treeherder. This is one of the reasons I used to go to the office once in a while. One of these casual face-to-face conversations led to this feature. Mike Conley explained to me how he would look through various logs to find a test path that had failed on another platform (see referenced post for further details).
            After I understood the idea, I tried to determine what options we had to implement it. I wrote a Google Doc with various alternative implementations and with information about what pieces were needed for a prototype. I requested feedback from various co-workers to help discover blind spots in my plans.
            Once I had some feedback from immediate co-workers, I made my idea available in a Google group (increasing the circle of people giving feedback). I described my intent to implement the idea and was curious to see if anyone else was already working on it or had better ideas on how to implement it. I did this to raise awareness in larger circles, reduce duplicate efforts and learn from prior work.
            I also filed a bug to drive further technical discussions and for interested parties to follow up on the work. Fortunately, around the same time Andrew Halberstadt started working on defining explicitly what manifests each task executes before the tasks are scheduled (see bug). This is a major component to make the whole feature on Treeherder functional. In some cases, talking enough about the need can enlist others from their domains of expertise to help with your project.

          • Filter Treeherder jobs by test or manifest path

            This feature is useful for developers and code sheriffs because it permits them to determine whether or not a test that fails in one platform configuration also fails in other ones. Previously, this was difficult because certain test suites are split into multiple tasks (aka “chunks”). In the screenshot below, you can see that the manifest path devtools/client/framework/browser-toolbox/test/browser.ini is executed in different chunks.

      • FSF

        • GNU Projects

          • Resizing with GIMP

            On your computer, with GIMP you can resize pictures easily to later accompany your texts with them. I present you here how to do that using Scale Tool and either manually or numerically shrink a picture. Below is a one minute video followed by explanations and exercises you can download. Don’t forget this is the 4th part of GIMP Guide for Authors. Happy editing!

      • Programming/Development

        • New Tech Vocabulary for 2020 Could Break Software Compatibility

          2020 has been an interesting year with plenty of disruption to most people lives, and political changes. Now it appears some of those changes will affect technology, and by that, I mean things like changes to datasheets and even source code.


          Twitter’s senior management is allegedly backing the effort for the changes. This goes beyond racially charged terms, but if it’s the world we’re going to live in so be it. Some changes in the datasheet may not be a big issue, except for the initial confusion, but it may become problematic when changes happen in the source code as it may break other programs and scripts.

          One example is Github planning to replace the master branch by another name. If it’s going to happen, and others are going to follow suit, I wondered about many “slave” code results there are in the Linux kernel. Answer: 2,878.

        • Complete Guide To Writing A PKGBUILD: Ready For The AUR
        • #28: Welcome RSPM and test-drive with Bionic and Focal

          Welcome to the 28th post in the relatively random R recommendations series, or R4 for short. Our last post was a “double entry” in this R4 series and the newer T4 video series and covered a topic touched upon in this R4 series multiple times: easy binary install, especially on Ubuntu.

          That post already previewed the newest kid on the block: RStudio’s RSPM, now formally announced. In the post we were only able to show Ubuntu 18.04 aka bionic. With the formal release of RSPM support has been added for Ubuntu 20.04 aka focal—and we are happy to announce that of course we added a corresponding Rocker r-rspm container. So you can now take full advantage of RSPM either via docker pull rocker/r-rspm:18.04 or via docker pull rocker/r-rspm:20.04 covering the two most recent LTS releases.

        • Python

          • Release of CubicWeb 3.28

            It is with pleasure (and some delay) that we are proud to annonce the release of CubicWeb 3.28.

          • Test and Code: 120: FastAPI & Typer – Sebastián Ramírez

            FastAPI is a modern, fast (high-performance), web framework for building APIs with Python based on standard Python type hints.
            Typer is a library for building CLI applications, also based on Python type hints.
            Type hints and many other details are intended to make it easier to develop, test, and debug applications using FastAPI and Typer.

            The person behind FastAPI and Typer is Sebastián Ramírez.

          • The Real Python Podcast – Episode #16: Thinking in Pandas: Python Data Analysis the Right Way

            Are you using the Python library Pandas the right way? Do you wonder about getting better performance, or how to optimize your data for analysis? What does normalization mean? This week on the show we have Hannah Stepanek to discuss her new book “Thinking in Pandas”.

          • How to Write a Makefile – Automating Python Setup, Compilation, and Testing

            When you want to run a project that has multiple sources, resources, etc., you need to make sure that all of the code is recompiled before the main program is compiled or run.


            Well, Python is technically both an interpreted and compiled language, because in order for it to interpret a line of code, it needs to precompile it into byte code which is not hardcoded for a specific CPU, and can be run after the fact.

            A more detailed, yet concise explanation can be found on Ned Batchelder’s blog. Also, if you need a refresher on how Programming Language Processors work, we’ve got you covered.

          • Configuring Emacs for Python

            Python is one of the most popular programming languages out there, and the growth that it is seeing is continuously on the rise. Python is a high-level language, known for being universal and relatively easier to understand and learn. Having an extremely active and supportive community, along with excellent documentation and a large number of tutorials and guides, has led to it being incredibly easy to analyze and meeting various development needs of users.
            Furthermore, having libraries like NumPy, OpenCV, scikit-learn makes it perfect to be used for projects of various Computer Science fields like machine learning and data science. For a language that keeps on rapidly growing, it is thus imperative for developers to use editors that are fully able to grasp the intricacies behind it.

            One such text editor is Emacs, which, being open-source and cross-platform along with a highly customizable and user-friendly interface, offers some scintillating features to its users such as multiple editing modes, text manipulation tools and integration with external tools. Since it is extremely customizable, it can easily be configured to be used as a Python IDE. Hence today, we will be looking at how one can configure Emacs for Python Development and turn it into a Python IDE.

          • A Labyrinth of Lies

            In the 1986 movie Labyrinth, a young girl (played by Jennifer Connelly) is faced with a dilemma. The adorable Jim Henson puppets explain to her that one guard always lies, and one guard always tells the truth. She needs to figure out which door leads to the castle at the center of the eponymous Labyrinth, and which one to certain death (dun-dun-dun!).

            I decided that like any reasonable movie watcher, I need to implement this in Python.

        • Shell/Bash/Zsh/Ksh

          • Bash append to array

            The array data type is used in bash to store multiple data. The new data can be inserted at the end of an array variable in various ways. Bash has no built-in function like other programming languages to append new data in bash array. How you can insert single and multiple data at the end of the array in bash is shown in this article.

          • How to Replace a String in a File in Bash

            As a programmer, you might need to work with different types of files to store data temporarily or permanently. Sometimes, you may need to replace part of the file or modify the particular content of the file. To replace content in a file, you must search for the particular file string. The ‘sed’ command is used to replace any string in a file using a bash script. This command can be used in various ways to replace the content of a file in bash. The ‘awk’ command can also be used to replace the string in a file. This tutorial will show you how to replace any string value from a file using a bash script.A text file named Sales.txt with the following content is created to show the replacement operations.

          • How to append a line to a file in bash

            Sometimes we need to work with a file for programming purposes, and the new line requires to add at the end of the file. This appending task can be done by using ‘echo‘ and ‘tee‘ commands. Using ‘>>’ with ‘echo’ command appends a line to a file. Another way is to use ‘echo,’ pipe(|), and ‘tee’ commands to add content to a file. How these commands can be used in the bash script are shown in this article.

  • Leftovers

    • Maya Moore for the Win

      After 22 years behind bars for a crime he did not commit, Jonathan Irons is at long last a free man. Irons, who is only 40 years old, had been sentenced to 50 years for a burglary and assault he was said to have committed at 16. Despite a lack of evidence linking him to the crime, an all-white St. Louis jury convicted the then-16-year-old as an adult.

    • Biopic? Shirley, You Jest

      On the evening of August 1, 1943, after breaking bread and pulling corks, talking folklore, jazz and blues, with New Yorker critic Stanley Hyman and novelist Shirley Jackson in their Queens apartment, up-and-coming writer Ralph Ellison said goodnight to them and took the train home to Harlem. When he emerged at 137th Street, he walked right into a raging race riot. Fires, massive looting, chaos.

    • Try to Get Published; Try to Be Heard

      Want to write nonfiction or fiction with a left bent or left themes and get any attention? Lots of luck in the age of the Internet and giants like Amazon!

    • Jon Fosse’s Existential Doppelgängers

      In the mystical fictions of Jon Fosse, plot dangles behind consciousness like a tail from a kite. Events do not occur so much as they circle outward in dense, leaden rings. His protagonists are little theaters of repetition. Particular thoughts and phrases are compulsively returned to, adjusted, undermined, and reconstituted in pale, fleeting action. The surfaces of his characters’ lives are scoured by gestures of obsession and doubt. They are derivatives in a divine calculus that forever exceeds their understanding. Fosse often dramatizes these states of consciousness under duress—paranoia, delusion, mania—to theorize about the limits of life and art.

    • Health/Nutrition

      • New Study Suggests Thousands of Deaths Are Missing From Coronavirus Toll

        A new study published this week suggests that tens of thousands of deaths in the United States have not been included in national COVID-19 death tolls despite the fact that many of those fatalities are likely attributable to the disease.

      • Trump Does U-Turn Stating He’s “All for Masks” as Case Numbers Soar

        As his disapproval numbers rise amid the coronavirus crisis, and as nearly two-thirds of Americans believe the pandemic will get worse, President Donald Trump appears to be shifting his position when it comes to wearing masks.

      • Disbelief, Belief and the Perils of Pandemic Re-opening

        As a business owner, I ought to be all over the re-opening going on in full swing now in NYS. My daughter tells us customers have been clamoring for weeks about returning to “normalcy.” For Orin and me, the decision has layers of complication, including the fact that the Cafe’s finances are precarious, and that our daughter, understandably, is tiring of the burden of helping us keep a small (“quirky” as Google calls it) business going. We’re tired, too, and fearful as we see the spikes in coronavirus in states that re-opened “too soon,” where there’s no pandemic leadership alternative to the federal government (Trump). No leadership leaves a space for mindless anti-authoritarianism, a “cowboy” mentality that exists here too: the divisiveness and chaos it engenders, in turn, means there’s no end in sight to the disaster for local businesses on the frontline for re-opening.

      • Racial disparities in healthcare innovation in the time of COVID-19

        In previous posts, we have explored how structural racism contributes to disparities in COVID-19 cases and deaths and in access to COVID-19 treatments and preventatives. Legal institutions have also been complicit in creating a healthcare innovation system in which those receiving scientific and medical education are far from representative of the U.S. public. The resulting disparities by race, gender, and class raise substantial problems for both equity and economic growth—but these inequalities receive too little attention from most health and innovation scholars, ourselves included. This week, we examine how the COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted and exacerbated racial disparities in three slices of the healthcare innovation ecosystem: medical education, medical patenting, and clinical trials.


        In addition to creating barriers to entry into the medical profession, legal institutions have expanded the activities requiring licensure. For example, until the 1940s, Black midwives provided most prenatal and childbirth care to Black women in the United States—an essential service, at a time when many white doctors and midwives would have refused to care for them. But these midwives were regulated out of existence through state scope-of-practice laws and the Sheppard–Towner Act of 1921, which provided federal funds to states for professionalized prenatal care.

        In the midst of a pandemic, a physician workforce that does not represent patients is problematic both because Black patients are less likely to face discrimination from Black doctors and because Black doctors—and other medical workers such as nurses and technicians—have been hit hardest during this crisis. They have spoken out in recent weeks about their frustration and fatigue. Professor Adia Harvey Wingfield, a sociologist who focuses on Black health care workers, fears that COVID-19 may cause “a setback of the modest advances the medical industry has made towards improving racial diversity.”


        Today, structural barriers—a product of centuries of overt and structural racism—remain an impediment to Black medical innovation. First, patents are not cheap—they can cost tens of thousands of dollars from preparation to issuance, and actually bringing an invention to market can cost orders of magnitude more. In a world stratified by racial disparities in wealth (and access to capital), this is likely to contribute to a significant deficit of Black inventors. Second, exposure to “centers of innovation”—specifically, areas of high socioeconomic status, strong education systems, geographic areas that produce a larger number of patents—is correlated with a strong likelihood of becoming an inventor oneself. Given the racial disparities in these measures, this further contributes to the paucity of Black patentees. And third, as shown by Professor Cook, concerns over violence and personal safety—emblematic in the ongoing spate of police violence against Black citizens—have dampened innovation. Black patenting rates—even in 2010—continued to lag behind those of 1899.

        Like many other illnesses, innovations to treat and diagnose COVID-19 come largely from the medical profession. With a diminished roster of Black physicians, and consequently, Black physician-innovators, a dearth of Black patentees ensures that those suffering the most from the disease have not been afforded equal opportunities to cure it.

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Security

          • Security updates for Friday

            Security updates have been issued by Debian (docker.io and imagemagick), Fedora (alpine, firefox, hostapd, and mutt), openSUSE (opera), Red Hat (rh-nginx116-nginx), SUSE (ntp, python3, and systemd), and Ubuntu (firefox, linux, linux-aws, linux-aws-hwe, linux-gcp, linux-gcp-4.15, linux-gke-4.15, linux-hwe, linux-kvm, linux-oem, linux-oracle, linux-raspi2, linux-snapdragon, linux, linux-aws, linux-gcp, linux-kvm, linux-oracle, linux-riscv, linux, linux-azure, linux-gcp, linux-gcp-5.3, linux-hwe, linux-kvm, linux-oracle, linux-oracle-5.3, linux-gke-5.0, linux-oem-osp1, net-snmp, and samba).

          • What is Software Security?

            Software security is the building of secure software with inherent defense so that it continues to function under malicious attacks, to the satisfaction of the users and owners of the software. This article explains the threats and solutions, from a general point of view. Standard vocabulary in information security is also explained. You should be computer and Internet literate to understand this article; you should also have studied a computer language, e.g., Perl, C, C++, PHP, etc.
            What is secured is information and software packages (applications and documents). Information is any message that is useful to anybody. “Information” is a vague word. The context in which it is used gives its meaning. It can mean news, lecture, tutorial (or lesson), or solution. A software package is usually a solution to some problem or related problems. In the past, all information not spoken was written on paper. Today, the software can be considered as a subset of information.

          • L1TF Cache Flushing Mode Could Soon Be Controlled Via Kconfig Build Option

            Approaching the two year anniversary next month of the L1TF / Foreshadow vulnerability, a Google engineer has proposed allowing the default mitigation state to be controlled via a Kconfig build-time option.

            This speculative execution attack on Intel CPUs has been mitigated since August 2018 and has offered for KVM virtual machine mitigation the kvm-intel.vmentry_l1d_flush module parameter for controlling the L1 data cache flushing behavior. But now a Google engineer has proposed setting the default L1 data flushing mode to be configurable at build-time via a new KVM_VMENTRY_L1D_FLUSH knob. This knob doesn’t provide any new L1 Terminal Fault mitigation but rather just allows adjusting the default behavior for the default configuration of that kernel image, whether it be to never flush the cache before a VMENTER, conditionally flush, or the most impactful state of always flushing.

          • diffoscope 150 released

            The diffoscope maintainers are pleased to announce the release of diffoscope version 150.

          • Privacy/Surveillance

    • Defence/Aggression

      • Time to Rethink the US-ROK Alliance

        North Korea has blown up the inter-Korean liaison office in Kaesong. It is threatening an all-out pamphlet war in response to defectors sending anti-regime propaganda to the north. South Korea’s unification minister has stepped down after failing to meet with his North Korean counterparts during his 14-month tenure.

      • Representative Barbara Lee: ‘Defund the Pentagon Budget’

        Barbara Lee tweeted a four-word message last week that made the connection between domestic and foreign policy that is too often neglected: “Defund the Pentagon budget.” The Democratic representative from California, who cast the sole vote against the 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force that became an excuse for bloated military budgets and forever wars, has long argued for a reordering of priorities that places human needs above the demands of the military-industrial complex.

      • Here Are the 16 Democrats Who Voted With GOP to Kill Amendment to Withdraw All US Troops, End Afghan War

        “After nearly 19 years, over 147,000 casualties and total costs over a trillion dollars, it’s long past time to bring troops home and invest in political, diplomatic, and development tools.”

      • Congress Could Rubber-Stamp a Defense Spending Spree

        The annual US defense budget has never been crafted through a particularly transparent process. Now, a global pandemic has taken the yearly passage of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) from merely murky to downright opaque.

    • Environment

    • Finance

      • It’s Not Just Meat: All Farm and Food Workers Are in Peril

        COVID-19 outbreaks are now reaching far beyond the meatpacking industry. Migrant farmworkers in fruit orchards and vegetable fields, long the targets of intense exploitation, are seeing their health put in even greater jeopardy as they’re pushed to feed an increasingly voracious supply chain in pandemic-time.

      • Fair Housing Advocates Celebrate Passage of AOC’s Repeal of Faircloth Amendment

        “The Faircloth Amendment is one of the most heartless pieces of legislation that has prevented any substantive action on housing for years.”

      • We Won’t Have a Truly Global Economy Until People Start Taxing It That Way

        Major talks between the United States and the European Union to establish a shared tax framework for multinational companies broke down on the issue of seeking to secure an agreement on digital taxation. Big tech, which is heavily a U.S. creation, has long been in the sights of European economies, as their profits and revenues have soared and they have increasingly become major components of the 21st-century economy.

      • What Media Aren’t Telling You About Reopening Risks

        In the second half of June, the story of the United States’ coronavirus pandemic began to shift dramatically, as a massive surge in new infections took hold, particularly across states in the South and West that had previously been spared the worst of the outbreak. Media reports abruptly switched gears from declaring that reopening was proceeding with few ill effects (Reuters, 5/17/20; Tampa Bay Times, 5/28/20) to expressing alarm that health officials’ warnings against lifting social distancing restrictions too soon had been proven right—a cognitive dissonance perhaps most dramatically depicted in Oregon Public Broadcasting’s headline, “Oregon’s COVID-19 Spike Surprises, Despite Predictions of Rising Caseloads” (6/10/20).

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

  • Censorship/Free Speech

  • Freedom of Information/Freedom of the Press

    • The Kafkaesque Imperium: Julian Assange and the Second Superseding Indictment

      The Kafkaesque Imperium has taken yet another absurd step towards mean absurdity with another superseding indictment against Julian Assange. This move by the US Department of Justice seems to have surprised those involved in his extradition proceedings. Mark Summers QC, one of the members of the Assange legal team, did not conceal his astonishment at the call over hearing at London’s Westminster Magistrates’ Court. “We are surprised by the timing of this development. We were surprised to hear about it in the press.”

  • Civil Rights/Policing

    • Regional investigators reject appeal for criminal case over deadly raid on Yekaterinburg man’s home

      The Sverdlovsk region’s Investigative Committee branch has refused to launch a criminal case regarding the killing of Vladimir Taushankov, a Yekaterinburg man who was killed by National Guard officers during a raid at his home on May 31, 2020, Znak.com reports. 

    • Progressive Pulses Among the Ruins of Riot

      The violence that erupted from the mostly-peaceful demonstrations around the killing of George Floyd has subsided, though many businesses in Long Beach are now boarded up. In addition to the property damage itself—in many instances not covered by insurance because deemed “domestic terrorism”—these protective measures have a chilling effect on efforts to participate in the full reopening of the economy. Slogans in sympathy with Black Lives Matter (BLM) grace the facades of many businesses to express solidarity with the protests, or to at least immunize them from further attacks.

    • 150+ Civil Society Groups Issue Global Call for ‘New—and Improved—Normal’ for Post-Pandemic World

      “Now is the moment to reflect on the world as it is and consider a better alternative for the future,” the groups say in the letter.

    • ‘Threat to Our Privacy and Civil Liberties’: Nearly 40 Groups Demand Congress Ban Facial Recognition Surveillance

      “Even if the technology were accurate, it cannot be dissociated from the racist policies that are embedded in policing.”

    • Trump Campaign Faces Outcry for Selling T-Shirts With Nazi-Like Symbol

      Several users on social media this week took note of a product for sale on the website for President Donald Trump’s reelection campaign, and condemned the item for its apparent Nazi symbolism.

    • Beware of Anti-Trump Republicans Who Endorse Joe Biden

      A stampeding herd of “anti-Trump” Republican organizations and PACs has flooded the 2020 presidential campaign with ads attacking the president and endorsing his rival, Joe Biden. If beating Donald Trump in November is your main thing, this would appear to be only good news. I am forced to wonder, however, what the real intent is behind this sudden solidarity after three long years of near-silence from the deeply compromised “Never Trump” crew.

    • New York’s City Hall Encampment Is a Middle Finger to Our Elected Leaders

      Shortly before 3 am on Wednesday, several hundred protesters gathered in the plaza directly east of City Hall Park in downtown Manhattan. A few were new faces, but many had been there on and off for a week, when activists set up an encampment and declared that they were occupying the space as part of the nationwide movement against racism and policing.

    • A Friend of the KKK Built Mount Rushmore Monument on Sacred Lakota Land

      As tribal governments call on President Trump to cancel his Mount Rushmore Independence Day celebration, we look at why Native Americans have long pushed for the removal of the monument carved into the sacred Black Hills and designed by a sculptor with ties to the Ku Klux Klan. “This place is very, very sacred to our people,” says Nick Tilsen, president and CEO of the NDN Collective. “Stealing our land and then carving the faces of four white men who were colonizers, who committed genocide against Indigenous people, is an egregious act of violence.”

    • ICE Just Became Even Less Transparent

      Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) can now operate in greater secrecy, thanks to a special security classification quietly granted to it by the Trump administration. While ICE chief Matthew Albence heralded it as “a tremendous achievement,” experts say the designation deals a blow to transparency.

    • Fear of Falling: Can Making Black Lives Matter Rescue a Failing State?

      You know that feeling when you trip on the street and instantly sense that you’re about to crash hard and there’s no way to prevent it? As gravity has its way with you, all you can do is watch yourself going down. Yeah, that feeling.

    • Cuban Asylum Seeker Describes Vicious Pepper Spray Attack on Hunger Strikers at ICE Detention Facility

      More than 2,000 migrants and refugees in U.S. detention facilities have contracted Covid-19 as advocates demand their release.

    • Vulnerable LGBTQ+ Sex Workers Targeted Again by Politicians With EARN IT Act

      The EARN IT Act, which the Senate could advance tomorrow, is dangerous.

    • The Great Wall of Wokeness

      Does there exist a political force, partisan or populist, organized or decentralized, that can liberate the U.S. citizenry from the clutches of the neoliberal order? As I wrote in Feb. of last year, the neoliberal order seemed impervious to partisan defeat because its roots lie in a powerful evolutionary strategy called senescence. Now that the Sanders insurgency has been crushed and the faux populism of Donald Trump seems to be on a downward electoral trajectory due to his tone deaf response to the death of George Floyd and his bungled domestic response to covid-19, the Malevolent Evolutionary Stable Strategy (MESS) seems to have fully repelled the party populisms of both Right and Left, confirming my prediction. However, the murder of George Floyd has sparked an organic, grassroots, multiracial uprising that seems to present a new, novel threat to the neoliberal order and the MESS. Will this protest movement outcompete the MESS? The outlook is not good.

    • Ethiopian protests, Greek pushbacks, and a Myanmar mystery: The Cheat Sheet

      More than 90 people have died in protests in Ethiopia over the killing on Monday of iconic Oromo singer, Hachalu Hundessa. Seen as the voice of his generation, Hundessa’s songs captured the struggles of the historically marginalised Oromo people. The songs were a soundtrack to the anti-government protests that led to a change in leadership in 2018, with Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed taking office. Hundessa was shot dead in the capital, Addis Ababa, by unidentified gunmen – although his supporters blame the security forces. There have been multiple bomb blasts in the city, and some residents have armed themselves fearing ethnic violence. Human Rights Watch called on the government to act urgently to reduce tensions and ensure the “security forces do not make a combustible situation worse.” But on Tuesday, the internet was switched off, and the police then detained Oromo opposition leader, Bekele Gerba, and media mogul and Abiy critic Jawar Mohammed. Abiy, an Oromo himself, has charted a reformist course after decades of repression. But ethno-regionalist passions have also been ignited, which are proving hard to contain, with the security forces playing by the old rule book of rights abuses. Delayed elections have added to the tensions.

  • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

    • Charter Spectrum Lobbies FCC To Kill Time Warner Cable Merger Conditions

      When Charter proposed its $79 billion acquisition of Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks, former FCC boss Tom Wheeler brought in net neutrality advocate Marvin Ammori to help hammer out conditions that wound up actually being semi-meaningful, a rarity in the telecom space. Under the deal, Charter was banned from imposing usage caps, engaging in interconnection shenanigans with content providers like Netflix, or violating net neutrality (even if the rules themselves were killed) for a period of seven years. Charter was also required to expand broadband to 2 million additional locations.

  • Monopolies

    • Facebook Follows Twitter In Recognizing A ‘More Speech’ Approach Is Best For Newsworthy Liars

      As you may recall, a few weeks back, Twitter made a decision to add a fact check to some tweets by President Trump, and a few days later, to put a label on some of his tweets, saying that they violated Twitter’s policies, and would normally be deleted, but Twitter decided that given the newsworthiness of the speaker, they would be left up (though without the ability to comment or retweet them). The president reacted about as well as expected, meaning he whined vociferously, and eventually issued a silly executive order.

    • #StopHateforProfit: What Pundits Get Wrong About the Facebook Ad Boycott

      To stop profiting from hate—and align the company more closely with its mission—Facebook would have to rewire the technology that drives its multi-billion-dollar advertising enterprise.

    • Microsoft Edge has reportedly come close to being intrusive nagware
    • Patents

      • Federal Circuit Overhauls Rules of Practice and Forms: Important Takeaways

        Yesterday, the Federal Circuit issued extensive revisions to the 2019 Rules of Practice and also overhauled the vast majority of its required filing forms. While all practitioners should take a comprehensive review of the new rules (which can be found here and apply to “all cases filed or pending on or after July 1, 2020, to the extent practicable”), a few of the most substantial and practical are discussed below.

      • Counterproductive Patent Incentives

        Earlier this year, a pair of economists, Jay Bhattacharya and Mikko Packalen, published a research paper proposing an explanation for why scientific progress appears to have slowed. Their theory? An overemphasis on citation count, h-index, and similar metrics for scientists incentivizes them to pursue safe, late-stage research, not the scientific exploration needed to create the breakthroughs that lead to late-stage research.

        In other words, by making the incentive one that most rewards scientists who work in established and developed areas, scientists tend to work in those areas. Beyond that, the emphasis might also affect who becomes a scientist, tending to push the field towards those who tend to accept the received wisdom while pushing out those who might challenge it or explore new ideas.

        The same concerns might well apply to the modern emphasis on increasing the number of issued patents without any consideration for the quality or technological advancement each patent contains.

      • Confronting Your Accuser via ZOOM

        Federal Courts have been delaying trials since March 2020. There have been a handful here and there – but not jury trials.

        One patent case preparing for a jury trial before Judge Leonard Stark (D.Del) is Sunoco Partners Marketing & Terminals L.P. v. Powder Springs Logistics, LLC, 2020 WL 3605623 (D. Del. July 2, 2020). The lawsuit was filed back in 2017 alleging infringement of Sunoco’s patents for cutting its gasoline with cheaper butane. US9494948 and US9606548 (“continuous in-line blending of butane and petroleum”).

        In a recent order, Judge Stark announced that he is moving forward with an in-person jury trial, albeit with a few exceptions.

      • Software Patents

        • Velos Media patent determined to be likely invalid

          On June 30, 2020, the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) instituted trial on all challenged claims in an IPR filed by Unified against U.S. Patent 9,414,066, owned by Velos Media, LLC. The ’066 patent is directed to video decoding techniques and was originally assigned to Ericsson before being transferred to Velos in 2018.

          Velos claims to have and seeks to license patents allegedly essential to the HEVC / H.265 standard (such as the ‘066 patent). Unified filed this challenge as part of its ongoing efforts in its SEP Video Codec Zone after independently determining that the allegedly standard essential ‘066 patent is likely unpatentable.

        • Unified Affirmed Against Sound View by the Federal Circuit, Cancelling Claims

          On July 2, 2020, the Federal Circuit, in a written opinion, affirmed Unified Patents’ IPR2018-00096 and dismissed the appeal as moot for two other unrelated IPRs. The opinion, written by Judges Lourie, Dyk, and Chen, held that all claims at issue in U.S. Patent 6,125,371, owned by Sound View Innovations, LLC, were invalid. To date, Unified has never lost an appeal before the Federal Circuit.

    • Trademarks

      • One more on Aunt Jemima

        I’m sure that there will be a few references to the Aunt Jemima trademarks in upcoming law review articles. Let me direct you to a handful of court decisions regarding the mark. The cases offer an important look at how judges saw race & commerce in the mid-20th century.

        The courts here effectively concluded that only one company could sell flour (or syrup) branded with the caricature of a black-skinned person.


        A third Aunt Jemima case from 1917 is the more famous. Aunt Jemima Mills Co. v. Rigney & Co., 247 F. 407 (2d Cir. 1917). Rigney started selling “Aunt Jemima” branded maple syrup (name + image) without the permission or consent of the Aunt Jemima company (who at the time did not make syrup). The Second Circuit (Judge Ward) sided with Aunt Jemima Mills – holding that “[n]o one has a right to apply another’s name to his own goods” even if not in direct competition and no provably damages. The court then awarded an injunction to stop the use. Judge Learned Hand dissented and would have awarded no injunction because of acquiescence (8 year delay). The 2nd Circuit does not comment on the content of the mark other than remarking that it “consists of the words ‘Aunt Jemima’s,’ accompanying the picture of a negress laughing.” In a decision a few years later, the 2nd Circuit redescribed the mark as a “fanciful picture of a colored woman.” Anheuser-Busch v. Budweiser Malt Products Corp., 295 F. 306 (2d Cir. 1923).

        The final case I’ll discuss here is Gardella v. Log Cabin Products Co., 89 F.2d 891 (2d Cir. 1937). The decision here identifies Tess Gardella as “a white woman, of Italian extraction” who was a fairly famous actress who went by the stage-name Aunt Jemima (and applying black-face). “She said the Aunt Jemima character suggested itself to her because as a child she received that name from a colored maid who cared for her.” Gardella sued after an Aunt Jemima radio advertising campaign — alleging unfair competition and rights of publicity. She was awarded $115k (around $2 million in 2020 dollars). The basic idea here was that the company owned the imagery of the jovial colored woman caricature, but then Gardella made her come to life in a particular way. The company’s advertising campaign then hired an actor of “inferior quality” who appeared to imitate Gardella’s claimed style of imitating.

      • Book Review: 3D Trademarks and other Non-Traditional Trademarks

        Trade mark laws across the globe are increasingly accepting various categories of “non-traditional” trade marks as eligible for registration and protection. Still, being a relatively new occurrence, a thoughtful analysis of these legal developments is lacking. To fill this gap, Prof. Jacques de Werra (University of Geneva, UNIGE) has recently published the edited volume “3D Trademarks and other Non-Traditional Trademarks” [for the UNIGE conference, which preceded this publication, read the IPKat’s event report here]. This publication is the 12th volume of the UNIGE’s books’ series on intellectual property [previous volumes, including those on geographical indications, trade secrets, design law, are available in open-access.]


        The last two chapters offer an opposite and rather critical opinion as to the place of non-traditional trade marks. In Chapter 7, Prof. Irene Calboli challenges non-traditional trade marks as a negative phenomenon for innovation and creativity in the fashion industry. Using non-traditional trade marks from four luxury brands –Louboutin, Gucci, Louis Vuitton, and Bottega Veneta– as a guiding thread for her analysis, Prof. Calboli argues that non-traditional trade marks not only foreclose the competitors, but also chill the creativity of brands themselves, as they are bound to repeat their signature designs to fulfil the “use” requirement of trade marks.

        The volume closes with Chapter 8, authored by Prof. Martin Sentfleben, who addresses the growing tension between non-traditional trade marks and fundamental rights. The authors views the absolute grounds for refusal under the EU law, as potential gatekeepers, which serve to preserve the necessary balance between the interests of right holders and freedom of competition and expression.

    • Copyrights

      • Research Libraries Tell Publishers To Drop Their Awful Lawsuit Against The Internet Archive

        I’ve seen a lot of people — including those who are supporting the publishers’ legal attack on the Internet Archive — insist that they “support libraries,” but that the Internet Archive’s Open Library and National Emergency Library are “not libraries.” First off, they’re wrong. But, more importantly, it’s good to see actual librarians now coming out in support of the Internet Archive as well. The Association of Research Libraries has put out a statement asking publishers to drop this counter productive lawsuit, especially since the Internet Archive has shut down the National Emergency Library.

      • YouTube Jacks Live TV Streaming Prices 30%, As Streaming Sector Starts To Resemble Good Old Cable

        There’s absolutely no doubt that the streaming TV revolution has, by and large, been a positive thing. Thanks to a ridiculous surge in streaming TV competitors, consumers now have far more options than they’ve ever had before, resulting not only in lower prices and more flexibility in TV options, but customer service that far surpasses the clumsy trash fire that is Comcast customer service.

Links 3/7/2020: TrueNAS 12 Beta 1, Librem 13 Product Line

Posted in News Roundup at 10:21 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • The Meaning Behind System76

        System76 is more than just a cool moniker. To truly learn its significance, we have to look a few hundred years into the past, to the American Revolution. Get in the car, Marty. We’re off to be revolutionaries!
        Here we are, the year 1776. The American Colonies signed the Declaration of Independence to gain freedom from the British Empire. Okay! Back in the car, Marty. Yes I’m aware we just got here, but now we’re departing… for the early 2000s!
        Ah yes, the early 2000s, where the disks are scratched and the phones flip in circles. Zoom in on a basement-dwelling revolutionary named Carl Richell. He was quite fond of GNU/Linux and its community and thought it deserved its own dedicated hardware manufacturer, so he decided to be the one to provide it. In the spirit of the American Revolution, this new hardware manufacturer was named System76 as a declaration of independence from proprietary software. Months later, the first System76 computer shipped with Ubuntu 5.10: Breezy Badger.

      • Linux Desktop Market Share Peaked to All-Time High in June

        NetMarketshare reports that the Linux Desktop market share jumped to an all-time high in June 2020.

      • Purism Launches Librem 14 Security-Focused Linux Laptop

        If you’re not a fan of Windows 10 or Apple’s decision to transition to ARM-based laptops has you less than excited, Purism has a laptop you may want to consider instead.

        Purism is a company setup to produce “freedom respecting, privacy protecting, and security focused products,” and its latest product to deliver on that promise is the Librem 14 laptop. Launched this week, the Librem 14 builds on the previous success of the Librem 13 by using a 14-inch 1080p IPS panel, but managing to fit it into the same footprint of the Librem 13 chassis thanks to smaller bezels.

      • Purism reveal their powerful privacy-focused Librem 14 laptop

        If you’re after a laptop that’s both powerful and privacy respecting, you may want to take a look over at Purism with their newly launched Librem 14 laptop. Purism say it’s the first 14″ laptop designed to protect your digital life.

        Acting as the successor to the Librem 13 and now available to pre-order, Purism mentioned that it’s been designed based on their experience with the older model along with plenty of customer feedback. While it has a slightly bigger screen, that’s definitely not all, it’s actually quite the little powerhouse.

      • Purism’s Ultra-Secure Linux Machine is Now Available in a New Size

        Purism is well-known for its privacy and security focused hardware and software while utilizing open-source technologies. Not to forget the latest Purism Librem Mini.

        After a good success with Librem 15 and 13 series laptops, Purism has unveiled Librem 14.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • Command Line Heroes: Season 5 trailer

        After four seasons of epic tales about how command line heroes have shaped the tech landscape, we’re tackling a new topic: The job itself.

        Season 5 covers the job of being a coder. How coding careers begin. How the job is done. How it’s changed. And how coders are shaping its continued evolution.

        Clive Thompson, previous guest and friend of the podcast, joins us for this 3-episode mini-season. The tech journalist shares his insights from the over 200 interviews he’s conducted with coders: programmers, developers, software engineers, sysadmins, and more.

        The first episode drops July 14, 2020. Subscribe today and sign up for the newsletter to get the latest updates.

      • Linus Torvalds Ponders The Future Of The Linux Kernel
      • Video: Two guys name Linus build a new PC

        I wonder what the final price of this is?

    • Kernel Space

      • Rethinking the futex API

        The Linux futex() system call is a bit of a strange beast. It is widely used to provide low-level synchronization support in user space, but there is no wrapper for it in the GNU C Library. Its implementation was meant to be simple, but kernel developers have despaired at the complex beast that it has become, and few dare to venture into that code. Recently, though, a new effort has begun to rework futexes; it is limited to a new system-call interface for now, but the plans go far beyond that.
        There is a wide range of synchronization options within the kernel, but there have always been fewer options in user space. For years, the only real option was System V semaphores, but it is fair to say that they have never been universally loved. Developers have long wanted a mutex-like option for user space that does not kill performance.

        Back in 2002, Rusty Russell proposed a fast user-space mutex mechanism that quickly became known as a “futex”; this feature was present in the 2.6.0 kernel release at the end of 2003 and immediately used to control concurrency for POSIX threads. The initial implementation was just a few hundred lines of code. At its core, a futex is a 32-bit word of memory shared between cooperating processes; a value of one indicates that the futex is available, while anything else marks it as unavailable. A process wishing to acquire a futex will issue a locked decrement instruction, then verify that the resulting value was zero; if so, the acquisition was successful and execution can continue. Releasing the futex is a simple matter of incrementing its value again.

      • LPC town hall #2: the kernel report

        The Linux Plumbers Conference has announced the second in a brief series of “town hall” events leading up to the full (virtual) conference starting August 24. This one features LWN editor Jonathan Corbet presenting a version of his “Kernel Report” talk covering the current and future state of the kernel-development community. This talk is scheduled for July 16 at 9:00AM US/Mountain time (8:00AM US/Pacific, 3:00PM UTC). Mark your calendars.

      • Short Topix: Potentially BIG Power Savings Coming With Linux Kernel 5.8

        As reported in an article on the Phoronix website, a 12 year old bug in the Linux kernel could be rectified by the deletion of 10 lines of code in the Linux kernel. Ok, well, it’s four lines of comments and six actual lines of code.

        As it turns out, PCIe-to-PCI (and PCI-X) bridges have not had ASPM (Active State Power Management) enabled. This, in turn, could keep the CPU in higher power states than is necessary. As a result, lots of power is potentially wasted by keeping the CPU in higher power states. Fixing this may mean that users will get longer battery life from laptops.

        Back in 2008, the ASPM code merged into the Linux kernel disabled ASPM for PCI bridges. 12 years later, that code is simply being deleted, via a patch.

        PCIe-to-PCI bridges can be commonly found on servers and workstations. There is a good possibility that the patch will be backported to other stable branches of the Linux kernel.

      • Graphics Stack

        • Mesa CI Optimization Could Provide Big Bandwidth Savings

          You may recall that earlier this year X.Org/FreeDesktop.org may have to cut CI services for developers over the cloud expenses associated with that continuous integration service for the likes of Mesa, the X.Org Server, and other components. CI usage was leading to a lot of bandwidth consumption so much so that the X.Org Foundation is facing potential ~70k USD cloud costs this year largely from their continuous integration setup.

          Since then there has been some work on better optimizing their continuous integration setup with Jenkins and within the latest Mesa Git is some further tuning.

        • A snap confined shell based on Mir: Mircade (or Mircade: An example snap confined user shell)

          There are various scenarios and reasons for packaging a Snap confined shell and a selection of applications together in a confined environment. You might have applications that work well together for a particular task; or, you may want to offer a number of alternative applications and have them available on a wide range of target platforms. Mircade illustrates this approach.

        • Intel Rocket Lake Graphics Support Ready For Liftoff With Linux 5.9

          Intel has sent in their initial batch of graphics driver updates to DRM-Next that in turn are slated to land with the Linux 5.9 cycle once its merge window opens next month.

          Most significant with this Intel DRM-Next pull is the introduction of Rocket Lake support, the Comet Lake successor that is said to be a still-14nm part but making it most exciting will be the replacement of the longstanding Gen9 graphics with Gen12 graphics. Back in May Intel posted the open-source Rocket Lake patches but came just too late for getting them reviewed/tested in time for Linux 5.8 and thus diverted for the 5.9 cycle.

        • Mike Blumenkrantz: UBO Sighting
    • Applications

      • Spotlighting the Top Open Source Crafting Tools

        Handicraft is a term that describes many different types of work where practical and decorative objects are made by hand or by using only simple tools. Depending on your location, the phrase ‘arts and crafts’ may be more commonly used.

        Collective terms for handicrafts include artisanry, handicrafting, crafting, and handicraftsmanship. This article focuses on crafting using your hands.

        This article highlights versatile open source software that aids cross-stitching and knot design. The software featured here helps individuals create their own charts from scratch or generate charts from imported pictures. Good quality open source software in this field is very sparse, fortunately there are still a few real gems. Here’s our recommendations.

      • BadWolf Is A Minimal, Privacy-Oriented Web Browser

        BadWolf is a minimalist and privacy-oriented WebKitGTK+ browser. I’ve been looking for a good minimal web browser for a long time now. And BadWolf might be the best one that I’ve tried. BadWolf is available on Linux and BSD (not available for Windows and Mac).

      • Linux at Home: Research Your Family Tree

        In this series, we look at a range of home activities where Linux can make 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.

        With lockdowns starting to be reintroduced in some countries, it looks set that social distancing will continue in many countries for the foreseeable future. Researching your family tree is a popular hobby.

        Here’s my recommended 3 programs to help you research your family tree. They are all free and open source and use open standards. Don’t fall into the trap of being locked into a particular vendor who might pull development at any time. And they all run on Linux, macOS, and Windows.

      • qrcp: Transfer Files Between Desktop And Mobile Devices Over Wi-Fi By Scanning A QR Code

        qrcp is a command line tool to transfer files from a desktop to a mobile device (and the other way around) over Wi-Fi, by scanning a QR code. It’s available for Microsoft Windows, macOS and Linux.

        The application binds a web server to the address of your Wi-Fi network interface on a random port (though the port can be specified if you want). When the QR code is scanned, the download begins (or you can open the URL scanned by the QR app in a web browser and the download will begin then). Once the transfer is completed, the web server is automatically stopped.

    • Instructionals/Technical

    • Games

      • Rebuild the ecosystem in the latest Terra Nil update

        Terra Nil is a city-builder that’s about rebuilding the ecosystem and getting everything green, rather than painting the map grey with towers full of people. Originally made during a Game Jam, it’s since been expanded that we covered before and again recently a huge update went out for it.

        You start off with nothing, just dirt and rocks and eventually need to turn it into a garden of eden. It’s actually a little challenging too, as you need to carefully work around the wasteland to produce energy and water to expand without running out of your greenery currency.

      • Narrative RPG ‘Vagrus – The Riven Realms’ enters Early Access on July 22

        Vagrus – The Riven Realms is a currently in-development narrative-focused RPG that’s currently doing a hybrid crowdfunding model on Fig and it’s getting a wider release this month.

        Currently if you pledge on the Fig campaign you get Early Access there but they’ve now confirmed the GOG and Steam release will happen on July 22. Exciting, since it’s actually quite remarkable and it’s already won awards. Mixing together open-world exploration, turn-based strategic battles, resource management and more with engrossing writing and a fantastic art style I think it’s something you’re going to love.

      • Beyond a Steel Sky now confirmed for Linux PC on July 16

        After a recent Apple Arcade release and a bit of teasing about when PC players will get it on Steam, Revolution Software have now confirmed the date for Beyond a Steel Sky.

        On July 16, Beyond a Steel Sky will launch for Linux PC and Windows PC via Steam. For a GOG release, they have not confirmed if it’s coming or any date yet. This date was confirmed on YouTube and Twitter.

        Beyond a Steel Sky is the long awaited sequel to Beneath a Steel Sky. Revolution Software actually are the original developer of Beneath a Steel Sky, plus Broken Sword: The Shadow of the Templars, Broken Sword II: The Smoking Mirror and more.

      • Dota 2 gets an ‘Anonymous Mode’ similar to options in CS:GO, TI10 Cache up

        Valve just quietly updated Dota 2 to include a new ‘Anonymous Mode’ bringing in options similar to what you can tweak in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive.

        This new mode doesn’t make you actually anonymous, so the name itself is perhaps a tiny bit misleading taken at face value. What it actually does at the tick of a box is clean up everyone else for you. For everyone not on your friends list it will (or at least it should) clear away avatars, nicknames and in-game chat messages. It will also stop guild info being sent from guilds you’re not actually in.

      • Steampunk-inspired metroidvania ‘Steamdolls’ is a big Kickstarter success

        With David Hayter (the legendary Solid Snake) taking the the lead role as The Whisper, the steampunk inspired Steamdolls has been a huge success on Kickstarter.

        SteamDolls is a steampunk inspired metroidvania game with a grimy touch of brutality. You assume the role of a cunning thief and anarchist known as “The Whisper” and make your way through heavily secured environments. Blast your way to your objective or stick to the shadows and perform a violent “backstab kill” on unsuspecting guards as you struggle with the haunting apparitions of a mesmerizing witch trying to reveal the truth about a conspiracy that could shake the very foundation of the world.

      • Top-down tactical shooter RUNNING WITH RIFLES to get a German DLC

        RUNNING WITH RIFLES, a popular tactical shooter from Osumia Games is set to get a second expansion this August focused on the Germans.

        The expansion, RUNNING WITH RIFLES: EDELWEISS heads to the European theatre of World War II, first parachuting into Sicily before moving on to the invasion of Normandy, Belgium, and more. Focussing mostly on an ‘Allied Paratrooper’ narrative, Edelweiss charts the progress of the Allies attacks across Europe. They’re saying it should release on August 27 unless there’s major issues.

      • Demonstrating Perl with Tic-Tac-Toe, Part 3

        The articles in this series have mainly focused on Perl’s ability to manipulate text. Perl was designed to manipulate and analyze. But Perl is capable of much more. More complex problems often require working with sets of data objects and indexing and comparing them in elaborate ways to compute some desired result.

        For working with sets of data objects, Perl provides arrays and hashes. Hashes are also known as associative arrays or dictionaries. This article will prefer the term hash because it is shorter.

        The remainder of this article builds on the previous articles in this series by demonstrating basic use of arrays and hashes in Perl.

      • Our quick-picks of the best Linux games of 2020 so far

        We’re halfway through the year already? Madness. Even with all the craziness of 2020 going on, lots of games still managed to get out of the door. I know, I can’t believe 2020 isn’t over yet either. Thankfully there’s plenty of games to take our minds off everything from murder hornets to COVID19 and more.

        Now we’re at the halfway point, let’s think about some of the top Linux releases of 2020 so far. This list is extremely subjective of course, this is just my personal pick on the top 15. Think of it as a starting point for good games to look at if you’re stuck for something. In no particular order, going up to June 30 and I’m cheating just a little bit by including some Early Access titles too.

      • Action-adventure ‘Sparklite’ adds Linux support in a big update

        MergeGames, together with developers Red Blue Games have now released their action-adventure Sparklite on Linux along with a fresh content update.

        Originally released towards the end of 2019, Sparklite is an action-adventure set in the whimsical and ever-changing land of Geodia. With gorgeous pixel art and a top-down perspective, you battle foes using an arsenal of gadgets, guns, and gear. If you played and enjoyed Moonlighter, you would probably feel right at home with Sparklite too.

      • Best Racing Games for Android

        When it comes to video gaming, racing is the most popular genre, whether it is mobile gaming, pc gaming, or on any other gaming console. Racing games on Android have so much competition between them and the genre is crowded with tons of racing games. Every racing game has its own unique features and every gamer has his or her own preferences. In this genre, there is a large number of excellent free-to-play and paid games available for mobile users. This article covers the best racing games, in a variety of settings and with many different features for each unique user’s needs.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • Bringing modern process management to the desktop

          A desktop environment’s sole role is to connect users to their applications. This includes everything from launching apps to actually displaying apps but also managing them and making sure they run fairly. Everyone is familiar the concept of a “Task manager” (like ksysguard), but over time they haven’t kept up with the way applications are being developed or the latest developments from Linux.

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • Is GNOME or Unity the desktop for you?

          I wrote about the fantastic new(ish) distribution Ubuntu Unity, and that post exposed serious division and opinions surrounding the Linux desktop. It wasn’t so much an “I dislike Unity or GNOME,” as it was more along the lines of full-blown hatred for one or the other. At least on one side of the spectrum–the other side was fandom.

          It’s clearly a love or hate relationship with these desktops.

          I understand such an issue is a matter of taste. I prefer a modern take on the desktop that performs in a very efficient way, but many others prefer the old-school desktop metaphors, found in the likes of Cinnamon, Mate, and KDE.

          Neither opinion is wrong–that’s the beauty of opinion.

          I’m taking another approach to the comparison between GNOME and the Unity desktop. I highlight the pros and cons of each and then suggest which users would be the best fit for either desktop. There is no scientific method going on here. I’ve been using and covering Linux for more than 20 years, so it’s all about experience and knowing how the evolution of the Linux user has changed over the years. With that said, let’s take a look at GNOME and Unity.

        • Georges Basile Stavracas Neto: This Month in Mutter & GNOME Shell | May and June 2020

          The volunteers and contributors working on Mutter and GNOME Shell have been busy in the past couple of months — so much so that we didn’t have bandwidth to write the May development report!

          As a consequence, this development summary will have an above average number of changes to highlight.

        • Jonas Ådahl: Splitting up the Frame Clock

          Readers be advised, this is somewhat of a deep dive into the guts of Mutter. With that out in the open, lets start!

          Not too long ago mutter saw a merge request land, that has one major aim: split up the frame clock so that when using the Wayland session, each CRTC is driven by its own frame clock. In effect the goal here is that e.g. a 144 Hz monitor and a 60 Hz monitor being active in the same session will not have to wait for each other to update, and that the space they occupy on the screen will draw at their own pace. A window on the 144 Hz monitor will paint at 144 Hz, and mutter will composite to the monitor at 144 Hz, while a window on the 60 Hz monitor will paint at 60 Hz and Mutter will composite to the monitor at 60 Hz.

        • GNOME Shell + Mutter Off To A Good Start For Summer 2020

          The GNOME Shell and Mutter have seen a lot of work come together nicely over the past two months.

          The GNOME Shell blog is out with their recap of development work that landed over the months of May and June.

        • Important Patches Land To Improve GNOME’s Multi-Monitor Experience With High Refresh Rates

          If you have say a 144Hz gaming monitor as well as a conventional 60Hz secondary display or any other multi-monitor configuration with different refresh rates, there is now another reason to get excited for GNOME 3.38.


          This is very important for improving the multi-monitor experience with such configurations as up to now capping the refresh rate to match is a less than desirable experience. This work landed today in Mutter for September’s release of GNOME 3.38. This next release is shaping up to be quite exciting with the plethora of optimizations to already land thus far. It is important to note that this multi-monitor improvement only benefits the GNOME Wayland session and not under X11.

        • Alejandro Domínguez: Refactoring Fractal: Remove Backend (II)

          So the time came for removing the Backend struct finally! The bits that were left in the previous patch have been removed, which were not just state but a ThreadPool and a cache for some info. Those were fitted in AppOp without too much thought on consistency of it.

          But what does this actually mean for the internal structure of the code?

          The result is that any state or utility that was needed for requests and modifying the UI is held only from a single place in the app. With it, the loop in Backend has been removed as well, and instead of sending messages to the receiver loop from the backend, those are sent from a spawned thread (to keep the UI thread unlocked) that sends the HTTP request directly and retrieves the response. Put in a simpler way, I replaced message passing to the backend loop with spawning threads, which was done anyways in the loop to be able to have multiple requests at the same time.

          I acknowledge that doing this kind parallelism with system threads in 2020 is a very crude way of doing the task, to say the least, but using coroutines requires a significant amount of work in other areas of the app right now.

        • GSoC 2020: the first milestone

          During the community bonding period, I had a video call with my absolutely amazing mentor Alberto, who told me about GNOME culture, and about his inspiring journey with GNOME as contributor. In the last month, I have been welcomed by the community and am very proud to be contributing to GNOME.
          Here’s a summary of the technical work that has been done in the last month.

        • Marcus Lundblad: Summer Maps

          Since it’s been a while since the last post, I thought I should share a little update about some going ons with Maps.

    • Distributions

      • A new EFI administration tool in Zenwalk

        Today : a new tool to manage EFI boot entries has been added.

      • Reviews

        • Austrumi Linux Is Loaded With Language Laziness

          Austrumi Linux contains all the necessary basic programs for work and entertainment. It boots from CD, flash drive or a hard drive installation and can be used on servers and workstations.

          Austrumi Linux is not well known, but it checks most of the usability boxes. The only technical requirement is the ability to burn the ISO to a DVD or USB.

          Do not expect much from the Austrumi web site. It is poorly designed and has no information about using the distro or getting help. Several of the pages are blank or not there.

          Beyond that process, just turn on the computer and use Austrumi. No installation is needed. Nor is there any need for system configurations.

          Of course, that all depends on whether Latvia is your native language.

        • Linux Mint 20 “Ulyana” Review: The Most Complete OS For Everyone

          Last week, Linux Mint founder Clement Lefebvre released the latest long-term version — Linux Mint 20 “Ulyana.” Mint 20 is built on top of the latest Ubuntu 20.04 LTS “Focal Fossa” which will now be supported until 2025.

          Over the years, Linux Mint has grown as one of the most suitable Linux distributions for beginners alongside Ubuntu. With Mint 20, it has embarked on a new version with a number of enhancements. Hence, in this article, we’ll walk you through Linux Mint 20 which we practically tested on a bare machine.

      • New Releases

        • GParted Live System Gets New Release, Now Powered by Linux Kernel 5.7

          Synced with the Debian Sid (Unstable) software repositories as of July 1st, 2020, the GParted Live 1.1.0-3 release is now available for download, the first to be powered by the latest Linux 5.7 kernel series. Linux kernel 5.7.6 is included by default to provide users with support for newer hardware.

          Besides the kernel bump, the new release is also here to address several bugs present in previous versions. For example, it fixes a regression discovered in version 1.1.0-2 (i686) that made the GParted Live system to fail to boot on 64-bit UEFI machines.

        • IPFire 2.25 – Core Update 147 is available for testing

          With this week’s release of Core Update 146, we already have made the next one available for testing. It contains a vast amount of package updates and brings some security updates.

          Although this update is rather small in number of changes, it is rather large on disk due to the many Linux firmware files that we are shipping. Please help us testing this release to make sure it won’t introduce any new regressions into IPFire.

      • BSD

        • TrueNAS 12.0-BETA1 Release Announcement

          FreeNAS (and now TrueNAS) Fans! I’m pleased to announce the availability of our first BETA1 for the upcoming 12.0 TrueNAS CORE / Enterprise release.

        • TrueNAS 12 Beta 1 Released With Much Improved ZFS, Better AMD Ryzen CPU Support

          As what was formerly FreeNAS, the first beta of TrueNAS CORE 12.0 is available for testing of this BSD-based operating system for NAS devices and other storage setups.

          The TrueNAS 12.0 Beta 1 both for the CORE and Enterprise editions includes much improved ZFS support with now relying upon the code that’s going to be released as OpenZFS 2.0, support for ZFS async copy-on-write, native ZFS dataset encryption, ZFS user quota capabilities, and more.

      • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandriva/OpenMandriva Family

        • [PCLinuxOS] Screenshot Showcase
        • PCLinuxOS Family Member Spotlight – Mr. Lumbergh

          Why and when did you start using Linux?
          2005. The security issues with Windows XP were really blowing up at the time, so when I ordered a new computer for school I made sure to do so with a second drive planning on giving ‘Nix a try. I started off on Ubuntu on that machine, and when I got a laptop a couple of years later I wanted to try something different and ran through a couple distros before settling on PCLinuxOS. It’s become my everyday driver, and I now use Linux most of the time on my own machines simply because I like it better. I’m currently running Debian 10 and PCLinuxOS.

          What specific equipment do currently use with PCLinuxOS?
          This desktop has an AMD Ryzen 7 3800X, Radeon 580X graphics, Asus X570 mobo, and 64GB of G-Skill Ripjaws RAM. I also have a Nektar Impact GX61 MIDI controller keyboard and Focusrite Scarlett 4i4 audio interface connected to this machine since it’s my production rig. I also have PCLinuxOS installed on a hand-me-down laptop (Lenovo Z580) that runs only Linux.

          Do you feel that your use of Linux influences the reactions you receive from your computer peers or family? If so, how?
          I’m not sure how much using Linux has to do with it, but I’ve certainly become the tech support for my family… Outside of a few die-hards, I find that folks generally aren’t too hung up on what OS you use. I use Windows, MacOS, and Linux daily and think each has its place, though I’d likely never use Windows at all on my own boxes if WINE support for games and a few audio programs was better.

      • SUSE/OpenSUSE

        • openSUSE Leap 15.2 Adds AI Machine Learning

          For openSUSE users, there’s some very exciting news for the release of the latest iteration, 15.2. This new take on the platform includes several new packages into the mix that add both artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning. The packages that bring these two new features include Tensorflow (a framework for deep learning), PyTorch (a machine learning library), and ONNX (an open format for machine learning models that provides interoperability in the AI tool space).

        • openSUSE Leap releases version 15.2 with new AI and ML tools

          Community Linux distribution openSUSE Leap has released version 15.2, which includes a number of artificial intelligence and machine learning packages, security updates, bug fixes, network enhancements, and many new features.

          A statement from the release team said the new version would run on the x86-64, ARM64 and POWER systems. “Leap 15.2 represents a huge step forward in the artificial intelligence space,” said Marco Varlese, a developer and member of the project.

          “I am super excited that openSUSE end-users can now finally consume machine learning / deep learning frameworks and applications via our repositories to enjoy a stable and up-to-date ecosystem.”

          Some of the AI and ML packages are Tensorflow which is a framework for deep learning that can be used by data scientists to provide numerical computations and data-flow graphs; PyTorch, which is for both server and compute resources to accelerate power users’ ability to prototype a project and move it to a production deployment; ONNX, an open format built to represent machine learning models and provide interoperability in the AI tool space; and Grafana and Prometheus both of which open up new possibilities for analytical experts.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • Fedora 33 SwapOnZRam Test Day 2020-07-06

          The Workstation Working Group has proposed a change for Fedora 33 to use swap on zram. This would put swap space on a compressed RAM drive instead of a disk partition. The QA team is organizing a test day on Monday, July 06, 2020. Refer to the wiki page for links to the test cases and materials you’ll need to participate. Read below for details.

        • F32-20200701 Updated Live isos released

          The Fedora Respins SIG is pleased to announce the latest release of Updated F32-20200701-Live ISOs, carrying the 5.6.19-300 kernel.

          This set of updated isos will save considerable amounts of updates after install. ((for new installs.)(New installs of Workstation have about 900+MB of updates)).

          A huge thank you goes out to irc nicks dowdle, dbristow, nasirhm, Southern-Gentleman for testing these iso.

        • Build a simple cloud-native change data capture pipeline

          Change data capture (CDC) is a well-established software design pattern for a system that monitors and captures data changes so that other software can respond to those events. Using KafkaConnect, along with Debezium Connectors and the Apache Camel Kafka Connector, we can build a configuration-driven data pipeline to bridge traditional data stores and new event-driven architectures.

          This article walks through a simple example.

        • OpenPOWER Reboot – New Director, New Silicon Partners, Leveraging Linux Foundation Connections

          Earlier this week the OpenPOWER Foundation announced the contribution of IBM’s A21 Power processor core design to the open source community. Roughly this time last year, IBM announced open sourcing its Power instruction set (ISA) and Open Coherent Accelerator Processor Interface (OpenCAPI) and Open Memory Interface (OMI). That’s also when IBM said OpenPOWER would become a Linux Foundation entity. Then a few weeks ago, OpenPOWER named a new executive director, James Kulina.

          Change is afoot at the OpenPOWER Foundation. Will it be enough to prompt wider (re)consideration and adoption of the OpenPOWER platform and ecosystem?

        • Red Hat Powers the Future of Supercomputing with Red Hat Enterprise Linux

          Fugaku is the first Arm-based system to take first place on the TOP500 list, highlighting Red Hat’s commitment to the Arm ecosystem from the data center to the high-performance computing laboratory. Sierra, Summit and Marconi-100 all boast IBM POWER9-based infrastructure with NVIDIA GPUs; combined, these four systems produce more than 680 petaflops of processing power to fuel a broad range of scientific research applications.

          In addition to enabling this immense computation power, Red Hat Enterprise Linux also underpins six out of the top 10 most power-efficient supercomputers on the planet according to the Green500 list. Systems on the list are measured in terms of both performance results and the power consumed achieving those. When it comes to sustainable supercomputing the premium is put on finding a balanced approach for the most energy-efficient performance.

        • Red Hat Powers the Future of Supercomputing with Red Hat Enterprise Linux

          Modern supercomputers are no longer purpose-built monoliths constructed from expensive bespoke components. Each supercomputer deployment powered by Red Hat Enterprise Linux uses hardware that can be purchased and integrated into any datacenter, making it feasible for organizations to use enterprise systems that are similar to those breaking scientific barriers. Regardless of the underlying hardware, Red Hat Enterprise Linux provides the common control plane for supercomputers to be run, managed and maintained in the same manner as traditional IT systems.

          Red Hat Enterprise Linux also opens supercomputing applications up to advancements in enterprise IT, including Linux containers. Working closely in open source communities with organizations like the Supercomputing Containers project, Red Hat is helping to drive advancements to make Podman, Skopeo and Buildah, components of Red Hat’s distributed container toolkit, more accessible for building and deploying containerized supercomputing applications.

        • Red Hat Enterprise Linux serves as operating system for supercomputers

          Red Hat announced that Red Hat Enterprise Linux provides the operating system backbone for the top three supercomputers in the world and four out of the top 10, according to the newest TOP500 ranking.

          Already serving as a catalyst for enterprise innovation across the hybrid cloud, these rankings also show that the world’s leading enterprise Linux platform can deliver a foundation to meet even the most demanding computing environments.

        • Lessons learned from standing up a front-end development program at IBM

          In 2015, we created the FED@IBM program to support front-end developers and give them the opportunity to learn new skills and teach other devs about their specific areas of expertise. While company programs often die out due to lack of funding, executive backing, interest, or leadership, our community is thriving in spite of losing the funding, executive support, and resources we had at the program’s inception.

          What’s the secret behind the success of this grassroots employee support program? As I have been transitioning leadership of the FED@IBM Program and Community, I have been reflecting on our program’s success and how to define how we have been able to sustain the program.

      • Debian Family

        • Utkarsh Gupta: FOSS Activites in June 2020

          This was my 16th month of contributing to Debian. I became a DM in late March last year and a DD last Christmas! \o/

          This month was a little intense. I did a a lot of different kinds of things in Debian this month. Whilst most of my time went on doing security stuff, I also sponosred a bunch of packages.

        • Mike Gabriel: My Work on Debian LTS (June 2020)

          In June 2020, I have worked on the Debian LTS project for 8 hours (of 8 hours planned).

        • Ben Hutchings: Debian LTS work, June 2020

          I was assigned 20 hours of work by Freexian’s Debian LTS initiative, and worked all 20 hours this month.

          I sent a final request for testing for the next update to Linux 3.16 in jessie. I also prepared an update to Linux 4.9, included in both jessie and stretch. I completed backporting of kernel changes related to CVE-2020-0543, which was still under embargo, to Linux 3.16.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Ubuntu Phone Recap 2020

          I found my community at Mastodon. They share a lot about Ubuntu Phone – particularly Ubuntu Touch operating system and its current maintainer The UBPorts Project and the hardware maker PINE64. Fortunately unexpected, two interesting things come – the arrival of Volla and also Fairphone which want to be the next Ubuntu Phone and powered with the Touch. These are interesting to cover in a short summary so this article is for you who are interested in Ubuntu Phone once again. Let’s go!

        • Ubuntu 19.10 Reaches End of Life This Month, Plan Those Upgrades Soon

          Any enthusiasts engaging on the extant edition past this date will need (read: want) to expedite plans to emigrate to the next available release, which is the fabulously fast Ubuntu 20.04 ‘Focal Fossa’.

          The Ubuntu 19.10 release arrived on October 17, 2019. As a non-LTS release it gets 9 months of on-going app updates and security patches.

          And those 9 months are almost up.

          After this date you won’t get new versions of Firefox or anything else, and many third-party developers stop building packages for unsupported Ubuntu releases.

        • Ubuntu 19.10 (Eoan Ermine) Will Reach End of Life on July 17th, 2020

          Launched last year on October 17th, Ubuntu 19.10 (Eoan Ermine) shipped with the Linux 5.3 kernel series, the GNOME 3.34 desktop environment, initial support for ZFS as the root file system via the installer, support for DLNA sharing, WPA3 support, as well as Yaru light and dark themes.

          Since it’s not an LTS (Long Term Support) release, Ubuntu 19.10 was mainly a testbed for Canonical to try new features. This also translates to the release not having any major changes and receiving only 9 months of support.

          Therefore, on July 17th, 2020, Canonical will no longer support Ubuntu 19.10. This means that they will cease to provide software updates and security fixes for the distribution.

        • Linux Mint 20.0 Released

          Linux Mint 20.0 is now available with its traditional separate releases based on different desktop environments. I have just upgraded my LMDE4 to latest Linux Kernel, so won’t be trying Mint 20.0 anytime soon. What about you?

        • There’s No Ubuntu 32-bit ISO. What Now?

          You’ve searched high and low but can’t find an Ubuntu 32-bit ISO. That’s because it doesn’t exist. Canonical decided to drop support for 32-bit computers, so they stopped releasing 32-bit ISOs since Ubuntu 18.04. And they’re not the only ones.

          Initially, this may sound strange since Linux is famous for supporting older hardware. And yet, it’s justified by the last 32-bit CPU being produced more than a decade ago.

          If your PC is so old that it doesn’t support 64-bit software, you have only three possible paths forward. Let’s see your options.

        • Make Ubuntu 20.4 Look Like MacOS [You Won't Believe the End Result]

          A step by step, detailed video tutorial showing how to make Ubuntu look like macOS. Perfect example of the customization power of Linux desktop.

        • A blast from the past – Shutter

          The wheel of software turns, and apps come and go. But the end of development does not always mean the end of usefulness. Sometimes, programs stubbornly remain around, offering a complete experience that can withstand the test of time.

          Several weeks ago, we talked about how you can preserve old applications with snaps. Today, we would like to expand on this concept and talk about Shutter, a feature-rich screenshot application that was rather popular several years ago. Its development has stalled in recent years, and it has become more difficult to install and run it on newer versions of various Linux distributions. But Shutter has gained a new life as a snap.

        • Encryption at rest with Ceph

          Do you have a big data center? Do you have terabytes of confidential data stored in that data center? Are you worried that your data might be exposed to malicious attacks? One of the most prominent security features of storage solutions is encryption at rest. This blog will explain this in more detail and how it is implemented in Charmed Ceph, Canonical’s software-defined storage solution.

        • Ubuntu 20.10 Moving Ahead In Restricting Access To dmesg

          Following the discussions last month over restricting access to dmesg / kernel logs on Ubuntu in matching the behavior of other Linux distributions for better security practices, Ubuntu 20.10 indeed is moving forward with these plans where dmesg access would require root privileges.

          In recent times more Linux distributions have been restricting access to dmesg over the possibility of kernel addresses being leaked or other potentially sensitive bits while as it stands now on Ubuntu there is free reign on multi-user systems to have unprivileged users read dmesg output.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Jussi Pakkanen: What is best in open source projects?

        Open source project maintainers have a reputation of being grumpy and somewhat rude at times. This is a not unexpected as managing an open source project can be a tiring experience. This can lead to exhaustion and thus to sometimes being a bit too blunt.

        But let’s not talk about that now.

        Instead, let’s talk about the best of times, the positive outcomes, the things that really make you happy to be running an open source project. Patches, both bug fixes and new features are like this. So is learning about all the places people are using your project. Even better if they are using it ways you could not even imagine when you started. All of these things are great, but they are not the best.

        The greatest thing is when people you have never met or even heard of before come to your project and then on their own initiative take on leadership in some subsection in the project.

      • How an open project’s governance model evolves

        As we continue renovating the Open Organization community, we’ve been asking hard questions about how we want that community to function. What do we expect of one another, and of the new contributors yet to join us? How will we work best together? And how will we keep one another accountable for achieving our shared goals?


        Through this conversation, we’ve been able to update the Open Organization project description and vision.

        That vision initially took shape nearly five years ago, when the Open Organization Ambassador team first formed. At the time, Red Hat community architects Jason Hibbets and Bryan Behrenshausen drafted a document describing what a community of passionate advocates for open organizational principles might look like. The vision was entirely aspirational, describing what could be—rather than what was. It served as a beacon to attract passionate contributors to a still-nascent project.

        As soon as the community did attract new members, however, those members promptly wrote their own mission and vision for the Open Organization project, articulating their identity and purpose. And as we’ve grown, we’ve realized that we’re all committed to even more than we originally described. Our community is adept at translating open organization principles for various audiences and contexts, and at helping different communities connect to our language and culture through their own languages and cultures.

      • Copyright enforcement with Dr. Miriam Ballhausen

        We invited Dr. Miriam Ballhausen to talk with us about copyright enforcement. She is a German lawyer with the focus on software, data protection, copyright law and specifically Free Software copyright. This is the sixth regular episode of the Software Freedom Podcast for which we invite experts from our community.

        In this sixth episode of the Software Freedom Podcast we talk about Free Software copyright enforcement with our guest Dr. Miriam Ballhausen. Dr. Miriam Ballhausen is a German laywer and is specialised in Free Software copyright questions. Together we cover the basics about Free Software licensing and discuss, how Free Software copyright can be enforced, what are the steps to enforce it and why it is often enforced in Germany. We also explore how the REUSE project could help with being in compliance with Free Software licenses.

      • IBM Has Open Sourced Its Edge Device Platform and Wishes AWS and Microsoft Got On Board

        IBM’s Open Horizon is meant to make it easier to manage thousands of IoT devices as edge computing nodes.

      • Open-source contact tracing, part 1

        The main goal of COVID-19 tracing applications is to notify users if they have been recently in contact with an infected person, so that they can isolate themselves or seek out testing. The creation of the applications is usually supported by governments, with the development performed by health authorities and research institutions. The Wikipedia page for COVID-19 apps lists (as of early June 2020) at least 38 countries with such applications in use or under development, and at least eight framework initiatives.

        The applications trace the people that the user has had contact with for a significant period (for example, 15 minutes) with close physical proximity (a distance around one meter). The complete tracing system usually consists of an application for mobile phones and the server software.

        For the distance measurement and detecting the presence of other users, GPS and Bluetooth are the technical solutions used in practice. GPS only appears in a small number of projects because it does not have enough precision, especially inside buildings. It also does not work in enclosed spaces like underground parking and subways.

        Most countries have chosen to develop a distance measurement using Bluetooth, generally the Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) variant, which uses less energy than the classical version. This is important as the distance measurement is done by mobile phones, and so Bluetooth will need to be active most of the time.

        The Bluetooth protocol was not designed for these kinds of tasks, though, so research has been done on ways to measure distance accurately. A report [PDF] from the Pan-European Privacy-Preserving Proximity Tracing project shows that it is possible to measure distance using BLE signal strength, specifically received signal strength indication (RSSI). In a contact-tracing system using Bluetooth, the distance measurement is made by the two phones communicating using a specific message format. Since the formats differ between applications, communication is only guaranteed to work if both phones are using the same application.

      • More alternatives to Google Analytics

        Last week, we introduced the privacy concerns with using Google Analytics (GA) and presented two lightweight open-source options: GoatCounter and Plausible. Those tools are useful for site owners who need relatively basic metrics. In this second article, we present several heavier-weight GA replacements for those who need more detailed analytics. We also look at some tools that produce analytics data based on web-server-access logs, GoAccess, in particular.

      • Productivity Software/LibreOffice/Calligra

        • LibreOffice 6.4.5 Released with over 100 Bug Fixes, Now Ready for Enterprise Deployments

          LibreOffice 6.4.5 comes one and a half months after LibreOffice 6.4.4 and it’s packed with lots of bug fixes across all core components. A total of 106 bugs have been addressed in this new point release, as documented here and here.

          But, the good news that I would like to share with you today is that the LibreOffice 6.4 office suite series is now finally ready for enterprise deployments in production environments as it’s thoroughly tested and includes several months of bug fixes.

          Those of you using the LibreOffice 6.3 office suite series in enterprise environments should upgrade to LibreOffice 6.4.5 as soon as possible. You can download the latest release for Linux, Mac, and Windows platforms right now from the official website.

        • Announcement of LibreOffice 6.4.5

          The Document Foundation announces the availability of LibreOffice 6.4.5, the 5th minor release of the LibreOffice 6.4 family, targeted at technology enthusiasts and power users. LibreOffice 6.4.5 includes over 100 bug fixes and improvements to document compatibility and interoperability with software from other vendors.

          LibreOffice 6.4.5 is optimized for use in production environments, even by more conservative users, as it now includes several months of work on bug fixes. Users of LibreOffice 6.3.6 and previous versions should start planning the update to LibreOffice 6.4.5, as the new major LibreOffice release – tagged 7.0 – is going to be announced in early August.


          LibreOffice 6.4.5 is immediately available from the following link: https://www.libreoffice.org/download/. Minimum requirements are specified on the download page. TDF builds of the latest LibreOffice Online source code are available as Docker images: https://hub.docker.com/r/libreoffice/online/.

      • FSF

        • GNU Projects

          • GNU Taler news: Exchange independent security audit report published

            We received a grant from NLnet foundation to pay for an external security audit of the GNU Taler exchange cryptography, code and documentation. CodeBlau now concluded their audit. You can find the final report here. We have compiled a preliminary response detailing what changes we have already made and which changes we are still planning to make in the future. We thank CodeBlau for their work, and NLnet and the European Commission’s Horizion 2020 NGI initiative for funding this work.

      • Programming/Development

        • GnuCOBOL 3.1rc-1 on alpha.gnu.org

          While this version is a release-randidate (with an expected full release within 3 months) it is the most stable and complete free COBOL compiler ever available.

        • 6 best practices for managing Git repos

          This is arguably Rule Zero for a secure Git repository. As a project maintainer, whether you started it yourself or you’ve adopted it from someone else, it’s your job to know the contents of your own repository. You might not have a memorized list of every file in your codebase, but you need to know the basic components of what you’re managing. Should a stray file appear after a few dozen merges, you’ll be able to spot it easily because you won’t know what it’s for, and you’ll need to inspect it to refresh your memory. When that happens, review the file and make sure you understand exactly why it’s necessary.


          Third-party libraries are no exception to this rule. While it’s one of the many benefits of open source that you can freely re-use and re-distribute code you didn’t write, there are many good reasons not to house a third-party library in your own repository. First of all, you can’t exactly vouch for a third party, unless you’ve reviewed all of its code (and future merges) yourself. Secondly, when you copy third party libraries into your Git repo, it splinters focus away from the true upstream source. Someone confident in the library is technically only confident in the master copy of the library, not in a copy lying around in a random repo. If you need to lock into a specific version of a library, either provide developers with a reasonable URL the release your project needs or else use Git Submodule.

        • Scala contributor: Open source and diversity key to tackling dev skills shortage

          Diversity and open source can help fix the software developer skills gap, argued Scala contributor and Carnegie Mellon Assistant Professor Heather Miller in a keynote talk at the virtual Open Source Summit North America.

          Miller examined the IT and computer-related skills shortage from a US perspective. “The Department of Labor statistics show that in 2017 there were over 500,000 computing-related jobs open in the US that were not filled. They project that this number is going to get a lot higher. If this trend continues, it’s obvious that there’s no way these posts can be filled by computer science graduates.”

          There are, however, many new people coming into the profession, not necessarily computer science graduates, and a notable point of recent StackOverflow research is the large number of respondents who consider themselves professional and have been coding for less than five years – 39.6 per cent in the latest survey.

          “The years of experience of professional software engineers, that is going down,” said Miller.

        • Evgeni Golov: Automatically renaming the default git branch to “devel”

          It seems GitHub is planning to rename the default brach for newly created repositories from “master” to “main”. It’s incredible how much positive PR you can get with a one line configuration change, while still working together with the ICE.

          However, this post is not about bashing GitHub.

          Changing the default branch for newly created repositories is good. And you also should do that for the ones you create with git init locally. But what about all the repositories out there? GitHub surely won’t force-rename those branches, but we can!

          Ian will do this as he touches the individual repositories, but I tend to forget things unless I do them immediately…

        • Web-augmented graphics overlay broadcasting with WPE and GStreamer

          To address the first point, WPE founding engineer, Žan Doberšek enabled software rasterizing support in WPE and its FDO backend. This is great because it allows WPE to run on machines without GPU (like continuous integration builders, test bots) but also “in the cloud” where machines with GPU are less affordable than bare metal! Following up, I enabled this feature in GstWPE. The source element caps template now has video/x-raw, in addition to video/x-raw(memory:GLMemory). To force swrast, you need to set the LIBGL_ALWAYS_SOFTWARE=true environment variable. The downside of swrast is that you need a good CPU. Of course it depends on the video resolution and framerate you want to target.

          On the latency front, I decided to switch from RTMP to WebRTC! This W3C spec isn’t only about video chat! With WebRTC, sub-second live one-to-many broadcasting can be achieved, without much efforts, given you have a good SFU. For this demo I chose Janus, because its APIs are well documented, and it’s a cool project! I’m not sure it would scale very well in large deployments, but for my modest use-case, it fits very well.

          Janus has a plugin called video-room which allows multiple participants to chat. But then imagine a participant only publishing its video stream and multiple “clients” connecting to that room, without sharing any video or audio stream, one-to-many broadcasting. As it turns out, GStreamer applications can already connect to this video-room plugin using GstWebRTC! A demo was developed by tobiasfriden and saket424 in Python, it recently moved to the gst-examples repository. As I kind of prefer to use Rust nowadays (whenever I can anyway) I ported this demo to Rust, it was upstreamed in gst-examples as well. This specific demo streams the video test pattern to a Janus instance.

          Adapting this Janus demo was then quite trivial. By relying on a similar video mixer approach I used for the first GstWPE demo, I had a GstWPE-powered WebView streaming to Janus.

        • PHP releases and support

          PHP is used extensively on the web. How new features, security fixes, and bug fixes make their way into a release is important to understand. Likewise, understanding what can be expected in community support for previous releases is even more important. Since PHP-based sites are typically exposed to the Internet, keeping up-to-date is not something a security-minded administrator can afford to ignore.

          PHP has not always had a formal release process and corresponding time frame for support; the official policy the project has now wasn’t adopted until 2011. Before then, the decisions of when to make releases and how long to support them were both made less formally by key members of the community.

          Let’s start with PHP versioning, where the project is more or less dependable. The versioning of PHP releases aims to follow Semantic Versioning. Major releases such as 3.0 and 4.0 always come with backward-compatibility breaks. Minor versions, such as 4.1 and 4.2, fix bugs and add new features that are backward-compatible in relation to the major release. Patch releases, such as 4.1.1, tend to be strictly for important bug fixes and should never break backward compatibility.

        • Intel AMX Support Begins Landing In LLVM

          Following Intel publishing the initial Advanced Matrix Extensions (AMX) documentation at the end of June, the open-source/Linux bring-up has continued for these new CPU instruction set extensions set to premiere with Sapphire Rapids next year.

        • Intel oneDNN 2.0 Deep Neural Network Library Working On More Performance Tuning

          Intel’s open-source oneDNN library, which was formerly known as MKL-DNN and DNNL for this deep neural network library now living under the oneAPI umbrella, continues working on some big performance advancements for its 2.0 release.

          Intel on Thursday released oneDNN 2.0 Beta 7 and with it comes more Intel CPU performance optimizations around convolutional neural networks, binary primitive performance for the broadcast case, BFloat16 and FP32 weights gradient convolutions, INT8 convolutions with 1×1 kernel and spatial strides, and a variety of other specific areas within this deep learning library seeing optimizations.

        • Terminology Debate

          • Tech Companies Take Steps to Change Exclusionary Language

            In an article on The New Stack in June, Jennifer Riggins discussed recent decisions by some tech companies to phase out the use of exclusionary language. For example, Android and GitHub have announced that they will switch from the use of “master” to “main,” and other organizations and projects are following suit.

            These steps stem in part from efforts to show tangible support for Black Lives Matter. At times, however, Riggins said, “it is virtue signaling, a relatively easy way to show a company supports the movement. In still other cases, employees have been long wanting to make a change to the outdated language, and now is the perfect time to appeal to decision-makers about this.”

          • Red Hat making open source code more inclusive by eradicating ‘problematic language’

            Open source has always been about differing voices coming together to share ideas, iterate, challenge the status quo, solve problems, and innovate quickly.

            That ethos is rooted in inclusion and the opportunity for everyone to meaningfully contribute, and open source technology is better because of the diverse perspectives and experiences that are represented in its communities.

            Red Hat is fortunate to be able to see the impact of this collaboration daily, and this is why our business has also always been rooted in these values.

          • Words Matter: Finally, Tech Looks at Removing Exclusionary Language

            This month the tech industry’s lexicon is seeing a small but significant shift: Common technical phrases, most notably “Master/Slave” and “Whitelist/Blacklist” that have been red-flagged as offensive, or even racist, sometimes for decades, are getting updates. Android and GitHub announced this week that it is starting to changing “master” designation to “main,” alongside Android, Gitlab and Splunk. Many orgs are also looking at replacing the concept of “whitelist” in both its documentation and in its APIs. Other companies and open source projects are following suit.

            This work is in part to take another semantic and moral stand that Black Lives Matter. And, at times, it is virtue signaling, a relatively easy way to show a company supports the movement. In still other cases, employees have been long wanting to make a change to the outdated language, and now is the perfect time to appeal to decision-makers about this.

        • Python

          • EuroPython 2020: Our keynotes

            Conference tickets are available on our registration page. We hope to see lots of you at the conference from July 23-26. Rest assured that we’ll make this a great event again — even within the limitations of running the conference online.

          • Full Stack Python: How to Report Errors in Flask Web Apps with Sentry

            Flask web applications are highly customizable by developers thanks to the framework’s extension-based architecture, but that flexibility can sometimes lead to more errors when you run the application due to rough edges between the libraries.

            Reporting errors is crucial to running a well-functioning Flask web application, so this tutorial will guide you through adding a free, basic Sentry configuration to a fresh Flask project.

          • PyCharm EAP#3 is out!

            PyCharm EAP #3 is out and it’s almost releasing time!! If you are like us you are also looking forward to the end of the month! We have been talking about new features for the last month and today we will take a deeper look into two very exciting ones. For the full list, check our release notes.

          • The Home Stretch – Building SaaS #63

            In this episode, we return to the homeschool application that I’m building. I’m in the final stretch of changes that need to happen to make the product minimally viable. We worked on a template, wrote some model methods, and did a bunch of automated testing.

            We started by adding students to the context of the students index page. With the students in the context, we updated the index page to display the list of students.

            After the students were available, we had to check their enrolled status in a school year. That logic doesn’t belong in the template so we worked out the changes needed for the view.

          • py.CheckIO: Find out more about Python by searching the solutions

            As you might have noticed, for two weeks we haven’t made our usual newsletter mailouts. But we definitely weren’t wasting any time. CheckiO team was actually preparing some important updates, which we want to share with you.

            That’s a common knowledge that CheckiO originated from the idea of practical learning through shared solutions. This means that in our portals you can learn not only by solving the coding tasks, but also by checking out and analyzing the solutions made by other users. In view of this, our next step became a logical continuation of this ideology.

            Since the creation of CheckiO, we’ve gathered nearly half a million of different solutions. Now, using the Solution Search feature, which becomes available from the 2nd Level, you can easily find any solution you need. Like you can look for the usage examples of an itertools.groupby function. You just need to enter it into the search field and you’ll see multiple solutions. Or you can type ‘itertools’ and you’ll be presented with all of the solutions where this module had been used. It’s fast, efficient and quite handy. The feature is still in the beta testing mode though.

          • Data science workflows on Kubernetes with Kubeflow pipelines: Part 2

            Kubeflow Pipelines are a great way to build portable, scalable machine learning workflows. It is a part of the Kubeflow project that aims to reduce the complexity and time involved with training and deploying machine learning models at scale. For more on Kubeflow, read our Kubernetes for data science: meet Kubeflow post.

            In this blog series, we demystify Kubeflow pipelines and showcase this method to produce reusable and reproducible data science.

            In Part 1, we covered WHY Kubeflow brings the right standardization to data science workflows. Now, let’s see HOW you can accomplish that with Kubeflow Pipelines.

            In Part 2 of this blog series, we’ll work on building your first Kubeflow Pipeline as you gain an understanding of how it’s used to deploy reusable and reproducible ML pipelines.

    • Standards/Consortia

      • Google’s AMP, the Canonical Web, and the Importance of Web Standards

        Have you ever clicked on a link after googling something, only to find that Google didn’t take you to the actual webpage but to some weird Google-fied version of it? Instead of the web address being the source of the article, it still says “google” in the address bar on your phone? That’s what’s known as Google Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP), and now Google has announced that AMP has graduated from the OpenJS Foundation Incubation Program. The OpenJS Foundation is a merged effort between major projects in the JavaScript ecosystem, such as NodeJS and jQuery, whose stated mission is “to support the healthy growth of the JavaScript and web ecosystem”. But instead of a standard starting with the web community, a giant company is coming to the community after they’ve already built a large part of the mobile web and are asking for a rubber stamp. Web community discussion should be the first step of making web standards, and not just a last-minute hurdle for Google to clear.

        This Google-backed, stripped down HTML framework was created with the promises of creating faster web pages for a better user experience. Cutting out slower loading content, like those developed with JavaScript. At a high level, AMP works by fast loading stripped down versions of full web pages for mobile viewing.

      • Open Standards Everywhere: How the Kolkata Chapter Got a Perfect Score

        In early May 2020, the Open Standards Everywhere (OSE) project held a series of virtual training sessions for Internet Society Chapters. Over 70 Chapter representatives from around the world learned, in English, French, or Spanish, how to improve the overall security and availability of their Chapter’s websites and web servers by enabling IPv6, HTTP/2, TLS, and DNSSEC.

  • Leftovers

    • What Are Art Galleries For?

      The gallery scene in New York, long the most active setting for new art worldwide, had been showing signs of malaise even before the Covid-19 pandemic. Many of its problems are shared around the globe—notably the rise of art fairs, which have increased the cost of doing business while drawing many collectors away from brick-and-mortar galleries; other challenges, such as high rents, are more specific to New York. All of them are rooted in a broader sociopolitical context: the seemingly inexorable rise of income inequality and the winner-take-all economy. One result has been consolidation of the art market around a small number of mega-galleries and a squeeze on the rest. And when the galleries are ailing, it’s the artists who are most affected.

    • Activists Are Beaming Free Wi-Fi to Protesters at NYC’s City Hall Occupation

      As protests against police violence continue, members of NYC Mesh built a network that provides [I]nternet access to the encampment without relying on Internet Service Providers.

    • Finnish Air Force Command drops swastika logo as insignia

      Brig. Gen. Jari Mikkonen at Air Force Command Finland acknowledged Thursday to The Associated Press that the historical swastika emblem had created confusion over the years among international colleagues.

      “Undeniably, we’ve had to explain from time to time the history of the (Finnish Air Force) swastika that dates back to 1918,” Mikkonen said. “It caused misunderstandings with our foreign partners, so continuing to use it was considered inappropriate and unnecessary.”

      The swastika is an ancient symbol and a religious icon in many cultures dating back thousands of years, but many still associate it with Nazi Germany’s notorious swastika flag adopted by Adolf Hitler and his Nazi Party in the early 1920s.

      The Finnish Air Command swastika emblem traces its roots back to March 1918 when the Finnish Air Force was created only a few months after Finland had declared its independence on Dec. 6, 1917.

    • Is the Five-Day Office Week Over?

      Most American office workers are in no hurry to return to the office full time, even after the coronavirus is under control. But that doesn’t mean they want to work from home forever. The future for them, a variety of new data shows, is likely to be workweeks split between office and home.

      Recent surveys show that both employees and employers support this arrangement. And research suggests that a couple of days a week at each location is the magic number to cancel out the negatives of each arrangement while reaping the benefits of both.

    • The Pandemic is Exposing More Americans to Remote Work, And Many are Latching On to the Practice

      A new Morning Consult survey report indicates the COVID-19 pandemic could disrupt the traditional office model, as many Americans who have shifted to working from home report positive experiences and are eager to see employers continue offering remote work options in the future.

      Overall, 73 percent of U.S. adults who have careers where remote work is possible report that the pandemic has made them feel more positively about the prospect of remote work. And given the option, three quarters of these workers say they would like to work from home at least 1-2 days a week once the pandemic is under control.

    • Education

    • Hardware

      • Desklab Portable USB-C Monitor

        I bought a mini-DisplayPort to HDMI adapter and for my first test ran it from my laptop, it was seen as a 1920*1080 DisplayPort monitor. The adaptor is specified as supporting 4K so I don’t know why I didn’t get 4K to work, my laptop has done 4K with other monitors.

        The next thing I plan to get is a VGA to HDMI converter so I can use this on servers, it can be a real pain getting a monitor and power cable to a rack mounted server and this portable monitor can be powered by one of the USB ports in the server. A quick search indicates that such devices start at about $12US.

        The Desklab monitor has no markings to indicate what resolution it supports, no part number, and no serial number. The only documentation I could find about how to recognise the difference between the FullHD and 4K versions is that the FullHD version supposedly draws 2A and the 4K version draws 4A. I connected my USB Ammeter and it reported that between 0.6 and 1.0A were drawn. If they meant to say 2W and 4W instead of 2A and 4A (I’ve seen worse errors in manuals) then the current drawn would indicate the 4K version. Otherwise the stated current requirements don’t come close to matching what I’ve measured.

    • Health/Nutrition

      • ‘A Scandal’: Contracts Show Trump Giving Big Pharma Free Rein to Price Gouge Taxpayer-Funded Coronavirus Drugs

        “The amount of money the government is throwing at companies is unprecedented. Normally when you write bigger checks, you should have more leverage, not less leverage.”

      • Trump’s Contagion Road Show Heads West

        It’s like a Stephen King horror novel where a nation is swept by a deadly and uncontrollable disease, sickening millions and killing over 100,000 citizens. Ignoring the advice of top infectious disease specialists who say, “Don’t go to large-scale gatherings,” a crazed president insists on holding rallies for the sole purpose of boosting his rapidly sinking chances of reelection. While recklessly ignoring precautions and exhorting his followers to do the same, he leaves not hope, but contagion and death in his path. Only it’s not a novel, it’s our reality — and now Trump’s traveling horror show heads west.

      • The People Must Rise Up and Remove Trump-Pence From This Horror Show Handling of the Pandemic

        The citizenry must quickly mount irresistible pressure for Trump and Pence to step aside.

      • Who Made the Plague?

        (A nursery rhyme for grownups)

      • As Pandemic Soars in US and Brazil, Red Cross Federation Chief Slams Trump and Bolsonaro for Anti-Science Responses

        The remarks from International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies president Francesco Rocca for lawmakers to heed science came as Trump said the coronavirus is “going to sort of just disappear.”

      • Trump Says Covid-19 Is ‘Going to Sort of Just Disappear, I Hope’ on Same Day New US Cases Topped 50,000 for First Time

        “These reckless statements are false—and coming from the president, they are dangerous.”

      • Trump Says COVID Is “Going to Sort of Just Disappear” as New US Cases Top 50k

        President Donald Trump said in an interview with Fox Business Wednesday that he hopes the coronavirus will “sort of just disappear” on its own, remarks that came on the same day new infections in the United States topped 50,000 for the first time since the start of the pandemic.

      • ‘We Are Not Even Beginning to Be Over This Pandemic’

        Just this week, something startling occurred. We heard the unvarnished truth about Covid-19 in the United States from a major public health official, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s principal deputy director Anne Schuchat. She is not a political appointee, has been at the agency since 1988, occupied many leadership roles since then, and has been at the forefront of the US response to pandemics like SARS and H1N1 influenza. The CDC’s career scientists have largely been silent since the early days of the current crisis, when Vice President Mike Pence and other senior administration officials took charge of the American effort against Covid-19, under tight control by the president and his son-in-law Jared Kushner.

      • We Take Homelessness for Granted. The Pandemic Should Change That.

        When San Francisco Mayor London Breed issued the nation’s first shelter-in-place order in mid-March, some San Francisco families were panic-shopping and wondering how on earth they would stay inside their homes for several weeks. Other families were grasping at straws to get inside at all.

      • As Arizona COVID Cases Surge From Reopening, Indigenous Nations Suffer

        In the days before Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey changed course by urging people to stay home, Scottsdale city councilman Guy Phillips donned a face covering and shouted “I can’t breathe” into a microphone at an anti-mask rally. His mocking of the last words of George Floyd is only one more example of the racism that seems to shadow the outbreaks of contagious viruses.

      • A Japanese Cityt Has Just Banned Using Phones While Walking

        Now, as passengers arrive at Yamato’s train station, a recorded voice broadcasts a warning about using smartphones while walking down sidewalks or in parks.

        “Using smartphones while walking is banned. Please operate your smartphones after you stop walking,” the recording says.

        But for now, that’s the extent of it: AFP reports that there’s no punishment linked to the crime of tweeting while walking, other than perhaps the ire of those around you.

      • E.U. coronavirus safe list: This is why the U.S. was nowhere near making the cut

        In fact, the Europeans say, the exclusive club was devised using strict epidemiological criteria.

        That’s why the U.S. — which has the most coronavirus cases and deaths in the world — was nowhere near making the cut, according to three E.U. diplomats involved in the negotiations, who spoke anonymously because they weren’t authorized to talk publicly about them.

      • Diaspora Organizations Are Stepping Into the Void on Covid-19

        As Covid-19 began to take its toll in New York City back in March, over in Hong Kong, artist Tiffany Sia watched the number of infections and deaths rise in horror. Having spent her childhood and adolescence in Manhattan before returning to her city of birth, she was deeply troubled by the lack of available basic protection, even as she watched her friends and family members living there contract Covid-19, and American officials tell people not to wear masks. Frustrated that Americans weren’t embracing what she saw as a simple way to confront an increasingly dire situation, she got in touch with a few friends, including Wilfred Chan, a contributing writer to The Nation, to set up a “DIY supply network”—in their words—to fundraise, purchase masks from a reliable distributor contact Sia had found, and get these masks in the hands of people working on the front lines at medical centers, at supermarkets, and inside Rikers.

      • Sanders Files Amendments to Force Pentagon to Pass Audit, Mass Produce Masks

        Sen. Bernie Sanders late Tuesday filed a slate of amendments to the National Defense Authorization Act aiming to force the Pentagon to pass an independent audit, require the federal government to mass-produce and deliver free masks to everyone in the U.S., and bar funding for the Saudi-led assault on Yemen.

      • Amid Pandemic, Oklahoma Residents Vote to Expand Medicaid Coverage

        A measure to expand Medicaid coverage in Oklahoma passed by a slim, 1 percent margin on Tuesday night, as the state grapples with growing concerns over coronavirus in recent weeks.

      • The GOP’s Grotesque Response to a Pandemic Will Never Be Forgotten

        With nearly 130,00 US deaths and 2.6 million infections—gosh, what to do now? Of course! Let’s take away the health care coverage of some 23 million Americans!

      • Blood on His Hands: The Nursing Home Covid-19 Crisis is Donald Trump’s Fault

        The president is desperate to deflect from the truth: Over 54,000 nursing home residents and workers are dead. Those deaths were preventable. Their deaths are his fault.

      • Big Pharma Trade Group Blasted as ‘Morally Bankrupt’ for Suing to Block Minnesota Insulin Affordability Law

        The law is named for Alec Smith, an uninsured 26-year-old who died in 2017 after rationing his insulin.

      • Texas Lt. Governor Says “No, Thank You” to Fauci’s Advice as COVID Cases Spike

        Appearing in an interview on Fox News with host Laura Ingraham on Tuesday evening, Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick lambasted Anthony Fauci, a member of the White House’s coronavirus task force and one of the nation’s top experts on infectious diseases.

      • As COVID Burns Through the South and West, Trump Fans the Flames

        Donald Trump has labored since March to imagine himself into a world where COVID-19 will go away in time to save his re-election campaign. Sure, people were getting sick and dying by the thousands in places like New York City, Boston, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago and Detroit, but those weren’t “his voters,” so Trump decided they weren’t his problem.

      • ‘Deplorable Act in Face of Global Crisis’: Trump Condemned as US Buys Up Nearly Entire Supply of Covid-19 Drug

        “It’s a very concerning precedent because if we see the vaccine coming from a U.S. company, we’re likely to see the same type of behavior and hoarding by the U.S. and other developed countries.”

      • Covid-19 and the Masque of the Red States

        Now that the pandemic is raging in the south and west, Trump’s governors finally are face-to-face with reality. Wear your damn mask.

      • Herman Cain is receiving treatment for coronavirus at an Atlanta hospital
      • Inside Congo’s Ebola emergency

        Beginning on 1 August 2018 and continuing for almost two years, eastern Democratic Republic of Congo grappled with the world’s first Ebola outbreak in an active conflict zone. It became the country’s deadliest outbreak to date and, with more than 2,200 lives lost, the second deadliest anywhere so far.

        On 25 June it was officially declared over, though responders are mindful that more than 1,000 survivors could relapse or infect others through body fluids, and that further outbreaks are likely in other parts of Congo, where Ebola remains endemic.

        The New Humanitarian was on the ground reporting throughout the just-ended epidemic. On this page, we’ve gathered all our key coverage so you can look back, explore what took place, and ponder the lessons learnt. We will continue to report on the aftermath of the epidemic and on new outbreaks, including cases detected in the northwest of the country in June.

      • Despite COVID-19 setbacks, displaced Kachin women keep their families afloat

        Uprooted for nearly a decade, women in displacement camps in Myanmar’s Kachin State are finding new ways to support their families as coronavirus restrictions squeeze livelihoods and aid.

        The New Humanitarian spoke with three women in Je Yang about life in long-term displacement, their hopes for peace, and how the coronavirus has forced communities in Myanmar’s northern borderlands to contend with new worries.

        June marked nine years since conflict resumed between the Kachin Independence Organisation (KIO) and Myanmar’s military, ending a 17-year ceasefire. Since 2011, the conflict has displaced more than 100,000 people, including some 38,000 living in KIO-controlled areas near the Chinese border.

        Je Yang, Kachin’s largest internal displacement camp, holds 8,700 people. They live in cramped shelters perched along mountainous terrain near the KIO base of Laiza.

        The women who spoke with TNH — Marip Bawk Nu, 49; Labang Nan Doi, 56; and Lashi Lu, 48 — are the main providers for their families. Female-headed homes are common in Je Yang and other displacement camps. Some men have lost their lives to war or to landmines, while others serve in the KIO or leave in search of work in China or in Kachin’s vast jade mines at Hpakant, a government-controlled area about 250 kilometres away.

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Two Musts for Managing a Remote Workforce: Identity Governance and Lifecycle

        Identity governance and lifecycle have always been fundamental to controlling user access and visibility into access activity in the workplace. But in a time when “the workplace” has been recast to mean every user’s home and a multitude of devices (including personal devices), these capabilities take on new meaning and importance. Identity governance suddenly isn’t just about who has access to what; it’s about where, how and why they have access. The meaning of identity lifecycle must be expanded, too, in light of the need to be concerned not just about securely enabling access to data, but about doing so when users aren’t inside a protected physical environment. Let’s look at some real-world examples of the identity management challenges remote work is creating, and at what it means to rethink identity governance and lifecycle to meet those challenges.

      • Proprietary

        • Ransomware Gangs Don’t Need PR Help

          Overall, I’ve tried to use each story to call attention to key failures that frequently give rise to ransomware infections, and to offer information about how other companies can avoid a similar fate.

          But simply parroting what professional extortionists have posted on their blog about victims of cybercrime smacks of providing aid and comfort to an enemy that needs and deserves neither.

        • Ransomware gangs are doing their homework before encrypting corporate data

          In the last three months, the criminal hackers behind the Maze ransomware have attacked two big IT service providers, one of which is a Fortune 500 company. Other ransomware gangs have hit big corporate targets, and in so doing are first locking computer systems and then publicly shaming companies that don’t pay up by dumping their data.

          For corporations that do pay the ransom, the pain sometimes isn’t over. There is no guarantee that the decryption key handed over by the attacker works, said Wendi Whitmore, global lead at IBM Security X-Force.

        • Zoom Will Offer End-To-End Encryption To All Its Users [Ed: But no. You cannot trust proprietary software to do what it claims to do.]

          The pandemic has moved more activities online–and specifically onto Zoom–than ever before. For an enterprise tool like Zoom, that means new users that the company never expected and did not design for, and all the unanticipated security and privacy problems that come with that sudden growth. Zoom’s decision to offer end-to-end encryption more widely is especially important because the people who cannot afford enterprise subscriptions are often the ones who need strong security and privacy protections the most. For example, many activists rely on Zoom as an organizing tool, including the Black-led movement against police violence.

          To use Zoom’s end-to-end encryption, free users will have to provide additional information, like a phone number, to authenticate. As Zoom notes, this is a common method for mitigating abuse, but phone numbers were never designed to be persistent all-purpose individual identifiers, and using them as such creates new risks for users. In different contexts, Signal, Facebook, and Twitter have all encountered disclosure and abuse problems with user phone numbers. At the very least, the phone numbers that users give Zoom should be used only for authentication, and only by Zoom. Zoom should not use these phone numbers for any other purpose, and should never require users to reveal them to other parties.

        • Pseudo-Open Source

          • Privatisation/Privateering

            • Linux Foundation

              • Linux Foundation To Boost Open Software Standards With Community Specification
              • New Community Specification Process Facilitates Open Standards

                The Linux Foundation has announced Community Specification, which aims to facilitate and accelerate the creation of open standards.

                “Open Standards are best defined as specifications made available to the public, developed, and maintained via an inclusive, collaborative, transparent, and consensus-driven process. Open standards facilitate interoperability and data exchange among different products or services and are intended for widespread adoption,” according to a recent post on the Linux Foundation website.

              • Driving Compatibility with Code and Specifications through Conformance Trademark Programs

                A key goal of some open collaboration efforts — whether source code or specification oriented — is to prevent technical ‘drift’ away from a core set of functions or interfaces. Projects seek a means to communicate — and know — that if a downstream product or open source project is held out as compatible with the project’s deliverable, that product or component is, in fact, compatible. Such compatibility strengthens the ecosystem by providing end-users with confidence that data and solutions from one environment can work in another conformant environment with minimal friction. It also provides product and solution providers a stable set of known interfaces they can depend on for their commercially supported offerings.

                A trademark conformance program, which is one supporting program that the LF offers its projects, can be used to encourage conformance with the project’s code base or interfaces. Anyone can use the open source project code however they want — subject to the applicable open source license — but if a downstream solution wants to describe itself as conformant using the project’s conformance trademark, it must meet the project’s definition of “conformant.” Some communities choose to use words other than “conformant” including “certified”, “ready”, or “powered by” in association with commercial uses of the open source codebase. This is the approach that some Linux Foundation projects take to maintain compatibility and reduce fragmentation of code and interfaces.

                Through this approach, we enable our projects to create flexible, custom-tailored conformance programs to meet the needs of their respective communities. In fact, our conformance programs can operate as open source projects themselves (see, for example, https://cncf.io/ck ). They incorporate a balance of interests from vendors, end-users, and contributors to the project and enable the community to define how the commercial ecosystem participants can leverage the use of the community’s mark.

        • Security

          • WordPress file permissions: the guide to configuring secure website & web server permissions
          • Updating the Git protocol for SHA-256

            The primary force behind the move from SHA-1 to SHA-256 is contributor brian m. carlson, who has been working over the years to make the transition happen. It has not been an easy task; the original Git implementation hard-coded SHA-1 as the only supported algorithm, and countless repositories need to be transitioned from SHA-1 to SHA-256. Moreover, in the time this transition is taking place, Git needs to maintain interoperability between the two hash algorithms within the context of a single repository, since users may still be using older Git clients.

            The problems surrounding that transition are complicated. Different versions of Git clients and servers may or may not have SHA-256 support, and all repositories need to be able to work under both algorithms for some time to come. This means Git will need to keep track of objects in two different ways and seamlessly work correctly, regardless of the hashing algorithm. For example, hash values are often abbreviated by users when referencing commits: 412e40d041 instead of 412e40d041e861506bb3ac11a3a91e3, so even the fact that SHA-256 and SHA-1 hash values are different lengths is only marginally helpful.

          • Security updates for Thursday

            Security updates have been issued by Debian (chromium and firefox-esr), Fedora (chromium and ntp), SUSE (ntp and unbound), and Ubuntu (libvncserver).

          • Canonical Outs Important Linux Kernel Security Updates for All Supported Ubuntu Releases

            The most important security issue fixed in this new Linux kernel update was discovered in the SELinux network label handling implementation by Matthew Sheets. This vulnerability (CVE-2020-10711) affects Ubuntu 20.04 LTS, 19.10, 18.04 LTS, and 16.04 LTS, and could allow a remote attacker to cause a denial of service (system crash).

            On Ubuntu 19.10 and Ubuntu 18.04 LTS systems using either Linux 5.3 or 5.0 kernels, the new security update addresses another important vulnerability (CVE-2020-10751) discovered by Dmitry Vyukov in the SELinux netlink security hook, which could allow a privileged attacker to bypass SELinux netlink restrictions.

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • Hundreds of Police Departments with Deadly Histories Partner with Amazon’s Ring Surveillance Cameras

              Research by the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) shows that hundreds of U.S. police departments with deadly histories have official partnerships with Amazon’s Ring—a home-surveillance company that makes it easy to send video footage to law enforcement.

              Ring sells networked cameras, often bundled with doorbells or lighting, that record video when they register movement and then send notifications to owners’ cell phones. Ring’s partnerships allow police to seek access to private video footage directly from residents through a special web portal. Ring now works with over 1400 agencies, adding 600 in the last six months alone. An analysis of data from Ring, Fatal Encounters, and Mapping Police Violence shows that roughly half of the agencies that Ring has partnered with had fatal encounters in the last five years. In fact, those departments have been responsible for over a third of fatal police encounters nationwide, including the deaths of Breonna Taylor, Alton Sterling, Botham Jean, Antonio Valenzuela, Michael Ramos, and Sean Monterrosa.

            • Amazon’s Ring Enables the Over-Policing Efforts of Some of America’s Deadliest Law Enforcement Agencies

              Ring, Amazon’s “smart” doorbell camera company, recently began sharing statistics on how many video requests police departments submit to users, and the numbers are staggering. In the first quarter of 2020 alone, police requested videos over 5000 times, using their partnerships with the company to email users directly and ask them to share private videos from their Ring devices.

              It’s unclear how many video requests were successful, as users have the option to deny the requests; however, even a small percentage of successful requests would mean potentially thousands of videos shared with police per year. With a warrant, police could also circumvent the device’s owner and get footage straight from Amazon, even if the owner denied the police. 

            • Onion Service version 2 deprecation timeline
            • HongKongers prepare for China and new national security law by scrubbing digital footprint

              As China takes over Hong Kong with a new national security law, Hongkongers prepare by cleaning up their social media presence. Before, under the now demolished “one country, two systems” lie, people posted online with an expectation that freedom of expression would be respected. That may no longer be on the table now that China is exerting its control over Hong Kong.

            • After exaggerated claims about their importance, here’s the reality of contact tracing apps

              Back in February, this blog was one of the first to warn that the obvious technological response to the coronavirus – the use of contact tracing apps – raised important privacy questions. Since then, both the apps and their implications have been the subject of debate around the world. That’s particularly the case for the UK’s approach, which was even more contested than others. There were two key areas that were problematic. One was the decision not to use the Apple-Google contact-tracing framework. The UK government was unwilling to agree to the strong data protection safeguards built in to that, since it wished to adopt a centralized approach – the other problem – something ruled out by Apple and Google. Things went badly, and the UK has bowed to the inevitable, and abandoned its own code in favor of the Apple-Google framework.

            • [Old] TikTok offered details about how its most popular feed works. Experts seem unimpressed.

              Earlier this year, the Intercept obtained internal policy documents that encouraged content moderators to limit videos appearing in the “For You” feed that were deemed “undesirable,” including those featuring people with an “abnormal body shape” and “ugly facial looks.” TikTok also reportedly reached out to some high-profile users of its app to update them about changing rules, and the company censored political speech on its livestreaming feature.

            • Palmer Luckey’s surveillance startup Anduril signs contract for ‘virtual border wall’

              US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has signed a deal with Anduril, the “virtual border wall” startup launched by Oculus founder Palmer Luckey. The Washington Post reports that the agency awarded Anduril a five-year contract to deploy portable surveillance towers meant to detect moving vehicles and human figures across the US border. The deal will see CBP purchase 140 towers in 2021 and 2022, supplementing 60 towers that were already part of a pilot program. A company executive told the Post that the deal was worth “several hundred million dollars.”

    • Defence/Aggression

      • Did the Army Ignore a Soldier’s Murder? Questions Mount over Vanessa Guillén Disappearance

        The U.S. Army says it has a suspect in custody in connection with the disappearance of Vanessa Guillén, a missing 20-year-old Fort Hood soldier whose family says her remains were likely found in a shallow grave near the Texas Army base. A second suspect in the case — a soldier who the Guillén family lawyer named as Aaron Robinson — killed himself in Killeen, Texas, as officers approached. The news comes after months of anguish for Vanessa Guillén’s family, who say she was sexually harassed by a higher-up prior to her disappearance and that the military was slow to investigate when she went missing. We get an update from the family’s attorney, Natalie Khawam.

      • New ICC Complaint Filed Over US-Israel War Crimes in Palestine

        Prominent international critics have called the ongoing Zionist colonization of Palestine an act of ethnic cleansing and the exclusively Jewish settlements a form of apartheid.

      • U.S. Marine Corps Concludes Its Investigation Into a Fatal 2018 Midair Crash Was Inaccurate

        The U.S. Marine Corps acknowledged in a new high-level review that its original investigation into a fatal 2018 midair crash off the coast of Japan was inaccurate and incomplete, led by a commander who was more concerned with how his findings would be perceived by his bosses than getting to the truth.

        The new review reexamined the December 2018 crash between an American fighter jet and a refueling tanker during a nighttime training exercise. The Marine Corps’ original investigation into the crash, which killed six Marines, largely blamed the squadron itself, painting the men as reckless aviators who flouted safety protocols and abused prescription drugs.

      • Military deployed in Ethiopian capital after more than 80 killed in protests

        The protests were sparked by the assassination of popular musician Haacaaluu Hundeessaa on Monday night and spread from Addis Ababa to the surrounding Oromiya region.

        The killing tapped into grievances fuelled by decades of government repression and what the Oromo, Ethiopia’s biggest ethnic group, describe as their historic exclusion from political power.

      • A New Anti-War Mobilization Must Topple Trump—and Challenge Biden

        Building a new anti-war movement that is connected to the domestic anti-police struggle is the only thing that can rein in US militarism.

      • ‘Day of Rage’: Palestinians and Global Allies Rise Up Against Annexation Plan and Israeli Apartheid

        “The Palestinian struggle today is not just about fighting annexation, which we must continue to do. It is about dismantling the entire system of apartheid.”

    • Environment

      • Less rain will fall during Mediterranean winters

        Mediterranean winters could bring 40% less rain, hurting farmers in what’s called the cradle of agriculture – and not only farmers.

      • A potentially deadly weather pattern is setting up across the central US

        The seriousness of excessive heat cannot be overstated. Although hurricanes and tornadoes gain the most notoriety in the world of weather, many are surprised to learn that it is heat that is the top weather killer.

        In fact, heat kills nearly twice as many Americans each year than tornadoes and almost three times more Americans than hurricanes.

      • How climate change is affecting your cup of coffee

        “It was thought that it could handle average temperatures up to even 30 degrees Celsius, but when we looked into its relationship with those climate variables, we found it performed best at much cooler conditions, so around 20.5 degrees.”

        The issue is not whether the plants can survive at the higher temperatures, Dr Kath said, but whether they could produce a viable crop.

        This is especially important, he said, because it had widely been thought that coffee plantations could transition from arabica to robusta crops as the global temperature increased.

      • Fires rage across Amazon rainforest, sparking fears of another disastrous summer season

        In the month of June alone, almost 2,250 separate fires were recorded in the Amazon rainforest – up from around 1,900 fires detected in the same period last year. NGOs are worried that this summer will see a repeat of the infernos that raged across the Amazon last summer.

      • In Russia, a New Generation of Activists are Taking on Climate Crisis

        Against a hostile media—and a powerful fossil lobby, young people in Russia are coming out to build a safe climate future.

      • Silver Linings on a River

        Stillwater, Me.—Biking through my neighborhood, I notice a new Trump/Pence sign on the lawn strewn with Americana ornaments. A far cry from the rainbow animal sculptures down the road celebrating LGBT pride. Our small community on the Stillwater River is sandwiched between the progressive college town of Orono, headquarters to the University of Maine, and the working-class paper mill community of Old Town, near the home of the Penobscot Nation and the world-famous canoe. These disparate places are connected by the river, which I am fortunate to have winding along my backyard. It was this river that offered sanctuary to my parents after a war divided our country, Cyprus, in 1974. This river was my companion as a child who spent most of her time outdoors. This river urged me to move with my family back to Maine from New York when, after eight years, the apple started to sour. This river, a small artery in the web of life, offers me relief today as humanity cries, I can’t breathe.

      • Energy

        • IEA Report Misses the Mark on ‘Sustainable Recovery’ by Sidelining 1.5°C

          The decisions made over the next three years will set our course to 2030. To be a useful authority on a sustainable recovery, the IEA needs to choose a side.

        • Oil Industry and Allies Look to Pump Brakes on Democrats’ Plans to Move Transportation Off Petroleum

          The infrastructure bill comes on the heels of a new climate action plan released June 30 by the House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis. That plan offers a roadmap for mostly eliminating globe-warming greenhouse gas emissions from the U.S. by 2050. Achieving zero emissions from the nation’s transportation sector is a key priority in this plan.

        • Warning: The world won’t hit climate goals unless energy innovation is rapidly accelerated

          The International Energy Agency sounded the alarm Thursday about the “critical need” to rapidly accelerate clean energy innovation. That’s because the climate goals set by governments and corporations around the world depend on technologies that have not yet reached the market.

          “The message is very clear: in the absence of much faster clean energy innovation, achieving net-zero goals in 2050 will be all but impossible,” Fatih Birol, the IEA’s executive director, said in a statement.

        • New Analysis Says Coal’s Hit a ‘Tipping Point’ And No Longer Makes Financial Sense

          Renewable energy such as wind and solar projects are already cheaper to build than it is to continue operating 40 percent of the world’s existing coal fleet, according to analysis released Tuesday.

          In a report outlining how the world can phase out the most polluting fuel while powering an economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic, a group of experts said coal had reached a financial “tipping point” making it uncompetitive in most markets.

      • Wildlife/Nature

    • Finance

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • Project Censored’s 2020 Summer Reading List – Censored Notebook

        The End of White Politics: How to Heal Our Political Divide, Zerlina Maxwell

      • China’s new national security law is already chilling free speech in Hong Kong

        At 11pm local time on Tuesday, Hong Kong’s government unveiled the text of a draconian new national security law that gives the Chinese government vast new powers to crackdown on free speech and dissent in Hong Kong.

        Drafted in secrecy by top Chinese officials in Beijing — and not seen by the public until that very moment — the law criminalizes “secession, subversion, organization and perpetration of terrorist activities, and collusion with a foreign country or with external elements to endanger national security.”

        Those who commit such acts — which experts say are vaguely defined in the law, and thus allow for an extremely broad interpretation by authorities — face severe punishment, up to and including life in prison.

      • Reddit bans 2,000 communities in major censorship action

        Meanwhile, hiding behind the banning of the widely despised subreddit r/The_Donald, Reddit executives also took action to shut down some 2,000 other groups, including a popular left-radical forum called r/ChapoTrapHouse, named after a popular podcast, which had approximately 160,000 users in its community.

      • America Exports Cancel Culture to the World

        ecently, I was interviewed for a video for the Dutch media outlet NU.nl, a popular news website in the Netherlands. The topic was cancel culture, which refers to the social trend of ending (or attempting to end) an individual’s career or prominence to hold them to account for violating moral norms. The video was about the uses and abuses of this new trend, including how cancel culture has rightly jettisoned reprehensible individuals like Harvey Weinstein from polite society. On the other hand, it also discussed its excesses, such as the recent social media mobbing of J.K. Rowling. During my segment, I described how individuals use cancel culture to elevate their own social position.

        Three days after it was published, the video was taken down. I contacted the journalist who interviewed me, asking what happened. He replied that although the video gathered over 176,000 views and was positively received by viewers, his employer determined that it “didn’t meet their profile.” He then revealed that his supervisors believed the video was too sympathetic to the targets of cancel culture. In other words, a video about cancel culture was cancelled.

        This social phenomenon is spreading beyond our shores. [...]

      • Radio Is Quietly Scrubbing the Word ‘Urban,’ Sources Say

        A rep for iHeartMedia — the U.S.’s largest radio conglomerate, operating 855 stations — says that the company is in the process of removing “urban” from job titles, adding that it has “already transitioned away from it” and into “more descriptive and specific names such as hip-hop and R&B” to break from the past. iHeart will also no longer use “urban” when referencing the format or in internal communication. The term is “definitely outdated,” the rep says.

        In addition, multiple major label executives and other industry sources familiar with the matter tell Rolling Stone that the iHeart-owned data analytics company Mediabase, which powers the industry’s go-to charts on radio airplay, is planning to remove “urban” from its chart names. Mediabase currently publishes two charts reflecting the top-played tunes at U.S. Urban stations and Urban Adult Contemporary (AC) stations; these charts will be renamed Hip-hop/R&B and R&B, respectively, sources say. Mediabase did not respond to request for comment on Thursday.

      • India bans 59 apps it says have privacy, national security problems. In a massive coincidence, they’re all Chinese

        India has banned the use of 59 smartphone apps it says violate its citizens’ privacy and threaten national security. In a massive coincidence they come from China, and just weeks after border skirmishes between the two nations.

        The Indian government’s announcement of the software banishment said the offending apps “are engaged in activities which is prejudicial to sovereignty and integrity of India, defence of India, security of state and public order.“

        “The Ministry of Information Technology has received many complaints from various sources including several reports about misuse of some mobile apps available on Android and iOS platforms for stealing and surreptitiously transmitting users’ data in an unauthorized manner to servers which have locations outside India,” the statement continued.

        “The compilation of these data, its mining and profiling by elements hostile to national security and defence of India, which ultimately impinges upon the sovereignty and integrity of India, is a matter of very deep and immediate concern which requires emergency measures.“

    • Freedom of Information/Freedom of the Press

      • Wikileaks-Hosted “Most Wanted Leaks” Reflects the Transparency Priorities of Public Contributors

        The government recently released a superseding indictment[1] against Wikileaks editor in chief Julian Assange, currently imprisoned and awaiting extradition in the United Kingdom. As we’ve written before, this prosecution poses a clear threat to journalism, and, whether or not Assange considers himself a journalist, the indictment targets routine journalistic practices such as working with and encouraging sources during an investigation.

        While considering the superseding indictment, it’s useful to look at some of the features carrying over from the previous version. Through much of the indictment, the government describes and refers back to a page on the Wikileaks website describing the “Most Wanted Leaks of 2009.[2]” The implication in the indictment is that Wikileaks was actively soliciting leaks with this Most Wanted Leaks list, but the government is leaving out a crucial piece of nuance about the Most Wanted Leaks page: Unlike much of Wikileaks.org, the Most Wanted Leaks was actually a publicly-editable wiki. 

      • RSF Reiterates Call For Charges Against Julian Assange To Be Dropped As US Issues New Indictment

        Reporters Without Borders (RSF) condemns the US Department of Justice’s issuing of a new superseding indictment against Wikileaks founder Julian Assange – the latest in a long series of US government attempts to manipulate legal loopholes and undermine Assange’s defense. RSF calls again for all charges against Assange to be dropped and for him to be immediately released.

        On 24 June, the US Department of Justice filed a new superseding indictment against Assange, broadening the “scope of the conspiracy” claimed in the hacking allegations against him. Assange had previously been indicted on 17 counts under the Espionage Act and one charge under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA); the new superseding indictment did not add new charges, but expands the scope of the CFAA charge and changes the evidential basis of some of the other charges against him.

      • Belarus Media Arrests Are Sign of Election Crackdown, Experts Say

        As President Alexander Lukashenko prepares for what experts say could be his stiffest election challenge yet, Belarusian authorities have detained at least 20 journalists and bloggers.

        In the months leading up to the August 9 election, authorities have arrested opposition presidential candidate Viktor Babaryko on suspicion of financial crimes, and over 100 protesters who were calling for an end to Lukashenko’s 26-year rule.

        At least 14 journalists covering the protests were among those detained. On June 23, three were convicted of participating in illegal protests – charges the journalists denied. Separately, about six bloggers were arrested over their blog posts or commentary.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • Tear Gas and Clubs in Lafayette Square Were Just the Beginning

        On June 1, President Trump ordered National Park Police and troops from the District of Columbia National Guard and some other federal law enforcement agencies to drive peaceful protesters from Lafayette Square, north of the White House, to clear the way for his Bible-holding photo op. The same day, Trump and his Attorney General William Barr, along with Defense Secretary Mark Esper, also placed a call to the nation’s 50 governors.

      • How Did Police Unions Get So Powerful?

        New York City’s liberal mayor, elected on a platform of overhauling a police department accused of deep-seated racism and corruption, had a seemingly obvious idea for reform: instituting civilian oversight of the police.

      • Housing Activists Unite to Fight Mass Evictions and Defund Police

        As COVID-19’s second wave bears down, nearly half of all states’ eviction moratoria have already expired or are set to expire in the next two months. A federal moratorium that bans evictions of people in rentals backed by the government expires July 25. To make matters worse, the CARES Act’s supplemental boost to unemployment insurance ends July 31.

      • Police Unions Are Racist Power Brokers in Opposition to Movement for Black Lives

        The scene is all too frequent — a Black person is slain or wantonly brutalized on camera by police officers, most often white, and in response, a white police union leader steps to the microphone and unequivocally defends the actions, no matter how indefensible they are. A police chief or mayor, under pressure from the community, attempts to invoke modest reforms in response, and the union wields the power of its contract to defeat the measures. Progressive-leaning prosecutors are mercilessly attacked and judges plied with union contributions to support “law and order.” Killer cops are supplied with lawyers, at union expense, when they are administratively charged or criminally prosecuted. When a department, pursuant to a consent decree or community pressure, implements de-escalation and peer intervention training, the union provides alternative “warrior mentality” training free of charge. The union leaps to the defense of a cop who sends a defenseless 75-year-old peace activist to the hospital in critical condition. Several police union leaders are notorious “repeater beaters” with long records of shootings, beatings and other misconduct. Cops in their union garb pack courtrooms to intimidate cops who break the code of silence and bravely testify about police torture and murder. Union leaders rally for Trump, while he encourages their violence. And the list goes on.

      • Markey Bill Backed by Sanders and Warren Seeks to Abolish Qualified Immunity

        In the wake of the recent killings of George Floyd in Minnesota and Breonna Taylor in Kentucky — which sparked a national uprising against racial injustice and police violence — Sens. Ed Markey (D-Mass.), Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), and Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) on Wednesday introduced a new bill in the U.S. Senate that would end “qualified immunity” for law enforcement officers accused of excessive force and violating the constitutional rights of civilians.

      • The White Left Needs to Embrace Black Leadership

        We are seeing one of the largest uprisings in US history, and Black leftist organizers and Black working-class people are leading it. The video of George Floyd begging for his life and calling for his mother as Derek Chauvin, a white police officer, kneeled on his neck for eight minutes and 46 seconds made Floyd this generation’s Emmett Till. When white Americans watched that scene of unchecked racism, state power, and the toxic masculinity that permeates police culture, they had a choice: to allow that cop to speak for them or to hit the streets as part of a movement against white supremacy and police repression. Millions across the world opted for the latter.

      • With Epstein Suicide Looming, Ocasio-Cortez Calls for Assurances of Ghislaine Maxwell’s Safety While in Custody

        “I hope the SDNY and all relevant parties have conducted an extensive review of the failures of Epstein’s custody,” said the New York Democrat.

      • 300+ Law Professors Agree: Congress Should ‘Pass a Bill Tomorrow’ to End Qualified Immunity for Police

        The Supreme Court has “drained the life” from a law meant to ensure people can seek redress when their constitutional rights are violated by the police, the professors said.

      • Black Visibility Matters—and Not Just During Trauma

        “We would love for you to share your experience on this very important topic.”

      • Tactics And The Truth: The Geoffrey Rush Defamation Appeal Unpacked

        Actress Eryn Jean Norvill – one of the central figures in the allegations of sexual harassment levelled against Geoffrey Rush – was described by a judge as “A witness prone to exaggeration and embellishment”. Hannah Marshall from Marque Lawyers unpacks the findings in the Geoffrey Rush defamation appeal, and some gaping flaws in our judicial system.

      • The New EARN IT Bill Still Threatens Encryption and Free Speech

        The day before a committee debate and vote on the EARN IT Act, the bill’s sponsors replaced their bill with an amended version. Here’s their new idea: instead of giving a 19-person federal commission, dominated by law enforcement, the power to regulate the Internet, the bill now effectively gives that power to state legislatures. 

        And instead of requiring that Internet websites and platforms comply with the commission’s “best practices” in order to keep their vital legal protections under Section 230 for hosting user content, it simply blows a hole in those protections. State lawmakers will be able to create new laws allowing private lawsuits and criminal prosecutions against Internet platforms, as long as they say their purpose is to stop crimes against children. 

      • He Built a Privately Funded Border Wall. It’s Already at Risk of Falling Down if Not Fixed.

        Tommy Fisher billed his new privately funded border wall as the future of deterrence, a quick-to-build steel fortress that spans 3 miles in one of the busiest Border Patrol sectors.

        Unlike a generation of wall builders before him, he said he figured out how to build a structure directly on the banks of the Rio Grande, a risky but potentially game-changing step when it came to the nation’s border wall system.

      • Biden Compared Indicted War Criminal to “George Washington”

        In 2010, current Democratic Party presidential hopeful Joe Biden Jr. referred to Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) leader Hashim Thaci as the “George Washington of Kosovo.”

      • Traditional Russophobia in an Unusual Election Year

        Why would Russia pay Taliban troops to kill U.S. troops in Afghanistan? “Russia has never gotten over the humiliation they suffered in Afghanistan,” Nancy Pelosi explains helpfully, “and now they are taking it out on us, our troops.”

      • America is Falling Because You Can’t Maintain a Democratic Republic With a Stupid Population

        Ok, fair enough.

        Good to know for next time.

      • Barbara Ransby on the Biden Problem: Social Movements Must Defeat Trump & Also Hold Dems Accountable

        Amid a mass uprising against racism and state violence, social movements are not just fighting hostility and backlash from President Trump, but also dealing with a “Biden problem,” according to historian, author and activist Barbara Ransby. “I think it’s fair to say that Joe Biden is not our dream candidate, by any means,” she says. “We should be critical of Joe Biden. We should be ready to hold Joe Biden accountable come January. But we should be clear about the need to defeat Trump in November.”

      • The Untold History of Mount Rushmore
      • The Untold History of Mount Rushmore: A KKK Sympathizer Built Monument on Sacred Lakota Land

        As tribal governments call on President Trump to cancel his Mount Rushmore Independence Day celebration, we look at why Native Americans have long pushed for the removal of the monument carved into the sacred Black Hills and designed by a sculptor with ties to the Ku Klux Klan. “This place is very, very sacred to our people,” says Nick Tilsen, president and CEO of the NDN Collective. “Stealing our land and then carving the faces of four white men who were colonizers, who committed genocide against Indigenous people, is an egregious act of violence.”

      • COVID-19 Outbreak Feared At Massachusetts Prison After Incarcerated Man Collapses In Kitchen

        Advocates and incarcerated people fear a potential COVID-19 outbreak at MCI Norfolk in Massachusetts after an incarcerated man collapsed during his kitchen duty shift.

        The man was taken to the hospital and tested positive for COVID-19. Officials placed his housing unit on lockdown, but only after he potentially exposed kitchen staff and incarcerated people in his housing unit to the virus.

      • Russian LGBTQ activist charged with distributing pornography faces new allegations of ‘gay propaganda’

        Law enforcement have filed a new administrative protocol against artist and LGBTQ rights activist Yulia Tsvetkova for “promoting non-traditional sexual relationships among minors” — a violation of Russia’s so-called “gay propaganda law.” Tsvetkova, who is from the Far Eastern city of Komsomolsk-on-Amur, is already facing up to six years in prison for the criminal distribution of pornography, over drawings she posted on social media.

      • Detroit Police Chief Says Facial Recognition Software Involved In Bogus Arrest Is Wrong ’96 Percent Of The Time’

        The law enforcement agency involved with the first reported false arrest linked to facial recognition software is talking about its software. The Detroit Police Department — acting on a facial recognition “match” handed to it by State Police investigators — arrested resident Robert Williams for allegedly shoplifting watches from an upscale boutique.

      • Fears grow of a surge in child marriages in Malawi

        Before coronavirus pandemic struck, Malawi already had one of the highest rates of child marriages in the world. But ever since schools closed to help combat the spread of COVID-19, remote areas have reported an increase in child marriages.

      • The Erasing Of Iranian Women, Their History, And Their Aspirations

        As an American teen who played soccer, had a boyfriend, spoke her mind, laid by the pool and laughed loud, I found my homeland at once beautifully familiar and grossly threatening. The morality police I had been warned about were indeed everywhere, all the time. From Tehran to Shiraz, Esfahan, and the Caspian Sea, they found ways to humiliate, violate, interrogate, threaten, and prohibit, not least because we stubbornly (or naively) traveled the country without a male escort, by itself an illegal act.

        The conventional wisdom about Iran is that things have much improved since those dark days of the 1980s. But the truth is that the Iranian people have only grown accustomed to tyranny, and their suffering has only calcified. This is the nature of totalitarian regimes; time works to deepen their rot, never to reform them. All the while their societies disintegrate and their people flee, the corrupt rulers do advance, but only in their nefarious actions, military arsenals and chest puffing. Those on the inside see through the bluster, lies and deception, as their lives worsen.

      • Facebook Accused by Black Manager of Systemic Discrimination

        Thursday’s complaint to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission by a Washington-based operations program manager adds pressure on the social network, which is facing an advertising boycott over its failure to remove violent, divisive, racist and discriminatory posts. Along with other major tech companies, Facebook also has been criticized for its lack of diversity.

        Oscar Veneszee Jr., a decorated 23-year U.S. Navy veteran hired by the company in 2017 to recruit other workers retired from the armed services, said he filed the complaint after his objections to Facebook managers over treatment of African Americans went nowhere. It was filed as a class action to represent other Black people who’ve experienced discrimination inside the company, as well as those who claim they were unfairly denied jobs with the social network.

      • Facebook to launch Fourth of July voter registration drive

        Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg discussed the platform’s voter registration efforts in a post last week, writing that information on the voting center will be visible at the top of Facebook and Instagram feeds over the next few months.

      • [Old] How Cambridge Analytica Mined Data for Voter Influence

        We are now in the age of data science. The ability to scrape data from across multiple social media platforms, capturing user behavior patterns and comments are unprecedented. It has spawned a huge demand for top-notch data scientists, who are figuring out how to harvest and analyze vast quantities of data, creating algorithms that cull and respond, and building predictive models. Their toolbox is an impressive mix of machine learning, statistics, robust programming skills and both artificial and natural intelligence—and they are all trying to capture and influence human behavior in evermore nuanced and targeted ways.

      • Prisoners Mobilize for Black Lives and Against Brutality Behind Bars

        Over Memorial Day weekend, a mob of ten or more prison guards maced and beat “Pooh Bear,” a Black man incarcerated in Alabama’s Kilby Correctional Facility, in the head arms, ribs, legs and back with clubs.

      • Charles Webb Enters Heaven

        Charles Webb, author of The Graduate (an identity that dogged and bedeviled him his whole life). died a few days ago at age 81. I met Charles in early 1970, shortly after the release of his second novel, The Marriage of a Young Stockbroker. I was waiting for my own novel to come out that summer and decided as a way to stop obsessing about it I would help promote the work of some other writers whose work I admired. Like nearly everyone of my generation, I had been hypnotized by the movie of The Graduate, and when I read the novel I realized all the producers of the movie had to do for a script was transcribe the dialogue of the novel (not an ordinary formula.)

      • After Weeks of Allowing ‘Autonomous Zone,’ Seattle Police Clear CHOP Amid Violence, Growing Complaints

        As the city’s police chief said, “Enough is enough,” one organizer lamented that “it didn’t end how it started and that’s the tragedy of the situation.”

      • Progressive Populism and a 21st Century Challenge

        Grassroots activists are re-defining populism for a new era.

      • Crisis After Crisis on the Border

        Ciudad Juarez has a long history of crises–foreign invasions, revolutions, economic recessions tied to the United States, the 9-11 border constriction and transnational gangland wars. Then there’s the perpetual crisis of putting food on the table in a high-priced, low-wage city while staying safe in a place where violence can surge at any moment.

      • Jamaal Bowman Calls for Rent Cancellations and Defunding the NYPD

        As a surge of progressive candidates of color see victories in Democratic primaries across the country, we speak with former Bronx middle school principal Jamaal Bowman about his upset victory over New York Congressmember Eliot Engel, the 16-term Foreign Affairs Committee chair. Bowman ran on a Green New Deal, Medicare for All platform and recently joined protests demanding an end to racism and police brutality. He says his upset over Engel came down to mobilizing people who are “disenfranchised and ignored” by the political establishment. “We didn’t just target those who consistently vote in primaries. We targeted everyone,” he says. Looking forward, he describes his support for Palestine, a rent strike and police accountability.

      • SCOTUS Ruling on Religious Schools Threatens Church-State Separation

        The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday delivered a ruling civil liberties advocates warned could make taxpayers “underwrite religious education” — opening a massive crack in the bedrock principle of church and state separation.

      • A Call for Radical Humanism: the Left Needs to Return to Class Analyses of Power

        How do white people live with themselves? This is the presumed ethical position emanating from liberal corners in the aftermath of the recent protests around the US. While a seemingly thought-provoking question nudging white folks to contemplate “their racism,” the problem with this question is the question itself. Indeed the minute we individualize what are structural problems of police violence and focus upon rooting out “wrong thought” as if a new global war on terror, we necessarily default to witch hunts of individuals through McCarthyesque callouts instead of understanding racism as a byproduct of structural inequalities.

      • As Monuments to War Generals Come Down, Let’s Replace Them with Monuments to Peace

        The monuments to Confederate generals and to those who fought to maintain slavery are coming down. That’s a good thing and long overdue. It cannot stop there, however, as we move not only to eradicate their symbolism, but the very real systemic racism they represent, and which sadly persists in this country.

      • Congress Urged to Repeal Program That Transfers ‘Weapons of War’ to Local Police

        “In response to the national outrage, armored vehicles, assault weapons, and military gear once again filled our streets and communities, turning them into war zones.”

      • In New York, Zionism and Liberalism Faced Off—and Liberalism Won

        It is usually a mistake to try to draw historical lessons from events just days old. It’s an even dicier proposition when it involves just the 50,000 voters who participated in last Tuesday’s Democratic primary in New York’s 16th district. But I’ve been working for years on a book about the history of the Israel/Palestine debate in the United States and I’m going to risk it, because I think American politics—specifically American Jewish politics—is undergoing a significant shift with important implications.

      • Black Lives Matter: Walking Forward
      • Cheyenne River Sioux Chair Offers to Rip Down Mount Rushmore—”Free of Charge… By Myself If I Must”

        “Nothing stands as a greater reminder to the Great Sioux Nation of a country that cannot keep a promise or treaty than the faces carved into our sacred land on what the United States calls Mount Rushmore.”

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

      • Closing the Digital Divide in Nepal

        While connecting some of Nepal’s most remote places isn’t easy, two community network projects are case studies of how it can be done. They are Wireless for Communities (W4C) Nepal and Rural Communities Access to Information Society (RUCCESS), both supported by the Internet Society.

        Community networks are networks built, managed and used by local communities. They are often established in rural and remote areas that are not commercially viable for Internet service providers (ISPs). The networks are often built using low-cost WiFi equipment and unlicensed spectrum bands to interconnect members of the community and improve their lives.

    • Monopolies

      • Four Top Tech C.E.O.s Will Testify on Antitrust, Panel Says

        Jeff Bezos of Amazon, Tim Cook of Apple, Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook and Sundar Pichai of Alphabet, which owns Google and YouTube, will appear at the hearing, said Shadawn Reddick-Smith, a spokeswoman for the House Judiciary Committee, which is said to be nearing the end of its investigation.

        The date and whether the executives will appear in person or virtually, as has become common during the coronavirus pandemic, are still being discussed, Ms. Reddick-Smith said.

      • USMCA, Trump’s new NAFTA deal, explained in 600 words

        Intellectual [sic] property [sic] and digital trade: The deal extends the terms of copyright to 70 years beyond the life of the author (up from 50). It also includes new provisions to deal with the digital economy, such as prohibiting duties on things like music and ebooks, and protections for [I]nternet companies so they’re not liable for content their users produce.

        Sunset clause: The agreement adds a 16-year sunset clause — meaning the terms of the agreement expire, or “sunset,” after 16 years. The deal is also subject to a review every six years, at which point the US, Mexico, and Canada can decide to extend the USMCA.

      • A Trendy Rage: Boycotting Facebook and the Stop Hate for Profit Campaign

        Rage can be that most trendy of things, and social media rage has become modish. If you dislike something, scream it in a certain number of characters and post it on every network you subscribe to. You might even feel good about it. When the pot is taken off the boil, the matter goes away. Things cool till other ingredients are added. The moralist can keep silent till the next rage breaks.

      • With Edge, Microsoft’s forced Windows updates just sank to a new low

        If I told you that my entire computer screen just got taken over by a new app that I’d never installed or asked for — it just magically appeared on my desktop, my taskbar, and preempted my next website launch — you’d probably tell me to run a virus scanner and stay away from shady websites, no?

        But the insanely intrusive app I’m talking about isn’t a piece of ransomware. It’s Microsoft’s new Chromium Edge browser, which the company is now force-feeding users via an automatic update to Windows.

        Seriously, when I restarted my Windows 10 desktop this week, an app I’d never asked for…

      • Patents

        • Global Patent Prosecution – June 2020

          In some circumstances, appealing the rejection of a patent application is the only practical recourse a patent applicant may have to advance prosecution. In doing so, the patent applicant can appeal an examiner’s decision refusing to grant a patent application to an administrative panel. This issue of Global Patent Prosecution discusses various considerations patent applicants may take into account when appealing their patent applications at the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), European Patent Office (EPO), and China National Intellectual Property Administration (CNIPA).

        • Patents on genetically modified chimpanzees scrapped

          Two patents relating to the genetic modification of apes were removed by the European Patent Office (EPO) on Thursday. The patents themselves still exist but can no longer include apes, an EPO spokesperson said.

          Animal welfare activists have celebrated the decision as a success, including world-renowned British primatologist Jane Goodall who called it a “wise and responsible decision.”

          The assigning of patents resulted in “the suffering of these animals without any substantial medical benefit to man or animal,” the EPO said.

          The controversy arose after a US company filed two patents claiming that genetically modified chimpanzees as well as other animal species, were an invention that could be used in experiments. The patents were filed in 2012 and 2013, with 14,000 signatories supporting groups that opposed the patents.

        • EPO reports emissions cut and new partnerships

          The European Patent Office (EPO) has published its first annual review of its current strategic plan, revealing progress on international partnerships and environmental sustainability.

      • Copyrights

        • Simon & Schuster was unaware of Mary Trump’s NDA, already printed copies of book

          The publisher of Mary Trump’s potentially explosive tell-all memoir reportedly revealed in a Tuesday night court filing that the company already printed 75,000 copies of the book — after publication was temporarily blocked earlier in the day.

          Simon & Schuster also wrote it was only recently made aware of the nondisclosure agreement the author signed as part of a dispute over the 1999 will of President Trump’s father, Fred Trump, the Washington Post reported.

        • New York Times Selectively Cracks Down on ‘Copyright Infringing’ Trump Meme

          Twitter has removed a Trump meme posted by the US President himself. The social media platform took action after the New York Times sent a copyright complaint. The news organization owns the related copyright and can have the tweet removed. However, it doesn’t appear interested in going after others sharing the same meme.

        • The Pirate Bay: VPN Provider OVPN Hit With Court Injunction, Vows to Fight

          After an injunction obtained by two movie studios against an ISP with alleged links to The Pirate Bay was dismissed, the parties have returned to court demanding that VPN provider OVPN hands over information relating to the notorious site. OVPN informs TF they will fight the injunction “the entire way”.


Links 2/7/2020: Microsoft Partner Says GNU/Linux Share in Desktops/Laptops at 4% Even After Lock-downs, OpenSUSE Leap 15.2 and Mageia 8 Alpha 1 Released

Posted in News Roundup at 1:04 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Raspberry Pi 4: Chronicling the Desktop Experience – Manage your Personal Collections – Week 36

      This is a weekly blog about the Raspberry Pi 4 (“RPI4”), the latest product in the popular Raspberry Pi range of computers.

      If you’re like me, you’ll have a few collections. Books, movies, coins, whatever takes your interest. Keeping track of that collection can be time-consuming, but it’s important to any serious collector. I was therefore keen to test a few open source collection managers on the RPI4.

      I’ve tested Tellico, GCStar, and Alexandria (the latter not to be confused with Alexandra, a separate project).

    • The Linux-friendly Ghost Canyon Intel NUC 9 Extreme is finally available for purchase

      Intel’s diminutive NUC bare-bones computers are quite a bit of fun. Not only are they cute and tiny, but once you add RAM and storage, they can run both Windows 10 and Linux brilliantly. Hell, I am currently running macOS on one as a “Hackintosh” (Shh! Don’t tell Apple). The only knock on the NUC is that you can’t really upgrade the GPU. Unless your NUC has Thunderbolt 3 and you add a pricey eGPU, you are essentially stuck with Intel’s ho-hum onboard graphics.

      With the unveiling of the “Ghost Canyon” Intel NUC 9, however, this changed. While obviously bigger than earlier NUC models, this unit can accommodate a proper gaming card from AMD or NVIDIA (if you choose to add one). You can even eventually upgrade the CPU with what Intel calls replaceable “compute elements.” And now, if you have some money to spare, you can finally buy the top model of Ghost Canyon — the drool-worthy Intel NUC 9 Extreme is available today!

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • Linux Marketshare Climbed to All-Time High in June, Stats Show

        A new month means new Linux marketshare stats from net analytics company NetMarketshare and they show Linux and Ubuntu usage is up for the fourth consecutive month in a row.

        The share of Linux desktops monitored by the firm’s technology has grown consistently and continually for several months. The figures for June 2020 don’t prove the exception with Linux rising from 3.17 percent in May 2020 to 3.61 percent in June 2020…

      • The Linux market share appears to continue rising with Ubuntu winning

        Take it with your usual dose of salt and scepticism but when looking over the Linux market share, at least on NetMarketShare it appears to continue rising.

        While the latest from the Steam Survey shows a dip during June, the opposite is true here. We reported last month that NetMarketShare was showing a clear upwards trend. The sort of thing you can easily write-off across one or two months but now three months in a row it gives it a bit more credit.

        Going from 1.36% in March 2020, up to 2.87% in April, 3.17% in May and now June’s figure is in with 3.61%. Looking over past figures from them, this might be the first time we’ve ever seen it rise three months in a row without a break. This is not counting Chrome OS either, like some other stats end up bundling with Linux. Chrome OS has stayed around ~0.40%, with Ubuntu over this period rising from 0.27% in March to 2.57% in June which is crazy.

      • Steam On Linux Is Still Bouncing Around 0.9% For Summer 2020

        With the start of a new month comes the latest numbers out of Valve for the rough Linux gaming market percentage from the Steam Survey.

        For June 2020 the company is reporting a 0.88% marketshare for Linux, or roughly 0.03% drop. Quite close to being flat month over month. But year-over-year it’s up with last year’s numbers for June coming in at 0.78%, which given the ever increasing Steam userbase is a good sign that the Linux gaming marketshare is growing albeit ever so slightly.

      • OneGx1 mini laptop tested running Linux Ubuntu 20.04

        Brad Linder from Liliputing has been putting the OneGx1 mini laptop through its paces running Linux Ubuntu 20.04. Linder explains, “I decided to take Ubuntu 20.04 LTS for a spin, and I was pleasantly surprised that most of the OneGx1 hardware was supported. But there are a few things that could certainly work better.”

      • Linux on the OneGx1 mini laptop: Running Ubuntu 20.04

        The One Netbook OneGx1 mini laptop is an unusual little computer that features a 7 inch display, an Intel Core i5-10210Y quad-core processor, and a physical design clearly inspired by gaming laptops. It supports an optional set of detachable game controllers that can clip onto the sides of the device. And One Netbook offers the OneGx1 with optional support for 4G LTE or 5G cellular networks.

        As I discovered after spending a few days testing the OneGx1, it offers decent performance for general purpose computing, but gaming is a bit of a mixed bag. But that was with Windows 10. What about other operating systems?

    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • FLOSS Weekly 585: Linux Professional Institute

        In this episode, we discuss open source certification as well as career support offered through LPI. Doc Searls and Aaron Newcomb interview Jon “Maddog” Hall, who is a committed educator and a community developer. He is the board chair at LPI as well as the Co-founder and Senior Adviser to Caninos Loucos, which is a project to get Single Board Computers (SBCs) designed and built-in Brazil. This allows students to receive needed supplies to go to university. He is also the President of Project Cauã, which teaches university students how to run their own IT business and work part-time as they go to school.

      • 2020-07-01 | Linux Headlines

        Mozilla’s Firefox 78 rollout is not going smoothly, antirez steps down as the Redis Labs leader, Couchbase debuts a new managed service, the ArcMenu GNOME extension introduces new features, and manjaro32 closes its doors.

      • Destination Linux 180: Is Matrix.org The Future of Communication? + Linux Mint 20 & Firefox VPN

        00:00:00 Intro
        00:00:24 Welcome to DL180
        00:00:45 What Ryan has been up to . . .
        00:02:07 What Michael has been up to . . .
        00:04:24 What Noah has been up to . . .
        00:04:38 Discussion: ProtonMail and their aim at Google’s GSuite
        00:06:42 Noah shows that his segues are legendary
        00:07:00 Sponsored by Digital Ocean · [do.co/dln]
        00:09:07 Community Feedback about the Pinebook Pro and some issues with it
        00:10:01 Ryan’s response to the feedback
        00:11:03 Noah’s response to the feedback
        00:12:14 DLN Forum & Telegram group are great places for tech help
        00:12:45 News: Mozilla announces the Firefox VPN service
        00:18:06 News: Linux Mint 20 Released
        00:30:04 Main Topic: Matrix / Riot Might Be The Future of Communication
        00:52:03 Linux Gaming: Ryan Gives Noah Suggestions for FPS Games on Linux
        00:59:51 Software Spotlight: Tux Typing
        01:01:14 Tip of the Week: Increase Your Terminal History Size
        01:03:16 Outro
        01:03:24 Get More DL by Becoming a Patron
        01:04:20 DLN Store destinationlinux.network/store
        01:04:55 How to Join the DLN Community
        01:04:58 Noah’s delivery of this part is totally lit
        01:05:40 Destination Linux Network destinationlinux.network
        01:06:00 FrontPageLinux.com frontpagelinux.com
        01:06:15 Patron Post Show (become a Patron to Join us each week!)

      • BSD Now 357: Study the Code

        OpenBSD 6.7 on PC Engines, NetBSD code study, DRM Update on OpenBSD, Booting FreeBSD on HPE Microserver SATA port, 3 ways to multiboot, and more.

      • Slow Cooked Servers | Self-Hosted 22

        Chris is slow cooking some servers, Alex has self-hosted AI with a nasty gotcha and a damp basement.

      • Ubuntu Podcast from the UK LoCo: S13E15 – Vertical chopsticks

        This week we’ve been helping HMRC and throwing a 10th birthday party. We discuss “Rolling Rhino”, split personality snaps, UBPorts supporting Project Treble devices, ZFS on Ubuntu 20.04 plus our round-up from the tech news.

      • The Linux Link Tech Show Episode 864

        sodipodi, 3d printing a camper, arm supercomputer, novell, opensuse

    • Kernel Space

      • Linux 5.7.7

        I’m announcing the release of the 5.7.7 kernel.

        All users of the 5.7 kernel series must upgrade.

        The updated 5.7.y git tree can be found at:
        git://git.kernel.org/pub/scm/linux/kernel/git/stable/linux-stable.git linux-5.7.y
        and can be browsed at the normal kernel.org git web browser:


      • Linux 5.4.50
      • Linux 4.19.131
      • Linux 4.14.187
      • Linux 4.9.229
      • Linux 4.4.229
      • Graphics Stack

        • Intel’s IGC 1.0.4241 Graphics Compiler Adds DG1 Platform Support

          Significant with this new version of the IGC compiler is the DG1 platform is supported, their first graphics card. IGC already supported Gen12/Xe while now the initial bits are in place for the forthcoming DG1 discrete graphics card. For weeks now we’ve been seeing Intel’s many open-source developers posting new DG1 enablement patches from the Linux kernel through their Mesa stack to the media encode/decode driver and now working its way into DG1 for their compute stack. Obviously you also need to be running on the future Linux 5.9 kernel and more for getting this DG1 support all aligned but at least the IGC side work is now in place.

        • Weston 9.0 release schedule
          Hi all,
          Here is the release schedule for Weston 9.0, the next major version:
          - Alpha: July 30th, in 4 weeks
          - Beta: August 13th
          - RC1: August 27th
          - First possible release: September 3rd
          Package maintainers are encouraged to pick up the pre-releases to make
          sure packaging can be tested (and fixed) before the stable release.
          Let me know if there's something in particular you want merged for 9.0.
          Simon Ser
        • Wayland’s Weston 9.0 Aims For Release In Early September

          With Weston 8.0 having shipped in January, Wayland developers are beginning to prepare for the next feature release of this reference Wayland compositor.

          Simon Ser has once again stepped up to take over Weston release management duties. He is planning to tag the Weston 9.0 Alpha at the end of June, a Weston 9.0 Beta in mid-August, and a first release candidate at the end of April. If all goes well he hopes to ship Weston 9.0 on 3 September but could be delayed by some days if additional release candidates are warranted.

        • LLVMpipe Gallium3D Driver Now Exposes OpenGL 4.0

          The LLVMpipe Gallium3D driver that provides a software/CPU-based OpenGL implementation for running on systems as a fallback path when no GPU / hardware OpenGL driver is available, a vendor-neutral path for debug purposes, and similar use-cases, now has OpenGL 4.0 support.

        • NVIDIA Video Codec SDK 10 Brings Few Changes For This Proprietary Library

          NVIDIA has quietly released Video Codec SDK 10 as the newest version of their proprietary video encode/decode implementation designed for their GPUs.


          NVIDIA has already contributed to FFMpeg support for using the new NVENC presets, multi-pass encode modes, and low-delay key frame scaling for this video library as part of the Video Codec SDK 10 support. A follow-up commit added additional H.264 levels now supported.

        • RadeonSI Switches To Make Greater Wave64 Use On Navi

          While RDNA/Navi brought Wave32 support, the open-source RadeonSI Gallium3D driver for Linux has decided to switch to make greater use now of Wave64 for more shaders.


          The change to use Wave64 for more shader stages was merged this week for Mesa 20.2. The commit does add the new “nggctess” perf flag for always using NGG culling for tessellation, complementing the existing nggc (for always using NGG culling) and nonggc for disabling NGG culling.

        • Mike Blumenkrantz: Binding Locations

          So let’s get down to pixels. The UBO indexing is now fixed-ish, which means moving onto the next step: setting up bindings for the UBOs.

          A binding in this context is the numeric id assigned to a UBO for the purposes of accessing it from a shader, which also corresponds to the uniform block index. In mesa, this is the struct nir_variable::data.binding member of a UBO. A load_ubo instruction will take this value as its first parameter, which means there’s a need to ensure that everything matches up just right.

    • Benchmarks

      • Benchmarking The Performance Overhead To LKRG 0.8 For Better Security

        Back in March I benchmarked the Linux Kernel Runtime Guard (LKRG) as a means of achieving additional security safeguards for a ~5% performance hit. With LKRG 0.8 having been released a few days ago, here is a fresh look at the LKRG performance compared to the stock kernel on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS.

        LKRG adds runtime integrity checking to the Linux kernel and other runtime detection of security exploits. LKRG 0.8 was released last week and the focus of our latest benchmarking. LKRG 0.8 adds new safeguards as well as support for newer kernel builds, experimental 32-bit ARM and Raspberry Pi support, new tunables, and other changes.

    • Applications

      • Unblock Websites Restricted By ISPs In Some Countries With GreenTunnel

        So how does this unblock websites? GreenTunnel runs as a localhost HTTP proxy server that does the following.

        For HTTP, GreenTunnel sends requests in 2 parts, for example GET / HTTP/1.0 \n Host: www.you as the first part, and tube.com \n … as the second part. This way the Internet Service Provider (ISP) doesn’t match the blocked word “youtube” in the packets, and as a result the data is not throttled or blocked.

        In the case of HTTPS, the application splits the first CLIENT_HELLO packet into small chunks so the ISP can’t parse the packet and find the SNI (Server Name Indication, an extension of TLS that indicates the actual destination hostname a client is attempting to access over HTTPS) field.

        As for DNS (Domain Name System), GreenTunnel makes use of DNS over HTTPS and DNS over TLS to get the real IP address and prevent DNS hijacks.

      • The best photo-editing software in 2020 [Ed: A lot here is proprietary]

        An open-source photo editor that debuted on Unix-based platforms, GIMP stands for GNU Image Manipulation Program. Today it’s available in versions for Linux, Windows and Mac. GIMP offers a wide toolset – everything you’re accustomed to is within easy reach, including painting tools, colour correction, cloning, selection, and enhancement.

        The team that oversees development has worked hard to ensure compatibility too, so you’ll be able to work with all the popular file formats without any trouble at all. You’ll also find a very capable file manager built in, along similar lines to Adobe’s Bridge.

      • The Best Free Software of 2020 [Ed: A lot here is not free but a trap; also proprietary]

        Open-source Audacity can record and edit audio files on more tracks than you can imagine. It then outputs exactly what you need, even to MP3 if you use a plug-in. It is perfect for noobs and pros alike, on any desktop OS.

      • The 10 Best Cross-Platform Task Apps

        Task management apps have surely made life simpler for many. There are scores of software in the market which handle a variety of tasks such as accounting software, office suits, and management tools, etc.

        However at times, despite having such software, it becomes challenging to hop from one task to another on your to-do-list because of priorities, different clients, and deadlines to meet. But, fortunately, there are lots of software that are dedicated for task management.

        Such software not only organizes workflow but also improves one’s capability to handle challenging tasks, especially when it comes to an individual task with several requirements.

        Through this article, we will introduce you to some of the best cross-platform task apps which will manage your business and work needs.

      • Daniel Stenberg: curl 7.71.1 – try again

        This is a follow-up patch release a mere week after the grand 7.71.0 release. While we added a few minor regressions in that release, one of them were significant enough to make us decide to fix and ship an update sooner rather than later. I’ll elaborate below.

        Every early patch release we do is a minor failure in our process as it means we shipped annoying/serious bugs. That of course tells us that we didn’t test all features and areas good enough before the release. I apologize.

      • Daniel Stenberg: Video: testing curl for security
    • Instructionals/Technical

    • Games

      • Chrome OS to run Steam starting with 10th Gen Intel Chromebooks
      • Chrome OS will get Steam as part of new Linux virtualization environment

        Back in January, we exclusively reported that Google wants to add Steam to Chrome OS and introduce more powerful Chromebooks, possibly running on AMD silicon. Now further details have emerged. 9to5Google found a new Linux emulator in the Google’s Chromium Gerrit codenamed “Borealis” that includes a pre-installed copy of Steam. It might even replace the current Linux implementation in the long term.

        Chrome OS has had a virtual Linux emulator in beta for more than a year, codenamed Crostini. It’s not a full-blown separate OS but more of a collection of compatibility software that helps seamlessly integrate Linux apps with the rest of the Chrome OS interface. We can assume this is the model Borealis and the pre-installed Steam will adopt.

      • Google Confirms Massive Upgrade For Chrome Users

        What brings about such a big change? It’s a technology called Segment Heap, which Microsoft introduced in its Windows 10 May 2020 update. Segment Heap optimizes memory management and Microsoft said early tests on Chromium-based browsers immediately saw memory consumption reduced by as much as 27%. Google engineers concurred saying: “Experiments with per-machine opting-in to the segment heap for chrome.exe suggests that this could save hundreds of MB in the browser.”

        But the shock here is how quickly Google has got this working, with Chrome programmer Bruce Dawson revealing “This change made it into today’s Chrome Canary (Version 85.0.4182.0 (Official Build) canary (64-bit)… I can confirm that the segment heap is enabled.”

        Chrome Canary primarily targets developers, so I would not advise you use it as your primary browser. That said, this is no either/or situation and those keen to discover the benefits of Segment Heap can run Chrome Canary alongside the standard version, keeping any essential tabs away from the developer edition.

      • Steam is Coming to Chromebooks with Ubuntu-based “Borealis” Feature

        Chrome OS has the ability to run desktop and command line Linux apps now Google plans to expand this support to include Linux games too.

        And when we’re talking about gaming on Linux we’re of course talking about Steam, the premiere games distribution platform created by Valve that is available natively for Linux desktop operating systems.

        Google equipping Chrome OS’s gaming feature as part of a project called “Borealis“. This is not only enigmatic sounding but also hugely exciting if you are an Ubuntu fan.

      • Chrome OS appears to be edging closer to Steam support with Linux

        Looks like Linux gaming may get yet another boost, thanks to Google? Yes. Backing up previous information on Steam support coming to Chrome OS it looks like the project is still going.

        This isn’t some kind of wild rumour either, given the previous info with Google’s own Kan Liu confirming their plans. This time the report comes from 9to5Google, which points out something being worked on called “Borealis” which appears to be a kind of Virtual Machine with a full copy of Ubuntu and Steam pre-installed and ready to go. It’s interesting as they already had Crostini with Debian but it appears they’re going a different way for Steam.

      • Kerbal Space Program ‘Shared Horizons’ is out with ESA missions and comets

        Ready to spend another thousand hours building spaceships and now chasing comets? Take charge of the Kerbal Space Program once again in the latest free upgrade.

        This is quite a significant update to KSP too, bringing in their European Space Agency (ESA) content including the ESA space-suit texture, new parts and variants, and two of their most iconic and groundbreaking missions into the game. So now you will be able to build the Ariane 5, visit comets and more.

      • Dark sci-fi action RPG ‘Hellpoint’ launches July 30

        Hellpoint from Cradle Games and tinyBuild is now set to officially release with Linux support on July 30. Originally funded on Kickstarter back in 2017, with 1,351 backers pledging around $63,553 Canadian Dollars we’re keen to see the full release.

        Set in the aftermath of a massive quantum cataclysm called the Merge. You wake up on board the Irid Novo space station, a beacon of galactic cooperation and scientific exploration where everything has gone horribly wrong. What happens next will be solely determined by your choices.

      • The ‘Update of Plenty’ has arrived for Dead Cells – revamping lots

        The 19th update for Dead Cells is a bit of a big one, overhauling quite a lot of game mechanics and the overall difficulty.

        “Dead Cells is a rogue-lite, metroidvania inspired, action-platformer. You’ll explore a sprawling, ever-changing castle… assuming you’re able to fight your way past its keepers in 2D souls-lite combat. No checkpoints. Kill, die, learn, repeat.”

        One of my favourite indie games by far, and awesome to see it continue to update and expand. This time they’re not adding in new enemies and weapons but going over Dead Cells with a fine-tooth comb to ensure your play-through is as smooth as it can be.

      • Thief inspired FOSS stealth game The Dark Mod has a massive new release

        The Dark Mod, a free and open-source first-person stealth game inspired by the Thief series has a huge new release up.

        Powered by the open-source id Tech 4 game engine (the Doom 3 engine), The Dark Mod is an impressive stand-alone project that has quite a lot of community-created mission packs available. The Dark Mod 2.08 has been in development for over a year, and it’s quite an impressive boost with lots of underlying modern tech upgrades like using more modern OpenGL techniques.

      • A chat with the developer of the action-packed roguelike Burning Knight

        Burning Knight is a recently released action-packed roguelike, featuring slick pixel-art and fantastic lighting along with plenty of over the top action and a little sprinkle of comedy.

        As part of our ongoing series of speaking to game developers, we sat down and had a chat with the developer about it and how the release went.

      • Panzer General – A supreme classic revisited

        Roughly 25 years ago, I remember playing Panzer General for the first time. The game’s hexagonal-map, turn-based, inventory-and-strategy style grabbed me instantly, and became one of the enduring classics on my proverbial digital shelf of good ole antiquities. A few days ago, I fired up DOSBox and had another go at Panzer General. Not sure what prompted me to play it again, perhaps inspiration following a recent bout of reading military history books on Stalingrad and Berlin, or perhaps a big-boy-toy warehouse management OCD itch that lurks in every grown man. Or just the fact it’s a darn good game, and it’s time to play it, enjoy it, review it.

        It may sound unusual talking about a 1994 game title – but hey, classics be classics. I did mention it in one of my DOSBox compilations on old game revival, but now I want to give it a proper, in-depth review, even if most of you won’t be able to play it, or even find it. Besides, it’s a trip down the memory lane. I don’t remember the full journey, but I did preserve the game and its save files carefully over the years, from floppy (maybe) to CD to DVD to a folder on a disk, which could be mounted and summoned at will. My original game saves are there, most of them, the earliest dating back to 2000, and the newest to 2007. So not only do I get to have fresh fun, I also have a glimpse of my own military cunning two decades removed. Well, let’s blitz.

      • Chrome OS preparing Steam gaming support, starting with 10th Gen Intel Chromebooks

        Earlier this year, it was reported that Google was working to bring Steam to Chrome OS. We’ve now discovered how Chrome OS will run Steam and which Chromebooks will support it to start.

        For over a year now, Chrome OS has had support for running Linux apps, a project also known as “Crostini.” Under the hood, Crostini runs an entire Linux distribution in a virtual machine, vaguely similar to a developer running an Android emulator on their desktop. (You can think of a Linux distribution as a complete operating system package, usually with its own unique flair.)

        Over the past few weeks, we’ve been tracking a new project within the Chromium open-source code under the codename “Borealis.” Based on some of the related code changes, Borealis seems to also be related to virtual machines for Chrome OS.

        Through a fair bit of digging, we were able to obtain a copy of Borealis, which turned out to be another full Linux distribution. Unlike Crostini, which is based on Debian, Borealis is based on Ubuntu, another popular variety of Linux. Just like the existing Linux apps support, we believe Borealis will integrate itself with Chrome OS rather than being a full desktop experience.

        However, we found one key difference between Borealis and a normal installation of Ubuntu, as Borealis includes a pre-installed copy of Steam. This lines up with what we learned at CES 2020, when Kan Liu, Google’s director of product management for Chrome OS, shared that the upcoming Steam gaming support would be based on Linux.

      • The Dark Mod 2.08 Released As One Of The Few Games Powered By Open-Source id Tech 4

        There is finally a new release out of The Dark Mod, the original total conversion mod for Doom 3 that transformed into its own standalone game powered by the open-source id Tech 4 engine. This remains the lone flagship example of the open-source id Tech 4 game engine in action by the community (besides the DHEWM3 / RBDOOM-3-BFG engine work) with ioDoom3 having never taken off like ioquake3.

        The Dark Mod 2.08 is shipping with fixes for its multi-threading support, uncapped FPS, and better x86 64-bit support.There is also improved coding standards, replacing legacy OpenGL usage with more modern OpenGL usage, better visuals thanks to SSAO and other rendering improvements, AI improvements, gameplay enhancements, better mapping toolkit support, and all around performance improvements. The multi-core support in particular is no longer considered experimental.

      • Stadia exclusive Crayta is out, plus more Stadia Pro titles and UI updates

        Crayta, the promising looking multiplayer game creation tool is now available exclusively on Stadia and there’s more Stadia news to cover today.


        The big one is Crayta, which allows people to jump into games together online and also make their own. It comes ready with multiple games like Prop Hunt, Crayta Cooking (looks like Overcooked), Disaster Party where you need to just stay alive as long as possible and more.

      • Sandbox vehicle building adventure ‘TerraTech’ gets some fun new tech

        Although it already has tons of blocks to make crazy vehicles with, Payload Studios clearly aren’t finished expanding TerraTech and this latest update looks fun.

        Mixing together a block-based vehicle building system, open-world environments and a full sandbox-style campaign where you go at your own pace, TerraTech can be a lot of fun if you enjoy getting lost in a big world. It’s satisfying mix of scavenging, crafting, combat and exploration together make for a fun experience.

        You can build some truly insane stuff too and the latest set of blocks and missions are in with the Reticule Research update.

      • Open source OpenXR runtime ‘Monado’ expands with multi-application support

        Monado is the in-development OpenXR runtime for VR / AR on Linux and Collabora continue to make excellent progress on bringing it up to eventually support more platforms and features.

        Currently developed for Linux while they get as much feature and hardware support as possible, it’s taken another big step recently. The team recently implemented OpenXR’s XR_EXTX_overlay extension, which will now expose the multi-application capabilities of Monado which was recently merged into the project.

      • Now crowdfunding – Neko Ghost, Jump! blends 2D and 3D puzzle-platforming

        After a puzzle-platformer that’s a little unique and challenging? Neko Ghost, Jump! blends together traditional 2D platforming and 3D modes to offer a fresh take.

        Mentioned very briefly here on GOL back in February, it’s quite a sweet idea. You’re able to switch between modes at any time during a level and you need to do so in order to complete the puzzles since some paths, obstacles and enemies might be hidden in one view.

        It’s now crowdfunding on Kickstarter to get the monies needed to finish it, with a $15,000 base goal and it has until July 31 to hit it. The demo that was previously available was also expanded to include Ghost Blocks that you need to change into a special ghost form to interact with, 9 languages, new artwork and performance optimizations.

      • Linux-powered Atari VCS ships for backers in October, full release by end of year

        It seems the Atari VCS is not dead and will actually be seeing a launch this year, as Atari themselves have now confirmed.

        After a successful crowdfunding campaign on IndieGoGo that raised over three million dollars they’ve seen repeated delays, a lawsuit or two and plenty of ridicule from other publications. Still, they kept at it, giving out updates on their Medium blog about the ongoing production and optimization process.

        Back in April they claimed mass production had started, although when you saw the actual post details it was only 500 units total. Not exactly mass production but okay, whatever. Last month in June they mentioned they had 96 actually be delivered to them, although 500 were in fact produced with “more than 10,000 VCS units this summer” to be ready.

      • Atari VCS is going directly head-to-head with the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X this Christmas

        Atari have announced that their long in-development PC/console hybrid is going to be arriving with their crowdfunding backers this October before going on general sale in time for Christmas.

        The Atari VCS looks lovely, but it certainly is going to be a hard sell to the wider public – we’re still unsure who they’re actually targeting. The system will be packed with a number of classic Atari titles along with support for AntStream Arcade for retro classics across other platforms. It supposedly is also a full PC that can run other OSes through the Sandbox mode meaning you can pop Windows 10 onto an external drive and access your Steam, Epic and other libraries.

        The Atari VCS features an AMD Raven Ridge 2 CPU alongside an unspecified AMD Ryzen GPU. It will pack with 4GB or 8GB RAM and internal storage of 32GB with support for external hard drives.

        The HDMI output supports 4K video and the OS is based on Ubuntu, but as mentioned you can install your own OS on there if you choose.

      • 11 years ago this month GOL was created, Happy Birthday to GamingOnLinux

        From the rise and fall of LinuxGamePublishing, Humble Indie Bundles, the indie store Desura rising and falling, Steam and GOG started supporting Linux, itch.io grew much bigger, the Vulkan API being formally released, Steam Machines plus SteamOS, Steam Play, the slow rise of game streaming services and more. We’ve seen such a huge amount of ups and downs over the years. We plan to continue going for the next 11 years and beyond too! So we hope you will stick with us for daily Linux + Gaming news.

      • Command the undead as shields and weapons in Millions of Minions

        Millions of Minions: An Underground Adventure is a brand new dungeon crawler that recently released into Steam Early Access, giving a slightly unique take on it.

        With a setting and layout clearly inspired by the likes of Isaac and others, you crawl through a dungeon with small enclosed rooms as you fight off waves of enemies. Here though you’re not using swords or anything like that, instead you gather energy and summon a bunch of little minions. You then use them as shields and send them flying towards enemies. It’s actually a little amusing.


        There’s a demo up on Steam too if you want to try before you buy. I’ve spent a little time with it and while it feels a lot more simpler than the likes of The Binding of Isaac, the streamlined feel might be better for quick runs when you’re shorter on time. It will be interesting to see how much they do expand this over Early Access.

      • Craft slick chiptune music for games or fun as FamiStudio adds Linux builds

        FamiStudio, a pretty fun looking program designed for people making chiptune music and NES homebrewers recently had a big new release and it came with their first Linux build.

        Quite an impressive feature set too with it being able to export to various formats, not only that though the editor itself has some sweet features. Some you would expect like Copy/Paste and Undo/Redo along with Volume, fine pitch, vibrato effect tracks and more. The latest release adds in some great sounding features too (on top of Linux support) like trackpad controls, a command-line interface, extended MIDI keyboard support, improved WAV export and import of instruments from any supported format.

      • FMV mystery thriller ‘Jessika’ will launch on August 25

        Assemble Entertainment and Tritrie Games have confirmed that Jessika, a full-motion video mystery-adventure will be launching with Linux support on August 25.

        Your job as a digital content specialist is to go through the footprint left behind by deceased people, on behalf of their relatives. In Jessika, the subject is a sensitive one as it’s touching on suicide and it seems their family are determined to find out why. What at first seems to be a job like any other quickly develops into a dark drama with twists and turns.

      • FNA3D now has Vulkan support in Alpha, FNA 20.07 is out

        FNA3D, the upcoming advanced graphics library for FNA has reached a new milestone on the way to full Vulkan support.

        As a refresher – FNA was originally a fork of MonoGame, with an aim to be an accuracy-focused reimplementation of Microsoft’s XNA. It’s since expanded and improved in huge ways and FNA3D is the next step. FNA3D was announced back in May, as a more advanced rendering system for FNA that brings with it better performance and the ability to support other graphics APIs.

        FNA is used in tons of games like TowerFall Ascension, Streets of Rage 4, FEZ, Dust: An Elysian Tail, Rogue Legacy, Chasm, Axiom Verge and the list goes on for a while.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • Modern and Traditional ArcMenu v47 is here with Major Updates

          The ArcMenu team announced the release of its latest version of the traditional and modern menu system for GNOME desktops.

        • Arc Menu 47, Popular Gnome Extension Released With New Layout

          Arc Menu 47, Popular Gnome Extension Released With New Layout

          Arc Menu v47 with a new menu layout called “Tognee” is now available for the download. Arc Menu is a Gnome shell extension designed to replace the standard menu found in Gnome 3.

          “Flip Layout Horizontally” and “Searchbar Location” options is now available in traditional panel layouts.

        • GNOME Shell Review: Minimal Desktop with Great Performance

          If I had to guess, I would probably say that a huge majority of Linux users have/had used GNOME Shell in one way or another. It’s the default Desktop Environment on a huge number of very popular Linux distributions, including Ubuntu, Fedora, and Pop!_OS, and it’s an option for installation on even more. This GNOME Shell review will cover performance, user experience, and recommendations on who will find GNOME Shell to be a good fit.

    • Distributions

      • New Releases

        • Ikey Doherty Is Making a New Distro, Serpent Linux, and We Should All Support Him

          Believe it or not, ex-Solus leader Ikey Doherty is making a new operating system called Serpent Linux, which aims to be a truly modern Linux distro.

          It’s been almost two years since Ikey Doherty, the founder and lead developer of the popular Solus distribution, left the project he loved the most in pursuit of new endeavors.

          After a year long break from the Linux world, he created a new company called Lispy Snake, Ltd., an indie game studio with a focus on developing an open source game engine named Serpent for creating 2D games.

        • Zenwalk 15.0 – milestone 2020 07 02 is ready

          Once a year, Zenwalk Current is considered stable enough for a “milestone” release, here’s Zenwalk 15 milestone 2020.

          Based on Slackware Current July 2020, Zenwalk 15 milestone 2020 is fully compatible.

          As usual, the goal is to provide fast simple setup, refined desktop, selection of the best apps, ease of use, with full respect of the Slackware philosophy.

      • Screenshots/Screencasts

        • Linux Mint 20 “Ulyana” Cinnamon Edition, Full Review

          Linux Mint 20 “Ulyana” was recently released, and in this video we’ll explore some of the highlights and even some of the controversial changes as well. The installation process, Warpinator, and the anti-snap changes are explored, and more.

      • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandriva/OpenMandriva Family

        • The first step towards Mageia 8 – Alpha 1 is available for testing

          We are happy to announce the release of the test images of Mageia 8. These are available to early testers to help with the development towards a stable final release of Mageia 8. There have been large scale updates of all packages as well as new features implemented to improve what Mageia already offered.

        • Mageia 8 Enters Development with Linux Kernel 5.7, Improved ARM Support

          The upcoming Mageia 8 Linux distribution now has a first alpha release that the community can download and test if they want to help the devs fix bugs before the final release or get an early taste of the new features and improvements.

          Donald Stewart announced today the general availability of Mageia 8 Alpha 1, the first step towards the next major release of this wonderful GNU/Linux distribution that continue the legacy of the Mandrake Linux operating system.

          And it’s packed with a lot of goodies, starting with the latest Linux 5.7 kernel series and continuing with better support for ARM devices with dedicated images for some of the most popular of them in the coming months, as well as a much-improved installer with better support for the F2FS (Flash-Friendly File System) and NILFS2 filesystems.

          Mageia 8 also promises faster boot and installation times due to the use of the Zstd (Zstandard) lossless, real-time data compression algorithm that most GNU/Linux distributions are adopting these days. In addition, Zstd is being used to accelerate the package metadata parsing within urpmi package manager.

        • Mageia 8 Alpha 1 Linux distribution now available for download

          Mageia isn’t one of the most popular Linux-based operating systems, but it has its share of fans. The operating system is primarily a KDE affair, although GNOME and Xfce are available desktop environments too. It is a quality distro that you should check out if interested.

          The last major release of Mageia was version 7, which came out nearly a year ago. Today, Mageia 8 Alpha 1 becomes available for download. Despite many Linux distributions stopping development of 32-bit variants, Mageia is apparently not giving up — you can download a special 32-bit ISO that uses the Xfce desktop environment.

      • SUSE/OpenSUSE

        • openSUSE Leap “15.2″ Release Brings Exciting New Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning, and Container Packages

          The openSUSE release team is proud to announce the availability of community-developed openSUSE Leap 15.2. Professional users, from desktops and data-center servers to container hosts and Virtual Machines (VM), will be able to use Leap 15.2 as a high-quality, easy-to-use, enterprise-grade Linux operating system.

        • OpenSUSE Leap 15.2 Released With AI/ML Packages Added, YaST Improvements

          OpenSUSE Leap 15.2 is out today as the Linux distribution built from the same sources as SUSE Linux Enterprise 15 sources.

          OpenSUSE Leap 15.2 adds a number of new packages, particularly on the machine learning and artificial intelligence front. Tensorflow, PyTorch, ONNX, and other popular AI/ML solutions are finally packaged up for openSUSE Leap. Leap 15.2 also has Kubernetes support available as an official package for the first time. There are also a variety of other container additions to Leap 15.2 in catching up to the other Linux distributions catering to container workloads.

        • OpenSUSE Leap 15.2 released

          The openSUSE Leap 15.2 release is now available; see the announcement for a long list of new features. “In general, software packages in the distribution grew by the hundreds. Data fusion, Machine Learning and AI aren’t all that is new in openSUSE Leap 15.2; a Real-Time Kernel for managing the timing of microprocessors to ensure time-critical events are processed as efficiently as possible is available in this release.”

        • openSUSE Leap 15.2 Released With Focus on Containers, AI and Encryption

          openSUSE Leap 15.2 has finally landed with some useful changes and improvements.

          Also, considering the exciting announcement of Closing the Leap Gap, the release of openSUSE Leap 15.2 brings us one step closer to SLE (SUSE Linux Enterprise) binaries being integrated to openSUSE Leap 15.3 next.

          Let’s take a look at what has changed and improved in openSUSE Leap 15.2.

        • openSUSE Leap 15.2 Officially Released, Here’s What’s New

          The openSUSE Project released today openSUSE Leap 15.2, the second major installment in the latest openSUSE Leap 15 operating system series, based on SUSE Linux Enterprise 15 SP2.

          openSUSE Leap 15.2 comes more than a year after openSUSE Leap 15.1 to bring you not only software updates and security fixes, but also new applications and technologies. Most specifically, it brings exciting new Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), and Deep Learning (DL) technologies.

          Among these, there’s Tensorflow, a deep learning framework used by data scientists for numerical computations and data-flow graphs, PyTorch, a machine learning library, ONNX, a program that provides interoperability in the AI tool space, as well as the Grafana and Prometheus tools for creating interactive visual analytics.

        • Review of the HP Pavilion 14-ce0830nd

          Would I recommend the HP Pavilion 14-ce0830nd? To be honest, its a mixed bag on openSUSE. Installation of openSUSE Leap 15.2 was very easy. And installation of a dual boot system with Windows 10 was easy as well. The laptop has an attractive look and feel. The display, speakers, keyboard and external ports are all good. The touchpad is too sensitive. The machine has enough RAM, enough storage and the hard drives are performant. The Intel CPU/GPU is great. Which means that this is a great machine for multitasking. The gaming performance on the Intel GPU on openSUSE Leap 15.2 is good enough to play various open source games on medium/high settings.

      • Slackware Family

        • Netpkg 7.0 : simpler, faster tool to manage packages

          Netpkg 7.0 has been released.

          Netpkg is the original network package management tool provided in Zenwalk since 2005, and was the first tool of this kind available for Slackware back in the days.

          Over the years, following users requests, netpkg has evolved into a graphical (GTK) application with CLI counterpart.

          Netpkg is Slackgnostic ;) : it work for any Slackware system.

          The CLI version has proven to be easier for the user, is faster, and requires no dependencies except bash, wget, and a few command line utilities found on any Slackware installation : so it can run in level 3 with just the “ap” packages installed (could even run from the setup from a chrooted mountpoint).

        • Flatpak is available on Zenwalk

          Flatpak is the freedesktop.org software deployment and package management standard for Linux, offering a sandbox environment in which users can run application software in isolation from the rest of the system.

          In Zenwalk : Flatpak is managed through the App Outlet application (https://app-outlet.github.io/).

          You can also browse https://flathub.org/apps, find what you’re looking for (ie : VLC) and just launch “flatpak install VLC” in an unprivileged user terminal.

      • Arch Family

        • First Arch Linux Snapshot Powered by Linux Kernel 5.7 Is Here

          In the first day of every month, we see a new Arch Linux ISO snapshot being released, including the most recent package versions and, occasionally, brand-new GNU/Linux technologies, such as the bump to a newer Linux kernel branch.

          Well, Arch Linux 2020.07.01 has been released today as July 2020’s ISO snapshot, and it’s the first to ship with the latest Linux 5.7 kernel series. While not the latest, Linux 5.7.6 is included in the Arch Linux 2020.07.01 image as the default kernel.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • Systemd 246 Is On The Way With Many Changes

          With it already having been a few months since systemd 245 debuted with systemd-homed, the systemd developers have begun their release dance for what will be systemd 246.

        • Containers: Understanding the difference between portability, compatibility and supportability

          Portability alone does not offer the entire promise of Linux containers. You also need Compatibility and Supportability.

        • Red Hat Updates Ansible Automation Platform

          Red Hat recently announced key enhancements to the Ansible Automation portfolio, including the latest version of Red Hat Ansible Automation Platform and new Red Hat Certified Ansible Content Collections available on Automation Hub.

        • IBM Cloud Pak for Integration in 2 minutes
        • Introducing modulemd-tools

          A lot of teams are involved in the development of Fedora Modularity and vastly more people are affected by it as packagers and end-users. It is obvious, that each group has its own priorities, use-cases and therefore different opinions on what is good or bad about the current state of the project. Personally, I was privileged (or maybe doomed) to represent yet another, often forgotten, group of users – third-party build systems.

          Our team is directly responsible for the development and maintenance of Copr and a few years ago we decided to support building modules alongside building just regular packages. We stumbled upon many frustrating pitfalls that I don’t want to discuss right now but the major one was definitely not enough tools for working with modules. That was understandable in the early stages of the development process but it has been years and we still don’t have the right tools for building modules on our own, without relying on the Fedora infrastructure. You may recall me expressing the need for them at the Flock 2019 conference.

        • GSoC 2020 nmstate project update for June

          This blog is about my experience working in nmstate project and first month in GSoC coding period. I was able to start working on implementing the varlink support mid of community bonding period. This was very helpful because I was able to identify some issues in the python varlink package that was not mentioned in documentation and I had to spend more time finding the cause of the issue. There have been minor changes to proposed code structure and project timeline after the feedback from the community members. In the beginning it was difficult to identify syntax errors in varlink interface definitions. This has been slow progress because of new issues and following are the tasks I have completed so far.

        • Between Two Releases of Ubuntu 20.04 and Fedora 32

          Both Ubuntu Focal Fossa and Fedora 32 released in the same time April this year. They are two operating systems from different families namely Debian and Red Hat. One of their most interesting things in common is the arrival of computer companies like Dell and Star Labs (and Lenovo’s coming) that sell special preinstalled laptops and PCs. I make this summary to remind myself and inform you all growth of these great operating systems. Enjoy!

        • Getting started on your SAP HANA journey with RHEL 8 for SAP Solutions

          Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 8, which was released at the Red Hat Summit in May 2019, can provide significant performance improvements across a range of modern workloads.

          As of March 31, 2020, SAP officially announced the support for SAP HANA 2.0 on Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8.1 for SAP Solutions on Intel 64 and IBM POWER9 architectures.

          With this offering, SAP HANA is fully certified and supported on Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8.1 for SAP Solutions as documented in SAP notes 2777782 and 2235581. Beyond the benefits provided by the latest version of the world’s leading enterprise Linux platform, RHEL 8 for SAP Solutions offers the following components…

        • CI/CD with OpenShift
        • Red Hat Audit to ‘Eradicate’ Problematic Language in Its Code

          Red Hat has become the latest software company pledging to remove “problematic” language from its platforms.

          In a blog post published to the company’s website, Chief Technology Officer Chris Wright said the company would be “standing up a team to audit our own work—our code, documentation and content—and identify potentially divisive language.”

          “When we looked at why certain words are still being used in open source, we questioned why they persisted and what we could do about it,” Wright told Motherboard in an email.

        • System Configuration Proc File System
        • Install VirtualBox 6.1 on Oracle Linux 8
        • Install VirtualBox 6.1 Extension Pack on Oracle Linux 8
      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Linux Mint 20: Still the best Linux desktop despite one quirk

          You’ll also need at least 15GBs of disk space, but I recommend 20GBs. Finally, you’ll need a graphics card and monitor that supports a 1024×768 resolution. In short, you can pretty much run Mint on any PC you find in a second-hand junk store.

          Under the hood, Mint 20 runs on top of the 5.4 Linux kernel. It’s most notable new features are support for AMD Navi 12 and 14 GPUs, AMD Arcturus graphics cards, AMD Dali APU, AMD 2020 APU platforms, and Intel Tiger Lake CPUs.

          One thing you can’t do easily yet is upgrade from Mint 19.3 to 20. Clement “Clem” Lefebvre, Mint’s lead developer, explained, you can’t use the 19.3′s update manager because “the process will be completely different since this is a new major version and a new package base.” By mid-July, Mint will release an easy upgrade path. For now, you must install Mint 20 from scratch.

          For my tests, rather than use old hardware, I used a 2019 Dell XPS 13. This model, which came with Ubuntu 18.04, was powered by an Intel Core i7-10710U processor. It also came with a 512GB SSD and 16GBs of RAM. This is vastly more powerful hardware than you need for Mint.

          First, I installed Linux Mint 19.3 on it so I could get an idea of how well Mint 20 compares to its immediate ancestor. Then, I installed Linux Mint 20 on it with the Cinnamon 4.6 desktop. I did this by downloading the Mint 20′s 2GB ISO image and then burning it to a USB stick. That done, I set the XPS 13′s firmware to boot from the USB stick and installed 20, reset it to boot from the SSD and I was on my way. The entire process, from beginning to end took about half-an-hour.

        • Ubuntu Cinnamon | Review from an openSUSE User

          There is something fun about the smattering of new releases of Ubuntu and flavors every six months. I don’t try them all as I just don’t have the time. I do like to try the new ones, see what they’re all about. It’s one thing to try Kubuntu, where you already know what you are getting, it’s another thing to try a respin, especially one that is brand new to the scene.

          As part of the BDLL community, we are encouraged to try out the new shiny and then talk about it. We had the conversation on the 27th of June, 2020. I didn’t have much to contribute as I was late to the party in testing it. We also had the privilege of having the distribution maintainer and creator, Josh, there as well too.

          Button line up front: Ubuntu Cinnamon, as a new remix was a remarkably enjoyable experience, especially since this is the first release and Josh is, not exactly a seasoned distro maintainer. I am not particularly a fan of Cinnamon and I knew this going into it but was interested in seeing a version of Cinnamon as an alternative to Mint due to their rather poignant stance on the universal Linux package system, Snaps. This is the first release of Ubuntu Cinnamon and I think it is well done. I would not switch to it but I do think it is worth trying, if nothing else, to hedge your Cinnamon bets.

          This is my brief experience as a biased openSUSE User from installation to desktop usage perceptions.

        • What’s New In Ubuntu MATE 20.04 LTS

          The Ubuntu MATE team has been announced and released Ubuntu MATE 20.04 LTS On April 23rd, 2020. Ubuntu MATE 20.04 LTS is the fourth Long Term Support (LTS), It will be supported with security and software updates for 3 years, until April 2023, This release rolls-up various developments, fixes, and optimizations that have been released since the 19.10 LTS.

          Ubuntu MATE 20.04 LTS ships with the latest MATE Desktop Environment 1.24 series by default, Added multiple colored theme variations, panel layout switching which is now stable and reliable via MATE Tweak Tweak and Ubuntu MATE Welcome, The key-bindings for window tiling have only worked on full keyboards, includes a new Indicator that provides a “notification center”

          Based on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS and powered by the most recent and advanced kernel, Long term Support of Linux kernel 5.4. which brings improved hardware support (among other features). A new GTK front end for the firmware update tool is added that lets you upgrade, downgrade, and reinstall firmware on devices supported by Linux Vendor Firmware Service (LVFS), including the LVM and the ZFS option.

        • Linux Mint 20 isn’t exactly bursting with freshness but, hey, there’s kernel 5.4 and it’s a long-term support release

          The Linux Mint team has released Mint 20 Cinnamon, a long-term support (LTS) release. It is based on Ubuntu 20.04, will be supported until 2025, and new Mint versions will use the same package base until 2022.

          Linux Mint comes in three flavours, all of which are now available in Mint 20 “Ulyana” editions. One uses the minimalist Xfce desktop environment. The second, called MATE, uses a fork of the GNOME 2 desktop, while the third, Cinnamon, uses a fork of the GNOME 3 desktop created and maintained by the Mint team. Cinnamon appears to be the most common choice among Mint users. More details on the origins and difference between MATE and Cinnamon are here.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • An Easy Introduction to Open Source Projects

        So what is an open source project anyway? It seems like the answer should be easy. “It’s openly available code,” right? Well, not necessarily. It all depends on how the project is licensed. A license tells other people what they can and cannot do with a project. A project like Unity is openly available but its license states it’s only available for reference, not for modification or redistribution. Other projects are openly available but have no license at all. According to copyright law, this means the project is automatically all rights reserved, meaning it’s illegal to do anything at all with the project without the author’s express permission.

        Neither of these examples are open source projects, because neither of them are licensed in a way that’s in accordance with the Open Source Definition (OSD). This is a set of 10 requirements that a project must meet to be considered “open source.” If a project doesn’t meet each one of those 10 requirements, it violates the OSD and, by definition, is not an open source project.

        The easiest way to make sure a project is actually open source is to look at the license under which it’s released. If it’s an Open Source Initiative-approved license, then you’re guaranteed that the project meets all 10 of the requirements of the OSD and is definitely an open source project. That’s because the Open Source Initiative (OSI), the standards body that maintains and protects the OSD, has reviewed those licenses and confirmed that any project that uses one of them will provide the 10 requirements of the OSD. Projects that use a different non-approved license or no license at all cannot be guaranteed to be open source and may be risky or even illegal to use. Some popular OSI-approved licenses include GNU General Public License GPL, Apache License 2.0, MIT license, and the suite of Creative Commons licenses.


        Some people contribute because they believe in the Four Freedoms and the power that these freedoms have to foster equality and equity for all people. Whatever reasons you have for wanting to contribute, always remember that’s exactly what those reasons are: yours. No one else will have the same needs, goals, or constraints. Your reasons are unique and personal.

      • Web Browsers

        • Mozilla

          • Firefox 78 arrives with accessibility and video call improvements

            Mozilla today launched Firefox 78 for Windows, Mac, and Linux. Firefox 78 includes accessibility features and video call improvements and is the last to support three older macOS releases. You can download Firefox 78 for desktop now from Firefox.com, and all existing users should be able to upgrade to it automatically. According to Mozilla, Firefox has about 250 million active users, making it a major platform for web developers to consider.

            While Google and Microsoft had to adjust their respective browser release schedules due to the coronavirus pandemic, in April Mozilla committed to sticking with its 2020 Firefox release schedule and the browser’s four-week release cadence. While the schedule remains unchanged, Mozilla shifted its roadmap to avoid shipping changes that might negatively impact government and health services websites and to address video conferencing issues.


            “While Apple does not have a public policy governing security updates for older macOS releases, their ongoing practice has been to support the most recent three releases,” Mozilla says in a support article. “The last security update applicable to macOS 10.11 was made available in July 2018. Unsupported operating systems do not receive security updates, have known exploits, and can be dangerous to use, which makes it difficult to maintain Firefox on those versions.”

          • Firefox 78: Protections dashboard, new developer features… and the end of the line for older macOS versions

            Mozilla has released Firefox 78 with a new Protections Dashboard and a bunch of updates for web developers. This is also the last supported version of Firefox for macOS El Capitan (10.11) and earlier.

            Firefox is on a “rapid release plan”, which means a new version every four to five weeks. This means that major new features should not be expected every time. That said, Firefox 78 is also an extended support release (ESR), which means users who stick with ESR get updates from this and the previous 10 releases.

            The main new user-facing feature in Firefox 78 is the Protections Dashboard, a screen which shows trackers and scripts blocked, a link to the settings, a link to Firefox Monitor for checking your email address against known data breaches, and a button for password management.

            Handy, but does the Protections Dashboard have much real value? It is doubtful; the more revealing thing is to click the shield icon to the left of the address bar on a web page, which tells you what is blocked on that site.

          • Firefox 78 Released with “Reset to Default” Option

            Mozilla Firefox 78 was released a few days ago with some new features and improvements.

            Firefox 78 added “Refresh Firefox” button to the Uninstaller, which also available in about:support page, allows to reset Firefox to its default state, while saving your essential information like bookmarks, passwords, cookies.

          • Let’s meet online: Virtual All Hands 2020

            Here I am again sharing with you the amazing experience of another All Hands.

            This time no traveling was involved, and every meeting, coffee, and chat were left online.

            Virtuality seems the focus of this 2020 and if on one side we strongly missed the possibility of being together with colleagues and contributors, on the other hand, we were grateful for the possibility of being able to connect.

            Virtual All Hands has been running for a week, from the 15th of June to the 18th, and has been full of events and meetups.


            Thank you for your participation and your enthusiasm as always, we are missing live interaction but we have the opportunity to use some great tools as well. We are happy that so many people could enjoy those opportunities and created such a nice environment during the few days of the All Hands.

            See you really soon!

          • Securing Gamepad API

            As part of Mozilla’s ongoing commitment to improve the privacy and security of the web platform, over the next few months we will be making some changes to how the Gamepad_API works.

      • Productivity Software/LibreOffice/Calligra

        • LibreOffice 7.0 RC1 Bug Hunting Session

          LibreOffice 7.0 is being developed by our worldwide community, and is due to be released in early August 2020 – see the release notes describing the new features here.

          In order to find, report and triage bugs, the LibreOffice QA team is organizing the second Bug Hunting Session for LibreOffice 7.0 on Monday July 6, 2020. Tests will be performed on the first Release Candidate version, which will be available on the pre-releases server the day of the event. Builds will be available for Linux (DEB and RPM), macOS and Windows.

        • Simulated Animation Effects Week#4

          After getting simulated animation effects somewhat a presentable state in week 3 on my experimental branch, this week my goal was to make them saveable.

          Since I wanted them to be saveable on SMIL hierarchies, like the rest of the animations, I’ve started by creating new xml tokens that’ll be used and named them “motion-simulated” and “animateSimulation”.

          Made required connections for importing/exporting these animation effects mimicking how path motion is imported/exported.

          Later created a new animation preset on Effects.xcu for testing purposes and called it arbitarily “Simulated Basic”.
          And lastly, connected stuff with animation effects panel creating a new category there for simulated animations.

        • How to Create a Pareto Diagram [80/20 Rule] in LibreOffice Calc

          In this LibreOffice tip, you’ll learn to create the famous Pareto chart in Calc.

      • CMS

        • The Month in WordPress: June 2020

          June was an exciting month for WordPress! Major changes are coming to the Gutenberg plugin, and WordCamp Europe brought the WordPress community closer together. Read on to learn more and to get all the latest updates.

      • FSF

        • GNU Projects

          • Borderlining with GIMP

            On your computer, with GIMP you can emphasize pictures in colorful ways. You can make red rectangle or ellipse to focus your readers to a point in a picture. Of course you can use blue, green, orange, and other colors too. It is easy to do once you know how. I present you here a new video again followed by short explanations, an example, and exercises. Lastly, don’t forget that this tutorial is a part of GIMP Guide for Author. Happy editing!

          • Intel Graphics Driver Fixes Include Assembly Sources To Satisfy GNU Linux-Libre Folks

            Last month you may recall that the free software purists maintaining the GNU Linux-Libre kernel dropped the Intel “iGPU Leak” security fix for Ivybridge / Haswell as they considered the compiled shaders/kernels responsible for clearing those residual contexts to be binary blobs. A resolution is now pending for upstream.

            Mitigating “iGPU Leak” for Gen7/Gen7.5 Intel graphics requires flushing the GPU between jobs by means of clearing EU/L3 residual contexts. That flushing code is compiled via the IGT user-space Intel compiler code and from the kernel side submitted to the hardware when needed. But because the GNU Linux-Libre maintainers viewed it as a “binary blobs as arrays of numbers”, they dropped the fix.

          • ath9k wifi devices may not work with linux-libre 5.7.6

            if you have a USB wifi device which uses the ath9k or ath9k_htc kernel module, you should postpone upgrading to linux-libre 5.7.6; or the device may not work when you next reboot – PCI devices do not seem to be affected by this bug

          • [Guix] Securing updates

            Software deployment tools like Guix are in a key position when it comes to securing the “software supply chain”—taking source code fresh from repositories and providing users with ready-to-use binaries. We have been paying attention to several aspects of this problem in Guix: authentication of pre-built binaries, reproducible builds, bootstrapping, and security updates.

            A couple of weeks ago, we addressed the elephant in the room: authentication of Guix code itself by guix pull, the tool that updates Guix and its package collection. This article looks at what we set out to address, how we achieved it, and how it compares to existing work in this area.

      • Programming/Development

        • The 10 Best Programming Fonts for Developers

          Looking for the best programming fonts? Well, your search ends here as this list of top 10 programming fonts will get you introduced to some of the best available fonts for programming. Just follow this post to know more!

        • Customizing my Linux terminal with tmux and Git

          I use tmux, a terminal multiplexer technology, to manage my terminal experience.

          At the bottom of the image above, you can see my green tmux bar. The [3] at the bottom indicates this terminal is the third one: each terminal runs its own tmux session. (I created a new one to make the font larger, so it’s easier to see in this screenshot; this is the only difference between this terminal and my real ones.)

          The prompt also looks funny, right? With so much information jammed into the prompt, I like to stick in a newline so that if I want to do impromptu shell programming or write a five-step pipeline, I can do it without having things spill over. The trade-off is that simple sequences of commands—touch this, copy that, move this—scroll off my screen faster.


          The first bit in the prompt is the bit I like the most: one letter that lets me know the Git status of the directory. It is G if the directory is “(not in) Git,” K if the directory is “OK” and nothing needs to be done, ! if there are files unknown to Git that must be added or ignored, C if I need to commit, U if there is no upstream, and P if an upstream exists, but I have not pushed. This scheme is not based on the current status but describes the next action I need to do. (To review Git terminology, give this article a read.)

          This terminal functionality is accomplished with an interesting Python utility. It runs python -m howsit (after I installed howsit in a dedicated virtual environment).

        • Compare the speed of grep with Python regexes

          As we were converting our Shell scripts to Python anyway I thought I could rewrite it in Python and go over the file once instead of 20 times and use the Regex engine of Python to extract the same information.

          The Python version should be faster as we all know file I/O is way more expensive than in-memory operations.

          After starting conversion it turned out to be incorrect. Our code became way slower. Let’s see a simulation of it.

        • Compare the speed of Perl and Python regexes

          The regex engine in Perl is much faster than the regex engine of Python.

          The are both slower than grep as measured when I compares Python with grep.

        • SSH Emergency Access

          Why would you want this? Only as an option of last resort. A backdoor into your servers when, for whatever reason, nothing else works.

          Why use certificates instead of public/private keys for emergency access?

          Passive revocation. Certificates expire; public keys don’t. You can mint an SSH certificate valid for 1 minute, or even 5 seconds. Once it expires, the certificate will become unusable for new connections. This is perfect for occasional emergency access.

          You’ll be able to create a certificate for any account on your hosts and send short-lived certificates to colleagues as needed.

        • Cartesi Launches ‘Descartes’ SDK Portal – Future of DApps

          Cartesi, the most recent Binance Launchpad IEO announced the launch of their Descartes SDK Documentation portal. The SDK Portal represents a leap forward for the Cartesi team in fulfilling their ambition in bridging the world of Linux open-sourced software, with the inherent security benefits of blockchain technology.

        • Cartesi launches Decartes SDK bringing blockchain dapp development to Linux

          The Cartesi Foundation today announced the launch of the Decartes software development kit and developer portal to enable developers to build distributed ledger blockchain apps using the Linux operating system.

          The SDK, which is currently an alpha test version, will allow developers to use mainstream software and libraries to develop distributed apps, or dapps, more easily while also keeping the security and capabilities of the blockchain.

        • Cartesi Launches SDK and Developer Portal Making DApp Development Feasible with Linux

          Cartesi, an innovator in the blockchain space, today announces the publishing of the alpha version of its Descartes Software Development Kit (SDK) and developer portal in line with its roadmap.

          Erick Demoura, CEO & Co-Founder of Cartesi said, “With this SDK release, we prove our continued commitment to making DApps powerful and easy to build. The SDK launch will allow developers who are already in the blockchain space to perform heavy computations and to get the convenience and the tools they were lacking before. Our vision is to make it possible, in the future, for any developer to build on top of Cartesi, to remove the boundaries and to make broad adoption of DApps a reality.”

        • Isolating PHP Web Sites

          If you have multiple PHP web sites on a server in a default configuration they will all be able to read each other’s files in a default configuration. If you have multiple PHP web sites that have stored data or passwords for databases in configuration files then there are significant problems if they aren’t all trusted. Even if the sites are all trusted (IE the same person configures them all) if there is a security problem in one site it’s ideal to prevent that being used to immediately attack all sites.


          The Apache PHP module depends on mpm_prefork so it also has the issues of not working with HTTP/2 and of causing the web server to be slow. The solution is php-fpm, a separate server for running PHP code that uses the fastcgi protocol to talk to Apache. Here’s a link to the upstream documentation for php-fpm [4]. In Debian this is in the php7.3-fpm package.

        • Template Haskell recompilation

          I was wondering: What happens if I have a Haskell module with Template Haskell that embeds some information from the environment (time, environment variables). Will such a module be reliable recompiled? And what if it gets recompiled, but the source code produced by Template Haskell is actually unchaned (e.g., because the environment variable has not changed), will all depending modules be recompiled (which would be bad)?

        • Perl/Raku

          • Perl 7: A Risk-Benefit Analysis

            At the recent Conference in the Cloud for Perl and Raku, Sawyer X (the pumpking of Perl) announced an ambitious plan for Perl 7. Since Perl 6 was renamed to Raku to better communicate its fundamental differences from the well known identity of Perl, major versions are now available again for Perl to leverage, and it is a very important step to show that the language is still developed and used. I completely agree with the motivation and ideals presented, and have thought a lot about the benefits and risks involved in such ideas long before I was aware of this project.

            I do not generally work with ancient code that uses ancient practices. I work with CPAN modules that maintain compatibility with wider or narrower ranges of Perl versions for various reasons. I work with modern code for my own and business use that already will not function on older Perls. I work with newcomers that have written code based on modern Perl tutorials, and newcomers that have written code based on ancient Perl tutorials. It’s from this perspective that I evaluate the proposed direction, the stated goal of which is to optimize for new users and active maintainers over abandoned code.

          • Breathing life into the (Emacs) cperl-mode

            If you are an Emacs user, you might know or even use cperl-mode. I am using it, more or less since my first days with Perl. Back then, newsgroups were a thing, and Ilya Zakharevich recommended it occasionally. In older times cperl-mode was shipped with Perl, today it is part of Emacs.

          • From the user perspective, Perl strings have no bugs and work well.

            I feel that in the upcoming version of Perl, the core team fixes the Unicode bug as a reason to break backward compatibility Perl 5.

            Unicode in Perl internally has some inconsistencies due to conflicts between latin-1 and UTF-8.

            this is true.

            On the other hand, from the user’s point of view, a Perl string works perfectly fine if you only accept it can’t tell whether it’s a decoded string or a bytes.

            We are solving this problem by convention.

          • Monthly Report – June

            COVID-19 seems to be still haunting us but life is getting back to normal slowly. I had the pleasure to attend the first “Conference in the Cloud”. It was 3 days event. I booked 3 days off from the work so that I can focus on the event without any interruptions. It was my first experience attending event in the cloud. I found it hard to focus on the talk in general.

            Could it be as I was at home with kids running around?

            The day one itself started on a very happy note with the announcement of “Perl 7″ by Sawyer X. The entire day one was dedicated to this very topic. brian d foy even had his first book “Preparing for Perl 7″ launched with the announcement. Thanks to the author brian d foy, I had the pleasure to read the first copy of the book. I simply loved it. The best introductory book on Perl 7 so far. Please go and check out yourself.

            I have been attending Perl conference for many years now but never had the opportunity to meet Damian Conway. The “Conference in the Cloud” made it possible to watch him live for the first time. As expected, I loved his talk, although it was recorded.

        • Python

          • Add a Column to a Pandas DataFrame Based on an If-Else Condition

            When we’re doing data analysis with Python, we might sometimes want to add a column to a pandas DataFrame based on the values in other columns of the DataFrame.

            Although this sounds straightforward, it can get a bit complicated if we try to do it using an if-else conditional. Thankfully, there’s a simple, great way to do this using numpy!

            To learn how to use it, let’s look at a specific data analysis question. We’ve got a dataset of more than 4,000 Dataquest tweets. Do tweets with attached images get more likes and retweets? Let’s do some analysis to find out!

          • Get Started With Django Part 2: Django User Management

            If you finished the first part of this series, then you may already have a lot of ideas for your own Django applications. At some point, you might decide to extend them with user accounts. In this step-by-step tutorial, you’ll learn how to work with Django user management and add it to your program.

          • Django bugfix releases issued: 3.0.8 and 2.2.14

            Today we’ve issued 3.0.8 and 2.2.14 bugfix releases.

            The release package and checksums are available from our downloads page, as well as from the Python Package Index.

          • Python 101 – Learning About Tuples (Video)

            If you prefer to read rather than watch, then you should check out Python 101 – Learning About Tuples

          • Tryton News: Newsletter July 2020

            A major improvement has landed which reduces memory usage on the server by between 30% and 40% and increases its speed by around 15%.

          • PSF GSoC students blogs: Weekly Check-In #5
          • Python Software Foundation: Announcing the PSF Project Funding Working Group

            For the past 3 years, the PSF has been working on grant funded projects to improve our internal systems and platforms. This work has been done with the Packaging Working Group, and focused on our packaging ecosystem of PyPI and pip. We have been able to show that applying directed funding to open source projects has the ability to dramatically increase the speed of development, and move our community forward in a much more sustained way than relying solely on volunteer effort.


            The PSF has created the Project Funding Working Group to help our community seek similar funding for their own projects. We hope to expand the amount of money going into the Python community as a whole, by providing resources and advice to projects who are interested in seeking funding from external sources.

            Our charter starts with our intended purpose:

            This Working Group researches, and advises Python community volunteers on applying for external grants and similar funding to advance the mission of the PSF, which includes, but is not limited to, things such as advancing the Python core, Python-related infrastructure, key Python projects, and Python education and awareness.
            You can read the entire charter for more information about the vision for the group that we intend to build over the medium and long term.

        • Shell/Bash/Zsh/Ksh

          • More stupid Bash tricks: Variables, find, file descriptors, and remote operations

            This blog post is the second of two covering some practical tips and tricks to get the most out of the Bash shell. In part one, I covered history, last argument, working with files and directories, reading files, and Bash functions. In this segment, I cover shell variables, find, file descriptors, and remote operations.

  • Leftovers

    • Desolation Center
    • Photographers Grapple With ‘Informed Consent’ in Uprising

      The bill of rights is a lengthy, multifaceted, non–legally binding document that seeks to address gender and race bias within the image-taking industry, setting up policy guidelines to address issues of pay, safety, accountability and documenting abuse in the world of lens-based media workers (photographers, videographers, visual editors, etc.).

    • Education

      • Prioritizing Children’s Wellness Over Cops: The Movement To End Policing In Schools

        In the wake of protests that swept the United States after Minneapolis police murdered George Floyd, teachers, unions, and activist groups across the United States have renewed pushes to remove police from school districts.

        Several school boards voted or are in the process of voting on resolutions that would defund school police forces

      • Online Learning Isn’t Even Remotely Equal

        Ivanka Brutus, a fifth-grade student in a Black and low-income county in Miami, Fla., struggled to complete her coursework when school moved online. Her Internet connection is extremely spotty—the beginning of Tropical Storm Arthur brought flood levels to the county that haven’t been seen in 20 years. And as hurricane season continues, it’s only expected to get worse. “I have experienced many tough things while learning online,” Brutus told The Nation. “I still don’t have access to my own computer, and our power can cut off at any time.”

    • Health/Nutrition

      • ‘The People Have Spoken’: Thwarting GOP Push for Cuts, Oklahoma Voters Approve Medicaid Expansion

        “Voters are tired of politicians ignoring the problem or worse, trying to take their healthcare away, and they’re rejecting that approach in even the deepest of red states.”

      • A Small Victory for Reproductive Rights

        “WE WON,” read the heading on the e-mail from Women with a Vision, a queer Black women’s group based in Louisiana. “We Won!” cheered the New Orleans Abortion Fund. All day long, triumphant messages flitted across my screen—from the ACLU, the Center for Reproductive Rights, Vote ProChoice, Vote Mama, and many more. “We Are Shook,” was the headline from Rewire, the online reproductive justice news service. “SCOTUS just protected abortion access.”

      • An Employee at a Private Sports Club Owned by This Billionaire Governor Tested Positive for Coronavirus

        After at least three complaints alleging lax reopening practices at West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice’s luxury resort hotel, a kitchen employee has tested positive for the coronavirus at a residential and sports club affiliated with The Greenbrier.

        Local Health Department officials directed a 14-day quarantine for potentially exposed employees at The Lodge, a restaurant at the Greenbrier Sporting Club, and the venue will remain closed until July 10. Festivities planned at the club for July 4 will go on, but with food from other facilities.

      • Internal Messages Reveal Crisis at Houston Hospitals as Coronavirus Cases Surge

        At Lyndon B. Johnson Hospital on Sunday, the medical staff ran out of both space for new coronavirus patients and a key drug needed to treat them. With no open beds at the public hospital, a dozen COVID-19 patients who were in need of intensive care were stuck in the emergency room, awaiting transfers to other Houston area hospitals, according to a note sent to the staff and shared with reporters.

        A day later, the top physician executive at the Houston Methodist hospital system wrote to staff members warning that its coronavirus caseload was surging: “It has become necessary to consider delaying more surgical services to create further capacity for COVID-19 patients,” Dr. Robert Phillips said in the note, an abrupt turn from three days earlier, when the hospital system sent a note to thousands of patients, inviting them to keep their surgical appointments.

      • Managed democracy meets managed epidemiology How Russia rewrote its coronavirus outbreak to clear a path to resetting Putin’s presidential term clock

        More than a month ago, on May 26, Vladimir Putin announced that Russia had overcome its first wave of coronavirus infections. That was more than four weeks ahead of the start of nationwide voting on constitutional amendments and the “zeroing out” of the president’s own term clock (potentially allowing him to serve in office until 2036). In the time remaining before the plebiscite, regions across the country reported uniform declines in the number of new COVID-19 cases (or at least stabilized infection rates), while simultaneously lifting containment measures. Despite considerable evidence from overcrowded hospitals, the country seems to have forgotten the pandemic. Meduza special correspondent Liliya Yapparova spoke to doctors, patients, and scholars in Russia’s Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug, Sverdlovsk region, and St. Petersburg (which currently lead the nation in new cases) and found out how the disease is still spreading and where it would be the worst, if statistics were reported honestly. 

      • Workers Filed More Than 4,100 Complaints About Protective Gear. Some Still Died.

        COVID-19 cases were climbing at Michigan’s McLaren Flint hospital. So Roger Liddell, 64, who procured supplies for the hospital, asked for an N95 respirator for his own protection, since his work brought him into the same room as COVID-positive patients.

      • ‘The Decision to Not Combat the Coronavirus Was a Choice’
      • She Needed Lifesaving Medication, but the Only Hospital in Town Did Not Have It

        Mabel Garcia had just said good morning to her grandson, who slept overnight in a chair near her hospital bed. Then suddenly, she stopped talking.

        The right side of her face sank and her eyes fluttered as nurses at Memorial Hospital of Texas County in Guymon, Oklahoma, surrounded her bed. Her mouth gaped open.

      • Dr. Cammy Benton: An antivaxxer plays the “both sides” card on masks for COVID-19

        If there’s one thing about the COVID-19 pandemic that’s been depressing to behold (other than the mass death, the lockdowns, and the utter failure of US national leadership to coordinate a policy to slow the spread of the disease), it’s the way that the pandemic has revealed just how polarized public health policy has become. (Also, it depresses me how prone to pseudoscience physicians like Dr. Cammy Benton, whom we will meet shortly, are.) The specific example I have in mind is the increasingly angry—and sometimes even violent—resistance to the requirement to do something as benign as wearing a mask in public in order to slow the spread of coronavirus. I realize that, in a way, this is not new. There was, for example, an actual “Anti-Mask League” formed in 1919 during the great influenza pandemic; so one could view history as repeating itself. However, thanks to social media and people of a certain political persuasion having decided that wearing a mask is more about “control” than public health and that the refusal to wear one brands them as a “free-thinking rebel,” resistance to masks among a small but unfortunately not insignificant minority of Americans has reached truly irrational and potentially violent levels. You don’t have to go too far to see videos of people angrily ranting and refusing to wear a mask, badgering and threatening underpaid workers at grocery stores and restaurants who try to enforce masking policies by politely asking them just to wear a mask.

      • Public Smoking Ban Extended to Cover E-Cigarettes

        From tomorrow, Dutch supermarkets will also no longer be allowed to display any tobacco products including cigarettes, rolling tobacco, cigars and e-cigarettes. This same ban will apply to other stores from January 1.

      • Ed Yong on the “Disgraceful” U.S. Pandemic Response & How Medicare for All Could Have Saved Lives

        As the United States experiences the world’s worst outbreak of COVID-19, we speak with Ed Yong, science writer for The Atlantic, who warned of the country’s unpreparedness for a viral outbreak in 2018. Now he says “it’s truly shocking and disgraceful” how badly the pandemic has been handled in the United States, and blames a lack of federal leadership for most of the damage. “A country with the resources that we have should not be in this state,” he argues, and adds that Medicare for All could have saved lives.

      • ‘A mask is not a symbol’: These restaurants had seen too many disrespectful customers. They closed rather than serve them.

        “A mask is not a symbol,” he said. “It’s just a device that is going to help protect your community and your neighbors from the spread of a virus.”

      • Severe Neurological Ailments Reported in COVID-19 Patients

        lthough respiratory distress is the predominant complication of COVID-19, there are also rare, yet serious, neurological ailments that may arise. A survey of UK hospitals found that some patients also experience strokes, dementia-like symptoms, and delirium. The findings were published on June 25 in The Lancet Psychiatry.

      • Imagining a Vegan Superman

        My wife and I recently stared rewatching ‘Smallville,’ the WB show about Superman’s young adulthood. She was a fan of the series when it was on the air and introduced it to me a few years ago. ‘Smallville’ is far from prestige television, but I kind of love it. In these dark times, the show is an optimistic, wholesome distraction.

      • ‘Beyond Outrageous,’ Says Sanders, That Trump Officials Ignored Labor Safety Complaints as Health Workers Died From Covid-19

        Senator’s condemnation came in response to an investigation into the handling of over 4,100 OSHA complaints from frontline workers.

      • New Flu Virus Reported in China Highlights Risk of Animal-Borne Pandemic Originating in Factory Farms

        “We are constantly at risk of new emergence of zoonotic pathogens and that farmed animals, with which humans have greater contact than with wildlife, may act as the source for important pandemic viruses.”

      • ‘Brutal Pandemic Reality Check’: Top CDC Official Gives Grim Assessment on Coronavirus Containment

        CDC principal deputy director Dr. Anne Schuchat said we’re “not even beginning to be over this.”

      • In the news: India’s northeast faces ‘twin disasters’

        Severe flooding in the northeast Indian state of Assam has submerged cropland and villages, pushing at least 27,000 people into relief camps.

        Days of heavy rainfall over the past week caused riverbanks to burst. State authorities say the floods have affected at least 1.3 million people in 25 of Assam’s 33 districts, with more rain predicted in the coming days.

        The coronavirus pandemic has exacerbated the disaster’s impacts on a population that was already struggling with lost jobs and livelihoods amid COVID-19 lockdowns.

      • Readers react | #BlackLivesMatter and challenging Western power structures in aid

        The globalisation of vulnerability – made clear by the coronavirus pandemic and a global anti-racism movement – is putting into question traditional conceptions of humanitarian aid.

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Pseudo-Open Source

          • Privatisation/Privateering

            • Linux Foundation and Linux Plumbers Conference

              • Networking and BPF Summit CfP Now Open

                We are pleased to announce that the Call for Proposals for the Networking and BPF Summit at Linux Plumbers Conference 2020 is now open.

              • Linux Plumbers Conference: Announcing Town Hall #2: The Kernel Weather Report

                Thank you to everyone who attended the Linux Plumbers town hall on June 25th. It was successful thanks to your participation. We’re pleased to announce another town hall on July 16th at 8am PST / 11am EST / 3pm GMT. This town hall will feature Jon Corbet of LWN giving “The Kernel Weather Report”. This talk will focus on the current state of the kernel community and what is to come.

              • FinOps Will Drive Efficiency for DevOps

                DevOps in the cloud has broken traditional procurement, which is now outsourced to engineers. Engineers spend company money at will and make financial decisions on cloud providers like AWS, GCP and Azure at rapid speed with little time to consider cost efficiency. Finance teams struggle to understand what is being spent on the cloud. Leadership doesn’t have enough input into how much will be spent or ability to influence priorities. Enter the concept of FinOps, and the need for a community of practitioners to advance best practices beyond vendor tooling, whose aim is to increase the business value of cloud by bringing together technology, business and finance professionals with a new set of processes.

                That’s why we’re so excited to announce our intent to host the FinOps Foundation with the Linux Foundation to advance the discipline of Cloud Financial Management through best practices, education and standards. The FinOps Foundation focuses on codifying and promoting cloud financial management best practices and standards to help the community. It currently includes 1,500 individual members representing more than 500 companies and $1B in revenue. They include Atlassian, Autodesk, Bill.com, HERE Technologies, Just Eat, Nationwide, Neustar, Nike, and Spotify among founding charter members.

              • Scality Affirms Commitment to Open Source as Founding Member of New Linux Foundation

                Scality announced its founder status and membership of SODA Foundation, an expanded open source community under the Linux Foundation umbrella. As a founding member, Scality joins forces with Fujitsu, IBM, Sony and others to accelerate innovation in meeting the challenges of data management across multiple clouds, edge and core environments for end users.

              • New Training Course Aims to Make it Easy to Get Started with EdgeX Foundry

                LFD213, was developed in conjunction with LF Edge, an umbrella organization under The Linux Foundation that aims to establish an open, interoperable framework for edge computing independent of hardware, silicon, cloud, or operating system. The course is designed for IoT and/or edge software engineers, system administrators, and operation technology technicians that want to assemble an edge solution.

        • Security

          • Security updates for Wednesday

            Security updates have been issued by Arch Linux (bind, chromium, freerdp, imagemagick, sqlite, and tomcat8), Debian (coturn, imagemagick, jackson-databind, libmatio, mutt, nss, and wordpress), Fedora (libEMF, lynis, and php-PHPMailer), Red Hat (httpd24-nghttp2), and SUSE (ntp, openconnect, squid, and transfig).

          • Microsoft releases emergency security update to fix two bugs in Windows codecs
          • John the Ripper explained: An essential password cracker for your hacker toolkit

            The tool comes in both GNU-licensed and proprietary (Pro) versions. An enhanced “jumbo” community release has also been made available on the open-source GitHub repo. The Pro version, designed for use by professional pen testers, has additional features such as bigger, multilingual wordlists, performance optimizations and 64-bit architecture support.

            Some of the key features of the tool include offering multiple modes to speed up password cracking, automatically detecting the hashing algorithm used by the encrypted passwords, and the ease of running and configuring the tool making it a password cracking tool of choice for novices and professionals alike.

          • Debian LTS and ELTS – June 2020

            Here is my transparent report for my work on the Debian Long Term Support (LTS) and Debian Extended Long Term Support (ELTS), which extend the security support for past Debian releases, as a paid contributor.

            In June, the monthly sponsored hours were split evenly among contributors depending on their max availability – I was assigned 30h for LTS (out of 30 max; all done) and 5.25h for ELTS (out of 20 max; all done).

            While LTS is part of the Debian project, fellow contributors sometimes surprise me: suggestion to vote for sponsors-funded projects with concorcet was only met with overhead concerns, and there were requests for executive / business owner decisions (we’re currently heading towards consultative vote); I heard concerns about discussing non-technical issues publicly (IRC team meetings are public though); the private mail infrastructure was moved from self-hosting straight to Google; when some got an issue with Debian Social for our first video conference, there were immediate suggestions to move to Zoom…
            Well, we do need some people to make those LTS firmware updates in non-free

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • Brazil’s Proposed ‘Fake News’ Law Says Internet Users Are Guilty Until Proven Innocent, Demands Constant Logging From ISPs

              Brazil’s legislature is set to vote on its proposed “fake news” law. This law would criminalize speech the government doesn’t like, under the handy theory that anything it doesn’t like must be “fake.” There was some mobilization on this not-even-legal-yet theory back in 2018, ahead of an election, when the Federal Police announced it would be keeping an eye on the internet during the election process. There are plenty of ways to combat misinformation. Giving this job to people with guns is the worst solution.

            • Senate Waters Down EARN IT At The Last Minute; Gives Civil Liberties Groups No Time To Point Out The Many Remaining Problems

              As expected, the EARN IT Act is set to be marked up this week, and today (a day before the markup) Senators Graham and Blumenthal announced a “manager’s amendment” that basically rewrites the entire bill. It has some resemblance to the original bill, in that this bill will also create a giant “national commission on online child sexual exploitation prevention” to “develop recommended best practices” that various websites can use to “prevent, reduce, and respond to the online sexual exploitation of children,” but then has removed the whole “earn it” part of the “EARN IT” Act in that there seems to be no legal consequences for any site not following these “best practices” (yet). In the original bill, not following the best practices would lose sites their Section 230 protections. Now… not following them is just… not following them. The Commission just gets to shout into the wind.

            • Apple, Facebook, Amazon, Google CEOs to Testify in Congress

              Representative David Cicilline, a Rhode Island Democrat who leads the probe as chairman of the antitrust subcommittee, has said he wants appearances by top tech company executives before wrapping up the probe and recommending changes to antitrust law.

              Facebook and Amazon spokespeople declined to comment. A Google spokesman deferred to the committee. Apple did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

            • Facebook Shared User Data With Developers Longer Than Promised

              The company previously said that third-party app developers would be blocked from accessing user data if a person didn’t interact with the developer’s app for 90 days. At that point, the developer would be required to ask users for permission to re-access their data, including information like email addresses, birthdays and hometowns.

              That failed to happen in some instances, Facebook said Wednesday in a blog post. If a user of a third party app was also connected to a Facebook friend through that app, developers are allowed to pull data from both users at once. But a flaw in the company’s system meant developers who pulled data from one active user could also see data from that user’s friend, even if the friend had not opened the app in more than 90 days, a spokesperson said. The issue applies to apps from some 5,000 developers, but the company didn’t disclose how many users might be affected.

            • Peter Thiel-Backed Surveillance Startup Anduril Is Valued at $1.9 Billion

              The business is controversial. Anduril builds surveillance towers and drones, along with software to automatically monitor areas like international borders and the perimeter of military bases. “We founded Anduril because we believe there is value in Silicon Valley technology companies partnering with the Department of Defense,” Brian Schimpf, the chief executive officer of Anduril, said in a statement Wednesday.

              But it’s Anduril’s work with other agencies that draws the greatest criticism. The company’s first government contracts were with U.S. Customs and Border Protection, where it put up towers along the U.S.-Mexican border. Mark Morgan, the acting commissioner of the agency, told Congress in February that immigration authorities planned to have 200 autonomous surveillance towers in place this year.

            • With Facebook hemorrhaging advertisers, CEO agrees to meet with boycott organizers

              In addition to controversies surrounding the company allowing President Donald Trump to use its platform to disseminate hate speech — particularly leaving up a post about the George Floyd protests saying “when the looting start, the shooting starts” — the company has also been criticized for allowing hate speech that contributed to a 2017 genocide against Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar and for the fact that a terrorist used the site to livestream mosque shootings in New Zealand last year. The company has also done little if anything to crack down on misinformation about the George Floyd protests, and has enlisted fringe right-wing news site The Daily Caller as a fact-checking partner; it also lists the right-wing nationalist site Breitbart News as a “trusted” source.

            • Zuckerberg Agrees to Meet With Groups Behind Advertising Boycott

              Facebook reached out to the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, the Anti-Defamation League and Color of Change last week to arrange a meeting with Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg and Chief Product Officer Chris Cox, a company spokesman said. The civil rights groups said they wanted Zuckerberg to be at the meeting, the spokesman added.

            • Privacy and Data Protection in Chinese Civil Code: First Clarification of Personal Data Protection from the Perspective of Civil Law in China

              On 28 May 2020, the first Chinese Civil Code (CCC) was adopted. It will come into effect on 1 January 2021.

              Chapter 6 (Privacy and Protection of Personal Information) of Part 4 (Personality Rights) of the CCC emphasises ‘privacy and personal data’ in particular and provides several principles and data rights for personal data collection and processing.

              Combined with relevant legislation, regulations and standards, such as the cybersecurity law, the consumer protection law, the ninth amendment to the criminal law and the personal information standard, the protection of privacy rights and personal information is further strengthened in China. This marks overall improvement of the legal status of personal data protection in this country.

    • Defence/Aggression

      • The Police and the Pentagon Are Bringing Our Wars Home

        We need to end systemic racism and the militarism that makes it even deadlier—from Kabul to Atlanta and Baghdad to Minneapolis.

      • COVID-19 Means Good Times for the Pentagon

        In response to the Covid-19 pandemic, Washington has initiated its largest spending binge in history. In the process, you might assume that the unparalleled spread of the disease would have led to a little rethinking when it came to all the trillions of dollars Congress has given the Pentagon in these years that have in no way made us safer from, or prepared us better to respond to, this predictable threat to American national security. As it happens, though, even if the rest of us remain in danger from the coronavirus, Congress has done a remarkably good job of vaccinating the Department of Defense and the weapons makers that rely on it financially.

      • My Grandmother, Icon of Palestinian Resilience

        My grandmother passed away on Tuesday, June 16. She was 103 years old. One of my poems, “This Is Why We Dance,” begins with “Home, in my memory, is a green, worn-out couch / And my grandmother in every poem.”

      • When US Backed A Mass Murder Program In Indonesia: Interview With Vincent Bevins On ‘The Jakarta Method’

        Rania Khalek and Kevin Gosztola welcome Vincent Bevins, the author of The Jakarta Method: Washington’s Anticommunist Crusade and the Mass Murder Program That Shaped Our World, to discuss his book.

        He was the Brazil correspondent for the Los Angeles Times and the southeast Asia correspondent for the Washington Post.

      • The Return of the Anti-Antiwar Left

        In her recently published memoir, Circle in the Darkness, the author and journalist Diana Johnstone recalls that only “a few decades ago, “the Left” was considered the center of opposition to imperialism, and champion of the right of peoples to self-determination.”

      • De-Militarizing the United States

        More than a half-century ago, exactly one year before he was assassinated, Martin Luther King Jr. brilliantly identified the keys to the American political, economic, and social crisis that has worsened over the years.  At the Riverside Church in New York City, King linked the militarism of the Vietnam War; the racism of American society; and the inequality and materialism of the American economy to demand a movement toward social justice that we seek today.  The central civil rights leaders of the time, including Ralph Bunch, asked King to radically alter the speech and to dissociate racism from the Vietnam War.  The central newspapers of the time, including the New York Times and the Washington Post, maligned the speech, terming it an “oversimplification” that would hurt both the civil rights movement and the anti-war movement. Fifty-three years later, we are still trying to solve the ills of racism, militarism, and materialism that beg for social justice.

      • Sanders Files Amendments to Force Pentagon to Pass Clean Audit, Require Mass Production of Free Masks for All

        “National security,” said Sen. Bernie Sanders, “means doing everything we can to improve the lives of our people, many of whom have been abandoned by our government decade after decade.”

      • Ro Khanna and Barbara Lee Could Defy “the Madness of Militarism” as Co-Chairs of the Democratic Convention’s Biggest Delegation

        Khanna and Lee have a tremendous—indeed, historic—opportunity.

      • Uncovering John Bolton’s ‘distorted’ tales in ‘The Room Where It Happened’
      • Russia holds key to UN Syria aid operation

        UN aid to Syria’s rebel-held northwest will come to a halt this month if Russia does not agree to a deal in the Security Council, potentially putting healthcare, food, and rudimentary shelter for millions of people in jeopardy.

        After more than nine years of war, the government of President Bashar al-Assad, backed by Russia and Iran, controls most of Syria, except Idlib province and surrounding parts of the northwest, and the mostly Kurdish-controlled northeast.

        Damascus has a history of blocking aid within Syria to the northwest and other parts of the country it says are controlled by “terrorists.” The UN estimates that some four million people live in the Idlib province and other opposition-held parts of northwestern Syria. Seventy percent of them are in need of some sort of assistance, including many displaced people who were forced to flee a recent government offensive and are now facing rising rates of hunger.

    • Environment

      • Climate change caused havoc 2000 years ago

        An Alaskan volcano once spurred climate change, darkening Mediterranean skies, launching a famine and possibly changing history.

      • The Climate Emergency Won’t Wait for the Press to Play Catch-up Again

        This story is being co-published by The Guardian, The Nation, and Columbia Journalism Review as part of Covering Climate Now, a global collaboration of more than 400 news outlets committed to transforming news coverage of the defining story of our time.

      • The young people fighting the worst smog in Europe

        “I started looking online for other solutions and I found you can buy sensor equipment for about €60,” he says. Cavkovski and colleagues ordered around 50 sensors and distributed them to colleagues. The devices need to be placed outside, such as on a balcony, fixed to a wall and away from direct sunlight, rain and other sources of contamination, such as chimneys. They also can’t be higher than four storeys up if they’re to get an accurate indication of ground-level pollution.

        Cavkovski created an app, PulseEco, collating all the readings, and made the data open source so that it shows on AirCare too. Cavkovski also published guidelines for how people can order and construct sensors themselves and how other cities can join the network.

        However, the sensors are controversial because they don’t meet the European Air Quality Index’s (EAQI) measurement standards and give lower quality data. As a result, politicians in the country have spoken out against their use. “I do appreciate what civil society’s doing, because if they’re not making noise no one will be aware,” says Olivera Kujundzic, who is head of air quality at Montenegro’s environment agency and co-author of several studies for the EU and UN Development Programme into Macedonia’s air pollution. But she worries that DIY solutions may damage public trust in science and expertise. “We need to adhere to standards.”

      • House Democrats Have a Climate Plan, And It’s Pretty Damn Good

        Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), joined by members of the Select Committee on the Climate Crisis, delivers remarks during a news conference outside the U.S. Capitol on June 30, 2020 in Washington, DC. Pelosi joined her colleagues to unveil the Climate Crisis action plan, which calls for government mandates, tax incentives and new infrastructure to bring the U.S. economy’s greenhouse gas emissions to zero by 2050.

      • NOAA’s Emergency Response Imagery

        As soon as weather permits following major natural disasters, the National Geodetic Survey begins aerial survey missions to assess damages to affected areas. Typical weather-related events include hurricanes, tornadoes, and floods. NGS responds to other events, such as oil spills, as well. Directly georeferenced-imagery data are collected, rapidly processed, and made available via open-source Geographic Information Systems (GIS). These data and images provide emergency and coastal managers with information needed to develop recovery strategies, facilitate search and rescue efforts, identify hazards to navigation and HAZMAT spills, locate errant vessels, and provide documentation necessary for damage assessment through the comparison of before-and-after imagery. Images are also available to view and download by the general public as a tool to assess impacts to their homes and community.

      • Energy

        • In the Shadow of Shuttered Philadelphia Refinery, Neighbors Recall Those Lost to Decades of Pollution

          On Monday, June 22, as Black Lives Matter protests continued nationwide, members of Philly Thrive, a local grassroots group, arrived outside the perimeter of the refinery complex in South Philadelphia. They posted “in memorium” placards bearing the names of deceased Philadelphians along the facility’s chainlink borders, handwritten fenceline memorials for departed members of the refinery’s fenceline community. Speakers that day recalled less the fiery explosion that tore through the plant one year earlier and more the long-term harms caused by decades of fossil fuel production in the majority Black neighborhood.

        • VanMoof’s e-bike ad banned in France for creating a ‘climate of anxiety’

          The ad, which premiered on June 6th and is intended for both TV and the web, features scenes of traffic jams, vehicle crashes, and tailpipe pollution reflected on the surface of a sports car that eventually begins to melt, giving way to VanMoof’s new S3 e-bike. “The alternative to gridlocked freeways and overflowing subways,” the text reads. “Time to ride the future.”

        • Bike maker cries foul as anti-car ad refused in France

          It asked the company to modify the ad, but Djalo said: “We don’t want to distort our video and water it down just to make the French auto industry happy.”

        • After a decade of losses for US shale oil, 2020 may be a final reckoning

          But the industry failed to turn its vast new reservoirs of American oil and gas into profits. Chesapeake only saw prices fall as the industry grew. Its bankruptcy filings listed assets of $16.2 billion, and liabilities of $11.8 billion.

          The winnowing of weaker players is intensifying. After averaging more than 30 bankruptcies per year since 2015, the number of US shale defaults is likely to roughly double in 2020, reports Deloitte. Oil demand has cratered with no signs of a quick return. Telecommuting and reduced international trade and travel have slashed millions of barrels from global consumption. Electric cars and renewable energy are offering a credible, competitive alternative to fossil fuels.

          The remaining shale oil companies are hoarding cash to stay alive. With production expected to fall from 13 million of barrels per day to 10 million by year’s end, investment in new capacity has fallen by half.

        • Taiwan’s Pingtung County begins installing 99MW solar power station

          A solar power company on June 23 began installing a 99MW photovoltaic (PV) solar power station in Jiadong Township, an area of Pingtung County severely affected by subsidence, after two years of negotiations with more than 1,000 landowners.

          Speaking at the groundbreaking ceremony, Ysolar Co. (力暘能源公司) President Huang Zhi-wen (黃志文) said that the biggest challenge facing the development of solar energy is obtaining approval from landowners, CNA reported. He added that the company offered 20-year leases and NT$400,000 (US$13,333) for every 0.96992 hectare of land.

          After two years of effort, more than 242.5 hectares of land have been leased to the solar energy company, the report said.

      • Wildlife/Nature

    • Finance

      • Chomsky: We Must Not Let Masters of Capital Define the Post-COVID World

        The global outbreak of COVID-19 has many thinking that a new economic and political order is inevitably under way. But is that so? In the U.S., the moneyed class, which has thrived under Donald Trump, won’t go down without pulling all stops to make sure that popular pressures for radical reforms will be blocked, says world-renowned public intellectual Noam Chomsky. Chomsky also reminds us that overt racism has intensified under Trump, and that police violence is a symptom of the underlying white supremacy that plagues U.S. society. Meanwhile, Trump’s anti-environmental policies and his trashing of arms control treaties are bringing the world ever closer to an environmental and nuclear holocaust.

      • Hey Congress, Move the Money

        The past month’s activism has changed a great deal. One thing it’s helped with is brushing aside the tired old argument over whether government should be big or small. In its place we have the much more useful argument over whether government should prioritize force and punishment, or focus on services and assistance.

      • Republicans and Democrats Agree: GM Should Pay Back the Taxpayers of Ohio

        In a rare display of bipartisanship in an era of political division, Republicans and Democrats across Ohio are pressuring General Motors to repay millions of dollars in public subsidies after the company reneged on a promise to keep its sprawling Lordstown plant open.

        Among the latest to join the chorus is Ohio Attorney General David Yost, a Republican, who in an unusual move Tuesday filed a blistering 63-page brief before state tax regulators demanding they seek full restitution of more than $60 million in tax credits the automaker received between 2009 and 2016.

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • Four arrested during rally opposing constitutional amendments in St. Petersburg

        At least four people were arrested in St. Petersburg during a “Stop the Amendments” rally against changes to the Russian constitution, reports OVD-Info. More than 100 people reportedly attended the protest.

      • Russia’s Election Commission modifies website to disable automatic downloads of plebiscite results

        The website where Russia’s Central Election Commission publishes official data on elections and referendums, vybory.izbircom.ru, has disabled automatic downloads of the constitutional plebiscite results. The site now includes a captcha test, to determine whether or not the user is a human, reports Grigory Melkonyants, the co-chair of the voter protection movement “Golos.”

      • Photo: Moscow’s protest against resetting Putin’s presidential term clock
      • ‘Meduza’ stands with ‘Mediazona’ correspondent David Frenkel, who was injured by St. Petersburg police while reporting on Russia’s constitutional plebiscite

        David Frenkel, a correspondent for the outlet Mediazona (which covers Russia’s justice system), visited a polling station in St. Petersburg on June 30, in order to confirm the fact that the precinct had tried to expel a voting member of the electoral commission. When the site commissioner asked the police to remove Frenkel for supposedly “impeding” the commission’s work, two officers shoved him to the ground and pinned him against a doorway, breaking his arm. Thankfully, there is video footage of the event clearly showing that Frenkel doing nothing to provoke the officers. He was later hospitalized and treated in a four-hour operation on his arm.

      • Here’s how Russia’s constitutional plebiscite achieved 55 percent turnout before the final day of voting

        July 1 marks the final day of voting in Russia’s nationwide plebiscite on constitutional amendments, which includes reforms that could keep Vladimir Putin in the presidency until 2036. After the first six days of early voting, turnout had already exceeded the Kremlin’s reported goal of 55 percent. To achieve this benchmark, teachers and doctors, along with subway and construction workers, and the employees of major enterprises close to the state, were forced to cast their ballots during the early voting period. Meduza shares a roundup of a number of these cases.

      • UK’s Labour Leader Sacks the Most Left-Wing Member of His Shadow Cabinet

        As a Labour party member, it is unavoidable that I should have an opinion on the party leader Keir Starmer’s sacking of Rebecca Long-Bailey.

      • Trolling Trump, the Lincoln Project Also Peddles Militarism

        The Lincoln Project is producing the strangest and most memorable ads in the 2020 election cycle because it has a unique goal: to troll the president. Founded by Republicans who hate the Trumpian takeover of their party, the super PAC has so far been focused on creating ads that don’t really persuade voters, but do rile up Trump and entertain journalists and political insiders. The ads air in Washington, D.C., which is not a locale where you can reach swing voters who could shift the Electoral College. But Washington is the place to run ads if you want to get Trump to see them and get steaming mad.

      • Booker’s Loss Was Devastating. But We Can’t Lose Sight of Defeating McConnell

        Only by ousting obstructionists like McConnell and freeing the Senate from Republican control can a progressive vision be achieved.

      • Sunrise Movement Says Wins by Corporate Democrats Like McGrath and Hickenlooper Must Be ‘Moment of Reckoning’ for Progressives

        “These were not races that progressives could afford to sit out, but too many organizations did.”

      • “Into the World of Bad Spirits”: Slavery and Plantation Culture

        Between 1500 and 1880 ten to eleven million Africans were moved by force and terror into “new worlds.” Sir Philip Sherlock and Hazel Bennett write of the immensity of the “physical suffering, anguish of spirit and unbearable cruelty” of their lot “from the time of … capture” (The Story of the Jamaican People [1997, p. 122]). Chained together in the “floating tombs,” Africans were bound for a strange land and doomed to serve a strange owner of another race for life. Gordon Lewis, author of the monumental Main Currents in Caribbean Thought: the historical evolution of Caribbean society in its ideological aspects, 1492-1900 [1983, p. 5], comments: “Caribbean society thus became a society of masters and slaves. It constituted open and systematic exploitation of chattel labour, therefore, based, in the final resort on the psychology of terror.”

      • Why Do People Want to See Donald Trump’s Tax Returns?

        The Supreme Court is expected to rule on two cases regarding access to President Donald Trump’s tax filings soon. At the heart of the cases: Can House committees and a New York grand jury subpoena financial institutions for Trump’s personal and business tax filings?

        If the Supreme Court rules against Trump, it opens the possibility that the public could eventually see his personal tax return and business records, though experts say it would be unlikely to happen quickly. Here’s why people want to see Trump’s tax returns and what they may reveal about the president.

      • Moscow’s online voting system has some major vulnerabilities, allowing votes to be decrypted before the official count

        Russia’s nationwide vote on constitutional amendments continued the country’s experiment with online voting, but only in the Moscow and Nizhny Novgorod regions. This time around, developers changed the voting system so that individual voters are guaranteed the ability to decrypt their own votes. On the one hand, this makes it easier to force people to vote. On the other hand, it could allow for a partial monitoring of the integrity of the vote count.

      • With India’s TikTok Ban, the World’s Digital Walls Grow Higher

        India’s decision strikes at a number of China’s leading technology companies, including Alibaba, Tencent and Baidu. But perhaps none will be more affected than TikTok and its Beijing-based parent, ByteDance, which has built a huge audience in India as part of an aggressive and well-funded expansion around the world. TikTok has been installed more than 610 million times in India, according to estimates by the data firm Sensor Tower. In the United States, the app has been installed 165 million times.

        China itself began putting up walls within the global [I]nternet years ago. By blocking Silicon Valley giants like Google and Facebook, Beijing created a controlled environment in which homegrown upstarts could flourish, and where the Communist Party could keep a tight grip on online conversation.

      • Hong Kong: UK makes citizenship offer to residents

        About 350,000 UK passport holders, and 2.6 million others eligible, will be able to come to the UK for five years.

        And after a further year, they will be able to apply for citizenship.

      • Advertisers Are Fleeing Facebook Over Its Failure to Moderate Hate Speech

        In recent weeks, over 400 companies have pulled advertising from the social media giant. Coca-Cola, Adidas/Reebok, and Hershey’s are among the major brands to suspend Facebook advertising through the month of July, while others have pledged suspensions through the end of the year, or indefinitely. “When we re-engage will depend on Facebook’s response,” Levi Strauss CMO Jen Sey wrote in a blog post announcing the company’s decision to cease advertising. The decision, she wrote, was made out of “concern about Facebook’s failure to stop the spread of misinformation and hate speech on its platform.”

      • Most of Facebook’s top 100 advertisers have not joined the boycott: analysis

        Most of Facebook’s top 100 advertisers have not joined the boycott against the social media website and its sibling website Instagram, according to a CNN Business analysis released Wednesday.

        Hundreds of companies have pledged to stop advertising on Facebook and Instagram as part of a monthlong boycott to protest how the social media company has handled hate speech and misinformation.

        But CNN Business’s analysis based on data from market research firm Pathmatics found that most of Facebook’s top 100 advertisers, including Walmart, American Express and Home Depot, have not joined the boycott set to begin Wednesday.

      • Hundreds of brands are pulling ads from Facebook. Its largest advertisers aren’t among them.

        The data suggest the ongoing boycott may have a limited impact on Facebook’s bottom line, at least as it stands right now. Even if all 100 of Facebook’s biggest advertisers joined in, they would account for just 6% of the company’s annual ad revenue.

      • More than 600 ballots invalidated due to at-home voting irregularities in Moscow

        Two of Moscow’s districts saw more than 600 ballots invalidated due to irregularities involving at-home voting in Russia’s ongoing plebiscite on constitutional amendments, reports Ilya Massukh, the head of Moscow’s Community Headquarters for Election Monitoring. 

      • A Driving Force

        When considering debates about political formulations as nebulous yet as desperately crucial as “the Latinx vote,” it can be vexing to consider those Latinx who vote Republican. In the age of Covid-19, Black Lives Matter protests, and radical right Trumpism, how could they exist? What common ground could Latinx voters possibly find with the Republican Party and its current fusion of fascistic nativism and deadly bottom-line billionaire capitalism? After all, are Latinx not, in the eyes of the Trump faithful, the living embodiment of the dire threat that Samuel P. Huntington saw to “the distinct Anglo-Protestant culture of the founding settlers”?

      • ‘Only together’ An annotated reading of Vladimir Putin’s first and only national address devoted exclusively to Russia’s plebiscite on constitutional amendments

        On June 30, Vladimir Putin made his first and only national address exclusively devoted to Russia’s now ongoing plebiscite on constitutional amendments. Unlike in recent marathon speeches about the government’s responses to the coronavirus pandemic, the president spoke for just three minutes this time, never once mentioning the most controversial amendment up for approval: the “zeroing out” of Putin’s presidential term clock, which could theoretically extend his administration to 2036. This comes as little surprise, of course; in the campaign to boost voter turnout, the Russian authorities have totally avoided the subject of prolonging Vladimir Putin’s access to the presidency. 

      • Online voting in Russia’s constitutional plebiscite reaches 90 percent

        Roughly 90 percent of all voters registered to cast ballots online in Russia’s plebiscite on constitutional amendments (including reforms that could extend the Putin presidency to 2036) have already voted. As of the morning of June 30, election commissions had already issued more than 1.07 million ballots for remote voting.

      • The Hatchet Man’s Tale: Why Bolton Matters

        Unreliable narrators are a staple of literature. Consider the delusional, self-serving narrator of Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl or the way Humbert Humbert used his cultured references and gorgeous prose to dress up his crimes in Nabokov’s Lolita.

      • Online voting in Russia’s constitutional plebiscite closes with 93 percent turnout

        Online voting in Russia’s plebiscite on amendments to the constitution closed at 8:00 p.m., Moscow time, on June 30. In total, 93.02 percent of all voters registered to cast ballots online had voted by the closing of the online polls: of the 1,107,644 ballots issued for remote voting, 1,090,185 votes were received.

      • Russia’s Presidential Council denies reports of voting violations

        Nearly all of the reports of electoral violations collected by the voter protection movement “Golos” during the plebiscite on constitutional amendments are false, says Alexander Brod, a member of Russia’s Presidential Council for Civil Society and Human Rights and co-chair of the association “Civil Control.”

      • Censorship/Free Speech

        • Parler Speedruns The Content Moderation Learning Curve; Goes From ‘We Allow Everything’ To ‘We’re The Good Censors’ In Days

          Over the last few weeks Parler has become the talk of Trumpist land, with promises of a social media site that “supports free speech.” The front page of the site insists that its content moderation is based on the standards of the FCC and the Supreme Court of the United States:

        • ‘But Without 230 Reform, Websites Have No Incentive To Change!’ They Scream Into The Void As Every Large Company Pulls Ads From Facebook

          One of the most frustrating lines that we hear from people criticizing internet website content moderation is the idea that thanks to Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, websites have no incentive to do any moderation. This is a myth that I consider to be the flip side of the claims by aggrieved conservatives insisting that Section 230 requires “no bias” in moderation decisions. The “no incentive” people are (often lawyers) complaining about too little moderation. For reasons I cannot comprehend, they seem to think that the only motivation for doing anything is if the law requires you to do it. We’ve tried to debunk this notion multiple times, and yet it comes up again and again. Just a couple weeks ago in a panel about Section 230, a former top Hollywood lobbyist trotted it out.

        • VKontakte blocks popular misogynist group in Russia

          The Russian social network VKontakte has blocked a private community known as “Men’s State” (Muzhskoe Gosudarstvo) for inciting violent acts. According to the website TJournal, the misogynist group had roughly 160,000 members when administrators shut it down. About 4,000 members have since migrated to a reserve community page. Creator Vladislav Pozdnyakov has described the community’s ideology as “national-patriarchy.” 

        • Big win for online freedom in EU: key parts of France’s new “hate speech” law ruled unconstitutional

          One of the most worrying trends in today’s online world is a move by governments against “hate speech”. That’s a vague term in itself, so policing it is hard. Making things even worse, recent moves to rein in such hate speech typically involve placing the responsibility with online platforms such as Google, Facebook and Twitter. This effectively outsources censorship to private companies, which makes it much harder to scrutinize what they are doing, and why. Moreover, they will naturally tend to take down material which may or may not be “hate speech”, in order to avoid often major fines that can be imposed if they do not.

        • China’s national security law for Hong Kong covers everyone on Earth

          The new law is “asserting extraterritorial jurisdiction over every person on the planet,” wrote Donald Clarke, a professor of law at George Washington University. Alarmingly, the law has an even broader reach than mainland Chinese criminal law, which only holds a foreigner liable for a crime committed outside of China if the effect of that crime occurs in China. Hong Kong’s nationals security law has no such limitation, Clarke explained. “If you’ve ever said anything that might offend the [Chinese] or Hong Kong authorities, stay out of Hong Kong.”

        • Ethiopia is in uproar and its [I]nternet blocked over the shooting of a popular Oromo singer

          The shooting took place around 9:30 pm local time in the city’s Kality area. Addis Ababa Police said a number of suspects have been detained and that an investigation is ongoing. Thousands of outraged fans across the country have taken to the streets demanding justice. In an attempt to quell the riots and prevent news coverage of them, the Ethiopian government has shut down [I]nternet services nationwide.

        • ‘A calculated weapon of repression’: Democrats, activists, NGOs raise alarm over Hong Kong security law as gov’t hails enactment

          27 countries joint-statement – delivered by UK Ambassador Joshua Braithwaite at the United Nation Human Rights Council

        • China’s hue & cry over apps ban contradict its own rule of [I]nternet censorship

          The Great Firewall prevents users from accessing foreign news sites such as the BBC, The New York Times and the Wall Street Journal.

      • Freedom of Information/Freedom of the Press

      • Civil Rights/Policing

        • The Anchorage Museum, Anchorage Daily News and ProPublica Present “Unheard,” a Public Photography and Audio Installation Highlighting Alaska’s Sexual Assault Survivors

          “Unheard,” a new public photography installation, is being erected Wednesday on the façade of the Anchorage Museum. Co-presented by the Anchorage Museum, Anchorage Daily News and ProPublica, the installation features 27 empowering portraits of survivors of sexual assault from across Alaska, along with quotes from them about their experiences. The portraits and stories were originally published by the Daily News and ProPublica throughout June as part of a joint reporting project of the same name. Occupying 27 nine-foot panels on the museum’s outdoor façade, the photography installation also includes recorded audio from most of the people featured, literally making their voices heard. It will remain on view through mid-September.

          For more than a year, the Daily News and ProPublica have investigated sexual violence in Alaska, which has the highest rate of sexual assault in the nation — nearly four times the national average. Yet for some, it is a secret so embedded in everyday life that to discuss it is to disrupt the norm. The survivors featured in “Unheard” chose to speak publicly about their experiences.

        • An Opportunity to Listen as Our “Unheard” Project Becomes a Museum Installation

          Over the past year, the reporting teams at the Anchorage Daily News and ProPublica have explored Alaska’s high rate of sexual assault and have worked to bring attention to the survivors who have gone unheard. On Wednesday, we’ll add another medium to the collection: an outdoor installation at the Anchorage Museum.

          The installation launches at the close of a monthlong project about 29 survivors who chose to speak about what happened to them. Each day in June, we published a portrait and a story of a survivor of sexual assault on the front page of the paper. All of the participants worked closely with Daily News photographers to create a portrait true to them. (We wrote about that process in this essay.) These individual features culminate Wednesday with a “space of silence” dedicated to those who are not yet ready to share their stories.

        • Then as Farce: the Commodification of Black Lives Matter

          Martin Luther King was arrested in April 1963 for publicly protesting, an act deemed illegal in Alabama at the time. While in jail, eight white clergy figures publicly admonished King, judging his actions “unwise and untimely”. It was this which prompted King to respond with his little-shared letter about the “white moderate”, a comment that is most often elided whenever progressive liberals feel the need to throw out some a cute meme on an auspicious “I’m not a Racist” occasion, like MLK Day.

        • Since We Reported on Flawed Roadside Drug Tests, Five More Convictions Have Been Overturned

          Courts in Las Vegas overturned five drug convictions following reporting by ProPublica that detailed flaws in the field tests that police departments across the country have used for decades to make arrests.

          The Clark County District Attorney’s Office only disclosed the 2017 wrongful convictions this year to the National Registry of Exonerations, which added them to its national database. The Las Vegas exonerees were convicted of possessing small amounts of cocaine between 2011 and 2013.

        • Protest Song Of The Week: ‘Domestic Terrorist’ From Die Jim Crow Records

          Die Jim Crow Records, the first record label for current and formerly incarcerated musicians, has recorded music in five prisons in Colorado, Ohio, Mississippi, and South Carolina.

          The label released their first album on Juneteenth—BL Shirelle’s “Assata Troi”—and now they have released a single, “Domestic Terrorist,” by a musician who is unnamed in order to protect them while they remain incarcerated.

        • How An NYPD Officer Can Hit A Teen With His Car In Front Of Several Witnesses And Get Away With It

          The NYPD has made internal discipline procedures a loop so closed that even its “independent” oversight — the Civilian Complaint Review Board — can’t get in the door. The NYPD is effectively its own oversight. Decisions made by the CCRB can be overridden by the Police Commissioner. Even if the Commissioner agrees with the findings, recommended punishments can be departed from or ignored completely.

        • NY Judge Apparently Unaware Of The Supreme Court’s Ban On Prior Restraint: Puts Temporary Restraining Order On Trump’s Niece’s Book

          Last week, we wrote about the president’s brother, Robert Trump, suing his (and the president’s) niece, Mary Trump to try to block her from publishing her new book that criticizes the president. The initial filing to block the publication failed for being in the wrong court, but the follow up attempt has succeeded, at least temporarily. NY Supreme Court (despite the name, this is the equivalent of the district court in NY) Judge Hal Greenwald doesn’t seem to have even bothered to do even a cursory 1st Amendment analysis regarding prior restraint, but agreed to rush out a temporary restraining order, while ordering the the parties to brief the matter before July 10th on whether or not the ban should be made permanent.

        • What Makes Us Crack

          How sorrow breaks us and rage fuels us.

        • The Victory of DACA Is a Reminder that Nothing Will Put Us Down

          The passion organizers poured into DACA galvanized me and many others to keep organizing—and to aim for the collective liberation of all.

        • Removing ‘Unjust Barrier’ to Asylum, Federal Judge Strikes Down Trump Rule Forcing Refugees to Seek Safety Elsewhere

          The ruling reaffirmed “that for the last 244 years we have been, and will continue to be, a country ruled by law, not men,” said Human Rights First.

        • Wrongly arrested Black man said he knew he was going to be falsely accused as police approached him

          The way Wheeler was holding Smith prohibited him from putting his hands behind his back and caused Smith’s wrist to break when he was slammed to the ground, Haugabrook said.

        • `You broke my wrist!’ Police sued for taking down wrong man

          Body camera video shows Antonio Arnelo Smith handing his driver’s license to a Black police officer and answering questions cooperatively before a white officer walks up behind him, wraps him in a bear hug and slams him face-first to the ground.

          “Oh my God, you broke my wrist!” the 46-year-old Black man screams as two more white Valdosta officers arrive, holding him down and handcuffing him following the takedown. One eventually tells Smith he’s being arrested on an outstanding warrant, and is immediately corrected by the first officer: They’ve got the wrong man.

        • Jamaal Bowman on NY Primary Upset, Rent Strikes, Police Brutality & Opposing West Bank Annexation

          As a surge of a progressive candidates of color see victories in Democratic primaries across the country, we speak with former Bronx middle school principal Jamaal Bowman about his upset victory over New York Congressmember Eliot Engel, the 16-term Foreign Affairs Committee chair. Bowman ran on a Green New Deal, Medicare for All platform and recently joined protests demanding an end to racism and police brutality. He says his upset over Engel came down to mobilizing people who are “disenfranchised and ignored” by the political establishment. “We didn’t just target those who consistently vote in primaries. We targeted everyone,” he says. Looking forward, he describes his support for Palestine, a rent strike and police accountability.

        • Wasteful, Secret and Vicious: the Absurd Prosecution of Witness K and Bernard Collaery

          This week has not been a good one for the Australian legal system. For those who feel that an open justice process requires abuses of power to be exposed and held to account, it was particularly awful. It began with the Q&A program on the national broadcaster, the ABC, which supposedly gives an airing to the vox populi. The dominant theme of the conversation between the panellists was that of secrecy and the prosecution (read persecution) of lawyer Bernard Collaery and his client, a former intelligence officer known as Witness K.

        • Confronting the Living History of the Civil Rights Struggle

          Our country is experiencing a moment of honest reckoning, one that has been a long time building. To understand the enormity of this moment, one needs only to turn to the American South for the living, breathing memory of the struggle for civil rights.

        • ‘2020. It will be ours!’ Art group projects political ad favoring constitutional changes on American Embassy building in Moscow

          Members of the Russian art group “Re:vansh” projected an advertisement promoting voting in favor of the amendments to the constitution on the building of the American Embassy in Moscow on the evening of June 29.

        • Aimee Stephens
        • Should NYC’s Wall Street Be Renamed “Eric Garner St.?”

          Scenes of sorrow spread across the US. Football teams apologize. Cops march with demonstrators. Democratic Party politicians call for “structural change” in police departments.

        • My Student Comes Home

          When Lawrence Bell, an orphan living in an abandoned house in Camden, New Jersey, went to prison he was 14-years-old. Barely literate and weighing no more than 90 pounds, he had been pressured by three Camden police detectives into signing a confession for a murder and rape he insisted at his trial he did not commit, although admitted he was in the car of the man who dragged a young mother into the bushes where she was sexually assaulted and strangled to death. It made no difference. The confession condemned him, although there was no scientific evidence or any independent witnesses tying him to the crime. He would not be eligible to go before a parole board for 56 years. It was a de facto life sentence.

        • Progressive Lawmakers Call on US to ‘Take a Clear Stand’ by Suspending Military Aid If Israel Carries Out ‘Illegal’ Annexation

          “American taxpayers shouldn’t be supporting policies that undermine our values and interests, in Israel, in Palestine, or anywhere.”

        • ESPN to Follow “Somebody’s Daughter” in Bringing International Attention to the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women Tragedy

          As the Blackfeet Tribal Business Council continues to take decisive action to protect the Pikunni people from the coronavirus pandemic, another existential threat to the tribe and all of Indian Country will receive international focus this week on ESPN. Blackfeet Boxing: Not Invisible directed by Kristen Lappas and Tom Rinaldi will premiere on the “worldwide leader” this Tuesday at 7.30 pm EST. However, this isn’t a rags to riches “Cinderella Man” story, this is a story where victory is survival.

          Filmed at the Blackfeet Nation Boxing Club in Browning, Montana, the 29 minute film follows the club’s owner and trainer, Frankie Kipp, as he uses boxing to empower Blackfeet women and girls in the all-too familiar struggle to avoid being the next MMIWG victim. Kipp’s club members are literally training for the fight of their lives. “If you don’t fight for your life, you won’t have a life,” said Kipp.

          Under 7% of Montana’s population is indigenous, but indigenous people comprise approximately 26% of the state’s missing persons. The Urban Indian Health Institute logs Montana as the state with the fifth highest incidence of MMIW cases in the US. Blackfeet Boxing: Not Invisible is framed against the backdrop of one of Indian Country’s highest-profile MMIWG cases, the disappearance of Blackfeet tribal member Ashley Loring Heavy Runner.

        • The West’s humanitarian reckoning

          #BlackLivesMatter and the COVID-19 pandemic are exposing the hypocrisies and structural problems that have long underpinned international humanitarian action, said activists, aid workers, and analysts during an online conversation recently hosted by The New Humanitarian.

          In a departure from the diplomatic parlance that tends to dominate discussions about reform of humanitarian aid, they called for taking a “sledgehammer” to systems that perpetuate inequality, de-funding institutions like the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, and abandoning the humanitarian principle of neutrality as ways of “decolonising” international aid.

      • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

      • Digital Restrictions (DRM)

        • We don’t really own the digital possessions that we buy online

          The popularity of access-based consumption has obscured the rise of a range of fragmented ownership configurations in the digital realm. These provide the customer with an illusion of ownership while restricting their ownership rights. Companies such as Microsoft and Apple present consumers with the option to “buy” digital products such as eBooks. Consumers often make the understandable assumption that they will have full ownership rights over the products that they pay for, just as they have full ownership rights over the physical books that they buy from their local bookstore.

          However, many of these products are subject to end user licence agreements which set out a more complex distribution of ownership rights. These long legal agreements are rarely read by consumers when it comes to products and services online. And even if they do read them, they are unlikely to fully understand the terms.

          When purchasing eBooks, the consumer often actually purchases a non-transferable licence to consume the eBook in restricted ways. For instance, they may not be permitted to pass the eBook on to a friend once they have finished reading, as they might do with a physical book. Also, as we have seen in the case of Microsoft, the company retains the right to revoke access at a later date. These restrictions on consumer ownership are often encoded into digital goods themselves as automated forms of enforcement, meaning that access can be easily withdrawn or modified by the company.

      • Monopolies

        • “Don’t Believe Proven Liars”: The Absolute Minimum Standard of Prudence in Merger Scrutiny

          Anti-monopoly enforcement has seen a significant shift since the 1970s. Where the Department of Justice once routinely brought suits against anticompetitive mergers, today, that’s extremely rare, even between giant companies in highly concentrated industries. (The strongest remedy against a monopolist—breaking them up altogether—is a relic of the past). Regulators used to go to court to block mergers to prevent companies from growing so large that they could abuse their market power. In place of blocking mergers, today’s competition regulators like to add terms and conditions to them, exacting promises from companies to behave themselves after the merger is complete. This safeguard continues to enjoy popularity with competition regulators, despite the fact that companies routinely break their public promises to safeguard users’ privacy and rarely face consequences for doing so. (These two facts may be related!) When they do get sanctioned, the punishment almost never exceeds the profits from the broken promise. “A fine is a price.” Today, we’d like to propose a modest, incremental improvement to this underpowered deterrent:

          Read on for three significant broken promises we’d be fools to believe again.

        • Patents

          • Software Patents

            • Q2 2020 Patent Dispute Report

              The apparent shutdown has not deterred a significant rise in Aggregators and Finance-backed entities along with increasing litigation being filed in the Western District of Texas. This has driven cases in Q2 to the highest since Q4 of 2016. Several NPEs have shown new strategies such as WSOU Investments who has focused on filing a large number of single patent cases against tech companies. It is not surprising though, once one realizes that the CEO was previously heading Uniloc, a well known NPE who was a profligate filer. In addition the PTAB saw a modest increase compared to previous quarters and Unified Patents was the #3 overall.


              Litigation reached an all-time high since Q4 of 2016 with 1,069 new patent cases, with 66% of cases being asserted by NPEs.

              The Western District of Texas has now become the leading venue for patent litigation, with a 6-time increase in NPE Aggregators and a 7-time increase in finance-backed litigation.

              PTAB filings are up 12% from Q1 of 2020, also reaching an all-time high since Q4 of 2018.

              NPEs continue to dominate High-Tech patent assertions with 88%; however, NPEs only accounted for 60% of High-Tech AIA challenges, an 8% decrease from Q1 of 2020.

            • MasterObjects patent challenged as likely invalid

              On June 30, 2020, Unified filed a petition for inter partes review (IPR) against U.S. Patent 10,311,073, owned and asserted by MasterObjects, Inc., an NPE. The ‘073 patent is directed to partial search technology, including asynchronous retrieval of information from a database. MasterObjects has filed suit involving the ’073 patents and others against several companies, including Amazon, Microsoft, Google, Yahoo, Facebook, and eBay.

            • In this Case, Persuasive Authority Must be Considered

              ECT sued ShoppersChoice on its US9373261, but the district court (S.D.Fla.) dismissed the case on the pleadings–holding that the claims were ineligible under 35 U.S.C. § 101.

        • Copyrights

          • Rightsholders Want African Countries to Up Their Anti-Piracy Game

            According to a coalition of prominent copyright industry groups, piracy remains a widespread and serious problem among all African countries. United in the IIPA, they ask the US Government to make trade benefits for sub-Saharan African countries dependent on local copyright laws and the effectiveness of their anti-piracy enforcement.

          • Police Arrest Pirate IPTV Operator & ‘Hijack’ Streams With Anti-Piracy Warning

            Police officers from a Cyber and Serious Organised Crime Unit in the UK arrested a 24-year-old man yesterday under suspicion of operating a pirate IPTV service. Users of at least one service are now being presented with an anti-piracy warning delivered by Norfolk and Suffolk Police. The force in question informs TF that the warning is genuine and not part of a hack.

          • Companies Issuing Bogus Copyright Claims To Hide Police Training Materials From The Public

            California law says all police training materials must be published “conspicuously” on its Peace Officers Standards and Training (POST) website. This is part of the reforms to public records law that finally allowed the public to have access to law enforcement records related to misconduct and use-of-force. This is the law a bunch of cops sued over, as well as a bunch of journalists and activists. The former group is still trying to argue they shouldn’t have to fully comply with the law. The latter is arguing cops aren’t fully complying with this law.


Links 1/7/2020: Tails 4.8, Serpent OS

Posted in News Roundup at 6:45 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Summer came: show your Linux love

      Given that Linux and open source software are free and compete with monopolistic companies, they need financial, moral and media support. As is well known, the greater the Linux market share (the percentage of Linux users), the more companies will support it. One of the most important ways you can contribute to Linux support and development (of course after a financial donation) is advertising! But what does this have to do with Summer?

    • Generation Linux!

      We’re all quite old here at Linux Format. Effy’s looking forward to retirement, I’m enjoying the fresh and exciting new aches and pains that my joints bring each day, and Jonni’s looking forward to many decades paying off his boat’s mortgage.
      So we’re all set in our ways. Effy’s been using Mint for an age, I’m happy using Ubuntu and even Jonni doesn’t like updating his install of Arch too often these days. But there’s a new generation of Linux users coming through and they’re looking for new features, new approaches and they’re bringing with them the next-gen of Linux distros. Some of these distros sport cutting-edge technology, while others offer a super-slick user experience, but at their hearts they’re all running the Linux kernel.
      So this issue we’ve tasked Jonni to hunt down the best of the new breed of distros and pick them apart, explaining what makes them special and why you’d want to give them a spin. We think you might like them!

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • Review: System76’s Lemur Pro

        If you’re a Linux user on the hunt for a new laptop, there’s quite a bit of preparation and research you must do on top of the regular research buying such an expensive piece of equipment already entails. Reading forum posts from other Linux users with the laptop you’re interested in, hunting for detailed specifications to make sure that specific chip version or that exact piece of exotic hardware is fully supported, checking to see if your favourite distribution has adequate support for it, and so on.

        There is, however, another way. While vastly outnumbered, there are laptops sold with Linux preinstalled. Even some of the big manufacturers, such as Dell, sell laptops with Linux preinstalled, but often only on older models that have been out for a while, or while not fully supporting all hardware (the fingerprint reader and infrared camera on my XPS 13 were not supported by Linux, for instance). For the likes of Dell, Linux in the consumer space is an afterthought, a minor diversion, and it shows.

    • Server

      • Working with Terraform and Kubernetes

        Maintaining Kubestack, an open-source Terraform GitOps Framework for Kubernetes, I unsurprisingly spend a lot of time working with Terraform and Kubernetes. Kubestack provisions managed Kubernetes services like AKS, EKS and GKE using Terraform but also integrates cluster services from Kustomize bases into the GitOps workflow. Think of cluster services as everything that’s required on your Kubernetes cluster, before you can deploy application workloads.

        Hashicorp recently announced better integration between Terraform and Kubernetes. I took this as an opportunity to give an overview of how Terraform can be used with Kubernetes today and what to be aware of.

        In this post I will however focus only on using Terraform to provision Kubernetes API resources, not Kubernetes clusters.

        Terraform is a popular infrastructure as code solution, so I will only introduce it very briefly here. In a nutshell, Terraform allows declaring a desired state for resources as code, and will determine and execute a plan to take the infrastructure from its current state, to the desired state.

        To be able to support different resources, Terraform requires providers that integrate the respective API. So, to create Kubernetes resources we need a Kubernetes provider.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • Raspberry Pi Cluster Episode 5 – Benchmarking the Turing Pi

        In this post, I’m going to talk about the Turing Pi’s performance. I’ll compare it to a more traditional Raspberry Pi cluster, my Pi Dramble, and talk about important considerations for your cluster, like what kind of storage you should use, or whether you should run a 32-bit or 64-bit Pi operating system.

        As with all the other work I’ve done on this cluster, I’ve been documenting it all in my open source Turing Pi Cluster project on GitHub.

      • mintCast 338 – Two Oh Snap

        First up, in our Wanderings, Owen refurbishes, Tony prints new stuff, Moss has a panic attack, Joe attends a LUG, Bo games, and Leo upgrades to 20.

      • The Hard Work of Hardware | LINUX Unplugged 360

        We’re joined by two guests who share their insights into building modern Linux hardware products.

        Plus we try out Mint 20, cover some big Gnome fixes, and a very handy open source noise suppression pick!

        Special Guests: Alfred Neumayer, Brent Gervais, Drew DeVore, and Jeremy Soller.

    • Kernel Space

      • Intel Unveils New “KMB” DRM Driver For Their New SoC With An ARM CPU + Movidius VPU

        Intel has introduced a new Direct Rendering Manager (DRM) kernel driver for Linux.

        This new “KMB” DRM driver is initially just for their Keem Bay SoC platform. Keem Bay is the codename for their next-gen computer vision offering for inference edge computing with Movidius VPU. Keem Bay details have been light since the initial announcement at the AI Summit last November.

      • Graphics Stack

        • Khronos Releases SYCL 2020 Provisional Specification

          The Khronos Group has announced the provisional specification of SYCL 2020 as the newest version of this higher-level programming model originally designed for OpenCL that is based on pure single-source C++.

          The SYCL 2020 provisional specification is available today and is now based on C++17 where as formerly SYCL had been based on C++11. SYCL 2020 is also bringing new programming abstractions like unified shared memory, group algorithms, sub-groups, and other features.

        • AMDVLK 2020.Q2.6 Brings More Performance Tuning

          The AMD Radeon Vulkan driver developers are ending out June by shipping their sixth open-source snapshot of the quarter.

          With AMDVLK 2020.Q2.6, there are continued performance tuning/optimization efforts. There has been performance tuning going on to benefit Ghost Recon Breakpoint and Zombie Army 4: Dead War under Wine / Steam Play. There is also improved pipeline compiler performance with this Vulkan driver update.

        • Mike Blumenkrantz: Nirly There

          In yesterday’s post, I left off in saying that removing an assert() from the constant block index check wasn’t going to work quite right. Let’s see why that is.

        • Monado: Multi application support with XR_EXTX_overlay

          By implementing this extension we are exposing Monado’s multi application support, which was recently merged to master.

          In the video below you can see Monado compositing the rendering of Blender’s VR view and the xrgears demo displaying a XrCompositionLayerProjection as overlay. The demo also showcases Monado’s ability to deal with multiple graphics APIs as Blender uses OpenGL and xrgears Vulkan to submit its frames.

          To enable the extension in xrgears only this small change was required, which enables the XR_EXTX_overlay extension and passes the XrSessionCreateInfoOverlayEXTX struct to the graphics bindings `next` field.

    • Applications

      • To-Do App With Built In Timer “Go For It!” Updated With Pomodoro Timer, Configurable Shortcuts

        Go For It! productivity application has been updated to version 1.8.0. The new release adds Pomodoro timer mode, configurable keyboard shortcuts, an option to log the time spent working on a task to the todo.txt files, and more.

        Go For It! is a Gtk tool which includes a to-do list and a timer. It uses the Todo.txt format, which is supported by a plethora of applications, for both desktops and mobile devices; Todo.txt is a popular to-do list format in which the data is stored in a flat text file. The application is available for Windows and Linux.

        The most important change in the latest Go For It! 1.8.0 is a new option to change the timer mode. The time break time or time between breaks doesn’t have to be the same anymore – you can now set the timer mode to Simple, Pomodoro, or use a custom time schedule.

      • Zorin OS Privacy Pack

        Search engine – Startpage.com – visit this privacy focused search engine and click to make it default instead of Google.

        Tracker protection – uBlock Origin – install this addon to your web browser and it will block all advertisements as well as online trackers.

        Browsing security – HTTPS Everywhere – install this addon too and automatically every connection to websites will be forcefully encrypted.

      • Introducing dns-tor-proxy, a new way to do all of your DNS calls over Tor

        dns-tor-proxy is a small DNS server which you can run in your local system along with the Tor process. It will use the SOCKS5 proxy provided from Tor, and route all of your DNS queries over encrypted connections via Tor.

        By default the tool will use (from Cloudflare) as the upstream server, but as the network calls will happen over Tor, this will provide you better privacy than using directly.

        In this first release I am only providing source packages, maybe in future I will add binaries so that people can download and use them directly.

    • Instructionals/Technical

    • Games

      • Charming dungeon crawling adventure ‘UnderMine’ launches August 6

        After about five years in development and close to 120,000 players later, UnderMine is getting ready to leave Early Access on August 6 to have you dig deep for gold.

        The big 1.0 introduces a new final boss encounter with a cinematic ending, post-credits story content, additional scenarios, plus new items, enemies, challenges, and of course, secrets. The full game arrives after nearly a year in Early Access, which had five major content updates that added in new levels, bosses, the Othermine “true roguelike mode”, and more which might be the biggest update yet. Thorium also confirmed more is to come after release.

      • Ideas for Game Projects in C++

        Before you start programming, it is good to know more about your idea than the basic idea. You need to go beyond “A creature running through a forest.” Build a story; users can relate to and then decide what it needs to feel real. Having said that, to get started, you need to select these details.
        In this article, you will see a few ideas on what you can build quickly to get some action on the screen. Simply put, you should use these ideas for the on-screen work after your idea for the entire story is ready.

      • Prime OS Review an Indian Android Emulator for Playing PUBG Mobile and Call of Duty

        If you haven’t heard of Prime OS then you’re not alone. It’s a new android emulator that is very different from what most users including myself are used to. Most android emulators function on your laptop or desktop as a virtual machine that runs on top of Windows. Prime OS is very different from them. Prime OS is more like Chrome OS without limited functions. It runs separately from windows. Prime OS offers users something that no other android emulator is offering right now. That is to use the Android OS as a fully functioning replacement for Windows on desktops.


        If you need to choose between Prime OS or Ubuntu as your other operating system then the obvious choice is Ubuntu. Ubuntu is a proper desktop operating system that offers a lot of functionality and practicality than android on desktops. Choose Prime OS only if you want a proper android experience on a desktop.

      • MediaTek Helio G35 & G25 Entry-Level SoCs Feature MediaTek HyperEngine Game Technology

        So far, the company had integrated the HyperEngine technology into premium SoCs such as Helio G80 or Helio G90T powered by Cortex-A75/A76 cores, and BiFrost GPUs. There are aggressively Helio G90T priced phones such as Redmi Note 8 Pro going for about $240, but to address the lower-end side of the market, MediaTek has now introduced Helio G35 and G25 octa-core Cortex-A53 SoC with HyperEngine Game Technology.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • Relive the NeXTSTEP Operating System with Window Maker

        Released in September 1989, NeXTSTEP was the pioneering operating system behind Steve Jobs’ NeXT computer line, including the NeXTcube – one of the most desirable computers of all time. Although relatively unknown today, NeXTSTEP inspired many modern interfaces, gave birth to the Web with the first browser, and was even used by id Software to develop Doom and Quake.

        You may think NeXTSTEP is now lost to time, but what if you could use essentially the same interface on a modern Linux PC with no need for emulation? With Window Maker you can.

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • Plasma 5.19 testing in Groovy Gorilla

          Are you running the development release of Kubuntu Groovy Gorilla 20.10, or wanting to try the daily live ISO?

          Plasma 5.19 has now landed in 20.10 and is available for testing. You can read about the new features and improvements in Plasma 5.19 in the official KDE release announcement.

        • GSoC Review 1 – Qt3D based backend for KStars

          In the fourth week of GSoC, I worked on adding support for Skybox which supports the projection modes implemented last week. I also added the grid implementation in KStars based on the prototype.

        • GSoC ’ 20 Progress: Week 3 and 4

          The past two weeks did not see as much progress as I would have liked because of my university exams and evaluations. Now, let’s focus on the work that I could do before I got swamped with the academic work and term exams.

          I started the third week by working on drafting a basic QML display of the subtitle model items, like the position of the subtitles in the timeline. I drafted a basic delegate QML model to display the start positions of each subtitle line. Then I began working on integrating the back-end part (which I had mentioned in the previous post) with the basic front-end part (displaying the position of the subtitles).

          In this process of integrating the subtitle model with the QML delegate model, I encountered a few logical errors with my code and some connections with the Subtitle Model which I had completely overlooked. It was also during this time that I realised I had missed out some key functions while writing the subtitle model class.

        • Google Summer of Code 2020 – week 4 and 5

          Hi, today I will talk about my week 4 and week 5 and bring some news!

          The last post was short but this one will make up for it, explaining some important bits, and changes, in the structure of mark that changed/improved during the first month of coding in GSoC.

          In week 4, I documented a huge part of the existing code, although there is still a need for some updates. Currently in week 5, I am fixing some bugs of the new logic and I will document the newly created Painter class (more information below), also start developing the logic for text annotation.

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • Arc Menu 47 Released with New Layout, Other Improvements

          A new version of Arc Menu, the popular app launcher extension for GNOME Shell, is now available to download.

          Arc Menu v47 includes a new menu layout (called “Tognee”, and pictured above), adds the option to rank installed software in alphabetical order (very handy), and introduces a new (and entirely opt-in) “frequent apps” view.

          Mouse scrolling and keyboard navigation is said to be improved in this release; application context menus and tooltips boast better contrast; and there are new preset themes.

          The icon picker, which lets you set a different menu icon, boasts some UI tweaks to make sifting through and finding glyphs a touch faster and saner. A selection of new panel icons are also said to be available include an openSUSE icon.

          Also look out for new “Flip Layout Horizontally” and “Searchbar Location” options available in traditional panel layouts.

          Finally, Arc Menu 47 requires GNOME 3.36. You can continue to use older versions of the menu on GNOME 3.34 and earlier, you just won’t get all of the ‘new’ stuff mentioned in this roundup.

        • Fractal: Refactoring and the review process

          In this year GSoC, Alejandro is working on Fractal, moving code from the backend to the client, to try to simplify the code used to communicate with the matrix.org server and maybe in the future we can replace fractal-matrix-api with the matrix-rust-sdk. And then we’ll have less code in our project to maintain.

          This is a great work, something needed in a project with a technological debt of several years. I created this project to learn Rust, and also I was learning about the matrix protocol during the project build. And other contributors do the same. So we’ve been building one thing on top another for a lot of years.

          In this kind of community driven projects it’s the way to go. For some time we’ve people interested and developers think about the design and start change some parts or to write new functionality following a new design pattern. But voluntary developers motivation change in time and they left the project and the next one continues the work with a different vision.

    • Distributions

      • Sans Investigative Forensics Toolkit (SIFT)

        SIFT is a computer forensics distribution created by the SANS Forensics team for performing digital forensics. This distro includes most tools required for digital forensics analysis and incident response examinations. SIFT is open-source and publicly available for free on the internet. In today’s digital world, where crimes are committed every day using digital technology, attackers are becoming more and more stealthy and sophisticated. This can cause companies to lose important data, with millions of users exposed. Protecting your organization from these attacks requires strong forensic techniques and knowledge in your defense strategy. SIFT provides forensic tools for file systems, memory and network investigations to perform in-depth forensic investigations.
        In 2007, SIFT was available for download and was hard coded, so whenever an update arrived, users had to download the newer version. With further innovation in 2014, SIFT became available as a robust package on Ubuntu, and can now be downloaded as a workstation. Later, in 2017, a version of SIFT came to market allowing greater functionality and providing users the ability to leverage data from other sources. This newer version contains more than 200 tools from third parties, and contains a package manager requiring users to type only one command to install a package. This version is more stable, more efficient, and provides better functionality in terms of memory analysis. SIFT is scriptable, meaning that users can combine certain commands to make it work according to their needs.

        SIFT can run on any system running on Ubuntu or Windows OS. SIFT supports various evidence formats, including AFF, E01, and raw format (DD). Memory forensics images are also compatible with SIFT. For file systems, SIFT supports ext2, ext3 for linux, HFS for Mac and FAT, V-FAT, MS-DOS, and NTFS for Windows.

      • Manjaro Linux 32-bit is dead

        We have had 64-bit processors in the mainstream for many years now, but for some reason, developers have continued to maintain 32-bit versions of operating systems. This includes Microsoft, who still supports 32-bit Windows 10 in 2020 (although the company plans to wind that down). Thankfully, many Linux distributions such as Fedora, Tails, and Linux Mint have killed off their 32-bit versions, choosing to instead focus on 64-bit.

        And now, another major Linux distribution follows suit. You see, as of today, Manjaro Linux 32-bit is dead. This is a very wise move, as 32-bit computers are obsolete and maintaining a 32-bit variant of an OS is a waste of resources. Anyone that disagrees is very wrong.

      • Ex-Solus Dev is Now Creating a Truly Modern Linux Distribution

        The ex-developer of Solus Linux has announced Serpent Linux, a truly modern Linux distribution which is not dependent on GNU toolchain.

      • Meet Serpent OS: A Truly Modern Linux Distribution Under Development

        Freedom to choose, customize, create, and distribute is what Linux is known for. That is why we have more than 500 active Linux-based operating systems. In addition to the same, we’re going to have another new Linux distribution called Serpent OS, which is currently under heavy development.

        Serpent OS is a new project announced by Ikey Doherty, who is currently CEO at Lispy Snake and also ex-leader and founder of Solus OS. He is the person who gave us one of the most beautiful Linux distribution Solus OS and desktop environment Budgie.

        Now, he is creating a truly modern Linux Distribution with notably different goals from the mainstream offering. To know what it means to say, you have to know what Serpent Linux is not going to be.

      • Reviews

        • Elementary OS 5.1 Hera Review

          Elementary OS has a reputation for elegant minimalism and user friendliness, enjoying a strong fan base. Its latest release, Hera 5.1, has been out for a while now, but the company has recently made an interesting move in one of its updates. In this Elementary OS review, as we put Hera through its paces, we’ll explore what’s new, what to expect if its your first time using the OS, and how it stacks up against rival desktops.


          Elementary OS is a gorgeous product that will leave an excellent lasting impression and will likely win over new Linux users. Nevertheless, there are situations when all this tasteful minimalism may become a hindrance. Sometimes elegance needs to make way for brute force, and if you have a desktop PC and rely on heavy customization, you’re probably better off with something like KDE, MATE, or Xfce.

          However, on portable computers this system is right at home. There are times when it genuinely feels like you’re using the future of Linux. I’m personally using KDE Neon on my main workstation, but when I’m on the go, I use Elementary on an ultra-mobile PC. The two machines complement each other nicely, and together, they make for a very powerful and satisfying combination.

          Is Elementary too Mac-like for your tastes? Check out our list of the best Linux distros for Windows users. Or maybe you just want to see the competition? Check out our list of 5 of the Best Linux Distributions for Mac Users.

      • BSD

        • The unfortunate limitation in ZFS filesystem quotas and refquota

          This limitation affects our pool space limits, because we use them for two different purposes; restricting people to only the space that they’ve purchased and insuring that pools always have a safety margin of space. Since pools contain many filesystems, we must limit their total space usage using the quota property. But that means that any snapshots we make for administrative purposes consume space that’s been purchased, and if we make too many of them we’ll run the pool out of space for completely artificial reasons. It would be better to be able to have two quotas, one for the space that the group has purchased (which would limit only regular filesystem activity) and one for our pool safety margin (which would limit snapshots too).

      • Screenshots/Screencasts

        • Linux Mint 20 “Ulyana” Full Installation Walkthrough

          Linux Mint 20 “Ulyana” was released recently, and as usual I’ve created a walkthrough video on the installation process. This procedure will walk you through wiping your drive and installing Mint as your only OS. The procedure hasn’t changed much (if at all) from previous releases, so if you’ve already seen the process, there’s nothing new this time around for the most part.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • Ask the experts during Red Hat Summit Virtual Experience: Open House

          One of the most popular activities during the Red Hat Summit Virtual Experience was the Ask the Experts sessions, where attendees could engage with Red Hat experts and leadership in real time, so we’re bringing it back for our Open House in July.

        • Making open source more inclusive by eradicating problematic language

          Open source has always been about differing voices coming together to share ideas, iterate, challenge the status quo, solve problems, and innovate quickly. That ethos is rooted in inclusion and the opportunity for everyone to meaningfully contribute, and open source technology is better because of the diverse perspectives and experiences that are represented in its communities. Red Hat is fortunate to be able to see the impact of this collaboration daily, and this is why our business has also always been rooted in these values.

          Like so many others, Red Hatters have been coming together the last few weeks to talk about ongoing systemic injustice and racism. I’m personally thankful to Red Hat’s D+I communities for creating awareness and opportunities for Red Hatters to listen in order to learn, and I’m grateful that so many Red Hatters are taking those opportunities to seek understanding.

        • The latest updates to Red Hat Runtimes

          Today, we are happy to announce that the latest release of Red Hat Runtimes is now available. This release includes updates that build upon the work the team has done over the past year for building modern, cloud-native applications.

          Red Hat Runtimes, part of the Red Hat Application Services portfolio, is a set of products, tools and components for developing and maintaining cloud-native applications. It offers lightweight runtimes and frameworks for highly-distributed cloud architectures, such as microservices or serverless applications. We continuously make updates and improvements to meet the changing needs of our customers, and to help developers better build business-critical applications. Read on for the latest.

        • Kourier: A lightweight Knative Serving ingress

          Until recently, Knative Serving used Istio as its default networking component for handling external cluster traffic and service-to-service communication. Istio is a great service mesh solution, but it can add unwanted complexity and resource use to your cluster if you don’t need it.

          That’s why we created Kourier: To simplify the ingress side of Knative Serving. Knative recently adopted Kourier, so it is now a part of the Knative family! This article introduces Kourier and gets you started with using it as a simpler, more lightweight way to expose Knative applications to an external network.

          Let’s begin with a brief overview of Knative and Knative Serving.

        • CodeTheCurve: A blockchain-based supply chain solution to address PPE shortages

          This past April, creative techies from all over the world gathered online for CodeTheCurve, a five-day virtual hackathon organized by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in partnership with IBM and SAP. Participants all worked toward the goal of creating digital solutions to address the global pandemic.

          Our team focused on the goal of improving the efficiency of the personal protective equipment (PPE) supply chain in order to prevent shortages for health care workers. With the rise of the current global pandemic, supplies of medical equipment have become more critical, particularly PPE for medical workers. In many places, PPE shortages have been a serious problem. To address this challenge, we proposed that a blockchain-based supply chain could help make this process faster and more reliable, thereby connecting health ministries, hospitals, producers, and banks, and making it easier to track and report information on supplies.

        • Analyze your Spark application using explain

          It is important that you have some understanding of Spark execution plan when you are optimizing your Spark applications. Spark provides an explain API to look at the Spark execution plan for your Spark SQL query. In this blog, I will show you how to get the Spark query plan using the explain API so you can debug and analyze your Apache Spark application. The explain API is available on the Dataset API. You can use it to know what execution plan Spark will use for your Spark query without actually running it. Spark also provides a Spark UI where you can view the execution plan and other details when the job is running. For Spark jobs that have finished running, you can view the Spark plan that was used if you have the Spark history server set up and enabled on your cluster. This is useful when tuning your Spark jobs for performance optimizations.

        • What’s new in Apache Spark 3.0

          The Apache Spark community announced the release of Spark 3.0 on June 18 and is the first major release of the 3.x series. The release contains many new features and improvements. It is a result of more than 3,400 fixes and improvements from more than 440 contributors worldwide. IBM Center of Open Source for Data and AI Technology (CODAIT) focuses on a number of selective open source technologies on machine learning, AI workflow, trusted AI, metadata, and big data process platform, etc. has delivered approximate hundreds of commits, including a couple of key features in this release.

        • GSoC Progress Report: Dashboard for Packit

          Hi, I am Anchit, a 19 y.o. from Chandigarh, India. I love programming, self-hosting, gaming, reading comic books, and watching comic-book based movies/tv.

          The first version of Fedora I tried was 21 when I came across it during my distro-hopping spree. I used it for a couple of months and then moved on to other distros. I came back to Fedora in 2017 after a couple of people on Telegram recommended it and have been using it ever since. A big reason why I stuck with Fedora this time is the community. Shout out to @fedora on Telegram. They’re nice, wholesome and helpful. They also got me into self-hosting and basic sys-admin stuff.

        • Fedora Looking To Offer Better Upstream Solution For Hiding/Showing GRUB Menu

          Fedora for the past few releases doesn’t show the GRUB boot-loader menu by default when only Fedora is installed on the system as there is little purpose for most users and it just interrupts the boot flow. But for those wanting to access the GRUB bootloader menu on reboot, they offer integration in GNOME to easily reboot into this menu. The other exception is the menu will be shown if the previous boot failed. This functionality has relied on downstream patches but now they are working towards a better upstream solution.

          Hans de Goede of Red Hat who led the original GRUB hidden boot menu functionality is looking to clean up this feature for Fedora 33. The hope is to get the relevant bits upstream into GNOME and systemd for avoiding the downstream patches they have been carrying. This reduces their technical debt and also makes it easier for other distributions to provide similar functionality.

        • Fedora Developers Discussing Possibility Of Dropping Legacy BIOS Support

          Fedora stakeholders are debating the merits of potentially ending legacy BIOS support for the Linux distribution and to only support UEFI-based installations.

          Given Fedora 33 GRUB changes planned and things being easier if they were to just switch to the UEFI-based systemd sd-boot as well as Intel planning to end legacy BIOS support in 2020 and UEFI being very common to x86_64 systems for many years now, Fedora developers are discussing whether it’s a good time yet for their bleeding-edge platform to also begin phasing out legacy BIOS support.

        • Fedora Looks To Introduce The Storage Instantiation Daemon

          As one of the last minute change proposals for Fedora 33 is to introduce the Red Hat backed Storage Instantiation Daemon “SID” though at least for this first release would be off by default. The Storage Instantiation Daemon is one of the latest storage efforts being worked on by Red Hat engineers.

          The Storage Instantiation Daemon is intended to help manage Linux storage device state tracking atop udev and reacts to changes via uevents. This daemon can offer an API for various device subsystems and provides insight into the Linux storage stack. More details on this newer open-source effort via sid-project.github.io.

        • Explore best practices for Spark performance optimization

          I am a senior software engineer working with IBM’s CODAIT team. We work on open source projects and advocacy activities. I have been working on open source Apache Spark, focused on Spark SQL. I have also been involved with helping customers and clients with optimizing their Spark applications. Apache Spark is a distributed open source computing framework that can be used for large-scale analytic computations. In this blog, I want to share some performance optimization guidelines when programming with Spark. The assumption is that you have some understanding of writing Spark applications. These are guidelines to be aware of when developing Spark applications.


          Spark has a number of built-in user-defined functions (UDFs) available. For performance, check to see if you can use one of the built-in functions since they are good for performance. Custom UDFs in the Scala API are more performant than Python UDFs. If you have to use the Python API, use the newly introduced pandas UDF in Python that was released in Spark 2.3. The pandas UDF (vectorized UDFs) support in Spark has significant performance improvements as opposed to writing a custom Python UDF. Get more information about writing a pandas UDF.

        • Volunteer your Raspberry Pi to IBM’s World Community Grid
        • “Project Springfield” Is Red Hat’s Effort To Improve Linux File-Systems / Storage

          Following recent talk of Fedora potentially switching to Btrfs and Red Hat’s Storage Instatiation Daemon among other Linux storage areas pursued by Red Hat, it turns out “Project Springfield” is some effort being pursued by the enterprise Linux giant for improving in this area.


          Given that Red Hat is already working a lot on the likes of Stratis and SID, it will be interesting to see what more there is to come in this area.

      • Debian Family

        • Tails 4.8 is out

          This release fixes many security vulnerabilities. You should upgrade as soon as possible.

        • Tails 4.8 Anonymous OS Released with Linux Kernel 5.6, Improved Security

          Tails 4.8 amnesic incognito live distribution has been released today and it looks to be a significant release that adds new security features and major under-the-hood upgrades.

          First and foremost, Tails 4.8 ships with the Linux 5.6 kernel series, which should add a new layer of hardware support, especially when running Tails on computers with newer components like Wi-Fi or graphics.

          Starting with this release, Tails no longer enables the Unsafe Browser by default, which could be used by attackers to deanonymize you due to a security vulnerability in another application.

        • Sparky news 2020/06

          The 6th monthly report of 2020 of the Sparky project:

          • Linux kernel updated up to version 5.7.6 & 5.8-rc3
          • added to repos: Popcorn-Time, eDEX-UI, Visual Studio Code, VSCodium, Bitcoin-Qt, Litecoin-Qt
          • Sparky 2020.06 of the rolling line released
          • a point release of the stable line is on the way, stay tuned

        • TeX Live Debian update 20200629

          More than a month has passed since the last update of TeX Live packages in Debian, so here is a new checkout!

        • Chris Lamb: Free software activities in June 2020

          As part of my duties of being on the board of directors of the Open Source Initiative and Software in the Public Interest I attended their respective monthly meetings and participated in various licensing and other discussions occurring on the internet, as well as the usual internal discussions regarding logistics and policy etc.


          One of the original promises of open source software is that distributed peer review and transparency of process results in enhanced end-user security. However, whilst anyone may inspect the source code of free and open source software for malicious flaws, almost all software today is distributed as pre-compiled binaries. This allows nefarious third-parties to compromise systems by injecting malicious code into ostensibly secure software during the various compilation and distribution processes.

          The motivation behind the Reproducible Builds effort is to ensure no flaws have been introduced during this compilation process by promising identical results are always generated from a given source, thus allowing multiple third-parties to come to a consensus on whether a build was compromised.


          This month I have worked 18 hours on Debian Long Term Support (LTS) and 5¼ hours on its sister Extended LTS project.

        • Paul Wise: FLOSS Activities June 2020

          This month I didn’t have any particular focus. I just worked on issues in my info bubble.


          The ifenslave and apt-listchanges work was sponsored by my employer. All other work was done on a volunteer basis.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Which Ubuntu Flavor Should You Choose?

          Kubuntu 20.04 comes with the KDE Plasma 5.18 LTS desktop environment. KDE is much more customizable that Gnome, making Kubuntu the perfect choice for those who demand a modern, ultra-customizable desktop and aren’t afraid they’ll get lost among the dozens of options.

        • UbuntuEd 20.04: A New Educational Linux Distribution For All Students

          Rudra Saraswat, a very young developer, has announced a new remix of Ubuntu called UbuntuEd. Earlier, he launched his own Ubuntu Unity Remix 20.04 and now has released the first stable version of UbuntuEd based on the latest long-term Ubuntu 20.04 (Focal Fossa).

          UbuntuEd 20.04: Ubuntu Educational Edition

          UbuntuEd 20.04 ‘Focal Fossa’ is a new Educational spin of Ubuntu for all students ranging from pre-school to university level. Interestingly, this Education Edition aims to fill the gap of discontinued Edubuntu Linux distribution.

        • Meet UbuntuEd 20.04, an Educational Ubuntu Flavor for Kids, Schools and Universities

          The team behind the Ubuntu Unity distribution have released today UbuntuEd 20.04, an unofficial, educational focused Ubuntu flavor for kids, schools and universities.

          Meet UbuntuEd, an educational edition of Ubuntu Linux created by Rudra Saraswat, the same person who created Ubuntu Unity, and designed as a substitute for the discontinued Edubuntu flavor.

          The first release of UbuntuEd is now available, based on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS (Focal Fossa) and featuring both GNOME and Unity7 desktop environments. In other words, you’re getting Ubuntu, Ubuntu Unity and Ubuntu Education in a single container.

          Users will be able to choose the right desktop environment for them, GNOME or Unity7, from the login screen. However, it looks like Unity7 is the default session when booting the live system and after the installation.

          As expected, UbuntuEd comes with a plethora of educational apps for kids, schools and universities. Four metapackages are also available for those who want to install additional educational apps if they need more. Moreover, it’s possible to install these metapackages on your existing Ubuntu systems.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Crust Drops Paywall For Open-Source CRM Alternative To Salesforce

        The Crust CRM suite that aims to compete with Salesforce has been open-source under an Apache 2.0 license but now its paywall has been dropped to make it more compelling as a free software CRM suite.

        Crust 2020.06 released today and adds new reporting to the suite, new options, better record exporting, and a variety of other improvements.

        Fundamentally though the biggest change is removing the paywall for all of their Crust software components, including their messaging component that can be seen as an open-source alternative to Slack, Crust CRM Suite as the “open-source Salesforce alternative”, and case/application management offerings as well.

      • Web Browsers

        • Mozilla

          • New Release: Tor Browser 10.0a2

            Tor Browser 10.0a2 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.

          • New Release: Tor Browser 9.5.1

            Tor Browser 9.5.1 is now available from the Tor Browser download page and also from our distribution directory.

            This release updates Firefox to 68.10.0esr and NoScript to 11.0.32.

          • Firefox 78

            Firefox 78.0 has been released. This is an Extended Support Release (ESR). The Protections Dashboard has new features to track the number of breaches that were resolved from the dashboard and to see if any of your saved passwords may have been exposed in a breach. More details about this and other new features can be found in the release notes.

          • Honza Bambas: Firefox enables link rel=”preload” support

            We enabled the link preload web feature support in Firefox 78, at this time only at Nightly channel and Firefox Early Beta and not Firefox Release because of pending deeper product integrity checking and performance evaluation.

          • Giorgio Maone: Save Trust, Save OTF

            As the readers of this blog almost surely know, I’m the author of NoScript, a web browser security enhancer which can be installed on Firefox and Chrome, and comes built-in with the Tor Browser.

            NoScript has received support by the Open Technology Fund (OTF) for specific development efforts: especially, to make it cross-browser, better internationalized and ultimately serving a wider range of users.

            OTF’s mission is supporting technology to counter surveillance and censorship by repressive regimes and foster Internet Freedom. One critical and strict requirement, for OTF to fund or otherwise help software projects, is them being licensed as Free/Libre Open Source Software (FLOSS), i.e. their code being publicly available for inspection, modification and reuse by anyone. Among the successful projects funded by OTF, you may know or use Signal, Tor, Let’s Encrypt, Tails, QubeOS, Wireshark, OONI, GlobaLeaks, and millions of users all around the world, no matter their political views, trust them because they are FLOSS, making vulnerabilities and even intentionally malicious code harder to hide.

            Now this virtuous modus operandi is facing an existential threat, started when the whole OTF leadership has been fired and replaced by Michael Pack, the controversial new CEO of USA Global Media (USAGM), the agency OTF reports to.

          • Mozilla Localization (L10N): L10n Report: June 2020 Edition

            Firefox 78 is currently in beta and will be released on June 30. The deadline to update localization was on Jun 16.

          • The Talospace Project: Firefox 78 on POWER

            Firefox 78 is released and is running on this Talos II. This version in particular features an updated RegExp engine but is most notable (notorious) for disabling TLS 1.0/1.1 by default (only 1.2/1.3). Unfortunately, because of craziness at $DAYJOB and the lack of a build waterfall or some sort of continuous integration for ppc64le, a build failure slipped through into release but fortunately only in the (optional) tests. The fix is trivial, another compilation bug in the profiler that periodically plagues unsupported platforms, and I have pushed it upstream in bug 1649653. You can either apply that bug to your tree or add ac_add_options –disable-tests to your .mozconfig. Speaking of, as usual, the .mozconfigs we use for debug and optimized builds have been stable since Firefox 67.

      • FSF

        • GNU Projects

          • GNUnet News: GNS Specification Milestone 3/4

            We are happy to announce the completion of the third milestone for the GNS Specification. The third milestone consists of documenting the GNS zone revocation process. As part of this, we have reworked the proof-of-work algorithms in GNUnet also used for GNS revocations.

        • Licensing/Legal

          • As the Computer Misuse Act Turns 30, Critics Say Reform is Desperately Overdue

            The Computer Misuse Act (CMA) turns 30 today. Critics say it has far outlived its purpose, with its Section 1 blanket-criminalising security researchers, and undermining the ability for security teams to conduct threat scanning. That, in turn, is putting businesses at greater risk of attack, they warn.

            Now, an eclectic coalition spanning members from across the UK’s multi-billion tech sector including businesses, think tanks and industry consortia have written to Prime Minister Boris Johnson urging him to reform the legislation — warning that it is no longer fit-for-purpose in today’s world.

          • Motorola Razr and Realme 3/3i Android 10 kernel sources are now available

            Measuring the developer-friendliness of a particular Android OEM is a difficult task. However, their stance on kernel source code release is undoubtedly an important parameter in this regard. Android device makers are obliged to provide the source code – at least upon request – for any Linux kernel binaries that ship on their devices to comply with the requirements of the GNU General Public License (GPL) v2. Not every company goes by the book, though, as a handful of them regularly publish source code for all the updates they roll out.

      • Programming/Development

        • The Future of Linux DApps – Cartesi Launches ‘Descartes’ SDK Documentation Portal

          The Descartes SDK makes it possible for developers to build computationally intensive DApps with all software tools available for a full Linux operating system. DApps preserve full decentralization and the security guarantees of Ethereum.

          Developers and software enthusiasts can access the Documentation Portal immediately through Cartesi’s redesigned website. The portal provides tutorials and the information developers need to get started at coding for Cartesi.

        • AMD/ROCm “AOMP” Compiler Enables OpenMP 5.0 By Default, Preps For More Upstreaming

          AOMP 11.6-2 is out this evening as the final Radeon Open Compute update for H1’2020. This is AMD’s LLVM Clang downstream focused on providing OpenMP offloading to Radeon GPUs.

          AOMP is ROCm’s OpenMP focused compiler based on Clang that launched with ROCm 3.0 at the tail end of last year. Since then AOMP releases have come fairly frequently and AMD has been working to upstream the code where possible/relevant into upstream LLVM/Clang.

        • Some updates: CapTP in progress, Datashards, chiptune experiments, etc

          Hello… just figured I’d give a fairly brief update. Since I wrote my last post I’ve been working hard towards the distributed programming stuff in Goblins.

          In general, this involves implementing a protocol called CapTP, which is fairly obscure… the idea is generally to apply the same “object capability security” concept that Goblins already follows but on a networked protocol level. Probably the most prominent other implementation of CapTP right now is being done by the Agoric folks, captp.js. I’ve been in communication with them… could we achieve interoperability between our implementations? It could be cool, but it’s too early to tell. Anyway it’s one of those technical areas that’s so obscure that I decided to document my progress on the cap-talk mailing list, but that’s becoming the length of a small novel… so I guess, beware before you try to read that whole thing. I’m far enough along where the main things work, but not quite everything (CapTP supports such wild things as distributed garbage collection…!!!!)

          Anyway, in general I don’t think that people get too excited by hearing “backend progress is happening”; I believe that implementing CapTP is even more important than standardizing ActivityPub was in the long run of my life work, but I also am well aware that in general people (including myself!) understand best by seeing an interesting demonstration. So, I do plan another networked demo, akin to the time-travel Terminal Phase demo, but I’m not sure just how fancy it will be (yet). I think I’ll have more things to show on that front in 1-2 months.

        • Top 5 programming languages for systems admins to learn

          You may be asking yourself, why write an article about something you don’t like? There’s a simple answer for that, too. It makes the systems admin portion of my job responsibilities significantly easier. That’s the main reason I work so hard at figuring it out, making sense of it, taking courses, and ultimately putting it to good use. There aren’t enough hours in the day to give everything that personal touch or to repeat the same task over and over across tens of thousands of clients, servers, and mobile devices on- and off-site.

          As a hands-on IT professional, I can be found working on many jobs at once, attending meetings, and providing support to colleagues at any given time. So, that’s why learning at least one programming language is so important: The flexibility of automating tasks (particularly the repetitive ones) frees up time that is better spent addressing matters that require the personal touch.

        • Perl/Raku

        • Python

          • Create various graph and chart for Earning Software with Python

            Hello and welcome back, in this chapter we will continue to develop the previous earning application which shows the shoe and shirt sales figure from the input database.

            If you want to understand what is going on, then do read the previous post about this topic. In this chapter, I am going to improve the previous application by including a combo box that allows the user to select the type of graph or chart he or she wants to view.

            This is the updated version of the user interface program.

          • Creating a Portable Python Environment from Imports

            Python environments provide sandboxes in which packages can be added. Conda helps us deal with the requirements and dependencies of those packages. Occasionally we find ourselves working in a constrained remote machine which can make development challenging. Suppose we wanted to take our exact dev environment on the remote machine and recreate it on our local machine. While conda relieves the package dependency challenge, it can be hard to reproduce the exact same environment.

          • How to Comment in Python

            When writing Python code, it is always a good practice to make your code clean and easily understandable. Organizing the code, giving variables and functions descriptive names are several ways to do this.

            Another way to improve the readability of your code is to use comments. A comment is a human-readable explanation or annotation that is used to explain the code.

          • Mike Driscoll: Python 101 – Launching Subprocesses with Python

            There are times when you are writing an application and you need to run another application. For example, you may need to open Microsoft Notepad on Windows for some reason. Or if you are on Linux, you might want to run grep. Python has support for launching external applications via the subprocess module.

            The subprocess module has been a part of Python since Python 2.4. Before that you needed to use the os module. You will find that the subprocess module is quite capable and straightforward to use.

          • PyCoder’s Weekly: Issue #427 (June 30, 2020)
          • Python 3.8.4rc1

            The Python 3.8 series is the newest major release of the Python programming language, and it contains many new features and optimizations.

          • Python 3.8.4rc1 is now ready for testing

            Assuming no critical problems are found prior to 2020-07-13, the scheduled release date for 3.8.4, no code changes are planned between this release candidate and the final release.
            That being said, please keep in mind that this is a pre-release and as such its main purpose is testing.
            Maintenance releases for the 3.8 series will continue at regular bi-monthly intervals, with 3.8.5 planned for mid-September 2020.


            The Python 3.8 series is the newest feature release of the Python language, and it contains many new features and optimizations. See the “What’s New in Python 3.8” document for more information about features included in the 3.8 series.

            This is the first bugfix release that is considerably smaller than the previous three. There’s 20% less changes at 130 commits than the average of previous three releases. Detailed information about all changes made in version 3.8.4 specifically can be found in its change log.

          • Episode 6 – Where Does the Data Go?

            On this episode, we will learn about storing data and how Django manages data using models.


            A relational database is like a collection of spreadsheets. Each spreadsheet is actually called a table. A table has a set of columns to track different pieces of data. Each row in the table would represent a related group. For instance, imagine we have an employee table for a company. The columns for an employee table might include a first name, last name, and job title. Each row would represent an individual employee.

          • Unicode in Python: Working With Character Encodings

            Python’s Unicode support is strong and robust, but it takes some time to master. There are many ways of encoding text into binary data, and in this course you’ll learn a bit of the history of encodings. You’ll also spend time learning the intricacies of Unicode, UTF-8, and how to use them when programming Python. You’ll practice with multiple examples and see how smooth working with text and binary data in Python can be!

          • PSF GSoC students blogs: Week 4 Check-in
          • PSF GSoC students blogs: Week 5 Checkin!

            This week I worked on the PR.
            The code was not exactly python ready. So I along with my mentors worked on making the code ready for use in python. Giving PUBLISHED access to exposed functions and members and especially, debugging while compiling the code was challenging. I was stuck many times while compiling the code to make it python ready.

        • Rust

    • Standards/Consortia

      • Email Is Not Broken

        A good place to start a discussion about something as polarising as email, is to articulate what email actually is. That way, you guys will hopefully understand where I am coming from right from the start.

  • Leftovers

    • Education

      • NJ Latinx Parents & Students Fight Robert Wood Johnson Plan to Demolish Public School

        In a story Democracy Now! has followed closely, Juan González shares an update on efforts to prevent the demolition of the Lincoln Annex public school in New Brunswick, New Jersey. City officials are trying to proceed with demolishing the public school this summer, in a move that would force 760 students to be bused to other schools for years, and parents and local activists are holding a rally in front of the Lincoln Annex School. “They want to keep the pressure on in the streets and to call on allies … who support public education, who are against gentrification and the abuse of immigrants, to join the rally,” González says.

      • University staff must find their voice, says Murdoch whistleblower

        Dr Schröder-Turk and colleagues Duncan Farrow and Graeme Hocking moved a step beyond that when they criticised Murdoch’s treatment of international students in a May 2019 broadcast of ABC TV’s investigative programme Four Corners.

        They alleged that Murdoch was addressing its budgetary problems by accepting Indian students with inadequate English language capabilities, triggering a wave of cheating by ill-prepared and desperate students and putting their welfare at jeopardy.

        While the three acknowledged that their intervention could jeopardise their careers, it was Dr Schröder-Turk – as the staff-elected member of Murdoch’s senate, the university’s overarching governing body – who paid a particularly heavy price.

    • Health/Nutrition

      • As the Pandemic Rages On, the Right Continues Playing Dumb

        Support independent cartooning: join Sparky’s List—and don’t forget to visit TT’s Emporium of Fun, featuring the new book and plush Sparky!

      • In US and Canada, Migrants Caring for COVID Patients Lack Basic Protections

        Incoherent, inhumane, insulting — that is how Wilner Cayo described the Canadian province of Quebec’s treatment of asylum seekers laboring in the health care sector during the deadly COVID-19 pandemic.

      • John Roberts Is Not Your Friend

        Chief Justice John Roberts sided with the liberal justices on Monday morning to defend abortion rights in a case called June Medical Services v. Russo. That follows his decision to temporarily uphold the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program (DACA) and his decision to uphold gay and transgender rights under the Civil Rights Act earlier this month. Even on the big, end-of-term case in which he did side with conservatives, Roberts ruled that the president could fire the director of the Consumer Protection Financial Bureau, but he did not rule that the entire bureau was unconstitutional, as conservatives hoped he would.

      • “Moment of Elation”: In 1st Big Abortion Case of Trump Era, SCOTUS Strikes Down Strict Louisiana Law

        In the first big ruling on abortion in the Trump era, the Supreme Court has struck down a restrictive abortion law in Louisiana that would have left the state with just one abortion clinic. The 2014 law required doctors who perform abortions to have admitting privileges at a hospital within 30 miles of their clinic, an onerous requirement that often made it impossible for abortion providers to continue to operate. “It was a moment of elation,” says Lakeesha Harris, director of reproductive health and justice at Women with a Vision, a women’s rights organization based in New Orleans. “Many of us have been working years, so this was justice in the making.”

      • Pressed by Sanders, Trump Health Officials Agree Everyone in US Should Be Able to Get Covid-19 Vaccine Regardless of Income

        “We need to manufacture and distribute free, high-quality masks and guarantee free vaccines to everyone in America.”

      • Memories of Pox, Plague, and Pandemics in Tamil Nadu

        It was women from a nearby village who found their beloved chieftain in the battlefield. They had come searching for men from their families. Instead, they found their leader Umaidurai badly wounded and bleeding, but still alive. They lifted him carefully and carried him back to their own village, three miles away.

      • Obamacare Vulnerable

        And now something else wicked this way comes in the midst of a pandemic that has killed upwards of 125,000 Americans: Donald Trump and his cohort of loyal Republicans has asked the Supreme Court to terminate the Affordable Care Act, better known as Obamacare.

      • The Case for Medicare for All Has Grown Stronger Than Ever

        Despite an ever-present flood of misinformation from those making huge profits from the status quo, almost all reputable research and projections about M4A indicate that Americans overall would pay significantly less than we do now.

      • Washington Is Still Putting the Military Before Public Health

        In response to the Covid-19 pandemic, Washington has initiated its largest spending binge in history. In the process, you might assume that the unparalleled spread of the disease would have led to a little rethinking when it came to all the trillions of dollars Congress has given the Pentagon in these years that have in no way made us safer from, or prepared us better to respond to, this predictable threat to American national security. As it happens, though, even if the rest of us remain in danger from the coronavirus, Congress has done a remarkably good job of vaccinating the Department of Defense and the weapons makers that rely on it financially.

      • Pence Masks Up While Trump Keeps Dog-Whistling
      • Fauci Is “Very Concerned” US COVID Cases May “Go up to 100,000 a Day”

        Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and a member of President Donald Trump’s coronavirus task force team, gave a grim assessment of where things could be headed with regard to the total number of new cases of COVID-19 infections seen daily in the United States.

      • Google Pushes Back U.S. Office Reopening Plan After Virus Surge

        All U.S. offices will remain closed until Sept. 7 at the earliest, according to a memo Google sent to employees. In May, Chief Executive Officer Sundar Pichai said the company would cautiously move some workers back in starting July 6.

        Covid-19 is spreading fast again in the U.S., prompting some states to reverse earlier decisions to relax lockdowns. California, where Google is based, reported its second-biggest jump in new cases on Tuesday.

      • Coronavirus: Fauci warns of 100,000 US cases per day

        The surge – which is occurring particularly strongly in southern and western states – has forced at least 16 states to pause or reverse their reopening plans, according to CNN. Florida, Arizona, Texas and California are the four states referenced by Dr Fauci as being most heavily hit currently.

        For some the new measures come over a month after they first began to reopen their economies.

      • EU confirms ban on American travelers as US scrambles to contain coronavirus

        Despite the pressing economic need, though, the EU has judged that allowing US travelers back in is too risky. America’s rate of infection is too high, and the response from the Trump administration has not reassured the experts that this will change anytime soon. The US instituted its own travel ban for visitors from Ireland and the 26-country Schengen common travel area (which includes 22 EU nations) in March.

      • Why Chief Justice Roberts Upheld Abortion Rights

        Thus, today’s decision should have been an open and shut case. Texas’ law was unconstitutional four years ago; Louisiana’s law was virtually identical to that law — it should be unconstitutional as well. But, the addition of the two new justices to the court, and in particular conservative Justice Kavanaugh replacing abortion-rights supporter Justice Anthony Kennedy, made this case a very big deal. To everyone following this issue, this case was going to be the barometer for how the newly conservative Supreme Court would treat abortion. Related Participants hold a sign that reads ‘Home is Here’ outside the US Supreme Court; as part of a demonstration held by immigration advocates and ‘DREAMers’ driving a procession of vehicles around the Supreme Court and US House of Representatives, in Washington, DC, USA, 27 April 2020. The demonstration was held to advocate for ‘Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals’ (DACA) and Temporary Protected Status (TPS) holders in hopes they will be allowed to stay in the country. The Justice Department during the Trump administration has rescinded the expansion of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, but the complete phasing-out of the program has been put on hold by several courts.Immigration advocates and ‘DREAMers’ hold a demonstration during the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic, Washington, USA – 27 Apr 2020

        This morning gave us the complicated answer. A majority of the justices voted to strike down the law based on the 2016 case, however, those five justices did not agree on the rationale. Justice Breyer, who wrote the 2016 decision, authored an opinion for himself and the three other liberals on the court. His opinion was a straightforward application of the 2016 case. He said that this law is no different, and because it also provides no benefits while seriously burdening abortion access, it is unconstitutional, like the Texas law. The Louisiana abortion clinics can remain open, and people seeking abortions in the state will not have to face an even more drastic access landscape.

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • The Senate has questions about DISA’s network security system

          The Senate Armed Services Committee’s version of the National Defense Authorization Act for fiscal year 2021, released June 23, would preclude the department from spending fiscal 2021 funds on the Joint Regional Security Stacks (JRSS) program for use on its Secret Internet Protocol Router Network. JRSS, run by the Defense Information Systems Agency provides cybersecurity services for many DoD components through intrusion detection and prevention, enterprise management, and virtual routing. DISA is tasked with operating and maintaining DoD networks,

          But the JRSS program has a checkered history for being effective. In 2018, the Defense Department’s chief weapons tester suggested that the program be shut down. Other tests have also found several operational and technical troubles. Now defense committees in both legislative chambers are trying to rein in the program.

        • Detroit Police Chief: Facial Recognition Software Misidentifies 96% of the Time

          In a public meeting Monday, Detroit Police Chief James Craig admitted that the technology, developed by a company called DataWorks Plus, almost never brings back a direct match and almost always misidentifies people.

          “If we would use the software only [to identify subjects], we would not solve the case 95-97 percent of the time,” Craig said. “That’s if we relied totally on the software, which would be against our current policy … If we were just to use the technology by itself, to identify someone, I would say 96 percent of the time it would misidentify.”

        • Pseudo-Open Source

          • Openwashing

            • The open organization everyone deserves

              A work environment that encourages the collaborative utilization of everyone’s combined skillset, one in which contributors are intrinsically motivated to do their best work, is something I would wish for everyone. That’s why, over the past year especially, I’ve been cultivating an open organizational culture on my team and across my organization, Axians. Openness is the future, and it begins with individuals. In this article, I’ll explain the mindset shifts I believe any individual leader must make in order to pave the way for an organizational culture of openness.


              This means that in order to get the most out of new technologies, you need to have an open organizational culture in which employees contribute from a place of intrinsic motivation. The current generation of tech employees isn’t drawn to organizations with a strong hierarchical culture. They’re looking for open organizations that encourage and inspire them to excel every single day. They’re looking for the kind of leadership that leaves ample room for individual input and ownership. A successful and future-proof organization demands an open culture and open leadership.

          • Privatisation/Privateering

        • Security

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • The Most Important Privacy Case You’ve Never Heard Of

              One of the most important privacy cases you’ve never heard of is being litigated right now in a federal district court in Maine. ACA v. Frey is a challenge by the nation’s largest broadband Internet access providers to a Maine law that protects the privacy of the state’s broadband Internet users. If the broadband providers prevail, this case could eliminate sector-specific privacy laws across the nation, foreclose national privacy legislation, and have broad implications for broadband regulation generally.

            • Tell Your Senator: Vote No on the EARN IT Act

              This month, Americans are out in the streets, demanding police accountability. But rather than consider reform proposals, a key Senate committee is focused on giving unprecedented powers to law enforcement—including the ability to break into our private messages by creating encryption backdoors.

            • Inside the Invasive, Secretive “Bossware” Tracking Workers

              COVID-19 has pushed millions of people to work from home, and a flock of companies offering software for tracking workers has swooped in to pitch their products to employers across the country.

              The services often sound relatively innocuous. Some vendors bill their tools as “automatic time tracking” or “workplace analytics” software. Others market to companies concerned about data breaches or intellectual property theft. We’ll call these tools, collectively, “bossware.” While aimed at helping employers, bossware puts workers’ privacy and security at risk by logging every click and keystroke, covertly gathering information for lawsuits, and using other spying features that go far beyond what is necessary and proportionate to manage a workforce.

            • Indiana Supreme Court Says Compelled Decryption Of Smartphones Violates The Fifth Amendment

              Two years ago, the Indiana state Appeals Court ruled residents could not be compelled to unlock devices by law enforcement — not at the drop of a warrant. To compel the production of a password, law enforcement needs to have a certain amount of information in hand before it can ask courts to hit uncooperative criminal suspects with contempt charges.

            • Act now to protect encryption and make sure that there is no EARN IT Act passed

              A new anti-encryption bill proposed by Senator Graham will face a key vote this week, and activists are working to make sure that the bill does not pass. The bill is the EARN IT Act – the latest clueless attack on encryption – and there’s a chance that it can be stopped before it ever reaches the Senate floor. This Thursday, the 22 Senators on the Senate Judiciary Committee will vote on whether to not the EARN IT Act pass on to the next stage – and we need to make sure that it doesn’t pass this hurdle. If passed, the EARN IT Act would essentially kill free speech online.

            • Facebook is removing a network of accounts linked to the violent ‘boogaloo’ movement

              Facebook has removed a network of anti-government accounts associated with the fringe “boogaloo” movement after designating the group as a dangerous organization, the company said. The network, which represents a subset of the broader movement, actively planned violence, Facebook said, though it declined to share additional details, saying it did not want to interfere with ongoing law enforcement investigations.

            • Facebook Bans ‘Violent, Antigovernment’ Far-Right Boogaloo Network Amid Ad-Boycott Crisis

              Facebook announced that is banning a far-right antigovernment “boogaloo” group from its platform. The social-media giant, under fire from marketers and critics for not doing enough to stop hate and harassment, said it “is the latest step in our commitment to ban people who proclaim a violent mission from using our platform.”

            • Facebook bans ‘violent’ Boogaloo-linked network

              On Tuesday, Facebook said it was disrupting the “dangerous” group on its platform.

              “It is actively promoting violence against civilians, law enforcement and government officials and institutions,” a statement said. “Members of this network seek to recruit others within the broader boogaloo movement, sharing the same content online and adopting the same offline appearance as others in the movement to do so.”

            • TikTok among 59 Chinese apps banned by India

              “There have been raging concerns on aspects relating to data security and safeguarding the privacy 130 crore Indians. It has been noted recently that such concerns also pose a threat to sovereignty and security of our country. The Ministry of Information Technology has received many complaints from various sources including several reports about misuse of some mobile apps available on Android and IoS platforms for stealing and surreptitiously transmitting users’ data in an unauthorized manner to servers which have locations outside India,” the press release said.

              The press release said the mining of this data posed a threat to India’s sovereignty and integrity and also raised privacy concerns.

            • TikTok caught spying on in-app keystrokes thanks to new iPhone feature

              The popular social media platform was caught red-handed copying text from a user’s clipboard every few seconds, effectively logging their keystrokes without their knowledge.

              Though this was previously done in secret, beta users of Apple’s new iPhone software receive notifications when an app is collecting user data, and found themselves constantly being pinged when typing on TikTok.

            • India bans TikTok

              The Indian Cyber Crime Coordination Centre recommended that the apps should be blocked. The Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-IN) received complaints from citizens regarding security of data and breach of privacy.

            • Facebook Ad Boycott May Be Tip of Iceberg for Zuckerberg’s Social Network

              While social media experts remain uncertain of the long-term damage of the ongoing campaign, one industry consultant told Newsweek it may “tarnish” the brand.

              There are now over 200 companies involved in the “Stop Hate for Profit” campaign that calls on businesses to limit advertising on the Mark Zuckerberg-led platform due to its allegedly lax policies on hate speech, extremism and misinformation.

    • Defence/Aggression

      • As Netanyahu Annexes the West Bank, Where Are the Democrats?

        Tomorrow, July 1, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is expected to move forward with his campaign promise to annex significant sections of West Bank territory. As of this writing, the full extent of Netanyahu’s plan is not known, but he is expected to annex the fertile Jordan Valley as well as several large settlement blocs. Annexation also comprises parts of Donald Trump’s so-called Deal of the Century, which calls for Israel annexing over 30 percent of the West Bank.

      • 60+ Groups Demand Senate Pass Amendment to Slash Pentagon Budget by $74 Billion

        More than 60 progressive advocacy groups representing millions of members across the U.S. are pressuring senators to pass an amendment led by Sen. Bernie Sanders that would cut the proposed Pentagon budget by 10% and redirect the $74 billion in savings toward funding healthcare, education, jobs, and housing in impoverished and neglected communities.

      • Bill Clinton’s Serbian War Atrocities Exposed in New Indictment

        President Bill Clinton’s favorite freedom fighter just got indicted for mass murder, torture, kidnapping, and other crimes against humanity. In 1999, the Clinton administration launched a 78-day bombing campaign that killed up to 1500 civilians in Serbia and Kosovo in what the American media proudly portrayed as a crusade against ethnic bias. That war, like most of the pretenses of U.S. foreign policy, was always a sham.

      • Ro Khanna and Barbara Lee Could Defy “the Madness of Militarism” as Co-Chairs of the Democratic Convention’s Biggest Delegation

        One of the few encouraging surprises in the lead-up to the 2020 Democratic National Convention is that co-chairs of California’s huge delegation will include Representatives Ro Khanna and Barbara Lee. Progressive activism made it possible — winning caucus races to elect strong Bernie Sanders delegates in early June and then organizing a grassroots campaign for Khanna to become chair of the state’s entire delegation.

      • 60+ Groups Demand Senate Pass Sanders Amendment to Slash ‘Out of Control’ Pentagon Budget by $74 Billion

        “The current moment should force us to confront the reality that, for too long, we have invested in the wrong priorities, the wrong tools, and the wrong solutions.”

      • For Politico, ‘Objectivity’ Means Asking Only Arms Industry Sources About an Arms Industry Endorsement

        Journalists often cling to the idea of objectivity as the key to their credibility. New York Times executive editor Dean Baquet, for instance, defends his insistence on not calling Donald Trump a racist, or not calling out right-wing lies, because doing so would supposedly undermine the paper’s claim to objectivity, and therefore the impact of its reporting; his aim, he told a Times reporter in an interview (The Daily, 1/31/20; Press Watch, 1/31/20), is “sophisticated, true objectivity.”

      • Trump approves plan to pull 9,500 troops from Germany

        US President Donald Trump approved a plan to withdraw 9,500 US troops from Germany, a Pentagon spokesperson confirmed Tuesday.

      • Boko Haram suffer defeat as Nigerian troops kill scores of terrorists

        The Defence Headquarters has said that the Air Task Force (ATF) of Operation Lafiya Dole has destroyed Boko Haram’s structures at Warshale in Borno State.

      • Despite disengagement talks, India, China mobilise further in Ladakh, only winter holds hope

        Three things have emerged quite clearly from today’s talks. One, the process to define the crucial ‘how’ of disengagement has made no clear headway. Two, that while the two sides have defined their own details of disengagement, there are key disagreements that have stalled any clear progress in the talks. And three, the token reduction in troops seen at some sites, including Patrol Point 14, is precisely that — token, in the present scheme of things.

        In the absence of any clear take-aways to build on for the next round of talks, it is near certain that any disengagement may only happen by default when winter sets in, and manning positions at those frontiers become impossible to sustain for both sides. In the three months before winter takes over, the two sides will likely continue to talk, though no dramatic de-escalation is expected. For now, top sources say, the level of mobilisation by both sides, especially in the last four days, has emphasised trust deficit and also increased the ‘point of no return’ factor in deployments.

      • Battling the generals: A briefing on Sudan’s transition to democracy

        Sudan’s fragile transitional government is in the spotlight today as a “millions march” protest took to the streets of Khartoum to voice frustration over the lack of progress on promised reforms – nearly a year after mass demonstrations forced the military to share power with civilian leaders.

        The protesters are angry over rocketing inflation and shortages of fuel, electricity, and basic commodities, but are also giving voice to a deeper fear that the military has retained its power and out-maneuvered the civilian-led government of Prime Minister Abdullah Hamdok.

        “The revolution is at risk,” said Hussam Ali, a member of a Khartoum resistance committee – the neighbourhood groups that were at the forefront of last year’s protests. “We feel that the military has arranged its cards and still has greed for power.”

        “I took to the street today because I want to see peace first, and then all criminals who are wanted by the ICC [the International Court] handed over, including [Omar al-] Bashir [Sudan’s three-decade-long former ruler],” said Ahmed Abdulkarem, a protester in Khartoum. “The government’s performance has been very slow and is doing nothing.”

    • Transparency/Investigative Reporting

      • Publisher of news outlet arranged for wife to have unpaid position in Melania Trump’s office: report

        Politico reporters Daniel Lippman and Tina Nguyen revealed Tuesday that Jimmy Finkelstein — the publisher of the news outlet The Hill — has arranged for his wife to have an unpaid position in the office of first lady Melania Trump. This fact, presenting a potentially troubling conflict of interest for a publisher of political news, was not disclosed to readers.

        Lippman and Nguyen report that in 2017, Pamela Gross, Finkelstein’s wife and a former CNN producer, “volunteered to help the new first lady find her footing in the East Wing.” She was described as a “long-time friend of Melania Trump.”

    • Environment

      • Ocean sensitivity may lower carbon emissions cuts

        Ocean sensitivity to atmospheric change is well established. But just how sensitive the oceans are remains a surprise to science.

      • ‘Slam Dunk’ Study Finds Trump EPA’s Move Not to Tighten Air Pollution Standards Would Prematurely Kill 140,000 Americans

        In praising this study as a “slam dunk,” one former EPA air pollution scientist warned that the Trump EPA, which is trying to maintain the current standards, “ignores it at their peril.”

      • ‘Genocidal Negligence’: New Democratic Climate Action Plan Criticized as Woefully Inadequate

        The roadmap “underscores the establishment’s continuing refusal to address this existential crisis with the scale, speed, and intensity required to ensure a future for our next generation.”

      • Why climate change is too important to leave to “green” politics

        Adam Corner, research director at Climate Outreach, a UK NGO, says: “People on the centre-right are not sceptical about climate change, but about environmentalists.” They reject, he says, the “moralising and hubris” that they perceive in the climate conversation.

        The answer, says Corner, is to give climate action a “broad social mandate”, and to make green jobs real and achievable, rather than “a good-news narrative for the liberal elite”.

      • House Democrats just put out the most detailed climate plan in US political history

        All those consultations, hearings, and meetings have culminated in the release of the select committee’s official report and recommendations: “Solving the Climate Crisis: The Congressional action plan for a clean energy economy and a healthy and just America.”

        It is the most detailed and well-thought-out plan for addressing climate change that has ever been a part of US politics — an extraordinary synthesis of expertise from social and scientific fields, written by people deeply familiar with government, the levers of power, and existing policy.

      • Advocate Opens the Door to Awareness

        While working at Maunakea, Kahananui enjoyed sharing the wonders of dark skies with visitors from all over the world. It was jaw-dropping for visitors from urban environments to see more than the moon and a few bright stars in the sky. “You can always open a door for people to be aware that dark skies are part of the environment. It’s half the day,” Kahananui says.

      • Democrats’ New Climate Plan Says Polluters Shouldn’t Receive Immunity From Lawsuits for Climate Impacts

        Some environmental groups criticized the plan for lacking ambition and not directly targeting fossil fuel production. However, the Democrats’ agenda does support a powerful provision for holding fossil fuel companies accountable for their contributions to the disastrously warming planet: Not granting them legal immunity from Congress.

      • Energy

        • How a PG&E Contractor With a Sketchy Past Made Millions After California’s Deadliest Fire

          It was a last-ditch effort to save a scofflaw business. For years, the owners of Bay Area Concrete Recycling had run an unlicensed dump in the city of Hayward, California. Neighbors complained about dust blowing off a massive pile of crushed concrete. A city water pollution expert warned the runoff could be contaminating San Francisco Bay. City planners had fined the company nearly $60,000 and ordered it shut down.

          The company appealed in hopes of winning a permit to operate. But at a city Planning Commission meeting in November 2018, commissioners were unmoved.

        • New NAFTA Trade Deal Deepens Oil and Gas Dependency During Climate Crisis

          Reading between the lines of the 2,000-plus page deal, environmentalists say it is bad news for North America’s climate future. Far from addressing the crisis, the deal provides loopholes for oil, gas, and mining companies to operate across borders, and paves the way for U.S. companies to export even more fracked natural gas across the border into Mexico.

    • Finance

      • #OccupyCityHall: Mayor’s “Tone Deaf” Pledge to Move $1B from NYPD Budget Fails to Satisfy Protesters

        New York police have closed in on peaceful protesters camped outside City Hall who are demanding $1 billion be cut from the police department’s $6 billion budget, as the city approaches its July 1 budget deadline. Mayor Bill de Blasio announced a budget deal that would move $1 billion in NYPD funding in an apparent nod to protesters’ demands, but organizers say they’re not satisfied. “All they’ve really done is shifted money from the NYPD budget over to school safety officers,” says Bianca Cunningham with the #OccupyCityHall encampment, who adds that school safety officers still contribute to a school-to-prison pipeline that disproportionately hurts Black and Brown communities. “It shows that they are completely tone deaf about what this moment is about,” she says.

      • Has the IRS Hit Bottom?

        It’s been almost 10 years since Republicans, riding the Tea Party wave, took control of the House of Representatives and started hacking at the IRS’ enforcement budget. Down it went, some years the cuts were steep, some not, as Republican lawmakers laughed off dire warnings about the consequences of letting tax cheats run free.

        For the past couple years, ProPublica has been cataloging the descent of the IRS. We’ve watched as audits of the rich and the largest corporations have plummeted and become less aggressive, while audits of poor taxpayers have remained comparatively high.

      • Millions of Homeowners Who Need Flood Insurance Don’t Know It — Thanks to FEMA

        When Michael Wilson was in the process of buying a brick bungalow on Chicago’s South Side in October 2018, he thought he had been diligent in researching the flood risk.

        Touring the house’s finished basement, the 43-year-old Wilson saw no outward signs of water damage, and he said the real estate agent had no knowledge of a flood history at the home or while it had been on the market. Wilson also hired a waterproofing specialist to inspect the home for evidence of past flooding or structural concerns.

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • Temper, Temper

        With SCOTUS rulings seen as Trump defeats, Trump answered with a burst of angry tweets. At West Point, he prepared to look like Caesar. Instead his ramp walk showed a fragile geezer. His rage at that will probably never stop. And then his Tulsa rally was a flop. By then the tell-all book released by Bolton Had stoked this anger—hot now, nearly molten. Red-faced with rage? That judgment can’t be made, Since orange close to red’s his normal shade.

      • The Shadow Court Cementing Trump’s Immigration Policy

        Just eight miles from the White House, the Trump administration has quietly opened a new front in its war against immigrants. Inside a 26-story office tower next to a Target in Falls Church, Va., the Board of Immigration Appeals has broken with any pretense of impartiality and appears to be working in lockstep with the administration to close the door on immigrants’ ability to remain in the country.

      • ‘Green Light to Suppress Votes’: Federal Court Reinstates Wisconsin GOP’s Early Voting Restrictions Amid Pandemic

        “They let this case collect dust for three years. And they decide today, four months out from Election Day, that ‘early voting is not a fundamental right’ in the middle of a pandemic. Just outrageous.”

      • Ballots at three Moscow polling stations invalidated after discovery of irregularities involving home voting

        Significant voting irregularities have surfaced at three Moscow polling stations during Russia’s still-ongoing nationwide plebiscite on constitutional amendments (including reforms that could extend Vladimir Putin’s presidency to 2036). Following these reports, Moscow Deputy Election Commissioner Dmitry Reut announced that ballots cast at these stations will be invalidated, though he attributes the aberrations to “human error,” not deliberate acts.

      • ‘A Very Strong Run,’ But Booker Falls Short to Establishment-Backed McGrath in Kentucky Primary

        “McGrath’s campaign collapsed just a bit too late for Booker.”

      • Killer Lines, Killer Cops, and Trump’s Vote-Heist Dress Rehearsal

        The hidden, ugly story of the new Jim Crow tactics tested in the recent primaries—and coming soon to a state near you.

      • How Progressive Victories Blow Up the Conventional Wisdom

        Though the final votes are still being tallied from last week’s Democratic primaries, the outcome is already clear: The progressive movement inside and outside the Democratic Party is, contrary to conventional wisdom, alive and kicking. The millions of people demonstrating in the streets are accompanied by record turnouts in primary elections despite the pandemic. And establishment candidates deaf to the demand for change are courting defeat.

      • Donald Trump Is the ‘Undertaker’ of American Politics

        What’s not to love about a good old-fashioned three-ring circus? The flash and bang of the human cannon, the dancing bears, the ponies prancing in lockstep, the flying trapeze, the tiger tamed, the clown brought down in a pratfall. But circus magic depends upon the art of misdirection. The best acts amaze us not only because they are skilled gymnasts or animal whisperers but also because they have mastered the ability to focus attention—on what they are doing as well as away from it. Perfected distraction is the essence of magic: the sleight of hand, the visual feint, the shell game, the disappearing act, the great escape.

      • ‘America Isolated Under Trump’: Citing Soaring Covid-19 Rate, EU Bar US Travelers

        The decision, said one foreign correspondent, “is certainly an indication about how the rest of the world, particularly Europe, sees the United States right now.”

      • Democracy Chasers in a Badly Injured Nation

        Considering that 43% of Congress is comprised of lawyers and, according to at least one source, a goodly number of that percentage are alcoholics in various stages of recovery — climbing on the wagon, and then falling off, only to be picked up, like any package that mysteriously falls off a truck, by corporate mob figures and re-sold at a discount to a riffraff who deserve them — is it any wonder that they spend their time legislating like ambulance chasers?

      • Iran Seeks Interpol Red Notice on Trump for Soleimani Murder

        Trump unilaterally whacked Soleimani on Iraqi soil without the permission of the Iraqi government, violating the terms under which US troops operate in Iraq as well as committing murder against Soleimani and those with him.

      • Failed State: The Sudden Descent of the United States

        Can making Black Lives Matter rescue a failing state?

      • Progressive Groups Say Biden-Warren Ticket Best Way to Excite Voters and ‘Win the White House’

        “For voters and activists who supported Bernie Sanders in the primary, it’s vital that Biden choose a running mate with a longstanding progressive track record of fighting for the working families of this country.”

      • Trump Was Golfing and Unreachable for 3 Hours After Sharing “White Power” Tweet

        After President Donald Trump shared a video on Twitter this past weekend, showcasing one of his supporters shouting out “white power” toward others protesting against the president, the White House scrambled to get him to take the tweet down, as it had generated a great amount of condemnation online for the racist remark.

      • Lawmakers Dismiss Trump’s Claim That Russian Taliban Bounties Are a “Hoax”

        After a meeting at the White House to discuss intelligence relating to how Russian military operatives were allegedly paying bounties to Taliban militants to kill U.S. troops in Afghanistan last year, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer expressed disagreement with President Donald Trump, who had called reports on the matter a “hoax” in a tweet over the weekend.

      • US claim of ‘Russian Bounty’ plot in Afghanistan is dubious and dangerous
      • Afghanistan Bounties: Pot, Meet Kettle (and Turn Off the Stove!)

        “American intelligence officials have concluded that a Russian military intelligence unit secretly offered bounties to Taliban-linked militants for killing coalition forces in Afghanistan,” claims the New York Times.

      • Trump Is Either Lying or Out of the Loop on Afghanistan. Both Are Bad.

        The corporate media has been straining at its collective leash since the weekend, firing a volley of barks our way about Russian intelligence agents paying the Taliban to kill U.S. soldiers, and my God, did Donald Trump know? The high dudgeon in these reports is unmistakable; one CNN article by Paul Begala calls it “the worst of Trump’s outrages.”

      • This Week in Authoritarian Newspeak
      • Green Party MP Caroline Lucas responds to Boris Johnson’s infrastructure speech
      • TikTok Teens and the Trump Campaign: How Social Media Amplifies Political Activism and Threatens Election Integrity

        If it’s this easy for a group of teens to influence turnout in a campaign rally, how easy would it be for a foreign actor to interfere in the election process? 

      • Trump’s 2020 Election Strategy in 25 Steps

        Memo to America: Beware Trump’s playbook. Spread the truth. Stay vigilant. Fight for our democracy.

      • Tech barons dream of a better world — without the rest of us
      • What anti-racist activists want from Facebook

        The Verge spoke with Jade Magnus Ogunnaike, Color of Change’s deputy senior campaign director, about what the campaign wants from tech companies and how they can get ready for the long haul.

        This interview has been lightly edited for clarity.

      • Four ways the House wants military IT to improve

        A draft version of the annual defense policy bill directs the Department of Defense’s IT offices to describe how its plans to mitigate a series of IT and workforce challenges the department faces.

        The House Armed Services Committee’s subcommittee on intelligence and emerging threats and capabilities released draft legislation June 21 that includes several provisions governing the DoD’s Office of the Chief Information Officer, which is responsible for the Pentagon’s enterprise IT efforts, cyber talent management and several other modernization efforts.

        Here’s a roundup of what the subcommittee wants: [...]

      • How Reddit kicked off a day of bans for Trump and the far right

        The news: Early on Monday, Reddit banned r/The_Donald, a once-notorious pro-Trump forum, for repeated rule-breaking. CEO Steve Huffman announced that it was just one of 2,000 subreddits banned by the site as it institutes rule changes designed to make the platform less accommodating to hateful and abusive communities.

      • Reddit, Acting Against Hate Speech, Bans ‘The_Donald’ Subreddit

        The community or “subreddit,” called “The_Donald,” is home to more than 790,000 users who post memes, viral videos and supportive messages about Mr. Trump. Reddit executives said the group, which has been highly influential in cultivating and stoking Mr. Trump’s online base, had consistently broken its rules by allowing people to target and harass others with hate speech.

      • A foreign journalist’s warning about American authoritarianism

        The decline of democracy in Serbia is a bitter pill for people like Dojčinović to swallow, given that Serbia worked hard to build a real democracy after throwing off first a communist regime and then Slobodan Milosevic’s dictatorship in 2000.

        “We were kind of building democracy for 12 years, and now we are in the process of going backward,” he tells me.

        While America is not yet as bad off as Serbia, Dojčinović sees warning signs that America could go down the same road. In particular, he says, President Trump has the same willingness to abuse his position — cultivating a captive media, enriching himself and his family — that characterizes the current Serbian government.

        For this reason, Dojčinović sees the Serbian experience as a warning for America: A second term could, in his view, prove catastrophic for American democracy. Populist authoritarians undermine democracy in an insidious way, dressing up attacks on the press and courts as what the people truly want. After reelection, they believe they have a freer hand.

    • Censorship/Free Speech

    • Freedom of Information/Freedom of the Press

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • Athletes Are Taking Their Solidarity to the Streets

        On Juneteenth, two young Black men led a demonstration down the streets of Washington, D.C., megaphones in hand, chanting that Black Lives Matter, and that without justice, there would be no peace. This has become a familiar sight in the nation’s capital over the last month, since the police murder of George Floyd.

      • ‘People were being hunted’ Watch a clip from the new ‘HBO’ documentary about LGBTQ evacuations from Russia’s Chechnya

        On June 30, HBO released David France’s new documentary film Welcome to Chechnya to U.S. viewers. It tells the story of Moscow activists David Isteyev and Olga Baranova, as they work to secretly evacuate LGBTQ people from Russia’s Chechnya, taking them to temporary shelters in Moscow or abroad. In order to maintain the anonymity of the film’s main subjects, the director changed their voices, used pseudonyms, and — in a first for a documentary filmmaking — hid their faces with the faces of other people (a kind of deepfake in reverse). The documentary itself was shot on a cheap Sony camera — during some of the filming in Chechnya, the director pretended to be a tourist. To get the most dangerous shots, they used a GoPro or a cellphone camera. The documentary’s world premiere took place at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival. Whether or not the film will be shown in Russia remains unknown. Meduza shares a clip from Welcome to Chechnya, which demonstrates how the activists organized the evacuations.

      • ‘Attacking the Very Foundations’ of Church-State Separation, SCOTUS Delivers ‘Seismic Shock’ Ruling on Religious Schools

        “Today’s ruling is perverse,” Justice Sonia Sotomayor wrote in her dissent.

      • A Student Murdered in Cold Blood and a Kids’ Bike Ride Through Queens, New York

        The US is exceptional! Watching the racist attack against innocent children in Rosedale, an enclave in Queens, New York shook something in me in addition to the revulsion to the rocks and racist slurs. They were looking to ride their bikes through the then-white enclave in Queens on their way to a fast-food restaurant. They spotted a US flag and thought they were headed toward a parade. The video clip from Bill Moyers Journal (“A Racist Attack on Children Was Taped in 1975. We Found Them,” New York Times, June 21, 2020) of the incident awakened something in me from just five years ago that factored into my leaving an adjunct teaching position at a community college in upstate New York.

      • Why Be a ‘Model Minority’ When You Could Dismantle White Supremacy?

        Last month, in the middle of the Covid-19 pandemic, a group of Asian American/Pacific Islander (AAPI) nonprofits in Seattle asked the city to sweep large homeless encampments in the Chinatown–International District neighborhood.

      • Protest In Harmony for Elijah McClain – Until Rioting Cops Teargas His Violin Vigil
      • Anti-Racist Engagement in the Kansas Free State Struggle, 1854-64: Horace Greeley, German 48-ers, and the Civil War Journalism of Karl Marx, 1861-62

        History in the U.S. prior to the Civil War occurred on tumultuous political terrain that is still highly contested academically. One of its most controversial episodes is the struggle for a slavery-free Kansas. This essay[1] will show how crucial aspects of this history have been marginalized and/or repressed in conventional scholarly accounts, and will build an interpretive framework with widened cultural and political scope. This will derive from its close examination of the unique anti-racist engagement of three key social change agents: (1) Horace Greeley’s New York Tribune; (2) German 48er freedom fighters re-located to the Kansas Territory (K.T.) after 1855; and (3) a German 48er journalist working from London for Greeley, Karl Marx. Following the perspective of Frederick Douglass, discussed in more detail below, this essay acknowledges the abiding residual effects of racism among many (perhaps most) of the otherwise politically progressive whites of the day. Nicole Etcheson has recognized this explicit Kansas Free State capitulation to white privilege in her recent history of Bleeding Kansas.[2] My studies however disclose the manner in which a variety of vanguard white radicals stood in alliance with the leading voices of radically egalitarian African Americans, anti-slavery Native Americans, and Kansas German-Americans engaged in the Free State struggle. By focusing on the emancipatory anti-racist political praxis emergent during this epoch, we find that a significant white leadership existed that was radically committed to racial equality.[3]

      • ICE is Leaving Immigrants to Die in Detention, and Retaliating When They Speak Out

        The spread of COVID-19 to immigrant detention facilities poses a mortal danger to everyone who is unjustly detained. For months now advocates, organizers and those detained have urged elected officials and governmental agencies to take affirmative steps to prevent needless deaths and suffering inside immigrant detention facilities.

      • Trump to Black Americans: “You Have to Learn” About “Your History”

        President Donald Trump told Fox & Friends co-host Brian Kilmeade in a Sunday evening special that his message to Black Americans demanding the removal of monuments honoring slave owners is this: “You have to learn” about “your history.”

      • NAACP’s Derrick Johnson on Mississippi’s State Flag, Trump’s White Power Tweet & Boycotting Facebook

        In a historic vote, the Mississippi state Legislature passed a bill to remove the Confederate battle emblem from its state flag, making it the last state to do so, after an ongoing nationwide uprising against racism and police brutality and a mounting pressure campaign in Mississippi. Derrick Johnson, president and CEO of the NAACP, says it has been a “long journey” to change the Mississippi flag. “We’ve had to fight both against the symbol of racial oppression, the revisionist history of racial oppression, and now the next step is to fight against the structural racism that’s embedded in the public policy, not only in the state of Mississippi but across the country,” Johnson says. He also addresses how President Trump shared a video on social media of a Trump supporter chanting “white power,” as well as the growing boycott of Facebook for allowing the spread of hateful and false information on its platform.

      • Mississippi Votes to Remove the Confederate Emblem From Flag

        In a historic vote, the Mississippi state Legislature passed a bill to remove the Confederate battle emblem from its state flag, making it the last state to do so, after an ongoing nationwide uprising against racism and police brutality and a mounting pressure campaign in Mississippi. Derrick Johnson, president and CEO of the NAACP, says it has been a “long journey” to change the Mississippi flag. “We’ve had to fight both against the symbol of racial oppression, the revisionist history of racial oppression, and now the next step is to fight against the structural racism that’s embedded in the public policy, not only in the state of Mississippi but across the country,” Johnson says. He also addresses how President Trump shared a video on social media of a Trump supporter chanting “white power,” as well as the growing boycott of Facebook for allowing the spread of hateful and false information on its platform.

      • Can Making Black Lives Matter Rescue a Failing State?

        You know that feeling when you trip on the street and instantly sense that you’re about to crash hard and there’s no way to prevent it? As gravity has its way with you, all you can do is watch yourself going down. Yeah, that feeling.

      • Confronting Prejudice Isn’t Enough. We Must Eradicate the White Racial Frame.

        The brutal enslavement of Black people lasted for a full 60 percent of this country’s colonialist history.

      • How North Carolina Transformed Itself Into the Worst State to Be Unemployed

        By March, when the coronavirus began accelerating through the United States, Shawn Hill-Watkins had been working as a cashier at a Food Lion supermarket in High Point, North Carolina, for seven months, taking three buses to work and back each day. She couldn’t afford the groceries she was ringing up for customers, but she had always been outgoing and knew how to keep the mood upbeat. Older regulars at the market sought out her line. They knew her by the colorful silk flowers she had sewn for herself, which she would wear behind her ear.

        Hill-Watkins is 50, with six children and nine grandchildren. For years she’s lived around Virginia and in Philadelphia, making ends meet as a hairdresser, a seamstress and a house cleaner. Last June she came to North Carolina with her youngest son, Devan, after one of her daughters, who was in an abusive relationship, called her for help. Her daughter later left, but Hill-Watkins decided to remain. She had gotten the grocery job and eventually moved into a room with a kitchenette in an extended stay hotel just off Interstate 40 in Greensboro. Devan, who is 15, had made friends on a local football team. Hill-Watkins had been running around trying to help her children for two decades, she said, “and I felt like I couldn’t run with them anymore.”

      • Why Are Federal Jurists Cheering on Voter Suppression in Wisconsin?

        That’s a radical reinterpretation of the law. “The Supreme Court has never held that partisan animus provides a legitimate basis for discriminatory voting rules,” notes election law expert Rick Hasen, a professor of political science and law at the University of California, Irvine. Yet as Hasen points out, Easterbrook is suggesting, “in a very troubling way, that making it harder to vote on the basis of party is perfectly acceptable.”

        This is judicial activism writ large, and it is exceptionally dangerous, as it effectively invites Republican legislators in Wisconsin and elsewhere to ponder even more aggressive assaults on voting rights. “The judges take the Supreme Court’s redistricting decision and use it to argue that, essentially, lawmakers can change any election law for purposes of partisan advantage, as long as they’re not explicitly talking about racial (or other barred) discrimination while they do it,” explains Democratic Party of Wisconsin chair Ben Wikler. “The truth is that because one party has so relentlessly weaponized racism, voting is now highly predicted by race—and so it’s possible to suppress the vote of African-Americans under the guise of suppressing Democrats. This opens the door to making that legal.”

      • Video appears to show Detroit police car driving into protesters

        Ketner said the protests had been peaceful until four cars blocked the protesters’ route, prompting them to surround the vehicles until officers cleared the way.

        “Right as we passed all four, the driver turned and started advancing toward us,” Ketner told CNN Monday. “I can’t explain how or why he thought it was a good idea, but that’s what he decided to do. There were other vehicles farther down on Verner (Highway) and if they tried to claim they did it (to) get past us, they could have dispatched another officer (down the road).”

        Ketner said police did not instruct the protesters to move out of the way before the vehicle accelerated into the crowd.

      • California Police Are Using Copyright to Hide Surveillance Documents

        California police are refusing to release documents about the surveillance technology it uses, despite a new law that requires their release.

        On January 1, SB 978 went into effect, which requires the Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) to “conspicuously” publish all law enforcement agency training materials. The agency has said that it will not comply on copyright grounds.

        Any attempt to download training materials concerning facial recognition technology or automated license plate readers (ALPRs), as well as materials relating to courses on the use of force, lead to a Word document that reads “The course presented has claimed copyright for the expanded course online.”

      • Indonesian Christian convert from Islam begs Muslim relatives to return snatched children

        A Barnabas contact said many Acehnese Muslim-background believers have suffered similar treatment to Fitri. “In Aceh, there is no freedom of religion and, since sharia law was enacted a few years ago, the number of Christians and churches is decreasing in the province,” he said. “Many churches have been destroyed or closed down and many Christians were persecuted.”

        Indonesia, home to the world’s largest Muslim population, has seen a rise in hard-line Islamic ideology in recent years. A generation ago, Muslims and Christians lived peaceably as equals in accordance with the state-promoted philosophy of religious tolerance and national unity known as “Pancasila”.

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

      • The Week in Internet News: Google to Pay Some News Publishers

        News isn’t free: Google has announced it will pay some news publishers in a “new news experience” it is rolling out later this year, TechCrunch reports. News outlets in Germany, Australia, and Brazil are among the first group of publishers that have signed on. The goal is to “help participating publishers monetize their content through an enhanced storytelling experience that lets people go deeper into more complex stories, stay informed and be exposed to a world of different issues and interests,” Google says.

      • New Bill Would Kill State Laws Blocking Broadband Competition

        For years we’ve noted how the United States has spent billions on broadband subsidies, tax breaks, and regulatory favors for major ISPs, only to receive half-completed networks. That’s largely thanks to lobbyists and the captured regulators who love them, resulting in a government that doesn’t do a great job tracking where subsidy money is spent, refuses to seriously police fraud, still doesn’t really know where broadband is or isn’t available, and routinely approves terrible industry consolidating mergers.

    • Monopolies

      • Patents

        • Italian Court of Appeal awards EUR 1,5 mio damages in pharma patent case for 40 days infringement

          Whilst the Italian Courts are not famous for awarding substantial damages in IP cases, a recent decision of the Rome Court of Appeal seems to have gone in the opposite direction, albeit taking a very long time to deliver the result. In this article, we report on a case started in 2012, which came to its conclusion in 2020 with a second instance judgment that awarded the holder of a significant pharmaceutical patent, EUR 1.5 mio damages approximately to compensate an infringement that lasted 40 days.

          The script is not unheard of, and revolves around a generic company that chooses to enter prematurely the market of an established originator product approaching the sunset of patent protection.

          In December 2012, Israeli generic player Teva decided to launch “at risk” in Italy its generic version of Montelukast, a leukotriene antagonist and a major respiratory medicine belonging to US based Merck Sharp & Dohme. More particularly, at the time of launch, the remaining life of MSD’s patent EP ‘480717, as extended by Italian supplementary protection certificate CPC-UB99CC647, protecting medicine Singulair (Montelukast) was only 40 days. Teva’s strategy arguably rested on the assumption that the approaching Christmas season would have hindered in practice the putting in place of an interlocutory injunction by MSD timely enough before the expiry of SPC ‘647 in February 2013. Which proved to be the case.


          However, whilst the IQVIA data are accepted by the Court of Appeal as evidence of the damage caused by the reduction of the originator medicine’s reimbursed price, it remains unexplained why it felt unable to accept the same IQVIA data as evidence of the damage caused by the loss of volumes of MSD’s Singulair replaced by Teva’s generic. In this respect, MSD had moreover argued in first instance that the loss of margins on lost volumes should at least have been compensated by the virtual royalty method, and had presented along with the submissions of its own economic expert reference rates extracted by industry data banks and independent studies. However, the Court of Appeal does not accept that evidence either, and ends up awarding to MSD an otherwise unexplained lump sum compensation “in fairness” of EUR 100k for loss of volumes.

          In partial contradiction with its own premises, the Court of Appeal dismisses MSD’s damages claim for partial loss of depreciations, saying that it was implausible that any R&D investments should remain unamortized during the last 40 days of life of supplementary protection, which by definition went beyond the original term of the basic patent. The Court apparently fails to see that depreciation takes places by a linear arithmetic function, spreading the cost evenly across the entire useful life of the asset.

        • Software Patents

          • EFF Successfully Defends Users’ Right to Challenge Patents and Still Recover Legal Fees

            When individuals and companies are wrongly accused of patent infringement, they should be encouraged to stand up and defend themselves. When they win, the public does too. While the patent owner loses revenue, the rest of society gets greater access to knowledge, product choice, and space for innovation. This is especially true when defendants win by proving the patent asserted against them is invalid. In such cases, the patent gets cancelled, and the risk of wrongful threats against others vanishes.

            The need to encourage parties to pursue meritorious defenses, is partly why patent law gives judges the power to force losers to pay a winner’s legal fees in “exceptional” patent cases. The fee-shifting allowed in patent cases is especially important because there are so many invalid patents in the possession of patent trolls, which are entities that exploit the exorbitant costs of litigating in federal court to scare defendants into paid settlements. When patent trolls abuse the litigation system, judges have to make sure that they pay a price. That’s why the selective fee-shifting that happens in patent cases is so important.

          • Baidu Joins Linux Patent Consortium ‘Open Invention Network’ [Ed: OIN basically legitimises licensing or cross-licensing software patents dressed up as "Hey Hi"]

            Baidu, the largest Chinese language search engine and a leading artificial intelligence (AI) company has joined Open Invention Network (OIN), the largest patent non-aggression community in the world.

            As an active supporter of open source and an important contributor of global open source technology, Baidu said it is committed to promoting the rapid development of AI through an open source platform and facilitating industrial transformation.

            OIN’s community practices patent non-aggression in core Linux and adjacent open source technologies by cross-licensing Linux System patents to one another royalty-free. Similarly, OIN licenses its patents royalty-free to organizations that agree not to assert their patents against the Linux System.

          • Quartz Auto Technologies patent challenged as likely invalid

            On June 30, 2020, Unified filed a petition for inter partes review (IPR) against U.S. Patent 7,370,085, owned and asserted by Quartz Auto Technologies, LLC, an NPE. The ‘085 patent is generally directed to personal information management systems that track a user’s locations and activities. The patent is currently being asserted against Uber and Lyft for their rider/passenger applications.

      • Trademarks

        • Prosecco People Move On From Bullying Puns Over Trademark To Bullying Portmanteau Over Trademark

          Back in 2018, we wrote about the Consorzio di Tutela della Denominazione di Origine Controllata Prosecco, heretofore called only “The Prosecco People” to save my brain, opposing the trademark for a pet treats company over its branded doggy drink “Pawsecco.” The EU IPO, in one of the most bizarre trademark rulings I’ve ever seen, acknowledged that there was almost no chance for any actual customer confusion over the use of “Pawsecco”, but found in favor of The Prosecco People anyway, strictly because Prosecco was a well-known thing, and Woof and Brew’s pun was referencing a well-known thing. That is simply not the purpose of trademark law. The entire idea is that the public shouldn’t be confused in a given market of goods as to the origin of competing products. Pet drinks and Italian knockoffs of champagne seem fairly distinct in the marketplace.

        • Supreme Court rules Booking.com can trademark name

          The decision rejects a sweeping argument pushed by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) that the combination of a generic term and “.com” cannot be trademarked. Intellectual property law in the U.S. doesn’t allow companies to trademark generic terms.

          The court said in an 8-1 decision that certain combinations of two generic terms — in this case, “booking” and the domain name “.com” — are eligible for trademarking.

        • United States Patent and Trademark Office v. Booking.com B.V. (2020)

          Today, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a much-anticipated opinion in a trademark case directed to what it means for a trademark to be generic, and hence not subject to registration, in United States Patent and Trademark Office v. Booking.com B.V.[1] The question presented to the Court was whether an online business’s addition of a generic top-level domain (i.e., “.com”) to an otherwise generic term can create a protectable trademark.[2] The Court declined to impose a per se rule on this question, as urged by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”), and instead held that “[w]hether any given ‘generic.com’ term is generic . . . depends on whether consumers in fact perceive that term as the name of a class or, instead, as a term capable of distinguishing among members of the class.”[3] Here, lower court determinations established that Booking.com was not generic.[4]


          In doing so, the Court appeared to reject the USPTO’s position that the primary significance test should be confined to potential cancellation of registered marks (as the test is found in that particular section of the Lanham Act).

          In any case, the Court found that consumer perception prevails, and “whether ‘Booking.com’ is generic turns simply on whether that term, taken as a whole, signifies to consumers the class of online hotel-reservation services.”[18] In finding that it does not, the Court noted that we would not expect consumers “to understand Travelocity—another such service—to be a ‘Booking.com’” or that “a consumer, searching for a trusted source of online hotel-reservation services, could ask a frequent traveler to name her favorite ‘Booking.com’ provider.”[19] “Because ‘Booking.com’ is not a generic name to consumers, it is not generic.”[20]

          The Court went on to refute a number of the USPTO’s arguments, including the comprehensive, per se rule urged by the USPTO because it is inconsistent with the USPTO’s own past practices of allowing registration of other “generic.com” marks.

          In doing so, the Court found one of main cases cited by the USPTO, Goodyear’s India Rubber Glove Mfg. Co. v. Goodyear Rubber Co., 128 U.S. 598 (1888), inapplicable to Booking.com. The USPTO argued that Goodyear’s supported the position that “a generic corporate designation added to a generic term does not confer trademark eligibility.”[21]

        • Breaking: US Supreme Court holds that “generic.com” marks are not necessarily generic – USPTO v. Booking.com

          This morning, the US Supreme Court issued a long-awaited decision regarding the “Booking.com” service mark. In United States Patent and Trademark Office v. Booking.com, the Court held that a mark consisting of a term that is generic for the class of goods or services offered and “.com” is not necessarily generic. Rather, as in this case, if consumers do not perceive the mark as generic for the class, the mark may be distinctive and thus registrable.

          Justice Ginsburg authored the opinion of the Court, which eight justices joined. The lone dissent came from Justice Breyer; additionally, Justice Sotomayor wrote a separate concurring opinion.

        • generic.com

          Today, the Supreme Court ruled (8-1) that merely adding “.com” to a generic term may allow the combination to be protected as a non-generic trademark. In other words, adding “.com” can confer meaning to the consuming public, and thus is not the same as adding “company” or “inc,” which does not confer meaning. That was really the linguistic question in the case. Case law has long held that “Booking, Inc.” is really “Booking.” So, is “Booking.com” also “Booking”? Or is it “Booking.com”?

          As a reminder, a mark is generic when it describes what the product is, and not who makes the product. So, Booking.com would refer to a single company (who) that makes bookings, and not to just any booking company (what). A generic term might be lawyer – it refers to what (legal services) and not to who (there are many lawyers). As the Court puts it, Travelocity is a booking company, but is it a booking.com company?

          I signed on to an amicus brief supporting Booking.com, and I’ll tell a story why (and why I so keenly followed this case). Way back in the beginning of the commercial internet, my firm registered the domain computerlaw.com. This was a big deal – making it work for email required complicated email gateways, etc. I hadn’t even gone to law school yet, and I was in charge of setting it up. Connectivity looked a lot different for a small firm in 1994 than it does now.

        • Patent Law and Booking.Com: as a whole or by parts

          Patent scholars and attorneys will recognize the battle in https://t.co/7wn2gtAbSC between the majority (Justice Ginsburg) and dissent (Justice Breyer) looks much the same to the debate over patentable subject matter.

        • “Noescco” appeal goes flat in the High Court

          Uncork the bottles – a resounding victory for the Prosecco producers in Les Grands Chais de France SAS v Consorzio di Tutela della Denominazione di Origine Controllata Prosecco [2020] EWHC 1633 (Ch), an appeal from the UK Intellectual Property Office which was heard in the High Court by Mr Justice Nugee.


          The section 3(4) ground of opposition was based on Article 103(2)(b) of the Regulation, which protects a PDO against any “misuse, imitation or evocation”.

          The Appellant’s position was essentially that the term “Nosecco” was coined to refer to the non-alcoholic nature of its goods. The Appellant then argued (somewhat inconsistently) that “-secco” means “dry” in Italian and “sec” is a common word used in the wine industry to denote a “dry” (i.e. not sweet) taste, and therefore the public would understand “Nosecco” to mean “not dry”. To the extent that the public were to perceive “Nosecco”as referring to Prosecco, this would indicate an absence of Prosecco i.e. “Noescco” is a parody of (or a witty play on) Prosecco, and a name that points away from Prosecco.

          These arguments, run at first instance, were problematic because they suggest that “Noescco” evokes Prosecco at the very least, and the case law strongly suggests that evocation (with nothing more) is enough. All that is needed is a link in the mind of the public; confusion/deception are not necessary.

        • Are Patent and Trademark Deadlines Extended Due To COVID-19? (UPDATED)

          As the COVID-19 pandemic progresses, patent offices worldwide are taking steps to minimize negative impacts that patent and trademark filers may suffer.

          Many offices have asked their employees to work from home, potentially causing delays. Most or all offices, including the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and European Patent Office (EPO), are conducting oral proceedings via telephone or videoconferencing.

      • Copyrights


Links 30/6/2020: OpenSUSE Leap 15.2, 4MLinux 34.0 Beta and IPFire 2.25 – Core Update 146

Posted in News Roundup at 1:24 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Desktop/Laptop

    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • [S5 TEASER] Command Line Heroes: Season 5 Animated Teaser
      • [S5 TRAILER] Command Line Heroes: Season 5 Audio Trailer
      • LHS Episode #354: QSO Today Ham Expo Deep Dive

        Hello and welcome to the 354th episode of Linux in the Ham Shack. In this episode, we talk with Eric Guth, 4Z1UG, of the QSO Today podcast. With just the spark of an idea, he has created the first large-scale virtual ham fest. In a COVID-19 world where in-person events are cancelled all over the place, particularly Hamvention, Huntsville and more, this may usher in a new era of virtual ham radio gatherings. We dive into every aspect of the Expo from inception to participation to technical details. Thanks for listening and have a great week. Hope to see you at the Expo!

      • 2020-06-29 | Linux Headlines

        Ubuntu gains an unofficial rolling release version, Mastercard joins the chorus of voices warning Magento store owners to update, and two more browsers join the bandwagon on certificate lifetime shortening.

    • Kernel Space

      • Linux 5.9 Likely To See USB4 Support Improvements

        Linux 5.6 brought initial USB4 support that primarily was starting things off by basing things off the existing Thunderbolt 3 support in the kernel for which this latest USB standard is based. For the Linux 5.9 kernel later this summer it’s looking like there will be further work on getting Linux’s USB4 support into good shape ahead of hardware appearing in the months ahead.

        Via the Thunderbolt bleeding-edge branch has been a number of USB4 patches building up over the past week. Intel’s Mika Westerberg, Kranthi Kuntala, and Rajmohan Mani have been working on these latest USB4 additions.

      • Linux 5.8 Bringing Some Performance Boosts For AMD Renoir Graphics

        Over the weekend I began running some benchmarks of the Linux 5.8 development kernel on the Lenovo Flex 5 laptop with Ryzen 5 4500U. One of the standouts so far for from this Linux 5.8 testing compared to the stable 5.6/5.7 kernel series is better Radeon graphics performance with the Renoir laptop.

      • Linus Torvalds on the future of Linux kernel developers and development

        The illustrious pair started with Hohndel asking about the large size of the recent Linux kernel 5.8 initial release. Hohndel wondered if it might have been so big because developers were staying home thanks to the coronavirus. Torvalds, who always worked at home, said, “I suspect 5.8 might be [so large] because of people staying inside but it might also be, it’s just happened that several different groups ended up coming at roughly the same time, with new features in 5.8.”

        While COVID-19 has slowed down many technologies, while speeding up other tech developments, it hasn’t affected Linux development much at all. “None of my co-developers have been hugely impacted either. I was worried for a while because one of our developers was offline for a month or two. … [But,] it turned out that it was just RSI [repetitive strain injury], and RSI is kind of an occupational hazard to deal with.” He added. “One of the things that is so interesting about the Linux community is how much it has always been email-based and remote, how rarely we get together in person.”

        In any case, Torvalds trusts this new build. Indeed, he ran his end of the videoconference from his new developer machine running the first release candidate of 5.8.

      • Shoe Carnival Increases Security and Availability with Oracle Ksplice

        In this article, we will discuss how Shoe Carnival increased their IT systems security and availability using Oracle Ksplice.

        Shoe Carnival, Inc. is one of the nation’s largest family footwear retailers, offering a broad assortment of moderately priced dress, casual and athletic footwear for men, women and children with emphasis on national name brands. The company operates 390 stores in 35 states and Puerto Rico, and offers online shopping.

        In keeping with the carnival spirit of rewarding surprises, Shoe Carnival offers their customers chances to win various coupons and discounts. Customers can spontaneously win while spinning the carnival wheel in the store or redeeming an a promotional offer. These specials encourage customers to make a purchase. Customers are also eligible to earn loyalty rewards via a “Shoe Perks” membership. This loyalty program allows them to earn points with each purchase and receive exclusive offers. Members can redeem points and awards either when in store or shopping online.

      • Graphics Stack

        • Zink GL-On-Vulkan Driver Approaching OpenGL 3.1 Support

          Zink is the generic OpenGL over Vulkan driver that has been in development as part of Mesa’s Gallium3D code. It was just earlier this month that Zink achieved OpenGL 3.0 support and now it looks like OpenGL 3.1 will soon be flipped on.

          Thanks to relying upon Gallium3D, Zink has already much of OpenGL 3.1 support in place for a while but has been blocked by NV_primitive_restart and ARB_uniform_buffer_object. These remaining extensions should be wrapped up soon.

        • Opengl 3.1

          Not really, but I didn’t get around to blogging on Friday because I was working until pretty late on something that’s Kind Of A Big Deal.

          Not really, but it’s probably more interesting than my posts about unhandled ALUs.

        • AMD Publishes AMDGPU UVD Firmware For Southern Islands

          Recently AMD posted UVD video decode support for GCN 1.0 with the AMDGPU driver, one of the long holdouts for letting the AMDGPU DRM driver approach feature parity with the longstanding Radeon DRM driver that is the default for GCN 1.0/1.1 era GPUs. That AMDGPU UVD GCN 1.0 decode support is going into the Linux 5.9 kernel later this summer after years ago Radeon driver developers largely dismissed the efforts of porting the UVD decode capability for these original GCN graphics cards over to AMDGPU.

          One of the reasons that this wasn’t possible previously was AMD hadn’t published the necessary firmware binaries for GCN 1.0 UVD that were compatible with the AMDGPU driver and just for the older Radeon DRM driver. But hitting linux-firmware.git today are those firmware files.

    • Benchmarks

      • Benchmarking The Performance Overhead To Linux’s Proposed FGKASLR Security Feature

        One of the security improvements being worked on in recent months by Intel’s open-source team has been FGKASLR. But how is the performance overhead compared to just traditional KASLR? Here are benchmarks looking at the performance impact of FGKASLR on top, just KASLR, and then no address space layout randomization.

        FGKASLR is being worked on by Intel for improving Linux security with this Function Granular Kernel Address Space Layout Randomization. Rather than just randomizing the position in memory of the kernel, this FGKASLR patch series enables randomization at the function-level and used on top of KASLR. The reordering of kernel functions is done in memory at boot time. FGKASLR isn’t anything specific to Intel CPUs but a common security feature that just happens to be worked on by Intel’s large open-source team as one of the leading organizations contributing to the Linux kernel.

    • Applications

      • Cadmus is a new Linux UI for managing microphone noise suppression

        Are your voice chat friends getting bothered by your fancy new loud mechanical keyboard? Or perhaps you’re doing an audio recording and need everything in the background to shutup – enter Cadmus.

        I’m sure many of you have been there, getting distracted while playing an online game because one of your crew sounds like an elephant jumping on a keyboard while they furiously press WASD or angrily type in the chat. Noise suppression helps with anything remotely like that.

        On Windows there’s a lot of solutions, on Linux there’s not so much that’s actually user friendly. Cadmus aims to hopefully help a little there, giving Linux users a very simply notification icon UI to enable noise supression – using the PulseAudio Noise Supression Plugin from werman.

      • The 13 Best Music Players for Ubuntu & Linux Mint

        We all love listening to music. Well, at least most of us do. Whether it’s just listening to cool ambient music as we work on our PC or unwinding after a long day’s work, music plays a crucial role in our everyday lives.

        In this article, we have put together a list of some of the most popular music players that you can install on your system and play your favorite music as you blow off some steam.

      • Firebird Project is happy to announce general availability of Firebird 3.0.6

        Firebird Project is happy to announce general availability of Firebird 3.0.6 — the 6th point release in the Firebird 3.0 series.

        This sub-release offers many bug fixes and also adds a few improvements, please refer to the Release Notes for the full list of changes.

      • MIXXX: powerful DJ-ing software

        Mixxx is a powerful and free (open source) DJ program which allows you perform a live set with up to 4 virtual decks and optionally stream it to a broadcasting server. Common effects like echo, flanger, reverb, bitcrusher are available, and through its LV2 plugin interface you can use many more external effects to spice up your set.
        Its master sync feature ensures that the music primed in all your decks stays locked to the beat. You can control pitch and key, or loop a stretch of audio. Quantize your cues and loops so that they start right on the beat all the time. And so on – and all of that with an attractive skinnable user interface.

        You can plug in a MIDI controller and map its buttons/knobs/sliders to operate the Mixxx user interface so that you do not have to use your computer’s mouse & keyboard to cue, mangle and cross-fade the audio. There’s actually a lot of presets you can load for the most well-known MIDI controllers like the Novation LaunchPad Mini.

        If the JACK daemon is running you can connect Mixxx to it, but it will perform just fine with ALSA as well.

    • Painless file extraction on Linux
    • How to disable hardware acceleration Chrome
    • Create and Run Your First Bash Shell Script
    • How To Install Apache Solr 8.5 on Ubuntu 20.04
    • How to Install and Configure Memcached on Ubuntu Linux
    • How to Restart Networking on Ubuntu
    • How to install Chrome and Chromium Browser on Pop!_OS
    • Emacs download and installation on Ubuntu
    • How To Install JFrog Artifactory on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS
    • How To Setup Virtual Host Apache on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS
    • How to Install IDLE Python IDE on Debian 10
    • How to migrate helm v2 to helm v3
    • How to create a Service in Kubernetes
    • How to Use pandoc to Convert Files on the Linux Command Line
    • How to Install Puddletag (Python3, Qt5 Port) in Ubuntu 20.04
    • How to Install Nginx, MySQL & PHP (LEMP) on Ubuntu 20.04
    • Connect GNOME File Manager or Windows Explorer to an ISPConfig 3 website
    • Ubuntu CPU Monitor
    • How to Specify Time Limit for a Sudo Session in Ubuntu 20.04 LTS
    • How to Install and Use Curl on Ubuntu 20.04
    • How to Secure Nginx with Let’s Encrypt on Ubuntu 16.10
    • How to install League of Legends on Linux Mint 20
    • Tiling Window Management Is Objectively Better Than The Rest
    • Vulnerability scanning in disconnected environments
  • Games

    • Best offline games for Android

      Many Android games rely on an internet connection. Some of them need to download data from the server, like Clash of Clans, or need DRM protection, like most Final Fantasy games. Anyway,you may find that most games require a web connection just for the game to run. But that is not true. Not everyone has the luxury of always having a stable internet connection, so we selected the top Android games offline, that is, you would not require a 4G or a Wi-Fi connection to play them.

      In fact, the Android app store itself, Google Play, has a category called ” Offline games “, launched in 2014. This category offers free and paid games that do not require Internet access. The category is updated frequently, always bringing new games . So if you want to stay up to date, you might want to take a look at this category every now and then.

    • 7 Days to Die ‘Alpha 19 Experimental’ is out with HD Zombies

      The Fun Pimps are working towards another huge upgrade for the survival game 7 Days to Die, with a new experimental build out now to try.

      It’s a massive upgrade again to many areas of the game, and it does sound quite exciting. One of the best survival games available on Linux, easily. Alpha 19 can be tried out in the “latest_experimental” Beta branch on Steam. Keep in mind it will be unstable since it’s not yet ready for everyone. With that in mind though, it’s still fun to try. Some of what’s new includes: Linear Color Space Lighting, Food and Water Bars in the UI, New Survival System & Critical Injuries, Interactive Loading Screen and even HD Characters, like my friend pictured below while exploring myself earlier.

    • Bounty Battle the ‘ultimate indie fighting game’ releasing July 23

      Featuring an all-star fighting cast from various indie games, the fighting game Bounty Battle is due to release on July 23.

      Inspired by the likes of Skullgirls and Street Fighter, it’s a multiplayer 2D fighter that gives you access to over 20 characters taken from games like Guacamelee!, Darkest Dungeon, Dead Cells, Owlboy and more. It was funded on Fig back in 2017, with help from 334 backers and a bunch of money from Fig directly too.

      Just recently, they confirmed in an announcement that it’s due to launch on July 23. In the comments, they mentioned the Linux version should be launching at the same time too.

    • First-person melee combat expands in Paint the Town Red

      The highly rated first-person melee combat game Paint the Town Red is violent, bloody and getting bigger.

      Released into Early Access back in 2015, this ultra-violent game of punching and kicking has continued to expand with new content and game modes with it going on to receive a very high user rating on Steam. As bloody as it is, Paint the Town Red isn’t supposed to be taken seriously at all with it’s blocky voxel-style.

      Over the last few months it’s had some pretty huge updates which includes a 2-4 player cooperative multiplayer addition to Beneath, the rogue-like campaign mode. There’s also now an Endless Mode for the Arena so you can keep fighting for as long as you can survive. Together the new modes add quite a bit of extra gameplay.

    • Godot 4.0 will get SDF based real-time global illumination

      While we already briefly mentioned SDF based real-time global illumination was coming in our post on the recent Godot Engine 3.2.2 release, Godot’s Juan Linietsky has now explained the upcoming feature in more detail.

      Godot 4.0 is the massive rendering overhaul that’s still a while away with Vulkan support, and over time new and more advanced 3D rendering features are making it in. SDFGI (Signed Distance Field Global Illumination), the latest mentioned addition, is a seriously fancy lighting technique that provides a form of real-time dynamic lighting. They said it’s something akin to a dynamic real-time lightmap but it doesn’t require unwrapping, nor does it use textures and it doesn’t require Ray Tracing either – all while keeping performance in check.

    • OpenRA working to support C&C Remastered assets, Tiberian Sun work continues

      The team behind OpenRA have confirmed their continued commitment to working on the game engine to support Tiberian Dawn, Red Alert and Dune 2000 on modern platforms.

      Since the release of the Command & Conquer Remastered Collection, plus the open source code along with it from EA, people have questioned if OpenRA will continue and the good news is that it will. Not only that, it’s going to get better than ever and work is ongoing.

      Thanks to the open source release of the Command & Conquer Remastered Collection code, the OpenRA team have already begun studying it and mentioned that while OpenRA takes things in a different and more modern direction, they have already been able to learn a few things.

    • Papercraft styled tactical RPG ‘Wildermyth’ adds Legacy campaigns

      Wildermyth is a seriously great in-development character-driven tactical RPG, with a fantastic papercraft style and it just got a great boost to the story.

      It’s a little bit unusual actually. Combining the story-telling from classic tabletop D&D RPGs, with the combat of an XCOM-like with turn-based tactical options aplenty. Together with the style it’s wonderful and I’m always happy to load it up for another run, now even more so. In Wildermyth, if you manage to complete one of the story campaigns, you get to promote one or more characters into a special Legacy pool, to find and recruit them during Legacy campaigns.

    • Sweet settlement building game The Colonists gets random maps

      Inspired in parts by The Settlers and Anno, The Colonists is a settlement building game about little robots trying to become a bit more human.

      “You take control of a team of self-replicating robots built to simulate human civilisation. After escaping Earth, The Colonists are now free to roam the galaxy in search of a new home and construct their dream settlement. You’ll advance through three different Ages as you build infrastructure for your colony by constructing road, boat and train transport systems.”

      Quite a sweet game actually, one I consider quite the gem if you’re into such building games and it’s been supported rather nicely since the original release in 2018. Since release it’s gained new official maps, new translations, AI upgrades, a map editor, entirely new game mechanics and the latest being a random map generator.

  • Desktop Environments/WMs

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

      • Why the KDE community is #MovingToGitlab

        The KDE community is #MovingToGitlab! After announcing the original decision to migrate to GitLab in November 2019, KDE has officially completed phase one of their migration, and contributors have begun to use GitLab on a daily basis at invent.kde.org. Read on to learn more about KDE’s migration story.

      • KDE’s GitLab is now Live

        After our final decision to adopt GitLab in November 2019, KDE started the work of tackling the many challenges that come with moving a whole development platform for a large open source community. KDE has now officially completed Phase One of the adoption and contributors have begun to use GitLab on a daily basis.


        GitLab will also help us to achieve goals like “Consistency”, as it will help our community members have a single solution to their needs. Now, we will be able to host and review code, manage projects/issues, communicate, collaborate, and develop software/applications on a single platform.

        By adopting GitLab as a platform, we will be adding stability to our framework, as we will count on the support of GitLab as a company. GitLab, Inc. has nearly a decade of experience behind it, releases new versions on a regular basis and, apart from its in-house team, counts on an active community of third party contributors. This guarantees that our new development platform will be updated and maintained throughout the years.

      • KDE Completes Transition To GitLab For Developer Portal

        KDE has completed its transition to its own self-hosted GitLab instance for Git hosting and other developer services for handling of bug reports and merge requests.

        KDE has followed the likes of GNOME, FreeDesktop.org / X.Org, and other projects on centering around GitLab for their Git serving and related hosting rather than relying upon the likes of GitHub.

      • Google Summer of Code 2020 – Week 3

        This week, I spent most of my time testing the Rocs graph-layout-plugin. I needed to test the method that applies the force-based layout algorithm to a graph, whose signature is the following.


        Before going to the non-functional part, I decided to deal with the easy and familiar functional tests. I was not precise in my description of the method deliberately. Actually, there is at least one guarantee that it should provide: if we draw each node as a circle of radius nodeRadius with centers at the positions calculated by the method, these circles should respect a left-margin and a top-margin of length margin. This was a nice opportunity for me to try the QtTest framework. I wrote a data-driven Unit Test and everything went well.

        Back to the non-functional part, I decided to write a quality benchmark. The idea is to measure some aesthetic criteria of the layouts generated for various classes of graphs. The metrics already implemented are: number of edge crosses, number of edges that cross some other edges, number of node intersections and number of nodes that intersect some other node. Although there is no formal definition of a nice layout, keeping the values of these metrics low seems to be desirable. Currently, I already implemented generators for paths, circles, trees and complete graphs. For each one of these classes of graph, I generate a number of graphs, apply the layout algorithm a certain number of times to each of them, and calculate summary statistics for each one of the considered aesthetic metrics.

  • Distributions

    • 7 Best Linux Distros for Security and Privacy in 2020

      Privacy and security are pressing concerns for all of us these days – not a day goes by that we aren’t bombarded with security news headlines about hacks, breaches and the increased storing and monitoring of sensitive personal information by governments and corporations.

      Luckily, when it comes to security, Linux users are faring better than their Windows- or Mac- using counterparts. Linux offers inherent security advantages over proprietary operating systems due to the transparency of its open-source code and the constant, thorough review that this code undergoes by a vibrant global community. While transparent source code may at first seem like a privacy nightmare, it is actually the complete opposite. As a result of the “many eyes” that Linux has on its code at all times, security vulnerabilities are identified and remedied very rapidly. In contrast, with proprietary OSes like Windows or MacOS, source code is hidden from outsiders – in other words, users are dependent upon Microsoft or Apple to find, fix and disclose vulnerabilities. Linux is also a relatively unpopular target for malicious hackers due to its small user base.

      While all Linux “distros” – or distributed versions of Linux software – are secure by design, certain distros go above and beyond when it comes to protecting users’ privacy and security. We’ve put together a list of our favorite exceptionally-secure Linux distros and spoken with some of their lead developers to find out first-hand what makes these distros so great. This article aims to help you evaluate your options and select the distro that best meets your individual needs.

    • Reviews

      • Panorama – Part I Of Ubuntu 20.04 LTS Review

        This is the first part of my review and here I talk about its Look and Feel or let me word it panorama. First, I present you here a video I name it Ubuntu 20.04 in One Minute that reveals to you the panorama of this amazing computer operating system including desktop animation effects and how one interacts with everything inside it. Second, I present you long explanations following it to emphasize the improvements since the age of Hardy Heron version twelve years ago. In panorama, it got so many changes in order to make it just works for most people yet still unique with its own humanity for human beings. So, let’s go to the review and see you in the next part!

    • New Releases

      • 4MLinux 34.0 BETA released.

        4MLinux 34.0 BETA is ready for testing. Basically, at this stage of development, 4MLinux BETA has the same features as 4MLinux STABLE, but it provides a huge number of updated packages.

        Road map:
        June 2020 -> BETA
        September 2020 -> STABLE
        December 2020 -> OLD STABLE
        March 2021 -> EOL

    • Screenshots/Screencasts

      • A First Look At Linux Mint 20 “Ulyana” Cinnamon

        Linux Mint 20, codenamed “Ulyana,” was recently released so I thought I would take a quick first look at Linux Mint 20 with the Cinnamon desktop environment. Linux Mint 20 has made headlines recently due to their decision to try to block installation of snaps.

      • Linux Mint 20 First Look: Fresh Cinnamon Looking Good

        Linux Mint 20 release is around the corner. Beta version is released and we take it for a ride to show you what it looks like and the new feature it brings.

    • SUSE/OpenSUSE

      • OpenSUSE Leap 15.2 set for release

        OpenSUSE Leap 15.2 is complete and ready for a planned release on July 2. Leap is the version based on SUSE Linux Enterprise, but with many updated packages; see the 15.2 features page for an overview of what’s coming. “Leap 15.2 is filled with several containerization technologies like Singularity, which bring containers and reproducibility to scientific computing and the high-performance computing (HPC) world. Singularity first appeared in the Leap distribution in Leap 42.3 and provides functionality to build smallest minimal containers and runs the containers as single application environments. Another official package in Leap 15.2 is libcontainers-common, which allows the configuration of files and manpages shared by tools that are based on the github.com/containers libraries, such as Buildah, CRI-O, Podman and Skopeo. Docker containers and tooling make building and shipping applications easy and fast.”

      • openSUSE Leap 15.2 is Gold!
    • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

      • Data centre automation for HPC

        Now physical servers are a lot easier to set up, provision and configure thanks to tools such as MAAS. For example, connecting servers and selecting which ones will be configured for networking and which for data, is as easy as clicking a button on a web UI. This may seem innocuous but it means that a server farm can be used for one project in the morning and for something completely different in the afternoon.

        In reality, the server configuration is only the start, the base from which everything bubbles up. Re-configuration at the server level allows for use of higher-level tools such as LXD VMs, Kubernetes and Juju to quickly put together an environment with reusable code without needing to be a DevOps expert or having to wait for an expert to do it for you.

        What we are going to see in the next few years is a growth of HPC with cloud native tools. Or, in other words, bringing cloud software tools and good developer experience into the world of HPC to make the operations easier.

      • Linux Mint 20

        Linux Mint 20 “Ulyana” has been released in Cinnamon, MATE, and Xfce editions. Linux Mint 20 is based on Ubuntu 20.04 and will be supported until 2025. Release notes are available for Cinnamon, MATE, and Xfce.

      • 13 Things To Do After Installing Linux Mint 20

        Linux Mint is easily one of the best Linux distributions out there and especially considering the features of Linux Mint 20, I’m sure you will agree with that.

        In case you missed our coverage, Linux Mint 20 is finally available to download.

        Of course, if you’ve been using Linux Mint for a while, you probably know what’s best for you. But, for new users, there are a few things that you need to do after installing Linux Mint 20 to make your experience better than ever.

      • Convert Ubuntu Into Rolling Release Using Rolling Rhino

        Arch Linux follows the rolling-release model to provide the latest and up-to-date stable versions of most software. Not just Arch Linux, many other distributions, such as Gentoo, Kali Linux, KaOS, PCLinuxOS, Solus, openSUSE and Void lInux etc., are also following the rolling release model. Despite its popularity, Ubuntu is still missing in this list. Not anymore! Thanks to Rolling Rhino script, we can now convert Ubuntu into a rolling release distribution easily and quickly.

        Rolling Rhino is a shell script that transforms the Ubuntu into a “rolling release” that tracks the devel series. It converts the Ubuntu desktop and official desktop flavours, that has been installed from a daily image, into a rolling release distribution. So you can get the latest software as released by the original developers in your Ubuntu desktop. Under the hood, this script sets all your apt sources to devel branch. Rolling Rhino is created and maintained by Martin Wimpress from Canonical among other contributors.

      • Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter Issue 637

        Welcome to the Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter, Issue 637 for the week of June 21 – 27, 2020.

  • Devices/Embedded

  • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

    • Apache Advances Multiple Open Source Cloud Efforts

      The Apache Software Foundation updates a number of its open source cloud projects, including Apache Libcloud, Traffic Control and CloudStack, with new functionalities

    • Web Browsers

      • Chromium

        • Chromium-based browsers pros and cons

          How much do you think about your internet browser? Not much, right? If it gets you to your target web destination, that’s all that matters. For most, it’s a choice between Chrome or Firefox, with Edge and Safari coming not far behind.

          While most internet users opt for Chrome, many people don’t realize that many of the other leading browsers in the world are not so different from it. They use the Chromium source code.

          While Chrome and Chromium are separate projects, one is Google’s proprietary web tool, and the other is open source. But there are a lot of similarities between the two.

          Developers love Chromium. It’s easy to work with, has tons of extensions and API kits, and more. You can even swap out Chrome and use Chromium directly instead as your browser.

      • Mozilla

        • mozregression GUI: now available for Linux

          This is an area where using telemetry in mozregression can help us measure the impact of a change like this: although Windows still dominates in terms of marketshare, Linux is very widely used by contributors — of the usage of mozregression in the past 2 months, fully 30% of the sessions were on Linux…

        • Firefox 78.0 Released – Also Serves As The Newest ESR Version

          Firefox 78.0 is available this morning as the newest version of Mozilla’s web browser. Firefox 78.0 is also significant in being the newest Extended Support Release (ESR) series.

          With Firefox 78 ESR it’s a big upgrade over the current Firefox 68.9 ESR release with the many new features introduced over the past number of months. But even if currently on Firefox 77, the Firefox 78 release continues with its WebRender improvements, TLS 1.0/1.1 are retired and disabled, WebRTC handling improvements, the Linux system requirements have been raised to needing Glibc 2.17 / libstdc++ 4.8.1 / GTK+ 3.14 or newer, a new RegExp engine for SpiderMonkey, and other Web API support additions.

        • Firefox 78 Released, Bumps Linux System Requirements

          Yeah, can’t say I’ve heard of the last one either.

          Tongue firmly out of my check I once again report that latest change-log for this (rightly) revered browser isn’t loaded with changes.

          There’s are some welcome security patches, a bevy of bug fixes, and a pinch of usability finesse. But major headline additions? Well, I’ll let you decide if any of the ones below qualify as that!

        • Firefox 79 Enters Beta, Lets You Export Saved Passwords and Logins to a CSV File

          Firefox 79 was in the Nightly channel since earlier this month, but today Mozilla released the first beta version to the public, following the official release of Firefox 78 as the newest ESR (Extended Support Release) series.

          While Firefox 78 packs a lot of cool new features and improvements, Firefox 79 will probably see only a handful of enhancements as it continues the monthly, rapid release cycle. And, the first new feature to surface is the ability to export saved passwords and logins to a CSV file.

          The new option is implemented in the Logins & Passwords page a.k.a. Firefox Lockwise. It can be accessed by clicking on the three dots on the right side of the screen, next to “Sign in to Sync” button, and then on the “Export Logins” entry in the context menu (see the screenshot gallery below for details).

        • New in Firefox 78: DevTools improvements, new regex engine, and abundant web platform updates

          A new stable Firefox version rolls out today, providing new features for web developers. A new regex engine, updates to the ECMAScript Intl API, new CSS selectors, enhanced support for WebAssembly, and many improvements to the Firefox Developer Tools await you.

        • Mozilla’s analysis: Brazil’s fake news law harms privacy, security, and free expression

          Breaking end-to-end encryption: According to the latest informal congressional report, the law would mandate all communication providers to retain records of forwards and other forms of bulk communications, including origination, for a period of three months. As companies are required to report much of this information to the government, in essence, this provision would create a perpetually updating, centralized log of digital interactions of nearly every user within Brazil. Apart from the privacy and security risks such a vast data retention mandate entails, the law seems to be infeasible to implement in end-to-end encrypted services such as Signal and WhatsApp. This bill would force companies to leave the country or weaken the technical protections that Brazilians rely on to keep their messages, health records, banking details, and other private information secure.

        • Brazil’s fake news law will harm users

          The “fake news” law being rushed through Brazil’s Senate will massively harm privacy and freedom of expression online. Among other dangerous provisions, this bill would force traceability of forwarded messages, which will require breaking end-to-end encryption. This legislation will substantially harm online security, while entrenching state surveillance.

          Brazil currently enjoys some of the most comprehensive digital protections in the world, via its Internet Bill of Rights and the upcoming data protection law is poised to add even more protections. In order to preserve these rights, the ‘fake news’ law should be immediately withdrawn from consideration and be subject to rigorous congressional review with input from all affected parties.

        • 5 Serious Flaws in the New Brazilian “Fake News” Bill that Will Undermine Human Rights

          The Brazilian Senate is scheduled to make its vote this week on the most recent version of “PLS 2630/2020” the so-called “Fake News” bill. This new version, supposedly aimed at safety and curbing “malicious coordinated actions” by users of social networks and private messaging apps, will allow the government to identify and track countless innocent users who haven’t committed any wrongdoing in order to catch a few malicious actors. 

          The bill creates a clumsy regulatory regime to intervene in the technology and policy decisions of both public and private messaging services in Brazil, requiring them to institute new takedown procedures, enforce various kinds of identification of all their users, and greatly increase the amount of information that they gather and store from and about their users. They also have to ensure that all of that information can be directly accessed by staff in Brasil, so it is directly and immediately available to their government—bypassing the strong safeguards for users’ rights of existing international mechanisms such as Mutual Legal Assistance Treaties.

        • Missing structure in technical discussions

          People are amazing creatures. When discussing a complex issue, they are able to keep multiple independent arguments in their heads, the pieces of supporting and disproving evidence, and can collapse this system into a concrete solution. We can spend hours navigating through the issue comments on Github, reconstructing the points of view, and making sense of the discussion. Problem is: we don’t actually want to apply this superpower and waste time nearly as often.


          I’m excited to have this new way of preserving and growing the structure of a technical debate. We can keep using the code hosting platforms, and arguing on the issues and PR, while solidifying the core points in these .argdown files. I hope to see it applied more widely to the workflows of technical working groups.

    • FSF

      • GNU Projects

        • GnuCash 4.0

          GnuCash is a personal and small business finance application, freely licensed under the GNU GPL and available for GNU/Linux, BSD, Solaris, Mac OS X and Microsoft Windows. It’s designed to be easy to use, yet powerful and flexible. GnuCash allows you to track your income and expenses, reconcile bank accounts, monitor stock portfolios and manage your small business finances. It is based on professional accounting principles to ensure balanced books and accurate reports.

          GnuCash can keep track of your personal finances in as much detail as you prefer. If you are just starting out, use GnuCash to keep track of your checkbook. You may then decide to track cash as well as credit card purchases to better determine where your money is being spent. When you start investing, you can use GnuCash to help monitor your portfolio. Buying a vehicle or a home? GnuCash will help you plan the investment and track loan payments. If your financial records span the globe, GnuCash provides all the multiple-currency support you need.

        • Hardware Challengem Ham Radio

          We got a nice note from Michelle Thompson this week thanking us for mentioning the GNU Radio Conference in last week’s Links article, and in particular for mentioning the virtual CTF challenge that they’re planning. It turns out that Michelle is deeply involved in designing the virtual CTF challenge, after having worked on the IRL challenges at previous conferences. She shared a few details of how the conference team made the decision to go forward with the virtual challenge, inspired in part by the success of the Hack-A-Sat qualifying rounds, which were also held remotely. It sounds like the GNU Radio CTF challenge will be pretty amazing, with IQ files being distributed to participants in lieu of actually setting up receivers. We wish Michelle and the other challenge coordinators the best of luck with the virtual con, and we really hope a Hackaday reader wins.

        • June GNU Spotlight with Mike Gerwitz: Twelve new releases!


    • Public Services/Government

      • The public sector of Bühl uses Free Software

        The town of Bühl, Germany, has started the successful Free Software based video conference platform “Palim! Palim!”. To find out more about the relations between Bühl and Free Software we conducted an interview with Eduard Itrich, the digitisation officer from the town of Bühl.

        The town of Bühl, in the south-west of Germany, started a video conference platform, called “Palim! Palim!” based on the Free Software “Jitsi Meet” to ease the effects of the COVID-19 lock-down for their citizens. “Palim! Palim!” quickly became a striking success; the citizens were thrilled with it and also other municipalities started to became interested. But “Palim! Palim!” is not the only Free Software project used and maintained by the town of Bühl. To find out more about the background behind “Palim! Palim!” and what other relations the town of Bühl has with Free Software we conducted this interview with the “Chief Digital Officer,” Eduard Itrich, from the public administration of Bühl.

    • Programming/Development

      • Welcome to Lua 5.4

        Lua is a powerful, efficient, lightweight, embeddable scripting language developed by a team at PUC-Rio, the Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil. Lua is free software used in many products and projects around the world.

        Lua’s official web site provides complete information about Lua, including an executive summary and updated documentation, especially the reference manual, which may differ slightly from the local copy distributed in this package.

      • Lua 5.4 Released With New Garbage Collection Mode, Warning System

        Lua 5.4 shipped today as the newest version of the interpreter for this scripting programming language that is particularly popular for embedding within games and other applications.

        Lua 5.4 is the first major release since Lua 5.3 shipped five years ago with support for bitwise operators, integers, UTF-8 library handling, and other capabilities. Lua 5.4 is another hearty feature update.

      • 10 ReactJS tools to boost your web development skills

        Did you know most résumés submitted for jobs get rejected with just a single glance? That’s a daunting fact if you are trying to get started in web development, but there are ways to improve what you have to offer prospective employers and clients. For application developers, now is a great time to increase your skills, and open source is the best avenue for professional development. You don’t need to attend university to learn new open source skills; all you need is a sense of direction and self-discipline.

        ReactJS is one of many skills you would be wise to learn on your way to becoming a successful web developer. If you’re already comfortable with JavaScript and HTML, it is a natural next technology to learn. If you’re not familiar with them yet, then you’ll find ReactJS a great place to start as a programmer.

      • Excellent Free Tutorials to Learn D

        D is a general-purpose systems programming language with a C-like syntax that compiles to native code.

        It is statically typed and supports both automatic (garbage collected) and manual memory management.

        D programs are structured as modules that can be compiled separately and linked with external libraries to create native libraries or executables.

      • Worrying about the npm ecosystem

        The npm ecosystem seems unwell. If you are concerned with security, reliability, or long-term maintenance, it is almost impossible to pick a suitable package to use — both because there are 1.3 million packages available, and even if you find one that is well documented and maintained, it might depend on hundreds of other packages, with dependency trees stretching ten or more levels deep — as one developer, it’s impossible to validate them all.

        I spend some time measuring the extent of the problem.

        I suggest that this is a social problem, more than a technical one, and propose a semi-social solution: a human-maintained subset of the total registry, based on shared criteria by which a “healthy” package can receive a seal of approval. One criterion would be to only depend on other approved packages.

      • Be a better Scrabble player with a Raspberry Pi High Quality Camera
      • Perl/Raku

        • 2020.26 Cloud Gone

          The Conference in the Cloud is over. All that’s left is a number of videos (and some slides):

        • Handling Perl character codes is very easy even for beginners.

          I feel that Perl users are losing confidence because of negative feedback from other communities.

          The opinions of people who intend to harm Perl are 99% useless in my experience.

          Handling character codes is actually simple.

          Because all you have to do is remember the following three things.

          1. use utf8 and save file as UTF-8

          2. if you print text, encode text to platform charset(Linux is UTF-8, Windows is cp932)

          3. if you get text from outside, decode text from platform charset(Linux is UTF-8, Windows is cp932)

          If “use v7;” enabled “use utf8″, it would be less memorable and less mistake.

      • Python

        • Build Your Own Domain Specific Language in Python With textX

          Programming languages are a powerful tool and can be used to create all manner of applications, however sometimes their syntax is more cumbersome than necessary. For some industries or subject areas there is already an agreed upon set of concepts that can be used to express your logic. For those cases you can create a Domain Specific Language, or DSL to make it easier to write programs that can express the necessary logic with a custom syntax. In this episode Igor Dejanović shares his work on textX and how you can use it to build your own DSLs with Python. He explains his motivations for creating it, how it compares to other tools in the Python ecosystem for building parsers, and how you can use it to build your own custom languages.

        • python-bugzilla REST API support

          I just released python-bugzilla 2.4.0. The main interesting bit it adds is support for Bugzilla’s REST API.

          All previous versions of python-bugzilla and /usr/bin/bugzilla only used the XMLRPC API, but that is deprecated in Bugzilla 5.0+ and all new API development is taking place on the REST API.

          In practice there isn’t any released bugzilla version that has big differences between the two API versions. On bugzilla.redhat.com specifically the XMLRPC API is still recommended, because some custom features are not available over REST yet. Note though that bugzilla.mozilla.org is looking at disabling the XMLRPC API entirely, but they are usually ahead of the Bugzilla curve.

        • PSF GSoC students blogs: Weekly Check-In | Gsoc’2020 | #5

          Fourth week of GSOC was slightly different than what I wanted it to be like. My struggle with a stable internet connection and area lockdown due to COVID19 precautionary measures were just too overwhelming , Though its been a while with this struggle but things were at a peak this week and I couldnt make a PR until saturday when things calmed a little. And that was a slight relief.

        • PSF GSoC students blogs: GSoC: Week 5: improve CVEDB

          I have finished my work on improving cvedb this week. I am using aiohttp to download NVD dataset instead of requesting with multiprocessing pool. This has improved our downloading speed since now every tasks are downloading concurrently in same thread instead of 4 tasks at a time with process pool. I have also measured performance of aiosqlite but it was significantly slower while writing to database so, I decided to keep writing process synchronous. I have also added a beautiful progressbar with the help of rich module. So, now user can get feedback about progress of the downloading and updating database. Here is the demo of how does it look now.

        • PSF GSoC students blogs: Weekly checkin #5
        • PSF GSoC students blogs: Weekly Check In – 4
      • Shell/Bash/Zsh/Ksh

      • Java

        • Should API-restricting licenses qualify as open source?

          In its 2014 Oracle v. Google decision, the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit held that the method declarations and “structure, sequence, and organization” (SSO) of the Java SE API were protected by copyright. This much-criticized result contradicted a decades-old industry and professional consensus assumption that APIs were in the public domain, reflected in an ongoing common practice of successive reimplementation of APIs, and persisting even after the general copyrightability of software was settled by statute. Unsurprisingly, that consensus shaped the view of APIs from within open source. Open source licenses, in particular, do not address APIs, and their conditions have not customarily been understood to apply to APIs.

  • Standards/Consortia

    • OASIS Open Joins Open Source Initiative

      “OASIS Open and OSI have been informal collaborators on licensing and other topics from the early days of the OpenDocument Format to our recent Open Projects Program,” noted Guy Martin, Executive Director of OASIS Open. “We are delighted to formalize our relationship as a sign of our mutual commitment to expanding the role of open source in the standards definition process and look forward to an exciting future for this combined open ecosystem.”

      Founded in 1993, the OASIS Open community is committed to advancing work that lowers cost, improves efficiency, stimulates innovation, grows global markets, and promotes interoperability. Each project operates independently under OASIS’s industry-leading process and clear Intellectual Property Rights.

      Begun in 2019, the OASIS Open Projects program provides open source communities with foundation-level support—for governance, intellectual property (IP) management, collaboration tools, outreach and events—with an optional path to standardization and de jure approval for reference in international policy and procurement. Open Projects lets communities choose from seven currently-supported, OSI-approved licenses.

    • Gopherspace in the Year 2020

      Today the Gopher protocol has been supplanted almost completely by the HTTP protocol upon which the World Wide Web is based. Though the Internet has changed considerably, Gopher servers are still around. Text is still mostly what users see in gopherspace, and it can still be navigated with gopher-capable Internet browsers. Sadly, only one Veronica search engine appears to operate today. Now, When a user navigates through gopherspace with the Veronica search engine, by following links, or by entering URL’s into his browser, he has an experience in many ways similar to surfing the modern Internet.

      Though about two dozen Internet browsers can still access gopherspace, either natively or with plugins, I will only talk about one. I’ll focus on the Lynx browser, because it is readily available, easy to use, and powerful. The Lynx browser also runs on all the major operating systems. I’ll show readers how to use the Lynx browser to get into gopherspace and have a look around.

  • Leftovers

    • Education

      • 50,000 people sign up for Duolingo’s Finnish course within first four days

        The language learning app, which has an estimated 300 million users worldwide, published a Finnish language course for the first time on June 24, following years of speculation and delays. Finnish has been described by the company as the “most requested” language ever from its community of users, and the initial uptake of the course has been viewed as promising by Duolingo employees.

      • Covid-19 is no longer a short-term crisis for higher education

        Traditional university planning processes cannot keep up. Strategies become working documents rather than the dot-perfect papers that used to work their way through our administration. Requirements can be turned on their heads in the time it takes one committee to pass a paper to the next.

    • Health/Nutrition

      • “Back to Normal” Thinking and Why Trump’s Anti-Mask Stance Has Been So Deadly

        Understanding why some people continue to disregard the best advice of public health officials, means understanding why how dangerous the president’s behavior has become.

      • The Fight’s Not Over. Doctors Like Me Will Continue Pushing for Abortion Rights.

        When I was a medical student, I was one of thousands of students who received a mailing from an anti-abortion organization that included this so-called joke…

      • ‘Time Is Now to #PassTheDamnBill’: 116 California DNC Delegates Demand Pelosi Hold Floor Vote on Medicare for All

        “Our privatized, employer-based health coverage model is an international embarrassment. It economically crushes working families for the private profits of a few elites.”

      • ‘Absolute Robbery’: Gilead Announces $3,120 Price Tag for Covid-19 Drug Developed With $70 Million in Taxpayer Support

        “Taxpayers provided funding for the development of this drug. Now Gilead is price-gouging off it during a pandemic. Beyond disgusting,” said Sen. Bernie Sanders.

      • ‘Not Even Close to Being Over’: WHO Chief Says Despite Some Progress, ‘Pandemic Is Actually Speeding Up’

        The warning from Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus came after global Covid-19 cases topped 10 million and the death toll passed 500,000.

      • New COVID Infections Surge in US as Trump Fixates on His Election Prospects

        COVID-19 is surging across the United States, but the only thing this president seems to care about is the slow decay of his election prospects.

      • The Pandemic Shows the Importance of Funding Early Childcare and Education Infrastructure

        The COVID-19 pandemic that shut down the economy in March has led to sharp declines in employment and output. In December, women made up more than half the workforce; now, for the first time, women have lost jobs at a more rapid rate than men. They need to be able to return to employment in large numbers if the economy is to recover and get onto a strong growth path.

      • Massive Case of Denial: COVID Surges in US, Tops 10M Globally, as Pence Touts “Remarkable Progress”

        As coronavirus cases top 10 million worldwide and spikes are being reported in 36 states, Vice President Mike Pence has touted “truly remarkable progress” on the pandemic. “This has just been a massive case of denial, of idiotic government policy, of the lack of any strategic planning, any really specific strategic goal,” Pulitzer Prize-winning science writer Laurie Garrett says of the response to the pandemic. “We’re in very, very dire straits right now.”

      • Russia’s longest quarantine How ‘Rosatom’ is keeping its key nuclear power plant workers in isolation during the coronavirus pandemic

        Russia’s government-owned atomic energy corporation, Rosatom, has been keeping key employees from its nuclear power plants in isolation during the coronavirus pandemic, reports the investigative news outlet Proekt. In particular, employees in charge of the control panel blocks and all technological aspects of these power stations have been isolated. Rosatom declared these people “critically important” workers, since the power units of these stations can’t function without them, and because replacing them is very difficult: in order to work in a nuclear control room you need to obtain a license and pass an exam. Russia has 11 nuclear power plants, which, according to Proekt’s calculations, employ a little more than 1,000 control room operators. Presumably all of them were sent into quarantine: Rosatom announced the decision to isolate “all workers who ensure the continuity of production processes and work in nuclear facilities” in the spring.

      • COVID Surges in US as Pence Touts “Remarkable Progress”

        As coronavirus cases top 10 million worldwide and spikes are being reported in 36 states, Vice President Mike Pence has touted “truly remarkable progress” on the pandemic. “This has just been a massive case of denial, of idiotic government policy, of the lack of any strategic planning, any really specific strategic goal,” Pulitzer Prize-winning science writer Laurie Garrett says of the response to the pandemic. “We’re in very, very dire straits right now.”

      • Covid-19 Means Good Times for the Pentagon

        Or how to vaccinate the military-industrial complex.

      • Pence Praises Texas Governor for Reopening That Fueled Massive Surge in Covid-19 Cases and Hospitalizations

        “The head of the Covid Task Force just commended our governor for his role in opening the economy and creating the largest outbreak to date.”

      • “We need to catch that cold!”: Antivaxxers and COVID-19 deniers vs. public health

        One of the happy delusions that many in the science-based community (including, at least somewhat, myself) and mainstream press have held over the years that has been punctured by the arrival of COVID-19 is that one main reason that antivaccine beliefs persist is that we’ve forgotten the toll that the diseases against which we vaccinate. If, for instance, measles returned with a vengeance, or haemophilus influenza type B, or polio, antivaxxers would see the error of their ways, and resistance to vaccination would diminish. How many times have you heard this argument? How many times have I suggested this? It’s a comforting thought. However, truth be told, it is also one that makes us, as science advocates, feel a bit smug and confident. That’s not to say that there isn’t a grain of truth in this idea, particularly for the vaccine-hesitant, but for hard-core antivaxxers, it has been a comforting myth. But why is it a myth? It seems so obvious, so rational, to think that the return of deadly diseases would knock some sense into antivaxxers’ heads. So why have antivaxxers aligned themselves with COVID-19 deniers and conspiracy theorists in the most emphatic way possible, with a number of COVID-19 lockdown protests being organized by antivaxxers? Let me provide some perspective as someone who’s been following the antivaccine movement for nearly two decades and writing about it regularly for over 15 years. I will admit that these are my observations, and that there isn’t a lot of research, but perhaps I can provide some ideas for actual research and action regarding public health.

      • An enduring coronavirus mystery: Why do only some get sick?

        Sexton added that the virus’ long incubation period has also led to some confusion over how “asymptomatic” is defined. According to the CDC, it could take up to 14 days after exposure for someone to show any symptoms.

        “There are people who are positive but truly have no symptoms, and there are people who go on to develop very mild or atypical symptoms, and then there are people who think they are asymptomatic until you query them about some of the more unusual manifestations of COVID-19,” she said. “But sometimes, these all get lumped together as ‘asymptomatic.’”

        It’s thought that people in all three categories — including those who are presymptomatic — can transmit the virus, although there was again some confusion about the nature of asymptomatic spread. In early June, the World Health Organization was forced to clarify that the coronavirus can be spread by people with no symptoms after one of the agency’s top infectious disease epidemiologists, Maria Van Kerkhove, said she thought asymptomatic spread of COVID-19 was “very rare.”

      • The True Cost of Dollar Stores

        Frustration was rising at City Hall, too. When Mayor Whaley entered city government, in 2005, she viewed the dollar chains as serving a useful purpose, but over time she saw how the chains’ stores in urban neighborhoods contrasted with the ones in rural areas. Residents often sent her photos of dangerously cluttered aisles, and she asked fire marshals to issue warnings. “The more and more ubiquitous they’ve gotten, they’ve gotten less and less caring,” she said. “I came to see them as glorified check-cashing and payday lenders, for the way they prey off the poor but don’t really care about the poor.”

      • JUSTICE MALALA: What three American airports taught me about Covid-19 and political leadership

        Last Wednesday, the front page of The New York Times carried a story saying that the EU is prepared to block Americans from entering its political and economic zone because the US has failed to control the spread of Covid-19.

        “That prospect, which would lump American visitors in with Russians and Brazilians as unwelcome, is a stinging blow to American prestige in the world and a repudiation of President [Donald] Trump’s handling of the virus in the US,” the newspaper said.

        How did it come to this? For many of us growing up in the 1980s and 1990s in the shadow of the Cold War, the US was a beacon of scientific and medical prowess. It was a country you looked to for science-led innovations and solutions to humanity’s challenges. Russia was the country of Chernobyl; the US was the man on the moon and the “giant leap for mankind”. What could have happened to bring the country so low in its response to Covid-19, let alone international diplomacy and leadership?

      • Coronavirus Damages Lungs of Asymptomatic Patients Too, Medical Examiner Says

        Thogmartin cited his own experience doing autopsies and a study published earlier this month by Scripps Research, a nonprofit medical research facility. That analysis suggested that up to 45 percent of those infected with the novel coronavirus were asymptomatic, while also noting that these individuals appeared to suffer lung damage.

        “When the person dies, you can find lungs that don’t look and feel like lungs anymore,” Thogmartin said.

      • As Supreme Court Blocks Louisiana’s Anti-Choice Law, Reproductive Rights Groups Breathe Sigh of Relief—and Prepare for Continued Fight

        “The court’s legitimacy in the eyes of the public will be threatened if they follow through on Trump’s promise to end legal abortion,” said NARAL Pro-Choice America.

      • Supreme Court Strikes Down Louisiana Abortion Restrictions

        The vote was 5 to 4, with Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. voting with the court’s four-member liberal wing but not adopting its reasoning. The chief justice said respect for precedent compelled him to vote with the majority.

      • Justice Roberts Joins Liberal Wing to Block Louisiana’s Restrictive Abortion Law

        The United States Supreme Court issued a ruling on Monday invalidating a Louisiana law that sought to put tough restrictions on abortion clinics, threatening access to the procedure for thousands of individuals in the state.

      • The Supreme Court Struck Down A Louisiana Abortion Law. Here’s Where The Fight Could Head Next.

        Today’s ruling means that the center of gravity in the abortion debate will likely shift away from requirements placed on clinics — particularly those that are similar to the ones struck down in Texas and Louisiana. According to the Guttmacher institute, a research organization that supports legal abortion, 14 states, including Louisiana and Texas, have passed admitting-privileges restrictions since 2011. The Supreme Court striking those laws down is a significant victory for abortion-rights supporters, because those types of restrictions were very onerous for doctors to comply with. A ruling in favor of Louisiana in this case would have almost certainly made it even harder to get an abortion in the state — and perhaps also in other parts of the country.

        But as you can see in the chart above, there are still hundreds of other laws that limit abortion rights on the books. And a few kinds of laws that several Republican-controlled legislatures have recently passed could turn into the next big front in the abortion wars.

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Apple News just lost The New York Times

          The New York Times has announced that, as of today, it will no longer be distributing articles in the Apple News app, making it one of the largest publishers to end its association with Apple’s publishing platform.

          In a memo announcing the change, Meredith Kopit Levien, chief operating officer at the Times, said the company wants “a direct path for sending those readers back into our environments, where we control the presentation of our report, the relationships with our readers, and the nature of our business rules.” She added that the paper’s “relationship with Apple News does not fit within these parameters.”

        • [Old] Fujitsu must face scrutiny following Post Office Horizon trial judgment

          The second trial in the group litigation, Bates and Others vs Post Office, examined the Post Office’s claim that Fujitsu’s Horizon system used in branches was robust and not to blame for accounting inaccuracies. Horizon was introduced in 1999/2000, and is used by about 12,000 Post Office branches.

          Following an out-of-court settlement between the two parties, the judgment for the second trial, which examined whether Horizon could have been to blame for the accounting shortfalls, was handed down by Fraser, who ruled unequivocally that the system was not robust.

        • [Old] Post Office IT contractor faces prosecution after judge’s ‘grave concerns’ about evidence

          Last week it was announced that the epic Bates v Post Office group litigation, which has dragged on for over three years, had been settled, and the Post Office admitted ‘we got things wrong in our dealings with a number of postmasters’. The settlement is £57.75m.

          This afternoon, the Horizon judgment – which is separate to the mediation and relates to the computer system which wrongly suggested postmasters had committed fraud – was handed down.

        • Eight more former Post Office workers referred to Court of Appeal

          They claim a glitch [sic] with the system created financial discrepancies which led to charges of theft or false accounting.

        • Pseudo-Open Source

          • Privatisation/Privateering

            • Linux Foundation

              • Ahana Announces Linux Foundation’s PrestoDB Now Available on AWS Marketplace and DockerHub

                PrestoDB is a federated SQL engine for data engineers and analysts to run interactive, ad hoc analytics on large amounts of data, which continues to grow exponentially across a wide range of data lakes and databases. As a result, data platform teams are increasingly using Presto as the de facto SQL query engine to run analytics across data sources in-place, without the need to move data. One of the fastest growing projects in the data analytics space, PrestoDB is hosted by the Linux Foundation’s Presto Foundation and is the same project running at massive scale at Facebook, Uber and Twitter.

              • MLflow moves to Linux Foundation project

                MLflow provides a programmatic way to deal with all the pieces of a machine learning project through all its phases — construction, training, fine-tuning, deployment, management, and revision. It tracks and manages the datasets, model instances, model parameters, and algorithms used in machine learning projects, so they can be versioned, stored in a central repository, and repackaged easily for reuse by other data scientists.

                MLflow’s source is already available under the Apache 2.0 license, so this is not about open sourcing a previously proprietary project. Instead, it is about giving the project “a vendor neutral home with an open governance model,” according to Databricks’s press release.

              • Scality Affirms Commitment to Open Source as Founding Member of New Linux Foundation to Solve Data Management Challenges

                Scality today announced its founder status and membership of SODA Foundation, an expanded open source community under the Linux Foundation umbrella. As a founding member, Scality joins forces with Fujitsu, IBM, Sony and others to accelerate innovation in meeting the challenges of data management across multiple clouds, edge and core environments for end users.

                The range of challenges end users are facing today has resulted in an increase in data management complexity. Data is scattered across various locations, including proprietary silos, the risk of security breaches is rising by the day, and datacenters are often reliant on a heterogenous range of data management solutions; today data management is more and more complex and time-consuming for CIOs and IT teams. SODA Foundation members are building a common framework to promote standardization and best practices that simplify management and unify storage pools. SODA Foundation announced yesterday that it is expanding to include both open source software and standards in order to integrate efforts across platforms and support its mission to enable data autonomy and mobility for end users.

              • Linux Foundation Hosts FinOps and Offers Free Related Training Course

                At this week’s virtual Open Source Summit, The Linux Foundation announced that it will host the FinOps Foundation, which aims to bring financial accountability to the area of cloud computing through collaborative management, best practices, education, and standards.

                According to the announcement, “the FinOps community is defining cloud financial management standards and is increasing access to education and certification for this discipline across industries.” In addition to hosting FinOps, The Linux Foundation is also offering a free edX course – called Introduction to FinOps – to help educate professionals in this area. The course will “cover the basics of FinOps and how it can positively impact an organization by building a culture of accountability around cloud use,” the announcement states.

              • FinOps Foundation Joins Linux Foundation to Bring Focus to Cloud Costs
              • 3 Blockchain Firms, iExec, IoTeX, and R3, join Linux Foundation’s Privacy-Focused Consortium

                Only half of the new entrants in the consortium deal with blockchain-related services, with R3 an enterprise-focused blockchain company, IoTeX is an internet-of-things company that integrates blockchain technology to secure data and iExec, a decentralized cloud computing firm. The three companies will join Oasis Lab, the only blockchain company present among the CCC founding members.

                Blockchain technology and TEEs share the common property of data security. The experience that these blockchain firms can bring data privacy TEEs so users will be able to not only “own their private data, but also to use it in a privacy-preserving way,” Raullen Chai, CEO of IoTex, said in a statement.

                According to Chai, the introduction of TEEs in confidential computing will solve two main issues in people’s everyday data privacy – facial recognition and contact tracing in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.

        • Security

          • IPFire 2.25 – Core Update 146 released

            The next Core Update for IPFire is available. It updates the IPFire kernel, enhances its hardening and adds mitigations for Intel’s latest hardware vulnerabilities…

            Arne has rebased the IPFire kernel on version 4.14.184 from the Linux kernel developers and integrated our custom patches into this release. It brings various stability and security fixes.

            This kernel brings mitigations for processor vulnerabilities in Intel’s processors and includes updates of Intel’s microcode.

          • IPFire Linux Firewall Discontinues Support for 32-Bit Systems with PAE

            A new update to the IPFire Linux firewall distribution has been released today with some important under-the-hood changes, especially regarding the future of 32-bit support.

            IPFire 2.25 Core Update 146 was announced today by developer Michael Tremer. This release bumps the Linux kernel to version 4.14.184 LTS, as well as the Intel microcode firmware, to mitigate the recent Intel hardware vulnerabilities dubbed as CrossTalk.

            Another important change in this new IPFire update is the discontinuation of support for 32-bit systems with PAE (Physical Address Extension), a memory management feature for the x86 architecture that allows 32-bit CPUs to access more than 4GB of RAM.

            IPFire 2.25 Core Update 146 doesn’t ship with the optional PAE kernel. The developers recommend all those using IPFire on pure 32-bit systems to upgrade their hardware to 64-bit as soon as possible.

          • Security updates for Tuesday

            Security updates have been issued by Debian (coturn, drupal7, libvncserver, mailman, php5, and qemu), openSUSE (curl, graphviz, mutt, squid, tomcat, and unbound), Red Hat (chromium-browser, file, kernel, microcode_ctl, ruby, and virt:rhel), Slackware (firefox), and SUSE (mariadb-100, mutt, unzip, and xmlgraphics-batik).

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • Now Is The Time: Tell Congress to Ban Federal Use of Face Recognition

              Cities and states across the country have banned government use of face surveillance technology, and many more are weighing proposals to do so. From Boston to San Francisco, elected officials and activists rightfully know that face surveillance gives police the power to track us wherever we go, turns us all into perpetual suspects, increases the likelihood of being falsely arrested, and chills people’s willingness to participate in First Amendment protected activities.

              That’s why we’re asking you to contact your elected officials and tell them to co-sponsor and vote yes on the Facial Recognition and Biometric Technology Moratorium Act of 2020.

            • Your Phone Is Vulnerable Because of 2G, But it Doesn’t Have to Be

              Security researchers have been talking about the vulnerabilities in 2G for years. 2G technology, which at one point underpinned the entire cellular communications network, is widely known to be vulnerable to eavesdropping and spoofing. But even though its insecurities are well-known and it has quickly become archaic, many people still rely on it as the main mobile technology, especially in rural areas. Even as carriers start rolling out the fifth generation of mobile communications, known as 5G, 2G technology is still supported by modern smartphones.

              The manufacturers of operating systems for smartphones (e.g. Apple, Google, and Samsung)  are in the perfect position to solve this problem by allowing users to switch off 2G.

            • Facial Recognition Software Finally Gets Around To Getting An Innocent Person Arrested

              Well, it’s happened. The thing people have been warning about for years. A person lost some of their freedom due to a facial recognition mismatch. It may have only been 30 hours, but it should have been zero. And it might have been zero hours if investigators had bothered to read the disclaimers attached to its facial recognition search results.

            • Twitch, YouTube, and Reddit punished Trump and other racists – and that’s a great thing for freedom

              This brings us to a series of recent decisions by big tech companies:

              Twitch, a popular video streaming service associated with the gaming community, temporarily suspended President Donald Trump’s account because the company claimed it violated their policies on hate. Trump had posted a video of a speech claiming undocumented Mexican migrants are more likely to be rapists and criminals, as well as a video in which he spoke hypothetically about “a very tough hombre” breaking into the house of a “young woman.”

              “Hateful conduct is not allowed on Twitch,” a spokesperson for the company told Salon. “In line with our policies, President Trump’s channel has been issued a temporary suspension from Twitch for comments made on stream, and the offending content has been removed.”

            • Microsoft, Ford, Pepsi Join Facebook, Instagram Ad Boycott

              American corporate giants Ford, Pepsi and Microsoft are the latest blue-chip companies to join the growing advertising boycott of Facebook and its subsidiary Instagram over its failure to deal with hate speech and misinformation on its platform.

              “We are pausing all national social media advertising for the next 30 days to re-evaluate our presence on these platforms,” Ford said in a statement to Ad Age. “The existence of content that includes hate speech, violence and racial injustice on social platforms needs to be eradicated. We are actively engaged with industry initiatives led by the Association of National Advertisers to drive more accountability, transparency and trusted measurement to clean up the digital and social media ecosystem.”

            • YouTube Bans More White Supremacist Channels for Hate Speech

              YouTube has wrestled with how best to respond to inflammatory and offensive videos posted by provocateurs like Molyneux and Spencer, who have amassed huge followings on the world’s largest video site. Tech companies say they are not responsible for the views posted by their users, and only take down videos that violate their policy guidelines.

            • YouTube bans Stefan Molyneux, David Duke, Richard Spencer, and more for hate speech

              YouTube has banned several prominent white supremacist channels, including those belonging to Stefan Molyneux, David Duke, and Richard Spencer.

              Other channels banned include American Renaissance (with its associated channel AmRen Podcasts) and the channel for Spencer’s National Policy Institute. The channels repeatedly violated YouTube’s policies, a YouTube spokesperson said, by alleging that members of protected groups were inferior. These come alongside other violations that led to YouTube taking action.

    • Defence/Aggression

      • How to Reverse the US’s Shockingly Low Global Peace Index Ranking

        The GPI measures peace in three domains: Societal Safety and Security, Ongoing Domestic and International Conflict, and Militarization.

      • Defense Industry Cheers as the Trump Administration Is Poised to Loosen Restrictions on Drone Exports

        In light of the U.S. decision, Congress must step up and exert its oversight role.

      • A Decades-Old Atrocity Finally Sees Its Day in Court

        In the dark early morning hours of November 16, 1989, an elite unit of the US-trained Atlacatl Battalion entered the Pastoral Center of the Central America University (UCA) in San Salvador. The soldiers rousted six Jesuit priests who lived there and executed them in their pajamas, one-by-one, with an AK-47 shot to the back of the head. On orders to “leave no witnesses,” they also murdered the Jesuits’ cook and her 16-year-old daughter, who were found lying together in “an embrace full of bullets,” according to a poignant description of one witness who did survive the massacre.

      • Will South Korea’s Moon Defy Trump and Improve Relations with North Korea?

        North Korea is in the news again.  As always, that means that it is time for mainstream journalists and establishment figures to reach for the handy cliché and to recycle received opinion as a substitute for thought. Terms like “provocation,” “threat,” and “aggression” abound. Not surprisingly, powerful political and military actors in the United States are seizing the opportunity offered by strained inter-Korean relations to try and kill any prospect of reengagement with the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK – the official name for North Korea).

      • Is the Deep State Attempting a Hybrid War in Mexico?

        An important article by journalist Ben Norton appeared on the online outlet The Grayzone describing the content of a leaked document that consists “of an executive summary of ‘Project BOA,’ outlining what it calls a ‘plan of action’ – a blueprint of concrete steps the opposition alliance will take to unseat AMLO.” AMLO is Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, and BOA stands for Bloque Opositor Amplio (Broad Opposition Bloc). The document was presented by AMLO himself at a press conference in early June and the source of the leak remains unknown. Some of the alleged members of this “alliance” have denied the existence of such document. However, its content is quite credible within the geopolitical context of the region.

      • Bombing People Is Not Feminist, No Matter How You Spin It

        That this structure still exists, reaping untold violence across the world, only it is now headed by women, is hardly a step forward for feminism.

      • ‘Annexation Is Illegal. Period.’: UN Human Rights Chief Slams Israeli Government

        Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is planning to begin implementing the annexation plan July 1, despite mounting international outcry.

      • What Jamaal Bowman’s Historic Win Represents for the Palestinian People

        For decades, the pro-Israel lobby was able to carry the day in Congress because Members feared the repercussions of criticizing Israel. That tide is turning.

      • “Atrocious”: Police Killed Elijah McClain in 2019. Why Did It Take Colorado So Long to Launch Probe?

        Colorado Governor Jared Polis has ordered a new investigation into the 2019 police killing of 23-year-old Elijah McClain in Aurora, which is facing renewed scrutiny and outrage amid the nationwide uprising against police brutality. McClain was walking home from a store last August when someone called 911 to report a “suspicious person.” Three Aurora police officers who answered the call tackled McClain to the ground and placed him in a chokehold as he pleaded for his life, and medical responders who arrived then injected McClain with the powerful sedative ketamine. He suffered a cardiac arrest on the way to the hospital and died several days later. “It’s really atrocious that it’s taken almost a year for this case to gain the kind of attention that it should have gained immediately,” says Mari Newman, attorney for the McClain family.

      • Iran Issues Arrest Warrant for Trump Over Suleimani Assassination

        The Iranian government on Monday issued an arrest warrant for U.S. President Donald Trump and recommended that he face “murder and terrorism charges” over the January assassination of Gen. Qasem Soleimani that brought the two nations to the brink of all-out war.

      • Iran Issues ‘Murder and Terrorism’ Arrest Warrant for Trump Over Soleimani Assassination

        “His prosecution will be pursued even after the end of his term in office.”

      • Protest and the Post-Legitimation State

        In the wake of the killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin, protests have spread across the United States (and the world). These protests force us to confront the question of state legitimacy in the United States today in a way that we have not considered in over fifty years. They also allow us to discern the thread connecting the Occupy Wall Street (OWS) and #BlackLivesMatter (BLM) movements.

      • Election officials report nearly 40 percent turnout in Russia’s ongoing constitutional plebiscite

        As of June 29, turnout for Russia’s plebiscite on constitutional amendments has reached 37.2 percent, Interfax reports, citing the Deputy Chairman of the Central Election Commission, Nikolai Bulayev.

      • Iran calls for Interpol to issue a “red warning” for the immediate arrest of President Trump

        Iran called for Interpol to issue a “red warning” for the immediate arrest of the president, who was reported to have told associates he ordered the strike in part to distract from impeachment proceedings.

        Interpol said in a press statement that it could not do so, citing constitutional restrictions on “any intervention or activities of a political, military, religious or racial character.” The trans-border law enforcement agency said it would not consider such requests, though it did not say whether Iran had submitted an official notice.

      • A few dead Americans — what’s the big deal? Trump’s disastrous foreign policy looks even worse

        According to the Times, and as later confirmed by the Washington Post and the Wall Street Journal, Trump was briefed on this in March, but made a great show of insisting that Russia be allowed back into the G7 throughout this past spring so he didn’t seem overly concerned. Setting aside the pretext for the Soleimani assassination, he is typically very cynical about these things. (Recall that he excused Russian President Vladimir Putin’s killing of journalists by saying, “Well, I think that our country does plenty of killing, too.”)

        Since the story broke, Trump and the White House have offered a number of responses. Trump tweeted that he knew nothing about this and was never briefed. He also mischaracterized the story and said, oddly, that “there have not been many attacks on us.” Is the thinking here that even if it did happen, we didn’t lose many people, so what’s the big deal?

        The president carried on with his weekend, playing golf with Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., tweeting incessantly about the arrests of four people for defacing a monument, and otherwise acting entirely unconcerned about this story.

      • European Union Terrorism Situation and Trend report (TE-SAT) 2020

        Terrorists’ ultimate goal is to undermine our societies and our democratic political systems. Terrorism generates fear, empowers political extremes and polarises societies. Europol’s EU Terrorism Situation and Trend report (TE-SAT), pulls together facts and figures on terrorist attacks and arrests in the EU in 2019: [...]

      • Powerful Islamist Group Intensifies Crackdown on Jihadists in Syria’s Idlib

        The crackdown comes nearly two weeks after several jihadist groups, including Hurras al-Din, announced the formation of a joint operations room to coordinate efforts in the fight against Syrian government troops and allied forces.

    • Transparency/Investigative Reporting

    • Environment

      • Louisiana Activists Face 15 Years for “Terrorizing” Oil Lobbyist with Box of Plastic Pollution

        Two environmental activists with the Louisiana Bucket Brigade face up to 15 years in prison for leaving a box of plastic pellets, found on the Texas coast, at the home of an oil and gas lobbyist in December. Advocates say the “terrorizing” felony charges reflect longtime attempts to criminalize environmental activists in Louisiana and come amid a campaign to block Formosa Plastics from building a new plant in St. James Parish, an area known as Cancer Alley. We speak with Anne Rolfes, director of the group Louisiana Bucket Brigade and one of those facing felony charges, and Gregory Manning, activist and pastor of Broadmoor Community Church, who was charged with inciting a riot as he led a peaceful protest along Cancer Alley in October of 2019.

      • The wetter world ahead will suffer worse droughts

        Things are bad now, but worse droughts are coming. More rain will fall in a warmer world, but not where and when we need it.

      • ‘Incredible Green Wave’ in French Elections Celebrated as ‘Mandate to Act for Climate and Social Justice’

        “Today, ecology is taking a big step. A giant step.”

      • Arctic Heat Overwhelms Green Infighting Issues

        Arctic temperatures are soaring to new records… and staying there, ever since May of this year. Truth be known, the Arctic’s been heating up for years. Siberia recently hit 105°F. That’s not normal. It’s 30°F hotter than normal.

      • Energy

        • Journalists uncover ‘Norilsk Nickel’ plant pumping toxic wastewater into the Russian tundra

          The Talnakh Concentrator Plant, which belongs to industrial giant Norilsk Nickel, has been dumping industrial wastewater into the tundra in the Russian Arctic, reported the independent newspaper Novaya Gazeta on June 27.

        • ‘The Poster Company for US Fracking Has Fallen’: Chesapeake Energy Files for Bankruptcy

          “Meanwhile the Trump administration continues to try and bail out this garbage fire industry with our tax dollars.”

        • Ancient coal fires led to prehistoric extinctions

          Did eruptions set ancient coal fires burning? Global heating happened 250 million years ago, just as it is happening now.

        • The CARES Act Is Subsidizing Fossil Capital

          As part of the CARES Act, Congress authorized the Federal Reserve to buy $250 billion in corporate bonds to prop up corporations across a variety of sectors. This week Influence Map released data showing that fossil fuel companies are likely to account for $19 billion of these purchases. According to the data, $4 billion are likely to be junk bonds, considered non-investment grade.

          For the most part, the purpose of this financing is to fund the continued extraction of fossil fuels that will wreak havoc on our climate and cause economic calamity at a greater scale than the coronavirus. Making the Fed’s decision even more dangerous is the evidence that the air pollution increases death rates from the virus.

          The fundamental question for fighting the climate crisis is not simply passing a Green New Deal that ramps up massive infrastructure spending in the clean energy sector. It is time we end the Dirty New Deal that back-doors massive investment in fossil fuel spending by the government.

      • Wildlife/Nature

        • The Shocking Number of Snakes Traded Internationally Each Year
        • On safari with Africa’s last great herds

          The book also contains some very serious underlying conservation themes of climate change, urbanization, modernity in the form of new roads, the potential downside of eco-tourism developing Africa.

          Even on Tanzania’s wildlife reserves and national parks where wild species are protected by law, poachers are having a field day killing gnus and other antelope species for food. In most cases, this is done with the ubiquitous poacher’s snare.

    • Finance

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • Battleground States

        On Thursday, June 25th, President Trump’s re-election efforts took him to the “battleground” state of Wisconsin, where he toured the Fincantieri Marinette Marine shipyard. He railed against the Democrats as a scarier enemy than Russia or China. He also celebrated Wisconsin’s win over domestic enemies like the state of Maine in securing a key shipbuilding project. “The first-in-class FFG(X) [frigate] will not just be a win for Wisconsin workers; it will also be a major victory for our Navy,” Trump said.  “… The stunning ships will deliver the overwhelming force, lethality, and power we need to engage America’s enemies anywhere and at any time.”  On many military minds, it seems, was China.

      • Doing the Dirty Work
      • The Blundering British Political Class has Shown the Same Incompetence in Both Fighting Wars and Coronavirus

        The government’s controversial Prevent programme aims to stop individuals becoming terrorists, but it would be much more effective if it taught British political leaders not to engage in wars that become the seed-beds of terrorism.

      • Congress Must Hold President Trump Accountable!

        Here is an abridged version of a letter sent on June 22, 2020, by me and two constitutional law experts Bruce Fein and Lou Fisher, to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerald Nadler, and the Committee’s Vice Chairman, Jamie Raskin. It touches on where Congress has not exercised its constitutional authority to hold Trump accountable under the law.

      • ‘Are you sure this isn’t fake?’ Kremlin spokesman responds to reports of major companies monitoring voter turnout among employees

        Meduza: Our publication discovered that there is an electronic system [called] votely.ru, which is being used to monitor turnout among employees at large enterprises in the vote on amendments to the constitution. For example, Russian Post, Rostec, and Rostelecom are connected to the system. Employees at these companies are being given special QR-codes, which are then scanned at polling stations under the pretense of participating in various contests and quizzes. All the data is being entered into the [Votely] system. The experts we interviewed say that this kind of data collection violates the law. We also found out that the system is working on the servers of Russia’s government agencies, using their IP-addresses. Does the [Putin] administration know about the existence of such a system? Is this system connected to the authorities, and will the Kremlin look into how it ended up on the servers of government agencies?

      • Trump’s Geriatric Race War

        If the Trumpist political movement has a heartland, it is surely The Villages, a retirement community in Florida just an hour’s drive away from Disney World. Like the famous theme park, The Villages is a sumptuous capitalist utopia, a meticulous tribute to the ability of big business to create an immersive artificial reality. Writing in Politico in 2018, Michael Grunwald described it as a “groomed dreamscape of gated subdivisions, wall-to-wall golf courses, adult-only pools and old-fashioned town squares.”

      • An Open Letter to California Governor Gavin Newsom on Ethnic Studies
      • Nothing Succeeds Like Secession: Suggested Demands for CHOP From a Friendly Panarchist Ally

        I have always been fascinated by secessionist movements. It goes back to my childhood love of maps, flags and geography. I use to spend hours poring over atlases and fixating on the strange autonomous zones that only existed inside fluid borders drawn in dotted lines. Strange places no American ever spoke of, with exotic names like Transnistria, Gaza, Nagorno-Karabakh, and Western Sahara. I would eventually grow into a commie, Third World, war nerd who fastidiously followed and supported these esoteric independence movements from afar.

      • The De-Trumpification of America

        Let’s assume that Donald Trump loses the election in November.

      • Great Minds Think Alike: Bolsonaro and Trump

        Great minds think alike. And you probably thought the only thing those two great minds had in common was their love of hydroxychloroquine and their enthusiastic support for using it to combat the coronavirus.  As the trump explained some weeks ago, during the period he was taking the drug, he’d received lots of letters “from people who support my use of the drug.” Letters from “people” is clearly of more importance to the trump than medical information from experts. And  in that respect, we learned that President Jair Bolsonara of Brazil and the trump  have a lot in common.

      • Bolton and the Pandemic

        The corporate media is obsessing over John Bolton’s views with regard to Donald Trump, but it is worth examining what they’re not asking.

      • Trump Shares Video of Couple Pointing Semi-Automatic Weapon at Protesters

        President Donald Trump shared a tweet on Monday morning of a white St. Louis couple brandishing and pointing their guns in the direction of protesters against anti-Black racism and police violence who were marching toward the mayor’s office.

      • 116 California DNC Delegates Demand Pelosi Hold Floor Vote on Medicare for All

        Urging House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to “forego political expediency and incrementalism” in favor of a bold solution to the healthcare crisis exacerbated by the Covid-19 pandemic, 116 delegates elected to represent California at the Democratic National Convention issued an open letter Sunday demanding an up-or-down floor vote on the Medicare for All Act before the November election.

      • Trump used looted Venezuelan public money to build border wall with Mexico

        Right-wing opposition upset Trump didn’t give Guaidó gang all stolen Venezuelan money

      • You Can’t Just Vote Out Trumpism

        Let’s assume that Donald Trump loses the election in November.

      • Fake News With Special Guest Nolan Higdon – The Project Censored Show

        Notes: Nolan Higdon teaches history and media studies at California State University, East Bay, and is a frequent contributor to the annual Project Censored books. He and Mickey Huff are the authors of the recent City Lights book “United States of Distraction: Media Manipulation in Post-Truth America (and what we can do about it) and was one of the writers/directors of the recent Project Censored documentary, “United States of Distraction: Fighting the Fake News Invasion.”

      • Eggs Over Albanese: Labor’s Green Ham-Fisted Attempt To Distract On Stacking

        Anthony Albanese’s attempts to distract attention from his party’s internal factional troubles are as see-through as they are ridiculous. Sylvia Hale from Greens NSW weighs in.

      • Reddit bans r/The_Donald and r/ChapoTrapHouse as part of a major expansion of its rules

        Reddit will ban r/The_Donald, r/ChapoTrapHouse, and about 2,000 other communities today after updating its content policy to more explicitly ban hate speech. The policy update comes three weeks after Black Lives Matter protests led several popular Reddit forums to go dark temporarily in protest of what they called the company’s lax policies around hosting and promoting racist content. It marks a major reversal for a company whose commitment to free expression has historically been so strong that it once allowed users to distribute stolen nude photos freely on the site.

      • Twitch temporarily bans President Trump

        The suspension arrives a week after Twitch swore it would crack down on harassment within the community following reports of assault and harassment from streamers. It’s a sign that Twitch may be starting to take moderating streams a lot more seriously. The racist language it banned Trump for is often allowed on other platforms due to his role as a politician and president of the United States.

      • Twitch Suspends Donald Trump’s Campaign Account for “Hateful Conduct”

        Twitch’s decision to suspend Trump’s campaign account comes after clips from a 2016 campaign rally, as well as the president’s recent Tulsa rally, were shared on the platform.

        The 2016 video was flagged for Trump’s racist remarks about Mexican immigrants. “When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best. They’re not sending you. They’re not sending you. They’re sending people that have lots of problems, and their bringing those problems with us,” Trump says in the footage. “They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people. But I speak to the border guards and they tell us what we’re getting. And it only makes common sense. It only makes common sense. They’re sending us not the right people.”

      • Trump’s ‘white power’ retweet set off ‘five-alarm fire’ in White House

        The video remained on the president’s Twitter page, where he has 82 million followers, for more than three hours because White House officials couldn’t reach him to ask him to delete it, the two officials said. The president was at his golf club in Virginia and had put his phone down, the officials said.

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • As Predicted: Parler Is Banning Users It Doesn’t Like

        Well, that did not take long at all. On Friday we predicted that just like every other social media platform out there, the new favorite among people who falsely say that Twitter is censoring conservatives, would start taking down content and shutting down accounts just like everyone else. Because, if you run any sort of platform that allows 3rd party speech, sooner or later you discover you have to do that. In Friday’s post, we highlighted Parler’s terms of service, which certainly allows for it to take down any content for any reason (we also mocked their “quick read on Wikipedia” style understanding of the 1st Amendment).

      • Knight Foundation Grant To Copia To Research Content Moderation, Governance, Rules & Norms For Internet Infrastructure

        So many of the discussions around content moderation have focused on the so-called “edge-providers” (the companies that are more user-facing). We all know the stories about content moderation dealing with Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google, etc. But for a while now we’ve been concerned about how the debate will play out regarding content moderation at the infrastructure layers — that is the behind-the-scenes providers that people don’t always even know exist. This includes hosting companies, DNS providers, domain registrars, CDNs, broadband providers and many, many more.

      • Trump’s “Hateful Conduct” Gets Him Kicked Off Yet Another Social Media Site

        The social media website Twitch has temporarily suspended the account for President Donald Trump after flagging content that goes against the company’s rules of conduct.

      • ‘South Park’s’ old Islam, Muhammad jokes too hot for HBO Max; deal excludes five episodes

        Deadline noted that two controversial episodes, “Cartoon Wars Part I” and “Cartoon Wars Part 2,” are available on the South Park website — for now.

      • Is the space for critical thinking shrinking in Pakistan?

        Rights groups say the freedom of expression in Pakistan, particularly the freedom of press, has come under immense pressure since Prime Minister Imran Khan came to power in August 2018. The military has further consolidated its power during Khan’s government, activists claim.

      • Twitch And Reddit Ramp Up Their Enforcement Against ‘Hateful’ Content

        On Monday, both Twitch and Reddit ramped up their efforts to deal with various forms of hateful content on their platforms — and both of them ended up shutting down some forums related to President Trump — which inevitably (but incorrectly) resulted in people again screaming about “anti-conservative bias.” Reddit kicked things off by announcing new content policies (which you can read here). The key change was an expanded rule against communities that “promote hate based on identity or vulnerability.”

      • GOOGLE THREATENS TO DEFUND TECHDIRT? Where Are All The Politicians Complaining?

        OH NO. GOOGLE MUST HAVE ANTI-TECHDIRT BIAS! THEY’RE THREATENING TO DEFUND US! Or not. A couple of weeks ago, we received yet another notice from Google that some of the pages on Techdirt violated its AdSense policies (AdSense is Google’s program for putting ads on 3rd party pages). We’ll get to what those pages were and what the complaints were in a moment, but the timing struck us as ironic — as it came a day after we had written about why Google sending a similar notice to The Federalist was not some conspiracy of “anti-conservative bias” to silence them. Yet, when it happened to the Federalist, a bunch of big name politicians and commentators went into overdrive attacking Google.

    • Freedom of Information/Freedom of the Press

      • Journalists condemn attempts to cover up environmental damage from Norilsk fuel spill

        Journalists from the media association Syndicate-100 have issued a statement condemning attempts to cover up the scale of the ecological damage resulting from the massive fuel spill that took place at a Norilsk Nickel subsidiary in the Russian Arctic at the end of May.

      • ‘We haven’t seen new indictment’ Assange’s lawyers tell court

        The US government has failed to show its new indictment of Julian Assange either to his legal team or the Judge. This extraordinary fact emerged in Westminster magistrates court earlier today (Monday 29th June). Mark Sommers QC, acting for Assange, told the court he was ‘concerned that we are only hearing about this fresh indictment in the press’ and that neither he nor the court have been served with the document. The US Department of Justice’s Superseding Indictment was released to the press last Wednesday. It is meant to strengthen the US case against Assange but contains no new charges and little information that is not already in the public realm. ‘A superseding indictment is supposed to do what it says on the tin, it’s supposed to replace the existing indictment’, said WikiLeaks editor-in-chief Kristinn Hrafnsson, ’But the US have no new charges to bring, and they can’t even be bothered to send the court or the defence team the document. That just shows this is a glorified press release and not a new indictment at all.’  Hrafnsson continued ‘This shows how they are abusing due process in the UK and flaunting the legal system’s rules’. The US government is showing contempt both for the court and the defence lawyers by trying to run a prosecution in the press rather than in front of the judge. Without official sight of the fresh indictment the defence could make no response in court, despite the fact that it has been issued just days before the deadline for defence evidence on 10th July. Ill health prevented Julian Assange, on Doctors advice, from making the journey to the video room in Belmarsh prison to be part of the court proceedings. He has not  been able to join these routine procedural court proceedings for more than 3 months. The Covid crisis has further restricted contact between Assange and his lawyers. Judge Vanessa Baraitser also announced that the remainder of the extradition hearing is almost certain be heard in the Old Bailey, starting on Monday 7th September. The Don’t Extradite Assange campaign have said they will be protesting in a socially distanced manner when the hearing restarts.     Background The remaining three weeks of the Julian Assange extradition hearing is due to start on 7 September 2020.Julian Assange is charged by the Trump government with publishing the Afghan and Iraq war logs for which he could face 175 years in jail.  Julian Assange’s lawyers have experienced a considerable difficulty communicating with their client. Speaking at a recent hearing, Edward Fitzgerald QC, said ‘We’ve had great difficulties in getting into Belmarsh to take instructions from Mr Assange and to discuss the evidence with him.’ Mr Fitzgerald continued: ‘We simply cannot get in as we require to see Mr Assange and to take his instruction.’ The UN working group on arbitrary detention issued a statement saying that “the right of Mr. Assange to personal liberty should be restored”. Massimo Moratti of Amnesty International has publicly stated on their website that, “Were Julian Assange to be extradited or subjected to any other transfer to the USA, Britain would be in breach of its obligations under international law.” Human Rights Watch published an article saying, “The only thing standing between an Assange prosecution and a major threat to global media freedom is Britain. It is urgent that it defend the principles at risk.” The NUJ has stated “US charges against Assange pose a huge threat, one that could criminalise the critical work of investigative journalists & their ability to protect their sources”.

      • UK Judge Warns Assange on US Extradition Hearing Attendance

        Lawyers for Assange said he could not attend the latest hearing on his U.S. extradition case by video link from prison for medical reasons.

        District Judge Vanessa Baraitser set another hearing date of July 27 and said Assange must appear “unless there is medical evidence” to explain his non-attendance.

      • Julian Assange Lawyers Say New U.S. Indictment Could Derail Extradition

        Summers said Assange’s legal team had heard about the latest indictment through the press and is waiting to be served with it.

        “We are concerned it has obvious capacity to derail the hearing date,” listed for three weeks in September, he said, adding that Assange’s legal team are keen to keep to the current timetable.

      • Assange Surprised by Timing of New U.S. Indictment

        Assange himself was again absent from Monday’s hearing and unable to appear by videolink from prison because of medical reasons, Summers said.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • Powder Keg

        The previous Run the Jewels album Run the Jewels 3 arrived one month after Donald Trump was elected the 45th president of the United States. Atlanta’s Killer Mike and Brooklyn’s El-P echoed the horror and anger of many Americans shocked by the results of the 2016 election. The country felt raw, a powder keg of rage, anxiety, and fear brought on by Wall Street greed and the police killings of unarmed black people. Sensing an upheaval, Mike, an outspoken Trump detractor and Bernie Sanders surrogate, openly wondered when the revolution would arrive. On the song “2100” he rapped, “Nuclear’s too near / And the holders of the Molotov / Say that revolution’s right here, right now / And they ain’t callin’ off.” Indeed, Trump’s victory conjured the specter of full-scale revolt, the idea that this might be the breaking point. We all know the story of the last three years, though: Nothing happened.

      • Undermining Human Rights and Global Fight Against HIV/AIDS, Supreme Court Affirms Anti-Prostitution Pledge

        Critics called the ruling “a step back for human rights and public health.”

      • Republicans Fear D.C. Voters. That’s Why They’re Blocking Statehood.

        The House of Representatives made history on June 26, when it voted 232-180 to approve the Washington, D.C. Admission Act. This, noted the congressional delegate who advocates for the 705,000 Americans who live in the nation’s capital, was “[the] first time since the creation of the District of Columbia 219 years ago that either chamber of Congress has passed a bill to grant statehood to D.C. residents and, with it, equal citizenship.”

      • Black Liberation and Indigenous Sovereignty Are Interconnected

        The Nation and Magnum Foundation are partnering on a visual chronicle of untold stories of the coronavirus crisis and the struggle for racial justice—read more from The Invisible Front Line.—The Editors

      • Public Enemy, Nas, & More For Rendition of Fight The Power
      • What Does It Really Mean to Invest In Black Communities?

        Since the murder of George Floyd on may 25 and in the absence of a legitimate government response, laypeople armed with little more than cardboard signs have quickly become the arbiters of justice. The simple nature of their presentation—a combining of poster board and Sharpie—masks the incredibly sophisticated nature of their demand: “Divest and invest.”

      • What’s “Justice” in the Face of Police Killings? Full Societal Transformation.

        For a while now, the U.S. has been poised at the threshold of full-on fascism, and “I can’t breathe” is the future to which those in charge appear willing to consign Black people. Fortunately, today, we’re seeing multiracial and multi-class initiatives pushing the state and communities to respond differently to social conflict and, on a more ambitious level, pushing us all toward a more humane society.

      • ‘Abdicating Its Moral Responsibility,’ SCOTUS Paves Way for Resumption in Federal Executions

        “The death penalty has no place in a just society,” said Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass).

      • True detectives The precarious, not altogether lucrative, and often illegal life of Russia’s private investigators

        Today in Russia, there are more than 900 detective agencies, as well as an enormous number of self-described private investigators who gather financial, economic, and legal intelligence without ever notifying the authorities. In fact, many detectives constantly break the law, violating criminal statutes that technically prohibit activities that are essential to their investigative work. Meduza special correspondent Sasha Sulim spoke to several detectives about their lives and the intricacies of their craft, including one man who’s played a private eye on television and done the job for real on the streets of Moscow.

      • The Place You Call Home

        In “Novostroïka,” the opening story of Maria Reva’s Good Citizens Need Not Fear, we meet Daniil, a resident of 1933 Ivansk Street, a building that may or may not exist. It is winter, and the heat in his family’s apartment isn’t working. “Grandfather Grishko’s telling everyone he hasn’t seen his own testicles in weeks,” his aunt yells, adding, “We’re tired of the cold, Daniil…and we’re tired of hearing about the testicles.” However, when Daniil goes to the town council hall to get the heat turned on, the clerk has no record of the building, no address with that number. Daniil becomes flustered, asking her to check again. “Nineteen thirty-three Ivansk Street, Kirovka, Ukraine, USSR. Mother Earth.”

      • My Student Comes Home

        In 1990, Lawrence Bell was 14, orphaned and living in an abandoned house when three Camden cops pressured him to sign a confession of murder. Sunday, thanks to the dogged work of his laywer, he was freed.

      • Here’s How to Stop the Next Bill Barr From Gutting the Rule of Law

        The damage Attorney General William Barr has done to the Department of Justice is incalculable. He has surpassed every institutional metric in his quest to become the worst attorney general in US history. He’s likely responsible for shutting down the Robert Mueller investigation and is certainly responsible for misrepresenting its contents. He’s helped Donald Trump implement a truly monarchical theory of executive power. He’s ordered the teargassing of peaceful protesters so his boss could do a photo op with the Bible. And most recently, he tried to fire Geoffrey Berman, the head prosecutor for the Southern District of New York, via press release, possibly because Berman was looking into crimes committed by the Trump Organization or Trump’s cronies.

      • Battering Rams for All

        Pigs in the street
        sheep, lambs,
        and battering rams
        That slam, kabam
        Into John Doe’s condos
        He can keep one
        But does he need fifty?

      • Federal Court Rules Trump Effort to Detain Man Indefinitely Without Charges ‘Cannot Withstand Constitutional Scrutiny’

        Held without charges or evidence since 2017—and imprisoned overall for nearly two decades—the judge ordered, pending an appeal, for the U.S. government to release Adham Hassoun.

      • Missouri River Breaks: How BLM Neglect Threatens a Wild and Scenic River and National Monument

        One hundred forty-nine miles of the Missouri River in Montana is a designated Wild and Scenic River. It is also within the 375,000 acres Missouri River Breaks National Monument, which includes the Lewis and Clark and Nez Perce National Historic Trails. It is part of the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) Landscape Conservation System. The Monument also includes six wilderness study areas, the Cow Creek Area of Critical Environmental Concern, the Fort Benton National Historic Landmark, a watchable wildlife area, and Missouri Breaks Back Country Byway.

      • Progressive Challenger Kreibich Slams Right-Wing Democrat Gottheimer for “Trump Values” Voting Record

        “Josh Gottheimer should be ashamed of his pro-Trump record,” Kreibich said. “NJ-5 deserves a real Democrat who will stand tall for health care for all and bold climate action.”

      • Dutch Law Proposes a Wholesale Jettisoning of Human Rights Considerations in Copyright Enforcement

        With the passage of last year’s Copyright Directive, the EU demanded that member states pass laws that reduce copyright infringement by internet users while also requiring that they safeguard the fundamental rights of users (such as the right to free expression) and also the limitations to copyright. These safeguards must include protections for the new EU-wide exemption for commentary and criticism. Meanwhile states are also required to uphold the GDPR, which safeguards users against mass, indiscriminate surveillance, while somehow monitoring everything every user posts to decide whether it infringes copyright.

        Serving these goals means that when EU member states turn the Directive into their national laws (the “transposition” process), their governments will have to decide to give more weight to some parts of the Directive, and that courts would have to figure out whether the resulting laws passed constitutional muster while satisfying the requirement of EU members to follow its rules.

      • Egypt’s Crackdown on Free Expression Will Cost Lives

        For years, EFF has been monitoring a dangerous situation in Egypt: journalists, bloggers, and activists have been harassed, detained, arrested, and jailed, sometimes without trial, in increasing numbers by the Sisi regime. Since the COVID-19 pandemic began, these incidents have skyrocketed, affecting free expression both online and offline. 

        As we’ve said before, this crisis means it is more important than ever for individuals to be able to speak out and share information with one another online. Free expression and access to information are particularly critical under authoritarian rulers and governments that dismiss or distort scientific data. But at a time when true information about the pandemic may save lives, instead, the Egyptian government has expelled journalists from the country for their reporting on the pandemic, and arrested others on spurious charges for seeking information about prison conditions. Shortly after the coronavirus crisis began, a reporter for The Guardian was deported, while a reporter for the The New York Times was issued a warning.. Just last week the editor of Al Manassa, Nora Younis, was arrested on cybercrime charges (and later released). And the Committee to Protect Journalists reported today that at least four journalists arrested during the pandemic remain imprisoned. 

      • North Carolina Cops Fired After Their In-Car Camera Catches Them Talking About Wiping Black People ‘Off The (Expletive) Map’

        Sometimes cop cameras do what they’re supposed to. In most cases, camera footage captured by cops is used by prosecutors to build cases. But every so often, they provide the accountability we were promised when cameras began rolling out.

      • How to Make Defunding the Police a Reality

        On a Sunday in early June, Grand Army Plaza, a large square at the entrance to Brooklyn’s Prospect Park, swarmed with people of all different races and ages. A family march of parents and their children flowed into groups of young people on bikes. Many held signs declaring “Black lives matter,” but there were perhaps an equal number of other signs: “Defund the police.”

      • How NLG Members Can Support the People’s Strike

        The People’s Strike, formed as a growing coalition of workers, community, and political organizations confronting the COVID-19 pandemic by struggling against inept and corrupt government and the forces of capital—embodied by banks, corporations, brokers, and others— that put profit before the people and the planet and had such a disparate impact upon BIPOC. The NLG was an early endorser of the People’s Strike, as its principles are in alignment with the NLG’s mission of putting human rights and the rights of ecosystems over property interests and profit.

        The People’s Strike is also now focusing on the mass outrage reflected in the current nationwide uprising for the movement for Black lives against racist police violence. Economic justice and the police/prison injustice system are two of the issues emphasized in the People’s Strike’s list of 17 demands, and they are key contexts in which white supremacist and capitalist violence proliferates with impunity.

        Kali Akuno, co-founder and co-director of Cooperation Jackson, is one of the key organizers behind the People’s Strike. He recently gave an inspiring presentation to the NLG International Committee, emphasizing that while there have been periodic mass radical movements, all of which the NLG has been involved in, what has been lacking is organization for lasting change, rather than superficial reforms. He foresees growing repression (including of lawyers defending the movement), necessitating even more organized, coordinated responses. Read his article on this in Popular Resistance, and watch his interview on Democracy Now.

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

    • Monopolies

      • Patents

        • The Patent Examination Board (PEB) releases further information on the 2020 UK patent exams

          The Patent Examination Board (PEB) has released more information on the arrangements for the UK patent exams this year, in view of the COVID-19 pandemic.

          The information is buried on the PEB website, and can be accessed here. The PEB confirm their earlier indications that the UK exams will take place online. The date of the examinations remains unchanged (mid-October). It appears that candidates will have the choice of sitting the exams at home or at work. However, if they wish to sit their exams at work, candidates will need to submit an application for a change of examination venue. The deadline for such applications is 31 August 2020.


          Unfortunately, candidates will be at the mercy of their internet connection. If your internet flickers on the day of the exam, there will not be much that can be done. The PEB indicate that they “will not accept requests for Special Consideration after the examination based on the failure of IT/communications equipment, systems or software”. On the basis of this, it seems that patent attorney firms are advising candidates to take the exams at work. This will undoubtedly be easiest for trainees at the largest firms who can put the required arrangements in place. Trainees working at smaller firms or in-house may find it more difficult to satisfy the exam venue requirements.

        • USPTO Announces Additional Extension of Certain Patent Deadlines for Small and Micro Entities

          In a notice posted on its website earlier today, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office announced that it was further extending the time to pay certain required fees, but only for certain types of entities. As with the initial extensions announced by the Office on March 31, 2020 (see “USPTO Announces Extension of Certain Patent Deadlines”), the extension of those deadlines announced by the Office on April 28, 2020 (see “USPTO Announces Furthe