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Links 21/7/2015: Manjaro Linux 0.8.13, Kdenlive 15.08

GNOME bluefish



  • Desktop

    • Dell Temporarily Suspends XPS 13 Developer Edition Sales to Fix Issues
      Some very keen eyes from the Linux community noticed that the Dell XPS 13 Developer Edition was no longer available for purchase. Being just a community with no available information, the rumors quickly got out of hand, but it turns out that Dell is just making some changes. Sure, they could have handled this situation a lot better and informed the users about their plans before implementing them, but that didn't happen.

    • Linux without Flash: User Tips
      Adobe Flash has been both a gift and a curse wrapped up in the same package. It's a sluggish, often insecure and horribly bloated way to watch a video and play games on your computer. For years, Flash for Linux users was even worse: audio was out of sync with the video and you needed a special wrapper to play Flash videos on 64-bit Linux distributions. Even though things have gotten better in terms of compatibility, security still remains poor.

    • Should there be a $99 Chromebook?
      Chromebooks have been big sellers on Amazon for a long time now, with prices running from $150 on up. But one Chrome OS redditor recently wondered if it was time for there to be a $99 Chromebook. He got some interesting answers from his fellow redditors.

  • Server

    • No Agents Needed to Monitor Containers, Says Sysdig, Just Linux Kernel Changes
      Advocates of conventional VM environments have touted this as a key disadvantage of containers. If it is, then both VMs and containers share the problem. Virtual components are intended to be self-contained. Docker has begun to break through this barrier with its latest exploration of a plugins ecosystem. But even this may underscore the need for containers to report their health, and the opportunity for containers to one-up VMs yet again by beating them to a standard approach.

  • Kernel Space

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments/WMs

  • Distributions

    • Which Linux Chrome OS Clone is Right For You?
      Which route you take to Chrome OS depends on your needs. If you’re looking for Pure Chrome OS, you’ll want to go with Chromium OS. If you’re looking for a nearly-identical Chrome OS experience, with an additional boost from the Linux desktop, go with Solus. If you want the best of both worlds, give Chromixium a try.

    • Reviews

      • A solid experience with SolydXK
        SolydXK is a desktop distribution based on Debian's Stable branch. SolydXK originally began as an unofficial spin of the Linux Mint project, but has since grown into its own distribution with its own repositories. SolydXK is available in two editions, Xfce and KDE. While both editions strive to offer complete desktop solutions out of the box, the Xfce edition offers a faster, more resource friendly approach. The KDE edition provides more features and configuration options. At the time of writing, both editions of SolydXK appear to be offered as 64-bit x86 builds exclusively. I decided to try the project's Xfce edition (SolydX) and found the distribution's ISO was 1.4GB in size.

    • Arch Family

      • Manjaro Linux 0.8.13 Gets Its Fifth Update with Latest MATE and Cinnamon
        The Manjaro Linux 0.8.13 distro has received its fifth update and it looks like we're getting new versions for various desktop environments, not to mention the upgrades for the supported Linux kernels.

      • Review: Manjaro Linux 0.8.13 "Ascella" KDE
        That's where my time with Manjaro Linux 0.8.13 "Ascella" KDE ended. Overall, this distribution is quite polished, it seems to cater to newbies well, and I can't find much that is wrong with it. Of course, if I were to use it on a daily basis, there are other things that I'd have to get used to, such as the way KDE and its applications do things compared to MATE/Xfce, the way the KDE Kickoff menu is best used (because the KDE Lancelot menu does not appear to be available for KDE 5), and so on. In any case, though, I can heartily recommend it to newbies and more experienced users alike, and I would seriously consider using this on a daily basis.

    • Red Hat Family

      • Ratings Watch: Red Hat, Inc. (NYSE:RHT)

      • Fedora

        • Doing Fedora Snapshots/Rollbacks With Btrfs & Snapper
          All the way back to Fedora 13 has been work on supporting Btrfs system snapshots / rollbacks using this Linux next-generation file-system's CoW snapshot abilities. Those abilities were tied into a Yum plug-in for making a Btrfs snapshot whenever a Yum transaction would take place. Another alternative for Btrfs system snapshots on Fedora is by using Snapper.

        • Intel's Braswell NUC Trips On Fedora 22 But Runs Fine On Ubuntu 15.04
          This week I started testing Intel's new NUC5CPYH NUC as the first device with a Braswell SoC (not to be confused with Broadwell). The tests are progressing but the out-of-the-box experience hasn't been one of the best for Intel.

        • Intel's Broadwell i7-5775C Runs Much Happier On Fedora 22 Than Ubuntu Linux
          With using the MSI Z97-G45 GAMING motherboard that doesn't require any BIOS/UEFI tweaks to run better on Ubuntu, it still was locking up some times as noted in the article yesterday, but it was better than the other Intel Z97 motherboards tested with this socketed Broadwell processor. On Ubuntu these problems persisted with various versions of the Linux kernel tried from Linux 3.19 through Linux 4.2 Git. Interestingly, these kernel panics have vanished when switching to Fedora 22.

        • Telegram in Fedora
          Recently, there has been a new wave of instant messaging services focused on the mobile world. Examples include Whatsapp, Messenger, Hangouts, and Viber. However, these are all closed and don’t have the best record of security and privacy. A new service with a different approach is Telegram. It’s developed and run by a non-profit organization, has an open API and protocol, provides open source clients, and stresses privacy.

    • Debian Family

      • dgit 1.0, available for all users
        I am pleased to announce dgit 1.0, which can be used, as applicable, by all contributors and downstreams.

      • Dgit 1.0 Released: Making A Debian Archive Like A Git Repository
        Dgit allows users to treat Debian archives as Git repositories and to provide a "Git view" of any package. Dgit also allows building and uploading from Git. Dgit 1.0 adds anonymous read-only access support, among other changes.

      • Derivatives

        • Neptune 4.4 Release
          This version features a new LTS Kernel 3.18.16 which delivers better and more modern hardware support. We also did the biggest update in the graphicsstack since Neptune 4.0 by upgrading to XServer 1.17 and Mesa 10.5.8. This brings in support for modern graphiccards and better 3D performance. Old chips like voodoo or sis however aren't supported anymore. We updated the Hplip driver to support newer hp printers.

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Amazon Echo plus Wink hub equals smarthome simplicity [Ed: runs Linux]
      Adding a $50 Wink hub and a few connected LED bulbs just made Alexa our home's newest addition. And we're just getting started.

    • Installing Anything Else on Intel Compute Stick Voids Warranty
      Intel announced two models of the Intel Compute Stick, one with Windows and one with Ubuntu. For unknown reasons, Intel decided to make the Linux version a little less powerful, so people are thinking of buying the Windows version and just install Linux on it. As it turns out, it's not that simple.

    • Phones

      • Android

        • Get a 13.3-inch Android tablet and keyboard for $109.99
          Some tablet deals can't wait for Tuesday, so I hereby give you Tablet Monday...

          Ending Friday, and while supplies last, Staples has the refurbished NuVision TM1318 13.3-inch Android tablet for $109.99 shipped (plus tax). It's available in your choice of black, blue or pink, and it comes with a matching carrying case/stand and a Bluetooth keyboard.

        • I Regret My iPhone 6, Now I Want Android
          I never thought I needed an iPhone, until I did — until all my friends had them and I listened to music all day, every day, everywhere. But that was three years ago, and now I'm thoroughly bored and almost stifled by Apple smartphones. After about a month of owning my iPhone 6, I found myself loathing iOS's lack of freedom, limiting hardware and software, and boring ecosystem. Here's why my next smartphone will run Android.

        • A secret option in your Android phone can help make it work faster
          Whether you have the newest, fastest Android phone available or an older device that's starting to show its age in its declining performance, there's a neat little trick that should speed up the overall feel of your Android phone.

        • $30 Remix Mini aims to be the first serious Android PC
          The Remix Mini, which is expected to ship in October, is Jide Tech’s second Android device launched on Kickstarter, following an 11.6-inch Remix Ultratablet running its Remix OS version of Android on an Nvidia Tegra 4. The China-based Jide Tech, which was started by three ex Google staffers, had some trouble with distribution, but it appears that the funders have finally received their tablets, according to Android Police. The story suggests that the higher new worldwide shipping fees, which now range from a $15 to $30, are designed to ensure that users can get their Minis in a more timely fashion.

Free Software/Open Source

  • Where are the Women and Minority Open Source Programmers?
    Open source culture—in theory and largely in practice—is about as meritocratic as can be. Yet it's also nearly as dominated by white males as can be. Why is that? It's a question worth asking, especially in the wake of the Washington Post's observations a few days ago regarding Silicon Valley's "diversity problem."

  • Succeed in open source, change the world
    Growing a project means eventually having to change a culture, and making a culture where people are already happy change is a challenge. Harvard Business School professor John P. Kotter has developed a set of eight steps for change and transforming an organization with it. Peters recommended a subset of these for growth of open source projects.

  • Democratizing Open Source Technology to Empower Innovators
    Innovation is the new currency in today’s Idea Economy. In recognition of the leaders who are disrupting our tech-driven world, the editors at thought leadership site partnered with HP Matter to create the Innovators Index, a roster of digital pioneers making a global impact. This week we’ve featured Peter Semmelhack for designing open source tools that empower the next generation of innovators.

  • Huawei Bears Open Source Gifts From China
    Chinese technology giant Huawei has frequently been the subject of suspicion and sanction, particularly in the United States. But it’s also a company that produces key pieces of technology infrastructure, and an active contributor to various international open source initiatives. This week, at OSCON in Portland, Huawei announced the release of a new open source project, Astro. Astro tightly integrates the database capabilities of Apache HBase with the online query and analytics power of Apache Spark, potentially bringing Spark-powered data science a step closer to the huge structured data stores locked up inside many global enterprises.

  • An Intimate View: Standards vs. Open Source
    One person with intimate knowledge of those key differences is Heather Kirksey, director of NFV for the Open Platform for NFV Project Inc. , the Linux Foundation -backed open source effort. As someone directly involved in developing a recent and enduring telecom standard, TR-69, Kirksey has seen firsthand how both processes work and knows why open source is faster, as the result of a different kind of cooperation.

  • The Open Source Initiative Welcomes Mifos Initiative
    The Open Source Initiative€® (OSI) this week welcomed The Mifos Initiative as the latest Affiliate Member to join the global non-profit focused on promoting and protecting open source software, development and communities.

  • Pixar Presents A Blender To Renderman Plugin
    Earlier this year pixar released a free, non-commercial version of Renderman, their photo-realistic 3D rendering software used within the company's animated movies. Coming out now thanks to work by Pixar and the community is a Blender-to-Renderman exporter plug-in.

  • Haiku OS Working On A Systemd-Inspired Boot Daemon
    Haiku OS, the BeOS-inspired open-source operating system, has reached the point of being feature-complete for launch_daemon, their new boot/service manager partially inspired by systemd.

  • SaaS/Big Data

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

  • Funding

  • BSD

  • Public Services/Government

  • Openness/Sharing

    • What is open science?
      In his autobiography, Just for Fun, Linux creator Linus Torvalds argues that the open source process tends to mirror the scientific enterprise. "Science was originally viewed as something dangerous, subversive, and antiestablishment—basically how software companies sometimes view open source," he writes. And like science, Torvalds suggests, open source drives innovation: "It is creating things that until recently were considered impossible, and opening up unexpected new markets."

    • Open Hardware

      • 5 human-powered open hardware projects
        Thanks in large part to open hardware platforms like BITalino, biosignals are no longer bound to the walls of a medical practice; whether you're looking for the next cool project or to learn something new over summer vacation, physiological computing has plenty to offer. This article highlights a few ideas to get your creative juices flowing:

  • Programming


  • Health/Nutrition

    • Swedish capital to go car free in September
      Cars will be banned from Stockholm city centre for the first time on September 19th as the Swedish capital takes part in a Europe-wide initiative to encourage greener travel.

    • California Drinking Water: Not Just Vanishing, But Also Widely Contaminated
      In normal years, California residents get about 30 percent of their drinking water from underground aquifers. And in droughts like the current one—with sources like snowmelt from the Sierra Nevada mountains virtually non-existent—groundwater supplies two-thirds of our most populous state's water needs. So it's sobering news that about 20 percent of the groundwater that Californians rely on to keep their taps flowing carries high concentrations of contaminants like arsenic, uranium, and nitrate.

    • Jeremy Hunt Petition Calling For Health Secretary's Resignation Prompts Thousands Of Signatures
      More than 60,000 people have signed a petition calling for Jeremy Hunt to resign or be removed as health secretary over his seven-day NHS comments, less than 24 hours after it was set up.

      On Sunday Harry Leitch, a research fellow at the Cambridge Stem Cell Institute, launched a petition on saying the document should act as "a vote of no confidence in his leadership from the NHS and from the public".

      On the website Mr Leitch said that Mr Hunt's "out of touch policies" and "flippant remarks" about the NHS had "angered" NHS workers for a long while, but his recent speech on seven day working was the "last straw".

  • Security

  • Defence/Police/Secrecy/Aggression

    • Florida man dislikes sea turtles, shoots a volunteer protecting their nest
      A 72-year-old Marine veteran who volunteered to protect a sea turtle nest got beaten and shot in the butt for his troubles. Turtle-hater Michael Q. McAuliffe was arrested.

    • The Horrors of John McCain: War Hero or War Criminal?
      The top war-monger in Congress has been Senator John McCain, Republican from Arizona, seeker of the Republican presidential nomination. In one rhetorical bombing run after another, McCain has bellowed for “lights out in Belgrade” and for NATO to “cream” the Serbs. At the start of May he began declaiming in the US senate for the NATO forces to use “any means necessary” to destroy Serbia.

    • It’s Simple, Face the Nation: Iran Doesn’t Trust US Inspectors–and Shouldn’t
      These efforts are not exactly a secret to US corporate media; the Washington Post and Boston Globe jointly broke the news that the UN’s UNSCOM inspection program in Iraq had been used for US military espionage on January 6, 1999 (written up by Seth Ackerman in FAIR’s Extra!, 3-4/99, 11-12/02). In the Globe‘s words, UNSCOM concealed “an ambitious spying operation designed to penetrate Iraq’s intelligence apparatus and track the movement of Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein.”


      So it wasn’t considered debatable at the time—though a few years later, when the US was gearing up for an invasion of Iraq, US media started treating it as an allegation made by Iraq rather than an actual operation that had been exposed by leading US papers (as Ackerman documented—Extra!, 11-12/02).

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

  • Privacy

    • Obama Is Secretly Amassing Sensitive Personal Data On Americans For An Orwellian Race Database [Report]
      Paul Sperry, a fellow of the Hoover Institution at Stanford University, has raised alarm that the Obama administration is secretly amassing a database of sensitive personal information about Americans broken down by race for the purpose of engineering what the administration describes as “racial and economic justice.”

      Agents of the administration, according to the report published by the New York Post, are mining sensitive personal data — health, housing, financial, and employment — for the purpose of documenting and analyzing social, cultural, political, and economic “inequalities” between minorities and whites.

    • A Fascinating New Interview with Wikileaks’ Julian Assange
      SPIEGEL: Who uses these methods?

      Assange: The British GCHQ has its own department for such methods called JTRIG. They include blackmail, fabricating videos, fabricating SMS texts in bulk, even creating fake businesses with the same names as real businesses the United Kingdom wants to marginalize in some region of the world, and encouraging people to order from the fake business and selling them inferior products, so that the business gets a bad reputation. That sounds like a lunatic conspiracy theory, but it is concretely documented in the GCHQ material allegedly provided by Edward Snowden…

      SPIEGEL: What does this “colonization” look like?

      Assange: These corporations establish new societal rules about what activities are permitted and what information can be transmitted. Right down to how much nipple you can show. Down to really basic matters, which are normally a function of public debate and parliaments making laws. Once something becomes sufficiently controversial, it’s banned by these organizations. Or, even if it is not so controversial, but it affects the interests that they’re close to, then it’s banned or partially banned or just not promoted.

    • The weak case against strong encryption
      I used to think that the idea of banning encryption was too absurd for discussion. Whenever a politician or government official suggested it, I figured it to be a ploy covering the real desire, which was not to ban encryption, but to require backdoors that would allow encrypted content to be accessed by government agencies.

      So it goes in the United Kingdom, where the government of Prime Minister David Cameron seemed to be pushing for an outright ban. But now we hear from Cameron’s spokespeople that they don’t really want to ban encryption; instead, they would like to be able to decrypt anything they want at any time.

    • I'll Put My Name On This Piece Declaring It Idiotic To Argue Against Anonymity Online
      This happens every few months -- whenever there's a flare up of "bad behavior" on the internet. Some genius thinks he can solve everything by just "getting rid of online anonymity." The latest to step into this well trodden, widely debunked, canyon of ridiculousness... is Lance Ulanoff over at Mashable. He seems to think that he's the first person to seriously consider the idea of doing away with online anonymity, and it only serves to show that he's barely thought through the issue at all. First off, it's simply wrong to associate anonymous comments with trollish comments. Yes, some anonymous comments are trollish, but most are not. And, in fact, many trollish, harassing comments come from people who have their real names attached to them. This has been studied widely, but Ulanoff doesn't even bother to look for evidence, he just goes with his gut. The largest single platform for harassment online... has been Facebook, which famously requires "real names." That hasn't stopped harassment, and nor would it do so on Reddit.

  • Civil Rights

    • Slingbox Class Action Lawsuit Filed Over Unwanted Ads
      Last week, a class action lawsuit was filed against Sling Media Inc., the maker of a device called Slingbox that streams digital TV, alleging the company streamed advertisements without permission from consumers.

    • UK parents to get power to cancel children's passports over Isis fears
      Cameron said that parents would in effect have the right to cancel the passports of their children under 16 to prevent them from travelling to war zones.

    • NSA Helped CIA Outmanoeuvre Europe on Torture
      Today, Monday 20 July at 1800 CEST, WikiLeaks publishes evidence of National Security Agency (NSA) spying on German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier along with a list of 20 target selectors for the Foreign Ministry. The list indicates that NSA spying on the Foreign Ministry extends back to the pre-9/11 era, including numbers for offices in Bonn and targeting Joschka Fischer, Vice Chancellor and Foreign Minister from 1998 to 2005.

    • The Making of a Republican Snowdenista
      Rep. Thomas Massie, R-Ky., hands me a copy of a letter from James Clapper in which the director of national intelligence complains to two members of the House Intelligence Committee about Massie’s recent attempts to reform one of the NSA’s massive surveillance programs.

      On the top right, in curly script, Massie has written his response: “Get a warrant.” It’s in red ink. He’s underlined it.

      “If you assume the worst” about the National Security Agency’s surveillance practices, Massie tells me, “it’s not a bad position to take, given what we’ve found out.”

      Indeed, for Massie, as with so many others, the information NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden gave journalists two years ago about the extraordinary sweep of U.S surveillance programs was a huge eye-opener.

      Prior to the Snowden revelations, Massie says, he knew almost nothing about the NSA’s implementation of the tools Congress gave it to protect national security.

    • EU Proposes To Reform Corporate Sovereignty Slightly; US Think Tank Goes Into Panic Mode
      Back in May, we wrote about the European Commission's sharing "concerns" about corporate sovereignty chapters in trade agreements. The Commissioner responsible for trade, Cecilia Malmström, even went so far as to say that the present investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) system was "not fit for purpose in the 21st century." But rather than removing something that is unnecessary between two economic blocs with highly-developed and fair legal systems, she instead proposed to "reform" it, and to start working towards an international investment court.

      That idea was dismissed almost immediately by the US Undersecretary for International Trade at the Commerce Department, Stefan Selig. Despite that, the EU seems set on replacing today's corporate sovereignty with some kind of court. In a non-binding but important set of recommendations to the European Commission regarding TTIP, the European Parliament called for the following...

  • Intellectual Monopolies

Recent Techrights' Posts

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