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Links 10/3/2020: Mesa 19.3.5, 4MLinux 32.0 and gThumb 3.9.1 Released

  • GNU/Linux

    • The latest Windows 10 update is so broken, Microsoft is advising some folks to uninstall it
    • Memory-Lane Monday: Say, this is almost as easy as Linux! [Ed: "Linux" coverage at IDG reduced to bizarre rambles (a lot of the rest is Microsoft promotion in 'news' clothing)]

      This pilot fish works as a Linux sysadmin at a small software-as-a-service company. “I come in early in the mornings, while the tech that does most of our Windows and desktop work comes in later and stays later,” fish says.


      But next morning it’s fish who gets a panicked call from the user, who tells fish that nothing is working and can he please come right over to take a look?

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • The Sunlight Manifesto: Desktop Linux out of Darkness

        This is only for those who actually want desktop Linux to go big.

        Do you feel like that means nothing for your use and enjoyment of Linux? Stop reading now.

        It might hold your attention if you're merely sympathetic, but it's mostly for those commercially motivated.

        You are few who might do much.

        Thanks belong to Marc Di Luzio, Jason Evangelho and Jochen Spang, whose feedback improved this immensely.

        Let's jump right in.

      • The rise of the Linux distribution-specific laptop

        About two years ago, a young man began a small business, called Juno Computers. The purpose of that business was to sell laptops with elementary OS pre-installed. He has since shifted over to selling laptops with Ubuntu pre-installed. Why the change? I do not know. But the intention of the store hinted at something I believe we'll see much more of in the future.

        Said something is the rise of the Linux distribution-specific laptop.

        We're already seeing more of this. We have the KDE Slimbook (KDE), Kubuntu Focus (Kubuntu), Purism Librem (PureOS), the Dell XPS Developer edition (Ubuntu), all of the System76 laptops (Pop!_OS), Penguin M3 (Linux Mint), Huawei Matebook (with Deepin Linux), Pinebook (Debian), and Tuxedo Red (which will soon be sold with Manjaro Linux). That list continues to grow.

        This rise of the distribution-specific laptop is an important one for Linux as a whole. But more than that, it's a crucial step forward for Linux distributions.

      • Best Laptops for Linux and Apps Development [2020]

        In the laptop market, you're bound to find a wide array of products that have been designed explicitly for Linux development. However, the ones that we've mentioned in this article are not only perfect for open-source development but also have been given the seal of approval by other fellow Linux developers.

        Apart from your programming skills, there are a few other things that can also influence the way you code, and one of them is your computer system for sure.

        Even though it isn’t like you can’t code on a regular PC or laptop, speaking from personal experience, you can make the most out of your programming skillset by going for a computer with high specs and one that’s been specially designed for such tasks.

    • Server

      • LXD 3.22 Released- Added Features, Improvements & Bug Fixes

        LXD 3.22: Stephene Graber from LXD Team said, ” The LXD Team is very excited to announce the release of LXD 3.22 and you will find VM images Ubuntu, Debian, CentOS, Fedora, and Arch” The latest LXD 3.22 comes with a number of added features, updates, and Bug Fixes for its containers and virtual machines and it is readily available for Download for your Linux Distro.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • 2020-03-09 | Linux Headlines

        Jellyfin has its biggest release yet, and Memcached sees a significant update. Plus the Debian Project Leadership contest has begun, and the report spreading false information about the distro.

      • Desktop Environments and their Distros

        Desktop Environments and their Distros Some distributions are made by the same teams as your Desktop Environments and in this video, we go over which ones share resources and if you should use the corresponding distribution.

    • Kernel Space

      • WireGuard: Great piece of software or not so much?

        In the Linux implementation, WireGuard is gaining an advantage by using GSO – Generic Segmentation Offloading. It creates a huge packet of 64 kilobytes and encrypts or decrypts it in one go. That way, overhead of initialising and calling cryptographic operations is being saved. If you want to maximise throughput that is a good idea to do.

        However, things are again not so easy in reality. Sending such a large packet to the network adapter will require that it is being cut into many smaller packets. Usually of 1500 bytes. 64 kilobytes would result in 45 packets (1480 bytes payload and 20 bytes IP header per packet). Those will then block the adapter for quite some time, because they all will be sent in one go. Packets that should be prioritised like VoIP calls will have to wait.

        So the high throughput that WireGuard claims to achieve is being bought by making other applications slower. This needs to go and the WireGuard team has already acknowledged it.

      • Linux kernel 5.7 to include new exFAT file-system driver [Ed: Notice how Microsoft boosters nowadays turn every bit of Linux news/coverage into Microsoft promotion]

        Version 5.7 of the Linux kernel is due to land later this spring, and when it does there is quite a lot to look forward to. Additions include a new exFAT file-system driver which is great news for users.

        While Linux has supported exFAT for a little while, the version that is currently support is limited because it is based on an old driver. But Samsung has been working away on an update version which will land in Linux 5.7, making it possible to work with larger media formatted using the exFAT file system.

      • Graphics Stack

        • Mesa 19.3.5
          I'd like to announce the release of Mesa 19.3.5, final release of the
          19.3.x series.
          You are encouraged to migrate to 20.0.1, released a few days ago, in
          order to obtain future fixes.

          Most fixes in this release are for Intel, followed by AMD, and a few scattered fixes here and there.

          Cheers, Eric


          Andrii Simiklit (1): Revert "glx: convert glx_config_create_list to one big calloc"

          Arcady Goldmints-Orlov (1): spirv: Remove outdated SPIR-V decoration warnings

          Caio Marcelo de Oliveira Filho (1): intel/gen12: Take into account opcode when decoding SWSB

          Danylo Piliaiev (1): i965: Do not generate D16 B5G6R5_UNORM configs on gen < 8

          Dave Airlie (1): gallivm/tgsi: fix stream id regression

          Dylan Baker (7): docs: Add SHA256 sum for 19.3.4 .pick_status.json: Update to 2a98cf3b2ecea43cea148df7f77d2abadfd1c9db .pick_status.json: Update to 946eacbafb47c8b94d47e7c9d2a8b02fff5a22fa .pick_status.json: Update to bee5c9b0dc13dbae0ccf124124eaccebf7f2a435 .pick_status.json: Update to 8291d728dc997e87b4d2e4e451692643a1dba881 .pick_status.json: Update to e4baff90812d799d586296fcad992ddcc553c359 .pick_status.json: Update to 01496e3d1ea0370af03e6645dbd2b864c2ace94c

          Eric Engestrom (12): .pick_status.json: Update to 74e4cda64b9d114321216eefe536f80644b0f0fd .pick_status.json: Mark dba71de5c63617677fe44558f995d35fad643413 as denominated .pick_status.json: Mark 5ea23ba659adc05ff75ca7a4c9d1bd01db889ddd as denominated .pick_status.json: Mark 34fd894e42ae1ec9d35bf9c4f05364b03dd4a223 as denominated .pick_status.json: Mark ddd767387f336ed1578f171a2af4ca33c564d7f3 as denominated .pick_status.json: Mark b9773631d3e79e2310ed0eb274b4dd9426205066 as denominated .pick_status.json: Mark 9fea90ad5170dd64376d22a14ac88c392813c96c as denominated bin/ fix commit list command .pick_status.json: Update to 0103f02acb10dcdea23461ba214307a6827a7772 gitlab-ci: update template to fix container build issues docs: add release notes for 19.3.5 VERSION: bump version to 19.3.5

          Erik Faye-Lund (2): util: promote u_debug_memory.c to src/util .pick_status.json: Update to 74e4cda64b9d114321216eefe536f80644b0f0fd

          Francisco Jerez (1): intel/fs/gen12: Fixup/simplify SWSB annotations of SIMD32 scratch writes.

          Ian Romanick (1): intel/fs: Correctly handle multiply of fsign with a source modifier

          Jason Ekstrand (3): isl: Set 3DSTATE_DEPTH_BUFFER::Depth correctly for 3D surfaces iris: Don't skip fast depth clears if the color changed anv: Parse VkPhysicalDeviceFeatures2 in CreateDevice

          Jordan Justen (1): intel/compiler: Restrict cs_threads to 64

          Jose Maria Casanova Crespo (1): v3d: Sync on last CS when non-compute stage uses resource written by CS

          Kristian Høgsberg (2): Revert "glsl: Use a simpler formula for tanh" Revert "spirv: Use a simpler and more correct implementaiton of tanh()"

          Krzysztof Raszkowski (1): gallium/swr: simplify environmental variabled expansion code

          Marek Olšák (3): radeonsi: don't wait for shader compilation to finish when destroying a context mesa: fix immediate mode with tessellation and varying patch vertices Revert "mesa: check for z=0 in _mesa_Vertex3dv()"

          Mathias Fröhlich (3): egl: Implement getImage/putImage on pbuffer swrast. egl: Fix A2RGB10 platform_{device,surfaceless} PBuffer configs. mesa: Flush vertices before changing the OpenGL state.

          Michel Dänzer (1): st/vdpau: Only call is_video_format_supported hook if needed

          Paulo Zanoni (1): intel/device: bdw_gt1 actually has 6 eus per subslice

          Peng Huang (1): radeonsi: make si_fence_server_signal flush pipe without work

          Rafael Antognolli (1): intel/gen12+: Disable mid thread preemption.

          Samuel Pitoiset (3): ac/llvm: fix 64-bit fmed3 ac/llvm: fix 16-bit fmed3 on GFX8 and older gens ac/llvm: flush denorms for nir_op_fmed3 on GFX8 and older gens

          Tapani Pälli (5): iris: fix aux buf map failure in 32bits app on Android mesa: introduce boolean toggle for EXT_texture_norm16 i965: toggle on EXT_texture_norm16 mesa/st: toggle EXT_texture_norm16 based on format support mesa/st: fix formats required for EXT_texture_norm16

          Timothy Arceri (1): glsl: fix gl_nir_set_uniform_initializers() for image arrays

          luc (1): zink: confused compilation macro usage for zink in target helpers.

          git tag: mesa-19.3.5
        • Mesa 19.3.5 Released To End Out The Series, Time To Move To Mesa 20.0

          Mesa 19.3.5 was released today for ending out the Mesa 19.3 series as the Q4'2019 OpenGL/Vulkan driver release stream.

          Mesa 19.3.5 has several Intel OpenGL/Vulkan driver fixes, a few AMD ACO fixes, and a couple RadeonSI updates too and other mostly mundane fixes. None of the changes appear to be particularly significant which is good considering this is a late stage point release to this driver series introduced last quarter.

        • AMD Is Hiring Another Lead Linux Kernel Developer To Work On Their Graphics Driver

          Should you be experienced in upstream Linux kernel development, AMD is hiring a lead Linux kernel developer.

          A recent AMD job posting puts AMD still looking for a lead Linux kernel developer after initially hearing of the position towards the start of the year. This Linux kernel developer position is on their GPU driver side for AMDGPU as well as focused on APU product support but appears to be less so about Zen/CPU efforts.

          AMD is looking for someone who is already well experienced on Linux kernel development and ideally having GPU programming experience with the likes of CUDA/OpenCL/HIP and machine learning frameworks.

    • Benchmarks

      • Linux Has This Awesome Benchmarking Tool You Probably Haven’t Heard Of

        Fellow benchmarking junkies, gather ‘round and listen to this truth bomb: we know Linux is incredible, and we know Linux gaming is incredible. But benchmarking those games without a “canned” benchmark like those found in Shadow of the Tomb Raider, Far Cry 5 and others? Well, that’s not so incredible. Fortunately, a developer known as FlightlessMango has answered the call with a fantastic tool called MangoHUD.

        MangoHUD is a Vulkan overlay that can be activated on any game running through Steam Proton (which deftly translates Microsoft’s DirectX graphics API to Vulkan — which Linux can understand). It can also be invoked in native Linux games using Vulkan, or through software like Lutris.

    • Applications

      • FocusWriter - Text editor gone minimalistic

        A few weeks ago, I was looking around for some nice Linux software, and I came across the home page of the person who had created the Whisker Menu for Xfce. Since I really like this one - I even included it as my favorite desktop menu in the 2018 best Linux apps compilation, I was intrigued by the other software in the repertoire, and decided to do some random testing. A program called FocusWriter drew my attention.

        Well, FocusWriter is meant to be a simple, straightforward, distraction-free advanced text editor, designed to provide those using it with maximum productivity. In other words, you don't waste time managing the software, you don't waste time getting your fleeting attention span diverted, you get stuff done. Well, that's the core idea on paper. As someone who writes books, I found the concept curious and inviting. Perhaps I could be doing something more effectively? Well, let's find out.

      • gThumb 3.9.1 Released with Various Changes, New App Icon

        A new stable release of gThumb, the GTK-based photo manager and image viewer for Linux desktops, is now available to download.

        I wrote about how to install gThumb on Ubuntu a couple of months back and figured that the latest update may be of interest to those of you who use it!

        gThumb 3.9.1 isn’t a game-changing release, but it touts a number of notable enhancements, bug fixes, and feature tweaks. It even has a spiffy new app icon (right) designed according to the new GNOME icons style.

        Elsewhere, the photo management app now lets you customise keyboard shortcuts to suit your tastes, and adds a shortcuts “cheat sheet”.

        Users can press ctrl + f1 with the app in focus to reveal it. This is part of a wider GNOME initiative to make keyboard shortcuts more discoverable among GTK applications.

      • Memcached 1.6 Released With Enhanced Performance For This Memory Caching System

        Most notable with Memcached 1.6 is the new meta protocol that is now more featureful than the now-deprecated binary protocol. This meta protocol is said to offer better correctness and performance. Memcached's networking code was also redone to allow automatic batching of response system calls. With the networking changes, when averaging 1.5 keys per syscall is said to potentially reduce server CPU usage by up to 25% and latency by at least a few percent.

    • Instructionals/Technical

    • Wine or Emulation

      • Between Wine and Darling

        Darling does for macOS applications what Wine does for Windows applications. It enables them to run on Linux. Many of them, anyway, because running graphical macOS applications on Linux via Darling is still a work in progress. I have a MacBook Air, but have no intention of running anything from the Mac world on my Linux machine. If you do, head on over to Darling’s home page for all the info you need to install and run it.

    • Games

      • Creepy Tale, an atmospheric mix of platforming puzzle with a sinister theme is out on Linux

        Creepy Tale from Deqaf Studio is a mix of adventure and exploration, platforming and some horror themes that all come together in a pretty great looking game. Originally released earlier in February, the developer announced this month that a Linux version is now up and live for everyone.

      • HyperRogue the fascinating and confusing non-Euclidean puzzle-roguelike has a big update

        HyperRogue might just melt your mind if you try to understand it, and it remains as one of the most unique puzzle-roguelike games around due to the non-Euclidean features.

        A brand new big update is out with HyperRogue 11.3 which includes some multiple new lands to explore, some of which has some advances features, plus new creatures to fight or try to run away from as you run through the warped hyperbolic plane.

      • Snake Core twists the gameplay from the classic Snake into a fun looking action game

        Orangepixel is at it again, putting a real unique spin on a classic. Snake Core is their newest game, revealed this week as a big upgrade to the retro Snake gameplay with a lot more action.

      • Avorion, the massive open world build-your-own spaceship adventure is out now

        Few space games have impressed me as much as Avorion, I'll make that clear right away. An open world space adventure, where you build your own ship block-by-block is out now and it's gorgeous.

        It's such an amazing mix of gameplay styles. It has the world exploration of titles like Eve Online and Elite, with the construction much more in-depth. You mine for the resources, taking those raw materials and build whatever design you want. A massive mining ship? A Borg-styled cube? A super-long missile ship? Whatever you want, you can pretty much do it as long as you have the resources.

      • Looking to follow more Linux gaming sources? Here's a few you might like

        At GOL we're big fans of community building and so sometimes it's good to give a shout out to others doing fantastic work for Linux gaming. Consider this your: "beginners guide to watching more Linux and gaming content across your favourite places".

        Before getting into it, just a reminder that we are on both YouTube and Twitch - so be sure to click on those buttons to like, subscribe and give over your firstborn.

        Every single one included in our lists below creates their content on Linux, so you should feel right at home if you're both new and old to the Linux community. Not all the channels cover just gaming so keep that in mind, we're just listing what we think do interesting work.

      • GOverlay - a new open source Linux app for managing overlays like MangoHud

        With the Vulkan API making the creation of Linux gaming overlays like MangoHud easier, having a way to manage them without editing a configuration file would be sweet - enter GOverlay.

        It's a new open source Linux application, started by developer Benjamim Góis. Their plan with it, is to give Linux users a simple to use tool to manage overlays like MangoHud which works with it now and post-processing effects like vkBasalt which will be added in future. The first initial release just went out as an example of what can be done, and it does work quite nicely already.

      • Untrusted is an upcoming online multiplayer social deduction game about hacking

        Untrusted is similar in idea to other social deduction games like Mafia/Werewolf (amongst plenty of others), only this time it's a bit more nerdy and technical with the hacking idea.

        Currently in development with it closing in an an Alpha-level released, the developer emailed about it as they're going to start more testing soon and they need your help. With full Linux support planned, it could be something amusing to try out.

      • Get political in the free retro platformer 'Super Bernie World' out now

        Super Bernie World is a new free and retro political platformer from a team of different indie developers and it's out now with a Linux version.

        Is this real? Yes, very much so. The Lead Developer and Producer is Emma Maassen from Kitsune Games (Lore Finder, MidBoss) and it's also made with the cross-platform FNA tech, with Ethan Lee doing the porting work as confirmed to us on Twitter.

      • 'Rocket League' March update patch notes end support for Mac and Linux

        While March 10 may be dominated by the launch of Call of Duty: Warzone, the popular "vehicular soccer" game Rocket League also gets a major update. There's a new "Ignition" series of items and the game will now let players trade in blueprints, but this is also the final update players on Mac and Linux will ever get.

      • secures funding to expand their cross-platform and cross-store modding service is a cross-store and cross-platform modding solution founded by Scott Reismanis (Mod DB, Indie DB) and it appears they're expanding to bring their fancy modding tech to everyone.

        Like the Steam Workshop, it allows you to subscribe to mods on various games and easily get user-generated content like maps, items and all sorts. However, since it's not locked-down it can work pretty much anywhere (and yes, Linux too!). Some games we have already use it like Descenders, 0 A.D, openXcom and others. is a "clientless API", allowing developers to easily add it into their games with their own UI so users don't need anything extra (no pesky additional launchers) and it also has plugins for Unity and Unreal. So games across Steam, GOG,, Humble Store and all the others could have access to the same modding community which is an awesome thing.

        Today, they've announced their first "seed round" (a form of early investment into a platform) with teaming up with Play Ventures for this.

      • Test Tube Titans has you create and mutate massive creatures to destroy everything

        Test Tube Titans is such an amusing game, allowing you to create freakish looking creatures, blast them with radiation and make them even more menacing. Then you send them out into the world to crush and destroy.

        You're some kind of researcher, although I use that term loosely. It's more like you're member in a team of completely mad scientists with far too much money and evil aims from whoever is funding you. Honestly, this might be one of my favourite new releases this year!

      • Advanced cross-platform benchmarking tool 'Basemark GPU' has a new build out

        Back in 2018 Basemark announced and released Basemark GPU, their advanced cross-platform benchmarking tool. Last week, they release a huge update to it. They said that "This new version enables for the first time direct and objective performance comparisons of vastly varied smartphones and computers.".

        It now supports testing across Android, iOS, Linux, MacOS and Windows so it's a pretty good all-in-one solution for some heavy testing. On the API side it runs with DirectX 12, Metal 2, OpenGL 4.5, OpenGL ES 3.1 and Vulkan 1.0 with different quality modes.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • Plasma Mobile Sprint 2020 in Berlin

          Like last year the Plasma Mobile team met in KDAB’s office in Berlin from 3rd to 9th February for the second Plasma Mobile sprint.

        • Krita 4.2.9 beta released!

          Much later than we wanted to, we’ve finally gotten the beta ready for Krita 4.2.9! One of the reasons it took so long is that an update to Python 3.8 broke scripting on Windows. When we finally had figured out that the reason wasn’t just that Python no longer looks for libraries in all the usual places, but also that the bindings to Qt, PyQt cannot be built in parallel, it was already February. And then, of course, Apple changed the way applications are notarized… And then we updated to a newer version of some of the libraries we build Krita on, and that broke all kinds of things. In short, we have had months of trying to get our builds working again!

        • 20.04 releases dependency freeze this thursday

          March 12: 20.04 Dependency Freeze

          March 19: 20.04 Freeze and Beta (20.03.80) tag & release

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • Molly de Blanc: Friends of GNOME Update February 2020

          We went to FOSDEM! You can read all about it on the Engagement Blog.

          While at FOSDEM, Molly de Blanc gave two sessions, one on ethics and IoT and one debate on licenses advancing social goals. Neil McGovern joined a discussion on the relevance of the Free Software and Open Source Definitions today.

          March is a very exciting month for us.

        • Umang Jain: Recapping my journey at Endless

          It seemed only yesterday when I joined Endless as a Papercuts Team member after being a GNOME contributor for a while. I was supposed to fix papercuts issues in the OS, package a few electron apps to flatpaks and overall work alongside the desktop team. I am happy to report that the experience almost 2 years now, has been a learning and a positive one that has made me a better developer and human by-and-large.

        • Gnome 3.36 will be Faster and Efficient than Previous Versions!

          Yes, they mentioned that the latest version of Gnome 3.36 will be more fast and efficient than the previous versions.

          Ubuntu 20.04 LTS is already loaded with Gnome 3.36 and getting ready to deploy in April 2020. We can expect that Ubuntu 20.04 LTS is faster than the previous one and more efficient than the previous version on Ubuntu distros.

    • Distributions

      • New Releases

        • 4MLinux 32.0 STABLE released.

          The status of the‭ 4MLinux 32.0 series has been changed to STABLE. Edit your documents with LibreOffice and GNOME Office (AbiWord 3.0.4, GIMP 2.10.18, Gnumeric 1.12.46), share your files using DropBox ‬91.4.548,‭ surf the Internet with Firefox 73.0.1 and Chromium ‬79.0.3945.130,‭ send emails via Thunderbird 68.5.0, enjoy your music collection with Audacious 3.10.1, watch your favorite videos with VLC 3.0.8 and mpv 0.30.0, play games powered by Mesa 19.3.0 and Wine 5.2. You can also setup the 4MLinux LAMP Server (Linux 5.4.17, Apache 2.4.41, MariaDB 10.4.12, PHP 5.6.40 and PHP 7.3.14). Perl 5.30.1, Python 2.7.17, and Python 3.7.5 are also available.

          As always, the new major release has some new features. Better support for Intel video cards (via Mesa 3D drivers with VDPAU emulation). PCManFM in 4MLinux can now create video thumbnails (using FFmpeg) as well as PS/PDF thumbnails (using ImageMagick). AV1 video decoding is finally available out of the box (via FFmpeg with the dav1d library). Good news for nerds! The following applications have been added for them: SciTE (source code editor), GNU nano (with spell checker), mg (originally called MicroGnuEmacs). Additionally, Vim (with gVim) is now available as a downloadable extension. ‭

        • 4MLinux 32.0 Arrives with Linux 5.4 LTS and LibreOffice 6.4

          Zbigniew Konojacki announced the general availability of 4MLinux 32.0, a new major release of this independent GNU/Linux distribution.

          Coming about three months after version 31.0, the 4MLinux 32.0 release is here to add better support for Intel graphics cards by coming preinstalled with the Mesa 19.3.0 graphics stack with VDPAU emulation.

          This release also updates the PCManFM file manager to create video thumbnails using FFmpeg and PS/PDF thumbnails using ImageMagick, and implements AV1 video decoding support via FFmpeg with the dav1d library.

        • Clonezilla Live Switches to Linux 5.4 LTS, Adds Bluetooth Support

          Clonezilla Live 2.6.5 comes about four months after version 2.6.4 and it’s based on the Debian Sid (Unstable) repositories as of March 9th, 2020, and uses the long-term supported Linux 5.4 kernel.

          This release ships with Linux kernel 5.4.19 by default, to offer better support for newer hardware. However, the switch to Linux 5.4 LTS was also probably made because it’s a long-term support branch, supported until the end of 2021.

        • Stable Clonezilla live 2.6.5-21 Released

          This release of Clonezilla live (2.6.5-21) includes major enhancements and bug fixes.


          The underlying GNU/Linux operating system was upgraded. This release is based on the Debian Sid repository (as of 2020/Mar/09).

          Linux kernel was updated to 5.4.19-1.

      • SUSE/OpenSUSE

        • openSUSE Summit Dublin and SUSECON

          The openSUSE Summit in Dublin, Ireland was scheduled for March 27-28. The event has been canceled due to travel bans. SUSECON is still scheduled for March 23-27, however it will be a digital event. The in-person meeting in Dublin has been canceled.

        • SLE 15 SP2 Beta – Weekly Updates

          We are not satisfied with the current quality of our builds in regard of the approaching Release Candidate phase. Many of the known issues are being tackle but our recent changes to some of our packages – details further down below – need extra care. Due to those changes we require a specific test cycle to ensure the quality of future RC milestone.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • Working towards equality on International Women’s Day

          Every year on March 8, we observe International Women’s Day - a global celebration of the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women, as well as a call to continue efforts towards gender equality. This year the organizers have selected "Each for Equal" as the theme, and I’ve been reflecting on what that means to me and what it means at Red Hat. The idea of intersectional equality is something that we’ve been exploring internally and we’ve increased our efforts to be more mindful. We are all working towards having a better understanding of the impact that we have on those around us - impacts that help spur us on our journey and impacts that slow our progress.

        • What makes a good Operator?

          In 2016, CoreOS coined the term, Operator. They started a movement about a whole new type of managed application that achieves automated Day-2 operations with a user-experience that feels native to Kubernetes.

          Since then, the extensions mechanisms that underpin the Operator pattern, have evolved significantly. Custom Resource Definitions, an integral part of any Operator, became stable, got validation and a versioning feature that includes conversion. Also, the experience the Kubernetes community gained when writing and running Operators accumulated critical mass. If you’ve attended any KubeCon in the past 2 years, you will have noticed the increased coverage and countless sessions focusing on Operators.

          The popularity that Operators enjoy, is based on the possibility to achieve a cloud-like service experience for almost any workload available wherever your cluster runs. Thus, Operators are striving to be the world’s best provider of their workload as-a-service.

          But what actually does make for a good Operator? Certainly the user experience is an important pillar, but it is mostly defined through the interaction between the cluster user running kubectl and the Custom Resources that are defined by the Operator.

        • Mainframe Breaches: A Beginner’s Defensive Strategy

          2019 was another year marked by lurid tales of data breaches, wrote RSM Partners’ Mark Wilson in this year’s Arcati Mainframe Yearbook. When it comes to getting our own house in order, he says the mainframe industry needs to get on the front foot in 2020.

          For too long, people have continued with the mantra, “our mainframe is safe, it’s buried in the heart of our data centre behind three firewalls”. We’ve almost buried our heads in the sand. We have to stop, think, and change our mindset. And that’s happening in some quarters: in the last year, more than 70 percent of my company’s work was related to mainframe security in some shape or form.

        • 13 reads to save for later: An open organization roundup

          For months, writers have been showering us with multiple, ongoing series of articles, all focused on different dimensions of open organizational theory and practice. That's led to to a real embarrassment of riches—so many great pieces, so little time to catch them all.

          So let's take moment to reflect. If you missed one (or several) now's your chance to catch up.

        • What’s new between the Mass Open Cloud and Red Hat Ceph Storage?

          We at Red Hat are proud to have the opportunity to work with so many interesting and innovative organizations. One such group is the Mass Open Cloud (MOC), which is a non-profit initiative that includes universities, government organizations and businesses, and provides reliable and cost effective storage to support both its public and private clouds built on Red Hat OpenStack Platform. In addition to OpenStack, the MOC has deployed Red Hat Ceph Storage as the storage foundation for its innovative research and big data analytics. This blog will showcase the importance of Ceph storage in the work Red Hat is doing with the MOC.

        • Test Days: Internationalization (i18n) features for Fedora 32

          All this week, we will be testing internationalization (i18n) features in Fedora 32.

      • Debian Family

        • Sparky 2020.03

          The March 2020 snapshot of Sparky 2020.03 “Po Tolo” of the (semi-)rolling line is out. It is based on the Debian testing “Bullseye”.

          Changes: – system upgraded from Debian testing repos as of March 7, 2020 – Calamares installer 3.2.20 – Linux kernel 5.4.19 as default (5.5.8 & 5.6-rc4 in Sparky unstable repos) – changed qCamera webcam application to Cheese – changed Vokoscreen to Vokoscreen-NG – removed packages: radiotray, imagemagic – GCC 10 is preinstalled, alongside to GCC 9 (default) – LibreOffice – Firefox 73.0.1 – Thunderbird 68.5.0

        • Sparky 2020.03 “Po Tolo” Launches Based on Debian “Bullseye”

          The March 2020 snapshot of Sparky Linux is now available for download, providing users with a series of welcome changes and improvements for the pre-loaded apps.

          First and foremost, Sparky 2020.03 “Po Tolo” is based on Debian Bullseye, and it upgrades the system from the Debian testing repos used on March 7 this year.

          The most notable improvements in this update is the update to Linux kernel 5.4.19 as default, but the unstable repos are now using kernel version 5.5.8 and 5.6-rc4.

          There are also several worthy app updates, starting with the Calamares installer, which is now at version 3.2.20, and ending with the most popular apps that we use on Sparky Linux. For example, Firefox has been updated to version 73.0.1, Thunderbird is now version 685.0, while LibreOffice is now pre-loaded by default.

          The developing team has also made changes to a number of packages bundled with Sparky 2020.03. For example, the qCamera webcam application has been replaced by Cheese, while the Vokoscreen package was changed to Vokoscreen-NG. There are two removed packages in this release, namely radiotray and imagemagic.

        • LLVM Clang 10 Can Build Over 95% Of The Debian Package Archive

          While the Debian archive continues to be built with the GCC compiler by default and will likely remain that way for the foreseeable future, Debian developers do continue experimenting with building the Debian archive under LLVM's Clang.

        • Sam Hartman: Forged Email

          Last night, a series of forged emails was sent to a number of places around the Debian, Ubuntu and Free Software communities. The meat of the mail was a fake message from me to debian-private with the subject "DebConf19 Diversity Girls." I didn't write such a message. I view this message as the latest installment in a campaign of attacks on Debian that attempt to undermine the project and take up the time of our members. I was expecting something like this: yesterday, I banned Daniel Pocock from the project.

        • Debian, Harassment, Abuse and Expulsions

          At the same time that Pell was mulling over his new status as a convict, false accusations of abuse were being distributed to hundreds of developers through the debian-private mailing list. The people behind that were Enrico Zini, Joerg Jaspert and Jonathan Wiltshire, the Debian Account Managers (DAMs). On Christmas Eve 2018, they stole the word abuse from boys like those at St Kevin's and used it for the latest Debian political conspiracy. In this distorted reality, a volunteer who asks Why? can now be accused of harassment and abuse.

          When I write that Zini, Jaspert and Wiltshire have plagiarised the word abuse, I'm not messing around. I wasn't one of the victims. If anybody wants to discuss this with me personally, I'm happy to do so but I'm not comfortable writing more on my blog.

          When I read the misleading things written by DAMs, therefore, it was particularly painful.

          Given what I've heard about abuse, I'll probably never be able to trust these characters again. By stealing the word abuse, they stole something that is very painful for people who know what abuse really means.

        • Can volunteers sue Debian?
          There was a recent discussion on debian-project about lawsuits involving Debian. Pierre-Elliott Bécue has written: Personally, we don't want to encourage anybody to make an un-necessary lawsuit but it also concerns us that false information has been presented about this issue. The false information is problematic because claimants may be deterred from pursuing legitimate claims but more importantly, because volunteers may not realize they are at risk of being sued.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Ubuntu 20.04’s zsys adds ZFS snapshots to package management

          Last October, an experimental ZFS installer showed up in Eoan Ermine, the second interim Ubuntu release of 2019. Next month, Focal Fossa—Ubuntu's next LTS (Long Term Support) release—is due to drop, and it retains the ZFS installer while adding several new features to Ubuntu's system management with the fledgling zsys package.

          Phoronix reported this weekend that zsys is taking snapshots prior to package-management operations now, so we decided to install the latest Ubuntu 20.04 daily build and see how the new feature works.

        • Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter Issue 621

          Welcome to the Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter, Issue 621 for the week of March 1 – 7, 2020. The full version of this issue is available here.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • That unstable ProtonVPN connection in the US

        One of the benefits of being a paying user of ProtonMail at the Visionary level is that use of the ProtonVPN service is included in your plan. At a time when good virtual private network (VPN) services cost about $10/month, that’s actually a good deal. What’s even better is that Proton Technologies AG, the Swiss company that develops the services, said ProtonVPN apps have been released, the source code audited and open-sourced.

        Being based in the USA, I primarily connect to ProtonVPN servers based in Europe. However, on occasions, I have to connect to the lone ProtonVPN server based in the USA. After more than one year of use, I’ve noticed that it is the most unstable ProtonVPN connection available. It’s almost always a given that when I connect to the US-based server, I’ll eventually have to deal with a failed connection or one that’s trying to reconnect.

      • Open Source Initiative bans co-founder, Eric S Raymond

        Last week, Eric S Raymond (often known as ESR, author of The Cathedral and the Bazaar, and co-founder of the Open Source Intiative) was banned from the Open Source Intiative (the “OSI”). Specifically, Raymond was banned from the mailing lists used to organize and communicate with the OSI. For an organization to ban their founder from communicating with the group (such as via a mailing list) is a noteworthy move.

      • Events

        • Chemnitzer Linux-Tage canceled

          The Chemnitzer Linux-Tage that was to take place March 14-15 has been canceled. "Whether we meet later this year or first in March 2021, we will discuss within the organization team in the next few days."

        • Linux and open-source conferences: List of what's canceled or going virtual

          In the next eight weeks, I had five business trips to cover open-source and Linux tradeshows. Now, I have none. Looking farther ahead, I have seven more shows this year. I doubt any of them will be held in real life.

          Nevertheless, shows in June onward are largely still happening. But I'd keep a close eye on their websites. Things can change quickly as the COVID-19 coronavirus infection numbers keep growing. It's the same for security conferences and pretty much all other technology shows.

        • DevCon 2020 | Kubernetes - Introducing through openSUSE MicroOS & Kubic

          DevCon 2020 is just about three weeks away and the hype is real.

          People know me as a friendly neighborhood SysAdmin and this year I am excited to announce that I will be co-hosting a presentation alongside Ish at the Developers Conference. It has been a long time coming, and as you might have noticed Ish has been building up to this one, starting with his Kubic Presentation at DevCon 2019 , openSUSE MicroOS in Production talk at openSUSE Conference 2019 and a workshop on Managing Pods & Containers at the openSUSE Asia Summit.

        • 2020.10 The Videos

          Alas, not all videos of the German Perl and Raku Workshop have been released yet, but these are the ones that are and have (at least some) Raku content:

      • Web Browsers

        • You-Get – downloader that scrapes the web

          A common complaint about YouTube is that to watch the material you need to use a web browser. Fortunately, some funky developers have created applications that allow you to bypass the web-only barrier of YouTube.

          You-Get is a small command-line utility to download media contents (videos, audios, images) from the web. This software lets you access material from YouTube, Youku, Niconico and a whole of other sites without ever leaving the console.

          You-Get is written in Python 3. It’s free and open source software.

        • Brave deemed most private browser in terms of 'phoning home'

          New academic research published last month looked at the phone-home features of six of today's most popular browsers and found that the Brave browser sent the smallest amount of data about its users back to the browser maker's servers.

        • Mozilla

          • Mozilla Firefox 74 Is Now Available for Download

            Expected to be officially released tomorrow, March 10th, 2020, the Firefox 74 web browser can now be downloaded for 32-bit and 64-bit systems from Mozilla’s FTP servers. The source code is also available for download for OS integrators.

            Firefox 74 isn’t a major release since Mozilla decided to push a new version every four weeks. However, it implements a new security feature to keep users safer while surfing the Internet.

            This is called RLBox and allows Mozilla to quickly and efficiently convert existing Firefox components to run inside a WebAssembly sandbox. RLBox is first available with Firefox 74 to Linux and macOS users.

          • Mozilla Making Progress With Offering Firefox As A Flatpak On Linux
          • Mozilla Launches Firefox 74 for Windows, Linux, and Mac

            Mozilla has just released Firefox 74 for all supported desktop platforms, with the new installers now published on the company’s servers and an official announcement expected any minute now.

            You can download Firefox 74 using the links at the end of the article.

            Since the release notes aren’t yet available, what we do know about Firefox 74 is that it’s the first release to disable TLS 1.0 and TLS 1.1, as Mozilla forces the switch to newer releases. More specifically, this means that if you update to Firefox 74 and you try to load a website that still uses these two old versions, you should get an error reading “Secure connection failed” on page load.

          • Mozilla Open Policy & Advocacy Blog: Mozilla Statement on EARN IT Act

            On March 5th, Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) introduced the Eliminating Abusive and Rampant Neglect of Interactive Technologies (EARN IT) Act. The bill would threaten free speech on the internet and make the internet less secure by undermining strong encryption.

            While balancing the needs of national and individual security in today’s fragile cybersecurity landscape is challenging, this bill creates problems rather than offering a solution.

      • SaaS/Back End/Databases

      • Productivity Software/LibreOffice/Calligra

        • TDF new Board of Directors

          The new Board of Directors of The Document Foundation has just started the two year term on February 18, 2020. Members are: Michael Meeks, Thorsten Behrens, Franklin Weng, Daniel Rodriguez, Cor Nouws, Lothar Becker and Emiliano Vavassori. Deputies are: Nicolas Christener and Paolo Vecchi.

          Five people have been elected for the first time to the Board of Directors: Daniel Armando Rodriguez from Posadas in Argentina; Lothar Becker from Karlsruhe in Germany; Emiliano Vavassori from Bergamo in Italy; Nicholas Christener from Bern in Switzerland; and Paolo Vecchi from Luxembourg (in Luxembourg).

          During the first meeting of the Board of Directors, the nine members have elected Lothar Becker as Chairman and Franklin Weng as Deputy Chairman. In the meantime, also the responsibilities and areas of oversight have been discussed and decided.

          At the same time, six people – who have served as board members and deputies during the previous term(s) – have left the board, but will continue their activity as TDF Members: Marina Latini, Chairwoman; Björn Michaelsen, Deputy Chairman; Eike Rathke, Member; and Jan Holešovský, Simon Phipps and Osvaldo Gervasi, Deputies.

        • QA/Dev Report: February 2020
        • LibreOffice 7.0's Qt5 Support To Offer HiDPI Scaling

          The support uses a DPI scaling approach similar to what is used by GTK in scaling of the Cairo surface. Developer Luca Carlon acknowledges "the current result is far from perfect, which you can see with the various graphics glitches" but at least isn't crashing or other woes. Hopefully by the time of the LibreOffice 7.0.0 debut in August this Qt5 HiDPI support will be better positioned. LibreOffice 7.0 so far has also been baking some performance improvements for the Impress and Draw components, enhancements to Writer's Navigator, and other enhancements for leading the open-source office suite race.

      • FSF

        • LibrePlanet 2020: In-person component canceled, but we'll see you online

          It is with deep sadness that we are canceling all of the in-person events associated with LibrePlanet 2020 due to the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak and our corresponding concern for the safety of this community. This includes the conference sessions on March 14 and 15, and all Free Software Foundation (FSF)-organized social events on March 13, 14, and 15.

          However, just because we won't be holding a conference in person this year doesn't mean that we've given up our fight to "free the future." Instead, LibrePlanet will be a fully free (as in freedom) virtual conference and livestream. We had an extremely exciting program planned, and we're going to try and maintain as much of that schedule as possible with all of the speakers who are willing and able to participate remotely. The resulting livestream will be run on and entirely accessible via free software, so that you can enjoy these amazing talks from the comfort of your home.

          With our small staff and the immense amount of other work to be done for free software this year, we decided that rescheduling to later this year would not be feasible, and that a virtual conference would be much more valuable.

          We changed our plans since our announcement last week because, over the weekend, the number of presumptive coronavirus cases reported in Massachusetts grew to 40. We also have been receiving a steady flow of speaker and attendee cancellations, indicating concern. The continuous spread of the virus, the daily changes to the situation, and its confirmed growth in the Boston area all made it impossible for us to sufficiently guarantee people's safety attending the event. With this issue out of the way, we can now focus all of our energy to deliver the best possible version of the event online.

        • LibrePlanet 2020: In-person component canceled

          LibrePlanet was scheduled for March 14-15 but it has been canceled. "However, just because we won't be holding a conference in person this year doesn't mean that we've given up our fight to "free the future." Instead, LibrePlanet will be a fully free (as in freedom) virtual conference and livestream. We had an extremely exciting program planned, and we're going to try and maintain as much of that schedule as possible with all of the speakers who are willing and able to participate remotely. The resulting livestream will be run on and entirely accessible via free software, so that you can enjoy these amazing talks from the comfort of your home."

        • GNU Projects

          • Getting started with Emacs

            Many people say they want to learn Emacs, but many of them shy away after the briefest encounter. It's not because Emacs is bad or even that complex. The problem, I believe, is that people don't actually want to learn Emacs; they want to be comfortable with Emacs traditions. They want to understand the arcane keyboard shortcuts and unfamiliar terminology. They want to use Emacs as they believe it's "meant to be used."

            I sympathize with this because that's how I felt about Emacs. I thought that all true Emacs users only ran it inside a terminal, and never used arrow keys or menus, much less a mouse. That's a great way to discourage yourself from getting started with Emacs. There are enough unique .emacs config files out there to prove that if there's one common strain among Emacs users, it's that everyone uses Emacs differently.

        • Licensing / Legal

          • What should fit in a FOSS license?

            What terms belong in a free and open source software license? There has been a lot of debate about this lately, especially as many of us are interested in expanding the role we see that we play in terms of user freedom issues. I am amongst those people that believe that FOSS is a movement thats importance is best understood not on its own, but on the effects that it (or the lack of it) has on society. A couple of years ago, a friend and I recorded an episode about viewing software freedom within the realm of human rights; I still believe that, and strongly.

            I also believe there are other critical issues that FOSS has a role to play in: diversity issues (both within our own movement and empowering people in their everyday lives) are one, environmental issues (the intersection of our movement with the right-to-repair movement is a good example) are another. I also agree that the trend towards "cloud computing" companies which can more or less entrap users in their services is a major concern, as are privacy concerns.

            Given all the above, what should we do? What kinds of terms belong in FOSS licenses, especially given all our goals above?

            First, I would like to say that I think that many people in the FOSS world, for good reason, spend a lot of time thinking about licenses. This is good, and impressive; few other communities have as much legal literacy distributed even amongst their non-lawyer population as ours. And there's no doubt that FOSS licenses play a critical role... let's acknowledge from the outset that a conventionally proprietary license has a damning effect on the agency of users.

            However, I also believe that user freedom can only be achieved via a multi-layered approach. We cannot provide privacy by merely adding privacy-requirements terms to a license, for instance; encryption is key to our success. I am also a supporter of code of conducts and believe they are important/effective (I know not everyone does; I don't care for this to be a CoC debate, thanks), but I believe that they've also been very effective and successful checked in as CODE-OF-CONDUCT.txt alongside the traditional COPYING.txt/LICENSE.txt. This is a good example of a multi-layered approach working, in my view.

            So acknowledging that, which problems should we try to solve at which layers? Or, more importantly, which problems should we try to solve in FOSS licenses?

            Here is my answer: the role of FOSS licenses is to undo the damage that copyright, patents, and related intellectual-restriction laws have done when applied to software. That is what should be in the scope of our licenses. There are other problems we need to solve too if we truly care about user freedom and human rights, but for those we will need to take a multi-layered approach.

            To understand why this is, let's rewind time. What is the "original sin" that lead to the rise proprietary software, and thus the need to distinguish FOSS as a separate concept and entity? In my view, it's the decision to make software copyrightable... and then, adding similar "state-enforced intellectual restrictions" categories, such as patents or anti-jailbreaking or anti-reverse-engineering laws.

      • Programming/Development

        • Fujitsu A64FX Support Added To The LLVM Clang 11 Compiler

          Fujitsu has contributed support for their high-performance A64FX ARMv8-based CPU cores to the LLVM Clang compiler.

          The Fujitsu A64FX is ARMv8.2-based with 512-bit SIMD via the Arm Scalable Vector Extensions (SVE), 48 cores, and has onboard 32GB of HBM2 memory. We should be seeing more servers / HPC systems coming to market this year with the A64FX processors. Among the announced users of the Fujitsu A64FX is Japan's Post-K exascale supercomputer.

        • Perl / Raku

          • Extracting coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 spike protein sequences with BioPerl

            As I started learning Perl I found out that there is a collection of Perl modules for bioinformatics tasks and it is called BioPerl. Intrigued I decided to try to use it for a simple task as it would help me in learning Perl. So the next question was: what task should I choose? Maybe download file with biological sequences, parse it and filter according some criteria? Thinking about this further I made a choice. I will work with sequences of infamous coronavirus which is more precisely named as SARS-CoV-2!

          • No Paws in this post (well maybe a litte)

            Well back to the PAWs game again. This is one group of actions that has really got me distracted.

            In my last post I manged to get 'SubscribeToShard' to work with my stream decoder though it is really just beta code for now. What first go me distracted was reading along in the Amazon doc I saw a bit about streaming an audio file.

            Well the last time I worked on this sort of stream was in the dieing days of the last century??

            This got me thinking and I went downstairs and dusted off my good old 2201 and fired it up thinking it might come in useful. Next I had to find some 'C' code and files I had from that time that I think I had on on 3.5 floppy in my upstairs closet.

        • Python

          • Productivity Mondays - Break Fear to Boost Productivity

            Another week, another edition of Productivity Mondays! This week I'm looking at how fear can help you be more productive and, no I don't mean the fear of not delivering on time... although that is a good motivator right? Actually no, that's a terrible motivator. This is all about empowering you to break down fear barriers by getting uncomfortable then using that as a motivator to kick some goals!

          • EuroPython 2020: Call for Proposals now open

            We’re looking for proposals on every aspect of Python: all levels of programming from novice to advanced, applications, frameworks, data science, Python projects, internals or topics which you’re excited about, your experiences with Python and its ecosystem, creative or artistic things you’ve done with Python, to name a few. EuroPython is a community conference and we are eager to hear about your use of Python. Since feedback shows that our audience is very interested in advanced topics, we’d appreciate more entries in this category for EuroPython 2020. Please help spread word about Call for Proposals to anyone who might be interested. Thanks.

          • efining Your Own Python Function

            Throughout the previous tutorials in this series, you’ve seen many examples demonstrating the use of built-in Python functions. In this tutorial, you’ll learn how to define your own Python function. You’ll learn when to divide your program into separate user-defined functions and what tools you’ll need to do this.

          • Python in GitHub Actions [Ed: Can we please stop pushing Python devs towards proprietary software traps of Microsoft with surveillance and censorship?]
          • Podcast.__init__: Open Source Machine Learning On Quantum Computers With Xanadu AI

            Quantum computers promise the ability to execute calculations at speeds several orders of magnitude faster than what we are used to. Machine learning and artificial intelligence algorithms require fast computation to churn through complex data sets. At Xanadu AI they are building libraries to bring these two worlds together. In this episode Josh Izaac shares his work on the Strawberry Fields and Penny Lane projects that provide both high and low level interfaces to quantum hardware for machine learning and deep neural networks. If you are itching to get your hands on the coolest combination of technologies, then listen now and then try it out for yourself.

          • Python main function

            In this tutorial, we will learn how to use a Python program's __name__ attribute to run it dynamically in different contexts.

          • Lists in python – Part One

            Lists in python are just like an array in Java, a python list is liked an apartment consists of many rooms where you will find a person living inside each of those rooms. The only difference between the Python list and the Java array is that Java is very strict when it comes to the type of element which is allowed to stay inside a particular type of array which means if that array belongs to the integer type then only integer will be allowed to stay inside that array, whereas Python will allow every data types to stay together inside a single list. For example, in the below program, we will put a string, a number, and a dictionary within that same list and then use those data types according to our needs.

          • Grid Search Optimization Algorithm in Python

            In this tutorial, we are going to talk about a very powerful optimization (or automation) algorithm, i.e. the Grid Search Algorithm. It is most commonly used for hyperparameter tuning in machine learning models. We will learn how to implement it using Python, as well as apply it in an actual application to see how it can help us choose the best parameters for our model and improve its accuracy. So let's start.

        • Shell/Bash/Zsh/Ksh

          • shellcheck: boosting the signal

            I like code-validation tools, because I hate defects in my software and I know that there are lots of kinds of defects that are difficult for an unaided human brain to notice.

            On my projects, I throw every code validater I can find at my code. Standbys are cppcheck for C code, pylint for Python, and go lint for Go code. I run these frequently – usually they’re either part of the “make check” I use to run regression tests, or part of the hook script run when I push changes to the public repository.

            A few days ago I found another validator that I now really like: shellcheck Yes, it’s a lint/validator for shell scripts – and in retrospect shell, as spiky and irregular and suffused with multilevel quoting as it is, has needed something like this for a long time.

            I haven’t done a lot of shell scripting in the last couple of decades. It’s not a good language for programming at larger orders of magnitude than 10 lines or so – too many tool dependencies, too difficult to track what’s going on. These problems are why Perl and later scripting language became important; if shell had scaled up better the space they occupy would have been shell code as far as they eye can see.

            But sometimes you write a small script, and then it starts to grow, and you can end up in an awkward size range where it isn’t quite unmanageable enough to drive you to port it to (say) Python yet. I have some cases like this in the reposurgeon suite.

    • Standards/Consortia

  • Leftovers

    • Without Getting Killed or Caught - Official Trailer
    • The Inside/Outside Strategy Revisited

      Strategy is a plan — a proposed course of action. Strategy demands the analysis of current conditions and statements of desired goals. But, the primary focus of strategy is “how.” How do we work the transition between what is and what ought to be?

      An effective strategy proposes how existing consciousness, resources, and capacities can achieve a range of political ends. Strategy tries to answer the hardest questions of all: what to do next and how to do it?

      While strategic thinking often relies on one political theory or other it is not the same exact thing as theory — its nothing as orderly or elegant as that.

      Inside/Outside Strategy (IOS) is an approach to organizing and movement building that emphasizes learning from and coordination with resistance movements that have political positions you do not completely agree with.

      IOS is an inclusive rather than an exclusive approach. A “both/and” attitude can help us resolve the static binaries and false choices that divide us and waste our energies. IOS is an alternative to the endless arguments and fragmentation that characterize the conventional left-wing pursuit of the “correct line.” IOS is particularly useful in organizing mass movements, coalitions, big-tent political parties, and revolutions.

    • David Talbot Speaks About His Newest Book Titled "Between Heaven and Hell" - The Project Censored Show
    • Losing Reality: Can We Get the Truth Back?

      Bill Moyers in Conversation with Robert Jay Lifton.

    • Science

      • GenoPalate and “personalized” DNA-based diet recommendations: More like astrology than science

        Companies should be careful where Facebook or Twitter or other social media companies target their ads. They might bring their dubious product to the attention of someone like me. This time around, I’m referring to GenoPalate, which is a company that claims to provide “personalized” diet recommendations based on your DNA. The more I started looking into the claims, the more dubious I found them.

    • Health/Nutrition

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Many New Voting Systems Aren’t Ready for Prime Time

          Put aside, for now, foreign meddling in U.S. elections, social media propaganda and partisan voter suppression. The newest emerging threat to elections in 2020 is new voting systems that have been insufficiently tested and phased in, but have been debuting in many of 2020’s presidential primaries and caucuses.

        • Security

          • Security updates for Monday

            Security updates have been issued by Fedora (seamonkey), Mageia (apache-mod_auth_openidc, binutils, chromium-browser-stable, dojo, firejail, gcc, glib2.0, glibc, http-parser, ilmbase, libarchive, libgd, libsolv, mbedtls, pcre, pdfresurrect, php, proftpd, pure-ftpd, python-bleach, ruby-rake, transfig, weechat, and xen), openSUSE (chromium, ovmf, python-bleach, and yast2-rmt), Oracle (curl, http-parser, kernel, sudo, and xerces-c), Red Hat (chromium-browser and kernel-alt), Scientific Linux (sudo), and SUSE (gimp, kernel, and librsvg).

          • Yahoo! and AOL: Where two-factor authentication makes your account less secure

            If you are reading this, you probably know already that you are supposed to use two-factor authentication for your most important accounts. This way you make sure that nobody can take over your account merely by guessing or stealing your password, which makes an account takeover far less likely. And what could be more important than your email account that everything else ties into? So you probably know, when Yahoo! greets you like this on login – it’s only for your own safety:

          • Demystifying Containers – Part IV: Container Security

            This series of blog posts and corresponding talks aims to provide you with a pragmatic view on containers from a historic perspective. Together we will discover modern cloud architectures layer by layer, which means we will start at the Linux Kernel level and end up at writing our own secure cloud native applications.

            Simple examples paired with the historic background will guide you from the beginning with a minimal Linux environment up to crafting secure containers, which fit perfectly into todays’ and futures’ orchestration world. In the end it should be much easier to understand how features within the Linux kernel, container tools, runtimes, software defined networks and orchestration software like Kubernetes are designed and how they work under the hood.

          • Cyber Security Today – Huge database on American homeowners left exposed, don’t fall for this certificate scam, check your Android version and Linux warning
          • The Internet Avoided a Minor Disaster Last Week

            Let's Encrypt's work is technical and happens in the background. But in a few short years it has helped make the internet much more secure on a fundamental level. Plenty of companies offer security certificates; Let’s Encrypt just took the audacious step of making them free. A week ago, it issued its billionth certificate.

            But that ubiquity also means that when a pebble drops in the middle of Let’s Encrypt’s pond, the ripples can travel a long way. On February 28, the pebble was a bug that threatened to effectively render 3 million sites nonfunctional in a matter of days.

          • Intel Chip Flaw Proves Unfixable Despite Patches

            "With the chipset key, attackers can decrypt data stored on a target computer and even forge its Enhanced Privacy ID (EPID) attestation, or in other words, pass off an attacker computer as the victim's computer," wrote Positive Technology in the report.

          • Positive Technologies: Unfixable vulnerability in Intel chipsets threatens users and content rightsholders

            By exploiting vulnerability CVE-2019-0090, a local attacker could extract the chipset key stored on the PCH microchip and obtain access to data encrypted with the key. Worse still, it is impossible to detect such a key breach. With the chipset key, attackers can decrypt data stored on a target computer and even forge its Enhanced Privacy ID (EPID) attestation, or in other words, pass off an attacker computer as the victim's computer. EPID is used in DRM, financial transactions, and attestation of IoT devices.

          • Universities ‘need joint security teams to counter cyber threat’

            Universities must create joint cybersecurity teams to protect themselves against ever more sophisticated hacking attempts, according to the vice-president of a Dutch university hit by a ransomware attack over Christmas that forced the institution to pay the equivalent of about €£175,000 to criminals.

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

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • Twitter will keep Jack Dorsey as CEO in deal with activist investor group

              The deal sees Twitter committing to buy back $2 billion worth of stock. It’s also naming two new board members: one from Elliott Management and one from Silver Lake, an investment firm that’s putting $1 billion into Twitter to fund the buybacks.

            • Cookie Monster: the Nuts and Bolts of Online Tracking

              Big Tech has become notorious for its hoarding of its users’ personal data, collected with great breadth and down to minute details. Billions have been paid by online platforms to settle legal charges over their invasive and reckless privacy follies. Facebook in particular is associated with this, especially after a series of major scandals involving leaks or hacks of personal data. But Google is inarguably the greediest of these companies in its data collection, to an extent that can surprise even jaded users. This makes sense economically, since the collection of data is a key part of the network effect of online search—more searches and click data mean algorithms that deliver more accurate searches, attracting more users and searches, in the familiar positive feedback cycle of what economists call “network effects.”

    • Defence/Aggression

      • Patterns of Occupied Palestine and Kashmir: Part 4 of Uncountable
      • There Have Been Nearly 80 Attacks in Afghanistan Since US Signed “Peace Deal”

        Since last month’s U.S.-Taliban peace plan, there have been nearly 80 attacks in Afghanistan. The violence could derail the deal that calls for U.S. troops to withdraw over the next 14 months. This comes as Afghan President Ashraf Ghani and top political leader Abdullah Abdullah both claimed that they won the presidential election at dual inauguration ceremonies today in Kabul, and members of the Taliban and the Afghan government were set to start direct negotiations on Tuesday. We speak with Washington Post reporter Craig Whitlock, who recently won the George Polk Award for Military Reporting for his in-depth investigation called “The Afghanistan Papers: A Secret History of the War.”

      • Defender of Europe 2020: a Dangerous Provocation on Russia's Border

        At this very moment thousands of US soldiers are disembarking from troop transports in six European countries and rushing toward prepositioned munitions around Europe, to deploy weapons as swiftly as possible.

      • U.S. Congress Moves to Restrain Pentagon Over Africa Drawdown Plans

        The Trump administration’s ongoing review is meant to ready the U.S. military for a new era of competition to confront Russia and China. The Pentagon has reportedly floated cutting several hundred troops in West Africa and leaving a base in Niger to redirect resources toward Russia and China.

        Lawmakers contend that such moves would be counterproductive, given those countries’ glowing clout and military footprints in Africa itself. “Any withdrawal or reduction would likely result in a surge in violent extremist attacks on the continent and beyond as well as increase the geopolitical influence of competitors like Russia and China,” Graham and Sen. Chris Coons, a Democrat, wrote in a letter to Esper in January. (Graham later denied a report that he threatened to make Esper’s life “hell” if he directed troop reductions in West Africa.)

        If passed, the new bill—called the U.S.-Africa Strategic Security Act—would throw yet another roadblock in front of any plans to redeploy Africom resources. The bill calls on the defense secretary to submit reports to congressional committees on the strategic and operational risks of withdrawing U.S. forces from the region.

      • Infineon’s Cypress Acquisition Wins U.S. Security Clearance

        Infineon Technologies AG’s $8.7 billion acquisition of Cypress Semiconductor Corp. was approved by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, a small step forward for deals in an industry where regulatory and security concerns have stalled consolidation.

      • Gamifying hate: How alt-right extremists recruit and mobilise online

        A couple of years ago, Ebner realised that the best way to understand online extremists is to infiltrate their hidden forums. She went undercover, joining dozens of groups, from white nationalists to radical misogynists, to see from the inside how they operate – and how to counter them. Ebner has documented her experiences in her book Going Dark: The secret social lives of extremists.

    • Environment

      • Energy

        • ‘Fossil Fuel Companies Knew’: Honolulu Files Lawsuit Over Climate Impacts

          The lawsuit, filed in Hawaii state court, is based on claims of nuisance, failure to warn, and trespass and alleges that the climate impacts facing the city stem from the oil companies’ decades-long campaign to mislead policymakers and the public on the dangers of fossil€ fuels.

        • Stock Market Turmoil Undermines Claimed Energy Dominance Benefits of US Shale Drilling

          This breakdown€ kicked€ off a global oil price war that left Wall Street reeling on Monday, threatening€ the already troubled U.S. shale oil and gas industry and challenging the resilience of the Trump administration's “energy dominance” theory that argues domestic shale oil production benefits national security and insulates the U.S. against the actions of other countries. Instead, relying on a shaky shale industry may have left the U.S. economy more vulnerable during times of€ crisis.

      • Wildlife/Nature

    • Finance

      • Facebook Still Can't Admit That Launching Libra During An International Privacy Scandal Is Idiotic

        One of the less charming aspects of Facebook is its executives' total inability to read the room. For example, any sensible company under Facebook's recent level of scrutiny would take the contrite and humble approach -- pausing most operations to insist they'd seen the error of their ways, pummeling home the claim that they were pausing expansion ambitions to ensure they were leaving no stone unturned to fix the problem and company culture (even if the company in question never genuinely intended such a thing).

      • How to Respond to the National Emergency

        The bank CEOs will approve of all these.€ 

      • 'A global recession is inevitable': Analysts warn of 'utter carnage' as oil crashes and global stocks tumble

        Analysts warned of a global recession Monday as a coronavirus-fueled sell-off dragged stocks, bond yields, and oil prices lower.

        Oil futures plummeted 26% on Monday, following their sharpest decline since the Gulf War in 1991 after OPEC and other major producers failed to agree to cut output last week. Global stocks followed the sentiment tumbling across the board, with European stocks down more than 6% and Dow futures pointing to an opening drop of 5%.

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • Merging Demopublicans
      • Trump Has Turned the 2020 Election Into a Political Version of “Survivor”

        Donald Trump filed his paperwork to run for reelection only hours after his inauguration in January 2017, setting a presidential record, the first of his many dubious achievements. For a man who relished the adulation and bombast of campaigning, it should have surprised no one that he charged out of the starting gate so quickly for 2020 as well. After all, he’d already spent much of the December before his inauguration on a ”thank you” tour of the swing states that had unexpectedly supported him on Election Day — Ohio, Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin — and visited Florida for a rally only a couple of weeks after he took the oath of office. In much the same way that Russian revolutionary Leon Trotsky once embraced “permanent revolution,” Donald Trump embarked on a “permanent campaign.”

      • Grandstanding, Lying, Praying It Away: Dear God and Hookers For Jesus, Please Send Help
      • Trump’s GOP Nominee to the Federal Election Commission Has Ties to Dark Money

        Senate Republicans will consider advancing President Donald Trump’s GOP nominee to the Federal Election Commission this week, potentially giving the watchdog the fourth member it needs to enforce election law.

      • President Trump as a Political Hit Man

        Trump’s perpetual reelection machine.

      • A Campaign Finance Solution Has Been Sitting on McConnell's Desk for a Year

        The 2020 election is shaping up to be the most expensive in American history. Ten years after Citizens United, our elections are awash with the money of mega-donors and corporations that drown out the voices of everyday Americans — with serious consequences for racial and economic justice.

      • The American People Have Already Lost the 2020 Election

        Donald Trump€ filed his paperwork€ to run for reelection only hours after his inauguration in January 2017, setting a presidential record, the first of his many dubious achievements. For a man who relished the adulation and bombast of campaigning, it should have surprised no one that he charged out of the starting gate so quickly for 2020 as well. After all, he’d already spent much of the December before his inauguration on a€ “thank you” tour of the swing states that had unexpectedly supported him on Election Day — Ohio, Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin — and visited Florida for a rally only a couple of weeks after he took the oath of office. In much the same way that Russian revolutionary Leon Trotsky once embraced “permanent revolution,” Donald Trump embarked on a “permanent campaign.”

      • There is hard data that shows "Bernie Bros" are a myth

        Mainstream pundits and politicians continue to obsess over the stereotype of the "Bernie Bro," a perfervid horde of Bernie Sanders supporters who supposedly stop at nothing to harass his opponents online. Elizabeth Warren, Hillary Clinton and New York Times columnist Bret Stephens have all helped perpetuate the idea that Sanders' supporters are somehow uniquely cruel, despite Sanders' platform and policy proposal being the most humane of all the candidates.

        The only problem? The evidence that Sanders supporters are uniquely cruel online, compared to any other candidates' supporters, is scant; much of the discourse around Bernie Bros seems to rely on skewed anecdotes that don't stand up to scrutiny. Many Sanders supporters suspect that the stereotype is perpetuated in bad faith to help torpedo his candidacy.

      • What Bernie Sanders Gets Right About Latin American Socialism

        When€ 60 Minutes€ (2/24/20)€ asked Sen. Bernie Sanders about his past support for aspects of Cuba’s socialist revolution, as well as for Nicaragua’s 1979–90 leftist Sandinista government, Sanders responded by saying he opposes what he described as the “authoritarian” features of the Cuban government, while noting that after the 1959 revolution,€  Cuba launched “a massive literacy program. Is that a bad thing?”

      • Not Just 'Two Old White Men,' This Democratic Primary Is Now a Serious Fight Between Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders

        When it comes to the issues and their agendas, the contrast between these two candidates could hardly be more stark.

      • Working Families Party, Justice Democrats, Other Progressive Groups Endorse Bernie Sanders Ahead of Key Contest in Michigan

        "In a race where the stark contrast couldn't be clearer between Bernie and Biden, it's critical for progressives to stay in the fight."

      • Biden’s Policies Propose Minor Changes in a Time of Crisis

        Former Vice President Joe Biden now has a plurality of delegates, following his strong performance on Super Tuesday, and polls suggest he is likely to dominate in the six states that have their primaries on March 10, and may even beat Bernie Sanders in Michigan and Washington, where polling shows recent spikes for Biden. And according to projections from FiveThirtyEight, Biden is now favored as the most likely candidate to win the nomination.

      • Time to Debate: How Bernie Could Destroy Biden in 120 Minutes Or Less

        Some serious advice for Sen. Sanders from somebody who is not a professional campaign strategist.

      • Don't Expect a Democratic President to Roll Back Trump's Policies

        America’s health care, its poor, its black and Hispanic minorities and the contest between Joe€ Biden and Bernie Sanders don’t amount to a hill of beans in the Middle East.

      • Boosting Electability Argument, Sanders Has Won Independent Voters in 13 Out of 16 Exit Polls So Far

        "The criteria by which we should judge any Democratic presidential candidate's electability is their popularity among Democratic-leaning independents and 'true independents' in swing states. And by that metric, Sanders excels."

      • Organizers Inspired by Sanders Are Changing the Landscape in the Rural South

        There’s been an organizing surge across the rural South since Donald Trump decisively won the region in the 2016 presidential election. Several coalitions, collectives, and grassroots networks have sprung up since then — some energized by Bernie Sanders’ 2016 primary run, others by Donald Trump’s victory, still others by local issues that pushed residents into political work, often for the first time.

      • How corporate lobbyists steer EU law-making

        Lobbyists have operated in Brussels for almost as long as the European institutions settled down there.

        In 1965, several Dutch newspapers reported with a sense of amazement how "pressure groups" had descended in the unofficial European capital to influence officials working for the European Economic Community (EEC) - the then seven years-old predecessor to the European Union.


        I saw this during my five years (2014-2019) as a staff writer and investigative journalist for EUobserver, and it is the subject of my latest book, published in the Netherlands and Belgium this week.

        One explanation is that the interests of corporate lobbyists often align with the possible political majorities in the complex EU.

        For an EU directive or regulation to become law, lawmakers need to find multiple sets of compromises: between conservatives and progressives; between North and South; between East and West; between big and small member states.

        The EU's internal market has proven to be the go-to foundation that allows for those compromises.

        Because what is the one thing that all EU governments agree on? The importance of economic growth. Jobs. Capitalism.

        So, member states are able to agree on an internal market where trade barriers are removed for carmakers, giving them the ability to get their required certifications anywhere in the EU.

        But there is less consensus on how to protect the environment and human health, and to give up sovereignty in those fields.

        So, member states for many years were unable to agree on pan-European oversight to prevent carmakers from cheating on emission tests.

        Even the 2019 EU directive banning the use of plastic in certain single-use products lists "contributing to the efficient functioning of the internal market" as one of its main objectives.

      • Russian lawmakers move to extend Putin's presidency to 2036

        State Duma deputy Valentina Tereshkova has proposed an amendment to Russia’s constitutional reform legislation that would reset the term clock to zero for all future presidential candidates.

      • Markets Shudder as Saudis, Russia Clash Over Oil

        A clash of the oil titans – Saudi Arabia and Russia – is sending shock waves through energy markets, with wide-ranging implications for consumers and oil companies, including those in the No. 1 producing country, the United States.

      • Why the Trump/Modi Relationship is So Dangerous

        In May 2019, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) led by Narendra Modi was reelected in India, a development many of us concerned about social, economic, and environmental justice denounced as very dangerous.

    • Censorship/Free Speech

    • Freedom of Information / Freedom of the Press

      • Brazil Refuses To Drop Bullshit Charges Against Glenn Greenwald; Appeal Judge's Ruling Throwing Out The Case

        Earlier this year, we wrote about the bogus "cybercrimes" charges brought against Glenn Greenwald in Brazil for his reporting on government corruption. As has been noted, a court and law enforcement had already said that Greenwald did not break any laws in his reporting, and had followed ethical journalistic guidelines. And yet, he was still charged with a crime for reporting on leaked documents, with prosecutors claiming that Greenwald's suggestions to the whistleblower on how not to get caught constituted a "clear role in facilitating the commission of a crime." This was clearly a charade, as the Bolsonairo government in Brazil seemed mostly to just want to intimidate Greenwald and the press away from reporting on what now appears to be an extremely corrupt government.

      • Trump Campaign Suing All His Media 'Enemies': Files Another Silly SLAPP Suit Over CNN Opinion Piece

        Just as the country starts dealing with what the hell it's going to be doing about Covid19, the President and his campaign have decided that now is the time to file laughable SLAPP suits against every one of the media entities on his usual thin-skinned enemies list. First it was the NY Times, then it was the Washington Post, and on Friday, it was the third in his triumvirate of media he loves to hate: CNN. As with the first two, this is yet another Charles Harder joint, and, as with the first two, this is suing over an opinion piece. Also, as with the first two, this is a laughably vexatious lawsuit, in which he is assaulting the very 1st Amendment he has sworn an oath to protect and defend.

      • Why Is Fox News Acting As State Media, Announcing Trump's Lawsuits Before They're Filed And Failing To Point Out How Frivolous They Are?

        As we've been pointing out, the Trump campaign, with the help of lawyer Charles Harder, has been suing a list of media enemies over the past week. There was the NY Times, followed by the Washington Post and (probably not) finally, CNN. We've detailed why each lawsuit is frivolous, and how they appear to be playing to Trump's base in a performative manner, attacking the credibility of the media which has done critical reporting on his Presidency, and doing so in a manner that potentially serves two purposes: gets his fans riled up about the media while simultaneously creating a chilling effect on fairly typical journalistic analysis of the Trump administration and campaign.

      • Trial of Programmer Accused in C.I.A. Leak Ends in Hung Jury

        An office of the Central Intelligence Agency outside Washington turned into a crime scene on March 7, 2017.

        WikiLeaks had just published a trove of confidential C.I.A. documents that revealed secret methods the spy agency used to penetrate the computer networks of foreign governments and terrorists.

        Investigators scrambled to find the culprit, seizing more than 1,000 devices from the C.I.A. as top-secret operations and computer networks shut down. Eventually, they arrested Joshua Schulte, 31, who worked as a computer engineer for the agency.

        But on Monday, in a muddled outcome for the government, a federal jury in Manhattan could not agree on whether to convict Mr. Schulte of the biggest theft of classified documents in C.I.A. history.

        After hearing four weeks of testimony, the jurors deadlocked on eight counts, including illegal gathering and transmission of national defense information. They did convict Mr. Schulte on two other counts — contempt of court and making false statements to the F.B.I.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • Turkey Ups the Stakes in Migrant Crisis

        Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan pressed the European Union on Monday for more help caring for Syrian refugees after EU officials accused him of “blackmail” for waving migrants through to Europe.

      • They Stripped Us of Our Clothes and Assigned Us a Number

        Scholarship on Indigenous affairs is sophisticated, contentious and radically revisionary. And Canadians, myself included, have not yet faced up to the fundamental meaning of the Canadian government (supported by the churches)’s all-out assault on Indigenous cultures, beliefs, values, language and forms of knowing.

      • Progressive Activist and Longtime Common Dreams Contributor Tom Turnipseed Dead at 83

        A self-identified "reformed racist' who spent decades fighting for progressive causes has died.

      • Push for Racial Justice Beyond Race Alone

        Today, liberals and many on the left reflexively cast “African American” and “working class” as antagonistic rather than overlapping categories.

      • He Sexually Assaulted Her After They Met on Bumble. Then She Saw Him on Tinder. Then Hinge.

        In the fall of 2018, Emily C. remembers telling Bumble that a man she met through its popular online dating platform had sexually assaulted her. The company didn’t respond, she says. Two months later, after seeing his profile photo on the app, she recalls the same report-no-response scenario playing out.

        Emily C., who requested her last name be withheld to protect her privacy, has matched with this man on other dating apps. Companies use geolocation to find matches for users, and he lives within a 3-mile radius of her Brooklyn apartment. When she spotted him on Tinder that year, Emily says she alerted the platform. Again, she never received a response.

      • How to Report a Sexual Assault to a Dating App

        Last September, Sue M., a 53-year-old who works in corporate communications, got matched with a man on the online dating platform PlentyofFish. The middle-aged restaurant manager asked her to dinner in Providence, Rhode Island. But their date would end before Sue got a chance to finish the Diet Coke she had ordered.

        Sue, who asked that her last name remain confidential, remembers her PlentyofFish date suggesting they leave. He drove her to a nearby parking lot, pulled her breasts out of her shirt and forced her to masturbate him. She says she yanked her hand away and convinced the man to let her go.

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

      • Wireless Carriers Are Training Consumers To Equate "5G" With Bluster And Empty Promises

        Buried beneath the unrelenting marketing for fifth-generation (5G) wireless is a quiet reality: the technology is being over-hyped, and early incarnations were rushed to market in a way that prioritized marketing over substance. That's not to say that 5G won't be a good thing when it arrives at scale several years from now, but early offerings have been almost comical in their shortcomings. AT&T has repeatedly lied about 5G availability by pretending its 4G network is 5G. Verizon has repeatedly hyped early non-standard launches that, when reviewers actually got to take a look, were found to be barely available.

      • NGO Community Urges ICANN to Scrutinize the .ORG Sale

        The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) is reviewing the proposed sale of the .ORG domain registry to private equity firm Ethos Capital, and ICANN has the power to stop the sale. EFF and several other organizations joined a public forum today as part of ICANN’s winter meeting to ask ICANN questions about how it plans to review the change of ownership to protect noncommercial users’ interests.

        To date, over 25,000 people and 839 organizations have signed a letter demanding a stop to the sale, which would let Ethos Capital raise domain registration fees and implement new enforcement mechanisms to unfairly censor NGOs. Under the Registry Agreement (RA), the document that describes how the registry must be run, ICANN has the ability to review the sale. If it has doubts about whether Public Interest Registry (PIR, the organization that runs .ORG) will responsibly manage .ORG after the sale, then ICANN can terminate the agreement.

    • Monopolies

      • America needs the Dixie Chicks' candor and audacity now more than ever

        The way right-wing America, in a surge of reactionary political correctness, canceled the Dixie Chicks is a legend, one that has calcified in the years since into a simplistic morality tale about the efforts to silence critics of the Bush administration and the Iraq War.

        The story goes like this: The Dixie Chicks were a popular and uncontroversial country-western band, up until the fateful day in 2003 that lead singer Natalie Maines told a crowd in London that she and her bandmates, all Texans, "do not want this war, this violence, and we're ashamed that the President of the United States is from Texas."

        What happened next: Right-wing America, in full pro-war fever, erupted in outrage. Dixie Chicks CDs were burned, radio stations pulled their songs, and while they put out one more album, the stress of it all caused the band to mostly peter out.

      • Patents

        • UK Patent Law Primer: Reading through Judge Stone’s New Opinion

          In the UK, Geofabrics just won a judgment of infringement against Fiberweb for its European Patent No. 2 430 238. The parallel U.S. Patent 8,978,995 has not yet been enforced. I thought I would walk through the decision looking at how UK Judge Mr. David Stone handled issues and their parallel US comparison.


          Insufficiency: The court examined three defenses under the umbrella of “insufficiency”: Uncertainty (sometimes called ambiguity); Classical insufficiency/lack of enablement; and Lack of plausibility. The statute provides that the specification must “disclose the invention clearly enough and completely enough for it to be performed by a [skilled addressee]”. 72(1)(c) of the Patents Act 1977.


          In the end, the court upheld the patent and found it infringed. The next steps in the case will be to consider remedies. The patentee has requested damages as well as injunctive relief.

        • Introducing Unified Consulting

          Many companies need customized solutions to help with patent portfolio analysis, landscaping, infringement, Standard Essential Patent (SEP) issues, and expert testimony. Introducing Unified Consulting (UC), a sister company to Unified Patents, which can meet the needs of companies through IP consulting and data services and support. UC provides innovative solutions to clients which have traditionally been unavailable or extremely expensive.

          UC will be led by Kevin Jakel and Craig Thompson, both of which bring decades of IP expertise to the new company. Craig will be leading UC’s consulting practice and data service offerings. Previously, he had been head of IP at Alcatel Lucent and head of IP Licensing for Americas for Nokia. Most recently, he was leading an international IP consulting firm called TNT IP.

        • Academic paper sheds light on severe limitations of Nokia's proposal of granting have-made rights to automakers: impact on vertical supply chain

          In recent days, two of my automotive industry contacts have drawn my attention to what one company's chief patent counsel described as a "remarkable" paper on standard-essential patent (SEP) licensing issues: SEP Licensing After two Decades of Legal Wrangling: Some Issues Solved, Many Still to Address by Damien Geradin (Professor of Competition Law & Economics, Tilburg University; Visiting Professor, University College London; Founding Partner, Geradin Partners; and a member of the European Commission's SEP Expert Group).

          The 22-page document provides an outline of how European Union case law (with additional references to a few key U.S. decisions) has evolved over the past two decades, going back to the time when Nokia, then far more interested in making products than generating patent licensing revenues, was a complainant against Qualcomm. Times have changed, and Nokia is now an aggressive monetizer of SEPs and the target of antitrust complaints.

          The part I found most interesting in Professor Geradin's paper deals with Nokia--or, more specifically, a structure Nokia proposes in lieu of a license to component makers that would protect the downstream by means of patent exhaustion. I'm not aware of a similar analysis of Nokia's proposal of a "have-made right" and the severe limitations inherent to it having been conducted before.

        • One more blow to those misinterpreting the Enercon decision of the Supreme Court – infringement lies despite a pending post grant

          Recently the Hon’ble Delhi High Court in its judgement of CDE Asia Limited v. Jaideep Shekhar and Anr. CS (COMM) 124/2019 has interpreted and clarified the observations made by the Hon’ble Supreme Court in its judgement of Alloy’s Wobben and Anr. Vs. Yogesh Mehra and Ors.

          The Hon’ble Supreme Court had observed in the aforesaid judgement that only the culmination of procedure contemplated under section 25 (2) of the Patents Act i.e. post grant opposition bestows the final approval of the patent. Further, the Supreme Court also observed that it is unlikely and quite impossible, that an “infringement suit” would be filed while the proceedings under Section 25(2) are pending, or within a year of the date of publication of the grant of a patent.

          The Hon’ble Delhi High Court clarified this position of the Hon’ble Supreme Court and held that the aforesaid judgement was in relation to the fact that two parallel remedies cannot be invoked by a party which may result in conflicting decisions.

          Further, the Court clarified that as per the Hon’ble Supreme Court, it was unlikely and quite impossible that an infringement suit would be filed while the proceedings under Section 25(2) of the Patent Act are pending or within a year of the date of publication of the grant of a patent. However, the Hon’ble Supreme Court did not discuss the situation where infringement of the suit patent occurs or is alleged soon after the grant of patent. Moreover, the same was not even an issue before the Supreme Court, and thus, the Supreme Court did not hold that a suit for infringement within one year of grant of the patent would not be maintainable and would be liable to be rejected as premature.

        • Software Patents

          • Public’s Right to Access Court Proceedings Calls For Livestreaming Hearing in Notorious Patent Troll Case

            Washington, D.C.—The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) today urged a panel of judges at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit to take a stand for open access to judicial proceedings and allow the public to watch by video an upcoming hearing in a patent case involving Apple.EFF is fighting for public access in a lawsuit brought by Uniloc, which has sued hundreds of companies, including Apple, for infringing patents. Uniloc wants to keep certain court documents about how it operates out of the public domain. In this case, against Apple, Uniloc sought to seal documents that could reveal whether it actually owns the patents at issue, and therefore, whether it even has the right to sue anyone for infringing them.A district court judge correctly refused to seal Uniloc’s documents, in response to an EFF request.

      • Copyrights

        • Viral Marketing Firm is Pirating Netflix, Disney+, Prime Video & HBO Go

          A viral marketing company is engaging in blatant copyright infringement as part of a new campaign. MSCHF has launched, a 'pirate radio' site that is currently streaming shows from Netflix, Disney+, HBO Go and others with zero permission from copyright holders. The company informs TF that once one network shuts it down, five others will take their place....

        • Man Who Leaked Pre-Release Movies Online Sentenced to 27 Months Prison

          A UK man who leaked pre-release movies online has been sentenced to 27 months in prison after pleading to one count of conspiracy to defraud. Malik Luqman Farooq of Halifax was part of a group that obtained copies of movies from a post-production company in the United States. In 2018, Farooq was indicted by a federal grand jury in a related case that is yet to go to trial the US.

        • The Pirate Bay Suffers Extended Downtime

          The Pirate Bay's main domain has been inaccessible to most people for more than two days. There is no official word from the site's operators, but history shows that the outage is likely being caused by a technical issue. Meanwhile, some of the site's many proxies and its official Tor domain are still working fine.

        • Led Zeppelin did not steal Stairway To Heaven riff, appeals court rules

          On Monday, a panel of 11 judges revealed their 9-2 decision that Stairway To Heaven did not infringe the copyright of the Spirit song.

        • Led Zeppelin Land Major Victory in ‘Stairway to Heaven’ Copyright Case

          The decision overturned the “inverse ratio rule” precedent, which has largely controlled copyright cases in the 9th circuit for the past 43 years.

        • Led Zeppelin Prevails in ‘Stairway to Heaven’ Appeal

          In 2016, a jury in the “Stairway” case found that Jimmy Page and Robert Plant of Led Zeppelin, the song’s two credited writers, did not infringe on the copyright of “Taurus.” The band’s lawyers argued that what little the two songs had in common — a chord progression and a descending chromatic scale — were musical elements too basic to be protected by copyright. A musicologist testifying on Led Zeppelin’s behalf said that similar patterns have popped up in music for over 300 years.

        • Bold: Matthew Storman, Sans Lawyer, Counter Sues Nintendo For False Allegation Of Copyright Infringement

          The ongoing fight between Nintendo and RomUniverse continues! While most of the targets of Nintendo's ire in its war on ROM sites folded to the company fairly quickly, RomUniverse's Matthew Storman boldly chose to fight in court. That led to Nintendo suing the site for copyright infringement. Storman attempted to crowdsource his legal defense, failed at that, and has been fighting this battle without legal representation. That likely explains the site's lame argument that somehow first sale doctrine makes the Nintendo ROMs on its site non-infringing, as though owners of game cartridges could copy the content to the site and resell or give them away there. The court saw through Storman's argument and allowed the trial to move forward.

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If they control the narrative (or buy the narrative), they can do anything
Links 19/04/2024: Israel Fires Back at Iran and Many Layoffs in the US
Links for the day
Russell Coker & Debian: September 11 Islamist sympathy
Reprinted with permission from
Sven Luther, Thomas Bushnell & Debian's September 11 discussion
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G.A.I./Hey Hi (AI) Bubble Bursting With More Mass Layoffs
it's happening already
Over at Tux Machines...
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IRC Proceedings: Thursday, April 18, 2024
IRC logs for Thursday, April 18, 2024
Coroner's Report: Lucy Wayland & Debian Abuse Culture
Reprinted with permission from
Links 18/04/2024: Misuse of COVID Stimulus Money, Governments Buying Your Data
Links for the day
Gemini Links 18/04/2024: GemText Pain and Web 1.0
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Gemini Links 18/04/2024: Google Layoffs Again, ByteDance Scandals Return
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Gemini Links 18/04/2024: Trying OpenBSD and War on Links Continues
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IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, April 17, 2024
IRC logs for Wednesday, April 17, 2024
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day