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Links 12/10/2020: New Linux Release, Pitivi 2020.09

  • GNU/Linux

    • 9to5Linux Weekly Roundup: October 11th, 2020

      The second installment of the 9to5Linux Weekly Roundup, for the week ending October 11th is here to keep you guys up to date with the most important things that have happened this week in the Linux world.

      This week has been a bit slow but there were some interesting releases and announcements, and you can check them all out below. But first, I’ll kick off the 9to5Linux Weekly Roundup for October 11th, 2020, with a big THANK YOU to the new donors and some important website changes.

    • Linux Weekly Roundup #99

      Hello and welcome to this week's edition of our Linux Roundup!

      There were no major Linux releases this week but we continued to look at Ubuntu 20.10 releases, as well as the remixes, so we have plenty of releases for you.

      KDE Plasma 5.20 Beta has been released and it is a big release!

    • This Week in Linux: GNOME 3.38.2, New Kubuntu Laptop and More

      Here’s the Linux Weekly roundup series, curated for you from the Linux and opensource world on application updates, new releases, distribution updates, major news, and upcoming highlights.

      This week there has been plenty of app updates, distribution release announced. In this weekly update series, we cover all the happenings with links and quick summary for you so that you can stay updated and wrap up your week with a summary.

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • Top 10 Laptops that Ship with Linux Pre-installed [2020 Edition]

        If macOS or Windows-based systems no longer intrigue you, laptops that come with Linux pre-installed are definitely something to check out before deciding. While the Linux OS may have a bit of notoriety for being technical and complicated, tons of Linux distributions are perfect for beginners and will make the transition much easier. Also, Linux is open-source, free, and more secure. Being mainstream and popular makes Windows a target for viruses and cyber threats.

        You can install Linux on almost all laptops, but even better is that you can get it pre-installed on the laptops we will list here. Without Dell’s exception, there aren’t any popular laptop vendors that provide Linux as the base operating system. Leaving us with smaller manufacturers who have built a specific niche for themselves as they exclusively offer the best laptops with Linux pre-installed.

      • Acer Chromebook Spin 713 review: You can't get a better Chromebook than this for $629 - About Chromebooks

        For most of the last few weeks, I’ve been using an Acer Chromebook Spin 713 review unit. I was impressed by this convertible Chromebook just from the first impressions. And now? Everyday usage has confirmed my initial experience: I don’t think you can buy a better Chrome OS laptop for $629.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • KDE Connect: It'd Be Cool To Respond To SMS On Linux - YouTube

        KDE Connect is one of those applications that seems like a really awesome idea, I'd love to recieve my phone notifications on my desktop and respond to sms without having to touch my phone but in it's current form the implementation is effectively broken due to updates that happen to Android. Some people have far more luck with this than I do but I can only show what I actually see.

      • Linux that looks like Mac - YouTube

        Let's make Linux look exactly like macOS! This has been tested in Ubuntu, PopOS, and other GNOME-based distributions.

      • GNU World Order 375

        The music players **mpg123** and **moc** (**mocp**), plus the popular **mc** file manager and **most** pager.

      • Linux Action News 158

        NextCloud makes some significant changes, and we share our reaction; IBM is planning to split into two, but we have some questions, and Firefox may soon display sponsored "top sites."

        Plus Nvidia's Jetson Nano release and the freaky future of low-level AI, and our thoughts on Coninbase's recent news.

    • Kernel Space

      • Oracle Linux 7 Update 9 Released with Kernel 5.4 and More

        Oracle announced the immediate availability of Oracle Linux 7 Update 9 which is an enterprise-grade Linux distribution mainly for servers built from Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL).

      • Linux Kernel 5.9 Is Now Available for Download, Here’s What’s New

        Linus Torvalds announced today the release and general availability of the Linux kernel 5.9, a major version that introduces various new features and improvements, along with new and updated drivers. Development of Linux kernel 5.9 kicked off about two months ago when Linus Torvalds announced the first Release Candidate (RC) milestone.

        After no less than eight RCs, the final release is out now and it should be coming to some of the most popular rolling release distributions in the next few weeks. As for the highlights of Linux 5.9, there’s support for the Unicore architecture, Zstandard (Zsdt) compression support for building x86 kernels, full support for asynchronous buffered read operations in the io_uring subsystem, as well as a new rescue= mount option and various performance improvements for the Btrfs file system.

      • Linux Kernel 5.9 Released. This is What's New.

        A new, stable Linux Kernel 5.9 is announced by Linus Torvalds. This kernel release is a big release in terms of hardware, graphics, and other performance updates.

      • Linux Lite Users Are the First to Try Linux Kernel 5.9, Here’s How

        Linux kernel 5.9 was announced a few hours ago by Linus Torvalds and, as expected, it brings a bunch of updated and new drivers for better hardware support, along with several new features and various improvements.

        If you need any of the features implemented in Linux kernel 5.9, you can now install it on your Linux Lite computer in just a few minutes, following the next instructions. However, if you don’t need them and your Linux Lite installation is working perfectly, you should refrain from installing it.

      • The 5.9 kernel has been released

        Linus has released the 5.9 kernel. "Ok, so I'll be honest - I had hoped for quite a bit fewer changes this last week, but at the same time there doesn't really seem to be anything particularly scary in here. It's just more commits and more lines changed than I would have wished for." Some of the significant features in this release are: x86 FSGSBASE support, capacity awareness in the deadline scheduler, the close_range() system call, proactive compaction in the memory-management subsystem, the rationalization of kernel-thread priorities, and more. See the KernelNewbies 5.9 page for more details.

      • Linux 5.9 Boosts CPU Efficiency With FSGSBASE Help
      • Linux 5.9 Boosts CPU Performance With FSGSBASE Support - Slashdot

        FSGSBASE support in Linux "has the possibility of helping Intel/AMD CPU performance especially in areas like context switching that had been hurt badly by Spectre/Meltdown and other CPU vulnerability mitigations largely on the Intel side," Phoronix wrote back in August.

      • Linux 5.9
        Ok, so I'll be honest - I had hoped for quite a bit fewer changes this
        last week, but at the same time there doesn't really seem to be
        anything particularly scary in here. It's just more commits and more
        lines changed than I would have wished for.

        The bulk of this is the networking fixes that I already mentioned as being pending in the rc8 release notes last weekend. In fact, about half the patch (and probably more of the number of commits) is from the networking stuff (both drivers and elsewhere).

        Outside of that, the most visible thing is a reinstatement of the fbdev amba-clcd driver - that's a noticeable patch, but it's basically just mainly a revert.

        The rest is really really tiny (mostly some other minor driver updates, but some filesystem and architecture fixes too). There's just a bit more of those kinds of tiny details than there should be fo this kind of last delayed week. But since nothing in there gives me any particular reason to delay another week, here we are.

        That obviously means that the merge window for 5.10 is open, and I'll start doing those pulls tomorrow. I already have a couple of pulls pending, but I hope people take the time to just do one last test of the final 5.9 release.

        So go get it.


      • Linux 5.9 Release - Main Changes, Arm, MIPS & RISC-V Architectures

        Linux 5.8 added basic support for IBM POWER10 Processor, support for inline encryption hardware usually found in storage devices, the Kernel Concurrency Sanitizer (KCSAN) dynamic data race detector for kernel space, and more.

      • Linux 5.9 Released With Initial AMD RDNA 2 GPU Enablement, Other New Hardware Support

        Linus Torvalds has just released Linux 5.9 as stable.

        Linux 5.9 is out as the 2020 autumn kernel update. Linux 5.9 has a number of exciting improvements including initial support for upcoming Radeon RX 6000 "RDNA 2" graphics cards, initial Intel Rocket Lake graphics, NVMe zoned namespaces (ZNS) support, various storage improvements, IBM's initial work on POWER10 CPU bring-up, the FSGSBASE instruction is now used, 32-bit x86 Clang build support, and more. See our Linux 5.9 feature overview for the whole scoop on the many changes to see with this kernel.

      • The AMD Radeon Graphics Driver Makes Up Roughly 10.5% Of The Linux Kernel

        Given the impending release of Linux 5.9, I was having some fun with cloc today looking at the current lines of code count for this near-final Linux 5.9 kernel state.

        As of today in Linux 5.9 Git, the kernel is about 20.49 million lines of code plus another 3.58 million lines of code comments and another 3.72 million blank lines. Or all in, Linux 5.9 comes in at roughly 27.81 million lines distributed among some fifty-nine thousand source files.

      • AMD Hopes To Get Sensor Fusion Hub Driver For AMD Laptop Gyroscopes And Other Sensors Into Linux 5.10

        AMD's Sandeep Singh has submitted yet another revision of AMD's Linux HID driver for the Sensor Fusion Hub hardware in all AMD laptops based on Ryzen processors. That makes it eight in total. This could be the lucky revision that makes it into the Linux kernel when the Linux 5.10 merge window opens up on Monday.


        The fourth revision of the Fusion Hub Driver was rejected by Intel's Linux driver engineer Andy Shevchenko who pointed out a long list of issues and concluded that "it requires a bit of work".

        AMD's Sandeep Singh didn't give up after being absolutely crushed by the competitions Linux driver engineer. He optimistically submitted a fifth revision with hopes that this would be the one. Andy Shevchenko had several objections and Sandeep Singh had to go back to the drawing board.

      • Arm Memory Tagging Extension Ready For Linux 5.10

        While the Linux 5.9 kernel isn't even being released until later today, the ARM64 architectural changes have already been mailed in ahead of the opening of the Linux 5.10 merge window.


        The ARM64 code in Linux 5.10 is also bringing enhancements to Pointer Authentication as another security feature. There is also ASID pinning, memory management updates, support for prefetchable PCI BARs, and other code cleanups going into this next kernel.

      • There Are Many Changes To Look Forward To With The Linux 5.10 Kernel - Phoronix

        The Linux 5.9 kernel is expected for release this evening which will in turn kick off the Linux 5.10 merge window for the next two weeks. As we've already been closely monitoring the various "-next" development trees in recent weeks of material building up for this next cycle, here is a look at a portion of what's to come for this late 2020 kernel.

      • Intel Continues Prepping PKS For The Linux Kernel (Protection Keys for Supervisor) - Phoronix

        Intel engineers continue working on "Protection Keys for Supervisor" support for the Linux kernel as a feature coming to a future generation of processors (presumably Sapphire Rapids). The initial users of this PKS support will be helping to protect persistent memory as well as adding safeguards to Trusted Keys within the Linux kernel.

        Protection Keys for Supervisor (PKS) is akin memory protection keys (PKU / PKEYs) that has been supported since 1st Gen Xeon Scalable processors while the "supervisor" focus is in reference to the elevated ring with the kernel. The PKS support will presumably be Sapphire Rapids, based on the recent bring-up of other features coming to that Ice Lake Xeon successor due out around the end of 2021.

    • Applications

      • Best Note Taking Apps for Linux

        This article will cover useful note taking apps for Linux. The list will include free and open source apps, developed using Linux native UI toolkits like GTK and Qt.

        Most of the apps listed above have been in development for a long time and they are quite stable. If you are looking for desktop note taking apps with local or cloud synchronization, these are some really solid choices

      • Pitivi 2020.09 — Hocus focus – Pitivi

        Since the 2014 fundraiser and until Pitivi 0.999 released in 2018, we included only critical features to focus on quality. For example, the proxy functionality which allows precise editing by seamlessly using the optimized media when the original media format is not supported officially.

        Life and GSoC happens and we developed many good features over this period. Most of these originate from the Google Summer of Code program in which we took part, but not only. The new features came with accompanying unit tests and they have been merged only after careful code reviews. Even so, we kept them in the development branch.

        This approach led to extra work for taking care of two branches. In addition to a “stable” branch out of which we were making releases, we also maintained a “development” branch in which we were merging cool features. Luckily, despite not much appearing to be happening with the project due to releases containing only bug fixes, contributors kept showing up, and not only because of GSoC.

        Since the previous release we came to our senses and reconsidered the earlier decision. Pitivi 2020.09 includes a ridiculous number of new features, for your delight. Read the full list below and get ready to be blown away by what our contributors built.

      • Pitivi 2020.09 Video Editor Released With Better Stability, Many New Features - Phoronix

        Pitivi 2020.09 is now available (well, actually, was tagged ten days ago but only announced today) as the first release for this GNOME video editor solution since Pitivi 0.999 back in August 2018.

        Given two years have passed since the previous Pitivi release, Pitivi 2020.09 is bringing with it many improvements and quite significantly better stability. Pitivi 2020.09 ships with "a ridiculous number" of new features, many bugs have been fixed with the GStreamer Editing Services, and more. They now feel GStreamer Editing Services has reached "1.0" status even though they aren't officially declaring such a version.

      • 3 Best free video players to download for Linux Distros

        Generally, we use a built Video Player available with an operating system in Linux. However, those are bing upon videos, movies, or deal in video editing they should look for other good quality free or open-source video players to use on Linux. Here, we are listing some of the best Video Plays with not only nice UI but also all features that one needs.

        In reality, there are so many video players available, you will get various articles showing the top 10 or 15 best open source video player lists but most of them either outdated or just the same player with a different front end. What I think the video player comes along with Linux OS Desktop environments such as with GNOME, KDE, and more are enough to handle various kinds of videos. Still, if someone wants a third party Media player then VLC Media is the best to go, nothing else you need. However, yet apart from VLC, I have given two more options in case someone wants to try something else. See: Install MystiQ Video Converter on Ubuntu 20.04

      • Liferea 1.3.3 Released with Webkits Intelligent Tracking Protection [PPA]

        Liferea, Linux Feed Reader, released version 1.3.3 a few days ago with a lot of improvements. Here’s how to install it in Ubuntu 18.04, Ubuntu 20.04.

    • Instructionals/Technical

    • Games

      • 505 Games confirm that Indivisible is finished due to Lab Zero Games imploding

        With all the issues surrounding Lab Zero Games and the owner Mike Zaimont, after most of the team left and the rest were let go - 505 Games have given a statement.

        Their statement concerns Indivisible, since Lab Zero are basically no more the publisher was forced to clarify what will happen to it. In short: it's finished. In the statement on Steam they confirmed that "apart from content that is already in submission, there will unfortunately be no more production on the game". This means the planned Guest Characters and Backer-created characters will no longer be coming.

      • Thrive, the free and open source evolution game has a massive new release up

        After switching to Godot Engine back in May, things seem to be going really well for the free and open source evolution sim Thrive, as they have a huge release out now.

        With a lot of work that went into it, Thrive 0.5.2 brings back a proper tutorial mode so you can get to learn it properly now. This goes over movement, resource collection, how to evolve and more. Hopefully this will allow more people to actually see what it offers.

      • Vircadia is an in-development free and open source decentralized 3D social space

        Remember social games like Second Life? Vircadia, was created from a failed spiritual successor to it and it's free and open source too. Originally known as Project Athena, they've recently begun making some public announcements to bring more attention to it.

        The idea is to have a big shared 3D social space that supports both normal and Virtual Reality PC hardware with support for Linux, macOS, Windows and Android. Unlike other social stuff, since it's open source it can't just be shut down and anyone can use it and it allows people to create their own avatar, their own worlds and much more.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • Now and Then: The Development of 6 Lean Desktop Environments

        Back in early 2008, we published a feature recommending the best 6 lean desktop environments. These desktops are: Xfce, ROX Desktop, LXDE, FVWM-Crystal, EDE, and Étoilé.

        How did these desktop environments fare over the past 12 years? Are they still going strong, are they outclassed by other software, or are they only remembered like fingerprints on an abandoned handrail?

        Let’s start with Xfce.

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • KDE/Plasma Status Update 2020-10-12 | There and back again

          On the OBS side, I have updated the KDE Apps to 20.08.2, and the KDE Frameworks to 5.75. Especially the update of apps brings in at least a critical security fix.

          Concerning the soon to be released Plasma 5.20, packages are more or less ready, but as reported here we have to wait for Qt 5.15 to be uploaded to unstable, which is also planned in the near future.

        • Linux desktop shell IPC: Wayland vs. D-Bus, and the lack of agreement on when to use them

          On the Linux desktop today, we have two dominant IPC technologies in use between applications and the desktop environment: Wayland and D-Bus. While created for different reasons, both are generically extensible and can be used to exchange data, synchronize state and send requests and signals between peers. A large number of desktop use cases are implemented using either technology, and some use cases are already distributed across both of them. The status quo is mostly the result of organic growth, with individual implementation choices down to tech friction or the lack thereof.

          For some use cases the choice of which to use is not obvious. This is one of the factors still slowing down the standardization and therefore adoption of Wayland-based sessions currently.


          Wayland (cool book link this time!) is the designated successor to the venerable X windowing system. Born from the same community, it's certainly informed by some of X's successes, but also many of the pain points experienced by implementers of X over the years. A lot of the advances in Wayland relate to the particular problems of windowing and presentation, but its heritage also did much to set the scene for revisiting what really belongs into the core windowing system and what doesn't. D-Bus and even its own direct predecessors did not exist for much of X's long and storied history. Conversely, in the Wayland world it has become a lot harder (in terms of scrutiny applied by the community) to get a desktop feature into a widely-adopted spec than it was in X, which for a long time was the only widely adopted transport medium in place.

          D-Bus is a far more generic IPC/RPC technology supporting a wider variety of connection patterns between parties. Service activation through the bus, multicast signals open to any participant, pervasive introspection of interfaces - you won't find much of this in Wayland, and D-Bus is the latest in a chain of technologies driven by genuine needs for such capabilities.

          There's a third element to the discussion, and it's the rise of the standards ecosystem, broadly promoting interoperability between desktop environments and the portability of apps between them. Put on a timeline, and D-Bus happened a decent number of years prior to the arrival of Wayland - D-Bus, therefore, has a headstart in being the medium of choice for specs and fd.o standards being referenced in protocol and service designs.

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

    • Distributions

      • Newest RoboLinux 11 Update Goes Far Beyond Typical Linux

        Whatever brings you to Robolinux, this distro goes far beyond what other new-user-friendly distros offer about resembling the look and feel of Microsoft Windows. RoboLinux delivers a solid performance and is stuffed with some of the best applications that Linux has to offer.

        Robolinux also has dozens of popular applications such as VLC, Audacious, Firefox, Thunderbird, Deluge Torrent client, Brasero CD/DVD burner, and Simple Screen Recorder.

        This distro is packed with many custom one-click installers like Tor Browser, 12P, Steam Wireshark, Opera, and Brave browser. Add the additional RoboLinux toolset to the array of controls already available in the three desktop environments and you get an unbeatable computing experience.

        RoboLinux comes with everything you need -- and then some -- to make daily computing tasks convenient. Many of the software packages typically are not found bundled in other Linux distros.

        This makes an awesome combination. RoboLinux could be an ideal vehicle for both enterprises and SMBs to make the migration to Linux.

      • Reviews

        • Review: Nitrux 2020.09.05

          Nitrux is an Ubuntu-based Linux distribution suitable for laptops and desktop computers. Its main desktop environment is NX Desktop, a KDE Plasma desktop enhanced with "plasmoids" to create a special blend of aesthetics and functionality.

          The distribution's website mentions a handful of key features including NX Firewall, a tool for simplifying firewall management. There is also a backup utility for automating and scheduling backups called Kup which is built into the distribution's settings panel. The Nitrux website also promotes using AppImage portable applications and suggests using AppImageHub, a central repository of portable packages, similar to how Flathub provides a repository of distribution-neutral Flatpaks.

          I downloaded the ISO for Nitrux which is about 3GB in size. The distribution is available for 64-bit (x86_64) machines exclusively. Booting from the provided media brought up a menu offering to start the distribution in either live desktop or failsafe modes. Taking the live desktop entry loads the Plasma desktop - or a login screen, it varied during my trial. When the system brought up a login prompt I could sign in using "nitrux" as both the account username and password.

          Once the Plasma desktop loads we find a panel placed across the top of the screen. The application menu is located to the left of this panel and the system tray to the right. There is a dock with some application launchers at the bottom of the desktop. One icon that launches the project's system installer is placed in the upper-left corner of the desktop. The Plasma environment uses a fairly dark, minimal theme. Once I had explored the live environment a little I turned my attention to the installer.

      • Screenshots/Screencasts

        • KDE Plasma 5.20 Beta Run Through - YouTube

          In this video, we are looking at KDE Plasma 5.20 Beta. Enjoy!

        • KDE Plasma 5.20 Beta

          Today we are looking at KDE Plasma 5.20 Beta. As usual, we just do a run-through of the Beta release of the new KDE Plasma desktop environment and when the stable release is out we look at some of the new features that stand out for us, so keep your eyes out for it! However, in this run through you can have a look at some of the new features added and check out the release notes, link below for more info about the changes, and more!

      • Arch Family

        • Chris Down, Facebook: Linux memory management at scale

          Facebook-employed Linux kernel engineer Chris Down held a 40 minute talk about memory management at the Arch Conf 2020 today. It was filled with useful insights, tips and strategies for Linux memory management using modern kernel frame-works like cgroups and tools like the oomd userspace Out-Of-Memory killer. The memory management strategies that vastly improved Facebook's servers may benefit your servers or perhaps just your desktop or laptop.


          Chris Down gave several interesting insights into Facebook's servers and how they mange them that are practically useful for anyone who has one or more servers, or just a regular desktop computer running Linux.

        • Distri – Comparing Apples and Oranges?

          Last weekend we had what I consider to be the very successful Arch Conf 2020. This included a talk by Michael Stapelberg about distri, his Linux distribution to research fast package management.

          Michael showed an example of installing QEMU in Arch vs distri, very similar to the results given on his post about Linux package managers being slow. There are a couple of examples of installing packages in that blog post – one pacman comes out looking quite good, one it comes out looking OK (at least it beats apt on Debian and dnf on Fedora…).

          Before I get into the teardown of these comparisons, I will point out that I am not disagreeing that distri is a very fast package manager. It is designed for pure speed, so it should definitely be the fastest! Also, I am not disagreeing that pacman could be faster in many areas. What I am concerned about is the conclusion that “The difference between the slowest and fastest package managers is 30x!“. This conclusion assumes that the package manager is the difference and not how the distribution chooses to implement the use of the package manager.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • Fedora 33 Review: What’s New and How to Upgrade

          Fedora 33 Beta, a Red Hat-sponsored community project, is released. It is a pre-release of the Fedora 33 Stable version, which will be available to the masses in the last week of October. Fedora 33 release has triggered excitement among Linux users with its significant shift from the ext4 filesystem to btrfs and other unique new features.

          In this post, we will look at some of these new features you can expect and give you a step by step guide on how to upgrade from Fedora 32 to Fedora 33.

      • Debian Family

        • How to try out Debian 11 early

          Unfortunately, Debian 11 is not yet available for download on the official Debian website. The reason for this is that Debian 10 is currently stable, and 11 is not yet marked stable. So, to try out Debian 11, you must first install Debian 10.

          There are a few ways to get Debian 10 working, but the best way to go is with the Debian 10 net installer, as it’s only a few megabytes in size and will allow you to download and install the latest Debian 10 packages.

          To get Debian 10 set up, you must first create a live USB installer. To start, download the latest Etcher, install it, and launch it. Then, download the Debian 10 net installer ISO to your computer.

          Once the Etcher app is installed and the net installer ISO is downloaded to your computer, launch Etcher, and use the app to flash the Debian 10 net installer ISO to USB.

          After flashing the Debian 10 net installer ISO to USB, reboot your computer and load into the BIOS. Inside of the BIOS, configure it to boot from USB. Doing so will load up the Debian 10 installer.

        • MellowPlayer

          There is a new application available for Sparkers: MellowPlayer

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • 7 Nice Open Source CAD Programs & AutoCAD Alternatives

        Looking for an open source CAD program or AutoCAD alternative? You would be surprised that the market is so full of them in fact.

        The open source ecosystem is quite large and reaches many aspects of the modern daily life. From engineering to science and medical sectors… Open source is no longer just Linux and Firefox, it has became too much more than that today.

        So instead of paying huge $$$ for proprietary CAD software such as AutoCAD and others, you may would like to give these open source solutions a shot.

      • 7 Best Free and Open Source Linux Terminal Multiplexers

        The nuts and bolts of Linux seem destined to be increasingly hidden away from the desktop user. The continuing development of popular desktop environments offering attractive interfaces and fancy features shows no sign of abatement. However intuitive and slick desktop environments become, there is little prospect that the faithful terminal will be consigned to the recycle bin in the near future. There is simply too much power at the hands of a terminal for many experienced Linux users.

        Users that want to exploit the full power of the terminal may benefit from using a terminal multiplexer. This type of application can be considered to be a text version of a graphical window manager. It enables users to run multiple text programs simultaneously, as well as offering features that allow users to switch seamlessly between these programs in operation. Terminal multiplexers also allow multiple computers to make simultaneous connections.

      • Web Browsers

        • Mozilla

          • Perhaps Mozilla Should Unfck Itself Before “Unfcking The Internet”

            The recent layoffs in August of more than 250 Mozilla employees, a quarter of its workforce, left the company shaking and the community worried about the future of the Firefox maker.

            The entire Servo team (A new browser engine in development since 2012), many developers working on MDN (Mozilla’s web development documentation portal) beside people working on various aspects of the company were laid off.

            Yet, instead of being transparent on why these layoffs happened and based on what criteria, and what will be the new company’s strategy to increase its current 4% browser marketshare instead of losing it, we get a new initiative from Mozilla called “Unfck The Internet” (Yes, that’s the official name they chose), which as they say, aims to “stop companies like Facebook and YouTube from contributing to the disastrous spread of misinformation and political manipulation”.

            But this isn’t just a one-time off initiative from Mozilla. Over the past few years Mozilla has been throwing tons of money and resources on similar social issues and projects of the Internet rather than developing their own main product, which is why they were here in the first place: Firefox.

            As a background story one should know that there are two entities here: Mozilla Foundation and Mozilla Corporation. The corporation is the one developing Firefox (And hence collects money from search agreements, other services… etc) while the Foundation is the only one receiving donations, hence there’s no direct way of donating to Firefox development. But the Corporation also funds the Foundation. The donations you do to Mozilla Foundation are never used to develop Firefox, but rather, to projects that promote the Mozilla Manifesto.

            This situation leaves the scene complex in terms of who to blame; Firefox browser (Controlled by the Corp) is the one generating the profit, but the profit goes to fund the Foundation as well. Yet, people get laid off because there’s no money, despite the “fellowships & awards” category at Mozilla’s blog showing an at least +$10 million spending (With help of other funds) on these social activities and other web projects just in the last two months.

      • Productivity Software/LibreOffice/Calligra

        • First Look: LibreOffice Has a New Look in Ubuntu 20.10

          Ubuntu devs pushed out the recent LibreOffice 7.0.2 update to Ubuntu 20.10 Groovy Gorilla users this weekend. And arriving alongside the many bug fixes and performances tweaks inside is a new icon theme bundled up especially for Ubuntu users.

          Yes, LibreOffice in Ubuntu 20.10 uses a new Yaru icon set by default.

          The Yaru icon set for LibreOffice is a full colour theme that covers all of the office app’s tools, options, buttons, and settings in all toolbars, dialogs, and menus. Yaru replaces the elementary-based icon pack (still included in LibreOffice if you want it back).

          But what kind of different does it make?

        • Great merged cells filling improvements in LibreOffice 7.1

          Select three cells, merge it (as shown on left image) and then try drag-fill columns down. A result was strange and very unexpected. Now in 7.1 it works as users wanted last 8 year, look at right image. It works for filling in to any direction!

      • FSF

        • GNU Projects

          • Links: October 11, 2020

            Ben Hillburn, president of the GNU Radio Project, recently tweeted about an online curriculum for learning SDR and DSP using Python. The course was developed by Dr. Mark Lichtman, who was a lead on GNU Radio, and from the look of it, this is the place to go to learn about putting SDRs to use doing cool things. The course is chock full of animations that make the concepts clear, and explain what all the equations mean in a way that’s sure to appeal to practical learners.

      • Programming/Development

        • Book club: JSON Web Tokens – Technicalities

          This month for our book club Daniel, Lars, Vince and I read Hardcoded secrets, unverified tokens, and other common JWT mistakes which wasn’t quite what we’d thought when it was picked. We had been expecting an analysis of JSON web tokens themselves as several us had been working in the area and had noticed various talk about problems with the standard but instead the article is more a discussion of the use of semgrep to find and fix common issues, using issues with JWT as examples.

          We therefore started off with a bit of a discussion of JWT, concluding that the underlying specification was basically fine given the problem to be solved but that as with any security related technology there were plenty of potential pitfalls in implementation and that sadly many of the libraries implementing the specification make it far too easy to make mistakes such as those covered by the article through their interface design and defaults. For example interfaces that allow interchangable use of public keys and shared keys are error prone, as is is making it easy to access unauthenticated data from tokens without clearly flagging that it is unauthenticated. We agreed that the wide range of JWT implementations available and successfully interoperating with each other is a sign that JWT is getting something right in providing a specification that is clear and implementable.

        • Laravel Scheduler Tutorial – Linux Hint

          Some tasks are required to perform on regular basis in any application, and it would be more efficient if the tasks could be done automatically. The Laravel framework makes these types of tasks easier by using Laravel Scheduler. Sending offer-related bulk emails, optimizing data, generating reports, keeping application backup, and removing inactive users are some common examples of the repetitive tasks that can be performed with the Laravel Scheduler. Laravel can execute specific tasks periodically by using a built-in task manager named Corn job. The configuration file named Corntab is used by Corn to manage scheduling tasks. This tutorial shows you how to manage repetitive tasks by creating Corn jobs and performing task scheduling.

        • Perl/Raku

          • Perl: The Weekly Challenge #081

            It was the most difficult week for me.


            Well, it is confirmed by my GP that I am going through Depression & Anxiety.

            So now you know why I didn’t do live video session in the recent weeks.

            I was even thinking on dropping the idea of participating in the weekly challenge for couple of weeks.

            But then I decided to do it in the end. Having said that it is still incomplete with no unit test for the Frequency Sort task.

            Please excuse me if you find bug/issue in my solutions.

          • MNIST Handwriting Recognition Deep Learning Written in Pure Perl

            The MNIST handwriting recognition deep learning written with Pure Perl is released.

            Because it is pure Perl code, it can be used by Perl users to get an overview of deep learning algorithms.

          • Perl Weekly Challenge 81: Frequency Sort

            These are some answers to the Week 81 of the Perl Weekly Challenge organized by Mohammad S. Anwar

        • Python

          • How To Install and Code Python on Android With Pydroid 3

            Learn how to install the Pydroid 3 IDE on Android, along with useful tools and libraries to practice Python coding.

            Portable coding in Python is possible, thanks to the Pydroid 3 integrated development environment (IDE). Pydroid is a minimalist Python 3 interpreter that lets you execute minor projects and do minimal coding on your Android device.


            The Pydroid 3 IDE is available on the Play Store. However, to make the app more useful and easy to work with, you need to download the Pydroid repository plugin from the Play Store. While installing this plugin might not be compulsory, it makes automatic pip installation of packages much easier.

            By default, Pydroid 3 doesn't have permission to access your device storage. This makes the creation of project folders difficult or impossible without some technical manipulation. To solve that problem, download the Pydroid permissions plugin from the Play Store, which allows Pydroid to create folders and files on your device.

          • How to run Python on Ubuntu 20.04

            Most Linux distros have Python already installed by default. To check this, open up your terminal and type in python3.6. You will notice that the cursor will change.

          • Scrapy vs BeautifulSoup | Python Web Crawlers - CodersLegacy

            If you ever come across a scenario where you need to download data off the internet, you'll need to use a Python Web Crawler. There are two good web crawlers in Python that can be used for this purpose, Scrapy and BeautifulSoup.

            What are web crawlers? What is web scraping? Which python web crawler should you be using, Scrapy or BeautifulSoup? We’ll be answering all these questions here in this article.

          • GridRoyale - A life simulation for exploring... - Ram’s blog

            This is a project that I wanted to do for years. I finally had the opportunity to do it. Check out the GridRoyale readme on GitHub for more details and a live demo.

            GridRoyale is a life simulation. It’s a tool for machine learning researchers to explore social dynamics.

            It’s similar to Game of Life or GridWorld, except I added game mechanics to encourage the players to behave socially. These game mechanics are similar to those in the battle royale genre of computer games, which is why it’s called GridRoyale.

          • ABlog v0.10 released — ABlog

            ABlog v0.10 is released with the main focus being to support the latest version of Sphinx as well as Python 3 only support.

            Ablog V0.9.X will no longer be supported as Python 2 comes to an end in a few months and it is time people upgraded.

          • Write a python function that produces an array with the numbers 0 to N-1 in it €» Kibiwebgeek

            In this article, we will create a python function that will produce an array with the numbers 0 to N-1 in it.

          • Andrea Grandi – Python 3.9 introduces removeprefix and removesuffix

            A quick tutorial to removeprefix and removesuffix methods which have been introduced with Python 3.9.0

          • Data Engineering Series #1: 10 Key tech skills you need, to become a competent Data Engineer. | Codementor

            Bridging the gap between Application Developers and Data Scientists, the demand for Data Engineers rose up to 50% in 2020, especially due to increase in investments on AI based SaaS products.

          • Merge two dictionaries using the Dict Union operator €» Kibiwebgeek

            In this article we will create a Python function which will merge two dictionaries using the Dict Union operator.

            The Dict Union operator will only merge the key and value pair with a unique key’s name, which means if there are two keys with the same name in the same dictionary, only the last key in the dictionary will be merged. If the same key appears in both dictionaries, then the key in the second dictionary will be merged into this Dict union.

            After the merger of two dictionaries, the function will change the value of the key if the third optional argument has tuples in it which contain the key and value to be changed.

          • Learn Python for Data Science

            This tutorial would help you to learn Data Science with Python by examples. It is designed for beginners who want to get started with Data Science in Python. Python is an open source language and it is widely used as a high-level programming language for general-purpose programming. It has gained high popularity in data science world. In the PyPL Popularity of Programming language index, Python scored second rank with a 14 percent share. In advanced analytics and predictive analytics market, it is ranked among top 3 programming languages for advanced analytics.

        • Rust and Java

          • My top 7 keywords in Rust |

            I've been using Rust for a few months now, writing rather more of it than I expected—though quite a lot of that has been thrown away as I've learned, improved what I'm writing, and taken some more complex tasks beyond what I originally intended.

            I still love it and thought it might be good to talk about some of the important keywords that come up again and again in Rust. I'll provide my personal summary of what they do, why you need to think about how you use them, and anything else that's useful, particularly for people who are new to Rust or coming from another language (such as Java; see my article Why I'm enjoying learning Rust as a Java programmer).

          • Quarked testing: Writing tests for Quarkus - Red Hat Developer

            DevNation Tech Talks are hosted by the Red Hat technologists who create our products. These sessions include real solutions plus code and sample projects to help you get started. In this talk, you’ll learn about testing Quarkus applications and services from Alex Soto Bueno and Burr Sutter.

            Testing allows you to deliver your application with the confidence that you’re building the right things and building the things right. Testing also helps developers refactor their code, add a new feature, or fix a bug knowing that nothing else is breaking.

            Quarkus brings to the Java ecosystem a way to develop cloud-first, container-native, serverless-focused, and Kubernetes-optimized applications. This is where GraalVM meets Quarkus, bringing server-side and enterprise-capable Java to help you build truly cloud-native apps.

            But, how do you test Quarkus applications and services? In this talk, we show how you how. We’ll look at how to test basic components, mocks, stubs, or (secured) RESTful web APIs. Also, we will cover more advanced topics such as persistence tests, service virtualization, and using containers for testing purposes. Come to this session to learn in practice how to write tests for Quarkus.

  • Leftovers

    • Review: Hand to Mouth by Linda Tirado
    • Leading the relationship with your manager

      As you work, continue learning about the functions your manager's group performs. Then consider how you can continue to help that work move in a direction the manager will find beneficial. As your manager sees you can be trusted to do what's expected and are working in the entire group's interest, you'll earn more and more responsibility. When your goals align more closely with your manager's goals—and you've become a trusted team member—you'll have achieved a partnership.

      Remember: a manager is responsible for the functioning of the team as a whole, while you can be responsible for the specific implementation of that functionality. A manager can have multiple employee/partners on the team, each with their own areas of responsibility. Reaching this level can lead to increased job satisfaction (not to mention the sense that your team is working as a well-oiled machine).

    • Science

      • The Nobel prize delay is growing

        But data compiled by researchers at the University of Florence, Aalto University in Finland and the University of Belgrade suggest that this “prize delay” now routinely spans decades. In physics, over the past century the average gap between achievement and award has increased from ten years to more than 30. Fifteen of the longest 20 have come in the past two decades. These include British scientist Peter Higgs (2013) who won 49 years after predicting the existence of the boson that bears his name, and Nambu Yoichiro (2008), a Japanese scientist, who became a laureate 48 years after his work on spontaneous symmetry-breaking. In chemistry, the average delay has roughly doubled in the past 100 years. In medicine, the same trend is evident. This year’s prize went to three scientists involved in identifying the hepatitis C virus in 1989.

    • Health/Nutrition

      • Why You Don't Need to Feel Sad About Donald Trump Catching COVID

        We should feel sad for him that he is so utterly monstrous: that his soul is in turmoil.

      • Donald Trump, Superspreader-in-Chief, Endangers White House Staff

        His indifference to those workers, and the country at large, is criminal.

      • Twitter Tags Trump Post About COVID-19 as Platform Cracks Down on Misinformation

        Twitter will also prompt users to the “quote tweet” function before they retweet a post that has been flagged as potentially misleading, encouraging them to add their own commentary before amplifying harmful information. Political figures will be especially monitored during this time, as well as accounts with more than 100,000 followers. Topics that these rules pertain to include the election, COVID-19 and civic integrity.

      • Twitter Again Tags Trump Tweet for Spreading "Potentially Harmful" Virus Information

        The social media platform said Friday it was going to crack down even harder on those who spread false information, especially candidates, leading up to the Nov. 3 election. Trump has had several posts tagged in the past for misleading and false information both on the election and the coronavirus pandemic.

      • Twitter labels Trump tweet on coronavirus immunity as 'misleading'

        The post was hidden several hours later by Twitter content administrators with a tag that reads, "[t]his Tweet violated the Twitter Rules about spreading misleading and potentially harmful information related to COVID-19. However, Twitter has determined that it may be in the public’s interest for the Tweet to remain accessible." The tag also directed users to the platform's blog explaining how content relating to the coronavirus is displayed on Twitter's platform.

        White House officials did not immediately return a request for comment.

      • Twitter flags, limits sharing on Trump tweet about being ‘immune’ to coronavirus

        Last week’s updates further tightened the rules around spreading misinformation, and encouraged people to quote-tweet and “add their own commentary” to tweets before retweeting someone. The update also included plans to flag or remove tweets meant to incite interference in the election or election results, and tweets from political figures with more than 100,000 followers — which includes President Trump — labeled as “misleading” are now more difficult to access.

      • Donald Trump's health: A new front in the right's long war against reality

        This bizarre episode capped off a truly strange weekend in which the condition of the president of the United States of America, the most powerful man in the world, was puzzled over as one conflicting account after another battled for precedence. It was reminiscent of the propaganda-laden crises of authoritarian states and failed nations, times in which leaders were either perfectly healthy or functionally dead and crises either under control or raging unabated.

        The disturbing truth is that this seemingly inexplicable moment is the result of a decades-long war over the very nature of reality within America. I had struggled to understand this before writing "American Rule: How a Nation Conquered the World but Failed Its People" and finding that modern American history has been dominated by this conflict and the Republican Party's insistence on constructing an alternate reality to aid in its consolidation of power.

      • The End of Trump’s Fifth Avenue

        Trump’s 5th Avenue principle is being tested as never before. So far, more than 214,000 Americans have died from Covid-19, one of the world’s highest death rates – due in part to Trump initially downplaying its dangers, then refusing responsibility for it, promoting quack remedies for it, muzzling government experts on it, pushing states to reopen despite it, and discouraging people from wearing masks.

      • FOSS Patents: Experts call plexiglass shields used by Munich I Regional Court "absurd" and useless to protect against COVID-19, even if they were several times larger

        Superspreader patent judges must be stopped from going ahead with trials the world doesn't need--unless, of course, you reduce the world to patent trolls (including failed businesses that resort to patent monetization because their products sucked) and the litigation industry. One such hotspot is Texas (meaning both the Eastern District and its new rival, the Western District's Wac[k]o division). Another is Germany, where most patent infringement complaints are filed in Dusseldorf, Mannheim, and Munich.

        In Munich, there is an unfathomable discrepancy between the situation out in the streets--where people have to wear masks in large parts of the city center--and courtrooms at the Palace of Justice, some of which are crowded for the purpose of conducting the Munich I Regional Court's (Landgericht München I) patent trials.

        At last month's Conversant v. Daimler trial, the presiding judge said right at the start that the sole reason people were required to wear masks was that he had knowledge of at least one person (I might have an idea whom he meant...) being present who insisted on that. What he did not take into consideration is that there are indeed party representatives and lawyers who attend those trials and very much want to protect their health. I know it from secret conversations. It's just that they don't dare to enforce their constitutional right because they fear judicial backlash.

    • Integrity/Availability

    • Defence/Aggression

      • Several GOP State Legislators Up for Reelection Have Nice Words for the KKK
      • Will Trump's Call for Poll-Watchers Bring Paramilitaries to the Voting Booth?

        Following President Donald Trump’s refusal last month to denounce white supremacists along with his longstanding pattern of undermining democratic norms — and in the wake of the FBI’s interception of a plot by right-wing domestic terrorists to kidnap Michigan’s Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and overthrow the state government — fears are mounting about the danger posed by far-right paramilitary groups heeding Trump’s call to “go into the polls and watch very carefully.”

      • Declining American Hegemony Could Be A Good Thing

        'The declining global hegemony of the United States will be an opportunity to build better lives everywhere'

      • The Long Wars Against El Paso and Ciudad Juarez

        This routine went on for years without major incident until, suddenly, an invader came to town on August 3, 2019.

        The intruder wasn’t one of the migrants from the south trying to cross the border here that Fox News, the President and his cronies rail about, but a young white racist who drove hours and hours from a Dallas suburb armed with an assault rifle and a mission to kill Mexicans.

        Support our evolving Subscriber Area and enjoy access to all Subscribers content. € Subscribe

      • The Taliban on Trump: "We hope he will win the election" and withdraw U.S. troops - CBS News
      • Mallory McMorrow The Gov. Whitmer kidnapping plot was inspired by common political rhetoric. It needs to end.

        When extremists hear repeated messages sanctioned by authorities about defeating a “tyrant,” they can hear that as a call to action, not just politics.

      • Assange Faces Extradition for Exposing US War Crimes

        Three weeks of testimony in Julian Assange’s extradition hearing in London underscored WikiLeaks’s extraordinary revelation of U.S. war crimes in Iraq, Afghanistan and Guantánamo Bay. But the Trump administration is seeking to extradite Assange to the United States to stand trial for charges under the Espionage Act that could cause him to spend 175 years in prison.

      • The Sedition of Donald Trump

        That’s for starters. Trump’s racist rhetoric and shout-outs to white nationalists have cleaved the nation in two, driving political polarization with an intensity not seen since the Civil War. His explicit encouragement of violence and armed demonstrations has menaced the rule of law. His brazen attempt to shake down the president of Ukraine (“Do us a favor, though”), in order to manufacture dirt against his chief political opponent — the event that triggered Trump’s impeachment — almost surely would have led to his removal from office but for the cynicism, cowardice, and partisanship of the Senate Republican majority. His amply documented obstruction of justice in connection with the Russia investigation — 10 offenses, according to the Mueller report; the corruption of his office to enrich himself and his family in violation of the Constitution’s emoluments clause; his purposeful sabotage of the First Amendment by demonizing the free press as enemies of the people — all this and more add up to not just the worst performance of any American president, but the most subversive conduct since Jefferson Davis, who was not a president of the United States.

      • Christian Victims in Nigeria Fear Future Attacks

        Abductions and killings by the cattle herders are frequent and random in Nigeria, and Christian ethnic groups are the main victims. The herders are Muslims who make regular journeys with their cattle to pastures down south—an area mostly dominated by Christians.

    • Environment

      • Climate heat melts Arctic snows and dries forests

        Fires now blaze under Arctic snows, where once even the wettest rainforests burned. Climate change delivers unlikely outcomes.

      • The candidates don't get it: from pandemics to climate change, the real problem is capitalism itself

        Most of the major problems with America, and the world, can be traced back to the singular cause of capitalism, an economic system in which a society's means of production are primarily controlled by private individuals hoping to make a profit. It is a system that has devastated our planet to the point where it may sound be largely uninhabitable, created massive income inequality and left us woefully unprepared for crises like the novel coronavirus pandemic.

      • Energy

        • Investing in new energy infrastructure: Green light for EU grants worth nearly €1 billion

          EU Member States agreed yesterday on a Commission proposal to invest €998 million in key European energy infrastructure projects under the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF). Yesterday’s positive vote provides financial aid for works and studies for ten projects.

          The largest amount of funding goes to the Baltic Synchronisation Project (€720 million), to better integrate the electricity markets of Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland. Other projects include a smart electricity grid linking Hungary and Slovakia (€102 million), and the first-ever CEF grant for works on a CO2 transport project for Belgian and Dutch ports.

        • New Project to Support the Improvement of Air Quality in Greater Cairo

          The World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors today approved a US$200 million project to support Egypt’s initiatives to reduce air and climate pollution from critical sectors and to increase resilience to air pollution in Greater Cairo. The project will focus on reducing vehicle emissions, improving the management of solid waste, and strengthening the air and climate decision-making system.

          Greater Cairo’s air quality has recently seen an improvement; however, ambient air pollution remains the city’s most significant environmental health issue—one that weighs heavily on residents’ quality of life and on the economy. Recent studies have estimated the annual economic cost of air pollution on health in the Greater Cairo area alone at about 1.4% of Egypt’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

    • Finance

      • Trump's Tax Returns Reflect Undue Privileges Given to Real Estate in Tax Code

        Janine Jackson: “Donald Trump’s Tax Returns Have Many Wondering What They’re Doing Wrong,” ran one cheeky headline, based on long-awaited reporting from The New York Times. The implication is that tax avoidance, if you can get away with it, is clever, and presumably you can still use the other side of your mouth to complain about public resources being underfunded.

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

    • Freedom of Information/Freedom of the Press

      • PBC includes more lawyers in body set up to defend journalists

        Through a notification the PBC further said that 12 lawyers in addition to seven lawyers had already been nominated for the committee on Sept 29.

        Talking to Dawn, PBC vice chairman Abid Saqi explained that names had been added in the committee to give a gender balance since eight female lawyers had also been included in the list.

      • Activists: Cambodia’s Draft Cybercrime Law Imperils Free Expression, Privacy

        A recent draft of the cybercrime law obtained by VOA Khmer has drawn concerns from NGOs and rights groups over clauses that could help the government intensify its crackdown on freedom of expression, while also raising privacy and data collection concerns.

        The draft law, the formulation of which was first announced in 2010, was intended to regulate Cambodia’s cyberspace, giving judicial police and courts access to investigate criminal infractions. However, an August draft of the law reveals that it could be used to further curtail freedom of expression while relying on vaguely defined scenarios to justify its implementation.

        VOA Khmer provided Interior Ministry Secretary of State Bun Honn a copy of the leaked draft. The official refused to confirm the authenticity of the text, although he did not reject its contents. Bun Honn is in charge of drafting the long-delayed legislation.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • Lord Advocate Launches War on Twitter

        In what we think is a world first, the Lord Advocate of Scotland is claiming in the contempt of court case against me that I am legally responsible for the content of replies to my tweets.

      • COVID Fuels Surge in Sexual Violence, Child Marriage

        But, encouraged by her mother, she began blogging about the lack of support services in Nigeria. Other survivors echoed her concerns, inspiring Osowobi to launch Stand to End Rape (STER). Since 2014, the Lagos-based nonprofit has worked to provide legal, medical and mental health support to survivors, encourage prosecution of their assailants, and change negative cultural attitudes that diminish women and girls.

        The goal, says Osowobi, now 30, is to "actually reduce this spate of sexual violence."

      • Hawkins for President Supports Renaming Columbus Day Indigenous Peoples Day

        Howie Hawkins, the Green Party candidate for President, said that he would redress past and ongoing injustices against Native Americans by honoring treaties, renaming the federal Columbus Day holiday as Indigenous People’s Day, and ending the systemic discrimination against indigenous people.

        “European colonizers committed genocide against the native population who were already here when they arrived. Columbus was a mass murderer. Our government and business leaders continue to exploit the Indigenous People for profits while denying them basic human rights and their cultural heritage,” noted Hawkins.

        Hawkins said he was pleased that his hometown of Syracuse recently announced that would finally remove the Columbus statue downtown.

        European settlers killed an estimated 56 million indigenous people over 100 years in South, Central and North America, causing large swaths of farmland to be abandoned and reforested. Columbus was documented to have partaken in mass hangings, torture, murder, rapes, roasting people on spits, burnings at the stake, and hacking young children to death. In a 20-year period, the Taino population under Columbus was reduced from as many as 8 million to 100,000.

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

    • Monopolies

      • It’s Time To Nationalize Social Media And Big Tech

        The “outlet” — PeaceData — reached out to me through one of their “associate editors” (@Alex_Lacusta) via DM on July 8, writing, “we’re a young, progressive global news outlet that is seeking young and aspiring writers.” I was told that the “editors” liked my writing and views, and was initially offered $200 to $250 per piece.

        I went back and forth with Alex, while in the meantime I checked out the editors’ social media pages on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, the pieces that were published (which generally aligned with my values), and contributors — which included some Twitter “blue checks” and leftist journalists, adding to the operation’s legitimacy. After exercising due diligence and expressing interest in the opportunity, Alex dropped the rate to $100 to $150 per piece, with the hook that I could write a regular column. Alex informed me I could choose the topics so long as they focused on “anti-war, anti-corruption, and environmentalism.” I accepted and was excited to have a home and compensation for my work.

        Support our evolving Subscriber Area and enjoy access to all Subscribers content. € Subscribe

      • House Antitrust Report on Big Tech: Less Would Have Been More

        Alphabet, Amazon, Facebook and Apple are among the top 10 contributors to Joe Biden’s candidate campaign committee in the 2020 cycle, according to OpenSecrets.

        Companies are prohibited by law from donating to candidates themselves. The contributions were made by company employees, companies’ political action committees (PACs) or members of the PAC.

      • Epic judge permanently restrains Apple from blocking Unreal Engine, but won’t force Fortnite

        Fortnite won’t be coming back to the App Store any time soon. On Friday, Judge Yvonne Gonzales Rogers refused to grant Epic Games a preliminary injunction against Apple that would force the game developer to reinstate Fortnite on the App Store, while simultaneously granting an injunction that keeps Apple from retaliating against the Unreal Engine, which Epic also owns (PDF). In other words, we now have a permanent version of the temporary restraining order ruling from last month.

        That means the state of affairs, in which Epic is banned from publishing new games on iOS and cannot distribute Fortnite on the App Store in its current form, will remain in place for the length of the trial — unless Epic decides to remove its own in-app payment mechanism that initiated the bitter legal feud in August. Rogers had previously suggested a jury trial might be appropriate as soon as next July, but ahead of today’s ruling, both parties said they would rather have the case decided by a judge.

      • Panel: ‘Don’t get branded as just an IP person’

        Nicole Spence, IP attorney at IBM, added that everyone has emotional concerns, and that during COVID-19, home and work life have become more likely to blend into one another. Leaders should check in regularly with their teams and ask their employees how they are doing, said Spence.


        Spence at IBM added that one way to foster more diversity in IP is to raise more awareness of IP departments.

      • FOSS Patents: Judge converts Epic Games v. Apple TRO into preliminary injunction, says Epic lost credibility with court, and disagrees with Microsoft on Xbox

        The outcome is the same as at the TRO stage in terms of Epic not being allowed to bypass Apple's in-app payment rules with Fortnite, Apple not being allowed to terminate the developer account for Unreal Engine that formally belongs to an Epic entity in Switzerland, and the court once again declines to hold that one party or the other is likely to prevail on the merits. My report on the PI hearing already stated in its headline that Epic was struggling to persuade the court of its likelihood to win.

        While the TRO was a pre-PI decision, the PI is preliminary to a hypothetical permanent injunction that may or may not come down after the bench trial to be held in Oakland in May 2021. Whoever loses will likely appeal, and then it's another question whether a permanent injunction coming down at that point will or will not continue to be enforced.

      • FOSS Patents: Congressional report on competition in digital markets will have political impact, but judiciary remains independent: Epic Games v. Apple and Epic Games v. Google

        Toward the end of my first post today (on the Epic Games v. Apple bench trial having been scheduled to start on May 3, 2021) I linked to and quoted from a Congressional report, Investigation of Competition in Digital Markets. At about the same time, a Twitter user taking great interest in the App Store antitrust matters asked me whether I thought this report might affect the upcoming trial. I thought others might have the same question, so in addition to my Twitter reply I felt I should do a blog post as well.

        As an antitrust commentator and app developer, I'm somewhere in the middle between the parties and understand both sides to some degree. At this point it's too early for me to take a firm position on the merits, though I will soon as the case is going to go to trial so very soon. The following thoughts are purely procedural or, where it applies, political in nature.

      • Patents

        • Panel: What we would do if 20% of our patent budget were cut

          Panellists from InterDigital and Corteva Agriscience discussed best practices for patent budgets at Managing IP’s US Patent Forum yesterday.

          Sonja London, director of patent licensing at Nokia in Finland, moderated the talk on “Portfolio optimisation: creative solutions for managing your IP strategy” and asked panellists what they would do if 20% of their budget were cut.

          Marian Flattery, associate general counsel of IP at agricultural chemical company Corteva Agriscience in Iowa, said foreign filings would be the first area she would look to cut. She noted that her company often files in 40 to 60 countries, but said this could be curtailed if budget restrictions required it.

        • DoJ antitrust chief reveals plans to leave in 2021

          In an exclusive interview, assistant attorney general Makan Delrahim says he will leave the Department of Justice at the end of Trump’s first term, whether the president wins the election or not


          Delrahim, who was appointed to his role as assistant attorney general in September 2017, was also interviewed by this publication in 2018.

          He spoke about his commitment to the New Madison approach, which sets out that antitrust law should not be used as a tool to police FRAND commitments that patent-holders unilaterally make to standard setting organisations, and other plans for his term at the DoJ.

        • This week in IP: AIPPI kicks off, SCOTUS rejects key petitions, Van Halen dies

          In one fell swoop this week, the US Supreme Court knocked down several key petitions for writ of certiorari in IP matters: TCL v Ericsson, Chamberlain v Techtronic and a case involving the song Stairway to Heaven.

          In the first petition, TCL had asked SCOTUS to overturn a ruling from the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit allowing juries, rather than judges, to decide royalty rates in standard essential patent cases. Managing IP published an analysis of seventh amendment issues earlier this week.

          In the Chamberlain v Techtronic petition, the Chamberlain Group had argued that the Federal Circuit had picked its patent claims apart to an unfair degree when deciding on their validity under Section 101.

          The appellate court had set out that the claims had to be viewed as a whole and not be broken down to “a single supposed point of novelty”.

          In the Stairway to Heaven petition, Michael Skidmore had asked SCOTUS to overturn a March 2020 decision from the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit that Led Zeppelin’s classic song, Stairway to Heaven, did not infringe Taurus, a track written by Randy Wolfe in 1967. IP counsel called this outcome back in August.

          However, the high court did not make a decision on the petition in Arthrex v Smith & Nephew,which concerns the constitutionality of administrative patent judges at the Patent Trial and Appeal Board. Managing IP reported at the start of the year that while some practitioners were deeply concerned by the eventual outcome of this case, others were unfazed by it.

          SCOTUS also heard oral arguments this week in Google v Oracle, the biggest copyright case of the decade in the US, on whether copyright protection extends to a software interface. Americas reporter Rani Mehta wrote last month about how the case should focus on application programming interfaces.

        • Drafting for Multiple Jurisdictions Miniseries Part 3: Mind Your Language!

          Many patent owners are interested in trying to draft a single patent application that will serve them in several countries. This is ambitious, since there are many differences between various countries’ patent systems, but perhaps not impossible. The patent drafter just needs to be aware of and try to balance all the different requirements in the single patent application. This series of articles endeavors to outline some important considerations when drafting a single patent application for several major countries and regions.

          In our first article (available here), we reviewed the grace period provisions in the U.S., Korea, China, and the European Patent Office (“EPO”). Our second article (available here) looked at data considerations on filing. In this third article, we look at the language used when drafting and balancing the requirements of the U.S., Korea, China, and the European Patent Office in this regard.

        • USPTO patent boss lays out big changes to exam times and routing

          The USPTO patents organisation has made a lot of changes this month, the most important of which patents commissioner Drew Hirshfeld laid out to listeners at Managing IP’s US Patent Forum yesterday.

          Hirshfeld, who was appointed for a second five-year term in his role last July, explained that on October 1, his organisation changed exam times, put in a new performance appraisal plan for employees, and revolutionised how the office dockets and routes cases to examiners.


          As of last week, said Hirshfeld, the USPTO officially transferred over to the CPC system from the US patent classification system, which allowed it to base exam times on the CPC.


          He noted that his organisation receives well over 450,000 new cases a year, not including continuations, which means that the way it routes those is a huge undertaking.

        • China’s first anti-suit injunction; Apple CEO rejects efficient infringement; CRISPR patent battle latest; EPO and USPTO heads’ covid warning; CBM back from the dead?; plus much more

          Speaking at IPBC Connect, the EPO and USPTO leaders say covid-induced changes are here to stay and warn of decreased user engagement caused by the pandemic

        • Thaler v Comptroller-General: Part 2 – What now for AI inventions following Thaler?

          Following the Thaler decision and pending any further possible appeal, the UK's position on AI inventors is at first sight very clear; under the Patents Act 1977 an AI system cannot be named as an inventor and the right to apply for an invention can only originate from a human inventor. However, the decision leaves two unanswered questions. The first is expressly recognised in the judgment. The second (related) question was not discussed in Thaler but is implicit in the provisions of the Patents Act regarding challenges to inventorship and entitlement. This Part 2 explores these questions and looks ahead to how the law may change in future.


          Approaching this question from the perspective of section 7(3) (the inventor is the actual deviser of the invention) and Yeda (the actual deviser is the natural person who came up with the inventive concept) would lead to a detailed investigation of the interactions between DABUS and Dr Thaler which gave rise to the inventions. Smith J and the UKIPO assumed in Dr Thaler's favour (for the purposes of their decisions) that he was correct in his assertion that DABUS was fully responsible for identifying and solving the problems disclosed in the applications and recognising the novelty and salience of the solutions. They did not investigate further the actual role which Dr Thaler may have played in devising the inventive concepts (e.g. the extent to which his involvement in developing DABUS may have contributed).

          Generalising from Dr Thaler's applications, it appears inconsistent with the approach to the definition of "inventor" endorsed by Smith J, to state that a person could be considered the inventor of any inventions devised by an AI system purely by virtue of owning that system. To take an extreme example, purchasing an off-the-shelf "invention machine" and pressing the "invent now" button, which results in the machine humming away for a while and then printing out a fully formed patent application which is promptly filed with the UKIPO, would not appear to qualify the owner of the machine as the person who came up with the inventive concept. At the other extreme, a person using an AI based text-to-speech program to dictate a patent application would clearly qualify as the inventor notwithstanding the use of an AI system in the process. There will of course be infinite shades of grey between these two extremes and, other than restating established principles, the Thaler decision does not provide any guidance on where to draw the line.

        • Important IP Updates Covid-19 | 01.10.2020

          European Patent Office (EPO) - Operational.

          European Union Intellectual Property Institute (EUIPO) - The Office is open and continues to receive and process trademark and design applications.

        • Patent Office Updates You Need to Know

          The European Patent Office (EPO) released information about the procedures and services available for filing and receiving priority documents and certified copies.

        • EU: What does Brexit mean for your intellectual property rights?

          The UK has confirmed that it will not seek membership of the Unitary Patent and Unified Patent Court post-Brexit.

        • Everdrone Awarded Patent To Enable Drone Operations In Complex Airspace [Ed: As if they could not do so WITHOUT a patent?!]
        • Everdrone patent allows its drone to avoid buildings and trees [Ed: This is nonsense. You do not need a patent for that. Patents do not actually "allow" this.]
        • FOSS Patents: In the increasingly insane world of patent litigation, antisuit injunctions are of no more value unless accompanied by anti-anti-antisuit injunctions--ex parte, of course

          This is a follow-up to the Tuesday post entitled The day that international comity died was when the UK Supreme Court handed down its injudicious Unwired Planet ruling. It's not just that international comity in patent litigation is history: so is sanity--and in this case it's not about sanity in a literal sense (Experts call plexiglass shields used by Munich I Regional Court "absurd" and useless to protect against COVID-19, even if they were several times larger), but--figuratively speaking--in the antisuit context. And once again, UK and German judges are to blame because they've brought about a situation in which other jurisdictions will have to take ever more extreme measures.

          Also on Tuesday, Professor Thomas Cotter mentioned on his much recommended Comparative Patent Remedies blog a Chinese court's antisuit injunction against InterDigital in connection with its standard-essential patent (SEP) litigation against Xiaomi in India, and the fact that InterDigital had asked the Delhi High Court for an anti-antisuit injunction. And he asked: "Ah, where will it all end?"

        • Software Patents

          • FOSS Patents: Penny-wise and dollar-foolish: Daimler and other automotive companies almost literally invite the world's patent trolls to sue them

            Knowing that the global automotive industry follows this blog closely, I might have to start a series of posts called "Avoiding Mistakes" or "Do's and especially DON'Ts." It's understandable that old companies need some time to adjust to the Digital Age, but neither the market nor patent abusers will give them that much time. Even politicians aren't prepared to anymore.

            Last week, when I was zapping between radio stations, I heard David Bowie's "Absolute Beginners" for the first time in I don't know how many years, and if I were to produce a movie about the automotive patent wars, I'd seek to license it for the main theme.

            I'm not going to repeat what I wrote yesterday about Daimler's insane decision to take a car-level standard-essential patent (SEP) license from Sharp instead of fighting on. May the link suffice.

          • In-house: AI patenting is becoming more challenging

            For starters, as speakers from Medtronic, Aptiv and Sterne Kessler pointed out, different organisations have different ideas of what AI actually is.

            “For us, as a healthcare company, regular software receives specific instructions that tell it how to behave, classify data and make decisions,” said Ishak Akyuz, senior principal legal counsel at Medtronic in New York City.

            “For AI, we start thinking of providing a framework for the computer to make decisions and draw conclusions without providing specific instructions. It becomes like a black box where we don’t actually know how the computer is coming up with decisions that classifies something as X or Y.”

            David Goodfellow, EMEA chief patent counsel at technology company Aptiv in Dublin, added that his business and other AI-focused companies were well positioned to manage software patents, which they could now expect to properly scope to make eligible and meaningful in most jurisdictions.

          • Patent Docs: USPTO Publishes Report on AI-Related Policies [Ed: Software patents booster Michael Borella (a patent litigation profiteer) getting all pumped about “HEY HI” misused as a pretext for illegal and computer-generated 'patents']

            Last year, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) issued a request for comments (RFC) on patenting artificial intelligence (AI) based inventions. Topics of the RFC included AI's impact on inventorship and ownership, patent eligibility, disclosure, prior art, and the level of ordinary skill in the art. The USPTO received 99 comments from a variety of stakeholders. In parallel to that effort, the USPTO also released a second RFC related to the impact of AI on copyright, trademark, database protections, and trade secret law. Stakeholders provided a similar number of comments.

      • Trademarks

        • Jürgen Klinsmann wins trade mark opposition and also strikes lethal blow by invalidating some of the opponent’s marks on the basis of non-use

          In an interesting decision concerning German football manager Jürgen Klinsmann, the EUIPO Fourth Board of Appeal reversed the Opposition Division’s earlier findings and considered that there is no likelihood of confusion between the marks depicted below. In addition, the Board also considered that some of the marks relied on by the Opponent were invalid since it could not prove genuine use of those marks.

        • UK: How Will Brexit Impact Your Trademarks And Other IP Rights?

          JMBM has been closely tracking Brexit and its impact on intellectual property rights and is prepared to assist clients in safeguarding their rights as the Brexit transition period comes to a close. Among other things, existing EU registrations will automatically be cloned into UK registrations. These new registrations will need to be identified, and relevant dates will need to be docketed. Applications pending with the EU Trademark Office at the close of the transition period, however, will not be cloned; instead there will be a nine month "grace period" during which pending EU applications can be re-filed in the UK. If filed during this period, the UK applications will enjoy the same priority date as the pending EU application. However, third parties will have an opportunity to oppose these applications, even if they did not oppose the original EU application.

        • EUIPO lawyer: trademark disclaimers pose language difficulties

          Panellists at the AIPPI Congress discussed how applicants can avoid inconsistent IP office decisions on trademarks that contain generic or descriptive terms

        • In-house: don’t be ashamed to admit you were conned

          Counsel at P&G, Unilever, Zino Davidoff and Brita say making sure all teams communicate with each other is key to spotting fraudulent trademark invoices

        • CJEU says that the assessment of distinctiveness of signs that are to be applied to specific goods used to deliver a service should not also entail an assessment of norms and/or customs of the relevant sector - The IPKat

          Should the distinctiveness (under what is now Article 4(1)(b) of Directive 2015/2436 (the EU Trade Mark Directive)) of a sign that is to be applied to specific goods be assessed having regard to what is customary in the relevant sector? This, in a nutshell, is the question that the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) was asked in a recent referral for a preliminary ruling from Sweden.

          The Court answered it in the negative in this week’s judgment in Aktiebolaget Östgötatrafiken v Patent-och registreringsverket, C‑456/19.

          The judgment is relevant in that it clarifies that the assessment of a sign’s distinctiveness should not always entail an assessment of norms and/or customs of the relevant economic sector .. at least under the 2008 Trade Mark Directive.


          The Applicant unsuccessfully appealed to the Swedish Patent and Market Court. This court dismissed the action since it could not be established that the colours and shape of the signs departed significantly from the manner in which other undertakings decorate their vehicles.

          The Applicant further appealed to the Swedish Patent and Market Court of Appeal, which decided to stay the proceedings and refer the following questions to the CJEU for a preliminary ruling:

          (1) Must Article 4(1)(b) of the EU Trade Mark Directive be interpreted as meaning that, in the case of an application for registration of a trade mark which designates services and where the application relates to a sign, placed in a particular position, which covers large areas of the physical objects used to perform the services, it must be assessed whether the mark is not independent of the appearance of the objects concerned?

      • Copyrights

        • FOSS Patents: Supreme Court inclined to affirm Federal Circuit's copyrightability holding in Oracle v. Google, possibly unanimously--fair use may be remanded

          Judge William H. Alsup of the United States District Court for the Northern District of California may go down in history as the only U.S. judge ever to have found that code related to application programming interfaces (APIs) is not copyrightable only because it's related to APIs. Or one of only two judges, should Associate Justice Sonia Sotomayor dissent from what otherwise looks like a unanimous affirmance of the Federal Circuit's copyrightability holding. But even Justice Sotomayor is at best having second thoughts and far from being totally in the tank for Google on this part.

          The points that Google's attorney, Thomas Goldstein, made on the copyrightability part were simply ridiculous (he's a fantastic lawyer--the problem is that Google has no non-copyrightability case), and in the first part, every one of the Justices asked questions that suggested a strong inclination to side with Oracle on this part.

          I've been saying for about ten years--and this case just celebrated its tenth anniversary in August--that regardless of the Merger Doctrine or any other theory, API declaring code is simply code. The Supreme Court of the United States made it clear today, and will do so in writing. I already considered this outcome quite likely when I looked at a procedural order three months ago.

        • FOSS Patents: Afraid of losing the Android-Java copyright case, Google was looking for patents to countersue Oracle, but failed to find any suitable ones

          I just published a detailed fact check that highlights at least ten major untruths Google's lawyer told the Supreme Court on Wednesday. Over the last 24 hours I received information on what was going on inside the Googleplex about four to five years ago. At that stage, Oracle had won its first Federal Circuit appeal against Google (the one over copyrightability), and the case had become a pure copyright case, as Oracle didn't pursue its patent infringement claims on appeal.

          There was a lot of concern on Google's part that they were going to lose the "fair use" retrial. So they were asking themselves what they could do to gain leverage.

          In the patent litigation context, the way most disputes between companies of the Oracle-Google type end is a cross-licensing deal: if both sides had "nuclear" patents, "mutually assured destruction" would ultimately solve the problem.

        • Bench reading: what the Supreme Court justices said about APIs being copyrightable in yesterday's Oracle v. Google hearing [Ed: Florian Mueller still favours copyrights on APIs, sadly...]

          Other than a potential remand of the "fair use" question to the Federal Circuit, Google cannot realistically hope for anything positive to come out of yesterday's Supreme Court hearing in Google v. Oracle America (petitioner v. respondent as opposed to plaintiff v. defendant): the Android maker's non-copyrightability defense has a snow flake's chance in hell.

          I wrote yesterday's triumphant post on the basis of having listened to the hearing on C-SPAN Radio (over the web). Now I'd like to go over what the justices said in the copyrightability context based on the transcript (PDF). I'll sort this by judge, in the order in which each judge first addressed this subject (seniority). And I'll then provide my interpretation.

        • FACT CHECK: Ten falsehoods and fallacies Google's lawyer told the Supreme Court about Oracle's Android-Java copyright case

          I live-tweeted about the Google v. Oracle America oral argument before the Supreme Court, and about five minutes into the hearing I already felt that Google was likely to lose the copyrightability part. After all justices had indicated where they stood on that question, or what they were interested in, there was no more doubt to me that Oracle will win that part by a unanimous or near-unanimous decision--but "fair use" is harder to predict, with a remand to the Federal Circuit being a possibility. Yesterday I published the justices' copyrightability statements/questions and commented on them.

          Timothy B. Lee, who opposes API copyrightability, wrote on Ars Technica that Google's Supreme Court faceoff with Oracle was a disaster for Google, and it appears the finger-pointing is already in full swing. Lots of law professors supported Google for ideological reasons and maybe because they were misled about the expressive and original nature of API declaring code. One of them, Cornell's James Grimmelmann, is quoted by Ars Technica as blaming Google's lead Supreme Court counsel, Thomas Goldstein, for having done "an abysmal job." I actually saw Mr. Goldstein at his best when he represented Qualcomm before a Ninth Circuit panel earlier this year, and I wouldn't attribute to his performance on Wednesday an outcome that can and actually must be explained with the spuriousness of Google's non-copyrightability argument. Of course, one could have tried to take a different angle on the issue, and Professor Grimmelmann would have preferred Mr. Goldstein to make a more coding-centric argument. Considering how the justices approached the subject, however, Mr. Goldstein's strategy might have been the better choice--just that declaring code is program code, and program code is copyrightable if it's original and expressive.

        • Google wins by kicking the can down the road: Oracle official

          A senior official at Oracle Corporation, which has been involved in a court case with Google over the last decade, has described the search giant as a company that "has mastered the art of winning by kicking the can down the road".

        • DISH Sues Former Reseller of Pirate IPTV Services SET TV and Simply-TV

          US-broadcaster DISH Network is suing a former reseller of IPTV services SET TV and Simply-TV in a Florida court. It's alleged that the defendant continued to sell pirate IPTV subscriptions under various brands, even after DISH obtained damages awards of $120m and an order to prevent ongoing violations.

        • BiglyBT is the First Torrent Client to Support the BitTorrent V2 Spec

          BiglyBT is the first torrent client to add full support for the BitTorrent v2 specification, including hybrid torrents. The client is far ahead of the curve as the first torrent site has yet to adopt the new specification. According to BiglyBT's developers, BitTorrent v2 offers several advantages, some of which will be clearly noticeable by users.

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