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Links 29/11/2020: Genode OS Framework 20.11, Linux 5.11 Kernel Changes, and Latest in KDE Itinerary

  • GNU/Linux

    • Linux Weekly Roundup: Blender 2.91, LibreOffice 7.1 Beta, Ardour 6.4

      Here's this week's roundup series, curated for you from the Linux and open-source world on application updates, new releases, distribution updates, major news, and upcoming highlights.

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • About Intel NUC Computer
      • About Asus Chromebox – Linux Hint

        In partnership with Google, Asus joined the bandwagon in reinventing desktops into smaller forms and integrating Chrome OS into it, breathing new life to the declining traditional forms. Asus Chromebox is an elegantly-styled, lightweight, compact, and versatile desktop. It’s highly favored by users who only need the basics of a desktop computer, such as web browsing, video streaming, and simple file processing. Furthermore, it has full support for Android apps on Google play. The price tag is also pocket-friendly, especially if you are content with lower-end models. There is also no need to install anti-virus software as the built-in security with Chrome OS automatically installs updates and fixes, keeping it safe from some malware and viruses. Although Asus Chromebox has not been the first in the market, it has been making waves since its introduction in 2014.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • Yacy Is The Search Engine That Respects Your Privacy - YouTube

        Yacy is a decentralized, peer-to-peer web search engine. All users are equal with no central controlling authority. Access to the search functions is made by a locally running web server which provides a search box to enter search terms, and returns search results in a similar format to other popular search engines.

      • Ubuntu 20.04 LTS Vs Ubuntu 20.10 | Which Is The BEST Version? | 7 THINGS To Consider - YouTube

        Ubuntu 20.10, Groovy Gorilla is out and like all non-LTS releases, this version is packed with new features and changes. We get a ton of improvements in the user interface especially. With GNOME 3.38 bringing many advancements like an adjustable Application grid, an efficient calendar and so much more to this new Ubuntu, We now have 2 actively supported versions of Ubuntu to choose from. And they both are quite different from each other in how they look, how they behave, their support period, their target user base, and many other things.

      • Picom: Window Blur Should Always Be This Easy - YouTube

        Window blur has been an absolute pain with picom, you've had run really out of date forks that have other missing features that you might want but no longer because it can be done in the main picom fork.

      • 5 Reasons Why KDE Plasma = Best Desktop Environment

        KDE Plasma is my favorite desktop environment on Linux. In this video, I offer my Top 5 Reasons why I think KDE Plasma is the best desktop environment for me.

    • Kernel Space

      • Pioneer DDJ-RR DJ Controller To Be Supported By The Linux 5.11 Kernel

        For aspiring DJs wanting to mix beats under Linux, the Pioneer DJ DDJ-RR controller should be working come Linux 5.11 early next year.

        The Pioneer DDJ-RR is quite a capable ~$699 USD DJ controller that offers the mixing potential of many higher-end Pioneer DDJ devices but at a lower price point and geared for introductory DJs. The DDJ-RR is a two-channel controller and offers all of the common dedicated controls most DJs would make use of while offering high quality audio output.

        The DDJ-RR is designed to be used under Windows with the Rekordbox DJ software. However, this DJ controller will now work with Linux 5.11+ so it can be used with software like the open-source Mixxx DJ software package.

      • Linux 5.11 Adds "Magic" To Support Guitar Hero Live PlayStation 3 / Wii U Dongles - Phoronix

        The latest bit of obscure hardware support set to arrive with Linux 5.11 are the PlayStation 3 and Nintendo Wii U dongles for the Guitar Hero Live.

        Should you be wanting to use a Guitar Hero Live device connected to your Linux system by means of a PlayStation 3 or Nintendo Wii U wireless dongle, that support will work early next year with Linux 5.11.

        Support has been queued into the hid-next code ahead of December's Linux 5.11 merge window. The PS3/Wii-U dongles share the same IDs for identifying the device, but beyond adding the device IDs there is some extra steps needed for support.

      • Mediatek DRM Driver Adding MT8167 Support In Linux 5.11 - Phoronix

        The Mediatek MT8167 SoC was announced four years ago already while for the Linux 5.11 kernel in early 2021 will finally be display support via the open-source Mediatek DRM driver.

        The Mediatek MT8167 SoC is used by several different Android tablets in recent years. Among the users of the SoC are the Acer Iconia One, Winnovo Tablet 8, Lenovo ZA400027US, and others. This SoC has two Cortex-A72 cores and four Cortex-A53 low-power cores. The 3D graphics are based on the PowerVR GX6250 but what's being supported with Linux 5.11 is just the display support for this SoC and not any PowerVR acceleration.

    • Applications

      • 5 Best Free and Open source NAS Software for Linux

        In the 21st century, huge innovations have been made in various sectors, particularly the technological region, which has completely changed the world’s dimensions. The strides at which new technology has been developed and improved upon from its predecessors would surely be something that our ancestors would marvel at.

        Humans have gone in a very short time from making stone arrows and straw huts to developing smartphones and automated robots, and these advancements are continuously growing without slowing down. However, this huge transition has also brought forward some adverse effects as our machines are now subjected to more cyber-attacks and security issues. Data is one of the most important factors in the world today, and it is exactly that which is the most vulnerable.

        Therefore, it is necessary to implement procedures that would help in keeping your data secure. One excellent way is to use NAS software, which helps in keeping backups of your data. This shall also be the topic of our discussion in this article, where we will be looking at the top 5 free and open-source NAS software available on Linux.

      • Best Photo Editors for Linux

        This article will cover a list of free and open-source image editors available for Linux. These applications feature basic tools for simple editing needs as well as advanced utilities for professional artists.


        If you are a regular Linux user, chances are that you must have heard about GIMP (GNU Image Manipulation Program) or used it to edit images. It is considered to be one of the most comprehensive, free, and open source image editing software available not only on Linux, but also on other operating systems like Windows and macOS. While some users may prefer proprietary tools like Photoshop over it, GIMP itself is packed with tons of features and can do almost everything that Photoshop is capable of. You can see all major features of GIMP available at here and here. GIMP can be extended using plugins, some of them come with the official installation while others can be downloaded from third party websites.



        RawTherapee is an open source image editing software specially designed for processing and handling “raw” images. You can also import and edit image files having other formats. RawTherapee features various utilities for processing raw images including color enhancement tools, compositing and masking utilities, pixel correction tools and HDR utilities.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • How to Install PHP 8 on CentOS 8 - Cloudbooklet

        How to Install PHP 8 on CentOS. This guide let you learn how install the latest PHP version 8 on your CentOS system or your CentOS server on any VPS or any Cloud or any Dedicated hosting and configure it with Httpd and Nginx.

        The latest PHP 8 version is officially released on November 26th, 2020. It comes with a number of new features and a few incompatibilities that you should be aware of before upgrading from the previous version.

        This installation is tested on Google Cloud Platform with a Compute Compute Engine VM Instance. So this set up is guaranteed to work on all Linux based servers.

      • How to install Jenkins on Ubuntu 20 in 7 simple steps

        In April of 2020, Ubuntu released Focal Fossa, the latest LTS version of the popular Linux distribution.

        As such, DevOps developers interested in taking advantage of the latest Ubuntu features in their CI builds are looking at performing an Jenkins installations of Ubuntu 20, which is exactly the focus of this tutorial.

      • How to run Jenkins builds on Docker

        If you’re Jenkins builds don’t use Docker, you’re not playing the continuous integration game on expert level.

        By delegating the compile, test, package and deploy steps to a Docker container, Jenkins installations don’t need to be supplemented with a suite of build tools such as Maven, Gradle or Ant. And environments that integrate Jenkins with Docker need not be bothered with the ongoing of maintenance and upkeep of quality control software such as Sonarcube or Nexus. Just use a pre-configured Docker container and your Jenkins builds get access to all of those resources, without the headache of managing and maintaining all of that peripheral software. The integration of Jenkins with Docker really is the smartest way to do continuous integration.

      • How to monitor file content while they change in Linux

        Monitoring file changes in a real time is very easy to do task in Linux System.

        Directory, files, logs, etc. Changes can be easily monitored in real-time with the help of the watch command.

        The watch is easy to use the program to monitor changes in files or directories in Linux. It’s come by pre-installed in all Debian and arch-based Linux System.

      • What option to use for ping constantly until you stop it? - Linux Shout

        The Ping program is a widely used tool to check the accessibility of a computer network. All operating systems available till now have the ability to run the Ping command with various options to even continuously check the network resource or connection availability. However, if a firewall suppresses ping packets on the way from your computer to the host, it can falsely appear to be unreachable.

        To do this, it sends echo request packets to the host via ICMP. Using the time difference between this and the response (echo reply), it calculates the runtime. Ping was defined in RFC 1574.

      • How to Cast Media from Ubuntu to Chromecast | FOSS Linux

        In this Ubuntu tutorial, we shall see ways to cast media from a Linux PC to a Chromecast device. We shall see command-line and GUI ways of casting the content.

      • How do I view Nginx logs? – Linux Hint

        Logs are very important in a system to monitor the activities of an application as they provide you with useful debugging information and enable you to analyze all aspects of a web server. Like the other software applications, Nginx also maintains events like your web site visitors, encountered problems, and more to log files. The useful recorded information is used to take preemptive measures in order to deal with major serious discrepancies in the log events.

        In this article, we will elaborate on how to configure and view Nginx Logs in Ubuntu 20.04 system to monitor the application activities.

        There are two types of logs where recorded events in Nginx one is the access log, and the other is the error log. If you have already enabled these logs in the Nginx core configuration file then, you can find both types of logs in /var/log/nginx in all Linux distributions.

      • How To Install PowerShell on CentOS 8 [Ed: Microsoft is just trying to turn GNU/Linux into its own thing, intended to serve Microsoft's bottom line and lock-in]
      • OSINT Tools and Techniques – Linux Hint

        OSINT, or Open Source Intelligence, is the act of gathering data from distributed and freely accessible sources. OSINT tools are used to gather and correspond data from the Web. Data is accessible in different structures, including text design, documents, images, etc. The analysis and collection of information from the Internet or other publicly available sources is known as OSINT or Open Source Intelligence. This is a technique used by intelligence and security companies to gather information. This article provides a look at some of the most useful OSINT tools and techniques.

      • How to Record Your Gnome Desktop in Ubuntu with built-in screen recorder – Linux Hint

        In the present era, the lives of the people have undergone a huge change from what it used to be a couple of years back. In the educational sector, books have fallen down the pecking order, and people now prefer watching videos explaining the concepts of their syllabus. A great example of this is YouTube, where videos on things like programming languages, economics, political science, and even geography are getting many viewers. The business sector has also gone through some innovation as now people can easily keep a record of important voice calls and conferences that might be needed for looking at the main highlights of the meeting. Even recording presentations and then sharing them with your clients or bosses have become the norm as this allows information to be passed from one to another in a much more efficient manner. All of these are just a few examples of why screen recorders are one of the most useful tools out there. Screen recorders can even be used for recording content that many people may find enjoyable, such as recording a game that might be on the rise in popularity or put up videos to explain any issues or problems that you might come across in your life, like checking to see how one can remove and adjust tires from a car. Hence, our discussion topic in this article is to look at how one can record their screens in Ubuntu using its default built-in screen recorder.

      • Blender Animation Nodes – Linux Hint

        Blender animation nodes is a visual scripting system made for motion graphics in Blender. Animation nodes are an addon that is available for macOS, Linux, and Windows.

        There are a lot of things which you just can imagine to animate by hand because it is a very difficult task. Animation Nodes allows us to make complex animation in a less complex and tedious way.

        Animation Nodes add-ons can save you a lot of time and has several advantages over traditional keyframing technique. For instance, you can avoid managing many keyframes, and each node tree can be used for any objects; you don’t have to keyframe them every time.

      • Blender Animation Loops – Linux Hint

        Blender is a powerful 3D creation tool. Blender holds all the attributes that a 3D artist needs. Sometimes a short movie tells a lot than an image. Making 3D scenes in Blender is great, but animating it is another level of mastering this program. So, it is essential to know about adding motion to 3D objects.

        Animation is an excellent way to connect and communicate with people; that’s why it is vital in the business world. Conveying a message through animation is considerably more appealing than images. Whether it is education or businesses, the film industry, or gaming, animation is being used everywhere.

    • Games

      • Inspired by the likes of Cube World, open source RPG Veloren has the biggest update yet | GamingOnLinux

        Currently in development and not yet considered a full game but still very impressive anyway, Veloren is a free and open source multiplayer voxel RPG. Inspired by the likes of Cube World, Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Dwarf Fortress and Minecraft it's a very exciting project to be following. Written in the popular Rust programming language it fully supports Linux, macOS and Windows.

        This latest release is the biggest yet, with overhauls to various parts of the game as well as introducing plenty of new features to keep players busy.


        The full source code is up on GitLab.

      • Godot Engine - Godot's 2D engine gets several improvements for upcoming 4.0

        While the focus of Godot 4.0 Vulkan rewrite has largely been enhancements to the 3D engine, the 2D side will also see several improvements.

        Improved Performance

        Thanks to Vulkan (which has a much lower draw-call cost than OpenGL), 2D itself in Godot 4.0 will see a speedup for free. But that's not the only reason, many internal improvements and optimizations also contribute to a smoother experience. Changes in memory allocation strategy and internal simplification in draw call logic make it much more efficient to manually call thousands of draw() functions from a node's _draw() callback. Many of these improvements will also accelerate GLES3 and GLES2 back-ends.

        Improved 2D lighting

        Godot 3.x supported 2D lighting, but this did not happen without several constraints. The main one was performance due to every light being rendered in a separate draw pass. This is no longer a problem in 4.0, as all lights are drawn in a single pass.

      • 8 best casual Linux computer games

        Are you in the mood for some casual computer games on your Linux PC like Solitare or Chess, or Sudoku? Don’t know the first thing about installing these types of video games on your Linux PC? If so, follow along as we go over the 8 best casual Linux computer games!

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • October/November in KDE Itinerary

          A lot has happened around KDE Itinerary in the past two months again, since the last summary blog. All components will be part of the KDE release service starting with the 20.12 series, we got a new backend server for the station maps, arrival and departure platforms are now properly identified, and much more.


          The biggest news behind the scenes is that the new backend for is now finally live! This gives us up-to-date OSM data for the train station maps, with a lot more detail and various precision loss issues fixed. Most visible is probably that we now also see platform section labels and ticket machines, as well as almost all geometry reassembly glitches being fixed now.

          This work not only helps KDE Itinerary, but also the primary user of this system, Marble. A big thank you to the sysadmin team for making that happen!

          A number of things are happening around KDE’s Android infrastructure as well, which KDE Itinerary relies upon. See the dedicated post on that.

    • Distributions

      • BSD

        • How to install FreeBSD on Raspberry Pi? (step-by-step guide)

          FreeBSD is an original operating system you can install on Raspberry Pi to experiment a bit outside Linux. But the process is not always easy if you are used to working on Debian-like systems.

          Today, we’ll see how to install it on a Raspberry Pi, to configure it and use it like almost like any other operating system.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • Ken Hess (Red Hat): Cyber Week 2020: 13 ideas for what to buy the sysadmin in your life | Enable Sysadmin

          It's that special time of year when you can get great discounts on tech for your favorite sysadmin.

        • [IBM Emeritus] Irving Wladawsky-Berger: Are There Limits to the Predictability of Elections?

          The elegant mathematical models of classical mechanics depict a world in which objects exhibit deterministic behaviors. These models make perfect predictions within the accuracy of their human-scale measurements.

          But, once you start dealing with atoms, molecules and exotic subatomic particles, you find yourself in a very different world, one with somewhat counter-intuitive behaviors governed by the laws of quantum mechanics. The orderly, predictable models of classical physics have now given way to wave functions, uncertainty principles, quantum tunneling and wave-particle dualities.

          But, the world of the very small is not the only one with non-deterministic behaviors. So are highly complex systems, especially those systems whose components and interrelationships are themselves quite complex. This is the case with social systems, which are based on individuals, groups, and institutions. It’s quite a challenge to make accurate predictions in such systems due to the the dynamic nature of human behaviors. Terms, like emergence, long tails, and butterfly effects - every bit as fanciful as quarks, charm and strangeness, - are part of the social systems lexicon.

          Which brings us to the 2020 US election. “The polls were wrong again, and much of America wants to know why,” wrote NY Times journalist David Leonhardt in a recent article. “This is a disaster for the polling industry and for media outlets and analysts that package and interpret the polls for public consumption, such as FiveThirtyEight, The New York Times’ Upshot, and The Economist’s election unit,” said David Graham in The Atlantic.

        • [Red Hat] Why failure should be normalized and how to do it |

          All of your heroes have failures under their belts—from minor mistakes to major disasters. Nobody knows how to do everything automatically, and the process of learning is usually a messy one. So why is the perception that everyone but you knows what they’re doing so common? Why do we externalize our successes but internalize our failures?

          How does it make you feel when you struggle to learn something new, then see another person take their Jira card away and return at the end of the sprint with something fully fleshed out and working, gushing about it at the demo? Sure, you closed your card too, but it was really hard! There was a new algorithm, a new programming language, a new system all to be learned. How did she make it look so effortless?

          The truth is, she might have struggled with the same issues you did and wondered how you made it look so effortless!


          It could be very easy to title this section "my mistakes" and then rattle off all the times I’ve made mistakes, but that doesn’t quite illustrate the point. I recognize these mistakes, but they’re also events that expanded the understanding of my craft. While I didn’t set out to intentionally do any of these things, I certainly learned from them.

          I have accidentally dropped (deleted) a customer’s database. It was lucky for everyone that it was a beta-phase database and no further harm was done. I learned a valuable lesson that day: be very watchful of what code is doing, and be careful about what environment you are working in.

          One day, while performing routine maintenance with an odd DNS setup, I accidentally broke the ability for customers to provide credit card information to the secure site. We had two "payments" DNS records that served to override a wildcard DNS record, and I assumed that the second "payments" record was still present. It wasn’t. And then the wildcard record took over, and the DNS started behaving like "payments" wasn’t special at all anymore. Of course, I had no idea this was happening at all—it wasn’t until my maintenance was over that I learned of the folly.

          Customers weren’t able to provide payment information for almost two hours! I learned my lesson, though: when there is something special about a particular configuration, be sure to make sure it stays special throughout its lifetime. When DNS gets involved, all kinds of things can break.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Release notes for the Genode OS Framework 20.11

        With Genode 20.11, we focused on the scalability of real-world application workloads, and nurtured Genode's support for 64-bit ARM hardware. We thereby follow the overarching goal to run highly sophisticated Genode-based systems on devices of various form factors.

        When speaking of real-world workloads, we acknowledge that we cannot always know the exact behavior of applications. The system must deal gracefully with many unknowns: The roles and CPU intensity of threads, the interplay of application code with I/O, memory-pressure situations, or the sudden fragility of otherwise very useful code. The worst case must always be anticipated. In traditional operating systems, this implies that the OS kernel needs to be aware of certain behavioral patterns of the applications, and has to take decisions based on heuristics. Think of CPU scheduling, load balancing among CPU cores, driving power-saving features of the hardware, memory swapping, caching, and responding to near-fatal situations like OOM.

        Genode allows us to move such complex heuristics outside the kernel into dedicated components. Our new CPU balancer described in Section CPU-load balancing is a living poster child of our approach. With this optional component, a part of a Genode system can be subjected to a CPU-load balancing policy of arbitrary complexity without affecting the quality of service of unrelated components, and without polluting the OS kernel with complexity.

        A second aspect of real-world workloads is that they are usually not designed for Genode. To accommodate the wealth of time tested applications, we need to bridge the massive gap between APIs of olde (think of POSIX) and Genode's clean-slate interfaces. Section Streamlined ioctl handling in the C runtime / VFS shows how the current release leverages our novel VFS concept for the emulation of traditional ioctl-based interfaces. So useful existing applications come to live without compromising the architectural benefits of Genode.

        Platform-wise, the new release continues our mission to host Genode-based systems such as Sculpt OS on 64-bit ARM hardware. This work entails intensive development of device drivers and the overall driver architecture. Section Sculpt OS on 64-bit ARM hardware (i.MX8 EVK) reports on the achievement of bringing Sculpt to 64-bit i.MX8 hardware. This line of work goes almost hand in hand with the improvements of our custom virtual machine monitor for ARM as outlined in Section Multicore virtualization on ARM.

      • Genode OS Framework 20.11 Brings Dynamic CPU Load Balancing, 64-bit ARM Sculpt OS

        Genode as an original operating system framework that has been in development for more than a decade is out with a new release. The Genode OS based Sculpt OS as their "general purpose OS" push is also updated.

        This year the Genode Labs crew has been working a lot on the ARM architecture support and that is still a theme for this cycle. Genode OS Framework 20.11 brings Sculpt OS to 64-bit ARM and adds support for multi-core virtualization on ARM. The Sculpt OS 64-bit ARM focus so far is on the NXP i.MX8 EVK development board.

      • OpenClinic GA: 500+ worldwide hospital Implementation with ~500 weekly downloads

        OpenClinic GA is an open-source hospital information management system (HIMS) which covers all aspects of running small and medium-sized hospitals.

        The project started back 2010 as a hospital information system by a group of developers, doctors and experienced hospital managers.

        It's built as a cross-platform, self-hosted and on-premise system for low-resources hospitals.

        For weeks OpenClinic GA is getting hundreds of download hits at This week it gets ~700 downloads so far. Unfortunately, there is no easy way to measure the community and how many users does it have.

        The web user interface for OpenClinic GA is working seamlessly on all popular web browsers like Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox and Opera. However, the user-interface certainly require more work to fit for smaller screens and resolutions.

      • Web Browsers

        • Mozilla

          • Auditing the CRLs in CRLite ● Insufficient.Coffee

            Since Firefox Nightly is now using CRLite to determine if enrolled websites’ certificates are revoked, it’s useful to dig into the data to answer why a given certificate issuer gets enrolled or not.

            Ultimately this is a matter of whether the CRLs for a given issuer are available to CRLite, and are valid, but the Internet is a messy place, and sometimes things don’t work as planned. If an issuing CA is not enrolled in CRLite, the Mozilla infrastructure emits enough information to figure out what went wrong.

      • Productivity Software/LibreOffice/Calligra

        • OpenOffice Still Gets +1.5 Million Downloads Per Month, Despite Being Discontinued

          OpenOffice started as the open source version of “StarOffice” by Sun Microsystems in 1999. It continued to be a the mainstream Microsoft Office alternative through the 2000s and kept improving over time, until a community fork happened in 2011 after Oracle acquired Sun. The community feared that Oracle would shut down the project due to its past dark history against open source software and didn’t want to participate in a project under its control. Hence, LibreOffice was born in 2011 and most community members started working on LibreOffice instead of OpenOffice.

          Oracle found itself in a tough spot since most of the community migrated to the new fork, and hence decided to contribute the ownership of OpenOffice in the same year to the Apache Foundation. The Apache Foundation from its side continued the development a little bit for a while (Until 2016-2017) but then, OpenOffice stopped reciving any major updates.

          The latest available version of OpenOffice right now is 4.1.8, which was released this month, but is nothing more than a bug-fixing release with no new features. Versions 4.1.7 and 4.1.6 were released in 2019 and 2018 respectively, and they also contained nothing more than few fixes (5-10) for some bugs. OpenOffice didn’t receive any major update since 2014, so this should give you a picture on how slow and discontinued the development is on the project.

      • Programming/Development

        • Announcing Rustup 1.23.0 | Rust Blog

          The rustup working group is happy to announce the release of rustup version 1.23.0. Rustup is the recommended tool to install Rust, a programming language that is empowering everyone to build reliable and efficient software.


          The Rust team releases a new version every six weeks, bringing new features and bugfixes on a regular basis. Sometimes a regression slips into a stable release, and the team releases a "point release" containing fixes for that regression. For example, 1.45.1 and 1.45.2 were point releases of Rust 1.45.0, while 1.46.0 and 1.47.0 both had no point releases.

          With rustup 1.22.1 or earlier if you wanted to use a stable release you were able to either install stable (which automatically updates to the latest one) or a specific version number, such as 1.48.0, 1.45.0 or 1.45.2. Starting from this release of rustup (1.23.0) you can also install a minor version without specifying the patch version, like 1.48 or 1.45. These "virtual" releases will always point to the latest patch release of that cycle, so rustup toolchain install 1.45 will get you a 1.45.2 toolchain.

        • Book club: Rust after the honeymoon

          One of the first areas we discussed was data bearing enums – these have been very important to Bryan. In keeping with a pattern we all noted these take a construct that’s relatively commonly implemented by hand in C (or skipped as too much effort, as Lars found) and provides direct support in the language for it. For both Daniel and Lars this has been key to their enjoyment of Rust, it makes things that are good practice or common idioms in C and C++ into first class language features which makes them more robust and allows them to fade into the background in a way they can’t when done by hand.

          [...] This distracted us a bit from the actual content of the article and we had an interesting discussion of the issues with handling OS differences in filenames portably. Rather than mapping filenames onto a standard type within the language and then have to map back out into whatever representation the system actually uses Rust has an explicit type for filenames which must be explicitly converted on those occasions when it’s required, meaning that a lot of file handling never needs to worry about anything except the OS native format and doesn’t run into surprises. This is in keeping with Rust’s general approach to interfacing with things that can’t be represented in its abstractions, rather than hide things it keeps track of where things that might break the assumptions it makes are and requires the programmer to acknowledge and handle them explicitly. Both Lars and Daniel said that this made them feel a lot more confident in the code that they were writing and that they had a good handle on where complexity might lie, Lars noted that Rust is the first languages he’s felt comfortable writing multi threaded code in.

        • Top 4 Most Popular Programming Languages in November 2020

          When starting out in the programming world, beginners often face the dilemma of choosing which programming language to learn first. Questions like, ‘What are the most popular programming languages,’ ‘Will the chosen language have any relevance in the future,’ ‘Where to learn to code,’ ‘Learning which language will provide more benefits professionally”, continue to rattle the minds. At the same time, while we worry about lagging in the fast-paced technological world, new programming languages (Elm, Rust, Kotlin, Elixir, Crystal, etc.) emerge, poised to overtake an older one. Furthermore, learning to code these languages is important as they provide programmers a crucial medium of connecting humans to computers. Since computers cannot comprehend the languages of the common man, these programmed commands can be used to control the behavior and output of a machine through accurate algorithms. Hence, helping us harness the power of computing in all human endeavors and projects.

        • 2D Array – Linux Hint

          A Two-dimensional (2D) array is an array of one dimensional (1D) arrays. The 1D array sizes are equal. The 2D array is also called a matrix with rows and columns.

        • Python

          • Python Ternary Operator – Linux Hint

            Ternary operators are Python built-in conditional operators that are used to evaluate the defined conditions. It evaluates the condition for being true or false. Like the if-else statement, it is another way of defining conditional statements. The ternary operator is defined in the single line. The if-else statement and ternary operator returns a similar output. The ternary operator was introduced in Python version 2.5. This article explains the Python ternary operator in detail with examples.

          • Python zfill() Function – Linux Hint

            Owing to the versatility and availability of vast built-in modules, functions, and statements, Python is now a widely-used general-purpose programming language. The Python built-in features help programmers to perform complicated tasks very simply and efficiently. The zfill() is a Python built-in function that zeros on the left of the string to fill the specified width and return the string’s copy. It makes a padded string by adding zeros. This article demonstrates the use of the Python zfill() function.

  • Leftovers

    • New technological behaviours will outlast the pandemic

      Call it tech-celeration. In all these cases, and in many others, the pandemic has accelerated existing trends of technological adoption. Shopping was steadily moving online; payments were slowly going digital; online learning was slowly becoming more prevalent; more people were working from home, at least some of the time. Now people in many countries have been abruptly propelled into a future where all of these behaviours are far more widespread.

    • Diego Maradona (1960-2020): Some Bittersweet Reflections
    • Health/Nutrition

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Security

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • UK expected to bring forward Huawei ban to September 2021

              The UK will announce on Monday that it is bringing forward to September 2021 the date for banning the use of 5G equipment from Chinese telecommunications equipment vendor Huawei Technologies, a report claims.

            • China ties: time for some quiet diplomacy, or businesses will suffer

              Naive. That is the word that comes to mind when one reads the musings of Australian journalists reacting to China's move to impose additional tariffs on Australian wine, just the latest reaction from Beijing to show Canberra that it can hurt the country's economy if it so wishes.

            • China Runs Trials pf Biometric Online ID Card in Two Provinces

              The Ministry of Public Security is trialing an online ID card in the southeastern province of Fujian and the southern province of Guangdong, prior to rolling it out nationwide, sources said.

              China has long required its [Internet] users to register for online accounts using their real names, backed up by a smart national ID card.

              However, applicants for the new online card will be required to supply biodata including facial scans and a fingerprint to police before they can access certain online services, according to recent state media reports.

            • EU promises new guidelines against foreign spying in universities and labs | Science|Business

              The European Commission on Wednesday promised to publish new guidelines in 2021 on foreign interference targeting EU universities and higher education institutions, as part of a broader strategy to strengthen and simplify patent protection, while preventing foreign countries from wrongfully acquiring European research and innovation assets.

              The commission says it will “stand ready” to use “restrictive measures” to counter private and government-sponsored cyber espionage “aimed at acquiring cutting-edge European IP assets”.

              In March, the EU officials felt the need to step in and scupper an alleged attempt by US President Donald Trump to gain access to COVID-19 vaccine knowledge held by German biotech firm CureVac.

              The commission also calls out the insufficient IP protection for EU firms operating abroad, and pledges to in place, “new framework conditions for international research cooperation in non-EU countries”.

              “Our businesses still face great challenges when operating in non-EU countries, including weak IP rules and enforcement, forced technology transfer and other unfair practices such as limitations in IP ownership,” the commission document says.

    • Defence/Aggression

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • Gender Activists Are Trying to Cancel My Book. Why is Silicon Valley Helping Them?

        This is, more or less, most people’s reaction to the efforts to suppress my book. It isn’t that they agree with censorship per se. But you also can’t go setting fires without expecting Big Tech’s cops to shut them down. “If you’re going to talk about the trans thing, I mean, what did you expect?” I think the agent may have said those very words.

        Except that I didn’t write about “the trans thing.” I wrote specifically about the sudden, severe spike in transgender identification among adolescent girls. I fully support medical transition for mature adults. And I have no desire to be a provocateur. (I dislike pointless provocation, in part because I think provocateurs often have a good argument—one they’re too lazy or inept to make). Nor do I have any prurient interest in others’ social lives.

        What I aim to do, as a journalist, is to investigate cultural phenomena, and here was one worth investigating: Between 2016 and 2017, the number of females seeking gender surgery quadrupled in the United States. Thousands of teen girls across the Western world are not only self-diagnosing with a real dysphoric condition they likely do not have; in many cases, they are obtaining hormones and surgeries following the most cursory diagnostic processes. Schoolteachers, therapists, doctors, surgeons, and medical-accreditation organizations are all rubber-stamping these transitions, often out of fear that doing otherwise will be reported as a sign of “transphobia”—despite growing evidence that most young people who present as trans will eventually desist, and so these interventions will do more harm than good.

    • Freedom of Information/Freedom of the Press

      • French Protesters, Police Clash Over New Security Legislation

        In a sign that the government could be preparing to backtrack, Prime Minister Jean Castex announced Friday that he would appoint a commission to redraft Article 24.

      • The State You May Not Criticise

        In the 15 year history of this blog, I have criticised the Human Rights records of states including Bahrain, Belarus, Brazil, Burma, Cameroon, China, Ecuador, Egypt, France, Germany, Hungary, India, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Ivory Coast, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Libya, the Maldives, the Netherlands, Norway, Pakistan, Poland, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Sweden, Syria, Tajikistan, Thailand, Togo, Turkey, Uganda, the United Kingdom, the United States, Uzbekistan, Venezuela and Zimbabwe.

      • French lawmakers pass controversial bill that restricts the publication of images of police

        French lawmakers passed a bill on Tuesday that critics say could make it harder for journalists and human rights advocates to hold police accountable.

        The Global Security Bill's most controversial section -- Article 24 -- which was approved by lawmakers on Friday, forbids the publication of images that allow the identification of a law enforcement officer "with the intent to cause them harm, physically or mentally."

        The bill -- which has been the subject of much criticism and several protests -- was amended by the government, lawmakers say, to ensure the freedom of the press.

        Now that the bill has been passed by the National Assembly, it will head to the Senate in December.

      • Protests over security law as France reels from police violence

        One of the most controversial elements of the new law is Article 24, which would criminalise the publication of images of on-duty police officers with the intent of harming their "physical or psychological integrity".

        It was passed by the National Assembly last week -- although it is awaiting Senate approval -- provoking rallies and protests across France.

        Rally organisers are calling for the article to be withdrawn, claiming that it contradicts "the fundamental public freedoms of our Republic".

        "This bill aims to undermine the freedom of the press, the freedom to inform and be informed, the freedom of expression," one of Saturday's protest organisers said.

        Trade unions are expected to join the demonstrations, with members of the yellow vests -- whose sometimes violent protests in 2018 and 2019 shook the country -- also expected.

      • WikiLeaks 'Cablegate' 10 years on: An unvarnished look at US foreign policy

        November 28, 2010, was the day the bomb dropped — with five leading Western publications initiating the simultaneous publication of secrets from the engine room of American diplomacy. Their raw material: 251,287 documents from the superpower's State Department, most of them top secret and confidential, gathered by American embassies around the world. Together, they gave a less than pretty picture of US foreign policy.

        The embassy cables had been made available to the publications by the whistle-blowing website WikiLeaks. Never before had journalists been able to access such a large cache of secrets at once. Among other things, they proved that Washington had instructed its diplomats to spy on people working at the United Nations, up to and including the UN secretary-general. The cables also revealed that Arab states had called for airstrikes on Iranian nuclear installations, that Beijing was losing patience with North Korean dictator Kim Jong-Il, and included many unflattering assessments of leading politicians in the American diplomats' host countries.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • A Global Police State Is Emerging as World Capitalism Descends Into Crisis
      • Ahmadinejad Makes Controversial Remarks About Iran's Hijab Law

        During his presidency, Ahmadinejad enjoyed the support of extremist groups of fundamentalists and clerics, such as Ayatollah Mesbah Yazdi. Nasiri was also a student of Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei, and the editor-in-chief of an extremist weekly, Sobh (Morning).

        Responding to Ahmadinejad's unprecedented remarks about the hijab, Nasiri reminded him of the comments made by the supporters of the law, referring to Khamenei's speech he made when responding to the widespread protests against compulsory hijab in March 2018. At the time, Khamenei defended the mandatory Islamic dress code and argued that it prevented "sexual harassment," and categorically dismissed the argument that everyone should be free to choose their clothing and maintained that such reasoning could apply to all other "social sins."

      • Kentucky cop slugs man livestreaming an arrest with ‘solid left hook’

        Bennett can be heard on his Facebook livestream saying he was, “Doing his due diligence as a citizen” by documenting the arrest and, “This might be the most boring live video ever.”

        That is, until three minutes later when the cops realize they’re being filmed.

        Two officers approached Bennett. When one of the men asked to see his ID. Bennett refuses and asks why to which the officer replies: “You’re filming a crime scene investigation… and you’re involved.”

        After Bennett again refused to produce ID the the officer grabs for the phone and hits Bennett. The livestream ends shortly after that.

        Bennett was issued a citation for menacing and resisting arrest which described the hit as an “Empty strike” – a claim Bennett refutes, saying he was hit with a “solid left hook” and had to be checked out by EMTs on the scene and a doctor a day later.

    • Monopolies

      • Impact of TPP on International, Regional and other Plurilateral IP Norm Setting

        In the wake of recent signing of the U.S. led Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) between twelve Pacific-Rim countries on 4 February 2016, need has arisen for analysing the impact of plurilateral intellectual property (IP) negotiations like TPP and Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) as opposed to that of the multilateral IP negotiations at forums like World Trade Organization (WTO) and World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). The paper describes the meaning of multilateral and plurilateral agreements and the reasons for the shift from former to the latter. It then analyses the negatives and positives of plurilateral agreements. Further, it provides a critical comparative analysis of some of the patent law provisions of the TPP and Agreement on Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property (TRIPS) to illustrate how the plurilateral IP agreements may take away the flexibilities that TRIPS allows to its members considering the different stages of development they are in and thereby adversely impact public interest. Lastly, the paper analyses the impact of the plurilateral negotiations, especially that of TPP, on multilateral, regional as well as other plurilateral IP-norm setting.

      • Patents

        • EU pharma strategy has patients and collaboration at its heart [Ed: Patent extremists portray patents as "collaboration" -- the very opposite of what these are]

          Plans to cut the time it takes to gain regulatory approval for medicines and medical devices, and drive the development of new antibiotics and other products for treating rare diseases, have been outlined in a wide-ranging new pharmaceutical strategy for Europe.

        • EC sets out a pharmaceutical strategy for Europe [Ed: Another typical 'Big Pharma' propaganda in 'article' clothing]
        • MSF welcomes EU pharmaceutical strategy but challenges key intellectual property issue - Express Pharma

          MSF’s Access Campaign welcomes the European Commission’s (EC) pharmaceutical strategy for Europe and its objective on improving access to affordable medicines and medical tools through increased transparency and a review of its intellectual property (IP) incentives framework, yet this objective risks being hollow because of the Commission’s proposal for a simplified (unitary) Supplementary Protection Certificate (SPC) system in Europe.

        • Compulsory licensing is not an effective policy tool, warns EU biopharma group as it reacts to European IP action plan

          The European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA) gave a cautious welcome to the EU action plan on intellectual property (IP), published yesterday, expressing alarm, though, over proposals within it on compulsory licensing. The group praised the EU Commission’s commitment to launch a unified supplementary protection certificate (SPC) grant mechanism and/or to create a unitary SPC title; it said this move will bring more certainty, predictability and cost-effectiveness to everyone involved in the discovery, development and use of medicines in Europe.

        • Unified Patent Court: Poison pill for future of EU integration [Ed: Bill Gates-funded propaganda site is spreading lies for the monopolists who push the UNCONSTITUTIONAL UPC ahead of the German vote]

          If the UPCA system is put in place, there will be in practice no possibility for the EU legislator (European Parliament in particular) to define the substantive patent rules regarding Unitary patents and European patents (for instance favouring green innovations, adapting patent rules for software or medicines).

        • The EU has the chance to seize global patent leadership [Ed: IAM spreading the UPC propaganda EPO paid it to spread. UPC isn't good for Europe, it's for patent trolls and monopolies from outside Europe]

          Developments this week in Brussels and Germany mean that the European Union now has the chance to put itself at the very top of the global patent decision-making tree

          Working weeks do not get much bigger for patents in Europe than the one that has just finished.

          Wednesday not only saw the publication of the European Commission’s long-awaited IP Action Plan, but also the decision by the Dusseldorf Regional Court to refer a series of SEP and FRAND-related questions to the Court of Justice of the European Union.

          Then the next day, Germany’s Bundestag voted overwhelmingly to approve the country’s ratification of the Unified Patent Court agreement, so bringing a pan-EU litigation and unitary patent system, that many had considered dead, back to life.

        • Recent amendments to the SPC Regulation [Ed: More of IAM, pushing for 'Big Pharma' monopolies (not that pertinent nations outside the EU are any better); they buy whatever laws they want…]

          In the life sciences industry, patent protection for innovative medicinal products is pivotal to the commercial success of new drug products. Before commercially exploiting such an invention, the patentee must obtain a regulatory marketing authorisation for the medicinal product from a competent health authority, such as the European Medicines Agency, which may take several years.

        • China and U.S. Rank Even in Wireless Communication Patent Applications Worldwide Through October 2020

          According to a study released November 19, 2020 by Incopat, China and the U.S. are running even on worldwide wireless communication patent application publications from January to October 2020. Specifically, in the field of H04W (wireless communication networks), which includes 5G, China and the U.S. both have 32% of the worldwide published patent applications. Japan comes in third with 15%. The top Chinese filer was Huawei with 8,607 published patent applications and the top U.S. filer was Qualcomm with 5,807 published patent applications.

        • Land Rover's Long-Lasting Patent Dispute with VW Group Turns Ugly

          Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) is suing Volkswagen Group to stop it from selling its high-end SUVs from VW, Audi, and Porsche in the U.S. market because they use an off-road mode similar to Land Rover's.JLR says the off-road mode, first seen on a VW product in the Bentley Bentayga, infringes on the Land Rover Terrain Response system patent.The most recent set of lawsuits was filed on November 19 and targets the Audi A6 Allroad, Q5, Q7, and Q8; the Lamborghini Urus; and the Porsche Cayenne and Volkswagen Tiguan, as Bloomberg News first reported.Jaguar Land Rover has filed a set of lawsuits demanding that its rival, the Volkswagen Group, be forbidden to sell new VW, Audi, and Porsche SUVs in the United States. That’s a huge ask, but it started very small: with the chrome dial on the Bentley Bentayga’s center console, the one encircled by cactuses and snowflakes.It was a quiet spat until last week, when JLR in one day launched four U.S. lawsuits in two states and an unfair trade complaint against the entire VW Group. JLR, after years of unsuccessful negotiations with one of its largest competitors, now wants the U.S. to ban the importation of nearly every new VW, Audi, and Porsche with an off-road mode.

        • No, the government cannot seize, break or 'bypass' pharmaceutical patents — even for COVID-19 [Ed: The Hill still platform for patent maximalists looking to make a killing from COVID-19 using patents and monopolies]
        • The Effect of New Information on Patent Litigation: Evidence from U.S. Inter Partes Review

          We analyze the effect of new information on the subsequent behavior of litigants in patent cases. A party accused of patent infringement in the U.S. may – in parallel with defending itself in court – additionally challenge the validity of the allegedly infringed patent by petitioning the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB), an administrative tribunal within the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. PTAB validity challenges generate new information at several points in time, and this new information can directly affect the district court case. We study this effect empirically, with a focus on settlement. Using data on U.S. district court cases and PTAB validity challenges initiated between 2012 and 2016, we examine each of the three main events that comprise a PTAB proceeding: (i) the filing of a petition to challenge a patent’s validity, (ii) PTAB’s decision to grant or deny the petition based on its assessment of a “reasonable likelihood” of invalidity, and (iii) PTAB’s final determination of the patent’s validity. We find that all three decision points have large effects on the settlement of parallel court proceedings. While the filing of a petition increases the likelihood of settlement, we find to the contrary that PTAB’s preliminary assessment of validity reduces the odds of settlement. Moreover, we find that the effect of the PTAB’s final decision depends on whether the patent is determined to be valid or (partially) invalid.

        • Call for industry views on AI and IP and ViCo

          In the last 3 years, several intellectual property offices have invited the global IP community to express our views on what we need from them and from legislators. The EPO has been very open – consulting on its quality and efficiency initiatives (via SACEPO), an idea for flexible timing of examination, its strategic plan, its Guidelines for Examination, and the Rules of Procedure of its Boards of Appeal. All of WIPO, USPTO, EPO and the UKIPO have been consulting on artificial intelligence and IP.

          This is excellent and AA Thornton attorneys have enjoyed the debates – including learning from industry experts about your requirements from the global patent system that exists to serve you. For those industry experts who have not yet joined the debate on AI and IP, we call upon you to express your views – let’s tell the IP offices what you need. Some of the consultations will close very soon.

        • Software Patents

          • António Campinos: AI-inventor dilemma will take ‘years’ to solve

            EPO president discusses AI inventorship rules and video hearings, and explains why staff will eventually return to the office

          • Swiss Federal Supreme Court confirms when the Display of Information is a Technical Feature that can Provide an Inventive Step

            Is an animated lung on a display of a ventilator machine merely an unpatentable display of information or is it a technical feature that can provide an inventive step? For the first time, the Swiss Federal Supreme Court spoke on the issue that such graphical user interfaces can be technical, and affirmed a Swiss Federal Patent Court’s decision (see BGer 4A_609/2019, July 16, 2020 affirming BPatGer O2017_007 of November 1, 2019). The Courts‘ holdings are in line with the case law of the EPO’s Boards of Appeal and lay out the requirements that can render the display of information technical for purposes of the European Patent Convention (EPC).

            In this case going back to 2017, the Federal Patent Court prohibited imtmedical AG (IMT, in the meantime, has been acquired by Vyaire Medical) from trading certain ventilating machines because they infringed Hamilton Medical AG’s Swiss designation of the EP 1 984 805 B1 patent. IMT appealed to the Federal Supreme Court, claiming, among other things, that the patent concerns non-patentable subject matter under Art. 52 EPC, and that the graphical features were non-technical and could not contribute to an inventive step under Art. 56 EPC. The Federal Supreme Court dismissed the appeal and affirmed the Swiss Federal Patent Court’s decision.

            Hamilton’s patent concerns medical machines called ventilators that physically move breathable air into and out of a patient’s lung to deliver breaths when the patient is unable to breathe himself. Similar machines are frequently in the news now for COVID-19 treatment. The patent is also about the machine’s display: it claims inter alia an animated lung that contracts and expands with every breath of the patient, and uses graphical elements to illustrate a number of relevant machine parameters in this single, graphical animation.

          • LinkedIn Sued For Patent Infringement

            On Friday in the District of Delaware, plaintiff eBuddy Technologies B.V. filed a complaint against LinkedIn Corporation for patent infringement alleging that LinkedIn infringed the patents-in-suit through its contact aggregation and event notifications.

            The patents-in-suit are United States Patent Nos. 8,510,395 (the ’395 patent); 9,584,453 (the ’453 patent); 8,230,135 (the ’135 patent); and 8,402,179 (the ’179 patent). According to the complaint, the ’395 and ’453 patents describe “contact aggregation between different messaging services” and the ’135 and ’179 patents describe “event notification.”

            The ’395 patent generally comprises an “arrangement of communications between networks of messaging service providers, including to login in or facilitate login to a network including to aggregate contacts into a contacts database that is a technical improvement to the communications between the devices and web services…” The plaintiff asserted that LinkedIn infringed this technology and method.

      • Trademarks

        • Never Too Late: if you missed The IPKat last week

          Former GuestKat Antonella Gentile reported on the EUIPO’s recent Tertulia on Boards of Appeal Case Law. The cases discussed during the event (and analysed by Antonella in her report) covered issues of trademarks containing names of drugs and terms referring to strains/variants of cannabis plants, conceptual comparison when establishing the likelihood of confusion, and substantial aspects of online evidence.

      • Copyrights

        • MPA Hits MediaBox HD on Github: "Massive" Movie & TV Show Piracy

          Under the banner of the MPA, the major Hollywood studios plus Netflix have filed a complaint with Github resulting in the removal of popular streaming app MediaBox HD. The takedown is the latest in a series setbacks for the Android-based movie and TV show piracy app which was previously mentioned in legal action unrelated to the MPA.

        • Court Orders GoDaddy to Transfer Piracy Hack Store Domain to Nintendo

          A federal court in Seattle has clarified that all third party intermediaries must cut their ties to a group of Nintendo 'piracy hack' stores. The order was prompted by GoDaddy's refusal to transfer the domain to Nintendo. While the new order applies to any “variant or successor” of the stores, it's not clearly defined what this actually means.

        • Hollywood’s Obituary, the Sequel. Now Streaming.

          Without appearing on big screens, are movies even movies? Wrestling with that question alone has pushed Hollywood into a full-blown identity crisis. But the film industry is simultaneously dealing with other challenges. Outrage over the killing of George Floyd by a police officer has forced the movie capital to confront its contribution to racism and inequity. Coronavirus-forced production shutdowns have idled tens of thousands of entertainment workers. The two biggest talent agencies, Creative Artists and William Morris Endeavor, have been hobbled by the shutdown, resulting in a diaspora of agents, some of whom are starting competing firms, a once-unthinkable realignment.

        • Sunday Surprises [Ed: Magdaleen Jooste advocating maximalists' think tanks]

          Fashion Law London is hosting an online event on “Fashion Renaissance: A Unique Year in Review” to reflect on recent changes, detect trends, and anticipate what may lie ahead for the fashion industries. This event takes place on 10 December 2020. IPKat readers will enjoy a discounted ticket for the event.

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