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Links 25/12/2020: EasyOS Buster 2.5.5, Sabayon Rebranding as MocaccinoOS

  • GNU/Linux

    • Server

      • 8 Reasons Linux is the Most Used OS for Web Hosting

        In the end, Linux isn’t the most popular OS for web hosting just because their mascot is adorable (though he undoubtedly is). Linux’s open-source operating system allows for flexibility, customization, and security that other operating systems just don’t compare.

        Not to mention it’s less expensive, compatible, and gradually becoming the preferred option (okay, I mentioned it).

        If you’re debating on whether to try it out, I say, “go for it!” As we’ve established, it’s free, so the only thing it will cost you is time. Plus, the reward is well worth it. Just ask Tux.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

    • Kernel Space

      • Linux Kernel 5.9 Reached End of Life. Here’s What You Should Do Now!

        Linux Kernel version 5.9, which was released around mid-October, has reached its end of life. This means that it won’t get security and maintenance updates anymore.

        You shouldn’t be surprised or get panicked about it. Kernel 5.9 was a regular kernel release and like most regular kernel release it had a lifespan of 10-12 weeks.

        Kernel 5.9 got its last update in the form of 5.9.16 and its maintainer, Greg KH, suggested users of the 5.9 kernel series to upgrade to kernel 5.10 LTS.

      • Graphics Stack

        • Mike Blumenkrantz: Rebase Me Out Of Here

          For real though, I’ve spent literal hours over the past week just rebasing stuff and managing conflicts. And then rebasing again after diffing against a reference commit when I inevitably discover that I fucked up the merge somehow.

          But now the rebasing is done for a few minutes while I run more unit tests, so it’s finally time to blog.

          It’s been a busy week. Nothing I’ve done has been very interesting. Lots of stabilizing and refactoring.

          The blogging must continue, however, so here goes.


          Some profiling was done recently by bleeding edge tester Witold Baryluk, and it turns out that zink is using slightly less GPU memory than some native drivers, though it’s also using slightly more than some other native drivers...


          It also means that any time actual QBOs are used (which is all the time for competent apps), I’ll eventually have the ability to asynchronously post the result data from a query onto a user buffer without triggering a stall.

          Functionally, this isn’t a super complex maneuver: I’ve already got a utility function that performs a vkCmdCopyQueryPoolResults for regular QBO handling, so repurposing this to be called any time a query was ended, combined with modifying the parsing function to first map the internal buffer, was sufficient.

    • Applications

      • Linux Release Roundup #20.52: Xfce 4.16, Kdenlive 20.12, and More New Releases

        In the Linux Release Roundup series, we summarize the new application and distribution versions release in the last few days. This keeps you informed with the latest developments in the Linux world.

      • [Older] 6 Best Note-Taking Apps for Linux

        In 1993, only 693 websites existed on the Internet while in ’99, only 23 blogs existed on our dear old friend. In 2006, that number jumped to having over 50 million websites on the Internet. Today, we have over one billion websites on the Internet. We’re no longer swimming in options, we’re drowning in them.

        How, then, do we choose the best tools for our productivity, when there are so many options to choose from? It’s like being trapped in the candy store of life! Today, I’ll be taking you through a list of the best note-taking apps for Linux in 2020.

      • [Older] 6 Best Office Suites for Linux in 2020

        Whether you want to admit it or not, Microsoft has been known to have the title “King of Software” for a reason. Their office suite, Office 365 (and its previous iterations) has been (and continues to be) used in many work environments, educational institutions, personal development cases, research facilities, and more.

        Just because something is popular, though, it doesn’t mean that there aren’t other, just as effective alternatives. This especially holds true for Linux users, since Office 365 isn’t available on the platform. Here are the 6 best office suites for Linux in 2020 that you can use now (for free).

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • Watching Netflix on Ubuntu

        A few years ago, it was challenging to watch Netflix on Linux because users were required to install extra libraries and switch users in the browser. Now, Netflix is supported on Linux, and it doesn’t require additional setup for watching Netflix on Linux.

        Netflix offers users to watch their favorite tv shows, movies, and documentaries anytime from any device like smartphones, computers, and laptops. Now, Ubuntu users can also watch Netflix on their system due to the easy accessibility on Linux. There is a specific way to install Netflix and if you wish to watch on an Ubuntu device. Read on to knowhow to watch Netflix on Ubuntu, we have managed to provide complete details.

      • How to Install XnView MP on Ubuntu 20.04 and Linux Mint 20 – Linux Hint

        XnView MP is a modern and versatile media browser, image viewer, image manager, and photo resizer. It is supported by a no. of platforms and is in access if you are using any of the popular operating systems. It has the privilege to support 500+ formats. As it’s one of the easiest to use, stable and comprehensive photo editor; therefore, it is used by many graphic designers across the globe.

      • How to Find Text in Files in Linux – Linux Hint

        For a system administrator, working with text files is a common phenomenon. Maybe need to find a specific section from piles of log files for troubleshooting something? Or, need to find the document that contains essential information quickly?

        In the case of Linux, there are numerous methods to find texts in files. It’s possible using both built-in tools and 3rd-party apps. Check out how to find texts in files in Linux.

        Finding text in files

        Depending on the number of files you have to perform a search on, there are two ways to perform the text search: automated or manual. If you have to work with a couple of text files, the manual search is more suitable. However, if there are hundreds of text files, then the automated search is the most efficient.

        For automated search, we’ll be using grep. Grep comes pre-installed on any Linux distro. As for manual search, any modern text editor will do the job.

      • Installing Dash to Dock on Ubuntu 20.10 – GNOME Shell Extension for Enhanced Dock – Linux Hint

        Personalization of setting in Linux distributions is one of the highlighted features. There are tons of themes, icons, cursors, and extensions to customize the desktop appearance. Dash to Dock is one of them.

        Dash to Dock is an extension for the GNOME 3 environment that allows adjusting various settings related to the dock. It modifies the default Ubuntu dock to macOS styled dock that ultimately helps to launch and switching applications quickly and conveniently.

      • How to Install ZFS File System on Oracle Linux 8 – Linux Hint

        The Z File System is an integrated file system intended to solve all of the preceding file system architecture’s big issues. It is initially created by Sun MicroSystems. ZFS is a stable, portable file-system with capabilities that are not present in most commonly available file systems nowadays. The ZFS is stable, very much easy to maintain, and flexible. Today, in this article, we will discuss and look at the methods to install ZFS File System on Oracle Linux 8.

      • Netstat : Master it with these 6 steps - The Linux Juggernaut

        Netstat is a command line utility that can be used to list out all the network connections on a system. It lists out all the tcp, udp socket connections and the unix socket connections. Netstat also displays various network related information such as network connections, routing tables, interface statistics, masquerade connections, multicast memberships etc.

        In this guide, we will see how to use this tool to gather information about network connections and open ports on a system.

      • npm package manager - install and use on Centos 7 - The Linux Juggernaut [Ed: Creates dependence on Microsoft (security risk)]

        Node.js is a Javascript platform for server-side programming that allows users to build network applications quickly. JavaScript is a client-side programming language, which means it’s processed within the user’s browser. With the advent of Node.js, JavaScript can also be used as a server-side language.

        By leveraging Javascript on both the front-end and the back-end, development can be more consistent and more feature rich. The name npm is often referred to as an acronym for node package manager though it isn’t official. The npm tool allows users to connect to an online repository containing all the Node.js programs, plugins, modules etc to facilitate easy installation of different programs.

        In this article, we will explain how to install and use npm, a Node.js package management system, to manage Node.js packages on your system. We’ll be using a centos 7 system for the purpose of this demonstration.

      • Understanding namespaces and cgroups in Linux - The Linux Juggernaut

        Namespaces and cgroups are the building blocks on which the foundation of containers has been laid. In this post, we will explore what are namespaces and cgroups along with brief descriptions of their various types.

      • How To Install & Set Up Manjaro Linux 20 (Screenshots + Video)

        Manjaro was the first Linux distribution I was introduced to when I first started using Linux over nine years ago. At the time, it was not only my favorite distro but one of the most stable distributions.

      • [Older] How To Install & Set Up VirtualBox on Linux

        Virtualization is a powerful tool. It’s kind of like the psychological aspect of visualization, but on a completely higher level. You’re able to immerse yourself in a world that’s not actually there.

      • [Older] How To Install Ubuntu 20.04 (Video + Screenshots)

        If you’re making the transition from Mac or Windows over to Linux, the method of flashing Ubuntu to your USB and installing Linux onto your computer can make or break your entire experience. Today, I’m going to go through the steps so that you can successfully install Ubuntu on your PC.

      • How To Install IntelliJ IDEA on CentOS 8 - idroot

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install IntelliJ IDEA on CentOS 8. For those of you who didn’t know, IntelliJ Idea is a java Integrated development environment (IDE) for developing computer software. It is developed by JetBrains and released under Apache License in January 2001. IntelliJ IDEA also supports major build automation tools such as Maven, Ant, and Gradle, version controls systems such as Git and SVN. It has a built-in terminal, database tools, code completion, inline debugger. Also, it supports detecting duplicates, connecting Docker containers and application servers such as Tomcat, JBoss, etc.

        This article assumes you have at least basic knowledge of Linux, know how to use the shell, and most importantly, you host your site on your own VPS. The installation is quite simple and assumes you are running in the root account, if not you may need to add ‘sudo‘ to the commands to get root privileges. I will show you through the step by step installation of IntelliJ IDEA JetBrains on CentOS 8.

      • How to install Sonic Robo Blast 2 Kart on Ubuntu 20.04 - YouTube

        Sometimes Docker (its Snap version rather, .i.e. docker-snap ) has some problems when trying to create volumes that are mounted on a directory that doesnot belong to the home directory of the user.

      • How to fix Docker error mkdir [folder]: read-only file system

        In this video, we are looking at how to install Sonic Robo Blast 2 Kart on Ubuntu 20.04.

      • How to install Vroid Studio on a Chromebook

        Today we are looking at how to install Vroid Studio on a Chromebook. Please follow the video/audio guide as a tutorial where we explain the process step by step and use the commands below.

        If you have any questions, please contact us via a YouTube comment and we would be happy to assist you!

      • Install darktable 3.4.0 in Ubuntu / openSUSE / Fedora

        In this tutorial i will show you how to install darktable 3.4.0 in Ubuntu 20.10 LTS, 20.04 LTS , openSUSE and Fedora 33

        darktable is an open source photography workflow application and non-destructive raw developer.

        darktable team released a new version 3.4.0 with new features, bugfixes and users are recommened to ugrade to latest version 3.4.0 form 3.2.1

      • Install Cache-Enhanced Nextcloud Cloud Storage on the Ubuntu Linux Server – The New Stack

        At a time when more and more people and businesses are having to shift the way they work, the on-premises collaboration-friendly Nextcloud “cloud” storage service provides an easy to use, reliable, and extensible (with hundreds of available apps to install) option. Think of it as a Google Drive or Dropbox shared file drive on your (virtual) Linux computer, but built with open source. And with every new iteration, the developers add new features and refine what’s already there.

        The latest release of Nextcloud, 20, includes some important changes, two of which are the new Dashboard — for a quick overview of what’s happening on your Nextcloud instance — and Talk integrations, so you can bridge your local chat tool with services like IRC, Slack, MS Teams, and more.

      • Run SQL queries on Data files with TrdSQL

        Trdsql is a command-line python application that execute SQL queries on flat data files like CSV, TSV, LTSV, TBLN and JSON files. It also allows exporting the outputs in several formats.

        The application is written in Go language which known for speed and performance.

        The reason why did we choose to write about trdSQL is that we used it in some tasks. It is proven to be a useful and reliable tool.

        The trdsql supports both MySQL and PostgreSQL queries. It also can execute SQL queries from .sql files.

      • GNU Linux – howto create mac partition hfs+ with gparted greyed out option
    • Games

      • Sony Releases Official Linux Driver to Support DualSense Controllers

        The “hid-sony” driver has been available on Linux for a while. According to Phoronix, Sony has released a new “hid-playstation” driver today to include support for DualSense controllers, as well as other PlayStation hardware.


        The driver initially has 1,400 lines of code. Amongst this, the kernel aims to move some of the existing support for Sony hardware to the new driver. There will be unit test coverage as older hardware is moved across. The driver is currently being reviewed so isn’t available for general download. Those who want to try it out, though, can try out any of the 13 patches that currently exist.

      • Sony Publishes An Official Linux Driver For PS5 DualSense Controllers

        Sony has published a new "hid-playstation" Linux kernel driver for bringing up the PlayStation 5 DualSense controller and will also be used for supporting other PlayStation hardware on Linux.

      • Sony Publishes An Official Linux Driver For PlayStation 5 DualSense Controllers - Phoronix

        Well here is a pleasant Christmas surprise... Sony has published a new "hid-playstation" Linux kernel driver for bringing up the PlayStation 5 DualSense controller and will also be used for supporting other PlayStation hardware on Linux.

        This new Linux kernel driver supports the PlayStation 5 "DualSense" game controller both in USB and Bluetooth modes. All key functionality along with LEDs, motion sensors, touchpad, battery, lightbar, and rumble are all supported by this official Sony Linux driver.

      • Web Editor beta, AudioWorklet, GDNative and more!

        Howdy Godotters! The year is almost over and it's about time we give you some news about the Web Editor and the HTML5 export.

        It's been a very fruitful year for Godot on the Web since the announcement of the first web editor prototype. As expected in the rationale of the original post, this has produced a lot of improvements to the HTML5 export in general, including support for threads, file drag and drop, LTO for smaller and faster builds, low-processor mode with optional lower framerate, and better control over audio output latency and mix rate. See the second and third reports for more details.

        With this new report, as you may know if you checked out the last Godot Live Q&A, we're happy to announce that we have added optional GDNative support in HTML5 exports, that the optional Thread support now comes with an improved audio driver using the AudioWorklet API, and that the Web Editor has reached the beta stage.

      • [Older] Don’t Miss These Epic Deals & Free Games for Linux This Holiday Season

        Christmas holidays are around the corner. Grab some free games to play on your Linux desktop this holiday season. And yes, there are holiday sales going on as well.

      • FreeType Merges New "SDF" Renderer For High Quality Text Rendering In Games, Etc - Phoronix

        As a Christmas gift to font enthusiasts, the FreeType font rasterization engine today merged its SDF renderer.

        The new SDF code was merged today across the span of many commits. The FreeType Signed Distance Field (SDF) rasterizer generates SDF directly from outlines unlike the existing "BSDF" rasterizer in FreeType that first goes through bitmaps.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • After 1.5 Years of Development, Xfce 4.16 is Here With GTK3 Support and Other Major Changes

        Xfce is one of the best desktop environments for Linux distributions. Especially, for systems with older hardware configuration.

        Xfce 4.14 was definitely impressive and now exactly after 1 year and 4 months of work, Xfce 4.16 is here!

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • Kdenlive 20.12 Is Here With Exciting New Features And Major Changes

          The free and open-source video editor — Kdenlive has released a new version as the countdown starts for 2021. Overall, it is adding new features to its already advanced list of tools.

          The team behind Kdenlive have recently released the new version – Kdenlive version 20.12 introducing some exciting new features as well as the usual bug fixes.

        • Ksnip: A Cross-platform, Open-Source Screenshot Tool Brings Out New Major Release

          Taking screenshots in Linux is a pretty straightforward process and comes in handy for a variety of tasks. There are plenty of screenshot taking tools available for Linux users.

          Powerful screenshot utilities like Flameshot come with many features that help users to capture the screen. On the other hand, Ksnip is a screenshot utility that has been around for some time now, which received a major update recently.

        • Adriaan de Groot: Improving developer setup

          One of the important parts of getting-started in an project is setting up a developer environment (if you want to do code contributions; other kinds of contributions need different setup). Calamares has a thing called which mangles the system it is run in (recommended only in VMs or live-ISO) while the KDE project has a wiki page on getting involved as a developer and a build tool that can do initial system setup and help with builds.

          As a most-of-the-time-FreeBSD developer, I’m somewhat spoiled for a developer environment: a compiler (clang) is included, and installing package something also installs all the development tooling required for something. In other words: chasing development dependencies is pretty much trivial.

          Many Linux distro’s support split dev-packages, and the names of those vary per-distro. My own script handles a half-dozen common variants. The kdesrc-build tool from KDE does something similar, with known-dependencies lists for Alpine, Arch, Debian, Fedora, Gentoo, Mageia and openSUSE (presumably “and derivatives”). So I decided to put this to the test by turning my recently-installed Plasma Mobile on Desktop into a development VM. Should be simple: the base is KDE neon User Edition, which is (kind of like) Ubuntu, which is (kind of like) Debian, so it ought to be straightforward.

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • GTK 4.0 has Officially Released with Major Improvements!

          The GTK team has announced a major new version of their toolkit, GTK 4.0. This is a result of their 4 years of continuous hard work. Since the 3.89.1 release in November 2016, they had added 18k commits and made 20 development releases.

    • Distributions

      • The 5 Most Beautiful Linux Distros Out Of The Box

        Do you like a beautiful desktop? Yes? Me, too! You know what’s great about Linux? You can change its look and feel the way you want it. But in order to do that, you need the skills to do that, and it’s time-consuming. So you might think, yeah! Let’s use macOS instead! It’s beautiful out of the box. And that’s totally true! But you know what? There’s another way, a way to use Linux that looks totally awesome right out of the box. I’ll show you the 5 most beautiful Linux distros out of the box. Here we go!

      • Best Linux Distros for Windows Users
      • Deepin Linux vs. Elementary OS

        One of the benefits of being a Linux user is that you’re essentially swimming in options of many distros to choose from. In my many years of being a Linux user, I have tried many distros, including Cylon Linux, Ubuntu, Manjaro, Deepin, Zorin OS, Feren OS, CloudReady, Hanna Montanna Linux (lol), KDE neon, Fedora, Peppermint, Bodhi, and more.

      • Opinions or Options: An Honest View of Windows versus Linux

        A war is going on in my house. Yes, that’s right. I call it “The War of O.S.’s.” My wife prefers Mac. My son is clan Microsoft. And I come from the foreign land of Linux. However, in recent years, we have called a truce. I don’t bring up why I think Linux is better and they don’t try to sell me on why it’s not. As long as we keep to the treaty, there is peace at the Catron household. Well, maybe it’s not quite that bad.

        We are, however, people who have strong opinions, preferences, and tastes. That’s pretty much universal. Most people have a favorite sport, favorite team, favorite TV show, or favorite topping on their pizza. Not everyone drives a Ford, Dodge, or Chevy. Nor do we all have the same choice in a restaurant or shop in the same store. Everyone has their own set of likes and dislikes, some more popular than others. And that’s okay. In fact, I believe that is a very good thing.

        How many of us would enjoy going to a restaurant that only served one thing on the menu? Sometimes it’s good; sometimes it’s not, but there are no other choices. Would we be okay with that? Would we come back? I suppose it depends on if we like what they are serving, but for the most part, we expect businesses to give us options that way we have the freedom to choose.

      • 3 Best Linux Distros For Students: Options You Can Try Right Now!

        With some regularity, I read Reddit (and other forum) threads that ask questions like “As a student, what’s the best laptop for me?” It’s all too common nowadays since there’s a big battle going on for the domination of the desktop/laptop operating system. We know about the 3 Big Brothers: Google, Apple, and Microsoft. There’s one that’s not talked about often enough, though, and that’s the Linux space. It offers more power to the user than the 3 Big Brothers combined.

      • 5 Best Linux Distros for Beginners

        How can we not start with Ubuntu? This is one of the most famous distros out there. After the login, we throw into a friendly desktop, similar or not to Windows style. The force of Linux is the chance to have only the thing that we like (all pieces are in fact interchangeable). Following this line, Ubuntu gives us many desktop environments (called also flavor) to pick for all kinds of PC performance or tastes. The difference between those is about the consumption and the look and feel (so you are not limited to a single desktop environment and its features). Its default flavor is Gnome, but as just mentioned you can choose another flavor by installing one of Ubuntu’s derivate.

      • Puppy/EasyOS

        • EasyOS Buster 2.5.5

          The plan for the near future will be another release of Easy Dunfell, with 5.10.x kernel, and after that I want to do some more work on container security.

        • Kernel 5.10.2 compiled in EasyOS Dunfell

          In EasyOS Dunfell-series, I have compiled the 5.10.2 kernel, with the intention it will be used for the next release.

        • EasyOS Dunfell 0.101 released

          The Dunfell-series is built with packages compiled from source, using a fork of OpenEmbedded. It has the 5.10.2 kernel, so will be an opportunity work with that kernel -- eventually, it is expected the mainstream Debian-DEB-based Buster-series will migrate to the Bullseye-series, and likely use the 5.10.x kernel. Note the version number, 0.101, being under 1.0. I have done this so that newcomers won't get confused about which one to download. Currently, the Buster-series is recommended for casual users, mostly because of the convenience of the large DEB repository. However, might promote the Dunfell-series to version-parity with the Buster-series one day, we will see how it goes.

      • BSD

      • Gentoo Family

        • In a Major Shift, Gentoo-based Sabayon Linux is Rebranding Itself to MocaccinoOS With a Focus on Containerization

          First of all, many of you might not be familiar with Sabayon Linux and most have probably never heard of it at all. Sabayon Linux is a Gentoo-based Linux distro from Italy. Gentoo is a very different distro because all of the software you install (and all of the updates) are compiled from source on your system. There are no precompiled packages.

          Unlike its source, Sabayon is designed to be more user friendly and have a more of an “out of the box” philosophy. It has pre-compiled applications available for quick and easy installation. Sabayon also has its software repo and package manager (Entropy). (So, they are the Manjaro of the Gentoo world.)

      • SUSE/OpenSUSE

        • Rancher Deal May Make SUSE a Kubernetes and Hybrid Cloud Powerhouse | Data Center Knowledge

          After years of struggling to catch up, the German open source software firm buys what might be the ticket to finally turning around.

        • Result of the Modernizing AutoYaST initiative

          In April, we announced the Modernizing AutoYaST initiative. The idea was not to rewrite AutoYaST but just introduce a few new features, remove some limitations and improve the code quality.

          Although they were not set in stone, we had some ideas about what changes we wanted to introduce. However, as soon as we started to work, it became clear that we needed to adapt our roadmap. So if you compare our initial announcement with the result, you can spot many differences.

          This article describes the most relevant changes. If you want to try any of these features, they are already available in openSUSE Tumbleweed.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • Fedora Is Looking For Your Artwork, Photos, Recipes + Poetry

          For those looking to get involved with the Fedora project in manner besides the likes of coding and documentation, a Fedora Zine is being established and are looking for creative submissions.

          The "Fedora Zine" is being established as part of the Outreachy 2020 winter round. The Fedora Zine is to recognize "the wide variety of work being done here at Fedora" and to provide engagement with the community. The Fedora Zine is intended to be distributed at conferences and other events, well, once the pandemic is over.


          Contributions for the initial issue are being accepted through 1 February.

        • Great News for CentOS Users! Rocky Linux is Set to Arrive in Q2 2021

          If you’ve been following the news, you might have already heard about Rocky Linux. To give you a quick summary, it’s meant to be a CentOS replacement by the original CentOS creator.

          In our previous coverage, we did not have any other information regarding the release date and relevant technical details. But, now, through an official community update on Rocky Linux forums, we have some exciting information to share.

          It looks like Rocky Linux is going to arrive soon in the second quarter (Q2) of 2021. Of course, we still do not have an exact release date but Q2, 2021 is a promising release window to target.

        • Fedora Council November 2020 meeting

          As usual, the Fedora Council held an annual strategy meeting last month. And as usual for 2020, we had to conduct it virtually. Instead of meeting somewhere in person for a few packed days, we decided to split it into several half days over a few weeks. Ben Cotton, the apparently untiring Fedora Program Manager (FPgM), already published the minutes through Zodbot. In this post, I’ll cover some of the discussion in more detail.


          Modernizing our synchronous communication platform is a bigger challenge. IRC can be daunting to newcomers, but we have a lot invested in it. Hundreds of contributors a day use Zodbot to facilitate meetings, query for information, or give “karma cookies” to other Fedorans. However,, which uses the Matrix protocol and also provides an IRC bridge. This gives us the opportunity to move more carefully to a modern protocol.


          With the Fedora 33 release, Fedora IoT was officially promoted to Edition status. Peter Robinson, the IoT Objective Lead, gave us some valuable feedback on the process. The Objectives process should add value for the people involved in the Objective, rather than just producing extra overhead. The Project should be able to provide enough resources that it ends up not being net additional work for the Objective contributors. Being on the Council is great, but it required a lot of effort from Peter and was not balanced with the resources available.

          Ben Cotton spent some of his time helping the IoT team with some of the administrative work and coordinating with other teams like Websites, Badges, and Design. Future Objectives would benefit from having someone assigned to do that. We’ve asked Ben to work on a proposal for building up a pool of contributors who can be tasked with that in the future.

          Overall, the IoT Objective was a success. There’s a full review of the outputs and outcomes in the minutes. I’m excited to see what the IoT Edition does in the coming year. Thanks to Peter everyone in the Fedora IoT Working Group, and everyone else who made this happen!

        • Fedora 33 : Install wordpress on Fedora distro.

          For those who are celebrating the winter holidays with the Linux operating system, I have created this little tutorial... First step - update and upgrade the Fedora 33 Linux distro.

        • How we’re helping our employees cope with the grief and loss of the pandemic [Ed: By Red Hat/IBM]
        • Converged, Cloudy and Cognitive: The Top Information Management Trends for 2021

          The growing presence of AI and machine learning “within traditional data environments will take on a large role in processing data and analytics at the edge,” agreed Irshad Raihan, director of cloud storage and data services at Red Hat. It has even been suggested that 75% of enter€­prise-generated data will be processed at the edge by 2025, turning this trend into a reality within only a short 5-year period. “But at this time, companies are taking their first steps in developing and/or imple€­menting AI and machine-learning capabil€­ities to harness deeper and real-time col€­laboration and processing across teams,” Raihan said.

        • Use Kebechet machine learning to perform source code operations

          One of the first tools we developed to help us with Project Thoth was Kebechet, which we named for the goddess of freshness and purification. As we separated our software into more and more repositories (each of our Python modules is in its own repository on GitHub), we needed help with releasing new versions and keeping all dependent modules up-to-date. In a team of two and with more than 35 repositories, our process was a major time-burner.

          Kebechet is a bit of core infrastructure code that can be extended using managers. The most important Kebechet managers are version manager and update manager. The selection of which Kebechet manager to run is configured on a per-repository basis. By using cyborg team members, we wanted interaction with the bot to feel like a human developer. GitHub Issues tells it what to do, and—if something goes wrong—these changes are guarded by pull requests. Continuous testing and code review by other team members are handled the same as code additions from humans.

          In sum, Kebechet enables robotic process automation as applied to software development. It allows humans to eliminate repetitive, boring, and error-prone tasks, by doing what developers do best. It writes a piece of code to get the job done.

        • 2020 Time Zone Database (tzdata) changes

          Daylight saving time transitions, a zone name change, and the removal of some obsolete files: These are some of the changes that occurred in the Time Zone Database (tzdata) package that provides Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) and applications with time zone information.

          The GNU C Library (glibc) makes use of the tzdata package in order to make APIs such as strftime() work correctly, while applications such as /usr/bin/date make use of this information to print the local date. The tzdata package contains the data files documenting both current and historic transitions for various time zones around the world. This data represents changes required by local government bodies or by time zone boundary changes, as well as changes to UTC offsets and daylight saving time (DST).

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Linux Mint 20.1 “Ulyssa” Beta Is Now Available To Download

          Linux Mint 20.1 is a point release after Linux Mint 20. It is based on Ubuntu 20.04.1 LTS and comes loaded with Linux Kernel 5.4

          Similar to its previous release, Linux Mint 20.1 will be supported until 2025. And, you will find three different beta builds for Xfce desktop, MATE, and Cinnamon.

          Here, let me quickly highlight what’s new before you start downloading it.

        • This Nintendo Switch clone runs Ubuntu, and is half the cost [Ed: Maybe plagiarism]

          There is a potential new participant in the Handheld Video Game Console gadget due to a brand new Hardkernel launch.

          The South Korean {hardware} supplier, known for its Odroid collection of single board computer systems (SBCs), has shared information about its latest flagship portable gadget powered by Ubuntu.

          The Odroid-Go Super (OGS) is the third iteration of the favorite collection of Odroid-Go portable gadgets that features a larger screen, a much larger battery, and improved Wi-Fi capabilities compared to its predecessors. Designed primarily as a portable game console, the gadget runs Ubuntu 20.04 to emulate retro game consoles from Sony, Nintendo, Atari, Sega, and NEC.

          Odroid-Go devices have historically looked like Nintendo handhelds, and the OGS looks a lot like a Nintendo Switch Lite. The only major difference is that at $ 80, the OGS costs less than half the price of the Nintendo device it looks like.

    • Devices/Embedded

      • [Librem 5] App Showcase: Lollypop

        Within the PureOS Store, you can easily install Lollypop, a desktop music player that has been adapted for use on the go. Simply put your music in ~/Music and start the app.

      • Open Hardware/Modding

        • Actinius launches nRF9160 SoM and XBee module with NB-IoT, LTE Cat-M, and GPS

          Last year, Actinius launched Icarus IoT Board equipped with nRF9160 SiP providing GPS & NB-IoT connectivity in Adafruit Feather form factor. The company is now back with more compact Nordic Semi nRF9160 hardware, namely the tiny 28×18.5mm Icarus SoM with built-in eSIM, as well as Icarus Bee XBee module that incorporates Icarus SoM plus a nano-SIM slot, as well as an RGB LED and a user button.

        • IAR Adds Continuous Integration Support for RISC-V-Based Linux Automation Workflows

          IAR Systems has updated its RISC-V build tools to support automated application build and test processes on Linux-based frameworks, enabling streamlined workflows for Continuous Integration (CI) while maintaining code quality control via the C-STAT static code analysis tool.

          The IAR build tools for Linux provided with the latest RISC-V update include the IAR C/C++ Compiler, IAR Assembler, Linker and library tools, C-STAT, and runtime libraries. The package can be integrated into systems like CMake or Ninja, or CI engines like Jenkins and Bamboo using the IARBuild command line utility.

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Web Browsers

        • [Older] The 4 Best Linux Browsers I’ve Used in 2020

          Do web browsers make a computer more useful or does a computer make a web browser more useful? In modern-day computing, web browsers have essentially become an all-in-one tool. Google’s Chrome OS is legitimate proof of this statement. We are now able to run word processors, excel sheets, have video meetings, and more, directly from a browser of our choice. Even things like online video editing or Photoshop alternatives (although simpler, for now) are starting to become a thing and garner the attention of developers and designers. Well, we’ll just have to wait and see where we stand just a year or two from now. Anyway, in light of this, I thought it would be great to discuss the best web browsers for Linux you can try right now. Happy reading!

      • Education

        • 4 ways open source transformed education in 2020

          The COVID-19 pandemic required a paradigm change in education in 2020, as face-to-face interaction between teachers and students was largely replaced by remote learning beginning in the spring. writers helped teachers, students, and families around the world rise to the challenge with examples of open software tools fueling innovation in teaching and learning.

          To document the transition to online instructions and help people adapt to it, our writers offer information about content-creation tools and lesson ideas that will keep teachers and students learning well into 2021 and beyond.

      • FSF

        • Freedom, memories, and campaigning for free software

          This installment in our series is focused on the history of the FSF's campaigns team. As with our article on the tech team, it is not meant to be a comprehensive history, but is instead a collection of some past members of the team's favorite moments, memories, and actions from our history of spreading the message of free software.


          Using some of the experience gained from the Defective by Design protests, future members of the campaigns team were able to diversify their tactics to address other issues in the software freedom movement. Former campaigns manager Zak Rogoff wrote to us to say that one of his favorite moments from the time he spent on the campaigns team was protesting a new version of Windows outside a Microsoft store in Boston. The team wasn't able to stay very long before being ushered out by security, but Zak was able to don the office's famous GNU mascot head and try out some dance moves. Apparently, an attempt at breakdancing was one of them, something that would have been difficult even without an enormous plush wildebeest balanced on your head. We'll never know whether it was Zak's dance attempt or the protest that actually caused someone to call security.

          Unfortunately, this article can't cover every project the FSF campaigns team works on, or even all of the issues we address in our day-to-day work. We also haven't covered some of the important advocacy work that's been done by other FSF staff, such as the mini-summit on women in free software in 2009. But what we can do is invite you to join us in our mission to bring free software and #UserFreedom to computer users around the world. Before joining the team myself, reading about the work and protests from afar never failed to be inspiring, and it helped me take my first steps into organizing for software freedom.

          Thank you to all of the past and present members of the FSF campaigns team, wherever you may be, and thanks especially to all of the FSF's many volunteers, protesters, activists, and supporters who have helped us reach this important milestone. It's your dedication and support that ensures we're able to focus on creating a world in which all software respects its users' freedom and dignity.

        • GNU Projects

      • Programming/Development

        • Daniel Stenberg: The curl year 2020

          As we’re approaching the end of the year, I just want to sum up the curl year with a few words.

          2020 has been another glorious year in the curl project. We’ve seen a series of accomplishments and introductions of new things during this the year of the plague.


          139 authors wrote commits that were merged (so far).

          We did nine curl releases, out of which two unfortunately were quicker “panic releases” that patched up problems in the previous release.

        • How Do I Merge One Branch to Another with Git?

          One of the most powerful Git’s features is the branch creation and merge operation. Git allows users to create a new branch and merge them into the development code. This feature improves the workflow of the development process for various projects by encouraging more focused, smaller, and granular commits.

          In most of the legacy version control systems such as CVS in which the difficulty of merging restricted it to advance users. The modern centralized version control system like subversion requires commits to be made on the central repository. When talking about Git, we have to create a new branch code to add a new feature or bug fix.

          In this article, we will show you how to create a new branch, add commits to new features, and merge master with a new branch.

        • Show Git Tree in Terminal

          The git log command is a useful command that allows you to look at Git commits history. However, this text-based log may not be preferred by most users, since the output can be very difficult and complex to visualize and interpret. A more visually appealing way to present this log is in the form of a Git tree. This article describes several methods that you can use to create a Git tree in the terminal in Ubuntu 20.04.

        • How to use heredoc as a text editor |

          There’s a somewhat obscure feature in Linux and Unix shells that allows you to open a sort of do-while loop for the cat command. It’s called the heredoc, and it enables you to have, more or less, a text editor no matter what shell you’re using.

        • Wasmer 1.0 RC1 Released For Running WebAssembly On The Desktop Or Anywhere

          It's looking like Wasmer 1.0 will be released early in the new year as the open-source WebAssembly run-time for desktops or to run WASM code anywhere as a "universal runtime" in contexts outside of the web browser.


          This Rust-based WebAssembly implementation has seen a few low-level changes and a couple fixes to comprise the 1.0-RC1 release. This should be the Wasmer 1.0.0 API barring any last minute issues coming up.

        • control-archive 1.9.0

          This release switches to gpg1 in order to support older keys and produces better diagnostics when the X-PGP-Sig header is invalid because it's missing the useless version field. It also includes various hierarchy metadata updates, including adding rocksolid.*, removing dictator.* at its maintainer's request, and updating the fr.* key.

        • Intel Preparing Linear Address Masking Support (LAM)

          A few days ago there was a glibc commit mentioning Intel "LAM" and now the updated Intel documentation sheds more light on this forthcoming processor feature.

          Intel updated their programming reference manual this week with new features coming to future Intel CPUs. This includes outlining Intel LAM to shed more light on it. The December 2020 update also includes updates to the Enhanced Hardware Feedback Interface as well as a chapter on new error codes for Sapphire Rapids processors. The Enhanced Hardware Feedback Interface functionality was talked about a few months ago.

        • 3 critical [buzzword] concepts we explored in 2020

          Looking back through's articles about [buzzword] in 2020, there was a bit of something for everyone—from people starting the [buzzword] journey to seasoned [buzzword] veterans. The articles focused on testing, software methodologies, and [buzzword]' most important part: the people. Here are the top 10 [buzzword] articles of 2020.

        • Perl/Raku

          • Day 25: Reminiscence, refinement, revolution – Raku Advent Calendar

            Christmas day, 2015. I woke up in the south of Ukraine – in the very same apartment where I’d lived for a month back in the spring, hacking on the NFG representation of Unicode. NFG was just one of the missing pieces that had to fall into place during 2015 in order for that Christmas – finally – to bring the first official release of the language we now know as Raku.

            I sipped a coffee and looked out onto a snowy courtyard. That, at least, was reassuring. Snow around Christmas was relatively common in my childhood. It ceased to be the year after I bought a sledge. I opened my laptop, and took a look at the #perl6-dev IRC channel. Release time would be soon – and I would largely be a spectator.

            My contributions to the Rakudo compiler had started eight years prior. I had no idea what I was getting myself into, although if I had known, I’m pretty sure I’d still have done it. The technical challenges were, of course, fascinating for somebody who had developed a keen interesting in languages, compilers, and runtimes while at university. Larry designs languages with an eye on what’s possible, not on what’s easy, for the implementer. I learned, and continue to learn, a tremendous amount by virtue of working on Raku implementation. Aside from that, the regular speaking at workshops and conferences opened the door to spending some years as a teacher of software development and architecture, and after that left me with a wealth of knowledge to draw on as I moved on to focus on consultancy on developer tooling. Most precious of all, however, are the friendships forged with some of those sharing the Raku journey – which I can only imagine lasting a lifetime.

        • Python

          • 35 Data Science Python Libraries for Scientists

            Python is an interpreted general-purpose programming language. It is used for web development, desktop application development, system scripting and automation.

            It is a high-level language created in the early 1991 by Guido van Rossum and maintained by Python Software Foundation.

            The language is easy to learn which makes it suitable for beginners and students. We recommended it for teens and children in this article. It also works on different platforms and operating systems like Windows, Linux, macOS and Raspberry Pi.

            Python can be treated in a functional, object-oriented or procedural way.

            The current and most active Python version is Python 3. However, some applications and frameworks are still using Python 2.7.

        • Go

          • How to Create a Simple Application in Go Language

            This article will cover a tutorial on creating a simple “Hello World” application in Go programming language. All code samples and commands in this article are tested with the Go language version 1.14.7 on Ubuntu 20.10.

        • Rust

  • Leftovers

    • Yuletide Lockdowns and Cancelling Christmas

      As unsustainable as it might be, the UK was treated to another round of vigorous U-turning ahead of Christmas by a leader who radiates buffoonery and steady incompetence. On December 16, a decision was taken to ease COVID-19 restrictions over the festive period, a view distinctly at odds with a good number in the scientific establishment.

      In November, submissions by the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage) to the government warned that mixing over the Christmas period could well lead to greater spread in the event restrictions were eased. According to a paper by the operational subgroup of the Scientific Pandemic Influenza Group on Modelling (SPI-M-O), a relaxation “over the festive period will result in increased transmission and increased prevalence, potentially by a large amount.” The group also warned that, “SARS-Cov-19 has demonstrated high secondary attack rates in households (with estimates of up to 50% in one household infected from one infected member).”

    • Modern Hollywood Discovers Its Jazz ‘Soul’

      The very first seconds of Pixar’s new feature Soul, the cue card of the Disney castle, offers some of the best jazz ever heard in a Hollywood movie. The famous theme “When You Wish Upon a Star,” is blared out in a raggedy fashion by a brass band, replete with noisy trumpets, squalling saxophones, and tailgate trombone. What? Is this a long-lost Charles Mingus tape? Or somebody equally hip?

    • Science

    • Education

      • Biden picks equity-focused Hispanic as US education secretary

        In a statement, Mr Biden emphasised Dr Cardona’s two-decade record of pursuing diversity and equal opportunity in school education, and suggested that he would apply that same commitment at the post-secondary level.

        The selection fulfils Mr Biden’s promise to choose someone with classroom teaching experience, as Dr Cardona has been a teacher, school principal and assistant superintendent in his hometown of Meriden. The 45-year-old became Connecticut’s youngest principal in 2003 and the state’s principal of the year in 2012.

    • Health/Nutrition

      • Veterans Wonder: Will Biden’s VA Pick Halt Slide Toward Privatization?

        After working as a Capitol Hill staffer and Center for American Progress senior fellow, McDonough first joined the Obama Administration as a national security advisor. Later, he became the president’s second-term chief of staff.€  In that role, McDonough is credited with being “deeply involved” in the White House shake-up of the VA leadership after veterans’ hospital managers in Phoenix falsified data about how long patients were waiting for appointments, triggering a major political uproar. According to a colleague at the time, McDonough became “obsessed” with healthcare wait times. He helped solve that problem by rounding up Capitol Hill support for VA outsourcing€  via the Veterans’ Choice program, recently€ hailed by the€ New York Times€ as one of Obama’s “most substantial second-term legislative achievements.”

        Despite their own support for Choice six years ago, advocates for veterans are giving McDonough mixed reviews now, in the wake of their own€ organizational exclusion€ from Biden’s VA transition team. “We were expecting a veteran, maybe a post 9/11 veteran,” huffed Joe Chenelly, executive director of AMVETS. “Maybe a woman veteran. Or maybe a veteran who knows the VA exceptionally well.” Paul Rieckhoff, a co-founder of Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, finds McDonough to be “a shockingly out of touch pick. They could have selected someone who’s been a patient there or has any direct experience with that community.”€ Pam Campos-Palma, from Vets for the People, expressed€ similar alarm that “the Biden team didn’t choose someone the veteran community saw themselves in or can trust to know our struggles.”

      • For Farmers, Biden’s Ag Pick of Tom Vilsack is Deja Vu All Over Again

        While Vilsack is more than acceptable to Republicans and the centrist wing of the Democratic party, his nomination was a red flag to reformist progressives, small farm and environmental advocates. Vilsack’s nomination means stepping back to the same old same old of Obama’s ag policy that did little to promote progressive policies that would give farmers fair prices, limit corporate consolidation, rebuild rural communities, discourage overuse of pesticides and the proliferation of Confined Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs) or provide land access to women, people of color and beginning farmers

        No doubt almost anyone moving into the “big office” at USDA would be an improvement over current Ag Secretary Sonny Perdue, with his support for the continuing trend of consolidation in agriculture, his “the big get bigger and the small go out” philosophy, penchant to de-regulate agriculture, disdain for organic farming, perpetuation of racist policies within the USDA, support for factory farming and his feeling that climate science is a “joke”. Not a high bar.

      • 'Merry... Christmas': Watch Rep. Debbie Dingell Drop House Gavel in Disgust Over GOP's Covid-19 Cruelty

        "I feel like she wanted to insert a choice expletive in the middle of that."

      • Opinion | Kids Are NOT Falling Behind. They Are Surviving a Pandemic.

        The economy is what they’re really worried about.€ They want to keep it chugging along so they can continue siphoning profit off of the working class and into their pockets.€ € 

      • Yemen's Humanitarian Crisis Worsened Amid COVID
      • 'Trying to Kill Me': Black Doctor Who Died of Covid-19 Posted Harrowing Video Alleging Medical Racism

        "This is how Black people get killed, when you send them home and they don't know how to fight for themselves," said Dr. Susan Moore in a video she posted on Facebook.

      • Arsenic Contamination in US Public Water Is More Likely in Latinx Communities
      • Antivaxxers, COVID-19 vaccines, and “fetal cells”: Everything old is new again

        Somehow, some way, my ambitious plans for finishing out the week before Christmas with a catalogue of appropriate “insolence” directed at pseudoscience have come to naught, and I find myself on Christmas Eve morning with only one post this week, and even that was a repackaged post from my not-so-super-secret other blog. I suppose I could blame the COVID-19 vaccine the first dose of which I was fortunate enough to receive last Friday. A side effect inhibits blogging! I imagine that, were that actually true, it would pose a conundrum to antivaxxers who spread fear, uncertainty, and doubt about vaccines confronting the possibility that a vaccine might shut Orac up for a while. Be that as it may, if there’s one thing I’ve noticed about COVID-19 and the race to develop vaccines against SARS-CoV-2, the nasty coronavirus responsible for our current pandemic, it’s that every old antivax trope is new again, up to and including the claim that the COVID-19 vaccine will render our women infertile, as I wrote about a few days ago. This brings me to the latest, namely the blatantly obvious attempt to pander to religious fundamentalists by trying to link COVID-19 vaccines to abortion, specifically by claiming that “fetal cells” or “fetal tissue” is inextricably linked to their manufacture. Truly, in terms of antivaccine disinformation and propaganda, in the age of COVID-19 and with the vaccines rolling out, everything old is new again.

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Looking Back on the Year of 'Animal Crossing'

          Depending on who you ask, Animal Crossing: New Horizons is the unofficial video game that defined COVID-19 lockdown amid the strange and strenuous year of 2020.

          From its relaxing garden vibes to the sweet and often hilarious conversations to be had with villagers of varying personalities, to the island get-togethers and seasonal events, the game provided a sense of community and purpose during the monotony of home isolation.

          At least, it did for The Hollywood Reporter's associate editors Trilby Beresford and Sharareh Drury, who, in looking back on the year in gaming, discussed why the game — in which lifetime sales are over 22.4 million, just behind Nintendo's best-selling Switch game Mario Kart 8 Deluxe — struck a personal chord with them.

        • [Attackers] accessed Microsoft cloud customers' information through third party: report

          The newspaper’s sources said the [attackers] seemed to have accessed the materials through an unidentified corporate partner of the tech giant.

        • Suspected Russian [attackers] used Microsoft vendors to breach customers

          The suspected Russian [crackers] behind the worst U.S. cyber attack in years leveraged reseller access to Microsoft Corp services to penetrate targets that had no compromised network software from SolarWinds Corp, investigators said.

        • The widening SolarWinds debacle shows why the reckless idea of backdooring encryption must be dropped forever

          Key to the intrusion was the insertion of malicious code into the Orion network monitoring software from SolarWinds – a backdoor in software that was very widely used and trusted. Although most analysis has focused on the identity of the attackers – the general consensus seems to be that it was a Russian group, probably with the connivance of the authorities there – it’s worth looking at another aspect: the fact that a backdoor was created in widely used software, and deployed to such devastating effect.

        • SolarWinds: [Cracked] firm issues urgent security fix

          It was later revealed that the product had also been compromised by malware from a suspected second perpetrator, adding a separate backdoor.

        • SolarWinds [Crackers] 'Impacting' State, Local Governments, US Cyber Agency Says

          The [cracking] campaign, which used U.S. tech company SolarWinds as a springboard to penetrate federal government networks, was “impacting enterprise networks across federal, state, and local governments, as well as critical infrastructure entities and other private sector organizations,” the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) said in a statement posted to its website.

          The CISA said last week that U.S. government agencies, critical infrastructure entities, and private groups were among those affected but did not specifically mention state or local bodies. So far only a handful of federal government agencies have officially confirmed having been affected, including the U.S. Treasury Department, the Commerce Department, and the Department of Energy.

        • Security

          • Google Discloses Poorly-Patched, Now Unpatched, Windows 0-Day Bug

            Google's Project Zero team has made public details of an improperly patched zero-day security vulnerability in Windows print spooler API that could be leveraged by a bad actor to execute arbitrary code.

            Details of the unpatched flaw were revealed publicly after Microsoft failed to patch it within 90 days of responsible disclosure on September 24.

            Originally tracked as CVE-2020-0986, the flaw concerns an elevation of privilege exploit in the GDI Print / Print Spooler API ("splwow64.exe") that was reported to Microsoft by an anonymous user working with Trend Micro's Zero Day Initiative (ZDI) back in late December 2019.

            But with no patch in sight for about six months, ZDI ended up posting a public advisory as a zero-day on May 19 earlier this year, after which it was exploited in the wild in a campaign dubbed "Operation PowerFall" against an unnamed South Korean company.

          • Open Source Security Podcast/Josh Bressers: Episode 250 – Door 25: Why do we do the things we do? Question everything

            Josh and Kurt talk about why we do the things we do. Sometimes we have to question everything

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • ACLU sues to find out how the FBI is breaking into encrypted devices

              Whether the encryption is broken or bypassed has major security implications. If taxpayer dollars are being used to do this, the information about it should be public.

            • Digital Watchdog Says Facebook Behind 'Intentional Decrease' in Traffic to Pro-Palestinian Pages

              Sada Social Center says visits to some pages have plummeted by as much as 80%.€ 

            • ‘That Loss of Privacy Is the Monopoly€ Price’

              Janine Jackson interviewed EFF’s Mitch Stoltz about breaking up Google for the December 18, 2020, episode of CounterSpin. This is a lightly edited transcript.€ 

            • COVID-19 and Surveillance Tech: Year in Review 2020

              But heavy-handed tactics like these undercut public trust in government, precisely when trust is needed most. They also invade our privacy and chill our free speech. And all too often, surveillance technologies disparately burden people of color.

              In the United States, EFF and other digital rights advocates turned back some of the worst proposals. But they’ll be back in 2021. Until the pandemic ends, we must hold the line against ill-considered surveillance technologies.

              Contact tracing is a common public health response to contagious disease. In its traditional form, officials interview an infected person to determine who they had contact with, and then interview those people, too. Many have sought to automate this process with new technologies. But an app will not save us.

    • Defence/Aggression

      • Nostalgia, Protest and a 9/11 Everyday

        Many from the decade of the 1960s had already begun to solidify their plans toward what would morph into careerism. Over these many decades, I watched as friends disappeared into careerism. My best friend from college, a protest leader, described the person he married at the end of the era of the 1960s and early 1970s this way: “She had a great career!” Many of those who protested during that great epic of change changed their values as easily as they changed their clothes. How different were they than the kids Abbie spotted on the way to Central Park?€  No military draft; no protest. This began the era of the self and self-exploration devoid of politics and commitment. When my friend from college turned up on a list of people who donated to Hillary Clinton’s campaign for president in€ 2016, well, readers can easily make their own valid conclusions. From antiwar protest to support of a warmonger!

        They, the newly minted careerists, would change their metaphorical garments of protest into the accepted expectations of the system and gain a professional education and go on with life. Today, when I attempt to communicate with some of those people from that decade of significant change, it is as if I’m trying to relate to an alien species. They bought the whole plan hook, line, sinker and middle-class and upper middle-class comfort and so-called respectability.

      • Opinion | Activists and Parliamentarians Join Together to Prevent Armed Drones in Germany

        "People are saying they cannot think of any peace movement struggle in recent years that has won such a striking victory. This brings hope to the whole peace movement."

      • Experts on Military-Industrial Complex Blast Trump Plan to Sell Nearly $500 Million in Bombs to Criminal Saudi Regime

        "The United States simply should not be selling weapons to Saudi Arabia, especially given their role in exacerbating the suffering in Yemen."

      • 'Unhinged, Lame-Duck President Wants to Start a War': Warnings as Trump Blames Iran for Rocket Attack

        A spokesperson for Iran's Foreign Ministry called the U.S. president's accusation "baseless" and "fabricated."

      • Trump Baselessly Blames Iran for Rocket Attack on US Embassy in Baghdad
      • As Trump Threatens War With Iran, 150 House Democrats Endorse Biden Vow to Rejoin Nuclear Deal

        "Biden has a narrow window of opportunity at the start of his presidency to undo Trump's mess."

      • 'Our Carceral System Laid Bare': Trump Pardons Cronies Stone and Manafort as DOJ Proceeds With Lame-Duck Execution Spree

        "Trump is pardoning his political allies while he's executing people on death row at an unprecedented rate. His deeds are unconscionable."

      • Daniel Pearl: Court orders release of man accused in journalist's murder

        Omar Sheikh was acquitted of Daniel Pearl's murder earlier this year but had remained in jail after an appeal against that decision began.

        The Sindh High Court in Karachi has now ruled that Mr Sheikh's temporary detention was illegal.

      • Western Sahara: A Rare Look Inside Africa’s Last Colony as U.S. Recognizes Moroccan Occupation

        The United States has become the first nation in the world to recognize Morocco’s annexation of Western Sahara. The Trump administration announced the major policy shift on December 10 — International Human Rights Day — as part of a deal that saw Morocco become the fourth Arab nation to normalize ties to Israel in recent months. In this special rebroadcast of a Democracy Now! exclusive documentary, we break the media blockade and go to occupied Western Sahara in the northwest of Africa to document the decades-long Sahrawi struggle for freedom and Morocco’s violent crackdown. In late 2016, Democracy Now! managed to get into the Western Saharan city of Laayoune, becoming the first international news team to report from the occupied territory in years. Many of the Sahrawis in this film are currently under police siege or in hiding.

      • Trump will do anything for Saudi crown prince, but won't call U.S. victims of Saudi terrorism

        Now the Trump administration is reportedly weighing whether to grant Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman legal immunity from a federal lawsuit accusing him of targeting a former intelligence officer for assassination. The decision could also lead to the dismissal of other cases against MBS, including one accusing him of directing the murder and dismemberment of dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi in 2018.

        The move, however, could also thwart possible legal action on the part of the Pensacola victims, who may be covered under the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act, which gives federal courts jurisdiction over a foreign state's support for acts of terrorism against U.S. targets, even if the foreign county is not a designated state sponsor of terrorism.

      • Blackwater’s Bullets Scarred Iraqis. Trump’s Pardon Renewed the Pain.

        The killings cast a harsh spotlight on how heavily armed American security contractors were acting with impunity after the U.S. invasion of Iraq, angering Iraqi officials whose own investigation also found no evidence to support Blackwater’s claims that the convoy had come under fire first.

        It was the first time that many Americans began coming to grips with the growing role that Blackwater — founded by Erik D. Prince, a former Navy SEAL member and future ally of President Trump — was taking in the sprawling U.S. war on terrorism, winning billions of dollars in contracts as the firm racked up accusations of abuses with few consequences.

    • Environment

      • This California Law Offers Biden a Tool in the Fight for Environmental Justice

        Dillon Delvo never set out to become an environmental justice crusader. But as a native resident of Stockton, Calif., the second-generation Filipino American has long been forced to breathe some of the nation’s worst pollution. Crisscrossed by five freeways and home to a bustling seaport and the associated network of trucks, cars, railways, and ships, Stockton is burdened by California’s highest asthma rate. It is also the nation’s most racially diverse city, with ample Black, Hispanic, Asian American, and white populations included among its 313,000 residents.

      • Wildlife/Nature

        • Mexican Wolf Killings Expose the Dark Underbelly of Western Culture

          Still, all the mangled livestock in those color photos didn’t prepare me for looking at photos of dead Mexican wolves. I have recently been poring through law enforcement reports of lobo deaths that were provided to me by the Center for Biological Diversitywho obtained them under the Freedom of Information Act and, let me tell you, there are some real sickos out there killing wolves. Like, really sick.

          I recently uncovered some evidence that Craig Thiessen, already known as a brutal wolf-hating rancher who whacked a trapped young wolf #1385 (named “Mia Tuk”) with a shovel so hard that it broke loose the lobo’s jaw, actually admitted to beating trapped wolves twice. He apparently confessed that he beat two trapped lobos into submission, and in a later declaration, he claims he let Mia Tuk go free afterwards and “sadly, it was later killed by other wolves.” The “sadly” of that sentence really ices the cake of this guy’s crime, given that he’s the same person who was investigated for leaving out poisoned meatballs near cow carcasses on the public lands that he rents from the American public to graze his cattle.

    • Finance

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • The Fake Political and Media Class

        This blog has been silent for three weeks so nothing would stand between the “bold” predictions in my last article, and the proof that they were true. I am in fact neither particularly prescient nor brilliant. To anybody with serious experience of diplomatic negotiation, it was very obvious a deal was fairly easy. As I predicted, the level playing field mechanism is solved by it not only being a case of the UK following EU standards, but of mutual rights. In the entirely improbable circumstance of Tory UK adopting higher environmental, social or safety standards than the EU, the UK will have resort to a range of measures against unfair competition; just as the EU can in the much more likely scenario of the UK failing to keep up with evolving improvements in these areas. The same goes for state aid. The mutual obligation undercuts the “sovereignty” argument and squares that (silly) circle. Elsewhere, a few tonnes of fish here or there was never going to outweigh the manufacturing interests on both sides. So this very limited agreement, covering the 22% of UK/EU trade that is in goods, was always a shoo-in.

      • Civil Rights Groups Denounce Georgia Officials For Closing Early Voting Sites Ahead of Senate Runoffs

        "Restoring all early voting sites isn't a concession—it's restoring a baseline for voting access."

      • Instead of Prosecuting Trump, Give Him the OJ Treatment

        Prosecutors in New York seem intent on bringing The Donald down one way or another, but at the federal level Trump-haters can probably expect little joy. Presidents don’t like the idea of prosecuting their predecessors, lest they themselves start, and get caught on, a € never-ending “he’s out, let’s get him!” merry-go-round.

        But there’s another way.

      • No, Joe, Don’t Roll out the Red Carpet for Torture Enablers

        Now we are again reminded of the grim Bush legacy with President-elect Biden’s nomination of Avril Haines for Director of National Intelligence. Haines, who has an inside-the-beltway reputation for being nice and soft spoken, was a little too nice to CIA agents who hacked the computers of Senate Intelligence Committee investigators looking into the CIA use of torture—waterboarding, sleep deprivation, hypothermia, rectal feeding, whippings, sexual humiliation—at prisons in Guatanamo and Afghanistan during the Bush War on Terror.

        As Deputy Director of the CIA in the Obama administration, Haines chose not to discipline those CIA hackers who violated the separation of powers, crossing the boundary line and beaching the firewall between the executive and legislative branches. To add insult to injury, Haines led the team that redacted an exhaustive 5-year, 6,000-page Senate Intelligence Committee Report on Torture until it was reduced to a censored, 500-page summary smeared with black ink to cover up the screaming horrors and shield those responsible.

      • Opinion | President-Elect Biden’s Voting Rights To-Do List

        Trump’s assault on our democracy reinforces the Biden administration’s obligation to do everything within its power to protect the right to vote.

      • Opinion | Trump May Be Leaving But The Damage He Caused Isn’t Going Anywhere

        A Christmas poem and a plea for congressional oversight in the New Year.

      • Opinion | Pay Attention to the Risk of Martial Law

        The latest ravings of our tyrannical President highlight a true threat to democracy.

      • In a Crisis, a Compromise Solution Is Worse Than No Solution at All

        Roosevelt, La Follette complained, was too quick to compromise with reactionaries. FDR insisted that “half a loaf is better than no bread.” While that might seem intuitively obvious, La Follette had a ready reply. “Half a loaf, as a rule, dulls the appetite, and destroys the keenness of interest in attaining the full loaf.” That can be dangerous. The average adult male requires approximately 2500 calories of nutrition per day. 1250 is better than 0, but 1250 is still malnutrition that would eventually kill him.

        Even in a long-running crisis, the sustained agitation necessary to pressure the political classes into granting concessions doesn’t usually occur before people’s suffering has become acute. If the powers that be provide partial relief in the form of a half-measure that partly alleviates a problem, angry citizens can be persuaded to put down their pitchforks and go home peaceably. Yet the problem persists.

      • John Locke and America’s Cult of Private Property

        Donald Trump spent the final months of the 2020 presidential campaign trying to convince voters that Joe Biden—under the influence of his “communist” running mate Kamala Harris—was not the moderate he ran as but a crypto-socialist. “Socialism is the mainstream of the Biden campaign,” Trump asserted at a rally in August.

      • Opinion | Trump’s Foreseeable Coup Attempt

        American exceptionalism lulls us into thinking that what has happened in other countries cannot happen here.

      • Trump Pardons Stone and Manafort as DOJ Proceeds With Executions
      • A Brave Pastor’s Vision
      • Right-Wing Soap Opera in the Netherlands: the Second Act of Thierry Baudet?

        But few of these groups can compete at the level of flamboyance and perpetual controversy with the Dutch party Forum for Democracy (FvD) and its narcissistic leader Thierry Baudet. This “new, fresh, different” political force nearly won the 2019 (provincial, Senate, and European Parliament) elections by attracting people disillusioned with dominant parties and the government. Although the FvD is more a soap opera of questionable quality than a legitimate political force, it nevertheless reflects Dutch contemporary society and its discontents.

        Like the rest of the European right wing, Baudet was enthusiastic about Donald Trump. A few months ago, Baudet was sure of what would happen in the U.S. elections. “Trump is just going to win a second term next week,” he predicted in late October. “The polls are—again—wrong.” After Trump’s loss, the European right was generally quiet. Not Baudet, however, who echoed Trump by claiming during a radio interview on November 11 that major voter fraud had taken place in the United States. More recently, Baudet has had to refocus on his own battles at home.

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • How COVID Changed Content Moderation: Year in Review 2020

        After a successful Who Has Your Back? campaign in 2019 to encourage large platforms to adopt best practices and endorse the Santa Clara Principles, 2020 was poised to be a year of more progress toward transparency and accountability in content moderation across the board. The pandemic changed that, however, as companies relied even more on automated tools in response to disrupted content moderator workforces and new types and volumes of misinformation.

        At a moment when online platforms became newly vital to people’s work, education, and lives, this uptick in automation threatens freedom of expression online. That makes the Santa Clara Principles on Transparency and Accountability in Content Moderation more important than ever—and, like clockwork, transparency reporting later in the year demonstrated the pitfalls and costs of automated content moderation.

        As the pandemic wore on, new laws regulating fake news online led to censorship and prosecutions across the world, including notable cases in Cambodia, India, and Turkey that targeted and harmed journalists and activists.

    • Freedom of Information/Freedom of the Press

      • Kazakhstan Holds Blogger in Psychiatric Clinic Over Government Criticism

        For nearly three weeks Kazakhstan blogger Aigul Utepova was detained in a psychiatric clinic for “observation” after she wrote critical posts of the government on social media.

        Utepova, who has over 8,000 followers on both her Facebook page and YouTube channel, had already been under house arrest since September when a court in Kazakhstan’s capital, Nur-Sultan, ordered that she be moved to the clinic, according to rights groups and her daughter.

        The 50-year-old journalist, who until 2018 worked for the news agency, is accused of “participating in an extremist organization.”

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • Opinion | Illegality Does Not Mean Impossibility, and Seeking Consolation About Trump From Legal Experts Is Stupid

        The question at hand is not what the law says, but whether it is possible for a tyrant to violate and overturn the rule of law.

      • 'Complete Disregard for Human Life': US Agents Threaten Christmas Eve Raid Against Humanitarians Giving Aid to Refugees Near Border

        One volunteer noted the cruel irony of such actions "on the eve of a holiday meant to celebrate hospitality towards travelers from distant lands."

      • Opinion | Shot In the Head: What Kind of Boundless Evil Is This, America?
      • At Its Best, Christmas Is About the Joy That Fuels the Struggle for Justice
      • When Black Movements Win, Everybody But the 1 Percent Wins
      • Wearing a Cross But Violating Basic Christian Values

        Even before Ms. McEnany says her first word, I cannot help but notice the gold cross she wears around her neck, right at her throat, highly visible to the camera. The cross, I believe, is intentionally obvious and is deeply upsetting to me. As if to provide her with some degree of legitimacy, Ms. McEnany wears a cross to make sure viewers know that she is a Christian and to wrap her pronouncements in an invisible halo.

        In my mind, wearing a cross comes with some expectations, even demands. As a Christian pastor, I have been known to tell parishioners that wearing a cross must be earned. If you consistently behave like a true Christ-follower, then you get to wear the cross: The behavior comes first, not the jewelry. My bottom line is this: You cannot wear a cross as a public display of your piety and then violate basic Christian values with your words and actions.

      • Hugo Chávez and Maoism: A Conversation with Chris Gilbert

        The Chinese revolutionary experience in general, and Mao Zedong’s thought in particular, had a global impact. What can you tell us about its influence in Venezuela?€ 

        Well, the first thing to say is that in Venezuela, Maoism did not play an important role in any direct sense. That is a question of timing and geography. In the first place, the Cuban Revolution’s influence was so important in the whole region that it tended to eclipse everything else. Then, when Maoism became a fashion, capturing the imagination of many European leftists in the late 60s and after, it did influence people in the Venezuelan left, but by then the revolutionary struggle was already beginning to subside.

      • She Noticed $200 Million Missing, Then She Was Fired

        Earlier this year, the governing board of one of California’s most powerful regulatory agencies unleashed troubling accusations against its top employee.

        Commissioners with the California Public Utilities Commission, or CPUC, accused Executive Director Alice Stebbins of violating state personnel rules by hiring former colleagues without proper qualifications. They said the agency chief misled the public by asserting that as much as $200 million was missing from accounts intended to fund programs for the state’s blind, deaf and poor. At a hearing in August, Commission President Marybel Batjer said that Stebbins had discredited the CPUC.

      • Inside Trump and Barr’s Last-Minute Killing Spree

        BOP also explored using a different drug: the opioid fentanyl. In a March 2018 memo, then-BOP Director Mark S. Inch said BOP found a fentanyl supplier but warned “there may be negative publicity associated with using a drug to which so many Americans are addicted.”

      • US Congress Passes Landmark Bill in Support of Tibet

        The U.S. Congress on Monday passed a bill that is expected to upgrade U.S. support for Tibetans in key areas, including sanctioning Chinese officials if they try to appoint the next Dalai Lama.

        The Tibetan Policy and Support Act (TPSA) was passed by the House and Senate as an amendment to the $1.4 trillion government-spending bill and the $900 billion coronavirus relief package.

        It will pave the way for the U.S. government to issue economic and visa sanctions against any Chinese officials who interfere with the succession of the Dalai Lama, and will require China to allow Washington to establish a consulate in Lhasa — the capital of the Tibet Autonomous Region – before Beijing can open any more consulates in the U.S.

    • Monopolies

      • Patents

        • Time to End Patent Monopolies

          The crisis did not just happen by chance. As we now know, drug manufacturers and distributors made large amounts of money pushing their drugs. The actual process of pushing opioids by Purdue Pharma, Johnson & Johnson, and their distributors has been well-documented. While the patent monopoly meant the price of Oxycontin, the most widely marketed drug among the new generation of opioids, was far higher than generic versions, this big profit margin gave Purdue Pharma and others an enormous incentive to push their drugs.

          In particular, they misled doctors and the public about their addictiveness. They hired hundreds of salespeople to promote their drugs as widely as possible, with no concern whatsoever about abuse of their drugs. As a result of a series of recent legal actions, leading manufacturers and distributors have now paid or agreed to pay tens of billions of dollars to compensate individuals and communities for the harm done by their drugs.

      • Copyrights

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