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Links 14/3/2021: KDE Gear 21.04 Branches, Anger Over EPO Statement on EQE

  • GNU/Linux

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • System 76 Thelio Mira Is A Desktop Powered By AMD Ryzen 5000

        System76 launches its latest Linux-focused desktop computer called Thelio Mira. Pricing starts at $1,499.

        The Mira sits between the base Thelio desktop and the Thelio Major in terms of size, cost, and upgradability. It bears a slightly larger footprint than the base Thelio at a dimension of 17.18″ x 9.96″ x 13.03″ (or 436.35 x 253 x 331mm). Mira has the benefit of holding up to two graphics cards, versus the one GPU the base desktop can have.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • Linux Action News 180

        The A-Team assembled to make open source more trustworthy, why we might be about to find out how much SUSE is worth, and some essential project updates.

      • BitWarden CLI Would Be Amazing If Only...

        Bitwarden has been my password manager of choice for quite a while but I had never got around to testing out the CLI client since I'm typically just using it inside of a web browser but today that's going to change a bit.

      • Can you REPLACE CHROME OS with this Linux distro that runs ANDROID APPS?

        Chrome OS has been getting more and more popular, as chromebooks prices are relatively low, and many people just need a browser to work. But this system is still completely owned by Google, tied into their services, and as such, not very private. FOrtunately, there is an alternative on the horizon, and it's called Ubuntu Web Remix.

    • Kernel Space

      • Google Proposes Multi-Generational LRU For Linux To Yield Much Better Performance

        Google engineer Yu Zhao sent out patches proposing a "multigenerational LRU" implementation for the Linux kernel's least recently used (LRU) handling for memory page replacement.

        The engineers working on multi-generational LRU found the Linux kernel's current page reclaim code to be too expensive for CPU usage and making poor choices over what to evict. But with this new LRU implementation it's more "performant, versatile, and straightforward" with promising results.

      • Graphics Stack

        • Wayland in 2021

          A year ago I wrote about my Wayland setup on Linux. This year I would like to give you a small update on how I am going with Wayland on Arch Linux and how it is my daily driver at home and work.

    • Applications

      • How Grep Got Its Name? The History Behind Grep's Creation

        If you're a Linux user, you must have probably come across the oddly-named Grep utility to search for patterns in files or piped output from commands. You may wonder where the program got its name.

        This article will explain grep's origins along with some brief information on the role of Grep in modern Linux culture.

      • AudioTube, a client for YouTube Music

        Recently I started working on a small new project, AudioTube. It is a client for YouTube Music made with Kirigami that works equally well on mobile devices and desktops.

      • 7-Zip For Linux Is Here After 20 Years As A Windows Exclusive

        Igor Pavlov, the developer of widely popular among Windows users 7-Zip archiving tool, has released the first official builds of 7-Zip for Linux.

        The 7-Zip archiving tool is the open-source software created by Igor Pavlov back in 1999. 7-Zip is an archiving tool widely popular among Windows users. It is able to open zip, gzip, bzip, tar, and RAR files, along with a many others. You can use 7-Zip to create a cabinet of similar files that will help you organize everything. The best thing about file compression is that you lessen the size of the file or files that you archived. This means you will have even more free space for other new and bigger files.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • nslookup Linux Command Explained With Examples

        nslookup is a network administration tool for querying the DNS (Domain Name System) servers to obtain domain name or IP address mapping. nslookup can also be used to query several different types of DNS records such as MX, NS and SOA records.

        This tool is often used for troubleshooting DNS or name resolution issues. In short, the Domain Name System provides mapping between human readable names (like and their associated IP addresses (like

      • How To Install Let's Encrypt SSL Certificates Using Certbot

        Step by step tutorial how to use the Let’s Encrypt certbot to install SSL certificates for free and automatically renew them.

        Above all Let’s Encrypt is an open source and it is completely free. It allows anyone to install a trusted SSL certificate on their website and benefit from the enhanced security an encrypted connection provides. Unlike a self-signed SSL certificate, a Let’s Encrypt certificate is recognized as fully verified, and displays the padlock icon in the address bar of modern web browsers.

      • Citations

        The more I want to incorporate some way to create citations in a document, the more I’m starting to hate citations and bibliography management with a passion. The document in question is supposed to export well to both HTML and PDF, the latter via TeX. While the bibliography management in TeX and friends is more or less “solved,”Through a monumental effort and probably some tears, as I imagine—BibTeX has been released 36 years ago. the story looks rather different for bibliography management in HTML.

      • How to Create Indices in PostgreSQL – Linux Hint

        Indices are specialized search tables used by databank hunt engines to accelerate query results. An index is a reference to the information in a table. For example, if the names in a contact book are not alphabetized, you would have to go down every row and search through every name before you reach the specific phone number that you are searching for. An index speeds up the SELECT commands and WHERE phrases, performing data entry in the UPDATE and INSERT commands. Regardless of whether indexes are inserted or deleted, there is no impact on the information contained in the table. Indexes can be special in the same way that the UNIQUE limitation helps to avoid replica records in the field or set of fields for which the index exists.

      • How to Install ReactJS on Ubuntu 20.04? – Linux Hint

        React or Reacts was launched in 2011. It is a front-end JavaScript library that is used to develop UI components. It is managed by Facebook and open-source developers.

        ReactJS is an open-source library that makes it effortless to create and maintain interactive UI specifically for single-page applications. Many developers are using it because of its flexibility, integrity, and its feature to bring Html directly into JS. Many well-known corporations such as Facebook, Uber, and Instagram used the ReactJS framework to create interfaces.

      • How to Install Anaconda in Linux Mint 20? – Linux Hint

        Anaconda is a popular Python platform that is widely used in Machine learning and its associated fields. It contains many open-source data packages, and we can also install more than 7500 data packages using Anaconda repositories.

        Anaconda can be installed on Linux Mint 20 from the installer script.

      • Install and Review Cockpit on Lubuntu 20.04

        What is Cockpit?

        Cockpit is a Linux application that allows you to manage Linux itself via the web. As an example, you can see which applications are running or install updates without having to log in to the machine. It also allows you to connect to and control other machines.

        Why use it?

        It allows you to monitor the system, to have a look at things without having to use a graphical environment and its integration with the terminal makes it flexible and convenient.

      • How to Install Evernote (Nixnote2) on Linux Mint? – Linux Hint

        Evernote is a multi-platform and popular note-taking application. It helps us organize and manage daily tasks by providing prominent features such as listing, sketching, and note-taking. We can easily integrate the Evernote application to Gmail, Outlook, etc. Evernote application is not available Linux. However, various unofficial Evernote clients are available for Linux. Among those, Nixnote2 is a lightweight Evernote client available for Linux. It provides all the Evernote’s features on Linux Desktop.

        This guide explains the Nixnote2 installation on Linux Mint.

        Nixnote2 can be installed on Linux Mint from the Software Manager application and the terminal. Moreover, the Evernote web client is available for Linux Mint via snap.

      • How to Install Signal Messenger on Linux Mint? – Linux Hint

        Signal Messenger is a popular, multi-platform application used for sending instant messages, making audio and video calls. It is widely used due to the privacy features that it provides to the end-user. Signal can be installed on Linux Mint from the software manager application, official Signal repository, snap, and flatpak application manager.

        This post will discuss the installation process of Signal Messenger on Linux Mint.

      • How to Use PostgreSQL Materialized Views – Linux Hint

        Views in PostgreSQL are graphical tables that display data from the corresponding tables. Common views can also be modified. PostgreSQL takes the concept of views to the next stage by allowing views to store information materially, referred to as materialized views. A materialized view preserves the output of a time-consuming, complicated query, allowing you to query the results quickly at any time. Materialized viewpoints are frequently used in data warehouses and business intelligence applications because they are helpful in situations that require fast access to data.

      • PostgreSQL UUID Types and Functions – Linux Hint

        The PostgreSQL UUID, or Universal Unique Identifier, is specified by RFC 4122 and has a 128-bit length. Internal algorithms are used to construct the UUID, and each value is distinct. PostgreSQL has its own UUID data type and generates them with modules. The UUID data type is commonly cast off within distributed databases because this data type ensures singularity, rather than the SERIAL type, which only generates singular values inside a single database. While PostgreSQL allows you to save and contrast UUID values, this one does not have methods for creating them at its core. Rather, it relies on third-party packages that have specific UUID generation algorithms.

        Let us now take a look at certain representations of UUID values, as seen in the diagram below. A UUID is made up of 32 bits of hexadecimal digits with up to four hyphens, as seen in the diagram below. A UUID can also have a value of 0, which means that all bits are empty.

      • How to Use Quota on Ubuntu? – Linux Hint

        A Quota is a built-in feature of the Linux kernel that is used to set a limit of how much disk space a user or a group can use. It is also used to limit the maximum number of files a user or a group can create on Linux. The filesystem where you want to use quota must also support quota. Some of the filesystems that support quota on Linux are ext2, ext3, ext4, xfs, etc.

        In this article, I will show you how to use quota in a multi-user environment on Ubuntu. So, let’s get started.

      • How To Disable WiFi on Linux System: GUI and CLI Methods

        Disabling Wifi on a Linux desktop might be essential if you’re running an old computer that requires an external USB wifi adapter or need to use an ethernet cable. From my personal experience, I can say that using an ethernet cable to connect internet provides better services no matter which Linux system you’re operating. If you disable Wifi on a Linux-operated laptop, it could also save your battery life. If you’re a professional Linux user, you might be more comfortable using the CLI mode than the GUI methods of disabling Wifi.


        To disable Wifi on Linux, you don’t need to know anything but basic computing knowledge. Modern Linux distributions have a very smooth and straightforward desktop environment that is easy to operate. You can find network, Wifi, and other connectivity settings on the setting panel on your Linux system.

        This post will cover both GUI and CLI methods of disabling Wifi on the Debian, Red Hat, and Fedora Linux systems. As different Linux distributions might use the same DE, I’ll describe the method of disabling Wifi based on the Linux desktop environment, not based on Linux distributions.

      • nspawn-runner and btrfs

        systemd-nspawn has an interesting --ephemeral option that sets up temporary copy-on-write filesystem snapshots on filesystems that support it, like btrfs.

        Using copy on write means that one could perform maintenance on the source chroots, without disrupting existing CI sessions.


        If you want to try it out, you can find the code on KDE’s GitLab, invent. In addition to the common dependencies of Qt and Kirigami, it requires the ytmusicapi and youtube_dl python packages, which you can install using pip if they are not packaged in your distro.

        Keep in mind AudioTube is still in an early state of development. Next I will look into implementing better error handling. Of course I am always happy about merge requests :)

        So far there is one known issue left: On Manjaro, Python always tries to encode / decode as ascii, which makes the app crash with some data. I can’t say yet whether it affects other distros too, but it doesn’t happen on my debian testing install. As a workaround, setting LC_ALL=en_US.utf8 helps.

      • How To Install Ansible on Debian 10 - idroot

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Ansible on Debian 10. For those of you who didn’t know, Ansible is a radically simple IT automation engine that simplifies cloud computing, configuration management, program setup, intra-service orchestration, and several other IT needs. Ansible uses a very simple language (YAML, in the form of Ansible Playbooks) that allows you to spell out your automation jobs in a way that means plain English. Using Ansible you can control multi-host or device simultaneously using a single command. You don’t need to install the client in the apparatus or each server.

        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 Ansible on a Debian 10 (Buster).

      • How I stand working with Windows VMs

        Sometimes you find yourself in the need of having to use Windows, to port your applications to the platform using the awesome Craft buildsystem.

        Since as Plasma users, the Windows GUI (especially the Powershell terminal emulator) is most likely only going to be a disappointment, let’s set up an openssh server, so we can use the virtual machine from our beloved terminal emulator, Konsole.

        Microsoft themselves describe how this can be done in a tutorial.

      • lisp-use-for-transpose-chars

        I had thought that Emacs’ C-t was mainly about correcting typos. It turns out to be extremely useful when working on Lisp macros which themselves write macros. This typically involves nested quasiquotation, where you can have multiple alternating sequences of open parentheses and backticks, or of commas, quotation marks and ampersats. While you’re working on it you often need to reorder these character sequences and C-t does a great job.

      • How to play Cyberpunk 2077 on Linux

        Cyberpunk 2077 is a 2020 open-world RPG developed and published by CD Projekt Red. It centers around fictional Night City in a neon-covered tech future. Here’s how to get it working on your Linux system.

    • Games

      • Go Norse in the Crusader Kings III: Northern Lords pack releasing March 16

        The last of the announcements from Paradox Insider today to be covered here on GOL is Crusader Kings III: Northern Lords, a Norse themed 'Flavor Pack' for one of 2020's best games. Meant to keep players going until the first major expansion, Northern Lords pulls in the popular Norse culture some more with new events and themes related to Norse society.

      • Stellaris: Nemesis launches April 15 giving you more power than ever | GamingOnLinux

        Ready for the ultimate power? Stellaris: Nemesis will launch on April 15 bringing with it some huge additions to Paradox's space strategy game.

        Putting the fate of the entire galaxy in your hands, Nemesis will allow players to actually become an end-game crisis or rally the whole galaxy against it. Paradox said "There are many paths to power, and players can either embrace order and unity as a Galactic Custodian to combat endgame crises - or choose chaos with the Menace option to BECOME the endgame crisis, savoring the silence of a galaxy where theirs is the only voice that matters. Long story short: Nemesis gives fans the most powerful tools ever available in Stellaris".

      • Paradox resumes development on Surviving Mars, new update and expansion planned

        Surviving Mars from Paradox Interactive and originally Haemimont Games from 2018 is being revived and expanded under a different developer named Abstraction.

        Paradox will be launching an In-Dome Buildings Pack, developed in partnership with long-time community modder Silva. In addition, a free Tourism Update is planned to launch on Monday, March 15. The Tourism Update that will be free for everyone adds in an RC Safari, adds buildings, and more with Paradox saying we can expect some of the most requested tourism features to be added in with rewards and consequences.


        If you don't own Surviving Mars, it's available for Linux from Humble Store, GOG, Paradox and Steam.

      • Retroarch Not Working? Here's a Bunch of Fixes - Make Tech Easier

        Retroarch’s game detection and playlist update features are great if you are using it to play around a dozen ROMs. That, though, defeats its very purpose, to be a frontend for hundreds of games on different systems.

        Unfortunately, when dealing with extensive ROM collections, scanning a directory filled with ROMs to detect the games automatically can take a lot of time. Does your collection span multiple systems with large ROMs (like the Playstation, Gamecube, or anything newer)? In such scenarios, this “scanning” can eat up your whole evening.

        An additional problem is that Retroarch can’t recognize many popular formats, even if its own cores support them. For example, good luck trying to automatically scan a folder filled with games for Sony’s first PlayStation in compressed PBP format. After what could be hours of waiting, you will still have an empty list in front of you.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • 10 Best And Most Popular Icon Themes For Linux

        Icon themes are the easiest way to change the looks of your Linux desktop. Here is the list of the 10 best icon themes you should try.

        Not being tied to how the desktop looks and operates is one of the many perks of being a Linux user. Are you bored with the icon theme set currently installed on your Linux machine?

        You can find many icon sets to radically change your desktop’s looks, especially when you combine them with a matching wallpaper and window color theme. So let’s take a look at 10 of the best Linux icon themes that will upgrade your OS’s look.

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • KDE Gear 21.04 releases branches created

          Make sure you commit anything you want to end up in the 21.04 releases to them

          We're already past the dependency freeze.

          The Feature Freeze and Beta is this Thursday 18 of March.

        • Sok Update 3

          Here is the third update on how things are going on with KDE Social.

          I am mostly done with the twitter and mastodon part of things and something that was big hurdle which is figuring out a proper way to schedule posts on the server side .

          I have pushed most stuff to master now .


          A small announcement : I am looking for testers for this project now . I have put up detailed instructions on KDE's gitlab README to build and run this . Currently the only supported platform is Linux . Instructions will be similar for Windows since this is based on python . I don't have any experience using a macintosh so I can gaurantee anything about that. Although please do reach out to me if you successfully build it on there.

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • Alexander Mikhaylenko: Reinventing tabs

          These tabs are used in multi-window apps such as web browsers, text editors, file managers or terminal emulators. They are opened and closed by the user, they can be reordered, dragged between windows or into new windows by dropping them on desktop. They need scrolling. They always have a title and a close button, sometimes an icon and/or a spinner. They hide when only one tab is present. They can be closed by middle clicking, they have context menus. Sometimes they can be pinned or have an extra icon, for example an audio playback indicator. Sometimes they need confirmation on closing.


          However, this is very basic. Mobile tab switchers are often very elaborate, for example using 3D stacks of cards, grids, carousels or lists with previews. Unfortunately, all of that is off limits in GTK 3. However, with GTK 4 it’s not, and we can do things such as this:


          Having a proper overview would also allow to finally remove the tab popover from Epiphany, which is still there in 40, but only shows when the tab bar starts scrolling.

          A GTK 4 port of HdyTabView and HdyTabBar is complete and fully working and just needs code review, though the overview is not a reusable widget yet.

    • Distributions

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • CentOS Replacements For Your Production Linux Servers

          CentOS 8 suddenly has its life cut short to the end of 2021. 5 Linux distributions you may want to consider for CentOS replacements.

          On December 8th, 2020, Red Hat shocked the Linux world. They announced they would be shifting all of their investment in CentOS Linux from the popular downstream CentOS distribution. This is where history repeats itself. Back in 2004, Red Hat did the same thing by EOL’ing all versions of “Red Hat Linux” and forced users to Red Hat Enterprise Linux.

          If you are currently using CentOS 8 you will have to find an alternative operating system to use. Its end-of-life cycle has been cut short in December, 2021. But if you use CentOS 7 you do not have to take any action right now. CentOS 7 will reach its end-of-life June 30th, 2024.

          Red Hat will not release any new CentOS distributions, only CentOS Stream. CentOS will no longer be a stable point distribution but a rolling release. In addition to, the announcement clearly stated that CentOS Stream is not a replacement for CentOS Linux. Therefore many CentOS users feel betrayed and are looking for a way out. They find out that their “until-2029” distro had become an “until-2021” distro.

          Below is a list of 5 Linux distributions that you can consider as a possible replacement for your current CentOS server.

      • Debian Family

        • SparkyLinux 2021.03 Comes With An Added KDE Plasma Desktop

          SparkyLinux 2021.03 is the first snapshot in 2021 of Sparky which is based on the Debian testing “Bullseye“.

          Above all SparkyLinux is a desktop-oriented Linus distribution based on the Debian. The project offers a ready to use operating system with a set of various customized lightweight desktops to choose from. As a result it is fast, lightweight and fully customizable.

          The project was born in 2011 as an Ubuntu remix. After a few months of testing, the base system has been changed to Debian and it was renamed to SparkyLinux.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Kodi 19.0 "Matrix" Brings A Wealth Of Changes And Improved Decoding

        Kodi 19.0 “Matrix” brings a new features, visual makeover, and significant improvements to playback to this popular home theater software.

        Kodi is one of the most popular media center applications. It combines many media sources into one easy-to-navigate interface. After a wait of almost 2 years, Kodi 19 is now finally rolling out, nicknamed “Matrix”.

      • SaaS/Back End/Databases

        • [Old] Exploring Borland dBase IV for DOS

          Last week I took a dive into the office life of yesteryear with Microsoft Works 3.0 for DOS. Now I’m exploring some more retro business software, this time delving into the ancient database management system known as Borland dBase. dBase was THE first commercially successful DBMS in computing history, and in fact it is still active today, which would give it one of the longest lifespans of any major application software. It began its life in 1978 as a software package for PTDOS and CP/M dubbed Vulcan. It was later bought by Ashton-Tate, renamed dBase, and ported to the Apple II line and to DOS. During the 80’s and 90’s it went through several vastly different versions and was copied by many different software companies, soon being acquired again by Borland Software, who created a third version known as dBase III. dBase is now on its eleventh incarnation, last released by dBase LLC in early 2017.

      • Productivity Software/LibreOffice/Calligra

      • CMS

        • WordPress 5.7 Brings You Fresh Colors And An Improved Editor

          WordPress 5.7 “Esperanza” was released today. It comes with a few great enhancements, both in core and the editor. Let’s dive in!

          WordPress 5.7 “Esperanza” is the first WordPress release of 2021. It is named in honor of Esperanza Spalding, a modern musical prodigy. The new version brings improvements to the WordPress block editor functionality, user interface, and more.

      • Programming/Development

        • ZenTao: an open-source project management system for coders

          ZenTao is an open-source project management system for software developers, teams, companies, freelancers both on-site and remotely.

          It’s an application lifecycle management solution that facilitates Agile development.

          ZenTao has an open-source version and it is released under ZPL, version 1.2.

          ZenTao is offered in three versions, open source/community, pro, and biz.

        • Clang CFI Patches For The Linux Kernel Aim To Provide Better Security - Phoronix

          Now that Clang LTO support was merged into Linux 5.12 for x86_64 and ARM64, Google engineers have sent out their patches enabling Clang Control-Flow Integrity (CFI) support for the Linux kernel.

          Clang's CFI support depended upon the link-time optimization (LTO) support first landing in the kernel. Now that LTO is in place, Sami Tolvanen and the other Google engineers sent out their kernel patches for bringing up the CFI security feature.

        • Managing the Console with the iostream Classes in C++ – Linux Hint

          In computing, the console is the computer keyboard and the computer monitor. In the past, output was sent directly to the monitor screen and not to a window displayed on the monitor. For the ordinary computer user, applications today do not use the monitor explicitly. These applications use windows displayed on the monitor. However, the computer programmer still needs to use the monitor screen. Though the programmer still needs to use the monitor screen, the operating system does not allow him to do that. The operating system provides a window that simulates the monitor screen. In the Windows Operating System, this window is called the Command Prompt. In the Linux Operating System and its variants, this window is called the terminal.

          It is expected that the reader already knows how to use the Command Prompt or the Terminal. This article explains how to read characters and strings from the keyboard and send characters and strings to the terminal (or command prompt). Every C++ programmer needs to know in this article.

        • Shell/Bash/Zsh/Ksh

          • [Old] Piping curl to s(hell)

            Below I prepared a harmless script for you to execute, please copy the following line and paste it into your terminal (or a text editor - you shouldn't trust a random blog post): [...]

          • [Old] Don't Pipe to your Shell

            It's everywhere. Sometimes they tell you to ignore certificates as well (looking at you, Salt). That's dumb.

            The main reason I think it's dumb (other than running arbitrary commands on your machine that could change based on user agent to trick you) is its failure mode.

  • Leftovers

    • Opinion | Recalling the Travails of the 'Big Stick'

      A military establishment primarily intended to deter and defend became an instrument of power projection.

    • [Old] Taking control of your own data

      Given the recent reports about Atlassian handing over control over their user's personal Trello account to their former employer I've started paying more attention to the way I store my personal data. While I've been enthusiastic about the idea of self-hosting various services for a while, reading the aforementioned news further pushed me to migrate to several self-hosted alternatives to popular online services.

      Below I listed several self-hosted applications that I run for my personal needs. Hopefully this list will be able to help other people find alternatives to various online services and self-host as much of their data as possible.

      As the recent events prove self-hosting is not only a matter of a worldview or philosophy but simply a basic step towards protecting your own data which as many people as possible should take. I can only imagine how disrupted someone's life could be by a cloud storage provider denying someone access to all their files or an email server maintainer simply locking them out of their only email account.

    • Hardware

      • Dima Kogan: Making the Supernova E3 tail light brighter

        I got a dynamo hub for my bike and a fancy headlight. It's sweet, but I'm discovering that there're no standards for making tail lights work, so I just had to do some light reverse-engineering and soldering. And this is the findings.

        Different manufacturers do tail lights differently. Most tail lights are not connected directly to the dynamo, but to the headlight instead. Busch+Müller tail lights take an AC signal that looks very similar to what the hub is producing. You're not supposed to hook it up to the hub directly, but it does appear to work, and it's not clear how the headlight's tail-light output is different from the hub input. I haven't scoped it.

        Supernova tail lights work differently. Some guy on the internet reverse-engineered the headlight circuit showing an LM317 regulator producing 5.9V for the tail light. I have a Supernova E3 tail light (original one; model E161). The case says "6V", which is close to the 5.9V they give it. It wants its 6V, but I don't have a Supernova headlight, so I don't have 6V to give it. I do have a USB charger, so I have 5V instead. Giving it 5V does appear to work, but that results in less brightness than I would like. Presumably the voltage difference is to blame?

    • Health/Nutrition

      • Jayapal, Dingell to Unveil Medicare for All Act Exactly One Year After 1st Covid Cases Confirmed in Every State

        "This past year makes it incredibly clear why we must pass Medicare for All."

      • Go read this story about how bad software helped slow coronavirus vaccine distrib

        According to Technology Review, the agency knew it needed a robust, one-stop shop that could be used by patients, clinics, employers, and government officials. But instead, the CDC spent $44 million on something called the Vaccine Administration Management System —-VAMS— built by consulting firm Deloitte (via no-bid contracts) which was so inadequate that it has driven some states to try to patch together their own vaccine distribution systems instead.

      • Accelerating Application Programming Interfaces for Scientific Discovery:Researcher Perspectives [PDF]

        The discussions explored the utility and prevalence of using standardized APIs, such as the FHIR€® and FHIR Bulk Data Access APIs, for research to enable scientific discovery, and gathered perspectives from stakeholder representatives in the research community actively working on various initiatives in biomedical and clinical informatics, clinical trials, and other types of health research.

        The findings establish a baseline of activity and current successes using APIs for research and identified the remaining challenges and opportunities for making standardized APIs and apps work for researchers. The findings also highlight various examples of emerging APIs and apps used in the research community and for novel use cases.

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Faulty Software Snarls Vaccine Sign-Ups

          When coronavirus vaccines first became available, state health officials in Virginia turned to software recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to schedule appointments. But people complained that the software, called VAMS, was too confusing for older adults to use.

          So the state switched to another system, PrepMod — but that had problems, too. Links sent to seniors for their appointments were reusable and found their way to Facebook, leading to one vaccination event in Richmond with dozens of overbookings. Some of those people threatened health care workers when they were turned away.

        • What went wrong with America’s $44 million vaccine data system?

          Her frustration is echoed by millions of Americans who have struggled to get vaccines through various chaotic systems. But unlike others in some states, she wasn’t encountering these problems with a third-party consumer service like Eventbrite, or even through an antiquated government system. She was on the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s brand-new, $44 million website called VAMS—the Vaccine Administration Management System, built by the consulting firm Deloitte.

        • Defective Software program Snarls Vaccine Signal-Ups

          When coronavirus vaccines first turned accessible, state well being officers in Virginia turned to software program really useful by the Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention to schedule appointments. However folks complained that the software program, known as VAMS, was too complicated for older adults to make use of.

          So the state switched to a different system, PrepMod — however that had issues, too. Hyperlinks despatched to seniors for his or her appointments have been reusable and located their method to Fb, main to 1 vaccination occasion in Richmond with dozens of overbookings. A few of these folks threatened well being care employees once they have been turned away.

        • Pseudo-Open Source

          • Privatisation/Privateering

            • Linux Foundation

              • Sigstore Is A New And Free Code Signing Service By Linux Foundation

                The Sigstore project will enable developers to sign specific aspects of their development process. This will ensure that files and other assets carry strong, tamper-proof encryption.

                The Linux Foundation, today announced the sigstore project. Founding members include Red Hat, Google and Purdue University. Sigstore improves the security of the software supply chain. It enabling the easy adoption of cryptographic software signing backed by transparency log technologies.

                An inherent weakness of open source code is that it’s difficult to determine its provenance how it was built. That means that it’s prone to supply chain attacks.

        • Security

          • Ready Set & Go!!!

            I added a new “Security Repository” today. What is that? It is unlike the normal security repositories. I added thousands of tools to allow you to do penetration testing. Get this I will be the target. I have spent months closing security holes. Repostorm put me way ahead of Ubuntu as well Kali Linux off the rip. I am working on bringing UNO (Ultimate Network Optimizer) not only to Optimize, but as a security tool. I am still not done, eventually I will drop my IP online and ask you to hack me. Proper term is crack me. Software I am writing is getting off the chain. 93% is where I have been at. Still have internet and still access my network.

          • Ransomware “Paralyzes” Spanish Employment Agency

            Although the payroll system is said not to be affected, face-to-face appointments have had to be cancelled around the country, as the attack has knocked out workstations in 710 SEPE offices and the laptops of remote workers, according to trade union CSIF. It claimed the agency had been “paralyzed” by the attack.

          • Microsoft Exchange Server hacks ‘doubling’ every two hours

            According to Check Point Research (CPR), threat actors are actively exploiting four zero-day vulnerabilities tackled with emergency fixes issued by Microsoft on March 2 -- and attack attempts continue to rise.

            In the past 24 hours, the team has observed "exploitation attempts on organizations doubling every two to three hours."

            The countries feeling the brunt of attack attempts are Turkey, the United States, and Italy, accounting for 19%, 18%, and 10% of all tracked exploit attempts, respectively.

          • Everything you need to know about the Microsoft Exchange Server hack
          • Microsoft Delivers Patches for 89 Vulnerabilities in March Security Release

            The March bundle is 60 percent larger than last month's update Tuesday tally, according to Eric Feldman, a senior product marketing manager at software security solutions company Automox, in a patch Tuesday "Overview" article. The March patches contain 14 CVEs rated "Critical," with five under active exploit.

          • Nim-Based Malware Loader Spreads Via Spear-Phishing Emails

            Spear-phishing emails are spreading the NimzaLoader malware loader, which some say may be used to download Cobalt Strike.

            The TA800 threat group is distributing a malware loader, which researchers call NimzaLoader, via ongoing, highly-targeted spear-phishing emails.


            They cited several major differences between NimzaLoader and BazaLoader: For instance, the two samples use different code-flattening obfuscators, different styles of string decryption and different XOR/rotate-based Windows API hashing algorithms, they said. Other tactics that set NimzaLoader apart include the fact that the malware doesn’t use a domain-generation algorithm and that it makes use of JSON in its command-and-control (C2) communications.

          • Third French hospital hit by cyberattack

            A hospital in southwest France has seen some of its IT systems paralysed by a "ransomware" cyberattack, its management said Tuesday, the third such incident in the last month.

            The 320-bed facility in Oloron-Sainte-Marie near the Pyrenees mountains was hit by the attack on Monday, with screens displaying a demand in English for $50,000 in Bitcoin.

            Hospital workers have had to revert to working with pens and paper, since digital patient records are not available.

            The management system, used to monitor medicine stocks and other supplies, has also been affected at a time when the hospital is taking part in vaccination efforts against COVID-19.

          • Cyberattacks against K-12 schools rose 18% in 2020, report finds

            And while the first three months of 2020 were largely a continuation of the trends of 2019 — a year in which ransomware against the education sector surged — the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic create new threats for schools, all while officials’ were scrambling to outfit teachers and students for virtual learning environments.

          • Microsoft's Exchange Server Security Problem Is Gaining Steam

            The handful of Exchange Server zero-day flaws Microsoft announced earlier this month has snowballed into a much broader problem.

            On March 2, Microsoft issued out-of-band security patches to address four zero-day Exchange Server flaws being exploited by an advanced persistent threat group (APT) it dubbed "Hafnium." The Hafnium group is thought to have used the four flaws in combination to carry out a widespread government and industry espionage campaign.

            Microsoft is now warning that unpatched Exchange Servers are getting attacked to install ransomware dubbed "DearCry." This new ransomware apparently was first detected and reported by researcher Michael Gillespie at the ID-Ransomware Web site, per this Friday Kaspersky Threatpost article.

            Since March 2, attacks on Exchange Server implementations worldwide have "tripled every two hours," according to a Thursday announcement by Check Point Software. Notably, the spike in activity seems to be coming from other attackers besides the Hafnium APT group because they aren't completing all of the attack steps.

            "To date, hackers have yet to carry out the full chain of attack successfully," the Check Point researchers noted regarding these more recent Exchange Server attacks.

    • Defence/Aggression

      • Boy killed over friendship with girl in Karnataka's Kalaburagi

        The boy’s father, Mallikarjun Kolli, said his son was allegedly forced to drink and smoke ganja, and the assailants murdered him when he was in drunken stupor. “Instead of killing my son, they should have spoken to me if he was not on the right path,” he said.

      • Brussels bombers 'murdered elderly man as a test'

        In June 2018 Krayem then said "Khalid explained it was an elderly person and that they had wanted to test what it was like to kill someone".

        Krayem, a Swedish national, was caught on CCTV with Khalid el-Bakraoui shortly before the metro bomber blew himself up.

      • Desecrated and Defecated on: Churches in Europe under Islam

        A few days after Muslim migrants firebombed an 800-year-old Swedish church twice over the course of four days—once on Jan. 20, 2021 and another on Jan. 24—a Feb 4 report came out saying that 829 “hate crimes” against churches in Sweden have been reported between just 2012-2018, or about 138 attacks on average every year.

      • Military might, market ideology and moral posturing: A toxic combination that has poisoned America

        People who start businesses are now referred to, in all seriousness, as "job creators." The term implies that our attitude toward them should be reverential, as if creating jobs were the purpose of having a business instead of a necessary expense and, as such, to be minimized. Venerated as beneficent "job creators," employers are free to revert openly to exploitative labor practices. Shouldn't workers then be called "wealth creators," wealth being founded quite openly and unabashedly on their exploitation?

      • 'The Stories Are Heartbreaking.' What 1 Reporter Witnessed In Mozambique's Violence

        For more than three years, northern Mozambique has been ravaged by violence and destruction, as a local Islamic insurgency has grown in intensity and brutality. More than 1,300 civilians have been killed, according to one estimate, and some 668,000 have been internally displaced — nearly half of whom are children.

        The violence has been centered in Cabo Delgado, one of the poorest regions in Mozambique. For years, the region was largely ignored by the central government, until large reserves of oil and gas were discovered offshore. As international oil companies have moved into the area, fighters have stepped up their attacks, terrorizing villagers, burning homes, destroying farms and publicly beheading women and children.

      • Deradicalization Program in Indonesia Not Very Effective in Curbing Extremism

        Although Indonesia has set up a deradicalization program to address the growing radicalism among Muslims, it has not been able to prevent the spread of extremism in correctional facilities.

        A recent analysis by researchers from the University of Indonesia shows that one member from a terrorist network like Jamaah Ansharut Daulah (JAD) can recruit, on average, four to five people during the country-run deradicalization program.

      • Islamist Extremists Try to Silence Dutch Author With Death Threats

        But after one particular TV appearance, as one critic wrote, it was “as if a bomb exploded in her parents’ community.” The main problem was her battle with orthodox Islam, with the questioning of a culture in which, as “Büsra” puts it, girls are forced to live “like houseplants” and become “breeding hens” once they are forced into a marriage. “Is this what I live for?” “Büsra” muses. “Is God then happy with my tragedy?”

        Phones rang in the Gül household the day after her appearance on a talk show in early February. Lale’s parents listened, horrified, to friends and relatives explaining to them what their daughter actually had written, how she had exposed their private life to the outer world, and how she had spoken against their faith. Some of what her parents heard was untrue. An uncle threatened “to punch my teeth out of my mouth,” she told the “Volkskrant.” And her mother, Lale says, defended him. “I can’t say he’s wrong,” she says her mother told her. “You asked for it with that book.”

      • Far-Right Bolivia Coup Leader Jeanine Añez Arrested on Terrorism, Sedition Charges

        "The authors and accomplices of the dictatorship that looted the economy and attacked life and democracy in Bolivia" must "be investigated and punished," said Evo Morales, the former president.

      • EU drones: Permanent permit for maritime surveillance

        This year, the EU is again conducting drone flights for many Member States. Due to many unfulfilled requests, unmanned capabilities are now being expanded. Two drones from Austria and Portugal have become established for coastguard missions. One of the manufacturers has now received a Europe-wide certificate for the first time.

      • Opinion | Dear Breonna: One Year Later

        We reflect on her life, her senseless death, and why we will always say her name.

      • A Year After Breonna Taylor's Killing, Family Says There's 'No Accountability'

        Exactly one year ago, Louisville police gunned her down in her home. Now, her name is a ubiquitous rallying cry at protests calling for police reforms, and many social justice advocates point to her story as an example of how difficult it can be to hold police accountable for violent acts.

        The Louisville incident unfolded during a botched narcotics raid, when officers forced their way into her apartment in the early morning hours of March 13, 2020. Taylor was not the target of the raid and the suspect police were searching for was not at Taylor's home.

      • 'Say Her Name': Rallies and Marches Mark One-Year Anniversary of Breonna Taylor's Killing

        "This is not a celebration. This is the anniversary of something that should not have happened."

    • Environment

      • Energy

        • Bitcoin surges past $60,000 for first time

          Critics argue Bitcoin is less of a currency and more of a speculative trading tool that is open to market manipulation.

          There is also concern over its environmental impact, with huge amounts of energy needed to conduct transactions.

        • Bitcoin passes $60,000 for first time

          The system requires massive computer processing power in order to manage and implement transactions.

        • How Bitcoin's vast energy use could burst its bubble

          President Biden's top economic adviser described Bitcoin as "an extremely inefficient way to conduct transactions," saying "the amount of energy consumed in processing those transactions is staggering".

        • Why does Bitcoin need more energy than whole countries?

          Undisputed numbers are hard to come by because of the complex nature of the calculations. Back at the start of 2017, Bitcoin was using 6.6 terawatt-hours of power a year. In October 2020, that was up to 67 terawatt-hours. Now a few months later, it has nearly doubled to 121 terawatt-hours, the Cambridge researchers found, enough to run their entire university for nearly 700 years.

          By these same calculations, if Bitcoin were a country, only 30 other countries would use more electricity. It would surpass the yearly power needs of the UAE, the Netherlands, the Philippines, Belgium, Austria or Israel.

        • [Old] Yellen sounds warning about 'extremely inefficient' bitcoin

          Mining bitcoin requires users to solve complex mathematical equations using high-powered computer setups. The electric consumption used in the process leaves an annual carbon footprint equal to the nation of New Zealand, according to Digiconomist.

      • Wildlife/Nature

        • Gallery: 32-year-old bat found in Estonia

          The Brant's bat, "Tõmmulendlane" in Estonian, has a life expectancy relative to its body size of around twice that of human beings, while the species also holds the record for oldest recorded bat worldwide (at least 41 years of age – ed.). The practice of tagging bats via a ring attached to a limb (see gallery) allows conservationists and others to log ages and life-spans.

    • Finance

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • Malaysia Uses Emergency Powers to Impose 'Fake News' Law

        Lawyers and rights groups say they are alarmed both by the details of the order and by the lack thereof. They say the rules are missing a clear definition of fake news and in effect let authorities ignore the standards for prosecuting an alleged crime set out in the country’s Evidence Act.

        “That means it would be very easy for them to basically charge anyone under this law,” said Ding Jo Ann, an adviser to Malaysia’s Center for Independent Journalism.

        By imposing fines and jail time on anyone who refuses to give passwords or encryption codes to authorities investigating related cases, the ordinance “will create a climate of fear,” Lawyers for Liberty, a local rights group, said in a statement.

        The Bar Council of Malaysia told local news outlet Free Malaysia Today that the ordinance lets authorities ignore several fair trial rules, making it a “highly dangerous piece of legislation which has the potential to be abused.”

    • Civil Rights/Policing

    • Monopolies

      • Patents

        • EPO declares eEQE format went "very smoothly", but do candidates agree?

          Last week the European Qualifying Exams (EQEs) for patent attorneys were held online for the first time. The EPO has now released a statement, declaring the digital EQE a "success". The considerable achievement of getting the eEQE up and running in time for the exams this year should be recognised. However, the EPO's positive summary is at odds with the reported experience of many candidates during the examination week, and has been criticised by some for not being sensitive to candidates' concerns. The EPO's message on the first eEQE also came before the window for candidate feedback had closed.


          However, in this Kat's opinion it is also important for the EPO to acknowledge the issues with the eEQE this year, if they are to avoid the same issues in the future. Comments from candidates (see e.g. DeltaPatents) reveal a great deal of dissatisfaction with the system and how it was run. The EPO's statement does not acknowledge or address these concerns, and downplays the impact of the particular issue in Paper D1.1. It is also apparent that the examination papers (particularly Papers B and C) were even more challenging than usual this year, suggesting that they had not undergone the same scrutiny as in previous years, and included a number of errors (e.g. mis-numbered questions). This Kat will be monitoring developments and looks forward to seeing how the EPO will address these issues.

        • Stanford’s Abstract Idea: A Method for Resolving Haplotype Phase

          This case appears to potential be a good test case on patent eligibility for the U.S. Supreme Court. The Federal Circuit here held that Stanford’s bioinformatics innovation – “a method for resolving haplotype phase” – lacks eligibility under Section 101 because it is directed to an abstract idea under Alice Corp.

          Gene inheritance is a super interesting biologic process. Each person inherits a set of chromosomes from each parent. At times, it is helpful to understand which genes came from which parent — especially if tracing disease patterns or researching various diseases. The problem though is that the chromosomes are not labelled “dad” & “mom” (except potentially the sex linked one).

          The general purpose of the invention is to provide a better method for figuring out which genes are associated with which parent. The approach is to first obtain allele data from the subject as well as three other family members (two parents and a sibling). The claims then use a statistical inference process (Hidden Markov Model) to identify the likely inheritance state. The claims define key parameters of the model (the hidden states). In addition to HMM, the claims also require a series of error-reduction techniques that use population data as well as consideration of sequencing errors. The prior art includes other methods of resolving haplotype phase, and other would-be non-infringing methods have also been developed since then. [Read Claim 1]. Apparently, the prior-art method had ~80% accuracy while the invention here boosts accuracy to ~98% (for heterozygous positions).

        • Software Patents

          • Third time's a harm? Microsoft tries to get twice-rejected compression patent past skeptical examiners

            In June, 2019, Microsoft applied for a US patent covering enhancements to a data encoding method known as rANS, one of several variants in the Asymmetric Numeral System (ANS) family that form the foundation of data compression schemes used by Apple, Facebook, Google, various other companies, and open source projects.

            Its US patent application was published on the last day of 2020. Recently, the inventor of ANS, Jarosław Duda, assistant professor at Institute of Computer Science at Jagiellonian University in Poland, expressed concern that if Microsoft's patent application is granted, anyone using software that incorporates an ANS-based encoder could be at risk of a potential infringement claim.


            "Google ended up abandoning that application," said Alex Moss, staff attorney for the EFF and Mark Cuban Chair to Eliminate Stupid Patents, in an email to The Register. "But it looks like Microsoft picked up right where it left off."

            "Professor Duda’s concerns about the Microsoft application are similarly well-founded: these are broad claims that implicate practically any use of ANS without adding anything new and non-obvious," said Moss.

            The USPTO has already said as much, Moss explained: It has rejected this application twice before, including a final rejection for obviousness.

            The USPTO issued a non-final rejection of the application on May 21, 2020. Microsoft sought a review of the decision and the patent agency then issued a final rejection on October 27, 2020.

            Yet on March 2, 2021, Microsoft tried one more time to get its patent application approved. In a USPTO explanatory filing, attorney Kyle Rinehart said, "The Applicant respectfully disagrees with the rejections."

            "Microsoft’s recent filing takes advantage of what’s called the "After Final Consideration Pilot 2.0" program," Moss explained. "This program was started under former Director of the Patent Office, Andrei Iancu, and before leaving office, he extended the program through September 30, 2021."

      • Copyrights

        • RIAA Takedown Notices Target Spotify, Deezer, and Apple Music

          The RIAA is known to use DMCA notices to remove pirated content from the Internet. These takedown requests are generally aimed at pirate sites and stream-rippers, but in recent weeks the organization went after legitimate streaming services as well. Apparently, Spotify, Deezer, Amazon, Tidal and Apple Music host 'copyright infringing' content too.

        • Men Ordered to Pay 7 Million Euros in Damages For Illegal Sports Streaming

          Five men who administered a ring of 20 pirate sports streaming sites were found guilty of intellectual property offenses by a court in France last summer. After being handed sentences ranging from fines to 12 months in prison, the court has decided that three of the men must now pay Canal Plus, beIN Sports and RMC Sport more than seven million in euros in damages.

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