Links 26/7/2020: GUADEC 2020 and TenFourFox FPR25

Posted in News Roundup at 2:41 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • If Coronavirus Happened in ’90s, Proprietary Software Would’ve Been a Disaster

      She starts the day by opening her Ubuntu-powered laptop, she had an assignment to finish last night, which she did using LibreOffice. Today, there’s a virtual classroom with the teacher, where everyone will be able to easily communicate together using Jitsi, just inside their Firefox web browser. Some educational materials are needed, of course, which she can easily grab from the university’s central LMS (Learning management system), powered by Moodle; A fully free and open source software.

      Fatma, like many university students in her country and also like most students of the world in the age of Coronavirus, found the transition to a more digitalized education very accessible and very hassle-free, thanks to the efforts of open source developers which had been accumulating over each other for the past few decades.

    • Here Is Why Linux Is a Good Choice of OS for Software Developers

      Is there a perfect operating system for software development? According to some, Linux might just be as close as you can get.

      Here we will take a quick look at what Linux has to offer and also suggest some great Linux distros that you might want to check out for yourself.

      Since you’re actually reading this article, chances are you already have an idea of what Linux is. But for the uninitiated, Linux is a type of an operating system just like Windows, iOS, macOS, etc.

      It is a very popular OS. In fact, the Andriod operating system is built on top of the Linux kernel, so you could say that the Linux kernel is the foundation on which Android is built. But Linux also powers many other internet and business servers, including numerous stock exchanges around the world. It has been around since the mid-1990s, give or take, and Linux is literally everywhere today.

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • Jussi Pakkanen: Pinebook Pro longer term usage report

        I originally wanted to use stock Debian but at some point the Panfrost driver broke and the laptop could not start X. Eventually I gave up and switched to the default Manjaro. Its installer does not support an encrypted root file system. A laptop without an encrypted disk is not really usable as a laptop as you can’t take it out of your house.

        The biggest gripe is that everything feels sluggish. Alt-tabbing between Firefox and a terminal takes one second, as does switching between Firefox tabs. As an extreme example switching between channels in Slack takes five to ten seconds. It is unbearably slow. The wifi is not very good, it can’t connect reliably to an access point in the next room (distance of about 5 meters). The wifi behaviour seems to be distro dependent so maybe there are some knobs to twiddle.

        Video playback on browsers is not really nice. Youtube works in the default size, but fullscreen causes a massive frame rate drop. Fullscreen video playback in e.g. VLC is smooth.

        Basic shell operations are sluggish too. I have a ZSH prompt that shows the Git status of the current directory. Entering in a directory that has a Git repo freezes the terminal for several seconds. Basically every time you need to get something from disk that is not already in cache leads to a noticeable delay.

        The screen size and resolution scream for fractional scaling but Manjaro does not seem to provide it. Scale of 1 is a bit too small and 2 is way too big. The screen is matte, which is totally awesome, but unfortunately the colors are a bit muted and for some reason it seems a bit fuzzy. This may be because I have not used a sub-retina level laptop displays in years.

        The trackpad’s motion detector is rubbish at slow speeds. There is a firmware update that makes it better but it’s still not great. According to the forums someone has already reverse engineered the trackpad and created an unofficial firmware that is better. I have not tried it. Manjaro does not provide a way to disable tap-to-click (a.k.a. the stupidest UI misfeature ever invented including the emojibar) which is maddening. This is not a hardware issue, though, as e.g. Debian’s Gnome does provide this functionality. The keyboard is okayish, but sometimes detects keypresses twice, which is also annoying.

        For light development work the setup is almost usable. I wrote a simple 3D model viewer app using Qt Creator and it was surprisingly smooth all round, the 3D drivers worked reliably and so on. Unfortunately invoking the compiler was again sluggish (this was C++, though, so some is expected). Even simple files that compile instantly on x86_64 took seconds to build.

      • System76 Reveals An Open Source PC Surprise For AMD Ryzen Fans

        Pop quiz: Is System76 a Linux distribution developer, a hardware maker, or an open source company? The correct answer is all of the above, but a passion for open source permeates every facet of System76’s business. Speaking of which, if you like what the Pop OS and Thelio PC creator has done with Coreboot recently, you’ll love the tease they just dropped on Twitter.

        “I have seen the light of the great @LisaSu,” writes System76 engineer Jeremy Soller. “Today begins my journey to port coreboot to Matisse and Renoir. See you on the other side!”

        In a word, this is magnificent. But why should you care?

      • On Computers: Always at your service – Linux

        You can run Linux and keep your old operating system at the same time

    • Kernel Space

      • Mount Notification Support Still Coming Together For The Linux Kernel

        David Howells of Red Hat continues striving for great improvements to Linux storage.

        Along with his work on the FSINFO system call for exposing more file-system/VFS/mount information more easily to user-space, as part of that valuable work he’s also been working on mount notification support for the Linux kernel. Finally an efficient and reliable means of finding out about changes to mounts of relevance/interest to your process.

      • Intel “Input Output Manager” Linux Driver Coming For Tiger Lake

        While Intel’s open-source engineers have been working on Tiger Lake enablement for Linux going back roughly a year with many kernel patches spanning the different areas over numerous kernel releases, which aligns with Intel’s ongoing cadence of ensuring good Linux hardware support at launch even for consumer hardware, there have been a few stragglers in the Linux bring-up for Tiger Lake.

        It wasn’t until the current Linux 5.8 cycle that Thunderbolt / USB4 support is in place, rather late compared to much of the Tiger Lake support being in shape since ~5.4 or so, but as is usually the case with most hardware launchers, the newer the kernel will generally mean a better experience with more features and performance.

      • Following Many Patches, Linux 5.9 Finally Switching To HTTPS Links En Masse

        On the mailing lists and browsing various Git “-next” repositories it’s felt like “damn, there are a lot of patches about replacing HTTP links with HTTPS all of a sudden” inside the kernel sources and documentation. Indeed, for Linux 5.9 where applicable HTTP links are being replaced for HTTPS.

        After wondering in passing about all these “replace HTTP with HTTPS” patches in recent weeks and checking the linux-next tree, indeed, there are ~150 patches at the moment on deck for Linux 5.9 that amount to replacing HTTP links within the kernel tree with HTTPS.

      • Zstd-Compressed Linux Kernel Images Look Very Close To Mainline With Great Results

        The work on Zstd’ing the Linux kernel for using this Facebook-developed Zstandard compression algorithm to in turn speed up decompression times when booting Linux kernel images might be mainlined as soon as Linux 5.9.

        Nick Terrell of Facebook on Thursday night sent out the eighth version of these Zstd patches for allowing the Linux kernel image to be compressed with it. Those patches were sent out again as a pull request though there does appear to be some rather trivial code tweaks to make at this point.

    • Instructionals/Technical

    • Games

      • What play button have you been clicking on lately?

        Oh, hey! We didn’t miss the weekend this time. Time for another community chat and giving out your latest recommendations.

        After mentioning last time about my current love affair with the Raspberry Pi 4, that has very much continued. Everything seems to be holding up nicely on it. There’s been plenty of Steam Link game streaming, which has been quite the highlight due to how smoothly it has been working.

        For actual games though, I’m going to take this moment to totally plug CARRION again (see my review) because it’s just wonderfully crafted. I’m now onto my second play-through to see if there are any fun things I missed. Sounds like it’s been quite a successful launch too.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • KDE Plasma 5.20 Bringing this Enormous Feature for Wayland

          The KDE Blog announced this massive feature which is coming to the upcoming KDE Plasma 5.20.

        • Updating Marble’s OSM Data Server

          Recently I wrote about options for getting OSM indoor map data for KDE itinerary’s work-in-progress indoor map feature for train stations and airports. The most flexible option mentioned there was using Marble’s OSM data tiles (which I had slightly misleadingly called “vector tiles”, a term in the OSM world usually referring to a different data format with much more application-specific pre-processing applied). Here’s an update on how this topic has progressed since.


          With a full-scale pre-generation off the table, the obvious alternative would be on-demand generation of requested tiles. For this we can actually take quite some inspiration from how the OSM raster tiles are generated.

          The key elements there are mod_tile, an Apache extension for serving map tiles and managing a cache of those, and Tirex, a map tile generation scheduler. This setup isn’t limited to raster tiles, nor to any specific tile generator.

          OSM’s own statistics show that even on their much much wider used setup high zoom level tiles are only actually needed for a tiny fraction of the world’s surface, so there’s a lot of resources to be saved this way.

          Besides having to write a bit of glue code to interface Marble’s tile generator with Tirex, this however means that the generation of a single tile (or rather a batch of 8×8 tiles, the smallest unit Tirex works with) has to be fast enough for on-demand generation, as well as having a reasonably restrained memory consumption.

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • GNOME-Usage Program Still Striving To Report Per-Program Power Analytics

          Ultimately the likely scenario to be pursued is at least being able to leverage the battery power consumption rate on laptops and utilizing some well-tuned models for being able to provide some extrapolated estimates on power consumption for the different areas and for per-program reporting. Power information on Intel CPUs (and now AMD with the amd_energy driver in Linux 5.8+) is also at least fairly safe to come by these days as well as one of the key inputs. The accuracy though will largely depend upon the user’s hardware and quality of the yet-to-be-generated models.

          Beyond the obvious technical challenges, there are also other obstacles around this process such as data privacy concerns if soliciting power samples from the community for creating these possible models. Long story short, don’t look for GNOME to be providing these per-application power analytics like macOS and Windows in the near term.

          Those interested in finding out more on this effort can see the slide deck from Aditya’s presentation.

        • GUADEC 2020: Intern lightning talks

          Hi, I hope you are all enjoying GUADEC! I am just passing by to let you know that on Monday 27th, 18:00 UTC, we will have our traditional Intern lightning talks where you will get to see our Outreachy and Google Summer of Code interns present their projects.

        • Gaurav Agrawal: GUADEC 2020: Newcomers Workshop

          We are hosting Newcomer’s workshop BOF on Monday 27 Jul 2020, (15:00 → 17:00 UTC) , This is a great place to be at if you are someone who’s looking to explore how to contribute to GNOME. We will be going through the project’s practically and will be sharing you the information that gives you the head-start to your journey at GNOME!

          For yours and our convenience we have prepared a wiki post which helps you go through the initial setup for participating in this workshop, Kindly just go through this and setup your systems as per the instructions.

        • Sriram Ramkrishna: GNOME Extensions BoF – 18:00 UTC July 26, 2020

          We will be having a conversation around extensions and the future of how we will be handling them based on policy, community, and other important factors.

          If you are an extensions writer, then I would urge you to join our BoF to help understand what we will be doing with extensions going forward and also provide feedback. We do not want to do this in a vacuum.

    • Distributions

      • BSD

        • NetBSD Is Making Progress On Benchmarking For Performance/Regression Testing

          That work for automated benchmarking of NetBSD for GSoC 2020 is, of course, being done via the Phoronix Test Suite and Phoromatic. While the Phoronix Test Suite has been running on BSDs for years, my focus has primarily been on FreeBSD and DragonFlyBSD along with their derivatives.

          Student developer Apurva Nandan is working for the NetBSD project on making the Phoronix Test Suite in good shape for NetBSD, which primarily is about porting of existing test profiles to see that they run gracefully on NetBSD. While there are many BSD and Linux test profiles, adapting to NetBSD often comes down to build system differences or external dependencies not being available for different programs currently on NetBSD.

          Apurva last week wrote a GSoC status update on this initiative via the NetBSD blog. Progress is being made on getting more tests up and running on NetBSD. Great to see good progress is being made on getting more tests up and running and have previously let Apurva know already that those NetBSD improvements will be happily accepted upstream once complete.

      • Debian Family

        • Sparky APTus AppCenter

          It is improved APTus, still Yad based, but with HTML technology, and still as small, fast and lightweight as possible.

          Don’t expect it can be comparable to other existing AppCenters, it is not. It is still set of bash scripts wrapped up in Yad, but can be easy modified and enlarged as required.

          The matter of fact is, the development of the application I started with MoroS back in December 2018, and due to problems with Yad’s html dependencies, after a month or so I put it down.
          The second attempt was between December 2019 and January 2020; a newer version of Yad let me build it with the html option, but lack of time didn’t let me finish it again.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Flutter now available for Linux desktop via Ubuntu Snap Store

          A typical designer’s dream is of a single programs structure and language that can be utilized to release production-ready applications on practically every platform under the sun. Ideally, designers ought to have the ability to compose one set of code, and after that release it– with as couple of tweaks as possible– onto mobile (iOS and Android), the desktop (Windows 10, Mac, Linux) and the web.

          The magic word here is, naturally, merging, which a number of business and companies have attempted (keep in mind Windows Mobile?), and lots of still continue to make every effortfor The newest example of work-in-progress is Apple’s choice to present “Apple silicon” (aka ARM processors) in its desktop and laptop computer Macs over the next couple of years.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Web Browsers

        • Mozilla

          • TenFourFox FPR25 available

            TenFourFox Feature Parity Release 25 final is now available for testing (downloads, hashes, release notes). There are no additional changes other than outstanding security updates. Assuming all goes well, it will go live on Monday afternoon/evening Pacific time.

      • Openness/Sharing/Collaboration

        • Globalization: A history of openness

          In my career conducting international business, I traveled to more than 80 countries worldwide. I was always struck by how strongly regions of the world are connected, and I began studying the forces of globalization as a result.

          Several books on this subject were critical to this research. But the one I’d like to highlight here is World 3.0: Global Prosperity and How to Achieve It by Pankaj Ghemawat. This book first taught me how little the global community is connected—but also how far it has come compared to the past. During Prof. Ghemawat’s research, he worked with DHL and ultimately helped develop the DHL Global Connectedness Index, which tracks how well the global community is interacting in four key measurements: trade, investment, telecommunication, and travel/migration. From that work, I developed and delivered a presentation on global connectedness, which stressed that the world should increase its scores on those four measurements of globalization, as they are directly linked to food supply, health, security, pollution, jobs and other global benefits.

      • Programming/Development

        • Project Ranger Status
          We originally intended to start pushing ranger code into trunk shortly 
          after the start of stage 1, but of course.. delays, delays :-)
          So here is the latest status/changes since last fall and our proposed 
          time-line going forward.  I'll do the executive summary here, and more 
          details at each submission stage.
          1) multi-range support - Imminent
          We have moved the representation of our multi-range class  from wide-int 
          to trees, and merged it with the value_range class .  There is now a 
          base class which "recognizes" a 1 sub-range case as a special legacy 
          mode which supports ANTI_RANGE and incorporates the original value_range 
          code.  Multi-range is fully interoperable/compatible with value_range 
          code now and all existing code which uses value_range still operates 
          exactly the same as it did.. its just slightly different under the covers.
          range-ops has been returned to working in multi-range mode again now 
          that its compatible with value_range. Any consumer working with ranges 
          can switch to multi-range by switching to the multi-range API.
          This code is currently going through a complete fedora build, and 
          assuming that passes, Aldy will be submitting it for trunk along with 
          various details and performance results in the coming week or so.
          2)  Ranger - Mid August
          The on-demand ranger has been substantially simplified, with well 
          defined components contained in just a few source files.    It is queued 
          up for trunk submission after the multi-range code goes in..
          Initially, we plan to enable it for a few client passes which we will 
          describe at submission time (mostly the same passes as last years 
          presentation discussed) , along with a VRP pass which will run 
          immediately before EVRP called RVRP.  It uses the same dom-walking 
          infrastructure that EVRP uses, but it still has a lack of relational 
          processing (to be addressed next)
          At submission time I'll provide the details, as well as performance and 
          shortcomings once it has also passed thru a fedora build cycle. This 
          will also include the test suite adjustment strategy.
          3) Equivalency/Relational Processing - Mid September(?)
            Finally, the relation code will come, probably in mid September. The 
          proof of concept oracle prototype looked good, so I'm re-working parts 
          of it for performance in production code.
          Once the relation code is in place, we will work on whatever remaining 
          differences there are between EVRP and the new RVRP pass.
             - with RVRP running immediately before EVRP, we can identify anything 
          EVRP finds of significance that is missed.
             - We can also run RVRP immediately after EVRP  and identify things 
          RVRP gets which EVRP does not.
          We know we get immediate benefit from multiple passes when they are 
          switched to ranger, and we'd like to get that enabled ASAP  allowing the 
          code to be rigorously exercised during the rest of stage 1.
          The RVRP pass will be a work in progress, and it is 100% self contained 
          in one file, simply operating as a ranger client just like the other 
          passes.   If we reach the end of stage 1, and for whatever unforeseen 
          reason RVRP is not performing satisfactorily enough to replace EVRP, we 
          simply turn it off.  If it is operating well enough, then we turn of 
          EVRP.  We can decide towards the end fo the stage.
          Thats a quick synopsis of the current ranger work. Over the next 2 
          months we hope to get all of the components into trunk and available for 
          general use.
          Andrew & Aldy
        • GCC’s New Ranger Infrastructure Aims To Be In Good Shape For GCC 11

          Making waves just over a year ago in the GNU Compiler Collection community was the “Ranger” project for on-demand range generator that’s been worked on for several years at Red Hat. While their goals for GCC 10 didn’t pan out, it’s looking like in the next few months more of the Ranger infrastructure will land and thus putting it in the window for GCC 11.

          Ranger allows for querying range information on-demand for SSA names/variables from within anywhere in the IL with minimal overhead, among other benefits to the compiler internals.

        • Python

        • Shell/Bash/Zsh/Ksh

  • Leftovers

    • Education

      • Street smart: The case for closing streets to cars — and opening them to schools

        Examples of successful street closures abound around the globe. Few cars drive down Broadway in midtown Manhattan these days; not since the street was closed to vehicular traffic and transformed into an open-air plaza lined with tables and benches. Following the World Trade Center attacks, New York barricaded many of the streets in the Financial District, creating a pedestrian corridor that nearly two decades on, has become a vital pedestrian thoroughfare. Now, to alleviate the crowded conditions that public parks are experiencing as sun-starved residents emerge from months of self-quarantine, the city is exploring the possibility of strategically closing cross streets. In Europe, metropolises from Madrid to Milan, Barcelona to Berlin, have all benefitted from closing streets to cars and converting them to other uses. Paris is looking to expand its sidewalks to accommodate social distancing by appropriating more than 70% of its on-street parking spaces.

    • Health/Nutrition

      • The Food Industry Puts Profits Over Public Health Using Big Tobacco’s Playbook

        Public health advocates were winning. City after city was innovating ways to reduce smoking and protect public health between the 1960s and 1970s. As former industry lobbyist Victor Crawford observed, you’d “put out a fire one place, another one would pop up somewhere else.”

      • US Cities Need Masks and Tests, Mr. President, Not Shock Troops

        Trump’s job is to protect public safety. That includes protecting the public health, especially in this time of the dual pandemics of Covid-19 and police brutality.

      • Love, Death and Revolution in a time of Covid-19

        ‘You don’t understandIt is the secret called Poetry that is the most dangerous About my being’– Revolutionary Telegu poet Varavara Rao, 81, battling COVID-19 after being jailed by the Modi govt on what analysts believe are trumped-up charges. Harsha Prabhu takes up the story.

      • As Overdoses Spike During Coronavirus, Treating Addiction in Prisons and Jails Is a Matter of Life and Death

        Medication for addiction treatment saves lives. It’s time we offer it to incarcerated people as a matter of policy.

      • The Ugly Terror of a Fascist Abyss Lurks in the Background of This Pandemic

        There are lessons to be learned regarding how history is reproduced in the present. First, there is the Trump administration’s caging of children on the southern border. Second, there is Trump’s threat to use “dominating force” and unleash the National Guard and police upon demonstrators peacefully resisting police violence against people of color. Third, as Jason Stanley points out, there is Trump’s relentless language of violence designed both to embolden second amendment gun rights activists toward committing violence and to dehumanize certain populations while attempting “to harness the emotion of nostalgia to the central themes of fascist ideology — authoritarianism, hierarchy, purity and struggle.”

      • Local TV stations across the country set to air discredited ‘Plandemic’ researcher’s conspiracy theory about Fauci [iophk: s/Local/Syndicated Sinclair/]

        Local television stations owned by the Sinclair Broadcast Group are set to air a conspiracy theory over the weekend that suggests Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top expert on infectious diseases, was responsible for the creation of the coronavirus.

        The baseless conspiracy theory is set to air on stations across the country in a segment during the program “America This Week” hosted by Eric Bolling. The show, which is posted online before it is broadcast over the weekend, is distributed to Sinclair Broadcast Group’s network of local television stations, one of the largest in the country. A survey by Pew Research Group earlier this year showed that local news was a vital source of information on the coronavirus for many Americans, and more trusted than the media overall.

      • Coronavirus: NHS nurses told ‘lives would be made hell’

        It said staff on the Queen’s Medical Centre ward were not trained properly, faced bullying for raising concerns and denied PPE “as punishment”.

        The trust said the allegations were “very troubling”.

      • Sinclair pulls show where Fauci conspiracy theory is aired

        The Sinclair Broadcast Group said Saturday it is pulling from the air an edition of its “America This Week” program that discusses a conspiracy theory involving Dr. Anthony Fauci and the coronavirus.

        Sinclair spokesman Michael Padovano said Sinclair hopes to add context and other viewpoints and still air the controversial segment on the next week’s edition of “America This Week.”

        Meanwhile, Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, talked in detail in a new podcast about the “serious threats” and hate mail directed his way.

        “America This Week” is hosted by Eric Bolling, a former Fox News Channel personality, and sent to stations Sinclair owns in 81 markets. The show it initially distributed for this weekend’s show featured an interview with Judy Mikovits, maker of the widely discredited “Plandemic” video, and her lawyer, Larry Klayman.

        Mikovits, an anti-vaccine activist, said she believed that Fauci manufactured the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 and shipped it to China. There has been no evidence that the virus was produced in a lab, much less any of Fauci’s involvement.

      • Thousands of families evicted in Sao Paulo amid pandemic

        Jussara de Jesus never thought that her family would live in a shack.

        But work as a hairdresser dried for up after the novel coronavirus hit Brazilian metropolis Sao Paulo. She couldn’t afford $150 a month in rent for the small house where she and her three children lived. Three months ago, they were evicted.

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Apple starts making first flagship iPhone in India

          India was the second-biggest smartphone market in the world in 2019, ahead of the US and second only to China. According to TechCrunch, Apple plans to scale up production in India, which would in turn reduce how much it depends on China, where most of its iPhones are currently made. And while Apple tops the premium smartphone market in India, it has only about a 1 percent share of the total smartphone market there. The iPhone’s price puts it out of reach for many consumers in India.

        • Security

          • Linux-based malware analysis toolkit REMnux 7 released

            REMnux is based on Ubuntu. Created and primarily maintained by Lenny Zeltser, SANS Faculty Fellow and course author, the distro comes with utilities configured out of the box to help reverse engineers save time and get to analyzing malware faster.

            It can be installed as a virtual appliance, set it up as a standalone operating system, or run as a Docker container, instructions being readily available for each choice.

            The new REMnux release has been fully rebuilt and relies on SaltStack to automate the installation and configuration of the software, thus allowing community members to contribute with tools and revisions.

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • Germany’s coronavirus tracing app criticized over warning failures

              Initially, the Bild daily newspaper said users of Samsung and Huawei phones, among others, weren’t sent an alert if they had come into contact with someone infected with COVID-19.

              The issue was confirmed by the Health Ministry, which admitted that some Android operating systems had blocked the app from running in the background in order to save power.

    • Defence/Aggression

    • Transparency/Investigative Reporting

      • The Washington Post settles lawsuit with Nick Sandmann after viral March for Life controversy

        The settlement will allow the newspaper to avoid a lengthy and potentially unpredictable trial.


        CNN settled with Sandmann in January. The terms of that settlement were not disclosed.

      • Washington Post settles $250M suit with Covington teen Nick Sandmann

        The Washington Post on Friday agreed to settle a monster $250 million lawsuit filed by Covington Catholic High School student Nick Sandmann over its botched coverage of his 2019 encounter with a Native American elder.

      • TikTok will block QAnon hashtags but not remove related videos

        TikTok has blocked several hashtags related to the QAnon conspiracy theory, but won’t be removing the videos using the hashtags from its platform, the BBC reported. The video sharing app has blocked the terms “QAnon,” “QAnonTruth” and the related phrase “Out of Shadows,” which are used by QAnon believers.

        But as the BBC reports, the QAnon videos themselves could still appear among TikTok’s For You suggestions or in users’ feeds, even if the hashtags are no longer visible.

    • Environment

      • Energy

        • Coal Power Should Be Relegated to the Ash Heap of History

          The climate emergency demands that we use less energy and that we get what we need from cleaner sources.

        • US Gulf Region Still Struggling 10 Years after BP Oil Spill

          For some, decisions made after the spill inflicted more harm. Adjusting the flow of the Mississippi River to increase the freshwater current to the Mississippi Delta helped prevent some oil from reaching beaches along the Gulf but further disrupted shrimp stocks critical to Louisiana’s seafood industry. An experimental chemical used to disperse oil and keep it off the surface was later determined to have massively increased overall toxicity in Gulf waters.

        • Trump’s Golden Era of Energy Is Turning to Lead

          What a difference a year makes. On July 10, the Financial Times ran an article with a headline that asked, “Is the party finally over for U.S. oil and gas?” And there is no doubt that it has been quite a party for the last decade. At least, for the fracking executives who have enriched themselves while losing hundreds of billions of dollars investors gave them to produce oil and gas. Meanwhile, profits never materialized.

      • Wildlife/Nature

        • Indigenous leader Raoni recovers from illness in Brazil

          Chief Raoni Metuktire, an Indigenous leader who has become a symbol of the fight for Indigenous rights and preservation of the Amazon rainforest in Brazil, has recovered from an illness after being hospitalized for 10 days, a doctor said Saturday.

          Raoni had been taken to a private hospital in Sinop, a city in Mato Grosso state in western Brazil, from his home in the Xingu Indigenous reservation after suffering diarrhea and dehydration, said his great-nephew, Patxon Metuktire. Raoni had tested negative for the new coronavirus.

          “Now I’m healed. I wanted to tell you that disease comes at any time. Think about it and love and respect each other because we don’t know tomorrow. The disease does not warn when it comes,” Raoni, the nearly 90-year-old Kayapó ethnic leader, said at a press conference.

    • Finance

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • Police investigate anti-Semitic tweets by grime artist Wiley

        London’s police are investigating after a stream of anti-Semitic comments were posted on British grime artist Wiley’s social media accounts.

        Twitter banned the rapper for seven days after rants on Friday and Saturday. He was also dropped by his management company after he shared the comments, which called Jews “cowards’’ and “snakes,’’ among other things.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

    • Monopolies

      • House hearing with high-profile tech executives rescheduled for Wednesday

        The hearing in front of the House Judiciary antitrust subcommittee, which was originally scheduled for Monday, will feature testimony from the CEOs of Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google in the panel’s investigation into competition in digital markets, with many lawmakers suggesting the four tech behemoths wield too much power.

        The noon hearing will be the first time Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, Apple’s Tim Cook, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg and Google’s Sundar Pichai will all appear at a hearing together, and it will be Bezos’s first time in front of Congress.

      • Antitrust hearing with CEOs of Facebook, Amazon, Google, and Apple rescheduled to Wednesday

        The House Judiciary antitrust subcommittee is investigating different alleged abuses by each of the four companies: Google’s control of its ad market, Facebook’s acquisitions of WhatsApp and Instagram, Apple’s App Store policies, and Amazon’s treatment of third-party sellers.

      • Trademarks

        • SUBMARINER vs MARINER: when a sailor-themed trademark application meets a watery end

          The Opponent opposed the application on several grounds, the first being the likelihood of confusion between the Application Mark and the Opponent’s Mark. Under Singapore law, the test for assessing likelihood of confusion is the step-by-step approach, whereby the following elements should be determined sequentially:

          (a) Are the respective marks similar (by comparing the visual, aural and conceptual similarities between the marks);

          (b) are the respective goods similar; and

          (c) if steps (a) and (b) are fulfilled, whether there exists a likelihood of confusion on the part of the relevant public.

          Under steps (a) and (b), the assessment is made by comparing the marks without consideration of external factors, such as consumer perception of the marks and the trade channels used to market the goods. Such external factors are only to be considered at step (c).


          The Opponent also claimed that its mark is well known to the public at large in Singapore and that use of the Applicaion Mark would therefore result in a damaging connection with the Opponent being made, or taking unfair advantage of the Opponent’s Mark. The Opponent did not succeed on this claim, because it failed to establish the threshold issue that its mark is well known in Singapore. The Opponent had cited several foreign decisions in support of its arguments but the Registrar did not find these foreign decisions persuasive as the Opponent did not show how these decisions had led to the Opponent’s Mark being well known in Singapore.

          Nevertheless, since the Opponent had succeeded on the other two grounds of opposition, namely likelihood of confusion and passing off, registration of the Application Mark was refused.

          This case highlights two key evidentiary points:

          First, the lack of evidence that the Application Mark has ever been used on its own (as opposed to usage of the mark accompanied by the house brand, in this case “FRANCK MULLER”) can be fatal to a finding that the mark possessed an established reputation.

          Second, submitting foreign decisions will not assist in establishing that a mark is well known, unless it is further demonstrated how the successful use or enforcement overseas has led to the mark being well known in Singapore.

      • Copyrights

        • How ‘Anonymous’ is a Seedbox Provider?

          Seedboxes are quite popular among a subset of avid torrent users. They allow people to outsource the seeding process to an external service, ensuring high download and upload speeds. This also prevents users’ private IP-addresses from showing up in torrent swarms. However, that doesn’t mean they’re always anonymous.

        • What is the Most Dangerous Pirate Content to Download?

          While many users are attracted to the lure of free content, piracy sites that allow user uploads always carry the risk of a download not being what it claims to be. So what are the most dangerous downloads and should people risk them? It’s a question of balances but for the novice, abstinence is the safest all-round solution.

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