Links 17/10/2020: GCC 11 Status Report, FreeBSD 12.2 RC3, Chrome 87 Beta

Posted in News Roundup at 9:36 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Audiocasts/Shows

    • Kernel Space

      • Many Networking Improvements Land In Linux 5.10 – Phoronix

        The big networking pull request has landed in Linux 5.10 Git.

        As with most kernel cycles, Linux 5.10 has a plethora of networking improvements from expanded driver coverage to new core networking features and continuing to advance the likes of (e)BPF.

      • Corsac.net – Echoes: iOS 14 USB tethering broken on Linux: looking for documentation and contact at Apple

        It’s a bit of a long shot, but maybe someone on Planet Debian or elsewhere can help us reach the right people at Apple.

        Starting with iOS 14, something apparently changed on the way USB tethering (also called Personal Hotspot) is set up, which broke it for people using Linux. The driver in use is ipheth, developped in 2009 and included in the Linux kernel in 2010.

      • linux.conf.au 2021 call for sessions and miniconfs [LWN.net]

        The 2021 edition of linux.conf.au will be held online on January 23-25, 2021; the call for proposals has gone out with a relatively tight deadline of November 6. “Our theme is ‘So what’s next?’. We all know we’re living through unprecedented change and uncertain times. How can open source play a role in creating, helping and adapting to this ongoing change? What new developments in software and coding can we look forward to in 2021 and beyond?” Since there is no travel involved, this is a rare opportunity for those who have not normally been able to participate in LCA.

      • XFS Patches For Linux 5.10 Delays The Year 2038 Problem To 2486

        XFS patches for Linux 5.10 submitted by XFS file system maintainer Darrick J. Wong will delay the year 2038 problem for XFS by an additional 448 years. That should be enough to come up with a real long-term solution. The time-stamp patches were submitted as a part of a larger patch-set with a “large pile of new stuff”.


        The code widening the inode time-stamps gives us an additional 448 years to come up with a more long-term solution. It may be of interest that the XFS epoch starts at December 1901, not January 1970 like most other Unix time-stamps.

        Another notable change in the patch-set adds inode btree counts to the allocation groups. That speeds up file system mounting and adds a little more metadata redundancy. There’s also a mention of fixing “some math errors in the realtime allocator” in the patches comments.

        It’s not confirmed that the patches will make it into Linux 5.10, but it seems very likely. The merge window is open and Darrick J. Wong, employed by Oracle, is the XFS maintainer so XFS patches from him are merged as a matter of routine.

      • Graphics Stack

    • Benchmarks

      • How Intel’s Clear Linux Is Competing Against Late-2020 Linux Distributions

        As it’s been a while since running a fresh Linux distribution comparison with Intel’s Clear Linux platform and given all the autumn distribution updates inbound, here is a fresh look at the rolling-release Clear Linux up against a snapshot of Ubuntu 20.10, Fedora Workstation 33 Beta, openSUSE Tumbleweed 20200929, Arch-based Endeavour OS, and Debian Testing from the start of October.

      • Intel Core i7 1165G7 “Tiger Lake” Linux Performance With The Dell XPS 13 9310

        Here are our initial benchmarks of Intel Tiger Lake on Ubuntu Linux via the premium Core i7 1165G7 processor. This also appears to be the first public benchmarks of the new Dell XPS 13 9310 laptop that just-launched as the refreshed XPS notebook for Tiger Lake and with Intel EVO certification.

    • Applications

      • 10 Best Free and Open Source Linux Data Recovery Tools

        Data recovery is the process of retrieving data from corrupted or damaged storage media when it cannot be accessed. The storage media in question will often be a hard disk, but it can also be removable media such as CDs, DVDs, Blu-rays, and USB keys. There are many different reasons why a system administrator may need to use data recovery tools.

        At boot up, mainstream Linux distributions perform routine scans to identify and fix any inconsistencies in the file system. A damaged file system might be caused by the computer not shutting down in an orderly fashion, which can occur say in the event of a power cut. However, such routine scans will not detect hardware failure which might exist for a long period without being noticeable to users. Accesses to bad sectors on the media can make the situation worse, and with further usage as well as the passage of time, the media can eventually become unreadable.

      • Linux Candy: Evolvotron – interactive generative art software – LinuxLinks

        There’s a diverse range of programs included in this series. Programs such as eDEX-UI and Variety are actually highly practical programs. ASCIIQuarium has soothing and relaxing qualities for your desktop. Other programs included in this series (such as lolcat, cacafire) are included purely for their decorative qualities. And then there’s some really fun software that just raises a smile or two.

        Are you looking for an original desktop background? Do you enjoy evolutionary art? Evolvotron is an interactive “generative art” application to evolve images/textures/patterns/animations through an iterative process of random mutation and user-selection driven evolution.

      • Top five Vim plugins for sysadmins

        Last year I wrote the article 5 useful Vim plugins for developers for Opensource.com. This article follows a similar idea but focuses on plugins that make sysadmins more productive, regardless of what scripting, programming language, or frameworks they use. There’s another class of Vim plugins focused on code completion and syntax checking that are intentionally not covered in this article. They will be the topic for another post.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • NumPad Rebooted

        If you use the PageUp key a lot (e.g. accessing shell history) and instead of hitting PageUp you hit NumLock? and then it happens several times? the solution for me was to remap the NumLock key to become another PageUp.

        This is for systems using Udev (which is now part of systemd), and a USB or PS/2 keyboard; I am not sure this is feasible for laptops, since as far as I know, on a laptop keyboard switching the Numpad on/off can be useful, gives you more keys on the already cramped keyboard.

      • How to use the Apache web server to install and configure a website – TechRepublic

        Every so often I find it good to take a step back and go through the basics. It not only helps to ground me as a tech writer, but it helps a lot of people who are just learning the ropes of whatever piece of technology I’m talking about.

        This time it’s all about the Apache web server, a piece of software that’s been around for decades, happily serving up small and large websites without fail. Apache works seamlessly with MySQL, PHP, and a host of other packages, so you can serve up simple static or incredibly dynamic websites.

      • UKUI desktop – SparkyLinux

        A new desktop environment has been implemented into APTus & APTus AppCenter: UKUI


        Installation (Sparky testing):

        sudo apt update
        sudo apt install sparky-desktop-ukui

        or via APTus-> Desktop-> UKUI desktop icon.

      • How to Share USB and Network Devices in VirtualBox – Make Tech Easier

        VirtualBox is a popular virtualization tool that lets you install and test out virtual computer systems on a host operating system. With VirtualBox, users have the ability to use a fully functional system, running the operating system of their choice without having to do the setup on different hardware. However, sharing USB and network devices between the host and guest machine is not as straightforward as it should be. Here are the steps to share USB devices between the host and guest machine in VirtualBox.

      • How to install and use AWStats Web Analytics on CentOS 8

        AWStats is an open-source advanced web analytics tool that generates advanced web, streaming, FTP, or mail server statistics graphically. This tutorial shows how to install AWstats on CentOS 8.

      • Install Apache Solr search platform on CentOS 8

        Apache Solr is an open-source search platform written on Java, it is based on Apache Lucene. In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Apache Solr 8.6.3 on CentOS 8.

      • How to use the Apache web server to install and configure a website – TechRepublic

        Every so often I find it good to take a step back and go through the basics. It not only helps to ground me as a tech writer, but it helps a lot of people who are just learning the ropes of whatever piece of technology I’m talking about.

        This time it’s all about the Apache web server, a piece of software that’s been around for decades, happily serving up small and large websites without fail. Apache works seamlessly with MySQL, PHP, and a host of other packages, so you can serve up simple static or incredibly dynamic websites.

      • How to Install Ubuntu on VirtualBox | MakeUseOf

        Thinking about trying out the latest version of Ubuntu? It looks amazing, boasts a host of updates, features, fixes, and stands out as the most well-known Linux operating system.

      • How To Install Discord on CentOS 8 – idroot

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Discord on CentOS 8. For those of you who didn’t know, Discord is a multiplatform application that supports All-in-one voice and text chat for gamers.

      • How to recover deleted files in Linux with testdisk – TechRepublic

        It’s cybersecurity awareness month. Do you know where your deleted files are? If you’re on a Linux server, those magically vanished files might be quite the elusive little gremlins.

        There are a number of ways files get deleted. You might have accidentally used the rm command or maybe a hacker gained access to your system and deleted any number of files. No matter why or how they vanished, you need them back. What do you do?

      • How to use Material Shell in Gnome on Linux

        Material Shell is a modern desktop interface for the Gnome Desktop environment. It is designed to bring order to your Linux desktop by introducing automatic tiling and superior program management. In this guide, we’ll show you how to install Material Shell and how to use it too.

      • ID3: Fix Your Music Tags – Don’t Just Leave Them Blank – YouTube

        When you acquire your music through various means it’s likely that it won’t have it’s id3 meta data tags set properperly but luckily fixing this is incredibly easy with a tool such as id3. If you don’t fix your music tags it becomes much harder to make effective use of the search tools in your music player.

      • Openstack RDO && KVM Hypervisor: Install KVM with UEFI Guests support on Manjaro KDE 20.1.1

        Attempt to test another Linux distro Manjaro KDE 20.1.1 as Virthost managed via Cockpit Web Console, i.e. deployment and management KVM guests on the recent Manjaro KDE utilizing Web Console . Bare metal platform is Ryzen 7 3700X based with 16 GB RAM and mother board MSI X570 A-PRO ( SVM status enabled )

      • How to install Among Us on a Chromebook with Crossover 20 – the Windows Version

        Today we are looking at how to install Among US on a Chromebook with Crossover 20, Please follow the video/audio guide as a tutorial where we explain the process step by step and use the commands below.

        We created a tutorial in the past, but due to the release of Crossover 20, and Among Us works perfectly in it, we felt that we need to create a revised tutorial.

      • How to Secure Your Website with OpenSSL and SSL Certificates | Linux Journal

        The Internet has become the number one resources for news, information, events, and all things social. As most people know there are many ways to create a website of your own and capture your own piece of the internet to share your stories, ideas, or even things you like with others. When doing so it is important to make sure you stay protected on the internet the same way you would in the real world. There are many steps to take in the real world to stay safe, however, in this article we will be talking about staying secure on the web with an SSL certificate.

        OpenSSL is a command line tool we can use as a type of “bodyguard” for our webservers and applications. It can be used for a variety of things related to HTTPS, generating private keys and CSRs (certificate signing requests), and other examples. This article will break down what OpenSSL is, what it does, and examples on how to use it to keep your website secure. Most online web/domain platforms provide SSL certificates for a fixed yearly price. This method, although it takes a bit of technical knowledge, can save you some money and keep you secure on the web.

      • How to Install Odoo 14 on Ubuntu 20.04 | Linuxize

        Odoo is a popular open-source suite of business apps that help companies to manage and run their business. It includes a wide range of applications such as CRM, e-Commerce, website builder, billing, accounting, manufacturing, warehouse, project management, inventory, and much more, all seamlessly integrated.

        Odoo can be installed in different ways, depending on the use case and available technologies. The easiest and quickest way to install Odoo is by using the official Odoo APT repositories.

        Installing Odoo in a virtual environment, or deploying as a Docker container, gives you more control over the application and allows you to run multiple Odoo instances on the same system.

    • Wine or Emulation

      • Proton 5.13: A Massive Update

        We don’t typically cover every little details of Proton versions released out there, but Valve has just released 5.13 and it’s breaking ground in several ways to warrant some coverage.


        Having key AAA titles work directly via the vanilla Proton is a nice bonus for anyone not interested in tinkering with Proton-GE.

        More importantly, this Proton version provides some early support for video in games. As you probably know, numerous games in Proton typically work fine, gameplay wise, but cannot play videos as expected on Windows. This is often due to different codecs used under the hood, not supported by WINE on Linux…

    • Games

      • NENA is a sweet little puzzle action-adventure where you control a robot with telepathy | GamingOnLinux

        NENA is a new adventure following Botley, a robot that wants more than a life disposing of self-aware robotic boxes.

        At some point in the far future, robotics and AI are so advanced that we had to pass laws to give them full awareness of life and it all seems as terrible as you can imagine. NENA might not look like much but it’s quite a surprising little adventure with some amusing interactions.

        In this short, top-down action-puzzler you start when you’re first turned on, only to be told right away that your only reason for “living” is to put little boxes into a furnace to dispose of them — forever. The problem is, you’re self-aware, you know about the world and the boxes you’re supposed to burn to ashes are also aware. Thankfully, the boxes were programmed to like everything, even pain…

      • Steampunk grid-based dungeon-crawler Vaporum: Lockdown is out for Linux now | GamingOnLinux

        Vaporum: Lockdown is a rather gorgeous steampunk dungeon crawler from Fatbot Games, which serves as a prequel to the original and it’s now supported on Linux.

        In this latest release you follow the story of Ellie Teller, a scientist who is a part of a mysterious research project in the middle of an ocean. After disastrous events, she struggles to survive and escape the tower of Arx Vaporum. While it’s a prequel, the developer noted that it “expands on everything that made the original game good”.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • Krita 4.4 Scores Sizeable Update with Disney’s SeExpr Support

          The digital drawing program Krita scores a sizeable update with its major release Krita 4.4.

          Coming after almost 6 months from the prior release, Krita 4.4 brings sizeable updates, feature additions such as new fill layers, brush options, etc across drawing modules which makes it an even great free and open-source raster graphics editor.

          Let’s take a look at what’s new in Krita 4.4

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • Specify Form-Factors in Your Librem 5 Apps | Adrien Plazas

          While more and more applications are being redesigned to take smartphones like the Librem 5 into account, PureOS still offers lots of desktop applications which are not ready to run on such devices yet.

          As a user you want to know which applications are relevant to install, so PureOS Store will by default only present mobile-ready applications, while still letting you opt-into showing all applications to take full advantage of the Librem 5’s convergeant docked mode. As a user you also want to know which applications are relevant to run at a given time, so Phosh will let you run desktop-only applications only when the phone is docked.

          This requires the applications to provide some information on which form-factors they can handle, if you are an application developer and you want your applications to work as expected on the Librem 5, please provide the relevant information as shown below.

    • Distributions

      • Rescuezilla 2.0 Released: Ubuntu-Based Linux Distro For System Rescue

        Almost four months after the last Rescuezilla 1.0.6 release, its developer Shasheen Ediriweera has now announced a new major version, Rescuezilla 2.0.

        As you know, Rescuezilla is a Ubuntu-based Linux distribution and a fork of the abandoned Redo Backup and Recovery distro for system rescue tasks like backup and recovery.

      • New Releases

        • NuTyX GNU/Linux

          I’m very please to annonce the new NuTyX 12-beta4 testing release. The 64-bit version is a complete new project. They are no plan to release a version 12 of NuTyX in 32 bits.

      • BSD

        • FreeBSD 12.2-RC3 Now Available
          The third RC build of the 12.2-RELEASE release cycle is now available.
          Installation images are available for:
          o 12.2-RC3 amd64 GENERIC
          o 12.2-RC3 i386 GENERIC
          o 12.2-RC3 powerpc GENERIC
          o 12.2-RC3 powerpc64 GENERIC64
          o 12.2-RC3 powerpcspe MPC85XXSPE
          o 12.2-RC3 sparc64 GENERIC
          o 12.2-RC3 armv6 RPI-B
          o 12.2-RC3 armv7 BANANAPI
          o 12.2-RC3 armv7 CUBIEBOARD
          o 12.2-RC3 armv7 CUBIEBOARD2
          o 12.2-RC3 armv7 CUBOX-HUMMINGBOARD
          o 12.2-RC3 armv7 RPI2
          o 12.2-RC3 armv7 WANDBOARD
          o 12.2-RC3 armv7 GENERICSD
          o 12.2-RC3 aarch64 GENERIC
          o 12.2-RC3 aarch64 RPI3
          o 12.2-RC3 aarch64 PINE64
          o 12.2-RC3 aarch64 PINE64-LTS
          Note regarding arm SD card images: For convenience for those without
          console access to the system, a freebsd user with a password of
          freebsd is available by default for ssh(1) access.  Additionally,
          the root user password is set to root.  It is strongly recommended
          to change the password for both users after gaining access to the
          Installer images and memory stick images are available here:
          The image checksums follow at the end of this e-mail.
          If you notice problems you can report them through the Bugzilla PR
          system or on the -stable mailing list.
          If you would like to use SVN to do a source based update of an existing
          system, use the "releng/12.2" branch.
          A summary of changes since 12.2-RC2 includes:
          o Report what console the boot loader is telling the kernel to use and
            allow toggling between them.
          o Allow slow USB devices to be given more time to return their USB
          o Allow using zstd and encryption in the loader.
          A list of changes since 12.1-RELEASE is available in the releng/12.2
          release notes:
          Please note, the release notes page is not yet complete, and will be
          updated on an ongoing basis as the 12.2-RELEASE cycle progresses.
      • Screenshots/Screencasts

      • SUSE/OpenSUSE

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • Let’s collaborate! Take the 2020 Red Hat OpenShift Developer Survey now – Red Hat Developer

          We are always looking for ways to understand better how developers create, build, manage, test, and deploy applications on and for Red Hat OpenShift. An important part of that effort is the annual OpenShift Developer Survey, which we’ve just released for 2020.

          Keep reading to learn more about the survey, including highlights of the 2019 survey results and what to expect from the survey this year. We also invite you to participate in our OpenShift developer experience office hours and one-to-one feedback sessions for our developer community and customers.

        • Set up ZFS on Linux with yum | Opensource.com

          I am a Fedora Linux user who runs yum upgrade daily. While this habit enables me to run all the latest software (one of Fedora’s four foundations is “first,” and it lives up to that), it also highlights any incompatibilities between the ZFS storage platform and a new kernel.

        • What is an open source upstream?

          Within information technology, the term upstream (and related term “downstream”) refers to the flow of data. An upstream in open source is the source repository and project where contributions happen and releases are made. The contributions flow from upstream to downstream.

          When talking about an upstream, it’s usually the precursor to other projects and products. One of the best-known examples is the Linux kernel, which is an upstream project for many Linux distributions. Distributors like Red Hat take the unmodified (often referred to as “vanilla”) kernel source and then add patches, add an opinionated configuration, and build the kernel with the options they want to offer their users.

          In some cases, users get releases or code directly from the upstream. Windows and macOS users who run Firefox, as one example, generally get their software releases directly from Mozilla rather than through a third party. Linux users, on the other hand, often get Firefox packaged for their distribution –and usually with a few changes in the release’s configuration to better integrate Firefox to their desktop environment or otherwise be more suitable for the distribution.

          In some cases, a project or product might have more than one upstream. Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) releases are based on Fedora Linux releases. The Fedora Project, in turn, pulls from many upstream projects to create Fedora Linux, like the Linux kernel, GNOME, systemd, Podman, various GNU utilities and projects, the Wayland and X.org display servers, and many more.

          The Fedora Project releases a new version of Fedora roughly every six months. Periodically, Red Hat will take a Fedora Linux release and base a RHEL release on that. Rather than starting from scratch with the vanilla sources for the Linux kernel, GNOME, systemd, and the rest Red Hat starts with the Fedora sources for these projects and utilities, which makes Fedora an upstream of RHEL–with a further upstream of the originating projects. Fedora is downstream of these projects and RHEL is downstream of Fedora.

        • Resiliency in Banking : A ‘must have’ for continuity in the new reality (Part 1)

          A degree of digital transformation has occurred in the banking industry, yet it appears that there will never be a resting point. The establishment of a “new normal”, where responsiveness to external competitive demands, global events, and customer expectations highlights the need for continued resilience. The pace of technology changes and competition from traditional and new players overlaid with the consumerization of banking services, has led to expansion in the breadth of services offered, along with how and when they can be consumed.

          Social distancing has prompted new realities in banking, with some aversion to access physical branch locations and interface through ATMs (with people reluctant to touch the machine and cash itself). Regardless of these challenges, the customer still demands uncompromised and enhanced capabilities, perceiving that services are always available and instantaneous.

          Customers have an expectation of 24/7 access, and with devices of their own, are independent of location. Correspondingly, while still necessary in some instances, the decline of visits to branch locations has been supplanted by the digital experience – particularly in mobile – making the support and execution of this channel the primary driver of customer satisfaction and usage.

          This transformation has placed organizations under greater pressure than ever to deliver higher-quality applications more often, to scale digital business – all while adhering to security and compliance regulations – exposing internal gaps in both engagement and integration capabilities. Furthermore, the emergence and adoption of remote work, coupled with increased digital banking, extends the security risk surface area and potential exposure to nefarious activity.

          A faster, more agile, secure, and scalable implementation approach involving automation is crucial to creating frictionless experiences that can be more easily deployed, updated, and maintained–helping achieve the business priorities that are needed, and ones that customers demand.

        • Call for Code Regional Winner Europe: TheHeroLoop

          TheHeroLoop is the regional winner of the 2020 Call for Code Challenge in Europe. The team will receive $10K and solution deployment support to make their solution available to everyone.

        • Join the space debate: A space race is good for humanity

          As the Distinguished Engineer and CTO for Space Tech at IBM, I think about space a lot, as we enter the new space age. And I don’t think I’m alone in my thoughts. Space innovation and exploration has always been inspiring for humanity. From the time most of us were kids, we’ve asked questions about space: “Are we alone in this universe? Are there other habitable planets in our galaxy? How can we send probes to deep space? How do we get to Mars?”

          The need to answer these questions – and more—is driving innovation in the space industry in new and exciting ways. This year alone we’ve seen vast activities in the space industry all the way from launching mega constellations in space to providing broad band connectivity, to the first private crewed spacecraft to reach the ISS and three different nations launching probes and rovers’ missions to Mars. My team even open sourced two new projects – Space Situational Awareness and Kubesat – to take on some of the issues facing space exploration. This rapid expansion of the private commercial companies, public-private partnerships and advancements in technology are defining a new landscape of the coming space era.

        • systemd-resolved: introduction to split DNS

          Fedora 33 switches the default DNS resolver to systemd-resolved. In simple terms, this means that systemd-resolved will run as a daemon. All programs wanting to translate domain names to network addresses will talk to it. This replaces the current default lookup mechanism where each program individually talks to remote servers and there is no shared cache.

          If necessary, systemd-resolved will contact remote DNS servers. systemd-resolved is a “stub resolver”—it doesn’t resolve all names itself (by starting at the root of the DNS hierarchy and going down label by label), but forwards the queries to a remote server.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Lightweight Kubernetes Pushes Orchestrator to the Edge

          Kubernetes, the evolving cluster orchestrator, has gone on a diet, stepping off the scales as a lightweight, resilient clustering tool that switches to autopilot once three or more nodes are clustered.

          The slimmed-down version dubbed MicroK8s automatically migrates stored data between nodes to maintain a “quorum” in the event of a production failure, Canonical said this week in unveiling the micro-version of Kubernetes. The Ubuntu OS publisher aims MicroK8 at production workloads increasingly running in cloud and server deployments.

          Given the complexities of deploying Kubernetes in production, Canonical is stressing its lightweight version as a “zero-ops” alternative for maintaining cloud-based microservices and micro datacenters used for edge computing applications.

        • Not perfect, but close.

          I installed Ultimate Edition 6.7 Developer now twice. I am thinking my daily driver, I am a developer. This is a LTS (Long Term Supported) release, I will let you know I have re-built it. I want you to enjoy it with me if you are a developer. A common user, I do not suggest it. You will find very few games, yes there are a few. Heavily strewn with applications to develop. We will move forward. I like to think of this as my base.

          I do have a tighter one coming: 2098167 extents written (4,097 MB), let me do my job. I canceled it.
          19% 818MB 227.6KB/s 4:12:52 ETA I won’t deal with that, uploading to our servers. 13 minutes v/s 4 hours… Once on our servers I can pass it around in a minute, multiple servers. 1% 65MB 1.1MB/s 1:04:47 ETA Should have left it alone. Sourceforge Hammered? Something new drop today? My internet is faster then SourceForge today.

    • Devices/Embedded

      • PineCube open-source Linux IP camera devkit launched for $30

        Pine64 has been a busy company/community with the launch of Linux powered Arm development boards, PinePhone smartphone, PineTab tablet, and Pinebook Pro laptop in the last two years.

        They also had other smaller projects that got fewer resources due to the launch of the aforementioned products and COVID-19 induced delays, and one of those is PineCube open-source IP camera development kit that finally launched for $29.99 plus shipping.

      • Linux-Based PinePhone To Bring Wireless Charging, NFC, And Keyboard

        PinePhone project has already stated its plan to add functionality to the phone via custom back-covers that will communicate with the phone via pogo pins. Sticking to their statement, the team is ready to bring the first two covers that will introduce wireless charging and NFC (Near-Field-Communication) to the PinePhone.

        Wireless charging, which will use the Qi open interface standard, is already working but still needs some work on the coil and electronics to fit into the current cover design. While NFC implementation requires software enablement.

      • Raspberry Pi Gets 5G Cellular Connectivity with Snapdragon X55 Powered HAT

        The Raspberry Pi board has long been able to connect to cellular networks either via USB dongles or 3G or 4G LTE HATs that often include GPS as a bonus.

        But you can now connect your Raspberry Pi 4 or other RPI SBC with a 40-pin header to 5G networks thanks to Waveshare SIM8200EA-M2 5G HAT for Raspberry Pi powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon X55 multi-mode multi-band modem offering 5G/4G/3G cellular connectivity.

      • Jetson Nano Robot | Hackaday

        [Stevej52] likes to build things you can’t buy, and this Jetson Nano robot falls well within that category. Reading the project details, you might think [Stevej52] drinks too much coffee. But we think he is just excited to have successfully pulled off the Herculean task of integrating over a dozen hardware and software modules. Very briefly, he is running Ubuntu and ROS on the PC and Nano. It is all tied together with Python code, and is using Modbus over IP to solve a problem getting joystick data to the Nano. We like it when existing, standard protocols can be used because it frees the designer to focus more on the application. Modbus has been around for 40 years, has widespread support in many languages and platforms.

      • Ryzen Embedded module delivers 32GB RAM and quad displays

        Ibase’s “ET977” is a COM Express Basic Type 6 module that runs Ubuntu or Win 10 on a Ryzen Embedded V1000 or R1000 with up to 32GB DDR4 and up to quad display support plus GbE, PCIe x8, and a USB 3.1 Gen2 interface.

        In July 2019, Ibase announced an ET976 COM Express Basic Type 6 module with AMD’s Ryzen Embedded V1000. Now it has returned with a more advanced ET977 Basic Type 6 entry that adds support for the Ryzen Embedded R1000. Other recent Ibase products based on Ryzen Embedded include the 3.5-inch IB918 SBC and a fanless, embedded ASB200-918 computer based on it.


        Although the manual lists only Windows 10, the announcement says the module also supports Ubuntu.

      • Elkhart Lake modules include headless, 4.5W model with SIL2 FuSa

        Eurotech’s Linux-ready “CPU-161-19” and “CPU-161-20” Compact Type 6 modules offer RE and FE variants of the Atom x6000, respectively, with up to 3x 2.5GbE controllers. The industrial FE models add SIL2-enabled Functional Safety.

      • Open Hardware/Modding

        • Arduino Blog » This LED coffee table reacts to whatever’s on top

          The YouTube team “Ty and Gig Builds” recently decided to make their coffee table a little more interesting, adding a chain of 96 addressable LEDs underneath its clear surface. This would have been neat enough by itself, but their project doesn’t just stop there and instead embeds 154 IR emitters and 154 IR receivers, allowing it to react to what’s on top. Beyond that, it’s able to display animations without using the sensors for a mesmerizing effect.

          The setup, as you might imagine, required a lot of wiring along with custom shift register and multiplexer boards to accommodate its vast I/O needs. These discrete I/O are eventually funneled down to an Arduino Mega for control, creating a one-of-a-kind table that should make for a great conversation piece while holding coffee and other knickknacks.

        • ESP32 CNC Controller Board Supports Grbl Arduino Firmware

          Grbl_ESP32 CNC development board is a breakout board for NodeMCU 32S board that also takes three stepper motor drivers, and designed to run Grbl open-source Arduino firmware to control wireless CNC machines. Grbl_ESP32 CNC breakout board specifications: Socket for NodeMCU 32S board with ESP32 WiFi and Bluetooth dual-core SoC 3 sockets for stepper motor drivers such as TI DRV8825 types and others.

      • Mobile Systems/Mobile Applications

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Ventoy 1.0.23 – Neowin

        Ventoy is an open source tool to create bootable USB drive for ISO/WIM/IMG/VHD(x)/EFI files. With Ventoy, you don’t need to format the disk over and over, you just need to copy the ISO/WIM/IMG/VHD(x)EFI files to the USB drive and boot them directly. You can copy many files at a time and ventoy will give you a boot menu to select them. Both Legacy BIOS and UEFI are supported in the same way. Most type of OS supported (Windows/WinPE/Linux/Unix/Vmware/Xen…)

      • Web Browsers

      • Productivity Software/LibreOffice/Calligra

      • FSF

        • GNU Projects

          • GCC 11.0.0 Status Report (2020-10-16), Stage 1 ends Nov 15th
            GCC trunk which eventually will become GCC 11 is still open for general
            development.  Stage 1 will end on the end of Sunday, Nov 15th 2020
            at which point we will transition into Stage 3 which allows for general
            We have accumulated quite a number of regressions, a lot of the
            untriaged and eventually stale.  Please help in cleaning up.
            Quality Data
            Priority          #   Change from last report
            --------        ---   -----------------------
            P1               33   +  33
            P2              256   +  35
            P3               74   +  47
            P4		185   +  12
            P5		 24   +   2
            --------        ---   -----------------------
            Total P1-P3     363   + 121
            Total		572   + 135
            Previous Report
          • GCC 11 Will Be Set In Stone On November 15th

            Developer Richard Biener has announced that next major version of the GNU Compiler Collection will enter a feature-freeze on November 15th. There’s currently a total of 572 regressions in GCC 11 that need to be fixed before the final version is released April/May 2021.

          • GCC 11 Ending Feature Development In One Month

            The GNU Compiler Collection 11 (GCC 11) will be ending stage one development in mid-November to get the release process underway.

            SUSE’s Richard Biener issued the first GCC 11.0 status report and indicated that stage one development will end on 15 November. This stage of development is for the generic development of this next major GCC release and where all new feature code changes are allowed.

          • GNU MIX Development Kit – News: GNU MDK 1.2.11 released [Savannah]

            A new bug fix release. Happy hacking!

          • vc-dwim – News: vc-dwim-1.10 released [stable] [Savannah]
            It's been nearly a year, so here's a new release.
            Thanks to Karl Berry for making nearly all of the nontrivial changes.
            Here are the compressed sources and a GPG detached signature[*]:
            Use a mirror for higher download bandwidth:
            [*] Use a .sig file to verify that the corresponding file (without the
            .sig suffix) is intact.  First, be sure to download both the .sig file
            and the corresponding tarball.  Then, run a command like this:
              gpg --verify vc-dwim-1.10.tar.xz.sig
            If that command fails because you don't have the required public key,
            then run this command to import it:
              gpg --keyserver keys.gnupg.net --recv-keys 7FD9FCCB000BEEEE
            and rerun the 'gpg --verify' command.
            This release was bootstrapped with the following tools:
              Autoconf 2.69c
              Automake 1.16b
              Gnulib v0.1-3952-g8bc21357b
            * Noteworthy changes in release 1.10 (2020-10-15) [stable]
            ** Changes in behavior
              vc-dwim now requires a one-line summary
            ** New features
              --debug is much more verbose, and implies --verbose.
        • Licensing/Legal

      • Programming/Development

        • Stupid RCU Tricks: Torturing RCU Fundamentally, Part II – Paul E. McKenney’s Journal — LiveJournal

          Further reading of the Linux-kernel Documentation/RCU/Design/Requirements/Requirements.rst file encounters RCU’s publish/subscribe guarantee. This guarantee ensures that RCU readers that traverse a newly inserted element of an RCU-protected data structure never see pre-initialization garbage in that element. In CONFIG_PREEMPT_NONE=y kernels, this guarantee combined with the grace-period guarantee permits RCU readers to traverse RCU-protected data structures using exactly the same sequence of instructions that would be used if these data structures were immutable. As always, free is a very good price!

          However, some care is required to make use of this publish-subscribe guarantee. When inserting a new element, updaters must take care to first initialize everything that RCU readers might access and only then use an RCU primitive to carry out the insertion. Such primitives include rcu_assign_pointer() and list_add_rcu(), but please see The RCU API, 2019 edition or the Linux-kernel source code for the full list.

        • Perl/Raku

        • Python

  • Leftovers

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Vinchin Backup & Recovery is now tested and supported with Oracle Linux Virtualization Manager

          Oracle is pleased to announce that Vinchin, a provider of data protection solutions for enterprises, has tested and will support customers running its Backup & Recovery solution with Oracle Linux KVM and Oracle Linux Virtualization Manager. This means that you can easily and efficiently backup and restore virtual machines running on Oracle Linux Virtualization Manager with Vinchin Backup & Recovery. Vinchin offers a modern and secure IT infrastructure solution that delivers high availability and scalability to drive transformative business outcomes for customers.

          Oracle Linux Virtualization Manager is a server virtualization management platform based on the oVirt open-source project. It can be easily deployed to configure, monitor, and manage an Oracle Linux Kernel-based Virtual Machine (KVM) environment with support from Oracle. Vinchin has provided its oVirt-based backup solution for several years and has customers throughout China, Europe and the Americas. Vinchin now supports its reliable backup and disaster recovery solution for customers running Oracle Linux KVM and Oracle Linux Virtualization Manager.

        • Pseudo-Open Source

          • Openwashing

            • Even 2020 cannot bring forth the Year of Linux on the Desktop [Ed: Entertaining Microsoft moles in El Reg, with lots of lies and loaded statements]

              Microsoft MVP and Canonical engineer manager Hayden Barnes has upended the scorn bucket over the dreams of open sourcers that Windows might end up as an emulation layer atop Linux.

        • Security

          • Microsoft Fixes RCE Flaws in Out-of-Band Windows Update

            The two important-severity flaws in Microsoft Windows Codecs Library and Visual Studio Code could enable remote code execution.

            Microsoft has issued out-of-band patches for two “important” severity vulnerabilities, which if exploited could allow for remote code execution.

            One flaw (CVE-2020-17023) exists in Microsoft’s Visual Studio Code is a free source-code editor made by Microsoft for Windows, Linux and macOS. The other (CVE-2020-17022) is in the Microsoft Windows Codecs Library; the codecs module provides stream and file interfaces for transcoding data in Windows programs.

          • Security updates for Friday

            Security updates have been issued by Fedora (dnf, kernel, libdnf, python27, and python34), SUSE (blktrace, crmsh, php7, and php72), and Ubuntu (containerd, docker.io, firefox, htmlunit, and newsbeuter).

          • Bluetooth flaw in Linux kernel allows nearby hackers to execute code

            Google engineer Andy Nguyen is reporting via a Twitter thread that a new security vulnerability has been found in Linux operating systems that run a Bluetooth software stack called BlueZ. Nguyen has named the vulnerability BleedingTooth and claims in his Twitter post that the vulnerability allows nearby hackers to conduct zero-click root-level code execution.

            Linux is an operating system very similar to Unix—it became popular over a decade ago as a research and educational tool due to its open-source licensing and zero cost. In more recent years, it has been used to create dedicated applications—NASA uses it for many of its space applications, for example. It has also become popular for companies making Internet-of-Things (IoT) devices because it allows them to avoid royalty fees.

          • Google Warns of Zero-Click Bluetooth Flaws in Linux-based Devices

            Google security researchers are warning of a new set of zero-click vulnerabilities in the Linux Bluetooth software stack that can allow a nearby unauthenticated, remote attacker to execute arbitrary code with kernel privileges on vulnerable devices.

            According to security engineer Andy Nguyen, the three flaws — collectively called BleedingTooth — reside in the open-source BlueZ protocol stack that offers support for many of the core Bluetooth layers and protocols for Linux-based systems such as laptops and IoT devices.

          • An Uncommon 20 Years of Commonly Enumerating Vulns
          • This nasty botnet could being rented out as a proxy service | TechRadar

            Cybercriminals set up and use botnets to carry out DDoS attacks, steal data and send spam but now researchers from Bitdefender have found signs that the Interplanetary Storm botnet could be potentially be used for something else entirely.

            Interplanetary Storm (IPStorm) was first discovered by researchers from the cybersecurity firm Anomali in June of last year. However, Bitdefender came upon a new campaign using the botnet when it attacked the company’s SSH honeypots in May of this year.

            The malware has continued to evolve since then as its creators have integrated new features in an attempt to try to hid its activities with innocuous traffic. IPStorm’s capabilities include being able to backdoor a device running shell commands and generating malicious traffic by scanning the internet and infecting other devices.

          • NPM nukes NodeJS malware opening Windows, Linux reverse shells

            NPM has removed multiple packages hosted on its repository this week that established connection to remote servers and exfiltrated user data.

            These 4 packages had collected over 1,000 total downloads over the course of the last few months up until being removed by NPM yesterday.

    • Defence/Aggression

      • Courts inconsistent on domestic violence cases during pandemic, study suggests

        After months of abuse at the hands of her former partner, Amber Solberg looked forward to the day she could confront him in court.

        But the opportunity never came as the case against was concluded behind closed doors because of COVID-19 restrictions.

        “I wanted to be able to face him one more time, without me being in the position I was in, without him having all of the control,” Solberg told CBC News.

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

    • Monopolies

      • App Store Battlemap: all antitrust investigations and complaints targeting Apple’s App Store and Google Play from around the globe in one chart

        Battlemaps are a signature element of this blog. Ten years ago I created a number of them to visualize the smartphone patent disputes between the likes of Microsoft, Apple, Google’s Motorola, HTC, and Samsung. Two years ago to the day I published a new one featuring Apple, Huawei, Intel, Qualcomm, and Samsung. And now I proudly present what is–unless I missed something–the first chart to show the global app distribution antitrust landscape–all players and all cases–as a one-pager…

      • Patents

        • Mylan injunction provides new weapon against ‘patent abuse’

          Mylan’s injunction against Teva gives generics companies a new tool to combat last-minute revocations of parent patents at the EPO

        • Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2020 Winners from a Patent Perspective [Ed: Using or misusing Nobel for misleading and rather extremists patent agenda]

          Further to my recent article about the 2020 Nobel Prize announcements, the winners of the 2020 Chemistry Nobel Prize were announced as Emmanuelle Charpentier and Jennifer Doudna on 7 October 2020 “for the development of a method for genome editing”. This, of course, refers to the revolutionary “genetic scissors” technology, CRISPR/Cas9. For this article, I’ve teamed up with my colleague Jamie Atkins, whose specialisms include prosecution of CRISPR-related patent applications at the EPO, to get into the details of the winning technology.

        • VBL Therapeutics Announces Additional New European Patent in the MOSPD2 Platform Technology, This Time for Treatment of Cancer
        • FOSS Patents: Nokia’s latest standard-essential patent licensing offer to automotive suppliers is too little, too late to obviate referral of key questions to CJEU

          Earlier this year, Nokia made mediation talks with Daimler and various of its suppliers of telecommunications components fail by refusing to grant exhaustive component-level standard-essential patent (SEP) licenses that would have provided suppliers with the operational freedom they need in order to go about their business. This was not only a disappointment but also a major embarrassment for the European Commission, which continues to be driven by regional protectionism rather than consistent enforcement of competition law and had urged the parties to negotiate even though it was a total waste of time, as anyone knowledgeable about the issues would have predicted.

          Roughly eight months later, I have to grant Nokia and its attorneys that they have made some limited adjustments to their position, and that fact appears attributable to last month’s Dusseldorf trial more so than to anything the EU Commission has done. Some key players in Brussels are beholden to Nokia, even to the extent that postfactual commissioner Thierry Breton parrots some outdated Nokia-funded propaganda by making an incorrect claim (of Europe being the #1 continent in 5G SEP ownership) from which Nokia’s lawyers had already distanced themselves by way of an updated study.

        • Cert Granted in Arthrex Case On PTAB Appointments

          This week, the Supreme Court granted certiorari in a set of related cases between Arthrex and Smith & Nephew, as well as the federal government. The cases revolve around one fundamental question: are judges of the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) principal officers of the United States? That question controls the constitutionality of their appointment. A principal officer must be appointed with the advice and consent of the Senate; an inferior officer’s appointment can be delegated to a department head. PTAB judges are appointed by the Secretary of Commerce, not via advice and consent, meaning that they are only properly appointed if they are inferior officers.

          While this case focuses on PTAB judges, it seems likely that the Court took it to more broadly explain the distinction between inferior and principal officers, a distinction likely to have impacts throughout the federal government.


          The Court granted certiorari on two questions—whether the judges of the PTAB are principal officers, and whether, assuming they are principal officers, the Federal Circuit’s remedy of severing civil service protections properly cured the defect. (The Court passed on the third proposed question regarding whether the issue was waived.)

          Much like previous major PTAB cases such as SAS and Oil States, this case is likely to attract a significant amount of attention from a wide range of amici. And concerns raised in Cuozzo and Oil States about panel selection “shenanigans” a Director could employ might come back to suggest that the Director does in fact have sufficient ability to control the outcome of cases and thus that PTAB judges are inferior officers.

          At the end of the day, I think that the Court will find that PTAB judges are inferior officers based on the Director’s significant direct and indirect abilities to control their work. But if the Court reaches the opposite conclusion, I expect that Congress will act to fix the issue. The only question is whether the sponsors would allow a bill that cleanly fixes the issue to be amended to include the bad ideas that opponents of the PTAB have been trying to push for years.

        • AI and the fight for inventorship – DABUS patent knocked out in UK High Court

          The UK High Court is the latest authority in the ring to referee Dr Stephen Thaler’s endeavour to have his artificial intelligence, creativity machine – DABUS or Device for the Autonomous Bootstrapping of Unified Sentience – recognised as an inventor of patents. In a High Court decision in Thaler v Comptroller-General of Patents, Designs and Trade Marks [2020] EWHC 2412 (Pat) on 21 September, Michael Smith J agreed with the conclusions of the Comptroller of the UK Intellectual Property Office (UKIPO) and rejected Dr Thaler’s application to patent two inventions conceived by DABUS.

          Back in the autumn of 2018, Dr Thaler filed two patent applications (for more details see here and here). They were rejected by the UKIPO on the grounds that, firstly, a machine did not meet the requirements of inventorship of the Patents Act 1977 (i.e. an inventor must be a natural person) and, secondly, Dr Thaler never acquired the right of grant to the patents from DABUS because DABUS was neither a person, nor an inventor, and so could not own or transfer any rights.

          Dr Thaler’s appeal against the UKIPO decision was propped up by three lines of argument: (1) the UKIPO had prejudged its findings because of its published guidance in the Formalities Manual; (2) the UKIPO had misdirected itself in construing the Patents Act 1977; and (3) section 13 of the same act had been used, broadly speaking, as an illegitimate means of denying Dr Thaler a right he would otherwise have (the right of grant to a patent).

        • This week in IP: generics celebrate new injunction, Tillis questions Barrett, UPC progresses in Germany [Ed: “Only 35 parliamentarians were present at the time,” it says, but it became even worse]

          Last week, on October 8, the German parliament referred the Unified Patent Court Agreement to its parliamentary committees for discussion, paving the way for re-ratification after the Federal Constitutional Court struck down the bill’s previous ratification earlier this year.

          A second decisive reading in the Bundestag is expected later this month or early in November. If all goes well, UPC ratification should go through parliament during the discussion on the 2021 budget, which a large number of members of parliament are guaranteed to attend.

          The UPCA’s first ratification was declared to be invalid by Justice Peter Huber. He broke the news to Managing IP last year that he would decide the UPC case in early 2020, because it wasn’t approved by the requisite two-thirds majority of the members of the Bundestag in 2017.

          Only 35 parliamentarians were present at the time.

          That ruling was held up for more than two years by a constitutional challenge, filed by Düsseldorf IP lawyer Ingve Stjerna in 2017. Should the UPCA be ratified again, another constitutional challenged is expected to swiftly follow.

      • Trademarks

Links 16/10/2020: KD Reports 1.8.2 and Proton 5.13-1

Posted in News Roundup at 12:16 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • I Switched to Linux After Using Windows for 10 Years

        In fact, If there is no operating system (OS) installed the computer becomes a worthless device because the operating system is the intermediate interface that connects the user to the hardware and vice versa. People choose operating systems according to their preferences and what they do. Besides, some people had to go with an operating system that is given by their preferred hardware device (Apple computers come with macOS).

        My first computer was a Pentium II one and it had Windows 98 installed when I purchased it in 2008. Thereafter, I used Windows 2000 for several months. Like most die-hard Windows fans, I used Windows XP and 7 for a long time. Before I completely switched to Ubuntu, my favorite OS was Windows 10. As everybody says, freedom is a key factor that leads us to choose a Linux distribution instead of a proprietary operating system. But, Windows was okay for me until they patch the graphical user interface (GUI) for Windows 7. I switched to Linux mostly due to the following key factors.

      • Dell Ubuntu, Lenovo Fedora, And Slimbook Elementary OS

        This year good news coming one after another. Everything starts with Fedora announcing Fedora on Lenovo ThinkPad laptops, then Ubuntu announcing Dell XPS Focal Fossa, and now elementary OS announcing both Slimbook and Pine64 PineBook laptops. Now everybody globally can find Ubuntu, Fedora, and elementary OS preloaded on branded laptops and PCs. This means GNU/Linux desktop goes mainstream. I am happy to see this. I really want to sum them up in one article so everybody sees these great moment. For everyone who loves Free Software community here’s the news for you!

    • Kernel Space

      • Linux Kernel 5.9: What’s New and How to Upgrade | FOSS Linux

        The Linux Kernel 5.9 is now out and available for the masses. Like any other release, Kernel 5.9 introduces fantastic features along with updated drivers. The development of Linux kernel 5.9 started about two months ago when Linus Torvalds announced the first release candidate (RC) milestone.


        By anonymous memory, we refer to the memory that is not file-backed—commonly known as malloced memory. The release of Kernel 5.9 aims at better system workload detection and protection of this memory. Generally, the Linux Kernel manages anonymous memory by placing its pages either in an active or inactive list. When the system runs low on memory resources (memory pressure), unused pages are moved from active to inactive list to be referenced again. In case of more memory pressure, they are moved to SWAP.

        Previously, newly created or swap-in pages were pushed to the active list. That, in turn, led to the forced removal of used pages to the inactive list. With kernel 5.9, newly created or swap-in pages are first placed on the inactive list. They are only moved to the active list after being referenced enough. Additionally, to prevent the newly created or swap-in pages from swapping out existing pages from an inactive list, Kernel 5.9 comes with new features to handle the anonymous LRU list.

      • Linux 5.9 released: Bootlin contributions

        Linux 5.9 was released last Sunday. See our usual resources for a good coverage of the highlights of this new release: KernelNewbies page, LWN.net article on the first part of the merge window, LWN.net article on the second part of the merge window.

        On our side, we contributed a total of 69 commits to Linux 5.9, which unusually low and makes Bootlin the 31st contributing company by number of commits according to Linux Kernel Patch Statistic. The highlights of our contributions are…

      • Getting the Most Out of Linux Network Troubleshooting Tools [Ed: Those are not Linux (yes, Linux is just a kernel and we should not call everything that)]

        Pinning down complicated network issues doesn’t have need to involve the use of complicated tools. You don’t need to craft packets by hand and have the network engineering knowledge of a CCIE. More often than not you can easily troubleshoot a network issue using the readily available tools that ship with most Linux distributions. Spending less time finding and installing third-party tools means you have more time to get to the bottom of the problem.

        In this article, we’ll explore some common and fairly straightforward networking tools and how to use them. Most of these tools are usually included in most popular distributions, but there will also be installation instructions where applicable for each one just in case.

        While most of these tools can be used for very simple purposes like checking host connectivity or bandwidth, they can also be used in more advanced ways to investigate problems. This doesn’t mean you absolutely need to go deep diving through the man page, but usually there are additional flags that can be of great use that are less widely known. Sometimes studying the additional options available for a built-in package reveal functionality that would prevent you from reaching for a third-party tool.

      • F2FS With Linux 5.10 Brings Many Improvements And A Few More Features – Phoronix

        The Flash-Friendly File-System (F2FS) that is of growing prominence on Android-powered mobile phones and other flash-storage-only Linux systems has some promising improvements with Linux 5.10.

        The F2FS feature updates for Linux 5.10 are rather exciting this round. Some of the changes for F2FS with this late 2020 kernel include…

      • How Linus Torvalds Invented Today’s Work From Home Paradigm In 1991

        Working from home is beginning to move from being a necessary but temporary way of achieving social distancing in offices, to a radical shift in how many companies will operate. Until now, most of the evidence of that change has been anecdotal. But a Twitter thread by Chris Herd, who is CEO of FirstbaseHQ, which “lets you supply, finance and manage all the physical equipment your remote teams need to do great work at home”, provides some fascinating statistics on the scale of the shift to working from home. Herd says he has talked to around 1000 companies over the last six months about their plans for remote work. One trend is that corporate headquarters are “finished”, he says: companies will cut their commercial office space by 40 to 60%, with people working from home for two to four days each week. Some 30% of the companies Herd talked to say that they intend to get rid of offices completely, and move fully to remote working.

    • Applications

      • Best IRC Chat Clients for Linux

        Internet Relay Chat (IRC) is a protocol used mainly for text based communication over the Internet. IRC chatroom servers are usually used to facilitate communication between groups of users. Users can use any client capable of communication with IRC protocol to connect to the servers and start chatting. IRC groups are often used as the primary mode of support in many open source applications. This article will list free and open source IRC chat clients available for Linux.

      • Windows Calculator Ported To Linux By Uno Platform [Ed: As if GNU/Linux users actually need another calculator, this one with telemetry (spying)]
    • Instructionals/Technical

      • How to install an OpenLDAP Server in Ubuntu 20.04 with phpLDAPadmin > Tux-Techie

        OpenLDAP (lightweight directory access protocol) provides active directory authentication and enables you to set up user accounts that provide the user access on each computer in your network without having to set up a local user account on each computer. This is the protocol that Microsoft Active Directory utilizes. OpenLDAP is the free and open-source implementation of LDAP.

        For this tutorial, you will need an Ubuntu Linux installation with a static IP address assigned, and you will need to make friends with the command prompt.

      • How to Install Docker Compose on Ubuntu [Using Apt-Get]

        Docker Compose is a Python program that lets you easily deploy multiple containers on a server.

        As you start exploring Docker, you’ll learn that often to run a certain web-app, you’ll need to run various services (like database, web-server etc) in different containers.

        Deploying multiple containers is a lot easier with Docker Compose.

      • How To Install PowerShell on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS
      • The Different Shells Available In Emacs – YouTube

        Emacs can be overwhelming to the new user. There is so much stuff inside Emacs. Take the various shells and terminal emulators inside Emacs. Why are there so many? What’s the differences between them?

      • How to Use Evernote on Linux – Linux Hint

        There are often moments in life where an opportunity arises in which you need to write something down and preserve it. This can be from attending a meeting with a client and having to write something important that was discussed during the meeting or the contact information to communicate with the client to even go as far as putting out your thoughts and ideas into words. Both require a medium on which you can write down something.With the world around us becoming fully influenced by technology and everything becoming digitized, gone are the days where a paper and pen was used. Rather, this is where note-taking applications come into the picture which allows you to keep notes of almost everything with your smartphones, either in the form of text or voice. Some even allow you to upload these to the cloud which gives you access to them in multiple devices.

        Note-taking applications, however, are not equal in what they offer, and therefore, it is essential to choose the one that provides you with the most features. One such application that has gained a large following is Evernote and with that in mind, the topic of our discussion in this article is to see how one can use the note-taking application, Evernote, on Linux.

      • How to Backup and Restore a PostgreSQL Database

        In a production environment, no matter how large or small your PostgreSQL database may be, regular back is an essential aspect of database management. In this article, you will learn how to backup and restore a PostgreSQL database.

        We assume that you already have a working installation of the PostgreSQL database system. If not, read our following articles to install PostgreSQL on your Linux distribution.

      • How to read ePubs on Ubuntu 20.04 – Linux Hint

        For centuries, books have been the source of knowledge, providing people with happiness, wisdom, and entertainment. It is these simple pieces of paper that have been there supporting mankind during its hardest time. For most people, there is nothing more pleasing than creeping into the realm of the unknown with a book in hand. As George R.R Martin writes in his Game of Thrones novel, “a mind needs books as a sword needs a whetstone, if it is to keep its edge.”With the world stepping into the era of the digital age, technology has seen rapid growth in its development and this, in turn, has led to more and more things becoming digitized. One such evolution has also taken place in the world of knowledge is with the emergence of eReaders, devices that allow users to read their books digitally, many people have started preferring digital books over their print versions.

      • Getting Yesterday’s or Tomorrow’s date with bash on Linux / Unix – nixCraft

        When invoked without arguments, the date command displays the current date and time. Depending on the options specified, the date would set the date and time or print it in a user-defined format. However, how do you get yesterdays with bash shell script? What about tomorrows day?The post Getting Yesterday’s or Tomorrow’s Day With Bash Shell Date Command on Linux / Unix appeared first on nixCraft.

      • How do I quit Nano? – Linux Hint

        Nano is a user-friendly text editor that provides an ease to the new users than other editors. Users can start work on Nano without getting any training. Nano text editor is not similar to the most popular vim editor. It doesn’t have fancy changing modes that have vim. It works on simple keyboard shortcut keys. So, just hold the Ctrl key and press any key with it to perform an action.

      • How do I Uninstall a Yum Package? – Linux Hint

        Any Linux distro is a collection of numerous packages. To keep all of them in order, a suitable package manager is a must. Depending on what type of package the distro uses, the package manager differs. In the case of distros using the RPM package, yum is the package manager. It’s available on CentOS, RHEL, and other RPM-based distros (Fedora, and OpenSUSE, etc.). However, it’s mostly used on CentOS and RHEL.

      • How to Install SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 15 SP2 (Minimal No GUI) on VMware Workstation – SysAdmin

        This video tutorial shows how to install SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 15 SP2 (Minimal No GUI) on VMware Workstation step by step. This tutorial is also helpful to install SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 15 on physical computer or laptop hardware.

      • How to Install Zabbix in Debian – Linux Hint

        Network management is a part of the job of a system administrator. Zabbix is a wonderful solution for monitoring and managing networks. This program is free and open-source software that comes with tons of features. Zabbix is used for monitoring networks, servers, applications, services, and even cloud resources. It also supports monitoring storage, databases, virtual machines, telephony, and a lot more.

      • How to Install Cinnamon Desktop on Arch Linux – Linux Hint

        Cinnamon is a trendy flavor of the Linux desktop. In simple terms, Cinnamon operates as an open-source desktop environment that is a driven part of GNOME. Installing Cinnamon on Arch Linux is comparatively convenient because it does not comprise any heavy programming. Cinnamon comes from the developing team of Linux Mint. Even a beginner can install Cinnamon on the Arch Linux server without any hassle. In terms of operability, it works on par with other desktop environments, such as GNOME and KDE. The depository works at a smoother pace in Cinnamon, and it offers a more vibrant look by incorporating a user-friendly interface. This guide covers some features of the Cinnamon desktop, along with how to install this desktop in Arch Linux, for both beginners and professionals.

      • How to Install TeamViewer on Arch Linux – Linux Hint

        TeamViewer is a remote connection software that allows connections between multiple users of different systems through desktop sharing. It is a vital tool that allows many users to share videos, conferencing, and file transfers with other computers throughout the world. TeamViewer optimizes instant remote access and real-time support between connecting devices. An unlimited number of devices at once can connect through this program. This guide helps you to understand the needs of this application and provides its method of installation. Note that TeamViewer does not officially support Arch Linux. To install the TeamViewer software, you must go through the packaging. In this article, we will show you how to quickly establish TeamViewer in Arch Linux.

      • How to update Grub in Arch Linux – Linux Hint

        The Arch Linux users are well aware of the open-source software that is voguish by the name of GRUB. It is inherently a bootloader that administers the function of system booting. The programmers who use Arch Linux will implement GRUB as their primary bootloader. If you are not using GRUB, then every time you open the server for updating, it will refer you to use a bootloader or GRUB. It also encompasses a variant configuration packages that assist in the assurance of thorough system boot. Whenever you open your system of Arch Linux, it executes the operationality of GRUB to update and load the server. This guide shares the details of updating GRUB efficaciously on your operating system of Arch Linux. The step by step process will enable you to comprehend the commands of GRUB to use it on your server. This way, you can affirm that your GRUB is actively operating on your server to boot and update system packages.

      • How to Kill a Process from the Command Line – Linux Hint

        Every program that has been brought into RAM and is all set to be directed towards CPU for execution is known as a process. Whenever you are working with an operating system of your choice, you will notice multiple processes running on it at a time. Some of these processes are triggered to start automatically as soon as you turn on your operating system, i.e., these processes are mandatory for your system to work properly. There are also some processes that you have to trigger manually upon system start.

        At times, you may feel as though some unnecessary processes are running on your system, you might not need a process any longer, or a process may have started malfunctioning. In all of these situations, you will have to try to find a way of killing (or ending) the processes. You can kill a process in Linux either via the GUI or the CLI. This article explores some of the different ways in which to kill a process from the command line in Linux.

      • How to install and use MailSpring on Ubuntu 20.04 – Linux Hint

        With technology progressing at such a rapid rate, this has led to the introduction of several applications and websites that allow interaction between people and easily lets them communicate with one another even if they are hundreds, thousands of meters apart. One such form of communication that has come into existence and become an integral part of people’s lives is email.

        Before the advent of email, there was a heavy reliance on postal services which involved a lot of delay and uncertainty. With the introduction of email, the communication sector has undergone a huge change as now people can easily communicate with one another with just a click of a button. Emails have also become highly important in the business sector as many companies talk with their clients through this source of medium. Being cheap, fast, highly efficient as well as the most flexible and best source for communication in a professional manner, emails have greatly revolutionized the communication sector.

        With emails having such a huge role in today’s market, it is, therefore, important to choose an email client that offers the best features and is easy to use. One great alternative is Mailspring, a cross-platform desktop email client, which will also be the topic of our discussion in this article.

      • How to Install Papirus Icon Theme on Ubuntu 20.04 – Linux Hint

        Ubuntu is a Debian based operating system that has become one of the most popular Linux distributions available for desktop. Since it has a Linux kernel at its core, it follows the same code of conduct and public license as that of Linux and thus, is completely free to use and users are free to run, copy, distribute and develop its software. This makes it an extremely reliable and secure alternative to have and allows it to be less vulnerable to bugs and errors.
        Ubuntu is bundled with so many amazing features and it is no wonder why it has gained such a large following. One such feature that is greatly appreciated by all users is its customizable and extensible nature. Ubuntu is extremely easy to configure and tweak around with and this is a huge plus point as users want to be able to change their desktops to match their interests. There are hundreds of Linux themes available out there and the figure keeps on increasing.

        A popular choice among users is the Papirus Icon Theme, a polished and well-designed theme that is available on several desktop environments including Unity, GNOME, Cinnamon, XFCE, KDE, and so on.

    • Wine or Emulation

      • Steam Play Proton 5.13-1 Linux compatibility layer up and ready for testing

        Valve has released Proton 5.13-1 for testing, this compatibility layer for Steam Play brings with it many advancements for getting more Windows games working on Linux.

        This is the first proper public release of Proton since 5.0-9 back in June, while they also had 5.0-10 left in testing back in July so no doubt this will be very exciting for fans of Proton. If you’re not clear on what Proton and Steam Play are, be sure to check out our constantly updated dedicated page.

        Before getting started, be aware this comes with a known issue with controllers / gamepads where hotplugging is currently broken in some titles. Apart from that, it sounds like a huge release including lots of new playable titles like: Red Dead Redemption 2, Horizon Zero Dawn, DEATH STRANDING, Sea of Thieves, Age of Empires III, Call of Duty: WWII, Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare and others.

      • Valve/CodeWeavers Releases Proton 5.13-1 With More Windows Games Running On Linux

        The Wine-based Proton development has been disappointingly quiet in recent weeks but fortunately it’s alive and ticking with today’s Proton 5.13-1 release for powering Valve’s Steam Play to run many modern Windows games gracefully on Linux.


        Red Dead Redemption 2
        Horizon Zero Dawn
        Metal Gear Solid 5: Ground Zeroes
        Final Fantasy XV
        Sea of Thieves
        Star Wars: Battlefront II
        Call of Duty: WWII
        Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare
        Call of Duty: Modern Warfare
        Asssassin’s Creed: Rogue
        Assassin’s Creed IV Black Flag
        South Park: The Fractured But Whole
        DiRT Rally 2
        Age of Empires II: Definitive Edition
        Age of Empires III
        Dragon Quest Builders 2
        Ashes of the Singularity: Escalation
        Tron 2.0
        AO Tennis 2
        Fight’N Rage
        Woolfe – The Red Hood Diaries

    • Games

      • ‘Sea Of Thieves’ And ‘Horizon Zero Dawn’ Lead New Wave Of Games On Linux

        On the Linux gaming front, news from the Steam Proton team probably hasn’t been as frequent as we’d like. Thankfully, the wizards at Wine and Valve just released a fantastic update to Proton (version 5.13), the built-in tool that seamlessly allows Windows-only Steam games to run on Linux. And said update brings a bunch of sought-after AAA games to the Linux crowd including Horizon Zero Dawn, Microsoft’s Sea of Thieves and Death Stranding.

      • Sneak In is a new casual Zuma-like marble shooter out now | GamingOnLinux

        Binogure Studio, developer of City Game Studio have released their casual Zuma-like marble shooter and it seems like another lovely little coffee-break game.

        With a wonderfully simple idea, you just need to shoot marbles from your little cannon towards matching colours to make combinations that set off chain-reactions, so it works very much like a match-3 puzzler, with everything gradually moving along the snake-like path and you need to remove them all before the snake at the end gobbles them all up.

      • Cyberpunk 2077 confirmed for Stadia on November 19 | GamingOnLinux

        While the upcoming Cyberpunk 2077 will not support the Linux desktop, it is at least confirmed to be launching on Stadia same-day as other platforms on November 19.

        This gives Linux gamers another way to play, with Stadia getting more huge upcoming games, as on Linux all you need is a Chromium browser and a mouse or gamepad hooked up. If your country is in the supported list for Stadia, that is. Google has still yet to announce wider support for the game streaming service.

        Stadia getting probably one of, if not the biggest release this year day and date with other platforms with Cyberpunk 2077 is pretty huge news and perhaps a show of how serious Google are about bringing more people and more games over to it.

      • Ready for a laugh? Comedy point and clicking adventure Plot of the Druid gains a demo | GamingOnLinux

        While the actual release is a while away and it’s still in development, Adventure4Life Studios have put up a demo of their comedy point and click adventure Plot of the Druid.

        Sounds like it’s going to be a completely ridiculous game too, inspired by Simon the Sorcerer, Discworld and Harry Potter with an attempt at sarcastic British humour where you harness the power of nature to solve problems. There will be party crashing, wood spirits with hangovers, you get to avoid awkward social situations by turning into a small furry creature and plenty more.

      • Warhammer 40,000: Mechanicus gets a big sale, Free Weekend and a Complete Collection | GamingOnLinux

        Warhammer 40,000: Mechanicus, the very cool turn-based strategy game from Bulwark Studios and Kasedo Games is worth a look this weekend.

        They’ve just announced that they’ve put up a Complete Collection bundle, so if you were interested in picking it up you can buy it as one big bundle of the base game plus the DLC. Not only that though, you can now try before you buy as it’s on a Steam Free Weekend – this means you can download and play for free and it’s also on a big discount so if you decide you like it you can grab it cheaps.

      • Dota 2 getting a new hero in November, more next year and a CS:GO style Overwatch system | GamingOnLinux

        Valve are trying to communicate a little more now, and they’ve announced some major changes for Dota 2 along with info on more to come. Here’s some highlights of what’s live and what’s coming.

        A new season has arrived that runs until the beginning of December 2020, and with it plenty of changes.

        Firstly, there’s a new Autumnal Treasure 2020 up that can be purchased with Shards, the in-game Dota 2 currency. Valve is planned to have a new seasonal treasure up every 3 months, with the next coming on December 1.

      • Free online co-op survival horror Zombie Panic! Source 3.1 is out with Linux support | GamingOnLinux

        After being in development for some time, Zombie Panic! Source has the huge 3.1 release pushed out which brings with it the official Linux support.

        What actually is it? Zombie Panic! Source is a cooperative, survival-horror first-person-shooter. Think of it like a dedicated infection-mode game. Most players start off as humans, while a few Zombies trying to take them down and infect them and have it spread. Two opposing teams, with very different play-styles.

        So why did this upgrade take so long? As time went on and they attempted to do a major code rewrite to get around major issues, they realized how “awful” some parts of the game functioned and so they decided to blitz through it all and ship out a much bigger and better upgrade overall. They’ve said now this is out, they will hopefully go back to more regular updates.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • KD Reports 1.8.2 has been released

          We’ve just released version 1.8.2 of our developer tool, KD Reports. KD Reports generates printable and exportable reports from code and from XML descriptions. Reports may contain text paragraphs, tables, headlines, charts, headers and footers and more. Version 1.8.2 is planned to be the final release in the 1.8 series of KD Reports.

          KD Reports 1.8.2 is a minor release, with the main purpose of cleaning up any last remaining small issues for people who want to keep using Qt 4. Version 1.9 will not support Qt 4. Additionally, 1.8.2 comes with two fixes: fix compiling against a Qt namespace build and fix static linking examples and unittests in the CMake buildsystem. Finally, we made a few small improvements to the buildsystem.

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • Best GTK3 Themes for Linux

          This article will cover some of the most popular GTK3 themes available for Linux. If you don’t like the default look and feel of your GNOME based Linux distribution, you can use these themes to give a new flavor to your desktop.

          To change GTK3 themes in your system, you may need to install the “GNOME Tweaks” app from the package manager of your Linux distribution. Maintaining and continuously updating GTK3 themes can be a difficult task for developers, as the GNOME API is ever changing. The new GNOME Shell desktop environment doesn’t encourage third party themes. However, third party themes are still being developed, though their numbers have certainly declined over the years.

        • CoyIM – A GTK+ Chat Client Focus on Safety and Security

          Looking for an XMPP Jabber client for Linux? CoyIM is a free open-source GTK+ client that focus on safety and security.

          CoyIM is written in Go programming language with GTK+ framework. It works on Linux, Windows, and Mac OS. The chat client has built-in support for Tor, OTR and TLS.

          The Tor support allows users to become anonymous while chatting, OTR makes end-to-end encryption of communication possible, and TLS adds another layer of encryption for the communication with chat servers.

    • Distributions

      • Endless 3.9.0 Beta 1 Trip Report

        Back in April I wrote a Trip Report of the last major Endless OS Beta release. It was fun! I use Endless OS every day and have a very soft spot for it after Product Managing it for a couple of rewarding yet high stress years. Now the team has released their first beta of the 3.9 release series. If I was still there this is the sort of thing the team would get in a blizzard of Google Docs and Phabricator tickets. Sadly for them open source means they don’t get to escape my opinions that easily.

        I’m going to mention again, because I’ve recently had to sit through a couple of excruciating update experiences in macOS, Windows and Manjaro that image based update experiences like those used by Endless, Fedora Silverblue and Chrome OS are just plain better. Aside from that the most important thing to note is that this comes with the new 3.38 GNOME release so it inherits all the improvements from that, although many of the app improvements will have already come through to users directly through Flathub. Now GNOME is released software, but an operating system isn’t just GNOME, it’s a whole thing so you should really remember that this is a beta, which means that the team doesn’t think this is finished yet. I’m sure they’re aware of some or all of the comments I’m making below – this is intended to be helpful, to let them know what people find useful, or would like them to prioritise improving.

      • New Releases

        • Prattling a Distro; Parrot OS

          Parrot OS was initially released on 10th April 2013. It has now grown to become one of the most popular penetration testing distros in the arena.
          So, we asked the Parrot Dev Team some interesting questions and got some interesting answers. Here’s what NONG HOANG Tu, aka @dmknght, ​one of the developers, had to say…

      • SUSE/OpenSUSE

        • Modern Computer in a Commodore 64 Shell

          This Commodore 64 retro computer case plus openSUSE Linux with a little mix of DIY is a perfect mixture of Linux and vintage tech enthusiasm with a dash of my almost unhealthy obsession of openSUSE Linux. It just all comes together here.

          I have often heard from some people that standards aren’t fun or standards restrict too much. I think this idea is rather absurd as it is the “restriction” of standards that give us the framework to support the freedom to create new and interesting things. Everything from this “Modern” Commodore 64 case to house standard components is cost effective because of the standard interfaces. I think we can see evidence of this everywhere. This can be everything from programming languages to graphical widget toolkits. Not to say that standards need to be static but having a solid foundation from which to build allows for wonderful and interesting creations. The Commodore 64 Retro Case is just one example of it.

      • Debian Family

        • Redo Rescue 3.0 Switches to Debian GNU/Linux 10 “Buster,” Adds UEFI Secure Boot

          Based on the latest Debian GNU/Linux 10 “Buster” operating system series, Redo Rescue 3.0 is a major release that introduces UEFI Secure Boot support, thus making the backup and recovery distribution compatible with even more computers and hardware.

          Due to the major upgrade to a newer Debian GNU/Linux branch, Redo Rescue now includes more recent binaries of the Partclone open-source partition cloning and restore utility, as well as for all the other included tools.

          On top of that, Redo Rescue now features a beautiful new GRUB bootloader theme with dynamic screen layout and the initial implementation of multi-language support through a new language selection menu.

        • Debian Janitor: How to Contribute Lintian-Brush Fixers

          The Debian Janitor is an automated system that commits fixes for (minor) issues in Debian packages that can be fixed by software. It gradually started proposing merges in early December. The first set of changes sent out ran lintian-brush on sid packages maintained in Git. This post is part of a series about the progress of the Janitor.

        • Raphaël Hertzog: Freexian’s report about Debian Long Term Support, September 2020

          Like each month, here comes a report about the work of paid contributors to Debian LTS.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Ubuntu Blog: Introducing Ubuntu support for Amazon EKS 1.18

          Amazon Elastic Kubernetes Service (EKS) is a fully automated Kubernetes cluster service on Amazon Web Services (AWS). Ubuntu is a popular and proven operating system for both virtual machine and containerized cloud computing. Canonical (the creator and primary maintainer of Ubuntu) is an Amazon partner and works with the EKS team to provide an optimized Ubuntu Amazon Machine Image (AMI) for running Kubernetes on AWS. EKS-optimized Ubuntu AMIs give you the familiarity and consistency of using Ubuntu, optimized for performance and security on EKS clusters.

          Ubuntu optimized AMIs for Amazon EKS and Kubernetes versions 1.17 and 1.18 are now available. These images combine the Ubuntu OS with Canonical’s distribution of upstream Kubernetes that automates K8s deployment and operations. In addition to using a slimmed-down, minimal image these images take advantage of a custom kernel that is jointly developed with AWS.

        • Ubuntu 18.04 Users Can Upgrade to Ubuntu 20.04 LTS (Yes, Finally)

          If you’re on Ubuntu 18.04 LTS and you’ve been waiting for the prompt that lets you upgrade to Ubuntu 20.04 LTS you can relax: it’s rolling out

          Confused? I imagine a lot of people reading this post will be. So I’ll recap: an Ubuntu LTS to LTS upgrade is only “officially” possible once the first point release to the latest LTS has gone live.

          But until it does you can’t upgrade one LTS to the new LTS., not without diving into the command line.

          Ubuntu 20.04.1 LTS was released in July. In theory, Ubuntu 18.04 LTS users should’ve started to see the “there’s a newer version of Ubuntu” upgrade prompt box on their desktops from this date onwards.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Is open source a development model, business model, or something else?

        The term “open source” was coined in 1998 at a strategy session held by Open Source Initiative (OSI). The OSI maintains the Open Source Definition (OSD), which places mandates on the distribution terms of any software that claims to be open source. The OSI also maintains a curated list of official open source licenses that meet these guidelines.

        The OSD gives a clear definition of what open source software is, but doesn’t provide much insight into how the adoption of open source affects a company’s ability to build and deliver products or services that people want and need. Stated another way, there’s still tremendous debate about the best ways to build a business based on open source.

      • Openness/Sharing/Collaboration

        • Open Access/Content

          • Education Groups Drop Their Lawsuit Against Public.Resource.Org, Give Up Their Quest to Paywall the Law

            This week, open and equitable access to the law got a bit closer. For many years, EFF, along with co-counsel at Fenwick & West and attorney David Halperin, has defended Public.Resource.Org in its quest to improve public access to the law — including standards, like the National Electrical Code, that legislators and agencies have made into binding regulations. In two companion lawsuits, six standards development organizations sued Public Resource in 2013 for posting standards online. They accused Public Resource of copyright infringement and demanded the right to keep the law behind paywalls.

            Yesterday, three of those organizations dropped their suit. The American Educational Research Association (AERA), the National Council on Measurement in Education (NCME), and the American Psychological Association (APA) publish a standard for writing and administering tests. The standard is widely used in education and employment contexts, and several U.S. federal and state government agencies have incorporated it into their laws.

      • Programming/Development

        • Join the UK Bebras Challenge 2020 for schools!
        • Python

          • EuroPython 2021 will be run online

            In the last few weeks, we had a close look at the how the situation around COVID-19 is panning out. Unfortunately, things are not moving in a direction where we’d feel confident to hold next year’s conference as an in-person event in Dublin.

          • Capped Social Network – Building SaaS #76

            In this episode, I started a new project to build a different kind of social network. This social network will contain a max number of connections to encourage thoughtful choice when growing your personal network. We talked MVP features and put in the basics of a Django app.

            I had a wild thought to build a social network with a capped number of connection in the hope that users would choice their connections based on people that they really care about. To get that idea out of my head, I started a social network repo.

        • Laravel

          • Laravel : BadMethodCallException Method [find] does not exist – Linux Hint

            I have been trying to get an Eloquent model from the database but keep getting into BadMethodCallExceptionMethod[find] does not exist.

          • Laravel is not reading .env file after change – Linux Hint

            This one if a fairly common issue that shows up among new Laravel developers.

            A lot of people have been trying to update their .env file just to see that when they refresh their application, the .env config values are not showing up.

            And what’s more interesting is that quite often, this will show up after you upgrade your Laravel version.

          • Laravel: How to add column to an existing table – Linux Hint

            Adding new columns to your Laravel migrations is a common thing. Applications are meant to be scalable which means that adding new features develops your application further.

            Very often, new Laravel developers need to run their migrations but they don’t make sure that migrations can rollback and migrate multiple times without breaking anything.

            While that’s not our focus, I think it was important to state that before we head into our problem.

            The following is a common issue that new Laravel developers will try to do when they want to add a new column to an existing table.

          • Laravel: How to backup a database – Linux Hint

            Unfortunately, many new Laravel developers don’t realize this until they put their code in production, and something happens so they lose their data.

            Laravel does not offer a database backup as part of their core functionality so new Laravel developers don’t get to work with that while reading Laravel articles or building a Laravel application.

            Today, it becomes an increasingly important thing to store and preserve your backup data in case you ever need to use it.

            Common mistakes new Laravel developers do is to go to phpmyadmin and try to run this export manually. While this will still work, it is not the best practice because sometimes you won’t be there to make the backup, and your users already generated new data.

          • Laravel: How to test emails quickly and safely – Linux Hint

            Your Laravel application will probably have an ability to communicate with your users through emails.

            There are many hurdles and challenges when coding an email template for Laravel. The most time-consuming thing is making sure that your email template works well and looks the way you expected it to look like.

            Obviously you could register a new Gmail account and create an app with Gmail. That would give you real email delivery that you can check on your phone for example.

            The problem here is if you are working with a real database and you can’t afford to send out test emails to your real users. If this is what’s bugging you then I have some good news for you.

        • Java and JS

          • Javascript split – Linux Hint

            Javascript is a scripting or programming language of the web. Strings are an important part of the variables in any programming language. We often need to manipulate string according to our needs. In this article, we will talk about the javascript’s split string method which is used to split the string according to our needs. So, let’s take a look at what is a string and what does split string method do.

          • Javascript replace – Linux Hint

            Javascript is a scripting or programming language of the web. Strings are an important part of the variables in any programming language. We often need to manipulate or extract some specific string according to our needs. You must have seen it often at a lot of websites that on a click of a button or something the text got changed. How can we find and replace some specific words in a long paragraph in javascript? Do we have to change all the code? Of course not, we have a replace() method in javascript to replace the substring with a new provided string. So, let’s take a look at what is a string and how can we replace a substring with another string.

  • Leftovers

    • Hydra Headed: San Francisco’s Untold History

      What bothers me most about the region is its hubris. There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t hear someone tell me that northern California is the best place to live and work anywhere in the world, though with wildfires and the pandemic their voices aren’t as loud or as strident as they once were. The local daily paper, The Press Democrat, continually tries to cheer up its readers, instill them with hope (often false) and encourage them to buy, sell, consume and join the chorus of yeah sayers. The San Francisco Chronicle does much the same thing. So I understand Alexander Tarr’s sentiments and I laud him for his honesty.

      Tarr teaches at Worcester State University in Massachusetts. He and his co-author, Rachel Brahinsky, who once wrote for the San Francisco Bay Guardian and who teaches at the University of San Francisco, have written an honest book about a region often dishonest about itself, which extends over ten counties, at last count, and that includes Contra Costa, Marin, Alameda, Santa Clara, San Mateo, Sonoma, Napa, Solano, Santa Cruz and San Francisco, all of them connected by economics, politics and culture, and increasingly challenging to navigate by car, mass transit and on foot.

    • Synthesizing Sound and Self

      Wendy Carlos would hate the way I’ve written about her. For decades, the pioneering electronic music composer has deflected suggestions that her identity as a transgender woman has any bearing on the inventive, playful, and often surreal electronic music she has made on the instrument she helped develop, the synthesizer. She worked with Robert Moog closely and rigorously during the development of early commercial synths; she’s in part responsible for the way these now ubiquitous machines sound and feel, helping usher in the synthesizer’s transformation from a huge, awkward computer housed in academic laboratories to a lithe, flexible instrument that plays like a futuristic piano.

    • Science

      • History of the Babbage Engine – Linux Hint

        In the 1980s, more than 100 years after Babbage’s death, Allan Broomley, an associate professor at the University of Sydney, took interest in the original drawings of the Babbage Engine at the Science Museum Library in London. His studies caught the attention of the Museum’s then Curator of Computing, Doron Swade, who led the construction of the Difference Engine 2 calculating section from 1985-1991. Nathan Myhrvold, former Chief Technology Officer at Microsoft, then commissioned the construction of the printing section of the engine. The first complete version of the Difference Engine 2 was finally completed in 2002,[9] and it works just as Babbage had designed. After the successful completion of the first Difference Engine 2, Myhrvold also funded the construction of its clone, which was completed in 2008.

        Today, the original Difference Engine 2 is on display at the Science Museum in London, and its clone is sitting inside Intellectual Ventures in Seattle. Babbage’s pioneering work in automatic computing has become the foundation of the subsequent computer technologies that were developed over time. He may never have seen his masterpiece in its full glory, but the Babbage Engine is undoubtedly one of the most brilliant and founding inventions in the history of computer technology.

    • Health/Nutrition

      • New York Court Officials to Review Cases Handled by Judge With Alzheimer’s

        New York court officials have begun a review of recent cases handled by a State Supreme Court judge forced to retire this summer because of early onset Alzheimer’s disease.

        The state’s chief administrative judge, Lawrence Marks, said the review would include all decisions or rulings signed by ShawnDya Simpson while she was on medical leave — dozens of Civil Court matters from Sep. 1, 2019 to Jan. 8, 2020. Simpson, 54, did not receive a formal Alzheimer’s diagnosis until early 2020, and her retirement was not announced until late July this year.

      • Barrett’s Confirmation Would Empower Catholic Hospitals to Deny Crucial Care

        As the U.S. focuses on Judge Amy Coney Barrett’s confirmation hearings, another story out this week may have flown under the radar. Michigan Sen. Gary Peters went public with a story about his first wife’s near-death experience from a miscarriage that sounded familiar to people who research Catholic hospitals. When his wife, Heidi, was four months pregnant in the 1980s, her water broke, meaning the fetus could not survive. The hospital sent her home twice to wait for a miscarriage. On the third day, as her health deteriorated, her doctor warned she could lose her uterus or die if she didn’t have an abortion soon. But the hospital’s policy banned abortion and its board denied the doctor’s request for an exception.

      • 23 Million US Homes Remain Lead-Contaminated Years After Flint Made Headlines

        Flint, Michigan, made headlines, starting in 2015, when 5 percent of the city’s young children tested high for the toxic metal lead in their blood. As the story unfolded, it became clear that the children of Flint were victims of a massive failure of government — really a century-long failure to control the lead industry and the secondary industries that put lead into products for public consumption (gasoline, batteries, water pipes, paint, even some cosmetics, spices and glazes on pottery for cooking). The Trump administration is compounding and extending that failure.

      • Trump Got the Best COVID Treatment. For the Rest of Us He Wants “Herd Immunity.”

        The Great Barrington Declaration. Sounds heavy, yeah? Thunder of drums, hushed silence, and behold: A jagged stack of cruelty passing itself off as science that claims “herd immunity” is the way to get out from under the grinding crisis of COVID-19. In truth, it sounds like just more preposterous ooze from the primordial swamp of the far right, but for the fact that the White House has embraced it as the Trump administration’s defining COVID policy.

      • White House Advisers Privately Gave Sober COVID Warnings as Trump Misled Public

        More evidence has emerged showing that the Trump administration provided a profoundly different outlook to the public about the possible effects of the coronavirus pandemic than it did behind closed doors in the weeks leading up to.

      • Inside the Fall of the CDC

        At 7:47 a.m. on the Sunday of Memorial Day weekend, Dr. Jay Butler pounded out a grim email to colleagues at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta.

        Butler, then the head of the agency’s coronavirus response, and his team had been trying to craft guidance to help Americans return safely to worship amid worries that two of its greatest comforts — the chanting of prayers and singing of hymns — could launch a deadly virus into the air with each breath.

      • To Oppose Trump Politicizing of Covid-19, DC Rally to Demand “People’s Vaccine” Be Free and Accessible to All

        “Our best chance of staying safe is to ensure a Covid-19 vaccine is available for all as a common good.”

      • Boris Johnson at Sea: Coronavirus Confusion in the UK

        In responding to a question on these new regulations, the prime minister erred in stating that the rule-of-six limit on gatherings did not apply to people meeting outdoors. “It is a six in a home or in hospitality but not six outside.” The government’s official guidance stated something rather different. “When meeting friends and family you do not live with (or have formed a support bubble with) you must not meet in a group of more than 6, indoors or outdoors.” This would be “against the law and the police will have the powers to enforce these legal limits, including to issue fines (fixed penalty notices) of £200, doubling for further breaches up to a maximum of £6,400.” Stiff consequences tend to follow from such misunderstandings.

        Having fallen into his own trap, the prime minister had to concede his error. “Apologies,” he tweeted, “I misspoke today.” Having corrected himself on the regulations limiting such socialising both indoors and out, he tried to wave the much tattered flag of patriotic encouragement. “This is vital to control the spread of coronavirus and keep everyone safe. If you are in a high risk area, please continue to follow the guidelines from local authorities.” But evidently be wary of what the prime minister tells you.

      • The Power of Covid-Positive Thinking

        If Donald trump can be said to believe in anything besides his own enrichment, it is the power of positive thinking. His family worshipped at the Marble Collegiate Church in New York, whose pep-talking preacher Norman Vincent Peale came up with the positive-thinking creed. Trump married two of his wives—Ivana Trump and Marla Maples—in the church; his parents’ funerals were also held there. It’s this unassailable faith in boosterism that has led him to respond to his diagnosis of Covid-19 with a narrative about how he’s learned valuable lessons that will make him an even better president.

      • Herd Immunity: Is It a More Compassionate Approach or Will It Lead to Death or Illness for Millions?

        As coronavirus cases increase across much of the United States, the Trump administration has reportedly adopted a policy of deliberately letting the virus infect much of the U.S. population in order to attain “herd immunity” — despite warnings from the World Health Organization against such an approach. We host a debate on the contentious issue of herd immunity and how best to confront the virus with two Harvard medical experts: epidemiologist Martin Kulldorff, a professor of medicine at Harvard University and one of the lead signatories of the controversial Great Barrington Declaration arguing for an easing of lockdowns, and Dr. Abraar Karan, an internal medicine doctor at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital and at Harvard Medical School who has worked on the COVID-19 public health response in Massachusetts since February.

      • “Totally Under Control” shows all the ways the Trump administration let a virus win

        “Totally Under Control” is a 123-minute indictment of the Trump administration’s disastrous mishandling of this pandemic, which is exactly what a person expects from an Alex Gibney documentary. No fan of this administration, Gibney has had an especially prolific 365 days thanks to this administration’s bungling; this is his third Trump-related documentary released since last November, after “Citizen K,” and HBO’s “Agents of Chaos.”

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Vivaldi heads back to ’80s with a pixel-pushing release of its Chromium-based browser

          Norwegian software-maker Vivaldi has emitted an update to its eponymous browser, featuring some additional configuration and reload options as well as a ton of retro-pixelled gaming goodness.

          The company is keen that users take an occasional break from the web, but even the most enlightened boss might be a little alarmed at Vivaldia turning up on the desktop and Android versions of the browser.

          Vivaldi is the latest to pop a bit of entertainment into the code of a browser. edge://surf will send a surfer avatar down the screen of Microsoft’s Chromium browser. vivaldi://game will similarly fire up the pixels with some horizontal scrolling 80s-inspired arcade action.

        • Microsoft ends support for Office 2010, bangs the Office 365 gong
        • Microsoft is foisting Office web apps on Edge users

          Microsoft is no stranger to using Windows and other software to promote more of its own apps and services. The latest way the company is doing this is via Edge.

          Accusations of using its products as an advertising tool or as a means of forcing products onto users are nothing new for the Windows maker, and the company’s latest move with Edge does nothing to shake them off. The browser has been found to install Microsoft Office web apps without asking for permission.

        • JACK2 Audio Server Rolls Out Better Windows + macOS Support – Phoronix

          JACK2 1.9.15 released on Thursday as the newest version of this professional-minded sound server focused on real-time, low-latency connections.

          JACK2 1.9.15 brings a number of bug fixes, improvements to various JACK tools, deprecates JACK-Session, and makes other improvements. JACK1 continues to be in a bug-fix mode while JACK2 continues advancing slowly and incorporating all of its functionality.

        • Has Apple abandoned CUPS, the Linux’s world’s widely used open-source printing system? Seems so

          After only one public Git commit this year, penguinstas think: Fork it, we don’t need Cupertino. The official public repository for CUPS, an Apple open-source project widely used for printing on Linux, is all-but dormant since the lead developer left Apple at the end of 2019.

        • Security

          • Intel, Google find high-severity flaws in Linux Bluetooth stack

            Intel and Google have published advisories about what they say are high-severity bugs in the Bluetooth stack used in the Linux kernel, with kernels up to 5.8.15 affected.

          • Dark web sec firm lists more than 800 ransomware attacks in last 12 months

            A total of 809 ransomware attacks have taken place in the last 12 months, according to DarkTracer, a company that develops a dark web intelligence platform.

          • Ransomware gang attacks Texas unit of global steel conglomerate

            Malicious attackers appear to have used the Windows SunCrypt ransomware to attack the Texas operations of global steel conglomerate JSW Steel, and have leaked a single company document on the dark web, apparently one which was stolen during the attack.

          • Retail bookseller Barnes & Noble hacked, parts of network offline

            Barnes & Noble, the biggest retail bookseller in the US, appears to have been hit by a cyber attack and been forced to take down parts of its network.

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • Moscow introduces QR-code contact tracing to monitor COVID-19’s nightlife spread

              Feeling cool? Itching to show off your hip moves at the nearest discotheque, bar, or other entertainment venue? In Moscow, according to new executive orders issued by Mayor Sergey Sobyanin, you’ll need to register a telephone number with the city by scanning a QR code or sending a text message to 7377 in order to strut your stuff between the hours of 1 a.m. and 6 a.m.

            • Police Surveillance is Criminalization and It Crushes People

              The media called Jesse Harvey a “recovery advocate.” To others, he was “Narcan Jesus.”

              In 2016, Harvey founded Journey House Recovery, a non-profit that today operates four low barrier, peer-run recovery houses in Southern and Central Maine. In 2018, Harvey formed Church of Safe Injection because “other churches…aren’t interested in helping people who use drugs.” The church is a workaround and a protest. It is an attempt to find loophole to distribute clean hypodermic needles and naloxone, the medication used to counteract opioid overdoses. It’s also a political challenge to the criminalization of the opioid epidemic. Now with five branches in as many states, its success is further support for what the approximately 120 supervised injections sites operating across the world have already proven: harm reduction works.

            • French data protection authority says it can’t trust top US Internet companies with EU personal data – even if they keep it in the EU

              Last month, this blog looked at the continuing repercussions of the decision by the EU’s top court, the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU), to strike down the Privacy Shield framework that legalizes most flows of personal information from the EU to the US. The privacy activist who brought the original case against Facebook some seven years ago, Max Schrems, is still fighting to get the Irish Data Protection Commission (DPC) to investigate whether Facebook complies with the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). As Privacy News Online wrote, instead of responding to Schrems’s original complaint, the DPC has opened up a second investigation – one, moreover, that is largely irrelevant, for reasons explained last month. Schrems’ organization noyb.eu has now taken further legal action against the DPC, and has been granted a judicial review into the DPC’s actions by the Irish High Court. Schrems hopes the hearing will take place by the end of the year, and says: “The DPC has already pledged to the Court in 2015 that it will swiftly decide. It seems like we need a clear judgment to force the DPC to do its job.”

            • Helsinki looks at AI-enhanced camera system to count crowds

              Developed in cooperation with the information and security technology company Virian, the system tested is based on video analytics. It can determine how many people are on the move in the key outdoor spaces at different times of the day. Test monitoring was carried out in August at Helsinki’s Senate Square and in September at Citizen’s Square.


              The system that was piloted was developed and implemented by Viria’s subsidiaries Viria Security Oy and Aureolis Oy.

            • Twitter’s Service Mostly Restored After Apparent Global Outage

              The company earlier said it saw no evidence of a security breach or [cr]ack, but was investigating internal causes for the problems. San Francisco-based Twitter had said on its status website it was looking into an “irregularity” with its APIs, the technology that lets different software systems interact with each other.

            • Twitter’s massive outage may be over, company says ‘no evidence’ of hack

              Twitter has been experiencing an outage that began in the early evening on Thursday, with some users reporting problems sending tweets and refreshing their timelines starting shortly after 5:30PM ET. Just after 7PM ET, tweets began to cross our timelines, and things may be returning to normal.

            • Twitter hit by brief outage a day after blocking Hunter Biden article

              A day after it blocked the posting of an article about alleged shady doings by the son of Democrat presidential contender Joe Biden, the social media site Twitter has apparently been hit by an outage.

            • Facebook & Twitter Try To Limit The Spread Of Sketchy NY Post Story; Leading To Ridiculous Trumpist Meltdown

              Yesterday was certainly an interesting day in the content moderation realm. Early in the morning the NY Post released a story that I won’t link to, mainly because it’s hot garbage. If you want a concise, non-hyperbolic, and thorough (and non-partisan) analysis of why the story is problematic, I suggest reading Thomas Rid’s analysis, which highlights the many questions the story raises, and why it should not be reported on until certain details are confirmed.

    • Defence/Aggression

      • ‘Accessible only to State authorities’ Here’s how the EU explained its decision to sanction high-level Russian officials over Navalny’s poisoning

        On Thursday, October 15, the European Union imposed sanctions against six senior Russian officials and one scientific research institute in response to the use of a Novichok-type nerve agent to poison opposition figure Alexey Navalny. The new sanctions were announced in the latest volume of the Official Journal of the European Union. The United Kingdom, which is not an EU member state, opted to impose similar sanctions, as well. Here’s what you need to know about who’s on sanctions list and how the EU made this decision.

      • Kremlin spokesman says there’s ‘absolutely no clear logic’ behind the EU’s sanctions over Navalny’s poisoning

        Moscow considers the sanctions that Europe has introduced against a number of Russian officials in response to the poisoning of opposition figure Alexey Navalny a “deliberately unfriendly gesture towards Russia,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told journalists on Thursday, October 15.

      • EU and UK sanction Russian oligarch Evgeny Prigozhin over support for mercenaries in Libya

        The European Union has added Russian oligarch Evgeny Prigozhin to its Libya sanctions list due to his ties to and support of the Wagner Group private military company (PMC), reports the latest volume of the Official Journal of the European Union.

      • Inside Bolivia’s right-wing base on eve of election
      • 5 Foreign Policy Issues to Look Out For in Tonight’s Town Halls

        We must work to end the United States’ role in existing conflicts, repeal the AUMFs, return the powers of warmaking to Congress, and slash the Pentagon budget.

      • Bolivian coup officials and supporters stalk international election observers, launch violent incitement campaign
      • The Art of the Weapons Deal in the Age of Trump

        Look, for example, at the recent “normalization” of relations between the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Israel he helped to broker, which has set the stage for yet another surge in American arms exports. To hear Trump and his supporters tell it, he deserves a Nobel Peace Prize for the deal, dubbed “the Abraham Accords.” In fact, using it, he was eager to brand himself as “Donald Trump, peacemaker” in advance of the November election. This, believe me, was absurd on the face of it. Until the pandemic swept everything in the White House away, it was just another day in Trump World and another example of the president’s penchant for exploiting foreign and military policy for his own domestic political gain.

      • Afghanistan: 19 Years of War

        Peace talks between the Taliban, Mujaheddin, Afghan Government and US have been slowly unfolding over the last 2 years. Mainly taking place in the city of Doha, Qatar, the talks consisted predominantly of older male leaders who have been trying to kill one another for the last 30 years. The Taliban almost certainly have the upper hand, as after 19 years of fighting 40 of the richest nations on the planet, they now control at least two thirds of the country’s population, claim to have an endless supply of suicide bombers, and have most recently managed to secure a controversial deal with the US for the release of 5,000 Taliban prisoners. All along the Taliban have been confident of the long game despite the US initial 2001 promise to defeat the Taliban.

        Most ordinary Afghans hold out little hope for the peace talks, accusing the negotiators of being disingenuous. Kabul resident 21-year-old Naima says:

      • How a Future Biden White House Can End the War in Yemen

        Biden has recently stated that under his leadership he would end U.S. support for Saudi military intervention in Yemen, a move supported by Congress, and reassess the current close U.S.-Saudi relationship.

      • Trump Claims — and Celebrates — Extrajudicial Killing of Antifa Activist

        Reinoehl’s killing has come under new scrutiny in recent days after a pair of investigations questioned whether law enforcement officers identified themselves or did actually attempt to arrest Reinoehl before firing dozens of shots at him, as well as whether Reinoehl in fact “produced a firearm” as claimed in September by Attorney General Bill Barr, who went out of his way to “applaud” federal agents for having “this violent agitator removed.” Multiple witnesses told reporters the officers did not identify themselves and started firing at Reinoehl as soon as they rolled up in two SUVs outside an apartment building in Lacy, Washington, where Reinoehl was hiding out. After he was killed, investigators reportedly found a handgun still in Reinoehl’s pocket, and the officers on the scene have now given differing accounts as to whether he raised the gun, with two of them saying that he did not, according to The New York Times.

      • Trump Appears to Admit Extrajudicial Killing of Michael Reinoehl Was Planned

        President Donald Trump made alarming remarks on Thursday regarding the police-perpetrated killing of Michael Forest Reinoehl in early September, suggesting to a crowd of supporters that his death was premeditated.

      • Prepare for War, Xi Jinping Tells Elite Chinese Troops

        Chinese President Xi Jinping called on his country’s elite fighting troops to focus on “preparing for war” during an inspection of the People’s Liberation Army Marine Corps on Tuesday.

    • Environment

      • Fossil fuels are rapidly losing favour with investors

        From leading the market 20 years ago the big fossil fuels companies are plunging in value, as investors turn to renewables.

      • Democrats Should Stop Worrying About Debating Climate Change

        It’s February 2021. President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris have just been inaugurated, a new cabinet’s been sworn in, and Democrats have reclaimed their majority in the US Senate. There’s a palpable sense of relief in the air, but also a real sense of urgency, because a legislative fight is already underway over a green stimulus bill. Leadership didn’t give activists everything they wanted, but the bill would create millions of jobs and prevent a recession while also scaling up renewable energy and building the clean energy economy of the future. It would represent a massive step forward for climate justice, which is why Exxon Mobil and Chevron are running ads on the airwaves of newly elected freshman members in swing districts. In Pennsylvania, the ads accuse Democrats of destroying fracking jobs. Elsewhere, they say Democrats will raise the price of gas and the cost of household plastics. All of which will stack on top of the predictable Fox News onslaught heralding the end of meat, the internal combustion engine, airplane travel, and freedom.

      • Environmentalists sound alarm over Barrett’s climate change comments

        Joseph Goffman, executive director of Harvard Law’s Environmental and Energy Law Program, warned that if the clean energy rule case made it to the Supreme Court, industry briefings on the power plant rule could lead to questions on a court precedent that established the EPA’s authority to regulate greenhouse gas emissions.

      • Biden’s Treasury Could Fight Climate Change, But Would Lael Brainard’s?

        Biden’s choice for Treasury Secretary is arguably among his most important climate policy decisions.

      • Journalists Must Demystify The Green New Deal

        Rather than contributing to an environment in which the words “Green New Deal” are treated as a political liability, good journalism should assess both candidates’ plans on their merits and inform the public accordingly.

      • Energy

    • Finance

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • The queen of theater ‘Proekt’ profiles Ksenia Sobchak, the socialite who’s made a fortune trading on her name and gaming Russian politics

        Whatever you think about her, Ksenia Sobchak is one of the most recognizable women in Russian society today. The daughter of Vladimir Putin’s mentor, a television celebrity, a sometimes politician, and a wealthy business owner, Sobchak has managed to remain present in both Russia’s opposition and the national mainstream, mixing activism, journalism, and campaigning in ways that few others can. According to a new investigative report written by Olga Churakova and Mikhail Rubin, published by the website Proekt, perhaps the one constant in Sobchak’s career is her capacity to profit from her public prominence and fortuitous parentage. Meduza summarizes the report’s key findings below.

      • ‘I am not holding on to power’ Kyrgyzstan’s president resigns amid ongoing opposition protests

        President of Kyrgyzstan Sooronbay Jeenbekov has announced his resignation. In a statement issued on the afternoon of Thursday, October 15, he said the main reason for his resignation was fear that the confrontation between protesters and law enforcement agencies could escalate to the point that the latter would use weapons. “I am not holding on to power. I don’t want to remain in the history of Kyrgyzstan as a president who shed blood and shot at his own citizens,” Jeenbekov said. In light of Jeenbekov stepping down, the parliament’s speaker Kanabet Isayev — who was elected to this role just two days ago — has become acting president.

      • Political Corruption in Illinois: the Case of Michael Madigan and Commonwealth Edison

        Fast forward one year to July 2020 and the Justice Department drops a bombshell.

        Commonwealth Edison, the largest electric utility in Illinois, will pay $200 million to resolve a federal criminal investigation into a years-long bribery scheme.

      • A Red Zone Grows in Brooklyn

        No area in the world, including in Israel, is more diversely Jewish than Brooklyn’s Ocean Parkway. Along its roughly five-mile course from Prospect Park to Coney Island live Jewish communities with roots in the Caucasus, North Africa, the Middle East, Central Asia, and Eastern Europe. People speak English, Yiddish, and Hebrew—but also half a dozen forms of Arabic (both Jewish and non-Jewish varieties), Russian, Persian, Azeri, and Uzbek. Some speak smaller, endangered Jewish languages such as Juhuri, Bukhori, Ladino, and Judeo-Shirazi. Many are refugees, or the children or grandchildren of refugees—survivors of persecution, displacement, and in some cases genocide. Compared to most American Jews, they are much more religiously and communally engaged, following many different traditions and leaders.

      • “Garbage Fire” Hunter Biden Exposé Riddled With Flaws

        The Rupert Murdoch-owned New York Post published a series of stories on Tuesday surrounding alleged emails between Hunter Biden and officials connected with the Ukrainian energy company Burisma, which the outlet obtained from a source who met multiple times over the last year with an individual whom the U.S. Treasury Department has sanctioned as an active agent of Russia.

      • State of the Union

        White-tailed deer, and bears How many are out there On shoulders of highways Shredded to pieces by cars

        Dead birds litter boulevards

      • Millions of Mail-In Votes Have Already Been Cast in Battleground States. Track Their Progress Here.

        ProPublica, in partnership with The Guardian, is today releasing a tracker for mail-in ballots in battleground states.

        An unprecedented number of Americans are voting by mail this year to avoid COVID-19 risk. Democrats have said they’re more likely to vote by mail while Republicans say they’re more likely to vote in person. With postal delays, rejected ballots and a dearth of funding, the process isn’t always smooth — ballots can be rejected for multiple reasons, and due to court challenges election rules are changing even while voting is underway. Meanwhile, President Donald Trump and other Republican officials have spent the last months casting doubt on the mail-in voting process, likely paving the way for additional legal battles during the vote count.

      • California Republicans Double Down on Defying Order to Cease and Desist Deployment of Bogus Ballot Boxes

        “Let me be clear: unofficial, unauthorized ballot drop boxes are not permitted by state law,” said California’s secretary of state.

      • The United States of Paranoia

        From the Salem witch hunt to conspirator-in-chief Donald Trump

      • ‘Craven Ratings Stunt:’ NBC Rebuked for Booking Trump Town Hall Opposite Biden’s on Rival ABC

        Calls for #NBCblackout on Thursday night after network accused of “caving to the Trumpian impulses the network helped hone.”

      • Democracy Dies in the Light

        The Trump presidency has overturned many norms of democracy, but one of his most dangerous moves is the weaponization of the powers of government against his political opponents. He’s never shied away from talk of it—as the ubiquitous chants of “Lock her up” at his 2016 rallies made clear—but as the 2020 election nears, Trump’s tolerance for democratic checks on his power has eroded dramatically, and he has openly  pressured his cabinet members to use the levers of state power to target his opponents and aid his re-election.

      • Trump is Toast. Will He Take the Entire GOP Down With Him?

        Of course there will be Trump die-hards wailing and gnashing their teeth over that prediction, but just ask yourself: Do you really need or want another presidential debate? The last one was a disaster. The president was rude, ignored the debate rules, interrupted both Biden and the moderator over a hundred times and should have been muted — which I’m sure much of the audience would have appreciated.

        Truth is there probably won’t be a second debate thanks to Trump’s self-inflicted Covid-19 infection. Whining that “they cut you off whenever they want” he’s refusing to abide by the Commission on Presidential Debates medically prudent decision to hold a virtual debate to avoid exposing staff, the moderator, and Biden to potentially lethal Covid-19.

      • How the Christian Right Won the Culture Wars

        Americans have never been comfortable with sex. The notion of sex as a sin, something forbidden, has been an aspect of American social life since the country’s founding four centuries ago. The Puritan minister, Samuel Willard (1640-1707), once observed, “… in nothing doth the raging power of original sin more discover itself … than in the ungoverned exorbitancy of fleshly lust.”

        The Puritan’s moralistic legacy drags on. In the last two centuries, the nation witnessed four “culture wars” – in the 1840s, accompanying the Second Awakening; in the 1910s, culminating in Prohibition; in the 1950s, reflecting Cold War McCarthyism; and in the 1970s, a rejection of 1960s counterculture.

      • Amy Coney Barrett Says Climate Change Is a “Very Contentious Matter”

        We air highlights from the second day of questioning of President Trump’s Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett, who faced eight hours of questions on Wednesday about her views on issues ranging from climate change to voting rights to gay marriage and abortion, as Republicans race to confirm her ahead of the election and secure a 6-3 majority on the Supreme Court for conservatives.

      • ‘Roe v. Wade’ Is Nonnegotiable

        Is it time to bid farewell to Roe v. Wade? If Amy Coney Barrett is seated on the Supreme Court, as seems likely, she will be the sixth anti-abortion justice. That means John Roberts’s respect for precedent, which last summer led him to strike down restrictions on clinics because they were identical to those the court struck down in 2016, won’t matter. He can play the dignified centrist while the other five tip Roe into the grave. Of course, they might leave it technically in force while approving every restriction that crosses their desks. That would be the politically clever thing to do, because it would keep anti-abortion voters riled up while lulling into complacency the many pro-choicers who don’t read beyond the headlines. “Court Upholds Roe” will be what they take in, not “Court OKs Barbecuing Louisiana Abortion Docs.”

      • Lindsey Graham Just ‘Committed a Crime in Plain Sight’

        South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham is a desperate man. So desperate that he broke the law on Wednesday by explicitly soliciting campaign donations in the halls of a federal building.

      • Graham Tells Democrats, “Y’all Have a Good Chance of Winning the White House”

        During the confirmation hearings for Supreme Court nominee Judge Amy Coney Barrett, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) seemed to acknowledge that President Donald Trump, his own party’s nominee, was far from guaranteed to win a second presidential term.

      • Lindsey Graham Called Out for Illegal Campaign Soliciting in Senate Building

        Locked in a tight race with Democratic opponent Jamie Harrison, Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham on Wednesday urged South Carolinians who are “excited about Judge Barrett” to contribute to his reelection campaign — a blatant violation of U.S. law barring members of Congress from soliciting donations while inside federal buildings.

      • ‘This Is Unprecedented’: Lindsey Graham Openly Violates Committee Rules to Schedule Vote on Barrett Nomination

        “Senator Graham just further proved the illegitimacy of this sham process by again breaking the rules to ram through a justice to rip away healthcare from millions in the middle of a pandemic.”

      • ‘A Crime in Plain Sight’: Lindsey Graham Under Fire for Soliciting Campaign Donations in Senate Building

        “Senator Graham might need a lawyer.”

      • Columbus Day in Pretend America

        Slave trade? Genocide? Armageddon? Never heard of it!

      • Tree of Knowledge
      • Bully on the Bench: the Legacy of Scalia

        There was something of an uproar over the lack of an autopsy for Scalia’s ravaged body. Quick-draw conspiracists alleged the portly associate justice was murdered to give Obama a chance to realign the Supreme Court. These creative thinkers seem not to have paid much attention to the bleak presence of Elena Kagan on the bench. There’s no mystery about Scalia’s death. A three- pack a day man for most of his life, Scalia was clearly offed by his friends in the tobacco industry, whose murderous enterprise he zealously guarded in his legal opinions. And they say there’s no justice.

        It’s not Scalia’s corpse that needed dissecting, but the true nature and quality of his jurisprudence. From the Weekly Standard to the Washington Post, Scalia was lionized as a “titanic legal thinker,” who possessed a blistering prose style and a wit “worthy of Swift.” Even more bizarrely, the praise for Scalia’s alleged brilliance was advanced by Beltway liberals, such as former Obama White House counsel Cass Sunstein (spouse of the odious Samantha Power) who asserted that Scalia was “witty, warm, funny and full of life. He was not only one of the most important justices in the nation’s history; he was also one of the greatest.” This curious assessment would have surprised former Chief Justice William Rehnquist, who for years sternly refused to assign any major court ruling to Scalia because he feared Scalia’s mad legal theories and nasty prose style would undermine the standing of the court.

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      • This Supercut Shows Just How Bizarre a Single Trump Fox Interview Can Be

        Here’s a rundown of some of the wild things the president said: [...]

      • Intelligence officials warned Trump that Giuliani was target of Russian influence campaign: report

        Four former officials familiar with the matter told the Post that the intelligence officers were worried that the president’s personal lawyer was being used to pass Russian misinformation to Trump.

        The intelligence community reportedly learned of the campaign through multiple sources, including intercepted communications, that determined Giuliani was communicating with people tied to Russian intelligence during his 2019 trip to Ukraine.

      • Facebook, Twitter’s handling of New York Post article raises election night concerns

        The manner in which both social media giants handled such a divisive news story so late in the presidential campaign is raising questions about how tech companies will evaluate a high volume of information, and potentially misinformation, on Election Day.

      • YouTube Follows Facebook in Banning QAnon, But With Caveats

        YouTube’s ban is an attempt to stamp out the conspiracy without hindering the massive volume of news and political commentary on its service. Rather than a blanket prohibition of QAnon videos or accounts, YouTube is expanding its hate and harassment policies to include conspiracies that “justify real-world violence,” the company said on Thursday.

      • Fifteen important things to say about Facebook, Twitter, and the New York Post’s Hunter Biden story

        This is a complicated saga, and almost nobody involved comes out looking good. But it illustrates some very obvious problems with political discourse, social media, and how information works on the internet.

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • DOJ Is Suing Melania Trump’s Ex-Friend Over Her Book, Despite Never Being A Government Employee

        On Tuesday, the Justice Department sued Stephanie Winston Wolkoff, a former close friend of the First Lady, Melania Trump, who recently published a book about her relationship with Melania, including revealing phone conversations that Wolkoff had recorded.

      • Canadian TV Network Sued After ‘Falsely Accusing’ Independent News Site Of Being Part Of Russian Cyber Operation

        Consortium News, which frequently covers WikiLeaks and various whistleblower stories, has sued Global News for “falsely accusing” the media organization of “being part of a cyber-influence campaign directed by Russia.”As the lawsuit [PDF] filed in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia indicates, on December 10, 2019, Global News allegedly spread “false, unfair, and inaccurate statements” that held Consortium News “up to scorn, ridicule, and contempt in the industry.”The statements suggested Consortium News was responsible for “grossly unethical behavior, dishonesty, lack of integrity, conspiracy,” and the organization was unfit to publish in the news media.During January, libel notices were sent to Global News and the Communications Security Establishment (CSE). The notices demanded a retraction of any mention of Consortium News as well as an apology.Consortium News editor-in-chief Joe Lauria said at the time, “We’ve been targeted before, but never in this most overt way by a named powerful Five Eyes intelligence agency and a major television station.”

        Global News reported on “secret intelligence records” they obtained and claimed the files showed Russia as a “hostile foreign state” that targeted Canada with “cyber influence” campaigns.

      • Blatant Hypocrite Ajit Pai Decides To Move Forward With Bogus, Unconstitutional Rulemaking On Section 230

        For years, FCC Chair Ajit Pai has insisted that the thing that was most important to him was to have a “light touch” regulatory regime regarding the internet. He insisted that net neutrality (which put in place a few limited rules to make sure internet access was fair) was clearly a bridge too far, and had to be wiped out or it would destroy investment into internet infrastructure (he was wrong about that). But now that Section 230 is under attack, he’s apparently done a complete reversal. He is now happy to open a proceeding to reinterpret Section 230 to place a regulatory burden on the internet. This is because Ajit Pai is a hypocrite with no backbone, and no willingness to stand up to a grandstanding President.

      • FCC Chairman Ajit Pai Will “Clarify” Section 230 Protections

        Section 230 became effective in 1996 and is designed to shield “interactive computer service” providers from liability for comments posted by third parties on their platforms. So, if someone defames FCC Chairman Ajit Pai on Twitter he can sue the person who wrote the tweet but not Twitter itself, for example. The text reads, “No provider or user of an interactive computer service shall be treated as the publisher or speaker of any information provided by another information content provider.”

      • FCC will move to regulate social media after censorship outcry

        Pai’s decision to move forward with rulemaking follows a series of moderation decisions on Wednesday made by Facebook and Twitter against a New York Post article regarding former Vice President Joe Biden’s son, Hunter Biden, who has been the subject of political attacks from the right throughout the 2020 presidential election. Facebook reduced the reach of the story, saying that it was eligible for third-party fact-checking. Twitter went even further, banning linking to the story entirely. In a thread Wednesday night, Twitter cited a 2018 rule against posting hacked information as justification for its decision.

        These moves from Facebook and Twitter incited an outcry over conservative bias from Republicans. On Thursday, Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee signaled that they would subpoena Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey to testify about the decision at a hearing on October 23rd.

    • Freedom of Information/Freedom of the Press

      • Progressives Warn Against Accepting—Let Alone Applauding—Twitter Ban of “Garbage” NY Post Story

        “Look carefully at what Twitter is saying to justify censoring the Biden story. If applied consistently, it’d mean that some of history’s most consequential journalism—the Pentagon Papers, WikiLeaks’ war logs, Snowden docs, Panama Papers, our Brazil Archive—would be banned.”

      • Vietnam Seeks to Further Limit Press

        Since January, Vietnam has arrested about 20 journalists, publishers and social media users over critical content; demanded that Facebook agree to censor “anti-state” posts; issued a one-month publishing ban on the news website Phu Nu Online over its investigations into environmental damage; and, last week, arrested prominent blogger and democracy activist Pham Doan Trang.

      • ‘Persecuting Assange Is a Real Blow to Reporting and Human Rights Advocacy’

        Janine Jackson interviewed Defending Rights & Dissent’s Chip Gibbons about Julian Assange’s extradition hearing for the October 9, 2020, episode of CounterSpin. This is a lightly edited transcript.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

      • Verizon’s New ‘Nationwide’ 5G Isn’t Nationwide, Barely Faster Than 4G

        While unveiling its shiny new 5G-enabled iPhones this week, Apple brought Verizon CEO Hans Vestberg to the stage to declare that Verizon had launched an updated, “nationwide” 5G network that shores up the company’s 5G coverage. Until now, Verizon has largely embraced “high band” or millimeter wave 5G, which provides amazing speeds if you’re near an antenna, but suffers from terrible range and building wall penetration issues. As a result, the company has been routinely criticized for comically overstating not only what 5G is capable of, but where 5G is available.

      • Ted Cruz Once Insisted That Net Neutrality Was The Gov’t Takeover Of The Internet; Now Demands That Twitter Host All Nonsense

        I guess Senator Ted Cruz was getting jealous of Senator Josh Hawley for monopolizing the “I’m a constitutional lawyer who doesn’t understand the 1st Amendment when it comes to internet content moderation” space, and has jumped in as well. He has announced that he’s going to issue a subpoena to get Jack Dorsey to come justify what he falsely claims is “election interference.”

    • Digital Restrictions (DRM)

      • Facebook is accidentally locking some users out of their new Oculus headsets

        As UploadVR reported yesterday, users complained that they had been suspended for unclear reasons while they were trying to set up the Quest 2. One poster on the Oculus subreddit, for instance, described getting banned after creating a Facebook page for the first time and merging it with an existing Oculus account. “I logged into Facebook’s website to lock down my profile, as I had no intention of using the social media site more than was needed, and within minutes of merging accounts and changing profile settings my account was banned without any reason given or cause I can think of,” the user told The Verge in an email — rendering the Quest 2 a “new white paperweight.” Other people in the subreddit chimed in with their own experiences getting locked out.

      • Games Piracy Scene Reinvigorated, Four Denuvo-Protected Titles Released in One Day

        Late August the piracy Scene was thrown into turmoil when law enforcement raids took place all around Europe. With few hopes of a significant recovery any time soon, in the space of a few minutes yesterday veteran cracking group CPY released four games previously protected by Denuvo. For many pirates, this is the positive signal they’d been waiting for.

    • Monopolies

      • YouTube bans QAnon, other conspiracy content that targets individuals

        YouTube’s move to rid the platform of QAnon content follows similar recent changes by other social media platforms. In July, Twitter removed QAnon accounts and restricted QAnon content. Last week, Facebook said it would remove groups, pages and Instagram accounts that identified with QAnon.

      • How Modi is Changing Laws to Help Imperialists Dominate India’s Agriculture

        Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, of course, has been claiming that the state is not leaving peasants at the mercy of the monopsonists and that the government-guaranteed minimum support price (MSP) regime will continue. But the bills contain nothing on this; and the government refuses to incorporate into law, which testifies to its bad faith, the right of the peasantry to get a minimum support price in accordance with the Swaminathan Commission recommendation that puts the MSP at Cost C2 plus 50 percent. The peasants in short are being thrown, as under colonialism, to the mercies of a market where price fluctuations have a notoriously high amplitude; and they are rightly putting up a fight against their descent into debt and destitution.

        In this entire debate, however, an important dimension has been missed. The debate has been entirely about the condition of the peasantry. But one must also take into account the question of food security, which immediately brings imperialism into the picture.

      • Patents

        • Is Battery Innovation Driving the Transition to Clean Energy? [Ed: More EPO greenwashing, even weeks down the line]
        • OSE Immunotherapeutics : Receives European Patent Notice of Allowance for First-in-Class CD28-Antagonist Immunotherapy FR104

          OSE Immunotherapeutics (ISIN: FR0012127173; Mnemo: OSE) announced the European Patent Office’s (EPO) issuance of a notice of allowance for its Phase-2 ready product FR104, a first-in-class selective CD28-antagonist.

          Specifically, this European patent will provide additional protection covering novel dosing regimen of FR104 for the prevention and treatment of T-lymphocyte-mediated autoimmune diseases, inflammatory diseases, transplantation and graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) until 2036.

        • German government further strengthens the GPTO – and what’s in it for you [Ed: Well, the word "strengthens" is misleading. It's when lawyers and litigation frenzy people call it when they make more money.]

          Despite the popularity of the European Patent Office (EPO), the German government has devoted significant resources to German Patent and Trademark Office (GPTO). Answering to a request from members of the German Parliament, the German government commits to further increase spending in the future.

          A perfect excuse for us to look at why, despite the perceived dominance of the EPO, the GPTO is still a viable option. And why it just might be the right choice for your next patent application if you expect litigation in Germany.

          To many applicants seeking protection for their innovation in Europe, the EPO is the first choice that comes to mind. The EPO allows applicants to file a single application and obtain a bundle of patents for each member state including highly relevant countries like Germany, UK, the Netherlands, and France.
          At the same time, the member states of the EPO maintain their respective national patent offices, in Germany it is the GPTO, which grants German patents.

      • Trademarks

        • Microsoft Wields Its IP For Good, Cripples Botnet Via Trademark Litigation

          Microsoft developed a bit of a reputation as a trademark bully during the early 00s, going after an Australian pillow manufacturer (for its polyester fiber “Microsoft” quilt) and a 17-year-old Canadian named Mike Rowe (for his MikeRoweSoft website business). It seems to have settled down on the bullying but it still wields its trademarks with considerable heft. Krebs on Security reports Microsoft recently leveraged its trademarks to severely cripple a botnet.

        • What’s a fiduciary duty got to do with it? Lawyers, successive parties, and confidentiality

          Following a recent guest post on Singaporean developments in the law of confidence, this Kat is now turning to a similar scenario considered by the Court of Appeal (England & Wales). In Glencairn v Final Touch [2020] EWCA Civ 609, the Court upheld the decision of the Intellectual Property Enterprise Court to refuse to find the existence of a true fiduciary duty between a solicitor and an opposing party in circumstances where the firm acted for separate successive parties against that same opponent.


          In December 2018, Glencairn engaged in confidential mediation with Dartington, by which point the law firm representing the defendants decided to set up an information barrier between its teams working on the Dartington and Final Touch matters. The three solicitors participating in the mediation on Dartington’s behalf, none of whom went on to act for Final Touch, all signed a confidentiality agreement. The barrier included measures such as maintaining separate teams, one in Leeds and the other in London, and encrypting electronic files.

          Glencairn and Dartington subsequently reached a settlement dated 8 January 2019, which included a confidentiality clause binding on the parties, though not their respective solicitors. Glencairn’s solicitors asked the law firm to stop acting for Final Touch in February 2019 and in March 2019 applied for injunctive relief given their refusal to do so. It contended that Final Touch could gain an advantage if they became aware of confidential information which might have arisen in the course of the Dartington negotiations.

        • Time to Add the Discrimination Dimension to Grounds of Refusal for Trademark Registration? | SpicyIP

          Against this backdrop, I am prompted to underscore the need for amending section 9(2) of the Trade Marks Act, 1999, which currently lists grounds for refusal of registration of a TM. These grounds include (i) scandalous and obscene matter, (ii) matter that is likely to hurt religious sentiments, (iii) those that cause public deception or confusion, and (iv) use that is prohibited under the Emblems and Names (Prevention of Improper Use) Act. 1950.


          Given the lack of Indian case law on the subject, I refer to foreign jurisprudence dealing with this issue, albeit tangentially. In Pro-Football, Inc. v. Blackhorse, 112 F. Supp. 3d 439 (E.D. Va. 2015) a few native Americans petitioned for cancellation of the registrations of TM ‘Redskin’ and its 5 other variants, claiming that the marks had disparaged native Americans and brought them to contempt or disrepute (on the basis of their appearance/skin-colour). The six trademarks were registered and being used by the Washington Redskins football team.

          In a complicated litigation, in 2014, the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) of the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) stated that the TM ‘Redskin’ and its variants were disparaging to Native Americans and that their registrations should be cancelled. In an appeal by Pro-Football, the appellate court affirmed the cancellation.’

          The term ‘Fair’ in ‘Fair and Lovely’ TM produces a similar effect by characterizing any other colour as undesirable, unpleasant or contemptuous and hence projects a singular idea of beauty on the basis of skin colour.

          Notably, the TM jurisprudence of the USA uses the expression ‘offensive’ for both discriminatory and obscene marks. So, ‘Redskins’ is categorised as racially offensive, while ‘FUCT’ (referenced below) is simply offensive. The language of India’s Trade Marks Act, is different because under section 9(2), the Act does take care of scandalous and obscene marks but not those that are discriminatory in nature. The word ‘offensive’ is not used.

        • Banana Republic is Being Sued for Allegedly Co-Opting Designer’s Stylized Ampersand

          Banana Republic is being sued over a typeface – or to be more specific, it is being sued for allegedly co-opting a typeface-specific ampersand. In a newly-filed complaint, Moshik Nadav Typography LLC – an “innovative typography and graphic design business” – alleges that the Gap-owned retailer has “engaged in an extraordinary, large-scale and widespread commercial use” of the little “and” symbol from its “distinctive and unique” Paris Pro typeface in an “extensive digital marketing” campaign, as well as on its “worldwide social media platforms.”

          According to the complaint, which it filed in a New York federal court on Tuesday, Brooklyn-based Moshik Nadav Typography LLC (“Moshik Nadav”) claims that in 2012 in furtherance of its business of designing and licensing “artistic typefaces, and logotypes in digital formats for headlines in fashion magazines, as well as logos for luxury and high-end brands,” it created “a distinctive and unique artistic typeface font” called “Paris Pro.” Part of the Paris Pro typeface – which Moshik Nadav says “has a specific artistic expression that showcases [Mr.] Nadav’s creativity as a graphic designer and typographer” – is a stylized ampersand.

      • Copyrights

        • Dutch ISPs Must Block Pirate Bay Proxies and Mirrors Again, Court Rules

          Dutch ISPs Ziggo, KPN and XS4ALL must block access to Pirate Bay mirrors and proxy sites. This latest verdict is part of a prolonged legal battle that started over a decade ago. The ISPs already blocked sites in the past but lifted the measures recently, because a previous court order no longer applied. In court, they argued that the blocks are ineffective but without result.

        • Licensing sounds from the BBC – contract terms

          The BBC has recently announced that it is making available 16,000 sound effects from their archive. The terms on which they make these sounds available, for non-commercial use, can be found here.

          The sound effects are organised by category, so if you need to create an atmosphere with the noise of Radar, Rickshaws or Sanding Machines, there is a sound effect (or several) for you. Perhaps you might want to liven up your blog? Sadly, there seem to be none under the heading of a lawyer’s office – what a missed opportunity!

          IP Draughts was intrigued by the licensing terms, which can be found at the above link. They are written in a chatty, non-lawyerly style, as if a journalist had written them – but one who has been careful to ensure that the main legal points are covered.

        • How Can Linking to an Article be Immoral When the Media Source Itself Does the Posting?

          The media organizations actively encourage users to link to their articles on Facebook for the obvious reason that it increases traffic to their site and thereby generates ad revenue. Facebook does not charge a referral fee, a posting fee or any other fee in connection with the display of links to the newspaper article. Yet according to Guilbeault, these links (which are often licensed through the terms of service) are somehow immoral and merit a mandated licensing requirement. If enacted, the government would be establishing a regime that would grant news organizations guaranteed payments for their own posts, which helps explain why Facebook has indicated that they are likely to simply stop the linking altogether.

        • Facing 2020 at the CC Global Summit: A Look at This Year’s Keynotes

          One of the unique challenges for this year’s CC Global Summit was to connect events of the past year with our work—and find a path forward in hope and optimism. We asked: How can we best celebrate “open” and continue to foster the culture of gratitude and collaboration that our work and our community brings? How can we link the challenges we’re facing as a planet (e.g. health, human rights, democracy, etc.) with the opportunities for solutions found in creating a more open and free world?

        • We Interrupt This Hellscape With A Bit Of Good News On The Copyright Front

          We’ve written about this case – or rather, these cases – a few times before: Carl Malamud published the entire Code of Federal Regulations at Public.Resource.org, including all the standards that the CFR incorporated and thus gave the force of law. Several organizations that had originally promulgated these various standards then sued Public Resource – in two separate but substantially similar cases later combined – for copyright infringement stemming from his having included them.

IRC Proceedings: Thursday, October 15, 2020

Posted in IRC Logs at 2:43 am by Needs Sunlight



#techrights log

#boycottnovell log



#boycottnovell-social log

#techbytes log

Enter the IRC channels now

You May Need to Stop War to Stop Microsoft

Posted in Free/Libre Software, GNU/Linux, Microsoft at 12:32 am by Guest Editorial Team

Article by figosdev


Summary: “Today, corporations continue to lobby for more extreme copyright and fewer rights for public expression. The government favours the lobbyists, through a system that Lessig concedes (in a speech at Dartmouth University) is essentially legalised bribery.”

We all (alright, lots of us) have our projects outside of free software. That’s of necessity if free software is to meet its goal of all software being free; there will have to be enough (free) software not just for the things the GNU Project thinks are necessary, but for all the software needs of everybody, everywhere.

But a number of us are anti-war, I’m not vegetarian but Roy is, so he has that. I would rather support the SPCA than PETA, but even I support PETA’s campaign to reduce suffering in livestock deaths. The methods often used are gruesome and inhumane, and there is a tradition going back thousands of years of trying to reduce or eliminate the suffering of livestock used for food. PETA supports this, and so do I.

“How is it possible to “steal” software that is free for everyone? The answer is to take it and make it less free.”Now if we are going to go out of our way to eliminate (as much as possible) the suffering of livestock, I don’t have the answers for granting the same mercy for our own species. But one thing that may be necessary for the survival of humanity itself, is the elimination of war.

To most people, the idea of eliminating war is a joke, at least in practical terms. The simple answer to that is we aren’t going to eliminate “war” if we define it in the broadest terms possible. If we can’t hope to eliminate all things that could be called “war” then the next thing would be to figure out what the bulk of the problem is, and if that is a problem that humanity can fix.

This isn’t a new problem, and the efforts to solve it are not new. Since the Vietnam war at the earliest, people have stood up to their governments on matters of warfare. Much earlier than that, Thoreau became a minimalist to avoid supporting war with taxes, inspiring Martin Luther King, Jr. in several ways, who was vocal in his condemnation of the war in Vietnam.

My disenchantment with the so-called “left” (or fake left) grew from my experience in war protests and peace vigils, standing side by side with countless people holding signs for peace and troop withdrawal, most of whom would then go vote for someone with a record of lying about doing the same. You hold signs for peace then go reelect war criminals — to me, that says everything.

This isn’t to say that there isn’t a real left, but one of the things I am fond of saying (because I feel strongly about it) is that Free Software should not be hijacked for other political causes. And that’s necessary to talk about as well.

“That’s how you truly hijack Free Software — you let something else become more important (to Free Software) than Free Software itself.”How is it possible to “steal” software that is free for everyone? The answer is to take it and make it less free. There’s a long discussion that can be had about that, but there won’t be a long discussion about it here — the idea of making things “less free” deserves its own articles, but in this context (at the moment) it’s a side point.

Free Software is for everyone, and to “hijack” it for political causes, would be (it’s extremely important how we define this) not to JOIN Free Software with other causes — because we actually want that — but to redefine Free Software as something based on causes outside it.

That’s how you truly hijack Free Software — you let something else become more important (to Free Software) than Free Software itself.

Of course people will twist this around and say “you’re implying that Free Software is the most important thing in the world” — no, I’m not. RMS doesn’t either — he has addressed this point specifically, saying that there are other extremely important causes and that Free Software is simply the one he is best suited to personally.

So you can have your anti-war Free Software, your animal rights Free Software, your anticapitalist Free Software (even though Free Software isn’t necessarily anticapitalist itself) just as long as you don’t put Free Software into the “back seat” of its own movement. You can put Free Software in the back seat of your own movement — just not its own; that would be hijacking, and people have made a number of efforts to do that.

But although Microsoft works very hard to pretend it isn’t fighting the very existence of Free Software, it may be necessary to stop Microsoft to save Free Software.

“But although Microsoft works very hard to pretend it isn’t fighting the very existence of Free Software, it may be necessary to stop Microsoft to save Free Software.”And you may not be able to stop Microsoft without stopping war.

“But Microsoft is doing badly”, people say. Right, they only control the bulk of Free Software sources. “But financially”… yes, assuming that an economic downturn means the end of Microsoft is a bit like assuming the Great Depression meant the end of the United States. Hubris does not become us, it doesn’t help this movement at all. It has destroyed Trisquel, and arguably the FSF.

Even if Microsoft did fail, which is far too soon to make assumptions about, the particular threat to Free Software this is about comes also from Amazon and Google. At the moment, Microsoft is working harder than Amazon or Google to destroy Free Software, but I think people tend to underestimate these other companies as threats.

Before I go further, I want to point out something about a hero of mine, former FSF board member and Harvard Law professor Lawrence Lessig. I am really not a fan of Creative Commons, but I do love some of their licenses (as well as free culture). CC BY, BY-SA, and CC0 are some of the best licenses in the world — used by Wikipedia, Techrights in many instances, and this article in particular.

Setting out to reform extreme copyright, Lessig joined the Supreme Court case Eldred v. Ashcroft, trying to throw out what he called “perpetual copyright on the installment plan”. The United States Constitution forbids perpetual copyright, and even Britain (which once had it in abundance) has mostly abolished it. Who wants perpetual copyright? Companies that want to seek rent forever on the entire corpus of human culture, even as they make it legally and technically impossible to digitally archive the famous works they accidentally destroy in vaults.

“Today, corporations continue to lobby for more extreme copyright and fewer rights for public expression. The government favours the lobbyists, through a system that Lessig concedes (in a speech at Dartmouth University) is essentially legalised bribery.”Lessig founded Creative Commons to fight what he calls “permission culture”, where corporations have excessive control over human expression (and the concept of “fair use” is a small consolation, but also presently endangered by this culture).

Today, corporations continue to lobby for more extreme copyright and fewer rights for public expression. The government favours the lobbyists, through a system that Lessig concedes (in a speech at Dartmouth University) is essentially legalised bribery.

Note that although Lessig is speaking in terms of the motion picture and music recording industries, this is the same legalised bribery that enables corporations like Microsoft, Google and Facebook to do great evil.

Therefore, in 2008 Lessig founded Change Congress, which became “Fix Congress First”, then “Rootstrikers”, which finally became a project of Demand Progress (an organisation co-founded by Lessig’s friend and compatriot, Aaron Swartz). The goal? To push for separation between Congress and legalised bribery, so that The People could actually have a say in the laws designed to (unconstitutionally) control their expression. Copyright is leaned on heavily as a tool of censorship and against freedom in general, whether we are talking about Eric Eldred or Eric Lundgren.

In 2010, Lessig organised to amend the Constitution to reform election campaign funding. In 2016 on a similar theme, he ran for President of the United States.

“Whether you live in the United States or somewhere else, it is not unlikely that you feel the pull or the sting from the many tentacles of Corporate America or (specifically) Microsoft.”I told Professor Lessig that given how he always moves up and up towards the problem, he should terraform a planet so that it can have better laws. This was said in admiration, as well as commiseration, because the world we live in is deeply corrupt. Whether you live in the United States or somewhere else, it is not unlikely that you feel the pull or the sting from the many tentacles of Corporate America or (specifically) Microsoft.

Which brings us back to the problem of war. Smedley Butler warned of a corporate takeover of the United States in 1933, by the time of Eisenhower’s 1961 farewell address the theme had moved from a simple corporate takeover to “the military-industrial complex”.

I’ve been to Dupont Circle in Washington, DC many times — it is named for Samuel Francis Du Pont (1803–1865), a close relation to the industrialist Éleuthère Paul du Pont de Nemours (1771-1834) who founded DuPont:

“He mentioned that the Remington arms manufacturers would supply the army, thanks to a working relationship with the DuPonts. ‘We need a Fascist government in this country,’ he told the reporter, ‘to save the nation from the communists who want to tear it down and wreck all that we have built in America. The only men who have the patriotism to do it are the soldiers and Smedley Butler is the ideal leader. He could organize a million men overnight.’”

I’m definitely not sure communism is the answer either, but I am completely confident that fascism is NOT. But there is a running theme, whether we are talking about Microsoft, the Record/Film industries, or anybody trying to push for more fascist laws in the United States — and that theme is that failure is not failure; they constantly push for whatever they can get away with, and when they fail, they just keep pushing.

So Biden’s fascist 1995 law was not needed — a (VERY) similar fascist law allowed John Ashcroft (the Attorney General and partial eponym of the SCOTUS case mentioned earlier) and most of Congress to wipe their backsides with the Constitution in October of 2001.

“Thomas J. Watson, having become CEO of the Computing-Tabulating-Recording Company and renaming it to IBM in the same year, was already helping Germany with its “census” of Jews, Gypsies and other groups considered undesirable to Hitler in 1933. Dachau, Hitler’s first concentration camp, had already opened in March of that year.”This theme of corporate takeover was patently illegal (a treasonous plot against FDR and the government itself) in 1933, my question is: is anybody sure it really failed?

The objectives of the plot since its inception have arguably been achieved in ways that early-20th-century industrialists may have only dreamed of.

Just one year later, Hitler (who had already risen to power the year before) was elected president of Germany.

Thomas J. Watson, having become CEO of the Computing-Tabulating-Recording Company and renaming it to IBM in the same year, was already helping Germany with its “census” of Jews, Gypsies and other groups considered undesirable to Hitler in 1933. Dachau, Hitler’s first concentration camp, had already opened in March of that year.

After the war, between 1945 and 1959 — two years before Eisenhower’s farewell address — Operation Paperclip brought over 1,000 scientists including former members and even leaders of the Nazi party to work on rockets and other projects in the United States.

“These companies have long histories of being built up by war crimes, and they have contributed to war crimes.”Consider that next year will be the 20th anniversary of both the 9/11 attacks and the USA PATRIOT Act, which was signed by the fascist in office and (according to himself) authored by the fascist running against him. One of these two fascists will most likely be President of the United States, 20 years after the PATRIOT Act or 26 years after the Omnibus Counterterrorism Act that Biden wrote, or just one year after both Democrats and Trump renewed this most unconstitutional law.

The point of it being 20 years is to demonstrate just how short a time that is. The politicians that we were saddled with 20 (even 26) years ago are still here. Former Vice President (and Halliburton contractor/former CEO) Dick Cheney may not be living on the grounds of the Naval Observatory, Bush Jr. (who Microsoft campaigned for in 2000) is no longer in the White House, though perhaps Joe Biden will be back, with or without Obama or the Clintons.

20 years is also the amount of time between Eisenhower’s warning about the military-industrial complex, and the 1980s, when so many of the rules that hindered modern lobbying were eroded. that’s the exact sort of lobbying and “legalised bribery” that Lessig aims to reverse today.

“I have said for years that a half-billion people doing a partial boycott is more powerful than a half-million people doing a complete boycott.”But whether or not Microsoft gets the JEDI contract or Amazon, whether “Watson” becomes the next SAGE or IBM continues to help the next generation of Nazis, we can dispense with all Dan-Brown-like stories of underground tunnels and secret societies, focusing simply on conventional history and known historical figures, and still say this:

These companies have long histories of being built up by war crimes, and they have contributed to war crimes.

They do not merely lack compassion or lack an interest in our freedom — these are companies that expand global campaigns of death and constantly lobby against human rights.

Unless you make it a part of who you are as a person to not support these corporations, humanity will always be caught up in this level of conflict — until the end.

Now, there people who have covered their mouths for years — not to avoid COVID, but to avoid causing the death of even the tiniest forms of life that they could breathe in. They are beyond vegetarian, and beyond pacifist. I am not one of those people.

When I propose a boycott, if you can boycott something 100% more power to you, I haven’t (deliberately/knowledgably) done any business with Amazon since they created the Kindle, but I know for a fact that in the past decade a purchase or two has slipped under my radar.

I have said for years that a half-billion people doing a partial boycott is more powerful than a half-million people doing a complete boycott. I know you’re not going to get rid of every Windows and Android device — but you can try. And no, this is not just about Free Software — but yes, it is most certainly about Free Software as well.

It’s also about oil. But I don’t have any stock in Tesla, or other “green”/renewables, because a lot of “green”/renewable technology is bunk. Either way, we will run out of oil, so technology will have to adapt. The oil companies have certainly sent us around on a lot of fool’s errands — it was General Butler who said “the flag follows the money, and the troops follow the flag”.

It’s also about weapons. Drone technology poses a great long-term Constitutional crisis, which is of the greatest historical relevance whether you believe in government or not. I know that SOME of the crazy assholes with guns are nazis, and a lot of them are not fascist, but I worry more about nazis with Predator drones than rednecks with rifles. Putting a fascist government in charge of saying who can/can’t have weapons? Maybe not a great idea, as they may decide to favour fascists like themselves in terms of laws and enforcement — though it’s hardly the point of this article.

ABOVE ALL, this is about Industry — industries of control, industries of oppression, industries of death, and the industrial takeover of the world and humanity itself.

That industrial takeover and control is what freedom must stand against.

And the easiest way for those who have answered a personal calling to stand for humanity and against fascism (as well as other forms of oppression) is to STOP SUPPORTING IT.

I couldn’t have made it any clearer than I already have (through this and other writing) that this does not mean we will all agree. We will not all address this exactly the same way. We cannot all have identical priorities — we do not all recognise the same problems in an identical fashion.

I’ve hopefully made it clear also that we do not need to agree on everything. What is vital to humanity is that humans start to make their everyday decisions based on whether they want to support this inhumanity, this industrial enslavement of the mind, of work, of all culture — or whether they want to withdraw their support.

If you want to stop wars that destroy (not in any hyperbolic way) the planet, the ecosystem, the food supply — and that’s even before we get to the senseless killing of children by drones and troops — you must withdraw, SOMETHING.

The more you can withdraw, the better.

Again, this is not just about Free Software, but it is certainly about Free Software as well. Stop supporting Google and Microsoft — whenever you can! Jeff Bezos doesn’t need any more money to treat shipping centre workers like android slaves either.

Stop letting these corporations hijack your freedom of speech, by saying they know more about being anti-racist/anti-bigoted (in the most superficial and ridiculous ways possible) than you do. Most of the people they are pretending to represent DID NOT ASK for their help. They are simply hijacking progress, to make it about letting them have even more control of society. IBM helped find people to exterminate (today, the modern wording is “we kill people based on metadata”) and today they want to be the thought police. Don’t be a sucker!

But whatever you do, understand that the support we lend to these corporations undermines not only our freedom, but humanity itself — human life, human rights, and human potential.

Supporting GIAFAM will always lead to real and profound suffering for some innocent people, no matter how good it looks on the surface.

More broadly, we need to treat other major corporations to the same withdrawal that we need to treat GIAFAM with.

Again, I know this probably doesn’t mean you’re going to stop driving, stop buying chips from Intel (certainly not this year at least) or never eat food from (Gates-connected) Bayer/Monsanto again.

We all are. That’s the world we live in.

If we want to live in a world that’s not fascist, if we want to be free — we must become vigilant.

What we must always look for is EVERY opportunity to make a better choice. We will not be able to make every choice a better choice — we will still make some terrible choices.

But a commitment to our grandchildren (or our grandnephews and grandnieces) is a commitment to our own species (and for some of us, like Roy, other species as well).

If we want a future, we must continue looking for ways to do things differently. Above all, we need to turn away from these fascist, evil corporations — and their endless, extremely well-funded lies about how they are really on our side.

No, they DO NOT care — they’re only killing us all.

Finally, you may think I have some problem with people in the armed forces. I am used to people driving the war machine pretending they care more about the troops than I do. I know some veterans are going to take what I say personally — I’ve spent plenty of time working with veterans. It was Stan Goff who first introduced me (subject-matter-wise) to Smedley Butler, quoting him on the cover of his book.

I met him while protesting the invasion of Iraq. We may always need troops for something, but we do not need conquest — we do not need perpetual war, we do not need all this death for profit.

I don’t fucking care about your WORDS — what are you going to do differently?

Kill, Kill, Kill! Where are the nuclear vessels? Killing for peace is like “fucking for virginity!”

It’s not the WORDS that matter. It’s what you DO.

For the love of humanity, do something — change something — improve something (something actual, something real). Even if all you do is say “no” to one really terrible decision today. That’s a start.

We can’t avoid every single decision that puts humanity on a path to perpetual war, global death, and further exploitation. The way society works is simply too stacked against that.

As it has since 1933 in the United States, fascism will keep pushing.

What we CAN do, is try to find more terrible decisions we can avoid, more terrible things we can withdraw support from, and we can (actually) talk about choices we can make — choices we can live with, without becoming complete pacifists who withdraw entirely from society (because I think VERY few people are going to do that).

That’s what rms has always advocated with regards to computing — that’s what the second wave of Free Software advocates with regards to software — that you think about your freedom and about the implications for society with regards to your computing.

In a broader sense this applies to all technology — I don’t think we can get away from it, but we can (and should) be more selective. How did you ever read ’1984′ in school and still allow an Echo Dot in your home? Why would you read Fahrenheit 451 and own a “smart” TV or buy a KINDLE, which controls the books you purchased and flies in the face of first sale doctrine (your rights that apply to YOUR COPY of practically anything, after purchase)? Why on earth would you ever support that, if you know what it really costs?

These companies give you advances and maybe wealth with one hand, though it’s never yours — with the other hand they take it away. This is not the prosperity of the human race, but the human race on a leash; the “prosperity” goes to those who hold it.

In a still broader sense this applies to humanity itself. And while it’s not the job of Free Software to figure all that all out for you — nor do you WANT it to be (nor does Free Software want that job — that job is really your own) the thing is, if we don’t make this our job, humanity might not have a job anymore.

Freedom most certainly would not exist, except for the efforts of those who consider questions like these. If you want to be more free, if you really want to stand against fascism and the perpetual spread of death and destruction — if you want a future for the human race, you can HELP — by asking yourself these questions more often, and simply giving the best answers you can. Don’t settle, just keep asking yourself and then doing what you can. Nobody is completely removed from this corruption, nobody is as innocent as the day they were born. We are all part of this mess, but we can reduce and try to minimise our role in it — by simply, metaphorically and fundamentally walking away from the worst of it. Doing that could save humanity.

Everybody can help stand against these evils. Well, alright — maybe not GIAFAM. And probably not Bayer, Halliburton or DuPont. But then again — those aren’t people. It’s far closer to the truth to say those are anti-people. This is one situation where it’s perfectly okay to say “It’s time to choose what side you’re on”. But it is still up to YOU, just what that means. Don’t expect to be sheltered from others calling for reform though — that’s a problem that is only making all of this worse. We may not all agree, but silence (and censorship) isn’t the answer.

Long live rms, withdraw your support from true fascist evil, and happy hacking.

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