Links 13/7/2021: GNOME Gingerblue 0.6.0, Microsoft Breaking the Law

Posted in News Roundup at 10:45 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • Destination Linux 314: The Audacity of Muse Group & Garuda Linux Interview

        This week’s episode of Destination Linux, we have an exciting interview lined up for you, with Nico from Garuda Linux. Then we cover the controversial situation around the audio editor, Audacity, and their new desktop privacy policy. Plus we’ve also got our famous tips, tricks and software picks. All of this and so much more this week on Destination Linux. So whether you’re brand new to Linux and open source or a guru of sudo. This is the podcast for you.

      • Dual Licence: Why Corporate Loves “Free Software”

        Dual Licensing is a very poorly understood way that corporations can undermine Free Software, no one really talks about it but they should. This allows for maintainers to take what looks like Free Software and take it proprietary without breaking any rules. but it’s not all bad.

      • Late Night Linux – Episode 133 – Late Night Linux

        A quick look at Fedora Silverblue, your feedback including scanning and iOS vs Android, and FOSS devs actually making mony with guest Daniel Foré.

      • Going Linux #410 · 4 Ways to use Office on Linux

        One of the many reasons people resist switching to an Open Source operating system (Linux) is a need to use the Microsoft Office suite. In this episode we discuss some of the most popular ways of running an office suite on Linux short of running a full copy of Windows and Office in a virtual machine.

      • BRAVE + BRAVE SEARCH: is it the king of web browsing now?

        I’d like to take a look at a browser that I’ve been starting to like more and more: Brave. They opened up their own search engine recently, in beta, and their browser has always been billed as a very privacy focused solution. So let’s take a look at the browser itself, and the search engine, and see if this combo is deserving of the web browser crown

    • Kernel Space

      • Linux 5.14 Features From Secret Memory Areas To New Hardware, Core Scheduling, Legacy IDE Dropped – Phoronix

        With last night’s release of Linux 5.14-rc1 the merge window is officially over for this next version of the Linux kernel. With that, here is a look at the highlights for the forthcoming Linux 5.14 kernel based upon our original reporting during the merge window.

        Linux 5.14 was another busy cycle with seeing changes like a new tracer for operating system noise, memfd_secret for allowing secret memory areas on the system, many CPU/architecture-related updates, core scheduling for allowing better security with Intel Hyper Threading, many open-source graphics driver improvements for Intel and AMD, removal of legacy IDE support, and much more.

      • Linux Plumbers Conference: File system Microconference Accepted into 2021 Linux Plumbers Conference

        We are pleased to announce that the File System Microconference has been accepted into the 2021 Linux Plumbers Conference. File systems are key to any operating system, and especially for the Linux kernel. They are the gateway to the underling storage, or could simply live in RAM as a virtual information repository. The file system developers are constantly adding features and improvements. Some of these new features are slow to be utilized by the application developers, or they may be used in interesting ways that the file system developers never thought of.

      • Intel Gets Back To Years-Long Journey Upstreaming PECI – Phoronix

        Intel open-source engineers are back around with a new take on introducing a PECI subsystem for the Linux kernel to ultimately make their Xeon servers more attractive and friendly for OpenBMC usage.

        PECI is the Platform Environment Control Interface and is for communication between Intel Xeon processors and BMCs / management controllers. The patches being worked on by Intel would bring-up a PECI subsystem within the kernel for managing this communication interface and provide various Intel drivers for PECI devices. The focus of this mainline support is to enhance the support for OpenBMC on Intel servers for that open-source BMC software stack that is Linux-based and in turn would benefit from mainline PECI support.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • [Short Tip] Executing a subshell in Nushell – /home/liquidat

        I just run through a howto where I was asked to execute a command which used the command output from a subshell as an argument for another command.

      • [Short Tip] Get data type in Nushell
      • How to Install and Configure Mutt With Gmail on Linux

        Sending emails from the Linux terminal is necessary, especially when you’re automating emails using a shell script. Email programs like Thunderbird and Evolution might seem like the go-to tools, but they can feel bloated at times. If you are comfortable working with the command line, it might be beneficial for you to send/receive emails via Linux’s very own heart system.

        You can configure Gmail and other email clients within Linux to access your mailbox, send emails, and respond to emails from the terminal directly. To access your mailbox, you will first need to configure Mutt, which will make things easier for you in the long run.

      • How to Configure Firewall with FirewallD

        Firewalld is a firewall management tool which acts as a front-end for the Linux kernel’s netfilter framework. Its is powerful zone based firewall which monitor network traffic and apply a set of defined rules to control incoming/outgoing traffic.

        Firewalld is written in Python and is part of systemd. It supports both IPv4 and IPv6 networks.

        The main benefit are changes can be done without service restarts and with D-Bus interface configurations can be managed easily.

      • How to use awk to select data from commands and scripts – TechRepublic

        While I’m not a fan of programming, I do love working from the command line as much as possible and have great respect for programmers and what they can do. As I work on evolving my Linux skills, I find a lot of cross-pollination between Linux and macOS in the Terminal due to their shared UNIX-base, and I recently got into using some more advanced (for me) Linux commands on my scripts.

      • How to migrate VMware VMs to AWS with ease

        You can complete a VMware to AWS migration with Amazon’s CLI tool and a few commands, but a migration with large data sets requires preparation and testing.

      • LFCS – Login Scripts | Linux.org

        When a user logs into a system there are scripts that are executed. These scripts can be manipulated to allow specific programs to be run, services to be started or stopped, environment variables to be set or modified, etc.

        There is no limit to what can be done with login scripts. The same can be done with logout scripts as well.

        The login scripts are not specific to when a user logs into the system at the initial login screen. When a user changes privileges the scripts can also be executed.

      • How to install the Plex Media Player on Linux

        Plex Media Player is a native Linux GTK application that makes it surprisingly easy to enjoy your Plex content from the Linux desktop and is excellent for those who use Plex on Linux and don’t want to use it in the web browser. In this guide, we’ll show you how to set it up on Linux.

      • How To Install Backdrop CMS on CentOS 8 – idroot

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Backdrop CMS on CentOS 8. For those of you who didn’t know, Backdrop CMS is a simple, lightweight, and easy-to-use Content Management System used to build attractive, professional websites. It is very simple to use, that even users with minimal technical knowledge can easily create web content using this CMS tool.

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

      • How to see users currently logged in to Linux

        Linux is a multi-user operating system that allows multiple users to access the system at the same time.

        As a Linux system administrator, you have to check who are logged into the system before starting to work on any issues, especially when you have a team members spread across multiple locations. Because, if multiple users are making the changes in the same configuration file, it may create additional problems.

        So, make sure nobody is currently working on the issue before you take it up. To avoid these things, we need to check who all are logged into the system and what are they doing.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • digiKam 7.3 Brings Multi-Threaded Image Duplication Search, File Format Improvements

          DigiKam as the popular open-source image organizer is out with its version 7.3 feature release.

          The digiKam 7.3 release came together over the past quarter and brings a number of enhancements including:

          - Official support for ExifTool for dealing with image metadata information.

          - Faster support for finding duplicate images by making it multi-threaded where as previously it was single threaded.

        • Week 5 GDB Printers Testing KDE GSOC

          Currently we have a handful of core printers working correctly, the intention is to make sure they stay working after adding new printers.

          This is where testing comes in. before now testing had to be done manually by comparing the result from the gdb console to the expected output. This becomes inconvenient real quick if this is repeated for every class and its output. With manual testing you cannot test if the display_hint strings works correctly and if the index of a list, map or set shown correctly.

          I reached out to my mentors Ralf Habacker and Thomas Baumgart, which we decided to use gdb batch argument pipe it to a file and compare. But the problem of testing when the variable is initialized, empty or assigned is still there although possible would take too much testing to get the tester working, we came up with a solution.

        • GSOC: Week 4 and 5

          So back from where we left off, I completed majority of work on the other branches. Don’t be fooled from my casual attitude towards things, the work was still important since we had to add tooltips to various controls and keyboard navigation. Now the tooltips part was relatively simpler, both in coding as well as in reviewing, but for simplicity I merged both the issues into one. [...] I had to finish the API with more role names and incorporating it all into the QML side of things. That required an extensive internal debate as to using a dialog to display the feed overviews.

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • Ole Aamot: Record Live Multiple-Location Audio immediately in GNOME Gingerblue 0.6.0

          GNOME Gingerblue 0.6.0 is available and builds/runs on GNOME 40 systems such as Fedora Core 34.

          It supports immediate, live audio recording in compressed Xiph.org Ogg Vorbis encoded audio files stored in the private $HOME/Music/ directory from the microphone/input line on a computer or remote audio cards through USB connection through PipeWire (www.pipewire.org) with GStreamer (gstreamer.freedesktop.org) on Fedora Core 34 (getfedora.org).

          See the GNOME Gingerblue project (www.gingerblue.org) for screenshots, Fedora Core 34 x86_64 RPM package and GNU autoconf installation package (https://download.gnome.org/sources/gingerblue/0.6/gingerblue-0.6.0.tar.xz) for GNOME 40 systems and https://gitlab.gnome.org/ole/gingerblue.git for the GPLv3 source code in my GNOME Git repository.

        • Philip Withnall: Add metadata to your app to say what inputs and display sizes it supports

          The appstream specification, used for appdata files for apps on Linux, supports specifying what input devices and display sizes an app requires or supports. GNOME Software 41 will hopefully be able to use that information to show whether an app supports your computer. Currently, though, almost no apps include this metadata in their appdata.xml file.

          Please consider taking 5 minutes to add the information to the appdata.xml files you care about. Thanks!

    • Distributions

      • The 6 Best Linux Distros for Gaming

        Linux has not had the best reputation for gaming, but that doesn’t mean you can’t game on it. In fact, there are several gaming-focused Linux distros that offer out-of-the-box support for gaming libraries and drivers for gaming-focused hardware, like graphic cards.

        Here are the six best Linux distros for gaming, including the features that make each distro the best and its shortcomings.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • IBM’s CodeFlare Helps Simplify AI Workflows Onto The Hybrid Cloud

          IBM has announced CodeFlare, an open-source framework for simplifying the integration and efficient scaling of big data and AI workflows onto the hybrid cloud. CodeFlare is built on top of Ray, an emerging open-source distributed computing framework for machine learning applications.

          CodeFlare extends the capabilities of Ray by adding specific elements to make scaling workflows easier.

          To create a machine learning model, researchers and developers have to train and optimize the model first. This might involve data cleaning, feature extraction, and model optimization. CodeFlare simplifies this process using a Python-based interface for what’s called a pipeline—by making it simpler to integrate, parallelize and share data.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Web Browsers

        • Mozilla

          • Firefox 90 Available to Download, This is What’s New

            Mozilla Firefox 90 is now available to download for Windows, macOS, and Linux.

            Since last month’s Firefox 89 release was a substantial one you won’t be surprised to know Firefox 90 is a more modest affair. The biggest feature addition is background updating for Windows users (it allows the browser to be updated even when it’s not running).

            The new, if not-universally-loved ‘Proton’ redesign remains almost identical to the last version. Mozilla’s dev task force don’t appear to have made any significant changes based on its initial reception. Firefox 90 does not (in the version I tested) remove or retire any of the flags users can change to disable Proton entirely (or tame its excesses).

          • Break free from the doomscroll with Pocket

            Last year a new phrase crept into the zeitgeist: doomscrolling, the tendency to get stuck in a bad news content cycle even when consuming it makes us feel worse. That’s no surprise given that 2020 was one for the books with an unrelenting flow of calamitous topics, from the pandemic to murder hornets to wild fires. Even before we had a name for it and real life became a Nostradamus prediction, it was all too easy to fall into the doomscroll trap. Many content recommendation algorithms are designed to keep our eyeballs glued to a screen, potentially leading us into more questionable, extreme or ominous territory.


            Every day, Pocket users save millions of articles, videos, links and more from across the web, forming the foundation of Pocket’s recommendations. From this activity, Pocket’s algorithms surface the most-saved and most-read content from the Pocket community. Pocket’s human curators then sift through this material and elevate great reads for the recommendation mix: in-depth features, clever explainers, curiosity chasers, timely reads and evergreen pieces. The curator team makes sure that a wide assortment of publishers are represented, as well as a large variety of topics, including what’s happening in the world right now. And it’s done in a way that respects and preserves the privacy of Pocket readers.

      • FSF

        • Matthew Garrett: Does free software benefit from ML models being derived works of training data? [Ed: Matthew Garrett just being a Microsoft apologist once again, even in the face of Microsoft GPL violations (or similar abuse). Garrett works on proprietary software for proprietary software companies; but he pretends to speak for “FOSS”. He promotes monopolies.]

          Github recently announced Copilot, a machine learning system that makes suggestions for you when you’re writing code. It’s apparently trained on all public code hosted on Github, which means there’s a lot of free software in its training set. Github assert that the output of Copilot belongs to the user, although they admit that it may occasionally produce output that is identical to content from the training set.

        • Push freedom even further at double the speed this week [Ed: This mentions GPL abuse by Github]

          We made it! With your support, we quickly reached our summer fundraising goal. In fact, we surpassed it before our deadline. As of today, we’ve raised USD 51,798.

          From now until just after the original deadline, July 19th, we are stretching our goal to add another USD 11,000 to the total, and this time, it will be matched! Thanks to a generous offer from Cristian Frâncu, Andreea Frâncu, and Andrei Pitis, we can push freedom forward even further this summer when you support us in this last week.

        • GNU Projects

          • GNU Health: Back to the Future

            Leonardo da Vinci said “simplicity is the ultimate sophistication“, but it seems like the “modern” computing world never heard that quote, or ignore it. Today, a single application takes hundreds of megabytes, both of disk and RAM space. Slow, buggy, inefficient systems at every level.

            Probably the best example on this cluttering mess comes from the mobile computing. Most phones are bloated with useless software that not only hinders the navigation experience, but pose a threat to your privacy. Yes, all this software is proprietary. Worst of it, you can not even uninstall it.

            Fortunately, there is hope. Let me introduce SXMO, the Simple X on Mobile project. As the authors describe it, SXMO is a minimalist environment for Linux smartphones, such as the PinePhone. SXMO embraces simplicity, and simplicity is both elegant and efficient.

      • Programming/Development

        • Daniel Silverstone: Subplot – First public alpha release

          This weekend we (Lars and I) finished our first public alpha release of Subplot. Subplot is a tool for helping you to document your acceptance criteria for a project in such a way that you can also produce a programmatic test suite for the verification criteria. We centre this around the concept of writing a Markdown document about your project, with the option to write Gherkin-like given/when/then scenarios inside which detail the automated verification of the acceptance criteria.

          This may sound very similar to Yarn, a similar concept which Lars, Richard, and I came up with in 2013. Critically back then we were very ‘software engineer’ focussed and so Yarn was a testing tool which happened to also produce reasonable documentation outputs if you squinted sideways and tried not to think too critically about them. Subplot on the other hand considers the documentation output to be just as important, if not more important, than the test suite output. Yarn was a tool which ran tests embedded in Markdown files, where Subplot is a documentation tool capable of extracting tests from an acceptance document for use in testing your project.

        • Perl/Raku

        • Python

        • Rust

          • Niko Matsakis: CTCFT 2021-07-19 Agenda

            The Rust project has a number of mechanisms for getting people involved in the project, but most are oriented around 1:1 engagement. Doc has been investigating some of the ways that other projects engage contributors, such as Python’s mentored sprints. She will discuss how some of those projects run things and share some ideas about how that might be applied in the Rust project.

    • Standards/Consortia

      • OpenCL 3.0.8 Released With New Extension To Help AI Inferencing

        The new version is OpenCL 3.0.8 and a prominent extension added this time is cl_khr_integer_dot_product. The new cl_khr_integer_dot_product extension adds support for SPIR-V instructions and OpenCL C built-in functions to compute the dote product of vectors of integers. The cl_khr_integer_dot_product extension was worked on by Intel, Arm, Qualcomm, and Imagination. This dot product extension can be useful and designed in mind for inferencing using quantized neural networks.

  • Leftovers

    • Hardware

      • As Europe hopes to double its share of global chip production, Intel comes along with $20bn, plans for fabs

        Industries including automotive, consumer tech, and health have been hit hard by the semiconductor drought, and fabrication plants are struggling to fulfill a backlog of orders.

        The European Commission, for one, hopes to boost production of “cutting-edge and sustainable semiconductors” in Europe to 20 per cent of global output by 2030, up from about 10 per cent right now, according to its Digital Compass initiative. That, at least, might ensure Europe gets a decent supply for parts for the future.

      • TSMC and Foxconn sign on dotted line to buy 10 million Pfizer vaccines for Taiwan

        Foxconn and TSMC have inked a procurement deal with Pfizer distributor Shanghai Fosun Pharmaceutical Group for 10 million vaccines on behalf of Taiwan, a plan approved by the Taiwanese government late last month.

        Taiwan’s Overseas Community Affairs Council said statements were released by the two Apple suppliers on Sunday confirming the agreement following details being made public on a social media story that appeared to come from Chinese state-owned Xinhua News Agency.

    • Health/Nutrition

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Ransomware Attacks Hit Closer To Home

          Fifteen hundred organizations around the world had their data locked up in the latest ransomware, including grocery store chains and schools. It’s unclear if any IBM i shops were included in the attack, which a Russian hacking group claimed credit for. But it’s clear that ransomware is a growing threat to all organizations, including IBM i shops.

        • Don’t get tricked by this crashtastic iPhone Wi-Fi hack!

          About a month ago, a security researcher revealed what turned out to be zero-day bug in Apple’s Wi-Fi software, apparently without meaning to…

        • Microsoft broke British and European competition laws, UK reseller tells High Court

          Microsoft’s attempts to kill off resellable perpetual software licences infringe the EU constitution and UK competition law alike, according to the legal filings of a reseller suing Redmond for £270m in London’s High Court.

          Details of ValueLicensing’s lawsuit against Microsoft are now in the public domain after the US-based software megalith filed an acknowledgement of service earlier this month.

        • Pseudo-Open Source

        • Security

          • Complete Guide to Installing Security Updates in Debian & Ubuntu

            Whether you are a DevSecOps engineer responsible for managing your organization’s application infrastructure or you have your own personal Linux server that you use at home, the importance of keeping your systems safe and secure against malicious attacks by bad actors cannot be over emphasized.

            While there are many aspects with regards to securing systems, one fundamental best practice is to continuously patch your systems and applications as soon as they are made available. The infamous WannaCry ransomware attack from the summer of 2017, that caused much grief to millions of users is a case in point. While the patch was made available much ahead of the actual attack, it was due to a sheer lack of security discipline that the attack was successful.

          • SolarWinds issues software update – one it wrote for a change – to patch hole exploited in the wild

            SolarWinds has issued an emergency patch after a critical security hole in its Serv-U Managed File Transfer and Serv-U Secure FTP was spotted being exploited in the wild.

            The vulnerability, discovered by Microsoft’s Threat Intelligence Center (MSTIC) and Offensive Security Research teams, can be exploited by an attacker to achieve remote code execution, and is present in Serv-U version 15.2.3 HF1 and all prior builds. The Redmond crew also said a “single threat actor” was abusing the programming blunder (CVE-2021-35211) though it’s not known how many customers are affected.

            “This attack is a Return Oriented Programming (ROP) attack,” said SolarWinds in an advisory. “When exploited, the vulnerability causes the Serv-U product to throw an exception and then intercepts the exception handling code to run commands. Please note, several reasons exist for exceptions to be thrown, so an exception itself is not necessarily an indicator of attack.”

          • With a straight face, Putin agrees to do something about ransomware coming out of Russia, apparently [Ed: Distraction and deflection from Microsoft back doors and insecurity by design]

            ate last week, President Biden said he brought up the epidemic of ransomware hitting American businesses in a phone call with his Russian counterpart, and hinted America may start hitting back.

            Biden said he and Vladimir Putin not only discussed the matter, their two countries are apparently going to try to coordinate some action to tackle the waves of extortionware infections, which seem to be mainly orchestrated by miscreants in Russia and typically avoid compromising computers configured to use the Russian language.

            IT management software made by Kaseya was lately exploited to install REvil ransomware on as many as 1,500 businesses. The crew behind that software nasty is said to avoid targeting Russian organizations.

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • Amazon will know when its business, privacy practices keep you up at night – it has an FCC-approved sleep radar

              The FCC has granted Amazon permission to use 60GHz radar in some future device to monitor people’s sleeping habits and sense gesture commands.

              Amazon requested a waiver [PDF] from the US communications regulator to build a gadget that emits radar waves and “operates at higher powers than currently allowed” in June. Ronald Rapasi, acting chief of the FCC’s office of engineering and technology, officially approved the request this month.

              The mysterious gizmo, referred to as a “radar sensor” in the FCC’s response [PDF], would emit radar waves at frequencies between 57 and 64GHz. It was described as a “non-mobile device” that has to be constantly plugged into a power source to work. Amazon said the sensors would be used to help less physically able users interact with the device through gesture commands, and could promote for “sleep hygiene.”

            • Twitter U-turns after conferring society’s highest honor – a blue check mark – on very obvious bot accounts

              Twitter verified a bunch of bot accounts, granting them coveted blue check marks, and then reversed the decision, admitting it made a mistake.

              The debacle swung the spotlight on the social network’s system for verifying accounts, which is normally reserved for qualifying celebs, politicians, sports stars, experts, journos, and similar netizens.

              A tweeter going by the handle Conspirador Norteño, who claims to fight online disinformation, found that none of the six accounts in question, created in June, had actually posted any tweets and that, for each of them, their thousand or so followers were largely the same accounts. Yet, the sextet had been verified as supposedly authentic and notable people by Twitter when they were anything but.

    • Finance

      • The Fed’s digital dollar could bring millions into the digital economy [Ed: War on cash which is a war on privacy among many other things]

        Cash transactions are increasingly rare. More than half of transactions in the US involved cash in 2010. The number had dropped to 28% in 2020, even before the Covid-19 pandemic, which led to wider adoption of cashless and contactless payment among businesses.

        But going cashless means a heavier reliance on private companies—banks, credit card companies, payment processors—all of which have delays and fees that hit poor people hardest. At the moment, a cash-free economy would exclude the 7.1 million Americans, or 5.4% of US households, that are unbanked, meaning they do not have a checking or savings account at a bank or credit union, according to the FDIC’s most recent study in 2019.

    • Monopolies

      • Patents

        • ‘Dealing requirement’ a necessary element of the tort of causing loss by unlawful means
        • Biden Administration executive order makes Europe even more important for SEP owners [Ed: The term “owners” is wrong and SEP is a euphemism]

          A Biden Administration executive order widely seen as an attack on the power of Big Tech hands Silicon Valley’s titans all they could have hoped for when it comes to SEPs and FRAND

        • German Federal Constitutional Court paves the way for the UPC

          As an international treaty the Agreement on a Unified Patent Court (UPCA) provides for the establishment of the Unified Patent Court (UPC). As a joint Court of the Contracting Member States, the UPC shall have its own legal personality. The UPC is supposed to obtain exclusive competence for an extensive catalog of dispute matters regarding European and Unitary Patents in each Contracting Member State.

          An earlier Act to ratify the UPCA (UPCA-Approval Act I) had been declared invalid by the decision of the Federal Constitutional Court of 13 February 2020 (2 BvR 739/17). The Court held, that there was a lack of a 2/3 majority of the German Parliament (Bundestag), which had been necessary according to the German Constitution to transfer the judicial power to a newly established European Court.

        • German court paves the way for UPC ratification

          On Friday 9 July 2021, the German Federal Constitutional Court dismissed two interim injunction applications, which have been delaying progress of Germany’s participation in the Unified Patent Court. The German Parliament (Bundestag) had adopted the Act of Approval enabling ratification of the Unified Patent Court (UPC) Agreement and its Protocol on Provisional Application on 18 December 2020, but the two constitutional complaints were filed on 20 December 2020 preventing the final ratifications steps being taken.

        • Finally – German Constitutional Court Clears the Way for The Unified Patent Court

          Today the German Federal Constitutional Court rejected two applications for an interim injunction against the German implementation of the Unified Patent Court Agreement (UPCA). The outcome of the decisions is a clear yes to a European patent court system!

        • Software Patents

          • $2,500 for prior art on IP Edge subsidiary, Dedicated Licensing

            On June 29, 2021, Unified Patents added a new PATROLL contest, with a $2,500 cash prize, seeking prior art on at least claim 1 of U.S. Patent 9,397,627. The patent is owned by Dedicated Licensing, LLC, an NPE and IP Edge subsidiary. The ’627 patent generally relates to a network-enabled audio device that provides a display device that allows the user to select playlists of music much like a jukebox. It is currently being asserted against Rhapsody, Vimeo, iHeartMedia, SoundCloud, Sound Hound, and Genius Media Group.

EPO Would Never Have Posted This

Posted in Europe, Patents at 3:00 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz


Summary: This is Austria’s patent office on software patents

If Capitalism Stands for Free Market Competition, Then Proprietary Software is Like Communism

Posted in Microsoft, Novell, Ubuntu at 2:17 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

The ‘Microsoft bloc’

Gate on Capital Hill (Budapest, Hungary)
Budapest, Hungary

Summary: Canonical stopped competing with Microsoft; in fact, today’s Canonical actively helps Microsoft, in effect breaking its promise to the Ubuntu community

THE company known as Canonical works for Microsoft; a direct contradiction when one considers the #1 bug in Ubuntu (replacing Windows and Microsoft). How did this happen? How was Microsoft allowed (from the perspective of competition authorities) or ever permitted to take over a competitor? Days ago we published a couple of things about the latest disgusting gesture [1, 2], earlier today we saw more of the same (Canonical pushing WSL, i.e. Windows, at the expense of GNU/Linux), and this certainly won’t be the last of that.

We’re meant to believe that this whole ‘free market’ thing works (or will work out at the end), but since the Novell-Microsoft deal (2006) we’ve been seeing a systematic abduction of Microsoft’s rivals, ranging from Yahoo! (Web) to Nokia (mobile) and even Canonical. Red Hat/IBM is a separate case. Another article…

I don’t want to get into all those labels and political smears/analogies, but to me it seems like Microsoft doesn’t accept the basic concept of competition. It is just trying to take over the competition, in effect cheating in an effort to ‘win’ a match. After bribing the Linux Foundation Microsoft managed to put its staff in charge of Linux (Microsoft’s Levin announced all the stable releases a couple of weeks ago) and it took over millions of Free software projects by just buying their platform. Why wasn’t this prevented by authorities?

“Canonical has become supine and useless. Ubuntu’s days may be numbered, but at least we have projects like Gentoo, Arch, Devuan and so on as ‘lifeboats’ of sorts.”This is not competition; it reminds me of what the Soviet Union did in eastern Europe and we could come up with all sorts of vivid memes, even tough memes like the one below. Nobody ever survives a partnership with Microsoft in the long run. And Microsoft laughs at its very own ‘partners’, show internal documents.

Canonical has become supine and useless. Ubuntu’s days may be numbered, but at least we have projects like Gentoo, Arch, Devuan and so on as ‘lifeboats’ of sorts.

Nicolae Ceaușescu: Microsoft is a great partner
Nicolae Ceaușescu nearly outlived his usefulness to the Soviets

Links 12/7/2021: digiKam 7.3, EuroLinux, and GNU/Linux on IdeaPad

Posted in News Roundup at 12:57 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • My IdeaPad Y50-70 now runs Linux, too – Nvidia, 4K, details

      This would be the end of part one of my IdeaPad Y50-70 Linux saga. Overall, the experiment went well. But there were problems. Cardinally, HD/UHD scaling in Plasma before 5.20 is still rather meh, and I needed a lot of manual work to get things sorted. The desktop also had some rather rough edges, for no good reason.

      On the bright side, the hardware compatibility is top-notch, performance and responsiveness are more than reasonable for a seven-year old laptop with a 5,400rpm mechanical disk, and Kubuntu sure looks the part, plus you get a decent spread of good applications. But now we must up the game [sic]. I intend to test the gaming side of things as well, which will surely be rather interesting. Anyway, that would be all for now. Hopefully, this was an entertaining little exercise. GRUB and SDDM 4K scaling tutorials coming soon.

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • Microsoft has its own Linux distro called CBL-Mariner [Ed: E.E.E. in action, this is not about going upstream]

        It’s no secret that Microsoft has been showing Linux a lot more love in recent years — just look to Windows Subsystem for Linux as an example. Nonetheless, it might surprise you to learn that Microsoft has its very own Linux distribution.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

    • Kernel Space

      • Linux 5.14 Can Create Secret Memory Areas With memfd_secret

        The “memfd_secret” system call is being added to the Linux 5.14 kernel to provide the ability to create memory areas that are visible only in the context of the owning process and these “secret” memory regions are not mapped by other processes or the kernel page tables.

        This work originated with the proposed secretmemfd work for secret memory on Linux and over the past year as memfd_secret has been gping through many rounds of review. The intended use-case for these secret memory areas are cases like OpenSSL private keys potentially being stored within these areas to reduce the possibility they are exposed in system memory and not able to be backed up by other hardware encryption methods with modern hardware.

      • New Linux kernel 5.14 release candidate is out: Here’s what’s inside

        This release of kernel has contributions from about 1,650 developers. There were 11,859 file changes, nearly 82,000 insertions and 285,485 deletions.

        Torvalds expects this to be a “pretty regular release” compared to the larger 4.13 stable release in late June, which brought early support for Apple’s M1 Arm-based processor.

        “Last release was big, but it was all fairly calm despite that, so size isn’t always the determining factor here,” he warned in the Linux Kernel Mailing List.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • How to install Openldap on RockyLinux or Centos 8 Step by step – Unixcop

        The project is to copy the LDAP reference source code. OpenLDAP is the abbreviation of Lightweight Directory Access Protocol.LDAP is a vendor-neutral application protocol that lets you assess and maintain distributed directory information services over an ISP.There are many different ways to provide a directory.For example, using LDAP helps you to provide a central place to store usernames and passwords.

        So, many various applications and services could connect to the LDAP server to validate users. LDAP servers are widely used in Organizations to store the User name and password in a Centralized Server against which the User can authenticate further to programs and services present on the network. Furthermore, we will be using Symas OpenLDAP packages for the standard software maintenance commands native to your operating system.Symas OpenLDAP is the principal contributor in writing 90% of OpenLDAP code.

      • How to disable SELinux on CentOS/RHEL 8 – TecAdmin

        SELinux (Security-Enhanced Linux) is a Linux kernel security module that provides enhanced security for Linux systems. SELinux provides a mechanism for supporting access control security policies. This specifies how the processes communicate with each other and interact with the files.

        It’s not a good practice to disable SELinux on a system, especially on production servers. For developer systems, you can disable it only if facing issues due to its policies.

        In this how-to-guide, you will learn to disable SELinux on a CentOS 8 or RHEL 8 Linux system.

      • How to Remap Keyboard / Gamepad in Ubuntu Easily with This Tool | UbuntuHandbook

        Want to remap your keyboard or gamepad keys in Ubuntu Linux? It’s easy to do this via Key Mapper.

        Key Mapper is a free and open-source tool written in Python 3. With it, you can change the mapping for input devices, including mouse, keyboard, and gamepad.

        It works on both X11 and Wayland, and supports for mapping to combined buttons (e.g., Control+A) and programmable macros.

      • Real Time Linux Server monitoring with GLANCES

        Glances is an open source real time Linux server monitoring system that aims at providing as much as information possible in as minimum as space possible. Glances is like top command but more refined with many more features & much more real time information of your Linux system.

        Glances provide information regarding memory, CPU, Disk IO , file system, Uptime, processes, interfaces, alerts & many other system information.

        One of the best features of Glances is that it can work in server/client mode. We can perform remote monitoring of the systems using a Web interface or through terminal/CLI & we can also export stats to a file.

      • Introduction To Ansible Automation Platform – OSTechNix

        Are you a beginner to Ansible? This guide will give a brief introduction to Ansible, and other important factors of Ansible automation platform including Ansible architecture, inventory, modules and playbooks.

        If you are someone who is trying to understand what ansible is and what are its core features, then this article is for you.

      • How to Install and Use Kontact in Ubuntu – Unixcop

        Kontakt is a free, open-source Linux-based Email application that is developed by the KDE project, which can be used on GNOME desktop as well to replace e.g. Thunderbird. It works as a Personal Information Manager (PIM). Kontact has modules to provide email, calendar, contacts, and notes functions. Users can easily handle their emails and other relevant tasks in a way better method by using Kontact. In this article, we will show you how to install Kontact on Ubuntu 21.04 desktop by either using Flatpak or the Ubuntu repository.

      • How to Install MediaWiki with Nginx and Let’s Encrypt SSL on Ubuntu 20.04

        MediaWiki is an open-source wiki software written in PHP. It allows you to create your own self-hosted wiki website on the server. It is one of the most popular wiki platforms due to its simplicity and customizability. Currently, it is used by many companies to manage their wiki pages. It provides a versatile and free tool for publishing content on the internet.

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install MediaWiki with Nginx web server and Let’s Encrypt SSL on Ubuntu 20.04.

      • How To Install Thinkorswim on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS – idroot

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Thinkorswim on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS. For those of you who didn’t know, Thinkorswim is an online trading platform developed by TD Ameritrade to allow users to trade in various stock, options, futures, and equities.

        This article assumes you have at least basic knowledge of Linux, know how to use the shell, and most importantly, you host your site on your own VPS. The installation is quite simple and assumes you are running in the root account, if not you may need to add ‘sudo‘ to the commands to get root privileges. I will show you through the step-by-step installation of the Thinkorswim on Ubuntu 20.04 (Focal Fossa). You can follow the same instructions for Ubuntu 18.04, 16.04, and any other Debian-based distribution like Linux Mint.

      • Deploy a Kubernetes Cluster using Ansible – buildVirtual

        In this article we will take a look at how to deploy a Kubernetes cluster on Ubuntu 18.04 using Ansible Playbooks. I have found Ansible to be a fantastic tool for getting a Kubernetes cluster up and running quickly in my development environment, and now use the Ansible playbooks detailed in this article when I need to stand up a Kubernetes cluster quickly and easily.

        For the purposes of this article, we will use Ansible to deploy a small Kubernetes cluster – with one master node, used to manage the cluster, and two worker nodes, which will be used to run our container applications. To achieve this, we will use four Ansible playbooks.

      • SUSE Manager and Ansible: Making Automation Easier and More Powerful

        SUSE Manager is a single, powerful tool that makes it possible for your IT operations team to manage the complete lifecycle of RPM- and DEB-based Linux systems. With a feature-rich, web-based interface, you can use SUSE Manager to administer, deploy, configure, and audit all of your Linux systems, no matter if they are running on bare metal or within a virtual environ-ment.

        SUSE Manager includes several deployment, orchestration, and automation tools that not only make the job of the administrator easier but also give them even more power to work faster. With SUSE Manager in place, you can minimize staffing costs and maximize efficiency.

      • What is XML?

        Reading the sample XML, you might find there’s an intuitive quality to the format. You can probably understand the data in this document whether you’re familiar with the subject matter or not. This is partly because XML is considered verbose. It uses lots of tags, the tags can have long and descriptive names, and the data is ordered in a hierarchical manner that helps explain the data’s relationships. You probably understand from this sample that the Fedora distribution and the Slackware distribution are two different and unrelated instances of Linux because each one is “contained” inside its own independent tag.

      • How to Work with Case Statement in Bash Scripts

        In this article, we will take a look at bash case statements and how to use them in bash scripts. The case statement is a bash built and is used to simplify conditional logic in bash scripts.

      • How To Create SFTP User for a Web Server Document Root

        SFTP (SSH/Secure File Transfer Protocol) is a network transmission standard used to transfer, access, and manage files over a remote network. It contains SSH (Secure Shell), making it a lot more secure than the FTP protocol.

        Files are transferred through a single control channel in SFTP. It requires authentication and runs on port 22. In SFTP, the SSH shell provides encryption that helps protect usernames, passwords, and other personal data transferred through SFTP.

        In this how-to guide, we will learn to create SFTP users for web server document root.

      • Use Docker Compose with Podman to Orchestrate Containers on Fedora – Fedora Magazine

        Docker Compose is an open-source tool used by developers for orchestrating containers locally or in production.

      • 6 steps to automating code pushes with Ansible Automation Platform | Enable Sysadmin

        Ansible Automation Platform (AAP) is an enterprise solution by Red Hat to make Ansible easier to use. It comes bundled with a lot of components to help you automate your processes across the entire Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC). It provides you with various features such as Role-Based Access Control (RBAC), workflows, third-party integration via an API, notifications, shared SSH key credentials, and more. It also integrates well with LDAP and comes with pre-configured logging.

    • Wine or Emulation

      • Box64 Emulator Released for Arm64 Linux

        Box86, the popular x86 emulator, has just received a huge upgrade. This comes in the form of Box64, the ARM64 equivalent.

        If you did not know, Box64_86 lets you run 64-bit or 32-bit Linux programs on ARM systems. In other words, it makes it possible for you to access desktop Linux programs on your Raspberry Pi or Raspberry Pi alternatives.

        Fortunately, now we have Box86 and Box64 to the rescue no matter what type of ARM system you’ve got.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • digiKam 7.3 Open-Source Photo Management App Released with ExifTool Support, More

          Coming about three months after digiKam 7.2, the digiKam 7.3 release is here to introduces official support for the famous ExifTool utility for handling file metadata instead of Exiv2. digiKam now features an ExifTool metadata viewer in the metadata sidebar, which can be accessed from everywhere within the app.

          Another new feature in this release is the addition of a new tool that can be used to export your photos to the iNaturalist social network service for biologists, citizen scientists, and naturalists.

        • digiKam – digiKam 7.3.0 is released

          Dear digiKam fans and users, After four months of maintenance, the digiKam team is proud to present version 7.3.0 of its open source digital photo manager. Here is the list of most important features coming with this release: ExifTool Support The famous ExifTool is now supported officially in parallel than the former Exiv2 shared library to handle file metadata. ExifTool is a powerful tool that we will use in special cases to fix metadata dysfunctions that we cannot solve using Exiv2.

        • Patching XFSTESTS file system regression testing suite for FUSE support

          Hello everyone! I’ve been working as a student software developer for Google Summer of Code at KDE (KIO-FUSE) since past couple months and thought it’d be nice to share the progress made. This particular blog is supposed to give readers a rough overview of what FUSE, KIO-FUSE, XFSTESTS are, why we’re trying to integrate them, how far we’ve managed to come, and more important, to announce that it is finally possible to test FUSE file systems using XFSTESTS without ugly hacks!

        • Repairing Akonadi on FreeBSD

          Akonadi (the server) crashes on startup in a MySQL function; if you restart it a couple of times quickly-enough, it stops auto-restarting and the sad-faced DrKonqi goes away from the task bar.

          I wrote about the problem previously with the somewhat derpy suggestion “use an older libmysql”. That’s a workaround, but any accidental upgrade (like I did saturday morning) will pull in the latest MySQL 5.7.34 libraries and start the problem all over again. (It actually took me until saturday afternoon or so to realise that I had this problem and that I had already described it – derp on me).

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • Canonical and Microsoft: Securing, strengthening, and simplifying your Linux Stack [Ed: Canonical was ‘sold’ to Microsoft for nothing]
        • Desktop Team Updates – Monday 12th July 2021 [Ed: This page will make desktop users vomit. It’s like Ubuntu development became just Microsoft Windows while IBM kills off whatever Red Hat was doing.]

          Hi everyone, below you will find the updates from the Desktop team from the last week. If you’re interested in discussing a topic please start a thread in the Desktop area of Discourse.

        • Ubuntu Developer Still Pursuing Triple Buffering, Deep Color For GNOME

          Triple buffering and deep color support are two of the features still being worked on for GNOME by Ubuntu maker Canonical.

          Daniel Van Vugt of Canonical has been known for his upstream GNOME work since they switched back to using GNOME as their default desktop. One of the long ongoing efforts by Van Vugt for GNOME has been around deep color support so the desktop and applications will work better with today’s deep color displays. Another effort by Van Vugt has been dynamic triple buffering support primarily for when the GPU is running behind in rendering elements for the desktop.

        • Arijit Kundu: Summer of 2021 with GNOME

          GNOME Foundation is a vibrant worldwide community of amazing people involved in making GNOME, one of the most loved desktop environment. The community is not limited to the people delivering pieces of code. But also includes people helping with designs, translations, documentation, management, and much more.

          GNOME is built by people, and we value your each & every contribution to help create such world-class free software.

          Back in 2020, the Engagement team — the frontiers of GNOME came with the new initiative Faces of GNOME to celebrate all kinds of contributions with a motive of creating a much stronger community driven by passion.

    • Distributions

      • Best Linux Distros for 2021

        Each Linux distribution has its own uniqueness and features. It becomes best when it continuously improves in quality, features, user experience and security.

        This tutorial is about the best Linux distributions for beginners and experienced users.

        Please also note that our description is not presented in any particular order. There is a likelihood that your preferred Linux distribution may not be captured in the description list since our description is based on the various user tastes fetched from various forums, and distribution ratings on the internet. Feel free to give us your views on the same.

      • 5 Things Pop!_OS Linux Does Better Than Windows 11

        Last month it was raining Windows 11 content all over the internet. Judging by the pre-release and post-release reactions on social media, the release was a rollercoaster for fans. While Windows 11 brings many things to the table and improves on many aspects, many people were disappointed with their PC not supporting it because their hardware is old. But, open-source always has an answer. The main goal of open-source software is to solve problems and not to create more of them.

        Pop!_OS is one of the prime examples of how good the open-source software community is. The new Pop!_OS 21.04, which was released recently, brings tons of new productivity-focused features and is one of the most popular Ubuntu-based distros in the community. Here are some things that it does better than Windows 11 and why it can be a perfect replacement for Windows 11 on your PC.

      • New Releases

        • Solus 4.3 Delivers New Desktop Environment Updates

          Solus have just released a new update to their Fortitude series of distributions bringing us up to version 4.3. Let’s take a quick look at what’s new.

          Targeted at desktop users, Solus is a fully-fledged, independent rolling release Linux distribution with its own desktop environment and repositories. It is a unique distribution in that it is written from scratch, meaning it is not derived from Debian, Ubuntu, Arch Linux or one of the other major distributions. Solus has it’s own package manager named EOPKG which makes it very easy to install software on Solus desktop.

          The Solus desktop environment is called Budgie. It is a great desktop that aims to provide sane defaults and a beautiful interface. Any GNOME user looking for something lighter would enjoy Budgie. The experience of using it is quite a bit like using GNOME with the Dash to Panel extension.

        • Solus 4.3 Released

          We are proud to announce the immediate availability of Solus 4.3, a new Solus 4 “Fortitude” series release. This release delivers new desktop environment updates, software stacks, and hardware enablement.

        • Solus 4.3 released

          Version 4.3 of the Solus “home computing” distribution has been released. “This release delivers new desktop environment updates, software stacks, and hardware enablement.”

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • Avoiding the “Frankencloud” as you accelerate transformation [Ed: Or just avoid hype and buzzwords like clown computing altogether]

          We’re all now well aware that COVID-19 disrupted operations across industries and forced many companies to put a long list of projects on hold. But today it’s clear that digital transformation initiatives were often not on that list.

          In fact, a new Harvard Business Review study revealed that ninety percent of survey respondents say COVID-19 has accelerated the timing of their organization’s modernization efforts. But just because digital efforts are growing in importance and executives are feeling more confident that their strategies are working, it’s not all smooth sailing. In fact, nearly 30% report the complexity of the current IT environment as the biggest technology challenge to transformation.

        • A friendly business model – i. e. how we license EuroLinux and EuroMan [Ed: From Poland comes EuroLinux 8.3, based on RHEL. Their latest speaks of licensing.]

          Over the years, we have encountered many different product licensing models: from the very intricate to the less complicated ones. Licensing has always been a nightmare for customers and partners. So is it worth keeping the business model simple, friendly and honest?

          Many years of experience in the IT industry and observation of the activities of various companies have allowed us to draw many interesting conclusions. One of the main factors hindering the cooperation of customers and partners with software producers is complicated licensing. Some manufacturers often change their licensing method or introduce different models for the same group of products. This means that we get lost in the meanders of licensing and we cannot keep up with the changes. We start wondering: how many subscriptions should we buy? Do we use the subscription as expected by the manufacturer? Are we going to be charged penalties? How many subscriptions should we price for a customer for a given environment? In addition, changes to the licensing rules are usually accompanied by an increase in the price of the solution and a marketing guide for partners ‘how to convince the customer that it is cheaper’.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Linux Mint 20.2 is a bit more insistent about updating but not as annoying as Windows or Mac, team promises

          Version 20.2 of Linux Mint has attempted to address the sticky subject of system update notifications and automation.

          Linux Mint (aside from the Debian edition) is based on Ubuntu, with Mint 20 editions based on Ubuntu 20.04, this being the most recent LTS (Long-term support) edition. The emphasis is more on stability and ease of use rather than cutting-edge features. Linux Mint 20.2 is supported until April 2025 – as are all the 20.x releases.

          Upgrading Mint 20 or 20.1 to 20.2 is rather straightforward – essentially a matter of creating a backup snapshot, updating packages, and choosing “Upgrade to Linux Mint 20.2″ from the Update Manager menu. The upgrade notes also suggest running a utility called usrmerge, which simplifies the directory structure. This has been done since Linux 20.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • 5 Popular Free and Open Source EMR Software

        Health institutes over the world are using EMR systems to carry on their critical daily tasks. There are lots of choices out there, but of course, many of them come with a heavy price to pay since they are proprietary. Nonetheless, there are many good open source EMR software that meet international standards and can be trusted with your patient data.

        If you are managing a hosptial infrastructure or a clinical unit, then you do not need to pay for premium licenses for mainstream EMR systems. Instead, you can use these open source EMR systems to get larger benefits.

      • 5 Popular Free and Open Source EMR Software

        Health institutes over the world are using EMR systems to carry on their critical daily tasks. There are lots of choices out there, but of course, many of them come with a heavy price to pay since they are proprietary. Nonetheless, there are many good open source EMR software that meet international standards and can be trusted with your patient data.

        If you are managing a hosptial infrastructure or a clinical unit, then you do not need to pay for premium licenses for mainstream EMR systems. Instead, you can use these open source EMR systems to get larger benefits.

      • Predictions for open source and cloud over the months ahead

        It’s no secret that public cloud has exponentially grown in recent years but what is particularly exciting to me is the acceleration of open source adoption too. Public cloud has freed enterprises of their ties to proprietary software, and they are adopting open source technologies in unprecedented numbers. In fact, a recent survey of enterprise developers conducted by Aiven found that 85% of enterprises reported they already used open source in their organization and over 90% of developers say that open source will be a part of their businesses in the future.

      • Collaboration and Cost Savings Drive Open Source Adoption in the UK

        In the second phase of research into open source adoption, the non-profit Open UK has found that “97 percent of businesses of different sizes in all sectors of the UK economy use open source software technology.”

      • Web Browsers

        • Mozilla

          • Mozilla Firefox 90 Is Now Available for Download, Removes Built-In FTP Support

            The biggest change in the Mozilla Firefox 90 release is the deprecation of FTP (File Transfer Protocol) support. Firefox follows on the footsteps of Google Chrome/Chromium, and other web browsers, to no longer allow access to ftp:// links.

            Mozilla started deprecating FTP support since Firefox 88, but users where able to re-enable the feature by setting the network.ftp.enabled option from false to true in about:config. But starting with the Firefox 90 release, all FTP code is now gone forever and can’t be re-enabled, which means that you’ll have to use a special app to access your FTP sites.

          • Mozilla Security Blog: Firefox 90 supports Fetch Metadata Request Headers

            We are pleased to announce that Firefox 90 will support Fetch Metadata Request Headers which allows web applications to protect themselves and their users against various cross-origin threats like (a) cross-site request forgery (CSRF), (b) cross-site leaks (XS-Leaks), and (c) speculative cross-site execution side channel (Spectre) attacks.

            Cross-site attacks on Web Applications

            The fundamental security problem underlying cross-site attacks is that the web in its open nature does not allow web application servers to easily distinguish between requests originating from its own application or originating from a malicious (cross-site) application, potentially opened in a different browser tab.

          • 10 years at Mozilla

            Yesterday (July 11, 2021) was the 10 year anniversary of starting at the Mozilla Corporation. My life has changed a ton in those years: in that time I ended a marriage, changed the city in which I live two times, and took up religion1. Mozilla has also changed pretty drastically in my time here, especially in the last year.

      • SaaS/Back End/Databases

      • CMS

      • Programming/Development

  • Leftovers

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • WinMagic MFA, Encryption Solution for Linux Endpoint Devices Proves It Can Enable U.S. Federal Agencies to Meet Biden’s Cybersecurity Deadline
        • Security

          • Microsoft’s ‘PrintNightmare’ Windows patch accidentally broke people’s connection to their printers | The Independent

            An emergency update issued to Windows 10 by Microsoft to stop a printer exploit bug made users lose access to their printers.

            Users that installed the ‘PrintNightmare’ patch, which stops hackers using a critical flaw in the Windows Print Spooler software that could result in malicious individuals running code as administrators on machines, discovered that they could not connect to their printers.

          • Security updates for Monday

            Security updates have been issued by Fedora (djvulibre), Gentoo (connman, gnuchess, openexr, and xen), openSUSE (arpwatch, avahi, dbus-1, dhcp, djvulibre, freeradius-server, fribidi, gstreamer, gstreamer-plugins-bad, gstreamer-plugins-base, gstreamer-plugins-good, gstreamer-plugins-ugly, gupnp, hivex, icinga2, jdom2, jetty-minimal, kernel, kubevirt, libgcrypt, libnettle, libxml2, openexr, openscad, pam_radius, polkit, postgresql13, python-httplib2, python-py, python-rsa, qemu, redis, rubygem-actionpack-5_1, salt, snakeyaml, squid, tpm2.0-tools, and xstream), Red Hat (xstream), and SUSE (bluez, csync2, dbus-1, jdom2, postgresql13, redis, slurm_20_11, and xstream).

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • Ending Anonymity: Why The WEF’s Partnership Against Cybercrime Threatens The Future Of Privacy – unlimitedhangout.com

              Amid a series of warnings and simulations in the past year regarding a massive cyber attack that could soon bring down the global financial system, the “information sharing group” of the largest banks and private financial organizations in the United States warned earlier this year that banks “will encounter growing danger” from “converging” nation-state and criminal hackers over the course of 2021 and in the years that follow.

              The organization, called the Financial Services Information Sharing and Analysis Center (FS-ISAC), made the claim in its 2021 “Navigating Cyber” report, which assesses the events of 2020 and provides a forecast for the current year. That forecast, which casts a devastating cyber attack on the financial system through third parties as practically inevitable, also makes the case for a “global fincyber [financial-cyber] utility” as the main solution to the catastrophic scenarios it predicts.

              Perhaps unsurprisingly, an organization close to top FS-ISAC members has recently been involved in laying the groundwork for that very “global fincyber utility” — the World Economic Forum, which recently produced the model for such a utility through its Partnership against Cybercrime (WEF-PAC) project. Not only are top individuals at FS-ISAC involved in WEF cybersecurity projects like Cyber Polygon, but FS-ISAC’s CEO was also an adviser to the WEF-Carnegie Endowment for International Peace report that warned that the global financial system was increasingly vulnerable to cyber attacks and was the subject of the first article in this 2-part series.

              Another article, published earlier this year at Unlimited Hangout, also explored the WEF’s Cyber Polygon 2020 simulation of a cyber attack targeting the global financial system. Another iteration of Cyber Polygon is due to take place tomorrow July 9th and will focus on simulating a supply chain cyber attack.

    • Monopolies

      • Patents

        • Supreme Court double patenting decision worth $40 billion to Amgen [Ed: Old but serves to show how obscene patents became; to IAM, promoting patents on everything is like promoting war everywhere because that helps sell bombs (they use this logic, too)]

          The Supreme Court’s decision not to intervene in Sandoz v Immunex leaves concerns over double patenting gamesmanship unaddressed and gives Amgen subsidiary a clear path to almost a decade’s more exclusivity

        • Germany: Despite Criticism: German Bundestag Votes For Introduction Of Proportionality Test In Patent Law

          In the night from 10 to 11 June 2021, the German Bundestag voted in the 2nd/3rd reading in favour of the Federal Government’s bill on the simplification and modernisation of patent law (19/25821) as amended by the Legal Affairs Committee (19/30498).

          As explained in this context on 22 September 2020 and 25 January 2021, the primary purpose of the bill is to better synchronize patent infringement proceedings in civil courts with nullity proceedings in the Federal Patent Court, as well as to improve the protection of confidential information in patent, utility model, and semiconductor litigation.

        • What it means to be in Intellectual Property [Ed: The sheer lunacy. There's no such thing as "Intellectual Property" but they love the misnomer and propaganda term, which they even managed to convince some politicians (lawyers) to embrace.]

          In 2020, inventors and organizations filed approximately 275,000 patent applications through the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) system of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). This represented a 4% increase from 2019 despite the large-scale economic disruption of the coronavirus pandemic, continuing an upward trend since 2010. Given its striking resilience, it is reasonable to project this growth in patent submissions will last long into the future. Some of the top inventive categories in which patents were submitted via the PCT framework in 2020 were computer technology, digital communications, electrical machinery, medical technology, transport and measurement (i.e., gauges of speed, temperature, bandwidth and other metrics).

        • Breaking News: German Federal Constitutional Court rejects PI measures against approval of Agreement on Unified Patent Court (UPC)

          In an eagerly awaited ruling published on 9 July 2021, the German Federal Constitutional Court rejected two applications for preliminary injunctions directed against the German Act of Approval that was adopted on 18 December 2020 for the purposes of ratifying the Agreement of 19 February 2013 on a Unified Patent Court (UPC).

        • Huawei set to launch a smartphone with an Under-display selfie camera [Ed: The UPC that is not a corrupt project of patent litigation profiteers]

          Huawei may be preparing a smartphone with an under-display camera and Audio Jack. Currently, ZTE is the only company commercially selling a smartphone with a selfie camera hidden under the display.

          Samsung and OPPO have also been working on a solution while Google recently acquired a patent hinting the company has figured out a way to make it happen.

          Now, Huawei is on its way to join them after patenting a smartphone with a UPC (Universal Product Code). The patent showcases several models with slight differences in rear camera positioning.

        • Patent cases decline across Europe – but courts report increasing complexity [Ed: Litigation ought not be treated like a business. Patents have lost their way in Europe.]

          On Wednesday, JUVE Patent reported that the seven major patent courts in Germany altogether experienced a 9% drop in new cases in 2020. This result is just one from JUVE Patent’s fourth survey of newly-filed cases at Germany’s patent courts. Now, further research shows the other major European patent courts are experiencing a similar trend.

          Whether in Düsseldorf, Mannheim, Milan, Paris, London or The Hague, the number of newly-filed patent cases is declining almost everywhere. Only in Munich, which recently opened a third patent chamber, did the numbers recently increase.

        • Another week, another mandamus [Ed: Just passing patent cases to courts that operate like corporations and basically cheat to attract more litigation]

          Another week, another mandamus. This case is parallel to In re Samsung discussed earlier where Ikorongo divided its patent rights between Ikorongo-Texas (right to enforce in W.D.Tex.) and Ikorongo-Tech (right to enforce elsewhere in USA). In Samsung, the appellate court rejected this brazen attempt to manipulate venue. Here, the court found “no basis for a disposition different from the ones reached in Samsung” and ordered transfer to N.D.Cal.

        • Opposition by videoconference: a year of progress [Ed: Today the EPO promotes illegal agenda, casually]

          A report published today explains how the EPO, our applicants and the patent profession have successfully navigated a major cultural shift in the conduct of oral proceedings in opposition – namely by videoconference (VICO). The report summarises the considerable progress we have made together since May 2020, in terms of our legal framework, technical infrastructure, training and support to users. Since January 2021 the consent of the parties to VICO has ceased to be a limitation and the EPO has been working steadily to clear the backlog of cases that built up last summer – hearing over 350 cases each month in 2021. The Office is on track to return to a pre-pandemic state as regards the number and timeliness of cases decided in opposition later next year. The experience of Zoom as the preferred VICO platform has been positive, such that it will be expanded in the coming weeks to encompass all oral proceedings, e.g. in examination and before the Receiving Section and Legal Division too.

        • Software Patents

          • How to secure AI patents in Europe [Ed: Disguising illegal software patents as “hey hi” and relying on truly criminal EPO management to slip these slip through; IAM, the litigation industry etc. in bed with EPO corruption (they profit from it)]

            In this co-published piece, Haseltine Lake Kempner partner Caroline Day explains how a good draft could dramatically improve the chances for an AI application at the EPO

            Perhaps more than for any other technology area, the European Patent Office (EPO) has promoted its artificial intelligence (AI) practice proactively in expectation of the wave of AI-related applications that they hope is to come.

[Meme] EPO Telenovela: Sua Vida me Pertence by Tony Campinos

Posted in Europe, Patents at 11:34 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Did Tony say reps are OK? I'll ask my husband

Summary: EPO staff are unable to look up to their managers; the disaster that’s ongoing in Europe’s second-largest institution is only ever deepening

EPO Dictator Campinos Continues Crushing EPO Staff, Outpacing Battistelli in Terms of His Abuses

Posted in Europe, Patents at 11:02 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Campinos slow response
It’s a good thing that Mr. Campinos is not being assessed for “timeliness”

Summary: Any remnants of whatever illusion there may be that Campinos pursues social dialogue with the staff is farcical at best; he’s hiring lawyers at the expense of 6 million euros to attack his own staff and he’s crushing representation like never before in the history of the Office

THE Central Staff Committee (CSC) of the EPO isn’t being alarmist; it’s just writing to express the horrific situation at the EPO — a situation that the German government turns a blind eye to because the EPO is seen as a bottomless cash repository of Germany. Having tolerated Benoît Battistelli for 8 years, and having tolerated António Campinos for over 3 years (even covering up his crimes!), it seems to be ignoring that almost not a single member of staff can trust the so-called ‘leader’ anymore. And later they’ll wonder why the EPO cannot recruit people with the necessary skills, leaving the Office in disarray and patent quality rapidly languishing?

“And later they’ll wonder why the EPO cannot recruit people with the necessary skills, leaving the Office in disarray and patent quality rapidly languishing?”Almost every day we identify stories about failed litigation; the patents perish in courts. European Patents are becoming increasingly synonymous with Invalid Patents (some of these are software patents).

How does Campinos tackle the issue? He’s trying to silence the staff — an own goal for sure! “On 17 June 2021,” the CSC wrote, “Mr Campinos rejected [a modest proposal almost 3 months late!], considering that secretarial support was “not in line with the overall strategy or the time we are living in” (sic!). The decision is yet another attack against the functioning of the EPO staff representation (and against freedom of association).”

“How has Europe ended up this way?”Remember that Campinos had already blacklisted SUEPO, the union, before he treated the CSC similarly. We took note of several examples to that effect in recent months. There’s almost nobody left to talk to. It’s like the Office is run by drones of lobbyists (much like German politicians in the pockets of Team UPC). How has Europe ended up this way? Who’s going to put a stop to it? Is it too late?

The documents from the CSC have just been disseminated among staff; someone sent us copies and those deserve a place in the public domain, so we’re reproducing them below.

Here is the publication about what happened:

Munich, 09-07-2021

Disbanding secretarial support for staff representation

On 31 May 2021, the last secretary of the staff representation retired after having worked in this position in Munich for 25 years. Early March 2021, the Chairmen of the Local Staff Committee in The Hague and Munich had filed, at the request of Mr Campinos, a “business case” for secretarial support. On 17 June 2021, Mr Campinos rejected it, considering that secretarial support was “not in line with the overall strategy or the time we are living in” (sic!) The decision is yet another attack against the functioning of the staff representation.

The end of a permanent contact point
Over the years and after each election, the composition of a staff committee evolves. In the middle of changes, the secretariat of a staff committee serves as a professional and permanent contact point ensuring continuity of service to some 7000 staff members, visitors, staff associations of other international organisations and to the EPO administration. This role was fulfilled for more than 30 years by EPO administrative employees, some of whom worked as well part-time in another departments. In order to maintain secretaries at this post, the Chair of the staff committee simply needed to fill in a “staff deblocking request”, which was automatically granted. Shortly after Mr Campinos took up his post in 2018, the future of the secretariat was discussed in the Working Group on Staff Representation Resources and we felt he was reluctant to replace retiring secretaries: it was “a red line for the President”, as his services put it.

A “business case”?
Although Mr Campinos had already made up his mind, he requested a “business case” for secretarial support. For Mr Campinos, everything needs a business case but is subject to an assessment of his own, where his personal taste may simply take precedence (e.g. the glass walls of the “Isar Daylight project”). In early March 2021, the Chairmen of the Local Staff Committee in The Hague and Munich filed the “business case”1 for secretarial support.

1 “Business case for permanent support administrative employees for the Staff Committees”, Letter from the Local Chairs of Munich and The Hague to Mr Campinos, 12 March 2021 (sc21089cp)

On 17 June 2021, Mr Campinos rejected2 it with the argument that secretarial support was considered “to be not in line with the overall strategy or the time we are living in” (sic!). The poorness of this conclusion shows that laziness of thought and oversimplification prevail when it comes to staff representation matters.

Secretary – more than a task, a profession
Secretaries (also called executive or management assistants) have multiple roles. They are documentalists (classify and archive), organisers (for meetings, training and travels) and editors. Mr Campinos seems to suggest that secretaries have no future with his New Normal, although he has recently created a professional network for them3. Even in a digital and paperless environment these tasks still need to be done. In an Office with an exploding number of cumbersome tools and time spent in online meetings, secretaries, and resilient ones at that, are needed more than ever. Ultimately, by implying that secretarial support is a task that anyone can perform on the side, Mr Campinos is denigrating staff who are actually in a profession that requires special skills acquired through studies, training and certification.

The decision is another attack against staff and its representation. While Mr Campinos has increased staff representation time since 2018 (but never to 2013 levels), he is now depriving staff of a permanent contact point and their representatives will have less time to directly advocate for staff interests. What Mr Campinos gives with one hand, he takes away with the other.

The Central Staff Committee

2 Letter of reply from Mr Campinos, 17 June 2021 (re21090cl)
3 See Intranet publication of 22 April 2021: “Launching the MA Professional Network at the EPO”

Here is the item cited in footnote 1:

12 March 2021

Business Case for permanent support administrative employees for the Staff Committees

Problem statement:
Without the support of a permanent administrative secretary for all staff committees:
• the elected staff representatives must dedicate time and training from their time budget to perform the administrative tasks currently under the responsibility of the administrative secretary (JG 6).
• non- availability of a single contact point, five days per week for staff and the Administration.
• non-continuity between different staff committees throughout time. Elected staff representatives come and go, their knowledge leaves with them. With dedicated administrative staff, continuity would be made possible, which would benefit the Office and staff alike.

Experience proves that having one secretary only for the four sites on a 50%-basis time exemption will not address the problem. Therefore we ask for two administrative secretaries on a 50%-basis, one located in The Hague and one in Munich.

Background: The tasks of the Administrative Employees who will dedicate the equivalent of 1 FTE to Staff Representation secretarial support are:

1. Permanent contact point: Serve as permanent contact point between the Staff Representation and both the Staff and the EPO administration. Attend colleagues and visitors. Provide information to colleagues upon request.

2. Archiving and documentation activities: Archive the correspondence/documents of all Staff Committees and keep track of past activities. Organise, classify and maintain the documentation, manage the archives, databases, website and files in paper and electronic form. Continue the introduction of an e-archive from present to past. Spot urgent emails and forward them to the competent member(s) in charge according to the importance and urgency of the request. Treat correspondence mails and letters and record them accordingly in paper and electronic form.

3. Publication and communication support: Produce, format and edit documents, letters, communications, briefs and publications for the EPO intranet (estimated amount: 150 a year). Oversee the Staff representation’s SharePoint and Microsoft Teams Channels. Handle incoming/outgoing letters and other correspondence. Perform any other tasks to support the efficient running and services between the four Local Staff Committees. Reply to telephone calls and transfer to the appropriate person(s) (for example in case of a request for assistance). Update Excel files, e.g. contact lists, staff changes on regular basis.

4. Duty travel support: Organise duty travel deputise for authorising duty travel requests for the Staff Committee members.

5. Training support: Arrange and collect input for individual and group trainings for Staff Committee members.

6. Logistic support: Book meeting rooms and organise meetings and videoconferences, including managing of invitations and preparatory documents.

7. Support project management: Maintain project plans, monitor deadlines and follow-up of action points.

It is expected that most of the work time would be dedicated to tasks 1), 2), and 3).

Objective and requirements

Within the framework of Circular 356, the Local Staff Committees The Hague and Munich are looking each for one Administrative Employee who will dedicate 50% of their working time to this duty, while continuing with their current duties for the remaining amount of their working time. They would be recruited internally from amongst staff members in Job Group 6. Permanent and employees on fixed-term contracts would be invited to apply by internal note (Category III of job mobility policy).

The job profile entails:
• a wide variety of tasks in a changing / evolving environment;
• organisational skills;
• communication and diplomatic skills.

The vacant positions would be advertised as soon as possible to ensure continuity of


Under continuity and workload aspects there aren’t actually any viable alternatives: continuity can only be assured by staff not subject to election by staff or to the limitation of the number of consecutive mandates: elected staff representatives come and go, their knowledge leaves with them. With dedicated administrative staff who could take over the above tasks, continuity would be achieved, to the benefit of the Office and staff alike. The cost would be more than offset by the improved professionality, quality, consistency and continuity of administrative processes between the Administration and the Staff Representation.
Having a staff representative perform the above tasks is, apart from the lack of necessary skills and training, difficult to accept for an elected staff representative who joined the staff representation to be directly involved with staff matters. It would mean to be restricted to spending the available time on administrative tasks only. Representatives have to concentrate on their mandate as defined in the ServRegs and confirmed by their electorate. The time of this staff representative would be “lost” for the normal staff representative work, and would need to be redistributed to the other staff representatives.

Tasks 1) and 2), are very time consuming, and cannot be easily distributed among several staff representatives. They need to be executed by the same persons for reasons of consistency, efficiency and in order to limit possible errors to a minimum. The current situation in the local staff representation The Hague which has to cope without administrative support since mid-2017 proves the incompatibility: onlytask 1) has been rotated among several staff representatives and, despite best efforts and considerable amount of dedicated time, there have been several instances of delays and errors in the communication process. And most importantly, the time and effort dedicated to these administrative tasks, have resulted in stress-related health issues which has also negatively impacted their examiner work. Clearly an unsustainable situation, which represents a lose-lose situation for the staff representatives and the EPO.

The lack of an administrative secretary as the permanent contact person between the Staff Representation and both the Staff and the EPO administration will introduce delays and risks of issues due to legal deadlines. In addition, the archive will not be updated and maintained for future staff representatives who would not be able to find relevant documents that are needed to support staff members and to efficiently exchange with the Administration.

Action plan: as soon as possible: open a call for candidates for two positions of administrative secretaries for the Staff Committees. Based on the list of tasks and available skills of the successful candidates, determine how to distribute tasks between the two and allocate time and resources to optimise the two half posts.

Currently, there is only one administrative secretary left on a 50%-basis time exemption, who is retiring end of May. In order to organise for a smooth handover of the important tasks, the call for candidates is urgent.

Summary: The two administrative secretaries who will be responsible to support the Staff Committees would serve as the connecting line between the four local committees. In addition, the secretaries would guarantee a stable relationship with the counterparts in the EPO administration and serve as contact points for both staff and EPO administration. They would help the elected staff representatives to concentrate on their mandate as defined in the ServRegs and confirmed by their electorate. Any other alternative is detrimental to the quality of the work in representing the interests of staff. The positions of administrative secretaries offer a diversification of tasks, present a challenge and provide prospects for individual development for possible future positions.

The Local Chairs of Munich and The Hague

Michael Kemény

Jorge Raposo

Here is the item cited in footnote 2:

European Patent Office | 80298 MUNICH | GERMANY

Your letter of 12.03.2021

Mr Michael Kemény
Mr Jorge Raposo

Via email: ████████@epo.org; ████████@epo.org
cc : ████████@epo.org

Dear Mr Kemény, dear Mr Raposo,

Thank you for your letter dated 12 March 2021 describing your business case for permanent secretarial support for the Local Staff Committees in Munich and The Hague.

The Office understands that you request two permanent administrative staff on a 50%-basis (overall 1 FTE), one located in The Hague and one located in Munich, to provide secretarial support to the Local Staff Committees. Your request is described in view of (i) replacing an administrative employee, who has performed administrative support to staff representation on a 50%-basis and retired end of May and (ii) the need for additional administrative support due to your experience that one administrative employee at 50% is not sufficient to cover all sites.

The services have assessed your request.

As indicated during the CSC-President meeting on 19 May 2021, there are some elements from your request that need to be addressed.

First, you mention the need for coordination. In our view, coordination, including being central points of contact, could be seen as part of the activities of the chairs or assigned to any other staff committee member.

Second, duty travel has decreased significantly due to the pandemic situation and video-conferencing has proved to be a reliable and safe tool to support our organisation and objectives in line with the Office’s new environmental policy.

And last but not least, in view of the progressing digitalisation of our work environment, a general review of secretarial and administrative tasks is required. With advanced digitalisation, the need for the classical secretariat work such as document and email management, printing, logistical support or other administrative tasks should gradually diminish or be handled by staff committee members. Furthermore staff representation time has continuously been increased over the last years.

It is in this light that the Office considers your request to be not aligned with the overall Office strategy or the times we are living in.

On the basis of the information provided, the request cannot be endorsed.

Yours sincerely,

António Campinos

So while the EPO posts rainbows and nonsense about ViCo in its “news” section (exploiting civil rights issues for self-congratulatory whitewash) it is actively attacking all of its own staff in a fashion not even Battistelli did. But nothing to see here, move along, said EU officials and the German authorities… doing so at their own peril.

Links 12/7/2021: Linux 5.14 RC1 and More Microsoft E.E.E.

Posted in News Roundup at 6:01 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • 9to5Linux Weekly Roundup: July 11th, 2021

      This week has been great on distro releases, we got the final release of Linux Mint 20.2 “Uma” and Solus 4.3, as well as a new release of the educational oriented Escuelas Linux. In addition, we got a new release of the Nextcloud Hub, KDE Plasma 5.22 desktop, KDE Frameworks software suite, and Tor Browser.

    • Linux Weekly Roundup #138

      We had another wonderful week in the world of Linux releases with ArcoLinux 21.07.3, Linux Mint 20.2, Endless OS 3.9.5, Bluestar Linux 5.12.15, Solus 4.3, and Robolinux 12.07.

    • Microsoft’s Internal Linux Distribution “CBL-Mariner” Continues Maturing [Ed: Phoronix is doing promotional Microsoft puff pieces again]

      CBL-Mariner is security-focused, makes use of RPMs with DNF / Tiny DNF for package management, various installation types, and more. But again it’s not aiming to be a general purpose Linux distribution but one that various Microsoft engineering teams can use for their different varying use-cases.

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • Using IceWM and a Raspberry Pi as my main PC, sharing my theme, config and some tips and tricks.

        KDE is my desktop environment of choice. KDE5 is rock-solid, configurable in any way possible and works great. It treats you like a responsible adult instead of a child like GNOME does these days, and after XFCE switched to GTK3, the RAM usage is on-par, more often than not a bare KDE install (Debian or Arch) uses around 300MB ram. This is with Baloo (search indexer) and Akonadi (PIM database backend) disabled. Great default behaviour, low resource usage and enourmous configurability, so why is this post then titled ‘IceWM’? At home I’m using a small ARM device (Raspberry Pi 4 with an SSD) as my main computer, and there resources are limited. KDE runs fine, but you notice that it is a bit slower than on my work computer. IceWM on the other hand, uses less than 30 MB of RAM and even less CPU. The program that gives you a desktop background, icewmbg, uses double the RAM of IceWM itself! IceWM, next to Awesome, is one of my favorite window managers, very configurable and provides all I need. This PC doesn’t have multiple screens, which would be a bit more of a hassle than with KDE. After switching, the machine feels a lot faster. It’s the small details in which I notice it, like text input, a few seconds of lag here and there. This post shows my IceWM config including some options explained, my IceWM theme and a few tips and tricks to configure the rest of the desktop.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • Linux Action News 197

        Open Source’s best hope for alternatives to Microsoft and Google gets a significant update this week, and we cover a plethora of new goodies coming to a Linux near you soon.

        Plus, our take on the Audacity fork drama and the milestone reached this week that none of us have been looking forward to.

      • Josh Bressers: Episode 279 – The audacity of Audacity: When open source goes rogue

        Josh and Kurt talk about the events happening to the Audacity audio editor. What happens if a popular open source application is acquired by an unknown entity? Can this happen to other open source projects? What can we do about it?

    • Kernel Space

      • Linus Torvalds Announces First Linux 5.14 Kernel Release Candidate

        Two weeks have passed since the release the Linux 5.13 kernel series and now the merge window for Linux kernel 5.14 is closed as Linus Torvalds just announced today the availability for public testing of the first Release Candidate (RC) milestone.

        While most GNU/Linux distributions are still struggling to upgrade their kernels to Linux 5.13, which already got its first point release and it’s marked as “stable” on the kernel.org website, the kernel developers are busy again with the next major release, Linux kernel 5.14.

        The first Release Candidate (RC) is now ready for public testing, as announced by Linus Torvalds, who says that it includes about 13k commits from approximately 1650 developers. Once again, there are big changes for AMD GPU hardware, and all IDE support is now based on libata.

      • Linux kernel sheds IDE support, but driver-dominated 5.14 rc1 still grows

        Linus Torvalds has loosed the first release candidate for version 5.14 of the Linux kernel,

        Torvalds’ remarks about the new release open with his hopes that this release cycle is smooth, along with observations that the size of a release does not correlate with whether the process is calm.

        He then encouraged developers to “ignore – once again – another set of big AMD GPU hardware description header files” present in this cut of the kernel.

        “We seem to have those fairly regularly,” he wrote, “and they are always these huge generated headers that end up dwarfing everything else. Almost exactly half of the whole 5.14-rc1 patch is comprised of those GPU headers, and it skews the statistics a lot.”

      • Linux 5.14-rc1
        You all know the drill by now. It's been the usual two weeks of merge
        window, and not it's closed, and 5.14-rc1 is out there.
        As usual, it's much too big to post the shortlog, with about 13k
        commits (an another ~800 merge commits) by about 1650 developers, and
        a diffstat summary of
        11859 files changed, 817707 insertions(+), 285485 deletions(-)
        Appended is my mergelog which gives you an overview of what I've
        pulled during the merge window, and who I pulled from. And as usual, I
        want to stress how this is obviously just a very high-level summary,
        and tiny part of the actual developer community - if you want the full
        details of all those changes, you'll have to go to the -git tree.
        On the whole, I don't think there are any huge surprises in here, and
        size-wise this seems to be a pretty regular release too. Let's hope
        that that translates to a nice and calm release cycle, but you never
        know. Last release was big, but it was all fairly calm despite that,
        so size isn't always the determining factor here..
        If somebody wants to look at the actual diff for the release, I'd
        encourage you to ignore - once again - another set of big AMD GPU
        hardware description header files. We seem to have those fairly
        regularly, and they are always these huge generated headers that end
        up dwarfing everything else. Almost exactly half of the whole 5.14-rc1
        patch is comprised of those GPU headers, and it skews the statistics a
        Now, even if you ignore that AMD header drop, drivers account for over
        two thirds of the changes when you look at the diff, and that's
        perfectly normal. What's slightly less usual is how there's a lot of
        line _removals_ in there, with the old IDE layer finally having met
        its long-overdue demise, and all our IDE support is now based on
        Of course, the fact that we removed all that legacy IDE code doesn't
        mean that we had a reduction in lines over-all: a few tens of
        thousands of lines of legacy code is nowhere near enough to balance
        out the usual kernel growth. But it's still a nice thing to see the
        So drivers dominate: even when ignoring the AMD header addition
        there's a fair amount of gpu updates, but there's networking drivers,
        rdma, sound, scsi, staging, media...
        Outside of drivers, there's all the usual suspects: architecture
        updates (arm, arm64, x86, powerpc, s390, with a smattering of other
        architecture updates too) and various core kernel updates: networking,
        filesystems, VM, scheduling etc. And the usual documentation and
        tooling (perf and self-tests) updates.
        Please do test, and we can get the whole calming-down period rolling
        and hopefully get a timely final 5.14 release.
      • Linux 5.14-rc1 Released – Big GPU Drivers Update, Secret Memory Option + Core Scheduling – Phoronix

        Following the two-week long merge window, the first release candidate to Linux 5.14 is now available with all the shiny new features to be found in this next kernel release.

        Linus Torvalds commented in the 5.14-rc1 announcement, “On the whole, I don’t think there are any huge surprises in here, and size-wise this seems to be a pretty regular release too. Let’s hope that that translates to a nice and calm release cycle, but you never know. Last release was big, but it was all fairly calm despite that, so size isn’t always the determining factor here..”

      • Kernel prepatch 5.14-rc1

        Linus has released 5.14-rc1 and closed the merge window for this development cycle…

      • Graphics Stack

        • Process_Reap Syscall Proposed For Linux To More Quickly Reclaim Memory Under Pressure

          While there are the likes of OOMD / systemd-oomd gaining acceptance as a daemon for Linux systems to deal with killing off processes and other behavior under system memory (RAM) pressure, there still is an issue of the time it takes until the memory is reclaimed by those dying processes. Google engineers at the end of June proposed “process_reap” as a new system call to help in that memory recovery.

          The proposed process_reap system call is designed to reclaim memory of a dying process from the context of the caller. Using process_reap should allow the memory to be freed faster with the CPU affinity and priority of the caller. Process_reap can only be used on processes that are dying via SIGKILL such as when triggered via out-of-memory / memory pressure daemons.

    • Applications

      • Linux for Starters: Your Guide to Linux – Get Started with the Terminal – Part 9

        This is a series that offers a gentle introduction to Linux for newcomers.

        The desktop environment with its bundle of programs sharing a common graphical user interface (GUI) remains a firm favorite with users. That’s unsurprising as a good desktop environment makes computing fun and simple. The graphical desktop environment has become so ingrained in almost everyone’s computer activities that it might seem the shell would fade away. Yet there’s still an important role to play for the shell and accompanying terminal-based software.

        What’s a shell? What’s a terminal? The shell is a program that takes commands from the keyboard and gives them to the operating system to perform. On Ubuntu, the default shell is bash (which stands for Bourne Again SHell). The terminal is really a program called a terminal emulator. This is software that lets you interact with the shell.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • Set up temperature sensors in your home with a Raspberry Pi

        It’s HOT! I suppose I can’t complain too much about living in paradise, but when my wife and I moved to Hawaii last fall, I didn’t really think too much about the weather. Don’t get me wrong, the weather is lovely pretty much all the time, and we keep our windows open 24/7, but that means it is pretty warm in the house right now in the middle of summer.

        So, where does all this humble bragging intersect with open source? Well, we’re planning to get a whole-house fan—one of those big ones that suck all the air out of your house and force it into the attic, pushing all the hot air out of the attic in the process. I am sure this will make the house way cooler, but the geek in me wants to know just how much cooler.

      • How to Install GitLab on Ubuntu 20.04

        GitLab is a web-based tool which provides a Git repository manager and DevOps lifecycle tool. It is a feature rich tool that offers issue tracking, continuous integration, deployment pipeline.

        GitLab comes with two distributions: the Enterprise Edition and the Community Edition. GitLab community edition is opensource. Enterprise edition comes with additional features.

        In this tutorial we learn how to install GitLab Community Edition on Ubuntu 20.04.

      • Use of fstab option for Mounting Disk in Linux Permanent Complete Guide

        Mounting disk in Linux is actually a process to access a partitioned and formatted hard disk in the system. Whatever data is stored in a hard disk can only be accessed or used after mounting that hard disk in Linux Operating System. As we know when a pen drive is inserted in the USB slot of Windows system, the pen drive will automatically be available for access in the windows home folder. This is only due to “plug and play” options installed in Windows operating system. But, in Linux, inserting or connecting a hard disk in the system, is not enough to access that disk. Before accessing it, the hard disk has to partitioned, formatted followed by mounting it in the system. However, the hard disk can be mounted with any of the single or multiple folder of Linux system. There is no restriction of mounting location of that hard disk. The following diagram is explained the basic difference between inserting a hard disk in Linux and Windows operating system.

      • How to install Synfig Studio on Linux Lite 5.4

        In this video, we are looking at how to install Synfig Studio on Linux Lite 5.4.

      • How to install Friday Night Funkin’: Mic’d Up on a Chromebook

        Today we are looking at how to install Friday Night Funkin’: Mic’d Up on a Chromebook. Please follow the video/audio guide as a tutorial where we explain the process step by step and use the commands below.

      • How to Setup Chroot SFTP Server in Linux

        SFTP (Secure File Transfer Protocol) is a secure version of FTP protocol that uses Secure Shell (SSH) to transfer files. It is similar to SCP, but it has access to various SSH operations like changing file permission and ownership, downloading credential files, etc. which we don’t want to allow over SFTP protocol. By default, SFTP uses the standard SFTP so we need to configure the chroot jail environment for all the SFTP users. In simple terms, we can say it’s a jail environment that prevents users from changing directories.

      • How to Find a File in Linux in All Directories complete Guide for Beginner

        Find a file in windows is very easy just go in search bar and search file by name. it is only possible, if your computer has graphical interface in Linux.

        Searching files in Windows are easy, Just go to the search box and type your query (name of the file), and hit enter, you will get the result of all files with the name. it happens only in the graphical user interface.

        The GUI (Graphical User Interface) is not available in the Linux operating system every time, but the command line interface is available always.

        To find a file by name, size, type, etc in the graphical interface is quite easy, And it is not really so easy in CLI (Command Line Interface).

        In this article, I am going to cover “How to find a file in Linux by using CLI mode.

      • Converseen for Batch Processing Images on Linux – It’s FOSS

        Converseen is a free and open source software for batch image conversion. With this tool, you can convert multiple images to another format, resize, change their aspect ratio, rotate or flip them all at once.

        This is a handy tool for someone like me who has to deal with multiple screenshots of different size but has to resize them all before uploading to the website.

        Batch conversion tools help a lot in such cases. This could be done in the Linux command line with the wonderful ImageMagick but a GUI tool is a lot easier to use here. Actually, Converseen uses ImageMagick underneath the Qt-based GUI.

      • Chrome OS 91 broke Linux, here’s the workaround

        Last week, numerous Chromebook users reported a CPU-crippling bug had arrived in the latest incremental update to version 91 of Chrome OS. Shortly thereafter, Google pumped the brakes on the update and paused the server which essentially reverted the most current version of Chrome OS to the previous 91.0.4472.114 that rolled out in mid-June. For users on the newer version that weren’t experiencing massive CPU usage, there was really nothing to do. The update should be working properly and reverting isn’t a necessity. For those who did roll back or perhaps never updated in the first place, an unforeseen side effect of the pause appeared in the form of a broken Linux container.

      • Create Multiboot USB Linux with Ventoy – Linux Hint

        This tutorial explains how to create a multiboot USB in Linux in which you just need to copy any ISO you want to boot. After reading this tutorial you’ll know how to create within a minute a multiboot USB containing multiple operating systems such as different Linux distributions or Microsoft Windows.

      • Linux DU Command with Examples – Linux Hint

        ‘du’ stands for the disc usage in a system. It is used to identify the usage of space by the files present in the system that causes the disc storage space to run out of the provided space. The du command uses different options and flags to get used to the command and to know about the disk space left in your system.

        If you want to have the summary of the usage of the disk storage of the current directory that is in use on your system, then you will use this keyword as a command on the terminal.

      • Convert xcf to jpg with Gimp – Linux Hint

        This brief tutorial explains how to convert xcf files to jpg or any other image type using Gimp.
        First, click on the File menu located on Gimp’s top left corner, as shown in the image below.

      • Display Contents Of A Text File On Command Line Linux – Linux Hint

        In Linux, we constantly work with text files such as configuration files, source codes, web pages, and many others. Hence, it is essential to have a quick view of the contents of a text file in the command line before editing the file.

        This quick guide aims to show you various approaches you can use to list the contents of a text file in the terminal.

      • How to install Siege on Ubuntu – Linux Hint

        Siege is an open-source regression test and benchmark utility used to stress test a website URL with several simulated users accessing a website. Developers can check the performance of their code using Siege. It works by hitting a web server simultaneously with many concurrent users. These users put the webserver under stress for a configurable period or until a manual interrupts the user running the Siege program.

      • How to Check if SSH is Running on Linux – Linux Hint

        SSH is a cryptographic network protocol that lets you control and modifies a remote computer over the internet. This protocol ensures security even through a vulnerable network. Most of the Linux distros use OpenSSH, an open-source project implementing the SSH protocol.

        In this guide, we’ll demonstrate how to verify if SSH is running on Linux.

      • How to Find Hardware Details Ubuntu GUI? – Linux Hint

        Everybody checks their computer’s hardware details from time to time. These details include information about RAM, processor, motherboard, GPU, and much more. Through this information, we can gauge how strong a computer is, what kind of drivers it needs, and its configuration. Hardware details are essential knowledge for a computer user; therefore, we will be discussing the best 5 GUI tools you can use to view them.

      • How to Check and Install CentOS Security Updates – Linux Hint

        Checking for updates and installing them as soon as they are available is highly recommended as it makes your system more secure, stable, and less vulnerable to security threats.

        When developers find any bugs in the system, they try to fix them as early as possible. Then, they give out the new fixed system as a security update. Security updates also have unique features.

        This precise and to-the-point article will learn how to check for system security updates by two different methods: A) Manual B) Automatic.

        Let’s first learn to install security updates manually.

      • How to do Firewall Configuration in CentOS 8 – Linux Hint

        To get started with the Firewall configuration in any Operating system, we first need to understand what a Firewall is and what it does. So let’s learn about Firewall first.

        What is a firewall?

        A firewall, in simple words, is a system used for network security by monitoring, controlling, and filtering the network traffic(incoming or outgoing). We can set some security rules if we want to allow or block some specific traffic. So, for the security of the system, a well-configured firewall is essential.

      • How to Create Home Directory for a User on CentOS 8 – Linux Hint

        Administrators on Linux have to be very careful when it comes to user management for security reasons. They have to assign different levels of Sudo privileges to other users. Sometimes, they may even have to create users without a home directory. Those users can have a home directory later in CentOS 8.

        This post contains a detailed explanation of how to create a user with or without a home directory. Later, we will also learn how to create a home directory for a user which already exists. So let’s begin.

        To run the commands mentioned in this article, you will have to have Sudo privileges or log in as a root user.

      • How to Add a Directory to PATH on CentOS 8 – Linux Hint

        PATH is an environmental variable present in almost all major operating systems that define a set of directories where executable programs are located. Programs and scripts located in the directories specified in $PATH can be executed directly without specifying their path.

        Executable programs like ls, find, and the file is located at different directories in an Operating system. When a person inputs a command, the system looks for an executable program (with the same name) in the directories specified in $PATH.

        In this post, you will learn in detail how to add directories to $PATH in CentOS 8.

    • Distributions

      • New Releases

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • 10 signs of an IT leader with a growth mindset

          Organizational psychologist Carol Dweck made a name for herself measuring the impact of mindset on human performance. More than a decade ago, she synthesized her research on the subject in her book Mindset: The New Psychology of Success. In that book, Dweck distinguished people with “fixed mindsets”, who believe that basic qualities like intelligence or talent are static, from those with “growth mindsets,” who believe that they can develop talents and capabilities over time through effort. Those who fall in the latter group, Dweck found, thrive on challenge; as a result, they are better at problem solving and adapting to change.

          It’s no surprise, then, that her study of personality has grown in popularity among business leaders in recent years of continual and often dramatic shifts. Indeed, some companies like Microsoft, have institutionalized her work and built entire business strategies around it.

        • Teradata customers express terror as field-based hardware support outsourced to IBM on both sides of the pond

          Sources fear Big Blue lacks knowledge to keep systems running smoothly

          Teradata is outsourcing field-based support on both sides of the pond to IBM, much to the alarm of some customers who fear a loss of knowledge in keeping its trusted on-prem systems up and running.

          The global data warehouse stalwart made its name with tightly integrated software and hardware systems sold as analytics “appliances”, but in the last two years has shifted focus to its cloud platform following fierce competition from so-called cloud-native rivals including Snowflake, AWS, Microsoft, and Google.

      • Debian Family

        • Review: siduction 21.1.1

          siduction is a Debian-based distribution first released in 2011. What makes it unique is that it is one of the few Debian-based distros based off the Unstable branch (commonly known as Debian Sid, hence the name siduction). Although Debian is well known to be a very stable distro, some people look for more recent and up to date software that a rolling release distro would provide. Some common rolling release distros that are more well known are the Tumbleweed branch of openSUSE, Arch Linux, and Gentoo, and the never ending list of distros based off these. The reason siduction is such a powerful distro is that it is maintained by its community, therefore it is curated slightly more than Debian Sid. In my use case, Debian stable provides xorg-server version 1.20.4 but I require at least version 1.20.6 to properly use the NVIDIA card in my laptop with the new(ish) prime render offloading. xorg-server currently is at version 1.20.11 at the time of writing this, and siduction provides the most current version.


          The siduction live USB boots to the desktop environment you chose on the download page – KDE Plasma, Cinnamon, LXDE, LXQt, Xfce, Xorg, and a no X version are available. For this review I used the KDE Plasma desktop environment because it is a very popular choice. I was actually quite disappointed there is no GNOME desktop version available for installation from siduction, although you could choose the Xorg version and install GNOME manually – but this would be not very beginner friendly. GNOME is easily one of the most popular desktop environments, far more popular than LXDE, Cinnamon, and LXQt, however I understand that these desktop environments have their own use cases such as low RAM usage, Qt environment, or GTK in the case of Xfce. I’m still shocked there is no GNOME version available from the downloads page.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Programming/Development

        • How to Reverse a String In C – Linux Hint

          In string coding, string reversal is a crucial topic. There are also several methods for reversing a string, each of which has a different logic. This article will show you how to properly reverse a string to use several distinct approaches and reasoning with and without requiring any preset functions. Whenever the reversal of a string technique is applied in a particular unique input string, the text that a consumer would supply in a specific order will be completely reversed. In the instance beneath, different alternatives of reversing a string with C have been employed.

          When implementing this guide, we have been working on Ubuntu 20.04 Linux system configured on Virtual Box. While working on a Linux system, we used to do most of our installations and queries on the terminal shell. Hence, open the terminal shell by a shortcut “Ctrl+Alt+T” or search it via an application search bar under the Activity area of the Ubuntu desktop. It is necessary to update your system first via the apt update query. It will ask you for the current user password to run the update. Hence, add a password and press Enter button.

        • Using Strings in C with Examples – Linux Hint

          Strings are just a one-dimensional collection of characters with the null character ‘0’ at the end. On the other hand, a null-terminated string includes the characters that make up the string, succeeded by a zero. In this article, you will learn about how to deal with strings in Ubuntu 20.02 Linux system. Make sure you have GCC compiler installed in the system. Now open the terminal via Ctrl+Alt+T to get started.

        • How to Initialize a std::vector in C++ with Examples – Linux Hint

          The full path of a file or folder from the root directory is specified by absolute path. In Python, the Current Working Directory is set to the directory location from where the python script executes. Many modules exist in python to get the Current Working Directory. How to get the Current Working Directory in Python is explained in this article.

        • Arrow -> Operator in C with Examples – Linux Hint

          To understand the working of the Arrow operator, we need to understand what pointer is first. In C++, pointer exists as a mutable, which always refers to the location of some other mutable of almost any data kind, such as an int, char, or float, since we’ve already taught. A pointer to structures could be used likewise, with a pointer mutable pointing to the location of such a structure mutable. Throughout C/C++, the Arrow operator may be used to access items in Unions plus Structures. It can be used in conjunction with such a pointer variable that points to a structure and union. A negative sign precedes the greater than mark to construct the arrow operator. Throughout C or C++, the -> operator assigns the content of the mutable name to the structural or union mutable pointer name.

        • Bitwise operators in C with Examples – Linux Hint

          The bitwise operators have been used to manipulate data only at the bit level. Bit-level computing would be done when you execute bitwise operations. It comprises two numbers, one of which is 0 and the other one is 1. It’s mainly used to speed up mathematical calculations. Inside the C language, we use several sorts of bitwise operators as below. Let’s discuss each one of them one by one. At the time of implementing this guide article, we have been working on Ubuntu 20.04 Linux system. We have successfully logged in from the system and installed the GCC compiler to compile C language code. Without a compiler, we are unable to execute our C script. After that, we have used the Ctrl+Alt+T key shortcut to open the terminal shell, as we have been doing every implementation and execution on a shell.

        • Perl/Raku

          • TWC 120: Task #1, Swap Odd/Even bits & Task #2, Clock Angle

            I was just going to use a variation on last week’s “Nybble Swap” task for this, but then I foolishly thought, “No, I’ve read Hacker’s Delight I should twiddle bits!”

            Okay, now that I told you about my first mistake, let me tell you, the bit twiddling was fun once it started working but I do have a little regret that it’s straightforward bit-twiddling: I created a bit mask to pick out alternating bits, then just did the shifting and OR-ing you would expect to switch the even/odd bits. I can’t help but wonder if there isn’t some clever one-liner in Hacker’s Delight. I can’t claim to have remembered it even once though: I skimmed the book.
            But I didn’t use arrays and array indexing tricks, like I did on the nybble-swap, so I did learn something and that something is this: Once you start using bigint, you have to start thinking in a paranoid way like you do in python, “This assignment will just create a pointer, I need to make a copy.” Since I’m the type who hits :w reflexively when at a lull in VIM, this isn’t too outrageous for my sensibilities … until I had to make a copy of the number 2 in a my declaration. That seemed a little much.

        • Python

          • How to Read YAML File in Python – Linux Hint

            The full form of YAML is Yet Another Mark-up Language. This file format is very popular now to store serialized data that is human-readable. It is mainly used for configuration files, but it can be used for other purposes also. Different types of scalar data such as number, string, etc., and compound data such as list, the dictionary can be the content of this file. The extension of this fie is ‘.yaml’. Multiple modules exist in Python to read the YAML file. The use of the PyYAML module to read the YAML file in Python has shown in this tutorial.

          • How to Read Binary Files in Python – Linux Hint

            The file that contains the binary data is called a binary file. Any formatted or unformatted binary data is stored in a binary file, and this file is not human-readable and is used by the computer directly. When a binary file is required to read or transfer from one location to another location, the file’s content is converted or encoded into a human-readable format. The extension of the binary file is .bin. The content of the binary file can be read by using a built-in function or module. Different ways to read binary files in Python have been shown in this tutorial.

          • How to Read from stdin in Python – Linux Hint

            Take input from the user is an important part of any programming language. The output of the many programs depends on the standard input. The way of taking input from the user is different for different programming languages. Many ways exist in python to read from the standard input. The input() function is the most common way is to read from the standard input, which is a built-in function. The sys.stdin is another way is to read from the standard input the calls input() function internally. Python has another module named fileinput for reading the standard input. The input() function of this module can be used to read standard input or read content from one or more files. Different ways to read from the standard input in Python have been explained in this tutorial.

          • How to Get Current Working Directory in Python – Linux Hint

            The file or folder name can be used with the full path or just mentioning the file or folder name only to use it in the script. The full path of a file or folder from the root directory is specified by absolute path. When the file name is used without the pathname in the script, then the Current Working Directory is assumed as the file’s pathname and is called the relative path. In Python, the Current Working Directory is set to the directory location from where the python script executes. Many modules exist in python to get the Current Working Directory. The ways to retrieve the Current Working Directory by using different modules in Python have shown in this tutorial.

          • Sort () V/s Sorted () – Linux Hint

            Sorting is a technique to rearrange the elements or data either in ascending order or descending order. In Python programming, we can do sorting very easily with the help of the methods sort () and sorted ().

            The sorted () and sort () methods arrange the elements either in ascending or descending order. Even both perform the same operations, but still, they are different.

            For these tutorials, users must have some basic ideas about the list, tuples, and sets. We will be using some basic operations of these data structures to show a clear picture of sort () and sorted () built-in methods. And for this, I am using Python3, so if you are using Python2, then there might be some output difference.

          • Remove An Item From A List In Python Using Clear, Pop, Remove And Del

            In this notebook, I will go over different ways of removing items from Python list.

        • Shell/Bash/Zsh/Ksh

          • Why Bash and GNU Readline’s “bracketed paste” mode is not for us

            Our pragmatic reason is that we are almost always pasting from our own instructions, which we obviously trust. In addition, we do this sort of pasting quite a bit. Since our own source text is trusted, an extra step to accept them is both annoying and almost certainly ineffective at avoiding mistakes. Since we know the source is trusted, we’re extremely unlikely to pause, look at what we’re about to hit Return on, and realize we’ve pasted the wrong thing, especially since we do this all the time.

          • best of .bashrc

            Or, actually, .bash_aliases – but that’s not as fun to say

            On this page I’ve gathered some selected bits and pieces from my .bash_aliases file. Apart from the selection of hacks and scripts available on this site, these are the homemade contraptions I use most frequently when farting around with my computer.

  • Leftovers

    • Farewell, Hanlon

      There are people who willfully twist the truth, cherry-pick, distort, lie, out of malice. And there are people who do all those same actions but out of some psychological hangup; they believe in the greater “truth” of their position and they can’t help themselves from sorting their inputs accordingly. And then there are those who are just genuinely and temporarily misinformed.

      “Never” attribute to malice has led us to being poorly equipped to handle climate change denial, the GOP’s election lies, flat-eartherism and many other things. I would say that there is a non-zero amount of people who know full well that what they are saying is factually incorrect and they do it anyway; to push the Overton window, to push their “side’s” position, to gain social status or wealth, to “own the libs”, or a number of other explanations.

    • How Working ‘The Internet Way’ Helped the Middle East and North Africa Score Social and Economic Benefits

      Regulations in these areas are usually triggered by the need to implement an incomplete reform of the telecom sector, in which the government maintains its ownership to the incumbent provider. In other cases, these policies and regulations are set in an attempt to ensure the privacy and security of users in general, and in time of political disturbances.

      However, the report found that each policy had a direct impact on at least one of the critical properties of the Internet, thereby hindering its resilience and accessibility. Here’s how: [...]

    • Education

      • The Missing Men

        In the late 1970s, men and women attended college in almost equal numbers. Today, women account for 57 percent of enrollment and an even greater share of degrees, especially at the level of master’s and above. The explanations for this growing gender imbalance vary from the academic to the social to the economic. Girls, on average, do better in primary and secondary school. Boys are less likely to seek help when they struggle. And they face more pressure to join the work force.

    • Health/Nutrition

      • Fauci Calls Anti-Vax Cheers at CPAC ‘Horrifying’

        On Sunday, CNN’s Jake Tapper showed Biden’s chief medical adviser a video clip from CPAC where the crowd loudly cheered while a conservative author boasted about the government having trouble reaching a higher percentile of U.S. citizens vaccinated.

        “They were hoping, the government was hoping that they could sort of sucker 90 percent of the population into getting vaccinated. And it isn’t happening,” the panelist said to cheers. Currently, only 48 percent of Americans are fully vaccinated.

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Security

          • Sophos buys Capsule8 to boost adaptive cybersecurity ecosystem

            Sophos, a key player in next-generation cybersecurity, has announced that it has acquired Capsule8, a pioneer in runtime visibility, detection and response for Linux production servers and containers covering on-premise and cloud workloads.

            Founded in 2016, Capsule8 is privately held and headquartered in New York.

            As per the deal, Sophos will be integrating Capsule8 technology into its recently launched Adaptive Cybersecurity Ecosystem (ACE), providing powerful and lightweight Linux server and cloud container security within this open platform.

    • Defence/Aggression

      • An Open Letter to Interior Secretary Haaland: Cliven Bundy’s Chronic Trespass Grazing Must End and How to Do It

        Although it took several years, the federal government solved a similar chronic trespass grazing situation in Arizona when it got Mr. Klump put in jail for contempt and placed a lien on his property.  But the Department of the Interior (DOI) agencies and the Department of Justice (DOJ) have failed to try these proven solutions with Mr. Bundy.  This failure contributed to the dangerous Bunkerville standoff that nearly caused a gun battle with militia members.  This successful standoff by the militia then emboldened them to conduct the Malheur Refuge occupation and later the January 6th insurrection in the U.S. Capitol.  Another potentially dangerous standoff may now be brewing in southern Oregon over Klamath river water.

        When will the DOI and DOJ demonstrate to Mr. Bundy and his militia supporters that there is tangible accountability for their lawless actions and threats of violence?  Will the Biden administration ineptly keep kicking this can down the road, as was done during the eight Obama administration years?

      • Why is OPCW chief Fernando Arias afraid of his own inspectors?
      • They Called Him Star Child

        Rumsfeld (“Rummy to his friends”–though he confessed to Nixon that he never drank with reporters or Secret Service agents) wasn’t all that close to George HW Bush, either. Recall that Rumsfeld launched a presidential bid against Poppy in 1988. Unable to raise much cash, Rumsfeld backed out and promptly endorsed Bush’s arch-rival Bob Dole. To read this article, log in or or Subscribe. In order to read CP+ articles, your web browser must be set to accept cookies.

    • Environment

      • California wildfire grows by 20,000 acres, destroys 20 homes

        The 83,926-acre blaze was 8 percent contained Sunday. Federal fire officials reported some progress in holding the fire on the south and southwestern flanks.

      • What It Means If ‘Ecocide’ Becomes an International Crime

        Ecocide means to destroy the environment, but when considered etymologically, from the Greek and Latin, it signifies to kill one’s home.

      • Energy

      • Wildlife/Nature

        • Conservation Groups Continue To Fight Bull Trout “Extinction” Plan

          The illegal Bull Trout Recovery Plan would allow the federal government to remove bull trout from Endangered Species Act protections as long as only 147 individual populations go extinct out of 611 total populations.  Yes, that’s right.  Even though bull trout had already lost 60% of their range when listed under the Endangered Species Act 20 years ago, the plan is to allow another 147 populations to go extinct.  As the National Park Service noted in public comments against the plan, “Bull trout are a species that has already lost 60% of its historic range. Delisting after losing up to another 10% of that range is not a recovery plan.”  Instead, it is an extinction plan.

          The Endangered Species Act requires that recovery plans contain “objective and measurable criteria,” which, when met, would lead to a lawful delisting rule.  This plan violates this legal requirement because there are no objective criteria, such as target population numbers, trends, or distribution.   Instead, the plan is to delist once “threats” are “effectively managed.”  However, it is simply impossible to determine if management has been effective without looking at the actual population numbers, trends, and distribution.  As stated by the Fish and Wildlife Service project leader from the Columbia River Fisheries Program Office: “Without a benchmark of success, there is . . . certainly no way to determine whether primary threats have been effectively’ managed.”

      • Overpopulation

    • Finance

      • Frito-Lay Workers Are on Strike Against 84-Hour Work Weeks and Puny Pay Raises
      • Invented Inflation: A Big Part of the Real Inflation of the 1970s

        In the 1970s, actually in the late 1960s also, the Consumer Price Index (CPI) had an error in its construction that led it to overstate the rate of inflation relative to the current measure. In some years, especially in the late 1970s, the error was especially large, peaking at 2.6 percentage points in 1979. Here’s the picture for the official CPI used at the time, compared with the Bureau of Labor Statistics CPI-U-RS, which calculates the inflation rate using the current methodology.

        This mattered a lot in the 1970s because, as Smialek and Casselman point out, many wage contracts were directly indexed to the CPI. This means that an overstatement in the measured rate of inflation would show up directly in higher wages. Many rental contracts were also indexed to the CPI. This measurement error undoubtedly contributed to the wage-price spiral of the 1970s. Presumably we don’t have to worry about the same sort of measurement error today, and even if there were such an error, many fewer contracts are now indexed to the CPI. ( I wrote about this issue many years ago.)

      • El Salvador Move Could Strain Bitcoin Blockchain, JPMorgan Says

        Even many proponents of Bitcoin say that, while there’s an argument it’s a good store of value, its utility as a payments mechanism is limited.

        “Bitcoin is the worst payment system ever invented. It’s terrible,” said William Quigley, the co-founder of stablecoin Tether and a pioneer of multiple aspects of the cryptocurrency space, in a recent video interview. “Almost any token is better than Bitcoin as a payment system.”

      • NFTs and Financing the Future of Potential Stars [Ed; Fake economics based on or backed by fake 'property']

        NFTs are getting a lot of press. For sure, NFTs have made a big splash in the art world. I had an interesting conversation with a friend today about financing young athletes through the monetization of their right of publicity since the NCAA (and states) have begun allowing collegiate athletes to profit from their image etc. One interesting issue concerns aspiring professional tennis players. Often those players must make a decision between attempting to finance a shot at a profess

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

    • Misinformation/Disinformation

      • The foreigners in China’s disinformation drive

        In recent years, the “vloggers” have been increasingly presenting themselves as China-lovers, spreading Communist Party disinformation.

        YouTube labels Chinese state media like broadcaster CGTN as government-funded. But there is little policing when it comes to individuals promoting similar narratives.

        Some vloggers are suspected of co-operating with state-owned outlets to spread China’s rhetoric to the world. But it’s far from clear what really motivates them, or how effective this strategy is.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

      • Google boss Sundar Pichai warns of threats to internet freedom

        I spoke to him at Google’s HQ in Silicon Valley, for the first of a series of interviews I am doing for the BBC with global figures.

      • Net neutrality, right to repair, broadband fees: How Biden’s order will affect tech users

        President Joe Biden issued a sweeping executive order on Friday that encourages government agencies to begin enacting reforms across the tech spectrum, including re-enacting net neutrality, enforcing broadband competition, enacting “right-to-repair” laws, and more.

        According to a fact sheet released by the White House, several aspects of the order will directly affect consumers and how they use technology. Below, we’ve summarized the executive order and listed how its contents may affect consumers’ daily lives.

        (The order, when published, will appear on the Federal Register of executive orders.)

    • Digital Restrictions (DRM)

      • Global Streaming Video Revenue to Hit $94B In 2025, PwC Forecasts

        The coronavirus pandemic, its fallout and the reopening of economies in its aftermath are key themes of PricewaterhouseCoopers’ annual “Global Entertainment & Media Outlook,” which found a 3.8 percent decline in global industry revenue to $2 trillion in 2020, “the most significant year-on-year drop in the history” of the report.

        The study looks ahead at the years 2021–2025, forecasting global industry revenue to bounce back 6.5 percent this year “as more territories emerge from lockdown” and a further 6.7 percent in 2022. “From 2020 to 2025, we project a healthy five-year compound annual growth rate of 5.0 percent, taking revenues to $2.6 trillion,” PwC finds.

    • Monopolies

      • Biden’s executive order may spur ‘five-year mega growth’ cycle for India’s IT sector

        US businesses’ growing need for infrastructure modernisation will further exacerbate shortages of workers with IT, data and AI skills, leading them to turn to IT services providers who have large, trained talent bases in India.

        This talent shortage in the United States will also allow IT services players to raise billing rates that can offset anticipated cost increases.

      • Fight Club: why some brands don’t talk about anti-counterfeiting [Ed: Doing so-called 'justice' in the dark, e.g. with threats]

        Counsel at luxury brands and those in the consumer goods and pharmaceutical industries debate whether openness or silence is the best way to combat counterfeiting

      • Patents

        • Fed. Circ: New Vision Gaming v SG Gaming Raises Constitutionality in Opening Brief [Ed: Haters of patent quality still try anything they can to discredit or crush PTAB (for throwing out fake patents in the US)]

          The US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit found that a party did not waive the Patent Trial & Appeal Board’s (Board) constitutionality argument by raising it for the first time in its opening brief because the Court’s decision in Arthrex, Inc. v. Smith & Nephew, Inc. was issued after the party sought rehearing. New Vision Gaming v. SG Gaming, Inc., Case Nos. 20-1399, -1400 (Fed. Cir. May 13, 2021) (Moore, J.) (Newman, J. concurring in part, dissenting in part)

          New Vision appealed two covered-business method (CBM) review final written decisions in which the Board found that all claims of the patents, as well as its proposed substitute claims, were directed to patent ineligible subject matter under 35 U.S.C. § 101. In its opening brief before the Federal Circuit, New Vision requested the Court vacate and remand the Board’s decisions in light of Arthrex. SG Gaming argued New Vision had waived its right to a challenge under Arthrex since it raised it for the first time on an appeal. The Court disagreed, finding that New Vision had not waived its ability to challenge the Board’s decision under Arthrex since Arthrex was issued after the Board’s final written decisions and after New Vision sought Board rehearing. The Court vacated the Board’s final written decisions in the CBMs and remanded for further proceedings consistent with Arthrex without reaching the merits or any other issues.

        • Russia Compulsory License [Ed: Compulsory License is a lipstick om patents that ought not exist in the first place; the patent maximalists just look for a phony compromise or middle ground wherein controversial and harmful patents are made to seem tolerable]

          The legal basis for compulsory licensing in Russia flows from Articles 1360 and 1362 of the Civil Code of the Russian Federation (Civil Code). Article 1360 of the Civil Code allows the Russian Government to grant permission to the use of a patented invention in the interest of defense and national security. Such permission requires notifying the patentholder and paying him an adequate compensation.

        • ‘It’s embarrassing’: China’s tightening grip on the intellectual property landscape in Canada [Ed: Patents aren't good for nations where they're granted but for a bunch of parasitic law firms that actively undermine those nations' collective interest]

          A Chinese tech giant filed more patents in Canada last year than any other company, evidence of what some observers say is a failure by Canada to secure the critical intellectual property rights needed to build next-generation technologies.

        • Applied Information Granted Key Patent Covering Dual-Mode Connected Vehicle Communications and Control of Traffic Signals [Ed: Patents on urveillance (on steroids) inside cars]

          Applied Information, Inc., the leading provider of intelligent transportation infrastructure technology, announced today that the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has granted the company a patent covering its technology that uses both cellular network and direct radio communication to control traffic signals.

        • Apple Trial Spotlights U.K. Ban Potential in Global Patent Fights

          Apple Inc. will ask a London court this month to reject arguments that the iPhone maker is an “unwilling” patent licensee, during a high-stakes trial that could raise the U.K’s growing profile in global patent fights.

          Apple already has been found to infringe two Optis Cellular Technology LLC patents essential to 3G and 4G communications standards. The court has been asked to determine a licensing rate that is fair, reasonable, and non-discriminatory, or FRAND.

          Apple doesn’t want to commit to taking a license before the rate is determined, however. A trial set to begin July 19 focuses on whether that makes Apple an “unwilling licensee,” a label that can open the door to a possible sales ban in the U.K.

        • The Justiciability of Cancelled Patents [Ed: Patents that should never have been granted in the first place, but the system tends to reward overgranting, financially, rather than strive to improve validity, quality etc.]

          The recent expansion of the Patent Office’s power to invalidate issued patents raises a coordination problem when there is also concurrent litigation, particularly where the federal courts have already upheld the patent’s validity. The Federal Circuit has concluded that Patent Office cancellation extinguishes litigation pending at any stage and requires vacating prior decisions in the case. This rule is widely criticized on doctrinal, policy, and separation of powers grounds. Yet, the Federal Circuit has reached (almost) the right outcome, except for the wrong reasons. Both the Federal Circuit and its critics overlook that the Federal Circuit’s rule reflects a straight-forward application of the justiciability limits on the power of the federal courts. Patent cancellation eliminates the exclusive rights that form the basis for the plaintiff’s suit, mooting the infringement case no matter how belated in the litigation. Courts typically vacate prior judgments and decisions when a pending case becomes moot, exactly as the Federal Circuit requires. Properly rooting the effects of Patent Office cancellation in mootness addresses critics’ doctrinal and policy concerns. It also demonstrates that critics’ separation of powers concerns are exactly backwards. The Federal Circuit’s rule is not a threat to the constitutional structure or the role of federal courts but rather a necessary result of Article III’s limits on federal judicial power. Courts and Congress each have potential ways to mitigate policy concerns from allowing Patent Office cancellation to trump litigation, while respecting mootness, but these ways introduce their own problems. Courts may have some discretion to decline to vacate prior judgments but doing so would have limited impact and could be an unwarranted departure from generally applicable procedural rules. Congress could limit the retroactive effect of patent cancellation, but this would be historically novel and raise its own policy concerns.

        • The Predictive Power of Patents [Ed: This is mystical and mythical nonsense that has little or nothing to do with the original purpose of patent law]

          This article explains that domestic patenting activity may foreshadow a country’s level of regulation of path-breaking technologies. The article considers whether different governments will act with a light or a heavy regulatory hand when encountering a new disruptive technology. The article hypothesizes that part of the answer to this important regulatory, economic, and geopolitical question may lie in an unexpected place: the world’s patent offices. Countries with early and significant patent activity in an emerging technology are more likely to view themselves as having a stake in the technology and therefore will be less inclined to subject the technology to extensive health, safety and environmental regulation that would constrain it. The article introduces the term “patent footprint” to describe a country’s degree of patenting activity in a new technology, and the article posits that a country’s patent footprint may provide an early clue to its willingness or reluctance to strenuously regulate the new technology. Even more so, lack of geographic diversity in patent footprints may help predict whether an emerging technology will face extensive international regulation. Patent footprints provide a useful tool to policymakers, businesses, investors, and NGOs considering the health, safety, and environmental regulation of a disruptive technology. The predictive power of patent footprints adds to the literature on the broader function of patents in society.

        • USPTO launches patent eligibility study

          The USPTO plans to launch a patent eligibility jurisprudence study, it was revealed yesterday, July 8.

          The announcement came in response to a letter sent by a bipartisan group of senators to acting director Drew Hirshfeld in March asking the office to “publish a request for information on the current state of patent eligibility jurisprudence in the US and evaluate the responses”.

          A federal register notice (FRN) is now scheduled to be published today, July 9, requesting answers and input from stakeholders to 13 questions and topics to assist in that effort, according to a publicly posted draft of the FRN.


          All eyes on EPO following re-scheduled VICO hearing

          The EPO’s Enlarged Board of Appeal has finally considered the legality of mandatory video conferences for oral proceedings – and practitioners will now keenly await its decision.

          The Enlarged Board of Appeal (EBoA) hearing in G1/21 was held on Friday, July 2.

          It was initially scheduled to start on May 28 but was delayed that same day after a request from the opponent, who claimed it had not been given enough time to consider submissions by EPO president António Campinos.

          During last week’s hearing, it was noted that before oral proceedings by VICO became mandatory, only 300 matters using this method were held. It was added that one party in a dispute was able to stall proceedings for all others simply by declining a VICO hearing.

          At the end of last year, sources told Managing IP that some patentees deliberately declined virtual proceedings in order to stall potential invalidation of their patents.

          In January this year, the need for both parties to consent to VICO was removed. Since then, 3,000 oral proceedings have taken place by VICO, the EBoA heard.

          The G1/21 hearing has been dogged with controversy. The composition of the EBoA panel was changed after the EBoA accepted that there was a justified fear of bias.

          Those concerns were raised because Boards of Appeal president Carl Josefsson, who was involved in the drafting of the article that allowed for VICO hearings, was due to sit on the panel hearing the dispute.

          Josefsson was replaced by EBoA member Fritz Blumer.

          A written decision is expected, but no timeline has been provided yet.

          Davis replaces Yokoyama as Microsoft head of IP

          Burton Davis will oversee intellectual property at Microsoft, it was announced this week after current IP head Jennifer Yokoyama revealed she was stepping down.

          Yokoyama said in a LinkedIn post on Saturday, July 3, that she was moving to a new role in the company’s cloud and artificial intelligence department.

          “As we head into the new fiscal year at Microsoft, I’m looking forward to expanding my role as the new corporate vice president and deputy general counsel of cloud and AI as part of a new customer experience and policy team,” she wrote.

        • Do patents kill innovation? The US patent office is asking.

          The US Patent Office is looking at the impact of patents on areas such as quantum computing, AI and networking

          The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is looking at the impact of patents on innovation and investment in technology and calling for industry views.

          The study particularly wants to find examples of where a patent has been denied in the US but accepted in other jurisdictions, which will be a key area for European electronics companies.

          The US Supreme Court’s 2016 decisions in Mayo and Alice and subsequent Federal Circuit decisions applying the Supreme Court’s legal framework have highlighted the impact of patents on areas such as quantum computing, artificial intelligence, precision medicine, diagnostic methods, software and networking

          The USPTO will use the responses to prepare a report for US Senators Thom Tillis, Mazie Hirono, Tom Cotton, and Christopher Coons on how current jurisprudence may have affected U.S. investment and innovation…

        • How a surge of PGRs for biologics could challenge PTAB counsel [Ed: A false sense of crisis amid overgranting of fake patents and PTAB handling the more problematic among them (actively asserted)]

          In-house and private practice counsel set out their arguments for why recent data may or may not indicate a rise in PGRs for biologics

        • Optis v Apple: Meade J considers estoppel due to late IPR declarations for SEPs

          On 25 June 2021 Meade J handed down his decision in the second of a series of trials listed as part of the Optis v Apple UK action ([2021] EWHC 1739 (Pat); a link the judgment is here). This decision concerned the validity and infringement of EP (UK) 2 229 744. This patent had previously been held valid and infringed/essential by Birss J in the context of the Unwired Planet v Huawei dispute (a copy of Birss J’s decision is here). In this case, Apple conceded infringement/essentiality but argued the patent was invalid over two pieces of prior art and also raised a defence of proprietary estoppel. Whilst a number of the patent arguments are interesting – particularly the question of anticipation by equivalence which the judge rejected as a matter of law and fact – this author was especially drawn to the judge’s in-depth analysis and dismissal of Apple’s proprietary estoppel defence. The decision no-doubt brings a sigh of relief to SEP holders as it appears to close the door in the UK on estoppel arguments of this nature, sometimes categorised as a flavour of ‘patent ambush’ argument, at least in the context of the ETSI telecommunication standards.

        • PLUSS, Apollo LogiSolutions set up facility in HYD for temp-control vaccine boxes

          PLUSS has partnered with pharmaceutical companies across India for transporting their products using Celsure boxes and also exports Celsure boxes and its ‘phase change materials’ to pharma packaging suppliers in Europe and the USA. PLUSS has received a patent for the Celsure box from the United States Patent and Trademark Office and the European Patent Office in Germany and has applied for a patent in India, Singapore and Brazil.

        • Counsel show no neutrality over proposed Swiss patent reform [Ed: What sort of greedy nutcases would oppose proper patent examination and restrictions on monopolies? ]

          Sources from Nestlé, Novartis and Siemens clash over proposals to introduce full examination to the Swiss patent regime

        • Fed. Circ. Told Acting USPTO Chief Can’t Implement Arthrex

          Two patent owners [sic] told the Federal Circuit on Wednesday that there were “significant questions” about the legality of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s plan for its temporary leader to review patent decisions under the U.S. Supreme Court’s Arthrex ruling, since he isn’t a presidential appointee.

        • CVC Substantive Preliminary Motion No. 3 To Add Claims in ToolGen Patent [Ed: Patent profiteers and other fanatics of monopolies won't rest until life itself becomes a monopoly through patents]

          On May 20th, Junior Party the University of California, Berkeley; the University of Vienna; and Emmanuelle Charpentier (collectively, “CVC”) filed its Substantive Preliminary Motion No. 3 in Interference No. 106,127 (which names ToolGen as Senior Party), asking the Patent Trial and Appeal Board to add claims in ToolGen’s U.S. Patent No. 10,851,380* to this interference, pursuant to 37 C.F.R. §§ 41.121(a)(1)(i) and 41.208(a)(2) and Standing Order ¶ 208.3.2.

        • CVC Files Responsive Preliminary Motion No. 1 Contingent on Grant of ToolGen Substantive Preliminary Motion No. 2

          On June 11th, Junior Party the University of California, Berkeley; the University of Vienna; and Emmanuelle Charpentier (collectively, “CVC”) filed its Responsive Preliminary Motion No. 2 in Interference No. 106,127 to be accorded benefit of priority to U.S. provisional application No. 13/842,859, filed March 15, 2013, pursuant to 37 C.F.R. §§ 41.121(a)(2) and 41.208(a)(3) and Standing Order ¶ 208.4.1. CVC filed this motion contingent on the Board granting Senior Party ToolGen’s Substantive Preliminary Motion No. 2 to deny CVC priority benefit to U.S. provisional application No. 16/757,640, filed January 28, 2013 (“P3″).

        • Huawei patents a smartphone with under-display selfie camera

          ZTE is currently the only company that is commercially selling a smartphone with а selfie camera hidden under the display and it’s about to release its second generation any moment now. We expect the Samsung Galaxy Fold3 to also adopt the tech, Oppo has also been working on a solution, and now Huawei is on its way to join them after patenting a smartphone with a UPC.

        • Lawyers: SMEs may suffer in Australia patent reform [Ed: This site and these lawyers do not speak for SMEs but against SMEs; they don't represent any picture of reality]

          In-house and private practice lawyers say changes to Australia’s patent law, including the removal of a secondary patent system, could unfairly affect SMEs

        • Supreme Court confirms proper boundaries to tort of causing loss by unlawful means

          The Supreme Court has upheld a decision striking out a claim against a pharmaceutical company for causing loss to the NHS by unlawful means. The alleged unlawful means consisted in obtaining and enforcing a patent for a blood pressure drug through fraudulent misrepresentations to the European Patent Office (“EPO”) and the English court (allegations which were denied). This conduct, it was alleged, delayed the entry onto the market of generic versions of the drug, which meant that the NHS had to pay higher prices for the drug: Secretary of State for Health v Servier Laboratories Ltd [2021] UKSC 24.

        • Use-limited product claims in Europe

          A use-limited product claim is a claim format often used in Europe as an alternative to method of treatment claims. However, it is a claim format in its own right, and an understanding of its uses and limitations may be useful when drafting patent applications which are destined to be prosecuted before the European Patent Office (EPO).

          Use-limited product claims allow a known compound to be protected for a first medical use (where its use as a medicament was previously unknown), or for a further medical use (where the compound was previously known as a medicament). They are essentially a product claim in which the product is limited by its use, and the basic formats for drafting such claims are provided below:

        • En Banc: When Employees Leave with a Half-Baked Invention

          I have been following the patent ownership lawsuit of Bio-Rad Laboratories, Inc. v. International Trade Commission and 10X Genomics. The case is now pending on a petition for en banc rehearing before the Federal Circuit.

          Several former Bio-Rad employees left to form 10X Genomics. While at Bio-Rad, the individuals began development of a number of ideas but did not complete conception or reduction-to-practice. Some months later, after leaving and forming 10X, they completed the inventions and filed patent applications. Bio-Rad now argues that it has partial ownership rights to the inventions based upon the inventor’s contributions while employees.

          In the appeal, the Federal Circuit sided with 10X, holding that the terms of the employment agreement were limited to Intellectual Property, and pre-conception ideas were not enough.

        • Sweden: IP Litigation & Enforcement Guide

          In Sweden, infringement and invalidity of a patent are officially handled in separate cases and consequently brought in separate proceedings, but it is the same court that will deal with both infringement and invalidity. Validity and infringement can be decided in the same proceedings, but it can also, at the request of any of the parties, be decided separately (section 61, The Swedish Patent Act). Such separate decisions are however not independent of each other, and it is still the same judges that will deal with both issues, taking into account facts from both proceedings.

        • Chemists are in the driving seat of electric vehicle development [Ed: The EPO’s greenwashing of monopolies carries on months later]

          The pace of innovation is increasing in the scramble to meet the required timescale for the move to EVs. A recent joint study by the European Patent Office and the International Energy Agency found that between 2005 and 2018 patenting activity in batteries and electricity storage technology grew at an average annual rate of 14% worldwide, four times faster than the average for all technologies, and that the rise in innovation was chiefly driven by developments in Li-ion batteries. Although the study found that Asia has a strong lead, concerted efforts are now being made in Europe and the US to catch up.

        • Breaking News from Karlsruhe: Progress on the Unified Patent Court (UPC) [Ed: Loaded and false statement there; it's not down to Germany and due to brexit among other factors the project is legally untenable]

          These decisions clear the path for the ratification procedure in Germany. It is likely that Germany will sign the UPC Agreement within this year. This means the UPC could finally be ready to operate as early as Spring 2022!

        • Microsoft gets new IP head following Yokoyama move [Ed: New patent extortion person at Microsoft (so they can bribe people to keep quiet while they blackmail their rivals)]

          A low-key change at the top of the Microsoft IP function is a sign of how things have changed at the company over recent years

        • UPC gets German green light; New Microsoft IP head; Nokia hits Oppo with patent suits; First VVC pool launched; IP Hall of Fame inductees announced; plus much more

          A low-key change at the top of the Microsoft IP function is a sign of how things have changed at the company over recent years.

        • FOSS Patents: Bluetooth-related patent lawsuit calls into question Texas Instruments’ prior decision not to buy a portfolio containing the patent-in-suit

          Compared to cellular and WiFi patents, litigation over Bluetooth devices is relatively rare. But that’s just one of two aspects that make Texas LFP v. Texas Instruments (a recently-filed patent infringement action in the Eastern District of Texas) stand out.

          On LinkedIn, Tangible IP’s Louis Carbeonneau–a patent broker–provided some interesting background on the case. His firm had “offered [a portfolio containing the patent-in-suit] to several chip companies, including all the alleged infringers, to no avail.” As a result, the patent holder “turned to a well respected patent litigation firm that liked the portfolio and are now suing one of the alleged infringers”: TI.

        • Software Patents

          • Skilled in the Art: Some Patents and IPRs Follow a Familiar Script

            No need to reinvent the wheel for some patent owners and IPR petitioners.

          • What is Your Preferred Method for Attacking Functional Claims?
            [Ed: Software patents by any other name of buzzword]

            VoIP-Pal sued Apple for infringing its U.S. Patent Nos. 9,537,762; 9,813,330; 9,826,002; and 9,948,549. Apple filed four petitions for for inter partes review, but all four were denied by the PTAB. Judge Koh then dismissed the infringement case in Apple’s favor–finding that all asserted claims were directed to ineligible subject matter. On appeal, the Federal Circuit affirmed without opinion (R.36). Now, VoIP-Pal has petitioned for writ of certiorari. The case is now part of a trio of eligibility cases pending before the Court. See American Axle & Manufacturing, Inc. v. Neapco Holdings LLC, No. 20-891; iLife Technologies, Inc. v. Nintendo of America, Inc., No. 20-1760.

          • Zighra Expands its Pioneering Patent Platform Highlighting Continued Leadership in Mobile Behavioral Biometrics

            Today Zighra, the leading solution for continuous behavioral authentication, expanded the company’s pioneering technical leadership. The United States Patent and Trademark office issued today: System and method for behavioural biometric authentication using program modelling (U.S. Patent No. 11,057,413), enabling a process to eliminate passwords and continuously authenticate users on multiple applications and cloud services. The company now has 16 issued and pending patents across four patent families.

      • Trademarks

        • How in-house clear up consumer confusion matters

          Sources at Starbucks, Coty and Ziff Davis reveal how using similar criteria to the courts can help them conduct challenging consumer confusion analysis

        • ‘Football’s coming home’: IP rights, Germans and THAT final

          Over the past few weeks, the song ‘Football’s Coming Home’ has been shouted at various levels of volume and inebriation all over England.

          For our readers living under a rock or in the US, the national team managed to end a 55-year wait for a major final: the Three Lions will play Italy in the final of the European Championship 2020 (which was delayed by a year) on Sunday night and attempt to bring the trophy back to the home of football (soccer, for our American readers).

        • No One is Confusing Yeezy and Walmart’s “Lookalike” Logos, Yeezy Argues in Response to Retailer’s Opposition

          Days after Kanye West and Yeezy LLC filed suit against Walmart and a number of unnamed sellers on the retail giant’s marketplace platform over the sale of copycat footwear, Yeezy has responded to the already-existing trademark scuffle that Walmart waged against it this spring. On the heels of Yeezy filing a trademark application for registration for a stylized sun rays graphic, which the company says that it intends to use on everything from clothing and retail store services, and musical sound recordings and streaming to hotel services and the construction of “non-metal modular homes,” among other things, Walmart initiated an opposition proceeding in an attempt to block the registration of the Yeezy logo on the basis that it is confusingly similar to a trademark that is already using.

      • Copyrights

        • Around the IP Blogs

          SpicyIP featured a post on the copyright ownership in State Board Textbooks. The post looks into how different copyright policies in different states within India impede access to knowledge and calls for consistency among such copyright policies across State Boards.

        • Copyright Ownership in State Board Textbooks: Impediments to Accessibility

          Although education has the potential to be a significant leveller of inequalities, online education because of the pandemic, has brought into stark relief the digital divide and widening socio-economic inequalities in India. Of late, there have been multiple reported cases of suicides by students (see here and here) on account of lack of access to the means of education. Further, only around a quarter of Indian families have access to the internet, according to estimates. This percentage reduces to 15% in rural homes. As usual, the marginalised, rural, and destitute communities have been hit the hardest.

          There should therefore be a renewed emphasis on the need to make education, online or offline, more inclusive. Equitable access to learning materials and textbooks for education, both online and offline, constitutes a basic requirement for the realisation of this goal. However, since a long time access to textbooks in India, has been riddled with distribution problems, and the impact of this differential access has only been exacerbated during the pandemic. In this post, I look at the question of the government’s copyright ownership in State Board textbooks, and its implications on access to knowledge and education.

        • The Court of Milan on the impact of Cofemel on the copyright protection of industrial designs in Italy. A new CJEU referral on the horizon?

          A preliminary disclaimer: in my view, the Cofemel decision is far from straightforward. The fact is, however, that the CJEU has been pretty clear-cut in stating that under EU law the existence of a “work” – as defined in the Court’s settled case law (see for reference Cofemel, at 29-34) – is the only requirement for copyright protection, works of industrial design included. And this principle, implicitly repeated in Brompton, implies that Member States would not be allowed to make the protection of such works conditional upon fulfilment of further requirements, in spite of Article 17 Design Directive and Article 96 Design Regulation.

          Italy is (was?) one of the countries where these further requirements must (had to?) be met. Under Article 2.10 of Italian Copyright Law, in order to be protected, works of industrial design must have inherent “creative character and artistic value”. It is no surprise, then, that Italian scholars have been particularly prolific in speculating on the possible assassination of “artistic value” by the CJEU.

        • Sunday Surprises

          Do YouTube and cyberlocker Uploaded directly perform copyright-restricted acts? And, following from this: what is the relationship between the InfoSoc right of communication to the public and Article 17 of the DSM Directive? At what conditions is the hosting safe harbour available? And what about intermediary injunctions?

        • Man Sentenced to 12 Months Prison For Copyright Infringement & Tax Evasion

          A man who operated several pirate sites that allowed people to download movies and TV shows has been sentenced in the United States. Talon White, who previously admitted to copyright infringement and tax evasion offenses, was handed 12 months in prison and ordered to pay $4.3 million in restitution to the MPAA and IRS.

        • Toomics Reports Its Own Website for Copyright Infringements

          Popular webtoon subscription service Toomics is quite active on the anti-piracy front. Unfortunately, the Korean company is not very accurate as its takedown notices target perfectly legal content on Facebook, Amazon, Pinterest and Netflix. Even more bizarrely, Toomics has repeatedly asked Google to remove ‘infringing’ URLs on its own website.

IRC Proceedings: Sunday, July 11, 2021

Posted in IRC Logs at 2:44 am by Needs Sunlight

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