Links 18/11/2021: Schleswig-Holstein (German State) Moving to GNU/Linux, pgAdmin 4 Version 6.2 is Out

Posted in News Roundup at 6:18 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • GNU/Linux Surveillance in the ‘Clown’

      • AWS now lets you stream Linux apps

        Amazon’s cloud computing division, Amazon Web Services (AWS) has added support for streaming Linux apps to its AppStream service, which could previously only stream Windows apps.

        The AppStream service enables users to stream individual graphical apps, and even entire desktops to a remote PC using either a web browser or through the Windows client.

        “With this launch, you can now stream Linux applications and desktops to your users, and greatly lower the total streaming cost by migrating Matlab, Eclipse, Firefox, PuTTY, and other similar applications from Windows to Linux on Amazon AppStream 2.0,” shared AWS.

      • Citrix Workspace for Linux: a tool for secure and agile remote work [Ed: This seems like Citrix marketing SPAM disguised as 'review' or 'article']
    • Server

    • Audiocasts/Shows

    • Kernel Space

      • Linux 5.14.20
        I'm announcing the release of the 5.14.20 kernel.
        All users of the 5.14 kernel series must upgrade.
        The updated 5.14.y git tree can be found at:
        	git://git.kernel.org/pub/scm/linux/kernel/git/stable/linux-stable.git linux-5.14.y
        and can be browsed at the normal kernel.org git web browser:
        greg k-h
      • Linux 5.10.80
      • Linux 5.17 To Bring DRM Privacy-Screen Support, Intel VESA PWM Backlight Handling – Phoronix

        The Linux 5.16 merge window now past, an initial batch of changes from drm-misc-next has been sent in to DRM-Next for queuing until the Linux 5.17 cycle kicks off around the start of the new year.

      • Graphics Stack

        • Mesa 21.3 drivers out, plus NVIDIA 470.62.12 Vulkan Beta for Linux

          Two sets of driver releases are now available. First we have the open source Mesa 21.3 release and we also secondly have the NVIDIA Vulkan Beta 470.62.12 also out now.

          For the Mesa 21.3 release it pulls in a number of new features and performance improvements.

        • Experimental Zink On NVIDIA’s Vulkan Driver Capable Of Outperforming OpenGL Driver – Phoronix

          The latest Zink development code paired with the forthcoming “Copper” work is yielding an OpenGL-on-Vulkan implementation that when running on NVIDIA’s proprietary Vulkan driver is even able to outperform NVIDIA’s own proprietary OpenGL driver for at least one notable Linux game.

          Following the recent achievements around Zink / Copper and getting Wayland’s Weston running atop the experimental code, he shared that with NVIDIA’s proprietary driver stack this is a big improvement.

        • Nouveau Lights Up The NVIDIA RTX 3060 GPU Open-Source Support – Phoronix

          The open-source Nouveau driver’s support for the GeForce RTX 30 “Ampere” series remains very limited — most notably, without any 3D acceleration support — but now the GA106 GPU can light up for the GeForce RTX 3060.

          Since earlier this year has been the very basic Nouveau driver support for Ampere but without 3D acceleration so basically amounts to a kernel mode-setting driver to at least (hopefully) getting the display working nicely. NVIDIA has not yet published the Ampere signed microcode/firmware files necessary for bringing up the engines and get accelerated 3D working.

          Then again, even with the GeForce GTX 900 Maxw

        • Experimental FFmpeg Code For Vulkan Acceleration – Phoronix

          Prominent FFmpeg developer Cyanreg has begun working on an experimental Vulkan hardware acceleration video decoder for FFmpeg.

          Cyanreg is working on this FFmpeg vulkan_decode GitHub branch where so far H.264 Vulkan-based video decode is wired up. The work-in-progress code is making use of the provisional Vulkan Video extensions and so aside from this FFmpeg code still being a work-in-progress, it’s unlikely to be merged until the finalized Vulkan Video extensions come out in the months ahead.

        • The Nouveau driver seems to work

          I’ve had an nvidia graphics card for the past 8 years (and nvidia gtx770), I usually alternate between the nvidia proprietary driver and the nouveau open-source driver, i.e. there is a problem in one, I try the other. But I used the proprietary driver more than the nouveau driver, the latter usually performed worse than it’s binary-blob-corporate-jailed driver.

          Recently I found that the latest nvidia proprietary driver will finally get GBM support instead of the EGLStream that it currently has (AFAIK, all the other gfx drivers in Linux use GBM, except for nvidia), but… in typical nvidia fashion, they also decided to drop support for older cards, and my card falls into that group, so again, thank you nvidia! again!

          That irked me, so I decided to try using the nouveau driver again; it looks like one of the reasons it always did badly in my current distro is that I didn’t have the libdrm_nouveau2 package installed (it’s likely that it was installed by default and then I removed it). Once I installed that it seemed to work much better (glxinfo is actually a very useful tool).

        • Mike Blumenkrantz: NV Envy

          In an earlier post I talked about Copper and what it could do on the way to a zink future.

          What I didn’t talk about was WSI, or the fact that I’ve already fully implemented it in the course of bashing Copper into a functional state.

        • Linux & Mesa Driver Comparison For Intel Core i5 12600K / UHD Graphics 770 – Phoronix

          Earlier this month I provided benchmarks showing the Intel UHD Graphics 770 with Alder Lake compared to other CPUs/APUs under Linux. Those tests were done with the latest open-source Intel Linux graphics driver code at the time, but for those running Alder Lake and wondering if it’s worthwhile moving from the stable versions to more bleeding-edge components, this article is for you.

        • The Zink driver for OpenGL over Vulkan shows good performance on NVIDIA | GamingOnLinux

          Recently developer Mike Blumenkrantz wrote an interesting post in regards to a future upgrade to Zink, the driver that provides an OpenGL implementation on top of Vulkan and the performance with it is looking impressive.

          The new upgrade coming is called Copper. To keep it simple enough for most readers, it will allow Zink to avoid existing problems with the way the driver works and get rendering done more directly. The result of it has been shown off today, where Blumenkrantz tested the newer work with the NVIDIA 495.44 driver on an RTX 2070 and benchmarking Feral Interactive’s port of Tomb Raider.

    • Applications

      • 4 Best Free and Open Source Drum Machines

        A drum machine is an electronic musical instrument that creates percussion sounds, drum beats, and patterns.

        Drum machines may imitate drum kits or other percussion instruments, or produce unique sounds, such as synthesized electronic tones. A drum machine often has pre-programmed beats and patterns for popular genres and styles, such as pop music, rock music, and dance music. Most modern drum machines made in the 2010s and 2020s also allow users to program their own rhythms and beats.

        Drum machines may create sounds using analog synthesis or play prerecorded samples.

        Here’s our recommended drum machine software captured in one of our legendary rating charts. We only feature free and open source goodness.

      • This App Tells When the Next Rocket will Launch in Linux Desktop / Phone | UbuntuHandbook

        For spaceflight enthusiasts, there’s now a GTK4 app for Linux Desktop and Phone (e.g., PinePhone, Librem 5) to keep track of upcoming rocket launches.

        It’s “Space Launch”, an open-source app gets data of the launches from spacelaunchnow.me. The app displays the next upcoming launches with information about the company and/or manufacturer, such as Rocket Lab and SpaceX. The location, date and time, and count down for the rocket launches.

      • Warning: Do not upgrade to NordVPN 3.12.1 on GNU/Linux.

        After the “no US servers will connect” problem on 3.12.0, I found that if you log into it via nordaccount (OAuth) then it will let you connect to US servers again.

        Today, their apt repo offered 3.12.1, and under that version, no US servers are available no matter how you log in. It goes back to logging you into another country and limiting you to that country’s servers for an entire day, and then picking another country, apparently, like 3.12 does if you use username/password.

      • APT 2.3.12 package manager released, will no longer let you break everything

        After the issues that happened with Linus from Linus Tech Tips breaking Pop!_OS during the switch to Linux challenge, the APT package manager has been upgraded to prevent future issues happening.

        We covered the problem in our previous article, where System76 were going to apply their own fix to prevent a dialogue appearing that allowed users to end up removing essential packages. At the same time, System76 were also talking with the APT team to get an official fix and one has now been created and released with APT 2.3.12.

        The issue shouldn’t have come up often, and was the result of the Steam package breaking, with APT in terminal mentioning lots of different things that could easily confuse users. To continue you needed to enter “Yes, do as I say!” to progress, which you should probably never do since the warning was there for a reason – essential packages being removed.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • How to Format Storage Drives Using the Linux Terminal

        A storage device is an integral part of your computer hardware and computing in general. Used for storing processed data, storage devices come in many different forms. Some of the most common ones include external or internal hard drives, flash disks, CDs, etc.

        This guide will show you how to format a storage device right from the Linux terminal.

      • How to install PHPStorm on Ubuntu 21.04 – NextGenTips

        In this tutorial guide I will take you through the installation of PHPStorm on Ubuntu 21.04.

        PHPStorm is a proprietary, cross-platform IDE for PHP. It provides an editor for PHP, Javascript and HTML with on-the-fly code analysis, error prevention and automated refactoring for PHP and Javascript code.

      • Install Nagios NRPE Agents on Debian 11/Debian 10 – kifarunix.com

        This guide describes how to easily install Nagios NRPE agents on Debian 11/Debian 10. If you want to monitor your Debian hosts using Nagios server, then you need to have the NRPE agents installed on these hosts. Nagios Remote Plugin Executor (NRPE) allows you to remotely execute Nagios plugins on other Linux/Unix machines to query machine metrics such as disk usage, CPU load, etc.

      • Mount a remote folder with sshfs – Tips and Tricks

        Sometimes you just need to copy some files between two computers, you can do that with scp, sftp or rsync. But some of those times you also need to navigate the remote folders and those three options are too cumbersome. A quick&dirty solution is to mount a remote folder with sshfs.

        You could export that folder with NFS, Samba or some other network filesystem, but you’ll need to deal with config files, firewalls,… But you surely have already an ssh access to your remote system. If you don’t, you shouldn’t been here.. I think xD

      • I got a ton of Flatpak platform updates today. That went well.

        Today, nearly every platform Flatpak that my GNOME/GTK applications depend on and some that my KDE and Qt applications depend on got updated.

        Since Flatpak can download only the files the programs need, and then only the files in the Flatpaks that have changed, you can actually bring in many upgrades so fast that it’s like engaging the hyperdrive.

        So, not only do I have fairly new applications to run without disturbing my underlying Debian system, they’re easy to maintain.

        Fedora used to use patch updates in RPMs and then they turned it off reckoning that everyone has fast and unmetered Internet access anyway.

      • How to install Garuda Linux

        Garuda Linux is a rolling operating system based on Arch Linux. It uses Arch packages and Arch technologies like Pacman. However, unlike Arch Linux, users do not need to build it from scratch to install it, as it comes with a graphical installer.

        Garuda offers a wide variety of Linux desktops, but it primarily focuses on the KDE Plasma desktop. If you love Arch and want a solid KDE experience, follow this guide to learn how to install Garuda Linux.

        Note: to install Garuda Linux, you must have a computer with at least 1 GB of RAM and a USB flash drive with at least 1 GB of storage space.

      • How to install Endeavour OS

        Endeavour OS is a rolling Linux operating system based upon Arch Linux. The project is a successor to Antergos, and it aims to provide an easy way to set up Arch Linux with a slick graphical UI. Here’s how you can get Endeavour OS working on your computer.

        Note: to install Endeavour OS, you must have a computer with at least 1 GB of RAM and a USB flash drive with at least 1 GB of storage space.

      • How To Set Charge Thresholds For Some Huawei MateBooks, LG Gram, Lenovo, Samsung Or ASUS Laptops On Linux With TLP – Linux Uprising Blog

        TLP is a command line advanced Linux power management tool that helps save laptop battery power. It’s designed to install and forget about it, TLP taking care of everything automatically. TLP is highly configurable though, so you can tweak it to suit your specific needs, either to manual editing of its configuration file (/etc/tlp.conf), or by using TLPUI, a third-party GUI for TLP.

        With version 1.4, TLP has added support for setting start and/or stop charge battery thresholds for some laptops: ASUS, Huawei MateBooks, LG Gram, Lenovo (now for non-Thinkpads too; Thinkpads have been supported for a while) and Samsung. This article explains how to use this TLP feature to set start and/or stop thresholds in case you own a supported laptop.

      • Reset Root Password In Fedora 35 – OSTechNix

        Have you forgotten the root password in Fedora? Or do you want to change the root user password in your Fedora system? No problem! This brief guide walks you through the steps to change or reset root password in Fedora operating systems.

        Step 1 – Switch on your Fedora system and press ESC key until you see the GRUB boot menu. Once the GRUB menu is appeared, choose the Kernel you want to boot and hit e to edit the selected boot entry.

      • How to Upgrade CentOS 7 to CentOS 8 Linux

        In this article, you will learn how to upgrade CentOS 7 to CentOS 8.5 release. The steps described herein do not depict the official upgrade and this should not be applied to a production server yet.

      • How to Migrate from CentOS 8 to AlmaLinux 8.5

        In our earlier guide, we walked you through the installation of AlmaLinux. If you have CentOS 8 installed, an automated migration script is available to help you migrate seamlessly to the latest version of AlmaLinux 8.5 without uninstalling and performing a fresh installation.

        There is also a similar script from Oracle Linux, that helps you to migrate from CentOS to Oracle Linux.

      • How to Install MariaDB 10.7 on Debian 11 Bullseye – LinuxCapable

        MariaDB is one of the most popular open-source databases next to its originator MySQL. The original creators of MySQL developed MariaDB in response to fears that MySQL would suddenly become a paid service due to Oracle acquiring it in 2010. With its history of doing similar tactics, the developers behind MariaDB have promised to keep it open source and free from such fears as what has happened to MySQL.

        MariaDB has become just as popular as MySQL with developers, with features such as advanced clustering with Galera Cluster 4, faster cache/indexes, storage engines, and features/extensions that you won’t find in MySQL.

        In the following tutorial, you will learn how to install MariaDB 10.7 on Debian 11 Bullseye.

      • Automating Baremetal Node Creation for Ironic | Adam Young’s Web Log

        Sometime your shell scripts get out of control. Sometimes you are proud of them. Sometimes….both.

        I need to be able to re-add a bunch of nodes to an OpenStack cluster on a regular basis. Yes, I could do this with Ansible, but, well, Ansible is great for doing something via SSH, and this just needs to be done here and now. So shell is fine.

        This started as a one liner, and got a bit bigger.

        This is a utility script that I keep modifying as I need new things from it. I have not cleaned it up or anything, but I find it works OK as is and is not too big that I lose sight of what it is doing.

      • A Horrible Conversion from Binary to Decimal in Assembly | Adam Young’s Web Log

        This is not my finest code. It is the worst case of “just make it work” I’ve produced all week.

        But it runs.

        What does it do? It takes the first binary number in an array, and converts it to decimal. It assumes that the number is no more than 3 digits long.

        It divides that number by 100 to get the 100s digit. Then it multiples that number by 100, assuming that it has gotten truncated. It subtracts that value from the original number to chop off the 100s digit, and divides the result by 10 to get the 10s digit.

        Similar process to get the 1s digit.

      • 3 types of monitoring and some open source tools to get started | Enable Sysadmin

        Most system administrators have experienced some kind of abrupt, unknown failure with technology and wished they had a way to predict (and possibly prevent) these kinds of issues from happening—especially when it could otherwise mean late-night calls, paperwork explaining outages, and complicated remediation plans.

      • How To Enable BBR on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS – idroot

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to enable BBR on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS. For those of you who didn’t know, Bottleneck Bandwidth and Round-trip propagation time, or BBR, is a congestion control algorithm that powers traffic from google.com and YouTube, Google Cloud Platform, and Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF). Google developed the algorithm, and it can produce higher throughput and lower latency for traffic from your server.

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

      • How To Install Telnet on Debian 11 – idroot

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Telnet on Debian 11. For those of you who didn’t know, Telnet is a terminal emulation program for TCP/IP networks that allows you to access another computer on the Internet or local area network by logging in to the remote system. Telnet listens to all the requests by the user usually on TCP port 23, but you can change it accordingly.

        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 Telnet on a Debian 11 (Bullseye).

      • How to install PHP 5.6 and 7.0 – 7.4 as PHP-FPM & FastCGI for ISPConfig 3.1 with apt on Debian 8 to 10

        This tutorial shows how to install multiple PHP versions on an ISPConfig Debian server. The PHP version can later be selected in the ISPConfig 3 website settings for each site individually. This feature works with PHP-FPM and FastCGI. We will install PHP 5.6 and 7.x as a PHP-FPM and a FastCGI version on a Debian server by using the PHP packages from sury.org.

      • How to integrate ONLYOFFICE Docs with Redmine on Ubuntu

        ONLYOFFICE Docs is an open-source office suite distributed under GNU AGPL v3.0. It comprises web-based viewers and collaborative editors for text documents, spreadsheets, and presentations highly compatible with OOXML formats.

        ONLYOFFICE Docs can be integrated with various cloud services such as Nextcloud, ownCloud, Seafile, Alfresco, Plone, etc., as well as embedded into your own solution. The editors can also be used as a part of the complete productivity solution ONLYOFFICE Workspace.

        Redmine is a free and open-source project management and issue tracking tool that comprises per project wikis and forums, time tracking, and flexible role-based access control. With integrated ONLYOFFICE Docs, you are able to edit and co-author office documents directly from Redmine.

      • How to Install Laravel Framework on Ubuntu – VITUX

        Laravel is an open-source and cross-platform PHP framework that is hailed by web developers everywhere. Laravel is built by Symfony framework and works on model-view-controller pattern. It is highly regarded because it cuts down the grunt work and lets the developers do the real work.

        In this article, You will learn how you can install and set up the Laravel framework on your Ubuntu System.

      • How to Install Brave Browser on Fedora, Red Hat & CentOS

        Brave is an increasingly popular web browser for Linux and other operating system. The focus on blocking ads and tracking by default along with Chrome extension support has made Brave a popular choice among Linux users.

        In this tutorial, you’ll learn to install Brave on Fedora Linux. You’ll also learn about updating it and removing it.

        The tutorial has been tested on Fedora but it should also be valid for other distributions in the Red Hat domain such as CentOS, Alma Linux and Rocky Linux.

      • How to Install KDE Plasma Desktop on Rocky Linux 8 – LinuxCapable

        The name KDE comes from “K Desktop Environment.” For those not familiar with KDE Desktop, it is a free, open-source desktop environment. It provides Linux users on various distributions an alternative graphical interface to customize their desktop environment and applications for everyday use enhancement.

        In Rocky Linux’s case, this is Gnome. Besides the graphical enhancements and changes, it is also a lightweight, fast, smooth environment with superior performance compared to native shipped desktops with some Linux Distributions.

        In the following tutorial, you will have learned how to install KDE Desktop Environment on your Rocky Linux 8 operating system.

      • How to install RabbitMQ in Ubuntu 20.04 – Citizix

        In this guide we will explore how to install the latest release of RabbitMQ in Ubuntu 20.04 Server or Workstation

        RabbitMQ is an open source message broker software that implements the Advanced Message Queuing Protocol (AMQP). RabbitMQ works by receiving messages from publishers (applications that publish them) and routes them to consumers (applications that process them).

      • How to install and configure Grafana with Podman on Rocky LInux.

        In this tutorial guide we are going to install and configure Grafana with Podman on a Rocky LInux server.

        Grafana is a complete observability stack that allows you to monitor and analyze logs, metrics and traces.

        Grafana allows you to query, visualize, alert on and understand your data insight. Grafana can create, explore and create beautiful dashboards that can be shared with your teams.

        Podman is a daemonless, open source, Linux native tool designed to make it easy to find, run, build, share and deploy applications using Open Container Initiative (OCI) containers and container images. Containers can be run as root or as a regular user.

      • How to convert XLS and JSON files to CSV in Linux with csvkit – TechRepublic

        I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to work to upload data to a new system (be it a CMS, CRM, HRM … you name it), only to find out the platform wouldn’t accept the file format I had available. I might have a spreadsheet or JSON file with tons of data, but the system would only accept a CSV file.

      • GNU Linux How to – baby lock keyboard and (touchpad aka) mouse
      • 2 ways to install MailSpring on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS Focal Fossa

        Connecting over email service using the internet connection is not a new thing, it has been there for decades. And to use this service an email account is often a prerequisite for logging and receiving messages. Whereas various E-mail clients help us to smoothly manage our emails, especially if we have multiple e-mail accounts. Out of such clients, one is Mailspring. It is a free and open-source mail client with all the basic functions you want, however, if that is not enough the pro version of the Mailspring is available for Linux such as Ubuntu 20.04/Debian/CentOS, etc, macOS, and Windows… These include pro functions such as later sending, extensive contact profiles, and link tracking.

        Being an email client it can handle multiple e-mail accounts and collects incoming e-mails in a common inbox. Mailspring supports IMAP / SMTP accounts and can handle mails from various services such as Gmail, G Suite, Yahoo, iCloud, Fast Mail Microsoft Office 365. Exchange accounts, however, are currently not supported. Touch gestures and keyboard shortcuts (can be customized) can be used for control. Furthermore, the e-mail client can handle receipts and offers a quick search.

    • Games

      • Soul Tolerance, an investigative RPG from Chaosmonger Studio is on Kickstarter | GamingOnLinux

        Soul Tolerance is the newest title planned by Chaosmonger Studio developer of previous titles like ENCODYA, Clunky Hero and the Robot Will Protect You animation.

        A sci-fi mystery set in the city of Sapporo 2214, it’s an investigative RPG with turn-based combat that the developer says is unique to the genre. In the game you will explore a beautiful world in voxel art, populated solely by robots. On your travels you will speak to various characters, hunt for clues, craft your own minions, and discover a secret that could upset the entire Earth. They say it’s “Disco Elysium meets Cloudpunk meets Divinity: Original Sin”.

      • Video Gaming Like It’s 1983: New Game Cartridges From Atari | Hackaday

        If you remember anything from 1983, it’s likely to be some of the year’s popular culture highlights, maybe Return of the Jedi, or Michael Jackson’s Thriller. For anyone connected with the video gaming industry though, it’s likely that year will stick in the mind for a completely different reason, as the year of the infamous Great Video Games Crash. Overcapacity in the console market coupled with a slew of low quality titles caused sales to crash and a number of companies to go out of business, and the console gaming world would only recover later in the decade with the arrival of the Japanese 8-bit consoles from Nintendo and Sega. You might expect Atari to shy away from such a painful period of their history, but instead they are embracing it as part of their 50th anniversary and launching three never-released titles on cartridges for their 8-bit 2600 console.

      • Today in Windows “11”, Intel audio drivers trigger Blue Screen of Death.

        This sort of thing isn’t even uncommon. It doesn’t take a massive change to Windows to trigger it. Things like this and worse already happened in cumulative updates to Windows 10 which did not have big change logs.

        On GNU/Linux systems, kernel panics are almost unheard of, even with Intel’s shitty uEFI firmware and processor bugs.

      • Terraria x Don’t Starve Together is an indie crossover live for both games now | GamingOnLinux

        Today the Terraria x Don’t Starve Together crossover event is live, with both games seeing an update with elements of the other appear. Sounds like a lot of fun and a surprisingly good fit between them.

        Why though? During the 10th anniversary of Terraria, the developer was asked “If you could implement another crossover into Terraria, what franchise would you choose?” and they replied “If I had to pick just one I would love to do something with Don’t Starve Together”. Shortly after, chats began and this is the result from both development teams.

      • I Love Arch, But GNU Guix Is My New Distro

        I wrote recently about building my new gaming desktop where, if you weren’t blinded by all the lights, I also noted that I’ve moved from Arch to GNU Guix as my distro of choice. Why? And what is Guix? (And no, it is just coincidental that Valve is going all-in with Arch on the Deck.)

        While I’ll get to details on both below, perhaps the simplest answer to “why” is because I just like tinkering. As I’ve written before, that’s very much at the heart of why I love to use Linux and can’t seem to just let a computer be without messing with it in some way. There’s plenty of good reasons why I think this is valuable (from learning to openness), but perhaps foremost it is fun.

        So let me lead with this: Guix, for me, is the most fun I’ve had in Linux in a long time. There are some clear epochs in my Linux life, like being on the bleeding edge as 64-bit went mainstream, compiling kernels (and everything else) on Gentoo, to more recently VFIO and then Proton. Distros in my life have mostly gone from Debian to Gentoo to Arch, to what I think is now my “forever $HOME”: GNU Guix. I’ve always wanted to see what the latest and greatest is: Guix is new and different in a way that truly moves the Linux scene forward.

      • GTA modders behind re3 and reVC fire back in court [Ed: They should have deleted GitHub]

        The ongoing saga of modders versus Take-Two continues on, after some people behind the Grand Theft Auto fan projects “re3″ and “reVC” got their work taken down from GitHub and then sued.

        With the two projects, the developers recreated the game engines used for Grand Theft Auto III and Vice City, which were done through reverse engineering. There was a bit of back and forth as Take-Two sent a DMCA claim to have the projects taken down, a counter-claim was filed that put both back up and then Take-Two formally sent in the lawyers with the lawsuit to get payments in damages.

      • Beyond All Reason is shaping up to be a truly massive RTS | GamingOnLinux

        Based on the SpringRTS game engine, which itself started off by getting Total Annihilation into 3D, Beyond All Reason is going to be a standalone free RTS and it’s coming along nicely.

        The developers announced recently how they’ve been hacking away at the old Spring engine, to bring the performance up to modern standards. Some of what they’ve added in includes a whole new multithreaded pathing system, along with moving to modern OpenGL4 rendering. The result is impressive with better performance, and support for thousands more units and buildings in a single game.

      • The Go Godot Jam 2 starts November 19 | GamingOnLinux

        Ready to try out the free and open source Godot Engine? Here’s a fun chance. As part of the month-long Go Godot Jam 2 Festival, their Game Jam will start soon!

        The main target for the whole thing is of course the Godot audience, however the Festival as a whole is hoping to bring in new people into gave development and showcase Godot as a solid alternative for people looking to switch engines. Officially, the actual Game Jam starts on November 19 but at 10PM UTC the timer ticking down on the itch.io page is up where the actual theme will be revealed.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • KDE Frameworks – Part 2

          CMake is increasingly becoming the de-facto build system for C++ projects. While it has been possible to build Qt applications using CMake for a long time, with Qt6, Qt switched its own internal build system to CMake.

          The KDE Community was among the first large, open-source projects that adopted CMake about 15 years ago. Over this time, a lot of experience with CMake has accumulated in the community and solutions for recurring problems have been implemented.

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • Introducing GNOME Crosswords

          Howdy folks! I want to announce a game for GNOME that I’ve been working on for a few months.

          I’ve always enjoyed solving Crossword puzzles. It’s something I grew up doing as a kid, and we continue to do them as a family at the dinner table at night. I’ve wanted to try my hand at writing crosswords for a while, but there isn’t really a good tool available for doing so, and certainly no free software ones that work well with a recent GNOME release. I recently bought myself a lovely new Fedora-loaded Lenovo, and after it arrived, I thought I’d take a shot at writing such a tool.

        • FCC unlock procedure updates in ModemManager 1.18.4

          If you own a laptop (Dell, HP, Lenovo) with a WWAN module, it is very likely that the modules are FCC-locked on every boot, and the special FCC unlock procedure needs to be run before they can be used.

          Until ModemManager 1.18.2, the procedure was automatically run for the FCC unlock procedures we knew about, but this will no longer happen. Once 1.18.4 is out, the procedure will need to be explicitly enabled by each user, under their own responsibility, or otherwise implicitly enabled after installing an official FCC unlock tool provided by the manufacturer itself.

    • Distributions

      • Pulseaudio MSCW change default sink fix

        As I have reported recently the Multiple Sound Card Wizard is ALSA-centric, with bluez-alsa support bolted on last year, and a first attempt to bolt on pulseaudio support. Now, attempting to improve the pulseaudio support.

        The code is still based on setting the default sound card in /etc/asound.conf, though that might turn out to be limiting.

      • Show-stopper ALSA bug fixed

        The guys testing Easy 3.1.10 reported after plugging in a USB sound adapter, after a reboot, there was no network connection.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • 6 leadership rules I rewrote during the pandemic

          If this article began with a cartoon representing how much time had passed since the start of the pandemic, you’d see a caricature of me with a waist-length ZZ Top-style beard, scratching lines on the wall of my cell to indicate each day that had passed. Each day would be represented by a single line, and the wall would be covered with hundreds of lines.

          During those 500+ days, I haven’t been on a plane or in an office, yet I may have accomplished more than in any other period of my career. I’m sure some road warriors will read that and be saddened. But for me, it served as a semi-sabbatical from the traditional office and gave me a chance to evolve how I work as a CIO.

        • How active listening can make you a better leader

          In today’s digital workplace, listening can be harder than ever. We are continuously inundated with waves of information battling for our attention. Just as you’re collecting your thoughts from one meeting, you’re heading straight into the next.

          Listening is one of the most powerful tools you possess as a leader. It helps you build trust and foster loyalty. It lets others know that they are important to you and that you value what they have to say.

          Unfortunately, many leaders don’t carry this awareness and never learned how to effectively listen. In fact, less than two percent of all professionals have had formal training to improve their listening skills.

        • Runtime profiling in OpenJDK’s HotSpot JVM

          In a previous article, I explained that OpenJDK’s Just-in-Time (JIT) compiler relies heavily on speculation to achieve higher performance. This optimization technique generates code under an assumption that is expected to be correct but can’t be proven certain. If the assumption turns out to be wrong, the JIT compiler prevents incorrect execution by returning control to the bytecode interpreter. This process is called deoptimization.

          This article explains how profiling at runtime can improve speculation and contribute to optimization in other ways. I’ll show examples of profile data collected at runtime, explain how the JIT compiler uses the data, and illustrate the benefits of runtime profiling.

        • Build and store universal application images on OpenShift

          After designing a universal application image that will run well on Kubernetes or Red Hat OpenShift—and that will pass Red Hat Container Certification—your next consideration is how to successfully build and store each image. This article discusses how to use a build pipeline to implement two best practices: Automating compliance with the Open Container Initiative (OCI) and tagging each image with a unique identifier. Using a build pipeline to build and store images automates the process and makes it repeatable and reliable. I’ll also discuss the Red Hat Container Certification requirements for each of these best practices.

        • Design an authorization cache for Envoy proxy using WebAssembly

          This article introduces a high-level design to implement an authorization cache associated with the Envoy proxy using WebAssembly. The goal of this project is to reduce the latencies of HTTP requests passing through the Envoy proxy by reducing the traffic to the service responsible for authentication and authorization of requests. The cache stores data about authorization so that the external service needs to be contacted only on cache misses, instead of for every HTTP request.

          We also provide the source code of an authorization cache that interacts with Red Hat 3scale API Management. The cache was implemented as a part of the Google Summer of Code 2021 project.

          This article is the first in a two-part series. This first article introduces a high-level, generic design that will give you a basic idea of the cache’s overall functionality. The second part explains the major design decisions and implementation details.

        • Rocky Linux 8.5 Now Available with Secure Boot Support

          The latest iteration of CentOS alternative, Rocky Linux has arrived and includes numerous updates as well as support for Secure Boot.

          Soon after Red Hat Enterprise Linux 8.5 was released, AlmaLinux 8.5 Stable was made available. Not to be outshined, the original developer of CentOS has unleashed the 8.5 version of Rocky Linux, which introduces a crucial feature for mass adoptions, Secure Boot support.

          Main developer (and original creator of CentOS), Gregory Kurtzer, says of this release, “There was an amazing amount of work and collaboration that went into this release. The Rocky Release Engineering team went far and above the call of duty to make 8.5 a reality so quickly.”

        • Implementing ANSSI security recommendations for RHEL 7 and 8

          Maintaining security for Linux systems can be a complex task, especially as your number of servers and applications increases. The SCAP Security Guide, which is used in various Red Hat technologies like Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL), Red Hat Insights and Red Hat Satellite, can help you maintain system compliance with select security baselines.

          In this post, we’ll share some details about the SCAP profiles for ANSSI-BP-028, a guideline published by Agence nationale de la sécurité des systèmes d’information (ANSSI), the French National Information Security Agency, and how you use them to assist in hardening your RHEL 7 and 8 environments.

        • How Discover implemented automation as an organization-wide strategy

          Over the past several years, Discover has seen significant growth in our product offerings and in our market share. Behind the scenes, this requires tremendous operational rigor to maintain. With a company of our size and the vast number of processes that span across the business, it becomes clear just how important automation is to our success. Especially within the financial services industry, which is highly regulated, the ability to create predictable and consistent processes is key to unlocking the ability to innovate and continuing our growth trend.

          When our CIO joined the company two years ago, he initiated a transition to a product-based organization, which required focus on fundamental pillars like reliability, tech-optimization and automation as key enablers for its success. Pockets of automation activity had popped up organically, but connectivity across the company was missing. So, we launched Extreme Automation – a dedicated program to holistically push toward a true culture of automation. Our ambitious vision was for each manual process across Discover to be understood, optimized, automated or eliminated.

        • Build RHEL images for Azure with Image Builder [Ed: Red Hat is sucking up to Microsoft again…]
        • Red Hat Shares ― Artificial intelligence & machine learning

          Artificial intelligence (AI) is rules-based software that performs tasks typically accomplished with human intervention. Machine learning (ML) is a subset of AI in which the AI is able to learn and develop over time. These two terms are often combined as AI/ML. AI/ML helps organizations extract insights and value from the massive amounts of data they collect.

          While the term may conjure images of robots and science fiction, real-world AI/ML applications are shaping societies in numerous (and sometimes unexpected) ways. According to Grand View Research, “the global [AI] market size was valued at US$62.35 billion in 2020 and is expected to expand” to US$997.8 billion by 2028. It’s no wonder with all sorts of industries using AI/ML―including to advance breast cancer detection, help reduce road deaths, improve education, and even help people invest via “AI-powered robo-advisors.”

      • Debian Family

        • Proxmox VE 7.1 is Now Available, Includes Many New Highlights

          Proxmox has released version 7.1 of Proxmox Virtual Environment based on Debian Bullseye 11.1, but using a newer Linux kernel 5.13.

          Proxmox VE (Virtual Environment) is a complete, open source server management platform for enterprise virtualization. It integrates the KVM (Kernal-based Virtual Machine) hypervisor and Linux Containers (LXC), software-defined storage, and networking functionality on a single platform.

          One of the greatest features of Proxmox is its managed web-based interface, accessible after installation. This means that you can manage Proxmox through the web interface based on the javascript framework, and it allows the administrator to control all features.

          Yesterday the Enterprise software developer Proxmox Server Solutions GmbH has released version 7.1 of its server virtualization management platform, Proxmox Virtual Environment, so let’s check what’s new.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Web Browsers

        • Chromium

          • Chrome Releases: Beta Channel Update for Desktop

            The Chrome team is excited to announce the promotion of Chrome 97 to the Beta channel for Windows, Mac and Linux. Chrome 97.0.4692.20 contains our usual under-the-hood performance and stability tweaks, but there are also some cool new features to explore – please head to the Chromium blog to learn more!

          • Chrome 97 Beta Released With WebTransport API, HDR Media Queries – Phoronix

            Most notable with today’s Chrome 97 beta release is initial support for WebTransport. WebTransport is a protocol framework similar to WebRTC data channels but principally for clients constrained by the web security model to communicate with a remote server using a secure, multi-plexed transport. WebTransport uses the HTTP/3 protocol for bidirectional transport. Unlike WebSockets that is TCP-based, WebTransport relies on UDP-like datagrams and cancellable streams. Learn more about WebTransport via the W3C working draft at W3.org.

          • Chrome 97: WebTransport, New Array Static Methods and More

            Unless otherwise noted, changes described below apply to the newest Chrome beta channel release for Android, Chrome OS, Linux, macOS, and Windows. Learn more about the features listed here through the provided links. Chrome 97 is beta as of November 18, 2021.

          • Simplified Storage Controls

            Starting today, we will be rolling out this change to M97 Beta, we will be re-configuring our Privacy and Security settings related to data a site can store (e.g. cookies). Users can now delete all data stored by an individual site by navigating to Settings > Privacy and Security > Site Settings > View permissions and data stored across files, where they’ll land on chrome://settings/content/all. We will be removing the more granular controls found when navigating to Settings > Privacy and Security > Cookies and other site data > See all cookies and site data at chrome://settings/siteData from Settings. This capability remains accessible for developers, the intended audience for this level of granularity, in DevTools.

        • Mozilla

          • The magic of mouse gestures – Firefox Add-ons Blog

            Mouse gestures are mouse movement and key combinations that give you the power to customize the way you maneuver around web pages. If your online work requires a fair amount of distinct, repetitive activity—things like rapid page scrolling, opening links in background tabs, closing batches of open tabs, etc.—the right mouse gesture can make a major impact on your task efficiency. Here are a few browser extensions that provide excellent mouse gesture features…

          • Firefox Nightly: These Weeks in Firefox: Issue 104

            A big thank you to all the Outreachy applicants who applied for this cycle.

      • SaaS/Back End/Databases

        • PostgreSQL: pgAdmin 4 v6.2 Released

          The pgAdmin Development Team is pleased to announce pgAdmin 4 version 6.2. This release of pgAdmin 4 includes 22 bug fixes and new features. For more details please see the release notes.

          pgAdmin is the leading Open Source graphical management tool for PostgreSQL. For more information, please see the website.

        • PostgreSQL: Pgpool-II 4.2.6, 4.1.9, 4.0.16, 3.7.21 and 3.6.28 released.

          Pgpool-II is a tool to add useful features to PostgreSQL, including..

        • PostgreSQL: StackGres 1.0.0 released: Open Source Postgres-aaS with 120+ Extensions

          StackGres 1.0.0 is an Open Source Postgres-as-a-Service that runs on any Kubernetes environment. StackGres is the Postgres platform with more Postgres extensions available: 120 as of today. Many more to come in the future.

        • PostgreSQL: Nordic PGDay 2022 calls for papers and sponsors open

          Having been canceled the past two years due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Nordic PGDay is once again scheduled to be an in-person event for the Nordic PostgreSQL community. The format is like before: a one-day single-track event – packed with great content but in a room big enough to ensure desired social distancing.

          Our call for papers is now open, accepting proposals until the end of the year. We welcome speakers from all parts of the world, all talks will be given in English. Technical details, case studies, good ideas or bad ideas — all are good ideas for topics. All speakers get free entrance, so it’s also a good excuse to come visit Finland!

      • Productivity Software/LibreOffice/Calligra

        • German state planning to switch 25,000 PCs to LibreOffice (and GNU/Linux)

          The north-German state of Schleswig-Holstein plans to switch to open source software, including LibreOffice, in its administration and schools.

          In doing so, the state wants to reduce its dependence on proprietary software, and eventually end it altogether. By the end of 2026, Microsoft Office is to be replaced by LibreOffice on all 25,000 computers used by civil servants and employees (including teachers), and the Windows operating system is to be replaced by GNU/Linux.

          The necessary steps for this are specified in the planning of the Schleswig-Holstein state parliament (German), as digital minister Jan Philipp Albrecht explains in an interview with c’t (also German – Google Translate version here).

      • FSFE

        • Dutch government formation: open letter on Free Software and Public Money? Public Code!

          The Dutch government is about to form itself and setting up goals for the next term. With an open letter, the FSFE urges the coalition parties to implement the “open, unless” policy of 2020 and thus the principle of Public Money? Public Code!

          Free Software gives everybody the right to use, study, share, and improve software. This right helps support other fundamental freedoms like freedom of speech, press and privacy. With the principle of “Public Money? Public Code!” implemented, the government will improve the transparency and digital sovereignty.

      • Public Services/Government

        • Looking for Open Source Code Repositories? The French Government Has Your Back

          The French government showed last week just how all-in they are when it comes to open technologies — especially open source software.

          Speaking at the close of the inaugural Open Source Experience conference in Paris, France’s Public Transformation and Civil Service Minister Amélie de Montchalin spelled out the French government’s plans for open source, which included an announcement of the launch of the code.gouv.fr platform, a two-year-in-the-making project that has ambitions to inventory all source code published by public organizations.

          During her address, she indicated that the French government hopes its actions will will have as “many States seek to embark” on the road to adopting and promoting the use of open technologies, saying, “We must now build the public action of the new century.”

      • Programming/Development

        • Save the planet! Program in C, avoid Python, Perl – CNX Software

          As a former software engineer who’s mostly worked with C programming, and to a lesser extent assembler, I know in my heart that those are the two most efficient programming languages since they are so close to the hardware.

          But to remove any doubts, a team of Portuguese university researchers attempted to quantify the energy efficiency of different programming languages (and of their compiler/interpreter) in a paper entitled Energy Efficiency across Programming Languages published in 2017, where they looked at the runtime, memory usage, and energy consumption of twenty-seven well-known programming languages. C is the uncontested winner here being the most efficient, while Python, which I’ll now call the polluters’ programming language :), is right at the bottom of the scale together with Perl.

          The study goes through the methodology and various benchmarks, but let’s pick the binary-trees results to illustrate the point starting with compiled code.

        • C is the Greenest Programming Language

          Have you ever wondered if there is a correlation between a computer’s energy consumption and the choice of programming languages? Well, a group Portuguese university researchers did and set out to quantify it. Their 2017 research paper entitled Energy Efficiency across Programming Languages / How Do Energy, Time, and Memory Relate? may have escaped your attention, as it did ours.

        • Global variable initialisation in C++

          Today Volker Birk and I were speaking over lunch about object initialisation in C++ and about how weakly defined a program entry point is, because of objects with static storage duration.

          Volker wrote a short program whose output changes after reversing the order of two variable definitions, both out of a main function whose entire body was return 0;. He discussed it in German, on his blog.

        • KDE Frameworks – Part 2

          CMake is increasingly becoming the de-facto build system for C++ projects. While it has been possible to build Qt applications using CMake for a long time, with Qt6, Qt switched its own internal build system to CMake.

          The KDE Community was among the first large, open-source projects that adopted CMake about 15 years ago. Over this time, a lot of experience with CMake has accumulated in the community and solutions for recurring problems have been implemented.

          These solutions are available for everyone in the Extra CMake Modules framework, or ECM, for short.

        • Perl/Raku

        • Rust

          • Niko Matsakis: Rustc Reading Club, Take 2

            Wow! The response to the last Rustc Reading Club was overwhelming – literally! We maxed out the number of potential zoom attendees and I couldn’t even join the call! It’s clear that there’s a lot of demand here, which is great. We’ve decided to take another stab at running the Rustc Reading Club, but we’re going to try it a bit differently this time. We’re going to start by selecting a smaller group to do it a few times and see how it goes, and then decide how to scale up.

          • This Week In Rust: This Week in Rust 417
  • Leftovers

    • YOU Are A Projection Of Your Influences | Hackaday

      Who are you? No, who are you really? You’re an amalgamation of influences from your family, your friends, the media, and the parasocial relationships you have with fictional characters. It’s okay; we all are. It can’t be helped that there’s a lot of it about.

      [Kim Pimmel]’s YOU examines this question of identity in the form of projected typography. YOU are solidly laser-cut at birth, but then come the influences — the water of everyday life that surrounds you, the lights that mask your dread or lay you bare, and the prisms of circumstance that twist the light into brilliant patterns that burn memories into your brain.

    • Hardware

      • Know Audio: Get Into The Groove | Hackaday

        In theory, vinyl is capable of returning higher frequencies than CD, assuming that you as the listener have a decent enough record player. But we’ve also established that unless you are a child you probably won’t be able to hear the difference much if at all.

        The last nail in the vinyl coffin, however, is that while a vinyl record may have the capability to hold more information than a CD, the reality is that these days it’s generated from the same master as its digital rivals, so it has probably been cut from the same 44.1 kHz, 16 bit data stream anyway. Maybe vintage recordings can escape this, but then you need to think about the frequency response of whatever magnetic tape was in the studio back when it was recorded. It might be that the reason that you can’t hear the difference between your vinyl and your CDs is that there isn’t a difference to hear in the first place.

        What is certainly true is that a good quality cartridge, turntable, and amp will deliver a superlative listening experience that is the equal of an uncompressed digital stream. And that a lousy turntable will sound atrocious. So enjoy your vinyl if you still use it, after all there’s a pleasure to be had in the feel and look of a 12″ album and its cover. But perhaps don’t make any claims about it that can’t be substantiated without a calibrated reference 10-year-old child.

      • Minty Tunes Is Wireless Audio In An Altoids Tin | Hackaday

        These days, a lot of phones don’t have audio jacks anymore. It can make it hard to listen to music if your favorite headphones aren’t already wireless-enabled. Minty Tunes solves that problem, combined with a little Altoids tin flair.

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Windows 11 issue with Intel audio drivers triggers blue screens
        • Microsoft Continues to Bog Down Edge with Unnecessary Bloat

          Call it the Teamsification of Microsoft Edge: the software giant revealed that it will add yet another superfluous feature to its web browser. And this one is maybe not such a great idea.

        • Microsoft Calls Firefox’s Browser Workaround “Improper,” Will Block It

          Windows 11 lets you choose your default browser, but it takes a lot of clicks and Microsoft sometimes forces you to use Edge, anyway. Firefox had a workaround, but Microsoft calls it “improper” and will soon block it.

        • Free Apple support

          Imagine running a trillion dollar company that bundles various open source components into your products, making billions of dollars of profit annually. When one of your users reach out and ask for help, with the product you ship to your customers, you instead refer the user to the open source project. The project which is run by volunteers which you never sponsored with a cent.

        • There’s something to be said for delayed gratification when Windows 11 is this full of bugs
        • Microsoft Confirms Its Anticompetitive and User Hostile Behavior is Purposeful
        • How Windows 11 May Soon Force You to Use Microsoft Edge

          While browsing through your newly updated Windows 11, you may have noticed that some of the system’s links launch in Microsoft Edge, even if you set Chrome or Firefox to your default browser. If you’re confused about what’s happening, you’re not the only one.

          You’ll notice this happen more often when you launch a link in one of Windows 11′s apps. For example, clicking an article in the “News and Interests” widget always launches itself in Microsoft’s browser, and not whichever browser you’ve set as the default for websites.

          But why is this happening? Let’s dive in and have a closer look.

        • Pseudo-Open Source

        • Security

          • Linux Prepares Straight Line Speculation “SLS” Mitigation For x86/x86_64 CPUs

            Last month I reported on activity around Straight Line Speculation “SLS” mitigation for x86_64 CPUs, similar to the work carried out by Arm last year on their SLS vulnerability. That work on the x86 (x86_64 inclusive) side has now been merged to GCC 12 Git and a kernel patch is expected to come shortly that will flip it on as the latest CPU security protection.

            Prior to a few weeks ago, much of the Straight Line Speculation talk was in reference to mitigating on Arm with GCC and LLVM/Clang having already merged their mitigation. But now there has been increasing x86_64 activity culminating with the GNU Compiler Collection support being merged on Wednesday.

          • TPM sniffing [Ed: Bitlocker is back doored [1, 2]]

            Bitlocker is the Full Disk Encryption (FDE) solution offered by Microsoft for its Windows operating systems starting with Windows Vista to protect users’ data at rest. The solution offers various configurations including several ways to store the decryption key. The most common configuration consists in storing the Volume Master Key (VMK) within the Trusted Platform Module (TPM) that is embedded in recent computers.

            This setup is interesting because the decryption is completely transparent to the user. This benefit surpasses others since many companies are reluctant to configure an additional password/PIN for the user to boot its computer. The downside is that it opens the door to several attacks including the TPM sniffing described in this post but also DMA or Cold Boot attacks.

            Under the hood, the TPM checks various system properties during the startup to ensure that the boot sequence has not been altered. If the validation succeeds, the VMK is released and transmitted to the CPU which could start to decrypt the disk and to load the operating system.

          • 14 security vulnerabilities reported in BusyBox Linux utility

            BusyBox is an open-source utility that combines several standard Unix tools such as cp, ls, grep into a single binary or executable file.

            DevOps firm JFrog and industrial cybersecurity company, Claroty’s researchers have published a joint report to share details of fourteen vulnerabilities they identified in the BusyBox Linux utility.

          • Drupal Releases Security Updates | CISA

            Drupal has released security updates to address vulnerabilities that could affect versions 8.9, 9.1, and 9.2. An attacker could exploit these vulnerabilities to take control of an affected system.

            CISA encourages users and administrators to review Drupal Security Advisory SA-CORE-2021-011 and apply the necessary updates.

          • Security updates for Thursday

            Security updates have been issued by CentOS (binutils, firefox, flatpak, freerdp, httpd, java-1.8.0-openjdk, java-11-openjdk, kernel, openssl, and thunderbird), Fedora (python-sport-activities-features, rpki-client, and vim), and Red Hat (devtoolset-10-annobin and devtoolset-10-binutils).

          • Hackers deploy Linux malware, web skimmer on e-commerce servers [Ed: This does not say how the malware gets there (likely nothing to do with Linux), blames Go language (just because people can write malicious programs in Go), and puts Tux logo for FUD’s worth in this Microsoft-connected site; many of the Linux FUD pieces are likely intended to distract from the platform with back doors in it]
          • Claroty and JFrog discover 14 vulnerabilities in Busybox

            Team82 and JFrog have announced the discovery, by using static and dynamic techniques, of 14 vulnerabilities affecting the latest version of BusyBox.

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • Tom Morello Signs Open Letter Denouncing Amazon’s Palm-Scanning Concert Tech

              Over 200 recording artists, including Tom Morello, Mannequin Pussy, Speedy Ortiz, Bikini Kill’s Kathleen Hanna, and Jeff Rosenstock, have signed off on an open letter demanding that Denver’s famed Red Rocks Amphitheater, ticketing company AXS, and its parent company AEG Worldwide, cancel its contracts to begin implementing palm-scanning technology from Amazon for entry at the venue.

              AEG and AXS announced the addition of the Amazon One Palm Recognition service for Red Rocks in September, touting the concept’s potential as a more convenient, secure, and hygienic alternative for concertgoers to be admitted to a venue compared to traditional tickets. The company said it would add the technology to more of its venues in the future. Critics, however, worry implementing palm scanners at shows comes with serious privacy and safety concerns for concertgoers.

            • Former Democratic Party official says you don’t need VPNs now because the Internet is safe.

              The Deep State definitely doesn’t like VPNs. They have the Southern Poverty Law Center defaming VPN (and Brave Browser, and Matrix) users as “extremists and terrorists”, and Apple’s Tim Cook says that if you want privacy from their on-device scanning that can detect any file at all that the government is looking for (Windows already has one called “Defender”), you’re probably a pedophile, and if you want Freedom-respecting software, you can use an Android phone (because it has F-Droid).

            • Privacy Report: What Android Does In The Background | Hackaday

              We’ve come a long way from the Internet of the 90s and early 00s. Not just in terms of technology, capabilities, and culture, but in the attitude most of us take when accessing the ‘net. In those early days most users had a militant drive to keep any personal or identifying information to themselves beyond the occasional (and often completely fictional) a/s/l, and before eBay and Amazon normalized online shopping it was unheard of to even type in a credit card number. On today’s internet we do all of these things with reckless abandon, and to make matters worse most of us carry around a device which not only holds all of our personal information but also reports everything about us, from our browsing habits to our locations, back to databases to be stored indefinitely.

            • Roy Schestowitz asks why I paid for NordVPN with the Google Play Store.

              Roy Schestowitz asks why I pay for VPNs with the Google Play Store.

              My answer: It’s basically a payment condom.

              People complain they give NordVPN their credit card and can’t stop them from billing them again every month after they cancel.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • “The use of FRT does not require any anchoring legislation” – The Meghalaya Government

        In July, 2021, a press release by the Government of Meghalaya stated that facial recognition technology (FRT) would be used to verify the identity of pensioners to issue a Digital Life Certificate. On August 5, 2021, we provided support to Mr. Jade Jeremiah Lyngdoh, a law student, in sending a legal notice to the relevant authorities seeking reconsideration of such use of FRT in view of the possible privacy concerns. The Meghalaya Government by its response dated November 1, 2021 has explained its position. We welcome the department’s reply and believe that it encourages discussion and transparency around FRT, however, the reply suffers from various legal infirmities which we have analysed below.

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

      • No verifiable records of Internet shutdowns available: parliamentary panel

        There were no verifiable, centralised records of Internet shutdowns in the country. Neither the Ministry of Home Affairs nor the Department of Telecom maintain such a record, the parliamentary standing committee on information and technology pointed out in its report adopted on Tuesday.

        The committee, headed by senior Congress leader Shashi Tharoor, pressed for a detailed study on the economic impact owing to frequent and prolonged Internet shutdowns.

    • Monopolies

      • How Does Competition Affect Reputation Incentives? Evidence from Airbnb – Disruptive Competition Project

        Would you ever rent a house you have never seen, whose owner you have never met, in a city you have never visited? Would you ever pay upfront to a person you do not know, and you will never meet, who promises to deliver an object you have never seen? A few decades ago, the answers to these questions would have been negative for most customers. Conversely, nowadays, millions of users rely on digital platforms like Airbnb and eBay to do precisely as described above. How is that possible? How did users around the world start to trust each other after millennia of skepticism?

        An answer to such questions relies on the innovative way digital marketplaces reduce information asymmetry between parties: review systems. In almost all digital platforms, users can review the services they have experienced, providing new information to prospective users.

        My paper “Competition and Reputation in a Congested Marketplace: Theory and Evidence from Airbnb” addresses such questions. Here I study how ratings on Airbnb help hosts to build their reputation, gain the trust of potential guests, and increase their profits.

      • Patents

        • Software Patents

          • Bilibili: Another Chinese Company Joins the Open Invention Network

            On Tuesday, the Durham, North Carolina-based Open Invention Network announced that the Chinese firm Bilbili has thrown its patents into pot to protect the Linux system from patent trolls by becoming an OIN member. Shanghai-based Bilbili operates a video sharing website that focuses on animation, comics, and games. The site has 237 million active monthly users and 20.9 million paying users, according to the data company Statista.

      • Copyrights

After Creating the Compatibility Nightmare, Microsoft Calls for Preserving Older Games

Posted in Deception, Microsoft, Windows at 4:00 pm by Guest Editorial Team

Guest post by Ryan, reprinted with permission from the original

Microsoft has created a compatibility nightmare, but claims they “love” compatibility.

Both for gaming, and for applications in general, they have created a compatibility nightmare that continues growing by the minute.

On the consoles, they hopped between processor families (x86, PowerPC, then x86 again), came up with DRM schemes that publishers used, which caused Microsoft to give up and remove the emulator for their first XBOX console from the XBOX 360, and other disasters.

On the PC side, the situation is much worse. Windows doesn’t “evolve” so much as it turns into a bigger ball of crap. Then they sabotage an OS that clocks in at 70-80 GB anyway, by removing a few MB of compatibility DirectX 9 files and the console Editor.

(There’s a port of GNU Nano to Windows that you could use if you had to, but like most things, it’s better on GNU/Linux.)

Microsoft’s latest PC disaster is the divorce from Intel that’s sure to spark both companies suing each other when Microsoft tries to change to ARM. Intel openly threatened Microsoft previously (with patents), and Windows has been on ARM before and didn’t do well.

Even if there is an x86 emulator this time, emulators are slow and imperfect, and while they may run some crap Microsoft office program, video games that are currently breaking down due to minor changes Intel made on actual x86 CPUs (Denuvo) aren’t going to work properly.

Add it all up, and for digital preservation, Wine, DOSBox, and piracy are about all we have.

I doubt this is what Microsoft means when they say preservation though.

Microsoft is fully well aware that making transitions to GNU/Linux and Free Software as difficult as possible is the only thing holding back the flood gates of the consumer market abandoning them. That’s why they designed Direct3D 12 to not map cleanly to Vulkan, and why Valve is creating a new extension to Vulkan to overcome this.

The future of Windows gaming won’t be on Windows at all. Valve is sick of Microsoft’s compatibility messes too, because Windows being incompatible with itself hurts Valve’s ability to sell games and increases the costs of supporting their Steam customers with updates because something on Windows changed.

Valve knows that with Proton, they can make a profile for each game and it will keep working. Gamers who want a system that works instead of Windows adding poorer performance with bloat and compatibility hell should migrate.

Richard Stallman said that even if gamers play proprietary games on GNU/Linux, they’ll at least avoid the harm Windows would do to them.

Hell, even “Supersite for Windows” clown, Paul Thurrott, is really mad about Edge demanding to pop open all the time and said there should be legal action taken against Microsoft and that they are bloating it with stupid self-serving anti-features, which I mentioned previously. When Microsoft has him talking this way, you know they’ve blown it.

This aside, GNU/Linux has a lot more to offer than Windows gaming through Wine, and native titles. It emulates most of the major consoles that have come and gone throughout the years. Your original XBOX may have broken down years ago, but Xemu will just keep getting better.

In fact, Microsoft has managed to make Windows 100x bigger while breaking classic titles like Obsidian’s very well received Knights of the Old Republic I and II. But they work on an XBOX emulator.

There is absolutely no substitute for having a disc in your hand, or an ISO file, on a system that they can’t change and take away from you.

With DRM and the automatic updates backdoor, forced updates that break stuff, where they let you find out it sneaks nasty stuff in that they didn’t even mention, makes Windows 10 and “11” a polymorphic computer virus. There’s no compatibility here, no preservation. It’s all temporary.

Microsoft keeps rebuilding Skyrim and pushing those updates on Steam. The community on Reddit who liked the game before Bethesda was taken over now complain about the unnecessary Microsoft updates, which add more stuff that interferes with Wine and Proton (when the original binaries worked fine, and now you have to get them from a pirate if you want them!).

Users on Reddit report that they disable their Steam updates (at least they can do that if they HAD an older version already) to avoid having to go through broken mods and new dependencies on Windows Media Audio(!) and a recompile with Visual Studio 2019 that makes it work slower and breaks more things, because some mods hook into executables, and the binary offsets are now different.

(This is related to those Fallout 4 problems I had to hack around! Leave it to Microsoft to come back and make new Skyrim binaries that are worse than the ones from 2012.)

Microsoft can say whatever it wants to about loving “Linux” and wanting compatibility (even as they throw more stuff onto the big shitpile, like this ARM mess), but the computing industry would be best served if they would just f**king die already.

I can’t state in strong enough words how sick I am of their behavior. The words, in English, do not exist. And it’s not enough that they foul their own nest.

Now that their own OS is such crap that they themselves don’t use it in Azure, Bing, or Skype, they infiltrate Linux and pollute it with poorly designed interfaces, and extra attack surface that doesn’t belong in the kernel (like an SMB server when we already had Samba).

A Look at Gemini Protocol and Specification (Latest Update 4 Days Ago)

Posted in Site News at 1:20 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Video download link | md5sum cbea0e64b45d23b48425ac06774ec5e2

Summary: Minor amendments to Gemini Protocol are being registered, e.g. “the specification now explicitly forbids the use of Unicode byte order marks (BOMs) in either Gemini requests or Gemini response headers.” It seems like Gemini Protocol is almost finalised by now and it stays as simple as intended all along.

ABOUT three weeks ago Solderpunk returned from a long hiatus, looking to update the Gemini specifications in their official home. 4 days ago he announced in the official mailing list:

Hi folks,

I have just pushed another set of small updates to the specification.

In addition to assorted spelling and grammar fixes, and clarifying that 
keywords MUST, SHOULD etc. should be interpreted against BCP14, there 
are two substantive changes.

The first is that the specification is now explicit about what to do in 
the event that a request including a query component receives a 3x 
redirect status code in response: the redirect URL should be used as is, 
and the client should not apply the original request's query to the 
redirect URL.  If you are the author of a client which *does* modify 
redirect URLs in this way, you need to change this behaviour in order to 
be spec compliant.

The second is that the specification now explicitly forbids the use of 
Unicode byte order marks (BOMs) in either Gemini requests or Gemini 
response headers.  If your client or server includes a BOM in these 
places, you should stop doing that.  There will be a future update 
dealing with the use of BOMs in Gemini response bodies as well, but the 
changes I just pushed affect only response headers.

Chances are very good nobody actually needs to make any changes to code 
as a result of these updates.


It is probably apparent from the above that the changes are non-disruptive and mostly cosmetic at this point, looking to remove ambiguities without inflicting workload/burden on writers and developers. This is where simplicity truly pays off. Those who move fast and break everything typically leave behing them a trail of technical debt — an area where many feel the Web failed. It’s almost impossible to write a Web browser from scratch anymore; it’ll fail to properly render most of today’s Web site. NetSurf can deal with plenty of decent sites, but it cannot be used exclusively if there’s expectation of things like online banks becoming necessary.

The video at the top is just me going through the latest version of the specification, pointing out which parts are of relevance to people who compose pages. It can all be learned in a matter of minutes, not hours, and it lowers the entry barriers, leading towards self-publishing on the Internet.

Why We’ve Been Writing More About Software Freedom Lately

Posted in Europe, Free/Libre Software, GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Patents at 9:53 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Video download link | md5sum 3591ba4caf41a7adc93b3cebb10d87d2

Summary: At this moment in time we prepare more parts of ongoing series about the EPO and GitHub (awaiting more feedback and fact-checking of Microsoft affairs); this means we have more of an opportunity to improve the site/capsule and write about Software Freedom

WITH Vista 11 failing at adoption (hence Microsoft keeps quiet about metrics; one needs to turn elsewhere for statistics) and Microsoft boosters openly complaining about bugs and about user-hostile behaviour we’re already staring at a dying operating system or languishing old monopoly, taken not exactly by surprise as many people shift to newer form factors. They just don’t use computers the way they used to…

“…quite a few people are also quite aware of what is happening and threatening to leave for GNU/Linux or actually leaving…”
“I am quite sure that the main reason for the existence of Vista11 is to push TPM chips into all consumer notebooks and desktops,” an associate noted this morning. “That will then get daisychained to UEFI in Vista12.”

As psydruid put it, “quite a few people are also quite aware of what is happening and threatening to leave for GNU/Linux or actually leaving…” (see links above)

Well, UEFI ‘secure’ boot will give them a harder time; that was the whole point of it.

“At the moment we prepare a bunch of improvements for Gemini.”Moreover, Microsoft is nowadays shamelessly manipulating Windows users and “that was also apparent in the post on Thurrott’s site,” psydruid noted. “Microsoft (and Intel) are going to be experiencing a death by a thousand cuts. Microsoft isn’t going to survive the transition to ARM and RISC-V and the little market share it will still have is going to be eroded the same way it is on x86 [...] it’s just another branch of the battle to bring games to Linux + OpenGL/Vulkan but gaming is often the only reason why people still run Vista at home…”

At the moment the EPO is exceptionally quiet, as I note in the video above, but we have a lot more coming (The EPO’s Overseer/Overseen Collusion and Microsoft GitHub Exposé, where we’ve only scratched the surface thus far).

At the moment we prepare a bunch of improvements for Gemini. It helps ensure that Techrights does not depend on the Web more than it needs to.

The EPO’s site remains a source of lies and paranoia. The management at EPOnia is afraid of the media actually investigating things instead of parroting press releases.

RTL Nieuws programme

Links 18/11/2021: Latte Dock 0.10.4 and $5,000 DIY Raspberry Pi Server

Posted in News Roundup at 7:18 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • Leftovers

    • “Come Writers and Critics…”

      A few years passed and I bought Bill’s book and began reading his sweeping assessment of US interventions around the world since the end of the Second World War. I had been doing some parallel reading, as I’m a devoted fan of the lives and some policies of both Eleanor and Franklin Roosevelt and the parallels between Bill’s writing and the Roosevelts’ actions and points of view during the war, and for Eleanor, following the war, were striking.

      Bill’s research is amazingly thorough. I had the same sense when I read his foreign policy articles at his Internet site, The Anti-Empire Report. Reading Bill’s writing was akin to the awakening of a critical mass from the baby boomer generation of the 1960s and early 1970s. You knew you were onto something earthshaking! It was like a foreign policy epiphany!

    • Resisting the Panopticon

      But, no, Panopto isn’t a spoof out of the pages of The Onion. It’s a Seattle-based company, started in 2007, that sells software for managing “video learning content.” Panopto’s website boasts that more than 1,000 leading businesses and academic institutions use its products. What the company sells to universities is a system for creating searchable libraries of an institution’s “video assets,” which include “lectures, flipped classroom recordings, campus events, guest presentations, athletic competitions, alumni outreach, live webcasts and more.” Panopto indeed.

      Last spring, I learned that North Carolina State University planned to make Panopto available for faculty use. My understanding was that Panopto would be another option, like Screencast or Mediasite, for putting video-recorded course material online, at each faculty member’s discretion. It now appears that administrators intended to use Panopto in a different way.

    • Education

      • Danes the third best non-Anglophone speakers of English in the world

        A global survey of the world’s English-language skills, the English Proficiency Index, has ranked Danes as the third most proficient non-native English-speakers.

        Based on the data of over 1 million standardised EFSET tests conducted in 112 non-English speaking countries, the ranking is conducted annually by the education organisation EF Education First,

        This year Denmark has been pipped to the post by the Netherlands in first place and Austria in second.

    • Health/Nutrition/Agriculture

      • Opinion | US and UK Press Mock New Zealand’s Incredibly Successful Covid Response

        When New Zealand’s Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced the country’s transition away from its coronavirus elimination strategy, also known as “zero-Covid,” US and British media outlets framed the decision as a recognition of the inevitable failure of an irrational goal.

      • Does spike protein from COVID-19 vaccines interfere with DNA damage repair?

        Every so often there is a study that goes so viral that people start sending it to me and asking me if there’s anything to it. Sometimes I act and write about such studies; sometimes I do not. Sometimes I roll my eyes at the study and think it’s not worth bothering with, only to see how widely it is being disseminated to spread fear, uncertainty, and doubt about vaccines, cancer treatment, conventional medicine, and the like. When that happens, I generally break down and look at the study. So it has been this week with a study out of Sweden that is being spread far and wide that claims that spike protein gets into the nucleus and interferes with the repair of DNA damage (specifically double-stranded breaks in DNA) by blocking the action of BRCA1, a very important DNA damage repair protein, and 53BP1. For reference, BRCA1 mutations can predispose to a very high lifetime risk of certain cancers, in particular breast and ovarian cancer.

      • ‘Moderna Is Trying to Turn This People’s Vaccine Into a Rich People’s Vaccine’

        Janine Jackson interviewed Public Citizen’s Peter Maybarduk about the NIH/Moderna vaccine patent for the November 12, 2021, episode of CounterSpin. This is a lightly edited transcript.

      • ‘We Need a Global Solution’: Critics Say Biden Plan to Boost Vaccine Supply Not Nearly Enough

        Vaccine equity advocates said the White House’s Wednesday announcement that it plans on ramping up domestic manufacturing to produce an additional one billion Covid-19 shots a year is a welcome step that still fails to meet the urgency of the moment.

        The development, first reported by the New York Times, came amid sustained accusations that rich nations, including the U.S., are contributing to global Covid-19 “vaccine apartheid” by hoarding doses and insufficiently pressuring pharmaceutical companies—who are swirling in profits—to share their technology and know-how to bring the virus that’s killed over five million people worldwide to an end.

      • Air pollution in Europe still killing more than 300,000 a year, report finds

        Premature deaths caused by fine particle air pollution have fallen 10 percent annually across Europe, but the invisible killer still accounts for 307,000 premature deaths a year, the European Environment Agency said Monday.

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Jury continues deliberations in Rittenhouse trial

          The videos were placed on a thumb drive and presented to the jurors on what the judge described as a “sanitized” laptop. Jurors viewed those videos in the jury room.


          During a discussion in court this afternoon, prosecutors addressed a motion to dismiss the case by the defense, calling it “factually inaccurate.”

          What is this about: In a motion to dismiss the case filed earlier this week, the defense claimed that, “On November 5, 2021, the fifth day of trial on this case, the prosecution turned over to the defense footage of drone video which captured some of the incident from August 25, 2020. The problem is, the prosecution gave the defense a compressed version of the video.”

          “What that means is the video provided to the defense was not as clear as the video kept by the state,” the motion continued.

          The defense claimed that the version they were given “was only 3.6 megabytes, while the state had a higher resolution version that was 11.2 megabytes.”

        • Rittenhouse defense requests a mistrial after iPhone Mail app compresses key video evidence

          Rittenhouse’s lawyers say they only received a copy of the drone video on November 5th, after the trial started, and that instead of the 11.2MB video possessed by the state, the file they received was just 3.6MB. “What that means is the video provided to the defense was not as clear as the video kept by the state,” the motion for mistrial claims.

        • Noyb files another complaint against Amazon Europe – black box algorithm discriminates customers

          The GDPR requires transparency regarding solely automated individual decisions based on personal data, such as whether or not to allow payment on account. A company using automated decision making must provide the data subject with meaningful information about the logic involved and the scope of the underlying data processing already upon data collection (Article 13(2)(f) or Article 14(2)(g) GDPR). Amazon manifestly violates these provisions. Its privacy policy only contains vague information about some credit checking mechanisms but no explanation whatsoever on how the decision on allowing or rejecting payment via “Monthly Invoicing” is taken.

          Furthermore, under the GDPR any automatically taken decision must be verifiable by humans – who must have the capacity to override the machine’s decision. This is obviously not possible at Amazon, as their billing department clarifies: “This automated decision can have various causes and cannot be adapted manually.” Ironically, Amazon justifies this by saying that customer service cannot see the exact reason for the rejection “for data protection reasons”. Amazon also refused to clarify whether internal information or a negative credit score were used as part of the decision-making process.

        • Security

          • Tech CEO Pleads to Wire Fraud in IP Address Scheme

            The CEO of a South Carolina technology firm has pleaded guilty to 20 counts of wire fraud in connection with an elaborate network of phony companies set up to obtain more than 735,000 Internet Protocol (IP) addresses from the nonprofit organization that leases the digital real estate to entities in North America.

          • Techdirt Podcast Episode 305: Missouri Hasn’t Really Learned Its Lesson

            We’ve got a crossposted episode for you this week: Mike recently joined The Cato Daily Podcast with Caleb O. Brown for a discussion about the “hacking” fiasco in Missouri and the state’s treatment of the journalists who exposed its huge data security flub. It’s a shorter conversation than our usual podcasts, and you can listen to the whole thing on this week’s episode.

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • Artists, Rights Groups Denounce ‘Invasive’ Palm-Scanning of Concertgoers by Amazon

              More than 200 musical artists and 30 human rights groups on Tuesday endorsed a Fight for the Future-led campaign opposing the use of Amazon palm-scanning technology at Colorado’s famous Red Rocks Amphitheatre.

              “Introducing biometric surveillance technology at events, even just for the marginal-at-best ‘convenience’ of making the line move faster, makes music fans less safe.”

            • The SSL Store interview

              My job predominantly within higher education was to research and write on various industries related to the institutions’ academic programs, which included computer science and technology. Then I moved on to a digital marketing agency, where I work for a variety of clients, including some cybersecurity companies—SaaS and MSPs. I learned about cybersecurity and IT security through those experiences, as well as my own research over time.

            • Tor and the humans who use it
            • Help Censored Users, Run a Tor Bridge
            • How to delete your Instagram account

              If you’ve made the decision to delete Instagram, whether because you’ve outgrown the need for a certain finsta or because its parent company Meta is courting controversy again, doing so isn’t as quick or easy as it should be. It can’t even be done from within the Instagram app.

              Go ahead and take a moment to make an obligatory “I’m deleting Instagram” post if you’d like, and then follow these steps to ditch your account — they can be followed using either a computer or phone, as long as you’re using a browser.

            • Facebook’s “Metaverse” Must Be Stopped

              Silicon Valley has a long history of big dreams that are not realized, from the libertarian utopia that the internet was framed as in its early days to the ubiquitous autonomous vehicles that were supposed to have replaced car ownership by now. The metaverse is likely to suffer the same fate, but that doesn’t mean it will have no impact at all. As Brian Merchant has explained, the tech industry is in desperate need of a new framework to throw money at after so many of its big bets from the past decade have failed, and the metaverse could be poised to take that place.

            • Chat Control: The End of the Privacy of Digital Correspondence

              But this is not the end of the story: For autumn 2021, European Commission announced that it will propose a follow-up legislation that will make the use of chatcontrol mandatory for all e-mail and messenger providers. This legislation might then also affect securely end-to-end encrypted communications. However, a public consultation by the Commission on this project showed that the majority of respondents, both citizens and stakeholders, were opposed to an obligation to use chat control. Over 80% of respondents opposed its application to end-to-end encrypted communications. As a result, the Commission postponed the draft legislation originally announced for July to

              December 2021Q1 2022.

            • Why chat control is so dangerous – European Digital Rights (EDRi)

              So far, there are no broad civil society alliances against the proposal, but the protest is just getting louder. MEP Patrick Breyer has put together an info page and calls for action at chatkontrolle.de. He calls on people to contact representatives of the EU Commission, such as the EU Commissioner for Home Affairs, Ylva Johannson, or the EU Commission President, Ursula von der Leyen, via telephone and e-mail and to express their protest. In the coming weeks, civil society alliances and other forms of protest could also emerge. For this, it can be helpful to get involved yourself and contact civil rights and digital organizations about the issue of chat control.

            • Why we have public websites on private IPs (internally)

              In yesterday’s entry about how Chrome may start restricting requests to private networks, I mentioned that we have various public websites that are actually on private IPs, as far as people inside our network perimeter are concerned. You might wonder why. The too-short answer is that we don’t have enough public IPs to go around, but the longer answer is that it’s because of how our internal networks are organized.

            • What you need to know about the Facebook Papers

              Facebook is now undergoing what may be the tech giant’s biggest crisis in its 17-year history. In October, The Washington Post reported that a second Facebook whistleblower came forward to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, alleging that the company prioritises growth over combating hate speech, disinformation, and other threats to the public. The whistleblower’s testimony follows that of former Facebook employee Frances Haugen, whose legal counsel released what’s known as the Facebook Papers — a 10,000-page collection of internal reports, memos, and chat logs leaked to more than a dozen major news outlets.

            • Tinkering with keys weakens encryption

              In short, if you are talking about the security of encryption, you should also be talking about key management. Or maybe especially so. Therefore, a well-known saying (at least among security experts) is, “Hackers don’t break encryption, they find your keys.” We need to worry less about breaking the algorithm and focus more on handling keys. Key management is an integral part of the whole of encryption. You cannot say that you are not weakening the encryption (for example, because you are not modifying the underlying algorithm) if at the same time you are tinkering with the key management or configuration.

            • Confidentiality

              • Singapore fines hotel booking site for leaking 5.9m records • The Register

                Singapore’s Personal Data Protection Commission (PDPC) has issued a fine of SG$74,000 ($54,456) on travel company Commeasure, which operates a travel booking website named RedDoorz that exposed 5.9 million customers’ data – the largest data breach handled by the Commission since its inception.

                The PDPC announced the penalty for “failing to put in place reasonable security arrangements to prevent the unauthorised access and exfiltration of customers’ personal data hosted in a cloud database”.

                RedDoorz started life in Indonesia before moving its operations to Singapore, from where it aggregates budget hotel bookings in select Southeast Asian cities. A user selects a budget hotel from RedDoorz based on photos, area and price, not always knowing the actual name or location of the hotel . When the traveller arrives, the hotel room experience is rebranded as RedDoorz and comes with certain guaranteed services – like WiFi, TV and potable water.

    • Defence/Aggression

      • A Cop Is Finally in Trouble for Using Excessive Force—Against Dogs

        I’ve written recently about qualified immunity, which is the concept that law enforcement or other government officials cannot be held personally liable for the harm they cause doing their jobs. Lawyers and activists have noted that the doctrine essentially shields law officers from accountability when they violate people’s constitutional rights, allowing cops to shoot people and face no consequences. But courts have steadfastly upheld qualified immunity—a fact that has led me to argue that congressional action is the only hope for rolling back the current rules.

      • Pentagon And Its Overseers Suppressed Whistleblowers Who Challenged Massacre In Syria

        This article was funded by paid subscribers of The Dissenter, a project of Shadowproof. Become a paid subscriber and help us expand our work.

        Whistleblowers in the United States military exposed a strike in Syria that resulted in the massacre of around 70 women and children, according to an investigation by the New York Times. The command responsible for the strike conceded a war crime may have taken place, but a report by the Office of the Inspector General for the Defense Department removed this opinion. Officials in the Pentagon impeded an investigation and ensured no one would ever be held accountable for the civilian deaths. They also turned on one of the whistleblowers, forcing them out of their position in the I.G.’s office. What happened proves once again that going through proper channels can be a fruitless and risky career-ending effort. Lisa Ling, a former tech sergeant who worked on drone surveillance systems and is a known whistleblower, reacted, “Again, the public is notified of a ‘possible’ war crime by a brave whistleblower who was eventually forced out of their job.” “This is a pattern that exemplifies the need for robust whistleblower protections especially for the intelligence community so often carved out of them. We need more light shined in these secret spaces so that this doesn’t happen again, and again, and again, without the public knowing what is done in our name.”As the Times reported, on March 18, 2019, “In the last days of the battle against the Islamic State in Syria, when members of the once-fierce caliphate were cornered in a dirt field next to a town called Baghuz, a U.S. military drone circled high overhead, hunting for military targets. But it saw only a large crowd of women and children huddled against a river bank.”U.S. military forces launched a double tap strike. An American F-15E “attack jet” dropped a 500-pound bomb. As survivors scrambled for cover, another jet dropped a 2,000-pound bomb that killed “most of the survivors.” A “high-definition drone” recorded the scene prior to the bombing. Two or three men were near a compound. Though they had rifles, neither engaged coalition forces. Women and children were observed in the area.“At nearly every step, the military made moves that concealed the catastrophic strike. The death toll was downplayed. Reports were delayed, sanitized, and classified,” and the Times added, “Coalition forces bulldozed the blast site.” The strike was the work of a classified U.S. special operations unit known as Task Force 9. They were responsible for the third-worst “casualty event” in Syria. According to the Times, an unnamed Air Force intelligence officer in the Combined Air Operations Center at Al Udeid Air Base in Qatar contacted Lieutenant Colonel Dean Korsak, who was an Air Force lawyer. They were ordered to preserve video and other evidence from the “F-15E squadron and drone crew.” Korsak concluded a “possible war crime” was committed that required an independent investigation. He noted that Task Force 9 was “clearly seeking to cover up” incidents like this strike by logging false entries after the fact—for example, the man had a gun. The Air Force’s Office of Special Investigations was notified. However, as the Times recalled, a major refused to investigate because civilian casualties were only investigated if there was a “potential for media attention, concern with outcry from local community/government, [and/or] concern sensitive images may get out.”

      • Opinion | Steve Bannon and the Deadly Implications of ‘Deconstructing the Administrative State’

        Yale historian Timothy’s Snyder’s Black Earth: The Holocaust as History and Warning was published in 2015. It was a book on a subject that had already received vast attention from historians, but it stood out for its novel thesis: it was traditional bureaucratic state structures which protected persons under their aegis. This applied even during the Holocaust. It was the destruction of the state apparatus or the stripping of persons’ citizenship that made the worst horrors possible.

      • Saudi Coalition Withdrawal from Hodeidah Raises Hopes Yemen War May Be Coming to an End

        In the latest strategic blow to the Saudi-led Coalition in Yemen, forces from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have withdrawn from three strategic directorates in southern Hodeidah, Yemen’s main entry point. The withdrawal comes on the heels of Ansar Allah’s recent capture of the oil-rich Marib province, the Saudi-backed government’s last northern stronghold.

      • Jacob Chansley, Man Known as “QAnon Shaman” Sentenced for Role in Capitol Attack
      • The Trump Legacy: Threats and Violence

        That legislation sorely was needed because major fixes to the nation’s roads, bridges, ports, tunnels and airports have been ignored for decades. A bridge between Ohio and Kentucky is in such bad shape that even obstructionist Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of the Bluegrass State voted for the bill.

        Good for the Maverick 13 for shining a light on a despicable cabal of cowards who shamelessly follow the wicked whims of the former president who thinks, or pretends he thinks, he won the election. Trouble is, he’s persuaded a hefty percentage of Republicans that he did.

      • Situation in Belarus closer to military action than migrant crisis – Finnish FM

        In his view, the reason why Belarusian officials directed irregular migrants to the border with Poland was to exploit the current rift between Warsaw and Brussels. However, Haavisto said, Lukashenko has failed to divide the EU.

      • EU readies sanctions for migrant trafficking over Belarus border crisis

        Thousands of migrants from the Middle East are camped out on the EU-Belarus border, creating a stand-off between the EU and US on one side and Belarus and its ally Russia on the other.

        Western countries accuse Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko’s regime of engineering the crisis by encouraging migrants to come to Belarus and then taking them to the border since the summer.

      • More than 600 migrants reach Italy by sea from north Africa

        Italy has seen a sharp increase in boat migrants in recent weeks and the latest mass arrivals will put further pressure on Prime Minister Mario Draghi’s government to secure an agreement with European Union partners over how to deal with the influx.

      • Why the war against jihadists in Mali is going badly

        The biggest Western fight against jihadists is now in Mali, Niger and Burkina Faso. France has about 5,000 soldiers fighting in the region, backed by about 1,000 American troops. Hundreds of European commandos help them and train the Malian army. The UN has almost 15,000 peacekeepers. Yet even with these forces arrayed against them, the insurgents have spread relentlessly across Mali and deep into neighbouring Niger and Burkina Faso. More than 2m people have been forced from their homes and more than 10,000 killed in the past two years (see chart).

    • Environment

      • Opinion | The Climate Crisis Is a Human Rights Crisis

        COP26 ended last weekend and with it, hopes that the negotiations would meaningfully address the needs of Indigenous and frontline communities facing the worst effects of the climate crisis. The United Kingdom, which hosted this year’s COP, promised it would be one of the most inclusive international climate negotiations ever, but in reality, Indigenous and frontline voices were drowned out by the usual chorus of empty climate commitments. 

      • If You Care About the Climate, Pay Attention to Koch Cash

        Earlier this month, President Joe Biden announced new methane restrictions at the COP26 conference, which will require a 30 percent cut in methane emissions by 2030 by more than 100 countries. The move underscores the importance of climate policy regulations, especially in the face of discouraging prospects of national action from Congress. This story was produced for Student Nation, a program of the Nation Fund for Independent Journalism, which is dedicated to highlighting the best of student journalism. For more Student Nation, check out our archive or learn more about the program here. StudentNation is made possible through generous funding from The Puffin Foundation. If you’re a student and you have an article idea, please send pitches and questions to [email protected].

      • Extreme weather outruns the world
      • ‘The water is poison’: Chinese activist spends life protecting polluted lake

        Zhang started to denounce polluting companies who exploited resources or built without permission — often facing an uphill struggle to reach sympathetic ears.

        Local officials simply haven’t done enough to protect the local environment, he says.

        s “Why? Because they had collaborated with these enterprises,” he said.

      • The Celebrity-Backed Green “Fintech” Company That Isn’t as Green as It Seems

        You can save the planet with a swipe of your bank card. That’s the enticing proposition made by a company called Aspiration, which promises to take the leftover change from customers’ purchases and use it to plant trees around the world. Aspiration is on track to spend $149 million this year marketing that message, according to its financial documents, considerably more than the revenues the company expects to take in.

        “Clean rich is the new filthy rich,” Aspiration proclaims on billboards across New York, Texas and California. Other ads, ubiquitous on social media, feature images of Aspiration’s debit card, which depicts a green treescape and is made from recycled plastic. The likes of Leonardo DiCaprio, Orlando Bloom, Robert Downey Jr. and Drake have invested in the company. Aspiration has received enthusiastic press coverage (with the exception of a critical dissection by New York University marketing professor Scott Galloway). And the company won further headlines in September for its reported $300 million, 23-year sponsorship deal with the Los Angeles Clippers, which will feature Aspiration’s name on signs inside the Clippers’ new arena, give the company a role in sustainability initiatives and put its logo on the jersey of every Clippers player.

      • Another Climate Summit Failure
      • Climate Colonialism: Why Was Occupied Western Sahara Excluded from COP26 U.N. Summit in Scotland?

        Activists are criticizing the British government for excluding Western Sahara, occupied by Morocco since 1975, from the U.N. climate summit in Scotland. Meanwhile, Morocco is counting renewable energy developments in Western Sahara towards its own climate pledges. Sahwari activists and the Sahrawi government in exile known as SADR, the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic, have described this as climate colonialism. Negotiators from Western Sahara independently announced a plan to reduce carbon emissions outside COP26, as the climate crisis has brought extreme weather conditions including drought, extreme heat and flooding to the region. In an interview last week in Glasgow, Scotland while COP26 was underway, Oubi Bouchraya Bachir, a representative of the Polisario Front for Europe and the European Union, estimated 30% of the solar energy produced by Morocco “will be produced from within the illegal context of occupation.” We also spoke with climate change consultant Nick Brooks, who has traveled to Western Sahara for decades to carry out archaeological and palaeo-environmental fieldwork and helped release the Sahrawi climate plan adjacent to the COP26. “They have been completely and systematically excluded from international processes of climate governance and climate finance,” Brooks said of the Sahrawi.

      • Opinion | How to Fix the Climate Finance Debacle

        The United Nations Climate Change Conference in Glasgow (COP26) fell far short of what is needed for a safe planet, owing mainly to the same lack of trust that has burdened global climate negotiations for almost three decades. Developing countries regard climate change as a crisis caused largely by the rich countries, which they also view as shirking their historical and ongoing responsibility for the crisis. Worried that they will be left paying the bills, many key developing countries, such as India, don’t much care to negotiate or strategize.

      • Opinion | Moving the Renewables Revolution From Catchphrase to Reality

        As this issue of the Bulletin was published, the countries of the world had just finished meeting at COP26 in Glasgow, Scotland, to put forward new targets for reductions in global greenhouse gas emissions, aiming to reach a global “net zero” level by mid-century. The meeting and the national commitments to be made there are important, if the world is to avert the worst effects of climate change. Even more important, though, are practical implementations of those commitments, so they actually create the massive, real-world transition of global energy systems needed to move the world away from fossil fuels and toward energy sources that do not emit carbon dioxide.

      • Energy

        • Scientists Warn Experimental Nuclear Plant Backed by Bill Gates Is ‘Outright Dangerous’

          Officials announced Tuesday that the small city of Kemmerer, Wyoming would be the site of a new Bill Gates-backed nuclear power project—an initiative whose proponents say would provide climate-friendly and affordable energy but which some scientists warn is a dangerous diversion from true energy solutions.

          “Gates has continually downplayed the role of proven, safe renewable energy technology in decarbonizing our economy.”

        • ‘A Slap in the Face’: Biden Oil and Gas Lease Sale Ignites Outrage, Legal Challenges

          “This will inevitably lead to more catastrophic oil spills, more toxic climate pollution, and more suffering for communities and wildlife along the Gulf Coast.”

        • ‘The Time Is Now’: 200 Activists Arrested While Demanding Biden, Congress Defend Voting Rights

          Activists on Wednesday took to the streets of Washington, D.C., where organizers said around 200 people were arrested while demanding the passage of key voting rights legislation, an end to the filibuster, and bold action from President Joe Biden in defense of an imperiled democracy.

          “This movement is about ensuring that the arc of the moral universe continues to bend toward justice.”

        • Two Climate Activists Halt Operations at World’s Largest Coal Port

          “In a system that only cares about money, non-violent blockading tactics that cause material disruption are the most effective and accessible means of wielding real power.”

        • Gasbagging in Glasgow: COP26 and Phasing Down Coal

          COP26, or the UN Climate Change Conference UK 2021, had a mission of “Uniting the world to tackle climate change.”  The tackling, however, fell rather short, though countries, in the main, were trying to sell the final understanding as a grand compromise of mature tidiness.  COP26 president Alok Sharma called the outcome “a fragile win”, the outcome of “hard work” and “great cooperation” from the parties.

          The Pact is a flurry of words, acknowledging, for instance “the importance of the best available science for effective climate action and policymaking.” Alarm and utmost concern is expressed by the parties at the fact “that human activities have caused around 1.1 °C of global warming to date and that impacts are already being felt in every region”. There is a stress on “the urgency of enhancing ambition and acting in relation to mitigation adaptation and finance in this critical decade to address gaps between current efforts and pathways in pursuit of the ultimate objective of the Convention and its long-term global goal”.

        • The $65B Prize

          Not so fast! I am assuming that the keys for Nakamoto’s wallets are inaccessible through death or loss. Thus Nakamoto cannot migrate the million Bitcoin they contain to wallets that use post-quantum cryptography. Thus the first person to control a “sufficiently large quantum computer” can break the encryption on Nakamoto’s wallets and transfer the million Bitcoin to a post-quantum wallet they own. Who is to know that this wasn’t Satoshi Nakamoto taking a sensible precaution? The miscreant can then enjoy the fruits of their labor by repaying the costs of development of their quantum computer, and buying the obligatory Lamborghini. These would take only a small fraction of the $65B, and would be seen as Nakamoto enjoying a well-deserved retirement.

        • Chris Dixon and Packy McCormick on the future of [cryptocurrencies]

          The year ahead will show that blockchains can support a lot more applications beyond money and finance. In 2022 decentralised services will chip away at big tech companies’ stranglehold on the internet. A cluster of new “web3” technologies, such as tokens, will dramatically improve the digital economics of creators, technologists and small businesses.

        • The World Is Failing To Rid Itself of Coal

          Coal is the most CO2-intensive of all fossil fuels, a relic from the early industrial era, a dark past. That’s also the view of environmentalists at COP26. They argue that the world needs to eliminate its reliance on coal as quickly as possible.

          But actions speak louder than words, and rather than moving away from coal, use of the fossil fuel continues to grow. Since 2000, global consumption has increased by more than 60 percent. And the boom shows few signs of abating. Climate crisis or not, coal is being burned as if there was no tomorrow.

        • Social media is ‘undermining our democracies’, US billionaire Frank McCourt warns

          In an interview with FRANCE 24 at the Paris Peace Forum, US billionaire Frank McCourt strongly criticised tech giants, saying social media is “undermining our democracies”. The owner of French football club Olympique de Marseille told us more about his Project Liberty plan. He has invested $100 million in the initiative, which he hopes will “transform the way the [Internet] works”.

        • San Francisco pushes ahead towards open-source voting program

          San Francisco is finally making some progress using open-source technology in voting machines, a long-stalled city project that advocates say could save taxpayer money, add security and give voters more transparency in elections.

          On Tuesday night, President Shamann Walton told the Board of Supervisors he is moving forward on plans for a pilot program to use open-source voting machines as soon as The City’s November 2022 elections.

        • Rupert Murdoch Criticizes Trump, Accuses Google, Facebook of Censoring Conservatives

          The 90-year-old media mogul also mentioned “collusion” between Facebook and Google alleged by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton in a December 2020 complaint. Paxton’s complaint alleged that both companies violated federal antitrust law by making a secret agreement to give each platform special privileges on their ad-buying systems. Google has denied the accusation.

      • Wildlife/Nature

        • To Save a Seabird, Scientists Must Restore Balance to an Island Ecosystem
        • What’s Driving Global Deforestation? Organized Crime, Beef, Soy, Palm Oil and Wood Products

          Tropical forests store enormous quantities of carbon and are home to at least two-thirds of the world’s living species, so deforestation has disastrous consequences for climate change and conservation. Trees absorb carbon dioxide as they grow, slowing its buildup in the atmosphere – but when they are burned or logged, they release their stored carbon, fueling further warming. Tropical forest loss generates nearly 50% more greenhouse gases than does the global transportation sector.

          At the 2021 U.N. conference on climate change in Glasgow, more than 100 world leaders pledged on Nov. 1 to halt deforestation by 2030. In the Declaration on Forests and Land Use, countries outlined their strategy, which focuses on supporting trade and development policies that promote sustainable production and consumption. Governments and private companies have pledged over US$19.2 billion to support these efforts.

    • Finance

      • On the Defense Spending Bill

        All this for an agency, the Department of Defense, that continues to have massive fraud and cost overruns year after year and is the only major government agency not to successfully complete an independent audit. Isn’t it strange how even as we end the longest war in our nation’s history concerns about the deficit and national debt seem to melt away under the influence of the powerful Military Industrial Complex?

        Further, it is likely that the Senate leadership will attach to the National Defense Authorization Act the so-called ‘competitiveness bill,’ which includes $52 billion in corporate welfare, with no strings attached, for a handful of extremely profitable microchip companies. This bill also contains a $10 billion handout to Jeff Bezos for space exploration.

      • How NYC Taxi Drivers Took on Predatory Lenders and Won

        On November 3, New York City reached an agreement with the New York Taxi Workers Alliance (NYTWA), the union fighting to relieve drivers of thousands of dollars in debt they owe for medallions, the physical permits to operate taxis. According to the NYTWA, the average debt owed on medallions by taxi drivers is $600,000.

        “Today marks a new dawn, a new beginning for a workforce that has struggled through so much crisis and loss,” said Bhairavi Desai, Executive Director of NYTWA, in a statement. “Today, we can say owner-drivers have won real debt relief and can begin to get their lives back. Drivers will no longer be at risk of losing their homes, and no longer be held captive to debt beyond their lifetime.”

      • The Last Progressive: Biden and Illusions of “Normalcy”

        Grinspan describes the period from the 1860s to 1900 as an “age of acrimony,” with the nation as a whole “embroiled in a generation-long, culturewide war over democracy.” Today, we find ourselves well into round two of that very war. But Grinspan urges his fellow citizens not to give up hope. A return to normalcy — boring perhaps, but tolerable — might well be right around the corner.

        Mark me down as skeptical.

      • The Build Back Better Act Can Level the Field for Single Parents

        There are many things to cheer regarding the Build Back Better Act’s transformational $400 billion investment in early care and education. The act would deliver meaningful relief to millions of families by establishing universal pre-K for 3- and 4-year-olds, capping child care costs for working- and middle-class families at 7 percent of household income, and raising the wages of a workforce dominated by women of color that is currently paid, on average, $12/hour.

      • Opinion | It Is Way Past Time for Postal Banking

        USPS has a public service mandate to provide a similar level of service to communities across the country regardless of local economic conditions. In addition to daily mail delivery to far-flung locations, the Postal Service maintains post offices even in low-income urban neighborhoods and small towns that lack other basic services. The Postal Service is able to fulfill its mission while keeping postage rates low due to economies of scale.

      • Emily Ratajkowski: “I’m Very Displeased With Capitalism”

        Already famous as a model, an influencer, and the owner of a fashion brand, Emily Ratajkowski is known to the world in such saturation that anything she says on the subject of her body will inevitably be read through the lens of her own self-commodification. Or so we might think. It’s not unlike the trap of capitalism that Ratajkowski tangles with in her debut essay collection, the mechanism that’s punished her as much as it’s allowed her to thrive: How can one enter into an economy with the freedom to both criticize and participate? There’s a hint of self-aware humor in all of this, as when Ratajkowski’s Instagram captions solemnly intone, “My Body is on sale now.”1

      • It’s No Surprise Our Water Infrastructure Is So Bad

        Think of it this way: What we don’t know will hurt us. And water—yes, water—is an example of just that. Even at a time of such angry political disputes, you might imagine that, in a wealthy country like the United States, it would still be possible to agree that clean water should be not just a right, but a given. Well, welcome to America 2021.

      • ‘If You Care About Inflation,’ Says Jayapal, ‘Then Pass the Build Back Better Act’

        Rep. Pramila Jayapal, the chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, argued Wednesday that those who claim to be concerned about inflationary pressures in the U.S. economy should prioritize swift passage of the Build Back Better Act, which contains measures aimed at driving down prices in housing, medicine, child care, and other crucial areas.

        “There is no good way to connect the dots between the Build Back Better agenda… and higher inflation.”

      • ‘Inappropriate Giveaway of Galactic Proportions’: Outrage Over $10 Billion Taxpayer Gift to Bezos Space Obsession

        Progressives on Wednesday slammed what they called a proposed $10 billion handout to Amazon founder Jeff Bezos—the world’s first multi-centibillionaire—in the 2022 National Defense Authorization Act as a “giveaway of galactic proportions” in the face of growing wealth inequality and the inability of U.S. lawmakers to pass a sweeping social and climate spending package.

        “Jeff Bezos’s business model includes feasting on public subsidies—and the U.S. Senate must not acquiesce to his demands.”

      • $285 Billion Tax Cut for the Rich Is Now 2nd Most Expensive Piece of Build Back Better

        A $285 billion tax cut that would predominantly flow to rich households is now the second most expensive component of the Build Back Better Act after corporate Democrats succeeded in slashing funding for a number of key progressive priorities—and removing other programs entirely.

        “At a time of massive income inequality, we must increase taxes on the 1%, not give them huge tax breaks.”

      • GOP Representative Brags About Infrastructure Funding Despite Voting Against It
      • $285 Billion Tax Cut for Rich Is Now Second-Costliest Item of Build Back Better
      • Why It’s So Hard to Tax Billionaires

        Billionaires have the best accountants who know all the loopholes. Their wealth isn’t in income, but in assets. They often move to states (like Texas) that don’t have a state income tax, and move their money to offshore tax havens. They live off tax free loans. Legislation to tax billionaires goes nowhere because wealthy coal barons like Democratic Senator Joe Manchin don’t believe in taxing the “job creators,” a notion that has been debunked again and again. (Basically a thriving middle class creates jobs, while billionaires invest their profits in real estate.)

        What NPR didn’t say, and what the corporate and corporate-sponsored media never say, is that it is hard to tax billionaires because billionaires rule America and they don’t want to be taxed.

      • Indian PM calls on the world to save youth from Bitcoin

        India’s prime minister has called for international co-operation to regulate cryptocurrency.

        Speaking at The Sydney Dialogue, an online event hosted today by defence and strategic policy think tank the Australian Strategic Policy Institute, Modi lauded India’s technology sector for helping to address the Y2K problem, creating value through its vigorous start-up scene, improving the lives of citizens, and open-sourcing the Co-WIN COVID-19 management application. The PM also offered an optimistic view that technology will improve the world.

        But he adopted a different stance when discussing a few technologies and developments in the technology industry.

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • John McEvoy Exposes Britain’s Role in Suppressing Democracy at Home and Abroad
      • There’s Still More to Learn From Virginia

        Unsurprisingly, there has been a burst of commentary since Democrats suffered a slew of disappointing losses in Virginia during this month’s off-year elections—most of it not even from people who have lived or worked in politics here. Their response has been predictable: Terry McAuliffe lost because he didn’t talk to swing or moderate voters in the suburbs, which has always been code for white voters. But in fact it was the long tradition of the Democratic Party taking its base support for granted that led to losses up and down the ticket.

      • GOP Billionaires Who Never Donated to Democrats Are Funding Manchin and Sinema
      • Michigan GOP’s Voter Restrictions Could Eliminate 20 Percent of Polling Sites
      • Ari Berman: With Extreme Gerrymandering, the Republicans Are Rigging the Next Decade of Elections

        Republicans are set to claim the House majority in next year’s midterm elections with help from heavily gerrymandered congressional district maps in states nationwide that could shape politics for the next decade, securing Republican wins even as the party’s popular vote shrinks at the national level, says Mother Jones reporter Ari Berman. “The same states that are pushing voter suppression are also pushing extreme gerrymandered maps to lock in white Republican power for the next decade at the state and federal level,” says Berman.

      • House Votes to Censure Paul Gosar Over Video Depicting Him Killing Ocasio-Cortez
      • Censure ‘Not Enough’: Rights Groups Call For Expulsion of Gosar After House Vote

        “Censure is important but not enough,” said a leader at women’s rights group UltraViolet on Wednesday after the U.S. House of Representatives voted to censure Rep. Paul Gosar over an animated video he posted depicting the murder of Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and violence against President Joe Biden.

        “Anyone who shares content of themselves murdering a coworker on social media would be fired without hesitation in any other workplace,” said Bridget Todd, communications director at UltraViolet. “There should be no difference in Congress.”

      • Rep. Gosar Faces Censure for AOC Murder Video, Refuses to Apologize. Sister Calls Him a “Sociopath.”

        We speak with Jennifer Gosar, the youngest sister of far-right Arizona Congressmember Paul Gosar, who faces censure in a House vote today for posting an animated video on social media that features him murdering Congressmember Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and attacking President Biden with swords. Gosar will be required to stand in the well of the House while the resolution is read. His colleagues will also vote to strip him of his assignments on the Committee on Oversight and Reform, alongside Ocasio-Cortez, and the Committee on Natural Resources. “He’s continuing to sing to that white supremacist base that he fundraises from,” says Jennifer Gosar, who has previously described him as a “sociopath.”

      • Thrusting Boris, “The UK is Not Remotely a Corrupt Country”

        The first currently visible sign of this crisis emerged with the so-called Paterson affair. The House of Commons Committee on Standards, consisting of cross-party MPs and members of the public, upheld findings by the independent Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards of the House of Commons that the former Tory minister Owen Paterson, by lobbying ministers as a paid consultant for 2 private companies, had been in deliberate breach of the rules prohibiting MPs from using their elected office for financial gain.

        The Committee on Standards recommended that the Commons vote to impose a 30-day suspension on the always unrepentant Paterson. At this point the government intervened in what should have been a free vote to require Tory MPs to vote to overturn the Committee’s recommendation on Paterson and back an amendment to “reform” MP’s standards by creating a new Standards Committee with a built-in Tory majority. There were reports of threats to Tory MPs that they would lose funding for their constituencies if they failed to support the government.

    • Misinformation/Disinformation

      • Young people more likely to rely on social media, though few trust it ‘a lot’: poll

        Overall, 45 percent of young people ages 15 to 24 said social media is a “go-to” information source, while just 17 percent of those ages 40 and older said the same, according to the survey. The findings were based on survey responses from people in 21 countries.

      • You Can’t Beat Climate Change Without Tackling Disinformation

        Climate disinfo, unfortunately, did not make its way into the COP26 negotiations. Had the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change reports included contributions from social scientists on the role of media and information in tackling climate before the conference instead of next year, as they’re scheduled to be, perhaps that would have been different. In the lead-up to the event, though, Google did announce a new policy aimed at addressing this problem. In partnership with the Conscious Advertising Network, the tech giant said that it will now “prohibit ads for, and monetization of, content that contradicts well-established scientific consensus around the existence and causes of climate change.” That policy doesn’t just affect Google advertisers but YouTube creators as well, which is a big deal given that YouTube has been pushing climate disinformation to millions of viewers for years.

      • Wikipedia editor ‘warriors’ fight lies, bigotry and even Nazis

        Najjar said he contributes to almost 500 entries a week, and as a medical doctor he has been busy fighting a flood of false information unleashed during the pandemic.

      • Bipartisan commission urges US take immediate steps to curb online misinformation

        A report from a bipartisan commission published Monday recommends that U.S. government and social media platform leaders take a series of immediate steps to curb the “crisis of trust and truth” stemming from online disinformation and misinformation.

        The report, put out by the Aspen Institute’s Commission on Information Disorder, puts forward recommendations that can be taken to address issues including election security and COVID-19 disinformation and misinformation online, painting a picture of an urgent moment to take action.

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • Wherein The Copia Institute Tells The Eleventh Circuit That Florida’s SB 7072 Law Violates Our Rights

        We’ve talked a lot about the Florida law SB 7072 that attempts to regulate social media platforms. In broad strokes, it tries to constrain how at least certain Internet platforms moderate their platforms by imposing specific requirements on them about how they must or may not do so. That law is now being challenged in court. The district court enjoined it, and Florida has now appealed to the Eleventh Circuit to have the injunction overturned. This week the Copia Institute joined others in filing amicus briefs in support of maintaining the injunction.

      • Content Moderation Case Study: Game Developer Deals With Sexual Content Generated By Users And Its Own AI (2021)

        Summary: Dealing with content moderation involving user generated content from humans is already quite tricky — but those challenges can reach a different level when artificial intelligence is generating content as well. While the cautionary tale of Microsoft’s AI chatbot Tay may be well known, other developers are still grappling with the challenges of moderating AI-generated content.

      • A New Tool to Measure Internet Resilience—Why It Matters

        Many low-income countries usually have under-provisioned networks and cable infrastructure, or they lack redundant interconnection systems. In these countries (or regions), the likelihood of Internet outages occurring is much higher than in other countries. To help support the development of policies and infrastructure to improve Internet resilience at the local, regional, and global level, we’ve launched a new section on our Internet measurement platform, Pulse, to track resiliency metrics.

      • Peng Shuai: Doubt cast on email from Chinese tennis star

        Ms Peng – a former number one-ranked tennis doubles player – had not been heard from since posting an allegation about former Vice Premier Zhang Gaoli on Chinese social media site Weibo in early November.

      • China’s ultramarathon tragedy and the survivors threatened for speaking out

        In May this year, 21 competitors died at an ultra-running event in northern China hit by extreme weather conditions: hail, heavy rain and intense gales caused temperatures to plummet, and nobody seemed prepared for it.

        Only a small number felt comfortable talking about what happened – and some have been threatened for doing so.

    • Freedom of Information/Freedom of the Press

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • Diversifying the Police Force Won’t End Police Violence
      • Opinion | The End of Legal Abortion Looms

        For supporters of abortion rights, the stakes could not be higher than they are this term at U.S. Supreme Court. With conservatives holding a 6-3 advantage on the bench, Roe v. Wade is on the chopping block. 

      • The Secrets of the So-Called “Havana Syndrome”

        Behind closed doors and with little fanfare, on October 8, President Joe Biden signed the Helping American Victims Afflicted by Neurological Attacks Act into law. Known as the “Havana Act”—a misnomer since most of the purported “attacks” took place far from Cuba—the legislation authorizes the Central Intelligence Agency and the State Department to compensate a growing number of agents and diplomats who have experienced a cluster of cognitive-related injuries from a mysterious, and still unidentified, source. The impetus for the new law came from complaints by a number of injured US personnel that their own government, particularly during the Donald Trump era, has been dismissive of their medical needs and the legitimacy of their injuries.1

        “We’re not making this up—this happened to real people,” one injured Havana embassy official stated in a dramatic interview with NBC News in October. “It just seems important to humanize this,” another told NBC, “to help all my fellow Americans understand that, as much skepticism as still seems to surround this, it’s very real.”2

      • Judge Allows Rittenhouse to Eliminate Jury Members Using a Raffle Drum
      • Rittenhouse
      • US Officials Outrageously Claim Black Men Fleeing Slavery Lack “Credible Fear”
      • Advocates Demand Stay of Execution for Julius Jones in Oklahoma
      • With ‘Powerful Evidence’ of His Innocence, Advocates Demand Clemency for Julius Jones Ahead of Thursday Execution

        Noting that Oklahoma’s Pardon and Parole Board has twice recommended clemency for condemned inmate Julius Jones, calls from millions of people around the world and across the political spectrum—including from capital punishment supporters—for Gov. Kevin Stitt to commute Jones’ death sentence have crescendoed ahead of Thursday’s scheduled execution.

        “Gov. Stitt needs to be a moral leader for his state and stop this execution.”

      • “No Doubt That Julius Jones Is innocent”: Supporters Demand Stay of Execution for Oklahoma Man

        Advocates in Oklahoma are rallying outside the barricaded governor’s mansion ahead of the planned Thursday execution of prisoner Julius Jones, who was convicted of a 1999 murder but has maintained his innocence. Another man privately admitted to committing the murder and framing Jones, and Oklahoma’s Pardon and Parole Board has recommended twice that his death sentence be commuted to life in prison with the possibility of parole but the final decision now rests with Governor Kevin Stitt. “There should be no doubt that Julius Jones is innocent,” says longtime death penalty opponent Ben Jealous, president of People for the American Way and former president of the NAACP.

      • Media’s Anti-‘Woke’ Mania Moves Social Justice to the Fringe

        “Woke” is the label the aggrieved conservative suburbanite puts on the indignity of having to call their Starbucks barista “they” and finding Ibram X. Kendi on their child’s school reading list. But as the Democrats prepare for the midterm election cycle, anti-wokeness has become a key theme about the party’s future. Woke activists have been chief culprits in Terry McAuliffe’s loss in the Virginia governor’s race, correspondents tell us, and the electoral ground loss generally by the Democrats (The Hill, 11/7/21).

      • Amnesty International calls to ban discriminatory algorithms in its report Xenophobic Machines

        On 25 October 2021, Amnesty International published a report on the use of algorithmic decision-making (ADM) system by the Dutch tax authorities to detect fraud. The report shows how discrimination and racial profiling were baked into the design of the ADM system. Tens of thousands of parents and caregivers from mostly low-income families and immigrant backgrounds were falsely accused of fraud. While the Dutch government has announced a number of safeguards to prevent similar human rights violations from happening in the future, Amnesty’s analysis of these safeguards shows that they fall short on all fronts.

      • Desperate Afghans forced to sell children

        The human toll of spiraling hostilities still remains immense in Afghanistan. The UN is particularly worried about the impact of the conflict on women and girls. Some 80% of nearly a quarter of a million Afghans forced to flee since the end of May are women and children.

        According to the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), from January 1 this year to October 18, 667,903 individuals fled their homes due to conflict. A total of 33 out of 34 provinces had recorded some level of forced displacement.

      • Biden proposes 20-year drilling ban near sacred Indigenous site

        Indigenous tribes have fought for years to protect Chaco Canyon, one of the oldest and most culturally important native sites in the United States, from the oil and gas industry. Located in the high desert of northwest New Mexico, the historical site served as a hub for ceremony, politics, and trade from the ninth to 13th centuries. Today, the 1,000-year-old stone structures still stand.

      • Protect Voting Rights Now! MLK’s Granddaughter, Ben Jealous & More Risk Arrest at White House Protest

        Republicans may retake control of the House next year thanks largely to extreme gerrymandering by Republican state legislators, even as Republican opposition in Congress has impeded critical legislation to combat discriminatory voting practices and eliminate barriers to the ballot. As pressure grows for Democrats to pass two key voting rights bills, activists are holding the last in a series of protests at the White House, where nearly 100 have been arrested since August, including Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr’s 13-year-old granddaughter Yolanda King. “States are suppressing the vote across the South, across the Midwest, even out in the far West, and there’s only one way to stop it,” says Ben Jealous, president of People for the American Way and former president of the NAACP. “Congress has to pass urgently needed federal voting rights bills now.”

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

      • Labor offers 30,000 homes without Internet free service for year

        In a tweet, Opposition Leader Anthony Albanese said: “Labor will provide a year of free broadband access for up to 30,000 families with no internet at home.”

        He did not offer any further details. The statement comes a day after Albanese said the party would, if elected, provide $2.4 billion to extend fibre to an additional 1.5 million homes over and above those which the Coalition has promised to wire.

    • Digital Restrictions (DRM)

      • In Big Shift For Apple, Company Makes It Easier For Users To Repair Phones

        We had just got done noting that it didn’t seem like Apple had learned a whole lot from the last few years of “right to repair” backlash, making it harder to replace iPhone 13 screens. But not only did the company (partially) backtrack from that decision, they’ve made another shocking pivot: they’re actually making phone parts and documentation more accessible to Apple customers. The move, announced in a company press release, should make it significantly easier for Apple customers to repair their devices at home:

    • Monopolies

      • Jeff Bewkes Blames AT&T Incompetence For Bungled Time Warner, HBO Mergers

        We’ve noted more than a few times how the AT&T Time Warner and DirecTV mergers were a monumental, historical disaster. AT&T spent $200 billion to acquire both companies thinking it would dominate the video and internet ad space. Instead, the company lost 9 million subscribers in nine years, fired 50,000 employees, closed numerous popular brands (DC’s Vertigo imprint, Mad Magazine), and basically stumbled around incompetently for several years before recently spinning off the entire mess for a song.

      • Media Spends Years Insisting Facebook Makes Society Worse; Then Trumpets A Poll Saying People Think Facebook Makes Society Worse

        It still is amazing to me how many people in the more traditional media insist that social media is bad and dangerous and infecting people’s brains with misinformation… but who don’t seem to recognize that every single such claim made about Facebook applies equally to their own media houses. Take, for example, CNN. Last week it excitedly blasted out the results of a poll that showed three fourths of adults believe Facebook is making society worse.

      • Patents

        • ‘Obscene’: Pfizer, BioNTech, and Moderna Are Raking in $3.9 Million in Profits Per Hour

          Moderna, Pfizer, and BioNTech—the makers of the two most successful coronavirus vaccines—are raking in a combined $65,000 in profits every minute as they refuse to share their manufacturing recipes with developing countries, where billions of people still lack access to lifesaving shots.

          According to a new People’s Vaccine Alliance analysis of recent earnings reports, the three pharmaceutical giants have made a total of $34 billion in profits this year, which amounts to roughly $1,083 per second, $64,961 per minute, or $3.9 million per hour.

      • Trademarks

        • Maori tribe condemns use of haka by anti-vax protesters in New Zealand

          The Ngati Toa, a tribe or iwi in Maori, is recognised under New Zealand law as the cultural guardian of the Ka Mate haka, which has featured prominently at recent protests against coronavirus-related restrictions.

          “Ngati Toa condemns the use of the Ka Mate haka to push and promote anti-Covid-19-vaccination messages,” the tribe, based just outside Wellington, said in a statement.

          “We insist that protesters stop using our taonga (cultural treasure) immediately.”

        • Streamlabs will drop ‘OBS’ name after getting called out by open-source app

          OBS also claims it was approached by Streamlabs when the service first launched and asked if it could use “OBS” in its name. OBS says it “kindly asked them not to,” but Streamlabs still used the name anyway. “We’ve tried to sort this out in private and they have been uncooperative at every turn,” OBS’s tweet says. OBS acknowledges that Streamlabs did everything right legally but instead “repeatedly disregarded the spirit of open source and of giving back.”

        • Streamlabs under fire from rival software owners and streamers following release of new product

          The Lightstream tweet was later shared by OBS, the provider of open source software for video recording and live streaming. While OBS came first, Streamlabs took the name for their main Streamlabs OBS product (SLOBS).

          “Near the launch of SLOBS, @streamlabs reached out to us about using the OBS name. We kindly asked them not to. They did so anyway and followed up by filing a trademark,” reads the OBS tweet.

          “We’ve tried to sort this out in private and they have been uncooperative at every turn.”

        • Streamlabs accused of plagiarism and ‘unethical’ business practices (updated)

          Update: Streamlabs has made a formal statement on Twitter, pledging to change the name of its product.

          “We are taking immediate action to remove OBS from our name,” reads the comment. “Streamlabs OBS is built on top of the OBS open-source platform; Streamlabs OBS is also open source, and our code is publicly available. We take responsibility for our actions and will support the community.”

        • Streamlabs accused of copying material for its console streaming platform

          That’s only the start of the accusations, however. OBS complained that Streamlabs used OBS as part of its broadcasting software name (Streamlabs OBS, or SLOBS) despite being asked not to. While Streamlabs has technically honored the terms of the GPL license used for OBS, it allegedly “disregarded the spirit” of open source software. Elgato, meanwhile, even implied Streamlabs’ Stream Deck was borrowing at least the name (if not features) from its Stream Deck Mobile app.

        • Streamlabs drops ‘OBS’ from company name in response to recent controversy

          For those unfamiliar, Streamlabs OBS is a free open-source software that makes streaming more user-friendly. Its software is built off of a different open-source software called OBS (Open Broadcaster Software), which came before it. A way to think about it is that Streamlabs OBS is a newer, shinier version of OBS that is easier to use. But the name wasn’t the only issue facing the company.

      • Copyrights

        • Take-Two, Rockstar Continue DMCA Blitzing Mods And Save Games For GTA

          Usually when a company does something that results in a public backlash, that company will stop digging holes. Over the summer, we wrote about Rockstar Games and its parent company, Take-Two Interactive, starting a war on modding communities for the Grand Theft Auto series. After years of largely leaving the modding community alone, these companies suddenly started targeting mods that were chiefly designed to put content or locations for older GTA games into GTA5. While the public was left to speculate as to why Take-Two and Rockstar were doing this, the theory that perhaps it meant they were planning to release remastered versions of older games eventually turned out to be true when GTA Trilogy was announced. In other words, these companies were happy to reap all the benefits of an active modding community right up to the point where they thought they could make more money through a re-release, at which point the war began.

        • DISH Wins $31m Judgment & Injunction Against Pirate IPTV Service & Resellers

          In March, pirate IPTV provider ChitramTV was hit with a large copyright infringement lawsuit by DISH Network. This week a Texas court handed down a $31m judgment and a broad injunction that requires ChitramTV and resellers to cease-and-desist, third-party server companies to terminate services, and registries and registrars to disable domains. Even then, the case is still not quite over.

        • Miramax Sues Tarantino for Copyright Infringement Over “Pulp Fiction” NFT Sale

          Miramax is suing director Quentin Tarantino over his plans to sell exclusive Pulp Fiction NFTs, which could be worth millions of dollars. The movie studio argues that it holds the rights to sell NFTs. Tarantino stands accused of copyright and trademark infringement as well as breach of contract, for which Miramax requests damages.

IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, November 17, 2021

Posted in IRC Logs at 2:17 am by Needs Sunlight

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