Links 22/11/2021: EasyOS Dunfell 3.1.11, Microsoft ‘Extends’ Mesa for Windows

Posted in News Roundup at 6:48 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Audiocasts/Shows

    • Kernel Space

      • ASpeed Preparing AST2600 DisplayPort Support – Phoronix

        Going back two years already ASpeed developers have been working on prepping AST2600 support for Linux, their seventh generation server management processor / BMC. The latest open-source driver activity points to the AST2600 having DisplayPort support.

        The AST2600 is the successor to the widely-used AST2500. The AST2600 makes its claim of being the world’s first BMC SoC on a 28nm process and is powered by a dual-core Arm Cortex A7.

      • Linux 5.17 To Allow Setting Custom Fan Curves For ASUS ROG Laptops – Phoronix

        The Linux kernel continues to see improvements around ASUS laptop support on Linux, but the contributions have not been coming directly from the company but rather the community and sometimes after reverse-engineering.

        The ASUS-WMI driver has seen a great deal of work recently in the Linux kernel for improving the device support particularly with the higher-end ASUS laptops. There has been dGPU toggling, panel overdrive, platform profile support, and more. Much of this work has come thanks to Linux kernel developer Luke Jones.

      • Intel’s IWD 1.20 Released – Phoronix

        IWD as the Intel-developed iNet Wireless Daemon that can serve as a replacement to the likes of WPA_Supplicant while integrating nicely with NetworkManager / systemd-networkd / ConnMan is out with a new version.

      • Linux 5.15.4
        I'm announcing the release of the 5.15.4 kernel.
        All users of the 5.15 kernel series must upgrade.
        The updated 5.15.y git tree can be found at:
        	git://git.kernel.org/pub/scm/linux/kernel/git/stable/linux-stable.git linux-5.15.y
        and can be browsed at the normal kernel.org git web browser:
        greg k-h
      • Linux 5.14.21
      • Linux 5.10.81
      • Linux 5.4.161
      • Kernel prepatch 5.16-rc2 [LWN.net]

        The second 5.16 kernel prepatch is out for testing. “Nothing especially noteworthy stands out for the last week, it all felt pretty normal for a rc2 week”.

      • New Linux Patch Series Provides A Fresh Take On Intel Indirect Branch Tracking – Phoronix

        Last year with Intel “Tiger Lake” was the introduction of Control-Flow Enforcement Technology (CET) for helping fend off return/jump-oriented attacks and as part of CET is hardware Indirect Branch Tracking (IBT) support. There have been patch series working to implement CET’s IBT support but after having gone through 30 rounds of review and not being merged, a new take on it was submitted today.

        For months there has been work on supporting Intel Control-Flow Enforcement Technology’s Indirect Branch Tracking feature in the Linux kernel. The most recent revision of that I am aware of is the v30 patches sent out last August. But those patches were never merged nor even any Linux kernel mailing list comments to that revision.

      • The History of Linux

        AT&T was dropped from Multics. This led to the invention and implementation of the Unix OS in 1969. Unix was created by American Computer Science legends Kenneth Lane Thompson and Dennis MacAlistair Ritchie of AT&T Bell Labs. And the first version was released in 1970.

        2 years later they created C out of UNIX. And there comes the future base of many programming languages! C added portability and availability to UNIX and thus it became increasingly popular, widely adopted, modified, and copied by businesses and academic institutions across the globe. AT&T was the sole owner of the UNIX copyrights.

        American Programmer Richard Matthew Stallman began the GNU project to create a free UNIX-like operating system in 1983. He wrote GPL (GNU General Public License) as a part of his project. By the 1990s, there was enough software to build a complete operating system. However, Hurd, the GNU kernel couldn’t pull enough development work leaving GNU incomplete.

        In 1987, American-Dutch Professor Andrew S. Tanenbaum wrote UNIX-like system MINIX for academic use. The source code of MINIX was made available for everyone, however, MINIX couldn’t be either modified or redistributed. MINIX’s 16-bit architecture wasn’t well adapted to Intel’s increasingly popular 386 design for PCs. It became highly expensive for private users to use UNIX for Intel 386 personal computers.

        And this led to Linus Torvalds’ beginning of a new project. Later Linus Torvalds stated that if either 386BSD or GNU Hurd was available during his time, he wouldn’t be interested in writing his project.

      • Just because you can do it doesn’t mean you should: Install Linux on NTFS – on the same partition as Windows

        As alert folks of a cross-platform inclination will have noticed, Paragon’s NTFS driver was accepted into the Linux kernel, and was released as part of 5.15.

        This has had a consequence they probably didn’t consider, though: you can now boot Linux from an NTFS partition.

        But wait, there’s more. Since a Linux installation doesn’t use any of the same file or folder names in the root directory, you can even install them into the same partition as Windows.

        So far, the primary application of this horrifying hack is probably the entertainment to be obtained from reading the stricken comments on Github. However, the fœtid fertile imaginations of some of the commenters raised some valid reasons why. For example, if you have a company policy that forbids you from repartitioning your machine, you could obey the letter if not the spirit of the law and dual-boot this way.

      • Graphics Stack

        • Microsoft Working On Direct3D 12 Video Acceleration For Mesa – Phoronix

          Microsoft’s latest work in the area of open-source graphics drivers with the Mesa stack is for adding Direct3D 12 video acceleration support.

          As part of Microsoft’s continued work around supporting GUI applications with Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL2) and mapping Vulkan/OpenGL/OpenCL over Direct3D on Windows, Microsoft engineers are now working on adding Direct3D 12 video acceleration support to Mesa.

    • Applications

      • Pinta Image Editor Update Brings Feature Tweaks & Bug Fixes

        Pinta 1.7.1 is intended as the final update in the GTK2-based series, with a GTK3 build (dubbed Pinta 1.8) said to be nearly ready for release.

        Building on the feature set introduced in last year’s revival release Pinta 1.7.1 adds a couple of notable improvements…

      • Pinta 1.7.1 Paint and Editing Tool Released with Minor Improvements [Ed: Better to avoid it and use GIMP instead because this is Microsoft Mono]

        Pinta 1.7.1 has just been released delivering bug fixes along with some minor improvements. So let’s take a look what’s new.

      • Pinta Image Editor 1.7.1 Available For Download (Likely The Last GTK2 Release) [Ed: Do all these sites realise they're pushing Microsoft Mono when they promote Pinta? Promote Krita instead]

        Pinta, a free and open-source drawing and image editing program, has been updated to version 1.7.1, receiving a few new minor features / improvements, as well as quite a few bug fixes.

        Pinta is a Gtk# clone of the Paint.Net 3.0 Microsoft Windows application, which makes it easy to draw and manipulate images on Linux, macOS, Microsoft Windows and *BSD.

      • VirtualBox 6.1.30 Released with Initial Support for Linux Kernel 5.16, More Bug Fixes

        Coming just a month after VirtualBox 6.1.28, the VirtualBox 6.1.30 release is here to introduce initial support for the upcoming Linux 5.16 kernel series. This means that you can now run GNU/Linux distributions powered by Linux kernel 5.16 inside a virtual machine, as well as to install VirtualBox in a Linux 5.16-based distro.

      • Flatseal – Modern GNOME App to Change Flatpak App Permissions in Linux

        More and more apps today publish Linux packages as Flatpak. Though the run-time libraries take hundreds of megabytes disk space, some apps are really good and useful.

        If you have some apps installed as Flatpak in Ubuntu or other Linux like me, then Flatseal may be useful to protect your privacy by managing permissions in per app basis.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • How to Install Discourse on Ubuntu 20.04 | RoseHosting

        In this tutorial we are going to explain step-by-step instructions on How to install Discourse on Ubuntu 20.04 Also, we will provide you with some useful information about its usage.

        Discourse is an open-source platform used for discussions forum, chat rooms, or as a mailing list management software. It is written in Ruby on Rails as a backend language, Ember.js as a frontend, and uses PostgreSQL for data storage. It offers many features such as 2FA (Two-factor authentication), Spam blocking, Comprehensive API, Social Login and etc. Installing Discourse can be done manually with a couple of steps or in an isolated environment with Docker.

      • How To Install Nginx with Let’s Encrypt on RHEL 8

        Nginx’s popularity is not solely tied to its being an open-source web software application but also in its adaptation as a modular and high-performance server. These attributes make it an ideal candidate for a web server, load balancer or reverse proxy role.

        Nginx’s role as a web server makes it operable through port 80 and its primary directory for serving web files is /usr/share/nginx/html/ in RHEL 8 Linux.

      • How To Install VLC Player on AlmaLinux 8 – idroot

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install VLC Player on AlmaLinux 8. For those of you who didn’t know, VLC is a free and open-source cross-platform multimedia player and framework that plays most multimedia files as well as DVDs, Audio CDs, VCDs, and various streaming protocols. VLC is available on all operating systems such as Linux, Windows, Solaris, Android, OS X, Mac, and other operating systems that support VLC players.

        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 VLC Media Player on an AlmaLinux 8. You can follow the same instructions for CentOS and Rocky Linux.

      • How to Configure NAT on Ubuntu

        NAT or Network Address Translation allows multiple computers on a private network to share a common IP to access the Internet. One set of IP addresses is used inside the organization and the other set is used by it to present itself to the internet. This helps in conserving limited public IP space. At the same time, it also provides security by hiding the internal network from direct access from the outside world.

      • How to Do WordPress Malware Removal

        This tutorial explains how to remove malware from WordPress sites. After reading this article, you will know how to detect malicious codes in your site and how to remove them.

      • How to Install and Use Ack Command in Linux System

        Using the GREP command has been used widely among the Linux and Unix-like operating systems. It can find syntaxes, specific text, and many more inside a pile of codes or strings. Using the GREP command is not always worthy of finding specific values or of filtering some data-set from a file system or repository. The main use case of the Ack command in Linux gets highlighted when we need to run some repository-level commands for searching values and running queries.

        In Linux, you can easily use the GREP command on the terminal shell. You might be surprised to know that many power Linux users have already been using the Ack command to replace the GREP command. However, both GREP and Ack command function to output the same type of results, but they have their own individual pros and cons.

      • How to Install and Use pgAdmin 4 on Rocky Linux 8

        pgAdmin is a free and open-source graphical administration tool for PostgreSQL, one of the most advanced open-source databases. pgAdmin is a feature-rich PostgreSQL administration tool with a simple interface and easy to use. It supports PostgreSQL 9.6 and above, and it can be run on multiple operating systems, including Windows, macOS, and Linux.

      • How to Install Microsoft Teams on Linux Mint [Ed: It is technically malware, which ought not be installed]
      • How to Unzip a File on Linux Mint

        Today’s digital world heavily relies on file compression, and ZIP is one of the best applications to do this job efficiently. If you are planning to transfer your data to another device or if you are planning to email multiple files, then the ZIP utility can combine and compress that data to reduce the size, allowing them to deliver at quicker speeds.
        You can also UNZIP a zipped file, the data in it will remain in its original format. For instance, if you have received a ZIP file as an email attachment then how can you extract the data of that file in Linux Mint? This is where UNZIP comes in handy and you can use this utility to extract the data without any data loss. So, in this article, you will learn how you can compress a ZIP file and later UNZIP it on Linux Mint.

      • How to Use cURL for Command Line Data Transfer and More – Make Tech Easier

        If you’ve been following terminal-focused installation instructions for Linux applications for a while, you’ve probably come across the curl command at some point or another. cURL is a command-line tool for transferring data with URLs. One of the simplest uses is to download a file via the command line. This is deceptive, however, as cURL is an incredibly powerful tool that can do much more.

      • How to install Dropbox on Pop!_OS

        Dropbox provides cloud service to the users by using which they can not only manage their data by storing it on the cloud but also can share data with others by uploading it on the drive. An account on dropbox can be accessed through the browser. It also supports the application which can be installed on any operating system including the distributions of Linux.

      • How to install TeamViewer on Pop!_OS

        Teamviewer is an application that is used to operate computers remotely, it can be used for the maintenance of the computers, file sharing, managing a virtual meeting, and for the connection of the computer with some server. Teamviewer was launched in 2005 and can be operated on all operating systems like macOS, Windows, and all distributions of Linux including Pop!_OS, Ubuntu, and Debian.

        If two persons want to connect with each other, they can do so by installing the lightweight application Teamviewer on their computers, mobiles, or IoT devices and signing in with their login credentials of Teamviewer.

      • How to install and configure Flatpak on Ubuntu 20.04 –

        In this tutorial, we are going to learn how to install Flatpak on Ubuntu 20.04.

        Flatpak is a utility for software deployment and package management for Linux. Flatpak offers a sandbox environment in which users can run application software in isolation from the rest of the system.

        Flatpak can be used by all kinds of desktop environments and aims to be agnostic as possible regarding how applications are built.

      • How to install and configure MongoDB 5 on Debian 11

        In this guide we are going to learn how to install MongoDB 5.0 Community Edition on an Debian 11 server.

        MongoDB is a cross-platform document-oriented NoSQL database program that uses JSON-like documents with optional schemas. MongoDB is developed by MongoDB Inc. and licensed under the Server Side Public License.

        MongoDB was built for people building internet and business applications who need to evolve quickly and scale elegantly. Companies and development teams of all sizes use MongoDB for a wide variety of reasons.

        Instead of storing data in tables of rows or columns like SQL databases, each record in a MongoDB database is a document described in BSON, a binary representation of the data. Applications can then retrieve this information in a JSON format.

      • How to install and use Docker-ce on Fedora 35 – NextGenTips

        In this tutorial guide, we are going to learn how to install and use Docker-ce on Fedora 35.

        Docker is a set of platform as a service product that uses OS-level virtualization to deliver software in packages called containers. Containers are usually isolated from one another and bundled their own software libraries and configuration files, they can communicate with each other through well-defined channels.

        Docker makes it possible to get more apps running on the same old servers and also makes it easy to package and ship programs.

      • Cortex Installation Guide – Unixcop the Unix / Linux the admins deams

        In this post, you will learn the Cortex installation process.

      • How to install and configure MongoDB 5 on FreeBSD 13

        In this guide we are going to learn how to install MongoDB 5.0 Community Edition on a FreeBSD 13 server.

        MongoDB is a cross-platform document-oriented NoSQL database program that uses JSON-like documents with optional schemas. MongoDB is developed by MongoDB Inc. and licensed under the Server Side Public License.

        MongoDB was built for people building internet and business applications who need to evolve quickly and scale elegantly. Companies and development teams of all sizes use MongoDB for a wide variety of reasons.

        Instead of storing data in tables of rows or columns like SQL databases, each record in a MongoDB database is a document described in BSON, a binary representation of the data. Applications can then retrieve this information in a JSON format.

      • 7 Tips to create a database for beginners

        Learning to make and manage your own SQL database might sound like an insurmountable aim, but with the right guidance even beginners can make great progress.

        To get you started, here are just seven tips that will help you avoid common pitfalls and deal with frequently encountered issues that come with the territory of database administration.

      • How to install zoom on Manjaro Linux for video conferencing

        Zoom is a communication tool that enables you to set up video and audio conferencing, conduct virtual webinars, chats, and much more. Although the communication tools are not new (or zoom is not the only one), zoom has many distinct functionalities that other tools might not provide you.

        Zoom offers multiple variants ranging from basic to enterprise editions. The basic plan offers free access to perform several essential operations like you can conduct unlimited one-to-one meetings, a 40min video conferencing for unlimited participants. Whereas the other variants, Zoom Pro, Zoom business, and Zoom Enterprise, provide extensive package plans to enjoy the amazing features.

        Apart from these features, Zoom provides a cross-platform availability to get its functionalities on multiple operating systems. In this descriptive post, we are going to provide a detailed guide on how to install zoom on Manjaro Linux.

      • How to restart network services on Manjaro Linux

        Have you ever been caught up in a situation when the network services on your Manjaro Linux system stopped, and you were unable to connect to a server or a network? You would be amazed to know that, in a few seconds, you can solve these kinds of issues by restarting the network services.

        On Linux-based systems such as Manjaro, network services are a series of background applications that play their part in some specific events such as building a connection to the internet, moving files, and so on. In terms of computer networking, a network service is an application that operates on the network application layer and above; it also offers various valuable options such as data manipulation, storage, communication, and presentation.

        If you are facing any network issue or in case you have made changes in the network configuration files, then being a Manjaro user, you should restart the networking services for the changes to take effect. This write-up will demonstrate how to restart Network Services on Manjaro Linux using NetworkManager and Systemd-networkd. So, let’s start!

      • How to update Chrome on Manjaro Linux to latest version

        In this modern computing era, web browsers play a vital role in a computer user’s life. These tools act as a medium between a user and the internet. There are tens of browsers that are serving such as, Google Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Opera, Microsoft Edge, and so on. Several browsers have marked their place in trending slots, like Firefox, Safari, but Google Chrome outperforms all these.

        Google Chrome provides cross-platform support that also strengthens its user’s support, as various operating system users can avail it on their machine. The frequent updating mechanism of Google Chrome also distinguishes it from other browsers. In this piece of writing, we will provide the possible ways to update google chrome on Manjaro Linux.

      • How to update all packages in Manjaro Linux

        Manjaro is an Arch-based distribution of Linux and is equipped with all the basic features that a Linux distro has. Manjaro has extensive support to get packages either from its official repository or from AUR (Arch User Repository). The update of packages is recommended to carry out, as they bring new features, security patches, and bug fixes.

        The package manager is the key stakeholder in updating the packages of a Linux-based system. Like other distributions, Manjaro also uses a package manager named “Pacman“. The “Pacman” is used for all Arch-based distributions of Linux.

        Following the importance of the package update, we will demonstrate the possible ways to get packages updated on Manjaro Linux.

      • How to use SELECT TOP statement in MySQL

        The fast and reliable architecture of MySQL enhances its popularity among its competitors such as PostgreSQL. MySQL is a database management system that is used in the back-end of the website to store and manage the data of the website.

        MySQL is an RDMS that uses SQL as a query language, for this reason, most functions and clauses used in SQL can be executed in MySQL but it is not compulsory that every SQL query can be used in MySQL. The same is the case with a SELECT TOP clause which is used in SQL to display the top rows or to perform different operations on them and is not supported by MySQL. In this write-up, we will discuss what the SELECT TOP clause is? What happens if we use the SELECT TOP clause in MySQL? And What is the alternative of SELECT TOP in MySQL?

      • Install Ubuntu 20.04 | 22.04 Cloud Image (Minimal) on VirtualBox

        Do you want to run minimal Ubuntu 20.04 Cloud Image on VirtualBox? Then here is a simple and quick tutorial to do that…

        Ubuntu 20.04 LTS is the popular server and desktop Linux operating system, however, the standard image of it is around 1GB or more, which would not be a cup of tea forever body. Especially those who want to run Ubuntu to test some Linux server applications but without investing much hardware resources.

        Earlier there was minimal ISO image available by Ubuntu developers, however not after 18.04. Therefore, we have another option that is a cloud Image, available to use by cloud platforms. But we can use the same on VirtualBox and here are the simple steps to do that.

      • Install and Configure Logrotate on CentOS 8 – Unixcop the Unix / Linux the admins deams

        Logs are beneficial to collect information. They can be beneficial while troubleshooting an issue. Logs can also be a pain to deal with but they also are lifesavers while troubleshooting an issue. In this article we will Install and configure logrotate on CentOS 8.

      • What is a ZIP file

        The digital workplace relies heavily on file compression, and this is where ZIP files come in handy. They keep all of your data and files in one location and function similarly to normal folders on your computer. However, the contents of zipped files are compressed, reducing the amount of data needed by your computer that reduces the file size, making it easier to transmit or keep.

        So you’re looking at a ZIP file if the extension .ZIP or.zip appears at the end of the file name. In addition, the file’s icon would be changed. Suppose that if you have various audio files in the format of .mp3, then after making a zip file, those files will change their format to the .ZIP, and their icon will also change. After receiving a ZIP file, the recipient can unzip (or extract) it and utilize it in its original format.

      • What is a RAR file

        RAR is a short form of the Roshal Archive that you can use to organize multiple folders, documents, photos, and other data. However, what distinguishes a RAR file is that it takes special software to access its contents. It’s one of the most used methods for compressing data and supports both archiving and compression, so you may store numerous files within a single RAR file.

        Furthermore, RAR files can be encrypted and password-protected, which ensures that the contents of these files remain hidden until the password is known. In addition, a RAR file might be helpful if a colleague has a long list of images they want to share with you. Your buddy could aggregate all the photos into one RAR file and then send you that file, rather than having you download them individually. This guide can help unravel any doubts you may have regarding how to make and open a RAR file if you already didn’t know.

      • Benchmark Storage Drives in Linux with KDiskMark

        KDiskMark is a free and open source graphical benchmarking utility that can be used to measure performance of storage drives. It can determine read and write speed estimates with good accuracy for both hard drives and solid state drives. It can run benchmarks on external drives connected to your Linux system as well.

      • Ubuntu Add User to Group

        In Linux, groups are the entities used for the organization and management of numerous user accounts simultaneously. Groups offer easy and quick administration of user accounts. Various Linux users have many different task assignments and roles. The key point of groups is the identification of a set of rights like write, read or execute access for a specified resource that can be mutually shared among the group users.

        In this guide, we will discuss how many types of groups exist in the Ubuntu Linux system. Moreover, we will also elaborate on how to add a Ubuntu user into the groups.

      • 3 Ways to Change Hostname on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS Focal Fossa Linux

        In plain words, if we have multiple Linux computers in a network then to identify each of them using a custom name, we can generate hostnames, custom names generated by the user. Well, while setting up any OS, the hostname is usually set by it automatically depending upon the system. However, there are many scenarios where we need to set the one manually to easily identify the system over a network so that there will not be any kind of conflict relating to the hostname.

        Here we will learn a few easy methods to change the hostname on the popular Ubuntu 20.04 LTS focal fossa server or desktop OS.

      • Firefox cache grows too big

        In menu “Filesystem -> Easy Version Control”, I took a snapshot, and wondered why it was so big. I then chose to rollback to “pristine first bootup” and ticked the checkbox to save browser settings — that’s when I discovered what is wrong — the firefox cache is 1.1GB and that gets saved.

        So, it is not really a “pristine first bootup” if it is keeping the firefox cache.

    • Games

      • Two years on, Stadia seems to have no direction left

        What initially seemed like a really promising idea, to give you gaming on any device and wherever you are has turned into something of a let-down overall.

        This will no doubt get me some flak from Stadia stans, but let’s keep in mind I was originally totally sold on the idea of Stadia. I have a Founders pack and I used it almost daily for quite some time. That time quickly lessened, and eventually became none at all. I can’t imagine I am alone in that either.

        At the two year point, what did Google do to celebrate Stadia? Close to nothing. On Reddit the Stadia team went over some numbers we already knew like the amount of games available and a few that added special Stadia features.

      • Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory Single-Player mod is out now | GamingOnLinux

        While the actual single-player campaign of Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory never officially happened, a modder has now released their attempt to bring it back with Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory Single-Player.

        Originally the official game was going to be an expansion to Return to Castle Wolfenstein and a standalone game, however it was cancelled and then released as a free to play online game, that lives on as ET: Legacy. At least now we can see some of what it might have become! This mod takes the online maps and sticks them together, to turn them all into a connected single-player and co-op campaign.

      • ScummVM gets support for 1998 classic Sanitarium | GamingOnLinux

        Sanitarium, the popular point-and-click horror from 1998 is getting a fresh life thanks to the ScummVM project (announcement). An effort that is over 10 years in the making, the next major release of ScummVM will have support for it out of the box.

        “Sanitarium features a plot intricate set in an intense dark world where a very thin line separates senses from madness. There are many riddles to solve throughout this immersive and captivating adventure that will make your head spin with terror.

        Even now, Sanitarium is a masterwork suitable for point-and-click beginners, confirmed or riddle-solving experts who enjoy.”

      • Steam Client update adds CEG DRM support for Proton, VA-API hardware encoding | GamingOnLinux

        Valve have released the latest big update to the Steam client, after a good while of Beta versions bringing with it some major new features – especially on the Linux side. If you are opted into the Steam Client Beta, you will have already seen and probably used a bunch of what’s new but this is for everyone sticking with the main client.

        For fans of the Steam Play Proton compatibility layer, it’s the big one that brings with it support for CEG DRM, making many more games playable that weren’t previously. However, that currently needs you to use Proton Experimental, at least until Proton 6.3-8 rolls out (currently in testing).

      • The Humble Choose Wisely Bundle has some adventure treats | GamingOnLinux

        Ready for your next adventure? Looks like Humble Bundle has a reasonably nice set of games available in the Choose Wisely Bundle live now. Only two of the included games have a native Linux build, so as usual we shall let you know what to expect with Steam Play Proton for the others.

      • Combat-heavy turn-based 4x strategy game Punk Wars is out now | GamingOnLinux

        Punk Wars is combat-heavy turn-based 4x strategy game from Strategy Forge S.A. and Jujubee S.A. and it’s out now.

        “Punk Wars is a combat and tactics-oriented strategy drawing inspiration from the classic turn-based 4X titles. Set in a post-apocalyptic world, in which the ruins of a once powerful megacity become the arena for a deadly fight between four newly emerged corporations, trying to assert dominance for both their unique technology and philosophy of life.


        Punk Wars is available on Steam. The Linux version is not on the GOG store.

      • Total War: WARHAMMER III gets lots of improvements for battles | GamingOnLinux

        Creative Assembly look to really be going all-out for Total War: WARHAMMER III, with so many mechanics getting big improvements and recently they talked about battles with a new video.

        These are primarily quality of life improvements, aimed to making battles feel a little better to engage in overall so don’t go expecting anything too game-changing. Still, there’s a huge amount of tweaks that will be coming with it. Some of it includes a toggle to get flying units off the ground, idle unit hotkeys, better formation options taken from Three Kingdoms, new “lazy” health bars to indicate incoming damage, a full unit browser page, healing is now a percantage of max health per-second rather than a flat value and much more.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • Top 5 Distros for XFCE

        Linux is among the most well-known and easily accessible open-source operating systems. Because of its stability, portability, and customization, Linux has recently earned much attention and is now extensively being utilized. One of them is the desktop environment feature, which is mostly used for Linux-based operating systems, and Xfce is one of them.

        Xfce was originally stated as XForms Common Environment, an open-source desktop environment designed explicitly for Linux. It aspires to be quick and light while remaining aesthetically beautiful and simple to use. Because of its small size, it saves both memory and CPU, making it suited for older hosts with limited desktop resources. On the other hand, Xfce is versatile and powerful enough to meet system requirements as a power user. It offers a very reliable, feature-rich, and straightforward experience. This article will cover the top 5 distros for XFCE which we think you consider for your desktop environment experience.

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • KDE Plasma Developers Introduce a GNOME-Like Overview

          A new overview effect makes it easier for users to interact with both Plasma Activities and Virtual Desktops.

          KDE Plasma is a very user-friendly desktop interface found on several popular Linux distributions. But there are a couple of features that have needed some slight tweaking for a while. Those features are how users interact with both activities and virtual desktops.

          With the release of KDE Plasma 5.24, that all changes as both features are getting a rather GNOME-like makeover. A new overview screen will offer a full-screen view of both virtual desktops and all currently open applications. Along with these two features, a search bar will be included with the overview that allows users to find applications, files, browser tabs, documents, and more.

          Although this might require longtime users to have to adjust their workflows, if the implementation is as successful as what GNOME did with version 40, most will be quite happy with how efficient it is.

        • Cutefish OS 0.6 Beta Released with Lock Screen Controls, More Settings

          A new beta build of CutefishOS is available to download.

          While things aren’t quite “daily driver” ready (yet) the distro provides a quick and easy way to try the latest developments in the Qt-based Cutefish desktop environment on top of a familiar apt foundation. We looked at an Ubuntu-based offshoot a few months back.

    • Distributions

      • MX Linux 21 AHS Edition Is Out Now with Linux Kernel 5.14, Newer Graphics Stack

        MX Linux 21 “Wildflower” was officially released last month on October 21st as a systemd-free distribution based on the latest and greatest Debian GNU/Linux 11 “Bullseye” operating system series. The new release is available with the Xfce, KDE Plasma, and Fluxbox editions.

        Since it’s based on Debian GNU/Linux 11, MX Linux 21 is powered by the Linux 5.10 LTS kernel by default, but the developers made a special version for those who need to run MX Linux on their hardware with a newer kernel version, namely Linux kernel 5.14.

      • New Releases

      • BSD

        • NetBSD Project Report: Add support for chdir(2) support in posix_spawn(3)

          The primary goal of the project was to extend posix_spawn(3) to include chdir(2) for the newly created child process. Two functions were supposed to be implemented, namely posix_spawn_file_actions_addchdir() and posix_spawn_file_actions_addfchdir(), to support both chdir(2) and fchdir(2) respectively. posix_spawn() is a POSIX standard method responsible for creating and executing new child processes.

      • SUSE/OpenSUSE

        • STFC: Using Kubernetes to better understand climate change | SUSE Communities

          “The team at STFC were looking for a vendor-backed solution to help manage its Kubernetes estate. Working with SUSE Rancher, the Kubernetes architecture was easy to deploy, manage and scale.” Sheng Liang, President of Engineering and Innovation, SUSE.

        • Thank you, SUSE QE

          Some here might not know it, but some teams from the ‘SUSE Quality Engineering Linux Systems Group’ use the Redmine installation here at https://progress.opensuse.org/ to track the results of the test automation for openSUSE products. Especially openQA feature requests are tracked and coordinated here.

          As the plain Redmine installation does not provide all wanted features, we included the “Redmine Agile plugin” from RedmineUP since a while now. Luckily the free version of the plugin already provided nearly 90% of the requested additional features. So everybody was happy and we could run this service without problems. But today, we got some money to buy the PRO version of the plugin – which we happily did :-)

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • Use Fedora Server to send text messages and voice alerts

          This article will demonstrate how to configure Fedora Server as an alert and notification server that can place calls using an Asterisk PBX and send SMS text messages using Twilio. The use of the SMS message feature is optional. By using the call_only endpoint of the caller_prometheus_webhook component, you can limit the alerts to voice calls only.

          Please consider that interacting with the Asterisk PBX is not easy. But it isn’t too hard either. If this is your first time working with this kind of application, coming to understand the concepts may require some patience. Fortunately, Fedora Server can be configured with Ansible and the installation of the py-phone-caller containers will not be difficult.

        • Unifying teams and tools on the Red Hat OpenShift Data Science platform

          Red Hat OpenShift Data Science removes barriers between data engineers, data scientists, and application developers so organizations can realize the benefits of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning. Using this cloud service, organizations can experiment with open source and integrated technology partner software across the entire ML life cycle.

        • Access more data from your Jupyter notebook | Red Hat Developer

          This short, how-to video shows you how to access existing data sources from within your Jupyter notebooks using Starburst Galaxy, as implemented through Red Hat OpenShift Data Science. Red Hat Principal Architect Karl Eklund walks you through how to pull the data you need—without moving or duplicating it—into an OpenShift Data Science-powered Jupyter notebook.

        • Red Hat Ansible Automation Platform 2: Automating the Installer Download and publishing as a Content View in Satellite

          With the release of Red Hat Ansible Automation Platform 2, the installer download method has been centralized on the Customer Portal changing the requirements for an automated download.

          As automation is a must in modern IT, we can leverage the power from Ansible together with Red Hat Satellite to automate this process as well as facilitate the version control for larger environments.

          This sparked my interest in developing a solution for sysadmins and others who want to automate this process further using features available on Red Hat Satellite, such as Repository Management and Content Views.

        • Build and deploy an object detection model using OpenShift Data Science | Red Hat Developer

          In this three-part demo, Red Hat Principal Software Engineer Chris Chase uses Red Hat OpenShift Data Science to show how to build and deploy an object detection model within an intelligent application. Follow along with the tutorial using the workshop website: https://red.ht/rhods-od-workshop

          OpenShift Data Science is a comprehensive environment based in the Red Hat OpenShift cloud service. It integrates Jupyter notebooks with important model development frameworks such as TensorFlow and PyTorch, as well as key open source partner technologies.

          In this workshop, you’ll learn an easy way to incorporate data science and artificial intelligence/machine learning (AI/ML) into your Red Hat OpenShift development workflow and how to use an object detection model in several different ways.

        • How Red Hat OpenShift Data Science fits in your AI/ML journey

          Organizations are using Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning to improve the way they operate and deliver value to their customers. Red Hat OpenShift Data Science provides a model development environment delivered as a cloud service in combination with optional partner offerings to accelerate the time it takes to take a model from pilot to production.

        • Field Trial Release Of Red Hat OpenShift Data Science Adds Expanded Partner Support

          Red Hat has announced the availability of Red Hat OpenShift Data Science as a field trial, as well as an expanded partner ecosystem focused on this new cloud service offering. Red Hat OpenShift Data Science is a cloud service offering tailored for ML on Red Hat OpenShift. Enabled by Kubernetes operators, Red Hat OpenShift Data Science gives enterprises greater flexibility in selecting the technologies to develop, test and deploy ML models, while removing the overhead associated with running and maintaining a production platform.

        • IBM Announces 2021 Call For Code Global Challenge Winner

          Call for Code founding partner IBM and its creator, David Clark Cause, have announced the winner of the fourth annual Call for Code Global Challenge, which invited innovators across the globe to combat climate change with open source-powered technology. The top prize this year went to Saaf Water, an accessible water quality sensor and analytics platform created, in particular, for people living in rural localities.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Ubuntu Desktop Accessibility: Our VPAT Conformance Report

          Canonical is pleased to share that our latest Ubuntu Accessibility Conformance Report, International Edition is now available for download. Based on VPAT Version 2.4, This report covers Ubuntu Desktop Accessibility, with a focus on Ubuntu 18.04 LTS Desktop and Ubuntu 20.04 LTS Desktop.

        • Dell EMC PowerEdge and Canonical Charmed Ceph, a proven solution

          Here at Canonical, we have lots of industry partnerships where we work jointly, hand-in-hand, to produce the best possible outcomes for the open source community. From getting early access to next generation hardware to ensure Ubuntu is fully compatible when it’s released, to creating solution orientated reference architectures for products built on top of Ubuntu like Charmed Ceph, Canonical is committed to engineering the best possible computing experience.

          Recently, our product management and hardware alliances teams came together with Dell Technologies to collaboratively define, test, and validate a Dell EMC PowerEdge based Charmed Ceph reference architecture.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • The Apache Weekly News Round-up: week ending 19 November 2021

        Happy Friday, everyone. The Apache community has had another great week. Let’s review what we’ve been up to…

      • Take action to protect Open Source today [Ed: When you take money from Microsoft, which attacks "Open Source", and then urge others to "protect" Open Source... by giving you more money]

        Or renew your membership during our 2021 Membership Drive. Being an OSI member is a great way to directly support the mission of OSI while becoming more involved in open source community development and advocacy. You aren’t just helping one open source project—you’re helping all open source projects!

      • Events

        • Five Lessons from ‘All Things Open’ on Hosting In-Person Events During COVID – FOSS Force

          All Things Open 2021 wrapped up about a month ago, and as I look back two things stand out.

          First, overall things went well and the outcome was a good one.

          I have a tendency to initially focus only on what didn’t go as planned, but I often look back later and realize that the imperfections were far more insignificant than I originally thought, and the outcome far better.

          With 30 days now to review the 2021 event, the same pattern holds true this year. Yes, not everything went as planned, but it never does. On the whole, attendees, speakers, and partners genuinely seemed to enjoy themselves and get value from the experience in a variety of ways. I’d call that a success.

      • Productivity Software/LibreOffice/Calligra

        • Community Member Monday: Bayram Çiçek

          I think contributing to LibreOffice is both fun and sometimes challenging. When ‘fun’ and ‘challenge’ come together, it creates a great community, as LibreOffice does; and being a part of this community makes you more passionate and stronger. And that’s why I wanted to become a TDF member.

      • Public Services/Government

        • Linux replaces Windows in one German state’s bid for software independence

          When one thinks of business or government computing, Windows and Microsoft Office are typically the de-facto go-to. But that’s not the case anymore for the German state of Schleswig-Holstein, which is planning on converting its public sector machines to the Linux and Libre side of the force by 2026.

          This shift will involve around 25,000 PCs in total, as reported by the Document Foundation (additional figures can be found in Schleswig-Holstein’s plan documentation [via Heise]). The idea behind the change is that free and open-source software should be given priority. A benefit from moving to Linux and Libre is forecasted to be saving money on licensing costs, though there are expense complications to be considered in terms of the migration itself and the costs of operational infrastructure when conducting state business through Linux and other open-source software.

      • Programming/Development

        • NCF Group Announces OpenGitOps 1.0 Standards

          The Application Delivery Technical Advisory Group of the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF) recently announced version 1.0 of the OpenGitOps specification.

          The group has worked to define the core principles of GitOps, with the goal of formalizing the ideas that have developed around GitOps into “a single cohesive set of principles that would be easily digestible and repeatable by any organization.”

        • Jakub Steiner: Pixel Sites

          I’ve created a couple of minisites for key OS components, built using no frameworks, but plain CSS. Just having CSS grid and variables made it viable for me to avoid using frameworks recently. Having includes/imports one wouldn’t even need Jekyll.

        • Cross Compile to PinePhone with Clang
        • C++ Using std::cin

          There is a standard input-output stream header file used within the C++ language. This stream header has been used to get the input from the user and output it on the shell screen using the cin and cout statement within the code. The Standard “cin” statement will be used to get the standard input from the user at run time. The user enters some input and it will be saved to some variable. So, within this guide, we will be discussing the use of std::cin within the C++ code. So, make sure you have a g++ compiler configured within your Ubuntu 20.04 system.


          The standard input-output stream header file used within the C++ language is used to get the input from user and output it on the shell screen using the cin and cout statement within the code. In this article, we will be discussing the use of std::cin within the C++ code..

        • Python

          • Python Write String to File

            As we all know, Python provides different built-in functions for creating, reading, and writing text files. Python handles two types of files. The first one is normal text files and the second one is binary files (which are written in a binary language or the form of 0s and 1s). In the text file, lines are closed with a special character (\n) known as EOL. It stands for End of Line. On the other hand, a binary file does not contain any line terminator and the data is stored after changing it into machine comprehensible binary language.

            In this article, our focus point is to write strings to a file in Python. To write a string to a Python file, we first call the write() function on the text file object and then pass the string as a parameter to this write() function. In this quick tutorial, you will learn how to create a text file using a string, replace the original string with the new string, and display a list of strings in the text file using the for loop.

          • How to Import CSV to List Python

            A CSV is a (comma separated values) file in which data is in the form of a tabular. The extension of the CSV file is .csv. This csv file is mostly used in the data analytics. Apart from the data analytics, the CSV file also used in the e-commerce application because it’s very easy to handle in all different types of programming languages.

            We can convert the CSV to different data structures like a list, a list of tuples and a list of dictionaries. We can also save the CSV without the header or with the header as a list, and for that we can use some machine learning libraries like Pandas.

        • Shell/Bash/Zsh/Ksh

          • What is R String in Python?

            You may have heard and used many string variables within the programming language while coding. The Python R string i.e. Raw string is used as a prefixed lateral to consider some special characters i.e. backslash as a normal character or literal string. Within this article, we will see how R string can be used with strings to perform this specific task within the Ubuntu 20.04 system.

          • How to Use Special Variables in Bash

            Are you looking for a guide to using special variables in Bash? Get prepared! This article explains how and when to use special variables while working in Bash.

            In one of the previous articles, you learned about Bash variables. Bash comes with special variable features as well. They are used to control the Bash script’s execution flow. You can read their values but you can’t assign values to them. This article will take you through the usages of 9 different special variables used in Bash. So, let’s explore today’s topic on special Bash variables.

  • Leftovers

    • Science

      • Tomatoes Are Not Guncotton | Hackaday

        The video’s title claims that the tomatoes were turned into rocket fuel, which is far beyond the actual results of the experiment. However, with some more advanced chemical processing, we could certainly see the fruit becoming a mite more flammable than it was. You’re probably better off just sticking to straight cotton though, for the best results. Video after the break.

    • Health/Nutrition/Agriculture

      • Florida Gov. DeSantis signs legislation against Covid-19 mandates

        Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis on Thursday signed what he called “the strongest piece of legislation that’s been enacted anywhere in the country” in opposition to coronavirus vaccination mandates on workers.

        Flanked by Republican legislative leaders, DeSantis officially made Florida the first state with a law that imposes fines on businesses and hospitals that require inoculation against Covid-19 without exemptions or alternatives. DeSantis signed the legislative package into law a day after Republican lawmakers passed his anti-mandate agenda during a fast-moving special session that was largely divided along party lines.

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Security

          • Reminder for Critical Infrastructure to Stay Vigilant Against Threats During Holidays and Weekends | CISA

            As Americans prepare to hit the highways and airports this Thanksgiving holiday, CISA and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) are reminding critical infrastructure partners that malicious cyber actors aren’t making the same holiday plans as you. Recent history tells us that this could be a time when these persistent cyber actors halfway across the world are looking for ways—big and small—to disrupt the critical networks and systems belonging to organizations, businesses, and critical infrastructure.

            There are actions that executives, leaders, and workers in any organization can take proactively to protect themselves against cyberattacks, including possible ransomware attacks, during the upcoming holiday season—a time during which offices are often closed, and employees are home with their friends and families. Although neither CISA nor the FBI currently have identified any specific threats, recent 2021 trends show malicious cyber actors launching serious and impactful ransomware attacks during holidays and weekends, including Independence Day and Mother’s Day weekends.

          • Imunify360 Bug Leaves Linux Web Servers Open to Code Execution, Takeover | Threatpost [Ed: So-called 'security' as security hole]

            CloudLinux’s security platform for Linux-based websites and web servers contains a high-severity PHP deserialization bug.

            A high-severity security vulnerability in CloudLinux’s Imunify360 cybersecurity platform could lead to arbitrary code execution and web-server takeover, according to researchers.

          • Security updates for Monday

            Security updates have been issued by Debian (firebird3.0, libmodbus, and salt), Fedora (js-jquery-ui and wordpress), Mageia (arpwatch, chromium-browser-stable, php, rust, and wireshark), openSUSE (barrier, firefox, hylafax+, opera, postgresql12, postgresql13, postgresql14, and tomcat), SUSE (ardana-ansible, ardana-monasca, crowbar-openstack, influxdb, kibana, openstack-cinder, openstack-ec2-api, openstack-heat-gbp, openstack-heat-templates, openstack-horizon-plugin-gbp-ui, openstack-keystone, openstack-neutron-gbp, openstack-nova, python-eventlet, rubygem-redcarpet, rubygem-puma, ardana-ansible, ardana-monasca, documentation-suse-openstack-cloud, openstack-ec2-api, openstack-heat-templates, python-Django, python-monasca-common, rubygem-redcarpet, rubygem-puma, firefox, kernel, postgresql, postgresql13, postgresql14, postgresql10, postgresql12, postgresql13, postgresql14, postgresql96, and samba), and Ubuntu (libreoffice).

          • “Crypto” Means “Cryptography,” not “Cryptocurrency” – Schneier on Security

            I have long been annoyed that the word “crypto” has been co-opted by the blockchain people, and no longer refers to “cryptography.” I’m not the only one.

          • WAZUH Detecting and removing malware – Virus Total integration – Unixcop the Unix / Linux the admins deams

            VirusTotal is an online portal, owned by Google, that uses many antivirus engines to check for viruses and malware. It provides an API service that Wazuh uses to scan file hashes, domain names, IP addresses, or URLs. For this integration we use the wazuh-integratord component that runs on the Wazuh manager. Check our VirusTotal documentation for more information about this integration.

            In this use case, we monitor a directory in real time and do a VirusTotal scan to every new or recently modified file. If a file is classified as malicious, an active response is triggered and the file is removed.

          • Wazuh Blocking attacks with Active Response – Unixcop the Unix / Linux the admins deams

            Active response allows Wazuh to run commands on an agent in response to certain triggers. In this use case, we simulate an SSH Brute Force attack and configure an active response to block the IP of the attacker. So, in this post you will learn how blocking attacks with active response.

          • New Golang-based Linux Malware Targeting eCommerce Websites [Ed: This is not the fault of "Linux" or "Go"; it's a good example of FUD and misinformation with an agenda]

            Weaknesses in e-commerce portals are being exploited to deploy a Linux backdoor as well as a credit card skimmer that’s capable of stealing payment information from compromised websites.

            “The attacker started with automated e-commerce attack probes, testing for dozens of weaknesses in common online store platforms,” researchers from Sansec Threat Research said in an analysis. “After a day and a half, the attacker found a file upload vulnerability in one of the store’s plugins.” The name of the affected vendor was not revealed.

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • How the Modi government’s new IT rules jeopardise the right to privacy and free speech

              In February, the Modi government’s notification of Information Technology Rules was met with concern and criticism. There were demands for the withdrawal of the rules, primarily because of their negative impact on the right to privacy and freedom of expression and their overbroad scope. Several challenges against these rules are pending in various High Courts, and some of the interim orders issued indicate that these courts share concerns about the rules’ unconstitutionality.

              There has also been a lack of clarity on how key aspects of the rules are to be complied with, including, for example, which platforms need to comply with the requirement to trace the “first originator” of content.

              In early November, the government released “Frequently Asked Questions on Part-II of the IT Rules”, in an attempt to provide clarity and allay concerns. (Part II of the rules set out due diligence requirements, including traceability and establishes a grievance redressal mechanism. This part applies to intermediaries, and “significant social media intermediaries”, which are those with more than 50 lakh users).

              However, it arguably fails to allay concerns, and the limited clarity they offer is on certain procedural aspects relating to the appointment of compliance officers. The questions otherwise rehash old defences, for instance with respect to traceability, that does not substantively address concerns raised by civil society, tech companies and internet users.

Microsoft’s GitHub is Hugely Toxic and It Censors Critics of Corporations or People Sceptical of Those in Power

Posted in Deception, Microsoft at 1:55 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Video download link | md5sum 1fb2818cbcfeff3ef77819f9ea3d8302

Summary: Sociopaths have taken over GitHub and control over GitHub (by Microsoft) is being shamelessly misused, just as we’ve warned all along; GitHub is social control media/network for code, asserting control over projects and developers by means of censorship and other sanctions

THE above video highlights the abrasive nature of GitHub, where Microsoft can engage in overt racism without any consequences, wheres the powerless millions are being censored for merely mentioning a name.

Most the above video, however, discusses what we posted this morning [1, 2]. GitHub is an awful place socially; it is run by sociopaths and people who must never have any form of power over communities.

Incidentally, the Rust moderators have just resigned (all of them). They posted this statement 4 hours ago to say:

The entire moderation team resigns, effective immediately. This resignation is done in protest of the Core Team placing themselves unaccountable to anyone but themselves.

As a result of such structural unaccountability, we have been unable to enforce the Rust Code of Conduct to the standards the community expects of us and to the standards we hold ourselves to. To leave under these circumstances deeply pains us, and we apologize to all of those that we have let down. In recognition that we are out of options from the perspective of Rust Governance, we feel as though we have no course remaining to us but to step down and make this statement.

In so doing, we would offer a few suggestions to the community writ large:

- We suggest that Rust Team Members come to a consensus on a process for oversight over the Core Team. Currently, they are answerable only to themselves, which is a property unique to them in contrast to all other Rust teams.

- In the interest of not perpetuating unaccountability, we recommend that the replacement for the Mod Team be made by Rust Team Members not on the Core Team.

- We suggest that the future Mod Team, with advice from Rust Team Members, proactively decide how best to handle and discover unhealthy conflict among Rust Team Members. We suggest that the Mod Team work with the Foundation in obtaining resources for professional mediation.

- Additionally, while not related to this issue, based on our experience in moderation over the years, we suggest that the future Mod Team take special care to keep the team of a healthy size and diversity, to the extent possible. It is a thankless task, and we did not do our best to recruit new members. In this message, we have avoided airing specific grievances beyond unaccountability. We’ve chosen to maintain discretion and confidentiality. We recommend that the broader Rust community and the future Mod Team exercise extreme skepticism of any statements by the Core Team (or members thereof) claiming to illuminate the situation.

We are open to being contacted by Rust Team Members for advice or clarification.

The Rust Moderation Team (Andre, Andrew and Matthieu)

To repeat the key point: “The entire moderation team resigns, effective immediately. This resignation is done in protest of the Core Team placing themselves unaccountable to anyone but themselves.”

There’s that issue we’ve long warned about when it comes to Codes of Conduct (all of them). Maybe all that will be left of Rust is Microsoft/GAFAM, judging by the creeping wave of entryism we saw in the project over the past couple of years (prior to that we had supported Rust).

EPO Staff Engagement Survey Predates the Pandemic and Provides False Assumptions for EPO Policies or Policy-Setting

Posted in Deception, Europe, Patents at 1:31 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Video download link | md5sum d736d5047941eaa83cf697284810c746

Summary: The EPO ticks a box for “surveying the staff”, but is it actually listening? Is that done often enough? It was last done almost 3 years ago…

The Central Staff Committee (CSC) of the EPO wrote to António Campinos some days ago and then shared the letter as an open letter for staff to see. “The President has committed to holding another survey by no later than 2022,” said the CSC. “Some national administrations conduct yearly surveys, which look at civil servants’ attitudes to and experience of working in government departments. Such a best practice would not be out of place at the EPO.”

As I’ve noted in the video above, these surveys are designed to get particular outcomes, desired by the surveyor. Loaded questions and push polling are widely known problems. It’s therefore useful if not imperative that the union does its own survey, which is ongoing.

Here’s the full letter signed by Alain Dumont on behalf of elected staff representatives.

European Patent Office | 80298 MUNICH | GERMANY

Mr António Campinos
President of the EPO

By email


Reference: sc21132cl
Date: 18/11/2021

Staff Engagement Survey – Need for an update

Dear Mr President,

First of all, let us say something positive: we appreciate that you tried to reach out to staff and have spoken to over 1,000 individuals1 when you took up office and also participated in team meetings with 760 employees via videoconference2. It is a good thing to meet our colleagues individually or collectively, to show interest in their fate, to ask for their feedback, and to try to understand their concerns.

So what can go wrong in this endeavour? We are in constant contact with our colleagues but we seem to arrive at different assessments of how well, how committed and how satisfied staff are. The gap between how you think staff feel like and what we experience seems huge. In the absence of objective facts, these differing perceptions inevitably foster a highly polarised culture and the risk of increasing tribal politics.

What can be done to improve the situation? Fortunately, the answer is simple. The last general staff survey, the so-called “Staff Engagement Survey”, was conducted in early 2019, almost three years ago. You have committed to holding another survey by no later than 20223. Having lived through the biggest pandemic in a century, been subjected to a constant stream of reforms and reorganisations and now faced with “New Ways of Working”, we would suggest: the sooner the better.

1 IAM, https://www.iam-media.com/law-policy/man-plan
2 See slide 7 of document CA/73/21
3 See your announcement “Your voice, our future results” of 4 April 2019

Incidentally, some national administrations conduct yearly surveys, which look at civil servants’ attitudes to and experience of working in government departments4. Such a best practice would not be out of place at the EPO.

As a politician once said: “In politics and in life, ignorance is not a virtue.5” In the same vein, the same politician also added: “It’s not cool to not know what you’re talking about. That’s not keeping it real, or telling it like it is.”

Yours sincerely,

Alain Dumont
Chairman of the Central Staff Committee

4 See https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/civil-service-people-surveys
5 Barack Obama’s commencement speech at Rutgers

Just like ILO-AT decisions, these surveys are so slow to come that big decisions are already being made regardless of the outcome, making the outcome moot. In a sense, these surveys are partly PR stunts, if not in their own right (just their very existence) then maybe even the substance of them. The union’s survey will be a lot more interesting.

Links 22/11/2021: Claws Mail 4 Enters Debian and Catch-up With Legal Matters

Posted in News Roundup at 9:06 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • 9to5Linux Weekly Roundup: November 21st, 2021

      This week has been a slow on Linux news, but exciting because we got a new Ubuntu Touch release on our Linux smartphones, a new Steam Client release with some goodies for Linux gamers (like me), and a new major Mesa graphics stack release that also brings good vibes for Linux gaming.

      On top of that, I take a look at Collabora’s contributions to the Linux 5.15 LTS kernel and give you a heads up on the end of life on Linux kernel 5.14. You can enjoy these and much more in 9to5Linux’s Linux weekly roundup for November 21st, 2021, below!

    • This Is What’s Wrong With The Linux Community

      Why do so many folk in the Linux community default to overly complex solutions when it comes to solving problems?

      Jim Salter is an extremely technical guy, I get that. Running a LAMP/LEMP stack with RoundCube for him, would be as trivial as my mum starting up MS Word.

      But Jim positioned this solution as the best solution for managing email on Linux. At one point Will somewhat flippantly asked so you’re saying that in order to manage email people should spin up an Nginx server?” Jim replied with a definitive “yes”.

      That simply isn’t the case.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • Linux Action News 216

        Just how severe is this DNS cache poisoning attack revealed this week? We’ll break it down and explain why Linux is affected. Plus, the feature now removed from APT, more performance patches in the Kernel, and a big batch of project updates.

      • LHS Episode #442: Database Essentials Deep Dive | Linux in the Ham Shack

        Hello and welcome to the 442nd installment of Linux in the Ham Shack. In this episode, the hosts discuss databases of various types, especially those used in amateur radio related applications. Topics include styles of databases, storage formats, structured and unstructured data, client and server architectures, management utilities and data manipulation techniques. We hope you enjoy this episode and find the information useful. Thanks for listening and have a great week.

      • MASSIVE Proton and Kernel updates mean huge gains for Linux Gaming!

        The future of Linux gaming is looking incredibly bright as there are so many new features hitting Linux that are specifically designed for gaming! Plus, with incoming Proton builds, we’re seeing support for NVidia’s DLSS (deep learning super sampling) and many game-specific builds!

      • Josh Bressers: Episode 298 – David A Wheeler discusses the OpenSSF

        Josh and Kurt talk to David A. Wheeler about everything OpenSSF. The Open Source Security Foundation is part of the Linux Foundation, and there are 6 OpenSSF working groups. David does a great job explaining how the OpenSSF works and what the 6 working groups are doing. The working group are (in no particular order): Identifying Security Threats, Security Tooling, Best Practices, Vulnerability Disclosures, Digital Identity Attestation, Securing Critical Projects.

    • Kernel Space

      • Kernel Updates Available » PCLinuxOS

        The following Kernels are available for PCLinuxOS. Kernel 5.15.4, Kernel 5.14.21 (EOL), Kernel LTS 5.10.81 and Kernel LTS 5.4.161.

      • EROFS-Utils 1.4 Adds Experimental FSCK, MicroLZMA Compression – Phoronix

        EROFS-Utils as the collection of open-source user-space utilities for the read-only EROFS file-system is out with a big update.

        EROFS continues maturing well since its original introduction two years ago by Huawei. This read-only file-system continues to be geared for use with Android and the needs of other embedded and container environments. Following the recent Linux 5.16 merge window where EROFS added LZMA/MicroLZMA compression support and other improvements, EROFS-Utils 1.4 is now available with the latest user-space utilities.

      • Linux has no fair-share scheduling that really works for compute servers

        I was recently contacted by someone who has a small group of compute servers and wanted a simple way to do some sort of fair share scheduling for them, without the various overheads of an actual job allocation system like SLURM. This person was drawn to me because of my entry on how we do per-user CPU and memory resource limits on Ubuntu 18.04. Unfortunately the real answer to their questions is that you cannot really do useful resource management and fair-share scheduling of compute servers with only standard Linux facilities.

      • Kernel Karnage – Part 4 (Inter(ceptor)mezzo)

        In the previous blogpost of this series, we combined the functionality of two drivers, Evilcli and Interceptor, to partially bypass $vendor2. In this post we took a closer look at Interceptor’s capabilities and future features that are in development. In the upcoming blogposts, we’ll see how Interceptor as a fully standalone driver is able to conquer not just $vendor2, but other EDR products as well.

    • Applications

      • Pinta Open-Source Drawing and Image Editing Software Scores Another Update [Ed: Microsoft Mono warning]

        Last year, I wrote about Pinta getting a massive update after 5 years of silence, and now Pinta developers inform 9to5linux.com about the release and general availability of Pinta 1.7.1, the first point release coming more than fifteen months after Pinta 1.7.

        The new release is mainly a bugfix update, but it also brings some new features like the ability to scroll the canvas horizontally by holding down the Shift key while using the mouse wheel or the ability to zoom in and out of an image without pressing the Ctrl key.

      • Best Free and Open Source Alternatives to Adobe Lightroom

        Adobe Lightroom (officially Adobe Photoshop Lightroom) is a creative image organization and image manipulation software. Its main uses include importing/saving, viewing, organizing, tagging, editing, and sharing large numbers of digital images.

        What are the best free and open source alternatives?

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • Pushing Photos Through Wires

        The technology used to distribute photos through news wire services inspired a whole bunch of innovations with use cases beyond newspapers. Like television.

      • It’s time to get rid of passwords in our infrastructure

        Passwords are everywhere. Sometimes they are obvious — hardcoded in the code or laying flat in the file. Other times, they take the form of API keys, tokens, cookies or even second factors. Devs pass them in environment variables, vaults mount them on disk, teams share them over links, copy to CI/CD systems and code linters. Eventually someone leaks, intercepts or steals them. Because they pose a security risk, there is no other way to say it: passwords in our infrastructure have to go.

        There are two fundamental issues with passwords.

      • In defense of verification

        When I tested out IPFS and Arweave, what I was doing was partly for fun, partly as exploration, and partly to “kick the tires.” After all, IPFS and Arweave make their own bold claims – Arweave that it “stores documents and applications forever” and IPFS that it can “help here and now” and that it can “speed up performance” and “slash bandwidth costs.”

      • Demystifying OpenZFS 2.0: To understand the need for a 2.0, we need to look at a bit of ZFS history.

        After much discussion and planning it was agreed that it made sense for everyone to switch from Illumos to Linux as the upstream repo. And, it was agreed that future changes would be discussed across platforms before being implemented and that there would be appropriate porting layers to prevent GPL’d or Linux-KPI shim code from being introduced to other operating systems. Continuous integration (CI) for the repo would ensure that all proposed changes would have to pass CI on both Linux and FreeBSD before they could be merged. Thus, the design of OpenZFS 2.0 was born.

        Matt Ahrens provides a good visual of the workflow difference between the original OpenZFS and OpenZFS 2.0 in his 2019 OpenZFS DevSummit keynote presentation (slides 11-13).

      • How Set or Change Time Zone in Linux

        In Linux system, time zone points to local time of region or county. When time zone is set in linux then it’s time automatically set according to region or country. It is always recommended to set correct time zone according to the geographical location of the system.

        Time zone plays an important role in linux system when run cron jobs and data base transactions. In this post, we will learn how to set or change time zone in linux. There are two different ways to change time zone.

      • How to Run Containers as Systemd Service with Podman

        As we know podman is an open-source daemon-less tool which provides environment to build, run and manage containers. Running containers as systemd service means that containers will automatically start when the system gets rebooted.

        In this post, we will learn how to run containers as systemd service with podman on RHEL based distributions like RHEL 8, CentOS 8 and Rocky Linux 8.

      • Alias to list all functions loaded into bash (that don’t start with _). Also shows file it’s defined in.
      • How to configure a SMTP relay host in Sendmail

        By default, the sendmail runs locally on localhost.localdomain and tries to send the mail with the root@localhost.localdomain to the remote smtp server, which would get rejected as the localhost.localdomain will resolve to the Invalid IP.

        You must configure SendMail as SmartHost to resolve this issue.

        In this guide, we will explain how to configure a sendmail server to forward all mails generated from localhost to another SMTP server in order to send mail to remote recipients.

      • How To Install Guix System with GNOME on a Virtual Machine

        This tutorial explains step by step how to install Guix Operating System with GNOME desktop on a virtual machine. We will use the user friendly AQEMU, thus you can exercise this too with another tools if you want. This tutorial can be viewed as a beginner’s guide for you who want to try out computing with Guix. By this, we hope you find installing Guix Desktop is reasonably easier compared to any other source code based operating systems. Welcome to GNU system!

      • How to stash your files for later on Linux with Stashed

        Stashed is a neat little app that allows users to place files inside of it to copy later. It’s excellent, especially for those on Linux who regularly copy files. Here’s how you can use Stashed to save your files for copying later!

      • How to install TuxGuitar on Linux

        TuxGuitar is an open-source music composing tool. With it, users can create and edit their own guitar tablature. In this guide, we’ll go over how to install this incredible piece of software on Linux.

      • How to annotate images on Linux with Annotator

        If you work a lot with images on Linux but find the built-in image tools lacking, Annotator might be for you. With this app, you can add stamps, text, clip art, drawings, highlights, and even magnification to enhance the image. Here’s how to use Annotator on your Linux system.

      • How to perform administration operations with Ansible modules

        In previous tutorials we introduced Ansible and we discussed Ansible loops. This time we learn the basic usage of some modules we can use inside playbooks to perform some of the most common system administration operations.

      • Introduction to Wake On Lan

        Wake-on-lan (also known with the “W.O.L” acronym) is a standard ethernet feature which allows a machine to be woken up on the reception of a specific type of network packet (the so called MagicPacket). The main advantage of this feature is that it allows us to keep a machine in a low power consumption state, and be accessed only when needed. In this tutorial we see how to enable the WOL feature on our ethernet card under Linux, and how to send the network packet needed to wake up a machine.

      • Introduction to YAML with Examples

        YAML is a data serialization language. The name itself is a recursive acronym which stands for YAML Ain’t Markup Language. It is specifically designed to be human-friendly, easy to read and write, to represent settings and data structures and to work well with modern programming languages. It is used, for example, as the language for docker-compose files and to specify tasks in Ansible playbooks. In this tutorial we learn the YAML basics concepts and we see how the various data types are represented in the YAML syntax.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • What Is A Desktop Environment In Linux?

        There are many things to learn and cover when it comes to Linux, such as the different kinds of distributions, their bases, window managers, and the applications that come bundled in them. But one of the prime components of a Linux distribution is a Desktop Environment.

        If you’re new to Linux and don’t know what it is. This article looks at a desktop environment and what it’s responsible for in a Linux distribution.

    • Distributions

      • BSD

        • mcabber with OTR on FreeBSD

          mcabber is a great XMPP (Jabber) console client. It has all the important features and is easy use.

          XMPP is an open standard for messaging and presence. XMPP is the Extensible Messaging and Presence Protocol that is developed in 1999 by Jeremie Miller. He called it jabber.

      • EasyOSs

        • Zoom works in EasyOS
        • SFS cleanup code fixed in initrd

          If, for example the chromium SFS is downloaded and installed, either on the main desktop or in a container, there is going to be a menu entry and in the case of a container, an icon on the desktop.
          Easy 3.1.10 has code in the initrd that checks that the SFS still exists, and if not, then cleans-up the desktop and menu.
          Except that it doesn’t work. Have fixed it.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • How to build a home lab to learn new Linux skills | Enable Sysadmin

          Most IT people learn by doing. Creating a Linux home-lab environment puts you in a position to accomplish a series of tasks.

        • Bring your Kubernetes workloads to the edge

          Although cloud-based applications continue to grow, some use cases require moving workloads out of cloud data centers. The reason is usually to keep your computing power closer to the users, the source of data, or other things you want to control. Instead of running these workloads as separate entities, you might want to create uniform systems, extending clouds to the edge. This technique is known as edge computing.

          The past few years have seen a proliferation of edge computing infrastructure. Today you have a wealth of options, from running containers directly in container runtimes (such as Podman), to joining nodes to Kubernetes clusters, to running whole lightweight Kubernetes distributions on edge nodes.

          As infrastructure becomes widely accessible, developers need to think through the edge computing journey. An important question in this arena is, How do we build our workloads for this new world? This article discusses the current state of tools for managing containers at the edge, including what WebAssembly (also known as Wasm) offers in this domain and what to expect from the field of edge computing in the near future.

        • The NeuroFedora Blog: Next Open NeuroFedora meeting: 22 November 1300 UTC
        • IT leadership: 3 CIO priorities in 2022

          Every CIO is beginning to make plans for 2022. While there is always an overwhelming list of things to achieve, strategic CIOs can focus on these three key areas to guide their organization forward in the coming year:

        • Digital transformation: 4 ways to create a sense of urgency

          In the last 18 months, entire industries were pushed to make decisions in days that would typically be debated and planned for months or even years. Customer-facing brands, in particular, were forced to cope with rapid, unpredictable changes in supply, demand, and logistics.

          Adding to these challenges, a recent survey found that nearly 40 percent of respondents give a business only one chance to provide a satisfactory digital experience before moving to another supplier. With just one opportunity to make a lasting impression, many enterprises have made it a top business priority to create more personalized customer experiences.

          Here are four key actions that will bring increased urgency to your digital transformation strategies.

        • Review: Fedora 35

          Fedora 35 was released on 2 November 2021, slightly after the anticipated launch in late October. I respect their delay, the Fedora team did not want to release a buggy product, or they still had some key issues to workout; nevertheless Fedora 35 is here. For some background, Fedora is a Linux distribution which aims to create, “an innovative, free, and open source platform for hardware, clouds, and containers that enables software developers and community members to build tailored solutions for their users.” (Quoted from getfedora.org.) Many Linux users will know Fedora as the community and upstream version of Red Hat Enterprise Linux, the enterprise version of Fedora known primarily for running on servers and a company to provide support.


          Time from the LUKS decryption screen to GNOME Display Manager was approximately 20 seconds, quite good for boot-up times. Consider also that I use a solid-state hard drive for my main installation media, which improves boot times significantly. Its not mere milliseconds, but it is very good for a full distro.

          GNOME 41 is super polished. It seems like everything works out of the box (come on NVIDIA, lets get you on board). Whereas on other distros I would need to configure many options and drivers to get everything working properly, Fedora just works. The polish extends to all of the facets of this operating system. The boot-up splash screen is simple and beautiful. The installation of updates is clean, and the rebooting during installation is well polished. Fedora knows how to take control of an operating system and do it properly. I love how dnf (the package manager) handles updates and installing software. My Steam games worked as expected. I could edit photos easily using the photo editing software of my choice. Firefox worked great for streaming media. The HDMI output was perfect. What can I say, Fedora leaves little left to want. Yes there may be more highly configurable distributions, but Fedora seems to be one of, if not the most professional distribution I have used. (I have not been a Fedora user in the past.)

      • Debian Family

        • Claws Mail 4 in experimental

          A full month has passed since Claws Mail 4.0.0 was uploaded to Debian experimental, and, somewhat surprisingly, I’ve received no bug report about it.

          This of course can be either because nobody has been brave enough to install it or because well, it works really nice.

          For those who don’t know what I’m talking about, just note that this version is the first Debian upload for the GTK+3 version of Claws Mail. There was an initial upstream release, namely 3.99, but it was less polished and also I was very busy, so I decided not to upload it. Since then I’ve been using git’s ‘gtk3′ branch daily without problems, so, for me, it’s as stable as its GTK+2 counterpart. There’s still some rough edges, of course.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Run your Ubuntu in US Government Clouds

          In August 2016, the United States government announced a new federal source-code policy, which mandates that at least 20% of custom source code developed by or for any agency of the federal government must be released as open-source software (OSS). The memo of this policy also states that the Federal Government spends more than $6 billion each year on software through more than 42,000 transactions. Obviously, this is a huge business for all open-source developers. The question is “how can you get the business from the Federal Government?” The answer is FIPS.

          Federal Information Processing Standards (FIPS) are standards and guidelines for federal computer systems that are developed by National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). Certain federal-related applications are required to be FIPS compliant, and many non-government organizations also follow FIPS standards. Ubuntu Pro provides you with cryptographic packages that are tested and attested by atsec Information Security, a NIST accredited laboratory. And Google automatically encrypts traffic between VMs that travels between Google data centers using FIPS 140-2 validated encryption. Your workloads can easily be FIPS compliant if you properly deploy your workloads on Ubuntu Pro in Google Cloud. Ubuntu 18.04 Pro offers you two FIPS options: FIPS and FIPS-updates. Let’s SSH into your Ubuntu Pro virtual machine. If you haven’t yet upgraded your Ubuntu LTS to Ubuntu Pro, please follow this tutorial. In less than One Minute, you will be able to get your Ubuntu Pro machine without losing any of your mission-critical workloads.

        • History of Open Source Identity Management (part 2)

          This is the second blog post (part 1 available here) where we look at the history of open source identity management. This post focuses on Oauth and OpenID, the protocols currently used in modern applications and services.

          This post does not cover the technical details of the open source identity management standards, which are explained very well in this Okta blog post. Rather, it explains the origins of Oauth and OpenID, and provides insights on the context that led to their creation.

    • Devices/Embedded

      • Open Hardware/Modding

        • Digital Markets Act – the FSFE calls for Device Neutrality

          On the imminent voting of the Digital Markets Act – the latest EU proposal on internet platform regulation – the FSFE demands device neutrality as a fundamental element for safeguarding consumer protection in open, fair, and contestable digital markets.

          While digital devices are a ubiquitous reality in all aspects of life, control over the hardware and software running on them is increasingly being limited by internet platforms, digital services providers, hardware manufacturers, and vendors. The European Commission’s Digital Markets Act (DMA) is a regulatory instrument for targeting large internet companies that act as gatekeepers in digital markets. Such gatekeepers may be internet platforms, service providers, manufacturers, and vendors satisfying criteria defined by law. This regulatory initiative is an attempt to create fairer and more competitive markets for online platforms in the EU. On November 22, the European Parliament’s leading IMCO committee will vote on its position.

          The FSFE urges the Members of the European Parliament in the upcoming vote to safeguard device neutrality principles based on Open Standards and interoperability, securing the interest of consumers for a contestable, open, and competitive digital market in the EU.


          After the committee voting on Monday, 22 November, the proposal will incorporate the approved amendments. Next up is the plenary voting to achieve the final position of the European Parliament, planned for December. The FSFE will continue to monitor the whole process closely and demand device neutrality to the full extent in the legislative text, so users are empowered to control technology.

          “The digital markets will benefit by the regulatory proposal of the DMA. Device neutrality is fundamental for a fair, competitive, and contestable market. We demand stricter consent rules for pre-installed apps, no vendor lock-in, full interoperability, and real-time data portability. Free Software and Open Standards are key to achieve these goals”, says Lucas Lasota, the FSFE’s Deputy Legal Coordinator.

        • Arduino Plays The Glasses | Hackaday

          Have you ever been on a city street and seen a busker playing music on glasses? Each glass has a different amount of water and produces a different note when tapped. [Cyberlab] must have seen them and created an Arduino robot to play tunes on glasses. You can see the result in the video below.

          If we had done this, we might have had a solenoid per glass or used some linear component like a 3D printer axis to pick different glasses. [Cyberlab] did something smarter. The glasses go in a circle and a stepper motor points at the correct glass and activates a solenoid. The result is pretty good and it is a lot simpler than any of our ideas.

          If you aren’t musically inclined, you might wonder how you’d program the songs. There’s an example of taking a music box score from a website — apparently, there are lots of these — and removing any polyphony from it. The site mentioned even has an editor where you can import MIDI files and work with them to produce a music box strip that you could then convert. Then you encode each note as a number from 0 to 6.

        • Slick Keyboard Built With PCB Magic | Hackaday

          Sometimes a chance conversation leads you to discover something cool you’ve not seen before, and before you know it, you’re ordering parts for yet another hardware build. That’s what happened to this scribe the other day when chatting on some random discord, to QMK maintainer [Nick Brassel aka tzarc] about Djinn, a gorgeous 64-key split mechanical keyboard testbed. It’s a testbed because it uses the newest STM32G4x microcontroller family, and QMK currently does not have support for this in the mainline release. For the time being, [Nick] maintains a custom release, until it gets merged.

        • Using Compute Module 4 IO Board pins as an ATX case front panel header

          I used the GPIO and 14-pin header present on the Seaberry (which conveniently are identical to the headers on the official CM4 IO Board), and wound up with a fully functionality power button, power LED, and activity LED!

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • SaaS/Back End/Databases

        • Opinion | The GOP’s Redistricting Loophole

          The once-a-decade redrawing of legislative and congressional maps is still in its early phases, but a concerted Republican tactic for defending racially discriminatory maps is already clear. And thanks to a 2019 Supreme Court decision greenlighting partisan gerrymandering, they may just get away with it.

        • A Conversation with Margo Seltzer and Mike Olson: The history of Berkeley DB

          Kirk McKusick sat down with Margo Seltzer and Mike Olson to discuss the history of Berkeley DB, for which they won the ACM Software System Award in 2021. Kirk McKusick has spent his career as a BSD and FreeBSD developer. Margo Seltzer has spent her career as a professor of computer science and as an entrepreneur of database software companies. Mike Olson started his career as a software developer and later started and managed several open-source software companies. Berkeley DB is a production-quality, scalable, NoSQL, Open Source platform for embedded transactional data management.

      • Public Services/Government

        • [Old] Schleswig-Holstein’s digital minister Albrecht on the switch to open source

          Schleswig-Holstein is the only federal state that wants to completely replace proprietary programs with open-source programs. What are your reasons?

          We have reached our limits with the contracts for proprietary software. Firstly, financially, because license fees have continued to rise over the past few years. Second, with regard to our goals for the digitization of administration. Open source simply offers us more flexibility. At the same time, all the advantages that open source always has apply: sovereignty, data security and data protection.

          Can you give a specific example of open source software that makes you more flexible?

          During the pandemic, we were able to quickly increase our capacities for video conferences because we had already prepared the Jitsi-based open source system. Many other countries were trapped in proprietary systems that they couldn’t quickly expand. A second example is our school portal: Because we have switched to open source, we can design the interface flexibly and combine services as we want.

        • No More Microsoft! This German State Plans to Switch 25,000 Windows PCs to Linux and LibreOffice

          Schleswig-Holstein is the northernmost German state that has planned to switch to open-source solutions in its administration and schools.

          And, it is not about a couple of systems; as per the report by The Document Foundation, all 25,000 PCs associated with administration and school will be moving from Windows to Linux.

          Not just limited to that, the switch also involves replacing Microsoft Office with LibreOffice.

      • Programming/Development

        • 51,552 JavaScript tests can’t be wrong

          That’s a wrap, folks: the MVP, defined as Baseline Interpreter with irregexp and Wasm support for little-endian POWER9, is now officially V. This is the first and lowest of the JIT tiers, but is already a significant improvement; the JavaScript conformance suite executed using the same interpreter with –no-ion –no-baseline –no-blinterp –no-native-regexp took 762.4 seconds (1.53x as long) and one test timed out completely. An optimized build would be even faster.

          Currently the code generator makes heavy use of POWER9-specific instructions, as well as VSX to make efficient use of the FPU. There are secondary goals of little-endian POWER8 and big-endian support (including pre-OpenPOWER so your G5 can play too), but these weren’t necessary for the MVP, and we’d need someone actually willing to maintain those since I don’t run Linux on my G5 or my POWER6 and I don’t run any of my OpenPOWER systems big. While we welcome patches for them, they won’t hold up primary support for POWER9 little-endian, which is currently the only “tier 1″ platform. I note parenthetically this should also work on LE Power10 but as a matter of policy I’m not going to allow any special support for the architecture until IBM gets off their corporate rear end and actually releases the firmware source code. No free work for a chip that isn’t!

        • Paul Tagliamonte – Be careful when using vxlan!

          I’ve spent a bit of time playing with vxlan – which is very neat, but also incredibly insecure by default.

          When using vxlan, be very careful to understand how the host is connected to the internet. The kernel will listen on all interfaces for packets, which means hosts accessable to VMs it’s hosting (e.g., by bridged interface or a private LAN will accept packets from VMs and inject them into arbitrary VLANs, even ones it’s not on.

        • Perl/Raku

          • The Weekly Challenge – 1000 days

            We all know, The Weekly Challenge a.k.a Perl Weekly Challenge started on 25th March 2019. I must confess I didn’t expect it to last this long. What worked in our favour is that we instantly found handful core supporters, who not only took part in the weekly challenge regularly but also started spreading the word. I am fortunate that they are still part of the team. While I was collecting my thoughts for the blog, I read my first RECAPS blog. You will find the format and style of RECAPS has changed a lot since.

            When the idea of weekly challenge came to my mind first, I didn’t have the clear plan initially. I was just going with the flow since I didn’t have any help with the management of the weekly challenge. In the week 7, I decided to do weekly review of Perl solutions. The first such review went live on 13th May 2019. I was lucky to found help with the Perl review immediately. The week 8 saw a new reviewer, Kian-Men Ang with first review. She did a fantastic job and became very popular among Team PWC members. The last review she shared with us the week 39. I then took the charge back for few weeks. In the week 43, we finally found our new reviewer, Ryan Thompson. He came up with his own style of review as you can see in this first review from him. Ryan carried on the review till the week 54. I didn’t have the courage to take the charge back. I was looking for volunteer to take the Perl solutions review task. I didn’t have wait long. In the week 65, we found our new reviewer, Colin Crain. We are lucky to have Colin as our current Perl reviewer. His quality review every week is much appreciated by every team members.

        • Python

        • Shell/Bash/Zsh/Ksh

          • Oil 0.9.4 – User Feedback

            For the last couple weeks, I focused on fixing user-reported bugs and addressing feature requests. Thanks to Miles Alan and bb010g for particularly thorough testing.

          • A modern, ergonomic Unix shell configuration with Fish

            The first thing I noticed was that the default configuration of Fish was equivalent to about 30-45 lines of ZSH config. So even starting fresh with Fish was already roughly on-par with my previous ZSH configuration. Moreover, I find that the modern Fish dialect, especially its error-case semantics, are vastly superior considering the frequency with which things go wrong. In this way, Fish gives me a much more solid foundation on which to build a proper environment for myself.

  • Leftovers

    • WhatsApp privacy policy tweaked in Europe after record fine

      Following an investigation, the Irish data protection watchdog issued a €225m (£190m) fine – the second-largest in history over GDPR – and ordered WhatsApp to change its policies.

      WhatsApp is appealing against the fine, but is amending its policy documents in Europe and the UK to comply.

      However, it insists that nothing about its actual service is changing.

    • Science

      • Let the computer do the work

        I used to give classes on programming style and technique, and one of the maxims I taught was “let the computer do the work”: use the computer to automate repetitive or error-prone tasks.

    • Hardware

      • Beaded QR Code Bracelets Weave A Storytelling Interface | Hackaday

        For centuries, people have been using patterns to communicate information in an eye-catching way. QR codes are no different, although they require a barcode scanner to decode rather than a knowledge of Navajo Native American history.

        November is National Native American Heritage Month, and as part of their celebration, [ngaskins] and their students are making seed bead bracelets with QR codes. When scanned, each QR triggers a story written by the student in the form of an audio file, a video clip, or an animation. [ngaskins] says that this project was inspired by eyeDazzler, a beadwork tapestry made with software that generates Navajo weaving patterns.

    • Health/Nutrition/Agriculture

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Apple customer accidentally swallows Airpod while on a call.

          I say when you buy an Apple product, you already get one great big incredibly expensive pile of shit. (In the case of Airpods, they didn’t even follow the specification for the simple Subband Codec properly.)

        • Microsoft’s Blue Screen of Death is changing to black in Windows 11 – The Verge [Ed: Wow! Buy now! INNOVATION from Microsoft! I mean, INNOVA~1.]

          Microsoft is changing the classic BSOD to black. It’s changing in Windows 11, and is part of a broader visual overhaul to the operating system.

        • Microsoft rushes out fix for Windows 11 bug crashing random apps
        • Security

          • On CVE-2019-5021

            A few years ago, it was discovered that the root account was not locked out in Alpine’s Docker images. This was not the first time that this was the case, an actually exploitable case of this was first fixed with a hotfix in 2015, but when the hotfix was replaced with appropriate use of /etc/securetty, the regression was inadvertently reintroduced for some configurations.

            It should be noted that I said some configurations there. Although CVE-2019-5021 was issued a CVSSv2 score of 9.8, in reality I have yet to find any Alpine-based docker image that is actually vulnerable to CVE-2019-5021. Of course, this doesn’t mean that Alpine shouldn’t have been locking out the root user on its minirootfs releases: that was a mistake, which I am glad was quickly rectified.

            Lately, however, there have been a few incidents involving CVE-2019-5021 involving less than honest actors in the security world. For example, a person named Donghyun Lee started mass-filing CVEs against Alpine-based images without actually verifying if the image was vulnerable or not, which Jerry Gamblin called out on Twitter last year. Other less than honest actors, have focused instead on attempting to use CVE-2019-5021 to sell their remediation solutions, implying a risk of vulnerability, where most likely none actually exists.

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • Facebook Messenger and Instagram may not get default end-to-end encryption until 2023

              In a post in The Telegraph, Antigone Davis, Meta’s head of safety, attributes the delay to concerns about user safety. Since E2EE means only the sender and recipient will see their conversations, Davis says Meta wants to ensure that this doesn’t interfere with the platform’s ability to help stop criminal activity. Once E2EE does become available by default, Davis notes that the company will “use a combination of non-encrypted data across our apps, account information and reports from users” to help keep them safe, all while “assisting public safety efforts.”

            • WhatsApp pushes privacy update to comply with Irish ruling

              WhatsApp is owned by Facebook, now renamed Meta Platforms. With the update, users in Europe will see a banner notification at the top of their chat list that will take them to the new information.

              WhatsApp is taking the action after getting hit with a record 225 million euro ($267 million) fine in September from Ireland’s data privacy watchdog for violating stringent European Union data protection rules on transparency about sharing people’s data with other Facebook companies.

              The chat service said it disagreed with the decision, but it has to comply by updating its policy while it appeals. The update doesn’t affect how data is handled, and users won’t have to agree to anything new or take any other action.

            • Why you shouldn’t use “Onion over VPN” servers that your VPN company provides.

              Some VPN companies like NordVPN advertise “Onion over VPN”, but is it safe?

              The short answer is, no. It’s not.

              The long answer is, hell no…and this is why.

              Tor isn’t just an anonymity network proxy system. It’s a special browser with special settings designed to resist fingerprinting attacks, isolate sites from each other, and forget everything you do.

              If you use a normal Web browser with the Tor network, you don’t get any of these protections. It also means that if someone has compromised the VPN server you’re using, well, Tor is running on that server and not your computer.

              Obviously, this is less private, and much less secure, than running Tor and the Tor Browser on your computer. There is no safe way to use onion domains on a normal Web browser, even if your VPN provider knows what they’re doing.

            • Certbot’s Instructions Generator now available in Farsi

              EFF’s Certbot tool helps to automate TLS/SSL certificates for web servers—and we believe that should be a global right. Certbot is a free, open source software tool for automatically using Let’s Encrypt certificates, and is part of EFF’s larger effort to encrypt the entire Internet. Websites need to use HTTPS to secure the web. Along with HTTPS Everywhere, Certbot aims to build a network that is more structurally private, safe, and protected against censorship.

              A long standing goal is to make Certbot more accessible to those needing it in languages other than English. Today, we have taken that first step, by translating our Instructions Generator into Farsi.

    • Defence/Aggression

      • Nicaragua explains why it’s leaving OAS, responds to US attacks on its elections
      • CIA, MKULTRA and the Cover-up of U.S. Germ Warfare in the Korean War

        In this article, CIA mind-control programs are linked to experiments on returning Korean War POWs. Also revealed is the extent to which CIA officials from Projects Bluebird, Artichoke and MKULTRA collaborated with U.S. biological warfare efforts, including the top secret “processing” of high-ranking POWs who confessed to U.S. use of biological weapons. This is a long involved story, and the full history has never been told before.

      • China downgrades diplomatic ties with Lithuania

        Beijing views self-governed Taiwan as a Chinese province and vows to reunify it with the mainland, even by force if necessary. Under its “One China” policy, Beijing wants countries to officially recognize the Chinese government over that of Taiwan and break formal political ties with the island.

      • New Details Shed Light on Lukashenko’s Human Trafficking Network

        In his desire to ratchet up the pressure on Europe, Lukashenko has created a shameful system that now stretches as far as Syria, Iraq and Turkey. A team of DER SPIEGEL journalists spent several weeks reporting in Minsk, Istanbul and along the Polish border. The reporters evaluated flight data and visa documents, interviewed smugglers and middlemen who bring migrants to Belarus for the regime. Their research reveals a smuggling system against which the EU hasn’t yet found a remedy. Every day, hundreds of people land at the airport in Minsk; every day, more and more people push towards the border.

      • Spain: Migration Crisis Spirals Out of Control

        On the evening of November 5, a Moroccan migrant on an Air Arabia Maroc flight between Morocco and Turkey pretended to be suffering from a diabetic coma. The supposed medical emergency forced the pilot to land the plane in Palma, a city on the Spanish island of Mallorca, located in the western Mediterranean Sea.

        Upon landing, an airplane door was opened to allow a medical team to transfer the allegedly sick traveler to a local hospital. At that moment, more than two dozen migrants rushed to the door, exited the aircraft, fled across the runways, and jumped the airport’s perimeter fence. A video of the incident, initially censored by Spanish media, was made public by Vox, a conservative party opposed to mass migration.

        After hours of searching, twelve of the migrants were eventually found and detained. At least 13 others, thought to be Moroccans and Palestinians, remain at large. They are believed to have boarded ferries for the seven-hour voyage from Mallorca to Barcelona on the Spanish mainland.

        Once in Spain, illegal immigrants are protected by European Union human rights laws and are unlikely ever to be deported. They are also able to travel unhindered from Spain to other EU countries including France, Belgium and the Netherlands, all of which have large Moroccan communities. At this point, the fugitives could be anywhere in Europe and are not likely to be found.

        Spanish police said that the plot, which forced the closure of the Palma de Mallorca airport, the third-busiest in Spain, was hatched by a Moroccan Facebook group called Brooklyn.

      • Poland says Belarus has changed tactics on migrant crisis

        “Now a bit of a new method has been taken on by the migrants and Belarusian services… Smaller groups of people are trying to cross the border in many places.”

        He added that “there is no question that these attacks are directed by Belarusian services.” The West accuses Belarus of artificially creating the crisis by bringing in would-be migrants — mostly from the Middle East — and taking them to the border with promises of an easy crossing into the European Union.

    • Environment

      • Steve Wozniak’s startup Privateer plans to launch hundreds of satellites to study space debris

        Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak’s startup Privateer aims to help humanity get the goods on space junk before it’s too late.

        The Hawaii-based company, whose existence Wozniak and co-founder Alex Fielding announced in September, wants to characterize the ever-expanding space debris population like never before. Privateer will do this by incorporating a variety of data, including crowdsourced information and observations made by its own sizable satellite fleet.

      • The Day The Bees Died

        His painting of the dead bees is from his long-term project “Testaments of Loss”. Loss of biodiversity, habitats, and the consequences of trophic cascades are considered as serious an environmental threat as climate change (to which each is intricately linked). In this ongoing project, Derek is creating a series of direct paintings and sketches documenting small-scale incidents of environmental loss. These will be collected to form a large wall of 100 or more paintings that give a sense of scale and range beyond their small and immediate observations. He had begun these using the same methods he uses for other field sketchings. They are sketchbook pages- direct observations annotated with notes in the field. They are framed as objects, with ragged edges of spiral bindings.

      • Climate Diplomacy Failed Again. Only Movements From Below Can Save the Planet.
      • Energy

        • Forum for fossil-free transport focused on distribution infrastructure for electricity, gas and hydrogen

          The Roadmap for Fossil-Free Transport sets ambitious goals for the future, including 700,000 electric and 130,000 gas-powered passenger cars by 2030.

        • The [Cryptocurrency] Company Behind the Renaming of the Los Angeles Staples Center

          Less than four years ago, Crypto.com was the personal blog of a University of Pennsylvania computer science professor.

          By the end of this year, the name will be emblazoned on one of the most storied U.S. sports venues, part of an expensive marketing blitz from a little-known company that took over the web address and turned the site into a cryptocurrency playground.

        • Indigenous groups say Big Oil’s pollution threatens their existence in Canadian forest

          Oil and gas companies like ExxonMobil and the Canadian giant Suncor have transformed the tar sands — also called oil sands — into one of the world’s largest industrial developments, covering an area larger than New York City. They have built sprawling waste pits that leach heavy metals into groundwater and processing plants that spew pollutants into the air, sending a sour stench for miles.

          The mines’ ecological impacts are so vast and so deep that L’Hommecourt and other Indigenous people here — mostly from the Dene and Cree First Nations — say the industry has challenged their very existence, even as it has provided jobs and revenue to Native businesses and communities. People in this region have long suspected that the tar sands mines were poisoning the land and everything it feeds.

        • Officials investigate California oil sheen near earlier leak

          The U.S. Coast Guard on Saturday dispatched aircraft and boats to investigate the oil sheen measuring about 70 feet (21 meters) by 30 feet (9 meters) off the coast of Orange County.

        • Facebook Lobbying Congress on Blockchain Policy

          Facebook has registered this month to lobby Congress on blockchain policy, following a rebranding of the company that is intended to take the company beyond its social media roots.

          The lobby registration was filed on November 4 and it comes after the infrastructure bill, signed into law this week, established tax reporting requirements for cryptocurrencies, which require the decentralized transaction ledger known as the blockchain to function.

        • Cryptocurrency to be regulated and gains taxed; govt to amend I-T laws

          Revenue secretary Tarun Bajaj said that in terms of income tax, some people are already paying capital gains tax on the income from cryptocurrency, and in respect of goods and services tax (GST) also the law is “very clear” that the rate would be applicable as those in case of other services.

      • Wildlife/Nature

        • Conservation ranger slain in Congo’s Virunga National Park

          Chief Brigadier Etienne Mutazimiza Kanyaruchinya, 48, was killed Saturday evening when 100 heavily armed men, presumed to be former members of the M23 rebel group, attacked a patrol post near the village of Bukima in Congo’s North Kivu Province. The rest of the rangers fled unharmed, said the statement.

          The institute said it was the second attack in two weeks by the same group, which operates along the Rwandan and Ugandan borders and is trying to establish bases in the park. The previous attack was repelled by the Congolese military but several soldiers were killed.

      • Overpopulation

        • Just population policies for an overpopulated world

          After three decades of neglect, more environmentalists are waking back up to the need to limit human numbers. But like Rip Van Winkle, we find that the world changed while we were asleep. There are now billions more people, consuming more than ever, while our world has grown warmer, tamer, and more polluted. A new article in The Ecological Citizen discusses what just population policies might look like in an overpopulated world.

        • Overpopulation

          In a particular place, over population can also be caused by an influx of people forced into the area due to war, famine or other disasters making their previous home uninhabitable. Climate Change is causing an increase in the number of hurricanes and floods and is likely to cause many more people to become displaced in the future. Overcrowding leads to further demand for limited resources and this, in turn, can lead to more conflict and warfare.

          As humans seek out more resources, they take over land that was once the habitat of other species leading to huge biodiversity loss. Present extinction rates may be as high as 140,000 species lost every year due to humans over fishing and taking over large areas of land (such as tropical rainforests) to use for farming food and fuel crops.

        • Climate crisis: Make overpopulation part of the conversation

          With all the attention paid to environmental destruction and global warming by ordinary citizens and world leaders, I fail to see why overpopulation is never addressed.

        • Readers’ Letters: We must admit overpopulation harms world

          It is a subject that no-one seems to want to talk about and yet, logic dictates that a smaller global population will automatically decrease the ever-growing demand for the consumables that are destroying our climate.

    • Finance

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

    • Misinformation/Disinformation

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • Austrian public broadcaster secretly deleted report on persecution of Christians and Jews in Europe

        On Tuesday noon, public broadcaster ORF reported on its homepage about the new OSCE report, according to which the number of anti-Christian and anti-Semitic hate crimes in Europe has increased significantly. However, only for a short time – because the report was suddenly deleted without comment and cannot be found since.

      • Car Bomb Kills Popular Broadcast Journalist in Somalia

        A Somali journalist with state-run media was killed Saturday in Mogadishu when a suicide bomber blew up his car, government officials and his colleagues said. Another journalist also was injured.

        Abdiaziz Mohamud Guled, better known as Afrika, the director of the state-run Radio Mogadishu, died from his wounds, while fellow journalist Sharmarke Warsame, who was traveling with Guled, sustained a severe injury, according to government spokesperson Mohamed Ibrahim Mo’alimuu.

      • Somalia: Suicide bomber kills well-known journalist

        Islamic militant group al-Shabab had reportedly been “hunting” Abdiaziz Afrika for a long time. The director of the state-run Radio Mogadishu was reportedly attacked after leaving a restaurant.

      • Famed Chinese Dissident: U.S. ‘Already In Authoritarian State,’ ‘Dangerous’ Wokeism Like Mao Revolution

        Chinese dissident Ai Weiwei, a famed artist and activist, warned Americans during an interview that aired late last week that they are already under the control of an authoritarian state, they just don’t realize it yet.

        Weiwei said that the situation in China has become “more extreme, in terms of censorship, in terms of their tolerance to dissidents.” He later added that he was not hopeful for China’s future given the direction that China is going.

    • Freedom of Information/Freedom of the Press

      • Will Poland be the only EU country to jail a journalist for doing their job?

        According to the European Court of Human Rights, only an “overriding public interest” can justify requiring a journalist to reveal a source, and only if this requirement is “reasonably proportionate to the legitimate aim pursued.”

        These conditions have not so far been demonstrated by the Polish authorities. When the Gdansk appeal court ordered Włodkowska to reveal her source on 15 October, the court simply said the “good of the justice system requires it.”

      • Jamal Khashoggi’s fiancée pens letter asking Justin Bieber not to perform in Saudi Arabia

        The fiancée of the slain Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi has published an open letter in The Washington Post asking the singer Justin Bieber to cancel his performance at a Formula One race in Saudi Arabia.

        In the letter, Hatice Cengiz urged Bieber to cancel his scheduled Dec. 5 performance in the Red Sea city of Jiddah to “send a powerful message to the world that your name and talent will not be used to restore the reputation of a regime that kills its critics.”

        Khashoggi’s “brutal murder made headlines all over the world,” Cengiz wrote. “Ever since, many human rights organizations and individuals, including myself, have been calling for justice and accountability.”

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • Opinion | Kyle Rittenhouse Didn’t Act Alone: Law Enforcement Must Be Held Accountable

        For two weeks, we’ve heard trial testimony and seen evidence of the events that occurred on August 25, 2020 — the night that Kyle Rittenhouse shot and killed two people and injured another during a Black Lives Matter protest in Kenosha, Wisconsin. While Rittenhouse was not held accountable, he was not the only one whose conduct on that deadly night should be scrutinized. The actions — and inaction — of the Kenosha Police Department and the Kenosha County Sheriff’s Department in the preceding 72 hours played a critical part in the tragic events that took place.

      • Afghanistan: Taliban unveil new rules banning women in TV dramas

        Women have been banned from appearing in television dramas in Afghanistan under new rules imposed by the Taliban government.

        Female journalists and presenters have also been ordered to wear headscarves on screen, although the guidelines do not say which type of covering to use.

        Reporters say some of the rules are vague and subject to interpretation.

    • Desperate for cash, Afghan families are selling young daughters into marriage

      Her father, Murad Khan, a day laborer who hasn’t found work in months and has eight children to feed, looks much older than his 55 years — his face is worn with worry. His decision to sell Benazir to marriage at such a young age comes down to a cold calculation.

      “We are 10 people in the family. I’m trying to keep 10 alive by sacrificing one,” he said in Pashto.

    • The popularity of remote work persists in Luxembourg

      Others have in the meantime fully embraced home office culture, although there was not really a chose with two lockdown periods being imposed last year. As the most recent report from the National Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies (STATEC) dates back to June this year, it is difficult to assess where exactly the country is standing at the moment.

      STATEC did however find that remote work slowed down during the second trimester of the year. Nevertheless, it remains considerably elevated with 41% of employees affected, although the highest point ever was even higher at 52%, reached during the second trimester of 2020, at the height of the pandemic.

  • Monopolies

    • Why is the “right to repair” gadgets and machines spreading?

      Apple’s change of heart is being seen as a victory for a growing “right to repair” movement. Around the world, organisations such as The Repair Association, an American advocacy group, are fighting manufacturers’ tendencies to bar people from fixing their own goods, whether smart gadgets, cars or washing machines. Carmakers are coming under increasing pressure. John Deere, a tractor manufacturer, is embroiled in a long-running row with farmers, many of whom have downloaded hacked software for their vehicles so that they can make repairs without going through a costly authorised dealership. Right to repair is a popular cause. A YouGov survey carried out last month, for example, found that 81% of Britons would support the expansion of right-to-repair legislation to include smartphones, tablets and laptops (it already covers things such as white goods and televisions). Politicians seem to be on board too. Twenty-seven American states are considering right-to-repair legislation, according to the US Public Interest Research Group (US PIRG), a lobby group, although none has yet passed into law. The European Parliament recently voted to beef up regulation in the EU, so that certain new electrical goods will need to be repairable for at least ten years.

    • Police charge Amazon India executives in drug smuggling case

      Last week, police in the central state of Madhya Pradesh arrested two men for allegedly trafficking 20kg of the drug to other Indian states.

      Police say the men had traded cannabis on the site in the guise of selling stevia leaves, a natural sweetener.

    • A grim milestone: I maxed out the number of spammy addresses Gmail can block | Ars Technica

      You may not have noticed, but Google limits the number of blocked addresses you can have.

    • Thailand rejects covid-19 drug granted by European Patent Office and US Patent and Trademark Office [Ed: The language here suggests the author is clueless; EPO and USPTO don’t care about patent quality; EPO became like USPTO, only caring about money, nothing else]

      Favipiravir is a broad-spectrum antiviral drug used in the treatment of multiple diseases and is the first drug that has been approved by various countries as an emergency treatment for covid-19. Thailand’s Department of Intellectual Property has rejected a Thai patent application filed under the compulsory licence system for a specific formulation of Favipiravir in tablet form.

    • Patents

      • Guest Post: Design Protection and Functionality: Does the PTO or the Copyright Office Apply a More Rubbery Stamp? [Ed: They ought to keep patents out of designs completely; trademarks and sometimes copyrights already cover that, just as copyright covers software sufficiently]

        In Design Patent Law’s Identity Crisis, presented at the Berkeley Center for Law & Technology’s February 2021 “Design Patents” symposium, we traced the origins of design patent law’s ornamentality/non-functionality doctrine and showed how the Federal Circuit, the nation’s de facto design patent emperor over the past four decades, has turned the doctrine on its head: it has upended the 1902 Act’s intent and reversed three-quarters of a century of regional circuit jurisprudence. So much so that the post-1902 Act regional circuit design patent cases invalidating design patents on functionality grounds would come out oppositely under the Federal Circuit’s lax standards. Those standards led to the absurd result that Apple could disgorge Samsung’s profits on its smartphones because they employed rounded rectangular shapes. We showed that the Patent Act limited design protection to original, ornamental articles of manufacture, and excluded protection for functionality.

        BCLT invited practitioners and academics to comment on our analysis. While none of the commentators questioned, no less refuted, our core finding that the Federal Circuit has flipped the ornamentality/non-functionality doctrine, several offered fig leaves to clothe the Federal Circuit’s lax standards for design patent eligibility and infringement. In responding to our article, practitioner Perry Saidman and Professor Mark McKenna suggested that the design patent regime can be justified in part based on the tighter functionality screen that the PTO applies to design patents than the low threshold that the Copyright Office applies to copyright registrations to useful articles.

      • CVC Files Motion to Exclude Evidence, ToolGen Opposes, and CVC Replies in Interference No. 106,126 [Ed: Latest from Kevin E. Noonan on his endeavours trying to make it acceptable to get patent monopolies on life and nature]

        On September 17th, Junior Party the University of California/Berkeley, the University of Vienna, and Emmanuelle Charpentier (collectively, “CVC”) filed its Motion to Exclude certain evidence presented by Senior Party ToolGen Inc. in Interference No. 106,126. ToolGen filed its Opposition to CVC’s motion on October 8th, and CVC filed its Reply on October 15th.


        (all of which factual predicates are satisfied here, ToolGen argued). ToolGen asserted three bases for establishing the interview’s trustworthiness: Dr. Doudna herself confirmed the article was written after she was interviewed; the sentiments contained in the interview were ones she had voiced in several other instances; and Dr. Doudna has never corrected or retracted she made in the interview, even in her deposition when given an opportunity to do so.

        ToolGen also asserted that this evidence should not be excluded because it is “highly probative of Dr. Doudna’s contemporaneous thoughts regarding the doubts she had that CRISPR-Cas9 could be adapted for use in eukaryotic cells,” citing United States v. U.S. Gypsum Co., 333 U.S. 364, 395–96 (1948), and the Board’s own preference for contemporaneous statements on this very issue in Interference No. 105,048 and in the Decisions on Motions in Interference No. 106,115.

        In its October 15th reply, CVC directed its counterargument to ToolGen’s “belated” attempt (in its view) to authenticate Dr. Carroll’s YouTube video with reference to ToolGen Exhibit Nos. 1614 (the Innovative Genomics Institute website, Innovative Genomics Institute) and 1615 (Opening Screen of Ex. 1283 (Dana Carroll, Issues in CRISPR-Cas Editing, YOUTUBE, 32:42–32:57 (Nov. 4, 2017)). The time to authenticate was August 5, 2021 (in response to CVC’s timely objection) and the Board should not permit ToolGen to supplement its evidence with these attempts to corroborate, CVC argued. CVC also rebutted ToolGen’s argument that only 15 seconds of the Carroll lecture were to be excluded, saying that CVC had move to exclude the video “in its entirety” (emphasis in brief). Rather, ToolGen submits a video “excerpt” unauthenticated as to “who excerpted it, and whether it still accurately portrays the original subject matter in its excerpted form” (emphasis in brief).

      • Optis v. Apple, Nokia v. OPPO, and the Risk of Judicial Error

        Law-and-economics literature talks a lot about the risk of error, including the risk of judicial error, as a reason for or against various rules and standards. Error costs, for example, are a standard consideration in the law-and-economics analysis of property rules versus liability rules, as I have discussed, e.g., here. Outside of antitrust law, however, where the balancing of type I (false positive) and type II (false negative) errors has become something of a commonplace, you don’t see courts address the risk of judicial error all that much. (At least, that’s my impression; though I suppose you could argue that anytime a court considers whether to grant a preliminary injunction, its consideration of the potential irreparable harm to the parties if the ruling goes against them is an implicit acknowledgment that its analysis could be wrong. There is no legally cognizable harm, after all, if the court decides correctly.) Anyway, I mention this here because one thing that struck me in the recent decisions by Mr. Justice Meade in Optis Cellular Technology LLC v. Apple Retail UK Limited and by His Honour Judge Hacon in Nokia TechnologiesOy v. Oneplus Technology (Shenzhen) Co., Ltd. both address the risk of judicial error, to some extent, albeit by way of concluding that it isn’t a substantial concern in either case.

      • Nokia reaches 4,000 5G essential patent families milestone

        Nokia recently announced that it has reached the milestone of 4,000 patent families declared as essential to 5G standards. The milestone reflects Nokia’s continued leadership in cellular technology R&D and standardization.

      • Patent Docs: Horizon Medicines LLC v. Alkem Laboratories Ltd. (Fed. Cir. 2021)

        Joint inventorship has been called “one of the muddiest concepts in the muddy metaphysics of patent law” because the “exact parameters of what constitutes joint inventorship are quite difficult to define.” Mueller Brass Co. v. Reading Indus., 352 F. Supp. 1357, 1372 (E.D. Pa. 1972), aff’d, 487 F.3d 1395 (3d Cir. 1983). The consequences of an improper (or improvident) determination of inventorship (and the sometime difficulties that can arise when a change of inventorship is delayed until a patent is being asserted at trial) is illustrated in the Federal Circuit’s recent non-precedential decision in Horizon Medicines LLC v. Alkem Laboratories Ltd.


        And the Federal Circuit dismissed consideration of Horizon’s arguments regarding non-infringement of the ’033 patent as moot in view of their affirmance of the invalidity of the ’033 patent’s asserted claims.

        Regarding the ’451 patent, Horizon argued that the District Court erred in construing the term “comprising” as recited in the claim with regard to the barrier layer limitation to mean “consisting essentially of.” The Federal Circuit rejected this argument, first, because the panel held that Horizon had not established harmful error in its briefing, and second, “the prosecution history of the ’451 patent supports the district court’s construction.” Specifically, the opinion points to “multiple exchanges with the Examiner” where Horizon made amendments to overcome rejections over the prior art that purportedly “focus[ed] on an embodiment of the invention that uses Opadry® White (YS-1-7003) as a barrier layer.” In view of this history the panel found no clear error in the District Court’s construction nor the factual basis for its finding of non-infringement.

      • Rise in tech goods and services calls for Nice reboot: sources

        IP lawyers call for WIPO to revamp the Nice Classification in view of the changing nature of goods and services such as influencer activities

      • FCBA Remote Program on TRIPS and Vaccine Waivers [Ed: Waivers are not enough; cancel all those patents because they kill people; the patent monopolies drive up the price of things developed with the taxpayers' purse]

        The Federal Circuit Bar Association (FCBA) will be offering a remote program entitled “International Innovation and Patents: TRIPS and Vaccine Waivers” on November 18, 2021 from 11:00 am to 12:00 pm (ET).

      • Renewables patents ‘maturing’ as profits decline: in-house [Ed: More laughable greenwashing of patents or patent monopolies just days apart from the same site cautioning about greenwashing]

        In-house counsel in the wind energy sector tell Managing IP how their IP strategies have adapted to a difficult business climate

      • Ireland Launches Intellectual Property And Technology Court And Reforms IP Disputes Procedures [Ed: Stop calling it "IP"; it's a misnomer that deliberately confuses people]

        A new division of Ireland’s Commercial Court dedicated to intellectual property cases and disputes about complex technology has been established under a revised Order 63A of the Rules of the Superior Courts (revised Rules). The new Intellectual Property and Technology List (IP & Technology List), a sub-division of the Commercial Court list, comes into operation on 22 October 2021. Judges will be assigned to the IP &Technology List by the President of the High Court.

        The introduction of the IP & Technology List follows recommendations contained in a report from a review group established under Mr Justice Peter Kelly to review the administration of civil justice in Ireland (Review Group). The Review Group published its Review of the Administration of Civil Justice Report (Report) in October 2020. The Review Group recognised the likely benefits that would result from the introduction of a “specialised intellectual property list”. It also recommended that appropriate resources be made available to ensure that the Irish courts remain an attractive forum for resolving intellectual property (IP) and technology disputes in as timely and cost-effective manner as possible. The revised Rules implement these recommendations.

      • The Patent Slow Dance Trips Up Access to Rx Savings

        The Biologics Price Competition and Innovation Act (BPCIA), passed by Congress in 2010, aimed to streamline the process of getting biosimilar drugs to market by creating an abbreviated approval pathway for these versions of the original high-priced biologic drugs. Given that potential for savings, where has the process gone awry?

        At first glance, BPCIA seems to have worked: Approximately 30 biosimilars have been approved by the FDA since 2015 (bit.ly/2XtPc4U). Unfortunately, at least eight cannot enter the market between two and nine years because of patent litigation and exclusivity.

      • Update on European PlantLab patent after objections [Ed: EPO granting loads of fake patents, including some on animals, seeds, plants, and whatnot...]

        The years-long dispute between Certhon and PlantLab has come to an end now that the European Patent Office has revoked PlantLab’s European patent. PlantLab’s patent EP2348841 was directed to the application of LED lighting in climate chambers in combination with controlled leaf and root heating. Certhon argued at the European Patent Office that the technology on which the European patent is based has been general prior art since the 1990s and does not contain any new techniques. The European Patent Office reversed the decision because of the patent “not being inventive.”

        The dispute between Certhon and PlantLab did not only play out at the European Patent Office; PlantLab initiated several proceedings before the Court of Justice The Hague over the years, all of them in connection with PlantLab’s claim that Certhon was infringing the European patent (and the Dutch patent NL2002091 derived from it). Back in May 2018, the Court of Justice The Hague ruled that Certhon did not infringe either of PlantLab’s patents, and this judgment was upheld in the appeal initiated by PlantLab against this judgment of the Court of Justice The Hague. The Hague Court of Appeal also ruled that Certhon did not infringe the PlantLab patents.


        Leon van Duijn of PlantLab: “On 10 November, the EPO found that one claim of the six of the patent was not sufficiently new, so, unfortunately, the patent has now expired as a whole. The method of working, however, was found to be novel. The trajectory of the first PlantLab Indoor Farming patent in Europe will now be continued. This first patent is only one of the patents that PlantLab has in its portfolio. An application (divisional of the first patent) is pending at the EPO that will also secure the PlantLab IP. This also has the same priority date (October 13, 2008). We expect that a final decision on this Indoor Farming patent status will be made in the coming year.”

      • Webinar on Examiner Procrastination at USPTO [Ed: As if the USPTO is supposed to be indebted to corporations and lawyers looking to secure monopolies...]

        Juristat will offer a one-hour webinar entitled “Examiner Procrastination at the USPTO: How End-Loading Impacts Your Organization” on November 17, 2021 from 1:00 to 2:00 pm (ET).

      • Apple’s Self-Driving Electric Car To Arrive In 2025
      • O’Malley to pursue patent policy work after Federal Circuit [Ed: Sounds like a lobbying career; the patent maximalists lobby offers much money for corrupt officials looking to undermine science end law (ask Mr. Coons)]

        In an exclusive interview, the circuit judge says she might promote the importance of the patent system and serve on some boards after she leaves in March

      • Essential Information On Confidentiality [Ed: Dehns is just a den of liars, e.g. lying about the UPC for years before realising that lying was bad for the lawyers and the law firm; in this case, they want you to think confidentiality is possible without end-to-end encryption, which no law firm really uses (they're clueless and careless)]

        Anybody to whom you disclose your invention must agree in advance that it is confidential and that the information will not be used by them or passed on. Outside an immediate circle of family and possibly friends, you should have a written confidentiality agreement signed. The safest thing is to limit disclosures strictly until a patent application has been filed.

        If there have already been disclosures of your invention, you should give us details of those. In many cases they may be treated as confidential in any event but we need to assess the situation. Even if patent protection cannot be obtained in the UK or elsewhere in Europe, there will be other countries where it may be possible. One of those is the United States, where a patent application can be filed up to a year after your own disclosures.

      • Cure Pharmaceutical wins patent approval for fast-dissolving drug delivery platform

        The U.S. Patent Office (USPTO) provided notification to Cure that U.S. Patent No. 11,179,331 (the ’331 patent) is set to issue on November 23, 2021. The ‘331 patent (“Oral Soluble Film Containing Sildenafil Citrate”) covers Curefilm blue.

      • Software Patents

        • Patent Absurdity: A case when ignorance is the best policy

          If there is one legal issue that ought to be taught to all software engineers, it is, “Don’t read patents!” I am sure that the company lawyer pointed out that had you not read the patent and violated it, the penalty would be much lower than if you had read the patent, and accidentally violated it. It is trivially easy to accidentally violate a software patent because, of course, lawyers write such patents to be overly broad, and thereby set traps for the unwary coder.

        • SAP patent not inventive enough to get legal protection, judge rules

          An SAP patent was not “inventive enough” to be legally binding, according to a US judge in an intellectual property case which also saw Teradata’s claim in the dispute reduced.

          The federal judge in California last week trimmed down claims from both sides of an ongoing dispute over a joint venture the firms entered into back in 2008.

          Teradata alleged that the German software company used the JV to try to access the US company’s intellectual property and build its HANA in-memory database, which it would try to get its customers to use, according to a 2018 filing at the US District Court for the Northern District of California.

    • Trademarks

      • New Stricter Rules For Domain Name Registration In Denmark

        On 6 September 2021, Denmark introduced new, stricter rules for registrants of ‘.dk’ domain names. If domain name registrants do not keep their contact information up-to-date, all of the registrants’ domain names may risk getting suspended and deleted. Secondly, ‘Registrar Management’ has been introduced. A registrant can hereby allow a registrar to manage the domain name administration. Thirdly, higher prices have been introduced.

      • Different Types Of Trademarks In Bulgaria And The EU – What Are The Options To Represent Your Brand? [Ed: Who even applies for trademarks in Bulgaria (other than locals)? Currently their system is a mess.]

        The registration of a trademark is one of the most important steps in the development of a brand. A registered trademark gives its owner the right to be the exclusive user of a given sign in relation to the goods and services for which it has been registered. The trademark owner’s monopoly over the brand, provides an advantage over the competition, as well as a powerful tool to counteract imitators and infringers.

        If a business needs trademark protection in Bulgaria, this can generally be achieved via registering a Bulgarian trademark, or via registering an European Union trademark (as EU trademarks are also valid in Bulgaria.

      • Trademark Filings Were Up in 2020, as Companies Brought New Products to Market [Ed: Celebrating nothing but a bunch of words and logos? Or a bunch of lawyers making money from things that do not actually exist except in paperwork?]

        The World Intellectual Property Office’s latest research shows that despite the onset and continued impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, companies have continued to offer up new goods and services, and seek out trademark registrations for the corresponding branding. Based on data supplied by 150 national and regional authorities, the Geneva-based WIPO revealed in its recently-released 2021 World Intellectual Property Indicators Report that an estimated 13.4 million trademark applications for registration covering a total of 17.2 million classes of goods/services were filed worldwide in 2020, up 16.5 percent from the number of applications filed during pre-pandemic 2019.

      • Vans Accuses Walmart of “Escalating Infringement Campaign” in New Trademark Case

        In the latest legal battle over footwear, Vans is accusing Walmart of embarking on “an escalating campaign to knock off virtually all of [its] bestselling shoes” and running afoul of its trademark rights in the process. In the complaint that they filed in a California federal court on Monday, Vans and its parent company VF Corp. assert that in light of the fact that Walmart is not an authorized retailer of Vans and thanks to the “tremendous value” tied to Vans’ many well-known trademarks, Walmart “started shamelessly selling copycat shoes in a direct effort to confuse consumers, unlawfully siphon sales from Vans, and intentionally damage Vans’ valuable intellectual property rights.”


        For some larger context, the case (and Walmart’s alleged infringement spree) comes as the retail titan, which has solidly held the title of the largest retailer in the world for decades, is looking to bolster its offerings – and its e-commerce presence – in an attempt to compete with rival Amazon and also to stay in stride with digitally-connected consumers. This quest has seen Walmart endeavoring to amass a larger piece of the mainstream apparel and accessories market, including by way of M&A activity and private labels, such as the ones at issue in this case, as well as ones that has been launching with the help of famous faces. “We are in the process of building these brands that have their own DNA,” Denise Incandela, Walmart’s EVP, Apparel Division and Private Brands, said back in 2019 about the retailer’s increased activity on the private label front. “We are keen on building out great quality products at an exceptional value.”

        Beyond that, Walmart has also doubled-down on its third-party marketplace, which grew to an estimated 70,000 sellers in 2020, per Reuters, “fueled by a surge in online shopping due to the Covid-19 pandemic and a series of investments in technology and vendor relationships.” Data firm Marketplace Pulse reported earlier this year that it expects growth in the number of sellers on Walmart’s marketplace to surge by 146 percent by the end of 2022.

      • Yeezy, Walmart in Settlement Talks in Trademark Opposition Fight

        Yeezy LLC and Walmart have put proceedings in a fight over their respective sun burst logos on hold temporarily, with the Kanye West-owned fashion brand and the American retail behemoth telling the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (“TTAB”) that they are “actively engaged” in settlement negotiations. In a filing on November 11, the TTAB granted Yeezy’s recent motion to suspend the opposition proceedings for 60 days, giving the two companies time to potentially work out their differences in the matter that Walmart initiated this spring in a quest to block Yeezy from registering a similar sun rays graphic.

        The suspension of the opposition proceedings comes on the heels of Yeezy filing its answer to Walmart’s amended notice of opposition, in which the Bentonville, Arkansas-based giant claims that “it will be damaged by registration of [Yeezy’s] mark” – a sun burst mark that Yeezy claims that it intends to use on clothing and retail store services, and musical sound recordings and streaming to hotel services and the construction of “non-metal modular homes,” among other things, given its use of a similar mark since at least 2007.

      • Around the IP Blogs

        Walmart (again) and Kanye West are reaching an agreement. The supermarket titan and the rapper are showing negotiating skills at their finest.

      • INTA Annual Meeting focuses on diversity and trademark future; EUIPO offers best practices for payment services; ‘Banksy of trademarks’ retires; and much more [Ed: EUIPO propaganda rag misuses “diversity” to distract from the abuses]

        Everything we covered on WTR over the past seven days – and all you need to know from the world of trademarks to set yourself up for the start of another busy week.

      • Madrid Working Group meeting

        Members of the MARQUES International Trade Mark Law and Practice Team are taking part in the Working Group on the Legal Development of the Madrid System for the International Registration of Marks this week.

        The Team is represented by Chair Jessica Le Gros, as well as Tove Graulund, Gaving Stenton and Paola Tessarolo.

        The meeting, which lasts from Monday to Wednesday, is in hybrid format and will deal with important topics such as the calculations of time limits to respond to provisional refusal and the reduction of dependency period for the basic mark.

      • Doom’s creator goes after “Doomscroll” [Ed: Doom is a longstanding dictionary word with Latin roots I believe... nobody should 'own' it.]

        Metal guitarist thinks Doomscroll is a great name for a band. Id Software disagrees.

        Dustin Mitchell was scanning the local news one day when inspiration struck in an unlikely article. The report was on a woman who, in a fit of QAnon mania, had destroyed a display of face masks at a Scottsdale, Arizona, Target store. The woman later explained what brought her to that point: “All I did was doomscroll,” she said, referring to her voracious consumption of disastrous news on social media. Something in Mitchell clicked.

      • Hackaday Links: November 21, 2021 | Hackaday

        And finally, it seems like someone over at Id Software is a bit confused. The story began when a metal guitarist named Dustin Mitchell stumbled across the term “doomscroll” and decided that it would make a great name for a progressive thrash metal band. After diligently filing a trademark application with the US Patent and Trademark Office, he got an email from an attorney for Id saying they were going to challenge the trademark, apparently because they feel like it will cause confusion with their flagship DOOM franchise. It’s hard to see how anyone who lived through the doomscrolling years of 2020 and 2021 is going to be confused by a thrash metal band and a 30-year-old video game, but we suppose that’s not the point when you’re an attorney. Trademark trolls gonna troll, after all.

    • Copyrights

      • Copyright case law of the German Bundesgerichtshof 2015 – 2019 – Part 1 of 4: Definition of a work, authorship and moral rights

        Germany has always had an extensive judicial practice in copyright law. Usually, judges with a specialist knowledge of copyright law issue the decisions because among German courts, decision making bodies specialised in copyright law have been created. There is even one senate at the highest German civil court, the German Federal Court of Justice (BGH), which has copyright law as one of its specialist areas. The case law of that copyright law senate of the BGH from 2015 to 2019 is summarised below. An English translation of the relevant statutory provisions from the German Copyright Act (UrhG) can be found here. The decision practice of the BGH in 2020 will be described separately in a later article.

      • The Future of Open Webinar Recap & Recording

        Earlier this year, Creative Commons announced that four working groups of the Creative Commons Copyright Platform would examine policy issues affecting the open ecosystem from a global perspective: (1) artificial intelligence and open content; (2) platform liability; (3) copyright exceptions and limitations; and (4) the ethics of open sharing.

        The CC Copyright Platform was established as a discussion space to strategize on copyright reform as a complementary action to developing and stewarding CC licenses. Over the last few months, each working group has discussed, researched and dissected these issues, and produced four Position Papers encapsulating their outcomes, available now on the CC Medium Publication.

        At ‘The Future of Open’ webinar, hosted on 9 November 2021, the four working group leads presented their work to CC Global Network members, practitioners, policymakers and the general public. Speakers at the webinar included: Catherine Stihler, CEO, Creative Commons (Welcome Remarks), Brigitte Vézina, Director of Policy, Open Culture, and GLAM, Creative Commons (Moderator), Max Mahmoud Wardeh, WG 1 Lead (Artificial Intelligence and Open Content), Emine Yildirim, WG 2 Lead (Internet Platform Liability), André Houang, WG 3 Lead (copyright exceptions and limitations), Josie Fraser, WG 4 Lead (the ethics of open sharing). Below you will find the webinar recording, summaries of the four papers, and links to read them.

      • 21 for 2021: Exceptions

        the 21 for 2021 project, a CREATe project within the AHRC Creative Industries Policy and Evidence Centre (PEC). The 21 for 2021 project offers a synthesis of empirical evidence catalogued on the Copyright Evidence Portal, answering 21 topical copyright questions for the 21st century. In this post, Bartolomeo Meletti (Creative Director, CREATe) explores the empirical evidence on copyright exceptions.


        This blog offers a synthesis of the empirical evidence on exceptions catalogued on the Copyright Evidence Portal, with a view to suggesting potential directions for future research.

      • EUIPO offers payment processors anti-counterfeiting blueprint [Ed: EUIPO and payment processors, like processing bribes, which EUIPO did some months ago]
      • Piracy Reporter Retracts Takedown Notices After Misconfiguration Targets Legitimate Sites

        Piracy tracking firm MUSO recently asked Google to remove tens of thousands of non-existing URLs, including those of mainstream sites such as Amazon, Variety, Billboard, the Huffington Post, and ABC News. The company explains that the incorrect DMCA notices are the result of a misconfiguration that has since been addressed. Meanwhile, the company is working with Google to ensure that the incorrect reports are retracted.

[Teaser] Nat Friedman and Alex Graveley “Best Friends”

Posted in Microsoft at 5:50 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Miguel de Icaza on Alex Graveley

Summary: With “many others confirming his connections to Nat,” our source notes, and “pictures of them together on Flickr,” it will be hard to deny the strong connection (the above messages by Miguel de Icaza confirm this goes a long way back)

Microsoft GitHub Exposé — Part VII — Nat Friedman, as GitHub CEO, Had a Plan of Defrauding Microsoft Shareholders

Posted in Deception, Fraud, Free/Libre Software, GPL, Microsoft at 4:26 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Series parts:

  1. Microsoft GitHub Exposé — Part I — Inside a Den of Corruption and Misogynists
  2. Microsoft GitHub Exposé — Part II — The Campaign Against GPL Compliance and War on Copyleft Enforcement
  3. Microsoft GitHub Exposé — Part III — A Story of Plagiarism and Likely Securities Fraud
  4. Microsoft GitHub Exposé — Part IV — Mr. MobileCoin: From Mono to Plagiarism… and to Unprecedented GPL Violations at GitHub (Microsoft)
  5. Microsoft GitHub Exposé — Part V — Why Nat Friedman is Leaving GitHub
  6. Microsoft GitHub Exposé — Part VI — The Media Has Mischaracterised Nat Friedman’s Departure (Effective Now)
  7. YOU ARE HERE ☞ Nat Friedman, as GitHub CEO, Had a Plan of Defrauding Microsoft Shareholders

GitHub: Where everything comes to die

Summary: The son of a financial tycoon probably engaged in embezzlement and maybe securities fraud; and this isn’t even the worst scandal, which directly impacts Free software

THE new CEO of GitHub has been on the job for only a week (as of today). As we explained in the past pair of parts, it’s safe to assume that ongoing scandals (not told by the press; it’s aware, but it’s suppressing publication) played a considerable role in that. This choice of CEO probably indicates where the company is going (more proprietary vertical integration) and was probably made in a rush, almost on the spot.

In later parts we’ll detail (with some evidence) the role played by the press, keeping these scandals under wraps by falsely assuming that women are liars and accused men need to be protected from embarrassment. Among the key culprits: Vox, Bloomberg, and Buzzfeed. What good are media outlets that are looking to appease sponsors and advertisers rather than the audience in need of journalism? What good is a corporate leadership that refuses to understand who it hires?

“In later parts we’ll detail (with some evidence) the role played by the press, keeping these scandals under wraps by falsely assuming that women are liars and accused men need to be protected from embarrassment.”“I don’t want to get involved” is not a legitimate excuse (direct quote by the way). If more information becomes available, we’ll also add some parts about the new CEO and what the past teaches us about the CEO’s future direction at GitHub, which is more like a trap than “free hosting”. As always, we encourage people to leave GitHub. The sooner, the safer. Make exit plans.

Nat Friedman should have known better, especially considering his father’s work. Friedman surely knew how this law works (he could ask dad), but he chose to ignore it; he got greedy (which wasn’t needed; he was very rich to begin with, even well before Microsoft). To put this in the correct context we’ll need to introduce readers, perhaps belatedly, to Friedman’s good friend, whom he used to get very badly drunk with (substance abuse will be the subject of much later parts in this series). The friend’s name is Alex and they’re pretty close. From their very own (still online) record:

Alex Graveley and Nat Friedman in Flickr

Alex Graveley and Nat Friedman

There’s more, but some of it is so old that it’s difficult if not impossible to find now. This pair goes well over a decade back.

We did not want to bring up Alex Graveley (or mention him by name), but that’s essential for those wishing to understand what’s going on. Or his current job title at Microsoft.

According to our source, Alex Graveley and Nat Friedman made a ‘pinky promise’; “he also said that the original plan for Copilot was Alex would start a company and work with Nat behind the scenes to build it to get acquired by Github, which sounds like securities fraud, but I’m not a lawyer…”

“So it seems like Friedman set him up for richness; but at whose expense?”Graveley and Friedman know who the source is, but that does not matter.

So it seems like Friedman set him up for richness; but at whose expense? By funnelling Microsoft shareholders’ money to a friend he likely breached several ethical rules (“make this company; do this thing; I will tell my bosses (Board and CEO of a company called Microsoft) to make this next move and we’ll give you lots of shares”).

If he instructs the employer to pay an old mate, that’s a very big deal. It makes one wonder what technical merit — if any — this thing has. It was acquired by means of nepotism, not really pragmatic interest, then hyped up in the media even though it’s worthless as a tool (some people have demonstrated this point). At Microsoft, they use that to push proprietary IDE (Visual Studio) and teach people not to worry about GPL compliance.

As our source stresses strongly, and more so repeatedly: “The original plan was to have Alex build it as a start up. And then Microsoft would acquire it. Which sounds a bit like fraud.”

“If he instructs the employer to pay an old mate, that’s a very big deal.”Well, that sounds illegal because it is. He’s playing with money that isn’t his own; he’s passing Microsoft shareholders’ capital to a friend, and maybe he can then get kickbacks off of him (one can only guess how the favour can be repaid).

Our source says that “this never happened, even if it was contemplated, [as] Alex was not in any place mentally to do this…” (based on texts, he had booze issues if not other, far more severe issues with heavy narcotics — a subject we set aside for later parts)

The Microsoft modus operandi has long been to attack Free software while giving the false impression that Microsoft means well and is a friend, a “co-pilot”. Don’t fall for it…

Securities fraud was in the books.

Wikipedia defines the term as follows: “Securities fraud, also known as stock fraud and investment fraud, is a deceptive practice in the stock or commodities markets that induces investors to make purchase or sale decisions on the basis of false information, frequently resulting in losses, in violation of securities laws.

“…shareholders ought to know that they may have paid — or fallen — for a weak or defective product, merely for the benefit of the CEO’s friend.”It further notes: “Securities fraud can also include outright theft from investors (embezzlement by stockbrokers), stock manipulation, misstatements on a public company’s financial reports, and lying to corporate auditors. The term encompasses a wide range of other actions, including insider trading, front running and other illegal acts on the trading floor of a stock or commodity exchange.”

Assuming the above was true, as was heard directly by our source, Friedman sought to divert Microsoft shareholders’ money to a friend. Friend-man? Either way, shareholders ought to know that they may have paid — or fallen — for a weak or defective product, merely for the benefit of the CEO’s friend. This isn’t even the sole case of nepotism — a point we shall discuss later.

IRC Proceedings: Sunday, November 21, 2021

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

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