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Links 24/11/2022: Redox OS 0.8.0, Mozilla Turns Privacy Into Product

Posted in News Roundup at 8:48 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • CoryDoctorowPluralistic: 13 Nov 2022 The Framework is the most exciting laptop I’ve ever broken

        From the moment I started using computers, I wanted to help other people use them. I was everyone’s tech support for years, which prepared me for the decade or so when I was a CIO-for-hire. In the early days of the internet, I spent endless hours helping my BBS friends find their way onto the net.

        Helping other people use technology requires humility: you have to want to help them realize their goals, which may be totally unlike your own. You have to listen carefully and take care not to make assumptions about how they “should” use tech. You may be a tech expert, but they are experts on themselves.

        This is a balancing act, because it’s possible to be too deferential to someone else’s needs. As much as other people know about how they want technology to work, if you’re their guide, you have to help them understand how technology will fail.

    • Server

      • TechTargetHow does Kubernetes use etcd?

        Etcd is a lightweight, highly available key-value store accessible to each node in a Kubernetes cluster. Find out how etcd works and learn how to use it inside Kubernetes.

      • TechTargetExplore network plugins for Kubernetes: CNI explained

        With Container Network Interface plugins, IT teams can create and deploy network options for diverse Kubernetes environments. Learn how CNI works and compare top network plugins.

      • TechTargetServer-side WebAssembly prepares for takeoff in 2023

        WebAssembly (Wasm) has been expanding its reach since it began in 2017 as a language for running applications inside web browsers. It began to move beyond the browser in 2019, when Mozilla introduced an open source project called the WebAssembly System Interface (WASI) that provided a framework for WebAssembly apps to access operating system resources. This set the stage for content delivery networks (CDNs) to use WebAssembly to deploy customers’ apps without giving them access to the underlying CDN infrastructure.

      • Computing UKSoftware definition is the next supercomputing step for the Met Office [Ed: Microsoft is trying to 'steal' Linux business by bribing and cheating, as usual. Microsoft does not enhance security in Linux but rather adds back doors.]

        Think of a supercomputer – in greatly simplified terms – as a “great big Linux box”. Partitioning in Linux is “tricky,” said Ewen, and therefore it’s difficult to combine approaches that both meet the needs of the scientific community, and are highly trusted.

      • MedevelOpenSearch: Self-hosted Open-source Headless Search Engine

        OpenSearch is a free self-hosted headless (RESTful) Search engine that you can setup and use privately in your server.

        It is a distributed search and analytics engine based on Apache Lucene. After adding your data to OpenSearch, you can perform full-text searches on it with all the features you might expect: search by field, search multiple indices, boost fields, rank results by score, sort results by field, and aggregate results.

        It is a community-driven project which started as a fork of Elasticsearch and Kibana (The Data visualization tool), after their license changed.

      • MedevelTiefVision Is a Deep-Learning Image Search Engine

        TiefVision is implemented in Torch and Play Framework (Scala version). It currently only supports Linux with CUDA-enabled GPU.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

    • Kernel Space

      • Make Use OfAsahi Linux Issues “Progress Report”, Improves Apple Silicon Support

        The distro has added USB 3.0 support, but speaker support will have to wait. Livestreaming of its coding is a surprise hit on YouTube.

        The Asahi Linux project, a distribution aiming to make a Linux desktop available for Apple Silicon-based Macs, has issued a November 2022 “progress report.”

    • Applications

      • MedevelFreeTTS: Cross-platform Text-To-Speech App

        FreeTTS is a speech synthesis system written entirely in the JavaTM programming language. It is based upon Flite: a small run-time speech synthesis engine developed at Carnegie Mellon University. Flite is derived from the Festival Speech Synthesis System from the University of Edinburgh and the FestVox project from Carnegie Mellon University.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • Make Tech EasierHow to Host a Website in Ubuntu Using Tor – Make Tech Easier

        The Tor network is a revolutionary piece of software. With a single program, it is now possible to browse and view the Web anonymously. This makes Tor an essential tool for users who want to preserve their privacy when browsing a website. It is also possible to use Tor for hosting a local web server online to make it incredibly helpful for privacy-conscious users who want to share information publicly without revealing themselves.

      • Make Use OfHow to Set Up Your Fingerprint Scanner With PAM on Linux

        If you’ve got a fingerprint scanner on your Linux device, you can easily set up fingerprint-based authentication for added security.

        The fingerprint is one of the most common entries for authorization. The use of biometric data for authorization confirms the physical existence of individuals by using an element that is relatively inseparable from them.

        In addition, biometric data provides security to the person by using data specific to almost every individual. Leaving aside the legal usage limits of biometric data, these features highlight the use of fingerprints over other second-factor tools.

        Here’s how you can set up your fingerprint scanner on Linux using PAM (Pluggable Authentication Modules).

      • ID RootHow To Install Jupyter Notebook on Ubuntu 22.04 LTS – idroot

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Jupyter Notebook on Ubuntu 22.04 LTS. For those of you who didn’t know, Jupyter notebook is an open-source and cross-platform application to share code, text, or visual effects with users. The tool can be used with several languages, including Python, Julia, R, Haskell, and Ruby. Its aim is to develop open-source software, open standards, and services for interactive computing across multiple programming languages.

        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 the step-by-step installation of Jupyter Notebook on Ubuntu 22.04 (Jammy Jellyfish). You can follow the same instructions for Ubuntu 18.04, 16.04, and any other Debian-based distribution like Linux Mint.

      • Linux Made SimpleHow to install Super Heroes Marvel y DC on a Chromebook

        Today we are looking at how to install Super Heroes Marvel y DC on a Chromebook.

        If you have any questions, please contact us via a Rumble comment and we would be happy to assist you!

        This tutorial will only work on Chromebooks with an Intel or AMD CPU (with Linux Apps Support) and not those with an ARM64 architecture CPU.

      • Barry KaulerFix top-level /.config and /.local at startup

        In EasyOS 4.5.1 (and earlier), after bootup you will see top-level folders /.config and /.local, with folders and files inside them. This should not be happening; they should be created under /root

        There is a misconfiguration somehow, HOME=’/’ when enter /etc/rc.d/rc.sysinit, whereas it should be HOME=’/root’

      • OSTechNixFix NTFS Partition Is In An Unsafe State Error In Linux – OSTechNix

        The other day I booted a Windows 10 system with Ubuntu live cd. When I tried to mount a Windows partition from the Linux live cd environment, the windows partition refused to mount in read/write mode and displayed this error – NTFS partition is in an unsafe state.

      • Make Use OfHow to Watch YouTube Videos in the Linux Terminal With ytfzf

        You don’t have to leave the comfort of your Linux terminal to watch YouTube videos. ytfzf makes it easier to search YouTube from the command line.

        It’s no secret that Linux keyboard warriors spend their lives in the terminal, only surfacing to load a browser and watch their favorite Taylor Swift music video on YouTube.

        With ytfzf, you can search YouTube videos from your terminal and stream them using a lightweight media player. You’d never need to open a browser to watch YouTube on Linux again!

      • FOSSLifeIntroduction to Linux Log Management

        In addition to failures, logs contain warnings, which can alert you about a system that, although it can appear to be working correctly, might have subtle issues or poor performance. (Remember, you want high-performance computing, not meh-performance computing.) Logs contain information about successful logins, failed logins, and any root access or use of sudo, which allows you to look for anything unexpected or abnormal.

        Beyond errors and warnings, looking for abnormal behavior is a primary goal of examining logs. Although written in 1989, The Cuckoo’s Egg by Clifford Stoll offers a glimpse of how abnormal behavior or “gaps” in logs can lead to the discovery of compromised systems. The book is not necessarily a warning for high-performance computing (HPC) administrators, but rather a reinforcement of good administrative behavior.

      • Getting started with Linkerd

        If you’ve done anything in the Kubernetes space in recent years, you’ve most likely come across the words “Service Mesh”. It’s backed by a set of mature technologies that provides cross-cutting networking, security, infrastructure capabilities to be used by workloads running in Kubernetes in a manner that is transparent to the actual workload. This abstraction enables application developers to not worry about building in otherwise sophisticated capabilities for networking, routing, circuit-breaking and security, and simply rely on the services offered by the service mesh.

        In this post, I’ll be covering Linkerd, which is an alternative to Istio. It has gone through a significant re-write when it transitioned from the JVM to a Go-based Control Plane and a Rust-based Data Plane a few years back and is now a part of the CNCF and is backed by Buoyant. It has proven itself widely for use in production workloads and has a healthy community and release cadence.

      • Secret command Google doesn’t want you to know — mina86.com

        If you’ve travelled abroad you might have noticed Google tries to be helpful and uses language of the region you’re in on its websites. It doesn’t matter that your operating system is in, say, Spanish; Google Search will still use Portuguese if you happen to be in Brazil.

    • Games

      • Godot EngineGodot Engine – Dev snapshot: Godot 4.0 beta 6

        Godot 4.0 has been in beta for a little over two months, and the overall feature completeness, stability and usability have improved a lot during that time.

        We’ve had beta snapshots every other week, and now we’ve decided to accelerate the cadence to release a new snapshot every week, to get even faster feedback on our bugfixes, and the potential regressions they may introduce.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • Nate GrahamA better fundraising platform – Adventures in Linux and KDE

          Currently our small-donor donation page is https://kde.org/community/donations, which lets you make a single one-time donation. To make a recurring donation, you have to visit https://relate.kde.org, which is less user-friendly, and it’s always struck me as odd to have these split up in two locations.

          Well, KDE is getting a much better donation system powered by Donorbox, which I hope will turbocharge our fundraising! It’s very user-friendly and allows you to easily make recurring donations, which is important. We already set this up for the Kdenlive fundraiser, and it was a smash hit, raising 100% of the funds in the first month of the 3-month campaign. That fundraiser has since moved into stretch goals!

          We’ve now done it again, rolling out a Donorbox-powered donation UI on https://kde.org/bluefriday, our tongue-in-cheek anti-black-friday fundraiser, which will become a general end-of-year campaign. This work was done by members of KDE’s promo team and fundraising working group, principally Lays Rodrigues, Carl Schwan, and Paul Brown. And so far the response has been huge! The fundraiser opened yesterday, and at the time of publication, it’s already collected 530€ from 28 generous donors! And after the new year, the current plan is to continue to use the Donorbox-powered UI for all small donations.

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

  • Distributions and Operating Systems

    • New Releases

      • Linux MagazineAlpine Linux 3.17 Now Available to the General Public

        The developers of Alpine Linux have officially announced the release of the latest version of the security-focused Linux distribution.

        The first Alpine Linux release in the 3.17 stable series is now available for download and finally adds Rust on all supported platforms. The distribution ships with either GNOME 43 or KDE Plasma 5.26 and enjoys all of the new features and fixes found in both of those desktop environments.

        As for what’s new in Alpine Linux itself, the list includes Bash 5.2, GCC 12, Kea 2.2, OpenSSL 3.0, Perl 5.36, PostgreSQL 15, Node.js 18.12, Ceph 17.2, Go 1.19, Rust 1.64, and .NET 7.0.100. OpenSSL also is available with the openssl1.1-compat package.

        It should be noted that PHP 8.0 has been officially deprecated and ISC Kea was moved to the main repository for long time support, whereas ISC dhcp was moved to the community repository. With this move, users are now encouraged to make the switch from dhcpd to Kea.

        You can read more about Alpine Linux 3.17 in the official release notes and download an ISO for installation from the download page for the following architectures: 64-bit (x86_64), AArch64 (ARM64), ARMv7, 32-bit (x86), PowerPC 64-bit Little Endian (ppc64le), and IBM System z (s390x).

      • Redox OS 0.8.0 – Redox – Your Next(Gen) OS

        We have a lot to show since the 0.7.0 release! This release, care has been taken to ensure real hardware is working, i686 support has been added, features like audio and preliminary multi-display support have been enabled, and the boot and install infrastructure has been simplified and made more robust. I highly recommend skimming through the changes listed below before jumping into the images, if you want more details. It is also recommended to read through the Redox OS book if you want more information on how to build and use Redox OS.

        For this release, I would like to personally thank Ron Williams, who goes by rw_van in the Redox OS chat and GitLab. Ron has provided many valuable contributions for this release, including vast updates to the book, support for building with podman, improvements to the build infrastructure, performing hardware testing, and more. I would also like to thank our Redox OS Summer of Code (RSoC) students, whose work was detailed in prior news posts and much of this work is included in this release. Finally, I would like to thank the donors to Redox OS, for it is their contributions that keep our RSoC program and our infrastructure running. Please consider donating to Redox OS using the links on the Donate page!

        In addition to the exciting technical changes, there is also organizational news to share. Redox OS received a donation of $400,000 (USD). This donation was anonymous, and the way in which it was made anonymous has made it not possible to use at this time. Presently, I am working with a legal team on determining specifically how the OFAC sanctions on Tornado Cash apply to this donation, which was made through Tornado Cash. At present, as I am a US citizen, I have blocked the transfer of this donation in order to comply with potential OFAC sanctions. In the event that I am allowed to use this donation, I will describe in another news post what it means for Redox OS.

    • Fedora Family / IBM

      • LinuxiacFirst Look at the Upcoming Fedora Web-Based Installer

        Fedora announced the first public preview of the new web-based Anaconda Installer, significantly simplifying the installation process.

        Anaconda is a free and open-source system installer for Linux distributions mainly used by Red Hat Enterprise Linux, Fedora, CentOS, and RHEL-based derivatives such as AlmaLinux, Rocky Linux, Oracle Linux, and others.

      • CentOSCentOS Community Newsletter, November 2022 – Blog.CentOS.org

        CentOS Connect has been announced as a FOSDEM Fringe event. This free event takes place in Brussels on February 3, 2023, the day before FOSDEM. If you’re attending FOSDEM, join us at CentOS Connect to learn about CentOS and connect with the people who work on it.

    • Mobile Systems/Mobile Applications

  • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

    • Web Browsers/Web Servers

      • Mozilla

        • EngadgetMozilla bundles its VPN and email relay services for $7 per month [Ed: Mozilla is not a privacy company]

          Mozilla’s privacy services might be more compelling if you were previously on the fence. The company now offers its virtual private network (VPN) and Firefox Relay Premium together in a $7 per month bundle when you pay for an annual subscription. Given that the VPN normally costs $5 per month (on a similar yearly basis) by itself, this may be a solid choice if you want more than the fundamentals.

          The VPN secures traffic for up to five devices, with servers in over 30 countries, no logging and perks like “multi-hop” access that uses more than one server to further protect your connection. However, Firefox Relay may be more intriguing. You get both email aliases to hide your real accounts as well as phone number masking to prevent your digits reaching spammers and hackers. You might not worry so much that signing up for a service will eventually lead to a privacy breach.

        • MozillaNew phone? Give yourself the gift of privacy with these 5 tips

          So you’ve unboxed a shiny new phone, peeled the sticker off the screen and transferred your data. If you’re reading this, you’ve made the smart decision to take another important step: Setting up your device for privacy and security.

    • SaaS/Back End/Databases

      • PostgreSQLPostgreSQL: PostgreSQL JDBC 42.5.1, 42.4.3, 42.3.8, 42.2.27.jre7 Security update for CVE-2022-41946

        The PostgreSQL JDBC team have released 42.5.1, 42.4.3, 42.3.8, 42.2.27.jre7 to address a security issue: CVE-2022-41946. (Note there is no fix for 42.2.26.jre6 see the advisory for workarounds) This is only an issue if you are using PreparedStatement.setText() or PreparedStatement.setBytea() where the String or bytea argument is larger than 51200 bytes. At which point the driver will buffer to disk. To do this it creates a temporary file which in previous versions could be read by other users on the client system. Note this only effects unix like systems. See the security advisory for the details.

    • FSF

    • Programming/Development

      • Trail Of BitsWe’re streamers now | Trail of Bits Blog

        We’ll share detailed technical presentations on fuzzing smart contracts, and guide attendees to write invariants for them in our first six workshops. Engineers will go over fuzzer setup, how to identify invariants—from simple to complex—and how to translate these invariants into code.

      • How to make a scatterplot in R | R (for ecology)

        Now that you’ve learned the very basics of plotting from our earlier tutorial on making your very first plot in R, this blog post will teach you how to customize your scatterplots to make them look better. If you want to take this even a step further, check out my step-by-step tutorial introduction to publication-quality scatterplots.

      • Python

      • Rust

        • SDTimesRust’s addition to the Linux kernel seen as “enormous vote of confidence” in the language – SD Times

          The release candidate for the latest version of the Linux kernel was announced last month, and one of the highlights in the release notes for Linux 6.1 is the inclusion of the initial infrastructure for adding Rust as a language.

          Rust has been growing steadily in popularity through the years, and though according to the 2022 Stack Overflow Developer Survey 9 percent of developers use it, it has spent seven years in the top spot for “most loved” language. In this year’s survey almost 87% of developers said they love Rust, which is about 10 percentage points higher than the second-most loved language, Elixir.

  • Leftovers

    • TediumStove Top History: How Instant Stuffing Came to Dominate Dinner

      If you’re reading this right now and you’re in the U.S., you’re probably thinking about two things: One, can we talk about something other than technology for five minutes? And two, what time is Thanksgiving dinner? The answer to the first is this newsletter, and the answer to the second is very much sometime Thursday. Helping to speed the process for millions of homes is a mix that comes in a box that has simplified one of the most complicated parts of Thanksgiving dinner—the stuffing. Today’s Tedium talks about Stove Top, which celebrates its 50th anniversary this year, and other stuff about stuffing innovation.

    • Linux Foundation

    • Security

      • LWNSecurity updates for Wednesday [LWN.net]

        Security updates have been issued by Debian (heimdal, libarchive, and nginx), Fedora (varnish-modules and xterm), Red Hat (firefox), Scientific Linux (firefox, hsqldb, and thunderbird), SUSE (Botan, colord, containerized-data-importer, ffmpeg-4, java-1_8_0-ibm, krb5, nginx, redis, strongswan, tomcat, and xtrabackup), and Ubuntu (apr-util, freerdp2, and sysstat).

      • QSB-087: Qrexec: Injection of unsanitized data into log output | Qubes OS

        We have just published Qubes Security Bulletin (QSB) 087: Qrexec: Injection of unsanitized data into log output. The text of this QSB is reproduced below. This QSB and its accompanying signatures will always be available in the Qubes Security Pack (qubes-secpack). More information about QSBs, including a complete historical list, is available here.

      • Computing UKHive ransomware actors have amassed $100m from 1,300 businesses: CIS [Ed: Microsoft Windows TCO]

        Hive’s ransomware affiliates have been seen attacking vulnerabilities in Microsoft Exchange Server and Fortinet VPNs

      • The RecordRansomware incidents now make up majority of British government’s crisis management ‘Cobra’ meetings – The Record by Recorded Future [Ed: Microsoft Windows TCO]

        Ransomware incidents in the United Kingdom are now so impactful that the majority of the British governments recent Cobra crisis management meetings have been convened in response to them rather than other emergencies.

      • SANSInfoSec Handlers Diary Blog – SANS Internet Storm Center

        In this diary, we are assuming PC-like devices with state-of-the-art disk encryption (full disk encryption, FDE) and a “normal” desktop OS (Linux, Windows, …).

      • Use After Free vulnerability in Linux Kernel allows Privilege Escalation. Patch your kernel

        Redhat has just just published a risk advisory about a vulnerability in the Linux Kernel that allows for local privilege escalation. This vulnerability is tracked as CVE-2022-3910 (CVSS score: 7.4). This vulnerability is referred to be a use-after-free problem, and it can be found in io uring on the Update of Reference Count. io uring is an interface for making system calls in Linux. It made its debut for the very first time in the mainline Linux Kernel version 5.1 in the year 2019. It gives an application the ability to start system calls that may be carried out in an asynchronous manner.

    • Environment

      • Michael West MediaControversial coal mine wins water licence, former pollie Joel Fitzgibbon joins the board – Michael West

        For a quarter of a century Joel Fitzgibbon was Labor’s man in the coal-mining electorate of Hunter. Now he’s the ‘‘ideal appointment’’ to the board of a company with a large stake in New Hope’s controversial New Acland coal mine. Callum Foote reports.

        It was the annual general meeting of coal investor Brickworks, in the highly un-industrial surroundings of The Establishment, a swanky bistro in George Street, Sydney.
        An AGM is a time for questions. But not every question was granted an answer.

        Former pro-coal Labor backbencher Joel Fitzgibbon refused to answer questions regarding his new role with coal investor Brickworks.

        And the man who hired him, billionaire Robert Millner, declined to comment on whether Fitzgibbon was involved in lobbying efforts for the New Acland coal mine.

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • AccessNowElon Musk Twitter takeover: digital safety tips and resources

        In the weeks since tech billionaire Elon Musk completed his acquisition of Twitter, we’ve seen plenty to worry about. Among Musk’s most troubling moves: cutting staff from its trust and security workforce. Activists around the world are nervous, and with good reason. If you choose to stay on Twitter, migrate to another platform, or maintain accounts on multiple platforms, it’s imperative you take steps to increase your digital safety.

        To help you do that, our Digital Security Helpline, a free 24/7 digital safety resource for civil society around the world, has prepared some basic guidelines. But remember: everyone has a unique security profile, and there are no one-size-fits-all solutions for increasing digital safety. If you’re a human rights defender, journalist, or activist, you may need emergency assistance or advice tailored to you and your specific circumstances. If that’s the case, contact us directly.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • [Older] They Crush Our Song for A Reason – The Chris Hedges Report

        August Wilson wrote 10 plays chronicling Black life in the 20th century. His favorite, Joe Turner’s Come and Gone, is set in 1911 in a boarding house in Pittsburgh’s Hill District. The play’s title comes from “Joe Turner’s Blues,” written in 1915 by W. C. Handy. That song refers to a man named Joe Turney, the brother of Peter Turney, who was the governor of Tennessee from 1893 to 1897. Joe Turney transported Black prisoners, chained in a coffle, along the roads from Memphis to the Tennessee State Penitentiary in Nashville. While en route, he handed over some of the convicts, for a commission, to white farmers. The prisoners he leased to the farmers worked for years in a system of convict leasing — slavery by another name.

        In Wilson’s play, Herald Loomis, a convict who worked on Turner’s farm, arrives in Pittsburgh after seven years of bondage with his 11-year-old daughter, Zonia, in search of his wife. He struggles to cope with his trauma. At a boarding house, he meets a conjurer named Bynum Walker, who tells him that, to face and overcome the demons that torment him, he must find his song.

        It is your song, your voice, your history, Walker tells him, which gives you your identity and your freedom. And your song, Walker tells him, is what the white ruling class seeks to eradicate.

    • Monopolies

      • CCIAWho is meant to be protected by antitrust law and policy? – Disruptive Competition Project

        The focus of contemporary competition policy debates is shifting back to the first principles, asking: “What are we trying to do? What is the objective of antitrust?” Enforcers and some legislators in the U.S. are suggesting a shift away from consumers to a completely different approach that focuses on exerting power over specific companies. This change of approach is also gaining traction in some U.S. states as several state Attorneys General have recently sued technology companies alleging violation of antitrust laws without considering the impact on consumers of the actual conduct or the proposed remedy. California Attorney General (AG) Rob Bonta recently filed a civil antitrust and unfair competition lawsuit claiming that Amazon’s pricing practices prevent retailers from offering lower prices than the ones they offer at Amazon’s store. The California case mirrors the suit that DC AG Karl Racine filed on behalf of the District of Columbia that also alleged that Amazon has too much control over how much outside vendors can charge for their products. However, the judgment issued by the DC Superior Court established not only that the DC AG’s office could not support its allegations against Amazon, but that the Amazon practices in question actually benefit consumers. These recent cases raise the important question: who is antitrust supposed to protect?

        For the last four decades, enforcers and courts have agreed that antitrust law and policy should protect consumer welfare, by promoting competition rather than competitors. Importantly, the consumer welfare standard in the 1970s was developed in response to the belief that previous U.S. antitrust policy had become too subjective and overly aggressive by focusing on the size of companies regardless of the effect on consumers. With enforcers and courts embracing the consumer welfare standard, it has served as the backbone of U.S. and global antitrust policy ever since, as also indicated by the International Competition Network (ICN) and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). As a result, the purpose of antitrust law has been to ensure economic efficiency delivering lower prices, promoting innovation, and increasing benefits for consumers. For the last decades, the message has been clear – consumers are the ones to be protected by antitrust efforts. This approach has led to astounding levels of innovation, and it is not by coincidence that numerous digital and connected services have been able to provide consumers and businesses the tremendous benefits that they enjoy today.

        • Copyrights

          • Michael GeistFreedom of Expression is Not A Loophole: Responding to the Government’s Inaccurate Defence of Mandated Payments for Links in Bill C-18 – Michael Geist

            The Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage opened its clause-by-clause review of Bill C-18 on Friday with some extensive questions about the scope of coverage of the bill and the opportunity to vote on several amendments. The meeting finally provided the chance to ask department officials for their views on key questions, including whether the government believes that services such as Reddit and Twitter are caught by the law (the answer was yes they are digital news intermediaries, but may not be sufficiently dominant to be required to negotiate mandate payments). The most important moment in the hearing came toward the end, when Conservative MP Rachael Thomas moved an amendment to exclude links from the scope of the definition of news content. That approach would still ensure that news publishers are covered for uses of their work such as republication (which is precisely what most would envision) but safeguard the foundation of the free flow of information on the Internet.

            As I’ve argued elsewhere, the government’s current approach ascribes value to links where there isn’t any, regulates which platforms must pay in order to permit expression from their users, and dictates which sources are entitled to compensation. The committee did not have time to vote on the amendment, but Liberal MP Chris Bittle offered up the government’s perspective, which is that it will vote against the proposal, confirming that it intends to include links within the scope of the legislation. That confirmation is not surprising, but it is notable, since advocates of the bill have insisted – despite a plain reading of the bill – that it does not require payments for links. That argument seemingly rests on the claim that payments will involve compensation for all links, rather than individual ones, which is a distinction without a real difference.

  • Gemini* and Gopher

    • Personal

      • 🔤SpellBinding: ACEYLMH Wordo: TAKEN
      • People Are Actually Rational

        We’re all human (not you, search engine bot. Go away!), and humans are rational within their constraints. Initially I was going to title this post “Respect Legacy”, but it occurred to me that it applies equally to the present.

        Let me start with an anecdote. I had a very talented project manager at one point. We worked in a really big project within higher education, and by the time I joined the project was already a bunch of years old even though it wasn’t in production yet. Needless to say there was a lot of legacy code already. Since the project had gone through a few different phases and the technology landscape had changed radically during those years people would often stumbled over old code and ask why it had been written in that way to begin with.

    • Technical

      • Programming

        • I’m soliciting your advice

          I recently learned Rust. Or at least I’ve learned it roughly as well as a third grader knows how to write novels or do algebra. I’m very much a beginner, but I’ve completed Rustlings, read through most of the book, and even built a terminal application for interacting with the public REST API that my company maintains.

          But, like…what do I actually *do* with this knowledge now? What’s something useful I can do to improve it, beyond just doing a lot more exercises? What’s something useful I can do for myself and for the wider world? I’ve been wracking my brain trying to come up with something, and I just don’t know. For every problem I have as a user of computers, there are already tons of excellent solutions provided by the open source community, and I’m at a place where I’m really happy with everything I use on a daily basis. So I don’t have a personal need that would provide motivation right now.

        • First Release of the Gemroff Markup Language

          The second new program I’ve been working on for a while and finished this month, I’m announcing the release of the Gemroff markup language!

        • GObject Introspection

          When possible, I like to defer technical decisions for as long as possible. For example, if you’re using a standardized language & OS interfaces, you don’t need to pick an actual compiler/interpreter and OS until quite late.

          For example, say I pick Common Lisp and UNIX. The eventual platform will probably be sbcl and Linux, but it doesn’t have to be. Similarly, in CL CFFI is a pseudo-standard FFI that is portable to many compilers. But is there such a thing as an FFI that is portable to many languages?

* Gemini (Primer) links can be opened using Gemini software. It’s like the World Wide Web but a lot lighter.

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  1. Not Tolerating Proprietary 'Bossware' in the Workplace (or at Home in Case of Work-From-Home)

    The company known as Sirius ‘Open Source’ generally rejected… Open Source. Today’s focus was the migration to Slack.

  2. The ISO Delusion: A Stack of Proprietary Junk (Slack) Failing Miserably

    When the company where I worked for nearly 12 years spoke of pragmatism it was merely making excuses to adopt proprietary software at the expense of already-working and functional Free software

  3. Debian 11 on My Main Rig: So Far Mostly OK, But Missing Some Software From Debian 10

    Distributions of GNU/Linux keep urging us to move to the latest, but is the latest always the greatest? On Friday my Debian 10 drive died, so I started moving to Debian 11 on a new drive and here's what that did to my life.

  4. Stigmatising GNU/Linux for Not Withstanding Hardware Failures

    Nowadays "the news" is polluted with a lot of GNU/Linux-hostile nonsense; like with patents, the signal-to-noise ratio is appalling and here we deal with a poor 'report' about "Linux servers" failing to work

  5. Microsofters Inside Sirius 'Open Source'

    Sirius ‘Open Source’ has been employing incompetent managers for years — a sentiment shared among colleagues by the way; today we examine some glaring examples with redacted communications to prove it

  6. Links 29/01/2023: GNOME 43.3 Fixes and Lots About Games

    Links for the day

  7. The Hey Hype Machine

    "Hey Hype" or "Hey Hi" (AI) has been dominating the press lately and a lot of that seems to boil down to paid-for marketing; we need to understand what's truly going on and not be distracted by the substance-less hype

  8. IRC Proceedings: Saturday, January 28, 2023

    IRC logs for Saturday, January 28, 2023

  9. Unmasking AI

    A guest article by Andy Farnell

  10. The ISO Delusion/Sirius Corporation: A 'Tech' Company Run by Non-Technical People

    Sirius ‘Open Source’ was hiring people who brought to the company a culture of redundant tasks and unwanted, even hostile technology; today we continue to tell the story of a company run by the CEO whose friends and acquaintances did severe damage

  11. Links 28/01/2023: Lots of Catching Up (Had Hardware Crash)

    Links for the day

  12. IRC Proceedings: Friday, January 27, 2023

    IRC logs for Friday, January 27, 2023

  13. Microsoft DuckDuckGo Falls to Lowest Share in 2 Years After Being Widely Exposed as Microsoft Proxy, Fake 'Privacy'

    DuckDuckGo, according to this latest data from Statcounter, fell from about 0.71% to just 0.58%; all the gains have been lost amid scandals, such as widespread realisation that DuckDuckGo is a Microsoft informant, curated by Microsoft and hosted by Microsoft (Bing is meanwhile laying off many people, but the media isn’t covering that or barely bothers)

  14. This is What the Microsoft-Sponsored Media Has Been Hyping Up for Weeks (Ahead of Microsoft Layoffs)

    Reprinted with permission from Ryan

  15. [Meme] António Campinos Wants to Be F***ing President Until 2028

    António Campinos insists he will be EPO President for 10 years, i.e. even longer than Benoît Battistelli (despite having appalling approval rates from staff)

  16. European Patent Office Staff Losing Hope

    The EPO’s management with its shallow campaign of obfuscation (pretending to protect children or some other nonsense) is not fooling patent examiners, who have grown tired and whose representatives say “the administration shows no intention of involving the staff representation in the drafting of the consultant’s mandate” (like in Sirius ‘Open Source’ where technical staff is ignored completely for misguided proposals to pass in the dark)

  17. IRC Proceedings: Thursday, January 26, 2023

    IRC logs for Thursday, January 26, 2023

  18. Sirius Relegated/Demoted/Destined Itself to Technical Hell by Refusing to Listen to the Technical Staff (Which Wanted to Stay With Asterisk/Free Software)

    In my final year at Sirius ‘Open Source’ communication systems had already become chaotic; there were too many dysfunctional tools, a lack of instructions, a lack of coordination and the proposed ‘solution’ (this past October) was just more complexity and red tape

  19. Geminispace Approaching Another Growth Milestone (2,300 Active Capsules)

    The expansion of Geminispace is worth noting again because another milestone is approached, flirted with, or will be surpassed this coming weekend

  20. [Meme] Cannot Get a Phone to Work... in 2022

    Sirius ‘Open Source’ wasted hours of workers’ time just testing the phone after it had moved to a defective system of Google (proprietary); instead of a rollback (back to Asterisk) the company doubled down on the faulty system and the phones still didn’t work properly, resulting in missing calls and angst (the company just blamed the workers who all along rejected this new system)

  21. [Meme] Modern Phones

    Sirius ‘Open Source’ is mistaking “modern” for better; insecurity and a lack of tech savvy typically leads to that

  22. The ISO Delusion: Sirius Corporation Demonstrates a Lack of Understanding of Security and Privacy

    Sirius ‘Open Source’, emboldened by ISO ‘paperwork’ (certification), lost sight of what it truly takes to run a business securely, mistaking worthless gadgets for “advancement” while compelling staff to sign a new contract in a hurry (prior contract-signing scandals notwithstanding)

  23. Links 26/01/2023: LibreOffice 7.4.5 and Ubuntu Pro Offers

    Links for the day

  24. Links 26/01/2023: GNU poke 3.0 and PipeWire 0.3.65

    Links for the day

  25. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, January 25, 2023

    IRC logs for Wednesday, January 25, 2023

  26. Companies Would Collapse Upon Abandoning Their Original Goals (That Attracted All the Productive Staff)

    Staff with technical skills won't stick around in companies that reject technical arguments and moreover move to proprietary software in a company that brands itself "Open Source"

  27. [Meme] Listen to Your Workers, Avert Disaster

    Companies that refuse to take input from staff are doomed to fail

  28. The ISO Delusion: When the Employer Doesn’t Understand the Company's Value Proposition (Building Systems) and Rejects Security

    Sirius ‘Open Source’ has failed to sell what it was actually good at; instead it hired unqualified people and outsourced almost everything

  29. Links 25/01/2023: NuTyX 23.01.1 and GNU Guile 3.0.9 Released

    Links for the day

  30. Links 25/01/2023: Stratis 3.5.0 and Many Political Links

    Links for the day

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