[Meme] ISO Selling ‘Reputation’ to Small Businesses (for a Large Fee)

Posted in Deception, ISO, Standard at 9:24 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Receives ISO's blessings, serves clients' passwords and private keys on a silver platter to crackers

Summary: As we’re hoping to demonstrate throughout the week, ISO certification is, in practice, worse than worthless (just a waste of small businesses’ resources, much like patents); call it the ‘ISO tax’, an artificial barrier to entry that boils down to money

[Meme] ISO Certification for Paying for Certificates on Time

Posted in Deception, ISO at 9:19 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Achievement unlocked

CERTIFICATE OF ACHIEVEMENT: Sirius paying us on time

Summary: ISO is a phony authority; it makes business by issuing mostly worthless paperwork that wastes people’s time and accomplishes nothing (except making ISO in rich Switzerland even richer)

The ISO Train Wreck at Sirius ‘Open Source’

Posted in Deception, ISO, Microsoft, Security, Standard at 8:33 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

International Organization for Standardization (ISO) brag

Summary: Before we proceed to showing how Sirius ‘Open Source’ blatantly ignored security and privacy we wish to show how ISO (see ISO wiki) basically ‘sold’ a certificate to Sirius — this is like a "diploma mill" but something that’s for businesses, not individuals

THIS is today’s second article on this topic. We’ve found some spare time for faster progression and in-depth coverage. As I noted yesterday, my wife had more direct and indirect experience (decades ago) with ISO being a bunch of meaningless hooey. So did I (having stumbled upon classical ‘box tickers’ or worse). Sirius is just another reminder of that. Hence this series and its relevance. It seems like a lot of people in technical fields separately and independently reached the conclusion that ISO is overhyped, overvalued, and mostly a waste of time and money (unless you have a ‘bullshit job’ to justify).

“This isn’t science. It’s like calling “economics” a science. It is not. It’s more like religion.”“My dad complained about the ISO in the 90s,” Ryan said in IRC an hour or so ago. “He constantly made fun of all of their “standards” for management of a company that didn’t mean anything but go on and on. It’s a sort of code so that managers sound smarter than they are. “We’re ISO-Whatever compliant with our handling of the TPS reports.” And the ISO standards can be wrong and never revised. Microsoft implemented the standard for MP3 and so did LAME, and then the result was they were both correct and Windows XP crashed. Part of the standard about what constituted the maximum size for a frame could be calculated one of two ways.Microsoft chose the more constrained way and it resulted in a buffer overflow with some files that crashed Windows Media Player. LAME had chosen the method that resulted in a slightly larger permissible frame size. The outcome was LAME had to be changed to use the Microsoft calculation to avoid crashing Windows, and that meant a reduction in audio quality under some circumstances, with padded bytes instead of data. Later, they changed to use the VBR bit allocator, even in a CBR file, and it mostly avoids the situation by its method of action. It can cleverly use the bit reservoir in ways that the former bit allocator that was only for CBR files couldn’t. Naturally, they never delete anything, so you can still demand the old model. It’s just an absolute nightmare of options switches. It’s the worst thing I’ve ever seen in a utility its size. ISO is kind of the stuff of Pointy Haired Bosses when it comes to Management Theory being standardized.”

Well, this whole “Management Theory” is what we’re dealing with here.

This isn’t science. It’s like calling “economics” a science. It is not. It’s more like religion.

Here’s what happened in Sirius (in mostly logical/chronological order):

Subject: ISO
Date: Mon, 29 Jul 2019 15:47:43 +0100
From: xxxx
To: xxxx

Hey All,

As you know we are going through the ISO processes – I have been asked to gather some information from everyone at Sirius to create a list of all assets used by employees of Sirius whether it belong to the company or the employee so if I can have the item name and serial number that would be great. They have also asked which anti virus you all use.

Are you all able to send me the required information ASAP please?



Yes, because a bunch of serial numbers would mean so much! Of people devices at home… for the most part.

“They would nag us to do the same ‘course’ every year, even though it is dumb and we ‘passed’ it already.”A month later came “You have been registered for a Training course – Information Security” (no, not really security but this hoax instead). We’ll deal with that another day…

They would nag us to do the same ‘course’ every year, even though it is dumb and we ‘passed’ it already. This is compliance???

”This is something that will be done annually for our ISO process,” I was told, “so please complete this on your next shift.”

Way to waste people’s time, doing and passing a total hoax over and over again (details on why it’s a hoax were covered here before).

Notice the threats being sent to ALL staff:

Hi All,

As you will all be aware we have been implementing new policies and procedures in order to become ISO 9001 and ISO 27001 compliant. Part of this entailed changing our HR company to xxxx who use the online portal Atlas to provide an easier method to roll out training. I have checked and there is still a substantial amount that has still not been completed.

ALL training sent out by myself needs to be passed and completed by the _*25th November 2019*_. This is to ensure we meet our deadline for the final stage of ISO audits.

Failure to comply with this request may result in disciplinary action. For those of you that have completed the training, please ignore this message and thank you.

Kind Regards,


“Failure to comply with this request may result in disciplinary action,” it says. They kept making veiled and explicit threats. Sometimes this culminated in actual bullying, false accusations, and blame-shifting witch-hunts.

Of course the portals failed to even work properly. For instance:

> ALL training sent out by myself needs to be passed and completed by the
> _*25th November 2019*_. This is to ensure we meet our deadline for the
> final stage of ISO audits.

I was able to open all the documents and read them. The animated things,
or training sessions, get stuck. I tried each one of them about 5 times
(>each<) and they get stuck somewhere along the way. I tried this on
multiple machines. Rianne told she too had some difficulties.

I will try again on my next shift, but these technical issues do merit a
mention. They also rely on plugins Adobe no longer supports, posing
security risk (an issue aside from the bugs).

Kind regards,


Her answer was: “Have you tried using a different web browser?”

Of course she wasn’t using GNU/Linux or anything “Open Source”. This does not constitute an actual solution.

In 2020 the following was sent:

——– Forwarded Message ——–
Subject: xxxx – Things to do
Date: Thu, 26 Nov 2020 11:38:01 +0000
From: xxxx
To: xxxx
CC: xxxx

Hi All,

In October I issued Linux Training via xxxx. Can you all please ‘acknowledge’ this on your portal to show that you have opened and read it.

I also need you to ensure ALL training modules issued on xxxx i.e information security and documents issued i.e IMS Awareness presentation have been completed by the end of your next shift.

It is essential these tasks are carried out prior to our ISO Audit next week.

Kind Regards,

Well, those training modules and ISO guidelines weren’t even followed by Sirius. We gave examples of this before. In some cases, there were efforts to meet standards only after a certificate had been granted.

Sheesh. I’m not supposed to say this in public, am I?

What did those audits mean anyway? What did the above “ISO Audit” actually check? That the cookie drawer is properly locked when Office staff goes to retrieve some hot chocolate milk from the machine?

“In the next few parts we’ll show what Sirius did in practice, not in theory, and what it told staff, not ISO auditors.”Some other messages were banal. They indicated a certificate had been granted (in other words, Sirius basically bought one) after minimal so-called ‘audits’ and staff sending a bunch of numbers from the back of computers (as if that means anything at all).

ISO is a joke. When it comes to this administrivia, ISO created just another ‘cash cow’ for itself.

In the next few parts we’ll show what Sirius did in practice, not in theory, and what it told staff, not ISO auditors. It’s one heck of a clusterf**k with the company’s data scattered all over the place. That includes clients’ data, even private keys and passwords.

Sirius Lying About ISO to Justify Giving the Technical Staff Some Classic ‘Bullshit Jobs’ While Censoring/Covering Up Incompetence

Posted in Deception, ISO, Patents at 7:07 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

ISO perception; ISO reality

Summary: Sirius ‘Open Source’ has long used “ISO” — and sometimes “GDPR” — as catch-all excuses for all sorts of nonsensical policies; does ISO realise the degree to which it is being misused by incompetent 'box tickers'?

“The ISO will basically standardize anything they’re paid to even if it’s impossible for anyone else to implement the standard, for any reason,” Ryan said in IRC yesterday. “They’re a corrupt group that will do anything for money.”

“Here’s one example from Sirius: Nothing to do with ISO, yet “ISO” gets mentioned all the time — the go-to excuse for everything.”To make matters worse, ISO facilitated epic Microsoft corruption. ISO still enables crime. It didn’t seem to mind it or worry about it. It only worried about the impact on its image/reputation. The EPO‘s management also habitually uses “ISO” to distract from the EPO’s crimes. We covered several examples several years ago. “The ISO hoards “standards” and won’t let you read them for free,” Ryan said moments ago. “So on top of patents, things only Microsoft can implement, etc. There’s this. Unless you tore apart LAME’s source code and tried to write new documentation for MP3, you can’t share high level documents with anyone. I doubt that the paywall is a huge cash cow for them. You still can’t share the official MP3 specification. The source code to LAME or Helix are the specification you can see without ponying up almost $300 iirc for a specification that describes it at a high level. By looking at source code, you can’t clearly understand every part of it unambiguously unless you’re a Mentat or something. The developers of LAME buy the PDFs but how much revenue is five people buying PDFs? Or maybe a dozen people even?”

Here’s one example from Sirius: Nothing to do with ISO, yet “ISO” gets mentioned all the time — the go-to excuse for everything. Any terrible policy…. such as classic “bullshit jobs” (making lists of tickets aside from the ticketing system, for no actual purpose other than to keep us extra busy).

Skip to the bold bits for the ‘short’ story or the gist:

Ticket Review – This is priority and compulsory

——– Forwarded Message ——–
Subject: Re: Ticket Review – This is priority and compulsory
Date: Fri, 31 May 2019 12:45:09 +0100
From: xxxxx


Support is contracted to work 8 hours. This time should be used productively for the company’s requirements and business needs. And right now business needs this report from every shift to update the clients. We are also going through quality control for ISO purposes [Ed: emphasis ours]. This makes it even more important.

This is how your shift should really go:

1. Start shift
2. Read Handover
3. Respond to any emails
4. Ticket review
5. As and when new tickets are added to xxxx – enter these onto the relevant ticket review reports on the fileserver for each customer – whilst doing the ticket review, update if status has changed to either open – ongoing OR closed.6. Work on tickets/check monitoring etc for rest of your shift
7. Write detailed handover and send
8. Finish shift

It is not an unreasonable requirement from management.

If you have anymore issues email me directly or xxxx and do not cc anyone else as I don’t want a long email thread which is going to take focus away from objective.

Kind Regards,


> xxxx wrote:
> I’m sorry you don’t want my input, but I think this is a very important point that needs making. The trouble is that I can’t see how this is going to improve the amount of tickets that we have open at the moment. What is needed is for each of us to actually work on the tickets.
> On 31-05-2019 11:35, xxxxx wrote:
>> Hi xxxx,
>> The status box requires open/ ongoing or closed. It doesn’t require details.
>> Please read my email again and follow instructions.
>> This is compulsory and required from each of you.
>> This really is not open for discussion.
> [...]
>> <xxxxxxx> wrote:
>> I understand. But it would be helpful for me if you would would
>> clarify what exactly is required by a Ticket Review. For me,
>> there’s no point writing largely irrelevant or obvious comments
>> at the bottom of each ticket. What is needed is to actually work
>> on each ticket and resolve it so it can be closed.

Well, that stopped getting done when they decommissioned our last server. So that clearly had nothing to do with “ISO”. The management lied to us and misused the “ISO” straw man.

Does ISO deserve to know this?

Another unqualified “manager” did the same with “GDPR”. To provide some context (2020 E-mails):

> Hi Roy,
> Why was this handover sent at 1:03 am – your shift is meant to be
> finished at 1:30 am.
> What is the reason for this?

Again, I think this is a misunderstanding. Check the past 8 years’ worth
of handovers at 1-1:30am. Look at the time pattern.

Did you send a similar message to all my NOC colleagues as well?


She didn’t ‘get’ the message. I did nothing wrong at all. We all did the same thing even close to a decade earlier. She wrote:

Hi Roy,

Why did you leave your shift at 1:14 am (Tuesday 3rd March 2020)?
Your shift is meant to be until 1:30 am.
There was no prearranged time change request with management or request to leave 15 mins early in writing from you in our records.

I am concerned with this issue. Would you kindly clarify?

I responded again:

> Hi Roy,
> Thanks for your email.
> I raised these questions yesterday as I noticed that you said bye on
> your slack convo at 1:14 am (I have sent you a screen shot in previous
> email) that made me investigate further and I came across your handover
> times. Hence all these questions.
> We would request you to complete your full shift as prescribed and not
> leave early in future.

My handover times are not different from my colleagues’.

Can you explain further please?


I responded yet again:

> Hi Roy,
> Why did you leave your shift at 1:14 am (Tuesday 3rd March 2020)?
> Your shift is meant to be until 1:30 am.
> There was no prearranged time change request with management or request
> to leave 15 mins early in writing from you in our records.
> I am concerned with this issue. Would you kindly clarify?

This is a very surprising message.

For the 9+ years I’ve been in the company we all (always) handed over at
1 to 1:30am, often leaving before 1:30. The above is not at all out of
the ordinary. For any of us…


At this point, bearing in mind the previous year’s bullying by her, I kept a copy of the message as a reference (HR, hired by Sirius, advised me to keep copies of key correspondence due to perceived witch-hunts).

To quote the Office Manager on “GDPR” (message redacted a little):

Hi Roy,

When on the 3rd shift (17:30 – 01:30) your shift finishes at 01:30 not beforehand.

xxxx simply requested that you comply with your correct working hours as we could see on slack and your time tracker that you have not been working up until the end of your shift. This isn’t an unreasonable request and doesn’t need to be questioned, its quite simple, finish your shift on time.

I understand the handover being sent over between 01:00 – 01:30 as that allows the colleague next on shift the opportunity to read the handover and discuss anything with you.

On another note, if you can please keep these emails within the company – I can see you have responded/cc’d from your personal email. With GDPR being very important, I do not want any of our client/Sirius data being available on your personal email so its essential to keep work-related correspondence to work emails.

I hope this clears everything up for you.

Kind Regards,


I also said:

>> Hi Roy,
>> Thanks for your email.
>> I raised these questions yesterday as I noticed that you said bye on
>> your slack convo at 1:14 am (I have sent you a screen shot in previous
>> email) that made me investigate further and I came across your handover
>> times. Hence all these questions.
>> We would request you to complete your full shift as prescribed and not
>> leave early in future.
> My handover times are not different from my colleagues’.
> Can you explain further please?

I have received no reply for a day.

I am used to that.

This is not the first time I get unwarranted bollocking and it’s the
kind of thing that can drive away experienced and crucial colleagues
over time.

What I did wasn’t wrong; it doesn’t hurt to get an apology for trying to
shame me in front of the CEO for something I did which was not wrong.

Kind regards,

Of course she never bothered to apologise. She just vanished. Her sidekick had to audacity to say that slang like “bollocking” was rude, ignoring how rude the bullying was and instead focusing on style and choice of words (that British slang isn’t even rude, unlike “bullocks”). It should be noted that the bullying did not start and stop in 2019; it carried on well into 2020. The above example is one of several.

“Sirius has a culture of extreme secrecy, even for insiders.”In summary, what we deal with here is two people bullying staff. They’re not qualified for any management role, but they seem to enjoy the ‘thrill’ of pretending that they are. It would become a more persistent problem as new imposters would attempt to cover up the company’s gross understaffing, e.g. a person without knowledge and ill-equipped or unequipped on the beat, pretending to cover a NOC shift or offer a service (that’s the CEO).

The company was lying to clients.

Remember that this is a company where there’s no chance at progression except through nepotism (like family/kinship and sex). At the moment it’s very hard to know what happens in the company, but that’s hardly different from how it was before, as a cabal was working behind the scenes and behind our backs, scheming to do all sorts of illegal things while lying to us (about who left, who was becoming a client and so on)

Sirius has a culture of extreme secrecy, even for insiders. Someone needs to show the ‘dirty laundry’.

In closing, to quote Ryan again (as other than Microsoft’s OOXML crimes there’s the MPEG cartel ISO controversy): “The ISO is still impeding LAME because someday they’ll lose all of the people who understand the code and then someone will have to fix it up to continue working. I’d argue that you almost can’t have standards with ISO. You have to publish them without ISO into the public domain to truly call them standards. People should get these Public Domain documents and decide whether it’s a standard themselves or not, like ZIP or Opus. You’ll notice they didn’t go to the ISO with Opus. They went to the IETF. The IETF standard, you can read. You can read every draft copy too so you know how it changed along the way if you care to. The ISO won’t give you drafts of a standard even if you pay so there’s no seeing how the process evolved. The ISO is probably even nasty in ways that I can’t fathom. But the ones that I know of are bad enough. FhG was not happy about LAME, I can tell you that much. Not happy at all. Even though it made MP3 hugely popular. They don’t acknowledge it even once on their Web site, even their little “MP3 History” museum, which I don’t even think mentions music piracy either. So that’s kind of like “Wikipedia-izing the History of MP3″. We’ll just gloss over Napster and LAME. Wasn’t important. Not gonna go how the format would have failed completely. We marketed it brilliantly and it was a hit out of the ballpark based on secret documents and patents, and ISO. Secret documents, patents, and ISO are in the way of progress, constantly, and the secret documents and ISO can be cut out of the process a lot easier than reforming the patent system.”

How about “ISO” being leveraged to lie to staff?

Links 23/01/2023: mozilla.org’s 25th Anniversary and IceWM 3.3.1 Released

Posted in News Roundup at 5:38 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Audiocasts/Shows

    • Kernel Space

    • Applications

      • Linux Links8 Meritorious Free and Open Source Modelers

        Linux offers a rich platform for anyone with an artistic inclination. With low cost hardware, quality open source software, and an ounce of talent, artists can produce professional-looking computer graphics.

        There is a relatively small range of open source software that offers the ability of rendering images with Linux. Rendering is the process of taking a 3D model and displaying it as a two-dimensional image. Unfortunately, some of the applications have not seen any development in recent years, abandoned by their developers with no one coming forward to step into their shoes. Nevertheless, there are still some high quality, open source Linux modelers which are worth investigating.

      • OMG! LinuxTangram for Linux is a Browser Built for Web Apps – OMG! Linux

        For an ordered way to use your favourite web apps on Linux check out Tangram, a GTK-based web browser.

        Oh, I know what you’re going to say: “Dude, I already have a web browser” — and for most people a regular web browser (like Firefox, Chrome, etc) is a solid way to use web apps on Linux desktops.

        But what if you want to keep your web apps separate apps from the rest of your browsing?

        Enter Tangram, an open-source GTK4/libadwaita app powered by the the same Webkit engine as GNOME Web (aka Epiphany). As such, pretty much all modern web content works in it.

      • 9to5LinuxHandBrake 1.6.1 Fixes Intel QSV Hardware Detection on Linux, Adds Missing Translations

        HandBrake 1.6 was released about three weeks ago, but it looks like some bugs and crashes managed to squeeze into the final release. For Linux users, HandBrake 1.6.1 is here to address the detection of Intel QSV hardware, though the devs note the fact that this is only a partial fix, for now.

        Also for Linux, the HandBrake release addresses a potential crash that occurred when canceling an Intel QSV encode operation, adds missing format strings to allow you to build the software from sources with the -Werror=format-security option, and adds missing translations (Bulgarian, Corsican, Dutch, German, and Spanish).

      • IceWM 3.3.1 Released

        The latest released version is 3.3.1 (2023-01-23).

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • HowTo ForgeHow to Set Up a Kubernetes Cluster Using Minicube on Debian 11

        Minikube is a free and open-source tool that comes with a set of built-in add-ons that helps you to set up a Kubernetes cluster in your local system.

      • HowTo ForgeHow to Install Drupal with Docker on Ubuntu 22.04

        Drupal is an open-source content management system (CMS) written in PHP.

      • ID RootHow To Install 7-Zip on Debian 11 – idroot

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install 7-Zip on Debian 11. For those of you who didn’t know, 7-Zip is a popular open-source file-archiving software that can be used to compress and decompress files on a variety of platforms, including Windows, Linux, and macOS. It supports a wide range of file formats, including .7z, .zip, .rar, and .tar, and offers both command-line and graphical user interface (GUI) options for interacting with compressed files.

        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 the 7-Zip archiving software on a Debian 11 (Bullseye).

      • TecAdminGetting Started with Linux Screen Command: A Beginner’s Guide – TecAdmin

        Have you ever heard of the Linux Screen Command? It’s an incredibly powerful tool that allows you to take control of multiple programs in a single terminal window. With the Linux Screen Command, you can easily manage multiple programs, even if they’re running in different directories. You can even switch between programs without having to close or restart them. It’s an incredibly efficient way to work in Linux.

      • ID RootHow To Install Magento on Rocky Linux 9 – idroot

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Magento on Rocky Linux 9. For those of you who didn’t know, Magento is a popular open-source e-commerce platform that offers a wide range of features and functionalities. One of the key features of Magento is its flexibility and scalability. It is designed to be highly customizable, allowing developers to create unique and customized online stores. It also supports multiple languages, currencies, and tax rates, making it suitable for businesses operating in different regions.

        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 Magento open-source e-commerce platforms on Rocky Linux. 9.

      • KifarunixHow to Install Docker Resource Usage Extension – kifarunix.com

        How can you install Resource usage extension on Docker desktop? In this guide, you will learn how to install Docker Resource Usage extension.

      • Make Use OfHow to Install and Use HACS in Home Assistant

        Home Assistant Community Store, or HACS, is a powerful integration for Home Assistant that allows users to download and install custom add-ons, integrations, themes, elements, etc. Discover how to install HACS on both the Supervised Home Assistant server running on a Raspberry Pi HASS OS and a non-supervised Home Assistant Server running in a Docker container on a Linux OS.

      • Linux HintHow to Remove Docker Images

        Docker images contain instructions to manage and run Docker containers. Users can create as many docker images as they want. But these Docker images can take up most of the storage in the Docker engine. Therefore, developers are occasionally required to remove the unused Docker image to keep the Docker engine clean.

      • Network WorldWorking with image files on the Linux command line | Network World

        There’s a lot to learn about image files on the command line, from verifying file format to finding out where and when photos were taken and maybe even getting an unusual view of what they look like.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • KDE OfficialSeason of KDE 2023: Mentees and Projects | KDE.news

          This year Season of KDE has several projects focusing on the accessibility and sustainability goals. There are three projects focused on accessibility, three on sustainability and three additional projects in other areas.

          The sustainability projects had fifteen excellent applicants for just three projects, so selecting mentees was challenging. The time mentee applicants invested in applying is much appreciated, and any applicants who have not been selected are encouraged to continue contributing to KDE and open source. It is possible to make smaller contributions to KDE projects that allow possible mentors to see your work and then mentor you informally.

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • GNOMECrosswords 0.3.7: Adaptive Layout, Animations, and Arrows – Jonathan Blandford

          It’s GNOME Crosswords release time again! This is a big release with a lot of changes. Most importantly, I was able to find some time over the holidays to do some long-overdue refactoring of the core game code.


          Adaptive Layout and Animations

          In the previous release, I tried to make Crosswords adapt to different screen sizes. It wasn’t all that usable, so I worked more on it this cycle.

          First, the good news: I cleaned up a lot of the layout bugs, and (thanks to Carlos) got some form of touch screen keyboard input working. The end result is that I changed the appinfo file to indicate we supported all screen sizes and inputs, which means it should be available on all platforms.

  • Distributions and Operating Systems

    • New Releases

      • It’s FOSSNetrunner 23 “Vaporwave” Release Combines the Stability of Debian 11 and Linux Kernel 5.10 LTS

        Netrunner is a Debian-based Linux distro for PCs/ARM-based computers that has been around since 2010 and has been getting a steady flow of updates.

        In a recent announcement, they released Netrunner 23 “Vaporwave” with a few improvements.

      • Linux MagazineNetrunner OS 23 is Now Available

        The latest version of this Linux distribution is now based on Debian Bullseye and is ready for installation and finally hits the KDE 5.20 branch of the desktop.

        Netrunner “Vaporware” version 23 has been made available by Blue Systems, arriving some two years after the previous milestone release. Unlike Netrunner 21, version 23 migrates to Debian Bullseye, which means it also includes the 5.10.19 Linux kernel.

        As well, Netrunner 23 includes KDE Plasma 5.20, Qt 5.15.2, Firefox 102 ESR, LibreOffice 7.0.4, VLC 3.0.18, Audacious 4.0.5, Thunderbird 102.6.0, GIMP 2.10, and much more. But don’t think you’ll be getting a stock KDE desktop.

        The developers have added a number of customizations to the desktop, such as an overview-like main menu, a unique theme that helps to make it stand out, simplified System Settings with Plasma Tweaks, a unified look for both KDE and non-KDE applications, GTK apps with standard Kwin borders, Task Manager with expanding icons, Show Desktop hot-spot in the lower right corner, and more.

      • ZDNetNetrunner 23 ‘Vaporware’ is a Linux distribution ready for productivity and gaming | ZDNET

        I cannot even count the number of Debian-based Linux distributions there are on the market. But when you whittle that list down to those that are both productive and game-ready, the options are much fewer. One of those options is Netrunner.

        According to the official website, “Netrunner is a complete Linux Operating System for PCs, laptops/netbooks and ARM microcomputers, that makes exclusive use of the KDE Plasma desktop environment.” I find that description quite lacking because the distribution isn’t just a complete Linux operating system, but a platform for fun and work.

        With plenty of applications pre-loaded, you can immediately start playing and working without having to install much in the way of third-party software.

        The only tools you might have to add would be the likes of Spotify and Slack. The caveat to that is you would need to first install either Snap or Flatpak.

      • Happy New Year! OSMC’s January update is here – OSMC

        We hope that you had a good Christmas and New Year.

        Our first update of the year brings Kodi v19.5, which is the final version of Kodi 19.x (Matrix). We are now working on preparing Kodi v20 (Nexus) for OSMC users. This update brings the last stable version of Kodi v19 with a few improvements to improve the upgrade process.

      • 9to5LinuxFreespire 9.0 Released with Xfce 4.18, Based on Xubuntu 22.04 LTS

        Based on Canonical’s Xubuntu 22.04.1 LTS (Jammy Jellyfish) operating system, the Freespire 9.0 release is here to offer users a rock-solid Ubuntu experience with the addition of the latest and greatest Xfce 4.18 desktop environment.

        Under the hood, Freespire 9.0 is powered by Xubuntu 22.04’s long-term supported Linux 5.15 kernel series, and, according to its developers, it does not include any proprietary codecs or software code that is not open source.

    • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

      • UbuntuUbuntu Blog: What is MLOps going to look like in 2023?

        While AI seems to be the topic of the moment, especially in the tech industry, the need to make it happen in a reliable way is becoming more obvious. MLOps, as a practice, finds itself in a place where it needs to keep growing and remain relevant in view of the latest trends. Solutions like ChatGPT or MidJourney dominated internet chatter last year, but the main question is…What do we foresee in the MLOps space this year and where is the community of MLOps practitioners focusing their energy? Let’s first look back at 2022 and then explore expectations for 2023.

    • Open Hardware/Modding

      • AdafruitComposite PAL Video on an RPi Pico

        The RaspberryPi Pico can deliver gorgeous composite video!

      • AdafruitCircuit Playground Express Lo-fi Cap Touch Nintendo Controller Tutorial

        This excellent Physical Computing lesson series from the University of Washington includes a section on learning to use capacitive touch on Circuit Playground Express using MakeCode.

        The Making a Lo-fi Capacitive Touch Nintendo Controller project looks great, and includes instructions on building a large paper, cardboard, and conductive tape/foil NES controller.

    • Mobile Systems/Mobile Applications

  • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

    • Make Use OfYou Don’t Trust Open-Source Software? 6 Reasons Why You Should

      Open-source software is usually free. But is free software better than proprietary? Here are some reasons why you should trust open-source software.

      You might feel hesitant to use free and open-source software, especially since so much of the code comes from volunteers. In most areas of our lives, having a product come from a reputable company is a plus. It’s how you trust that something is well-made.

      Why trust code from some volunteers over the high-quality software from the experts at Microsoft, Apple, and Google?

      As the tech giants have shown us, their software may be reliable, but it often comes with all sorts of tracking and other forms of exploitation. Open-source software is actually much safer to use, and here’s why.

    • Events

      • FSFEReady for FOSDEM 2023?

        FOSDEM 2023 is taking place in Brussels the first weekend of February. The FSFE team will be participating at the main Free Software convention in Europe with a booth and giving some keynotes. Are you going to be there? Come to our booth and do not miss our talks!

        After two years without the chance to meet in person and spend time talking with other Free Software friends — and newcomers — around our booth, we are almost there: FOSDEM is back as an “in situ” event.

        FOSDEM brings together thousands of Free Software enthusiasts for one weekend in Brussels to discuss current topics and developments in the Free Software world. This year we are back at the Université Libre de Bruxelles with our booth and several talks to encourage and raise awareness on wider issues that impact our movement. Networking is equally important. We have prepared social gatherings to get to know each other a bit better during the evenings in some informal venues.

    • Web Browsers/Web Servers

      • Mozilla

        • Jamie Zawinskimozilla.org’s 25th anniversary

          Big Tech layoffs are in the news, you say?

          On January 20th, 1998, Netscape laid off a lot of people. One of them would have been me, as my “department”, such as it was, had been eliminated, but I ended up mometarily moving from “clienteng” over to the “website” division. For about 48 hours I thought that I might end up writing a webmail product or something.

          That, uh, didn’t happen.

          At 8am on January 22, 1998, Netscape put out a press release announcing that the source code to the web browser would be released to the public at the end of March. This was the first that I had heard that this was even being considered.

        • LWNZawinski: mozilla.org’s 25th anniversary [LWN.net]

          Jamie Zawinski reminds us that the 25th anniversary of the Netscape open-source announcement — a crucial moment in free-software history — has just passed.

        • Bleach 6.0.0 release and deprecation | Will’s Blog

          Bleach is a Python library for sanitizing and linkifying text from untrusted sources for safe usage in HTML.

        • MozillaStart this year fresh with Mozilla’s tech challenge

          If you’ve already ditched your new year’s goals, we’re here to help. How about a refreshening of your online life with new habits and routines?

          Are there newsletters you don’t read anymore? Mobile apps you no longer use? Or social media platforms you’ve left (ahem, Twitter)? We want to help.

          We’ve put together a month-long challenge to refresh your online life. Each week, we’ll update this blog post with three easy tasks, all of which will take less than 10 minutes to complete. We want to help you build healthy online habits, so you can spend 2023 with fewer worries and more time to enjoy the best of what the internet has to offer.

    • Productivity Software/LibreOffice/Calligra

      • Community Member Monday: Afshin Falatooni – The Document Foundation Blog

        Today we’re talking to Afshin Falatooni, from the Persian-speaking LibreOffice community!


        I write regularly on the Persian LibreOffice blog. My goal is to provide educational contents around LibreOffice there. Additionally, if I find a bug that is either directly or indirectly related to Persian language, in addition to reporting it to Bugzilla with the necessary screenshots and documents, I post it to the blog to make others aware of the important bugs.

        We also have a Persian-speaking group in Telegram, where I answer questions as far as I can, alongside the other admin of the group.

        Many years ago, I added a large collection of Persian words to OpenOffice.org project, which were likely to be written incorrectly. Using that word list, the Persian language was added as part of the OpenOffice.org auto-correction feature. The word bank continues to exist in LibreOffice, and is useful for the Persian speaking users.

    • GNU Projects

      • GNUtexinfo – GNU documentation system – News: Texinfo 7.0.2 released [Savannah]

        We have released version 7.0.2 of Texinfo, the GNU documentation format. This is a minor bug-fix release.
        It’s available via a mirror (xz is much smaller than gz, but gz is available too just in case):



      • GNUMeet Guix at FOSDEM

        GNU Guix will be present at FOSDEM next week, February 4th and 5th. This is the first time since the pandemic that FOSDEM takes place again “in the flesh” in Brussels, which is exciting to those of us lucky enough to get there! Everything will be live-streamed and recorded thanks to the amazing FOSDEM crew, so everyone can enjoy wherever they are; some of the talks this year will be “remote” too: pre-recorded videos followed by live Q&A sessions with the speaker.

    • Programming/Development

      • Razor Agile – a GIT Integrated Software Development Solution for Windows or Linux

        Razor uses GIT to store revisions of issues, files, and baseline history. MariaDB is used to store (settings, configuration, user information, encryption profile, license, etc.). Open-Source and Spawned from MySQL. Runs in a VMware Virtual Machine.

      • QtProduct Analytics With Qt Insight – Make Business Decisions Based on Real Usage Data [Ed: Qt went proprietary; now it promotes telemetry (surveillance)]

        How are critical product-related decisions made at your company? Whilst other areas of business may rely on years of experience, generic data gathered on the way, or even competitor analysis, digging deeper into how your products or digital solutions perform is required in order to optimize the product development lifecycle. Without an understanding of user flows, customer pain points, or the elements going unused, the product development lifecycle can’t be fully optimised, leading to wasted time and resources. Sure, you can always conduct endless feedback loops and research surveys, or even interview your customers to understand how they feel about your products, but the results may not be providing you with an unbiased view – not to mention the time it takes to commit to overseeing qualitative research.

      • Perl / Raku

        • Rakulang2023.04 Thank you, JJ – Rakudo Weekly News

          JJ Merelo has been very active for the Perl and Raku communities for many years. Organizer of the YAPC::Europe in Granada, giving many Raku presentations, working on the Raku documentation, and a regular helper at FOSDEM. The past years, also as a Raku Steering Council member and the Raku Community Affairs Team. Earlier last year, JJ indicated that the Raku activities became too much, with all the other tasks JJ was performing.

      • Python

        • AdafruitThe Python on Hardware Newsletter: join for free
        • Adafruit400 CircuitPython Libraries!

          The CircuitPython community reached a big milestone together! There are 400 CircuitPython Libraries!

          The CircuitPython Library Bundle and Community Library Bundle contain all the current libraries available for CircuitPython. CircuitPython libraries are separate files designed to work with CircuitPython code. CircuitPython programs require a lot of information to run.

  • Leftovers

    • Andrea Corbellini: What time is it? A simple question with a complex answer. How computers synchronize time

      ver wondered how your computer or your phone displays the current date and time accurately? What keeps all the devices in the world (and in space) in agreement on what time it is? What makes applications that require precise timing possible?

      In this article, I will explain some of the challenges with time synchronization and explore two of the most popular protocols that devices use to keep their time in sync: the Network Time Protocol (NTP) and the Precision Time Protocol (PTP).

    • Hardware

      • CNX SoftwareFanless Alder Lake network appliance comes with six 2.5GbE interfaces – CNX Software [Ed: “Windows 11 Pro apparently preinstalled on the system”, so why does CNX cover this?]

        The design looks very similar to another white brand fanless network appliance with six 2.5GbE ports and an Intel Gemini Lake processor that we covered last year. Besides the faster processor, the new system replaces i225-V controllers with i226-V controllers, some of the USB ports have been upgraded to “USB 3.2”, and DisplayPort output was added for dual display setups.

      • CNX SoftwareStoraxa is a 3-in-1 5-bay NAS, WiFi 6 router, and 4K media center (Crowdfunding) – CNX Software

        It’s unclear to me what are the advantages of having SSD drives in the Storaxa, as one of the advantages of SSD-based NAS like the QNAP TBS-464 and upcoming TBS-574X is their thin design, but it’s obviously not the case here. QNAP says the TBS-574X will also be suitable for real-time 4K video production and business IT applications, so maybe the SSDs may help here too although the Intel Celeron N6005 used in the Storaxa will not be quite as powerful as the Intel Core i3-1220P 10-core Alder Lake-P processor found in the QNAP NAS.

    • Pseudo-Open Source

    • Security

      • Wladimir PalantBitwarden design flaw: Server side iterations | Almost Secure

        In the aftermath of the LastPass breach it became increasingly clear that LastPass didn’t protect their users as well as they should have. When people started looking for alternatives, two favorites emerged: 1Password and Bitwarden. But do these do a better job at protecting sensitive data?

        For 1Password, this question could be answered fairly easily. The secret key functionality decreases usability, requiring the secret key to be moved to each new device used with the account. But the fact that this random value is required to decrypt the data means that the encrypted data on 1Password servers is almost useless to potential attackers. It cannot be decrypted even for weak master passwords.

        As to Bitwarden, the media mostly repeated their claim that the data is protected with 200,001 PBKDF2 iterations: 100,001 iterations on the client side and another 100,000 on the server. This being twice the default protection offered by LastPass, it doesn’t sound too bad. Except: as it turns out, the server-side iterations are designed in such a way that they don’t offer any security benefit. What remains are 100,000 iterations performed on the client side, essentially the same protection level as for LastPass.

      • Bruce SchneierNo-Fly List Exposed – Schneier on Security

        I can’t remember the last time I thought about the US no-fly list: the list of people so dangerous they should never be allowed to fly on an airplane, yet so innocent that we can’t arrest them. Back when I thought about it a lot, I realized that the TSA’s practice of giving it to every airline meant that it was not well protected, and it certainly ended up in the hands of every major government that wanted it.

        The list is back in the news today, having been left exposed on an insecure airline computer. (The airline is CommuteAir, a company so obscure that I’ve never heard of it before.)

        This is, of course, the problem with having to give a copy of your secret list to lots of people.

      • LWNSecurity updates for Monday [LWN.net]
      • USCERTCISA Adds One Known Exploited Vulnerability to Catalog | CISA [Ed: "Multiple Zoho ManageEngine products contain an unauthenticated remote code execution vulnerability due to the usage of an outdated third-party dependency, Apache Santuario."]

        CISA has added one new vulnerability to its Known Exploited Vulnerabilities Catalog, based on evidence of active exploitation. This type of vulnerability is a frequent attack vector for malicious cyber actors and poses a significant risk to the federal enterprise. Note: To view the newly added vulnerabilities in the catalog, click on the arrow in the “Date Added to Catalog” column, which will sort by descending dates.

      • LinuxSecurityHow to Check if Your Linux System is Infected with a Virus | LinuxS…

        Linux is undoubtedly the best open-source operating system, and is arguably the most secure OS by design. Most computers these days are Linux-based. Android OS, which is the most commonly used mobile operating system, is also Linux-based. The same goes for Chromebooks and a variety of tablets.

      • Bleeping ComputerHackers now use Microsoft OneNote attachments to spread malware
      • Fear, Uncertainty,

      • Privacy/Surveillance

        • AdafruitHome security drone [Ed: Surveillance gadgets for Bezos and the cops. And YOU PAY FOR IT.]

          A couple weeks back at CES 2023 Ring showed off a prototype drone that would surveil your home. While the idea is super neat it doesn’t sound the most practical for security, maybe if you tie a sheet to it you could scare the burglars away

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • Michael West MediaMurdoch’s wailing old white man scribes get Jacinda Ardern dead wrong, again – Michael West

        As the world is thanking Jacinda Ardern profoundly for her 14 years in New Zealand’s Parliament and more than five as prime minister, a large number of white male scribes have joined in a frenzy of extraordinarily bitter attacks. Alan Austin reports on her economic performance.

        Jacinda Ardern announced on Thursday her intention to retire from the prime ministership in February and from the parliament at the October election. Condemnations from the conservative media are remarkably fact-free.

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • Notice in Lumen reveals Indian Government’s attempt to remove references to BBC’s documentary titled ‘India: The Modi Question’

        A notice contributed to Lumen by Twitter as a part of Twitter’s transparency efforts revealed that on January 21, 2023, India’s Ministry of Information and Broadcasting sent Twitter an online content blocking order requiring the removal of fifty tweets that discuss ‘India: The Modi Question’, BBC’s recent documentary critical of PM Modi’s role in the 2002 Gujarat communal riots, where more than 1000 people were killed. Twitter has withheld the tweets in India in response to this request. The order includes tweets made by multiple members of the Indian Parliament, journalists and news channels.

        The legal justification for the blocking order is Rule 16 of the recently enacted Information Technology Rule, 2021. Under Rule 16, in situations where “no delay is acceptable”, an Authorised Officer can examine content and submit a written recommendation to the Secretary of the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, who enjoys the unilateral power of providing mandates to online platforms to remove content. The Mumbai and Madras High Courts in India have in the past noted that parts of the IT Rules ‘threaten independence of media’ and violate freedom of speech.

  • Gemini* and Gopher

    • Politics

      • The Limit of Compound Interest

        A common point of focus for analysis and finance students is the question of continual compound interest: how will a principal amount grow if an arbitrarily-small amount of compound interest in applied arbitrarily frequently? At the core of this question is the limit…

    • Technical

      • Hey, hey, 2FA

        In which I talk about the problems with suddenly not being able to do 2FA in the modern world.

        I woke up this morning and as usual, checked the time on my phone by the bedside. Blank – ah – didn’t take a charge overnight, perhaps. Unfortunately not so, the phone is dead. Either it won’t take a charge through a cable and the wireless charger, or the on/off button is broken, or the battery is kaput, or … let’s face it, it’s dead.

      • Home Automation and Zigbee

        So I’ve been dabbling a little in home automation this week.

        Ever had to signal your SO by flashing on and off the sofa light because you’re stuck outside in the cold since you forgot your keys, and she’s not answering the phone?

        Until yesterday, this was not something I’d have had to do, but I’ve crossed this threshold now in the relationship and I expect full retribution sometime later when I’m seemingly home alone.

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

Report: The So-called ‘Linux’ Foundation is Reducing Focus on Linux

Posted in Deception, GNU/Linux, Kernel at 5:29 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Linux Foundation decreased Linux spending to 3.2% in 2022.

Summary: The so-called ‘Linux’ Foundation is reducing its focus on Linux and is instead busy promoting Microsoft, Facebook, and other interests that GNU/Linux users strongly dislike

AS per today’s puff piece, as Facebook is failing it’s openwashing time at the so-called ‘Linux’ Foundation; recently, this corrupt organisation (whose leaders seem to be dying young and very frequently) set up a front for Microsoft and for Microsoft ally Facebook, in order to help them compete with Google.

Zemlin has auctioned Linux. He put the brand on sale. He sold several seats to Microsoft and several seats to Facebook. The Board (and the bosses of Linus Torvalds) now works for interests that aren't Linux. Some are openly anti-Linux.

Lunduke, a former Microsoft employee, isn’t happy about this. The other day he noted that “Linux Foundation decreased Linux spending to 3.2% in 2022.”

“Need it be mentioned that this foundation is connected to securities fraud?”To quote: “I’m not going to sugar coat this… it is absolutely ridiculous. The highlight? Funding for the Linux kernel, in 2022, dropped to a measly 3.2% of the foundation’s total revenue of $243 Million dollars. Down from the — already absurdly low — 3.4% from 2021. Considering the name of the foundation… that is, needless to say, highly amusing. Or infuriating. Possibly concerning. Likely all three. Let’s dive into the details and try to figure out why this is happening.”

In another post on this subject he said “Linux Foundation, bored with Linux, launches Open Metaverse Foundation” (some people came to IRC to tell us about this absurdity, which we had seen already).

To quote: “In 2021, The Linux Foundation decided to branch out from their core business (“Linux”) to create an entire foundation focused on “Health” and, specifically, creating vaccine passports. Was it weird that The Linux Foundation was now in the vaccine business? Yes. Yes, it was. Well, it appears that someone has dared Jim Zemlin — the head of The Linux Foundation — to keep making new projects and sub-foundations that make absolutely no sense. Perhaps, even, double-dog dared him. Because yesterday — January 18th, 2023 — The Linux Foundation unveiled their latest attempt to do absolutely anything other than Linux. For that matter, will “The Linux Foundation” keep their name? How long before they re-brand… removing the word “Linux” entirely?”

What’s noteworthy here is that more people speak about the corruption of the ‘Linux’ Foundation and along with it… the Linux brand. Need it be mentioned that this foundation is connected to securities fraud?

Links 23/01/2023: Fwupd 1.8.10

Posted in News Roundup at 8:02 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • 9to5Linux9to5Linux Weekly Roundup: January 22nd, 2023

      This week was kinda slow in news and releases, most probably because of the long holidays and festivities this month. Despite that, we still got new Firefox and VirtualBox releases, a new major release of the GCompris educational suite, as well as a new production-ready NVIDIA graphics driver.

      On top of that, a new release of Netrunner OS arrived after two years with a new Debian base, and the upcoming KDE Plasma 5.27 desktop environment and Firefox 110 web browser have entered public beta testing. Below, you can enjoy these and much more in 9to5Linux’s Linux weekly roundup for January 22nd, 2023.

    • Applications

      • 9to5LinuxFwupd 1.8.10 Adds Support for StarBook Mk VI Laptop, System76’s Launch Heavy Keyboard

        Fwupd 1.8.10 adds support for Star Labs’ StarBook Mk VI Linux laptop, System76’s Launch Heavy configurable keyboard, and the Quectel RM520 5G IoT module. This means that you’ll be able to update the firmware of these devices using the latest fwupd release.

        Some new features also landed in this update, such as a PE/COFF firmware parser that promises to allow reading of coSWID SBoM data, the ability to dump CFI SPI chips using devices like CH341a, as well as support for FDT data in the HWIDs functionality.

      • Linux LinksEssential System Utilities: WTF – terminal dashboard

        Essential System Utilities is a series of articles highlighting essential system tools. These are small utilities, useful for system administrators as well as regular users of Linux based systems.

        The series examines both graphical and text based open source utilities. For details of all tools in this series, please check the table at the bottom.

        WTF (also known as ‘wtfutil’) is billed as “the personal information dashboard for your terminal”. The idea is that you’ve got easy access to important but infrequently-needed stats and data. WTF is published under an open source license. This tool is written in Go.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • University of TorontoHow Let’s Encrypt accounts are linked to your certificates in Certbot

        In theory, starting from Certbot 1.23 you can find out information about your accounts with ‘certbot show_account’. In practice, Ubuntu 22.04 LTS still has Certbot 1.21, and show_account doesn’t show you one critical piece of information, namely Certbot’s local identifier for the account. So instead you have to look under /etc/letsencrypt, where in accounts/acme-v02.api.letsencrypt.org/directory/ you will find one subdirectory per production LE account you have. Each account (ie subdirectory) has a name that’s 32 hex digits, which is Certbot’s (internal) name for this account. In each account’s subdirectory, the meta.json will give you some basic information about the account, currently the creation date and hostname, although not necessarily the email address associated with it (which ‘certbot show_account’ can retrieve from Let’s Encrypt).

      • RlangDeploy your own Shiny app server with debian

        That work inspired me to set up my own home server and to write this guide. Although the sources I found are really helpful, they are lacking a few steps if you set up your own server from scratch, and they are also lacking some sources of where to find when the software gets up to date, providing only old links. Therefore, I decided to make this guide, covering all those topics and keeping a registry of the links, to help myself in the future and to help anybody who want to try it.

      • Evan HahnHow I fixed broken Wi-Fi on my 2012 Mac Mini running Zorin OS

        I recently installed Zorin OS Lite on a 2012 Mac Mini. When I booted it up for the first time, the Wi-Fi didn’t work because I didn’t have the drivers. This is how I fixed it.

        These steps worked for me, and I hope they’re helpful for you. I suspect these instructions work on many old Macs with other Linux distros like Ubuntu. (In fact, these instructions were inspired by a similar guide, which was itself inspired by an old Ubuntu guide.)

      • Red Hat OfficialFree up space on your Linux system with this open source tool | Enable Sysadmin

        Try the Top Disk Consumer Report Generator to help find files, directories, and deleted files that are consuming unnecessary storage on your system.

      • Linux CapableHow to Install 7-Zip on Debian 11 or 10 – LinuxCapable

        7-Zip is a popular open-source file archiving and compression software that allows users to compress and extract files in various formats. It is a versatile tool that can be used on desktop and server environments and is particularly useful for users of Debian Linux. This software can save disk space, reduce file transfer times, and increase security by encrypting and password-protecting files.

      • Master the lsblk Command: Block Devices Information

        The lsblk (pronounced “L-S-block”) command is commonly used to get the list of all the block devices in your system with their information, such as size, type, mount point, etc.

        If you are wondering, what are block devices? Then it’s basically files that represent the device connected to your system (except for ram disk).

        In this article, you will learn how to list out and get information about all the block devices using the lsblk command and its options (with practical examples).

      • TecMintHow to Use ‘head’ Command to Manage Files Effectively

        In Linux, there are various commands available to display the contents of the text file. Some of the popular and most frequently used commands are cat, less, more, view, etc. However, all of these commands are more relevant when we want to display a large part of the file.

      • Trend OceansSL Command: Board with me on the Short Train Journey – TREND OCEANS

        sl command does not have any practical use, but it can be used for fun or entertainment and to start the train simulation you can use the following command to make the train smoke

      • Ruben SchadeRubenerd: FreeBSD pipes and redirection, via @klarainc

        Pipes and redirection were one of those lightbulb moments I had with *nix, albeit on Red Hat Linux at the time. Years later I accidentally realised I could even use them on DOS, albeit in a more limited capacity.

        We take a lot of tooling for granted on these systems, because their use has become second nature. It’s a testament to those forward-thinking engineers.

      • Learn Linux dd Command with 17 Examples

        The dd command is a command-line utility that is abbreviated as “Data Definition“, “Data Duplicator“, or “Disk Dump” depending upon the usage, but it’s commonly known as a utility for copying and converting data in Linux.

        It can copy data from a file or block device (like a hard drive or USB flash drive) to another and perform various operations like creating backups, cloning hard drives, making bootable USB flash drives, data compression, and many more.

        Knowing all this might make you more attracted to this command, but before that, you should know that this command is able to overwrite or destroy data from the disk if used improperly. It is recommended that the user thoroughly understand the options and arguments of the command before using it.

        In this article, you’ll learn how to use the dd command and its options, as well as some common ways to use it as you learn more about Linux.

      • Real Linux UserHow to set up and use Joplin as a Zettelkasten application – Real Linux User

        When I made the decision quite a few years ago to switch from macOS to Linux as my main operating system for all my personal and productive activities, an important step in this choice was to look for great replacement applications for those applications that I no longer could use from my macOS environment. I needed a good replacement for my note-taking activities, among other things. After a lot of searching, I came across what I consider to be a fantastic free and open-source application, named Joplin. Joplin is basically a hierarchically oriented note-taking application, which fits in well with my way of capturing and organizing notes. But more and more I see people switching from a hierarchical system to a Zettelkasten Personal Knowledge Management system in which notes are interconnected. The question is to what extent Joplin can support the Zettelkasten method. In this article, I want to explain how to set up and use Joplin as a Zettelkasten application.

  • Distributions and Operating Systems

  • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

    • OpenSource.com3 predictions for open source in confidential computing

      Open source is key in confidential computing. The Enarx project provides a runtime environment, based on WebAssembly. This allows deploying a workload into a TEE in an architecture- and language-indifferent way. With the general awareness trends I’ve described above, I expect more engineers to join the open source ecosystem of confidential computing projects. This year, more developers might contribute to all elements of the stack, including the kernel, WebAssembly, Rust crates and tools, and Enarx itself.

      Maybe one of those developers is you. If so, I look forward to collaborating with you.

    • Jaakko KeränenA Smörgåsbord of Problems

      For the past several days, while combating another flu, I’ve been polishing Lagrange’s dev branch for the v1.15 release. Preparing for a release typically involves solving a series of small(ish) problems. Here’s a sampling of what I encountered this time.

      Operating systems have fundamental differences when it comes to windowing and event processing. I do most of my development on macOS, so a bunch of small issues typically pop up when testing on Windows, Linux, and *BSD.

    • Ruben SchadeThe writer of ahiru.pl also uses desktop email

      This was the impetus I had for merging my personal email hosted in Alpine back into Thunderbird too. Having everything in one place makes life much easier, even if I still invoke some specific keybindings sometimes.

    • Web Browsers/Web Servers

      • University of TorontoHow Prometheus makes good use of the HTTP Accept: header

        Prometheus metrics exporters are queried (‘scraped’) by Prometheus and respond with metrics in some format. Historically there has been more than one format, as sort of covered in Exposition Formats; currently there’s two text ones (Prometheus native and OpenMetrics) and one binary one (with some variations). The text based formats are easy to generate and serve by pretty much anything, while the binary format is necessary for some new things (and may have been seen as more efficient in the past). A normal metrics exporter (a ‘client’ in a lot of Prometheus jargon) that supports more than one format will choose which format to reply with based on the query’s HTTP Accept header, defaulting to the text based format.

      • OpenSource.comCreate your own website with Joomla!, an open source CMS

        Joomla! is among the leading open source content management systems (CMS) for publishing web content. It’s user friendly, accessible, extensible, responsive, and multilingual. What’s more, it’s also search engine optimized. No wonder Joomla! has a 3.5% share of the content management system market.

        In this article, I’ll introduce you to Joomla! and why I think it’s an excellent choice for your website or online application.

    • Funding

    • Licensing / Legal

      • Ali Reza HayatiI’m NOT changing my license!

        I’m a free software person. I care about software freedom and that’s why I advocate for GNU GPL family of licenses. GNU GPL license makes sure that you have freedom to do anything with your copy but you have to keep it free. If I truly advocate for freedom, I think I wouldn’t want my piece of software to become proprietary. And I thought the same argument goes for other forms of published work.

    • Openness/Sharing/Collaboration

      • Open Access/Content

        • Times Higher EducationOpen access accord ‘to weaken publishers’ negotiating position’

          Under a new commitment agreed by members of the N8 Research Partnership, whose institutions include the universities of Leeds, Manchester and Sheffield, researchers will be urged to retain their intellectual property (IP) rights, rather than sign them over to publishers.

          By doing so, scholars would be free to post final versions of research articles on institutional repositories, after obtaining a CC BY licence – a move that some publishers will not permit, or only allow after an embargo period, a route to publication known as green open access.

    • Programming/Development

      • FactorFive Questions

        Many years ago, there was a blog post containing five programming problems every software engineer should be able to solve in less than 1 hour. I had bookmarked it at the time and didn’t notice the controversy it created on Reddit. The original link seems to be down, but there are various solutions posted online, including a solution in Python.

        I finally got around to looking at it and writing up some solutions to the problems listed. Apparently, instead of solving this in 1 hour in Factor, it took me almost 8 years: [...]

      • The GradientDo Large Language Models learn world models or just surface statistics?

        From various philosophical [1] and mathematical [2] perspectives, some researchers argue that it is fundamentally impossible for models trained with guess-the-next-word to learn the “meanings” of language and their performance is merely the result of memorizing “surface statistics”, i.e., a long list of correlations that do not reflect a causal model of the process generating the sequence. Without knowing if this is the case, it becomes difficult to align the model to human values and purge spurious correlations picked up by the model [3,4]. This issue is of practical concern since relying on spurious correlations may lead to problems on out-of-distribution data.

        The goal of our paper [5] (notable-top-5% at ICLR 2023) is to explore this question in a carefully controlled setting. As we will discuss, we find interesting evidence that simple sequence prediction can lead to the formation of a world model. But before we dive into technical details, we start with a parable.

      • SalonAI chatbots learned to write before they could learn to think

        The internet can’t stop talking about an AI program that can write such artful prose that it seems to pass the Turing Test. College students are writing papers with it, internet marketers are using it to write marketing copy, and numerous others are just having earnest and fun conversations with it about the meaning of life. The AI chatbot in question is called GPT-3, and it’s the latest iteration of a long project from the company OpenAI. Short for “Generative Pre-trained Transformer 3,” GPT-3 is what is known to computer scientists as a large language model (LLM).

      • Daniel MiesslerOpenAI’s Purpose is to Build AGI, and What That Means

        Anyway, the point of all this is to say that this isn’t something that might fall out of ChatGPT. It’s not a conspiracy that they’re trying to build AGI. It’s not a rumor. It’s their stated goal.

      • Terence EdenAdding restaurant review metadata to WordPress

        I’ve started adding Restaurant Reviews to this blog – with delicious semantic metadata. Previously I’d been posting all my reviews to HappyCow. It’s a great site for finding veggie-friendly food around the worlds, but I wanted to experiment more with the IndieWeb idea of POSSE. So now I can Post on my Own Site and Syndicate Elsewhere.

      • ButtondownFunny Programming Languages • Buttondown

        One of the weirdest and most wonderful things about people is that they can make a joke out of anything. For any human discipline there’s people making jokes about that discipline. In programming, that starts with memes like “how do I exit vim” (as typified in places like r/programmerhumor), or funny examples of awful code (such as from TheDailyWTF).

      • ButtondownUse the Wrong Tool for the Job • Buttondown

        I’ve recently been real fascinated by the topic of complexity and what keeps us from keeping software simple. The wider net likes to blame “lazy programmers” and “evil managers” for this, as if any software could, with sufficient time, be made as simple as “hello world”. I’ve instead been looking at how various factors create complexity “pressure”. Code that needs to satisfy a physical constraint is more likely to be complex than code that doesn’t, etc.

        One complexity pressure is “impedance”: when the problem you are solving isn’t well suited for the means you have to solve it. For example, if you need to write really fast software, then Python will be too slow. You can get around this by using foreign function interface, as scientific libraries do, or running multiple processes, as webdevs do, but these are solutions you might not need if you were using a faster language in the first place. In a sense impedance is complexity that comes from using “the wrong tool for the job.”

  • Leftovers

    • Connor TumblesonDangling domain abuse.

      On January 15, 2023 I deleted an old Linode as I helped migrate an old website I hosted to a new provider and webmaster. This went as seamless as possible with zero downtime – I asked all WordPress contributors to hold on writing – did an rsync of all contents and one quick export/import of database and I was done.

      The short TTL I had on the domain led folks to the new host extremely quickly and for those contributors who didn’t respect TTL – I had a draft blog in the old site titled – “This is old – do not write here.”. I kept the old site up for about a week for stragglers then deleted the Linode as mentioned on January 15.

      Five days later on January 20, 2023 I obtained an alert that a new owner was verified in the Google Search Console. I was pretty busy at work on that Friday, so I only started piecing together this mistake on the weekend.

      So this is the story.

    • Counter PunchA Poem is a Secret Shared by People: 5 x 5

      A poem is a secret shared by peopleWho have never met each other* Out there wet January snow’s falling Stovetop homemade chicken broth simmering— Would you like to share a secret? I have been to the top of the mountain Before they lopped it off to pit-mine coal Here on Grant Street we pit-mine soul— The penny-ante pin-wheel the PoetPilfered from a Parkway lawn’s been warped by rain & drivenBy the drunk & dirty snow but’s it’s still spinning. Here’s a secret I shouldn’t oughta tell— Dylan says that then time will tell just who has fell &Who’s been left behind when you go your way & I go mine—So times not really on my side. Hit the brakes hard & gas her into a Rubber-burning four-wheel spin lovin’ theSpin we’re in under that ol’ Black Magic— Does life here have to be fucking tragic? We need some Steely-Dan pretzel-logic.A poem is a secret shared by peopleWho have never met each otherShare secrets w/ me Sisters & Brothers— Might we keep the aspidistra flying? Secrets are truth while all-else is lying.

      * Charle “Dusan” Simic 1938-2023

    • MWLUpdates to Print Bookstore and FAQ

      I’ve made some updates for the pandemic age, updated and clarified a few Q&As, and puttered with the text.

    • Ruben SchadeUsing PCI slots for SSD brackets

      I’m spoiled in server land at work. The build quality of desktop cases has improved significantly over the last few years, but all the innovation is being poured into radiators, chintzy lighting, and vertical mount GPUs. Storage is relegated to awkward positions behind motherboards, in flimsy trays in the power supply shroud area, or eschewed (gesundheit) altogether. All together? English is weird.

      In what I dub a reverse-Tardis, cases are getting bigger, but their internal storage is shrinking. Some of this can be attributed to the introduction of NVMe and eMMC that cleanly mount directly to the motherboard without data or power cables. But their price, and limited board slots, make them ill-suited for bulk storage, scratch space, and redundancy. People often say that about me.

    • Terence Eden[Repeat] Lessons learned from a power-cut

      The first indication I had that anything was wrong at home was my solar panels’s cloud service casually emailing me to say they hadn’t generated any electricity that day. We were on holiday – literally on the other side of the planet – and there were reports of snow at home, so I didn’t think anything of it.

      But the same thing happened the next day. And our alarm system app started complaining that it couldn’t reach our home network. Nor could our security camera app, heating app, and lighting app.


      At first, I thought the Internet had temporarily gone out. Our ISP’s fault page showed no disruption in the area and no problems with the line.


      I checked with the local power company – and there were no cuts reported in the area. So I checked our smart meter data. Our energy company gets reports every 30 minutes from the meter. That let me see that, at some point after 0930 one morning, the power had gone out and hadn’t come back.


      The smart meter was sending back 0kWh every 30 minutes. So I was reasonably sure that the house hadn’t burned down. And, after a moment of panic, felt sure that if there had been a gas explosion, ram-raid, or meteor strike, someone would have found a way to contact me. So it was probably a fuse tripping which had knocked everything out.

      Wait! What about our UPS?!!?


      I have a UPS. It has a USB port. It is connected to my server. My server can communicate with my UPS. Do I make use of any of this? NO!

    • Seth Michael LarsonHi-Chew Pokédex

      I love the idea of having “personal Pokédexes”, a set of known things out there in the world that you want to collect. My current personal Pokédex is Hi-Chew flavors. Below I’ve listed ones I’ve either tried or aspire to try one day. What’s your personal Pokédex?

    • Xe’s BlogSite Update: CSS Fixes – Xe Iaso

      So yesterday my blog was on the front page of Hacker News. Twice. The comments were brutal, however some people politely pointed out some issues that I’ve brushed off in the past because it’s difficult to interpret comments like “ur website is gay furry trash because I can’t tell what is a conversation snippet lol” in a positive enough light to want to act on it.

    • CoryDoctorowEleanor Janega’s “Once and Future Sex”

      The Once and Future Sex is Eleanor Janega’s new history of gender and sex in the medieval age, describing the weird and horny ways of medieval Europeans, which are far gnarlier and more complicated than the story we get from “traditionalists” who want us to believe that their ideas about gender roles reflect a fixed part of human nature, and that modern attitudes are an attempt to rewrite history.


      This extends in all directions: whether women did hard physical labor, whether beauty ideals are eternal, whether women went to war, or ruled, or engaged in scholarship.

    • Ruben SchadeRubenerd: The @cartron on blogging regularity

      I love that we’re the master of our own domain with blogging. If you want to post once every year, or a few smaller posts a day, or take a break for a few months, you absolutely can. You can write without titles, have a complicated or simple site design, include inline images or only post text, whatever you want. There aren’t any rules, beyond writing syntax a browser and RSS aggregator can interpret.

    • Hardware

      • Linux GizmosICP Mini-ITX board runs on Intel Alder Lake-S/Raptor Lake-S processors

        The KINO-ADL-H610 is a Single Board Computer compatible with various Intel 12th/13th Gen Core processors. The SBC is equipped with dual 2.5GbE LAN ports, dual 4K @60Hz displays, SATA 6GB/s and various I/O interfaces 

      • HackadayOff-Grid Van Build Uses 3D Scanning For Smarter Planning

        Folks who refurbish and rebuild vans into off-grid campers (especially with the ability to work in them remotely) put a fantastic amount of planning and work into their projects. [Rob] meticulously documented his finished van conversion and while he does a ton of clever work, we especially liked how he shows modern tools like photogrammetry can improve the process.

      • HackadayMinimalist Homebrew Hardware Recreates Arcade Classics

        Classic video games might look primitive by today’s standards, but the addictive gameplay of Breakout or Pac-Man remains fun no matter what decade you were born in. Keeping the relevant hardware running becomes harder as the years pile up however, so when [Michal] decided to introduce his kids to classic video games, he didn’t dig up his old game consoles. Instead, he decided to recreate several games from scratch using the bare minimum amount of hardware needed.

      • HackadayReading Data From A CD, With A Microscope

        There was a time when electronic engineering students studied the audio CD, for all its real-world examples of error correction and control systems. There’s something to be found in the system still for young and old though, and thus we were intrigued when we saw [Peter Monta] reading the data from a CD using a microscope.

      • Ruben SchadeThoughts on an entirely new Commodore 64

        Taking a step back though, you’d fall off a cliff. We’ve reached the point where serious technical enthusiasts, armed with off the shelf components, FPGAs, programming knowledge, and an understanding of electronics, are able to create socket-compatible components that a 1980s chip foundry Commodore literally had to buy could. Couple that with injection moulds, 3D printing, video creators with large audiences, and a community of interested fans offering feedback, views, and money, and it’s feasible in 2023 to recreate an entire 1980s computer.

      • HackadayRunning Cray OS And UNICOS On Your Own Cray Simulator Instance

        The Cray series of super computers have been pretty much symbolic for high-powered computing since the 1970s, and to this day there’s a certain level of mysticism to them. Much of this is also helped by how rare these systems were and are today. Unlike Commodore, Apple and IBM PC systems which got sold by the truckload, Cray super computers and the much smaller workstation systems were and are significantly more rare. Despite or perhaps because of this [Andras Tantos] embarked on a decade-long quest to bring together what is left of the Cray legacy in the form of the Cray Files.

      • HackadayDesigning A Simpler Prosthetic Finger

        Prosthetic limb design is an area where desktop manufacturing has made huge strides, but there’s always room for improvement. For example, take a look at [Ian Davis] and his attempts to design a simpler prosthetic finger.

    • Health/Nutrition/Agriculture

      • VideoVaccines and viral variants

        The use of antibiotics has promoted antibiotic resistance, which is a major global threat to the treatment of bacterial infections. The bacteria which survive are the ones which are resistance to an antibiotic. These are the bacteria which will survive to infect the next person.

        The situation is much the same with vaccines which act against viral infection.

        Vaccines which do not sterilise the body of a virus will leave some viral particles alive. It is these surviving viruses, which are not killed by vaccine induced antibodies, that survive to reproduce. This is why vaccines can lead to the evolution of new variants of a virus. In other words, the virus must evolve to avoid vaccine induced immunity.


        It is also noted that repeated vaccination can stimulate the T suppressor lymphocytes that actually inhibit the immune response.


        Fortunately, these genetic changes have so far led to covid viruses which cause less severe disease, while still being very transmissible. This has reduced serious illness and deaths, while promoting widespread natural immunity.

    • Proprietary

      • Times Higher EducationUniversity ‘will never pay ransoms’ despite darknet data leak [iophk: Windows TCO]

        Professor Albert said the November 2022 attack “created a complex situation with regard to the damage caused”, including the encryption of 1,200 virtual servers and takeover of a central system for controlling access.

        The scale of the attack means the university has had to reconstruct its IT infrastructure. Raimund Vogl, president of the European University Information Systems Organisation and chief information officer at the University of Münster, said replacement hardware and security consultants could cost around €100,000 (£88,000), but that this would typically be dwarfed by the labour costs of having tens of IT and administrative staff working around the clock on recovery for months.

      • QtRegarding recent reported security vulnerabilities from Cisco Talos

        Back in October 2022, the Qt Project Security team was contacted by someone at Cisco Talos to report an issue with integer and buffer overflow issues in QML which they considered a vulnerability in Qt 6.3. This has recently been made public by Cisco Talos here. This has also resulted in two CVEs , CVE-2022-40983 and CVE-2022-43591.

    • Linux Foundation

      • Bryan LundukeLinux Foundation decreased Linux spending to 3.2% in 2022.

        I’m not going to sugar coat this… it is absolutely ridiculous.

        The highlight? Funding for the Linux kernel, in 2022, dropped to a measly 3.2% of the foundation’s total revenue of $243 Million dollars.

        Down from the — already absurdly low — 3.4% from 2021.

        Considering the name of the foundation… that is, needless to say, highly amusing. Or infuriating. Possibly concerning. Likely all three.

        Let’s dive into the details and try to figure out why this is happening.

      • Bryan LundukeLinux Foundation, bored with Linux, launches Open Metaverse Foundation

        In 2021, The Linux Foundation decided to branch out from their core business (“Linux”) to create an entire foundation focused on “Health” and, specifically, creating vaccine passports.

        Was it weird that The Linux Foundation was now in the vaccine business?

        Yes. Yes, it was.

        Well, it appears that someone has dared Jim Zemlin — the head of The Linux Foundation — to keep making new projects and sub-foundations that make absolutely no sense. Perhaps, even, double-dog dared him.

        Because yesterday — January 18th, 2023 — The Linux Foundation unveiled their latest attempt to do absolutely anything other than Linux.


        For that matter, will “The Linux Foundation” keep their name? How long before they re-brand… removing the word “Linux” entirely?

    • Security

      • Integrity/Availability/Authenticity

        • Ciprian Dorin Craciun[remark] Memorable password schemes and patterns? — Volution Notes

          Questions (without definitive answers) about memorable password schemes and patterns.

        • Ciprian Dorin Craciun[remark] Password strength for offline storage? — Volution Notes

          Questions (without definitive answers) about password strength (i.e. entropy bits) for offline storage.

        • Jan Piet MensJan-Piet Mens :: Notes to self: KeePassXC

          More and more frequently, when I ask friends and family (people with a mainly non-computing background) how they manage their passwords their eyes cloud over, and I then feel the need to tell them that they ought to apply good password hygiene. (I tend to mensplain a bit.) As such I’ve been looking much more deeply into KeePassXC as a multi-platform, Open Source, and very decent password manager.

          I ran away from 1Password many years ago when, IIRC, forced cloud upon their users and also converted to a subscription model and settled for EnPass at the time. Aside from a number of UI quirks in EnPass I’ve been happy enough with it, and I got it at the time when they had a purchase model; I believe that has meanwhile also changed to a subscription model. I want to be able to recommend a program which has a fixed price (Open Source is fine) and a UI which will hopefully remain somewhat consistent. I think KeePassXC matches the requirement.

        • Ruben SchadeRubenerd: The “I lost my phone” scam

          I’m seeing an uptick in spam messages claiming the sender lost their phone, and that they’re messaging from a friend’s device. They impart a sense of urgency by claiming they’re stranded, need money, and that their friend’s phone is also running short of battery. Or long, depending on the form factor. Thank you.

      • Privacy/Surveillance

        • Ruben SchadeRubenerd: Joe Biden’s online privacy op-ed

          Mike Masnick asserts the devil is in the details. For example, he says it’d be infeasible and undesirable to to verify the age of web visitors. While true, it muddies the issue: it’d be easy to legislate against companies buying ads targeting children in the first place. We already do this with tobacco and gambling.

      • Confidentiality

        • Old VCRBringing TLS to the Magic Cap DataRover

          Today we’re adding TLS 1.3 to the one and only web browser on a 36MHz MIPS handheld running Magic Cap, the most unique mobile operating system from the most influential startup you never heard of. But before we do, a thank-you to Scott and Barbara Knaster: [...]

    • Defence/Aggression

    • Transparency/Investigative Reporting

      • Counter PunchBreaking the Addiction to Secrets and Secrecy

        The mainstream media has done their best to scramble the information on classified documents and the issue of secrecy.  Because the media treasures the idea of balance and equivalence, it has unnecessarily equated the criminal culpability of Donald Trump and the sloppiness of Joe Biden’s staff.  The former led to Trump’s intentionally keeping large amounts of classified material at Mar-a-Lago; the latter led to small amounts of intelligence at Biden’s former office and his home.  Since I held high-level security clearances for more than four decades while in the U.S. Army, the Central Intelligence Agency, the Department of State, and the Department of Defense, I have something to offer on the issue of secrets and secrecy.

        First, there is a simple fix to the problem of presidents being responsible for the closing of their White House offices and the boxing of sensitive materials.  This work is done at the final stages of a presidential term by members of the president’s staff, some of whom probably even lack the clearances to handle sensitive materials.  The closing down of these offices and the sorting of materials should be done by qualified members of the General Services Administration or, better yet, the National Archives and Records Administration, which can catalogue sensitive materials as well as package them.  In the case of Trump’s perfidy, the National Archives knew it was missing certain documents but had no idea about the rest of the items Trump was concealing.  This must be corrected.

    • Environment

      • Counter PunchOur Planet Versus Plastic Bags: a Tale of Two Cities

        With oceans, countries, populations, and governments inundated by a plague of plastic worldwide, it may be useful to focus on the single-use plastic bag choices made by two cities, in the same U.S. state, located at a distance of only 64 miles (104 km) from each other. Both Santa Fe and Albuquerque share many qualities and conditions, foremost among them a distinctive cultural mix of American, Hispanic/Latino, and Native American citizens. But the two communities are also dissimilar, and this is reflected in the way they have dealt with the plastic bag dilemma.

        Santa Fe is the oldest capital city in the United States. It is the seat of the New Mexico government and is home to the country’s third-largest art market. It calls itself “the City Different” and has more than 250 art galleries and dealers, a dozen state and private museums, and a world-class opera, for its more than 88,000 residents.

      • Energy/Transportation

        • Counter PunchThe Blowback From Sanctions Against Russia

          Plenty of media focus on Ukrainian military success and Russian failure in the fighting in Ukraine but far too little attention is given to the way in which the Western economic war against Russia has boomeranged against the EU states.

          The bid to ensure that Russia went on exporting plenty of crude oil – 11.2 million barrels a day in December – while at the same time limiting its earnings from higher oil prices was always contradictory and bizarre. President Vladimir Putin was derisive about the economic impact of a Western price cap on the price of Russian crude that is above the Russian sales price.

        • Common DreamsExxonMobil and the Endless Climate Lie

          Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg is getting carried away. Literally. She joined thousands in the village of Lützerath, Germany, to oppose the expansion of an open-pit lignite mine, one of the dirtiest forms of coal. Police in riot gear hauled her away as the mass arrests progressed. Greta wrote on Twitter, “Yesterday I was part of a group that peacefully protested the expansion of a coal mine…We were kettled by police and then detained but were let go later that evening. Climate protection is not a crime.”

        • Ruben SchadeRubenerd: Printers and wasted tech potential

          Last year I mentioned what a waste cryptocurrency and blockchain guff was. I didn’t just mean in terms of electricity and silicon, but also the wasted potential among thousands of engineers who could be directing their craft to solving real problems, helping their fellow human travellers, and making the world a more beautiful place.

        • [Old] Network UPS ToolsNetwork UPS Tools

          The primary goal of the Network UPS Tools (NUT) project is to provide support for Power Devices, such as Uninterruptible Power Supplies, Power Distribution Units, Automatic Transfer Switches, Power Supply Units and Solar Controllers. NUT provides a common protocol and set of tools to monitor and manage such devices, and to consistently name equivalent features and data points, across a vast range of vendor-specific protocols and connection media types.

          NUT provides many control and monitoring features, with a uniform control and management interface. If you are just getting acquainted with NUT, that page also explains the technical design and some possible set-ups.

        • Pro PublicaWhat to Know About the Risks of Gas Stoves and Appliances

          As a climate reporter, I was well aware of the growing concern about the gas stoves in people’s homes leaking dangerous pollutants, like methane, a potent greenhouse gas and explosive hazard; nitrogen dioxide, which worsens asthma; and benzene, which causes cancer. But I was a renter who had no control over my appliances. So I mostly ignored it — until one day last fall when I smelled the rotten-egg odor of leaking natural gas while baking focaccia.

          I borrowed a $30 gas leak detector from a friend (a fellow climate reporter, of course). When I turned on the oven in my New York City apartment, the lights for a “significant” leak lit up. My kitchen was filling up with methane. According to the user manual, that meant I should “VENTILATE THE AREA IMMEDIATELY and move to a safe location” in case of an explosion. I opened the windows and ignored the evacuation advice (don’t follow my example), too intent on taking a video of the leak as proof for my landlord before turning off the oven. Then I vented my frustration by panic-texting friends and eating too much focaccia — after cutting it into pieces and baking it in my toaster oven. Luckily, my landlord replaced my faulty stove within days. I made sure to check the new stove (still gas, alas) for leaks after it was installed.

        • ScheerpostPeru’s Natural Resources: CIA-Linked US Ambassador Meets With Mining and Energy Ministers to Talk ‘Investments’

          Peru has large reserves of copper, gold, zinc, silver, lead, iron, and natural gas. After a coup overthrew left-wing President Pedro Castillo, the US ambassador, CIA veteran Lisa Kenna, met with mining and energy ministers to discuss “investments”. Europe is importing Peruvian LNG to replace Russian energy.

        • MeduzaA Tyumen resident got a subsidy for utility bills — 1 kopeck — Meduza

          Authorities in the city of Ishim, in the Tyumen region, gave a resident a subsidy of 1 kopek (around 1/100 of a cent) to help pay utility bills. The resident, who wishes to remain anonymous, posted the official notice on Telegram.

      • Wildlife/Nature

    • Finance

      • Counter PunchOmitting the Evidence: What the IMF Gets Wrong About Venezuela

        On December 5, 2022, the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) Western Hemisphere Department published a report titled “Regional Spillovers from the Venezuelan Crisis,” which assesses the causes of Venezuela’s economic crisis, the drivers of the country’s record emigration, and the impact that this influx of Venezuelan migrants has had on neighboring countries. While these are worthy topics of research, and there is much of value in the report, authors Alvarez et al. curiously omit a critical piece of the puzzle, and one of the single most important factors contributing to Venezuela’s current economic and humanitarian plight: US economic sanctions.

        In August 2017, the Trump administration issued Executive Order 13808, barring the government of Venezuela, including the state-owned oil company Petróleos de Venezuela, S.A. (PDVSA) and its joint ventures, from accessing US financial markets. Though the United States had imposed sanctions on certain Venezuelan individuals and entities before this, including under the Obama administration’s E.O. 13692, which declared a US national emergency with respect to Venezuela, the August 2017 sanctions marked the beginning of a series of sweeping sanctions that would define the Trump administration’s approach to US-Venezuelan relations. Sanctions were escalated even further alongside the recognition of a parallel government beginning in 2019, most notably with the January 28 designation of PDVSA as a sanctioned entity, and the 2020 imposition of secondary sanctions against shipping companies involved in the transportation of Venezuelan oil. The vast majority of these sanctions remain in place today.

      • Common Dreams2022 Was a Bad Year for Billionaires—But Not Nearly Bad Enough

        Sometimes the daily news about our billionaires just doesn’t seem to make any sense.

      • Counter PunchA Down Year for Our Deepest Pockets?
      • MeduzaRussian banks to release stickers to replace Apple Pay — Meduza

        Russian banks plan to start issuing stickers containing NFC chips to replace foreign contactless payment services such as Apple Pay and Google Pay, which were suspended in Russia soon after Moscow launched its full-scale invasion of Ukraine, RBC reported on Monday.

      • Common DreamsWe Need a New Approach to Debt—One Borrowed From the Past

        On Friday, Jan. 13, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen wrote to Congress that the U.S. government will hit its borrowing limit on Jan. 19, forcing the new Congress into negotiations over the debt limit much sooner than expected. She said she will use accounting maneuvers she called “extraordinary measures” to keep U.S. finances running for a few months, pushing the potential date for default to sometime in the summer. But she urged Congress to get to work on raising the debt ceiling.

      • Common DreamsWe Need Housing for People to Live In, Not for Corporations to Invest In

        Anyone who is active in our communities knows that housing insecurity and homelessness are rising fast, due in part to an ever-shrinking lot of affordable rentals and homes. Housing should be the rallying cry right now.

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • Computer WorldUK gov’t amendments to Online Safety Bill include criminal liability

        The bill was updated on Tuesday after Conservative back benchers threatened to vote against the legislation unless it included a provision that would allow regulators to prosecute social media executives who are found to have compromised the safety of children online. Earlier in the week, the Labour Party also signaled it would be willing to back the inclusion of criminal liability to the bill.

      • ScheerpostIs SCOTUS on the Verge of Dismantling Labor and the Administrative State in One Blow?

        By Nancy Snyder / CounterPunch On Tuesday, January 10,  the United States Supreme Court heard oral arguments in the matter of Glacier Northwest, Inc. v. International Brotherhood of Teamsters Local Union 174. If Glacier Northwest prevails, the Supreme Court ruling will make it far easier for alleged labor disputes that result in damage to company property, to […]

    • Freedom of Information / Freedom of the Press

      • The DissenterKevin Gosztola On ‘The Chris Hedges Report’
      • ShadowproofKevin Gosztola On ‘The Chris Hedges Report’

        Chris Hedges, longtime journalist and host of “The Chris Hedges Report,” had Shadowproof editor Kevin Gosztola on his show to discuss his book, Guilty of Journalism: The Political Case Against Julian Assange.

        The book can be pre-ordered from Seven Stories Press. It will be released on February 21.As Chris said in the introduction, “I think your book and Nils Melzer’s book are books I would recommend for people who don’t understand the case.”Chris and Kevin go issue by issue, like the book, which is not a chronology but a meticulously organized guide to all aspects of the United States government’s charges and allegations.

      • ScheerpostChris Hedges: The Plague of Social Isolation

        The rupture of social bonds and loss of community, caused by the decades-long assault on the poor and working class and the ravages of the pandemic, have resulted in a dangerous social isolation.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • TruthOutGreta Thunberg’s Arrest Demonstrates Why Energy Charter Treaty Must Be Abolished
      • TruthOutPeet’s Coffee Baristas Unionize First Cafe With Help from Starbucks Workers
      • Common DreamsBaristas Form First Unionized Peet’s Coffee in US With Help From Starbucks Workers

        In a win for workplace democracy, employees at a Peet’s Coffee & Tea located in Davis, California formed the chain’s first unionized shop in the United States on Friday.

      • Common DreamsThousands Across US Demand Reproductive Freedom on Roe’s 50th Anniversary

        Thousands of people called for reproductive freedom at rallies around the United States on Sunday—the 50th anniversary of the landmark Roe v. Wade decision that made abortion a constitutional right until the Supreme Court’s reactionary majority overturned it last summer.

      • India TimesThousands of Indian IT professionals now jobless scrambling for options to stay in the US

        According to The Washington Post, nearly 200,000 IT workers have been laid off since November last year, including some record numbers in companies like Google, Microsoft, Facebook and Amazon. As per some industry insiders, between 30 to 40 per cent of them are Indian IT professionals, a significant number of whom are on H-1B and L1 visas.

      • Counter PunchGoogle’s Stock Climbed After It Fired 12,000 Employees, But What Did They Get Out of It?

        Alphabet, the parent company of Google, has announced it will lay off about 6 percent of its global workforce. Google CEO Sundar Pichai sent his employees a letter warning of imminent layoffs and saying how “deeply sorry” he was. He offered for workers to “feel free to work from home” for the day in order to process the tough news that about 12,000 of them would soon lose their jobs.

        This was roughly the same number of new employees that Alphabet lured to join its workforce last quarter. According to Investor’s Business Daily, the company “added 12,765 employees, which was above Wall Street estimates.”

      • Pro PublicaDEA Had Evidence on García Luna Long Before Bribery Trial

        When federal prosecutors walk into the United States Courthouse in Brooklyn on Monday to present their opening statements against Genaro García Luna, the highest-ranking Mexican official ever tried in the United States for drug corruption, they will unveil a complex case that took years to build.

        But the fuller story of the government’s investigation of García Luna — a former security minister who was arguably the United States’ most important Mexican partner in a long and failed effort to transform his country’s criminal justice system — is hardly a triumph of determined American law enforcement.

      • Counter PunchA Second Civil War?

        The far-right love it, liberals dread it. Since the 2021 Capitol Attack a second American civil war has entered mainstream discussion. The far-right embraces it, an apocalypse that will birth a White ethno-state. Scared, liberals demand electoral and judicial reforms, or harken to the good ol’ days of Obama and Clinton, where neoliberal consensus kept politics civil.

        Socialists and Marxists dismiss the possibility of civil war. “They got you fighting a culture war to stop you fighting a class war” is a popular saying. Presumably, the culture wars are superficial, with no economic basis. What is forgotten is that class conflict is not only between classes, but within classes. In America, conflict is emerging between urban and rural capitalists, with the culture wars acting as a proxy to recruit the working-class. While it is in capitalists’ collective interest to fight the working class, it is in each capitalist’s individual interest to fight each other until monopoly is established. Usually this is done through the market. But when expansion in the market reaches its limit, war becomes another means towards capital accumulation.

      • Craig MurrayAnn Gloag and Human Traffic

        Scotland has no shortage of dreadful right wing judges, but as the very epitome of reactionary conservatism, one gobsmacking judgment from Perth Sheriff Michael Fletcher stands out.

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

      • Eesti RahvusringhäälingAgency investigating Estonia’s expensive high-speed internet prices

        In Estonia, 100 Mbit/s internet costs the same as 1 Gbit/s in Latvia and Lithuania, a situation the minister described as “incomprehensible”. To buy a 1 Gbit/s connection in Estonia costs €70, but €19 in Lithuania and €21 in Latvia.

        Estonia ranks 6th in the European Union in terms of the cost of 100 Mbps fixed connection.

      • Ruben SchadeRubenerd: Making mistakes with NICs

        I spent twenty minutes today trying to figure out why I hadn’t been able to SSH into a VM. I verified I had the correct ports open on the firewall, that the OpenSSH service was running, and more embarrassing checks including making sure the VM was indeed running.

        I hadn’t attached an IP address.

    • Monopolies

      • Copyrights

        • Torrent FreakUnder a New EU-Focused Copyright Law, Musical Artists Currently Earn *Nothing*

          With war raging over the border in Ukraine, a pro-Moscow separatist region to its east, and inflation at 35%, former soviet republic Moldova was granted EU candidate status last summer. New copyright law crafted to protect artists under strict EU standards is now mired in allegations of corruption and Russian interference. Meanwhile, local artists are currently being paid absolutely nothing.

        • Torrent Freak10 Most Popular Torrent Sites of 2021

          Continuing a long-standing annual tradition, today we publish our list of the most popular torrent sites at the start of 2023. Measured by traffic, we see that YTS takes the top spot, closely followed by 1337x. Anime torrent site NYAA, meanwhile, has entered the top three.

    • Gemini* and Gopher

      • Personal

        • 🔤SpellBinding: EZILOSF Wordo: PURGE
        • Computers are still bicycles for the mind, even though people use them for pretty much everything else

          Probably everyone in Geminispace has heard Sturgeon’s Law and most can probably recall most of it just from seeing the phrase “Sturgeon’s Law”. While “90% of everything is crap” is the part that everyone knows, what’s lesser known is that he’s claimed, rightfully in my view, that the remaining 10% makes science fiction a genre worth the time and attention that it gets.

          I think the same is true of computers and bicycle-for-the-mind computing. Most of the time, computers aren’t used for augmenting humans and instead are used for communication tasks of varying levels of importance. However, the times when I pull out the actual mind bicycle — oftentimes Excel, but not infrequently Ulysses (many people swear by Obsidian instead) — I’m struck by how these sorts of tasks would break my brain with their difficulty if I were thrown back into the technology level of the early 80s before spreadsheets and ⌘F became common technologies.

        • mobile gaming

          The sun is out and most of the daylight hours is going gone. It
          makes me sad, but what can I do. I woke up at noon and did not make
          it to church. Oh well, I guess I needed the rest more. I do feel
          well rested but a little out of sorts since I am not used to getting
          that much rest.

        • Heat

          I live in the mountains. During the warmer months the power

          company regularly turns off our power to do “maintenance”

          upgrades on the system. They generally do this during the

          day… when it is 90*F (+/-) and generally for anywhere

          between 4 and 16 hours.

          In the years that I have lived up here they never did this

          during the winter… until this year. But now they have

          decided to only do it overnight. So from 8pm until 4am

          we will be without power. Our heating system is natural

          gas based, but requires power to function. It is 23*F out

          right now. It is 7:40p. So we will lose power in just a bit

          here. My wife is tucking my daughter in and we will bring

          her upstairs to sleep with us when we go to sleep (so that

          we know she is under blankets and warm enough).

        • Capsule of the day – 2023-01-23

          If some offensive capsules are listed here automatically, please alert me so I can manually remove them.

      • Technical

        • Programming

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

IRC Proceedings: Sunday, January 22, 2023

Posted in IRC Logs at 2:10 am by Needs Sunlight

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