Bonum Certa Men Certa

Links 23/8/2021: GNU's MyGNUHealth and GNU Parallel Have New Releases

  • GNU/Linux

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • 9to5Linux Weekly Roundup: August 22nd, 2021

        This has been a great week for Linux news as we got new major releases of Manjaro, Zorin OS, SparkyLinux, MATE desktop, IPFire, and LibreOffice. On top of that, Ubuntu users got a new Linux kernel update, and gamers can now play even more Windows games with Valve’s newest Proton release.

        For bleeding-edgers, there’s new beta releases of Krita 5.0 and MX Linux 21 Fluxbox, which is now a standalone edition for Fluxbox lovers. You can enjoy these and much more in 9to5Linux’s Linux weekly roundup for August 22nd, 2021, below!

      • Linux Weekly Roundup #144

        We had a full, wonderful week in the world of Linux releases with Deepin 20.2.3, CarbonUI, Zorin OS 16 Core, Manjaro 21.1, SparkyLinux 6.0, KaOS 2021.08, Pardus Linux 21.0, Pisi Linux 2.2.1, and MX 21-beta1 "Fluxbox".

        LibreOffice 7.2 has also been released this week!

    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • People That Spend Time "Configuring"...Are They Wasting Time? - Invidious

        Do you like to configure your desktop (aka. ricing)? Do you like playing with different window managers? Do you like configuring extensible text editors like Vim or Emacs? Do you like "playing around" on Linux and learning new things? Some people in the community will tell you that this is a waste of time.

      • Unicode Domains Are An Absolute Hack - Invidious

        I recently discovered that Unicode domains exist so I thought it'd be to explain how this is possible while still keeping the internet compatible with all manor of ancient hardware still in use.

      • Manjaro 21.1

        Today we are looking at Manjaro 21.1. It comes with Linux Kernel 5.13, based on Arch, KDE Plasma 5.22, and uses about 1.8GB of ram when idling. Enjoy!

      • Manjaro 21.1 Run Through - Invidious

        In this video, we are looking at Manjaro 21.1, the KDE edition. Enjoy!

    • Kernel Space

      • Linux 5.14-rc7
        So things continue to look normal, and unless there is any last-minute
        panic this upcoming week, this is likely the last rc before a final
        5.14. Much of the discussion I saw last week was about things slated
        for the next merge window, and nothing in here looks particularly
        strange or scary.

        Most of the changes here are drivers (GPU and networking stand out), and the rest is pretty random stuff: arch, tracing, core networking, a couple of VM fixes..

        So please give this all some final testing to make sure we're all ready for the release,

      • Linux 5.14 Stable Likely Coming Next Weekend, 5.14-rc7 Released Today - Phoronix

        The Linux 5.14 cycle is playing out smoothly and will likely lead to the Linux 5.14 stable kernel release happening next weekend.

        Linus Torvalds just released Linux 5.14-rc7 as the newest weekly test candidate. Overall, Linus is happy with where things stand at the moment, so unless any big surprises come about this will be the last release candidate.

      • Kernel prepatch 5.14-rc7 []

        The 5.14-rc7 kernel prepatch has been released. "So things continue to look normal, and unless there is any last-minute panic this upcoming week, this is likely the last rc before a final 5.14."

      • Linux On The Apple M1 Can Now Boot To The GNOME Desktop But Lacking Acceleration - Phoronix

        Running Linux on the Apple M1 with various out-of-tree patches is now capable of booting to a GNOME desktop albeit lacking any OpenGL/graphics acceleration.

        Alyssa Rosenzweig as one of the prominent Asahi Linux developers working to port Linux to the Apple M1 announced the milestone this evening. She was able to get Debian booted on the Apple M1 to reaching the GNOME Shell desktop environment.

      • Reiser4/Reiser5 File-System Driver Updated For Linux 5.13 - Phoronix

        While Linux 5.14 stable is expected next weekend, the Reiser4 (and experimental Reiser5) file-system driver code has been finally updated for compatibility with the Linux 5.13 kernel series.

        Reiser5 is promising on the technical front with many significant feature improvements over Reiser4 but neither have a clear trajectory at this point for getting mainlined into the Linux kernel due to no major corporate backing and the past connection to convicted murderer Hans Reiser.

      • Intel Posts Patches Bringing Up DG2/Alchemist Discrete Video Memory For Linux

        Since the start of July we've seen Intel beginning Linux support patches for their DG2 graphics card that is now known by the "Alchemist" codename. There's been several rounds of DG2 patches since they started publicly pushing out the code -- including some notable work like DisplayPort 2.0 bring-up -- while sent out this Sunday is another important piece of the puzzle: getting the device memory (the dedicated vRAM) actually working with the open-source driver.

        Getting the device local memory working for DG2/Alchemist is obviously critical and also one of the areas where the bring-up around DG1 took a while since the open-source Intel Linux graphics driver previously has only ever needed to deal with system memory for the integrated graphics of prior generations. So since they began the DG1 bring-up they've had to restructure the driver to introduce the notion of device local memory while retaining the shared system memory code, beginning to work on TTM memory management support for managing that device memory, and various other changes now that Intel is entering the discrete graphics space with their forthcoming ARC graphics cards.

    • Applications

      • How AutoKey can make repetitive tasks, like configuring Netplan, easier

        I have a lot of repetitive tasks I do throughout the day. For example, I have to type out the same long header for articles regularly. At one point, I saved a file that contained the header contents but realized using it caused me extra clicks, all of which amounted to making my day a bit less efficient. There are also the Netplan configurations I make daily. I frequently deploy Ubuntu Server as a virtual machine, and having to always configure networking is just one more step I don't want to have to take.

        That's why I employ a little Linux tool called AutoKey, which is a GUI application for creating boilerplate text files and more complicated macros that can be used for just about anything. Once you've created a new "phrase" you can assign the phrase a hotkey. With the phrase complete, all you have to do is hit the hotkey and the phrase is then added to the document you are using.

        AutoKey also allows you to create "scripts," which are more advanced options that allow you to do things like open applications/files/folders, control window and mouse events, display menu entries to select from, and other things.

        I'm going to show you how to install AutoKey on a Debian-based distribution and then walk you through how to create a phrase that will paste the contents of Netplan into an open file.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • Add or Remove User From Group in Linux - Linux Nightly

        Linux is a multi-user opertating system. Linux also utilizes groups, which contain a set of user accounts. This makes it easier to assign correct permissions on various files throughout the system.

        For example, you could grant read and write access to the office group for a certain file, which means anyone in that group can read or write to the file. This is much more convenient than assigning file permissions to individual user accounts.

        In this guide, you’ll learn how to add a user to a group and remove a user from a group in Linux.

      • How to use Xubuntu on Raspberry Pi 4

        Xubuntu is an excellent desktop operating system, but did you know you can also use it on the Raspberry Pi 4? That’s right, thanks to Ubuntu for Raspberry Pi, it is possible to run your favorite Linux desktop distribution on the Pi 4. Here’s how to set it up.

      • How to set up and use Qutebrowser web browser on Linux

        If you’ve been on the lookout for a web browser for your Linux desktop that you can use without a mouse, this app is for you. Introducing Qutebrowser, the keyboard-based web browser. With it, users can do everything in the browser without leaving the keyboard. Here’s how to get it working.

      • How To Install Apache OpenOffice on Linux Mint 20 - idroot

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Apache OpenOffice on Linux Mint 20. For those of you who didn’t know, Apache OpenOffice is a free, open-source, and multi-platform software office suite. It provides a complete bundle of useful office applications like spreadsheets, presentations software, and drawing tools. Although OpenOffice uses a different file format than Microsoft Office, it can still open MS Office 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 Apache OpenOffice on a Linux Mint 20 (Ulyana).

      • Sparky Dist Upgrade script

        According to the last Sparky 6.0 release, and created new testing repository for Sparky 7 (next stable), there are 2 separated scripts which lets you upgrade your Sparky installation: * from Sparky 5 (oldstable) to 6 (stable)

    • Games

      • Quake Remaster's New MachineGames Episodes, Explained

        Amidst 2021's QuakeCon festivities, Bethesda and id Software released a remaster of the original Quake seemingly out of nowhere, featuring not only the game's original campaign and a number of technical updates, but its original two expansion episodes and two more created by MachineGames. The remastered version of Quake runs effortlessly on console and PC, supports resolutions up to 4K, and even lets everything jump into the same deathmatch lobbies thanks to quick play. It also canonizes two brand new episodes of the game developed by MachineGames. Best known for their updated take on Wolfenstein, both Dimension of the Past and Dimension of the Machine show up on the main menu alongside the original campaigns, expanding the breadth of this classic FPS and providing brand new content to a hungry retro FPS audience.

      • Why Steam Deck’s change of Linux distros could be a winning move [Ed: This site may be dubious]
    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • Suraj Kumar Mahto: Winding up GSoC 2021

          Here comes the ending of the 10 week GSoC program. This project has been a roller coaster ride for me. With initial weeks of struggling to understand the large codebase to this point. Week 9-10 revolved around testing all the changes done in the coding period. I had a virtual meet on the 7th of August with mentors. Thank you to them to organize a meet of their schedule, The meet after many weeks was great. Mentors asked for my feedback about the current progress. I presented my work and discussed some possible bugs that I found while working on the project. One of which was the renaming of quotes not working. Thomas said that it was solved a few days ago but not in the master branch since my ongoing work was in a branch off the master. We discussed how to rebase my branch from upstream and make it merge ready. I followed the instruction of mentors to demonstrate the working of kmymoney using sample data. We found that the GNUCash plugin doesn’t seem to work after changes. It later worked(probably wasn’t working due to a linking error with my local alkimia installation). The equity price update doesn’t seem to work. I think it was because of the incomplete porting of webpricequote APIs since I commented on all the csvquote usage which is to be ported after the GSoC timeline.

        • KDE Plasma 5.23 - New Features and Release Dates

          We round up the features of KDE Plasma 5.23 (upcoming) in this post, with major highlights and download/testing instructions.

    • Distributions

      • A refined 90s-style operating system you can actually use

        SerenityOS (github) is "a love letter to '90s user interfaces with a custom Unix-like core", wedding the simplicity and style of Windows 9x with all the features (and security) you'd expect from a modern distribution. It's not intended to be accessible to normals ("this project does not cater to non-technical users") and I wouldn't hold out for amenities such as more legible fonts, etc. For lovers of aesthetics something like Chicago95 or the Redmond Project might be more approchable.

      • New Releases

        • MX Linux 21 Fluxbox Is Ready for Public Beta Testing as a Full Standalone Edition

          Previously available as an add-on to the flagship MX Linux Xfce edition, MX-Fluxbox is now a full standalone edition that you can download for both 64-bit and 32-bit computers, featuring all the goodness of the super lightweight Fluxbox window manager with a few traditional Xfce apps.

          MX Linux 21 Fluxbox will be released as part of the upcoming MX Linux 21 “Wildflower” release and comes with a limited set of applications pre-installed by default than the flagship edition featuring the Xfce desktop environment, as well as a customized Fluxbox-powered desktop experience.

        • Manjaro 21.1 ‘Pahvo’ Released: What’s New And How To Update?

          A new release (Pahvo) of one of the popular Arch-based distributions, Manjaro, is live. The release brings a lot of new updates and improvements in desktop environments.

          TLDR; the GNOME variant now ships with the latest GNOME 40, and the Xfce and KDE Plasma variants have also been updated to their latest versions, 4.16 and 5.22, respectively.

      • BSD

        • Recent and not so recent changes in OpenBSD that make life better (and may turn up elsewhere too)

          Known to be "functional, free and secure by default", the OpenBSD operating system has played an important role in open source for more than a quarter century. It has also been fairly central to what I have done for the last two decades and some. What follows is my personal view of what life with OpenBSD has been like, with an emphasis on moments and developments that I feel made life, or at least my life, better.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • Jonathan Carter, Matthew Miller & Debian, Fedora: Community, Cult, Fraud

          If a Project is temporary, being a "Project Member" is a nonsense term.

          Being a "Project Member" means one thing: being inferior to a real Member.

          Debian is not a Project and it is not an organization. Debian is simply a trademark owned by a US organization, Software in the Public Interest, Inc. A "Project Member" is a not a real member of this organization. A "Project Member" doesn't get to attend the annual meeting, nominate for the committee or vote for the committee. Therefore, being a "Project Member" is somewhere between a fudge and a fraud.

          Membership is a human rights issue. Membership, like citizenship, confers rights. Using the term "Member" in an insincere manner is a fraud.

          Being a "Project Member" in Debian or Fedora is like having your money "invested" with Bernie Madoff or Allen Stanford. Debian memberships, Fedora memberships and Ponzi schemes have a lot in common.

          Fedora Developer Ahmad Haghighi has recently written about being erased from Matthew Miller's so called Fedora "Community". Miller has erased Ahmad in much the same way that Hitler erased Jews.

          Ahmad's blog was censored by the Fedora Planet. Fortunately, independent developers set up the alternative site and Ahmad's story can be told today.

      • Debian Family

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Stephen Michael Kellat: Late August Update

          I learned about edbrowse from the latest episode of the Ubuntu Podcast. If I ever wind up using an actual teletype for a terminal that might be quite handy.


          The testing manifest for Impish Indri shows only vanilla Ubuntu desktop shipping an image for Raspberry Pi. Considering my working “desktop” at the moment is a Raspberry Pi 4, any testing efforts on my part may wind up limited as I do not normally test vanilla Ubuntu desktop.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Blender 2.93.3

        Blender is the free and open source 3D creation suite. It supports the entirety of the 3D pipeline—modeling, rigging, animation, simulation, rendering, compositing and motion tracking, even video editing and game creation. Through it's open architecture, Blender provides cross-platform interoperability, extensibility, an incredibly small footprint, and a tightly integrated workflow. Blender is one of the most popular Open Source 3D graphics application in the world.

      • FSF

        • GNU Projects

          • GNU Parallel 20210822 ('Kabul') released

            GNU Parallel 20210822 ('Kabul') has been released. It is available for download...


            If you like GNU Parallel record a video testimonial: Say who you are, what you use GNU Parallel for, how it helps you, and what you like most about it. Include a command that uses GNU Parallel if you feel like it.

          • MyGNUHealth maintenance release 1.0.4 is out!

            Dear community

            I am pleased to announce the maintanance release 1.0.4 from MyGNUHealth, the GNUHealth Personal Health Record.

            It fixes plotting issues when matplotlib uses unsorted records or dup batch inputs.

            You can see the Changelog at GNU Savannah mercurial server.

            The package is at, the Python Package Index (PyPi) and different GNU/Linux distributions. Happy and healthy hacking!


      • Programming/Development

        • Go can only get better: v1.17 hones in on performance and security

          It has been a while since a Go release included some actual language enhancements, but version 1.17 looks to change things up. The now available update to the Google-bred programming language also offers some security improvements, advancements in lazy loading, and help with deprecations.

          Two of the language enhancements, unsafe.Add and unsafe.Slice, are meant to help developers write code that follows the rules for valid pointer use. While Add adds a len argument to a pointer and returns the updated pointer, Slice “returns a slice whose underlying array starts at ptr and whose length and capacity are len” for expression ptr of type *T, unsafe.Slice(ptr, len). Other than that Go now allows the conversion of a slice into an array pointer.

          The Go team also implemented a new way of passing function arguments via registers which should speed up packages and programs when compared to the old approach that used the stack for that. Backwards compatibility with assembly functions is maintained through adapter functions the compiler generates. These convert calling conventions and shouldn’t be noticeable in most cases, however the team notes that a small overhead is to be expected when “calling an assembly function indirectly from Go via a func value, and calling Go functions from assembly”.

        • Shell/Bash/Zsh/Ksh

          • An Opinionated Guide to xargs

            Apologies to the author for the criticism, but it generated a great discussion! Here is what lies ahead:

            An introduction to xargs, and a discussion of alternatives.

            Tips on using it, accompanied by #sample-code in the blog-code/xargs directory.

            High-level thoughts on shell and the Oil language.

          • Get all lines that start with a dot or period

            $ grep '^\.' file

  • Leftovers

    • Hardware

    • Health/Nutrition

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Security

          • Post Office is new prime target in UK parcel delivery phishing attacks

            The coronavirus pandemic resulted in the closure of many bricks and mortar retail stores, forcing UK consumers to adopt online shopping more than ever before. This trend has largely continued in spite of many stores since reopening, as millions of consumers have become accustomed to the practical benefits of online shopping.

            Along with this increased volume of online shopping came a new trend of phishing attacks where cybercriminals impersonate parcel delivery companies in an attempt to steal financial details from their victims. Royal Mail and Hermes were popular targets for these types of attack, but most new attacks now impersonate the Post Office.


            These attacks can be surprisingly effective, as when a consumer makes an online purchase, it is not always apparent who will be responsible for delivering it. This can also be true when placing repeat orders with the same company - for example, Amazon UK uses several different delivery companies but does not let the customer choose which one they want to use, nor does it indicate at the time of purchase which one will be used.

            Hence when the customer receives an unsolicited text message regarding a parcel that could not be delivered, any victim who has recently placed an order online could easily regard it as an expected text message and fall for the attack regardless of which parcel company the phishing site impersonates.

          • How I Got Suckered by an (Alleged) $10M Phone Scam
          • Pakistan's tax office services go dark after migration project goes awry [Ed: Microsoft Windows TCO is huge; it's not suitable for serious work]

            A Hyper-V attack is certainly a plausible explanation for the incident, as CVE-2021-28476 can crash hosts. The bug was patched in May 2021 but the FBR would hardly be alone in being a few months behind on patching.

          • Education Sector Sees Cyber Attacks Jump, Check Point Says [iophk: Windows TCO]

            Organizations around the world suffered a jump in cyberattacks in July as compared to the first half of the year, with education the most impacted sector and Israel one of the most affected countries, Israeli cybersecurity company Check Point Software Technologies said in a blog post.

          • Privacy/Surveillance

    • Defence/Aggression

      • Opinion | America’s Merchants of Death Then — and Now

        We denizens of the 21st century have become somewhat accustomed — inured might be the better word — to the murderous mass violence of modern warfare. We shouldn’t find that at all surprising. The 20th century that gave most of us birth, after all, rates as the deadliest century in human history. Upwards of 75 million people died in World War II alone. Millions more have died in “little” wars since, including the nearly quarter-million who perished during the 20 years of the U.S. military war in and on Afghanistan.

      • Biden Can Avoid Being Defined by Afghanistan If He Learns the Lessons of History
      • Opinion | The Endless Shadow of the War on Terror

        It ended in chaos and disaster.  Kabul has fallen and Joe Biden is being blamed (by congressional Republicans in particular) for America’s now almost-20-year disaster in Afghanistan.  But is the war on terror itself over? Apparently not. 

      • US Public Clear: War in Afghanistan Wasn't Worth It

        As corporate media amplify pro-war voices to cover developing events in Afghanistan, two polls out Sunday showed the U.S. public has little appetite for continuing the 20-year war.

        A new CBS News/YouGov survey, conducted August 18-20, found that 63% approve of President Joe Biden's decision to pull troops out of Afghanistan, and just 37% disapprove. Just 47%, however, approve of the way Biden is handling the troop withdrawal.

      • Generation of Vipers

        At that time, there was a modern, secular regime in Afghanistan. It wasn’t a paradise. It was ridden by internal factionalism, sometimes violent. It was supported by the Soviet Union. It was beset by fundamentalist extremists. It had repressive features. But it was a secular regime. Women were emancipated; many held high positions. Children, including girls, were educated. Science was honored and promoted. Religion was tolerated, albeit uneasily.

      • Robert Reich on Afghanistan

        Yes, the exit could have been better planned and executed. Yes, it’s all horribly sad. But can we get a grip? The sudden all-consuming focus on Afghanistan is distracting us from hugely important stuff that’s coming to a head at home...

      • Anti-war veterans explain how US lost Afghanistan while leaders lied, profited
    • Environment

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • Taliban killing those found with Bible apps on their cellphones

        An “unstoppable” media ministry in the Middle East is proving to be a lifeline for isolated Christians in Afghanistan, as the resurgent Taliban go door-to-door, executing believers who refuse to renounce their faith.

        Taliban militants are even pulling people off public transport and killing them on the spot if they’re Christians or considered ethnically “unpure,” according to shocking reports from Middle East media ministry SAT-7 (

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • The Curious Case of Stephen Breyer

        Put more nastily, Breyer’s ascent to the Supreme Court offers an unpleasing paradigm for the utter bankruptcy and degradation of that liberal tradition of which Kennedy was erroneously supposed to be the custodian and stout defender. Those with short memories often ascribe certain familiar features of the socio-economic landscape to the “Reagan Revolution.” Such features center on the erosion of government regulations unwelcome to big business.

      • Taliban 'flog young Afghans for wearing jeans'

        A group of young Afghans have said they were flogged by Taliban fighters for the crime of wearing jeans.

        In a post widely shared on Facebook, an Afghan youth said they were “walking with friends in Kabul,” when they encountered a group of Taliban soldiers who accused them of disrespecting Islam.

        Two of the friends escaped, the youth said, but the others were beaten, whipped on their necks and threatened at gunpoint.

      • Judge rules California Prop 22 gig workers law is unconstitutional

        California’s gig workers law, which allows companies like Uber and Lyft to treat workers as independent contractors— not employees— has been ruled unconstitutional and unenforceable by a judge. Voters approved the law as ballot initiative Proposition 22 in November, with companies like Uber, Lyft and DoorDash spending more than $200 million to campaign for the measure. Labor organizations, including the Service Employees International Union, opposed it.

    • Monopolies

      • Serious IPR infringers to be listed in China [Ed: Quit using the term "IPR" as it contains 3 falsehoods and misnomers]

        Haiyu Li and Tingxi Huo of the MARQUES China Team introduce new Rules that are likely to be welcomed by IP right holders in China.

        On 30 July 2021, the State Administration for Market Regulation (SAMR) released in its Order No 44 The Rules on Administrating the Seriously Illicit or Dishonest List in Market Supervision and Administration, which take effect from 1 September 2021. The Rules are made to enhance credit supervision and administration and honest self-discipline.

        According to the Rules, parties that have received the AMR’s heavy penalties will be put into the Seriously Illicit or Dishonest List to be published through the national enterprise credit system and shared with other organs.


        In particular, the list will include: unfair competition, trade secret infringement, willful IPR infringement, abnormal patent filing, bad-faith trade mark filing, and seriously illicit patent and trade mark agents.

        The Rules provide a list of factors to be thoroughly considered in deciding bad nature, serious scenarios and big social harms. These factors include: subjective bad faith, illicit frequency, duration, types of penalties, amounts of fines, product value, harm to people’s lives and health, asset loss and social influence, unless the relevant parties have sufficient evidence to prove the lack of subjective bad faith.

        The AMRs will decide whether to include the parties into the list when making decisions on administrative penalties and will publish the relevant information within 20 working days of decisions.

        The parties will be kept on the list for three years if no appeal or request for earlier removal is initiated. Listed parties will face stricter and more frequent inspections and cannot receive AMR awards.

      • Nonfungible tokens: A new paradigm for intellectual property assets? [Ed: There is no such thing as "intellectual property", but crypto 'currency' charlatans embrace the term anyway]

        Nonfungible tokens, or NFTs, are digital records of the ownership of assets. The asset types most commonly associated with NFTs are digital assets, such as artwork like memes, GIFs, or gaming characters or properties. Assets represented by NFTs, however, may be digital, physical, tangible or intangible. Examples of asset types that have been transferred or that have had their ownership recorded utilizing NFTs include sports memorabilia, copyrights in music, artwork and real estate. Intellectual property assets and, specifically, the ownership and transfer of ownership of patents may also be recorded and transferred as NFTs.

      • Intellectual Property Strategies To Best Protect Cannabis Related Innovations [Ed: Cannabis monopolised by opportunists; from illegal to monopoly]

        Current projections indicate that the cannabis industry will grow from $9.2 billion in 2017 to $47.3 billion in 2027[1]. Protection of intellectual property in this space is critical, particularly as large entities have slowly started to break in. For example, Coca-Cola has been in talks with Aurora Cannabis to develop drinks infused with CBD[2].

        However, knowing how to best protect and defend cannabis innovations can be challenging. A patent is a grant of a property right to an inventor that allows the inventor to exclude others from making, using, offering for sale, or selling an invention. The three types of patents include: plant patents, utility patents, and design patents.


        The most popular form of patent protection utilized in the cannabis space is the utility patent. Utility patents are commonly filed to protect methods of synthesis, compositions, processing steps, devices such as vaping devices, inhalers, transdermal, food and beverages, supplements etc. Utility patents are the most common form of patent protection for cannabis related inventions. Utility patents can be employed to protect innovations such as unique methods of extraction or synthesis as well as novel cannabis formulations such as formulations containing specific combinations of terpenes and cannabinoids.


        Other forms of protections for inventors to contemplate as part of an overall intellectual property strategy include both trademark and trade secret protection. Trademark protection is frequently employed to protect unique company and product names and logos. Trade secret protection is strategically utilized in conjunction with patent protection to protect inventions that may not be ripe for patenting. Working with well-versed patent counsel to evaluate and strategically protect cannabis inventions is imperative.

      • Conservatives promise to cut income tax for new technology staying in Canada

        Conservative Party leader Erin O’Toole made a stop in Waterloo Wednesday morning, promising to cut the income tax rate in half for new patented technologies developed in Canada if his party were to be elected to lead in the next federal election.

        “Far too often, Canada loses some of our best and brightest to places with fewer barriers, and more opportunities,” O’Toole said. “Too many promising startups, move to the U.S., or sell to foreign investors with deep pockets, who can fund their growth.”


        "Today’s policy announcement from the Conservative Party of Canada puts forward a serious plan for boosting the Canadian innovation economy. The focus on driving Canadian competitiveness in the 21st century demonstrates that the Conservative Party has listened to our members and understands the policies that would have a meaningful impact on the Canadian innovation ecosystem," Benjamin Bergen, executive director of the Council of Canadian Innovators, said in a statement. If elected, O’Toole said the Conservatives would also invest $5 billion over the next five years to fund an advanced research agency looking at cutting edge technology.

      • Patents

        • Federal Court of Appeal upholds decision finding Seedling’s LifeCard patent invalid and not infringed by Pfizer’s EpiPen

          On July 28, 2021, the Federal Court of Appeal (FCA) dismissed Seedling’s appeal from the Federal Court decision of Justice Grammond (2020 FC 1, previously reported), which concluded that certain claims of Seedling’s LifeCard patent, Patent No. 2,486,935 (935 Patent), were invalid and not infringed by Pfizer’s next generation EpiPen: Seedlings Life Science Ventures, LLC v Pfizer Canada ULC, 2021 FCA 154.

          The 935 patent relates to an auto-injection device, primarily used for the administration of epinephrine in treating symptoms of anaphylaxis.


          The Federal Court also held that some claims were anticipated and obvious in view of earlier auto-injector patents. Seedlings argued that the trial judge (1) misunderstood the doctrine of approbation and reprobation (i.e., accepting Pfizer’s position that a prior patent did not anticipate its next generation EpiPen patent but anticipated Seedling’s patent), and (2) engaged in a tortured reading of the prior art (i.e., finding that a prior patent taught a needle shield with three positions rather than only two positions). The FCA agreed with the trial judge that the doctrine of approbation and reprobation does not apply to this case and found no reviewable error in the trial judge’s analysis.

          While Pfizer’s allegation of insufficiency was dismissed at trial, the FCA found that all relevant claims of the 935 patent were also insufficient based on the trial judge’s finding that a skilled person would not know how to make a device without certain elements described in the disclosure but which do not appear in the claims.

        • Jury awards Optis $300 million in second patent trial against Apple [Ed: Rodney Gilstrap does it again; instead of delivering justice he treats his court like a corporation while ignoring law, case law, precedents, and common sense]

          A U.S. jury on Friday awarded Optis Wireless Technology LLC and several related companies $300 million in damages after a second patent trial against iPhone maker Apple Inc (AAPL.O).

          A jury had previously found that Apple had infringed five Optis wireless standard essential patents and awarded $506 million in damages, but U.S. District Judge Rodney Gilstrap in Marshall, Texas, vacated that award in April and ordered a new trial to determine the amount of damages.

          In a statement, Apple said: "Optis makes no products and its sole business is to sue companies using patents they accumulate. We will continue to defend against their attempts to extract unreasonable payments for patents they acquire."

        • Adial Pharmaceuticals Awarded U.S. and International Patents for the Treatment Of Alcohol and Opioid Use Disorders Using AD04
        • Parliamentary Standing Committee’s Recommendations Concerning AI and IP: A Little Late or Way too Early? [Ed: This buzzword disease of "HEY HI" has reached India as well]

          Appreciating the growing importance of AI in various fields as well as its economic impact, the Parliamentary Standing Committee Report (hereinafter the Report) recommended the ‘revisiting of IPR legislations and implementing a strong IPR framework’ in order to ‘extract benefits from AI’. (Pg 38) The Report relying on a research report by Accenture stated that AI related innovations might add USD 957 billion to the Indian economy by 2035. The Report does propose a bigger picture, but fails short of discussing any real issues or providing any implementable suggestions.

          Many glaring issues presented by the Report have been previously discussed by Prof Scaria (here), Praharsh (here), Adyasha (here) and Namratha (here and here).

          In this post, I will be analysing the recommendations pertaining to the amendment of patent laws in order to facilitate inventorship and ownership by AI. I will be restricting the discussion to the evaluation of the Indian patent regime, as the implications of AI on Indian copyright law has been previously dealt with here. The Report has also recommended the amendment of Section 3(k) of the Patents Act, 1970 and this will be analysed in a future post.


          The readers might remember that in 2017, Sophia, a robot was granted citizenship by Saudi Arabia. As great as this sounds, a robot lacks many qualities associated with humans, such as it does not have free will, interests or a soul. It is imprudent to give a robot or an AI the same rights as a human being, without properly examining the legal implications of the same. AI does not share the same attributes as humans, and perhaps, a different kind of legal status ought to be created keeping in mind their unique nature. The Report has also recommended that ‘a separate category of rights for AI and AI related inventions and solutions should be created for their protection as IPRs.’ (emphasis supplied)

          In 2017, the European Parliament adopted a resolution wherein they considered the possibility of a separate legal status for robots. They recommended:

          ‘creating a specific legal status for robots in the long run, so that at least the most sophisticated autonomous robots could be established as having the status of electronic persons responsible for making good any damage they may cause, and possibly applying electronic personality to cases where robots make autonomous decisions or otherwise interact with third parties independently;’ (emphasis supplied)

          ‘Electronic persons’ or some other kind of special status will have to be created in order to accommodate AI within the existing system. A sui generis system seems like an ideal solution.

        • The rebuild [Ed: "former senior joint controller of patents and designs at the Indian Patent Office" somehow becomes "IP", which is not a meaningful legal term; Also, EPO is not EU, so this flag is misplaced]

          The IP division at Delhi High Court may be a harbinger of a new era, but India would do well to look further afield for examples of best-practice IP dispute resolution, Argues KS Kardam, former senior joint controller of patents and designs at the Indian Patent Office

          The creation of the intellectual property division (IPD) within Delhi High Court is a significant step for efficiently handling IP matters in India.

          The IPD is consistent with the government’s 2016 national IPR policy, which prioritised improving India’s IP protection and enforcement systems. The IPD also aligns with global trends for the establishment of specialised tribunals.


          Article 21 of the European Patent Convention has provisions for establishing boards of appeal within the jurisdiction of the European Patent Office (EPO). These boards of appeal are responsible for appeals from decisions of the receiving section, the examining divisions, the opposition divisions and the legal division. Depending on the type of appeal, technically qualified members may be required.

          For instance, appeals from decisions of the receiving section or the legal division require three legally qualified members on the board of appeal. For appeals from decisions of an examining division, a board of appeal consists of two technically qualified members, and one legally qualified member when the decision of refusal of a European patent application, or the grant, limitation, or revocation of a European patent, has been taken by an examining division consisting of fewer than four members.

        • FOSS Patents: The Federal Patent Court's six-month target and 33-month reality: flawed patent reform straight from the ivory towers of Berlin

          Throughout the German patent "reform" process, I focused myopically on access to injunctive relief. A few days ago, on the occasion of the start of operation of the Munich I Regional Court's 44th Civil Chamber, I reiterated my belief that those who hoped to benefit from the new injunction statute (automotive, electronics, and telecommunications companies) are not going to pay less for patent royalties--they're just going to spend more money on litigation. Pharmaceutical companies going after plagiarists will likely be fine, but they do have a risk because of the psychological pressure it may put on a court if an injunction allegedly deprives patients of access to life-saving medications (one could see those dynamics in this year's political debate over access to COVID vaccines).

          What I treated with benign neglect was the second-most important part of the "reform" bill: the one that relates to stays of infringement proceedings pending parallel invalidation actions before the Federal Patent Court of Germany, the European Patent Office, or the German Patent & Trademark Office. But now that the measure has formally entered into force, it's overdue to conduct an impact assessment.


          Most of the people I talk to believe that there will be more. I'm not sure. My range of expectations goes from "no significant change" to "a slightly higher likelihood of stays." And while it's the least likely outcome, I seriously wouldn't rule out that this statutory change could even hurt defendants on the bottom line, with preliminary opinions that help defendants coming down on a timely basis mostly in cases in which the infringement courts would likely have stayed the proceedings anyway, and with a significant number of complex cases now leading to preliminary opinions that favor patentees just because the court will want to err on the side of caution and would need a lot more time (and further briefing) before it would really have the confidence to express the opinion that a patent is likely invalid. Those "agenda-setting" preliminary opinions may very well dissuade the infringement courts from stays they'd have granted if there simply had been no preliminary opinion available at decision time.

          The one who will not be to blame are the judges serving on the Federal Patent Court's nullity panels. Those judges know what kinds of companies lobbied for this bill. Their professional ethics will not allow them to intentionally disadvantage the automotive sector or Deutsche Telekom, nor do they have any reason to devalue any patents asserted against such companies by prematurely declaring them to be likely invalid. The six-month target is an utter stupidity.

        • Hilco NPE attacks Apple; UPC set for mid-2022; Data-driven healthcare patent surge; Chip crisis requires US innovation reboot; Dolby's Korean SEP fine; plus much more | IAM [Ed: IAM has once again interjected deliberate UPC lies into headlines]
        • Evaluating the restrictive nature of amending patent claims in India [Ed: Managing 'IP' is still taking money to reprinting self-promotional dross as 'articles']

          Archana Shanker and Aastha Koolwal of Anand and Anand assess the strict interpretation of Section 59 of the Indian Patent Act and explore the limits of claim amendments allowed in India

        • Software Patents

          • TikTok parent company joins OIN

            ByteDance, the parent company of social media platform TikTok, has joined Open Invention Network, OIN announced on Tuesday, August 17.

            OIN cross-licenses Linux System patents among over 3,500 members. The network helps businesses manage litigation risk from both operating companies and non-practising entities (NPEs).

            Lynn Wu, chief IP counsel at ByteDance in Beijing, said in a statement that the company viewed Linux and adjacent open-source software as key elements for its business.

            “ByteDance’s participation in the OIN community shows our consistent commitment to shared innovation. We will continue to support it with patent non-aggression in core Linux and other important OSS technologies.”

            Keith Bergelt, CEO of OIN, said in a statement that the network was glad that ByteDance was looking to do its part to mitigate global patent risk for open-source software by joining OIN, and demonstrating its commitment to collaborative innovation and patent non-aggression in open source.

            In February, ByteDance also joined the LOT Network, whose participants sign up for an agreement where if any member company ever sells a patent to an NPE, that patent will be licensed to all of the network’s signatories.

          • MyMail, Ltd. v. ooVoo, LLC (Fed. Cir. 2021)

            Two years ago, MyMail and ooVoo went to the mat in the Federal Circuit over claims that the District Court for the Northern District of California found ineligible under 35 U.S.C. § 101. Patent holder MyMail was able to convince two out of three judges on the Federal Circuit panel that the dispute between the parties regarding claim construction required a remand to the Distract Court. Now, with claims construed and once more found ineligible by the District Court judge, MyMail again appeals.


            MyMail argued, somewhat circularly, that the "claims are instead directed to an improvement in the functionality of the software updating process . . . via a Pinger process or a MOT script." But the Court found nothing in the specification that supported this notion, and stated that MyMail's arguments regarding the alleged improvement were conclusory.

            Moving on to part two, the Court also found no inventive concept in the claims. In particular, the Court found the claimed computer components to be generic and their functions to be routine. The Court took a dim view toward the lack of specificity in how the claimed functions are performed, even when considered as an ordered combination in light of the claim construction.

            Finally, MyMail cited to its success in avoiding and overcoming prior art challenges at the PTAB. But MyMail pushed this too far, arguing that it was incorrect for the District Court to ignore those proceedings. The Court adopted reasoning that we have seen since 2014's Ultramercial v. Hulu -- that claims found novel and/or non-obvious do not automatically have an inventive concept. Instead, "a claim for a new abstract idea is still an abstract idea."

            This aesthetically unsatisfying doctrine is best understood in terms of the three qualities noted above. Even if there was some daylight between the claimed invention and the prior art, this difference needs to be a specifically-claimed technical improvement. Since the Court found no technical improvement and implied that the claims were vague, at least two of the three qualities were missing.

            Thus, the Court found the claims to lack patentability under § 101.

      • Trademarks

        • Germany: Additional protection for Lindt’s chocolate bunny

          According to the German Federal Supreme Court’s decision of 29 July 2021 (Case I ZR 139/20) the gold-colored foil of Lindt’s chocolate bunny is protected by a trademark acquired through use. The Court lifted the decision of the Higher District Court Munich which had rejected an infringement action against a competing product denying trademark protection for the gold-colored foil. The case was remitted to the Higher District Court Munich for a new decision.

          The infringement action is another attempt by Lindt to enjoin competitors from marketing chocolate bunny products wrapped in gold foil. Efforts to obtain protection for the shape of the gold foil wrapped chocolate bunny as an EU trademark came to an end with the European Court of Justice’s decision denying trademark protection dated 24 May 2012 (case C-98/11 P). Attempts to enforce Lindt‘s EU trademark protecting the shape of the chocolate bunny including the wording “LINDT Goldhase” against competitor’s gold foil wrapped chocolate bunny finally failed in Germany due to lack of likelihood of confusion (Decision of Higher District Court Frankfurt dated 27.10.2011 in Case 6 U 10/03).


          It will have to do this now following the Federal Supreme Court’s remittal which confirmed the existence of an unregistered abstract color mark in Lindt’s favor in relation to chocolate bunnies. The decision is not yet available in full. According to the Federal Supreme Court’s press release there was sufficient evidence that the golden foil of the Lindt Goldhase had acquired reputation as a trademark for chocolate bunnies among the relevant public. The survey submitted showed that the degree of association of the gold tone used for the foil in the field of chocolate bunnies with Lindt is over 70%, and thus clearly exceeds the required threshold of 50%. It confirmed that for proving reputation of an abstract color mark it is not required that the color is used as house mark on all or numerous products. Also, it does not speak against reputation of the gold color that it is used together with further design elements (specific shape, red collar with golden bell etc.). The fact that the golden color is also used for other chocolate bunnies must be examined in the context of likelihood of confusion.

        • Around the IP Blogs

          Lindt’s bunnies are once again in the heart of trade mark case law [earlier instances were reported here and here by The IPKat]. The German Federal Supreme Court has ruled that the golden foil Lindt’s bunnies are protected by trade mark rights. Kluwer Trademark Blog reported here on this ruling.

        • New Balance Claims that Michael Kors is Infringing its Famed Trademarks Via Lookalike Sneakers

          In the midst of trademark battles in China, New Balance is policing its famous “N” and the source-identifying design of its 574 sneaker in the U.S., with the sneaker-maker filing suit against Michael Kors, arguing that the fashion brand “recently began using an N design on footwear that is virtually identical and confusingly similar to” its own mark, as well as the trade dress-protected design of its 574 sneakers. According to the complaint that it filed in a federal court in Massachusetts on Wednesday, New Balance claims that Kors’ “intentional adoption of a letter N on footwear is likely to cause confusion among consumers and/or suggest an affiliation, connection, or association [with] New Balance” when no such affiliation exists.

          Setting the stage in the newly-filed complaint, New Balance assets that it has “exclusively used the letter N as a trademark on footwear since the 1970s,” selling “hundreds of millions of pairs of shoes bearing N Marks worldwide, which represent many billions of dollars in sales.” Beyond the N trademark, alone, New Balance assets that it has made “long-standing and widespread use of the N Mark with saddle device, and the 574 trade dress,” the latter of which is the company’s “best-selling shoe worldwide, with sales of more than 7,000,000 pairs projected in 2021. It is one of the most popular athletic shoe designs sold by any manufacturer in the world.”

      • Copyrights

        • TorrentFreak News Article Targeted by Dubious 'DRM Circumvention Complaint

          The American Society of Composers has asked Google to remove hundreds of URLs from its search results. The flagged pages are accused of 'circumventing DRM' but the anti-piracy outfit casts its net too wide. One of the reported links points to a TorrentFreak news article about a DRM circumvention lawsuit.

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