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At System76, we empower the world’s curious and capable makers of tomorrow with custom Linux computers.
Updated: 5 hours 35 min ago

The New Firmware Manager: Updating firmware across Linux distributions

Saturday 17th of August 2019 01:34:58 PM

Over the past few months, System76 has been developing a simple, easy-to-use tool for updating firmware on Pop!_OS and System76 hardware. Today, we’re excited to announce that you can now check and update firmware through Settings on Pop!_OS, and through the firmware manager GTK application on System76 hardware running other Debian-based distributions.

One of the issues we faced with with firmware management on Linux was the lack of options for graphical frontends to firmware management services like fwupd and system76-firmware. For fwupd, the only solutions available were to distribute either GNOME Software or KDE Discover, which is not viable for Linux distributions which have their own application centers, or frontends to package managers. For system76-firmware, an official GTK application existed, but it only supported updating System76 firmware, when it would be more ideal if it could support updating firmware from both services.

fwupd is a system service which connects to LVFS to check for firmware updates to a wide variety of hardware from multiple vendors. system76-firmware is our own system service which connects to System76 to check for firmware updates for System76 hardware. Privacy To increase privacy, we have disabled telemetry reporting in fwupd on Pop!_OS.

To solve this problem, we’ve been working on the Firmware Manager project, which we will be shipping to all Pop!_OS users, and System76 hardware customers on  other Debian-based distributions. It supports checking and updating firmware from LVFS and system76-firmware services, is Wayland-compatible, and provides both a GTK application and library.

Wayland disallows applications from being run as root, so applications must either call pkexec to prompt the user for permission to run a background process that is root, or connect to an existing background service provided the needed capabilities.

In Pop!_OS, the firmware manager will be integrated into GNOME Settings in a new Firmware panel under the Devices category with the GTK widget library. Users can simply install the latest updates to use the firmware manager. For other Linux distributions, and for those who do not use GNOME, the GTK application is available to provide the firmware manager widget as a standalone application in its own application window.

Although we’ve created a GTK application and widget library for our use in Pop!_OS, the core framework is toolkit-agnostic, thereby enabling firmware manager frontends to be written in any toolkit. However, it should be noted that since the framework is written in Rust, frontends would need to use Rust in order to interact with it.

GNOME Settings Integration

Pop!_OS will be integrating a patch into GNOME Settings which embeds the GTK widget into a new Firmware panel in the Devices category section.

GTK Application

On System76 hardware running Ubuntu, the firmware manager application will replace System76 Firmware as the source of firmware updates. Other Linux distributions which would prefer to have a standalone desktop application are free to use the included GTK application.

Implementation Details

Like all of our projects today, it is written in Rust, and adheres to current best practices. The project is configured as a workspace, with the core crate providing a generic library for discovering and managing firmware from multiple firmware services. Both fwupd and system76-firmware are supported.

The core is used as the foundation for the two members of this workspace: a notification binary to provide desktop notifications about firmware updates; and a GTK project which serves as both a widget library and desktop application.

Visualization of project structure

* firmware-manager * firmware-manager-notify * firmware-manager-gtk * firmware-manager-gtk-ffi

Core Library

The firmware-manager library provides functions for scanning firmware, as well as an event loop which receives and sends event signals through channels. One channel receives messages from the frontend, whereas the other sends messages to the frontend. This is designed to be run in a background thread in order to prevent a UI that uses the firmware manager from blocking as requests are being processed.

Additionally, the event API is expected to be used with the provided slotmap-based entity-component architecture. This allows a frontend to assign entity IDs to their requests, and receive those entity IDs back in responses. In doing so, frontends can avoid the need for complex runtime reference-counting, or creating reference cycles. The frontend has exclusive ownership of the data that an entity ID refers to.

GTK Application / Library

The firmware-manager-gtk member of the project provides the firmware widget as a library, and an application which places that widget into a window. This member contains a C FFI sub-member, which builds a dynamic library with a C API and header, and can be used to integrate the widget into any GTK application written in C.

This implementation takes full advantage of the slotmap EC, assigning its own component storages to keep track of state relative to a device entity, such as the widgets assigned to an entity, and information about their firmware.

The included GTK application statically-links the Rust widget library into the binary.

Notification Binary

The firmware-manager-notify member comes with a systemd user timer so that it is executed at login, and then periodically run again at set intervals to check for updates again. When updates are found, a clickable notification will be displayed, which will either open the Firmware panel in GNOME Settings, or the standalone desktop application, depending on which is available on the system.

Supporting Other Frontends

Although the project will release with only a GTK frontend, it is possible for anyone to use it as the foundations for developing a frontend written in any other graphical toolkit. All functionality in the core library is GUI-agnostic, and the entity-component architecture can be extended to their specialized needs. If you write a frontend for another toolkit and want it included in the project, feel free to submit a pull request!

For more details on the new firmware manager, check out Michael Aaron Murphy’s article on GitHub.

Open firmware and more news from July

Tuesday 30th of July 2019 04:00:30 PM

July kicked off in style with our Summer Flock Party, where we shook our tail feathers off to the tune of haikus and Margaritaville covers. (Some were sung by parrots!) Congratulations to those who cracked our code; we admire your dedication to the fine art of parrot spotting. Here’s the code in all its glory:

Stay tuned for more info on Superfan 3! As for our progress in July, read on for more about updates to our open firmware, Thelio, and Pop!_OS, and see what conferences you’ll find us at in the coming months.


OPEN FIRMWARE

System76 has been granted a Thunderbolt license, meaning that we can now integrate Thunderbolt compatibility into our open firmware. This is a huge development in the open firmware project, as we can now achieve full functionality of Thunderbolt in our machines once the firmware is implemented.

The open firmware is now functional on the Gazelle when running on Intel graphics. This will not yet be integrated, however, as more work is necessary to get the NVIDIA graphics up and running.


HARDWARE

In case you missed it, Thelio has been updated with AMD Gen 3 Ryzen CPUs. Now you can configure Thelio with faster Ryzen CPUs, including the brand new Ryzen 9 3900X. Backed by 12 Cores and 24 Threads, the Ryzen 9 is AMD’s most powerful Ryzen CPU yet, boasting performance comparable to Intel’s Core i9 CPU.

Thelio Massive, the Jackal Pro 1U, the Jackal Pro 2U, and the Ibex Pro can now be configured with 2nd Gen Intel Xeon Scalable processors. The new CPUs are equipped with up to 28 Cores and 56 Threads, and have a higher Memory frequency and overall capacity than the previous generation.


Pop!_OS

The NVIDIA driver has been updated to version 430.34. This update enables support for NVIDIA GeForce RTX Super GPUs. This is welcome news for those looking to upgrade, as NVIDIA’s newest graphics cards are even faster versions of the RTX line.

Pop!_OS 18.10 has reached End of Life, meaning it will not be receiving any more updates. In order to ensure that your system remains secure and up to date, you will need to upgrade your OS to version 19.04. Pop!_OS 18.04 users can disregard this message, as they will continue to enjoy that fresh code scent that comes with new updates. Pop!_OS 18.04 is a Long-Term Support (LTS) version, and will see continued support in the years ahead.

To see what version of Pop!_OS you’re currently using, open up the Settings application and click Details at the bottom of the sidebar menu.

To upgrade Pop!_OS 18.10 to 19.04, simply enter these commands into the terminal:

sudo apt update

sudo apt install pop-desktop

sudo apt full-upgrade

do-release-upgrade

Upgrading your OS will give you access to new features, such as Slim Mode and the new Dark Mode. You will also receive updates for security patches and upcoming features, including persistent power profile and backlight settings, once they are released. There’s a lot more to see on the way!


EVENTS

August 23–27: We will be in Thessaloniki, Greece to attend GUADEC this year. Come by our booth to discuss free software, Linux, penguins, and parrots, or even just to say Γεια. 

September 3–6: We’re also headed to the Open Firmware Summit in California. Conference attendees will have the chance to learn about our open firmware project as we break down our process for replacing the proprietary firmware on the Darter Pro with open source firmware. If you’re attending, feel free to visit us at our booth!


PRESS

Destination Linux (48:30 – 56:46)

Zeb, Noah, Michael, and Ryan discuss System76’s commitment to the Linux desktop.

Forbes

Jason Evangelho compares benchmarks for Windows 10 and Pop!_OS.

Chris Titus Tech
Chris teaches his 8-year-old daughter how to install Linux.

Softpedia News

Marius Nestor provides details on Thelio’s new 3rd Gen AMD Ryzen CPUs.

Matthew Buscemi

Former Dell and Mac user Matthew Buscemi shares his thoughts on his new Thelio.

Pop!_OS 18.10 will no longer receive security updates.

Thursday 18th of July 2019 04:56:38 PM

Pop!_OS 18.10 has reached End of Life today, meaning it will not be receiving any more updates. In order to ensure that your system remains secure and up to date, you will need to upgrade your OS to version 19.04. Pop!_OS 18.04 users can disregard this message, as they will continue to enjoy that fresh code scent that comes with new updates.

To see what version of Pop!_OS you’re currently using, open up the Settings application and click Details at the bottom of the sidebar menu.

To upgrade Pop!_OS 18.10 to 19.04, simply enter these commands into the terminal:

sudo apt update

sudo apt install pop-desktop

sudo apt full-upgrade

do-release-upgrade

Upgrading your OS will give you access to new features, such as Slim Mode and the new Dark Mode. You will also receive updates for security patches and upcoming features, including persistent power profile and backlight settings, once they are released. There’s a lot more to see on the way!

Announcing our Summer Flock Party Event, and more news from June!

Thursday 27th of June 2019 04:45:02 PM

Summer is here, so we’re having a Flock Party! Now until July 9th, join us on our website for discounts on laptops and desktops, and even more discounts with upgrades!

To make our Flock Party even more colorful, we’ve enlisted the help of 17 parrots to hide out around our site. If you’re one of the first 10 to find them all and unscramble the code, we’ll have something special for you!

Along with our parrot mania, we have info for you on hardware, Pop!_OS, firmware, and Thelio manufacturing. Read on to see what’s new in June!


HARDWARE: Return of the Gazelle

Earlier this month, we brought the Gazelle back from laptop limbo. The refresh adds NVIDIA 16-Series GPUs to the mix for a boost in graphics performance. With Pop!_OS or Ubuntu on System76 hardware, users can easily toggle between Intel and NVIDIA graphics from their desktop on the Gazelle.

NVIDIA 16-Series GPUs work in harmony with a 9th Gen i7 Core CPU and up to 64GB RAM for the ultimate performance combo. The laptop is available in either a 15” or 17” 1080p display.

Configure your Gazelle here


Pop!_OS: Big projects see big progress

Pop-upgrade

The next task on the list for the new upgrade process for Pop!_OS is the handling of the Refresh OS feature. A button is being added in GNOME settings to enable selecting the current OS for performing a refresh install. Once the new upgrade process is implemented, GNOME Settings will also receive fixes to allow the refresh OS mode to be cancelled at any point, should the user decide that they’ve changed their mind.

System76-power

The power daemon has seen a few fixes to power profiles and fan curves this month.

  • Error messaging is now more descriptive as to where and why an error occurred.
  • Fixed an issue where changing the power profile would not yield a change in certain scenarios.
  • Signal handling was added to the power daemon to fix an error that occurred when switching to an automatic fan curve.

Patches

A number of patches have been made this month as well. These patches address performance issues on NVIDIA hardware, theme-related bugs, updating packages, and increasing desktop performance and responsiveness under high loads. You can follow patches and other Pop!_OS-related updates on Michael Aaron Murphy’s This Week in Pop series.


FIRMWARE: Expanding testing and adding UI

Our open firmware has entered testing on the Gazelle, but is still in the very early stages. These tests are on the new model, but the open firmware is not yet ready to be implemented on users’ machines and has therefore not yet replaced the current firmware.

A UI element for firmware updates is also in development. The plan is for users to be notified when an update is available through GNOME Settings.


THELIO MANUFACTURING: Increasing oven capacity

The oven and oven racks have been rebuilt, increasing the number of chassis that can be heated in a single “batch”. The ovens are used as a later step in the powder-coating process.


PRESS

Best Alternatives to Mac and Macbook

Wired’s Scott Gilbertson and Brendan Nystedt name Thelio as the sole Linux example to compete with the Mac Pro.


A REALLY Weird Cool PC

Linus Tech Tips reviews Thelio (Hypnotoad backgrounds included).


Choose Linux: Oryx Pro First Impressions

Jason Evangelho provides his first impressions on his new Oryx Pro. (Clip starts at 19:05)


“I’m seeing it spread almost virally.”

Andy Ihnatko gives his take on Pop!_OS on episode 663 of MacBreak Weekly. (The clip starts around 1:33:10.)


The Darter Pro Surprise

Destination Linux surprises Zeb with a Darter Pro to review. See his first impressions around 1:09:49.


LearnLinux.tv Unboxes and Reviews the Oryx Pro

Jay reviews his experience with the Oryx Pro on LearnLinux.tv.

Watch his unboxing video, and see the full review here.


Lawrence Systems: The Oryx Pro Review

Tom Lawrence of Lawrence Systems provides his own review of the Oryx Pro.


Differences between Pop!_OS and Ubuntu

The Linux Experiment reviews what sets Pop!_OS and Ubuntu apart from one another.


What it’s Like to use Pop!_OS

Linux Scoop shows a brief overview of what it looks like to use Pop!_OS

System76 News: A May With Zing!

Friday 31st of May 2019 08:07:33 PM

The force was with us in May, as we have a ton of fun updates for you! See what’s new regarding hardware, manufacturing, and accessories, and what’s in the works for Pop!_OS and our open firmware.

HARDWARE

In case you missed it, we recently announced that a new Gazelle laptop will be released soon! Gazelle has both 15” and 17” options and comes loaded with a 9th Gen Intel Core i7 CPU, an NVIDIA 16-series GPU, and up to 64GB RAM. Gazelle’s trifecta of CPU, GPU, and Memory gives content creators, gamers, animators, and designers a machine that can keep up with their graphics-heavy workloads. Head over to the product page to be notified when it releases this summer!

MANUFACTURING

“Brace” yourself for these manufacturing tweaks to Thelio Major:

A new power supply brace, GPU brace, and PCI bracket improve stability within Thelio Major’s interior, especially during shipping. Similarly, modifications were made to the CPU heat sink duct to better hold the heat sink in place while in transit.

ACCESSORIES

UK keyboard layouts are currently available on the Oryx Pro and Darter Pro! Though this keyboard layout is only available for a limited time, this option could stick around depending on popularity.

POP!_OS

Features

The ability to disable mouse acceleration has been added to GNOME Settings in Pop!_OS 19.04. Disabling mouse acceleration allows for the increased precision of mouse movements desired by PC gamers, artists, and designers for their unique use cases that depend on mouse accuracy. This patch was previously submitted upstream to GNOME by Mathew Bouma, but was not accepted. However, we’ve decided to include the patch as an option in Settings rather than through the GNOME Tweak Tool utility, as this feature has been highly requested among Pop!_OS users.

Graphics

VAAPI / VDPAU hardware decoding is now enabled by default for open source graphics drivers and the proprietary NVIDIA driver. This enables hardware decoding of supported video codecs in supported video players such as MPV. This can drastically reduce power consumption and CPU workload by offloading the expensive decoding tasks to dedicated hardware included alongside the graphics chip that was built specifically for those video decoding algorithms. This does not apply to Chromium or Firefox, however, as both of these browsers lack support for hardware decoding on Linux entirely.


System76-Power

Support for handling multiple hwmon interfaces for multiple I/O boards and CPUs was added to system76-power to combat excessive fan usage. This should reduce the amount of noise generated by fans on desktops that are affected by this criteria. A much quieter fan curve is also in the works and will arrive soon.


Security

Patches have already been released for Intel’s latest security vulnerabilities. To apply these patches, users are advised to install all available updates and reboot. These patches address the following security vulnerabilities:

- CVE-2018-12126 Microarchitectural Store Buffer Data Sampling (MSBDS)

- CVE-2018-12130 Microarchitectural Fill Buffer Data Sampling (MFBDS)

- CVE-2018-12127 Microarchitectural Load Port Data Sampling (MLPDS)

- CVE-2019-11091 Microarchitectural Data Sampling Uncacheable Memory (MDSUM)


Fixes

We’ve updated the youtube-dl package to a newer version. This package, maintained by Debian and Canonical, is used for downloading videos from YouTube. Changes made by Google to the YouTube API had recently broken this package in the Ubuntu repositories, hence the update.

Spacing issues between labels and icons in the Files side panel have been fixed as well. If you see any other issues with the GTK theme in 19.04, be sure to submit an issue report!

Pop Upgrade Progress

The new upgrade process for Pop!_OS is almost done! Though not yet implemented, the following changes have been made to Pop!_OS upgrading in May.

  • The option for keeping or disabling third party repositories was added to the upgrade daemon. Currently, third party repositories are disabled by default during an upgrade, which can interrupt a user’s workflow for certain applications.
  • Support for the Refresh OS option has also been added to GNOME Settings. Selecting this option will prepare the system to boot into the recovery partition on the next boot, and to ask to perform a refresh install. This allows you to skip setup for the language and keyboard settings, and to go straight to the refresh view.


Pop Upgrade: The Recovery Shell

The recovery shell was implemented this month, which opens a terminal to allow the user to manually recover from an error that prevents an upgrade from completing. Once the terminal is closed, the upgrade will be re-attempted.


Pop!_Volunteers This Week

  • @derpOmattic has submitted a handful of DEP11 appstream metadata: GNOME Authenticator, Lollypop, & PulseEffects. The addition of these apps to the Pop!_Shop was made possible through the help of @stratact and his DEP11 convertor. MR
  • @derpOmattic added the appstream metadata for Alacritty and TimeShift. MR
  • @adminxvii implemented checksum verification in Popsicle. MR


FIRMWARE

In open firmware news, the camera toggle hotkey is now functional. The last remaining hardware issues with running open firmware on our laptops lie with Thunderbolt. On Whiskey Lake chipsets, the Thunderbolt controller is often not in a functional state after suspending/resuming the system. On Kaby Lake chipsets, the Thunderbolt controller is never visible.

A new BIOS setup menu is also being designed for our open firmware so that the look and feel is consistent with the beautiful aesthetic you can expect from a System76 product. This will be implemented once the new firmware is ready for release.


EVENTS

LFNW Recap

System76 was at LinuxFest Northwest! We hope you all had a chance to stop by and meet our support team. They had a blast speaking with all of you! In case you missed out on some fun things like the Jupiter Broadcasting barbecue or Emma’s talk on the importance of being HAPPY in tech support, you can see our recap of the event on our blog.


19.04 Pop!_Party Recap

A long time ago (May 4th), in a factory far, far away (Denver), we hosted a fun release party for Pop!_OS 19.04. Partygoers enjoyed Star Wars-themed food, such as Hanburgers and Jabba the Hutt dogs, trivia, a tour of the factory, and brought some swag home, too!


PRESS

Pop!_OS Makes Classic Gnome Simpler

Jack M. Germain provides an in-depth review of Pop!_OS in this LinuxInsider article.

Opensource.com: System76’s Secret Sauce

Don Watkins of Opensource.com explores the “secret sauce” of System76 and the flavor that it adds to our culture and community.

Level1Tech Reviews Thelio

Wendell from Level1Tech has been busy this month on the Linux playground, testing out both Pop!_OS and Thelio.

LinuxFest Northwest Summary

Friday 3rd of May 2019 07:28:47 PM

Here’s a summary of our time at LFNW, and we hope to see you there next year!

System76 was in Bellingham over the weekend for LinuxFest Northwest! People had a wonderful time meeting our support staff and got to put a friendly face to the name of the lovely folks who’ve helped them out in the past.

Our booth was fully loaded this year! Attendees who stopped by got to experience the new Oryx Pro and Darter Pro laptops. People were particularly fond of the Darter Pro’s trackpad and the springiness of the keyboard on both machines.

Thelio was also in attendance, with both guts and glory on display. The desktop was a popular topic at the booth, and the wood veneer was quite the crowd-pleaser!

While we were there, we flashed Pop!_OS onto multiple USB drives at a time using Popsicle to hand out to all of our guests. It was a spectacle of lights, and attendees were glad to be able to take Pop!_OS home to try it out for themselves!

For our fans, we raffled off two laptop bags and had an hourly drawing to pick a lucky winner of our Pop! kits.

We also had tons of stickers laid out and a swath of System76 t-shirts in black, brown, blue, and pink! Can you guess which shirt is Emma’s favorite? (Hint: It’s the pink one.) (That wasn’t a hint. But also, you didn’t need a hint.)

On Saturday, we were joined by Jupiter Broadcasting for a delicious parking lot barbecue! Conference-goers flocked to enjoy burgers, beverages, and boisterous fun in the Bellingham sun. Everyone received a bottle opener that also served as a reminder to be their nerdy selves.

The event drew quite the crowd!

Martin Wimpress, Wes Payne, Alan Pope also came to say hello!

When we got back to the hotel on Saturday, we noticed something interesting. The hotel we were staying at was using Ubuntu as well!

On Sunday, Emma gave a talk at the conference about taking a HAPPY approach to tech support, which is available to watch on YouTube!.

While it’s helpful for people to speak to an actual person rather than a robot, it’s not as helpful if the person acts like one. The HAPPY approach is an acronym that stresses the importance of being human, active, patient, persistent, and you when assisting someone. System76 has always been known for helpful support, and that’s thanks to keeping our support team HAPPY!

More in Tux Machines

Events: LibreOffice Conference 2020, MariaDB's Thomas Boyd and Upcoming Linux Foundation’s Open Source Summit

  • LibreOffice Conference 2020 Proposals

    The Document Foundation has received two different proposals for the organization of LibOCon 2020 from the Turkish and German communities. When this has happened in the past, in 2012 (Berlin vs Zaragoza) and 2013 (Milan vs Montreal), TDF Members have been asked to decide by casting their vote. This document provides an outline of the two proposals, which are attached in their original format.

  • Thomas Boyd Discusses Which Open Source Database is the Best Fit for the Business

    The world's largest and most innovative businesses are turning to enterprise open source databases for mission-critical applications, with the most popular open source relational databases being MariaDB, MySQL, and Postgres. However, while all three of these databases are open source, mature, and available in enterprise editions, there are significant differences between them — both in terms of application development as well as database administration and operations. DBTA recently held a webinar featuring Thomas Boyd, director of technical marketing, MariaDB Corporation, who discussed the differences between MariaDB, MySQL, and Postgres. [...] EnterpriseDB is heap only while MySQL and MariaDB offer InnoDB, Columnar, Aria, MyRocks, and more.

  • Open Source Summit welcomes Platform9 experts

    Cloud-native experts share tips and practical learnings for Kubernetes in the enterprise, Kubernetes on bare metal or with stateful MySQL databases, and optimizing the cost and performance of Serverless applications.

  • Transform Your Career: Attend Open Source Summit North America this August in San Diego

    For the last decade, The Linux Foundation’s Open Source Summit has proven to be invaluable for attendees.  A 2018 participant recently wrote an article on OpenSource.com stating “Last August, I arrived at the Vancouver Convention Centre to give a lightning talk and speak on a panel at Open Source Summit North America 2018. It’s no exaggeration to say that this conference—and applying to speak at it—transformed my career.” We encourage you to read the article and discover why attending Open Source Summit can be a game changer for you as well.

OSS Leftovers

  • Intervalometerator: Open Source Code for a Remote Timelapse DSLR

    Want to set up a remote DSLR for shooting a time-lapse? The Intervalometerator (AKA ‘intvlm8r’) is an open-source intervalometer that can help you do so at minimal hardware cost (as long as you’re comfortable tinkering with hardware and software). Created by Sydney-based coder Greig Sheridan and his photographer partner Rocky over the course of a year, the Intervalometerator is designed to be both cheap and easy to build with familiar tools and using Raspberry Pi and Arduino microcontrollers. “My partner and I have been working for over twelve months now on an intervalometer in order to shoot a DSLR-based time-lapse of the construction of our friends’ home in NZ,” Sheridan tells PetaPixel. “It was at the time a seemingly clever idea for a house-warming present, but it grew like tribbles to consume an incredible amount of effort).

  • Open Source Tools & Framework: Microservices Perspective
  • Open Source flexiWAN SD-WAN Software Beta Ships
  • Agile and open source can complement each other

    Despite the growing popularity of both Agile development and open-source practices, it’s not often that they come up in the same conversation. When these two concepts do intersect, it’s often to highlight the contradicting viewpoints that these two models supposedly represent. While there are core differences, Agile doesn’t have to be the enemy of open source—in fact, I would argue the opposite.

  • SD Times Open-Source Project of the Week: Twilio CLI

    In an effort to help its developers be more productive, Twilio has announced the beta version of Twilio CLI. It is an open-source command line interface that enables developers to access Twilio through their command prompt. “It’s hard to beat the flexibility and power that a CLI provides at development time. Until now, there was no CLI designed for typical communications requirements,” Ashley Roach, the product manager for developer interfaces at Twilio, wrote in a post.

  • Using open source in your enterprise? What to look out for

    According to Statista, the open source market was valued at $11.4 billion in 2017 and is estimated to grow to $32.95 billion by 2022, showing it has no intention of slowing down anytime soon. Founded on the belief that collaboration and cooperation build better software, open source sounds closer to a utopian dream than to the cold digital world of programming. Research showed that open source code takes over proprietary one in applications at 57%. This has numerous benefits, such as speeding up the software development process or creating more effective and innovative software. For example, open source frontend development frameworks, such as Angular, are often found in custom web apps, which allows companies to get their products to market at ever-increasing rates. In addition, companies tend to engage open source when at the cusp of technological innovation, especially when it comes to AR, blockchain, IoT, and AI.

  • Open Source Technology: What's It All About?

    To understand how open source works, it is important to appreciate where it all began. The very idea behind its inception isn’t exactly a new one. It’s been adopted by scientists for decades. Let’s imagine a scientist working on a project to develop a cure for an illness. If this scientist only published the results and kept the methods a secret, this would undoubtedly inhibit scientific discovery and further research in this area. On the other hand, teaming up with other researchers and making results and methodologies visible allows for greater and faster innovation. This is the premise from which open source was originally born. Open source refers to software that has an open source code so it can be viewed, modified for a particular need, and importantly, shared (under license). One of the first well known open source initiatives was developed in 1998 by Netscape, which released its Navigator browser as free software and demonstrated the benefits of taking an open source approach. Since then, there have been a number of pivotal moments in open source history that have shaped the technology industry as we know it today. Nowadays, some of the latest technology you use on a daily basis, like your smartphone or laptop, will have been built using open source software. [...] Recent research found that 60 percent of organizations are already using open source software. Many businesses are realizing the benefits that the technology can bring in relation to driving innovation and reducing costs. This in turn is seeing a growing number of organizations integrate open source into their IT operations or even building entire businesses around it. With emerging technologies such as cloud, AI and machine learning only driving this adoption further, open source will continue to play a central and growing role throughout the technology landscape.

  • How to Take Your Open Source Project from Good to Great

    Whether or not you expect anyone to contribute to your project, you should be prepared for the possibility of others wanting to help your cause. And when that happens, your contributing guide will show those helpers exactly how they can get involved. This guide, usually in the form of a CONTRIBUTING.md file, should include information on how one should submit a pull request or open an issue for your project and what kinds of help you’re looking for (bug fixes, design direction, feature requests, etc.).

  • ForgeRock Delivers Open Source IoT Edge Controller for Device Identity

    According to a recent announcement, ForgeRock, a platform provider of digital identity management solutions, has launched its IoT Edge Controller, which is designed to provide consumer and industrial manufacturers the ability to deliver trusted identity at the device level.

  • Browser Settings Too Complex? Let Firefox Handle That for You

    Firefox SVP David Camp doesn't want internet users wasting time 'understanding how the internet is watching you.'

  • Exclusive: Automattic CEO Matt Mullenweg on what’s next for Tumblr

    It’s been a long and winding road for Tumblr, the blogging site that launched a thousand writing careers. It sold to Yahoo for $1.1 billion in 2013, then withered as Yahoo sold itself to AOL, AOL sold itself to Verizon, and Verizon realized it was a phone company after all. Through all that, the site’s fierce community hung on: it’s still Taylor Swift’s go-to social media platform, and fandoms of all kinds have homes there. Verizon sold Tumblr for a reported $3 million this week, a far cry from the billion-dollar valuation it once had. But to Verizon’s credit, it chose to sell Tumblr to Automattic, the company behind WordPress, the publishing platform that runs some 34 percent of the world’s websites. Automattic CEO Matt Mullenweg thinks the future of Tumblr is bright. He wants the platform to bring back the best of old-school blogging, reinvented for mobile and connected to Tumblr’s still-vibrant community, and he’s retaining all 200 Tumblr employees to build that future. It’s the most exciting vision for Tumblr in years. Matt joined Verge reporter Julia Alexander and me on a special Vergecast interview episode to chat about the deal, how it came together, what Automattic’s plans for Tumblr look like, and whether Tumblr might become an open-source project, like WordPress itself. (“That would be pretty cool,” said Matt.) Oh, and that porn ban.

Apache: Self Assessment and Security

  • The Apache® Software Foundation Announces Annual Report for 2019 Fiscal Year

    The Apache® Software Foundation (ASF), the all-volunteer developers, stewards, and incubators of more than 350 Open Source projects and initiatives, announced today the availability of the annual report for its 2019 fiscal year, which ended 30 April 2019.

  • Open Source at the ASF: A Year in Numbers

    332 active projects, 71 million lines of code changed, 7,000+ committers… The Apache Software Foundation has published its annual report for fiscal 2019. The hub of a sprawling, influential open source community, the ASF remains in rude good health, despite challenges this year including the need for “an outsized amount of effort” dealing with trademark infringements, and “some in the tech industry trying to exploit the goodwill earned by the larger Open Source community.” [...] The ASF names 10 “platinum” sponsors: AWS, Cloudera, Comcast, Facebook, Google, LeaseWeb, Microsoft, the Pineapple Fund, Tencent Cloud, and Verizon Media

  • Apache Software Foundation Is Worth $20 Billion

    Yes, Apache is worth $20 billion by its own valuation of the software it offers for free. But what price can you realistically put on open source code? If you only know the name Apache in connection with the web server then you are missing out on some interesting software. The Apache Software Foundation ASF, grew out of the Apache HTTP Server project in 1999 with the aim of furthering open source software. It provides a licence, the Apache licence, a decentralized governance and requires projects to be licensed to the ASF so that it can protect the intellectual property rights.

  • Apache Security Advisories Red Flag Wrong Versions in Patching Gaffe

    Researchers have pinpointed errors in two dozen Apache Struts security advisories, which warn users of vulnerabilities in the popular open-source web app development framework. They say that the security advisories listed incorrect versions impacted by the vulnerabilities. The concern from this research is that security administrators in companies using the actual impacted versions would incorrectly think that their versions weren’t affected – and would thus refrain from applying patches, said researchers with Synopsys who made the discovery, Thursday. “The real question here from this research is whether there remain unpatched versions of the newly disclosed versions in production scenarios,” Tim Mackey, principal security strategist for the Cybersecurity Research Center at Synopsys, told Threatpost. “In all cases, the Struts community had already issued patches for the vulnerabilities so the patches exist, it’s just a question of applying them.”

Google and Android Code

  • Google releases source code for I/O 2019 app with Android Q gesture nav, dark theme

    The Google I/O companion app for Android often takes advantage of the latest design stylings and OS features. It demoed Android Q’s gesture navigation and dark theme this year, with the company today releasing the I/O 2019 source code.

  • Introducing Coil, an open-source Android image loading library backed by Kotlin Coroutines

    Yesterday, Colin White, a Senior Android Engineer at Instacart, introduced Coroutine Image Loader (Coil). It is a fast, lightweight, and modern image loading library for Android backed by Kotlin.

  • Google open-sources Live Transcribe’s speech engine

    Google today open-sourced the speech engine that powers its Android speech recognition transcription tool Live Transcribe. The company hopes doing so will let any developer deliver captions for long-form conversations. The source code is available now on GitHub. Google released Live Transcribe in February. The tool uses machine learning algorithms to turn audio into real-time captions. Unlike Android’s upcoming Live Caption feature, Live Transcribe is a full-screen experience, uses your smartphone’s microphone (or an external microphone), and relies on the Google Cloud Speech API. Live Transcribe can caption real-time spoken words in over 70 languages and dialects. You can also type back into it — Live Transcribe is really a communication tool. The other main difference: Live Transcribe is available on 1.8 billion Android devices. (When Live Caption arrives later this year, it will only work on select Android Q devices.)