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September 2016

ownCloud Desktop Client 2.2.4 Released with Updated Dolphin Plugin, Bug Fixes

Filed under
Software

ownCloud is still alive and kicking, and they've recently released a new maintenance update of the ownCloud Desktop Client, version 2.2.4, bringing some much-needed improvements and patching various annoying issues.

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Early Benchmarks Of The Linux 4.9 DRM-Next Radeon/AMDGPU Drivers

Filed under
Graphics/Benchmarks

While Linux 4.9 will not officially open for development until next week, the DRM-Next code is ready to roll with all major feature work having been committed by the different open-source Direct Rendering Manager drivers. In this article is some preliminary testing of this DRM-Next code as of 29 September when testing various AMD GPUs with the Radeon and AMDGPU DRM drivers.

Linux 4.9 does bring compile-time-offered experimental support for the AMD Southern Islands GCN 1.0 hardware on AMDGPU, but that isn't the focus of this article. A follow-up comparison is being done with GCN 1.0/1.1 experimental support enabled to see the Radeon vs. AMDGPU performance difference on that hardware. For today's testing was a Radeon R7 370 to look at the Radeon DRM performance and for AMDGPU testing was the Radeon R9 285, R9 Fury, and RX 480. Benchmarks were done from the Linux 4.8 Git and Linux DRM-Next kernels as of 29 September.

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How to Effectively and Efficiently Edit Configuration Files in Linux

Filed under
Linux
HowTos

Every Linux administrator has to eventually (and manually) edit a configuration file. Whether you are setting up a web server, configuring a service to connect to a database, tweaking a bash script, or troubleshooting a network connection, you cannot avoid a dive deep into the heart of one or more configuration files. To some, the prospect of manually editing configuration files is akin to a nightmare. Wading through what seems like countless lines of options and comments can put you on the fast track for hair and sanity loss.

Which, of course, isn’t true. In fact, most Linux administrators enjoy a good debugging or configuration challenge. Sifting through the minutiae of how a server or software functions is a great way to pass time. But this process doesn’t have to be an exercise in ineffective inefficiency. In fact, tools are available to you that go a very long way to make the editing of config files much, much easier. I’m going to introduce you to a few such tools, to ease some of the burden of your Linux admin duties. I’ll first discuss the command-line tools that are invaluable to the task of making configuration more efficient.

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Why Good Linux Sysadmins Use Markdown

Filed under
Linux

The Markdown markup language is perfect for writing system administrator documentation: it is lightweight, versatile, and easy to learn, so you spend your time writing instead of fighting with formatting.

The life of a Linux system administrator is complex and varied, and you know that documenting your work is a big time-saver. A documentation web server shared by you and your colleagues is a wonderful productivity tool. Most of us know simple HTML, and can whack up a web page as easily as writing plain text. But using Markdown is better.

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Purism’s next product could be a smartphone that runs Linux/free software

Filed under
Linux
OSS

Purism is a company that’s been developing laptops and tablets that run Linux-based, free and open source software for a few years.

Now Purism is considering building a smartphone and the company is soliciting feedback from potential customers.

The idea would be to release a Librem Phone that runs GNU/Linux rather than Android, and which offers security and privacy features to help set it apart from most other phones on the market.

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Cinnamon 3.2 in Linux Mint 18.1 Supports Vertical Panels, Better Accelerometers

Filed under
Linux

After informing the community a few days ago about the Mintbox Mini Pro PC and the upcoming improvements and new features shipping with the XApps software projects in Linux Mint 18.1, Clement Lefebvre just published the monthly Linux Mint newsletter.

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Blender 2.78 Open-Source 3D Graphics Software Released with Spherical Stereo VR

Filed under
Software

Today, September 30, 2016, the Blender Foundation is proud to release Blender 2.78, the latest stable and most advanced version of the popular, open-source, free, and cross-platform Blender 3D modelling software.

Blender 2.78 comes six months after the release of Blender 2.77, and it's a major update that adds numerous new features and improvements, among which we can mention rendering of spherical stereo images for VR (Virtual Reality), viewport rendering improvements, as well as brand new freehand curves drawing over surfaces.

Moreover, the Grease Pencil received awesome improvements and it now doubles as both an animation and drawing tool, powerful new options have been added for B-Bones, it's now possible to import and export basic operators in the Alembic support, and the Cloth Physics feature received new Simulation Speed option and Dynamic Base Mesh support.

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OSS Leftovers

Filed under
OSS
  • Tools for writing the next best seller

    I am using bibisco in conjunction with LibreOffice on my Ubuntu 16.04 Asus laptop that I converted over from Windows 7 to develop my characters, scenes, and plot. I tried Manuskript, but find that I like bibisco better, although the results are similar. For one, it gives helpful prompts.

  • GNOME Calendar App to Feature a New Sidebar, Week View & Attendees in GNOME 3.24

    GNOME developer Georges Stavracas wrote an in-depth blog post the other day to inform the GNOME, Linux, and Open Source communities about the upcoming improvements and new features coming to the GNOME Calendar apps.

    Now that some of us are already enjoying the recently released GNOME 3.22 desktop environment, the GNOME developers are hard at work to improve the GNOME apps and core components by either adding new exciting features and technologies or improving existing ones.

  • PHP version 5.6.27RC1 and 7.0.12RC1
  • Kubernetes Arrives in New Flavors

    Kubernetes has taken center stage in recent days, and, as we’ve been noting in recent posts, the open source container cluster manager is heading in new directions. Google has just announced the release of Kubernetes 1.4, which makes the tool much easier to install.

    Meanwhile, Canonical has now launched its own distribution of Kubernetes, with enterprise support, across a range of public clouds and private infrastructure. It's Kubernetes at the core, but features a number of extra bells and whistles.

  • 2016 Women in Open Source Award Winners

    We hope you enjoy and are inspired by this short video celebrating Preeti Murthy and Jessica McKellar, the winners of this year’s Red Hat Women in Open Source Awards.

  • Tech, talent and tools: The secret to monetizing open-source

    “In California during the gold rush, you didn’t make money digging for gold; you made money selling shovels,” said Mehta. A fitting metaphor for the idea that investing in talent and tools, especially tools, is how to turn a profit. The actual data, databases, algorithms and so on would be open source. Money would come from the tools to use that technology to benefit specific areas, such as automation of healthcare.

    And healthcare is a good place to start. “Big Data is all about making life cheaper, better. … If we forget about how to solve problems for humans, we’ve lost. We want to be known for enriching life,” said Mehta.

  • Changing the way we design for the web

    On the one hand, open source should mean lower cost of entry for people from poorer communities (like me, growing up). But on the other, I feel it is hard to contribute when under- or unemployed. I had a grant to work on the Web Animations API documentation, but I can't do as much as I'd like with other animation features (motion paths, advanced timing functions) because I need to spend a lot of time working on my own business, getting paid.

    Essentially this leads to an awkward model where the only contributors are employed programmers—and when it comes to open source animation or design APIs, platforms, etc, this lack of user input really starts to show. Or, the only products with thriving open source development teams are those that have financially lucrative futures, turning the open source software (OSS) model into a capitalist one.

  • Leaders in Data Management and Open Source Innovation to Gather for Postgres Vision 2016
  • CloudReady by neverware

    I thought I would put together a quick “installation” review of a product called CloudReady by neverware. What is CloudReady? CloudReady is basically a project to bring Chromium OS to those who would like to convert traditional laptops into Chromebook-like devices. I stumbled on them several months ago and finally decided to see how hard it was to install Chromium OS and how functional it actually was as a Chromebook-like device. I have a few low end (netbook-like) devices and I have been trying to figure out how I could make them functional for my boys, I thought this might be the solution.

  • Mozilla tells Firefox OS devs to fork off if they want to chase open web apps vision

    The Mozilla Foundation's Firefox development team has decided enough is enough and will stop supporting Windows XP and Vista in March 2017 and also bin Firefox OS.

    The OS first. In this post Mozillans Ari Jaaksi and David Bryant, respectively the head of connected devices and veep for platform engineering, write that “By the end of 2015 Mozilla leadership had come to the conclusion that our then Firefox OS initiative of shipping phones with commercial partners would not bring Mozilla the returns we sought.”

    That decision means that “as of the end of July 2016 have stopped all commercial development on Firefox OS.”

  • Cloudera Delivers Release Built on Apache Spark 2.0, and Advances Kudu

    Cloudera, focused on Apache Hadoop and other open source technologies,has announced its release built on the Apache Spark 2.0 (Beta), with enhancements to the API experience, performance improvements, and enhanced machine learning capabilities.

    The company is also working with the community to continue developing Apache Kudu 1.0, recently released by the Apache Software Foundation, which we covered here. Kudu is an open source columnar storage engine built for the Apache Hadoop ecosystem designed to enable flexible, high-performance analytic pipelines. Taken together, Cloudera's new tools are giving it more diverse kinds of presence on the Big Data scene.

    Cloudera claims it was the first Hadoop big data analytics vendor to deliver a commercially supported version of Spark, and has participated actively in the open source community to enhance Spark for the enterprise through its One Platform Initiative. "With Spark 2.0, organizations are better able to take advantage of streaming data, develop richer machine learning models, and deploy them in real time, enabling more workloads to go into production," the company reports.

  • Cloudera Delivers Enterprise-Grade Real-Time Streaming and Machine Learning with Apache Spark 2.0 and Drives Community Innovation with Apache Kudu 1.0
  • INSIDE Secure and Marvell Deliver Open Source Open Data Plane Security VPN Solution [Ed: “open source Open Data Plane (ODP) security API” sounds like nonsensical openwashing]

    INSIDE Secure (Paris:INSD), at the heart of security solutions for mobile and connected devices and network equipment, today announced the Marvell-INSIDE Secure solution, a collaboration that provides open source Open Data Plane (ODP) security API support on Marvell’s ARMADA® 8K and ARMADA 7K System-on-Chip (SoC) families with embedded INSIDE Secure Security Protocol Accelerator IP technology. The Marvell-INSIDE Secure solution provides customers with an easy and efficient way to secure their high-speed networking applications with access to all of the ARM ecosystem’s software support.

  • GE, Bosch Combine Resources to Bolster IoT
  • OpenBSD 6.0 Limited Edition CD set (signed by developers)

    Five OpenBSD 6.0 CD-ROM copies were signed by 40 developers during the g2k16 Hackathon in Cambridge, UK.

    Those copies are being auctioned sequentially on ebay.

    All proceeds will be donated to the OpenBSD Foundation to support and further the development of free software based on the OpenBSD operating system.

  • Friday Working together for Free Software Directory IRC meetup: September 30th
  • Machine Learning with Python

    I first heard the term “machine learning” a few years ago, and to be honest, I basically ignored it that time. I knew that it was a powerful technique, and I knew that it was in vogue, but I didn’t know what it really was— what problems it was designed to solve, how it solved them and how it related to the other sorts of issues I was working on in my professional (consulting) life and in my graduate-school research.

    But in the past few years, machine learning has become a topic that most will avoid at their professional peril. Despite the scary-sounding name, the ideas behind machine learning aren’t that difficult to understand. Moreover, a great deal of open-source software makes it possible for anyone to use machine learning in their own work or research. I don’t think it’s an overstatement to say that machine learning already is having a huge impact on the computer industry and on our day-to-day lives.

Linux Graphics

Filed under
Graphics/Benchmarks
  • Libinput X.Org Driver Updated For X.Org Server 1.19

    Peter Hutterer has announced the release of a new version of xf86-input-libinput, the X.Org DDX driver that makes use of libinput for input handling on the X.Org Server.

  • xf86-input-libinput 0.20.0

    Most important fix is the use of input_lock() instead of the old SIGIO stuff to handle the input thread in server 1.19.

  • Mesa 13.0 Planning For Release At End Of October, Might Include RADV Vulkan

    Following the mailing list talk over the past two days about doing the next Mesa release, plans are being discussed for releasing at the end of October and it might have just got a whole lot more exciting.

    Emil Velikov, Collabora developer and Mesa release manager for the past several release series, has commented on that previously discussed mailing list thread. He mentioned he was secretly waiting in hopes of seeing the RADV Radeon Vulkan driver merged for this next release! He said he'd even be willing to see it merged even if it's "not perfect/feature complete."

More in Tux Machines

Ubuntu 20.04 LTS (Focal Fossa) Daily Build ISOs Are Now Available to Download

Unveiled last week as the "Focal Fossa" release, the Ubuntu 20.04 LTS operating system will hit the streets next year on April 23rd, as the 8th long-term support version of Ubuntu Linux, one of the most popular Linux-based operating systems in the world. While its development cycle will kick off officially later this week on October 24th, with the toolchain upload, the first daily build ISO images are now already available to download for those who want to test it and report bugs, as well as anyone else who just wants an early taste of Ubuntu 20.04 LTS. Read more

Intel adds 10nm Ice Lake desktop and server CPUs to Linux kernel

The fact that Intel’s Kan Liang has signed off on the addition of Ice Lake desktop and server parts to the Linux kernel does lend a little more credence to Intel’s assertion last week that, despite rumours to the contrary, it would definitely be shipping 10nm desktop processors. Now it looks like those 10nm CPUs might actually come from the Ice Lake family after all. With Intel Comet Lake, its 10-core big-boy, and Hyper-Threading throughout the range, popping up either late this year or early next we had assumed Intel wasn’t going to follow up the mobile release of Ice Lake with any desktop parts. Read more

Programming: Picolibc, NGT, Tryton, OCaml, GNOME and KDE

  • Picolibc Updates (October 2019)

    Tiny stdio in picolibc uses a global variable, __iob, to hold pointers to FILE structs for stdin, stdout, and stderr. For this to point at actual usable functions, applications normally need to create and initialize this themselves. If all you want to do is make sure the tool chain can compile and link a simple program (as is often required for build configuration tools like autotools), then having a simple 'hello world' program actually build successfully can be really useful. I added the 'dummyiob.c' module to picolibc which has an iob variable initialized with suitable functions. If your application doesn't define it's own iob, you'll get this one instead.

  • NGT: A library for high-speed approximate nearest neighbor search

    Different search methods are used for different data types. For example, full-text search is for text data, content-based image retrieval is for images, and relational databases are for data relationships. Deep learning models can easily generate vectors from various kinds of data so that the vector space has embedded relationships among source data. This means that if two source data are similar, the two vectors from the data will be located near each other in the vector space. Therefore, all you have to do is search the vectors instead of the source data. Moreover, the vectors not only represent the text and image characteristics of the source data, but they also represent products, human beings, organizations, and so forth. Therefore, you can search for similar documents and images as well as products with similar attributes, human beings with similar skills, clothing with similar features, and so on. For example, Yahoo! Japan provides a similarity-based fashion-item search using NGT.

  • Tryton Spanish Days 2019: In Alicante on the 27th & 28th of November

    The Tryton Foundation is happy to announce the venue and date of the next Tryton Spanish Days.

  • 6 Excellent Free Books to Learn OCaml

    Caml is a general-purpose, powerful, high-level programming language with a large emphasis on speed and efficiency. A dialect of the ML programming language, it supports functional, imperative, and object-oriented programming styles. Caml has been developed and distributed by INRIA, a French research institute, since 1985. The OCaml system is the main implementation of the Caml language. It has a very strong type-checking system, offers a powerful module system, automatic memory management, first-class functions, and adds a full-fledged object-oriented layer. OCaml includes a native-code compiler supporting numerous architectures, for high performance; a bytecode compiler, for increased portability; and an interactive loop, for experimentation and rapid development. OCaml’s integrated object system allows object-oriented programming without sacrificing the benefits of functional programming, parametric polymorphism, and type inference. The language is mature, producing efficient code and comes with a large set of general purpose as well as domain-specific libraries. OCaml is often used for teaching programming, and by large corporations. OCaml benefits from a whole range of new tools and libraries, including OPAM (package manager), optimizing compilers, and development tools such as TypeRex and Merlin. OCaml was written in 1996 by Xavier Leroy, Jérôme Vouillon, Damien Doligez, and Didier Rémy at INRIA in France.

  • Build win32/win64 nightlies using Gitlab CI

    A week ago after getting Dia nightlies published on GNOME’s new Flatpak nightlies infrastructure I was discussing with Zander Brown, the new maintainer of Dia, of the possibility to publish Windows nightlies through Gitlab the same way we do with Flatpak bundles. A few minutes later I was already trying to cargo-cult what Gedit had to build Windows bundles. It took me a bit of time to figure out how things work, especially that I wanted to make it easier for you to set up a win32/win64 build for your project without much work and as we already use a CI template for Flatpak builds, I ended up doing something pretty similar, but a bit more complex under the hood.

  • Additions and Corrections

    FreeBSD official ports has KDE Frameworks 5.63, Plasma 5.17 and Applications 19.08.2 so it’s right up-to-date with the main KDE releases and it makes a great development platform.

Graphics: Mesa 19.1.8, dGPU and Intel

  • Mesa 19.1.8
    Mesa 19.1.8 is now available.
    
    NOTE: It is anticipated that 19.1.8 will be the final release in the
    19.1 series. Users of 19.1 are encouraged to migrate to the 19.2 series
    in order to obtain future fixes.
    
    Apologies for the big delay in this release; there were several regressions that we
    were investigating, which prevented the pre-release to be on time.
    
    Subject: [ANNOUNCE] mesa 19.1.8
    To: mesa-announce at lists.freedesktop.org
    Cc: mesa-dev at lists.freedesktop.org
    
    Adam Jackson (1):
          docs: Update bug report URLs for the gitlab migration
    
    Alan Coopersmith (5):
          c99_compat.h: Don't try to use 'restrict' in C++ code
          util: Make Solaris implemention of p_atomic_add work with gcc
          util: Workaround lack of flock on Solaris
          meson: recognize "sunos" as the system name for Solaris
          intel/common: include unistd.h for ioctl() prototype on Solaris
    
    Andreas Gottschling (1):
          drisw: Fix shared memory leak on drawable resize
    
    Andres Gomez (3):
          docs: Add the maximum implemented Vulkan API version in 19.1 rel notes
          docs/features: Update VK_KHR_display_swapchain status
          egl: Remove the 565 pbuffer-only EGL config under X11.
    
    Andrii Simiklit (1):
          glsl: disallow incompatible matrices multiplication
    
    Arcady Goldmints-Orlov (1):
          anv: fix descriptor limits on gen8
    
    Bas Nieuwenhuizen (2):
          tu: Set up glsl types.
          radv: Add workaround for hang in The Surge 2.
    
    Danylo Piliaiev (1):
          st/nine: Ignore D3DSIO_RET if it is the last instruction in a shader
    
    Dylan Baker (5):
          meson: fix logic for generating .pc files with old glvnd
          meson: Try finding libxvmcw via pkg-config before using find_library
          meson: Link xvmc with libxv
          meson: gallium media state trackers require libdrm with x11
          meson: Only error building gallium video without libdrm when the platform is drm
    
    Eric Engestrom (4):
          gl: drop incorrect pkg-config file for glvnd
          meson: re-add incorrect pkg-config files with GLVND for backward compatibility
          util/anon_file: add missing #include
          util/anon_file: const string param
    
    Erik Faye-Lund (1):
          glsl: correct bitcast-helpers
    
    Greg V (1):
          util: add anon_file.h for all memfd/temp file usage
    
    Haihao Xiang (1):
          i965: support AYUV/XYUV for external import only
    
    Hal Gentz (1):
          gallium/osmesa: Fix the inability to set no context as current.
    
    Jason Ekstrand (2):
          nir/repair_ssa: Replace the unreachable check with the phi builder
          intel/fs: Fix fs_inst::flags_read for ANY/ALL predicates
    
    Juan A. Suarez Romero (12):
          docs: add sha256 checksums for 19.1.7
          cherry-ignore: add explicit 19.2 only nominations
          cherry-ignore: add explicit 19.3 only nominations
          Revert "Revert "intel/fs: Move the scalar-region conversion to the generator.""
          cherry-ignore: Revert "gallium: remove PIPE_CAP_TEXTURE_SHADOW_MAP"
          bin/get-pick-list.sh: sha1 commits can be smaller than 8 chars
          cherry-ignore: nir/opt_large_constants: Handle store writemasks
          cherry-ignore: util: added missing headers in anon-file
          cherry-ignore: radv: Fix condition for skipping the continue CS.
          cherry-ignore: Revert "radv: disable viewport clamping even if FS doesn't write Z"
          Update version to 19.1.8
          docs: add release notes for 19.1.8
    
    Ken Mays (1):
          haiku: fix Mesa build
    
    Kenneth Graunke (4):
          iris: Initialize ice->state.prim_mode to an invalid value
          intel: Increase Gen11 compute shader scratch IDs to 64.
          iris: Disable CCS_E for 32-bit floating point textures.
          iris: Fix iris_rebind_buffer() for VBOs with non-zero offsets.
    
    Lionel Landwerlin (5):
          anv: gem-stubs: return a valid fd got anv_gem_userptr()
          intel: use proper label for Comet Lake skus
          mesa: don't forget to clear _Layer field on texture unit
          intel: fix subslice computation from topology data
          intel/isl: Set null surface format to R32_UINT
    
    Marek Olšák (1):
          gallium/vl: don't set PIPE_HANDLE_USAGE_EXPLICIT_FLUSH
    
    Matt Turner (1):
          util: Drop preprocessor guards for glibc-2.12
    
    Michel Dänzer (1):
          radeonsi: fix VAAPI segfault due to various bugs
    
    Michel Zou (2):
          scons: add py3 support
          scons: For MinGW use -posix flag.
    
    Paulo Zanoni (1):
          intel/fs: fix SHADER_OPCODE_CLUSTER_BROADCAST for SIMD32
    
    Prodea Alexandru-Liviu (1):
          scons/MSYS2-MinGW-W64: Fix build options defaults
    
    Rhys Perry (2):
          radv: always emit a position export in gs copy shaders
          nir/opt_remove_phis: handle phis with no sources
    
    Samuel Iglesias Gonsálvez (1):
          intel/nir: do not apply the fsin and fcos trig workarounds for consts
    
    Stephen Barber (1):
          nouveau: add idep_nir_headers as dep for libnouveau
    
    Tapani Pälli (3):
          iris: close screen fd on iris_destroy_screen
          egl: check for NULL value like eglGetSyncAttribKHR does
          util: fix os_create_anonymous_file on android
    
    pal1000 (2):
          scons/windows: Support build with LLVM 9.
          scons: Fix MSYS2 Mingw-w64 build.
    
    git tag: mesa-19.1.8
    
  • Mesa 19.1.8 Released To End Out The Series

    More than one month has passed since Mesa 19.1.7 compared to the usual bi-weekly release cadence, but on Monday following the closure of remaining blocker bugs, Mesa 19.1.8 was released that also ends out this release series. Mesa 19.1.8 is the last planned release in the 19.1 Q2 series with users now being encouraged to upgrade at least to the stable Mesa 19.2 while Mesa 19.3 should be out around early December.

  • Linux 5.5 To Restore Power-Savings For Hybrid Laptops When Not Using The dGPU

    On recent kernels when using a laptop with hybrid graphics but not running with the discrete GPU graphics enabled, a regression meant the dGPU never got powered off... Fortunately, for Linux 5.5 -- and potentially to be back-ported after that -- is a change to restore that power-savings. A change enabling NVIDIA HDA controller support inadvertently left dGPUs powered up when not in use, i.e. where the dGPU is not bound to a driver. When the NVIDIA discrete graphics aren't bound to a driver, the power saving path wasn't being hit where the platform power management could disable power to the GPU.

  • Intel Lands More Graphics Code For Linux 5.5 - Jasper, More Intel Xe Multi-GPU Prepping

    Intel's open-source developers kicked off a new week by sending in their latest vetted changes to DRM-Next ahead of next month's Linux 5.5 kernel cycle. They already have sent in a lot of new graphics driver code for Linux 5.5 particularly around Tiger Lake while this week's pull request contains more new hardware enablement. They also anticipate sending in another pull request next week to DRM-Next with any other lingering feature work they are hoping to get into Linux 5.5.

  • Intel's Graphics Compiler For Their NEO Compute Stack Now Supports Jasper Lake

    The team maintaining the LLVM-based Intel Graphics Compiler as part of their "NEO" OpenCL/Compute Stack have rolled out v1.0.2714 that includes initial support for Jasper Lake among other improvements. Just in the past week we've begun seeing Linux graphics driver patches around "Jasper Lake" and that initial kernel-side support coming for Linux 5.5. Jasper Lake is the rumored 10nm successor to Gemini Lake for low-power SoCs but not to be confused with Elkhart Lake that is Tremont+Gen11 also for ultra-low-power environments based upon the limited information thus far.