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December 2019

Openwashing: SalesAgility, Nvidia, Datasets and IBM

Filed under
OSS
  • Scottish tech firm SalesAgility aims to be 'Scottish success story'

    DALE Murray joined SalesAgility, a tech firm specialising in open source Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software, in 2011 as an unpaid intern. He took over as CEO in 2017 and has expanded the firm’s flagship product, SuiteCRM, as well as its international presence.

    [...]

    I AM the second CEO. I took over from the original founder in 2017. I have a passion for open source software and helping businesses. The original CEO thought he could make a difference and improve CRM software.

    When I started there were only four of us so it was a real startup feel. Ten years later the aim remains the same – to transform the CRM market.

    I started as an unpaid intern. I did a software engineering degree. I initially ran a sports club. I wanted to grow my career and I didn’t have being a CEO in my sights but I wanted to work in consultancy which led me to gain experience in a short space of time. We haven’t received any funding and the growth is all self-made.

  • Nvidia debuts Drive AGX Orin and open-sources autonomous car AI models

    Today marked the kickoff of Nvidia’s GPU Technology Conference in Suzhou, China, where CEO Jensen Huang debuted a host of products and services during his keynote address. In addition to Drive AGX Orin, the latest version of the Santa Clara-based company’s software-defined solution for self-driving vehicles and robots, Nvidia announced the open-sourcing of a suite of AI models for autonomous decision-making and visual perception. Even more, it revealed a hardware collaboration with Didi Chuxing, one of the world’s largest transportation technology companies with over 550 million users and tens of millions of drivers.

  • 10 Datasets Open-Sourced By Tech Giants In 2019
  • Going forward, partners like IBM will 'keep the lights on': IBM India General Manager

    With the advent of Redhat and Open source and adopting new technologies around platform based applications would help the responses to the market improve significantly, he said. 

  • IBM Bet Everything on an Acquisition in 2019. Now It Needs to Grow Again.

    For IBM, 2019 was the year Big Blue doubled-down on the cloud.

    In July, the enterprise technology giant completed its $34 billion acquisition of Red Hat, the dominant provider of open-source operating system software and support. The deal is a bet that IBM (ticker: IBM) can sell more of its own software and services to Red Hat’s customers—and that IBM customers are the perfect target to become Red Hat customers.

    The Red Hat deal is just one in a decadeslong series of IBM moves to keep up with shifting technology trends. Keep in mind that IBM over the years built and later unloaded large businesses in desktop computers, laptops, printers, microprocessors, chip manufacturing, and typewriters. (Didn’t you once own an IBM Selectric?) The latest move will help IBM stay relevant in a world in which cloud-based services have come to dominate the information technology landscape.

Mozilla's and LibreOffice's Greetings for the New Year

Filed under
LibO
Moz/FF
  • Mozilla VR Blog: Happy New Year from Hubs!

    As we wrap up 2019, The Hubs team says thank you to the Mozilla Mixed Reality Community for an incredible year! We’ve been looking back and we’re excited about the key milestones that we’ve hit in our mission to make private social VR readily available to the general public. At the core of what we’re doing, our team is exploring the ways that spatial computing and shared environments can improve the ways that we connect and collaborate, and thanks to the feedback and participation of our users and community as a whole, we got to spend a lot of time this year working on new features and experiments.

    Early in the year, we wanted to dive into our hypothesis that social 3D spaces could integrate into our existing platforms and tools that the team was regularly using. We launched the Hubs Discord Bot back in April, which bridged chat between the two platforms and added an optional authentication layer to restrict access to rooms created with the bot to users in a given server. Since launching the Discord bot, we’ve learned more about the behaviors and frameworks that enable healthy community development and management, and we released a series of new features that supported multiple moderators, configurable room permissions, closing rooms, and more.

  • New Year, New Rights: What to know about California’s new privacy law

    The California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) expands the rights of Californians over their data. Starting in 2020, Californians have the right to know what personal information is being collected, access it, see with whom their data is being shared, and opt-out of the sale of that data.

    You might have heard of this new law in the news or in emails from companies making changes in order to comply with CCPA. It’s a step towards greater privacy, but the devil is in the details.

    CCPA is no panacea for the colossal problems caused by data collection, and Mozilla will continue to support stronger consumer protections and build products that respect your privacy.

    We are proud to say that Firefox didn’t have to change much to meet CCPA’s protections. We are in the business of staying out of your business. We tell you how with the Firefox Personal Data Promise, which is a guarantee to take less of your data, keep it safe, and have no secrets about what we do with it. It’s your data, after all.

  • Happy New Year 2020

    It will be a year long celebration. To start it in the right way, four images which can be reused by LibreOffice community members to share their commitment to FOSS and to the best free office suite ever (background images are from Pixabay, and can be used without attribution). By right clicking on the images, it will be possible to download a larger version (2500 pixel wide).

  • What do you resolve to learn in 2020?

    Maybe you'd like to try for a promotion at work. Maybe you're hoping to acquire a new certification. Or maybe you're just hoping to learn something new.

    For me, I really look forward to the new year as an opportunity to learn something new. At least on my spot on the globe, the new year comes at a time with little daylight, and a whole lot of cold days still ahead. Not exactly the spot on the calendar to be spending time outdoors. So rather than wasting away my hours after work just watching Netflix or playing video games, I'm looking forward to putting my indoor time to good use.

    In my case, I'm hoping to spend some quality time studying up on Ansible in anticipation of taking the new RHEL 8-based RHCE exam later this year. I've also recently acquired some great books on open source desktop design software - GIMP, Inkscape, and Blender - that I'd like to learn in greater depth beyond. And, I'm planning to put some time in with the home lab, learning to run and manage some self-hosted alternatives to SaaS solutions, as well as whatever infrastructure they require underneath.

    What are you hoping to learn in 2020?

Kernel: Linux in the 2010s, Some Benchmarks and Experimental GCN 1.0 GPU Support Might Be Dropped From AMDGPU Linux Driver

Filed under
Graphics/Benchmarks
Linux
  • The Linux Kernel Highlights Of The 2010s From Torvalds' Sabbatical To Dealing With Vulnerabilities

    Going along with our other end of year and decade recaps, here is a look back at the Linux kernel highlights for the 2010s.

    The Linux kernel during the 2010s saw a lot of new features and expanded hardware support, fallout from many security vulnerabilities and having to provide various CPU mitigations as well, Microsoft beginning to contribute to the Linux kernel largely in the context of Hyper-V, various performance improvements, debates over the state of 32-bit's future, and much more.

  • Power Management Improvements Could Benefit Intel Server Performance In Linux 5.6

    Some Intel server platforms could see better performance with the Linux 5.6 kernel cycle.

    Intel's Rafael Wysocki who also serves as the Linux kernel's power management subsystem maintainer has been queuing some patches recently in working on ACPI _CST support around the Intel-Idle driver.

  • The AppArmor Performance Impact In 70+ Benchmarks On Linux 5.5 Git

    With bisecting one of the big regressions in Linux 5.5 and finding the culprit to be an AppArmor change while using Hackbench as one of the most affected tests, I was curious to see what other workloads are impacted big by AppArmor on the current Linux 5.5 Git code. Here are 72 tests with the Threadripper 3970X on Linux 5.5 Git when toggling AppArmor.

    These New Year's Eve benchmarks are looking at the performance of Linux 5.5 Git as of two days ago when running out-of-the-box on Ubuntu 19.10 and then booting with apparmor=0 to force AppArmor to be disabled. Thus looking at the overall cost of AppArmor on Linux 5.5 right now as opposed to just the change from the recent regression.

  • The Experimental GCN 1.0 GPU Support Might Be Dropped From AMDGPU Linux Driver

    By default the Linux kernel selects the aging Radeon DRM driver for GCN 1.0 "Southern Islands" and GCN 1.1 "Sea Islands" hardware (as well as all older ATI/AMD GPUs) while it's GCN 1.2 and newer that defaults to the modern AMDGPU kernel driver. But for years there has been experimental GCN 1.0/1.1 support available via kernel module options, but now for the original GCN GPUs that code is at risk of being dropped.

Programming: Groovy, Zephyr RTOS and Python

Filed under
Development
  • Excellent Free Tutorials to Learn Groovy

    Apache Groovy is a powerful, optionally typed and dynamic language, with static-typing and static compilation capabilities, for the Java platform aimed at improving developer productivity thanks to a concise, familiar and easy to learn syntax.

    It integrates seamlessly with any Java program, and immediately delivers to your application powerful features, including scripting capabilities, Domain-Specific Language authoring, runtime and compile-time meta-programming and functional programming.

    It’s both a static and dynamic language with features similar to those of Python, Ruby, Perl, and Smalltalk. It can be used as both a programming language and a scripting language for the Java Platform.

  • Zephyr RTOS 2.x on Fedora: Configure the build environment

    It’s been a while since I’ve had time to play with the Zephyr RTOS project and the project has evolved greatly since so I thought I’d document the process I went through while playing with Zephyr 2.1 on Fedora using the Fedora native cross toolchains rather than the various ones suggested by the Zephyr Project docs.

    I’m going to do a couple of posts in this series to break it up a little. This first one will be getting a generic build environment setup. I’ll go into more detail on the specific devices I’m playing with but the ones I have handy are ARM Cortex-M based so that’s what I’ll be focusing on even though Zephyr RTOS supports numerous architectures.

    As before it’s worth reading the latest Zephyr Getting Started guide. This time around I’m using a AWS aarch64 a1.medium instance running a Fedora 31 cloud instance but I’ve also tested that a DigitalOcean Droplet with 2Gb RAM works with the later ZephyrRTOS releases too.

  • Making Your First GUI: Python3, Tkinter

    Writing a conversion app is a great start for anyone hoping to jump into GUI development!

    I recently completed this small piece of software for a client on CodeMentor.

    This GUI application allows you to input a number of seconds, and convert it into different units. (Minutes, Hours, & Days) The user can switch the units via a dropdown menu in the app.

  • Christmas Ornament

    One could image having an off-line translator to transform the MML text into a sequence of bytes with note number and duration. This would slightly compress the song, but would speed up processing by eliminating the overhead of parsing.

    Additionally, having 96 wave tables could speed up tone production. The tiny bit of time to recompute the sine wave at a given frequency would be eliminated. But. Memory is limited.

Latte bug fix release v0.9.7

Filed under
KDE

Latte Dock v0.9.7 has been released containing important fixes and improvements!

Read more

Also: Kraft Version 0.90

A new decade for Sailfish OS

Filed under
OS
Gadgets

As the year 2020 and a new decade are just around the corner I’d like to thank all our partners, customers, community members, and fellow sailors across the world for being part of the world-changing Jolla Sailfish story for another year. Not only was 2019 a good year but the entire decade has also been a wild ride for us together. Sincere thanks for sailing it with us!

Our dear Sailfish OS, and our company Jolla is steadily approaching an age of 10 years. Most of you know the history. Already from the start we had a bold vision of offering the world a transparent, trusted and privacy-preserving independent alternative for the most personal tech device we use to manage our daily lives – the smartphone. This is the vision we’ve been carrying through all stages of the story, from developing and offering Jolla branded devices in the early days, to the licensing business we’ve been pushing for the past few years.

We are mobile and tech enthusiasts who want to build and develop a mobile operating system we want to use ourselves, and to perfect Sailfish OS for our licensing customers. In parallel we’ve created the Sailfish X program to carry on the Jolla device heritage for all you like-minded people who want to be independent from the big players, who cherish privacy and data integrity, and who simply just enjoy being boldly different!

Read more

Also: Jolla Making Plans For Sailfish OS In 2020

KDE 2019: the year in review

Filed under
KDE

2019 was a massive year for KDE. I’d like tho take the opportunity to highlight some of the biggest improvements and new features that arrived in this year:

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today's leftovers

Filed under
Misc
  • Video: LibreOffice in 2019 – project and community recap

    Check out this short video of activities throughout the year...

  • Debian vs Arch

    Let's go over the major differences between Debian vs Arch.

  • The Fridge: Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter Issue 611

    Welcome to the Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter, Issue 611 for the week of December 22 – 28, 2019. The full version of this issue is available here.

  • Indie building and automation sim 'Factorio' has surpassed two million sales while in Early Access

    Wube Software announced recently that their indie building, mining, crafting and automation game Factorio has now managed to pass two million sales before it's even finished as noted in their recent blog post.

    Factorio is currently in Early Access and it's been in development for over eight years, so they've had a long time to hit that two million sale milestone. Not to detract from it, that's still an amazing number for an indie game that doesn't go on sale—incredible really!

    As a reminder, Factorio is set to launch the big 1.0 on September 25, 2020. Before that though, they still have a lot of work to do and it seems the newer tutorials are being thrown out in favour of them tweaking what they originally had. Why? Apparently they just didn't show newer players the way the game needed to be played.

OSS: Blockchains, Microsoft's Defeat and IBM/Fedora

Filed under
OSS
  • EY Open-Sources Tech It Says Slashes Cost of Private Ethereum Transactions

    In the updated code, EY said it's made additions that allow private transactions at scale by batching up to 20 ZKP transfers in one transaction – a factor it says "significantly" reduces costs. One 20-batch transaction would cost around $0.05, according to the announcement.

    ZPKs enable the sharing of information proofs between parties without revealing the information itself and, thus, removing the need for trust. The latest additions to EY's ZPK tech include batching tools and an enhancement that cuts the size of on-chain Merkle trees – a data structure fundamental to blockchains.

    A key factor of the advance, EY said, is that lowering the costs of transactions in this way makes the public ethereum blockchain more competitive with private blockchain networks.

  • 10 top distributed apps (dApps) for blockchain

    Because smart contracts, or self-executing business automation software, can interact with dApps, they're able to remove administrative overhead, making them one of most attractive features associated with blockchain. While blockchain acts as an immutable electronic ledger, confirming that transactions have taken place, smart contracts execute pre-determined conditions; think about a smart contract as a computer executing on "if/then," or conditional, programming.

    “DApps interact with smart contracts that are on the blockchain. So dApps support the user interface into the back-end smart contract that writes data to the blockchain,” said Avivah Litan, a vice president of research at Gartner.

    DApps run the gamut, from digital asset exchanges like LBank to online gambling like PokerKing and games like Cryptokitties. (LBank holds the equivalent of more than $1.4 billion in cryptocurrency.)

  • Sorry Steve, Open Source beat you

    CNBC Explores released a 14-minute documentary this month called "The Rise Of Open-Source Software" that open-source software "has essentially taken over the world".

    It points out that companies in every industry, from Walmart to Exxon Mobile to Verizon, have open-sourced their projects. Even Microsoft, whose former CEO, the shy and retiring Steve Ballmer (pictured) called open source "a cancer" has completely changed its point of view and is now seen as a leader in the space.

    In 2016 the US government even promised to open-source at least 20 percent of all its new custom-developed code."

  • 5 open source innovation predictions for the 2020s

    The concepts of containers and microservices were merely concepts before 2010, Ferris said. Then Docker launched in 2013, planting the early seeds of the container industry.

    At the same time, microservices — and the technologies to make them possible — were borne in open source through the Netflix OSS project.

    Docker went on to become one of the most influential technologies of the 2010s, giving rise to a myriad of new open source projects, including Kubernetes, which launched in 2015.

    Today, he noted, Kubernetes is the largest open source project on the planet. Companies are using the platform to transform monolithic application architectures, embracing containerized microservices that are supported by service mesh capabilities of projects such as Istio.

    "In the next decade, we anticipate that open source projects such as Istio, Kubernetes and OKD will focus on making containers and microservices smaller and faster to serve the needs of cloud-native development and to reduce the container's attack surface," Ferris said.

  • Fedora Update Weeks 46—52

    It’s been another little while since the last update. Mostly, this has been because the home Internet has been down for a while, so I’ve not been doing much Fedora stuff the last month. Prior to that little break though, updates were relatively steady.

    As a followup to the last update, I’ve now removed automated Suggests when they do not exist in Fedora yet from R packages that I do not own. This is a continuation of the work mentioned in the last update where I removed Suggests from my own packages.

    In any case, it looks like this will be the last update of the year. Over the last year, I’ve made ~1000 commits, created 133 new packages, and issued 1944 updates. This is about 4% of all Fedora updates over the past year.

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Linux Gaming: Play Windows games on Linux with Proton

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Raspberry Pi Zero W based LoRaWAN gateway sells for $99

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