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today's leftovers

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  • Acer Chromebook 13 and Chromebook Spin 13 Will Support Linux Apps on Day One

    Acer's recently announced Chromebook 13 and Chromebook Spin 13 appear to be the first Chromebooks to ship with support for Linux apps out-of-the-box at launch.

    Google already announced that it worked on implementing support for Linux apps on Chrome OS during the Google I/O conference last month, and the first Chromebook to run Linux apps is Google's Pixelbook, as expected, and the functionality was later discovered to be available on the Samsung Chromebook Plus as well.

  • Why Open Source Needs Marketing (Even Though Developers Hate It)
  • ASIFA-Hollywood Continues Commitment To Open Source Animation Technology

    “The last few years, there have been incredible advancements in the quality of open source software solutions for artists,” says Danny Young, ASIFA-Hollywood board member. “Open Source software development is more than ever serving as a counterweight to put fantastic free technology in the hands of anyone who is curious enough to explore it. By supporting ASIFA-Hollywood, you make projects like this possible. So, thank you, ASIFA membership!”

  • Collabora Office 6.0

    Today we release Collabora Office 6.0 – the Migrator’s Choice with great features to smooth our customers’ migration to an Open Source office suite as well as a hugely improved set of features and enhancements.

  • BrowserStack Announces Enhanced Open-Source Program, EU's Web Censorship Plan, Qt for Python Now Available and More

    BrowserStack this morning announced its enhanced open source program, which offers free testing of open source software on the BrowserStack Real Device Cloud. The press release states that "BrowserStack is doubling down on its support for open source projects with full and unlimited access to the BrowserStack platform and its capabilities. The goal is to empower open source developers with the tools and infrastructure necessary to test with speed, accuracy and scale." See the BrowserStack blog post "Supporting Open Source to Drive Community Innovation" for more on BrowserStack's commitment to open source.

  • Locks in the classroom – 2018

    For the sixth year now, our grade nine students have been doing 3D modeling using Blender. We ran late this year, but the final locks were finished a couple of weeks ago, and they’re finally ready for publishing.

  • CVE-2018-3665: Lazy State Save/Restore As The Latest CPU Speculative Execution Issue

    The latest speculative execution vulnerability affecting modern CPUs has now been made public: Lazy State Save/Restore, a.k.a. CVE-2018-3665.

    This vulnerability concerns saving/restore state when switching between applications. The newly-disclosed vulnerability exploits lazy-state restores for floating-point state when context switching, which is done as a performance optimization, to obtain information about the activity of other applications on the system.

  • AI Is Coming to Edge Computing Devices

    Very few non-server systems run software that could be called machine learning (ML) and artificial intelligence (AI). Yet, server-class “AI on the Edge” applications are coming to embedded devices, and Arm intends to fight with Intel and AMD over every last one of them.

  • Cortex-A76, Mali-G76, and ML chip designs pump up AI

    Arm’s Cortex-A76 design offers speed/efficiency improvements including a 4x boost in AI performance, and is paired with a new Mali-G76 GPU that is also said to aid AI. Meanwhile, Arm revealed more details on its upcoming ML co-processors.

More in Tux Machines

Librem One Design Principles: Services You Can Trust

Our hardware and software puts users back in control of computing–but, you may be wondering, can we do the same with our services? With Librem One, the answer is yes. We have big, no, huge dreams about what we can achieve with your support and the wealth of free software that already exists. But we need to keep our feet firmly on the ground. In this post we will outline the touchstones we have used to do just that–engineer trustworthy services that everyone can use–with a design process called user-centered software engineering. We hope it will facilitate communication with friends and colleagues as we hack towards a common goal… and also show all non-technical readers that human beings are at the center of our bits and bytes. So, how did we do it? Read more Also: joining social media at DebConf19

Programming Leftovers: Python, Go, LLVM and More

  • Python List Sorting with sorted() and sort()

    In this article, we'll examine multiple ways to sort lists in Python. Python ships with two built-in methods for sorting lists and other iterable objects. The method chosen for a particular use-case often depends on whether we want to sort a list in-place or return a new version of the sorted list.

  • ExpressPython: Lightweight, portable Python editor for small scripts

    There are many IDEs for Python, and it’s time for one more. ExpressPython is a lightweight, small code editor for Python 3. Originally built to help teach students how to code, it can be used in programming competitions, or just when you need a fast, small, clean code editor. There are a wide variety of Python IDEs and code editors available for programmers. Between PyCharm, VS Code, IDLE, Spyder, just to name a few, programmers have many to choose from depending on their needs and preferences. Add one more editor to the fray. ExpressPython is a small, lightweight Python 3 editor that can help with learning and competitive programming, such as coding challenges. Its creator started work on it in 2014 in order to fulfill a few needs, such as the ability to work offline. It is not made with the intent of becoming a fully-featured IDE, and does not include debugging features. However, it does have a few noteworthy features, so let’s take a look.

  • Google's Go team decides not to give it a try

    The Go language will not be adding a "try" keyword in the next major version, despite this being a major part of what was proposed for version 1.14. Go, an open source language developed by Google, features static typing and native code compilation. It is around the 15th most popular language according to the Redmonk rankings. Error handling in Go is currently based on using if statements to compare a returned error value to nil. If it is nil, no error occurred. This requires developers to write a lot of if statements. "In general Go programs have too much code-checking errors and not enough code handling them," wrote Google principal engineer Russ Cox in an overview of the error-handling problem in Go.

  • LLVM 9.0 Feature Work Is Over While LLVM 10.0 Enters Development

    Feature work is over on LLVM 9.0 as the next release for this widely-used compiler stack ranging from the AMDGPU shader compiler back-end to the many CPU targets and other innovative use-cases for this open-source compiler infrastructure. Ongoing LLVM release manager Hans Wennborg branched the LLVM 9.0 code-base this morning while in turn opening LLVM 10.0 development on trunk/master. This also marks the 9.0 branching for all LLVM sub-projects.

  • Mu at EuroPython

    Mu made a number of appearances at last week’s wonderful EuroPython 2019 conference in Basel, Switzerland.

  • PyCharm 2019.2 Release Candidate

    PyCharm 2019.2 is almost ready to be released, and we’re happy to announce that a release candidate is available for download now.

Security: EvilGnome Scaremongering, Intel Defects, New Patches and the "Desktop Security Nightmare"

  • EvilGnome Is A Linux Spyware That Records Audio And Steals Your Files [Ed: FOSSBytes has moved on from pushing non-FOSS misinformation to actually doing anti-FOSS FUD. Painting malware one needs to actually install as a real threat.]
  • CPU vulnerability mitigations keeping Linux devs busy: SUSE's Pavlík [Ed: Intel defects now waste software developers' time. They should just replace/recall those billions of defective chips]

    A veteran Linux kernel developer at Germany-based SUSE says the one thing that keeps him and his team busy these days is CPU vulnerability mitigations...

  • Security updates for Friday

    Security updates have been issued by Debian (bzip2), Fedora (freetds, kernel, kernel-headers, and knot-resolver), openSUSE (bubblewrap, fence-agents, kernel, libqb, libu2f-host, pam_u2f, and tomcat), Oracle (vim), SUSE (kernel, LibreOffice, libxml2, and tomcat), and Ubuntu (libmspack and squid, squid3).

  • The Desktop Security Nightmare

    Many of us have extremely sensitive data on our systems. Emails to family, medical or bank records, Bitcoin wallets, browsing history, the list goes on. Although we have isolation between our user account and root, we have no isolation between applications that run as our user account. We still, in effect, have to be careful about what attachments we open in email. Only now it’s worse. You might “npm install hello-world”, and audit hello-world itself, but get some totally malicious code as well. How many times do we see instructions to gem install this, pip install that, go get the other, and even curl | sh? Nowadays our risky click isn’t an email attachment. It’s hosted on Github with a README.md. Not only that, but my /usr/bin has over 4000 binaries. Have every one been carefully audited? Certainly not, and this is from a distro with some of the highest quality control around. What about the PPAs that people add? The debs or rpms that are installed from the Internet? Are you sure that the postinst scripts — which run as root — aren’t doing anything malicious when you install Oracle Virtualbox? [...] One thing a person could do would be to keep the sensitive data on a separate, ideally encrypted, filesystem. (Maybe even a fuse one such as gocryptfs.) Then, at least, it could be unavailable for most of the time the system is on. Of course, the downside here is that it’s still going to be available to everything when it is mounted, and there’s the hassle of mounting, remembering to unmount, password typing, etc. Not exactly transparent. I wondered if mount namespaces might be an answer here. A filesystem could be mounted but left pretty much unavailable to processes unless a proper mount namespace is joined. Indeed that might be a solution. It is somewhat complicated, though, since nsenter requires root to work. Enter sudo, and dropping privileges back to a particular user — a not particularly ideal situation, and complex as well. Still, it might well have some promise for some of these things.

Audiocasts/Shows: Ubuntu Podcast, Python Podcasts, User Error

  • Ubuntu Podcast: S12E15 – Diablo

    This week we’ve been buying a new phone and playing with QEMU. We discuss the release fo Debian 10, Ubuntu users saying “Thank you”, Nvidia drivers, WSL and Ubuntu MATE for the GPD MicroPC. We also round up some events and tech news. It’s Season 12 Episode 15 of the Ubuntu Podcast! Mark Johnson, Martin Wimpress and Stuart Langridge are connected and speaking to your brain.

  • Episode #139: f"Yes!" for the f-strings
  • Episode #221: Empowering developers by embedding Python

    How do we get kids excited about programming? Make programming tangible with embedded devices. Did you know that after kids learned to code with the BBC micro:bit, 90% of kids "thought coding was for everyone" and 86% said it made CS topics more interesting?

  • Old and Insecure | User Error 70

    Whether Linux is inherently secure, the next phase of online interaction, and wasting our free time. Plus where to focus your contributions, and a tricky hypothetical question.