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Mozilla: Management Shakeups, Glean 'Telemetry' (Spying), and Firefox Enhancer for YouTube

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Moz/FF
  • Longtime Mozilla board member Bob Lisbonne moves from Foundation to Corporate Board; Outgoing CEO Chris Beard Corporate Board Term Ends

    Today, Mozilla Co-Founder and Chairwoman Mitchell Baker announced that Mozilla Foundation Board member Bob Lisbonne has moved to the Mozilla Corporation Board; and as part of a planned, phased transition, Mozilla Corporation’s departing CEO Chris Beard has stepped down from his role as a Mozilla Corporation board member.

    “We are in debt to Chris for his myriad contributions to Mozilla,” said Mozilla Chairwoman and Co-Founder Mitchell Baker. “We’re fortunate to have Bob make this shift at a time when his expertise is so well matched for Mozilla Corporation’s current needs.”

    Bob has been a member of the Mozilla Foundation Board since 2006, but his contributions to the organization began with Mozilla’s founding. Bob played an important role in converting the earlier Netscape code into open source code and was part of the team that launched the Mozilla project in 1998.

    “I’m incredibly fortunate to have been involved with Mozilla for over two decades,” said Bob Lisbonne. “Creating awesome products and services that advance the Mozilla mission remains as important as ever. In this new role, I’m eager to contribute my expertise and help advance the Internet as a global public resource, open and accessible to all.”

    During his tenure on the Mozilla Foundation board, Bob has been a significant creative force in building both the Foundation’s programs — in particular the programs that led to MozFest — and the strength of the board. As he moves to the Mozilla Corporation Board, Bob will join the other Mozilla Corporation Board members in selecting, onboarding, and supporting a new CEO for Mozilla Corporation. Bob’s experience across innovation, investment, strategy and execution in the startup and technology arenas are particularly well suited to Mozilla Corporation’s setting.

  • This Week in Glean: A Release

    Back in June when Firefox Preview shipped, it also shipped with Glean, our new Telemetry library, initially targeting mobile platforms. Georg recently blogged about the design principles of Glean in Introducing Glean — Telemetry for humans.
    Plans for improving mobile telemetry for Mozilla go back as as far as December 2017. The first implementation of the Glean SDK was started around August 2018, all written in Kotlin (though back then it was mostly ideas in a bunch of text documents). This implementation shipped in Firefox Preview and was used up until now.
    On March 18th I created an initial Rust workspace. This kicked of a rewrite of Glean using Rust to become a cross-platform telemetry SDK to be used on Android, iOS and eventually coming back to desktop platforms again.
    1382 commits later1 I tagged v19.0.02.

  • Firefox Extension Spotlight: Enhancer for YouTube

    “I wanted to offer a useful extension people can trust,” explains Maxime RF, creator of Enhancer for YouTube, a browser extension providing a broad assortment of customization options so you can choose to tweak YouTube to taste. “Most of its features were suggested by users. It would not be used by so many people if it only offered the features I personally need.”

    Enhancer for YouTube is indeed loaded with ways to radically alter your YouTube experience—everything from the way the site looks to how it behaves. Once you have the extension installed on Firefox, a handy menu bar will automatically appear on all YouTube pages. From these simple controls you can access all manner of customization.

More in Tux Machines

The world's fastest supercomputers hit higher speeds than ever with Linux

Yes, there's a lot of talk now about how quantum computers can do jobs in 200 seconds that would take the world's fastest supercomputers 10,000 years. That's nice. But the simple truth is, for almost all jobs, supercomputers are faster than anything else on the planet. And, in the latest Top 500 supercomputer ratings, the average speed of these Linux-powered racers is now an astonishing 1.14 petaflops. The fastest of the fast machines haven't changed since the June 2019 Top 500 supercomputer list. Leading the way is Oak Ridge National Laboratory's Summit system, which holds top honors with an HPL result of 148.6 petaflops. This is an IBM-built supercomputer using Power9 CPUs and NVIDIA Tesla V100 GPUs. Read more

Programming: Django, Python and Qt

  • Introducing DjangoCon Africa

    Following the huge success of PyCon Africa, the Django community in Africa is ready to bring a new major software event to the continent - the very first DjangoCon Africa! The Django Software Foundation is excited to endorse and support this initiative. Plans are already in motion for a DjangoCon Africa to be held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia in November 2020. Actual dates to be announced as soon as key details are in place. DjangoCon Africa will include 3 days of single-track talks, 1 day of workshops and sprints, and another day for touring for international visitors. The event will also include a Django Girls workshop to be held the weekend before DjangoCon Africa. To make the conference as inclusive as possible, the event will offer financial aid to members of under-represented communities in software to ensure they can also attend.

  • Django 3.0 release candidate 1 released

    Django 3.0 release candidate 1 is the final opportunity for you to try out the raft of new features before Django 3.0 is released. The release candidate stage marks the string freeze and the call for translators to submit translations. Provided no major bugs are discovered that can't be solved in the next two weeks, Django 3.0 will be released on or around December 2. Any delays will be communicated on the django-developers mailing list thread.

  • Cyber Discovery - What it is all about

    Cyber Discovery is made of 4 rounds. The first one being CyberStart Assess. It ran from the 3rd September to the 25th October 2019. There are 10 challenges starting easy, getting much harder. The aim for most of the challenges are to use 'Inspect Element' to get into the website and find the flag. I completed all of these challenges and was invited onto the next round: CyberStart Game. CyberStart Game is much more about finding things out yourself. A useful tip if you are stuck is to search for help on Google. CyberStart Game has 3 'Bases': Headquarters where you get to take part in lots of varied challenges, Moon Base where you learn the basics of Python and Internet Tools that can be run in python e.g. FTP... You also learn how to use python to Brute Force password protected ZIP files and other securities. The Forensics Base is, well you can guess: Forensics. It teaches you about Cryptography and other hiding methods.

  • PyDev of the Week: Martin Uribe

    While taking some college courses I learned Java, but I didn’t like it much. I know enough of the following to get things done: HTML, CSS, JavaScript, Perl, SQL, and BASH. Python is my favorite; I use it pretty much every day even though my job doesn’t require me to code.

  • You can now hone your testing / pytest skills on our platform

    Writing test code is an essential skill. As PyBites we believe writing code is the only solution to becoming a master (Ninja) at programming. The same applies to test code. For that reason we extended our regular exercises with Test Bites. In this article you will read about the feature showcasing it on our first ever Test Bite. We also share some details around implementation and a challenge we hit getting it to work. Enjoy and start honing your testing skills today!

  • unu – Using Qt on embedded Linux

    Right from the start, unu wanted to add a stylish, first-class embedded high-res display to their second generation electric scooter. Like many top-class engineering companies, unu didn’t have in-house expertise for building a modern UI, so they decided to partner with KDAB to build a modern UI based on Qt. In this video you learn more about the development process in this project and why unu chose KDAB as a partner.

Google and fwupd sitting in a tree

I’ve been told by several sources (but not by Google directly, heh) that from Christmas onwards the “Designed for ChromeBook” sticker requires hardware vendors to use fwupd rather than random non-free binaries. This does make a lot of sense for Google, as all the firmware flash tools I’ve seen the source for are often decades old, contain layer-on-layers of abstractions, have dubious input sanitisation and are quite horrible to use. Many are setuid, which doesn’t make me sleep well at night, and I suspect the security team at Google also. Most vendor binaries are built for the specific ODM hardware device, and all of them but one doesn’t use any kind of source control or formal review process. The requirement from Google has caused mild panic among silicon suppliers and ODMs, as they’re having to actually interact with an open source upstream project and a slightly grumpy maintainer that wants to know lots of details about hardware that doesn’t implement one of the dozens of existing protocols that fwupd supports. These are companies that have never had to deal with working with “outside” people to develop software, and it probably comes as quite a shock to the system. To avoid repeating myself these are my basic rules when adding support for a device with a custom protocol in fwupd: I can give you advice on how to write the plugin if you give me the specifications without signing an NDA, and/or the existing code under a LGPLv2+ license. From experience, we’ll probably not end up using any of your old code in fwupd but the error defines and function names might be similar, and I don’t anyone to get “tainted” from looking at non-free code, so it’s safest all round if we have some reference code marked with the right license that actually compiles on Fedora 31. Yes, I know asking the legal team about releasing previously-nonfree code with a GPLish licence is difficult. Read more

Cumulus Networks unveils updates to its Linux OS and NetQ

Cumulus Networks announced on Monday that it has released Cumulus Linux 4.0, which is its network operating system (OS), and version 2.4 of its NetQ network operations toolset. Cumulus Networks' Partho Mishra, president and chief product officer, said Cumulus Linux 4.0 and NetQ 2.4 are key elements in the company's ongoing efforts to enable its customers' automation efforts across data centers and campus networks. "From a solutions standpoint, our focus has been on developing automation and the capabilities that our customers are going after to make their data centers run like an AWS or Google," Mishra said. "The biggest thing they focus on is automation and they've made big strides working with us and using their own resources." Read more