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Games: Breakpoint, Last Stand and Unrailed!

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Gaming
  • Breakpoint is an arcade high-score seekers dream and it's ridiculously fun

    Breakpoint released today and it's an absolute joy. I don't need to bury the lead on this one, as I just want to tell you how freaking-awesome it is.

    What do you get when you take a bright neon twin-stick shooter, where the shooting has been taken away from you and replaced with exploding melee weapons? A whole lot of action and insane amount of fun that's what. I get a big smile on my face each time I load it up, as it's just genuine easy-going entertainment. Even the intro was brilliantly done, as it's both a tiny tutorial and a logo screen as you smash things and get shown the logos. Excellent touch.

  • The Last Stand update for Left 4 Dead 2 is out, plus big sale and free weekend

    The day no doubt many of our readers have been waiting for is here, as Valve worked with the community to create a brand new update to Left 4 Dead 2 named The Last Stand.

    Made in partnership with over 30 members of the modding community, it's been a long time since Valve came back to Left 4 Dead 2 in any sizeable way which is why it's so exciting. What exactly does it include? A lot. Seriously, there's loads. Some highlights include: The Last Stand Campaign and over 20 survival maps, new melee weapons, new animations, new voice lines and so much more.

    [...]

    The player count is already spiking up dramatically compared to the usual amounts. Looking on SteamDB, it took all of 15 minutes to jump another 15,000+ players on top of around that amount already online. Considering it's one of Valve's most popular games, it's not exactly surprising. This new update might even keep those counts up for some time.

  • Unrailed! is a brilliant and often incredibly frantic co-op game - out now

    Unrailed! from Indoor Astronaut and Daedalic Entertainment has now left Early Access as a finished and highly entertaining co-op experience all about keeping a train going as long as you can.

    Chop trees, mine for iron and get building. Simple mechanics but it quickly becomes absolute chaos. As you progress and stop at each station for a quick breather and upgrade, the train will then set off slightly quicker than your last run. The train will catch fire, llamas will come along and drink all your water, a thief will steal your resources and so much more. Unrailed! is a game of constant movement and it really is hilarious.

    [...]

    The big 1.0 release pulls in a new biome to build through, a "Kids" difficulty mode if Easy was still to difficult, an Extreme difficulty mode if you like to be punished, a new wagon to attach to your train, new characters and something that looks like another wagon but they kept it secret so you just have to find out.

Lenovo To Sell OEM Ubuntu PCs To the Public

  • Lenovo To Sell OEM Ubuntu PCs To the Public

    Linux on Lenovo devices is nothing new, but offering them for general sale is. In the past Lenovo has only offered Linux machines to enterprise customers. Lenovo is now extending its device certification program to include machines aimed directly at the general public. A further 27 models of desktop and laptop computers will come with Ubuntu pre-installed (via arstechnica).

    [...]

    A phased roll out starting in September 2020 and going through to 2021 will see all of the machines released. But the selection and availability of machines will depend on your location.

    Offering OEM machines to the general public could see more mainstream adoption of Linux. Ubuntu has been a popular choice for data science and software development thanks to its relative ease of use and large support base.

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Security Leftovers

  • Videoconferencing Malware, Vizom, Discovered [Ed: Wrong. Zoom itself is malware and they admit having back doors.]

    It was probably only a matter of time before the cyber attackers hit videoconferencing software in 2020. Apps such as Zoom had a bona fide boon this year because of the world health crisis. Researchers discovered a new form of malware that uses remote overlay attacks to hit Brazilian bank account holders who use videoconferencing software. [...] Phishing campaigns spread Vizom, disguising it as Zoom. Once the malware accesses a Windows computer, it hits the AppData directory to start infecting the system. Using DLL hijacking, it tries to force malicious DLLs to be loaded, using names the attackers believe are on the software directories for the Delphi-based variants.

  • Combating abuse in Matrix - without backdoors.

    Last Sunday, the UK Government published an international statement on end-to-end encryption and public safety, co-signed by representatives from the US, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, India and Japan. The statement is well written and well worth a read in full, but the central point is this:

    We call on technology companies to [...] enable law enforcement access to content in a readable and usable format where an authorisation is lawfully issued, is necessary and proportionate, and is subject to strong safeguards and oversight.
    In other words, this is an explicit request from seven of the biggest governments in the world to mandate a backdoor in end-to-end encrypted (E2EE) communication services: a backdoor to which the authorities have a secret key, letting them view communication on demand. This is big news, and is of direct relevance to Matrix as an end-to-end encrypted communication protocol whose core team is currently centred in the UK. Now, we sympathise with the authorities’ predicament here: we utterly abhor child abuse, terrorism, fascism and similar - and we did not build Matrix to enable it. However, trying to mitigate abuse with backdoors is, unfortunately, fundamentally flawed.

  • Security updates for Tuesday

    Security updates have been issued by Debian (python-flask-cors), Fedora (kleopatra, nextcloud, and phpMyAdmin), Gentoo (ark, libjpeg-turbo, libraw, and libxml2), openSUSE (bind, kernel, php7, and transfig), Red Hat (kernel, kernel-alt, kernel-rt, rh-python36, virt:8.1 and virt-devel:8.1, and virt:8.2 and virt-devel:8.2), and Ubuntu (collabtive, freetype, linux, linux-hwe, linux-hwe-5.4, linux-oem, linux-raspi, linux-raspi-5.4, linux-snapdragon, and linux-oem-osp1, linux-raspi2-5.3).

  • Reproducible Builds (diffoscope): diffoscope 161 released

    The diffoscope maintainers are pleased to announce the release of diffoscope version 161. This version includes the following changes:

    [ Chris Lamb ]
    * Fix failing testsuite: (Closes: #972518)
      - Update testsuite to support OCaml 4.11.1. (Closes: #972518)
      - Reapply Black and bump minimum version to 20.8b1.
    * Move the OCaml tests to the assert_diff helper.
    
    [ Jean-Romain Garnier ]
    * Add support for radare2 as a disassembler.
    
    [ Paul Spooren ]
    * Automatically deploy Docker images in the continuous integration pipeline.
    

today's howtos

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