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Thursday, 18 Jan 18 - Tux Machines is a community-driven public service/news site which has been around for over a decade and primarily focuses on GNU/LinuxSubscribe now Syndicate content

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Quick Roundup

Type Title Author Replies Last Postsort icon
Story How To Install Windows 10 In Virtualbox On Linux Mohd Sohail 17/01/2018 - 6:06pm
Story OSS Leftovers and Security Roy Schestowitz 17/01/2018 - 5:19pm
Story Software: VirtualBox, Dillinger, FBReader, KDE Discover Roy Schestowitz 17/01/2018 - 5:17pm
Story Mozilla Leftovers Roy Schestowitz 17/01/2018 - 5:12pm
Story GNU: GCC 7.3 and LibrePlanet 2018 Keynote Speakers Roy Schestowitz 17/01/2018 - 5:10pm
Story Open Source in 3-D Printing Roy Schestowitz 17/01/2018 - 5:08pm
Story Android Leftovers Rianne Schestowitz 17/01/2018 - 4:13pm
Story today's howtos Roy Schestowitz 17/01/2018 - 4:07pm
Story Graphics: RadeonSI NIR Backend, RADV Vulkan Driver, Direct Rendering Manager Roy Schestowitz 17/01/2018 - 4:04pm
Story Will 2018 Be the Year of the Linux Desktop Roy Schestowitz 17/01/2018 - 4:00pm

GNOME Devs to Users: Desktop Icons Are Moving to GNOME Shell with GNOME 3.28

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GNOME

There appears to be a lot of fuss lately about the removal of an option from the GNOME desktop environment that allows users to display icons on their desktops.

Long story short, last month, near the Christmas holidays, GNOME developer Carlos Soriano shared his plans on removing a so-called "the desktop" feature from the Nautilus file manager starting with the upcoming GNOME 3.28 release of the desktop environment, proposing its integration into the GNOME Shell component.

The feature is there to handle application icons on the user's workspace, but it shouldn't have been implemented in Nautilus in the first place, according to the developer. So for the GNOME devs to be able to add new features to the Nautilus file manager, they need to remove its ability to handle desktop icons and place the code somewhere else.

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Red Hat News and Posts

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Red Hat

Yocto-on-i.MX6UL gateway serves up I2C and SPI on a DB9 port

Filed under
Linux
Hardware

Axiomtek’s compact “IFB125” DIN-rail IoT gateway runs Yocto Linux on an i.MX6 UL SoC with dual LANs, mini-PCIe expansion, extended temperature and vibration resistance, COM and USB ports, and a DB9 port that supports both SPI and I2C.

Axiomtek has released a minor variation on its IFB122 IoT gateway. Like the IDB122, the new IFB125 runs Yocto Project code with Linux 3.14.52 on NXP’s 528MHz Cortex-A7 based i.MX6 UltraLight (UL) SoC. The headless gateway is designed for remote control and remote monitoring management applications such as unmanned control room, industrial automation, automatic parking lot, and traffic cabinets.

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Also: Display-oriented eNUC SBC runs on Apollo Lake

Linux Foundation and Verizon

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Linux
  • Verizon joins the Linux Foundation's ONAP project

    Verizon has joined the Open Network Automation Platform (ONAP) project as a Platinum member, a move that reflects the service provider's desire to drive industry harmony around network virtualization and automation.

    ONAP brings together several global carriers and vendors to build an automation and orchestration platform to transform the service delivery lifecycle for network, cable and cloud providers.

  • Verizon Joins Linux Foundation's Open Network Automation Platform Project as Platinum Member

    Verizon and The Linux Foundation, the nonprofit organization enabling mass innovation through open source, announced today that Verizon has joined the Open Network Automation Platform (ONAP) project as a Platinum member. ONAP brings together the majority of global carriers and vendors to build an automation and orchestration platform to transform the service delivery lifecycle for network, cable and cloud providers. ONAP enables nearly 60 percent of the world's mobile subscribers.

KDE Plasma's Discover Package Manager Gets Better Snap and Flatpak Support

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KDE

After sharing last week more info on the maturity of Flatpak support in KDE Plasma's Discover package manager, now Nathaniel Graham published details on some new user-facing highlights of what's done in Plasma Discover in the last week or so, and there's quite a bunch of improvements for both Snap and Flatpak universal binary formats.

For Snaps, Plasma Discover now no longer lets users click the "Install" button during the installation of Snaps, displays information on the license for Snaps, as well as the size of Snaps that aren’t installed on user's computer. For Flatpak apps, it now shows the version number if that info is defined in the AppStream file.

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KWin/X11 is feature frozen

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KDE

Yesterday the KDE Community released the Beta for Plasma 5.12 LTS. With that release the feature freeze for 5.12 is in place and also an eternal feature freeze for KWin/X11. To quote the release announcement: “5.12 is the last release which sees feature development in KWin on X11. With 5.13 onwards only new features relevant to Wayland are going to be added.” This raised quite some questions, concerns and misunderstandings in the social networks. With this blog post I try to address those question and explain why this change in policy is done.

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Also: KDE's KWin Now Considers Its X11 Code To Be Under An "Eternal Feature Freeze"

Plasma 5.12 LTS beta available in PPA for testing on Artful & Bionic

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KDE

Adventurous users, testers and developers running Artful 17.10 or our development release Bionic 18.04 can now test the beta version of Plasma 5.12 LTS.

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Also: Kubuntu 17.10 and 18.04 Users Can Now Try the KDE Plasma 5.12 LTS Desktop

Leftovers: Proprietary Software, HowTos, and GXml

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Software
OSS
HowTos

Debian Developers: Google Summer of Code, Quick Recap of 2017

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Debian
  • RHL'18 in Saint-Cergue, Switzerland

    In between eating fondue and skiing, I found time to resurrect some of my previous project ideas for Google Summer of Code. Most of them are not specific to Debian, several of them need co-mentors, please contact me if you are interested.

  • Quick recap of 2017

        

    After the Stretch release, it was time to attend DebConf’17 in Montreal, Canada. I’ve presented the latest news on the Debian Installer front there as well. This included a quick demo of my little framework which lets me run automatic installation tests. Many attendees mentioned openQA as the current state of the art technology for OS installation testing, and Philip Hands started looking into it. Right now, my little thing is still useful as it is, helping me reproduce regressions quickly, and testing bug fixes… so I haven’t been trying to port that to another tool yet.

    I also gave another presentation in two different contexts: once at a local FLOSS meeting in Nantes, France and once during the mini-DebConf in Toulouse, France. Nothing related to Debian Installer this time, as the topic was how I helped a company upgrade thousands of machines from Debian 6 to Debian 8 (and to Debian 9 since then). It was nice to have Evolix people around, since we shared our respective experience around automation tools like Ansible and Puppet.

Devices: Raspberry Pi and Android

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Android
Linux

Command Line Heroes Launched

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Red Hat
  • Red Hat launches new podcast series, Command Line Heroes

    Technology has become so integrated into our daily lives that it can be easy to take it for granted. But we’ve only gotten to where we are today because of the command line heroes that shaped the industry - and continue to do so.

    Command line hero. What does that really mean? To us it’s the developers, programmers, hackers, geeks and open source rebels - the people who are on the front line, transforming technology from the command line up. The biggest technology advancements and innovations didn’t happen by accident. They were made possible through the passion, creativity and persistence of technologists around the world.

  • Command Line Heroes

    I’ve been looking forward to this for quite a while, ever since it was announced: today, the first two episodes of Command Line Heroes were published. Command Line Heroes, or CLH for short, is a series of podcasts that tells the stories of open source. It’s hosted by Saron Yitbarek, of CodeNewbie fame, and sponsored by Red Hat.

NethServer, Red Hat, and Fedora

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Red Hat
  • Why building a community is worth the extra effort

    Building the NethServer community was risky. But we've learned so much about the power of working with passionate people.

  • Risk Malaise Alert in Option Market: Red Hat Inc Implied Price Swing Hits A Deteriorated Level
  • Red Hat (NYSE:RHT) Receives “Neutral” Rating from Credit Suisse Group
  • Sit Investment Associates Inc. Takes $1.22 Million Position in Red Hat Inc (RHT)
  • Fixing flatpak startup times

    A lot of people have noticed that flatpak apps sometimes start very slowly. Upon closer inspection you notice this only happens the first time you run the application. Still, it gives a very poor first time impression.

    So, what is causing this, and can we fix it?

    The short answer to this is font-cache generation, and yes, I landed a fix today. For the longer version we have to take a detour into how flatpak and fontconfig works.

  • Fedora 28 wallpaper contest now open -- submit your image to the Linux distro!

    One of the first things I do after installing a new Linux distribution is set a different wallpaper. Why? Desktop pictures really inspire me -- my mood can be positively altered by a beautiful image. The default wallpaper is often boring. For the most part, I prefer images of nature with bright colors. After all, if I am stuck indoors working on my computer, a wallpaper of the beach, mountains, or a colorful bird, for instance, can transport me to the outdoors -- in my mind.

    Sadly, not every distro has beautiful high-quality images. Fedora, however, often does -- thanks to its "supplemental" wallpapers. What is particularly cool  about that operating system, is that it regularly accepts wallpaper submissions from the community as part of a contest. In other words, anybody can potentially contribute to a new version of the distro by simply uploading a photo, drawing, or other picture. Fedora 28 is the upcoming version of the OS, and the developers are now calling for wallpaper submissions for it. Will you submit an entry to the contest?

OSS Leftovers

Filed under
OSS
  • Google's Kelsey Hightower talks Kubernetes and community

    Google developer advocate Kelsey Hightower says that he always figured that the (now wildly successful) Kubernetes container orchestration platform "would get big on its own at some point." He shared some of the reasons he sees for Kubernetes' success in a podcast recorded in December at CloudNativeCon in Austin.

    The first is that Kubernetes is an effective platform on which to do other things. It provides "better primitives than I had before" as Hightower puts it. At the same time, he says that this is something people misunderstand about Kubernetes. "It's not the end game," he says. Rather, at some point, it increasingly becomes "the new platform for building other platforms."

  • A FOSS Year Resolution

    It’s that time of year again. The time when some people are taking a long hard look at their lives and trying to decide what they want to change about themselves over the course of the next year. Some of us want to lose weight, or exercise more, or spend more time with our kids. The trouble is only about 9% of these resolutions actually happen.

  • Do not limit yourself

    The motto of Learn yourself, teach others is still very strong among us. We try to break any such stupid limits others try to force on our lives. We dream, we try to enjoying talking about that book someone just finished. We discuss about our favorite food. I will end this post saying one thing again. Do not bound yourself in some non existing limits. Always remember, What a great teacher, failure is (I hope I quoted Master Yoda properly). Not everything we will try in life will be a super successful thing, but we can always try to learn from those incidents. You don’t have to bow down in front of anyone, you can do things you love in your life without asking for others’ permissions.

  • Benjamin Mako Hill: OpenSym 2017 Program Postmortem

    The International Symposium on Open Collaboration (OpenSym, formerly WikiSym) is the premier academic venue exclusively focused on scholarly research into open collaboration. OpenSym is an ACM conference which means that, like conferences in computer science, it’s really more like a journal that gets published once a year than it is like most social science conferences. The “journal”, in iithis case, is called the Proceedings of the International Symposium on Open Collaboration and it consists of final copies of papers which are typically also presented at the conference. Like journal articles, papers that are published in the proceedings are not typically published elsewhere.

  • NVDA and Firefox 58 – The team is regaining strength

    A week before the Firefox 57 “Quantum” release in November, I published an Article detailing some bits to be aware of when using Firefox and the NVDA screen reader together. In Firefox 58, due on January 23, 2018, the reliable team is regaining strength in playing well together and offering you good and fast web accessibility.

    After the Firefox 57 release, due to many changes under the hood, NVDA and Firefox temporarily lapsed in performance. Statistics quickly showed that about two thirds of the NVDA user base stayed with us despite of this. So to all of you who stuck with us on this difficult release: Thank you! Many of the others moved to the extended support release of Firefox 52. Thank you to those of you as well, you decided to stick with Firefox! Also, statistics show that barely any of those of you who stuck with 57 decided to turn off multi-process Firefox, but instead used the new technology, and some of you even reported problems to us.

  • Retpoline-enabled GCC

    There will be upstream backports at least to GCC 7, but probably pretty far back (I've seen people talk about all the way to 4.3). So you won't have to run my crappy home-grown build for very long—it's a temporary measure. Smile

    Oh, and it made Stockfish 3% faster than with GCC 6.3! Hooray.

  • Payara Services to Embed Secure, Stable Open Source Java Runtime from Azul SystemsPayara Server 2018 Update Includes Azul Zulu Enterprise Builds of OpenJDK
  • Eclipse Che – A Next-Generation Cloud IDE and Workspace Server

    We have a couple of posts on developer workspaces and cloud IDEs but in my opinion, none of them has the combined features of beauty, flexibility, and efficiency while being free. That is why it is with great pleasure that I introduce to you the (arguably) best cloud-based IDE you will ever need, Eclipse Che.

    Eclipse Che is a beautiful and customizable open-source developer workspace and cloud Integrated Development Environment.

Security: Hospital With Windows, Reproducible Builds, Intel, Transmission and More

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Security
  • Hospital [sic] sent offline as hackers infect systems with ransomware, demand payment [iophk: "Windows"]
  • Reproducible Builds: Weekly report #142
  • Spectre and Meltdown patches causing trouble as realistic attacks get closer

    Applications, operating systems, and firmware all need to be updated to defeat Meltdown and protect against Spectre, two attacks that exploit features of high-performance processors to leak information and undermine system security. The computing industry has been scrambling to respond after news of the problem broke early a few days into the new year.

    But that patching is proving problematic. The Meltdown protection is revealing bugs or otherwise undesirable behavior in various drivers, and Intel is currently recommending that people cease installing a microcode update it issued to help tackle the Spectre problem. This comes as researchers are digging into the papers describing the issues and getting closer to weaponizing the research to turn it into a practical attack. With the bad guys sure to be doing the same, real-world attacks using this research are sure to follow soon.

  • Finnish firm detects new Intel security flaw

    new security flaw has been found in Intel hardware which could enable hackers to access corporate laptops remotely, Finnish cybersecurity specialist F-Secure said on Friday.

    F-Secure said in a statement that the flaw had nothing to do with the "Spectre" and "Meltdown" vulnerabilities recently found in the micro-chips that are used in almost all computers, tablets and smartphones today.

    Rather, it was an issue within Intel Active Management Technology (AMT), "which is commonly found in most corporate laptops, (and) allows an attacker to take complete control over a user's device in a matter of seconds," the cybersecurity firm said.

  • What is RubyMiner? New malware found targeting Windows and Linux servers to mine cryptocurrency
  • BitTorrent flaw could let hackers take control of Windows, Linux PCs

    According to Project Zero, the client is vulnerable to a DNS re-binding attack that effectively tricks the PC into accepting requests via port 9091 from malicious websites that it would (and should) ordinarily ignore.

  • BitTorrent critical flaw allows hackers to remotely control users' computers

    A critical flaw in the popular Transmission BitTorrent app could allow hackers to remotely control users' computers. The flaw, uncovered by Google Project Zero security researchers, allows websites to execute malicious code on users' devices. Researchers also warned that BitTorrent clients could be susceptible to attacks as well if the flaw is leveraged.

Graphics: AMDGPU, Mesa, Nouveau

Filed under
Graphics/Benchmarks
  • GPU Voltage Control Support Coming To AMDGPU Driver

    Patches are being prepped to improve the OverDrive overclocking/underclocking support within the AMDGPU DRM driver and for allowing voltage controls.

  • Mesa 17.3.3 Is On The Way With Better Vega Support On Vulkan

    Mesa 17.3.3 should be released later this week with nearly three dozen fixes over the previous Mesa 17.3 point release.

  • Advanced DRI Configurator: A New Mesa GUI Project

    An independent open-source developer has announced "Advanced DRI Configurator" in what he's hoping could eventually replace DriConf for configuring Mesa parameters.

    Developer Jean Hertel has announced his initial work on trying to write a DriConf replacement. The Advanced DRI Configurator, or "adriconf" for short, is this young project written in C++ and GTKmm.

  • Red Hat Developer Manages Full Clock-Gating For Kepler With Nouveau

    In improving the power-savings of NVIDIA GeForce 600/700 "Kepler" GPUs running on the open-source NVIDIA "Nouveau" driver, Red Hat developer Lyude Paul has published a set of patches allowing for full clock-gating with these older graphics cards.

    Following lots of reverse engineering, rewrites, and tracing the behavior of the NVIDIA proprietary driver, Lyude has implemented all known levels of clock-gating for Kepler1/Kepler2 GPUs. Lyude was also working on Fermi GPU support, but its clock-gating is being handled differently and currently that code isn't yet ready.

Linux and GNU

Filed under
GNU
Linux
  • Analyzing the Linux boot process

    The oldest joke in open source software is the statement that "the code is self-documenting." Experience shows that reading the source is akin to listening to the weather forecast: sensible people still go outside and check the sky. What follows are some tips on how to inspect and observe Linux systems at boot by leveraging knowledge of familiar debugging tools. Analyzing the boot processes of systems that are functioning well prepares users and developers to deal with the inevitable failures.

  • BPF Getting Error Injection & More In Linux 4.16

    While BPF has been under the spotlight recently in light of Spectre, with the upcoming Linux 4.16 cycle this in-kernel virtual machine and originally packet filter will be picking up new features.

  • Jailhouse Guest Support Queued For Linux 4.16

    Yet more functionality to find with the upcoming Linux 4.16 kernel is the first bits of Jailhouse hypervisor functionality being mainlined.

    Since at least 2013 Siemens has been developing the Jailhouse hypervisor for Linux systems. This partitioning hypervisor aims to be lighter than KVM and Siemens has been designing it for "highly demanding real-time, safety or security" workloads.

  • Retpoline patch coming to Linux 4.9 and Linux 4.14

    Several Linux kernel versions, including 4.9, 4.14, and the upcoming 4.15, will have Retpoline support built in to mitigate against the Spectre vulnerability. Greg Kroah-Hartman, one of the head honchos overlooking kernel development, accepted the patch into the 4.9 and 4.14 kernels meaning Linux users everywhere should be secure from Spectre without any performance hits.

    The exact kernel versions to look out for are 4.9.77 and 4.14.14. Unfortunately, for those of us still on Linux 4.4 and 3.18, which are still supported, there is no sign of the Retpoline patch just yet despite getting receiving other updates. Hopefully it’ll be released in a subsequent update after they’ve had time to monitor for any problems in 4.9 and 4.14.

  • Retpoline Support Backport Lands In GCC 7

    The backporting of -mindirect-branch, -mindirect-return and -mindirect-branch-register, a.k.a. the GCC "Retpoline" patches, have been back-ported and merged into the GCC 7 branch.

    Given the severity of the Spectre vulnerability, these features for Retpoline support are being back-ported to GCC branches normally only reserved for bug/regression/documentation fixes.

  • Linux kernel mailing list back online; Meltdown and Spectre vulnerabilities; Mobile OS eelo; Barcelona now using Linux

    The popular Linux Kernel Mailing List website is back online after going down and staying down for several days due to a power outage to the home server where it was hosted. Upon reboot, a password (for dm-crypt) was required to mount the root device; however, that in itself was not the problem. The problem was the fact that the PC’s owner, Jasper, was on vacation when all of this occurred. Anyway, the site is now back up and continuing to operate as it always has.

    Speaking of the kernel mailing lists, Johannes Weiner issued a call for proposals for agenda topics to the upcoming annual 2018 Linux Storage, Filesystem and Memory Management (LSF/MM) Summit. The deadline is January 31, 2018, and the summit will be held between April 23-25 At Deer Valley Lodges in Park City, Utah. For more information, visit the Linux Foundation Events page.

  • Documentary films on Linux!

    The Code & Revolution OS! Those are documentary films released in 2001. The Code is based on birth and journey of Linux & Revolution OS is based on 20 years journey of Linux, GNU, Open Source world.

Microsoft versus (or inside) Linux

Filed under
Linux

Barcelona is moving to Linux; why not Dhaka?

Filed under
GNU
Linux

The Spanish city of Barcelona just announced a few days ago (https://www.itwire.com/open-source/81377-barcelona-plans-move-to-open-source-software.html) that it has successfully completed a pilot project of moving 1,000 desktops of municipality employees from Microsoft Windows and MS Office to free/open-source alternatives, Ubuntu Linux (www.ubuntu.com/desktop) and LibreOffice (www.libreoffice.org).

The question is why countries like Bangladesh, which are much less wealthy than Spain, are not making similar moves to replace expensive Microsoft software with free/open-source alternatives.

The simple fact is that there is almost no awareness of the real cost of Microsoft software in Bangladesh, as software piracy is so commonplace. Every market has shops stocking pirated MS Windows/MS Office DVDs; so the public can be forgiven for thinking that these are practically free of cost.

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Kernel: Kernelci.org, Tripwire, Linux Foundation, R600 Gallium3D

  • Kernelci.org automated bisection
    The kernelci.org project aims at continuously testing the mainline Linux kernel, from stable branches to linux-next on a variety of platforms. When a revision fails to build or boot, kernel developers get informed via email reports. A summary of all the results can also be found directly on the website.
  • Securing the Linux filesystem with Tripwire
    While Linux is considered to be the most secure operating system (ahead of Windows and MacOS), it is still vulnerable to rootkits and other variants of malware. Thus, Linux users need to know how to protect their servers or personal computers from destruction, and the first step they need to take is to protect the filesystem. In this article, we'll look at Tripwire, an excellent tool for protecting Linux filesystems. Tripwire is an integrity checking tool that enables system administrators, security engineers, and others to detect alterations to system files. Although it's not the only option available (AIDE and Samhain offer similar features), Tripwire is arguably the most commonly used integrity checker for Linux system files, and it is available as open source under GPLv2.
  • Open Source Networking and a Vision of Fully Automated Networks
    Arpit Joshipura, Networking General Manager at The Linux Foundation, discussed open source networking trends at Open Source Summit Europe. Ever since the birth of local area networks, open source tools and components have driven faster and more capable network technologies forward. At the recent Open Source Summit event in Europe, Arpit Joshipura, Networking General Manager at The Linux Foundation, discussed his vision of open source networks and how they are being driven by full automation. “Networking is cool again,” he said, opening his keynote address with observations on software-defined networks, virtualization, and more. Joshipura is no stranger to network trends. He has led major technology deployments across enterprises, carriers, and cloud architectures, and has been a steady proponent of open source. “This is an extremely important time for our industry,” he said. “There are more than 23 million open source developers, and we are in an environment where everyone is asking for faster and more reliable services.”
  • R600 Gallium3D Gets Some Last Minute Improvements In Mesa 18.0
    These days when Dave Airlie isn't busy managing the DRM subsystem or hacking on the RADV Vulkan driver, he's been spending a fair amount of time on some OpenGL improvements to the aging R600 Gallium3D driver. That's happened again and he's landed some more improvements just ahead of the imminent Mesa 18.0 feature freeze.

OSS Leftovers

  • Reliance Jio and global tech leaders come together to push Open Source in India
    The India Digital Open Summit which will be held tomorrow at the Reliance Corporate Park campus in Navi Mumbai -is a must-attend event for industry leaders, policymakers, technologists, academia, and developer communities working towards India’s digital leadership through Open Source platforms. The summit is hosted by Reliance Jio in partnership with the Linux Foundation and supported by Cisco Systems.
  • Open-source software simulates river and runoff resources
    Freshwater resources are finite, unevenly distributed, and changing through time. The demand—and competition—for water is expected to grow both in the United States and in the developing/developed world. To examine the connection between supply and demand and resulting regional and global water stresses, a team developed Xanthos. The open-source hydrologic model is available for free and helps researchers explore the details and analyze global water availability. Researchers can use Xanthos to examine the implications of different climate, socioeconomic, and/or energy scenarios over the 21st century. They can then assess the effects of the scenarios on regional and global water availability. Xanthos can be used in three different ways. It can operate as an independent hydrologic model, driven, for example, by scenarios. It can serve as the core freshwater supply component of the Global Change Assessment Model, where multiple sectors and natural systems are modeled simultaneously as part of an interconnected, complex system. Further, it can be used by other integrated models and multi-model frameworks that focus on energy-water-land interactions.
  • “The Apache Way” — Open source done well
    I was at an industry conference and was happy to see many people stopping by the Apache booth. I was pleased that they were familiar with the Apache brand, yet puzzled to learn that so many were unfamiliar with The Apache Software Foundation (ASF). For this special issue, “All Eyes On Open Source”, it’s important to recognize not just Apache’s diverse projects and communities, but also the entity behind their success. Gone are the days when software and technology, in general, were developed privately for the benefit of the few. As technology evolves, the challenges we face become more complex, and the only way to effectively move forward to create the technology of the future is to collaborate and work together. Open Source is a perfect framework for that, and organizations like the ASF carry out a decisive role in protecting its spirit and principles.
  • ​Learn how to run Linux on Microsoft's Azure cloud
  • LLVM 6.0-RC1 Makes Its Belated Debut
    While LLVM/Clang 6.0 was branched earlier this month and under a feature freeze with master/trunk moving to LLVM 7.0, two weeks later the first release candidate is now available. Normally the first release candidate comes immediately following the branching / feature freeze, but not this time due to the shifted schedule with a slow start to satisfy an unnamed company seeking to align their internal testing with LLVM 6.0.
  • Hackers can’t dig into latest Xiaomi phone due to GPL violations
     

    Yet another Android OEM is dragging its feet with its GPL compliance. This time, it's Xiaomi with the Mi A1 Android One device, which still hasn't seen a kernel source code release.  

    Android vendors are required to release their kernel sources thanks to the Linux kernel's GPLv2 licensing. The Mi A1 has been out for about three months now, and there's still no source code release on Xiaomi's official github account.

  • 2017 - The Year in Which Copyright Went Beyond Source Code
    2017 was a big year for raising the profile of copyright in protecting computer programs. Two cases in particular helped bring attention to a myth that was addressed and dispelled some time ago but persists in some circles nonetheless. Many lawyers hold on to the notion that copyright protection for software is weak because such protection inheres in the source code of computer programs. Because most companies that generate code take extensive (and often successful) measures to keep source code out of the hands of third parties, the utility of copyright protection for code is often viewed as limited. However, copyright also extends to the “non-literal elements” of computer programs, such as their sequence, structure and organization, as well as to things such as screen displays and certain user interfaces. In other words, copyright infringement can occur when copying certain outputs of the code without there ever having been access to the underlying code itself.
  • Announcing WebBook Level 1, a new Web-based format for electronic books
    Eons ago, at a time BlueGriffon was only a Wysiwyg editor for the Web, my friend Mohamed Zergaoui asked why I was not turning BlueGriffon into an EPUB editor... I had been observing the electronic book market since the early days of Cytale and its Cybook but I was not involved into it on a daily basis. That seemed not only an excellent idea, but also a fairly workable one. EPUB is based on flavors of HTML so I would not have to reinvent the wheel. I started diving into the EPUB specs the very same day, EPUB 2.0.1 (released in 2009) at that time. I immediately discovered a technology that was not far away from the Web but that was also clearly not the Web. In particular, I immediately saw that two crucial features were missing: it was impossible to aggregate a set of Web pages into a EPUB book through a trivial zip, and it was impossible to unzip a EPUB book and make it trivially readable inside a Web browser even with graceful degradation. When the IDPF started working on EPUB 3.0 (with its 3.0.1 revision) and 3.1, I said this was coming too fast, and that the lack of Test Suites with interoperable implementations as we often have in W3C exit criteria was a critical issue. More importantly, the market was, in my opinion, not ready to absorb so quickly two major and one minor revisions of EPUB given the huge cost on both publishing chains and existing ebook bases. I also thought - and said - the EPUB 3.x specifications were suffering from clear technical issues, including the two missing features quoted above.
  • Firefox 58 Bringing Faster WebAssembly Compilation With Two-Tiered Compiler
    With the launch of Mozilla Firefox 58 slated for next week, WebAssembly will become even faster thanks to a new two-tiered compiler.
  • New Kernel Releases, Net Neutrality, Thunderbird Survey and More
    In an effort to protect Net Neutrality (and the internet), Mozilla filed a petition in federal court yesterday against the FCC. The idea behind Net Neutrality is to treat all internet traffic equally and without discrimination against content or type. Make your opinions heard: Monterail and the Thunderbird email client development team are asking for your assistance to help improve the user interface in the redesign of the Thunderbird application. Be sure to take the survey.

IBM code grandmaster: what Java does next

Reports of Java’s death have been greatly exaggerated — said, well, pretty much every Java engineer that there is. The Java language and platform may have been (in some people’s view) somewhat unceremoniously shunted into a side ally by the self-proclaimed aggressive corporate acquisition strategists (their words, not ours) at Oracle… but Java still enjoys widespread adoption and, in some strains, growing use and development. Read more

Programming/Development: Git 2.16, Node.js, Testing/Bug Hunting

  • Git v2.16.0
    The latest feature release Git v2.16.0 is now available at the usual places. It is comprised of 509 non-merge commits since v2.15.0, contributed by 91 people, 26 of which are new faces.
  • Git 2.16 Released
    Git maintainer Junio Hamano has released version 2.16.0 of this distributed revision control system.
  • Announcing The Node.js Application Showcase
    The stats around Node.js are pretty staggering. There were 25 million downloads of Node.js in 2017, with over one million of them happening on a single day. And these stats are just the users. On the community side, the numbers are equally exceptional. What explains this immense popularity? What we hear over and over is that, because Node.js is JavaScript, anyone who knows JS can apply that knowledge to build powerful apps — every kind of app. Node.js empowers everyone from hobbyists to the largest enterprise teams to bring their dreams to life faster than ever before.
  • Google AutoML Cloud: Now Build Machine Learning Models Without Coding Experience
    Google has been offering pre-trained neural networks for a long time. To lower the barrier of entry and make the AI available to all the developers and businesses around, Google has now introduced Cloud AutoML. With the help of Cloud AutoML, businesses will be able to build machine learning models with the help of a drag-and-drop interface. In other words, if your company doesn’t have expert machine-learning programmers, Google is here to fulfill your needs.
  • Re-imagining beta testing in the ever-changing world of automation
    Fundamentally, beta testing is a test of a product performed by real users in the real environment. There are a number of names for this type of testing—user acceptance testing (UAT), customer acceptance testing (CAT), customer validation and field testing (common in Europe)—but the basic components are more or less the same. All involve user testing of the front-end user interface (UI) and the user experience (UX) to find and resolve potential issues. Testing happens across iterations in the software development lifecycle (SDLC), from when an idea transforms into a design, across the development phases, to after unit and integration testing.