Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

Web

Chrome users gloriously freed from obviously treacherous and unsafe uBlock Origin

Filed under
Google
Moz/FF
OSS
Web

Thank you, O Great Chrome Web Store, for saving us from the clearly hazardous, manifestly unscrupulous, overtly duplicitous uBlock Origin. Because, doubtlessly, this open-source ad-block extension by its very existence and nature could never "have a single purpose that is clear to users." I mean, it's an ad-blocker. Those are bad.
Really, this is an incredible own goal on Google's part. Although I won't resist the opportunity to rag on them, I also grudgingly admit that this is probably incompetence rather than malice and likely yet another instance of something falling through the cracks in Google's all-powerful, rarely examined automatic algorithms (though there is circumstantial evidence to the contrary). Having a human examine these choices costs money in engineering time, and frankly when the automated systems are misjudging something that will probably cost Google's ad business money as well, there's just no incentive to do anything about it. But it's a bad look, especially with how two-faced the policy on Manifest V3 has turned out to be and its effect on ad-blocker options for Chrome.

It is important to note that this block is for Chrome rather than Chromium-based browsers (like Edge, Opera, Brave, etc.). That said, Chrome is clearly the one-ton gorilla, and Google doesn't like you sideloading extensions. While Mozilla reviews extensions too, and there have been controversial rejections on their part, speaking as an add-on author of over a decade there is at least a human on the other end even if once in a while the human is a butthead. (A volunteer butthead, to be sure, but still a butthead.) Plus, you can sideload with a little work, even unsigned add-ons. So far I think they've reached a reasonable compromise between safety and user choice even if sometimes the efforts don't scale. On the other hand, Google clearly hasn't by any metric.

Read more

Digital Restrictions (DRM) Watch

Filed under
Security
Web
Legal
  • One Weird Law That Interferes With Security Research, Remix Culture, and Even Car Repair

    How can a single, ill-conceived law wreak havoc in so many ways? It prevents you from making remix videos. It blocks computer security research. It keeps those with print disabilities from reading ebooks. It makes it illegal to repair people's cars. It makes it harder to compete with tech companies by designing interoperable products. It's even been used in an attempt to block third-party ink cartridges for printers.

    It's hard to believe, but these are just some of the consequences of Section 1201 of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, which gives legal teeth to "access controls" (like DRM). Courts have mostly interpreted the law as abandoning the traditional limitations on copyright's scope, such as fair use, in favor of a strict regime that penalizes any bypassing of access controls (such as DRM) on a copyrighted work regardless of your noninfringing purpose, regardless of the fact that you own that copy of the work.  

  • One Weird Law That Interferes With Security Research, Remix Culture, and Even Car Repair
  • Spotify is Defective by Design

    I never used Spotify, since it contains DRM. Instead I still buy DRM-free CDs. Most of my audio collection is stored in free formats such as FLAC and Ogg Vorbis, or Red Book in the case of CDs, everything can be played by free players such as VLC or mpd.

    Spotify, which uses a central server, also spies on the listener. Everytime you listen a song, Spotify knows which song you have listened and when and where. By contrast free embedded operating systems such as Rockbox do not phone home. CDs can be baught anonymously and ripped using free software, there is no need for an internet commection.

Mastodon 3.0

Filed under
OSS
Web

It’s finally here! Mastodon 3.0 is live! The team has been hard at work on making sure that this release is one of our most user-friendly yet with some exciting new features! Here are just a few: [...]

Read more

SerenityOS: From zero to HTML in a year

Filed under
OS
Development
Web

The Serenity operating system turns 1 year old today. I'm counting from the first commit in the git repository, on October 10, 2018. Parts of the code had been around for a while before that, so this first commit was really about putting everything I was tinkering with into a shared repo.

Read more

Browsers: Opera 64 (Proprietary), Firefox and Chrome Benchmarks, New Firefox Features

Filed under
Google
Moz/FF
Web
  • Opera 64 is out: New tracker blocker promises you up to 20% faster page loads

    Browser maker Opera is releasing Opera 64 to the stable channel, offering users improved privacy protections from online tracking and updates to its Snapshot tool.

  • Firefox 69 + Chrome 77 On Windows 10 vs. Ubuntu / Clear Linux Benchmarks

    With running some fresh cross-OS benchmarks now that Ubuntu 19.10 is imminent followed by Ubuntu 19.10, a new Windows 10 update coming in the days ahead, and also the release of macOS 10.15, a lot of fun benchmarks are ahead. In today's article is a quick look at the Windows 10 vs. Ubuntu 19.10 vs. Clear Linux web browser performance for both Mozilla Firefox and Google Chrome.

  • Firefox 71 Landing Wayland DMA-BUF Textures Support

    Landing recently into the Mozilla code-base for the Firefox 71 release is DMA-BUF textures support on Wayland. When using Firefox with the OpenGL compositor enabled, the DMA-BUF EGL texture back-end is used that allows for sharing of buffers between the main/compositor process, working directly in GPU memory, and other benefits with this DMA-BUF usage. That code has been merged as another step forward for Firefox on Linux/Wayland.

Standards/Consortia: HTML and Media Format

Filed under
OSS
Web
  • Why much of the [WWW] is closed off to blind people

    Ultimately, those pushing for digital accessibility argue that businesses have no excuse for dragging their feet over it.

    "It's not hard to do, it should just be part of best practice, not an additional line item, just like making sure a website loads quickly is," says Laura Kalbag, a website designer and author of Accessibility for Everyone.

    "It basically just involves HTML coding, which even a blogger can do. If it is a huge website, it might take some time, but the work itself is not complicated."

    She adds it is a myth that making a website accessible makes it ugly, there is no correlation - you can still have snazzy images and graphics.

  • Neil Young’s Boring, Prophetic Message to Readers

    To Feel the Music is the story of Pono, which was Neil Young’s quixotic attempt to create and sell a new kind of portable music player and download service. Something that didn’t crush recorded sound into nasty little MP3s. If you’ve read either of his previous books, Waging Heavy Peace and Special Deluxe, you’ll be familiar with his preoccupation—his obsession, his foreboding—in this area. Young has long contended that with digitization, the conversion of music into data, has come a terrible shriveling of our sonic universe. You’ll also be familiar with his distinctively dazed, American Primitive prose style: “You have to give your body a chance to absorb [music] and recognize how good it feels to hear it. The human body is incredible. It’s great! It’s made by God/nature, depending on your beliefs.”

    MP3s, and I’ll try to be as scientific as I can here, are evil. They go against God/nature by chopping music into numbers. I’m with Young 100 percent on this. Beautiful flowing music, sliced to bits! And what is the devil’s price for having the entire Tangerine Dream back catalog at your fingertips? Why, shitty sound quality. The sound coming out of my Bluetooth speaker is no longer a dimension; it’s a narrow pulse, a serrated wave. Bass-blurts, ragged spikes of treble, a terrible crowdedness or crammedness in the midrange. My old-fart ears are squeaking in discomfort. The acoustic environment, like every other environment, is being degraded.

    But it doesn’t have to be, is Young’s point. We’ve all settled for this, because Steve Jobs said so. [...]

Standards/Consortia Leftovers

Filed under
Web
  • The Decentralized Web Is Coming

    The goal is to build a better, more decentralized web.

    "There are so many different possible ways of decentralizing the internet, and what's lacking is the legal right to interoperate and the legal support to stop dirty tricks from preventing you from exercising that legal right," says Cory Doctorow, a science fiction author and tech journalist who's been thinking and writing about the web since Tim Berners-Lee introduced it to the public in the early 1990s.

    Berners-Lee and other web pioneers intended for their creation to be decentralized and open-source. "The cyber-utopian view was not merely that seizing the means of information would make you free, but that failing to do so would put you in perpetual chains," says Doctorow.

    There are many theories about why the web became centralized. Doctorow largely blames the abuse of intellectual property law to defeat the decentralized "free software" movement championed by the programmer and activist Richard Stallman. Stallman helped create the popular open-source operating system Linux after freely modifying Unix, Bell Labs' proprietary system.

    But the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, passed in 1998, became an impediment to the open and permissionless approach to software development. The law was intended to prevent duplication of copryrighted works and was eventually applied to all software. Breaking "digital locks" to learn from, interact with, and improve upon the code of dominant web platforms became a federal crime. It's standard practice for today's tech companies to shield their proprietary code from would-be competitors by wielding the power of an increasingly expansive intellectual property regime.

  • Open source version of OPC UA spec for M2M launches

    OSADL announced OPC Foundation certification of its open source, C-developed “open62541” v1.0 implementation of the TSN-enabled OPC UA standard for M2M Ethernet communications. Kalycito has launched an open62541 starter kit that runs on a Linux-ready TQ gateway.

    You may have noticed an increase in products on LinuxGizmos that support Time-Sensitive Networking (TSN), which is built into some new networking SoCs such as NXP’s Cortex-A72 based LS1028A. More recently we’ve seen products that claim to support the OPC Foundation’s TSN-enabled Open Platform Communications Unified Architecture (OPC UA), such as Advantech’s new WISE-710 gateway.

  • HTTP 1, 2, and 3 in a Nutshell

Chromium/Mozilla Firefox: Chrome 78 Beta, Keygen Setback and iframes

Filed under
Google
Moz/FF
Web
  • Chrome 78 Beta: a new Houdini API, native file system access and more

    Unless otherwise noted, changes described below apply to the newest Chrome Beta channel release for Android, Chrome OS, Linux, macOS, and Windows. Find more information about the features listed here through the provided links or from the list on ChromeStatus.com. Chrome 78 is beta as of September 19, 2019.

  • Chrome 78 Hits Beta With Native File System API, Much Faster WebSockets

    Google on Friday released the Chrome 78 web-browser beta following last week's release of Chrome 77.

    Chrome 78 Beta is coming with a new Houdini API or more formally known as the CSS Properties and Values API Level 1, which lets developers register variables as fully custom CSS properties and can better handle animations and other use-cases.

  • Firefox 69 dropped support for <keygen>

    With version 69, firefox removed the support for the <keygen> feature to easily deploy TLS client certificates.
    It's kind of sad how used I've become to firefox giving me less and less reasons to use it...

  • [Mozilla] Restricting third-party iframe widgets using the sandbox attribute, referrer policy and feature policy

    Adding third-party embedded widgets on a website is a common but potentially dangerous practice. Thankfully, the web platform offers a few controls that can help mitigate the risks. While this post uses the example of an embedded SurveyMonkey survey, the principles can be used for all kinds of other widgets.

    Note that this is by no means an endorsement of SurveyMonkey's proprietary service. If you are looking for a survey product, you should consider a free and open source alternative like LimeSurvey.

The Vivaldi 2.8 Release (Proprietary)

Filed under
Software
Web
  • Vivaldi 2.8 Released with Unified Sync Support for Desktop and Android

    Vivaldi Technologies released today the Vivaldi 2.8 web browser for desktop platforms, including GNU/Linux, macOS, and Windows, an incremental update that adds significant improvements.
    With Vivaldi 2.8, Vivaldi Technologies continues to give desktop users full control over their browsing experience by adding various improvements across the board, starting with Vivaldi Sync, which now lets you sync bookmarks, passwords, history, notes, and autofill information across desktop and mobile.

    That's right, starting with Vivaldi 2.8, all your browsing data will be automatically synchronized between your installations of Vivaldi on desktop platforms, such as Linux, Mac, or Windows, and your mobile device where Vivaldi for Android is installed if you use Vivaldi Sync.

  • New Version Vivaldi Web Browser Has Been Released, Install in Ubuntu/Linux

    Vivaldi is the new web browser compare to other famous browsers, the initial release of Vivaldi was in January, 2015. It has improved a lot and evolved since the first release. Basically it is based on the open-source frameworks of Chromium, Blink and Google's V8 JavaScript engine and has a lot of great feature which I will table later. It is known to be the most customizable browser for power users, debuts features that make browsing more personal than ever before.
    Do we really need another browser? Since we already have a lot of them such as mostly used Firefox, Chrome, Opera and so on. The former CEO of Opera Software Jon Von Tetzchner didn't liked the direction of Opera Web Browser and said "Sadly, it is no longer serving its community of users and contributors - who helped build the browser in the first place." Then created a web browser which has to be fast, rich feature, highly flexible and puts the user first, so Vivaldi was born.

  • Vivaldi 2.8: Inspires new desktop and mobile experiences

    Today we are launching a new upgrade to our desktop version – Vivaldi 2.8.

    We’re always focused on giving you complete control over your desktop experience, while also making sure to protect your privacy and security online.

    Vivaldi on the desktop has been our foundation. And now – our inspiration. It continuously pushes us forward to deliver a browser that is made for you.

  • Privacy and the rise of the alternative search engine

    Over the summer we opened our blog to guest bloggers eager to share their perspectives on privacy. In this story, Finn Brownbill explains how we can put an end to tracking in search for the purpose of data collection.

Standards/Consortia: Wi-Fi, E-mail and Hindi

Filed under
Web
  • Wi-Fi Certified 6 Program Available for Products based on Broadcom, Cypress, Intel, Marvell, and Qualcomm 802.11ax Chips

    Last year the WiFi alliance introduces a new naming scheme for WiFi using numbers instead of IEEE standards so that WiFI 4 is 802.11n, WiFi 5 is 802.11ac, and WiFi 6 is the latest 802.11ax standard...

  • The Wi-Fi 6 Launches Officially for the Next Generation of Wi-Fi

    Wi-Fi Alliance announced today the availability of the Wi-Fi CERTIFIED 6 certification program for vendors to provide customers with the latest and greatest Wi-Fi experience.

    Unveiled last year in October, Wi-Fi 6 (also known as 802.11ax) launches officially today with up to 37 percent faster speeds than the previous Wi-Fi generation (802.11ac), increased bandwidth for greater performance with low latency, higher data rates for greater network capacity, as well as MU-MIMO (Multi-User Multiple Input Multiple Output) support for greater download performance on more devices at once.

  • Setting up a mail server with OpenSMTPD, Dovecot and Rspamd

    I’ll say it again:

    I don’t think that either one of the Big Mailer Corps are are evil or bad, I use some of their services on a daily basis, and most of the people operating them are genuinely seeking the greater good… however they have grown too big and there needs to be a balance in power because who knows how they’ll evolve in the next ten years, who knows how the politics of their home country will evolve in the next ten years, and recent news doesn’t paint them as heading in the right direction.

    I’ll conclude by recommanding that you see this excellent presentation by Bert Hubert (@PowerDNS_Bert) from PowerDNS, about how a similar problem is starting to happen with DNS and the privacy and tracking concerns that arise from this. Many, many, many key points are also valid for mail services.

  • #StopHindilmposition: Indian tweeps respond to Amit Shah's 'Hindi as national language' comment

    But, Twitter India doesn't agree. Why? India does not have a national language. Part XVII of the Indian Constitution designates Hindi as the 'official language' of the Union. And, English is used in official purposes such as parliamentary proceedings, judiciary, communications between the Central Government and a State Government. States within India have the liberty and powers to specify their own official language(s) through legislation. In addition to the official languages, the constitution recognises 22 regional languages, which includes Hindi but not English, as scheduled languages. The number of native Hindi speakers is about 25% of the total Indian population;

    The number of native Hindi speakers is only about 25 per cent of the total Indian population and 43 per cent of India’s population use Hindi as their first language. In some states, especially in the southern regions, Hindi is not used at all.

  • Hindi spoken most, can unite country: Amit Shah

    According to the Official Languages Act, 1963, Hindi and English are the official languages for the Union government and Parliament.

    A total of 22 languages of the country are recognised under the Eight Schedule of the Constitution.

Syndicate content

More in Tux Machines

New Debian Developers and Maintainers (November and December 2019)

The following contributors got their Debian Developer accounts in the last two months: Louis-Philippe Véronneau (pollo) Olek Wojnar (olek) Sven Eckelmann (ecsv) Utkarsh Gupta (utkarsh) Robert Haist (rha) The following contributors were added as Debian Maintainers in the last two months: Denis Danilov Joachim Falk Thomas Perret Richard Laager Congratulations! Read more

Python Programming

  • Prettier logging with Rich

    There are a few things going on here. Important fields are rendered in their own column to make it easier to scan. To reduce visual clutter, the time field is only rendered if it changes and I've set the date format to time only, which is fine for local development (if you forget what day it is you need a vacation). The message column has some syntax highlighting applied to it, tuned for web development, but more importantly it is word-wrapped. Finally there is a column for the python file and line that called the log method. This would be my ideal logging for web-development, your mileage may vary and you may want to tune it for your domain.

  • Release of Relatorio 0.9.1

    We are glad to announce the release of Relatorio version 0.9.1. Relatorio is a templating library mainly for OpenDocument using also OpenDocument as source format.

  • How to write a very simple calculator in Python as a complete beginner programmer

    As I progress with my journey as a computer coder, I have realized that for one to master the art of writing scripts and applications, hours of practice matter more than months of study being spent on How To Program books. Reading theory about computer programming matters, but it does not make one a code writer. Based on such conclusion, I have decided to share real world scenarios materialized in computer code, mostly Python. Through this article you're going to learn how to put in practice basic concepts in Python with the main purpose of pushing your skills to the next level as a doer, instead of just a thinker. Although once finished you will end up with a simple calculator which supports basic maths, at least you will know how to properly make use of builtin utilities such as input, def statements and the while True loop.

  • How to create image quotes from scratch with nider open source python package

    Being a blogger, I have needs on tools which can ease my job as a content producer. Having knowledge on the Python programming language I have discovered an open source package which fits my needs when it comes to generating images with text. As an 'advanced' terminal user, I truly like automating stuff on the console. Before launching a fresh command prompt on your own computer, make sure you meet the requirements shown below in order to follow me through the rest of this blog post.

  • An open source alternative to Internet Download Manager written in Python, pyIDM

    Most of the computer geeks are familiar with the Internet Download Manager tool. Although it is one of the best among download managers; being a soldier of open source software, I decided to share pyIDM as an alternative for anyone who is passionate about computer programming. According to the official documentation shared on the Github platform, pyIDM supports multi-connections at a high speed due to its download engine which relies entirely on LibCurl.

KeePassXC 2.5.3 and Some Tips

  • KeePassXC 2.5.3

    KeePassXC is a community fork of KeePassX, a native cross-platform port of KeePass Password Safe, with the goal to extend and improve it with new features and bugfixes to provide a feature-rich, fully cross-platform and modern open-source password manager. KeePassXC currently uses the KeePass 2.x (.kdbx) password database format as its native file format in versions 3.1 and 4. Database files in version 2 can be opened, but will be upgraded to a newer format. KeePass 1.x (.kdb) databases can be imported into a .kdbx file, but this process is one-way.

  • How to manage your entire passwords with KeePassX, single master key for all of them

    Having many accounts on different social media networks, I have to keep trace of different usernames and passwords. Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter and chat applications; different login credentials for each one of them. Not to mention the local accounts. Due to the struggle that comes with remembering all usernames and passwords, and of course due to loss of many important accounts in the past, I have decided to store my entire login credentials in a database which can be accessed through a single master key.

  • How to fully take control of KeePassX through the command line with pykeepass open source python package

    Having needs on secure personal data management, KeePassX is the software which I have chosen to solve my own problem. Being open source, many developers have written their own libraries from scratch to fully interact with KeePassX from the command line. After many hours of research on Github, and a lot of tests on my local environment, pykeepass ended in my toolset. Fully open source and free of charge, this python tool supports interaction with the entire features being integrated on KeePassX; directly from the command line.

Red Hat and IBM: Stronger Now?

  • OpenShift: Working with Internal Docker Registry

    OpenShift provides an internal container image registry that can be deployed in an OpenShift environment to locally manage images.

  • IBM’s Quarterly Sales Finally Rose—But Not By Much

    IBM’s shares rose by around 5% on January 21 after it said its fourth-quarter revenues had increased by 0.1%, to $21.8 billion, after five quarters in a row of year-over-year sales declines. Big Blue’s fortunes were boosted by a new mainframe product line and revenues from open-source software giant Red Hat, which it acquired in July 2019 for around $34 billion. Adjusted net income for the quarter fell about 5%, to $4.2 billion, while the company reported earnings per share of $4.71 compared with analysts’ consensus estimates of $4.69. IBM saw its full-year 2019 revenue fall 3.1%, to $77.1 billion, and its net income drop by 10%, to $11.4 billion.

  • Six months after IBM spent $34 billion to acquire an open source software company, IBM's Q4 results showed that 'Red Hat goodness is kicking in'
  • IBM Sales Expected to Dip Despite Red Hat Purchase: What to Watch

    International Business Machines Corp. is expected to report fourth-quarter earnings after the market closes Tuesday. The technology giant may be heading for its sixth successive quarter of year-over-year revenue decline—but has been trying to reverse that slide, in part, through the $33 billion purchase of open source software giant Red Hat Inc.

  • IBM Earnings Hint at Signs of Turnaround

    International Business Machines Corp. reported a slight increase in quarterly revenue, ending a streak of falling sales and providing a first indication Chief Executive Ginni Rometty’s roughly $33 billion acquisition of open-source software giant Red Hat may help turn around Big Blue’s fortunes.

  • IBM Open Sources SysFlow Monitoring Platform

    Fred Araujo, a research scientist in the Cognitive Cybersecurity Intelligence Group at IBM Research, said IBM developed lightweight SysFlow agent software and monitoring tools as a way to provide more context around the telemetry data being collected while simultaneously reducing the amount of data that needs to be stored. SysFlow encodes a representation of system activities into a compact format that records how applications interact with their environment, Araujo said, noting that level of context provides deeper visibility in everything from container workloads to cybersecurity forensics. However, unlike existing monitoring platforms, SysFlow doesn’t require IT organizations to collect a massive amount of data to achieve that goal—it is intended to provide for a superset of the NetFlow framework used to analyze network traffic patterns to capture system events, he said. Araujo noted IBM doesn’t envision SysFlow eliminating the need for legacy log analytics platforms, as they provide a way to analyze log data. However, SysFlow does enable IT organizations to apply analytics via a graph-like visualization to surface patterns that goes beyond a comparative simple rules-based approach, said Araujo. For example, SysFlow’s approach will make it easier to uncover the relationship between various events that make up a cybersecurity attack and subsequently to identify what countermeasures to employ to create the appropriate kill chain response. It also should substantially reduce the amount of fatigue cybersecurity teams experience from chasing down false-positive alerts, he said.

  • Open source principles key to digital transformation

    The book outlines how open source principles can be used to build a better business by powering the transformation of not only technology, but also culture and business practices. However, there is no single understanding of exactly what digital transformation is. Most people recognise that the world has changed with digital devices and services connecting everything and everyone, and customers have more choice than ever before. As a result, every industry faces disruption and businesses have to change – transform – if they are to meet new consumer demands and stay ahead of the competition.

  • Fedora program update: 2020-04

    Here’s your report of what has happened in Fedora this week. I will not hold office hours next week due to travel, but if you’ll be at FOSDEM, you can catch me in person.