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Internet Wars: Microsoft EEE Against Mozilla's Rust, Moving From Chrome to Mozilla Firefox, Cake PR and Microsoft Still Playing Dirty

Filed under
Google
Microsoft
Moz/FF
Web
  • Developers love Rust programming language: Here's why

    In fact, Rust has been voted the most-loved language for the past four years in Stack Overflow's annual developer surveys, even though 97% of respondents haven't used it. So how has it become the most-loved programming language?

    "The short answer is that Rust solves pain points present in many other languages, providing a solid step forward with a limited number of downsides," explains Jake Goulding on Stack Overflow's blog.

    [...]

    Mozilla Research describes Rust as a "systems programming language that focuses on speed, memory safety, and parallelism".

    It's often seen as an alternative to systems programming languages like C and C++ that developers use to create game engines, operating systems, file systems, browser components, and VR simulation engines. Mozilla, which continues to sponsor the project, says programmers can use Rust to make software that's less prone to bugs and attacks.

  • I finally switched from Chrome to Mozilla Firefox — and you should too

    I have been in an on-and-off relationship with Mozilla Firefox for the past five years. Every time I’d get ecstatic over a major new Firefox update — hoping to, at long last, break free from the hegemony of Google Chrome — my hopes would be crushed as soon as I began browsing the web like I normally do.

    Firefox’s performance would fall noticeably short and struggle to keep up with my workflow, sending me scurrying back to Google Chrome after a few minutes of poking around. No matter how compelling the rest of Mozilla’s offerings were, they could never convince me to hit that “Yes” button whenever Firefox asked whether I’d like to set it as my default browser. Catching up to Chrome almost started to seem like a far-fetched goal for Firefox — until recently.

    [...]

    Today, in addition to being fast, Firefox is resource-efficient, unlike most of its peers. I don’t have to think twice before firing up yet another tab. It’s rare that I’m forced to close an existing tab to make room for a new one. On Firefox, my 2015 MacBook Pro’s fans don’t blast past my noise-canceling headphones, which happened fairly regularly on Chrome as it pushed my laptop’s fans to their helicopter-like limits to keep things running.

    This rare balance of efficiency and performance is the result of the countless under-the-hood upgrades Firefox has rolled out in the last couple of years. One of the recent major performance updates arrived in May when Mozilla natively integrated a handful of clever optimizations for which users previously had to rely on third-party extensions.

  • Passive aggressive baking at its finest

    Cakes are a long standing weapon in the browser wars. Whenever a major browser hits a new milestone or makes an important release, cakes are rapidly exchanged.

  • Microsoft will never win the search engine wars by forcing people to use Bing

    Bing is known as the default search engine for Windows, and not much else. Microsoft’s solution? To forcibly install a Bing search extension in Chrome for Office 365 ProPlus users.

    The company says that this is designed for enterprise and business users to find relevant workplace information directly from the browser address bar, but we all know Microsoft is desperate to get more people using its search engine. It sounds harmless, but here’s why forcing people to use Bing won’t help Microsoft in the long run.

    [...]

    Fast forward to today, Bing still has a few problems that need to be addressed, and where Microsoft should put some extra attention towards, instead of forcing Bing down people’s throats. These include both search relevance and design — the two core areas of any search engine.

    First of all, there is a search relevance. In our testing, searching for Digital Trends on Google and Bing provide two different results. On Bing, we get a look at some older Digital Trends articles, which at the time of this writing, were older stories from 4, 6, and 3 hours ago. Compared that to Google, and articles are more relevant pulled from a most recent time frame.

Content Management: Alfresco, Document Management Software and Drupal 8.8.0

Filed under
OSS
Drupal
Web
  • Alfresco Helps George Eliot Hospital NHS Trust Begin Its Paperless Journey

    Alfresco Software, an open source content, process and governance software company, has announced the successful implementation of its Digital Business Platform by George Eliot Hospital NHS Trust to enable paperless processes. By digitising clinical and non-clinical forms, the Trust is able to make creation and changes quicker and easier, as well as give patients more control over their health and well-being. After just four months, patients and staff are seeing such a positive difference that there are plans to expand the usage of the Alfresco Digital Business Platform to digitise more processes.

  • Should You Use Open-Source Document Management Software?

    A document management system (DMS) can play an integral role in the organization and efficiency of your business. Companies that want a paperless office or a streamlined way to store and access digital documents turn to document management software. The most useful systems allow you to perform a variety of tasks like scan paper documents, control file versions, organize various folders, set user permissions and collaborate with other team members.

    Not all applications are created equal; you must, therefore, choose a DMS that serves your needs and integrates with your other business platforms. Business owners and developers who want added flexibility and customization often turn to open-source DMS solutions.

  • Drupal 8.8.0 is available

    The last normal feature release of Drupal 8 includes a stable Media Library as well as several improvements to workspaces and migrations. The new experimental Claro administration theme brings a fresh look to site management. This is also the first release to come with native Composer support.

  • Drupal 8.8.0 Released, Acquia Acquires AgilOne and More Open Source CMS News

    Drupal 8.8.0 — the last normal feature release of Drupal 8 — is now available for download. Some of the updates in this release include:

11 Best Web Browsers I Discovered for Linux in 2020

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Web

Web Browser is a software that provides an interface to surf the web. With an introduction in around 1991, there development and advancement have advanced many folds till the current stage which we see today.

Earlier there used to be mostly text-based sites with few having images and graphical content, hence only text-based browsers sufficed with some of the early browsers being: Lynx, Netscape, and Opera.

But, with the advancement of technology to support audio, video, images and even flash content, browsers also need to be that advanced to support such content. This has pushed the advancement of browsers to what we see today.

A modern browser requires the support of many software which include: web browser engines like Geeko, Trident, WebKit, KHTML, etc, Rendering engine to render the web site content and display in a proper format.

Linux being an open-source community gives freedom to developers across the globe to experiment with features they expect from an ideal browser.

Read more

Tails 4.2.2 is out

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Security
Web
Debian

This release is an emergency release to fix a critical security vulnerability in Tor Browser.

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Mozilla on CRLite

Filed under
Moz/FF
Web
  • Introducing CRLite: All of the Web PKI’s revocations, compressed

    CRLite is a technology proposed by a group of researchers at the IEEE Symposium on Security and Privacy 2017 that compresses revocation information so effectively that 300 megabytes of revocation data can become 1 megabyte. It accomplishes this by combining Certificate Transparency data and Internet scan results with cascading Bloom filters, building a data structure that is reliable, easy to verify, and easy to update.

    Since December, Firefox Nightly has been shipping with with CRLite, collecting telemetry on its effectiveness and speed. As can be imagined, replacing a network round-trip with local lookups makes for a substantial performance improvement. Mozilla currently updates the CRLite dataset four times per day, although not all updates are currently delivered to clients.

  • The End-to-End Design of CRLite

    CRLite is a technology to efficiently compress revocation information for the whole Web PKI into a format easily delivered to Web users. It addresses the performance and privacy pitfalls of the Online Certificate Status Protocol (OCSP) while avoiding a need for some administrative decisions on the relative value of one revocation versus another. For details on the background of CRLite, see our first post, Introducing CRLite: All of the Web PKI’s revocations, compressed.

    To discuss CRLite’s design, let’s first discuss the input data, and from that we can discuss how the system is made reliable.

Opera 66 Makes it Easier for Users to Reopen Closed Tabs and Access Add-Ons

Filed under
Software
Web

Opera Software kicked off 2020 with a new stable release of its cross-platform, Chromium-based Opera web browser for GNU/Linux, macOS, and Windows platforms.

Opera 66 has been released earlier this week as the latest and greatest version of this Chromium-based web browser, adding various enhancements to the user interface to make it easier for users to access sidebar extensions, as well as to help them more quickly reopen tabs that were closed by accident.

"We have an easy solution for this, one that doesn’t require going to the full history section. When you click the clock icon that takes you to history, your browser will ask if you would like to reopen your recently closed tabs. If you click yes, they will come back as if you had never closed them in the first place," said Opera Software's Joanna Czajka.

Read more

5 best Google Chrome alternatives on Linux

Filed under
Software
Web

Brave is an open-source, privacy-focused web browser for Mac, Linux, Windows, iOS, and Android. It automatically blocks advertisements and trackers out of the box and replaces them with “Brave Ad Replacement,” a program that lets users directly contribute to their favorite websites.

The Brave browser is the brain-child of former Firefox CEO Brendan Eich and Firefox CTO Brian Bondy. Under the hood, it uses Chromium, ensuring that users get privacy as well as access to their favorite Google services, and extensions. If you’re a privacy geek, ditch Chrome and check out Brave!

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App Highlight: Falkon Open Source Web Browser from KDE

Filed under
KDE
OSS
Web

First thing first, Falkon is not a new web browser. It has been in development since 2010 but it was known as Qupzilla.

In 2017, QupZilla moved under KDE umbrella and changed its name to Falkon. Being under KDE umbrella means that project is actively maintained following KDE standards.

It uses the QtWebEngine rendering engine – which is a striped down version of Chromium core.

In this article, I shall take a closer look at what it offers and how it’s different than other dominant web browsers on Linux out there.

Read more

Chrome 80 Beta, Mozilla Localisation and Firefox UX on 'Smart' Microphones

Filed under
Google
Moz/FF
Web
  • Chrome 80, Content Indexing, ES Modules and More

    Unless otherwise noted, changes described below apply to the newest Chrome beta channel release for Android, Chrome OS, Linux, macOS, and Windows. Learn more about the features listed here through the provided links or from the list on ChromeStatus.com. Chrome 80 is beta as of December 19, 2019.

  • Chrome 80 Beta Brings SVG Favicons, Further FTP Support Deprecation

    Following last week's release of Chrome 79, the Chrome 80 web browser has been promoted to beta,

  • Mozilla Localization (L10N): L10n Report: December Edition

    Firefox 72 is currently in Beta. The deadline to ship localization changes in this version is approaching fast, and will be on December 24th. For the next version, the deadline will be on January 28th.

  • Firefox UX: How people really, really use smart speakers [Ed: There's no such thing as "Smart speakers". They're listening devices or microphones connected to someone else in the wiretapping sense.]

    More and more people are using smart speakers everyday. But how are they really using them? Tawfiq Ammari, a doctoral candidate at the University of Michigan, in conjunction with researchers at Mozilla and Yahoo, published a paper which sheds some light on the question. To do this, he gathered surveys and user logs from 170 Amazon Alexa and Google Home users, and interviewed another 19 users, to analyze their daily use of voice assistants.

    Users of both Google Home and Alexa devices can access a log showing all the interactions they’ve had with their device. Our 170 users gave us a copy of this log after removing any personal information, which meant we could understand what people were really using their devices for, rather than just what they remembered using their devices for when asked later. Together, these logs contained around 259,164 commands.

    We collected 193,665 commands on Amazon Alexa which were issued between May 2015 and August 2017, a period of 851 days. On average, the datasets for our 82 Amazon Alexa users span 210 days. On the days when they used their VA, Alexa users issued, on average,18.2 commands per day. We collected 65,499 commands on Google Home between September 2016 and July 2017, a period of 293 days. On average, the datasets for each of the 88 Google Home users spans 110 days. On days when they used their VA,Google Home users issued, on average, 23.2 commands per day with a median of 10.0 commands per day.

    For both Amazon Alexa and Google Home, the top three command categories were listening to music, hands-free search, and controlling IoT devices. The most prevalent command for Amazon Alexa was listening to music, while Google Home was used most for hands-free search. We also found a lot of items in the logs reflecting that both devices didn’t often understand queries, or mis-heard other conversation as commands — that’s 17% in the case of Google Home and 11% in the case of Alexa, although those aren’t quite comparable because of the way that each device logs errors.

    People used their smart speakers for all sorts of searches. For example, some of our respondents use VAs to convert measurement units while cooking. Others used their VAs to look up trivia with friends. Users also searched for an artist who sang a particular song, or looked for a music album under a specific genre (e.g., classical music).

Tails 4.1.1 is out

Filed under
Security
Web
Debian

This release fixes a problem when starting Tails 4.1 on some Mac computers.

If Tails 4.1 starts successfully on your computer, you do not have to upgrade to Tails 4.1.1.

Read more

Also: Private.sh release extensions for Google Chrome and Firefox

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More in Tux Machines

Qt 5.14.1 Released

I am happy to announce we have released Qt 5.14.1 today. As a patch release, Qt 5.14.1 does not add any new functionality but provides many bug fixes and other improvements. Compared to Qt 5.14.0, the new Qt 5.14.1 contains around 220 bug fixes including security issue fixes for both Qt (CVE-2020-0570) and 3rd party components (CVE-2019-19244, CVE-2019-19603, CVE-2019-19242, CVE-2019-19645, CVE-2019-19646 & CVE-2019-19880). Also in QtWebEngine there are many CVE fixes from Chromium. For details of the most important changes, please check the Change files of Qt 5.14.1. Read more Also: Qt 5.14.1 Released With 200+ Bug Fixes, Including Security Fixes

5 Popular Free and Open Source Retail POS Software

For small or startup businesses on a limited budget, starting with a free retail point of sale (POS) software can be cost effective and cover most of your basic business needs. To help you decide which POS system is most suited to your retail business, we’ve compiled a list of free and open-source retail POS software and highlighted their key features. The following are presented in alphabetical order and are based on rankings from search results on Google the week of December 16-20, 2019. Read more

Linux on laptops: Ubuntu 19.10 on the HP Dragonfly Elite G1

If you're looking for the easiest possible experience in procuring a Linux laptop, you just can't argue with an OEM experience like Dell's XPS 13 Developer Edition, or System76's Galago Pro. But it's nice having the option to retrofit Linux onto a laptop you just plain like rather than being limited to the ones sold with it—and if you like the Dragonfly Elite, it makes a great Linux laptop. We didn't face any significant hurdles getting Ubuntu 19.10 installed (we were completely done in well under ten minutes), and the laptop was completely and immediately functional, without the need to mess around with anything. The Dragonfly Elite is a great performer. Everything from booting to opening applications to running them felt quick and crisp; for more detail, refer to Valentina's original review. The important thing from our perspective is that changing operating systems didn't slow the system down or make anything get perceptibly clunky—it's still a well-behaved eighth generation i7 system with 16GB of RAM and fast solid state storage, and it behaves just as you'd expect such a system to. The battery life is also excellent, with a solid six to seven hours of full-screen, online 720P YouTube watching at full screen brightness. If you're watching offline media and willing to drop the screen brightness down to 50%, you could almost certainly watch movies on the Dragonfly Elite for a full ten-hour plane ride across the Atlantic. Read more

How SUSE builds its Enterprise Linux distribution – PART 1

In 2020, one might think that Operating Systems in general are not interesting any more, possibly because some have an interest on shifting the attention to an “upper layer”, like Cloud or Containers. But even if the OS lost it’s former attraction, somehow you (or someone else) still needs a software system that manages computer hardware, software resources and provides services to applications and users. Obviously an OS is essential but it needs everything around it to serve an higher purpose than just a basic interface between human and hardware. As of now with the increased pace of new technologies and changes to the “upper layer”, a modern Operating System needs to adapt, support new hardware, new software, and needs. But also be stable, resilient and secure to properly host the “upper layer”. But before we discuss modern days, let’s have a look back in the past. [...] SUSE is a long lasting player in the GNU/Linux Operating Systems, as you might know SUSE once stood for Software-und System-Entwicklung (Software and Systems Development), and was created in 1992 doing a lot of translation, documentation and hacking (on technologies but not subverting computer security). The same year we were distributing the first comprehensive Linux Distribution (more than just Linux Kernel and GNU tools), called Softlanding Linux System (SLS), one of the earliest Linux Distributions at large. Soon we switched our focus from SLS to Slackware (initially based on SLS), by translating in German and supporting this new Linux Distribution. And thanks to this effort and experience, we were able to release S.u.S.E Linux 1.0 based on Slackware in 1994. This were really an exciting time for the Linux community, it was basically the beginning and everything rapidly changed or grew, new projects arise, new people started to contribute, in short a lot of things were in flux. Just two years after S.u.S.E Linux 1.0, in 1996, we have released SUSE Linux 4.2 our very first true SUSE distribution! which was not based on Slackware but on Jurix. Yet another big milestone was achieved in 2000, when we brought the first Enterprise Linux Distribution ever, with SUSE Linux Enterprise Server (for IBM S/390)! Read more