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Google

Google open sources the code that powers its domain registry

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Google
OSS

Google today released Nomulus, the Java-based registry platform that powers Google’s own .google and .foo top level domains (TLDs).

Google says it started working on the technology behind Nomulus after the company applied to operate a number of generic TLDs itself back in 2012. Until then, domain names were mostly restricted to the .com’s, .net’s and various country-level TLDs like .de and .uk. Once the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) decided to open TLDs up to so-called generic TLD’s like .app, .blog and .guru, Google jumped into the fray and applied for .google and a number of other TLDs.

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Google Pixel review: Bland, pricey, but still the best Android phone

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Google
Reviews

Welcome to the age of Google Hardware. Apparently tired of letting third-party Android OEMs serve as the stewards of Android handsets, Google has become a hardware company. (Again).

Earlier this year Google, launched a hardware division with former Motorola President Rick Osterloh at the helm. With the high-ranking title of "Senior Vice President," Osterloh doesn't oversee a side project—his group is on even footing with Android, Search, YouTube, and Ads. The hardware group is so powerful inside Google that it was able to merge Nexus, Pixel, Chromecast, OnHub, ATAP, and Glass into a single business unit. The group's coming out party was October 4, 2016, where it announced Google Home, Google Wifi, a 4K Chromecast, the Daydream VR headset, and the pair of phones we're looking at today: the Google Pixel and Google Pixel XL.

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GNU/Linux Desktop

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GNU
Linux
Google
Gaming
  • Samsung’s new Chromebook Pro comes with an S Pen

    OK, it’s no longer called an S Pen, but the Samsung Chromebook Pro has a PEN. All all caps pen, so you know it’s a big deal, even if it does look exactly like an S Pen pulled from the cold dead fingers of the Galaxy Note 7 (too soon?). All jokes aside, this new Chromebook from Samsung actually looks really nice, and it can be picked up right now on Samsung Korea’s website.

  • Steam Finds Win 10 Losing Players, Win 7 and Linux Gaming Rising

    Does Linux hold a chance to compete with Windows as a gaming operating system? Well, not exactly. Despite Steam’s work on SteamOS, it doesn’t seem like Linux is about to become a major gaming operating system any time soon. But it’s definitely growing, and Steam users understand its benefits. Perhaps by this time next year, Mac will be going head-to-head with Linux players in the Steam Hardware Survey.

Chrome 54 for GNU/Linux and Android

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Google
Software

Google Rights and Wrongs

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Google
  • Google’s Open-Source Noto Font Covers All Languages
  • Google Noto is an open source font family for more than 800 languages
  • Google releases open source font Noto to eliminate the tofu problem

    You may not have heard of the tofu problem, but you have almost certainly experienced it. If you visit a website or open a document that can't display a particular character, you'll see a white box symbol resembling a cube of tofu. Now Google has a solution.

    The Noto font project (it's a mashup of 'NO more TOfu') has been something of a labor of love, taking five years to reach its conclusion. But the result is an open source Noto font family which Google says includes "every symbol in the Unicode standard, covering more than 800 languages and 110,000 characters".

    Talking about the new font family, Google says: "The Noto project started as a necessity for Google's Android and ChromeOS operating systems. When we began, we did not realize the enormity of the challenge. It required design and technical testing in hundreds of languages, and expertise from specialists in specific scripts. In Arabic, for example, each character has four glyphs (i.e., shapes a character can take) that change depending on the text that comes after it. In Indic languages, glyphs may be reordered or even split into two depending on the surrounding text".

  • More software engineers over age 40 may join a lawsuit against Google

    Google suffered a setback in an age discrimination suit this week. A judge ruled that other software engineers over age 40 who interviewed with the company but didn't get hired can step forward and join the lawsuit.

    The suit was brought by two job applicants, both over the age of 40, who interviewed but weren't offered jobs.

    Specifically, the judge has approved turning the suit into a "collective action" meaning that people who "interviewed in person with Google for a software engineer, site reliability engineer, or systems engineer position when they were 40 years old or older, and received notice on or after August 28, 2014, that they were refused employment, will have an opportunity to join in the collective action against Google," the ruling says.

Google's open source Noto: Free font covers 800 languages, including dead ones

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Google
OSS

Google has released a new open-source font called Noto, which supports 800 languages and covers 110 writing systems.

Short for 'No more Tofu', the name of the new typeface is a nod to what people call the default white boxes that appear when a computer doesn't understand a character on a website.

"One of the goals of the project was to support every language and every character, so one of the things we wanted to do was make sure there's no tofu for all our users," said Bob Jung, an director of internationalization at Google.

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Google releases open source 'Cartographer'

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Google
OSS

Machine learning and vision are essential technologies for the advancement of robotics. When sensors come together, they can enable a computer or robot to collect data and images in real-time.

A good example of this technology in real-world use is the latest Roomba vacuums. As the robot cleans your dirty floor, it is using sensors combined with a camera to map your home. Today, Google releases Cartographer -- an open source project that developers can use for many things, such as robots and self-driving cars.

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Google may unveil merged Android and Chrome OS, dubbed Andromeda, at event

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Android
Google

If you thought Google’s October 4 event — where the firm is rumored to launch two smartphones, Google Home, Daydream VR, Chromecast Ultra, and Wi-Fi Routers — wasn’t packed enough, think again. It has been a long time coming, but Google may finally offer a peak at Andromeda, an operating system that sees the merger of Android and Chrome OS.

Andromeda is the code name for the long-rumored merger, and Android Police says it have been sitting on a rumor that Google may demo the OS in October. What made the company share it now? A tweet from Hiroshi Lockheimer, senior vice president of Android, Chrome OS, and Google Play at Google.

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Chrome OS/Android Leftovers

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Android
Google
  • Chrome OS gets cryptographically verified enterprise device management

    Companies will now be able to cryptographically validate the identity of Chrome OS devices connecting to their networks and verify that those devices conform to their security policies.

    On Thursday, Google announced a new feature and administration API called Verified Access. The API relies on digital certificates stored in the hardware-based Trusted Platform Modules (TPMs) present in every Chrome OS device to certify that the security state of those devices has not been altered.

    Many organizations have access controls in place to ensure that only authorized users are allowed to access sensitive resources and they do so from enterprise-managed devices conforming to their security policies.

    Most of these checks are currently performed on devices using heuristic methods, but the results can be faked if the devices' OSes are compromised. With Verified Access, Google plans to make it impossible to fake those results in Chromebooks.

  • Samsung's high-end Android clamshell appears in live images

    Earlier this month, the Samsung Galaxy Folder 2 was unveiled. This is the sequel to the manufacturer's entry-level Android flavored clamshell. Samsung is apparently prepping another Android powered clamshell for power users who want a smartphone with this form factor. Today, live images of the SM-W2017 have surfaced. The phone carries the code name 'Veyron."

    The device carries a 4.2-inch screen with a 1080 x 1920 resolution. Driving the phone is a Snapdragon 820 chipset, which features a quad-core CPU and the Adreno 530 GPU. 4GB of RAM is inside along with 64GB of native storage. A 12MP rear-facing camera offers PDAF laser focusing, and the 5MP front-facing camera snaps selfies and handles video chats. Keeping the lights on is a 2000mAh battery.

  • OpenWeatherMapProvider for CyanogenMod 13
  • Sony Xperia C4 Now Getting Android 6.0 Marshmallow Update
  • Chrome beta for Android plays web videos in the background
  • Note 7 owner sues Samsung, saying phone exploded in his pocket
  • President of Samsung US apologizes for Note7 recall
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More in Tux Machines

Manjaro-Arm is Shutting Down

It is with deep regret that we are announcing that the Manjaro-Arm team is shutting down. I started this project a little over a year ago with no intent to become the sole maintainer. Read more

KDE and Qt

  • The Novelty of KDE Neon
    The good folks at KDE managed to engage a market of Linux desktop users underserved by other distribution models. Or, maybe it’s just me. KDE has a long history in the desktop ecosystem. It was the first Linux desktop I was exposed to back in 2006. Back then, it was on OpenSUSE and it was clean and functional. For some reason after that, installing KDE had never really appealed to me. I’ve tested it out briefly when poking around at what the OpenSUSE guys were doing and I’ve run Kubuntu for brief snippets. For years, I’ve been trying to find out what type of desktop user I am and which distro fits my needs.
  • Tracking KDE Frameworks and Qt
    The KDE-FreeBSD team bumped Qt to 5.7.1 and KDE Frameworks to 5.31.0 in official ports last week, so we’re fairly up-to-date in that department. On FreeBSD, we still fully support Qt4 next to Qt5, so some of the delay in getting this stuff in is due to some shuffling of install locations. In particular, we’ve added qt-chooser in this round of updates, so that qmake is qmake — and no longer qmake-qt4 or some other suffixed binary. We use qt-chooser to switch out one or the other. Checking that this doesn’t break anything else — or at least making sure that everything still compiles — is what took the most time this round of updates.
  • Simple Menu Launcher for KDE Plasma 5.9
    Following "United" theme, there is also "Simple Menu" launcher for KDE Plasma 5.9. It's minimal, a smaller form of full screen menu; it's also clean, showing all applications at once. Honestly, it's UI is similar to Pantheon Menu in elementary OS but including categories. If you like horizontal-oriented menu, Simple Menu is suitable for you. It's available to install from KDE Store. Thanks to Sho for creating Simple Menu.
  • A Simple KDE Twitter Plasmoid
    This KDE Twitter Plasmoids offers a simpler alternative to a desktop Linux twitter app like Choqok. See tweets, send tweets, and check mentions.
  • Telegram desktop client for flatpak #2
    Some time ago I posted a blog post about how I packed telegram desktop client for flatpak. I’ve been updating it since then in some reasonable intervals as I don’t have time to update it more often and mostly because the telegram client’s build system breaks my build quite oftenly. Recently I discovered that someone managed to patch telegram to use system Qt libraries instead of building own patched Qt and building linking it statically. After some time I managed to adjust those patches and make them work with my build which allows me to use Qt from KDE runtimes. Here are new instructions how to get this work:
  • Building the latest greatest for Android AArch64 (with Vulkan teaser)
    Let’s say you got a 64-bit ARM device running Android. For instance, the Tegra X1-based NVIDIA Shield TV. Now, let’s say you are also interested in the latest greatest content from the dev branch, for example to try out some upcoming Vulkan enablers from here and here, and want to see all this running on the big screen with Android TV. How do we get Qt, or at least the basic modules like QtGui, QtQuick, etc. up and running on there?
  • Qt Quick WebGL Streaming
    WebGL Streaming is optimized for Qt Quick and allows you to run remote Qt Quick applications in a browser.

SUSE Leftovers

  • OBS got the power!
    Old build workers, rack mounted Old build workers, rack mounted One year after introducing a new kind of Open Build Service worker machines, the “lambkins”, the openSUSE Build Service got a big hardware refresh. The new machines, sponsored by SUSE, are equipped with: 2,8GHz AMD Opteron Processors (6348) 256 GB RAM one 120 GB SSD Four of them are located in a chassis with a height of 2 units and run 12-16 workers on them (virtual machines, that are building packages). That new build power allowed us to remove some of old machines from the pool. The unified hardware makes the management of the machines a lot easier now, even if there are still the most powerful old machines left.
  • openSUSE Heroes December meeting – final results
    While we had some fun and good food and drinks, we also managed to discuss a lot during the three days in the Nuremberg headquarter. This was needed because this was the first time that the Heroes came together in their current form. In the end, we managed to do no coding and even (nearly) no administration – but instead we started to discuss our (internal and external) policies and work flows – and did some decisions regarding the next steps and the future of the openSUSE infrastructure.
  • New and improved Inqlude web site
    During last year's Summer of Code I had the honor of mentoring Nanduni Indeewaree Nimalsiri. She worked on Inqlude, the comprehensive archive of third party Qt libraries, improving the tooling to create a better structured web site with additional features such as categorization by topic. She did an excellent job with it and all of her code ended up on the master branch. But we hadn't yet made the switch to change the default layout of the web site to fully take advantage of all her work. As part of SUSE's 15th Hack Week, which is taking place this week, I took some time to change that, put up some finishing touches, and switch the Inqlude web site to the new layout. So here we are. I proudly present the new improved home page of Inqlude.

Benchmarks Of Ubuntu 17.04 Beta vs. Antergos, Clear Linux, openSUSE Tumbleweed

For those curious how Ubuntu 17.04 is shaping up, considering this week was the "beta" release for participating flavors, I decided to take a fresh Ubuntu 17.04 x86_64 daily ISO and see how its performance compares to Ubuntu 17.10, Clear Linux 13600, Antergos 17.2, and openSUSE Tumbleweed. Read more