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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

Putting Linux on your Chromebook is easier than you think (and totally worth it!)

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Google

If you need to use those productivity programs that Chrome OS just doesn't offer, or you just want to try something new, Linux on your Chromebook has you covered.

You've may have seen chatter on the internet about installing Linux on your Chromebook. Plenty of longtime Chrome OS users are doing it, and it allows the use of programs like GIMP (a Photoshop replacement), or Darktable, (a Lightroom alternative) as well as plenty of programs for video and audio editing. It's a way to use your Chromebook for the few power-user features you might need. It's also completely free and easier than you think.

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Google Developer Kees Cook Details The Linux Kernel Self-Protection Project

Filed under
Linux
Google

At the Linux Security Summit last month, Google developer Kees Cook shared the current workings of the Kernel Self-Protection Project (KSPP). The project, he said, goes beyond user space and even beyond kernel integrity. The idea is to implement changes to help the kernel protect itself.

To understand the importance of the project, Cook said, we need to think about the multitude of devices running Linux, such as servers, laptops, cars, phones, and then consider that the vast majority of these devices are running old software, which contains bugs. Some of these devices have very long lifetimes, but the lifetime of a bug can be longer still.

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