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Google

Young programmer turns love of gaming into a Google Summer of Code project

Filed under
Google
Interviews
Gaming

Recently I installed the GCompris educational software suite on a friend's Linux laptop. While researching information about the application, I found out about Rudra Nil Basu, a young programmer from India, who has blogged about his contributions to GCompris. Based on his work, he was selected to be a Google Summer of Code (GSoC) participant and will receive a stipend to continue working to improve GCompris.

I recently had the opportunity to ask Rudra some questions about how he's translating his passion for game development into making learning fun for young children and supporting open source software and source code sharing. Some questions and answers have been lightly edited for clarity.

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Chrome 60 Beta, New Firefox, Thunderbird Themes

Filed under
Google
Moz/FF
OSS
Web
  • Chrome 60 Beta Rolls Out With VP9 Improvements, New Developer Features

    Chrome 60 Beta adds a Paint Timing API to provide more insight to developers about their "first paint" performance, CSS font-display support, improvements to the Credential Management API, the Payment Request API has been added to desktop Chrome, there's a new Web Budget API to allow sites using push notifications to send a limited number of push messages that will trigger background work, support for Web Push Encryption was added, and a range of other CSS/JavaScript features and APIs.

  • The Best Firefox Ever

    On the Firefox team, one thing we always hear from our users is that they rely on the web for complex tasks like trip planning and shopping comparisons. That often means having many tabs open. And the sites and web apps running in those tabs often have lots of things going on– animations, videos, big pictures and more. Complex sites are more and more common. The average website today is nearly 2.5 megabytes – the same size as the original version of the game Doom, according to Wired. Up until now, a complex site in one Firefox tab could slow down all the others. That often meant a less than perfect browsing experience.

  • Thunderbird Arc Theme Updated With Support for Arc Variants

    An update to the Arc Thunderbird theme add-on is now available for download, and brings support for the 3 Arc GTK theme variants.

Browsers: Chrome 61, Mozilla Against Software Patents, Firefox Photon, and Tor 7.0

Filed under
Google
Moz/FF
OSS
Security
Web

Chrome 59 and Chromium

Filed under
Google
OSS
Web

Google releases open-source platform Spinnaker 1.0

Filed under
Google
OSS

Google is giving the open-source community another tool for continuous delivery and cloud deployments. This week, Google released Spinnaker 1.0, an open-source multi-cloud continuous delivery platform, which companies can use for fast, safe and repeatable deployments in production.

Back in November 2015, Netflix and Google collaborated to bring Spinnaker, a release management platform, to the open-source community. Since that initial release, Spinnaker has been used in several organizations like Netflix, Waze, Microsoft, Oracle, and Target.

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Web Browsers: WebAssembly and Mozilla's Open-Source Hackathon

Filed under
Google
Moz/FF
Web

  • Goodbye PNaCl, Hello WebAssembly!

    Historically, running native code on the web required a browser plugin. In 2013, we introduced the PNaCl sandbox to provide a means of building safe, portable, high-performance apps without plugins. Although this worked well in Chrome, it did not provide a solution that worked seamlessly across all browsers.

  • Google Plans End To PNaCl Support In Favor Of WebAssembly

    The Portable Native Client (PNaCl) ecosystem hasn't been too vibrant for executing native code in web-browsers given its lack of adoption outside of Google/Chrome and other factors. With WebAssembly seeing much broader adoption and inroads, Google is planning to end PNaCl.

  • Mozilla’s Giant, Distributed, Open-Source Hackathon

    Mozilla’s annual Global Sprint is scheduled for June 1 and 2. It’s an international public event: an opportunity for anyone, anywhere to energize their open-source projects with fresh insight and input from around the world.

    Participants include biostatisticians from Brazil, research scientists from Canada, engineers from Nepal, gamers from the U.S., and fellows from Princeton University. In years past, hundreds of individuals in more than 35 cities have participated in the Global Sprint.

CloudReady - Chromebook re-experienced

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Google

I haven't done any extensive testing, but then, how much testing is really needed to run a bunch of Web apps. The whole idea is to have this cloud-based operating system, with easy, flexible access to your data anywhere you go. So if you judge this from the perspective of a typical desktop, you miss the point.

But that is the point. When I install something on a desktop-like form factor, I expect its behavior to match. CloudReady takes you away from that experience, and the transition is not comfortable. You feel very limited. This makes a lot of sense for schools, for instance, where you do want to lock down the devices, and make them simple for reuse. In a home setup, why would you go for just cloud, when you can have that plus any which desktop application on a typical system? After all, nothing prevents you from launching a browser and using Google applications, side by side with your desktop stuff. It's the same thing.

The notion of reviving old hardware is a bit of a wishful thinking. My eeePC test shows that it gets completely crippled when you run HD content in either Firefox or Chrome. An operating system based on Chromium OS will not drastically change that. It cannot do that. Maybe you will have better performance than having Windows there, the same way I opted for a Linux setup on the Asus netbook, but there are physical limits to what old hardware can accomplish.

And then, there's the whole question of cloud ... Most people might be comfy with this, after having used smartphones for a while, but I don't think this is anything novel or mindblowing. CloudReady works as advertised, it's a very cool concept, but ultimately, it gives you a browser on steroids. Google and Neverware have their own agenda for doing this, but for home users, there really isn't any added value in transforming their keyboard-and-mouse box into a browsing portal. So if you ask me, am I ready for the cloud, the answer is, only when it becomes sophisticated enough to match my productivity and freedom of creativity. And for you, do you want a simple, locked down, secure and entirely Google machine that isn't a mobile phone or a dedicated piece of hardware? The answer is 42.

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Imagine an Android Phone Without Linux Inside

Filed under
Android
Linux
Google

Google Fuchsia first saw the light of day in the summer of 2016 as an unannounced bit of code posted on GitHub. Now, in May 2017, the word is being spread by so many tech news outlets that we don’t have room to list them all.

The Fuchsia demo app is called Armadillo, and you’re free to build it for yourself. We even found an article for you titled How to build Fuchsia Armadillo for Android in case you want to see how Fuchsia looks on your own Android phone or tablet.

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Turning Raspberry Pi Into Listening Device

Filed under
Linux
Google
Hardware

Google releases DIY open source Raspberry Pi 'Voice Kit' hardware -- here's how to get it

Filed under
Linux
Google
OSS

Google has long been focused on artificial intelligence. Its Google Now and voice assistance projects have used AI to better the lives of users. The Google Home voice-based hardware unit brings its assistant to life, making traditional inputs and displays unnecessary. With just the power of your voice, you can interact with the device -- nothing else is needed.

The search giant has decided to take artificial intelligence to the maker community with a new initiative called AIY. This initiative (found here) will introduce open source AI projects to the public that makers can leverage in a simple way. Today, Google announces the first-ever AIY project. Called "Voice Kit," it is designed to work with a Raspberry Pi to create a voice-based virtual assistant. Please keep in mind that the Pi itself is not included, so you must bring your own. For this project, you can use a Pi 3 Model B, Pi 2, or Pi Zero. Want a Voice Kit? Here's how to get it. Heck, you might be getting one for free and you don't even know it.

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More in Tux Machines

Security: Equifax, Kodi, Infrared, and Windows XP in 2017

  • Safer but not immune: Cloud lessons from the Equifax breach
  • Warning: If you are using this Kodi repository, you could be in danger
    Kodi is quite possibly the best media center software of all time. If you are looking to watch videos or listen to music, the open source solution provides an excellent overall experience. Thanks to its support for "addons," it has the potential to become better all the time. You see, developers can easily add new functionality by writing an addon for the platform. And yes, some addons can be used for piracy, but not all of them are. These addons, such as Exodus and Covenant, are normally added using a repository, which hosts them. [...] We do not know 100 percent if the person that re-registered the metalkettle name on GitHub is planning anything evil, but it is better to be safe than sorry.
  • Infrared signals in surveillance cameras let malware jump network air gaps
    The malware prototype could be a crucial ingredient for attacks that target some of the world's most sensitive networks. Militaries, energy producers, and other critical infrastructure providers frequently disconnect such networks from the Internet as a precaution. In the event malware is installed, there is no way for it to make contact with attacker-controlled servers that receive stolen data or issue new commands. Such airgaps are one of the most basic measures for securing highly sensitive information and networks. The proof-of-concept malware uses connected surveillance cameras to bridge such airgaps. Instead of trying to use the Internet to reach attacker-controlled servers, the malware weaves passwords, cryptographic keys, and other types of data into infrared signals and uses a camera's built-in infrared lights to transmit them. A nearby attacker then records the signals with a video camera and later decodes embedded secrets. The same nearby attackers can embed data into infrared signals and beam them to an infected camera, where they're intercepted and decoded by the network malware. The covert channel works best when attackers have a direct line of sight to the video camera, but non-line-of-sight communication is also possible in some cases.
  • Manchester police still relies on Windows XP
    England's second biggest police force has revealed that more than one in five of its computers were still running Windows XP as of July. Greater Manchester Police told the BBC that 1,518 of its PCs ran the ageing operating system, representing 20.3% of all the office computers it used. Microsoft ended nearly all support for the operating system in 2014. Experts say its use could pose a hacking risk. The figure was disclosed as part of a wider Freedom of Information request. "Even if security vulnerabilities are identified in XP, Microsoft won't distribute patches in the same way it does for later releases of Windows," said Dr Steven Murdoch, a cyber-security expert at University College London.

Flock 2017, Fedora 27, and New Fedora 26 (F26) ISO

  • Flock 2017: How to make your application into a Flatpak?
  • Flock to Fedora 2017
  • Flock 2017 – A Marketing talk about a new era to come.
    I had two session at Flock this year, one done by me and another in support of Robert Mayr in the Mindshare one, if there were been any need for discussing. Here I’m talking about my session: Marketing – tasks and visions (I will push the report about the second one after Robert’s one, for completion). In order to fit the real target of a Flock conference (that is a contributor conference, not a show where people must demonstrate how much cool they are; we know it!) is to bring and show something new, whether ideas, software, changes and so on, and discuss with other contributors if they’re really innovative, useful and achievable.
  • F26-20170918 Updated Live isos released
  • GSoC2017 Final — Migrate Plinth to Fedora Server
  • Building Modules for Fedora 27
    Let me start with a wrong presumption that you have everything set up – you are a packager who knows what they want to achieve, you have a dist-git repository created, you have all the tooling installed. And of course, you know what Modularity is, and how and why do we use modulemd to define modular content. You know what Host, Platform, and Bootstrap modules are and how to use them.

Red Hat Financial Results Expectations High

Will Microsoft love Linux to death? Shuttleworth and Stallman on whether Windows 10 is free software's friend

Richard Stallman is a free-software activist and creator of the GNU OS that forms part of the basis of modern GNU/Linux distros. He believes that Microsoft's decision to build a Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL) amounts to an attempt to extinguish software that users are free to run, copy, distribute, study, change and improve. "It certainly looks that way. But it won't be so easy to extinguish us, because our reasons for using and advancing free software are not limited to practical convenience," he said. "We want freedom. As a way to use computers in freedom, Windows is a non-starter." Read more