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Programming: Google's Fuchsia, Go (Golang) and Python

Filed under
Development
Google
  • Fuchsia Friday: Android, Linux apps, and Fuchsia’s close relationship w/ Chrome OS

    Following along with the development of Google’s Fuchsia OS, it has become clear that it will be capable of running both Linux and Android apps. Chrome OS can also do both of these things, and that’s no coincidence, as the Fuchsia team has opted to use some of Chrome OS’s developments for their own benefit.

  • Golang Gets Cheaper Context Switching

    As good news considering how much longer it takes to perform a full context switch on Intel CPUs due to various vulnerability mitigations, the Go programming language run-time now has the ability for performing cheaper context switches.

    Landing in GCC 10 Git with the Golang code is a less involved context switching implementation for Linux x86_64 systems with the libgo run-time library.

  • Build an XML sitemap of XML sitemaps

    Suppose that you have so many thousands of pages that you can't just create a single /sitemap.xml file that has all the URLs (aka ) listed. Then you need to make a /sitemaps.xml that points to the other sitemap files. And if you're in the thousands, you'll need to gzip these files.

    The blog post demonstrates how Song Search generates a sitemap file that points to 63 sitemap-{M}-{N}.xml.gz files which spans about 1,000,000 URLs. The context here is Python and the getting of the data is from Django. Python is pretty key here but if you have something other than Django, you can squint and mentally replace that with your own data mapper.

  • Generate a random IP address in Python

    I have a commenting system where people can type in a comment and optionally their name and email if they like.
    In production, where things are real, the IP address that can be collected are all interestingly different. But when testing this manually on my laptop, since the server is running http://localhost:8000, the request.META.get('REMOTE_ADDR') always becomes 127.0.0.1 . Boring! So I fake it.

PyGamer open source handheld games console $39.95

Filed under
Google
OSS

Gamers, coders and electronic enthusiasts looking to own a pocket sized open source handheld games console may be interested to know that the Adafruit PyGamer is now available priced at $39.95. Offering a small games console that can be coded using MakeCode Arcade, CircuitPython or Arduino. The PyGamer is powered by the ATSAMD51, with 512KB of flash and 192KB of RAM, Adafruit has also added 8 MB of QSPI flash for file storage, handy for images, fonts, sounds, or game assets.

“On the front you get a 1.8″ 160×128 color TFT display with dimmable backlight – we have fast DMA support for drawing so updates are incredibly fast. A dual-potentiometer analog stick gives you great control, with easy diagonal movement – or really any direction you like. There’s also 4 square-top buttons, which fit our square top button caps. The buttons are arranged to mimic a gaming handheld, with 2 menu-select buttons and 2 fire-action buttons. There’s also 5 NeoPixel LEDs to dazzle or track activity.”

Read more

Also: Honeycomb CRUNCH releases, an example Godot game with sources

Android and GNU/Linux Software on Chrome OS

Filed under
OS
Android
GNU
Linux
Google
  • Chrome OS 76 adds a flag to enable GPU support for Linux apps

    The new feature was first noticed by Keith I Myers. It is available in Chrome OS 76.0.3789.0, which is the first dev build of Chrome OS 76. It goes without saying that the feature is unstable right now. It is in the very early stages, so bugs and stability issues are to be expected. Also, keep in mind that GPU acceleration is only supported on a handful of Chromebooks...

  • Google working on new way to run Android apps in Chrome OS called ‘ARCVM’

    For the past few years, it’s been possible on many Chromebooks to install the Play Store and run Android apps. This opened the door for Chromebooks to become more than just glorified web browsers. Now, Google is looking to make some major under-the-hood changes to Chrome OS’s Android apps support, which may allow for a long-requested feature.

Google-Huawei case highlights the importance of free software

Filed under
Android
Google
OSS

[...] The current case demonstrates that even tech giants like Huawei face similar dependencies and vendor lock-in effects as any individual users if they rely on proprietary software.

The following lessons can be drawn from this case: [...]

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Huawei and other mobile “tech giants”: you should (really) break free from Google/Android

Filed under
OS
Android
Google

Huawei has probably played a questionable game with user data and corporate data. This has led governments to discourage the usage of Huawei devices, which is a fair and understandable attitude.

However, what Huawei really didn’t understand is that their dependency on Google/Android technology and services would put them into this terrible situation. Discussions have moved out beyond regular commercial and trade arguments, and are now clearly out of control.

They should have learned from the past: USA has a significant track record when it comes to embargoes and export restrictions. They don’t even hesitate to force their allies to apply the same restrictions, by threatening them more or less directly, commercially and financially.

For Huawei, what we witness today is the result of 10 years of strategic blindness. They should have realized that when they sell a smartphone, most of the value is in the software, not in the hardware. Therefore, they shouldn’t have become so reliant on Google/Android for the software: this hard dependency is a major risk for any mobile business.

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KDE and GNOME Progress: Krita, KIOFuse, Rust

Filed under
KDE
Google
GNOME
  • My Project for Google Summer of Code

    I was accepted to Google Summer of Code and now I need to start planning and doing research to help the best way I can.

    My project is an Animated Vector Brush (AVB) for Krita. This might not say much, so allow me to explain what my project is and what are my objectives.

  • KIOFuse – GSoC 2019

    It’s been a great pleasure to be chosen to work with KDE during GSoC this year. I’ll be working on KIOFuse and hopefully by the end of the coding period it will be well integrated with KIO itself. Development will mainly by coordinated on the #kde-fm channel (IRC Nick: feverfew) with fortnightly updates on my blog so feel free to pop by! Here’s a small snippet of my proposal to give everyone an idea of what I’ll be working on:

  • Guillaume Desmottes: Rust+GNOME hackfest in Berlin

    Last week I had the chance to attend for the first time the GNOME+Rust Hackfest in Berlin. My goal was to finish the GstVideoDecoder bindings, keep learning about Rust and meet people from the GNOME/Rust community. I had some experience with gstreamer-rs as an user but never actually wrote any bindings myself. To make it even more challenging the underlying C API is unfortunatelly unsafe so we had to do some smart tricks to make it safe to use in Rust.

    I'm very happy with the work I managed to do during these 4 days. I was able to complete the bindings as well as my CDG decoder using them. The bindings are waiting for final review and the decoder should hopefully be merged soon as well.

Mozilla WebThings, Mozilla VR and Google Surveillance

Filed under
Google
Moz/FF
  • Empowering User Privacy and Decentralizing IoT with Mozilla WebThings

    Smart home devices can make busy lives a little easier, but they also require you to give up control of your usage data to companies for the devices to function. In a recent article from the New York Times’ Privacy Project about protecting privacy online, the author recommended people to not buy Internet of Things (IoT) devices unless they’re “willing to give up a little privacy for whatever convenience they provide.”

    This is sound advice since smart home companies can not only know if you’re at home when you say you are, they’ll soon be able to listen for your sniffles through their always-listening microphones and recommend sponsored cold medicine from affiliated vendors. Moreover, by both requiring that users’ data go through their servers and by limiting interoperability between platforms, leading smart home companies are chipping away at people’s ability to make real, nuanced technology choices as consumers.

    At Mozilla, we believe that you should have control over your devices and the data that smart home devices create about you. You should own your data, you should have control over how it’s shared with others, and you should be able to contest when a data profile about you is inaccurate.

  • Mozilla VR Blog: Making ethical decisions for the immersive web

    One of the promises of immersive technologies is real time communication unrestrained by geography. This is as transformative as the internet, radio, television, and telephones—each represents a pivot in mass communications that provides new opportunities for information dissemination and creating connections between people. This raises the question, “what’s the immersive future we want?”

    We want to be able to connect without traveling. Indulge our curiosity and creativity beyond our physical limitations. Revolutionize the way we visualize and share our ideas and dreams. Enrich everyday situations. Improve access to limited resources like healthcare and education.

  • Google finds ways to cover your mobile in even more advertising

     

    This week's Google Marketing Live event produced several new options to make Android and iOS just that little bit more ad-heavy. For 'little', read 'understatement'.
     

    They include 'gallery ads' which will allow you to swipe through images, which will become part of the search process on mobile. They'll also form part of the 'Discover' option in the Google Assistant screen and on Google's mobile home page.

So Long Dual-Booting Windows on a Chromebook: Project Campfire is deprecated

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Google
Microsoft
  • So Long Dual-Booting Windows on a Chromebook: Project Campfire is deprecated
  • So long dual-booting Windows on a Chromebook: Project Campfire is deprecated

    Project Campfire turned up in the Chromium world this past August. The intent was to let a Chromebook boot not just into Chrome OS but directly into another operating system such as Linux or Windows. I thought the latter was a positive outcome since it would allow Chromebooks to natively run Windows desktop apps on a Chromebook, and add value to devices.

  • 'Project Campfire' effort for dual-booting Windows on Chromebooks is shutting down

    Google's "Project Campfire" -- a project to allow Chromebooks to natively run Windows desktop and Linux apps -- is being deprecated before it ever debuted. As noted on AboutChromebooks.com on May 15, code removals from "AltOS" (the more official name of Campfire) are indicative that the project is closed.

    Since December 2018, activity on the Project Campfire front had gone quiet, according to AboutChromebooks.

    If Pixelbooks and other Chromebooks were able to run Windows, users who still want and need Windows to run certain apps would have had a new laptop option available to them.

    Google still would have had to pass Microsoft's hardware certification process for Windows 10 before such a feature could come to market. But throughout much of last year, many thought this development was at least somewhat likely to happen.

  • Windows dual booting no longer looking likely on Pixelbooks

    Just under a year ago, there were signs that Google was modifying the firmware of its Pixelbook laptop to enable dual booting into Windows 10. The firmware was updated to give the Pixelbook the ability to boot into an "Alternative OS" ("AltOS" mode). The work included references to the Windows Hardware Certification Kit (WHCK) and the Windows Hardware Lab Kit (HLK), Microsoft's testing frameworks for Windows 8.1 and Windows 10 respectively.

GNOME Chromecast Extension "Cast to TV" v9 Adds Subtitle Configuration, Nautilus Integration

Filed under
Google
GNOME

For the latest Cast to TV v9, the extension settings were redesigned, and there are some new options. The most important change is in my opinion, the addition of Chromecast subtitle settings - you can now change the subtitle font family, style, size, color, outline or background color.

The new version ships with an easier way of installing the required npm modules - a button to install the modules was added to the Modules tab.

Yet another new option allows hiding the remote label (the text shown on the top bar for the Chromecast remote when casting), a useful addition since the text was quite long and it wasn't showing any useful information.

Read more

Google and Collabora Add Major Change to Linux Kernel 5.1 for Chrome OS Devices

Filed under
OS
Linux
Google

According to Collabora's latest report on their contributions to the Linux 5.1 kernel, which arrived last week, it is now possible to mount and boot a mapped device by adding a kernel parameter via command-line at boot time, thus bypassing initramfs image. For Linux kernel 5.1, twelve Collabora's developers also contributed 64 commits and 111 sign-offs, along with lots of bug reports and testing.

"Helen Koike contributed a major change, providing a mechanism to mount a mapped device at boot time through a kernel command line parameter, removing the current initramfs requirement," said Collabora's André Almeida. "This change is the result of the combined effort of both Google and Collabora engineers to push upstream a feature that is shipped on Chrome OS devices and Android devices using AVB 2.0."

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More in Tux Machines

Security: TrendMicro, Mozilla's Firefox Monitor and Capsule8

  • New Linux malware mines crypto after installing backdoor with secret master password [Ed: Skips the part about it having to be installed in the first place (not the fault of Linux)]

    Cybersecurity researchers have identified a new strain of Linux malware that not only mines cryptocurrency illicitly, but provides the attackers with universal access to an infected system via a “secret master password.” TrendMicro’s latest blog also reveals that Skidmap attempts to mask its cryptocurrency mining by faking network traffic and CPU-related statistics.

  • Linux malware masks illicit crypto mining with fake network traffic

    A new cryptocurrency mining malware targeting Linux systems has demonstrated how complex this type of malware has become. Known as Skidmap, the malware is not only harder to detect, it also gives the attackers unfiltered access to the affected system.

  • What to do after a data breach

    You saw the news alert. You got an email, either from Firefox Monitor or a company where you have an account. There’s been a security incident — a data breach. And your account has been compromised. Getting notified that you’ve been a victim of a data breach can be alarming. You have valid cause for concern, but there are a few steps you can take immediately to protect your account and limit the damage.

  • Capsule8 Protect Earns HIPAA Compliance Certification

Graphics: CUDA, Radeon and Vulkan

  • HIPCL Lets CUDA Run On OpenCL+SPIR-V

    Based off AMD's GPUOpen HIP as part of their ROCm stack, researchers at Tampere University in Finland have created HIPCL as leveraging HIP as well as POCL for routing CUDA codes to run on any hardware supporting OpenCL+SPIR-V. HIPCL provides a path of running CUDA on top of OpenCL, permitting the OpenCL driver also supports the SPIR-V intermediate representation. The OpenCL implementation also needs to support Shared Virtual Memory (SVM) so that actually rules out using NVIDIA's own driver for taking this route in place of their actual CUDA driver. HIPCL also relies upon a patched version of the LLVM Clang compiler.

  • Radeon RADV Vulkan Driver Tackling NGG Stream-Out

    One of the areas the RadeonSI OpenGL and RADV/AMDVLK Vulkan drivers have had a challenging time promptly support with AMD Navi GPUs has been the NGG (Next-Gen Geometry) functionality but it's slowly getting worked out. The NGG engine support has required various fixes to the graphics drivers, Navi 14 NGG support is borked, and various other Next-Gen Geometry support issues in the Navi driver code. At least on the software side the open-source developers have continued to improve the support and today the latest improvements arrived for the Mesa RADV Vulkan driver.

  • Radeon Navi 12/14 Open-Source Driver Support Now Being Marked As "Experimental"

    In an interesting change of course, the open-source driver support for AMD Radeon Navi 12 and Navi 14 GPUs is being flagged as experimental and hidden behind a feature flag. Back at the start of August AMD sent out their AMDGPU Linux kernel driver support for Navi 12 along with Navi 14. That Navi 12/14 support has since been queued up for introduction in the Linux 5.4 kernel along with the new Vega-based Arcturus GPU.

  • Vulkan 1.1.123 Released With Two New Extensions

    Vulkan 1.1.123 is the latest weekly update to this high performance graphics API and it's formally introducing two more extensions. Besides the usual variety of documentation clarifications and corrections, there are two new Vulkan extensions with version 1.1.123.

Purism: A Privacy Based Computer Company

It all started when Todd Weaver, Founder and CEO of Purism, realized Big Tech could not be trusted as moral guardians of his and his children’s data. The current paradigm of corporations data hoarding is, as Todd describes it, built on “a tech-stack of exploitation”–and not by accident, but by design. Companies such as Google and Microsoft–and especially Facebook–intentionally collect, store and share user data to whomever they see fit. In recent events, the California Consumer Privacy Act, which becomes effective on January 1, 2020, will make residents of California able to know what personal data is being collected about them, know whether their personal data is sold or disclosed and to whom, say no to the sale of personal data, access their personal data, request a business delete any personal data information about a consumer collected from that consumer and not be discriminated against for exercising their privacy rights. This sounds good, and it is, but not according to Big Tech. Big Tech such as Facebook hired a firm to run ads that said things like “Your next click could cost you $5! Say no to the California Consumer Privacy Act”. Big Tech does not care about privacy, they care about their bottom line. This is where Purism comes in. Purism is a privacy focused company. Their devices, the Librem5, Librem13 and Librem15 run PureOS–a GNU/Linux distribution that puts privacy, security and freedom first, by design. It includes popular privacy-respecting software such as PureBrowser. The OS helps you “Surf the web safely without being tracked by advertisers or marketers” and allows you to easily encrypt your entire OS and data with your own encryption keys. This is huge, especially if you understand how much of your “private” data is actually being shared. Read more

Benchmarks: Linux Boot Times, 16-Core HoneyComb LX2K ARM Workstation and New PTS Release

  • A Look At The Speedy Clear Linux Boot Time Versus Ubuntu 19.10

    Given the interest last week in how Clear Linux dropped their kernel boot time from 3 seconds to 300 ms, here are some fresh boot time benchmarks of Clear Linux compared to Ubuntu 19.10 on both Intel and AMD hardware. The systemd-reported boot time was compared between the latest Clear Linux and Ubuntu 19.10 daily images. Ubuntu 19.10 was used for offering the bleeding-edge packages and being more in line to what is offered by the rolling-release Clear Linux. As well, Canonical has been working on some boot time improvements for Ubuntu 19.10.

  • 16-Core HoneyComb LX2K ARM Workstation Looks To Offer A Decent Performance Oomph

    When it comes to ARM-powered workstation boards there hasn't been a whole lot to get excited about with the likes of the Socionext 96Boards Developerbox being quite expensive and not yielding good performance or featureful boards compared to alternative Intel/AMD/POWER workstation/enthusiast boards. One of the more promising ARM workstation boards we have been following is the HoneyComb LX2K (formerly the "ClearFog" board) and it's looking like it could end up being a decent offering in this space. The HoneyComb LX2K / ClearFog is the 16-core mini-ITX workstation board we have been following since earlier this year. They have been aiming for this 16-core ARM workstation board for $500~750 USD and it looks like they will actually strike on the lower-end of that price-range.

  • Phoronix Test Suite 9.0 Released With New Result Viewer, Offline/Enterprise Benchmarking Enhancements

    Phoronix Test Suite 9.0 is now available as the latest quarterly feature release to our cross-platform, open-source automated benchmarking framework. With Phoronix Test Suite 9.0 comes a rewritten result viewer to offer more result viewing functionality previously only exposed locally via the command-line or through a Phoromatic Server (or OpenBenchmarking.org when results are uploaded), new offline/enterprise usage improvements, various hardware/software detection enhancements on different platforms, and a variety of other additions.