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Google

Google, Money and Censorship in Free Software communities

Filed under
Google
Web
Debian

Alexander Wirt (formorer) has tried to justify censoring the mailing list in various ways. Wirt is also one of Debian's GSoC administrators and mentors, it appears he has a massive conflict of interest when censoring posts about Google.

Wirt has also made public threats to censor other discussions, for example, the DebConf Israel debate. The challenges of holding a successful event in that particular region require a far more mature approach.

Why are these donations and conflicts of interest hidden from the free software community who rely on, interact with contribute to Debian in so many ways? Why doesn't Debian provide a level playing field, why does money from Google get this veil of secrecy?

[...]

Google also operates a mailing list for mentors in Google Summer of Code. It looks a lot like any other free software community mailing list except for one thing: censorship.

Look through the "Received" headers of messages on the mailing list and you can find examples of messages that were delayed for some hours waiting for approval. It is not clear how many messages were silently censored, never appearing at all.

Recent attempts to discuss the issue on Google's own mailing list produced an unsurprising result: more censorship.

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A look at Chromebooks

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Google

In this article, we will look at Chromebooks and why it is becoming so popular in the world today and if it is worth considering as your next computer or a second computer.

The first Chromebooks arrived in June 2011. They were basic computers that were simply a Chrome Browser on a cheap computer. The price was also quite low. Soon the market grew as many people started to experience the joy which, we Linux users, always enjoyed; fast updates, free and no viruses and let's face it many people are merely using a computer to browse the internet, and they don't need the rest and Google released that a Chromebook meet that need.

After Chromebooks grew in popularity, especially in schools, but businesses and for home use also, Google realized that people are missing some apps. As people are familiar to Windows and apps galore, so they brought the Google Play Store to Chromebooks, which has been one of their best moves yet, as people are already familiar with it due to Android phones and as Chrome OS and the Play Store is part of Google, it was an obvious move.

However, this move brought in a new stage for Chromebooks as well because no users can run many more apps, but it also means that Chromebooks needs more system resources, so different price ranges for Chromebooks appears. Cheap ones and pricey ones with powerful hardware.

As Chromebooks become more powerful and more popular Google continues to improve it by bringing more software to it, and the next thing is Linux apps so that we can run native Linux apps like LibreOffice, Blender, etc. on a Chromebook. It is still a work in progress, and they are continuing to improve it so that it can run nearly all the Linux apps in the future flawlessly.

Crossover also released a package to run Windows apps on Chromebooks and Wine also have a package for Android, and I will be surprised if it doesn't work on Chromebooks as well.

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Openwashing Leftovers (Mostly Google and Microsoft)

Filed under
Google
Microsoft
OSS

Lessons in Vendor Lock-in: Google and Huawei

Filed under
Android
Google

Vendor lock-in isn't new, but until the last decade or so, it generally was thought of by engineers as a bad thing. Companies would take advantage the fact that you used one of their products that was legitimately good to use the rest of their products that may or may not be as good as those from their competitors. People felt the pain of being stuck with inferior products and rebelled.

These days, a lot of engineers have entered the industry in a world where the new giants of lock-in are still growing and have only flexed their lock-in powers a bit. Many engineers shrug off worries about choosing a solution that requires you to use only products from one vendor, in particular if that vendor is a large enough company. There is an assumption that those companies are too big ever to fail, so why would it matter that you rely on them (as many companies in the cloud do) for every aspect of their technology stack?

Many people who justify lock-in with companies who are too big to fail point to all of the even more important companies who use that vendor who would have even bigger problems should that vendor have a major bug, outage or go out of business. It would take so much effort to use cross-platform technologies, the thinking goes, when the risk of going all-in with a single vendor seems so small.

Huawei also probably figured (rightly) that Google and Android were too big to fail. Why worry about the risks of being beholden to a single vendor for your OS when that vendor was used by other large companies and would have even bigger problems if the vendor went away?

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Microsoft and Google Openwashing

Filed under
Google
Microsoft

Fuchsia OS Developer Site and Less Surveillance-Centric Systems ("Dumb")

Filed under
OS
Google
  • Google's Mysterious Fuchsia OS Developer Site Debuts With New Fascinating Details

    Google's mysterious Fuchsia OS has been a skunkworks project at Google for years now, with only small glimpses of the new operating system...

  • Google's Fuchsia OS Developer Site Debuts

    Forbes reports that Google has launched a new website, fuchsia.dev, with documentation and source for Fuchsia OS, including the Zircon microkernel.signed to run on anything from 32-bit or 64-bit ARM cores to 64-bit X86 processors and it has a potential to be rather disruptive."

  • Fuchsia OS Developer Site Goes Live With Documentation

    oogle hasn’t revealed much about Fuchsia OS publicly, but every now and then, it quietly drops hints and clues which further affirm the progress of the mysterious OS.

  • My phone’s not dumb, it just looks it.

    For my money, the height of the smartphone age was 2009-2011. That brought us the Nokia n900 and Nokia n9. Both brilliant for their own reasons. There were devices before that which I’d be happy to have back. But nothing since then. Sure, the Ubuntu Edge or Neo900 would have been great. But they never came to be.

GSoC Work on KDE and GNOME, Epiphany Version Numbers

Filed under
Development
KDE
Google
GNOME
  • Week 4, Titler Tool and MLT – GSoC ’19

    It’s already been a month now, and this week – it hasn’t been the most exciting one. Mostly meddling with MLT, going through pages of documentation, compiling MLT and getting used to the MLT codebase.

    With the last week, I concluded with the rendering library part and now this week, I began writing a new producer in MLT for QML which will be rendered using the renderering library. So I went through a lot of MLT documentation, and it being a relatively new field for me, here is what I’ve gathered so far:

    At its core, MLT employs the basic producer-consumer concept. A producer produces data (here, frame objects) and a consumer consumes frames – as simple as that.

  • [Older] The Journey Begins | Google Summer of Code

    Google Summer of Code (GSoC) is a global program focused on bringing more student developers into open source software development. Students work with an open source organization on a 3 month programming project during their break from school.

  • Making the 'httpsrc' plugin asynchronous | GSoC 2019

    GStreamer plugins are the building units of any GStreamer application. The plugins can be linked and arranged in a pipeline. This pipeline defines the flow of the data. 'souphttpsrc', aka HTTP source is a plugin which reads data from a remote location specified by a URI and the supported protocols are 'http', 'https'. This plugin is written in C. 'rshttpsrc' is the Rust version of the above said plugin.

  • Michael Catanzaro: On Version Numbers

    I’m afraid 3.33.4 will arrive long before we make it to 3.33.3-333, so this is probably the last cool version number Epiphany will ever have.

    I might be guilty of using an empty commit to claim the -33 commit.

GAFAM and 'Cloud': Google, Microsoft, Amazon and GitHub

Filed under
Google
Microsoft
  • Daniel Stenberg: Google to reimplement curl in libcrurl

    By throwing a lot of man power on it. As the primary author and developer of the libcurl API and the libcurl code, I assume that Cronet works quite differently than libcurl so there’s going to be quite a lot of wrestling of data and code flow to make this API work on that code.

    The libcurl API is also very versatile and is an API that has developed over a period of almost 20 years so there’s a lot of functionality, a lot of options and a lot of subtle behavior that may or may not be easy or straight forward to mimic.

    The initial commit imported the headers and examples from the curl 7.65.1 release.

  • Microsoft, you should look away now: Google's cloud second only to AWS in dev survey [Ed: Longtime Microsoft booster Tim Anderson  on Azure being a failure after so many entryism attempts and underhanded tactics]

    Coders use Google Cloud Platform (GCP) more than Microsoft Azure, though Amazon Web Services (AWS) has a comfortable lead, according to a Developer Ecosystem survey conducted by tools vendor JetBrains.

    Developer usage is 67 per cent AWS versus 28 per cent GCP and 21 per cent Azure, according to the new survey. Unfortunately, the question was posed in a different way in the 2018 survey, adding on-premises into the mix, but last year Azure and GCP had equal share after AWS.

    The survey had 19,000 participants invited via "Twitter ads, Facebook ads, Google Adwords and JetBrains' own communication channels," the tools vendor said, though "only the responses of 6,993 respondents were included in the report." Responses were removed to reduce bias, yet it warned "some bias may be present as JetBrains users may have been more willing on average to compete the survey".

  • Get your coat, you've pulled a Pull Panda: GitHub goes home with code collab specialists [Ed: Notice how Microsoft only takes GitHub in more of a proprietary software direction. That says a lot – they have plans and they’re really detrimental to FOSS]

GNU/Linux on Chrome OS and on Lenovo's 2019 ThinkPad P Series

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Google
Ubuntu
  • Best Linux-Centric File Managers for Chrome OS

    I recently covered how to install Linux on Chromebook and you can check it out here. Today, let’s divert our attention to the File Manager in Chrome OS.

    Chrome OS is a beautiful Operating System (as is expected of all Google products) and it houses a responsive file manager for navigating its file trees.

    While it works excellently on Chrome OS which it was designed for, navigating Linux directories with it doesn’t feel as “Linuxy” and it can be helpful to install a Linux-centric file manager to eliminate that need.

  • Proposed Chrome OS 78 change will use the Files app to restore Linux containers on Chromebooks

    Chrome OS 74 brought the ability to backup and restore Linux containers on a Chromebook. It’s handy and it works. However, to use it, you have to go to the Linux settings in Chrome OS, which isn’t ideal.

  • Lenovo's 2019 ThinkPad P Series Lineup: OLED, RTX Quadro, Ubuntu, and More

    All P Series mobile workstations can also be configured with either Windows (up to Windows 10 Pro) or Ubuntu, making these a powerful mobile option for Linux users.

Latest From Mozilla and Chrome 76 Beta

Filed under
Google
Moz/FF
  • Mozilla Security Blog: Updated GPG key for signing Firefox Releases

    The GPG key used to sign the Firefox release manifests is expiring soon, and so we’re going to be switching over to new key shortly.

    The new GPG subkey’s fingerprint is 097B 3130 77AE 62A0 2F84 DA4D F1A6 668F BB7D 572E, and it expires 2021-05-29.

  • Happy BMO Push Day!
  • Extensions in Firefox 68

    In Firefox 68, we are introducing a new API and some enhancements to webRequest and private browsing. We’ve also fixed a few issues in order to improve compatibility and resolve issues developers were having with Firefox.

  • Chrome 76 Beta: dark mode, payments, new PWA features and more

    Unless otherwise noted, changes described below apply to the newest Chrome Beta channel release for Android, Chrome OS, Linux, macOS, and Windows. Find more information about the features listed here through the provided links or from the list on ChromeStatus.com. Chrome 76 is beta as of June 13, 2019.

  • Chrome 76 Beta Brings Dark Mode Media Query, Other Improvements

    Following last week's release of Chrome 75, Google today issued the first public beta for the Chrome 76 web-browser. 

    The Chrome 76 browser now supports the "prefers-color-scheme" media query that can be used if wanting to implement a dark mode for a web-site to match any dark theme/mode of the device / operating system.

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More in Tux Machines

today's leftovers

  • NHS admits Windows XP is still running on more than 2,000 systems

    However, in response to a written parliamentary question from shadow Cabinet Office minister Jo Platt, the government this week revealed that, despite being six months away from that target, 2,300 NHS computers are still running Windows XP.

  • 3 ways to benefit from open source infrastructure

    Using open source infrastructure can reduce operating costs and streamline upgrades, but it's important to weigh the pros and cons before you jump on the bandwagon.

  • System Boot and Security Microconference Accepted into 2019 Linux Plumbers Conference

    We are pleased to announce that the System Boot and Security Microconference has been accepted into the 2019 Linux Plumbers Conference! Computer-system security is a topic that has gotten a lot of serious attention over the years, but there has not been anywhere near as much attention paid to the system firmware. But the firmware is also a target for those looking to wreak havoc on our systems. Firmware is now being developed with security in mind, but provides incomplete solutions. This microconference will focus on the security of the system especially from the time the system is powered on.

  • This startup is giving away all its database software for free as open source, and it says it's not afraid of Oracle or Amazon

    Even though other companies have made defensive moves against Amazon to protect their business, the YugaByte co-founders explain why they're not worried about Amazon.

  • Samsung Chromebook 3 - XE500C13-K04US
  • Samsung Chromebook 3

    Today we are looking at the Samsung Chromebook 3 (XE501C13-K01US). It is an affordable computer for all your basic everyday needs for a great price and good quality from Samsung. It comes with a fanless Dual-Core Intel Celeron Processor N3060 CPU, an 11.6 inch, 1366x768, LED display, and non-touch screen. It has 2GB of RAM and a 16GB eMMC SSD. It has Android Apps (Google Play) but it does not have Linux Apps (crostini) support and it will receive auto-updates until June 2021.

  • Acer Chromebook 11 7th Gen

    Today we are looking at the Acer Chromebook 11 7th Gen (CB3-132-C4VV / NX.G4XAA.002). It is a budget Chromebook, perfect for daily tasks like browsing the web, watching movies and writing documents. It comes with a fanless Dual-Core Intel Celeron Processor N3060 CPU, an 11.6 inch, 1366x768, IPS display, and non-touch screen. It has 4gb of RAM and a 16GB eMMC SSD.

  • ASUS Chromebook Flip C434

    Today we are looking at the ASUS Chromebook Flip C434 - C434TA-DS384T. It is a 2 in 1 Chromebook, familiar laptop and tablet, and it comes with a sleek all-metal look and diamond-cut edges, makes it a perfect Chromebook for anyone who wants a stylish modern Chromebook!

  • Samsung Chromebook 3 - XE500C13-K06US

    Today we are looking at the Samsung Chromebook 3 - XE500C13-K06US. It is an affordable, yet powerful, small and thin computer for all your basic everyday needs for a great price and good quality from Samsung.

  • Samsung Chromebook Pro
  • Valve releases a new update to the Steam Client, nice Linux fixes made it in again

    Valve have released a new stable version of the Steam Client today to add new features, improve existing features and catch some pesky bugs flying around. There's some better "client logic" to choose and connect to download servers, which should hopefully give better download speeds, better connection login in initializing the friends list, screenshots in SteamVR Home should be sorted, a fix for certain web page elements continuing to render in the Steam client when it is minimized or closed to the system tray, some "improved reliability of registry saving on Linux and macOS" and the SteamVR dashboard should no longer obscure transition overlays when launching a game.

  • Fast-paced atmospheric arcade title "LOST ORBIT: Terminal Velocity" is out with Linux support

    You're going to need some quick reflexes for LOST ORBIT: Terminal Velocity, a game about being stranded in deep space. Note: Key provided by the developer. This is actually a revamp of the 2015 title LOST ORBIT. This new definitive edition includes a brand new 12 level epilogue and story, new abilities and ways to die, 15 new challenge levels, a reworking of the original levels with new cinematics and so on. If you owned the original, you should see this new edition in your Steam library free.

Today in Techrights

Android Leftovers

Android Leftovers