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OpenMoko: 10 Years After (Mickey’s Story)

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Hardware
OSS
Gadgets

For the 10th anniversary since the legendary OpenMoko announcement at the „Open Source in Mobile“ (7th of November 2006 in Amsterdam), I’ve been meaning to write an anthology or – as Paul Fertser suggested on #openmoko-cdevel – an obituary. I’ve been thinking about objectively describing the motivation, the momentum, how it all began and – sadly – ended. I did even plan to include interviews with Sean, Harald, Werner, and some of the other veterans. But as with oh so many projects of (too) wide scope this would probably never be completed.

As November 2016 passed without any progress, I decided to do something different instead. Something way more limited in scope, but something I can actually finish. My subjective view of the project, my participation, and what I think is left behind: My story, as OpenMoko employee #2. On top of that you will see a bunch of previously unreleased photos (bear with me, I’m not a good photographer and the camera sucked as well).

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Financial news: Jolla reaches 70M USD of funding

Filed under
Linux
Gadgets

Surviving against the big players in the mobile industry is a lot about funding, at least until a start-up gets all their sails up. Jolla, a Finnish company developing Sailfish OS mobile operating system, has struggled for six years against the real big players like Google's Android and that hasn't always been easy. One of the former Nokia directors told them in the beginning that they will need at least 100M USD to break into the business they aim at. Reaching the end of 5th financing round, Jolla has now received 70% of that, but they are still far away of their goal.

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Jolla to Begin Testing Sailfish OS on the Sony Xperia X this Month

Filed under
Linux
Gadgets

During Mobile World Congress 2017, Jolla announced a new collaboration with the Sony Open Devices program to bring Sailfish OS for Sony Xperia smartphones. Now, the company has just released a new post to inform us that Sailfish OS would be available for the first Xperia devices starting in this month.

The first Sony device to officially support Sailfish OS will be the Sony Xperia X. Initially, only a small number of users will get Sailfish OS 2.1.2. Jolla plans to use its Cbeta, a small community development group, for alpha and beta testing. The team consists of developers, translators, and attendees of various community events. The first few members of the Cbeta group are expected to get resources from Jolla sometime this month.

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Ubuntu Phone security updates end in June, app store closing

Filed under
Ubuntu
Gadgets

When Mark Shuttleworth, founder of Canonical (the company behind the Ubuntu Linux distribution), announced his company would not only be abandoning their custom desktop environment (Unity), but also halting development on their phone/tablet operating system, many questions were left unanswered.

One of those questions: What happens to the existing phones and tablets running Ubuntu Touch that have already been sold?

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UBports Recommends Buying Fairphone 2, OnePlus One or Nexus 5 as Ubuntu Phones

Filed under
Ubuntu
Gadgets

Continuing our coverage on the UBports' Unity 8 and Ubuntu Touch plans, we've got word from Marius Quabeck, who's now the new community manager for UBports, about some of the aspects that remained unclear since the last Q&A.

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Next Tizen powered smartphone Samsung Z4 makes appearance at FCC

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Gadgets

Samsung’s next Tizen Smartphone, the Samsung Z4 SM-Z400F, has made its appearance at the FCC. Looking through the details of the filing we can see that there will be dual-SIM variant of the device with model number SM-Z400DS. The Samsung Z4 will now be the fourth smartphone powered by Tizen that the Korean tech giant will release. Previous models were the Samsung Z1, Z2 and Z3.

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Also: Smartphone App: Astroscope: a new horoscope app added to Tizen Store

Devices/Mobile

Filed under
Linux
Gadgets
  • AsteroidOS is an Open Source OS for Smartwatches

    Florent Revest is a French computer science student who has been working on an open source operating system for smartwatches for the last two years. Yesterday, he officially launched version 1 of the alpha for AsteroidOS.

    The goal for the platform was to create something that gave smartwatch owners more control over their privacy, as well as the hardware they purchased.

    Florent feels that the current proprietary platforms do not guarantee this, and this was the basis for AsteroidOS. He wanted his open source smartwatch operating system to provide freedom with free software, more privacy than other wearable platforms offer, interoperability so it could communicate with other devices, modularity that enabled the user to tweak and change the OS as they see fit, the ability to port the software to as many devices as possible, and gathering a community who is passionate about the platform.

  • AsteroidOS Brings Open Source Functionality To Smartwatches

    Smartwatches may not have taken off like companies were hoping, but they have come quite far in terms of what they can offer and what sorts of features are available for the many different models of smartwatches that are out there. Even with the updated functionality of options like Samsung’s Gear S lineup and Android Wear platforms, though, smartwatches can still feel a little bit limiting, and part of this undoubtedly includes the reason that the operating systems aren’t as open as platforms like Android. That is now changing thanks to a platform called AsteroidOS which is an open source operating system for smartwatches.

  • Mini Apollo Lake module takes the heat — and the cold

    Congatec’s “Conga-MA5” is a Linux-ready COM Express Compact Type 10 Mini module with Apollo Lake SoCs, up to 128GB eMMC 5.1, and -40 to 85°C support.

    Congatec was one of the first embedded vendors to announce computer-on-modules based on Intel’s Atom E3900 and other Apollo Lake Pentium and Celeron SoCs. The offerings included a Qseven module, a SMARC 2.0 module, and a COM Express Compact Type 6 Conga-TCA5. The company has now followed up with a COM Express Compact Type 10 Mini Conga-MA5 module.

  • Top 20 Best Tizen Apps for November 2016, Tizen Smartphone
  • Smartphone game: Indian Football League game comes to the Tizen Store

Eight great Linux gifts for the holiday season

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Gadgets

Do you want to give your techie friend a very Linux holiday season? Sure you do! Here are some suggestion to brighten your favorite Tux fan's day.

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Also: More Random Gift Ideas For Linux Enthusiasts & Others Into Tech

Which open source gift is at the top of your holiday wish list?

Huawei Linux Devices

Filed under
Gadgets
  • Huawei Mate 9 leaked in flat and curved-screen variants

    Evan Blass has leaked renders of two variants of the upcoming Huawei Mate 9: a flat-screened and dual curved screen version that looks an awful lot like the Galaxy Note 7. While the wrapping will come off the new phone/s on November 3 in Munich, these renders are apparently the real deal and Blass’ sources have confirmed that the previously leaked Mate 9 specs are legit.

  • Huawei launches Honor 8 in India, along with Honor 8 Smart
  • Huawei Teases Honor S1 smartwatch, No mention of Android Wear

    Huawei is currently teasing their new smartwatch which is to be released under the Honor brand named as the Honor S1. The Chinese manufacturer has an event scheduled for October 18 at which we expect the S1 to be unveiled. But could it be running Tizen ? Huawei are already known as stating they will not release anymore Android wear smartwatches for the remainder of this year, so this leaves either Tizen or some other proprietary OS. According to a report in the JoongAng Ilbo newspaper Huawei are currently working with Samsung to deploy the Tizen operating system in its next smartwatches.

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More in Tux Machines

OSS Leftovers

  • Canada’s Spy Agency Releases its Cyber-Defense Tool for Public
  • Canadian govt spooks open source anti-malware analytics tool
    The Communications Security Establishment (CSE) said the AssemblyLine tool is designed to analyse large volumes of files, and can automatically rebalance workloads.
  • Microservices served on blockchain, in open source
    Cloud application marketplace company Wireline is working with open source blockchain project developer Qtum The new union is intended to provide a conduit to consuming microservices at [web] scale using blockchain at the core. As we know, microservices offer the ability to create Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) without having to manage the underlying hardware and software infrastructure. [...] The Qtum a blockchain application platform combines the functions of Bitcoin Core, an account abstraction layer allowing for multiple virtual machines and a proof-of-stake consensus protocol aimed at tackling industry-use cases. The Qtum Foundation, headquartered in Singapore, is the decision-making body that drives the project’s development.
  • Rendering HTML5 video in Servo with GStreamer
    At the Web Engines Hackfest in A Coruña at the beginning of October 2017, I was working on adding some proof-of-concept code to Servo to render HTML5 videos with GStreamer. For the impatient, the results can be seen in this video here
  • Working Intel CET Bits Now Land In GCC8
    A few days back I wrote about Intel's work on Control-flow Enforcement Technology beginning to land in GCC. This "CET" work for future Intel CPUs has now landed in full for GCC 8. The bits wiring up this control-flow instrumentation and enforcement support are now all present in mainline GCC SVN/Git for next year's GCC 8.1 release.
  • Using Gitea and/or Github to host blog comments
    After having moved from FSFE’s wordpress instance I thought long about whether I still want to have comments on the new blog. And how I would be able to do it with a statically generated site. I think I have found/created a pretty good solution that I document below.

Security Leftovers

  • Where Did That Software Come From?
    The article explores how cryptography, especially hashing and code signing, can be use to establish the source and integrity. It examines how source code control systems and automated build systems are a key part of the software provenance story. (Provenance means “a record of ownership of a work of art or an antique, used as a guide to authenticity or quality.” It is increasingly being applied to software.)
  • Judge: MalwareTech is no longer under curfew, GPS monitoring [Updated]
    A judge in Milwaukee has modified the pre-trial release conditions of Marcus Hutchins, also known online as "MalwareTech," who was indicted two months ago on federal criminal charges. Under US Magistrate Judge William Duffin’s Thursday order, Hutchins, who is currently living in Los Angeles, will no longer be subject to a curfew or to GPS monitoring.
  • [Older] Leicester teen tries to hack CIA and FBI chiefs' computers
    A teenager attempted to hack senior US government officials' computers from his home. Kane Gamble, 18, from Coalville, Leicestershire, pleaded guilty to 10 charges relating to computer hacking. His targets included the then CIA director John Brennan and former FBI deputy director Mark Giuliano.

Debian: pk4, Freexian and More

Kernel and Graphics: ZenStates, AMDGPU, RADV, Vulkan, NVIDIA

  • ZenStates Allows Adjusting Zen P-States, Other Tweaking Under Linux
    ZenStates is an independent effort to offer P-States-based overclocking from the Linux desktop of AMD Ryzen processors and other tuning. ZenStates-Linux is an open-source Python script inspired by some available Windows programs for offering Ryzen/Zen CPU overclocking from the desktop by manipulating the performance states of the processor.
  • AMDGPU DC Gets A Final Batch Of Changes Before Linux 4.15
    The AMDGPU DC display code has a final batch of feature updates that were sent in this weekend for DRM-Next staging and is the last set besides fixes for the "DC" code for the 4.15 target.
  • Valve Developer Lands VK_EXT_global_priority For RADV Vulkan Driver
  • Vulkan 1.0.64 Adds In Another AMD-Developed Extension
    Vulkan 1.0.64 is out this weekend as the newest specification refinement to this high-performance graphics/compute API. As usual, most of the changes for this minor Vulkan revision are just documentation clarifications and corrections. This week's update brings just under a dozen fixes.
  • NVIDIA TX2 / Tegra186 Display Support Isn't Ready For Linux 4.15
    While the Jetson TX2 has been out since this past March and it's a phenomenal ARM development board, sadly the Direct Rendering Manager (DRM) driver support for it still isn't ready with the mainline Linux kernel. Thierry Reding of NVIDIA sent in the Tegra DRM driver changes for DRM-Next that in turn is staged for Linux 4.15. Reding commented that there is prepatory work for the TX2 (Tegra186) but it's not all ready for upstream yet.