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Development

Development and Programming: Hugo, Jekyll, D, and Kotlin

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Development
  • Hugo vs. Jekyll: Comparing the leading static website generators

    Unless your spirit animal is Emily Dickinson, when you make a thing, you want to share it with the world. Sharing your work means that you need a website. Of course, you could simply partake in digital sharecropping and use any of the various social media sites to get your work in front of an audience. There sure are plenty to choose from... and not just "conventional" social media sites. With places like Artstation, Flickr, Soundcloud, and Wattpad, there's an outlet for you, whatever your medium.

  • 5 reasons the D programming language is a great choice for development

    It's not uncommon to find yourself in a situation where you have an idea and you want to implement it in code exactly the way you are thinking about it in your mind. However, sometimes you have to compromise the idea to fit the code, instead of modeling the code to fit the idea. D supports several programming paradigms, including functional style, imperative, object oriented, metaprogramming, and concurrent (actor model), all harmoniously integrated. You have the option to choose whichever paradigm is convenient for modeling code to fit your idea.

  • Sick of Java and C++? Google pours a cup o' Kotlin for Android devs
  • How Socrates taught me to talk to developers

    The University of Chicago Law School, where Barack Obama taught constitutional law until making a slight career change, describes the Socratic method as an inquiry practice based on "asking continual questions until a contradiction was exposed, thus proving the fallacy of the initial assumption." A catchier description, offered by this quick how-to for using the method with children, is "clarify, synthesize, restate."

Top 10 Linux distros for developers in 2017

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Development
GNU
Linux

More popular versions of Linux such as Ubuntu focus on enhancing the user experience by automatically updating packages and providing flashy, resource-heavy GUIs.

While user-friendly distributions (distros) certainly have their place, in this guide, we've tried to get back to the glory days when developers would customise their Linux build. These Linux distros allow you to fine-tune your development environment so whether you're a veteran programmer or relative newcomer, you can get on with your coding.

In short, whatever your programming preferences, you’ll find a distro to suit your needs in this top 10 roundup.

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Android embraces the Kotlin programming language

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Android
Development

If you're not a mobile developer working win Android, chances are you haven't heard of Kotlin. If you are an Android programmer, it's the best thing since sliced bread.

While Java has long been Android's main programming language, it's never a good fit. Java was written when "mobile" computing devices were 7-pound laptops. In the meantime, Apple iOS developers had the pleasure of working with mobile-first languages such as Swift. Unlike Swift, which is now open source but started as an in-house Apple product, Kotlin started out as a third-party language.

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Dev/FOSS Events: Kamailio World, Open Source Day, SunCamp, and DebConf14 Throwback

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Development
OSS
  • Kamailio World and FSFE team visit, Tirana arrival

    This week I've been thrilled to be in Berlin for Kamailio World 2017, one of the highlights of the SIP, VoIP and telephony enthusiast's calendar. It is an event that reaches far beyond Kamailio and is well attended by leaders of many of the well known free software projects in this space.

  • The Open Source Day 2017 conference coming on May 17th in Warsaw

    Nearly 1,000 attendees and several thousand viewers online participates in the annual Open Source Day conference. This Europe’s largest event dedicated to open technology has become a highlight among tech events in the country. The 10th anniversary edition will take place on May 17th at Marriott Hotel in Warsaw.

  • 6 days to SunCamp

    It will be a small event (about 20-25 people), with a more intimate atmosphere than DebConf. There will be people fixing RC bugs, preparing stuff for after the release, or just discussing with other Debian folks.

  • Linus Torvalds Talks to Debian Users

    A little over two-and-a-half years ago, Linus Torvalds spent over an hour taking and answering questions from an audience of developers at DebConf14 in Portland, Oregon. Some of what he said is by now old news, but that’s interesting too, as it serves as a marker for where we’ve been.

Development News: Haskell, Node.js, C++, and Golang

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Development
  • Three things I didn't know about Haskell

    I've been trying to refresh my Haskell skills and Paul Callaghan recommended I read the paper "A History of Haskell: Being Lazy With Class", which I found (surprisingly?) fascinating.

  • Keeping the Node.js core small

    Features are wonderful. When Node.js adds a new API, we can instantly do more with it.

    Wouldn’t a larger standard library be more useful for developers? Who could possibly object to Node.js getting better? And who, even more strangely, would actually remove APIs, making Node.js objectively worse?

  • NVIDIA Details CUDA 9 Features, Allows C++14 In Device Code

    NVIDIA at their annual GPU Technology Conference (GTC'17) have provided more public details about the forthcoming CUDA 9 compute update.

  • A Big Golang Update Lands In GCC 8.0

    Now that GCC 7 was released as stable last week, the GCC trunk/master code-base is back open for merging more feature work with the beginning of the GCC 8 development cycle.

Optimizing Apps for Wearables With Enlightenment Foundation Libraries

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Development
GNU
Linux

Developers looking to add GUIs to their embedded devices have a variety of open source and commercial options, with Qt generally leading the list. If you’re operating in severely constrained environments, however, especially for battery powered devices like wearables, the open source Enlightenment Foundation Libraries (EFL) should be given close consideration.

At the recent Embedded Linux Conference, Cedric Bail, a long-time contributor to the Enlightenment project who works on EFL integration with Tizen at Samsung Open Source Group, discussed some of the lessons learned in optimizing wearable apps for low battery, memory, and CPU usage. Bail summarized EFL and revealed an ongoing project to improve EFL’s scene graph. However, most of the lessons are relevant to anyone optimizing for wearables on any platform (see the ELC video below).

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GTK+ 3.22.13 and WebKitGTK+ 2.16.2

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Development
GNU
GNOME
  • GTK+ 3.22.13 Introduces More Wayland Improvements, Fixes for Some Memory Leaks

    While work on the major GTK+ 4 series advances at a slow pace, the GTK+ 3.22 stable branch is still being updated, and today we see the launch of yet another bugfix release, the thirteenth in the series.

    GTK+ 3.22.13 is a maintenance release that adds a month's worth of fixes and updated translations from various contributors. The bug fixes are typically small but significant and include a memory leak fix for the Wayland display server when exporting handle, a memory leak fix for linkbutton, and a quartz backend segfault fix, which was a regression from last month's point release, GTK+ 3.22.12.

  • WebKitGTK+ 2.16.2 Updates User Agent Quirks for New Google Login Page, YouTube

    WebKitGTK+, the open-source and full-featured port of the WebKit rendering engine to the GTK+ GUI toolkit used to build modern applications for the GNOME desktop environment was updated today to version 2.16.2.

    WebKitGTK+ 2.16.2 is just a small bugfix release that only resolves some of the issues users reported since the first maintenance update of the WebKitGTK+ 2.16 stable series. The most prominent change being improved user agent quirks to add compatibility for Google's new login page and YouTube.

Git 2.13 has been released

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Development
  • Git 2.13 has been released

    The open source Git project has just released Git 2.13.0, with features and bugfixes from over 65 contributors. Before we dig into the new features, we have a brief security announcement.

  • Git 2.13 Released, Adds SHA-1 Collision Detection

    Git 2.13 is now available as the latest version of this widely-used, open-source version control system.

  • Git 2.13 Source Code Management System Released with SHA-1 Collision Detection

    The Git project, through Jeff King, happily announced today the release and immediate availability of the Git 2.13 open source project management system for all supported platforms.

    As expected, Git 2.13 is a major update that adds numerous improvements, new features, and countless bug fixes from more than 65 contributors. It's now considered the new stable branch and it's a recommended update for all users on all platforms, including GNU/Linux, macOS, and Microsoft Windows. However, this version comes with a security announcement about a vulnerability in "git shell."

    "For those running their own Git hosting server, Git 2.13 fixes a vulnerability in the git shell program in which an untrusted Git user can potentially run shell commands on a remote host. This only affects you if you're running a hosting server and have specifically configured git shell. If none of that makes sense to you, you're probably fine," said Jeff King, Open Source Software Developer at GitHub.

Oracle fires Java warning at IBM and Red Hat

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Development
  • Oracle fires Java warning at IBM and Red Hat

    Oracle has hit out at IBM and Red Hat Middleware for their continued opposition to its proposed plan to make Java modular.

    Mark Reinhold, Oracle’s Java Platform chief, has called IBM’s position on the Java 9 Module System (JPMS) "disappointing", "surprising" and a threat to Java.

    IBM has suggested it will vote against the JPMS JSR that Reinhold leads – JSR 376. The result for the Community vote on JPMS is due to be announced on June 8.

  • Falcon: A New, Faster JIT Compiler For Java/JVM

    Last week Azul Systems released a new version of its Zing runtime for Java. With the new version of Zing comes a new JIT compiler dubbed "Falcon" for offering faster Java performance.

Development News

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Development
  • Declarative vs. Imperative paradigms

    At first glance you will notice that one of these remotes is dark, and the other is light. You might also notice that my photography skills are terrible. Neither of these facts is very important to the discussion at hand. Is there anything interesting that you can infer?

  • NASA wants YOU (to make its Fortran code run faster)

    NASA has teamed up with two technology crowdsourcing organizations in an effort to put some of its supercomputer code into afterburner mode. In an announcement on May 2, the director of NASA's Transformative Aeronautics Concepts Program (TACP) launched the High Performance Fast Computing Challenge, an effort to accelerate NASA's Modern Fortran-based computational fluid dynamics (CFD) software, FUN3D.

  • RcppEigen 0.3.3.3.0
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GNOME News: Black Lab Drops GNOME and Further GNOME Experiments in Meson

  • Ubuntu-Based Black Lab Enterprise Linux 11.0.1 Drops GNOME 3 for MATE Desktop
    Coming about two weeks after the release of Black Lab Enterprise Linux 11, which is based on the Ubuntu 16.04.2 LTS (Xenial Xerus) operating system using the HWE (hardware enablement) kernel from Ubuntu 16.10 (Yakkety Yak), Black Lab Enterprise Linux 11.0.1 appears to be an unexpected maintenance update addressing a few important issues reported by users lately.
  • 3.26 Developments
    My approach to development can often differ from my peers. I prefer to spend the early phase of a cycle doing lots of prototypes of various features we plan to implement. That allows me to have the confidence necessary to know early in the cycle what I can finish and where to ask for help.
  • Further experiments in Meson
    Meson is definitely getting more traction in GNOME (and other projects), with many components adding support for it in parallel to autotools, or outright switching to it. There are still bugs, here and there, and we definitely need to improve build environments — like Continuous — to support Meson out of the box, but all in all I’m really happy about not having to deal with autotools any more, as well as being able to build the G* stack much more quickly when doing continuous integration.

Fedora and Red Hat

Debian and Derivatives

  • Reproducible Builds: week 108 in Stretch cycle
  • Debuerreotype
    The project is named “Debuerreotype” as an homage to the photography roots of the word “snapshot” and the daguerreotype process which was an early method of taking photographs. The essential goal is to create “photographs” of a minimal Debian rootfs, so the name seemed appropriate (even if it’s a bit on the “mouthful” side).
  • The end of Parsix GNU/Linux
    The Debian-based Parsix distribution has announced that it will be shutting down six months after the Debian "Stretch" release.
  • Privacy-focused Debian 9 'Stretch' Linux-based operating system Tails 3.0 reaches RC status
    If you want to keep the government and other people out of your business when surfing the web, Tails is an excellent choice. The Linux-based operating system exists solely for privacy purposes. It is designed to run from read-only media such as a DVD, so that there are limited possibilities of leaving a trail. Of course, even though it isn't ideal, you can run it from a USB flash drive too, as optical drives have largely fallen out of favor with consumers. Today, Tails achieves an important milestone. Version 3.0 reaches RC status -- meaning the first release candidate (RC1). In other words, it may soon be ready for a stable release -- if testing confirms as much. If you want to test it and provide feedback, you can download the ISO now.