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Software

Software: Adoption of Flatpak vs Snap, CoreOS, Markdown, VPN and Proprietary

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Software
  • Adoption of Flatpak vs Snap (2018 edition)

    Because Flatpak comes in two types, regular release (0.11.x) and “Stable” (=LTS, 0.10.x), the latest Stable release counts as well. With Flatpak 0.11.8’s hotfix only released 4 hours ago, it could not have passed the QA of any serious distribution, so 0.11.7 counts as latest for now.

    Green means the latest version is in an official repository.
    Yellow means that either the latest version is in an add-on repo or the package is in an official repository but with some problems.
    Red means either not available at all or in some barely maintained (or even abandoned) add-on repository.

  • Red Hat’s CoreOS Unit Releases App Metering Tool

    When Red Hat acquired application container specialist CoreOS in January, it was looking to leverage the startup’s energetic development team churning out open-source tools for agile cloud computing.

    Those efforts appear to be bearing fruit with the release of several “operator” tools designed for container-based application development and for monitoring cloud consumption.

    The Red Hat unit recently released to the open source community an “Operator Framework” for building applications with Kubernetes. This week, it launched an “Operator Metering” tool for tracking cloud usage and costs. The entire tool kit is intended to help operators manage and scale Kubernetes operations without breaking the bank.

  • Markdown – style text on the web

    Markdown is a plain text formatting syntax created by John Gruber in 2004. It’s designed to be easy-to-read and easy-to-write.

    Readability is at the very heart of Markdown. It offers the advantages of plain text, provides a convenient format for writing for the web, but it’s not intended to be a replacement for HTML. Markdown is a writing format, not a publishing format. You control the display of the document; formatting words as bold or italic, adding images, and creating lists are just a few of the things we can do with Markdown. Mostly, Markdown is just regular text with a few non-alphabetic characters included, such as # or *.

  • The best Linux VPN 2018

    For obvious reasons, Linux tends to attract users who are more tech savvy and privacy aware than most Windows or macOS users, which makes a VPN a pretty natural fit for the operating system.

    Unfortunately, only a few VPN providers actually offer dedicated software clients for Linux, and if you don't opt for one of them you'll be stuck fiddling around in the system console (not that that's anything new to Linux users, of course...). With that in mind we've rounded up the best VPNs for Linux with a dedicated app, along with a few that don't.

  • Cities: Skylines - Good Traffic Guide

    This splendid city building simulation is no stranger to Dedoimedo. I've talked about the game at length, covering both the original release and the combined After Dark and Snowfall expansions, and recently also covered the relatively new Mass Transit DLC. But that's not all. We have also talked about traffic management. A lot.

    Like most urban simulators, the game places heavy focus on the road infrastructure - let's face it, a city cannot function without transportation, and everything else is a derivative of the tarmac grid, even if you do not really use grids in your games, ha ha. I've shed some personal advice on how to handle smooth flowing traffic against organic city growth, and the use of underground tunnels to achieve extra throughput and better aesthetics in your cities. Now, with Mass Transit offering a whole new range of additional transport technologies, I wanted to compile a complete guide on making your traffic perfect. Let us.

  • Google Chrome 68 Enters Beta with New "Add to Home Screen" Behavior for PWAs

    Google has promoted the upcoming Chrome 68 web browser to the Chrome Beta channel on Thursday for Chrome OS, Linux, Android, Chrome OS, macOS, and Windows platforms.

    Chrome 68 promises to be yet another incremental update that introduces new APIs (Application Programming Interfaces) for developers, namely the Payment Handler API and the Page Lifecycle API, as well as an improved "add to home screen" behavior for PWAs (Progressive Web Apps) that allows users to add them to the home screen on their Android devices.

Software: GNU/Linux, Chrome, and Mozilla/Firefox

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Google
Software
Moz/FF
  • Read Ebooks Quicker With This Spritz-Like Fast Reading Command Line Software

    Uniread aims at improving your reading speed by using a Spritz-like technique for fast reading. The application uses Node.js, runs on the command line, and it currently supports the EPUB ebook file format.

    According to Spritzinc, when you read "the eye seeks a certain point within the word, which we call the optimal recognition point, or ORP. After your eyes find the ORP, your brain starts to process the meaning of the word that you're viewing".

    They continue to mention that "when reading, only around 20% of your time is spent processing content. The remaining 80% is spent physically moving your eyes from word to word and scanning for the next ORP".

    This is where the Spritz-like technique / software comes in. Using it, you can read the text without moving your eyes and thus, improve your reading speed (thanks to the 80% of time gained from not having to move your eyes and by increasing the speed at which words are being displayed on screen).

  • Linux Release Roundup: Curlew, Cantata & Google Chrome

    Another week, another batch of welcome Linux app updates to round-up — and another one of these rather difficult post intros to write!

    This week we’re taking in updates from a diverse range of apps: from a nifty media converter to a nimble music player, by way of a largely unknown web browser called “Google Chrome”.

    Yes, that was an attempt at sarcasm.

  • Chrome 68 Beta: add to home screen, payment handler, page lifecycle

    Unless otherwise noted, changes described below apply to the newest Chrome Beta channel release for Android, Chrome OS, Linux, macOS, and Windows. View a complete list of the features in Chrome 68 on ChromeStatus.com. Chrome 68 is beta as of June 7, 2018.

  • Chrome 68 Rolls Out In Beta Form

    For those not satisfied by last week's Chrome 67 stable release, Chrome 68 is now available in beta form with the latest and greatest feature work.

  • @media, MathML, and Django 1.11: MDN Changelog for May 2018
  • What is Standup?

    Standup is a system for capturing standup-style posts from individuals making it easier to see what's going on for teams and projects. It has an associated IRC bot standups for posting messages from IRC.

  • Paris, Munich, & Dresden: Help Us Give the Web a Voice!

    In July, our Voice Assistant Team will be in France and Germany to explore trust and technology adoption. We’re particularly interested in how people use voice assistants and how people listen to content like Pocket and podcasts. We would like to learn more how you use technology and how a voice assistant or voice user interface (VUIs) could improve your Internet and open web experiences. We will be conducting a series of in-home interviews and participatory design sessions. No prior voice assistant experience needed!

Timekpr Revived: Easy To Use Parental Control Software For Ubuntu

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Software

Using Timekpr Revived, you can control the computer usage for certain user accounts by setting some predefined access rules.

Timekpr Revived is a fork of the old Timkpr application, which was initially updated with Ubuntu Unity support, but later received many other improvements, including porting the UI to GTK3, support for newer Ubuntu versions, and so on.

In recent weeks, Timekpr Revived has received support for KDE Plasma (the developer tested it in Kubuntu 18.04), as well as some important Ubuntu 18.04 (Gnome) fixes. As a result, Timekpr now runs in Unity, Gnome, KDE, Xfce, and MATE. Since I use Gnome, that's the only desktop environment in which I personally tried it though (on Ubuntu 18.04).

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darktable 2.4.4 and Nvidia 390.67 Graphics Driver

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Graphics/Benchmarks
Software
  • darktable 2.4.4 released

    we’re proud to announce the fourth bugfix release for the 2.4 series of darktable, 2.4.4!

  • darktable 2.4.4 Adds 50% Zoom Option in Darkroom Mode, Better Sony a6500 Support

    The open-source and cross-platform darktable RAW image editor was updated to version 2.4.4, a release that introduces two new features, improved camera support, and lots of bug fixes.

    The most prominent new features in darktable 2.4.4 are an all-new 50% zoom option that was implemented in the darkroom mode to the navigation drop-down and the ability to set the radius when (de)selecting lines in the perspective correction feature. It also updates the German and Russian language translations.

    Additionally, darktable 2.4.4 adds white balance presets for the Sony a6500 Alpha mirrorless digital camera (Sony ILCE-6500), as well as noise profiles for the Canon EOS 800D, Canon EOS Kiss X9i, Canon EOS Rebel T7i, Nikon COOLPIX B700, Nikon D5600, and Olympus TG-5 digital camera.

  • NVIDIA 390.67 Linux Driver Released WIth X.Org Server 1.20 Support, Bug Fixes

    The NVIDIA 390.67 Linux driver is now available as the latest "long-term" series driver release for those sticking to that over the newer but short-term NVIDIA 396 driver series.

  • Nvidia 390.67 Graphics Driver Released for Linux, FreeBSD, and Solaris Gamers

    Nvidia released a new long-lived branch of its proprietary graphics drivers for GNU/Linux, FreeBSD, and Solaris operating systems to add support for the recently released X.Org Server 1.20 display server and various other improvements.

    The Nvidia GeForce 390.67 proprietary graphics driver is currently the most advanced long-lived branch, recommended to all users with a Nvidia graphics card. According to the changelog, the biggest new feature of the Nvidia GeForce 390.67 graphics driver is support for the X.Org Server 1.20 display server (ABI 24), though it also improves the script that checks for kern.log for Debian-based distributions.

A friendly alternative to the find tool in Linux

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Software

fd is a super fast, Rust-based alternative to the Unix/Linux find command. It does not mirror all of find's powerful functionality; however, it does provide just enough features to cover 80% of the use cases you might run into. Features like a well thought-out and convenient syntax, colorized output, smart case, regular expressions, and parallel command execution make fd a more than capable successor.

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FOSS Project Spotlight: WallpaperDownloader

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Software

Are you bored with the look of your desktop? Are the wallpapers that come with your distro enough for you? WallpaperDownloader is a graphical application that will help you customize your desktop and find wallpapers automatically.

WallpaperDownloader allows you to download, manage and change your favorite wallpapers from the internet. It is open source (GPL3) and totally free. Simply type in some keywords, enable the providers to include (up to six), select the download policy, and WallpaperDownloader does the rest.

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Pyradio - Play your Favorite Radio Station from Linux Terminal

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Software
  • Pyradio - Play your Favorite Radio Station from Linux Terminal

    Pyradio is a free and open source Python-based command line tool that allows you to play your favorite radio station online. We'll take you through the installation of Pyradio and how to play your favorite radio station online from Ubuntu Linux terminal. We have tested this installation on Ubuntu 18.04 version.

  • Why Do So Many Linux Users Prefer the Command Line to a GUI?

    I work with GUI apps more often than I do with the CLI but it is how I do my most important dev tasks. The command line interface arguably has a steep learning curve but once you get the hang of it you will love it because it will become second nature.

Software: 10 Linux Apps I Can’t Live Without, GitHub Alternatives, BootISO, fkill, Gifcurry

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Software
  • 10 Linux Apps I Can’t Live Without

    10 Linux Apps I Can’t Live Without. Yes, I forgot to switch scenes during LibreOffice and Kdenlive because allergy meds brain. However, the applications are must haves for my workflow. What about you? Which Linux apps are must haves for you?

  • 6 Github alternatives that is open source and self-hosted

    And there you have it, six Github alternatives that you can host on your Linux or Unix server. No need to depend on the cloud or worry about Microsoft looking into your codebase.

  • 10 Best GitHub Alternatives to Host Open Source Projects

    Github is a powerful, secure and the most popular online platform for hosting software projects for version control using Git. It is particularly well known as a development platform for open source projects, however, Github supports private repositories as well.

    With Microsoft reportedly acquiring Github, many open source enthusiast are probably weary of this acquisition, knowing very well that Microsoft is a for-profit company, and who knows, terms and conditions are bound to change (as is always the case with such deals) concerning the world’s leading software development platform.

    If you are one of those already thinking of alternatives to Github for hosting your open source project(s), then check out the list below.

  • BootISO – A Simple Bash Script To Securely Create A Bootable USB Device From ISO File

    Most of us (including me) very often create a bootable USB device from ISO file for OS installation.

    There are many applications freely available in Linux for this purpose. Even we wrote few of the utility in the past.

    Every one uses different application and each application has their own features and functionality.

    In that few of applications are belongs to CLI and few of them associated with GUI.

  • fkill – Interactively Kill Processes in Linux

    Fkill-cli is a free open source, simple and cross-platform command line tool designed to interactively kill processes in Linux, developed using Nodejs. It also runs on Windows and MacOS X operating systems. It requires a process ID (PID) or process name to kill it.

  • Gifcurry – An Open Source Video to Gif Maker

    Gifcurry is an open-source Haskell-based video app with which you can create GIFs from video files. You can use it to edit videos by trimming, cropping, adding texts and fonts to them. Also, you can set size limits on the GIFs you create.

    Gifcurry is free, open-source, and it features both a Command Line and Graphical User Interface. If you don’t have a video-to-GIF app on your machine then you might never have to look for one again.

Software: Music and More

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Software
  • 10 Applications Every Linux Using Musician Should Know About

    When it comes to creativity, people are always assuming that a Mac is best, even in today’s Windows-centric ecosystem. As a result, so few people actually know about the diverse landscape of Linux-based tools and suites available, most of which for free.

  • rra-c-util 7.2

    rra-c-util is my collection of portability and utility code that I reuse in all the C and Perl projects I maintain.

    Most of the changes in this release are Autoconf macro improvements prompted by Julien ÉLIE. This release incorporates his work on RRA_PROG_PYTHON, RRA_LIB_PYTHON, and RRA_PYTHON_MODULE macros, which support both Python 2 and Python 3. It also improves the RRA_PROG_PERL macro to make PERL a substitution variable and to check that building against libperl actually works. Finally, RRA_LIB_BDB, RRA_LIB_OPENSSL, RRA_LIB_SASL, and RRA_LIB_ZLIB now check that the headers for the library are found as well as the library itself (based on Julien's work in INN).

  • wallet 1.4

    wallet is a secret management system that I developed at Stanford, primarily to distribute keytab management. As mentioned in an earlier post, I'm not entirely sure it has significant advantages over Vault, but it does handle Kerberos natively and we're still using it for some things, so I'm still maintaining it.

  • Why use SaltStack for automation and orchestration

    Thomas S. Hatch released Salt, aka the SaltStack Platform, in 2011 after becoming frustrated with the (slow) speed of the Ruby-based open source configuration management systems available at the time, including Puppet and Chef. Hatch used the open source ZeroMQ messaging library for networking and Python as the implementation language. Later the more scalable RAET (Reliable Asynchronous Event Transport Protocol) transport was developed as an alternative message queue.

Top GitHub Alternatives to Host Your Open Source Project

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Software

If you are looking to migrate from GitHub, here are some of the best alternatives to GitHub for hosting the source code of your open source project.
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Today in Techrights

Security: SSL, Microsoft Windows TCO, Security Breach Detection and SIM Hijackers

  • Why Does Google Chrome Say Websites Are “Not Secure”?
    Starting with Chrome 68, Google Chrome labels all non-HTTPS websites as “Not Secure.” Nothing else has changed—HTTP websites are just as secure as they’ve always been—but Google is giving the entire web a shove towards secure, encrypted connections.
  • Biggest Voting Machine Maker Admits -- Ooops -- That It Installed Remote Access Software After First Denying It [Ed: Microsoft Windows TCO]
    We've been covering the mess that is electronic voting machines for nearly two decades on Techdirt, and the one thing that still flummoxes me is how are they so bad at this after all these years? And I don't mean "bad at security" -- though, that's part of it -- but I really mean "bad at understanding how insecure their machines really are." For a while everyone focused on Diebold, but Election Systems and Software (ES&S) has long been a bigger player in the space, and had just as many issues. It just got less attention. There was even a brief period of time where ES&S bought what remained of Diebold's flailing e-voting business before having to sell off the assets to deal with an antitrust lawsuit by the DOJ. What's incredible, though, is that every credible computer security person has said that it is literally impossible to build a secure fully electronic voting system -- and if you must have one at all, it must have a printed paper audit trail and not be accessible from the internet. Now, as Kim Zetter at Motherboard has reported, ES&S -- under questioning from Senator Ron Wyden -- has now admitted that it installed remote access software on its voting machines, something the company had vehemently denied to the same reporter just a few months ago.
  • Bringing cybersecurity to the DNC [Ed: Microsoft Windows TCO. Microsoft Exchange was used.]
    When Raffi Krikorian joined the Democratic National Committee (DNC) as chief technology officer, the party was still reeling from its devastating loss in 2016 — and the stunning cyberattacks that resulted in high-level officials’ emails being embarrassingly leaked online.
  • Getting Started with Successful Security Breach Detection
    Organizations historically believed that security software and tools were effective at protecting them from hackers. Today, this is no longer the case, as modern businesses are now connected in a digital global supply ecosystem with a web of connections to customers and suppliers. Often, organizations are attacked as part of a larger attack on one of their customers or suppliers. They represent low hanging fruit for hackers, as many organizations have not invested in operationalizing security breach detection. As this new reality takes hold in the marketplace, many will be tempted to invest in new technology tools to plug the perceived security hole and move on with their current activities. However, this approach is doomed to fail. Security is not a "set it and forget it" type of thing. Defending an organization from a breach requires a careful balance of tools and operational practices -- operational practices being the more important element.
  • The SIM Hijackers

    By hijacking Rachel’s phone number, the hackers were able to seize not only Rachel’s Instagram, but her Amazon, Ebay, Paypal, Netflix, and Hulu accounts too. None of the security measures Rachel took to secure some of those accounts, including two-factor authentication, mattered once the hackers took control of her phone number.

GNU/Linux Desktops/Laptops and Windows Spying

  • Changes [Pop!_OS]

    For the last 12 years, my main development machine has been a Mac. As of last week, it’s a Dell XPS 13 running Pop!_OS 18.04.

    [...]

    Take note: this is the first operating system I’ve used that is simpler, more elegant, and does certain things better than macOS.

  • System76 Opens Manufacturing Facility to Build Linux Laptops
    As it turns out, System76 is making the transition from a Linux-based computer seller, into a complete Linux-based computer manufacturer. The Twitter photos are from their new manufacturing facility. This means that System76 will no longer be slapping their logo on other company’s laptops and shipping them out, but making their own in-house laptops for consumers.
  • Extension adding Windows Timeline support to third-party browsers should have raised more privacy questions
    Windows Timeline is a unified activity history explorer that received a prominent placement next to the Start menu button in Windows 10 earlier this year. You can see all your activities including your web browser history and app activity across all your Windows devices in one place; and pickup and resume activities you were doing on other devices. This is a useful and cool feature, but it’s also a privacy nightmare. You may have read about a cool new browser extension that adds your web browsing history from third-party web browsers — including Firefox, Google Chrome, Vivaldi, and others — to Windows Timeline. The extension attracted some media attention from outlets like MSPoweruser, Neowin, The Verge, and Windows Central.

Public money, public code? FSFE spearheads open-source initiative

Last September, the non-profit Free Software Foundation Europe (FSFE) launched a new campaign that calls for EU-wide legislation that requires publicly financed software developed for the public sector to be made publicly available under a free and open-source software license. According to the ‘Public Money, Public Code’ open letter, free and open-source software in the public sector would enable anyone to “use, study, share, and improve applications used on a daily basis”. The initiative, says the non-profit, would provide safeguards against public sector organizations being locked into services from specific companies that use “restrictive licenses” to hinder competition. The FSFE also says the open-source model would help improve security in the public sector, as it would allow backdoors and other vulnerabilities to fixed quickly, without depending on one single service provider. Since its launch, the Public Money, Public Code initiative has gained the support of 150 organizations, including WordPress Foundation, Wikimedia Foundation, and Tor, along with nearly 18,000 individuals. With the initiative now approaching its first anniversary, The Daily Swig caught up with FSFE spokesperson Paul Brown, who discussed the campaign’s progress. Read more