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Sci/Tech

More Statistics

Filed under
KDE
Software
Sci/Tech

Right now the feature set of LabPlot that can be used for the statistical analysis is very limited – we only show some values from the descriptive statistics for the selected data set in the spreadsheet. While we’re thinking about which features to add and which workflows to enable in our application to support this kind of analysis in near future, we decided to implement and to add some “quick wins” now.

[...]

The next natural step for this feature would be to enable this functionality in the worksheet and to extend it. E.g., it should be possible for the user to create such a Q-Q plot on the worksheet and to specify which probability distribution to use to compare the data set quantiles against. Similar for the KDE-plot where it should be possible to specify the kernel or for the box plot where the user can modify the type of the whiskers, etc.

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Third time's a harm? Microsoft tries to get twice-rejected compression patent past skeptical examiners

Filed under
Microsoft
Sci/Tech
Legal

In June, 2019, Microsoft applied for a US patent covering enhancements to a data encoding method known as rANS, one of several variants in the Asymmetric Numeral System (ANS) family that form the foundation of data compression schemes used by Apple, Facebook, Google, various other companies, and open source projects.

Its US patent application was published on the last day of 2020. Recently, the inventor of ANS, Jarosław Duda, assistant professor at Institute of Computer Science at Jagiellonian University in Poland, expressed concern that if Microsoft's patent application is granted, anyone using software that incorporates an ANS-based encoder could be at risk of a potential infringement claim.

[...]

"Google ended up abandoning that application," said Alex Moss, staff attorney for the EFF and Mark Cuban Chair to Eliminate Stupid Patents, in an email to The Register. "But it looks like Microsoft picked up right where it left off."

"Professor Duda’s concerns about the Microsoft application are similarly well-founded: these are broad claims that implicate practically any use of ANS without adding anything new and non-obvious," said Moss.

The USPTO has already said as much, Moss explained: It has rejected this application twice before, including a final rejection for obviousness.

The USPTO issued a non-final rejection of the application on May 21, 2020. Microsoft sought a review of the decision and the patent agency then issued a final rejection on October 27, 2020.

Yet on March 2, 2021, Microsoft tried one more time to get its patent application approved. In a USPTO explanatory filing, attorney Kyle Rinehart said, "The Applicant respectfully disagrees with the rejections."

"Microsoft’s recent filing takes advantage of what’s called the "After Final Consideration Pilot 2.0" program," Moss explained. "This program was started under former Director of the Patent Office, Andrei Iancu, and before leaving office, he extended the program through September 30, 2021."

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How to visualize complex data on Linux

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Sci/Tech
HowTos

You’ve probably heard of Elasticsearch – the search engine that enables you to index and then quickly search through your data. You may have created a few visualizations in Kibana, the GUI for Elasticsearch, pointing and clicking your way through the sleek interface.

What you may not have used is a lesser-known visualization plugin called Timelion.

Timelion is a fantastic visualization creation tool that makes it possible to write out your queries in its simple and powerful expression language to display graphs. It’s used for displaying time-series data such as population growth or hits to your website.

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Google works with a Debian developer to make COVID-19 research easier on Linux

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Debian
Sci/Tech

Medical research surrounding COVID-19 isn't over though, as scientists still have plenty of work to do. Olek Wojnar, a developer of the Linux-based Debian operating system, has been working to help these scientists by packaging some software for easy installation on Linux. One of those packages was Google's build software Bazel. Upon finding out about Wojnar's efforts, Google offered to help with the process.

"The Bazel team jumped in to help Olek and the COVID-19 research community. Yun Peng, Software Engineer at Google with Olek Wojnar led the team of Bazel and Debian volunteers to move the project forward. The joint effort between Debian and Google has produced some great results, including packaging the Bazel bootstrap variant in 6 months time (Debian 11 -- released in Late 2021; Ubuntu 21.04 -- 22 April 2021)," explains Google.

The search giant further says, "Bazel is now available as an easy to install package distributed on Debian and Ubuntu. The extended Google team continues to work with Debian towards the next step of packaging and distributing Tensorflow on Debian and other Linux distributions."

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Linux Has Landed On Mars

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Sci/Tech

NASA has landed a new rover called Perseverance on Mars. It has it's own miniature helicopter named Ingenuity that can take off, navigate, and land on Mars without human intervention. Ingenuity runs a custom Linux-based operating system, Linux has now reached Mars.

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Accurate Conclusions from Bogus Data: Methodological Issues in “Collaboration in the open-source arena: The WebKit case”

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Sci/Tech

Nearly five years ago, when I was in grad school, I stumbled across the paper Collaboration in the open-source arena: The WebKit case when trying to figure out what I would do for a course project in network theory (i.e. graph theory, not computer networking; I’ll use the words “graph” and “network” interchangeably). The paper evaluates collaboration networks, which are graphs where collaborators are represented by nodes and relationships between collaborators are represented by edges. Our professor had used collaboration networks as examples during lecture, so it seemed at least mildly relevant to our class, and I wound up writing a critique on this paper for the class project. In this paper, the authors construct collaboration networks for WebKit by examining the project’s changelog files to define relationships between developers. They perform “community detection” to visually group developers who work closely together into separate clusters in the graphs. Then, the authors use those graphs to arrive at various conclusions about WebKit (e.g. “[e]ven if Samsung and Apple are involved in expensive patent wars in the courts and stopped collaborating on hardware components, their contributions remained strong and central within the WebKit open source project,” regarding the period from 2008 to 2013).

At the time, I contacted the authors to let them know about some serious problems I found with their work. Then I left the paper sitting in a short-term to-do pile on my desk, where it has been sitting since Obama was president, waiting for me to finally write this blog post. Unfortunately, nearly five years later, the authors’ email addresses no longer work, which is not very surprising after so long — since I’m no longer a student, the email I originally used to contact them doesn’t work anymore either — so I was unable to contact them again to let them know that I was finally going to publish this blog post. Anyway, suffice to say that the conclusions of the paper were all correct; however, the networks used to arrive at those conclusions suffered from three different mistakes, each of which was, on its own, serious enough to invalidate the entire work.

So if the analysis of the networks was bogus, how did the authors arrive at correct conclusions anyway? The answer is confirmation bias. The study was performed by visually looking at networks and then coming to non-rigorous conclusions about the networks, and by researching the WebKit community to learn what is going on with the major companies involved in the project. The authors arrived at correct conclusions because they did a good job at the later, then saw what they wanted to see in the graphs.

I don’t want to be too harsh on the authors of this paper, though, because they decided to publish their raw data and methodology on the internet. They even published the python scripts they used to convert WebKit changelogs into collaboration graphs. Had they not done so, there is no way I would have noticed the third (and most important) mistake that I’ll discuss below, and I wouldn’t have been able to confirm my suspicions about the second mistake. You would not be reading this right now, and likely nobody would ever have realized the problems with the paper. The authors of most scientific papers are not nearly so transparent: many researchers today consider their source code and raw data to be either proprietary secrets to be guarded, or simply not important enough to merit publication. The authors of this paper deserve to be commended, not penalized, for their openness. Mistakes are normal in research papers, and open data is by far the best way for us to be able to detect mistakes when they happen.

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LabPlot 2.8.1 released

Filed under
KDE
Software
Sci/Tech

We’re happy to announce the availability of the first minor patch release of the big release we made two months ago. This release contains minor improvements and bug fixes only.

In the plot we now allow to change the background color for axis labels. This is useful if you place the axis labels above the axis line and don’t want to see an underlying line in the bounding box of the label. The default setting is that the background remain transparent.

For the cursor, the tool used to measure positions and distances in the plots, we now allow you to copy the values in the result window to the clipboard.

When pasting new values into LabPlot’s spreadsheet, the auto-detection of the datatime format has been improved. We now better recognize the different formats produced in external programs and being pasted into LabPlot.

Many smaller improvements were included in the dialog for the creation of the live-data sources related to the handling of errors coming from remote servers like MQTT brokers, etc. Besides the more stable behavior, the user now also gets clearer notifications about what went wrong. Furthermore, when reading live data it is possible to generate the timestamp column in LabPlot for the data being read also for TCP and UDP network sources. This was only possible for MQTT sources in the past.

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JASP: A Less Complicated Free Open-source SPSS Alternative for Advanced Statistics

Filed under
Software
Sci/Tech

I had a run with many open-source statistics software and packages, but JASP was truly unique among them.

JASP is a free open-source complete statistical package supported by University of Amsterdam. It's a multi-platform program that runs on Windows, Linux and macOS.

It's designed for users who want to do some statistical work without having to deal with programming or dive deep in learning complex statistical programs. It's a recommended option for students and researchers.

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Senaite: An Open-source Enterprise-grade Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS)

Filed under
OSS
Sci/Tech

Senaite is a free open-source self-hosted laboratory information management system (LIMS) that built for enterprise. It offers several features which are cost and resources effective with a rich set of add-ons and a strong supportive community of developers behind it.

In this article we demonstrate Senaite's features and how it helps enterprise through an efficient management for labs, lab equipments and reduce the turnaround time.

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NASA ROSES-20 Amendment 64: Release of Final text of E.8 Supplemental Open Source Software Awards

Filed under
OSS
Sci/Tech
Legal

Supplemental open source software awards are used to encourage the conversion of legacy software into modern code to be released under a generally accepted, open source license (e.g., Apache-2, BSD-2-clause, GPL). The supplement would add a software component to their previously selected "parent" research and analysis award.

ROSES-2020 Amendment 64 Releases Final text for E.8 Supplemental Open Source Software Awards. Notices of Intent are not requested. Proposals will be accepted on a rolling basis with a final due date of April 14, 2021.

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More in Tux Machines

pg_statement_rollback v1.3 released

pg_statement_rollback is a PostgreSQL extension to add server side transaction with rollback at statement level like in Oracle or DB2. Release v1.3 of pg_statement_rollback was released. This is a maintenance release to add support to PostgreSQL 14. See ChangeLog for a complete list of changes. Read more Also: PostgreSQL Weekly News - October 24, 2021

Review: Ubuntu 21.10

Ubuntu 21.10 (code name Impish Indri) and its many variant flavors were released on October 14. This release is a non-Long Term Support release, meaning it will be supported for nine months. Like all new releases of Ubuntu, Ubuntu 21.10 comes with numerous updates and enhancements. The most notable of these changes are the customized GNOME 40 desktop and Firefox being a Snap instead of a Deb package. Both of these changes are explored in depth in this review. Installing Ubuntu 21.10 I began by downloading the 2.9GB ISO and copying it to a flash drive. Booting the computer from the flash drive resulted in an extremely familiar experience. Unfortunately, the new installer currently being worked on did not make it into this release, so Ubuntu 21.10 still provides the same installation experience as all the recent releases of Ubuntu. Read more

Indie dev finds that Linux users generate more, better bug reports

An indie developer has found an interesting observation: Though only 5.8% of his game's buyers were playing on Linux, they generated over 38% of the bug reports. Not because the Linux platform was buggier, either. Only 3 of the roughly 400 bug reports submitted by Linux users were platform specific, that is, would only happen on Linux. The developer, posting as Koderski for developer Kodera Software on Reddit, makes indie game ΔV: Rings of Saturn—that's Delta V, or DV, for the non-rocket-science-literate. It's a hard science, physics-based space mining and piracy game that I quite like, personally, for its blend of playability that still honors the basics of spaceflight. If you quite like the space combat of, say, The Expanse, DV is a sim that might be for you. Koderski says he's sold a little over 12,000 copies of his game, and about 700 of those were bought by Linux players. "I got 1040 bug reports in total, out of which roughly 400 are made by Linux players," says Koderski's post. "That’s one report per 11.5 users on average, and one report per 1.75 Linux players. That’s right, an average Linux player will get you 650% more bug reports." Koderski's numbers are a limited sample size drawn from one person's experience, but tell a compelling story. Read more

today's howtos

  • How to use and install Stremio on Linux

    Stremio is a media center that allows users to watch movies, TV shows, and even YouTube videos instantaneously. It also supports DLNA and many other features. Here’s how to use Stremio on Linux.

  • Deploying containers with Consfigurator

    For some months now I’ve been working on some patches to Consfigurator to add support for Linux containers. My goal is to make Consfigurator capable of both performing the initial setup of a container and of entering the running container to apply configuration. For the case of unprivileged LXCs running as non-root, my work-in-progress branch can now do both of these things. As Consfigurator enters the container directly using system calls, it should be decently fast at configuring multiple containers on a host, and it will also be possible to have it do this in parallel. The initial setup for the container uses Consfigurator’s existing support for building root filesystems, and it should be easy to extend that to support arbitrary GNU/Linux distributions by teaching Consfigurator how to invoke bootstrapping tools other than debootstrap(8).

  • Vincent Bernat: FRnOG #34: how we deployed a datacenter in one click

    The presentation, in French, was recorded. I have added English subtitles.

  • How to install FileZilla on a Chromebook

    Today we are looking at how to install FileZilla on a Chromebook. Please follow the video/audio guide as a tutorial where we explain the process step by step and use the commands below.

  • How to Install Zoom Client on Fedora 35 - LinuxCapable

    Zoom is a communications technology platform that provides videotelephony and real-time online chat services through a cloud-based peer-to-peer software platform and is used for teleconferencing, telecommuting, distance education, and much more.

  • How to Install Sails.js Framework with Nginx on Rocky Linux 8 - LinuxCapable

    Sails.js is a Javascript framework that you can use to easily and quickly build customized enterprise-grade for Node.js. It resembles the MVC architecture from such frameworks as Ruby on Rails, but with improved support for the more data-oriented modern style of developing web applications and is compatible with other front-end including Angular, React, iOS, Android, Windows Phone, and much more. In the following tutorial, you will learn how to install Sails.js and access the web-based interface by installing and configuring an Nginx reverse proxy setup on Rocky Linux 8.

  • How to Zip and Unzip Files on Android (RAR, ZIP, 7Z) - Make Tech Easier

    If your job demands that you send many large files, or if you just want an easy way to send a large number of pictures to someone, zip files are a necessity – even on your phone! This article shows how to compress or decompress large files on your Android smartphone.

  • How to Install Python Pip / PIP3 on Debian 11 Bullseye - LinuxCapable

    PIP is the standard package manager for installing Python packages. With PIP, you can list, search and download to install packages from the Python Package Index (PyPI). PIP was first included with the Python installer since version 3.4 for Python 3 release and 2.7.9 for Python 2 and is well utilized with many Python projects. In the following tutorial, you will learn how to install the PIP / PIP2 or PIP3 on Debian 11 Bullseye operating system.

  • How to Install Google Chrome on openSUSE Leap 15 - LinuxCapable

    ogle Chrome is the most used Internet Explorer software on the earth, with a recent update in 2021 that Chrome is currently the primary browser of more than 2.65 billion internet users. However, as you would know, after installing openSUSE, only Mozilla Firefox is packaged with the distribution but luckily, installing Google Chrome is a straightforward task. In the following tutorial, you will learn how to install Google Chrome in three various ways in stable, beta, or unstable versions on openSUSE Leap 15.

  • How to browse Reddit from the Linux desktop with Giara

    If you like Reddit but prefer to browse from an app, Giara may be for you. It is a Linux app that allows users to consume Reddit content from the desktop. In this guide, we’ll show you how to install it and use it on your system. Note: You must have a Reddit account to make use of the Giara application on Linux. To create a new Reddit account, head over to Reddit and click on the new “sign up” button.

  • How to Install Brave Browser on openSUSE Leap 15 - LinuxCapable

    Brave is a free and open-source web browser developed by Brave Software, Inc. based on the Chromium web browser. Brave is a privacy-focused Internet web browser, which distinguishes itself from other browsers by automatically blocking online advertisements and website trackers in its default settings. Brave has claimed its browser puts less strain on your computer’s performance than Google Chrome, regardless of how much you ask of it. Even with multiple tabs open at once, Brave uses less memory than Google Chrome-like, up to 66% less. In the following tutorial, you will learn how to install Brave on openSUSE Leap 15.

  • How to Install / Upgrade to Latest Nginx Mainline or Stable on openSUSE Leap 15 - LinuxCapable

    For those using openSUSE 15 Leap, you might have noticed that installing Nginx directly from its repository does not install the latest stable or mainline version. This is a common trend in most distributions that focus on the stability of packages and provide only urgent bug or security updates until the subsequent major distribution. For most, using the default Nginx that comes bundled with the repository will be preferred, but often many require and want the latest version of stable or mainline for updated features. The following tutorial will cover installing the last stable or mainline versions of Nginx on openSUSE 15 Leap.

  • How to Add a User to Sudoers on openSUSE - LinuxCapable

    When installing openSUSE, the user account that was created during the initial setup has sudo rights. However, there may be a need to add additional sudo users or make the default user have sudo rights. This is a straightforward process with a few commands. In the following tutorial, you will learn to add a user to the sudoers group on any openSUSE system.

  • How to easily download and install apps on Linux with AppImage Pool

    AppImagePool is an AppImageHub client for Linux. With it, users can easily browse and download AppImages from the AppImageHub store. Here’s how to get it working on your Linux system.