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Sci/Tech

Box Plot

Filed under
KDE
Sci/Tech

In one of our previous blog posts we wrote about the new development in the spreadsheet and the extension in the statistics dialog that now make use of new visualization elements. One of these elements is the Box Plot...

Of course, this new visualization type is not only available in the statistics dialog in the spreadsheet, but it can also be used in the Worksheet, in the area where LabPlot plots the data. In this blog post we will introduce this important new development, as it is going to be part of the next release.

A box plot (also known as a box-and-whisker plot) provides a quick visual summary of the important aspects of a distribution of values contained in a data set...

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Computer scientist showcases world's first RISC-V-based Linux PC coupled with an AMD RX 6700 XT GPU

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Sci/Tech

Back when Nvidia was announcing the intentions to buy ARM and many industry analysts immediately expressed their concern regarding the status of the ARM architecture that might not remain open source for too long, SiFive came out with a big push for its RISC-V CPU architecture as a true open source alternative. Similar to the Windows-on-ARM initiative, SiFive promised to deliver a general use PC platform that would allow software developers to adapt the Windows and Linux-based code for the RISC-V processors. It only took SiFive a few months to launch its first PC motherboard called the HiFive Unmatched, which is based on the U7 SoC. However, since the RISC-V community is not that big, development on the PC platform is not exactly fast. Interestingly enough, Nvidia recently managed to enable RTX 3000 support for ARM-based laptops, and, almost at the same time, a RISC-V enthusiast managed to make an AMD RX 6700 XT work on Linux-based HiFive Unmatched system.

This is essentially a double milestone for the RISC-V community. Hackster.io reports that computer scientist René Rebe first managed to make the HiFive Unmatched run Linux, and then added support for the Radeon RX 6700 XT GPU through the Mesa Gallium 21.1.5 driver. Apparently, the U7 SoC is not properly supported in Linux, but Rebe was able to work his magic and patched the Linux kernel to support both the RISC-V architecture and the RDNA2 GPU in around 10 hours. The GPU is not fully functional as of yet. It can display the GUI, can render 3D graphics in accelerated-mode and also decode hi-res videos, but cannot run games. Nevertheless, this is still an impressive achievement that is not facilitated by the SiFive team itself.

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Meet the open-source software powering NASA's Ingenuity Mars Helicopter

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Sci/Tech

So they turned to F Prime, a reusable, multi-mission flight software framework designed for CubeSats, small spacecraft, and instruments. The program was initially developed in 2013 by a team led by Tim Canham at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Southern California with the aim of creating a low-cost, portable, pliable software architecture option that would allow components written for one application to be reused easily in other applications and run on a range of processors.

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Following NetBSD, DragonFlyBSD Now Has "COVID"

Filed under
BSD
Sci/Tech

There is now covid going around the BSDs... DragonFlyBSD has ported it from NetBSD.

Yes, COVID as in COVID-19 / SARS-CoV-2 but this is actually an open-source package containing the SARS-CoV-2 genome and a manual (man page) encouraging vaccination and other steps to help prevent the spread of COVID.

DragonFlyBSD lead developer Matthew Dillon ported the covid utility from NetBSD. Following that commit this weekend was a follow-up patch for this covid utility now living in DragonFlyBSD world.

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How To Host Counter-Strike: Global Offensive Server on Ubuntu

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Sci/Tech

Counter-Strike: Global Offensive popularly known as CS: GO is one of the most popular games of all time. Released in 1999, the game involves two teams where the Terrorist team tries to plant explosives whereas the Counter-Terrorists team tries to prevent it.

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GNU Scientific Library 2.7 released

Filed under
GNU
Sci/Tech

Version 2.7 of the GNU Scientific Library (GSL) is now available. GSL provides a large collection of routines for numerical computing in C.
This release introduces some new features and fixes several bugs. The full NEWS file entry is appended below.

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Needed Free and Open Source Medicine

Filed under
GNU
Sci/Tech

So, what could be the solution? This reminds one of a similar situation in computer software when hardware prices dropped like a stone in water but software costs rose like a helium balloon and became the dominant part of the cost for anyone wishing to use a computer. This was made possible by converting software into a product which offers only the right to use, as opposed to the prevailing practice of allowing the users to do whatever they want with it, as was done in the Unix world before software became proprietary. Thus was born Free Software, launched by a prominent hacker of the time at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Mr. Richard M. Stallman under the project he called GNU’s Not Unix (with the recursive acronym GNU). This is software that gives users the freedom to use, share, study and modify. With those rights, the software became freely downloadable at zero cost, enabling anyone to use even an old computer, and thus making it accessible to virtually anyone. Today the software has grown to be the dominant one among all computing devices.

Can this be a model for medicine too? Yes, indeed. It can. In fact, there are medical systems other than modern medicine that practised this kind of openness. All traditional medical systems were open, as the concept of the ownership of knowledge, such as copyright and patent laws came only very recently. In fact, the first copyright law was enacted only in 1710 by Queen Anne of England and was known as the Statute of Anne. It was actually meant to prevent publishers from controlling the printing and sales of books to benefit only themselves. The statute sought to benefit the authors in order to encourage them to write more for the good of society. That it eventually got to be controlled by publishers is another story altogether.

The point is that, before all that happened, all knowledge was free (well, almost1), and everyone could learn whatever they wanted. Thus, medicines were often prescribed not by just a name, but by giving the recipe to prepare them. This continues to be the custom in systems like Ayurveda, Siddha and Unani systems of medicine developed in India and the Arab world and the Traditional Chinese Medicines (TCM2). But these medical systems may not be acceptable to many who are looking for scientific validation. This, unfortunately, is a drawback of these systems that were created millennia before modern science was born. But it could be easily recified if some researchers in the medical field are open-minded enough to do experiments to validate their medicines and treatment protocols, which have many pieces of anecdotal evidence of success. Alternatively, the government of India could direct its own Central Council for Research in Ayurvedic Sciences (CCRAS) to validate Ayurvedic, Siddha or Unani treatment protocols using modern scientific methods.

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Martian rover has some Linux computers, too

Filed under
Linux
Sci/Tech

NASA’s Perseverance rover is equipped with a Linux-driven, Atom-based CompuLab COMEX-IE38 module designed to compress images. The rover also has a Qualcomm 801 Linux system like its Ingenuity copter, which is embarking on a new scouting mission.

As LinuxGizmos and many other sites reported in February, NASA’s semi-autonomous Ingenuity drone copter is equipped with an embedded Linux computer based on the Qualcomm 801 (formerly Snapdragon 801). Ingenuity, which has since run several successful test flights on Mars, making it the first craft to fly in the atmosphere of an extra-terrestrial planet, uses the Qualcomm 801 via the Qualcomm Flight platform for navigation and camera control and processing.

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BREAKING NEWS: Linux Flies on Mars

Filed under
Linux
Sci/Tech

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is the American space agency responsible for the civilian space program, as well as aeronautics and space research.

A tiny and extremely lightweight helicopter, named Ingenuity, was transported to Mars in NASA’s Perseverance Rover. Ingenuity was deployed on 3 April 2021.

NASA has successfully flown this helicopter on the red planet today.

As it’s primarily a technology demonstration, Ingenuity’s first powered flight on the alien planet was brief. The Mars-copter flew to about 3m, hover, swivel and safely land in its momentous 40 second flight. But it’s a huge step forwards, paving the way for longer flights and the prospect of this technology undertaking reconnaissance missions.

[...]

This is a moment in history for us to remember. An open source operating system built by thousands flies a helicopter on another planet.

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Google operates with a Debian developer to produce COVID-19 research simpler on Linux

Filed under
Google
Debian
Sci/Tech
Ubuntu

“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),” clarifies 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.”

While Olek Wojnar deserves a lot of credit for this successful partnership, Google has clearly acquired significant praise as well. Not only has the search giant assisted amazingly in this case, yet it has for some time been a companion of both the open-source and Linux communities.

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Programming Leftovers

  • ThreatMapper: Open source platform for scanning runtime environments - Help Net Security

    Deepfence announced open source availability of ThreatMapper, a signature offering that automatically scans, maps and ranks application vulnerabilities across serverless, Kubernetes, container and multi-cloud environments.

  • Josef Strzibny: Organizing business logic in Rails with contexts

    Rails programmers have almost always tried to figure out the golden approach to business logic in their applications. From getting better at object-oriented design, to service objects, all the way to entirely new ideas like Trailblazer or leaving Active Record altogether. Here’s one more design approach that’s clean yet railsy.

  • Status update, October 2021

    On this dreary morning here in Amsterdam, I’ve made my cup of coffee and snuggled my cat, and so I’m pleased to share some FOSS news with you. Some cool news today! We’re preparing for a new core product launch at sr.ht, cool updates for our secret programming language, plus news for visurf. Simon Ser has been hard at work on expanding his soju and gamja projects for the purpose of creating a new core sourcehut product: chat.sr.ht. We’re rolling this out in a private beta at first, to seek a fuller understanding of the system’s performance characteristics, to make sure everything is well-tested and reliable, and to make plans for scaling, maintenance, and general availability. In short, chat.sr.ht is a hosted IRC bouncer which is being made available to all paid sr.ht users, and a kind of webchat gateway which will be offered to unpaid and anonymous users. I’m pretty excited about it, and looking forward to posting a more detailed announcement in a couple of weeks. In other sourcehut news, work on GraphQL continues, with paste.sr.ht landing and todo.sr.ht’s writable API in progress. Our programming langauge project grew some interesting features this month as well, the most notable of which is probably reflection. I wrote an earlier blog post which goes over this in some detail. There’s also ongoing work to develop the standard library’s time and date support, riscv64 support is essentially done, and we’ve overhauled the grammar for switch and match statements to reduce a level of indentation for typical code. In the coming weeks, I hope to see date/time support and reflection fleshed out much more, and to see some more development on the self-hosted compiler. [...] The goal of this project is to provide a conservative CSS toolkit which allows you to build web interfaces which are compatible with marginalized browsers like Netsurf and Lynx.

  • Monthly Report - September

    The month of September is very special to me personaly. Why? Well, I got married in the very same month 18 years ago. The best part is, I choose the day 11 to get married. I have never missed my wedding anniversary, thanks to all the TV news channel.

  • My Favorite Warnings: uninitialized | Tom Wyant [blogs.perl.org]

    This warning was touched on in A Belated Introduction, but I thought it deserved its own entry. When a Perl scalar comes into being, be it an actual scalar variable or an array or hash entry, its value is undef. Now, the results of operating on an undef value are perfectly well-defined: in a nuneric context it is 0, in a string context it is '', and in a Boolean context it is false. The thing is, if you actually operate on such a value, did you mean to do it, or did you forget to initialize something, or initialize the wrong thing, or operate on the wrong thing? Because of the latter possibilities Perl will warn about such operations if the uninitialized warning is enabled.

today's leftovers

  • CutefishOS Built on Ubuntu Run Through - Invidious

    In this video, we are looking at CutefishOS Built on Ubuntu.

  • CutefishOS Built on Ubuntu

    Today we are looking at CutefishOS Built on Ubuntu. It comes with Linux Kernel 5.11, based on Ubuntu 21.10, and uses about 900MB of ram when idling. Enjoy!

  • Google adds VM support to Anthos, admits not everyone is ready for containerised everything [Ed: Kubernetes becoming increasingly just an openwashing shim for proprietary software with back doors]

    Google has added support for workloads running in virtual machines to its Anthos hybrid Kubernetes platform. "While we have seen many customers make the leap to containerization, some are not quite ready to move completely off of virtual machines," wrote Google Application Modernization Platform vice-presidents Jeff Reed and Chen Goldberg. "They want a unified development platform where developers can build, modify, and deploy applications residing in both containers and VMs in a common, shared environment," the pair added.

  • The Dell Inspiron 15 3501 supports Linux

    With the Inspiron 15 3501, Dell has a 15.6-inch office laptop in its lineup with its technology housed in a slim, matte-black plastic case. The chassis lacks stability: The lid and the base unit in particular can be twisted a bit too much. The matte display (Full HD, IPS) offers stable viewing angles, good contrast, and decent color reproduction. However, the brightness and color-space coverage are too low. The built-in combination of the Core i7-1165G7 processor, 16 GB of RAM (dual-channel mode), and a 512 GB NVMe SSD (M.2 2230) equips the laptop for office and Internet applications. If the storage space isn't enough, an additional 2.5-inch storage drive can be installed. You can also replace or expand the RAM.

  • Linux Foundation raises USD 10 mln to secure software supply chain
  • ISO establishes SBOM standard for open source development with SPDX

    You’re not getting attention because of your choice of text editor or the number of spaces you use to indent code blocks. However motivating those preferences are for you and me, the non-technical world sees them as private choices. You find your code in the headlines for a different and unpleasant reason: open source dependency management.

  • Printed Piano Mechanism Sure Is Grand | Hackaday

    Do you know how a piano works? Sure, you press a key and a hammer strikes a string, but what are the finer points of this operation? The intricacy of the ingenious mechanism is laid bare in [Mechanistic]’s 3D-printed scale model of a small section of the grand piano keyboard. The ‘grand’ distinction here is piano length-agnostic and simply refers to any non-upright. Those operate the same way, but are laid out differently in order to save space.

  • FPGA Boards Add VGA And HMDI Interfaces To The Original Game Boy | Hackaday

    The classic Game Boy remains a firm favorite in the realm of retrocomputing. Revolutionary as it was at the time, by today’s standards its display is rather primitive, with no backlight and a usable area measuring only 47 mm x 44 mm. [Martoni] figured out a way to solve this, by developing GbVGA and GbHdmi, two projects that enable the Game Boy to connect to an external monitor. This way, you can play Super Mario Land without straining your eyes, and we can also image potential uses for those who stream their gameplay online.

  • Art Project Fast And Fouriously Transforms Audio Into Eye Candy | Hackaday

    The overall build is relatively simple. Audio is acquired via a line-in jack or a microphone, and then piped into an ESP32. The ESP32 runs the audio through the FFT routine, sampling, slicing, and dicing the audio into 16 individual bands. The visual output is displayed on a 16 x 16 WS2812 Led Matrix. [mircemk] wrote several routines for displaying the incoming audio, with a waterfall, a graph, and other visualizations that are quit aesthetically pleasing. Some of them are downright mesmerizing! You can see the results in the video below the break.

IBM/Red Hat Leftovers

  • Reach your open source community with content marketing [Ed: IBM has totally lost direction; this is how they think of Free software...]

    Both startups and more established firms are increasingly turning to content marketing as a way of reaching prospective customers. However, corporate marketers often consider the open source software (OSS) community a challenge to reach. This article features ways your technology and content marketing teams can work together to target and reach the community around an OSS project your organization supports.

  • Why digital transformation demands a change in leadership mindset

    Recently a key retail executive forecast that their industry will change more in the next five years than it has in the past fifty. Another executive believes society will change more in the next fifty years than it has in the last three hundred. A recent headline declared that, “We are approaching the fastest, deepest, most consequential technological disruption in history”, and Ray Kurzweil, Google’s Director of Engineering and co-Founder of Singularity University, has said that there will be fourteen internet size revolutions in the next decade. Whichever way you look at it, things are shifting… fast. When you speak with the visionaries and entrepreneurs actually building the solutions of tomorrow, from on-demand retail to vertical farms, and ask how far into this new era we are, almost universally the reply is: “only one percent”. Imagine then, where we will be ten years from now? How about 50? Major industries, from medicine to energy to travel to entertainment, are radically transforming, putting pressure on others such as manufacturing, construction, transportation, finance, education…frankly, all of it. What an extraordinary opportunity this presents.

  • DevSecOps lessons learned during a pandemic | The Enterprisers Project

    As we’ve seen over the past year and a half, the pandemic has accelerated digital transformation and forever changed workplace culture. Increased reliance on digital tools has elevated the value of DevSecOps, as enterprises of all sizes and across all industries realize the importance of automating and integrating security at every phase of the software development lifecycle – from initial design through integration, testing, deployment, and product delivery. My engineering team was no exception to this shift – we had to quickly prepare to build a new Virtana SaaS platform and deliver several new modules, all while working remotely. Here I’ll share some observations, pain points, and lessons learned to help others intelligently embrace DevSecOps best practices within their teams.