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Programming Leftovers

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  • New Tax Collection Tech Replaces 50-Year-Old System

    Fried said recent updates to the old system had fallen mainly to a single employee who had worked for the office for most of the five decades the system had been in place - and finding another programmer with similar skills would have been challenging. The old system used the COBOL programming language and a traditional mainframe computer, whereas the new system is cloud-based and can be managed entirely remotely.

  • Call for Code Daily: tech for the disabled, chatbots, and the final push to submission close
  • Godot Release candidate: 3.2.3 RC 3

    Godot 3.2.2 was released on June 26 with over 3 months' worth of development, including many bugfixes and a handful of features. Some regressions were noticed after the release though, so we decided that Godot 3.2.3 would focus mainly on fixing those new bugs to ensure that all Godot users can have the most stable experience possible.

    Here's a third Release Candidate for the upcoming Godot 3.2.3 release. Please help us test it to ensure that no new regressions have slipped through code review and testing.

    Note: The previous 3.2.3 RC 2 was actually not built from the intended commit, and reflected the same changeset as RC 1. Tests made on RC 2 are still valid and useful, but did not help validate the very latest commits, hence this third release candidate. The changes new in this build are thus the ones made between RC 1 and RC 3.

  • What Is Fuzz Testing? A Guide.

    Not all software testing techniques have origin stories, but fuzz testing does: On a stormy evening in 1988, Barton Miller, a computer science professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, was using a dial-up connection to work remotely on a Unix computer from his apartment. He was attempting to feed input information into a computer program, only to see the program repeatedly crash.

    He knew that the electrical noise from the thunderstorm was distorting his inputs into the program as they traveled through the phone line. The distorted inputs were different from what the software needed from the user, resulting in errors. But as he describes in his book, Fuzzing for Software Security Testing and Quality Assurance, Miller was surprised that even programs he considered robust were crashing as a result of the unexpected input, instead of gracefully handling the error and asking for input again.

    [...]

    Miller’s concern about what he saw during his thunderstorm experience extended beyond the annoyance of having applications crash unexpectedly. Applications that are not able to handle unexpected input also pose security concerns. Errors that aren’t handled by the program are vulnerabilities that attackers can exploit to hack into systems.

    In fact, attackers often use fuzz testing tools to locate vulnerabilities in applications, according to Jared DeMott, the CEO of VDA Labs security testing company and the instructor of several Pluralsight courses on testing.

    “If you follow what we call a secure development lifecycle… fuzzing is one piece of the lifecycle that relates to the testing portion of it,” DeMott said.

  • [Old] Infinite scrolling on the web is complexity layered on top of complexity layered on top of complexity

    Does all that stuff sound hard? Sorry, but it’s worse.

More in Tux Machines

Okular PDF digital signature improvements coming "soon" thanks to NLnet

Starting on January I will be working on a project named "Improve Okular digital signature support" that has received a grant from the NLnet foundation as part of the NGI Assure fund. This will allow me to work part time on Okular (in case it's not clear I work on Okular on a "when I have time-hobby" basis right now), the planned improvements are: 1. Support for signing unsigned signatures. I know it sounds confusing, think about it like something like the old "sign here" boxes on printed paper forms. Read more

FPGA SoC modules gain networking carrier and new PolarFire SoC model

Enclustra’s “Mercury+ PE3” carrier for its FPGA/SoC Mercury/Mercury+ modules can act as an SBC or plug into a PC via PCIe x8. It offers QSFP+, 4x SFP+, FireFly, and 2x GbE. We also examine a new “Mercury+ MP1” module based on the RISC-V based PolarFire SoC. In May, Switzerland based Enclustra announced a Mercury+ ST1 baseboard for its FPGA/SoC powered Mercury and Mercury+ compute modules. These include a Xilinx Zynq UltraScale+ MPSoC based Mercury+ XU6 module that was announced at the same time. Now the company has unveiled a more feature-rich Mercury+ PE3 board for the Mercury/Mercury+ product line. Farther below, we report on a similarly “in development” Mercury+ MP1 module based on Microchip’s based PolarFire SoC, which includes RISC-V based CPU cores and Microchip’s PolarFire FPGA. Read more

IBM/Red Hat/Fedora Leftovers

  • IBM applauds Knative’s application to join the Cloud Native Computing Foundation

    Today, Knative applied to become an incubating project at the Cloud Native Computing Foundation. Today’s news is a major step in the right direction for the future of Knative. Knative adds the necessary components that enable Kubernetes users to more quickly deploy and manage their workloads on Kubernetes — but without the need to become Kubernetes experts. Additionally, Knative adds “serverless” runtime semantics, allowing users to reap the benefit of features such as quick load-based scaling and scaling to zero when idle.

  • 3 ways to optimize Ansible Automation Platform for scale and performance | Enable Sysadmin

    Try these settings to optimize performance with Ansible Automation Platform on a massive scale.

  • Introduction to Ansible prompts and runtime variables

    This tutorial is part of a series we dedicated to Ansible. Previously we talked about the Ansible basics, then we focused on some Ansible modules we can use to perform some very common administration tasks, and we also talked about Ansible loops. In this article, instead, we learn how to create interactive prompts we can use to ask for user input and how to pass variables at runtime.

  • MIXAL on Fedora | Adam Young’s Web Log

    The examples in The Art of Computer Programming (TAOCP) are in the MIXAL programming language. In order to see these examples run, I want to install the tools on my Fedora box. They are packaged as RPMS, so this is trivial. Here are the steps to run and debug a sample program in MIXAL.

  • Fedora Contributor Annual Survey Data Set Available – Fedora Community Blog

    Over the summer of 2021, the Fedora Council held the first annual Contributor Survey. The survey received 800 complete responses, which exceeded the goal of 500. We have processed the data, which are available for download. Coordination of the survey was a wonderful community effort. Fedora Council member Aleksandra Fedorova proposed and led the survey effort with support from Marie Nordin (FCAIC). Many teams across the Fedora Project contributed, including: the Mindshare Committee, the Outreach Revamp Team, the Design Team, the Websites & Apps Team, and the Community Platform Engineering Team. Aleksandra and Marie presented a session at Nest with Fedora which goes further into the process and outcomes. Over the last couple months, the work of cleaning up the dataset has been underway. This has been a slow process as there are just a couple of people working on that regularly. An example of “cleaning” would be folks who chose “Other”, filled in “idk”, when the option “I don’t know” existed. Those answers need to be integrated in order to have a more accurate dataset. We removed fill-in answers due to the fact that some people identified themselves, intentionally or not. As we process the data, we are noting feedback to improve the survey for 2022.

WordPress 5.9 Beta 1

WordPress 5.9 Beta 1 is now available for testing! This version of the WordPress software is under development. You don’t want to run this version on a production site. Instead, it is recommended that you run this on a test site. This will allow you to test out the new version. Read more Also: People of WordPress: Devin Maeztri