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Gadgets

PinePhone Linux Smartphone Priced At $149 To Arrive This Year

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GNU
Linux
Gadgets

Smartphone users are usually torn between the two choices — Android or iOS. Their dominance is such that other competing OS like Windows, BlackBerry OS, or Symbian have almost been abandoned.

Those who don’t want either of them can opt for Pine64’s Linux phone dubbed the PinePhone, which offers good hardware and software at an affordable rate of $149.

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Librem 5 Hardware Update

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Development
GNU
Linux
Hardware
Gadgets
  • Librem 5 Hardware Update

    The Librem 5 Developer Kit started arriving in the hands of developers, and focus was shifted towards supporting the growing number of developer requests – we want to make sure that shared advancements are truly shared across the developer community, it exciting to see the rapid progress being made. Much of the work being done aims at making the kit work as well as possible for all kinds of developers. And even those working on non-critical issues at the moment are busy enjoying the discovery of all the capabilities of the dev kits.

    We are keeping track of issues by tagging them with the devkit tag in GitLab – a summary of which can be found at this overview.

  • The Current Hardware Specifications For Purism's Librem 5 Phone

    Just before Christmas, Purism began shipping the Librem 5 developer kits and with that increasing questions about the Librem 5 Linux smartphone, the company has published some new FAQs about the security-minded smartphone as well as publishing a concise list of the currently planned specifications.

    The specifications are much the same as when they were last covered, albeit now in a convenient list. The i.MX8M SoC is still at the heart of the phone though it's still yet to be determined whether the 8M Quad or 8M Quad Mini will be utilized. With either of those SoCs is the Vivante graphics, tentatively planning to ship with 3GB of RAM, and a 5.7-inch 720x1440 display, 802.11g/n WiFi, and one SIM card.

Samsung confirms Linux on DeX support for Galaxy S9

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Android
Linux
Ubuntu
Gadgets

In the above context, it can be safely assumed that S9 support is internally under testing. Adding S9+ compatibility on the LoD app is just the beginning of broader rollout.

There is no word on bringing Linux of DeX support for Galaxy S8/S8+/Note 8 for now.

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GameShell Review: Hackable Game Boy Clone That Has No Limits

Filed under
Linux
Gaming
Gadgets

Before I start, you should know that GameBoy is only one part of the story. With the help of Clockwork OS, one can install hundreds of emulators (aka “Cores”) on GameShell. So if you were into Tekken 3 of PlayStation One, or you liked playing FIFA on your PlayStation (PSP)portable, then Gameshell won’t disappoint you at all.

[...]

It’s actually pretty simple — Gameshell is powered by Clockwork OS, which by the way, is a GNU/Linux-based embedded operating system. So, GameShell, naturally, comes ready to be hacked or mess around with.

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Also: Talking point: What are you playing this weekend?

How We Designed the Librem 5 Dev Kit with 100% Free Software

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Development
GNU
Linux
Gadgets

Today we’re going to cover the journey of designing the Librem 5 Developer Kit and how we used 100% Free Software in its development.

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Linux Smartphone Necuno NC_1 Launched For Privacy And Freedom

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OS
Gadgets

Customers can choose from Plasma Mobile on Debian, Plasma Mobile on postmarketOS, Maemo Lese, Nemo Mobile, and LuneOS. These operating systems are still being developed and are intended for early adopters. You can also purchase Necunos NC_1 without any operating system.

According to the CEO of Necunos, the security-focused mobile devices would help enterprises, governmental organizations and journalists from constant threat and surveillance. It will allow them to communicate in hostile environments safely.

The official press release announcing the launch of the smartphone states that the sale will directly benefit the “communities, boosting growth and interest, unifying development efforts and part of the sale is donated directly to the organizations or to the target of their choosing.”

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Happy New Year 2019 all Sailfishers!

Filed under
Linux
Gadgets

It’s time to wrap up 2018, celebrate the New Year and look forward to 2019. For Jolla and Sailfish, 2018 was a year of a major milestones and steady progress in our regional licensing strategy.

In March we got a new partner, Rostelecom PLC, to join as a strategic investor to Sailfish agenda and bring a lot of muscle and speed to Sailfish development in Russia. Thanks to this, the ecosystem in Russia grew significantly during 2018 and Open Mobile Platform LLC (our licensing customer in Russia) grew the network to over 100 ecosystem partners developing various native Sailfish apps and backend solutions, started offering Sailfish coding classes in universities and 3 new Sailfish mobile devices, to name a few of the areas of progress.

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Leaving Apple and Google: a message to /e/ users and supporters!

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OS
Gadgets

Thanks to the support for thousand people, thanks to the contributions of many, thanks to the hard work of the /e/ core team, we have been able to deliver a great “/e/ MVP” (Minimal Viable Produc), as a beta, three months ago.

It comes as an installable Android-based ROM that can run most Android apps without Google services, it doesn’t have default settings to Google services anymore, it includes a different choice of default applications, it can use an /e/ identity using a simple email address to retrieve data and emails. It provides an online drive that is syncing content from the ROM automatically, it offers a default meta-search engine for the web…

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Purism Ships Librem 5 Dev Kits as the Linux Phones Will Arrive in April 2019

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Gadgets

Based on the newer and more powerful i.MX 8M 64-bit ARM boards, upgrading older devs kits based on the generic i.MX6 boards, the Librem 5 dev kits will soon arrive in the hands of early adopters as Purism needs all the help it can get from the community to continue and accelerate the development of its Linux-powered, privacy-focused phones, the Librem 5.

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Also: Purism's Librem 5 Developer Kits Finally Shipping, Linux Phone Price Going Up To $699

Kali Linux for the Gemini PDA

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Security
Gadgets

Being basically a pimped up cell phone requires a convergence of Linux (glibc) and Android (bionic) to drive the hardware not yet natively supported by GNU/Linux. We are using components from the Halium project to achieve that.

Bringing GNU/Linux to the Gemini PDA, or any other mobile platform, is in the very early stages and some of it still needs a bit of work, such as data and voice support, GPS, power management, etc. There is currently one known issue with the Gemini having occasional issues when shutting down. The community is currently working on it.

Overall, it’s a very stable experience thanks to the hard work of the Sailfish and Gemian communities, in particular TheKit and adam_b, who brought Gemian to the Gemini PDA and helped a lot with this project.

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More in Tux Machines

today's leftovers

  • Hardware Review - The ZaReason Virtus 9200 Desktop
  • Chrome OS 76 will disable Crostini Linux backups by default
    Essentially, this is still a work in progress feature. And I shouldn’t be terribly surprised by that, even though in my experience, the functionality hasn’t failed me yet. That’s because we know that the Chromium team is considering on a way to backup and restore Linux containers directly from the Files app on a Chromebook. That proposal is targeted for Chrome OS 78, so this gives the team more time to work that out, as well as any other nits that might not be quite right with the current implementation.
  • Andrei Lisita: Something to show for
    Unfortunately along with the progress that was made we also encountered a bug with the NintendoDS core that causes Games to crash if we attempt to load a savestate. We are not yet 100% sure if the bug is caused by my changes or by the NintendoDS core itself. I hope we are able to fix it by the end of the summer although I am not even sure where to start since savestates are working perfectly fine with other cores. Another confusing matter about this is that the Restart/Resume Dialog works fine with the NintendoDS core and it also uses savestates. This led me to believe that perhaps cores can be used to load savestates only once, but this can’t be the problem since we re-instantiate the core every time we load a savestate. In the worst case we might just have to make a special case for the NintendoDS core and not use savestates with it, except for the Resume/Restart dialog. This would sadden me deeply since there are plenty of NintendoDS games which could benefit from this feature.
  • OSMC's June update is here with Kodi v18.3
    Team Kodi recently announced the 18.3 point release of Kodi Leia. We have now prepared this for all supported OSMC devices and added some improvements and fixes. Here's what's new:

OSS Leftovers

  • A comparison of open source, real-time data streaming platforms
    A variety of open source, real-time data streaming platforms are available today for enterprises looking to drive business insights from data as quickly as possible. The options include Spark Streaming, Kafka Streams, Flink, Hazelcast Jet, Streamlio, Storm, Samza and Flume -- some of which can be used in tandem with each other. Enterprises are adopting these real-time data streaming platforms for tasks such as making sense of a business marketing campaign, improving financial trading or recommending marketing messages to consumers at critical junctures in the customer journey. These are all time-critical areas that can be used for improving business decisions or baked into applications driven by data from a variety of sources.
  • Amphenol’s Jason Ellison on Signal Integrity Careers and His Free, Open Source PCB Design Software
    Ellison, Senior Staff Signal Integrity Engineer at Amphenol ICC, gives his insight on the importance of networking, giving to the EE community, and his open-source signal integrity project. How does signal integrity engineering compare to other EE fields? What are open-source resources worth these days? What makes for a good work life for an engineer? Learn this and more in this Engineer Spotlight! Jason Ellison started down the path to becoming an electrical engineer because someone told him it was "fun and easy if you're good at math." In this interview with AAC's Mark Hughes, Ellison—a Senior Staff Signal Integrity Engineer at Amphenol ICC—describes how his career has grown from these beginnings into the rewarding and diverse work of signal integrity engineering.
  • Cruise open-sources Webviz, a tool for robotics data analysis [Ed: Releasing a little tool that's part of proprietary software so that it 'feels' more "open"]
    Cruise, the self-driving startup that General Motors acquired for nearly $1 billion in 2016, generates an enormous amount of data by any measure. It orchestrates 200,000 hours of driving simulation jobs daily in Google Cloud Platform, spread across 30,000 virtual cars in an environment running on 300,000 processor cores and 5,000 graphics cards. Both those cars and Cruise’s fleet of over 180 real-world autonomous Chevrolet Bolts make thousands of decisions every second, and they base these decisions on observations captured in binary format from cameras, microphones, radar sensors, and lidar sensors.
  • EWF launches world’s first open source blockchain for the energy industry
    The Energy Web Foundation this week announced that it has launched the world’s first public, open-source, enterprise-grade blockchain tailored to the energy sector: the Energy Web Chain (EW Chain). More than ten Energy Web Foundation (EWF) Affiliates — including utilities, grid operators, and blockchain developers — are hosting validator nodes for the live network, according to the company.
  • Pimcore Releases Pimcore 6.0, Amplifying User-Friendly Digital Experiences Through Open Source
    Pimcore, the leading open-source platform for data and customer experience management, has released the most powerful version of the Pimcore platform, Pimcore 6.0. The updated platform includes a new user interface that seamlessly connects MDM/PIM, DAM, WCM, and digital commerce capabilities to create more advanced and user-friendly experiences quickly and efficiently.
  • VCV Rack reaches version 1.0.0: free and open-source modular synth gets a full release
    VCV Rack is a free, open-source modular software synth that’s been gaining ground for a couple of years, but only now has it reached the significant milestone of version 1.0. Designed to replicate the feeling of having a hardware modular synth on your desktop, VCV Rack enables you to add both free and paid-for modules, and now supports polyphony of up to 16 voices. There’s MIDI Output, too with CV-Gate, CV-MIDI and CV-CC modules enabling you to interface with drum machines, desktop synths and Eurorack gear.
  • Flying Above the Shoulders of Giants
    Thanks to open-source platforms, developers can stand on the shoulders of software giants to build bigger and better things. Linux is probably the biggest...
  • MIT Researchers Open-Source AutoML Visualization Tool ATMSeer
    A research team from MIT, Hong Kong University, and Zhejiang University has open-sourced ATMSeer, a tool for visualizing and controlling automated machine-learning processes. Solving a problem with machine learning (ML) requires more than just a dataset and training. For any given ML tasks, there are a variety of algorithms that could be used, and for each algorithm there can be many hyperparameters that can be tweaked. Because different values of hyperparameters will produce models with different accuracies, ML practitioners usually try out several sets of hyperparameter values on a given dataset to try to find hyperparameters that produce the best model. This can be time-consuming, as a separate training job and model evaluation process must be conducted for each set. Of course, they can be run in parallel, but the jobs must be setup and triggered, and the results recorded. Furthermore, choosing the particular values for hyperparameters can involve a bit of guesswork, especially for ones that can take on any numeric value: if 2.5 and 2.6 produce good results, maybe 2.55 would be even better? What about 2.56 or 2.54?
  • Open-Source Cybersecurity Tool to Enhance Grid Protection
    A revolutionary new cybersecurity tool that can help protect the electric power grid has been released to the public on the code-hosting website GitHub.
  • Quick notes for Mozilla Whistler All Hands 2019
  • Deeper into the data fabric with MongoDB
    However, to gain access to rich search functionality, many organisations pair their database with a search engine such as Elasticsearch or Solr, which MongoDB claims can complicate development and operations — because we end up with two entirely separate systems to learn, maintain and scale.

Raspberry Pi 4 is here!

The latest version of the Raspberry Pi—Raspberry Pi 4—was released today, earlier than anticipated, featuring a new 1.5GHz Arm chip and VideoCore GPU with some brand new additions: dual-HDMI 4K display output; USB3 ports; Gigabit Ethernet; and multiple RAM options up to 4GB. The Raspberry Pi 4 is a very powerful single-board computer and starts at the usual price of $35. That gets you the standard 1GB RAM, or you can pay $45 for the 2GB model or $55 for the 4GB model—premium-priced models are a first for Raspberry Pi. Read more

Open Data, Open Access and Open Hardware

  • DoD’s Joint AI Center to open-source natural disaster satellite imagery data set
    As climate change escalates, the impact of natural disasters is likely to become less predictable. To encourage the use of machine learning for building damage assessment this week, Carnegie Mellon University’s Software Engineering Institute and CrowdAI — the U.S. Department of Defense’s Joint AI Center (JAIC) and Defense Innovation Unit — open-sourced a labeled data set of some of the largest natural disasters in the past decade. Called xBD, it covers the impact of disasters around the globe, like the 2010 earthquake that hit Haiti. “Although large-scale disasters bring catastrophic damage, they are relatively infrequent, so the availability of relevant satellite imagery is low. Furthermore, building design differs depending on where a structure is located in the world. As a result, damage of the same severity can look different from place to place, and data must exist to reflect this phenomenon,” reads a research paper detailing the creation of xBD. [...]

    xBD includes approximately 700,000 satellite images of buildings before and after eight different kinds of natural disasters, including earthquakes, wildfires, floods, and volcanic eruptions. Covering about 5,000 square kilometers, it contains images of floods in India and Africa, dam collapses in Laos and Brazil, and historic deadly fires in California and Greece.

    The data set will be made available in the coming weeks alongside the xView 2.0 Challenge to unearth additional insights from xBD, coauthor and CrowdAI machine learning lead Jigar Doshi told VentureBeat. The data set collection effort was informed by the California Air National Guard’s approach to damage assessment from wildfires.

  • Open-source textbooks offer free alternative for UC Clermont students
    Some UC Clermont College students are avoiding paying hundreds of dollars for textbooks — and getting the content for free — thanks to online open-source textbooks, a growing trend among faculty at the college and throughout higher education. UC Clermont Dean Jeff Bauer, who is also a professor of business, said the benefits of open textbooks are many. “All students have the book on the first day of class, it saves them a lot of money, and the information can be accessed anywhere, anytime, without carrying around a heavy textbook,” Bauer said. “They don’t need to visit the bookstore before or after each semester to buy or sell back books, either.”
  • Open Source Computer Controlled Loom Knits Pikachu For You
    The origin story of software takes us back past punch card computers and Babbage's Difference Engine to a French weaver called Joseph Marie Jacquard.
  • Successful open-source RISC-V microcontroller launched through crowdfunding
    X-FAB Silicon Foundries, together with crowd-sourcing IC platform partner Efabless Corporation, launched the first-silicon availability of the Efabless RISC-V SoC reference design. This open-source semiconductor project went from start of design to tape-out in less than three months employing the Efabless design flow produced on open-source tools. The mixed-signal SoC, called Raven, is based on the community developed ultra-low power PicoRV32 RISC-V core. Efabless has bench-tested the Raven at 100MHz, and based on simulations, the solution should operate at up to 150MHz.
  • Open Hardware: Open-Source MRI Scanners Could Bring Enormous Cost Savings
    Wulfsberg explore the possibilities of open source MRI scanning. As open-source technology takes its place around the world—everywhere from makerspaces to FabLabs, users on every level have access to design and innovation. In allowing such access to MRI scanning, the researchers realize the potential for ‘technological literacy’ globally—and with MRIs specifically, astronomical sums could be saved in healthcare costs. The authors point out that medical technology is vital to the population of the world for treating not only conditions and illnesses, but also disabilities. As so many others deeply involved in the world of technology and 3D printing realize, with greater availability, accessibility, and affordability, huge strides can be made to improve and save lives. Today, with so many MRI patents expiring, the technology is open for commercialization.