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GNU Linux-Libre 5.5 Kernel Arrives for Those Seeking 100% Freedom for Their PCs

The GNU Linux-Libre 5.5 kernel has been released today as a 100% free version of the Linux 5.5 kernel, shipping only with free and open source drivers. GNU Linux-Libre 5.5 kernel is here for those seeking 100% freedom for their personal computers, as it deblobs more drivers, including brcmstb_dpfe, i915, iwlwifi, mlxsw spectrum, wilc1000, r8169, x86 touchscreen dmi, and xhci-tegra. In addition, the GNU Linux-Libre 5.5 kernel release also cleans several new drivers, among which we can mention IDT Clockmatrix, Realtek RTL815[23] USB Ethernet adaptors, RT5677 sound codecs, and WFX wf200 wireless. Read more

Screen sharing on Linux: The state of things

When I want to show something, I can either:

Share a single window, which can sometimes just share the entire screen anyway, or sometimes crash the entire chat application if I hide the window by switching to another workspace.

Share outside of the chat application we’re using

So, I use OBS (which actually has third-party support for wlroots if you’re on Wayland) and stream to my own RTMP server.

Read more

today's leftovers

  • 25/01/2020: This week in KISS (#8)

    Another new addition to the website is the packages page. This is a full listing of each package in the repositories with version and maintainer information.

    The page is updated automatically with changes to the repositories. The raw repository data is also available as a simple tsv file.

  • Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter Issue 615

    Welcome to the Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter, Issue 615 for the week of January 19 – 25, 2020. The full version of this issue is available here.

  • IOTA News: Power consumption of Bitcoin 5.6 million times higher compared to IOTA, New embedded Linux distribution

    Already in early January, Bernardo Rodrigues received a grant from the Ecosystem Development Fund of the IOTA Foundation for the development of an OpenEmbedded Layer for IOTA. The project of an OpenEmbedded Layer for IOTA projects, Meta-iota, is intended to enable an easy and fast integration of IOTA projects into Yocto-based embedded Linux distributions, as CNF reported. With honeycombOS, Rodrigues recently released another embedded Linux distribution tailored for IOTA nodes, clients and Tangle related tools. It is mainly based on Poky and was created with tools from the Yocto Project and OpenEmbedded. As Rodrigues further explains, honeycombOS is part of Meta-iota, which is supported by the IOTA Ecosystem Development Fund. In detail Rodrigues describes:

  • IGEL Announces Availability of the First Linux Client to Support Microsoft Windows Virtual Desktop

    IGEL, provider of the next-gen edge OS for cloud workspaces, today announced general availability of Linux client support for Microsoft Windows Virtual Desktop. As part of a limited preview of the Microsoft RD Core software developer's kit (SDK), IGEL is the first to offer a Linux-based client that is validated for use with Windows Virtual Desktop.

  • IGEL Announces Linux Client Support For Windows Virtual Desktop
  • Time to celebrate Data Privacy Day!

    In the words of the National Cyber Security Alliance, Data Privacy Day "is an international effort to empower individuals and encourage businesses to respect privacy, safeguard data and enable trust." Data privacy should be at the forefront of everyone's mind.  Protecting your personal data and understanding your right to privacy is becoming more and more important as we start to understand how valuable personal data is and how we are all accountable for protecting our privacy. Data privacy day is focused on staying safe online, which is a great opportunity to reflect on privacy in a personal way.  

  • Overview of syslog-ng RPM repositories

    Most Linux distributions – like openSUSE or Fedora – include a syslog-ng package in their official repositories ready to install. Some others – like SLES and RHEL – include it in semi-official repositories, like SLES Backports and EPEL. What is the use case for unofficial repositories? Unless you use the rolling version of a distribution, like openSUSE Tumbleweed or Fedora Rawhide, you will be using an old version of syslog-ng. In some extreme cases, like RHEL 7, it means a six years old syslog-ng release, missing many features – like multi-threading – which are taken now for granted. Even if the included syslog-ng version is up-to-date, it might miss a few features – like the Java and Kafka destinations – due to missing or too old dependencies in the distribution. If you are lucky or just have a simple use case, the syslog-ng package included in the distro is sufficient for you. If you need one of the features missing from the distribution package, consider the unofficial syslog-ng repositories. What “unofficial” means? While I am a Balabit/One Identity employee, these are not official repositories. They are provided as is, with a best effort level of support.

  • Introducing the TRIRIGA Assistant

    Wouldn’t it be nice if your office started to act more like a team player? For employees, that would mean effortless engagement with workplace services. For facility managers, that would mean more engaged and delighted occupants who provide feedback to keep the workplace not just humming but evolving. IBM TRIRIGA just announced numerous enhancements to the workplace experience in the latest release. Among these enhancements, the all new TRIRIGA Assistant. The TRIRIGA Assistant is a smart, conversational AI assistant, which is the same frictionless technology that we all have in our homes, and which is another way to meet the ever-growing expectations of the workforce. This AI assistant can help users find and reserve meeting rooms, report maintenance issues correctly, and even locate where a colleague sits. And that is just the beginning.

  • IBM Champions unlock the power of IBM

    After reviewing nearly 1,400 nominations, IBM is proud and happy to announce the 2020 class of IBM Champions. The IBM Champion program recognizes innovative thought leaders in the technical community and rewards these contributors by amplifying their voice and increasing their sphere of influence. The program catalyzes their ongoing contributions by providing education, engagement, and opportunities. An IBM Champion is a business partner or customer of IBM — an IT professional, business leader, developer, executive, or educator who influences and mentors others to help them innovate with and make the best decisions around IBM software, solutions, and services.

  • Explaining Knative, the Project to Liberate Serverless from Cloud Giants

    Today, using serverless means choosing a cloud platform to lock yourself into. The open source project expected to fix that is approaching prime time.

OSS and Openwashing Leftovers

  • The Importance Of Growing Developer Action On Open Source Enterprise Blockchain Solutions

    Since major enterprises started taking blockchain seriously and looking at the technology's potential in their chosen arena, so have a number of popular enterprise-grade blockchain solutions have come to the fore. Some of these solutions are sold to companies as an all in one solution, slightly deviating from some of the core decentralized and open-sourced pillars of the technology, but the more popular ones are open-sourced and constantly being developed. The likes of Hyperledger Fabric, as well as Sawtooth and Besu, R3 Corda, and Quorum are all open source solutions that have been tracked for developer activity by Blockchain service firm Chainstack.

  • An Open Source Alternative to AWS SageMaker

    There’s no shortage of resources and tools for developing machine learning algorithms. But when it comes to putting those algorithms into production for inference, outside of AWS’s popular SageMaker, there’s not a lot to choose from. Now a startup called Cortex Labs is looking to seize the opportunity with an open source tool designed to take the mystery and hassle out of productionalizing machine learning models. Infrastructure is almost an afterthought in data science today, according to Cortex Labs co-founder and CEO Omer Spillinger. A ton of energy is going into choosing how to attack problems with data – why, use machine learning of course! But when it comes to actually deploying those machine learning models into the real world, it’s relatively quiet.

  • Ambitions for a Unix Shell

    As discussed in the January blog roadmap, I want to concretely describe a reduced Oil language, and see if we can get it "done" in 2020.

    So, to give context to upcoming posts about the language, let's review the project's goals from different perspectives: [...]

  • Inside Open-Source Networking

    In this edition of the Embedded Insiders podcast, Brandon and Rich continue their journey into the world of open source, this time by focusing on Z-Wave that was recently donated to the community by Silicon Labs (who acquired the networking technology from Sigma Designs). Later, the Embedded Insiders are joined by Laurens Slats from The Things Industries, who continues the discussion of open source networking technologies by outlining the state of LoRa and LoRaWAN. Their upcoming Things Conference in Amsterdam takes place January 30-31st.

  • Rockstar dev debate reopens: Hero programmers do exist, do all the work, do chat a lot – and do need love and attention from project leaders

    The idea that some software developers matter more to coding projects than others is controversial, particularly among open source projects where community cohesion and participation can suffer if contributors are not treated fairly. Scott Hanselman, partner program manager at Microsoft, argued against the notion of rockstar programmers back in 2013, as have many others. But not everyone agrees and it's a difficult debate to settle because there's no consensus about what to measure, much less about the methods used to make the measurements. What's more, projects may have different needs at different times – a dominant contributor may help bring projects to life but then become a liability when the project is mature. The latest entry into this long-running argument comes from a research paper, "Why Software Projects need Heroes (Lessons Learned from 1000+ Projects)," published last year [PDF] and just revised [PDF] with 16 additional pages.

  • Tierion introduces set of open-source tools to create 'trustless' Lightning apps
  • Nextcloud evolves into Nextcloud Hub to better meet your company's needs

    The Nextcloud developers have unleashed one of their most significant upgrades to their on-premises cloud hosting platform: Nextcloud Hub. I was invited to test the pre-release version and never before have I been so impressed with a piece of open source software. Nextcloud has evolved from a tool that can be installed and expanded with a number of applications, to an out-of-the-box, one-stop shop collaboration suite. Once installed, Nextcloud Hub includes built-in video chat, OnlyOffice integration, and so much more--out of the box. Admins will no longer have to install or connect to a separate OnlyOffice server. That's big news for anyone who's taken the time to add business-grade collaboration to the Nextcloud platform. Open source now has a seriously robust and user-friendly web-based office groupware suite. This evolution of the hottest on-premises cloud server software will come about with the next release (version 18 is available now) and will bring with it a full-blown, fully-featured cloud-based set of collaboration tools unlike anything you've witnessed in an open source stack.

  • LSD welcomes Knowledge Focus to Planet Open Source

    The strategic integration is the result of a shared vision to unify and further strengthen competencies across key open source solution spaces. With this merger, LSD hopes to explore new opportunities with their combined superpowers and will continue to deliver market-leading open-source solutions.

  • SUSI.AI release 20200120: Desktop and Smart Speaker

    More than a month has passed, but the winter holidays allowed me to update, fix, and stream line a lot of corners in SUSI.AI. And above all, work on a desktop version that can easily be installed. Thus, the FOSSASIA Team finally can release a SUSI.AI 2020-01-20 of SUSI.AI, the privacy aware personal assistant.

  • FOSDEM by train

    I’ve always loved train journeys, but with flygskam changing people’s travel preferences across Europe (and possibly worldwide, though probably not that much), I decided to take train to FOSDEM this time. [...] As some of my readers may know, my backpack was stolen from me after FOSDEM two years ago, and with it were gone, among other things, my passport and my residence permit card. With my flight home having been planned two and half hours from the moment when I realised my things are gone, I couldn’t get a replacement travel document quickly enough from the embassy, so I had to stay at my friends in Vilvoorde (thanks a lot again, Jurgen!) and travel with the cheapest ground transportation I could find. In my case, it was a night RegioJet coach to Prague with a connection to (again) RegioJet train to Bratislava. (I couldn’t fly even though I already had my temporary travel document since I might need to somehow prove that I’m allowed to be in the Schengen zone, which is difficult to do without a valid residence permit.) Sleeping on a bus isn’t the best way to travel for long distances, and I was knackered when I finally dropped on my sofa in Bratislava next morning. However, what I learnt was that it was possible, and were it a bit more comfortable, I wouldn’t mind something like this again.

  • Now available: Open source solar contracts to simplify transacting

    A team of legal advisors and renewable energy experts contributed to an Open Solar Contracts Initiative to accelerate the deployment of solar power worldwide. The open source project was initiated by the Terrawatt Initiative (TWI) and the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) in 2016.

  • joão leão develops the first open source electric skateboard made out of recycled plastic

    designer joão leão constantly ran into plastic waste washing ashore on the beaches of porto; he was also constantly running late due to his endless commute on public transportation. so, he created a faster method of personal transportation using recycled thermoplastics as the main manufacturing material — the PET MINI electric skateboard. [...] leão took inspiration from the anatomy of an armadillo for the electronics enclosure by designing a series of modular pieces along the bottom of the board. this allows for both the protection of the electronic components, and also maintains the flexibility of the deck — giving it the comfortable ride necessary for the city. other commercial products lose the deck’s flexibility, making it a rough ride through different urban terrains.

  • How I had a nerdy date night with StreetComplete quests

    StreetComplete is an Android app that makes it fun and easy to contribute to open data by completing quests. Quests are used to fill in incomplete or inaccurate information on OpenStreetMap, an open data project dedicated to mapping the world through crowdsourcing. Anyone can contribute to the map and, thanks to free culture and open source licenses, that data can then be used by anyone for anything, from video games to custom map applications and artwork. [...] Download the app to your phone from F-Droid or Google Play. It’s licensed under GPLv3.

  • Academic publishing must better serve science and society

    We propose a new vision for scientific publishing that starts with reversing the relationship between authors and publishers. Under this system, authors would be able to make their research freely accessible to everyone immediately. Journal editors would compete to publish it, but publication would not be the end of the story: researchers could continue to update their papers for years afterwards. Nor would publication be the aim of the game: the incentives, recognition and reward systems would not depend on where a paper is published, but rather on its contents and the extent to which it advances knowledge.

    This is already starting to happen. The number of preprints is increasing daily, and most journals now facilitate the submission of papers to preprint servers via their own submission systems. Others have appointed preprint editors to screen preprints and solicit submissions, adopting scoop protection policies that commit them to disregarding, in their editorial decisions, any competing papers published after submission of the paper or preprint.