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February 2014

Tor developing anonymous instant messenger

Filed under
OSS
Security

The instant messenger is still in the early planning stages, but Tor's developers seem to be preparing to turn it around quickly. The messenger will be built on Instantbird, an existing open-source messenger, and development will largely involve adding in Off-the-Record Messaging encryption, making it send its messages over Tor, and stripping it of some automated logging and reporting features. Tor hopes to have its first step of work on the messaging app completed by the end of March, but it doesn't draw a timeline for the project out from there.

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Raspberry Pi marks 2nd birthday with plan for open source graphics driver

Filed under
Hardware

That "blob" is the closed source driver code that the Pi requires today. "In common with every other mobile graphics core, using the VideoCore IV 3D graphics core on the Pi requires a block of closed-source binary driver code (a 'blob') which talks to the hardware," Upton wrote. "Our existing open-source graphics drivers are a thin shim running on the ARM11, which talks to that blob via a communication driver in the Linux kernel. The lack of true open-source graphics drivers and documentation is widely acknowledged to be a significant problem for Linux on ARM, as it prevents users from fixing driver bugs, adding features and generally understanding what their hardware is doing."

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Linux Video of the Week: Hands-On with the $25 Firefox Phone

Filed under
Linux
Moz/FF

Mozilla has designed a phone that's even more affordable for emerging markets and thus redefines the entry level for smartphones. Mozilla engineers were able to accomplish this by adjusting the hardware requirements of the operating system to run on a 1 GHz CPU, single core Spreadtrum chipset with only 128 MB of RAM. That's only 25 to 50 percent of the RAM found in existing entry-level devices on the market, said Joe Cheng, product manager at Mozilla in this video demonstration of the prototype phone, below.

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Arduino-compatible open SBC taps Cortex-A5 SoC

Filed under
Linux
Hardware

Newark Element14′s $79, Linux-ready “SAMA5D3 Xplained” SBC showcases Atmel’s SAMA5D3 processor, with features like dual LAN ports and Arduino compatibility.

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Ubuntu smartphones, wearables and going into space: Mark Shuttleworth talks to TNW

Filed under
Ubuntu

t’s the difference between momentary terror and long, drawn out gnawing fear. One of those will kill you and one will just give you a fright.”

That’s the response of Mark Shuttleworth, founder of Canonical and Ubuntu, when quizzed over whether it’s scarier to go into space or try to launch a unified OS platform. As the first citizen of an independent African country to travel to space and the public face of ensuring the Ubuntu OS makes it onto smartphones and tablets, he should know.

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Google Android chief: Android may be open, but it is not less secure

Filed under
Android
Google
Security

Does 'open' mean 'lack of security'?

According to Google, no. Instead, an open platform is the best path to take in order to make a platform as impermeable to threats as possible.

On Thursday, FrAndroid reported that Google's head of the Android division, Sundar Pichai, responded in a very candid way when asked about the operating system's security at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain.

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Gnome 3.12 won’t offer full support for Wayland

Filed under
GNOME

Gnome developers have been debating the full support for Wayland in 3.12 for a while. They at one point even considered delaying the Gnome release to keep the development in sync with Wayland. Finally, developers have decided to keep Wayland in ‘preview’ mode as there is still a lot of work to be done.

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Putting Tizen in Context

Filed under
Linux
Gadgets

From the very start, Tizen has had the concept of device profiles, where there's a common set of core software components (kernel, coreutils, networking stack, etc.) that are applicable to every type of device, and there are specializations specific to whatever it is you're using. Take your hand and open it flat. Ok? Good. Your palm is the core software stack, and your fingers are the device-specific profiles - handset, IVI, TV, etc. Chances are good that many elements of the core stack will be the same, and in all cases you want to optimize for lower power consumption and better performance, but what a smartphone presents to the user is generally quite different from an IVI system, or a wearable device, or a camera, or a TV, or a refrigerator, or... I'm sure you get the point. One size doesn't fit all, but you certainly can be smart about not reinventing the wheel for each product class.

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Linux Gamers Have More Choices Than Ever

Filed under
Linux
Gaming

After a number of years of remaining woefully behind other platforms, Linux is starting to be a gaming platform to take seriously. Late last year, I covered comments from Lars Gustavsson, a creative director for EA Digital Illusions CE (DICE), the Electronic Arts studio that does the Battlefield series, on the topic of Linux games. He had told Polygon that DICE would love to delve into Linux games, and that what Linux really needs is a "killer game." Now, as 2014 is underway, Linux gamers actually have a lot of good choices.

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First beta of Kubuntu 14.04 out for testing

Filed under
KDE

Ubuntu derivatives have announced the first beta for 14.04 release. Since ‘daddy’ Ubuntu releases only one beta before final release the images for Unity are not available. Being a KDE user I am definitely looking forward to Kubuntu which will come with KDE Applications 4.12.2 along with newest Muon Software Center. I did notice a bug in Kubuntu beta and that’s freezing of installer if you have more than one hard drive attached to the system. I hope developers will fix this ‘deal breaking’ bug before the final release. Other betas are from Lubuntu, Xubuntu, Ubuntu Gnome and other members of Ubuntu family.

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More in Tux Machines

Programming Leftovers

  • A beginner's guide to developing with React | Opensource.com

    React is a JavaScript user interface (UI) library that was built and is maintained by Facebook. React helps JavaScript developers think logically and functionally about how they want to build a UI.

  • DOM Recording For Web Application Demos

    To show off the power of our Pernosco debugger, we wanted many short demo videos of the application interface. Regular videos are relatively heavyweight and lossy; we wanted something more like Asciinema, but for our Web application, not just a terminal. So we created DOMRec, a DOM recorder.

  • The 20 Best Kotlin Books for Beginner and Expert Developers

    Here you will find the top Kotlin books that will make it very interesting and almost effortless for you to learn Kotlin. Kotlin is a statically composed, universally useful programming language with type deduction. It is also a cross-platform language. Kotlin is intended to engage completely with Java, and Kotlin’s standard library’s JVM variant relies upon the Java Class Library. However, Kotlin’s type of derivation permits its syntax to be more compact and precise. Therefore, it has become quite crucial to learn Kotlin these days. But to learn it in the shortest number of days, a perfect set of Kotlin books is indecipherably important. Whether or not to pick Kotlin or Java for new advancement has been coming up a ton in the Android people group since the Google I/O declaration. The short answer is that Kotlin code is more secure and more succinct than Java code and that Kotlin and Java records can coincide in Android applications, so Kotlin isn’t just valuable for new applications but also for growing existing Java applications as well.

  • What the Error Handling Project Group is Working On

    The Rust community takes its error handling seriously. There’s already a strong culture in place for emphasizing helpful error handling and reporting, with multiple libraries each offering their own take (see Jane Lusby’s thorough survey of Rust error handling/reporting libraries). But there’s still room for improvement. The main focus of the group is carrying on error handling-related work that was in progress before the group's formation. To that end, we're working on systematically addressing error handling-related issues, as well as eliminating blockers that are holding up stalled RFCs. Our first few meetings saw us setting a number of short- and long-term goals. These goals fall into one of three themes: making the Error trait more universally accessible, improving error handling ergonomics, and authoring additional learning resources.

  • How to collect Rust source-based code coverage

    Source-based code coverage was recently introduced in Rust. It is more precise than the gcov-based coverage, with fewer workarounds needed. Its only drawback is that it makes the profiled program slower than with gcov-based coverage. In this post, I will show you a simple example on how to set up source-based coverage on a Rust project, and how to generate a report using grcov (in a readable format or in a JSON format which can be parsed to generate custom reports or upload results to Coveralls/Codecov).

Audiocasts/Shows/Videos: Feren OS, A First Look At Garuda Linux KDE "Dr4Gonized", and Trolling Linux

Free Software: Curl, DOSEMU2, SFC, BookStack and Hantro

  • Daniel Stenberg: The curl web infrastructure

    The purpose of the curl web site is to inform the world about what curl and libcurl are and provide as much information as possible about the project, the products and everything related to that. The web site has existed in some form for as long as the project has, but it has of course developed and changed over time.

  • DOSEMU2

    Since I have the original DOSEMU working, I'm not going to attempt to install DOSEMU2 at this time. (Especially as I'd have to build from source; precompiled packages for Debian are not provided.) But I'm glad to hear that someone has "forked" the DOSEMU project and is continuing maintenance and development, since the original DOSEMU seems to have been frozen in mid-2013.

  • Generous Match Challenge from Individual Conservancy Supporters for Annual Fundraiser

    We are pleased to launch our annual fundraiser today with a match challenge of $111,029. This match is extremely exciting (not only because it is a prime number for the second year but also) because the pledges comes entirely from individuals (not companies!) who care deeply about software freedom. The bulk of this match challenge was provided by one very generous donor who prefers to remain anonymous. Their amount was augmented by six Conservancy Supporters (listed alphabetically) who came together to increase the match even more: Jeremy Allison, Kevin P. Fleming, Roan Kattouw, Jim McDonough, Allison Randal and Daniel Vetter. You'll be hearing more about why they joined this year's match donation in interviews on our blog in the coming weeks.

  • BookStack:Collaboratively Create and editor books with your team

    When writing or editing a complex project like a book collaboratively with a team, there are many problems that start from selecting the best tools. The main problem here is there are many tools to choose from and most of them require a time to learn and setup for all team members. Many teams tend to use several tools at once which may conflict with their workflow and takes time to jump from here to there with notes, revisions and content. The best option is to keep the collaborative writing and editing workflow in one place to manage book sections, comments, revisions, images, sorting, search and exports. Wiki engines and collaborative writing tools usually require customization for book editing. Also, it's good to consider the technical knowledge of writers and editors and the time needed to learn how to use the system.

  • Hantro H1 hardware accelerated video encoding support in mainline Linux

    With the increasing need for video encoding, there are some breakthrough developments in hardware-accelerated video encoding for Linux. Bootlin has been working on the implementation of Hantro H1 hardware accelerated video encoding to support H.264 encoding on Linux which follows the company’s work on the previously-released open-source VPU driver for Allwinner processors.

LibreOffice 7.1 Beta1 is available for testing

The LibreOffice Quality Assurance ( QA ) Team is happy to announce LibreOffice 7.1 Beta1 is available for testing! LibreOffice 7.1 will be released as final at the beginning of February, 2021 ( Check the Release Plan for more information ) being LibreOffice 7.1 Beta1 the second pre-release since the development of version 7.1 started at the end of May, 2020. Since the previous release, LibreOffice 7.1 Alpha1, 1131 commits have been submitted to the code repository and 245 issues got fixed. Check the release notes to find the new features included in this version of LibreOffice. Read more