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Programming: ncurses, RLlib, and Languages

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  • Announcing ncurses 6.1

    The ncurses (new curses) library is a free software emulation of curses in System V Release 4.0 (SVr4), and more. It uses terminfo format, supports pads and color and multiple highlights and forms characters and function-key mapping, and has all the other SVr4-curses enhancements over BSD curses. SVr4 curses became the basis of X/Open Curses.

  • Ncurses 6.1 Released With A Variety Of Improvements & Other Changes

    Ncurses 6.1 retains compatibility support for Ncurses 5.0/6.0, but adds in a variety of new features and improvements. There is now extended numeric capabilities, various internal code changes to enhance Ncurses' performance, some new functions introduced, and a variety of corrections to existing features.

  • Introducing RLlib: A composable and scalable reinforcement learning library

    In a previous post, I outlined emerging applications of reinforcement learning (RL) in industry. I began by listing a few challenges facing anyone wanting to apply RL, including the need for large amounts of data, and the difficulty of reproducing research results and deriving the error estimates needed for mission-critical applications. Nevertheless, the success of RL in certain domains has been the subject of much media coverage. This has sparked interest, and companies are beginning to explore some of the use cases and applications I described in my earlier post. Many tasks and professions, including software development, are poised to incorporate some forms of AI-powered automation. In this post, I’ll describe how RISE Lab’s Ray platform continues to mature and evolve just as companies are examining use cases for RL.

  • Employers want JavaScript, but developers want Python

    When it comes to which programming languages are in demand by employers, JavaScript, Java, Python, C++, and C—in that order—came out on top in a recent developer survey. Developers, however, want to learn languages like Python, Go, and Kotlin.

    A survey of developers by technical recruiter HackerRank, conducted in October, found no gap between languages employers want and what developers actually know, with JavaScript barely edging out Java. But as far as which languages developers prefer, Python is the language developers most want to learn—and many already know it, HackerRank found.

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Screenshots/Screencasts: Robolinux 10.4 LXDE, deepin 15.9, and Parrot OS 4.5 KDE

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With the Linux 5.1 kernel cycle that should get underway in just over one month's time, there will now be the long in development work (it's been through 15+ rounds of public code review!) for supporting atomic replace and cumulative patches. Read more

GNOME/Xfce/GTK: Exo 0.12.4 and Libhandy 0.0.7 Released

  • Exo 0.12.4 Released
    Exo 0.12.4 is now available with an improved icon view, better icon rendering, and reduced disk usage.
  • My Name is Handy, Lib Handy
    Libhandy 0.0.7 just got released! [...] A common pattern in GNOME applications is lists, which are typically implemented via GtkListBox. More specific patterns arose, where rows have a title at the start, an optional subtitle below it, actions at the end and an icon or some other widget like a radio button as a prefix. These rows can also be expanded to reveal nested rows or anything else that fits the need. So far every application using these patterns implemented the rows by hand for each and every row. It made using these a bit cumbersome and it led to inconsistencies in sizing, even inside a single application. To make these patterns easier to use, we implemented HdyActionRow, HdyComboRow and HdyExpanderRow.

How did you get started with Linux?

The Linux mascot is a penguin named Tux, so we thought it appropriate to celebrate Penguin Awareness Day for the conservation of penguin habitats and talk a little bit (more) about Linux. A few fun penguin facts: These furry creatures are flightless yet part of the bird family. Some are large, like the Emperor penguin, and some are small, like those found in New Zealand. And, the Gentoo penguin is known to swim up to a speed of 21 miles per hour! Now, for the Linux bit. I asked our writer community to describe the moment they learned about Linux or the moment they got it up on running on their machine. Here's what they shared. Read more