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Software: Rav1e, Cockpit, SSH Tools and Curl

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  • Rav1e 0.3.1 Is 25~40% Faster At Low Speed Levels For Rust-Based AV1 Encoding

    It was not even two full weeks ago that Rav1e 0.3 was released with speed optimizations and other AV1 encoding enhancements while released on Tuesday was Rav1e 0.3.1 with a change to boost encode speeds at lower levels.

    The principal change with Rav1e 0.3.1 for this Rust-written AV1 video encoder is 25~40% better performance at lower speed levels (two through five). This big speed-up is by disabling fine directional prediction and intra-block transform splitting within inter-frames. The consequence of disabling these features for the double digit percentage speed improvements is approximately 1~2% lower video quality at these levels, which the developers deemed to be an acceptable trade for the faster encode times.

  • Cockpit Project: Cockpit 213

    Cockpit is the modern Linux admin interface. We release regularly. Here are the release notes from version 213.

  • Tools for SSH key management

    I use SSH constantly. Every day I find myself logged in to multiple servers and Pis (both in the same room as me and over the internet). I have many devices I need access to, and different requirements for gaining access, so in addition to using various SSH/SCP command options, I have to maintain a config file with all the connection details.

  • Daniel Stenberg: The command line options we deserve

    A short while ago curl‘s 230th command line option was added (it was --mail-rcpt-allowfails). Two hundred and thirty command line options!

    A look at curl history shows that on average we’ve added more than ten new command line options per year for very long time. As we don’t see any particular slowdown, I think we can expect the number of options to eventually hit and surpass 300.

    Is this manageable? Can we do something about it? Let’s take a look.

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Games: The Universim, Zoria: Age of Shattering, Quiplash 2 InterLASHional, Plastris, Something Ate My Alien, Gutwhale

  • City-builder god sim 'The Universim' has a massive update with bridges and pretty towerblocks

    The Universim from Crytivo continues pushing through Early Access updates, towards an eventual release later this year. A massive update is out now, which amongst other things adds in some fancy bridges to build. Crytivo's aim with The Universim is to create what they're calling a "a new breed of God Game", to bring in features from some classic with a modern physics engine and blending in a city-builder. So far, so good. You can build a big beautiful city across an entire planet, and guide your Nuggets a little with various god powers. It oozes charm and the narrator brings some nice comedic value to it. The latest update is another step forward in the overall content available. While bridges are a great (and needed) addition to the game, personally I'm more excited about the huge Residential overhaul. From the Stone Age to the Modern Age, there's a huge amount more variety in the buildings where your little Nuggets reside. It gives the game that bit more character to it.

  • Party-based RPG with base management 'Zoria: Age of Shattering' now has a Linux demo available

    Tiny Trinket Games emailed to mention their upcoming party-based RPG, Zoria: Age of Shattering, now has a Linux demo available for you to try out right now. A story-driven, party-based RPG that will have a focus on "strong" tactical elements with turn-based battles that have free movement rather than tiles, plus base and follower management. Taking place in the fantasy world of Zoria, a world filled with magic, ancient history, tumultuous politics, and countless mysteries. Tiny Trinket are promising something interesting too, with it being hand-crafted adventuring with multiple branching paths.

  • Jackbox Games goes global with Quiplash 2 InterLASHional out now, we have a few keys to give away

    Quiplash 2 InterLASHional is the first time Jackbox Games have attempted to go global, with this being their first fully localized party game. For English speakers, it's basically the same as Quiplash 2 found in The Jackbox Party Pack 3 but expanding the languages is vitally important for a game developer since it's one of the best ways to expand their reach. Obviously that's good for people want to play where English isn't their best language, a wonderful bit of "quality of life". Now it's available in English, French, Italian, German, and Spanish with a bunch of extra content for each language.

  • Plastris is a 'hyper casual' puzzle game with a wonderful style out now on Linux

    Plastris from developer Khud0 is a 'hyper casual' puzzle game, where all you need to do is fill all the tiles on the screen with simple clicks and it's so weirdly satisfying. Releasing in March 2020, with Linux support arriving a few days ago. I decided to picked up a personal copy, since it's only £1.69. I will admit, the term 'hyper casual' is a new one to me. Turns out, it's a thing, and a term that came into light a few years ago with a new breed of casual mobile games. All you're doing is clicking, and filling. However, you're given a very specific fill-shape, so you also need to use the mouse right-click to remove some you've filled, to be able to complete each level. That's it. Hyper casual? Yeah, sure is. The main thing is how super accessible they are and Plastris is certainly that.

  • Something Ate My Alien has a curious mixture of action, digging and puzzle platforming - demo up

    Something Ate My Alien is now confirmed to be launching in June, although there's no exact date they at least have a release window now for their intriguing gameplay mix of action, platforming, puzzles and digging. There's also now a demo. In Something Ate My Alien, you're tasked with digging through different worlds to find all the items required for the pirate who hijacked your mining ship. During the adventure on each planet you have to battle environmental dangers, fight off wildlife, solve secret puzzle chambers, and all this while surviving on a depleting oxygen supply and a threat far scarier than the local wildlife.

  • Gutwhale is a claustrophobic 'finite roguelite' action game taking place in a digestive system

    Taking place entirely in a digestive system, Gutwhale is a 'finite roguelite' action game about managing your limited ammo in a very cramped space. Stuffed Wombat, the developer, said the only reason the game actually exists is that they were fired from their job due to Coronavirus so they took it as the perfect opportunity to finally release a game with help from Franek and Britt Brady. [...] Currently, the Linux and macOS versions are only available on itch.io as they haven't had enough testing. I've played it for a good while today and it's a lot of fun and very challenging. Works perfectly with keyboard input, although one button prompt on the Logitech F310 gamepad was wrong as it says B to respawn when it's X. Apart from that, it does work great!

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