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Games: Estranged: Act II, Helltaker and Soldat

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Gaming
  • First person exploration adventure Estranged: Act II is out

    Acting as a standalone sequel to the free Estranged: Act I, solo developer Alan Edwardes has now released Estranged: Act II.

    It's a first-person adventure that mixes in plenty of exploration in different environments, a few puzzles and a little action and horror too. A thoroughly mixed bag of genres blended together. You assume the role of a lone fisherman, stranded on a mysterious island during a violent storm.

  • Free to Play Puzzle-Dating Sim Helltaker Now Available on Linux and Steam OS

    Vanripper (Lukasz Piskorz) has announced that free to play puzzle-dating sim Helltaker is now available on Linux, and Steam OS.

    Launching on May 11th, the game is a fusion of visual novel dating sim and puzzle game. You have entered hell for one purpose- to create a harem from cute demon girls.

    Play through navigation based puzzles with limited moves, and attempt to reach multiple demon girls at the end. These puzzles can be skipped if you desire.

  • Classic multiplayer action game Soldat is now open source

    Soldat, a side-scrolling multiplayer shooter that was ridiculously popular in the early 2000s is now open source.

    They're now working on Soldat 2, which will be a much upgraded Unity remake with all sorts of advanced features. To give back to the community though, the classic Soldat has been put up on GitHub under the MIT license. Interestingly, this is not the current live version but an in-progess 1.8 build with some key differences

You can build you own Devolver Digital bundle and save monies

  • You can build you own Devolver Digital bundle and save monies

    If you're after some new games to kick-start your week, you should check out the Devolver Digital bundle over on Humble Store. It's one of their special build-it-yourself bundles allowing to pick a few games, and get a higher discount if you pick up more at the same time.

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today's howtos

Meet RecApp, a New Screen Recording App for Linux Desktop

RecApp is a simple open-source screen recorder tool. It doesn’t boast of huge features but gives you enough to record your screen with a simple user interface. We have plenty of screen recorders available for Linux. Abhishek prefers to use Kazam while I like using SimpleScreenrecorder. Neither of us use the GNOME’s built-in screen recorder. Recently we were contacted by the developer of RecApp, a new screen recording tool. Since I like experimenting with different applications, I took it upon myself to cover RecApp as this week’s open source software highlight. Read more

Security and DRM: CAs, Open Source Security Podcast, Reproducible Builds and Cars That Refuse to Work

  • How you get multiple TLS certificate chains from a server certificate

    However, several certificates can have the same keypair and X.509 Subject Name, provided that other attributes differ. One such attribute is the issuer that signed them (including whether this is a self-signed CA root certificate). So the first thing is that having more than one certificate for an issuer is generally required to get multiple chains. If you only have one certificate for each issuer, you can pretty much only build a single chain.

    There are three places that these additional certificates for an issuer can come from; they can be sent by the server, they can be built into your certificate store in advance, or they can be cached because you saw them in some other context. The last is especially common with browsers, which often cache intermediate certificates that they see and may use them in preference to the intermediate certificate that a TLS server sends. Other software is generally more static about what it will use. My guess is that we're unlikely to have multiple certificates for a single CA root issuer, at least for modern CAs and modern root certificate sets as used by browsers and so on. This implies that the most likely place to get additional issuer certificates is from intermediate certificates sent by a server.

  • Josh Bressers: Episode 204 – What Would Apple Do?

    Josh and Kurt talk about some recent security actions Apple has taken. Not all are good, but in general Apple is doing things to benefit their customers (their customers are not advertisers). We also discuss some of the challenges when your customers are advertisers.

  • Security 101: Encryption, Hashing, and Encoding

    Encoding is a manner of transforming some data from one representation to another in a manner that can be reversed. This encoding can be used to make data pass through interfaces that restrict byte values (e.g., character sets), or allow data to be printed, or other transformations that allow data to be consumed by another system. Some of the most commonly known encodings include hexadecimal, Base 64, and URL Encoding. Reversing encoding results in the exact input given (i.e., is lossless), and can be done deterministically and requires no information other than the data itself. Lossless compression can be considered encoding in any format that results in an output that is smaller than the input. While encoding may make it so that the data is not trivially recognizable by a human, it offers no security properties whatsoever. It does not protect data against unauthorized access, it does not make it difficult to be modified, and it does not hide its meaning. Base 64 encoding is commonly used to make arbitrary binary data pass through systems only intended to accept ASCII characters. Specifically, it uses 64 characters (hence the name Base 64) to represent data, by encoding each 6 bits of raw data as a single output character. Consequently, the output is approximately 133% of the size of the input. The default character set (as defined in RFC 4648) includes the upper and lower case letters of the English alphabet, the digits 0-9, and + and /. The spec also defines a “URL safe” encoding where the extra characters are - and _.

  • Reproducible Builds: Reproducible Builds in June 2020

    One of the original promises of open source software is that distributed peer review and transparency of process results in enhanced end-user security. But whilst anyone may inspect the source code of free and open source software for malicious flaws, almost all software today is distributed as pre-compiled binaries. This allows nefarious third-parties to compromise systems by injecting malicious code into seemingly secure software during the various compilation and distribution processes.

  • Software Update Brings Subscription based Functions-on-Demand to BMW Cars

    Consumers used to select options like an air conditioner or a satellite navigation system at the time of purchase, but now BMW will have the option to enable or disable some of the features by software depending on whether you pay for a subscription. This obviously does not include critical or safety functions like breaks or airbags, but currently you have to pay a subscription to use active cruise control and adaptive M suspension among others. Car companies will also have to way find to handle second-hand cars, as a new owner may not be able to access all advertised functions without paying extra. Connected cars will also offer challenges in the future, as potentially your car could refuse to start depending on your social credit score, alcohol/drugs blood level, driving habits, a missed payment on the car loan, etc… Governments may also decide to mandate auto-fining drivers who exceed speed limits, park in the wrong location, and so on.

Open Hardware and Arduino

  • Feather-Sized Evo M51 Board Combines Atmel SAMD51 MCU with Intel MAX 10 FPGA

    Arduino unveiled its first FPGA board around two years ago with MKR Vidor 4000 combining an Intel Cyclone FPGA with Microchip SAMD21 Cortex-M0+ MCU in a form factor similar to Arduino Zero. But in case you are looking for an even smaller Arduino compatible FPGA board, Alorium Technology’s Evo M51 might be exactly what you are after. The Adafruit Feather-sized board is equipped with an Atmel SAMD51 Arm Cortex-M4F microcontroller coupled with an Intel MAX 10 FPGA.

  • Arduino Security Primer

    In order to save memory and improve security, our development team has chosen to introduce a hardware secure element to offload part of the cryptography algorithms computational load, as well as to generate, store, and manage certificates. For this reason, on the Arduino MKR family, Arduino Nano 33 IoT and Arduino Uno WiFi Rev2, you will find the secure element ATECC508A or ATECC608A manufactured by Microchip.

  • This puck-slapping robot will beat you in table hockey

    Mechanical table hockey games, where players are moved back and forth and swing their sticks with a series of knobs, can be a lot of fun; however, could one be automated? As Andrew Khorkin’s robotic build demonstrates, the answer is a definite yes — using an Arduino Mega and a dozen stepper motors to score goals on a human opponent.

  • A History of my Mechanical Keyboards

    Years ago, at a white elephant Christmas party, I ended up with leopard print keyboard stickers. I bought a new keyboard to get the most out of these stickers, and used it for months as the stickers began to wear off. However, the space bar broke in less than a year. I had gone through many keyboards over the years, and all of them had been disappointing with their disposable build quality and lack of longevity. I decided to try a Das Keyboard Ultimate. It was my first foray into the world of mechanical keyboards, and would lead to many years of trying different key switches and purchasing custom key caps. This post is a brief history of the various mechanical keyboards I’ve bought, sold and given away over the years.