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Leftovers: Canonical on Banks, Raspberry Pi and Curl

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  • A ‘Connected’ Bank – The power of data and analytics

    The next 10 years will redefine banking. What will differentiate top banks from their competitors? Data and derived insights.

    Banks across the globe have been immersed in their digital agenda and with customers adopting digital banking channels aggressively, banks are collecting massive volumes of data on how customers are interacting at various touch points. Apart from the health of balance sheets, what will differentiate top banks from the competition is how effectively these data assets will be used to make banking simpler and improve their products and services. The challenge for large global banks so far has been to capitalise on huge volumes of data that their siloed business units hold and are often constrained by manual processes, data duplication and legacy systems.

    The use cases for data and analytics in banking are endless. Massive data assets will mean that banks can more accurately gauge the risk of offering a loan to a customer. Banks are using data analytics to improve efficiency and increase productivity. Banks will be able to use their data to train machine learning (ML) algorithms that can automate many of their processes. Artificial Intelligence (AI) solutions have the potential to transform how banks deal with regulatory compliance issues, financial fraud and cybercrime. Banks will have to get better at using customer data for greater personalisation, enabling them to offer products and services tailored to individual consumers in real time. Today, banks have only just scratched the surface of data analytics.

    [...]

    For data analytics initiatives, banks now have the option of leveraging the best of open source technologies. Open source databases such as PostgreSQL, MongoDB and Apache Cassandra can deliver insights and handle any new source of data. With data models flexible enough for rich modern data, a distributed architecture built for cloud scale, and a robust ecosystem of tools, open source data platforms can help banks break free from data silos and enable them to scale their innovation.

  • Embedding computational thinking skills in our learning resources
  • Daniel Stenberg: Reducing mallocs for fun

    Everyone needs something fun to do in their spare time. And digging deep into curl internals is mighty fun!

    One of the things I do in curl every now and then is to run a few typical command lines and count how much memory is allocated and how many memory allocation calls that are made. This is good project hygiene and is a basic check that we didn’t accidentally slip in a malloc/free sequence in the transfer path or something.

    We have extensive memory checks for leaks etc in the test suite so I’m not worried about that. Those things we detect and fix immediately, even when the leaks occur in error paths – thanks to our fancy “torture tests” that do error injections.

    The amount of memory needed or number of mallocs used is more of a boiling frog problem. We add one now, then another months later and a third the following year. Each added malloc call is motivated within the scope of that particular change. But taken all together, does the pattern of memory use make sense? Can we make it better?

  • Daniel Stenberg: a Google grant for libcurl work

    Earlier this year I was the recipient of a monetary Google patch grant with the expressed purpose of improving security in libcurl.

    This was an upfront payout under this Google program describing itself as “an experimental program that rewards proactive security improvements to select open-source projects”.

    I accepted this grant for the curl project and I intend to keep working fiercely on securing curl. I recognize the importance of curl security as curl remains one of the most widely used software components in the world, and even one that is doing network data transfers which typically is a risky business. curl is responsible for a measurable share of all Internet transfers done over the Internet an average day. My job is to make sure those transfers are done as safe and secure as possible. It isn’t my only responsibility of course, as I have other tasks to attend to as well, but still.

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Audiocasts/Shows: Coder Radio, The Linux Link Tech Show, Talk Python and FLOSS Weekly

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  • Episode #287 Testing without dependencies, mocking in Python - [Talk Python To Me Podcast]

    We know our unit tests should be relatively independent from other parts of the system. For example, running a test shouldn't generally call a credit card possessing API and talk to a database when your goal is just to test the argument validation. And yet, your method does all three of those and more. What do you do? Some languages use elaborate dependency passing frameworks that go under the banner of inversion of control (IoC) and dependency injections (DI). In Python, the most common fix is to temporarily redefine what those two functions do using patching and mocking. On this episode, we welcome back Anna-Lena Pokes to talk us through the whole spectrum of test doubles, dummies, mocks, and more.

  • FLOSS Weekly 601: Open Source Creative - Blender, Gimp, Audacity

    Looking at open source software from a creative lens and discussing the importance and ease of using open-source software to make art, graphics, video, and more. Doc Searls and Jonathan Bennett talk with Jason van Gumster a creator, engineer, and host of the podcast, Open Source Creative. They talk about the positive side of customizing your workplace with open source software such as Blender, Gimp, Hydrogen, and Audacity. They also discuss the simplicity of open source creative software support and the great community surrounding open source creative software.

Ubuntu 20.10 Arrives Today! Here are 11 New Features in Ubuntu 20.10 Groovy Gorilla

Ubuntu 20.10 releases today. An Ubuntu fan may get excited about the new features it brings. Ubuntu 20.10 codenamed Groovy Gorilla is a non-LTS release with nine months of life cycle. You cannot expect drastic changes between subsequent releases. It doesn’t mean you won’t find new things in Ubuntu 20.10. There are some performance improvements, new Linux kernel and visual changes thanks to the latest release of GNOME 3.38 (and other desktop environments in various other Ubuntu flavors). Let’s see what new features Ubuntu 20.10 brings. Read more

Android Leftovers

How to influence people to join open source

If you are reading Opensource.com, you might be able to code, and you are probably reading this on an open source browser on some elusive Linux distro. You probably have not seen a browser ad in years because you are running an open source ad blocker. You feel warm and fuzzy when you think about penguins. Simply, you know the power of the force of open source and have made it part of your life. Sadly, not everyone has found the open source way yet. Their computers are painfully slow; they see more ads than content when they surf the web; they spend their money on patented and copyrighted junk. Some of these people may even be related to you—take your nieces and nephews, for example. Read more