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Gadgets

Wireless personal drone detector runs Linux

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Linux
Gadgets

APlus Mobile is seeking Kickstarter funding for a Linux-based “Personal Drone Detection System” that detects nearby drones using mesh grid triangulation.

It sounds at first like an April Fool’s joke delayed in development, but it appears to be legit: APlus Mobile and its R&D spinoff Domestic Drone Countermeasures (DDC) have launched a Kickstarter project for a device that will detect when a drone aircraft approaches within 50 feet. The Personal Drone Detection System is available in $499 (alpha testing) and $699 (beta testing) funding packages, shipping in November 2014 and April 2015, respectively.

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Goofy-looking security guard bot runs Linux

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Linux
Gadgets

GS4 unveiled an autonomous, Linux-based robot security guard called Bob, based on a MetraLabs “Scitos A5″ robot programmed by the University of Birmingham.

U.K.-based security firm GS4 Technology has launched a three week trial at its Gloucestershire headquarters of a robot called Bob that was designed by the University of Birmingham School of Computer Science. GS4 will evaluate Bob’s performance as a trainee security officer. Bob is part of a £7.2 million ($12.2 million) project called STRANDS, hosted by the University of Birmingham, with an aim of expanding the role of robots in the workplace.

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Google Fit: Google’s new health service to challenge Apple’s HealthKit

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Android
Google
Gadgets

However, there is a need for more clarity on whether Google Fit will be integrated into the next version of Android, or offered as a standalone app that could be downloaded independently.

It added: “One source with knowledge of Google’s plans said Google Fit would allow a wearable device that measures data like steps or heart rate to interface with Google’s cloud-based services, and become part of the Google Fit ecosystem.”

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What To Expect From The First Ubuntu Smart Devices?

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Ubuntu
Gadgets

After testing the developer’s build of Ubuntu Touch smartphone OS in 2013, the company behind Ubuntu Linux (Canonical) has finally confirmed that it will soon release its first batch of entry-level smartphones running the open-source operating system later this year. The company has teamed up with Meizu and Bq to be its initial Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs). As compared to the open source Firefox OS released last year in consortium with Alacatel, the mobile edition of Ubuntu is not an HTML 5 or browser-based ecosystem. Similar to Android, it loads native Ubuntu applications (messaging, phone, and camera) flawlessly, even with the absence of wireless connectivity.

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Turning a smartphone into a PC in a pocket: Q&A with Analogix

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Android
Gadgets

Q: Where and why is SlimPort being implemented?

A: SlimPort was first implemented in the Google Nexus 4 back in 2012 and has continued to be used in a number of high-end tablets and smartphones from Fujitsu, Asustek, LG, and ZTE, as well as finding its way into Chromebooks from brands like Hewlett-Packard (HP), among others. The key is that the technology enables more features and can reduce costs. For example, users want to have the ability to take mobile audio and video and get it up on a big screen. Previously, the ability to get the video off of a tablet/smartphone was typically done by running it through a micro-HDMI port. Using SlimPort allowed the OEMs to drop the micro-HDMI port and simply run everything through the five-pin micro-USB port that is needed for charging. SlimPort simply takes control of the connector when a SlimPort dongle is plugged in, and while the devices are connected, SlimPort enables the display to also charge the mobile device. In 2013, support for Full HD was added but we really expect the technology to take off this year with SlimPort Pro.

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Tizen-powered Samsung Z smartphone with open source mobile OS

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Linux
Gadgets

The Samsung Z looks and feels very much like Samsung's Android smartphones. There's the tiles section at the top of the home screen, with some app icons at the botton, and there's the pull-down notifications and settings tray at the very top. You also get the hardware Back and Menu buttons, in addition to the main Home button. The Settings app looks almost identical to Samsung's Android version.

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World’s first emotional robot runs Linux

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Linux
Gadgets

SoftBank and Aldeberan have teamed up on a Linux-based, $1,930 personal robot named Pepper that can read emotions and respond autonomously.

As we gradually approach the “singularity” when robots overtake human intelligence, we often comfort ourselves in believing robots will never duplicate our often troublesome capacity for emotion. Yet such James Kirkian sentiments may prove suspect as roboticists make robots more sensitive to emotions while using emotional expression to communicate.

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Pi-based private cloud storage device runs Linux

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Linux
Gadgets

A $149 “Sherlybox” NAS debuted on Kickstarter today, based on a Raspberry Pi core, and offering a secure VPN that creates an invite-only cloud service.

After Polish startup called “Sher.ly” developed a VPN and file-sharing software product of the same name, the developers felt it needed a little kick with the help of a Kickstarter-funded hardware device called “Sherlybox.” The device is somewhat similar to another Linux-based Kickstarter project called Lima, which has yet to enter commercial pre-sales more than 10 months after being funded. While the Lima was built from scratch, the current Sherlybox prototype is based on a Raspberry Pi Model B single-board computer.

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A Crock-Pot slow cooker with Wi-Fi smarts (hands-on)

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Linux
Gadgets

The $130 Linux-based Crock-Pot WeMo Smart Slow Cooker was unveiled at CES earlier this year, and will be available in stores soon. I got to spend some time with one this week and thought I'd share some early impressions ahead of the full review. Belkin and Jarden Home Brands' app-controlled slow cooker struck me as an unlikely smart home contender at first. Slow cookers are about as low maintenance as possible, so how much value could WeMo integration add to something already so straightforward?

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Samsung to Try Out Tizen Smartphone in Russia

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Linux
Gadgets

Samsung appears to be edging away from Google with the announcement of a new smartphone that runs on the Tizen OS rather than on Android. The System Z has a long and difficult path ahead if its developers want to set it up as an independent smartphone system.

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More in Tux Machines

Meet CSI Linux: A Linux Distribution For Cyber Investigation And OSINT

With the steady rise of cybercrimes, companies and government agencies are involving themselves more in setting up cyber investigation labs to tackle the crime happening over the Internet. Software tools are like arms that play a significant role in the investigation process. Hence, Computer Forensics, Incident Response, and Competitive Intelligence professionals have developed a Cyber forensics focussed operating system called CSI Linux. Read more

Today in Techrights

today's leftovers

  • Word Embeddings Simplified

    Recently I have been dwelling with a lot of NLP problems and jargons. The more I read about it the more I find it intriguing and beautiful of how we humans try to transfer this knowledge of a language to machines. How much ever we try because of our laid back nature we try to use already existing knowledge or existing materials to be used to make machines understand a given language. But machines as we know it can only understand digits or lets be more precise binary(0s and 1s). When I first laid my hands on NLP this was my first question, how does a machine understand that something is a word or sentence or a character.

  • Coronavirus wreaking havoc in the tech industry, including FOSS

    At FOSS Linux, you may wonder why we are covering the coronavirus and how it relates to Linux and open-source software? Aside from the apparent effect of the slowdown in components required for Linux to run on,  the coronavirus outbreak directly impacts several products featured in FOSS Linux over the past year. Purism – the brains behind the Librem 5 phones powered by PureOS are the most directly affected by the outbreak, suffering production delays. Dell – the titanic computer manufacturer, has hinted at a possibility of interruption of supplies, which could affect the availability of the Dell XPS 13 Developer Edition preloaded with Ubuntu 18.04. System76 – these creators of Pop_OS! 19.10 recently announced their foray into the world of laptop design and manufacturing.  The coronavirus could adversely affect this endeavor. Pine64 – maker of the Pinebook Pro, the affordable laptop which supports most, if not all, Linux distros featured on FOSS Linux also is under threat of production delays.

  • Announcing the release of Samza 1.3.1

    We have identified some issues with the previous release of Apache Samza 1.3.0.

  • Scientists develop open-source software to analyze economics of biofuels, bioproducts

    BioSTEAM is available online through the Python Package Index, at Pypi.org. A life cycle assessment (LCA) add-on to BioSTEAM to quantify the environmental impacts of biorefineries -- developed by CABBI Postdoctoral Researcher Rui Shi and the Guest Research Group -- is also set to be released in March 2020. To further increase availability of these tools, Guest's team is also designing a website with a graphical user interface where researchers can plug new parameters for a biorefinery simulation into existing configurations, and download results within minutes.

    BioSTEAM's creators drew on open-source software developed by other researchers, including a data bank with 20,000 chemicals and their thermodynamic properties.

  • Mirantis Joins Linux Foundation's LF Networking Community

    Mirantis, the open cloud company, today announced it has joined the Linux Foundation's LF Networking (LFN) community, which facilitates collaboration and operational excellence across open networking projects. LFN software and projects provide platforms and building blocks for Network Infrastructure and Services across Service Providers, Cloud Providers, Enterprises, Vendors, and System Integrators that enable rapid interoperability, deployment, and adoption. LF Networking supports the largest set of networking projects with the broadest community in the industry that collaborate on this opportunity.

  • Google Announces The 200 Open-Source Projects For GSoC 2020

    Google's Summer of Code initiative for getting students involved with open-source development during the summer months is now into its sixteenth year. This week Google announced the 200 open-source projects participating in GSoC 2020.  Among the 200 projects catching our eye this year are GraphicsFuzz, Blender, Debian, FFmpeg, Fedora, FreeBSD, Gentoo, GNOME, Godot Engine, KDE, Mozilla, Pitivi, The GNU Project, VideoLAN, and X.Org. The complete list of GSoC 2020 organizations can be found here. 

  • Myst (or, The Drawbacks to Success)

    After listening to the cultural dialog — or shouting match! — which has so long surrounded Myst, one’s first encounter with the actual artifact that spurred it all can be more than a little anticlimactic. Seen strictly as a computer game, Myst is… okay. Maybe even pretty good. It strikes this critic at least as far from the best or worst game of its year, much less of its decade, still less of all gaming history. Its imagery is well-composited and occasionally striking, its sound and music design equally apt. The sense of desolate, immersive beauty it all conveys can be strangely affecting, and it’s married to puzzle-design instincts that are reasonable and fair. Myst‘s reputation in some quarters as impossible, illogical, or essentially unplayable is unearned; apart from some pixel hunts and perhaps the one extended maze, there’s little to really complain about on that front. On the contrary: there’s a definite logic to its mechanical puzzles, and figuring out how its machinery works through trial and error and careful note-taking, then putting your deductions into practice, is genuinely rewarding, assuming you enjoy that sort of thing.

    At same time, though, there’s just not a whole lot of there there. Certainly there’s no deeper meaning to be found; Myst never tries to be about more than exploring a striking environment and solving intricate puzzles. “When we started, we wanted to make a [thematic] statement, but the project was so big and took so much effort that we didn’t have the energy or time to put much into that part of it,” admits Robyn Miller. “So, we decided to just make a neat world, a neat adventure, and say important things another time.” And indeed, a “neat world” and “neat adventure” are fine ways of describing Myst.

GNU/Linux on Laptops/Desktops

  • DStv Now working on Linux streaming problems

    MyBroadband readers have complained of problems when trying to stream DStv Now on Linux devices. Previously, users running Linux operating systems were able to watch DStv Now through a web browser such as Chrome or Firefox. However, since the beginning of 2020, these users have been unable to watch shows on the platform, likely due to a change in the Widevine DRM system. Similar problems with international streaming platforms have been reported this year, indicating that the issue could be a common DRM issue rather than individual platform changes.

  • A Tale of Four Laptops, or, How Lenovo’s Digital River Customer Support Sucks

    In September, I made a mistake… We needed new laptops for Dmitry and Agata, and after much deliberation, we decided upon Lenovo Yoga C940’s. These are very cool devices, with HDR screens, nice keyboard, built-in pen, two-in-one convertible — everything in short for the discerning Krita hacker. I accidentally ordered the S940 instead — two of them. These are very awful devices, without a pen, no touch-screen, don’t fold, don’t have HDR, don’t even have normal USB ports. Overpriced, under-powered — why the heck does Lenovo call these Ideapads yoga’s? I have no idea. Well, no problem, I thought. I’ll just return them and ordered the C940 instead. The C940’s arrived in time for our BlenderCon sprintlet, and were all what one expected them to be. And I filled in Lenovo’s web form to return the S940’s. [...] I’ve bought Yoga’s, Thinkpads and even Ideapads in great numbers in the past twenty years… But I think it’s time to make a change.

  • Mesa's RADV Vulkan Driver Adding Compatibility For Use With The AMD Radeon GPU Profiler

    To date the Mesa "RADV" Radeon Vulkan driver hasn't supported AMD's GPUOpen Radeon GPU Profiler but that is changing. With RADV being developed by the community -- principally by the likes of Valve, Red Hat, and Google -- this Mesa Vulkan driver hasn't supported all of the tooling AMD makes available under the GPUOpen umbrella and is tailored for their official AMD Linux/Windows Vulkan drivers. While AMDVLK and the Radeon Software for Linux driver have supported the company's Radeon GPU Profiler, RADV is now adding compatibility for this profiler.

  • Intel Compute Runtime Adds OCLOC Multi-Device Compilation

    Version 20.07.15711 of the Intel Compute Runtime was released this morning. The Intel Compute Runtime 20.07.15711 is what principally provides their modern OpenCL implementation for Broadwell graphics hardware and newer with current at OpenCL 2.1 for all generations from Broadwell through the yet-to-be-released Gen12 Tiger Lake.

  • openSUSE Tumbleweed – Review of the week 2020/08

    After a week of hacking on different stuff and being in the background for Tumbleweed while Oliver took on the role of Release Manager, I am back with you. And we have released three snapshots this week (0214, 0218 and 0219). The gap between 0214 and 0218 was the integration of glibc 2.31. But of course, there was more happening this week. So here comes the list:

  • Fedora program update: 2020-08

    I have weekly office hours in #fedora-meeting-1. Drop by if you have any questions or comments about the schedule, Changes, elections, or anything else.