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Gadgets

'Open-source' Rotary Cellphone

Filed under
Hardware
Gadgets

  • You can now own a mobile phone with a rotary dial — if that’s really something you want

    While some would be quite literally lost without theirs, smartphones that give us access to a world of information in our pocket but constantly ask to be pulled out of there and stared at have become so complicated many people now find them annoying.
    This has triggered the rise of “dumbphones”, which look like the mobile phones of the past while still having some modern technologies.
    These devices range from the quite cheap to the weirdly expensive.
    Some customers opt for these phones to disconnect from the always online world – while others merely want to be seen to be doing so.
    But if you’re looking for the ultimate disconnected phone, one tinkerer has the perfect device.
    Justine Haupt is an associate scientist at the Brookhaven National Laboratory in New York.
    She’s also the creator of the open source Rotary Cellphone, a mobile phone with a tactile spinning dial like the kind that was common on house phones until around the 1980s.

  • Rotary Cellphone
  • Open-source rotary cellphone

    Justine Haupt made this handsome and completely functional rotary cellphone. Her design is open-source and you can even buy a case kit from her company, Sky's Edge Robotics. You have to find and carefully modify your own rotary dial, though -- they're apparently no longer made -- as well as a few other components.

Librem 5: Full Screen, Power and New Recruit

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Gadgets

  • Better Fullscreen App Support on the Librem 5

    The phone’s shell is responsible for how apps are displayed. Even the smallest improvement to how apps render can have a positive impact on all Librem 5 applications – enabling more of the rich application ecosystem in PureOS to work better on mobile.

    [...]

    The UI is still accessible whenever it’s needed, but it’s now smart enough to know when to get out of the way.

    For non-convergent desktop apps you can employ UI scaling, which will allow you to run most FOSS apps on the Librem 5 in non-docked mode.

  • Librem 5 Power Management Improvements up to Jan 2020

    Power-management improvements continue to find their way into PureOS. We still have a ways to go before the battery can make it through a day, but progress is steady. Let’s go over a few of the latest changes.

  • Julian Sparber: Joining Purism

    This announcement is long overdue, but better late than never Smile

    About 6 months ago I joined Purism, where I’m working on the Librem 5 phone. I’m in good company, since there are already a number of other fellow GNOME friends on the Librem 5 team, including Adrien Plazas, Tobias Bernard, and Mohammed Sadiq.

Devices: Librem 5, USB, SB Servo, and Raspberry Pi/OSMC

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Gadgets
  • Librem 5 Gyro and Ambient Light Sensor Progress

    The software stack around sensors is coming together piece by piece. It will take longer for features like auto-rotate to start working, but the raw data is there and ready to be used by PureOS and software developers.

  • USB armory Mk II: A secure computer on a USB stick featuring open source hardware design

    The hardware security professionals at F-Secure have created a new version of the USB armory – a computer on a USB stick built from the ground up to be secure.

  • SB Servo is a powerful open source digital serial servo motor

    SB Servo motors have been created to offer affordable, powerful and open-source digital servo motors with Torque, Speed, Position Feedback and full 360-degree rotation mode. Early bird pricing starts from £10 and deliveries are expected to start next month during March 2020.

  • OSMC Skin update

    While we usually release a single monthly update, we've made a number of improvements to the OSMC skin and would like to get these changes out as promptly as possible for feedback.

    [...]

    To get the latest and greatest version of OSMC, simply head to My OSMC -> Updater and check for updates manually on your exising OSMC set up. Of course — if you have updates scheduled automatically you should receive an update notification shortly.

    If you enjoy OSMC, please follow us on Twitter, like us on Facebook and consider making a donation if you would like to support further development.

    You may also wish to check out our Store, which offers a wide variety of high quality products which will help you get the best of OSMC.

Why the $150 PinePhone is not ready to replace my Android device

Filed under
Gadgets

The PinePhone--mention that device to any Linux and open source enthusiast, and you'll see their face light up with possibility. Mention that same device to anyone outside that realm, and you'd be lucky to get a shrug.

For those who don't know, PINE64 has been working on an open source smartphone that can run nearly any flavor of Linux. But this isn't just vaporware or a pipe dream--units have begun to ship. The units are called the BraveHeart edition, and they are something special.

But special isn't always a good thing.

Let me explain.

[...]

In order for the PinePhone to succeed, it'll have to chip away at a very challenging market, which includes the Android OS with nearly 90% global market share. That's a daunting task and to attempt that by selling devices without an operating system is a mistake.

Why? The platform is the thing.

Hardware is nothing without a platform. Android devices would be worthless to the community at large without Android. Apple phones wouldn't be nothing but chips and screens without iOS. The PinePhone is nothing but a pet project without Linux.

I realize what PINE64 is trying to do--or at least I think I do. The company is releasing the hardware with the hopes that all distributions will pick them up and start developing for them, such that every Linux distribution will offer a flashable image for the device. Why? So, in the end, it can sell devices to consumers that most Linux distributions will work on.

Read more

Here’s Ubuntu Touch Running on the PinePhone

Filed under
Ubuntu
Gadgets

UBports’ Marius Gripsgård has shared today on YouTube a more in depth overview of the Ubuntu Touch mobile operating system on the PinePhone Linux phone.

The PinePine is already shipping to customers who pre-ordered the BraveHeart edition, but the new Linux phone doesn’t ship with an operating system pre-installed. Several options are available though, including Ubuntu Touch and Plasma Mobile.

Its makers, PINE64, are currently waiting for a Linux mobile OS vendor to port their operating system to the PinePhone before shipping the second edition in spring 2020, and I really hope that Ubuntu Touch will be the first option they choose.

Read more

Setting the Record Straight: PinePhone Misconceptions

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Gadgets

The misconception concerns the openness of the PinePhone. On numerous occasions I’ve seen the PinePhone being refereed to as closed-source on one level or another. I don’t know the origin of this misconception nor do I understand the reason why it has become propagated throughout the internet. What I do know, however, is that it has been repeatedly quoted in online articles covering the PinePhone or other Linux devices for over a year now.

So let’s set the record straight: the PinePhone is not ‘full of closed-source firmware’ and, moreover, is one of the most open devices out there.

Read more

Also: announcing arduino-copilot

Easy Librem 5 App Development: Flashlight

Filed under
Development
Gadgets
HowTos

In my first post on easy application development on the Librem 5 I discussed how to turn a simple shell script that takes a screenshot into a full graphical app with only a few extra lines of code. In this post I will follow up with an even simpler application that took about twenty minutes to write with much of that time involved in reading documentation.

My Bright Idea

The interesting thing about smart phones is how many other devices they have replaced beyond a regular phone. For instance, there used to be a market for small, pocket-sized digital cameras, but now many people just use the cameras on their smart phones. While some people still do keep a pocket flashlight with them, many people just use the light on their smart phone.

I realized that a flashlight app would be another great way to showcase just how easy it is to develop applications for the Librem 5. As applications go the requirements are pretty simple: you need a button to turn on the light, a button to turn off the light, and a button to close the app.

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MIG and Astra Linux start selling new, secure tablet with Russian operating system

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Security
Gadgets

Russian companies Mobile Inform Group (MIG) and Astra Linux have started selling the new MIG T10 x86 tablet powered by the Astra Linux OS, an operating system of domestic origin, reports Cnews.ru. The device is resistant to a wide range of temperatures.

The device corresponds to all the security standards of the Russian security services and the military. It is powered by the tetra-core Intel Appololake N3450 2.2 GHz processor and has a 11,700 mAh battery. The price of the tablet with the pre-installed Astra Linux OS starts from RUB 105,118.

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Syncthing: Open Source P2P File Syncing Tool

Filed under
Software
Gadgets

Syncthing is an open-source peer-to-peer file synchronization tool that you can use for syncing files between multiple devices (including an Android phone).

Usually, we have a cloud sync solution like MEGA or Dropbox to have a backup of our files on the cloud while making it easier to share it.

But, what do you do if you want to sync your files across multiple devices without storing them on the cloud?

That is where Syncthing comes to the rescue.

Read more

PinePhone ‘Brave Heart’ Starts Shipping, Here’s What to Expect

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Gadgets

If you were plucky enough to pre-order a PinePhone Brave Heart edition last month you may be interested to know that devices start shipping from January 17, 2020.

Yes, this week!

Pine64’s Lukasz Erecinski shares the date in the company’s latest monthly update, explaining: “We’re now ready […] to confirm that PinePhones will begin shipping …on January 17th 2020. The dispatch process will take a couple of days, however, so your unit may ship on the 20th or 25th. At any rate, you’ll have your PinePhone soon”.

The handsets are being shipped through a company called Asendia who, Erecinski says, offer a good balance of shipping times (important to buyers) and cost (important to Pine64, who don’t exactly make huge profits all on this tech).

Read more

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More in Tux Machines

Security, FUD, Openwashing and Threats

  • Security updates for Tuesday

    Security updates have been issued by Debian (curl and otrs2), Fedora (NetworkManager-ssh and python-psutil), Mageia (ipmitool, libgd, libxml2_2, nextcloud, radare2, and upx), openSUSE (inn and sudo), Oracle (kernel, ksh, python-pillow, and thunderbird), Red Hat (curl, kernel, nodejs:10, nodejs:12, procps-ng, rh-nodejs10-nodejs, ruby, and systemd), SUSE (dpdk, firefox, java-1_7_1-ibm, java-1_8_0-ibm, libexif, libvpx, nodejs10, nodejs8, openssl1, pdsh, slurm_18_08, python-azure-agent, python3, and webkit2gtk3), and Ubuntu (libapache2-mod-auth-mellon, libpam-radius-auth, and rsync).

  • New Critical RCE Bug in OpenBSD SMTP Server Threatens Linux Distros [Ed: Typical FUD associating "Linux" with a package that GNU/Linux distros do not come with]

    Security researchers have discovered a new critical vulnerability in the OpenSMTPD email server. An attacker could exploit it remotely to run shell commands as root on the underlying operating system.

  • New OpenSMTPD RCE Flaw Affects Linux and OpenBSD Email Servers [Ed: Again attributing to operating systems bugs in pertinent packages they may not even have]

    OpenSMTPD has been found vulnerable to yet another critical vulnerability that could allow remote attackers to take complete control over email servers running BSD or Linux operating systems. OpenSMTPD, also known as OpenBSD SMTP Server, is an open-source implementation of the Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP) to deliver messages on a local machine or to relay them to other SMTP servers. It was initially developed as part of the OpenBSD project but now comes pre-installed on many UNIX-based systems.

  • Y2K bug has a 2020 echo

    The New Scientist reports on problems with software caused by an echo of the Y2K bug that had every excited in the late 1990s. It turns out one of the fixes then was to kick various software cans down the road to 2020. In theory that gave people 20 years to find long term answers to the problems. In some cases they might have expected software refreshes to have solved the issue. [...] This happens because Unix time started on January 1 1970. Time since then is stored as a 32-bit integer. On January 19 2038, that integer will overflow. Most modern applications and operating systems have been patched to fix this although there are some compatibility problems. The real issue comes with embedded hardware, think of things like medical devices, which will need replacing some time in the next 18 years.

  • The “Cloud Snooper” malware that sneaks into your Linux servers [Ed: They don't want to mention that people actually need to install this malware on GNU/Linux for dangers to become viable. Typical Sophos FUD/sales.]
  • Cybersecurity alliance launches first open source messaging framework for security tools [Ed: Openwash of proprietary software firms]

    Launched by the Open Cybersecurity Alliance (OCA), a consortium of cybersecurity vendors including IBM, Crowdstrike, and McAfee, on Monday, the OCA said that OpenDXL Ontology is the "first open source language for connecting cybersecurity tools through a common messaging framework."

  • Microsoft uses its expertise in malware to help with fileless attack detection on Linux [Ed: Truly laughable stuff as Microsoft specialises in adding back doors, then abusing those who speak about it]
  • Azure Sphere, Microsoft's Linux-Powered IoT Security Service, Launches [Ed: Microsoft is Googlebombing "Linux" again; you search for Linux news, you get Microsoft Azure (surveillance) and proprietary malware, instead.]

KDE: Video Competition Winners, Atelier Plasmoid and Updates on Kube

  • KDE Video Competition Winners

    On the 20th of February, our first video contest finished and winners were decided by a panel of judges. This was the first time we run a video contest and we were really excited to see how much the community got involved, the quality of the videos and the onboarding effect that this contest would have. All the submitted videos show great effort on behalf of the creators and it was extremely difficult to select the winner -- at one point there was even a tie! But, at last, we were able to select a winner and finalists for each category. Without further ado, let's dive into the results:

  • Atelier Plasmoid – Update

    Yeah, I’m back! =D Now I have updated the Atelier plasmoid to use our beloved profiles setup. Profiles on Atelier are shared by any interface that uses AtCore Machine Info to lookup for each profile that you have saved of your machines. The quick print is now really quick: Select profile -> Connect -> Select File -> Print.

  • Last months in Kube

    The todo view’s goal is to have a small personal list of todos, acknowledging that you can only accomplish so much during a day, and there is no intention of turning this into a project management suite down the road. The idea is that you have a couple of lists as backlogs, and that you then pick a reasonable amount of items (<10 probably?) from those lists as currently in progress (that’s also how it’s stored in iCal). This then gives you a nice little list of things during the day/week/whatever suits you, that you can tick off. New items can quickly be entered using keyboard shortcuts (press “?”) and that’s about it for the time being. I think sub-todos might find their way eventually in there, but the rest should rather be quality of life improvements and eventually taking other sources of “things you need to act on” into account, such as emails that you should probably be answering or events that need to be prepared. The todo view was the last officially missing piece, so with that we are view-complete (feature complete may be a bit a stretch still).

  • Search in encrypted content and support for encrypted headers

    To fix this we’re going to start decrypting encrypted emails when syncing and indexing the encrypted content. That way we can make sure encrypted emails are just as usable as non-encrypted emails, at least as long as you’re using Kube. This means that in the future you will not only be able to search through all your email, it also means you get a more useful subject displayed than “…” or some other nonsense.

The Free Software Foundation's Code Hosting Plans

  • Coming soon: A new site for fully free collaboration

    As we said in an end-of-year post highlighting our work supporting free software development and infrastructure, the Free Software Foundation (FSF) is planning to launch a public code hosting and collaboration platform ("forge"), to launch in 2020. Members of the FSF tech team are currently reviewing ethical Web-based software that helps teams work on their projects, with features like merge requests, bug tracking, and other common tools. The new site will complement the current GNU and non-GNU Savannah servers, which we will continue to support and improve, in collaboration with their awesome volunteer team. (By the way, if you want to volunteer, please email savannah-hackers-public@gnu.org with a note about your interest!)

  • Free Software Foundation Aims To Launch Code Hosting / Collaboration Platform This Year

    The Free Software Foundation is planning to launch their own public code hosting and collaboration platform in 2020. The Free Software Foundation "Forge" will complement their existing and aging Savannah servers used for code hosting. The Free Software Foundation isn't looking to develop their own hosting/collaboration platform as an original GNU project but looking at an existing free software solution they can adapt for their purposes. The Free Software Foundation team is currently evaluating options based on practical and ethical criteria such as whether the JavaScript is deemed free software with LibreJS, wanting a solution not backed by a company, and other stringent free software requirements.

IBM/Red Hat/Fedora: Release Readiness Meetings, RHEL, Command Line Heroes, Satellite, OpenShift and Open Mainframe Project (OMP)

  • Changing the Release Readiness Meeting process

    If you’ve attended a Release Readiness Meeting in the last few years, you’ve noticed that there’s a lot of me asking for an update from a team and getting no response. This makes the meeting a lot less valuable for the project and for the people who attend. And because the Release Readiness Meeting is held after the first Go/No-Go meeting, there’s not much chance to fix unready issues. Let’s make this better. For Fedora 32, I’m changing the process a bit. Instead of waiting until an IRC meeting days before the release target, let’s start giving readiness updates sooner. I created a Release Readiness wiki page where teams can self-update asynchronously. If you’re representing a team in Fedora, you can start updating this now.

  • Fedora 31 : Install Unity 3D on Fedora Linux.

    If you want to install the Unity 3D software on Fedora 31 Linux distro then you can read my tutorial from this webpage.

  • Is an in-place RHEL upgrade the right choice for my business?

    Being on the latest version of Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) can have several advantages- like better performance, improved security, support for new hardware devices or even access to the latest version of applications. If you are a Linux system administrator looking to migrate your RHEL 7 systems to RHEL 8, you have two choices—an in-place upgrade to RHEL 8 or a clean installation of the operating system and re-deployment of your environment onto RHEL 8.

  • [S4:E3] Command Line Heroes: Personal Computers
  • What's new in the Red Hat Satellite upgrade process

    In this post we'll review a number of improvements that have been made to the Satellite upgrade process in the areas of technology, performance, and backend testing improvements and automation. Over the last several releases the Satellite engineering and QE teams have been focused on making the Red Hat Satellite upgrade process much faster and more predictable. The way the Satellite upgrades work has not changed—you will need to upgrade to each individual version of Satellite and you cannot skip versions. If you are running Satellite 6.4 and you want to go to Satellite 6.6, you will need to upgrade from Satellite 6.4 to Satellite 6.5, then to Satellite 6.6. These upgrades can be done back-to-back in the same outage window.

  • OpenShift Commons Briefing: Data Protection and Disaster Recovery Solutions with Venkat Kolli (Red Hat)

    As more and more business critical applications move to OpenShift platform, it is important to start thinking about how to protect these applications and application data. In this briefing, Red Hat’s Venkat Kolli walks through the different failure scenarios that will be impacting application availability in OpenShift and the different Backup & Disaster Recovery (DR) solutions that are designed to protect your OpenShift applications against these failures. While the traditional Backup & DR solutions have existed a while in Enterprise DataCenters, these solutions need to evolve to address the needs of the new container infrastructure. We will explore the differences between traditional approaches to backup & DR and the changes in approach required for OpenShift infrastructure.

  • Tech Preview: Get visibility into your OpenShift costs across your hybrid infrastructure

    Do you know if your OpenShift project is currently on budget? If you deploy more containers right now or if OpenShift dynamically increases capacity, would that put your project in the red? Red Hat is introducing a new cost management SaaS offering that is included at no additional charge with your Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform subscription. Cost management is an OpenShift Container Platform service that is currently available in Technology Preview. The service, which customers access from cloud.redhat.com/beta, gives you visibility into your costs across on-premises and cloud environments. With cost management for OpenShift, you can easily aggregate costs across hybrid cloud infrastructure (on-premises, Amazon Web Services, Azure, with more cloud platforms on the roadmap) and track budget requirements.

  • Open Mainframe Project Launches Ambitus, Virtual Zowe Hackathon

    The Open Mainframe Project (OMP) has launched a new community of developers called Ambitus to better understand how their existing open source environment can be implemented and operated on a mainframe. Ambitus joins 8 other OMP projects including Zowe, which will launch its first virtual hackathon on February 23.