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Android Leftovers

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  • ​Google beats back Oracle again in Java Android case

    To recap, Oracle claimed the 37 Java application programming interface (API) packages Google used to develop Android are covered by copyright. Of course, that's not really the issue. True, the the US Federal Circuit Court of Appeals foolishly ruled that APIs could be copyrighted. But the US District Court for the Northern District of California ruled in May 2016 that Google's use of the Java APIs were not subject to copyright licensing fees. Instead, Android's use of the APIs was covered by "fair use."

  • Google’s Open Source Fuchsia OS: The Mystery Linux Distro

    Few things are more tantalizing than a good mystery, and Google is making waves for an open source-centric mystery that may end up having profound implications. It all started in August when an extensive and unusual code repository for a new operating system called Fuchsia was discovered online, and now the growing source code set is on GitHub.

    Thus far, Google officials have been mostly mum on the aim of this operating system, although they have made a few things clear in chat forums. Two developers listed on Fuchsia's GitHub page — Christopher Anderson and Brian Swetland — are known for their work with embedded systems. The Verge, among other sites, has made a few logical deductions about the possible embedded systems focus for Fuchsia: “Looking into Fuchsia's code points gives us a few clues. For example, the OS is built on Magenta, a “medium-sized microkernel” that is itself based on a project called LittleKernel, which is designed to be used in embedded systems,” the site reports.

    The GitHub postings that confirm that Fuchsia is based on Magenta are particularly notable because Magenta has had applications in the embedded systems space. Here are some direct quotes: "Magenta is a new kernel that powers the Fuchsia OS. Magenta is composed of a microkernel as well as a small set of userspace services, drivers, and libraries necessary for the system to boot, talk to hardware, load userspace processes and run them, etc. Fuchsia builds a much larger OS on top of this foundation."

  • As Blackberry pulls out of handset business it has some big patent strategy calls to make

Android Leftovers

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How I Use Android: Android Central Editor Emeritus Phil Nickinson

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In the meantime, I was able to convince Phil to step out of his metaphorical kitchen for a few minutes to chat about how he uses Android in his day-to-day life. This is a man who has seen and used practically every Android device over the past several years, after all -- and a fair number of apps and customization tools, to boot.

So what devices does someone with so much knowledge carry around in his own trousers, and how does he make the most of what they have to offer?

Enough with the suspense already. In his own words, this is how Phil Nickinson uses Android.

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Best Android Phones Under 5.7 Inches

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There's no question that Samsung hit a home run with its Galaxy S7 line. We already think the smaller GS7 is the best phone under 5.2 inches, and the larger, curved-screen Galaxy S7 edge is our pick for the best phone under 5.7 inches. Why? It takes everything we love about the smaller phone and makes it bigger — but not too much.

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Android Leftovers

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Sony Xperia X Compact review: Small Android is still good, but not much better

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Sony's Xperia X Compact is basically the newest version of the Z5 Compact that hit the US earlier this year. But just because it's a newer version of the (comparatively) tiny handset doesn't mean it's an upgrade in every way. Sony is pushing the camera sensors in the X Compact and the flagship-level XZ, as well as new features like five-axis image stabilization and HDR photo mode. Sony knows cameras, so we know the shooter in the X Compact will at least be competent. However, it has to be good enough to encourage photography buffs to shell out $499 for this unlocked handset while delivering solid performance across the board as well.

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Alphabet's Plans to Create Android PCs Should Make Microsoft a Little Nervous

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Four years after Microsoft (MSFT) first tried to give the world unified PC/mobile operating systems via the dual fiascoes known as Windows 8 and Windows RT, Alphabet's (GOOGL) Google appears set to take its own stab at the concept. And there are reasons to think the company will see a measure of success.

Citing "two independent and reliable sources," Android Police reports Google plans to launch a notebook in the third quarter of 2017 that will likely be the first new device to showcase Andromeda, a version of Android that will integrate many features associated with Google's Chrome OS PC operating system.

The notebook will reportedly be called the Pixel 3, and carry a $788 price. Its feature set reportedly include a 12.3-inch display, an Intel (INTC) processor, a glass trackpad, a tablet mode and stylus support.

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Android Leftovers

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  • Goodbye QWERTY: BlackBerry stops making hardware

    BlackBerry CEO John Chen has been hinting at this move for almost a year now: today BlackBerry announced it will no longer design hardware. Say goodbye to all the crazy hardware QWERTY devices, ultra-wide phones, and unique slider designs.

    Speaking to investors, BlackBerry CEO John Chen described the move as a "pivot to software," saying, "The company plans to end all internal hardware development and will outsource that function to partners. This allows us to reduce capital requirements and enhance return on invested capital." The "Outsourcing to partners" plan is something we've already seen with the "BlackBerry" DTEK50, which was just a rebranded Alcatel Idol 4.

    Chen is now betting the future of the company on software, saying, "In Q2, we more than doubled our software revenue year over year and delivered the highest gross margin in the company's history. We also completed initial shipments of BlackBerry Radar, an end-to-end asset tracking system, and signed a strategic licensing agreement to drive global growth in our BBM consumer business."

    BlackBerry never effectively responded to the 2007 launch of the iPhone and the resulting transition to modern touchscreen smartphones. BlackBerry took swings with devices like the BlackBerry Storm in 2008, its first touchscreen phone; and the BlackBerry Z10 in 2013, the first BlackBerry phone with an OS designed for touch, but neither caught on. BlackBerry's first viable competitor to the iPhone didn't arrive until it finally switched to Android in 2015 with the BlackBerry Priv. It was the first decent BlackBerry phone in some time, but the high price and subpar hardware led to poor sales.

  • Oracle's 'Gamechanger' Evidence Really Just Evidence Of Oracle Lawyers Failing To Read

    Then on to the main show: Oracle's claim that Google hid the plans to make Android apps work on Chrome OS. Google had revealed to Oracle its "App Runtime for Chrome" (ARC) setup, and it was discussed by Oracle's experts, but at Google I/O, Google revealed new plans for apps to run in Chrome OS that were not using ARC, but rather a brand new setup, which Google internally referred to as ARC++. Oracle argued that Google only revealed to them ARC, but not ARC++ and that was super relevant to the fair use argument, because it showed that Android was replacing more than just the mobile device market for Java. But, here's Oracle's big problem: Google had actually revealed to Oracle the plans for ARC++. It appears that Oracle's lawyers just missed that fact. Ouch.

  • Understanding Android's balance between openness and security

    At the 2016 Structure Security conference, Google's Adrian Ludwig talked about the balance between keeping Android as open as possible, while also keeping it secure.

  • Google's Nougat Android update hits the sweet spot: Software 'isn't flashy, but still pretty handy'

    Nougat, Google's latest update of its Android smartphone software, isn't particularly flashy; you might not even notice what's different about it at first.

    But it offers a number of practical time-saving features, plus a few that could save money — and perhaps even your life.

    Nougat is starting to appear on phones, including new ones expected from Google next week.

  • How to change the home screen launcher on Android
  • Andromeda: Chrome OS and Android will merge
  • Sale of Kodi 'fully-loaded' streaming boxes faces legal test
  • Android boxes: Middlesbrough man to be first to be prosecuted for selling streaming kits

Expandable, outdoor IoT gateway runs Android on i.MX6

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VIA’s “Artigo A830” IoT gateway runs Android on an i.MX6 DualLite SoC and offers HDMI, GbE, microSD, numerous serial and USB ports, plus -20 to 60° operation.

As the name suggests, the VIA Technologies Artigo A830 Streetwise IoT Platform is designed for outdoor Internet of Things gateway applications. These are said to include smart lockers, vending machines, information kiosks, and signage devices that run “intensive multimedia shopping, entertainment, and navigation applications.” The outdoors focus is supported with an extended -20 to 60°C operating range, as well as surge and ESD protection for surviving challenges such as a nearby lightning strike.

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More in Tux Machines

Linux on Servers

  • The Point Of Docker Is More Than Containers
    Spending time with Docker during Cloud Field Day about a month ago opened my eyes to the larger ecosystem that Docker is building, and that others are building around it. There is so much more to Docker than just the idea of immutable containers. For a start, Docker made using containers easy. That’s no small feat for a tricky piece of technical infrastructure. Making it easy, and specifically easy for developers, to use removed a lot of friction that was no small contributor to the pain of other, earlier methods. It gave developers are really simple way to create a fully functional development environment, isolated from all other dependencies, with which to work.
  • What are the Top NFV Risks for Carriers?
    What are the risks of network functions virtualization (NFV)? As with any emerging technology, moving fast or picking the wrong components can do more harm than good. Let’s spend some time breaking down the NFV risks in building a virtual network. I have spent the few months gathering feedback from various service providers to get their view on whether NFV and its cousin software-defined networking (SDN) are ready for prime time. Even though many service providers expressed optimism that NFV technology is moving toward maturity, there are definitely cautionary tales on what to look out for. This article serves as an introduction to the challenges of NFV component selection – later articles will refer in more detail to the challenges in selecting NFV hardware and software components such as OpenStack and Open vSwitch.
  • “DevOps is a management problem”
    Improving your own organization’s performance – from where they are now to performance levels equal to the industry leaders – seems like a very long and difficult road. What is missing in most organizations? We talked to Damon Edwards, co-founder and managing partner of DTO Solutions and DevOpsCon speaker, about the challenges that accompany DevOps and how a repeatable system that empowers teams to find and fix their own problems looks like.
  • Manage disk image files wisely in the face of DevOps sprawl
    A disk image is simply a file, but that seemingly innocuous file contains a complete structure that represents applications, storage volumes and even entire disk drives.
  • TNS Guide to Serverless Technologies: The Best Frameworks, Platforms and Tools
    Even if you don’t need the servers themselves, serverless technologies could still require plenty of supporting software. Frameworks are needed to codify best practices, so that everyone is not out to reinvent the wheel, especially when it comes to interfacing with various languages such as Go, JavaScript and Python. And platforms are needed to help people avoid spending too much time on configuring the underlying infrastructure, perhaps by handing the work off to a service provider. Just in time for the Serverless conference in London, this post highlights some of the most widely used frameworks and platforms, as well as other supporting tools, that make successful serverless-based workloads happen.

today's leftovers

  • Why Is The Penguin Tux Official Mascot of Linux? Because Torvalds Had Penguinitis!
    The official mascot of the Linux kernel developed by Linus Torvalds is a penguin named Tux. You might have thought about the probable reasons why a penguin has been used as the face of the Linux kernel. Some people believe that Torvalds was bitten by a penguin that’s why he chose one to represent his kernel.
  • SafeEyes – An Useful Linux Utility That Prevents Eye Strain
    Working in Computer for long hours is pain, and it will definitely affect your eyes. You must take some breaks for your eyes at regular intervals. There are numerous utilities available out there to remind you to take breaks. The one we are going to discuss now is SafeEyes. It is a free and open Source Linux alternative for EyeLeo, a MS Windows-only app. As the name suggests, SafeEyes will protect you from Eye Strain by reminding or forcing you to take breaks after a particular period of time. During the break, it will suggest you some simple exercises like walking for a while, rolling your eyes etc., to relax yourself. If you are a hardcore user who work on computers for long hours, I recommended you to use SafeEyes in your system.
  • Awwh, This Linux Wallpaper Is Adorable
    I pimped some Fedora community wallpapers yesterday, there was that (rather gorgeous) Ubuntu Timeline wallpaper a few weeks back, and the steam from hype-train that brought the “new” Ubuntu default wallpaper still lingers in the air a bit. So — honestly — I wanted so bad not to write about yet another wallpaper.
  • IBM DB2 database gets ‘significant advances’ across Windows, Linux and z/ OSs
    IBM put ‘significant advances’ into its database software DB2, helping companies lower their operating costs while bringing together transactions and analytics in the same database to increase the speed of real-time data analysis. The new DB2 will incorporate hybrid transactional analytical processing (HTAP) available for Linux, Unix, Windows, and z/OS in December
  • Spotify for Linux – In the friendzone
    Spotify is arguably the most popular music streaming service out there. Apologies to any diehard fanboys who may have been offended by this statement. With 100 million users and tight social media integration, it sure plays in the big league. You can also go premium and this will render your interface ad-free and fidelity-high. But what about Linux? As it turns out, Linux has never been high on the list of priorities for the Spotify team, and at some point, the support was discontinued, then it was revived recently, which prompted me to give it a try. Seeking originality and uniqueness in my work, I opted for Fedora, only to learn that only builds for Debian-based distributions are available. In other words, Ubuntu and friends. Very similar to my experience with Sayonara. Anyhow, let’s see what gives.
  • Benefits Of Using Lightweight Linux Distributions
    There are quite a few lightweight linux distributions around but why should you care especially when most of our PCs that are on the market boast some very fast multi-core processors, large volumes of RAM and very fast Solid State Drives. Sure they can bring new life to old machines but there are many other reasons why they could be awesome for you.Let me give you a few reasons you would so much benefit from going with a Lightweight Linux distribution.
  • Alpine Linux 3.4.5 Released with Linux Kernel 4.4.27 LTS, Latest Security Fixes
    A new maintenance update of the server-oriented Alpine Linux 3.4 operating system has been released, bringing a new Linux kernel version from the long-term supported 4.4 series and the latest security patches. According to the release notes, Alpine Linux 3.4.5 is now available as the most up-to-date version of the GNU/Linux distribution based on musl libc and BusyBox, it's powered by the Linux 4.4.27 LTS kernel, which was fully patched against the "Dirty COW" vulnerability, and includes numerous updated components and applications.
  • Upgrade OpenSUSE Leap to OpenSUSE Tumbleweed Rolling Release
  • ArchBang – Best Arch based distro for old or low-end hardware with high performance and low resource utilization
    Arch Linux is very unique, compare with other Linux distributions because it doesn’t comes with live ISO & Desktop Environment. Arch gives you the full freedom to customize the installation as you wish, When you boot up, you’ll be end up with a terminal and most of the people panic here because they don’t want to build from scratch. There are many, Actively developed Arch derived Linux distributions are available with pre-installed Desktop environment. I would advise you to go with any one distribution as you wish.
  • Red Hat Stock Sees Short Interest Make 21% Move
  • New Video Shows Changes Headed to Unity 8
    A new YouTube video claims to show an ‘quick overview of what’s to come to Unity 8’ in a future update. Uploaded by Kugi Javacookies (not sure if that’s his real name), the clip is described as offering a “quick overview of what’s to come soon to Unity 8. Since the silo has now been signed-off by QA, so it will probably land really soon.” Kugi adds that he finds it “awesome to actually follow projects even up to the small details. Codes in launchpad, actual projects in bileto and queued silos for QA testing in Trello. Really cool! :D”.
  • [Bodhi Linux] Modules and Themes in 4.0.0 Repos
    We will be stamping the 4.0.0 release as stable fairly soon and one the last pieces of that puzzle is getting all the “extras” for moksha into the repos. Users can now find the following modules and themes in the Bodhi 4.0.0 main repository for usage / testing:
  • Congatec’s first Apollo Lake COMs include SMARC 2.0 model
    Congatec announced three Linux-friendly COMs based on Intel’s new Atom E3900 SoC: a Qseven, a COM Express Compact, and one of the first SMARC 2.0 modules. Congatec is one of the first vendors to announce a major product lineup based on Intel’s newly announced, 14nm-fabricated Atom E3900 “Apollo Lake” SoCs. In addition to the Qseven form-factor Conga-QA5 and the COM Express Compact Type 6 CongaTCA5 modules, the company unveiled the Conga-SA5, which is billed as Congatec’s first SMARC 2.0 module. In fact, the Conga-SA5 appears to be the company’s first SMARC COM ever, and one of the first SMARC 2.0 models to be fully announced. (See more on SMARC 2.0 below.)
  • Intel launches 14nm Atom E3900 and spins an automotive version
    The Linux-ready Atom E3900 series, which was formally announced at the IoT Solutions World Congress in Barcelona on the same day as the start of ARM TechCon in Silicon Valley, has already started rolling out to some 30 OEM customers, some of which have already announced products (see below). The first Apollo Lake based products will ship 2Q 2017, says Intel.

today's howtos

DevOps Handbook and Course