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Development

Development News/Tools

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Development
  • NVIDIA Makes Huge Code Contribution To Qt, New Qt 3D Studio

    The Qt Company today announced Qt 3D Studio, a new 3D UI authoring system, thanks to NVIDIA providing Qt with hundreds of thousands of lines of source code making up this application.

  • Cavium ThunderX Support Added To LLVM

    Cavium's ThunderX ARM 64-bit processors are now formally supported by the LLVM compiler stack.

  • How copying an int made my code 11 times faster

    Recently, after refactoring some Rust code, I noticed that it had suddenly become four times slower. However, the strange part is that I didn’t even touch the part of the code that became slower. Furthermore, it was still slower after commenting out the changes. Curious, I decided to investigate further.

    The first step was to use git diff to display all changes since the previous commit, which was normal speed. Then I started removing them one by one, no matter how inconsequential, and testing to see if it was still slow after the change.

    [...]

    Adding the print statement causes the code to go from 0.16 seconds to 1.7 seconds, an 11x slowdown (in release mode). Then, I posted it in the rustc IRC channel, where eddyb and bluss suggested a workaround and explained what was going on.

    The fix was to the change the print line to the following, which does indeed fix the slowdown.

Development News

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Development
  • DWARF Version 5 Standard Released

    The DWARF Debugging Information Format Standards Committee is pleased to announce the availability of Version 5 of the DWARF Debugging Format Standard. The DWARF Debugging Format is used to communicate debugging information between a compiler and debugger to make it easier for programmers to develop, test, and debug programs.

    DWARF is used by a wide range of compilers and debuggers, both proprietary and open source, to support debugging of Ada, C, C++, Cobol, FORTRAN, Java, and other programming languages. DWARF V5 adds support for new languages like Rust, Swift, Ocaml, Go, and Haskell, as well as support for new features in older languages. DWARF can be used with a wide range of processor architectures, such as x86, ARM, PowerPC, from 8-bit to 64-bit.

  • Things that won't change in Python

    A lengthy and strongly opinionated post about Python features to the python-ideas mailing list garnered various responses there, from some agreement to strong disagreement to calling it "trolling", but it may also lead the Python community to better define what Python is. Trolling seems a somewhat unfair characterization, but Simon Lovell's "Python Reviewed" post did call out some of the fundamental attributes of the language and made some value judgments that were seen as either coming from ignorance of the language or simply as opinions that were stated as facts in a brusque way. The thread eventually led to the creation of a document meant to help head off this kind of thread in the future.

  • modulemd 1.1.0

    This is a little belated announcement but let it be known that I released a new version of the module metadata library, modulemd-1.1.0, earlier this week!

  • RPushbullet 0.3.1
  • A rift in the NTP world

    The failure of the Network Time Protocol (NTP) project could be catastrophic. However, what few have noticed is that the attempts to prevent that catastrophe may have created entirely new challenges.

Development News:/Trools

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Development
  • Builder’s Build Pipeline

    One of the core features of Builder is, well, building. So we need to provide the best experience we can. That means we need wide support for build systems and languages. How we get from source code to a product can vary in a multitude of ways.

  • littler 0.3.2

    The third release of littler as a CRAN package is now available, following in the now more than ten-year history as a package started by Jeff in the summer of 2006, and joined by me a few weeks later.

  • What's coming in Weblate 2.12

    Weblate should be released by end of February, so it's now pretty much clear what will be there. So let's look at some of the upcoming features.

    There were many improvements in search related features. They got performance improvements (this is especially noticeable on site wide search). Additionally you can search for strings within translation project. On related topic, search and replace is now available for component or project wide operations, what can help you in case of massive renaming in your translations.

Go 1.8 Release Notes

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Development
Google
  • Go 1.8 Release Notes

    The latest Go release, version 1.8, arrives six months after Go 1.7. Most of its changes are in the implementation of the toolchain, runtime, and libraries. There are two minor changes to the language specification. As always, the release maintains the Go 1 promise of compatibility. We expect almost all Go programs to continue to compile and run as before.

  • Go 1.8 Released With Various Performance Improvements

    Google today announced the release of the Go 1.8 programming language implementation that is coming with six months worth of features and changes.

    Go 1.8 has a few new 64-bit x86 instructions supported, Go 1.8 now uses its new compiler back-end on all architectures (with Go 1.7 their new compiler back-end was just used on 64-bit x86) and that should yield a 20~30% performance improvement for 32-bit ARM systems. But even x86 64-bit systems should see 0~10% performance improvements with Go 1.8.

Development News

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Development
  • Using Scripting Languages in IoT: Challenges and Approaches

    Scripting languages (aka Very High-Level Languages or VHLLs), such as Python, PHP, and JavaScript are commonly used in desktop, server, and web development. And, their powerful built-in functionality lets you develop small useful applications with little time and effort, says Paul Sokolovsky, IoT engineer at Linaro. However, using VHLLs for deeply embedded development is a relatively recent twist in IoT.

  • Things Every Hacker Once Knew

    One fine day in January 2017 I was reminded of something I had half-noticed a few times over the previous decade. That is, younger hackers don’t know the bit structure of ASCII and the meaning of the odder control characters in it.

    This is knowledge every fledgling hacker used to absorb through their pores. It’s nobody’s fault this changed; the obsolescence of hardware terminals and the near-obsolescence of the RS-232 protocol is what did it. Tools generate culture; sometimes, when a tool becomes obsolete, a bit of cultural commonality quietly evaporates. It can be difficult to notice that this has happened.

    This document is a collection of facts about ASCII and related technologies, notably hardware serial terminals and RS-232 and modems. This is lore that was at one time near-universal and is no longer. It’s not likely to be directly useful today - until you trip over some piece of still-functioning technology where it’s relevant (like a GPS puck), or it makes sense of some old-fart war story. Even so, it’s good to know anyway, for cultural-literacy reasons.

  • Futhark: A Pure, Functional Language For GPU Computing

    Futhark was presented earlier this month at FOSDEM as a "purely functional array language" with its compiler able to "efficiently generate high-performance GPU code."

    Futhark is a high-level, parallel-focused programming language that aims to compete with the performance of hand-written code targeting particular GPUs. Futhark hopes to be more portable across GPUs while tapping into the full GPU potential if you were writing finely-tuned code targeting a particular graphics processor. Futhark's compiler currently translates this code into OpenCL for GPU execution, but I'm told by one of the attendees at FOSDEM for this event, Futhark is also working on an approach to turn their code into pure-OpenGL for execution on GPUs without OpenCL, CUDA, or Vulkan.

Vala Development

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Development
GNOME
  • Vala is not a Programming Language

    Vala provides you a way to write C/GObject/GInterface code using a different syntax. Vala doesn’t require to develop a “core library” in order to provide its features. Its “compiler” is not a compiler, is a C code generator.

    Vala can’t be compared with Rust, Go, Python, Java or C#, all of them provide their own “core library” in order to provide most of their features, allows you to create modules (like a library) to extend the language for their users consume. Their core generally is written in C, for very basic features, but almost in the language itself.

  • Vala 1.0?

    Yes is time to consider a Vala 1.0 release. Vala 0.34 code generator and bindings support LTS versions of GTK+ 3.22 and GLib 2.50. Next stable version of GTK+ will be 4.0 and GLib 2.x, but they have to traverse through 3.9x versions and any GLib 2.x on the way. Reaching that point we can consider Vala 2.0 release.

GNOME/GTK News

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Development
GNOME
  • GTK+ Implements Window Focus Tracking and Window Properties for Ubuntu's Mir

    The GTK+ development team just released a few moments ago a new stable and development release of the widely-used GTK+ open-source toolkit for GNOME and GNOME-based desktop environments and related apps.

    GTK+ 3.22.8 is now the most stable and advanced build of the toolkit, and will soon be available for most GNU/Linux distributions that use it. While it's only a small maintenance update, it adds a few interesting improvements for Ubuntu's Mir display server, such as window focus tracking, window properties, and modal hint support.

  • On Vala

    Of course, and with reason, I’ve been called out on this by various people. Luckily, it was on Twitter, so we haven’t seen articles on Slashdot and Phoronix and LWN with headlines like “GNOME developer says Vala is dead and will be removed from all servers for all eternity and you all suck”. At least, I’ve only seen a bunch of comments on Reddit about this, but nobody cares about that particular cesspool of humanity.

  • A GNOME Developer's Arguments On Vala Being A "Dead" Language

    Longtime GNOME developer Emmanuele Bassi has pleaded his case that Vala is a "dead" language and that new applications/developers should look at alternatives or first work on improving this GNOME-centered language.

    There's previously been efforts to use more Rust code in GNOME than C/Vala and developers expressing their disappointment/frustrations in Vala. Emmanuele Bassi recently tweeted, "PSA: if you want to write a new @gnome application, don't use Vala; if you're already using it, consider porting to a non-dead language."

Development News: RcppTOML, Rust, NetSurf

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Development
  • RcppTOML 0.1.1

    Following up on the somewhat important RcppTOML 0.1.0 releaseas which brought RcppTOML to Windows, we have a first minor update 0.1.1. Two things changed: once again updated upstream code from Chase Geigle's cpptoml which now supports Date types too, and we added the ability to parse TOML from strings as opposed to only from files.

  • The Next Big Blue-Collar Job Is Coding

    When I ask people to picture a coder, they usually imagine someone like Mark Zuckerberg: a hoodied college dropout who builds an app in a feverish 72-hour programming jag—with the goal of getting insanely rich and, as they say, “changing the world.”

  • Looking into what Rust can do that other languages can't ... or can they
  • The minority yields to the majority!

    As previously mentioned I contribute to the NetSurf project and the browser natively supports numerous toolkits for numerous platforms. This produces many challenges in development to obtain the benefits of a more diverse user base. As part of the recent NetSurf developer weekend we took the opportunity to review all the frontends to make a decision on their future sustainability.

Programming and Security News

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Development
Security
  • RSPIRV: Google's Rust Implementation Of SPIR-V

    Google developers have been working on a number of open-source projects in the Vulkan space and one of their latest is SPIR-V processing with Rust.

    RSPIRV is another project under the Google umbrella on GitHub. RSPIRV is a Rust implementation of SPIR-V module processing functionalities. SPIR-V, of course, being the intermediate representation/language used by Vulkan as well as OpenCL 2.1+ and can also be used in OpenGL.

  • Optimize PHP with finely tuned IT resources and settings

    More than 90% of PHP-based websites still use PHP version 5. Of those websites, less than one quarter run the latest supported version, PHP 5.6. Despite the release of PHP 7 in December 2015, which has been documented and benchmarked as up to two times faster than PHP 5.6, the adoption rate is only around 3% among websites that use the language. The first step -- before optimizing PHP using the following tips -- is to upgrade to version 7.

  • Node for Java Developers

    The biggest audience for my Node.js workshops, courses and books (especially when I’m teaching live) is Java developers. You see, it used to be that Java was the only language professional software developers/engineers had to know. Not anymore. Node.js as well as other languages like Go, Elixir, Python, Clojure, dictate a polyglot environment in which the best tool for the job is picked.

  • Morocco's First Open Source ERP Uses Java EE 7!
  • Hazelcast's Parallel Streaming Engine Targets Java/Big Data Programmers

    In-memory data grid (IMDG) specialist Hazelcast Inc. yesterday launched a new distributed processing engine for Big Data streams. The open-source, Apache 2-licenced Hazelcast Jet is designed to process data in parallel across nodes, enabling data-intensive applications to operate in near real-time.

  • On new zlib breaking perl
  • anytime 0.2.1
  • Security updates for Friday
  • Capsule8 Launches Linux-Based Container Security Platform

    Cybersecurity startup Capsule8 this week announced that it has raised US$2.5 million to launch the industry's first container-aware, real-time threat protection platform designed to protect legacy and next-generation Linux infrastructures from existing and potential attacks.

    CEO John Viega, CTO Dino Dai Zovi and Chief Scientist Brandon Edwards, all veteran hackers, cofounded the firm. They raised seed funding from Bessemer Venture Partners, as well as individual investors Shandul Shah of Index Ventures and ClearSky's Jay Leek.

Development News:GitLab, Git, and PHP

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Development
  • GitLab Data Loss Incident Prompts a Review of its Restore Processes

    On Tuesday, a GitLab administrator had accidentally erased a directory of live production data during a routine database replication. In the process of restoring from the last backup, taken six hours prior, the company had discovered that none of its five backup routines worked entirely correctly. The incident report, which GitLab posted online, noted that erasure affected issues and merge requests but not the git repositories themselves.

  • Git v2.12.0-rc0
  • Git 2.12.0-rc0 Released With Various Improvements

    Coincidentally on the same day as Microsoft announcing the Git Virtual File-System, upstream Git developers have announced their first release candidate of the upcoming Git 2.12 milestone.

    Git 2.12-rc0 has 441 commits since v2.11 including Cygwin build updates, git p4 updates, GitLFS integration updates, additions to various Git sub-commands, some performance improvements, and a range of fixes and other smaller technical updates.

  • Clear Linux's Latest Performance-Optimizing Effort: Greater PHP Performance

    Developers working on Intel's Clear Linux distribution have taken to performance tuning of their stock PHP packages during their migration from PHP5 to PHP7.

    As we've shown in other Clear Linux benchmarks, this Intel Open-Source Technology Center project aims for delivering maximum out-of-the-box performance via tuning and patches where needed to their Linux kernel, aggressive GCC/Clang compiler defaults, and other steps for trying to deliver the best possible Intel x86_64 Linux performance. With the recent builds of this rolling-release distribution they are optimizing PHP 7.1.1 via PGO (Profile Guided Optimizations).

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More in Tux Machines

Android Leftovers

New/Imminent Releases: Black Lab Linux, Exton|Defender, Mageia

  • Black Lab Linux 8.1 Released
    Today we are pleased to announce the release of Black Lab Linux 8.1. Our first incremental release to the 8.0 series. In this release we have brought all security updates up to Feb 15, 2017 as well as application updates.
  • Exton|Defender Super Rescue System Is Now Based on Fedora 25 and Cinnamon 3.2.8
    GNU/Linux developer Arne Exton is announcing the availability of a new build of his Exton|Defender SRS (Super Rescue System) Live DVD/USB designed for those who want to do various administrative tasks on their PCs. Based on the 64-bit version of the Fedora 25 operating system, Exton|Defender SRS Build 170218 comes with up-to-date tools that let you administrate and repair your operating system after a disaster. It's now powered by the Linux 4.9.9 kernel and uses the gorgeous Cinnamon 3.2.8 desktop environment by default.
  • Mageia 6 Has Been Running Months Behind Schedule, But It's Still Coming
    Samuel Verschelde of the Mandrake/Mandriva-forked Mageia Linux distribution has put out a blog post concerning the state of Mageia 6. The last Mageia 6 test release was in June of last year and their next Mageia 6 "stabilization snapshot" has been repeatedly delayed for months.
  • So where is Mageia 6?
    There is no mystery about it, we are totally off schedule. The last preview we published for Mageia 6 was Stabilization Snapshot 1 in June 2016, and Stabilization Snapshot 2 still hasn’t been published, although we have been saying “soon” for weeks, or even months! So what’s going on? Is Mageia dead? Fortunately not. But it’s good that you worry about it because it shows you like your Linux distribution. We need to communicate about the state of things so that you can stop worrying, so here we are.

5 Signs That Show You’re a Linux Geek

While Linux is certainly very easy to use, there are some activities surrounding it that are seen as more complex than others. While they can be all be avoided easily enough, they do have a certain, geeky appeal. How many of them do you follow? Read more

Top 5 best rising Linux distros in 2017

Linux is built for tinkering and experimentation, which means it’s always morphing and changing. New distros are popping up all the time, because all it takes is a little bit of determination, time and effort to create a custom operating system. Not all of them hit the mark – there are stacks of Linux distros that have seen little to no action, and we’re almost certain that some have been released and never installed by anyone other than their creator. Other alternative distros, though, fare rather better. Look at the success of Linux Mint, which spun off from Ubuntu to become (at times) arguably more popular than its own parent. Indeed, Ubuntu itself grew from Debian, and its niche offshoots (distros like Ubuntu Studio) have seen good movement. If there’s a market out there for your distro, there’s traction to be had. So let’s look at our pick of the five distros moving up swiftly through the ranks as of early 2017. Some of these might become the best Linux distros out there, some might turn out to be awful – but it won’t cost you a penny to try them out. Read more