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Development

Programming: Graphics, Interview and Security Patches

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Development
  • Patches Prep The Merging Of AMDKFD + AMDGPU Linux Drivers

    The plans talked about in early July for merging the AMDKFD driver into the AMDGPU DRM driver are moving ahead and out today are the initial patches working towards this merger.

    AMDKFD is the graphics vendor's "Kernel Fusion Driver" with the name originating from the Fusion days and is the kernel bits needed for HSA/compute on Radeon graphics hardware.

  • Codeplay Outs SYCL-Based ComputeCpp 1.0, Running Parallel C++ Code On Multiple Platforms

    Codeplay, the company behind tools like clspv for running OpenCL C code on Vulkan, today released ComputeCpp 1.0.

    ComputeCpp 1.0 is built upon the Khronos Group's SYCL 1.2.1 standard and is designed to write standard C++ code for heterogeneous systems that in turn can run across processors and accelerators from a variety of vendors -- in effect, everywhere.

  • New podcast interview

     

    Apparently August 2018 is Shamelessly Shill Yourself Month. I appeared on the IT in the D podcast last week. A fun time was had by all–well, at least by me. And that’s the important thing, right? We talked about my books, decades of IT, SSH, ed, and general nerdery.

  • Security updates for Friday

Linux-driven Zynq UltraScale+ embedded vision kit taps 4K-ready EV SoC model

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Development
Linux
Hardware

Avnet’s “UltraZed-EV Starter Kit” for embedded vision features an UltraZed-EV module with a Zynq UltraScale+ MPSoC EV. The EV variant adds a 4K-ready H.264/H.265 codec and a more powerful FPGA to the quad -A53 SoC.

Avnet has followed up on its Linux-driven UltraZed-EG SOM compute module with a new UltraZed-EV SOM version that moves to Xilinx’s embedded vision savvy EV version of the Zynq UltraScale+ MPSoC. The UltraZed-EV SOM is now available on a $1,595, sandwich-style carrier called the UltraZed-EV Starter Kit.

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Programming: CI-Admin, Rust, CafeOBJ and Digest

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Development
  • Introducing CI-Admin

    A major focus of recent developments in Firefox CI has been putting control of the CI process in the hands of the engineers working on the project. For the most part, that means putting configuration in the source tree. However, some kinds of configuration don’t fit well in the tree. Notably, configuration of the trees themselves must reside somewhere else.

  • This Week in Rust 248

    This week's crate is wasm-bindgen-futures, a crate to make ECMAScript futures and Rust futures interoperate. Thanks to Vikrant for the suggestion!

  • CafeOBJ 1.5.8 released

    Some time ago we released CafeOBJ 1.5.8 with some new features and bugfixes for the inductive theorem prover CITP. We are still struggling with SBCL builds on Windows, which suddendly started to produce corrupt images, something that doesn’t happen on Linux or Mac.

  • digest 0.6.16

    digest version 0.6.16 arrived on CRAN earlier today, and was just prepared for Debian as well.

    digest creates hash digests of arbitrary R objects (using the 'md5', 'sha-1', 'sha-256', 'sha-512', 'crc32', 'xxhash32', 'xxhash64' and 'murmur32' algorithms) permitting easy comparison of R language objects.

Python wriggles onward without its head

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Development

At the third annual PyBay Conference in San Francisco over the weekend, Python aficionados gathered to learn new tricks and touch base with old friends.

Only a month earlier, Python creator Guido van Rossum said he would step down as BDFL – benevolent dictator for life – following a draining debate over the addition of a new way to assign variables within an expression (PEP 572).

But if any bitterness about the proposal politics lingered, it wasn't evident among attendees.

Raymond Hettinger, a Python core developer, consultant and speaker, told The Register that the retirement of Python creator Guido van Rossum hasn't really changed things.

"It has not changed the tenor of development yet," he said. "Essentially, [Guido] presented us with a challenge for self-government. And at this point we don't have any active challenges or something controversial to resolve."

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Git 2.19 on the Way

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Development
  • Git v2.19.0-rc0 [Ed: Microsoft spends billions of imaginary money trying to extinguish it and shore up its proprietary software]

    An early preview release Git v2.19.0-rc0 is now available for testing at the usual places. It is comprised of 707 non-merge commits since v2.18.0, contributed by 60 people, 14 of which are new faces.

  • Git 2.19 Begins Its Release Dance, RC0 Is Up For Testing

    Junio Hamano issued the first release candidate on Monday of the upcoming Git 2.19 distributed revision control system update.

    Git 2.19-RC0 comes with hundreds of changes over Git 2.18. There isn't any select standout features of this new release but a lot of continued code churn all over the place with a ton of smaller additions.

Security Things in Linux 4.18 and Embrace of Newer GCC

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Development
GNU
Linux
Security
  • security things in Linux v4.18

    One of the many ways C can be dangerous to use is that it lacks strong primitives to deal with arithmetic overflow. A developer can’t just wrap a series of calculations in a try/catch block to trap any calculations that might overflow (or underflow). Instead, C will happily wrap values back around, causing all kinds of flaws. Some time ago GCC added a set of single-operation helpers that will efficiently detect overflow, so Rasmus Villemoes suggested implementing these (with fallbacks) in the kernel. While it still requires explicit use by developers, it’s much more fool-proof than doing open-coded type-sensitive bounds checking before every calculation. As a first-use of these routines, Matthew Wilcox created wrappers for common size calculations, mainly for use during memory allocations.

  • Linux 4.19 Raises The GCC Minimum Version Required To Build The Kernel

    Officially the Linux kernel listed GCC 3.2 as the minimum version of the GNU compiler needed. However, with Linux 4.19 that is being raised to GCC 4.6.

    Various architectures on older GCC4 releases had already been failing to cleanly compile the Linux kernel so with Linux 4.19 that minimum version supported is being set at GCC 4.6.

  • Linux 4.19 Kernel Now Requires GCC 4.6 to Build, Due to Compiling Failures on Older Architecture

    For Linux developers working on the kernel, the to-be-released Linux 4.19 kernel raises the GCC minimum version required for kernel building. The official Linux kernel has listed GCC 3.2 as the minimum version of the compiler required for kernel building, but Linux kernel 4.19 is raising that to GCC 4.6.

    This is because various architectures on older GCC4 releases have been failing to cleanly compile the Linux kernel, hence why GCC 4.6 is being set as the minimum. The kernel will also explicitly check for GCC 4.6.0 or newer and if not found, the compiler will error out.

    This is also beneficial for the kernel code, as the kernel devs were able to strip out several dozen lines of code for older GCC workarounds that were aimed at compiler bugs and behavioral differences in the older compiler releases.

KDevelop 5.2.4 released

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Development
KDE

As the last stabilization and bugfix release in the 5.2 series, we today make KDevelop 5.2.4 available for download. This release contains a few bug fixes and a bit of polishing, as well as translation updates, and should be a very simple transition for anyone using 5.2.x currently.

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Programming: FOAAS, Jenkins 2, LLVM 6/7 and New Patches

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Development
  • rfoaas 2.0.0: Updated and extended

    FOAAS upstream recently went to release 2.0.0, so here we are catching up bringing you all the new accessors from FOAAS 2.0.0: bag(), equity(), fts(), ing(), particular(), ridiculous(), and shit(). We also added off_with() which was missing previously. Documentation and tests were updated. The screenshot shows an example of the new functions.

  • Introduction to writing pipelines-as-code and implementing DevOps with Jenkins 2

    One of the key ideas of DevOps is infrastructure-as-code—having the infrastructure for your delivery/deployment pipeline expressed in code—just as the products that flow it.

  • Intel's Beignet OpenCL Driver Updated To Work With LLVM 6/7

    Intel stopped developing their Beignet open-source Linux OpenCL driver in February to concentrate all efforts now around their new Intel OpenCL NEO platform. But commits landed today with a few improvements for those still using Beignet.

    Independent contributor to the Beignet OpenCL stack Rebecca Palmer submitted a number of patches recently that were added to mainline Beignet, the first commits to this OpenCL library since early February.

  • Security updates for Monday

Programming: Perl, Python, CRAN

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Development
  • Garbage collection in Perl 6

    In the first article in this series on migrating Perl 5 code to Perl 6, we looked into some of the issues you might encounter when porting your code. In this second article, we’ll get into how garbage collection differs in Perl 6.

    There is no timely destruction of objects in Perl 6. This revelation usually comes as quite a shock to people used to the semantics of object destruction in Perl 5. But worry not, there are other ways in Perl 6 to get the same behavior, albeit requiring a little more thought by the developer. Let’s first examine a little background on the situation in Perl 5.

  • An introduction to the Django Python web app framework

    In the first three articles of this four-part series comparing different Python web frameworks, we covered the Pyramid, Flask, and Tornado web frameworks. We've built the same app three times and have finally made our way to Django. Django is, by and large, the major web framework for Python developers these days and it's not too hard to see why. It excels in hiding a lot of the configuration logic and letting you focus on being able to build big, quickly.

    That said, when it comes to small projects, like our To-Do List app, Django can be a bit like bringing a firehose to a water gun fight. Let's see how it all comes together.

  • Dirk Eddelbuettel: RcppArmadillo 0.9.100.5.0

    A new RcppArmadillo release 0.9.100.5.0, based on the new Armadillo release 9.100.5 from earlier today, is now on CRAN and in Debian.

    It once again follows our (and Conrad's) bi-monthly release schedule. Conrad started with a new 9.100.* series a few days ago. I ran reverse-depends checks and found an issue which he promptly addressed; CRAN found another which he also very promptly addressed. It remains a true pleasure to work with such experienced professionals as Conrad (with whom I finally had a beer around the recent useR! in his home town) and of course the CRAN team whose superb package repository truly is the bedrock of the R community.

Programming: Go, Agile, and Literature

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Development
  • File Indexing In Golang

    I have been working on a pet project to write a File Indexer, which is a utility that helps me to search a directory for a given word or phrase.

    The motivation behind to build this utility was so that we could search the chat log files for dgplug. We have a lot of online classes and guest session and at time we just remember the name or a phrase used in the class, backtracking the files using these are not possible as of now. I thought I will give stab at this problem and since I am trying to learn golang I implemented my solution in it. I implemented this solution over a span of two weeks where I spent time to upskill on certain aspects and also to come up with a clean solution.

  • How Agile helps non-technical teams get things done

    What are the best ways for governments to improve effectiveness and efficiency? At San Jose City Hall, we’re getting traction with an unconventional approach: agile for non-technical teams. Public servants who do everything from emergency management to parks programs are finding that Agile methods help them with that most basic of challenges: Getting things done amid frequent interruptions and evolving priorities.

    Last September, I proclaimed, "Scrum is the best thing that’s happened to our government team." Our innovation team of five had discovered that planning and delivering work in small increments enables us to stay focused, aligned, and continuously improving. We didn’t yet know if our experience would be replicable by other teams in our organization. We offered Agile training for 10 colleagues to see what would happen.

    Nine months later, 12 teams and more than 100 staff members throughout our organization are using Agile methods to organize their work. Notably, the spread of Agile among city teams has been largely organic, not driven by top-down mandates.

  • Top Linux developers' recommended programming books

    Without question, Linux was created by brilliant programmers who employed good computer science knowledge. Let the Linux programmers whose names you know share the books that got them started and the technology references they recommend for today's developers. How many of them have you read?

    [...]

    Linux was developed in the 1990s, as were other fundamental open source applications. As a result, the tools and languages the developers used reflected the times, which meant a lot of C programming language. While C is no longer as popular, for many established developers it was their first serious language, which is reflected in their choice of influential books.

    “You shouldn't start programming with the languages I started with or the way I did,” says Torvalds. He started with BASIC, moved on to machine code (“not even assembly language, actual ‘just numbers’ machine code,” he explains), then assembly language and C.

    “None of those languages are what anybody should begin with anymore,” Torvalds says. “Some of them make no sense at all today (BASIC and machine code). And while C is still a major language, I don't think you should begin with it.”

    It's not that he dislikes C. After all, Linux is written in GNU C. "I still think C is a great language with a pretty simple syntax and is very good for many things,” he says. But the effort to get started with it is much too high for it to be a good beginner language by today's standards. “I suspect you'd just get frustrated. Going from your first ‘Hello World’ program to something you might actually use is just too big of a step."

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More in Tux Machines

Graphics: NVIDIA, ATI RAGE and Phoronix Test Suite a Decade Later

  • New LTS Kernel 4.19 and NVidia Patch
    Under 24h after Linux Kernel 4.19 LTS is released by Greg, Patrick decided to bump the kernel used in -current to the latest LTS release. This new major version brings tons of new and interesting features, as written in Kernel Newbies. [...] I'm pretty sure it will showed up soon enough as KDE 5 is getting more stable and polished. It has been tested by Eric (and some other) for some time and it's proven to be solid.
  • A 2018 Autumn Linux Driver Update For The ATI RAGE 128 Series
    The open-source display driver for supporting these graphics cards where 32MB of SDRAM was suitable, 250 nm fabrication was standard, and core clocks around 100MHz were competitive is still being maintained... Two decades after the release of the ATI RAGE series, the open-source Linux driver continues seeing some activity and in fact a new driver release. The lone independent driver contributor ushering along the RAGE driver (xf86-video-r128) is Kevin Brace who started working on the VIA OpenChrome open-source driver in recent years and for the past number of months recently shifted focus to the classic RAGE driver. He released the xf86-video-r128 6.12.0 driver today to address two build failures. Besides addressing build problems, he also began writing some of the XAA/EXA 2D acceleration code. He did note of the changes to the 2D acceleration code paths, "It is always possible that I can mess up the code, but it appears that the code is working correctly."
  • OpenBenchmarking.org Serves Up Its 35 Millionth Test Profile/Suite Benchmark Download
    Just a little more than one month after crossing 34 million downloads, the 35,000,000 milestone was achieved -- continuing the trend that's been going on for the past number of quarters. OpenBenchmarking.org serves test profiles/suites separate from the Phoronix Test Suite package itself to allow new tests to be easily introduced without having to upgrade the PTS client itself, update existing tests with version controls, etc. OpenBenchmarking.org is also what allows users to upload their own test results publicly, obtain various hardware/software statistics, and much more.

Fedora Toolbox ready for testing!

As many of you know we kicked of a ambitious goal to revamp the Linux desktop when we launched Fedora Workstation 4 years. We wanted to remove many of the barriers to adoption of Linux as a desktop and make it a better operating system for all, especially for developers. To that effect we have been pushing a long range of initiatives over the last 4 years ago, ranging from providing a better input stack through libinput, a better display system through Wayland, a better audio and video subsystem through PipeWire, a better way of doing application packaging and dependency handling through Flatpak, a better application installation history through GNOME Software, actual firmware handling for Linux through Linux Vendor Firmware Service, better manageability through Fleet Commander, and Project Silverblue for reliable OS updates. We also had a lot of efforts done to improve general hardware handling, be that work on glvnd and friends for dealing with NVidia driver, the Bolt project for handling Thunderbolt devices better, HiDPI support in the desktop, better touch support in the desktop, improved laptop battery life, and ongoing work to improve state of fingerprint readers under Linux and to provide a flicker free boot experience. Read more

Celebrating 15 Years of the Xen Project and Our Future

In the 1990s, Xen was a part of a research project to build a public computing infrastructure on the Internet led by Ian Pratt and Keir Fraser at The University of Cambridge Computer Laboratory. The Xen Project is now one of the most popular open source hypervisors and amasses more than 10 million users, and this October marks our 15th anniversary. From its beginnings, Xen technology focused on building a modular and flexible architecture, a high degree of customizability, and security. This security mindset from the outset led to inclusion of non-core security technologies, which eventually allowed the Xen Project to excel outside of the data center and be a trusted source for security and embedded vendors (ex. Qubes, Bromium, Bitdefender, Star Labs, Zentific, Dornerworks, Bosch, BAE systems), and also a leading hypervisor contender for the automotive space. As the Xen Project looks to a future of virtualization everywhere, we reflect back on some of our major achievements over the last 15 years. To celebrate, we’ve created an infographic that captures some of our key milestones — share it on social. A few community members also weighed in on some of their favorite Xen Project moments and what’s to come: Read more

Latest Firefox Rolls Out Enhanced Tracking Protection

At Firefox, we’re always looking to build features that are true to the Mozillia mission of giving people control over their data and privacy whenever they go online. We recently announced our approach to Anti-tracking where we discussed three key feature areas we’re focusing on to help people feel safe while they’re on the web. With today’s release, we’re making progress against “removing cross-site tracking” with what we’re calling Enhanced Tracking Protection. Read more