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Development

Perl turns 30 and its community continues to thrive

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Development

Larry Wall released Perl 1.0 to the comp.sources.misc Usenet newsgroup on December 18, 1987. In the nearly 30 years since then, both the language and the community of enthusiasts that sprung up around it have grown and thrived—and they continue to do so, despite suggestions to the contrary!

Wall's fundamental assertion—there is more than one way to do it—continues to resonate with developers. Perl allows programmers to embody the three chief virtues of a programmer: laziness, impatience, and hubris. Perl was originally designed for utility, not beauty. Perl is a programming language for fixing things, for quick hacks, and for making complicated things possible partly through the power of community. This was a conscious decision on Larry Wall's part: In an interview in 1999, he posed the question, "When's the last time you used duct tape on a duct?"

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Release of GCC 5.5, GDB Conversion to C++

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GNU
  • GCC 5.5 Released

    The GNU Compiler Collection version 5.5 has been released.

    GCC 5.5 is a bug-fix release from the GCC 5 branch containing important fixes for regressions and serious bugs in GCC 5.4 with more than 250 bugs fixed since the previous release.

    This is also the last release from the GCC 5 branch, GCC continues to be maintained on the GCC 6 and GCC 7 branches and the development trunk.

  • GCC 5.5 Released, That's It For GCC5

    Jakub Jelinek of Red Hat today announced the release of GCC 5.5 compiler that also marks the end of the GCC5 series.

  • The State Of GNU's GDB Conversion To C++

    Last year the GNU Debugger's code-base was converted from the C programming language (C90) to now using C++11. At last month's GNU Tools Cauldron was an update on this process.

Programming: Money for GitLab and "Why I still choose Ruby"

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Development
  • GitLab raises $20M Series C round led by GV
  • GitLab raises $20 Million Series C Round Led by GV to Complete DevOps
  • GitLab raises $20 million in funding to create DevOps software, tools
  • Why I still choose Ruby

    So putting the performance aspect of these environments aside we need to look at the syntactic nature of these languages as well as the features and tools they offer for developers. The last is the easiest to tackle as these days most notable languages come with compilers/interpreters, debuggers, task systems, test suites, documentation engines, and much more. This was not always the case though as Ruby was one of the first languages that pioneered builtin package management through rubygems, and integrated dependency solutions via gemspecs, bundler, etc. CPAN and a few other language-specific online repositories existed before, but with Ruby you got integration that was a core part of the runtime environment and community support. Ruby is still known to be on the leading front of integrated and end-to-end solutions.

Programming: RICE, Bugs, and Java

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Development
  • Double Your Development Velocity without Growing Your Team

    The Developer Experience team at SendGrid is a small, but mighty force of two. We attempt to tackle every problem that we can get our hands on. This often means that some items get left behind.  At the outset, we surveyed everything that was going on in our open source libraries and we quickly realized that we needed to find a way to prioritize what we were going to work on. Luckily, our team lives, organizationally, on the Product Management team, and we had just received a gentle nudge and training on the RICE prioritization framework.

    On our company blog, I wrote an article about how employing this framework, using a spreadsheet, helped us double our velocity as a team within the first sprint. Our development velocity doubled because the most impactful things for the time spent are not always the biggest things, but the biggest things tend to attract the most attention due to their size.

  • Review by many eyes does not always prevent buggy code

    Writing code is hard. Writing secure code is harder—much harder. And before you get there, you need to think about design and architecture. When you're writing code to implement security functionality, it's often based on architectures and designs that have been pored over and examined in detail. They may even reflect standards that have gone through worldwide review processes and are generally considered perfect and unbreakable.*

    However good those designs and architectures are, though, there's something about putting things into actual software that's, well, special. With the exception of software proven to be mathematically correct,** being able to write software that accurately implements the functionality you're trying to realize is somewhere between a science and an art. This is no surprise to anyone who's actually written any software, tried to debug software, or divine software's correctness by stepping through it; however, it's not the key point of this article.

  • Java Moving Forward With Faster Pace Release Schedule, Modular System
  • Onwards to Valhalla: Java ain't dead yet and it's only getting bigger

    Scale was big at the JavaOne conference this week. Spotify lauded its success scaling with Java, and Oracle execs practically squealed as they reeled off adoption statistics. Big Red believes the next ten years belong to Java.

    "We want the next decade to be Java first, Java always," vice president Mark Cavage said on stage.

    Of course Java is already big and among those on stage was Alibaba, one of the world's largest Java users, which talked up its ability to run more than a million JVM instances at once.

Programming: Node.js, GCC, PyPy, PHP

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  • Node.js is Strong and Growing

    As we come into this year’s Node.js Interactive conference it’s a good time to reflect on the State of Node.js, and by any reasonable measure the state of Node.js is very strong. Every day there are more than 8.8 million Node instances online, that number has grown by 800,000 in the last nine months alone. Every week there are more than 3 billion downloads of npm packages. The number of Node.js contributors has grown from 1,100 contributors last year to more than 1,500 contributors today. To date there have been a total of 444 releases, and we have 39,672 stars on Github. This is an enviable position for any technology and a testament to the value of Node.js and the dedication of the Node.js community.  

  • SUSE Developer Working On AMD Zen Tuning For GCC

    Veteran GCC contributor and SUSE developer Jan Hubicka has begun working on some Zen tuning within the GNU Compiler Collection for benefiting the Ryzen / Threadripper / Epyc processors.

    While GCC has already had the "znver1" scheduler model and some tuning for this new CPU microarchitecture, tuning a complicated compiler stack is a virtually never-ending process, just as the LLVM/Clang znver1 support continues to be refined too. AMD has long partnered with SUSE for compiler engineering excellence from working on GCC HSA code to the initial x86_64 bring-up and much more over the years. Given Hubicka now working on Zen tuning, this looks to be the latest involvement.

  • PyPy v5.9 released
  • PyPy v5.9 Released, Now Supports Pandas, NumPy

    The PyPy team is proud to release both PyPy3.5 v5.9 (a beta-quality interpreter for Python 3.5 syntax) and PyPy2.7 v5.9 (an interpreter supporting Python 2.7 syntax).

  • PyPy 5.9 Released With Faster JSON Parser, Greater Compatibility

    PyPy, the self-hosting alternative Python interpreter, is up to version 5.9 for its Python 2 and Python 3 language support.

    PyPy 5.9 brings support for Numpy and Pandas with its Python 2.7 implementation, greater compatibility in conjunction with Cython 0.27.1, an optimized JSON parser, updated CFFI, improvements to the C API compatibility layer, and other updates.

  • Red Hat will provide PHP 7.1 for RHEL (and CentOS)

Java: Java EE, Java 9, "Confusing" APIs

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  • Under Eclipse, changes to Java EE begin

    For one, Oracle is making the Java EE technology compatibility kits (TCK), which ascertain if an implementation is compliant with Java, available via open source. Eclipse Executive Director Milinkovich called this “a very fundamental change to the dynamics of this ecosystem.”

  • Java 9 Debuts with Jigsaw Modular Approach at JavaOne

    The Java Platform Standard Edition (Java SE) version 9 is now generally available bringing with it a number of new features to help make Java more modular and efficient. At the JavaOne conference in San Francisco on Oct. 2, Mark Reinhold Chief Architect, Java Platform Group at Oracle outlined some of the new Java 9 enhancements and provided insight on what's next.

    "Java 9 is here," Reinhold said. "That means that Jigsaw is here."

    Project Jigsaw is an effort that Oracle has been talking about since September 2010, just after the company completed its' acquisition of Sun Microsystems. Jigsaw is an effort to turn Java into a more modular stack, including a module subsystem to help make the programming language more efficient.

  • Secure coding in Java: Bad online advice and confusing APIs

    For programmers and software developers, the Internet forums provide a great place to exchange knowledge and seek answers to concrete coding conundrums. Alas, they are not always the source of accurate information.

Programming: FreeBSD, 'Outraged' Programmers, and Kid Programmers

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Development
  • FreeBSD Quarterly Status Report - Second Quarter 2017

    Much of the development work done this quarter was not particularly visible, especially the effort needed to ensure the upcoming 11.1 release has as few regressions as possible. Planning is also well under way for the 10.4 maintenance release which will quickly follow it.

    Further work focused on moving the arm architectures' support closer to tier-1 status and improving documentation. In addition, large changes were made to the src and ports trees.

  • Outraged programmers forced a rare concession from Facebook on its open-source software
  • Kids can't code without computers

    Hour of Code is a global movement that aims to demystify code by introducing students and teachers to the basics of programming through direct participation in open source software projects. It currently reaches tens of millions of students in almost 200 countries. Similarly, Kids Can Code teaches children to code, based on the belief that a basic understanding of software engineering provides a set of fundamental skills that is vital to both to the child's future and that of the global economy. Kids That Code offers unique programs in which children learn computer programming, game development, website creation, electronics, and more. Google’s Code-In is an annual programming competition for high school and secondary school students aged 13-17. The program encourages young people to complete tasks specified by various partnering open source organizations. These are just a few examples of the growing numbers of communities working to introduce and foster interest in software development and open source software. Tools such as Alice, Hackety Hack, Scratch, and others provide a platform along with activities and resources for teaching and learning.

    But there's a catch: Students can't participate in any of these valuable programs—nor can they use Alice, Hackety Hack, Scratch, or any other software—if they don't have a computer.

Server/Development: GNU Emacs. HHVM 3.22, Container Linux by and Microservice Architectures

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Development
Server
  • GNU Emacs: A Great Text Editor For Ubuntu/Linux Mint

    Emacs text editor doesn't need any introduction because it is quite famous and used widely. Emacs is a free, open-source, extensible, customizable text editor. It is cross-platform available for Linux, Windows and Mac, developed by GNU project and released under GNU GPL license. Development of the first Emacs began in the mid-1970s, and work on its direct descendent, GNU Emacs, continues actively as of 2017. Richard Stallman began work on GNU Emacs in 1984 to produce a free software alternative to the proprietary Gosling Emacs.
    Emacs has over 10,000 built-in commands and its user interface allows the user to combine these commands into macros to automate work. Additionally, implementations of Emacs typically feature a dialect of the Lisp programming language that provides a deep extension capability, allowing users and developers to write new commands and applications for the editor. Extensions have been written to manage email, files, outlines, and RSS feeds, as well as clones of ELIZA, Pong, Conway's Life, Snake and Tetris.

  • HHVM 3.22

    HHVM 3.22 is released! This release primarily contains bug fixes, performance improvements, and supporting work for future improvements. Packages have been published in the usual places; see the installation instructions for more information.

  • HHVM 3.22 Brings More Performance Improvements, Bug Fixes

    HHVM 3.22 is now available as this alternative PHP implementation and what serves as the basis for Facebook's Hack programming language.

    While HHVM 3.22 supports PHP5/PHP7, keep in mind Facebook recently announced they are eventually abandoning their PHP focus in favor of focusing HHVM on their Hack language. HHVM 3.24 will be the last release focusing on PHP compatibility while support may still work beyond that for some time, but Hack is Facebook's focus.

  • Container Linux by CoreOS

    Container Linux by CoreOS, originally named CoreOS Linux, is an open source operating system (OS) that provides the functionality required to deploy and manage applications within containers. Based on the Linux kernel, Container Linux by CoreOS is designed for massive scale, with management features to ensure minimal operational overhead.

  • The Role of API Gateways in Microservice Architectures

    Despite their differences in nomenclature, newly emerging service meshes aren’t all that different that API Gateways, and the similarities between the two will continue to grow over time, so predicts Marco Palladino, Chief Technology Officer of API Gateway provider Mashape.

    The two technologies actually offer quite similar functionality, Palladino noted. API Gateways, such as Amazon Web Services‘ API Gateway or Mashape’s own open source Kong, have been primarily used over the last decade or so for mapping external traffic to internal resources, whereas the more recently developed service meshes — such as Lyft’s Envoy or Uber’s Catylist— have been primarily been on brokering internal resources in a microservices architecture.

Development: Blockchain for Good Hackathon, ASUS Tinker Board, React License, JavaScript, Pascal, Python

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Development
  • Blockchain for Good Hackathon, Saturday, 30 September and Sunday, 1 October

    The Blockchain for Good Hackathon takes place Saturday, 30 September and Sunday, 1 October. Full agenda can be found here.

  • ASUS Tinker Board Is An Interesting ARM SBC For About $60 USD

    Earlier this year ASUS announced the Tinker Board as their first step into the ARM single board computer world. Earlier this month I finally received a Tinker Board for testing and it has been quite interesting to say the least. The Tinker Board with its Rockchip SoC has been among the most competitive ARM SBCs we have tested to date in its price range and the form factor is compatible with the Raspberry Pi.

  • Configure Thunderbird to send patch friendly
  • Facebook to Relicense React Under MIT [Ed: as we hoped [1, 2]]

    Facebook has decided to change the React license from BSD+Patents to MIT to make it possible for companies to include React in Apache projects, and to avoid uncertain relationship with the open source community.

    Adam Wolff, an Engineering Director at Facebook, has announced that a number of projects - React, Jest, Flow, and Immutable.js – will soon start using the more standard MIT License instead of BSD+Patents. The reason provided is "because React is the foundation of a broad ecosystem of open source software for the web, and we don't want to hold back forward progress for nontechnical reasons." While aware that the React’s BSD+Patents license has created "uncertainty" among users of the library, prompting some to select an alternative solution, Facebook does not "expect to win these teams back" but they still hope some will reconsider the issue. The change in license will become effective when React 16 will be released next week.

    Regarding other projects, Wolff said that "many of our popular projects will keep the BSD + Patents license for now", while they are "evaluating those projects' licenses too, but each project is different and alternative licensing options will depend on a variety of factors." It seems from this clause that Facebook plans to get rid of the BSD+Patents license entirely, but they need to figure out the best option for each project.

    [...]

    Facebook’s plan to switch to a standard license MIT, supported by Apache, completely solves this problem with React and several other projects. It remains to see what happens with the license of other Facebook projects, and how much this license issue has affected how React is perceived by the community.

  • To type or not to type: quantifying detectable bugs in JavaScript
  • Plug For PASCAL
  • V. Anton Spraul's Think Like a Programmer, Python Edition

10 Open Source Skills, Data Analysis Skills and Programming Languages

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Development
  • 10 Open Source Skills That Can Lead to Higher Pay

    Last month, The Linux Foundation and the online job board Dice released the results of a survey about open source hiring. It found that 67 percent of managers expected their hiring of open source professionals to increase more than their hiring of other types of IT workers.

    In addition, 42 percent of managers surveyed said they need to hire more open source talent because they were increasing their use of open source technologies, and 30 said open source was becoming core to their business. A vast majority — 89 percent — of hiring managers said that they were finding it difficult to find the open source talent they need to fill positions.

  • If you want to upgrade your data analysis skills, which programming language should you learn?

    For a growing number of people, data analysis is a central part of their job. Increased data availability, more powerful computing, and an emphasis on analytics-driven decision in business has made it a heyday for data science. According to a report from IBM, in 2015 there were 2.35 million openings for data analytics jobs in the US. It estimates that number will rise to 2.72 million by 2020.

    A significant share of people who crunch numbers for a living use Microsoft Excel or other spreadsheet programs like Google Sheets. Others use proprietary statistical software like SAS, Stata, or SPSS that they often first learned in school.

  • std::bind

    In digging through the ASIO C++ library examples, I came across an actual use of std::bind. Its entry in cppreference seemed like buzzword salad, so I never previously had paid it any attention.

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More in Tux Machines

Librem 5 Phone Progress Report

  • Librem 5 Phone Progress Report – The First of Many More to Come!
    First, let me apologize for the silence. It was not because we went into hibernation for the winter, but because we were so busy in the initial preparation and planning of a totally new product while orienting an entirely new development team. Since we are more settled into place now, we want to change this pattern of silence and provide regular updates. Purism will be giving weekly news update posts every Tuesday, rotating between progress on phone development from a technology viewpoint (the hardware, kernel, OS, etc.) and an art of design viewpoint (UI/UX from GNOME/GTK to KDE/Plasma). To kickoff this new update process, this post will discus the technological progress of the Librem 5 since November of 2017.
  • Purism Eyeing The i.MX8M For The Librem 5 Smartphone, Issues First Status Update
    If you have been curious about the state of Purism's Librem 5 smartphone project since its successful crowdfunding last year and expedited plans to begin shipping this Linux smartphone in early 2019, the company has issued their first status update.

Benchmarking Retpoline-Enabled GCC 8 With -mindirect-branch=thunk

We have looked several times already at the performance impact of Retpoline support in the Linux kernel, but what about building user-space packages with -mindirect-branch=thunk? Here is the performance cost to building some performance tests in user-space with -mindirect-branch=thunk and -mindirect-branch=thunk-inline. Read more

An introduction to Inkscape for absolute beginners

Inkscape is a powerful, open source desktop application for creating two-dimensional scalable vector graphics. Although it's primarily an illustration tool, Inkscape is used for a wide range of computer graphic tasks. The variety of what can be done with Inkscape is vast and sometimes surprising. It is used to make diagrams, logos, programmatic marketing materials, web graphics, and even for paper scrapbooking. People also draw game sprites, produce banners, posters, and brochures. Others use Inkscape to draft web design mockups, detail layouts for printed circuit boards, or produce outline files to send to laser cutting equipment. Read more

Behind the scenes with Pop!_OS Linux

In October, Linux PC maker System76 released its homegrown version of Linux, Pop!_OS, giving users the choice between its legacy Ubuntu operating system or the new Pop!_OS flavor of Linux. Recently Opensource.com gave away a System76 laptop with Pop!_OS installed, which made me curious about the company and this new version of Linux, so I spoke with Cassidy James Blaede, Pop!_OS's user experience (UX) designer. Blaede joined System76 in 2014, fresh out of college at the University of Northern Iowa and marriage to his wife, Katie. While in college, he co-founded the elementary OS project and interned at UX consultancy Visual Logic, both of which influenced his work for System76. He started at System76 as a front-end developer and was later promoted to UX architect. Read more