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Sci/Tech

Innovating Nanotechnology with Open Science and AI

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Sci/Tech

Read how Open Source techniques are driving innovation in Nanotechnology by looking into several aspects through Open Science and AI.
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What Does "Ethical" AI Mean for Open Source?

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OSS
Sci/Tech

It would be an understatement to say that artificial intelligence (AI) is much in the news these days. It's widely viewed as likely to usher in the next big step-change in computing, but a recent interesting development in the field has particular implications for open source. It concerns the rise of "ethical" AI.

In October 2016, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, the European Parliament's Committee on Legal Affairs and, in the UK, the House of Commons' Science and Technology Committee, all released reports on how to prepare for the future of AI, with ethical issues being an important component of those reports. At the beginning of last year, the Asilomar AI Principles were published, followed by the Montreal Declaration for a Responsible Development of Artificial Intelligence, announced in November 2017.

Abstract discussions of what ethical AI might or should mean became very real in March 2018. It was revealed then that Google had won a share of the contract for the Pentagon's Project Maven, which uses artificial intelligence to interpret huge quantities of video images collected by aerial drones in order to improve the targeting of subsequent drone strikes. When this became known, it caused a firestorm at Google. Thousands of people there signed an internal petition addressed to the company's CEO, Sundar Pichai, asking him to cancel the project. Hundreds of researchers and academics sent an open letter supporting them, and some Google employees resigned in protest.

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Programming: ProjectQ and Rust

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Development
Moz/FF
Sci/Tech
  • Open-Source Software Framework Makes Quantum Computing More Accessible

    To help further this field, Häner and a team at ETH Zurich created ProjectQ, a free, open-source software framework for quantum computing that allows users to implement their quantum programs in the high-level programming language Python using a powerful and intuitive syntax. ProjectQ can then translate these programs to any type of back-end, either a simulator run on a classical computer or an actual quantum chip.

  • This Week in Rust 245

    Always wanted to contribute to open-source projects but didn't know where to start? Every week we highlight some tasks from the Rust community for you to pick and get started!

Deep learning and free software

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Debian
Sci/Tech

Deep-learning applications typically rely on a trained neural net to accomplish their goal (e.g. photo recognition, automatic translation, or playing go). That neural net uses what is essentially a large collection of weighting numbers that have been empirically determined as part of its training (which generally uses a huge set of training data). A free-software application could use those weights, but there are a number of barriers for users who might want to tweak them for various reasons. A discussion on the debian-devel mailing list recently looked at whether these deep-learning applications can ever truly be considered "free" (as in freedom) because of these pre-computed weights—and the difficulties inherent in changing them.

The conversation was started by Zhou Mo ("Lumin"); he is concerned that, even if deep-learning application projects release the weights under a free license, there are questions about how much freedom that really provides. In particular, he noted that training these networks is done using NVIDIA's proprietary cuDNN library that only runs on NVIDIA hardware.

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Meet the Astronaut AI that Runs on Ubuntu

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Sci/Tech
Ubuntu

Meet CIMON (Crew Interactive Mobile CompanioN). This free-floating Ubuntu-based cyber colleague has been designed to “mitigate” the stresses of, and share the work during, long-term spaceflight.

And to do that he’s had to boldly go where no AI assistant has gone before: space.

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How Docker Is Helping to Save The World (Literally)

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Server
Sci/Tech

There are many different things that individuals might consider to be a life threatening event and then there are extinction level events, for example an asteroid hitting Earth.

While the idea of an asteroid hitting Earth and ending all life is the stuff of Hollywood movie like Armageddon, it's an actual, though remote, possibility that NASA is investigating, with the help of Docker containers.

NASA is currently developing a mission known as DART - the Double Asteroid Redirection Test, which is a spacecraft that will deploy a kinetic impact technique to deflect an asteroid. Christopher Heistand, DART Flight Software Lead, at the The Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) that is helping to build the DART ship, detailed how his group is using Docker.

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Google's do no evil AI style likely to clash with open source approach

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Google
OSS
Sci/Tech
  • Google's do no evil AI style likely to clash with open source approach

    Google outlined its artificial intelligence principles in a move to placate employees who were worried about their work and research winding up in U.S. weapons systems.

    Guess what? It's already too late. There's no way that Google's open source approach and its headline principle to not allow its AI into weapons is going to mesh. Chances are fairly good that the technology already open sourced is in some fledgling weapon system somewhere. After all, TensorFlow and a bunch of other neural network tools are pretty damn handy.

  • Read Google's AI ethics memo: 'We are not developing AI for use in weapons'
  • Google Plans Not to Renew Its Contract for Project Maven, a Controversial Pentagon Drone AI Imaging Program
  • Google promises not to use A.I. for weapons or surveillance, for the most part
  • Google pledges not to develop AI weapons, but says it will still work with the military

    Google has released a set of principles to guide its work in artificial intelligence, making good on a promise to do so last month following controversy over its involvement in a Department of Defense drone project. The document, titled “Artificial Intelligence at Google: our principles,” does not directly reference this work, but makes clear that the company will not develop AI for use in weaponry. It also outlines a number of broad guidelines for AI, touching issues like bias, privacy, and human oversight.

    While the new principles forbid the development of AI weaponry, they state that Google will continue to work with the military “in many other areas.” Speaking to The Verge, a Google representative said that had these principles been published earlier, the company would likely not have become involved in the Pentagon’s drone project, which used AI to analyze surveillance footage. Although this application was for “non-offensive purposes,” and therefore hypothetically permitted under these guidelines, the representative said it was too close for comfort — suggesting Google will play it safe with future military contracts.

Free/Open Source AI Projects

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OSS
Sci/Tech
  • How open-source computing is making AI affordable

    computing and the cloud have brought many previously unaffordable IT options to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The same is becoming true of artificial intelligence (AI), although it brings new challenges to all sizes of company.

    Even though many of the commercial, high-profile products are aimed at Global 2000 companies, and others marketed at SMEs are perhaps heavier on hype than intelligence, the smarter smaller organisations can learn, build on and use AI techniques right now, with those same open-source and
    .

  • Free Ebook Offers Insight on 16 Open Source AI Projects

    Open source AI is flourishing, with companies developing and open sourcing new AI and machine learning tools at a rapid pace. To help you keep up with the changes and stay informed about the latest projects, The Linux Foundation has published a free ebook by Ibrahim Haddad examining popular open source AI projects, including Acumos AI, Apache Spark, Caffe, TensorFlow, and others.

    “It is increasingly common to see AI as open source projects,” Haddad said. And, “as with any technology where talent premiums are high, the network effects of open source are very strong.”

Scientific Linux 7.5 Released As RHEL 7.5 Rebuild

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Red Hat
Sci/Tech

Testing of the release candidate earlier this month went well and out now is the official Scientific Linux 7.5 release.

Scientific Linux 7.5 is the re-spin derived from upstream Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7.5 and its many changes/improvements.

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How Netflix Deploys Open Source AI to Reveal Your Favorites

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Sci/Tech

In this AI based Science article, we explore How Netflix adopted an Open Source Model to improve their Entertainment Recommender Systems.
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More in Tux Machines

Latest Games for GNU/Linux

  • Little Misfortune is a sweet looking adventure, should hopefully get Linux support
    From the same developer who made Fran Bow (which supports Linux), Little Misfortune is what they're calling an interactive story. With a focus on exploration and the characters, including sweet and dark elements with choices that have consequences. With that in mind, when I spoke to the developer in regards to a Linux build they said "We will try to have it, yes! :)". Not solid, but a very positive response especially since they've supported Linux before.
  • Luna and the Moonling is a sweet puzzle game that's now available on Linux
    Luna and the Moonling from Greyborn Studios is a colourful puzzle game with an aim to put a new spin on block-pushing puzzle gameplay. Note: Key provided by the developer. For those who aren't aware, some of the people from Greyborn Studios previously worked on some pretty major titles like System Shock 2, Thief, Skylanders, Red Faction and quite a few more. "From the moment we released in early access last year we’ve had requests from Linux gamers to support the platform," said Michael Ryan, CTO & Technical Director of Greyborn Studios. "We’re big fans of the platform ourselves and were happy to oblige. We really hope Linux users enjoy the game, and welcome them to the Greyborn community," Ryan said.
  • Odd Realm is a sandbox settlement builder inspired by Dwarf Fortress and Rimworld with Linux support
  • Valve gave out more details about Artifact, including some public APIs and pre-order is up
    Artifact, the multi-lane card game from Valve is closing in on release and so Valve have given out a bunch of new details on what to expect. Firstly, it's now up for pre-order on Steam for £15.99/$20 and for that price you will get 10 card packs, 5 event tickets, and two complete starter decks. Considering how much such packs cost for real-life card games, that price is actually quite reasonable I think. Additional packs of cards will be $1.99, each pack has 12 random cards. You will also be able to buy and sell cards on the Steam Market.
  • Zeon 25, a retro-inspired hardcore shoot 'em up is now in Early Access
    The Doom-inspired UI bar along the bottom looked quite amusing, haven't really seen many games do something like that in recent years. Looks like it could be worth a shot, the action looks intense enough to keep me interested for sure. While it's in Early Access, they're hoping to add a co-op mode along with new maps, new enemies, new levels and so on. The full release is currently scheduled for Q1 2019 although that may change depending on how much feedback they get during development.
  • Neuroslicers is a narrative driven, online competitive cyberpunk RTS that will have Linux support
    Neuroslicers from developer Dream Harvest seems like a very interesting title. A narrative driven, online competitive cyberpunk RTS and it will be coming to Linux.
  • Feral Interactive have put out the system requirements for Total War: WARHAMMER II, due on Linux this month
    Ready your swords and your axe as Total War: WARHAMMER II is heading to Linux this month and Feral Interactive have now put up the system requirements.
  • Here's What You Need to Play Total War: WARHAMMER II on Linux and macOS
    UK based video games publisher Feral Interactive revealed today the official system requirements of the Total War: WARHAMMER II video game for Linux and Mac systems. In mid-June, Feral Interactive teased Linux and Mac gamers with the upcoming release of the Total War: WARHAMMER II port for their beloved platforms, the sequel to the critically acclaimed Total War: WARHAMMER video game released more than two years ago. The company said that the Linux and macOS port is coming in November. Well, November is here, and now Feral Interactive has revealed the official system requirements for playing the Total War: WARHAMMER II video game on Linux and macOS-powered computers, saying that the port will be available on these two platforms later this month.
  • Warhammer: Vermintide 2 ‘Back to Ubersreik’ DLC Remasters Three Maps From The First Game
    Warhammer: Vermintide 2, Fatshark’s first person rat-murdering action game, will be getting another DLC next month. The Back to Ubersreik DLC takes players to the setting of the first Vermintide game, and will feature remasters of three maps seen in the original Vermintide.
  • Dungeon crawler Ebony Spire: Heresy has a rather nice Anniversary Update that's worth a look
    After managing to sell a few thousand copies, the dungeon crawler Ebony Spire: Heresy has a great update now available. For those who missed the story, the developer Bearded Giant Games initially failed to really get anywhere with the game. They wrote a post on Gamasutra about it, where they said it had been a "a soul crushing experience". A pretty sobering reading, as game development has become so much harder in the past few years with stores being flooded with new games. Anyway, many months later they managed to hit over 6,000 sales and so this update is a thank you for keeping the developer going.

IBM/Red Hat: Moving, Supercomputing and How IBM and Red Hat Will Impact Your Cloud Strategy

  • Moving house and moving applications are not the same. Or are they?
    As a Solution Architect I see my job as many things, from supporting customers in adopting Red Hat technology, educating organisations about using open source technologies and the benefits it brings, to thinking of ways to solve business challenges using technology and culture change. However, these are all generally in the space of “green field” app development. But what about all the systems keeping the business going today? The challenges businesses face in dealing with these “legacy” systems are complex, multi-faceted, involve many teams, and often businesses face knowledge gaps in how everything works together. In the public sector, where I work, this problem of legacy systems is arguably larger and more challenging, with the need for organisations to share information, outlined by things like Digital Service Standard. But, it’s worked that way for years, so why change it?
  • Red Hat at Supercomputing 2018: Bringing open source innovation from high performance computing to the enterprise
    All supercomputers on the coveted Top500 list run on Linux, a scalable operating system that has matured over the years to run some of the most critical workloads and in many cases has displaced proprietary operating systems in the process. For the past two decades, Red Hat Enterprise Linux has served as the foundation for building software stacks for many supercomputers. We are looking to continue this trend with the next generation of systems that seek to break the exascale threshold. SC18, a leading supercomputing conference, begins today. Red Hat hopes to hold conversations and share our insights on new supercomputers, including Summit and Sierra, nascent architectures, like Arm, and building more open computing environments that can further negate the need for proprietary and monolithic implementations. The updated Top500 list is an excellent example of how open technologies continue to proliferate in high performance computing (HPC) and highlights how the ongoing software optimization work performed on these systems can benefit their performance.
  • New TOP500 List Lead by DOE Supercomputers
    The latest TOP500 list of the world’s fastest supercomputers is out, a remarkable ranking that shows five Department of Energy supercomputers in the top 10, with the first two captured by Summit at Oak Ridge and Sierra at Livermore. With the number one and number two systems on the planet, the “Rebel Alliance” vendors of IBM, Mellanox, and NVIDIA stand far and tall above the others.
  • How IBM and Red Hat Will Impact Your Cloud Strategy
    Barring a heavy-handed approach to the recent acquisition, IBM and Red Hat can do some amazing things in the market. IBM is a long way from making physical machines. That part of the business went with Lenovo several years ago. So, what has been their focus ever since? Software and services. And, among those software pieces and services has been the cloud. Until today, you may have heard little about IBM’s cloud presence. Although I can assure you it’s there, it was really struggling to compete with the likes of AWS, Azure, and even GCP. Now, with predictions like those from Gartner stating that by 2020, 90% of organizations will adopt hybrid infrastructure management capabilities and that the market in general could be worth $240 billion or more – this was as good a time as any to really take a dive into the cloud management and delivery ecosystem.
  • Improved support information for RHEL on Azure: sosreport plugin updated [Ed: The author a "Microsoft MVP for Visual Studio" (Red Hat hiring them)]

AsciiDoc – text document format for writing

AsciiDoc is a lightweight markup language for writing notes, documentation, articles, books, ebooks, slideshows, web pages, man pages and blogs. It’s a plain text human readable/writable document format that dates back to 2002. AsciiDoc comes with a “converter program” that converts AsciiDoc documents to XHTML, DocBook or HTML. DocBook, in turn, can be converted to other formats such as PDF, TeX, Unix manpages and many more using the tool A2X which comes with AsciiDoc. Most of the Git documentation is written in AsciiDoc. AsciiDoc is highly configurable: both the AsciiDoc source file syntax and the backend output markups (which can be almost any type of SGML/XML markup) can be customized and extended by the user. Read more

The Ceph storage project gets a dedicated open-source foundation

  • The Ceph storage project gets a dedicated open-source foundation
    Ceph is an open source technology for distributed storage that gets very little public attention but that provides the underlying storage services for many of the world’s largest container and OpenStack deployments. It’s used by financial institutions like Bloomberg and Fidelity, cloud service providers like Rackspace and Linode, telcos like Deutsche Telekom, car manufacturers like BMW and software firms like SAP and Salesforce. These days, you can’t have a successful open source project without setting up a foundation that manages the many diverging interests of the community and so it’s maybe no surprise that Ceph is now getting its own foundation. Like so many other projects, the Ceph Foundation will be hosted by the Linux Foundation.
  • The Linux Foundation Launches Ceph Foundation To Advance Open Source Storage
    The Linux Foundation, the nonprofit organization enabling mass innovation through open source, today announces over 30 global technology leaders are forming a new foundation to support the Ceph open source project community. The Ceph project develops a unified distributed storage system providing applications with object, block, and file system interfaces.