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Nuvola Player 4.21 Brings Official Support for Linux Mint, Anghami Support, and More

Nuvola Player 4.21 looks to be a major update to this overlooked media player that gives you instant access to a wide range of popular media streaming services like Spotify, YouTube Music, Apple Music, Deezer, Amazon Music, Jamendo, Tidal, BBC iPlayer, DI.FM, SoundCloud, ownCloud Music, SiriusXM, and many others. Two major changes are implemented in this update, the first being official support for the Linux Mint distribution in the way that the player will no longer give you errors during installation and it better integrates with both the Cinnamon and MATE desktop environments, and the second is support for the Anghami Arabic music streaming service. Read more

Desktop/Laptop: Lenovo, Decline of Microsoft, and GNU/Linux on Laptops

  • Lenovo M93 Ultra Small Desktop PC- OBS Studio – Week 6

    This is a weekly blog looking at the Lenovo M93 Ultra Small Desktop PC running Linux. This week’s blog looks at video recording on the Lenovo M93. When it comes to software, Linux offers a fantastic array of free and open source programs. In the vast majority of areas there’s a wide range of programs to choose from. Sometimes the amount of high quality open source software is bamboozling. But there’s still a few areas which are dominated by a single program. In the case of video recording and streaming, the stand out open source program is OBS Studio. Modern graphic cards perform a variety of tasks. They aren’t just designed for gaming. Many cards help offload video encoding and decoding from the CPU. This helps to lower power consumption and free up resources for the rest of the system. In the case of OBS Studio, this program relies heavily on the GPU. But the Lenovo M93 doesn’t have a dedicated graphics card. This ultra small PC uses the Intel HD Graphics 4600, a mobile integrated graphics solution by Intel launched in May 2013. Performance of the graphics unit is widely reported as in the low-end segment.

  • How Google is continuing to chip away at Microsoft's productivity dominance [Ed: Even the Microsoft boosters admit Microsoft is in trouble...]

    The paths of the digital advertising giants may just be beginning to diverge. While Google will remain dependent on advertising revenue for years to come, the company's levelheaded approach regarding threats to that business may be indicative of a broader shift that could have the future of the company looking a lot more like Microsoft than Facebook. As we were recently reminded when Microsoft executive Brad Smith testified regarding Google's dominance, the two companies have a long-running rivalry. It has included Microsoft chasing Google in online search and mobile phone operating systems and Google chasing Microsoft in cloud computing, productivity suites, and PC operating systems. The startup display of the Surface Duo, which shows the Microsoft logo on one screen and the Android logo on the other, is a great metaphor for the companies' relationship -- separated by a divide designed to bend but not break.

  • [Older] 13 Places to Buy Linux Laptops in 2021

    Almost all the non-Apple computers sold these days come with Windows preinstalled on them. The standard procedure for Linux users is to buy such a computer and then either remove Windows and install Linux, or dual boot Linux with Windows.

Games: Wine, Godot, and GZDoom

  • In less than three years Proton and Steam Play have changed the world of Linux gaming by running more than 14 thousand games

    Few games were as highly anticipated by the end of 2020 and ended up making as much noise (though mostly for bad reasons) as Cyberpunk 2077. The ambitious CD Projekt Red title came with so many bugs and performance issues, especially on next-gen consoles. last, that Sony ended up removing it from its digital store and until the sun today it has not returned. The best version, most reviews agreed, is the PC version, one that could also be played almost from day one on Linux. Yes, one of the most powerful and technically ambitious triple-A games of recent times, played better on Linux than on a PS4 (depending on the PC of course). The point is, if that story doesn’t tell us already how different the Linux gaming landscape is today than it was 5 years ago, nothing will.

  • Godot Engine - Tiles editor progress #3

    It's time for a third progress report on the TileMap and TileSet editors rework! Updates are likely less visually appealing than in the previous progress report, but a lot of groundwork has been done since then. [...] A significant part of my work those past two months has mostly been about reimplementing most of the already existing TileSet features, while introducing more flexibility to it. Most of TileSet's systems (rendering, collisions, physics, navigation, …) are now using a concept of "layers" (this might be renamed). This allows you to customize the properties that the tiles themselves expose. As an example, you could now define several PhysicsBodies per tile with different collision layers/masks. This was not possible before. The remaining of this section describes the TileSet changes I made. Right now, there is no way to edit the tiles' properties in an efficient way. They are only editable using a dedicated inspector for now, but I plan to implement a way to paint values over tiles in the TileSet editor. However, most properties can now be visualized in the tile atlas.

  • Build engine port backed by GZDoom tech 'Raze' has a 1.0 release with Vulkan support

    Raze is a fresh attempt to bring together many different games under one roof including Duke Nukem 3D, Blood, Redneck Rampage, Shadow Warrior and Exhumed/Powerslave. It's actually mainly developed by Christoph Oelckers, one of the lead developers on ZDoom/GZDoom so it's not surprising Raze is using GZDoom tech to make more classic first-person shooters easier to run with an up to date game engine.

KDE/Qt: KWin, Qt, and Walled Gardens

  • Scene Items in KWin by Vlad Zahorodnii

    If your background includes game development, the concept of a scene should sound familiar. A scene is a way to organize the contents of the screen using a tree, where parent nodes affect their child nodes. In a game, a scene would typically consist of elements such as lights, actors, terrain, etc. KWin also has a scene. With this blog post, I want to provide a quick glimpse at the current scene design, and the plan how it can be improved for Wayland. [...] At the end of March, an initial batch of changes to migrate to the item-based design was merged. We still have a lot of work ahead of us, but even with those initial changes, you will already see some improves in the Wayland session. For example, there should less visual artifacts in applications that utilize sub-surfaces, e.g. Firefox. The end goal of the transition to the item-based design is to have a more flexible and extensible scene. So far, the plan is to continue doing refactorings and avoid rewriting the entire compositing machinery, if possible. [...] In short, we still have some work to do to make rendering abstractions in KWin fit well all the cases that there are on Wayland. However, even with the work done so far, the results are very promising!

  • A new face for the Qt Project

    project, could learn how to contribute. Additionally, for current members, having a good way of representing this contribution information will help to analyze these contributions for different Qt modules, and help the decision-making process to boost the development in some modules. This information is already spread in many places, mainly in our wiki, which doesn't facilitate newcomers that don't know their way around to easily find, which raised the motivation of creating a one-page site which will play the role of being the face of the Qt project.

  • Walled gardens

    Plasma Mobile aims to be not a walled garden, and provides a full control/freedom to users, which interestingly also comes with freedom to use the walled garden inside your open garden. If user can not have this freedom or is actively being pushed towards ecosystem liked by the developers, then what we have created is a walled garden with illusion of being open garden. [...] Where we aim that users have full control over their data and do not use closed systems. Which is why we need to find a balance between both of this goals/mission. We need to make sure that our default user experience does not make use of closed ecosystem software and at same time if users/developers have preference or requirement of using other systems we enable them to do so to best of our capability.