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LinuxSecurity - Security Advisories

  • [$] Rebecca Giblin on chokepoint capitalism
    The fourth and final keynote forEverything Open 2023 was givenby Professor Rebecca Giblin of the Melbourne Law School, University ofMelbourne. It revolved around her recent book, Chokepoint Capitalism,which she wrote with Cory Doctorow; it is "a book about why creativelabor markets are rigged — and how to unrig them". Giblin had plannedto be in Melbourne to give her talk in person, but "the universe had otherplans"; she got delayed in Austin,Texas by an unexpected speaking slot at the South by Southwest (SXSW) conference, so she gave her talk via videoconference from there—atnearly midnight in Austin.

  • [$] OpenSUSE MicroOS Desktop: a Flatpak-based immutable distribution
    Immutable Linux distributions are on the rise recently, with multiplepopular distributions creating their own immutable versions; itcould be one of the trends of 2023, aspredicted. While many of these immutabledistributions are focused on server use, there are also some that offer adesktop experience. OpenSUSE MicroOSDesktop is one of them, with a minimal openSUSE Tumbleweed as thebase operating system and applications running as Flatpaks or in containers. In its daily use,it feels a lot like a normal openSUSE desktop. Its biggest benefit isavailability of the newest software releases without sacrificing systemstability.

  • Stenberg: Pre-notification dilemmas
    Curl maintainer Daniel Stenberg expressessome frustrations with the vulnerability notification policiesmaintained by the distros mailing list.
    The week before we were about to ship the curl 8.0.0 release, I emailed the distros mailing list again like I have done so many times before and told them about the upcoming six(!) vulnerabilities we were about to reveal to the world.
    This time turned out to be different.
    Because of our updated policy where the fixes were already committed in a public git repository, the distros mailing list’s policy says that if there is a public commit they consider the issue to be public and thus they refuse to accept any embargo.
    What they call embargo I of course call heads-up time.
    The kernel project has run into similarissues in the past.

  • Security updates for Wednesday
    Security updates have been issued by Debian (unbound and xorg-server), Fedora (stellarium), Oracle (kernel), SUSE (apache2, oracleasm, python-Werkzeug, rubygem-loofah, sudo, and tomcat), and Ubuntu (git, kernel, and linux-hwe-5.19).

  • [$] Ubuntu stops shipping Flatpak by default
    Canonical recently announcedthat it will no longer ship Flatpak aspart of its default installation for the various official Ubuntu flavors,which is in keeping with the practices of the core Ubuntu distribution. TheFlatpak package format has gained popularity among Linux usersfor its convenience and ease of use. Canonical will focus exclusively on its ownpackage-management system, Snap. Thedecision has caused disgruntlementamong some community members, who felt like the distribution was makingthis decision without regard for its users.

  • Security updates for Tuesday
    Security updates have been issued by Debian (dino-im and runc), Fedora (qemu), Red Hat (firefox), SUSE (chromium, containerd, docker, kernel, and systemd), and Ubuntu (graphicsmagick, linux-azure, linux-gcp, linux-oem-5.14, linux-oem-5.17, linux-oem-6.0, linux-oem-6.1, and node-url-parse).

  • [$] The curious case of O_DIRECTORY|O_CREAT
    The open()system call offers a number of flags that modify its behavior; not allcombinations of those flags make sense in a single call. It turns out,though, that the kernel has responded in a surprising way to thecombination of O_CREAT and O_DIRECTORY for a long time.After a 2020 change made that response even more surprising, it seemslikely that this behavior will soon be fixed, resulting in a rare user-visiblesemantic change to a core system call.

  • GnuCash 5.0 Released
    Version 5.0 of the GnuCash accounting tool is out. Changes include anumber of investment-tracking improvements, better completion in theregister window, a reworked report-generation system, and more.

  • Security updates for Monday
    Security updates have been issued by Debian (libreoffice and xen), Fedora (chromium, curl, and xen), Red Hat (kernel, kernel-rt, kpatch-patch, and thunderbird), Scientific Linux (thunderbird), Slackware (tar), SUSE (apache2, ceph, curl, dpdk, helm, libgit2, and php7), and Ubuntu (firefox and thunderbird).

  • Garrett: We need better support for SSH host certificates
    Matthew Garrett looks atthe recent disclosure of GitHub's private host key, how it probablycame about, and what a better approach to key management might look like.
    The main problem is that client tooling just doesn't handle this well. OpenSSH has no way to do TOFU for CAs, just the keys themselves. This means there's no way to do a git clone ssh:// and get a prompt asking you to trust Github's CA. Instead, you need to add a @cert-authority (key) line to your known_hosts file by hand, and since approximately nobody's going to do that there's only marginal benefit in going to the effort to implement this infrastructure. The most important thing we can do to improve the security of the SSH ecosystem is to make it easier to use certificates, and that means improving the behaviour of the clients.

  • [$] User-space shadow stacks (maybe) for 6.4
    Support for shadow stacks on the x86 architecture has been long in coming;LWN first covered this work in 2018. Afterfive years and numerous versions, though, it would appear thatuser-space shadow stacks on x86 might just be supported in the 6.4 kernelrelease. Getting there has required a few changes since we last caught up with this work in early 2022.

  • Security updates for Friday
    Security updates have been issued by Debian (chromium, libdatetime-timezone-perl, and tzdata), Fedora (flatpak and gmailctl), Mageia (firefox, flatpak, golang, gssntlmssp, libmicrohttpd, libtiff, python-flask-security, python-owslib, ruby-rack, thunderbird, unarj, and vim), Red Hat (firefox, kpatch-patch, nss, openssl, and thunderbird), SUSE (containerd, hdf5, qt6-base, and squirrel), and Ubuntu (amanda, gif2apng, graphviz, and linux, linux-aws, linux-azure, linux-gcp, linux-ibm, linux-kvm, linux-lowlatency, linux-oracle, linux-raspi).

  • [$] Free software during wartime
    Just over 27 years ago, John Perry Barlow's declaration of theindependence of Cyberspace claimed that governments "have nosovereignty" over the networked world. In 2023, we have ample reasonto know better than that, but we still expect the free-software communityto be left alone by the affairs of governments much of the time. A coupleof recent episodes related to the war in Ukraine are making it clear thatthere are limits to our independence.

LXer Linux News

  • Best Linux Distros for Security and Privacy
    I’ve compiled this list of the Top 7 Best Linux Distros for Security and Privacy. Each of these distros has unique features that make them ideal for users who are looking for a secure and private computing experience.

  • Nostalgic for VB? BASIC is anything but dead
    Microsoft's attention has moved on, but flame still alive. If you miss the simplicity of putting an app together with drag-and-drop in VB, there are some alternatives that might tickle your tastebuds.…

  • How to Install ERPNext on Ubuntu 22.04
    ERPNext is an open-source ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) system aimed at small and medium-sized businesses. Frappé Technologies develop the software. It includes modules like accounting, CRM, purchasing, sales, website, e-commerce, POS, inventory, project management, etc. This web-based application helps small and medium-sized businesses manage their accounting, sales, purchase, and inventory tasks. This tutorial will show you how to install ERPNext on Ubuntu 22.04.

  • Best Blogging Tips for Success
    The very first step to successful blogging is to make sure you write as you talk. As famous copywriter Eugene Schwartz said, “If it sounds like writing – I rewrite it.” Since there are more than 600 million blogs out of 1.9 billion websites worldwide, you should not expect people to find your blog easily.

  • How to Install Redmine Project Management Software on Debian 11
    Redmine is a free and open-source project management software and issue-tracking tool. It is written using the Ruby on Rails framework and can be integrated with various version control systems. In this tutorial, you will learn how to install Redmine on a Debian 11 server.

  • Machine Learning in Linux: FBCNN – JPEG artifacts removal
    FBCNN (flexible blind convolutional neural network) is software which seeks to remove artifacts from JPEGs while preserving the integrity of the images. It decouples the quality factor from the JPEG image via a decoupler module and then embeds the predicted quality factor into the subsequent reconstructor module through a quality factor attention block for flexible control.

  • Contribute at the Fedora CoreOS, Upgrade, and IoT Test Days
    Fedora test days are events where anyone can help make certain that changes in Fedora work well in an upcoming release. Fedora community members often participate, and the public is welcome at these events. If you’ve never contributed to Fedora before, this is a perfect way to get started. There are five upcoming test days […]

Linux Insider"LinuxInsider"


  • 'Pausing AI Developments Isn't Enough. We Need To Shut It All Down'
    Earlier today, more than 1,100 artificial intelligence experts, industry leaders and researchers signed a petition calling on AI developers to stop training models more powerful than OpenAI's ChatGPT-4 for at least six months. Among those who refrained from signing it was Eliezer Yudkowsky, a decision theorist from the U.S. and lead researcher at the Machine Intelligence Research Institute. He's been working on aligning Artificial General Intelligence since 2001 and is widely regarded as a founder of the field. "This 6-month moratorium would be better than no moratorium," writes Yudkowsky in an opinion piece for Time Magazine. "I refrained from signing because I think the letter is understating the seriousness of the situation and asking for too little to solve it." Yudkowsky cranks up the rhetoric to 100, writing: "If somebody builds a too-powerful AI, under present conditions, I expect that every single member of the human species and all biological life on Earth dies shortly thereafter." Here's an excerpt from his piece: The key issue is not "human-competitive" intelligence (as the open letter puts it); it's what happens after AI gets to smarter-than-human intelligence. Key thresholds there may not be obvious, we definitely can't calculate in advance what happens when, and it currently seems imaginable that a research lab would cross critical lines without noticing. [...] It's not that you can't, in principle, survive creating something much smarter than you; it's that it would require precision and preparation and new scientific insights, and probably not having AI systems composed of giant inscrutable arrays of fractional numbers. [...] It took more than 60 years between when the notion of Artificial Intelligence was first proposed and studied, and for us to reach today's capabilities. Solving safety of superhuman intelligence -- not perfect safety, safety in the sense of "not killing literally everyone" -- could very reasonably take at least half that long. And the thing about trying this with superhuman intelligence is that if you get that wrong on the first try, you do not get to learn from your mistakes, because you are dead. Humanity does not learn from the mistake and dust itself off and try again, as in other challenges we've overcome in our history, because we are all gone. Trying to get anything right on the first really critical try is an extraordinary ask, in science and in engineering. We are not coming in with anything like the approach that would be required to do it successfully. If we held anything in the nascent field of Artificial General Intelligence to the lesser standards of engineering rigor that apply to a bridge meant to carry a couple of thousand cars, the entire field would be shut down tomorrow. We are not prepared. We are not on course to be prepared in any reasonable time window. There is no plan. Progress in AI capabilities is running vastly, vastly ahead of progress in AI alignment or even progress in understanding what the hell is going on inside those systems. If we actually do this, we are all going to die. You can read the full letter signed by AI leaders here.

    Read more of this story at Slashdot.

  • Google Launches Ads Transparency Center As a Searchable Database
    After launching My Ad Center last fall, Google is now introducing the Ads Transparency Center as a "searchable hub of all ads served from verified advertisers." 9to5Google reports: The Ads Transparency Center will let you view all the advertisements a company has run using Google's networks. Each ad includes the date it last ran, format (text, video, etc.), and what region (country) it was shown in: "For example, imagine you're seeing an ad for a skincare product you're interested in, but you don't recognize the brand, or you're curious to understand if you recognize other ads from this brand. With the Ads Transparency Center, you can look up the advertiser and learn more about them before purchasing or visiting their site." You can search by advertiser (with approximate ad quantity noted) or website, with filters for topics, time, and country. Once an advertiser is selected, Google will show the feed of ads with the ability to select for more details. You'll be able to access it directly here or from the My Ad Center, which lets you customize advertising that appears in Search, Discover, Shopping, and YouTube.

    Read more of this story at Slashdot.

  • Binance Concealed Ties To China For Years, Even After 2017 Crypto Crackdown, Report Finds
    Binance CEO Changpeng "CZ" Zhao and other senior executives have been for years concealing the crypto exchange ties with China, according to documents obtained by the Financial Times. CoinTelegraph reports: In a report on March 29, FT claims that Binance had substantial ties to China for several years, contrary to the company's claims that it left the country after a 2017 ban on crypto, including an office still in use by the end of 2019 and a Chinese bank used to pay employees. "We no longer publish our office addresses ... people in China can directly say that our office is not in China," Zhao reportedly said in a company message group in November 2017. Employees were told in 2018 that wages would be paid through a Shanghai-based bank. A year later, personnel on payroll in China were required to attend tax sessions in an office based in the country, according to FT. Based on the messages, Binance employees discussed a media report that claimed the company would open an office in Beijing in 2019. "Reminder: publicly, we have offices in Malta, Singapore, and Uganda. [...] Please do not confirm any offices anywhere else, including China." The report backs up accusations made in a lawsuit filed on March 27 by the United States Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) against the exchange, claiming that Binance obscured the location of its executive offices, as well as the "identities and locations of the entities operating the trading platform." According to the lawsuit, Zhao stated in an internal Binance memo that the policy was intended to "keep countries clean [of violations of law]" by "not landing .com anywhere. This is the main reason .com does not land anywhere."

    Read more of this story at Slashdot.

  • ByteDance-Owned Instagram Rival Lemon8 Hits the US App Store's Top 10
    An anonymous reader quotes a report from TechCrunch: As U.S. lawmakers move forward with their plans for a TikTok ban or forced sale, the app's Chinese parent company ByteDance is driving another of its social platforms into the Top Charts of the U.S. App Store. ByteDance-owned app Lemon8, an Instagram rival that describes itself as a "lifestyle community," jumped into the U.S. App Store's Top Charts on Monday, becoming the No. 10 Overall app, across both apps and games. Today, it's ranked No. 9 on the App Store's Top Apps chart, excluding games. This is a dramatic move for the little-known app and one that points to paid user acquisition efforts powering this surge. Prior to yesterday, the Lemon8 app had never before ranked in the Top 200 Overall Charts in the U.S., according to app store intelligence provided to TechCrunch by The firm confirms that such a fast move from being an unranked app to being No. 9 among the top free apps in the U.S. -- ahead of YouTube, WhatsApp, Gmail and Facebook -- implies a "significant" and "recent" user acquisition push on the app publisher's part. Unfortunately, because the app is so new to the App Store's Top Charts, third-party app analytics firms don't yet have precise data on Lemon8's U.S. installs, or how those installs have recently changed over the past few days. [...] According to app intelligence provider Apptopia's data, Lemon8 debuted on both iOS and Android in March 2020 and has since gained 16 million global downloads, with Japan as its top market, accounting for 38% of its total installs. While the firm also doesn't have a figure for its U.S. installs, it was able to estimate the app currently has 4.25 million monthly active users. TechCrunch believes ByteDance may be leveraging TikTok to drive app installs of Lemon8. "Over on TikTok, we noticed a number of creators recently began posting about Lemon8, with many new videos appearing in just the past 24 hours," reports TechCrunch. "Concerningly, many of their reviews are extremely positive but are not marked as sponsored content. [...] In fact, some creators even said they're getting the app in case TikTok gets banned."

    Read more of this story at Slashdot.

  • EA Is Cutting About 800 Jobs, or 6% of Workforce, and Reducing Office Space
    Electronic Arts (EA) is cutting about 800 jobs, or 6% of its workforce, and reducing office space, the video game company said Wednesday. CNBC reports: The company expects to take impairment charges ranging from $170 to $200 million, according to an SEC filing. "As we drive greater focus across our portfolio, we are moving away from projects that do not contribute to our strategy, reviewing our real estate footprint, and restructuring some of our teams," CEO Andrew Wilson wrote in a note to employees. Layoffs are "the most difficult part, and we are working through the process with the utmost care and respect," he wrote. EA had just under 13,000 employees, according to a quarterly filing in March 2022.

    Read more of this story at Slashdot.

  • US Court Sanctions Google For Deleting Evidence In Antitrust Cases
    Alphabet's Google LLC intentionally destroyed employee "chat" evidence in antitrust litigation in California and must pay sanctions and face a possible penalty at trial, a U.S. judge ruled on Tuesday. Reuters reports: U.S. District Judge James Donato in San Francisco said in his order (PDF) that Google "fell strikingly short" in its duties to preserve records. The ruling is part of a multidistrict litigation that includes a consumer class action with as many as 21 million residents; 38 states and the District of Columbia; and companies including Epic Games Inc and Match Group LLC. The consumers and other plaintiffs are challenging Google's alleged monopoly for distributing Android mobile applications, allegations that Google has denied. Plaintiffs have claimed aggregate damages of $4.7 billion. The judge asked the plaintiffs' lawyers by April 21 to provide an amount in legal fees they are seeking as a sanction. Separately, the plaintiffs will have a chance to urge Donato to tell jurors that Google destroyed information that was unfavorable to it. He said he wants to see "the state of play" at a later stage in the case. "Google has tried to downplay the problem and displayed a dismissive attitude ill tuned to the gravity of its conduct," the judge said.

    Read more of this story at Slashdot.

  • After Two Years, Autodesk Maya and AutoCAD Become Apple Silicon-Native
    An anonymous reader quotes a report from Ars Technica: It has been two years and four months since the first Apple Silicon Mac hit the market, and now Autodesk has finally updated some of its massively popular professional applications (AutoCAD and Maya) to run natively on M1 and M2 chips. The availability of AutoCAD for Mac 2024 was announced in a blog post on Autodesk's website on March 28. Like other major AutoCAD updates, it adds new features like expanded automation tools and easier workflows, but the announcement that "for the first time, AutoCAD for Mac 2024 and AutoCAD LT for Mac 2024 now run natively on both Intel and Apple Silicon architectures, including M1 and M2 chips in the M-series chips" is clearly the headlining feature. Autodesk claims that Apple Silicon support "can increase overall performance by up to two times" compared to the 2023 version of AutoCAD. A day later, on March 29, Autodesk revealed the 2024 update for Maya, its 3D modeling software chiefly used in game development, film production, and visual effects. Maya 2024 brings native Apple Silicon support in addition to a slew of new features, including the LookDevX material editor, Hydra support, and so on. But in contrast to many other makers of widespread professional software in similar industries, such as Adobe and Unity, Autodesk's efforts to support Apple Silicon -- which were announced two years ago -- have been ongoing for an interminably long time. Even open source Maya competitor Blender beat Autodesk to the punch.

    Read more of this story at Slashdot.

  • Microsoft Patched Bing Vulnerability That Allowed Snooping on Email and Other Data
    Microsoft patched a dangerous security issue in Bing last month just days before it launched a new artificial intelligence-powered version of the search engine. From a report: The problem was discovered by outside researchers at the security firm Wiz. It was created by a mistake in the way that Microsoft configured applications on Azure, its cloud-computing platform, and could be used to gain access to emails and other documents of people who used Bing, the researchers said. Microsoft fixed the problem on Feb. 2, according to Ami Luttwak, Wiz's chief technology officer. Five days later Satya Nadella introduced the new generative AI capabilities to Bing, bringing a renewed interest in Microsoft's 14-year-old search engine. Usage of Bing has jumped, rising to more than 100 million daily active users in the month since the upgrade.

    Read more of this story at Slashdot.

  • Free AI Programs Prone To Security Risks, Researchers Say
    Companies rushing to adopt hot new types of artificial intelligence should exercise caution when using open-source versions of the technology, some of which may not work as advertised or include flaws that hackers can exploit, security researchers say. From a report: There are few ways to know in advance if a particular AI model -- a program made up of algorithms that can do such things as generate text, images and predictions -- is safe, said Hyrum Anderson, distinguished engineer at Robust Intelligence, a machine learning security company that lists the US Defense Department as a client. Anderson said he found that half the publicly available models for classifying images failed 40% of his tests. The goal was to determine whether a malicious actor could alter the outputs of AI programs in a manner that could constitute a security risk or provide incorrect information. Often, models use file types that are particularly prone to security flaws, Anderson said. It's an issue because so many companies are grabbing models from publicly available sources without fully understanding the underlying technology, rather than creating their own. Ninety percent of the companies Robust Intelligence works with download models from Hugging Face, a repository of AI models, he said.

    Read more of this story at Slashdot.

  • Sam Bankman-Fried's Legal Defense Is Being Funded With Alameda Money He Gifted His Father
    While still CEO of now-collapsed FTX, Sam Bankman-Fried transferred millions of dollars to his father. Some of those funds have since been used to pay for his mounting legal fees, Forbes os reporting, citing two sources close to the company. From a report: Sam Bankman-Fried, founder of fallen cryptocurrency exchange FTX who claimed to have just $100,000 in his bank account last November, is preparing for trial in October backed by a roster of powerful attorneys. But it has remained unclear, until now, how the former billionaire would afford his pricey defense. Forbes has learned that Bankman-Fried has been paying legal fees from a multi-million dollar gift he gave his father with money borrowed from FTX's sister company. In 2021, while CEO of FTX, Bankman-Fried made a large monetary gift to his father, Stanford Law professor Joseph Bankman, two sources with operational knowledge of both companies told Forbes. It was funded by a loan from the exchange's trading firm, Alameda Research, they said. Bankman-Fried -- who has pleaded not guilty to 12 criminal charges including wire fraud, money laundering and securities fraud, and faces an additional bribery charge -- is accused of misappropriating FTX customer funds through Alameda dating back to the exchange's founding in 2019. A source close to Bankman-Fried told Forbes that his defense costs are likely in the single-digit-millions range. "I didn't steal funds, and I certainly didn't stash billions away," he wrote on Substack earlier this year. Two additional sources familiar with the family told Forbes that Bankman once begged his son to put away savings, but Bankman-Fried reportedly declined.

    Read more of this story at Slashdot.

  • Exxon's Climate Opponents Were Infiltrated by Massive Hacking-for-Hire Operation
    An anonymous reader shares a report: In the midst of perpetrating what federal prosecutors say was a massive corporate hacking campaign, Israeli private detective Aviram Azari in 2017 received welcome news. A group of hackers in India wrote him to say they had successfully infiltrated the email and social-media accounts of a group of environmental activists campaigning against Exxon. "On a happy note I would like to report some success below: Project Name Rainbow," the hackers wrote in electronic messages that were viewed by The Wall Street Journal. The messages included evidence of the successful intrusions, including screenshots of compromised email inboxes. The messages along with court records reveal new details about the hacking campaign, including that thousands of individuals and companies were targeted and at least some of the attacks resulted in the hackers successfully gaining access to the private accounts of the victims and obtaining their passwords. Among the targets was the Rockefeller Family Fund, a charity created by some of the heirs of John D. Rockefeller, who founded Exxon's forebear Standard Oil. The fund has for years been involved in campaigns arguing that Exxon hid from the public the full extent of what it knew internally about climate change and the role fossil fuels played in causing it.

    Read more of this story at Slashdot.

  • Senator Rand Paul Opposes TikTok Ban Push in Congress
    Republican Senator Rand Paul on Wednesday opposed efforts in Congress to ban popular Chinese-owned social media app TikTok, which is used by more than 150 million Americans. From a report: A small but growing number of Democrats and Republicans have raised concerns, citing free speech and other issues and have objected to legislation targeting TikTok as overly broad. Republican Senator Josh Hawley said this week he hoped to get unanimous consent for a TikTok ban bill. "Congressional Republicans have come up with a national strategy to permanently lose elections for a generation: Ban a social media app called TikTok that 94 million, primarily young Americans, use," Paul said in an opinion piece published Wednesday in Louisville, Kentucky's Courier-Journal. "Before banning TikTok, these censors might want to discover that China's government already bans TikTok. Hmmm ... do we really want to emulate China's speech bans?" Paul added: "If you don't like TikTok or Facebook or YouTube, don't use them. But don't think any interpretation of the Constitution gives you the right to ban them."

    Read more of this story at Slashdot.

  • Intel Says Power-Efficient Sierra Forest Chip Will Be Delivered in H1 2024
    U.S. chip giant Intel said on Wednesday its first semiconductor for data center customers focused on power efficiency, Sierra Forest, would be delivered in the first half of next year, as it outlined a chip release schedule after prior delays. From a report: "It's been a challenging few years as we had introduced a lot of innovation but also a lot of complexity and our product release dates had pushed out," Intel Data Center and AI Group head Sandra Rivera told Reuters ahead of an investor event. Intel still dominates the markets for PC and server processing chips, with a market share greater than 70%, tech research firm IDC has calculated. But that is down from more than 90% in 2017. Intel's most powerful fourth-generation Xeon processor for data centers, Sapphire Rapids, had faced delays that gave competitor Advanced Micro Devices time to catch up. But Rivera said Intel's "roadmap is on track" and was "hitting all of our key engineering milestones."

    Read more of this story at Slashdot.

  • Apple Sets June 5 WWDC To Debut Mixed-Reality Headset
    Apple set a June 5 date for the event where it plans to unveil a mixed-reality headset, the first major new product since its smartwatch debuted eight years ago. From a report: The company scheduled its annual Worldwide Developers Conference, better known as WWDC, to kick off on that Monday and run through Friday, June 9. It typically uses the first day of the conference to discuss its next-generation platforms and operating systems. This year's conference will be held as an "all-day experience" at headquarters in Cupertino, California. Central to the agenda this time around will be the headset, likely to be dubbed the Reality One or Reality Pro, Bloomberg News has reported. Apple will also showcase the accompanying xrOS operating system and a way for developers to write apps for the device.

    Read more of this story at Slashdot.

  • AV1 Live Streaming Is Finally Coming To YouTube
    An anonymous reader shares a report: In a recent video, YouTuber EposVox reports that YouTube is finally rolling out AV1 live-streaming support to the platform, with the tech currently in a beta. AV1 will provide YouTube live streams with a substantial increase in video quality, and allow users to stream at up to 4K 60FPS with Twitch-limited bitrates. EposVox was able to get early access to a development build of OBS 29.1 to check out YouTube's live streaming AV1 capabilities. The newest addition to the AV1 rollout is YouTube live streaming support with AV1. YouTube just rolled out beta support for a new video live-streaming standard known as Enhanced RTMP, which will allow streamers to utilize several of the latest video codecs, including AV1, VP9, and HEVC (H.265) to live stream videos to YouTube. EposVox was able to test drive Enhanced RTMP, with a development build of OBS 21.9 to stream AV1 gaming content to YouTube directly. According to EposVox, the quality difference is night and day compared to H.264. The quality jump with AV1, allowed him to drive higher quality video to his live stream, and remove pixelation altogether. Just for perspective on how powerful AV1 is, EposVox was able to run an AV1 1440P 60FPS live stream of Halo Infinite at 500kbps - a bitrate 15x lower than the Twitch limit, and the stream was still perfectly watchable. For normal use cases, EposVox found that 8mbps was the sweet spot for 1440P 60FPS, and around 15mbps for 1440P 60FPS. For a perfectly good-looking live stream with none or close to no pixelization. For users that still want to stream 1080P video, all you'll need is a 4MBps bitrate to achieve the same result. This is a night and day difference to H.264 where 8Mbps was about the minimum you want for a high-quality 1080P 60FPS video stream, and even in this situation, pixelation is still very likely to occur with a lot of streams.

    Read more of this story at Slashdot.

The Register

  • Malware disguised as Tor browser steals $400k in cryptocash
    Beware of third party downloads
    Clipboard-injector malware disguised as Tor browser installers has been used to steal about $400,000 in cryptocurrency from nearly 16,000 users worldwide so far in 2023, according to Kaspersky researchers.…

  • This US national lab turned to AI to hunt rogue nukes
    All it needs to do is detect ■■■■■■■■■■ in the ■■■■■ at ■■■■■■ when the ■■■■■■■■
    Researchers at America's Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) are developing machine learning techniques to help the Feds crack down on potentially rogue nuclear weapons.…

  • Diving DRAM prices are a problem not even AI can solve
    Analysts just don't see digi-brains making a difference to dismal demand that's caused deep discounting
    If you're in the market for a memory-optimized server or top-of-the-range workstation, the industry watchers at TrendForce have some good news.…

  • Lockheed Martin launches biz to build lunar satellite network
    Crescent Space will be 'well positioned' to get a piece of NASA's cash pie, no contract yet
    Aerospace firm Lockheed Martin has announced the launch of a subsidiary to build a satellite communications network to connect future Moon missions with those of us stuck on Earth. …

  • Judge grants subpoena to ID Twitter source code leaker
    Unmasking also in store for anyone who's 'posted, uploaded, downloaded or modified' tweet biz code
    A California court has granted Twitter's request to unmask the GitHub user who uploaded its source code – along with anyone who "posted, uploaded, downloaded or modified" said code.…

  • Had enough of Android? First 'Focal' based Ubuntu Touch is out
    First version built on 20.04 hits smartphones and tablets of UBPorts fans
    The UBPorts project has just released the fruit of a lot of labor, especially for a volunteer group, emitting a fresh version of its smartphone OS – which includes the Lomiri UI, formerly known as Unity 8.…

  • Microsoft Defender shoots down legit URLs as malicious
    Those hoping to use nefarious websites like, er, Zoom are overrun by alerts. Redmond 'investigating'
    Updated Microsoft's at-times-glitchy Defender service is again causing headaches for IT admins by flagging legitimate URLs as malicious.…

  • Broadcom-VMware merger probe to enter deeper second stage
    Competition regulators in Britain opt for Phase II discovery over worries about prices and rival tech access
    UK government will proceed with an in-depth investigation into the proposed buyout of VMware by Broadcom, dashing the companies' hopes the merger might be waved through quickly by regulatory bodies.…

  • Micron writes off $1.43B in inventory as sales dive, claims only way is up
    AIs are going to need memory and storage silicon, you know
    Micron has had another bad quarter – one of its largest quarterly losses ever – with revenues plunging and predictions of further workforce reductions, but claims its performance was in line with expectations, saying it expects to see a return to growth in the near future.…

  • Intel pours Raptor Lake chips into latest NUC Mini PC line
    Big is not always beautiful
    Just days after lifting the covers off the 13th-gen Core vPro CPUs, Intel has revealed the latest NUC line of miniature PCs, giving a decent chunk of compute power in a space-saving 4x4in form factor.…

  • SHEIN has the look of America's next tech-meets-geopolitics fit-up
    Chinese fast fashion vendor could be this season's TikTok thanks to alleged tax evasion, slave labour, toxic goods, and an outsized carbon footprint
    Another battle is brewing over a Chinese tech startup that's become a big hit in the USA. This time all eyes are on fast fashion e-commerce outfit SHEIN, which allegedly keeps its prices low by exploiting a loophole to avoid paying taxes.…

  • Boffins claim discovery of the first piezoelectric liquid
    Move over, magic crystals – electric syrup is here
    A research team from Michigan State University (MSU) has discovered a liquid they say "defies a simple theoretical explanation" because it has piezoelectric characteristics.…

  • Apple sued for allegedly firing, threatening union organizers
    iGiant urged to think different about workers' rights
    Apple has been accused of unlawfully firing and threatening pro-union retail store workers in two complaints filed by the Communications Workers of America with the National Labor Relations Board. …

  • China urges Apple to improve security and privacy
    It's a juicy market that welcomes foreign investment, National development boss reminds Tim Cook
    Senior Chinese government officials have urged Apple CEO Tim Cook to improve the security and privacy features of his company's products.…

  • Microsoft enlarges its cockpit of Copilots to include security
    It starts with chat bots inventing D&D campaigns and ends with AI all over your Excel and network logs
    Microsoft's sprint to push generative AI into all parts of its broad portfolio is reaching the cybersecurity realm with the introduction today of Security Copilot, a GPT-4-based service that might assist security teams pushing back against modern threats.…

  • US police have run nearly 1M Clearview AI searches, says founder
    Crimes Clearview has helped solve include murder and the devastating scourge of ... shoplifting
    US police have used Clearview AI facial recognition tech to conduct nearly one million searches since the company launched in 2017 – but its founder and CEO said he's still unwilling to testify to its accuracy.…

  • Nexperia claims Newport Wafer may close if sale goes ahead
    Staff may head for exit, followed by customers, it would 'decimate' ops, says CEO
    Newport Wafer Fab may become commercially unviable if UK government insists on its sale under national security legislation, according to current owner Nexperia, which is challenging the decision in court.…

  • For whom the bell polls: Twitter voting is for Blue users only now
    Is there a role for a poll for just Blue Tickers, not proles, or is this troll a social media own goal?
    Opinion Even those who do spend $7* a month to get (or keep) that treasured blue tick next to their name on Twitter may be peeved to find out that soon only verified users will be allowed to vote in polls on the platform. Bring it on: electronic ballots where only 10 people click.…

  • British Prime Minister Sunak’s plans for UK NFT on ice
    Consultation with the Treasury puts non-fungible token proposals under review
    In what can only be described as a typically British piece of dithering, the Treasury said it has decided to put plans for the Royal Mint to launch an NFT — announced with great fanfare last year — on hold.…

  • Rackspace racks up job cuts amid market downturn and talk of offshoring
    Everything from inflation, to war in Ukraine and high interest rates 'point to recession', says CEO in memo to staff
    Exclusive Cloud reseller and integrator Rackspace Technology is kicking off a restructuring process involving the loss of nearly 4 percent of the global workforce due to a slowdown in cloud computing growth rates.…

  • Nostalgic for VB? BASIC is anything but dead
    Microsoft's attention has moved on, but flame still alive
    If you miss the simplicity of putting an app together with drag-and-drop in VB, there are some alternatives that might tickle your tastebuds.…

  • Microsoft promises it's made Teams less confusing and resource hungry
    Aimed to make it twice as fast, more consistent and happy running on more hardware
    Microsoft has released preview versions of an improved Teams desktop client for Windows that it aimed to make "twice as fast while using half the system resources" while also reducing user confusion and improving interface consistency.…

  • Jack Ma is back, and he has some feelpinions to share
    Offering wisdom on AI signals the Alibaba boss is in Beijing's good books again
    Alibaba co-founder Jack Ma has appeared in his homeland after over a year away, visiting a school and sharing commentary on the state of AI.…

  • Ammo-maker says TikTok's datacenter site could deprive it of electricity
    Our future growth is challenged by the storage of cat videos
    Here's a conspiracy theory for you to consider: the war in Ukraine has shown that the West can't produce ammunition fast enough to sustain even that limited conflict. China noticed, and therefore had TikTok plan three energy-hungry datacenters close to an ammunition factory, threatening its electricity supply.…

  • APNIC backed off naming naughty nominees after injunction threat
    Code of conduct complaints were not publicized in case it disrupted voting
    The Asia Pacific Network Information Centre (APNIC), the regional internet registry for 56 nations, has revealed that it was threatened with an injunction that would have disrupted its elections if it named candidates found to have breached its election nominee code of conduct. Voters therefore went to the polls without knowing about findings of code breaches.…

  • President Biden kind of mostly bans commercial spyware from US govt
    Executive order has loopholes for Uncle Sam's snoop tools and American-made code
    US president Joe Biden on Monday issued an executive order on the "prohibition on use by the United States government of commercial spyware that poses risks to national security" – a title that is not quite as simple it seems.…

  • Introducing self-service SPDX SBOMs
    Following the precedent set by`Executive Order 14028, security and compliance teams increasingly request software bills of materials (SBOMs) to identify the open source components of their software projects, assess their vulnerability to emerging threats, and verify alignment with license policies. So, we asked ourselves, how do we make SBOMs easier to generate and share? Read [0]

    The post Introducing self-service SPDX SBOMs appeared first on


  • Intel Linux Kernel Optimizations Show Huge Benefit For High Core Count Servers
    Earlier this month I wrote about Intel engineers working on more big optimizations to the Linux kernel with a focus on enhancing the kernel9s performance at high core counts. The numbers shared then were very promising and since then I9ve had more time looking at the performance impact of Intel9s stellar software optimization work and its impact on real-world workloads. Here is a look at how Intel9s pending kernel optimization patches are a huge deal for today9s high core count servers.

  • AMD Releases HIP Ray Tracing 2.0
    AMD today published HIP Ray-Tracing 2.0 "HIP RT" as the newest version of their open-source ray-tracing library built for use with their latest-generation GPUs for leveraging hardware ray-tracing capabilities...

  • Trend Micro Uncovers Yet Another X.Org Server Vulnerability: CVE-2023-1393
    For over a decade now the X.Org Server has been seeing routine security disclosures in its massive codebase with some security researchers saying it's even worse than it looks and security researchers frequently finding multiple vulnerabilities at a time in the large and aging code-base that these days rarely sees new feature work. Today another disclosure was made by the folks with the Trend Micro Zero Day Initiative...

  • Ubuntu Cinnamon Becomes An Official Flavor For Ubuntu 23.04
    Since 2019 there has been Ubuntu Cinnamon as an unofficial remix of Ubuntu paired with Linux Mint's Cinnamon desktop environment. After the three years of progress, Ubuntu Cinnamon has now been granted an official status with next month's Ubuntu 23.04 "Lunar Lobster" release...

  • Fedora 38 Beta Performance Mostly Flat, Few Regressions
    For those curious how the performance of Fedora 38 is looking ahead of its official release at the end of April, here are some preliminary benchmarks looking at the performance of this leading-edge Linux distribution as of the Fedora 38 Beta milestone last week. On both Intel Core i9 13900K "Raptor Lake" and AMD Ryzen 9 7950X "Zen 4" desktop systems, the Fedora 37 performance was compared to that of Fedora 38 Beta.

  • QNX Support Restored For SDL3
    When SDL3 development kicked off last November for this open-source library that is widely used by cross-platform games and other software, QNX support was removed alongside other old targets. Just months later, the QNX platform support is being revived...

  • Intel Releases GPGMM v0.1 GPU Memory Management Library
    Intel has published v0.1 of its GPGMM software, the open-source General-Purpose GPU Memory Management Library. This library is intended to be used by modern software employing the Vulkan or D3D12 APIs for helping application developers deal with low-level video memory management...

  • Pending RADV Driver Change Leads To Much Lower System RAM Use For Some Games
    A pending change to the Mesa Radeon Vulkan driver "RADV" is leading to much lower system RAM use for some games that make use of many Vulkan Graphics Pipeline Libraries (GPL). The game causing this issue to be investigated was Valve's Dota 2 on RADV and is now seeing an 85% reduction in system RAM use by this open-source Radeon Linux driver...

  • Ubuntu Touch OTA-1 Focal Released For Ubuntu 20.04 LTS On Smartphones
    Ubuntu Touch as the community maintained version of Ubuntu Linux for smartphones and tablets has for years been frustratingly limited to Ubuntu 16.04 LTS as its base operating system for when Canonical had abandoned their smartphone ambitions. Today though that has finally changed with Ubuntu Touch OTA-1 Focal having been released that moves things forward to an Ubuntu 20.04 LTS base...

  • Intel Sapphire Rapids Performance With Google Cloud Compute Engine C3
    Back in October Google announced their Compute Engine C3 instances in private preview that featured 4th Gen Xeon Scalable "Sapphire Rapids" processors as well as making use of Google9s custom Intel Infrastructure Processing Unit (IPU). Since then, back in January, was the big Sapphire Rapids launch with the likes of the Xeon Platinum 8490H being released. Last month meanwhile Google promoted the C3 VMs to public preview state. The Sapphire Rapids C3 VMs remain in "public preview" from Google Cloud during which time there are no charges involved for the CPU costs. For those wondering about the core-for-core performance of Sapphire Rapids in Google Cloud, here are my initial benchmarks of the C3 series.

  • AmpereOne Sees Last Minute Compiler Tuning Ahead Of GCC 13
    Going back to late 2021 was the initial GCC compiler patch for "Ampere-1" for that next-gen AArch64 server processor while last year this successor to Ampere Altra (Max) was formally announced under the AmpereOne brand. That initial compiler support appeared in GCC 12 while ahead of the GCC 13 release in the coming weeks has been some last minute tuning for the AmpereOne cost table...

  • XWayland Lands Fix For At Least One Game Hanging It & Causing 100% CPU Usage
    While XWayland is in fairly good shape for enjoying both native and emulated games relying on X11 to run atop Wayland compositors for Linux gaming, occasionally different peculiar issues are uncovered. The most recent issue analyzed and addressed in XWayland Git is over the game Resident Evil 6 causing XWayland to hang and consume 100% of the CPU resources on launching that title...

  • OBS Studio Lands AV1 & HEVC RTMP Streaming Support
    In time for OBS Studio 29.1, the Veovera Software Organization non-profit has contributed support for AV1 and HEVC streaming via RTMP so that gamers and other creators can stream their content to the YouTube RTMP server using these newer video formats...

  • FreeBSD 13.2-RC5 Released With One Last Fix
    FreeBSD 13.2-RC4 was released this weekend while it's already been replaced by FreeBSD 13.2-RC5 to land one more fix prior to making the final release preparations on this next stable update to this BSD operating system...

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  • Twitter announces new API pricing, including a limited free tier for bots
    Twitter has finally confirmed some of the details and pricing for the new version of its API. The company had previously delayed the changes after confirming that it was banning third-party clients as part of a larger shakeup of its developer features.

    As expected, the company is maintaining a free tier with limited functionality, though it offers far less than its predecessor. Under the new free tier, which is aimed at bots and other “testing” purposes, accounts can post up to 1,500 tweets a month, but won’t be able to access any other featuires. That may offer a lifeline to some of Twitter’s famed bot accounts, but at about 50 tweets a day, may prove to be too limited for those that post more frequently.

    At $100 a month, the new “basic” tier offers a bit more: developers can post up to 3,000 tweets a month at the user level and up to 50,000 a month at the app level. It also offers a read limit of 10,000 tweets a month, which, again, is far less than what was previously offered.
    Meanwhile, an enterprise tier is meant for businesses that need a higher level of access, though details for that tier are still murky. According to Twitter’s developer website, the enterprise tier will include “commercial-level access that meets your and your customer9s specific needs” and other features. Businesses can apply for enterprise access, but the only pricing information Twitter has disclosed is that there will be "monthly subscription tiers." 

    It’s also unclear what will happen to researchers and academics who currently rely on Twitter’s API for their work. In a series of tweets, the company said it was “looking at new ways to continue serving this community” but didn’t elaborate. Wired previously reported the company had told some organizations API access could run as much as $42,000 a month, but that plan doesn9t seem to have materialized, at least not yet.

    The new details also mean that a lot of services using Twitter’s older APIs could soon stop working altogether. The company confirmed that its existing APIs, used by a vast number of developers, researchers and other services, would be deprecated within the next 30 days. “We recommend that you migrate to the new tiers as soon as possible for a smooth transition,” the company said. Though it’s unclear just how many developers will be willing to pay for stripped down versions of the APIs.
    This article originally appeared on Engadget at

  • Renewable power generation overtook coal in the US last year
    Renewables are already producing more energy than fossil fuels in Europe, and now the US is approaching that milestone. The US Energy Information Administration (EIA) has determined that renewable power generation overtook coal in 2022, with 4,090 million megawatt-hours coming from solar, wind, hydroelectric, biomass and geothermal technology. These green sources leapt past nuclear in 2021, but widened the gap last year. They have about 21 percent share combined.

    The shift came through the combination of increasing renewable capacity and coal9s years-long decline. Wind was the dominant source of clean electricity, with the capacity jumping from 133 gigawatts in 2021 to 141 gigawatts a year later. Hydro was second, followed by utility-level solar, biomass and geothermal. Coal dropped to 20 percent share due to both the closure of some plants and the reduced use of others. Nuclear has remained relatively steady, but the shutdown of Michigan9s Palisades powerplant saw it dip to 19 percent.

    It might not surprise you to hear which states dominated certain renewable energy sources. Sunny California was the leader in solar power generation with 26 percent of the output, while Texas had a similar slice of wind generation. Texas also has the largest shares of coal and natural gas, although its lead in those areas is only slight.

    Renewables weren9t the top power source in 2022 — that distinction went to natural gas, which claimed a 39 percent share. However, it9s evident that clean tech has a firm foothold in the US despite attempts to undermine it through regulation. We9d expect the trends to continue, too. President Biden9s administration has heavily promoted renewable electricity, including the approval of the first large offshore wind farm in the country, while the EIA expects coal use to shrink to 17 percent. Natural gas may retain a comfortable lead, but it now has a new chief rival.
    This article originally appeared on Engadget at

  • Lamborghini's plug-in hybrid supercar runs for a cool six miles in electric-only mode
    Luxury sports cars aren’t exactly known for being eco-conscious, but Lamborghini just announced the company’s first plug-in hybrid supercar. The Lamborghini Revuelto, which translates to “scrambled,” should satisfy anyone’s need for speed, so long as they don’t look too hard at the battery life.

    In other words, engaging this vehicle in all-electric mode won’t get you very far, just 6.2 miles from a full charge. That is likely not enough juice to get you to the grocer and back, but this is a hybrid vehicle not exactly intended for all-electric usage. With that said, the combustion engine charges the rather minuscule 3.8kWh battery on its own in just six minutes via regenerative braking on the front wheels, the company announced in a press release.

    Battery life isn’t the main reason people buy luxury sports cars (it probably doesn9t crack the top ten) so the engine here is designed for power, acceleration and max speeds. The relatively light engine (480 pounds) pumps out 814 horsepower at a blistering 9,250 rpm. This is a Lamborghini through and through, with a multitude of air intake ducts located throughout to increase airflow for the engine, resulting in a power level of 126 hp per liter. The company says this is the “highest output in the history of Lamborghini’s 12-cylinder engines.”

    The design is heavily influenced by aerospace engineering, with sculpted surfaces, pointed lines and hexagonal exhausts. Lamborghini also took design cues from its own past, like the vertically opening scissor doors from 1970s Countach models and the floating blade on the rear fender often associated with the Diablo line.
    Of course, the interior is outfitted with all kinds of tech-forward components, like a 12.3-inch digital cockpit with a large center display, an equally large 9-inch passenger-side display and plenty of affiliated infotainment options. This is also the first Lamborghini ever with an advanced driver-assist system. Finally, there is an associated smartphone and smartwatch app that monitors aspects of the car’s status, such as fuel level, battery, range and GPS location. This app even performs basic tasks remotely, like activating the horn, lights and locks.

    This is the first step in Lamborghini and parent company Volkswagen9s plans to release an all-electric luxury vehicle by 2030. However, the brand hopes to continue making combustion engines into the 2030s that run on synthetic fuel. The Lamborghini Revuelto ships later this year at the eye-watering price of $542,165, as reported by Automotive News Europe (requires a free sign-up to read.)
    This article originally appeared on Engadget at

  • Apple's WWDC 2023 begins June 5th
    Apple has set the dates for WWDC 2023. The company's developer conference will run between June 5th and June 9th. It's still in an online format despite the pandemic fading into the background, but there will be a "special experience" at Apple Park on the 5th for developers and students. The company isn't saying much about what to expect (does the graphic hint at a lens?), but this may be one of Apple's most important events in recent years.

    Rumors have swirled that Apple will finally debut its mixed reality headset at WWDC 2023. The device, potentially called Reality Pro or Reality One, is believed to be a stand-alone device with an M2 chip, dual 4K displays, advanced body tracking and controller-free input — you'd use hand gestures and Siri commands. While the hardware may be aimed at developers and professionals (with a possible $3,000 price tag), it could include health features, full-body avatars in FaceTime calls and wearable versions of many iPhone and iPad experiences. It might not ship until later in the year.

    Other announcements at WWDC 2023 may be more pedestrian. It's virtually certain that you'll see previews of iOS 17, macOS 14 and watchOS 10, among other platform updates. There may be service updates, too. While we wouldn't count on updates to Apple's existing hardware lineup, we wouldn't rule out introductions for some of the first M3-based Macs. The company did unveil the MacBook Air M2 at last year's conference, after all.

    If history is any indication, you should see beta versions of operating system updates soon after WWDC. Finished versions should arrive in the fall. As with past conferences, most of what you'll see is a sneak peek of what's coming in the months ahead.
    This article originally appeared on Engadget at

  • Apple's M2 Pro Mac mini is back to a record-low price at Amazon
    Apple9s latest Mac mini remains a hot item, but you can still find some savings. Amazon is once more selling the M2 Pro Mac mini at a best-ever price of $1,249, or $50 off. That9s a modest discount, but the tiny-but-powerful desktop has rarely been discounted in any form at Amazon. You can roll the savings into a mouse, keyboard or other must-have peripherals.

    The M2 Pro edition of the Mac mini is a great machine that fills a typically vacant spot in Apple9s lineup — it9s a powerful but relatively affordable "headless" desktop. The system is quick enough to handle serious media editing and multitasking duties, but still gives you the freedom to choose your own monitor. Throw in the abundance of ports and virtually silent operation (even under stress) and this may be the your ideal machine if you want some flexibility in your setup.

    This high-end Mac mini is still expensive, and you won9t find front-facing ports or an SD card reader like you get on the Mac Studio. And for many, this may be overkill — the standard M2 is often enough for everyday use while costing hundreds of dollars less. If you crave performance or extra ports, though, the M2 Pro version is a fine computer that won9t use much space on your desk.

    Follow @EngadgetDeals on Twitter and subscribe to the Engadget Deals newsletter for the latest tech deals and buying advice.
    This article originally appeared on Engadget at

  • 'The Last of Us Part I' for PC was a buggy mess at launch
    I love all things The Last of Us, so it pains me to report that the PC port released the game9s first patch, a hotfix for some of the stability issues. The company didn9t have a ton of details on the specifics, but it says that more updates will be coming soon. I spent an hour playing the first part of the game on the Steam Deck, and it feels a lot more solid than it did yesterday, though I still haven9t gotten to the most graphically intense sequences yet. Still, things seem to be moving in the right direction — playing on medium with the frame rate set to max out at 40fps, things ran pretty smoothly.
    A hotfix for The Last of Us Part I on PC went live earlier today, focusing primarily on stability and performance improvements. Patch notes are here:

    Our team is continuing to investigate known issues, and we will let you know as more updates are planned.
    — Naughty Dog (@Naughty_Dog) March 29, 2023
    It9s worth nothing that Sony didn9t provide reviews with a demo code for the game until launch day, something that often means the game is either being worked on right up until the last minute or the experience isn9t very good (or both). This made a bit nervous about how The Last of Us Part I would run, and it seems like my fears were well-founded.
    Photo by Nathan Ingraham / Engadget
    Developer Naughty Dog didn9t waste any time addressing the problems, tweeting out last night that they9re "actively investigating multiple issues" that players have reported. The company also has a "known issues" page running, which acknowledges the shader loading issue as well as a potential memory leak, older graphics drivers leading to instability, and the game being unable to boot despite systems that meet the minimum requirements.
    The Last of Us Part I PC players: we9ve heard your concerns, and our team is actively investigating multiple issues you9ve reported.

    We will continue to update you, but our team is prioritizing updates and will address issues in upcoming patches.
    — Naughty Dog (@Naughty_Dog) March 28, 2023
    A number of high-profile PlayStation games from Sony9s first-party studios have been ported to PC, including 20179s Horizon Zero Dawn and pretty serious issues at launch, as well. Since then, updates have made the games work much better, but it9s still a disappointing trend. 

    Even after delaying the game about a month from its original March 3rd date, things were clearly not ready to go. Sony likely wanted to capitalize on the popularity of the HBO series, which wrapped its first season earlier this month, but a delayed launch is probably better than a launch that no one can play. As of now, Naughty Dog hasn9t released an update for The Last of Us Part I, but we9ll be keeping an eye out for any fixes. I9ve been dreaming of having this game on-the-go since it was announced, so my fingers are crossed Naughty Dog can make it work on the Steam Deck — not to mention for the many people who want to play it on their powerful gaming PCs.

    Update, 3/29/23 3:25PM ET: Added details about the first patch that Naughty Dog just released to address performance issues.

    Update, 3/29/23 4:20PM ET: Added details about how the game plays on Steam Deck following the patch.
    This article originally appeared on Engadget at

  • Eco-friendly HP laser printer line promises to reduce energy use by 30 percent
    Old-school tech giant HP has just announced a refresh of its Color LaserJet printer line with an eye toward reducing both energy consumption and physical waste. The company promises that these printers reduce energy consumption by up to 27 percent, while the plastic packaging components have been reduced by 78 percent.

    The decrease in energy usage is thanks to the company’s proprietary TerraJet laser toner, which HP says is designed to offer maximum sustainability. The new HP TerraJet cartridges that accompany these printers offer a lower carbon footprint than predecessors but allow for a 20 percent increase in printable colors. HP also says these printers have been redesigned for speed, so expect a 25 percent uptick in tempo when making prints.

    These printers fall into two categories. The HP Color LaserJet 4200/4300 is designed for small businesses and remote workers. They offer a compact design (though not as small as some HP laser printers), two-sided color printing, two-sided color scanning, HP Wolf Security tools preconfigured out of the box and the HP Smart Admin Dashboard for making adjustments on-the-fly.

    The HP Color LaserJet Enterprise 5000/6000 series, on the other hand, is for busy office environments with massive daily printing needs. To that end, you can actually perform some light editing to printable documents right from the device itself, without a PC. The touchscreen and analog controls let you highlight, redact, and markup, and HP says these printers offer the “fastest A4 laserjet speeds” around.
    The HP LaserJet Enterprise 5700dn model.HP
    These enterprise-focused printers also include built-in HP Wolf Security protocols and an upgraded document digitization toolset that automatically reduces misfeeds, resulting in greater accuracy when performing large batch scans.

    HP says the 4200/4300 launches on April 1st in North America with global availability by the summer, with prices for the most expensive configuration maxing out at $700. The 5000/6000 enterprise printers also launch on April 1st in North America, with a phased global rollout starting in Asia throughout the month. These printers start at around $1,050.
    This article originally appeared on Engadget at

  • Kia's EV9 electric SUV will offer Level 3 autonomy and a 336-mile range
    Kia is finally sharing some specs for the EV9 electric SUV, and they may be good news for families planning road trips. The three-row EV will now include Level 3 self-driving (that is, the car drives itself in some situations but may need you to take over) in some countries when you spring for the GT-line trim. The planned Highway Driving Pilot will use LiDAR and other sensors to let you “take a break” from driving, where conditions allow.

    The EV9 might also deliver more range than you9d expect for an SUV this size. Kia claims the RWD Long Range model with a 99.8kWh battery will offer up to 336 miles of range, based on WLTP testing. We9d expect a more conservative estimate from the US9 Environmental Protection Agency, but that9s still a very healthy figure for this vehicle class. There will also be an AWD variant with the same battery as well as 76.1kWh RWD Standard Range base configuration. The 800V charging architecture should give the EV about 149 miles of range in 15 minutes, and vehicle-to-load tech lets you power camping gear and laptops.

    Performance can be relatively brisk depending on the model. The RWD Long Range with a 150kW motor will be the slowest-accelerating model with a 0-62MPH time of 9.4 seconds, but the Standard Range edition with a 160kW motor will manage that run in 8.2 seconds. Opt for the AWD model and you9ll get a dual-motor 283kW powerplant that can normally hit 62MPH in six seconds (more on that in a moment).

    Like it or not, Kia is joining the ranks of automakers locking car features behind digital purchases. You9ll need to buy items from the company9s Connect Store to enhance the pattern lighting on the grille, and even to add a "Boost" that delivers extra torque for a 0-62MPH dash in 5.3 seconds. Yes, you9ll have to pay for features your EV9 can technically handle. You will get a number of driver aids and conveniences, including hands-off parking and navigation-based "Smart Cruise Control." This will be the first Kia to support ultra-wide band digital keys, so you won9t have to take out your conventional key to step inside.

    Kia hasn9t yet divulged pricing for the EV9. The machine will go on sale in some countries sometime in the second half of the year, with South Korean pre-orders starting this spring. It9s safe to presume the SUV will sell for more than the EV6 crossover. Not that this will necessarily be a problem for the brand. There are few three-row electric SUVs, and those that exist (such as the Tesla Model X) are likely more expensive.
    This article originally appeared on Engadget at

  • Sony's 12-megapixel full-frame ZV-E1 is a low-light vlogging beast
    Sony has unveiled its latest, and by far greatest vlogging camera to date, the full-frame ZV-E1. Equipped with the same backside-illuminated (BSI) 12-megapixel sensor as the A7S III, it promises excellent low-light performance, 4K at up to 120p and a host of new AI features like auto framing. The $2,200 price tag also makes it enticing for vloggers as it offers features found on the $3,500 A7S III for considerably less money.

    Key among those are the excellent video specs. The full-frame sensor lets you significantly blur the background so subjects stand out more than with cameras using smaller APS-C or Micro Four Thirds sensors. And like the A7S III, the ZV-E1 gives you 4K at 24/30/60/120 fps, using a full-pixel readout with no binning in all modes. It also offers capture in easy-to-edit All-I modes with data rates up to 600Mbps. 
    Photo by Sam Rutherford/Engadget
    10-bit 4:2:2 recording is available with S-Log-3/S-Gamut3.Cine log modes, delivering up to 15 stops of dynamic range, Sony claims. And the 12-megapixel BSI sensor has an ISO range up to 409,600 expanded (80-102400 in normal modes), the best high ISO performance in the Alpha series. That opens up a lot of interesting creative opportunities, as you can shoot in near pitch-black conditions. 

    The ZV-E1 is Sony9s first full-frame camera with a vlogging-style body, so it lacks the large grip and generous controls seen on other A-series models. In exchange, it9s much smaller and lighter than those models, weighing in at just 483 grams, compared to 699 grams for the A7S III. It9s even lighter (and smaller) than the A7C, but uses the same Z-batteries as larger Sony models, letting you capture up to 570 shots or record 4K 60p video for 95 minutes (however, 4K 60p is temperature-limited to approximately 30 minutes).
    Photo by Sam Rutherford/Engadget
    It has a single rear dial, with the front dial replaced by a motor zoom control. There are just a few other controls (three programmable buttons, a Fn button and Sony9s usual D-Pad), along with a Still/Movie/S&Q switch, product showcase button, and background defocus button. It also has a tally light that can be seen from the front and top.

    For other settings, and functions like focus, you have to use the touchscreen. Luckily it9s a fully articulating display that allows easy self-shooting or high/low angle framing. Sony has also adopted the A7R V9s relatively intuitive menu system that places common settings on one screen and makes it relatively easy to find more advanced functions.  

    Also missing is an electronic viewfinder, so the only way to see your subject is via the touchscreen or an external monitor. We9ve seen the same thing on all its other ZV-series vlogging cameras so it9s no surprise, but it9s a bit jarring to see such a high-spec camera without an EVF.
    Photo by Sam Rutherford/Engadget
    Otherwise, though, ZV-E1 actually adds some features not found on other Sony cameras. To start with, it offers 5-axis in-body stabilization, with a new "Active" optical mode that9s supposed to boost shake reduction while walking. And if that9s not enough, the "Dynamic Active" mode adds extra smoothing for rapid movements in exchange for some extra cropping. "Combined with a wide-angle lens, hand-held shooting is possible even in fast walking scenes that would otherwise be difficult without the use of a gimbal," Sony claims.

    Another new feature is the AI-based auto framing mode that should be incredibly handy for solo creators. Using subject recognition tech, it automatically crops the frame to keep the subject in a prominent position, even though the camera may be fixed on a tripod. Using the feature, you can select a small, medium or large crop, have it track you quickly or slowly, auto start based on subject recognition or subject selection, and switch between the cropped and full angle after 15 or 30 seconds. It can even record two types of images at once, capturing the full image to an HDMI output and the cropped version to an internal memory card. 
    Photo by Sam Rutherford/Engadget
    Other AI tricks including a framing stabilizer that uses subject recognition tech to crop in to the subject and keeps them stable when you9re walking beside them. "Multiple face recognition" automatically reduces bokeh when a second face is detected so both subjects stay in focus. And as with other Sony vlogging models, it has a bokeh switch that automatically defocuses the background, along with a "product showcase" button that lets the camera instantly focus on an object put in front of the camera. 

    As with other recent Sony models, the ZV-E1 has a variety of subject recognition modes besides humans, including animal, bird, car/train, airplane and insect. It includes the focus breathing compensation feature first seen on the A7 IV that digitally compensates for any zooming when the focus changes from one subject to another. It also offers the focus map and AF assist seen on recent models, along with adjustments for the AF transition speed. 
    Photo by Sam Rutherford/Engadget
    On the audio front, the ZV-E1 has a built-in 3-capsule mic that can change directionality depending on the situation. For instance, if a human subject is recognized, the mic direction changes to "front," but if there9s no subject it defaults to "all directions." It comes with a windscreen, and if you9d rather using your own mic, there9s a 3.5mm headphone jack and digital audio interface on the hotshoe. 

    Other features include UVC/UAC webcam capability, with support for up to 4K 30p video, besting most other Sony models. It also comes with a headphone port, a single SD UHS-II card slot, a microHDMI output and USB-C. Finally, it9s a decent photo camera as well, shooting 12-megapixel RAW photos at up to 10fps — but there9s no mechanical shutter, of course. 

    As mentioned, the ZV-E1 is priced at $2,200 for the body only, or $2,500 in a kit with the SEL 28-60mm zoom. It goes on pre-order tomorrow, with shipping set to start in early April — stay tuned for a full review.
    This article originally appeared on Engadget at

  • The best monitors for 2023
    Computer monitors keep evolving rapidly, with new technology like OLED Flex, QD-OLED and built-in smart platforms just in the last year alone. That’s on top of big improvements in things like color accuracy, image quality, size and resolution.

    The choice is nice but overwhelming, as there are a lot of products in this market and a lot of features. Buyers looking for computer monitors now have to consider things like HDR, brightness, color accuracy, type of display technology, input lag and more. And then there are the usual considerations like size, adjustability, inputs and so on.

    To help you with all that, we’ve researched the latest models for all kinds of markets, whether you’re a gamer, business user or content creator. Read our buying guide below to find out which is the best computer monitor for you and, especially, your budget.
    The basics'Panel type
    The cheapest monitors are still TN (twisted nematic), which are strictly for gaming or office use. VA (vertical alignment) monitors are also relatively cheap, while offering good brightness and a high contrast ratio. However, content creators will probably want an IPS (in-plane switching) LCD display that delivers better color accuracy, image quality and viewing angles.

    If maximum brightness is important, a quantum dot LCD display is the way to go — those are typically found in larger displays. OLED monitors are now available and offer the best blacks and color reproduction, but they lack the brightness of LED or quantum dot displays. Plus, they cost a lot. The latest type of OLED monitor, called QD-OLED from Samsung, just came out in 2022. The most notable advantage is that it can get a lot brighter, with monitors shown at CES 2022 hitting up to 1,000 nits of peak brightness.

    MiniLEDs are now widely used in high-end displays. They’re similar to quantum dot tech, but as the name suggests, it uses smaller LED diodes that are just 0.2mm in diameter. As such, manufacturers can pack in up to three times more LEDs with more local dimming zones, delivering deeper blacks and better contrast.
    Screen size, resolution and display format
    In this day and age, screen size rules. Where 24-inch displays used to be more or less standard (and can still be useful for basic computing), 27-, 32-, 34- and even 42-inch displays have become popular for entertainment, content creation and even gaming these days.

    Nearly every monitor used to be 16:9, but it’s now possible to find 16:10 and other more exotic display shapes. On the gaming and entertainment side, we’re also seeing curved and ultrawide monitors with aspect ratios like 21:9. If you do decide to buy an ultrawide display, however, keep in mind that a 30-inch 21:9 model is the same height as a 24-inch monitor, so you might end up with a smaller display than you expected. As a rule of thumb, add 25 percent to the size of a 21:9 monitor to get the vertical height you’d expect from a model with a 16:9 aspect ratio.

    A 4K monitor is nearly a must for content creators, and some folks are even going for 5K or all the way up to 8K. Keep in mind, though, that you’ll need a pretty powerful computer to drive all those pixels. And 4K resolution should be paired with a screen size of 27 inches and up, or you won’t notice much difference between 1440p. At the same time, I wouldn’t get a model larger than 27 inches unless it’s 4K, as you’ll start to see pixelation if you’re working up close to the display.

    One new category to consider is portable monitors designed to be carried and used with laptops. Those typically come in 1080p resolutions and sizes from 13-15 inches. They usually have a lightweight kickstand-type support that folds up to keep things compact.
    HDR is the buzzy monitor feature to have these days, as it adds vibrancy to entertainment and gaming – but be careful before jumping in. Some monitors that claim HDR on the marketing materials don’t even conform to a base standard. To be sure that a display at least meets minimum HDR specs, you’ll want to choose one with a DisplayHDR rating with each tier representing maximum brightness in nits.

    However, the lowest DisplayHDR 400 and 500 tiers may disappoint you with a lack of brightness, washed out blacks and mediocre color reproduction. If you can afford it, the best monitor to choose is a model with DisplayHDR 600, 1000 or True Black 400, True Black 500 and True Black 600. The True Black settings are designed primarily for OLED models, with maximum black levels at .0005 nits.

    Where televisions typically offer HDR10 and Dolby Vision or HDR10+, most PC monitors only support the HDR10 standard, other than a few (very expensive) models. That doesn’t matter much for content creation or gaming, but HDR streaming on Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and other services won’t look quite as punchy. In addition, most models supporting HDR600 (and up) are gaming monitors, rather than content creation monitors – with a few exceptions. 
    Refresh rate
    Refresh rate is a key feature, particularly on gaming monitors. A bare minimum nowadays is 60Hz, and 80Hz and higher refresh rates are much easier on the eyes. However, most 4K displays top out at 60Hz with some rare exceptions and the HDMI 2.0 spec only supports 4K at 60Hz, so you’d need at least DisplayPort 1.4 (4K at 120Hz) or HDMI 2.1. The latter is now available on a number of monitors, particularly gaming displays. However, it’s only supported on the latest NVIDIA RTX 3000- and 4000-series, AMD RX 6000-series GPUs.
    There are essentially three types of modern display inputs: Thunderbolt, DisplayPort and HDMI. Most monitors built for PCs come with the latter two, while a select few (typically built for Macs) will use Thunderbolt. To add to the confusion, USB-C ports may be Thunderbolt 3 and by extension, DisplayPort compatible, so you may need a USB-C to Thunderbolt or DisplayPort cable adapter depending on your display.
    Color bit depth
    Serious content creators should consider a more costly 10-bit monitor that can display billions of colors. If budget is an issue, you can go for an 8-bit panel that can fake billions of colors via dithering (often spec’d as “8-bit + FRC”). For entertainment or business purposes, a regular 8-bit monitor that can display millions of colors will be fine.
    Color gamut
    The other aspect of color is the gamut. That expresses the range of colors that can be reproduced and not just the number of colors. Most good monitors these days can cover the sRGB and Rec.709 gamuts (designed for photos and video respectively). For more demanding work, though, you’ll want one that can reproduce more demanding modern gamuts like AdobeRGB, DCI-P3 and Rec.2020 gamuts, which encompass a wider range of colors. The latter two are often used for film projection and HDR, respectively.
    Console gaming
    Both the Xbox Series X and Sony’s PS5 can handle 4K 120Hz HDR gaming, so if you’re into resolution over pure speed, you’ll want a monitor that can keep up. 4K resolution, HDR and at least 120Hz is the minimum starting point, but fortunately there are 27-inch displays with those specs starting at well under $1,000.
    Pricing and parts shortages
    Though the pandemic has eased, monitor supply is still a bit tighter than pre-pandemic levels due to supply and demand issues. To that end, you may have trouble finding monitors at Amazon, B&H or elsewhere for the suggested retail price. For our guide below, we’re basing our picks on the MSRP, as long as the street price doesn’t exceed that by more than $25.
    Best monitors under $200
    'Samsung T35F

    The best budget monitor with a balance of size, refresh rate and color accuracy is Samsung’s 27-inch 1080p T35F. It’s good for business or light gaming and content work, thanks to the IPS panel and 75Hz refresh rate. Plus, it’s fairly attractive and modern looking. There are some things you don’t get at that price, of course – it can only tilt and has an HDMI 1.4 connection.
    LG 24GL600F
    If you’re fine with a smaller display and are more into gaming, another solid option is LG’s 24-inch 24GL600F. It offers a high refresh rate of 144Hz with AMD FreeSync support, a 1ms response time and low input lag. You also get HDMI and DisplayPort inputs, but like the T35F, there’s no height adjustment.
    Buy LG 24GL600F at Amazon - $200Best monitors under $400'HP U28 4K HDR Monitor

    The 28-inch HP U28 4K HDR monitor is a great all around choice, especially for content creators. The 60Hz IPS panel and factory calibration delivers excellent color accuracy and it’s a nice size for creative or business work. It comes with DisplayPort, HDMI and three USB 3.0 ports, along with a USB-C port with 65W of charging for a laptop or tablet. And it’s easy to set just right, thanks to height, swivel and pivot adjustment.
    Gigabyte G27QC
    If gaming is more your thing, the $300 Gigabyte G27QC is a top pick. The 27-inch, 1440p curved monitor has an ideal size and resolution for gaming, and it has a quick 165Hz refresh rate and 1ms response time. You can connect via HDMI 2.0 or DisplayPort 1.2 connections and get HDR support – albeit, without DisplayHDR certification.
    Buy Gigabyte G27QC at Amazon - $300BenQ 27-inch QHD HDR Monitor
    The $400 BenQ 27-inch 2K QHD HDR model is ideal for creative work, particularly photo editing and graphic design. While resolution is limited to 1440p, it covers 100 percent of the sRGB color gamut with a “Delta E” accuracy value of less than 3 for consistent color performance. You also get height, pivot and swivel adjustment (a full 90 degrees), with HDMI 2.0, DisplayPort 1.4 and USB-C daisy chaining and 65W power delivery.
    Buy 27-inch BenQ QHD monitor at Amazon - $400Best monitors under $500
    'LG 32UN650-W

    The 32-inch LG 32UN650-W is a great 4K monitor for entertainment, creative chores and gaming. The 31.5-inch, 60Hz IPS panel covers an excellent 95 percent of the DCI-P3 gamut with 10-bit color, but also supports AMD FreeSync for gaming. It also supports HDR, albeit with just 350 nits of maximum brightness. It has HDMI 2.0 and DisplayPort 1.4 ports, tilt and height adjustments and even built-in speakers.
    ASUS ROG Swift PG259QN
    Sometimes speed rules over size and resolution, and the 24.5-inch 1080p ASUS ROG Swift PG256QN is fast. It maxes out at a 360Hz refresh rate (with NVIDIA G-Sync support) and 1ms GtG response time. At the same time, you get 1.07 billion colors with HDR support (up to 400 nits brightness) so you can see your enemies quickly and clearly. Other niceties of this best monitor pick include a fully adjustable stand, ASUS’s GamePlus Hotkey Enhancements and a large heatsink.
    Buy ASUS ROG Swift monitor at Amazon - $499Gigabyte M28U
    Gigabyte’s M28U 28-inch 144Hz 4K gaming monitor sure does a lot. It has an IPS panel with a 2ms (MPRT) response time, 94 percent DCI-P3 coverage, DisplayHDR 400 certification, 2 HDMI 2.1 ports and FreeSync Premium Pro support. It comes in a little bit more expensive than $500, but we've often seen it on sale for less.
    Buy Gigabyte M28U at Amazon - $649Best monitors under $1,000ViewSonic ColorPro VP2786-4K

    In this price range you can have resolution, color accuracy or brightness, but not all three. The one with the best balance is ViewSonic’s $1,000 ColorPro VP2786 27-inch 4K HDR Monitor. The true 10-bit IPS panel covers 98 percent of the DCI-P3 color palette with an excellent Delta

  • Tech leaders and AI experts demand a six-month pause on 'out-of-control' AI experiments
    An open letter signed by tech leaders and prominent AI researchers has called for AI labs and companies to "immediately pause" their work. Signatories like Steve Wozniak and Elon Musk agree risks warrant a minimum six month break from producing technology beyond GPT-4 to enjoy existing AI systems, allow people to adjust and ensure they are benefiting everyone. The letter adds that care and forethought are necessary to ensure the safety of AI systems — but are being ignored.

    The reference toGPT-4, a model by OpenAI that can respond with text to written or visual messages, comes as companies race to build complex chat systems that utilize the technology. Microsoft, for example, recently confirmed that its revamped Bing search engine has been powered by the GPT-4 model for over seven weeks, while Google recently debuted Bard, its own generative AI system powered by LaMDA. Uneasiness around AI has long circulated, but the apparent race to deploy the most advanced AI technology first has drawn more urgent concerns.

    "Unfortunately, this level of planning and management is not happening, even though recent months have seen AI labs locked in an out-of-control race to develop and deploy ever more powerful digital minds that no one – not even their creators – can understand, predict, or reliably control," the letter states. 

    The concerned letter was published by the Future of Life Institute (FLI), an organization dedicated to minimizing the risks and misuse of new technology. Musk previously donated $10 million to FLI for use in studies about AI safety. In addition to him and Wozniak, signatories include a slew of global AI leaders, such as Center for AI and Digital Policy president Marc Rotenberg, MIT physicist and Future of Life Institute president Max Tegmark, and author Yuval Noah Harari. Harari also co-wrote an 2022 survey of over 700 machine learning researchers, in which nearly half of participants stated there's a 10 percent chance of an "extremely bad outcome" from AI, including human extinction. When asked about safety in AI research, 68 percent of researchers said more or much more should be done. 

    Anyone who shares concerns about the speed and safety of AI production is welcome to add their name to the letter. However, new names are not necessarily verified so any notable additions after the initial publication are potentially fake. 
    This article originally appeared on Engadget at

  • Logitech's Zone Learn headset for kids has swappable ear pads and wires
    Logitech has launched a kid-friendly version of its Zone headset called Zone Learn, specifically designed for their educational needs. While it was created to be durable like many other devices for children — it's even supposed to be "chew-resistant" — the company also made it easy to replace the parts that typically give out or get damaged for headsets first. Specifically, Logitech made it possible to swap its ear pads and cables, not just so schools can replace them if they get frayed or destroyed, but also so that they can choose between over-ear and on-ear pads, as well as between 3.5 mm aux, USB-A and USB-C cables, depending on what they need. 

    The over-ear option offers more noise isolation, while on-ear provides more environmental awareness. Meanwhile, the cable options will allow educators to use the headset with different types of devices. Logitech says Zone Learn's audio drivers are tuned for voice clarity rather than for music, since it's optimized for lessons that involve speaking, such as for students learning a new language. It's also equipped with a boom mic that has a 120-degree swivel for lessons that require students to interact with the class. 

    Zone Learn will be available around the world this spring for prices starting at $35. Logitech will also release a package with an over-ear pad model, a 3.5mm aux and a USB-C cable in the early summer for $40. 
    This article originally appeared on Engadget at

  • Google unveils AI-powered planning tools to help beat climate change's extreme heat
    With extreme weather events regularly flooding our coastal cities and burning out our rural communities, Google in its magnanimity has developed a new set of online tools that civil servants and community organizers alike can use in their efforts to stave off climate change-induced catastrophe.

    Google already pushes extreme weather alerts to users in affected locations, providing helpful, easy-to-understand information about the event through the Search page — whether its a winter storm warning, flood advisories, tornado warnings, or what have you. The company has now added extreme heat alerts to that list. Googling details on the event will return everything from the predicted start and end dates of the heatwave to medical issues to be aware of during it and how to mitigate their impacts. The company is partnering with the Global Heat Health Information Network (GHHIN) to ensure that the information provided is both accurate and applicable. 
    It9s a lot easier to keep the citizenry comfortable in hot weather if the cities themselves aren9t sweltering, but our love affair with urban concrete has not been amenable to that goal. That9s why Google has developed Tree Canopy, a feature within the company9s Environmental Insights Explorer app, which "combines AI and aerial imagery so cities can understand their current tree coverage and better plan urban forestry initiatives," per Wednesday9s release.

    Tree Canopy is already in use in more than a dozen cities but, with Wednesday9s announcement, the program will be drastically expanding, out to nearly 350 cities around the world including Atlanta, Sydney, Lisbon and Paris. Google also offers a similarly-designed AI to help plan the installation of "cool roofs" which reflect heat from the sun rather than absorb it like today9s tar paper roofs do.
    This article originally appeared on Engadget at

  • Shark's self-emptying robot vacuum is 50 percent off
    If you dread having to vacuum — who doesn't? — you may want to consider investing in a robot model to do it for you. While many options come with a high price tag, the self-emptying Shark RV1001AE IQ Robot is currently half off, down from $600 to $300. The steep price drop makes a big difference if you've been on the fence about investing in a robovac

    Here's what you need to know if you're considering taking the plunge. The vacuum works with the Shark app or through your Google Assistant or Amazon Alexa. You can schedule cleanings or tell the Shark IQ Robot which areas to clean in the moment. It maps each room while moving through your home to give you the option to select specific spaces to be vacuumed. 

    The self-cleaning vacuum goes row by row in each room, ensuring it hits every spot. It's equipped to handle hair (human or pet) without it getting wrapped around the suction, and works on carpets or floors. It also has a self-emptying base that holds 45 days of dirt and whatever else it cleans up. 

    Once done cleaning, the vacuum brings itself back to its dock and starts recharging. All you need to do is put your feet up when it comes nearby and let it do its work. 

    If you're looking for something with a longer capacity, the Shark AV2511AE AI Ultra Robot Vacuum holds up to 60 days worth of debris. It's currently discounted 17 percent, from $600 to $500. While many previous Shark robot vacuum sales have lasted only a day, it's not clear how long these discounts will be available.

    Follow @EngadgetDeals on Twitter and subscribe to the Engadget Deals newsletter for the latest tech deals and buying advice.
    This article originally appeared on Engadget at

  • Lucid Motors is laying off 1,300 workers to reduce expenses
    By the end of this week, 1,300 people who work for Lucid Motors will know they9re going to lose their jobs. The luxury electric vehicle maker has notified (PDF) the US Securities and Exchange Commission in a filing that it9s laying off approximately 18 percent of its workforce. Lucid said it9s cutting jobs to reduce operating expenses "in response to evolving business needs and productivity improvements" and that it intends to complete this restructuring plan by the end of the second quarter this year. 

    Lucid CEO Peter Rawlinson told employees in a memo that the job cuts will affect both employees and contractors. In the US, nearly every division will be hit by reductions, and some executives are even included in the list of personnel the company is laying off. The EV-maker implemented other cost-cutting measures, such as reviewing its non-critical spending, after announcing its 2022 earnings results in February. But apparently, those measures weren9t enough for the company to achieve its objectives. 

    While Lucid experienced a sharp increase in revenue year-over-year — it had only just started the Air sedan9s production in late 2021 — it still fell short of analyst forecasts. In addition, although its production goal (14,000 EVs) for 2023 is double last year9s figures, it9s much lower than the 21,000 units experts had expected. As price cuts by Tesla and the availability of affordable EVs from traditional automakers had lessened demand for vehicles from startups like Lucid. Rivian, another EV startup, is similarly affected and announced that it was going to reduce its workforce by six percent in February. 

    Lucid said in its filing that the layoffs will cost the company $24 million to $30 million, which will be spent on severance payments, company-paid health insurance and stock-based compensation for the affected workers. Despite its cost-cutting measures, Lucid still intends to expand globally and to continue developing more models, including the three-row Gravity electric SUV that it plans to release in 2024. 
    This article originally appeared on Engadget at

  • Google found to have violated order to save chat evidence in Epic antitrust case
    A federal judge has ruled that Google violated a court order requiring it to preserve employee chat messages relevant to Epic9s antitrust case, according to separate filing by the Department of Justice over the same complaint, the agency explained that the tech giant9s internal chatroom, which is used to discuss "substantive and sensitive business," is set to delete chat messages within 24 hours by default. The agency expected Google to change its chat history setting in 2019 when it "reasonably anticipated [the] litigation," but it still allegedly left the decision to individual employees. 

    Epic Games, to support its case, recently submitted exhibits to show how Google employees tend to switch off chat history. In one example from 2021, Google CEO Sundar Pichai allegedly wrote: "...also can we change the setting of this group to history off." He attempted to delete that message a few seconds later, according to the filing. Google employees also reportedly switch off chat histories when discussing topics, such as revenue sharing and mobile app distribution agreements, as well as a project that involves changing commission rates for Google Play. 

    In a statement, a Google spokesperson said the company has worked with Epic and investigators over the years and has handed over millions of documents: "Our teams have conscientiously worked, for years, to respond to Epic and the state AGs’ discovery requests and we have produced over three million documents, including thousands of chats. We9ll continue to show the court how choice, security, and openness are built into Android and Google Play," they said. 

    The judge will hold further proceedings to finalize the sanctions Google must face. Donato said he9d like to see the evidence available "at the end of fact discovery," so that Epic would be better positioned to "tell the Court what might have been lost in the Chat communications."
    This article originally appeared on Engadget at

  • Spotify's Niche Mixes let you generate personalized playlists for almost anything
    Spotify already offers a host of personalized playlists, and now the company is giving users even more control over the generation of those mixes. Building on the mood, decades and genre playlists the platform debuted in 2021, Spotify today introduced Niche Mixes, a feature the company says combines all of its personalized playlists “in a playful way.”

    In short, you can now prompt Spotify to create an algorithmically generated mix for almost any mood or genre. To do so, navigate over to Spotify’s search bar and type the activity you want the app to soundtrack for you and add “mix” to the end. You can get pretty creative. I asked Spotify to create a witch house playlist for me, followed by one featuring relaxing videogame soundtracks. In both cases, Spotify obliged and did a pretty good job of selecting appropriate tracks. That said, you9ll sometimes run into situations where Spotify won9t produce an exact match for the mix you want. For example, I asked it to create a "dubstep work mix," only to get a workout playlist instead.   

    As with the company’s other personalized mixes, you can expect each playlist to feature a mixture of familiar songs alongside tracks ones you may not have heard before. Niche mixes are available to today to free and Premium users who search in English.
    This article originally appeared on Engadget at

  • Lockheed Martin is building a Moon-to-Earth satellite communications network
    If humanity is going to have a long-term presence on the Moon, it9s going to need reliable communications — and Lockheed Martin thinks it can provide that link. The company has created a spinoff devoted to lunar infrastructure, Crescent Space, whose first project is a Moon-to-Earth satellite network. Parsec, as it9s called, uses a constellation of small lunar satellites to provide a non-stop connection between astronauts, their equipment and the people back home. The system will also provide navigation help.

    The technology should help explorers keep in touch, and assist with spacecraft course changes. As Lockheed Martin explains, though, it could prove vital to those on lunar soil. Parsec9s nodes create a lunar equivalent to GPS, giving astronauts their exact positions and directions back to base. A rover crew might know how to return home without driving into a dangerous crater, for instance.

    Crescent9s first Parsec nodes should be operational by 2025, with Lockheed Martin providing the satellites. And before you ask: yes, the company is clearly hoping for some big customers. CEO Joe Landon (formerly a Lockheed Martin Space VP) claims Crescent is "well positioned" to support NASA9s Artemis Moon landings and other exploratory missions.

    The startup may seem premature when NASA9s Artemis program won9t even conduct a lunar flyby until late 2024, and a landing at the end of 2025. However, there9s already a clear race to the Moon that includes national efforts from the US and China as well as private projects like SpaceX9s lunar tourism. Crescent could help Lockheed Martin profit from that rush without disrupting its existing businesses.
    This article originally appeared on Engadget at

  • Microsoft to reportedly focus on security and AI in next version of Windows
    Microsoft is working on a new “modern” version of Windows with better security and faster updates, according toWindows Central. The initiative, called CorePC, would allow Windows to scale better for different devices while still supporting legacy apps.

    CorePC would aim for many of the same goals as the scrapped Windows Core OS (including the also canceled Windows 10X), which Microsoft billed as a modular modernization of its OS. CorePC would use “state separation” and split Windows into multiple partitions, similar to iOS and Android. This could make it harder for malware to infect the system while making updates faster.

    “The current version of Windows is not a state-separated platform, meaning the entire system is installed into a single writable partition,” explains Windows Central. “System files, user data, and program files are all stored in the same place. CorePC splits up the OS into multiple partitions, which is key to enabling faster OS updates. State separation also enables faster and more reliable system reset functionality, which is important for Chromebook compete devices in the education sector.”

    CorePC would let Microsoft offer various editions of Windows for different hardware, supporting specific features and apps for each. For example, one educationally focused variant could have a light footprint like ChromeOS, running only the Edge browser, web apps, Office and emulated Android apps. Conversely, CorePC could also offer full-fledged versions of Windows that support all the current features and capabilities of the modern Windows 11 desktop. (A “Neon” compatibility layer would let the OS support legacy Windows apps.)

    The company is also reportedly working on a version of CorePC to rival Apple Silicon, which the iPhone maker began shipping in new Macs more than two years ago. Microsoft’s “silicon-optimized” variant would enhance the operating system’s performance and capabilities when tied to specific hardware (like, theoretically, Surface devices running a particular class of chips).

    Finally, Microsoft is (unsurprisingly) baking AI into the new project. Its plans include using artificial intelligence to analyze on-screen content and provide appropriate contextual cues. It sounds like a system-wide extension of the AI capabilities in upcoming versions of Office.

    As for when you can get your hands on it, Microsoft is reportedly aiming to use CorePC for the next major version of Windows (presumably “Windows 12”), scheduled for 2024. But, of course, the company’s alleged plans could change between now and then.
    This article originally appeared on Engadget at

  • E-book library app OverDrive is shutting down on May 1st
    OverDrive, the service you can use to borrow ebooks, audiobooks and other digital media from your local library, school or university, is shutting down. In a blog post spotted by announced last week it would shutter the app on May 1st, 2023. The company first shared it was planning to sunset OverDrive in 2021, revealing at the time that it would delist the service from app stores in February 2022.

    The shutdown represents an effort by OverDrive to move the majority of its users over to its newer Libby app. The two services have existed alongside one another since Overdrive introduced Libby in 2017, though there’s little reason to use the older app. Libby offers a handful of features that aren’t available on OverDrive, including, most notably, support for multiple library cards, a unified bookshelf for all your loans and holds and Apple CarPlay support.

    If you use OverDrive to enjoy books on your e-reader, you’re probably wondering how the shutdown will affect your Kindle or Kobo. Amazon did not immediately respond to Engadget’s request for information on how it plans to handle the transition. However, most signs point to the shutdown being a minor inconvenience for users who haven’t already moved to Libby. In the US, you can send most books you find on Libby to your Kindle device. Moreover, if you’re still using OverDrive, you can sync your wish lists to Libby. As for Kobo devices, a Rakuten spokesperson spokesperson explained that the switch from OverDrive to Libby will have "no effect on the library browsing, borrowing and reading experience on Kobo e-readers." Engadget will update this article once there’s more to know.

    Update: This article has been updated after publishing to include a quote from Rakuten about the impact of OverDrive9s shutdown on Kobo devices.
    This article originally appeared on Engadget at


  • A brief history of APFS in honour of its fifth birthday
    This article is a year old, but I came across it and want to highlight it anyway. On 27 March 2017, Apple made one of its biggest corporate gambles. When it rolled out iOS 10.3 that day, the installer silently converted the storage in each iPhone and iPad to the first release of Apple’s new file system, APFS. Had a significant percentage of conversions gone wrong, Apple would have had a disaster on its hands, particularly as it didn’t admit to doing this until WWDC just over two months later, when it announced that APFS was coming to macOS 10.13 High Sierra that September. The conversion of god knows how many iPhones and iPads to APFS, entirely silently, is one of those moments where Apple really flexed its engineering muscle. Since file systems are a bit of an archaic topic these days, I find that Apple really isnt getting the recognition it deserves for this silent migration to APFS.

  • Understanding immutable Linux OS: benefits, architecture, and challenges
    For years, the traditional Linux operating system has been a top pick for its flexibility and ability to be customized. But as great as it is, there are use cases in which stricter security rules and higher reliability standards are needed. That’s where immutable Linux operating systems come in  offering a more secure and reliable option, especially in settings where security is paramount. In this post, we’ll be addressing some common questions to help you understand the principles behind immutable operating systems. We’ll also be exploring the various solutions available and the challenges faced in this field. So, get ready to dive in! Im quite interested in this concept, as I feel it might be something the desktop Linux world is slowly moving towards. Theres considerable advantages, but also the risk of making the whole system far less flexible than desktop Linux is today.

  • Windows needs to stop showing tabloid news
    Did you know that pigs eat humans “far more often than people expect?” If not, surely you must have heard the important, breaking news that a priest “died” in 2016, went to Hell briefly and returned to inform the rest of us that demons like to play Rhianna’s Umbrella song over and over again. If you aren’t aware of these important news stories then maybe you haven’t been spending enough time using Windows’ search box and widgets section, which at least for me, are filled to the brim with tabloid trash headlines. The stories come courtesy of Microsoft’s MSN content network, which syndicates content from hundreds of web publishers: some reputable, some less so. Full disclosure: Our parent company, Future Plc, has a syndication agreement with MSN and many of its sites, including Tom’s Hardware, occasionally have articles appear on the network. What’s problematic here, though, is not that MSN syndicates content but that it often pushes the equivalent of the Weekly World News table of contents right into the Windows operating system where it can be hard to avoid. Actions have consequences. If you choose to use Windows, you choose to get fed garbage all over your operating system in the form of ads and tabloid news.

  • Fallout 4 mod uses voice AI to add sensible reactions, more RPG-like choices
    Modders can change many things inside their favorite games, but dialogue from professionally voiced characters hasnt been one of those things—at least until recently. AI voice generation could open up new modding avenues for some games, as it has already done with one Fallout 4 mod package. Theyre not just new labels on existing dialogue, either. RED, created by NexusMods user ProfMajowski (and first seen by us at PCGamesN), says it used ElevenLabs voice AI to generate its more in-character lines. The results can sometimes sound a little emotionless,'! the creator writes, but otherwise they basically sound like the real thing.! Nothing your character can newly say now will change the games mechanics or reactions, but it should sound a bit more in character. Im not down on artificial intelligence! as a matter of principle  quite the opposite. This story right here is a great example of how AI can be used in productive, interesting ways that truly make something possible that either wasnt possible before, or was simply entirely unrealistic. Spoken dialog is hard to record for a whole slew of reasons, from cost to finding enough quality voice actors to the time it takes, and its usually only the biggest studios that have the ability to add it to their games. Even then its often a struggle, from bad voice acting overall to large role-playing games where e.g. the main quest is beautifully voiced, but side quests are either entirely unvoiced or clearly rushed by some cheap interns. Thanks to technology like this, even small indie studios or mere mod developers can add something meaningful to their work that up until recently simply wasnt realistic. It will make games meaningfully better  especially once technology improves a bit more and developers become proficient with it  without the need for hype.

  • Introducing Butler virtual operating system
    Butler’s goal is to implement a virtual operating system with a strong focus on concurrency. Butler is not a computer hardware operating system. Instead, Butler is an application environment that runs on top of an existing system. Not exactly an operating system in the classical sense, but it still seems like an interesting project.

  • The Internet Archive has lost its first fight to scan and lend e-books like a library
    A federal judge has ruled against the Internet Archive in Hachette v. Internet Archive, a lawsuit brought against it by four book publishers, deciding that the website does not have the right to scan books and lend them out like a library. Judge John G. Koeltl decided that the Internet Archive had done nothing more than create “derivative works,” and so would have needed authorization from the books’ copyright holders — the publishers — before lending them out through its National Emergency Library program. As much as we all want the Internet Archive to be right  and morally, they are  copyright law, as outdated, dumb, and counterproductive as it is, was pretty clear in this case. Sadly.

  • Framework unveils major upgrades to their 13C laptop, and new 16C model
    Today, we’re introducing a major set of upgrades to the Framework Laptop spanning two new models  the Framework Laptop 13 (13th Gen Intel® Core") and the Framework Laptop 13 (AMD Ryzen" 7040 Series). We’ve not only scaled up performance and enabled an AMD-powered version for the first time, but we’ve also delivered refinements to the day-to-day user experience with a higher capacity battery, matte display, louder speakers, and more ridgid hinges. And Framework kept their promise: these new mainboards can be ordered separately and fit into the existing Framework 13C laptop. The company also showed off their next product  a 16C laptop that not only comes with an upgradeable GPU, but also a completely configurable input deck, so you can configure the keyboard and trackpad area in any configuration you like. Im so happy Framework is doing well, as it shows that glued shut, non-repeairable, and non-upgradeable laptops are not some sort of universal inevitable truth.

  • Google’s answer to ChatGPT, Google Bard, is out
    Google Bard is out—sort of. Google says you can now join the waitlist to try the companys generative AI chatbot at the newly launched site. The company is going with Bard! and not the Google Assistant! chatbot branding it was previously using. Other than a sign-up link and an FAQ, there isnt much there right now. Googles blog post calls Bard an early experiment,! and the project is covered in warning labels. The Bard site has a bright blue Experiment! label right on the logo, and the blog post warns, Large language models will not always get it right. Feedback from a wide range of experts and users will help Bard improve.! A disclaimer below the demo input box warns, Bard may display inaccurate or offensive information that doesnt represent Googles views.! Googles Android keyboard and spell checker still cant get its! vs. its! right 80% of the time, so Im not holding my breath.

  • GNOME 44 released
    This release brings a grid view in the file chooser, improved settings panels forDevice Security, Accessibility, etc, and refined quick settings in the shell. The Softwareand Files apps have seen improvements, and a whole slew of new apps has joinedthe GNOME Circle. The release notes have all the details. The grid view in the file chooser alone would be worth a major version bump, considering how long it took them to implement it.

  • Hyundai commits to real buttons and dials for safety reasons
    Car companies have been increasingly using digital screens and soft-touch buttons in modern cars to save costs while looking ‘hi-tech’  but Hyundai has committed to fight this trend for as long as possible. Speaking at the launch of the new-generation Hyundai Kona, Sang Yup Lee, Head of Hyundai Design, said the new model deliberately uses physical buttons and dials for many of the controls, specifically air-conditioning and the sound system. Lee said this is because the move to digital screens is often more dangerous, as it often requires multiple steps and means drivers have to take their eyes off the road to see where they need to press. Slowly but surely, it seems car makers are starting to see the light. A clean, button-less dashboard means nothing once its folded around your crushed skull because you couldnt find the seat heating button without taking your eyes off the road and wrapped yourself around a tree in the process. Just another reason to get an Ioniq 5 if we had the funds.

  • A wunderBAR story
    In fact, the broken bar barely even exists anymore. In the days of DOS, the character used for the pipe symbol (on the DOS command line) or for logical OR (in C/C++, for example) used ASCII code 7Ch (124 decimal), which was rendered as a broken vertical bar by the fonts used at least by the IBM MDA, CGA, EGA, and VGA cards. But nowadays that is no longer the case. The same ASCII codepoint is rendered as a solid vertical bar in Windows 10 or Linux, and also shown as a solid vertical bar on contemporary keyboards. What happened? Who doesnt love some great character and ASCII archeology?

  • Microsoft just laid off one of its responsible AI teams
    Microsoft laid off its entire ethics and society team within the artificial intelligence organization as part of recent layoffs that affected 10,000 employees across the company, Platformer has learned.  The move leaves Microsoft without a dedicated team to ensure its AI principles are closely tied to product design at a time when the company is leading the charge to make AI tools available to the mainstream, current and former employees said. Oh so thats totally not worrying at all or anything.

  • OpenAI announces GPT-4
    We’ve created GPT-4, the latest milestone in OpenAI’s effort in scaling up deep learning. GPT-4 is a large multimodal model (accepting image and text inputs, emitting text outputs) that, while less capable than humans in many real-world scenarios, exhibits human-level performance on various professional and academic benchmarks. For example, it passes a simulated bar exam with a score around the top 10% of test takers; in contrast, GPT-3.5’s score was around the bottom 10%. We’ve spent 6 months iteratively aligning GPT-4 using lessons from our adversarial testing program as well as ChatGPT, resulting in our best-ever results (though far from perfect) on factuality, steerability, and refusing to go outside of guardrails. Artificial intelligence! companies are iterating quickly now. Im definitely looking forward to the new memes based on GPT-4.

  • Docker is deleting open source organisations  what you need to know
    Coming up with a title that explains the full story here was difficult, so Im going to try to explain quickly. Yesterday, Docker sent an email to all Docker Hub users explaining that anyone who has created an organisation! will have their account deleted including all images, if they do not upgrade to a paid team plan. The email contained a link to a tersely written PDF (since, silently edited) which was missing many important details which caused significant anxiety and additional work for open source maintainers. What a shitshow. We really have to start worrying about the future of Github, too, since I find it highly unlikely Microsoft isnt planning similar moves in the future. If youre hosting code at Github, Id suggest looking at alternatives sooner rather than later, so you dont end up like the people affected by something like this.

  • Apple, Foxconn convince Indian state to loosen labor laws
    Apple and its manufacturing partner Foxconn were among the companies behind a landmark liberalization of labor laws in the Indian state of Karnataka last month, according to three people familiar with the matter. Their successful lobbying for new legislation means two-shift production can take place in India, akin to the two companies’ practices in China, their primary manufacturing base. The law gives the southern state one of the most flexible working regimes in India as the country aims to become an alternative manufacturing base to China. We do the right thing, even when it’s not easy.!

Linux Journal News

  • What’s New in Debian 11 “Bullseye”?
    Debian is a preferred choice of millions of Linux users for some of the most popular and powerful operating systems, like Ubuntu and its derivatives are based on Debian.
    Debian 11has finally been released, finally, after a long development work of two years. Bullseye – that’s the name given to this latest Debian Linux distro. So what are the updates and upgrades? In this article, let’s check out what’s new in Debian 11.
    Debian 11’s ArchitectureDebian supports a good range of hardware architectures. 
    Supported Architectures
    ARM EABI (armel) ARMv7 (EABI hard-float ABI and armhf) 64-bit ARM (arm64) 32-bit PC (i386) 64-bit PC (amd64) Little-endian MIPS (mipsel) 64-bit little-endian PowerPC 64-bit little-endian MIPS IBM System z (s390x)Not Supported Hardware
    Old MIPS 32-bit CPUsLinux Kernel InformationDebian 11 supports the Linux Kernel 5.10 LTS. Debian 10 Buster, the earlier version to Debian 11, used Linux Kernel 4.19 while released. A newer kernel means a new set of bug fixes, new hardware support, and improved performance.
    This is the perfect kernel for Debian bullseye considering the Debian lifecycle.   
    Supports exFATexFAT is the shortened form of the Extensible File Allocation Table. It’s a filesystem used for flash memory, such as SD cards and USB flash drives.
    Now Debian 11 provides support for the exFAT. For mounting the exFAT filesystem, you don’t need the filesystem-in-userspace implementation provided by the exfat-fuse package additionally anymore. Thanks to kernel 5.10! exFAT comes in handy with it. Tools for checking and creating an exFAT are given in the exfatprogs package.
    Bauhaus Movement Inspired Theme & WallpaperDebian features cool wallpapers and a default theme for each of the major releases. Debian 11’s theme is inspired by the Bauhaus movement. Bauhaus means “building house” and it was an art and design movement from 20th century Germany. The Bauhaus movement revolved around abstract, geometric style featuring little emotion or sentiments. 
    Its modern aesthetic still is immensely influential for designers, architects, and artists. You can see this theme all through Debian 11 whether it’s the installer, login window, or the Grub menu.
    Newer Desktop Environment VersionsDebian 11 offers newer desktop environment versions. Desktop flavors you get here are, KDE Plasma 5.20, GNOME 3.38, LXDE 11, LXQt 0.16, Xfce 4.16, and MATE 1.24. Debian prefers stability and it’s quite clear from the desktop environments. You might not get the latest cutting-edge distributions like Fedora or Arch/Manjaro.
    Updated PackagesDebian 11 consists of more than 11,294 new packages out of 59,551 packages. It also reduced over 9,519 “obsolete” packages and removed 42,821 that were updated. A total of 5,434 packages remained as they were.
    A good number of software applications and package updates are included in Debian bullseye, such as Apache 2.4.48, Calligra 3.2, Emacs 27.1, LibreOffice 7.0, Inkscape 1.0.2, Linux kernel 5.10 series, Perl 5.32, PHP 7.4, Vim 8.2, PostgreSQL 13, and the list goes on. All these ready-to-use software packages are built with over 30,000 source packages.
    With this huge selection of packages and wide architecture support, Debian has always stayed committed to its aim of being The Universal Operating System.
    Improved Printer and Scanner FeaturesDebian 11 presents a new ipp-usb package. It is built with a vendor-neutral IPP-over-USB protocol that is supported by many latest printers. So, many modern-day printers will be supported now by Debian. And you won’t need the drivers for that.
    SANE driverless backend lets you use scanners without any trouble.
    EndnotesWant to try Debian Bullseye? Get it from here. You can also check “bullseye” with Live Images without installing it on your PC. This will load and run the entire OS in read-only mode. These live images are available for the i386 and amd64 architectures in the form of USB sticks, DVDs, and netboot setups. Debian Live has a standard image. So you can try a basic Debian without any GUIs.
    And that’s the ending of this article. Hope you find our Debian 11 guide helpful.
    #Linux Debian News

  • Nvidia Linux drivers causing random hard crashes and now a major security risk still not fixed after 5+ months
    Image The recent fiasco with Nvidia trying to block Hardware Unboxed from future GPU review samples for the content of their review is one example of how they choose to play this game. This hatred is not only shared by reviewers, but also developers and especially Linux users.
    The infamous Torvalds videos still traverse the web today as Nvidia conjures up another evil plan to suck up more of your money and market share. This is not just one off shoot case; oh how much I wish it was. I just want my computer to work.
    If anyone has used Sway-WM with an Nvidia GPU I’m sure they would remember the –my-next-gpu-wont-be-nvidia option.
    These are a few examples of many.
    The Nvidia Linux drivers have never been good but whatever has been happening at Nvidia for the past decade has to stop today. The topic in question today is this bug: []
    This bug causes hard irrecoverable crashes from driver 440+. This issue is still happening 5+ months later with no end in sight. At first users could work around this by using an older DKMS driver along with a LTS kernel. However today this is no longer possible. Many distributions of Linux are now dropping the old kernels. DKMS cannot build. The users are now FORCED with this “choice”:
    {Use an older driver and risk security implications} or {“use” the new drivers that cause random irrecoverable crashes.}
    This issue is only going to get more and more prevalent as the kernel is a core dependency by definition. This is just another example of the implications of an unsafe older kernel causing issue for users:
    If you use Linux or care about the implications of a GPU monopoly, consider AMD. Nvidia is already rearing its ugly head and AMD is actually putting up a fight this year.
    #Linux NVIDIA News

  • MuseScore Created New Font in Memory of Original SCORE Program Creator
    MuseScore represents a free notation software for operating systems such as Windows, macOS and Linux. It is designed and suitable for music teachers, students & both amateur and professional composers. MuseScore is released as FOSS under the GNU GPL license and it’s accompanied by freemium sheet music catalogue with mobile score viewer, playback app and an online score sharing platform. In 2018, the MuseScore company was acquired by Ultimate Guitar, which included full-time paid developers in the open source team. Since 2019 the MuseScore design team has been led by Martin Keary, known as blogger Tantacrul, who has consistently criticized composer software in connection with design and usability. From that moment on, a qualitative change was set in motion in MuseScore.

    Historically, the engraving quality in MuseScore has not been entirely satisfactory. After the review by Martin Keary, MuseScore product owner (previously known as MuseScore head of design) and Simon Smith, an engraving expert, who has produced multiple detailed reports on the engraving quality of MuseScore 3.5, it has become apparent that some key engraving issues should be resolved immediately.That would have a significant impact on the overall quality of our scores. Therefore, these changes will considerably improve the quality of scores published in the sheet music catalog,

    The MuseScore 3.6 was called 'engraving release,' which addressed many of the biggest issues affecting sheet music's layout and appearance and resulted from a massive collaboration between the community and internal team.


    Two of the most notable additions in this release are Leland, our new notation font and Edwin, our new typeface.

    Leland is a highly sophisticated notation style created by Martin Keary & Simon Smith. Leland aims to provide a classic notation style that feels 'just right' with a balanced, consistent weight and a finessed appearance that avoids overly stylized quirks.

    The new typeface, Edwin, is based on the New Century Schoolbook, which has long been the typeface of choice by some of the world's leading publishers, explicitly chosen as a complementary companion to Leland. We have also provided new default style settings (margins, line thickness, etc.) to compliment Leland and Edwin, which match conventions used by the world's leading publishing houses.

    “Then there's our new typeface, Edwin, which is an open license version of new Century Schoolbook - long a favourite of professional publishers, like Boosey and Hawkes. But since there is no music written yet, you'll be forgiven for missing the largest change of all: our new notation font: Leland, which is named after Leland Smith, the creator of a now abandoned application called SCORE, which was known for the amazing quality of its engraving. We have spent a lot of time finessing this font to be a world beater.”

    — Martin Keary, product owner of MuseScore

    Equally as important as the new notation style is the new vertical layout system. This is switched on by default for new scores and can be activated on older scores too. It is a tremendous improvement to how staves are vertically arranged and will save the composer’s work hours by significantly reducing his reliance on vertical spacers and manual adjustment.

    MuseScore 3.6 developers also created a system for automatically organizing the instruments on your score to conform with a range of common conventions (orchestral, marching band, etc.). Besides, newly created scores will also be accurately bracketed by default. A user can even specify soloists, which will be arranged and bracketed according to your chosen convention. These three new systems result from a collaboration between Simon Smith and the MuseScore community member, Niek van den Berg.

    MuseScore team has also greatly improved how the software displays the notation fonts: Emmentaler and Bravura, which more accurately match the original designers' intentions and have included a new jazz font called 'Petaluma' designed by Anthony Hughes at Steinberg.

    Lastly, MuseScore has made some beneficial improvements to the export process, including a new dialog containing lots of practical and time-saving settings. This work was implemented by one more community member, Casper Jeukendrup.

    The team's current plans are to improve the engraving capabilities of MuseScore, including substantial overhauls to the horizontal spacing and beaming systems. MuseScore 3.6 may be a massive step, although there is a great deal of work ahead.


    Official release notes: MuseScore 3.6

    Martin Keary’s video: “How I Designed a Free Music Font for 5 Million Musicians (MuseScore 3.6)”

    Official video: “MuseScore 3.6 - A Massive Engraving Overhaul!”

    Download MuseScore for free:
    #Linux Music Software FOSS

  • Virtual Machine Startup Shells Closes the Digital Divide One Cloud Computer at a Time
    Image Startup turns devices you probably already own - from smartphones and tablets to smart TVs and game consoles - into full-fledged computers.
    Shells (, a new entrant in the virtual machine and cloud computing space, is excited to launch their new product which gives new users the freedom to code and create on nearly any device with an internet connection.  Flexibility, ease, and competitive pricing are a focus for Shells which makes it easy for a user to start-up their own virtual cloud computer in minutes.  The company is also offering multiple Linux distros (and continuing to add more offerings) to ensure the user can have the computer that they “want” to have and are most comfortable with.

    The US-based startup Shells turns idle screens, including smart TVs, tablets, older or low-spec laptops, gaming consoles, smartphones, and more, into fully-functioning cloud computers. The company utilizes real computers, with Intel processors and top-of-the-line components, to send processing power into your device of choice. When a user accesses their Shell, they are essentially seeing the screen of the computer being hosted in the cloud - rather than relying on the processing power of the device they’re physically using.

    Shells was designed to run seamlessly on a number of devices that most users likely already own, as long as it can open an internet browser or run one of Shells’ dedicated applications for iOS or Android. Shells are always on and always up to date, ensuring speed and security while avoiding the need to constantly upgrade or buy new hardware.

    Shells offers four tiers (Lite, Basic, Plus, and Pro) catering to casual users and professionals alike. Shells Pro targets the latter, and offers a quad-core virtual CPU, 8GB of RAM, 160GB of storage, and unlimited access and bandwidth which is a great option for software engineers, music producers, video editors, and other digital creatives.

    Using your Shell for testing eliminates the worry associated with tasks or software that could potentially break the development environment on your main computer or laptop. Because Shells are running round the clock, users can compile on any device without overheating - and allow large compile jobs to complete in the background or overnight. Shells also enables snapshots, so a user can revert their system to a previous date or time. In the event of a major error, simply reinstall your operating system in seconds.

    “What Dropbox did for cloud storage, Shells endeavors to accomplish for cloud computing at large,” says CEO Alex Lee. “Shells offers developers a one-stop shop for testing and deployment, on any device that can connect to the web. With the ability to use different operating systems, both Windows and Linux, developers can utilize their favorite IDE on the operating system they need. We also offer the added advantage of being able to utilize just about any device for that preferred IDE, giving devs a level of flexibility previously not available.”

    “Shells is hyper focused on closing the digital divide as it relates to fair and equal access to computers - an issue that has been unfortunately exacerbated by the ongoing pandemic,” Lee continues. “We see Shells as more than just a cloud computing solution - it’s leveling the playing field for anyone interested in coding, regardless of whether they have a high-end computer at home or not.”

    Follow Shells for more information on service availability, new features, and the future of “bring your own device” cloud computing:


    Twitter: @shellsdotcom


    #virtual-machine #cloud-computing #Shells

  • Ubuntu 20.10 “Groovy Gorilla” Arrives With Linux 5.8, GNOME 3.38, Raspberry Pi 4 Support
    Article Images Image
    Just two days ago, Ubuntu marked the 16th anniversary of its first ever release, Ubuntu 4.10 “Warty Warthog,” which showed Linux could be a more user friendly operating system.

    Back to now, after the six months of development cycle and the release of the current long-term Ubuntu 20.04 “Focal Fossa,” Canonical has announced a new version called Ubuntu 20.10 “Groovy Gorilla” along with its seven official flavor: Kubuntu, Lubuntu, Ubuntu MATE, Ubuntu Kylin, Xubuntu, Ubuntu Budgie, and Ubuntu Studio.

    Ubuntu 20.10 is a short term or non-LTS release, which means it will be supported for 9 months until July 2021. Though v20.10 does not seem a major release, it does come with a lot of exciting and new features. So, let’s see what Ubuntu 20.10 “Groovy Gorilla” has to offer:
    New Features in Ubuntu 20.10 “Groovy Gorilla”

    Ubuntu desktop for Raspberry Pi 4
    Starting with one of the most important enhancements, Ubuntu 20.10 has become the first Ubuntu release to feature desktop images for the Raspberry Pi 4. Yes, you can now download and run Ubuntu 20.10 desktop on your Raspberry Pi models with at least 4GB of RAM.

    Even both Server and Desktop images also support the new Raspberry Pi Compute Module 4. The 20.10 images may still boot on earlier models, but new Desktop images only built for the arm64 architecture and officially only support the Pi 4 variant with 4GB or 8GB RAM.
    Linux Kernel 5.8

    Upgrading the previous Linux kernel 5.4, the latest Ubuntu 20.10 ships the new Linux kernel 5.8, which is dubbed“the biggest release of all time” by Linus Torvalds as it contains the highest number of over 17595 commits.

    So it’s obvious that Linux 5.8 brings numerous updates, new features, and hardware support. For instance, Kernel Event Notification Mechanism, Intel Tiger Lake Thunderbolt support, extended IPv6 Multi-Protocol Label Switching (MPLS) support, Inline Encryption hardware support, Thunderbolt support for Intel Tiger Lake and non-x86 systems, and initial support for booting POWER10 processors.
    GNOME 3.38 Desktop Environment

    Another key change that Ubuntu 20.10 includes is the latest version of GNOME desktop environment, which enhances the visual appearance, performance, and user experience of Ubuntu.

    One of my favorite features that GNOME 3.38 introduces is a much-needed separate “Restart” button in the System menu.

    Among other enhancements, GNOME 3.38 also includes:
    Better multi-monitor support Revamped GNOME Screenshot app Customizable App Grid with no “Frequent Apps” tab Battery percentage indicator New Welcome Tour app written in Rust Core GNOME apps improvementsShare Wi-Fi hotspot Via QR Code

    If you’re the person who wants to share the system’s Internet with other devices wirelessly, this feature of sharing Wi-Fi hotspot through QR code will definitely please you.

    Thanks to GNOME 3.38, you can now turn your Linux system into a portable Wi-Fi hotspot by sharing QR code with the devices like laptops, tablets, and mobiles.
    Add events in GNOME Calendar app

    Forget to remember the events? A pre-installed GNOME Calendar app now lets you add new events (birthday, meetings, reminders, releases), which displays in the message tray. Instead of adding new events manually, you can also sync your events from Google, Microsoft, or Nextcloud calendars after adding online accounts from the settings.
    Active Directory Support

    In the Ubiquity installer, Ubuntu 20.10 has also added an optional feature to enable Active Directory (AD) integration. If you check the option, you’ll be directed to configure the AD by giving information about the domain, administrator, and password.

    Tools and Software upgrade

    Ubuntu 20.10 also features the updated tools, software, and subsystems to their new versions. This includes:
    glibc 2.32, GCC 10, LLVM 11 OpenJDK 11 rustc 1.41 Python 3.8.6, Ruby 2.7.0, PHP 7.4.9 perl 5.30 golang 1.13 Firefox 81 LibreOffice 7.0.2 Thunderbird 78.3.2 BlueZ 5.55 NetworkManager 1.26.2Other enhancements to Ubuntu 20.10:Nftables replaces iptables as default backend for the firewall Better support for fingerprint login Cloud images with KVM kernels boot without an initramfs by default Snap pre-seeding optimizations for boot time improvements
    A full release notes of Ubuntu 20.10 is also available to read right from here.
    How To Download Or Upgrade To Ubuntu 20.10
    If you’re looking for a fresh installation of Ubuntu 20.10, download the ISO image available for several platforms such as Desktop, Server, Cloud, and IoT.

    But if you’re already using the previous version of Ubuntu, you can also easily upgrade your system to the Ubuntu 20.10. For upgrading, you must be using Ubuntu 20.04 LTS as you cannot directly reach 20.10 from 19.10, 19.04, 18.10, 18.04, 17.04, or 16.04. You should first hop on to v20.04 and then to the latest v20.10.

    As Ubuntu 20.10 is a non-LTS version and by design, Ubuntu only notifies a new LTS release, you need to upgrade manually by either choosing a GUI method using the built-in Software Updater tool or a command line method using the terminal.

    For command line method, open terminal and run the following commands:

    sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade

    sudo do-release-upgrade -d -m desktop

    Or else, if you’re not a terminal-centric person, here’s an official upgrade guide using a GUI Software Updater.

    Enjoy Groovy Gorilla!
    Ubuntu Groovy Gorilla GNOME GNOME 3.0 Raspberry Pi kernel

  • Linux Mint 20.1 “Ulyssa” Will Arrive In Mid-December With Chromium, WebApp Manager
    Article Images Image
    As the Linux Mint team is progressing to release the first point version of Linux Mint 20 series, its founder and project leader Clement Lefebvre has finally revealed the codename for Linux Mint 20.1 as “Ulyssa”. He has also announced that Mint 20.1 will most probably arrive in mid-December (just before Christmas).

    Until you wait for its beta release to test Linux Mint 20.1, Clement has also shared some great news regarding the new updates and features that you’ll get in Mint 20.1.

    First, packaging of open source Chromium web browser and its updates directly through the official Mint repositories. As the team noticed delays between the official release and the version available in Linux distros, it has now decided to set up their own packaging and build Chromium package based on upstream code, along with some patches from Debian and Ubuntu as well.

    As a result, the first test build of Chromium is available to download from here.

    In last month's blog, the Mint team introduced a new WebApp Manager, inspired by Peppermint OS and its SSB (Site Specific Browser) application manager, ICE. It is a WebApp management system that will debut in Linux Mint 20.1 to turn a website into a standalone desktop application.

    However, the Debian package of WebApp Manager v1.0.5 is now available to download, which comes with UI improvements, bug fixes and better translations for languages.



    Another feature that you’ll be thrilled to see in Linux Mint 20.1 is the hardware video acceleration enabled by default in the Celluloid video player. Obviously, hardware-accelerated players will bring smoother playback, better performance and reduced CPU usage.



    Besides the confirmed features, the Linux Mint team is also looking for feedback on a side-project by Stephen Collins, “Sticky notes.” It is a note-taking app, which is still in Alpha stage. But if all goes well, who knows, you’ll see Sticky notes app in the upcoming Linux Mint.



    The Linux Mint team has also asked for opinion on IPTV (Internet Protocol Television). If you use M3U IPTV on your phone, tablet or smart TV, you can let them know. The team seems interested to develop an IPTV solution for Linux desktop as a side project if the audience is small or turn it into an official Linux Mint project, if demand is good enough.
    Linux Mint

  • Newest IPFire Release Includes Security Fixes and Additional Hardware Support (IPFire 2.25 - Core Update 147)
    Michael Tremer, maintainer of the IPFire project, announced IPFire 2.25 Core Update 147 today. This is the newest IPFire release since Core Update 146 on June 29th.

    IPFire 2.25 Core Update 147 includes some important security updates including a newer version of Squid web proxy that has patched recent vulnerabilities.

    Beyond security updates, IPFire 2.25 Core Update 147 adds support for additional hardware, as well as enhancing support for existing hardware because the new release ships with version 20200519 of the Linux firmware package.

    IPFire 2.25 Core Update 147 also rectified a recurring issue relating to forwarding GRE connections.

    In addition, the update improved IPFire on AWS configurations.

    IPFire 2.25 Core Update 147 includes these updated packages: bind 9.11.20, dhcpcd 9.1.2, GnuTLS 3.6.14, gmp 6.2.0, iproute2 5.7.0, libassuan 2.5.3, libgcrypt 1.8.5, libgpg-error 1.38, OpenSSH 8.3p1, squidguard 1.6.0.

    You can download IPFire 2.25 Core Update 147 here.

Linux Magazine News (path: lmi_news)

  • Netrunner OS 23 Is Now Available
    The latest version of this Linux distribution is now based on Debian Bullseye and is ready for installation and finally hits the KDE 5.20 branch of the desktop.

Page last modified on November 17, 2022, at 06:39 PM