A company called Rothschild Patent Imaging LLC has filed a lawsuit [PDF]against the GNOME Foundation, alleging that the Shotwell photo manager violates patent 9,936,086. Stay tuned, more details will surely emerge.
Google has a long and interesting history contributing to the upstream Linux kernel. With Chrome OS, Google has tried to learn from some of the mistakes of its past and is now working with the upstream Linux kernel as much as it can. In a session at the 2019 Open Source Summit North America, Google software engineer Doug Anderson detailed how and why Chrome OS developers work upstream. It is an effort intended to help the Linux community as well as Google.
In an offshoot of the Debian discussion we looked at last week, the Debian project has been discussing the idea of paying developers to work on the distribution. There is some history behind the idea, going back to the controversial Dunc-Tank initiative in 2006, but some think attitudes toward funding developers may have changed—or that a new approach might be better accepted. While it is playing out with regard to Debian right now, it is a topic that other projects have struggled with along the way—and surely will again.
The basic organizational construct within the Kubernetes project is a set of Special Interest Groups (SIGs), each of which represents a different area of responsibility within the project. Introductions to what the various SIGs do, as well as more detailed sessions, were a core part of KubeCon + CloudNativeCon Europe 2019, as the different groups explained what they're doing now and their plans for the future. Two sessions, in particular, covered the work of the Release and Architecture SIGs, both of which have a key role in driving the project forward.
Here's a research paper from Andrew Baumann, Jonathan Appavoo, Orran Krieger, and Timothy Roscoe at Microsoft Research arguing that the fork() system call is a fundamental design mistake. "As the designers and implementers of operating systems, we should acknowledge that fork’s continued existence as a first-class OS primitive holds back systems research, and deprecate it. As educators, we should teach fork as a historical artifact, and not the first process creation mechanism students encounter." The discussion of better alternatives is limited, though.
While a few weeks back it looked like there might be a complete lack of Debian project leader (DPL) candidates, that situation has changed. After a one-week delay, five Debian developers have nominated themselves. We are now about halfway through the campaign phase; platforms have been posted and questions have been asked and answered. It seems a good time to have a look at the candidates and their positions.
The article is behind a paywall but it should be released in a week from now. Anyway the issue is that a security company found a web vulnerability in a web based management tool for small business Linux Servers. The Cisco fix was to disable the curl user-agent from accessing their service!
One of the traditional rites of the (northern hemisphere) spring is the election for the Debian project leader. Over a six-week period, interested candidates put their names forward, describe their vision for the project as a whole, answer questions from Debian developers, then wait and watch while the votes come in. But what would happen if Debian were to hold an election and no candidates stepped forward? The Debian project has just found itself in that situation and is trying to figure out what will happen next.
I could just about accept or tolerate the claim #lwn looks old, crude and outdated because it wants to be light, simple, user-friendly. But that's just not true anymore because they added spyware to all their pages.
Facebook runs a lot of programs and it tries to pack as many as it can onto each machine. That means running close to—and sometimes beyond—the resource limits on any given machine. How the system reacts when, for example, memory is exhausted, makes a big difference in Facebook getting its work done. Tejun Heo came to 2018 Open Source Summit North America to describe the resource control work that has been done by the team he works on at Facebook.
There are currently a number of sites bouncing emails from LWN.net due to an alleged listing in the dnsbl.njabl.org blacklist. The only problem is that this blacklist has been offline since 2013. That domain has been taken over by somebody else; checking web content at that address is not recommended as it is, to put it lightly, non-technical. If you are not getting expected email from LWN, you might want to look into whether your local setup is still trying to use that old, discontinued blacklist.
"improve how operating-system-directed power management and the kernel's task scheduler work together to achieve the goal of reducing energy consumption while still meeting performance and latency requirements." https://lwn.net/Articles/754923/ #lwn
The second Operating-System-Directed Power-Management (OSPM18) Summit took place at the ReTiS Lab of the Scuola Superiore Sant'Anna in Pisa between April 16 and April 18, 2018. Like last year, the summit was organized as a collection of collaborative sessions focused on trying to improve how operating-system-directed power management and the kernel's task scheduler work together to achieve the goal of reducing energy consumption while still meeting performance and latency requirements. Read on for an extensive set of notes collected by a number of the participants to the summit.
Microsoft has issued a press release describing the security dangers involved with the Internet of things ("a weaponized stove, baby monitors that spy, the contents of your refrigerator being held for ransom") and introducing "Microsoft Azure Sphere" as a combination of hardware and software to address the problem. "Unlike the RTOSes common to MCUs today, our defense-in-depth IoT OS offers multiple layers of security. It combines security innovations pioneered in Windows, a security monitor, and a custom Linux kernel to create a highly-secured software environment and a trustworthy platform for new IoT experiences."