[osnews.com] Taking the 3.5mm jack off phones is stupid when Samsung does it too
Basically: not having a headphone jack might not be enough to deter sales of a phone, but it's still really annoying and requires users to spend additional money to reclaim very basic functionality from their devices. And most of that money flows back to the device vendor, effectively increasing the price of the phone. We've taken something simple and universal, and turned it into something complex and proprietary, for no obvious benefits. It's a bad trade-off. It's... user-hostile and stupid. There's just no getting around it.There's no tangible benefit to ditching the universal 3.5mm jack - whether Apple does it, or Samsung does it, or anyone else does it.We're months and months into this discussion now, and to this day, nobody - not Apple, not Samsung, not John Gruber, not any commenters anywhere - has given me a real, valid, tangible reason why removing the 3.5mm jack is a good idea. Lightning audio is stupid because only the iPhone/iPad support it (not even Macs comes with Lightning ports), and wireless audio is garbage - something even Apple is only now finding out. Those wireless AirPods Apple unveiled to much fanfare? They have been delayed and delayed, and are actually still unavailable, because Bluetooh audio is complete and utter garbage.It almost feels like removing the 3.5mm jack was a sociological science experiment to determine just how far people were willing to go to defend and rationalise a deeply dumb idea.
[linuxtoday.com] Amazon Brings the Cloud to Canada (Linux-Powered!)

eWEEK: Amazon launches AWS Canada (Central) Region in Montreal, extending Amazon's cloud infrastructure to 15 regions and 40 availability zones around the world.

[linuxtoday.com] Linux Kernel 4.8.13 Launches with ARM64 and AMDGPU Improvements, KVM Fixes

 softpedia: While many rolling GNU/Linux distributions have just received the Linux 4.8.12 kernel, it looks like Linux kernel 4.8.13 is now available with more improvements and bug fixes

[slashdot.org] Bitcoin Hits Highest Levels In Almost Three Years
Digital currency bitcoin hit its highest levels in almost three years on Friday, extending gains since India sparked a cash shortage by removing high-denomination bank notes from circulation a month ago. From a report on Reuters: Bitcoin was trading as high as $774 on the New York-based itBit exchange, up almost 1 percent on the day and the highest since February 2014, having climbed almost 9 percent in the past month. It has climbed around 80 percent so far this year, far exceeding its 35 percent rise in 2015.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

[slashdot.org] Alphabet Donated Its Employees' Holiday Gifts To Charity
The employee perks at Google are legendary, and they've always included an over-the-top holiday gift for every employee. In the past, the company has surprised its 70,000 employees with Nexus phones, Android smartwatches, and Chromebooks. Fortune adds:This year employees speculated they might get Google's new Pixel phones or a Google Home unit, the company's competitor to Amazon's Echo. But they forgot: They don't work for Google anymore. They work for Alphabet. Instead of a shiny new gadget, Alphabet employees got an email. On Thursday Bloomberg published a bruising story about the new, cost-conscious regime of Alphabet, driven by its corporate re-organization and its ex-Wall Street CFO, Ruth Porat. Shortly after the story hit, employees were informed that their holiday gift this year was a donation to charity, Fortune has learned. Alphabet donated $30 million worth of Chromebooks, phones, and associated tech support to schools on its employees' behalf.

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[linux.com] Ask John Willis Your DevOps Questions in this Free Webinar Series
Title: 
Ask John Willis Your DevOps Questions in this Free Webinar Series
[linux.com] At Long Last, Linux Gets Dynamic Tracing

When the Linux kernel version 4.9 will be released next week, it will come with the last pieces needed to offer to some long-awaited dynamic thread-tracing capabilities.

[linuxtoday.com] Secure IoT Through Oversight, Open Source and Open Standards

If the Internet plays a part in how you earn your living, then you should be concerned about the current state of IoT security, which threatens to bring unprecedented instability to the public facing network.

[slashdot.org] Verizon Says It Will Not Push Samsung's Update That Disables Galaxy Note7 Because Of User Inconvenience
Samsung confirmed on Friday that it will indeed release an update to Galaxy Note7 smartphones in the United States to "prevent US Galaxy Note7 devices from charging and will eliminate their ability to work as mobile devices." In a new wrinkle to this whole situation, Verizon said today it will not be releasing Samsung's software update to Galaxy Note7 users on Verizon network. In a blog post, Verizon said: "Verizon will not be taking part in this update because of the added risk this could pose to Galaxy Note 7 users that do not have another device to switch to. We will not push a software upgrade that will eliminate the ability for the Note 7 to work as a mobile device in the heart of the holiday travel season. We do not want to make it impossible to contact family, first responders or medical professionals in an emergency situation." To recall, the Galaxy Note7 remains banned on airlines by the FAA and has also been prohibited from being used on many other public transit services in the United States. Elsewhere in the world, similar bans have been imposed on the phone.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

[slashdot.org] Michigan Lets Autonomous Cars On Roads Without Human Driver
Companies can now test self-driving cars on Michigan public roads without a driver or steering wheel under new laws that could push the state to the forefront of autonomous vehicle development. From a report on ABC: The package of bills signed into law Friday comes with few specific state regulations and leaves many decisions up to automakers and companies like Google and Uber. It also allows automakers and tech companies to run autonomous taxi services and permits test parades of self-driving tractor-trailers as long as humans are in each truck. And they allow the sale of self-driving vehicles to the public once they are tested and certified, according to the state. The bills allow testing without burdensome regulations so the industry can move forward with potential life-saving technology, said Gov. Rick Snyder, who was to sign the bills. "It makes Michigan a place where particularly for the auto industry it's a good place to do work," he said.

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[linuxtoday.com] What’s New with Xen Project Hypervisor 4.8?

Xen: This release also marks the start of our first 6-month release cycle. Despite the shorter timeframe and putting more thorough security processes in place, we have maintained development momentum for Xen Project Hypervisor.

[linuxtoday.com] Android Marshmallow on PC Falls Flat

LinuxInsider: Android-x86 lets you run the Android OS with the Google Chrome browser on your desktop and laptop computers, rather than buying one of the qualified Chromebooks with the Google Play Store features bolted on.

[slashdot.org] President Obama Orders Review of Cyber Attacks On 2016 Election
President Barack Obama has ordered a full review of hacking activities aimed at disrupting last month's presidential election, media outlets reported Friday citing a top White House official. The results are to be delivered to Obama before he leaves the office. From a report on Reuters: "The president has directed the intelligence community to conduct a full review of what happened during the 2016 election process ... and to capture lessons learned from that and to report to a range of stakeholders, to include the Congress," homeland security adviser Lisa Monaco said during an event hosted by the Christian Science Monitor.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

[slashdot.org] Facebook Discloses New Measurement Errors, Continues To Hone Its Math
An anonymous reader shares an article on MarketingLand: For the third time since September, Facebook is disclosing new measurement errors. The two new errors affected the reaction counts Facebook reports on Pages' Live videos, as well as the engagement figures Facebook reports for off-Facebook links; the latter link engagement metrics were recently used in investigations by BuzzFeed and The New York Times into fake news articles' performance on Facebook. In addition to acknowledging the two new errors -- of which one has been corrected and one is still being inspected -- Facebook has refined a measurement marketers may reference when buying ads through the social network. None of the aforementioned metrics had any impact on how much money Facebook charges advertisers for their campaigns. But they may have informed brands' Facebook ad-buying strategies as well as brands', publishers' and others' Facebook-related content-publishing strategies.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

[lwn.net] Security advisories for Friday

Arch Linux has updated jasper(multiple vulnerabilities, two from 2015) and linux-zen (code execution).

Debian-LTS has updated roundcube(code execution) and spip (?:).

Fedora has updated httpd (F25:denial of service).

Mageia has updated phpmyadmin (multiple vulnerabilities).

openSUSE has updated GraphicsMagick (42.2: multiple vulnerabilities, many from 2014), kernel (13.2: multiple vulnerabilities, two from 2015), and libXfixes (13.2: denial of service).

Red Hat has updated python-XStatic-jquery-ui (RHOSP 9.0; RHOSP8.0: cross-site scripting), rh-mariadb100-mariadb (RHSC: multiple vulnerabilities), and rh-mariadb101-mariadb (RHSC: multiple vulnerabilities).

SUSE has updated kernel (SLE12:three vulnerabilities).

Ubuntu has updated oxide-qt(16.10, 16.04, 14.04: multiple vulnerabilities).

[linux.com] This Week in Open Source News: Hyperledger's Growth Surges, OSS Networking Pro Joins The Linux Foundation & More
Title: 
This Week in Open Source News: Hyperledger's Growth Surges, OSS Networking Pro Joins The Linux Foundation & More
[linux.com] Viewing Linux Logs from the Command Line
Title: 
Viewing Linux Logs from the Command Line
[linux.com] Create a Fully Automated Light and Music Show for the Holidays: Part 3
Title: 
Create a Fully Automated Light and Music Show for the Holidays: Part 3
[linux.com]  Create a Fully Automated Light and Music Show for the Holidays: Part 2
Title: 
Create a Fully Automated Light and Music Show for the Holidays: Part 2
[linux.com] Create a Fully Automated Light and Music Show for the Holidays: Part 1
Title: 
Create a Fully Automated Light and Music Show for the Holidays: Part 1
[linux.com] Diversity Scholarship Series: My Time at CloudNativeCon 2016
Title: 
Diversity Scholarship Series: My Time at CloudNativeCon 2016
[linux.com] Red Hat Opens Up OpenShift Dedicated to Google Cloud Platform

When businesses and enterprises begin adopting data center platforms that utilize containerization, then and only then can we finally say that the container trend is sweeping the planet.

[linux.com] Secure IoT Through Oversight, Open Source and Open Standards

It should be obvious to just about everyone by now that the current state of affairs concerning the Internet of insecure things threatens the stability of the Internet. This wouldn't have been such a big deal 15 or 20 years ago, but we've now put all of our eggs in the Internet basket, and if it goes down, so does the world economy. Not only that, an undependable and unstable Internet would affect everything from major utilities -- phone, power and water -- to law enforcement and national defense -- in no matter what country you reside.

[linuxtoday.com] Transitioning to Python 3

LinuxJournal: The good news is that Python 3, which at the time of this writing exists in version 3.5, is indeed better than Python 2.

[slashdot.org] Magic Leap Used Fake Tech Demos and Is 'Years' Behind Schedule
New submitter drunkdrone writes: Magic Leap's coveted mixed reality technology has been the subject of intense speculation since it broke ground in 2014. Having secured billions of dollars in funding from some of the world's biggest tech giants, the secretive start-up has managed to stay at the centre of the VR/AR conversation despite showing little of the so-called revolutionary technology it has in the works. Now, the Magic Leap hype bubble may be about to burst in spectacularly disappointing fashion. According to reports, the Florida-based start-up is years behind on its plans and may have used deceptive product demos in order to keep interest in its tech alive. The Verge, which quotes an exclusive article from The Information, reports that Magic Leap's mixed reality technology has long since been overtaken by other products already on the market such as Microsoft's HoloLens, which Magic Leap's technology is said to most closely resemble. Allegedly, Magic Leap has struggled to scale-down a bulky piece of laser projection equipment used within the headset's display. "The crux of the problem appears to be Magic Leap's gamble on a so-called fibre scanning display, which shines a laser through a fibre optic cable that moves rapidly back and forth to draw images out of light," reports the Verge.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

[slashdot.org] Mars One Delayed Its Mars Mission -- Again
Mars One says its project to start a human colony on the Red Planet will be delayed by five years. The Dutch company says it will send its first crews to Mars in 2031 instead of its previous target date of 2026. From a report on Time: The venture is delaying its missions so it can raise more money, according to CEO Bas Lansdorp. "Of course the whole Mars One team would have preferred to be able to stick to the original schedule, but this new timeline significantly improves our odds of successfully achieving this mission roadmap," he said in a statement. This is far from the first time Mars One has delayed its project. Despite Lansdorp's confidence, other scientists have expressed significant doubts about the mission's feasibility.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

[slashdot.org] White House Voices Concerns About China Cyber Law
The White House said on Thursday that it raised concerns about China's new cyber security law during a meeting with a Chinese official after the latest round of talks between the two countries on cyber crime. From a report on Reuters: U.S. National Security Adviser Susan Rice met with Chinese State Councilor Guo Shengkun to discuss the importance "of fully adhering" to an anti-hacking accord signed last year between the China and the United States, National Security Council spokesman Ned Price said. The deal, brokered during Chinese President Xi Jinping's state visit to Washington in 2015, included a pledge that neither country would knowingly carry out hacking for commercial advantages. Rice told Guo that the United States was concerned "about the potential impacts" of a law that China adopted in November aimed at combating hacking and terrorism.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

[linuxtoday.com] Linux Kernel Developers Discuss Dropping FBDEV Staging Drivers

Phoronix: For years there have been calls to kill FBDEV in the Linux kernel but it has yet to happen while FBDEV these days sees little movement.

[linuxtoday.com] 4 open source drone projects

 opensource.com: Learn about the open source projects powering the next generation of unmanned aerial vehicles.

[slashdot.org] Nintendo Legend Miyamoto: Mario Needs To Evolve To Survive
Shigeru Miyamoto, Nintendo's legendary game designer, and his fellow developers were tinkering with a "one-button control scheme" for Mario, where all a player can do is make Mario jump. This dead simple idea became the crux of the company's new Super Mario Run, one of the most anticipated mobile-app games of the year. CNET adds: "We found a great way to make an accessible Mario game and bring it to iPhone and reach a lot of people," Miyamoto said Thursday through his translator. "That's when we decided to make Super Mario Run." Super Mario Run may become a critical next step for Nintendo, which has struggled for years to maintain its relevance in gaming against Sony's PlayStation and Microsoft's Xbox, as well as a surge of mobile gaming apps. This year, it garnered some attention from Pokemon Go, though it's only partly involved in that game. Now, two more Nintendo mobile gaming apps -- Animal Crossing and Fire Emblem -- are on the way, which could provide the Japanese company with a big boost.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

[linuxtoday.com] Remembering Linux Installfests

 FOSSforce: In this article, for the first time since 2003 a writer makes mention of Caldera without immediately following it with a mention of SCO.

[slashdot.org] Samsung May Permanently Disable Galaxy Note 7 Phones In The US As Soon As Next Week
Those who are still clinging on to their Galaxy Note 7, even after Samsung recalled the devices due to faulty batteries in mid-September, may want to seriously reconsider returning them to the Korean company. The Verge has obtained an image of an alert that went out to at least one Note 7 owner on U.S. Cellular today stating that, "As of December 15th, Samsung will modify the software to prevent the Galaxy Note 7 from charging. The phone will no longer work." The Verge reports: It's not clear whether Note 7s will be disabled across the major U.S. carriers as well, but it seems likely that'll be the case. In the past, updates disabling Note 7 features have rolled out across Verizon, ATT, and other carriers within a matter of days. That's probably what'll happen here, as well. By preventing the phone from charging, Samsung takes the final step to making the phone entirely unusable. It's still offering Note 7 owners the ability to fully return the phone or exchange it for another Samsung device. As of November 4th, when Samsung last provided an update, 85 percent of Note 7s sold in the U.S. had been recovered. That still left around 285,000 phones unaccounted for. Completely disabling the phone seems to be Samsung's last-ditch effort to either recover the remaining devices or remove what risk they still pose to consumers.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

[linuxtoday.com] How to access shell environment variables in Perl script

xmodulo: In some cases you may want to access shell environment variables (e.g., $PATH, $PWD, $HOME, $LANG) in your Perl script.

[slashdot.org] Zeus Variant 'Floki Bot' Targets PoS Data
Trailrunner7 quotes a report from On the Wire: Malware gangs, like sad wedding bands bands, love to play the hits. And one of the hits they keep running back over and over is the Zeus banking Trojan, which has been in use for many years in a number of different forms. Researchers have unearthed a new piece of malware called Floki Bot that is based on the venerable Zeus source code and is being used to infect point-of-sale systems, among other targets. Flashpoint conducted the analysis of Floki Bot with Cisco's Talos research team, and the two organizations said that the author behind the bot maintains a presence on a number of different underground forums, some of which are in Russian or other non-native languages for him. Kremez said that attackers sometimes will participate in foreign language forums as a way to expand their knowledge. Along with its PoS infection capability, Floki Bot also has a feature that allows it to use the Tor network to communicate. "During our analysis of Floki Bot, Talos identified modifications that had been made to the dropper mechanism present in the leaked Zeus source code in an attempt to make Floki Bot more difficult to detect. Talos also observed the introduction of new code that allows Floki Bot to make use of the Tor network. However, this functionality does not appear to be active for the time being," Cisco's Talos team said in its analysis.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

[slashdot.org] Google Now Lets Developers Write Apps For the Assistant On Google Home
Google today announced it will open up Home to third-party developers, allowing all developers to start bringing their applications and services to the Google Assistant. Developers can start building "conversation actions" for the Google Assistant, which "allows developers to create back-and-forth conversations with users through the Assistant," writes Frederic Lardinois via TechCrunch. "Users can simply start these conversations by using a phrase like 'OK Google, talk to Eliza.'" TechCrunch reports: While the Assistant also runs on the Pixel phones and inside the Allo chat app, Google says it plans to bring actions to these other "Assistant surfaces" in the future, but it's unclear when exactly this will happen. To help developers who want to build these new Conversation Actions get started, Google has teamed up with a number of partners, including API.AI, GupShup, DashBot and VoiceLabs, Assist, Notify.IO, Witlingo and Spoken Layer. Google has also allowed a small number of partners to enable their apps on Google Home already. These integrations will roll out as early as next week. Given that users will be able to invoke these new actions with a simple command (and without having to first enable a skill, like on Alexa), Google's platform looks to be a rather accessible and low-friction way for developers to get their voice-enabled services to users. Google will have the final say over which actions will be enabled on Google Home.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.