NixFAQ News briefs – Whats happening in the tech world?

Hello and welcome to today’s NixFAQ news and today I will discuss things that happening in the *nix universe and the tech world. We have lots of new releases which I won’t discuss much, instead I will focus on important and interesting news and events happening in the *nix universe and the tech world.

Github will continue to operate in Iran

Github will continue operating in Iran after the US grants exemptions. This is great news for Iranian developers who are working with open source software. And after the exemption, Github is working to restore services in Crimea and Syria.

Due to the US sanction, Iran is restricted to trade within the US. That means no US based services can operate in Iran. The exemption happened a few days ago and yesterday Github announced that they will now operate without restriction in Iran. Previously Github only provided limited access in Iran.

Minecraft Earth is shutting down

Microsoft announced that it will shut down Minecraft Earth, an Augmented Reality game based on a successful Minecraft game. It allowed players to use Augmented Reality to build various things with different blocks in real life scenes. Players could interact with the real world and explore similar to Pokemon Go, another successful AR game.

Microsoft released the last version yesterday and it will remove the app on June 30th. And player data will be deleted in July. The reason for the shutdown is global pandemic and players cannot go out. Microsoft encouraged players to play the game at home but still the main purpose of the game is hindered due to the ongoing pandemic.

Singapore is using Covid-19 tracking data for different purpose

Singapore used data collected from the mandatory covid19 app enforced on residents. About 70% of Singapore’s residents have installed and provided data for the app. Recently, the security officials accessed collected data from the app and used it for murder investigation.

While many can defend the reasoning, it is certainly a violation of privacy. Many developing countries with unstable political states can misuse such data to oppress minority, target individuals and misuse for various reasons.

The minister of Singapore said: “I think Singaporeans can understand why Section 20 of the CPC confers such broad powers. There may be serious crimes — murder, terrorist incidents — where the use of TraceTogether data in police investigations may be necessary in the public interest. The police must be given the tools to bring criminals to justice and protect the safety and security of all Singaporeans.”

Microsoft is planning for a redesigned Windows 10

WIndows 10 is far from a polished operating system. The overall design is inconsistent and awkward for this old operating system. The theming is limited and complex while windows, icons and context menus show inconsistencies across desktop. Microsoft is planning to redesign Windows 10 and make it polished. It is a rumor, I can feel why Microsoft should do such a thing.

With the release of Windows 10, a fully re-designed layout and desktop experience with new and edge features. New start menu, taskbar, window and settings gave Windows 10 a new look. But older complex control panels and features were also still included. Windows 10 was suffering from inconsistency.

UK judge blocks extradition of Wikileaks founder to US

A UK judge has ruled that Jullian Assange, founder of Wikileaks cannot be extradited to the US for health issues. Mr Assange faces an 18-count indictment from the US government, accusing him of conspiring to hack into US military databases to acquire sensitive secret information relating to the Afghanistan and Iraq wars, which was then published on the Wikileaks website. Later Assange took refuge in the UK and UK police arrested Assange due to a request from the US.

“Faced with the conditions of near total isolation without the protective factors which limited his risk at HMP Belmarsh, I am satisfied the procedures described by the US will not prevent Mr Assange from finding a way to commit suicide and for this reason I have decided extradition would be oppressive by reason of mental harm and I order his discharge.”

Know who contributed most in Linux 5.10

Statistics published by LWN gives us a summary of the contributions made by various organizations. On this version of Linux kernel, Huawei and Intel took the lead in contribution. Huawei with its OpenEuler and cloud business that is competing with AWS and Google Cloud heavily relies on Linux.

Huawei with its US ban, struggling with the restriction from using Android, latest technology and Qualcomm’s chipsets. Recently they announced an open source operating system for their own ecosystem which is based on AOSP and Linux.

Apple patent indicates wireless charging base integrated in Macbooks chassis

A new patient has surfaced and people are talking about Apple’s patent for an integrated wireless charging system. The patent shows three charging coils inside macbooks chassis with iphone charging on one side, and apple watch on the other side.

Although this is just a patent and Apple may or may not introduce it in the future, this is a cool thing which can be very handy for so many users. ‘

Amazon buys more jets

Amazon adds more jets to their delivery fleet. They bought 11 Boeing 767-300 and they are set to start operating in 2022. Amazon news said

“Our goal is to continue delivering for customers across the U.S. in the way that they expect from Amazon, and purchasing our own aircraft is a natural next step toward that goal,” said Sarah Rhoads, Vice President of Amazon Global Air. “Having a mix of both leased and owned aircraft in our growing fleet allows us to better manage our operations, which in turn helps us to keep pace in meeting our customer promises.”

While talking about Amazon Air, they stated:

“Amazon Air plays a central role in delivering for customers by transporting items across longer distances in shorter time frames. The four aircraft purchased from WestJet in March are currently undergoing passenger to cargo conversion and will join Amazon Air’s network in 2021, and the seven aircraft from Delta will enter Amazon’s air cargo network in 2022. These fleet additions will ensure added capacity in Amazon Air’s network for years to come. The company will continue to rely on third-party carriers to operate these new aircraft.”

US bans more apps from China – Wechat and Alipay is on the list

Trump signs an order to ban 7 apps from operating in the US. These chinese apps are accused of violating users privacy. Although many US companies do the same, Trump started a trend of banning apps in mass in previous years. Later India too banned many chinese applications for political reasons.

President Trump’s order says “by accessing personal electronic devices such as smartphones, tablets, and computers, Chinese connected software applications can access and capture vast swaths of information from users, including sensitive personally identifiable information and private information.”

The order requires banning of 7 apps including Alipay, Wechat, Tencent QQ, CamScanner, SHAREit, VMate and WP Office.

So this is the end of today’s news about recent events in open source, *nix and technology. Thank you so much for reading. Continue discussion in the comment.

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