This week’s Tech news was dominated by stories that show how intricately tech (big tech and open source alike), governments, and societies are tied together. The subtext in these stories is the clash of culture, individual and group goals amplified by tech, for better and for worse.
Furthermore, the Tech news stories demonstrate some of the ways that we can help create a Tech culture that matters, that actually does much more than what it’s told to. Lerna relicensing its project earlier this week to protest ICE (they rolled back on that decision today), Facebook banning Myanmar military personnel over fake news, and (alongside Twitter) taking down fake accounts to prevent cyber interference in US midterms, are all examples of how software organizations can play a part in addressing wider societal issues and problems.
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In other Tech news
And here are other things that happened in Tech news this week.
Sangoma Technologies is acquiring Digium Incorporation
Sangoma Technologies Corporation has entered into a definitive agreement on August 23, 2018, to acquire all of the outstanding shares of Digium, Inc. This transaction is supposed to add meaningful sales, create market leadership, and increase recurring revenue materially. Read more on Sangoma Blog.
The next version of .NET Standard will be versioned as 2.1
The size of the API surface feels incremental, thus it’s the most natural choice after. It is an obvious choice when looked at purely from .NET Standard and underlines messaging that .NET Standard and .NET Core are versioned independently. Read more on Github.
YouTube launches ‘Time watched’ stats and central controls for Digital Wellbeing menu on Android/iOS
YouTube is rolling out “Time watched” stats along with centralized controls for Digital Wellbeing features like break reminders and notification management. Read more on 9TO5Google.
Twitter removes a total to 770 accounts linked Russian political meddling
Twitter has suspended a total of 770 accounts for “coordinated inauthentic behavior.” These accounts were generally networks of independent outlets that were in fact controlled centrally by Russia and Iran. Facebook has also successfully taken down 652 fake accounts and pages that published political content. Read more on Techcrunch.
Facebook plans to power global operations with 100% renewable energy by the end of 2020
Facebook is on track to be one of the largest corporate purchasers of renewable energy. It is also committing to reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 75% and powering its global operations with 100% renewable energy by the end of 2020. Read more on Facebook newsroom.
Andrew Moore steps down as dean of CMU’s School of Computer Science
Andrew Moore is stepping down from his role as dean at Carnegie Mellon University’s School of Computer Science, having served as dean since August 2014. He is leaving to pursue a new professional opportunity. Read more on Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
Bernie Sanders calls out Jeff Bezos for poor treatment of Amazon workers
Bernie Sanders called out Jeff Bezos for poor treatment of Amazon workers. In a rare move, the company fired back saying Sanders’s allegations of low wages and indecent work conditions are “inaccurate and misleading.” Read more at Vox.
Artificial Intelligence helps Schools monitor students’ mental health
With the help of mental-health experts, the company trained a machine-learning algorithm called GoGuardian which flags content most closely associated with potential harm, like searches for suicide methods. Read more on Axios.
California Net Neutrality Passes State Assembly
After a long and hard-fought battle, California’s Assembly passed S.B. 822, the net neutrality bill. In a bipartisan vote of 61-18, S.B. 822 passed the Assembly. Now it needs to pass the Senate again. Read more on EFF.
Java is still available at zero-cost
With Java 9 and the six-monthly release cycle, free support for the project is now much more tightly controlled. Oracle announced that there will be no more free Java SE 8 updates for commercial use after January 2019. For individual personal use, public updates for Oracle Java SE 8 will be available at least till December 2020. Read more on Stephen Colebourne blog.
Linux kernel developers criticize Intel’s initial disclosure of the Meltdown and Spectre CPU vulnerabilities.
This week at the Open Source Summit North America, one of the world’s leading Linux kernel developers took issue with Intel’s initial disclosure of the Meltdown and Spectre CPU vulnerabilities. Spectre, which exploits the speculative execution mechanism employed in modern processor chips and has recently targeted Intel, AMD, and ARM. Read more on eWEEK.
Other new tool releases and announcements this week
For details on this week’s major tool releases and announcements, check out this week’s newsletter. Below are more tool updates that happened this week.
Distillery 2.0 released
Distillery 2.0 has been released with runtime configuration. better support for custom appups, support for generating PID files, improved errors and better feedback from the CLI and more. Read more on Dockyard.
A new Vulkan-based GPGPU computing framework
Vuh is a new Vulkan-based GPGPU computing framework. Vuh aims to reduce the boilerplate to (a reasonable) minimum in most common GPGPU computing scenarios. The ultimate goal is to beat OpenCL in usability, portability and performance. Read more on Github.
Raspberry Pi Power over Ethernet (PoE) hat is now out
Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ has a new board with the ability to be powered through Power over Ethernet (PoE) with a HAT. Now the PoE HAT is on sale. The HAT connects to the Raspberry Pi 3B+ 0.1” headers: the 40-way GPIO; and the new 4-pin header near the USB connectors, which allows you to power the system using your Ethernet cable. Read more on Raspberry blog.
Introducing F2, an elegant, interactive and flexible charting library for mobile
F2 is a free and open-source modern charting library, released under MIT license. The aim of F2 is helping developers to create interactive visualizations for mobile devices more easier. Read more on medium.
Databot, a new Python Data-driven programming framework
Databot is a high-performance Data-driven programming framework with paralleled in coroutines and ThreadPool. It also includes Type- and content-based route function. Read more on Github.
NVIDIA Tesla V100 GPUs are now generally available
NVIDIA Tesla V100 GPUs with NVLink is now generally available. V100 together with our K80, P100, and P4 GPUs, are all great for speeding up many CUDA-powered compute and HPC workloads. Read more on Google cloud blog.
Scala 2.13.0-M5 has been released
billboard.js 1.6.0 is now released
Billboard 1.6 comes with 10 new features and 19 bug fixes including changes to themes, dasharray for regions, enhancement on custom data point, and more. Read more on medium.