LWDW 136: Noise Repellent

Linus takes it down a notch, Flatpaks invade Redmond, Pedro builds a Steambox and NEXTSPACE takes a NeXTEP. All this, plus your emails.

Special thanks to:
Freedompenguin.com (increased pledge)


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A weekly dose of all thing Linux and open source with a slice of Pi for good measure.



Colour key – Venn Pedro Jill

Linus chills out

  • Part of me (a large part) believes Linus is doing this as a “see what will happen” experiment.
  • Dude needs a break, let him have one.
  • Far as the CoC, Naleid said it best “A code of conduct should be a document that describes what will get you kicked out, rather than criteria for being allowed to stay. It is fundamentally against open ideology.”
    • ^
    • A CoC needs to establish with as little room for misunderstanding as possible exactly what is not allowed.
  • Everyone is human and I have no doubt most people even have a good understanding of common sense and will apply it liberally.
  • Codes of conduct which come in late should be really specific and thorough.
  • That’s not what this one is.
  • In fact, the wording of the whole thing is vague and problematic.
  • Someone needs to get a lawyer to look at it.
  • Sometimes getting a developer to STFU and listen requires nuking their ego from orbit.
  • However, that is something that can be done it private and not a mailing list.
  • Linus is one of the top influential technology giants in the world, along with Bill Gates and Steve Jobs, and as such it is envogue for him to openly admit his faults in public.  It looks good for the growing Linux community, for the tech community and the world at large.
  • I like how Jono Bacon put it in the article: “He isn’t a codebase, he is a human being, and bugs are harder to spot and fix in humans.”
  • And all of us in the Linux community understands this, we all have problems, whether its Autism Spectrum Disorder, Dyslexia, ADHD, social anxiety etc.  These seem to be the norm in our community, especially an uber smart one.


Libreoffice 6.6.1

  • Can I now import a 2MB png without it freezing for 2 minutes on a Ryzen 5 with an M.2 NVMe SSD?
  • LibreOffice 6.1.1 released, for early adopters, technology enthusiasts and power users.
  • Over 120 bug and regression fixes for the recently announced LibreOffice 6.1.
  • LibreOffice Draw menus have been reorganized, and now there is a new Page menu.
  • The online version of Libreoffice is still in development, but has a much improved user interface with the 6.6.1 release.
  • I downloaded and tested the AppImage and it worked great:  https://libreoffice.soluzioniopen.com/index.php/stable-2/



  • Bringing wobbly windows to GNOME because reasons.
  • Creating an agnostic compositing library every DE can use is a really good idea.
  • But this is isn’t it… This is a compositor-agnostic whizbang wooshy window animation library.
    • You of all people have a problem with this?
    • I feel like I keep saying this, I disable all the whizbang crap.
  • Is this KWin for GNOME?


Plasma 5.13

  • Nothing in this post gives me the sense that they acknowledged or at least fixed the constant crashiness of KWin or Plasmashell.
  • In fact, it looks to me like they’re completely ignoring the problem altogether.
  • Plasma Discover, the software center, added fwupd support for updating your firmware.
  • Added Snap channels.
  • A new Display Configuration widget for screen management, which is great for doing doing presentations and multi-monitor configuration.



  • It’s a NextSTEP desktop environment clone for Linux.
  • NEXTSPACE is an object oriented desktop environment that brings NeXTSTEP look and feel to Linux as close as possible to the original NeXT OS.
  • It uses the Window Maker X window manager which is my favorite window manager of all time!
  • And includes many updates that aren’t included in the main Window Maker GUI.  It has a Display Preferences menu and a media menu to mount and unmount drives.
  • It is only available for CentOS 7 right now.
  • GNUstep is a free implementation of OPENSTEP, which is base on NeXTSTEP, and its applications can be installed on any Linux distro or from the GNUstep Live CD/USB:   http://www.aiei.ch/gnustep/
  • I have been wanting a NeXTcube in my vintage computer collection for years, and had used one in my college years :-D


Chrome OS Inside

  • Basically this is a patchset for Chromium to allow it to better use Intel’s hardware acceleration via VAAPI.
  • Ozone-gbm doesn’t use X11 as the middle man to render the Chromium browser, instead bypassing it and using Intel GPU hardware acceleration directly which allows the browser to perform much faster.


Rebaged NUC

  • Base unit starts at 498,00 EUR, includes Intel Core i3-7100U (Dual-Core, 2x 2.40 GHz, 4 Threads, 3 MB Cache, 15 W TDP), 8 Gigs of RAM and 250 GB Samsung 860 EVO (M.2 SATAIII)
  • Comes preinstalled with Ubuntu, Ubuntu Budgie or OpenSUSE 15.



  • Yeah. Can we just get multi-touch on LibInput or replace it with something else, already?
  • Not being able to use multi-touch gestures on a MacBook touchpad has been an issue for a lot of Linux users.  The mtrack driver solves this.


A Hardware Thing

  • Pedro made a thing and you could technically use it as a HTPC so we get to talk about it.
  • Also want to mention a new category on our the webzone called A Hardware Thing.
  • I’m happy to report with minimal controller futzing, both Netflix and Amazon Prime video work perfectly on the SteamBox through the Steam Browser.
  • I and the whole LGC community are proud of Pedro’s SteamBox 360 adventures, and the beautifully crafted outcome paying attention to every detail both technically and artistically!


Noise repellent

  • Want to give this a little shout out since it just works™
  • If you are doing recordings and need to filter out background noise live *glares at Canada* this is the business.


Flatpak invades Redmond

  • Hows about we get Flatpaks and Snaps working correctly first?
  • That said, Windows is in need of a non-MS app repository.
    • A superior one at that.

Slice of Pi


  • Now you can now easily make a LEMP web server instead of a LAMP web server with your Raspberry Pi!
  • Just install Linux, Nginx, MySQL, and PHP.
  • Here is how you easily install Nginx . . .



  • Clever use of HID along with an RFID reader and card.
  • I can’t imagine it’s completely without some performance hit, but for regular desktop use you probably have more than enough CPU cycles to spare.



  • A stable base is often the best choice, in my opinion.
  • Keep everything as tried and true as possible except for what you’re actually trying to run, in this case KDE.
  • Though, I have neon in one of my laptops and I rebased from 16.04 to the 18.04 beta without an issue.

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