LWDW 302: Linus-proofing Linux

KDE gets a GNOME-like overview, speedy firmware updates on Linux, why Flatpaks are the future, and GoXLR on Linux adds Linus-proof instructions.



00:00 Intro
06:05 Linus proofing Linux
13:30 GNOME-like overview for KDE
18:55 Speeding up fwupd
23:05 Flatpak is not the future
32:35 German government switches to Linux
38:30 New executive director for Rust
45:45 Po-powered autonomous transport

Making things Linus proof


  • This is not necessarily a bad thing. 
  • A developer response of “git gut n00b” does not fly when it comes from someone high-profile. 
  • It raises the question, where do you draw the line?
  • “These commands must be executed in the console. To do this, open the terminal, paste the following lines and press enter:” . . .


Plasma gnome


  • Honestly, I think this will be a great addition to the Plasma desktop.
  • The GNOME 40 full screen overview feature I have come to quite enjoy.
  • And since KDE is so customizable, and takes some of the best features from other X window managers and DEs, this makes sense.
  • And makes the user experience going from GNOME to KDE a bit more uniform.
  • Big emphasis on the Activities that KDE offers.
  • Now complementing it with an overview similar to what you get when tap the Windows/Super key in GNOME.
  • This effectively combines the open applications, virtual desktops, and file/application search into one screen, much like GNOME does it.
    • If you used the Homerun applet in the past, this is just that but official.
  • It’s effectively adding functionality where KDE previously didn’t provide anything out of the box.
  • You know the opposite of GNOME, which removes functionality where it used to have it.


Speedy fwupd


  • Our favorite open source daemon for managing the installation of firmware updates on Linux, FWUPD has a new release.
  • FWUPD 1.7.2 is now available, with many fixes, and a much faster and smaller daemon.
  • Tweaks to the compiler flags to reduce the install size by around 300 Kb.
  • Speeds up the daemon startup by ~40% by doing less at startup.
  • This is following the Fwupd 1.7 and 1.7.1 releases which added support for:
    • Logitech Devices with the unified battery feature
    • The Dell Atomic Doc
    • The HP Thunderbolt Dock G4
    • The Wacom 3rd-gen Intuos BT.
    • And the Steelseries Stratus wireless gaming controllers.
  • Better case insensitivity support to work around issues with firmware not matching because the casing was different.
  • Not broke, don’t fix is my approach to firmware. 
  • That said, knowing fwup exists provides the good feels. 


Our flat future 


  • I was on board with the highly inflammatory title for the sake of calling attention to a big problem.
  • As much as I tolerate flatpaks, I agree that the current approach to the runtime is less than ideal.
  • And I do agree with the bigger problem that’s being raised here.
  • What I have a problem with is this:
  • “It’s true that in the past, open source library ABIs were flaky. I’m here to tell you that you no longer have to be afraid.”
  • I call shenanigans!
  • Unless it’s just poorly worded and the author means that over the past 5-ish years everything will still be perfectly usable regardless of the usual round of ABI changes in another 5.
  • Because the way that’s worded it’s just not true. 
  • I have downloaded my entire Humble Bundle game collection and there are several games which don’t run at all unless you have an entire runtime of libraries from that period.
  • The author brings up a lot, and I mean a lot, of great points as the article is quite lengthy.
  • I like this one:
    • “An app store based on a sandboxing technology for native apps is a reasonable idea.”
    • “But for small apps and games from independent developers, a proper sandboxed app marketplace can in theory increase their reach. It can eliminate much of the trust that would otherwise be necessary to run them on your computer and can bring native apps closer to the ease of use of web apps.”
  • Flatpaks have solved the problem of library fragmentation and app distribution on Linux.
  • It’s not pretty but it’s true. 
  • It’s a pragmatic solution for an imperfect world.
  • It’s like a DMG filled with penguins. 
  • What’s the alternative, open build service?
  • That said, we are no longer in the world of doubling performance and memory size every few years. 


Danke Office


  • They are using Jitsi. 
  • By the end of 2026, Microsoft Office is to be replaced by LibreOffice on all 25,000 computers used by civil servants and employees (including teachers).
  • RIP LiMux. 
  • No Linux distribution has been chosen yet to use as a standard.
  • How does libreoffice calc compare with excel?
  • The north-German state of Schleswig-Holstein 4 Commandments of Trusted Internet Services states:
    • “A service you use must be available from many providers
    • It must be possible to move your data from one to the other
    • The Service must (also) be available as software
    • The Software must be available as Open Source”
  • Also, this time they are doing it right by switching users away from MS Office to LibreOffice on Windows to let them get used to their new open source software on the Windows OS they are used to using.
  • Then switching them from Windows to Linux.
  • And the transition will be done slowly.
  • They also have older computers in use that won’t work well with Windows 11, and Linux, of course, is optimal for.
  • I wonder how much Microsoft is willing to “pay” this time to revert that decision.


Rusty Ex 


  • Big kudos to Rebecca Rumbul.
  • She’s now in charge of Rust, I don’t envy that position.
  • There’s also a push from big tech to get Rust compute in “The Cloud”, which will have absolutely no side effects on people’s trust and those who see Rust as the spritely little up-and-coming language.
  • Congratulations Rebecca!
  • This needed to happen for the Rust programming language to be taken seriously in the tech industry, especially now that:
    • Linux drivers are being written in Rust.
    • Microsoft is using Rust to rewrite some Windows components.
    • And the Internet Security Research Group (ISRG) Prossimo project is seeking to secure fundamental internet programs and protocols by rewriting them in Rust.
  • The entire mod team resigned on Monday. 
  • I don’t believe the two are connected in any way but something boiled over. 

Slice of Pi

Remote Cooler


  • 3D printers and open sauce software turn this Pi into a python RC car thing.
  • €600 if you want to just buy the thing
  • €45 for the PCBs and Android app, if you can/want to DIY the rest.
  • I definitely can see this as a cost effective way to transport food, water, medicine, first aid kits etc. to people in emergency situations, such as in earthquakes, or someone trapped in a building.
  • I <3 the name “Newone.”  Because if you create a second one it will be the “Newone” and the first one will be the “Oldone” LOL

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