Season 2 - Episode 2: Pining for Privacy


VPN discount, PineTab and PineBook Pro to launch this year, more news from Purism, Steam Play even better for the 0.82%, Lutris works with GOG games, new shiny Kodi, Gnome speed boost, Firefox decorated, designer Akira, update your boxen, HP supports LVFS. Ice cream, therefore I am.

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May contain mature references

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Pine64 revealed at FOSDEM, that they will release a tablet + a souped up PineBook Pro, OMG Ubuntu reports 😻. Prices are expected to be u-n-b-e-l-i-e-v-a-b-l-e (even though there's always a hefty shipping charge and maybe taxes).

  • To be available later this year
  • $79 (under €60)
  • 10.1" screen
  • 2GB RAM, 16GB storage, USB A 2.0 host, micro USB 2.0 OTG, microSD
  • Black plastic
  • Magnetic keyboard as an optional extra
PineBook Pro
  • To be available later this year
  • $199 (under €175)
  • 14" 1080p display
  • 6-core ARM chip
  • 4GB RAM, 64GB EMMC storage (slower than SSD, faster than HDD)
  • USB 3.0 and 2.0, USB C (incl. charging and video out)

Check out the OMG Ubuntu articles for more info about the PineTab and the PineBook Pro. If you want a Linux tablet now, UBports is available for the Nexus 7 (just be careful to get the supported version).

Not to be outdone, Purism revealed more info about the the PureOS Store.📱

  • Apps in the store will have badges depending on the app development status (i.e. "Beta").
  • They want to incentivize developers but don't say how
  • They plan to build it around Flatpak
  • They announced the Lollypop music player for laptops and the phone.
  • The phone itself is meant to have really futuristic stuff like user-replaceable battery and a headphone jack. BUT 1440x720 display and ONLY 3GB of RAM (that could change).

More about Librem 5 apps in the lower half of the product website. PureOS is not going to be the only choice of operating system on the phone, users will be able to install for example Plasma Mobile. Hopefully the Librem 5 won't follow the destiny of Firefox OS. They are also planning a subscription of ethical services bundle.

Steam Play now allows to add non Steam Windows games. Games that ship with their own native clients can now launch with Proton from inside Steam for Linux. According to reports some games actually perform better that way.🎮

Steam also released new stats for 2019, Linux is sitting flat at 0.82%. Gabe Newell, president of Steam makers Valve, on Steam, Windows and Linux. Some examples of non-games in the Steam store.

The Lutris open gaming platform has a new release, 0.5:

  • GOG service integration
  • revamped interface

The GOG Galaxy app.

Kodi 18 released.

  • Retroplayer gaming built in
  • Digital Rights Management decryption support 😱❔🤷
  • Live TV improvements
  • Mike has tried it, but couldn't get the TV remote working.

By the time of release, LibreELEC have already released a version based on Kodi 18. OpenELEC are still on 17.

Gnome speed enhancements for the 3.32 release due next month.💻 This is a very good news, since Gnome happens to be the default DE on many distros. Thank you, Gnome devs, Canonical devs and everyone else who contributed.

Firefox 65 is out now comes with:

  • Enhanced tracking protection: Simplified content blocking settings give users standard,
  • Support for the WebP
  • Enhanced security for macOS, Linux, and Android users via stronger stack smashing protection which is now enabled by default for all platforms. "Stack smashing" is a common security attack in which malicious actors corrupt or take control of a vulnerable program.👮
  • Firefox will now warn you when closing a window (regardless of whether you have automatic session restore enabled for restart).
  • Easier performance management: The revamped Task Manager page found at about:performance now reports memory usage for tabs and add-ons.

Also, Firefox 66 will come with client side decorations! Right now, users can enable this with a toggle switch in the Customize settings, from the next release it will be enabled by default.

Akira is to be a graphical interface design app for designers. The dev is running a Kickstarter campaign to pay full time devs for a few months + hardware + taxes. More info in a Linux Unplugged interview.💶

Akira the anime.

Update your boxen! Ubuntu security notices site mentions a tone of recent vulnerabilities, and they all look very scary, so update, people!☝️

HP joins in on the LVFS firmware update goodness. Richard Hughes, a LVFS developer, has previously called out HP for being "officially late". The vendor status page has details of vendor support.



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