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November 13 2017 Krack, Algoraves and maths software Meet

Posted on November 17, 2017
( 4 minute read )

Darren had brought some cakes for us to celebrate his birthday and mentioned the Krack vulnerability in WPA2. David S referred to the part of this press release which refers to the early release of a patch by OpenBSD and the exclusion of OpenBSD from early notification of future vulnerabilities and John commented that he had read that Microsoft had included a fix in their updates before the disclosure of the vulnerability. There is a summary of the issues on the Linux Foundation website but, essentially, patching one end of the connection appears to be all that is necessary.

Bernard introduced us to Algoraves in which people dance to music which is generated by a synthesiser interpreting the code which someone is writing in real time. Some people see it as performance art. Typically, the coder will use the open source SuperCollider synthesiser. A simpler alternative might be PySynth.

Bernard shared a demonstration he had seen at PyCon of FoxDot which uses Python with the SuperCollider synthesiser.

David mentioned the Sonic Pi synthesiser developed by the Raspberry Pi Foundation and the University of Cambridge Computer Lab. There is also the Hydrogen drum synthesiser and the Microbit synthesiser for which there is also more information.

Darren drew attention to the PCMag article about CIA monitoring of social media and to the US ban on Kaspersky which however, does not apply to the military according to ArsTechnica.

David C mentioned the problems he had had getting the anti-virus software off a friend’s Windows 10 computer and enabling Windows Defender and also his exploration of a Chromebook for Linda.

John H drew attention to the bug in Apple Mail which means that it sends some attachments as multipart/alternative rather than multipart/mixed. As multipart/alternative means that the content of the attachment is the same as the body, some email clients do not bother to display the attachment, assuming it to be a duplicate. Katie Floyd offers a fix for Apple users.

Tiring of all this technical chit-chat,

Bernard showed us Korean Beatboxer 'Bigman' Daeung Yun before

Darren drew us back to more technical topics with a question about the RPM version of GNU APL which appears to be one release behind the DEB version. He is thinking of using it for maths. So John pointed out that Gnumeric is the only spreadsheet worth using for maths and statistics as Fixing Statistical Errors in Spreadsheet Software and On the use of spreadsheets in statistical analysis demonstrate. It also has the best tools for creating and editing graphs.

David C mentioned that he had undergone some tests as part of a research programme into physical performance and received the data that this had generated but it could only properly be analysed using proprietary software!