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July 10 2018 Wayland, postmarketOS, browsers, cheating, IT Stuff and Press Reader Meet

Posted on July 11, 2018
( 5 minute read )

Brian asked about Wayland which did not seem to work well with Cairo Dock; John said that Wayland with KDE Plasma was an option in openSUSE Leap 15.0 but it did not work well yet.

Brian also said he needed some help using Lua with MQTT and Kriss and Shi later turned up and were able to help him.

He also asked about postmarketOS, an OS based on Alpine Linux but intended for smartphones. A quick search revealed that it is still under development.

John picked up on Mike’s comment at the last meeting that there had been an outage at the London Stock Exchange which uses SUSE. John had followed this up and it had been the first outage since 2011 and so people had been fairly relaxed about it.

SUSE itself is being sold by MicroFocus as a going concern to EQT Partners, a Swedish investment group which specialises in investing in software companies. Under MicroFocus details of SUSE’s performance have been published and these show that it is about one seventh the size of RedHat and that it had 13% growth last year.

As he had it open John began his survey of browsers with Falkon, formerly Qupzilla, which has been taken into KDE as a replacement for Konqueror. Konqueror was a combined web browser and file manager which had been around in KDE since 2000; after the release of the Dolphin file manager, development of Konqueror slowed and a decision was made to take over Qupzilla, rename it and add Konqueror features, a process which has so far led to a lot of new configuration options together with some of the features of Konqueror being migrated to it.

He then introduced Lynx, a command line browser dating from 1992. It has survived because it is incorporated in many screen readers for people with disabilities. It is also invaluable for connecting to the Internet, say, from a server which has no graphical interface. Kriss added that it can also be used for testing server connections.

Next he showed w3m, originally a Japanese alternative to Lynx whose name represents a translation of the Japanese name where w3 means www. Though much the same as Lynx, John prefers it because it displays the HTML alt attributes, used to explain what an image shows to people using screen readers, more clearly.

John then showed the Web browser which he had found in openSUSE Leap but knew little about it or where it came from. [It turns out that it is Epiphany under a new name!]

This was followed by Vivaldi which is a fork of Opera by those dissatisfied with the direction in which Opera is going.

Finally, David had mentioned, among several others, elinks, another command line browser, which John demonstrated.

David then introduced us to Embracing the Kobayashi Maru: Why you should teach your students to cheat by Gregory Conti and James Carol which prompted a discussion on various ways in which to detect cheats and to evade being detected.

He also briefly commented on the Python project he had been creating to track software vulnerabilities which led to John opening up the BradLUG page on which this had been recorded the previous month and then the newly created IT Stuff website for which we have a link on the BradLUG site.

Brian mentioned that Bradford Library allows you to read journals using the Press Reader app; these include the Ubuntu magazine, Full Circle, MagPi and HackSpace.