Monday, 29 May 2017

Gollvm: Google Working On LLVM-Based Go Compiler

It seems Google is working on a new Go language compiler that's making use of the LLVM compiler infrastructure.

Gollvm has been making rounds this weekend as a new, experimental Go compiler leveraging LLVM. Its Google-hosted code repository says:

LLVM IR generation “middle end” for LLVM-based go compiler. This is currently very much in a prototype phase, with a fairly brittle/fragile build process, so please take careful note of the setup instructions.

Gollvm (name still not finalized) is layered on top of LLVM, much in the same way that things work for “clang” or “compiler-rt”: you check out a copy of the LLVM source tree and then within that tree you check out additional git repos.

You'll need to have an up-to-date copy of cmake on your system (3.6 vintage).

Interesting to see yet another language making use of LLVM, at least in experimental form, given Google's continued interest in LLVM. Those wanting to learn more can see

the gollvm Git tree

. It will be interesting to see in the future if they decide to make the Gollvm compiler more official or as an eventual replacement to its current compiler.

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Using Photogrammetry for Real Time Projects

Guilherme Rambelli has shared a breakdown of the latest personal project he did that shows the process of using photogrammetry to create 3D assets for real time use. The guide proves that it’s actually not that difficult to start using this approach. So, study this breakdown, grab your camera and create your first scanned assets for games and real time projects. 

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Procedurally Generating Random Medieval Cities

Procedurally Generating Random Medieval Cities

With procedural content generation, you build data algorithmically rather than manually — think Minecraft worlds, replete with all the terrains and mobs you’d expect, but distributed differently for every seed. A lot of games use algorithms similarly to generate appropriate treasure and monsters based on the level of the character.

Game developer [Oleg Dolya] built a random city generator that creates excellently tangled maps. You select what size you want, and the application does the rest, filling in each ward with random buildings. The software also determines the purpose of each ward, so the slum doesn’t have a bunch of huge mansions, but instead sports a tangle of tiny huts. [Oleg] shows a little of how the application works, using polygons created with the guard towers serving as vertices. You can learn more about the project on Reddit.

As new as this project is, it’s limited. All the maps feature a walled community, each has one castle within a bailey, and none of the cities includes a river or ocean port. [Oleg] designed it to make cool-looking maps, not necessarily accurate or historically realistic ones. That said, he’s already tweaked the code to reduce the number of triangular buildings. Next up, he wants to generate shanty towns outside the city walls.

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Enterprise vs Startup Journey to Cloud

$ Enterprise vs Startup Journey to Cloud

Enterprise vs Startup Journey to Cloud geek comic

Comics Related

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Friday, 26 May 2017

Firefox Marketing Head Expresses Concerns Over Google's Apparent 'Only Be On Chrome' Push

Eric Petitt, head up Firefox marketing, writing in a blog: I use Chrome every day. Works fine. Easy to use. There are multiple things that bug me about the Chrome product, for sure, but I'm OK with Chrome. I just don't like only being on Chrome. And that's what Chrome wants. It wants you to only use Chrome. Chrome is not evil, it's just too big for its britches. Its influence on the internet economy and individuals is out of balance. Chrome, with 4 times the market share of its nearest competitor (Firefox), is an eight-lane highway to the largest advertising company in the world. Google built it to maximize revenue from your searches and deliver display ads on millions of websites. To monetize every... single... click. And today, there exists no meaningful safety valve on its market dominance. Beyond Google, the web looks more and more like a feudal system, where the geography of the web has been partitioned off by the Frightful Five. Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Apple and Amazon are our lord and protectors, exacting a royal sum for our online behaviors. We're the serfs and tenants, providing homage inside their walled fortresses. Noble upstarts are erased or subsumed under their existing order. (Footnote: Petitt has made it clear that the aforementioned views are his own, and not those of Mozilla.)
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Android co-founder teases smartphone reveal date on Twitter (updated)

Android co-founder Andy Rubin teased us with a photo of his new smartphone this past March. The glimpse was small, showing only a corner of the new phone made by Rubin's company, Essential Products, Inc. The company jumped on Twitter today to announce that "something big" was coming May 30. Assuming the hype machine is in full force, this likely means that we will get a glimpse of the Essential smart phone in five days.

Essential will focus on a line up of connected tablets, smartphones and mobile software, according to early reports. The smartphone prototypes are reportedly larger than Apple's iPhone 7 Plus and feature bezel-free sreens and ceramic backings. The reports also say that the Essential team is working on a feature similar to Apple's 3D Touch and magnetic charging capabilities, which seems to position Rubin's new company as iPhone competition rather than other Android-powered hardware. We hope to find out more next week.


Update: A followup tweet reveals a shadowy outline, but with a little editing appears to show a 360-degree camera add-on that's similar to the old Sidekick camera (a previous Rubin project). Looking at a recent tweet of Rubin's appears to confirm the camera, showing a colleague working on some sort of surround camera setup.

Via: The Verge

Source: Essential (Twitter)

Read the full article here by Engadget

Raspberry Pi to merge with CoderDojo

The Raspberry Pi was designed to provide an ultra-cheap way to encourage schoolchildren to learn to code just as they had back in the 1980s and 90s. Although the uncased credit card sized computer has since found a highly appreciative audience outside of education, kids -- the computer scientists of the future -- remain a priority. CoderDojo is a global network of coding clubs for children aged from seven to 17 with the aim being to provide a safe and social place for kids to learn to program. It’s clear the two foundations have similar aims, which is why it’s… [Continue Reading]

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Bonus Panel:

Vacation Bonus Panel

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Volvo wants to automate your weekly garbage pickup


Volvo is working on a project that it hopes will make the job of garbage pickup safer and easier for sanitation workers. If successful, it will also reduce the number of workers required to complete each route.

By automating the truck’s bin-to-bin travel, the worker doesn’t have to continually get in and out of the cab to arrange bins or manually load them into the back of the truck. The truck essentially drives itself, freeing the driver up to handle other important tasks safely.

See also: Columbus’ smart city win may lead to smart trucks

Today in the United States, many sanitation trucks are fitted with an arm that picks up specially-designed cans and dumps them into the back before placing them back in position. A human driver is required to steer the truck into place and deploy the arm. Another human occupant is required to correct any bins that are improperly aligned for the mechanical arm.

Many departments still have manual trucks that require sanitation workers to lift trash bags/bins and empty them by hand. This means getting in and out of the cab or riding on the back with only a handle to keep them on board.

An automated, self-navigating truck means less manpower required to complete a route. It also puts less strain on the arms and knees of workers as they won’t have to continually enter and exit the cab or cling to the back of a moving truck.

How it Works

The Volvo Trucks include similar self-driving sensors and to the ones you will find in autonomous cars being developed. Using GPS and sensors, it maps out a new route the first time it is taken through a neighborhood. After the first initial introductory route, the truck is able to learn the route, including any obstacles or stops it needs to make.

The driver then can step out of the cab and, with the push of a button, direct the truck to drive to the next house. The truck will then drive itself to the destination without any need of human intervention. If a new obstacle appears, it will identify it and navigate around it.

The driver can essentially follow the truck through the neighborhood on foot, emptying bins or arranging them as needed. No more endless climbing in and out of the cab at every stop.

Unless you live in Sweden, you probably won’t see Volvo’s autonomous refuse truck driving down your street any time soon. For now, it remains a pilot program in coordination with Renova, a Swedish waste management company. This pilot is expected to run throughout 2017. Additional research and development is expected for the next several years.

After that, you might just start seeing a garbage truck without a driver in the cab stop in front of your home.

The post Volvo wants to automate your weekly garbage pickup appeared first on ReadWrite.

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Thursday, 25 May 2017

Windows Switch To Git Almost Complete: 8,500 Commits and 1,760 Builds Each Day

An anonymous reader quotes a report from Ars Technica: Back in February, Microsoft made the surprising announcement that the Windows development team was going to move to using the open source Git version control system for Windows development. A little over three months after that first revelation, and about 90 percent of the Windows engineering team has made the switch. The Windows repository now has about 4,400 active branches, with 8,500 code pushes made per day and 6,600 code reviews each day. An astonishing 1,760 different Windows builds are made every single day -- more than even the most excitable Windows Insider can handle.
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Only 90s Kids Will Appreciate This Prototype

Wednesday, 24 May 2017

Four short links: 24 May 2017

Travel Mode, Justice Data, Threat Dragon, and Voice Editing

  1. 1Password Travel Mode -- enable Travel Mode, and all devices not marked Safe For Travel are deleted from your devices. There's no indicator to let border agents know that Travel Mode is enabled.
  2. Measures for Justice -- collects data on justice systems in several states, funded by Gates and Zuckerberg foundations. As Bach says, “Justice in America happens in 3,000 counties, each with its own justice system.” (via Wired)
  3. OWASP Threat Dragon -- open source threat modeling tool from OWASP. It can be used as a standalone desktop app for Windows, MacOS, and Linux or as a web application. (via Tech Beacon)
  4. More Detail on Adobe's Voice Editing Software -- VoCo is based on an optimization algorithm that searches the voice recording and chooses the best possible combinations of phonemes (partial word sounds) to build new words in the user’s voice. To do this, it needs to find the individual phonemes and sequences of them that stitch together without abrupt transitions. It also needs to be fitted into the existing sentence so that the new word blends in seamlessly. Words are pronounced with different emphasis and intonation depending on where they fall in a sentence, so context is important. [...] In case the synthesized word isn’t quite right, VoCo offers users several versions of the word to choose from. The system also provides an advanced editor to modify pitch and duration, allowing expert users to further polish the track.

Continue reading Four short links: 24 May 2017.

Read the full article here by Four Short Links - O'Reilly Media

The largest Git repo on the planet

Over the past 3 months, we have largely completed the rollout of Git/GVFS to the Windows team at Microsoft. As a refresher, the Windows code base is approximately 3.5M files and, when checked in to a Git repo, results in a repo of about 300GB. Further, the Windows team is about 4,000 engineers and the engineering system produces 1,760 daily "lab builds" across 440 branches in addition to thousands of pull request validation builds. All 3 of the dimensions (file count, repo size and activity), independently, provide daunting scaling challenges and taken together they make it unbelievably challenging to create a great experience. Before the move to Git, in Source Depot, it was spread across 40+ depots and we had a tool to manage operations that spanned them. As of my writing 3 months ago, we had all the code in one Git repo, a few hundred engineers using it and a small fraction (

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Windows switch to Git almost complete: 8,500 commits and 1,760 builds each day

Arcan 0.5.2 Released: That Display Server Built On A Game Engine, Now Tackling VR

Arcan 0.5.2 has been released as the newest version of the open-source display server project

built in part using a game engine

that has also been working on

X.Org and Wayland compatibility


Arcan currently describes itself as "

a powerful development framework for creating virtually anything from user interfaces for specialized embedded applications all the way to full-blown standalone desktop environments. At its heart lies a robust and portable multimedia engine, with a well-tested and well-documented Lua scripting interface. The development emphasizes security, debuggability and performance -- guided by a principle of least surprise in terms of API design.


Arcan 0.5.2 features a reworked LED subsystem, accelerated graphics improvements, initial HMD/VR supoport but it's still early on in development, a new "Waybridge" Wayland protocol service, Xarcan as an X.Org Server with a SHMLF driver back-end, improved SDL support, and a wide-range of other work.

More details on Arcan 0.5.2 via the change-log listed via


while a whole lot more on the innovative work happening around Arcan can be found via

this blog post


Read the full article here by Phoronix

Clear Linux Switches From Xfce To GNOME, Benchmarks

The Intel-developed high-performance Clear Linux operating system has decided to shift their desktop focus from Xfce to GNOME.

For those using this rolling-release, performance-minded distribution, the change-over happened a few days ago with GNOME becoming the default desktop environment while Xfce is still bundled via the os-utils-gui bundle for the time being.

Originally they made use of Xfce for it being lightweight and easier to package, but in seemingly realizing its somewhat stagnate development and plans for making use of Wayland, they are now focusing on GNOME. With the switch-over to GNOME also comes many of the GNOME desktop components being packaged in Clear Linux bundles, making the distribution a bit more useful as a desktop/workstation platform rather than just for cloud/container/server applications.

The experience in using GNOME on Clear Linux has been stable and they are making use of the upstream GNOME 3.24 packages with a relatively stock package set. GNOME Shell is the default via GDM while the GNOME Flashback session is also available for those wishing to use the more classic/Metacity experience. With the new desktop stack, they are also now starting GDM by default rather than requiring users to run "startx" each time as was previously the case.

Curious about the performance impact of changing over the desktops, I ran some Intel HD Graphics tests using the latest Clear Linux release as of yesterday. Xfce 4.12 vs. GNOME Shell 3.24 was compared along with the GNOME Flashback session. Clear Linux 15430 shipped with the Linux 4.11.1 kernel, X.Org Server 1.19.3, and Mesa 17.2-dev as the most noteworthy components for this graphics comparison. Tests were done on an Intel Xeon E3-1245 v5 Skylake box featuring HD Graphics P530.

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Rick and Morty comic is coming from the guys who brought you Firewatch

Now that’s a collab

An upcoming issue of the Rick and Morty comic has an impressive list of of names behind it. Sean Vanaman and Olly Moss, whose previous collaboration was Firewatch, are among the creators who worked on issue #29, due out in August.

Vanaman announced the project on Twitter in a brief post. In addition to saying that artist Olly Moss had joined him for the issue, the Campo Santo co-founder shared one of its covers.

The warm color palette should be a tip-off that Moss served as cover artist for this variant. We have to say that Rick, who’s both hapless teen Morty’s drunk uncle and a spacefaring mad scientist, has never looked better than in this illustration.

Moss has won acclaim for his work outside of Firewatch, for which he helped define its visual style. He’s also illustrated covers for the Harry Potter books, drawn posters for the Oscars and crafted a series of Star Wars prints based on the original trilogy.

Still, we’re partial to the look of Firewatch. The narrative-focused adventure game was one of Polygon’s Games of the Year in 2016, with its breathtaking aesthetic one of its biggest assets.

Oni Press hasn’t announced a firm release date yet for issue #29, but the Rick and Morty comics typically hit bookstores around the end of each month. Keep an eye out for late August to pick this cover up.

Read the full article here by Polygon