It’s Episode Twenty-three of Season Eight of the Ubuntu Podcast! Laura Cowen, Martin Wimpress, and Alan Pope are joined by Stuart Langridge!

In this week’s show:

We look at what’s been going on in the news:

We also take a look at what’s been going on in the community:

There are even events:

That’s all for this week, please send your comments and suggestions to: [email protected]
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4 Comments » for S08E23 – Glitter
  1. Will says:

    Hi, nice show! I just wanted to clarify some things discussed regarding Firefox add-ons:

    * Mozilla is implenting a mandatory signing policy in Firefox for add-ons.

    * Currently (version 40), Firefox just displays a warning by add-ons that are not signed. In the next version (41), it will disable unsigned add-ons unless you change a preference to allow them. In the version after that (42), the preference will be removed and there will be no way to enable unsigned add-ons.

    * For an add-on to be signed, it has to be uploaded to addons.mozilla.org and pass either an automatic review or a manual review (if it fails the automatic review). This review process is separate from the add-on store, so people like the EFF can still host add-ons on their own websites.

    * To be hosted on addons.mozilla.org, an add-on has to pass a manual review (more involved than the review process just for signing). These reviews are largely done by volunteers who have not been meeting demand recently. It can take months for an add-on to get through the queue and be looked at. Often an add-on will have one or two issues that do not comply with addons.mozilla.org’s policies and the add-on will be rejected. Then it will have to go through the queue again (so it can end up taking 6 months or more for an add-on to get full approval if it has a couple issues). This is why Privacy Badger is not on addons.mozilla.org (I think it is in the queue).

    * As an add-on developer, I am ambivalent about the new signing process. I hope it increases user security, but it does put an extra burden on developers. We will see what happens when Firefox 41 comes out and some add-ons get disabled.

    * The signing policy shifts the hurdle for bad people wanting to compromise Firefox from installing a bad add-on to installing a bad version of Firefox. On many systems, there are better safeguards in place to prevent modifying an installed application than there are to prevent a bad add-on being secretly installed into Firefox (that’s the main problem the signing policy is supposed to address).

  2. Will says:

    And the day after I post that comment, Mozilla drops this bombshell that makes it largely irrelevant: https://blog.mozilla.org/addons/2015/08/21/the-future-of-developing-firefox-add-ons/

    These are major changes that will break the majority of add-ons and just plain prevent the features of many of them. These changes will make Firefox likely give Firefox more performance and security but will make much less customizable. The main differentiating advantage of Firefox over Chromium (not Chrome, so that we’re comparing free software with free software) to me was this customizability. I’m not sure what the main differentiation will be now — are they going to make a browser that has better performance and security than the one with all of Google’s resources behind it?

  3. Fritz Cat says:

    So for you guys free speech is only important if it’s “acceptable” free speech and agrees with you. Oh my! Those unsavory projects! I have no idea what projects would be considered “unsavory”, do they have Nazi-simulator 2015 or something that I’m unaware? Some of us just value freedom more than others I suppose, I’d never seek to silence or blunt opposing viewpoints like github and apparently the Ubuntu podcast hosts choose. I’d let people voice their opinions and then attempt to show them where they’re wrong. I think you guys might want to consider a move to OS X so you aren’t offended by someones “unsavory” opinion. Ridiculous to supposedly promote “free software” and “free speech” and “free as in freedom” but want to eliminate anything that you find offensive. https://youtu.be/2bwGsOBTlhE

  4. Will says:

    It sounded like you were not totally in agreement about whether or not GitLab was fully open source. Their website is a little unclear. They do offer an enterprise version with extra features for more money, but it seems like the code for that version is open (I guess you pay either for using it as a hosted service or for support in using it on site):

    https://about.gitlab.com/2015/08/03/almost-everything-we-do-is-now-open/

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