Google Blog: Come celebrate the art of indie games with us. “This year we will host three competitions for indie game developers from Japan, South Korea and several European countries. The top 20 creators in each region will be chosen to showcase their games at public events in Tokyo, Seoul and Warsaw. Players, industry experts and the Google Play team will vote to select the top 10, and from there, three winners for each regional contest will be crowned.”
Medium: Google’s Monopoly is Stifling Free Software. “Google has an undeniable monopoly on search, and a near-monopoly on web browsing software via Chrome and its forks. And even alternative browsers such as Mozilla’s Firefox reference Google’s Safe Browsing service to decide on the trustworthiness of downloads. Stopping the spread of malware is a laudible goal, but a consequence of this is directly harming free and open source software developers from being able to release their software without paying expensive certificate authority rent-seeking fees.”
The Conversation: Why all children must learn code. “Coding language develops the software that can effectively deal with problems and challenges – for instance, because of coding, people who couldn’t get a bank account can now keep, send and borrow money using mobile phones. It’s an important skill to have as countries develop. In the past four decades, several studies have assessed the effect of learning code on primary school children – usually between the ages of six and 13. In each case, the findings show that it is beneficial to children, irrespective of their career path later on in life.”
Northern Arizona University: Can open source software be gender-biased? Yes, say professors who are working to eliminate gender-biased ‘bugs’ . “The cycle of open source software (OSS) development and gender representation is, perhaps, unsurprising—women are vastly underrepresented among OSS developers. As a result, women miss out on development and professional opportunities, and as jobs in OSS development open up, women lack the experience to get them. And the cycle continues. It’s so pervasive that it’s likely built right into the software itself, say four researchers, which is an entirely separate problem—one they’re aiming to resolve through finding these bugs and proposing redesigns around them, leading to more gender-inclusive tools used by software developers.”
CyLab: This new tool for developers can help preserve app users’ privacy . “When writing the code for an app using Coconut, the plugin’s heuristics automatically detect when a request for user data is made, triggering a popup reminder to the developer to write an annotation explaining the reasons behind their request. Rather than requiring them to write one from scratch, developers have the option of choosing one from a list of pre-written annotations explaining the reason behind the request, such as, ‘Data collection for advertising,’ ‘Location-based game,’ or ‘Maps and navigation,’ among others.”
CNET: GitHub blocked developers in Iran, Syria and Crimea due to US sanctions. “Software development platform GitHub is essential to developers across the globe. Unfortunately for users in Iran, Syria and Crimea, access is getting squeezed, thanks to US trade law.”
TechCrunch: Twitter Developer Labs opens to all with release of first APIs. “In May, Twitter announced plans to launch its Twitter Developer Labs program, a way for app developers to sign up to experiment with pre-released beta APIs. The idea, the company explained at the time, is to allow developers to test new API products early and offer feedback. Today, Twitter says it’s introducing its first Twitter Developer Labs endpoints: GET/users and GET/tweets. These allow developers access to look up tweets and users by ID.” I appreciate TechCrunch also mentioning all the ways Twitter has been horrible to the developer community.