NewsBits: PostgreSQL 10 RC1 and Java 9 GA

These are the database, Java, developer and security NewsBits for the week ending September 15th. In this edition:

  • PostgreSQL 10 goes release candidate.
  • Heat weighted load balancing for Scylla 2.0.
  • Elasticsearch updates last week's 5.6.
  • Going public, it's MongoDB Inc.
  • Getting bought, it's OrientDB.
  • Java 9 finally gets released.
  • And so, finally, does Java EE 8.
  • IBM donate J9 Java VM to Eclipse.
  • Oracle joins the CNCF, home of Kubernetes.
  • It's all Go for Intel's Clear Containers.
  • CoffeeScript 2 modernises a classic.
  • Privacy hole in iTerm2 closed.
  • Gas pump skimmers explained and defended against.
  • And finally, a new way of doing maps uses real travel time.

Here are the NewsBits:

Database bits

PostgreSQL - Version 10 of PostgreSQL has now entered release candidate stage with the release notes flagging changes. There's also the New in Postgres 10 wiki page which has summaries and links to more information on the new features. These include native partitioning, enhanced parallelism, and faster analytics queries. Further release candidates are expected before general availability.

Scylla - The Cassandra-compatible Scylla database is in the final stages of release candidacy for its version 2.0. In a blog posting the developers give us a look at one of the new features of 2.0: heat-weighted load balancing, which gives cold recently started nodes in a cluster less work. Cold nodes don't have a fully-loaded cache and can pull work away from hot nodes with a full cache which may be able to handle the query faster anyway. The blog dives deep into the details.

Elasticsearch - Hot on the heels of Elasticsearch 5.6.0 is Elasticsearch 5.6.1 and version-matched Kibana. The 5.6.1 release addresses some issues with indices which began life on an Elasticsearch 2.x release and have been migrated to eventually get to 5.6.x. 5.6.2's release notes are online too so that may be soon.

MongoDB - MongoDB Inc, the company, is going public. The full S-1 filing is available. Reports are the company is looking to raise $100M in the IPO.

OrientDB - The company behind the open source, multi-model OrientDB database has been acquired by CallidusCloud, a sales performance management company. The company already uses OrientDB in one of its products and says it plans to expand on that use.

(Java) Developer Bits

Java 9 - With a single announcement on the open JDK mailing list, the saga of Java 9's release, and many delays to that release, came to a close as it became generally available. The jdk.java.net/9 site now carries builds of OpenJDK for 64-bit Linux, while Oracle have licensed builds for Linux, macOS, Windows and SPARC.

Jigsaw, the project to modularize Java into 26 modules, has made it into the release and is probably the biggest internal change Java has seen since it was announced. Meanwhile, other Java features are going away, an end documented in Dustin Marx's blog including the end of the bundling of "Java DB" (which was really Derby DB) with the JDK.

Java EE - And also released as final, Java EE 8 and Glassfish 5.0 have made their debut in what is their last revision under Oracle's sole watch as the project is moved to the Eclipse Foundation. First order of work is probably to move the Java 8-based Java EE codebase to Java 9.

OpenJ9 - Meanwhile at the Eclipse Foundation, OpenJ9 has appeared. It's an alternative Java virtual machine which has nothing to do with Java 9 and more to do with a Smalltalk heritage. The project is a contribution to Eclipse from IBM.

Cloud Bits

CNCF - The Cloud Native Computing Foundation, home of Kubernetes, Prometheus, gRPC and other important modern cloud projects, has announced that Oracle has joined. The company will join as a Platinum CNCF member alongside Amazon, Cisco, CoreOS, Dell, Docker, Fujitsu, Google, Huawei, IBM, Intel, Joyent, Mesosphere, Microsoft, Pivotal, RedHat, Samsung, Supernap and VMWare.

Clear Containers - Intel's Clear Containers project has just released version 3.0 of the security-enhanced container project. Clear Containers take advantage of Intel's VT virtualization to enable hardening of guest operating systems with SELinux and seccomp. Version 3.0's been rewritten in Go (from C) and has already got some fans.

Developer Bits

CoffeeScript - CoffeeScript 2 is being served up now, all hot and fresh. CoffeeScript came to fame as an alternative mashup of languages which translated into JavaScript easily. But JavaScript has moved on and now CoffeeScript 2 sees it catch up, generating modern JavaScript and supporting the latest features while breaking relatively little CoffeeScript 1 code.

Security Bits

iTerm2 - Do you use the macOS terminal emulator iTerm2? You'll want to upgrade to the latest version, iTerm2 3.1.1, after it was found that a feature which looked for URLs in your terminal session was leaking your terminal contents to the Internet by default.

Skimmers - Ever wondered how a gas pump skimmer worked? Wonder no more as Sparkfun blogs in detail about how they work. And more usefully, they've made a free Android app which scans for Bluetooth devices and talks to them to determine how suspicious they are so you can sweep for skimmers. It is a good reminder that attacks can be enabled by some of the simplest, cheapest hardware out there, whether on a gas pump or on your network - and that countermeasures can be equally simple and cheap.

And Finally

Over at Mapbox, they've been coming up with a new kind of map. It's one that uses actual travel time and a radial projection to make it easy to find and compare the distance to locations. You can try the timemap online and enjoy the transition between it and an actual geographic map.

NewsBits. News in bits, every Friday at Compose.