GitHub Launches New Sponsors Tool, Total War: THREE KINGDOMS Is Out on Linux, IBM Announces Expansion of its IBM Watson Decision Platform for Agriculture, Elisa 0.4.0 Released and NASA Deploys Astrobee Robots Running Ubuntu on the Space Station

News briefs for May 23, 2019.

GitHub launches a new tool called Sponsors that lets you make payments to open-source developers. Tech Crunch reports, that "Developers will be able to opt into having a 'Sponsor me' button on their GitHub repositories and open source projects will also be able to highlight their funding models, no matter whether that's individual contributions to developers or using Patreon, Tidelift, Ko-fi or Open Collective.

Feral Interactive announces that Total War: THREE KINGDOMS is out on Linux and macOS, the same day as the Windows release. The game was developed by Creative Assembly and is the first in the Total War series to be set in ancient China. It's available now from the Feral Interactive Store for $59.99, and you can watch the trailer here.

IBM announces global expansion of its IBM Watson Decision Platform for Agriculture. From the press release: "For the first time, IBM is providing a global agriculture solution that combines predictive technology with data from The Weather Company, an IBM Business, and IoT data to help give farmers around the world greater insights about planning, plowing, planting, spraying and harvesting."

Elisa 0.4.0 has been released. This version of the KDE community-developed music player has several new features, including improved grid views elements, support for libVLC and more. You can get it via the flathub package or the source code tarball.

NASA has deployed three "Astrobee" robots on the International Space Station to do house-keeping tasks. According to Linux Gizmos "the bots run Ubuntu/ROS and Android 7.1 on Snapdragon-based Inforce modules and a Wandboard and feature 3x payload bays, 6x cameras, and a touchscreen." The Astrobees are named Honey, Queen and Bumble. Linux Gizmos writes that their chief job "is to let astronauts remotely monitor equipment via the bots' cameras and mic while the they're working elsewhere on the ISS. They can also perform inventory and do other housekeeping chores, or act as a general-purpose floating touchscreen computer."

Jill Franklin is an editorial professional with more than 17 years experience in technical and scientific publishing, both print and digital. As Executive Editor of Linux Journal, she wrangles writers, develops content, manages projects, meets deadlines and makes sentences sparkle. She also was Managing Editor for TUX and Embedded Linux Journal, and the book Linux in the Workplace. Before entering the Linux and open-source realm, she was Managing Editor of several scientific and scholarly journals, including Veterinary Pathology, The Journal of Mammalogy, Toxicologic Pathology and The Journal of Scientific Exploration. In a previous life, she taught English literature and composition, managed a bookstore and tended bar. When she’s not bugging writers about deadlines or editing copy, she throws pots, gardens and reads.

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