03.03.09

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Links 03/03/2009: Linux Gets Thumbs-up in Phones, New ARM/Linux Gadget

Posted in News Roundup at 11:03 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • HMRC is getting the message

    I guess pretty much all businesses in the UK got this today, the HMRC Employer pack. It contains a CD ROM, the CDROM supports Linux.

  • Funny And Fun Wallpapers: Linux And Unix Humor On A Monday

    NOTE: Some of the pictures have been trimmed by my column width. Not so much so that I want to fuss over them all. They’re all available at the site linked to above :)

  • 25 Top 3D Linux Games

    One of CHIP-India’s forum members, Sujith Poojari had posted a link to 25 Top 3D games for Linux. Some of them I’ve already played like Armagetron Advanced, BZFlag, Sauerbraten, Scorched 3D, TORCS while some others unknown to me, such as Racer(been playing it recently, good graphics! controls need refinement though), PlaneShift etc. So enjoy these games and have a blast!

  • Ubuntu usage in Ampang Parliament Office

    Thanks to SweeMeng, I found this blog entry by JomLinux, which featured a YouTube video of Mohd Fahmi walking through some machines he set up for the office of Ampang’s Member of Parliament. What is interesting is that he is the Secretary for the MP and was given the mandate to fix up the IT systems of the office given a rather restrictive budget.

  • Linux gazette March 2009

    # Away Mission – 2008 in Review – part 2, by Howard Dyckoff
    # The Unbearable Lightness of Desktops: IceWM and idesk, by Ben Okopnik
    # Joey’s Notes: Bash shell basics, by Joey Prestia
    Our monthly column of basic Linux advice and education
    # SCaLE 7 Speed-through, by Kat Tanaka Okopnik
    A brief con report for the Southern California Linux Expo (SCaLE)

  • Virtualization soars on Big Blue Power boxes

    The overall adoption rate for Power6-based servers in the fourth quarter rose a little bit to 66 per cent of all machines, according to Handy, which is up a little bit from the 64 per cent attach rate on new systems in the second quarter of 2008. Overall adoption of the logical partitioning hypervisor came to 21 per cent of machines, for all System p boxes running AIX or Linux back in the second quarter of 2007.

  • Welcome to LinuxLink

    As someone who has used and written about Linux since shortly after its creation in the early nineties, I’m personally very excited to be launching LinuxLink today, and I hope you’ll join us often as we explore and celebrate the massive and ever-growing world of open source. Thank you for being a part of this blog. We’re looking forward to working with you.

  • Linux works out of the box.

    One of good things said about OS X is that OS X works out of the box. But it doesn’t work out of the box on any hardware – it works out of the box *on mac hardware*.

    I believe same can be just as well said about Linux: It works out of the box… on mac-level hardware :-)

    Or, to be exact, Linux generally works out of the box on quality hardware.
    If you stay away from obscure cheap crap (or expensive crap), and get distro that is not too fundamentalist about open source and includes closed source drivers (such as mandriva), everything works “out of the box” (as in you put livecd, boot, and voila).

  • Using Gentoo Linux in K-12 School’s Computer Lab

    GHCA recently updated all their computers to run the Gentoo distribution of the Linux operating system. This video interviews system administrator Michael Surran, exploring the details as to why the school switched to Gentoo and how Gentoo is used to improve productivity and functionality.
    Of particular interest is the use of distributed compiled computing (distcc) among the 20 Athlon computers to greatly speed the software building process.

  • Interview with Liz Danzico – User Experience

    Scott: There’s an interesting sense that some people see Shuttleworth in–sort of the keeper of the hip version of Linux that thinks about UI. He doesn’t always think about the Kernel, but yet I haven’t seen too many people ask themselves, “What more could he do?”

    Liz: Remember the book “Paradox of Choice?” I interviewed Barry Schwartz once, and I recall asking him about what was needed in editorials. His perspective, at least when I interviewed him about a year ago, was that “We’re not coming up with better tools, or better search engines, or better filters for our data. We’re actually going to human editors for the work that we’re doing.”

  • Kernel Space

    • LLVM 2.5 Released, Receives Numerous Improvements

      The LLVM (Low-Level Virtual Machine) still isn’t a big competitor to GCC since the Clang compiler front-end remains unfinished, but the LLVM folks have issued a version 2.5 release. LLVM 2.5 is made up of a bunch of bug fixes, a new XCore back-end, performance improvements (in the compiler and its generated code), new development documentation, and plenty more new work.

    • Linux Foundation has bought Linux.com

      The Linux Foundation has long wanted the Linux.com domain name for obvious reasons. For a long time SourceForge, formerly VA Linux Systems, kept the site, but the company has now sold Linux.com to the Foundation.

      Sources close to the deal say that the deal was made because, — an all too familiar story these days — the company needed the money. SourceForge, had, in addition to its well-known open-source eponymous code Web site, been in the media business. In December 2008, however, the company laid off the bulk of its NewsForge editorial staff. NewsForge was hosted at Linux.com. The Linux.com site then became something of a placeholder site, which held only a discussion forum.

    • Linux Foundation to Build New Linux.com Community
  • Desktop Environments

    • Hands-on: fat-free Xfce 4.6 has nice new features

      Other important enhancements in this release are a new GStreamer-based volume control mixer, an application finder, and better panel plugins. For more information about the new features, check out the project’s official release notes and screenshot tour.

  • Distributions

    • Knoppix – Linux 6.0 review

      A very well thought through distro that’s just the kind of OS you want at hand when problems arise. There’s a lot more to than simple recovery tools, too, and it’s a useful disc to have around when you just want to get some work done without fuss or hassle.

    • 5 Minutes of Knoppix 6.0.1
    • compiz fusion on puppy linux 3.00

      compiz fusion on puppy linux 3.00 www.puppylinux.com the music is from www.ultimateshowdown.org also the panel is provided by xfce 4.4

    • Parted Magic 3.7

      Yet another Slackware-based Linux distro! Parted Magic, aka “The Linux CD Partitioning Tool”, is a Live OS packed with recovery tools that you can use to troubleshoot your system.

      [...]

      Parted Magic is a lightweight OS that can run as a Live CD/USB. It includes many recovery utilities that can help repairing damaged systems. Additional software tools are available as downloadable modules. It would have been nice to have some of these modules (e.g. ClamAV, F-PROT) inside the OS, but hopefully these features will be added soon.

    • DreamLinux 3.5 Desktop Edition

      DreamLinux Desktop 3.5 Edition was released on March 1st, 2009. The distro has experienced some significant changes recently and it really seemed to do it for me in the past so i thought I’d give it a try and see what it could offer me. The biggest changes to DreamLinux were to the 3.0 version of the Linux OS which featured a complete re-design and a totally independent architecture called Flexiboost, based on overlaid modules. The main things this feature does for users is it allows the co-existence of multiple separate window managers, currently Gnome and XFCE. Both of these working environments share all applications available on the system.

    • Democracy in Action: Electing a Debian Leader

      This year, the campaign phase will be held from March 8 – 28, highlighted by an online IRC debate between the candidates during the last week of the campaign. By the beginning of the campaign period, all nominees will submit their platforms, which contain an introduction of the candidate and the candidate’s major goal. A week into the campaign, candidates will be allowed to attach any rebuttals they might want to add to their platform.

    • Debian Project Leader Elections 2009: Call for nominations
    • First Look: moonOS 2

      If you don’t fancy Enlightenment as your desktop environment and want something more “traditional,” moonOS 2 is also available in an LXDE edition. Both versions of moonOS 2 are a joy to look at and use. I didn’t find any major problems and the system is not a resource-eating monster so in the end whether you’ll use it or not is just a matter of taste.

    • A new Linux distribution erupts.

      Looking at the home page of www.magmalinux.org there is nothing special. Just a big list of all the languages it supports which seems quite impressive. Having come from an Australian speaking background I chose the standard US English version to test. On the next page I was presented with a list of eight different versions I could download.

      These versions are for Office, Home, Developer and Server in both 32 and 64 bit. I decided to download and try the Home version in 32 bit. The ISO is 1.2GB so I started the download and went and had a cup of coffee.

    • Red Hat

    • Ubuntu

      • First 5 minutes impressions Asus Eee Pc 901 and Ubuntu 9.04 alpha 5

        For a small device i always wanted, with long battery life (4,5 to 5 hours) and with an Ubuntu experience I never had before, I think these 305 USD are the best investment I ever made in a computing device. I would not dare calling it a netbook, because i think it can do way more than just browsing the net.

      • Ubuntu now offering mainline kernel builds

        The Ubuntu Kernel Team is pleased to announce the availability of mainline kernel builds for testing [1]. This will allow users to run the unmodified upstream vanilla kernel. This can be useful for verifying fixes upstream, testing for regressions introduced by Ubuntu specific changes, or confirming bugs exist upstream and subsequently help to report bugs upstream.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Free Linux Source Code and 2A Library With Leopard Imaging’s New HD Camera Boards for TI’s TMS320DM365 Evaluation Module

      Leopard Imaging Incorporated today announced the availability of a high-definition (HD) camera kit LI-5M02 based on a Micron/Aptina 5 Mega-pixel CMOS sensor, which can be seamlessly plugged into the new TMS320DM365 digital video evaluation module (DVEVM) from Texas Instruments Incorporated (TI). Providing customers with a 720p HD solution, the kit also includes a HD camera board, free Linux driver, application source code, binary files and royalty-free 2A function library (auto-exposure and auto-white balance) for image tuning.

    • Linux stack and tools vendor launches community site

      MontaVista has launched a community website for embedded Linux developers. The new “Meld” site is open to all embedded Linux developers, offering social networking technology like a graphical “People Map” (pictured below) to help developers find each other for collaborative projects, says the company.

    • MontaVista Unveils Meld Embedded Linux Community

      MontaVista® Software, Inc., the leader in embedded Linux® commercialization, today announced Meld, a new community for developers of embedded Linux devices. Meld provides a forum for developers of all skill levels to connect and share information, ideas and software around embedded Linux designs, accelerating their development efforts and delivery of commercial products.

    • New online community launches for embedded Linux developers
    • Linux tools vendor joins Moblin

      MontaVista today announced it was supporting the Intel-sponsored Moblin open-source community, which develops the Linux-based Moblin stack for Intel-Atom-based embedded devices. The announcement appears to be tied to an upcoming release of MontaVista Linux for Intel Atom, which will be available in mid-March, according to the company.

    • Nokia Updates the Alpha SDK for its Next-Generation Internet Tablets

      Nokia and the Maemo Linux community have released a new version of the Maemo 5 Alpha SDK (software developer’s kit). This new version of the Maemo 5 Alpha SDK introduces new user interface APIs and refinements to other core OS features.

    • LynuxWorks’ BlueCat® 5.6 to Accelerate Development of Next-Gen Portable Devices With Intel® AtomTM Processors

      LynuxWorks™, Inc., a world leader in the embedded software market, today announced its BlueCat 5.6 Linux operating system will help accelerate development of next-generation mobile communications devices by supporting the latest versions of the Intel® Atom™ processor Z5xx series platform, which includes industrial temperature range options. These new platform options, combined with the open source Linux flexibility of BlueCat, enables developers to quickly design and manufacture ultra portable, low-power fanless applications deployed in unconstrained thermal environments.

    • Phones

      • Android to take Linux mainstream

        Calvin Huang, an analyst at Daiwa Securities, told ZDNet Asia in an interview, Android is poised to “kill Microsoft” on several fronts: a big vendor-backed OS will likely provide better hardware support, and open source Android’s license is free.

      • OIN: Microsoft lawsuit won’t slow Linux’s lead in mobile market

        He also maintains that the lawsuit wipes away any credibility Microsoft has gained in its efforts to cooperate with the open source community. Microsoft is a Platinum Sponsor of the OSBC 2009 conference scheduled for later this month and has worked with Novell, Red Hat, the Apache Foundation and many other open source projects over the past 18 months.

    • Sub-notebooks

      • ARM-based Linux tablet converts to netbook

        Always Innovating announced an open-source Linux netbook that boasts a detachable touchscreen tablet and 10-15 hour battery life. Running OpenEmbedded/Angstrom Linux and Mozilla’s Fennec browser, the Touch Book weighs less than two pounds, offers WiFi 80211.b/g/n, and uses the Texas Instruments OMAP3-based BeagleBoard design.

      • Podcast: Innovative netbook with removable touch-screen

        The company has adapted a version of Linux to provide an iPhone CoverFlow-like interface for launching programs.

      • DEMO 09: Netbook with Detachable Screen and Half-Day Battery Life

        File this product under “We’ll believe it when we see it.” A Menlo Park company called Always Innovating says its Touch Book will be a netbook that turns into a tablet PC when you pull the screen away from the keyboard. The company also told the audience here at DEMO 09 that the Touch Book’s battery will last 12-15 hours on a charge.

      • Linpus and Insyde® Software Form Partnership to Advance Instant-On Solutions for PC Makers

        Linpus Technologies, Inc., a leader in the field of Linux® solutions for low cost notebooks and netbooks, and Insyde Software, a leading provider of UEFI (Unified Extensible Firmware Interface) firmware, today announced they have entered into a strategic partnership to address the mobile computing industry’s increasing demand for fast-boot and fast-access to practical applications including web browser, email, instant-messaging, media-centric applications and more.

      • Torture-Testing Phoenix HyperSpace, the Linux-Based Instant-On OS

        In the “Linux Rescues Windows From Itself In Yet Another Creative Way” category we have these newfangled Linux-powered instant-on environments. It seems that DeviceVM’s Splashtop has been getting the most attention. Splashtop comes on a ROM chip on certain motherboards, and ASUS says that eventually they want to bundle it on all of their boards.

Free Software/Open Source

  • Apache FtpServer 1.0.0 released

    The Apache MINA developers have released version 1.0.0 of Apache FtpServer, a pure Java FTP server implementation that can run stand-alone, or be embedded into applications. Apache MINA is a project developing a high performance, high scalability network application framework, and the FtpServer is built using the MINA technology.

  • Qt 4.5 ships, as Qtopia bows out

    Nokia-owned Qt Software is shipping Qt 4.5, a cross-platform library available for the first time under a commerce-friendly LGPL license. Additionally, Qt launched a new cross-platform IDE (integrated development environment) and SDK, and said it would discontinue the Linux-only Qt Extended stack (formerly “Qtopia”).

  • Qt Creator and Qt SDK for more approachable Qt

    Qt Software, a Nokia subsidiary, has released Qt Creator an Integrated Development Environment that makes Qt 4.5 and the Qt tool kit more accessible by providing an IDE customised for Qt development. Rather than having to spend time configuring an IDE to work with Qt, developers can get straight to work with C++ and the Qt tool kit. To make it even simpler, Qt SDK has also been announced, which bundles the Qt 4.5 tool kit with Qt Creator, as a single install package for the Qt newcomer.

  • Mozilla Plans another Beta Before Firefox 3.1 Release

    Mozilla last week confirmed it will add another beta to the Firefox 3 .1 development schedule, a move that will push the browser’s ship date to the second quarter or later.

  • Open Source Web Based Geospatial Processing with OMAR

    The availability of geospatial data sets is exploding. New satellites, aerial platforms, video feeds, global positioning system tagged digital photos, and traditional GIS information are dramatically increasing across the globe. These raw materials need to be dynamically processed, combined and correlated to generate value added information products to answer a wide range of questions.

  • Celtx 2.0 released

    Celtx 2.0, an open source media pre-production and screenwriting application, has been released. Celtx is an XUL application writing tool that includes several built in project templates to help users develop their stories. The application helps users get their ideas from concept to production, using pre-visualisation tools, like storyboards. Version 2.0 includes several new features, changes and bug fixes. Celtx is released under the Celtx Public License Version 1.3 (CePL) which consists of the Mozilla Public License Version 1.2 with additional amendments.

  • Hedging against recession with free and open source software

    Is free and open source software (FOSS) a way to cut business costs? As concern about recession – even depression – deepens, more and more companies are asking this question. However, many have trouble knowing how to begin to find an answer.

    Certainly, many companies have been looking for FOSS solutions in the last six months. Jim Zemlin, executive director of the Linux Foundation, predicted last December that GNU/Linux and other FOSS technologies would become more attractive in hard economic times. “Lower cost, faster time to market, higher profit margins, better branding — these are all things that are in favor of Linux and not in favor of Windows,” he writes, and his comments seem accurate. According to Business Week, FOSS-based companies like SugarCRM, Digium and Zenoss, all reported record quarters last fall, while Red Hat had over $500 million in revenue over the last twelve months.

  • Open Source Media Center Apps Are Growing Up

    Back in December, MediaPortal 1.0, an open source application that turns a PC/TV into a sophisticated media center and digital video recorder, arrived. Originally based on the XBMC project, version 1.0 was a nearly complete redesign, and has gotten quite a bit of notice, despite a few bugs. On March 15th, the folks behind MediaPortal plan to release a 1.0.1 version with usability improvements

  • Business

    • What do we know about open source pricing?

      My first experience with open source pricing was in 2002, when I was at Red Hat. I was part of team that had to set pricing for Enterprise Linux (or Red Hat Advanced Server, as it was called in those early days). We consciously decided to price it about 20 percent above Microsoft’s equivalent Windows servers, which we viewed as our major competition. Both Red Hat and Microsoft aimed to convert Unix users to the Intel platform, and we felt lower pricing would harm our credibility as a competitor.

      Many will argue that Enterprise Linux succeeded because the cost of the stack of Intel hardware plus Linux OS was lower than the equivalent Sparc/Solaris stack, but even that aggregate cost benefit was not 80 percent or more — nor did it need to be. Today the prices at OS vendors Red Hat, Sun, and Microsoft remain at about the same levels.

    • Martin Schneider, of SugarCRM, On the Open Cloud

      One of the big topics to be discussed at the upcoming Open Source Business Conference (OSBC), March 24th and 25th at the Palace Hotel in San Francisco, will be the future of open source. In preparation, OStatic is running a series of guest posts on this theme, featuring thought leaders from top open source projects. Last week, we checked in with Dries Buytaert, founder of the Drupal content management system, and co-founder of Acquia. This week, Martin Schneider, director of product marketing for SugarCRM, weighs in on the open cloud, and how SaaS, open source and dynamic platforms are converging. Here are his thoughts.

    • Open Source Usage Statistics: BitRock Network Service, an interview with Erica Brescia

      GroundWork 5.3 press release says that customers benefit from using the BitRock Network Service to be notified of available patches, and updates, and technical bulletins.

  • Sun

    • Understanding Sun in Three Easy Steps (1 of 4)

      To understand Sun, you have to understand both, you have to see what drives our financial performance, as well as read our financial statements. Absent both perspectives, you’ll miss the bigger picture, the bigger threat, or the bigger opportunity.

  • Government

    • Another letter to Jeremy Hunt MP, but this time a response too

      The Government has displayed its incompetence and complacency in relation to data time and time again – it is no wonder public trust in the ability of the Government to keep our personal details safe is at an all-time low. Last year, HMRC lost the personal data of almost half the population, leaving over 7 million families worried about the security of their bank accounts. More recently, the details of thousands of criminals, held on a memory stick, were lost by a government contractor. Countless other cases of lost data have occurred, including the details of thousands of driving test candidates, prospective military recruits and over 5,000 prison service staff. Now, even the Prime Minister has admitted that he “can’t promise that every single item of information will always be safe.

    • Governments and open source: never the twain shall meet

      Proprietary software companies are thus miles ahead when it comes to making politicians see their point of view. I don’t think the Debian GNU/Linux project is in a position to donate money to the Republicans or Democrats.

      Politicians will say anything that makes for good press and, in the face of a few embarrassing failures due to proprietary software, it is good PR to rub salve on wounds by advocating the use of open source software. The old touchy-feely tactic.

      At this point, there are plenty of rent-a-quote people in the FOSS arena who pull a figure out of the air or out of their arse and declare, with the utmost conviction, that the authorities can save X amount of money (in the recent UK case the figure cited was 600 million pounds a year) by using FOSS.

    • Governments: Starting to Vote For Ubuntu Linux?

      Finally governments are realising that open source has benefits beyond initial cost savings. They are discovering the freedom to share and re-use open source solutions is more cost-efficient in the long run. To quote Richard Stallman (founder of the GNU project and Free Software Foundation), FOSS essentially means “free as in free speech, not as in free beer.”

  • Licensing

    • So How Open is your Open Source Company Anyway?

      Luke Kanies, the creator of Puppet, commented in his last entry about Open Source business models, specifically the idea of an Open Core and what that means. As an Open Source company do you have an open version of your product that’s crippled?

    • OpenCore/Split Licensing: You Can Do It Wrong

      It may be that you have a product which is so generic that you can’t come up with something that satisfies the Cookie requirement. If it is, you shouldn’t be trying Split Licensing at all. Not every business model suits every Open Source project. Choose the right one.

    • The Most Free(tm) Way to Make Money from Open Source

      His model of providing supported binaries, as Red Hat and others do, only works for those who use compiled languages, which means it’s right out for us. Maybe we should stick some C in there, just to make it easier to charge for support?

  • Programming

    • CITTIO TO ADVANCE THE STATE OF CLOUD COMPUTING

      By making key contributions early on with its internal resources and using the best selection of open source components and industry standards, CITTIO will make it easy for the open source community to come together on creating broad and deep instrumentation of cloud components. The details on the implementation and benefits of this open source initiative called Project Zeppelin, is covered in a separate release. This effort will allow other management vendors to take advantage of Zeppelin as well to innovate and deliver new management solutions.

    • CollabNet Community Membership Tops 200,000

      CollabNet, the leader in distributed application lifecycle management (ALM) solutions, announced today that more than 200,000 members have now joined openCollabNet, the end-user and developer community for the CollabNet platform and Subversion. More than 20,000 new members join the rapidly growing community each month, and the community’s website delivers more than five million page views per month. CollabNet also announced today that more than 20 products that integrate third-party software, such as Eclipse, NetBeans, and Visual Studio, with the CollabNet platform and Subversion are now available on collabXchange, an online integration marketplace accessible to openCollabNet members. Free openCollabNet memberships are available at www.collab.net/community, and members can download integration products at www.collab.net/collabXchang

  • Events

    • The FOSDEM Diary 2009

      FOSDEM – a geek trip to Brussels. Going abroad to experience different cultures. Or at least, a chance to eat chips, suffer rain, and watch American TV in a different country.

    • SCALE 7x – One Week Later

      The seventh iteration of the Southern California Linux Expo (SCALE 7x) was held the weekend of February 20th 2009 in Los Angeles. SCALE is an annual conference that has several tracks and has special tracks on Friday. Along with the program tracks, there is an extensive vendor Expo Floor, which includes a Org Pavilion containing several free software organizations. The special tracks on Friday were the Open Source Software in Education, Women in Open Source, and SCALE University run by the League of Professional System Administrators (LOPSA).

    • FSF annual meeting — Libre Planet 2009 conference

      LibrePlanet will cover a range of free software activism topics, with an Open Space style effort to make progress on engineering for Free Network Services and the High Priority Software Projects. The event will be held at the Harvard Science Center, Cambridge, MA on March 21st and 22nd, 2009.

Standards/Consortia

  • ConsultationXML is now Open Source

    We’re terribly, fantastically pleased to announce that after a bit of wrangling, Steph Gray and I are able to release ConsultationXML as open source software under the GNU Affero license. The recent report on open source software in Government hinted that departments ought to try to release source code for the software they commission, and we’re delighted to be (we think!) the first to do so.

  • ODF Spreadsheet Interoperability: Theory and Practice

    This is a follow up to some work we did at the ODF Interoperability Workshop in Beijing last November. We had good participation there: IBM, Sun, Google, Novell and Redflag from the big vendor side, as well as a good number of users. It was a full-day workshop and we covered a number of topics. One of them was spreadsheet formulas. I gave a short presentation on spreadsheet interoperability, specifically on the work we’ve done on OpenFormula for ODF 1.2. We also did a short exercise to look for spreadsheet formula bugs.

  • Transparency and dependability for external partners

    As a consultant, it happens frequently to answer questions about “what makes open source better”. Not only for some adopter, but for companies and integrators that form a large network ecosystem, that (up to now) had only proprietary software vendors as source of software and technology. Many IT projects had to “integrate” and create workarounds for bugs in proprietary components, because no feedback on status was available. Mary Jo Foley writes on the lack of feedback to beta testers from Microsoft…

Leftovers

  • How to Save Investigative Journalism

    At the same time, one of the best sources for investigative journalism, Wikileaks, is a bit short of dosh. Problem, meet solution: newspapers should fund Wikileaks.

  • Defend the Data Protection Act

    One of the most important and earliest pieces of legislation concerning digital information is the Data Protection Act (DPA). Clause 152 of the Coroners and Justice Bill, currently before Parliament, would effectively nullify the DPA, since it would allow Ministers to use information gathered for one purpose for another – one of the things the DPA is there to prevent.

  • UK Government Opens Up a Little More…Or Not

    That, too, is a pretty hopeful sign that someone, somewhere, is beginning to get this openness lark. In addition, these pages could become an important resource about the governmental use of open source in the UK. Interesting times.

  • Copyrights

    • Hey, Warner, Leave those Kids Alone

      Last month we reported that Warner Music Group was using YouTube’s Content I.D. (aka Video I.D.) tool to effectively censor myriad fair uses. We asked people to contact us if they needed legal help and put up a YouTube removal primer to give folks information about their options. As a result we’ve seen beautiful film montages set to music, videos to assist the hearing impaired, and many other examples of amazing artistic talent that have been censored by Warner Music.

    • If Piracy Is Destroying The Movie Business, Why Is The Box Office Surging?

      Odd, then, that this weekend the NY Times (without ever referring back to that article from less than a month ago) is noting that attendance at movie theaters is way up since the beginning of 2009. And, no, it’s not just that tickets cost more (though, they do), but in real numbers more people are going to the theaters. The article suggests that it’s because of the recession. More people want to “escape” from reality and not have to think for a few hours, and a movie theater is a cheaper way to do that than many other options.

    • Is Anything In Shepard Fairey’s Image Actually Copyrightable By The AP?

      of copyright infringement over his iconic Barack Obama poster (Fairey initiated the actual lawsuit, asking for a declaratory judgment that his image did not infringe, but that was after the AP publicly stated they were going to go after him for infringement), many are looking over the legal issues, and examining whether or not Fairey’s use is fair use. In our initial post on the subject, it seemed pretty obvious that it was fair use, in large part because the AP didn’t even realize it was an AP photo until someone else pointed it out — suggesting that it was a transformative work, which represents a big part of the “test” for fair use.

    • EU President calls for intellectual property rights rethink

      Pottering told an audience at the Conference Centre here in Hannover that companies should allocate serious thought to the development of new business models to face the changing economic cirumstances.

    • UK Government Fails to Get Web 2.0

      In fact reading the full report is even more depressing, since it constantly harps on “stakeholders” – by which it means content owners – and clearly doesn’t give a toss for the general public’s concerns or needs.

      The UK government is clearly still trapped in the mindset that it’s about telling the little people what they can do with the stuff kindly provided by those magnanimous content corporations.

    • UK opposes copyright exemptions for mash-ups

      There should be no new exemption from copyright law for users’ adaptations of copyright-protected content, the UK Government has said. To create such an exemption for user-generated content would ignore the rights of content creators, it said.

    • John Conyers and Open Access

      The “open access movement” was born to create an alternative to this. Even if restrictive copyright was a necessary evil in the days of dead-tree-based publishing, it was still an evil. High costs restrict access. The business model of the scientist is to spread his or her knowledge as widely as possible. Open access journals, such as, for example, those created by the Public Library of Science, have adopted a different publishing model, to guarantee that all all research is freely accessible online (under the freest Creative Commons license) immediately, to anyone around the world. This guarantee of access, however, is not purchased by any compromise in academic standards. There is still a peer-review process. There is still even a paper-based publication.

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Gabriella Coleman, an anthropologist, explains Free Software culture 03 (2004)

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  3. Links 3/12/2021: Nitrux 1.7.1 and Xen 4.16 Released

    Links for the day



  4. Links 2/12/2021: OpenSUSE Leap 15.4 Alpha, Qt Creator 6

    Links for the day



  5. The EPO's “Gender Awareness Report”

    There’s a new document with remarks by the EPO’s staff representatives and it concerns opportunities for women at the EPO — a longstanding issue



  6. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, December 01, 2021

    IRC logs for Wednesday, December 01, 2021



  7. EPO Staff Committee Compares the Tactics of António Campinos to Benoît Battistelli's

    The Central Staff Committee (CSC) of the EPO talks about EPO President António Campinos, arguing that “he seems to subscribe to the Manichean view, introduced by Mr Battistelli…”



  8. Prof. Thomas Jaeger in GRUR: Unified Patent Court (UPC) “Incompatible With EU Law“

    The truth remains unquestionable and the law remains unchanged; Team UPC is living in another universe, unable to accept that what it is scheming will inevitably face high-level legal challenges (shall that become necessary) and it will lose because the facts are all still the same



  9. Links 1/12/2021: LibrePlanet CFS Extended to December 15th and DB Comparer for PostgreSQL Reaches 5.0

    Links for the day



  10. EPO Cannot and Will Not Self-Regulate

    The term financialisation helps describe some of the activities of the EPO in recent years; see Wikipedia on financialisation below



  11. [Meme] Germany's Licence to Break the Law

    Remember that the young Campinos asked dad for his immunity after he had gotten drunk and crashed the car; maybe the EPO should stop giving diplomatic immunity to people, seeing what criminals (e.g. Benoît Battistelli) this attracts; the German government is destroying its image (and the EU’s) by fostering such corruption, wrongly believing that it’s worth it because of Eurozone domination for patents/litigation



  12. EPO Dislikes Science and Scientists

    The EPO's management has become like a corrupt political party with blind faith in money and monopolies (or monopoly money); it has lost sight of its original goals and at this moment it serves to exacerbate an awful pandemic, as the video above explains



  13. Links 1/12/2021: LibreOffice 7.3 Beta, Krita 5.0, Julia 1.7

    Links for the day



  14. Links 1/12/2021: NixOS 21.11 Released

    Links for the day



  15. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, November 30, 2021

    IRC logs for Tuesday, November 30, 2021



  16. Links 1/12/2021: Tux Paint 0.9.27 and WordPress 5.9 Beta

    Links for the day



  17. [Meme] EPO Administrative Council Believing EPO-Bribed 'Media' (IAM Still Shilling and Lying for Cash)

    IAM continues to do what brings money from EPO management and Team UPC, never mind if it is being disputed by the patent examiners themselves



  18. The EPO's Mythical “Gap” Has Been Found and It's Bonuses for People Who Use Pure Fiction to Steal From Patent Examiners

    The phony president who has the audacity to claim there's a budget gap is issuing millions of euros for his enablers to enjoy; weeks ahead of the next meeting of national delegates the Central Staff Committee (CSC) tells them: "Events show that the delegations’ concerns about functional allowances have materialised. The lack of transparency and inflation of the budget envelope gives rise to the suspicion that high management is pursuing a policy of self-service at the expense of EPO staff, which is difficult to reconcile with the Office’s claimed cost-saving policy, and to the detriment of the whole Organisation."



  19. Video: Making the Internet a Better Place for People, Not Megacorporations

    Following that earlier list of suggested improvements for a freedom-respecting Internet, here's a video and outline



  20. Links 30/11/2021: KDE Plasma 5.23.4, 4MLinux 38.0, Long GitHub Downtime, and Microsoft's CEO Selling Away Shares

    Links for the day



  21. A Concise Manifesto For Freedom-Respecting Internet

    An informal list of considerations to make when reshaping the Internet to better serve people, not a few corporations that are mostly military contractors subsidised by the American taxpayers



  22. Freenode.net Becomes a 'Reddit Clone' and Freenode IRC is Back to Old Configurations After Flushing Down Decades' Worth of User/Channel Data and Locking/Shutting Out Longtime Users

    Freenode is having another go; after “chits” and “jobs” (among many other ideas) have clearly failed, and following the change of daemon (resulting in massive loss of data and even security issues associated with impersonation) as well as pointless rebrand as “Joseon”, the domain Freenode.net becomes something completely different and the IRC network reopens to all



  23. Jack Dorsey's Decision is a Wake-up Call: Social Control Media is Just a Toxic Bubble

    The state of the World Wide Web (reliability, preservation, accessibility, compatibility etc.) was worsened a lot more than a decade ago; with social control media that’s nowadays just a pile of JavaScript programs we’re basically seeing the Web gradually turning into another Adobe Flash (but this time they tell us it’s a “standard”), exacerbating an already-oversized ‘bubble economy’ where companies operate at a loss while claiming to be worth hundreds of billions (USD) and generally serve imperialistic objectives by means of manipulation like surveillance, selective curation, and censorship



  24. IRC Proceedings: Monday, November 29, 2021

    IRC logs for Monday, November 29, 2021



  25. Links 29/11/2021: NuTyX 21.10.5 and CrossOver 21.1.0

    Links for the day



  26. This Apt Has Super Dumbass Powers. Linus Sebastian and Pop_OS!

    Guest post by Ryan, reprinted with permission



  27. [Meme] Trying to Appease Provocateurs and Borderline Trolls

    GNU/Linux isn’t just a clone of Microsoft Windows and it oughtn’t be a clone of Microsoft Windows, either; some people set themselves up for failure, maybe by intention



  28. Centralised Git Hosting Has a Business Model Which is Hostile Towards Developers' Interests (in Microsoft's Case, It's an Attack on Reciprocal Licensing and Persistent Manipulation)

    Spying, censoring, and abusing projects/developers/users are among the perks Microsoft found in GitHub; the E.E.E.-styled takeover is being misused for perception manipulation and even racism, so projects really need to take control of their hosting (outsourcing is risky and very expensive in the long run)



  29. Links 29/11/2021: FWUPD's 'Best Known Configuration' and Glimpse at OpenZFS 3.0

    Links for the day



  30. President Biden Wants to Put Microsofter in Charge of the Patent Office, Soon to Penalise Patent Applicants Who Don't Use Microsoft's Proprietary Formats

    The tradition of GAFAM or GIAFAM inside the USPTO carries on (e.g. Kappos and Lee; Kappos lobbies for Microsoft and IBM, whereas Lee now works for Amazon/Bezos after a career at Google); it's hard to believe anymore that the USPTO exists to serve innovators rather than aggressive monopolists, shielding their territory by patent threats (lawsuits or worse aggression) and cross-licensing that's akin to a cartel


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