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09.11.09

Links 11/09/2009: Unbundling Petition in the EU, G:Noblin 3.0 Released

Posted in News Roundup at 8:05 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Petition for the refund of OEM Licenses in the EU

    Dear Sir or Madam,

    REF: Unclear refunds of OEM Licenses in Europe

    Legally one could assume that a customer chooses what he/she wants to buy. However it is still impossible today to buy a laptop / computer without a Microsoft license or to have a refund of said Microsoft software, if you do not agree to the Microsoft Licensing policies in which is clearly stated :

    “By using the software, you accept these terms. If you do not accept them, do not use the software. Instead, contact the manufacturer or installer to determine their return policy for a refund or credit.”

    Windows Vista_Home Premium_English_b6fbe7e6-f312-4692-8aee-f5b3d60987b4.pdf

    However this clearly stated OEM License Policy cannot be executed by said customer.

    For a fact, you can only see the license when you are using the software, in most cases the license is not included on paper with the software and in most cases not even in the language of the said customer.

    For a fact the manufacturer or installer refuse to refund or even refer to Microsoft to obtain a refund, which clearly is in violation of the said OEM License Policy. We’d like to urge the European Commission to take action and to make it possible to apply the License Policy of Microsoft and the law in favor of the consumer.

    We have studied the Licenses of the majority of Microsoft Operating Systems and have discovered that they all apply.

  • Desktop

    • A Little Allegory

      Admin Note: This is an allegory on Linux and Open Source Software as seen through the eyes of a “gearhead” (aka car lover) and explained as such. If you’re into cars, you’ll love this little tale.

    • Multimedia codecs on Windows vs. Linux – which one is harder?

      Don’t let your habits slow you down. Open your mind. Most importantly, do not use ignorance as a weapon to trash unfamiliar knowledge. Linux is definitely hard. I will never dispute that. But it’s no more or less difficult than Windows. As it happens, Windows was there first to set the visual rules how things out to be.

      I hope my codecs example has helped some of you realize that we should never settle and compromise or hide behind our fear when it comes to software. Computers and their programs are just tools, meant to serve us, not the other way around.

      Windows, Linux, it does not matter. Forget what you know. Shed your filthy habits away and become a toddler, learning the world anew. Without preconceptions, without social pressure and without the monkey effect dragging you down. Become a child, become a sponge and just suck all that new, exciting knowledge in.

      Forget the Start button in the left bottom corner, forget the old ways. With the slate clean, learning Linux will be the same as Windows, probably more fun. Remember how you used to get angry and frustrated when you tried Windows 95 for the first time and nothing was really how you expected it to be?

      Luckily, you have me and my tutorials to make the effort as pleasant as it can get.

    • Installing Software: Tux VS. Bill Gates

      One of the many tired myths about Linux is that it’s very difficult to install software. Many argue why should they type in a command instead of can just clicking next, next, check a box, next, and one more next? However Windows isn’t really as clear cut as they try to make it sound to be. Last year, an E-mail sent by Bill Gates to some Microsofties was leaked. Bill detailed his frustrating experience in downloading and installing Windows Movie Maker. While Bill’s experience is extreme, it illustrates that typing a command isn’t so bad after all. Most modern Linux distros have graphical interfaces to install software anyways.

    • Hey, check out my package!

      The Linux package managers do all of that dependency checking for you automatically and will install the required programs at the same time as they install the program you specified. Additionally, when you remove that program, the package managers will also remove the dependent programs which are no longer needed. Which windows doesn’t do. This makes for a cleaner running operating system and reduces the chances of things going bump in the night.

    • Eight Things Windows Needs Before I’ll Contemplate Using it Again

      Windows 7 is better than Vista. Great. But saying that is like saying you’d rather catch the common cold instead of swine flu. I’ve demoed the release candidate for Windows 7, and I can safely say that I still don’t like it. Aside from the default options being obnoxious and hard to use (the icons for running applications are identical to the directly-adjacent Quick Launch icons; running programs have no text to show you what they are; unless you have the hardware to back up the Aero interface, you can’t get the window previews to help you, either), there are several things I need to see in a Windows operating system before I’ll even contemplate switching back.

    • The truth about Windows users

      We all know that Windows Vista has been a flop, despite Microsoft’s claims. Even Microsoft’s Vista deployment statistics are suspect, as the company counts every new PC sale as a Vista sale, even in enterprises with site licenses that allow them to run any version of Windows, a practice undertaken at many businesses, as InfoWorld and others have noted. But how suspect? Thanks to real-world PC usage data from the exo.performance.network, we now know.

    • 5 things Best Buy employees must know about Linux.

      Lie no 5- Security
      This is the biggest, blatant lie of all the propaganda MS has ever come up with. It sometimes takes just hours for a patch to be pushed out to users when a vulnerability is discovered in Linux.You are never alone in terms of security when it comes to Linux. There is a constant look out for security threats in Linux and patches are never far away. Windows updates are pushed out when MS wants and not when it must. Windows is in itself an insecure OS without third party guards like antivirus and antispyware. MS talks about parental control, in what context is it referring to?

    • Dell Ubuntu Oops

      Chris Smart reports on the availability of a 10″ Linux netbook from Dell in Australia. I went to check it out and noticed some oopses on the Dell site – the operating system icon, and the availability of Norton Security (is there an Ubuntu version? I don’t know). It is somewhat scary that the generic icon they use for “operating system” is a specific logo for a vendor’s product (scary for competition, but also scary for that vendor as such usage can undermine trademark rights).

  • Server

    • Will KVM KO Xen?

      Those looking to get their hands on KVM need look no further than the Linux kernel itself, of which KVM is part. This makes vendor compatibility quite straightforward: All ISVs that are certified for RHEL are also certified for deployment on KVM.

    • Is Xen Mature Enough to Replace VMWare?
    • Guide to porting from Solaris to Linux on POWER
    • DreamWorks uses Red Hat cloud to cut filmmaking costs

      Like every other tech vendor, Red Hat Inc. wants to be seen as a cloud computing power. To that end, it trotted out a DreamWorks exec to discuss how the studio used a Red Hat Linux-based cloud to produce what it calls the world’s first stereoscopic, 3-D animation film this year.

    • NYSE/Euronext powers ahead with Unix-to-Linux migration

      Scalability is another big issue because world events have occasionally spiked trading volumes three or four times above average levels, yet the exchanges cannot afford to waste capacity and virtualization currently has too much latency for trading, he said.

      NYSE/Euronext piloted a project to achieve those goals last year. The company is building a trading platform to exchange equities, cash, derivatives, futures and commodities. The platform will service NYSE, Euronext, Europe’s largest cash equities market; Liffe, a European derivatives exchange; and NYSE Arca Options, a U.S. options electronic exchange.

  • Kernel Space

    • Linux 2.6.31 Accelerates Performance

      Linux is gaining support for new hardware — particularly USB 3.0 devices — and a new performance subsystem, courtesy of the newly released Linux 2.6.31 kernel.

      [...]

      The previous 2.6.30 kernel included improvement to boot times, which is something that is further improved in the new 2.6.31 kernel Kroah-Hartman noted that with the additional boot speed enhancements, his Moblin-based netbook can now boot the kernel in less than a second.

    • 2.6.31 is out

      My guesses? The 2.6.32 kernel should come out sometime around the beginning of December. It will include even better ATI Radeon support (with proper 3D acceleration, hopefully), the much-publicized “hv” drivers from Microsoft (though those may be removed before too long since the developers seem to have lost interest in maintaining them), some significant power management improvements, a number of changes aimed at improving virtualization performance, and a vast number of other things – stay tuned.

    • AMD Eyefinity 24 Display Tech Demo On Linux

      Today AMD issued a press release that they have “demonstrated the PC’s next act” with the unveiling of their ATI Eyefinity multi-display technology. This technology, to be found on their next-generation R800 series hardware, allow “up to 12 times 1080p high-definition resolution, which approaches eye-definition optical clarity.” Well, what does that mean? Just watch the video below. You may have seen other AMD Eyefinity demos come out today, but the recording below is a Linux-based demo.

  • Applications

    • 3 Ubuntu Software Applications For Chemistry Students

      An often overlooked aspect when compared with other more popular operating systems, Ubuntu enables students of various ages and topics to access a wealth of educational software. Of course, like all the software presented in the Synaptic Package Manager or Add/Remove Applications, these incredible useful tools are available for free and can be installed immediately from the Internet.

    • My 7 Favorite Features Of Opera 10

      Note before continuing: PCMech Premium members can see me review this browser in a 20-minute video.

    • Get Decked: A Look at TweetDeck

      You have to have the right tools for the job. In many cases, if the job is working with social media, the Web sites just won’t get it done. Facebook, Twitter, and others are designed for casual users or for users who are content to live in one walled garden. Want to break down the walls between Twitter and Facebook? Then you’ll want to take a look at TweetDeck.

    • CAD Programs for Linux

      Often, when I ask why users don’t adopt Linux, I am met with the response “There are no CAD (Computer Aided Design) applications. Now I will confess that I know next to nothing about CAD, so I thought I would take a moment to highlight some of the CAD applications available for the Linux operating system, show how they are installed and started, highlight their features, and then let those that know CAD well report on how successful (or not) they are. Sort of a user-generated showdown if you will.

    • Group test: newsreaders

      Knode is very complete and has probably the most flexible scoring system of any app in this Roundup, with XPN coming a close second. Because of this KNode may be the best solution if you follow several text-only newsgroups. Another advantage of KNode is that it lets you share address books and other email-related settings with KMail or the rest of the Kontact PIM, the KDE personal information manager.

  • Desktop Environments/Window Managers

    • Gnome Shell – Your Next Desktop Environment

      Since the release of KDE4, a major overhaul of the KDE desktop, there’s been some grumbling among the Gnome community about if and when Gnome would have a major overhaul. Well with Gnome 3 we’ll have it in the form of Gnome Shell. It pretty much replaces the panel and window manager in a normal Gnome installation with a fully composited environment with some great new functionality.

    • OpenMW interview with Nicolay Korslund

      OpenMW is a re-implementation of the (non-free) TES3 Morrowind game engine, written in the D programming language. The engine makes use of OGRE and other open source libraries, features an own scripting language called “Monster” and the latest release has the version number 0.6.

    • KDE

      • [Qt] SVG: parsing and content optimization

        Still, I decided to have a look, just in case there are low-hanging fruits I can grab. And I was right, far from being an SVG expert, with just two days of work I managed to squeeze its performance a bit, which you’d enjoy already in the recent 4.6 preview.

        [...]

        As you can see, Qt 4.6 would enjoy a bit of speed-up (in some cases up to 1.4x) when loading and parsing SVG.

      • scripting plasma-desktop

        One of the (many) goals for the Plasma project in KDE 4.4 is to make management of the Plasma Desktop Shell (plasma-desktop) easier by introducing a power tool: an ECMA Script environment.

      • Kubuntu apps repraise

        Some of you might have noticed that recently two new Kubuntu apps hit the CD for the upcoming 9.10 release.

  • Distributions

    • The G:Noblin 3.0 is Released

      The GoblinX Project is proud to announce the release of the new stable G:Noblin distribution. The G:Noblin 3.0 is Released. The G:Noblin is the GoblinX Gnome and GTK/GTK2 based distribution. The edition is ideal for those users whose are fan of the Gnome desktop environment. This distribution is an old desire of GoblinX users.

    • Noteworthy PCLinuxOS updates (Aug 30st – Sep 05th 2009)

      I’m a little late getting this out due to helping get the quarterly update iso’s prepared due out toward the end of the month. The quarterly updated isos will get an updated kernel, ext4 support and all the updated applications and desktops. These will be the final updates for 2009 release.

    • Red Hat Family

      • 02 Sep 2009: Enterprise Linux 5.3 to 5.4 risk report

        Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.4 was released today, just over 7 months since the release of 5.3 in January 2009. So let’s use this opportunity to take a quick look back over the vulnerabilities and security updates we’ve made in that time, specifically for Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5 Server.

      • Clarification on Foresight and Fedora

        Foresight is toying with the idea of having a sub-project (completely separate from Foresight Linux base) that it has tentatively called ‘boots, a Fedora remix‘ (a play on Dora in Fedora for those of you with kids).

      • Red Hat Funds Open Source Lab in New Gates Center

        In an ironic turn, Carnegie Mellon University will be housing a new open source computer lab funded by Red Hat in a new computer center funded by a $20 million lead gift from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

    • Ubuntu Family

      • moonOS 3 Review, Screenshots, Video

        moonOS is another fantastic looking distro that has always put a lot of stock in appearance. Based on Ubuntu 9.04 Januty Jackalope and codenamed “Makara”, the moonOS 3.0 release is no exception with plenty of improvements to moonControl, the moonOS system control center, moonGrub, moonSoftware, and more. Along with many interface improvements moonOS 3.0 uses the Linux 2.6.28-15 kernel, Firefox 3.5, Pidgin 2.6 and Xorg 7.4.

      • Problems with Your Intel Wireless Drivers? Try Ubuntu

        With no real requirement for Windows other than my fiancee’s convenience and familiarity, then, I decided to give Ubuntu a shot at the job and see if it was the hardware that was the problem. Having come off some separate Intel driver issues with Jaunty, I skipped the current production release and went to Karmic. The verdict? Works flawlessly. I’ll be damned if I know what the problem was with the Windows drivers, but with a working alternative I doubt I’ll ever try and find out. I’ll wait to see if Windows 7 drivers are released, and if they are, I’ll see how they fare.

        Until then, how is the fiancée adjusting to Linux? “I kind of like it,” she says.

      • Wi-Fi Tracing With Ubuntu and an Acer Aspire

        If you are running Linux on a PC, notebook or netbook with a Wi-Fi card it’s “relatively” easy to use the system together with Wireshark for WLAN tracing. Since Wireshark version 0.99.5, even WPA decryption is supported so Wireshark also decodes the packets from other devices in your network.

      • Ubuntu: One Year Later

        Hard to believe, but it’s been almost a year since my first Ubuntu-themed article appeared on this site. Last October I made the decision to try Ubuntu 8.04. This was the end result of a number of factors, including months of trying to squeeze every drop of life out of XP. Eventually the futility of salvaging a 7-year-old (at the time) OS hit me, and I realized that 2008 was as good a time as any to try something new.

        A year later, Ubuntu is still my primary operating system. I’ve also converted my wife’s PC to Ubuntu (at her request) and we use Ubuntu on our laptop for everything besides Netflix. I’ve had 4 friends and most of my immediate family try Ubuntu, and more than half continue to use it as a primary OS.

      • New, New, New

        I thought I would just say WOW!

        There are little touches in Karmic that just make me think why wasn’t this in before. This has actual got to the point now where I am seriuosly thinking of upgrading my main box.

        [...]

        With Firefox3.5.2 currently in Karmic I have to admit I’m impressed. It’s by and far the fastest Firefox release so congratulations to them. But how about something a little lighter for your netbook, well the latest epiphany now has a webkit gtk backend this is easily as firefox but with one big avantage (in my opinion) on ssd drives it uses less disk swaping so it sits there happily producing pages without many hitches.

      • LifeHacker and Ubuntu: A Response

        Recently LifeHacker had an article talking about five things they would like to see in Ubuntu. The article is very supportive of Ubuntu, and we appreciate that LifeHacker folks, and I wanted to follow up with a few notes about each of the five areas they focused on, particularly with relation to the recently released Alpha 5 development snapshot of the up-and-coming Ubuntu 9.10 Karmic Koala.

      • The New Artwork in Ubuntu 9.10

        Today, September 11th, we decided to post for our readers, especially Ubuntu users, some of the community themes and icons that will be present in the upcoming Ubuntu 9.10 (Karmic Koala) operating system, due for release on October 29th. If they will not be installed by default, the following themes can be easily added by accessing the Synaptic Package Manager and search for the community-themes package, which is already available in the daily builds.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Phones

      • Android bandwagon picks up INQ

        The boutique mobile handset manufacturer INQ announced that it’s now developing on Android, Google’s open source mobile stack. INQ chief executive Frank Meehan said his mystery Googlephones would “definitely” arrive sometime in 2010, but at this point, the devices seem to consist of little more than, well, an announcement at a tech conference.

    • Sub-notebooks

      • Nano notebook design sports Mobile WiMAX

        Via announced a Linux-compatible notebook reference design that packs a 1.3GHz Nano processor along with optional Mobile WiMAX, GPS, and cellular connectivity. The “eNote Turnkey Solution” has an 11.6-inch display, 2-megapixel camera, and up to 2GB of DDR2, says Via, which also announced it has joined the Linux Foundation.

      • Netbooks? Oh Yes, They Are Enterprise Grade

        Think about it. The old, small Sony Vaios (like my old Sony Vaio Picturebook) were netbooks in every way but name. Sony sees itself as one of the pioneers of netbooks, but one that gets little or no credit for it. So out of spite they refuse to use the term to describe their netbooks.

        But whatever you call them, there are definitely netbooks out there that are enterprise ready.

      • Netbook OSes: Which will rule the enterprise?

        Netbooks is a “category with legs,” says Stephen O’Grady, an analyst with Seattle-based consultancy RedMonk, pointing to recent market activity as an indicator of the netbook’s viability. Most obvious, he says, is Google’s decision to build a separate Linux-based operating system — Chrome OS — specifically for netbooks. Meantime, Microsoft is grappling with “hard questions about its OS pricing relative to netbooks,” and virtually every major hardware maker, apart from Apple Inc., has an offering in the category.

      • Choosing the Right Linux Netbook + Why You Should Avoid Windows 7

        Linux distro:

        What’s good about Linux is that you have plenty of flavors to choose from. The most widely used distros on netbooks are Xandros, SUSE, Linpus, and Ubuntu Netbook Remix. Each of them has different features so I recommend picking the one that you are comfortable with. Don’t worry; Linux is as easy as using Windows these days.

        Why You Should Avoid Windows 7:

        With all the positive reviews that I’ve read about Windows 7, I still want you stay away from it if you are planning to buy a netbook. Why? Though it’s a trimmed-down version of Vista, it is still a resource hog. Like, its minimum recommended RAM requirement is 1 GB.

      • GoblinX 3.0 GNOME Edition Has Support for Netbooks

        Flavio Pereira de Oliveira announced last night (September 8th) the 3rd release of his popular Slackware-based Live CD Linux distribution, GoblinX GNOME, also known as G:Noblin. This new, stable version brings GNOME 2.24 as the default desktop environment and includes translations in many languages. But the most important feature in G:Noblin 3.0 is definitely the netbook interface, especially designed by the GoblinX team, based on Ubuntu Netbook Remix with some ideas from Foresight Linux.

Free Software/Open Source

  • Sun

    • No MySQL, no Java in oracle developing plans ?

      Here is the Oracle’s latest ad in the Wall Street Journal today to Sun customers about Oracle’s plans , oracle promise their costumers to spend more money developing SPARC, Solaris, Hardware !!!!! Where is MySQL ,java ??????

    • MySQL Connector for OpenOffice.org 1.0 GA

      MySQL Connector for OpenOffice.org 1.0 has been released. This first GA release supersedes any previous Alpha and Beta releases.

      The driver can be used in OpenOffice.org 3.1.1 and the upcoming OpenOffice.org 3.2 to connect to a MySQL server, versions 5.1 and later.

  • Operating Systems

    • A Very Early Look At OpenSolaris 2010.02

      OpenSolaris 2009.06 was released earlier this year, but unlike in years past and contrary to their original six month release cycle, there will not be another OpenSolaris distribution release in 2009. Instead, the next slated release is OpenSolaris 2010.02, which should be out in early February of next year. It is far too early to speculate everything that this next Sun operating system will have in store, but we do have some screenshots off a recent SXCE build and other details.

    • DesktopBSD 1.7

      Price: Free
      Pros: Great selection of software, very easy install.
      Cons: This, apparently, is the last release of DesktopBSD. The developer is retiring. Note also that it uses an older version of KDE (3.5) not the latest version (4.3). Package manager did not start so I could not update my system or add more software.
      Suitable For: Intermediate and advanced users.
      Summary: Great selection of bundled software and an easy install. A potential alternative to the usual array of desktop Linux distros. Package manager bug needs to be fixed ASAP though.
      Rating: 3/5

  • Audio

    • Video: Audio Production With Free Software

      In this talk I take you through how I produce podcasts like the Software Freedom Law Show using only Free Software and Open Source solutions. Sound engineering is something I’ve done for a long time and it’s a real passion of mine. I hope that comes across in the talk. As you can see there wasn’t even a projector in the room, so I’m just using my laptop to try and show the slides to everyone. If you have any questions please feel free to post them in the comments here and I’ll do my best to answer them.

    • Developers Land Funding for Songbird Open-Source Music Player

      Pioneers of the Inevitable, the developer of the Songbird open-source music jukebox software, has raised an undisclosed amount of new financing, TechCrunch reported.

  • Graphics

  • Mozilla

    • Top 5 Firefox Add-Ons For Soccer Fans

      In the latest browser wars, the browser usage statistics show that Firefox has almost 50% of the market share. Other than how easier it is to use and how fast it is, one of the reasons web users love Firefox is because of their massive library of add-ons.

    • 5 Ways to Pimp Your FireFox Address Bar

      The address bar is where you see the full URL of the current page. This is the only bar in FireFox I always have in front of my eyes (I may have some of the bars hidden when I need more space but this one is always active).

    • Thunderbird Quick Folders
  • FSF/GNU

    • Osama Khalid is the first GNU Generation member of the month

      Congratulations to Osama Khalid (OsamaK) for being selected as the first ever GNU Generation member of the month! Osama speaks Arabic natively, and has been using this gift to help the free software community. He worked with projects including KDE and VLC this past month to translate popular applications into Arabic. As a FSF/GNU translator, he also recently translated Holmes Wilson’s blog post on Ogg Theora.

    • Are you a 100% free user ?

      I can’t remove linux packages, we can’t get an operating system without a kernel. tangerine-icon-theme package is in direct dependency with ubuntu-desktop so I prefer to keep it for future updates. Some times I have to manipulate rar archives so I have to keep unrar package too. The modaliases packages are installed to find the sweetest proprietary driver for the graphic card, and In my case I don’t need them as my ATI X1300 Pro works as a charm with the free driver.

      My final result :

      7 non-free packages, 0.4% of 1843 installed packages.

      So Mr RMS what do you think ?

  • Government

    • White House Director of New Media speaks about Open Source

      I’m participating at the O’Reilly Gov 2.0 Summit in Washington DC this week, and it is amazing to see the people that the O’Reilly conference team has brought together, both in terms of speakers and participants. In the afternoon, WAMU radio host Kojo Nnamdi interviewed Macon Phillips, the White House Director of New Media, revealing that both had a handle on the technologies reshaping American politics and concepts of American civic actions.

  • Programming

    • Tasty New Google Summer of Code Stats

      It’s time for more tasty statistics about Google Summer of Code 2005 – 2009. After much crunching and gathering, we have added the 2009 Accepted Students by School data to our published statistics page. Here are some highlights…

    • Facebook Opens Up

      As this post rightly points out, we’re moving way beyond the traditional LAMP stack in large-scale open source deployments, with all kinds of powerful and innovative tools being developed and shared. This is a testimony to the increasing maturity of open source solutions in such high-end applications. Facebook should also be praised for its mature view that releasing “generically useful infrastructure components” as open source is good for the ecosystem, and hence good for them.

    • IBM punts free enterprise language tools

      IBM has begun offering a free version of its Enterprise Generation Language (EGL) tools, so developers can build dynamic web applications without getting their hands dirty using HTML or JavaScript.

Leftovers

  • Proprietary browsers built on proprietary browsers: the blind leading the blind?

    However my real rant is on the decision to base this piece of total rubbish on a proprietary offering in the first place. Forcing your customers to use one particular browser is bad enough, forcing them to use something like this is even worse. This browser is of course proprietary, if I could get to the code I could perhaps see the problem and suggest a fix. I’m not entirely convinced the issue is solely the fault of the javascript. But I can’t. I can’t even contact the developers and explain the exact nature of the problem. Welcome to proprietary software. What bugs me the most is that — having been subjected to this kind of treatment again by proprietary software and its distributors — my friend has taken the opinion that “this is how it is” with software and computers. You get a problem, you ask someone, contact people, complain and — because your problem is nothing particularly big (in the developer’s eyes) you get little or no response.

  • The Bizarre Cathedral – 52
  • AstroTurf

    • Lobbyists urge FCC to loosen up

      US wireless lobbyist The CTIA is drawing on UK regulator Ofcom’s research to convince the FCC that an unregulated market is a competitive market.

    • Connected Nation One Link To Derail New Broadband Policy — Connect The Dots

      Starting this week (Sept. 10), the House Telecom Subcommittee is going to start looking at the broadband stimulus program and, perhaps next week, examine how the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is doing under the new management. The national broadband plan, required under the Federal stimulus program, should also be a topic of discussion when the Subcommittee holds an oversight hearing.

    • Obama speech disrupter a health industry darling

      At that point the president was interrupted by Rep. Addison Graves “Joe” Wilson (right), a Republican from South Carolina.

      “You lie!” Wilson shouted from the crowd.

      Obama paused for a moment before continuing his address as Wilson’s colleagues looked on in shock following the breach of protocol.

      Whether because of his outspokenness or in spite of it, Wilson is a major recipient of contributions from the health care industry.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Marriage Made in Hell: FOI+DRM

      They’re claiming what? – intellectual monopolies on the facts? Talk about being true to the spirit of the law….

    • RIAA must embrace file sharing

      College students everywhere are mourning the tragic, soon-to-be loss of the Pirate Bay, an online file sharing legend that has recently come under some insurmountable legal scrutiny.

    • Pre-release music pirates face 4 years in prison, $250k fine

      Four members of the group Rabid Neuroses (RNS) have been indicted for conspiring to commit copyright infringement with pre-release music and albums. The four face jail time if found guilty, while a fifth has already pleaded guilty and a sixth faces sentencing soon.

    • Lord Kames Explains Why Copyright Is Not Property… In 1773

      I’ve posted the full text of Lord Kames’s opinion in the important Scottish Sessions case of Hinton v. Donaldson from 1773. This was the case that rejected for Scotland, by a vote of 11-to-1, the theory of “common law copyright”, that authors (meaning, in practice, publishers) had a perpetual copyright, at common law, of their writings. It was followed a few months later by the English House of Lords’s decision in Donaldson v. Beckett, in which the English Lords rejected just as forcefully the claim that authors had perpetual copyright under the common law of England.

    • The Real Problem With The Google Book Settlement Isn’t The Settlement, But Copyright Law Itself

      In Congressional hearings on Thursday about the Google book settlement, most of the news reports focused on two particular things: (1) the fact that Marybeth Peters, head of the US Copyright Office, spoke out against the settlement, claiming that it violates copyright law and (2) Google’s “concession” in letting other booksellers offer up the “orphan works” that Google would scan. [...] The whole problem of “orphan works” is solely a result of the continual and ridiculous level of copyright expansion over the years that has created these so-called “orphan works.” It seems that the only person who actually seemed willing to discuss that was Rep. Zoe Lofgren, who actually used the occasion to call for a repeal to the 1998 Copyright Term Extension Act, noting that it was a large part of the problem.

    • 580,388 Orphan Works – Give or Take

      Clearly one of the most (if not the most) contentious issue regarding the Google Book Settlement (GBS) centers on the nebulous community of “orphans and orphan titles”. And yet, through the entirety of the discussion since the Google Book Settlement agreement was announced, no one has attempted to define how many orphans there really are. Allow me: 580,388. How do I know? Well, I admit, I do my share of guess work to get to this estimate, but I believe my analysis is based on key facts from which I have extrapolated a conclusion. Interestingly, I completed this analysis starting from two very different points and the first results were separated by only 3,000 works (before I made some minor adjustments).

    • German Pirate Party Surging To 3% Share on Votes, Polls Suggest.

      As a supplement to my earlier posting: I think I should report that recent polls undertaken by infratest/dimap suggest that meanwhile the German Piratenpartei appears to be at approximately 3%.

    • Micropayment Systems Are Like Buses…

      This is actually an extremely important aspect. If this micropayments service takes off, it means that Google will become one of the main gatekeepers to content, both free *and* paid. In fact, it will become the enforcer of the difference, blocking your access to stuff that you haven’t paid for. It’s not hard to imagine that present links to free, unauthorised versions of that stuff might start disappearing from Google’s index.

      Coupled with the Google Book Settlement, which effectively gives the company a monopoly on access to out-of-print copyright works, this micropayment scheme has the potential to give Google control over even greater swathes of knowledge online – not a very pleasant prospect, even assuming it tries to stick to its “Don’t be evil” line.

    • Disney sued over Pixar lamp ‘copy’

      Luxo makes swivel table lamps that Pixar founder John Lasseter has said were the inspiration for his company’s logo.

    • Cobain band mates denounce dead rocker’s Guitar Hero gig

      Guitar Hero 5 has failed to hit the right note with the surviving members of grunge band Nirvana.

Clip of the Day

Video: Audio Production With Free Software


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