Summary: More capital for former Microsoft employees (with Microsoft investments), who are eavesdropping on individual people for “Microsoft, political groups, billionaires and advertising agencies to monitor and manage the online reputation of products, brands and individuals,” according to the Seattle Times
LAST YEAR we provided extensive background about Visible Technologies. Its name should be inverted to say “Invisible Technologies” because this low-profile company is the Microsoft-funded (and made out of former Microsoft employees) equivalent of Radian6, which we last mentioned here. Microsoft is among the clients of Visible Technologies (well, obviously) and this firm is hounding particular people or posts. It offers services to Microsoft, such as gagging of critics and tracking them. It’s akin to AstroTurfing, but of course they would use PR and spin to ‘perfume’ what they are doing.
For those who are not aware of the very unethical behaviour of this controversial company, here are some prior posts [1, 2]. Many people have publicly complained about Visible Technologies.
Isn’t it funny that no news report about this latest development (an investment) talks about the dark side of this company and the negative impact of its planned expansion? As Brier Dudley puts it, “Visible’s service is used by large companies such as Microsoft, political groups, billionaires and advertising agencies to monitor and manage the online reputation of products, brands and individuals. It was started in 2003 in a Kirkland apartment.”
Yes, with roots at Microsoft it is ‘policing’ reputations now. As we showed before, they use automated responses to overwhelm critics of their clients. That includes Microsoft and we have seen how it works. █
At CES, Nvidia demonstrated tablet-PC prototypes incorporating its Tegra 250 processor, including a Linux-based model from Foxconn, and Android-based models from ICD and Notion Ink, the latter using Pixel Qi display technology. Meanwhile, an Android version of HP’s Windows-based “Slate” computer is on the way, say several reports.
The Linux Box is partnering with Opsera Limited to become an official Opsview reseller in the United States, with the goal of expanding the national presence of this award-winning network and infrastructure monitoring software suite.
Opsview provides comprehensive system management capabilities used to monitor the health of today’s most complex data centers. It enables IT managers to identify and fix issues with their systems before they impact system availability. Opsview enhances the widely used Nagios® monitoring framework by adding many additional configuration, graphing and management capabilities, while remaining 100 percent compatible. Opsview earned the Product Excellence award for Best System Management Tool at LinuxWorld Expo in 2008.
You know what stories perform the worst on Linux Today? Anything that pertains to freedom- software freedom, the GNU Foundation, the Software Freedom Law Center, civil rights, and law. Technology is front and center on the big issues of the day. If we didn’t have FOSS we would be in an even worse mess as a society, because then technology would all be centralized and controlled by a very few people who have proven their hostility to civil liberties, privacy, and basic decency.
I don’t believe it is exaggerating to say that Linux/FOSS is all that stands between technology tyranny, corporate tyranny, and the hope of something better.
I’ve sampled a variety of podcasts about Linux, including FLOSS Weekly and TuxRadar, but the Outlaws are by far and away my favourite. At first blush an excitable German University student and baritone Liverpudlian might seem like an odd choice to host such a thing, but you’ll quickly realize that both share an equal passion for all things open. They also put on a great show.
Here’s a quick tour of the Outlaw universe to get you up to speed:
One of my favourite recent episodes of the podcast featured an extended interview with Bradley Kuhn & Aaron Williamson from the Software Freedom Law Center. Did you know that a whole whack of television and set-top box manufacturers are using GPL code without giving back to the community? The lesson to be learned here is that open-source has deeper pockets than you might think.
There is an effort that some of us have started for the purpose of bringing GNU-Linux to low income benefits groups. We have made contact with one of the largest charities in San Francisco. This is an organization that feeds thousands of people every month. They also have a jobs program. In connection with that jobs program, they have a computer lab. We are in the process of rolling out GNU-Linux in that context because we feel that Linux computers could do so much for people who are trying to lift themselves up off of the street.
Lately, I’ve been noticing stories about how to use Linux you need to know half-a-hundred Linux shell commands and the like. Ah, what century are you from? Today, if you can see a window and handle a mouse you’re ready to use Linux.
And, no, I’m not talking about how we’re all already using Linux in devices like the TiVo or the Droid smartphone and through Linux-powered Web sites like Google. I’m talking about using Linux on the desktop.
There is nothing, I repeat nothing, that requires any special knowledge to use Linux on the desktop today. If you’ve already mastered Windows XP, you’ll have little more trouble moving to a Linux desktop like Red Hat’s Fedora 12; Novell’s openSUSE 11.2; or Canonical’s Ubuntu 9.10 than you would in switching over to Windows 7.
Hmm. Odd release. Something like 40% of the patches are in DRM (mostly nouveau and radeon, both staging, so it’s a bit less scary than it sounds. But there’s a noticeable i915 component too). That’s all pretty unusual, afaik.
The other part of this work is the new protocol requests for DRI2 2.2 and they include DRI2SwapBuffers, DRI2GetMSC, DRI2WaitMSC, DRI2WaitSBC and DRI2SwapInterval. These requests are used for supporting the SGI_video_sync, SGI_swap_interval, and OML_sync_control GLX extensions. It was back in October that we originally talked about these DRI2 sync and swap extensions.
The last time we talked about Gallium3D work being done by Zack Rusin was just before the holidays when he was hacking on new geometry shader support. Zack’s latest work on Gallium3D though is for defining “feature levels” that provides a table for what features can be supported by a given driver / graphics processor.
The latest work by Chia-I Wu is a new EGL driver / state tracker (named “egl_g3d”) that has just been pushed into Mesa. For those unfamiliar with EGL, as described by the Khronos Group, “EGL is an interface between Khronos rendering APIs such as OpenGL ES or OpenVG and the underlying native platform window system.”
Linux comes with a virtue of different software about Mathematics. Computers are very good on Math because after all. To some people computers are like super-calculators on steroids.Whether you want to program or plot, prove theorems or create asthestically appealing graphs or charts, there is something for everyone in this compilation of top 30 math packages available in Linux.
I thought I would give our readers the heads up about the soon to be released CrossOver 9.0. CodeWeavers CrossOver 9.0 is slated for launch sometime towards the end of January beginning of February 2010 and represents a major step forward for the CrossOver product. At this time no definite release date is scheduled, but it should be within the next month or so.
Today the version 2 of DivX Converter has been released. DivX converter is a simple Mencoder frontend to Produce DivX Player Compatible AVI video format with the ability to merge subtitles . It support many video and audio filters and many presets.
One of the best ways to protect sensitive computer data like credit card numbers and social security information is to use encryption software. Encryption software executes an algorithm that is designed to encrypt data in such a way that it cannot be recovered (decrypted) without access to the key. It is a main component of all aspects of file protection and computer communication. Files on hard drives and other removable media, email messages, and packets sent over computer networks can be made secure by encryption software.
Ripping a CD or DVD is one of the most basic tasks for a PC user. But you need the right tools if you want to automate the process. Current ripping programs incorporate video encoding, tagging, and subtitles management. There’s no single app that will do everything, so here are our picks for the best Linux apps for ripping audio CDs and video DVDs.
After putting in all of the time, and perhaps money, into your WordPress website or blog, its now time to secure and protect it from outside enemies and general bad guys: hackers, spammers and all round tossers.
There is no doubt that Joomla! is one of the best content management system (CMS) in the world. It has a large set of extensions to meet almost any type of application need ranging from content management, photo gallery, multimedia streaming to e-commerce and social networking. It has great flexibility in changing designs and customizing the code. With Joomla, you can build any kind of website and dynamic web application. For example, this step-by-step tutorial by Suhreed Sarkar describes how to build custom form applications in Joomla! using CK Forms component without delving into any PHP code.
In this article by Reynante Martinez, we’ll cover everything from modeling a tin can from scratch, giving it some basic shading, adding appropriate textures, finalizing the lighting schemes for the scene to lastly compositing it for a better feel.
Conclusions: This is hands-down one of the most user-friendly distributions I’ve tried. This long-term test drive had a few relatively minor bugs, and they were far outweighed by Zenwalk’s overall friendliness and ease of use. The distro is bright and well-designed, and is backed by strong documentation and a newby-friendly community. In my installation it had a very high “just worked” factor, although obviously individual results may vary for other users and machines. If XFCE isn’t your cup of tea, Zenwalk is also available in a GNOME version.
The Raleigh-based Linux provider’s stock purchases were made as part of a previously announced repurchasing plan that was last amended in November 2008. The program authorizes the repurchase of up to $250 million worth of common stock. The program expires Oct. 31, 2010, unless the company’s board and executives discontinue the program sooner.
Shockingly, Ubuntu dropped wvdial and gnome-ppp — the command-line and GUI ppp connectors, respectively — from the distro years ago. In order to connect to the Internet, most African users must therefore connect to the Internet (see the problem?), download the appropriate packages, and configure their dial-up or 3G connection. Just about anyone who has used Ubuntu knows that it’s not particularly capable out of the box without Internet access.
Boxee Beta is now open to all. Even its alpha release was rock solid, so one could think of the kind of expectation everyone has for Boxee Beta. From the first look, I have to say, Boxee beta has pretty much lived up to the hype.
Lots of fascinating new devices were showcased during past week’s Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas. In addition to marketing new products events like the CES serve as an opportunity to demonstrate what technology can do. Naturally, some of those feats may not prove particularly useful, but they are fun to watch anyway.
Atmel announced a version of its ARM926EJ-based “SAM9″ line of industrial-focused system-on-chips, this time integrating a video decoder and graphics acceleration. The SAM9M10 ships with a Linux evaluation board and BSP, and supports video at up to 720 x 576 pixels and 30 frames per second, says the company.
The Android 2.1 SDK includes APIs for creating animated wallpapers, as well as some additional telephony functions and a couple of improvements to interaction with the WebKit browser, all of which are used by Google’s own Nexus One applications and are now available to other developers too.
At CES, Innovative Converged Devices (ICD) demonstrated two Android-based touchscreen computers based on Nvidia’s Tegra 250 processor — a 15.6-inch Vega kitchen computer and a seven-inch Ultra tablet. Also at CES, ICD and T-Mobile UK announced that the latter will launch the Vega later this year in the U.K.
One Laptop per Child Association will be gathering 300 MBA, graduate and undergraduate business students to develop innovative business cases for XO laptop deployment under the auspices of the Global Case Challenge. But I wonder why.
Every year, for the last couple of years, FOSS community Nepal has been getting a small stall to showcase whatever they have to the unusually large mass that come to witness the event. Not that FOSS is going anywhere in Nepal, but still that opportunity to try and create awareness existed. From this year onwards FOSS community is not going to be able to do that too as they have been told that due to lack of space they will not be able to put up a stall.
A big concern with the modern JVM languages like Scala and Clojure is the ability to scale out from the single JVM address space into distributed environments. Different approaches include a distributed JVM (terracotta), distributed actors (akka), message queues (AMQP/rabbitmq), or solutions for specific computational models, like hadoop.
The arrival of a new year is often viewed as an opportunity for self improvement. According the US government, some of the population’s top new year’s resolutions for 2010 include plans to lose weight, improve finances, and reduce stress. I imagine that our audience of super-geeks have a few goals that aren’t on the list. This year, I decided to finally fix up my personal Web site. An open source lifestream framework called Storytlr made my goal easy to accomplish.
The Web browsing world is exciting again. Google’s Chrome browser is faster than fast and there’s serious thought that Internet Explorer may actually lose its top spot in the browser market-share wars. But for all the excitement, it would be a real mistake to overlook Firefox; with the forthcoming release of Firefox 3.6, which is now available as a release candidate, Mozilla’s flagship browser is looking better than ever.
The Firefox Add-on platform is the most vibrant source of browser innovation in the world, with over 1.5 billion downloads and tens of thousands of add-ons. There’s been a lot of speculation over the past couple of days around the future of Firefox Add-ons, and how Jetpack fits into that future. There’s currently a lot of misinformation swirling about this topic and it’s making people very unhappy. We’re going to attempt to clear things up below…
A recent pitch from the folks opposing Oracle’s ownership of MySQL via acquisition of Sun Microsystems got me thinking. The plea, ‘Oracle can have Sun, but not MySQL’ may make sense to some, but to me it speaks to the irony of closing out Oracle or any company or anyone from open source. Upon further reflection and given 2010 is off to a roaring pace of M&A, I also began to wonder what the impact of the ‘Save MySQL’ campaign could be on open source in M&A, particularly if it was to successfully derail the acquisition or somehow decouple MySQL from Sun under Oracle?
Acquia will also offer a seminar series for U.S. federal, state, and local governments to discuss adoptions and best practices for government use. This is definitely a smart move, as risk-averse government agency IT decision makers will take comfort in the successes of their peers with Drupal Social Publishing.
Acquia appears poised to take advantage of the growing interest in open source and social media. Increased use of Drupal will open the door further to open source adoption within governments in the United States and worldwide. In doing so, Acquia is definitely playing its part as a founding member of Open Source for America.
The PHP development team recently introduced the latest version of the new PHP 5.3 branch, PHP 5.3.1. This version essentially does not change the essential core 5.3 PHP engine, but by focusing on stability and security, the PHP team has introduced more than 100 bug fixes and tweaks to the overall framework.
Somebody made a comment the other day about computers being a commodity item. It was stated that computers are thought of as no different to a television or radio. This comment sort of alarmed me because I do not think of computers in this manner. I don’t think that computers should be classed as a commodity item and below I say why.
A solution to the TLS renegotiation vulnerability discovered in the design of the SSL/TLS protocol early last November is on the horizon. The Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) has ammended the RFC 5246 specification (Transport Layer Security [TLS] Protocol Version 1.2) and introduced a new renegotiation_info TLS extension which will store a connection’s cryptographic information. The problem was caused by a flaw in the TLS protocol design that affects the parameter renegotiation of an existing TLS connection. Previously, the TLS protocol offered no conclusively authenticated associations between the client requests before and client requests after a TLS renegotiation. The new extension stores additional information to describe the state of a TLS connection (“secure_renegotiation”, “client_verify_data” and “server_verify_data”).
As the smoke clears following the case of Umar Farouk Abdul Mutallab, the failed Christmas Day “underpants bomber” of Northwest Airlines Flight 253 fame, there are just three simple points for us Westerners to take away.
First: It is completely impossible to prevent terrorists from attacking airliners.
Second: This does not matter. There is no need for greater efforts on security.
Third: A terrorist set fire to his own trousers, suffering eyewateringly painful burns to what Australian cricket commentators sometimes refer to as the “groinal area”, and nobody seems to be laughing. What’s wrong with us?
Consider that on this very day about 6,700 Americans will die…. Consider then that around 1,900 of the Americans who die today will be less than 65, and that indeed about 140 will be children. Approximately 50 Americans will be murdered today, including several women killed by their husbands or boyfriends, and several children who will die from abuse and neglect. Around 85 of us will commit suicide, and another 120 will die in traffic accidents.
Indeed, if one does not utter the magic word “terrorism,” the notion that it is actually in the best interests of the country for the government to do everything possible to keep its citizens safe becomes self-evident nonsense. Consider again some of the things that will kill 6,700 Americans today. The country’s homicide rate is approximately six times higher than that of most other developed nations; we have 15,000 more murders per year than we would if the rate were comparable to that of otherwise similar countries. Americans own around 200 million firearms, which is to say there are nearly as many privately owned guns as there are adults in the country. In addition, there are about 200,000 convicted murderers walking free in America today (there have been more than 600,000 murders in America over the past 30 years, and the average time served for the crime is about 12 years).
Of some 84,000 chemicals being used commercially in the United States, some 20 percent — or 17,000 — are kept secret not only from the public, but from medical professionals, state regulators and even emergency responders, according to a report at the Washington Post.
It cautions, “The list includes only pundits and (supposed) experts. That means the list doesn’t include policymakers such as Alan Greenspan and Ben Bernanke, because however wrong they may have been, policymakers and especially Fed chairmen are undeniably constrained in what they can say publicly. I strongly suspect that both Greenspan and Bernanke honestly believed that there was no housing bubble, but alas, we’ll never know for sure. The list also doesn’t include pundits/experts who were wrong only about the fallout of the collapse of the housing bubble that is, the extent to which the collapse of the housing bubble would harm the economy.”
Those who oppose smoking in movies aimed at young people planned to step up their assault on the science-fiction epic “Avatar” on Tuesday with advertisements in Hollywood trade papers that accuse the film of providing the equivalent of $50 million in free tobacco advertising.
The information about taxpayers subsidizing smoking in big-screen movies comes from a November, 2009 report by the University of California San Francisco titled “Taxpayer Subsidies for US Films with Tobacco Imagery” that examined taxpayer subsidies for youth-rated films (G, PG and PG-13).
Just as we cannot let the health insurance companies pretend they are “for reform” while secretly buying millions of dollars worth of attack ads against reform, we also cannot stand silent when newspapers outsource the writing of the “news” to groups advised by health insurance companies.
Currently, the Center’s website shows that Obama received $19,462,986 from the health sector, which includes health professionals ($11.7m), health services/HMOs ($1.4m), hospitals/nursing homes ($3.3m) and pharmaceuticals/health products ($2.1m). Miscellaneous health donations (from which Obama received $860,411) are also factored into the current total health sector numbers but are not accessible on the site.
14-01-10: Still conflicting reports coming out. It could be that Google has already lifted its own censorship measures. Or it could be that the censorship measures are still up, but because of the intense interest generated (and click-thrus) on sensitive subjects, small holes in the wall are being publicised and magnified.
It doesn’t matter any more: People are getting through the wall.
Last Friday, January 8, the University of Amsterdam (I’m with the competition) handed out an honorary doctorate to Harvard prof. Lawrence Lessig, known to you all (I may hope!) as one of the founding members of the wildly successful Creative Commons project. During the acceptance ceremony, he held one of his keynote presentations – and one that is required listening material for everyone. And with everyone – I mean everyone.
It is commonly supposed that, whatever its moral and theoretical standing, intellectual property is necessary for creators of written works to make a living and — even more importantly — to continue to create. Here, I will set aside the theoretical status of copyright, which is amply discussed in Stephan Kinsella’s Against Intellectual Property and Michele Boldrin and David Levine’s Against Intellectual Monopoly. I will focus on existing and emerging possibilities for writers to earn a living in a world where no copyrights exist.
Summary: The lobbyists still fight for software patents for their selfish reasons, even in New Zealand; surprising USPTO statistics; more patent backlash
TECHDIRT appears to have only just discovered the very crass proponent of software patents, Gene Quinn (mentioned here before [1, 2, 3, 4, 5]). He is making money from this. He is not a scientist, he’s in a meta-industry that exploits science for profit.
About a post that we mentioned here the other day (regarding patents), writes TechDirt:
Well Respected VC Firm Comes Out In Favor Of Independent Invention Defense Against Patent Infringement Lawsuits
Union Square Ventures has come out strongly in favor of an independent invention defense against patent infringement. This is great. I have no idea if I helped to make this come about, but a year ago, Union Square partner Fred Wilson had spoken out about how patents were harming his portfolio, and suggested some ways to fix the system (not including an independent invention defense). I responded with a post suggesting he consider an independent invention defense beyond his proposals, as it would really solve a lot of the problems. So it’s really fantastic to see the firm take a stand on such an important issue — proving once again what a lie it is to claim that VCs require patents.
Proposal: An Independent Inventor Defense Against Software Patents
I’m extremely excited to see Brad and Fred come out so strongly against software patents. I’ve been talking against this for a long time and I expect my rants against software patents are well known to any readers of this blog (if you aren’t familiar with them, feel free to indulge yourself if you are so inclined.) But this is the first time that I’m aware that any of my peers – other than my partners at Foundry Group – have come out so strongly in public against software patents.
The Against Monopoly Web site, a site that we definitely recommend, has published the following two denouncements of intellectual monopolies:
In a previous post, I noted the arbitrariness of copyright law in prohibiting editing a DVD to take out objectionable scenes, when presumably it would be legal to accomplish the same thing by other means-e.g., as I pointed out in a legal forum, by providing instructions to users to use to program a special DVD player that edits out the bad scenes “on the fly” in the user’s home.
A Swedish libertarian buddy, Johan Ridenfeldt, pointed me to this article (in Swedish), which describes libertarian (liberal) arguments against intellectual property, and also includes a review of the debate in Nyliberalen (The Neoliberal). He wrote, “I find this very positive. I’m involved (somewhat) in politics, and I have noticed that most of the libertarian young ones agree with us on IP [i.e., that it is problematic and unlibertarian]. This was not the case when I first started quoting you back when your Against IP article was in draft [in 2000 or so]. I used to post and recommend your working paper draft, and back then I was pretty alone in my views.”
It is often being said (propaganda with repetition) that patents help the United States maintain dominance in science and technology, but according to new numbers, more patents in the USPTO are being granted to non-US citizens/companies. Whose advantage is it now? Well, the lawyers, the trolls, and the monopolies of course. It’s not to do with geography but to do with class and occupation. It’s about protecting parasites.
According to IFI Patent Intelligence, a Wolters Kluwer Health business, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) issues a total of 167,350 utility patents in calendar year 2009, a 6.1% increase over 2008 and nearing the “all-time high” of 173,772 set in 2006. Forty-nine percent of those patents landed with U.S. firms, while 51% went to foreign companies, marking the second consecutive year U.S. companies lagged behind. Yet IFI Patent Intelligence points out that U.S. companies received about 7% more patents in 2009 than in 2008, while foreign firms experienced a 6.5% increase during the same time.
“New Zealand [is] pushing for software patents with a “technical effect”, every software changes the hardware, so patentable,” remarks the President of FFII, who points to this new page. He also promotes this conference and says: “Submit a paper for the Knowright2010 conference, deadline at the end of the month, FFII supporting the conference…” █
This security update resolves a privately reported vulnerability in Microsoft Windows. The vulnerability could allow remote code execution if a user viewed content rendered in a specially crafted Embedded OpenType (EOT) font in client applications that can render EOT fonts, such as Microsoft Internet Explorer, Microsoft Office PowerPoint, or Microsoft Office Word.
Subject: DN: www.cryptome.org; Registrar: Network Solutions; Host: Network Solutions – Demand for Immediate Take Down – Notice of Infringing Activity – MS Ref. 298757
Date: Tue, 5 Jan 2010 15:05:56 -0500
From: “DMCA” <DMCA[at]networksolutions.com>
Hi Mr. Young:
I am forwarding the below for your information. No further action is required.
Linda L. Larsen, Designated Agent
Network Solutions, LLC
From: Microsoft Anti Piracy Investigator #2 [mailto:internet2[at]microsoft-antipiracy.com]
Sent: Tuesday, January 05, 2010 8:17 AM
Subject: RE: DN: www.cryptome.org; Registrar: Network Solutions; Host: Network Solutions – Demand for Immediate Take Down – Notice of Infringing Activity – MS Ref. 298757
Hi Linda – I, James Young am the investigator that sent the takedown notice relating to this case. I see that as requested cryptome.org have removed the page located at http://cryptome.org/0001/ms-cofee.htm – Separately that the .zip located at cryptome.net is now offline too.
Summary: “Mixed source” will be off the menu at Novell if its semi- or pseudo-open products continue to fail as they already do
Novell calls itself a “mixed-source” company [1, 2, 3, 4], but to call the mixing of proprietary and Free “mixed-source” is like calling sand in water “mixed water”. It’s like saying that a lady is only “half pregnant”.
Mono is essentially Open Core*, which is a form of “mixed-source”. Its proponents were in total denial just before the TomTom case and hopefully they have woken up since then. Microsoft does sue Free software (even directly, not just indirectly [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6]) using software patents.
The Harvard Business Schools has just published this short new paper on “mixed-source” and Microsoft is mentioned there too. It’s filled with business propaganda terms like “intellectual property”, but anyway, it’s all there.
The open source (OS) movement is one model—it’s going strong after nearly 30 years and still has its die-hard supporters. Meanwhile, other firms try to maximize profits by keeping a tight, proprietary hold on all intellectual property. Increasingly, however, software companies are taking a “best of both worlds” approach by creating products that use a combination of OS and proprietary software code.
“Best of both worlds” is just a cliché; Mono uses a similar cliché, “best of breed”.
Thankfully, Mono is going nowhere in terms of adoption and one of the people behind Ximian, Nat Friedman, has just quit Novell. This does not mean that “open source [is] in trouble”, it just means that the Microsoft/Novell “mixed-source” vision (or ploy) is in trouble.
Friedman has been working on SUSE Studio in recent years which is now a commercial product. Unlike Mono (led by his Ximian co-founder De Icaza), Friedman is not sticking with Novell after the initial public commercial launch.
Summary: Microsoft’s vapourware tactics continue to expose themselves as key products are pushed back again and again; clarifications about “rental”, which is a permanent condition for all users of any version of Windows
You might think that, as an individual user, you own the operating system that came on your PC — but you’d be wrong. You can’t sell the Windows that’s pre-installed on your PC. You can sell a used copy of Windows, if you bought a copy and then deleted it from your computer. So, for example, if you bought a copy of Windows 7 to upgrade from your old PC’s pre-existing Vista, you can’t sell that copy of Vista, but you can sell the copy of Windows 7. This is one of the many reasons I prefer desktop Linux.
Are we entering a generation when people actually own their software, thanks to the GPL? Google does allow rooting of one’s own Android phone, unlike the Hype Company.
This morning we shared one story about the implications of DRM-laden books — books that are falsely advertised as ones that can be “purchased” when in fact they are only being “licensed” (for access by a person on his/her one rigid device while it lasts, unless/until shot down or confiscated remotely). █
Summary: The British schools system, misled by the Microsoft influence seeded inside BETCA, continues to misuse taxpayers’ money to make Microsoft’s monopoly stronger
WE HAVE been showing a lot of evidence recently of Microsoft’s means for hijacking the education systems around the world (civil education and participatory training, not just academic or obligatory). We won’t be writing about it again; instead, here are some previous posts that expose not only the way it works but extensive material on it (including leaked memos) as well:
Government Plugs Microsoft With Online Training Course
The government is promoting Microsoft’s proprietary software as part of a plan to get more UK adults online, despite arguing for greater adoption of open source in the past
Some open source supporters may object to elements of the new scheme however as, although the Online Basics course is supposed to be an independent education project, the site contains a link to Microsoft’s own learning network – Microsoft Digital Literacy – which includes guidance on how to use Microsoft products. In February 2009, the UK government said it intended to use open source to save £600 million a year and published guidelines the that effect but, despite this, the UK lags badly at open source, using it less than countries like Mali, open source activists said at a meeting in September.