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07.09.10

Links 9/7/2010: GIMP 2.6.10, Ardour 2.8.11 Released

Posted in News Roundup at 2:01 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Desktop

    • A New Era of Compiz

      By splitting the rendering framework into composite and opengl plugins, Compiz can be used as the known compositing window manager or as a backend for other 3D desktop programs such XRender or Clutter. Another significant change, decoration reparenting, will allow Compiz to run with decorations as non-compositing when used with the revamped GNOME or KDE Window Decorators. Integration with QT main loop and the creation of a KApplication provides better integration with KDE. A new DBus plugin will now use the screen number to identify the Compiz instance. A major redraw bug that caused ripping or skips in rendering was also fixed.

    • Blacklisting drivers for some KWin effects
    • Five and a Half Reasons I Prefer Linux (as a power user)

      Linux is growing in popularity for many reasons, and as an operating system it is many things to many people. While we all have our own reasons for liking Linux and open source, here are my top five (and a half!) reasons why, as a power user, I prefer to use Linux. You’ll notice that these reasons are quite a bit different from why I think Ubuntu makes a great operating system for Mom, which just goes to show how versatile Linux can be.

    • Windows vs. Linux

      Linux and the GNU project’s software was developed to offer an alternative to proprietary software. It is a system of open source and distributed under the GPL, i.e. anybody can get it, make changes and redistribute it. Although there are paid versions of Linux, but the vast majority of distributions is completely free. You can download the ISO images at no cost. Additionally, you can make changes to adapt it to suit your needs. Above all, you have the freedom to pass a free Linux distribution to your friends without committing software piracy.

      Windows is a closed source and proprietary software. The price for the acquisition of Windows operating system is already something that one could consider prohibitively expensive and complicated for a personal computer user.

  • Audiocasts

    • Podcast Season 2 Episode 12

      In this episode: The first Mozilla 4 beta is here while Nokia is moving rapidly forward with MeeGo for mobiles. We report back on our You Dare Us challenge and hear Paul tackle Python.

    • The Linux Link Tech Show #361 [Ogg]
    • FLOSS Weekly 126: AskoziaPBX

      AskoziaPBX is a complete telephone system. It can speak to nearly any telephony technology in the world and is configured via a highly intuitive WebGUI. Designed to run on low-resource systems.

    • Linux Outlaws 157 – Horny, Horny, Horny

      On this episode of Linux Outlaws: A big announcement (kind of), ASCAP declares war on Creative Commons, Bilski comes down, new Fedora project leader, Microsoft kills Kin and Apple drops the ball on the iPhone 4.

  • Instructionals/Technical

  • Games

    • Five best non-free Linux games of 2010

      All of these games are cross-platform, so you can enjoy them on other operating system as well. Theres’ variety to be had, too. Single player, multiplayer, at home or online, role playing, classic strategy, puzzle solving. I have not intended to have balance in this list, but the games kind of naturally filled the right spots.

      I recommend you start with demos and trials and see what gives. I believe you will have found a new collection of great items to play and explore. Along with the freeware collection, you have the rest of 2010 to get convinced in my choices. You won’t be disappointed.

    • Stuff to Play!

      While I was on sabbatical, Protektor sent in a whole mess of Linux games we’ve yet to mention:

      * Summoning Wars, a dungeon hack game
      * Super Tux Kart, an enhanced version of Tux Kart
      * Dragon History – a Czech adventure game that runs under ScummVM
      * Shotgun Debugger – a 2D top-down shooter

      [...]

  • Distributions

  • Red Hat Family

    • Red Hat grows partner ecosystem
    • Fedora

      • OLPC to add multitouch screen to future XO-1.75 laptop

        Nonprofit organization One Laptop Per Child on Thursday said it is adding a multitouch screen to the upcoming XO-1.75 laptop and is modifying software to take advantage of the new hardware.

        The XO-1.75 with a touch-sensitive 8.9-inch screen will start shipping next year. The laptop will run on an Arm processor and is the successor to the current XO-1.5 laptop, which runs on a Via x86 processor. OLPC will also add a multitouch screen on the next-generation XO-3 tablet, which is due to ship in 2012.

        Customers could be interested in buying XO-1.75 laptops as low-power replacements to existing XO-1 machines, which don’t have touch capabilities, said Chris Ball, lead software engineer for OLPC, in an e-mail.

      • OLPC: Upgrading X0-1 to new SugarLabs Release

        I saw an announcement the other day about a development OS release (os16) for the OLPC XO-1 laptop that basically brings it into parity with the release on the XO-1.5. I downloaded it, got a developer key, unlocked an OLPC, and figured out how to install it. Once you become familiar with the process, it is actually easy and straight forward. I even played with the FORTH-based firmware for the first time.

      • 10 things that will make you want to use Fedora again

        Jack Wallen itemizes the improvements that have made him a Fedora fan again.

  • Debian Family

    • Debian on desktop systems

      What I expected to happen some time ago, is finally becoming reality: Debian is now my favourite distribution for desktop systems.

    • Catching up with Canonical’s CEO, Jane Silber – exclusive interview

      The most exciting thing is seeing the traction Ubuntu has as a mainstream choice for consumers. The alignment between Ubuntu, the community, developers and the hardware ecosystem is really coming into its own at this point. In my new role I am involved in more strategic discussions with our partners and customers, and the road ahead is looking very exciting.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Open source software battle heats up

      In parallel with the rapid development of mobile computing, various Linux-based OS pop up one after another—from Android, LiMo, MeeGo, Ubuntu to webOS.

    • Up-selling Fails

      Huge inventories of netbooks resulted because people wanted cheaper netbooks. Those inventories are now cleared but OEMs are taking a wait-and-see attitude before offering for sale the latest Wintel systems. Even the $11 price increase for the latest Atom is seen as too much. Wouldn’t a $50 reduction for using GNU/Linux look good about now? Wouldn’t a $50 reduction for using ARM look good about now?

Free Software/Open Source

  • Open source financial analytics startup OpenGamma comes out of stealth mode

    Kirk Wylie, CEO of London based startup OpenGamma, has announced the company has come out of stealth mode and in the coming months, will be presenting its financial analytics platform to the world. The company is developing a common infrastructure and applications for financial services firms. The platform unifies batch and live calculations to create more consistency in risk and analytics calculations and is designed to be the core technology in batch risk analysis, commercial trading systems, bespoke trading systems and event driven alerting systems.

  • Events

  • Web Browsers

    • Another round of browser benchmarks, this time with Safari, the not so fastest browser on Earth… :P
    • Mozilla

      • First look: Firefox 4 Beta 1 shines on HTML5

        You’ve no doubt heard about or even seen Firefox 4′s new Chrome-like interface. More important are the many new features generally lumped together under the catchall standard HTML5, a specification that’s still a draft but has become more of a rallying cry for AJAX, JavaScript, endless tags, and life beyond plug-ins.

      • More Details on Features in Firefox 4 Beta 1

        Firefox 4 Beta 1 is now available and ready for testing. This first version is filled with dozens of new features and improvements. Here are more in depth explanations of some of the Firefox 4 Beta 1 features from the Firefox team…

      • Once around the Web with Firefox 4 Beta 1

        I want, I really want Firefox to become a top-of-the-line Web browser again. It was Firefox, after all, that broke IE’s (Internet Explorer) strangle-hold on Web browsers. Even Microsoft owes Firefox some gratitude. If Firefox hadn’t pushed Microsoft into making IE into a decent Web browser, many of us might still be stuck with crapware like IE 6. Unfortunately, I’m not sure Firefox 4 is going to get Firefox back into competition with IE 8, much less, what I see as today’s leading Web browser, Google’s Chrome 5.

  • Education

    • Considering Open Source Software for K-12

      IT directors across the country are implementing open source software in their K-12 districts–a decision often prompted by the improving quality of open source options, as well as cost savings.

      Selection of OSS is sometimes a value-added option when the commercial version would never be financially feasible. In other cases, IT directors are replacing existing solutions with OSS, instigated by license agreements that are ending, the need to refurbish old computers, or the purchase of netbooks.

      While there are no recent surveys to measure use of open source software (OSS), anecdotal evidence reflects growing interest in–and use of–alternatives to proprietary software.

      A few years ago, an OSS talk at the National Educational computing Conference (NECC; now ISTE) would draw about five attendees, and there would be just a “smattering of people” in the open source lab. Now the rooms are full, said Alex Inman, director of technology for Whitfield School in St. Louis, MO.

  • Business

    • Do customers want open core?

      There is renewed and meaningful discussion going about open core with several good insights and arguments: Simon Phipps, Mark Radcliffe, Stephen O’Grady and our own Matt Aslett to name a few.

  • BSD

    • Benchmarks Of FreeBSD 8.1 RC2 Against FreeBSD 8.0, Ubuntu Linux

      FreeBSD 8.1 is slated to be released this month as the first significant update to FreeBSD since the rollout of the 8.0 release last November. With the second release candidate of FreeBSD 8.1 having just been made available a few days back, we have conducted a set of tests comparing the performance of FreeBSD 8.1 RC2 versus FreeBSD 8.0 and an Ubuntu 10.10 development snapshot.

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

    • Could Free Software Exist Without Copyright?

      A couple of days ago, I was writing about how Richard Stallman’s GNU GPL uses copyright as a way of ensuring that licensees share code that they distribute – because if they don’t, they are breaching the GPL, and therefore lose their protection against claims of copyright infringement.

      That’s all very well, but as many people have pointed out, this does result in the paradoxical situation that the GNU GPL actually *depends* on copyright, an intellectual monopoly, in order to spread intellectual freedom. Moreover, it seems to doom free software into a kind of symbiosis with copyright, forcing it to remain a supporter of that monopoly, since without it, the approach used to make the GPL so powerful would not work.

      This is obviously a slightly troubling prospect, so a little while ago I thought I’d raise the point with RMS himself, since he was bound to be aware of the issue, and presumably had a solution (I hoped). This issue has come up a few times in recent months, so I thought it might be worth publishing his answers to my questions to shed some light on this important topic.

  • Project Releases

    • Samba 4 now due in 2011; SMB2 and SMB/CIFS protocol docs done

      The Samba team isn’t expecting to release Samba 4 until the first half of 2011 (optimistically) but work on support for Microsoft’s SMB2 — and older SMB/CIFS — has moved ahead quite nicely.

      Samba leader Jeremy Allison said support for SMB2 — which was introduced in the Windows Vista client — is finished and will be made available for testing in the next significant Samba release.

    • GIMP 2.6.10 Released

      Unfortunately a rather bad bug sneaked into GIMP 2.6.9, so here’s another release in the stable GIMP 2.6 series to fix this issue.

    • Ardour 2.8.11 is released
    • GNU Dico 2.1 released

      GNU Dico is an extensible modular dictionary server with a set of database modules, a command line client utility and a web interface.

    • GNU rush-1.7 released
  • Government

    • Dump Microsoft, Use Linux to Save Money, U.K. Officials Suggest

      U.K. government staff suggested replacing Microsoft Corp. operating systems on computers with free alternatives in response to a call for ideas for Prime Minister David Cameron’s cost-cutting drive.

      Cameron asked the 600,000 government workers last month to make suggestions on saving money as his administration seeks to cut Britain’s record budget deficit. Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne today published a sample of the 56,000 submitted ideas, which including abandoning Microsoft, switching office lights off and centralizing stationery procurement.

      “In terms of spending less, what about migrating the whole of government (the NHS, education etc.) from Microsoft products to Linux and open-source software like Openoffice,” read one of the suggestions displayed on the Treasury website. Two of the 31 listed proposals, whose authors were not named, suggested dropping Redmond, Washington-based Microsoft.

      Open-source software such as Linux and Openoffice offers free or very cheap alternatives to Microsoft’s Windows and Office, the world’s most popular operating system and productivity software. Osborne said before the Conservatives won power in the May 6 election that he favored the idea.

    • South Korea: Super fast, and finally free

      Imagine a country that has one of the best Internet infrastructures in the world, and yet its government effectively forbids the use of GNU/Linux through a requirement that everyone employ a decade-old Windows-only technology for many key online transactions. That country is South Korea, where 1 Gbits/second Internet connections are planned for 2012; and that Windows-only technology is ActiveX.

      [...]

      Either way, it’s great news for the long-suffering South Koreans, who finally get to choose which technology they use in their daily lives – after more than a decade of enforced Internet Explorer and Windows use. It’s also great news for open source, which gets a chance to compete on a level playing field – something that Microsoft keeps calling for whenever the EU proposes favouring open source, and yet somehow never mentions when that field is already steeply tilted in its own favour, as has been the case in South Korea.

      That new opportunity is important, because of South Korea’s advanced Internet infrastructure. It means that the open source community there can now work on creating advanced applications that explore the possibilities of that kind of bandwidth, and that can be used by South Korean businesses and citizens in their everyday lives – something that hitherto has been impossible. It would be nice to think this may lead to a sudden outpouring of free software creativity, but the reality is probably that it will take a good many years to recover from what was probably the worst Microsoft monoculture on the planet.

  • Licensing

  • Open Data

    • UK Government to Crowdsource Spending Cuts on Facebook

      This could get very messy, very quickly. Multiple reports have emerged overnight that the UK government is to consult the public over how to cut public spending via a dedicated Facebook page.

    • A Big Part of COINS was not Published

      I had been reading about the Whole of Government Accounts (WGA) — a project to provide a really good detailed overview of government finances (more information in this previous post).

      I was therefore expecting to see the local council assets and accruals data of the sort that is recorded in the L-packs as well as central government spending captured annually in the C-packs. But it wasn’t there.

    • AOL Launches Open-Source Maps Projects In U.S., UK

      The new fund will support projects in specific communities—it over the next year to help expand and enhance the geographic data available to developers, designers and other users as part of AOL’s commitment to open-source technology.

  • Open Access/Content

    • Does Creative Commons need more court cases?

      I do not think that CC licences, or any licence to that effect, requires a court decision in order to be valid. There are thousands and thousands of commercial End-User Licence Agreements that are never tested in court, yet they manage to have legal effects and are usually followed to the letter by its users without producing a conflict. True, many licences contain clauses that when analysed by legal practitioners and scholars may seem doubtful. But even then a court case is required to declare the clauses invalid. One could say that a licence is valid until proven otherwise.

  • Programming

    • Why you want PHP-5.3.2
    • The Haskell 2010 report

      The Haskell 2010 report was published in July 2010, and is the current definition of the Haskell language. It is freely available online, in the following formats:

      * read it online: The Haskell 2010 Report
      * PDF [1368K]
      * HTML (tar + gzip) [336K]

  • Standards/Consortia

    • Public Review of OpenDocument v1.2

      To OASIS members, Public Announce Lists:

      The OASIS Open Document Format for Office Applications (OpenDocument) TC has recently approved the following specification as a Committee Draft and approved the package for public review:

      Open Document Format for Office Applications (OpenDocument) Version 1.2

      This standard specifies the characteristics of an XML-based application-independent and platform-independent digital document file format, as well as the characteristics of software applications which read, write and process such documents. This standard is applicable to document authoring, editing, viewing, exchange and archiving, including text documents, spreadsheets, presentation graphics, drawings, charts and similar documents commonly used by personal productivity software applications.

Leftovers

  • The emerging online giants

    THEY may not have the name recognition of a Google or a Yahoo!, but they can claim to belong in the same league. The websites of Digital Sky Technologies (DST) account for more than 70% of page-views on the Russian-language internet. Naspers is Africa’s biggest media group, both offline and online. And Tencent is China’s largest internet company by market capitalisation—and the third-largest in the world.

  • Science

    • Solar plane completes historic 24-hour flight

      An experimental solar-powered plane landed safely Thursday after completing its first 24-hour test flight, proving that the aircraft can collect enough energy from the sun during the day to stay aloft all night.

  • Security/Aggression

    • ‘Sneaky’ Wandsworth Council makes million on station CCTV

      More than 21,000 fines of between £60 and £120 were issued for motoring offences such as stopping to drop off family and friends.

      Neil Bennett, 60, from Blandfield Road in Balham, was caught twice in the same night in Grant Road behind Clapham Junction when he went to collect someone.

      He said: “For a total of 40 seconds outside the station, the fine was £240. I didn’t realise I wasn’t allowed to do it, there wasn’t adequate signage.

    • Iranians still facing death by stoning despite ‘reprieve’
    • Skype’s encryption procedure partly exposed

      Developer Sean O’Neill, famous in cryptographic circles for designing the EnRUPT hash algorithm, has released an open source Skype library that emulates the modified version of the RC4 encryption algorithm used by Skype. Skype chose to modify key generation for the stream cipher to make its product incompatible with other IM clients and ensure that it remained a closed system. However, initial analysis suggests that O’Neill’s publication does not mean that Skype’s encryption can be considered ‘cracked’. Further study will be needed to determine whether key expansion and initialisation vector generation are secure.

  • Environment

    • Over 25% of flowers face extinction – many before they are even discovered

      More than one-in-four of all flowering plants are under threat of extinction according to the latest report to confirm the ongoing destruction of much of the natural world by human activity.

      As a result, many of nature’s most colourful specimens could be lost to the world before scientists even discover them, claims the research, published today in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B.

    • Crypto-Forests and Guerrilla Gardening

      My imagination was ignited a few weeks ago when I came across a post on BLDGBLOG about crypto-forests: forgotten patches of urban land where nature has taken its course. What we call weeds are actually demonstrations of the irrepressible force of nature–plants overtaking urban areas designed to keep nature at bay.

      BLDGBLOG’s Geoff Manaugh describes crypto-forests quite lyrically: “Weed patches in which the earliest emergent traces of a thicket can be found; clusters of trees growing semi-feral on the edges of railroad yards; forgotten courtyards sprouting with random saplings unplanted by any hand.” It’s reminiscent of the scenario David Byrne vividly predicted in the Talking Heads song “Nothing But Flowers,” but smaller in scope and without the apocalypse.

    • US should prepare for many more heatwaves, says government-funded report

      Heat waves like the one now roasting the Eastern Seaboard are likely to become commonplace over the next 30 years, say scientists at Stanford University – even if global temperatures rise by only one degree Celcius.

    • New Batfish Species Found Under Gulf Oil Spill

      Researchers have discovered two previously unknown species of bottom-dwelling fish in the Gulf of Mexico, living right in the area affected by the BP oil spill.

      Researchers identified new species of pancake batfishes, a flat fish rarely seen because of the dark depths they favor. They are named for the clumsy way they “walk” along the sea bottom, like a bat crawling.

    • Sea Shepherd man sentenced for whaler assault
  • Finance

    • Judge Defers Civil Lawsuit for Adviser in Fraud Case

      A civil lawsuit brought by federal regulators against a financial adviser suspected of stealing millions of dollars from celebrity clients was temporarily halted on Thursday by a federal judge in Manhattan who said a criminal case against the adviser should be dispensed with first.

    • Judge Defers Civil Lawsuit for Adviser in Fraud Case
    • New Paper: “Shadow Banking”
    • Unemployment, borrowing, retail sales paint mixed picture of economic recovery

      More than 450,000 people filed new claims for unemployment benefits last week, as joblessness continued to hamper the U.S. economy and other new economic indicators reflected mixed signs about the recovery.

    • New Claims From Jobless at Lowest Since May

      First-time requests for jobless aid dropped by 21,000 to a seasonally adjusted 454,000, the Labor Department said Thursday. The decline takes claims to their lowest level since early May, erasing the increases of the last two months.

    • World economic recovery driven by global imbalances

      The catastrophic economic downturn that began two years ago was supposed to shake up the global economy, ending an era in which Americans consumed too much and saved and exported too little.

    • IMF calls for deficit cuts in US

      The International Monetary Fund is calling for the United States to make a stronger effort to curb its budget deficits.

    • Goldman Sachs Executive to Advise Head of Canada’s Central Bank, a Former Goldman Sachs Executive
    • Goldman Sachs’ Credibility in Question: FCIC Chairman

      “The commission had some real questions of credibility about whether an institution as sophisticated as Goldman can’t tell whether it’s making money or losing money on the derivatives business,” said Angelides. “They have 1.2 million derivatives contracts and it just seems logical that they should be able to produce the management information to show us the scale of its business.”

    • Mudslinging Comes Full Circle for House Oversight’s Darrell Issa

      There’s no indication, at this point, that any sort of quid pro quo took place, nor is Issa mentioned directly in the suit. But a three million dollar windfall for a congressman does seem like the sort of scandal in which Issa would usually take a keen interest.

      In addition, CityBeat goes on to detail Issa’s extensive investments in Goldman Sachs’ High Yield Fund and a potential conflict of interest that may have occurred when he launched an investigation against the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for the timing of their fraud lawsuit against Goldman.

    • Is Goldman Sachs getting a bad rap?

      Meg Whitman, gubernatorial candidate in California, has been tainted for her associations with the company. But a commentary in the New York Times notes rightly: “Despite the political haymaking, the truth is that Goldman Sachs did nothing differently in the years leading up to the crisis than did other firms of its stature. Nothing has come to light in any of the very public recent assaults on the firm that also could not be discovered by looking through millions of documents at every other Wall Street firm with large trading and capital-markets businesses.”

    • Panel Chairman Presses Goldman Sachs on Its Mortgage Bets’ Market Effect

      Goldman was among the most aggressive players on Wall Street in marking down the value of mortgage bonds as the financial crisis brewed, and ultimately benefited in protecting itself from the housing downfall. A.I.G., on the other hand, had a large positive bet on housing through the billions of dollars of mortgage securities that it insured for Goldman and other banks.

    • The Kanjorski Surprise – Now It Gets Interesting

      The bank lobbyists, it turns out, missed one. They and their congressional allies were able to gut the Volcker Rule, the Lincoln Amendment, and almost everything else that could have had a meaningful effect on the industry.

  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

    • Turkey faces legal challenge over YouTube ban

      The case, in which the Internet Technologies Association argues that the restrictions illegally discriminate against millions of users, is the latest front in an ongoing dispute that raises questions about free speech in a country attempting to join the EU.

    • Filter delayed for a year by RC content review

      Communications Minister Stephen Conroy this morning announced a number of wide-ranging modifications to the Government’s controversial mandatory internet filtering policy, including a delay of at least a year to the project while the state and Federal governments review the Refused Classification category of content which the filter would block.

    • US private Bradley Manning charged with leaking Iraq killings video

      • Film shows airstrike that killed 12 and crew laughter
      • Analyst accused of trying to bring discredit on forces

    • France, Netherlands seek to halt Internet censorship

      France and the Netherlands called Thursday for international guidelines to prevent private firms from exporting high-tech equipment that could be used for Internet censorship.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Why Kenya’s Attempt To Put Intellectual Property Rights In Its Constitution Is A Mistake

      A review of the Kenyan constitution has been undergoing for a long time, and only now has a final draft proposal for a new constitution been released. But, despite the stated aims of freedom, democracy, participation and the free exchange of ideas (pdf), the released draft seems far from that ideal: Kenya is taking the Euro-American route to heavier information restrictions, including more copyright, more patents and more private knowledge monopolies, instead of keeping their legal environment open to creativity, participation and sharing.

      [...]

      Intellectual property law is still based in the nation state, but is very much shaped globally. A reform in one part of the world does not go without consequences in other parts, but, contrary to what some may imagine, the effects are rarely beneficial to either party.

      An approval of the intellectual property rights provisions in the Kenyan constitution could come to be an example of that.

    • Move over Mexico! India Hosts Another Model Right to Information Law

      While India’s Right To Information laws have received widespread acclaim in the media for ousting bureaucrats in what appears to be a revolution in local government accountability, less conspicuous reforms such as the low costs associated with processing requests in Mexico deserve equal attention. In the day-to-day implementation of an effective access to information regime, it’s often the small things that make a difference.

    • EFF Celebrates 20th Anniversary With New Animation by Nina Paley

      July 10, 2010 marks EFF’s 20th anniversary! To thank you for your support over these two decades, please enjoy this new animation created especially for us by celebrated cartoonist and free culture activist Nina Paley. This short cartoon highlights some of the reasons why EFF is here.

    • Copyrights

      • ‘Hollywood Accounting’ Losing In The Courts

        If you follow the entertainment business at all, you’re probably well aware of “Hollywood accounting,” whereby very, very, very few entertainment products are technically “profitable,” even as they earn studios millions of dollars. A couple months ago, the Planet Money folks did a great episode explaining how this works in very simple terms. The really, really, really simplified version is that Hollywood sets up a separate corporation for each movie with the intent that this corporation will take on losses. The studio then charges the “film corporation” a huge fee (which creates a large part of the “expense” that leads to the loss). The end result is that the studio still rakes in the cash, but for accounting purposes the film is a money “loser” — which matters quite a bit for anyone who is supposed to get a cut of any profits.

      • No Easy Answers in the Copyright Debate

        I still think that if something is available for sale legitimately, you should pay for it (books, music, photos, movies, sheet music). A lot of the Bach, Scriabin and Rachmaninoff in Mr. Hawley’s collection is certainly available, and handing it to friends on a flash drive is absolutely depriving the publishers of their revenue. True, the composers are long dead, but editing and publishing sheet music is still worth something.

        It’s those obscure, out-of-print, not-available-anywhere items in his collection that make a tougher case. How many hours are you obligated to research and dig just to find out if something is available for sale? In this case, the barriers to a legitimate purchase are ridiculously high. Isn’t digital piracy justified in that case?

    • ACTA

      • Greens call for ACTA transparency

        The Greens/ EFA group yesterday adopted an urgent appeal for transparency in the negotiations on the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA). With this action, the Greens/EFA protest against the decision by ACTA negotiators to keep a new version of the draft treaty secret after the 9th negotiation round concluded in Switzerland on 1 July. This decision clearly ignores the European Parliament’s Resolution adopted by a grand majority in March 2010. The Resolution clearly carried an expectation of a continuous policy of transparency. But instead, there was a one-time release of a draft text in April designed as a piecemeal appeasement of the parliament, and then again after a complete lack of transparency. The Commission’s flagrant disregard for the demands of the Parliament is completely unacceptable.

    • Digital Economy Bill

      • ISPs mark disapproval of the Digital Economy Bill

        The great and the good of the internet world turned out in force last night at the London Marriott, DJed and evening gowned, to learn who had won prizes at the ISPA annual awards dinner. What a difference a year makes: last year the talk was all around safety, particularly for children. Last night the focus had shifted, with digital economy and the right way to fund creativity on the net very much to the fore.

Clip of the Day

CLUG Talk – 30 October 2009 – Netbooks (2009)


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  14. Microsoft's Massive Tax Evasion Becomes Better Known

    A new report about Microsoft's admission that it plays dirty tricks with tax (sometimes using moles in government) is increasing awareness of Microsoft's criminal aspects



  15. Links 25/8/2014: China's Linux Revolution Imminent

    Links for the day



  16. Links 24/8/2014: GNU/Linux Specialisation and Benchmarks

    Links for the day



  17. Links 23/8/2014: GNU/Linux Growth

    Links for the day



  18. Microsoft-Funded Attacks on Android Security and Patent/Copyright

    A look back at examples of people who smear Android and are receiving (or received) money from Microsoft



  19. Blowback in Chile and Munich After Microsoft Intervention

    Microsoft's attacks on the digital sovereignty of countries involves lobbying, corruption, an attack on standards (e.g. ODF), an attack on FOSS policies, and even an attack on accurate reporting (truth itself)



  20. The End of Microsoft is Nigh

    A look back at a tough year for Microsoft and a not-so-promising future



  21. Links 22/8/2014: Linux Foundation LFCS, LFCE

    Links for the day



  22. UPS Burned by Microsoft Windows, Gives Away Massive Number of Credit Card Details

    UPS is the latest victim of Microsoft's shoddy back door with software on top of it (Windows); attempts to blame FOSS for data compromise actually divert attention from the real culprit, which is proprietary software



  23. Microsoft's Funding of ALEC and Other Systemic Corruption

    Microsoft role in writing of laws by proxy, via groups such as ALEC



  24. Microsoft is Still Preying on British Taxpayers, Playing Politics

    Some news from the UK showing how Microsoft uses politics to extract money out of taxpayers, irrespective of their preferences



  25. Microsoft's Patent Troll Intellectual Ventures is Collapsing as 20% of Staff Laid Off

    More good news regarding the demise of patents as Microsoft's leading patent proxy is collapsing more rapidly than anyone ever imagined and software patents too are collectively doubted



  26. Links 21/8/2014: Conferences of Linux Foundation, Elephone Emerges

    Links for the day



  27. Links 20/8/2014: Linux Event, GNOME Milestone

    Links for the day



  28. Corruption Watch: Microsoft Lobbying Designed to Kill Chile's Free Software Policy and Promote Microsoft With Subsidies, More Dirty Tricks Emerge in Munich

    icrosoft is systematically attacking migrations to GNU, Linux and Free software, using dirty tricks, as always



  29. Vista 8 Such a Disaster That Even Microsoft Cannot Cope With It, Vapourware Tactics Start Early

    Microsoft's Windows-powered services are failing and Windows gets bricked by Microsoft patches, whereupon we are seeing yet more of Microsoft's vapourware tactics (focusing in imaginary, non-existent versions of Windows)



  30. On BlackBerry and Other Patent Trolls

    A roundup regarding patent trolls, starting with the bigger and latest joiner, BlackBerry's new patents apparatus


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