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09.04.10

Links 4/9/2010: Huawei and Android Phones, Toshiba and Android Tablets

Posted in News Roundup at 4:57 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

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Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Navigating a Dual World: GNU/Linux and Windows

    I did not mention one last major area in which I navigate two worlds, the area of administering my websites. I use GNU/Linux on all of my servers. However, I have to be able to talk to these servers using either my GNU/Linux machines or my Windows machine. What allows me to do this is the standard and open communication protocols that allow computers to talk regardless of what operating system is installed: http, ftp, and ssh, to name a few. The beauty of the Internet is that the communications protocols used are fully documented and this documentation is made available to everyone. Support for these protocols can then be built into every operating system by default.The Internet is becoming an operating system unto itself, and the traditional computer operating systems are becoming more and more transparent. The common primary goal of most computing devices today is to connect to the Internet to do work. The duality of the dual environment is becoming less important with each passing day. However, in the near future, navigating a dual OS environment will remain a valuable skill to have.

  • Server

    • IBM Code Unfetters Virtual Workloads

      One is KVM (Kernel-based Virtualization), a hypervisor technology that has been incorporated into the Linux kernel and is the cornerstone of Red Hat’s virtualization strategy. It has also been inserted into the Libvirt virtualization toolkit, which supports both the Citrix Xen hypervisor and the VMware hypervisors.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

  • Distributions

    • Red Hat Family

      • Fedora

        • Fedora 13 update: A month and a half or so in

          I’ve been running Fedora 13′s Xfce spin on my new Lenovo G555 laptop for about a month and a half now, and I’m very much impressed with the performance, functionality and aggressive update policy even in an already aging (by Fedora standards) release.

          [...]

          Firefox has been great. I don’t run into any of the problems I’ve had on my older hardware in terms of speed. I’m not happy with the amount of CPU the 32-bit Flash player (in the 64-bit wrapper) is eating up, but it’s manageable. Java performance in my sole use of it (a photo-upload helper) has been great.

    • Debian Family

      • Canonical/Ubuntu

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Pandigital launches a 7-inch Android e-reader at IFA 2010

      Called Novel, the 540g e-reader has an 800×600 colour TFT LCD touchscreen with virtual keyboard and has software for the downloading and presentation of e-books. It comes in black or white and runs Android 2.1, with a Samsung ARM 11 mobile processor, 1GB of memory, WiFi, a 1,600mAhr battery, accelerometers for portrait or landscape orientation and an SD card slot for up to 32GB. It can also be used as an alarm clock.

    • Phones

      • Nokia/MeeGo

        • WeTab is based on MeeGo
        • More MeeGo screenshots surface, shows promise

          You may recall that MeeGo is a new smartphone OS from Intel and Nokia and it merges the Maemo and Moblin platforms. It is expected to be a modern OS on par with the iPhone and Android, and the screen shots we’ve seen do look pretty good.

          The screenshot above shows a little of the multitasking interface, which kind of looks like a mix of the way Android and webOS handle this. It should also have little carousel animations and other flourishes for visual flair.

      • Android

    • Tablets

      • TOC’s Wednesday devices, gadgets and ereaders update

        With the IFA Consumer Electronics Unlimited techno-smorgasbord set to open this Friday, there’s a lot of buzz going around about upcoming announcements and unveilings. Much of the pre-show buzz is centered around Android-based competition for the Apple iPad.

      • Android Tablet Deluge Is Just Beginning

        Archos continues to embrace Android in a big way. Yesterday they announced not one, not two, but five new Android ‘tablets.’ They range in size from a 2.8″ screen (which is why I put tablets in quotes) to 10.1″. All of them are running Android 2.2, but sadly, none of them have the Android Market included. Instead they’ll be running Archos’ AppsLib. The top of the line Archos 101 has a 1 Ghz ARM Cortex A8 processor, a 10.1″, 1024×600 capacitive touch screen, 720P video playback capability, HDMI out, front facing camera and a kickstand, all for $300. It should be out in mid-October. CrunchGear has a full rundown of all 5 models.

      • Toshiba touts £329 Folio Android tablet
      • Samsung Galaxy Tab Rooted… A Month Before Release

        The folks at Sera-Apps, a German group of Android developers, have not only managed to get their hands on a prototype of the Samsung Galaxy Tab a month before the device goes on sale, but they managed to root the device at IFA, the world’s largest consumer electronics show being held in Germany.

Free Software/Open Source

  • Google Open Sources More of Wave So Developers Can Take Advantage

    Google has given an update on its immediate plans for Google Wave. As you probably know, the company recently announced that it would be shutting down Google Wave as a standalone product, thought Google said it would preserve the technology behind Wave for future use and integration with other Google products.

  • Events/Awards

    • Welcome to the 2010 Open Source Awards

      The Open Source Awards is an annual online event held by Packt Publishing to distinguish excellence among Open Source projects.

      [...]

      The nominations will end on September 17.

  • Openness/Sharing

    • Mark Waid on Delivery, Content, and the Gulf Between

      And I’ll tell you why. It’s not because people “like stealing.” It’s because the greatest societal change in the last five years is that we are entering an era of sharing. Twitter and YouTube and Facebook–they’re all about sharing. Sharing links, sharing photographs, sending some video of some cat doing something stupid–that’s the era we’re entering. And whether or not you’re sharing things that technically aren’t yours to share, whether or not you’re angry because you see this as a “generation of entitlement,” that’s not the issue–the issue is, it’s happening, and the internet’s ability to reward sharing has reignited this concept that the public domain has cultural value. And I understand if you are morally outraged about it and you believe to your core that an entire generation is criminal and they’re taking food off your table, I respect that.

    • Open Data

  • Programming

    • Day of The Dead: Web Drives Strong Demand for Java Skills

      Anyway the point of this post is really just to riff on the data from simplyhired, as per the graph above. A 59% increase in bobs since January 2009? Not bad for a dead technology. Java has plenty of runway left and plenty of room for innovation.

  • Standards/Consortia

    • Google Now Indexes SVG Files

      Google is now indexing SVG files. SVG, which stands for scalable vector graphics, is a widely-deployed, royalty-free, XML-based format for vector graphics and support for interactivity. The format was developed and is maintained by the W3C SVG Working Group.

Leftovers

  • Why Wasn’t The AP Able To Get A Better Deal From Google?

    And other AP officials had also said they wanted major news search engines, including presumably Google News, to feature “the original source or the most authoritative source”—frequently the AP—at the top of their results. Curley had said the AP would only work with “those who use our principles” saying that “if you can’t do that, or if you won’t do that, let’s not waste time.”

  • HP Agrees to Pay $55 Million to Settle Gov’t Fraud Charges

    Hewlett-Packard will pay the U.S. government US$55 million to settle allegations that it defrauded the U.S. General Service Administration and other agencies by paying kickbacks to systems integrators in exchange for recommendations that agencies purchase HP products, the U.S. Department of Justice announced Monday.

  • Accenture, Cisco and Sun Still Face Kickbacks Charges

    After recent settlements by Hewlett-Packard and EMC in a long-standing government contracting fraud case, three major IT and consulting companies are still embroiled in lawsuits brought by two former insiders.

    Lawsuits alleging a widespread kickback scheme among U.S. government IT contractors remain active against Accenture, Cisco Systems and Sun Microsystems, according to court documents and a lawyer for whistleblowers Norman Rille and Neal Roberts. Rille, a former manager for Accenture, and Roberts, a former partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers, filed the lawsuits in 2004 in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Arkansas.

  • HP Settles False Claims, Kickback Charges for $55 Million

    Not long ago, Apple was in the headlines after a former manager was indicted for receiving kickbacks from suppliers in Asia in exchange for information that would help them land contracts with the Cupertino, Calif.-based company. Now it’s HP’s turn for a kickback scandal.

  • Tosh has tiniest flash bits

    Toshiba has started mass-producing NAND flash ships using a 24nm process, and is offering the world’s smallest 8GB flash chips.

  • Toshiba recalls 41,000 computers over risk of burns

    Toshiba has announced the voluntary recall of about 41,000 notebook computers worldwide at risk of overheating and burning users.

  • Health/Nutrition

    • Are the days of kidney dialysis numbered?

      There’s no gentle way to put it. Chronic kidney failure is ugly and often deadly, and more people in the States are suffering from it every year, with increasing rates of diabetes and hypertension contributing to the problem.

  • Security/Aggression

    • Scientists Question Safety Of New Airport Scanners

      After the “underwear bomber” incident on Christmas Day, President Obama accelerated the deployment of new airport scanners that look beneath travelers’ clothes to spot any weapons or explosives.

      Fifty-two of these state-of-the-art machines are already scanning passengers at 23 U.S. airports. By the end of 2011, there will be 1,000 machines and two out of every three passengers will be asked to step into one of the new machines for a six-second head-to-toe scan before boarding.

    • Corporate espionage for dummies: HP scanners
    • Hackers blind quantum cryptographers

      Quantum hackers have performed the first ‘invisible’ attack on two commercial quantum cryptographic systems. By using lasers on the systems — which use quantum states of light to encrypt information for transmission — they have fully cracked their encryption keys, yet left no trace of the hack.

    • A Trojan hits Adobe Air Tweetdeck

      HACKERS HAVE UPDATED a Trojan virus that bypasses sandbox insecurity on Adobe Air apps like Tweet Deck.

    • Scam preys on required TweetDeck update
    • Malware Convention — Not a Good Idea

      The conference coordinator Rajshekhar Murthy attempted to put a positive spin on the conference, Krebs reported. “While a conference can be done by inviting the best / well known security experts who can share statistics, slides and ‘analysis’ of malwares, it is not of any benefit to the community today except that of awareness. The need of MalCon conference is [to] bridge that ignored gap between security companies and malcoders. They have to get on a common platform and talk to each other.”

    • Huge spamming botnet injured but still alive

      A botnet responsible for a significant amount of spam has been crippled but may reconstitute itself in a matter of weeks, according to vendor M86 Security.

    • Alleged Ransomware Gang Investigated by Moscow Police

      Russian police are reportedly investigating a criminal gang that installed malicious “ransomware” programs on thousands of PCs and then forced victims to send SMS messages in order to unlock their PCs.

    • Russian cops cuff 10 ransomware Trojan suspects
    • Wikileaks founder blasts reopening of rape probe

      Wikileaks founder Julian Assange has blasted Sweden’s investigation into allegations against him for sexual misconduct after prosecutors reopened a probe into charges he raped a woman last month.

      “It appears to be highly irregular and some kind of legal circus,” Assange told the TV service of newspaper Expressen on Thursday. “Today I also had a case filed against me in the United States on a wholly unrelated manner,” he added without elaborating.

    • Apple Quicktime – Absichtliche Backdoor gefährdet Windows-PCs Apple Quicktime – Intentional Backdoor vulnerable Windows PCs

      Several websites report an apparently intentionally built-in Apple’s Quicktime loophole that a security risk to Windows machine is.
      Laut Webseiten wie Heise oder The Inquirer kennt das ActiveX-Plugin von Quicktime einen von Apple nicht dokumentierten Befehl, der von dem Sicherheitsexperte Ruben Santamarta gefunden wurde. According to websites such as Heise or The Inquirer knows the ActiveX plug-in Quicktime one of Apple undocumented command, the security expert Ruben found was that of Santa Marta. Der Parameter “_Marshaled_pUnk” sorgt dafür, dass über Quicktime andere Programmbibliotheken aufgerufen und deren Funktionen verwendet werden können. The parameter “_Marshaled_pUnk” ensures that called Quicktime on other libraries and their functions can be used.

    • Ex-spook jailed for selling secrets

      Ex-MI6 worker Daniel Houghton has been sentenced to 12 months in prison for unlawfully disclosing top secret material, in breach of the Official Secrets Act.

      Houghton, 25 years old and previously living in Hoxton, London, worked for MI6 for just under two years. He left the organisation with Top Secret files which he then tried to sell to MI5 agents masquerading as agents of a foreign power.

    • German gov pooh-poohs biometric ID card hack

      The biometric ID cards store a scan of a user’s fingerprints along with a six-digit PIN that can be used to digitally sign official forms. Hackers from the Chaos Computer Club, however, were able to use home scanners that work with the cards to extract personal information including a fingerprint scan and the six-digit PIN from RFID the chip embedded in the cards.

    • Fake Antivirus Software Uses Ransom Threats
  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • Oil sands release pollutants, contrary to government study

      The extraction of heavy crude oil from oil sands in Canada is releasing as many as 13 kinds of pollutants into the surrounding air and water, according to a study published in PNAS this week. The independent report directly contradicts the results of the government-administered Regional Aquatic Monitoring Program (RAMP) that claimed neither humans nor the environment were at risk from the oil extraction.

      Oil sands are swaths of ground that are laced with heavy crude oil that can be extracted and refined into fuel. Development of oil sands in Canada has been taking place since 1967, but scientists have long been uncertain of the production’s impact on the environment.

    • The Tokyo Two: Whaling, Activism, and Human Rights

      At the start the media strongly covered the embezzlement scandal, and asked serious questions about the industry for the first time. However, one month after we exposed the large-scale theft of whale meat and embarrassed the authorities, they struck back, and had us arrested, interrogated, detained for 26 days and finally charged with “theft” and “trespass”.

      The media were tipped off about our arrest and the raids of our homes, so when the images of our arrest appeared on national television the embezzlement scandal was dismissed and we were immediately seen as criminals by the public.

    • Crisis Commons, and the Challenges of Distributed Disaster Response

      The World Bank wasn’t the only large group interested in working with crisis hackers. Google, Yahoo! and Microsoft came together to found the Random Hacks of Kindness event, designed to let programmers “hack for humanity” in marathon sessions around the world.

    • Arctic Round-Up: New Sea Routes Opening Up, New Infrastructure Imagined, and Canada’s Taking Action

      Melting and thinning ice in the Arctic has proceeded so rapidly that new sea routes are opening up, infrastructure is being imagined, and countries like Canada are working to assert their sovereignty in the north…

    • The ‘cure’ for nuclear waste is worse than the illness
    • Untangling the ‘Environmentalist’s Paradox’: Is It All About Speed?

      We hear lots of concerned chatter these days – not least, here on this site – about peak oil, peak water, deforestation, resource depletion and the like, but a popular riposte offered by those doubting such concerns is something commonly referred to as the “Environmentalist’s Paradox”.

    • Climate Skeptic – Now with Less Skepticism!: Lomborg Changes Tune

      For those who – like me – missed the news on Monday: the world’s most well known climate change skeptic has done a dramatic about face.

    • How an Arctic oil rush will help suffocate the planet

      We’re not just saying ‘go beyond oil’ because it fits on a banner. We’re urging world governments to get their heads out of their oil wells and recognise that whoever’s oil we are burning we need to start stopping now, because in the end we are all stuck under the one sweater, and its getting really tight.

    • Greenpeace activists occupy Arctic oil rig

      Our activists are suspended 15 meters above the frigid Arctic waters of Baffin Bay. They have taken up position on the drilling rig Stena Don to call for a ban on deep sea oil drilling in the Arctic, and demand that ‘wild cat’ oil company Cairn energy stop drilling, pack up and go home. The banner? “Hands off the Arctic, go beyond oil!”

    • Bosnia probes video of girl tossing puppies into river

      Bosnian police said on Wednesday they were investigating claims by a local animals rights group that a Bosnian girl threw half a dozen puppies into a river in a video that sparked global outrage.

    • Military Study Warns of a Potentially Drastic Oil Crisis

      The issue is so politically explosive that it’s remarkable when an institution like the Bundeswehr, the German military, uses the term “peak oil” at all. But a military study currently circulating on the German blogosphere goes even further.

    • Greenpeace Protests Facebook’s Data Center

      Facebook’s won the support of a lot of people as it builds a data center in Prineville, Oregon; an official Facebook Page is full of positive comments from locals. However, because the facility will primarily be powered by coal, Greenpeace – along with around 500,000 individuals – has sided against it.

  • Finance

    • When IT Fails
    • Lehman Derivatives Records a `Mess,’ Barclays Executive Says

      Barclays Plc had no idea how big Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc.’s futures-and-options trading business was when it considered taking over the defunct bank’s derivatives trades at exchanges in 2008, a Barclays executive said.

      “Lehman’s books were in such a mess that I don’t think they knew where they were,” Elizabeth James, a director of Barclays’s futures business, testified today in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Manhattan. James worked on Barclays’s purchase of Lehman’s brokerage during the 2008 financial crisis.

  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

    • Lower Merion School District ordered to pay plaintiff’s lawyer $260,000

      A federal judge Monday ordered the Lower Merion School District to pay about $260,000 now – and potentially much more later – to the lawyer who brought the lawsuit over the district’s webcam monitoring.

      In a 14-page opinion, Senior U.S. District Judge Jan E. DuBois said Mark S. Haltzman deserved to be paid for work that led to a preliminary injunction against the district in May. And he said Haltzman could submit the rest of his bills when the case ended.

    • Andy Coulson under pressure as furore over phone hacking claims grows

      A few paragraphs, tucked inside a lengthy article on the News of the World phone hacking scandal, are posing a threat to the career of one of David Cameron’s closest advisers. Andy Coulson “actively encouraged” the hacking of phones, his former News of the World colleague Sean Hoare told the magazine.

    • Google Settles Privacy Lawsuit Over Buzz

      Google is spending US$8.5 million to settle a class-action lawsuit filed over the rollout of its Google Buzz social-networking service.

    • Ad watchdog to bite Facebook, Twitter

      The Advertising Standards Authority is to take responsibility for more online content, not just the paid-for advertisements it currently regulates.

      The ASA already covers content like banner adverts, pop-ups and paid-for search terms. From 1 March 2011 the new ASA rules cover content hosted by companies themselves, such as their own websites.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality/DRM

Clip of the Day

Richard Stallman – DRM


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