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11.28.10

IRC Proceedings: November 28th, 2010

Posted in IRC Logs at 8:07 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

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#techrights log

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Enter the IRC channels now

TechBytes Episode 13: Copyfight, Wikileaks, and Other Chat

Posted in TechBytes at 7:29 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

TechBytes

Direct download as Ogg (1:36:33, 29.1 MB) | Direct download as MP3 (44.2 MB)

Summary: First episode in 5 days discusses some offbeat news with emphasis on copyright and law enforcement

TODAY’S show is an unusual one because of the topics we cover. Tim’s site, OpenBytes, has already published some show notes.

RSS 64x64Today’s show ends with Jono Bacon’s music. We hope you will join us for future shows and spread the word if you enjoy this show. Also consider subscribing to the show via the RSS feed. If you have an Identi.ca account, consider subscribing to TechBytes in order to keep up to date.

As embedded (HTML5):

Download:

Ogg Theora
(There is also an MP3 version)

Our past shows:

Show overview Show title Date recorded
Episode 1: Brandon from Fedora TechBytes Episode 1: Apple, Microsoft, Bundling, and Fedora 14 (With Special Guest Brandon Lozza) 1/11/2010
Episode 2: No guests TechBytes Episode 2: Ubuntu’s One Way, Silverlight Goes Dark, and GNU Octave Discovered 7/11/2010
Episode 3: No guests TechBytes Episode 3: Games, Wayland, Xfce, Restrictive Application Stores, and Office Suites 8/11/2010
Episode 4: No guests TechBytes Episode 4: Fedora 14 Impressions, MPAA et al. Payday, and Emma Lee’s Magic 9/11/2010
Episode 5: No guests TechBytes Episode 5: Windows Loses to Linux in Phones, GNU/Linux Desktop Market Share Estimations, and Much More 12/11/2010
Episode 6: No guests TechBytes Episode 6: KINect a Cheapo Gadget, Sharing Perceptually Criminalised, Fedora and Fusion 14 in Review 13/11/2010
Episode 7: No guests TechBytes Episode 7: FUD From The Economist, New Releases, and Linux Eureka Moment at Netflix 14/11/2010
Episode 8: Gordon Sinclair on Linux Mint TechBytes Episode 8: Linux Mint Special With Gordon Sinclair (ThistleWeb) 15/11/2010
Episode 9: Gordon Sinclair returns TechBytes Episode 9: The Potentially Permanent Return of ThistleWeb 17/11/2010
Episode 10: Special show format TechBytes Episode 10: Microsoft FUD and Dirty Tactics Against GNU/Linux 19/11/2010
Episode 11: Part 2 of special show TechBytes Episode 11: Microsoft FUD and Dirty Tactics Against GNU/Linux – Part II 21/11/2010
Episode 12: Novell special TechBytes Episode 12: Novell Sold for Microsoft Gains 23/11/2010

Links 28/11/2010: Pwnage Radio Launched, Fedora 3-14 Benchmarks

Posted in News Roundup at 7:14 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Moving Desktop Windows users to Linux

    This week I’ve had two more colleague that want Linux also. Both with XP. I guess it was because they saw a not experienced user doing so well with Linux. Soon both computer will soon boot Ubuntu instead of XP.

  • It’s not the same hearing a thunder and seeing lightning!

    I wanted to post about that, but I was preparing my yearly report for the Professor Assembly and, therefore, had no time… but it occurred to me that I would use the chance to contribute by showing all professors how a computer running on Linux works. So, although they had a Vista 7 Starter laptop ready for the reports, I asked permission to use my modest netbook running Mandriva.

    All my colleagues displayed their reports using the Vista 7 laptop and one professor suffered the embarrassment of MS PowerPoint 2007 not responding as she expected. I cannot say that was an “atypical behavior”: all of us have seen something like that happen time and again. I felt bad for her due to the fact that she told me that she slept till late because she invested a lot of time to create a beautiful PowerPoint presentation for the occasion.

    When my turn came, I had my netbook ready and woke it up from hibernation (Yes! It DOES work in Mandriva 2010.1), unplugged the VGA cable from the laptop and plugged it to my netbook. As a good OS should behave, Mandriva picked up the signal and let me configure the display in a matter of five seconds. The picking up of the signal made me a little anxious because, prior to the meeting, they had to change the projector because 7 Starter did not let them change the display size of the screen (How about that!) and I had everything ready with the previous device.

  • Audiocasts/Shows

    • Podcast News – Pwnage Radio

      Things to expect on Pwnage Radio

      - Discussion of Free Software and Open Source products of personal interest to me.

      - Discussion of Apple, Steve Jobs, Oracle and Microsoft.

      - Discussion about the Fedora Project and other Fedora related news.

  • Kernel Space

    • Graphics Stack

      • Why More Companies Don’t Contribute To X.Org

        Being brought up from the discussion surrounding the RadeonHD driver being vandalized, which wound up just being a prank by two X.Org developers to torment one of the former RadeonHD developers, was a discussion why more companies don’t contribute back to X.Org. Do companies think the X.Org code is too hard? That it’s not worth the time? Is it all politics?

        Here’s the beginning of this new thread. Reasons expressed by other developers range from Microsoft F.U.D. to vendors just wishing X.Org would go away, provide the vendors with a competitive advantage by not pushing their patches upstream, to their code just being in a poor and unreliable state. There’s also the matter that with the modularized X.Org state, it’s easier to keep and maintain an out-of-tree DDX driver than it is maintaining an out-of-tree kernel driver on Linux.

      • Wayland Now Has A Nested Compositor Back-End

        Wayland has received quite a number of new patches in the past month from a variety of different developers, including the ability to run Wayland off a Linux frame-buffer, but now this weekend it has picked up another interesting feature: the ability to run another Wayland compositor instance within itself. There’s now patches out there for running a nested/session compositor of Wayland on top of an existing Wayland Display Server that in turn is running on a X11/DRM compositor and communicating with the hardware.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC)

      • Konqueror in KDE 4.5: Huge Step Forward
      • 7 KDE Apps to Get After Installing Kubuntu 10.10 Maverick Meerkat

        Clementine – KDE4 port of Amarok 1.4 – full review
        Kubuntu comes with Amarok 2.2.0, but if you’re happier with the look and feel of the older Amarok 1.4, Clementine is the perfect replacement. It offers an interface similar to the one of the KDE3 version of Amarok, and currently it integrates a pretty fair amount of features. Clementine comes with a file browser, radio support, Last.fm song submission, sortable playlists, cover manager, equalizer, cross-fading, tray icon integration, OSD, music library. Considering it isn’t included in the Ubuntu Maverick repositories, here is a tutorial I’ve put up a while ago to install it.

      • KDEMU with Nuno Pinheiro

        This week, on KDE and the Masters of the Universe, The man from the future Nuno Pinheiro.

      • KWin runs on OpenGL ES

        Last weekend I could announce that KWin compiles with OpenGL ES headers. This weekend I was able to proceed even more: I got the first windows composited using OpenGL ES 2.0. Not everything is working and there is still lot’s of work to be done and it has not yet been tried on actual devices (yes you can use OpenGL ES on a desktop), but nevertheless it’s a very important step.

    • GNOME Desktop

      • Universal Subtitles

        I found the coolest tool, Universal Subtitles. With Universal Subtitles you can easily transcribe a talk, add subtitles or captions or translate any video on the web.

        I’ve been trying to transcribe my Would you do it again for free? talk forever and I always give up – I can’t type fast enough to keep up and manually pausing required more hands than I have. Universal Subtitles let me type and automatically paused and let me catch up whenever the video got ahead of me. Then I could go back and edit, adjust the timing, etc. Now I could also go back and translate the subtitles into other languages.

  • Distributions

    • Reviews

      • Arch Linux review

        Yesterday, I upgraded to 2.6.36 and there were two error messages at boot time. One was about tomoyo-init scripts and the other was about HDA-Intel being unknown hardware. The former is harmless and the later was easy to resolve using the wiki. There still remain two things about Arch that annoy me:

        * an okular issue with deja vu files; and
        * false positives with rkhunter.

        Yet again, they are mostly upstream issues. Thus, Arch linux is a nice distribution; but it may not be the best choice for new users.

    • Red Hat Family

      • Fedora

        • The Performance Of Fedora Core 3 Through Fedora 14

          There are a few areas where Fedora 14 is slower than its predecessors are, but overall Fedora 14 is doing better or on par performance-wise to earlier releases.

        • Communities and Support channels

          Recently (as it does from time to time) the question of professionalism and good behavior in Fedora’s support channels has come up again. Personally I spend a lot of time helping out on irc in #fedora, so thats the channel I can most speak about, however, I am also somewhat active on the fedora users list and somewhat rarely look at fedoraforums.

          First a bit of history: I was at Fudcon (version 10 in Boston, 2008). I had been involved with fedora for years at that point, but I hadn’t really ever spent a lot of time in #fedora or working with support channels. In the State of Fedora talk at the end of the day, Paul Frields noted that he had dropped into #fedora and had a very poor experence. People were cursing, being abusive and all around unhelpfull. So, this seemed to me a great chance to step up and help out there. I found that for the past many number of years, the channel had basically 2 active and very overworked operators, and a smaller group of helpers. So, we formed the irc-support-sig, got more operators setup, tried to setup guidelines and encourage people to help. There are some great folks involved, spending a lot of their time and energy helping others now. I would personally say the channel is a great deal better now than it was in the past. Is it perfect? By no means.

        • Scilab in Fedora GNU/Linux
        • My First Major Disappointment in Fedora (Updated)
        • Fedora Wishlist Feature: Old Versions
        • GraphicsMagick-1.3.8: GNU Octave in Fedora and Ubuntu
        • Fedora 14 post-installation setup
        • Fedora 14 is not for Novice

          Fedora is quite popular distro and now I am going to depict experience with Fedora 14. I feel it not for novice user so I provide a easy to use Codec installation for novice user.

    • Debian Family

      • Why isn’t Debian Edu using VLC?

        In the latest issue of Linux Journal, the readers choices were presented, and the winner among the multimedia player were VLC. Personally, I like VLC, and it is my player of choice when I first try to play a video file or stream. Only if VLC fail will I drag out gmplayer to see if it can do better. The reason is mostly the failure model and trust. When VLC fail, it normally pop up a error message reporting the problem. When mplayer fail, it normally segfault or just hangs. The latter failure mode drain my trust in the program.

      • Updated Debian GNU/Linux: 5.0.7 released

        The Debian project is pleased to announce the seventh update of its stable distribution Debian GNU/Linux 5.0 (codename “lenny”). This update mainly adds corrections for security problems to the stable release, along with a few adjustment to serious problems.

        Please note that this update does not constitute a new version of Debian GNU/Linux 5.0 but only updates some of the packages included. There is no need to throw away 5.0 CDs or DVDs but only to update via an up-to-date Debian mirror after an installation, to cause any out of date packages to be updated.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu

        • Ubuntu 11.04 Natty Narwhal Update Finally Sets Unity Default (For Desktop) [Video]

          Unity (which now shows up as a plugin in CompizConfig Settings Manager) has finally been made default in Ubuntu (desktop) 11.04 Natty Narwhal yesterday, as you can see in the Ubuntu meta changelog. That means that if you download the latest Ubuntu 11.04 Natty Narwhal daily build and boot from it, you should get Unity without having to install / enable anything. The same changelog mentions that Screen has been removed from the desktop version.

        • [Full Circle Magazine] Up, up, and away with issue 43!

          We’ve got issue 43 out with more of the great FCM goodness that you’ve come to enjoy. This month, we’ve got stuff like:

          * Command and Conquer.
          * How-To : Program in Python – Part 17, Virtualize Part 6 – Debian & Xen, and Editing Photos With Raw Therapee.
          * Review – Conky & Untangle.
          * Top 5 – Backup Ideas.
          * Readers Survey 2010 Comments & Replies!
          * plus: Interviews, Ubuntu Games, My Opinion, My Story, and much much more!

        • Ubuntu PPA Problem – Reason for Concern?

          With the release of Ubuntu 9.10 late last year Canonical introduced PPAs, which is short for Personal Package Archives. A PPA allows anyone that has signed the Ubuntu Code of Conduct to easily distribute software they have packaged to Ubuntu users. This revolutionary idea allows those who do not have the capability to establish their own repository to easily provide package updates to their users. Want the latest version of Openshot or PiTiVi? Then simply add a PPA to your system that packages up to date versions of these softwares and you will be set to go!

        • Latest Ubuntu “Maverick Meerkat” looks like a winner

          The latest Ubuntu 10.10 operating system, codenamed “Maverick Meerkat” is being touted as an alternaive best-of-breed Linux-based OS for Filipino PC users.

          Rather than just a simple update from Ubuntu 10 (Lucid Lynx), the Ubuntu 10.10 is set as an “evolutionary” step in visuals and system performance benefits, which are seamlessly integrated to ensure maximum productivity for the user.

        • Flavours and Variants

          • Wherein the author foolishly breaks his Mint installation

            Yesterday, fresh from my success at building/installing Firefox 4 Beta 7 on my Ubuntu boxes, I decided to try it on my old laptop. This thing is pretty ancient – a Dell Latitude D610, I’m guessing about six or seven years old. It was running Mint 9, which is basically Ubuntu 10.04 with some slight modifications, so I thought the FF4 build and install process would be pretty much the same as on the two Ubuntu 10.10 machines I’d already installed it on.

Free Software/Open Source

  • Symbian Foundation web sites to shut down

    As a result, we expect our websites will be shutting down on 17th December. We are working hard to make sure that most of the content accessible through web services (such as the source code, kits, wiki, bug database, reference documentation & Symbian Ideas) is available in some form, most likely on a DVD or USB hard drive upon request to the Symbian Foundation. Preparing this content will take some time, hence it will not be distributable before 31st January 2011. A charge may be levied for media and shipping.

  • Recommended reading: Control and Community by The 451 Group

    The 451 Group’s annual report on the state of the open source business world is out. Already the title: Control and Community suggests they are once again on top of what has been going on this year. Analyzing about 300 open source related businesses they not only “get it right”, but were actually able to uncover some facts even I was unaware of and this impressed me a lot. If an analyst can dig up statistics to back up something that I already “intuitively” know in my heart, that is a useful service. But if they can make me go “ah, I didn’t know that” on a topic I consider myself quite an expert in, the I’m impressed!

  • What Apache Wave means and does not mean
  • Events

    • CeBIT – Free Exhibit Space Offered to FOSS projects

      CeBIT, held in Hanover, Germany each year, is the largest IT trade show in the world. Companies come from all over the world to show their goods and services to each other, and to make deals. For several years now Linux New Media, the publishers of various Linux magazines around the world has sponsored a “Linux Park” at CeBIT.

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

    • Secure key exchange for peer-to-peer communication and VoIP

      Now there is one other trick that GNU SIP Witch in particular can do which will make this methodology and both anonymous and verified secure calling over VoIP much more widely available. GNU SIP Witch can choose to act as a media proxy. It can do this by rewriting the SDP to goto SIP Witch managed RTP ports. Doing so, these ports could take in unencrypted RTP streams and encrypt using media cipher keys that GNU SIP Witch computes. This would be done if the calling party or the called party do not already independently support secure calling on their own. This means any existing SIP VoIP application, including SIP phone devices, can suddenly be used to make entire secure calls without any modification. Moreover, SIP Witch can selectively use secure calling depending on if the endpoints are on the same subnet or not, or placed at each workstation as a local proxy and assure all call traffic, including internal traffic is always secure, especially if there is concern with internal espionage. This maximizes the range of secure deployment scenarios and all without requiring the introduction of new secure VoIP user agents.

  • Project Releases

    • PyPy 1.4: Ouroboros in practice

      We’re pleased to announce the 1.4 release of PyPy. This is a major breakthrough in our long journey, as PyPy 1.4 is the first PyPy release that can translate itself faster than CPython. Starting today, we are using PyPy more for our every-day development.

    • Lightspark 0.4.5 With New Graphics Engine Nears

      Lightspark 0.4.5 is nearing release with its new graphics engine. The release candidate for Lightspark 0.4.5 just came this Saturday, boasting this new graphics engine that more heavily leverages Cairo for graphics drawing and offloading more of the workload to the graphics processor for this free software project aiming to implement the latest Adobe Flash/SWF specification. Besides faster and smoother playback (and lower CPU utilization in most cases) with this new graphics engine, this open-source Flash player also now has better input support.

  • Government

    • Interested in open government data in Europe?

      As you may know the OKF is working on an EU funded project called LOD2. Part of the project aims to bring together openly licensed, machine-readable datasets from local, regional and national public bodies throughout Europe. It will also provide free/open source tools and services for those interested in reusing open government data.

    • Open Government Data Goes Global – OGDCamp Keynote

      I’m Rufus Pollock from the Open Knowledge Foundation. We’re delighted to have such great a group of people here and many thanks to all of you that have come, especially if you’ve travelled a long way.

  • Openness/Sharing

Leftovers

  • Tony Blair defends religious faith

    The former prime minister said it was true that “people commit horrific acts of evil in the name of religion”.

    But Mr Blair, who converted to Catholicism after leaving government in 2007, said it was also true that religion inspires acts of extraordinary good.

  • R1 (Final) Features Poll

    This poll will remain open until Sunday December 12, 2010 (approximately 19:00 UTC). Afterwards, the results will be merged onto the FutureHaikuFeatures wiki page on the Haiku Project’s Development Tracker.

  • U.N. Takes Stand Against Freedom of Speech, Religion: This Week in Online Tyranny

    The United Nations has again passed the resolution forbidding “defamation of religion.”

  • Science

    • There’s a Fine Line Between Scientist and Supervillain

      What superpowers have been developed? Full scale war between the developed world and other strong militaries hasn’t happened since World War 2. The only way we would find out what powers have been developed would be by risking nuclear war. So maybe we’ll never know what powers have been developed.

  • Security

    • Twitter hacker spreads Tsunami warning from government advisor’s account

      As many people have found, Twitter is a fantastic tool for spreading important news rapidly.

      In the past it’s been used to share information about fires in Los Angeles, emergency landings in the Hudson River, and most recently helping aid be transported effectively to disaster stricken Indonesians.

  • Defence/Police/Aggression

    • Rob Ford – Show Your Respect For Taxpayers By Firing These Police Officers

      Rob Ford ran a campaign for Mayor of Toronto based on the concept of respect for taxpayers. Now he’s mayor-elect, taking office in December. Is Rob Ford really going to show respect for taxpayers, or was it all a sham just to get elected?

      Now admittedly Rob Ford’s campaign was about financial respect. He has for years complained about city hall wasting taxpayer money. But what use is ‘financial respect’, if he shows no respect for the people themselves?

      Specifically I’m talking about the policing situation during the G8 and G20 meetings which ran from June 25 to June 27, 2010 (further information on the G8 and G20 summits can be found at the G8 Information Center and the G20 Information Center, both of which sites are operated by the University of Toronto, and of course the Wikipedia G8 and G20 pages.).

      During the G8 and G20 meetings, it became apparent that there is a rogue element of the Toronto Police Service. This rogue element took advantage of security concerns to abuse the public that they are sworn ‘To Serve and Protect’ (the Toronto Police Service slogan), and to breach the values exposed in the Toronto Police Service’s Mission Statement. I don’t believe that this rogue element is a large portion of the force. I’ve known too many cops, and the vast majority take their charge seriously. But there are always a few bad apples, and you cannot store rotten apples with good apples, or the rot will spread to the good ones as well.

    • So, when is the U.S. Government going to seize the Google domain?

      One of the most worrisome things is happening on the web right now and with increasing frequency. Domains are being seized by the U.S. Department of Justice and Department of Homeland Security under the auspices of ICE. Not only are they being seized but it is happening without any notification but also apparently with the assistance of ICANN.

    • Police in the UK are seeking authority to close domains

      As first reported by the BBC, The Serious and Organised Crime Agency (SOCA) is seeking the authority to close domains engaged in certain “criminal” activities, which includes not just website domains, but domain registrations such as email, and perhaps phones, too*. The police have submitted a plan to Nominet, a company which oversees all .uk web addresses. And more than a few liberal minds in London, numerous IT lawyers among them, are concerned.

    • Call the TSA’s Office of Strategic Comms when you’re threatened with arrest for airport photography

      Flyingfish knows he’s allowed to photograph TSA checkpoints from public areas in the airport. He knows this because it is the TSA’s publicly stated position.

      But a refused-to-identify-himself TSA agent and a state trooper at Hartford’s Bradley International Airport don’t know this, so they detained Flyingfish, told him he was in big trouble — that he had, in fact, committed a “federal offense.”

    • UK Gov issues DA notices over WikiLeaks bomb

      The UK Government has issued Defence Advisory Notices to editors of UK news outlets in an attempt to hush up the latest bombshell from whistle-blowing web site WikiLeaks.

      DA Notices, the last of which was issued in April 2009 after sensitive defence documents were photographed using a telephoto lens in the hand of Assistant Commissioner Bob Quick as he arrived at No 10 Downing Street for a briefing, are requests not to publish, and therefore not legally enforceable.

      Which means there are no ‘official’ repercussions for ignoring the notices, but they are generally adhered to.

      The news came to light in two Tweets from WikiLeaks one of which said, “UK Government has issued a “D-notice” warning to all UK news editors, asking to be briefed on upcoming WikiLeaks stories.”

    • UK Asks News Outlets Not To Publish WikiLeaks Bombshell, US Prepares For Fallout
    • US contacts Turkey over WikiLeaks files: diplomat

      The United States has been in contact with Turkey over new files to be released on the Internet by WikiLeaks, Turkish officials said Friday, stressing Ankara’s commitment to fighting terrorism.

      According to media reports, the planned release by the whistle-blowing website includes papers suggesting that Turkey helped Al-Qaeda militants in Iraq, and that the United States helped Iraq-based Kurdish rebels fighting Turkey.

    • Bracing for WikiLeaks’ Release of Diplomatic Documents, State Department Warns Allies
    • WikiLeaks release could damage diplomatic relations, former envoy says
    • WikiLeaks could alter way diplomats relay info: Expert
    • Allies braced for WikiLeaks claims

      The US administration and key allies around the world are braced for the release of a vast quantity of sensitive diplomatic files on whistleblower website WikiLeaks.

      In Washington, the State Department denounced the leak of classified material as “irresponsible” and warned that it would place lives at risk.

    • Oregon bomb-plot suspect wanted ‘spectacular show’

      A Somali-born teenager plotted “a spectacular show” of terrorism for months, saying he didn’t mind that children would die if he bombed a crowded Christmas tree-lighting ceremony, according to a law-enforcement official and court documents.

      He never got the chance. Mohamed Osman Mohamud, 19, was arrested Friday in downtown Portland after using a cell phone to try to detonate what he thought were explosives in a van, prosecutors said. It turned out to be a dummy bomb put together by FBI agents.

    • Was This The Original Intent Of Homeland Security?

      I just realized that I may not be as fully informed about the role of Homeland Security as I should be, when this morning I read in a small piece on Neowin about DHS seizing over 70 domains for their proximity to sites known for piracy.

      I did not know this had anything to do with the purview of DHS, as I was under the mistaken impression that the stated purpose of the department was the physical security of persons and property in the United States of America.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

  • Finance

    • Taibbi: How Can We Expect Wall St. Thieves to Stop Stealing Unless We Throw Them in Prison?

      Often, the most provocative ideas arise after swigs of whiskey. This is especially true when a Rolling Stone reporter is around — and, as I recently learned, it’s all but guaranteed when that Rolling Stoner is Matt Taibbi, aka the heir to the magazine’s gonzo throne.

      I had the chance to hang with Taibbi last week after he spoke to a Denver audience about his new book, “Griftopia,” which argues that Wall Street’s bubble-bailout cycle has been one of the greatest — and least prosecuted — crimes in history. His presentation was serendipitously timed, coming the same week as a local Bonfire of the Vanities-esque scandal was underscoring the speculator class’s privilege. In Colorado’s own Bonfire of the Rockies, a local prosecutor had just reduced hit-and-run charges against a fund manager because the prosecutor said a felony would have “serious job implications” for the Sherman McCoy in question.

    • NAB pay bungle hits thousands

      FURIOUS consumers are demanding compensation after a NAB computer bungle delayed millions of wages, pensions, family payments and business transactions across Australia.

      Tens of thousands of anxious people could still be without cash for the weekend because of backlogs from the shambles.

      The IT nightmare left some families destitute, throwing grocery and Christmas shopping, birthday party plans and even holidays into chaos.

    • The Shock Doctrine Push to Gut Social Security and Middle Class
  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • Why Do Americans Keep Getting Suckered By Right-Wing Lies?

      Almost half of the public is either misinformed or subject to unanswered right wing narratives. If I believed that there was a chance of Sharia law being imposed in the United States I too would be gravely concerned. If I believed that most Europeans and Canadians had inferior health care to that of average Americans, I too would be against health care reform. If I believed that man-made global warning did not exist or that there were nothing we could do about it and that environmental efforts were responsible for unemployment I’d be against cap and trade. If I believed that prisoner abuse would make my family significantly less likely to be killed by terrorists, my thinking about torture would be different. And if I believed that the problems with the economy had been caused by too much government instead of too little, that my personal freedom was threatened by the government instead of large corporations, I’d probably be in a tea party supporter and a Republican.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality/DRM

    • OpenDNS: We’re Being Blocked By Verizon Wireless

      OpenDNS was founded in 2006 and quickly made a lot of fans around here due to their fast, reliable DNS servers and DNS services. It has been a profitable business; in 2008 it was estimated that OpenDNS generates a whopping $20,000 per day off of their DNS redirection relationship with Yahoo. Every DNS outage over the last four years effectively acted as an advertisement for OpenDNS, and the company has grown substantially — now serving roughly 20 million users.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • YouTube to pay royalties to filmmakers in France

        YouTube will begin paying French artists when their works show up on the site, thanks to a new deal with three French royalty societies. The agreement only affects videos viewed in France, Belgium, and Luxembourg, but it does cover clips and movies uploaded to YouTube from 2007 all the way through 2013.

      • High Court ruling implies headlines are copyright – we’re one step away from links

        The UK’s High Court has ruled that news monitoring agencies will have to pay publishing companies to use their web content, effectively re-classifying headlines as separate literary works subject to copyright.

        The moves follows a legal battle between the Newspaper Licensing Agency, owned by eight of the UK’s largest newspaper groups, and Meltwater, a news monitoring agency. Although cutting agencies like Meltwater pay the NLA a fee for reproducing full-length articles, this case was supposed to clarify the limits of the NLA’s licensing scheme.

      • Indexing and hyperlinks infringe copyright

        The High Court of England and Wales has decided on an interesting test copyright case regarding linking and news aggregation by public relations firms. The case is that of Newspaper Licensing Agency Ltd v Meltwater Holding BV [2010] EWHC 3099 (Ch). The claimants in the case are the Newspaper Licensing Agency (NLA), an industry association for several newspapers in the UK, and several other individual newspapers. The defendants are Dutch PR firm Meltwater, and the Public Relations Consultants Association (PRCA), the industry body for PR consultants in the UK.

Clip of the Day

Duke Nukem 3D for the Nokia N900


Credit: TinyOgg

James Love Shows That Gates Foundation is About Marketing and News Distortion for Bill’s Agenda

Posted in Bill Gates, Deception, Marketing, Microsoft at 1:46 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“In the fall of 1982, Pam Edstrom [of Waggener Edstrom], a diminutive woman with piercing blue eyes, was recruited by Microsoft. [...] In modern-day business, flacks were responsible not only for avoiding bad press, but for spinning the good. [...] Hanson and Edstrom would spin a whole new image for Gates himself. They would tap the best and worst of Chairman Bill, changing his clothes, his voice, and his allegiances, driving him to become not just the boss, but, essentially, the company mascot—a sort of high-technology Colonel Sanders.”Pam Edstrom’s daughter

James Love
Photo by Suvi Korhonen from Helsinki, Finland

Summary: A roundup of so-called ‘donations’ that Bill Gates made to news publications so that they put his work in a positive light and help his investments

TECHRIGHTS has not covered the Gates Foundation in about a month. It is very time consuming and we’ll make up for the missing news later in the year.

Over the past year or so we have given countless examples where Gates literally buys coverage. He pays journalists to cover what he says they should cover and the way they should cover it (nobody reasonable would bite the hand that feeds without getting fired by the editor or without losing the income). James Love has written an excellent timeline which he sums up with the summary: “In 2009, the Gates Foundation spent $1 million per day on “Policy and Advocacy”"

“In 2009, the Gates Foundation spent $1 million per day on “Policy and Advocacy””
      –James Love
That’s right. As we’ve said dozens of times alongside new examples, there is a great deal of advertising with a budget of over $300,000,000 per year. It’s just advertising the “Bill Gates” brand, Nathan Myhrvold’s patents, and some of the Gates Foundation’s tax-exempt investments that harm society. Apart from that, Gates makes many promises and pledges while actually increasing his wealth and giving relatively small sums of money (compared to promises he keeps re-announcing for publicity). The whole thing sometimes seems like PR operations that also help Microsoft. And yes, the press says the Gates Foundation helps Microsoft increase sales.

This charlatan Mr. Gates, who we no longer have the time to cover like we used to, shows quite clearly that money buys image. He can break as many laws as he wants, but as long as he is a celebrity who pays for the news, he just won’t be arrested. The man corrupts the media, especially in recent years. Turning the media into one’s ego-boosting machine is unacceptable and very dangerous (e.g. taking control of schools, derailing national migrations to Free software, and so on). Anyway, take a look at Love’s summary, which starts more gently:

This draft timeline, which is an incomplete work in progress, contains a number of selected data points concerning Microsoft and the Gates Foundation. Timelines are always somewhat arbitrary in terms of the selection of items, and this is the case here.

[...]

March 9, 1998. Ralph Nader and CPTech ask six PC makers (Dell, Gateway, Micron, Compaq, HP and Packard Bell-NEC) to offer consumers the opportunity to buy computers with non-Microsoft operating systems pre installed, including the free software operating system Linux.

[...]

February 2000. The Gates Foundation gives the first of several grants to National Public Radio, to cover global health issues.

[...]

October 2, 2000. Microsoft makes $135 million investment in Corel. Corel shuts down its Linux products.

[...]

2004

March 24, 2004: The European Commission finds Microsoft guilty of violating EU competition laws and of abusing its market position and imposes a 497- million-Euro (USD 689 million) fine.

July 2004. The Gates Foundation announced a $150,000 grant to the National Press Foundation “to help create a cadre of skilled writers, editors and producers from nations heavily impacted by HIV/AIDS.”

August 2, 2004. The International Reporting Project (IRP) at The Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) announced it received a $300,000 grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to provide training and fellowships to U.S. journalists covering global health issues. The IRP would received several more.

September 10, 2004. Melinda Gates joins the board of directors of the Washington Post.

September 16, 2004. Public Radio International awarded a “major” grant by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. PRI also discloses frunding from Merck.

2005

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation provide a three-year grant to Harvard to create the Nieman Global Health Reporting Fellowship program.

October 2005. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation provides a $300,000 grant to the Internews Network “to increase frequency and improve the quality of health journalism in developing countries through the Health Journalism Project”

2006

On June 25, 2006, Warren Buffett announced a pledge to give the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation 10 million Berkshire Hathaway shares.

July 12, 2006: The European Commission fines Microsoft 280.5 million Euros fine for failing to comply with a 2004 competition order.

Microsoft launches the Zune.

Now, watch what happened in more recent years (which is when we started to smell rogue activity and covered it more frequently):

2007

During negotiations on the World Health Organization (WHO)’s Global Strategy and Plan of Action for Public Health, Innovation and Intellectual Property, the WHO Secretariat gives both the Gates Foundation and Microsoft Corporation permission to attend non-public drafting sessions.

October 2007. The International Center for Journalists receives a $3.7 million grant “to develop high-impact fellowships in Africa focusing on health issues”

October 10, 2007. The International Reporting Project (IRP) at The Johns Hopkins University Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) announced a five-year, $1.6 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to provide fellowships to U.S. editors to improve the news media’s coverage of global health and development issues.

December 12, 2007. The Gates Foundation announces a three-year, $5 million grant to Public Radio International (PRI), to report on “global health and development content.”

2008

October 21, 2008. Transparency International Awarded $6.9 Million Grant from Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation for its work “to promote government transparency and accountability in sub-Saharan Africa.”

October 2008. The Gates Foundation gives $3.6 million to the NewsHour program to cover global health issues. (Commentary here)

November 2008 The International Center for Journalists receives a $2 million grant “to improve media coverage of development issues in four African countries in order to foster decisions that benefit the poor with special focus on rural development issues, including both agriculture and financial services for the poor.”

2009

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation report grants of $3.055 billion in 2009, plus expenditures on operating expenses of $409 million. The grants were broken down into $1.8 billion for global health, $677 million for global development, and $489 for the United States. Grants identified as “Policy and Advocacy” totalled $365 million for all areas, or $1 million per day.

February 25, 2009. President Obama announced the appointment of Gary Locke, the former Governor of the State of Washington, as the Secretary of Commerce. When appointed, Locke was partner at Davis Wright Tremaine LLP, and had been a consultant to Microsoft.

March 2009. The Gates Foundation announced a $767,800 grant to the Regents of the University of California at Berkeley “to foster in-depth and high quality media coverage of agricultural development issues in Africa through an intensive journalism training program”

March 4, 2009. Kathleen Sebelius, Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), announced that Dr. Nils Daulaire, the former president and CEO of the Global Health Council (1998-2009), will join HHS as Director of the Office of Global Health Affairs on March 22. While at the Global Health Council, Nils had established the annual $1 million Gates Award for Global Health. Among the leading funders of the Global Health Council were the Gates Foundation and the Merck Foundation. Daulaire has been replaced at the Global Health Council by Jeffrey L. Sturchio, who earlier held several different positions at Merck dealing with public and external affairs.

November 2009. The Gates Foundation announces a $750,000 grant to National Public Radio “to support coverage of education issues on NPR programs, including the “Morning Edition” and “All Things Considered.”

2010

Through its seat of the UNITAID board of directors, the Gates Foundation nominated a Microsoft patent lawyer to the founding board of the UNITAID medicines patent pool. The UNITAID board deferred action on all nominations.

August 2010, Gates and Buffett announce “the giving pledge.”

September 14, 2010. The Guardian announced the launch of global development website with Gates Foundation funding.

September 2010. Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) receives $367,941 to “support a reporting fellowship to influential journalists in the U.S. media to cover global health stories in different countries around the world.”

October 6, 2010. ABC news announces the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will provide a $1.5 million grant to fund overseas travel and foreign production costs for its reporting on global health.

November 2010. Melinda Gates resigns from the board of directors of the Washington Post. Warren Buffett remains on the board of the Directors of the Washington Post, a position he has held since 1974.

A lot of the unethical activities (almost all of them) are ommitted from Love’s list, which seemingly concentrates on Gates’ influence on the media. There is a meme spreading around the Web which goes along the lines of quoting Gates as saying: “if I only had two cents left, I would spend one on advertising.” It’s not a real quote (some think that it is), but it generally shows Gates’ strategy and motto. In antitrust memos too we see Gates advocating “evangelization” rather than better products. Oh, and by the way, the quote below is real.

“If you can’t make it good, at least make it look good.”

Bill Gates, Microsoft

FOSDEM 2011 Infiltrated by Microsoft

Posted in Europe, Finance, Free/Libre Software, Microsoft at 1:13 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“I’ve killed at least two Mac conferences. [...] by injecting Microsoft content into the conference, the conference got shut down. The guy who ran it said, why am I doing this?”

Microsoft's chief evangelist

Summary: Microsoft is trying to “kill” yet another event of its competitors by repelling attendees and changing the agenda in exchange for money

For those who want a recent example of Microsoft poisoning a GNU/Linux event, look no further than LinuxTag 2010 [1, 2] and read the quote at the top.

Microsoft money for FOSDEM is more ‘tainted’ than FOSDEM money from Novell, which sold out to Microsoft more than once. Mono will have a room in next FOSDEM too.

Mark Antony writes that “Microsoft’s open source project website CodePlex.com sponsors FOSDEM2011“. CodePlex.com is just a Microsoft proxy and a way to pretend that it’s not really Microsoft. There is a price to pay for this so-called ‘sponsorship’ and FOSDEM organisers are repeating an old mistake.

“Microsoft essentially bought Novell, which over the past few years put Microsoft-affiliated people inside its board.”How nice of them to invite the company which is suing Linux multiple times and lobbying in Europe for laws which exclude and thus work against Free software. Such a sponsorship, argues Dr. Stallman, does not come with strings unattached to it. “The price might be, let someone from Microsoft give a speech,” Stallman wrote. “The price might be, don’t say that proprietary software is evil. The price might be, present Microsoft sponsorship in a way that inhibits you from denouncing Microsoft’s software as unethical.”

Rui Seabra, who previously wrote an open letter about FOSDEM 2009 when Novell did this sponsorship routine, is writing about the above revelation: “Well, at least now I’m no longer sad I’ll have to skip fosdem in 2011″

In other disconcerting news, “Jim Totton [is] former Microsoft executive who joined Red Hat as vice president of the platform business unit” (hello entryism).

Readers should expect a lot of Novell coverage in days to come. We have researched the matter more profoundly and are ready to report with the findings. The short story, as SJVN put it, is that Microsoft essentially bought Novell, which over the past few years put Microsoft-affiliated people inside its board.

IRC Proceedings: November 27th, 2010

Posted in IRC Logs at 1:12 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME Gedit

GNOME Gedit

GNOME Gedit

#techrights log

#boycottnovell log

#boycottnovell-social log

Enter the IRC channels now

Groklaw: Florian Müller “Sigue Presionando por Microsoft y las Patentes de Software.”

Posted in Deception, Europe, Microsoft, Patents at 1:02 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Spain on EU map

(ODF | PDF | English/original)

Resumen: La inmensa máquina de propaganda que trata de envenenar la defensa contra todas las patentes de software está siendo destacada por Groklaw

M ICROSOFT mobbyist Florian Müller[http://techrights.org/wiki/index.php/Florian_M%C3%BCller] sigue en llamas y difama a Groklaw (llamandola “Groklie”), a continuación, sigue quejándose de “censura” y soplar a los llamados “periodistas” a quienes sigue charlando[http://techrights.org/2009/02/13/steve-ballmer-eu-visits/] y/o ‘spamming’ en masa. Microsoft Müller ha estado utilizando estas tácticas durante mucho tiempo para echar barro en casi todos las entidad que promueven GNU/Linux y software libre (tanto los moderados y los de más principios). El mobbyist, Müller, que ya hace girar la venta de Novell en favor de Microsoft[http://www.groklaw.net/article.php?story=20101118013355936] y al mismo tiempo Groklaw cubre el caso de Oracle Java en contra de Android[http://www.groklaw.net/article.php?story=20101118013355936], los defensores mobbyist .NET / Mono, que es lo que él también lo hace para ganarse la vida (cuando no está haciendo campaña por el dinero, es decir, grupos de presión ). Es decir un verdadero mercenario del siglo XXI.

“Veo que Florian sigue promoviendo Microsoft y las patentes”, escribió Pamela Jones, editor de Groklaw, en respuesta a una pieza de The Guardian. Para los que no lo saben todavía, Müller envía correo masivo a periodistas para ‘inyectar’ su veneno (que se explica esto con más detalles antes y dio muchos ejemplos), así que a veces es posible que uno entre muchos se deslize una cita o un punto de hablar enviado por Müller sin una solicitud real. Müller también envía comentarios duplicados hacia muchos sitios. Este tipo es un empedernido promotor [alias MERCENARIO], al igual que muchos otros grupos de presión. Más recientemente, difundió rumores sobre la CND de Red Hat con Acacia[http://techrights.org/2010/11/16/perens-on-acacia-settlement/], por lo que Bruce Perens los criticó. Simon Phipps muy criticado por ello[http://blogs.computerworlduk.com/simon-says/2010/11/private-agreements-harm-communities/index.htm] y que cosas como esta que el mobbyists tomar fuera de contexto y falsea para embarrar a Red Hat:

“Comunidades dependen de la transparencia y la igualdad. Cualquier cosa que cause miembros de la comunidad a participar en las acciones relacionadas con la comunidad que son de carácter bilateral será probablemente un problema. Por ello, algunos ejemplos:

* La implementación de un estándar que está cubierta por las patentes puede significar que algunos participantes de la comunidad están obligados por los términos de las licencias de esas patentes. Bruce Perens especula que este es el caso de Red Hat y JBoss, por ejemplo. Perens comentarios:

Pero es importante tener en cuenta que Red Hat, como parte demandada, habría tenido que estar de acuerdo para sellar este caso, sabiendo sus socios jurídica en el desarrollo de JBoss, la comunidad de código abierto, sería guardado para siempre en la oscuridad acerca de si sus propias licencias se siendo violados.”

Red Hat la embarro, en este caso, pero no debemos dejar que los mobbyists caraduras de Microsoft nos vuelven uno contra el otro. Eso es lo ellos que esperan lograr.


Eduardo Landaveri adds (in English):

Let us keep on unmasking these reactionary mercenaries enemies of freedom & people’s sovereignty.

This mercenary pharisee talks about that “communities depend on transparency and equality” what transparency & equality he’s talking about when he doesn’t want to reveal WHO is paying him. This is HYPOCRISY & CYNICISM with capitals.

I wish I could double myself to help more somehow, that’s why I devoted myself to translate regarding the fight against software patents for the importance they have on the future generations. I know there are other fronts & I hope others will stand up on line for the job.

“The best regional defense against software patents is the COMPLETE rejection of software patents”

Or in Spanish:

Tenemos que desenmascarar a estos reaccionarios mercenarios enemigos de la libertad y la soberanía y los pueblos.

Este fariseo mercenario habla sobre que “las comunidades dependen de la transparencia y la igualdad”, de que transparencia y la igualdad y que está hablando cuando no quiere revelar quién le paga. Esto es HIPOCRECIA y CINISMO con mayúsculas.

Deseo poder duplicarse a mí mismo para ayudar a más de alguna manera, es por eso que me dediqué a traducir en materia de lucha contra las patentes de software por la importancia que tienen en las generaciones futuras. Sé que hay otros frentes & & espero que otros se pondrán de pie en la línea para el trabajo.

“La mejor defensa regional contra las patentes de software es el rechazo TOTAL de las patentes de software”

Thanks to Eduardo for his translations.

Microsoft’s Vista Phony 7 Jailbroken, Developer Upset

Posted in Microsoft at 12:49 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

3000 year-old castle

Summary: Another case of Vista Phony 7 [sic] failure and why the lack of applications for the platform is a permanent condition

IT HAS PROVEN hard to sell Vista Phony 7 [sic], which is well behind the competition and has serious security problems. It does not even run many applications because developers realise that developing for it (even with Microsoft incentives) is a total waste of time.

FurnaceBoy says that an “App developer finds out that Windows Mobile can be jailbroken, throws a fit”:

Today (well, yesterday now) was Thanksgiving here in the U.S. In addition to doing my traditional family things (making and eating a large, Turkey-centered dinner), I found some time to pop on to the computer. To my dismay I saw that the #WP7 hashtag on Twitter was filled with news of a program/project called “ChevronWP7” (which presumably has no connection to the U.S. petroleum products company, Chevron Corp. – which has a market cap of $166 billion dollars and whose trademark lawyers may well decide to bury the people behind “ChevronWP7” in lawsuits, something I’d personally be delighted to hear).

“ChevronWP7” is a “jail-breaking” thing (it apparently involves running some code and possibly visiting a website, mucking in your registry and I don’t even know what else… hence calling it a “thing”). The developers of it protest that their motives are noble and have put up a webpage condemning anyone pirating apps and claiming that it can’t be used to pirate anything anyway. They note that they, too, are app developers and just want to help people load things onto their phones that would never pass marketplace certification and are just exploring the hardware blah blah… .

Claudio notes: “The comments are littered with MS astroturfers. Quite funny reading their comments.” Well, that’s what marketing budgets of around half a billion dollars can achieve.

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