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01.04.11

Links 4/1/2011: Linux is Everywhere, GNU/Linux to be Sold in Walmart

Posted in News Roundup at 5:27 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Linux everywhere

    2010 was the year in which Linux took over. Not that many people will have noticed.

  • GNU/Linux Returns to Walmart

    Walmart lost interest in GNU/Linux on netbooks for some reason but welcomes it again on tablets.

  • Linux: CrunchBang Linux 10 on a MacBook Pro

    I tried CrunchBang Linux 10 on a MacBook Pro. Previously, I had a lot of trouble dual booting with OS X, so I did the same thing I did for Ubuntu–I told it to use the entire disk. This turned out to be a big mistake.

    I put GRUB on the MBR since I wasn’t dual booting. I also set up an encrypted LVM. The system wouldn’t boot. I just got a flashing folder with a “?” icon. I think this is a known problem with Debian right now.

  • How your secure your Linux system

    There is no golden rule for security that applies in every single case, and even if there were it would have been cracked already. Security is something that needs to be worked upon, and personalised. Follow the tips and tools in this tutorial as we show you how to adapt them to your very own Linux installation.

  • Desktop

    • Happy New Year & Browser and OS stats for 2010

      Browsers
      Firefox 57.11%
      Chrome 16.44%
      Internet Explorer 16.40%
      Safari 3.43%
      Opera 3.25%
      Mozilla 2.21%
      Konqueror .47%

      Firefox is now on a multi-year slide while Chrome has passed IE to move into the number two position. Safari made some significant gains while Konqueror use was cut in half.
      Operating Systems
      Windows 51.71%
      Linux 41.33%
      Macintosh 5.78%
      iPhone .21%
      Android .15%

    • A tip for software companies.

      It amazes me that so many times people who are in charge of large and small software companies make dumb decisions. They get nice salaries but often make decisions that come back and bite them later on. One good strategy for any large or small company that is lagging behind on the Windows or Mac OS market is to create software for GNU/Linux.

  • Server

  • Ballnux

    • Samsung Galaxy Player up for pre-order at Amazon UK, £150 buys 8GB worth of Android Market apps

      We Americans may not see it until summer, but Samsung’s 3.2-inch Galaxy Player is about to call Europe home, as following French presales the PMP has now appeared at Amazon UK. There, it’s sporting a tentative January 7th release date and a pair of capacities and prices, with a modest £150 (about $234) nabbing you 8GB of storage and £180 (roughly $280) fully doubling that capacity to 16GB.

    • Peerless Finds Linux

      Companies rely on technology for marketing, human resources, supply chain and numerous other applications, and as a rule, executives understand the tasks these singular tools execute and comprehend their cost-cutting benefits.

  • Kernel Space

    • Graphics Stack

      • VIA Launches A Graphics Card. Will It Work With Linux?

        Linux is not mentioned once in the press release. At least its better than their S3 Graphics side talking about magical Linux drivers in their press releases.

      • The Challenge In Delivering Open-Source GPU Drivers

        In order to see same-day support “out of the box” for Sandy Bridge graphics, in the case of Ubuntu 10.10 the Intel developers would have had to mainly meet the Linux 2.6.35 kernel and Mesa 7.9 releases of months ago. The final Sandy Bridge bits would have had to be done over six months ago when the 2.6.35 merge window was open and Mesa 7.9 was released this September. The 2.6.35 kernel merge window, which is what’s used by Ubuntu Maverick, opened in early May and per the Linux kernel development process, only bug-fixes would have been allowed after that window closed. While the Linux kernel release schedule is predictable for the most part, the Mesa updates come every quarter too and are generally released by Intel’s own Ian Romanick. Even if Ubuntu 10.10 shipped with “out of the box” OpenGL acceleration support for these new Intel processors, the code would have still been months out of date. There certainly would have been new features and bug-fixes the users would have wanted, like the VA-API Sandy Bridge support not going into libva until early December and the many Mesa Sandy Bridge fixes since then.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • GNOME Desktop

      • Multiple backends for GTK+

        I have to blog about this before the other Kristian finds out and beats me to it. Kris wrote about the new GDK backend work that Alex Larsson started and Benjamin Otte and Matthias Clasen finished. The backend work lets us compile several GDK backends into GTK+ at the same time. Over the holidays I was able to dust off my Wayland backend work for GTK+ and bring it up to date with all the cleanup that’s been going on and make it work with the multi-backend stuff.

  • Distributions

    • New Releases

    • Red Hat Family

      • Is Red Hat Ready to Rebound?

        Linux provider Red Hat has taken a beating of late, as investors sold their shares following a sizable run in the stock. But with the stock up 2 percent on Monday, can investors assume the declines are finished?

      • Red Hat Inc. (RHT) EVP, CFO Charles E Jr Peters sells 22,364 Shares
      • Cramer’s Mad Money – The Top Dow Stock for 2011 (1/3/11)
      • Suit of Red Hat ex-CEO is referred for mediation

        The $60 million lawsuit filed by the former chairman and CEO of Red Hat against his family’s former financial advisers has been referred to mediation.

        The referral by the federal court in Raleigh means that the next stage in the lawsuit filed by Matthew Szulik and members of his family, which accuses an investment management firm of losing $60 million of their money through improper investments and fraud, will be conducted behind closed doors.

      • FSMLabs TimeKeeper Supports Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6 for High-Precision Time Synchronization

        Support of Leading Linux Platform Enables Refined Market Response and Venue Arbitrage Through Precision Time Data Delivered to Trading Apps

      • Press Release: Linux RedHat Advanced Adapter is Now Being Released by IdentityForge

        In their latest venture into server based OS adapters IdentityForge announced today that they now support Linux RedHat OS. IdentityForge is the leader in standard access integration into many different target systems, including ERP, OS, Mainframe, and application security managers.

      • Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6 review

        A sensible new release of the Red Hat Enterprise Linux platform that, with enhanced hardware scalability plus support for the latest RAS technologies, should enable it to maintain its position at the top of the corporate Linux tree.

        It’s not cutting edge and there are no big surprises, but then that’s what the enterprise Linux market demands, the only worrisome note being the move to KVM rather than Xen virtualisation.

        Pros: Scalability to 4,096 cores/threads and 64TB of memory; default EXT4 file system; integrated KVM virtualisation; SELinux sandboxing of VMs; new range of subscription-based add-ons

        Cons: EXT4 limited to 16TB; move to KVM virtualisation may deter some customers from upgrading

      • Fedora

        • Fedora: How many Fedora-based distros are there?

          I noticed the creation of a new Fedora mailing list today when Rahul Sundaram sent out the first post on it… a mailing list for Fedora Remixers.

          That made me wonder just how many Linux distributions there are that are Fedora-based. I did a quick search and found a Fedora wiki page that says, “There are roughly over a hundred distributions based on Fedora.” Then it links to a distrowatch.com search page that shows 41 distributions that are “Fedora based”.

        • Download every default Ubuntu and Fedora wallpaper in one pack

          Well it’s now been updated to include the latest Fedora 14 drapes and the Maverick murals.

    • Debian Family

      • 16 Debian contributors that you can thank

        I put 5 EUR in Flattr each month and I like to spend those among other Debian contributors. That’s why I keep a list of Debian people that I have seen on Flattr (for most of them I noticed through an article on Planet Debian).

      • How to install build-essential in Debian
      • Canonical/Ubuntu

        • Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter Issue 218

          In This Issue

          * Announcing the next Ubuntu User Days Event
          * Results from the December 17th Americas Membership Board meeting
          * Results from the December Asia-Oceania Membership Board meeting
          * Welcome new Edubuntu members and an Edubuntu Developer
          * Announcing Ubuntu IRC Membership
          * Natty Alpha 1 Released
          * Ubuntu Stats
          * LoCo News
          * Launchpad News
          * Caching Ubuntu Package Downloads
          * Sound Indicator news and updates
          * Natty Translations Plans I-III
          * Ubuntu Screencasts: How To Sign the Ubuntu Code of Conduct
          * Working together to get Unity ready for Natty
          * Project Unity L10N
          * Unity Bitesize Progress Report for 20 December
          * Checking in with the Artwork Team
          * No More PS3 CD Builds for Natty
          * Paul Tagliamonte’s “Myth Busted” Series
          * Ubuntu Translations Interviews: André Gondim (Brazilian Portuguese Translation Team)
          * AskUbuntu reaches 5000 questions – 11000 answers – 7000 users – 50000 votes
          * Ubuntu Cloud Screencasts
          * Design Museum exhibition London
          * Full Circle Magazine – Issue #44
          * Full Circle Magazine – Issue #43
          * Featured Podcasts
          * Weekly Ubuntu Development Team Meetings
          * Monthly Team Reports: October 2010
          * Monthly Team Reports: November 2010
          * Upcoming Meetings and Events
          * Updates and Security for 6.06, 8.04, 9.10, 10.04 and 10.10 in December
          * And Much Much More

        • LibreOffice Is the Default Office Suite for Ubuntu 11.04

          Matthias Klose announced yesterday, January 3rd, some details regarding the replacement of the old OpenOffice.org 3.2.1 packages with the new LibreOffice 3.3 ones, starting with the upcoming Ubuntu 11.04 (Natty Narwhal) Alpha 2 release.

        • Ubuntu Unleashed 2011 Edition

          I am the sole editor and contributor of new content for the just-released Ubuntu Unleashed 2011 Edition. This book is intended for intermediate to advanced users.

  • Devices/Embedded

Free Software/Open Source

  • Conservancy Activity Summary, October-December 2010

    I had hoped to blog more regularly about my work at Conservancy, and hopefully I’ll do better in the coming year. But now seems a good time to summarize what has happened with Conservancy since I started my full-time volunteer stint as Executive Director from 2010-10-01 until 2010-12-31.

  • Why I am still supporting Free Software?

    Today I no longer do programming, except for a few improvements at getdeb and some scripting at my job when I look at code this days is mostly to identify a problem or feature. For me the (open source) code has lost the magic it had a few years ago. Thankfully to my loved wife, daughter and friends I no longer have the required free time or desire to learn/work on what is required to fix bugs or develop new features. I have lost most of the capacity to use one Free Software’s fundamental freedoms “The freedom to study how the program works, and change it to make it do what you wish (freedom 1)” , I can still do many things with the code, but no longer the ones I wish.

    Why am I still here, an Ubuntu member, supporting Free Software yet economically dependent on and surrounded by commercial/closed source software?

    I have assimilated the values of the Free Software -without the radicalism of some of it’s activists-.
    I believe that the ability to keep and expand such freedom is still more important than to use it.

  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • Firefox, Linux and the future of the web

        Tristan Nitot started working for Netscape in 1997, and was one of the first volunteers to work on the Mozilla project that rose out of Netscape’s ashes.

        He started Mozilla Europe (he’s now president of that organisation) and has seen the birth, growth and worldwide success of Firefox from the inside – so who better to ask about the future of the project, how its guiding philosophy chimes with that of Linux and why the folks at Mozilla welcome the competition from Google’s mighty Chrome.

  • Oracle

    • A Year After: The People

      It’s been (almost) a year since Oracle’s Acquisition of Sun. Some of the ex-Sun folks stayed at Oracle but others moved to other companies, small and large, public, private or still in stealth mode. This Diaspora will contribute talent, expertise and experience to many companies, and, I hope, also some of the culture at Sun that I’ve enjoyed for so many years.

    • Despite anti-Oracle hysteria, firm is an Open Source powerhouse

      Oracle bought Sun Microsystems, one of the IT industry´s most hard-working firms in the fight for open standards and against the Redmond juggernaut, the Evil Empire of Redmondia. Sun was also one of the most unrecognised firms by FOSS pundits, despite its vast contributions to the open source movement, be it in the form of developers on Sun´s payroll collaborating with FOSS projects -from Gnome to MySQL to OpenOffice.org to you-name-it, and also when taking into account the hundreds of thousands of lines of proprietary code turned to open source.

  • BSD

    • Learning About NetBSD 5.1

      The NetBSD project isn’t one which I’ve given much thought to over the years. Its reputation of being able to run on just about any architecture is something I consider amazing, but not specifically useful for my purposes. The project’s famed flexibility, when placed against the backdrop of the rest of the open source community, brings to mind a contortionist in a room full of gymnasts: impressive, but not so much as to stand out from the crowd. Perhaps that’s unfair, I am very much an outsider where NetBSD is concerned. Aside from my pleasant brush with Jibbed last year, I’ve never taken the time to properly investigate the project.

  • Project Releases

    • OCRFeeder 0.7.3 released

      I’ve just released OCRFeeder 0.7.3.

      This first version of 2011 doesn’t introduce as many features as the previous ones but fixes a few issues and introduces user documentation (F1 help).

    • HandBrake 0.9.5 Has Been Released (Ubuntu Installation Instructions)

      Handbrake is a multithreaded video transcoder that supports any DVD-like source and most multimedia file it can get libavformat to read and libavcodec to decode.

      Even though it’s not its first aim, Handbrake is used by many as a DVD ripper and it was voted as “best Linux DVD ripper” by the WebUpd8 readers.

    • Muon Suite 1.1 RC

      The release candidate of the Muon package management suite 1.1 is now available. As with beta 2, the main focus for the release candidate milestone was to iron out issues to make sure the 1.1.0 release rocks. (Expect 1.1.0 to be released in around 2 weeks) Packages are available for the development version of Kubuntu 11.04 as well as for Kubuntu 10.10 via the QApt PPA as usual. Packages of interest are the muon and muon-installer packages.

  • Government

    • Code for America: A New Kind of Public Service

      Government can be seen as an answer to the often messy question of collective action. There are some things people need together, but since that’s not easy to coordinate, we set up institutions to do so. Over time, the government’s focus and expectations developed — understandably — to a place where it was seen less as a coordinator and more as a service provider. This is what some call the vending machine model of government. My tax dollars in, a safe and well-kept community out.

      But, as we’re all seeing now, that machine is profoundly broken. Buckling under the weight of the budget crisis and burdened with ever-increasing demands from its citizens, governments are unable to provide those services we’ve come to expect. The federal debt is in the trillions, many cities and states are nearing bankruptcy, and some already have. And so this analogy needs to change. Government can’t be a vending machine any longer; it must be a building block, something we use together to create the communities we hope to live in.

  • Licensing

    • The Unlicense: The First Year in Review

      It’s Public Domain Day again, and it’s now been exactly a year since I first introduced the Unlicense.org initiative: an easy-to-use template and process intended to help coders waive their copyright and dedicate all their code to the public domain with no strings attached. It seems a good time for a brief recap of the happenings on this front over the last 365 days.

  • Openness/Sharing

    • Public Domain Day 2011

      It’s January 1st, 2011, New Year’s Day and, for millions of “works” in the copyright law sense of the term, the first day of the rest of their existence. Yes, it is Public Domain Day, the day on which “life-plus” copyrights expire in those countries which calculate the duration of copyright from the death of the author, for N years thereafter, and to the end of that final year.

    • CC: Thank You!

      Thanks to all our supporters who helped us raise over $500,000 for our annual fundraising campaign! Stay tuned for a precise total and analysis — we’re still counting mailed checks! If you didn’t get a chance to donate to the 2010 campaign, start 2011 off right by showing the world how much you appreciate CC.

    • Open Data

      • Mashing up library data with open source

        Open Data

        Let’s start with the obvious. Without open data there wouldn’t be mashups. Coming from the library industry I’ve often heard vendors or computer services staff say “you can’t have access to that,” but it never sat well with me. I always wanted to know why. Why if I spent eight hours a day entering that data couldn’t have access to it in any format I wanted?

        The ludicrousness of it all became even clearer to me as I was doing my mashups research. There were all if these amazing APIs out there that I could use to enhance the data I was putting into our systems, but without proper access to my own data I was stuck watching organizations around the world making use of these tools instead of being able to participate in mashing up content. I’ve heard this phenomenon in libraries referred to as a “culture of learned helplessness.” After years of being told “no” we have come to just accept that the answer is going to be “no” and we no longer ask “why” or try to find a way around the limitations.

        This experience isn’t limited to libraries of course. We all have been in situations where we too have come up against these barriers of entry. Being the stubborn person that I am though I couldn’t accept it and so I moved away from the “culture of learned helplessness” to become an educator, teaching the power that comes along with open source and open data.

    • Open Access/Content

      • What Could Have Been Entering the Public Domain on January 1, 2011?

        What other works would be entering the public domain if we had the pre-1978 copyright laws? You might recognize some of the titles below.

        * The first two volumes of J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of Rings trilogy: The Fellowship of the Ring and The Two Towers
        * Samuel Beckett’s Waiting for Godot (his own translation/adaptation of the original version in French, En attendant Godot, published in 1952)
        * Kingsley Amis’ Lucky Jim
        * Aldous Huxley’s The Doors of Perception
        * Dr. Seuss’ Horton Hears a Who!
        * Pauline Réage’s Histoire d’O
        * Fredric Wertham’s Seduction of the Innocent, subtitled “The influence of comic books on today’s youth”
        * Tennessee Williams’ Cat on a Hot Tin Roof
        * Mac Hyman’s No Time for Sergeants
        * Alan Le May’s The Searchers
        * C.S. Lewis’ The Horse and His Boy, the fifth volume of The Chronicles of Narnia
        * Alice B. Toklas’ The Alice B. Toklas Cookbook

  • Programming

    • Parallel Programming: Announcement
    • What happens when over 1000 Java developers compare their development environments?

      Last year, we published a report on turnaround time, tools and application containers in the Java ecosystem. Over 1300 Java developers ended up sharing info about their development environment, and over 40,000 people found these results helpful.

    • Fujitsu Accelerates Exhaustive Verification of Java Software Through Parallel Processing
    • 7 programming languages on the rise

      Programmers looking for work in enterprise shops would be foolish not to learn the languages that underlie this paradigm, yet a surprising number of niche languages are fast beginning to thrive in the enterprise. Look beyond the mainstays, and you’ll find several languages that are beginning to provide solutions to increasingly common problems, as well as old-guard niche languages that continue to occupy redoubts. All offer capabilities compelling enough to justify learning a new way to juggle brackets, braces, and other punctuation marks.

    • New JBoss puts Java EE 6 to work

      The newest version of the open source JBoss Application Server has been released, and is now one of the first production-ready app servers to support Java EE 6.

      Java EE 6 is the newest version of the Java Platform, Enterprise Edition, which was designed to build enterprise applications with the Java programming language and related tools. The Java Community Process (JCP) oversees the development of Java EE.

    • Minimalism

      What do Scheme, Bash, and elisp have in common?

      They’re infinitely flexible and infinitely customizable and, if you force two users with great libraries of customizations to swap profiles, you are a cruel, cruel person.

  • Standards/Consortia

    • Future-proof your data archive

      For example, Archivematica’s media-type preservation plans convert .doc, .rtf, and .wpd word processing files to the XML-based Open Document Format (ODF) for preservation and to Adobe’s PDF for viewing. Likewise, the system saves .bmp, .jpg, .jp2, .png, .gif, .psd, .tga, and .tiff raster image files as uncompressed TIFFs for preservation and as JPEGs for viewing.

Leftovers

  • Twitter 2010 by the Numbers
  • How Cumbria’s village halls are pioneering a hi-tech revolution

    This winter, 130 activists gathered to discuss superfast broadband in a village hall in Cumbria. They had come from 100 villages, by 100 paths. Ali had presumably travelled north along the shore of Ullswater, rounded Loadpot Hill and turned south down the Lowther valley, until (three miles from where she began, but 45 minutes by car), she could take the narrow track east across the moor. Brian came over Hartside at 3,000ft, down the switchbacks into Eden, and worked his way along the East Fellside. They were joining a community experiment, which is becoming almost a revolution.

  • News of The World unique user numbers collapse behind paywall

    The News of the World website has recorded a 59 per cent decrease in unique users to its website in November -it’s first full month behind a paywall – compared to September 2010 – its last free-to-air month, according to comScore data supplied to the Beehive.

  • Gamer Completes Quake Under 1 Hour @ 100%

    A gamer completed the original Quake title for the PC in just over 52 minutes, killing off all enemies and discovering all secret areas.

  • 2011 New Years Computer Resolutions

    Every year about this time, people make resolutions. The origins of this practice are shrouded in mystery, but it suffices to say that for most people they have become a joke. Few people actually follow through on any of them. This is mostly because they are unachievable resolutions. This year, I have a list of universal resolutions for computer users that may solve part of this problem and help them improve themselves in the process.

  • Google Linux search suggestions

    Google Inc. continues to make incremental improvements to web search, and in this vein, Instant search was added in 2010. For better or worse, the accompanying search suggestions cannot be disabled. This drop down list is intended to save time, but it also gives some clues about what other people are searching for.

  • Is RSS becoming irrelevant?

    If you’re reading this post via a feed, you aren’t a “typical” user. According to stats gathered by Mozilla only about 7% of users use the RSS button. Though fewer Windows use the button, and nearly 14% of Linux users make use of it.

  • Science

    • ‘intelligent design is not creationism in any shape or form’ – yeah, right!

      A few weeks ago one of my fellow SciBloggers, Siouxsie Wiles, wrote an interesting piece about a childrens’ film that she’d seen where the underlying message seemed to be: you don’t have to understand, you just have to believe. Which as she says, does rather encapsulate a lot of pseudo-scientific nonsense that’s promoted these days (homeopathy, ‘miracle mineral supplements’, etc etc etc). Anyway, Siouxsie mentioned creationism in her post, & now a new commenter has dropped by to inform us that ‘intelligent design… is not creationism in any shape or form, but serious scientific debate about the latest evidence for the origins of life.’ My immediate response emulated the famous Tui billboards (here’s an example), but then I & other regulars there went on to point out that this comment is a long way off-base. And I thought the subject was worth revisiting in a separate post.

      For Siouxsie’s correspondent is wrong – so-called ‘intelligent design’ is creationism, pure and simple, and not a valid scientific explanation for life’s diversity. There’s a lot of evidence out there to back up this statement.

  • Security

  • Defence/Police/Aggression

    • Britain’s anti-terror control orders condemned as ‘trademark of despots’

      A powerful coalition of human rights groups has intensified pressure on the government to abandon its use of control orders, as ministers continue to wrangle over whether to scrap the controversial counter-terrorism measure.

      An international alliance of civil liberties organisations has united to condemn the UK for presiding over one of the “most serious violations” of natural justice in any developed democracy.

    • Monitoring schoolchildren

      Hundreds of schools have begun monitoring children in the past few year with the United Kingdom intent on stepping up the pace in the new year. Biometrics and CCTV are the most prevalent with many schools in Scotland planning on introducing or expanding schemes in the coming year.

    • United Nations against internet filtering
  • Cablegate

    • Why we must all join in the battle for WikiLeaks

      The WikiLeaks saga could be summed up as an affair which pitches the no-frontier freedom of the internet against the might of the world’s most powerful state. Its operations, impeded in the United States where private companies buckled under pressure from the administration, but relayed across the world thanks to the multiplication of ‘Mirror’ sites (see Mediapart’s WikiLeaksMirror site here), the daily disclosure of confidential US diplomatic cables has been continuing in the manner of a kind of Chinese torture. Totalling 251, 287, they have been released at the rate of a little less than 2,000, day after day, drop by drop.

  • Finance

    • The New Speed of Money, Reshaping Markets

      A SUBSTANTIAL part of all stock trading in the United States takes place in a warehouse in a nondescript business park just off the New Jersey Turnpike.

    • NJ Server Farms Remake the US Financial Markets

      he engine of Wall Street has shifted from the stock exchange floor to data centers in New Jersey, where computer-driven trading now accounts for 56 percent of all trading activity, according to the New York Times.

    • Goldman Sachs Prospers at Taxpayers’ Expense

      Robert Rubin was a very powerful man. After 26 years and rising to the level of co-senior partner, he left Goldman Sachs in 1994 to become Treasury Secretary in the Clinton administration.

      [...]

      What is this Goldman Sachs that issues forth such powerful people as Robert Rubin? What is its magic? Maybe we can find something out from their financial statements? If we look at the Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. and Subsidiaries Consolidated Statements of Earnings for December 2009, the company identifies itself as being in three businesses: Investment Banking, Trading and Principal Investments, and Asset Management and Securities Services. To get a better historic picture of these businesses, we have gone back to the beginning of Goldman Sachs’ life as a publicly held company in 1998.

    • Goldman Sachs, Citigroup Were on Dudley’s Agenda in First Days on The Job

      Meetings with top Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Citigroup Inc. officials were on the schedule of Federal Reserve Bank of New York President William Dudley in his first days on the job in February 2009, the regional reserve bank chief’s daybook showed yesterday.

      Dudley, a former partner and chief U.S. economist at Goldman, had an appointment to meet that bank’s chairman, Lloyd Blankfein, on Feb. 6, 2009, according to his schedule for 2009 and the first nine months of 2010. Four days earlier, Goldman was the topic of a planned meeting between Dudley and his staff.

    • New year resolutions for the business world

      Halt your threats and turn on the charm. We’ve heard enough dire warnings that JP Morgan, HSBC and hordes of hedge funds will quit the square mile in favour of Hong Kong or Geneva if higher taxes and bonus restrictions come into play. The public, for the most part, doesn’t care – in fact, there are plenty of volunteers who would pay bankers’ taxi fares to Heathrow in the hope of seeing the back of them.

      If you want an end to “banker bashing”, change tactics. Make the case persuasively for the contribution that finance makes to Britain’s economy. Explain how you’re helping business to grow. Teach us about how you can put our savings to work. Give us lessons that you’ve learned from the credit crunch. Tell us why we should love bankers. Nicely.

    • Special Report BAC, GS, C, JPM, MS, AIG, MET, DB

      A suggestion that banks deemed “Too Big” to fail should be broken up or made small enough to fail. an idea backed by former US Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan, Bank of England Governor Mervyn King and hedge-fund manager David Einhorn, also failed to win any support from US policy makers, as bank executives argued that size alone did not make a company risky, and that it could be essential for banks to compete.

    • Prosperity, Real or Imagined

      The author sees a conflict at the heart of Americans’ attitudes toward money and debt. We tend to view ourselves “as reasonably prudent and sober people,” he writes, while “the choices we make at the ballot box seem to be at odds with that self-image.”

    • Barack Obama: Jobs a priority in 2011

      President Barack Obama began the new year with a fresh promise to make jobs his top priority in 2011, even as he expressed optimism the nation has been “riding a few months of economic news that suggests our recovery is gaining traction.

      “And our most important task now is to keep that recovery going,” Obama said in his weekly address. “As president, that’s my commitment to you: to do everything I can to make sure our economy is growing, creating jobs and strengthening our middle class. That’s my resolution for the coming year.”

    • How the mortgage clearinghouse MERS became a villain in the foreclosure mess

      In the early 1990s, the biggest names in the mortgage industry hatched a plan for a new electronic clearinghouse that would transform the home loan business – and unlock billions of dollars of new investments and profits.

      At the time, mortgage documents were moved almost exclusively by hand and mail, a throwback to an era in which people kept stock certificates, too. That made it hard for banks to bundle home loans and sell them to investors. By contrast, a central electronic clearinghouse would allow the companies to transfer thousands of mortgages instantaneously, greasing the wheels of a system in which loans could be bought and sold repeatedly and quickly.

    • Oil rises to near $92 as global equities rally

      Oil prices rose to near $92 a barrel Tuesday, close to a two-year high, as a stock market rally to start 2011 boosted crude trader optimism.

    • Career Shift Often Means Drop in Living Standards

      The study, conducted by the John J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development at Rutgers, was based on a survey of Americans around the country who were unemployed as of August 2009 and re-interviewed about their job status twice over the next 15 months.

      As of November 2010, only about one-third had found replacement jobs, either as full-time workers (26 percent) or as part-time workers not wanting a full-time job (8 percent).

    • U.S. stock markets up in 2010 despite Europe crises, double-dip recession threat

      In a year of political upheaval, fiscal crisis in Europe and the threat of a double-dip recession in the United States, the stock market weathered all challenges, plodding upward.

      The final tally after Friday’s light trading day: The Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index closed up 12.8 percent for the year, at 1257.64, and the Dow Jones industrial average closed up 11 percent, at 11,577.51.

    • Mortgage lenders now advertising as crisis solvers

      PacWest Funding’s CEO watched in late 2007 as rival mortgage brokerages, banks and collaborators collapsed under the weight of the declining housing market.

      Fearing his company would be next, Curtis Melone restructured his business to offer what he felt people needed most: help with their crushing mortgage debt.

    • Bank of America hit with setback in MBIA Insurance mortgage liability lawsuit

      The bank lost a major procedural ruling in a lawsuit over its liability for allegedly toxic mortgages. The ruling will make it harder for the bank to defend itself in that case, and it could set a standard for similar disputes.

      Bank of America had tried to set a high bar for plaintiff MBIA Insurance by requiring that the files for each of 368,000 or more disputed loans be evaluated individually. That process would have cost MBIA $75 million, and it would have taken a team of 24 people more than four years, MBIA estimated.

    • About Grand Ole Ponzi

      Grand Ole Ponzi exposes the GOP’s intentional Ponzi Scheme being perpetrated on the American people. The GOP intends to make the top 2% wealthiest Americans even wealthier while making the middle class and everyone else poorer.

      A Ponzi scheme is an intentional fraud set up to get you to invest money while promising you that you’ll get a lot more money back – even though the schemers promising this know you will not get a lot more back and that they will be profiting from your money.

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

    • 2010 Trend Watch Update: Web Browser Privacy

      At the beginning of this year EFF identified a dozen important trends in law, technology and business that we thought would play a significant role in shaping digital rights in 2010, with a promise to revisit our predictions at the end of the year. Now, as 2010 comes to a close, we’re going through each of our predictions one by one to see how accurate we were in our trend-spotting.

    • Anonymous Attacks Tunisian Government over Wikileaks Censorship

      Anonymous, the loosely-organized band of hacker activists and vigilantes, has chosen its next victim: The government of Tunisia. (They’ve taken down its official website.) Why? In part, because it tried to block access to secret-sharing website Wikileaks.

    • A Bittersweet Goodbye Post

      So I’ve been dreading this for some time. But this is going to be my last post for FDL, a community I’ve been honored and fucking thrilled to join ever since Jane let me take Attackerman 2.0 here in June 2008. My departure is pretty mundane: the congressional press galleries are wary of giving me permanent credentials while I’m affiliated here, and I don’t want to impede any of my reporting responsibilities at my day job with Wired‘s Danger Room. So off I go.

      It’s really hard for me to imagine writing Attackerman without it being a part of FDL. I’ve been incredibly privileged to host it among a community as thoughtful, challenging, provocative and passionate as this one. Thanks to everyone who challenged me in comments: even if I got pissed, you helped me reexamine the weak points in my thinking. I love seeing FDL expand, grow and develop. Now I’ll watch it happen as a commenter, well-wisher and reader.

    • Saudi Arabia clamps down on bloggers, news sites, others

      Saudi Arabia is beginning a major internet clamp-down, starting with blogs, forums, news sites, personal websites, electronic archives, chat rooms and online ads.

      New regulations were approved by Dr. Abdulaziz Bin Mohee Al-Dien Khoga, the Minister of Culture and Information, which will require licences for the operation of an e-publishing site within the country when the laws come into effect in a month’s time,

    • FTC Chairman: ‘Do Not Track’ Rules Would Help Web Thrive

      Let’s say I stop at the mall to pick up a new jacket. As I browse through the stores, I am followed by a man with a walkie-talkie, reporting on every item I look at and passing that information to the other stores in the mall. By the time I reach the third floor, out of a store pops a salesperson, holding exactly the madras jacket I want, in the red-and-yellow plaid I favor as well as in my size.

      Disconcerting? A little. Convenient? Absolutely. I buy the jacket.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • WikiLeaks: US targets EU over GM crops

      The US embassy in Paris advised Washington to start a military-style trade war against any European Union country which opposed genetically modified (GM) crops, newly released WikiLeaks cables show.

      In response to moves by France to ban a Monsanto GM corn variety in late 2007, the ambassador, Craig Stapleton, a friend and business partner of former US president George Bush, asked Washington to penalise the EU and particularly countries which did not support the use of GM crops.

      “Country team Paris recommends that we calibrate a target retaliation list that causes some pain across the EU since this is a collective responsibility, but that also focuses in part on the worst culprits.

      “The list should be measured rather than vicious and must be sustainable over the long term, since we should not expect an early victory. Moving to retaliation will make clear that the current path has real costs to EU interests and could help strengthen European pro-biotech voices,” said Stapleton, who with Bush co-owned the St Louis-based Texas Rangers baseball team in the 1990s.

    • Copyrights

      • Publishers worry that Ottawa will allow more access to foreign firms

        At a recent panel discussion about the book industry, publisher David Kent cut through the moderator’s polite introduction and jokingly accepted the label Satan. The bubbly Kent might seem an unlikely incarnation of evil, but he’s the CEO of HarperCollins Canada, a foreign-owned publisher, and his Canadian competitors were out in force that night in Toronto, ribbing him as they aggressively denounced foreign ownership – just in case anyone was thinking we might need more of it in the Canadian book industry.

Clip of the Day

Bohemian Rhapsody, for Four Violins


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