06.02.11

SCOTUS Helps the Monopolists, Not the Citizens of the United States (Again)

Posted in America, Patents at 3:55 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Supreme Court US, 2009

Summary: The Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) shows its commitment to other dubious departments/branches of the government (USPTO) rather than justice for the people

SSCOTUS deals another blow to software developers (as before) by sidling with the unreasonable and requiring that coders essentially study hundreds of thousands of patents before writing a single line of code. Ars Technica says that according to SCOTUS, “‘willful blindness’ to patent infringement not OK”:

In a lopsided 8-1 ruling, the Supreme Court on Tuesday held that “willful blindness” to the existence of a patent will not save you from charges of inducing other companies to violate the patent at issue. The case has drawn interest from the software industry because a lower court decision had chosen a laxer standard, “deliberate indifference,” that a coalition of software companies warned would be bad for innovation. The Supreme Court agreed with the lower court that the defendant here was liable, but it did so with a narrower rule that is less likely to ensnare inadvertent infringers in future.

Remember that “justice” is relative and it can also be pronounced “just us” (the rich people, those in power who use the legal system to protect them from the population). This magnitude of cronyism can easily make European software developers say to the USPTO and SCOTUS (which defends the same line, being part of the same institution) “up yours!” Let us “innovate in peace,” advised Knuth to the European system when he urged against software patents. Knuth is quite the backer of Google, which suffers a lot from Microsoft’s patent attacks (and patent tax).

Lodsys Patent Attacks on Android (Linux) Developers Come From Microsoft’s Former CTO

Posted in GNU/Linux, Google, Microsoft, Patents at 3:45 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Nathan Myhrvold

Summary: Further discussion about Microsoft’s attacks on Linux through known proxies

AS we showed earlier this year and beforehand, Microsoft’s former CTO had extorted Android makers using the patent pile he had accumulated with financial help from Bill Gates and Microsoft. We have already alluded to Apple’s role in it, which ought to tell iPhone/iPad developers that they should rebel against Apple, not ask for Apple’s help. As Jan Wildeboer has just put it, not only does Microsoft’s former CTO dodge the issue; Pro-Microsoft charlatan Florian Müller too is hiding this fact while also being regularly challenged (by yours truly too) to denounce Intellectual Ventures.

Did @fosspatents inform that the lodsys patent was formerly owned by Intellectual Ventures? Whereever there’s a #swpat case, MSFT is close.

Nothing ever changed at Microsoft. It is a bunch of manipulative sociopaths who use proxies to wage their wars. Let us remember that Intellectual Ventures has become notorious for passing patents to wage wars too (in case someone, for example, does not accept its taxing scheme). Speaking of proxies, we opine that amid the turmoil at Nokia, “Microsoft wants to destroy Nokia and get its *hardware* patents cheaply (not just software patents) to extort *all* Android sellers.” (to quote my latest dent) Or as Malroy put it, “Nokia thanks to the efforts of the Trojan Elop, has become like a pair of Soviet era made shoes — worth more for the parts used than the finished pair of shoes.”

Microsoft did the same thing to Yahoo! and to Novell, which is now owned by a partner of Microsoft along with the UNIX assets. Scary, eh? Microsoft’s buddy/mate Attachmate is scary enough as an owner of UNIX, so Pamela Jones came back from her retirement phase just to post this article titled “What Unix Copyrights Does Novell Own?”

Before I passed the reins of Groklaw content to Mark Webbink, I had obtained some additional early AT&T/Regents of California documents from the University of California. Thanks to Mark, I finally had time to scan them in and upload them and add them to Groklaw’s permanent collection. I’d like to share some highlights with you, at his request.

What stands out to me the most is that AT&T licensed BSD code from the Regents, repeatedly and very early. I will show you the agreement. And another document confirms that AT&T didn’t register copyrights on 32V, relying on trade secret protection only, back when you had to take certain steps to own valid copyrights.

Novell, now Attachmate, may think it owns all the pre-1995 UNIX copyrights, thanks to Novell’s victory over SCO at trial, but all that was established at trial was that Novell did not *transfer* any pre-1995 copyrights it owned to SCO. The trial didn’t parse out and establish what precisely Novell owned, what it had obtained from AT&T in the first place, or what AT&T owned, for that matter.

Salesforce’s CEO said that Microsoft is "somewhat disgusting”, but we would rather just say that Microsoft is manipulative and it is trying to use all sorts of intellectual monopolies right now, obviously to derail the inevitable domination of Linux. Microsoft has already destroyed Novell using a patent deal. SLE* is still Microsoft’s (and Attachmate’s) tool for replacing Red Hat systems, for example, with Microsoft-taxed GNU/Linux. Meanwhile, despite another milestone, OpenSUSE gets neglected and with the exception of some hype about World IPv6 Day, there is almost not a word about it. Proprietary software like Vibe is all we have left from Novell in YouTube (many new videos from Novelldemo, such as this one).

Say no to software patents and help end the destructive nature of the Microsoft thugs, who are no longer just inside Microsoft (some formed the world biggest patent troll, Intellectual Ventures, while others founded a media-meddling patents booster known as “Gates Foundation”).

Ethical Software: A Proposal

Posted in Site News at 3:04 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Microsoft in words

Summary: Software and ethics discussed in a new letter to the editor

Prinz and his prior 2 letters to us made some interesting points and were well laid out. In a followup letter from Prinz [PDF] he explains what he meant by Ethical Software. This long letter contains many visual illustrations, so please consider taking the time to read it and provide feedback.

“Windows 8 Sounds Like It’s Basically Windows Phone 7 on a PC”

Posted in Microsoft, Vista, Vista 7, Vista 8, Windows at 2:28 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Mojave 2.0

Open road

Summary: The farcical version/derivative of Vista known as “Windows 8″ gets ridiculed even in the corporate press

YESTERDAY we quoted Dvorak on Windows 8. As we argued all along, it turns out that Microsoft does not have a new version of Windows. A DRM-laden shop is not an operating system feature and the current build lacks compelling features to actually make many sales (sales to OEMs should not count, as the end buyer makes no actual choice). “So Microsoft has demonstrated Windows 8,” wrote Will in IRC. “Sounds like it’s basically Windows Phone 7 on a PC.” Or worse than that: as Wired Magazine puts it, this is “Just Windows 7 With a New Skin”. To quote:

Microsoft has shown an early look at Windows 8. The upcoming OS is designed to run on any machine, from a tablet to a desktop PC, and while it has some genuinely clever features, it is at heart yet another skinned version of regular old Windows. Here’s a video of it in action. Skip to a minute in if you don’t care to hear about how tired the poor Windows 8 team is after so much work.

Vista, “Vista 8″ and “Vista 7″ as we call them (because Windows 8 is like Mojave and Windows 7 to Vista) sure looks like it is too little, too late in a world of mobility. Microsoft has resorted to hardware bribery — not just OEM kickbacks — in a desperate attempt to slow down the inevitable. GNU/Linux and Android are rising and overcoming Microsoft’s crimes against the industry.

IBM Needs to Explain Office Suite Patents (and How Bill Gates Was Attacking Interoperability With Lotus, Using Patents Against OpenOffice.org)

Posted in Bill Gates, IBM, Microsoft, Office Suites, OpenDocument, OpenOffice, Patents at 1:54 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Goodfellas

Summary: A look back at how Microsoft distorted the market of office suites and a candid suggestion for IBM to open up on the real issues, not the minor details

THE “RUTHLESS” Bill Gates is nowadays buying newspapers to call himself something else and distract from his evil side, rewriting history to a sufficient extent so that people will forget his poisonous legacy that everyone suffers from, to this date. It is called reputation laundering. Today we would like to go back and show people the real Bill Gates. Later this month we hope to get a helping hand from another editor who can help show some of today’s offences from Gates (but that’ll be left aside for now as it is partly off topic).

“On another occasion Gates showed not only his hatred of standards and interoperability but also his love of patents.”So yesterday we wrote about how IBM becomes a key player in ODF. IBM and Microsoft are rivals as much as Apple and Microsoft are rivals. They actually collaborate in some areas where it is beneficial to both companies (not necessarily to the externalities). Microsoft, which is is run by sociopaths, has quite a history of copying and also breaking Lotus. We showed this using Comes vs Microsoft court exhibits. A Techrights informant has just reminded us that, in Comes vs Microsoft, “PXE 3078 has Lotus working for interoperability and MS working against it.” We covered this several years ago. Bill Gates said that giving out the Office 2000 formats to competitors seems crazy and this type of remark occurred later too. On another occasion Gates showed not only his hatred of standards and interoperability but also his love of patents. On several occasions he tried to use software patents against OpenOffice.org, even resorting to patent blackmail against Sun. A lot of publications speak of the OpenOffice.org news in the context which excepts and excludes patents (see examples at the bottom of this post). This is a mistake. To give just one example of a typical interpretation of this announcement:

Continuing what it likes to describe as its “long-standing commitment to open source,” IBM has this week confirmed that it will now take an active role in the new OpenOffice.org code base submitted to The Apache Software Foundation Incubator.

IBM and open source you say? Should that be unusual?

This does not tell the whole story. Remember what we wrote about the Apache licence some weeks ago (this led to FUD). Remember who likes this type of licence, which Microsoft proponents sometimes champion (and Microsoft now gives money to the ASF too). As we stated yesterday, too much would have been written about the news and we wish not to bore with repetition. But what we shall say is that Microsoft is vehemently opposing interoperability (the problem is at the core, including Bill Gates), so we must defend ODF, even if it means tolerating IBM. But IBM should not be treated as our friend here (nor should The Document Foundation, which has some residues from Novell). After many observations were being made in our IRC channels we have reached the conclusion which some of us accept. It is possible that IBM, which cross-licenses (software patents) with Microsoft, can now take its proprietary version of OpenOffice.org (Lotus Symphony) and further extend it legally without contributing back the changes. That’s what an Apache licence will do assuming that the passage of copyrights to Apache works as IBM hoped. This whole thing shows the dangers of copyright assignment agreements (pay attention, Canonical) and if the LGPLv3 is abandoned as Bradley from the FSF suspects [3], then it will be possible for IBM to make Symphony the only patents-’covered’ derivative of OpenOffice.org (indemnification for example). The big vendors are playing evil games to increase their own power and ODF gets wedged somewhere in the middle. IBM could have joined hands with LibreOffice and its umbrella organisation. It hasn’t done so yet. There were even snide remarks from IBM. One person who urged IBM’s most relevant Vice President in this area claimed that the latter has not approved his comment, although after some discussion and an E-mail from this vice president we learned that he was too busy (which is probably true and not an excuse/afterthought). Anyway, IBM needs to clarify two things now: 1) will it join LibreOffice? 2) Where does it stand on the subject of licensing/copyrights and patents? IBM is generally a silent company after the antitrust complications, so it has communications problems (even when it communicates it is trying to hide the communication).

References:

  1. Statement about Oracle’s move to donate OpenOffice.org assets to the Apache Foundation

    The Document Foundation would welcome the reuniting of the OpenOffice.org and LibreOffice projects into a single community of equals in the wake of the departure of Oracle. The step Oracle has taken today was no doubt taken in good faith, but does not appear to directly achieve this goal. The Apache community, which we respect enormously, has very different expectations and norms – licensing, membership and more – to the existing OpenOffice.org and LibreOffice projects. We regret the missed opportunity but are committed to working with all active community members to devise the best possible future for LibreOffice and OpenOffice.org.

  2. Oracle gives OpenOffice to Apache

    IBM’s Kevin Cavanaugh, VP of Collaboration Solutions., which lobbied for Oracle to spin OpenOffice off after it became clear that Oracle wasn’t going to put much, if any, resources into OpenOffice, said in a statement, “IBM welcomes Oracle’s contribution of OpenOffice software to the Apache Software Foundation. We look forward to engaging with other community members to advance the technology beginning with our strong support of the incubation process for OpenOffice at Apache.”

  3. Ditching Copyleft to Compete with a Fork?

    I was disturbed today to read that Oracle will seek to relicense all OpenOffice code under the Apache-2.0 license and move OpenOffice into the Apache Software Foundation.

    I’ve written recently about how among the permissive licenses, my favorite is clearly the Apache License 2.0. However, I think that one should switch from a copyleft license to a permissive one only in rare circumstances and with the greatest of care.

    Obviously, in this case, I oppose Oracle’s relicense of OpenOffice.org under Apache-License-2.0. It is probably obvious why I feel that way, but I shall explain nonetheless, just in case. I’m going to mostly ignore the motives for doing so, which I think are obvious: Oracle (and IBM, who are quoted in support of this move) for their own reasons don’t like The Document Foundation fork (LibreOffice) of OpenOffice.org. This is a last-ditch effort by IBM and Oracle to thwart the progress of that fork, which has been reported as quite successful and many distributions have begun to adopt LibreOffice. (Even non-software sites sites like Metafilter have users discussing changing to LibreOffice .)

  4. Oracle proposes OpenOffice.org to Apache Incubator
  5. The issue of bringing harmony to copyright assignment

    There is an entirely different class of CAAs where you give a company full right to your code, however. Sun (and later Oracle) demanded this for contributions to OpenOffice.org. They need this to be able to incorporate the contributions into non-free versions of OpenOffice like StarOffice or IBM’s Lotus Suite. So in essence, you have to give them the right to sell non-free versions of your code or you can’t contribute. As far as I’m concerned, this is clearly not a good use of CAAs!

  6. Oracle gives OpenOffice to the Apache Foundation — should we care?

    I guess Oracle thought the same thing. They ignored OpenOffice and its contributors after buying Sun. Sure they killed OpenSolaris first. It was only a matter of time before they ankled OpenOffice.

Links 2/6/2011: Skype Reverse-Engineered, Mandriva 2011 Beta 3

Posted in News Roundup at 12:58 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Linux and Ruby Geeks Compared

    If you think there’s only one type of geek, you apparently don’t know many geeks. It could be argued that there are as many kinds of geek as there are geeks in the world. Still, they can be loosely broken down into groups and sub-groups, recognizing that there is overlap and some exceptions. The chart at the bottom of this post is one rather amusing way of looking at the “evolution of the geek.” Personally, I’ve been really surprised to discover a rather striking contrast between Linux geeks and Ruby geeks, having spent time with “members” of both communities over the past couple of years in New York.

  • Server

    • IS buys into Linux specialist Synaq

      Internet Solutions (IS) has acquired a majority stake in Synaq, the Johannesburg-based managed Linux service provider and messaging company, for an undisclosed sum.

      IS says the deal will help it address the demand from the small and medium enterprise market for managed communications services.

  • Audiocasts/Shows

  • Kernel Space

    • Graphics Stack

      • Arch Linux Enables Mesa Floating Point Textures

        The rolling-release Arch Linux distribution has just enabled floating point textures for Mesa. This was the hotly-debated feature for Mesa that provides OpenGL floating point textures and render targets, but is disabled by default since its protected by patents in the United States and elsewhere. Arch Linux users when building new versions of Mesa will receive this support irrespective of their physical location.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC)

      • The end of the Linux desktop wars

        The desktop wars may be finally ending, but not quite the way we may have expected.

        Take the GNOME Shell interface, which reviewers admire for its general direction but have some issues with the actual execution within GNOME 3.

      • KDE, Qt & LightDM: Progress Made

        LightDM, the cross-desktop display manager that provides a clean API for writing multiple user-interfaces and for delivering fast performance, continues to mature. With the Ubuntu 11.10 release in October, Ubuntu is using LightDM instead of the GDM from GNOME as the display / log-in manager. For those concerned that the KDE side may be not getting enough love, it actually is and there’s been progress made on a Qt-powered interface.

        David Edmundson, a KDE developer, has written a Qt library for making simple greeter engines. “I’ve written a Qt library for making greeter engines, as well as a very basic demo greeter which is more for testing than a real demo of what can be done. This library is designed to be very QML-ready, with a strong emphasis on using models rather than simple lists.” LightDM is meant to be extended to handle various interfaces from Qt or GTK to having HTML/CSS-driven interfaces for this promising log-in manager.

    • GNOME Desktop

      • Four tweaks to bring back missing functionality in GNOME 3.0

        The user interface shell of the open source GNOME desktop environment was completely redesigned for GNOME 3.0, which was released last month. The update brought a multitude of significant changes to the environment’s underlying technical infrastructure and the user-facing desktop experience. Fedora became the first major Linux distribution to ship the new GNOME environment with the official launch last week of Fedora 15.

      • Ready for Gnome 3.2? Meet Gnome Contacts

        The gnome developers are hard at work making the first linux desktop, that do not look like a cheap windows/mac rip off, even better. There are stupid mistakes they made along the way, but still Gnome 3.0 gives the best experience free software can offer by default. Obviously there are more feature need to be included to make it a complete replacement for your good old Gnome 2.x. For the time being you can use these extensions to get some functionalities back.

  • Distributions

    • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandrake/Mandriva Family

    • Red Hat Family

      • Red Hat to Webcast Results for First Quarter Fiscal Year 2012
      • Behind the scenes: a community workshop for Red Hatters

        Some of you may have heard that Robyn, Max, Sebastian, and I will be teaching a workshop on open source community participation to our fellow Red Hatters in Raleigh next week (June 8th, 2011). It’s the first run of such a workshop, and remixes some of the things we’ve done at POSSE for a more general audience – in a sense, we’re removing the discipline-specific (“you’re a college professor!”) parts and seeing how our stuff generalizes to folks already working in (open source) industry.

      • Fedora

        • 20 Things to do after installing Fedora 15

          Here are few things you can do after installing Fedora 15 to make the experience better. You may have to enable sudo to follow some of the tips or you can run the commands in terminal by logging in as root (su). The following are in no particular order. Feel free to skip the ones you do not need.

    • Debian Family

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • 30 Days With…Ubuntu Linux
          • You Can Run Ubuntu On Your HTC Desire HD

            If smartphone hardware can run Android, a Linux-based operating system, why can’t it run a full-blown Linux distro? In fact, you can run Ubuntu on many Android-powered phones.

            To get Ubuntu to run on a smartphone, some have started the OS side-by-side with Android, others have used emulators or virtualized hardware. On occasion a developer steps up and creates a bootable, functional Ubuntu image. If you’ve got an HTC Desire HD, you can count yourself as one of the lucky ones!

          • Six Months Of Rocking Ubuntu Events

            Education and learning has always been an important part of the Ubuntu culture. It is important to us because we always want to present an environment in which everyone is welcome to participate, whatever your skills, location, or experience.

          • Everything You Need to Know About Ubuntu 11.04 Natty Narwhal

            A month has been passed since the eventful release of Ubuntu 11.04 Natty Narwhal. Many loyal Ubuntu users turned hostile with this release and Canonical’s new Unity interface is at the receiving end for what it does and what it doesn’t. I actually liked the new Unity approach to desktop and I believe that it has got a great future, provided that Canonical is able to rectify the bugs and usability issues in time. This post is for those who would like to use Unity. A quick recap of Ubuntu 11.04 tips and tricks that we published during the month.

          • Ubuntu 6.06 LTS (Dapper Drake) End of Life

            Ubuntu announced its 6.06 Server release 5 years ago, on June 1, 2006. For the LTS Server releases, Ubuntu committed to ongoing security and critical fixes for a period of 5 years. The maintenance period has now ended for Ubuntu 6.06 LTS Server.

            Ubuntu 6.06 LTS was a major milestone for the Ubuntu project, being the first long-term release. Its retirement evokes memories of Ubuntu as a younger project, and reminds us of all that we’ve accomplished together in the five years since we released the “Dapper Drake”.

          • Flavours and Variants

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Phones

      • Android

        • Intel touts ‘ultrabooks’; Highlights Android Honeycomb Atom-based tablet

          Intel on Tuesday touted “ultrabooks,” tablet and laptop tweeners that would resemble MacBook Airs, and said these lightweight devices will account for 40 percent of the laptop market by the end of 2012.

          Speaking at the Computex show in Taipei, Sean Maloney, Intel’s executive vice president, said these ultrabooks will continue to improve annually. While the ultrabook phrase will generate initial buzz, these devices are evolutionary. What’s initially unclear is how an ultrabook differs from the netbook—a market under fire from tablets. Intel frequently touts next-gen reference designs. Anyone remember the mobile Internet devices (MID)?

        • MIPS enters Android Honeycomb tablet race

          Amid all the brouhaha about the low power–chip tussle between Intel and ARM, another processor architecture has been quietly advancing into the same tablet and smartphone battleground: MIPS Technologies, which has announced a partnership with Beijing’s Ingenic Semiconductor to port Android 3.0, aka Honeycomb, to the Chinese chipmaker’s upcoming ultra–low power system-on-chip.

        • Computex buzz: ARM vs Intel keeps people talking

          According to Nvidia CEO Huang Jen-Hsun, Android is the fastest growing operating system in computing history

Free Software/Open Source

  • Matt Asay Preaches

    Matt Asay doesn’t get sharing. The world needs software and FLOSS is a great way to produce it. If someone needs some software and can produce it they should. They also get to use all the software floating around in the community of FLOSS to go along with that. That is the right thing to do. Otherwise that software may not be written and our world in which we are social beings depending on and supporting each other will be poorer. It is a moral imperative of every human being and their organizations to try to make the world a better place. That’s good for everyone, not just the one doing the good work.

  • Google open sources $68.2m realtime comm platform

    Free whitepaper – Five Tips for Effective Backup and Recovery in Virtual Environments

    Google has open sourced a framework for realtime video and audio inside the browser. Known as WebRTC, the framework is based on technology the company acquired with its $68.2 million purchase of Global IP Solutions (GIPS) last year.

    “We’d like to make the browser the home for innovation in real time communications,” Google said in a blog post. “Until now, real time communications required the use of proprietary signal processing technology that was mostly delivered through plug-ins and client downloads.” The framework lets developers build realtime applications using HTML and JavaScript APIs.

  • Web Browsers

    • Firefox 4 hits 14.2% of worldwide market in May – study
    • Mozilla

      • Update: Spread Firefox is taking a breather

        Today we took Spread Firefox offline as I shared earlier. I want to thank everyone that has worked hard on Spread Firefox over the years. When it took off in 2004, it was truly innovative as a social network and organizing ground for our grassroots marketing efforts.

      • After a Few Short Months, Firefox 4 Is Mozilla’s Leading Browser Version

        As Mozilla continues to contend with claimed performance problems with its new Firefox 4 browser (although some reader responses to our post on the matter argue that there are none), it is achieving new milestones. According to data from StatCounter, which specializes in web analytics, the Firefox 4 browser claimed a hefty 14.2 percent of the global browser market in May–higher than the 13.2 percent claimed by the longstanding version 6. Meanwhile, the Firefox 5 beta has arrived, and there is even a new version 6 of the browser in the Aurora channel. Mozilla is moving full steam ahead with its new rapid release cycle for Firefox, competing directly with Google Chrome’s development schedule.

  • FUD of the Day

  • CMS

    • The Diaspora Project – First Year In Graphs

      We know that if you’re not a contributor and don’t follow us on Github, it’s hard to see Diaspora grow and evolve. Now that Diaspora is moving into its second year and a new phase of development, here are some numbers on the progress we’ve made.

  • Standards/Consortia

    • Why I’ve been throwing Open Standards under the bus

      This may not sound like such a big deal until you realize that I am a big advocate of Open Source and Open Standards. In the Enterprise, I believe that these technologies are absolutely essential to building best of breed heterogeneous computing environments. But at home? Eh, not so much.

Leftovers

  • Think PCs will drop in price? Think again, warns Intel

    The Golden Age of ever-decreasing PC prices is over, at least as far as Intel is concerned.

    Speaking to investors in London last week, the chip giant’s CFO Stacy Smith boasted how the vendor had broken the pricing death spiral that has bedevilled the PC industry for most of its history.

  • Intel Admits Its Chips are Over-Priced
  • Microsoft postpones IDP for 2 weeks to re-consult with chip players
  • Pondering storage options
  • Security

    • NATO report threatens to ‘persecute’ Anonymous

      NATO leaders have been warned that Wikileaks-loving ‘hacktivist’ collective Anonymous could pose a threat to member states’ security, following recent attacks on the US Chamber of Commerce and defence contractor HBGary – and promise to ‘persecute’ its members.

      In a toughly-worded draft report to the NATO Parliamentary Assembly, General Rapporteur Lord Jopling claims that the loose-knit, leaderless group is “becoming more and more sophisticated”, and “could potentially hack into sensitive government, military, and corporate files”.

    • Ensuring your information is safe online

      The Internet has been an amazing force for good in the world—opening up communications, boosting economic growth and promoting free expression. But like all technologies, it can also be used for bad things. Today, despite the efforts of Internet companies and the security community, identity theft, fraud and the hijacking of people’s email accounts are common problems online.

      Bad actors take advantage of the fact that most people aren’t that tech savvy—hijacking accounts by using malware and phishing scams that trick users into sharing their passwords, or by using passwords obtained by hacking other websites. Most account hijackings are not very targeted; they are designed to steal identities, acquire financial data or send spam. But some attacks are targeted at specific individuals.

Reader’s Picks and Comments

  • Anti-Trust

    • Erratic behavior from Microsoft proxy, Lodsys. PJ notes:

      Lodsys didn’t expect the kind of letter it got from Apple, and it took it as a clear indication that Apple intended to litigate, if necessary, and Lodsys didn’t want that to happen in California, so it didn’t honor its word to developers that they had 21 days to respond to the cease and desist letters and went ahead and sued in Texas. Natch. However, that doesn’t at all mean that the litigation will happen in Texas, if Apple intervenes

    • NDAs conceal portions of Lodsys’ extortion of Apple developers.

      we cannot unilaterally publish the letter because it refers to information that was obtained with an obligation of confidentiality to Apple and we do not have their permission to do so.

    • Microsoft muscles ARM makers with odious restrictions. Techrights has documented this for netbook makers and Barns and Noble has called it anti-competitive in court.

      Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) is putting “troublesome” restrictions on makers of processors used to run the coming Windows tablet-computer operating system, Acer Inc. (2353) Chairman and Chief Executive Officer J.T. Wang said.
      “They’re really controlling the whole thing, the whole process,” Wang said at the Computex trade show in Taipei without identifying the restrictions. Chip suppliers and PC makers “all feel it’s very troublesome,” he said.

    • Microsoft Squeaks. No One Listens.

      M$ is apparently trying to dictate to the world on what kinds of ARMed systems M$’s “8″ will run. … By trying to freeze the market and dictate hardware compatibility, M$ will only delay its roll-out and restrict itself to a niche. … M$ cannot force all manufacturers to use Qualcomm;s chips and Qualcomm cannot supply the whole market. … No one wants to wait for M$ to get its act together while hundreds of millions of units could be sold.

  • Hardware

  • Civil Rights

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Software patents described by a South African official.

      Geraldine Fraser-Moleketi, the previous Minister for Public Service and Administration, recently described software patents as “an issue which poses a considerable threat to the growth of the African software sector”, adding that there had been “recent pressure by certain multinational corporations to file software patents in our national and regional patent offices … all of the current so-called developed countries built up their considerable software industries in the absence of software patents”. She said that for those same countries to insist on software patents now “is simply to place patents as barriers in front of newcomers”

Clip of the Day

Choose Ubuntu (new video, not an endorsement)


Credit: TinyOgg

ES: ¡Ya Basta!

Posted in Patents at 3:12 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

by Fred Wilson*

(ODF | PDF

Original en: www.avc.com/

Creo que las patentes de software no debería existir. Ellas son un impuesto sobre la innovación. Y el software está más cerca de los medios de comunicación de lo que está del hardware. Patentar el software es como patentar la música.

El lío en torno a las patentes Lodsys debe ser una llamada de atención para todos los involucrados en el negocio de patentes (los burócratas del gobierno, legisladores, abogados, inversores, empresarios, etc) ya que el sistema es totalmente inestable y no podemos seguir el la misma situación.

En primer lugar, la idea de una transacción en una aplicación no es nada nuevo. Esa idea ha estado residente en el software desde hace muchos años. El hecho de que la USPTO (Oficina de Patentes y Marcas de los Estados Unidos) concedió una patente sobre la idea de “aplicación en las transacciones” es ridícula y una vergüenza.

En segundo lugar, Lodsys ni siquiera “inventó” la idea. Ellos compraron la patente y ahora la están utilizando como una bomba de racimo contra toda la comunidad de desarrolladores de aplicaciones móviles. Ellos son el troll de patentes icónico, agravando la innovación y a los innovadores para su propio egoísta beneficio. Ellos son malvados y merecen toda la mala voluntad que están recibiendo.

En tercer lugar Apple y Google, los desarrolladores de los ecosistemas de aplicación para el IOS y Android (y en los sistemas de transacción en la aplicación), licenciaron las patentes Lodsys pero eso no es lo suficientemente bueno para Lodsys. Ahora están persiguiendo a los desarrolladores móviles que utilizan los sistemas de IOS y Android. El punto de aplicación de estos ecosistemas es que un “desarrollador en un garaje” puede entrar en negocios con estas plataformas. Pero estos “desarrolladores en un garaje” no puede costearse un abogado para representarse a sí mismos en una pelea legal contra un troll de patentes.

Todo esto es una locura. No puedo entender por qué nuestro gobierno permite que esta mierda continue así. No está bien y es mal para la sociedad tener este tipo de cáncer que crece dentro de nuestra economía. Cada vez que tengo una reunión con un empleado o un legislador o del gobierno que trabajan en y alrededor del sector de la innovación, traigo a colación el sistema de patentes y las patentes de software en particular. Tenemos que cambiar las leyes. Tenemos que eliminar las patentes de software. Esta ridícula situación Lodsys es el ejemplo perfecto de por qué. Tenemos que decir “¡YA BASTA!”.
____
*Fred Wilson es un inversor de capital riesgo así com director de Union Square Ventures.

Notas del Traductor:
Nuestro sincero agradecimiento a Fred por permitirnos reproducir su artículo para nuestros lectores de habla Hispana, así como por su oposición y activismo contra las patentes de software. Como buen inversor de capital de riesgo, Fred esta completamente en lo correcto al oponerse a las patentes de software que no solo inhiben la innovación si no que no permiten el desarrollo de las pequeñas y medianas empresas, las que son vitales en el futur desarrollo de los países del Tercer Mundo al ofrecer un mejor futuro a millones de personas. Las patentes de software también sirven como arma de dominación al encadenar a países enteros a formatos digitales privados, el Colonialismo Digital. Así como España e Italia se estan resistiendo a ser sometidos a ellas en la Unión Europea, nosotros en los países del Tercer Mundo debemos oponernos a ellas también por nuestro bienestar y el de las futuras generaciones.

Translation produced by Eduardo Landaveri, the esteemed administrator of the Spanish portal of Techrights.

Fred Wilson gave us his permission to publish his “Enough is Enough” piece.

At the end Eduardo added (translator’s notes): “Our sincere thanks to Fred for allowing us to reproduce the article for our Spanish speaking readers, as well as his opposition and campaigning against software patents. As a good venture capital investor, Fred is completely correct to oppose software patents that not only stifle innovation but also will not allow the development of small and medium enterprises, which are vital to the future development of Third World countries to provide better future to millions of people. Software patents are also used as a weapon of domination over the whole country chained to private digital formats, the Digital Colonialism. As Spain and Italy are resisting being subjected to them in the European Union, we in the Third World countries should oppose them also for our own well being and of our future generations.”

ES: La Presión Crece Para Que Todas las Patentes de Software Sean Invalidadas, Incluso en los Estados Unidos

Posted in America, Europe, Patents at 3:07 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

La Oficina de los trols pertenece en el cementerio

Oficina de Patentes – Creación de Herbert C. Hoover

Patent Office - Herbert C. Hoover Building

(ODF | PDF | English/original)

Resumen: En parte gracias a los trolls de patentes, la reputación de la USPTO (Oficina de Patentes y Marcas de los Estados Unidos) se está desintegrando, se están realizando más llamadas para la aniquilación de todas las patentes de software, y Europa, mientras tanto, tratando de imitar o heredar el desorden de la USPTO (Oficina de los trols).

El Lodsys troll[http://techrights.org/2011/05/23/apple-and-lodsys/] ha sido útil en el sentido de que anima a la gente para llamar activamente para el fin de las patentes de software. A medida que más demandas judiciales presentadas por este troll de patentes[http://www.technollama.co.uk/lodsys-sues-app-developers] (Lodsys continúa aún con demandas más en Texas, por supuesto), un capitalista de riesgo, dice que “Suficiente es Suficiente[http://www.avc.com/a_vc/2011/06/enough-is-enough.html?utm_source=pulsenews&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+AVc+%28A+VC%29]” y citando su blog:

Creo que las patentes de software no debería existir. Se trata de un impuesto sobre la innovación. Y el software está más cerca de los medios de comunicación de lo que es el hardware. Patentar el software es como patentar la música.

El lío en torno a las patentes Lodsys debe ser una llamada de atención para todos los involucrados en el negocio de patentes (los burócratas del gobierno, legisladores, abogados, inversores, empresarios, etc.) que el sistema es totalmente inestable y no podemos seguir a seguir así .

En primer lugar, la idea de una transacción en una aplicación no es nueva. Esa idea ha sido residente en el software desde hace muchos años. El hecho de que la USPTO registró una patente sobre esta idea de “aplicación en las transacciones” es ridículo y una vergüenza.

Es importante porque los propagandistas de patentes sigue diciendo que una empresa no puede recibir de capital a menos de que tenga algunos monopolios de patentes con que excluir a sus rivales. Varios capitalistas de riesgo han destrozado esta mentira una y otra vez, lo anterior es sólo uno entre varios que hablan sobre el tema en varias ocasiones. Esto también fue publicado en Business Insider[http://www.businessinsider.com/enough-is-enough-2011-6], que añade en un artículo separado que[http://www.businessinsider.com/a-fair-and-balanced-examination-of-the-software-patent-debate-2011-6] “las patentes de software están volviendo loco a Fred Wilson” y dice Pascal-Emmanuel Gobry:

El -Fred- tiene toda la razón.

Todos nosotros sabemos los problemas con el sistema de patentes. Cualquier cosa y todo se patenta sin tener en cuenta el mérito de la idea o de a quién en realidad se le ocurrió por primera vez (en lugar de quién la presentó por primera vez). Los trolls de patentes enloquecen,chantajean sistemáticamente a empresas nuevas y a los innovadores (lo contrario de lo que el sistema de patentes se suponía que debía hacer, recompensar al pequeño). Las grandes empresas de tecnología acumular patentes como ojivas nucleares en una infinita, consumidora de recursos Guerra Fría.

Algunas personas afirman que es mejor para “reformar” el sistema de abolirlo.

Pero eso no es cierto. Por lo menos en el software, las patentes no tienen sentido.

Un gran ejemplo de una industria creativa sin las patentes es la moda. La gente se copian unos a otros todo el tiempo. Hacer casas de moda es ir a la quiebra? No. ¿A los innovadores les va a ir mal? No, van a seguir innovando a un ritmo aún más rápido.

Las compañías de software también se copian unos a otros todo el tiempo, y a los copiones por lo general no les vá bien. (Y cuando lo hacen, generalmente no sólo copian la idea, sino también es una grande ejecución no hay nada malo con los seguidores rápidos, que aportan competencia a los mercados.)

Gizmodo también acaba de publicar este artículo acerca del por qué las patentes de software no debería existir[http://gizmodo.com/5807428/should-software-patents-exist]. Para citar las primeras frases: “Se supone que las patentes deben fomentar la invención y proteger a los inventores de ser estafados. Al menos, esta fue la razón cuando las patentes se aplica a cosas como los motores de vapor y Drillbits. Pero el software? Eso podría ser una cuestión completamente distinta.”

“Las patentes fueron siempre la intención de las cosas físicas, mecanismos que hacen algo mejor de una manera que nunca habría sido evidente para otra inventores. Un verdadero salto hacia adelante. La llegada del software complicó las cosas- y la comercialización inmensa de software por parte Microsoft promovió las patentes de software a un ritmo vertiginoso.

“Cosas como un solo clic con el botón del ratón para compra en línea es un dudoso criterio de que sea un gran salto y arrojó de un gigante paquete de dinero para Amazon, quien posee la patente sobre ese botón. Si intenta usarla sin su permiso, salen sus abogados. ”

¿Cúan estúpido la USPTO desea aparecer? No representa la voluntad del pueblo, aunque podría representar la voluntad de los egoístas abogados de patentes (el sistema de patentes no fue originalmente para ellos). A este ritmo actual, hay un riesgo de colapso de la USPTO, no sólo la pérdida de apoyo público. Lamentablemente, mientras tanto los monopolios norteamericanos concedidos a empresas como Microsoft están siendo explotados y exportados a Europa CAUSANDO DEMASIADO DAñO. Una vez más hemos conseguido un nuevo documento[http://techrights.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/06/com-2011-315_en.pdf] [pdf] de la Comisión Europea, que tontamente apoya suficiente RAND (Licencias “Razonable y No-Discriminatorias”)[http://techrights.org/2009/05/29/neelie-kroes-on-microsoft-patents/]. Dice que “los derechos de propiedad intelectual son esenciales para la aplicación de las especificaciones son licenciados a los solicitantes en una base (“justa) son “razonables y no discriminatorias” ((F) RAND), que incluye, a discreción del titular del derecho de propiedad intelectual, licencias intelectuales esenciales bienes sin indemnización. “Hay algo un poco podrido en la Comisión Europea [1[http://techrights.org/2011/01/21/european-commission-disappoints-regarding-free-software-and-patents/], 2[http://techrights.org/2010/01/15/swpat-developments-in-europe/]].

Translation produced by Eduardo Landaveri, the esteemed administrator of the Spanish portal of Techrights.

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