EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS


Links 2/12/2011: WikiLeaks ‘Spy Files’, Open Internet at Risk

Posted in News Roundup at 12:15 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish



  • Should Tablets and Smartphones be Considered “PCs”?

    A new debate’s upon us! No one would argue the fact that smartphones, tablets and similar devices are “computers”, but would it be appropriate to label the same devices “PCs”? With an analyst firm doing just that recently, we’ve decided to take a look at multiple factors to see if such a classification is a good or bad thing.

  • Issue 153: Wallpaper
  • Desktop

    • Is Linux being taken seriously?

      Roll back the calendar only 5 years…

      After playing around Linux for a few months I decided to get a version installed on an old Dell Inspiration 3200 laptop so I could surf the Internet without fear. Such an old laptop didn’t have a built-in WiFi adapter, so I used a PCI Card WiFi adapter plugged into a PCI Card slot. A WiFi card that was very common but it had no Linux driver. I used the Windows driver and NDISWrapper to get the WiFi working with Linux

      In my first ½ year of experimenting with Linux (mid 2005) many basic functions were not part of the kernel (2.4) of the RedHat 7.2. I had to write scripts to mount and access my digital camera or USB FlashDrives.

      Windows NTFS support on RedHat 7.2 was non-existent. Then NTFS support in Linux became experimental. Now it’s completely transparent and build in. It “Just Works”

  • Server

    • Why Supercomputing Matters

      To your typical IT organization, the Top500 Supercomputing list released twice a year — while interesting — has little bearing on today’s operations. Grand proclamations and goals, such as reaching Exaflop performance by 2018, also have little impact on the day-to-day goings-on in most data centers. (As quick background info: A FLOP is the number of FLoating Point Operations performed Per Second; an Exaflop is 1018 or 1,000,000,000,000,000,000 FLOPs.)

  • Kernel Space

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • GNOME Desktop

      • Gtk heading for a bumpy time in mobile space?

        In an effort to slim down and improve its cross-platform capabilities, the developers of the Chrome browser and ChromeOS itself appear to be shifting away from Gtk use.

        This bit of information was quietly pointed out earlier in the month on the Aura window manager pages for the Chromium Projects. Chromium is the open source implementation of Chrome and ChromeOS, and Aura is the new window manager and shell environment that will support the various interface elements on these implementations.

  • Distributions

    • The end of the Linux distro wars

      Don’t use DistroWatch as a measuring stick in any way for the popularity of a Linux distribution.

      Seriously, stop it.

      In fact, why are we even asking the question at all?

      “Popularity” is a term that smacks of our days in high school, when we thought we should care about social standing and where we fit in that ranking. Now apparently, we seem to be locked into this notion of figuring out which distro is most popular, too.

      This is a silly question, for multiple reasons.

    • Distro Dance
    • New Releases

      • VectorLinux 7.0 Screenshot Tour
      • Vector Linux 7.0 GOLD Released

        With all the excitement and discussion surrounding the recent release of Linux Mint 12 (and Fedora 16, and openSuSE 12.1), it is easy to overlook the smaller Linux distributions. Vector Linux is a good example of this, with their recently announced 7.0 distribution. The relatively small number people behind the Vector Linux distribution have put a phenomenal amount of work into this release – I saw the first VL7.0 Beta releases early this year, and there have been several Release Candidates since about May or June. The result of all that hard work is what I consider to be one of the nicest of the Slackware-based “easy-to-use” Linux distributions.

    • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandrake/Mandriva Family

      • Mandriva Introduces New Media Player

        Today Denis Koryavov, lead interface developer at ROSA Labs, announced a new media player for ROSA/Mandriva. ROSA Media Player (ROMP) is a fork of MPlayer and SMPlayer with a sleek design and new features. Today a beta of 1.0 was made available to test and Koryavov says it’s stable.

    • Gentoo Family

      • Sabayon 7 KDE review

        Aside from a few applications failing to start before updates were applied, another issues I observed with Sabayon 7 KDE is that a connected printer was not automatically configured, even though cupsd, the printer daemon, is started out of the box. In Pardus, a KDE-based distribution that made the list of the top 6 KDE distributions for 2011, any connected printer in the printers database is automatically configured.

    • Red Hat Family

      • Sorting out Red Hat Linux based distributions

        Recently it was published by DistroWatch that the Linux Mint distribution has passed Ubuntu and is now considered the most popular. In order from most popular on down, this list at DistroWatch starts with Linux Mint, followed by Ubuntu, Fedora, Debian, and openSUSE. There are others listed as well.

        But I wanted to take a moment and touch on Fedora and the Red Hat based distributions to distinguish the differences among them. I am a huge fan of the Red Hat based distributions. Why? Well, I’ve used them since the early days of Linux distributions, and have been hooked ever since. I’ve had excellent luck with Red Hat, I like the tools that Red Hat develops and places in their distributions, and there is a huge support community for it. I’ve also found that Red Hat is a good company, and stands behind its products. It has been VERY supportive and active in the open source community for decades, and continues to show its commitment to open source software. I also think their software models are highly successful, with the Fedora / Red Hat split that we saw in 2003. Back then I was surprised with the split at first, but after a couple of years using both Fedora and Red Hat Linux, I soon discovered that the move to split the two was ingenious. I will explain why below.

      • Red Hat’s sales architect exits on Linux high

        At a company that values engineers as highly as Red Hat does, Pinchev still commands profound respect, not to mention fear, despite not being able to write a line of code. Over the last nine years, Pinchev’s relentless, dogged determination to increase sales has paid for huge contributions to the Linux kernel and open-source software, generally.

      • Fedora

        • PreUpgrade: Upgrade Fedora From One Version To Another

          If you are a Fedora using running Fedora 15 or even Fedora 14 and want to upgrade to the latest, and the greatest, version of Fedora, you can easily do that using PreUpgrade. The goal of PreUpgrade is to provide a way for Fedora users who wish to upgrade from one release to a newer version of Fedora by easily pre-resolving and downloading all the necessary packages before rebooting the system into the Fedora installer to complete the update.

        • Distro Hoppin`: Fedora 16

          Another interesting addition inside the context menu is the “Restore Missing Files” option, which lets you connect to an on-site or cloud server to recover from accidental deletions.

    • Debian Family

      • Derivatives

        • CrunchBang 10 “Statler” refresh R20111125

          Although officially a version 10 refresh and still under the “Statler” moniker, the latest Crunchbang release constitutes some notable changes.

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • My Unity TV Mockups

            Inspired my Mark Shuttleworth’s recent post about Alan Bell’s Unity TV mockups, I’ve decided to try my hand at some. Alan did his using Pencil, which is an awesome tool for UI mockups that I wrote about previously, so it was easy enough for me to get started. Here is my first one, a mockup where just the Launcher and Unity panel are showing (no Dash):

          • Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter Issue 243
          • Is Ubuntu Still The Most Popular Linux Distro?

            For the past few years, Ubuntu has been considered the most popular Linux distribution. Recently, there has been a flurry of blog posts claiming that Linux Mint is now more popular than Ubuntu. While Linux Mint seems to have gained greatly in popularity since the first release in 2006, all meaningful statistics (if there is such a thing) point to Ubuntu’s clear lead in usage and popularity.

          • Beautiful Icons for Your Favorite Ubuntu Games
          • Ubuntu Linux Everywhere

            In his own words: “By 14.04 LTS Ubuntu will power tablets, phones, TVs and smart screens from the car to the office kitchen, and it will connect those devices cleanly and seamlessly to the desktop, the server and the cloud.”

          • Apache CouchDB developers respond to UbuntuOne issue

            Jan Lehnardt, Chairman of the Apache CouchDB Project Management Committee (PMC), writing on behalf of the CouchDB developers, shed some light on why Canonical dropped its use of the CouchDB NoSQL database from the cloud synchronisation service Ubuntu One. The announcement by Canonical had created some uncertainty about CouchDB and its capabilities. The message from the developers is “Do not worry, the project is alive and well” said Lehnardt.

          • Ubuntu’s Precise Pangolin Alpha 1 Released
          • Get an Early Peek at Ubuntu Linux 12.04 ‘Precise Pangolin’
          • Gnome 3 Whips Ubuntu Unity, Launches Shell Extensions Site

            The Gnome project has dropped a bomb today by announcing a site for Gnome 3 Shell extensions. The site is in alpha stage and brings the much needed extensions for Gnome 3 Shell under one site.

          • Flavours and Variants

            • 8 Exciting Features of Linux Mint 12 “Lisa”

              Linux Mint, which has effortlessly managed to usurp the top spot from Ubuntu (according to DistroWatch ranking), has just released its latest version. Codenamed “Lisa”, Linux Mint 12 is based on Ubuntu 11.10 and features a perfect blend of GNOME 3 and the newly designed Mint GNOME Shell Extensions (MGSE).

            • Ubuntu Declines, Linux Mint Soars: DistroWatch Figures

              Linux Mint appears to be soaring in popularity at the expense of high-profile distros such as Ubuntu, figures from DistroWatch have suggested. The site’s latest page hit numbers show a sharp decline in the last month for Ubuntu, which having occupied second spot throughout year has now dropped to fourth place, behind even Fedora, openSUSE and top performer, Mint.

Free Software/Open Source

  • Is Apache still good for open source?

    The Apache Software Foundation has been making life better for open-source developers since 1999, but has its time passed?

    A recent blog argues that nonprofit ASF is causing more harm than good by being mired in the past.

    “It is my belief that we are, right now, in the middle of a very large evolution in the ecology of open source,” wrote Mikeal Rogers, a developer advocate at Yammer, a private, secure social network for companies. Yet Apache remains focused on problems that no longer exist — removing barriers to entry — creating a “chasm between Apache and the new culture of open source,” he said.

  • Events

    • Make it so, SCALE

      A little history: Mimi Cafiero (yes, that’s my girl) and Malakai Wade, two teenage girls who are helping to organize SCALE 10X’s young people’s conference, staunchly proclaimed that, “We are not kids.” So the title of SCALE 10X Kids Conference was in peril from the start.

  • CMS

    • WordPress the most popular open source CMS for second year running

      According to the fourth annual study by water&stone, WordPress, Joomla and Drupal are the three most popular among 20 free web content management systems, narrowed down from an initial list of 35. WordPress is in the lead by a long way, followed by Joomla. Having lead the field two years ago and been overtaken by WordPress last year, it is natable how Joomla’s popularity has declined since last year. Among the .NET-based CMS players, DotNetNuke dominates, while among Java-based CMSes, Liferay and Alfresco are the joint leaders.

    • Drupal, Cajun Style

      As I wrote earlier this week, few markets have such a rich selection of quality open source products as does the content management systems (CMS) space. One of the leaders in the open source CMS market is Drupal. In fact this blog post is written on a Drupal system. Down in the Big Easy on December 8th and 9th there will be a Drupal conference called Drupal on the Bayou.

  • Public Services/Government

    • IT: Sicily to consider law promoting the use of open source

      The regional administration of the Italian island of Sicily is to consider a law nudging public administrations to use of free and open source software. The proposal, by Massimo Ferrara, a member of the Democratic Party, might also help prevent the break-up of a school on the island, the Instituto Majorana, involved in producing instruction videos on this type of software.


  • Cablegate

    • New WikiLeaks ‘spy files’ show global surveillance industry

      WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange launched the website’s new project Thursday, the publication of files it claims shows a global industry that gives dictatorships tools to spy on their citizens.

      In parallel to Assange’s announcement, Wikileaks’ partner Owni.fr released evidence that a French firm helped Moamer Kadhafi’s former Libyan regime spy on opposition figures living in exile in Britain.

      It had already been revealed that the electronics firm, Amesys, had worked with the Libyan regime — and French rights groups are attempting to take the group to court — but Owni’s files will prove embarrassing.

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • Pro-Walker Ads, Courtesy of Koch Industries

      The Koch-funded Americans for Prosperity (AFP) has teamed up with Wisconsin’s right-wing John K. MacIver Institute on a website and TV ad to support Governor Scott Walker as he faces recall. AFP and MacIver are aiming to convince residents that Walker’s fiscal policies have been good for the state.

    • New Report Details ALEC Influence in Arizona

      Last year, the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) attracted attention when reporters revealed Arizona’s SB1070 anti-immigration law was pre-approved by ALEC corporations that stood to benefit from its passage. As ALEC’s legislative and corporate members descend upon Arizona for meetings this week, a new report (pdf) shows that ALEC’s influence in Arizona goes beyond SB1070 to include bills that suppress voting, attack worker’s rights, privatize public education, and limit environmental protections.

  • Censorship

    • US judge orders hundreds of sites “de-indexed” from Google, Facebook

      After a series of one-sided hearings, luxury goods maker Chanel has won recent court orders against hundreds of websites trafficking in counterfeit luxury goods. A federal judge in Nevada has agreed that Chanel can seize the domain names in question and transfer them all to US-based registrar GoDaddy. The judge also ordered “all Internet search engines” and “all social media websites”—explicitly naming Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Bing, Yahoo, and Google—to “de-index” the domain names and to remove them from any search results.

  • Civil Rights

    • So, there’s a rootkit hidden in millions of cellphones

      The rootkit belongs to a company called Carrier IQ and it seems that it has low-level access to the system that allows it to spy on pretty much everything that you do with your handset. This, on the face of it, seems like an extremely serious breach of security, privacy and trust.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality

    • Piracy vs. an open Internet

      To avoid the reach of U.S. copyright laws, numerous online pirates have set up shop in countries less willing or able to enforce intellectual property rights. Policymakers agree that these “rogue” sites pose a real problem for U.S. artists and rights holders who aren’t getting paid for the rampant distribution of their music, movies and other creative works. The question is how to help them. Lawmakers keep offering proposals, but they don’t seem to be getting any closer to the right answer.

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

What Else is New

  1. Even the EPO Central Staff Committee is Unhappy With EPO Management

    The questions asked by the Central Staff Committee shared for the public to see that not only a single union is concerned about the management's behaviour

  2. The Broken Window Economics of Patent Trolls Are Already Coming to Europe

    The plague which is widely known as patent trolls (non-practicing entities that prey on practicing companies) is being spread to Europe, owing in part to misguided policies and patent maximalists

  3. Debunking the EPO's Latest Marketing Nonsense From Les Échos and More on Benoît Battistelli's Nastygram to French Politician

    Our detailed remarks about French brainwash from the EPO's media partner (with Benoît Battistelli extensively quoted) and the concerns increasingly raised by French politicians, who urge for national or even continental intervention

  4. The Sun King Delusion: The Views of Techrights Are Just a Mirror of EPO Staff Unions

    Tackling some emerging spin we have seen coming from Battistelli's private letters -- spin which strives to project the views of Techrights onto staff unions and why it's very hypocritical a form of spin

  5. Links /11/2015: Webconverger 33.1, Netrunner 17 Released

    Links for the day

  6. United They Stand: FFPE-EPO Supports Suspended Staff Representatives From SUEPO

    An obscure union from the Dutch side of things at the EPO is expressing support for the suspended colleagues from SUEPO (more German than Dutch)

  7. Censoring WIPR Article About Censorship by EPO

    A testament to how terrified journalists have become when it comes to EPO coverage, to the point of deleting entire paragraphs

  8. Censorship at the EPO Escalates: Now We Have Threats to Sue Publishers

    Having already blocked Techrights, the EPO's management proceeds to further suppressions of speech, impeding its staff's access to independently-distributed information (neither ordinary staff nor management)

  9. Response to Bogus Accusations That EPO Staff Protests Are Really an Attempt to Derail UPC

    Common myths about staff protests in the European Patent Office (EPO) debunked, with some additional background and general perspective on recent events, the unitary patent (UPC) and so on

  10. New Heise Article Makes It Clear That 'Nazi'-Themed Accusations Against the Suspended Board Judge Were Insufficiently Substantiated

    The personal attacks on a judge who was illegally suspended (a so-called 'house ban') increasingly look like the management's own campaign of defamation, mostly intended to marginalise and punish a judge who spoke about serious charges against VP4 (Željko Topić)

  11. Links 24/11/2015: Asus Chromebit CS10, Second Linux 4.4 RC

    Links for the day

  12. European Central Bank Staff Committee Adds to Growing Pressure on Abusive EPO Management

    The staff representatives of the European Central Bank E-mail their colleagues -- with European Central Bank managers' approval -- regarding the European Patent Office and its attacks on staff unions

  13. Gross Violation of Workers' Rights in EPO: Denial of Christmas Vacation/Leave for Slower Workers

    A look at an E-mail from within the EPO which shows how Christmas is used to squeeze staff, urging them to work even faster (despite speed gains) or lose their Christmas leave

  14. The Bogus Narrative Floated by EPO Management: Our Judges and Examiners Are Armed and Violent

    A look at the union-busting and protest-crushing moves from high-level EPO managers, who are trying to convince politicians that they do so in an effort to stop terrorists and neo-Nazis

  15. Support SUEPO or End Up Like They and Some of the Boards Did

    SUEPO, the fast-growing staff union of the EPO, increasingly needs the support and protection offered by action and participation from staff

  16. NRC Handelsblad (Dutch Evening Newspaper) Speaks About EPO's Refusal to Accept Court Orders From The Hague

    Article explains the depths of the issues inside the EPO and the unacceptable immunity that management at the EPO continues to exploit, shaming or discrediting the very notion of the rule of law in Europe

  17. HeBS Digital and Black Duck Press Releases Treated Like Articles, Used to Muddy the FOSS Waters

    Free/Open Source software (FOSS) is under attack again, and it's the proprietary software lobby that's responsible for that

  18. EPO President Battistelli Now Intimidates Even National Delegations

    Report about an embarrassing incident implicating Benoît Battistelli and some angry comments cast over the witch-hunting of a judge, using all sorts of questionable tactics

  19. A Look at the Latest Gross Deletionism at the EPO's 'Media Partner', French Newspaper Les Échos

    The EPO's bogus 'journal of record, which Team Battistelli likes to cite in order to bolster its warped version of events at the EPO while maintaining a close secret relationship with the publisher, keeps censoring its own reporters (spiked paragraphs, silently self-censored or censored after publications)

  20. Rumour About Efforts to Dismiss a Board Judge by Intimidating Boards of Appeal

    Comment found online accuses the Administrative Council of pressuring, by threats, Directorate-General 3 to dismiss a judge who is silently accused (with selective 'leaks' to the media, reportedly orchestrated by EPO managers) but not even proven guilty

  21. President Battistelli Now Pressures/Threatens Politicians Who 'Dare' to Complain About Abuses and Unacceptable Conditions at the EPO

    Pierre-Yves Le Borgn’, a French politician, unleashes an angry letter from Benoît Battistelli and reveals just to what lengths the EPO's Team Battistelli is willing to go in order to crush political backlash

  22. EPO: It's Like a Family Business - Part IV

    Some more background information about Elodie Bergot and Gilles Requena, who are married whilst also sharing positions of power at the EPO (and also strong connections/ties with the EPO's President, Mr. Battistelli); Rumours afloat at the EPO -- some with ever-increasing circulation too -- are worth noting

  23. Translation of Thomas Magenheim-Hörmann's Article in the German Media, Urging European Politicians to Intervene in EPO Chaos and Lawlessness

    Frankfurt-based media presents an opinion piece written by a Munich-based economic correspondent, Thomas Magenheim-Hörmann

  24. German Press Says Broken EPO Lets President Severely Punish Staff Not Even Guilty of Any Wrongdoing

    Juve publishes an article which attempts to be 'balanced' (meaning it believes everything that EPO officials say) but at the same time reveals unacceptable practices that go in inside the EPO

  25. German Media Reveals That Out-of-Control EPO Management is Even Threatening and Abusing Lawyers Now

    The EPO's longstanding fight against justice escalates to an unprecedented war on lawyers themselves; “After this latest move,” says a German newspaper, “even lawyers are starting to feel threatened by the Office.”

  26. Washington Post Only Entertains Debate About Patent Trolls (But Not Patent Scope) Whilst US Lawyers Trick the System to Patent Software

    The Bezos-owned Washington Post continues to help those who wish to eliminate patent trolls (which bother Amazon amongst other large conglomerates) but remains void of any coverage about patent scope, including software patents that patent lawyers work so hard to defend

  27. It Pays (Off) to 'Bribe' the Media: Watch How Les Échos Covers EPO Matters and Self-Censors

    French newspaper Les Échos is self-censoring yet again and it is framing the EPO scandals as the fault of employees, not the fault of abusive managers who are working with Les Échos as a so-called 'media partner' (the EPO management is French-dominated)

  28. 'Leaked' PDF Shows How EPO Management Tried to Crush Judge Who 'Dared' to Criticise EPO Management

    The EPO's management continues to chill potential critics and is now making an example of a board's judge, despite having no such authority over him

  29. Links 21/11/2015: Community Appreciation Day, Jolla's Problems

    Links for the day

  30. EPO: It's Like a Family Business - Part III

    A look at how the EPO's management (Željko Topić in particular) defended the unprecedented promotion of Ms Bergot (wife of the president's close assistant), even in the face of outcry from EPO staffwarning


RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time


Recent Posts