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01.19.12

Links 19/1/2012: OpenNebula 3.2, Rhythmbox 2.95

Posted in News Roundup at 9:02 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Sony Reader and Linux

    I read a lot while travelling. So, to lighten my load, my wife gave me a Sony Reader for Christmas. I knew that it ranks tolerably well on the Electronic Frontier Foundation’s Guide to E-book Privacy, and it was reputed to work with Linux. And it does, but it takes some figuring out.

    The Sony Reader connects to the PC through a standard USB cable. The first time I tried to connect reader, it wasn’t automatically detected. I don’t know why; perhaps I did things in the wrong sequence. I had to manually mount the devices. Yes, devices. The Reader appeared in my device list as three devices. Two are the reader, I think the third is for the add-in memory card (which I don’t have inserted).

  • Linux should be like a window

    In the nascent surge of mobile convergence, we now have a choice of four major desktops for Linux: GNOME 3, Ubuntu Unity, KDE 4 and Linux Mint’s Cinnamon. There are huge, complex and mind-numbingly technical advances in all of this technology. But all I want is for my window still to work the way I want.

  • Big Business, Big Linux

    According to new report by The Linux Foundation, the nonprofit organization dedicated to accelerating the growth of Linux, “Linux Adoption Trends 2012: A Survey of Enterprise End Users,” in a lousy IT economy Linux is still growing by leaps and bounds.

    How fast it is growing? The report states, “Eighty-four percent of respondents report that their organizations have expanded Linux usage in the last 12 months, with 82% planning on continuing that expansion into the year ahead. The 5-year outlook indicates an even longer-term commitment to the platform among 79.8% of Linux users surveyed, who say the use of Linux in their company or organization will increase relative to other operating systems during this time period.”

  • Linux Adopton Trends 2012: A Closer Look

    These names represent just a handful of the thousands of large companies using Linux today. As early adopters of Linux (some having used the OS well over a decade) with some of the most technically advanced challenges to overcome in their business environments, companies such as these can give us important insight as to how Linux is being used and where it’s growing.

    That is why we started surveying large companies using Linux in 2010 and why today’s new report, “Linux Adoption Trends 2012: A Survey of Enterprise End Users,” sheds light on what we can expect from enterprises, both large and small, that are using Linux. We hope this research can help inform the industry, our members and us as we prioritize our work for a New Year.

  • Desktop

    • Is the Linux Desktop actually growing?

      I use a Linux desktop. According to Google Analytics, 12% of the visitors to my various technology Web sites use Linux. Nevertheless, I know that on the traditional desktop, the vast majority of ordinary users are running Windows, and don’t even get me started on “The Year of the Linux Desktop.” It’s not going to happen. But, and this is interesting, it appears that there is a slight upward trend in desktop Linux use.

    • Infographic: Linux lovers love big data

      For anyone thinking the big data trend is a flash in the pan, there’s some new evidence to the contrary. A hefty 75 percent of IT pros and developers responding to a new Linux Foundation survey have their eyes firmly on this big data phenomenon.

    • Linux Adoption Grows on Big Data, Cloud, Virtualization: Survey

      A new Linux Foundation survey on enterprise adoption of Linux indicates that growth in Linux usage is being driven by factors such as big data, cloud computing and virtualization, among others.

  • Server

    • Report: Open Source Application Servers Are More Prevalent Than You Think

      According to research from app monitoring firm New Relic, open source Java application servers own a serious chunk of overall application server usage. In fact, InfoWorld notes that New Relic’s data illustrates that the open source solutions are hindering commercial software alternatives. New Relic surveyed a series of enterprises regarding their Java application servers, with respondents ranging from big businesses to online merchants. Here are the numbers the survey turned up.

    • Linux gains share on enterprise servers — and desktops, too

      Linux has vaulted to 1.4 percent worldwide desktop market share from 0.97 percent in July, according to Net Applications. Meanwhile, a new Linux Foundation survey on enterprise adoption of Linux indicates that 84 percent of organizations currently using the open source operating system have expanded their deployments over the last year. Meanwhile,

  • Audiocasts/Shows

  • Kernel Space

    • Intel NVM Express Driver For Linux 3.3 Kernel

      Linus Torvalds has been called upon to pull the NVM Express driver into the Linux 3.3 mainline kernel.

      The NVM Express driver has been around for the better part of the year now since the specification was announced, but it looks now like it’s finally ready to enter the mainline Linux 3.3 kernel.

    • Linux Foundation Expects More Enterprise Gains in 2012

      The Linux Foundation is sharing the results of their latest invitation-only survey of enterprise Linux users. Their last such survey, in August 2010, revealed Linux was gaining popularity in enterprise computing. It should come as no real surprise that the latest survey shows more of the same.

      A lot has happened since late 2010, and the Linux Foundation survey reflects that. In “Linux Adoption Trends 2012: A Survey of Enterprise End Users” we find that a substantial number of enterprise users “expressed concern with the rapid growth of data, and Linux is clearly the platform of choice to address it.” Less than half of respondents are planning to use Windows to handle their “Big Data” requirements.

    • The Linux Foundation Releases Enterprise Linux User Report

      World’s largest enterprises will add more Linux to support cloud computing, “Big Data” – all at the expense of Windows and Unix

      SAN FRANCISCO, January 19, 2012 – The Linux Foundation, the nonprofit organization dedicated to accelerating the growth of Linux, today announced the immediate release of its latest report “Linux Adoption Trends 2012: A Survey of Enterprise End Users,” which shares new data representing Linux’s dominant role in supporting cloud computing, “Big Data” and new, “greenfield” deployments.

    • Graphics Stack

      • An Easy But Serious Screensaver Security Problem In X.Org

        I’ve been alerted this afternoon that there’s an outstanding security vulnerability within the current X.Org Server that’s receiving little attention. This active vulnerability could allow anyone with physical access to your system to easily bypass the desktop’s screen lock regardless of your desktop environment.

      • Wayland Action Items You Can Start On

        Tiago Vignatti, one of the active developers at Intel who’s dedicated to the Wayland team, has shared some active TODO list items that for those wishing to contribute can easily jump on.

        Vignatti wrote a post on his personal blog entitled starting on Wayland development. Tiago shares that while the Wayland protocol is not yet complete, there’s a number of items on their growing TODO list that could be accomplished by new contributors even without much graphics or X.Org/Wayland experience.

      • Radeon Gallium3D: A Half-Decade Behind Catalyst?

        What happens when you pull out some vintage computer hardware and run the latest Linux software as well as go back and run some of the oldest software available? Well, in the case of systems with antiquated R300-era ATI Radeon graphics, you are left with a downward slope in performance. Not only is the latest open-source Radeon graphics driver not always performing as well as an ancient Catalyst driver, but also the power consumption of the latest Linux code remains on an incline.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC)

      • Plasma QML documentation

        Just a brief heads up. As you know, from now on the recomended way to write plasmoids will be using QML only, and using the new components api for common widgets such as buttons, sliders etc.

        What’s cool about this API is that is as compatible as possible with Symbian and Harmattan(N9/N950), so porting to and from those platforms just became a tad easier (That’s especially important in the perspective of Plasma Active).

      • KDE Plasma Desktop Activities

        The idea of activities have only recently been introduced with the release of KDE 4. The KDE desktop is set up so all virtual desktops use the same activity and look the same, but this can be changed. Widgets will appear on all workspaces, along with icons, panels and other items. You can use activities to create a completely different work environment on each workspace. Each activity can even have its own name and function, this is great if you prefer to separate your work and play. You can use activities to add a different desktop wallpaper for each workspace, or to separate your widgets based on function.

      • Digia’s Qt Commercial Still Carrying Large Patch Delta

        In 2011 when talking about Digia putting out new Qt Commercial releases with over one hundred changes compared to what’s found in the open-source/community Qt repository, many Phoronix readers were upset by this large delta. Digia is still putting out new Qt Commercial releases that carry large differences to the upstream open-source releases, but they’ve offered up the patches for mainline integration.

    • GNOME Desktop

      • GNOME Shell 3.2.2 Released

        Owen Taylor announced last night, January 18th, the immediate availability for download and upgrade of the GNOME Shell 3.2.2 user interface for the GNOME 3 desktop environment.

        GNOME Shell 3.2.2 is a maintenance release and it comes with over 15 changes, as well as lots of updated translations.

  • Distributions

    • Red Hat Family

      • Red Hat guns for VMware with RHEV 3.0

        Red Hat has built a $1bn company, more or less, predicated on the idea that open source Linux is cheaper than Windows or Unix and that open source Java application servers are cheaper than commercial alternatives like WebLogic and WebSphere.

        For two years now, Red Hat has been trying to convince the world that it has a chance to take on x86 server virtualization juggernaut VMware, to little avail. But with the advent of Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization 3.0, and a future upgrade planned later this year, Red Hat has a much better chance of denting VMware.

      • Red Hat slams Web legislation

        Open source software-maker Red Hat took to its blog Wednesday to speak out against controversial legislation meant to prevent online piracy.

        Red Hat and other critics of the Stop Online Piracy and the Protect IP acts, known as SOPA and PIPA, claim that the legislation would censor the Internet and throttleinnovative American businesses.

      • Red Hat Turns to Linux for Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization 3
      • CloudLinux Announces Support for Atomia

        “Now, Atomia customers can easily upgrade their operating system to CloudLinux OS greatly enhancing the security and efficiency of their shared hosting businesses,” said Igor Seletskiy, CloudLinux CEO. “Better control over computing resources leads to a better overall customer experience and results in lower churn.”

      • Red Hat EV3 launches with all-Linux stack

        Announced on Wednesday, RHEV3 adds a self-service portal for provisioning virtual machines, access via RESTful API, the ability to store data locally on client machines and, via integration with the company’s private cloud management product CloudForms, a limited ability to manage hypervisors from other vendors.

      • Red Hat releases third version of its Enterprise Virtualisation platform

        As before, the RHEV hypervisor, which is only a few hundred megabytes in size, virtualises using KVM (Kernel-based Virtual Machine) and integrates many RHEL core components – however, the new RHEV uses components from the current RHEL version 6.2 rather than RHEL series 5. Consequently, the new RHEV-V offers many improvements that have been available in RHEL 6 for some time – for example, guest systems can now access up to 64 virtual CPU cores and up to 2 TB of working memory. Technologies such as vhost-net, Transparent Huge Pages (THP), x2apic and KSM (Kernel Shared Memory) are designed to improve performance and increase efficiency.

      • Fedora

        • Thinkfan for Fedora Share/Bookmark

          Here it is the first release of Thinkfan, a simple and lightweight fan control program, for Fedora. As a thinkpad user so it’s obvious what my interest is, but developer assures now can manage other computers fan too.

    • Debian Family

      • All Hail Debian, King of the Web Server World

        “For all the grief people have given Debian over time for how ‘outdated’ the packages in Debian stable have been, Debian is certainly my choice for any type of Linux-based server,” said Hyperlogos blogger Martin Espinoza. “I flirted with Ubuntu Server for a while, but Ubuntu suffers from an excess of dependencies.”

      • Derivatives

        • m23 12.1 rock is available!

          The new year has only just begun – and already, a new m23 version with many new features and (of course) some corrections is available! Among the highlights, you will find the “m23 remote administration service”, the reactivation of openSUSE and Debian Lenny, the migration to new mirrors, support for arbitrary file systems and extended package manager settings (e.g. LibreOffice from Debian backports) in the package sources lists and a Java applet for accessing the “m23 VirtualBox OSE Console” directly from the m23 interface.

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Do Fewer Spinoffs Signal a Waning in Ubuntu’s Popularity?

            Even if you don’t run Linux, chances are good you’ve heard of Ubuntu. You’re probably also familiar with its official cousins: Kubuntu, Xubuntu and the like. But there’s another subset of the Ubuntu ecosystem that gets less play — namely, the medley of unofficial spinoffs built by third parties. Although little discussed, the trends surrounding these distributions that hide in Ubuntu’s shadow reveal a lot about the open source channel more broadly.

            According to DistroWatch, there are 118 Linux distributions based on Ubuntu. These include both the official variants like Kubuntu and a wide range of lesser known spins created by community members. It’s this latter group, comprised mostly of operating systems that are not so well-known, that I’m interested in here.

          • School Leverages Sun Hardware, Switches to LTSP Thin Clients

            The School of Computer Science at the University of Windsor deployed their first network of diskless thin clients in August of 1987. Since then, the CS school has progressed through three operating systems, four thin client devices, and seven Sun server configurations. In the summer of 2011, UWindsor switched from Solaris and Sun Ray clients to Ubuntu and LTSP Thin Clients.

          • Flavours and Variants

            • Meet Bodhi’s Bulky Brother: Bloathi

              If Bodhi Linux was a little too minimal, then perhaps Bodhi’s beefy brother Bloathi Linux will fill the bill. Jeff Hoogland posted today of a new community spin of Bodhi that comes with ” a slew of pre-installed software.”

              Bloathi retains the Enlightenment desktop environment and comes with lots of themes and several hardware profiles. These are setup upon reaching the desktop through a pop-up configuration. The hard drive installer icon normally found on the desktop doesn’t show up in a lot of themes, so check in the file manager under Desktop.

            • Step-by-Step Vinux 3.2.1 Install Guide
            • Bloathi Linux

              Bodhi Linux is mainly built around two things – the Enlightenment desktop and a minimalistic approach to software. Even with these goals stated we still have users (and review writers) that complain about the lack of pre-installed software Bodhi comes with by default.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Welcome to the world of open source domotics

      Ubuntu on your TV and Android running your refrigerator. Glyn Moody looks at some of the developments announced at the recent Consumer Electronic Show and explains how Linux is the natural choice for intelligent appliances.

    • Phones

      • Android

        • Why Android might just kill GNU/Linux. Quickly.

          I write this article exactly 24 hours after receiving my Galaxy Tab 10.1. It’s something I’ve been wanting for a long time. I had to wait for the dispute between Apple and Samsung to settle (Samsung actually lost on millions of dollars worth of sales thanks to software patents, but that’s another story). After all that, I came to the realisation that we are in front of a forking path. On one side there is the death of GNU/Linux as we know it. On the other side, there is a new exciting world where free software is still relevant. I am not writing this just to be “sensational”: here is why.

        • Epic 4G and Epic 4G Touch have new kernel source available, look for OTAs soon

          Both the Samsung Epic 4G and the Samsung Epic 4G Touch have new kernel source up at Samsung’s open source portal. The Original Epic 4G has the kernel and other open-source bits for update version EL30 ready to download, and the Epic 4G Touch has the same for version EL29.

        • Google gets $3.65 billion in annual Android ad revenue, Oracle claims

          Oracle is claiming Google makes $3.65 billion a year in mobile advertising from Android, basing its estimate on Google’s own boast of 700,000 daily activations for Android devices. Oracle made the new claim to encourage a favorable settlement in its lawsuit against Google, which is finally scheduled to go to trial in March.

        • Motorola Opens Pre-Order for Wi-Fi only XYBoard
        • Focus Group Reveals Casio 4G LTE Quad-core Phone, Clam Shell Devices, and New Phone Protection Tech

          A reader of DL was fortunate enough to spend some time in a focus group within the last couple of days and came away with a spec list for a Casio phone that may actually interest some of you. There were other devices on display including a set of clam shells, but we will get to those in a minute. Remember, that our reader is going off of pure memory here, as focus groups almost never allow you to bring in a phone (for obvious reasons). He also mentioned that most of the phones were headed to Verizon.

    • Sub-notebooks/Tablets

      • Cheap Tabloid Tricks: The Truth About Linux, Open Source And The Media

        Linux and open source technology should be a good news story for everyone. However, the way these topics are presented in the media often leaves enthusiasts unhappy. There is a widespread belief that open source alternatives are neglected in favour of commercial products; that coverage often distorts the facts and exaggerates conflict rather than offering insight; and that the right-wing bias of much Australian media dooms the open source community to being dismissed as a kook minority led by some cult figure from Scandinavia whose name no-one can pronounce. The reality is more complex, as reality usually is.

      • Each Kindle Fire generating more than $100 in additional revenue for Amazon

Free Software/Open Source

  • 92 Open Source Apps That Replace Everyday Software
  • Where are they now?

    Years ago, the short-lived Maximum Linux magazine ran a graphic showing Eric Raymond, Richard Stallman, and Linus Torvalds wearing the gang colors of open source. Naturally, Stallman protested in the next issue that he was an advocate of free software, not open source, but the point is that, back then, it was easy to point out the leaders of free and open source software (FOSS) in a way that would be impossible today. And I can’t help thinking that’s a healthy sign.

    I was reminded of how much things have changed when I read about Bruce Perens’ keynote at linux.conf.au this week. If the Maximum Linux graphic had added a fourth or fifth figure, that figure would probably have Perens. But now? Although I was peripherally aware of him giving the occasional talk, his influence had faded. I doubt that many newcomers to the community would be even aware of his involvement in the early days of FOSS).

  • Making the most of open-source software

    THE digital industry has gone through a big change in the last couple of years. Funding used to stretch high and wide which meant there was a lot of money available for software projects.

    Two years down the line and the game has changed completely – companies now have to be more sensible about how they use their resources to avoid passing their costs on to clients.

    One of the largest non-productive costs to a web development agency is the cost of their bespoke content management system (CMS).

  • Open source software vendors turn eyes to channel

    Open source software vendors 10gen and Talend have both turned their attention to the channel this week, announcing their intentions to start recruiting resellers in the UK as part of a strategy to up their growth rates and find new ways to generate cashflow from communities of non-paying users.

    10gen is behind a database package called MongoDB, which has found a ready audience among internet firms that need to take a mroe flexible approach to their data management. It counts social start-ups including Foursquare and Craigslist among its customers and claims to have around 100,000 downloads a month as a free product

  • Ada Initiative To Help Women In Open Technology And Culture
  • Why SOPA and PIPA are bad for open source

    The widespread internet blackout yesterday in protest at unbalanced legislation being rushed through the US Congress was dramatic and notable. I did have some questions though on why it was important to the open source community. The way the laws have been framed by their proponents makes them look as if they are all about file sharing and specifically music and video sharing. However, the problem with them is they create badly-bounded new powers that are likely to exploited in ways that fall outside the frame.

  • Events

  • Web Browsers

    • Epiphany 3.3.4 Released With New Menu And Toolbar, More

      Epiphany 3.3.4 has been released today with many user interface changes which bring it closer to the mockups we’ve seen about a month ago.

      The new version features a much cleaner, unified user interface that’s optimized to offer the user as much vertical space as possible. The old-style menu and statusbar have been removed, being replaced with a menu integrated into the top GNOME Shell bar (that will be used by the whole GNOME application stack: Music, Documents, etc.), a new “super menu” and a Nautilus-like floating statusbar.

    • Mozilla

      • Mozilla demos MediaStream Processing, audio mixing in Firefox

        Mozilla is drafting a proposal for a new Web standard called MediaStream Processing that introduces JavaScript APIs for manipulating audio and video streams in real time. The specification is still at an early stage of development, but Mozilla has already started working on an implementation for testing purposes.

        Mozilla’s Robert O’Callahan, the author of the MediaStream Processing API proposal draft, released experimental Firefox builds that include MediaStream Processing support. He has also published a set of demos (note: you need to run the experimental build to see the demos) that illustrate some of the functionality defined by the specification.

  • SaaS

    • OpenNebula Releases OpenNebula 3.2 for Data Center Virtualization and Private Cloud Computing

      The OpenNebula Project is proud to announce the release of a new stable version of its widely deployed open-source management platform for enterprise data center virtualization. OpenNebula3.2 is the first stable distribution produced by OpenNebula’s new release cycle aimed at faster delivery of new features and innovations to the community, based on their requirements and feedback, while also increasing technical quality.

    • OpenNebula 3.2 adds out-of-the-box VMware support

      The developers of OpenNebula, the “open source cloud computing toolkit”, have announced version 3.2 of the software which adds support for Xen and KVM and out-of-the-box support for VMware including live migration, image and network management and automatic contextualisation (setting of parameters based on the host and other rules).

    • OpenStack, collaboration and competition
    • Piston ships new cloud OS based on OpenStack

      Piston Enterprise OS, or (pentOS) is a hardware agnostic OpenStack Linux distribution that utilizes the company’s Null-Tier architecture, combining storage, compute and networking on individual nodes to deliver high scalability at lower cost. This allows customers to “scale a high availability private cloud one server at a time,” the company announced Wednesday.

  • Databases

  • Education

    • Designing aesthetically pleasing Moodle courses

      When you’re working online and you access a text heavy web-page that scrolls for 5 pages, what is your initial reaction? To most of us, a text-heavy page filled with a long list of resources and activities is not inviting or enticing. The same is true for students and online courses. But with a little sleight of hand, plus use of the right resource formats and labels, you can design an aesthetically pleasing online course and avoid the long scrolling webpage syndrome.

  • Business

  • Funding

    • Nexenta raises $21 million in funding

      Nexenta has announced that it has received $21 million in Series C funding led by Menlo Ventures, along with Sierra Ventures and Razor’s Edge Ventures. The enterprise storage specialist says that the current round of funding will be used to sustain its growth and global expansion, and to scale its support; the California-based company previously received funding from Javelin Venture Partners and TransLink Capital.

  • BSD

    • DragonFlyBSD: Desktop is not a target

      This operating system is a community supported distribution, initially forked from FreeBSD 4.8.
      The current release of DragonFlyBSD is 2.10.1 and it was announced in April 2011.
      There are 3 downloading options available for this stable release of DragonFlyBSD: CD, USB and GUI. I downloaded the last one, which offers to have a GUI on top of the operating system itself. The distribution comes as a 1.2 Gb bz2 archive which packs an .img file of 3.7 Gb. Basically, this saves you some time during the downloading. But, then you need to unpack the file on your local drive before using it. Generally speaking, this is not an issue since most modern archivers, both Windows- and Linux-based, support bz2 format.

  • Project Releases

    • Rhythmbox 2.95 has been released!

      Rhythmbox 2.95 has been released, this release is considered as final transition of Rhythmbox to GTK +3, the new release also is compatible with Gnome3.

  • Public Services/Government

    • NASA looks to lower open source licensing barriers

      The recent launch of code.nasa.gov is providing better access to NASA sourced and funded projects, but William Eshagh of the NASA open government team says some forthcoming open-source licensing changes will make it more participatory.

    • Call to use open source

      Though open source developers approve free distribution of software, they are serious about their use in commercial products and solutions. “They may not restrict their source code or its usage, but they nonetheless would like licensing terms to be respected,” said Palamida CEO Mark Tolliver.

      With nearly 70 terabyte of code being indexed –against which most of the available open source software can be checked– Palamida’s solution mitigates risk of copyright infringement.

  • Openness/Sharing

    • Big Switch Open Sources OpenFlow Controller

      Floodlight, an Apache-licensed open-source OpenFlow Controller, was released recently by networking startup Big Switch Networks , as part of its commitment to the open source community around Software-Defined Networking (SDN).

      Headquartered in Palo Alto, Big Switch Networks was founded in 2010 to bring virtualization and cloud innovation to enterprise networks using OpenFlow-based SDN. The OpenFlow standard was developed at Stanford University and the University of California at Berkeley, and allows users to manage network equipment using software that can run on servers that communicate with switches, rather than directly on the switch or router.

    • Open Access/Content

      • The benefits of a transparent publishing calendar

        Why would an editor let go of publishing power and give the master calendar over to a group of trusted people? That sounds like a disaster waiting to happen. But we did it. And it works. And this is another example of the power of open source.

        At the beginning of July, we opened the opensource.com publishing calendar to all the moderators. It started with a prototype that quickly evolved and grew in popularity. Sharing what was scheduled for publishing and articles in the works was the first step in being more transparent between the different community moderators.

    • Open Hardware

      • Raven, the Open-Source Surgical Robot, Takes Flight in Santa Cruz

        A multidisciplinary team of engineers from the University of Washington and the University of California, Santa Cruz, have developed a surgical robot, called Raven 2, for use as an open-source surgical robotics research platform. Seven units of the Raven 2 will be made available to researchers at Harvard; Johns Hopkins; University of Nebraska-Lincoln; University of California, Berkeley; and the University of California, Los Angeles, while the remaining two systems will remain at the University of California, Santa Cruz, and the University of Washington.

  • Programming

Leftovers

  • M$ Disturbs an Ant-hill

    So far it seems no OEM is considering an exclusive relationship with M$. The monopoly is not there. Further, OEMs who do put out a few models of ARMed PCs with “8″ may be wasting their money. Same with retailers. At best, it seems quite possible retailers may stock shelves with “8″ only to find consumers don’t want it just as they didn’t want “Phoney 7″. M$’s scheme may backfire in that they will be shipping “8″ on machines that will not sell. That is not a sustainable business model.

  • x86PC Has Peaked. Here’s Proof.

    One picture is worth millions of words. Here’s a site that has plotted sales/shipments of various platforms of personal computing over the decades. The PC has obviously peaked while new technology climbs like a scalded cat. It’s also clear that the new technology is just getting started… and Android/Linux is overtaking whatever Apple puts out.

  • Censorship

    • Ron Paul Campaign Sues To Stop Unauthorized Web Videos

      In an unusual move, the campaign team for Republican Presidential candidate Ron Paul has filed a trademark and defamation lawsuit against for-now anonymous individuals who uploaded unauthorized attack videos.

      The videos in question bear the name “NHLiberty4Paul” and malign former candidate Jon Huntsman’s religion and ties to China. The Paul campaign has disavowed the videos.

      “This is a classic case of dirty politics resulting from the unlawful use in commerce of an underhanded and deceptive advertisement designed to tarnish plaintiff’s reputation,” reads the complaint (posted below) which was filed yesterday in San Francisco federal court.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • Supreme Court upholds copyright law

        The Supreme Court upheld a law Wednesday that extended U.S. copyright protection to books, musical compositions and other works by foreign artists that had been available without paying royalties.

        The justices said in a 6-2 decision Wednesday that Congress acted within its power to give protection to works that had been in the public domain. The law’s challengers complained that community orchestras, academics and others who rely on works that are available for free have effectively been priced out of performing “Peter and the Wolf” and other pieces that had been mainstays of their repertoires.

      • How SOPA and PIPA Affect US Websites and Companies

        Khan Academy has provided a very helpful video, “SOPA and PIPA : What SOPA and PIPA are at face value and what they could end up enabling”, explaining how SOPA and PIPA would work. It gives the lie to those supporters of the bills who claim it is targeting *only* foreign and illegal sites. Khan Academy, the famous non-profit educational site, shows how this “shoot-first, ask-questions-later” legislation could affect YouTube, Facebook or CNN, any site with user-generated content.

        I hope journalists and members of Congress in particular will view the video, because he goes through the wording of the proposed bills, bit by bit. It’s the best I’ve seen, by far. And for the rest of us, if we see journalists making mistakes in covering this story, why not let them know about this resource in a friendly way?

      • Supremes cite “settled law” to unconsitutionally extend copyright

        The Supreme Court has found Congress can extend copyright protection to works that had previously been in the public domain link here. The decision was 6-2 with one recusal. The story is covered here and here, but focus should be on the two dissenters who held that Congress had exceeded its authority when judged by the constitutional provision that copyright was justified when it served “to promote the progress of science and useful arts, by securing for limited times to authors and inventors the exclusive right to their respective writings and discoveries.”

      • EXCLUSIVE: Hollywood Moguls Stopping Obama Donations Because Of President’s Piracy Stand: “Not Give A Dime Anymore”
      • SOPA Activism Moves Republicans More Than Democrats
      • Inside the Cell Phone File Sharing Networks of Western Africa (Q+A)

        Digital filesharing doesn’t need the internet. This is the case at least in Western Africa and other parts of the developing world, where computers aren’t yet consumer goods for most and, even if they were, web access isn’t exactly New York City. Lovers of music still get it done, however, sharing files between knockoff cell phones via bluetooth connections and accumulating song collections in memory cards and bitrates that would probably make most in our lossless world laugh. It’s created a music culture that’s uniquely underground, an awesome anything-goes world of No Limit-style rap marrying Megaman-synth workouts, strange new techno-folks, and various other things so far untaggable.

      • Confessions Of A Hollywood Professional: Why I Can’t Support the Stop Online Piracy Act (UPDATED)
      • SOPA, PIPA Are Threatening Innovation And Economic Growth: Red Hat
      • RIAA Takes MPAA’s Condescending Response To Protests Up A Notch

        The MPAA and the RIAA have never been good about doing any kind of communication with “the public.” They’re just not set up for that kind of thing. They communicate with elected officials and with the press. And that’s about the extent of it. Of course, in this situation, where the public is actually paying attention to them… all they’re doing is showing off their true colors: condescending, entitled, spoiled brats who are seriously pissed off they’re not getting their way. Boo-freaking-hoo.

      • Anti SOPA/PIPA Protest: How it happened and what you can do
      • What does Wikipedia blackout hope to accomplish?

        As the fracas over the proposed federal anti-privacy legislation known as SOPA heats up this week, the open-source encyclopedia website, Wikipedia, says it will shut down for 24 hours, beginning midnight Tuesday to protest what the website warns is a threat to free speech.

        Instead of its usual homepage, users who navigate to the English-language Wikipedia Wednesday will find directions for reaching local members of Congress to protest the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and the Protect Intellectual Property Act (PIPA). Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales said in a statement Monday, he hopes this “will melt phone systems in Washington.”

      • Denial: MPAA Pretends That No Big Sites Have Joined SOPA/PIPA Protests

        Living in what can only be described as pure denial, the MPAA announced today that the SOPA/PIPA protests “failed to enlist big sites.” Honestly, there’s really not much more to say about that. Google. Wikipedia. Facebook. Amazon. Craigslist. All participating. Let’s just stare in wonder at the MPAA’s hubris and ability to deny reality.

      • Supreme Court Chooses SOPA/PIPA Protest Day To Give A Giant Middle Finger To The Public Domain
      • US Chamber Of Commerce Appears To Argue That SOPA & PIPA Apply To NO Websites At All
      • SOPA/PIPA blackout

        We are putting up a black interstitial about SOPA/PIPA for the next 24hrs or so. If you click away from it, you’ll get a cookie stored so you won’t see it again in the same browser, but what follows is my reasons for doing it.

      • Senator Ron Wyden To The Internet: Thank You For Speaking Up… But We’re Not Done Yet

        You may have heard that today’s been quite a day online and in Congress, concerning SOPA and PIPA. Senator Ron Wyden — the first politician in Congress to take a direct stand against these bills at the very beginning, and who was brushed off by the opposition — has now offered up what can be reasonably described as a thank you letter to the internet for speaking out on this important issue, and making it clear to many in Congress that this is not an issue that everyone takes lightly.

      • Did the SOPA blackout work? (And was it really a blackout?)

        Yesterday I posted screenshots of 127 websites that “blacked out” to protest the SOPA and PIPA legislation before the US Congress. Another site I came across reported that 7,000 sites had gone black. There was no citation, but I believe it if you include every blog that WordPress enabled to automatically go black and if you count all of those sites I posted screenshots of as “blacking out.

      • Yet More Collateral Damage From SOPA/PIPA: Activism Through Satire

        Greenpeace certainly isn’t alone in deploying mockery online to needle companies about the things they’d rather keep quiet: it’s particularly effective for smaller groups that can’t afford expensive, conventional campaigns. But such satire frequently depends upon using authentic elements from the marketing materials of the organizations they tackle. The extremely broad framing of SOPA/PIPA means that the large, well-lawyered enterprises of the world will have powerful new weapons for suppressing this kind of protest by claiming that their intellectual property is being harmed as a result.

      • Best Congressional Response To SOPA Yet? Rep. Bruce Braley Takes To *CENSORED* To Explain His *CENSORED*

        Lots of folks in Congress have been speaking out about SOPA and PIPA today — and what’s fascinating is how many of them are actually using key internet innovations to do so. Most of the comments we’ve seen were first made on Twitter and Facebook. But the best response (and by best, we mean funniest) response we’ve seen today comes from Rep. Bruce Braley from Iowa. Y

      • A Gallery Of The SOPA Blackout Protest Screens.
      • 8 Million People Looked Up Their Elected Officials’ Contact Info During Wikipedia Blackout
      • Jon Stewart Promises To Study Up On SOPA
      • A note on bravery

        A lot of people have been posting on twitter or sending me email thanking me for bravery in opposing SOPA. That’s a very very kind sentiment, and I really do appreciate it!

      • Traditional peer review in science faces challenges

        Thomas Lin writes at length about the scientific process, peer review of results, and publication of scientific papers link here.

        The concern remains that the results of research financed by the public’s taxes are not available free. The science establishment turns out of be conservative, however, and is sticking to the tradition of time consuming peer review and publication in the established journals. The results are still appropriated by the journals and published at great expense but considerable profit and public access is correspondingly limited.

      • Stop Censorship of the Internet!

        Thousands of websites across America have gone dark today in protest of supposed anti-piracy bills in Congress.

        I first noticed when I went to MichaelMoore.com to see how he was covering the Wisconsin protests, but his site was black with an eerie image of a mouse-controlled light that revealed the message “This site has gone dark today in protest of the U.S. Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) in the U.S. House of Representatives and the PROTECT IP Act (PIPA) in the U.S. Senate… We need to kill these bills to protect our right to free speech, privacy and prosperity.”

      • Stop Online Piracy Act Markup to Resume in February
      • Father of the web backs SOPA protests

        Tim Berners-Lee says US government plan to censor the internet violates human rights.

        The father of the web has added his voice to the global chorus of outrage at US Government plans to censor the internet, saying its plans are undemocratic and violate human rights.

      • SOPA, Internet regulation, and the economics of piracy

        Earlier this month, I detailed at some length why claims about the purported economic harms of piracy, offered by supporters of the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and PROTECT-IP Act (PIPA), ought to be treated with much more skepticism than they generally get from journalists and policymakers. My own view is that this ought to be rather secondary to the policy discussion: SOPA and PIPA would be ineffective mechanisms for addressing the problem, and a terrible idea for many other reasons, even if the numbers were exactly right. No matter how bad last season’s crops were, witch burnings are a poor policy response. Fortunately, legislators finally seem to be cottoning on to this: SOPA now appears to be on ice for the time being, and PIPA’s own sponsors are having second thoughts about mucking with the Internet’s Domain Name System.

      • LibreOffice and XBMC Join SOPA Strike

        Earlier today, January 18th, we’ve announced that the openSUSE and Fedora projects decided to protest against SOPA (Stop Online Piracy Act) and PIPA (PROTECT IP Act) through their websites.

Apple Cult Lacks a Sense of Humour, Monopolises Appearance of Cult Leader

Posted in Site News at 12:30 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Cult behaviour at Apple

Ron Hubbard

Summary: The appearance of Steve Jobs is ‘property’ of Apple based on the company’s very ludicrous actions

AS we pointed out some days ago, Apple sought to block reproduction of its dear leader’s appearance, which would make a dangerous precedence (a form of censorship).

According to reports such as this, Apple got its way. But more importantly, Apple, a patents and trademarks aggressor, also did this when he was alive, so those who use mortality as a factor miss the point. As one blog put it:

The 12-inch doll made a stir when news of its development emerged earlier this month. Commenters noted its uncanny resemblance to Jobs, who died Oct. 5.

Legal action was all but certain given an incident last year in which Apple successfully blocked the Chinese company MiC Gadget from producing a doll with Jobs’ likeness.

Here is more information on this subject:

In Icons drew a lot of attention when it announced it would be selling a Steve Jobs doll (“12in collectible figure” may be more accurate, but it’s also on the verbose side).

Compared with many representations of well-known figures, the prototype was a remarkable likeness to the extent that some people thought it fell into the ‘uncanny valley’ where the resemblance is so close it doesn’t really look like a model but the slight lack of realism makes it seem somehow creepy.

It does not look creepy, but Apple shut it down anyway. The creepy thing is the real character of Steve Jobs, who was not a nice person. In other news from China, Apple gets the egg treatment:

Apple halted sales of its iPhone 4S in Beijing and Shanghai on Friday after scuffles broke out over a delayed launch of the device, sending a shopper hurling eggs at one of its stores in the capital.

The Inquirer has more:

According to a report at Reuters, as soon as word spread that handsets were unavailable people began getting agitated, and as well as throwing around perfectly good eggs engaged in shoving matches with the police.

Apple deserves this for its aggression with patents. In fact, Apple deserves a lot worse and Cringely thinks that Apple might get sued for patent violations in Siri, which many people tactlessly claim to be an Apple “innovation” (there is prior art). To quote:

I was watching this Bloomberg video the other day featuring Shawn Carolan, the venture capitalist who backed the Siri electronic personal assistant startup then sold it to Apple. His was the closest I’d heard to a technical explanation of how Siri works and it surprised me because it sounded a lot like technology I remembered from years ago at Excite, the long-defunct search engine. Please look at the video and then meet me in the next paragraph. The part that excited me (no pun intended) is about four minutes in.

We are still urging for an Apple boycott. The company’s behaviour is appalling and it does a lot of damage to science and technology. Equally manacling are the company’s followers, who act on faith rather than facts.

Gates Wants the Public System to Pay the Bill

Posted in Bill Gates, Finance at 12:19 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Microsoft cronies

Summary: A quick update on the education front, which is being influenced (by proxy) by Bill Gates for the sake of private profits

THE GATES FOUNDATION, which already embezzles the American public, has been trying to hijack the US education system for several years now, turning it into a profit-making machine for all the wrong people, mostly at the expense of children and teachers.

Techrights has been tracking the matter for about 3 years now and a comment from Danaher M Dempsey Jr stood out as saying:

What the ed reformers are doing, de-professionalizing and demonizing teachers, will have the opposite effect. Who in their right mind would want to teach under the conditions of high stakes testing, standardized curriculum with matching tests, longer days with no additional pay and no additional support? And of course, larger class sizes which seems to be a new thing for Bill Gates and the other geniuses who know what’s best for the rest of us. According to him, class size doesn’t matter and why should it? His idea is ultimately online learning so basically in his eyes teachers, human beings, are expendable, Teachers are “Human Capitol” as the Gates backed NCTQ reports claim.

Another post from the same blog says:

Last year Bill Gates, a big promoter of charter schools, gave Stand for Children $3,476,300 in funding.

And then there’s PIE, another moneyed group, who is also funding SFC and is a big proponent of charter schools.

[...]

So, who is Chad Magendanz and what does he have to do with Stand for Children and charter schools? Apparently a lot. It might have happened innocently enough for Mr. Magendanz who received campaign funding from SFC and endorsements from Kelly Munn and Lisa MacFarland both with the Gates backed League of Education Voters during his campaign in 2008 when he ran for the Issaquah School board and again in 2009 when he ran for re-election. Even before that he was a member of SFC but this boost to school board member seemed to help him rise up through the ranks of SFC and become a spokesperson for the organization during the last legislative session.

[...]

So, where did that name just surface again? As one of the PTA members involved in developing the proposal for charter schools that will be introduced in the Washington State Legislative session this week. The same session where one of the Gates backed organizations, LEV, an organization that is pushing charter schools in our state will be speaking. See So much for fair and balanced with our Washington State PTA. The speaker is George Scarola and he is a lobbyist for LEV.

We are going to provide some more examples of front groups that Gates is funding to ruin the education system for the sake of private profits. The problem is, we lack the time to research the issue more profoundly like we used to. We catch up with older news, still.

False Information Funded by the Gates Foundation

Posted in Bill Gates, Deception at 12:12 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Summary: New examples from critics of the Gates Foundation where media consensus is utterly incorrect and paid for

GATES WATCHERS is a Web site that keeps an eye on the Gates Foundation.

Critics of Gates do not receive the exposure they deserve, in part due to financial strings that Gates attaches to publications (we provided evidence before). In a copy of a paid articles (thus less accessible) we find that “Tim Ogden writes the Foundation has issues with hearing the truth, accountability, and focus.” (source)

Another summary says: “It has pushed well past the boundaries of traditional foundation behaviour, intervening in and influencing public policy on both domestic and international matters – for good or ill, or very likely for a mixture of both.”

And another copy of an article alludes to Monsanto lobbying when it says:

And he says that Rockefeller no longer works in the same areas as the Gates Foundation. Huh? Don’t they both fund AGRA?

We wrote about this before, many times in fact. Gates keeps pushing his own numbers funded by himself to praise his work and push his agenda, so paper trail says a lot:

The DCP2 was published by the Disease Control Priorities Project, a joint enterprise of The World Bank, the National Institutes of Health, the World Health Organization, and the Population Reference Bureau, which was funded primarily by a $3.5 million grant from the Gates Foundation.

Regarding this shameful article, Gates Watchers asks:

How many grants did it get from the Gates Foundation before it gave Melinda this award?

As points out in our IRC channels this week, Gates also bribes many departments to have these rebranded after him, creating the illusion that he is loved (reputation laundering using the money he illegally earned). The Melinda worship is equally disturbing as we already saw how The Guardian and the BBC praised her right after they had gotten bribed by her husband. We covered this at the time and put forth then evidence.

As pointed out in another posting:

Here we see a Gates Foundation-supported evaluation of a Gates Foundation-supported project with a comment by chairs of a Gates Foundation-supported evaluation group. The potential for bias is clear.

It’s all stacked.

It turns out that homeless people surround the tax-evading corporation known as Gates Foundation (based on local news), but do they know the extent to which this foundation is exploiting the public and distorting information which gets presented to the public?

About 100 homeless people and anti-poverty activists staged a “sleep-out” Monday night outside the new Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation building in Seattle to protest a funding shortage that has forced the closure of 15 shelters.

Unless there is profit and PR to be made from the homeless, Gates will do nothing. It is class warfare from Gates and fellow criminals (who use PR to hide past crimes from media attention givers who do their work properly). We will need to write about this subject in length at a later stage. But basically, Gates keeps getting richer while controlling the press to the point where it says he “gives” (free samples to create patent dependence, PR, and so forth). It’s a big scam.

Journalists Become Paid PR Agents for SUSE and Other Clients

Posted in GNU/Linux, Microsoft, SLES/SLED at 12:03 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Bench PR revisited

Bench

Summary: Timely reminder that analysts, journalists and PR agents are interchangeable and serve a similar function, including promotion of Microsoft Linux (SUSE)

SEVERAL weeks ago we noted that SUSE/Attachmate had hired a PR agency for some spin and intervention with the media.

Yesterday we saw an Attachmate employee publishing an article as though it’s unbiased journalism but we also found out that an IDG “journalist” relocated to the firm that services Attachmate. To quote:

BENCH PR has appointed Lisa Banks, ex IDG journalist, to work on the agency’s growing list of IT clients. She has been appointed to the position of senior consultant.

Banks was a journalist at IDG Communications until December 2011, writing for CIO, ComputerWorld and TechWorld. She will work from BENCH PR’s new Adelaide office.

Journalism and PR are similar industries in the sense that they usually sell influence and only pretend to be objective. IDG is an example of it because it gets bribed through advertising and IDC contracts.

SUSE coverage is in part artificial, resulting from pressure from PR agencies. We too get contacted by PR people sometimes, but we pay them no attention. As another new bit of background:

Attachmate plots new future for Novell
Attachmate Corp.’s purchase of Novell Inc. was finalized on April 27 of this year. Attachmate aimed to breathe new life into Novell’s franchises and assured partners and current users of Novell products that they would receive their continued support.

SUSE was separated structurally, but it still controlled by Attachmate and the Bench PR contact with Attachmate explicitly covers SUSE (we showed this before). Whenever reading about SUSE in the corporate press, bear in mind it’s possibly fake and paid for.

Former Microsoft Executives Get to Control FOSS, Linux-based Operating Systems

Posted in GNU/Linux, Microsoft at 11:52 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Photo

Summary: Former Microsoft people gain influence inside Microsoft’s competitors

THE PREVIOUS post spoke about a possible Microsoft patent lawsuits proxy. Speaking of proxies, the growth of Black Duck troubles us because it tries to tell us how to use and select FOSS despite being a proprietary company with Microsoft roots. Fortify, another ally of Microsoft [1, 2, 3, 4, 5], has an executive departure and the destination has FOSS orientation:

Open source security information and event management (SIEM) AlienVault has hired a new leadership team, grabbing a number of security industry veterans from Fortify Software.

More interesting than all the above is that an abusive Microsoft executive whom we wrote about before in relation to the Linux-based WebOS is put in charge of it:

Strangely, the release (embedded in full after the break) mentions that Bill will be leading HP’s “cloud and webOS open source initiatives,” but it fails to elaborate on what exactly those “initiatives” may be.

More background was posted here:

Veghte joined HP in 2010. In the most recent fiscal year, he grew HP’s software business by 18 percent. Prior to HP, he spent two decades at Microsoft in a variety of senior leadership positions. Most recently, he managed the company’s $15 billion global Windows® business and was instrumental in the delivery and launch of Windows 7.

So a Windows executive now controls a Linux-based open source platform? This does not sound reassuring at all.

Under Microsoft Leadership, Nokia Patents Passed to Patent Aggressor Sisvel, Likely Target is Android

Posted in Microsoft, Patents at 11:31 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Two calls

Summary: Sisvel’s bullies appear at the scene amid Nokia-Microsoft flirtations and rumours of a buyout

THE great patent farce keeps yielding more stories for us to highlight.

While patent people get promoted, us technical people have less left to do at technical companies. Rather than see companies emerging we just see litigating proxies like MOSAID (patent lawyers) and Sisvel (we have no wiki page for these patent combatants but many past articles [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14) showing up as external agents for the Microsoft-controlled Nokia:

Patent licensing outfit Sisvel has acquired 450 patents from Nokia, 350 of which are essential for mobile telephony, but despite appearances this is no desperate attempt to borrow cash from the future.

The patents include 350 which are considered “essential”, in that it is impossible to create mobile phones conforming to 2G, 3G and/or 4G telephony standards without infringing them. But as such they are also subject to Fair, Reasonable and Non-Discriminatory (FRAND) licensing – hardly the sort of thing a patent troll would be interested in.

Now there is whitewash from Forbes:

What Sisvel is actually doing is taking over from Nokia (as it also does for some other companies) the boring and paperwork full process of licencing the patents. And for those who want to bring a new line of handsets to market, providing a one stop shop where they can sign up with Sisvel once and once only to get all of the patents they need. Or access to licences on those patents that is.

Utter nonsense. All that Sisvel does is tax the public and in this case its target is likely to be Android phones. It’s an old proxy tactic.

Patent purchases seem to have become common recently (especially when companies implode) and this latest one has coverage that says:

Cinven buys ICG’s patents business for £950m

[...]

Shares in ICG, known predominantly for its junior debt funds that back buy-out deals, edged up 3.8p to 250.7p.

The patents arms race is affecting everyone because the market gets distorted and customers bear all the costs. Patents create unnecessary jobs and slow down innovation by reducing the number of engineers a company is able to afford. The most disturbing thing is that, just as we predicted from the very start, Microsoft uses the patents of Nokia pioneers to attack Microsoft’s competition.

Oracle is Retreating From Android Patent Case After Steve Jobs’ Death

Posted in Apple, Microsoft, Oracle, Patents at 11:19 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz


Jobs image licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License (version 1.2 or any later versions); Ellison patch By Thomas Hawk

Summary: Reports insinuate that Oracle might drop its patent claims against Dalvik in Android/Linux

WE previously hypothesised that Oracle’s tactless attack on Android/Linux/Dalvik was in part motivated by the sociopath who runs Oracle. Larry Ellison’s best friend was Steve Jobs and we all know how Jobs felt about Android. Now that Ellison need not impress Jobs and his case against Android is collapsing one patent at a time, it is being reported that Oracle might settle although Google will not let this happen. As Groklaw says angrily:

What part of the word NO does Oracle not understand? Why is it that legal counsel for Oracle is incapable of complying with a simple, straightforward request from the court? Why does legal counsel for Oracle believe it must rehash, time and again, arguments that have already failed to satisfy the court? If you have answers for any of these questions, you might want to give Oracle a heads up.

IDG says that Oracle now offers to drop the patent charges: [via]

Apparently fed up with delays, Oracle said it is willing to drop its claims of patent infringement against Google if the court will hear its copyright complaints soon.

Sadly, this report from IDG quotes a Microsoft lobbyist with a campaign against Android. This too he is trying to spin as bad news for Android, but he does so poorly. Maybe Microsoft should give him a pay cut.

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