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Links 9/3/2012: Linux Mint 12 LXDE is Out, Nokia Rushes Back to Linux-based Operating System

Posted in News Roundup at 6:26 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish



  • Gartner Believes the World Owes Wintel A Living

    Gartner has predicted that 2012 will be another slow year for Wintel but 2013 will be better. They seem to feel ARM and */Linux will have no traction. The same forces that Gartner believes will give Wintel traction will also give */Linux on ARM greater traction. In fact there is nothing preventing */Linux from running on Intel/x86 systems…

  • IBM streams Linux and Windows desktop through USB stick
  • Server

    • NOAA and GNU/Linux Predict the Weather

      All IT should do the same. Look at what IT costs your organization and what performance you get or want to get in the future. GNU/Linux will give whatever performance you want at a lower price for licensing, re-re-reboots, slowing down, pleasing M$ with absurd restrictions in the EULA or authentication, and complexity. I recommend Debian GNU/Linux.

  • Kernel Space

    • Linux Foundation Welcomes Nvidia, 3 Other New Members

      In a brief statement, Nvidia said that its membership in the Linux Foundation will enable it to collaborate better with “the organizations and individuals instrumental in shaping the future of Linux, enabling a great experience for users and developers of Linux.”

    • Kernel Log: Coming in 3.3 (Part 4) – Drivers
    • Fluendo Joins The Linux Foundation

      Fluendo, the leading multimedia software development company and GStreamer expert, announced today that it has joined The Linux Foundation, the nonprofit organization dedicated to accelerating the growth of Linux.

    • Linux creator Torvalds slams OpenSUSE security devs in Google+ rant

      Linux creator Linus Torvalds has posted a vitriolic rant on Google+ hammering the developers of OpenSUSE for “mentally diseased” security measures.

      Requiring users to provide an admin password to make even minor changes like adding a new wireless network or changing the time zone is “moronic and wrong,” according to the open source guru. The furious article was apparently prompted by Torvald’s daughter running into these security issues at school.

    • Greg KH: The 2.6.32 Linux kernel
    • Nvidia’s Embrace of Linux Foundation Highlights Open Source’s Growing Status
    • Lustre User Group Announces Conference Program
    • Graphics Stack

      • TitaniumGL: A Faster Multi-Platform Graphics Driver Architecture?

        After first being introduced on Windows years ago, and then FreeBSD and ReactOS support added last year, this week finally marked the release of TitaniumGL for Linux. TitaniumGL is self-described as a “freeware driver architecture” and carries a goal to support OpenGL on graphics cards with broken, bad, or missing OpenGL hardware drivers. Here are some benchmarks of TitaniumGL compared to NVIDIA’s binary GPU driver and the Mesa/Gallium3D LLVMpipe software rasterizer.

      • VMware’s Linux 3D Guest Driver Is Ready

        The vmwgfx DRM kernel driver left the staging area in the Linux 3.2 kernel, marking it as a point ready for stable production use. The Gallium3D user-space driver for VMware became properly christened in Mesa 8.0 along with the new XA State Tracker for 2D acceleration and other changes. The final piece of the accelerated VMware puzzle is now fitted: the xf86-video-vmware 12.0 DDX driver. (Read VMware’s New Graphics Architecture Is Shaping Up.)

      • Linux 3.4 Kernel Will Support Intel Medfield Graphics

        The merge window for the Linux 3.4 kernel will open up this month assuming the latest Linux 3.3 release plans work out. One of the features to look forward to out of Linux 3.4 will be the DRM driver support for Intel Medfield graphics.

  • Applications

  • Distributions

    • Review: MadBox 11.10

      MadBox is an Ubuntu-based Openbox distribution that aims to be user-friendly as well. In essence, it is the successor to #! for the Ubuntu base. Development on MadBox and related applications like ADeskBar seemed to have ceased after version 10.10, but a few months ago (though I only found out about it a few weeks ago) a new version based on Ubuntu 11.10 “Oneiric Ocelot” was released, coinciding with the unveiling of a new website for the distribution.

    • New Releases

    • Debian Family

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Government use of Ubuntu

            Governments are making increasingly effective use of Ubuntu in large-scale projects, from big data to little schools. There is growing confidence in open source in government quarters, and growing sophistication in how they engage with it.

            But adopting open source is not just about replacing one kind of part with another. Open source is not just a substitute for shrink-wrapped proprietary software. It’s much more malleable in the hands of industry and users, and you can engage with it very differently as a result. I’m interested in hearing from thought leaders in the civil service on ways they think governments could get much more value with open source, by embracing that flexibility. For example, rather than one-size-fits-all software, why can’t we deliver custom versions of Ubuntu for different regions or countries or even departments and purposes? Could we enable the city government of Frankfurt to order PC’s with the Ubuntu German Edition pre-installed?

            Or could we go further, and enable those governments to participate in the definition and production and certification process? So rather than having to certify exactly the same bits which everyone else is using, they could create a flavour which is still “certified Ubuntu” and fully compatible with the whole Ubuntu ecosystem, can still be ordered pre-installed from global providers like Dell and Lenovo, but has the locally-certified collection of software, customizations, and certifications layered on top?

          • Ubuntu 12.04 to ship with enhanced privacy controls

            Ubuntu 12.04 will ship with new privacy controls for the Zeitgeist event logger. Zeitgeist is the program that runs in the background of Ubuntu’s Unity desktop environment collecting statistics on how users interact with their computers and offering suggestions based on most-used items and applications using machine-learning techniques.

          • Got Privacy? Ubuntu Linux 12.04 Will Help Ensure It.
          • New stable series for Canonical’s Bazaar version control

            The Bazaar developers have announced version 2.5.0 of the version control system that is used by the Linux Foundation, Ubuntu, the GNU project, Drizzle and many other free software projects to manage their source code. The new version marks the start of a long-term stable series due to be supported until April 2017. Users of previous stable releases of Bazaar are encouraged to upgrade.

          • Three Reasons the Ubuntu Desktop Lags the iPad
          • Five day private cloud deployment promises low stress, high quality

            Canonical, the company behind the Linux-based OS Ubuntu, is promising a private cloud infrastructure deployment service that it says takes exactly five days to complete, costs $9,000 and comes ready for channel resale.

            Canonical delivers the Jumpstart program using OpenStack as the cloud computing architecture in combination with DevOps program Juju, which enables end users to manage expansion more easily over time.

  • Devices/Embedded

Free Software/Open Source


  • “Algorithms can have errors”: One man’s quest to purge horrific pictures from his Google results
  • Security

  • Cablegate

  • Finance

    • One More Thing For Governance Day

      The basic argument is that repeat-player investment bankers provide value not by telling brainless executives whether to accept or reject a merger, but by providing intelligent decisionmakers with access and relationships, and relationships come with conflicts.

    • Chris Cook: The Ghost of Enron Past Explains Oil Market Manipulation

      I outlined in a recent post my view that the oil market price has been inflated twice by passive (inflation hedgers) investors, albeit with short term speculative spikes from active (speculators) investors: once from 2005 to June 2008; and again from early 2009 to date. In attempting to ‘hedge inflation’ passive investors perversely ended up actually causing it, and allowed oil producers to manipulate and support the oil market price with fund money to the detriment of oil consumers.

    • Fox Attacks Wages of Working-Class Maids

      Fox Business News recently ran a segment criticizing a collective bargaining agreement struck between workers and management in New York City’s hotel industry. Analysts on the program called the deal “a nightmare,” singling out the provisions raising wages for housekeepers as “shocking.” Fox’s reaction is consistent with its past coverage of worker’s issues, which has portrayed union efforts to secure higher wages and benefits for the working class as an affront to capitalism.

      The agreement between the New York Hotel Trades Council A.F.L.-C.I.O, the union representing workers in New York’s hotel industry, and the Hotel Association of New York, the trade group representing hotel owners, gives housekeepers a 29% raise in their current salary over seven years, giving them a salary of $59,823 by the time the CBA expires.

  • Censorship

    • Police Censor Google, Facebook and 8,000 Other Sites by Accident

      A “human error” carried out by the police resulted in thousands of websites being completely blocked at the DNS level yesterday. Danish visitors to around 8,000 sites including Google and Facebook were informed that the sites were being blocked by the country’s High Tech Crime Unit due to them offering child pornography, a situation which persisted for several hours.

    • Paypal Pressured To Play Morality Cop And Forces Smashwords To Censor Authors
    • Anonymous, Decentralized and Uncensored File-Sharing is Booming

      The file-sharing landscape is slowly adjusting in response to the continued push for more anti-piracy tools, the final Pirate Bay verdict, and the raids and arrests in the Megaupload case. Faced with uncertainty and drastic changes at file-sharing sites, many users are searching for secure, private and uncensored file-sharing clients. Despite the image its name suggests, RetroShare is one such future-proof client.

    • The True Damage Of An Illegitimate DMCA Takedown Goes Much Further Than Simple ‘Inconvenience’

      Whenever an artist finds their own creations removed by a erroneous DMCA takedown notice, defenders of the system are quick to point out that the collateral damage is minimal and, because the supposedly “offending” post/picture/etc. usually returns to its original place, what’s the big deal? It’s just an inconvenience and a small price to pay in order for rightsholders to protect their intellectual property.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality

    • BT and TalkTalk lose challenge against Digital Economy Act

      The government has been given the green light to implement the Digital Economy Act after the final legal challenge by two internet service providers was thrown out at the court of appeal.

      BT and TalkTalk on Tuesday lost their appeal against last year’s judicial review of the government’s controversial anti-piracy legislation on all but one ground.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Electronic Arts, identity thief?

      Identity theft is a huge problem that affects millions of Americans each year. If a crook stole your most personal information and used it to make a buck, you’d be furious.

      And, of course, that’s illegal. But if you are a corporation, you can steal all the identities you want for profit.

    • Trademarks

    • Copyrights

      • As BPI Tries To Block The Pirate Bay From The UK, Dan Bull Explains Why Musicians Should Block BPI

        Dan Bull, the UK-based musician who we’ve written about many times for his consistently awesome songs about the music industry, file sharing, copyright laws and the like has now put together another wonderful song, called Bye Bye BPI.

      • Streetlight Manifesto Proudly Boycotts Itself

        It is and has been for quite some time our position that Victory Records is an artist-hostile, morally corrupt and generally dishonest company, with whom we have had the displeasure of being associated due to a contract that was signed years ago. We’re not writing this today to air grievances, of which there are many; numerous bands’ struggles with Victory are well-documented (and many more are sealed by a court of law), so we figured we’re going to skip the allegations and try to solve the problem, as we see it.

      • Why Search Engines Can’t Just ‘Fix’ Search Results The Way The MPAA/RIAA Want

        It’s become clear in the past year or so that one key “target” in the legacy entertainment industry’s game plan is to force Google to change its search results to have “good sites” rise up and “bad sites” be pushed down. They’ve been putting pressure on search engines for quite some time now, and have even considered suing Google for not giving it the results they want. Late last year, the RIAA even put out a “report card” in which it complained that Google won’t let them program Google’s results for everyone else.

      • German Government Wants Google To Pay To Show News Snippets
      • Justices Won’t Hear Photo Site’s Suit Against Google

        The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday rejected an appeal by a nude-photo publisher that alleged Google Inc. was infringing its copyrighted images.

      • RIAA Still Doesn’t Get It: Hopes SOPA Opposition Was A ‘One-Time Experience’

        In a previous post, I looked at the first part of Andrew Keen’s interview with RIAA CEO Cary Sherman. In the second half of the interview, Sherman fields some audience questions collected on Twitter, and his answers further expose the serious problems with his understanding of what’s happening in music, what happened with SOPA, and what’s happening to his industry.

      • Can A Company Be An ‘Author’ For The Purpose Of Copyright?

        The specific case involved horse-racing tables and a dispute between two different horse-racing magazines, with one accusing the other of copyright infringement. Oddly, both magazines seem to admit that the actual data originated from neither magazine, but from the same third party: the Singapore Turf Club. Still, there appears to have been some questions about the layout and design, which could be given some level of copyright protection — but, apparently, only if it were created by “living humans.”

      • Chris Dodd: The Internet Developed Because Of Strict Copyright Enforcement

        His latest discussion on the topic came at the National Association of Attorneys General meeting in Washington DC — a “friendly” audience for Dodd. His discussion starts around the 2 hour, 10 minute mark if you want to fast forward the video. For reasons that are unclear, CSPAN has disabled embedding on this video. Either way, Dodd continues to show off that he has no idea what happened. The specific “panel” that he’s on is (of course) pretty one-sided. It involves him, old friend Rick Cotton from NBC Universal (“just think about the poor corn farmers!”) and then two university officials to talk about how they’re forced to censor the internet because of draconian laws that the MPAA pushed through (where there’s at least a little pushback on the ridiculousness of copyright law, but just barely).

      • INTERVIEW: Seth Godin on Libraries, Literary Agents and the Future of Book Publishing as We Know It
      • ACTA

        • Darrell Issa Posts Text Of ‘Unconstitutional’ ACTA For Open Feedback; Something USTR Never Did
        • Workshop Audience Barred From ‘Demonstrating’ Approval Of Michael Geist’s ACTA Takedown

          Although ACTA has now been referred by the European Commission to the European Court of Justice, it continues its passage through the various committees of the European Parliament, each of which will provide input on the final decision of whether to ratify ACTA or not. The first of these took place last week, when the International Trade (INTA) committee had a preliminary ACTA workshop. This included hearing from external experts, one of whom was Michael Geist, well known to Techdirt readers.

          It will come as no surprise to learn that his ten-minute speech succeeded in distilling the key flaws of ACTA in a highly-accessible way that left the treaty’s supporters desperately trying to undo the damage to their arguments for the rest of the day — and failing.

        • Obama Administration: ACTA Is Binding & Don’t Worry Your Pretty Little Heads About TPP

          That’s interesting, because it’s what many people had assumed (and what other signatories to ACTA have been saying), but actually contradicts earlier statements from the USTR suggesting that we can ignore parts of the agreement that we don’t like or which conflict with existing US law. It also means that, as we’ve been warning, ACTA dangerously restricts Congress from passing new laws that could push back on some of the worst aspects of copyright law. Sure, Congress could ignore ACTA, but there would be substantial problems if it were to do so. In other words, ACTA is binding on the US under international law… but not under US law. Of course, international law trumps US law here, so that’s kind of meaningless.

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