Posted in Site News at 11:29 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz
Summary: Starting next month we’ll be writing more posts under Android, the fastest-growing Linux-based OS
TECHRIGHTS has no disclosures to make, but as an Android developer myself, my opinions may be biased. I just happen to prefer open platforms; many developers do.
For over a year now I have been writing almost all articles on a Palm PDA, which uses proprietary software (I have used PalmOS for over a decade). It has a tactile-friendly keyboard. But today I lost an entire article about reasons why Vista 8 is inadequate for business use due to its privacy violations (and reasons beyond that). I lost all the text and then spent a considerable amount of time trying to resurrect it, all in vain. Perhaps now is a good time to just write all the posts on an Android tablet, which actually runs Free software editors and contains Linux at the core. PalmOS has become too long in the tooth.
Late at night I will be leaving home for about 3 weeks. It’s likely that Techrights will be quiet in the interim. Afterwards I will be composing most articles on my Android tablet. My Other Half, who will have been my wife by then, also uses Android, so I guess we’re increasingly dependent on Linux in our mobile life; we both have a B.Sc. in Computer Science as well. Wish us luck in our wedding.
Until next month, we wish everyone a lovely end of summer. Techrights is pretty much guaranteed to carry on as usual for a long time to come. The focus remains patents. It’s the big battle.
Posted in Apple at 11:20 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz
Anti-Android camp cheers while the public boos
Summary: The decision in the high-profile case against Android leads to immense opposition not just to Apple but patents as well
THIS weekend brought out some initial feedback on the Apple vs. Samsung case. Friends of mine told me about it and at least one convinced his company not to buy anything from Apple (as the company had planned to), going of course for Android, instead. Apple is going to get a massive backlash for this. People at the Health Club this morning (it’s Bank Holiday) are talking about it; they really start to ‘get’ the problem with patents. It enables people like myself to show them how customers are affected (cost) and how dumb patents really are; some can be realised by a toddler, e.g. zooming strokes, device shape, and so on.
Apple may also end up buying patents from Kodak, as reports suggest that Apple wants those patents in its portfolio; being a patent bully, Apple deserves none of that. It has become more or less clear that Apple is just a branding (Samsung makes parts of its gadgets) and litigation company that collects silly patents while inventing just about nothing. The patent booster Dennis Crouchcovered the ruling which lawyers generally like (a close friend tells me that many lawyers convert to patent law these days, it is a gold rush). Other largesites that covered the news concentrate on the number, which exceeds a billion dollars.
Samsung has said: “It is unfortunate that patent law can be manipulated to give one company a monopoly over rectangles with rounded corners” (how true).
Here is another notable bit: “Jurors who zipped through more than 600 questions in three days to arrive at their verdict in the intellectual-property battle between Apple Inc. (AAPL) and Samsung Electronics Co. (005930) had as their leader an engineer with a patent to his name.”
This is an inadequate way to deliver a decision and several people already emphasise this. Groklaw‘s Pamela Jones says there is something wrong with this picture and Swapnil Bhartiya calls it “rushed job” and implies that it was not “a fair trial” . To quote; “The verdict in the Apple vs Samsung case came faster than expected. The jury seemed to be in a hurry (after having worked over time) and reached a verdict giving Apple a victory on a platter. Perhaps the jury did not want to spoil their weekend and handed their verdict which many have noted has several inconsistencies.”
The jury was expected to dismiss the case, so the decision surprised us somewhat. Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols is not worried. He writes: “The jury in Apple vs. Samsung, doubtlessly eager to be out by the weekend, rushed their way through the approximately 26 pages and 55 questions of their instructions and decided that Samsung did indeed violate some of Apple’s patents just over a billion bucks.
“Impressive? Not really.
“This is not the end. This verdict doesn’t even matter in the long run. This was just another clash.”
The jury is also biased because Apple is a US-based company and a glorified brand, whereas Samsung is “foreign”.
Pamela Jones says that $1,049,343,540 is too much and it’s lawyers who make money and bragaboutit the most. For them, it’s an idealogical victory, jutifying the leeching of society through software patents. Another one who is celebrating the outcome is an Apple-funded lobbyist whom we filed a complaint against. He turned blogging into a corrupt business model. But am I suggesting that this is AstroTurf? Of course not, why would the one-man business Müller Consulting do something that is against EU law and also a violation of US law that the FTC is cracking down on? Note the sarcasm.
When AstroTurfing disguised as “blogging” becomes mainstream the government does in fact crack down on it. Google didnot pay anyone to do something similar. The services offered by Müller include mass-mailing journalists with talking points of said corporations, blogging with talking points and material handed in by the client using a blog run by Google, threatening opposition, etc.
The benefits of the programme Müller offers are that clients get to spam journalists and bloggers without getting flak; journalists quote the lies, attribute it to “independent source”; this is done by mailing rather than commenting (by finding otherwise-hidden E-mail addresses) to hide and ‘proxify’ the lobbying. We showed proof.
The coverage was more moderately decent and balanced in the UK, as neither company is British. Here is what Reuters wrote and here is an article that my cousin in Florida sent me: “After Samsung’s stunning $1 billion defeat in court at the hands of Apple , calling it a winner might seem awfully far-fetched. But that’s the argument some are making about the South Korean conglomerate.” (source).
The sure thing is, customers don’t win here. Apple claims to ‘own’ basic concepts and now it wants to tax people all around the world for enjoying rectangles with round corners. What would Moses have said?
A long time ago we called for an Apple boycott and some of my friends say I should do so again. My reply is, the people are already revolting and the boycott is far broader than us. Over the coming week, many journalists will slam Apple and patents. As Mr. Pogson put it, “Backlash Has Begun Against Apple…”
Posted in Microsoft at 10:43 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz
Summary: The BBC’s refusal to serve Microsoft’s mobile platform shows that no growth is foreseen there
THE STRUGGLES of Microsoft in the mobile market won’t be over any time soon. Microsoft hopes that its patent ally Apple will pressure manufacturers to move to WP7/WP8 using fear of patents.
One of the problems Microsoft has in mobile platforms is similar to the problem of GNU/Linux on the desktop. Even Microsoft allies like the BBC won’t bother with Microsoft. To quote Engadget, “Microsoft is getting brickbats from developers unenthused by its forthcoming operating system(s), and the BBC is the latest to join the chorus. When asked about bringing iPlayer to Windows Phone, the corporation’s on-demand honcho, Daniel Danker, responded by saying it’s not cost-or-time effective for the system — thanks to a lack of support for HTTP Live Streaming. Mr. Danker confirmed to us that HLS is not the proprietary format it’s believed to be, used on a wide variety of devices including Smart TVs and consoles — but is not included in Redmond’s mobile OS.
“Live streaming is also impossible thanks to a “bug” in the software that can’t secure the session, breaking the corporation’s copy protection system which only affects mobile devices. Redmond’s known of the problem for some time, and is working on a solution, but has yet to make any official announcement otherwise. He told us that he’s optimistic that a solution might arrive, perhaps on October 26th, but until then, the corporation won’t even look at developing an app for any Windows-powered handset. After the break we’ve included the full text of the original email if you’d like to hear it from the source.”
Remember that there are many former Microsoft employees inside the BBC, especially in top positions.
All that Microsoft can do not is bribe so-called ‘analysts’ to produce so-called ‘whitepapers’ that lay out a fairytale about Windows becoming a mobile contender. We have seen that in action for years. In mobile, Microsoft is quite irrelevant, except as a patent extortionist. █
There are a lot of debates going on about the pros and cons of the systemd service management system versus the legacy System V init system. Many of these debates center around the technical efficacy of systemd, but perhaps the most powerful question to be asked is: is Linux finally ready to walk away from its Unix legacy once and for all?
Following the recent release of PowerTOP 2.1 I did some testing from a modern Intel notebook to see what kind of power-savings one can expect from running the open-source PowerTOP software on a modern notebook running Ubuntu.
An alleged Linux user-space developer has called for dropping x86 32-bit support from the Linux kernel.
If you need a good laugh to start or end the day, there’s the Drop support for x86-32 thread on the Linux kernel mailing list. Microsoft is planning to drop their 32-bit flavor of Windows beginning with the next release, Windows 9. Microsoft has already shared that Windows 8 will be their last 32-bit release and then Windows 9 will only support “x64″ when it comes to the x86 architecture. The user initiating this thread is proposing that Linux drops support for 32-bit support too at the same time as the release of Windows 9 x64.
The Linux Foundation’s Driver Backport Workgroup is working on automatically backporting the Linux kernel, which was discussed in some detail at The Linux Foundation’s Collaboration Summit in April. As a result, a new collaboration is forming between this Workgroup and the compat-drivers project.
The Linux Foundation tips us off this Friday afternoon of the pending announcement. “Not only is Twitter built on Linux but open source software is core to its technology strategy. It’s investing even more in the platform now as the company evolves and positions itself for the future. Linux has become even more dominant among web-based companies as the ‘hacker way’ has become pervasive among the newest generation of startups. Twitter’s Open Source Manager will be speaking next week at LinuxCon in San Diego Thursday morning.”
The Linux Foundation is growing, again. The Foundation is set to announced that Twitter, Inktank and Servergy willl be joining the Linux organization. The formal announcement is set for next Tuesday, at the LinuxCon event.
So what Linus assumed to be a ‘won’t be big and professional’ has grown with leaps and bounds and now used almost everywhere you can imagine — from mobile phones to super-computers, from home equipments to space, from small desktop computers to those massive servers serving millions of pageviews a day. Linux has almost dominated all large technological fields known to mankind.
Tomorrow, August 25, is the day traditionally used as the anniversary date for the Linux operating system.
Much pomp and circumstance surrounded last year’s observance of Linux’s 20th birthday, so this year there won’t be a lot of big parties planned. But for those of us here in the U.S., the 21st birthday is a significant milestone.
As expected, with Marek Olšák requesting a delay in branching Mesa 9.0 so that he can land more features, support for multi-sample anti-aliasing (MSAA) for more ATI/AMD Radeon hardware has landed plus there’s improved anti-aliasing support for currently-supported GPUs.
Rob Clark, the Texas Instruments developer known for his work on the OMAP DRM driver, DMA-BUF, and hacking a Qualcomm open-source driver in his spare time, has been dabbling with Wayland. Rob’s done some optimizations and simplifications to shaders used by Wayland’s Weston reference compositor that greatly improve the performance.
MPlayer2, the fork of MPlayer, now has patches to support this video player while running on Wayland.
Alexander Preisinger presented the set of patches to Wayland and MPlayer2 patches that allow for the open-source video player to work over Wayland via EGL, with input and output working correctly but the only reported shortcoming right now is no window decoration support. The patches can be found here.
In a commit made on Friday to mesa/drm, VMWGFX is now built by default with a commit message of “vmwgfx: No longer experimental…And hasn’t been in a long while..” If someone is against the support, at configure-time for building libdrm they can pass the –disable-vmwgfx switch.
Developers at Intel’s Open-Source Technology Center have made more improvements to their open-source Linux graphics driver to benefit Valve’s upcoming release of their Left 4 Dead 2 game that’s powered by the Source Engine natively on Linux.
Following the recent Intel HD 2500 Ivy Bridge Linux graphics benchmarks, here’s some more numbers that were recently collected when benchmarking the latest Linux graphics code with the Intel HD 2000/3000/4000 graphics cores when clocking the rest of the CPU to a common speed.
If you have never heard of or used John the Ripper, then you most likely have not heard of or used Johnny either. So, what, or who, is Johnny? Well, Johnny is not a who, more like a what.
What Johnny is, is a graphical interface to John the Ripper, which is a very powerful and cross-platform password cracking tool that you probably have installed in your favorite Linux or BSD distribution, or other UNIX-like operating system. Johnny just takes what used to be a command line task and provides a user-friendly interface to it.
FlightGear, the leading open-source flight simulator software, features a number of improvements with its new v2.8.0 release.
FlightGear 2.8.0 was released last week as part of celebrating 15 years that this free and open-source flight simulator project has been around. FlightGear 2.8.0 attempts to make the cross-platform flight simulator with more than 400 different aircraft more realistic through a number of improvements.
Last year Epic Games ported their Unreal Engine 3 to Adobe Flash Player 11 using Adobe’s Stage 3D low-level API. Stage 3D exposes full GPU-hardware-accelerated 2D/3D APIs for Flash and AIR to web-browsers as well as iOS and Android.
Earlier this year at GDC2012, Epic Games then showed off UE3 running in an Adobe Flash browser in the form of their Epic Citadel demo, Dungeon Defenders, and Unreal Tournament 3. Details on the UE3 Flash port can be found at UnrealEngine.com.
Unvanquished is still on track to become one of the most compelling and visually impressive multi-platform open-source games.
Nearly two months ago I wrote about how Unvanquished looked like a very promising open-source game. Unvanquished was spawned from the ioquake3-powered Tremulous open-source game but has much better artwork assets and is powered by their own Daemon Engine, which is a fork of the OpenWolf Engine. OpenWolf in turn is based upon id’s open-sourced Enemy Territory code-base plus the XReaL rendering engine improvements.
The Steel Storm 2 game update video is embedded below, which was accompanied by a YouTube video description of “Quick update on what’s going on with Steel Storm 2. While idTech 4 is different from DarkPlaces engine, the transition is going smoothly, although not as fast as I anticipated.” So while they may be able to gain some greater features out of id Tech 4 over DarkPlaces, which is a heavily-modified version of the open-source id Tech 2 engine, the game’s development isn’t going too fast.
Broken Sword, the three-parts-so-far adventure that started more than 15 years ago with an American tourist named George Stobbart chasing a clown trough a sewer, is returning for another instalment. Charles Cecil, creator of the original has turned to Kickstarter to seek $400,000 funding. The series has always been popular, as is evident by the fact that one day in it’s already 25% funded.
Arch Linux based KDE distro Chakra has got a new release. Chakra 2012.08 Claire comes with the brand new KDE 4.9 desktop along with a new Dharma theme. This release is available in x86_64 architecture only as i686 support has been dropped.
Unfortunately, due to Nokia selling off Qt and the other recent changes, the beta for the Qt 5.0 tool-kit still isn’t ready.
With Nokia selling Qt to Digia and Nokia getting rid of one of the Qt offices, which were changes that already harmed the Qt 5.0 release and caused sadness among developers, Qt 5.0 is slow on the final stretch.
The GNOME developers behind the Nautilus project (now known as Files) announced earlier today, August 21st, that the Beta release of the upcoming Nautilus 3.6 is now available for download and testing.
When I was first asked to write this article, I immediately thought back to the many articles I’ve seen surrounding this now famous blog post. The blog post highlights one GNOME developer’s view about how GNOME has lost its way and needs a clear direction for the future.
Others see it differently, of course. A counterpoint to this view was written by Bryan Lunduke, who explains that trying to measure the success of a project such as GMOME using standard metrics is pointless.
He opines that if users are able to use GNOME to customize their desktops to meet their needs, then the project is in fact a success.
In this article, I will bypass that minefield entirely. Instead, I’ll focus on the desktop experience of GNOME 3 vs alternatives, while putting emphasis on the user experience – not how the underpinnings of the GNOME desktop work under the hood.
We often need to access web services from public computers, most that run Windows. There is always a possibilities, especially on public PCs, that they are infected with viruses and Trojans. It can compromise the accounts of the online services that I use from such terminals.
These conclusions are not from a formal survey. Why?
IDG and Gartner figures only look at pre-installed server operating systems, and Web browser surveys — such as StatCounter and NetMarketShare — don’t drill down far enough to say which Linux desktop distributions are the most popular.
With that, I have to turn to DistroWatch, the master Linux desktop tracking site for useful desktop Linux use data.
Before launching into this though, I should point out that the most popular end-user Linux of all is probably in your pocket and not on your desktop: Android, of course. With just over half of the U.S. smartphone market, and hundreds of millions of smartphones around the world, Android is the most popular Linux distribution ever; despite 99 percent of its users not realizing that they’re Linux users.
Hard on the heels of the 19 new distros I wrote about the other day resulting from this month’s “31 Flavors of Fun” project–not to mention major updates to Bodhi Linux and Damn Small Linux, among others–this week has seen the debut of another significant new entry as well.
When you think about the leading cloud computing companies, does the name Red Hat spring to mind? Jim Whitehurst hopes it does. In fact, the CEO of the rapidly growing, Raleigh, NC-based, open source company, is doing everything in his power to ensure that Red Hat has the widest possible portfolio of tools for your private and hybrid cloud — a collection of technologies that Whitehurst says is only rivaled by Microsoft (without the “walled garden” strategy, of course). In addition to Enterprise Linux — the flagship product — Red Hat’s growing cloud stack includes tools for server and storage virtualization, management, security, and an “enterprise-ready” version of OpenStack.
At the latest count, there are still 18 open bugs currently classed as blocking the release; these bugs have been deemed important enough that they must be fixed before the alpha can be released. The developers also called attention to the incomplete test matrices for the alpha, which suggest that not enough testing has been done on the code base.
Following yesterday’s OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion vs. Ubuntu Linux benchmarks and the OS X vs. Linux power consumption results after that, some wondered whether Ubuntu was to blame for the poor Linux showing on the Apple hardware. Unfortunately, Ubuntu isn’t alone and here’s some fresh data from Fedora 17 on the MacBook Pro.
Canonical has announced the availability of a sub release of Ubuntu 12.04. The 12.04.1 release brings support for Calxeda SOCs, so businesses can prepare for a datacentre dominated by low-energy, hyperscale servers by testing their workloads on the new hardware now.
Since Apple released OX X 10.8 “Mountain Lion” last month, there have been tests going on at Phoronix of this latest Apple operating system not only on the Retina MacBook Pro, but other Mac hardware as well. In this article is a comparison of OS X 10.8 versus Ubuntu Linux — when trying out both Ubuntu 12.04 LTS and the latest Ubuntu 12.10 development version.
Earlier today I published the long-awaited benchmarks of OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion vs. Ubuntu 12.04/12.10. The benchmarks showed strengths and weaknesses of both operating systems, resulting in the the usual spectrum of comments from Phoronix readers. Here now are the power consumption results when comparing OS X and Ubuntu Linux on Apple hardware.
Wayland and the reference Weston compositor have been updated against the upstream version 0.95 release for the packages to be found in the forthcoming Ubuntu 12.10 release.
Wayland isn’t playing any useful/official role in Ubuntu 12.10 with Canonical’s plans for a Wayland-based system compositor having been delayed to a future release, but Wayland/Weston packages continue to be available from the Ubuntu universe archive — they just aren’t too useful at this point. There are the Wayland/Weston packages and some simple demos that can be run from the Ubuntu packages, but the tool-kits packaged for Ubuntu along with other components aren’t yet being shipped by Ubuntu with the Wayland support enabled.
The Linux Mint team has revealed the code name of the next edition of this popular Linux-based distribution. Linux Mint 14 will be called Nadia.
Linux Mint 14 aka Nadia is scheduled to be released at the end November this year. The name is inspired from Kim Stanley Robinson’s Mars Trilogy, where Nadezhda ‘Nadia’ Chernyshevski is Maya’s best friend.
Clement Lefebvre, father of the Linux Mint project, proudly announced a few minutes ago, August 24th, that the codename for the upcoming Linux Mint 14 operating system will be Nadia.
Linux Mint 14 (Nadia) will be available for download at the end of November 2012, and it will be shipped with separate MATE, Cinnamon, KDE and Xfce editions. However, it has not yet been decided which desktop environment will be the default for Linux Mint 14.
With the Fuduntu project growing, a reorganization in the team was deemed as a necessary step. The reorganization will include more defined primary roles for the Fuduntu team members as well as setup team leaders for the major areas of Fuduntu.
Here are some more benchmarks of the ODROID-X, a $129 ARMv7 development board that packs four Cortex-A9 cores along with Mali-400 graphics to provide a fairly impressive punch. There’s even some comparative numbers to a Sony PlayStation 3 running Linux.
Hardware details include a 1GHz processor, 512MB RAM, 4GB internal storage, microSD expansion, and 3200mAH battery. No, it’s not half the stuff you get for the $199 Nexus 7 but it be just enough for most users to get started. Would you consider something like this for yourself or someone you know?
NASA’s Ames Research Center is working on a new project designed to drastically cut the cost of launching and operating small satellites in Low Earth Orbit (LEO). The project, known as PhoneSat, will see the Android powered Nexus One and Nexus S phones command their very own small scale spacecraft this year in a first of its kind research mission.
I will readily admit that I am an iPhone user. It sits happily beside me at all times, and I’m constantly reading about all sorts of new gizmos and games that are iOS-specific. However, I suppose it’s alright that Android users get some neat games every now and then.
Since 2010, the OsciPrime project has aimed to turn your Android smartphone or tablet into a fully functional oscilloscope. From its simple beginnings as a school project to the current run of dedicated hardware, OsciPrime is an excellent example of a open source product’s creation from start to finish.
Ready to start your Friday morning off with a mystery? LG has put up a new teaser site for an upcoming smartphone, and while details about it are still light, there are a few tidbits that ought to pique the interest of anyone that loves high-end specs. The site touts that the device features a Snapdragon S4 Pro processor, which it describes is a “second generation quad-core processor,” paired with an Adreno 320 GPU. There’s also a mention of LTE on the site. A brief teaser video has been posted to the site, but unfortunately both it and the site itself it all in Korean, so those of us that don’t speak the language can’t discern much else from the clip or the page.
The timing of the show is bad for Disney who recently announced the release of Pixar’s Open SubDiv under the Open Source Microsoft Public License and this episode implies that open source is dangerous. Given the size of company Disney is, I won’t believe that it was an organized propaganda, but it does show the writer or R&D team of the show is living on some remote island without any connection to the real words.
Japanese for “signboard” or “billboard”, Kanban is a scheduling system designed to better prioritise the individual activities of team members; it was first devised by Toyota and used for its Toyota Production System (TPS). Unlike other scheduling systems that are based on the classic “push” principle, Kanban uses the “pull” principle. Work that needs to be done on a project is shown on the Kanban board, which shows the status of the project and tasks available to be worked on. Developers can pull tasks from the board to work on and the system ensures no developer takes on too many tasks.
Red Hat has blazed a path for all open source software (OSS) companies to follow after it raked in US$1.13 billion in the fiscal year of 2012–making it the first pure-play open source company to hit the billion dollar revenue milestone.
Jeffrey Hammond, principal analyst at Forrester Research, said the company has proven it can go toe-to-toe with the enterprise market’s big boys by signing customers up to use its OSS products for mission-critical processes.
Back in April, when Citrix made its decision to cut its support for the open source OpenStack cloud computing platform and move full steam ahead with the next phase of its CloudStack strategy, stories appeared everywhere about how close the open source cloud computing race is. OpenStack, CloudStack and Eucalyptus Systems were described as being in a very tight three-horse race.
Moving technology services to the cloud has become commonplace over the last few years. But as government agencies weigh the pros and cons of various big-name cloud providers, another option has begun to surface — open source cloud computing.
One such platform is OpenStack, created by NASA and Rackspace Hosting, a data storage solution provider. Launched in July 2010, OpenStack has grown to become a global collaboration of developers and cloud computing technologists producing ubiquitous code for public and private clouds.
Attorneys for Oracle and Google met for a brief hearing on Thursday morning at the U.S. District Court of Northern California, once again to discuss the copyrightability and potential damages related to the rangeCheck code.
For those curious whether the forthcoming Oracle VirtualBox 4.2 virtualization platform delivers on any performance enhancements, at least as it pertains to Linux virtualization, here are some quick benchmarks.
Many Phoronix readers have written in asking about new VirtualBox benchmarks for the forthcoming VirtualBox 4.2 release, especially following the recent Phoronix articles showing how VMware’s graphics stack for OpenGL on virtualized guests beats VirtualBox and also how VMware Fusion generally has an advantage over VirtualBox in other workloads too. I will have more benchmarks once VirtualBox 4.2 is officially released, while for this weekend are just 4.1 vs. 4.2 benchmark results for a lone Intel Linux system.
For those that didn’t see yet, FreeBSD 9.1 Release Candidate 1 was introduced into the world on Thursday.
The first release candidate for FreeBSD 9.1-RELEASE was put out for i386, amd64, and PowerPC64 with the ISOs being available from the usual FreeBSD FTP mirrors. The FreeBSD.org release announcement has more details on updating to this release for those interested.
GIMP went through a major makeover with release 2.8, most notably the single window interface which has enhanced the user experience manifold. The team has announced the release of version 2.8.2 which is mostly focused on bug fixes so no new features have been added.
A proposal has went out to merge support for GUPC, the GNU Unified Parallel C branch, into the forthcoming GCC 4.8 compiler code-base.
Unified Parallel C (UPC) is an extension to C that’s intended for high-performance computing across large-scale parallel machines. Unified Parallel C can handle both SMP/NUMA systems with a global address space along with distributed clusters. UPC extends ISO C99 with a parallel execution model, a shared address space, synchronization primities and a memory consistency model, explicit communication primitives, and memory management primitives.
GCC 4.8 likely won’t be released until H1’2013, but there’s a number of changes building up for this next release of this leading open-source multi-language compiler.
Recently some of the GCC 4.8 work has been talked about like the Unified Parallel C proposal, the compiler’s code-base being converted to C++, improved diagnostics/error reporting, and newer hardware support, but that isn’t it.
After being in development for one decade, the PixelLight cross-platform open-source 3D application framework for use by games, simulators, and other visualization environments has reached version 1.0.
Expanded cluster and backup abilities will improve availability for Zarafa Collaboration Platform (ZCP) 7.1, which was recently released by Zarafa. The new version of the groupware solution does not include Zarafa Indexer, which was only introduced in version 7.0, as the feature’s regular text analysis of mailboxes led to performance problems; instead, the new Zarafa Search now takes care of analysis.
From Nine Inch Nails to Star Trek, open source principles are represented in much of pop culture. Ruth Suehle, community marketing leader for the Fedora Project and moderator of the Life channel at opensource.com, found this to be a great approach to explaining the open source way to people who don’t know much (or don’t want to know much) about its humble beginnings in software.
Almost daily we read about another apparently stiff financial penalty meted out for corporate malfeasance. This year corporations are on track to pay as much as $8 billion to resolve charges of defrauding the government, a record sum, according to the Department of Justice. Last year big business paid the SEC $2.8 billion to settle disputes.
As US regulators put together the final touches to the controversial Volcker Rule, Goldman Sachs’ third-quarter results are likely to reflect the benefits of one last proprietary trading hurrah from the purchase – and subsequent sale – of Knight Capital’s accidental stock portfolio.
This study asks Who are the the world’s 1 percent power elite? And to what extent do they operate in unison for their own private gains over benefits for the 99 percent? We examine a sample of the 1 percent: the extractor sector, whose companies are on the ground extracting material from the global commons, and using low-cost labor to amass wealth. These companies include oil, gas, and various mineral extraction organizations, whereby the value of the material removed far exceeds the actual cost of removal.We also examine the investment sector of the global 1 percent: companies whose primary activity is the amassing and reinvesting of capital. This sector includes global central banks, major investment money management firms, and other companies whose primary efforts are the concentration and expansion of money, such as insurance companies. Finally, we analyze how global networks of centralized power—the elite 1 percent, their companies, and various governments in their service—plan, manipulate, and enforce policies that benefit their continued concentration of wealth and power. We demonstrate how the US/NATO military-industrial-media empire operates in service to the transnational corporate class for the protection of international capital in the world.
Well-meaning proposals sometimes have a way of raising troubling questions. Case in point: A team of wireless researchers in Germany proposed a way to improve the communications abilities of first responders, the brave people who rush into disastrous situations to help save the victims.
When I was a promising young mathematician in college, I met someone from the NSA who tried to recruit me to work for the spooks in the summer. Actually, “met someone” is misleading- he located me after I had won a prize.
I didn’t know what to think, so I accepted his invitation to visit the institute, which was in La Jolla, in Southern California (I went to UC Berkeley so it wasn’t a big trip).
When I got to the building, since I didn’t have clearance, everybody had to stop working the whole time I was there. It wasn’t enough to clean their whiteboards, one of them explained, they had to wash them down with that whiteboard spray stuff, because if you look at a just-erased whiteboard in a certain way you can decipher what had been written on it.
I met a bunch of people, maybe 6 or 7. They all told me how nice it was to work there, how the weather was beautiful, how the math problems were interesting. It was strangely consistent, but who knows, perhaps also true.
One thing I’d already learned before coming is that there are many layers of work that happen before the math people in La Jolla are given problems to do. First, the actual problem is chosen, then the “math” of the problem is extracted from the problem, and third it’s cleansed so that nobody can tell what the original application is.
Knowing this (and I was never contradicted when I explained that process), I asked each of them the same question: how do you feel about the fact that you don’t know what problem you’re actually solving?
Out of the 6 or 7 people I met, everyone but one person responded along the lines, “I believe everything the United States Government does is good.” The last guy said, “yeah, that bothers me. I am honestly seriously considering leaving.”
Bob Quinn, one of the top AT&T lobbyists (“Senior Vice President-Federal Regulatory”) in a company famous for lobbyists, must have drawn the short straw at the office staff meeting this week, because he got a truly unenviable job. Quinn’s task was to explain to the world how AT&T’s plan to keep blocking FaceTime video chats on some data plans but to unblock it on others was a good thing for customers, how AT&T was in “a learning mode,” and—most importantly—why the decision was absolutely, completely legal despite what the unwashed peasants in “public advocacy” work would have you believe.
Summary: Antifeatures that are associated with spying have been included in Vista 8, raising concerns for those who need protection in their private lives
THERE are many reasons to believe that Vista 8 will fail just like its predecessors (after XP).
Vista was not just horrible but it also introduced massive violations of privacy, which ought to deter and scare businesses. Having Vista or later installed is like having Stalin on your hard-drive. It ‘phones home’ a lot, gathering information about the users. This information is stored remotely and indefinitely.
“It ‘phones home’ a lot, gathering information about the users.”Now we learn that Vista 8 goes much further than Vista. It uses insecure means to help Microsoft spy on the users’ activity. To quote: “There are a few serious problems here. The big problem is that Windows 8 is configured to immediately tell Microsoft about every app you download and install. This is a very serious privacy problem, specifically because Microsoft is the central point of authority and data collection/retention here and therefore becomes vulnerable to being served judicial subpoenas or National Security Letters intended to monitor targeted users. This situation is exacerbated when Windows 8 is deployed in countries experiencing political turmoil or repressive political situations.”
“We meanwhile learn that nobody is expected to win the case, so at the end of the day Apple will have wasted its time.”Korea hurts customers by removing products: “A SOUTH KOREAN COURT has Imposed bans on a number of mobile devices from rival companies Apple and Samsung’s, having found that both firms infringe each other’s patents.” Mutual destruction.
We meanwhile learn that nobody is expected to win the case, so at the end of the day Apple will have wasted its time. The jury will decide soon despite alleged difficulties, but it is not known when. As CNN put it: “You can probably expect deliberations to continue into next week. If there are still holdouts a week from Friday, however, the prospect of a spending one more weekend with Apple v. Samsung hanging over their heads could bring the jury to a rapid consensus.” █
Update: Minutes ago we found out that a decision had just been made and Apple’s allies from Redmond celebrate. Apple and Microsoft collaborate in attacking Android and collecting patents, as we showed before (e.g. CPTN, Nortel, cross-licensing, other pacts).