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03.28.13

Links 28/3/2013: Hands-on With “Firefox OS”

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

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Early April Fools Joke By Infoworld: M$ and Lenovo in Love

    As Lenovo clearly ships a lot of GNU/Linux and Chrome OS PCs even in China and as far as I know Lenovo has never shipped unlicensed software, I think this is InfoWorld making its own news or playing an early April Fools joke. It’s probably the latter… Whether it’s just a renewal of the old agreement from 2006 to “recommend” that other OS, I don’t know, but it’s a very bad joke.

  • Linux Foundation Training Prepares the International Space Station for Linux Migration

    It’s hard to get tech support 400 kilometers away from the Earth, which is why Keith Chuvala of United Space Alliance, a NASA contractor deeply involved in Space Shuttle and International Space Station (ISS) operations, decided to migrate to Linux. As leader of the Laptops and Network Integration Teams, Chuvala oversees the developers in charge of writing and integrating software for the Station’s “OpsLAN” – a network of laptops that provide the ISS crew with vital capabilities for day-to-day operations, from telling the astronauts where they are, to inventory control of the equipment used, to interfacing with the cameras that capture photos and videos.

  • You are not safe

    Linux is the perfect platform for this kind of experimentation. The reason why the operating system is so secure, for example, is because any developer can look at the source code and work out what’s happening. The arcane and hidden data transfers that make up the World Wide Web should be no different. In this issue, we investigate some of the tools that can reveal this hidden world, as well as showing you how easy it can be for these tools to be turned against us. And just like with Linux, the solution to these weaknesses are increased transparency, awareness and education. It’s like debugging the internet!

  • Linux Format 170 On Sale Today – Hack the Web!

    The internet is full of unpleasant people who would love nothing more than to steal your passwords, crack into your WordPress site and generally make a nuisance of themselves at your expense. So we learned their black arts so that you can protect yourself against them, and in the process we discovered that protection rackets have moved online through the power of DDOS attacks.

  • Big business buys into big Linux

    That shouldn’t come as any surprise. IDG, for example, found in the last quarter of 2012 that while overall server revenue is only growing at 3.1 percent year over year, Linux experienced 12.7 percent year-over-year growth for the quarter, while Windows only increased 3.2 percent and Unix was down 24.1 percent.

  • Linux Foundation Report Shows Enterprises Warming Up to Linux

    Just this week I did a post on how much in demand Linux skills are in the job market. They are in demand, of course, because Linux is increasingly being used in enterprises–and not just at the server level. New research from The Linux Foundation in its report “Linux Adoption: Third Annual Survey of World’s Largest Enterprise Linux Users” confirms this fact.

    “We see the growing success of Linux adoption in the enterprise, especially as it’s used for the most important areas of business, leading to the rise of Linux and collaborative development across many industries,” said Amanda McPherson, vice president of marketing and developer services, The Linux Foundation, in a statement. “Having a realistic understanding of where Linux is gaining traction in the enterprise helps to inform vendors and users about how they can work together to advance Linux and the technologies it supports.”

  • Linux Adoption Continues to Grow

    Linux adoption for mission-critical deployments and the cloud continues to grow in 2013. That’s the top-line finding from a new Enterprise End User Report from the Linux Foundation.

  • Desktop

  • Server

    • DreamWorks Animation The Croods Tops 9,100 Linux Render-Years

      The Croods, which took #1 in the box office this weekend with an estimated $44.7 million, used a powerful Linux render farm to create the film

    • Shotwell developers aim to solve Linux’s e-mail problems

      The developers behind the Shotwell photo manager for Linux-based operating systems are setting their sights on a weak spot of the Linux desktop: e-mail.

      Yorba, the creator of Shotwell, has turned to crowdfunding site Indiegogo in an attempt to raise $100,000 toward the e-mail client, named “Geary.” After two days, Yorba has raised about $8,000.

    • Is a New Approach to Email Just What Linux Needs?

      This week, some surprisingly positive data arrived about Linux’s growing volume of welcome in enterprises. But if you ask many people why Linux isn’t more entrenched at enterprises, they might cite compatibility issues with widely used platforms such as Microsoft Office, support concerns, and more. One longstanding concern about Linux in the enterprise has surrounded the fact that email has never been really enterprise-grade on Linux platforms.

      As a matter of fact, some of the more promising efforts to pull off smart open source email have been left in the gutter. Mozilla, for example, has pulled way back on its efforts with Thunderbird. That’s why it’s interesting to note that some of the respected developers behind the Shotwell photo manager application are working on an email idea called Geary.

      We’ve covered Shotwell many times and it is very popular with Linux users. The developers behind it are talented.

  • Audiocasts/Shows

  • Kernel Space

    • Kernel Log: Coming in 3.9 (part 1)

      The Linux kernel can now be set up to use SSDs as cache for hard drives; Btrfs has native RAID 5 and 6 support. The kernel development team has also resolved two performance problems caused by previous changes.

      On Sunday, Linus Torvalds released the fourth pre-release version of Linux kernel 3.9. In his release notes, he noted that development has not yet settled down and called for testing of the RC.

    • Linux Foundation Becomes Sponsor
  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments/WMs

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

      • KDE developers working on a new network manager based on QML

        KDE developers are working on a brand new network manager for this most advanced ‘desktop environment’. One of the reasons behind this new network manager, as the developer Jan Grulich explains is “Because the source code of the old one is complicated and it’s not simple to fix or add something, so we decided to start writing the new one from scratch.”

    • GNOME Desktop/GTK

      • Top 10 New Features in GNOME 3.8

        The latest iteration of the popular GNOME desktop, version 3.8, sees release today – but what are notable changes and improvements should you be looking out for?

        Here’s a list of our 10 favourite changes – in no specific order – new to this release.

      • GNOME 3.8 Released – See What’s New [Video, Screenshots]

        GNOME 3.8 has been released today, the new version bringing many new features and enhancements, including a new application view and overhauled window layout for GNOME Shell, new setting panels for privacy, search and notifications and of course, many updates to the core GNOME apps like Web (Epiphany), Boxes, Documents and more.

  • Distributions

    • New Releases

      • New features in Cairo-Dock 3.2

        The developers of the popular panel launcher application Cairo-Dock have updated it to version 3.2. Following around six months of work, the new version offers improved multi-display support and includes a new application for producing screenshots which should eventually be able to replace gnome-screenshot. The new Sound-Effects plugin adds sounds to some dock actions. Remote folders (such as through Samba or FTP) and encrypted drives can now be managed via the Shortcuts applet.

      • Cairo-Dock 3.2 release!
    • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandrake/Mandriva Family

    • Arch Family

    • Red Hat Family

      • Red Hat reports record $1.3 billion in revenues

        The leading open source company Red Hat has once again reported the impressive revenues of US$ 1.3 billion for the fiscal year 2013. It was 17% up year-over-year. The company reported fourth quarter subscription revenue revenue of $348 million.

        Jim Whitehurst, President and Chief Executive Officer of Red Hat said, “We continued to see momentum with large deals in Q4, closing a record number of deals in excess of $5 million and $10 million. We now provide solutions to over 90o/o of Fortune 500 companies as well as tens of thousands of smaller companies. New customer additions coupled with renewing and up-selling our existing customer base enabled us to exceed the billion dollar milestone in both subscription revenue and deferred revenues for the first time.”

      • Red Hat, Inc. (RHT), Oracle Corporation (ORCL), and the Evolution of OpenStack
      • Red Hat’s Q4: Misses revenue but wins on earnings

        Shares drop in after hours trading as the open source software provider squeaked out solid earnings but missed the revenue target.

    • Debian Family

      • The Future of Debian

        Interesting insights into the future of Debian can be seen in interviews with candidates for Debian Project Leader in Debian’s new official blog.

        The candidates are distinguishing themselves with new ideas to expose the glory of Debian GNU/Linux to the world or to improve operations or to involve a wider community in the production, testing, distribution and promotion of Free Software. It seems to me that no matter who wins the most support, Debian is ready to take a bigger role at the centre of the FLOSS world.

      • SparkyLinux 2.1 “GameOver” is out

        Brand new, two egged SparkyLinux 2.1 ‘GameOver’ is out.
        It’s the second, special edition of SparkyLinux ‘GameOver” released for Easter 2013.

        It has been directly built on SparkyLinux 2.1 ‘Eris’ and Debian testing ‘Wheezy’.
        All packages have been synchronized with Debian testing repos of 24/03/2013.

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • MapR, Canonical bring Hadoop to Ubuntu

            MapR, a “Big 3″ Hadoop provider, is partnering with Canonical to make Hadoop an even bigger phenomenon than it is already. Specifically, the companies are making an Ubuntu-integrated MapR M3 distribution available for download.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • First Yocto compatible Carrier Grade Linux

      Wind River announced today that it has registered the Wind River Linux Carrier Grade (CG) profile for compliance with the Linux Foundation’s Carrier Grade Linux (CGL) v5.0 requirements. Accordingly, the company claims Wind River Linux to be the first Yocto Compatible CGL-registered Linux distribution.

    • Power-stingy SODIMM-style module runs ARM Linux
    • Leap Motion Controller now Linux compatible
    • Yocto compatible carrier grade Linux from Wind River

      Wind River has introduced the Wind River Linux Carrier Grade (CG) Profile for the latest version of Wind River Linux. Formally registered for the CGL 5.0 specification with the Linux Foundation, the profile is the first delivery of Carrier Grade Linux functionalities on top of a Yocto Project Compatibleproduct, says Wind River.

    • Phones

      • Small Cheap Computers Never Looked So Good

        Oh my. 8 cores in an ARMed CPU/SoC, 4 at 1.2-1.8gHz and 4 at 1.2gHz with 2gB RAM… 28nm allows all that computing power to sip juice from the battery. It’s certainly competitive with legacy PCs of just a few years ago and it can fit in a pocket or tablet. Linux makes all this run. Android makes it fit on tiny screens with fingers and do amazing things with hundreds of thousands of “apps” and Samsung tweaks that a bit to make it even more useful. Quit drooling on your keyboard!

      • Automotive infotainment gains TIZEN rich-media support

        PathPartner Technology has joined the GENIVI Alliance with an eye toward marketing its embedded multimedia software and design services to developers of next-generation automotive in-vehicle infotainment (IVI) devices.

      • Ballnux

      • Android

        • Amazon smartphone reported to feature 4.7-inch display

          The rumored Amazon smartphone will feature a 4.7-inch display, according to a new DigitTimes report. Yeah – we know that the source is not always that accurate, but whatever…we’re passing along.

        • Amazon Kindle Fire tablets get X-Ray for TV

          Amazon today announced that its popular and rather cool X-Ray service has expanded into the realm of television. Ever find yourself watching a TV show and wondering, “Where have I seen that guy before”? This is the sort of app and feature that answers those questions.

          Tied to IMDb, the X-Ray service runs on Kindle and Wii U devices and enables Amazon Instant Video viewers to quickly ID actors and learn more about them. Sorry guys, it won’t work on your standard phone or tablet; you must purchase and watch through Amazon’s Instant Videos.

        • An introduction to using Android as an embedded OS

          An extensive slide presentation on using Android in embedded systems is available for free download on the website of Free Electronics. The presentation provides an efficient technical introduction and overview of the process of developing embedded Android software, on both the OS and application levels.

    • Sub-notebooks/Tablets

Free Software/Open Source

  • OpenKM Teams with Standing Cloud to Bring Open Source Web-based Document Management to the Cloud

    OpenKM, a leading developer of open source, web-based enterprise document management solutions, today announced the launch of OpenKM Cloud, a new cloud-based offering that makes deploying and managing OpenKM fast, simple and affordable in the cloud.

  • 75 Open Source Apps To Replace Popular Security Software

    Hackers seem to be successfully attacking almost everyone these days. Already this year, the news has included high-profile cyberattacks targeting Facebook, Microsoft, Apple, Chase, Evernote, The Federal Reserve, Twitter, The Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg, Reuters, The New York Times and other companies.

    While no security software can provide complete protection from every cyberattack, the open source community has developed a variety of tools that home users, small businesses and enterprises can use to improve their security profile. Many of these open source projects are of a very high quality—in fact, many have won awards and some have been incorporated into commercial applications.

  • Big Switch Shines a Switch Light on Open Source OpenFlow Switching

    At the core of the Software Defined Networking (SDN) revolution is the OpenFlow protocol. Enabling OpenFlow on physical switches is something that multiple vendors have been working toward. Enabling OpenFlow on virtual switches is now Switch Lightsomething that Big Switch, a startup led by the creators of OpenFlow, is now pushing forward.

  • Interview with Emil Ivov about Jitsi, a VoIP softphone supporting IPv6 and DNSSEC
  • Thinking about Code Review in Free Software

    Code review can be a bit of a recipe for drama. There was a large-ish amount of drama in a close project quite recently that stemmed from patch review, and it got me thinking about how we handle this in free software.

    In free software code review, along with other practices that we call “agile practices” (such as continuous integration, unit testing, behavior driven design, test driven development) is a relatively new thing in some projects, especially those on the desktop stack.

  • Events

    • Openmobility 2013 to spotlight growing DIY, Maker trends
    • Luminaries to Tackle the Tech Skills Crisis on International Flight

      Can a group of 100 certified tech innovators, including Silicon Valley CEOs, venture capitalists and analysts, sit down together for a few hours and solve the world’s crisis in tech skills? That’s the question that a British Airways program called UnGrounded is asking, and the way the program intends to get an answer is quite swashbuckling. Through Ungrounded, 100 tech luminaries will board a flight on June 12 in San Francisco, headed for London, where they will tackle the tech skills problem in a challenge sponsored by Ideo, a technology design firm.

  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • Ad industry threatens Firefox users with more ads if Mozilla moves on tracking plans

        The online ad industry has attacked Mozilla over its decision to block third-party cookies in a future release of Firefox, calling the move “dangerous and highly disturbing,” and claiming that it will result in more ads shown to users.

      • Firefox getting smarter about third-party cookies

        https://blog.mozilla.org/privacy/2013/02/25/firefox-getting-smarter-about-third-party-cookies/

      • Hands-on with Mozilla’s Web-based “Firefox OS” for smartphones

        Launching a new mobile OS is a difficult project since the market leaders, Android and iOS, have such a big lead. Even Microsoft, with its near-infinite financial resources and vast ecosystem of complementary products, has struggled to gain traction. And new entrants face a chicken-and-egg problem: developers don’t want to write apps for a platform without many users, while users don’t want to buy a phone without many apps.

      • Firefox and Ubuntu go Mobile

        A major announcement this year at Mobile World Congress was the Firefox Operating System (OS), built by Mozilla, the same company that brought you the world’s leading browser until Google claimed the throne with its web browser, Chrome.

        Firefox OS runs on HTML 5 through the Firefox browser’s engine, which handles demands more efficiently in weaker phones. It features the typical grid of apps set on top of a four app bar at the bottom.

      • Hands-on with Mozilla’s Web-based “Firefox OS” for smartphones

        The default mapping app bundled with the Geeksphone is HERE Maps, which was developed by Nokia. The application has improved steadily since we started using it. It’s gone from unusable to functional but bare-bones.

      • Mozilla Open Source Effort Accelerates Browsers for Gaming and More

        Gaming is among the most resource-consuming and complex of all computing tasks. Historically gaming has been the realm of native code running on bare metal operating systems, but thanks to a new effort from Mozilla, real gaming via a web browser is now a reality.

  • SaaS/Big Data

    • OpenStack Open Source Cloud Project Setup Set for a Shakeup?
    • What is Open Source Cloud?

      For all the talk about cloud, it might come as a surprise to many in the industry that “cloud” is not a well-understood term. It’s often perceived as “just a buzzword” or something without a lot of substance. While the term can be abused, it’s actually an important concept and it’s certainly not just a passing fad.

      In talking to people following the Apache CloudStack graduation, and meeting with the local Linux User Group (LUG), it dawned on me that cloud still bears some explanation. Let’s take a look the standard definition, some types of clouds, and why it matters.

  • Databases

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

  • Funding

    • The ‘Love Linux’ Campaign: The TuxDrive & The TuxPoster
    • First Ouya Consoles Shipping to Backers

      The early bird gets the worm, or in this case, the new portable home gaming system. Ouya’s $99 Android-based console is now shipping to early backers, and is expected to hit shelves this summer for all consumers.
      Ouya games include action, sports, arcade, and indie, played directly on your TV. Big-name publishers like Square Enix and Namco Bandai have already signed on with the company, which also snagged independent developers like Tripwire Interactive and Adam Saltsman.
      The Ouya may seem like the underdog in the established console market, but the little machine is aiming to disrupt the entire home gaming platform.

    • Mini Android PC hitches a ride on a Kickstarter rocket
  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

    • Document Freedom Day 2013 celebrated in 30 countries

      The Free Software Foundation Europe (FSFE) is running its annual Document Freedom Day campaign today to raise awareness of the importance of open standards. This year’s Document Freedom Day involves over 50 groups from 30 countries and focuses on open standards in web-based streaming technologies, especially on increasing the awareness and usage of HTML5. This year’s campaign is sponsored by Google and openSUSE.

    • Document Freedom Day from Brussels to Taiwan: Open Standards celebrated in 30 countries

      In 30 countries around the world, activists are celebrating Open Standards on today’s Document Freedom Day, an annual campaign to promote Open Standards. More than 50 groups are hosting events around the world, from Brussels to Nicaragua to Nepal.

      Open Standards are crucial to ensure that different computer systems can work together, and that users can access documents regardless of the computing platform or device they use. They are the foundation of the Internet and the World Wide Web.

  • Project Releases

  • Public Services/Government

    • Antiword: Read MS Word Documents in Your Terminal [Linux]
    • Open source and Latvian Geospatial Information Agency intertwined

      At the Latvian Geospatial Information Agency in Riga, all parts of the organisations use open source. Linux, to begin with, provides a stable operating system for its databases, both proprietary and the open source alternative Postgresql. Naturally the agency uses all kinds of open source solutions for its Geographic Information Systems, including Postgis and Quantum Gis.

    • Winning a presidential election the open source way

      One of the ways Obama won the 2012 election was with technology. It wasn’t the only way, but technology offered one thing that feet on the street couldn’t: a force multiplier effect. The technology used during the campaign to accept donations and manage volunteers was based on open source and open standards. Open source helped the campaign accomplish several things. It enabled the team building the technology to create a culture of code, innovate faster, and solve problems the open source way.

  • Openness/Sharing

  • Programming

    • Eclipse Community Awards winners announced

      On the opening day of EclipseCon 2013, the Eclipse Foundation handed out the annual awards to the top individuals, projects and technologies in the Eclipse ecosystem. The individual and project awards were selected in an online vote of peers, while a judging panel selected the winners of the technology awards.

    • Perl: Jewel in the Rough or Scourge of IT?

      Perhaps it’s the rapid pace of change here in the tech world, but it seems scarcely a day can go by without someone declaring some technology or another “dead.”

      Take the netbook, for example. People have been saying for years it’s dead; today, however, we have the Chromebook phenomenon.

      The command line is another popular target, of course, but few can compete with the Linux desktop itself, the death of which has been trumpeted so many times now that Linux Girl has lost count. Amazing how something that’s “dead” can keep on satisfying so many users!

      Well, recently in the Linux community there’s been occasion to discuss another purported “death” — or at least one that’s often wished for. The “victim” this time? None other than Perl.

  • Standards/Consortia

Leftovers

  • “For Lawyers, Joining the Supreme Court Bar is a Vanity Trip”

    The Associated Press has this story on what it means for lawyers to join the U.S. Supreme Court bar. As the article suggests, being a member of the Supreme Court bar doesn’t mean much. Pretty much any lawyer who pays the $200 is admitted, at least if they have been in good standing in a state bar for three years and get two other bar members to sign on.

  • Security

    • Rather Than Fix The CFAA, House Judiciary Committee Planning To Make It Worse… Way Worse

      So, you know all that talk about things like Aaron’s Law and how Congress needs to fix the CFAA? Apparently, the House Judiciary Committee has decided to raise a giant middle finger to folks who are concerned about abuses of the CFAA. Over the weekend, they began circulating a “draft” of a “cyber-security” bill that is so bad that it almost feels like the Judiciary Committee is doing it on purpose as a dig at online activists who have fought back against things like SOPA, CISPA and the CFAA. Rather than fix the CFAA, it expands it. Rather than rein in the worst parts of the bill, it makes them worse. And, from what we’ve heard, the goal is to try to push this through quickly, with a big effort underway for a “cyberweek” in the middle of April that will force through a bunch of related bills. You can see the draft of the bill here (or embedded below. Let’s go through some of the pieces.

    • Aaron Swartz case an issue in Mass. Senate race

      The federal prosecution and suicide of Aaron Swartz has galvanized Internet activists and prompted attacks by hackers. Now it’s dividing candidates in Massachusetts’ special U.S. Senate campaign.
      Among the toughest critics of the case against Swartz is Republican Senate candidate Daniel Winslow, a Norfolk state representative and former judge. Winslow said the case shows the dangers of allowing prosecutors unchecked authority.

    • Draft House Judiciary cybersecurity bill would stiffen anti-hacking law

      A draft cybersecurity bill circulating among House Judiciary Committee members would stiffen a computer hacking law used to bring charges against Internet activist Aaron Swartz.

      The bill draft would tighten penalties for cyber crimes and establish a standard for when companies would have to notify consumers that their personal data has been hacked, according to a copy obtained by The Hill.

    • Three Things You May Not Get About the Aaron Swartz Case
    • Anti-spam group at epicenter of one of worst cyberassaults in history
    • Massive cyberattack hits Internet users
  • Defence/Police/Secrecy/Aggression

  • Cablegate

    • Could WikiLeaks, Not Spamhaus, Be the Target of Cyber Attacks?

      According to reports, there’s a beef between anti-spam operation Spamhaus and Cyberbunker, a Dutch Web host. Spamhaus claims Cyberbunker unleashed a barrage of spambots that is pounding the Internet at an alleged 300GB/s, apparently at enough choke points to slow everything down.

      [...]

      Assange’s various stinks with large government organizations, including the United States, changes the story drastically if you ask me.

      Three links sit at the bottom of the page: City Hall Fights Back, Spamhaus Blackmail War, and Swat Team Raids Bunker. All are worth reading—if you have the time to wait for the pages to load. It’s as if Cyberbunker was the one suffering from a denial of service attack.

    • Top Swedish prosecutor leaves Assange case

      The top Swedish prosecutor pursuing sexual assault charges against Julian Assange has abruptly left the case and one of Mr Assange’s accusers has sacked her lawyer.

      The turmoil in the Swedish Prosecution Authority’s effort to extradite Mr Assange comes as another leading Swedish judge prepares to deliver an unprecedented public lecture in Australia next week on the WikiLeaks publisher’s case.

    • Assange legal shakeup: Prosecutor walks, Supreme Court judge to speak out on case
    • Assange sex crimes accuser fires her lawyer

      Australian media reported on Thursday that the woman was not happy with how her lawyer Claes Borgström had handled the case when speaking with the media.

      While her application to a Swedish court to change lawyer is not available to the public, Borgström addressed the report in a statement.

      “It has been impossible to avoid contact with the media in this case. When I have been in contact with the media it has been with the approval of my client, sometimes she has asked me to do so,” he wrote.

      Borgström, Sweden’s former equality ombudsman (Jämställdhetsombudsmannen), is no stranger to taking on controversial cases.

      His former client has reportedly asked that lawyer Elisabeth Massi Fritz take over.

    • Top state prosecutor dropped from Assange case as accuser sacks lawyer

      Marianne Nye, a high-profile Swedish prosecutor, has left the case unexpectedly and been replaced by a less seasoned collaegue, Ingred Isgren. The reasons for the departure have not been disclosed.

    • The War Against Bradley Manning — A War Against All Who Speak Out Against Injustice

      Time and again, throughout America’s history, individuals with a passion for truth and a commitment to justice have opted to defy the unjust laws and practices of the American government in order to speak up against slavery, segregation, discrimination, and war. Even when their personal safety and freedom were on the line, these individuals spoke up, knowing they would be chastised, ridiculed, arrested, branded traitors and even killed.

  • Finance

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • How ‘Unlikely’ Is Mark Sanford’s Comeback Really?

      A South Carolina Republican primary for an open congressional seat leaves former South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford the favorite to win an April 2 GOP runoff.

      Sanford’s return to politics, after an extramarital affair and elaborate lies to cover it up, has prompted discussion about how unlikely such a comeback is for a staunch Republican in a party steeped in so-called “family values.”

  • Censorship

    • Twitter sued £32m for refusing to reveal anti-semites

      The case revolves around a hashtag — #unbonjuif (“a good Jew”) — which became the third-most popular on the site in October 2012. The UEJF took Twitter to court, demanding that those who had tweeted anti-semitic remarks using the hashtag be named by Twitter so the police could prosecute them for hate speech.

    • Washington Post Agreed To Withhold Acting Clandestine Service Chief’s Name At CIA’s Request

      The Washington Post revealed Wednesday in a front-page story that a woman currently running the clandestine service had signed off on a controversial 2005 decision “to destroy videotapes of prisoners being subjected to treatment critics have called torture.”

      The woman, the first to hold the position in the agency’s history, replaced John Bennett last month on an acting basis. Bennett’s name wasn’t kept secret when he was promoted to chief in July 2010. But the Washington Post didn’t identify the woman, noting that the high-ranking official “remains undercover and cannot be named.”

    • German court stirs racial tensions in neo-Nazi murder trial
    • Turkish Media Exclusion in Neo-Nazi Trial a ‘Global Embarrassment’

      A scandal is brewing in Germany over the refusal of a Munich court to provide the Turkish media with reserved seats at an upcoming neo-Nazi murder trial. German editorialists claim bureaucracy is getting in the way of needed transparency and could damage the country’s image.

    • Neo-Nazi trial harms Germany’s image in Turkey

      Criticism is growing in Turkey that Turkish media have not been admitted to the forthcoming trial of the NSU terror group, eight of whose victims were Turks. Experts are warning of damage to Germany’s image.

  • Privacy

    • Debate Continues Over Whether FBI Should Monitor Cloud Conversations

      It could be that Stallman has a point. There are widespread reports this week, after a public address from FBI officials, that the FBI has made Gmail surveillance a top priority for this year. Surveillance efforts like these could start extending to Google Voice, Dropbox and other applications as well.

    • Google’s Google problem

      GOOGLE is killing Google Reader. That may not matter much to many of you; use of Google Reader [a tool, by the way, for reading online content via RSS] was concentrated among a small group of relatively intense users. As it happens, that small group includes quite a lot of people who write for or as part of their living (it’s the second tab I open most days, after Gmail). And so Google Reader has been mourned over, angrily at times, a bit more than the many other Google services that have come and gone with little ado.

    • Google never forgets: Seventh Circuit finds no right to force search engines to block access to embarrassing public records
    • The Story of the ‘NSA Four’; Whistleblower Tour Rolls Through Indiana: Daily Whistleblower News

      This article details the story of the ‘NSA Four’ – including GAP clients Tom Drake, J. Kirk Wiebe and William Binney – featuring insight from their attorney, GAP National Security & Human Rights Director Jesselyn Radack. The four tried to expose multi-billion dollar waste and fraud – involving a highly unethical, invasive and illegal information surveillance system called Trailblazer – while at the NSA. Over the course of the next decade, they endured intense legal harassment as the NSA attempted to cover its tracks and save itself from the embarrassing exposure for closing down a separate program – this one legal, ethical, and inexpensive – that could have potentially prevented the terrorist attacks on 9/11.

    • CISPA Author Rogers

      When it was originally introduced in November 2011, CISPA would have allowed companies to pass information to the National Security Agency. The bill was reintroduced this February. According to the Electronic Frontier Foundation, which strongly opposes the bill, CISPA would have allowed companies to “hand ‘cyber threat information’ to any government agency with or without limitations on what agency can receive the information.”

    • Internal NSA magazine ‘Cryptolog’ gets limited declassification
    • Can You Crack The NSA’s Top-Secret Crossword Puzzles?
    • The social media shaped hole in surveillance law

      Over the last decade there has been an increasing change in the nature of surveillance – particularly the ability to search online, through social networks and through semi-public sources of information, reinforcing the need for the law to be reformed to protect the public from unwarranted surveillance.

      What needs to be made very clear is that just because information is on the internet, it does not necessarily follow that the police should collect and analyse it. It is essential that it the gathering of information is proportionate, necessary, balanced against the need of police to do their job, allows for a free and open internet and meets the public’s expectations of privacy.

    • FBI Pursuing Real-Time Gmail Spying Powers as “Top Priority” for 2013

      Despite the pervasiveness of law enforcement surveillance of digital communication, the FBI still has a difficult time monitoring Gmail, Google Voice, and Dropbox in real time. But that may change soon, because the bureau says it has made gaining more powers to wiretap all forms of Internet conversation and cloud storage a “top priority” this year.

      Last week, during a talk for the American Bar Association in Washington, D.C., FBI general counsel Andrew Weissmann discussed some of the pressing surveillance and national security issues facing the bureau. He gave a few updates on the FBI’s efforts to address what it calls the “going dark” problem—how the rise in popularity of email and social networks has stifled its ability to monitor communications as they are being transmitted. It’s no secret that under the Electronic Communications Privacy Act, the feds can easily obtain archive copies of emails. When it comes to spying on emails or Gchat in real time, however, it’s a different story.

  • Civil Rights

    • AUMF Hunger Strike Called to Demand Repeal of 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force PL 107-40

      …military force to detain and hold indefinitely without charge or trial American citizens on American soil

    • Larry Grathwohl: An Extraordinary Life from the Weather Underground to the FBI and beyond

      Regarding what portions of my book are as significant today as they were in the past I would suggest the readers of “:Bringing Down America” arrive at their own conclusions. As for myself, I see the objectives and goals of the weatherman to be the same today as they were 30 years ago and the only difference is the use of politics versus violence.

    • The Natural Selection of American Citizens

      These are the same people who are clueless to the existence of various legislation such as the NDAA, the military commissions act of 2006, and the Patriot Act, among others, that legalize the indefinite detention of terror suspects, that eliminate habeas corpus and give the prosecutor the power to incarcerate someone AFTER acquittal, as some examples. They think that applies only to terrorists (are you too, or will you be, a terror suspect?). They also don’t know or care about the executive orders Bush, Obama, and other presidents have signed, designed, in one way or another, to implement martial law in Amerika if Americans resist the tyranny.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • ‘Monsanto Protection Act’ Sneaks Through Senate

      When the Senate passed a budget resolution Wednesday that appears to prevent some of the potential damage from sequestration, the Continuing Resolution included several food- and agriculture-related earmarks.
      But one inclusion in particular is especially controversial. The “biotech rider” would require the USDA to approve the harvest and sale of crops from genetically modified seed even if a court has ruled the environmental studies on the crop were inadequate. This aspect of the bill infuriated many sustainable food and agriculture groups, who nicknamed the bill the “Monsanto Protection Act.”

    • Copyrights

      • Writing Open Source Software? Make Sure You Know Your Copyright Rights
      • Lawsuit claiming MMS services are like Napster finally fails

        Luvdarts LLC created a kind of MMS advertising that was designed to be forwarded to friends’ cell phones, a sort of digital “greeting card” that often included discounts. But the company only wanted its ads forwarded exactly one time—and Luvdarts really meant it. When the cards were forwarded more than once, that was copyright infringement in the company’s view. In 2010, it filed a lawsuit saying that cell phone companies should actually take responsibility for their users’ alleged infringement. Today, that lawsuit finally fell apart at an appeals court.

      • Prenda lawyer has a history of unusual class action clients

        Paul Hansmeier, widely regarded as a ringleader for the prolific copyright trolling firm Prenda Law, has been having a rough year. After a Minnesota man accused his firm of identity theft, Hansmeier gave remarkably evasive answers to questions posed by defense attorneys. Upon reading the transcript, a judge declared that “someone has a lot to hide.” The judge has since ordered Hansmeier and his Prenda colleagues to his courtroom on April 2. Prenda has begun to backpedal, dismissing pending copyright cases around the country.

      • Government Can Keep Key Emails With Hollywood Lobbyists About ‘Six Strikes’ Secret

        While we keep hearing folks in the entertainment industry and their supporters in DC talk about how great it is that the “six strikes” “Copyright Alert System” (CAS) was a “voluntary” agreement between industry players, one of the worst kept secrets in the world was that the White House was heavily involved. They basically helped Hollywood out and at least hinted strongly at the fact that if no “voluntary” agreement came through, legislation might have to be put in place (creating a novel definition of “voluntary”). Specifically, it came out that Victoria Espinel, the White House’s IP Enforcement Coordinator (IPEC), had been emailing with people about the program.

      • Copyright Lobby: The Public Has ‘No Place In Policy Discussions’

        “To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts.” That is the purpose of Article 1, Section 8, Clause 8 of the Constitution, which is sometimes referred to as the “copyright clause” (or “the patent clause”), which enables both areas of law to be created via Congress. It’s also the part that is most often ignored. As we’ve discussed, the whole purpose of this clause is to make it clear that the public are the sole stakeholders when it comes to proper policy making decisions regarding these laws. However, with this new push for comprehensive copyright reform, it appears that the copyright lobby is already working on ways to make sure that the public is marginalized in the discussion.

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