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06.17.14

Links 17/6/2014: More Games, Plasma 5 Demos

Posted in News Roundup at 4:38 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • HP’s The Machine Open Source OS: Truly Revolutionary

    Last week, Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) announced its plan to build a revolutionary new type of computer called The Machine. And here’s what makes it truly revolutionary, in all senses of the word: The Machine will run an open source operating system developed in universities, as well as Linux and Android.

  • Linux professionals use tweak tools to customize their OS, and so can you

    Where Windows has utilities, Linux has tweak tools. And whether you’re a Linux pro or a recent refugee from Windows XP, they can help you makeA Ubuntu 14.04 LTS “Trusty Tahr” (the latest and greatest offering from Linux distro pioneer Canonical) really start to feel like home.

    Customizability has long been one of Linux’s most compelling features–particularly when compared with proprietary alternatives such as Windows and OS X–but the tweak tools out there today let you refine the OS even further. And if you’re making the migration to Linux on your workplace PCs, tweak tools can help ease the transition.

  • Server

    • IBM’s Empowerment of SAP HANA

      SAP’s and IBM’s strategies around HANA emphasize how a unified in-memory platform can deliver the goods in both analytics and common line-of-business applications. That’s all good — but just as important will be the increasing competition that viable Power-based HANA solutions should inspire in the marketplace. Analytics and Big Data belong everywhere, not just in enterprise or BI ivory towers.

    • Linode Unveils $10/Month Linux Cloud Hosting Plan with SSD Storage

      In celebration of its 11th anniversary, cloud host Linode has slashed its prices. Users can now purchase hosting plans on Linux-powered servers with SSD storage starting at $10 per month.

      The offering was made possible through a $45 million upgrade of Linode’s infrastructure back in April 2014, which brought SSD storage to the company’s servers, as well as Intel (INTC) Xeon E5 2680v2 Ivy Bridge processors, more RAM and higher network throughput.

  • Kernel Space

    • Systemd’s Plan For Stateless Systems, Factory Resets

      Following the exciting systemd 214 release that worked on new sandboxing features and other improvements toward a stateless Linux system, Lennart Poettering has blogged about the latest features and their plans going forward.

    • USB Attached SCSI (UAS) Is Now Working Under Linux

      With the recently released Linux 3.15 kernel is support for UAS. USB Attached SCSI will allow for significantly faster performance out of UAS-supported USB drive enclosures.

    • UAS: USB Attached SCSI now available in the 3.15 kernel, qemu USB-3.0 compatibility coming up

      At the end of 2013 I’ve spend 2 full months working on getting XHCI streams support and the UAS driver in the Linux kernel, which uses streams into shape. With the release of the 3.15 kernel this work now is available for end users to use.

    • VXLAN Support Added To Systemd’s Networkd

      The latest addition to systemd’s networkd networking component is support for Virtual Extensible LANs.

      With the latest networkd work, networkd can now create VXLANs. Virtual Extensible LANs are a network virtualization method designed for cloud computing needs.

    • Allwinner A23 “Sun8i” Support Gets Cleaned Up For The Linux Kernel

      Developers have put out their latest batch of Allwinner patches that allow for basic upstream kernel support of Allwinner’s A23 SoC.

      The Allwinner A23 SoC is a dual-core Cortex-A7 part that’s been out since last year. The A23 isn’t impressive by other tier-one ARM SoCs, but it’s low-cost and with the A23 System-on-a-Chip they switched from using PowerVR graphics to instead using ARM’s Mali with their new designs.

    • The People Who Support Linux: Embedded Linux Hobbyist Maintains eLinux Wiki

      Bill Traynor first got hooked on embedded Linux development when a friend who maintained Hitachi’s SH architecture helped him install Linux on his Sega Dreamcast. From there he developed a hobby of installing Linux on various gaming consoles, toys, and handheld devices. And when embedded development boards became more abundant, accessible and cheaper, Traynor moved on to more serious tinkering.

      “For me, the availability of Linux on the many low-cost, ARM-based dev boards has been fun,” he said via email. “Small, powerful boards, like the BeagleBone Black have really made things fun again.”

    • Linus Torvalds Releases First RC for Linux Kernel 3.16
    • Graphics Stack

    • Benchmarks

      • Open-Source Radeon Takes On AMD Catalyst In 2D Performance

        Last weekend I published 2D performance benchmarks comparing Nouveau to NVIDIA’s official driver. To no real surprise, the proprietary NVIDIA driver beat Nouveau in most micro-benchmarks when it comes to 2D (and separately, 3D) performance. With the open-source Radeon stack, however, it presents a much tougher fight against the proprietary Catalyst driver.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments/WMs

    • Enlightenment E19 Is Moving Closer To Release

      Enlightenment 0.19 features improved Wayland support, the tiling module rework has landed, support for the new X PRESENT extension for reducing compositing overhead in X.Org Server 1.15 and newer, the E16-style live pager has returned, and the new compositor code has landed.

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

      • Context-sensitive CMake documentation in QtCreator
      • Kubuntu 14.04 LTS Users Can Test the Beautiful Plasma 5 Beta 2 Desktop

        The new KDE Plasma 5 Beta 2 that was released only a few days ago can be tested in Kubuntu 14.04 LTS with a just a minimum of effort.

      • Easily Manage Remote Files on Linux with Konqueror and Kate

        One of the great things about Linux, especially for web developers or server administrators, is that all of the basic tools you need to get set with your remote server and files tend to be included and well integrated into the system from the get go. You don’t necessarily need to install an FTP client, a code editor or a special terminal emulator.

      • KWin is no more

        Now that I have your attention: the binary of KWin/5 just got renamed from “kwin” to “kwin_x11″. For you as a user nothing changes, the startup is adjusted to start kwin_x11 instead of kwin. Nothing else changed. The D-Bus interface is still org.kde.KWin, the config file is still “kwinrc”, etc. etc. Only if you start KWin manually remember to run “kwin_x11 –replace &” instead of “kwin –replace &”.

      • Managing internal dependencies in a build of Calligra

        During the move of KDE’s software projects from Subversion to Git most projects split their subprojects over multiple Git repositories. Calligra did not, but is keeping all code of all apps and extras in one single repository. That is all of the apps Author, Braindump, Flow, Karbon, Kexi, Krita, Plan, Sheets, Stage and Words as well as all of the extras like the file format converter, the Okular generators, file thumbnailers and other file manager integration.

    • GNOME Desktop/GTK

  • Distributions

    • Quick Look: Linux Lite 2.0

      Linux Lite 2.0 includes updated applications, Whisker Menu as the default menu, Linux Lite software repositories, sound control from the tray, descriptive title bars in terminal windows, and more than twenty popular applications that you can easily install from the terminal window. This release also offers a new system font called Droid Sans, tabs in the file manager, and dialog boxes for auto-login.

    • KaOS Linux: Hands-on with this solid and focused distribution

      When I saw the release announcement for KaOS 2014.06 on Distrowatch, it caught my eye for two reasons. First, because there have been a few times when I have thought I would really like to have a special KDE-focused distribution with rolling updates where I could find and test the latest in the KDE Software Collection and associated packages. And second, because I have recently been trying and writing about a totally “over-the-top” Linux distribution (Makulu) with absolutely everything thrown in, including the kitchen sink and whatever other appliances and paraphernalia were within reach, so the prospect of a smaller, carefully focused and selective distribution sounded quite interesting.

    • Rescatux 0.32 Beta 1 OS Can Help Users Fix Windows Systems and Linux Distributions

      Rescatux can fix GRUB and GRUB2, check and fix filesystems (Windows MBR included), change GNU/Linux passwords, regenerate sudoers files, and much more.

    • Migration to open source tool inspires new Linux distribution

      In 2005, in version 5.0, The Pharmacy Server was mature and solid, running on a central server that supported over 300 drugstore chains in Brazil, and has been featured by Red Hat as a certification success story.

      In 2010, after mergers and acquisitions, the company’s operation was terminated and Pharmacy Server was shut down. Its last version used Red Hat 5.4, Firebird 1.5.3, and a custom version of Webmin web admin interface.

    • New Releases

      • Meet Cubicle OS 2.3, a Failed Attempt at Building a Proper Linux Distribution

        Cubicle OS is a rather new operating system and it shows, especially from the way it’s built. The developer chose to implement GNOME as the default desktop environment, but it looks like he didn’t bother to customize it too much.

      • OpenELEC 4.0.5 Integrates Latest OpenSSL Fixes

        OpenELEC, an embedded operating system built specifically to run XBMC, the open source entertainment media hub, has advanced to version 4.0.5 and is now available for download.

        The OpenELEC makers usually follow the XMBC releases, but from time to the time the devs make their own upgrades that are not taken from the other project. After all, XBMC is just a software and OpenELEC is in fact a Linux distribution, which means that there are a number of other components that need improvements and fixes.

    • Screenshots

    • Gentoo Family

      • Sabayon Linux 14.06 Can Be Turned into a Gentoo-Based Steam Machine

        Sabayon 14.06 is based on Gentoo and that is not something that you see every day. In fact, there are very few Linux distros out there that are using Gentoo as a base and it’s good to see that developers take the time and the effort to utilize something else than Debian and Ubuntu.

    • Red Hat Family

      • Red Hat Core Linux Business Should Drive Q1 Earnings RHT
      • Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 Finally Hits the Big Time

        Perhaps the biggest release on the Linux Planet in the past week came from the world’s largest Linux vendor (by revenue); Red Hat.

        After what might have seemed like an eternity to some (though was only 3 and half years in reality), Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 (RHEL) officially became generally available. RHEL 6 was first releasedin November of 2010.

      • Red Hat Advances Enterprise Virtualization Platform With RHEV 3.4

        The Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization (RHEV 3.4) platform, released today, provides new features that make hypervisor-based virtualization easier to deploy and manage. The new RHEV release comes at a pivotal time for the virtualization industry as Docker container-based virtualization is now beginning to pick up momentum.

        RHEV 3.4 is based on the upstream open-source oVirt project, which had its 3.4 release March 27. RHEV provides additional hardening and commercial enterprise support.

      • Red Hat looks to the OpenStack cloud with Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization 3.4

        In this latest RHEV release, Red Hat states that it brings new “enhancements for traditional virtualization infrastructure, guest support for the newly released Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 7, as well as advanced OpenStack [cloud] support across compute, storage and networking.”

      • Red Hat unveils Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7
      • Red Hat Announces Updated Training for Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7
      • Red Hat Positions its Enterprise Virtualization Platform as an OpenStack Bridge

        Red Hat is out with its new Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization platform version 3.4, which arrives just after the new version of its Enterprise Linux offering. Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization (RHEV) 3.4 is being positioned as a bridge to the OpenStack cloud, among other things. The latest RHEV version offers new “guest support for [RHEL] as well as advanced OpenStack support across compute, storage and networking.”

      • Goodtech Energizes its IT Infrastructure with Red Hat

        Goodtech develops and delivers projects, services and products creating business value for customers within a number of industries and sectors including manufacturing, energy, green technology and infrastructure. Among Goodtech’s customers in the Nordic region are industry leaders such as Astra Zeneca, LKAB, Vattenfall, Statoil and Norsk Hydro.

      • Fedora

        • DNF v.s. Yum

          A lot has been said on fedora-devel in the last few weeks about DNF and Yum. I thought it might be useful to contribute my own views, considering I’ve spent the last half-decade consuming the internal Yum API and the last couple of years helping to design the replacement with about half a dozen of the packaging team here at Red Hat. I’m also a person who unsuccessfully tried to replace Yum completely with Zif in fedora a few years ago, so I know quite a bit about packaging systems and metadata parsing.

        • Xorg without root rights now available in Fedora
        • Fedora Rawhide Can Now Run The X.Org Server Without Root Rights

          Following a lot of work by Hans de Goede at Red Hat, Fedora Rawhide now supports running the X.Org Server without root rights.

        • Bodhi2 Fedora Activity Day

          The Bodhi2/Taskotron Fedora Activity Day happened earlier this month! A bunch of us gathered in Denver for a few days and worked on some of our critical releng & qa infrastructure. The hackfest was held in a conference room in my apartment building, which worked out quite nicely for the amount of people that we had. The hotel was right up the road, and we were able to walk to a lot of awesome spots, like the 1UP Barcade :).

        • Compare files with these graphical diff tools in Fedora
        • PGP Keysigning Event and CACert Assertion at SELF2014

          SouthEast LinuxFest is happening this upcoming weekend. I offered to host a PGP (I’ll substitute PGP for GPG, GnuPG, and other iterations) keysigning and CACert Assertion event and have been scheduled for 6:30 PM in the Red Hat Ballroom. Since there is a little bit of planning needed on the part of the participant I’m writing this to help the event run smoothly.

        • YUM Will Be Replaced By DNF On Fedora 22 And Later Versions
    • Debian Family

      • Debian 6 Gets LTS Support That Will End in February 2016

        The Debian developers have announced a few of months back that they intend to make Debian 6 an LTS release. The period for this extended release period has now begun.

      • Tails interview

        Tails was built with two specific things in mind: sustainability and usability.
        Sustainability refers to how this is a project that can be relied on by its users. The team goes on to explain the importance of usability: “We believe that the best security tool is of no use if people who really need it on the field cannot use it. Moreover, security tools must be hard to misuse, they should prevent you from doing critical mistakes, or ask you to make security decisions that you are not able to make.”

      • MATE 1.8 Has Been Added To Debian’s Default Repositories

        Mate is a Gnome 2 fork, created by the Arch Linux developers as a an alternative to Gnome Classic (Gnome 2), when the Gnome developers decided to create Gnome 3. Mate became very popular in a short time and now is used on many Linux systems. The latest version available is Mate 1.8, which has been released a while ago.

      • Debian 6 Will Be Maintained Under An LTS Flag

        Debian developers have announced today that Debian 6 will be maintained as a long-term support (LTS) state until February of 2016.

      • Debian 6 debuts its long term support period

        The Debian project is pleased to announce that the “Long Term Support (LTS)” infrastructure to provide security updates for Debian GNU/Linux 6.0 (code name “squeeze”) until February 2016 is now in place. Users of this version should follow the instructions from the LTS wiki page to ensure that they get the LTS security updates.

      • Mate 1.8 Is Now Available In Debian
      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Mir Gains Support For “Trusted Prompt Sessions”

            According to the Ubuntu Wiki, this feature comes down to “the main purpose of a trusted prompt session (TPS) then is to tie together the [application requesting access to a resource via a trusted helper, the trusted helper, and a trust prompt provider] components mentioned before, both in terms of presenting the final prompt to the user and in terms of lifecycle/focus mgmt. (from a shell’s perspective). In this respect, a temporary, virtual app is introduced that spans across all three components.”

          • Ubuntu for Phones Activated on 10,000 Devices

            Canonical has announced that its Ubuntu for phones operating system has been activated on 10,000 devices, marking an important milestone for the company.

            Ubuntu for phones was announced at the beginning of 2013 and the development team has been working on it since then. It took them a while to get a functioning version and they’ve been improving it constantly.

          • Hands-on with Canonical’s Orange Box and a peek into cloud nirvana

            First off, Canonical emphasized to Ars multiple times that it is not getting into the hardware business. If you really want to buy one of these things, you can have Tranquil PC build one for you (for £7,575, or about $12,700), but Canonical won’t sell you an Orange Box for your lab—there are too many partner relationships it could jeopardize by wading into the hardware game. But what Canonical does want to do is let you fiddle with an Orange Box. It makes for an amazing demo platform—a cloud-in-a-box that Canonical can use to show off the fancy services and tools it offers.

          • Linux 3.16 Won’t Land On Ubuntu 14.10 Quite Yet

            The stable Linux 3.15 is now available from the Ubuntu 14.10 development archive while the Linux 3.16 kernel isn’t landing quite yet in its early development form.

          • Flavours and Variants

            • More on Mint, Email Clients, and Weather Apps
            • Initial thoughts on Linux Mint 17

              As night follows the day, so too do Linux Mint launches follow Ubuntu releases. Linux Mint is a project which puts together a desktop-oriented distribution based on Ubuntu packages. The Linux Mint project tends to take a more practical and conservative approach to crafting a desktop operating system when compared to Ubuntu. While Ubuntu experiments with the Unity desktop, servers, cloud computing and mobile devices, the Mint team stays focused on producing a familiar, user-friendly, multimedia-enabled desktop solution. Starting with their most recent release, Linux Mint 17, the Mint team has announced they will be adjusting their release cycle, basing all Linux Mint releases on the most recent Ubuntu long term support release. This should make for a more stable platform and a more relaxed release cycle.

            • Download Linux Mint 17 Xfce and KDE release candidates

              In today’s open source roundup: Linux Mint 17 Xfce and KDE RC released. Plus: Deepin 2014 RC released, and a review of Linux Mint 17 MATE by DistroWatch

            • Tizen SDK Live DVD updated to Lubuntu 14.04

              The unofficial Tizen SDK Live DVD has now been updated to the latest version of lubuntu 14.04, and you can download the ISO image now.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • IFC6410 Snapdragon 600 dev board now supports Fedora, Ubuntu

      The IFC6410 Pico-ITX board is a tiny computer-on-a-board powered by the same Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 processor as the Samsung Galaxy S4 or HTC One M7 smartphones. It sells for $149 and it’s aimed at developers, hobbyists, and others interested in testing their hardware or software designs… but thanks to a few recent developments, you can also use the IFC6410 as a small, inexpensive desktop computer.

    • Google Fit: Google’s new health service to challenge Apple’s HealthKit

      However, there is a need for more clarity on whether Google Fit will be integrated into the next version of Android, or offered as a standalone app that could be downloaded independently.

      It added: “One source with knowledge of Google’s plans said Google Fit would allow a wearable device that measures data like steps or heart rate to interface with Google’s cloud-based services, and become part of the Google Fit ecosystem.”

    • IFC6410 Pico-ITX Development Board Now Supports Fedora And Ubuntu

      Makers, hobbyists and developers looking for a new Linux Fedora or Ubuntu development board for their projects might be interested to learn that the IFC6410 Pico-ITX board which is available to purchase for around $149.

    • Phones

      • Call for Papers – Tizen Developer Summit Shanghai 2014
      • Russia Tizen App Challenge, Total of 7,000,000 Rubel in Prize money on offer

        The Russia Tizen App Challenge has been launched with the aim of bringing talented application and game developers to the new Tizen platform, for new challenges and above all new opportunities. The competition has started on the 9th June and is open to citizens of the Russia or Ukraine, Azerbaijan, Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan with permanent or temporary registration in the territory of Russia.

      • Control Your Phone with These Open Source Linux Apps

        If your phone can be connected to your computer with an USB cable you can do a lot more through this connection than just recharging it or transferring files to and from your phone’s storage. For example, you can make phone calls, read and send text messages, and see a bunch of other information from your phone, right on your PC. There is a number of Free Open Source software applications that allow you to do this, and you don’t even need to have a smartphone for this to work, just a phone that can connect to USB.

      • Ballnux

        • Leak reveals Galaxy S5 and S4 KitKat update coming this month

          The document leaked to Android Geeks by an anonymous tipster indicates two versions of the S5 are due to receive the 4.4.3 update within the next couple of weeks. The leaked document was an email sent to Android Geeks titled “KTU84 Update Status Report”, containing a visible Samsung header and dated “June 10th”. The document suggests the Galaxy S5 (SM-G900F and SM-G900H) are both due to receive the update in June with both models having ‘completed testing’.

      • Android

        • World’s most secure Android phone finally starts shipping next month

          Secure communications specialist Silent Circle recently set out to build the most secure Android phone in the world, and some have gone as far as to call the company’s Blackphone an “NSA-proof” smartphone. That statement can’t be confirmed, of course, since the NSA surely still has a few tricks up its sleeve that we don’t know about. What we can say, however, is that people concerned with keeping their mobile communications private will soon have a new option that is more secure than any publicly available Android phone currently on the market.

        • Silent Circle’s Blackphone will ship out in three weeks

          Silent Circle in partnership with Geeksphone announced the Blackphone in January this year. The makers of the Blackphone claims that the handset is the world’s first smartphone that gives its user total control of privacy.

          The upcoming smartphone is powered by a modified version of Android, PrivatOS, which is believed to be more security-oriented. The Blackphone will be carrier and vendor independent, which will ensure that individuals and businesses are able to make and receive secure phone calls, send texts, store files, browse the internet and more without compromising the privacy of the user.

        • Blackphone is about to sidle stealthily into the mainstream
        • NSA-Proof? Super-Secure Blackphone Shipping by July
        • Super-Secure Blackphone Shipping by July
        • Anti-forensic mobile OS gets your phone to lie for you

          In Android Anti-forensics: Modifying CyanogenMod Karl-Johan Karlsson and William Bradley Glisson present a version of the Cyanogenmod alternate operating system for Android devices, modified so that it generates plausible false data to foil forensic analysis by law enforcement. The idea is to create a mobile phone that “lies” for you so that adversaries who coerce you into letting them take a copy of its data can’t find out where you’ve been, who you’ve been talking to, or what you’ve been talking about.

        • OnePlus makes official announcement defending anger against ‘Invite’ System
        • A warm welcome to CyanogenMod

          In short, CyanogenMod (pronounced sigh-AN-oh-jen-mod) is an open-source operating system for smartphones and tablets. CM is based on the android platform but contains a wealth of add-ons, third party extensions and customisations. Until now CM was pretty much an alternative operating system only used by those who were brave enough to self-install (aka ‘flashing’). However more recently CM is starting to hit the mainstream market in all new ways. At present CM can claim over 12 million installs which when considering was never released (until recently) as a direct-from-launch pre-installed product is quite impressive. In addition alternative phone manufacturers are starting to see the benefits of CM and jumping on board. The first device to officially utilize CM was the OPPO N1 which launched back in December 2013 with the ColorOS operating system. This was the first device ever to offer a pre-loaded CM firmware.

        • The wait is over! OnePlus One available to buy without invite

          It looks like the wait is over! OnePlus One has arguable created a lot of controversy over the last few months with the release of their new device. This first began with ‘OnePlus’ (the company) creating a real buzz around their open-source device ‘OnePlus One’ (the device – yes, it is confusing). However with increasingly delayed release dates and a purchase system relying on “invites”. OnePlus is starting to receive a backlash from the very people who were initially creating the buzz.

        • Must have apps for rooted Android devices

          Rooting your device and installing custom ROMs unleashes the true open nature of Android. Customising phone or tablet and having tight control over their functions is what hardcore Android users dream of. Once your device is rooted, it paves way for installing apps that can take advantage of the added permission and access to core software. Here are few of the best apps that will give you Super Powers that non-root users cannot wield.

        • Android Glom Experiments

          Over the past few weeks I’ve been diving into Android development using a semi-realistic project to force me to learn properly. I wrote a rough first version of a read-only Glom database UI for Android, called android-glom. So now there’s a version in gtkmm (C++), Qt (C++), GWT (Java) and Android (Java). It’s a good way to really try out a framework and I’ve really enjoyed doing that with no pressure.

        • 6 Android Phones with Great Battery Life

          One of the most common complaints of smartphone ownership is battery life. Big displays and powerful processors conspire together to drain your phone of life before the day is through. You can get a portable battery charger to keep you going (and you probably should for emergencies and travel), but that’s one more device to carry.

Free Software/Open Source

  • The future of open source: speeding technology innovation

    As one of the contributors to Black Duck’s eighth annual Future of Open Source Survey, the industry’s leading indicator of open source software (OSS) industry trends, JFrog was pleased to be able to help show the world the true impact of open source software. This was the first year that we decided to take part in the survey. We felt that it was a natural partnership, since our work revolves around regularly interacting with the OSS community to help create and distribute open source software.

  • Ionic ngCordova Open-source AngularJS Services and Extensions for HTML5 Apps

    Ionic offers a free and open source library of mobile-optimized HTML, CSS and JS components for building HTML5 apps. Ionic has recently announced ngCordova, an open-source collection of AngularJS services and extensions that allow the use of Cordova plugins and native features in hybrid apps.

  • Building and Maintaining an Open-Source Community: How to Get Developer Attention

    There are many useful open-source technologies out there. With all of this competition, it’s critical to make it clear why your particular open-source offering should be considered, and for which needs. That’s the reality any builder of an open-source community needs to adopt right from the start: While participation by developers in an active, viable open-source community will undoubtedly improve their projects, as well as your product’s evolution, getting a community up and running can be a challenge.

  • 110 Fun Open Source Games and Apps

    Once again, we’re celebrating the arrival of summer with a list of some of the best open source games available. We’ve updated last year’s list with some new arrivals, as well as getting rid of some of the older games that are no longer under active development. You’ll find arcade, board, casual, puzzle, educational, first-person shooter, music, racing, role-playing, adventure, simulator and strategy games, as a well as a few apps that aren’t really games but are still a lot of fun.

  • Events

  • Web Browsers

  • SaaS/Big Data

  • Databases

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

  • CMS

    • PBJ100: No. 9 ThinkShout leans on the open source movement for growth

      How has operating in the Portland area worked to your advantage? Portland is a hotbed of technical innovation, and open source in particular. It’s also fast becoming a hub for Drupal, the open source framework we use for many of our projects. Finally, Portland is a magnet for people who care about more than just a paycheck. Our team is made up of folks who care as much, if not more, about the nonprofits we’re helping as the technology we use and user experiences we craft.

    • XOOPS 2.5.7 Final Goes Live

      The XOOPS development team have announced the release of version 2.5.7.

      XOOPS is an acronym of, “eXtensible Object Oriented Portal System”. It’s a free open source content management systems (CMS), written in PHP.

  • BSD

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

    • Peter Schaar on “Technik, Recht und Überwachung”

      On July 7th 2014 Peter Schaar (Head of the European Academy for Freedom of Information and Data Protection, former Bundesdatenschutzbeauftrager) will give a talk about technology, law and surveillance in German. The talk will be at the Garching campus of the TUM (U-Bahn stop: U6 Garching Forschungszentrum), in the FMI (Informatics/Mathematics) building, in Hörsaal 3 (lecture hall 3) starting at 16:00. Admission is of course free, registration is not required.

    • GIMP On TV

      I was watching an issue of CNN’s “Forensic Files” early this morning when I was surprised to see GIMP on TV. A murder had been committed and the local anthropologist lacked software to compare a skull with a portrait to verify the identity of the victim. A local computer guru was able to use GIMP to compare photographs of the skull with the portrait. That set the police on a course towards solving the crime. It turned out the truck driver did it. DNA from a tooth compared to some surgical evidence confirmed GIMP’s conclusions.

      What was interesting is that Forensic Files mentioned that GIMP was available to anyone for a $free download. I liked that. The software licence, GPL, described in generic terms the public can understand got out there.

  • Public Services/Government

    • How Open Source Software Transformed a Nation’s Police Force

      In 2012, the Dutch police force – which consists of over 63,000 workers – came to the realization that their disunity was directly impacting their role in Dutch society.

    • ‘Open source crucial for cutting edge industry’ – South Korea ICT ministry

      Public administrations using open source software help make the country more competitive and lay a foundation for a creative economy. Consequently, the South Korean government wants its public administrations to consider free and open source software alternatives, according to its national open source competence centre, presented at a workshop in the capital Seoul, on 3 June.

    • Leipzig is switching to open source office suites

      The German city of Leipzig is switching to using open source suites of office productivity tools: Apache OpenOffice and LibreOffice. It expects that in the first five years the anticipated savings will be swallowed by the exit costs associated with the proprietary software used by the city. Starting in 2017, however, the city expects to lower its IT costs by some 100,000 euro, says Lars Greifzu, responsible for marketing and sales at Lecos, the city-owned IT service provider.

    • M$ Drives Away Another Big Customer
  • Openness/Sharing

    • Open-Source Agriculture: The Sprouting Of A New Food Movement?

      The Open Source Seed Initiative is trying to preserve some of the world’s seeds from patents and licenses.

    • What’s open source got to do with Earth science? NASA explains

      Earth scientists, including remote sensing experts, climate modelers, practitioners, policy makers, and decision makers, have had a hand in furthering and monitoring the open source space. For example, the climate modeling community executes its daily operations of building, testing, and validating climate and Earth system models, many of which today are open source, released under Open Source Initiative (OSI) approved licenses, and software packages that involve community contributions from very diverse participants. Similarly, the remote sensing community leverages open source packages, including Python and R, as well as non-open source, but community oriented packages, such as MATLAB, ENVI/IDL, and other software to share code, disseminate it amongst the community of experts, and also to process remote sensing data.

    • Open Access/Content

    • Open Hardware

      • 3D Printing goes open source

        There’s been a ton of excitement around 3D printing over the last few years and it’s definitely justified. While the techniques of 3D printing have been around for many decades, recent cost reductions have thrust 3D printing into wide-spread use. In fact, I designed a custom engagement ring for my wife and had it 3d printed in silver; more on that below.

  • Standards/Consortia

    • Internet of Things – proprietary vs open source systems

      Internet of Things (IoT) market is estimated to generate $ 7.1 trillion in sales by 2020, but its main issue is often considered to be the lack of interoperability between devices belonging to different systems.

    • Unicode 7.0 Adds A Lot Of New Characters

      The Unicode 7.0 standard was announced yesterday and adds 2,834 characters.

      Unicode 7.0 brings in new currency symbols, historic scripts, and a variety of other symbols — including plenty new emoji characters.

Leftovers

  • Science

    • Rendor Turns Your Single-Camera Smartphone Into A Real 3D Scanner

      Built by Replica Labs, the program uses only a single camera to render the object. As you can see from the video below, the front of the object was very nicely rendered, but because they didn’t spin around the back, the object is “connected” to the background. However, thanks to the printed sheet, they should be able to get a 360-degree view of the object and allow the system to assess bulges, creases and other aspects of 3D objects. Plus it looks cool.

  • Health/Nutrition

    • The Kaua’i Cocktail: Why Hawaiians Are Outraged by GMO Farming on Kaua’i

      The island of Kaua’i, Hawai’i, has become Ground Zero in the intense political battle over genetically modified (GMO) crops in the United States. But the fight isn’t just about the concerns over GMO technology. It’s also about chemical pesticides.

      The four transnational corporations that are experimenting with genetically engineered crops on Kaua’i have transformed part of the island into what could be one of the most toxic chemical environments in all of U.S. agriculture.

    • Polio vaccine campaigns face difficulty amid spying revelations

      Despite efforts by the World Health Organization (WHO) to eradicate polio worldwide, ten countries, including Pakistan, Nigeria, and Syria, are on red alert as new cases have been detected and fears grow of the virus spreading to neighboring countries.

      Yemen is not on the list, but fear over the polio virus has increased amid a regional breakout and concerns that Syrian refugees fleeing to Yemen could reintroduce the virus.

      Yemen’s Health Ministry on April 3 launched a comprehensive national campaign to vaccinate children against polio in cooperation with the WHO. The move was to act against fears of polio spreading in Yemen.

  • Security

  • Defence/Police/Secrecy/Aggression

    • General Haftar launches new attacks on Islamist militias in Libya

      The CIA-linked rebel Retired General Khalifa Haftar is continuing his Operation Dignity ostensibly designed to rid Libya of jihadist militias but which also involved an attack on the Libyan parliament.

    • Libya is on the brink of civil war, again

      In the early days of the Arab Spring, according to a Libyan diplomat, Tunisians would mock Libyans by admonishing their neighbours to the east to keep their heads down so that they, in Tunisia, could have an unobstructed view of the real revolutionaries in Egypt, who had risen up against the long autocracy of Hosni Mubarak.

    • Is Israel Building an All-Drone Army?

      According to CNN, the state of Israel is the largest exporter of drones and drone technology in the world. Leading Israeli defense concern Israel Aerospace Industries, or IAI, counts as its customers the military forces of more than two-dozen nations around the world. These customers buy Israeli drones first and foremost because they’re easier to acquire than American models — where sales can be held up by government restrictions on drone exports. But customers also flock to buy Israeli drones because they work.

    • A Coup? Nonsense!

      A CYNIC might interrupt here: “Why should the army bother with a coup? It governs Israel anyhow!”

    • Three Troubling Lessons from the Latest U.S. Drone Strikes
    • How the U.S. helped turn Iraq into an al-Qaida haven in just 53 steps

      Eleven years after the U.S. invasion, Iraq is on the brink of collapse. We have only ourselves to blame

    • Iraq redux: The dogs of war are barking again

      It’s predictably pitiful that the Bush-era architects of our Iraq disaster have resurfaced to insist that the current sectarian bloodbath is all President Obama’s fault.

      They have no shame. In the words of Paul Pillar, a former top CIA analyst, these dogs of war precipitated “one of the biggest and costliest mistakes in American history” – and yet here they are, indulged anew in the press, shirking accountability and shifting blame and presuming to offer advice. This spectacle would be hilarious if it were not so nauseating.

    • OPINION: Violence in Iraq Result of Wreckage of US Policy Since 9/11
    • Iraq: Fools rush in, fools rush out

      I have written it before and I will write it again: Iraq has made fools of us all.

      It made a fool of George W. Bush, who invaded the country to destroy Saddam Hussein’s weapons of mass destruction, only to have American troops get there and discover Iraq had no WMDs.

      It made a fool of CIA Director George Tenet, who infamously responded to Bush’s skepticism regarding the WMD reports by jumping up and shouting “It’s a slam dunk, Mr. President!”

      The war made a fool of most Americans like myself, who believed that the U.S. military needed to invade Iraq to keep their country safe.

    • Boris Johnson: Blair should ‘put a sock in it’ over Iraq

      The London Mayor, Boris Johnson, has said that he thinks Tony Blair “should put a sock in it” rather than comment on the situation in Iraq.

      Mr Johnson said that when looking at the current situation in Iraq it was important to consider the impact of previous foreign intervention in the country.

    • Boris Johnson: Tony Blair’s Iraq comments ‘unhinged’

      Boris Johnson has described Tony Blair’s argument that the violent insurgency in Iraq has nothing to do with the 2003 invasion as “unhinged”.

      Writing in the Daily Telegraph, the Mayor of London says the former prime minister is undermining the case for “serious and effective intervention”.

      He described the invasion as a “tragic mistake” and a “misbegotten folly”.

    • Letters: Fighting ISIS monsters in Iraq is not Australia’s duty

      IF AUSTRALIA wants to assist the United States in Iraq with intelligence reports, that’s fine.

      Just keep Prime Minister Tony Abbott away from the phone.

    • Debating Iraq in 2014: Wrong All Over Again

      The crisis in Iraq has brought war back to the US airwaves. But if you were expecting a more robust discussion about US military action this time around, think again. The rule seems to be that if you were wrong in 2003, you’re still an expert in 2014.

    • MSNBC’s Ed Schultz Calls Out Media For Giving Discredited Iraq War Architects A Platform

      Schultz: “They Should Not Be Treated As Experts, Because They Aren’t”

    • Who lost Iraq? What we can do about it?

      The Iraq war was conceived in sin. It was based on the lies of the Bush administration, the most notorious of which were not about “weapons of mass destruction.” More dangerous were the fabricated projections they presented about how: the war would last only a few weeks and our presence would end in six months; it would only cost one to two billion dollars; American soldiers would be greeted as “liberators” with flowers at their feet; and Iraq’s new democracy would be “a beacon for the new Middle East.”

    • The fall of Mosul and the crimes of imperialism

      No one has been held accountable for these actions, which indisputably constitute war crimes. Those responsible include not only George W. Bush, Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld and others in the previous administration. Both major political parties, the media, the corporations and every American institution are responsible for the lies that have pervaded US policy—both foreign and domestic—for the past decade and a half. All of the criminal policies under Bush—aggressive war, torture—have been continued and deepened by the Obama administration. With its “pivot” to Asia and coup in Ukraine, it is preparing military confrontation with Russia and China and laying the groundwork for a nuclear Third World War.

    • Ron Paul: Haven’t We Already Done Enough Damage In Iraq?
    • Former Rep. Ron Paul warns about getting more involved in Iraq

      Despite the Obama administration’s vow not to put any troops on the ground, Mr. Paul, a libertarian icon, said members of the special forces or the CIA will be sent. He also warned against shipping arms to Iraq and said the Iraq military’s performance to date suggests that a lot of the money invested in it was “wasted or stolen.”

    • Obama Should Resist Military Intervention, in Iraq and Beyond

      If we are to solve our myriad domestic problems and revitalize our economy we need to be more selective about our involvement in foreign crises large and small. The president should embrace that truth in his remaining years in office. For starters, that means staying out of Iraq.

    • The War in Iraq Cost $4 Trillion and Enormous Loss of Life: 8 Warmongers Who Would Take Us Back

      The Iraq War hawks are back. And they have two knee-jerk ways of seeing the convulsions in Iraq where Sunni militants have seized cities from Syria to Baghdad’s doorstep, killing government workers and civilians, and grabbing weapons from a vanishing Iraqi Army.

      First, it is always President Obama’s fault; and second, the U.S. must return to war, despite what has been one of the biggest debacles in American military history. Hawks are only happy when we are at war, fueling the military-industrial complex as U.S. soldiers die and platoons of maimed veterans return home to underfunded medical care.

    • As Obama Considers Drone Strikes in Iraq, Could U.S. Military Action Worsen Sectarian Conflict?
    • Tom Friedman will never ever get tired of telling Iraqis to ‘suck on this’

      Walking TED talk and taxi-driver-chatter-upper Tom Friedman is obviously not a big fan of Iraq. Possibly because it doesn’t seem like a place where Apple would extend their global empire; building factories full of low-wage worker bees churning out iToothbrushes or whatever the hell they are going to iMake next in an effort to suck every last dollar out of every last wallet before Steve Jobs returns to Earth to take them all to iHeaven.

    • Militants battle Iraq forces as US weighs drone strikes

      Militants battled Iraqi security forces for control of a strategic northern town on Monday, prompting half the area’s population to flee, as Washington weighed drone strikes against fighters leading the charge.

    • A Wild Weekend With Kristof, Snowden and Manning

      Then there’s this from Kristof: “The Democratic narrative is that President Bush started the cascade of dominoes. The problem with that logic is that Obama administration officials were boasting just a couple of years ago about how peaceful and successful Iraq had become because of their fine work.” Again: It’s just “the Democratic narrative,” not an objective fact, that Bush “started the cascade of dominoes.”

      Just the latest Kristof embarrassment. And let’s not forget that he strongly urged Obama to bomb Syria last year—which would have aided the ISIS rebels.

    • Obama considers military options in Iraq

      The US already has an aircraft carrier accompanied by two ships with guided-missile capabilities in the Gulf.

    • There’s No Such Thing as ‘Other Military Options’ in Iraq

      The Obama Administration has been supplying Iraq with their foreign military sales program with a total of $15 Billion in supplying the country in chaos with F-16 jets, drones, tanks, arms, and Apache attack helicopters. Baghdad has been urging the US to deliver military weapons to stabilize its country, but the Iraqi military does not seem sufficiently trained to effectively use such complex military hardware.

    • U.S. Doesn’t Know Who to Hit in Iraq

      The U.S. military has the capability to conduct air strikes over Iraq within hours. The problem is they don’t know exactly who they are supposed to be targeting.

    • Tony Blair’s call for anti-Isis drive criticised

      Tony Blair came under fierce attack from former Labour cabinet members, some diplomats and the Liberal Democrat peer Lord Ashdown after he called for limited military intervention to drive the militant group Isis out of Iraq and restore order in Syria.

    • Blair: Bombing Iraq Better – Again
    • Anderson Cooper shilling for Bush

      CNN on Sunday night aired a “documentary” about former President George H.W. Bush on the occasion of his 90th birthday.

      It was a glowing tribute to the nation’s 41st president filled with testimonials from notables, including President Obama, Bill Clinton and 39 other friends and family members. What was missing was a warning that what viewers were about to see was propaganda masquerading as journalism.

      As noted by the always spot-on David Zurawik, the program — titled “41ON41” —was paid for by the George Bush Presidential Library Foundation and one of its producers worked as a speechwriter for Bush in the White House.

    • What Can We Do in Iraq? Nothing!

      That is the way of the world. We have seen this before. In March of 1973, American troops withdrew from South Vietnam, leaving our local allies to take over that war. Two years later the North Vietnamese reached Saigon, as the ISIS has reached the suburbs of Baghdad. Do you think we should have gone back and resumed the war in Southeast Asia? That would have been nuts, and it is nuts to go back into Iraq.

    • Obama Announces About 275 Troops Deploying To Iraq

      Nearly 300 armed American forces are being positioned in and around Iraq to help secure U.S. assets as President Barack Obama nears a decision on an array of options for combating fast-moving Islamic insurgents, including airstrikes or a contingent of special forces.

    • US Deploys Extra Troops to Iraq, Mulls Air Strikes
    • U.S. adds troops, mulls air strikes in Iraq

      The U.S. was deploying extra troops to protect its embassy in Baghdad and mulling air strikes against militants who have seized key cities, amid warnings Tuesday that Iraq has polarized irrevocably.

    • Letter: Not another U.S. life or dollar for Iraq

      Now, our drone-happy President is under the illusion that he can find a “political solution” to overcome a 14-century-old animosity between the Sunnis and the Shiites and force them to compromise and reconcile. Good luck.

      And John McCain, with his Napoleon complex proposes to bomb them, as he does in every other troubled corner of the world. Somehow, having spent the majority of his military service as a war prisoner qualifies him to be an expert on and a spokesman for everything military and foreign policy.

    • ‘America can’t be part of any solution to stop the ISIS violence’
    • Anti-war groups demonstrate against drones in Battle Creek.

      A protest that began a week ago at Boeing Headquarters near Chicago, ended Saturday at the Air National Guard Base at Fort Custer.

      The demonstrators want the U.S. to stop using remotely controlled aircraft to carry out military missions around the world.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • Contamination of Natural Kaua’i: Rare Plants and Wildlife at Risk

      Given its fragile and unusually rich ecology, the Hawaiian island of Kaua’i seems ill-suited as a site for agricultural experiments that use heavy amounts of toxic chemicals. But four transnational corporations — Syngenta, BASF Plant Science, DuPont Pioneer, and Dow AgroSciences — have been doing just those kinds of experiments here for about two decades, extensively spraying pesticides on their GMO test fields. As a result, the landscape on the southwest corner of the island has become one of the most toxic chemical environments in all of American agriculture.

    • Climate change will ‘cost world far more than estimated’

      Lord Stern, the world’s most authoritative climate economist, has issued a stark warning that the financial damage caused by global warming will be considerably greater than current models predict.

    • Demand the right to know about dangerous oil train threats

      That’s what the U.S. Department of Transportation called shipments of crude oil by rail last month when it issued an emergency order requiring rail companies to notify emergency responders when dangerous shipments of explosive crude oil move through communities.

    • Dying to save the Amazonian rainforest

      An environmental campaigner is killed every week in Brazil.

  • Finance

    • Hospital Uses Executive Bonus Money To Give Its Workers A Raise

      Parkland Health & Hospital System in Dallas will raise its own minimum wage to $10.25 an hour next month, paying for the increase with money originally devoted to executive bonuses.

      The lowest-level employees at the hospital currently make $8.78 an hour, and the increase will give about 230 workers a raise. Those workers were already making more than Texas’s minimum wage, which is the same as the federal $7.25 an hour rate. The move also means that every worker employed by Dallas county, inside and outside the hospital, will make more than $10.25 an hour.

    • Rousseff and Merkel Meet Ahead of German Debut in World Cup
    • Rousseff, Merkel seek progress toward EU-Mercosur free trade deal
    • Berlin and Brasilia vow to strengthen ties

      German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s meeting with Brazil’s Dilma Rousseff served to emphasize common interests. German-Brazilian relations increasingly shape world politics.

    • Ralph Nader on Dave Brat: ‘A Clear Populist Challenge by Main Street Against Wall Street’
    • Fomenting a Revolution: Extreme Acts of Greed Against the American People

      Examples of extreme inequality are becoming easier to find. Progressive leaders have us thinking about revolution. If a revolution is to take place, Americans — especially young Americans— need to know the facts, and they need to know how they’re getting cheated, and they need to get angry. The following should help.

    • We Can No Longer Ignore Bitcoin’s Fatal Flaw

      Bitcoin is no longer decentralised and the cryptocurrency needs fixing if it’s to survive. That’s the warning some cryptocurrency researchers are giving since a single entity, a Bitcoin mining pool called GHash, managed to acquire 51 percent of total network mining power for 12 hours straight at the end of last week.

    • Crypto-”armageddon:” Researchers claim mining concentration threatens to destroy bitcoin

      Here we go again. For the umteenth time in recent memory, the sanctity of the bitcoin network is facing an existential threat from a large and overly secretive organization. It’s not an exchange or wallet service this time around that has the attention of crypto-currency watchers, but rather a large mining pool, specifically GHash.io, the self-described world’s “#1 Crypto & Bitcoin Mining Pool.”

    • Bitcoin security guarantee shattered by anonymous miner with 51% network power
    • ‘Bitcoin Jesus’ Calls Rich to Tax-Free Tropical Paradise

      He’s known as Bitcoin Jesus in the world of cyber-currencies. Though he can’t promise you heaven, he is offering a haven: a condo in the Caribbean that comes with a new passport and almost zero taxes.

      Meet Roger Ver, ex-U.S. citizen, ex-convict, millionaire investor, self-described libertarian and founder of Passports for Bitcoin.com.

      The ever-expanding universe of what you can buy with bitcoins includes a hotel stay in Rome, a kimono in Tokyo, and cable TV in the U.S. Ver, a pioneer investor in bitcoin startups, now says he can add citizenship to the list.

    • Supreme Court Ruling Against Argentina: Global Consequences

      Analysis: Expect hedge fund copycats to begin to buy defaulted sovereign debt and break apart previous settlement packages while a well connected global enforcer group filled with Blackwater thugs collects in mafia fashion

      [...]

      Another fallout from the ruling could be a rise in additional hedge fund managers imitating Elliott Management and other “vulture funds,” buying debt claims for pennies on the dollar and then demanding payment in full and breaking previous negotiated settlements. What is needed for this hedge fund strategy to succeed is a global enforcer, a more sophisticated version of dog the bounty hunter, to physically repossess debtor assets as Elliott did when it seized an Argentine navel vessel sitting off the shore of Ghana. Or think about those separate holdout investors who attempted to reposes the President of Argentina’s personal jet as it sat refueling in a foriegn airport – with el Presidente inside. The enforcer group must be led by a high level operative familiar with maneuvering government assets to benefit large banks. Eric Holder might be a good person, with potential sponsorship from the large banks and their venture capital arm. This group could include ex CIA working with Blackwater type thugs to collect debt the old school way with a baseball bat. Whatever the future, it might not be kind to governments that grow massive debts – including, surprise, the USA.

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • Wikipedia creates new rules, forcing editors to disclose if they’re paid

      The Wikimedia Foundation, a nonprofit that operates Wikipedia and related projects, explained yesterday that it will establish new rules covering paid editing.

      The heart of the change is that anyone who is paid to edit the site must “add your affiliation to your edit summary, user page, or talk page, to fairly disclose your perspective,” according to Wikimedia’s explanation of the change. The organization has also published an FAQ on paid editing.

    • Hero vs. Villain

      So why doesn’t Congress agree with the people they represent? Two reasons. The lobbyists have bribed them into protecting the future of cheap labor for their rich clients. The second reason is the fear of the Republican Party and Tea Party that Hispanics would vote for the Democratic Party in elections.

      This is the future of the United States of America; protecting the interests of special-interest groups and ignoring the majority of our citizens. The Constitution has died an unacceptable death, and no amount of CPR (Congressional Posturing and Rationalization) can bring it back to life.

  • Censorship

  • Privacy

    • Missiles-on-rooftops Brit spy Farr: Yes, UK.gov slurps your Facebook, Twitter… What of it?

      One of the UK’s top spies has said that the country reckons spying on British folks’ Facebook posts and tweets is legal because they’re classed as “external communications” – though he wouldn’t confirm outright that it did so.

    • Mass surveillance of social media is permitted by law, says top UK official

      Mass surveillance of social media, such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, and even Google searches, is permissible because they are “external communications”, according to the government’s most senior security official.

    • How to Anonymize Everything You Do Online

      One year after the first revelations of Edward Snowden, cryptography has shifted from an obscure branch of computer science to an almost mainstream notion: It’s possible, user privacy groups and a growing industry of crypto-focused companies tell us, to encrypt everything from emails to IMs to a gif of a motorcycle jumping over a plane.

    • Unmasking Big Brother

      One year ago, Glenn Greenwald began reporting on the leaked documents provided by National Security Agency whistleblower Edward Snowden. Together, Snowden and Greenwald have exposed vast government programs of domestic and international surveillance that threaten civil liberties here and around the world. As a result of these shocking revelations, Snowden has been stranded in Russia, facing espionage charges, and Greenwald has become the target of media hit jobs questioning whether he had the right to report on these spy programs and the erosion of our civil liberties.

    • Forget national security: Drones are the latest scandal at the World Cup

      Along with Edward Snowden, the NSA, and wars, drones are the hottest topic in national security these days.

    • Hillary Clinton Refuses ‘No Spy Agreement’ with Germany

      State Hillary Clinton angered the entire nation of Germany by refusing to support a “no spy agreement” with one of the USA’s most supportive allies.

      The Voice of Russia reports that, “Clinton, meanwhile, said she understood Germany’s anger at revelations that the US Natural Security Agency (NSA) had listened into Merkel’s mobile phone as part of its large scale surveillance of electronic communications in Germany, America’s close ally.”

    • ‘Access My Info’ Tool Lets Telecom Subscribers Know If They’ve Been Spied On
    • This App Helps Reveal What Personal Data Is Stored by Canadian ISPs

      Moreover, Access My Info is based on an open platform. As a result, it can be reconfigured to send the same kinds of legal requests for information to all kinds of companies: credit card companies, banks, stores, or even car companies.

    • Ron Wyden, Mark Udall and Rand Paul: How to end the NSA dragnet

      One year ago this month, Americans learned that their government was engaged in secret dragnet surveillance, which contradicted years of assurances to the contrary from senior government officials and intelligence leaders.

    • British Spy Agencies Are Said to Assert Power to Intercept Web Traffic

      In a broad legal rationale for collecting information from Internet use by its citizens, the British government has reportedly asserted the right to intercept communications that go through services like Facebook, Google and Twitter that are based in the United States or other foreign nations, even if they are between people in Britain.

      The British position is described in a draft summary of a report to be released Tuesday by Privacy International and other advocacy groups.

    • Calif. Court To Review Secret NSA Phone Surveillance Docs

      A California federal judge on Friday ordered the U.S. Department of Justice to produce top secret documents requested by the Electronic Frontier Foundation related to the National Security Agency’s surveillance of Americans’ call data so that the court can review if they are exempt from the Freedom of Information Act.

    • NSA Can Neither Confirm Nor Deny It Uses The Phrases It Used On A Leaked Slide

      Leopold asked the NSA about its variations on the phrase “collect it all” (a.k.a. former NSA head Keith Alexander’s personal motto), including “sniff it all,” “process it all,” “exploit it all,” “partner it all” and “know it all.” As is its particular idiom, the NSA Glomared all over the response letter.

    • Appeals court reverses decision in Chicago terrorism case

      An appeals court has overruled a groundbreaking decision by a Chicago judge to let lawyers for an alleged terrorist see classified surveillance evidence.

    • Government Demands Whistleblower Organization’s Encrypted Files

      For those people who still do not believe we have crossed a terrible line into a Post-Constitutional state, here’s another chance to repent before we all go to hell.

      The Department of Veterans Affairs’ (VA) in-house watchdog has demanded that the Project On Government Oversight (POGO) turn over all information it has collected related to abuses and mismanagement at VA medical facilities, according to a subpoena delivered to POGO May 30.

    • A year after Snowden, DEF CON and government agencies are friends again
    • The History of Domestic Surveillance in WWI America

      When the Espionage Act passed in 1917, the Federal government left no proverbial stone unturned, using all communication channels available at their disposal to secretly monitor as many citizens of the United States proper as they could, given the technology of the time.

    • The Pentagon is trying to make the internet more anonymous
    • No cloud privacy or security: If NSA wants your cloud data ‘be big boys about it’

      Most of us don’t like the idea of intelligence agencies or law enforcement accessing our data stored in the cloud; that doesn’t mean your data is, by default, being accessed, but it’s likely a matter of principle. As NSA spying scandal revelations rolled out over the last year, many businesses and individuals decided they don’t want their data stored in the US. Countries want their cloud data to be stored locally in hopes of keeping it safe from US snooping. Whether you regard that as a privacy issue or a security issue, one security expert basically says, “Get over it.”

    • Vint Cerf: “It’s not Google that will be tracking you. It will be the cameras.”

      Google’s response to “erosion of privacy” has been to “encrypt everything…to protect people’s interests.” A top Google executive recently spoke to DW and will join the Global Media Forum on June 30 via video link.

    • Surveillance at the Local Level: the Militarization of America’s Police State

      “We believe in transparency here, you have a right to know what the police are up to in your country.” – Camden Police Chief Scott Tomson

      On VICE News, Vikram Gandhi went to Camden, New Jersey to preview the latest technologies and strategies that are being employed to help local law enforcement in the long fought, and long failing, War on Drugs here in America.

    • Facebook App Adds Yet Another Powerful Tracking Feature

      This policy decision is likely the result of a penalty imposed in 2011 by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) that requires the social media mammoth to submit to 20 years of privacy audits conducted by the agency. Another provision of the penalty mandates that any new features offered by Facebook must be “opt in.”

    • Mobile app monitoring startup Crittercism expands to London

      While the company’s technology has already been available to international customers, Levy tells me he’s hearing growing concerns from companies who’d like their cloud infrastructure to be hosted more locally. You can thank Edward Snowden’s NSA leaks for that.

    • Edward Snowden using telepresence robot to attend events internationally

      NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden is making his ‘telepresence’ felt at events across the world with a telepresence robot that transmits a live feed from his computer to a roaming robot.

      Just over a year since Snowden first revealed the extent to which the US National Security Agency (NSA) had been spying on not just US citizens but people across the world, the man is now looking to end his exile in Russia through the means of telepresence.

    • Greenwald, Snowden take on Big Brother state

      When journalist Glenn Greenwald spoke via Skype to the Socialism 2013 conference in Chicago in June last year, it was just three weeks after he had begun reporting on the leaks provided by former National Security Agency (NSA) contractor Edward Snowden that revealed the massive scope of government surveillance.

    • Report: CIA Rendition Jet was waiting in Europe to Snatch Snowden
    • N977GA was waiting to render Snowden back to the U.S.
    • U.S. officials tried really, really hard to catch Edward Snowden but still couldn’t do it
    • Edward Snowden Proves A Difficult Catch For US Authorities
    • Catch me a spy: Secret Snowden rendition plot revealed?
    • NSA’S SECRET SPY CENTER IN BERLIN

      Germany’s foreign intelligence agency officially lifted the lid on some of its worst-kept secrets Friday, acknowledging that half a dozen facilities around the country are in fact spy stations as anyone with Internet access could already figure out.

      The Federal Intelligence Service, known by its German acronym BND, maintained the facade for decades that it had nothing to do with sites bearing cryptic names such as “Ionosphere Institute.” But amateur sleuths long suspected their true identities and posted them on websites such as Wikipedia.

      The subterfuge wasn’t helped by the fact that some sites sport unmistakable signs of spy activity, like the giant golf ball-shaped radomes in Bad Aibling, near Munich until now, the “Telecommunications Traffic Office of the German Armed Forces.”

    • NSA spying ruled unconstitutional by US court
    • The Teenager Who Tripped Up Pelosi Has Words for Obama…And Glenn Beck

      Demeter considers himself a foe of both Democrats and Republicans.

    • 10 fascinating facts about Watergate 42 years later

      9. The Smoking Gun tape as the coup de grace. The release of the Smoking Gun tape, among 64 recordings that Nixon was forced to surrender by the Supreme Court, ended the Watergate drama. The tape showed Nixon ordering a cover-up of the break-in right after it happened in June 1972.

    • Falsifying Evidence on a Smart Phone

      Here’s a way to plant false evidence — call records, locations, etc — on your smart phone. I have no idea how good this will be. Presumably it will be an arms race between programs like this and programs that harvest data from your phone.

    • Congressman asks NSA to provide metadata for “lost” IRS e-mails

      Representative Steve Stockman (R-TX) has sent a formal letter to the National Security Agency asking it to hand over “all its metadata” on the e-mail accounts of a former division director at the Internal Revenue Service.

      “Your prompt cooperation in this matter will be greatly appreciated and will help establish how IRS and other personnel violated rights protected by the First Amendment,” Stockman wrote on Friday.

    • Tor Is For Everyone: Why You Should Use Tor

      EFF recently kicked off our second Tor Challenge, an initiative to strengthen the Tor network for online anonymity and improve one of the best free privacy tools in existence. The campaign—which we’ve launched with partners at the Freedom of the Press Foundation, the Tor Project, and the Free Software Foundation—is already off to a great start. In just the first few days, we’ve seen over 600 new or expanded Tor nodes—more than during the entire first Tor Challenge.

    • On Surveillance: A Conversation

      To mark the one-year anniversary of the Snowden leaks, the PEN Center has invited a number of journals to participate in a collaborative project on the theme of living in a surveillance society. For the American Reader’s contribution, AR editors Alyssa Loh, Uzoamaka Maduka, Jac F. Mullen, and Jonathon Kyle Sturgeon conducted a wide-ranging discussion on surveillance and its impact on narrative, free expression, and the creative arts. The edited transcript of this conversation, found below, also appears on the PEN Center website, along with the full suite of articles produced by the multi-journal collaboration.

    • Stop Including Sender IPs in Email Headers

      To many people, the design of email is fundamentally broken when it comes to security and privacy. That’s the impetus behind projects like the Dark Mail Technical Alliance, LEAP Encryption Access Project, and efforts to make PGP more accessible such as Mailpile, OpenPGP.js and Google’s recently announced Chrome extension, End-To-End. One issue is the contents of email headers. With all the recent talk about long-term technical solutions to enforce privacy by default, here is one thing that all mail server administrators and email providers should do to improve the security risks associated with communicating via email.

    • Not Just the NSA, Even the Local Cops Are Tracking You

      Across the whole of America, you are continuously being monitored by local police forces using a secretive technology without any warrant, while you are completely oblivious to this and thinking that it’s just the NSA, according to media reports.

    • Smart Meters: Are They Spying On You?

      Former CIA Director David Petraeus once stated that WiFi connected devices, such as appliances commonly found inside many homes, will “transform the art of spying.” Petraeus also said that spies will be capable of monitoring Americans without going inside the home or perhaps even acquiring a warrant. He went on to state that remote control radio frequency identification devices, “energy harvesters,” sensor networks, and small embedded severs all connected to an internet network will be all that is necessary for clandestine intelligence gathering.

  • Civil Rights

    • Journalist wrongly facing jail time

      A few of us remember when a young man named James Risen joined The Journal Gazette fresh out of Northwestern’s journalism school and was a reporter here in 1978-79. He did some good reporting. In a yellowed clip file, there are photos of him using a drill and a welder for an article he did about working on the International Harvester Scout assembly line. And he got married at Trinity Lutheran Church while he was here, to his college sweetheart, Penny Blank, who was an editor at The News-Sentinel. They had their reception across the street at the Women’s Club.

    • The Secret Statex

      Ask five of your friends what “rendition” means and chances are you will not get a clear answer.

    • The Latest News On Guantánamo Force-Feeding Videotapes, And Prisoners’ Ongoing Legal Challenges – OpEd

      A month ago, a federal court judge, Gladys Kessler, delivered a historic ruling on Guantánamo, ordering the government to stop force-feeding a hunger striking prisoner, Abu Wa’el Dhiab, and to release to his lawyers videos of his force-feeding and “forcible cell extractions,” whose existence had only recently been discovered by one of his lawyers. She also ordered the government to release his medical records, and to “file a list of all current Standard Operating Procedures/Protocols directly addressing enteral feeding and/or the use of a restraint chair at Guantánamo Bay.”

    • In America, It’s Always Torture Approval Month

      I’ll bet you didn’t know that June is “torture awareness month” thanks to the fact that, on June 26, 1987, the Convention Against Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman, and Degrading Treatment or Punishment went into effect internationally. In this country, however, as a recent Amnesty International survey indicated, Americans are essentially living in Torture Unawareness Month, or perhaps even Torture Approval Month, and not just in June 2014 but every month of the year.

    • Report on CIA to be released within weeks

      Senator Diane Feinstein, the head of the US Senate Intelligence Committee says she believes a secret report into the CIA’s extreme actions against terror suspects post 9 11 will be made public within weeks.

    • The limits of protest

      To reconnect to the central question here of why protest is stumped in Pakistan, despite its critical economic and developmental challenges, it may be appropriate to end with the observation that it is this role of religion that used to be a subject of interest for an older generation that has now been sidelined and considered irrelevant by many post 9/11 scholar-activists.

    • Chris Hedges: American Socrates

      Noam Chomsky, whom I interviewed last Thursday at his office at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, has influenced intellectuals in the United States and abroad in incalculable ways. His explications of empire, mass propaganda, the hypocrisy and pliability of the liberal class and the failings of academics, as well as the way language is used as a mask by the power elite to prevent us from seeing reality, make him the most important intellectual in the country. The force of his intellect, which is combined with a ferocious independence, terrifies the corporate state—which is why the commercial media and much of the academic establishment treat him as a pariah. He is the Socrates of our time.

    • Aboriginal Tent Embassy is Reclaiming the Black Heart of Sydney

      As you approach the Aboriginal tent embassy on the Block in Redfern, inner city Sydney, you see the sacred fire burning within a large circle marked on the ground, serving to cleanse the area. Some ten metres up from the fire, at the edge of the Block, the Aboriginal Housing Company (AHC) has erected a sign that reads: “Warning. Private Property.”

    • Secret Legal Opinions Face Judge’s Scrutiny

      A federal judge demanded access to key opinions by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court related to domestic surveillance so she can decide whether they are fit for public release.

      The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) brought the case at hand under the Freedom of Information Act in 2011, seeking access to opinions in which the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court found some of the National Security Agency’s surveillance unconstitutional.

    • Lord Lucan fled to Greece with ex-MI5 agent’s help

      LORD Lucan was smuggled out of Britain to a remote Greek monastery by a former MI5 agent financed by his wealthy friends, the author of a new book claims.

    • Dear kids: Daddy’s a spy

      By day, we were an embassy family, raising our kids in foreign cultures and foreign languages. Our children’s lives were fairly normal: schools, parties, trips. But my night job was as a CIA operative — a second life my kids couldn’t know about until they were in their mid-teens. We needed to cut them in on the secret when they were old enough to handle the responsibility of keeping it to themselves but still young enough that they hadn’t stumbled across information that might disclose my true mission and then, unthinkingly, share it with their friends. Operatives try to find just the right age, when a kid’s judgment can be trusted not to compromise any operational cover, and by extension put their parents or their sources at risk.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality

  • DRM

    • New ‘parent control’ app remotely turns-off your kid’s smartphone

      With the traditional family dinner and other pastimes on the verge of extinction thanks to an array of distracting hand-held devices, mobile applications are now available for parents to remotely bloc access to smartphones and tablets.

      Are you tired of your child behaving like Pavlov’s salivating dog, mindlessly jumping for some smartphone or tablet every time it rings, sings or vibrates, crashing the solemn family dinner, or disrupting homework time?

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • TTIP Update XXVIII

      The big news this week is an important leak detailing what the European Commission will offer the US in the fields of services and investment. It’s super fresh: the document is currently being circulated to the governments of the EU’s Member States, and comments remain open until 30 June, so we are gaining important insights into real-time discussions that have hitherto been completely hidden from us.

      That makes this leak doubly important: not just for its content, but also for the fact that it took place at all. It shows that despite the European Commission’s attempt to keep key negotiating documents out of the public debate, the Brave New World of leaking whistleblowers means that we will get to see some of them anyway. The only difference is that the Commission looks arrogant and high-handed by refusing to release them officially.

      The leak takes the form of three PDF files – unfortunately they are scans, not searchable documents. They were leaked to the European Federation of Public Service Unions, which apparently represents some 265 unions and 8 million public service workers.

    • Copyrights

      • YouTube to block indie labels as subscription service launches

        YouTube will remove music videos by artists such as Adele, Arctic Monkeys and Radiohead, because the independent labels to which they belong have refused to agree terms with the site.

        Google, which owns YouTube, has been renegotiating contracts as it prepares to launch a music subscription service.

      • City Of London Police Claim That ‘The Tor’ Is 90% Of The Internet, And Is A Risk To Society

        We’ve written a bunch about the City of London Police* and their extrajudicial campaign against “piracy” by trying to scare web hosting and domain registrar firms into taking down websites based on nothing more than the City of London Police’s say so. However, Adrian Leppard, the guy in charge of the City of London Police’s Intellectual Property Crime Unit (funded both by taxpayers and legacy entertainment companies) spoke at an IP Enforcement Summit in London and his comments, relayed by Torrentfreak, should raise questions about whether or not this is the right person to have anything to do with stopping “crime” on the internet…

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