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06.26.14

Links 26/6/2014: Linux is Everywhere; A Lot of Android News

Posted in News Roundup at 5:33 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

  • Get what you paid for with open source

    That right there is the beauty of open source and the benefit of ‘paying’ with your time. We get so used to software that forces us to just deal with the menus and settings they provide that we don’t think to suggest new features when we switch to open source, but if you do you might just get what you’d paid for.

  • Cisco open sources cloud-centric block ciphers

    Cisco is open sourcing block cipher technology to, the company hopes, better protect and control traffic privacy in cloud computing systems

  • With LINCX open source SDN switch, who needs ASICs?

    This past year, Stu Bailey, founder and CTO of network management company InfoBlox, led a research team in developing a fully programmable, open source SDN switch that is not ASIC dependent. The LINCX switch runs on any off-the-shelf Linux or Xen server or on a white box switch and is not network ASIC dependent.

  • Ceph Turns 10: A Look Back

    Although many people at this point have heard Sage’s history of where Ceph came from, I am still often asked questions like “what was the original use case for Ceph?”

    So, in honor of the 10th birthday of Ceph, I thought it might be helpful (and hopefully interesting, given how much I love to hear Sage tell the story) to share Ceph’s origin story and the road to where we are today.

  • Web Browsers

  • SaaS/Big Data

  • Databases

  • Education

    • Why Raspberry Pi is still the white knight of education

      Two years ago, when the Raspberry Pi launched, it was with the intention of improving IT education in the UK. Since then more powerful, better connected or cheaper boards have come onto the market, but the Pi retains its position as the white knight of ICT teaching.

      Why? Because of the community of users that has grown up around it. To find out more we travelled west to Manchester, venue for the second annual Jamboree—a festival of educators, makers and messer-abouters focussed on highlighting how engaging the Pi can be. There, we met 75% of the Raspberry Pi Foundation’s education team—Ben Nuttall, Clive Beale, and Carrie Anne Philbin—to discuss IT teaching in the UK.

  • Business

  • Openness/Sharing

  • Programming

    • Critique of Gedit Syntax Highlighting + PHP Color Schemes

      I’ve always liked PHP’s default syntax highlighting, that is to say the color scheme used by highlight_file(). I’ve often found myself easily grokking code examples on PHP.net when, say, looking up the parameter order for something like imageconvolution(), only to suffer some frustration once going back to Gedit.

    • Eclipse Luna Release Train Now Available

      The Eclipse Foundation is pleased to announce the availability of the Luna release, the annual release train from the Eclipse community. This year 76 projects are participating in the release that includes 61 million lines of code and was developed by over 340 Eclipse committers. This is the ninth year the Eclipse community has planned, developed, and delivered a coordinated release that allows users and adopters to update their Eclipse installations at one time.

    • Intel MIC Run-Time Offload Library Close To Entering GCC

      Intel’s MIC run-time offload library will likely be added to the GNU Compiler Collection in the very near future.

      This month the GCC steering committee approved adding Intel’s offload library to GCC that provides run-time support for their MIC architecture, which is what makes up their high-end “Xeon Phi” hardware.

Leftovers

  • The Muddle of Cameron

    Personally I am very pro-EU. But whatever your stance on the EU, the outright dishonesty of the Cameron approach must be condemned.

    I published a couple of weeks ago that Juncker does not share Barroso’s hostility to Scottish independence: as a former Prime Minister of Luxembourg he does not see the problem with small nations. The British media has been extremely keen to puff up the opposition to Scottish independence by foreign leaders. Cameron and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office have invested huge diplomatic capital into persuading Barack Obama and Li Keqiang to make statements against Scottish independence, while standing next to Cameron for the cameras.

  • Science

  • Health/Nutrition

  • Security

    • Samba Exploits Fixes in All Ubuntu Supported OSes
    • Risk of DDoS Amplification Attacks on NTP Servers Declines

      At the beginning of the year, the United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team (US-CERT) warned of the dangers of distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks that were leveraging Network Time Protocol (NTP) servers to amplify attacks. Apparently, that warning did not fall on deaf ears, as most vulnerable NTP servers have been patched in the last six months, according to a new report from NSFOCUS.

      In December 2013, NSFOCUS found that 432,120 NTP servers around the world could potentially be leveraged in a DDoS attack. In a new analysis released today and conducted during the month of May, NSFOCUS only found 17,647 unpatched servers.

  • Defence/Police/Secrecy/Aggression

  • Transparency Reporting

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • It’s the Oil, Stupid! Insurgency and War on a Sea of Oil

      Events in Iraq are headline news everywhere, and once again, there is no mention of the issue that underlies much of the violence: control of Iraqi oil. Instead, the media is flooded with debate about, horror over, and extensive analysis of a not-exactly-brand-new terrorist threat, the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). There are, in addition, elaborate discussions about the possibility of a civil war that threatens both a new round of ethnic cleansing and the collapse of the embattled government of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki.

    • Fracking May Pollute Groundwater with More Chemicals Than Previously Thought

      It turns out that there may far more contamination from fracking than once thought. Scientists have found that the oil and gas extraction method known and hydraulic fracturing may contribute more pollutants to groundwater than previous research has suggested.

  • Finance

    • The living wage offers a better future for the UK’s one million working poor
    • NYT on Student Loan Crisis: What Crisis Is That?

      Leonhardt dismisses these concerns over debt as “scare stories.” He seems to think that the proper message to give indebted graduates is: Don’t worry, be happy.

    • Skyhook Ships 150 Open-Source Bitcoin ATMs in First Month

      Open-source bitcoin ATM manufacturer Skyhook has announced that it has shipped 150 units since its May launch, and that 70 units have been sent to customers since the beginning of June alone.

    • Congressional Candidate Loves Bitcoin, Attends Bitcoin in the Beltway

      B.J. Gulliot is a Republican running for Washington State’s 2nd Congressional district, and he wants your Bitcoin.

      Gulliot doesn’t appear to be a run-of-the-mill Republican. First off, he is a Republican in Washington State, which just legalized marijuana. He also drives the 100 % electric Nissan Leaf and loves to travel outside of the country. Not exactly the image that comes to mind when you think of the grand ole party.B.J. Gulliot is a Republican running for Washington State’s 2nd Congressional district, and he wants your Bitcoin.

      Gulliot doesn’t appear to be a run-of-the-mill Republican. First off, he is a Republican in Washington State, which just legalized marijuana. He also drives the 100 % electric Nissan Leaf and loves to travel outside of the country. Not exactly the image that comes to mind when you think of the grand ole party.

    • Obama’s Latest Betrayal of America and Americans in Favor of the Big Banks: TISA

      Professor Jane Kelsey of the Faculty of Law, University of Auckland prepared an analysis of the leak that I recommend that everyone read. She, appropriately, emphasizes that any analysis must be tentative because we have only a partial, stale draft through the whistleblower(s).

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

  • Censorship

    • Google Search Removal Lets Europe Purify Its Past

      Bloomberg’s Hans Nichols reports on Google removing search results following a privacy ruling from the European Union and looks at the excitement in Germany for today’s match between Germany and the United States. He speaks on “Bloomberg Surveillance.”

    • Obvious Child: NBC admits error over alleged censorship of abortion comedy

      US TV network concede online advert to promote Sundance hit had removed the word ‘abortion’

    • Censorship laws not needed to tackle prejudice

      On the one hand we have racism, with special legal privileges to censor offensive comment.

      On the other we have sexism and homophobia that do not enjoy the same protections.

      Yet even without them the preparedness of Australians to tackle sexism and homophobia has been on full display.

    • Massachusetts Supreme Court Rules Defendant Must Decrypt Data

      Encryption software has been enjoying a prolonged day in the sun for about the last year. Thanks to the revelations of Edward Snowden about the NSA’s seemingly limitless capabilities, security experts have been pounding the drum about the importance of encrypting not just data in transit, but information stored on laptops, phones and portable drives. But the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court put a dent in that armor on Wednesday, ruling that a criminal defendant could be compelled to decrypt the contents of his laptops.

      The case centers on a lawyer who was arrested in 2009 for allegedly participating in a mortgage fraud scheme. The defendant, Leon I. Gelfgatt, admitted to Massachusetts state police that he had done work with a company called Baylor Holdings and that he encrypted his communications and the hard drives of all of his computers. He said that he could decrypt the computers seized from his home, but refused to do so.

    • Make No Mistake, the Risen Case Is a Direct Attack on the Press

      On June 2nd, the Supreme Court rejected New York Times reporter James Risen’s appeal of a 4th Circuit decision that ruled the government can compel him to reveal his source under oath. The case, one of the most important for reporter’s privilege in decades, means that Risen has exhausted his appeals and must now either testify in the leak trial of former CIA officer Jeffrey Sterling, or face jail time for being in contempt of court. Risen has admirably vowed to go to prison rather than comply.

    • Six flaws in the case against three jailed al-Jazeera journalists
  • Privacy

  • Civil Rights

    • CIA Hit With Two New Lawsuits Over Its Hostile Response To Basic FOIA Requests

      I guess it’s no surprise that the CIA would be institutionally against things like transparency and freedom of information. However, in the last couple weeks there have been two separate lawsuits filed by well known Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) activists over the CIA’s general bad behavior in response to FOIA requests. First up is Michael Morisy and Muckrock, who have sued over a variety of failures by the CIA to adequately respond to a long list of FOIA requests that really should not be problematic at all.

    • A Brief History of the Bipartisan Erosion of Civil Liberties

      Six to 18 hours later you arrive at a military base and are water boarded, sensory deprived, and stress positioned at the very least. You are held indefinitely and without due process. Being stripped of due process can include:

      No formal charges will likely ever be filed against you.
      No right to call a lawyer, your family, or your pastor.
      No judge or magistrate will ever see you.
      No right to remain silent.

      And best of all, as the law reads, you are held, “until the end of hostilities.”

    • UN International Day In Support Of Victims Of Torture
    • Exclusive: Scapegoating the whistle-blower

      How a former CIA officer’s efforts to get Congress to investigate the rendition and torture of a CIA captive failed

    • Problems at the CIA are systemic and reflective of a total lack of leadership and initiative at its senior most level
    • CIA Told To Hand Over Torture Accounts
    • International Day Against Torture: 10 Brutal Techiques that Must be Banned [GRAPHIC CONTENT]

      Water boarding was one of the six CIA’s approved torture methods during Bush’s administration.

    • Guantánamo judge stands firm on CIA ‘black site’ order

      A military judge isn’t backing down from his order to the U.S. government to give defense lawyers details of the accused USS Cole bomber’s odyssey through the CIA’s secret prisons, but may let prosecutors shield the identities of some agents, according to people who have seen a secret Guantánamo war court order.

    • Judge upholds order demanding release of CIA torture accounts

      US government loses attempt to keep accounts of torture of Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri secret

    • Exclusive: CIA Sued For Info Over Spying on Senate Torture Investigation

      Today Jason Leopold and Ryan Shapiro, commonly known as Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) warriors, upped the ante in their fight for more transparency from the CIA relating to its Bush-era torture and rendition program. Leopold, a freelance investigative journalist, and Shapiro, a researcher at MIT, have filed a lawsuit against the CIA compelling the agency to release documents about their spying on Senate lawmakers who were tasked with investigating CIA torture.

    • KFC: No Proof Worker Asked Scarred Child to Leave

      Fried chicken chain KFC said two different investigations have not found any evidence that an employee asked a 3-year-old girl and family members to leave because injuries she suffered in a pit bull mauling disturbed customers.

      KFC spokesman Rick Maynard said Tuesday the company considered the matter closed after an internal investigation by the franchise restaurant in Jackson and an independent probe. Maynard said the company would honor its commitment to donate $30,000 to help with medical bills for Victoria Wilcher.

    • Pentagon Official: The Obama Drone Kill Memo Is Out And Libertarians Were Right — It’s Murder

      On Monday, the White House memo used to justify drone attacks on U.S. citizens was released, and it appears to confirm the worst suspicions of its libertarian critics. The Obama administration had sought to keep the memo secret, and now we know why: Because there are no checks and balances; there are no classified courts. Indeed, the memo reveals that the president of the United States ordered the targeting killing of U.S. citizens overseas — in violation of their constitutional right to due process — sans any type of oversight outside of the executive.

    • Comment: On Assange anniversary, press freedom held hostage

      Julian Assange, the Wikileaks publisher, has begun his third year confined in the Ecuadorean embassy in London. He fled there, receiving political asylum, when Sweden sought his extradition to answer sexual assault allegations. Although both Assange and Ecuador are on record that he was willing to go to Sweden, he feared Sweden would hand him over to the United States. A US grand jury has been investigating him for four years in relation to the case against Chelsea Manning, who was convicted in July 2013 for leaking a massive trove of secret diplomatic documents to Wikileaks.

    • Maverick Filmmaker Says America Destroying The World!

      Last Saturday night I attended one of the most invigorating talks combining my two passions – politics and film – with Hollywood film legend Oliver Stone, the man behind some of the most seminal American films like JFK, Platoon, Born On The 4th of July, Salvador and On Any Given Sunday! Stone is a complete package – a great, firebrand filmmaker, a man of the world, a former Vietnam war veteran who’s turned anti-war and a fierce critic of American imperialism and exceptional ism seeped in bloodshed and killing of innocents around the world!

    • 4 Ways Your Constitutional Right to Privacy Has Been Gutted Since 9/11
    • Four Ways the Fourth Amendment Gets Shredded
    • Abu Qatada: Radical cleric acquitted on terrorism conspiracy charges by Jordan court

      His removal – which followed a treaty between Britain and Jordan guaranteeing his right to a fair and open retrial – won widespread plaudits for Theresa May, the Home Secretary.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality

    • 6 Reasons Broadband Should Be Reclassified (& Regulated) as a Utility

      In order to restrict what you can do and where you can go online, ISPs would need to watch what you do online.

    • ‘Internet’s Own Boy’: Why Aaron Swartz’s story matters
    • Noah Swartz: My Brother Aaron Changed the Internet Forever

      So when mere months after his death Edward Snowden released his cache of internal NSA files, and we the public and the media all struggled to understand it and figure out what to do, it was hard not to miss Aaron immensely. It was a surprise of sorts seeing that I wasn’t the only one who looked to Aaron for guidance, and that I wasn’t the only one having a hard time without him. Remember when Wikipedia blacked out to protest SOPA/PIPA? A lot of people wondered why something similar didn’t happen in protest of the NSA, why something similar didn’t happen more recently in the fight for net neutrality. The answer, in large part, is because Aaron isn’t around anymore to do these things. To motivate and guide us.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • Supreme Court puts Aereo out of business

        Aereo, a TV-over-the-Internet startup whose legal battles have been closely watched, has been ruled illegal by the Supreme Court today. If the company survives at all, its business model will have to change drastically, and it will have to pay fees to the television companies it has been fighting in court for more than two years.

        In a 6-3 opinion (PDF) written by Justice Stephen Breyer, Aereo was found to violate copyright law. According to the opinion, the company is the equivalent of a cable company, which must pay licensing fees when broadcasting over-the-air content. “Viewed in terms of Congress’ regulatory objectives, these behind-the-scenes technological differences do not distinguish Aereo’s system from cable systems, which do perform publicly,” reads the opinion.

      • MOVIE BOSS LOSES THE PLOT OVER ISP PIRACY LIABILITY

        The fight between a movie studio and an Australian ISP has today taken another odd turn. Village Roadshow’s co-CEO now suggests that iiNet must take responsibility for piracy in the same way a car manufacturer apparently would if one of its vehicles killed someone while being driven by a customer. Except they don’t, of course.

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