06.24.14

For Gamers, Not Only ‘Xbox’ Franchise is Dying But Also Windows

Posted in GNU/Linux, Microsoft at 10:46 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Drop

Summary: “Games for Windows Live” may be dead; Steam Machines run GNU/Linux and Microsoft’s attempt to make hardware still fail very badly, and it extends beyond Xbox

THE other day I was approached by someone who had abandoned Windows for games. With Steam OS (and Steam for various other GNU/Linux distributions), one does not need Windows. Historically, many gamers said they kept Windows around just for games, but now the situation is being reversed. There are Windows users who turn to GNU/Linux just for the games. It’s a real problem for Windows and rumours say that Microsoft is officially shutting down “Games for Windows Live”. The ‘damage control’ from Microsoft, or the issuance of face-saving PR, really speaks volumes. “Reports of GFWL’s death have been greatly exaggerated,” says the subheader, but we already know, based on previous dead Microsoft products (many of them games-related), that this is just an attempt to play a linguistic game (semantics) to deny the inevitable. According to this other new review of Microsoft hardware (which has historically been a disaster like Xbox 360), “Microsoft’s latest tablet, the Surface Pro 3 [...] one of the hardest of its kind to repair, giving it a laughably low score of just one out of 10.”

The only thing that keeps Microsoft paid for the time being (and some people locked in) is Microsoft Office, owing to Microsoft crimes that the next post will recall.

Links 24/6/2014: KDE Plasma Media Center 1.3, Linux Mint 17 KDE

Posted in News Roundup at 10:13 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

  • To Get Developer Adoption Today You Have To Build a Community

    Michael Williams, BIRT Product Evangelist & Forums Manager at Actuate, outlines some key points to keep in mind for building your own open source community.

  • Cisco developing open-source block ciphers

    Cisco says it is experimenting with ciphers it claims can better protect traffic privacy in cloud systems and result in bandwidth and storage savings.

  • Cisco Releases Open Source FNR Cipher

    Cisco has released a new open-source block cipher called FNR that is designed for encrypting small chunks of data, such as MAC addresses or IP addresses. The cipher is still in the experimental stage, but Cisco has released the source code and a demo application.

  • 12 challenges for open source projects

    Open source is the combined contributions of millions of independent volunteers. This single concept brings with it a few inherent realities. In this article let’s look at a few potentially concerning points about the nature of open source contributions.

    One of the major, oft-touted benefits of open source software is the diverse, large, and ever ready army of developers contributing to the project. This can be an incredibly powerful argument when demonstrating the value of open source to a corporation. However, the larger the community and the bigger the pool of contributors the more opportunity there exists for problems or potential security risks.

  • Events

    • Where’s the money in open source?’ – limited places for exclusive event

      Open source is a growing and arguably successful strategy for making our corner of the world a better place. While altruism motivates many individuals and some companies to make things open source, others are in it for the money. On the other hand, many companies use or are forced to use open source for its perceived cost-saving value, often disregarding its risks. So what’s the business case for open source?

  • Web Browsers

  • SaaS/Big Data

    • ownCloud Conf coming… And REWE offers a cheap way to get there!

      ownCloud is organizing an ownCloud conference/hackathon at the Technische Universität Berlin this August. And as Steffen Lindner shared on twitter, the German REWE supermarket is offering cheap tickets to go to Berlin from all over Germany during the event!

    • OpenStack speaking opportunities, design guide book sprint, and more
    • Cloud trends point to PaaS, open source as the future

      As the cloud market matures, customer behavior is changing and questions remain about where the true value of the technology will lie in the future.

      A group of industry professionals tackled a variety of topics as part of a panel discussion on the future of the cloud last week at a Cloud Standards Customer Council symposium. They discussed the impact of savvy customers and looked ahead at trends around burgeoning cloud services, vendor lock-in issues and the role of open source.

    • Debate: How Many Open Source Platforms Are Enough?

      “When it gets there, we will support the OpenStack API,” Mikos relented.

      Dholakia noted that CloudStack, like Eucalyptus and OpenStack, has long maintained a “compatibility layer for the Amazon API precisely because, as business folk, we follow the dollars.”

    • GoGrid CEO John Keagy Building Coalition For Open Source Cloud Orchestration Engine

      Over the last several months, GoGrid CEO John Keagy has been quietly holding meetings with partners and rivals alike to share an ambitious plan.

      His brainchild has the potential to shake up the entire cloud services industry by uniting some of its largest players around an open source project: a universal cloud orchestration engine called OpenOrchestration.org.

  • Databases

  • CMS

    • 5 Factors to Help You Choose an Open-Source CMS

      Being able to present that content effectively depends on having the right foundation for your site, and that means choosing a content management system (CMS) that will best match up with your site’s intended purpose.

  • Healthcare

    • What’s behind the success of free and open source healthcare?

      I ask more questions in this survey of free and open source healthcare developers for my thesis project: “The state of open source electronic medical records: An anthropology study.” My goal is to better understand the characteristics, motivations, and knowledge background of healthcare developers in order to determine what is behind the success of free/open source software in healthcare.

  • BSD

    • Clang Is Already Working On “Highly Experimental” C++1z Support

      With LLVM developers already having lots of C++1y / C++14 support implemented, they have begun working on “highly experimental” support for C++1z — the next major revision to the C++ programming language anticipated for release in 2017.

      C++14/C++1y should be officially released this year as a small update over C++11, for which LLVM/Clang (and GCC) already have decent support. In fact, with the current Clang 3.4 stable release all of the key C++11 functionality should be in place.

  • Public Services/Government

  • Licensing

    • Red Hat, Joyent, and others break down licensing barriers

      Open source is an environment where no permission is required to use the source code; the flexibility to do as you wish is already provided. The open source license creates this permissionless environment, and developers are able to gather around a source code commons to meet their individual needs without having to seek approval from anywhere. Requiring a CLA to contribute immediately obstructs this goal.

  • Openness/Sharing

  • Programming

    • Should Everyone Learn to Code?

      “I do think that everybody should learn to code, at least on a basic level,” said Linux Rants blogger Mike Stone. “It would teach them to break down a problem into small, manageable portions and solve each of those parts logically.” It’s actually “less about the code itself than solving a problem logically,” he said. “That’s a skill that I think everybody should have.”

Leftovers

  • Hardware

    • Intel Expresses Interest In AMD’s Mantle API

      Intel has asked AMD about access to their Mantle technology for experimenting with this graphics API alternative to Direct3D and OpenGL.

      Intel and AMD confirmed to PCWorld that the two companies were communicating about Mantle cooperation but “[Intel] remains committed to what it calls open standards like Microsoft’s DirectX API.”

  • Security

  • Defence/Police/Secrecy/Aggression

  • Transparency Reporting

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • Journalism Without Information

      I thought of that when I saw the new issue of Time magazine (6/30/14), which featured a short item on Kevin McCarthy, the new majority leader in Congress. As such, he is someone who certainly will be wielding enormous political power.

    • Scott Walker Says the Dark Money Probe Is ‘Over,’ but He’s Wrong

      The federal judge who halted the state investigation, Rudolph Randa, wrote an opinion so detached from First Amendment precedent, Wisconsin law, and the facts of the case that many legal experts believe that it will be reversed by the Seventh Circuit appellate court reviewing it. (Plus, Randa’s May 6 ruling was a preliminary ruling, not a final decision.) Other legal experts think Randa should not even be involved in the case, given that he is a regular attendee at “judicial junkets” funded by the Bradley and Koch foundations, which are closely tied to Walker and the group that filed the federal lawsuit, Wisconsin Club for Growth.

    • This Is the New Stat Facebook Should Be Worrying About

      “A solid majority of American adults say that social media have no influence at all on their purchasing decisions — suggesting that the advertising may be reaching smaller segments of the market, or that the influence on consumers is indirect or goes unnoticed,” Gallup concluded. The company said people are more likely to consult in-store displays, television commercials, mail catalogs and magazines than a brand’s Facebook or Twitter account when making a purchasing decision.

  • Censorship

    • Russia asks Twitter to block a dozen accounts

      Russia has asked Twitter to block access to a dozen accounts it deems “extremist”, the head of the country’s telecoms watchdog said, as Moscow seeks greater control over internet sites based beyond its borders.

  • Privacy

  • Rights

    • Lord Byron, Terrorist

      The dreadful violence and destruction the West has inflicted and promoted in recent years in its efforts to gain control of the mineral resources of the Middle East continues to play out. Those who see communities with which they identify abroad engaged in military conflict will always produce a small number of people going to join the fight. This is in no sense unusual, and in no sense a threat to ordinary citizens in the UK. The link to terrorism here is entirely a fiction. The unfortunate thing is that the mainstream media allows no outlet for people to mock its false assertions and point out its sinister agenda.

    • CIA Whistleblower John Kiriakou Advocates for Prison Sentencing Reform in New ‘Letter from Loretto’

      Reflecting on mass incarceration in the United States, which he has experienced firsthand during his time in prison at the Federal Correctional Institution of Loretto, Pennsylvania, CIA whistleblower John Kiriakou advocates for prison sentencing reform in his latest letter from jail.

      Firedoglake has been publishing “Letters from Loretto” by Kiriakou, who was the first member of the CIA to publicly acknowledge that torture was official US policy under the George W. Bush administration. He was convicted in October 2012 after he pled guilty to violating the Intelligence Identities Protection Act (IIPA) when he confirmed the name of an officer involved in the CIA’s Rendition, Detention and Interrogation (RDI) program to a reporter. He was sentenced in January 2013, and reported to prison on February 28, 2013.

    • Back to Black: Interrogation Sites on the High Seas
    • Senate’s CIA Torture Report Awaiting Final White House Approval

      The release of a long-delayed, $40 million Senate Intelligence Committee report on the CIA’s “rendition, detention and interrogation” program during the George W. Bush administration is pending final approval from the Obama White House, Politico reported.

    • CIA report now on to White House

      The Obama administration is inching toward declassification of the Senate’s report on the CIA’s controversial interrogation techniques.

      The Central Intelligence Agency has finished redacting sensitive information from a 500-page summary of the 6,800-page report that the Senate Intelligence Committee voted to make public in April, Senate Intelligence Chairwoman Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) said in an interview Monday night.

    • The growing Police State in America
    • Police violence and law enforcement militarization in the greater borderlands

      Slightly more than three months after the police shooting of homeless camper James Boyd catapulted Albuquerque into the international spotlight, activists returned to the streets to advance their movement against police brutality.

      On a blistering Summer Solstice Day, whose blazing mid-day sky was oddly crested by a half-moon, more than 200 people marched up Central Avenue near the University of New Mexico chanting “Justice Now” and “They say justified, we say homicide!”

    • Opinion: It’s Time for Civilian Oversight of OPD

      Based on the most recent report issued by federal monitor Robert Warshaw, the Oakland Police Department will most likely require months of additional monitoring by the court — after eleven years of failure to comply with the Negotiated Settlement Agreement (NSA). No other city in the United States has required this length of time to bring its police department into compliance with a federal consent decree.

    • BRUCE: America’s expanding police state

      We all know about the scope of National Security Agency (NSA) spying. It’s fair to say at this point in our lives that the notion of privacy is all but dead and gone. However, it didn’t start there. In her book, Mrs. Chumley takes us on a ride through history, reminding us of the original intentions of the Founding Fathers versus the assault on the original design by “21st century realities.”

    • For The Last Time, Freedom Isn’t Free
    • 2014 Pioneer Award Nominations Are Now Open

      Nominations are now open for EFF’s 23rd Annual Pioneer Awards, to be presented this fall in San Francisco. EFF established the Pioneer Awards in 1992 to recognize leaders on the electronic frontier who are extending freedom and innovation in the realm of information technology. Nominations are open until midnight on Wednesday, July 2. Nominate the next Pioneer Award winner today!

  • Internet/Net Neutrality

    • New Open Source Firmware Encourages Wi-Fi Sharing

      The “Open Wireless Movement” was devised years ago by the EFF, Free Press, Mozilla and others to advocate for the sharing of broadband via publicly-accessible Wi-Fi hotspots. At the upcoming Hackers on Planet Earth conference, the group says they’re going to unveil new “Open Wireless Router” firmware that simplifies the process of safely and securely offering free Wi-Fi without hindering your own network.

    • What Everyone Gets Wrong in the Debate Over Net Neutrality

      The only trouble is that, here in the year 2014, complaints about a fast-lane don’t make much sense. Today, privileged companies—including Google, Facebook, and Netflix—already benefit from what are essentially internet fast lanes, and this has been the case for years. Such web giants—and others—now have direct connections to big ISPs like Comcast and Verizon, and they run dedicated computer servers deep inside these ISPs. In technical lingo, these are known as “peering connections” and “content delivery servers,” and they’re a vital part of the way the internet works.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • TTIP Update XXX

      As well as all the varied developments I discussed in the previous TTIP update, plenty has been happening recently in the hotly-contested area of investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS). The United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) has published another of its informative reviews of developments in the ISDS field [.pdf]. This edition is particularly welcome since it focuses on the interaction between the EU and US.

    • Copyrights

      • UK ISPs Quietly Block More Torrent Site Proxies

        Several UK Internet providers have quietly added a list of new domains to their secretive anti-piracy blocklists. TorrentFreak was able to confirm that several popular torrent site proxies were added over the past weekend. However, the blocked domains have been quickly replaced by new ones, continuing the cat-and-mouse game that never seems to end.

      • The rules for using images from the internet

        Think it’s fine use downloaded images in your own website, poster or publication? You could be breaking copyright law… We show you how to use images legally and find free images that are available for commercial use.

06.23.14

Links 23/6/2014: New Releases of Opera, MakuluLinux, Netrunner

Posted in News Roundup at 11:29 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • ARM Revolution

    • RUSSIA FINALLY MOVING TO */LINUX

      These will, of course, run some */Linux operating system. At the rate the government replaces PCs this changeover could take years or, if they accelerate the change, just a year or two. I expect countries like China and India have the will and ability to make such changes. This is a clever move because the savings on hardware could more or less pay for the cost of changing software. The move to */Linux accelerates.

    • Feasibility of desktop on ARM cpu

      Thinkpad X60 is old, Core Duo@1.8GHz, 2GB RAM notebook. But it is still pretty usable desktop machine, as long as Gnome2 is used, number of Chromium tabs does not grow “unreasonable”, and development is not attempted there. But eats a bit too much power.

      OLPC 1.75 is ARM v7@0.8GHz, .5GB RAM. According to my tests, it should be equivalent to Core Solo@0.43GHz. Would that make an usable desktop?

    • debootstrap, olpc, and gnome
  • Kernel Space

    • Open-Source Radeon Performance Boosted By Linux 3.16

      Besides the Nouveau driver performance being faster thanks to experimental re-clocking when using the Linux 3.16 kernel, there are also performance improvements to note with some generations of AMD graphics processors.

      The changes found within Linux 3.16 to benefit the Radeon DRM graphics performance are the GPU VM optimizations and large PTE support. Separate from this performance-related work for this kernel-side open-source AMD update is also HDMI deep color support, HDMI audio clean-ups, and other bug-fixes.

    • Transferring maintainership of x86info
    • Linux 3.16-rc2 gets a Saturday evening release
    • Graphics Stack

      • Gallium3D VDPAU & XvMC Support Are Now Single Libraries

        The start of the Gallium3D “mega drivers” patches by Emil Velikov are starting to land in Mesa. First up, the patches to consolidate the Gallium3D VDPAU and XvMC support into single libraries for supporting multiple drivers.

    • Benchmarks

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments/WMs

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

      • Debugging KF5 build failures

        Those familiar with running development versions of KDE software are familiar with the idea of having to sometimes remove their whole development install directory and “start all over” in order to resolve some types of build errors.

      • NetworkManager 0.9.10 Brings Many New Features
      • Section handling progress
      • Tracklist interface for Plasma Media Center

        I have completed the MPRIS specifications Tracklist interface for PMC. Now other applications can view and control the current playlist in PMC over DBus. This was a part of my GSoC project. This interface will allow me to send commands to PMC, asking it to play a particular song in the playlist. After some changes to the Simon MPRIS plug-in, a user will be able to play a song in the current playlist by naming it. As the Simon plug-in is itself based on MPRIS specifications, it will be able to interact with any media player following the MPRIS specs.

  • Distributions

    • New Releases

      • MakuluLinux KDE 6.0 Released !

        The Long Awaited update to the KDE Edition is now over, Stability, Speed and Beauty is what drives this edition. This Edition is a special one for me because I worked on most of it while being extremely sick to the point where I could not walk, with nothing but a bed, laptop and time on my hands I went to work on this baby and this is the result.

      • Netrunner 14 released

        The Netrunner Team today released Netrunner 14 Frontier – 32bit and 64bit versions. The release follows Kubuntus support cycle, giving it a full 5 year support life via the backport repos.

      • Netrunner 14
    • Arch Family

      • KDE 4.13.2 Is Now Available In Manjaro 0.8.10

        Manjaro 0.8.10 has received its Update-Pack 1, getting regular kernel updates and latest upstream packages. This update adds some new Gnome3 packages, latest linux kernels, drivers and many updated applications needed for performing your tasks.

        According to the official announcement available in the Manjaro blog, KF5 got updated to 4.100 version, the latest mesa 10.2.1 with a better working mhwd is included and the following kernels are supported.

    • Debian Family

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Canonical Debuts ‘Orange Box’ for Ubuntu OpenStack Cloud Demos

            Canonical’s Orange Box, the portable server cluster that the company intends to use to showcase OpenStack, MAAS, Juju and other aspects of the Ubuntu Linux-based cloud, is out. Here’s what it’s all about.

            For starters, it’s important to understand what the Orange Box is not: A revenue-generating hardware product from Canonical. The company has given no indication so far that it plans to sell these devices on a large scale—although if you truly want you can buy one, for the equivalent of around $12,900, from TranquilPC Limited, the company that has the contract for manufacturing them.

          • Flavours and Variants

            • Kubuntu 12.04 LTS and 13.10 Updated with KDE 4.13.2

              “Packages for the release of KDE SC 4.13.2 are available for Kubuntu 12.04LTS, 13.10 and our development release. You can get them from the Kubuntu Backports PPA. Bugs in the packaging should be reported to kubuntu-ppa on Launchpad. Bugs in the software to KDE,” said the leader of the Kubuntu project, Jonathan Riddell.

            • elementary OS Changes Its Codename from Isis to Freya

              Many users have raised this issue in the last few weeks and the elementary OS developers were forced to abandon the Isis codename in order to make sure that people don’t make any connections.

              “elementary obviously has no ties to the militant group known as ISIS – and we don’t think people will get us confused – but we want to both recognize the ongoing turmoil and choose a less controversial name. Freya is a Norse goddess of love and beauty. As we push our design forward, a goddess associated with beauty makes a lot of sense. And evoking the powerful emotion of love is always a good thing!” said the devs on their Google+ account.

            • Elementary OS “Isis” Is Now Freya
  • Devices/Embedded

    • Stroke and gestures now on Raspberry Pi touch screen

      The PiTFT is one of our favourite little things for the Raspberry Pi, making it much more portable than it naturally is and opening it up to many more cool projects than you could do before. The one thing it did lack was proper, modern touch screen controls such as swiping and gesture but this has now been added thanks to Xstroke.

Free Software/Open Source

  • Is a code of conduct vital to the success of an open source community?

    Late last month, the Debian project voted to adopt a community code of conduct, a set of guidelines for acceptable participation in its official communication channels. Members agreed to abide by the following principles:

    Be respectful
    Assume good faith
    Be collaborative
    Try to be concise
    Be open

  • Steps to diversity in your open source group

    Coraline Ehmke has developed apps for the web for 20 years. In that time, she’s learned a lot about open source culture and what makes a community of contributors tick. At the Great Wide Open conference this year, Coraline gave a talk about diversity in open source.

  • Jenkins User Conference – Boston [Event Report]
  • Review: Open source proxy servers are capable, but a bit rough around the edges

    Providing a common gateway for web services, caching web requests or providing anonymity are some of the ways organizations use proxy servers. Commercial proxy products, especially cloud offerings, are plentiful, but we wondered if open source or free products could provide enterprise-grade proxy services.

  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • Firefox OS Chromecast-like device leaks online

        Not long after it was revealed that Mozilla was working on adding support for Google’s Chromecast in their mobile iterations of the Firefox browser, it appears that they are also creating a device of their own, with functions similar to the Chromecast. The device, which was created by an unknown hardware manufacturer, looks similar to a Chromecast dongle and runs Firefox OS, according to tweets from Christian Heilmann, a “Mozilla Developer Evangelist“. He describes the device as a “fully open TV casting prototype”, which is pretty much the Chromecast, but more open.

      • Mozilla at Open Source Bridge

        This week Open Source Bridge will kick off in Portland and I’m extremely excited that Mozilla will once again be sponsoring this wonderful event. This will also mark my second year attending.

      • Mozilla develops open-source streaming dongle
      • Mozilla puts a development environment into the browser with WebIDE

        Mozilla cites two major advantages of using WebIDE as compared with developing apps for competing platforms. In-browser development tools are already familiar to the enormous number of Web developers that exist, so using them for application development minimizes the number of new tools and new skills that must be learned.

        Second, they’re extremely lightweight as development tools go. The substantial size of downloading tools such as Xcode or Visual Studio, in addition to the cost of developer licenses on other platforms, can limit their appeal and usability, especially in emerging markets. Putting the tools into the browser means that Mozilla’s reach is near universal.

  • SaaS/Big Data

  • Business

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

  • Openness/Sharing

  • Programming

    • Codescaling Catchup

      I’ve been doing some work with Eclipse Orion, a web-centric IDE with some interesting attributes, so I was interested to see news of forthcoming language support enhancements coming in Orion 6.0. Lots of interesting bits like syntax highlighting that brings in Arduino files, new documentation generators, the ability to use all the tooling while the JavaScript is embedded in HTML, better tunable JavaScript validation with new rules and so on… worth checking out.

Leftovers

  • Man who wore colander on his head for gun licence photo says it is part of Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster’s religion

    AN Adelaide man who had his gun licence photo taken with a colander on his head says it is significant to his religion — the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster — and he should not have had to undertake a psychological test.

  • Hardware

  • Security

    • Syrian Electronic Army hacks Reuters

      Reuters, the international news agency, was reportedly been hacked by the Syrian Electronic Army – a hacking group who support the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and attack news organizations.

  • Defence/Police/Secrecy/Aggression

    • Prosecutor details 14 killings in Blackwater trial

      In a recitation of death and destruction, a federal prosecutor on Tuesday chronicled for a jury the alleged conduct of four Blackwater security guards accused of killing 14 Iraqis and wounding 18 others in downtown Baghdad nearly seven years ago.

      In opening statements at the trial of the four guards, Assistant U.S. Attorney T. Patrick Martin said some of the victims were “simply trying to get out” of the way of gunfire from Blackwater guards. “Fourteen died, 18 injured. For what?” he said.

    • Fournier: Obama Lies as Bad as Bush

      In a review of a new book by a journalist who claims George Bush lied to the country in the run up to the Iraq war, National Journal columnist Ron Fournier insists that Obama has been just as bad as Bush with his constant stream of lies to the country.

    • Crashes mount as military flies more drones in U.S.

      Shortly after the day’s final bell rang and hundreds of youngsters ran outside Lickdale Elementary School with their book bags and lunchboxes, a military drone fell from the sky.

    • Death at Five Times the Speed of Sound
    • Western intervention in Iraq will be a gift to Isis

      Whether it’s bombs or boots that are sent to stop them, the fallout will provide the militants with dangerously effective propaganda for their cause

    • ‘Stop saying ‘uh-oh’ while you’re flying’: Drone crash pilot quotes unveiled

      Drones are often called unmanned aircraft. But there is a lot of human drama when they crash. Drone pilots and other crew members swear, scream and yell at their remote-control video screens when the aircraft fly out of control. Those moments are often captured by audio recorders in ground control stations.

    • Israeli youngster killed in blast on border with Syria
    • Israel strikes Syrian military targets in retaliation for deadly attack

      The Israeli military struck Syrian army positions in the Golan Heights overnight Sunday in retaliation for an attack earlier in the day that killed an Israeli teen and injured three other people.

      Fighter jets fired missiles at nine targets on the Syrian side of the border, including military command posts and firing positions. An artillery unit that uses high-precision Tamuz missiles was also employed in the strike, the military said in a statement. It confirmed direct hits.

    • Has drone campaign in Pakistan been revived?

      For the first time in nearly six months, U.S. drone strikes hit Pakistan’s tribal region three times in less than a week, killing at least 20 militants with suspected ties to the Haqqani network.

      The hiatus was the longest pause in the controversial CIA program since 2006, and the drones’ sudden return begs the questions: Why now? And is this the beginning of a renewed drone campaign in Pakistan?

    • Iraq and the Persistence of American Hegemony

      With ‘official’ America debating how to respond to what at present appears to be a Saudi-Iranian proxy war in Iraq the question both within and outside of the US is: why do America and the Americans have any say in the matter? The last quarter century of US engagement in Iraq has been a series of military and geopolitical blunders with catastrophic consequences across the Middle East. The answer of course, as it was with the mis-sold invasions of 1990 and 2003, is Operation Iraqi Liberation, oil. The dim hubris of Bush / Cheney / Rumsfeld / Rice that broke ‘Iraq’ into sectarian factions has been met by leading Democrats with claims that the war was ‘mismanaged’ and that Iraq remains of some vaguely specified ‘vital interest.’ The moral, ethical and societal sickness that has US President Obama now sending murder robots (drones) and additional troops to force the will of ‘official’ Washington onto what remains of the national government of Iraq misses that it was this very same will that caused the social / political catastrophe now claimed to be in need of rectification.

    • Shaw details Cleburne links to JFK assassination

      Shaw argues that evidence available, evidence gone missing and discrepancies simply don’t add up to the official story that Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone that day.

    • FORMER TOP CIA OFFICIAL REVEALS GULEN RELATIONS

      Speaking to the BBC on Friday , former top CIA official, Graham Fuller, admitted that he wrote a reference letter for the Gülen movement leader, Fethullah Gülen, after the FBI resisted granting him permanent residency status between 2006 to 2010.

      The former top official and Middle East expert, yet claimed that there was no relation between the Gülen movement and CIA, during the BBC interview on his newly released book “Turkey and the Arab Spring: Leadership in the Middle East.”

    • UN hears testimony that contradicts Cuban account of dissident’s death

      The United Nations Human Rights Council, currently sitting in Geneva, has heard testimony from leaders of the Venezuela protest movement and from the survivor of the car crash that killed Cuban dissident Oswaldo Payá.

      The hearings on human rights in Venezuela and Cuba, was organized by a coalition of NGO’s as an official event inside the Human Rights Council in Geneva on June 17.

    • Iraq, ISIS and intervention: Just what is going on?

      A high Israeli official was quoted recently saying it was Iran’s influence that is most dangerous in the region, not that of ISIS. Of course, that should tell us a great deal. In this part of the world, Israel’s views count for far more than those of all the other countries put together, at least, so far as the United States’ government is concerned, the ridiculous lopsidedness in that reflecting the best Congress campaign funding can buy.

    • Kurds say they warned MI6, CIA about ISIL

      Five months ago, a Kurdish intelligence “asset” walked into a base and said he had information to hand over.

      The capture by jihadists the month before of two Sunni cities in western Iraq was just the beginning, he said. There would soon be a major onslaught on Sunni territories.

    • Britain and US ‘neglected alert to Iraq jihadist takeover’
    • CIA trained ISIL in Jordan: Report

      A new report says the extremist Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) militants were trained by the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) in Jordan more than two years ago.

    • American Senator: US arming ISIL terrorists

      Senator Rand Paul said the US government has been arming ISIS militants in Syria and funding its allies.

    • Don Obama, Capo di Tutti Capi

      Indeed, Mafia Dons have learned the hard way after RICO not to give clear cut instructions to their operatives. Obama, our Capo Di Tutti Capi, has learned his lesson well. He lets his capos — heads of the IRS, DOJ, CIA, know how to proceed with vague injunctions that set the tone.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • [April] Why US fracking companies are licking their lips over Ukraine

      From climate change to Crimea, the natural gas industry is supreme at exploiting crisis for private gain – what I call the shock doctrine

    • Crude Awakening: 37 years of oil spills in Alberta

      Timelapse: All spills of crude oil crude bitumen and synthetic crude in Alberta each year from 1975-2012. Each dot is one spill; dot size does not indicate spill size. Source: Energy Resources Conservation Board

      Alberta’s had an average of two crude oil spills a day, every day for the past 37 years.

      That makes 28,666 crude oil spills in total, plus another 31,453 spills of just about any other substance you can think of putting in a pipeline – from salt water to liquid petroleum.

  • Finance

    • Tens of thousands march in London against cuts in public and welfare services

      An estimated 50,000 people marched through London, including supporters of Stop the War, CND and other peace groups who called for warfare spending to be cut and not welfare services.

    • Revealed: Asian slave labour producing prawns for supermarkets in US, UK

      Slaves forced to work for no pay for years at a time under threat of extreme violence are being used in Asia in the production of seafood sold by major US, British and other European retailers, the Guardian can reveal.

    • The Pakistani women behind the official FIFA World Cup balls make $182 per year each

      She has no idea who Lionel Messi is and her home country isn’t even playing, but Pakistani mother-of-five Gulshan Bibi can’t wait for the World Cup – because she helped make the balls.

    • It’s Official: The Boomerang Kids Won’t Leave – NYTimes.com

      The NY Times, in It’s Official: The Boomerang Kids Won’t Leave, explores the trend of increasing numbers of young people continuing to live with their parents after college.

      The article notes that one in five people in their 20s and early 30s currently lives with parents, and 60 percent of all young adults receive financial support from parents. In the prior generation, only one in 10 young adults moved back home and few received financial support.

      The common explanation for the change is that young people had the misfortune of growing up during several unfortunate and overlapping economic trends.

      Today, almost 45 percent of 25-year-olds, have outstanding loans, with an average debt above $20,000, and more than half of recent college graduates are unemployed or underemployed, causing them to make substandard wages in jobs that don’t require a college degree.

  • Censorship

  • Privacy

    • Dropcam acquired by Google owned Nest

      Dropcam, a San Francisco based home surveillance company has on their official blog post revealed that they have been acquired by Nest. Nest, a Google owned company, confirmed on their blog the acquisition and also the fact that this acquisition will not change anything for either of the companies’ immediate future, as both Nest products as well as the Dropcam products will be available to customers without any change. The deal went down for $555 million.

    • A history of the federal government’s ‘lost’ e-mails

      A watchdog group this week called on Congress to investigate federal record-keeping practices to determine why the government has repeatedly lost e-mails that could shed light on alleged wrongdoing.

    • Mass Surveillance in Britain

      European officials have often acted as though excessive government surveillance was solely an American problem. The recent release of a legal statement from a senior British counterterrorism official, Charles Farr, shows that the United States government is certainly not alone in justifying such practices.

    • The Majority Has Spoken: Email Privacy Reform Possible Right Now

      Yesterday, Reps Reps. Ron Desantis (R-Fla.) and Cedric Richmond (D-La.) became the 217th and 218th members of the House to sign on to the Email Privacy Act. More than half of the 435 members of the House of Representatives now formally support updating the outdated law governing the privacy of our electronic communications and requiring police to get a warrant before they read our emails, look at our online photo albums, or view our texts. Among those 218 members who have endorsed reforming the Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) are 136 Republicans – more than half of the members of the majority party.

    • Vulturization: ‘Privacy’ is fightin’ words to cloud touters – they get angry

      Being as these folks stand up OpenStack, I also took the time to find out what it’s like to work with the community and whether it’s really as much of a pain to work with as everyone claims.

    • Snowden’s year in Russia: From airport hideout to mystery location
    • Snowden collects documents to extend asylum on one-year anniversary of stay in Russia
    • A ‘Cool War’?

      With the revelations of Edward Snowden, Beijing has fittingly dismissed the nuanced American distinction. Snowden revealed that the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) has infiltrated into Huawei Technologies, a hi-tech Chinese multinational company. A recent Foreign Policy article confirmed that an elite NSA ultra-secret China hacking group “successfully penetrated” Chinese computers and its telecommunication industry for the past 15 years.

    • Matt Robinson: General public must oversee our overseers

      Take for example a situation happening across the United States, but most recently exemplified in a records request in Florida. The American Civil Liberties Union filed a public records request with a police department in Sarasota, Fla., for information on a surveillance tool called “Stingray,” which is used by law enforcement agencies across the country to mass collect data.

    • Sirota: US government at war with itself over civil liberties
    • Glenn Greenwald expands exposure of privacy violators

      “We’re working on that story now,” said Greenwald, who grew up in New York and lives in Rio de Janeiro with his longtime partner, David Miranda. “It’s highly likely it will be out before the end of the month. It will be reporting on the people the NSA is targeting domestically.”

    • 4 July: Annual Independence FROM America demo at NSA Menwith Hill

      Join the Campaign for the Accountability of American Bases (CAAB) at the main entrance to NSA Menwith Hill, HG1 4QZ, on Friday 4 July from 5pm to 9pm for the annual “Independence FROM America” demonstration.

    • PM makes off-the-record visit to NSA

      Prime Minister John Key took a secret trip to the NSA spy agency while he was in Washington last week.

      It is not surprising that he went — he made the same trip the last time he was in Washington in 2011.

      This time, it was left off the published schedule of meetings that is handed out to the news media. Last time, it was declared.

    • US spying: Who do you believe? Snowden or Key?

      The results of a Stuff Ipsos poll released last week shows 71.6 per cent of Kiwis believe United States spy agencies are gathering data on New Zealanders and 61.8 per cent of those people do not support the US being able to do so.

    • Key’s off-the-record visit to controversial spy HQ

      Prime Minister John Key took a secret trip to the NSA spy agency while he was in Washington last week.

      It is not surprising that he went — he made the same trip the last time he was in Washington in 2011.

    • NSA Hurting Millennials’ Way of Life

      Millennials are criticized for broadcasting too many intimate details of our everyday lives online. We readily publish what we had for lunch, when we went to the gym, relationship status updates, and more. Things more senior generations might deem “TMI” are standard online chatter for us; however, there is a method to the madness. Global connectivity has enabled us to open new lines of communication with people across town, across the country, and across the world. We see value in being able to speak freely, giving us access to new ideas and cultures through comparing the human experience, hemisphere to hemisphere.

    • Redeeming NIST’s Reputation

      Bill Would Ban NSA from Undermining NIST Crypto Standards

    • Encrypted Email Service ProtonMail Soars Past $160,000 Campaign Goal
    • Walsh: Federal government has no right to spy on Americans
    • NSA mixing rule of law with cloak-and-dagger spy world – expert
    • US Funds “Terror Studies” to Dissect and Neutralize Social Movements

      The U.S. Department of Defense is immersed in studies about…people like you. The Pentagon wants to know why folks who don’t themselves engage in violence to overthrow the prevailing order become, what the military calls, “supporters of political violence.” And by that they mean, everyone who opposes U.S military policy in the world, or the repressive policies of U.S. allies and proxies, or who opposes the racially repressive U.S. criminal justice system, or who wants to push the One Percent off their economic and political pedestals so they can’t lord it over the rest of us. (I’m sure you recognize yourself somewhere in that list.)

    • ‘Double standards’: Apple implements MAC anti-tracking technique used by Aaron Swartz

      Apple is going to implement random MAC addresses technology in its iOS8 devices, an anonymity-granting technique which late computer prodigy Aaron Swartz was accused of using to carry out his infamous MIT hack.

      Swartz, who faced criminal prosecution on charges of mass downloading academic documents and articles, was also accused of using MAC (Media Access Control) spoofing address technology to gain access to MIT’s subscription database.

    • New Eavesdropping Equipment Sucks All Data Off Your Phone

      In a Capitol Hill hearing room two summers ago, privacy activist Christopher Soghoian organized a stunning demonstration of some new police surveillance technology. A small group of congressional staffers were handed “clean” cellphones and invited to start calling each other while, off to the side, a Berkeley communications researcher named Kurtis Heimerl turned on his gear. After a few minutes, Soghoian told the staffers to hang up—and then Heimerl played back their conversations. Not only that, the two men told the staffers, the digital eavesdropping equipment was capable of sucking all the data from their phones—emails, contact files, music, videos—whatever was on them.

    • Can you spy on a phone when it is turned off?
    • Snowden Gets German Fritz Bauer Award for Exposing US Intelligence

      Former US intelligence contractor Edward Snowden has been awarded the Fritz Bauer Prize of the German Humanist Union, a prominent civil rights organization, for exposing the controversial surveillance practices of the NSA and its accomplices.

    • Little reform since Snowden spilled the beans

      A year has passed since the American former intelligence contractor Edward J. Snowden began revealing the massive scope of Internet surveillance by the U.S. National Security Agency.

      His disclosures have elicited public outrage and sharp rebukes from close U.S. allies like Germany, upending rosy assumptions about how free and secure the Internet and telecommunications networks really are.

      Single-handedly Snowden has changed how people regard their phones, tablets and laptops, and sparked a public debate about the protection of personal data.

    • More Foreign Governments Provide NSA with Support for Global Data Surveillance

      The National Security Agency’s (NSA) reach of spying on worldwide communications is even broader than previously reported, according to new information leaked by whistleblower Edward Snowden.

      In addition to working with allied spy agencies in the United Kingdom, Canada, New Zealand, and Australia, the NSA has partnered with other, unnamed foreign governments to access enormous volumes of emails, phone calls and Internet data.

  • Civil Rights

    • Parliament is sexist, masculine and out of date, say British women

      A poll about attitudes to Westminster on the influential parenting website Mumsnet has revealed startling levels of disillusionment with a male-dominated political system

    • sRepressing World Cup Protests — A Booming Business for Brazil

      On June 12, Brazilian police fired tear gas on a group of 50 unarmed marchers blocking a highway leading to the World Cup arena in São Paulo. On June 15 in Rio de Janeiro another 200 marchers faced floods of tear gas and stun grenades in their approach to Maracana stadium. Armed with an arsenal of less lethal weapons and employing tactics imported from U.S. SWAT teams in the early 2000s, police clad in riot gear are deploying forceful tactics, wielding batons and releasing chemical agents at close range. In Brazil, this style of protest policing is not only a common form of political control, but also a booming business.

    • Total US Tab Tops $5.2 Billion For Guantanamo Prison

      The cost for this year, $454.1 million to operate, staff and build at the prison complex, comes from a report by the Defense Department’s Office of the Comptroller.

    • The USS Guantanamo

      No way, no how will President Obama send a terrorist to Guantanamo Bay. But how about a few weeks on a Navy warship to chat with U.S. interrogators without a Miranda warning? Welcome aboard the President’s floating not-so-secret prison.

    • Iraqis Are Not ‘Abstractions’

      When I saw the Washington Post’s banner headline, “U.S. sees risk in Iraq airstrikes,” I thought, “doesn’t that say it all.” The Post apparently didn’t deem it newsworthy to publish a story headlined: “Iraqis see risk in U.S. airstrikes.” Then, in an accompanying article, authors Gregg Jaffe and Kevin Maurer observed nonchalantly that “Iraq and the Iraqi people remain something of an abstraction,” a point that drove me to distraction.

    • Iraq’s Next PM? Ahmed Chalabi, Chief Peddler of False WMDs, Meets US Officials as Maliki Falters

      Pressure is mounting on Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki to form a less sectarian government or to resign. A representative of the influential Shiite cleric Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani called for the creation of what he described as a new “effective” government. On Thursday, The New York Times revealed the U.S. ambassador in Iraq, Robert Beecroft, and the State Department’s top official in Iraq, Brett McGurk, recently met with the controversial Iraqi politician Ahmed Chalabi, who has been described as a potential candidate to replace al-Maliki. Chalabi is the former head of the Iraqi National Congress, a CIA-funded Iraqi exile group that strongly pushed for the 2003 U.S. invasion. The INC helped drum up pre-war claims that Saddam Hussein was developing weapons of mass destruction and had links to al-Qaeda. The group provided bogus intelligence to the Bush administration, U.S. lawmakers and journalists. We are joined by Andrew Cockburn, Washington editor for Harper’s Magazine.

    • New Hollywood assassination film raises hackles in North Korea

      The Interview, a new action comedy starring Seth Rogen and James Franco, has elicited choice comments from North Korea for showing the “desperation” of American society. Due out in October, the film tells the tale of two US journalists who are given the opportunity to interview North Korea’s leader Kim Jong-un, then recruited by the CIA to assassinate him.

    • Rekindle ties with Arab League, Rogers says

06.22.14

IRC Proceedings: March 30th, 2014 – June 21st, 2014

Posted in IRC Logs at 5:51 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

IRC Proceedings: March 30th – April 5th, 2014

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IRC Proceedings: April 6th – April 12th, 2014

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IRC Proceedings: April 13th – April 19th, 2014

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IRC Proceedings: April 20th – April 26th, 2014

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IRC Proceedings: April 27th – May 3rd, 2014

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IRC Proceedings: May 4th – May 10th, 2014

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IRC Proceedings: May 11th – May 17th, 2014

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IRC Proceedings: May 18th – May 24th, 2014

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IRC Proceedings: May 25th – May 31st, 2014

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IRC Proceedings: June 1st – June 7th, 2014

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IRC Proceedings: June 8th – June 14th, 2014

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IRC Proceedings: June 15th – June 21st, 2014

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Enter the IRC channels now

Links 22/6/2014: New Linux RC, FreeBSD RC

Posted in News Roundup at 2:19 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

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Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

  • Will Carriers Step Up to Open Challenge?

    Telecom service providers are being asked in multiple ways to put their money where their mouths are when it comes to supporting open source software and technology in the move to virtualization.

    The most obvious move those willing to embrace openness will make is joining the new open source project — called Open Platform for NFV, or OPN — that a number of telecom operators associated with the ETSI Network Functions Virtualization Industry Specification Group are setting up with the Linux Foundation , already home to OpenDaylight . (See Is Open Source the New De Facto Standard?)

  • Google Chrome PDF Engine is now Open Source
  • Google open sources PDF rendering
  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • Mozilla is Working on a Firefox OS-powered Streaming Stick à la Chromecast

        Mozilla took the world by surprised when it announced that it was developing a Firefox operating system that would be used for mobile phones, especially in developing markets. Now, there are already a few devices out there, but it seems that this isn’t the last step for the company whose name is still associated with the famous web browsers.

  • SaaS/Big Data

    • ForgeRock Raises $30M for Open-Source Identity-Relationship Tech

      ForgeRock’s $30 million capital injection will help the company drive adoption of identity-relationship management technology.

    • OpenStack by the numbers

      Haven given that warning, I still think there’s good value in project statistics. They say something about trajectory, and when used in conjunction with solid knowledge of why the numbers are what they are, they can tell a good bit about comparative success. And they can be inspiring. “Look what we’ve done” you can say to your community, as you provide them with the raw data about what they’ve created. They can also say something about the relative participation in a project, as with Chuck Dubuque’s look at how to gauge the contributions of the various corporate contributors to OpenStack.

    • OpenStack: What It Is, What It Does

      OpenStack is a cloud operating system that controls large pools of compute, storage and networking resources throughout a data center, all managed through a dashboard that gives administrators control while empowering their users to provision resources through a web interface. In general, it is an infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) operating system for building and managing cloud computing platforms for public, private and hybrid clouds.

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

  • CMS

  • Education

    • Are there too many computers in the classroom?

      I could not disagree more with Dvorak. One of the things I always hated when I was in school was having to sit in a classroom and listen to a teacher drone on endlessly about a subject. It felt like it was taking forever for them to get to the point and present the information. Really, I remember doodling on my notebook while the teacher went on and on in what seemed like an endless monologue about whatever.

      Maybe that was just my perception at the time (I graduated high school back in 1987), but I would much rather have had faster access to all of the course information rather than waiting for the teacher to regurgitate it verbally to me. Oral communication in person is such a slow and ponderous way to transfer information compared to what you can do with today’s computers and tablets.

  • Healthcare

    • Some patients are eager to share their personal data

      While many researchers encounter no privacy-based barriers to releasing data, those working with human participants, such as doctors, psychologists, and geneticists, have a difficult problem to surmount. How do they reconcile their desire to share data, allowing their analyses and conclusions to be verified, with the need to protect participant privacy? It’s a dilemma we’ve talked about before on the blog (see: Open Data and IRBs, Privacy and Open Data). A new project, Open Humans, seeks to resolve the issue by finding patients who are willing—even eager—to share their personal data.

  • BSD

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

    • GCC Allowed To Add Offloading Library To Code-Base

      The GCC steering committee has ruled on allowing a foreign library for compute offloading into the GNU Compiler Collection.

      The first library in question is the poorly named “liboffload”, which handles offloading work to Intel’s high-end Xeon Phi compute cards. Permission was needed from the GCC steering committee for introducing a foreign library plus that there’s some GPLv2.1 header files and new sources.

    • Democracy and Software Freedom

      It is striking that, despite talking a lot about freedom, and often being interested in the question of who controls power, these five criteria might as well be (Athenian) Greek to most free software communities and participants- the question of liberty begins and ends with source code, and has nothing to say about organizational structure and decision-making – critical questions serious philosophers always address.

      Our licensing, of course, means that in theory points #4 and #5 are satisfied, but saying “you can submit a patch” is, for most people, roughly as satisfying as saying “you could buy a TV ad” to an American voter concerned about the impact of wealth on our elections. Yes, we all have the theoretical option to buy a TV ad/edit our code, but for most voters/users of software that option will always remain theoretical. We’re probably even further from satisfying #1, #2, and #3 in most projects, though one could see the Ada Initiative and GNOME OPW as attempts to deal with some aspects of #1, #3, and #4

    • Staying free – should GCC allow non-free plug ins?

      To this extent, the argument between LLVM and GCC is a retread of the historic differences between GNU/Linux and the BSDs, between ‘open source’ and free software. Open source developers allow the code to be reused in any context, free or proprietary. Free software is restrictive in that it insists that the code, and any modifications to the code, must remain free in perpetuity. Advocates of free software would argue that the integrity of copyleft licensing has been instrumental in the spread of GCC, and has taken Linux and free software into places it would not otherwise have reached, and that free software cannot be bought or corrupted by commercial or corporate interests. Open source advocates argue that open source is more free because the user has no restrictions and can do what he or she likes, including developing closed source versions of the code.

  • Public Services/Government

  • Openness/Sharing

  • Programming

    • PHP 5.6 Is Nearly Ready For Release, RC1 Is Out

      PHP 5.6 is on track for its official release this summer as a major update to PHP5 while those looking to do some pre-production testing, RC1 is now available.

    • Replacing freecode: a proposal

      Web frameworks have gotten much more powerful since the original Freshmeat was built 17 years ago; today, I think building a replacement wouldn’t be a huge project. It is not, however, something I am willing to try to do alone. Whether or not this goes forward will depend on how many people are willing to step up and join me. I figure we need a team of about three core co-developers, at least one of whom needs to have some prior expertise at whatever framework we end up using.

    • ESR Mulls Replacing freecode

      The concept is interesting. Distros do a lot of similar things as does Sourceforge, GitHub and Distrowatch. A site specializing in distributing release-announcements could have a niche. On the one hand, with the millions of projects that might use the service, the site might be too busy to be useful. On the other hand, a good search engine might make the site scale well. Perhaps Google could provide the searching function.

  • Standards/Consortia

Leftovers

  • After 47 years in print, Computerworld finally goes digital-only
  • Happy Midsummer Solstice! with A Kopimist Gospel

    Today is the Midsummer Solstice, which has been celebrated as a holy day by most religions throughout human history. and is also recognized by science as one of the four special days in the solar year.

    Kopimism is one of Sweden’s newest religions. On or about the winter solstice of 2011, the Swedish authority Kammarkollegiet — blessed be its name! — officially recognized by Kopimism as a religion, just like Christianity, Islam, Buddhism and others.

  • Science

  • Health/Nutrition

    • American ‘Healthcare’ Exceptionalism: Highest Costs, Worst Care
    • The measles crisis

      Suspicion increased when Dr Shakeel Afridi was revealed to have been running a fake hepatitis vaccination programme for the CIA to help in its search for Osama bin Laden. Now with deaths that can be linked to a vaccine, and that too a vaccine purchased from India, our public health goals will be that much harder to achieve. Those responsible for the deaths should of course be held responsible but it will now become very difficult to contain the damage they have caused.

  • Security

  • Defence/Police/Secrecy/Aggression

    • The New Ground-Based Defense Missiles Cost $40 Billion We Could Use For A Lot of Other Things. Oh, and They Don’t Work.

      A decade after it was declared operational for bogus political reasons – “you just needed to build them” – the $40 billion Ground-based Midcourse Defense System, or GMD, “cannot be relied on,” says a blistering report from the L.A. Times. It has an “abysmal” record: It has failed more tests than it has passed, has “performed less well than people had hoped,” has been hyped by U.S. officials who claimed it was more reliable than it was, has failed tests far less stringent than real-life scenarios would be, and over time has continued to perform worse, not better, despite years of tinkering, failing five of its last eight tests. It was also designed for a threat that likely doesn’t exist, or in the immortal words of Charles Pierce, “not to defend ourselves against missiles but, rather, as a platform for international dick-waving.” Oh yes, and members of Congress – the guys who battled over how much to cut food stamps – want a bunch more.

    • Why Bush and Blair Should Be Prosecuted for War Crimes

      Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair recently stated that air strikes and drones should be used once again on Iraq to stem recent gains by extremists in that country. Mr. Blair is oblivious of the responsibility he shares with former U.S. president George W. Bush on account of one of the most serious breaches of international law in recent times. The prosecution of Mr. Blair and Mr. Bush, along the lines of similar trials conducted in Argentina, Chile and Peru, is the only fitting response to such careless remarks.

    • S.Korean Soldier Said to Kill 5 Comrades at Border

      All able-bodied South Korean men must serve about two years in the military under a conscription system aimed at countering aggression from North Korea.

    • Washington Digest: House declines to put its foot down on Iraq

      “We must not let history repeat itself,” Lee said. “Calls to be dragged back into a war in Iraq must be rejected.”

    • Rolling Back the Clock? –Progressive Style?

      In 1981, my first professor in political science, the late Dr. Charles Benjamin, explained that roll-back-the-clock was the plan of the new Ronald Reagan administration in terms of American foreign policy. We had just come out of the Carter era–the only time that USA presidential leadership had sincerely tried to put the CIA and NSA leadership in their societal places (subservient to the executive branch and constitution) and had unveiled a practicing Human-Rights policy that would support popular people’s rebellions against dictators around the globe. During the Carter term, from Central America to the Middle East, the USA foreign policy had allowed people’s movements to have their day in the sun.

    • What Megyn Kelly Should Have Asked Dick Cheney

      The former vice president got his comeuppance on Fox News last Wednesday, producing a minor news story.

      Dick Cheney and his daughter Liz had published an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal advocating renewed U.S. military involvement in Ira to prevent a seizure of power by the al-Qaeda spin-off ISIS (or ISIL) and opining, “Rarely has a U.S. president been so wrong about so much at the expense of so many.”

      Citing this comment, Fox anchor Megyn Kelly unexpectedly snapped, “But time and time again, history has proven that you got it wrong as well sir.” She referred specifically the false accusation about weapons of mass destruction used to sell the Iraq War. A flustered Cheney fumbled his interrogator’s name (“Reagan, um, Megyn”) before declaring, “You’ve got to go back and look at the track record.” (As though Megyn were doing something other than precisely that.) “We inherited a situation where there was no doubt in anybody’s mind about the extent of Saddam’s involvement in weapons of mass destruction. … Saddam Hussein had a track record that nearly everybody agreed to.”

      In other words, the unfortunately mistaken but universal belief in Saddam’s WMD preceded the Bush-Cheney administration, was part of its heritage but in no way its invention. Everybody was honestly mistaken. Thus he utterly rejects personal responsibility for crediting, promoting it, and using it to justify a war he badly wanted.

    • Rand Paul Defends Obama Against Dick Cheney

      “Do you think Dick Cheney is a credible critic of this president?” host David Gregory asked Paul, quoting from Cheney’s op-ed in which Cheney wrote, “Rarely has a U.S. president been so wrong about so much at the expense of so many.”

    • Utah is where Army learns to fly drones better

      Two types of drones — the MQ-1C Gray Eagle and the RQ-7 Shadow — began flying in tandem with the Apaches. The drones’ cameras and sensors transmit the intelligence to the Apache crew — showing it what lies over the hill so the Apaches don’t have to expose themselves to find a target to attack or don’t fly into an ambush.

    • Drone strikes more right than wrong, Key says

      New Zealand has no issue with US drones striking terrorists in Iraq, PM John Key told TV1′s Q+A this morning.

      “They sometimes go wrong and that’s a great tragedy.

      “On balance of benefit, are they more often right than they’re wrong? I think the answer is ‘yes’,” he said following a meeting with US President Barack Obama.

    • No consensus on ‘targeted’ military action in Iraq

      President Barack Obama announced on Thursday that the United States is “prepared to take targeted and precise military action” in Iraq if the situation on the ground requires it. The president added that if he decides to take military action in Iraq, he would consult with Congress and world leaders.

    • Iraq veterans now wonder if all their sacrifices were for naught

      Mike Dizmang thinks about the Iraqi children who shook his hand and smiled when he told them that all would be OK in the end.

    • The Drone Memo Cometh

      In response to consolidated lawsuits filed by the ACLU and The New York Times, the Second Circuit recently ordered the Obama administration to disclose (with redactions) one of the legal memos authorizing the government’s premeditated killing of Anwar al-Aulaqi, an American citizen. The government has challenged certain aspects of the court’s decision, apparently with some degree of success (more on that below), and it has managed to defer the release of the memo by two months. To its credit, though, the court appears unwilling to allow the government to delay the release of the memo indefinitely. If the court holds to a plan it set forth ten days ago, it will publish the memo itself this coming week.

    • US aid of f $96 million approved for Pakistan
    • The crisis of ISIS in Iraq: was America the midwife?

      Communities Digital News published a report outlining strong circumstantial evidence that arms transferred from the Special Mission Compound in Benghazi before the attack on September 11, 2012, ended up in Syria and are now being used against the Iraq government. Media reports and Pentagon / State Department statements have confirmed that U.S. weapons are being deployed by ISIS in Iraq.

      More disturbing information is emerging to bookend these revelations. The United States probably trained elements of the ISIS militia, which has accounted for the deaths of hundreds of civilians in Syria and now in Iraq.

    • Why The MSM Is Such A Farce

      hen again one only has to remember the MSM basically cheering on the the preemptive illegal invasion and all the breathless bullshit emanating from “embedded” journalists to see how effing useless they are.

    • Isis threat justifies greater surveillance powers in UK, says Liam Fox
    • John Prescott: I’m proud to have served with you Tony but we DID cause Iraq mess

      The Sunday Mirror columnist and former Deputy Prime Minister says it’s time to learn from the past and leave Iraq and its neighbours to sort out this mess

    • The Iraq Surge ‘Worked’ All Over Again

      Treating “the US troop surge worked” argument as a fact, as Engel is doing, is very dangerous–since it logically suggests that it is only the presence of US troops that can keep Iraq safe. That is a recipe for a never-ending war.

    • Iraq blowback: Isis rise manufactured by insatiable oil addiction
    • Iraq and Your Gas Tank

      When it comes to US foreign policy and warmaking in the Middle East, you’re not supposed to talk about oil. To suggest it plays a serious role in US decision-making is to invite taunting about conspiracy theories.

    • Russia Reignites The Proxy War: Putin Offers “Complete Support” To Iraq Prime Minister Scorned By Obama

      It was the bolded text that was of biggest interest because as we noted the next day, when discussing the next steps for ISIS, we said that “One wonders how long until the mercenary force finds its latest major backer, because for all the western, US-led intervention, both Russia and China are oddly missing from the scene. We expect that to change soon.”

    • Where Is the Accountability on Iraq?

      Can someone explain to me why the media still solicit advice about the crisis in Iraq from Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.)? Or Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.)? How many times does the Beltway hawk caucus get to be wrong before we recognize that maybe, just maybe, its members don’t know what they’re talking about?

    • Capitalism’s Bullets in Latin America: Invisible Empires, State Power and 21st Century Colonialism

      “Soccer, metaphor for war, at times turns into real war,” wrote Uruguayan author Eduardo Galeano. For many people in Brazil, a war has indeed broken out surrounding the current World Cup. Poor communities have been displaced by stadiums and related infrastructure for the event, the high level of security has increased police violence, and the enormous economic costs of the World Cup are seen by many as a blow against the rights of the country’s most impoverished people. As a result of these controversies, the international sports event has been met with wide-spread protests.

    • Assange Urges Ecuador to Counteract Massive U.S. Spying

      The founder of WikiLeaks, Julian Assange, felt that despite being a small nation, Ecuador can pursue the cessation of US mass espionage against its citizens, according to an interview published here today.
      The Australian publisher and journalist considered that Ecuador can pass laws to mandate that companies providing services within the country use audited industrial standard encryption by default.

      In an interview with the El Telegrafo, Assange said the best model for small nations like Ecuador is the Icelandic Modern Media Initiative, which aimed to make Iceland into a competitive jurisdiction among the market of jurisdictions for companies wishing to provide internet services.

  • Transparency Reporting

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

  • Finance

    • The Teaching Class

      Teaching college is no longer a middle-class job, and everyone paying tuition should care.

    • Spain’s new king sworn in amid anti-monarchy rally (PHOTOS, VIDEOS)

      ​Several people have been detained at an anti-monarchy protest near Madrid’s heavily guarded central square following the coronation of Felipe VI as Spain’s new king.

    • BBC and press ignore massive demonstration against austerity in London

      It seems the BBC are capable of tracking down a single Scot in Brazil who cheered a goal against England but fail to notice 50,000 demonstrating on their doorstep.

    • Miami Sues Banking Giant Over Predatory Mortgages

      The city of Miami on Friday filed a lawsuit in a federal court against JPMorgan Chase & Co., accusing the banking giant of a pattern of discriminatory loan practices “since at least 2004″ which sparked foreclosures and violated the U.S. Fair Housing Act.

      “JPMorgan has engaged in a continuous pattern and practice of mortgage discrimination in Miami since at least 2004 by imposing different terms or conditions on a discriminatory and legally prohibited basis,” Bloomberg reports lawyers for Miami as saying in the complaint.

    • Tens of thousands march in London against coalition’s austerity measures

      Tens of thousands of people marched through central London on Saturday afternoon in protest at austerity measures introduced by the coalition government. The demonstrators gathered before the Houses of Parliament, where they were addressed by speakers, including comedians Russell Brand and Mark Steel.

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • The Koching of America — and of PBS

      A few months back the filmmakers Carl Deal and Tia Lessin got some bad news. The PBS funding that they had counted on to complete their documentary on campaign financing was being withdrawn. This setback came not long after PBS took the unusual step of warning David Koch (of right-wing billionaire donors “the Koch Brothers” fame) that he had been negatively portrayed in another of the networks documentaries, and giving them a chance to respond.

    • Fox Covers Up a Benghazi Story

      So why no mention of the suspect’s stated motive now? Fox News has aired more than 2,000 segments on the Benghazi attacks. Like other right-wing media with the Benghazi bug, Fox News claims that the White House deceived the public by not immediately branding the incident an Al-Qaeda-linked terrorist attack, but instead claimed that it was a spontaneous reaction to the notorious internet video. The motive for the deception, goes the theory, was the White House’s desire not to remind voters that Al-Qaeda was still active two months before a US presidential elections (e.g., Special Report, 5/14/13.)

      Indeed, the conspiracy-mongering got so out of control at one point that the Republicans, with Fox News at their backs, attempted to turn a State Department email mentioning that the anti-Muslim Internet video had caused incidents at a number of US embassies into a smoking gun–evidence, they said, that State Department was trying to repeat inaccurate talking points to be used on Sunday morning chat shows (e.g., Kelly File, 5/1/14). They were ultimately unsuccessful, as more level-headed media corrected the record (e.g., Slate, 4/30/14).

    • How Fox News Has A Conversation About Islam
    • Steve Wozniak wants you to support Mayday.US and get money out of politics

      Apple co-founder, nerd legend, and all-round Good Guy Steve Wozniak has recorded an excellent video explaining why he’s supporting Larry Lessig’s Mayday.US super PAC, which is raising $5M to elect lawmakers who’ll promise to vote to abolish super PACs and effect major campaign finance reform.

  • Censorship

  • Privacy

  • Civil Rights

    • No answer yet on how many elected politicians have been monitored by police’s domestic extremism unit

      Two Green Party politicians have criticised police chiefs who recorded their political activities on a secret database that tracks ‘domestic extremists’

    • US demotes Thailand and Qatar for abysmal human trafficking records
    • Sign the petition to provide reparations to the Chicago Police torture survivors
    • Guildford Four’s Gerry Conlon dies of cancer in Belfast, aged 60

      Belfast man who was wrongly jailed for 15 years devoted his life after release to campaigning for justice

    • How the CIA Stole ‘Dr. Zhivago’

      As The Zhivago Affair reveals, Feltrinelli was not the novel’s only publisher: The CIA played a central role in promoting and disseminating Pasternak’s novel. “The CIA, as it happened, loved literature,” Finn and Couvee write, and the agency was involved in the shipment of some one million books behind the Iron Curtain, including Joyce’s Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man and Nabokov’s Pnin. It became an urgent American agenda to place Doctor Zhivago in the hands of Russian readers. At a 1958 exposition in Brussels, attended by many Soviet visitors, the Vatican pavilion gave out free copies of Zhivago. In the words of a CIA memo, “this book has great propaganda value.”

    • Benghazi suspect faces US criminal court
    • Daphne Eviatar: Sending Benghazi suspect to Gitmo would be obstruction of justice
    • Kangaroo courts and guns on the table: The week in quotes

      Activist Margaretta D’Arcy made a strong presentation to an Oireachtas committee on the use of Irish airspace and Shannon Airport by, in particular, the US Military and CIA.

    • Revealed: Police investigate evidence that six CIA torture flights landed in Scotland

      POLICE are investigating evidence that a CIA jet landed in Glasgow after carrying 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed to a secret torture prison in Poland.

      And the Sunday Mail can reveal that elite detectives are also probing five other stopovers in Scotland, which researchers suspect were part of CIA “rendition circuits” to move terror suspects between secret jails and torture sites.

    • Risen’s Petition Denied

      According to sources however, Eric Holder has declared, “As long as I’m attorney general, no reporter will go to jail for doing his job.”

    • UK government urged to prevent US use of Diego Garcia for renditions

      Parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee has called on the UK Government to restrict the use by the US of Diego Garcia, a British overseas territory, for renditions.

    • Miracles, secrecy and Obama

      To make matters worse, agencies can’t deal with the explosion in electronic information. The CIA is believed to generate 1 petabyte of classified records every 18 months, or the equivalent of 20 million four-drawer filing cabinets of documents.

    • Canadian woman who stopped car on highway to save ducklings found guilty of causing two deaths

      25-year-old Emma Czornobaj stopped her car on the left lane of a highway near Montreal in 2010 after spotting a group of stray ducklings on the road. A motorcyclist and his daughter were killed after slamming into her car.

    • ‘Cash cow’ spy cars to be banned

      The “overzealous” use of spy cars by councils to issue parking fines will be reined in as the government seeks a better deal for the High Street.

    • Telling Folk Heroes From Monsters

      Even if hackers like Mr. Swartz are still a problem for us to reconcile in real life, maybe it is in the movies, with their capacity to empathize with the outré, their ability to present difficult, morally prismatic antiheroes, that we can properly come to terms with them. Especially now, in a world so vividly shaped by complex agents of change like Mr. Assange and Edward J. Snowden, we may need movies to help us comprehend our shades of gray.

    • Immigration And Mindless Partisanship – OpEd

      Many news articles have reported record deportations under Obama, while his anti-immigration critics have argued that a sensitivity to novelties in classification expose a president lax on border enforcement. Adjusting for all this, it appears that the truth is somewhere in the middle: Overall, the Obama administration has conducted deportation policies qualitatively similar to the last administration’s. Whether one concludes a slight decline or increase, the more important fact is that there has been no radical shift since he took office, and certainly not one toward liberalization. Obama’s proposal for reform last year was in fact quite reminiscent of Bush’s plan. Although conservatives tended to find Bush too liberal on immigration, a June 2007 poll showed that 45 percent of Republicans favored their president on these policies, down from 61 percent just a few months before.

    • Brazilian police criticised over raid on protest camp

      Several people were injured by rubber bullets and teargas canisters in Tuesday’s dawn attack by police on a tent community occupying a historic wharf known as Cais José Estelita.

    • Police say they have not counted how many politicians they have been monitoring

      It seems as though we may never know how many elected politicians have been monitored by the police’s ‘domestic extremism’ unit.

      And the reason? Police say that they have not counted how many there are.

      In response to a freedom of information request from the Guardian, Scotland Yard said that the national ‘domestic extremism’ unit “has not conducted any research to count how many elected politicians are currently recorded in any way in its files.”

    • Iran’s morality police: patrolling the streets by stealth

      President Rouhani vowed to rein them in, but they are still in force quietly keeping check on Tehran’s dress code

    • Groups Appeal to UN for ‘Humanity’ as Detroit Shuts Off Water to Thousands

      ‘By denying water service to thousands, Detroit is violating the human right to water.’

    • Brutal Repression Of Anti-FIFA & World Cup Protests in Brazil: at least 109 Arrested, countless Wounded

      Clashes in São Paulo ongoing, activists erected barricades and police have begun trying to disperse them with gas bombs. Protestors trashed a high-class car dealership and a bank on their way to the barricades, the cops could not keep up.

    • Spain: Piss Off The New King, Get Arrested For Displaying Anti-Monarchy Flags

      At least 5 people were arrested by the Spanish police for displaying flags for the Republic during the crowning ceremony of an imposed king aimed to reboot the fading support for the monarchy.

      Since 2008, it is legal to carry flags in support of the republic in Spain, but police arrested old people, young people, parents in front of their kids, intimidated and abused dozens for speaking against the king on the streets, or for wearing anti-monarchy signs. The ones who shouted ”¡Viva la República!” (Long live the Republic), during the ceremony, were arrested on the spot, officials said that it was for the crime of “opposing resistance to the authorities“.

    • Report: California Illegally Sterilized Dozens of Female Inmates

      Last year, the Center for Investigative Reporting (CIR) accused California of sterilizing over 140 female inmates between 2006 and 2010 without required state approvals.

      One doctor, James Heinrich, was responsible for the two-thirds of the tubal ligation referrals during that period from the biggest offender, Valley State prison.

      Asked by CIR about his startling record, Heinrich justified the money spent sterilizing inmates by claiming it was minimal “compared to what you save in welfare paying for these unwanted children—as they procreated more.” He has since been barred from future prison work.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality

    • The EFF wants to improve your privacy by making your Wi-Fi public

      Conventional wisdom dictates that to maintain your security and privacy, you should encrypt your Wi-Fi network. But what if the conventional wisdom is wrong? The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) argues that partially opening up your home Wi-Fi network could actually enhance your privacy, and is working on a tool to make it easier to do so.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • TTIP Update XXIX

      Since the text itself is pretty dry, WikiLeaks has asked one of the world’s top experts on these trade agreements, Professor Jane Kelsey of the Faculty of Law, University of Auckland, New Zealand, to provide a commentary. I strongly recommend reading her analysis, since it explains what all those innocuous-sounding phrases really mean. Here is her summary of what the new leak tells us…

    • Copyrights

      • Dotcom’s Disruptive Music Service First to Support FLAC Streaming

        After several years of development, Kim Dotcom’s much-anticipated music streaming platform Baboom is gearing up for its public release. Baboom aims to disrupt the music industry by closing the bridge between artists and fans. This includes a higher revenue share for artists and free music streaming in a lossless format for fans.

      • EU Commission Set to Unveil New Anti-Piracy Action Plans

        The EU Commission will next week announce new strategies for dealing with online piracy and counterfeiting. These non-legislative measures will include an EU action plan aimed at fighting IP infringement, plus a strategy to protect and enforce IP rights in third countries. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the aim is to “follow the money”.

      • Digital Content Online Should Be Free, Children Say

        A new survey of young children and adults has found consensus on what should be charged for content online. In both groups, 49% said that people should be able to download content they want for free, with a quarter of 16-24 year olds stating that file-sharing was the only way they could afford to obtain it.

The USPTO is the Monopolies Industrial Complex and It Should be Put Under Control or Rebooted

Posted in Patents at 11:33 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Eisenhower warns us of the military industrial complex

Summary: Vested interests in the patents industry make the USPTO an inherent enemy of public interests

THE USPTO clearly got out of control. Watch this article and another one titled “Software patents – new USPTO pilot program to expedite examination”. This was reported shortly before the SCOTUS rules against the excess of software patents. The former head of the USPTO was a big proponent of software patents and it’s not surprising; the USPTO just seeks to increase its power by patenting everything under the Sun. After a coup by corporations like IBM (which put their mole there) it seems like there’s no going back to sanity unless the whole institution gets rebooted or de-funded/dismantled. The Obama Administration made things worse because almost no patent application gets rejected anymore. They pretend it’s indicative of greater innovation.

Patent offices lobbying for more power and wider scope of patents is not just a problem in the US, but like most things, it’s far bigger in the US and there is huge trans-Pacific/Atlantic lobbying trying to have every other system assimilated to US law. Watch what’s going on in India, which keeps fighting against crazy patent monopolies from the West. India has fought hard against software patents despite pressure from some Indian patent lawyers who of course wanted these. It was the same in New Zealand, where the lawyers are now whining that they don’t get much business. To quote a new article: “A review of the numbers of local patent filings made in New Zealand and who was making those applications revealed the rather startling statistic that a large proportion of local patent filings were not made through specialist IP firms, instead they appeared to be self filed.”

Wherever we go in the world there is a war waged by parasitic patent lawyers who try to tax innovation while promising to ban competition or tax the competition (they get commissions on it all). In the patent system itself there is a big desire to always patent more and more things (unlike in courts), so there too there is a conflict of interest and we must stop it. Eternal warfare is market stability to arms companies and maximal patenting/litigation is market stability to law firms. We should tackle both problems similarly and mercilessly. It’s not going to be easy.

With Help From Corrupt Legal System, Apple is Patenting the Competition’s Products, Then Copying Them, Then Banning Them

Posted in Apple, Patents, Samsung at 11:05 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz


Summary: Apple continues to misuse patents as a tool of competitive advantage, relying in part on a biased US corporations-run system (USPTO and ITC) or courts (CAFC)

AS WE SHOWED earlier this month, the US patent office has been exceptionally friendly towards Apple, not the Korean giant, Samsung. The USPTO (and by extension ITC) is one of those pseudo-public institutions that are run by US corporations, not impartial actors. Those are are friendly towards Apple have financial reasons to be like that.

It was very recently reported that Apple patents ideas that relate to stuff which already exists from Samsung but not from Apple. Since the patent system checks what’s already filed rather than what exists in the world/market, this type of abuse is allowed. Apple is basically allowed to patent what the rivals have (and have not patented), then copy the rivals and block their products (e.g. ITC embargo on imports). Watch this ITC war that Apple started. It’s failing badly, but it is still unjust. “Apple Inc. and Samsung Electronics Co.,” says this report, “on Friday agreed to drop their appeals of a patent-infringement case at the US International Trade Commission (ITC) that resulted in an import ban on some older model Samsung phones. Samsung has been seeking to overturn the ban, while Apple was trying to revive other patent claims it had lost. The import ban will remain in effect, according to a filing with the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. Last month both companies blamed each other for their inability to reach a global settlement. Appeals of district court cases between Apple and Samsung are still pending.”

The US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit is a corrupt sham. It should cease to have any impact on law and it is highly predicable (barely surprising) that it let Apple make all this mess. As one respectable site put it, Apple’s patent wars may in fact be “a Marketing Strategy”, pretending that Apple invented everything despite its founder’s admission that it copies a lot from other companies. To quote the analysis: “The latest battle in the three-year long Apple-Samsung patent saga concluded few weeks ago. In contrast to previous litigation between the two tech-giants—which revolved on the overall look of the phones—this case focused around autocomplete, tap-from-search and slide-to-unlock software. Despite the technical nature of these innovations, there are a few broad managerial lessons that have emerged from this prominent patent case.”

Further down it says: “The Apple-Samsung patent war illustrates how patent litigation has impacts that go far beyond stopping a specific firm from copying a particular technology. This narrow view overlooks the effect it has on brands, and on other competitors not named in the suits. In considering their own IP strategy and in responding to litigation, managers can benefit from thinking more broadly about patent wars and recognizing their multiple effects.”

Apple is a shameful embargo company that copies others, then tries to ban them. Apple relies on an inherently corrupt and biased legal system in the US. Those who have not yet chosen to boycott Apple should think about what Apple does to innovation and fair competition. Remember that all those devices that Apple fights against are based on Linux.

“We’ve always been shameless about stealing great ideas.”

Steve Jobs

As Expected, SCOTUS Decision on Software Patents Already Distorted by People With Pro-Patents Agenda

Posted in Deception, Patents at 8:22 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Patent lawyers fight to maintain artificial barriers

Border

Summary: Systematic distraction or obfuscation of the SCOTUS ruling, which basically rendered a lot of software patents utterly useless in every court in the United States and abroad/at the border (ITC)

WE SAW THIS after the Bilski case. We saw it many times after that. Lawyers try to shape the truth based on their own preferences. That’s what they do for a living. We must counter them before they successfully change the nature of this whole debate.

Various articles that we see coming from patent lawyers (and patent-centric publications) are an absolute disgrace, but this is precisely what we predicted would happen. Revisionism as such typically becomes necessary when there’s a decision impacting their business. They turn their back on truth and start spinning, or lying by omission.

Remember that lawyers are good liars (or truth twisters), they are not necessarily judges, although judges too have their faults and occasional corruption. Their goal is not justice. They need to just lie on behalf of people (clients), or twist the facts not for the purpose of justice but for winning a case. That’s their occupation by definition and the SCOTUS decision is seen as a threat to some of them.

We have been finding some more articles that we did not see in our fairly large/comprehensive press survey. Here is the EFF speaking about “bad patents” (the EFF prefers not to talk about “software patents” so much anymore, just like the Bezos/Amazon-owned CIAPost which speaks of ‘”bad” patents’). There is also some analysis from eWeek, IP Watch, and pro-Android circles.

The corporate media’s coverage [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12] was mostly OK (sticking to the facts rather than twisting them), but there’s already spin from patent lawyers, such as this article by James M. Singer from Fox Rothschild LLP. Its headline states “Supreme Court Delivers Blow To ‘Abstract’ Software Patents, While Stating That Software Still Can Be Patent-Eligible” (the latter part conveys bias).

Here is another example of distortion, with the headline “Supreme Court blow to software ‘patent trolls’”. It’s a weird type of spin, similar to “US Supreme Court squares up to software patent trolls with stricter rules” (from Microsoft-friendly site). Well, the ruling does not say anything about trolls, it speaks about scope. Here is a headline that says “US Supreme Court deals major blow against software patents and patent trolls”, again introducing a discussion about “trolls” where none really existed. SCOTUS dealt with patent scope, so to twist/shape this into something else is simply inadequate.

Watch how Microsoft booster Richard Waters twists the facts, by going with the deceiving headline “Software patents survive US Supreme Court test”. This lousy journalist is a longtime Microsoft spinner (who told lies) and he has just told readers the very opposite of what happened. Richard Waters makes the Financial Times look no better than Fox ‘news’ (AP and CNN did get it right this time).

Now, watch how a typical lawyers’ firm approaches the subject of software patents or business method patents. A patent lawyer from Stuart Meyer, Partner, IP Group, Fenwick & West LLP pretends there is a lot of uncertainty after the decision, which is a common technique for preserving the status quo (pretending that a ruling changed nothing at all due to lack of clarity). It is very clear what SCOTUS has just done, but prepare for patent lawyers all around the world to storm and press and do some revisionism.

The SCOTUS decision would do more to help than all those so-called ‘reforms’ that achieve nothing serious, except perhaps the claim that something has been done (a distraction).

Another lawyer, Matt Levy , continues to divert attention to patent trolls. To quote his latest analysis: “Yesterday, the Supreme Court released its final patent opinion of the term, Alice v. CLS Bank. This case should help clarify the patent eligibility of software, and improve patent quality, but we’re still going to need patent reform legislation to really fix the problems in the patent system that are exploited by patent trolls.”

Nonsense. As many trolls use software patents, it is scope we should be striving to change. Some very large trolls like Microsoft would not be impeded by a reform that deals with small “trolls”. Patent Progress, the site of Levy, always focuses only on trolls; perhaps his goal is not to get rid of software patents but to merely change the landscape of litigation. Here he is speaking about trolls, including Intellectual Ventures, conveniently failing to mention the company behind it or that company’s record of racketeering with patents. “And earlier this week,” said this one post. “Matt Levy explained why the demand letter bills are insufficient to fix the patent troll problem.”

Matt Levy should be doing more to tackle software patents. The same goes for Steph from this trolls-focused site which asks: “You know what the biggest problem with patent trolls is? Oh sure, it’s that they cost companies buckets of money and stifle innovation by shutting down start ups. Those are bad, of course, but the real tragedy here is that they make people like Chris Hulls call someone a “piece of shit” and then look stupid in the process.”

The focus on trolls is the reason we stopped covering patent issues for nearly a year. Here we have an important decision regarding software patents, but people who claim to be pursuing “patent progress” carry on talking about trolls, as if they simply fail to see the broader issue and the ultimate solution to spurious litigation.

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