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11.14.14

Links 14/11/2014: GNOME 3.14.2, PulseAudio 6.0

Posted in News Roundup at 7:43 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

  • 6 tips for adopting open source

    Open source code drives collaborative innovation from a larger pool of developers at a lower cost, which is why federal agencies are adopting the “open source first” model. In fact Sonny Hashmi, CIO of the General Services Administration, recently announced that implementing open source software is among his top priorities this year.

    So what’s the best way to increase your agency’s adoption of open source software and keep it secure?

  • Databricks Adds Certifications for Spark Big Data Integrators

    Apache Spark, the open source platform for in-memory, cluster-based big data processing, has taken another step toward readiness for prime time with the announcement of a new certification program from Databricks that focuses on Spark systems integrators.

  • GlobalSight shines with open source in the translation community

    Making GlobalSight open source in 2009 was a business decision by Welocalize, as it allowed users and clients the most options to support and create solutions that work best for them. As it turned out, clients liked the decision and Welocalize embraced the open source model as a business strategy. The GlobalSight community has been active since then and is a vibrant, active group of users, developers, and translation professionals. Users like GlobalSight because it is a fully featured TMS system, which is core to supporting localization and translation programs in large enterprises.

  • Adobe appoints former Reg man as open-source chief mobile lead

    Matt Asay has quietly been appointed Adobe’s vice president of mobile for the firm’s digital marketing business, The Reg has learned. He left his post as vice president of community at NoSQL database MongoDB on 31 October.

  • Web Browsers

    • Chrome

      • Google’s Blink WebKit Engine Fork Is Doing Great

        A “State of Blink” presentation was shared during the conference and the short story is that this engine, which is used by Google’s Chrome/Chromium among other open-source web projects, is doing great.

    • Mozilla

  • SaaS/Big Data

    • ownCloud Enables True Universal File Access via Cloud Service

      ownCloud uses its own server-to-server sharing capability to bypass all the Web interfaces that trip up seamless file sharing across silos.

      Anybody who says there’s nothing new under the sun–or clouds–ought to read this story.

      Cloud storage and collaboration service provider ownCloud (yes, with a lower-case “o”) has found a way to sync up files from all over the place–from the cloud, to enterprise silos, to personal connected storage devices, to other disparate places–and make them easily available and sharable using its own cloud (hence, ownCloud) common file access layer.

  • Databases

    • Amazon: DROP DATABASE Oracle; INSERT our new fast cheap MySQL clone

      Amazon fired a volley at Oracle and other relational database vendors on Wednesday, with the launch of a new, cloud-hosted database service that it says can deliver better performance than on-premises installations at a fraction of the cost.

      Amazon Web Services senior VP Andy Jassy unveiled the new service, dubbed Amazon Aurora, during the opening keynote of the annual AWS re:Invent conference in Las Vegas, arguing that traditional database software isn’t serving customers’ needs in a cloud-centric world.

    • Amazon Claims New Aurora DB Engine Screams With Speed

      Looks like the long-popular, open-source MySQL database, which runs inside so many IT systems now that there isn’t a good way to know exactly how many instances are out there, has a viable new competitor.

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

    • Leaving da Camera On: Introduction and Contents

      Which brings us to a very relevant point. The Gnu/Linux and Free Software Foundation people (we mean the real guys, the ‘amateur’ programmers, artists, writers, engineers — many of whom do not get paid for their ‘real work’ (“I’m a programmer, really. Acting in major motion pictures is just my day job”) — not the ‘Official Value-added Linux Distributors’ who package and dispense the product to supplement their substantial offerings of NSA-quality and price-tag corporate ‘offerings’) are totally responsible for Leaving da Camera On — though we’ll accept the blame; happy to take a bullet for GNU/FSF any time. The crude — but vehemently sincere — multi-media shtick we’ll be offering you — Hey all you people out there on Internet Land! Hi Mom! — would have cost thousands of dollars — per machine — had we been forced to knuckle under to MacWindows shake-down-ware. Which is and would have been impossible — in every sense of the term. And way beyond our humble dissents’ budget. A lot or GNU/Linux ‘day-to-day-routine’ processes are deliberately blocked, as anyone who’s been duped by the iPadphonepoddronelauncher PR hustle and ‘copyright law’ strong-arming via their congressional attorneys has experienced; which is why all of Free Media Offerings (FMCs) within these quercks and decs are ‘conceptually correct,’ the ‘production values’ would have been considered cheap and cheesy by Ed Wood.

  • Project Releases

  • Public Services/Government

    • Scholarship Winner Sandeep Aryal Aims to Bring Open Source to Nepal

      As a system administrator for the Government of Nepal in Kathmandu, Sandeep Aryal says it will be a formidable challenge to convince his employer to adopt Linux and open source software. But he believes the training he receives through his Linux Foundation scholarship will help him better make his case, he says.

  • Openness/Sharing

    • How open source is changing our food

      Our planet is currently inhabited by 7 billion people. And we believe open source holds a key to building better hardware, methods, and systems to help us grow, harvest, and share food with each other. Right where we live, and on a greater scale, with our global neighbors. Out of the sharing economy and the labors of love of open source communities have come innovative ideas that we need today and will need into the future.

  • Programming

  • Standards/Consortia

    • Celebrating 10 years of Lohit fonts project

      I am sure in open source it is rare to find people who are not aware of Lohit fonts [1] or not used it over the years. It is default fonts for number of Indian language in Most of the open source distribution including Fedora, Debian. It was used in early version of Android for Indian languages. It is used in Wikipedia as a Web fonts. Recently Unicode started using it for building Tamil code charts.

Leftovers

  • Health/Nutrition

  • Security

  • Defence/Police/Secrecy/Aggression

    • Activists Arrested for Protesting Drone Killings Speak Out

      Ellen Barfield and Marilyn Carlisle talk to the Real News about why they committed civil disobedience opposing drone strikes at the NSA headquarters in Ft. Meade, Maryland

    • World wary as bombs, not humans, pick whom to kill

      On a bright fall day last year off the coast of Southern California, an Air Force B-1 bomber launched an experimental missile that may herald the future of warfare.

      Initially, pilots aboard the plane directed the missile, but halfway to its destination, it severed communication with its operators. Alone, without human oversight, the missile decided which of three ships to attack, dropping to just above the sea surface and striking a 260-foot unmanned freighter.

    • Bombs Away: Weaponized Drones Flying High

      For a while it seemed that the drones project had been restrained following a flood of public criticism last year. Reports from United Nations Special Rapporteurs, and mainstream NGOs like Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International clearly documented violations of International Humanitarian and Human Rights Law by Drone strikes in Pakistan and Yemen, countries the US is not at war with. US attempts to justify the strikes were clearly inadequate but strikes dwindled so the discussion around Drones lost it’s allure. I warned last fall that this is was just a superficial misdirection while all the corporate and pentagon initiatives remained on track [1][2]. Today the drones are back in force and legality seems a forgotten issue.

    • If only America didn’t have those high-tech hammers

      Every time the US goes and pummels another Muslim country — by sending drones to conduct ‘signature strikes’ or using the NSA to eavesdrop — it reinforces the terrorists’ claim that the West has an insatiable desire to dominate the Arab and Islamic world and has no respect for Muslim life

    • Why’s Al Qaeda So Strong? Washington Has (Literally) No idea

      In the years since Bin Laden declared war on the West, we’ve learned how to kill his followers, but not how to defeat his ideology.

    • Secret Cash Pays for U.S. Drone Mistakes

      A Yemeni family was paid $100,000 for the death of relatives in a U.S. drone strike in 2012, according to a remarkable story yesterday from Yahoo News. Faisal bin Ali Jaber, a 56-year-old who works at Yemen’s environmental agency, has been on a mission to find out why his innocent nephew and brother-in-law were killed in a strike that also took out three suspected militants. He made it to Washington D.C. last fall, he told journalist Michael Isikoff, where he met with two White House national security aides. They listened, but said little in response.

    • US Drone Strike, Clashes Kill 40 in Yemen

      None of them have been identified.

    • U.S. sailors attacked in Turkey, have bags placed over heads

      Three U.S. Navy sailors were assaulted and had bags placed over their heads during a stop in Istanbul, Turkey, according to U.S. military officials.

      The incident, captured on video, happened Wednesday when sailors from the USS Ross were attacked by members of the Turkish Youth Union, according to local Turkish press accounts.

      A statement posted on the Turkish Youth Union website said the bags were placed on the sailors’ heads to protest American “imperialism” in the Middle East and other areas.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • Republicans vow EPA fight as Obama touts China climate deal

      Republican congressional leaders on Wednesday wasted no time in criticizing what they called President Barack Obama’s “one-sided” climate deal with China, using the announcement to declare war on the administration’s plan to use executive actions to combat carbon emissions.

  • Finance

    • Welcome to Sweden – the most cash-free society on the planet

      Electronic payment evangelists say largely cash-free economy has cut costs and reduced crime rate

    • .1% of America Now Controls 22% of Wealth: The Wealth Gap Has Killed the Middle Class

      A new working paper by London School of Economics professors Emmanuel Saez and Gabriel Zucman sheds some very unflattering light on the American wealth gap, which has reached levels unseen since the Roaring ‘20s. The wealth gap has been overtaking the income gap as a popular cultural topic since Thomas Piketty’s splashy Capital in the 21st Century, and Saez and Zucman’s work fills in some crucial blanks to flesh out Piketty’s contentions. Saez and Zucman conclude that the top .1% of America now controls 22% of the aggregate wealth – an especially troubling figure when examined in the context of America’s stubbornly conservative political landscape.

    • Obama’s ‘Hot Anti-Wall Street Rhetoric’?

      So the evidence is Obama making a comment on 60 Minutes and apparently blaming Wall Street for the economic collapse. But while financiers would no doubt rather be referred to as “entrepreneur/philanthropists” than as “fat cat bankers”–a phrase that did not become a regular part of Obama’s vocabulary–there is little doubt that Wall Street does in fact deserve a major share of blame for the financial meltdown. It’s peculiar to classify a commonplace observations about the world as “hot rhetoric.”

      And there’s the fact that Obama made a joke about Goldman Sachs’ profitability–at a dinner where presidents make jokes!–right after the company just paid out a massive settlement for the kind of behavior that helped fuel the economic collapse.

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

  • Censorship

    • Britain Poised to Muzzle ‘Extremist’ Speech

      In Britain, if you have extreme views on anything from Western democracy to women’s role in public life, you might soon require a licence from the government before you can speak in public. Seriously.

    • Kuwaiti Cartoonist Battles ISIS Death Threats, U.S. Bigots

      Seven years after the Kuwaiti psychologist and entrepreneur first launched his comic book series based on the 99 attributes of Allah, he’s facing a sudden onslaught of death threats, fatwas and lawsuits. His US distributor, meanwhile, continues to sit on a TV deal, in part because of pressure from conservative bloggers who object to any positive description of Islam.

  • Privacy

    • Twitter given junk credit rating

      Standard & Poor’s issues BB- score, saying social network is growing strongly but spending heavily at the same time

    • Student, 20, speaks of her fury after photos were stolen from her Facebook profile and used to promote a sex website

      A university student was furious when she found her Facebook profile pictures had been stolen and used to advertise a ‘no-strings attached’ casual sex website.

      Three pictures of Grace Marr, an English language student at Aston University, Birmingham, were used alongside a promotion offering ‘hot horny singles in your local area’.

      Embarrassingly, she only found out they were being used when she was contacted by a friend of her mother, who told her he had seen the advert while surfing the Internet last month.

    • 6 Reasons Why You Should Quit Facebook

      Entrepreneurs are often time and money poor, yet engage in a daily habit that diminishes both: Facebook.

      With over 750 million active accounts, an astounding one in nine people in the world log on to Facebook, arguably the most addictive social media site. Studies reveal that Facebook makes us spend more, work less and generally, discourages us. In this, has Facebook become a liability for budding entrepreneurs?

    • Race to revive NSA surveillance curbs before Congress handover

      The major post-Edward Snowden legislation meant to constrain the National Security Agency received a new lease on life Wednesday when the Senate majority leader paved the way for the USA Freedom Act to receive a vote before the congressional session expires.

      Harry Reid, the Nevada Democrat who will cease being majority leader when his party returns to the minority in January, filed a procedural motion that will permit the bill to receive a hearing on the Senate floor, perhaps as early as next week. Its supporters have feared that Senate inaction would quietly kill the only post-9/11 attempt at curtailing mass surveillance.

    • Harry Reid Moves for Senate Vote on NSA Reform

      Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid on Wednesday moved to advance a bill that would usher in sweeping reforms to the government’s most controversial domestic-spying program, more than a year after Edward Snowden’s leaks exposed it publicly.

    • Tech, digital rights groups applaud Senate move on NSA reform

      “The legal reforms in the USA Freedom Act send a clear signal to U.S. citizens and Internet users around the world that Congress is serious about reforming government surveillance practices, and providing the judiciary and the public with tools that allow better oversight over remaining narrowed programs,” CCIA President and CEO Ed Black said by email. “The USA Freedom Act closes key loopholes on bulk call data collection and offers greater transparency, which is essential for citizens in a free democracy.”

    • Ex-NSA technical chief: How 9/11 created the surveillance state

      Former NSA technical director Brian Snow discusses the ethical issues around the use of mass surveillance and tells Sophie Curtis why citizens should be careful what they wish for

    • Plumbing the Depths of NSA’s Spying

      The complexity of the National Security Agency’s spying programs has made some of its ex-technical experts the most dangerous critics since they are among the few who understand the potential totalitarian risks involved, as ex-NSA analyst William Binney showed in an interview with journalist Lars Schall.

    • Google urges US government to extend the US Privacy Act to EU citizens

      The U.S. government should give European citizens whose personal data is sent to U.S. authorities the same privacy protections that American citizens already enjoy in the EU, Google’s top lawyer has said ahead of trans-Atlantic talks.

    • Google urges US to let Europeans sue over information disclosures
    • Who will save Europe’s privacy from the NSA? Oh God … it’s Google
    • Lame duck? Senate to vote on Keystone pipeline, NSA reform

      Republicans are set to take over the Senate next year, but the chamber is gearing up to make the lame duck session eventful: lawmakers will vote on the controversial Keystone XL Pipeline bill next week, as well as another to curb domestic surveillance.

    • The Surveillance State’s Legalism Isn’t About Morals, It’s About Manipulating the Rules

      Margo Schlanger has written a great article forthcoming in the Harvard National Security Journal about intelligence legalism, an ethical framework she sees underlying NSA surveillance. Margo makes the case that NSA and the executive branch haven’t been asking what the right surveillance practices should be, but rather what surveillance practices are allowed to be. She takes the concept of legalism from political theorist Judith Shklar: “the ethical attitude that holds moral conduct to be a matter of rule following, and moral relationships to consist of duties and rights determined by rules.” In the model of legalism that Margo sees the NSA following, any spying that is not legally prohibited is also right and good because ethics is synonymous with following the rules. Her critique of “intelligence legalism” is that the rules are the bare minimum, and merely following the rules doesn’t take civil liberties concerns seriously enough.

    • The Mercenaries

      Ex-NSA hackers and their corporate clients are stretching legal boundaries and shaping the future of cyberwar.

    • Watch out: the US government wants to pass new spying laws behind your back

      Dangerous cybersecurity legislation would allow Google and Facebook to hand over even more of your information to the NSA and FBI

    • Ex-NSA Chief Urges Congress to Step Up Fight Against Cyberattacks [pro-surveillance scare]
    • TAKE ACTION: Hearing Set for Bill to Turn Off NSA Water in Utah

      A bill that would set the stage for turning off the water at the NSA datacenter facility in Bluffdale, Utah will get a public hearing this month, and your action can help move the legislation forward.

      Rep. Marc Roberts introduced the Utah Fourth Amendment Protection Act (HB0161) during the 2014 legislative session. The bill would ban the state and its political subdivisions from providing material support or resources to federal agencies engaged in mass warrantless surveillance programs. This would include the up to 1.7 million gallons of water per day being supplied to the datacenter by the city of Bluffdale.

    • Now the GOP Must Choose: Mass Surveillance or Privacy?

      Before May, Congress has no alternative but to endorse or end NSA spying on the phone calls of virtually every American. What does the new party in charge want?

    • Stalling on Surveillance Reform Could Cost the GOP

      Right now, there is a viable, bipartisan bill called the USA Freedom Act that would limit government spying on Americans and has received support from members of both parties, the tech industry, and the Obama Administration. Yet, there are few remaining legislative days left to allow a vote on the bill so that it can become law. Failure to move the bill in the lame duck session will leave some tough questions for the new Senate to deal with in 2015.

    • Greenwald to Share His NSA Secrets at the U

      Glenn Greenwald, a journalist famous for breaking the story of Edward Snowden’s leak of confidential information from the National Security Agency’s surveillance of American citizens, will be speaking at the U about topics concerning security and privacy.

      Matthew Potolsky, an English professor at the U, is teaching a course on secrecy Spring Semester, and Greenwald was selected to coincide with the class. Potolsky said he was also intrigued at the thought of Greenwald coming to Utah because of the NSA’s new data facility in Bluffdale.

    • Rep. Mike Rogers Is Taking His NSA Propaganda to the Airwaves

      Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Mich.), the outgoing chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, has announced details of his plan to become a talk-radio host.

      Rogers, who didn’t run for re-election, will launch a thrice-daily radio segment on Cumulus media’s national radio network.

    • NSA Requests for Facebook Data Up By 24 Percent

      A new report has been released that requests for information on Facebook from federal spy agencies is up by 24 percent.

    • ‘There is but one way out for you’: Uncensored ‘suicide letter’ sent from FBI to Martin Luther King made public for the first time

      The uncensored contents of a letter sent from the FBI to Martin Luther King in which he is called an “evil, abnormal beast” and apparently encouraged to kill himself have been made public for the first time.

      In what appears to be a heavy-handed attempt to unsettle the civil rights leader, the anonymous letter was written by a deputy of the bureau’s director J Edgar Hoover, posing as a disappointed activist, and sent to King in the weeks before he received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964.

    • Democrats face hefty to-do list in final weeks of Senate majority

      Isis, Ebola and NSA reform all make the list – but most important will be nominees the White House wants approved before Republicans take the Senate

    • Germany and Brazil propose UN resolution re-write to condemn ‘highly intrusive act’ of NSA surveillance

      Germany and Brazil have made alterations to a United Nations draft resolution on the issue of state surveillance, with the two countries calling for protection against government spying on communications and personal data.

    • Germany, Brazil Push the UN to be Tougher on Digital Spying

      Germany and Brazil are pushing the United Nations to be tougher on spying by beefing up an earlier UN resolution raising concerns that mass surveillance, interception of digital communications and personal data collection could harm human rights.

    • How quantum computers will undermine cryptography

      Quantum computing has many benefits, but it could also undermine the cryptographic algorithms that underpin the World Wide Web, according to a former NSA technical director

    • New Report: Patient confidentiality broken 6 times a day

      The report shows that between 2011 to 2014, there have been at least 7,255 breaches. This is the equivalent to 6 breaches every day. Examples of the data breaches include:

    • New OASIS Standard to Build Biometric Security Wonderwall

      Non-profit IT consortium OASIS is developing a server-based biometric authentication standard. Industry professionals, government officials, and academics have been invited to help develop the standard as part of the Identity-Based Attestation and Open Exchange Protocol Specification – or IBOPS – Technical Committee.

    • The U.S. must respect the rights of all users

      In the nearly 18 months since the first Snowden revelations, policymakers around the world have spent countless hours discussing the proper scope and reach of surveillance authorities. The United States has been at the center of these discussions, and for good cause. Many of the revelations have focused on U.S. activities and the U.S. maintains the largest budget for surveillance in the world many times over. However, frighteningly little has been said in these discussions about surveillance of people outside of America.

    • PRISM scandal threatens EU-US ‘Safe Harbour’ agreement

      The European Court of Justice (ECJ) could be tempted to invalidate “Safe Harbour” agreements on data retention between the United States and the European Union because of the PRISM spying scandal, writes Yann Padova.

    • Human Rights Watch calls on US to recognize all privacy rights

      The United States should recognize the right to privacy of other countries and stop its practice of spying on the communications of friendly nations, Human Rights Watch’s general counsel Dinah Pokempner said Thursday.

    • Want your privacy back? First, curb your own enthusiasm for snooping

      If we film everyone, all the time, that’s not merely a threat to trust in our society – it’s the end of it

    • New head of Britain’s GCHQ demands Internet companies act as state informers

      Within hours of Robert Hannigan becoming the new director of Britain’s Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) spy centre last week, he demanded it be allotted even more draconian powers.

    • The mass surveillance scandal fallout

      Over the last year the extent of NSA and GCHQ monitoring of communications has come under increasing scrutiny and informed privacy policy in Europe.

    • US concerns about online privacy present opportunity, experts say

      A new survey saying an overwhelming majority of U.S. adults believe they have lost control over how private companies collect their personal information may be an opportunity in disguise for Web-based companies, some privacy experts said.

    • Art in a Time of Surveillance

      You can’t throw a rock these days without hitting a surveillance art project, and the remarkable thing is that so much of it is so good. Some of the Snowden era’s sharpest interrogations of collect-it-all tracking by corporations and the government are to be found in galleries and other art spaces. They are the opposite of the acronym-laden news stories we read: NSA, FISA, PGP, PRISM, ACLU, EFF, SIGINT, GCHQ, TOR, FOIA, HTTPS, are you still awake? They are playful, invasive and eerie, and best of all they are graphically visual. With a transgressive edge that journalism struggles to match, they creatively challenge what it means to be human in a time of data.

    • Stephen Walt: Without high-tech gadgetry, Washington might have to do real spying, and thinking

      If we didn’t have all these expensive high-tech capabilities, we might spend a lot more time thinking about how to discredit and delegitimize the terrorists’ message

      [...]

      To be clear: I’m not suggesting we dismantle the NSA, fire all our cryptographers, and revert to Cordell Hull’s quaint belief that “gentlemen [or ladies] do not read each other’s mail.” But until we see more convincing evidence that the surveillance of the sort Hannigan was defending has really and truly kept a significant number of people safer from foreign dangers, I’m going to wonder if we aren’t overemphasizing these activities because they are relatively easy for us, and because they have a powerful but hard-to-monitor constituency in Washington and London. In short, we’re just doing what comes naturally, instead of doing what might be more effective.

    • Peak indifference-to-surveillance

      The Pew Internet Project has updated its must-read 2013 work on privacy perception in the post-Snowden era with a survey of American attitudes to privacy and surveillance that shows that the number of Americans who worry about privacy is steeply rising.

    • How much do we care about our online privacy?

      A year and a half after Snowden’s initial NSA revelations, internet privacy has become one of the most widely discussed topics in media and technology. But there is little evidence that snooping habits have diminished. Even apps that emerged to ensure consumer anonymity, such as Snapchat and Whisper, have been under investigation for breeching their own privacy specs. But how much has changed in the mindset of consumers, and are we genuinely concerned about privacy?

    • Is online privacy a lost cause?

      Nine in 10 Americans believe they have no control over their personal information, how it is collected and how it is used by companies, according to a new Pew Research Center survey.

    • Pew Study: Americans Fear They’ve Lost Control of Personal Data

      A Pew Research study examined how Americans view the privacy of their personal information in the wake of Edward Snowden’s revelations about online government snooping.

    • Senate poised to vote on USA Freedom Act as early as next week

      The Senate is poised to vote as early as next week on the USA Freedom Act, legislation that would end the National Security Agency’s bulk collection of records about Americans’ phone calls.

    • Immigration hinders anti-terror efforts – UK police chief

      The influx of immigrants to the UK, with different languages and their own communities, are an obstacle for British police combating terrorism, the country’s most senior police chief said.

      Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe, commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, said officers working in local communities aiming to combat radicalization often found it “more difficult to integrate with new populations.”

      This especially applies to multicultural London, where a disproportionately high number of migrants from overseas arrive each year.

    • How Obama Endangered Us All With Stuxnet

      A few months after President Obama took office in 2009, he announced that securing the nation’s critical infrastructure — its power generators, its dams, its airports, and its trading floors — was a top priority for his administration. Intruders had already probed the electrical grid, and Obama made it clear the status quo around unsecured systems was unacceptable. A year later, however, a sophisticated digital weapon was discovered on computers in Iran that was designed to attack a uranium enrichment plant near the town of Natanz. The virus, dubbed Stuxnet, would eventually be identified by journalists and security experts as a U.S.-engineered attack.

    • Germany plans early-warning defence against cyber attacks

      Germany is to develop a new cyber security “early-warning” system to detect impending foreign-based internet attacks before they are launched.

      The move reflects growing concern about possible cyber attacks being launched on German targets from a range of potential sources, including Islamist extremists, crime gangs, and state-backed hackers in Russia and China.

    • German spies want millions of Euros to buy zero-day code holes

      Germany’s spooks have come under fire for reportedly seeking funds to find bugs – not to fix them, but to hoard them.

      According to The Süddeutsche Zeitung, the country’s BND – its federal intelligence service – wants €300 million in funding for what it calls the Strategic Technical Initiative. The Local says €4.5 million of that will be spent seeking bugs in SSL and HTTPS.

  • Civil Rights

    • Mark Udall to consider all options to reveal CIA torture report

      U.S. Sen. Mark Udall has seven weeks left in office, but the Colorado Democrat isn’t prepared to go quietly — especially when it comes to the twin issues of CIA torture and government snooping.

      In his first interview since Election Day, Udall told The Denver Post that he would “keep all options on the table,” including a rarely-used right given to federal lawmakers, to publicize a secret report about the harsh interrogation techniques used by CIA agents in the aftermath of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

      He also vowed to make one final push to curb the National Security Agency and its power to gather information on ordinary Americans.

    • The U.S. Tells the World It’s Officially Done With Torture—But Is It Too Little Too Late?

      The U.S. made its most formal admission of torture yet to a United Nations panel in Geneva, telling the international community that “we crossed the line.”

    • US government sees off legal challenge over Guantánamo force-feeding

      The Obama administration has prevailed in the first court challenge to its controversial force-feedings of detainees at Guantánamo Bay, even as the judge ruling in the government’s favor criticized its lack of “common sense and compassion”.

      Gladys Kessler, a federal judge in Washington DC, denied Abu Wa’el Dhiab’s request to significantly change the manner in which the US military transfers, restrains and forcibly feeds detainees on hunger strike to protest their confinement. Kessler’s ruling, siding with the government in nearly every particular, is the denouement of a courtroom drama that in May saw a civilian judge ordering the military to briefly halt Dhiab’s forced feeding.

    • Report: NOLA PD failed to investigate hundreds of sex crimes

      In a shocking, enraging report released Wednesday by the New Orleans Office of Inspector General, the city’s special victims unit appears to have failed to investigate 1,111 sexual abuse reports over a three-year period – including those involving young children.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • Columbia Pictures Wants Anti-Piracy Policies Kept Secret, Indefinitely

        Columbia Pictures has asked a Florida federal court to keep its anti-piracy policies secret forever. The records in question are part of the now closed case between Hotfile and the MPAA. Previously, U.S. District Judge Kathleen Williams ruled that the information should be unsealed in the public’s interest.

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    Links for the day



  9. Microsoft Staff Repeatedly Refuses to Tell How Many People Use WSL, Defends Patent Extortion and Blackmail of Linux Instead

    The people who develop WSL (mostly Microsoft employees) get easily irritated when asked how many people actually use this thing; but more interestingly, however, they reveal their disdain for GNU/Linux and support for Microsoft blackmail (for 'Linux patent tax')



  10. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, December 04, 2019

    IRC logs for Wednesday, December 04, 2019



  11. Links 4/12/2019: Tails 4.1, UCS 4.4-3 and Proxmox VE 6.1

    Links for the day



  12. Google Tightens Its Noose

    Now it’s official! Google is just a bunch of shareholders looking to appease the Pentagon at all costs



  13. Europeans Still Need to Save the European Patent Office From Those Who Attack Its Patent Quality

    Patent quality is of utmost interest; without it, as we're seeing at the EPO and have already seen at the USPTO for a number of years, legal disputes will arise where neither side wins (only the lawyers win) and small, impoverished inventors or businesses will be forced to settle outside the courts over baseless allegations, often made by parasitic patent trolls (possessing low-quality patents they don't want scrutinised by courts)



  14. We Never Accepted and Will Never Accept Corporate Money

    Corporate money is a unique problem because of its magnitude and the fact that it's impersonal; shareholders can only ever accept its supposed justifications if they're receiving something in return (of proportional worth to the payment/transaction)



  15. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, December 03, 2019

    IRC logs for Tuesday, December 03, 2019



  16. Links 3/12/2019: elementary OS 5.1 Hera, Plasma 5.17.4, Firefox 71

    Links for the day



  17. Laundering the Reputation of Criminals: That's an Actual Job

    An important reminder that the manufactured, paid-for (media is being bribed) image of Bill Gates is the product of the PR industry he enlisted to distract from his endless crimes



  18. 'Priceless' Tickets to the EPO's Back End and Team UPC

    CIPA's and the EPO's event (later this week) is more of the same; the EPO exists not to serve European businesses but a bunch of law firms and their biggest clients (which usually aren't even European)



  19. IRC Proceedings: Monday, December 02, 2019

    IRC logs for Monday, December 02, 2019



  20. New EPO Leak Shows That the Rumours and Jokes Are Partly True and We Know Who 'Runs the Show'

    Europe’s second-largest institution is so profoundly dysfunctional, a reprehensible kakistocracy of tribalism, money-grabbing career-climbing autocrats and possibly major fraud; today’s leak looks at what motivated and enabled the formation and latest incarnation of “Team Campinos”



  21. Links 2/12/2019: Linux Mint 19.3 Beta, DPL Sam Hartman Talks About SystemD

    Links for the day



  22. What Former Debian Project Leader (Second to the Late Ian Murdock) Thinks About SystemD in Debian GNU/Linux

    Now that Debian is debating and voting on diversity in the technical sense the thoughts of Bruce Perens merit broader audience/reach



  23. Free/Libre Software Will Eventually Become the Norm, 'Open Source' is Just Proprietary Software Trying to 'Buy Time'

    More people are starting to ask questions about Free software while “Open Source” languishes (people can see it’s just a mask for proprietary software); it was a two-decade delaying tactic that’s wearing off (people see GitHub and the OSI/Linux Foundation for what they really are)



  24. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, December 01, 2019

    IRC logs for Sunday, December 01, 2019



  25. Richard Stallman is Active and Doing Well

    The rumour mill may still be humming along; but against all odds — as Chief GNUisance of the GNU Project — Stallman keeps fighting the good fight (in the face of growing resistance)



  26. Banning Former Microsoft Employees Who Complain About Microsoft Lies, Abuses and Crimes

    The official account of Windows Insider is banning people whom it never even spoke to; this seems like a way of 'punishing' people who are not 'true believers' in Microsoft



  27. Wikileaks: Thierry Breton May Have Misused Regulatory/Government Positions to Attack His Competition (in the Market)

    Thierry 'revolving doors' Breton as seen by the United States government



  28. 13 Years of UPC Promises

    The anatomy of UPC 'fake news' or lobbying tactics along the lines of self-fulfilling prophecies and false predictions



  29. Is Water Wet?

    The criteria for patent eligibility reduced only to this question: will allowing these patents increase ‘production’ (number of patent grants)?



  30. The EPO's President Admits He's Illegally Granting Software Patents (CII, 4IR, IoT, AI and Blockchain Mean Software Patents at the EPO)

    The EPO's chief liar is openly and proudly promoting software patents using buzzwords and hype waves (and mysterious acronyms that are rather meaningless but spread by the media in exchange for money received from the EPO)


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