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10.27.19

Links 27/10/2019: GhostBSD 19.10, IPFire 2.23, Qt 3D in Qt 6

Posted in News Roundup at 12:58 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Audiocasts/Shows

    • Kernel Space

      • Linux 5.4 Officially Deprecates Xen 32-bit PV Guest Support

        This deprecation possibility has been talked about for months, so it shouldn’t exactly come as a surprise. If still running 32-bit, the HVM/PVH modes will continue to be supported for the foreseeable future. If still running x86_32 as the host system as opposed to just 32-bit VMs, especially with the likes of x86 32-bit not being fully mitigated for the speculative execution vulnerabilities (e.g. Meltdown) and the power inefficiencies and overall sluggishness of older 32-bit x86 processors, if still running them it may be time to consider upgrading especially for virtualization use.

    • Applications

      • Top 15 Best GPS Tools For Linux To Make Your Navigation Perfect

        GPS is a device that has taken over many essential places. Military equipment, players’ positioning, vehicle tracking, pet tracking, tracking criminals, cell phone utilities, and many more. To intensify the efficiencies of these devices, we need software that can edit, change, or upgrade the device utility. Hence, we are going to talk about some of the best GPS tools for the Linux platform that can feed all the requirements which GPS devices may require to perform all its task wherever it is deployed.

      • remctl 3.16

        remctl is a simple RPC mechanism (generally based on GSS-API) with rich ACLs and native support in multiple languages.

        The primary change in this release is support for Python 3. This has only been tested with Python 2.7 and Python 3.7, but should work with any version of Python 3 later than Python 3.1. This release also cleans up some obsolete syntax in the Python code and deprecates passing in a command as anything other than an iterable of str or bytes.

      • FFmpeg Can Now Make Use Of VDPAU VP9 Video Decoding

        For those looking to make use of VP9 hardware accelerated video decoding with FFmpeg, that support has landed in its latest Git code.

        Back with the VDPAU 1.3 library release this summer the interface was added for supporting VP9 video decoding with the NVIDIA-developed Video Decode and Presentation API for Unix (VDPAU). Now with the newest FFmpeg Git code they support making use of it.

    • Instructionals/Technical

    • Games

      • Devour all humans in the gruesome preview of CARRION

        CARRION makes it so good to be bad and if the new demo is anything to go by, the full game is certainly going to be entertaining. Currently in development by Phobia Game Studio, according to the publisher Devolver Digital said on Twitter it’s time limited and likely to vanish after November 2nd so play it while you can.

        [...]

        It doesn’t currently have a Linux icon, however it does have Linux system requirements and downloads the Linux demo fine.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • KItinerary Custom Extractor Improvements

          It’s been a year since I last wrote about KItinerary custom extractor development, and things have changed a bit since then. While I have been mentioned smaller improvements such as new API available for custom extractors in the regular summary posts, there’s a recent change that deserves a bit more detail.

        • This week in KDE: Goodbye Noble Cashew

          This work was mostly done by Marco Martin, with assistance from Björn Feber, and ideas from many others in the KDE VDG. The remaining rough edges will be polished before the release of Plasma 5.18 (which is an LTS release, let us not forget). Overall I find it to be a huge improvement!

        • KDE Plasma 5.17.1 To Fix Wallpaper Slideshow From Crashing Your Lock Screen

          It was another busy month in KDE space as we approach the end of October.

          KDE developer Nate Graham continues with his Sunday ritual of recapping the prominent KDE developments over the past week. His newest blog post details some of the changes hitting KDE in the pat few days:

          - Plasma now has an “edit mode” accessible via the context menu for the desktop and panel, which allows for editing widgets and panels. This should significantly clean things up and improve the workflow for tweaking the Plasma desktop.

        • What about Qt 3D in Qt 6?

          In the previous article we described the changes to Qt 3D that are already in recent Qt 5 versions or in upcoming ones. This article will explain the work that is going on towards the major changes for Qt 3D in Qt 6.

          There are many things we would like to improve in Qt 3D for Qt 6 but here I will focus on a couple of the big ones: caching renderer work and modern graphics APIs like Vulkan, Metal and DirectX 12.

        • The Qt 3D Story With Vulkan Should Be Quite Compelling For Qt 6.0

          With the soon to be released Qt 5.14 is the start of their new high-level 3D API that itself is graphics API independent for being able to target the likes of Apple Metal and Vulkan as well as Direct3D and still falling back to OpenGL. The start of the graphics API independent scenegraph renderer is turning out well for Qt 5.14 but there will be more to come in the spring with Qt 5.15 while at the end of next year with Qt 6.0 should be a much more compelling story.

          The work going into Qt Quick 3D and all of the new graphics API independent work for this leading cross-platform toolkit is very exciting. As well, Qt 3D (non Qt Quick 3D) will continue to be advanced too for those wanting more control over the 3D programming process.

    • Distributions

      • Screenshots/Screencasts

        • Enso OS 0.3.1 – Using Xfce Desktop 4.12 and Based on Ubuntu 18.04 LTS

          Enso OS 0.3.1 is the latest release of Enso OS, This release based on Ubuntu 18.04 LTS features Xfce 4.12 as default desktop environment combined with Gala, a Mutter-based window/compositing manager designed for use in Elementary OS.

          The most notable changes are within the application management, a fork of the Elementary project’s AppCenter. Dubbed “AppHive” in Enso OS, it has native Snap support. The category selector (a list view on the left-hand side) displays nice colors, and there is an added Games category.

          The greeting application will now autofocus into the password input text box on load, the default avatar has been updated to be more generic and the guest user and additional users’ selection have been disabled by default to make the screen look less busy and the clock will position itself better on smaller screen sizes.

      • Debian Family

        • Dirk Eddelbuettel: littler 0.3.9: More nice new features

          The tenth release of littler as a CRAN package is now available, following in the thirteen-ish year history as a package started by Jeff in 2006, and joined by me a few weeks later.

          littler is the first command-line interface for R as it predates Rscript. It allows for piping as well for shebang scripting via #!, uses command-line arguments more consistently and still starts faster. It also always loaded the methods package which Rscript only started to do more recently.

          littler lives on Linux and Unix, has its difficulties on macOS due to yet-another-braindeadedness there (who ever thought case-insensitive filesystems as a default where a good idea?) and simply does not exist on Windows (yet – the build system could be extended – see RInside for an existence proof, and volunteers are welcome!). See the FAQ vignette on how to add it to your PATH.

        • Romain Perier: Announcing official IRC channel for Raspberry PI in Debian

          Debian for Raspberry Pi exists since few months on IRC, but nothing were done for creating an official channel (see https://wiki.debian.org/IRC) nor communication for announcing this channel on planet. The creation of #debian-raspberrypi, the official Debian channel for topics related to the Raspberry Pi boards in Debian, was done two weeks ago, so this is the right moment to announce it officially !

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Ubuntu Yaru Theme in 11 Colors

          The default Ubuntu Yaru theme, is the default desktop theme for Ubuntu 19.10 and most probably in upcoming releases. Yaru theme is a GNOME shell theme based on Adwaita theme supports both GTK2 and GTK3. It consists of a light and dark version at the moment.

          Yaru’s default icon theme derived from Suru icon themes. However, now you can enjoy multi color Yaru theme from this package – called Yaru-Colors.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Linux Foundation

        • Linux Foundation’s Open Mainframe Project, John Mertic

          Open Mainframe Project is supporting open source projects that are developing shared tool sets and resources. Zowe, as just one example, is a software framework that provides solutions that allow development and operations teams to securely manage, control, script and develop on the mainframe like any other cloud platform. Zowe is the first open source project based on z/OS.

          Fundamentally, we want to include a new generation of developers in mainframe technology. The path to that includes leveraging open source technologies, the power of community, and actively reaching out with mentorships and other programs increase skills and awareness. The Open Mainframe Project mentorship program helps students become contributors to open source on mainframe, as well as develop the skills for a long career in technology.

          Our vision is to make sure that open source on the mainframe becomes the standard for enterprise class systems and applications. This is a tall order, and we believe building a community that supports these efforts is a critical component.

      • BSD

        • GhostBSD 19.10 Now Available

          I am happy to announce the availability of GhostBSD 19.10 with some improvement to the live ISO and UEFI multiboot fix and improvement.

        • GhostBSD 19.10 Released With Installation / UEFI Improvements

          Just in time for Halloween there is a new release of GhostBSD, the operating system focused on providing a good BSD desktop experience built off FreeBSD and the MATE desktop environment.

          With the previous release being GhostBSD 19.09 from September, this weekend’s GhostBSD 19.10 release isn’t all that big. GhostBSD 19.10 brings improvements to UEFI multi-boot installations, ISO boot setup changes, and bug fixes.

      • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

        • My participation in the FSFE 2019 GA meeting in Essen

          Thankful to be among the guests that the FSFE GA invited to join their meeting, I went on 11 October 2019 to the Linuxhotel “Villa Vogelsang” in Essen.

          Unfortunately it was not possible to buy a separate ticket for the S-bahn on the website of Deutsche Bahn, so I stood in line at their service desk at Oberhausen railway station to buy a paper ticket. The app they provide for this is only published for use on proprietary software phones.

          The meetings were held in a comfortable noise-free conference room, with lots of daylight coming in, slightly filtered by the surrounded green. GA members and guests were sitting next to each other, tables placed in a square.

          Before the GA there was a preperation session where members could ask questions and clarifications so that the GA itself would run smoothly. Other elements of the meeting included reports by the council and workgroup discussions about topics ranging form security to sustainability and business models.

        • Sylvain Beucler: More GNU Planet feeds from Savannah

          GNU Planet now automatically fetches news feeds from ‘www.gnu.org portions’ and ‘www.gnu.org translation teams’ Savannah projects.

        • GNU Health HMIS 3.6 Release Candidate 2 ready for test

          GNU Health 3.6RC2 is out !

      • Programming/Development

        • MX records…

          Now I decided to start shifting away from gmail. And I’ve been a gmail user since uni’. That is 15+ years, probably closer to 20.

          I’ve also been a fond user of the send-as-another-email setup, basically living of mail forwards from various domains and using gmail as the all mighty source and destination for all mails (which enables great confusion when you pick the wrong identity). Well – no more of this (once my alternative setup is in place).

          I’ve chosen to use fripost‘s services. The allow all that I want – custom domains, aliases, and so on, while doing this in a privacy based setup. The organization is an association rather than a normal company. This means that most of the work is done on voluntary basis. But, man, they are a helpful, friendly and skilled bunch. Right now we’re discussing SPF and DKIM setup, while I’m uncomfortably am fumbling around with DNS records. It will be great once I’m done.

        • What it’s like to be on the Python steering council [Ed: Microsoft has infiltrated Python]

          So in total I would guess I spend about 7 – 8 hours/week on steering council + Python dev stuff, another 4 -8 hours for everything else Python-related that I do, e.g. my participation in the packaging side of things. (Massive thanks to Microsoft for giving me work time to do this stuff.)

  • Leftovers

    • Neil Young’s Archive Has 25,000 Subscribers, Each Paying $1.99 a Month

      In a recent interview to promote his latest book, To Feel the Music: A Songwriter’s Mission to Save High-Quality Audio, Young discussed the digital subscription service he’s offering his fans.

    • The Pagan Mechanic Rides Again: Neil Young’s Adventures on the Hi-Res Frontier

      Consider: A month before To Feel the Music’s September publication, Apple announced it was expanding its high-resolution music offering. (As some have pointed out, though, “Apple Digital Masters” AAC files are not the same as actual hi-res, defined as anything better than a CD’s quality of 44.1-kHz/16-bit audio.) And, a week after the book hit stores, Amazon announced its own impending entrance into the high-resolution streaming market, likewise with its own definition of the term. With the falling costs of storage and bandwidth, a widespread shift to high-resolution is perhaps inevitable, even if few besides Neil Young seem to be advocating for it (and Spotify continues to dismiss it). Young doesn’t want high-quality audio to be a luxury, but the default, at no extra cost. Amazon’s announcement took Young’s dream one large step closer to reality.

    • Science

    • Education

      • Scientists Can’t Agree About Kids and Screen Time

        These aren’t the only two contradictory studies on the subject, though. Researchers have published more than a hundred deep dives into the impact of screen time on kids’ mental and social health, and yet they’re still seemingly no closer to reaching a definitive conclusion.

        So, what’s a concerned parent to do about their kid’s screen time then? According to Alexis Hiniker, an assistant professor of human computer interaction at the University of Washington, that depends on their kid.

      • Screen time is good for you—maybe

        Twenge conceded that her statistical methods were up for debate, but she stood by her overall conclusion that screen time was unhealthy for children. The data “do not show benefits for moderate use,” she said. “Instead, the best outcomes appear at light use for teens. For younger children, the best outcomes are at no use or very light use.”

        Coming to a consensus view is going to be difficult. That’s at least in part because childhood development is complex and influenced by all sorts of interwoven factors. It would be very difficult to control for all those variables in studying the effects of time spent in front of screens—which can host all manner of content. It’s perhaps no surprise, then, that research on the topic has proved mostly inconclusive, with each new study adding its own confusing twist.

    • Security (Confidentiality/Integrity/Availabilitiy)

      • another reason NOT to use wireless keyboards

        „In the popular series of wireless keyboards Fujitsu LX390 found two dangerous vulnerabilities.

        According to researchers from the company SySS, exploitation of vulnerabilities allows nearby attackers to „spy“ passwords entered on the keyboard, or even to seize control of the system.

      • IPFire 2.23 – Core Update 137 is available for testing

        A little bit behind schedule, we are happy to announce the upcoming release of IPFire 2.23 – Core Update 137. It comes with an updated kernel, a reworked Quality of Service and various bug and security fixes.

      • KeepassXC 2.5.0 Adds ‘Export to HTML’ & 1Password OpVault Support

        KeePassXC, KeePass cross-platform community edition, released version 2.5.0 today with a large number of new features and improvements.

      • company it takedown by ransomeware by 0-day in the Bonjour utility for iTunes – followup to emotet and trickbot

        According to the organization, the problems began on October 13. Although the production lines themselves were not affected, workflows were disrupted due to failures in order service systems. It took employees three days to recover the email. Access to delivery systems of production appeared only to October 21.

        Experts linked the incident to the cryptographer BitPaymer, which was marked by attacks on the district administration in Alaska, the company Arizona Beverages, French TV channel M6. Earlier this month, researchers reported that the malware infiltrates corporate infrastructure through 0-day in the Bonjour utility for iTunes.

        As told to journalists a leading analyst of FoxIT Maarten van Dantzig (Maarten van Dantzig), after the attack on Pilz on VirusTotal found distribution BitPaymer with the same ransom demand, which received employees of the industrial giant. The researcher pointed out that the current incident fits into the pattern of behavior of the cryptographer — his operators prefer massive campaigns to hunt for single targets. The attackers demand large sums of money from such victims — up to a million dollars.

      • ignoring security problems is ALWAYS a „good“ idea – Japanese Robot Hotel

        The Network hosts A POC-code vulnerability, the operation of which allows attackers to remotely monitor visitors through cameras, according to the Tokyo Reporter.

    • Defence/Aggression

      • Trident Is the Crime

        On October 24, following a three-day trial in Brunswick, GA, seven Catholic Workers who acted to disarm a nuclear submarine base were convicted on three felony counts and one misdemeanor. The defendants face 20 years in prison, yet they emerged from their trial seeming quite ready for next steps in their ongoing witness.

      • Vladimir Putin flaunts Russia’s increasing influence in Africa

        For all the pageantry on show in Sochi, Russia remains a bit player in Africa. It is influential among beleaguered leaders with few options. But as more and more countries scramble to engage with the continent, its leaders see Russia as one of many suitors. Mr Putin may want Africans to think of Russia as a great power. But a summit does not make it so.

      • Has the War in Syria Now Killed Off All Accountability for War Crimes?

        Syria is part of a broader story we’re seeing around the world. The number of aid workers killed, injured, or kidnapped is up 60 percent since 2010 to a total of 405 humanitarians last year. The Freedom in the World report highlights eleven countries where there have been ethnic cleansing incidents this year compared to just three in 2005. More people are being displaced per person killed in combat—from a historical ratio of 5 to 1 compared to the 25 to 1 rate in Syria—which could be a sign that governments like Turkey realize that subduing a hostile population is much easier what a large percentage of that population has already fled.

        The U.S. and Europe are not the primary culprits in this age of impunity, but we should be clear about their complicity. By de-prioritizing human rights in their rhetoric and declining to enforce international humanitarian law, Western powers have inadvertently sent the signal to authoritarian leaders from Syria to China to Saudi Arabia to Russia that the only law of war that matters is that might makes right.

      • Republicans storm secure room, delay in questioning of top defense official on Ukraine aid

        Rep. Gerry Connolly, D-Va., said Republicans “stormed” into the room with their cell phones — which are not allowed to be in the space that is considered to be the most secure in the Capitol. Some, including Rep. Louie Gohmert of Texas, were shouting.

        “The SCIF is used by Congress for lots of classified, highly classified purposes. To compromise that to make a point is deeply troubling,” Connolly said. “Failing all else, like the merits of the case, trying to defend the president effectively, they have now decided on physical disruption as their fallback.”

    • Environment

      • Nigeria, Russia sign new agreement

        Nigeria and Russia, on Thursday in Sochi, Russia, signed an important Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), which will enable both countries’ oil giants, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and Russia’s Lukeoil to elevate commercial relationship to a government-to-government backed partnership.

        Malam Garba Shehu, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, confirmed this development in a statement in Abuja.

      • A Hard-Fighting Indonesian Lawyer’s Death Has Colleagues Asking Questions

        The environmental lawyer from North Sumatra battled palm oil plantations, sand miners and a company building a dam that threatens a newly discovered species of orangutan.

        It was not unusual for the lawyer, Golfrid Siregar, to receive warnings and death threats, especially after he tried to halt the $1.7 billion, China-funded hydropower dam on the remote Batang Toru river. He contended that a signature on a key environmental document had been forged.

        So when three strangers brought Mr. Siregar to an emergency room three weeks ago, unconscious with a severe head injury, his friends and family had trouble accepting the police’s conclusion that he had crashed his motorcycle into a curb.

      • Energy

        • Fire threat raises specter of more blackouts for California
        • Letters: Northern Michiganians oppose Line 5 tunnel

          Northern Michigan supports clean water, not a 60 year old pipeline

          In the article “Opinion: Northern Michigan wants the Great Lakes tunnel” (Oct. 23), Grand Traverse County Commissioner Rob Hentschel fails to mention that when the commissioners met to discuss Line 5 they were met by people lined up all along government center asking them not to support Enbridge. In the Council meeting, there were 57 speakers opposing the resolution to support Line 5 and 4 in favor.

        • Gas Station Converts To Electric Charging Station And Speeds Ahead Of Curve

          Doley is willing to wait. He’s owned the independent station and repair shop since 1997. After 20 years of bad contracts, changeable oil prices and convenience store break-ins, Doley says he decided to shut off the gas pumps. He took out a personal loan out to remove the station’s underground storage tanks. The plan was to just keep the repair shop open.

          Then, Doley got a call from the city: would he want to transform the station into a fully outfitted charging center? The offer came with a $786,000 grant to pay for the conversion — a combination of state funding, and money from the Baltimore-based Electric Vehicle Institute.

      • Wildlife/Nature

        • Migrating eagles racked up a huge cellular bill

          Migrating eagles with tracking beacons that send texts reportedly accrued roaming charges so high that scientists had to take out a loan to pay for them, as well as attempt to raise money from a crowdfunding campaign — because some of the birds made unexpected detours (via BBC).

          One eagle, Min, was apparently so far off course that its transmitter sent enough texts to eat up the entire tracking budget, according to the BBC. Min was expected to fly to Kazakhstan, where it would have sent a bunch of coordinates over SMS that it collected while out of range of a network. Those texts would have cost of approximately 30 cents each. However, Min apparently flew straight to Iran and the texts were sent from there, where they cost approximately 77 cents each. Come on, Min!

        • California Wildfires: New Evacuations Ordered, 2.3 Million Face Days-Long Blackout

          About 90,000 residents were ordered to evacuate towns near a massive Northern California wildfire Saturday, and the state’s largest utility began power shut-offs for an estimated 2.35 million people due to forecasts of severe winds and extreme fire danger.

    • Finance

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • You Can’t Count On Bots To Do A Person’s Job

        This reminds me of how McKay Smith, who does moving tweet threads documenting The Holocaust and memorializing the dead, periodically has his account threatened.

        How can we remember the atrocities (and maybe avoid repeating them) if they are constantly erased from the social media platforms that are increasingly where Americans and people around the globe get their information?

      • Trump speaks at HBCU Benedict College as students are asked to stay in dorms

        Benedict students, who the week prior pondered what questions they might ask the president once his surprise visit to the forum” was announced, were asked to stay in their dorms.

        Seven students were allowed inside for the speech.

        The requests for students and faculty to remain inside was a matter of security, school spokeswoman Kymm Hunter said. The school’s police worked in conjunction with the Secret Service to develop a security plan out of “safety concerns and threats of protests,” she said.

        Classes were canceled, and students were served lunch inside their dorms from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m.

    • Privacy/Surveillance

      • Smartphones with wheels: how modern transportation brings new privacy problems

        Tracking vehicles as a way of carrying out surveillance has been used by governments around the world for years. When exactly it should be allowed is still a hot topic, in the US at least. And it’s not just the police that use tracking devices. Recently it emerged that the car manufacturer Mercedes has covertly installed them in all its new and used cars. They’re employed for a rather striking purpose – in what the company calls “extreme circumstances”: when finance customers have defaulted on their payments. The company shares vehicle location information with recovery firms who then try to seize the cars. Although clearly an unacceptable infringement of people’s privacy, it’s primitive compared to what is coming. Here’s why vehicle-based surveillance is about to get much worse, as outlined by McKinsey…

      • Meet Tom Drake, the NSA Whistleblower Cheney Wanted to ‘Fry’

        The constant drumbeat of demands to reveal the names of whistleblowers who filed a complaint against President Trump gives Drake horrible “flashbacks,” he says. And while Republicans endlessly repeat that the American people have a “right to know” their identities, Drake doesn’t agree.

        “The identity of the whistleblower is irrelevant,” he says. “The focus should be on the message, not the messenger. The information that was provided doesn’t require the whistleblower to come before Congress.” (Congress has been issuing subpoenas to first-hand witnesses to substantiate the complaint.)

        “I have major concerns for the safety of the whistleblower,” Drake continues. “The president of the United States hasn’t minced words in terms of his perspective. If you call out the behavior of a president…they’re going to counterattack. Mine happened behind closed doors. The counterattack on the Ukraine whistleblower is occurring in full view of the public.”

      • Adobe Exposed Data of More Than 7 Million Software Users

        Adobe addressed the vulnerability the same day it was discovered, Oct. 19, said the person, who asked not to be identified discussing the breach. The San Jose, California-based software maker said it shut off public access to a database of customer email addresses last week, according to a blog post Friday.

      • ?fbclid

        As some of you might have noticed, Facebook started adding a tracking token to all URLs as a query string “?fbclid=XXXXXXXXX”. I don’t know how it works, exactly. Perhaps it rattles to FB when people re-inject these links into FB after they cycle through other social media. Either way, today I found a website that innocently fails to work when shared on FB: Whomp. If one tries to share a comic strip, such as “It’s Training Men”, FB appends its token, and makes the URL invalid.

    • Freedom of Information / Freedom of the Press

      • The West Marks Anniversary of Khashoggi’s Murder By Resuming Business as Usual with Saudi Arabia

        Fast forward twelve months. The cloud of suspicion for the killing hangs over the de facto ruler of Saudi Arabia, Mohammed bin Salman (MBS), more than ever. There has been no “Justice for Jamal”: a court hearing with 11 people on trial is not being held in public, none of the suspects are named and the whereabouts of ringleader Saud al-Qahtani remains a mystery.

        Even more damning for Mr Bone Saw were the conclusions by both the CIA and the UN Special Rapporteur that he most likely ordered the killing.

        And yet, despite the apparent growing culpability of MBS, many politicians have now decided it’s somehow all right to turn up at the financial summit on Tuesday.

      • Turkey Targets Foreign Journalists in Press Freedom Crackdown

        Prosecutors alleged the cover constituted an insult to the president, a crime under Turkish law commonly used to target journalists in Turkey, according to Emma Sinclair-Webb, Turkey director for Human Rights Watch, an international NGO that conducts research and advocacy for human rights.

        “The charge in general is one that’s been in the penal code for years. But it was not until Erdogan became president that there’s been a huge escalation in the use of that charge to prosecute people who are critical of the president,” Sinclair-Webb said.

        Turkish reporters are frequent targets of Erdogan, but increasingly foreign journalists based in Turkey are also facing legal action, said Nate Schenkkan, director for special research at Freedom House, an independent think tank that covers issues related to democracy and human rights.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • Episode 51: What is Social Justice and who are these Social Justice Warriors? – Along The Line Podcast

        Along the Line, is a member of the Demcast network, brought to you by the Media Freedom Foundation. On today’s episode hosts are Nicholas Baham III (Dr. Dreadlocks), Janice Domingo,  and Nolan Higdon explore social justice and the notion of social justice warriors. ATL’s  Creative Director is Dylan Lazaga.  Mickey Huff is ATL’s producer. ATL’s engineer is Janice Domingo. Adam Armstrong is ATL’s webmaster.

      • Iraq: Protesters Killed by Teargas Canisters

        Iraqi security forces fired tear gas canisters into crowds, killing at least eight protesters, during demonstrations in Baghdad on October 25, 2019.

      • With Little Fanfare, William Barr Formally Announces Orwellian Pre-Crime Program

        Last Wednesday, U.S. Attorney General William Barr issued a memorandum to all U.S. attorneys, law enforcement agencies and top ranking Justice Department officials announcing the imminent implementation of a new “national disruption and early engagement program” aimed at detecting potential mass shooters before they commit any crime.

        Per the memorandum, Barr has “directed the Department [of Justice] and the FBI to lead an effort to refine our ability to identify, assess and engage potential mass shooters before they strike.” The Attorney General further described the coming initiative, slated to be implemented early next year, as “an efficient, effective and programmatic strategy to disrupt individuals who are mobilizing towards violence, by all lawful means.” More specific information about the program is set to follow the recent memorandum, according to Barr, though it is unclear if that forthcoming document will be made public.

      • Mumbai: Youth held for blackmailing minor using morphed images, videos of her

        The Cyber Cell of Mumbai Police helped identify the location from where the Wi-Fi network was frequently used to send the messages.

        Once the area was located, the crime branch officials apprehended the accused at in central Mumbai.

        The mobile phone used to send the messages was recovered from the accused.

        During interrogation, the accused revealed that he had earlier targeted two more victims using the same modus operandi.

      • ICE secretly deports troubled Iraq War veteran to El Salvador. That’s a disgrace.

        A Marine combat veteran, one who served two tours in Iraq where he was seriously injured, has received the thanks of a grateful nation.

        Late Tuesday night or early Wednesday morning, he was kicked out of the country, deported from Arizona to El Salvador where his life may be in danger given his U.S. military service.

        “They snuck him out in the middle of the night,” Texas attorney Tom Sanchez told the Orange County Register.

        Take a good look in the mirror today, America. Tell me, what do you see?

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

      • As President Trump Tweets And Deletes, The Historical Record Takes Shape

        Because each president has their own relationship to NARA and the Records Act, it is unclear what, if any, precedent the Trump administration is setting with its handling of tweets.

        Presidents have always been reluctant to make their records public, and in that sense, this is nothing new, Quigley said. For example, President George W. Bush signed an executive order in 2001 that limited the public’s ability to access presidential records. It was revoked by President Barack Obama in 2009.

        “The difference with President Trump is that he uses Twitter in a way that no one has before, and is using it as a policy platform in a way that other presidents have not,” Quigley said. “And that makes it a more critical document.”

        If future presidents continue to use the platform this way, the importance of archiving and accessing tweets will grow, Quigley said.

      • The evolution of the web, and a eulogy for XHTML2

        In 2009, the W3C cancelled the development of the proposed successor of XHTML, XHTML2.

        As far as I can tell, I was approximately the only person saddened by this. However, its cancellation was little more than a foregone conclusion after the events of the years preceding that decision. A kind of coup had occurred in which the standards-setting authority of the W3C was effectively usurped by a new upstart standards-setter, WHATWG, with their own alternative proposal for the future of HTML, HTML5. WHATWG and its proposal gained traction and eventually the W3C was forced to effectively adopt HTML5. All of the industry traction fell in behind HTML5 and the death of XHTML2 became inevitable.

      • Dear Comcast, I Noticed Your Email About My Tweet and Wanted You to Have This Blog

        In that article, we attached a full copy of the slide deck that Comcast made and also quoted Comcast extensively; the slide deck explains Comcast’s position on the issue at length. Experts speculated that the reason Comcast is lobbying against the plan is that Comcast wants to have the option to track its users.

        This is a reasonable conclusion. In 2017, ISPs and the advertising industry lobbied Congress to kill Federal Communication Commission rules that would have prevented ISPs from selling your personal data to advertisers. And in March, the Federal Trade Commission launched an investigation into whether ISPs are selling user browser history and personal information.

      • The FCC is using streaming services as an excuse to raise cable rates

        Under the Cable Act of 1992, local regulators are permitted to regulate cable prices in markets with only one provider. The provision is meant to prevent cable companies from leveraging that monopoly power to set unfairly high rates. When a new cable company comes to town, providers can file a petition to have those regulations removed.

        Charter’s case centered on a small group of territories in Massachusetts and Hawaii, but Charter’s new competition wasn’t coming from a competing cable TV service. Instead, Charter argued that AT&T’s streaming service, combined with the company’s existing broadband offering, made up a close enough substitute for cable TV that Charter no longer counted as a local monopoly. Despite opposition from both Massachusetts and Hawaii state governments, the FCC ultimately agreed, leaving Charter free to raise its cable rates.

    • Monopolies

      • Amazon Last-Minute Halloween Costumes May Be Scary, But Jeff Bezos’s Vast Fortune Is Scarier

        But when it comes to how to celebrate Halloween without involving Amazon, I have a few ideas. Dig through that bag of clothes you forgot about at the back of your closet. Bug your family, friends, or roommates who already have their costumes all set for a chance to raid their wardrobes. Check out a local secondhand or thrift store for a unique find to build an entire look around — that’s how I found the perfect red dress for my devilish ensemble. Or, worst-case scenario, pop into a brick-and-mortar Halloween store.

        We all have to decide where to draw the line in the sand when it comes to when and how we say enough is enough. This Halloween, I hope you’ll join me in saying Jeff Bezos has enough money, Amazon workers have enough on their plates, and Halloween can be enough frightful fun without those last-minute costume accessories ordered through Prime.

      • Japan: Inspection system: sacred sword or rusty sword?

        The committee report says that the inspection system is expected to be used as a sacred sword. With regard to the expression ‘sacred sword’, Judge Shitara believes that the inspection system should be the last trump card and should not be used often. The court’s practice will probably be in-keeping with this, but on the other hand, if the requirements are too strict, the court would seldom use the system and then the rusty sword could not be drawn at all, and the system would become meaningless. Commissoiner Munakata stated that the inspection system is not a cannot-be-drawn sacred sword, but that the existence of an inspection system can be expected to encourage voluntary submission of evidence at an early stage. It was pointed out that it would be difficult for the courts to operate if the requirements for inspection system were tightened. However, as there was a strong voice from the industry concerning the leakage of trade secrets, and the introduction of an inspection system that forcedly enters the other party’s premises was new in Japan, Commissoiner Munakata decided to introduce the system and pay close attention to the practice while tightening the requirements as a first step. Judge Shitara stated that it could be used for method patents, if there is a guarantee that after a certain degree of probability is proved, the defendant would eventually disclose or the inspection would provide relevant proof.

      • Businesses fear counterfeit burden with China’s social credit system

        The threat of sanctions will be a strong motivation for companies to up their game to prevent IP infringement, according to industry experts

      • Response to Similar Secrets by Fishman & Varadarajan

        Professors Joseph Fishman and Deepa Varadarajan have argued trade secret law should be more like copyright law. Specifically, they argue trade secret law should not prevent people (especially departing employees who obtained the trade secret lawfully within the scope of their employment) from making new end uses of trade secret information, so long as it’s not a foreseeable use of the underlying information and is generally outside of the plaintiff’s market. The authors made this controversial argument at last year’s IP Scholars conference at Berkeley Law, and in their new article in University of Pennsylvania Law Review, called “Similar Secrets.”

        My full response to Similar Secrets is now published in the University of Pennsylvania Law Review Online. It is called: “Should Dissimilar Uses Of Trade Secrets Be Actionable?” The response explains in detail why I think the answer is, as a general matter, YES. It can be downloaded at: https://www.pennlawreview.com/online/168-U-Pa-L-Rev-Online-78.pdf

        There is lots to like here. Pam Samuelson has written a rave review on JOTWELL, writing that she finds the article’s thesis “surprisingly persuasive,” and noting that “[t]he adaptations recommended [in Similar Secrets] may not impact trade secrecy law as much as some practitioners might fear[.]” Like Samuelson, I agree that a close read of the authors’ proposal shows that it would not actually condone most conceivable uses of trade secrets. In particular, the authors make clear that end uses that destroy the secrecy of valid trade secrets, even if totally dissimilar, would still be illegal. However, unlike Samuelson, I disagree with the authors’ underlying premise. Allowing people to use valid, non-expired trade secrets, whether for directly competing uses or for completely dissimilar, non-competitive end uses, fundamentally conflicts with the idea that the goal of trade secret law, as distinguished from the goal of copyright law, is to preserve the secrecy of information.

      • The African Regional Intellectual Property Organization (ARIPO) Model Law on Copyright and Related Right

        Last week, the African Regional Intellectual Property Organization (ARIPO) published the ARIPO Model Law on Copyright and Related Rights (the Model Law). The ARIPO member states are expected to adopt and/or adapt the Model Law for their respective national purposes.

      • Patents and Software Patents

        • Capcom wins higher damages in patent infringement case against Koei Tecmo Games

          In this case, Capcom alleges Koei Tecmo has infringed on its two patents JP3350773 and JP3295771 in Koei Tecmo’s action games (Dynasty Warriors) and Samurai Warriors and horror game (Fatal Frame). The 773 patent covers a feature which gives users benefits (e.g. addition of characters) by inputting game data of the previous game of the series. And the 771 patent covers a feature which vibrates a game controller at a specific scene in the game.

          Regarding damages, Capcom claimed the amount of damages calculated under Article 102 (3) of the Patent Act. This provision stipulates the minimum amount of damages that is equivalent to licensing fee. The damages under this provision is, as a general rule, calculated by multiplying the sales of the infringing products by a licensing royalty rate.

        • AIPLA 2019: US patent prosecution tips

          Lawyers and a WIPO representative have revealed tips for effective patent prosecution in the US

          The discussion kicked off with Kirk Damman, a member at Lewis Rice, handing down his self-described 10 commandments for application data sheet (ADS) applications.

        • Avanci, Nokia, Sharp insist that Judge Koh should dismiss Continental’s FRAND/antitrust complaint–even with prejudice

          In late August, Avanci, Nokia, Sharp, and a couple of non-practicing entities filed a joint motion to dismiss automotive supplier Continental#s San Jose FRAND/antitrust complaint over component-level SEP licensing. In early October, Continental opposed the defendants’ motion and accused the Avanci patent pool of a “conspiracy” to “boycott[] suppliers so [patentees] can collect hold-up royalties downstream.”

        • Presiding Judge Pichlmaier explains rationale behind granting Nokia’s anti-antisuit injunction against Continental’s U.S. antisuit motion

          On Thursday evening, the Landgericht München I (Munich I Regional Court)–by now one of Germany’s three leading patent litigation venues–celebrated the 10th anniversary of the “Münchner Verfahren” (“Munich procedure”) for patent infringement cases. It’s what U.S. district courts typically call Local Patent Rules.

          Former Presiding Judge Dr. Peter Guntz–who left the regional court’s bench several years ago to become a (presumably far better-paid after taxes) member of the Technical Boards of Appeal of the European Patent–and a patent litigator (Olaf Giebe) explained how Munich’s Local Patent Rules came into being. There had been some informal exchanges between patent-specialized judges and lawyers, and one of the topics they discussed was Munich’s conspicuous lack of popularity as a patent litigation venue as compared to Düsseldorf and Mannheim at the time.

          Mr. Giebe wrote up a one-pager that laid out three priorities to work on toward improvement. One of them was that lawyers simply had a better idea of what to expect in procedural terms from the two aforementioned courts, and Munich needed to catch up on clarity. Speed obviously matters, too. The third item, however, was somewhat sensitive: it came down to suggesting plaintiff-friendlier claim constructions, but without specific proposals. There just was a feeling in the patent litigation community at the time that the courts in Düsseldorf and Mannheim were more willing to construe patent claims in a way that enabled plaintiffs to prevail.

          Former Presiding Judge Dr. Guntz stressed that the fathers of Munich’s Local Patent Rules didn’t want to attract patent cases by means of patentee-friendly rulings–but it sounded like Munich was deemed too restrictive in plaintiffs’ eyes.

        • Munich I Regional Court developing Local Standard-Essential Patent Rules applying Huawei v. ZTE CJEU case law

          This is the second post on the Munich I Regional Court’s celebration of the 10th anniversary of its Local Patent Rules (on Thursday). In the previous pos (on the history of Munich’s Local Patent Rules and on Presiding Judge Tobias Pichlmaier’s explanation of the rationale behind granting Nokia’s anti-antisuit injunctions against Daimler supplier Continental) I already announced that I would separately write about Presiding Judge Dr. Matthias Zigann’s outline of various ideas surrounding the court’s forthcoming Local Standard-Essential Patent Rules.

          Judges Pichlmaier and Dr. Zigann preside over different divisions (21st and 7th Civil Chamber, respectively). Local Rules obviously apply to both patent-specialized divisions alike.

          [...]

          One idea that neither presentation elaborates on in full detail is that a patentee may divide a portfolio up into two groups–sort of an A list and a B list of SEPs. The patents on one of the two lists would be eligible for a retroactive reduction of the license fee by means of an implementer opting out. Closely related to the concept of the two lists is the preliminary idea of a “joker” that might reduce the royalties due to zero: that would be the case if any nullity and/or declaratory judgment actions brought by the implementer succeeded in taking down a contractually-predefined number of declared-essential patents from the A list.

          For now I will refrain from sharing my thoughts on the Munich court’s preliminary SEP rules here. I just wanted to be of service to my esteemed readers and share the two documents as well as some additional information on where things stand. Again, this is very much in flux. The court has received input from various stakeholders, and will continue to listen to feedback and suggestions until those rules are finalized, which may very well happen by the end of this calendar year.

        • Trolls and Qualcomm invite UK Supreme Court to render Non-Discrimination part of FRAND meaningless: Unwired Planet v. Huawei

          This is my seventh post on this week’s UK Supreme Court hearing in Unwired Planet v. Huawei, after which I’ll focus (until there’s further news from the London case) on some other topics, such as a couple of filings in the Northern District of California (one of which, like Unwired Planet v. Huawei, involves leveraged financial engineering behind patent lawsuits) as well as the Munich I Regional Court’s 10-year anniversary, and forthcoming SEP-related extension, of its Local Patent Rules.

        • Turkey: Conversion of a Non-Examined Patent to an Examined Patent During Court Proceedings

          A Turkish company active in the automotive sector filed a patent infringement action against a German global automotive company. The Turkish company alleged that a system used in the cars of the German company was infringing its non-examined patent granted by the Turkish Patent and Trademark Office (‘TPTO’). As a counter-attack, the German company and its Turkish authorized dealer filed an invalidation action against the non-examined patent in question before the same Court. Although at the filling date of the invalidation action the patent was granted as a non-examined patent, during the court proceedings, the patent owner applied to the TPTO in order to convert its non-examined patent into an examined patent. Consequently, the status of the patent in question changed from a granted non-examined patent into a pending examined patent application. Obviously the strategy of the Turkish company was to jeopardise the pending invalidation action procedure on the grounds that an invalidation action cannot be filed against a pending patent application.

          The court appointed expert panel concluded that the non-examined patent did not meet the novelty criteria over the prior art documents. The Turkish company objected to the expert report, stating that they applied to the TPTO to convert the non-examined patent to the examined patent application and the outcome of that process should be awaited. The German company strongly objected to the request to delay the proceedings. The German company emphasized the main procedural rule and established Court of Appeal case law which says that the conditions at the filling date of an action should be taken into consideration while deciding on the merits of the action. Consequently, the Court should consider that the patent in question was granted as a non-examined patent at the filing date of the invalidation action. The German company also pointed out that the patent owner’s application to the TPTO was in bad faith as its aim was to delay the outcome of the invalidation action.

        • Book Review: Translation Accuracy and Dissemination of Disclosure of Patent Information: An Analysis of Translation and its Influence on Patent Law

          Chapter 1, titled “Innovation, disclosure and patent law”, discusses the relevance of the concept of disclosure as a linking element between innovation and patent rights. It demonstrates that disclosure has changed, together with a tendency to growing internationalisation of the patent system, and with contemporary theories that approach innovation through a perspective which involves dynamism and globalisation. Chapter 2 describes the methods used for the research. Chapter 3 is titled “Law as a communication system and the patent system (being considered as a system) based on (especially machine) translation”. It provides a current overview of the systemic nature of patent rights, emphasising the importance of the advent of quality machine translation for a global configuration of the patent system in terms of disclosure and dissemination. Chapter 4, titled “Translation as a vehicle to patent rights”, outlines the features of the patent text in association with translation.

        • Unwired Planet update: FRAND jurisdictional concerns ‘simply untrue’

          Managing IP brings the latest from Unwired Planet v Huawei as counsel for both sides tussle over jurisdictional concerns

        • Unwired Planet day 2: FRAND jurisdictional concerns ‘simply untrue’

          Managing IP brings the latest from Unwired Planet v Huawei as counsel for both sides tussle over jurisdictional concerns

        • UK Supreme Court tackles ‘surprising’ FRAND ruling

          Managing IP reports live from day one at the UK Supreme Court, where arguments in a hotly contested IP dispute – Unwired Planet v Huawei – have begun

        • Patent case: SCA Tissue France SAS, Spain

          In a complex and interesting validity and infringement case, the Barcelona Court of Appeals (Section 15), Spain’s most experienced patent court, tackles a plethora of issues: linguistic interpretation of European patents; long-time tolerance of patent infringement; assignee estoppel vis-à-vis third parties; claim construction; and indirect evidence of (non)-infringement of a product claim in cases where, for evidentiary purposes, such claim is de facto assimilated to a product-by-process claim.

        • Patent case: Bombardier Recreational Products Inc. v. Arctic Cat Inc., USA

          A jury’s verdict that snowmobile frame patents asserted against Arctic Cat were indefinite and invalid as anticipated or obvious was supported by substantial evidence.

          A federal district court correctly upheld a jury verdict invalidating two Bombardier Recreational Products Inc. snowmobile frame patents because substantial evidence supported the jury’s findings that Bombardier’s patent related to rider seat position was indefinite, and its patent for a pyramidal brace assembly was anticipated by prior art snowmobiles, according to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.

        • How and where may implementers sue for FRAND-licences?

          Vestel is a Turkey-based manufacturer of electronic consumer products, including televisions. In order to broadcast high-definition content, televisions must apply the so-called HEVC protocol. Patents have been declared to be essential to the HEVC standard and bundled in (at least) two patent pools, the Advance patent pool and the MPEG LA pool. The patents in each pool overlap to a significant extent and FRAND-declarations have been made in respect of all patents in each pool.

          Vestel seeks a licence to practise the HEVC standard. Patent licences are entered into by the Turkish parent company, which manufactures the television sets and sells them to local group companies, such as Vestel UK. Vestel UK then markets the televisions to wholesalers and retailers in the UK.

          Vestel obtained a licence from the MPEG LA pool. It stated that, thereby, it obtained a licence to about 81% of the SEPs in the Advance pool, but when it approached Advance for a licence to the remaining patents, it demanded royalty rates many times higher than the MPEG LA pool, i.e. Advance allegedly refused to make Vestel a licence offer on FRAND conditions.

          In parallel, Vestel also approached Philips, a major patent holder in the Advance pool. But Vestel claim that Philips, too, demanded too high a royalty rate and refused to negotiate about a rate that might be considered FRAND.

        • In re General Electric Co. (Fed. Cir. 2019)

          The panel also rejected GE’s arguments that other aspects of the amended claims narrowed their scope, saying that “[a]ny narrowing accomplished by those limitations is thus unrelated to the surrendered subject matter and therefore insufficient to avoid recapture,” citing Mostafazadeh, 643 F.3d at 1358. And the opinion also rejected GE’s “overlooked aspect” arguments on the grounds that “[e]ach purportedly narrowing limitation identified by General Electric was within the scope of at least one original claim of the ’705 patent and therefore, cannot be said to be an ‘overlooked aspect’ [of the claims].”

          Finally the panel similarly rejected the “overlooked aspects” argument with regard to the ’427 and ’483 divisional applications, on the basis that these particular embodiments were within the scope of the original claims.

          Reissue applications can be valuable tools to obtain claims of appropriate scope (particularly in conjunction with inter partes review, where amendments are much more difficult to come by). But as this decision illustrates, it is equally important to keep in mind during prosecution the scope that is being relinquished and, should broader scope be necessary or advantageous to keep a continuation or divisional application pending.

        • Eligibility: ChargePoint takes its Network-Controlled Charging Station to the Supreme Court

          I drive a Honda Clarity — a Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV) — and use ChargePoint connected charging stations when I travel out of town. The patent here — U.S. Patent No. 8,138,715* — essentially covers remote-control of the charging station (i.e., via your phone). Asserted claim 1 requires a transceiver that receives a “turn on” signal from a remote server. The transceiver then sends a signal to a “controller” that then triggers a switch (“control device”). Dependent claim 2 adds an electrical coupler whose electric supply is switched on/off by the control device. My understanding is that all of these items could be configured within item 110 (below) that the inventors lexicographed as a “Smartlets™” — although the claims do not require the apparatus to take the cute boxy-shape displayed below.

          [...]

          The court went-on to hold that the claim breadth “would preempt the use of any networked charging stations.”

          Alice Step 2: At step-2, ChargePoint argued that it solved practical problems in the field by creating a new way of remote control and network control of a charging system. The problem for the Court was that the alleged inventive concept here is network control — which the court already found to be the problematic abstract idea.

          The court gives ChargePoint props for a good idea and implementation — but the problem here really is the breadth of the claims that basically join together two well-known concepts.

        • USPTO Issues Proposed Rules on Burden of Proof for Motions to Amend in Post-Grant Proceedings

          The PTAB then brought its decisions in line with the Federal Circuit’s holdings and placed the burden of persuasion on the petitioner in post-grant proceedings. However, it made it clear that the “Board itself may justify any finding of unpatentability by reference to evidence of record in the proceeding,” such as when the petitioner has stopped prosecuting the case due to settlement. See Western Digital Corp. v. SPEX Techs., Inc., Case Nos. IPR2018-00082, -00084 (P.T.A.B. Apr. 25, 201) (Paper 13). The USPTO also sought comments from the public on two questions related to the burden of proof for motions to amend. First, should it engage in formal rulemaking to codify its decision in Western Digital? Second, if the burdens are allocated as set forth in Western Digital, when should the Board itself act to justify unpatentability?

          The USPTO received 49 comments, 25 of which provided specific answers to the questions it posed. The vast majority of the specific responses were in favor of rulemaking, and a smaller majority suggested that the rules should mirror the Western Digital decision. Similarly, a substantial majority believed that the PTAB should not be limited to any specific posture of the proceedings in which to exercise discretion on patentability. However, two believed that the PTAB should never be permitted to exercise discretion and three believed that it should only be permitted to do so in certain factual scenarios (such as when the petitioner stops participating).

          Thus, the USPTO promulgated the draft rules. In doing so, it suggested that the PTAB will rarely exercise its discretion to find a lack of patentability on its own, most likely when the petitioner stops participating (including due to settlement) or when it does not oppose the motion to amend. Importantly, however, the reasons for refusing an amendment must already appear in the record and be in the interests of justice. On the other hand, even if the patentee fails to make its required showings in its motion to amend, the PTAB can exercise its discretion to allow amendment in the rare situation it believes justice suggests it do so if the evidence needed to permit the amendment is already in the record.

        • McClurg v. Kingsland, 42 U.S. 202 (1843) – Shop Rights and Retroactive Patent Statutes

          The Federal Circuit decided this case in August 2019. Arthrex recently petitioned for en banc rehearing raising again the constitutional question and noting that Eldred + McClurg were focusing on permissible retroactive congressional expansion of rights, not impermissible degradation.

        • Federal Circuit Filters Out Late Argument

          The non-precedential decision includes an interesting bit on PTAB procedure. The IPR was instituted on both obviousness and anticipation grounds. During the trial briefing Google shifted obviousness theory. In particular, Google began to argue that the claimed high-pass-filter element would have been obvious. This was a change because Google had previously argued that the filter was disclosed in the cited art. Note here that Google did not present this argument until the reply-brief stage. At that point, the Board refused to consider the argument because it was raised at such a late stage and that Philips “did not have a fair and meaningful opportunity to respond.”

          On appeal, the Federal Circuit has affirmed — holding that the “Board was within its discretion in declining to consider this obviousness theory that was outside the scope of the petition for inter partes review.”

          Claim at issue relate to splitting an audio transmission into high and low frequency portions and then separately filtering them for noise. Because the human ear does not distinguish high-frequency sounds as well, a computationally cheaper filter works well.

          [...]

          Claim at issue relate to splitting an audio transmission into high and low frequency portions and then separately filtering them for noise. Because the human ear does not distinguish high-frequency sounds as well, a computationally cheaper filter works well.

        • Eligibility issues During Inter Partes Review Proceedings

          In Uniloc v. Hulu now pending before the Federal Circuit, the patentee submitted a set of substitute claims during the IPR proceedings after its original claims were found ineligible in a separate court proceedings. The PTAB denied Uniloc’s motion to enter the substitute claims — finding that those new claims are also ineligible under 35 U.S.C. § 101. I’ll note here that the the amended claims are narrower than the original claims (the amendment added additional limitations).

          [...]

          One distinguishing feature here, however, is that PTO issued particular regulations regarding amendments and Section 112 — requiring a showing of “support in the original disclosure” for any amendments. The regulations say nothing about eligibility. 37 C.F.R. § 42.121(b). The basic idea here favoring Uniloc is that this is an area where the PTO could regulate, but it cannot regulate from the hip via PTAB decisions. See Aqua Prods.

          The additional feature of the argument here has to do with the nature that IPR amendments are narrowing amendments. Narrowing amendments basically do not raise new eligibility problems.

          In its brief, Uniloc also has an alternative request — that the Court remand for a new eligibility analysis based upon the PTO’s new eligibility guidance. (The PTAB’s denial here was made prior to the Jan 2019 eligibility guidance, and that guidance was recently updated in October 2019). USPTO responds that Uniloc did not explain how its amendments would be sufficient to overcome the collateral district court invalidity finding — “Uniloc bears the burden of showing that the Board committed reversible

      • Trademarks

        • Event report: Tertulia on EUIPO Boards of Appeal Case Law

          Humphreys kicked off his presentation stressing the importance (and also the difficulties in the assessment) of the balance between different fundamental rights and freedoms. He recalled the two provisions which allow to refuse registration of a trade mark or a design on grounds of it being contrary to public policy or accepted principles of morality (respectively, Articles 7(1)(f) EUTMR and 9 CDR). He presented two cases where the Board of Appeal and the General Court confirmed refusal of registration of a sign as a trade mark on grounds that it was considered contrary to public policy: BIN LADIN (R-176/2004-2) and LA MAFIA SE SIENTA A LA MESA (T-1/17) (the latter sign meaning: the mafia takes a sit at the table) [here].

          These two cases had a different outcome than, eg, Dick and Fanny case (R-111/2002-4). In the latter, it was decided that the mark might have, in coarse slang, a sexual connotation. However, these words merely designate things and do not transmit any message. Hence, refusal of registration on grounds of either public policy or accepted principles of morality was not justified. Humphreys underlined that, however, the Dick and Fanny case is quite dated, and the outcome might be different today.

        • In-house SkyKick reaction: we don’t go ‘overboard’ in TM strategy

          In-house counsel at multinationals, a fashion brand and a pharma company say the EU opinion should still provide room for manoeuvre but that Sky’s strategy went “too far”

        • General Court confirms cancellation of EU trade mark consisting of the shape of famous Rubik’s Cube

          Further to the 2016 judgment (C-30/15 P) of the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) [Katpost here] and the return of the case to the EUIPO, yesterday the General Court (GC) issued yet another ruling (T-601/17).

          The GC confirmed that the trade mark registration should be cancelled on consideration that it falls within the scope of application of the absolute ground in what is currently Article 7(1)(e)(ii) EUTMR (the case was decided under the 1994 Regulation).

          [...]

          Among other things, the Second Board of Appeal considered that the mark would not be contrary to Article 7(1)(e)(ii) EUTMR, in that the required assessment is one that only considers the representation of the sign, not ‘alleged or supposed invisible features’.

          Further to yet another unsuccessful appeal to the General Court (GC) (T-450/09), as mentioned, in 2016 the CJEU set aside the GC decision in its entirety and gave final ruling on the matter. The CJEU only considered the ground concerning alleged infringement of Article 7(1)(e)(ii) EUTMR, and upheld Simba Toys’s ground of appeal: the GC had interpreted the absolute ground too narrowly. According to the CJEU, the EUIPO and the GC should have taken into consideration, not just the sign’s representation, but also non-visible functional elements of the product represented by that shape, such as its rotating capability.

          The matter thus returned to the EUIPO. In 2017, the First Board of Appeal invalidated the registration in its entirety and cancelled the trade mark from the register. A further appeal to the GC naturally followed.

        • General Court says that relevant public’s attention is ‘average at best’ when assessing likelihood of confusion relating to games and computer games (so that DUNGEONS is confusingly similar to DUNGEONS AND DRAGONS)

          In September 2014, Kalypso Media Group filed (the Applicant) sought to register the word mark ’DUNGEONS’ as an EU trade mark (EUTM). The application was for certain goods in Classes 9 (computer game software), 28 (games for amusement arcades and electronic games and coin-operated games, playing cards, toy figurines) and 41 (provision of online computer games and electronic publication services; games on the internet) of the Nice Classification.

          In February 2015, Wizards of the Coast LLC (the Opponent) filed a notice of opposition on the basis of its two earlier registered EUTM ‘Dungeons & Dragons’. One of the two earlier registered EUTMs had been registered since November 2009 for certain goods and services in Classes 9 (scientific, nautical, surveying, photographic, cinematographic, optical, weighing, measuring, signalling, checking, life-saving and teaching apparatus and instruments), 28 (toys, games and playthings, gaming machines including slot machines) and 41 (education, entertainment, sporting and cultural activities) of the Nice Classification.

          In light of Article 8(1)(b) of Regulation 2017/1001 (EU Trade Mark Regulation (EUTMR)), the Opposition Division held that there was a likelihood of confusion in respect of all goods and services covered by the earlier marks. The applicant appealed the decision to the Fourth Board of Appeal of EUIPO in April 2018.

      • Copyrights

        • A twist (with apologies to Chubby Checker) in the music business when public transportation is involved

          Can the use of audiovisual works in public transportation be considered an act of communication to the public, such that a collecting society may demand the payment of royalties?

          [.,.]

          In the view of this author, it was a bit far-fetched to view the use of an audiovisual work in a bus as the basis for imposing royalties on the transportation companies. Moreover, the “Berne three steps test” under Articles 9.2 of the Berne Convention and 21 of the Decision 351/1993 does not seem to have been taken into account.

          The test is used as a means to avoid the excessive application of copyright limitations and exceptions, providing that the contracting parties may allow the reproduction of the works in certain (i) special cases, (ii) provided that such reproduction does not conflict with a normal exploitation of the work; and (iii) does not unreasonably prejudice the legitimate interests of the author.

          Public transportation is not used because of the radio/audiovisual content that it provides, but rather to move people from one place to another. Thus, this could arguably be considered as a special case, and on this same ground, understood as not in conflict with the normal exploitation, or prejudicial to the author’s legitimate interests. Since the use of audiovisual content by the transportation companies is hardly needed to provide their main service, one could infer that the benefits received from the transportation business are not directly or indirectly related to the use of audiovisual content.

        • Copyright Alternative in Small-Claims Enforcement Act of 2019

          H.R. 2426 passed the House with a vote of 410-6. The Bill now moves to the Senate.

        • Guest Post: Martin v Kogan: Court of Appeal clarifies joint authorship test

          The much anticipated judgment of Kogan v Martin [2019] EWCA Civ 1645 was recently handed down by the Court of Appeal (CA) which revisits the thorny issue of joint authorship of copyright works.

        • France: Originality and beauty are not the same

          European regulations provide the possibility for works of applied art to benefit from both design right protection and copyright protection (for artistic work). Each form of protection is subject to its own specific rules. The scope and conditions of protection by copyright are subject to national rules.

          The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) has clarified the conditions for protection by copyright.

          The litigation involved a designer. He complained that several of his clothing designs had been copied and he claimed copyright protection for these designs as original intellectual creations, as they were works producing an aesthetic effect. The first and second instance courts in Portugal ruled that “copyright benefits applied art works, industrial design and design works as long as they present an original character, namely they result from an intellectual personal creation from their author, without requiring a certain aesthetic or artistic value”, deciding that the relevant clothes designs indeed benefit from such protection.

        • RomUniverse Admin Asks Court to Dismiss Nintendo’s Piracy Lawsuit
        • IPTV Smarters App Back on Google Play After Winning Copyright Dispute

Support Alexandre Oliva as Acting FSF President (Vice President, Interim Co-President)

Posted in Free/Libre Software, FSF, GNU/Linux, Kernel at 4:37 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Alexandre Oliva

Summary: Based on his track record, Alexandre Oliva would be a good pick as permanent leader for the Free Software Foundation (FSF) as he already has very strong GNU and Linux (kernel) credentials

RECENTLY, I’ve had many opportunities to chat with Alexandre Oliva, who told me “we [FSF] presently have two vice presidents, neither being a first vice president under the bylaws, so we jointly serve as acting president.”

“Being an American not from the United States, he also ‘ticks’ Red Hat’s ‘box’ for “diversity” (this seems to be what matters most to the people of IBM in the wake of Stallman’s departure).”He is one of them.

I’ve known Oliva for a long time and we wrote about him in the past, e.g. about his strong opposition to software patents and trolls. He’s very technical, he’s a longtime GNU contributor, and he truly values Software Freedom. Being an American not from the United States, he also ‘ticks’ Red Hat’s ‘box’ for “diversity” (this seems to be what matters most to the people of IBM in the wake of Stallman’s departure). Oliva, to his credit, had left Red Hat before IBM formally took over (citing concerns about proprietary software there). That shows his commitment and sacrifice.

“Perhaps Oliva can be to the FSF what Ole Gunnar Solskjær was to Manchester United last year/season.”The sincerity of Oliva (whom I sometimes call Alex) has convinced me that he would be a suitable successor for Stallman at the FSF. He may not be as ‘famous’ as Moglen or Perens, but his dedication to Software Freedom is a matter of public record and he has many years “left in him” (as the saying goes) before retirement age. In many ways he’s a lot like Techrights folks. He’s highly technical, he’s generally sceptical of corporations and he’s more patriotic or loyal to Software Freedom than to any particular nation or group. These are the qualities the FSF needs and those are exactly the things Stallman’s loudest and most notorious ousters loathe with a passion (they don’t care about the FSF; they want to nuke the whole thing!). Perhaps Oliva can be to the FSF what Ole Gunnar Solskjær was to Manchester United last year/season. Give him time to age and build his reputation. We would support him.

“As a bonus, Oliva is also a Linux developer in the sense that his main GNU project is a quasi-derivative of Linux. So he can help with Linux bridge-building…”And let’s face it; whoever runs the FSF needs very potent GNU credentials because Stallman leads the GNU project and FSF strongly depends on GNU (the software, licences and so on). As a bonus, Oliva is also a Linux developer in the sense that his main GNU project is a quasi-derivative of Linux. So he can help with Linux bridge-building (not the Linux Foundation but pertinent Linux developers, whose employer — if any — is not the Linux Foundation, at least 99% of the time).

Star Wars No: I am your GNU father. FSF 'rebels': we are nothing without GNU.

It Was Always About Money and Power

Posted in GNU/Linux, Microsoft at 3:46 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Recent: Azure Running GNU/Linux Isn’t About ‘Love’ But About Control

Pentagon loves Linux, Who's doing Linux?, Microsoft pretends it loves Linux (or taxing it), Ain't Microsoft into killing millions of people?

Summary: Microsoft loves Pentagon (and ICE) budget/contracts

IRC Proceedings: Saturday, October 26, 2019

Posted in IRC Logs at 2:25 am by Needs Sunlight

GNOME Gedit

GNOME Gedit

#techrights log

#boycottnovell log

GNOME Gedit

GNOME Gedit

#boycottnovell-social log

#techbytes log

Enter the IRC channels now

Somebody Needs to Explain to the Linux Foundation That GNU/Linux (or Software Freedom) is Not a Religion

Posted in Bill Gates, Free/Libre Software, GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Patents at 1:37 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Insulting advocates of GNU/Linux is a long tradition at the ‘Super PAC’ of Jim Zemlin

Linux religion

Summary: Long-held beliefs about the employer of Linus Torvalds (and guardian of his trademark) are proven more accurate over time because disdain and ridicule of the long-held beliefs that Software Freedom matters unmask that employer as what it really is (or stands for)

ALONG time ago we wrote about the projection tactics or the boring old smear that caring about computer users is a “religion”. As if it’s illogical and irrational. As if it’s bigoted and may lead to violence (and may therefore need to be stopped or watched closely). We had already seen smears like these in antitrust material. Microsoft, refusing to acknowledge its cult-like behaviour, recklessly accuses others of the same. “Religion” is a weird term to ascribe to/characterise non-religious/atheistic communities, unlike perhaps "cults" (cults do not necessarily have deities).

“Microsoft, refusing to acknowledge its cult-like behaviour, recklessly accuses others of the same.”More than a decade ago we took note of such smears (when failing to discredit the opposition’s argument, compare it to blind faith). Ten years ago we mentioned religion in relation to Mono/.NET, five years ago we said that Both Apple and Microsoft Compare Their Corporate Causes to Religion and Microsoft Fakes 'Charity' and Uses Religious Groups to Acquire Lock-in in the Public Sector; last year we said the same about patent maximalism at the management of the European Patent Office (EPO).

When one compares GNU or Linux (or both) to a religion one is in fact participating in — even bolstering — Microsoft’s attack on Software Freedom.

So Microsoft critics and sceptics are "nutcases", GNU/Linux is a “religion”, and everyone who does not agree with the Linux Foundation is just Donald Trump, according to the Linux.com editor who doesn’t even use GNU/Linux (Macs and Windows).

Some people like to take satires of Richard Stallman (e.g. about religion) to actually twist those jokes as seriousness, thus portraying GNU as a “religion”. They’d do anything to demonise people who speak about human rights and Software Freedom.

“As long as Zemlin protects Power that Power will protect him.”Speaking of Stallman, it’s hard to move on and simply forget about the damage unjustly done to his reputation if not his career as well. The media did a lot of damage after VICE had deliberately distorted what Stallman had said. For over a month this helped distract from the real MIT scandal, which involved Bill Gates, a self-loving cult leader and idol to a lot of people (because he spent two decades paying to media to do this). “Dead men may tell no tales, but the story of Jeffrey Epstein is far from over,” Peter M. D’Abrosca wrote in relation to Bill Gates flying with Epstein. Gates is still on the Microsoft Board of Directors and he flew on Epstein’s infamous plane; his name was disclosed in the flight logs. Bill Gates never denied that he flew the “Lolita Express” with Epstein. The documentary evidence is compelling enough that he cannot deny it (he already lied about other things in relation to Epstein, later to be caught in these lies that some media helped refute). Now he only ‘speaks’ through spokespeople. Here are some flight logs:

Bill Gates flight logs

“Numerous victims claim the plane was set up with a bed and used by Epstein and his guests to rape underage victims,” say sites on the Web (there’s corroboration), but look over there, everybody! Richard Stallman scrutinised the word “assault” as used regarding an accused dead man (his position on the term “assault” in relation to all sexual improprieties is nothing new, there’s a formal reference page about it, and many people agree with him that this term is overused). Guess who got in trouble at MIT. This institution should investigate why Bill Gates paid millions of dollars to Epstein and relayed these to MIT (after he had spent lots of time getting so close to Epstein). Why did he pay? What for? Where’s the elaborate Federal investigation? Where has the Linux Foundation apologised for accepting money from these people? Or from the Pentagon? Nowhere. Because to the Linux Foundation the real problem is the ‘religion’ which is GNU/Linux users, as opposed to Microsoft and Gates. The Linux Foundation worships money, so it shows respect only to those who have money. Remember what the Linux Foundation’s chief said to all of us a decade ago; we need to “respect Microsoft” (even if it helps ICE with illegal detention camps and helps the Army kill innocent people). Just… “respect Microsoft” and not those “nutcases” who question Microsoft’s motives.

Seems awfully probable that the only religion here is shared between the types of Zemlin and Microsoft/Bill Gates. The religion is money. Money and power. As long as Zemlin protects Power that Power will protect him. It's not like he's technically qualified for his role.

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