02.25.21

Links 26/2/2021: Istio 1.7.8 Announced, Blender 2.92, Firebird 3.0 Language Reference, FSF Against Twitter

Posted in News Roundup at 8:36 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • Activate Linux on Your Chromebook

        Chromebooks are popular, relatively inexpensive machines that run Chrome OS and provide all the basic functionality you’d expect from a modern computer. But, writes Seth Kenlon, you can get more out of these machines by simply activating Linux.

      • The Innovation Lab: A Space for Creative Learning

        The reason why we use System76 to power all the computers in the space is because I’m a big supporter of Linux in general, and System76 has been really consistent and helpful. I think the openness of System76 definitely gives the students the ability to experiment and the freedom to break stuff in a creative environment, without being too constrained by proprietary software.

    • Server

      • Announcing Istio 1.7.8

        This release contains bug fixes to improve robustness. This release note describes what’s different between Istio 1.7.7 and Istio 1.7.8

      • Support for Istio 1.7 has ended

        At this point we will no longer back-port fixes for security issues and critical bugs to 1.7, so we heartily encourage you to upgrade to the latest version of Istio (1.9) if you haven’t already.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

    • Kernel Space

      • Google to fund Linux developers to fix kernel security problems

        Linux Foundation will use the developers to work exclusively on security developments

      • Videos and slides of Bootlin presentations at FOSDEM

        The videos from Bootlin’s presentations earlier this month at FOSDEM 2021 are now publicly available. Once again, FOSDEM was a busy event, even if it was online for once. As in most technical conferences, Bootlin engineers volunteered to share their experience and research by giving two talks.

      • Intel’s Simple Firmware Interface Being Killed Off With Linux 5.12 – Phoronix

        Intel’s “Simple Firmware Interface” that dates back to the company’s early Atom-powered mobile days is being eliminated with the in-development Linux 5.12 kernel.

        More than one decade ago with the Intel Moorestown platform, Simple Firmware Interface (SFI) was envisioned as a solution for lightweight devices in place of a complete ACPI implementation. Intel hasn’t employed the Simple Firmware Interface as part of their platform design in years while ACPI is alive and well. Last year Intel engineers marked SFI as “obsolete” within the Linux kernel and confirmed Intel had no plans of resurrecting the Simple Firmware Interface.

      • VFIO Gets Batched Page Pinning For An Easy Performance Improvement With Linux 5.12 – Phoronix

        The VFIO changes to the Linux 5.12 kernel include an optimization worth mentioning.

        The VFIO driver work for Linux 5.12 isn’t too significant but the batched page pinning will be of interest to some. Up to now the VFIO kernel code has relied on pinning one 4K page at a time. That major efficiency bottleneck has been addressed with the batched page pinning to handle batches of 512 at a time.

    • Applications

    • Instructionals/Technical

    • Games

      • ut2004 – players vs (more) bots (than players)

        of course a bit more game physics as with the source2 (half life 2) engine would have been nice… but still… overall one of the best games ever X-D (the internet connection of course needs to be fast and it is best to run dedicated (GNU Linux) server for best performance.

      • Stadia Fallout: Nobody Can Address Stadia Games’ Bugs Because Google Fired All The Developers

        More bad news for Stadia. We were just discussing Google’s decision to axe its own game development studios. In and of itself, such a move to cut staff like this would be a worrying sign for the platform, especially given just how much growing interest there has been in video games and game-streaming surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic. But when it’s instead one more indication that Google isn’t fully committed to its own platform, alongside the poor reception from the public and concerns about whether it can deliver the gaming experience it promised, these things tend to pile up on one another. I have attempted to drive home the point of just how important the development of trust with customers is for Stadia, given that those buying into the platform are gaming entirely at the pleasure of Google’s desire to keep Stadia going.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • New Video by Ramon | Krita

          Ramon Miranda has just finished a new video, this time he’s doing impressionism in Krita! And with that, there’s also a new brush preset bundle for you to download! Click on the image to go to the video on Krita’s channel!

        • Check Your Painting Values with One Krita Shortcut

          New video tutorial: how to set up one Keyboard shortcut to check your painting values in #krita while painting? Here is a short (2min) quick tip to answer this :-)

        • Slimbook Becomes a KDE Patron

          “Since our early days in 2015, we at SLIMBOOK have been trying our best not only to sell GNU/Linux compatible quality hardware, but also to contribute and help those who make Free and Open Source Software.

          Our variety of contributions range from giving support to local groups of developers, the making of forums and tutorials to help the Linux community and sharing a common vision with KDE, to hit the market with a device able to provide the end user with the best out-of-the-box Linux experience available.

          [...]

          We take our duty of supporting the KDE Community full of pride, and we are honored to be KDE Patrons.”

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • GNOME 40 Beta has been Released

          Anyone looking to test the beta for the upcoming GNOME 40 release can now do so.

          On the heels of the alpha release of GNOME 40, the developers have announced the availability of the beta, which includes a number of improvements and bug fixes.

          Of course, the biggest change to GNOME is the new horizontal Activities Overview, which makes for a much-improved workflow on the desktop. With the desktops residing at the top of the Overview, it is now easier to drag and drop an application to the specific desktop you want. It’s far more intuitive and efficient. This new layout also improves usage with touch screen navigation and faster overall performance.

          Another hotly anticipated change comes by way of how multi-monitor support will work with the new horizontal Activities Overview. GNOME 40 will default to only showing workspaces on the primary display, with the top bar and the Activities Overview on both displays.

        • GNOME 40 beta is here — the best Linux desktop environment is getting better

          There are a lot of great desktop environments for Linux, such as Cinnamon, KDE Plasma, and Xfce to name a few. With that said, only one can be the best, and that is GNOME. If you prefer a different environment, you are simply wrong or ignorant on the subject. You know what? That’s fine. As they say, ignorance is bliss, so if you are happy not using GNOME, more power to you.

          For those of us superior Linux users that prefer GNOME, it is time to get excited. You see, the GNOME 40 beta is finally here. Yes, the next version of the desktop environment will be forty thanks to a new confusing naming scheme. This version of the DE is most notable for a series of UI changes, such as a horizontal workspace switcher and the movement of the Dash (favorites launcher) to the bottom of he screen (like the dock on macOS).

        • Molly de Blanc: Friends of GNOME Update – February 2021

          Typically FOSDEM is a big deal for the GNOME Foundation. We have a booth, we give talks, we run hackfests, there is GNOME Beers, and we have lots and lots of meetings. This year FOSDEM was a little different.

          While we didn’t give any talks or run a hackfest, we had a virtual stand. For us, the highlight of this was having scheduled hours in the chat, during which we talked with participants about different GNOME-related topics. It was great to meet people, and it’s always fun to talk about GNOME.

          Our GNOME Beers event was also a lot of fun. Around 40 people joined Neil McGovern for a tour of three different Belgian beers. We learned more about beer than many of us expected to.

          [...]

          We have also announced GUADEC 2021! GUADEC will take place July 21 – 25, also online. GUADEC is the GNOME conference, covering everything GNOME and many general FOSS topics in talks, birds of a feather sessions, and workshops.

          The call for abstracts it open. We’re looking for talks related to FOSS in general as well as GNOME specifically. Past talks I’ve personally enjoyed have been on growing the tech community in Kenya; the environmental impact of tech and what we can do about it; better communication with open, remote collaborative communities; how to have great meetings; and many GNOME specific topics.

    • Distributions

      • Reviews

        • Ubuntu 20.10 review

          We really enjoyed the last Ubuntu release, and indeed the slew of Ubuntu-derivatives (such as Mint and Pop!_OS) that have been rebased on 20.04. We’re still waiting patiently for elementary OS 6 though…

          For those unfamiliar with Ubuntu’s release cycle, this is the first of three interim, short-term release (STR) versions that Canonical and the community will use to shape the next LTS (long-term support) release in 2022. If you’re looking for stability and would rather nothing broke, we’d strongly advise you to stick with the LTS.

        • FossaPup64 9.5 review

          Puppy’s Ubuntu-based release has had a major update and is now based on Ubuntu 20.04 Focal Fossa. This means that FossaPup64 9.5 (which also goes by the much easier nomenclature, Puppy Linux 9.5) is binary compatible with the latest Ubuntu LTS release and can pull applications from its repositories without any issues.

          This release is the fourth official release of an Ubuntu-based 64-bit Puppy. Like all Puppy distros, FossaPup64 is built using the Woof-CE build system that’s designed to assemble Puppy variants from the binary packages of any other distro.

          A key feature of the official Puppy releases is that they’re modular. You can easily swap out components including the kernel and various programs to create a streamlined Puppy.

        • Trisquel 9.0 review

          The world is full of people shouting and clamoring for the latest thing (and the last review pages because we go to press today – Ed). So it’s always reassuring to discover places where things still move slowly.

          Nowhere is this more true than Trisquel, the freedom (as in speechdom)-loving, Ubuntu-based distro endorsed by the Free Software Foundation.

          Trisquel used to push out one release a year (based on the corresponding Ubuntu LTS release), but it’s been over 18 months since the previous release. And that one took over three years to come into fruition. This new release is based on Ubuntu 18.04, the second-to-last LTS release, which is supported until 2023.

          [...]

          With this release Trisquel moves from Xfce to the MATE desktop, so if you long for those Gnome 2 vibes then this might be for you. ISOs are getting bigger and Trisquel’s weighs in at 2.6GB. A 1.2GB mini-image is available that runs LXDE – ideal for older machines.

          There’s also Triskel, a KDE spin, and Trisquel Sugar Toast which is an educational release. Oh and there’s a tiny Net Install image too if you want to build a minimal but freedom-loving OS from the ground up.

      • SUSE/OpenSUSE

        • Public Cloud Image Change Information

          With the last push of our Public Cloud images we also enabled the publishing of image change information. We’ve had numerous requests to make change data available when images get published and we are happy to share that this data is now available.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • Red Hat Refines Kubernetes for Both Traditional and Cloud-Native Applications with Latest Version of Red Hat OpenShift

          Red Hat, Inc., the world’s leading provider of open source solutions, today announced Red Hat OpenShift 4.7, the latest version of the industry’s leading enterprise Kubernetes platform. Designed to simplify and accelerate application modernization, the latest version of Red Hat OpenShift is based on Kubernetes 1.20 and helps remove the strain on IT teams as they seek to unite traditional applications with cloud-native. All of these new capabilities are built on the consistent platform that Red Hat OpenShift provides across the open hybrid cloud.

        • Contribute at the Fedora Audio, Kernel 5.11 and i18n test days

          Fedora test days are events where anyone can help make sure changes in Fedora work well in an upcoming release. Fedora community members often participate, and the public is welcome at these events. If you’ve never contributed to Fedora before, this is a perfect way to get started.

        • Red Hat opens the door for both VMs and containers in its latest OpenShift release | ZDNet

          Kubernetes is great for managing containers. But, as popular as containers are, we’re still running a lot of applications on virtual machines (VM). Wouldn’t it be nice if you could use Kubernetes to orchestrate both your containers and VMs? Red Hat certainly thinks so, and with the release of Red Hat OpenShift 4.7, you can use their Kubernetes distribution to manage both your older mission-critical and newer cloud-native applications.

        • QElectroTech version 0.80 – Remi’s RPM repository – Blog

          RPM of QElectroTech version 0.80, an application to design electric diagrams, are available in remi for Fedora and Enterprise Linux ≥ 8.

          A bit more than 1 year after the version 0.70 release, the project have just released a new major version of their electric diagrams editor.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Snapcraft Clinic

          At work we have a forum where developers can discuss packaging Linux applications, specifically as snaps. Sometimes developers just want to pair through a problem to get it either resolved for themselves, or for whatever is blocking to be handed off to the right people.

          One strategy for supporting developers we found effective was via regular live video conference. So last year we started the Snapcraft Clinic. On a semi-regular basis we dedicate time to join with anyone who has technical issues with snapping, to help them.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Web Browsers

        • Brave web browser 1.17.3 review

          Nobody likes ads, but they’re unfortunately central to today’s revenue models, so we’d rather see ones that directly fund creators and projects rather than horrible advertising networks.

          Brave uses its own Privacy-Preserving Product Analytics (P3A) to target ads and avoid the tracking associated with other services. Brave’s ad network returns 70 per cent of its revenue to users, so this is anything but a money grab. It seems a little cheeky to block a webpage’s own ads only to run your own, but we like cheeky.

          We found casual browsing to be snappy with Brave and struggled to find any site (that’s worth your time) that required the adblocker to be disabled. Even our sister site and ad haven TechRadar didn’t bat (no pun intended) an eyelid.

          The ad-blocking engine is written in Rust and hardware acceleration is enabled by default. If you browse to brave://gpu you can see what features are enabled.

          We were pleased to see that installing Brave on our Pop-powered Dell XPS 13 gave us WebGL2 rendering out of the box. To get accelerated video decoding to work we had to enable an experimental flag, but then it worked just fine.

      • SaaS/Back End/Databases

        • Mariuz’s Blog: Firebird 3.0 Language Reference (English) Released

          The Firebird Documentation Team is proud to announce the first release of the English Firebird 3.0 Language Reference (HTML, PDF). You can also find it on the Documentation page. This new Language Reference covers all SQL syntax of Firebird 3.0.

          The new English Firebird 3.0 Language Reference is based in part on the Russian Firebird 3.0 Language Reference, but is not a direct translation (though we thankfully copied parts of it). Work has also been started on the Firebird 4.0 Language Reference.

      • FSF

        • New changes to Twitter make it even worse for free software users

          There are many complicated debates happening right now around Twitter and its role in public discourse. These discussions are important, but we also shouldn’t forget a very basic and clear principle — whatever its policies are about who can and can’t post or how, it’s of fundamental importance that Twitter should not require users to run nonfree software in order to use the site.

          Unfortunately, on December 15th, Twitter removed its “legacy” Web interface. As opposed to its much larger and more complex default Web client, the legacy interface did not use proprietary JavaScript (or any JavaScript).

          Previously, the Free Software Foundation (FSF) could tolerate the use of Twitter because of this legacy interface. While it was active, we referred free software advocates to it, or to third-party free software applications. Twitter’s removing access to this interface means that users are forced to use the site’s nonfree JavaScript if they don’t have a dedicated desktop or mobile client, preventing freedom-respecting browsers like GNU IceCat from posting to the service.

          But why use Twitter in the first place, if we know that it has these issues? As any charity can attest, engaging users on social media is one of the chief ways of getting their message across. The same is true for software freedom. We need to be talking about free software in places where everyone is not already a committed free software supporter — we won’t be successful if we are only in our own echo chamber, or preaching to the choir. It’s important for us as activists to be reaching the people on these platforms, even if we have some reservations about using them ourselves. Twitter has its share of issues, but until we’re able to drive enough users to the software freedom movement to where we can rely solely on word of mouth, we need to include them in our messaging strategy. We are, however, careful to make sure that you don’t have to follow the FSF on Twitter in order to receive news or updates. Everything we publish is also posted on platforms based on free software principles, including Mastodon and GNU social.

      • Programming/Development

        • Delete The Code

          For a long time, I’ve tried very, very, very, very hard to work around problems with NIR variables when it comes to UBOs and SSBOs.

          Really, I have.

          But the bottom line is that, at least for gallium-based drivers, they’re unusable. They’re so unreliable that it’s only by sheer luck (and a considerable amount of it) that zink has worked at all until this point.

        • Perl/Raku

          • Custom when | Playing Perl 6 b6xA Raku

            I didn’t quite like the syntax of using match in the last post. The commas in the list of its arguments looked strangely out of place. Maybe because my eyes are used to a given block. Sleeping over it helped.

  • Leftovers

    • Compartmentalizing Woody Allen … or Not
    • Health/Nutrition

      • Opinion | Mexico’s Decision to Ban Glyphosate Has Rocked the Agribusiness World

        GM corn presidential decree comes despite intense pressure from industry, U.S. authorities.

      • ‘Join This Struggle,’ Says Healthcare Activist Ady Barkan After Santa Barbara Approves Medicare for All Resolution

        “The pandemic has made it painfully clear that the status quo is unacceptable,” said another campaigner after a local community vote that speaks to a national trend.

      • Cuomo’s Cover-up Will be Most Effectively Weaponized by the Right

        The revelation was fairly shocking, but hardly out of character. Cuomo’s mishandling of the pandemic—coupled with a particularly personal brand of megalomaniacal arrogance—has been plenty obvious for some time. The specific issue of nursing home deaths has been a persistent note in this mismanagement. A rule adopted early in the crisis, forcing nursing homes to re-admit convalescing COVID-19 patients, was blamed, at least in part, for the rampant early spread of the coronavirus through New York State nursing homes. (As David Sirota pointed out, the rule coincided neatly with a corporate immunity provision in the state budget that protected the heavily Cuomo-donating healthcare industry from COVID-related lawsuits.)

        For months afterward, the state refused to release a definitive total of individuals who had died in nursing homes. The administration was forced to address this about three weeks ago, when a report by New York Attorney General Letitia James estimated that the official count of nursing home fatalities may have been only 50% of the actual total. The official death toll has since been progressively revised upwards, and now stands around 15,000 deaths.

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Pseudo-Open Source

        • Security

          • The Top Free Tools for Sysadmins in 2021

            It’s no secret that sysadmins have plenty on their plates. Managing, troubleshooting, and updating software or hardware is a tedious task. Additionally, admins must grapple with complex webs of permissions and security. This can quickly become overwhelming without the right tools.

            If you’re a sysadmin seeking to simplify your workflows, you’re in luck. We’ve gathered some excellent software picks to help tackle different duties more efficiently.

            Thankfully, these free tools are also respectful of tight budgets—without sacrificing core functionality.

          • Configuration Security for Remote Endpoints with CIS-CAT Pro | CSO Online

            Configuration management can be challenging. IT teams can become overwhelmed between various standards, compliance requirements, and security options. As the popularity of remote work grows, so does the complexity of implementing secure configurations. Thankfully, there are consensus-developed security recommendations and tools available to help automate the process.

          • Privacy/Surveillance

    • Transparency/Investigative Reporting

    • Environment

    • Finance

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • Content Moderation Case Study: Chatroulette Leverages New AI To Combat Unwanted Nudity (2020)

        Summary: Chatroulette rose to fame shortly after its creation in late 2009. The platform offered a new take on video chat, pairing users with other random users with each spin of the virtual wheel.

      • Yet Another Story Shows How Facebook Bent Over Backwards To Put In Place Different Rules For Conservatives

        It has become an article of faith among some that the big social media sites engage in “anti-conservative bias” in their moderation practices. When we point out, over and over again, that there is no evidence to support these claims, our comments normally fill up with very, very angry people calling us “delusional” and saying things like “just look around!” But they never actually provide any evidence. Because it doesn’t seem to exist. Instead, what multiple looks at the issue have found is that moderation policies might ban racists, trolls, and bigots, and unless your argument is that “conservatism” is the same thing as “racism, trolling, and bigotry” then you don’t have much of an argument. In fact, studies seem to show that Facebook, in particular, has bent over backwards to support conservative voices on the platform.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • ‘The judge hears all of it’ How Russian police officers use compromised witnesses to frame innocent people — and keep getting away with it

        Reporters from iStories and Meduza examined Moscow court documents and found more than 140 “professional witnesses” — people who regularly testify in court cases related to drug charges. The practice is blatantly illegal, but judges send people to prison for years based on these witnesses’ testimonies.

      • Harriet Tubman, Abolitionist
      • A Poisonous Legacy

        In the middle of 1856, the soon-to-be-celebrated poet Walt Whitman visited an impounded slave ship in Brooklyn. The taking of the ship was an unusual occurrence, as it was one of the few illegal slavers seized by an otherwise lethargic Washington, D.C., and Whitman wanted to give his readers a tour of the vessel, which had been designed to add even more enslaved laborers to the millions already ensnared in this system of iniquity, including of its hold, where those victimized were to be “laid together spoon-fashion.”

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

      • The DOJ/FCC ‘Fix’ For The T-Mobile Merger Is Looking More And More Like Theater

        Economists repeatedly warned that the biggest downside of the $26 billion Sprint T-Mobile merger was the fact that the deal would dramatically reduce overall competition in the U.S. wireless space by eliminating Sprint. Data from around the globe clearly shows that the elimination of one of just four major competitors sooner or later results in layoffs and higher prices due to less competition. It’s not debatable. Given U.S. consumers already pay some of the highest prices for mobile data in the developed world, most objective experts recommended that the deal be blocked.

      • California Poised To Defeat Broadband Industry In Scrum Over Net Neutrality

        You’ll recall that after the Trump FCC effectively neutered itself at telecom lobbyist behest in 2017, numerous states jumped in to fill the consumer protection void. Most notable among them being California, which in 2018 passed some net neutrality rules that largely mirrored the FCC’s discarded consumer protections. Laughing at the concept of state rights, Bill Barr’s DOJ immediately got to work protecting U.S. telecom monopolies and filed suit in a bid to vacate the rules, claiming they were “radical” and “illegal” (they were neither).

      • Confronting the Digital Divide: New York City vs. Verizon

        The digital divide has been compounded by the twin crises of the Covid-19 pandemic and the ongoing economic recession. Its effects are graphically evident in New York City along with other large urban centers.

        In April 2020, as the first wave of the pandemic spread through the country, the Citizens’ Committee for Children of New York (CCC) reported that an estimated 500,000 – of the 3.3 million – city households lacked internet access. It estimated that more than 800,000 New Yorkers lived in households without internet access, including over 150,000 school-age kids of the city 1.1 million students. Bronx County is a 42.4 square mile (110 sq km) area and home to 1.4 million people, many among the poorest of the city’s five boroughs. Over the last few years, it witnessed a 10 Mbps (i.e., megabits per second) drop in broadband speeds.

    • Monopolies

      • Webinar Materials – 5G RAN Economics and Licensing

        During our webinar, we discussed 5G RAN characteristics and the market forces and economics of Open RAN. We highlighted several other areas like vRAN and C-RAN, and spoke on how each of the new technologies have changed the licensing landscape.

        Thank you to Craig and John for leading a great discussion!

      • Patents

        • FOSS Patents: Automotive industry falls into political trap, allows patent reform opponents to portray concerns over injunctions as single-industry issue: German parliament hearing

          The short version of what happened at yesterday’s patent reform hearing in the German Bundestag (Federal Parliament) is that the positions taken by the seven panelists were materially consistent with how I had summed them up in advance, but the overall perception was even worse for the cause of patent injunction reform.

          The video recording of the two-hour meeting of the Legal Affairs Committee became available today. If those seeking to preserve the status quo had scripted the hearing, it wouldn’t have been less balanced.

          The lone voice–among seven “experts” (which in a U.S. Congressional hearing would be sworn in and called “witnesses”)–in favor of a proportionality defense to injunction claims was, as expected, the VDA (German automotive industry association). That fact alone supported the anti-reform camp’s narrative, but politicians and co-panelists alike capitalized on the situation and reinforced their portrayal of proportionality as the cause of the German automotive industry plus a bunch of foreign infringers.

          [...]

          I’m already looking past that reform bill (while still keeping an eye on the process) and profoundly concerned that Nokia and Ericsson may win the pan-European lobbying battle over component-level SEP licensing. In the worst case, the CJEU will even lower the bar for preliminary injunctions (over any category of patents, ultimately also SEPs). But for now I still hope that those who botched the patent reform effort will learn from their mistakes and do better next time. “Next time” is now.

        • US Infringement for Failure to Monitor Seat License Fees

          Bitmanagement distributes graphics-rendering software that the US Navy makes available to computers connected to the Navy Marine Corps Intranet. The Navy purchased these copies, but did not pay the full seat license fees for system-wide use. As part of the discussion between the parties, the Navy was supposed to (but did not) use licensing-tracking software (“Flexera”) to monitor and limit the number of simultaneous users of its system. After learning of that failure, Bitmanagement registered its copyright and then sued for copyright infringement.

          [...]

          Suing on Copyright vs. Contract: The Navy admitted that it did not fully live up to the implied agreement — it did not track/limit usage. On that point, the Navy suggested that potential breach should be pursued via a breach-of-contract claim, not a copyright claim. This is a convenient argument for the Navy because Bitmanagment did not allege breach of contract.

          On appeal, the Federal Circuit sided with the copyright holder and found that the Navy’s failure to track/limit usage created an infringement claim. The line on this is fairly thin — the Federal Circuit makes a distinction between breaches of (a) “a condition that limits the scope” or instead is (b) “merely a covenant.” Slip Op. There is no infringement claim if the licensee breaches a mere covenant, but there will be a copyright claim that arises from breach of a condition. The court went on to explain that terms of a license “are presumed to be covenants, rather than conditions, unless it is clear that a condition precedent was intended.” Thus, “[n]ormally, a copyright owner who grants a license to his copyrighted material has waived his right to sue the licensee for copyright infringement and must instead pursue a claim for breach of contract.”

          On appeal here, the court found that the use of Flexera to limit/monitor usage was a condition that induced Bitmanagment to enter the contract. The CFC did not reach the condition/covenant question, but did expressly conclude that Bitmanagment entered the contract “because Flexera would limit the number of simultaneous users … regardless of how many copies were installed on Navy computers.” On appeal, the Federal Circuit found this implied clause “critical to the basic functioning of the deal.”

        • Paris Court of Appeal applies CJEU case law in three SPC judgments [Ed: Laws for and by large and monopolistic pharmaceutical companies that crush generics and access to medicine]

          In France, the Court of Appeal has applied CJEU case law in three landmark rulings on Supplementary Protection Certificates (SPCs). At the centre of the disputes are patents for three monoclonal antibodies osimertinib, nivolumab and pembrolizumab. Doctors use drugs with these antibodies in immunotherapy against different types of cancer.

          Two SPCs for one antibody

          Usually, for new therapies using monoclonal antibodies, parties file patent families that first protect a function. For example, this could be a function which changes the communication between tumour cells and T lymphocytes.

          Only after further research are specific monoclonal antibodies that fulfil desired functions determined. However, this can take several years, after which parties usually file patents for these isolated antibodies.

          In the current cases, all parties which hold the patents protecting the respective functions filed applications for an SPC at the French Trademark and Patent Office (INPI). In doing so, the parties referred to the already-granted patents for the specific monoclonal antibodies, as well as market approval for the corresponding drugs.

          [...]

          As such, in 2016, Wyeth and General Hospital Corporation applied to the INPI for an SPC for the French part of EP 1 848 414. The patent protects a method for treating gefitinib-resistant cancer. In applying for the SPC, the parties drew on the market approval of AstraZeneca’s drug Tagrisse. Its active ingredient is osimertinib, a monoclonal antibody, which in turn is protected by the patent EP 2 736 895.

          Ono Pharmaceuticals also applied for an SPC for the French part of EP 1 537 878. University of Kyoto professor and Nobel Prize for Medicine winner Tasuku Honjo co-owns the patent, which protects immunopotentiating compositions. Here, Ono referred to the market approval of Bristol Meyer Squibb’s drug Opdivo.

          The active ingredient in Opdivo is monoclonal antibody nivolumab, with a corresponding patent of EP 2 161 336. However, an SPC already exists for the drug in France.

          The patent for a third monoclonal antibody, pembrolizumab, has a similar story. Ono Pharmaceuticals and Tasuku Honjo also applied for an SPC for the antibody’s function patent. Their argument is based on MSD’s drug Keytruda and the existing patent for antibody pembrolizumab, which is Keytruda’s active ingredient.

        • Lawyers: Indian tribunal closure hit-or-miss for courts [Ed: How about asking ordinary people in India instead of parasites like lawyers (who sponsor this site for propaganda)?]

          Plans to shut India’s IP Appellate Board could open speedier avenues for litigants, but courts could become overloaded and patent owners may suffer

        • Opinion | By Putting Big Pharma’s Patents Before Patients, Doctors Will Further Erode Trust in Experts

          Doctors have largely been trained into complicity with a medical money machine.

        • Software Patents

          • KOL321 | The Pending Patent Problem with The Open Crypto Alliance – The Tatiana Show Ep. 296

            This is my appearance The Tatiana Show, episode 296, with host Tatiana Moroz, in which Jed Grant and I discussed the looming patent threat to bitcoin. Jed is Founder of the Open Crypto Alliance, for which I serve on the Advisory Board.

          • $5,000 for WSOU ’715 prior art

            The ‘715 patent generally relates to an impersonation attack detection system for a wireless node of a wireless communication network. Specifically, Unified seeks art on the method that operatively connects the wireless node with an intrusion detection module, provides the intrusion detection module with a copy of the original data frames transmitted by the wireless node over a wireless interface, and then compares information in the copy with information in incoming data frames at the intrusion detection module. During prosecution, the patent examiner allowed the claims of the ’715 patent over U.S. Patent 6,745,333 based on these features. The ‘715 patent is currently being asserted against Arista Networks in the Western District of Texas.

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