IBM: We Can Say It… You Cannot

Posted in Deception, IBM at 10:23 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Related: IBM Fought for ‘Master Race’ and Now It’s Banning the Word ‘Master’ | IBM: The Word “Master” is Rude (Except When We Use It Ourselves)

IBM Masters

Summary: Blog posts such as this new one help show the hypocrisy or the double standards of IBM, looking to control speech while attacking people's (software) freedom/civil liberties and profiting from atomic bombs

The Collapse of Microsoft Windows

Posted in GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Windows at 10:10 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Linux is everywhere, sometimes with GNU, whereas racist Microsoft is gradually going away despite corporate bailouts

Windows at an all-time low
Windows at an all-time low, as plotted hours ago (Android is in amber, with market share of almost 42%)

Summary: Although the corporate media keeps insisting that Microsoft is doing well, government (or military) bailouts keep the company afloat while its desperate attempts to remain relevant (as the common carrier languishes) merit a debate

THE corporate media is at this very moment helping Microsoft attack Java as it did before. Well, .NET was a complete and utter failure in spite of all the openwashing and IBM/Red Hat tried propping up C# earlier this week (whilst attacking the FSF and its founder), which says a lot about IBM…

“The future is Free software and many nefarious attacks on Free software. Why? Because it’s the market leader.”In any event, a quick look at StatCounter reminded me of the trend; every now and then Microsoft offers ‘free’ giveaways of Vista 10, perhaps knowing (based on telemetry surveillance) how bad things really are for Windows…

GNU/Linux is a growing force. Sure, they’ll try to limit users’ freedom on it (Snaps, Flakpak, systemd, Chrome OS and so on), but vocal users will fight back and demand freedom. The future is Free software and many nefarious attacks on Free software. Why? Because it’s the market leader. Even Android is Free/libre at its very core (the kernel) and the whole API issue seems like a thing of the past. It’s based on Java. Microsoft could never kill Java or take control of it; but it keeps trying.

Links 8/4/2021: Mesa 21.0.2, GNU Releases, and Stable Kernels

Posted in News Roundup at 9:18 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Server

      • How a growing ecosystem of 90+ partners creates opportunities for clients with IBM Cloud for Financial Services [Ed: IBM now calls everything "cloud" to make sales, even if all these people mean to say is servers or cluster or datacenter. Buzzwords-as-a-disservice.]

        In 2019, we introduced an industry-first platform called the IBM Cloud for Financial Services to help financial institutions host mission-critical workloads with confidence while adhering to stringent security and compliance regulations. Today marks an exciting milestone for IBM. The IBM Cloud for Financial Services, now supporting Red Hat OpenShift and other cloud-native services, is generally available and backed by EY, Tata Consultancy Services, and a growing ecosystem of more than 90 independent software vendors (ISVs) and software-as-a-service (SaaS) providers.


        For ISVs, onboarding solutions to the IBM Cloud for Financial Services offers a highly-secure environment to transact. WorkFusion, an automation software provider powered by artificial intelligence (AI) and advanced analytics, is adopting the IBM Cloud for Financial Services to help ensure its tools support the highest regulatory and compliance standards.

        After completing a series of onboarding workshops to assess product architecture, security posture, remediation plans, and other mission-critical initiatives, WorkFusion onboarded its application and intends to migrate client workloads to the IBM Cloud for Financial Services. By beginning this process, our partner can help its clients automate operations to help upskill employees and unlock growth while adhering to the disclosure, approval, and audit requirements necessary for the financial industry. The cloud framework offers controls, operations guidance, risk management, and a common set of security criteria to guide them and our other ecosystem partners on their path to validation. This path to validation offers a clear roadmap to help financial institutions onboard efficiently and is designed to reduce the cost of client acquisition due to the decrease in third- and fourth-party risk, and cost reduction around acquisition can be a vital piece in accelerating growth in a highly-regulated environment.

      • ‘Kubernetes is the next Linux’: SUSE’s Rob Knight on containerisation [Ed: GNU/Linux is largely commoditised, so now they try selling our superficial (and often unnecessary) complexity on top of it; just dish out some buzzwords on top of it to justify/rationalise it]

        SUSE chief technology officer for enterprise cloud products Rob Knight believes Kubernetes technology is such a big deal that it could be considered “the next Linux”.

        Speaking to Daniel Robus on the TechCentral podcast (watch or listen to it below), Knight provides an informative dive into the world of containerisation and mass digitisation, and the management thereof.

      • Equinix’ Tinkerbell is a bare metal provisioning pixie

        Equinix announced that Tinkerbell, an open source bare metal provisioning platform that the company released last year, has accumulated new features since being placed in the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF) Sandbox program.

        The microservices platform is designed to help companies transform their physical edge network hardware into programmable infrastructure, the company said. It has been generally available in open source form since May 2020, but Tinkerbell was placed in the CNCF Sandbox in November 2020.

      • Tinkerbell, An Equinix Open Source Project, Features Improved Capabilities

        As a CNCF project sponsored by Equinix, Tinkerbell has also gained ecosystem adoption among cloud native digital leaders for its ability to empower developers to deploy and manage infrastructure across private, hybrid and edge environments.

      • Bare Metal Provisioning Platform Tinkerbell Gets New Features
    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • Steam test. New PC. Pay no attention to that man behind the screen.
      • Request Timeout | Coder Radio 408

        After a decade long fight, no one feels like a winner.

        Plus, the tail of an embarrassing switch gone wrong, and our thoughts on Oracle vs. Google finally coming to an end.

      • Native OBS Support Finally Coming To Wayland

        Without OBS I would not be able to make videos like this and native OBS support is finally coming to Wayland, while running Wayland wasn’t a big deal Wayland doesn’t have a capture API so it’s been a pretty useless program until fairly recently.

      • Going Linux #406 · Pinebook Pro Reviews

        Our listeners are FANTASTIC! We mentioned in our episode related to hardware designed to run Linux that neither of us has had any experience with the Pinebook Pro. We ask for feedback from any listeners who have used the Pinebook Pro. So they wrote reviews. Here they are. Thanks to Tim and Stacey for all the work they put into these reviews.

      • FLOSS Weekly 624: Open Mainframe Project – John Mertic

        John Mertic of the Linux Foundation joins Doc Searls and Aaron Newcomb of FLOSS Weekly. The Linux Foundation only gets bigger, more interesting and more important for the FLOSS world. There’s nobody better to talk to about all of it than Mertic, Director of Program Management for this “foundation of foundations.” In a conversation that ranges both deep and wide, and is packed with interesting details regarding the Open Mainframe Project, Linux Foundation and even COBOL developers.

    • Kernel Space

      • Linux 5.11.12

        I’m announcing the release of the 5.11.12 kernel.

        All users of the 5.11 kernel series must upgrade.

        The updated 5.11.y git tree can be found at:
        git://git.kernel.org/pub/scm/linux/kernel/git/stable/linux-stable.git linux-5.11.y
        and can be browsed at the normal kernel.org git web browser:



        greg k-h

      • Linux 5.10.28
      • Linux 5.4.110
      • Linux 4.19.185
      • Linux 4.14.229
      • Linux 4.9.265
      • Linux 4.4.265
      • OpenZFS 2.1.0-rc2 Released With Bug Fixes – Phoronix

        At the end of March the release candidate phase began for the upcoming OpenZFS 2.1 open-source ZFS file-system on Linux and FreeBSD systems. The second release candidate is now available for this noteworthy OpenZFS update.

        Headlining OpenZFS 2.1 is distributed spare RAID (dRAID) functionality. OpenZFS 2.1 is also introducing a new “compatibility” property for Zpool feature sets, a zpool_influxdb command was added, and a variety of other changes.

      • VirtIO Bluetooth Driver On The Way To The Linux Kernel – Phoronix

        Queued up within Bluetooth-Next as of yesterday and in advance of the upcoming Linux 5.13 merge window is a VirtIO transport driver. This “virtio_bt” driver allows for Bluetooth HCI transport over VirtIO. This VirtIO addition was led by Intel engineers.

      • Graphics Stack

        • AMDVLK 2021.Q2.1 Finally Adds Navi 12 Support – Phoronix

          Most notable with AMDVLK 2021.Q2.1 is now officially supporting the Navi 12 SKU. Navi 12 so far is just found with the Radeon Pro 5600M for the Apple MacBook Pro 16 as well as the AMD Radeon Pro V520. But now these months later, Navi 12 support has finally worked its way into AMDVLK. Given the timing it does make us wonder if AMD is potentially set to introduce new Navi 12 SKUs soon. There was the recently-reported VCN-less, seemingly crypto/mining focused Navi 12 GPU device ID added to the kernel. Perhaps this AMDVLK support is coming for that for Vulkan compute workloads? Time will tell, but in any case the Navi 12 support is finally added to the open-source AMDVLK driver for Linux.

        • Mesa 21.1′s Lavapipe Now Teases Vulkan 1.1 On CPUs

          Lavapipe with Mesa 21.1-devel is now advertising Vulkan 1.1 rather than Vulkan 1.0. But the big caveat is this CPU-based Vulkan driver is not yet a fully conformant Vulkan implementation. Lavapipe is still missing some bits needed to completely pass Vulkan 1.0 conformance tests. But what has changed is Lavapipe now supporting the delta to get to Vulkan 1.1, per the note by David Airlie.

        • Dave Airlie: lavapipe reporting Vulkan 1.1 (not compliant)

          The lavapipe vulkan software rasterizer in Mesa is now reporting Vulkan 1.1 support.

          It passes all CTS tests for those new features in 1.1 but it stills fails all the same 1.0 tests so isn’t that close to conformant. (lines/point rendering are the main areas of issue).

        • mesa 21.0.2
          Hi list,
          It's that time again, Mesa 21.0.2 is now available for general
          consumption. This release is the culmination of two weeks of hard work
          from the community. There's lots of good fixes here for basically
          everything in the tree from the compilers, to radv, utils, r600, intel,
          lavapipe, egl, aco, st/mesa, and panfrost.
        • Mesa 21.0.2 Released With Lavapipe Fixes, Improved AMD L3 Cache Calculation

          Mesa 21.0.2 is out today as the latest bi-weekly point release to the Mesa3D open-source Vulkan/OpenGL drivers.

          Accumulating for Mesa 21.0.2 is the usual random smothering of fixes but with no area dominating the change-log this time around. Mesa 21.0.2 has just a few fixes for the likes of the Radeon and Intel drivers but nothing too exciting there. The other changes include several Lavapipe Vulkan CPU driver fixes, disabling of sparse buffers on GFX7/GFX8 for RadeonSi, Mesa state tracker fixes, and a few EGL fixes too.

        • Sparse – Mike Blumenkrantz – Super. Good. Code.

          The great thing about tomorrow is that it never comes.

          Let’s talk about sparse buffers.

          What is a sparse buffer? A sparse buffer is a buffer that is not required to be contiguously or fully backed. This means that a buffer larger than the GPU’s available memory can be created, and only some parts of it are utilized at any given time. Because of the non-resident nature of the backing memory, they can never be mapped, instead needing to go through a staging buffer for any host read/write.

          In a gallium-based driver, provided that an effective implementation for staging buffers exists, sparse buffer implementation goes almost exclusively through the pipe_context::resource_commit hook, which manages residency of a sparse resource’s backing memory, passing a range to change residency for and an on/off switch.

        • Wayland Is Driving Fragmentation Around EDID Parsing – A Call To Fix That – Phoronix

          In the open-source world there can even be much fragmentation and multiple implementations around something as central as parsing of EDID blobs for monitor (display) information and that’s only been made worse by the growing number of Wayland compositors.

          Currently there is no de facto EDID parsing library for Linux but many different choices and most Wayland compositors rolling their own. The Extended Display Identification Data (EDID) is exposed by the kernel to user-space for offering various metadata around the display. This offers much more information in the standardized structure than what the kernel otherwise normally exposes to user-space and is becoming more important for advanced features like high dynamic range (HDR) and advanced color features that are relevant to compositors and other user-space software. (Heck even to reliably query the monitor(s) model string under Linux for the Phoronix Test Suite for years has meant just parsing the EDID information via sysfs.)

        • Sway 1.6 Wayland Compositor Released With Smoother Move/Resize

          Sway 1.6 is official today as the newest version of this i3-inspired Wayland compositor.

          Sway 1.6 ships with more than 200 changes from 69 contributors, providing a number of new features as well as many bug fixes.

    • Benchmarks

      • AVX / AVX2 / AVX-512 Performance + Power On Intel Rocket Lake

        Here is a look at the AVX / AVX2 / AVX-512 performance on the Intel Core i9 11900K “Rocket Lake” when building a set of relevant open-source benchmarks limited to AVX, AVX2, and AVX-512 caps each time while also monitoring the CPU package power consumption during the tests for looking at the performance-per-Watt in providing some fresh reference metrics over AVX-512 on Linux with the latest Intel “Rocket Lake” processors.

    • Applications

      • Best Password Managers For Linux

        Password managers for Linux help a lot in protecting your passwords and create strong passwords. The reason why I don’t use built-in password managers is because I do not want to stick with one browser. Your web browser play an important role in your online security and privacy. Whereas most of the web browsers are either based on Firefox or Chromium.

        I prefer web browsers that provide the same security with additional protection for my privacy. I use Brave web browser, a privacy-focused web browser.

        Using a third-party password manager allowed me to easily transfer from Chrome to Brave. The password manager I use is LastPass. It keeps track of my vault health, provide basics features free of cost such as unlimited passwords.

        The other password manager that I have used for a long time is KeePassXC. It is a free, open-source password manager but it lacks an official client for Android and iPhone.

      • Cockpit Project: Unified upstream and downstream testing with tmt and Packit

        Automated package update gating can tremendously increase the quality of a Linux distribution. (Gated packages are only accepted into a distribution when tests pass.)

        Two and a half years ago, we started to gate the Fedora cockpit package on our browser integration tests. We have continued to increase the number of tests ever since.

        I’m especially happy gating is now in Fedora, as I had worked on testing in Ubuntu and Debian many years ago. (Adoption is a bit slower in Fedora, as it does not do reverse dependency gating yet.)

      • XScreenSaver 6.0 Is Released With User-Configurable Color Schemes For The Unlock-Box

        XScreenSaver, initially released by Jamie Zawinski in 1992, is one of the oldest pieces of free software still around. The Linux kernel is just one year older. The latest version has better scaling for higher screen resolutions, even better security, user-configurable color schemes for the unlock dialog box and a special fix for the Rasperry Pi and other systems without gamma control.


        XScreenSaver is a screensaver that works well with Xfce, LXQt, IceWM, Openbox, Fluxbox and many other X window managers as well. It offers a really long list of screensavers you can use as an alternative to the dull “lock-screens” offered by many of the “modern” alternatives. There is a reason why the xfce4 screensaver looks so utterly dull and boring: The developer argued that screensavers shouldn’t do anything beyond locking the screen because it wastes GPU cycles and electricity when we asked a while back.

        XScreenSaver allows you to lock your screen with a plain black no-fuzz no-effects lockscreen if that is what you want. You can, alternatively, pick and choose between a very long list of screensavers with all kinds of entertaining effects and animations. You can use just one screensaver you like, or randomize a few you like (Some Random Savers), or choose Random Screen Saver to cycle between all the screensavers XScreenSaver has to offer.

      • ejabberd 21.04

        The new ejabberd 21.04 release includes many bugfixes and a few improvements. This release includes minor improvements to fully support Erlang/OTP 24 and Rebar3. At the same time, it maintains support back to the old Erlang/OTP 19.3 and Rebar2.

      • steps to release curl

        I have a lot of different hats and roles in the curl project. One of them is “release manager” and in this post I’ve tried to write down pretty much all the steps I do to prepare and ship a curl release at the end of every release cycle in the project.

        I’ve handled every curl release so far. All 198 of them. While the process certainly wasn’t this formal or extensive in the beginning, we’ve established a set of steps that have worked fine for us, that have been mostly unchanged for maybe ten years by now.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • Install MetalLB and Istio Ingress Gateway with Mutual TLS for Kubernetes

        Configuring encryption between Kubernetes pods with Istio and mTLS.

      • Adam Young: Querying hostnames from beaker

        If you have requested a single host from beaker, the following one liner will tell the hostname for it.

      • How to install Mine-imator on a Chromebook with Crossover 20

        Today we are looking at how to install Mine-imator on a Chromebook with Crossover 20. Please follow the video/audio guide as a tutorial where we explain the process step by step and use the commands below.

      • Using network bound disk encryption with Stratis

        In an environment with many encrypted disks, unlocking them all is a difficult task. Network bound disk encryption (NBDE) helps automate the process of unlocking Stratis volumes. This is a critical requirement in large environments. Stratis version 2.1 added support for encryption, which was introduced in the article “Getting started with Stratis encryption.” Stratis version 2.3 recently introduced support for Network Bound Disk Encryption (NBDE) when using encrypted Stratis pools, which is the topic of this article.


        One of the main challenges of encrypting storage is having a secure method to unlock the storage again after a system reboot. In large environments, typing in the encryption passphrase manually doesn’t scale well. NBDE addresses this and allows for encrypted storage to be unlocked in an automated manner.

        At a high level, NBDE requires a Tang server in the environment. Client systems (using Clevis Pin) can automatically decrypt storage as long as they can establish a network connection to the Tang server. If there is no network connectivity to the Tang server, the storage would have to be decrypted manually.

        The idea behind this is that the Tang server would only be available on an internal network, thus if the encrypted device is lost or stolen, it would no longer have access to the internal network to connect to the Tang server, therefore would not be automatically decrypted.

        For more information on Tang and Clevis, see the man pages (man tang, man clevis) , the Tang GitHub page, and the Clevis GitHub page.

      • How to Install SuiteCRM on Ubuntu 20.04 with Apache/Nginx – LinuxBabe

        This tutorial will be showing you how to install SuiteCRM on Ubuntu 20.04 with Apache or Nginx web server. SuiteCRM is a free open-source customer relationship management software solution that provides a 360-degree view of your customers and business. It’s a fork of the popular SugarCRM software because SugarCRM stopped releasing its open-source community edition in 2014.

      • How to Install Mahara on Ubuntu 20.04 | LinuxHostSupport

        Mahara is a free and open-source electronic portfolio management system written in PHP. It is a web-based application mainly used in academic institutions to provide a platform to share their knowledge. It helps you to create a digital classroom and organize a student’s progress. You can also create a blog, build a resume, file repository, and a competency framework using Mahara. Compared to other Learning Management Systems, Mahara is distributed and user-focused.

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Mahara on Ubuntu 20.04 server.

      • How to install deepin 20.2

        In this video, I am going to show how to install deepin 20.2.

      • How to Install Erlang Programming Language on Debian 10

        Erlang is a general-purpose programming language and runtime environment maintained by Ericsson OTP product unit. It is used to build scalable real-time systems for high availability. It has built-in support for concurrency, distribution, and fault tolerance. Generally, it is used in telecoms, banking, e-commerce, computer telephony and instant messaging.

        In this tutorial, I will show you how to install Erlang on Debian 10.

      • How To Install Wireguard on Debian 10 – idroot

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Wireguard on Debian 10. For those of you who didn’t know, WireGuard is an open-source, free, modern, and fast VPN server with state-of-the-art cryptography. It is quicker and simpler as compared to IPSec and OpenVPN. It is cross-platform and can run almost anywhere, including Linux, Windows, Android, and macOS.

        This article assumes you have at least basic knowledge of Linux, know how to use the shell, and most importantly, you host your site on your own VPS. The installation is quite simple and assumes you are running in the root account, if not you may need to add ‘sudo‘ to the commands to get root privileges. I will show you through the step-by-step installation of the Wireguard VPN on a Debian 10 (Buster).

      • Use command line to create, list, start & stop VirtualBox VMs

        If you want to use the command line terminal tool vboxmanage to create, deleted, list, start or stop VirtualBox Virtual Machines, here is the tutorial to follow…

        VirtualBox is open-source software available to install on all popular operating systems. It also supports Linux and in systems like Ubuntu, Manjaro, and more you can install it directly from the official repository. Although Virtualbox comes with a graphical user interface to control created virtual machines, still, if you want, can use its vboxmanage tool in the command terminal to manage VMs.

        Here we will let you know how to use the VboxManage command tool to start, stop and list VirtualBox virtual machines on Linux, Windows, or macOS.

      • Get started with batch files in FreeDOS | Opensource.com

        On Linux, it’s common to create shell scripts to automate repetitive tasks. Similarly, on FreeDOS, the open source implementation of old DOS operating systems, you can create a batch file containing several FreeDOS commands. Then you can run your batch file to execute each command in order.

        You create a batch file by using an ASCII text editor, such as the FreeDOS Edit application. Once you create a batch file, you save it with a file name and the extension .bat. The file name should be unique. If you use a FreeDOS command name as your own file name, the FreeDOS command probably will execute instead of your batch file.

        Virtually all internal and external FreeDOS commands can be used in a batch file. When you create a batch file, you are essentially writing a program. FreeDOS batch files may not have the power of a structured programming language, but they can be very handy for quick but repetitive tasks.

      • What is Git cherry-picking? | Opensource.com

        Whenever you’re working with a group of programmers on a project, whether small or large, handling changes between multiple Git branches can become difficult. Sometimes, instead of combining an entire Git branch into a different one, you want to select and move a couple of specific commits. This procedure is known as “cherry-picking.”

        This article will cover the what, why, and how of cherry-picking.

      • How To Use Chatons Online Services

        What is Chatons? Chatons (French: kitten) is a France-originated collection of free online services which have commitment in Free Software and Privacy initiated by infamous France organization Framasoft. The services available are video calls, file sharing, collaborative editing, and link shortening. Together, it can be a real good alternative / replacement to Google services. However, at the moment it presented mostly in French so most people didn’t know about it yet. It is the purpose of this article, to introduce Chatons to you all computer users in English language. This article starts with the practices, then examples, and ends with a short explanation. Let’s start!

    • Games

      • DevilutionX 1.2 Is Released For The Enjoyment Of Diablo Fans

        DevilutionX is a source port of the classic Diablo game with support for the Diablo: Hellfire extension pack that lets you play Diablo on a vast array of modern hardware, including hardware running GNU/Linux. Fans of this game from the late 1990s can enjoy a long list of game-play related improvements, performance improvements and other improvements in the latest DevilutionX release. The original game, or a shareware version, is required to use DevilutionX. Going with the shareware version will likely result in a huge disappointment.

        Diablo is a role-palying video game that was released by Blizzard Entertainment in January 1997. An expansion pack for it called Diablo: Hellfire was released later that year. Diablo was originally just for Microsoft Windows. PlayStation and macOS versions become available in 1998. There wasn’t any GNU/Linux release.

      • Diablo source port reimplementation DevilutionX version 1.2 is out now | GamingOnLinux

        DevilutionX aims to make playing the classic Diablo and Hellfire on modern systems a breeze, with a full public domain coded reimplementation and a big new 1.2 version is out now.

        Once again, a community of coders doing amazing work out in the open keeping a classic game very much alive and well. For us, having proper Linux support is great too since DevilutionX offers a great many enhancements to make running such a classic less of a hassle.

      • Warzone2100 4.0 Is Released With Vulkan Support, Built-In JavaScript Engine And Other Major Improvements

        Version 4.0 is a major upgrade to the Warzone 2100 strategy game originally released by Pumpkin Studios in 1999. The latest version can render graphics using Vulkan, DirectX (for Windows), Metal (for macOS) and OpenGL. The Qt dependencies have been dropped thanks to a new built-in JavaScript engine, there’s new soundtracks, higher resolution textures and a lot more.

      • Warzone 2100 4.0.0 Released with New “Factions” for Multiplayer

        Warzone 2100, real-time tactics hybrid computer game, released version 4.0.0 a few days ago with tons of changes.

      • UNBEATABLE presents a very stylish world where music is illegal

        Probably one of the coolest looking and sounding games I’ve seen in a long time, UNBEATABLE seems like it has everything going for it and it successfully funded on Kickstarter in only a few hours.

        Describing it seems a little difficult. It combines exploration and adventure where you do activities for NPCs to build up a set-list of music tracks, with the other side being a frantic two-button rhythm combat game with a lot of visual variety. It’s not particularly surprising it’s done so well, it does look amazing. Against the $55,000 initial goal on their Kickstarter they’re already on over $62,000 and they have another month of funding ahead.


        The developer has confirmed Linux support, mentioning clearly they’re focused on “PC / Mac / Linux” (with PC meaning Windows). Additionally, they’ve created a special side-story named “UNBEATABLE [white label]” that will come to Linux as well but for Windows initially.

      • Quirky comedy point and click adventure Dude, Where Is My Beer? is out for Linux | GamingOnLinux

        Interested in slightly weird and quirky comedy adventures? Dude, Where Is My Beer? is now available for Linux. Jump into the “confusing world of unnecessary craft beers and snobby hipsters”.

        The game is obviously poking fun at how massively varied the alcohol industry has become over time, especially when it comes to Ale and Beer with so many new flavours and companies appearing all the time. Not that I am complaining, I do like a good tasty Ale myself.

        “Can you find a normal beer in a world of conspicuously flavoured craft beer, and solve the mystery of the elusive, missing pilsner, using nostalgic interface from the golden age of adventure games? Talk to West Coast IPA and American Black Ale drinking hipsters and solve beer related puzzles at different stages of drunkenness; explore locations like a sports bar, a microbrewery, a dive bar and a rock bar in the city of Oslo, in your quest of finding a pilsner.”

      • Go on an adventure through Renaissance art in The Frogs, try out the demo | GamingOnLinux

        Done in a similar amusing way to The Procession to Calvary (different developer), the upcoming point and click adventure The Frogs puts you into Renaissance art based on a play from Aristophanes.

        Planned for release late 2021 from developer Michael Wells, you will “Survive awful puns, break all the fourth walls you run across, and challenge the boundaries of morality as you deal with immortality”. Sounds exactly like the kind of adventure I want to go on.


        You can follow The Frogs on Steam with a demo available right now.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • Why I love using bspwm for my Linux window manager

        The first reason—that it is simply a window manager—is probably the top thing to point out. Like i3, there are no graphical bells and whistles applied by default. You can certainly customize it to your heart’s content, but you will be putting in all the work to make it look like you want. That’s part of its appeal to me.

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

    • Distributions

      • MXLinux is the most downloaded Linux desktop distribution, and now I know why

        MXLinux. Have you heard of it? If you’re an ardent supporter of Linux on the desktop, you probably have. Otherwise, chances are pretty slim you’ve never heard tell of this particular Linux distribution–there’s a reason for that. MXLinux isn’t Ubuntu, Mint or even Fedora (in a pinch). MXLinux doesn’t have the brand recognition the other popular takes on the Linux distributions.

        It doesn’t have the cache of widespread familiarity. Then why is it the most downloaded Linux distribution on Distrowatch?

        A bit of a sidebar: I realize that Distrowatch isn’t the bellwether of Linux popularity. For those of us who’ve been around the Linux block for a few decades, it’s an important indicator. When I see that MXLinux has the No. 1 download spot (over Manjaro, Linux Mint, Pop!_OS and Ubuntu), I take notice.

      • Wallpaper corruption in containers maybe fixed

        When you bootup EasyOS, on the desktop there is an icon labelled “dunfell”, clicking which will launch the entire Dunfell 2.6.2 desktop in a container. The key combination ALT-F6 flips back to the main desktop. Other puppies can also be run in a container.

        A problem we have had right from the start, is wallpaper corruption in the container. It is ROX-Filer that manages the desktop wallpaper and icons, and the instance of ROX that runs in the container is not completely isolated from the ROX on the main desktop. I have not been able to understand exactly what the cause of the problem is, but a “sleep 4″ after starting JWM and before running ROX results in OK wallpaper — but not always, it seems some PCs require longer sleep.

      • Cheers to 10 Years

        Today marks ten years since the release of the very first version of elementary OS. Our 0.1 release, codenamed “Jupiter”, came with the bold tagline, “It’s gonna be huge”. A decade later, elementary OS is made up of over 130 open source git repositories, has its own FreeDesktop.org-recognized desktop environment, comes with more than a dozen first party apps and a unique app store with nearly 200 native third-party apps, has been translated to more than 20 languages, and most recently comes pre-installed on several desktops and laptops.

      • Screenshots/Screencasts

        • Lubuntu 21.04 Beta Run Through

          In this video, we are looking at Lubuntu 21.04 Beta.

        • Lubuntu 21.04 Beta

          Today we are looking at Lubuntu 21.04 Beta. It comes with Linux Kernel 5.11, LXQt 0.16, and uses about 500-600MB of ram when idling. Enjoy!

      • SUSE/OpenSUSE

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • Fedora Linux 34 Virtual Release Party, April 30th – May 1st

          The Fedora Team announced that they will be celebrating the upcoming final release of Fedora Linux 34 with a virtual Release Party. It will be held on the April 31st and May 1st.

          Fedora 34 will brings a massive set of changes across desktop, server, and other spins. It will be shipped this build with GNOME 40, which is one of the major highlights of the release. In addition, a new tiling window manager i3 spin is introduced for the first time.

          For this release, the Fedora Team announced that they will have the opportunity to celebrate virtually. This event will have a series of short sessions surrounding features in Fedora 34 and what’s happening in the Fedora community. There will also have a series of fun social sessions and activities, including a pub quiz and pictionary.

      • Debian Family

        • Debian Community News: Paul R. Tagliamonte, the Pentagon and backstabbing Jacob Appelbaum, part B

          Here we leak the next evidence of Paul Tagliamonte’s backstabbing while he was working for a White House team in the Pentagon. Notice the email is sent at 8:53am on a Friday morning, it appears to be sent during office hours.

          Please consider the strict legal obligations for US Federal employees. In particular, Government employees are required to uphold the constitution and be impartial when dealing with the public. Violating these rules may lead to criminal consequences.

          Tagliamonte’s email is not a “first hand account”

          Three other developers, Steffen Möller, Miriam Ruiz and Ansgar Burchardt had expressed concern about the social media mob attacking Appelbaum. Tagliamonte’s reply cancels their concerns without giving any good reasons.


          Questions need to be asked at the highest level about why Paul R. Tagliamonte was pushing the criminal accusations against a US citizen. Senior staff pictured with Tagliamonte may need to be called before Congress to explain whether they had any knowledge of these plots and whether the shaming of security researchers like Appelbaum and Julian Assange is part of an ongoing program.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Web Browsers

        • Mozilla

          • Mozilla Explains: SIM swapping

            These days, smartphones are in just about everyone’s pocket. We use them for entertainment, sending messages, storing notes, taking photos, transferring money and even making the odd phone call. Our phones have become essential appendages to life. If you’ve ever physically lost your phone, you know that sinking, desperate feeling of checking all your pockets and bags and fearing… can someone see my stuff? Get ready because there’s another way to lose your phone without it ever leaving your pocket, and it’s called SIM swapping.

          • You’ve been scraped, the Facebook data leak explained

            In early April, it was reported that there had been a Facebook data leak, raising alarms among Facebook account holders. Half a billion Facebook accounts were impacted. The dataset is from 2019, so it had been out there, but not widely circulated. Over the weekend, the data started popping up on popular hacking forums for free. The interesting story is where the data likely came from, what can be done with it, and what you can do to protect yourself.

          • This Week in Glean: Publishing Glean.js or How I configured an npm package that has multiple entry points

            A few weeks ago, it came the time for us to publish the first version of Glean.js in npm. (Yes, it has been published. Go take a look). In order to publish a package on npm, it is important to define the package entry points in the project’s package.json file. The entry point is the path to the file that should be loaded when users import a package through import Package from “package-name” or const Package = require(“package-name”).

            My knowledge in this area went as far as “Hm, I think that main field in the package.json is where we define the entry point, right?”. Yes, I was right about that, but it turns out that was not enough for Glean.js.


            Our users can finally import our package in Javascript and Typescript and they have well defined entry points to choose from depending on the platform they are building for.

            If they are building for Node.js though, they still might encounter issues. The default module system used by Node.js is commonjs. This is the one where we import packages by using the const Package = require(“package”) syntax and export modules by using the module.exports = Package syntax.

            Newer versions of Node, also support the ECMAScript module system , also known as ESM. This is the offical Javascript module system and is the one where we import packages by using the import Package from “package” syntax and export modules by using the export default Package syntax.

            Packages can provide different builds using each module system. In the exports field, Node.js allows packages to define different export paths to be imported depending on the module system a user is relying on. This feature is called “conditional exports”.

      • Productivity Software/LibreOffice/Calligra

      • FSFE

        • SFP#10: How to support Free Software and a sustainable digital infrastructure [Ed: FSFE trying to lecture us on Free software whilst attacking the pioneer of it and they can’t even be called FSFE! There’s a dispute.]

          In our 10th episode of the Software Freedom Podcast we talk with Elisa Lindinger from superrr lab. Together we discuss problems faced by Free Software projects and how to tackle them. In a broader frame we discover what would be needed for a more sustainable digital infrastructure and talk about the work Elisa does for this aim.


          Together, we discuss how a sustainable digital civil society can look like and what is still needed for this aim to be reached. This episode provides knowledge and insights for all of you who want to support Free Software and create a long-lasting digital society.

      • FSF

        • Luis Villa: Governing Values-Centered Tech Non-Profits; or, The Route Not Taken by FSF

          A few weeks ago, I interviewed my friend Katherine Maher on leading a non-profit under some of the biggest challenges an org can face: accusations of assault by leadership, and a growing gap between mission and reality on the ground.

        • GNU Projects

          • March GNU Spotlight with Mike Gerwitz: 14 new GNU releases!

            14 new GNU releases in the last month (as of March 25, 2021):

        • Licensing/Legal

          • How to Apply a License to Your Open Source Project

            License License License! Sometimes it feels like licensing is the only thing anyone ever talks about in FOSS. Despite its popularity as a topic of conversation, relatively few FOSS participants have a good understanding of what licenses are and even fewer know how to apply them correctly to a FOSS project. In just the few minutes needed to read this article you, too, can become one of the few, the proud, the license literate.

      • Programming/Development

        • IBM creates a COBOL compiler – for Linux on x86 • The Register

          IBM has announced a COBOL compiler for Linux on x86.

          News of the offering appeared in an announcement that states: “IBM COBOL for Linux on x86 1.1 brings IBM’s COBOL compilation technologies and capabilities to the Linux on x86 environment,” and describes it as “the latest addition to the IBM COBOL compiler family, which includes Enterprise COBOL for z/OS and COBOL for AIX.”

          COBOL – the common business-oriented language – has its roots in the 1950s and is synonymous with the mainframe age and difficulties paying down technical debt accrued since a bygone era of computing.

          So why is IBM – which is today obsessed with hybrid clouds – bothering to offer a COBOL compiler for Linux on x86?

          Because IBM thinks you may want your COBOL apps in a hybrid cloud, albeit the kind of hybrid IBM fancies, which can mean a mix of z/OS, AIX, mainframes, POWER systems and actual public clouds.

        • Ryan Kavanagh: Writing BASIC-8 on the TSS/8

          I recently discovered SDF’s PiDP-8. You can access it over SSH and watch the blinkenlights over its twitch stream. It runs TSS/8, a time-sharing operating system written in 1967 by Adrian van de Goor while a grad student here at CMU. I’ve been having fun tinkering with it, and I just wrote my first BASIC program1 since high school. It plots the graph of some user-specified univariate function. I don’t claim that it’s elegant or well-engineered, but it works!

        • Signal/Slot Connection Throttlers

          Today, we’ll talk about ways to throttle your signal/slots connections — in other words, how to activate a slot less often than the emission rate of the signal it’s connected to. The usual reason why you may want something like this is performance. Invoking a slot at a high frequency may be too expensive for your application, so you need to rate-limit the slot’s activation.

        • Python

        • Rust

          • Niko Matsakis: Async Vision Doc Writing Sessions IV

            Next week, we will be holding more vision doc writing sessions. We are now going to expand the scope to go beyond “status quo” stories and cover “shiny future” stories as well. Keep your eyes peeled for a post on the Rust blog and further updates!

          • Google Online Security Blog: Rust in the Android platform

            Correctness of code in the Android platform is a top priority for the security, stability, and quality of each Android release. Memory safety bugs in C and C++ continue to be the most-difficult-to-address source of incorrectness. We invest a great deal of effort and resources into detecting, fixing, and mitigating this class of bugs, and these efforts are effective in preventing a large number of bugs from making it into Android releases. Yet in spite of these efforts, memory safety bugs continue to be a top contributor of stability issues, and consistently represent ~70% of Android’s high severity security vulnerabilities.

          • Google Begins Allowing Rust Code For Developing Android – Phoronix

            Not only is the Linux kernel moving to allow Rust code to be optionally used within the kernel, but Google is now allowing Rust code to be used for system programming work on Android’s low-level operating system components too.

            Google announced on Tuesday by way of their security blog that they are now allowing Rust to be used for Android platform system code. Rust will be allowed in the Android Open-Source Project for “developing the OS itself” given its emphasis on memory-safety and security.

        • Java

          • Deploy Quarkus everywhere with Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL)

            Java is one of the most popular programming languages in the world. It has been among the top three languages used over the past two decades. Java powers millions of applications across many verticals and platforms. Linux is widely deployed in data centers, edge networks, and the cloud.

            Today we announced that Quarkus is now available for all Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) customers. If you are running RHEL, you can easily use the Red Hat build of Quarkus in your Java applications. If you are developing applications on a Kubernetes platform like Red Hat OpenShift, you can also use the Red Hat build of Quarkus as of November 2020.

            What is Quarkus, and how can you develop and deploy it on Red Hat Enterprise Linux? Read on to learn more.

          • What’s new with Quarkus? And other updates in Red Hat Runtimes

            As we round out the first quarter of 2021, we wanted to share the latest updates to the Red Hat Runtimes portfolio. As always, our team is working hard to bring customers the latest best-in-class innovations and updates to help make developers’ jobs a bit easier. Let’s get right to it.

  • Leftovers

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Security

          • LinkedIn Phishing Campaign: A New Threat

            A LinkedIn phishing campaign is the newest threat.

            Hackers [soc] Hit LinkedIn

            It seems like nothing is off limits anymore.

          • Google’s Vested Interest in Linux Security

            Google is now paying developers more money to work on securing their Linux kernels this year. The gesture may well be the start of the company’s bid to enforce a tighter grip on open source.

            Google’s action comes on the heels of rising threats to Linux that unfolded in the last year, as hackers pivot to new strategies like writing malware strains in the Go programming language.

            The spread rate of malware is staggering. Infected code incidents made a 500 percent spike in the last year. That represents a 2,000 percent increase since 2017, according to Google.

            This spike is no doubt because Go allows hackers to be versatile and target Windows, Mac, and Linux from the same codebase. Adding to this, 2020 alone saw a 40 percent increase in Linux-related malware families.

            We can speculate all we want on the number of factors driving this shift, such as accelerated cloud adoption. But there is no denying the existence of a significant marketplace gap.

            Capsule8 is a firm that specializes in securing Linux-based production environments. It’s chief scientist, vice president of product strategy Brandon Edwards, does not expect this trend in Linux vulnerabilities to die down.

          • Security updates for Wednesday

            Security updates have been issued by openSUSE (chromium), Oracle (flatpak and kernel), Red Hat (virt:8.3 and virt-devel:8.3), and SUSE (gssproxy and xen).

          • Reproducible Builds in March 2021

            In our monthly reports, we try to outline the most important things that have happened in the reproducible builds community. If you are interested in contributing to the project, though, please visit our Contribute page on our website.

            F-Droid is a large repository of open source applications for the Google Android platform. This month, Felix C. Stegerman announced apksigcopier, a new tool for copying signatures for .apk files from a signed .apk file to an unsigned one which is necessary in order to verify reproducibly of F-Droid components. Felix filed an Intent to Package (ITP) bug in Debian to include it in that distribution as well (#986179).

            On 9th March, the Linux Foundation announced the sigstore project, which is a centralised service that allows developers to cryptographically sign and store signatures for release artifacts. sigstore attempts to help developers who don’t wish to manage their own signing keypairs.

          • ISTIO-SECURITY-2021-002
    • Monopolies

      • Litigators reveal how they get record patent damages[Ed: Patrick Wingrove as megaphone for the trolling and 'extraction' parasites, who worry about money (by extortion) rather than innovation and justice]

        Counsel who secured huge awards for their clients in cases including Carnegie Mellon v Marvell set out their strategies for securing big patent payouts

      • Patents

        • MedImmune Licensee Standing Does not Apply to Portfolio License

          The Federal Circuit’s new decision in Apple Inc. v. Qualcomm Inc. (Fed. Cir. 2021) offers an interesting standing puzzle.

          After some heated litigation, Apple licensed 20,000+ Qualcomm patents as part of a six-year covenant-not-to-sue which resulted in the litigation being dismissed with prejudice. Meanwhile, the parallel inter partes reexaminations (IPRs) moved forward with regard to two particular Qualcom patents within the package of 20,000+.

          Although the PTAB granted Apple’s IPR petitions, the Board eventually sided with Qualcomm — holding that Apple had not proven that the claims were invalid. Apple then appealed to the Federal Circuit. The PTAB does not worry about Article III standing — because the PTAB is not an Article III court. However, standing comes into play once the case moves from the administrative agency into the appellate court.

          In MedImmune, Inc. v. Genentech, Inc., 529 U.S. 118 (2007), the Supreme Court held that a patent licensee has standing to challenge a patent’s validity even without stopping the royalty payments. Here, Apple argued that it likewise has standing. The problem, according to the court, is that cancelling of the two Qualcomm patents would not actually impact Apple’s obligations under the license. This contrasts with MedImmune where an invalidity finding would dramatically impact the royalty owed.

        • In 2020, pendency time for China’s invention and trademark were shortened [Ed: This may simply mean that either they hired more people or they lowered the quality, speeding things up by compromising the integrity of the process]

          The average pendency time for Chinese invention patent applications was about 22.2 months in 2019, and was reduced to 20 months in 2020.

        • Stefanie Glassford: Oral proceedings by video conference at the EPO – part two [Ed: This is illegal, but the litigation giant Marks & Clerk has taken over the media (Scottish Legal News in this case, sometimes mainstream media too) and is nowadays posting self-promotional fluff as though it’s news, reporting, journalism]

          The legality of holding oral proceedings without the consent of all parties has been formally questioned with an interlocutory decision from an Appeal Board dated 12 March 2021 (Appeal number T1807/15-3.5.02) referring the following question to the Enlarged Board of Appeal:

          “Is the conduct of oral proceedings in the form of a videoconference compatible with the right to oral proceedings as enshrined in Article 116(1) EPC if not all the parties to the proceedings have given their consent to the conduct of oral proceedings in the form of a videoconference?”

          In the interim, a different Board of Appeal have published a new decision ruling that oral proceedings by video conference are allowable, even where one party objects.

          The written decision for Appeal number T2320/16, published 24 March 2021, relates to a decision taken by a Board of Appeal during oral proceedings dated 4 February 2021. Accordingly, this decision predates the above referral to the Enlarged Board of Appeal. Consequently, the referral has had no impact on the outcome of this decision and is not considered in detail in the published written decision.

        • No Slowdown for EPO Patent Applications: Japan Ranks Third [Ed: This says absolutely nothing about patent quality, which was lowered, inviting applications for patents that aren't lawful but corrupt EPO would grant regardless]

          The Patent Index 2020 announced by the European Patent Office revealed that the number of international patent applications filed with it had decreased year-on-year by 0.7% to 180,250, second only to the record high number filed in 2019.

          Japan’s applications to the EPO dropped by 1.1% from the previous year to 21,841, ranking third behind the United States and Germany. Its filings accounted for 12.1% of the total.

        • Patent case: Judgment no. 2843/2020, Spain

          The Barcelona Court of Appeal (Section 15) overturned a first instance decision, making an interesting finding on the application of the “problem-solution approach”: if the revocation claimant submits that its choice of closest prior art only differs from the claimed invention in one (or more) specific feature(s), but the court finds that further differences exist in respect of other features, the court may automatically reject the obviousness objection without applying the second and third steps of the problem-solution approach. In addition, the Court of Appeals expresses skepticism regarding expert opinions aimed at the rebuttal of another opinion, where the expert did not undertake a direct inspection of the allegedly infringing products.

Petition in Support of FSF’s Decision to Put Its Founder in the Board Doubles Size of Hate Letter Propped Up by Corporate Media (Partly Funded by Monopolies)

Posted in Free/Libre Software, FSF at 7:33 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Last night: Pro-Free Software Foundation Petition Soon Reaching 6,000 Signatures (and Still Rising Steadily)

RMS letters graph

Summary: You cannot fool the population for eternity and there’s a reflexive response to a campaign of misinformation, as the graph above shows; notice it keeps growing and growing, albeit not the defamatory one from the (Google-funded) Mozilla- and Red Hat-connected Luis Villa, who put in the GNONE Foundation Microsoft people

EPOLeaks on Misleading the Bundestag — Part 9: A Veritable Virtuoso of Legal Sophistry

Posted in Europe, Law, Patents at 5:57 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Series index:

  1. The EPO Bundestagate — Part 1: How the Bundestag Was (and Continues to be) Misled About EPO Affairs
  2. The EPO Bundestagate — Part 2: Lack of Parliamentary Oversight, Many Questions and Few Answers…
  3. The EPO Bundestagate — Part 3: A “Minor Interpellation” in the German Bundestag
  4. The EPO Bundestagate — Part 4: Parroting the GDPR-Compliance Myth
  5. The EPO Bundestagate — Part 5: The Federal Eagle’s Disconcerting Metamorphosis
  6. EPOLeaks on Misleading the Bundestag — Part 6: Dr Petri Starts the Ball Rolling…
  7. EPOLeaks on Misleading the Bundestag — Part 7: Ms Voßhoff Alerts the Bundestag…
  8. EPOLeaks on Misleading the Bundestag — Part 8: The EPO’s Tweedledum, Raimund Lutz
  9. You are here ☞ A Veritable Virtuoso of Legal Sophistry

Lutz - Breakfast in Beijing
Breakfast in Beijing: Lutz together with his master Battistelli at an IP junket in the Nuo Hotel (November 2017).

Summary: “Lutz is also reputed to be closely linked to the German branch of the influential UPC lobby group centred around Prof. Winfried Tilmann.”

As head of the German delegation on the EPO‘s Administrative Council, Lutz is reputed to have been a key mover-and-shaker in the secretive backroom political machinations which took place during the controversial and protracted procedure (copy here [PDF]) to find a successor to EPO President Alison Brimelow in 2009/2010.

“During his time as Vice-President of the EPO’s Directorate of Legal and International Affairs (DG5), Lutz gained notoriety for being one of Battistelli’s most faithful and devoted lapdogs.”Lutz is believed to have been instrumental in securing the deal which led to Battistelli’s election as EPO President in March 2010.

It is also rumoured that an element of this deal included the understanding that Battistelli would subsequently see to it that Lutz was rewarded with a cushy sinecure as a Vice-President of the EPO.

Such upper management positions at the EPO are greatly coveted by senior German civil servants because they provide a lot of perks, including a generous tax-free salary and a convenient pre-retirement opportunity for the lucky winners to beef up their pension entitlements using the disproportionately generous compensation arrangements for EPO managers.

During his time as Vice-President of the EPO’s Directorate of Legal and International Affairs (DG5), Lutz gained notoriety for being one of Battistelli’s most faithful and devoted lapdogs.

“…whenever Battistelli had any dubious undertaking in mind, his standard modus operandi at meetings of the Council was to wheel out Lutz who could be counted upon to brush aside any reservations expressed by sceptical or dissenting Council delegates.”EPO insiders reckon that his role was even more sinister and corrosive than that of Željko Topić.

Topić basically played the part of a “placeholder” or “stub” Vice-President providing cover for Batistelli’s HR dompteuse, Elodie Bergot, who ruled the roost as the de facto “prima donna” of the EPO’s personnel department.

Lutz, on the other hand, was entrusted with the far more consequential task of ensuring that the EPO’s Administrative Council was supplied with the right kind of legal advice.

Thus, whenever Battistelli had any dubious undertaking in mind, his standard modus operandi at meetings of the Council was to wheel out Lutz who could be counted upon to brush aside any reservations expressed by sceptical or dissenting Council delegates.

By means of a carefully deployed smokescreen of bluff, bluster and legal sophistry, the Council delegates were repeatedly conned into rubber-stamping all sorts of questionable measures and at the same time dissuaded from asking too many awkward questions.

EPO insiders confirm that the catastrophic erosion of legal standards and the rule of law at the EPO during the Battistelli era was largely attributable to the intellectually corruptive influence of Lutz as the provider of phony “legal advice” to a gullible and naïve Administrative Council.

Lutz the Klutz
Lutz is reputed to be the author of the “legal fiction” of EPO compliance with the standards and requirements of European data protection law.

Of particular relevance to the present series is Lutz’s reputed role as the author of the “legal fiction” of EPO compliance with the standards of European data protection law.

For example at the 155th meeting of the Administrative Council in March 2018, Lutz made a statement about the impending entry into force of the GDPR in which he assured the Council delegates that “[t]he Office had its own data protection guidelines, at a level comparable to the new regulation” and that national offices could transmit their data to the EPO “without breaching the GDPR”.

Lutz also referred the Council to the “public interest” derogation under Article 49(1)(d) GDPR as a legal basis for data transfers to the EPO.

However, such reliance on Article 49 (1) (d) GDPR is at odds with the position of the European Data Protection Board (EDPB).

The relevant guidelines published by the EDPB (copy here [PDF]) state that Article 49(1)(d) GDPR should not be relied upon as a basis for data transfers which take place on a large scale and in a systematic manner. According to the EDPB, the derogations set out in Article 49 should not become “the rule” in practice. On the contrary, all data exporters (in particular public bodies) are encouraged to put in place appropriate safeguards in accordance with Article 46 GDPR rather than relying on the derogation as per Article 49(1) (d).

The EPOnian myth of GDPR-compliance created by Lutz has formed the basis a whole host of self-congratulatory EPO puff pieces such as “Linked data, secure data” (warning: epo.org link; copy here [PDF]), published by Battistelli in his presidential blog on 25 May 2018 – the day on which the GDPR entered into force – and carefully designed to pull the wool over the eyes of the public about the true state of the EPO’s data protection framework.

Lutz UPC marketing
Lutz at a UPC promotion event in Munich (November 2017)

Lutz is also reputed to be closely linked to the German branch of the influential UPC lobby group centred around Prof. Winfried Tilmann. In this connection he is said to have been responsible for recruiting Margot Fröhlinger to act as the EPO’s "Mrs UPC" in charge of unitary patent “marketing activities” at the EPO.

In the next part we shall see how Battistelli’s virtuoso of legal sophistry was almost universally despised and reviled among the rank and file of EPO staff.

He Said, Xi Said: Hard to Censor Techrights and It’s More Than a Web Site

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

Video download link

Summary: An explanation of some of the latest Techrights changes (mostly work on IPFS and Gemini this week, as they complement the Web site)

HAVING just published this article about the purposeless office, EPO, where two corrupt politicians are basically demolishing the institution for personal gain, we turn again to our censorship resistance mechanisms. The video above discusses changes to our IPFS index pages and changes to the Gemini capsule, mostly intended to better suit blind readers (we’ve received some constructive suggestions). Gemtext/Plain Text are now better separated, there’s a complete index in archive form (over 30,000 blog posts), and we’ve finally added a link to the feeds, as well as an archive of older feed elements (“daily-feed” and “feed” now appear in the front/landing page, as more software supports capsule subscriptions in Gemini).

“It’s infeasible to take us (or the information) down.”What does it all mean to people who are lesser technical or differently technical (proficient in a technical field that isn’t computing or the Internet)?

Can't censor this *Xi-tLet’s explain this very briefly.

Gemini is self-hosted (from my own home), it’s simple and light, and it should generally be robust to censorship unless my connection is cut or the home gets raided or something radical to that effect.

IPFS is a decentralised Web/Internet network akin to P2P; it’s almost impossible to take down and as long as copies of objects reside on several machines around the globe it’s really difficult to take down some controversial/sensitive bit of information (or an object; any kind of file would do, even video). We don’t have reasons to believe that the EPO will try to take down this (Web) site, which is possible with lawfare directed at DNS or World Wide Web equipment (routers, servers). The EPO has blocked Techrights for 6 or 7 years already. Of course staff can evade the block, especially when working from home or some mobile network (inside the Office many would not use the local Wi-Fi; it’s not trustworthy when it’s controlled by what many employees call “Mafia”).

Either way, the Web site has become just one of three methods for accessing the material. It’s infeasible to take us (or the information) down. They know it, so they’re less likely to even try. Deterrence works.

It’s worth noting that there are things in IPFS and Gemini that don’t exist anywhere in the site. So in a sense we’re already at a point where they’re not mere mirrors of the site.

A Patent System for Giant Corporations Like Boeing and Airbus, Not for Ordinary European Citizens

Posted in Deception, Europe, Microsoft, Patents at 9:34 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Video download link

Summary: There’s hardly any illusion left that the patent system in Europe is supposed to serve the public; instead what we’re seeing is an office that lost sight of its purpose and is instead trying to make law firms and their largest clients richer

THE EPO is out of control. It’s granting patents like water and examiners are made to feel like jelly. They joined the Office to challenge themselves (and patent applications) intellectually, not to be mindless clerks with steep quotas/targets. It’s the difference between peer-reviewing scholarly papers (unique) and marking school exams. One teaches you a lot, the latter is mostly repetitive and robotic.

“How many people can afford 9 years of legal bills?”In the video about I’m not going into the depths of this latest high-profile patent to be revoked/nullified (Konstanze Richter wrote about the EPO Boards of Appeal doing so, but it’s akin to another Juve marketing piece for law firms); instead I show this latest utter nonsense (warning: epo.org link) from António Campinos, who just like Benoît Battistelli fills up the “news” section with self-promotional trash, not news. They’re just floating a whole bunch of nonsense about quality and processes. The “news” section of epo.org became a stream of lies (JUVE reprints those verbatim); ask examiners what they think of it and they’ll gladly say that themselves! Many stakeholders feel the same way, astonished to see what the Office says about e-EQE blunders and kangaroo courts. SACEPO is another one of those subservient and propagandistic entities akin to think tanks, hardly a substitute/surrogate to oversight, audit, scrutiny, outside assessment and so on. Also check the composition of SACEPO and other such “Working Parties”; they’re industry-tied or industry-led. Large companies.

The above were both published this morning, minutes or about an hour apart. There’s nothing unusual about that. In fact, we’ve been getting accustomed to seeing all sorts of stories like that. We see them all the time, but they’ve recently been relegated to Daily Links. Many are in disciplines we don’t grasp too well, unlike software patents. Notice the part where the EPO is pushing proprietary Microsoft Office formats (DOCX) while internally outsourcing all the key operations to Microsoft. It’s illegal.

The cost of the EPO’s corruption/incompetence is huge. As pointed out in the video above, you need to fight for almost a decade over one single patent. To quote:

The US aerospace company Boeing and its European competitor Airbus have been fighting at the EPO for almost nine years. The disputed Boeing patent EP 1 798 872 protects a method for handling aircraft communications.

Yes, that’s right, 9 years. Almost half a patent’s total term. Who is this system designed to serve and encourage? How many people can afford 9 years of legal bills?

Links 7/4/2021: Godot 3.3 RC 8, Canonical Targets Robotics

Posted in News Roundup at 7:37 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • HP EliteDesk 800 G2 Mini Desktop PC running Linux – Week 1

        This is a weekly blog looking at a refurbished HP EliteDesk 800 G2 Mini Desktop PC running Linux. Refurbished PCs offer a great solution to your computing requirements.

        This machine was made available by Bargain Hardware. Bargain Hardware retails refurbished servers, workstations, PCs, and laptops to consumers and businesses worldwide. All systems are completely customisable on their website along with a vast offering of clean-pulled, tested components and enterprise replacement parts. They supply machines with a choice of Linux distros: Ubuntu, Debian, and Fedora. They even install FreeBSD.

        The HP EliteDesk 800 G2 Mini is available in a variety of configurations. Our machine unit came with a quad-core Intel i5-6500T (2.5 GHz that can turbo boost to 3.1 GHz) with Intel HD Graphics 530. It’s paired with a 256GB M2. NVMe SSD and 16GB of DDR4 RAM. There’s two memory slots with both populated in our configuration. The machine can take a maximum of 32GB of RAM.

      • The Best Linux Distros for Laptops in 2021

        Today, we bring you a list of the best general-purpose Linux distributions to run on your PCs and they are arranged in order of the most hits from users in the last 3 months on Distro Watch.

        This list could go on for hours because so many distros in the market are already good enough to run on your machine. But I would rather stop here so that you can drop your suggestions below.

        If you haven’t already seen it, check out how this list differs from its predecessor in The Top 10 Linux Desktop Distros.

      • 10 Best Linux Laptops of 2021
    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • mintCast 358 – The Ethical Ethos

        First up, in our Wanderings, I make a handoff, Joe repairs more stuff, Moss is in the news, Tony Hughes continues the challenge, and Mike the Builder makes a bike.

        Then, in the News, Mint sends relief, Ventoy has a birthday, JingPad gets closer, new docs Man up, and AlmaLinux soothes the soul.

        In Security, your smartphone is spying on you, Facebook springs another leak, and we disclose our vulnerability.

    • Applications

      • TiddlyWiki | Personal, non-linear, Note Taking Application on Linux

        There are many note taking applications available out there that each target a different Method used to keep track of information. Unless you are one of those blessed few with a photographic memory with endless roles of film, you may have to write some things down. Although there are a few different applications I use to record information, I consider one to be my perpetual system of record, TiddlyWiki. I have been using it for about 10 years now, the same file has grown with me over the years. I have used TiddlyWiki to keep my projects organized for work and personal projects.

        Bottom Line Up Front: If you want to keep your data locally, have notes that you can use whether or not you have access to the internet, easily replicated and will not ever be left with a system that loses support and a loss of your notes. This just may be the application for you. It is simple enough to get started with it but extensible enough that you may never out grow it.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • tmux lets you select and copy text with your keyboard

        Anyway, yes, tmux lets you select and copy text with your keyboard.

      • Prometheus and Aegis

        In order to help keep an eye on all of the services I run, I use Prometheus for collecting metrics. For an example of the kind of metrics I collect, see here (1). In the configuration that I have, Prometheus runs on a server in my apartment and reaches out to my other machines to scrape metrics over the network. This worked great when I had my major services listen over TCP, I could just point Prometheus at the backend port over my tunnel.

        When I started using Unix sockets for hosting my services, this stopped working. It became very clear very quickly that I needed some kind of shim. This shim needed to do the following things:

        Listen over the network as a HTTP server

        Connect to the unix sockets for relevant services based on the path (eg. /xesite should get the metrics from /srv/within/run/xesite.sock)

        Do nothing else

      • How to Host a Website on an Apache Web Server

        The Apache HTTP Server (commonly referred to simply as Apache), is a free and open-source web server software brought to you by the Apache Software Foundation. Apache has been around for more than 2 decades and is considered beginner-friendly.

        In this tutorial, you will learn how to install an Apache webserver to host a simple HTML website running on a Linux platform.

      • How to Give Sudo Permission to Users on Ubuntu Linux [Beginner’s Tip]

        When you install Ubuntu, you are asked to create a user and this user gets sudo access by default. This is good because you need root privileges to manage the system.

        But what about new users you created later on Ubuntu? What if the new user also needs to have sudo access for some valid reasons?

        In this beginner’s tutorial, I’ll show you the steps for adding a user to sudoer in Ubuntu using both GUI and command line methods.

        The GUI method is suitable for the desktop version while the command line method works for both desktop and server versions of Ubuntu.

        This tutorial is not about creating users in Ubuntu. I assume that the other user is already created. Needless to say that to give sudo access to another user, you must have sudo access yourself.

      • Apt and Apt-get – Which One to Use

        The Linux apt and apt-get tools are probably one of the most frequently used command-line tools in Debian-based distros when it comes to handling software packages. The two are very similar, however, a few subtle differences exist between the two. In this guide, we will aim to distinguish between apt and apt-get and how they are used.

        Evolution of apt command

        To get a better grasp of the two commands, let’s go back in time and see how the apt command evolved over time. Prior to Debian 8 (Jessie) and Ubuntu 16.04 (Xenial Xerus), users interacted with the APT package manager (Advanced Package Tool) using the apt-get command. However, the command-line tool did not get much traction from the users, and most did not exhaustively use most of the options that came with it.

      • How to Enable Remi Repository to Install Latest LAMP Stack

        In this article we will introduce Remi, a third-party repository that includes up-to-date versions of Apache, MySQL / MariaDB, PHP, and related software.

      • How to Install PostgreSQL in Ubuntu 20.04 – TecAdmin

        PostgreSQL is a powerful, reliable, robust and open source object-relational database system.

        The latest version of this database system is PostgreSQL 3.2, while versions 112.6, 11.11, 10.16, 9.6.21, & 9.5.25 still getting the regular updates.

        This tutorial describe you to how to install the newest PostgreSQL on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS Linux system.

      • Setting up UEFI HTTP boot with libvirt | Enable Sysadmin

        I’ve been a big proponent of network-based provisioning pretty much my entire career. My second job out of college involved imaging ~800 computers multiple times a week. When I was hired, my predecessors used floppy disks to load a small operating system (OS), matching network interface card (NIC) driver, and imaging client (remember Ghost?). The bottom line was it was very time/labor-intensive and a horrible process. Imaging a group of systems took about 30-60 minutes. Long story short, we reduced that time to about five minutes after leveraging a combination of PXE, Wake-on-LAN, Universal Network Device Interface (UNDI) drivers, virtual LANs (VLANs), and IGMP snooping. My second iteration of the solution took the total attended time to less than 30 seconds. It’s an amazing technology for provisioning and I even got hired at Red Hat by giving a presentation on the preboot execution environment (PXE). Needless to say, I’m a huge fan.

      • How to Filter log file entries based on date range in Linux

        If you are facing difficulty while systematically reading log files. Then you are in the right place.

        Simple doing cat to read log file is a kind basic way to inspect log file. But when you want to filter data in an organized way based on time, then we use awk or grep.

        The awk is a popular command-line tool used to manipulate data in files and generate a report based on a given pattern in the Linux System. While grep is simple pattern tool that search pattern using a regular expression.

    • Games

      • Godot Engine – Release candidate: Godot 3.3 RC 8

        In case you missed the recent news, we decided to change our versioning for Godot 3.x and rename the upcoming version 3.2.4 to Godot 3.3, thereby starting a new stable branch. Check the dedicated blog post for details.

        Here’s another Release Candidate for Godot 3.3! Keeping this post short as there wasn’t much change, just a handful of fixes – refer to the 3.3 RC 7 post for details on new features.

        We’re pretty confident about this candidate (Famous Last Words™) so if no new regression is found, the next build should hopefully be the stable release! If you haven’t tried 3.3 RC builds yet, now would be a great time to do it to help us ensure everything upgrades smoothly from 3.2.3 to 3.3.

    • Distributions

      • BSD

        • Running Steam’s Linux Build On FreeBSD Is Becoming Increasingly Capable For Gaming

          For many years it’s been possible to run Linux games on FreeBSD along with other Linux applications thanks to FreeBSD’s “Linuxulator” Linux binary compatibility layer. With that more recently it’s becoming possible to run even more recent games thanks to improvements to FreeBSD’s graphics drivers, the Linux binary compatibility code, and other FreeBSD improvements — Steam is even working out for more titles.


          If all went well, FreeBSD gamers can then just run steam and enjoy Steam on FreeBSD thanks to the Linux compatibility support. Though so far this method has only been tested for Linux-native games and trying to get Steam Play / Proton working on FreeBSD will likely be an extra can of worms.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • Securely connect Red Hat Integration Service Registry with Red Hat AMQ Streams

          Service Registry includes a set of pluggable storage options for storing APIs, rules, and validations. The Kafka-based storage option, provided by Red Hat AMQ Streams, is suitable for production environments where persistent storage is configured for a Kafka cluster running on Red Hat OpenShift.

          Security is not optional in a production environment, and AMQ Streams must provide it for each component you connect to. Security is defined by authentication, which ensures a secure client connection to the Kafka cluster, and authorization, specifying which users can access which resources. I will show you how to set up authentication and authorization with AMQ Streams and Service Registry.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Canonical and Open Robotics partner for Robot Operating System

          Canonical and Open Robotics have announced a partnership for Robot Operating System (ROS) Extended Security Maintenance (ESM) and enterprise support, as part of Ubuntu Advantage, Canonical’s service package for Ubuntu.

          ROS support will be made available as an option to Ubuntu Advantage support customers. As a result, users already taking advantage of critical security updates and Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVE) fixes will now have a single point of contact to guarantee high quality fixes for ROS.

          According to Canonical, this partnership means that the two companies will be able to support the robotics community by making ROS robots and services easier to build and package, simpler to manage, and more reliable to deploy.

          “With ROS deployed as part of so many commercial products and services, it’s clear that our community needs a way to safely run robots beyond their software End-Of-Life dates. Canonical’s track record delivering ESM, together with our deep understanding of the ROS code base, make this partnership ideal. Ubuntu Linux has been central to the ROS project from the beginning, when we released ROS Box Turtle on Ubuntu Hardy over a decade ago” said Brian Gerkey, CEO of Open Robotics. “We’re excited to be part of this offering that will enable users to access quality support from both organisations.”

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Google releases the source code for Lyra low bitrate speech codec

        Google showcased Lyra audio codec for high-quality voice calls at a low 3 kbps bitrate last February. But at the time, it was only for our eyes to see, or rather our ears to listen to, as the company did not release any software, but only audio samples with excellent quality compared to Speex @ 3 kbps or Opus @ 6 kbps.


        The beta release provides the tools and APIs needed for Lyra encoding and decoding, and is currently optimized for the 64-bit Arm Android platform, but can also be run in Linux x86 64-bit.

        There is also an example app – lyra_android_example – that integrates with the Android NDK and offers a minimal GUI with two buttons to either record from the microphone and encode/decode with Lyra, or runs a benchmark that encodes and decodes in the background and prints the timings to logcat.

      • libbluray

        libbluray is an open-source library designed for Blu-Ray Discs playback for media players, like VLC or MPlayer. This research project is developed by an international team of developers from Doom9. Latest release is libbluray 1.3.0.

      • Web Browsers

        • Mozilla

          • Firefox Proton With Major Redesign Change is Coming Soon. Take a Look Before the Final Release [Ed: Scientific-sounding 'buzzwords' as marketing strategy for Firefox]

            While Firefox’s market share is significantly declining over the years, it is still one of the best Google Chrome alternatives out there.

            Recently, they have been adding a lot of important privacy-focused features. But, not everyone cares about the features when considering a browser, the user experience also matters.

            With Firefox Quantum and Photon, they worked on improving the performance and UX but still did not manage to regain the market share they once had.

      • Openness/Sharing/Collaboration

        • Open Access/Content

          • [Old] If you want impact, why aren’t you writing for Wikipedia?

            When I ask my colleagues why they don’t get involved with Wikipedia, I no longer hear the excuse that it could hurt their reputations. The typical answer, instead, is: “Wonderful idea, but I have no time. I need to write another paper/book”. But this sense of what ought to be prioritised is misguided. Wikipedia entries appear in the top results returned by virtually any respectable search engine. It has millions of readers. There is no greater direct contribution to disseminating human knowledge that an academic could make than to lend it their expertise. And yet even academics who recognise that fact do not alter their behaviour.

            The reason, of course, is that they are given no credit for Wikipedia work by university management. In the deluge of emails about various university initiatives that I scan through every day, for instance, the word “Wikipedia” is curiously absent – and anecdotal evidence makes me reasonably certain that my experience is not exceptional. It just isn’t on managers’ horizon.

      • Programming/Development

        • Wireframe in UX Design – A Beginner’s Guide

          If you’re a UX designer then we want to ask a few simple questions to you…

          How would you decide the components or the elements in the navigation bar of your web pages?

          How would you decide that you need four-column grids or three-column grids on your web page?

          How would you decide on your mobile app that you need to choose a scrollable item or a fixed item of a fixed height?

          Where to put the images? Where to put the videos? Where to put the links? Where to list out the items?

          All the above questions need to be answered when you’re building an app. For a small and simple website, these things are clear and overlooked but for big companies such as Flipkart, Amazon, or Zomato these things can not be overlooked.

        • Python

          • 35 Python script examples | FOSS Linux

            Python is a common and in-demand programming language these days because it can create applications ranging from easy to complex. This article is for those new to Python programming and want to learn it from the ground up in a short amount of time.

        • Java

          • 20 Best Java Tools for Developers in 2021

            Hello, World! Hello Web developers! I know you all have been working great and hard on your websites, but now it’s time to give your coding a little break and explore the 20 Best Java tools of 2021 that’s sure to make your life easy.

            Java is one commercial-grade programming language that no web developer can avoid. I am sure that for most of you, much of your professional life is spent using Java.

            We may come from different schools of thought for Java – you may consider it to be the simplest programming language, and I might consider it to be the toughest, but the truth remains! If you got to develop, you got to Java!

    • Standards/Consortia

      • Quic: the Elephant in the Room

        I’ve stressed throughout this that a Google-like company could take this into their own hands and just implement it without buy in from anybody. That was what made Quic possible in the first place since anything else than that is beating up against an ossified and sclerotic industry. Indeed the Certificate Industrial Complex would completely lose their shit as their gravy train is shut down. Given DANE and DKIM, the use of DNS to authorize public keys for use elsewhere is well understood and should be completely safe given DNSSec, and arguably safer given that there are far fewer middle men CA’s involved to screw up.

  • Leftovers

    • Humbaba’s Axiomata

      The master of the universe That is the title they gave That’s what they say when they pray, but They’ve got it all wrong It isn’t the master at all It’s the mystery Of the universe which Demands your fear, and care, And respect, Attention, said Humbaba Guard of the Great Cedar Forest Hacked to death by Gilgamesh And Enkidu, with the aid of Utu/Shamash This is your civilization, he says, Your myth, your law, For Utu also gave the law to Hammurabi The Code, from codex, from caudex A tree trunk, in your sacred Latin — But there are two trees, two tablets, That of Hammurabi And Sophocles’ Antigone’s Unwritten code The unwritten law and the written Order and the just The two trees, they also symbolize these Tree of life, living, flowing — Physis And Nomos, the law of tradition, Order, authority, force The positive, written law, from nemein: To seize, to take, and allot, and exploit

      Taking, extracting, depriving The common, the community Is what makes private property Concentrating value, valere, Taking the health out and leaving the sick The Great Cedar Forest The Great Bull of Marduk The bull of the market Bulldozers of progress Leave wreckage, and profit The latter for only a few None for you

    • In Memoriam: Nawal el Saadawi, 1931-2021

      That bold spirit of hers, immortalized in over 50 books she published during her lifetime, and her unwavering commitment through her writing and her activism to debunk our rationalizations of religious and racialized economic and patriarchal ideologies, is what drew me to her as it did countless others across borders north and south. We met on a fateful evening in spring of 1998, when I drove my little red Suzuki car from Ossining NY, 25 miles south to where the Brecht Forum was then located in downtown NYC in Chelsea. That white shock of hair was like a secular halo around her brown, vibrant, mischievous face, her presence at once commanding and welcoming, her gaze as it looked at you, piercing and unforgiving, yet full of curiosity and humanity, her talk that night engaging, warm, full of humor and pulling all of her audience into its seductive embrace—yet deadly serious, and brilliantly scathing in its attack on all manner of pieties. Not least of these was her unmasking of Islamist right-wing movements in Arab and other Muslim countries, as having little to do with religion, and everything to do with power; both a consequence of, as well as handmaiden to, a postmodern neoliberalism that serves the needs of Empire. Her phrase for this historical conjuncture of forces, succinct and electrifying in its clarity, was “the global imperialist class patriarchal system.” As an immigrant from Pakistan, I was acutely aware and troubled by this confluence of factors that had and was continuing to create havoc in my country of birth, an unleashing of extremist Islamism aided and abetted by both the USA as well as Saudi Arabia at the expense of the rights of women and religious minorities back home. Unholy alliances, indeed.

      We developed a long and enduring friendship based on, and extending the concept of feminist solidarity for which her organization, AWSA—Arab Women’s Solidarity Association—became a spark. She organized several annual conferences under its aegis in Cairo, at which she invited many of us from across the globe to attend and share our work, and thanks to which so many “dissident friendships” across race, class, gender and national borders were formed.

    • Conservancy Beyond the Pale

      “Pale” – palus (Latin), wooden stake, fence: pallidus (Latin), white.

      “Beyond the pale” – Outside the bounds of morality or good behavior (first recorded use by J. Harington (1560-1612), English author, inventor of the flushing WC).

    • Ann Arbor doesn’t need streetlights

      Black ass is obvious at 2:00AM on Geddes Avenue. Should I blame N my thighs, sheering denim to skin windows? Or these cornbread- N cultivated hips Clifton passed on to me that seem much broader on back roads N void of streetlights? Either way, I’m wading the pitch black of November 9, 2016. Satisfied frat boys N walking Geddes the opposite way spot the Baartman in my stride and toss this N muffled drunken greeting to skew me: Hey, girl…Hey, girl…Hate won! N and so I wave my most vocal finger, keeping on toward the university bus stop. The joy of those boys—its color, its N god—moves me to a cystic anger, the sort of crying that licks and bends the perforated edge of ancestry. But once I’m home N I plan on steeping oolong, waxing my shins, commencing the second season of Girlfriends, then N dozing off. I’ll wake up Thursday, hush post-election coverage N with fits of Boyz II Men and vacuuming, phone some old undergrad friends that understand all too N well my need to vodka evenings to a curt and drastic end. Then I’ll N doze again. Probably wake and write at the Starbucks on State, a booth by N the lav. A novelist beside me translating war will ask, What’s the word for “patrie” in English? I’ll doze N and wake like this for two whole calendars—sun up then down like a father’s last pushups. Finally a Master in N Public Health, I’ll choose tobacco lobbying in some swollen metro like The N District. In a Foggy Bottom loft nearby a two-story Whole Foods, I’ll sleep alone until open N mic on the ungentrified side of U Street. A beautician born & trained in Orlando N will spit a piece about America’s kitchen, its nappyheaded dream, a recipe of kinks. The mic N will give a shrill feedback. The audience will unravel its blouse of hums. And pillow-talking that night, the two of us N unclothed, our breath a blessèd mess of sours, she’ll recount her hardest client— N five cornrows, sowed on the scalp of her own nephew, found wan and black blue at the foot of a juke box. /p>

    • President Biden’s new executive order could oblige software vendors to tell Uncle Sam about security breaches

      Software vendors will be obliged to promptly notify their US federal government customers in the event of any security breach, a draft executive order from President Joe Biden’s administration proposes.

      The order – which follows the high impact SolarWinds breach late last year – would also mandate the use of multi-factor authentication and data encryption within US federal agencies, Reuters reports.

      In addition, the order would compel vendors to retain more records and work with the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) in responding to incidents.

    • Education

      • Betsy DeVos Takes Her Assault on Public Schools Back to the States

        Betsy DeVos did not succeed in dismantling public education during her four-year tenure as Donald Trump’s secretary of education. That’s because, despite the billionaire campaign donor’s determined efforts, the federal government is not the primary battleground in the fight for the future of our schools. Most of those big battles play out at the state and local levels of government. So, now that she’s on the outs in Washington, DeVos is taking her crusade back to states such as Wisconsin—where she and her allies are conniving to influence Tuesday’s election for state superintendent of public instruction.

        The choice is between an ardent advocate for public schools, Jill Underly, and a supporter of the voucher schemes that are favored by DeVos and the billionaire donors who for years have attacked teachers and the unions that represent them, Deborah Kerr.

    • Health/Nutrition

      • Opinion | It’s Time to Junk “Junk Insurance”

        We should be working to strengthen the protections of the Affordable Care Act and expand health care to all, not punch holes in the foundation.

        About four years ago, I was a 40 year old healthy, successful, and busy small business owner. Then I walked into a doctor’s office with a nagging cough, and walked out as a stage 4 cancer patient.

      • Amnesty International’s Annual Global Human Rights Report Details Harm—and Heroism—Amid Pandemic

        “Covid-19 has brutally exposed and deepened inequality both within and between countries, and highlighted the staggering disregard our leaders have for our shared humanity.”

        Offering an incisive overview of “a world in disarray” and focusing largely on how governments have responded—or failed to respond—to the coronavirus pandemic, Amnesty International on Tuesday released its annual global human rights report.

      • The Coming Antibiotic-Resistance Pandemic that Could Make COVID Look Like the Flu

        Big pharmaceutical companies have not come out of COVID-19 looking like model global citizens. Pfizer has been accused of bullying South American governments after demanding they put up military bases as collateral in exchange for vaccines. Meanwhile, Bill Gates persuaded Oxford University to sign an exclusive deal with AstraZeneca for its new offering, rather than allow it to be copied freely by all. The British/Swedish multinational quickly announced it would fall 50 million vaccines short on its first shipment to the European Union.

      • American Pandemic
      • With Nicaragua, Scary Covid Projections Are More Newsworthy Than Hopeful Results

        There were some cases of obvious neglect—Brazil was and is a prime example ( FAIR.org, 4/12/20). But the press also turned on Nicaragua, repeating allegations from local opposition groups that the Sandinista government was in denial about the dangers, and that the country was poised on the edge of disaster.

        When, as the death toll in other countries grew alarmingly, Nicaragua “flattened the curve” of virus cases more quickly than its neighbors, its apparent success was ignored. Despite the importance of identifying how poorer countries can contain the virus effectively, measures used by Nicaragua remain uninvestigated by the international media. Why did this come about?

      • Saving Lives and Going Hungry: NYC Ambulance Workers Demand Higher Pay

        Mike Greco was worried. In early March 2020, New York City had confirmed its first case of Covid-19, and the vice president of Local 2507, the union representing employees of the city’s emergency medical services (EMS), knew how overworked and exhausted EMS workers already were. At a special City Council hearing on March 5, he testified that EMS was already handling 1.5 million calls a year. “If you were to have another half million calls in a pandemic, you would overwhelm the system,” he said.

        Weeks later, the city’s 911 system was inundated. On March 30, it received more than 6,500 calls, its busiest day ever, surpassing September 11, 2001. Response times lagged, and families waited in agony for ambulances. Greco spent months working from 7 am to midnight, making sure Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs) and paramedics had access to personal protective equipment.

      • Anti-Facts and Anti-Vaxx

        Support independent cartooning: join  Sparky’s List—and don’t forget to visit TT’s  Emporium of Fun, featuring the new book and plush Sparky!

      • Pandemic Profiteers: Hospitals Sued Patients over Medical Debt While Getting Billions in Relief Aid

        We look at pandemic profiteering in the medical system as a new report by Kaiser Health News reveals some of the nation’s richest hospitals recorded hundreds of millions of dollars in surplus over the past year after accepting federal healthcare bailout grants. This comes as hospitals in New York have sued thousands of patients during the pandemic, and Northwell — which is run by a close ally of New York Governor Andrew Cuomo — has faced intense criticism for practices like billing patients at its Lenox Hill Hospital over $3,000 for COVID tests — more than 30 times the typical cost. “There’s a lot of talk in our healthcare system about putting patients first, … but this is not doing that,” says Elisabeth Benjamin, vice president of health initiatives at the Community Service Society of New York and co-founder of the Health Care for All New York campaign. “Suing patients ruins their lives.” We also discuss how Biden’s CARES Act made 3.7 million more people eligible for the Affordable Care Act’s premium subsidies.

      • Hospitals Sued Patients Over Debt While Raking in Billions in Relief Aid

        We look at pandemic profiteering in the medical system as a new report by Kaiser Health News reveals some of the nation’s richest hospitals recorded hundreds of millions of dollars in surplus over the past year after accepting federal healthcare bailout grants. This comes as hospitals in New York have sued thousands of patients during the pandemic, and Northwell — which is run by a close ally of New York Governor Andrew Cuomo — has faced intense criticism for practices like billing patients at its Lenox Hill Hospital over $3,000 for COVID tests — more than 30 times the typical cost. “There’s a lot of talk in our healthcare system about putting patients first, … but this is not doing that,” says Elisabeth Benjamin, vice president of health initiatives at the Community Service Society of New York and co-founder of the Health Care for All New York campaign. “Suing patients ruins their lives.” We also discuss how Biden’s CARES Act made 3.7 million more people eligible for the Affordable Care Act’s premium subsidies.

      • Biden Urged to Withdraw All Trump Era Medicaid Work Requirements

        While the White House in recent weeks has taken steps to overturn a Trump-era initiative enabling states to restrict Medicaid eligibility by imposing punitive work requirements, healthcare advocates on Monday urged President Joe Biden to rescind all Medicaid work requirement policies approved by his predecessor.

      • The Emergency 911 System Where Callers Still Don’t Always Get Proper CPR Instructions

        It’s been nearly two years since Rhode Island lawmakers approved funding to train all 911 call takers to provide CPR instructions over the phone, but new data shows no improvement in people’s chances of receiving CPR in the critical minutes prior to the arrival of first responders.

        Only about one in five people who went into cardiac arrest in their homes or someplace other than a hospital or health care setting in Rhode Island last year received CPR before police, fire or emergency medical providers showed up, according to data provided to The Public’s Radio by the state Department of Health. The state’s bystander CPR rate has remained between 19% and 21% since 2018.

      • What Is Necropolitics? The Political Calculation of Life and Death

        Once you see how the logics of necropolitics structure our society, you won’t be able to unsee it. Let’s take a closer look at this framework through an example we’re all too familiar with: the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. To date, over half a million people have died from COVID-19 in the U.S. Marginalized communities have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic. Black people are far more likely to die from the virus than white people. Indigenous people are dying at a rate more than double that of white people and even that is likely an underestimate. Communities of color have been left behind by the vaccine rollout too. In a piece last spring for the New Republic, critical race theorist Kimberlé Williams Crenshaw denounces this racial disparity in COVID-19 outcomes as a “bald political calculus” that “pivots on an ‘acceptable’ number of deaths in poorer non-white communities.” It is, Crenshaw writes, “a kind of genocide.”

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Are You One of the 533M People Who Got Facebooked?
        • Your Slack DMs aren’t as private as you think

          Is Slack good for actually getting your work done? That’s debatable. But the popular messaging platform — which boasted more than 12 million daily active users as of last year — is definitely a promising medium for employers, regulatory agencies, the government, and even hackers seeking a trove of data about a company and its workers. Even your coworkers could find out more about you than you might expect.

          The number of Slack messages your workplace might be able to access has actually grown as Slack has built out its workplace app. Last year, the company launched a new tool called Slack Connect, which allows different workplaces to share channels on the app. The company announced that the feature was expanded again last month, so anyone could send invitations to direct message to other Slack users — even if they work at another workplace (whether users can actually send and accept these invites depends on whether their workplace has put in restrictions). But just because you’re messaging someone at a different workplace doesn’t mean your boss couldn’t necessarily see the messages you send.

        • Apple Mail Zero-Click Security Vulnerability Allows Email Snooping

          According to Mikko Kenttälä, founder and CEO of SensorFu, exploitation of the bug could lead to unauthorized disclosure of sensitive information to a third party; the ability to modify a victim’s Mail configuration, including mail redirects which enables takeover of victim’s other accounts via password resets; and the ability to change the victim’s configuration so that the attack can propagate to correspondents in a worm-like fashion.

        • Security

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • Australian Government Proposes Stripping Internet Users Of Their Anonymity

              I thought we had put this sort of idiocy behind us, but I see it’s back again. In 2011, some German politicians suggested the country’s youths be required to obtain some sort of internet driver’s license following a party that got out of hand after a private Facebook invite was accidentally made public. Somehow, obtaining an ID to use social media services would prevent this from happening in the future, but officials were extremely light on details.

            • UK Politicians Getting Serious About Ending End-To-End Encryption

              Last week we noted that there was some fairly mixed up pressure mounting on UK politicians to block encryption from some confused charities which (falsely) thought that ending encryption would somehow protect children. We also noted that many of the politicians pushing to end encryption… were using encrypted messaging themselves in an effort to dodge public records requests.

            • Facebook Data Leak Scrutinized by Big Tech’s Top EU Data Watchdog

              The Irish Data Protection Commission is trying to “establish the full facts” since the weekend and so far “received no proactive communication from Facebook,” the regulator said in a statement on its website on Tuesday. It said the tech company assured it that “it is giving highest priority to providing firm answers” to the authority.

              Personal information on 533 million Facebook users reemerged on a hacker website for free on Saturday. The information included phone numbers and email address of users, the regulator said Tuesday. Facebook has said the data is old and was already reported on in 2019.

            • The UK Is Trying to Stop Facebook’s End-to-End Encryption

              Patel will headline an April 19 roundtable organized by the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC), according to a draft invitation seen by WIRED. The event is set to be deeply critical of the encryption standard, which makes it harder for investigators and technology companies to monitor communications between people and detect child grooming or illicit content, including terror or child abuse imagery.

              End-to-end encryption works by securing communications between those involved in them—only the sender and receiver of messages can see what they say and platforms providing the technology cannot access the content of messages. The tech has been increasingly made standard in recent years with WhatsApp and Signal using end-to-end encryption by default to protect people’s privacy.

            • Understanding browser cookies

              Even though I’ve been doing web things for a while now, I confess I had never dealt with browser cookies other than clicking those cookie notifications on every other website you visit these days.

              I mean, I knew that it was a form of storage on the browser, but I’d always used localStorage for that. Recently I was working on something that used browser cookies and I figured it was a good time to figure them out.

            • How Facebook will benefit from its massive breach

              Facebook’s surveillance data isn’t that valuable, so it has to gather a lot of it. Most of its ad-tech advantage is just fraud: lying to advertisers about who saw its ads, lying to publishers about which kinds of content generate the most revenue.


              The data advantage itself is very short-lived; for example, location data is highly prized by advertisers who want to show you an ad for shoes while you’re outside a shoe-store. This value is annihilated as soon as you move somewhere else.

              Data isn’t the new oil, it’s the new oily rag: a low-grade waste-product that is only valuable when it is piled up in such vast quantities that it poses an existential, civilization-ending danger.

            • European Commission must ban biometric mass surveillance practices, say 56 civil society groups

              On 1 April 2021, a coalition of 56 human rights, digital rights and social justice organisations sent a letter to European Commissioner for Justice, Didier Reynders, ahead of the long-awaited proposal for new EU laws on artificial intelligence (AI). The coalition is calling on the Commissioner to prohibit dangerous and harmful uses of AI that contravene fundamental rights. Specifically, they call to ban uses of biometrics that enable mass surveillance or other dangerous and harmful uses of AI, on fundamental rights groups.

              This open letter builds on the January letter by 62 civil society organisations calling for red lines in the AI proposal and the letter from 116 MEPs (Members of the European Parliament) calling on the European Commission to put people ahead of profit.

    • Defence/Aggression

      • ‘The Kremlin’s calculations have changed’ Russia is building up troops near the border with Ukraine. We asked experts if full-scale war is inevitable.

        Recently, there’s been a lot of talk about worsening relations between Russia and Ukraine. Late last week, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky confirmed a growing escalation of the conflict in Ukraine’s Donbas region, and Russia has continued to build up troops near its borders with Ukraine. Is a full-scale war between the two countries possible? Will the United States intervene? And what will happen if Washington does decide to get involved? Meduza asked these questions to military experts and political scientists — and the answers we received were far from reassuring.

      • How to Avoid the Anti-Imperialism of Fools

        The last three decades have witnessed increasing political confusion about the meaning of anti-imperialism, a notion that, in and of itself, hadn’t previously been the topic of much debate. There are two main reasons for this confusion: the victorious end of most post–World War II anticolonial struggles and the USSR’s collapse. During the Cold War, the United States and allied colonial Western powers directly waged several wars against national liberation movements or regimes, along with more limited military interventions and wars by proxy. In most of these cases, Western powers confronted a local adversary supported by a large popular base. Standing against the imperialist intervention and in support of those whom it targeted seemed the obvious choice for progressives—the only discussion was whether the support ought to be critical or unreserved.

        The main divide among anti-imperialists during the Cold War was rather caused by the attitude towards the USSR, which Communist Parties and their close allies regarded as the “fatherland of socialism”; they determined much of their own political positions by aligning with Moscow and the “socialist camp”—an attitude that was described as “campism.” This was facilitated by Moscow’s support for most struggles against Western imperialism in its global rivalry with Washington. As for Moscow’s intervention against workers’ and peoples’ revolts in its own European sphere of domination, the campists stood with the Kremlin, denigrating these revolts under the pretext that they were fomented by Washington.

      • NRA’s LaPierre Used Mass Shootings as Excuse for Luxury Cruise on Friend’s Yacht

        Wayne LaPierre, the head of the National Rifle Association (NRA), revealed in a deposition released this week that he often sought refuge on a friend’s yacht following mass shooting events in the United States.

      • Biden Finally Lifts Sanctions Against ICC As Demanded by World BEYOND War

        Secretary of State Antony Blinken  states:

        “We continue to disagree strongly with the ICC’s actions relating to the Afghanistan and Palestinian situations. We maintain our longstanding objection to the Court’s efforts to assert jurisdiction over personnel of non-States Parties such as the United States and Israel. We believe, however, that our concerns about these cases would be better addressed through engagement with all stakeholders in the ICC process rather than through the imposition of sanctions.

      • Ramallah: A Stop and Start Life Full of Checkpoints

        This fatigue point has been reached incrementally over the years since the end of WWII, which ended with the Big Bang of our unnecessarily nuking the Japs to spite the Russkies. “Now I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds,” Robert Oppenheimer quietly noted.Gods of Death, as Freud, and others, figured we’d end up as. After WWI, newly discovered Middle East oil became the most prevalent source of world energy, leading to “skirmishes” for its wealth, after the breakdown of the Ottoman Empire. And the other major transformative event for the region was the Jewish demand, after WWII and the Holocaust, for a homeland — based upon historical precedence.

        The world has been delighted to watch the wilderness religions — Christians, Islam and Judaism — duke it out for millennia, like three irascible siblings each intent on domination. The Three Abes (they all derive from Abraham) have, individually or together, shaped the way the world has progressed economically, spiritually, militarily, and morally for at least 1000 years, going back to the Crusades. So, though we are fatigued with the whole lot of them, the Three Abes still hold our attention, and what happens in the Middle East today still has far-reaching consequences for our collective future. Arab oil, especially plastics and carbon emissions, has filthified the world, maybe beyond rescue. Tensions between Israel and its neighbors, especially Iran and Syria, threaten to act as a catalyst for apocalyptic destruction. In this still developing regional denouement with global consequences, the human rights violations in Palestine / Israel, that we hear about almost every day, just don’t move us; we no longer expect much to change.

      • Armed and Ignorant in the Land of the Free

        The Gun Violence Epidemic Continues

        We are still at it. On 16 March 2021, eight people were killed at three Atlanta, Georgia, massage palors, and on 22 March 2021, ten people were shot down in a Boulder, Colorado, grocery store. This is nothing new in the Land of the Free. Among the more notable victims of the nation’s love affair with deadly weapons have been Alexander Hamilton, Abraham Lincoln, James Garfield, William McKinley, John F. Kennedy, Robert Kennedy, Martin Luther King, Malcolm X, Ronald Reagan and, of course, John Lennon. Then there are the ongoing mass murders of which the March shootings are but the latest. For instance, 49 killed in Orlando, Florida, on 12 June 2016; 58 killed in LasVegas, Nevada, on 1 October 2017; 25 killed in Sutherland Springs, Texas, on 5 November 2017; 17 killed in Parkland, Florida, on 14 February 2018; 23 killed in El Paso, Texas, on 3 August 2019, ad nauseam. Indeed, “since the Columbine shooting in 1999, there have been 114 mass shootings with 1300 victims. … All of this happening in a country in which there are more guns than people and where laws are enacted that make it easier to buy a gun than to vote.”

      • Opinion | America’s Far-Right in Uniform

        Just how extreme are the soldiers in the U.S. military?

        It was around noon and I was texting a friend about who-knows-what when I added, almost as an afterthought: “tho they seem to be invading the Capitol at the mo.” I wasn’t faintly as blasé as that may sound on January 6th, especially when it became ever clearer who “they” were and what they were doing. Five people would die due to that assault on the Capitol building, including a police officer, and two more would commit suicide in the wake of the event. One hundred forty police would be wounded (lost eye, heart attack, cracked ribs, smashed spinal disks, concussions) and the collateral damage would be hard even to tote up.

      • Lokman Slim’s war: The life and mysterious death of a Western collaborator in Lebanon
      • New Season, New Beginnings at Creative Commons

        This past year has been full of change and challenges for all of us, and I’ve never been more grateful for (and amazed by!) the people that make up our CC community. 

    • Environment

      • Opinion | Any Bipartisan Approach With GOP on a Carbon Tax Is a Fool’s Errand

        We at Carbon Tax Center believe that removing climate deniers from the Climate Solutions Caucus could help rehabilitate carbon taxing in the public conversation.

        Barely twenty days after signing his $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan to provide pandemic relief and wrestle Covid-19 to a halt, President Biden this week unveiled a follow-on eight-year $2 trillion plan that he called a “once-in-a-generation investment in America” to repair failing roads and bridges, revitalize rail travel and freight, get rid of water-supplying lead pipes, and generally overhaul the country’s infrastructure.

      • Geoengineering researchers have halted plans for a balloon launch in Sweden

        But the committee has determined that the researchers should hold off on even the preliminary equipment tests until they’ve held discussions with members of the public in Sweden. David Keith, a Harvard climate scientist and member of the research team, said they will abide by the recommendations.

        The decision is likely to push the launch into 2022, further delaying a project initially slated to begin as early as 2018. It also opens up the possibility that the initial flights will occur elsewhere, as the researchers had selected the Esrange Space Center in Kiruna, Sweden in part because the Swedish Space Corporation could accommodate a launch this year.

      • Saami indigenous back down Gates-funded geoengineering experiment

        When Bill Gates $4.5 million investment in geoengineering research came to light in 2010, one of the scientists he put in charge of the project, Ken Caldeira, said the money was not funding any field experiments. But as the project has grown and moved to Harvard, that line was crossed. The Stratospheric Controlled Perturbation Experiment – SCoPEx for short – intends to release around a kilogram of calcium carbonate, essentially chalk dust, from a propelled balloon-gondola rig 12 miles up. Particles would cover the equivalent of 11 football fields and test the material’s potential to block a portion of solar radiation, countering the heat-trapping effects of carbon dioxide. The June test would not have released any particles, only tried out the rig’s technologies.

        Last December SCoPEx announced it was moving the rig test to Sweden because of the pandemic. It was to have been in Arizona and New Mexico. The new test site was to be Swedish Space Corporation’s launch center at Kiruna near the Arctic Circle, the Saami homeland. Trouble was, nobody had talked to the Saami or much anyone else in Sweden.

      • 2 environmentalists murdered in 1 week in Guerrero, Oaxaca

        The environmental organization Educa Oaxaca, which has fought large scale hydroelectric and mining projects, said that neither state nor federal authorities have taken preventative measures despite the killings of two citizens on March 14 and 15.

      • Frequent flyers should pay more to save the climate

        Wealthy frequent flyers who take several holidays a year should pay higher taxes each time they fly, a British charity says.

      • ‘We Have to Act’: Atmospheric CO2 Passes 420 PPM for First Time Ever

        “It is truly groundbreaking,” Greta Thunberg said of the growing concentration of the heat-trapping gas. “And I don’t mean that in a good way.”

        The concentration of atmospheric carbon dioxide surged past 420 parts per million for the first time in recorded history this past weekend, according to a measurement taken at the Mauna Loa Observatory on the Big Island of Hawaii.

      • Cooling the Planet?

        The planet-cooling scheme referred to as Stratospheric Controlled Perturbation Experiment aka: SCoPEx headed by Harvard professor Fran Keutsch hopes to save humanity from hothouse Earth with plans to sprinkle aerosols of calcium carbonate and other substances at 12 miles above Earth’s surface to reflect solar radiation to outer space. The initial flight scheduled for June 2021 was set to test the balloon and gondola equipment sans release of aerosols until later in the year.

        But heavy lobbying by prominent groups against the “alleged insanity” of toying around with the planet’s climate system put an end to this test run. Still, it’s an open question as to whether it really is insanity. Although, nobody knows for sure what consequences may follow. Nobody! On the other hand, civilization has been insanely altering the climate system by spewing carbon dioxide CO2 and sulfur dioxide SO2 into the atmosphere for years upon years. The question now revolves around whether SCoPEx makes it worse by trying to fix it? As such, is it the issue at hand? Answers: maybe and yes.

      • Energy

        • Electrifying US Buildings by 2050 Would Be Like Taking 65 Million Cars Off Road: Report

          “A new technological revolution is underway to replace fossil fuel heating and cooking with electric technologies.”

          Replacing fossil fuel-based heating and cooking systems with electric technologies in the majority of U.S. residential and commercial buildings over the next three decades would lead to a substantial reduction in greenhouse gas emissions—equivalent to removing 65 million cars from the road, according to a new study out Tuesday.

        • A ‘Just Transition’ Clean Energy Revolution Can Be a Boon for West Virginia—and the Country

          The United States is poised to embark on a clean energy revolution. President Biden has introduced an infrastructure plan that goes beyond roads and bridges. It would produce millions of high-paying jobs with a series of investments to mitigate the impact of climate change—such as installing electric vehicle charging stations across the country, retrofitting our homes to increase energy efficiency, and expanding capacity in renewable sectors such as solar and offshore wind.

          When the president unveiled his proposal last week, he spoke about a key philosophy guiding his plan: a mission to “ bring everybody along.” His bill centers on a framework known as “Just Transition”—which aims to create greater opportunity for marginalized Americans while building a greener, more sustainable economy. Perhaps no state in our country better embodies the potential of this approach than West Virginia.

    • Finance

      • Manchin Under Fire for Threatening to Block Infrastructure Bill Over Corporate Tax Hike

        “I think we need a grassroots movement that makes it clear to Joe Manchin… that the progressive agenda is what the American people want,” said Sen. Bernie Sanders.

        Senate Democrats late Monday received a green light from the chamber’s parliamentarian to pass additional bills through the arcane budget reconciliation process this year, good news for the party’s efforts to approve a multi-trillion dollar infrastructure package in the face of unified Republican opposition.

      • Opinion | Don’t Be Fooled, Corporate America Is Crushing the Working Class

        Today’s largest employers are Amazon and Walmart, each paying far less per hour and routinely exploiting their workers, who have little recourse.

        The most dramatic change in the system over the last half-century has been the emergence of corporate giants like Amazon and the shrinkage of labor unions.

      • Biden and the Democrats Are Getting Serious About Raising Corporate Taxes

        In a speech on Monday, Treasury Secretary Janet L. Yellen called for a global minimum tax on multinational corporations as President Joe Biden and leading Democrats defended a sweeping jobs and infrastructure proposal that analysts say would support a more equitable recovery from the pandemic by raising the corporate tax rate.

      • 73% of US Voters—Including 57% of Republicans—Back Biden’s $2.25 Trillion Infrastructure Plan: Poll

        A new survey shows that “every major aspect” of the Democratic president’s plan to rebuild the country has majority support, regardless of party affiliation.

        A new poll released Tuesday shows that a large, bipartisan majority of voters in the United States supports President Joe Biden’s proposal to spend $2.25 trillion over eight years to upgrade the nation’s physical and social infrastructure.

      • Biden’s $2 Trillion Infrastructure Plan Goes Beyond Bridges & Roads, But Its “Scale Is Inadequate”

        We speak with economist Darrick Hamilton, founding director of the Institute on Race and Political Economy at The New School, about how U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen is calling for a minimum global corporate income tax to help pay for President Joe Biden’s proposed $2.25 trillion infrastructure and jobs plan, aimed in part at combating the climate crisis and addressing racial inequities in housing and transportation. The plan includes over $650 billion for roads, bridges, railways and ports; $650 billion to expand broadband, retrofit homes and upgrade water systems and the electrical grid; $400 billion for “home- or community-based care” for the elderly and people with disabilities; and $300 billion for domestic manufacturing. “The good news is the conception of infrastructure has been expanded to include human infrastructure, as well as addressing the environment, beyond just traditional bridges and roads,” says Hamilton, but he adds the bill is still too small to properly address the economic problems facing the United States. “The scale of the problem and the size of the bill is incongruent.”

      • Senate Democrats Introduce Plan to Force Multinational Corporations to ‘Pay Their Fair Share’

        “That starts with ending incentives to ship jobs overseas and closing loopholes that allow companies to stash their profits in tax havens.”

        A trio of Senate Democrats on Monday unveiled a plan to force U.S.-based multinational corporations to “pay their fair share” by hiking the tax rate on companies’ overseas earnings, taking steps to prevent businesses from shifting profits to foreign tax havens, and eliminating other Republican-authored incentives for offshoring.

      • ‘Fire Every Board Member Then Fire DeJoy’: Lawmaker Fury Grows Over Postal Service Leadership

        “Instead of holding DeJoy accountable, the USPS Board of Governors confirmed what I always suspected was true,” said Sen. Tammy Duckworth.

        Democratic lawmakers issued fresh calls late Monday for President Joe Biden to remove all six members of the U.S. Postal Service Board of Governors to enable the ouster of Postmaster General Louis DeJoy after the board declared its “full support” for the Republican megadonor accused of openly sabotaging the agency.

      • How Corporations Crush the Working Class

        It’s no exaggeration to say that we’re now living in a Second Gilded Age. And today’s progressive activists may be on the verge of ushering us into a Second Progressive Era. They need all the support we can give them.

      • Janet Yellen calls for a global minimum tax on companies. Could it happen?

        Over the past decade, growing corporate-tax avoidance has met with a growing backlash. Breakneck globalisation allowed multinationals to replace fears of double taxation with the joys of double non-taxation, using havens to game the system. By exploiting mismatches between countries’ tax laws, taxable profits could be cut or even made to disappear. The game became easier with the rise of intangible assets, which can be shifted between jurisdictions more easily than buildings or machinery. Big tech has been a big beneficiary: the five largest Silicon Valley giants paid $220bn in cash taxes over the past decade, just 16% of their cumulative pre-tax profits.

        Numerous sets of talks aimed at resolving the problem have been held under the auspices of the OECD, a club of mostly rich countries. Progress, however, has been slow. Frustrated, dozens of countries—from Belgium and Britain to India and Indonesia—have introduced or proposed “digital-services taxes” (DSTs) on the local sales of foreign firms with online platforms. The Trump administration said these levies discriminated against American business and threatened tariffs.

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • Did Democrats Blow Their Chance to Repeal a Slew of Trump’s Regulatory Attacks?

        “Democrats get owned on regulatory issues day in and day out,” said one critic. “The problem is they didn’t want to do the work.”

        In recent weeks, progressive public interest organizations have identified—and implored congressional Democrats to repeal—dozens of former President Donald Trump’s last-minute regulatory attacks on consumers, the environment, immigrants, Social Security, and more.

      • Methods of Power

        The intellectual left reacted to Donald Trump’s election in 2016 in two very different ways. One group, like so many in the general public, immediately fell into full panic mode. The historian Timothy Snyder, for instance, rushed into print with a book called On Tyranny and in an interview declared it “pretty much inevitable” that Trump would follow Adolf Hitler’s example by declaring a state of emergency and staging a coup. Others urged caution. Snyder’s Yale colleague Samuel Moyn and Oxford’s David Priestland insisted in a New York Times opinion piece that “there is no real evidence that Mr. Trump wants to seize power unconstitutionally, and there is no reason to think he could succeed.” Trump, they claimed, was in reality a weak leader, despite his ability to exploit populist discontent. What was needed, they implied, was a focus less on his tweets and more on the neoliberalism and endless war that had provoked the discontent that brought him to power in the first place. The debates continued right through the 2020 election, with Snyder and many others continuing to warn of jackboots in the streets and Moyn and numerous other commentators insisting that the warnings themselves mostly worked to distract our attention from the staggering structural problems that the country faces.

        The events of January 6 might seem to have resolved the debate. Trump’s incitement of the Capitol attack was a treasonous crime. The ragtag rioters caused five deaths and put many other lives in danger. But what Moyn in these pages called a “parodic coup” (others dubbed it the “Q d’état”) in fact had no chance of delaying the certification of Joe Biden’s victory for more than a few hours, let alone of overthrowing the federal government.

      • Opinion | For True JCPOA Re-Entry, Biden Must Tear Down Trump’s Sanctions Wall

        Whether Biden will clear the minefield Trump has left behind will primarily be determined in Washington, not Vienna. It will require both political will and capital.

      • After Decades of Raking in Corporate Cash, McConnell Tells CEOs Mildly Defending Voting Rights to ‘Stay Out of Politics’

        “I have a feeling he thinks advocating for fair access to the ballot box is the only political act CEOs shouldn’t be engaged in,” said Congresswoman Ilhan Omar.

        After spending much of his decades-long career raking in corporate cash and combating efforts to limit money in politics, Republican Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell on Monday suddenly claimed to be deeply concerned by the political influence of “powerful and wealthy people” who have spoken out against the Georgia state GOP’s sweeping assault on voting rights.

      • ‘Deadly and Dangerous’: Biden Rebuked for Embrace of Trump’s Policy on Landmines

        “This is the wrong approach,” said the U.S. Campaign to Ban Landmines.

        The Biden administration was accused Tuesday of holding an ” indefensible” position after the Pentagon said landmines “remain a vital tool” in the U.S. military’s arsenal.

      • Sanders Says GOP Corporate Boycott Is Distraction From Voter Suppression Efforts

        As Republicans criticize large corporations like Coca-Cola and Delta Air Lines for their opposition to the recent Georgia voter suppression law, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont) has called out the Republicans’ criticisms as “extraordinary” and says that they’re attempting to distract the public from their war on voting.

      • Jayapal, House Dems Propose Constitutional Amendment to End Corporate Personhood

        The Washington Democrat said the proposed amendment “ends corporate constitutional rights, reverses Citizens United, and ensures that our democracy is really of the people, by the people—not corporations.”

        Reaffirming that “corporations are not people and money is not speech,” Rep. Pramila Jayapal on Tuesday led 50 members of Congress in introducing a constitutional amendment to end corporate personhood, reverse the Supreme Court’s Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission ruling, and “put power back into the hands of people.”

      • Arkansas GOP Condemned for Veto Override That Continues ‘Discriminatory Crusade Against Trans Youth’

        “This bill will drive families, doctors and businesses out of the state, and sends a terrible and heartbreaking message to transgender people who are watching in fear,” warned the ACLU.

        Defenders of LGBTQ rights denounced Republican legislators in Arkansas on Tuesday for overriding a veto by Gov. Asa Hutchinson just a day earlier that had been seen as a hard-won victory for the trans youth and other gender nonconforming people in the state.

      • Big Chickens in Georgia

        I remember the first time I heard about the Big Chicken. It was part of directions I received so many times, “if you see the Big Chicken you’ve gone too far,” or “turn left at the Big Chicken.” But it all made sense when I drove up on Cobb Parkway, the Kentucky Fried Chicken was a 40-foot-tall red chicken.

        There were more Peachtree streets in Atlanta than a person could count, and directions in Marietta did not make sense, but the Big Chicken was a landmark I could work with. It is an understatement to say people do things differently in Georgia.

      • Parliamentarian Rules Democrats Can Officially Bypass the Filibuster

        President Joe Biden and Democrats in Congress have reportedly won a major ruling from the Senate parliamentarian, granting them the ability to pass more of their agenda without the need to defeat a filibuster from Republicans.

      • Republicans Trip Over Themselves to Defend Georgia Voter Suppression Law

        After Major League Baseball (MLB) announced it would be moving its All-Star Game away from Georgia because of the state’s recently passed voter suppression law, Republicans began downplaying the law that many critics have called a rehash of “ Jim Crow .”

      • Baseball Says No to Jim Crow 2.0

        The Big Lie has been replaced by 50 little lies nestling in 50 different states. The Big Lie, of course, is that if only the presidential election hadn’t been stolen, then Trump would still be in office. That’s now playing out in statehouses around the country, with legislation aiming to suppress, primarily, Black voters.

        Nowhere has the lie been embraced with more gusto than the state of Georgia, the very state that was scrutinized by every GOP official for fraud after the party got its ass kicked in the last election. They found nothing, despite Trump’s felonious insistence that Republican officials manufacture some votes for him.

      • ‘We’re going to save’: Protesters rally outside Alexey Navalny’s prison, demanding that he get better medical treatment

        On Tuesday, April 6, the medical workers’ union “Doctors’ Alliance” led a rally outside Alexey Navalny’s prison, demanding that he receive adequate medical care. Navalny, who has been on hunger strike for seven days now, has complained about his health deteriorating in prison and was recently moved to a sick ward due to “signs of a respiratory infection.” Several hours into the rally, police officers began arresting both demonstrators and journalists, including Doctors’ Alliance director Anastasia Vasilieva and CNN correspondent Matthew Chance. According to regional police officials, the detainees were “violating public order.”

      • Nina Turner Brings in Massive Fundraising Haul in Bid for Ohio House Seat

        Progressive Nina Turner’s congressional campaign announced Monday that it brought in a nearly $2.2 million haul since the Ohio Democrat launched her candidacy in December, including $1.55 million in the first quarter of 2021.

      • Internet: Medium For Communication, Medium For Narrative Control — The Actors and Incentives: State Actors: PSYOP, Narrative Warfare, And Weaponized Tech

        In a total war the target can be individuals, civilians, organizations, groups, or governments. The audience needs to be well delineated and studied so that the message is appropriately formed, as we’ve discussed beforehand. There are four audiences to a message:

        The ultimate one, the real target.

        The intermediate one, which are likely to receive the message and could be part of the target audience.

        The apparent one, an audience that seemingly appears to be the target but isn’t the real intended one.

        The unintended one, which the planner didn’t intend to reach but still received the message.

        The receptivity, as we’ve kept saying, depends on many cultural and environment factors. However, in a military setting and with government sponsorship, vulnerabilities can be artificially created through means such as kinetic (bombs and guns), non-lethal biological weapons affecting human psyche and mood, and physical threats. The full environmental scope comes into play.

    • Misinformation/Disinformation

      • Alternative Facts

        Do not believe the videos That show assault and wrecking. The videos that Trump must have Show cops and Proud Boys necking.

      • Lying is as American as Cherry Pie

        I had to laugh. Mr. or Ms. Tillman was likely thinking of Donald Trump’s big lie that the 2020 election was stolen and perhaps of some other among many thousands of fibs told by the record-setting dissembler Trump.

        I don’t like lies or (I am guessing) Trump any more than R. Tillman but who is he or she trying to kid?

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • With No Coherent Policy Platform, GOP Flocks to Cries of “Cancel Culture”

        A long-dormant judicial volcano belched some smoke and ash into the morning breeze earlier this week, leaving some of the villagers below more than a little bewildered: Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas abruptly announced his support on Monday for broad and muscular government regulation of private business.

      • Russian court fines TikTok for failing to remove content allegedly encouraging teens to participate in unauthorized protests

        A Russian court has fined the video sharing platform TikTok for failing to remove content that allegedly incited minors to participate in unsanctioned protests in Moscow, reports the Russian state news agency TASS.

      • Another Day, Another Ridiculous NY Times Opinion Piece That Is Confused About Section 230 And Free Speech Online

        What is it with the NY Times publishing incredibly ridiculously wrong and confused articles and op-eds about Section 230? It’s gotten to the point that you have to think that they’re doing it on purpose. I’ve covered the NY Times getting 230 wrong (often in totally embarrassing ways) over and over and over and over and over again. And those are just examples from the past two years.

      • Techdirt Podcast Episode 277: Section 230 & The PACT Act

        We’ve got another podcast cross-post for you this week! Mike recently joined the Cato Institute Daily Podcast to discuss the PACT Act — the more “serious” proposal for Section 230 reform that is still riddled with problems that will do damage to the entire internet. Listen to the full conversation with Mike and Cato’s Will Duffield on this week’s episode.

      • Supreme Court Declares Trump First Amendment Case Moot, But Legal Issues For Social Media Coming

        Despite accepting a petition that avoids the Supreme Court deliberating on whether a president can block social media users, Justice Clarence Thomas on Monday issued a volley that may foreshadow future legal issues surrounding social media in the United States.

        On Monday, the Supreme Court sent back to a lower court and ruled as moot a lawsuit over whether former President Donald Trump could block followers on Twitter, after accepting a petition by the federal government to end the case because Trump wasn’t president anymore.

        The case dates back to March 2018, when the Knight First Amendment Institute and others brought a case against former president Trump in the Southern District of New York for blocking users based on their political views, arguing the practice is a violation of the first amendment.

    • Freedom of Information/Freedom of the Press

      • Russian catering mogul Evgeny Prigozhin wins another defamation case against Lyubov Sobol

        A Moscow district court has ordered opposition figure Lyubov Sobol to pay 500,000 rubles ($6,480) in compensation for moral damages, satisfying (at least in part) yet another defamation lawsuit filed against her by Kremlin-linked catering mogul Evgeny Prigozhin.

      • Populists are threatening Europe’s independent public broadcasters

        The problems in Slovenia and the Netherlands are typical of those that are increasingly facing public broadcasters all over Europe. In some countries, such as Hungary and Poland, illiberal governments are turning them into mouthpieces for the ruling party. In others, such as Germany and Sweden, populist movements accuse them of bias in favour of the establishment and the left. Modelled on Britain’s BBC (now facing political pressures of its own), Europe’s public media were set up to anchor democracy by providing citizens with objective reporting. But in an age of polarisation and disinformation, that is getting harder to do.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • Opinion | Women’s Rights Are Human Rights

        This fight against women’s oppression is not just a struggle for women, but for all of humanity.

        March 8, 2021, International Women’s Day, is an important day to recognize the challenges confronted and the great victories made by women around the world, especially in the past year of the Covid-19 pandemic.

      • ‘We Need Police-Free Schools’: Survey Finds 2/3 of US Students Want Cops Removed From Campus

        “Students deserve more than an education system that is hell-bent on criminalizing them instead of providing them with the resources they need to succeed.”

        More than two-thirds of students surveyed for a report published Tuesday by a coalition of community advocates say in-house police should be removed from schools, with large numbers of pupils also saying they feel unsafe around officers and many of the youth—more than 90% of whom were people of color—reporting being harassed or mocked by campus cops. 

      • Opinion | The Capitol Raid and Pandemic Can Help US Empathize With Venezuelans

        For Venezuelans, there is no one “January 6.” There are at least half a dozen.

        The January 6th raid on the Capitol and the pandemic that has upended the lives of every American seemingly have nothing to do with Venezuela. But the effects they had on U.S. political and economic stability offer a glimpse into what Venezuelans have been going through for the past several years of failed coups and sanctions.

      • Yulia Navalnaya shares letter from director of Navalny’s prison seeking her husband’s passport

        Yulia Navalnaya has reported receiving a letter from Alexander Mukhanov, the director of the prison colony where her husband, Alexey Navalny, is being held.

      • Biden Is Rebuilding the National Labor Relations Board

        On his first day in office, President Joe Biden fired Peter Robb, the Trump-appointed general counsel of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), the agency responsible for interpreting and enforcing federal labor law.

        Robb’s supporters protested that Biden had unfairly and illegally thrown him out of office 10 months before the end of his four-year term. In reality, Biden had ample legal authority for removing Robb, much of which is set forth in a legal memo penned by none other than Chief Justice John Roberts when he worked in the Reagan administration.

      • How Police Preserve Inequality in Los Angeles—and Everywhere Else

        The clash between police and protesters in Echo Park is a microcosm of our nation’s current economic system and the role that law enforcement plays to preserve it. A decades-long housing crisis in Los Angeles has steadily pushed growing numbers of people into the streets. According to the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority, there were 41,290 experiencing homelessness within city limits in 2020—a 16.1 percent increase from the year before. Over the past year, with the pandemic-related mass layoffs, resulting overdue rents and other bills, and a tenuous barely there safety net, that number has likely risen even more this year.

        Krithika Santhanam is an attorney and mass protest defense coordinator at the National Lawyers Guild of Los Angeles, which sent legal observers to the Echo Park protest to document any resulting police brutality. She explained to me in an interview that the police response on March 24 was “no different than the same sort of violent, militant response we continue to see over and over when it comes to large-scale, predominantly progressive protests demanding social justice.” Indeed, as this past year has demonstrated, regardless of location and issue, American law enforcement has applied violent police power against expressions of progressive dissent while openly tolerating or even abetting the preservation of a white supremacist capitalist order. The Echo Park sweep, taking place just as the high-profile trial of Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin for the killing of George Floyd began, is disappointingly typical of law enforcement’s role in policing the poor.

      • Priti Patel and the Death of Asylum in the UK

        With Brexit Britain feeling alone, it is time to resort to mauling targets made traditional during the 2016 campaign to exit the European Union: the asylum seeker, the refugee and anyone assisting in that enterprise.  And the person best suited to doing so is the Home Secretary, Priti Patel, who outlined the government’s New Plan for Immigration on March 24 th.  It has three objectives with one overarching punitive theme “to better protect and support those in genuine need of asylum.”  The authenticity of that need will be aided by deterring “illegal entry into the UK, thereby breaking the business model of criminal trafficking networks and protecting the lives of those they endanger”.  Those with “no right to be” in the UK will also be more easily “removed”.

        It is in the nature of such policies to conceal the punitive element by extolling virtues.  “The UK accepted more refugees through planned resettlement schemes than any other country in Europe in the period 2015-2019 – the fourth highest resettlement schemes globally after the USA, Canada and Australia,” reads the policy statement. “The UK also welcomed 29,000 people through the refugee family reunion scheme between 2015 and 2019. More than half of these were children.”

      • The UK’s Race Report has Fueled the Controversy It was Supposed to Lay to Rest
      • Defending The Indefensible: The Case For Keeping A Justice System That Fails Half The Population
      • The Significance of the NUMSA Appeal to the World for Mumia Abu-Jamal

        The South African press release called for proper healthcare for Abu-Jamal and all other prisoners who have tested positive for COVID-19. It stated that Abu-Jamal is a political prisoner whose “only crime is exposing the racist, capitalist justice system in the U.S. which for decades defended and supported the Apartheid government.”

        Importantly, NUMSA’s statement to the world ends with these words: “We urge our comrades locally and around the globe to join us in this just campaign to free Mumia.”

      • New York’s “Excluded Workers” Demand First U.S. Fund to Secure Pandemic Aid for Undocumented People

        More than a year into the pandemic and the economic crisis it generated, many workers continue to be excluded from receiving any government relief. These excluded workers include undocumented people — many of them in essential services — and people recently released from prison. Hundreds of essential workers across New York are leading marches and hunger strikes to demand lawmakers support a $3.5 billion fund that would be the first of its kind in the United States to provide pandemic relief funding to those excluded from the current system. Governor Andrew Cuomo is now in final negotiations with legislators on a budget bill that was due last month, which could issue payments to up to 275,000 people. “I truly believe that this is the job of government,” says Marcela Mitaynes, a New York assemblymember who is joining excluded workers in their hunger strike to push for pandemic relief and has called for a wealth tax to fund it. “We’re supposed to provide for our people. And this is a moment where we need to step up.”

      • Judge Says DEA, TSA Can Continue To Be Sued For Stealing Cash From Airline Passengers

        The DEA’s love for taking cash from travelers has gotten it sued. Again. In August 2019, DEA agents — working with TSA agents — took more than $80,000 from Rebecca Brown, who was carrying her father’s (Terry Rolin) savings through an airport on her way home to put it in a bank account he could use to pay for dental work and truck repairs.

      • EU Leaders Warn Erdogan on Human Rights Amid Progress in Talks

        European Council President Charles Michel and EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen met with the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Tuesday for talks on a reset in relations. After meeting Erdogan in Ankara, Michel spoke to reporters about the EU’s deep concern over human rights in Turkey.

      • DC Appeals Court Affirms Sidelining Of Attorney Larry Klayman, Who Attempted To Litigate Both Sides On Multiple Occasions

        Larry Klayman is a famous lawyer. Perhaps more infamous than famous at this point, but he’s a lawyer in every jurisdiction he hasn’t been sanctioned in yet. But fear not! Klayman will get disciplined wherever possible, if only to own the libs.

      • Arradondo Condemned Him, but All Cops Are Derek Chauvin

        Two weeks after Chauvin knelt on Floyd’s neck, nine Minneapolis City Council members took to a provisional stage in Powderhorn Park, just west of the Third Precinct building. Large white letters leaned against the stage, spelling out their plan: defund police.

        Floyd’s death under an officer’s knee quickly mainstreamed abolitionist thought by suggesting police reform is ineffective and insufficient. Floyd was not the area’s first high-profile police killing. Black Lives Matter activists organized locally and nationally around Jamar Clark’s death in 2015 and Castile’s death in 2016. By the time Floyd was killed, the MPD had already implemented many of the police reforms considered best practices.

        In the wake of George Floyd’s death, protests against police violence were met with militarized, aggressive police. In Seattle, police used tear gas multiple times—during a respiratory pandemic—before Chief Carmen Best temporarily banned it. In Minneapolis, public officials unleashed the largest police deployment in state history, during which officers shot rubber bullets and waged chemical warfare against citizens. Protesters suffered everything from eye trauma to brain injuries as a result.

      • “10 years for protest, 5 years for rape”: Demonstrators protest a policing bill in England and Wales

        Thousands of demonstrators marched across Britain on Saturday in protest of a massive new policing bill that would create new restrictions on protest in England and Wales and impose hefty fines for not following police instructions.

        The bill, officially known as the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill, was introduced in early March and has been met with widespread pushback in England and Wales since then. It also includes sentencing and court reforms, among other changes, but protesters are specifically incensed by proposed new police powers concerning protests.

      • How beauty filters took over social media

        Today, though, more and more young people—and especially teenage girls—are using filters that “beautify” their appearance and promise to deliver model-esque looks by sharpening, shrinking, enhancing, and recoloring their faces and bodies. Veronica and Sophia are both avid users of Snapchat, Instagram, and TikTok, where these filters are popular with millions of people.

        Through swipes and clicks, the array of face filters enable them to adjust their own image, and even sift through different identities, with new ease and flexibility.

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

      • Broadband Provider Wide Open West Tries To Justify Unnecessary Broadband Caps Using… Pizza?

        For a long time now, we’ve explained how broadband usage caps are bullshit. They serve no technical purpose on the network, and aren’t genuinely helpful in managing congestion. Their real role is several fold: one, they let ISPs charge US consumers (who already pay some of the highest prices in the developed world) even higher rates; two, they let ISPs falsely advertise a lower price than they actually charge; and three, they can be abused anticompetitively (exempting an ISP’s own streaming content from caps while still penalizing a competitor like Netflix).

    • Monopolies

      • Patents

        • Fatal comma error: EPO nullifies Boeing communication patent

          The US aerospace company Boeing and its European competitor Airbus have been fighting at the EPO for almost nine years. The disputed Boeing patent EP 1 798 872 protects a method for handling aircraft communications.

          The technology uses various transmission networks to communicate flight routes and other data. Not all transmission channels are always active. The system works with a preference list from which it identifies the network that is currently available.

          The patent was granted by the EPO in 2011; in May 2012 Airbus filed an opposition against the granting. In March 2016, the opposition division of the EPO revoked the patent and Boeing filed an appeal. The Board of Appeal 3.5.03 now dismissed this appeal (case-ID: T 1127/16).

          The question at issue was whether a feature of the claim 1 infringes Article 123(2) EPC. The claim contains three sub-features which are repeated word-for-word in an auxiliary request. But this time the first two features were separated by a comma, whereas number two and three were included in the same clause. This results in a different interpretation of the claim to that in the patent claim originally filed.

          The patent holder argued that, in case of ambiguity, it is necessary to interpret the claims in the light of the description and drawings. The Board of Appeal, however, rejected this.

          It stated that the description and the drawings have not automatically to be consulted when an ambiguous feature occurs in the claim, or where the claim as a whole includes one or more inconsistencies. According to the Board, the claim should essentially be read and interpreted on its own merits.

        • Working with users to improve the European patent granting process and patent documentation

          Three Working Parties of the Standing Advisory Committee of the EPO (SACEPO) met virtually in March, following the appointment of new members last January. Three different videoconferences were organised to gather user feedback from the SACEPO Working Parties on Rules, e-Patent Process, and Patent Documentation and Information.

        • FOSS Patents: Nokia receives patent royalties from Lenovo under license deal settling multi-jurisdictional litigation without proving Nokia owns any actually-essential H.264 patents

          Nokia just announced “that it has concluded a multi-year, multi-technology patent cross-license agreement with Lenovo. Under the agreement, Lenovo will make a net balancing payment to Nokia. The terms of the agreement remain confidential. The agreement resolves all pending patent litigation and other proceedings between the two parties, in all jurisdictions.”

          Lenovo defended itself pretty well against Nokia’s patent infringement lawsuits in the U.S., Germany, and India, and brought a FRAND action in the Northern District of California. Nokia had some success in the Munich I Regional Court, but the appeals court stayed the enforcement of an injunction. Another Munich trial was scheduled for July. Last summer, Nokia filed a complaint with the United States International Trade Commission seeking an import ban, but a decision on that complaint would still have taken some more time.


          As for forum selection, it appears likely that Nokia will continue to bet primarily on U.S. district courts, the ITC, the Munich I Regional Court, with other jurisdictions (such as India in this particular dispute) being given a try from time to time.

        • CVC Files Motion in Opposition to Broad Priority Motion [Ed: Nuts trying to patent life itself]

          In its turn, Junior Party The University of California/Berkeley, the University of Vienna, and Emmanuelle Charpentier (collectively, “CVC”) filed its motion in opposition to Senior Party The Broad Institute, Harvard University, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (collectively, “Broad”) motion for priority in Interference No. 106,115. CVC’s motion challenges Broad’s priority claim and the bases Broad set forth therein, rebutting Broad’s legal arguments and mentioning more than once that Jennifer Doudna and Emmanuelle Charpentier received the 2020 Nobel Prize in Chemistry (and by implication that the Broad inventors had not).

          CVC’s motion is based on two principles. First, as supported by deposition testimony of Dr. Luciano Marraffini (compelled by the Board’s grant of CVC’s motion to require compliance), CVC argues that Broad inventor Zhang derived the invention claimed in the patents-in-interference from disclosure of CVC’s conception from Dr. Marraffini. Dr. Marraffini was in possession of CVC’s invention because he was a confidential reviewer of the manuscript later published in Science as Jinek et al. (2012, “A Programmable Dual-RNA-Guided DNA Endonuclease in Adaptive Bacterial Immunity,” Science 337: 816–21). Dr. Marraffini also attended a CRISPR conference at Berkley on June 26, 2012 where the Doudna lab disclosed its CRISPR findings.

      • Copyrights

        • In-house: SCOTUS avoids ‘catastrophe’ in Google v Oracle [Ed: Copyright extremists funded by litigious law firms not happy with a decision that basically defended programmers and Fair Use doctrine]

          Sources from four technology companies reveal diverging views about the US Supreme Court’s decision to sidestep API copyrightability

        • Pornhub’s Upload Filter Blocked Over 100K ‘Pirated’ Videos in 2020

          Popular adult video site Pornhub has released a transparency report showing how it responds to problematic content. Last year, more than half a million pieces of content were taken down following DMCA notices. In addition, Pornhub also deployed an automatic upload filter that caught more than 100,000 videos before they went online

        • RIAA: Twitter Must License Music & Fight Piracy Without Charge

          The RIAA and NMPA are putting Twitter under pressure to do something about the platform’s piracy problem. Slamming the company for allowing pre-release music to be distributed to the public, the industry groups say that Twitter is failing to meet its legal obligations when responding to takedown notices. Licensing is the answer, they suggest, but that is just the tip of the iceberg.

        • Activision Once Again Abuses DMCA To Try To Bury Leak Of New ‘CoD’ Content

          Back in February of 2020, we wrote about several odd attempts by Activision to use the DMCA takedown process to try to bury leaks of content in its Call of Duty game franchise. It all started with the company attempting to first take down Reddit posts that showed leaked cover art for Call of Duty: Warzone, before Activision then attempted to have Reddit unmask the poster of the image in an attempt to track down where the leak came from. While Activision certainly isn’t the first company that has attempted to bury leaks using DMCA notices, it was a fairly high profile attempt, which, of course, just meant that the Streisand Effect took over and suddenly tons of people were seeing the image in media outlets reporting on the matter, such as at Techdirt.

« Previous entries Next Page » Next Page »

RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channels: Come and chat with us in real time

New to This Site? Here Are Some Introductory Resources




Samba logo

We support

End software patents


GNU project


EFF bloggers

Comcast is Blocktastic? SavetheInternet.com

Recent Posts