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04.29.17

Patent Snake Oil From Brunel University London and PatentDive

Posted in Europe, Patents at 10:21 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Things were working more or less fine before Battistelli, who is technologically illiterate, came

EPO Frame Breaking

Summary: The ludicrous notion of replacing patent examiners (or searches by humans) with machines is seriously considered by some who should know better… but don’t

THE EPO under Battistelli strives to replace examiners with machines. Anyone with a clue about science, i.e. not Battistelli, would immediately know that it’s bound to fail and it's already showing. This is what happens when politicians are put in charge of a patent office and anything a company like Google tells them they will swallow whole. They lack sceptical skills; their main skill is lying by omission, cleverly-worded non-denying denials and so on. This is why the EPO is in shambles.

The other day we spotted this snake oil from Brunel, which is advertised by stating: “A new computer tool is being developed by researchers at Brunel University London to help designers generate more innovative design solutions and avoid potential clashes with patent prior art emerging during a product modelling process.”

“This is what happens when politicians are put in charge of a patent office and anything a company like Google tells them they will swallow whole.”This is nonsense. Never mind how nonsensical patents on designs tend to be (just look what happens to Apple’s design patents at the SCOTUS and the EPO). There are many purely technical reasons why this won’t work and those who claim they can achieve this may as well just literally sell snake oil. In order to ‘automatically’ analyse patents one must grasp the semantics, use memory or deep knowledge of existing patents in a certain area, etc. That’s why there’s no substitute to highly experienced patent examiners in their respective fields. The more patents they have seen and become familiar with, the better prior art analysis (and reporting) can be carried out. It makes stakeholders happy. Crucial here is also lack of duplication, e.g. overpatenting. It’s a lot like peer review. A day or so later (after the above snake oil from Brunel) the following self-promotional nonsense got published as well. It says “PatentDive starts with an easy to understand assessment of what kind of patent an entrepreneur may need. Their are two categories, Appearance and Functionality. The platform explains that appearance dictates a design patent to protect the appearance and shape. If it’s functionality the startup is looking to protect, PatentDive points you towards a utility patent.”

“Will there be patents on patenting patent-generating machines? This can get recursive and outright ridiculous.”What we have here is proprietary software that would neither work nor save time. Last year there were many articles (dozens in English) about computer-generated patents and what these would mean (their total number, the assigned inventor and so on). We compared that to financial trading using algorithms — a growing ethical and practical problem in economics.

We worry that those who can fool the Battistellis of the world are so eager to replace people with machines (it’s profitable to the snake oil merchants) that they have completely lost touch with the purpose of patent systems and how these are supposed to function. Will there be patents on systems for filing patents? Or patents on patent-generating machines? Will there be patents on patenting patent-generating machines? This can get recursive and outright ridiculous.

This is How ‘Independent’ the Boards of Appeal Are Under Battistelli

Posted in Europe, Interview, Patents at 9:45 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Summary: A rather revealing new factoid about the interview that never happened (potentially contradicting a previous one with Battistelli), or why it did not happen

Links 29/4/2017: Endless OS, Pinebook, and New Mozilla Foundation Board Members

Posted in News Roundup at 4:28 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Desktop

    • Endless OS: A Unique Take on Linux That’s Perfect for New Users

      You may not have heard of Endless OS. It happens to be the platform that powers Endless Computers (which includes the uniquely shaped, Endless One). The operating system is not just limited to Endless hardware, though. In fact, you can install the OS on standard systems (or as a virtual machine) and discover a rather interesting take on Linux.

      This is not your traditional, über-flexible, do everything Linux distribution. Endless OS is something different—an operating system that is truly ideal for those wanting to break ties with proprietary systems, but don’t want to face a steep learning curve (or any learning curve, for that matter). Endless OS is likely the easiest operating system platform you’ll ever experience.

    • Pinebook – 1st review

      So I got the Pinebook 11 inch with arm 64 bits…..

      And what can I say, I am amazed with the quality of the construction.

      Very good plastics, better than some chromebooks and cheap windows netbooks.

      The mousepad is outstanding and work really nice.

      The keyboard, only has one problem!! The right shift. Probably I will remap the shift to the “/” position. I use and abuse right shift (i rarely use the left one), so this is very important to me.

  • Server

    • DevOps lab: Learn to use GitHub for infrastructure deployments

      This article is part of a series to help IT ops professionals learn DevOps by building a home lab. In the second step, Git version control allows ops to manage infrastructure as code.

    • IBM Advances OpenWhisk Serverless Vision

      The computing paradigm commonly known as ‘serverless’ computing isn’t for everyone, but it does have a place and plenty of opportunities for those willing to explore. IBM has its own serverless platform called OpenWhisk which first became generally available in December 2016.

      In a video interview with ServerWatch, Jason McGee, VP and CTO for IBM Cloud platform discusses the opportunities for serverless, event-driven computing and where the technology intersects with Watson cognitive computing and the application container revolutions.

  • Kernel Space

    • Linux Foundation Announces EdgeX Foundry To Drive Standardization Of Edge Computing
    • Graphics Stack

      • XWayland Picks Up Tablet Pad Support

        More feature work landed today in xserver Git for what will eventually become X.Org Server 1.20.

        Peter Hutterer, the lead developer of Linux’s input stack at Red Hat, has added support to the X.Org Server for handling tablet pads under XWayland.

      • Mesa 17.0.5 to Improve RadeonSI, Intel i965 and Vulkan Drivers for Linux Gaming

        Andres Gomez was pleased to announce that a Release Candidate (RC) milestone of the upcoming Mesa 17.0.5 maintenance update to the stable Mesa 17.0 series is out, giving us a glimpse over the new improvements and bug fixes.

        Mesa 17.0.5 should be available as soon as today, and it’s the fifth bugfix release in the series, coming about two weeks after the launch of Mesa 17.0.4, which added various improvements to the Intel OpenGL and ANV Vulkan drivers, as well as RadeonSI, Radeon RADV Vulkan, Nouveau, Galleon, and Freedreno drivers.

    • Benchmarks

      • Windows 10 Creators WSL vs. Clear Linux vs. Ubuntu 17.04

        Windows 10 Creators Update was released earlier this month by Microsoft as the latest installment to Windows 10. Since it’s been a few months since last benchmarking the “Windows Subsystem for Linux” (WSL), a.k.a. “Bash for Windows”, here are some fresh benchmarks of Ubuntu atop Windows 10 Creators Update vs. Intel’s Clear Linux vs. Ubuntu 17.04.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments/WMs

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

    • GNOME Desktop/GTK

      • A Simple, Straightforward Clipboard Manager for GNOME

        Clipboard Manager extension for Gnome Shell is a no-frills clipboard manager for GNOME.

        It adds an indicator menu to the top panel and caches your clipboard history. There’s nothing extra; no regex searching, or cross-device, multi-sync or pan-dimensional magic. Just a simple, easy to access clipboard history.

        I’ve never been a particularly big clipboard fan. I typically only need to access whatever I copy as I copy it.

      • First GNOME 3.26 Development Release Out, Some Apps Ported to Meson Build System

        GNOME Project’s Michael Catanzaro just informed us via an email announcement that the first unstable release of the upcoming GNOME 3.26 desktop environment is out now for public testing and early adopters.

        Yes, we’re talking about GNOME 3.25.1, the first development in the release cycle of GNOME 3.26, which is currently scheduled to launch later this year, on September 13. Being the first unstable release and all that, GNOME 3.25.1 doesn’t ship with many changes, and you can check out the CORE NEWS and APPS NEWS for details.

  • Distributions

    • [New but undated] Linux distros (Linux distribution)

      A Linux distribution — often shortened to “Linux distro” — is a version of the open source Linux operating system that is packaged with other components, such as an installation programs, management tools and additional software such as the KVM hypervisor.

    • Reviews

    • New Releases

      • IPFire 2.19 Now Supports On-Demand IPsec VPNs, Core Update 110 Is Now Available

        IPFire’s Michael Tremer announced today, April 28, 2017, the release of IPFire 2.19 Core Update 110, a new stable maintenance version of the open-source, Linux-based firewall operating system.

        Coming two and a half months after the previous point release, IPFire 2.19 Core Update 110 is here to implement support for on-demand IPsec (Internet Protocol Security) VPNs (Virtual Private Networks), which might just come in handy to those who deal with a huge amount of IPsec net-to-net connections on their infrastructures.

    • OpenSUSE/SUSE

      • [Tumbleweed] Review of the weeks 2017/13 – 17

        And all this happens in parallel to the openSUSE Conference being planned. You should think about participating! It is always informative, a lot of discussions happen in face-to-face meetings and, in openSUSE’s tradition, everybody is having a lot of fun. If you can plan a visit, you absolute should do so.

    • Slackware Family

    • Red Hat Family

    • Debian Family

      • Debian GNU/Linux 9 “Stretch” Just Around the Corner, Live Images to Support UEFI

        Debian Project’s Steve McIntyre and Jonathan Wiltshire just informed the Debian GNU/Linux community about some of the important aspects of the upcoming Debian GNU/Linux 9 “Stretch” operating system, whose launch is imminent.

        The first aspect, revealed by Debian developer Jonathan Wiltshire, is that the final release of Debian GNU/Linux 9 “Stretch” might not include Secure Boot support, which is no longer a blocker to launch the forthcoming OS. However, Secure Boot support could be implemented sometime during the lifetime of Debian 9.

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Ubuntu Devs Work on Rebasing Ubuntu 17.10 (Artful Aardvark) to Linux Kernel 4.11

            It looks like the Ubuntu Kernel team is back at work after taking a short break, and they recently published another installation of their bi-weekly newsletter to inform the Ubuntu Linux community about what to expect in the coming weeks.

          • Canonical Releases Snapd 2.25 Snappy Daemon for Ubuntu Linux, Here Is What’s New

            Canonical’s Snappy team, through Michael Vogt, announced today, April 28, 2017, the release and immediate availability of the Snapd 2.25 Snappy daemon for all supported Ubuntu Linux OSes, as well as other GNU/Linux distributions.

          • Flavours and Variants

            • Linux Mint-using terror nerd awaits sentence for training Islamic State

              A paranoid Welsh Muslim who wore gloves while typing on his laptop, admitted being part of Islamic State, and, gasp, harbored a copy of Linux Mint, has been described as a “new and dangerous breed of terrorist.”

              Samata Ullah, 34, who also used voice modulation software to disguise his thick Welsh accent while making instructional videos about encryption, pleaded guilty to five terrorism charges at Cardiff Crown Court. He was due to be sentenced Friday afternoon.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Glow LEDs with Google Home

      For the part one, the custom commands were possible thanks to Google Actions Apis. I used API.AI for my purpose since they had good documentation. I wont go into detail explaining the form fields in Api.ai, they have done a good job with documentation and explaining part, I will just share my configurations screenshot for your quick reference and understanding. In Api.ai the conversations are broken into intents. I used one intent (Default Welcome Intent) and a followup intent (Default Welcome Intent – custom) for my application.

    • Google Assistant SDK preview brings voice agent to the Raspberry Pi

      Google has released a Python-based Google Assistant SDK that’s designed for prototyping voice agent technology on the Raspberry Pi 3.

      Google’s developer preview aims to bring Google Assistant voice agent applications to Linux developers. The Google Assistant SDK is initially designed for prototyping voice agent technology on the Raspberry Pi 3 using Python and Raspbian Linux, but it works with most Linux distributions. The SDK lets developers add voice control, natural language understanding, and Google AI services to a variety of devices.

    • Huawei, Google create a high-powered single board computer for Android

      The Raspberry Pi is very popular with DIY enthusiasts because of the seemingly endless possibilities of how you can design devices with it. Huawei and Google have created their own single board computer (SBC), but this will probably benefit Android developers more than DIY enthusiasts. The HiKey 960 is a very robust SBC aimed at creating an Android PC or a testing tool for Android apps.

    • Huawei’s $239 HiKey 960 wants to be a high-end alternative to Raspberry Pi

      12.5 million sales in five years – Linaro and Huawei have unveiled a high-end (read: expensive) rival.

    • Phones

Free Software/Open Source

  • Is The Open Source Software Movement A Technological Religion?
  • Experts weigh in on open source platforms, market

    In this Advisory Board, our experts discuss the pros and cons of open source virtualization and which platforms are giving proprietary vendors a run for their money.

  • Light a fire under Cassandra with Apache Ignite

    Apache Cassandra is a popular database for several reasons. The open source, distributed, NoSQL database has no single point of failure, so it’s well suited for high-availability applications. It supports multi-datacenter replication, allowing organizations to achieve greater resiliency by, for example, storing data across multiple Amazon Web Services availability zones. It also offers massive and linear scalability, so any number of nodes can easily be added to any Cassandra cluster in any datacenter. For these reasons, companies such as Netflix, eBay, Expedia, and several others have been using Cassandra for key parts of their businesses for many years.

  • Proprietary Election Systems: Summarily Disqualified

    Hello Open Source Software Community & U.S. Voters,

    I and the California Association of Voting Officials, represent a group of renowned computer scientists that have pioneered open source election systems, including, “one4all,” New Hampshire’s Open Source Accessible Voting System (see attached). Today government organizations like NASA, the Department of Defense, and the U.S. Air Force rely on open source software for mission critical operations. I and CAVO believe voting and elections are indeed mission-critical to protect democracy and fulfill the promise of the United States of America as a representative republic.

    Since 2004, the open source community has advocated for transparent and secure—publicly owned—election systems to replace the insecure, proprietary systems most often deployed within communities. Open source options for elections systems can reduce the costs to taxpayers by as much as 50% compared to traditional proprietary options, which also eliminates vendor lock-in, or the inability of an elections office to migrate away from a solution as costs rise or quality decreases.

  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • New Mozilla Foundation Board Members: Mohamed Nanabhay and Nicole Wong

        Today, I’m thrilled to announce that Mohamed Nanabhay and Nicole Wong have joined the Mozilla Foundation Board of Directors.

        Over the last few years, we’ve been working to expand the boards for both the Mozilla Foundation and the Mozilla Corporation. Our goals for the Foundation board roles were to grow Mozilla’s capacity to move our mission forward; expand the number and diversity of people on our boards, and; add specific skills in areas related to movement building and organizational excellence. Adding Mohamed and Nicole represents a significant move forward on these goals.

        We met Mohamed about seven years ago through former board member and then Creative Commons CEO Joi Ito. Mohamed was at Al Jazeera at the time and hosted one of Mozilla’s first Open News fellows. Mohamed Nanabhay currently serves as the Deputy CEO of the Media Development Investment Fund (MDIF), which invests in independent media around the world providing the news, information and debate that people need to build free, thriving societies.

      • Why I’m joining the Mozilla Board by Mohamed Nanabhay

        Mozilla has been at the forefront of shaping internet culture and fighting to keep the Internet open. Being able to join the Board and be of service to that mission is an honor as the open internet played such an important role in my life and my work.

      • Why I’m joining the Mozilla Board by Nicole Wong

        It’s an honor for me to join the Mozilla Board. I’m so inspired by the Foundation’s mission and by the incredibly talented people that lead it. And, I’m looking forward to contributing to Mozilla’s plans to build out a leadership network focused on protecting the open Internet.

  • Pseudo-Open Source (Openwashing)

    • Microsoft SQL Server on Linux – YES, Linux! [Ed: Marketing and PR from IDG's "Microsoft Subnet"; This headline is a lie from Microsoft; something running on DrawBridge (proprietary Wine-like Windows layer) is not GNU/Linux]
  • Openness/Sharing/Collaboration

    • Creative Commons Is Resurrecting Palmyra

      Creative Commons launched its 2017 Global Summit today with a rather moving surprise: a seven-foot-tall 3D printed replica of the Tetrapylon from Palmyra, Syria. For those who don’t know the tragic situation, Palmyra is one of the most historic cities in the world — but it is being steadily destroyed by ISIS, robbing the world of countless irreplaceable artifacts and murdering those who have tried to protect them (the folks at Extra History have a pair of good summary videos discussing the history and the current situation in the city).

      Among ISIS’s human targets was Bassel Khartabil, who launched Syria’s CC community several years ago and began a project to take 3D scans of the city, which CC has been gathering and releasing under a CC0 Public Domain license. He was captured and imprisoned, and for the past five years his whereabouts and status have been unknown. As the #FreeBassel campaign continues, Creative Commons is now working to bring his invaluable scans to life in the form of 3D-printed replicas, starting with today’s unveiling of the Tetrapylon — which was destroyed in January along with part of a Roman theatre after ISIS captured the city for a second time.

    • Creative Commons: 1.2 billion strong and growing

      “The state of the commons is strong.” The 2016 State of the Commons report, issued by Creative Commons this morning, does not begin with those words, but it could. The report shows an increase in adoption for the suite of licenses, but that is not the whole story.

Leftovers

  • ‘Sheeple’ is now in the dictionary, and Apple users are the example

    Sheeple dates back to 1945, according to the dictionary entry, most likely as a derogatory term for helpless followers of consumer trends of the time.

  • Health/Nutrition

    • Retired GM worker speaks on three years of the Flint water crisis

      “I hate the use of the race card,” stated Gladyes emphatically. “If they can divide the working class, they can win. Snyder brought the Civil Rights Commission in here. They wore suits, got travel expenses, but what did Flint get? Nothing, only more division.”

      “Listen, white and black water faucets went out (of use) in the 1960s. When they say this is about color, no it isn’t. Those who say that are not looking, they’re blinking, they’re not seeing. This is not about color, it’s about harnessing and dividing a group a people. When you make them fight each other, then capitalism can just move right along and keep taking, taking and taking.”

  • Security

  • Defence/Aggression

  • Transparency/Investigative Reporting

    • Amid scandal, former CIA Director admitted that you can never really know what the CIA’s up to

      A formerly SECRET memo from the White House shows that not longer after Seymour Hersh published an expose in the New York Times about the domestic operations of CIA, President Ford met with his advisors to discuss the allegations. Joining him in the Oval Office was James Schlesinger, the Secretary of Defense and former CIA Director, along with Brent Scowcroft and other senior advisors. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss the history of the allegations, what to do, and what the investigation needed to look like.

    • Julian Assange Speaks Out: The War On The Truth

      Are Wikileaks and other similar organizations “hostile foreign agencies,” as CIA Director Mike Pompeo asserted recently? He’s looking at a way to punish media organizations for telling their readers the truth while being able to avoid going after the mainstream media companies that publish materials provided by Wikileaks. It is all about stripping some organizations and individuals from First Amendment protection. Don’t miss this exclusive Ron Paul Liberty Report with Wikileaks Founder, Julian Assange:

  • Finance

  • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

    • Facebook admits that political groups have abused it for propaganda purposes

      Political groups have been abusing your system to manipulate voters and stuff, and interfere with elections.

    • It’s Groundhog Day in Washington, With Trump Peddling the Same Old Reaganite Snake Oil

      The Gipper is long gone from earthly politics and Donald Trump is a pitifully inept substitute. He copied Reagan’s old tax schemes from the early 1980s without even giving credit. Trump is selling the same magical doctrine of “supply-side economics,” in which cutting tax rates was supposed to increase the government’s tax revenue. That didn’t happen the first time, of course, but it was a pleasing story and people liked to hear it.

    • Trump Diary 9: Black Blocs and U-locks

      Hillary Clinton easily won the vote of the overculture, while doing far worse than Obama among rural underculture groups. (African-Americans are the one underculture demographic on which the Democratics maintain a hold…for now.) Donald Trump did awful in the overculture, while winning enough of the underculture, particularly in Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Ohio, to prevail. So what I am discussing is not exactly an economic divide, not exactly a racial divide, and not exactly a class divide either, because the underculture in particular is composed of many wildly disparate groups who are unified only by their lack of national voice. If you opposed the Iraq War in 2003, you were part of the underculture. If you supported Donald Trump or Bernie Sanders in 2016, you were part of the underculture.

    • Mark Zuckerberg helps build pickup trucks at Ford plant [iophk: "on the campaign trail"]

      The trip was part of his New Year’s resolution to connect with more Americans and mend what he said were societal divisions wrought by technology and globalization. Zuckerberg has said he plans to visit and meet people in every state by the end of the year.

    • Trump’s first 100 days destroyed the myth that government should be run like a business

      Trump’s ineffectiveness has helped puncture a glib myth that dates back to the early 20th century on how market-tested business skills can solve the eternal plague of government inefficiency. Trump was elected to transform the establishment, but his disregard for how the game is played has ensured that, in many respects, it’s been left untouched.

      [...]

      Trump has proposed only 50 nominations for the top 553 positions of the executive branch, which means 90 percent of senior positions have not yet received nominees. But he doesn’t believe that’s a crisis — he thinks it’s a virtue.

  • Censorship/Free Speech

    • California Democrats Make Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day Disappear

      Monday April 24 was Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day and in Los Angeles thousands marched in the street outside the Turkish consulate. Up in Sacramento, ruling Democrats ignored the Armenians and instead held “Muslim Day at the Capitol,” hosted by the Council on American-Islamic Relations.

      “Trump reignites ‘spirit of justice’ for Muslim Day at Capitol,” headlined the news article in the Sacramento Bee, whose April 24 edition included not a word about the Armenians’ day. As CAIR’s Yannina Casillas explained, “The election of Trump and the campaign in general kind of reignited a spirit of justice within the community that was very much dormant. A lot of people are really interested in getting more involved.”

    • Bill protecting student journalists from censorship clears key hurdle

      A bid to guarantee First Amendment rights to student journalists cleared a critical hurdle on April 27 despite claims by some lawmakers that students aren’t responsible enough to handle them.

      But a critical final vote remains.

      SB1384 would spell out in Arizona law that student journalists have freedom of speech and the press in school-sponsored media, even if the publication is supported by the public school, community college or university, and even if the paper is part of a class.

      There would be some curbs against libel, unwarranted invasion of privacy, violations of law or creating “imminent danger” of inciting students to break statutes or rules. And the legislation even permits officials at public schools – but not colleges or universities – to block distribution if any of those limits are violated.

    • Muzzling The Benefits Of CBD-Rich Cannabis Is Censorship

      “CBD cannabis oil has become a really hot commodity lately.”

      So says Sal Chan, who works at the Green Panda medical marijuana dispensary in downtown Vancouver, which sells a variety of cannabis oils.

      In fact, CBD-dominant strains of cannabis are the new go-to remedy for medical marijuana patients who don’t want to get “stoned”.

      That’s because therapeutic forms of CBD-rich cannabis are now being bred to be virtually free of the mood-altering chemical, THC.

      Yet Canada’s federal government is refusing to let the nation’s legal cultivators of pharmaceutical-grade cannabis spread the word about the CBD-rich kind.

    • New Zealand creates new censorship category in response to controversy over 13 Reasons Why
    • 13 Reasons Why: New Zealand bans under-18s from watching suicide drama without adult
    • Netflix teen suicide series gets unique classification
    • Pressed into silence: West Papua, Indonesia & World Press Freedom Day

      Unfortunately, the Indonesian government’s record does not match its rhetoric, particularly in the eastern Indonesian provinces of Papua and West Papua (often known collectively as West Papua). These two provinces have faced serious issues: restrictions are placed on foreign journalists, while violence and discrimination against Papuan journalists and bribery are common occurrences.

      [...]

      Jayapura was obviously becoming a carbon copy of other major industrialized Indonesian cities. Sadly, all traces of Papuan culture had nearly vanished already. Through a massive and uncontrolled transmigration plan, hundreds of thousands of Indonesians had been relocated here. Dramatic demographic changes had occurred already: the Papuans had become a minority.

      So I decided to leave the city. And then the problems started.

    • Where Is ASEAN On Press Freedom?
    • Press freedom slumps again
    • New report from Index on Censorship paints a bleak picture for U.S. press freedom
    • It’s not just Trump: US media freedom fraying at the edges
    • US Detains Journalist For Exercising Free Speech

      US intelligence reporter Barrett Brown was arrested, again, on Thursday morning for criticizing the US government while appearing on radio interviews.

    • Barrett Brown Taken Back Into Custody for Talking to the Press

      Barrett Brown, famous “hacktivist” who spent four years prison in an arrest that started with his role in linking to some hacked {sic} documents online (though that investigation led to a video in which he was taken to be threatening FBI agents, another crime he was charged with) was taken back into custody today, according to D Magazine, for whom Brown had been working as a reporter.

    • A Global Threat to the Press

      Press freedom deteriorated in nearly two-thirds of countries of the 180 countries assessed in the past year, the organization’s report said. Worldwide, media freedom constraints and violations have increased 14 percent in the past five years.

  • Privacy/Surveillance

    • Sketchy Bogus Crowdfunding Campaigns To ‘Buy’ Congress’s Private Web Browsing… Only Now Realize That’s Impossible

      Look, we warned everyone about this. Right after Congress stupidly stripped privacy protections so that ISPs could more actively sell your data (and make it harder for you to realize it or do anything about it), there were a few crowdfunding campaigns that popped up on GoFundMe, claiming that they were raising money to then buy the web browsing data of Congress. We pointed out at the time that this was dumb and dangerous because you can’t just go buy someone’s web surfing data. That’s not how any of this works. But, you know, it was one of those stories that people just really, really wanted to believe, so apparently unaware of it being flat out impossible (more people should read Techdirt…), tons and tons of people donated tons and tons of money, without realizing there was absolutely no way these campaigns could do what they they claimed. The more well-known campaign, by a self-declared “privacy activist” named Adam McElhaney, ended up raising over $200k (despite others claiming that it looked like a pure scam). The slightly lesser well-known one, by actor Misha Collins, took in just under $90k. Between them, they raised about $300k… with promises of obtaining data that anyone with any knowledge of the situation would know they couldn’t obtain.

    • Tor 0.3.0.6 Revamps Guard Selection Algorithm to Resist Guard-Capture Attacks

      The Tor Project announced that Tor 0.3.0 is now officially the new stable series of the free and open-source software project designed to prevent government agencies from learning your location or Internet browsing habits.

      After being in development for the past several months, Tor 0.3.0.6 is now the latest stable version of the software, introducing a bunch of new features and improvements. The most prominent one being the revamp of the guard selection algorithm to better resist guard-capture attacks by hostile local networks.

    • Vault 7: CIA tool to track people through Word docs released

      WikiLeaks has released the source code and documentation for what it says is software used by the CIA to track documents written in Microsoft Word.

      [...]

      There is a limitation to the Scribbles system: if a document that has the watermarks in it and is opened in OpenOffice, LibreOffice the watermark images and URLs may become visible.

    • WikiLeaks Reveals CIA Tool ‘Scribbles’ For Document Tracking

      WikiLeaks released details on what it said is a Central Intelligence Agency document tracking program called Scribbles, part of the agency’s effort to keep tabs on documents leaked to whistleblowers and journalists. Scribbles allegedly embeds a web beacon-style tag into watermarks located on Microsoft Word documents that can report document analytics back to the CIA.

      WikiLeaks released information Friday about Scribbles as part of its ongoing Vault 7 Dark Matter release that began last month. Also released is what WikiLeaks said is Scribbles’ source code.

    • Scribbles

      Today, April 28th 2017, WikiLeaks publishes the documentation and source code for CIA’s “Scribbles” project, a document-watermarking preprocessing system to embed “Web beacon”-style tags into documents that are likely to be copied by Insiders, Whistleblowers, Journalists or others. The released version (v1.0 RC1) is dated March, 1st 2016 and classified SECRET//ORCON/NOFORN until 2066.

      Scribbles is intended for off-line preprocessing of Microsoft Office documents. For reasons of operational security the user guide demands that “[t]he Scribbles executable, parameter files, receipts and log files should not be installed on a target machine, nor left in a location where it might be collected by an adversary.”

    • Surprise: NSA Stops Collecting Americans’ Emails ‘About’ Foreign Targets [Ed: I am guessing the NSA will rely on another “eye” collecting it for the NSA]
    • NSA ends controversial program that searches Americans’ emails [Ed: But just because NSA says it does or no longer does something doesn't mean it's true]

      Details of the program were largely overlooked when it was first disclosed in documents leaked by whistleblower Edward Snowden in 2013. The leaks provided a small but critical window into how the US government carries out surveillance on Americans, who are largely off-limits thanks to constitutional protections.

      The program allows the NSA to collect and search the emails and text messages to and from Americans who mention names, email addresses, phone numbers, or other kinds of details about foreign targets under government surveillance.

    • U.S. spy agency abandons controversial surveillance technique
    • The Email Collection The NSA Shut Down Has Been Abused For Years

      As was noted here earlier, the NSA surprised many people by shutting down its email collection. This collection was authorized by the FISA Amendments Act, which is due for renewal at the end of this year. Since the point the collection began, it was clear the NSA was also harvesting (inadvertently, it said) US persons’ communications.

      Ron Wyden, along with a few other lawmakers, has been asking the NSA for years to turn over information on this program — specifically, how many US persons had been swept up “incidentally” in the bulk collection. For years, the NSA has refused to do so, claiming it would be impossible to compile this information and, somewhat hilariously, claiming it would violate the privacy of those swept up in the collection to query the database for incidental collections.

    • NSA dumps spy program

      The US National Security Agency is stopping a program that collects communications between US citizens and foreign contacts.

    • NSA concedes violating surveillance limits and pledges curbs on US email collection
    • NSA ditches controversial aspect of its spy program
    • NSA ends controversial collection of Americans’ emails that mention foreign targets
    • The NSA will stop reading American emails that mention intelligence targets
    • NSA will stop illegally collecting American emails
    • NSA halts Section 702 ‘upstream’ collection
    • N.S.A. Halts Collection of Americans’ Emails About Foreign Targets
    • NSA cuts back on domestic spying after court pressure

      The US National Security Agency has backed down on one of its major surveillance programmes, announcing on Friday that it would stop collecting information from the US Internet backbone about foreign targets of interest, but only collect communications to and from those targets.

    • A Big Change in NSA Spying Marks a Win for American Privacy

      “NSA will no longer collect certain internet communications that merely mention a foreign intelligence target,” reads a statement from the agency. “Instead, NSA will limit such collection to internet communications that are sent directly to or from a foreign target.”

    • Amazon confirms advertising will become a ‘meaningful’ part of its business

      “Amazon is not only a platform for ecommerce, it is a huge research environment for users – figures from the second half of 2016 suggested that over half of US users begin product research on Amazon as an example. As such they own some of the most valuable advertising real estate out there and have access to some of the most insightful first party data on user purchases and behaviour. In an ideal world, Amazon will take this opportunity to accelerate their advertising capabilities – they really are a sleeping giant – and break the current duopoly of Facebook and Google”

  • Civil Rights/Policing

    • The Cup, the Martyrs and the Archbishop

      However, there is a good deal more to this story, none of it edifying except for the shining courage of two genuine latter-day heroes and martyrs to decency. The story is a little complicated but worth following. It wanders from the dusty, baking Pakistani field to the manicured lawns of Lambeth Palace.

    • The Rise of Vigilantism

      The mob that witnessed and participated in Mashal’s death was brainwashed using new media platforms. By reaffirming one another’s beliefs on social media, their moral conscience allowed them to watch a young man be tortured to death, and subsequently take a vow of silence. In their minds, they were just being vigilant.

    • PAKISTAN: Government adding fuel to fan religious violence

      Pakistan’s controversial blasphemy law does not clearly define blasphemy, but states that the offence is punishable by death. Anyone can file a blasphemy case, claiming his or her religious feelings have been hurt. The accused are often lynched, and lawyers and judges defending or acquitting them have been attacked. Rights groups say the blasphemy law has even been used to seize money and property.

      Blasphemy law has long since morphed into an anti-Shia and anti-Ahmadi tool for vendetta; causes of allegations vary from financial to revenge, having little to do with hurt religious sentiments. Allegations of blasphemy are usually based on rumors, spread with the intention of whipping up violence.

    • [Old] Sentenced to death for a sip of water

      Since that day I haven’t left prison.

    • ‘Seductive’ dress gets girl barred from chess tournament

      He said that the chief arbiter told the girl and her mother that the tournament director deemed that his student’s dress was “seductive” and a “temptation from a certain angle far, far away.”

    • Former member of Iranian women’s football team ‘banned from sport’ after being photographed without veil

      A former member of Iran’s women’s football team claims she has been banned from the sport after being photographed with her hair uncovered abroad.

    • Lauri Love Opens Up About His Fight Against Extradition to the US

      Lauri Love, the alleged British hacker {sic} facing extradition to the United States on multiple charges after the country accused him of breaking into top federal computer networks, will now have a chance to appeal his extradition to the UK’s High Court.

    • Sikh girl ‘abducted’ and ‘forcibly converted to Islam’ in Pakistan.

      In the remote village of Ghorghasht in Buner District of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, Priya Rani, a 17-year-old Sikh girl was on her way to school on Thursday when she went missing. Hours later, Muslim neighbors started knocking on her family home’s doors, congratulating her relatives of her marriage and her conversion to Islam. The parents, the siblings and the extended family – who all live under the same roof – were shocked.

      [...]

      But it was not easy getting the police to register such a case. “They kept saying it’s a matter of religion and now nothing can be done,” he adds.

    • MEPs increasingly back kicking Viktor Orbán out of EPP

      Center-right MEPs are so exasperated with Viktor Orbán defying EU rules that more and more are calling for his party to be kicked out of their political group.

      Until now, the European People’s Party, which includes the Hungarian prime minister and his Fidesz party, has largely kept its head down whenever Orbán has breached European norms.

      But many in the EPP view Orbán’s crackdown on the Central European University (CEU) as the last straw after a series of measures that went against the letter and the spirit of EU rules — from erecting fences against migrants through mounting an anti-Brussels communication campaign to passing a law targeting NGOs that receive foreign funding.

      “We had sympathy for Fidesz, a sister party which did things a bit differently than we did,” said Frank Engel, a Luxembourgish MEP from the EPP. “Now we think that the best thing they could do is just leave the EPP.”

    • CIA tried to create ‘spy cat’ using implanted microphones to snoop on Russians

      The CIA once implanted microphones in a cat as part of a bizarre Cold War plot to spy on the Soviets, reveal declassified documents.

      The report details how ‘pioneering’ scientists surgically implanted a wire along the cat’s spine, using its tail as an antenna, while a microphone was planted inside its ear canal.

      A transmitter and power supply was sewn into the unlucky cat’s chest.

    • Amos Yee asylum appeal ‘likely to be expedited’: Lawyer

      The appeal against Singaporean teen blogger Amos Yee before the US’ Board of Immigration Appeals “will likely be expedited” as he remains in detention, a lawyer representing him said on Friday (Apr 28).

      In an email, Mr Christopher Keeler, a co-counsel for Yee from legal firm Grossman Law, told Channel NewsAsia that the US government appealed immigration judge Samuel Cole’s ruling to grant the teen asylum there. It was filed on Apr 4 – within the 30-day window after the initial ruling was made, he added.

    • Amos Yee’s lawyer: Asylum appeal likely to be expedited

      Singaporean Blogger Amos Yee’s appeal to the US’ Board of Immigration Appeals will likely be expedited, a lawyer representing him said on Friday (28 Apr).

      Channel NewsAsia (CNA) wrote, Mr Christopher Keeler, a co-counsel for Yee from legal firm Grossman Law, told in an email to CNA that the US government appeal to the immigration judge Samuel Cole’s ruling which grants the teen asylum in the US was filed on 4 Apr, within the 30-day window after the initial ruling on 24 March was made.

  • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

  • DRM

    • An open letter on DRM to the inventor of the web, from the inventor of net neutrality

      This is a live issue, too, because the W3C just held the most contentious vote in its decades-long history, on whether to publish a DRM standard for the web without any of the proposed legal protections for companies that create the kinds of competing products and services that the law permits, except when DRM is involved.

      As Wu points out, this sets up a situation where the incumbents get to create monopolies that produce the same problems for the open web that network neutrality advocates — like Berners-Lee — worry about.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Want To Promote Breastfeeding? That’s A Trade Barrier, Says US Trade Rep

      The case for breastfeeding, and against formula milk, seems pretty clear. But a new publication from the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR), the “2017 National Trade Estimate Report on Foreign Trade Barriers” (pdf), begs to differ. As a post on the Public Citizen site explains, the USTR calls out several countries for promoting breastfeeding over formula as a “technical barrier to trade” that might harm the profits of US industries.

    • Legal war with Apple hits Qualcomm’s revenue projections

      Apple has filed lawsuits against Qualcomm in countries like the U.S., U.K., China, and Japan, accusing the chipmaker of using its dominant market position to overcharge licensing fees.

    • Apple Halts License Payments to Qualcomm in ‘All-Out War’

      “While Apple has acknowledged that payment is owed for the use of Qualcomm’s valuable intellectual property {sic}, it nevertheless continues to interfere with our contracts,” said Don Rosenberg, Qualcomm’s general counsel. “Apple has now unilaterally declared the contract terms unacceptable; the same terms that have applied to iPhones and cellular-enabled iPads for a decade.”

    • Copyrights

      • European Court Of Justice Tightens Screws On “Streaming”

        In a judgment this week, the European Court of Justice ruled that “the sale of a multimedia player which enables films that are available illegally on the internet to be viewed easily and for free on a television screen could constitute an infringement of copyright” (C:2017:300).

      • Mac DeMarco Tells Concert Goers To Go Pirate His Music

        We had just been talking about Ed Sheeran suggesting that piracy actually helped his career rather than hurt it, as well as his decision to go to bat against his label for a fan who covered one of his songs, but he’s not the only one out there who doesn’t see filesharing as the great music Satan the labels would have us believe. Artist Mac DeMarco announced on stage at Coachella that his latest album had leaked online. The instructions he then gave the concert-goers is not the norm amongst artists, to say the least.

04.28.17

Links 28/4/2017: Subsurface 4.6.4, GNOME Shell & Mutter 3.25.1

Posted in News Roundup at 11:06 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

  • GitHub open sources OctoDNS, new tool for managing DNS records

    The frailty of the DNS system became all too evident last year, when DNS host Dyn was hit by a major Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack that brought down large swaths of the internet. With the threat of DDoS attacks only expected to grow, experts urge organizations to build redundancy into their DNS services.

  • 10 Pioneers taking open source to the next level

    Open source changed the software game, introduced in the mid-1980’s but really making an impact in the late 1990’s and introducing a free, collaborative approach to software development.

  • Open Source MANO Supports Public and Hybrid Cloud Deployments

    The ETSI Open Source MANO (OSM) group today launched the second version of its open source code that includes new software-defined networking (SDN) capabilities and an Amazon Web Services (AWS) plugin to support public and hybrid cloud deployments.

    OSM, which aims to deliver an open network functions virtualization (NFV) management and orchestration (MANO) stack that can be implemented across different technologies, announced Release One in October 2016.

  • Events

  • SaaS/Back End

    • The Future of Big Data: Distilling Less Knowledge Per Bit

      Until recently, the word data didn’t require a modifier. But we passed a watershed moment when we started referring to big data. Apparently, that wasn’t a sufficient description for some chunks of data, because people grasped for bolder terms, such as humongous data. Sadly, now, it appears that we have run out of appropriate adjectives. And yet data keeps getting bigger and bigger.

    • OpenStack User Survey Indicates Growth in Most Sectors

      A look at the numbers released last week by the OpenStack Foundation from its ninth user survey should be of interest to anyone considering the platform as part of a cloud solution. The platform’s percentage of the overall cloud market remains level, at about two-thirds of the total clouds in deployment. That in itself represents a large increase in total deployments, as cloud use continues to rise. Add to that a rapid increase in proof-of-concept and test use, and it’s clear that OpenStack’s place in the cloud continues to strengthen.

    • 4 types of OpenStack Neutron networks you must understand

      If your OpenStack hosted virtual instances need network connectivity you’re going to have to create a network. There are multiple kinds of networks and in order to make the right choice you will need to understand at least two very important network attributes: ‘router:external’ and ‘shared.’ Unless you know what these attributes and their combinations mean, it will be difficult to make the optimal network choice.

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

    • News about the migration to ODF in Taiwan

      The migration of ODF keeps going in many different fields in Taiwan. Since 2016 the Ministry of Education in Taiwan entrusts the Information Service Association of Chinese Colleges (ISAC) and Software Liberty Association Taiwan (SLAT) with the task of promoting and migrating ODF/LibreOffice in universities in Taiwan. Among all the university, National Chi-Nan University (NCNU) is the earliest one, which started migrating LibreOffice since 2014 and has been working on it for three years.

      Then on April 20, 2017, a student from NCNU posted an article on Dcard forum saying that, according to her teacher, NCNU “Will not use Microsoft Office anymore due to the budget issue. LibreOffice will be used to replace Microsoft Office.” The student strongly questioned, “LibreOffice is totally unknown to everyone. I don’t know what the administrative staffs of our school are thinking about. Microsoft’s software is a very basic skill for enterprises to recruit people. This decision will make students lost their core competitiveness.”

  • Healthcare

    • Open source experts to VA: Keep VistA, it can be fixed

      While the resounding opinion is that the Department of Veterans Affairs should replace the proprietary VistA with a commercial EHR, perhaps choosing Cerner as the Defense Department did, that idea does not hold so true within the open source community.

      “When you look at the big trends in the IT industry, open source is used everywhere. In fact, some of the most successful mega IT systems have a significant open source component,” said Seong Mun, CEO of the Open Source EHR Record Alliance. “We believe it’s the right methodology to get to where we need to go.”

  • Pseudo-Open Source (Openwashing)

  • Funding

    • Cloudera’s IPO is overshadowed by a rival it won’t mention

      One of the original poster children of the big data software craze, Cloudera, is due for its long-awaited IPO this week. Sometime Thursday afternoon, its shares will price somewhere between $12 and $14 and will open for trading on the New York Stock Exchange the following morning, raising about $200 million in the process.

      Make no mistake, this IPO qualifies as what’s known in venture capital circles as a down round. Essentially the new investors are buying shares in a company that is worth less than it was during its prior funding rounds.

  • BSD

  • Licensing/Legal

    • Ignorance of open source law is no defense [Ed: uses fear of security and licensing issues to sell its services. Proprietary software is even worse in that regard.]

      While Open Source Software (OSS) has been around for decades, commercial software companies have had their traditional software design process flipped upside down in the last 10 years. When classic commercial software packages were first created years ago, there was very little third-party compliance that was required.

  • Openness/Sharing/Collaboration

    • Open Access/Content

      • Open source is the future of teaching

        The work of teaching in developing countries is often hindered by an absence of basic resources, a lack of infrastructure, as well as underfunding, corruption and sociopolitical instability.

        Given these realities, how can we develop teachers in a way that promotes quality education for all?

        Open education resources (OERs) are freely accessible, openly licensed materials that are available online for anyone to use in teaching and learning. They have the potential to build capacity by providing educators with direct access, at low or no cost, to ways in which they can develop their competence.

  • Programming/Development

    • Announcing Rust 1.17

      The Rust team is happy to announce the latest version of Rust, 1.17.0. Rust is a systems programming language focused on safety, speed, and concurrency.

    • Rust 1.17 Released

      Judging by the massive Rust fan base in our forums, those of you reading this will be delighted today about the newest version of Rustlang, v1.17.

    • SourceForge: Let’s hold hands in a post-CodePlex world [Ed: Microsoft Gavin needlessly interjects Microsoft into it. Like CodePlex was EVER relevant…]

      President Logan Abbott has said he’ll seek tighter integration between SourceForge’s tools and those of others – including giant rival GitHub.

    • Banks should let ancient programming language COBOL die [iophk: "easy money"]

      Despite the fact that three trillion dollars run through COBOL systems every single day they are mostly maintained by retired programming veterans. There are almost no new COBOL programmers available so as retirees start passing away, then so does the maintenance for software written in the ancient programming language.

    • Cross-platform development with Python and BeeWare

      If you want to develop for Android, you have to use Java. If you want to develop for iOS, you have to use Objective C. And if you want to develop for the web, you have to use JavaScript. Right?

      These may be the preferred languages for these platforms, but at the end of the day, mobile phones and web browsers are computing platforms, and with a little work, you can use any language you want. With the BeeWare suite of libraries and bridges, you can use just Python. And, you can use the same code to deploy on all these platforms.

Leftovers

  • ‘Today at Apple’ Sessions About Art, Music, and Coding Expanding to Every Apple Store in May

    “Today at Apple” will offer programs with more than 60 different hands-on sessions in creative skills. The free sessions, which have been offered at Apple’s flagship Union Square store in San Francisco since last year, will cover topics such as photography, videography, music, coding, art, and design.

  • Health/Nutrition

  • Security

    • Pros and Cons of System Update and Integrity Protection Schemes

      Given the increasing malware attacks against Linux-based IoT devices, there is growing interest in integrity protection schemes, as well as system update mechanisms that support over-the-air (OTA) field upgrades. At the recent Embedded Linux Conference, Patrick Ohly, a software engineer at Intel GmbH, Germany, who works on the Yocto Project and the IoT Reference OS Kit for Intel(r) architecture, surveyed both topics and explained how they interrelate.

      With attacks on the rise, embedded developers need a combination of proactive hardening with integrity protection schemes and regular system updates, among other security precautions. “Integrity protection ensures that your device only runs software that has been verified to be unmodified,” said Ohly. “But you can’t count on catching everything in advance, and there will be new vulnerabilities and attack methods, so that’s why you need system updates.”

    • Security updates for Thursday
    • nomx: The world’s most secure communications protocol

      I was recently invited to take part in some research by BBC Click, alongside Professor Alan Woodward, to analyse a device that had quite a lot of people all excited. With slick marketing, catchy tag lines and some pretty bold claims about their security, nomx claim to have cracked email security once and for all. Down the rabbit hole we go!

    • New Linux SSH Brute-force LUA Bot Shishiga Detected in the Wild
    • Hackers exploited Word flaw for months while Microsoft investigated

      To understand why it is so difficult to defend computers from even moderately capable hackers, consider the case of the security flaw officially known as CVE-2017-0199.

      The bug was unusually dangerous but of a common genre: it was in Microsoft software, could allow a hacker to seize control of a personal computer with little trace, and was fixed April 11 in Microsoft’s regular monthly security update.

    • Study Links Flawed Online Tutorials with Vulnerable Open Source Software

      German researchers have published a paper finding that developers do indeed copy and paste code directly into their open source software, which can lead to the introduction of security vulnerabilities if that code comes from flawed online tutorials.

    • Russian-controlled telecom hijacks financial services’ Internet traffic

      On Wednesday, large chunks of network traffic belonging to MasterCard, Visa, and more than two dozen other financial services companies were briefly routed through a Russian government-controlled telecom under unexplained circumstances that renew lingering questions about the trust and reliability of some of the most sensitive Internet communications.

    • Microsoft took so long to fix a Word flaw that someone blew the bloody doors off it
    • Warning: Cyber espionage, ransomware attacks a rising global threat

      The Verizon 2017 Data Breach Investigation Report reveals that cyber espionage is now the most common type of attack seen in manufacturing, the public sector and now education, with much of this due to the high proliferation of proprietary research, prototypes and confidential personal data, which are “hot-ticket items” for cyber criminals.

    • Open source IoT protects Mexican bank
    • Kali Linux can now use cloud GPUs for password-cracking

      Think passwords, people. Think long, complex passwords. Not because a breach dump’s landed, but because the security-probing-oriented Kali Linux just got better at cracking passwords.

      Kali is a Debian-based Linux that packs in numerous hacking and forensics tools. It’s well-regarded among white hat hackers and investigators, who appreciate its inclusion of the tools of their trades.

  • Defence/Aggression

    • Terror arrest near Houses of Parliament

      A man carrying knives near the Houses of Parliament has been wrestled to the ground by armed police and arrested on suspicion of terrorism offences.

      The man, aged 27, was detained as part of an intelligence-led operation on Parliament Street.

      A witness described seeing two knives on the ground, one of which he described as a large bread knife.

    • Armed police swooped on terror suspect as he headed for Downing Street with bag packed with knives

      A suspected jihadist carrying a rucksack packed with knives was heading towards Downing Street when he was dramatically arrested by armed police, security sources have told The Telegraph.

      The ‘lone wolf’ suspect had been under close surveillance when counter-terrorism officers ordered his immediate detention as he came within 300 yards of the gates of the Prime Minister’s residence.

  • Transparency/Investigative Reporting

    • CIJ Statement On Prosecution Threats Against Wikileaks

      The Centre for Investigative Journalism (CIJ) unequivocally condemns any renewed attempt by the United States government to prosecute or otherwise silence WikiLeaks, its staff or its editor, Julian Assange.

      As a charity that champions critical, in-depth reporting and the defence of the public interest, the CIJ came into being in 2003 to address a deepening crisis in investigative reporting.

    • News Conference at Department of Justice on Threats to WikiLeaks’ Julian Assange by Attorney General Jeff Sessions

      CIA Director Mike Pompeo recently called WikiLeaks a “hostile intelligence service.” Attorney General Jeff Sessions recently stated that Julian Assange’s arrest is a “priority” of the Trump administration. This has caused numerous individuals — with differing perspectives on WikiLeaks — to warn of a growing threat to press freedom.

    • Ron Paul To Interview Julian Assange Today On His Liberty Report

      Libertarian stalwart Ron Paul will broadcast an interview with Wikileaks’ Julian Assange today, following recent news of President Trump’s Department of Justice potentially pursuing criminal charges against the controversial whistleblower.

    • Police illegally obtained journalist’s phone records under new metadata retention regime

      The Australian Federal Police illegally obtained a journalist’s phone records under the Turnbull government’s new metadata retention regime, the agency announced on Friday.

      The breach took place as part of an investigation into a leak of confidential police material – and the incident will now be investigated by the Commonwealth Ombudsman.

    • CIA’s New “Mayor” Comes From Finance Firm, Not Intelligence World

      Brian Bulatao, a private equity investor from Dallas, is slated to become the No. 3 official at the CIA, according to current and former intelligence officials.

      The job has traditionally, but not always, been filled by career intelligence officers. It is not subject to Senate confirmation.

      The position has long been known as “executive director,” but CIA Director Mike Pompeo is changing the title to “chief operating officer.” The executive director has been called the CIA’s “mayor,” responsible for the internal workings of the agency that employs an estimated 20,000 personnel worldwide.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife/Nature

    • Yes, We Can Live Without Fossil Fuel

      On this blog, I’ve promoted use of renewable energy as possible, practical and efficient. Still, the doubters rail on about how it’s not even possible. Here’s the thing. A country that has depended on coal for more than a century managed to live without it for electrical generation for a whole day. Extend that. Multiply that. We get a whole world able to live without coal. Repeat, and we can do it for natural gas and oil too.

  • Finance

    • Mexican bank intervenes after woman, 116, deemed ‘too old’ for card

      She went three months without state support for poor elderly Mexicans after she was turned away from a branch of Citibanamex in the city of Guadalajara for being too old, said Miguel Castro, development secretary for the state of Jalisco. Welfare beneficiaries now need individual bank accounts because of new transparency rules, Castro said.

      “They told me the limit was 110 years,” Félix said with a smile in the plant-filled courtyard of her small house in Guadalajara.

    • Follow the money: how Microsoft evades the taxman

      Microsoft has used regional sales units in Ireland, Singapore and Puerto Rico to build up a cash stash of US$108 billion outside the US, according to court papers that have emerged during a case between the software giant and the US Internal Revenue Service.

      [...]

      The papers revealed in the IRS case showed that between 2001 and 2006, Microsoft had done a series of internal deals that took money upfront to switch the rights to code and other assets created mostly in the US to subsidiaries in Bermuda, Ireland, Singapore and Puerto Rico.

  • Censorship/Free Speech

  • Privacy/Surveillance

    • Tor 0.3.0.6 is released: a new series is stable!

      Tor 0.3.0.6 is the first stable release of the Tor 0.3.0 series.

      With the 0.3.0 series, clients and relays now use Ed25519 keys to authenticate their link connections to relays, rather than the old RSA1024 keys that they used before. (Circuit crypto has been Curve25519-authenticated since 0.2.4.8-alpha.) We have also replaced the guard selection and replacement algorithm to behave more robustly in the presence of unreliable networks, and to resist guard- capture attacks.

    • NSA Makes Pitch For Section 702 Approval While Its 702 Requests Aren’t Being Approved By The Court

      Section 702 — the statute that allows the NSA to collect internet communications and data in bulk — is up for renewal at the end of this year. The NSA, thanks to Ed Snowden, faced more of an uphill battle than usual when renewing Section 215 (bulk metadata collections). For the first time in its existence, the NSA ended up with a compromise (the USA Freedom Act), rather than a straight renewal.

      The Intelligence Community appears to be trying to get out ahead of straight renewal opponents. The Office of the Director of National Intelligence has released a Section 702 Q&A at millennial watering hole Tumblr. By returning its own soft serve questions with canned talking points, the ODNI is hoping to show just how lawful its upstream collection is.

  • Civil Rights/Policing

    • Police story differs from videos of man dragged from United flight [Updated]

      None of this is visible on the videos that passengers posted online. The videos show some type of skirmish and then an officer dragging the bloody man out of the plane to the backdrop of a passenger screaming about the ordeal. One video shows Dao saying, “No I’m not going. I am not going.” An officer responds, “Well, we’ll have to drag you.”

    • Formerly Imprisoned Journalist Barrett Brown Taken Back Into Custody Before PBS Interview

      Award-winning journalist Barrett Brown was re-arrested and taken into custody Thursday, the day before he was scheduled to be interviewed for a PBS documentary.

    • Barrett Brown Arrested for the Most Ridiculous Reason Ever

      They arrested him for giving interviews.

    • Ars Technica Live: Why it’s important to defend hackers, even the not nice ones

      It’s so important that anybody charged with a crime—regardless of what it is and regardless of who they are—has a lawyer fighting for them. It’s one of the most important things that we put in the Constitution.

    • Political correctness has gone mad

      The police, whose job it is to protect the public, stood by and watched and allowed the angry Muslims to carry on. Since then they have been allowing ‘angry Muslims’ to carry on with a number of things that would see non-Muslims jailed.

    • Does anyone really need to hear from Saudi Arabia about women’s rights?
    • Turkey arrests 1,000 and suspends 9,100 police in new crackdown

      Turkey has detained more than 1,000 people and suspended over 9,100 police in a new crackdown against alleged supporters of the US-based preacher accused of orchestrating the coup bid against president Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

    • Lauri Love Opens Up About His Fight Against Extradition to the US

      Lauri Love, the alleged British hacker facing extradition to the United States on multiple charges after the country accused him of breaking into top federal computer networks, will now have a chance to appeal his extradition to the UK’s High Court.

      Britain’s Home Secretary Amber Rudd authorized Love’s extradition last September, but Love’s defence argued that he would not be able to cope with a maximum sentence of 99 years in prison if found guilty in a US court.

      The US Department of Justice believes Love was part of a series of hacks on US systems that were carried out in retaliation for the arrest and subsequent suicide of internet activist Aaron Swartz, who had been facing up to 35 years in prison for downloading millions of academic journal articles so he could share them, flouting restrictive copyright laws.

    • Teen blogger Amos Yee placed on suicide watch in the USA
    • Amos Yee has been on suicide watch for the past 2 weeks in American jail

      Six months in fact, which in addition to the five months he has already spent there, means nearly a full year of imprisonment before he even gets another hearing.

    • Response To Facebook Video Of Murder Is The Call For An Actual ‘Godwin’s Law’

      Anyone familiar with internet culture will be familiar with Godwin’s law. It goes roughly something like this: the longer a discussion goes on on the internet, the higher the probability that a comparison to Hitler or the Nazis will be made. This axiom enjoys lofty status on the internet — so often have we seen its claim played out in threads and discussions.

      Godwin’s Law is, of course, not a real law. But there may soon be a real Godwin’s Law on the books, stemming from the murder of Robert Godwin Sr. and the subsequent video upload to Facebook of the murder.

    • Barrett Brown Re-Arrested For Giving Media Interviews Without Permission

      The weird, sickening persecution of Barrett Brown continues. Whether or not you like the guy (and every time we post about him, we hear from people who provide reasons why they dislike him), the way he’s been treated by our justice system is despicable. If you don’t recall, Brown is an award winning journalist, who certainly went deep with Anonymous and other online groups. Eventually that resulted in him being arrested and harassed by prosecutors for sharing a link. When the infamous Stratfor hacks were released, he shared a link to the files to get people to sift through them. Because some of the files included swiped credit card numbers, he was charged with “trafficking” in stolen credit cards. Oddly, right before trial — realizing how insane it was to charge him over this — the feds dropped the charges around linking, but pushed forward on other charges because he hid a laptop in a cabinet and (stupidly…) got angry at the FBI when they came to investigate. The odd part is that following a plea deal, the judge sentenced him to an astounding 63 months in jail — and cited the sharing of the link (again, those charges were dropped, but it sometimes appeared the judge didn’t realize that) to explain why.

    • Yemen: Joint Public Statement: Immediately release Baha’i man at risk of death sentence

      Huthi-Saleh authorities in Yemen should immediately and unconditionally release Hamid Haydara as he is a prisoner of conscience who is being held and tried on account of his conscientiously held beliefs and peaceful activities as a member of the Baha’i community, said Amnesty International and Mwatana Organization for Human Rights (Mwatana) today, after he was transferred to solitary confinement.

  • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

    • Republican-controlled FCC pushes for net neutrality takedown

      Full text of the plans will be available later today, with a vote planned for 18 May, after a public consultation. Unfortunately, with the republicans controlling both houses and the wire-wool satsuma at the helm, there’s a good chance this is going to pass.

      The main points, though, is that the internet will be reclassified as ‘Type I – information service’s, which means it’ll lose that safe status of, say telecoms.

    • Throttling of websites and online services might help customers, FCC says

      The FCC today opened the docket, titled “Restoring Internet Freedom.” Clicking “New Filing” takes you to a form for uploading documents, while an “Express” filing lets you write a brief comment without uploading a document. FCC Chairman Ajit Pai also released the draft text of a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) that will be voted on at the May 18 FCC meeting. There will be another three months for public comments after that preliminary vote, and the FCC will make a final decision sometime after that.

      It’s already pretty clear where this is going, though: Pai intends to overturn the 2015 net neutrality order, and the only question is whether anything will replace it.

    • 5 Things to Know About the Next Battle Over Net Neutrality

      What Is Happening? First, it helps to explain what net neutrality is: a concept that internet providers should treat all traffic they handle equally. The existing FCC rules ban ISPs from blocking or throttling content, or from favoring one type of website over another, in the way that traffic is delivered to the consumer.

    • Net Neutrality Under Threat as FCC Opens Doors to Internet Barriers

      ‘Our companies should be able to compete with incumbents on the quality of our products and services, not our capacity to pay tolls’

    • Over 800 Startups Tell FCC’s Ajit Pai Not To Kill Net Neutrality

      As we noted yesterday, FCC Chair Ajit Pai has officially kicked off his plan to kill net neutrality — and unfortunately did so by spouting debunked myths and fantasies about how much damage net neutrality was causing for investment. As we pointed out that, that’s complete hogwash. If you actually looked at what telcos and ISPs were spending it showed no impact from the open internet rules. And, really, why should it have changed investment plans? As we’ve noted, the rules had basically no impact on ISPs unless those ISPs were looking to screw over consumers. And if it harmed those ISPs’ investment plans, that doesn’t seem like a very big loss. Otherwise, the open internet rules just provided clear “rules of the road” for ISPs to treat internet data fairly and to not screw over end users.

      Either way, that’s not the only “investment” that Pai should be looking at. Because one of the other key aspects of having an open internet is the massive amount of investment that has resulted for companies that operate on the internet. Pai seems (bizarrely) exclusively focused on investment in the infrastructure (which, again, has not dropped despite his claims) and totally ignores all the investment layers above (which also helps funds the infrastructure). So, just as Pai is (wrongly) whining that net neutrality harmed investment, over 800 startups, from all 50 states, sent him a letter urging him not to get rid of the open internet rules (and, yes, we were among those who signed onto the letter).

    • Open Internet Advocates Vow to Fight Trump FCC’s Plan to Kill Net Neutrality

      Ten years of fighting for internet freedom, potentially out the window because Donald Trump was elected president and chose as his top telecom regulator a former Verizon lawyer who’s hell-bent on killing federal rules safeguarding net neutrality, the internet’s open access principle.

      That’s the prospect facing open internet advocates following Wednesday’s announcement that Trump’s Federal Communications Commission chief, Republican Ajit Pai, intends to dismantle the legal basis for the FCC’s landmark 2015 policy protecting net neutrality, the principle that all internet content should be treated equally.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • Australia Readies New Copyright Safe Harbor Consultation

        Last month Australia dropped plans to extend its copyright safe harbor provisions to include platforms such as Google, Facebook and YouTube. A little over a month later and the topic is back on the agenda, with the government announcing a new consultation aimed at encouraging the growth of the digital economy while protecting copyright holders.

      • Australia’s Copyright Agency Keeps $11 Million Meant For Authors, Uses It To Fight Introduction Of Fair Use

        In other words, schools and universities have effectively been paying to lobby against changes to Australian copyright laws that would be very much in the interest of themselves, the public, and writers, who could use copyright materials more freely under a fair use system. According to the Sydney Morning Herald article, the top three executives at Australia’s Copyright Agency are all paid around $200,000 a year to come up with these kinds of ideas. It would be interesting to know whether Australian authors consider that $600,000 well spent.

Kather Augenstein and Bristows Shift Attention to Germany in an Effort to Ram the Dying UPC Down Everyone’s Throats

Posted in Deception, Europe, Patents at 3:36 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Remember that Germany cannot (or won't) ratify until/unless the UK does

Down the throat

Summary: Down the throat, hopes Team UPC, the Unitary Patent system will go, even though Britain cannot ratify, throwing the whole thing into grave uncertainty

THE UPC is all about litigation. It’s about demoting examination and rewarding the litigation ‘industry’. This is what the EPO’s scandalous management has been eager to achieve, leaving even legislation to the litigation ‘industry’ and its tentacles. It’s horrible. It’s truly horrid. How it has gotten as far it has probably merits multi-volume books.

“Is the EPO eager to leave every business in Europe vulnerable and exposed to litigation from all around the world, including troll-rich (i.e. ethically-poor) countries?”Yesterday, the EPO spoke about the “Patent Prosecution Highway” (PPH) again, which is related only indirectly to the UPC. The puff piece (caution: link to the EPO’s Web site, which means the EPO can harvest IP addresses) was titled “EPO and Eurasian Patent Office agree to launch Patent Prosecution Highway” and it’s more of that Battistelli-style self-aggrandising nonsense.

Is the EPO eager to leave every business in Europe vulnerable and exposed to litigation from all around the world, including troll-rich (i.e. ethically-poor) countries? Because that’s what the UPC would achieve.

“Why does Team UPC hate democracy, accountability, public participation and rational patent law so much?”We recently showed that Team UPC was actively lying about what had happened in Germany. It may be doing so again, starting with Kather Augenstein in its scarcely-known ‘blog’ and also Bristows. They promote this in Twitter right now. Yesterday, Mr. Weber from Kather Augenstein could be seen sucking up to Bristows in comments about patent trolls which operate in the UK — something which Bristows too likes (it’s mutual, as Bristows mentions him too) and he tweeted more of his usual stuff, pretending that the UPC is inevitable (it's not at all), basically marketing for his employer, which uses the UPC as a marketing opportunity even if it’s a recipe for plenty of trolls in Germany (already a real and growing problem). “We hopefully we’ll [sic] all be much smarter (and working in front of the UPC) in one year,” he wrote.

Hopefully, eh? Not even hiding these antidemocratic desires anymore? Why does Team UPC hate democracy, accountability, public participation and rational patent law so much? They alienate themselves, all in the name of sheer greed.

United for Patent Reform Defends USPTO Director Michelle Lee From Attacks by the Patent Microcosm

Posted in America, Patents at 3:05 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

United for Patent ReforSummary: Michelle Lee is finally (if not belatedly) shielded by a bunch of large technology companies; The deep-pocketed industry finally steps in line with our position, which is usually when things turn out the way we advocate for

TECHRIGHTS has published over a dozen articles defending Director Lee (of the USPTO) from vicious attacks that include a smear campaign and false rumours. She does not deserve any of that. In many ways, she’s the opposite of the President of the EPO and she has contributed to great improvements in the system.

Watchtroll and its ilk, attacking Lee every week (sometimes more than once a week), played a big role in the attack on character and IAM too participated in these attacks on Lee. It’s despicable to watch and it serves to illustrate just how low the patent microcosm would stoop if it didn’t get its way. Big technology firms, as opposed to the patent microcosm (trolls and liars), support Lee. As even IAM admitted yesterday:

What has not been clear is just who tech’s choice might be, but earlier this week any doubt was cleared up when a large constituency of big name companies including Amazon, Facebook, Google and Samsung wrote to President Trump and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross urging them to leave Lee in place or appoint someone who will continue the work she has begun at the agency.

The letter was organised by United for Patent Reform, the advocacy group that has been pushing hardest for new patent legislation. As well as including some of the biggest tech companies, the signatories also include organisations representing builders, retailers and the auto industry.

[...]

Under Lee’s watch, the letter points out, the PTO has put a strong focus on improving patent quality through the Enhanced Patent Quality Initiative and via its oversight of the post-issuance review process. “Patent quality, which had unfortunately been neglected for too long, is finally being recognised as critical to the strength and success of our patent system,” the letter states. “We believe that the American economy would greatly benefit from [Lee’s] continued leadership or the leadership of a USPTO Director committed to the priorities she has instituted and championed,” it concludes.

Maybe IAM should stop meddling and spreading false rumours, promoting Randall Rader and so on. IAM has been a big part of the negative campaign it speaks of. IAM is a truly malicious entity (or entities) in every single way. Unless one is a detriment to the patent system, in which case IAM is a front…

04.27.17

Team UPC and CIPA Are Lobbying, Publishing Puff Pieces, and Rewriting the Law for Unitary Patent (UPC) Behind Closed Doors

Posted in Europe, Patents at 11:26 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

CIPA on UPC
View larger version

Summary: A collection of the latest news and views on the UPC, which is being lied about by those who stand to benefit from it and is probably going nowhere because Brexit means that the UK stays out, in which case it must be reset and pertinent ratifications done all over again

THE EPO‘s management is eager if not desperate to bring legal chaos to Europe (in the form of UPC), even if the public and businesses object to it.

So why did the UPC have some momentum? Well, Team UPC was pushing for it in private events where it habitually lied (for instance claiming that UPC was “for SMEs” — the very opposite of what’s true). Christopher Weber, for example, part of the litigation ‘industry’, ignored what didn’t suit his position and wrote: “Very little opposition to the UPC in the U.K.?”

“Despite political will & legal creativity, Brexit is end of UK in UPC.”
      –KlunkerIP, Munich law firm
No, not really. There is a lot of opposition among people who know what is going on. There is in fact this new petition titled “Reject the ratification of the Unitary Patent treaty by the UK and Scotland”. Someone from FFII started it and the summary states: “The Unitary Patent contain articles which refers to the supremacy of the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU), while politicians have promised to respect the democratic Brexit vote of UK citizens to leave the EU; The UPC court will provide case law in favor of software patents.”

KlunkerIP, a “Munich IP law firm reflecting on professional issues” (based on its Twitter profile), has meanwhile said: “Despite political will & legal creativity, Brexit is end of UK in UPC. #CJEU held only #EU states can make #UPC. #UK like #CH or #NO (fm)”

The supposed “political will” is due to mischief and lobbying from Team UPC, CIPA, etc. Someone from the patent microcosm has just selectively quoted in a tweet something from a new article: “Great quote in The Times UK IP supplement Raconteur “There may be a compromise and we’ll be allowed into the UPC th…”

“I thought it was a quite good piece as it states quite clearly that the UPC is incompatible with the CJEU not having jurisdiction in the UK after Brexit.”
      –Anonymous
We’ve decided to chase the source and see what’s behind it, knowing that Team UPC has turned lying into somewhat of an art form. We have produced a screenshot of this article (requires Flash and bloat to view otherwise) and it looks like News Corporation doing another puff piece for a stakeholder. “Not sure if you have seen this one,” one reader told us, but “look at page 3…”

Not News Corporation’s page 3 of The Sun…

Having just read it quickly, it looks familiar. It repeats a lot of myths. I asked the reader if there was “anything in particular” in that article that’s worth repeating, for it’s “full of lies” and it was published in association with CIPA, i.e. it’s lobbying. “I thought it was a quite good piece,” the reader told me, “as it states quite clearly that the UPC is incompatible with the CJEU not having jurisdiction in the UK after Brexit.”

“Team UPC does not want the public to understand what’s going on, for fear it might — gasp! — get involved.”Why didn’t Team UPC cite these passages then? Not convenient enough? Where is the coverage from IP Kat? Something about these serious issues? Well, Bristows’ virtual takeover of IP Kat seemed further cemented yesterday. Bristows, based on this nonsensical post, now speaks for “the entire IPKat team!” (direct quote)

In this post, Bristows' lobbyist also sucks up to Microsoft’s patent extortionist once again. Serial litigators who shake down companies for ‘protection’ money…

So anyway, why is it so hard to obtain accurate information about the UPC? Well, that’s a design flaw. Team UPC does not want the public to understand what’s going on, for fear it might — gasp! — get involved.

“It’s ‘laundering’ of law or abject hijack of law (stealing democracy) by those who want more litigation because they would profit from it at everyone’s expense.”Ever heard how lobbyists are writing laws on behalf of corporations? Watch what Team UPC is trying to do right now, based on this tweet and corresponding blog post from Louise Amar (part of Team UPC).

“The Preparatory Committee published the new draft rules of procedure,” it says, not quite noting who’s in this committee (it’s an embarrassment if not institutional corruption). It’s an “undemocratic procedure,” Benjamin Henrion (FFII) told them. They have detailed a list of changes to procedures, written by so-called ‘experts’ who are actually the wolves pretending to guard sheep. That in its own right should disqualify the UPC. It’s ‘laundering’ of law or abject hijack of law (stealing democracy) by those who want more litigation because they would profit from it at everyone’s expense. Letting these people write these laws is like allowing oil companies to compose environmental regulations which govern them.

China’s Suffering From Patent Maximalism Has Europe Forewarned

Posted in Europe, Patents at 10:54 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Related: ‘SIPO Europe’: The EPO’s Race to the Bottom of Patent Skills and Patent Quality

The Chinese Are Coming

Summary: The parasitic elements inside China — those that just want lots of litigation (even if from patent trolls) — are winning over, much to the detriment of the Chinese economy, and Team UPC threatens to do the same in Europe with help from Battistelli

THE direction China has taken with patents is worrisome. We have written about a dozen articles about it in the past few months alone. China is basically destroying itself with patent maximalism; those who envy China are patent maximalists from the West but never actual businesses.

According to IAM, a site of patent maximalists, China is now “a key patent litigation hub” and it “poses challenges for its companies” (that’s the headline alone). To IAM, this is probably a good thing; they probably think it sounds all lucrative and jealousy-worthy. “While new software patent rules and overseas cases like the recent Unwired Planet v Huawei decision were discussed,” IAM says today, “it was clear that one of the biggest issues companies are grappling with is China’s new IP court system…”

“China is basically destroying itself with patent maximalism; those who envy China are patent maximalists from the West but never actual businesses.”Well, patent maximalism necessarily leads to that. This, some believe, is why Battistelli wants patents granted at a mad pace — to feed his fantasy of a UPC! Who needs examination anyway when there are courts? Never mind if the innocent defendant might be forced to pay a fortune to prove his/her innocence. The plaintiff too can spend a fortune only to see his/her own patent invalidated by a court. That question was purely sarcasm by the way. Because examination is definitely needed. That’s the whole point of it.

Who benefits from the destruction of China’s economy at the hands of a gold rush of patents? Well, Patent law firms like this one, Reinhold Cohn & Partners, which today speaks of “Brighter Prospects For Patent Protection In China” (headline of an article by Rachel Lu and Ilan Cohn).

Based on the name of this firm, it’s not even Chinese. It’s just preying on the Chinese economy using patents.

“It’s just preying on the Chinese economy using patents.”Meanwhile, upon that lobbying event called “World Intellectual Property Day” (of WIPO), citing SIPO (eager for propaganda that creates more demand for it), published today by Chinese state media was this article stating: “Satisfaction to IPR protection rated 72.38 (out of 100), said the report issued by the Patent Protection Association of China, China Trademark Association and Copyright Society of China to mark the World Intellectual Property Day on Wednesday.”

This isn’t an actual study from an independent entity. This mirrors all those fake ‘studies’ and bogus statistics we so habitually hear about from the EPO. This is the Office where patents run like water and examination is merely a shadow of its former self. A lot of the talented people left, yet somehow (miraculously) so-called ‘production’ soared by 40% in one year.

“It certainly seems like everything to do with justice at the EPO has been outsourced, not necessarily to ILO (which the EPO’s management ignores anyway) but to a ruinous and non-existent UPC which Battistelli is so eager to make a reality that he lies, cheats, and breaks the law.”Watch this new press release titled “EPO intends to grant patent in microwave tomography”. It says “EUROPEAN PATENT OFFICE (EPO) INTENDS TO APPROVE (SO-CALLED INTENT TO GRANT) MEDFIELD DIAGNOSTICS A PATENT IN MICROWAVE TOMOGRAPHY,” but recent experience suggests that the EPO intends to approve just about anything, sloppily (or erroneously reject), leaving the courts (already understaffed and marginalised) to deal with the aftermath, just like in China. Here is another new press release [1, 2], this one about the USPTO. At the USPTO they at least have PTAB now and it's growing, unlike the appeal boards at the EPO. It certainly seems like everything to do with justice at the EPO has been outsourced, not necessarily to ILO (which the EPO's management ignores anyway) but to a ruinous and non-existent UPC which Battistelli is so eager to make a reality that he lies, cheats, and breaks the law. More on that in our next post…

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