The course covers the key issues in embedding Linux. Such questions as: why Linux, how to embed Linux, and how to measure and obtain real-time performance in Linux are examined. Taught by veterans in the field, this course provides an in-depth analysis of the subject. The course will be useful both for managers looking to identify correct tools and resources for their projects as well as developers looking to hone their skills before taking on a serious Embedded and Real-Time Linux project.
Open Source will definitely make a mark this year, what with Linux shaping the decade with some excellent contributions. Without doubts, Linux will play a big role in how the technology shapes in 2010 and the rest of the new decade.
While ATI R600 users only recently received OpenGL 2.0 hardware support within the open-source Radeon 3D stack and there is many more OpenGL extensions to be implemented just not for the ATI Mesa driver but the other DRI drivers as well, Brian Paul has published a document that lays out the current state of OpenGL 3.x within the classic Mesa core. This document lays out what core Mesa supports and not necessarily that any of the drivers are implementing the said support at this time. Granted, with Mesa not really being very performance-efficient at this time or capable of running most games, a majority of users will be waiting for the OpenGL 3.x state tracker for Gallium3D.
A couple of months ago when my Nokia N95 suddenly turned into a brick the inestimable James Whatley aka whatleydude was kind enough to loan me an HTC Magic running the new mobile OS from Google. I played with the device for about five minutes before proclaiming: For now, Nokia, you’re dead to me.
The bigger indicator of momentum for Android is the excitement it has generated in the semiconductor industry. EETimes reports that, in addition to chip companies ARM and MIPS, semiconductor design firms such as Aricent and Mentor Graphics have established special Android-focused businesses. Freescale Semiconductor is working on an Android-based netbook design, as is Qualcomm.
I think is time that Sugar Labs and Sugar developers to realize that the success or failure of Sugar does not depend on its ability to play YouTube videos. Not because is not important but because there is very little chance to penetrate this market dominated by Microsoft and Apple.
The OISF has released the beta version of the Suricata IDS/IPS engine: The Suricata Engine is an Open Source Next Generation Intrusion Detection and Prevention Engine. This engine is not intended to just replace or emulate the existing tools in the industry, but will bring new ideas and technologies to the field.
2009 has been an exciting and eventful year at the Oregon State University Open Source Lab (OSUOSL). This year marks our sixth anniversary of providing open source projects with world-class hosting and development services. I’d like to take this chance to look back on what we’ve done at the OSUOSL this year, and what we expect from next year.
Eben Moglen has a very interesting presentation on patents (including comments on Bilski) that was originally presented on Nov. 2, 2009. Software patents and business method patents have been a disaster for the U.S. and world economy, and he has some interesting things to say about how we got here (and how it could be fixed).
Because the patent system predates the APA, all potential harms to society from a patent are completely ignored during the patent examination process. If patents were individually considered as new regulations under the APA, such questions would need to be carefully considered. That’s an interesting point Moglen makes.
An application named TinkerCell has been developed in order to serve as a CAD tool for synthetic biology. TinkerCell is a visual modeling tool that supports a hierarchy of biological parts. Each part in this hierarchy consists of a set of attributes that define the part, such as sequence or rate constants. Models that are constructed using these parts can be analyzed using various third-party C and Python programs that are hosted by TinkerCell via an extensive C and Python application programming interface (API).
Last time I mentioned the INSPIRE system as an exciting development in high energy physics literature databases (no, that’s not an oxymoron). There’s another big change going on in that field next year, but this will be behind-the-scenes. None-the-less, it’s raised a lot of questions about the ownership and financial support of an important resource that is free to anyone in the world: the arXiv.
The e-print arXiv (pronounced “archive”) is a central repository of research articles in physics, mathematics, computer science, and quantitative biology. Since its inception in 1991 by theoretical physicist Paul Ginsparg, it has had a huge impact on the way science is done by providing free access to “pre-prints” of research papers.
President Obama declared on Tuesday that “no information may remain classified indefinitely” as part of a sweeping overhaul of the executive branch’s system for protecting classified national security information.
Behind this froth, what is plain is that China has once again asserted its determination to protect its own sovereignty whatever the issue, and is intent on doing things its way. Given its economic progress in the past three decades and the immediate effect of its huge pump-priming over the past 12 months in restoring growth (even if the second half of next year may prove more problematic), the leadership and the population feel pretty good about themselves. They are in no mood to take lessons, moral or otherwise, from the west.
In this context, the Shaikh case fits into a string of scratchy non-meetings of mind between China and the west over the last couple of months.
I’m watching a clip from Slumdog Millionaire on what looks like a standard netbook computer, a scene in which deep blue body paint gives way to luscious saffron-yellow cloth. The picture quality is fine, if nothing special. But then I push a small white button at the side of the display, and it does something I’ve never seen before: The backlight disappears, and the image turns black and white, remaining visible thanks to the overhead lights in the room. I hold up an Amazon Kindle by way of comparison. Both displays have the same crisp grayscale text I’ve come to expect from e-paper.
The Unix time(2) system call is “over the hill” at 40 years old today. The time(2) system call has dutifully told us how many seconds have passed since January 1, 1970. I use the day as my “birthday” on public websites in tribute. Please raise a glass of champagne tonight with me in celebration!
Telecommunications equipment vendor UTStarcom will pay a total of US$3 million in fines for violating U.S. bribery laws by giving employees of Chinese carriers free U.S. vacations that were reported as training programs.
UTStarcom, based in Alameda, California, reached a settlement with the U.S. Department of Justice in which it will pay a $1.5 million fine, the department announced on Thursday. In the settlement, the company took responsibility for the actions of UTStarcom China, the wholly owned subsidiary through which it does business in China, the DOJ said in a statement. In a related settlement on Thursday, the company also agreed to pay a $1.5 million penalty to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, the DOJ said.
I think 2010 is going to be the Year of Platforms. Not Snake-Oil-as-A-Service. Real honest-to-goodness heavy-lifting platforms. The stuff that makes it possible for everyone to have Everything-As-A-Service.
Some of you think that platforms are passe, so 2007. Some of you think that platforms are cloud-cuckoo-land, to be filed alongside the Paperless Office and the Paperless Loo. To my mind there’s something very William Gibson-ish about platforms: the future’s already here, it’s just unevenly distributed.
I’m getting a shiver of deja vu these days when I read the peak oil-related websites. Some are boggling over the fact that “global warming” got more attention than “peak oil” in the discussions over the recently-passed Energy Bill in the US, while others are simply furious that the American public (and these websites seem predominantly American in focus) isn’t taking peak oil sufficiently seriously. They’re particularly bothered that mainstream discussion of the idea, when it happens, often pushes the peak date out by ten to twenty years (or more), making it seem like a distant crisis at worst.
The New York Times reports investigators in the U.S. Congress at the Securities and Exchange Commission and at the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority have launched probes into Goldman Sachs and other Wall Street firms for deliberately selling risky structured securities to clients, and then betting on the securities failing.
The probes are looking at how Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, Deutsche Bank and other Wall Street firms profited off complex mortgage-based securities — known as synthetic collateralized debt obligations, or C.D.O.’s. Pension funds and insurance companies lost billions of dollars on such securities that they believed were solid investments.
McClatchy reporters have been digging into the shady offshore dealings of Goldman Sachs and what they found in the records of the financial-meltdown villain is as maddening as you’d expect.
According to the investigation, “Goldman peddled more than $40 billion in U.S.-registered securities … but never told the buyers it was secretly betting that a sharp drop in U.S. housing prices would send the value of those securities plummeting.”
When financial titan Goldman Sachs joined some of its Wall Street rivals in late 2005 in secretly packaging a new breed of offshore securities, it gave prospective investors little hint that many of the deals were so risky that they could end up losing hundreds of millions of dollars on them.
McClatchy has obtained previously undisclosed documents that provide a closer look at the shadowy $1.3 trillion market since 2002 for complex offshore deals, which Chicago financial consultant and frequent Goldman critic Janet Tavakoli said at times met “every definition of a Ponzi scheme.”
The documents include the offering circulars for 40 of Goldman’s estimated 148 deals in the Cayman Islands over a seven-year period, including a dozen of its more exotic transactions tied to mortgages and consumer loans that it marketed in 2006 and 2007, at the crest of the booming market for subprime mortgages to marginally qualified borrowers.
As flattering as it is, Mr. van Praag’s assumption that Greg Gordon produced his Dec. 30 story in six days is incorrect. In fact, he had finished reporting and writing the story, and it was being edited on Dec. 24 when The New York Times published “Banks Bundled Bad Debt, Bet Against It and Won,” that paper’s variation on the theme of McClatchy’s Nov. 1-4 series on how Goldman Sachs had bundled bad debt, bet against it and won.
When financial titan Goldman Sachs joined some of its Wall Street rivals in late 2005 in secretly packaging a new breed of offshore securities, it gave prospective investors little hint that many of the deals were so risky that they could end up losing hundreds of millions of dollars on them.
Apple appears to have blocked iPhone applications related to the Dalai Lama in its China App Store, making it the latest U.S. technology company to censor its services in China.
Those apps, which appear in most countries’ versions of the App Store, do not currently appear in the Chinese version. Another app related to Rebiya Kadeer, who like the Dalai Lama is an exiled minority leader reviled by China’s authorities, is unavailable in the China App Store as well. The apparent censorship comes after carrier China Unicom launched iPhone sales two months ago, making regulatory approval of the phone’s contents in the country necessary for the first time.
Poland is apparently planning to make its control of the Internet drastically stricter. heise Online Poland, the Polish sister website of The H, reports that the government is working on new legislation already. The new law would create a registry of websites to be blocked and force Internet service providers to hand over detailed user data to investigators, for instance.
For most bloggers and hacks, the end of the year is a time to look back at some of the best moments from the previous 12 months. But I’m a miserable bastard. So instead I thought I’d make a list of some of the low points for freedom and democracy in the UK in 2009. I’m thinking of those things which offend against the very notion of a free society; the kind people refuse to believe until you show them the proof.
Long-frustrated network neutrality advocates headed into 2009 with high hopes. After all, there was a new administration headed by a man whose campaign promises included the assurance that he would “take a back seat to no one” on the issue, a decidedly Democratic Congress and a general warming to the idea that unfettered access to content and applications on the Internet was somehow essential to the new economy and the sacrosanct rights of the First Amendment.
Facebook scam artists have closed out 2009 by snagging a prominent victim: Julius Genachowski, chairman of the Federal Communications Commission.
On Thursday at around 10:30 a.m., Mr. Genachowski sent his Facebook friends this puzzling message: “Adam got me started making money with this.” It was followed by a link to a Web page that is no longer active. The message blitz indicated that Mr. Genachowski’s account had been taken over by a malicious program that was using it to send out spam.
People keep showing me ebook readers that try to recreate the book experience with cute animations showing the turning of pages. But if you want to recreate the important part of the book experience, the part that keeps people buying books for their whole lives, filling their homes with treasured friends that they would not part with for love nor money, then we need to restore and safeguard ownership of books. When I buy a book, it’s mine. There’s no mechanism, not even in the face of a court order, whereby a retailer can take a book away from me, and yet Amazon—there’s the most extraordinary thing that they had to do in the United States—you’ve heard of course that someone put a copy of Orwell’s 1984 in the Kindle Store, and it wasn’t licensed for distribution in the U.S.—of course, Orwell is in the public domain outside the U.S., in copyright in the U.S.—and Amazon responded to this intelligence by revoking the book 1984 from its customers’ ebook readers. After they’d bought it, they woke up one morning to discover their book had gone.
January 1st of each year should be National Public Domain Day, when many different creative works enter the public domain, where they can be made useful. In years past, it was a regular occurrence as tons of creative works went into the public domain each year. Often this was by choice on the part of the copyright holder. That’s because copyright used to have a renewal requirement, and the vast majority of copyright holders found little reason to renew their copyright. In 1958-59, only 7% of book copyright holders chose to renew their copyrights, meaning that 93% of books that could have been covered by copyright were allowed to enter the public domain. The small number that did have their copyrights renewed were (not surprisingly) the books that were still huge commercial successes, whose authors and publishers wished to retain their monopoly rights.
The company’s internet strategy begins and ends with AOL. The thinking here is that AOL, with 24 million subscribers, has a natural customer base for Time Warner’s extensive music catalogue, as well as serious Internet expertise in house. Although MBI World Music Report lists Warner Music Group’s global market share as equal to BMG’s at 11.9 percent (tied for fourth), AOL was working to secure licensing rights from the other music titans.
Combined with Time Warner’s cable-modem Road Runner service, AOL also has control of fat pipes in the US. The reason many people didn’t use Napster is because it is slow and expensive. With control of broadband, subscription is that much more compelling.
Current US law extends copyright protections for 70 years from the date of the author’s death. (Corporate “works-for-hire” are copyrighted for 95 years.) But prior to the 1976 Copyright Act (which became effective in 1978), the maximum copyright term was 56 years (an initial term of 28 years, renewable for another 28 years). Under those laws, works published in 1953 would be passing into the public domain on January 1, 2010.
OK. I’m being mean. I know it. You know it. Barry knows it. But hey, it’s me. This is how I am. Still I feel kind of guilty. It’s like shooting fish in a barrel. Quite frankly I should just forget about Barry, and finish the article I started before Christmas on Canadian attitudes towards Climate Change.
But hell – I declare this ‘Beat up on Barry week.’ In my earlier articles about Barry’s writing (one) (two) I mentioned that I had spotted other inaccuracies, and here’s one:
Fung and Isohunt found liable for inducing worldwide copyright infringement
Like wow, man. Guilty of Worldwide Copyright Infringement! That’s bad. Really bad.
When Finnish filmmaker Timo Vuorensola came up with the idea for his movie Star Wreck, a parody of Star Trek, he knew that looking for conventional distribution would be futile. An amateur, science-fiction comedy with a miniscule budget — and in Finnish, to boot — would hardly be attractive to mainstream studios. So Vuorensola took matters into his own hands: he used a Finnish social networking site to build up an online fan base who contributed to the storyline, made props and even offered their acting skills. In return for the help, Vuorensola released Star Wreck in 2005 online for free. Seven hundred thousand copies were downloaded in the first week alone; to date, the total has now reached 9 million.
Sure we have all read posts about how the entertainment industry is trying to get changes made to existing copyright laws in various countries and the response has for the most part been a big *YAWN* and then it’s on to whining and gushing respectively over Twitter and Facebook. The problem is that the movement to gut existing copyright laws, being led by the US entertainment industry, is only a shadow of the real effort that will supersede any local country laws.
This is all being done behind closed doors where even government officials are being required to sign NDA (Non-Disclosure Agreements). Yes, NDAs on the creation of a new global treaty – something that has never been done before because laws and treaties are suppose to be open to public examination and input. This isn’t the case with the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) however.
So many middlemen insist on monopolies, we’ve forgotten we don’t need to grant them. They say that without a monopoly (aka “exclusive rights”) they have no incentive to promote and distribute. Actually a monopoly gives a middleman no incentive, because no one is competing with them. Take away the monopoly, and the middleman has to compete with other potential middlemen (including the artist). Then they have an incentive to work. Rather than monopoly, they succeed on the basis of expertise (theatrical distributors already know how to track, ship, and manage prints), innovation (finding better ways to meet customers’ existing desires and identifying new ones), and quality.
I type, LyX does the layout. Creating a PDF is painless. With eLyXer HTML creation is easy – and boy, does it look good. With LaTeX2RTF I can create those @#$% Word documents the whole world seems to be craving for. I written my entire 4tH manual with LyX, which is over 450 densely written letter-size pages – with graphics. No problem. Making references, bibliographies or a simple table of contents, it’s just a few quick clicks away. I fire LyX up, adjust the document properties and I’m away. I type the title, my name, indicate this is the “title” and “author” and begin my first section. Highlight the section title, indicate this is a “section” and off we go. That’s how you produce content. Needless to say that once you’ve put an image somewhere that it doesn’t move anymore – and certainly isn’t overlaid.
If you’re not going to stick with Windows, then jump ship in 2009 — after all, it’s now clear that Windows 7 won’t be a brand-new OS but simply a better Vista, so what are you waiting for? Plus, the next Mac OS X, Snow Leopard, will also be a continuation of the current OS, so there’s no reason to delay your journey down that path. Linux’s stability also argues for not waiting.
Once you run GIMP 2.7, you’ll notice that it will start up in the traditional multi-window interface. To switch to the single-window interface, go to the “Windows” menu and toggle “Single-window mode”.
Now that GIMP has the window mode of your choice, I hope the multi-window zealots and the single-window lovers can both rejoice about the wonderful, yet underrated program we know as GIMP.
As with a few other of my favourite Linux applications, Docky has an incredibly insightful and focused team who hare a passion for making Docky awesome – as proven by its breathtakingly fast development speed!
So after some cleanup we decided to upload these pics before new years starts. Development is going very fast thanks to the Zeitgeist Framework 0.3 series. This is not our final design and there are ofcourse some usability flaws. We welcome critics, praises and suggestions.
I spent some time looking at Childsplay and if you have small children, I think you should too. As soon as I started the program, it started to play it’s theme song and my 18 month old son came running, and he still comes running every time he hears that music. For most parents and educators, my review of this program could end right here, but I suspect that I should probably write a bit more.
Astrid is a to-do list manager on steroids. Astrid can be used to create tasks with notes, deadlines, reminders tags and priorities. Input is straightforward and reminders can be set in any form. Astrid can also sync with online site Rememberthemilk.com and prompts you with human-like reminders at regular intervals: “Let’s get this done”. Tasks can also record time spent on each of them so Astrid also acts like a time-logger for billing hours. If you have stuff to do then Astrid is the best at keeping you organised.
Scripting is handled in Wesnoth by WML, the Wesnoth Markup Language, which allows for building entire scenarios and campaigns.
Wesnoth is in a continuous change, with every new release bringing more features and gameplay innovation. The current stable release is 1.6.5, but soon 1.8 will be out, and it will include new unit portraits, WML (Wesnoth Markup Language) improvements, updated campaigns and more. 1.8 will also allow the user to directly upload user-made campaigns and scenario from in-game add-ons menu.
It’s hard to come up with an opinion about Arch, since Arch is what you make of it. I like that it gives so much control to the user when it comes to system configuration, but at times it feels like a little too much control. There are a few things that make you think “come on, does this HAVE to be manual?” but the developers are clearly just trying to follow the Arch philosophy of giving the user all the control. In particular, it would be nice to have tools like hwd and aurbuild as part of the system, or at least available for installation through pacman. That may happen at some point as packages in AUR have a chance to be worked into the community repo eventually. Overall I think I like Arch and pacman, and I can see how it would make a great choice for systems that should be kept fast and clean.
In spite of the holiday season, lots of new packages continue to trickle in Mandriva Cooker. Amongst the many updates, here is an overview of some important changes:
* GNOME is now updated toversion 2.29.4: The most important changes are in Nautilus. In preparation of GNOME 3.0, where Nautilus will purely be a file browser and won’t provide the desktop anymore, the file management part has been improved a lot. Upstream is now using browser mode by default (this was already the case in Mandriva) and made several UI improvements for it. The developers have added now an optional split view like Midnight Commander. Another useful change is that it’s now possible in GNOME to configure a background per monitor on a multi-monitor setup in GNOME. Also worth mentioning is the fast progress the Tracker document search engine is making since some time. I would recommend removing Beagle from your Cooker system, and switching to Tracker instead. Then by clicking on the Search button in Nautilus’ toolbar, you can easily search your files.
* KDE has been updated to the latest beta, which is version 4.4 beta 2.
Ubuntu Tweak 0.5 will come with a redesigned UI (but version 0.6 will suffer major UI changes), XFCE specific features and most importantly: the ability to fetch online database to keep the ppplication information up-to-date. That means that you will be able to keep your applications and sources up-to-date without updating Ubuntu Tweak.
The final solution that I can present is to use a Linux distribution such as Ubuntu Server (http://ubuntu.com). There are a great many tutorials throughout the Internet that will walk you through setting up Ubuntu as a server, and more specifically as a home server. Please know that this column lists solutions from least to most complicated, and Ubuntu will be the hardest setup of the solutions presented. At the same time, Ubuntu will also provide you with the most flexibility to do whatever you want with your own machine for little to no cost.
The company does reveal, however, that the device is powered by a 600MHz ARM11 CPU which can be overclocked to 800MHz thanks to a firmware update. Most interestingly, the V5 ships with Android, Ubuntu Linux and Windows CE 6.0 preloaded.
In 2009, the FreeBSD project had the misfortune of losing two long time contributors: John Birrell and Jean-Marc Zucconi. I chatted with John recently, during this year’s BSDCAN, so his death was all the more shocking. It forced me to recognize my own mortality and to consider what contributions from our lives remain after we pass away. Reviewing the heritage of FreeBSD it becomes clear that our work on this project takes on a life of its own. John and Jean-Marc’s efforts live on in FreeBSD.
“Linux is just a kernel.” It’s a commonly heard refrain amongst the arguments put forward by BSD Unix aficionados, and it is a true statement, but it is all too often abused to try to make a fallacious point.
The Mozilla folks can push people to upgrade to the next release Firefox in droves because it’s relatively easy to upgrade to the latest Firefox, and they have mechanisms in place to make that easy. But one shouldn’t expect that all technology adoption is going to happen at the same clip. Moving to a new OS or a new version of PostgreSQL or Python requires a lot of moving bits to be aligned correctly.
Dell customers are furious at the computer maker after it failed to deliver products in time for the holiday season, and instead offered a “Holiday Card” to place under their Christmas trees to replace undelivered gifts.
The movie studio fantasy was that we’d pay $20-$40 per Blu-Ray disk, but then Daddy was laid-off and that Blu-Ray copy of 8 Mile suddenly wasn’t THAT much better than the DVD version for half the price. Some people decided to wait while others gave up completely, leading to that $68 Blu-Ray player down at WalMart. Remember WalMart is the largest seller of DVD’s (and presumably Blu-Ray disks) in America and possibly the world. WalMart is such a Big Kahuna in the home video business that they can dictate prices pretty much to the rest of the market. I predict, therefore, that after Christmas Blu-Ray prices will crash to only marginally more than DVDs and maybe even the same.
As the government reviews how an alleged terrorist was able to bring a bomb onto a U.S.-bound plane and try to blow it up on Christmas Day, the Transportation Security Administration is going after bloggers who wrote about a directive to increase security after the incident.
TSA special agents served subpoenas to travel bloggers Steve Frischling and Chris Elliott, demanding that they reveal who leaked the security directive to them. The government says the directive was not supposed to be disclosed to the public.
At least two bloggers who posted the latest Transportation Security Administration security guidelines have received visits from the feds. One had his laptop confiscated and was served a subpoena. The other just received the subpoena.
In case you’ve been recovering from a massive holiday bender and haven’t viewed the news recently, on Christmas day a singularly inefficient Nigerian doofus attempted to blow up an airliner by setting his underpants on fire.
Obviously, this is all in reaction to the Nigerian man who attempted to bring down a plane coming into the U.S. And the TSA is going to do whatever it thinks is necessary to prevent further attacks of a similar nature. But the simple fact is that if the TSA was really this seriously worried about electronic devices, they could have banned them anytime since the attacks on September 11, 2001. Instead, they’re doing it more than 8 years later after a man apparently lit some sort of mixture of powder and liquid in his lap. How that relates to electronics, I’m not sure. This just reeks of a “well, we have to do something” move.
Senators John McCain (R-AZ) and Maria Cantwell (D-WA) have introduced a new piece of legislation in congress that would effectively bring back the Glass-Steagall Act, which would force the breakup of Citigroup (NYSE: C), JP Morgan Chase (NYSE: JPM), Bank of America (NYSE: BAC) and other large institutions that practice both commercial and investment banking.
After all of this, she went out and bought another Sony ebook reader. She noted that she would have gladly purchased a competing product “but would have lost access to the library she’s spent hundreds of dollars building up.” And there it is. The DRM tax at work creating serious lock-in and consumer problems. At least in this case, due to the publicity from Consumerist, Sony agreed to reimburse the woman, but you shouldn’t have to get a major publication to tell your story first to get that kind of resolution.
Things are looking tough for Netflix. The online rental service is trying to convince Hollywood studios to sell them the rights to more video content for their “Watch Instantly” streaming offering, but many studios still seem to be mad about Netflix’s deal with Starz last year. The Starz deal, which in one fell swoop added around 2,500 titles for streaming, allowed Netflix to gain access to newer Disney and Sony movies without asking for permission from the studios.
It’s yet another cool way of connecting with fans, and going explicitly against what copyright allows. It’s explicitly encouraging people to copy his work and even offering money to them if they do a good job.
Peterson is now suing Vedder and has filed papers in New York’s Manhattan federal court. The suit states, “Vedder altered certain key lyrics of ‘Hard Sun’… eroding the integrity of the composition.” Executives at Universal Music are also targeted in the lawsuit after allegedly licensing the track without his permission.
Why? Linux is ready for my desktop. It has been for years now.
Until the year of Linux on the desktop finally rolls around (if it ever does), stop worrying about it. Just keep on using Linux and free/Open Source software. Keep enjoying the flexibility and choice and freedom that you have with Linux.
And this brings us, finally, to Linux. Currently about a third of netbooks are being shipped with Linux globally and this should rise to a majority by 2013. This is the beginning of Linux taking over the low-end of ‘desktop’ (that is, ‘not server’) computing. What I think will happen this coming year is going to be a convergence of technologies that are going to result in that sub-$200 machine, and it won’t have Windows XP or 7 on it. But unlike the current generation of netbooks that are Intel Atom-based, these will run on ARM processors. Predictions include that 20% of 2010’s netbooks will have ARM processors and the amount will be over half by 2012. And while Google’s Android will be on some of them, Ubuntu stands to grab a large amount of the market with its 10.04 LTS release.
So, will 2010 be the year of ‘desktop’ Linux? I think yes, but in a way that I didn’t quite imagine in 2007.
2009 has been a rather interesting year for Linux, and 2010 promises to be even better. In 2009 we have seen the explosion of Linux in the mobile phone segment: Google’s Linux-based Android OS smartphones have blossomed, Nokia’s Maemo based N900 made geeks all over the world drool, Palm released a new linux-based OS for its smartphones, WebOS, even Samsung unveiled a new Linux-based OS for its mobiles called Bada.The year of the Linux Desktop, may yet be far far away, but there is no doubt that 2009 was the year of the Linux Mobile.
My Linux Odyssey for 2010 is going to be two pronged. One, as the control op here at the Linux Journal’s Virtual Ham Shack, I am going to start the process of converting my few Amateur Radio programs to Linux. One of the first programs I want to dive into is Xastir, the APRS program. My training is as a geographer, with a focus on cartography, so anything maps is right up my alley and I look forward to leveraging the abilities and capabilities of Xastir. Second, I am going to continue my focus on Linux, particularly in business, as we move through the year in my occasional posting in this space.
Win – Android’s Rise – With Chrome/Chromium, Chrome OS and other web related open source projects coming out of Google, it has been a good year for Google’s contributions. But the big win in 2009 for Google and for open source has been the rapid advance of Android as an operating system for smart phones and other mobile devices. 2008′s mediocre launch of the Linux-powered phone OS was surpassed in 2009 with a wide range of devices running the OS, new versions of Android and a rapidly growing developer community.
This prediction is one of the more certain to come true. With more and more powerful phone arriving on the market with the Android operating system and the netbook hardware gaining more power and more Linux-based options (Moblin and Chrome OS for example), the mobile space seems ripe for a Linux takeover in 2010. Of course there have been many who would argue that netbook sales have declined, it has been predicted that netbook sales will top 50 million by 2012. But to this I would suggest that (although I am not a huge fan) cloud computing is going to even further enhance the Linux netbook sales. Because the Linux operating system was made to be networked, it is a perfect candidate to serve as the operating system the cloud will reach out to.
Linux on cellphones is fast becoming popular and is being adopted by major manufacturers line Nokia and HTC. We have the revolutionary Nokia N900 running Maemo and the HTC Hero running Google Android. Both are Linux for smartphones and are highly customizable and developer friendly.
We hope to see more of these technologies in future. These two years of 2008 and 2009 have brought remarkable development for Linux and we hope to be nearing a better and a wider users base.
2009 will be looked at as the year that Android OS really took off. The first Android phone was released in October 2008, the G1, wasn’t really a big hit. A few of the early adopters, including me, picked it up. However, in 2009, things really boomed. More than a dozen devices were announced/released, covering both mid and high ends of the smartphone market. Most notably, the Motroloa Droid, was lauded by many analysts and was put right up there with the iPhone. By November 23rd, Android accounted for at least 20% share of the US smartphone market. Not a bad feat in one year.
The economy lingers on its sick bed, but Red Hat continues to prosper. At the rate Red Hat’s continuing to grow, I won’t be at all surprised to see Red Hat to become the first pure Linux play company to top a billion dollars in annual revenue in its next fiscal year.
It’s been over a year since I wrote about my conversion to a Linux based digital media environment, and since it’s the holiday season (or just after) I thought it was time to update the story, and describe some new Linux based devices I’m using that others might find useful.
In the original essay I spoke about converting all my physical CD’s to digital files into the patent-free FLAC (Free Lossless Audio Codec) format. At the time I was looking at the Sonos multi-room music system to play the files. I took the plunge and ended up buying a four room system last year. They aren’t cheap, but they’re the most robust devices I own. They never crash (and for a device as sophisticated as this that’s a real pleasure). I’ve owned televisions that fail more often than the Sonos boxes.
Linux is, for the average user, no easier nor harder to use than windows. It is more configurable and flexible than windows will ever be and this gives power users more of an opportunity to tweak and twiddle than their windows brethren. Those who don’t tweak and twiddle have the same computing experience with Linux that they have with windows. The caveat here is, of course, that they must use the operating system as it is designed to be used. You don’t drive a manual car like an automatic so to speak.
What does that tell us? That the trend toward mobile computer devices — smartphones, netbooks, etc. — is going to continue, and that the traditional PC desktop will be a niche technology by 2019. By 2005, computer vendors were making more money from laptops than desktops. In the last year, more laptops were being sold than desktops.
It won’t stop there though. Google, with its Linux-based Chrome OS, is pointing the way not just to making the traditional Windows desktop obsolete, but putting the whole concept of desktop-based computing in the junk pile. Google is taking a lightweight operating system, adding cloud-based applications and storage, and creating a world where any netbook or smartphone can do 95% of what most people do every day with a Windows-powered desktop.
It’s not just that this kind of Internet mobile computing is going to displace older-style desktops and bring entertainment to anyone, anywhere on any device. No — there’s a whole new set of services that will be taken for granted by 2019 that no current static computing device can duplicate. It will be a combination of LBS (Location-Based Services) and AR (Augmented Reality) that will transform how we use computers.
With LBS, your applications use GPS and related technologies to determine where you are at any given moment. Armed with this information, applications can tell such things as where the nearest subway or closest steak house is. The next step, which is already being taken, is to update that information in real time. So, for example, you’ll soon be able to know that your buddy is waiting for you at the coffeehouse two streets away.
LBS is already changing how we get around, and AR will take it one step further. Instead of looking at a map, you’ll be able to look at the world through your smart device’s camera viewer to see a virtual golden brick road to where your friend is staying. You can already use it in applications like SPRXmobile’s Layar Reality Browser 3.0, which can already serve as virtual tour guides with your Android, and soon your iPhone 3Gs phones.
This is a Live DVD – you simply place the DVD in the computer’s DVD drive and reboot the machine from it. When the machine comes up, you will be running Linux. Normally, the software won’t write to your computer’s hard drive unless you specifically ask it to.
The latest SafeSquid Linux version – ntlm-RC2.0, now supports NTLM authentication, or Single Sign On. NTLM uses a challenge-response mechanism for authentication, in which clients are able to prove their identities without sending a password to the server. This allows access to clients using Windows Integrated Authentication in Microsoft-centric Networks, without an authentication pop-up.
Now how many time did you have couple of photos and needed to do the same editing on them. It could be just resize or something other, but you needed to open every single one and repeat that action. Now there is one cool program for photo and batch, Phatch. You can do: resizing, adding watermark, text, shadow, rotate pictire, … But there is no crop, I needed it couple of time but isn’t there.
After a wonderful week in England with family celebrating Christmas, Erica and I flew home to the East Bay. We were sat at Heathrow having a cup of coffee and I was thinking of what I occupy myself with on the plane ride over. Unfortunately, Lernid hacking was out of the question as I had no net connection on the plane, so I got to thinking of something else. After some busy hacking time at 35,000 feet I am proud to show of the results of my labor: a little program called Acire.
I get a lot of questions as to how to make the GNOME desktop look better. This question can be approached from numerous angles: Compiz, Emerald, Metacity, Window borders, etc. I have covered Compiz here on Ghacks (see Compiz on Ghacks) as well as Emerald (see Emerald on Ghacks). But I have yet to cover the basic theming of the GNOME desktop. As of this tutorial, that will all change.
To understand the significance of these links, one must go back to 1997 when GNOME was set up by Miguel de Icaza and Federico Mena Quintero. The only rationale that they had for setting up a project to create a second desktop environment for a small number of users – KDE was a thriving desktop by then but it used a non-free library for development – was that it would be totally free.
GNOME was set up under the aegis of the GNU Project. The name says it all: the GNU Network Object Model Environment.
Ubuntu is an easy version of Linux. It is not windows,but it is almost user friendly like windows. No all applications have graphical interface. Many applications force users to use commands to run them.Commands are mandatory to work with Linux and Ubuntu is not an exception.
The Broadcom Crystal HD video decoder is a card that you can slip into a netbook to enable HD video playback on computer with an Intel Atom processor and integrated graphics. Broadcom has supported Windows since day one, and the Broadcom BCM70012 and BCM70015 cards play well with Windows media Player 12, Adobe Flash Player 10.1 beta, ArcSoft TotalMedia Theatre and CyberLink PowerDVD. Linux, on the other hand, has been a different story… up until now.
I’ve been using one such program, HyperSpace from Phoenix Technologies, on a Samsung NC10 netbook for the last couple of weeks, and even starting up cold, the speed is impressive. Press the power button and in 15 seconds the Linux-based HyperSpace presents you with a customizable screen including a Web browser, a notepad application, and RealPlayer media software, along with news, weather, and stock information. I jotted a quick note, watched videos on YouTube (GOOG), and made calls using Skype, all without launching Windows.
In 2009, mobile consumer devices including netbooks, e-readers, tablets, MIDs, PMPs, and mobile phones were increasingly dominated by embedded Linux or the Linux-based Android. LinuxDevices presents four updated showcases of story summaries for netbooks, phones, and other portable devices, recalls 2009 highlights ranging from the Kindle to the Droid, and looks in on new rumors about the Google Nexus One and Chrome OS netbook design.
Paul over at Modaco forums has managed to successfully root his Nexus One, running the latest Android 2.1 version on the said device. He has cooked a custom ROM for Nexus One with the method, which he is referring to as Superboot.
The hardware end of the netbook world was quiet, but the software side exploded with the release of the source code for Google’s forthcoming open-source, browser-based operating system Chrome OS. Within hours of release, enterprising hackers had managed to put together a working version that could be run in a virtualised window, so we had a play with it and found it to be a little lacking – just a browser window and nothing else. Hopefully Google can do a little better before it’s finally released in 2010.
New Year predictions are of course a licence to speculate. What’s more the normal boundaries of sanity are loosened sufficiently to make the predictions fun rather than libellous.
‘Predictions’ in the above context are merely extrapolations of what has occurred already, (genuine sight of the future is best left to the psychics), so it’s not really that hard to do if … you look closely at what is going on now. But, the other component of a prediction uses what I call ‘white space’ analysis which involves looking for gaps and silences. In other words looking for lack of information. This is important.
We’re happy to present to the eyeOS community the result of more than six months of work together with the great IBM US team, where eyeOS will be the Sample Workload of the new System Z serie Solution Edition for Cloud Computing. System Z is the IBM brand used to produce their mainframe servers, used worldwide by governments, big companies and thousands of organizations.
Pixelize is a program that will use many scaled down images to try to duplicate, as closely as possible, another image.
Pixelize works by splitting up the image you want rendered (or duplicated) into a grid of small rectangular areas. Each area is analyzed, and replaced with an image chosen from a large database of images. Pixelize tries to pick images that best match each area.
Unlike in previous years where each new release of a Linux distribution or an application was met with expectations of it being the killer app, this years OSS developments were more low-key, more circumspect. The idea that Linux is suddenly going to hit a critical mass and turn into the Microsoft-killer is fading, to be replaced with a more rationale view that Linux, Mac OS X and Windows will co-exist, even if uncomfortably, for many years to come. Linux is not going to wipe out Microsoft’s dominance any time soon, just as Mac OS X is unlikely to turn the tables on Windows in the coming year.
And yet, there was much progress in 2009 that open source fans can celebrate. It was a year in which open source software became even more deeply entrenched, even if users weren’t completely aware of the change. Even Microsoft started embracing open source software, albeit cautiously, with a few carefully thought out moves.
Anybody can use open source. You might depend on open source software if you’re responsible for IT in a large enterprise or as a consumer who prefers FOSS apps for her own personal computing needs. That’s true whether you’re simply a software developer contributing code to the open source project, a techie who customizes software that just-so-happens to be open source (such as a web developer building sites using Drupal), or an end user who appreciates the price (free!) and quality of FOSS apps.
The problem that techies have is that they want to talk about and use technology, and they hate having to “sell” anything — particularly themselves or their skills. Often, or at least to begin with, the work comes to them, either because they’ve developed a reputation for excellence (“My brother-in-law says you’re good at creating websites”) or because of a relationship with another techie who needs assistance (“A client asked me to take this on and I’m already busy; could you write the back-end code and I’ll deal with the company?”). That’s fine — and with the right connections you can make a living that way.
More royal Drupal goodness. This time her Majesty Queen Rania Al Abdullah of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan is using Drupal: see http://www.queenrania.jo. Queen Rania is well-known for talking about using social media to help change the world — follow her on YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and Flickr.
Possibly the most compelling of the new opportunities for breakaway brokers is a Chicago firm called HighTower. It offers brokers with at least $100 million under management what it describes as an “open source” alternative to firms like Merrill and Morgan Stanley Smith Barney.
The flexibility that Java brings through its open source framework, has made it more popular. .NET in its complete form can only be installed on computers running a Microsoft Windows operating system, whereas Java can be installed on computers running any operating systems such as Linux, Solaris, Mac OS or Windows.
In a year of dramatic change and mergers for the data storage industry, it should come as no surprise that the most-read stories on Enterprise Storage Forum this year were about … dramatic change and mergers.
We don’t have many details, but we can confirm that AMD plans to launch two six-core desktop CPUs next year. This should happen in Q2 2010 and if AMD holds on to this date, it might come a bit later than Intel’s Core i7 980X.
When Big Brother Watch released our first report earlier this month – a study into the huge number of council controlled CCTV cameras – we condemned the enormous rise of almost 200% in 10 years for several reasons.
On the surface, many of the moves undertaken by investment banking behemoth Goldman Sachs look respectable, but a bit more digging reveals some ulterior motives at play. While Goldman repaid the money it took from Uncle Sam as part of the TARP program, many taxpayers are still angry that the government’s taxpayer-funded bailout of AIG indirectly benefited Goldman, who had billions invested in complicated trading deals with the troubled insurer.
The SEC and FINRA are investigating conduct by Wall Street investment banks, which bet against securities which they created ahead of the implosion of the housing market, according to reports from the New York Times.
Congress and financial regulators are probing several Wall Street firms for bundling bad debt, selling it to clients, and then profiting from betting that those same securities would fail, insiders say. Clients at Goldman Sachs and other firms lost billions of dollars on the mortgage-related securities as the housing market collapsed. The firms and some hedge funds made billions from the negative bets.
Thomas Adams, a lawyer at Paykin Krieg and Adams, LLP, and a former managing director at Ambac and FGIC is backing up the charges that Janet Tavakoli has been making against Goldman Sachs. In fact, he is taking her charges one step further and stating that the Federal Reserve and the Treasury aided and abetted Goldman Sachs in “committing financial and ethical crimes at an astounding level.”
Goldman Sachs (GS.N) was one of the foreign banks, along with Citigroup (C.N), Merrill Lynch and Morgan Stanley (MS.N), blamed by the state assets watchdog for providing “extremely complicated” and difficult to understand derivatives products.
First, Kosman states and characterizes the institutions involved in these derivatives trades as “brokers” when, in fact, they participate as PRINCIPALS. The amount of risk involved when one trades as a principal is materially larger than when one acts as a broker or agent. Of course, if Kosman had bothered to read the rest of the Report, he would have known that these trade COULD NOT HAVE BEEN BROKERED because the report tells us there are empirically NO END USERS FOR THESE PRODUCTS…
Step 1: Sell mortgage-related securities that are absolute junk to trusting clients at vastly overinflated prices.
Step 2: Bet against those same mortgage-related securities and make massive bets against the U.S. housing market so that your firm will make massive profits when the U.S. economy collapses.
Step 3: Have ex-Goldman executives in key positions of power in the U.S. government so that bailout money can be funneled to entities such as AIG that Goldman has made these bets with so that they can get paid after they win their bets.
Step 4: Collect the profits – Goldman Sachs is having their “most successful year” and will end up reporting approximately $50 billion in revenue for 2009.
The New York Times published a Christmas Eve expose of Goldman Sachs’s so-called “Abacus” synthetic collateralized debt obligations (CDOs). They were created with credit derivatives instead of cash securities. Goldman used credit derivatives to create short bets that gain in value when CDOs lose value. Goldman did this for both protection and profit and marketed the idea to hedge funds.
But certainly the economic damage to the USA that resulted from Lloyd Blankfein’s “work for God”, and that of his disciples, was much more than the economic damage inflicted on that country by the activities of Osama bin Laden.
According to the New York Times, Congressional and SEC investigators are examining if these firms knowingly created disastrously performing securities, sold them to investors and then proceeded to short the same securities. Essentially collateralized debt obligations were sold to investors. Goldman, Morgan Stanley, Deutsche and other firms sold these securities and then proceeded to short the same securities, in effect hedging against a loss in the value of the securities.
Ace biz blogger Henry Blodget has a shrewd take on it, “The Goldman Housing Scandal Isn’t A Scandal: It’s Inevitable.” Blodget’s argument, as always, is that this is how business is done. And he’s right. And he should know. A dot-com bubblegummer, Blodget didn’t get banned for life from the securities industry for being stupid.
Probes are supposedly under way, the NYT story says, but that won’t mean much. One of the smaller firms that peddled these CDOs and then bet against them was Tricadia, whose parent firm is controlled by Lewis Sachs, now a special counselor to Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner.
“And as long as they’re going to steal it, we want them to steal ours. They’ll get sort of addicted, and then we’ll somehow figure out how to collect sometime in the next decade.”
Except… of course, Microsoft has been pushing hard to “stop” that kind of “piracy” in China, and it may be having an unintended effect. Slashdot points us to the news that a group that had been offering pirated copies of Windows is now offering a copy of Ubuntu Linux, designed to look just like Windows XP.
Curiously, though, the October press release doesn’t mention 64-bit support at all, and the announcement of the latest beta includes only a passing link to “the latest alpha refresh” of the 64-bit Flash Player 10 prerelease for Linux.What about Windows or the Mac? Sorry, folks, no news to report.
Users have been waiting a long time for open source video drivers that match proprietary ones feature for feature. But by the end of next year they may actually arrive. Intel drivers are already solid, and are used on about twenty-five percent of open source computers.
However, the Linux 2.6.33 kernel is supposed to include increased support for both ATI and NVIDIA cards, so major improvements are a certainty by the end of next year. At the very least, if features are still missing, they should be come by mid-2011.
The merge window is normally a bit of a hectic time for subsystem maintainers. They have two weeks in which to pull together a well-formed tree containing all of the changes destined for the next kernel development cycle. Occasionally, though, last-minute snags can make the merge window even more busy than usual. The unexpected merging of the Nouveau driver is the result of one such snag – but it is a story with a happy ending for all.
A 200MB dynamo built on Slackware, Slax offers one seriously awesome feature you won’t find with any of the other options mentioned here. You can customize you ISO before you download. It’s as simple as choosing build Slax and then browsing through the massive inventory of packages available to plug in. Bonus points: you can even drop Google Chrome into your personal build.
Slax has long been a favorite of Linux users looking for a feature-packed but lightweight desktop OS, and it’s been downloaded more than 2 million times.
I had heard abοut ArchLinux back from the early days that I started experimenting with GNU/Linux distributions. It caught my attention for two main reasons:
1. The mentality of Keep It Simple Stupid (KISS) and lightweight.
2. It’s a rolling distro, which means you don’t need to upgrade every now and then to newer versions to keep up to date. Just update your way into everything new out there.
To be honest, I had attempted installing ArchLinux on an old laptop back then, but I failed miserably in completing the task. Same disappointing results on Virtualbox on my desktop PC. Although Arch has extremely thorough documentation available, I was stuck somewhere between manually setting up the system files and installing and configuring a working desktop environment. As an newbie I couldn’t handle the pressure, so I gave up. But not for long.
To my great pleasure, I recently stumbled upon the Chakra Project. Chakra is as the title suggests, a brand new distribution which is based on Arch Linux and KDE 4, but it comes extra with its own tweaked package set of KDE called KDEmod and some very handy tools.
I was extremely happy to see that it features a graphical installer, and the fact that it supports automatic hardware configuration made it irresistible. I just had to download and see with my one eyes. It was about time I get rid of that Windows XP dual boot with Ubuntu after all.
Ubuntu Linux may get the majority of attention from Linux watchers but there are many good alternatives available. One of those is Mandriva Linux, a version of Linux formerly known as Mandrake and long considered one of the most user-friendly of Linux versions.
Mandriva 2010 focused heavily on netbook users and other alternative desktop users. Boot time was also a priority for Mandriva, as it is for most other operating system makers, and the developers said that Mandriva 2010 shuts down, hibernates, suspends, and resumes faster. The bootup procedure on Mandriva 2010 is managed by Plymouth, which also makes for a more attractive, graphical boot up process.
We covered Spaz webOS, a microblogging client for Palm devices, when it was still a babe in the woods. The project has grown considerably since then and this week its developer, Ed Finkler, announced the release of Spaz webOS 1.0. It’s an important milestone that includes a slew of new features that ought to satisfy anyone looking for an open source microblogging app for their Palm device.
Nightshade is available for Linux and Window, and the project is currently looking for developers to help build a package for Mac OS X. According to the project team, the decision to break from the Stellarium project was based on a desire to depart from Stellarium’s desktop-heavy focus and plans to implement a new graphical interface.
FreeBSD is a free, open-source and UNIX-like operating system. Though relatively unknown, it’s a performing and powerful work-horse, capable of coping with massive work-loads whilest remaining fast, ultra-stable and rock-solid. Blogging about FreeBSD and operating systems based on this versatile, safe and secure OS, I want to generate more interest in FreeBSD and its dependants. If you need a reliable, rock-solid and performing system for either your desktop or servers, consider FreeBSD!
In an executive order issued Tuesday, President Barack Obama ended a Bush-era policy that allowed the head of the US’s intelligence agencies to have the final word on the declassification of documents.
This corruption of our legal system, if history is any guide, will not be reserved by the state for suspected terrorists, or even Muslim Americans. In the coming turmoil and economic collapse, it will be used to silence all who are branded as disruptive or subversive. Hashmi endures what many others, who are not Muslim, will endure later. Radical activists in the environmental, globalization, anti-nuclear, sustainable agriculture and anarchist movements—who are already being placed by the state in special detention facilities with Muslims charged with terrorism—have discovered that his fate is their fate. Courageous groups have organized protests, including vigils outside the Manhattan detention facility. They can be found at www.educatorsforcivilliberties.org or www.freefahad.com. On Martin Luther King Day, this Jan. 18 at 6 p.m. EST, protesters will hold a large vigil in front of the MCC on 150 Park Row in Lower Manhattan to call for a return of our constitutional rights. Join them if you can.
The health insurance lobby is laying the groundwork to block federal health care reform by working through think tanks to pass state laws invalidating federally-mandated reforms. Conservative and libertarian think tanks have started encouraging states to amend their constitutions to block federal health reform measures, including a mandate to purchase health insurance.
Regardless of when the fight happens, the health care industry has already laid lobbying groundwork across the country.
A New York Times story Tuesday showed that companies and individuals with a financial interest in the health care debate have already given heavily in state races. Data from the Institute on Money in State Politics show that while not a leader in the debate, Colorado is part of that trend.
Colorado ranks second in the Rocky Mountain West in the amount of political contributions accepted from the health care industry in the past three election cycles — $1.9 million — though nearly half went to support the 2005 ballot initiative Referendum C, a timeout on the revenue limits of the state’s Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights.
The years of sustained contributions point to a history of political involvement by health care interests and not necessarily a flurry of new activity, said Nathan Newman, director of liberal group Progressive States Network. And local health care lobbyists said they are waiting for the final version of federal legislation before wading into any state fights.
“States are the ones who are going to continue to spend the most of the money on health care,” Newman said. “Where they’re spending money, the lobby is already there.”
The romantic comedy “It’s Complicated” arrived at the multiplex on Friday complete with an R rating, ranking it in the same category as “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre” and “Basic Instinct” in the eyes of the Motion Picture Association of America.
However, as Michael Geist points out, in the rush to pull down the sites, the ISP also took down 4,500 other websites. Seems like quite a bit of unnecessary collateral damage. Of course, this is exactly what the Yes Men want. For every takedown, they get another burst of publicity.
There is one other problem with DRM protected books. When the reading device reaches its end of life, you have to assume all the content you purchased will be lost. If, for instance, I went with a Kindle, all of the content I purchase can be used only on devices supported by Amazon.
When, several years later, it comes time to replace that Kindle I may get a new Kindle — but I can’t assume that. Maybe somebody else will have a better device at that time. Or, maybe Amazon went bankrupt or evil or stupid and I need to switch to another vendor. There are any number of reasons I might like to switch my e-reader. If I do, I have to assume I won’t be able to use any of the content I purchased for the Kindle.
Thanks to DRM, when my e-reader reaches its end of life, I will have to pay to acquire replacement books for the material that’s locked out of the new e-reader. I call the amount of that purchase the “DRM tax” — an added cost imposed by DRM restrictions.
Increasingly, media moguls, national journalists and Wall Street experts are predicting that cable provider Comcast’s acquisition of NBC will lead to the end of free broadcast television. Numerous outlets have reported that Rupert Murdoch, founder of Fox News Channel’s parent company NewsCorp, is actively pushing to end the long-time television business model where advertising dollars pay for programming.
Famine isn’t a worry for most journalists in the developed world. But the information workers who toil at the core of the news business do resemble the stocking-makers of Nottinghamshire in other ways.
This is a big issue. As we’ve seen over and over again, many of these collections societies use sampling and counting methods that greatly overvalue big stars (who need the money less) at the expense of up-and-coming artists. It’s like the poor get to pay the rich.
From there, Wilhelm’s letter goes on in great detail responding to claims from SoundExchange and debunking them one by one. SoundExchange claims that they’re now going to be much more open and respond to these types of questions. We’ll be interested to see what they have to say.
One of my favorite things about the emerging new music industry has been the realization that there is no longer a single best way to do much of anything anymore. That pioneering spirit is leading to wonderful experimentation including this great twist from indie artist Christopher Bryant.
ON Hulu, the popular Web site that streams free television shows and other video, users have proved to be perfectly willing to watch short commercials, and a new site is betting that the same willingness will apply to downloading music.
The judge presiding over the Viacom-YouTube copyright lawsuit has allowed Viacom to withdraw infringement claims for around 250 clips — including approximately 100 that were uploaded to the site by Viacom employees or agents.
That alone should show how ridiculous Viacom’s claims are in this lawsuit. There is simply no way for Google to know if clips are uploaded legitimately or not. Oddly, however, the court has now allowed Viacom to withdraw those clips, but lawyers like Eric Goldman are questioning how this isn’t a Rule 11 violation for frivolous or improper litigation. But, more importantly, it demonstrates that even Viacom has no idea which clips are infringing and which are authorized. Given that, how can it possibly say that it’s reasonable for Google to know?
Evidently Youtube wants me to take this down, because of course a 4 year old dancing to a McDonald’s happy meal song (that was included with a happy meal) is too much for the copyright holder to handle.
I’ve been writing about the Loongson chip for three years now. As I’ve noted several times, this chip is important because (a) it’s a home-grown Chinese chip (albeit based on one from MIPS) and (b) Windows doesn’t run on it, but GNU/Linux does.
Because GNU/Linux distros have already been ported to the Loongson chip, neither Java nor OpenOffice.org needs “adapting” so much as recompiling – hardly a challenging task. As for “releasing it all under a free software license”, they had no choice.
The coming year should be a good one for free software. Desktop environments are maturing, technology is improving. A lot of the ground work done in many areas over the past twelve months should propel free software further.
While things are looking good, 2010 still won’t be the “Year of the Linux Desktop” (whatever that means).
Google and its applications are fast becoming the backbone of the internet. They seem to be solving everyone’s problems with free stuffs. Just when you get happy with something like Firefox, Google comes along and makes a browser that’s fast, super secure and has all kinds of add-ons and themes to personalize it.
For this comparison we used Ubuntu 9.10 on a Lenovo ThinkPad T61 notebook running an Intel Core 2 Duo T9300 processor, 4GB of system memory, a 100GB Hitachi HTS7220 SATA HDD, and a NVIDIA Quadro NVS 140M. We were using the Ubuntu-supplied kernels that are based off the Linux 2.6.31 kernel in Ubuntu Karmic. Other packages that were maintained included GNOME 2.28.1, X Server 1.6.4, NVIDIA 195.22 display driver, GCC 4.4.1, and we were using the default EXT4 file-system with all other defaults. With Ubuntu to properly address 4GB or greater of system memory you need to use a PAE kernel as the Physical Address Extension support through the kernel’s high-mem configuration options are not enabled in the default 32-bit kernels.
So when I go shopping for hardware, it sucks to be me. I haven’t tested all this stuff, and I don’t know how much of it works perfectly out of the box. What I need is to decide what software I’m going to put on it,n and have hardware recommendations per price point from the software distributor, so that I can just go to my local Surcouf, FNAC or whatever, and just look at one label & say “That’s only 90% supported, no custom from me!”
Have I ever told you all how much I love byobu? I have always used screen, though I really never tweaked it all crazy like many did. Recently I typed screen at the command line and I was presented with this thing called byobu. I went ahead and gave it a shot, and at first I will say I was rather annoyed with the bar at the bottom of my screen, and my scrollwheel didn’t work with byobu the way it did with screen. I went ahead and changed my workflow in order to get used to byobu. A couple of weeks ago, I got nosey, and wanted to know how byobu was doing its thing. After a while of messing around, and seeing everything it could display, I wanted more! And since quite a few of you on IRC wanted it, well here it is.
A while ago Duncan made a video on “Ninite“, a cool website that allows you to combine all of your favorite apps into one single installer. While Ninite is great the only disadvantage is that it only works with Windows and me being an Ubuntu user I had to look for a worthy alternative, so i came across this website called Allmyapps.
Félix Ontañón, a very good friend and hacker from my company, has just released a new versión of a systray application which help to configure and manage the Wii remote control on Linux. The application is called WiiCan and is hosted on Launchpad.
The Speed Dreams team has announced that its first release 1.4.0 is out:
Speed Dreams is an open source motorsport simulator. It was forked in late 2008 from the famous open racing car simulator TORCS, in order to implement exciting
new features, cars, tracks and AI opponents, to make a more enjoyable game for the player, as well as constantly improving visual and physics realism.
A few days ago The Dot received an invite for the KDE community to FOSS Nigeria. FOSS Nigeria 2010 will be the second Free Software conference in Nigeria, following the successful event last year (as reported on The Dot). Again, Free Software developers and community members from around the world, but of course especially those from Africa and Nigeria, are invited for a 3-day conference in Kano at the Bayero University Kano.
Great. Pre-processing is done. It’s time to use the second part of this plugin and to fuse bracketed images to a pseudo HDR image. On this new window, you can see a preview area on the left, and on the right, the bracketed images stack on the top, all Enfuse settings on the center, and finally, all processed images generated on the bottom. For each enfused image, you can choose which input bracketed images you want to use. Selecting a processed image on the bottom will load it to preview, to easy compare results. You can zoom in/out and pan preview if you want. To save processed images, just press Save button, and all selected items from processed stack will be saved to the current digiKam album.
TOMOYO is also in this version of Mandriva. TOMOYO is the new security framework used by default instead of AppArmor. It promises quite a lot just now but should mature rapidly, as do all GNU/Linux-based security applications. On the Mandriva community wiki, you are advised not to use the RC1 or RC2 version to upgrade an existing Mandriva Linux installation. There are unresolved issues with KDE and GNOME and other windows managers, which is likely to result in a system upgraded from any stable release to this version being unable to start a desktop or rendering it useless for most people.
“We considered a number of operating systems as the platform for our business-critical SAP applications, and after much testing and evaluation, we selected Red Hat Enterprise Linux Advanced Platform on HP ProLiant servers because it met our requirements and provided the best overall value, stability and performance,” pointed out Mohit Agarwal, CIO of Carnation Auto.
One problem I run into a lot when recommending Ubuntu to complete Linux newbies is they aren’t used to installing codecs or using the terminal when they want to play DVDs, MP3s and other file types. Explaining the legal situation is something I make a point of doing but some people “just want it to work”. This is what has led me to Super Ubuntu or SuperOS as it’s now called. Once the recently released SuperOS 9.10 was adequately seeded I downloaded this enhanced version of Ubuntu and took it for a spin.
[bunnie] posted this pretty slick way of getting composite video out of a Chumby. The Chumby is an open source connectivity device that has already seen some decent hacking. This modification, done by [xobs] isn’t too difficult. It only requires patching into some pads on the motherboard and loading a custom kernel to support the external output.
Palm has launched an update to its web OS, which comes with enhancements to its App Catalog and improvements in battery life optimisation when in marginal coverage areas. It is available for Palm Pixi and Palm Pre smartphones, both of which are exclusive to the Sprint Nextel network.
This morning, a carefully selected slice of the tech press received a short but sweet invitation to the announcement event. In the long-standing tradition of milking product announcements for every drop of suspense, the invitation doesn’t mention the Nexus One specifically, but merely reads:
With the launch of the first Android-powered device just over a year ago, we’ve seen how a powerful, open platform can spur mobile product innovation. And this is just the beginning of what’s possible.
In the final show for the year and the decade, Dan and Fab look back at 2009 and the major news stories of the year. We also try to decide what this year was all about. There’s even some special funny content as a little bonus.
Most smartbooks, which are expected to be built by both PC makers as well as manufacturers of cellphones and consumer-electronics, will run versions of the Linux operating system and low-cost chips based on designs licensed by ARM Holdings PLC.
Freescale’s research focused on the future because most smartbooks have yet to hit the market. The company has collaborated on one smartbook to date: the NetWalker from Japanese manufacturer Sharp. Qualcomm has also unveiled one smartbook, made by Lenovo. Both companies expect at least a dozen smartbooks incorporating their chips to debut in early 2010.
We have been waiting for the smartbook revolution to take hold for some time now. Well it looks like it will kick off in earnest from the first quarter of next year. According to President Kim Yung-sup of ARM Korea, “20 companies in the world are preparing for release of smart book. And we will see them from 1Q.”
As this is the holiday season, and things are slow, I have finally taken the time to follow up on some very good advice that Jake gave me, and learn to produce blog entries with pictures. Of course, there is no better way to start than with the specific subject that Jake (and others) said they would like to see pictures of, so here is a quick review of some of the most common Netbook-centric Linux distributions.
Overall I am quite impressed with the KDE Netbook desktop, and I am anxious to see how its development continues. The last I heard it was scheduled for an initial release in early 2010, so I will be watching for that.
This week, Advogato gets up on his soapbox and dispenses advice to free software neophytes.
I’ll take the risk of demonstrating my advanced age and give some advice for new free software developers. With luck, this post will get some discussion rolling. What are some of the worst mistakes you’ve made as a free software developer. What has worked well for you?
Best distro release: Knoppix 6.x
After a long hiatus, the venerable Live CD Linux distribution emerged in a new version redesigned from the ground up. The latest version sports a brand new accelerated boot procedure which significantly reduces the boot time, and the LXDE lightweight graphical desktop environment. Unlike previous versions, Knoppix 6.0 comes with a trimmed software bundle, but key productivity applications like OpenOffice.org, Iceweasel (aka Firefox), Icedove (aka Thunderbird), Pidgin, and the GIMP are still there. The latest version of Knoppix features a new flash-knoppix tool that allows you to install Knoppix on a USB stick or a flash card.
The good part is that Pranav is planning to make available this software as open source so every one can benefit. Since it will open source, anyone can add features or modify the software as he wishes. The hardware costs for this system are relatively low.
8. Firefox Optimizer: Firefox Optimizers for Mozilla Firefox v1.x / 2.x / 3.x was developed for an easy and fast optimization of your browsing experience with Firefox. It is based on a collection of popular and well working optimization settings used and tested by the experts.
Fear #1 is that Oracle will kill MySQL, which Oracle is said to see as a threat to its cash-cow relational database management system. One might respond that similar fears were expressed after Oracle’s acquisitions of Innobase and Sleepycat Software, but that things have not turned out that way so far. One might say (as Eben Moglen has) that keeping MySQL healthy is in Oracle’s economic interest. One might also respond that Oracle could arguably do more damage to MySQL by breaking off the acquisition and allowing Sun to simply die. But what is most interesting about this particular concern is the lack of faith it shows in our community’s ability to cope with such an outcome.
Markdown is a text-to-HTML conversion tool which allows you to write web code using an easy-to-understand plain text format. Markdown text is then converted to structurally valid XHTML (or HTML). Markdown is used all over the web — it’s even understood by the content fields and comment forms within most popular blogging platforms, including WordPress and Movable Type. It’s been ported to Python, Ruby, PHP and other popular languages.
However, the original Perl script has remained largely unchanged since its release in 2004. In his post, Atwood takes Gruber to task for what Atwood calls “bad parenting,” an indictment of Markdown’s lack of bug fixes, updates and improvements.
Markdown was released under a BSD-style open source license, meaning the community can do pretty much whatever it likes with the code, so long as it respects the copyright notices and naming rules. Indeed, many ports of Markdown enjoy rather widespread support with numerous contributors and an aggregate community of active developers that the original Markdown lacks.
In terms of the blogs on my blog roll there are many that will be familiar (Deepak Singh’s BBGM, Jean-Claude Bradley’s Usefulchem, John Wilbanks’ Common Knowledge, Neil Saunders’ What you’re doing is rather desperate). I keep an eye on Richard Grant (The Scientist), Jenny Rohn, and Martin Fenner at Nature Network. Some other blogs that may not be as familiar to the regular sciblogger community but are well worth the effort are Greg Wilson’s The Third Bit, Mike Ellis’ Electronic Museum, PT Sefton’s blog and Nico Adams’ Staudinger’s Semantic Molecules.
“picons” is short for “personal icons”. They’re small, constrained images used to represent users and domains on the net, organized into databases so that the appropriate image for a given e-mail address can be found. Besides users and domains, there are picons databases for Usenet newsgroups and weather forecasts. The picons are in either monochrome XBM format or color XPM and GIF formats.
A long time ago when I first started at IBM I used an editor named XEDIT that ran under the VM/CMS operating system on mainframes. It was a fullscreen, line-oriented editor that looks primitive now but was quite sophisticated in its time. One of the best things about it was that it was scriptable: you could write very sophisticated programs that could manipulate files and their contents. XEDIT really became powerful when used with the REXX programming language and many of my thoughts and philosophy about embedded languages were formed during my use of REXX.
In 2010, developers will learn to let go and adapt to a centralized resource pool, continuous testing will eclipse continuous integration, coffee breaks will get shorter, open source CI tools will buckle in big shops, and distributed software configuration management tools will cross the chasm from open source projects to the enterprise.
Digitalis Education Solutions, Inc. is pleased to announce the official launch of Nightshade, open source astronomy simulation and visualization software specifically tailored to digital planetarium and educator use.
The primary goal for Firebird 2.5 was to establish the basics for a new threading architecture that is almost entirely common to the Superserver, Classic and Embedded models, taking in lower level synchronization and thread safety generally.
A former employee of Seagate Technology claims that the company destroyed evidence that could have affected a long-standing patent infringement lawsuit filed against it by engineering company Convolve Inc. and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).
In a court document obtained by the New York Times that was filed late last month, the former employee, Paul A. Galloway, claimed in an affidavit that Seagate deliberately destroyed the source code pertaining to a disk driving using Convolve’s intellectual property and “failed to preserve” Galloway’s PC containing all of his work during development of the drive.
A nine-year-old boy was separated from his mother and kept in a van for several hours by UK Border Agency officials while she was treated in hospital.
The agency held the boy – known as Child M – in a vehicle for three hours after an early morning deportation raid, and said that he had not been distressed. The family, however, said the child repeatedly asked to see his mother and was terrified during the incarceration.
Ever since Rodney King was famously videotaped receiving what many saw as an over-the-top thrashing by Los Angeles lawmen back in 1991, video footage of alleged police misconduct has time and time again come back to haunt overzealous boys in blue.
We’d do much better by leveraging the inherent strengths of our modern democracies and the natural advantages we have over the terrorists: our adaptability and survivability, our international network of laws and law enforcement, and the freedoms and liberties that make our society so enviable.
The way we live is open enough to make terrorists rare; we are observant enough to prevent most of the terrorist plots that exist, and indomitable enough to survive the even fewer terrorist plots that actually succeed. We don’t need to pretend otherwise.
According to Peter, humanity has probably been in overshoot of the Earth’s carrying capacity since it abandoned hunter gathering in favor of crop cultivation (~ 8,000 BCE). The problem is that soil needs tightly woven natural ecosystems to properly recycle nutrients and prevent soil erosion.
It’s worth going back every so often to see how projections made back in the day are shaping up. As we get to the end of another year, we can update all of the graphs of annual means with another single datapoint. Statistically this isn’t hugely important, but people seem interested, so why not?
For example, here is an update of the graph showing the annual mean anomalies from the IPCC AR4 models plotted against the surface temperature records from the HadCRUT3v and GISTEMP products (it really doesn’t matter which). Everything has been baselined to 1980-1999 (as in the 2007 IPCC report) and the envelope in grey encloses 95% of the model runs. The 2009 number is the Jan-Nov average.
One of the central underpinnings of neo-classical economics is trade. And one of the central tenets of trade is the Ricardian theory of comparative advantage. Trade (in theory) benefits both parties because both are better off after the exchange. But our international trade system has, by baby steps, become completely dependent on twin enablers: crude oil and credit. By air, water, land or rail, petroleum accounts for 95% of all transportation energy. As we move up the complexity chain in the products that make up our daily lives, are we moving further into a Chinese finger trap where there is no backing out?
This post will examine the theory of international trade and the hierarchy of goods transport, production and consumption. It is quite possible that in the next decade, the increase in price (or the decreasing availability) of oil and financing, will offset the benefits of many types of trade.
A frequently asked question that seems appropriate this time of year (given the number of e-books that are likely to appear in people’s Christmas stockings) concerns what one is legally allowed to do with documents on one’s own e-book, particularly one that is protected by some form of digital rights management.
So, 20 years after Sir Tim Berners-Lee invented the technology, and well over a decade after the Web became a mass medium, and the British Library *still* isn’t archiving every Web site?
History – assuming we have one – will judge us harshly for this extraordinary UK failure to preserve the key decades of the quintessential technology of our age. It’s like burning down a local digital version of the Library of Alexandria, all over again.
The FrostWire P2P client promotes music of starting and independent artists through its FrostClick service. The service has been running for over a year and is a great success. To celebrate the first million downloads of 2009, a compilation album has been released, featuring free Creative Commons-licensed tracks from 21 artists.
The Italian Supreme Court has ruled that ISPs can be forced to block BitTorrent sites, even if they are not hosted in Italy or operated by Italian citizens. According to the decision by the Supreme Court, sites offering torrent files that link to copyrighted material are engaging in criminal activity.
The fact that a site is not hosted in Italy or operated by Italians is irrelevant according to the court. The site is visited by many Italians who (in part) use it to share copyrighted material, the Supreme Court argued.
Given that the UK government seems happy for huge sums of money to be spent on this fool’s errand, why not spend it more effectively, in a way that sustains businesses, rather than penalising them, and which actually encourages people not to download copyrighted material from unauthorised sources?
This can be done quite simply: by giving everyone who wants it a free Spotify Premium subscription. These normally cost £120 per year, but buying a national licence for the 10 million families or so who are online would presumably garner a generous discount – say, of 50% – bringing the total price of the scheme to around £600 million, pretty much the expected cost of the current plans.
It is extraordinary how copyright has turned from an obscure, dusty corner of the law to one of the flashpoints of the digital age. The reason is simple. Copyright is an intellectual *monopoly*, and like all monopolies tries to limit access to a given good. But limiting access to digital goods is a forlorn hope: as Bruce Schneier expressed it so memorably, trying to make digital files uncopiable is like trying to make water not wet. The battle over copyright is therefore a manifestation of a far deeper struggle between two ways of looking at the world: one based on scarce analogue objects, the other on abundant digital ones.
Hardly a day goes by without yet another news story about creative uses of copyright, the DMCA, and generic attack lawyers to stifle free speech, criticism, and competition. It seems that money can buy all kinds of creative “justice.” For example, in the increasingly bizarre Apple vs. Psystar drama, in which Psystar commited the awful crime of selling a tool to help customers install Mac OS X on the hardware of their choice, Apple have prevailed yet again in court, and Psystar cannot do this anymore.
Thiruvananthapuram: All 141 legislators of the state assembly were Tuesday given a brand new HCL laptop each.
Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan handed over one laptop to Leader of the Opposition Oommen Chandy at the banquet hall of the state assembly.
It is yet to be decided if the legislators would be charged for the computers, speaker of the assembly K. Radhakrishnan told.
Ubuntu 10.04, a.k.a. the Lucid Lynx, is set to hit the Web in April. Lucid will be Canonical’s third Long Term Support release, and I expect it to break new ground for the organization in the server space, owing in large part to its Ubuntu Enterprise Cloud functionality.
Toward the end of the year, I expect to see devices shipping with Google’s Web-centric Chrome OS, which may well set the stage for a new batch of rich Web applications in 2011 and beyond.
One last bit of advice. Sometimes you might suspect that a piece of hardware is defective but, you don’t have a utility available to actually test the device. For example, I had a client complaining that the network adapter on an HP workstation had gone bad. I replaced the motherboard (which had an integrated network adapter).
When I got back into Windows I tried to access the Internet, but the network adapter still wouldn’t work. So I reloaded drivers, verified IP settings and performed numerous other tests. Still, I could not get this PC online. I concluded that something inside of Windows was causing the problem, and the only thing left to do was to reinstall Windows. The client wasn’t willing to redo a system based on a hunch, so to test my hypothesis I booted the system using an Ubuntu Live CD.
Ubuntu Live CD is a version of the Linux-based Ubuntu operating system that runs completely off of a CD without having to install it to the PC. This let me boot into a completely different operating system on the same PC, without modifying the current Windows configuration.
Getting the Windows look is only another step in the same direction. We’re going to try and ape the current generation of Windows – the newly released Windows 7 – and merge some of its features into the Linux desktop, and we’ve decided to use KDE to do it.
Was 2009 the year of the Linux desktop? It’s a rather silly question, honestly, and a Google search will show that for the last number of years, there have been constant predictions that that year was the year of the Linux desktop. And, guaranteed, in January there will be more predictions that 2010 will be “the year of the Linux desktop!”
But why this focus on a particular point in time? Recent distributions already prove that Linux is more than capable for the desktop, and this has been true for years. 2009 brought about GNOME 2.28 and KDE 4.3, both forward-progressing desktop environments. Are they perfect? Of course not. But let me pose this question: Is Windows on the desktop perfect?
Linux on the desktop is entirely subjective: For some, the year of their Linux desktop was 2009, or last year, or the year before that. For others, Linux won’t be good enough until 2010, or 2011, or even further.
I’ve been wondering about this particular issue for a few years now. I’m secretly hoping that Chrome with it’s cloud based storage will finally push OS developers in the right direction and will make them start thinking about finally separating system and data files by default. Or maybe not.
This might make me sound like an old fogey, but I really do miss the old games like Space Quest, The Curse of Monkey Island and Return to Zork. The problem isn’t that I don’t have the games anymore, but rather that they were designed for my 386 computer running DOS. Thankfully, I’m not alone in my fits of nostalgia. The developers over at www.scummvm.org have reproduced the “Script Creation Utility for Maniac Mansion” developed by Lucas Arts and packaged it into a virtual machine (thus, ScummVM). That virtual machine is open source and available for just about any platform you can imagine.
The GIMP is a multiplatform photo manipulation tool. GIMP is an acronym for GNU Image Manipulation Program. The GIMP is suitable for a variety of image manipulation tasks, including photo retouching, image composition, and image construction.
François Dupoux announced on December 28th the immediate availability of the SystemRescueCd 1.3.4 operating system. The new release is powered by Linux kernel 126.96.36.199, with an updated Btrfs filesystem from Linux kernel 2.6.32 and Xorg Server 1.6.5.
Hacktolive.org announced today, December 29th, yet another version of their Ubuntu-based Linux distribution… with “super powers.” Super OS 9.10 (formerly known as Super Ubuntu) includes patches, tools and technologies that are missing from a standard Ubuntu 9.10 (Karmic Koala) default installation.
The new Karmic Koala contains more updates than any Ubuntu release in some time. Users will certainly notice one thing from the start: The system boots up much more quickly. The reworked design also stands out. While it still features the brown tones for which Ubuntu is known, it also reminds one a bit of the Mac OS interface.
At the moment Canonical seem set to release the next version of their OS in late April 2010, this latest version will be version 10.04 and is named Lucid Lynx, this is their first major release since Karmic Koala which was released in late October 2009.
We hooked up the appliance’s LAN and WAN ports, and from the tidy web interface set up the firewall to perform NAT on the WAN port. A failing of many competing products has been their inability to hide the underlying Linux kernel for management, but Igaware has made a good job of this, so Windows users don’t need to know about Linux.
Notion Ink, a Hyderabad-based technology start-up, has developed the first touchscreen tablet which uses Google’s open source operating system Android, Nvidia’s yet-to-be launched Tegra processor chips and a power-saving display screen from the US-based fabless developer Pixel Qi.
Breaking News! Notion Ink, a Hyderabad-based company, has developed the first touchscreen Tablet PC, which uses Google’s Android Open Source Operating system. The tablet PC was developed by six IITians and an MBA. It will be displayed at the Las Vegas Consumer Electronics Show in January 2010.
If you’ve got some free time on your hands this holiday season, check out these open source versions of popular games you grew up playing. They’re loads of fun, but don’t blame us if they make you a little nostalgic.
On Sunday 27th of December at the 26th Chaos Communication Congress (26C3) in Berlin, security researchers published open source instructions for cracking the A5/1 mobile telephony encryption algorithm and for building an IMSI catcher that intercepts mobile phone communication.
For the last year we have compiled monthly statistics on the top Open Source eCommerce programs, including several free or nearly-free proprietary programs that are sold for less than some OSC programs. “Open Source” means free to look at and to modify, not free of cost: about half of the top OSC programs reviewed are sold for a fee.
McObject’s eXtremeDB is based on its open source system, Perst. Perst is designed to be embedded in Java, Java ME, and Microsoft .Net applications. The ExtremeDB commercial version of Perst comes in a high availability version that includes transaction logging.
MyYearbook.com, an early user of eXtremeDB, was launched in 2005. It is also a user of the open source PostgreSQL system for relational database work, Harris said.
About two weeks ago, it became clear the final version of Firefox 3.6 would be pushed back to early 2010 . And we’ve known since September that Firefox 4.0 wouldn’t ship until late 2010 — although according to Mozilla’s most recent meeting notes 4.0 may be pushed back to early 2011. But while we wait for the official versions of these browsers to come out, let’s take a look at what’s in store for the world’s second-most popular browser.
Technologies such as virtualization that underlie Amazon EC2, along with open source software like MemcacheD used heavily by Facebook and other large web-shops, have been important enablers of cloud services.
Rather than offer the applications to clients and leaving them to get on with the task of integrating them with cloud services, however, Sun is customising the software to work with mainstream cloud service providers such as Amazon and Eucalyptus.
MySQL co-creator Michael “Monty” Widenius has launched a web campaign to try and prevent Oracle from gaining ownership of the open source database which is part of the properties it acquired along with Sun Microsystems in April.
In a desperate last gasp bid to stop Oracle buying Sun Microsystems and its precious MySQL kit and kaboodle, the database’s co-creator – Michael ‘Monty’ Widenius – has launched a campaign to “help keep the internet free.”
If you’re like a lot of IT organizations, you’ve got servers from Hewlett-Packard, routers from Cisco, operating systems from Red Hat and Microsoft – and you may even have Solaris from Sun somewhere. For good measure let’s throw in a few databases from MySQL that occasionally take a virtual table or two from your SQL Server farms – and let’s not forget to mention the Oracle database that runs your CRM software. To top things off you’re running a slew of other open and closed source software that all together keeps your business running.
Questionmark, a provider of testing and assessment software and support services, announced recently that its Moodle Connector can now be accessed free of charge as an open source Community Edition as part of Questionmark’s Open Assessment Platform initiative.
There are other reasons to doubt the importance of a graphical installer as the big reason BSD Unix systems do not get the “love” that is heaped on Linux. The answer to why Linux gets more hype and attention is much more complex than that, and includes such concerns as marketing power — in large part because its community is full of people who will talk about how great it is without even understanding half of what they are saying. That is true of anything popular, and says nothing bad about Linux itself, of course.
Speaking of electronic texts, we’re talking open source here. If they don’t exist as Flexbooks or some other format that my teachers and students could easily use, then I want my teachers to be subject-matter experts who can generate open content. There, of course, is another dividend of corporate sponsorship: contribution to a growing store of high-quality educational content.
The GENIVI Alliance, an automotive industry association driving the development and adoption of an open in-vehicle Infotainment (IVI) reference platform, will be demonstrating the initial implementation of the GENIVI 1.0 platform in Las Vegas during International CES 2010, January 7th – 10th.
Of course, these aren’t the only problems with the bill. Most glaringly, both the Senate and House bill would leave millions uninsured,6 a far cry from the vision of universal coverage so many of us have fought for. That remains a long-term goal.
‘Tis the season for predictions, so “Information Age” bravely goes out on this limb: Most technology predictions for 2010 won’t come true. The more we learn about how innovation happens, the less straight the lines of advance look.
“Inventions have long since reached their limit, and I see no hope for further developments,” said Roman engineer Julius Sextus Frontinus in 10 A.D. This end-of-progress view has been echoed many times, including by Charles Duell, commissioner for the U.S. Patent Office, who in 1899 said, “Everything that can be invented has already been invented.”
For the last 40 years, Unix operating systems have helped to power mission-critical IT operations around the globe. Now, as Unix enters middle age, its backers are busily developing the new specifications that they hope will carry the OS forward into the next age of computing.
U.S. intelligence has concluded that the document published recently by the Times of London, which purportedly describes an Iranian plan to do experiments on what the newspaper described as a “neutron initiator” for an atomic weapon, is a fabrication, according to a former Central Intelligence Agency official.
It’s been several days since the chaotic end to the Copenhagen climate conference but the aftershocks from its failure are still reverberating. As John Prescott points out in his letter to the Guardian, the pointing of fingers in the blame game does not help the regaining of trust needed for the positive resumption of talks early next year and to complete them by December 2010, the new deadline agreed to in Copenhagen.
The researchers call this the “licensing effect”. Buying green can establish the moral credentials that license subsequent bad behaviour: the rosier your view of yourself, the more likely you are to hoard your money and do down other people.
Then they took another bunch of students, gave them the same purchasing choices, then introduced them to a game in which they made money by describing a pattern of dots on a computer screen. If there were more dots on the right than the left they made more money. Afterwards they were asked to count the money they had earned out of an envelope.
And remember, JPMorgan’s CEO is Jamie Dimon who is also closely tied into the Obama team. He is often listed as one of the lead candidates to replace Geithner or take over other leading economic positions within the Obama administration. Remember this the next time his name is floated to replace someone. He’s obviously terrified of the impact the tax will have on his business, but he’s also again showing how he is part of the global problem in the banking industry. Where is their sense of responsibility for the problems they created? If only this crowd worried as much before the crisis as they do now we may have avoided such a deep recession.
“It’s a joke, it’s lobbying. People are dreaming if they think the London investment banking world is going to move. There is more office space in Canary Wharf than in the whole of Switzerland,” Tim Dawson, an analyst at Geneva-based brokerage Helvea, told Bloomberg.
Listen, and you’ll hear a spokesperson for the new Helena, MT, chapter of the Coalition for Chemical Safety being interviewed while handing out Coalition literature in the state capitol rotunda during an event organized by the chapter. She describes her concern as a mom over the use of BPA in kids’ products, and even criticizes the Food and Drug Administration’s past reliance only on industry studies to conclude BPA is safe. You’ll also hear the reporter note that the Coalition wants to “ban BPA and other chemicals that could be harmful.”
Building an experimental power plant in Illinois isn’t just about finding land, erecting a facility and flipping a switch.
Just as Illinois taxpayers were billed more than $450,000 for Washington D.C.-based lobbying efforts to bring the high-tech, coal-fired FutureGen facility to Mattoon, the FutureGen Alliance is now spending money to lobby state lawmakers and the Quinn administration in Springfield.
Their task: Convince the state to buy all the electricity the plant produces. Such a move would help FutureGen secure federal funding needed to build the near zero-emissions plant.
Like about a dozen other states, Florida is debating a proposed amendment to its state constitution that would try to block, at least symbolically, much of the proposed federal health care overhaul on the grounds that it tramples individual liberty.
The government of Canada has used strong-arm tactics to shut down two parody websites criticizing Canada’s poor environmental policy, taking down 4500 other websites in the process.
The two websites, “enviro-canada.ca” and “ec-gc.ca”, are “directly connected to a hoax which misleads people into believing that the Government of Canada will take certain actions in relation to environmental matters,” wrote Mike Landreville from Environment Canada in an email to the German Internet Service Provider (ISP) Serverloft. “We trust you appreciate the importance of avoiding confusion among the public concerning Canadian governmental affairs and that you will assist us in preventing this hoax from spreading further.”
A New Jersey judge has ordered the shutdown of three H-1B opposition Web sites and seeks information about the identity of anonymous posters.
On Dec. 23, Middlesex County Superior Court Judge James Hurley ordered firms that register domains and provide hosting services — GoDaddy Inc., Network Solutions, Comcast Cable Communications Inc. and DiscountASP.Net, to disable the three sites, ITgrunt.com, Endh1b.com, and Guestworkerfraud.com. Facebook Inc. was also ordered to disable ITgrunt’s Facebook page.
The whistle blowing site is taking time out until 6 January to ask for support in many forms, not just donations. Wikileaks is appealing for help from volunteer coders, offers of free legal assistance and hosting support as well as cash donations. The site has promised not to accept corporate or government finance in order to protect its integrity.
A former policeman who accused senior officers of corruption in a series of video blogs will himself face prosecution for abuse of office, Russian investigators said on Monday.
Former police major Alexei Dymovsky became a household name in Russia earlier this year when he used YouTube to appeal to Prime Minister Vladimir Putin to tackle corruption in the police force.
A criminal case will be brought against Dymovsky for “fraud committed by a person using his official position,” the Prosecutor-General’s investigative committee said in a statement. It gave no further details.
The article admitted that the #2 and #3 “application programs” (“Adobe” and “Microsoft”) reported were “closed source” and that “open source” programs tend to show all the blemishes, not just the ones reported by their customers, and reflected back through visible reports by the companies. To be even fairer, I would point out that comparing “Firefox” with all of the applications that Adobe has and all of the applications Microsoft has is a bit like apples and oranges….but that is not the main concept I will try to get across in this blog entry.
This new benchmark, which can be found in the Phoronix Test Suite once its released, will focus on SDR/HDR performance. This should end up being a rather nice test profile as right now it’s completely slaughtering the ASUS Eee PC 1201N and other systems being tested remotely through Phoromatic.
Supercomputer maker Silicon Graphics has inked a deal to build the Tasmanian Partnership for Advanced Computing – which has the rap name TPAC – at the University of Tasmania on the eponymous Australian island state. The gig: creating a new x64-Linux cluster for climate research.
If you’re just beginning to learn to record your personal finances, there are reviews that point out that Buddi is one of the tools to check out. Why? A lot of them say that it is quite easy for beginners to use and understand compared to other software like GNUCash. That’s why I ended up checking Buddi. Also, Buddi has installer files on its project site and you could verify if the distro you’re using is supported. In any case, there’s always the generic Unix and Linux which is basically a script that you could run.
The KMyMoney team is pleased to announce the immediate availability of version 3.95. After 8 months of hard work, this release is the first version developed upon the KDE 4 Platform. We are confident that it is stable enough for use by early adopters. We would like to get much needed feedback from the community in order to make the new KMyMoney as rock-solid as previous releases.
The latest release of Inkscape namely version 0.47 adds many new features to an already powerful toolset. Some of them being numerous enhancements to the existing tools – pen and pencil tool, eraser tool, tweak tool, text tool, and so on. Inkscape -.47 has gained new extensions, and new filters that add special effects to your images, SVG improvements, and interface enhancements.
Some are probably asking at this point, what is Wine? The Wine project was started in 1993 to allow Windows applications to be run under Linux. Wine takes the Windows API (Application Programming Interface) and implements it in the Linux user space. Since Wine is running in user space and is not a part of the Linux Kernel, it relies on the wineserver daemon to provide your basic Windows kernel functionality as well as other various tasks of X integration.
As a quick recap, there are two basic goals we want to complete in this article. First we want to compare performance and functionality of games between Linux and Windows. Second, we will look at the performance and functionality differences of Wine/Cedega/Crossover Games.
I’ve been in a gaming mood of the late and I much prefer to be able to run my games under Linux as opposed to having to reboot into Windows. That being said a game I’ve really enjoyed playing is Devil’s Tuning Fork. It is a very unique first person indie game in which your character “sees” with their ears. It is being developed by a team of students at DePaul University in Chicago and it is a free download from the game’s homepage.
Christmas is a time for rest and contemplation. To intersperse the period with some distraction on long winter evenings, a number of Linux games can prove some diversion, as this article will show.
The sports event of the weekend will be going into winter break, and to while away the time, we assembled a short list of interesting but little known games that have been brought to our attention over the last few months. The recommendations cover lots of different game genres, so there should be something for everyone.
So, we’re close to 2010 and Entropy is about to celebrate its third birthday. It’s been a very long road, full of obstacles but hey, we’re getting closer to 1.0! 2010 will be the year of Entropy 1.0 bringing a basic set of features and ideas tossed into the wild software jungle.
As everybody^wnobody know, Hervé YAHI is no longer the CEO of Mandriva. So I decide to rip off an article from The VAR Guy to issue an open letter to the Mandriva direction. So here are 9 priorities for the new Mandriva staff
The games you see in the screenshot above are all included by default on Sabayon 5,1 Gamers live DVD. Some popular titles include Battle of Wesnoth, Foobillard, Freeciv, Frozen Bubble, GNOME Games, NeverBall, Nexuiz, OpenArena, Pingus, Pychess, Scorched 3D, Spring, Stepmania, Torcs, Tremulous, Warsow, Warzone 2100, and Wormux.
If I was forced to provide some quantitative milestones for Ubuntu Women, I would probably offer, along with a grain of salt:
* Break 5% of Ubuntu Membership held by women (currently 4-point-something)
* Increase Women ~ubuntu-dev membership by 50% (from 4 to 6)
* Increase Women ~ubuntu-core-dev membership by 100% (from 1 to 2, because dealing in fractions of people is illegal in most places)
* Increase active mentors by 100%
Since these are supposed to be figures for the inaugural term of 6 months, the success of these figures relies fairly heavily upon women who are already involved. This is a critical caveat. Incentives to take the first step to participation, counsel and mentoring will be the most important activities Ubuntu Women undertakes, and will set up the opportunity to aim for better milestones beyond the inaugural 6 month term.
All in all, 2009 was not a revolutionary year for the Ubuntu community. There was no LTS release, as there was in 2008 and will be in 2010, and the focus was on incremental development.
Nonetheless, it’s clear that Ubuntu gained some useful new features, and the community received interesting news, in 2009. Let’s hope the improvements we’ve seen in the last year solidify and expand going into 2010 and the Lucid release next April.
Ubuntu actually does all right by these criteria, so perhaps to some degree the conflation of “Internet” and “Web” is driven by the complexities of installing third party apps on Windows, and all of the problems this can cause one’s computer as different versions of shared libraries and such are copied in.
Ultimately, I suppose that I would love it if LifeArea had the Gwibber-like ability to post. There are still other posting tools to try in any case, so I may find one yet. I’m installing Drivel atm.
But you can’t beat Windows by offering a Windows-looking clone. Because people will still want their Office and their whatever. You may claim that people will have a free Windows alternative available and will flock to it. Well, they already have a free Windows alternative. It’s called pirated Windows and it’s rampant.
Speculation is a part of technical news as prophecy is to religion. Its only important, valid or genius if it turns out to be true. However, we dare not have technical news without any speculation at all since this will surely hinder the creativeness of individuals and corporations to explore avenues influenced by ideas expressed in speculation. If any of that made sense to you, good. Because this was the reasoning I used in order to explore and develop the idea to create this article. In other words I have no factual evidence that anything of the sort would occur.
If Mozilla and Ubuntu/Canonical pulled together they should have enough combined resources to really compete in the market place with Google or anyone else. However they can not sit still and do nothing because other larger companies will push them out of the market they helped create. Now is not the time to “See what happens”. Its time to prepare for the future and make essential friends.
As we count down to end of 2009, the emerging star of this year’s holiday shopping season is shaping up to be the electronic book reader (or e-reader). From Amazon’s Kindle to Barnes and Noble’s forthcoming Nook, e-readers are starting to transform how we buy and read books in the same way mp3s changed how we buy and listen to music.
Openmoko, the company that first gained attention for its Linux-based phone platform, launched a new pocket-sized open source product in time for this holiday season, the WikiReader. The WikiReader is an inexpensive ($99), low-power, 4-inch square touchscreen LCD display device pre-loaded with the text of three million Wikipedia pages on a microSD card. In the smartphone era, skeptics might dismiss the device as woefully underpowered, but to the open source community the more pertinent question is what else can it do?
For today, however, the product makes for a fun stocking stuffer for the family hacker. Openmoko is positioning the device in its advertising as a way to get content into the hands of the “75% of the world [that] is offline” — including people in airplanes or on beaches, and “most everywhere.” The WikiReader certainly does that; several online reviews have praised its value in museums and tourist locations, where data plan charges would make a connected device prohibitively expensive to operate.
For the past 12 months or so, we’ve heard a lot of talk about mini-laptops running ARM-based processors. These so-called “smartbooks” feature low power ARM processors which means that while they can’t run Windows XP or 7, they can run Linux, last for a very long time on a charge, and some feature integrated 3G connectivity and HD video acceleration features. You also get the ability to receive emails, instant messages, and other data even while the computer is in sleep mode. In other words, they’re like a cross between a smartphone and a netbook, which explains the whole “smartbook” name.
All over the web are warnings that netbooks are doomed.
No. This is about wishful thinking by the monopolists who need high retail prices to hide the price of their part of the PC, CPUs and licences for software. If prices for netbooks rise, fewer will be sold. Fortunately entrepreneurs all over the world continue to make less expensive netbooks. ARM will dominate netbooks in 2010. You can trade a lot of day-long battery-life for some hair-drying CPUs anytime.
The rather interesting element is the fact that these are white-box models. This means that the devices will bear the brands of other companies, which implies that Foxconn may have already completed its marketing plans concerning the PCs. If the company has already decided on which companies will sell its product, the actual availability may ramp up over the next couple of months or so.
An Nvidia Tegra chipset (given the late 2010 rumoured release one guesses Tegra 2.0) powered by an ARM CPU and replete with 64GB SSD and 2GB RAM will drive a 10.1 inch HD-ready, 1,280 x 720 resolution touchscreen screened device. The usual array of extras such as WiFi and 3G, Bluetooth and Ethernet are also on the reported tech spec list.
Furthermore, the netbook will also probably be powered by an ARM CPU, and will feature Nvidia’s Tegra system-on-a-chip for notably enhancing the audio and video capabilities of the device. However, it is not certain whether all the upcoming Chrome OS-based netbooks will strictly adhere to the rumored specs.
Last week, Google banned my PHP port of JSMin from Google Code due to a quibble over a line in the license stating that “The Software shall be used for Good, not Evil”, which they believe makes the license non-free. When I asked Google’s Chris DiBona whether all Google Code projects including JSMin would be subject to bans due to this clause in the license, he replied, “Sadly, yes”.
Google’s Chris DiBona emailed me this morning to tell me that unless I removed a specific line from the license of my jsmin-php project (a PHP port of Douglas Crockford’s JSMin), Google Code would no longer host the project.
After the Emmys, the Grammys are onto it as well. That is, the new Grammy.com is using Drupal — and Pressflow to be specific. The Grammy Awards, or Grammys, are presented annually by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences for outstanding achievements in the music industry. Cool!
Most of the offers can be broadly categorized into collective intelligence, crowd-creation, voting/opinion and research. Procter & Gamble’s NPD program Connect + Develop, My Starbucks Idea and AT&T’s “Mark the spot” are all great examples of collective intelligence and, of course, everyone knows about Linux. They harness the power of interested parties to provide ideas and thoughts as they happen, like a permanent, active, feedback loop.
Today the Icinga Team releases the Icinga Core 1.0. This is a milestone for both the team and the project as a whole. After many months of hard work we are proud to bring you a stable, alternative monitoring solution. This release includes many changes as suggested by the community and in particular the inclusion of Oracle in IDOUtils.
The H1N1 pandemic, the Copenhagen climate talks, the restart of the world’s biggest experimental device—2009 sped by many scientifically relevant mile markers. The year also celebrated several important past events: It saw the bicentennial of Charles Darwin’s birth and the 150th anniversary of the publication of his Origin of Species; the 40th anniversary of the first humans on another world; and the 400th of Galileo’s report that proved not all heavenly bodies circle the Earth. The year also marked the first occasion in which the science Nobel Prize committee honored more than one woman—four, in fact.
Through the detailed and vivid conversations, you get the keen sense of overwhelming desperation and preservation that overtakes the executives of the sinking financial system. Some of the chief participants failed, some were triumphant, and some were pathetically bailed out. History will ultimately be the true arbiter of whether government and Wall Street averted, mitigated, postponed, or contributed to the financial collapse. Regardless, Sorkin brilliantly encapsulates this emotional panicked period in our history that will never be erased.
Shenzhen Nanshan is among 68 Chinese state-controlled companies including China Eastern Air Holding Co. and China National Aviation Holding Co. that lost money on derivative products sold by banks including Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, Merrill Lynch & Co. and Citigroup Inc., according to the State- owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission.
Betting against their own securities has prompted numerous investigations of Goldman Sachs and other Wall Street institutions. Prior to the financial collapse, Goldman and others figured out a way to package risky securities, such as subprime mortgages, and sell them to investors who were told they were buying sound investments. Little did the investors know that the firms selling the synthetic collateralized debt obligations (or CDOs) turned around and bet that the CDOs would fail—costing pension funds and insurance companies billions of dollars.
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and brokerage regulators are examining how Wall Street firms bet against mortgage-linked securities to profit as their clients took losses, people familiar with the matter said.
The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, which polices broker-dealers, is looking into whether firms such as Goldman Sachs Group Inc. broke rules when selling products known as synthetic collateralized debt obligations, one of the people said. The people declined to be identified because the inquiry is confidential.
How charitable. This is the bank that intends to distribute about $22bn in remuneration to its employees this year – more than $700,000 each – at the height of the worst recession since the war. Money, of course, partly earned through government support of the US banking sector paid for with taxpayers’ funds.
But Obama, unlike Paterson, is being disingenuous; aside from a few snotty remarks, the president hasn’t done much to get the banks lending right now. In fact, his policies have fostered an environment that allows Wall Street to make money — bundles of it as demonstrated by Goldman Sachs’ $20 billion bonus pool — at the expense of helping Main Street. Obama has supported Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke’s near-zero interest rate policy; he’s basically declared every big bank Too Big To Fail, meaning the federal government will save the likes of Goldman Sachs if it should somehow bet wrong in the trading markets, as it did last year.
Fast forward 20 years and switch from Salomon Brothers to Goldman Sachs. At this time, Goldman sellers were offering their customers a new product, “synthetic collateralized debt obligations.” Synthetic CDOs allowed the buyers to bet heavily on the continued health of the housing market. In a synthetic CDO, however, Goldman was fundamentally making the opposite bet. The buyers were in essence an insurance company. They received regular payments from Goldman as long as the housing market improved. These payments were analogous to the premiums paid on an insurance policy. Like an insurance company, however, the investors were also on the hook for a big payout if the housing market collapsed. Which it did. (For more details, see “Banks Bundled Bad Debt, Bet Against It and Won.”)
This choice says a lot about the malaise in global finance. It also seems to say a lot about the “collusion” of media and big business and their desire to pull the wool over the eyes of sane people everywhere–sort of like Blankfein’s words that the investment bank was “doing God’s work.”
Well, here’s an interesting one. There were reports last week claiming that Reuters had spiked a story about hedge fund big shot Steven Cohen after Cohen complained to Reuters management. While Reuters has since strongly denied the charge, it is interesting to note (as sent in by reader JJ) that at least one Reuters blogger complained quite vocally about this decision.
Reuters editors last week killed a story by investigative reporter Matthew Goldstein about hedge fund trader Steven Cohen after Cohen complained to top Thomson Reuters executives that he was being persecuted by the news agency’s reporting, sources at Reuters said.
Goldstein’s story was an “incremental” advance in the reports swirling around Cohen that he engaged in insider trading during the 1980s, Reuters sources said. There have been reports that Cohen is next in the sights of the SEC following the Galleon case, which featured SEC wiretapping the conversations of hedge fund manager Raj Rajaratnam.
What else will shape the housing market in the next decade? One of the biggest questions is how the government will extricate itself from control of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. The two companies, which were on the brink of failure in the fall of 2008 and seized by the government, own or guarantee about half of all home mortgages.
By any measure, the last decade was a rotten one. It started with a stolen election and the worst terrorist attack in American history. It is ending this week with the United States mired in two wars and deep into a catastrophic recession.
It’s hard to imagine that the next decade could be worse, but could it?
There are worrisome signs. An increasing number of economists are saying that without major government intervention, the next ten years could be a “jobless decade.” “It will be the mother of all jobless recoveries,” predicts economic historian John Steel Gordon.
While the stimulus package passed by Congress was big and slowed the pace of job loss, the problem was even bigger. The Economic Policy Institute estimates that the Obama stimulus bill has created or saved between 170,000 and 235,000 jobs per month starting in the second quarter of 2009. Yet, Princeton economist Paul Krugman says that the country would have to produce an additional 300,000 jobs per month for five years to achieve full employment.
Despite proclaiming a need to cut medical costs, the Senate health care reform bill contains a provision that will benefit large drug companies while hurting manufacturers of generic drugs. As it is now written, the bill will keep less-expensive generic drugs from entering the market for fully 12 years, far longer than the five to seven years President Barack Obama had advocated.
And here is Boing Boing’s response to Ms. Moore’s attorneys (PDF), prepared by Marc Mayer of the law firm MS&K. The letter is a thing of beauty, and I encourage you to read it in full.
The letter from Moore’s attorney, Martin D. (“Marty”) Singer, claims that we set out to slander Moore (Boing Boing did not, nor did Mr. Citrano). The letter also includes denials from people involved in the production of the W Magazine cover who insist that the image was not manipulated at all.
Since receiving this letter, we have discovered that an alternate, and seemingly more anatomically correct version of the W magazine cover (with more hip-flesh) was published in W’s South Korean edition. We have also been informed that Ms. Moore’s attorneys have sent similar letters to other blogs that discussed the possible digital alteration of the US cover image. The story is now being covered by a number of other news organizations and blogs.
Many ISPs fail to expand broadband to all of their potential customers, which is sometimes understandable given the expense. However, we’ve documented countless times how those same ISPs often then lobby to have laws passed or engage in sleazy activities to prevent those towns and cities — or anyone else — from wiring those un-served regions. ISPs get their cake and eat it too — saving money on expansion, while avoiding a future competitor should the local incumbent someday change their mind and decide to service that market. It shouldn’t work that way — but it does, and all too often.
But Bittorrent can’t be used for any legitimate purpose, right? And musicians can’t possibly embrace what the technology allows? Once again, we’re seeing why those who embrace what technology allows will do just fine moving forward. It’s only those who think that the answer is to bring out the lawyers and try to hold back progress who will find themselves struggling to create business models that work.
Barry Sookman’s most recent post titled Toying with funny math to downplay Canada’s role as a piracy haven is, at best, inaccurate. Since I’m suffering from a nasty head cold I’m only going to cover the most noticeable errors – and then go back to suffering.
In paragraph three, Barry claims that Mininova is down. A quick visit to the site shows that he is in error, that Mininova is still in operation. He also claims that the court ordered it shut down. This is incorrect. The court ordered that certain torrents be removed. Nothing more. Nothing less.
In paragraph four, Barry claims that a court ordered that the The Pirate Bay be shut down. He does not mention that an appeal has been filed. In a later paragraph he claims that The Pirate Bay will be shut down shortly, however the shut down order is on hold until the appeal is complete. To the best of my knowledge a court date has not been picked as yet, and since the shut down cannot take effect until after the appeal, his claim that it will be shut down shortly is specious at best.
In an effort to be subversive, I forwarded the email to Fred with a note that said “Wild how the music licensing stuff is stupid.” He responded immediately with “Yup. Rights holders fuck everything up.” I wonder what the machines think of that?