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10.27.10

Links 27/10/2010: Red Hat CEO on Growth, Fedora 14 Preview

Posted in News Roundup at 9:41 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • The $100.00 (USD) Coolest Linux Workspace Contest Winner

    The month-long voting is over so it is about time to announce the winner of our $100.00 (USD) coolest Linux workspace contest. The people have spoken, and from our five finalists only one has emerged victorious.

  • Less is More

    • Old hardware a handicap? Au contraire!

      Whoa, waitaminute. A 1.7Ghz machine with a healthy 256Mb will be a handicap to learning Linux? A handicap? Even when armed with lightweight applications?

      [...]

      But I can also say that I learned a lot more about Linux from a wildly unpredictable 100Mhz machine, and even more from a rancid little K6-2, than I ever did from a dual core Thinkpad. I enjoy having it, but I don’t count it among my educational treasures.

    • More reasons to learn from old computers

      I’m still a bit wired over the post from a day or two ago, insisting that a 1.7Ghz machine with a healthy amount of RAM and a decent-sized hard drive would be a detriment to anyone learning Linux.

      More and more that strikes me as completely counterintuitive, and for plenty of reasons. I already explained that an older machine is a challenge, whereas a newer machine is a luxury.

      But honestly, when someone wants to learn Linux, or at least try it out, I don’t recommend they go buy a new computer. I suggest they find a 4- or 5-year-old laptop, and learn the ropes that way.

      And aside from three reasons to buy old machines instead of new ones — power demands, noise levels and Linux compatibility — there are other good reasons to use an old computer to learn about penguins.

    • Minimalist Distros are the Way to Go (Not Ubuntu)

      Ubuntu, the most user-friendly of the Linux distributions; Ubuntu, the harbinger of the day of the Linux desktop to the world; Ubuntu, the crowned king of all distributions; Ubuntu — the Operating System that has now killed my desktop for the third consecutive upgrade in a row. This is ridiculous. I have been an Ubuntu user and supporter since the seventh grade, when I first started using Linux, but this is just too much. I know I’ve denounced Ubuntu and then reconsidered at least once in the past, but this is different, this is intolerable.

      My final unfortunate experience with Ubuntu began last week. I had just run the upgrade to the new release, version 10.10. When turning the computer on in the morning, I had expected to be greeted by my customary desktop with maybe a new theme at the most. However, I was welcomed by a bleak login prompt on tty1 — the command line. The new upgrade had ruined my configuration so that the X server would no longer start the graphical display. Fail. Ubuntu has ruined my desktop three times in the last two years, not coincidentally in the wake of each six-month release. That makes its record of stability in my experience worse than both Gentoo and Arch, each of which are supposed to be horribly difficult to use.

  • Audiocasts/Shows

  • Ballnux

    • Samsung Galaxy Tab review

      Overall though, the Galaxy Tab is the best non-Apple tablet to date, and it plays well against Apple’s impressive iPad. As the Android OS and app developers catch up with the new form factor, the gap is certain to narrow further.

  • Kernel Space

    • What is the Linux Kernel and What Does It Do?

      With over 13 million lines of code, the Linux kernel is one of the largest open source projects in the world, but what is a kernel and what is it used for?

    • The kernel column #93 by Jon Masters

      Linux averages 5.5 changes per hour, every hour of every day, and is perhaps one of the most active software projects in human history. Jon Masters charts these changes every month in quite possibly the best technical column in human history…

    • What’s The Fastest Linux Filesystem On Cheap Flash Media?

      Flash drives and SD Cards are getting bigger, faster and cheaper. They’re not just for sucking down snaps from your pocket camera any more: they’re backup storage, portable homedirs, netbook expansion … you name it.

      Most arrive with a VFAT filesystem, and usually stay that way. But for a lot of applications, this is not ideal. Curious if the filesystem made any difference, we did what Feynman would have done: tested some.

      For once, testing gave a pretty clear answer. So what is the fastest filesystem linux folks can use on their flash media?

      Ext4.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC)

      • KSnapshot gains free-region capture

        From time to time I need to take a screenshot of some application or a part of my desktop. The obvious solution in KDE is KSnapshot, which is perfect if you want a rectangularly-shaped picture.

      • becoming a cog

        One more example is how the Git services for the KDE community keep improving, from Git integration in KDevelop to the rapidly maturing infrastructure the sysamdin team have been tooling up for us for some time now. projects.kde.org continues to get better and better and Tom is doing an awesome job of keeping everyone informed about that process.
        V

    • GNOME Desktop

      • Fun facts

        Percentage of gnome-shell code written by Red Hat by lines [:] 91%

  • Distributions

    • 3 Nice Live Linux CDs to Try

      1. Mepis

      [...]

      2. Kubuntu

      [...]

      3. PCLinuxOS

    • Red Hat Family

      • Red Hat CEO: Growth demands more space

        “In all honesty, we’re out of space,” Whitehurst said following a Harvard Alumni Association panel discussion Tuesday night that brought four area CEOs to Cisco’s campus. “We’ve rented all they have around us.”

      • Marico reduces costs and increases performance with Red Hat Solutions

        Red Hat announced that leading Indian FMCG major, Marico, is powering its SAP-based mission-critical ERP system on Red Hat Enterprise Linux.

      • Fedora

        • Fedora 15: Lovelock, Pushcart, Sturgis, Asturias?

          Earlier this month the Fedora community began proposing names for Fedora 15 with the proposals ranging from names like Malmstrom to Fortaleza and Gutzwiller. The list, however, has now been narrowed down to five potential candidates for the Fedora 15 codename.

        • Fedora 14 preview

          You may have noticed that Fedora 14 makes its release next week. Curious to see what was going to be in the new version, and on a suggestion from pyxie, I grabbed a copy and installed it on my USB flash drive.

    • Debian Family

      • Canonical/Ubuntu

        • Attention Mark Shuttleworth: Don’t forget most important feature for Ubuntu 11.04

          That “feature” is marketing. Let me explain.

        • 10 things I would like to see in the upcoming Ubuntu 11.04 release

          It amazes me how quickly Canonical releases Ubuntu. Every six weeks, like clockwork, a new release is out in the wild. And every new release brings with it a host of improvements, squashes bugs, and introduces new features. But there are some features and improvements I have yet to see. So I thought I would take this opportunity to spell out a few things I’d like to see come along for Ubuntu 11.04 (Natty Narwhal).

        • Ubuntu Needs Unity To Fight Mac, Windows
        • Unity on the Desktop

          Firstly, it’s good to mention that it’s actually “Unity as the default desktop if your graphics card and drivers support it”. We’ve learnt a harsh lesson this cycle about where Unity works well, where it should work but doesn’t and finally where we just can’t expect it to work.

          Therefore, it is going to be a primary focus this cycle to enable Unity on as many chipsets as possible. We will be much more lenient about what OpenGL features are required (allowing runtime fallbacks through detection and through quirks files for those chipsets that lie about their capabilities).

        • A bright new future for Compiz

          So, I was expecting this to be announced at Mark’s keynote this morning, but it looks like good ol’ Jono Bacon beat me to it :) Nevertheless, I won’t let him steal my thunder.

        • Compiz Brings New Eye Candy to You and Ubuntu

          A mere four months since the 0.9.0 release, which was the first release in quite a while, Compiz developers brought out version 0.9.2. Sam Spilsbury, developer of Compiz, announced this release on the Compiz mailing list as well as his personal blog on Sunday, October 24.

          This release brought a few new features and lots of stability and performance fixes. Splisbury says it should be ready for general usage.

        • Zeitgeist’s bright future in Unity

          This post will be about Unity stuff I am interested (and maybe start working on), I am not a designer but I can give it a bit of a kick off by implementing zeitgeist-powered backends.

        • Ubuntu getting a new icon theme

          Whilst the big news in Mark Shuttleworth’s opening address at the Ubuntu Developer Summit was regarding Unity he also touched upon the creation of a new Ubuntu icon theme – one that will be in keeping with the Ambiance and Radiance GTK themes.

        • Ubuntu Unity Sucks

          It started harmless. I saw a message about a new release being available (10.10 instead of 10.4). I’m used to smooth updates in Linux, so I clicked the upgrade button without further thinking.

          All went smooth indeed. About 2 hours later my netbook was ready to reboot. After doing so I was greeted with a new wallpaper behind the login screen. So far so good. I logged in and…

          ..was surprised. What was that? Not the UI I was used to and which was the main cause to install UNE in the first place.

        • General Disillusionment with Ubuntu

          I’m not going to say anything about Unity for myself because I haven’t tried it (and it will likely not happen). What I will say is that it isn’t surprising to me that more and more distributions today are switching from an Ubuntu base to a Debian base, because Debian is entirely community-driven and is usually more stable. That’s why my Fresh OS respins are based off of Linux Mint “Debian”, that’s why #! moved to a Debian base, and that’s why Manhattan OS (which was based on Ubuntu not too long ago) moved to a Debian testing base (along with rebranding itself to Jupiter OS). Folks, expect to see a lot more of these types of base shifts happening in the near future, as Ubuntu starts to really chart its own course.

        • Unity and the Community

          As Susan wrote earlier, Mark Shuttleworth made the announcement of Unity’s promotion to the big time at the Ubuntu Developer Summit. Much of the early criticisms of this move are from developers who claim that Canonical is more interested in pushing the Ubuntu brand than working together with the community.

        • A modest proposal re. Unity

          Having slept on it since writing my initial reactions yesterday I now have a proposal for Canonical & GNOME, which I hope the people concerned will consider.

          Yesterday, I said “the best possible outcome I can see is that one of the two projects will become an obvious choice within a year or so”. So my proposal is this: let’s have a bake-off, Unity vs GNOME Shell, under the big tent of the GNOME project.

        • Install and use Ubuntu Unity before it’s released
        • Is Unity the Right Interface for Desktop Ubuntu?

          Canonical shook the Linux world yesterday when it announced that the next version of Ubuntu — “Natty Narwhal,” or version 11.04 — will no longer use the GNOME interface by default. Instead, Natty will feature Unity, the multitouch and 3D-enabled interface that made its debut earlier this month in the distribution’s netbook edition of Maverick Meerkat, or Ubuntu 10.10.

        • Has Ubuntu exceeded the Ben & Jerry’s hippie threshold?

          Is this the end of Canonical and Ubuntu’s Free Software ideals? Hardly. But the company has come to the realization that in order for Linux to have a chance on the desktop, it has to make some hard choices and compromise. It can’t sit and wait for the GNOME Foundation to twiddle its thumbs and lag behind in desktop innovation from Windows, Mac OS, or even KDE.

        • More Ubuntu tweaks

          Ubuntu Tweak (now on Version 0.5.7) has evolved quite a bit since the early days, adding more functionality along the way.

        • The United Colours of Ubuntu
        • Ubuntu 10.10 (“Maverick Meerkat”) Netbook Edition

          The biggest mistake you can make with Ubuntu 10.10 Netbook Edition is to directly equate it with the new Ubuntu 10.10 Desktop Edition of the same distro.

        • Meet Ian Booth

          Ian: I only recently started working on Launchpad. I work on the “Code” team, reporting to Tim Penhey.

          We deliver functionality associated with managing and importing branches, merge proposals, code reviews; Bazaar-Launchpad integration; the XML-RPC and web services API etc.

          Personally, I’ve also done some work on improving the menu rendering performance and other infrastructure type things.

        • UDS-N Day 1

          The idea of Ubuntu Developer Summit if you’re not sure what it’s all about just yet is “Getting face time together is really important” it helps us to get to know one another, puts the faces to the names/nicks which will help folks become more productive for the coming cycle.
          There track have been re organised to get more cross-pollination:

          * Application Developers

          * Package Selection and System Defaults

          * Performance

          * Multimedia

          * ununtu the project

          * hardware compatibility

          * cloud infrastructure

        • UDS Narwhal – Tuesday
        • What’s Next for Ubuntu?

          At the Natty UDS currently underway in Florida, Ubuntu founder Mark Shuttleworth has provided a new desktop direction with a move to the Unity shell, instead of the GNOME Shell. Moving beyond just the user interface, Shuttleworth has also shared some insight into where he sees Ubuntu headed in the next five years.

        • How relevant is Ubuntu?

          Even Microsoft knows the desktop is dying. It’s not going to disappear, any more than the TV is going to disappear. But the excitement in technology lies elsewhere, and it’s not coming back. (Might as well wait for the Fugees to get back together.)

        • Flavours and Variants

          • Linux Mint 10 Review

            Linux Mint 10 is a good release that builds upon great features from both Ubuntu 10.10 and Linux Mint 9. The new features are not an example of aggressive development, but still provide enough enhancements to justify an upgrade/installation. In fact, I would still recommend Linux Mint 10 to those Mint users who can’t be bothered to upgrade, if only to enjoy the latest Ubuntu, Kernel and GNOME updates and features.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Sub-notebooks

      • Linux Netbook Review: ZaReason Terra HD Netbook

        It’s been a couple of years since I reviewed a laptop from ZaReason, the UltraLap SR. Now I’m reviewing something a bit smaller — the ZaReason Terra HD.

        [...]

        What I liked: Nice big screen for a Netbook; great looks and construction for something in a Netbook class machine

      • Nicholas Negroponte

        Nicholas Negroponte wants to give laptop computers to children in third-world countries so they can communicate with the rest of the world. (05:21)

Free Software/Open Source

  • 5 (More) Free and Open Source CRM Software

    5 (More) Free and Open Source CRM Software: We have already featured here several free and open-source CRM software but due to popular demand, we will showcase five more CRM tools. As I’ve already explained before, CRM software is used for effectively managing a company’s interactions with clients and possible customers by organizing, automating, and synchronizing business processes.

  • Be Open To Open Source

    Looking at the evolving scenario, it will become imperative for solutions providers to have an open source play. Many solutions providers we spoke to said that the lack of skill sets and non-availability of applications have been the key reasons for not providing open source solutions.

    This partner perception was probably correct a couple of years ago. Today, the availability of open source professionals has considerably improved, and the overall open source ecosystem has matured. Vendors such as Red Hat have built a portfolio of end-to-end offerings, including virtualization.

  • 50 Awesome Open Source Apps You’ve (Probably) Never Heard Of

    Experts estimate that the number of open source apps available doubles every fourteen months. Sourceforge alone has more than 260,000 projects, and with so many open source apps now available from so many different repositories, it can be hard to keep up.

    For this list, we’ve highlighted some newer open source tools you might have missed. We also included some gems from obscure categories, like Mandelbulbs, gene sequencing, and knitting, to name just a few. Other open source tools on the list are good projects that are overshadowed by older, better-known projects, and at least one is an old favorite that has a new name.

  • Open-Source Software in the Enterprise

    The topic of open-source software has been steeped in debate since the development and licensing took root in the 1980s and picked up steam with the proliferation of the Internet in the decade that followed.

  • Annual awards source of pride

    It’s time for the annual New Zealand Open Source Awards, and the 31 finalists show an extraordinary range of innovation and collaboration.

    Among the three nominations for best open source project are: SilverStripe, a New Zealand-made content management system that has been downloaded more than 325,000 times globally in less than four years; Kete, a digital library project, and R, a programming language and software environment that has become the lingua franca for statistical computing and graphics.

  • Events

    • Open Source Think Tank Paris: Summary

      We had a great time in Paris at our Third Open Source Think Tank this year! We had over 120 attendees, primarily from Europe http://thinktankeu.olliancegroup.com/index.php.

      The two case studies were very different and illuminated the range of the open source market: Airbus and the Danish Government. The Airbus discussion was particularly fascinating as they described a product development cycle of twenty years with a product life cycle of forty years. Software has become critical to their planes, but given these time periods, proprietary software has significant disadvantages: (1) most proprietary software companies are likely to be acquired or go out of business during such a long period and (2) even if the proprietary software company still exists, the technology will be dated and the company may be reluctant to invest in maintaining it. An open source approach overcomes many of these problems.

    • GPL compliance workshop on December 2nd in Taipei, Taiwan

      The OSSF at Academia Sinica in Taiwan has kindly organized a full-day GPL compliance workshop on December 2nd in Taipei, Taiwan.

  • Oracle

    • OpenOffice.org Council members resign – Update

      During an Internat Relay Chat (IRC) meeting of the council on the 14th of October, Louis Suárez-Potts, Community manager of OpenOffice.org for Oracle, called for members of The Document Foundation to resign from the OpenOffice.org Council. Christoph Noack, former OpenOffice.org Product Development Representative, and Florian Effenberger, former OpenOffice.org marketing project lead and German marketing contact, have responded with formal resignation emails.

    • New: OpenOffice.org 3.3.0 Release Candidate 2 (build OOO330m12) available

      OpenOffice.org 3.3.0 Release Candidate 2 is now available on the download website.

    • OpenOffice.org and the Unnecessary Ultimatum

      Last week, the OpenOffice.org Community Council requested the resignation of members who supported The Document Foundation, the recent fork of the OpenOffice.org project. This week, the results are revealed: resignations of key people, and a growing tendency to choose sides in the community. And the tragedy is that none of this angst seems necessary.

      The request follows the recent creation of The Document Foundation (TDF), to provide an independent governing body for the development of the OpenOffice.org (OOo) code, and the announcement of LibreOffice, The Document Foundation’s fork of the OpenOffice.org code.

  • CMS

    • The commercialization of a volunteer-driven Open Source project

      Within the Drupal project, we don’t have a paid staff to advance the core software. However, many of the developers who contribute to critical parts of the Drupal code base make their living by building complex Drupal websites. Some Drupal developers are paid by customers to contribute their expertise to the Drupal project or are employed by companies ‘sponsoring’ Drupal development. Tens of thousands of developers are working with Drupal today, and many of them contribute back to the project. Albeit different, neither Joomla or Drupal are exclusively a volunteer run project, and that is one of the reasons we’ve grown so big. Ditto for WordPress that gets a lot of help from Automattic.

    • A Tour of the Redesigned Drupal.org

      Last month Drupal.org had over 2 million unique visitors, many of them coming to the home page to learn about and evaluate Drupal. The home page was designed with these visitors in mind. Our UX research revealed that Drupal.org is primarily a searching site, so the home page features a large search box with optional search filters. The rest of the home page focuses on the needs of Drupal evaluators, including a section showcasing the newest and best Drupal sites.

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

    • Master’s In Free Software and Free Standards

      The Free Technology Academy (FTA) and the Free Software Foundation (FSF) announced today their partnership in the FTA’s Associate Partner Network. The Network aims to expand the availability of professional educational courses and materials covering the concepts and applications of Free Software and free standards (http://ftacademy.org/standards).

      The FTA consists of an advanced virtual campus with course modules which can be followed entirely on-line. The learning materials are all published under a free license and can be accessed by anyone, but learners enrolled in the FTA will be guided by professional teaching staff from one of the three participating universities. The FTA aims to enable IT professionals, students, teachers and decision makers to undertake accredited professional education modules in free software studies.

Leftovers

  • Science

    • Top 10 tech tricks we’re sick of seeing in movies

      Think how awesome it was the first time you saw a lightsaber in action. Or how your mind was officially shredded when Neo mastered the Matrix. Technology in movies is cool. When artfully filmed, gadgets, gizmos, robots, and computers can captivate and amaze audiences.

      But for every thrilling example of cool-ass tech, Hollywood seems to produce a tired, dated cliche. There’s the obligatory no-cell-phone-service scene in horror flicks. There are robots with ATTITUDE in science fiction. There are impossible user interfaces in action films. The list goes on and on.

  • Security

    • UK should not put up with US airport security – BA chairman

      Britain should stop “kowtowing” to US demands over airport security, the chairman of British Airways, Martin Broughton, said yesterday, adding that American airports did not implement some checks on their own internal flights.

      He suggested the practice of forcing passengers on US-bound flights to take off their shoes and to have their laptops checked separately in security lines should be dropped, during a conference of UK airport operators in London.

  • Finance

    • Shrinking Bank Revenue Signals Worst Decade of Growth

      Shrinking revenue at U.S. banks, led by Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Citigroup Inc., may continue to fall as the industry heads into what could be its slowest period of growth since the Great Depression.

      After the six largest U.S. banks posted record revenue in 2009, combined net revenue fell by an average of 8 percent in the third quarter from a year earlier and 16.3 percent over the last two quarters, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Revenue so far this year is down by 4.1 percent, driven by declines in everything from trading at Goldman Sachs to home lending at Bank of America Corp. New laws restricting account and credit-card fees, as well as derivatives and capital rules, are also squeezing lenders.

    • Double whammy hits big local real-estate portfolio

      When investment-banking giant Goldman Sachs bought 11 Seattle and Eastside office buildings and complexes in 2007 — overnight becoming one of the market’s largest landlords — there wasn’t much talk of risk.

    • Homeowners Protest HAMP: ‘It’s Just A Scam And The Banks Are Getting Everything’

      Judy Stratton said she and her husband Harry have tried since January 2009 to modify the mortgage on their home in Stayton, Ore. after a drop-off in demand for Harry’s floor maintenance services. In August, Stratton said, they received a rejection letter from their bank saying they did not qualify for help per the Obama administration’s Home Affordable Modification Program.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality/DRM

    • Nook Deletes All Your Files, Barnes & Nobles Shrugs

      If you own a Nook, you better make sure you regularly update its software, otherwise you might lose all your files that are not B&N books. That’s what happened to Michael, and customer service told him that it can happen if the device hasn’t been updated recently. The updates are too much for it to handle so it has to spontaneously jettison all foreign objects! Or something like that.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Trade deal would include increased protection for brand-name drugs

      Canada’s pharmaceutical industry and the European Union have been quietly lobbying for changes that could give brand-name drugs several years more patent protection here — and potentially add hundreds of millions of dollars to Canadian medication costs annually.

    • Copyrights

      • Facts and Figures on Copyright Three-Strike Rule in Korea

        The legislation was passed on April 22, 2009 and came into force on July 24, 2009. By the end of July 2010, there has been no suspension against an individual user or a web site by the order of the Minister. However, the Copyright Commission has recommended ISPs to suspend accounts of copyright infringing users in thirty-one cases, and all of the individual users have been disconnected to the corresponding ISPs for less than one month.

      • Predicting the fate of Bill C-32 is like predicting the next election, says Geist

        Michael Geist isn’t shy about engaging in a “copyfight.”

        The very title of his new book alludes to his last public fight—waged on Twitter, blogs, and in the news media—with Heritage Minister James Moore.

Clip of the Day

The Digital Prism Screencast – MintUpload


Credit: TinyOgg

Links 27/10/2010: Unity Debate Carries on, Fedora 14 Goes Gold, Qt Goes Modular, Community Goes Away From Oracle

Posted in News Roundup at 2:55 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Kernel Space

    • Reminder: short merge window

      So this is just a reminder – I’m trying to make sure that everybody is aware of the fact that in my 2.6.36 announcement, I was talking about trying to do a short merge window. Why? So that I could release -rc1 by the time the kernel summit started, despite the release of 2.6.36 being delayed.

    • LLVM’s Clang Is Onto Building The Linux Kernel

      In February of this year the Clang C/C++ compiler for LLVM hit the milestone of self-hosting itself after Clang’s C support was declared production ready (with the recently released LLVM 2.8, the C++ support is now deemed feature-complete) just last October. In April another achievement was reached for LLVM/Clang and that was building much of FreeBSD’s base operating system. Today another milestone has been hit and that’s building the Linux kernel for Debian to the point that it’s functional and can run the X.Org Server both on bare metal and this can also be done within a QEMU virtualized environment.

    • Intel Core i7 970 Gulftown On Linux

      When looking at the Core i7 970 at its stock speeds with turbo boost capabilities, the CPU performed very well and practically winning every benchmark. Granted, the CPUs we used for this comparison were limited to what we had access to, and that meant no six-core AMD tests or any of Intel’s Extreme Edition processors. The only tests where the Core i7 970 “Gulftown” did not come out the winner was with the software that did not have enough work to keep all twelve CPU threads busy and so the Core i7 870 commanded the lead due to its higher turbo frequency. The Core i7 870 quad-core with Hyper Threading can be boosted up to 3.60GHz when needed, but with the Core i7 970 in most cases you can overclock this CPU to at least 3.6GHz if not 4.0GHz. Of course, that is unless the motherboard (or cooling) limits you in doing so as we were faced with in this set of tests.

    • Graphics Stack

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC)

      • KDevelop 4.1 Brings Git Integration

        Roughly half a year and over a thousand commits after the first stable release, the KDevelop hackers are proud and happy to announce the release of KDevelop 4.1, the first of hopefully many feature releases. As with the previous bugfix releases, we also make available updated versions of the KDevelop PHP plugins.

    • GNOME Desktop

      • Ubuntu 11.04 Natty Narwhal – Unity replaces Gnome as default shell

        This move could anger at least some open source enthusiasts, but it probably shouldn’t. Ubuntu is clearly trying to further differentiate itself in a Linux world filled with UIs and user experiences that are extremely similar. It is a risky bet, but Shuttleworth says that developers need not worry because fragmentation can be avoided by using FreeDesktop.org to ensure that desktop integration mechanisms are standardized and interoperable. Whether that will be enough to alleviate all possible issues or silence the critics of this decision remains to be seen.

      • Open Ballot: do you support Ubuntu’s move to Unity?
      • A Desktop is a Desktop and should be a Desktop

        I was vocal enough in the past so I guess there is no need to reiterate again how much I dislike GNOME Shell… I see now Canonical is practically forking GNOME and replacing the Shell with Unity for the next Ubuntu release. In both the case of the Shell and Unity I can’t understand why people behind those projects persists in trying to make a Desktop OS act and feel like a mobile phone OS, like being targeted exclusive at clueless users.

      • Gwibber to gain Unity Quicklists, Geolocation Integration and more

        It is the super secret service that does all the work behind Gwibber. It is not without improvements this cycle, most notably Geolocation support, the ability to display maps about where your friends are, inside it and the the ability to store you and your friends’ profile data offline.

      • Ubuntu 11.04 To Ship Unity

        There is going to be some questions about this decision in relation to GNOME. I want to make something crystal clear: Ubuntu is a GNOME distribution, we ship the GNOME stack, we will continue to ship GNOME apps, and we optimize Ubuntu for GNOME. The only difference is that Unity is a different shell for GNOME, but we continue to support the latest GNOME Shell development work in the Ubuntu archives.

      • Compiz Will Find It’s Way Into Ubuntu Unity, Awesome!

        Compiz 0.9.2 was revealed recently with a number of major improvements, new features and even new plugins. But the future of Compiz became uncertain since both Gnome with its GNOME Shell and KDE with its new KWin has decided to go forward with the new integrated desktop approach. But hold on, Compiz might just become an ever more active and important project with Canonical deciding to integrate Compiz with Ubuntu Unity.

      • What’s really going on with Ubuntu Unity

        As Debian is to Ubuntu so GNOME is to Unity. What do I mean by that? Well, once upon a time there was an operating system called Debian. It was, and is, a powerful version of Linux. Outside of the Linux community though almost no one had ever heard of it. Then Ubuntu came along, built its own easy-to-use distribution on top of Debian, and now it’s arguably the most popular Linux in the world.

  • Distributions

    • Red Hat Family

      • Fedora

        • Fedora 15 Release Name

          Asturias
          Blarney
          Lovelock
          Pushcart
          Sturgis

        • Restoring GRUB in Fedora 13 after you’ve killed it

          I was doing an installation of Debian Squeeze to a USB drive, and unfortunately the Debian installer was eager to drop its own GRUB on the Master Boot Record — not on the drive to which I was installing Debian but to the first hard drive on the system, which contains Fedora 13 and Windows 7.

          So I had a dead GRUB on the Master Boot Record of my drive.

        • F14 release events
        • Fun facts
        • Lessons from the past
        • Fedora 14 goes gold

          So we just got done signing off on the gold images for Fedora 14. I’m amazingly proud of the whole little release management group – development (especially Anaconda team, who were awesome), release engineering, and QA teams: we had an unbelievably smooth ride through the Final validation testing stage. Unprecedented in the annals of Fedora history, we span one publicly-announced Test Compose (TC) build (there were five unannounced ones, but they were just to test small fixes which we needed an image compose to verify) and exactly one Release Candidate (RC) build, which was the build signed off as Gold today. We have never needed just one candidate build to get a release right before.

        • Fedora 14 Has Gone Gold

          Fedora 14 has gone gold. According to Adam Williamson, Red Hat Senior Quality Assurance Engineer, the Fedora 14 Final Release Go/No-Go Meeting resulted in the unanimous decision that RC1 should be declared Gold. Attendees were pleased that the quality tests had gone so smoothly and this is the first time a first release candidate would ship as final. An email with the good news will go out to mailing lists on Thursday.

    • Debian Family

      • Kicking the tires on Debian Squeeze

        Squeeze includes not only Shotwell but the GIMP and Inkscape. It also includes OpenOffice and what’s known as GNOME Office, the latter including Abiword and Gnumeric.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu

        • Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick Meerkat Released, What’s Next?
        • Video: UDS Natty 11.04 – Mark Shuttleworth’s Keynote
        • Ubuntu Developer Summit Natty, Monday

          I’m writing this blog post in a chair in the ‘Grand Caribe Convention Center’, at the end of the first day of the Ubuntu Developer Summit in preparation of the 11.04 Natty Narwhal release. It’s been a very interesting first day to say the least.

        • Ubuntu 9.04 Jaunty End Of Life

          Ubuntu 9.04 Jaunty has reached EOL (End Of Life). It is no longer supported by Ubuntu with security updates and patches. You have known this day was coming for 1.5 years, as all non-LTS Ubuntu releases are supported for only 18 months.

          I have no plans to delete the Ubuntu 9.04 Jaunty AMIs for EC2 published under the Alestic name in the foreseeable future, but I request, recommend, and urge you to please stop using them and upgrade to an officially supported, active, kernel-consistent release of Ubuntu on EC2 like 10.04 LTS Lucid or 10.10 Maverick.

        • This is it!

          This is it! Porting the Unity view to Compiz, comibing the Desktop and UNE editions, and defaulting to UNE for users who can run it. This is is a huge opportunity for the Ubuntu community to make something that can deliver free desktops to millions and millions of people who don’t have software freedome today. And also, having a lot of fun with our friends doing something really big along the way.

        • Ubuntu Font Family Uploaded To The Ubuntu 10.04, 9.10 And 8.04 Official Repositories

          The Ubuntu Font Family, which was only available for Ubuntu 10.10 and 11.04 (in the official repositories) has just been uploaded to the official Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx, 9.10 Karmic Koala and 8.04 Hardy Heron repositories.

        • Mint

          • The Digital Prism Screencast

            The Digital Prism Screencast covers both Drupal and Linux Mint.

          • MintBackup
          • MintUpload

            MintUpload is one of the Mint Tools, it’s a simple drag & drop FTP / SFTP / SCP client. It allows multiple services, folders or sites to be set up for different purposes. It’s a notification area widget and desktop widget.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Phones

      • Nokia/MeeGo

        • Report: Symbian Foundation To Close Down

          Well, this was inevitable. After Samsung and Sony Ericsson abandoning Symbian for their line of smartphones, and after Symbian Foundation executive director Lee Williams leaving the company for “personal reasons”, there’s now a report that the Symbian Foundation is winding down its operations, in preparation for closing up shop entirely.

          The news comes from a “source close to Symbian”, and basically states that Lee Williams’ successor as executive director, chief financial officer Tim Holbrow, has been appointed to wind down the Symbian Foundation’s operations. This seems in line with Holbrow’s background in finance, whereas Williams worked within Nokia on S60.

        • Qt is going modular

          Recently a project called “Qt Modularization” was initiated. This is a project that aims to modularize Qt at every level. As you may know already, Qt is currently modularized on the DLL level; each module has its own DLL. However, the project as a whole is still monolithic; all the code is being hosted in a single repository, and you cannot build a leaf module without building the modules on which it depends at the same time. This project aims to change that, so that the modules are hosted in different repositories, with a separate maintainer for each, and the modules may have different release schedules.

        • PR1.3 just released – now with Qt4.7 and Qt Mobility
        • Qt Quick

          Qt Quick provides a declarative framework for building highly dynamic, custom user interfaces from a rich set of QML elements. Qt Quick helps programmers and designers collaborate to build the fluid user interfaces that are becoming common in portable consumer devices, such as mobile phones, media players, set-top boxes and netbooks. Qt Quick consists of the QtDeclarative C++ module, QML, and the integration of both of these into the Qt Creator IDE. Using the QtDeclarative C++ module, you can load and interact with QML files from your Qt application.

        • Nokia N900 PR 1.3 Firmware Now Available

          ‘It also aligns the Qt application and UI framework with the planned version for the MeeGo 1.1 platfrom (Qt 4.7). Qt Mobility 1.0.2 APIs for mobile development are also included’. Essentially, even without MeeGo1.1 handsets, you can built now apps for it using the N900 running PR1.3, and Qt4.7.

Free Software/Open Source

  • Funambol replaces BES as Zimbra replaces Exchange

    Since setting up Zimbra, the email migration has gone quite well. The Outlook-connector works as expected and the more adventurous users are enjoying the fully-featured Zimbra web interface (which is much better than Outlook and Gmail, it could only be better if it made you lunch).

    [...]

    For agenda and contact synchronization I finally settled on Funambol, which has native mobile clients for Blackberry, iPhones, Nokia and WM and provides a J2ME client for other mobile platforms. Another plus over BES is that Funambol is both open source and very easy to deploy (it does require a server- and a client-side install though).

  • Moor Allerton Hall Primary School goes green with Inkscape at the North East CLC

    The children had been designing images to go on bags that could be sold for charity to aid flood victims in Pakistan. They came to work with Jelena to actualise their ideas. They were introduced to a piece of open-source software called Inkscape (download here) and were shown how to produce high quality designs and manged to achieve some incredible results in a total of only four hours.

  • Access to power for women in free software

    Of course, Grace Hopper is a conference for women in all sorts of computing, which includes lots of proprietary software and the ratio of women in proprietary software is significantly higher than it is in free software. At 20%+ vs 2% (respectively) one would expect the strategies and tactics to be a little different. Yet, despite the differences in the two communities, I don’t think advancement is out of reach for us.

  • AISL, the Italian Association of Free Software companies is born!

    AISL, the Italian Association of Free Software companies, recently debuted at the SMAU exhibit, the Italian leading ICT to discuss items related to digital technologies for business.

  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • Why Mozilla needs to pick a new fight

        One of my very first gigs when I started at PC Pro in 2007 was to interview Tristan Nitot, the president of Mozilla Europe. He was an affable chap, full of engaging answers to questions he’d no doubt heard a hundred times before. The interview practically wrote itself – though for the sake of appearances I held the pen.

        Safari for Windows had just been released and I asked Tristan what he thought of it. “I want Safari to have a significant market share. We want choice, we want innovation, as a company that’s what we stand for,” he told me.

  • Databases

    • LWN.net covers Drizzle beta and MariaDB RC

      LWN.net has a nice article on their front page on Drizzle’s and MariaDB’s recent beta and RC releases. it is behind a paywall for a few more days, but using the link below you can already read it.

  • Oracle

    • Oracle OpenOffice.org vs. TDF LibreOffice

      Whether the proposal was backed by Oracle or not, some long-term contributors are resigning already. On Friday, October 22, Charles H. Schulz announced his resignation in a blog post. He said it saddened him to have to resign, but was also a relief due to the tension at OpenOffice.org lately. He said the proposal and subsequent behaviors and discussions were unprofessional and showed a complete lack of understanding of Free and Open Source Software. He and others have stated that both projects will now lose out due to a competitive atmosphere instead of the desired cooperation. Schultz said the LibreOffice will now become an official fork since Oracle et al. “refuse to play ball” with The Document Foundation. Schultz will continue to contribute to The Document Foundation.

    • Resigning from my CC deputy role

      Hi Louis, all,

      This mail to inform you that I’m resigning from being Louis deputy at
      the CC. Please remove my role from the site. I unsubscribe from the list
      just after this mail.

      Kind regards
      Sophie [Gautier]

    • Resigning from my CC deputy role

      Hi Louis, all,

      With respect for my friends in the community I hereby resign from myposition as deputy for Charles in the community council.

      I’m sorry that this is a necessary step.

      Good luck in the future. I hope we can meet one day – still as friends and free software enthusiasts.

      Cheers,
      Leif Lodahl

    • Babylon 5 and the Great War of Java

      The Java Community Process truly was a great hope for peace. A neutral place where everyone from developers to vendors could work together to produce specifications, reference implementations and tests to drive the success of Java.

    • Java Is Under Siege. Will Oracle Let It Burn?

      For one thing, as much as people may have complained about Sun’s guarded control of the Java Community Process (JCP), concern is growing that Oracle’s commitment to Java may benefit it more than it benefits the wider Java community. Oracle, perhaps recognizing that it had a PR battle to win, has repeatedly emphasized Java’s central importance to it, leading the Java community to mostly give Oracle the benefit of the doubt.

  • Business

    • Marketing an open source business

      For example, when I teach a class about OpenNMS, I often ask the students if they are subscribed to the main OpenNMS discussion list. Usually, less than one in ten raise their hands. In fact, more than half of our commercial customers contact us for the first time without ever having installed the software. And that’s because our customers don’t come to us looking for open source software. They come to us because they want to find the best solution to their problems—and, in many cases, that solution includes open source software.

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

  • Openness/Sharing

    • Thoughts on Tim Wu’s Master Switch, Part 2 (On “Cycles” & “Market Failure”)

      I believe history – especially recent history — teaches us something very different. While information technology markets certainly go through cycles, they tend to oscillate between open and closed more fluidly than Wu suggests – and that dynamic is accelerating today. Moreover, during periods which Wu regards as more “closed,” things aren’t always as closed as he suggests. Or, more importantly, the “closed” models typically spawn more innovation than Wu and others bother acknowledging. It’s during what some regard as a market’s darkest hour when some of the most exciting forms of disruptive technologies and innovation are developing. Finally, to the extent some markets are completely locked-down for a time, it’s more often than not due to public policies that facilitate that lockdown or the “closing” of systems.

  • Standards/Consortia

    • Free HTML5 & CSS3 Web Templates

      This website has W3C-compliant, CSS3 and HTML5 -based website templates with a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.

Leftovers

  • Unions – the Big Society is you

    “Unions set to fight plans for £6bn cuts” was the front page news of the Financial Times yesterday, May 24th, in the aftermath of the well-trailed and assiduously leaked initial skirmish in what we are told is to be a long and multi-billion War of Austerity pitilessly fought out in the next couple of years.

  • Behold, the Next Media Titans: Apple, Google, Facebook, Amazon
  • Rand Paul supporters pin down and curb-stomp MoveOn activist – video

    Boingboingdave sez, “Outside the Conway-Rand Paul debate in KY, Paul supporters held down a woman from MoveOn while another stomped on her neck and head. The woman was attempting to present Paul with a mock Employee of the Month award from Republicorp representing the merger of the GOP and business interests controlling political speech.”

  • Who challenge J&K’s accession,should be put behind the bars :BJP

    Asserting that Jammu and Kashmir’s accession with Union of India is full and final, the BJP State President Shamsher Singh Manhas today said that no body can dare to challenge it and any one who does should be put behind the bars.

  • WikiLeaks ready to drop a bombshell on Russia. But will Russians get to read about it?

    The Kremlin had better brace itself for a coming wave of WikiLeaks disclosures about Russia, the website’s founder, Julian Assange, told a leading Moscow newspaper Tuesday.

  • Chinese Twitter user seized after supporting Liu Xiaobo
  • Nobel Peace Prize Winners on Behalf of Liu Xiaobo (updated)

    Fifteen past winners of the Nobel Peace Prize have issued a letter to Chinese president Hu Jintao, asking that the newest winner, Liu Xiaobo, be released from his 11-year prison sentence, and that his wife, Liu Xia, be freed from de-facto house arrest.

    Chinese police seized a woman from her house in the middle of the night after she tweeted her intention to demonstrate with a banner congratulating jailed dissident Liu Xiaobo on winning the Nobel peace prize, a friend said today.

  • WePay Drops 600 Pounds Of Ice In Front Of PayPal Conference, Hilarity Ensues

    If you’re headed to PayPal’s big developer conference in San Francisco today, you may spot an unusual landmark sitting in front of the Moscone Center: a massive, 600 pound block of ice with hundreds of dollars locked beneath the surface. The frigid booty comes compliments of the WePay team, and they’re trolling PayPal’s conference in an effort to tell everyone in attendance that “PayPal freezes your accounts” and that you should “unfreeze your money”… by switching to WePay, of course.

  • Digg caught gaming its own system, claims it was just a test

    The 159 dummy accounts all have obviously-fake names (such as the ‘dd1′ pictured) and curiously seem to only have contributed to submissions from Digg’s publishing partners. The suspicious activity began after an algorithm revision that took place on October 15.

  • Beleaguered Digg announces more layoffs

    On Monday, following a report in AllThingsD that publisher and Chief Revenue Officer Chas Edwards was bailing for a start-up, Pixazza, CEO Matt Williams e-mailed staffers to announce that “the burn rate is too high” at the company and that it would be laying off 25 of its 67 staffers, a total of 37 percent. At its peak–at the time of Adelson’s departure–the number of employees was slightly over 100.

  • Science

    • Topological insulators could help define fundamental constants

      A newly discovered class of materials known as “topological insulators” could help physicists to obtain new ways of defining the three basic physical constants – the speed of light (c); the charge of the proton (e); and Planck’s constant (h). That’s the claim of a team of physicists in the US, which has proposed a new experiment to measure the fine-structure constant (α), which is a function of h, c and e, by scattering light from such a material. Topological insulators are unusual in that electrical current flows well on their surface, but not through their bulk.

    • Quantum computing: Cheat Sheet
  • Health/Nutrition

    • Global food crisis forecast as prices reach record highs

      Rising food prices and shortages could cause instability in many countries as the cost of staple foods and vegetables reached their highest levels in two years, with scientists predicting further widespread droughts and floods.

      Although food stocks are generally good despite much of this year’s harvests being wiped out in Pakistan and Russia, sugar and rice remain at a record price.

  • Security

    • Tuesday’s security updates
    • System Administrators Gone Wild
    • Is Firesheep illegal?

      SocialMediaLand has been flooded in the last couple of days with stories about Firesheep. In case you have not heard about it, Firesheep is a Firefox add-on that allows anyone to hijack other people’s social network accounts in open wifi zones. The way the application works is staggeringly simple. If you login to a social media site, it is likely that you will be getting a session cookie to keep you logged in (usually turned on by the “Remember Me” button). This cookie will identify you as already having logged into the system, and therefore its possession will allow you to connect to the social media site without having to identify yourself again. So, now imagine you are in a coffee shop with open wifi and you have your laptop with you, and you are also logged in with a session cookie to Facebook or Twitter. Guess what? Any person in the possession of Firesheep will be able to intercept that session cookie, and therefore will be able to connect to your Facebook account. Not only that, Firesheep will capture all of the unencrypted cookies flying around in the open wifi environment.

    • Protecting journalists from Firesheep

      There’s been a great deal of coverage in the last day or so of Firesheep, a plugin for Firefox that lets you take over the Facebook and Twitter accounts of others on your local network. If you use Firesheep, you can pick one of the people on, say, the same open wireless at your nearby cafe, and then easily view, delete, and add comments using their name on these sites.

  • Defence/Police/Aggression

    • Fox News editorial: WikiLeaks employees should be declared ‘enemy combatants’

      Leading the attack on whistleblower web site WikiLeaks, Fox News editorialist and former Bush-era US State Department official Christian Whiton said on Monday that the US should classify the proprietors of WikiLeaks as “enemy combatants,” opening up the possibility of “non-judicial actions” against them.

      “So far, the Obama administration appears to have been asleep at the wheel in responding to this,” he wrote for FoxNews.com on Monday. “The same is true of the Democratic-controlled Congress, which has no fewer than ten committees of jurisdiction that could be doing something about this—but which are not.”

    • DoD Expanding Domestic Cyber Role

      The U.S. Defense Department is quietly taking on an expanding role in defending U.S. critical infrastructure from cyber attacks.

      In a break with previous policy, the military now is prepared to provide cyber expertise to other government agencies and to certain private companies to counter attacks on their computer networks, the Pentagon’s cyber policy chief, Robert Butler, said Oct. 20.

  • Finance

    • Where are the cuts in your country?

      As you may have seen, last week the OKF launched a new mini project called WhereAreTheCuts.org. Created by by Jordan Hatch and Richard Pope, the site enables UK citizens to find and report spending cuts near them. It had a pretty enthusiastic reception, and was picked up by the Telegraph and several local news sources.

  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

  • Internet/Net Neutrality/DRM

    • “books” On the Cambridge Train

      I’m coming back from JISC and again sitting on the floor among the Bromptons. Alice and Bob are in their regular seats. They must get out earlier than me or rush along platform Zero faster than the average punter. (The 1645 is not a good train to arrive just-in-time for unless you like bicycles). Anyway I catch part of their conversation.

    • BitTorrent Still Dominates Global Internet Traffic

      A new Internet traffic trends report released by the Canadian broadband management company Sandvine reveals that global P2P traffic is expanding, with BitTorrent as the key player. In North America, more than half of all upstream traffic (53.3%) on an average day can be attributed to P2P. The report further signals some really interesting regional differences in P2P use, such as the dominance of Ares in Latin America.

    • Watermark
  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • 3M claims ownership over purple

      “The color PURPLE is a trademark of 3M.”

    • Facebook Sues Faceporn, Apparently Believing It Owns The Words Face & Book

      Earlier this year we covered how Facebook was suing a site called Teachbook.com, claiming that any social network that ended in “book” was infringing on its trademarks.

    • Climate-Ready Crop Patents Present Danger For Biodiversity, Group Says

      A civil society group this week warned government officials gathered here against patents on “climate-ready” crops and what they characterised as an attempt to obtain an exclusive monopoly over plant gene sequences. The group asked states at the United Nations biodiversity conference to recognise that such patents are a threat to biodiversity and to the fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising from the utilisation of genetic resources.

      Yesterday, the ETC Group held a side event and presented a paper [pdf] alleging that the six largest global agrochemical and seed corporations are filing wide-scope patents with the aim of obtaining a monopoly on plant gene sequences that “could lead to control of most of the world’s plant biomass” for food, feed, fibre, fuel or plastics.

      Biomass is defined by the group as “material derived from living or recently-living biological organisms.” Biomass includes all plants and trees, microbes, but also by-products like organic waste from livestock, food processing and garbage, they said. “Climate-ready” crops are engineered to address climate change challenges.

    • Federal Circuit: Patentability of Isolated Genes

      In a landmark 2010 declaratory judgment decision, a Southern District of New York court invalidated claims from seven Myriad patents associated with the BRCA1/2 breast and ovarian cancer genes. The patents include both composition claims covering isolated DNA molecules and method claims covering the processes of detecting and screening for BRCA mutations. The lower court held that these claims all fail the patentable subject matter eligibility test of 35 U.S.C. §101. A typical invalidated claim includes Claim 1 of Patent No. 5,747,282 which reads “1. An isolated DNA coding for a BRCA1 polypeptide, said polypeptide having the amino acid sequence set forth in SEQ ID NO:2.” (The amino acid sequence No. 2 was provided as a part of the patent filing).

    • Protocol on ABS Could Further Impoverish Indigenous Peoples, Groups Claim

      Indigenous Peoples previously protested the position of Canada opposing the language in the 21 October preambular text “noting the significance of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples” (IPW, Biodiversity/Genetic Resources/Biotech, 21 October 2010). The CBD secretariat is housed in Quebec, Canada.

      “The protocol must meet standards consistent with the internationally accepted rights of Indigenous Peoples,” said Harry. “If it does not, the ABS protocol will facilitate the misappropriation of genetic resources from indigenous lands and territories, and alienate the traditional knowledge implicated in benefit sharing schemes,” she said, adding that this would lead to a further impoverishment of the “world’s most vulnerable peoples.”

      Today, a group of Canadian indigenous peoples published a press release about Canada’s alleged undermining of the biodiversity negotiations. They said that in an interview with the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network, John Duncan, Canadian minister of Indian affairs and northern development, “claimed the ABS issue was a diversion. “What is being discussed in Japan is about intellectual property, so to think that has anything really significant to do with the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples is inappropriate,” he was reported saying.

    • Copyrights

      • French three strikes agency getting 25,000 complaints a day

        Nobody knows how many file sharers are getting warnings from France’s new P2P infringement authority, but Billboard.biz says that French labels are sending 25,000 complaints a day to Hadopi, the agency enforcing that country’s “three strikes” law.

      • Hard Choice? Chinese Internet Café Owners/Transport Operators Can Choose Between Paying For Chinese Movies Or Using Free Pirated Foreign Movies

        IP Dragon is concerned that the owners of internet cafés and the operators of planes, trains, ships and buses are not charged for showing foreign films. This is not only discriminatory to foreign film makers, and in violation of international treaties, but it will hurt the fledgling Chinese film industry. There is not really fair competition if you have to pay or Chinese films and foreign pirated films you can use for free. The National Copyright Administration of China has already announced that this will not change in the near future. Maybe Hollywood, Bollywood and the European filmindustry can change their opinion.

      • The Coming Showdown over Free Music

        Many people, including myself, have said it’s inevitable: digital music is going to be given away legally for free, while musicians and songwriters try to make livings in other ways. But just how inevitable is it?

      • Copenhagen Salon

        With this salon, CC Denmark would like to invite the public in to discuss the benefits of using open licensing models in business. Presenting each of their work, renowned speakers from three international projects will elaborate on using CC licenses and sharing ideologies in their respective fields.

      • Local News Website Says You Need To Pay To Read Its Stories, Says It’s Collecting Visitor IPs To Sue

        Well, here’s a fun one. Apparently, there’s a local news site known as The North Country Gazette (don’t click that just yet…) covering parts of upstate New York via a blog format. Rather than putting in place an actual technical paywall, the site has apparently decided to go with a paywall-by-threat model.

      • Interview With The Guy Who Embraced The ‘Pirates’ Of 4chan

        ERIKA: Like I said earlier, it’s made me re-think how you interact with the trolling, toxic readers that everyone inevitably picks up when their work starts to attract an audience.

      • LimeWire Shuts Down After Losing Court Battle With The RIAA

        The Gnutella-based download client LimeWire has ceased all its operations after a U.S. federal judge granted a request from the RIAA. Limewire was ordered to disable all functionalities in the current application to prevent users from sharing copyrighted material. The verdict is expected to have an unprecedented impact on the P2P file-sharing landscape.

      • ACTA

        • ACTA: GI-card seen

          När det gäller det redan så hårt kritiserade ACTA-avtalet , så är kristdemokraterna (EPP) och de konservativa (ECR) i Europaparlamentet mycket angelägna om att det även skall omfatta så kallade geografiska indikatorer (GI). In the case of the already much-criticized ACTA treaty , so is the Christian Democrats (EPP) and the Conservatives (ECR) in the European Parliament is very keen that it should also include so-called geographic indicators (GI).

          Det innebär i korthet att de vill att geografiska produktmärken (Champagne, Parmaskinka mm) skall få samma skydd som vanliga varumärken mot förfalskning. That basically means that they want to geographic marks (Champagne, Parma ham, etc.) shall receive the same protection as regular brands against counterfeiting.

Clip of the Day

EFF Celebrates 20th Anniversary With New Animation by Nina Paley


Credit: TinyOgg

10.26.10

Links 26/10/2010: Facts From London Stock Exchange, webOS 2.0 Reviewed

Posted in News Roundup at 9:24 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

Leftovers

  • Mark Cuban Wants to Pay Government Attorneys to Get Off Their Ass

    Frustrated by the snail’s pace of the SEC investigation into insider trading allegations, Cuban offered to pay government attorneys to work faster.

  • Manila: A megacity where the living must share with the dead

    Land is precious in Manila, and people are prepared to endure incredible circumstances to claim their own piece. Baking’s family is one of hundreds that have set up home in the cemetery, jostling for space with the dead. “It’s much better living here than in a shanty town,” he assures me as we clamber over densely-packed powder pink and blue tombs on the way to his home. “It’s much more peaceful and quiet.”

  • Drug addict has vasectomy in return for £200 cash

    A drug addict has become the first man in Britain to take part in a controversial project that saw him get cash to be sterilised.

  • Report: Ancient ruins worldwide ‘on verge of vanishing’

    Twelve historic sites around the world are “on the verge of vanishing” because of mismanagement and neglect, according to a new report.

  • FarmVillains

    Steal someone else’s game. Change its name. Make millions. Repeat.

  • Judge Clears CAPTCHA-Breaking Case for Criminal Trial

    A federal judge in New Jersey has cleared the way for a landmark criminal case targeting CAPTCHA circumvention to proceed to trial.

  • UberCab Ordered to Cease And Desist

    Did Ubercab just crash and burn? Taxi and limo industry insiders in California today informed TechCrunch that the San Francisco Metro Transit Authority & the Public Utilities Commission of California have ordered the startup to cease and desist.

  • Health/Nutrition

    • Scientists suggest that cancer is purely man-made

      Cancer is a modern, man-made disease caused by environmental factors such as pollution and diet, a study by University of Manchester scientists has strongly suggested.

      The study of remains and literature from ancient Egypt and Greece and earlier periods – carried out at Manchester’s KNH Centre for Biomedical Egyptology and published in Nature Reviews Cancer – includes the first histological diagnosis of cancer in an Egyptian mummy.

  • Defence/Police/Aggression

    • Jesse Jackson: Britain’s moral authority is undermined by police discrimination

      The Rev Jesse Jackson has said that Britain’s moral authority is being damaged by the government’s failure to stop the police discriminating against ethnic minorities.

    • AND FINALLY

      With the impact of the soon-to-be-announced mega austerity cuts still to come, it could be that millions will soon find it hard to make ends meet.

      But help is it hand. There’ll be no shortage of people forced to turn to shoplifting or petty crime to survive – and now there’s a website that will pay you to sit at home and spy on everyone in the hope of catching them.

    • Inquiry after police filmed hitting anti-fascist protester

      An investigation is under way after a police officer was filmed hitting an anti-fascist demonstrator in the face during a far-right rally.

      Alan Clough, 63, from Radcliffe, Bury, was protesting against the English Defence League (EDL) rally in Bolton in March when he was struck, fell to the ground and was subsequently arrested.

    • Iraq war logs: military privatisation run amok

      Shortly after 10am on 14 May 2005, a convoy of private security guards from Blackwater riding down “Route Irish” – the Baghdad airport road – shot up a civilian Iraqi vehicle. While they were at it, the Blackwater men fired shots over the heads of a group of soldiers from the 69th Regiment of the US Army before they sped away heading west in their white armoured truck. When the dust cleared, the Iraqi driver was dead and his wife and daughter were injured.

    • They’re Trying To Sell the Brooklyn Bridge Again

      So it was last month when a friendly couple dumped their paper on the train seat opposite me. And bingo, it was as bad as ever. “Defense Officials Predict Slow Afghan Progress.” And the sourcing for this hardly unexpected headline? “Senior US military officials”, “military officials”, “a senior US military official”, “Obama administration officials”, “defence officials”, “the senior military official”, “military leaders”, “the official”, “military officials”, “the officials”, “many in the military”, “military officials” (again), “officials” (again), “military officials” (yet again) and “officials” (yet again).

      Why do our scribes write this horseshit? My old mate Alexander Cockburn calls it “selling the Brooklyn Bridge” and claims that Michael Gordon, chief military correspondent of The New York Times, is always ready to buy it.

    • David Kelly files prove little for campaigners whose fight continues

      Kelly’s death has never been the subject of a proper inquest, Powers argues. The original inquest was replaced by the Hutton inquiry – a highly unusual and, to many observers, unjustified break with standard legal procedure for single deaths. Last month, lawyers acting for Kelly campaigners delivered an application for a fresh inquest to attorney general Dominic Grieve. Grieve is considering it, a process which may take several more months.

    • Norwich Council uses ‘spying’ powers to catch smoke pub

      Norwich City Council used controversial spying powers to investigate and fine a pub for flouting the smoking ban.

    • Allotments and privacy

      With allotments in mind, news has reached Big Brother Watch of the ludicrous situation of a Lincolnshire council demanding to know the sexual orientation, race and religion of those applying for one of the eighteen vacant plots in the City of Lincoln.

    • Police chief wants Birmingham ‘spy’ cameras removed
    • Sacrificing our liberties won’t win the war against terror

      The good news, according to Professor Audrey Cronin at the US National War College, is that terrorist campaigns always end. The only questions are when and how. The answers hinge on government policy. After the 2005 London bombings, Tony Blair proclaimed: “Let no one be in any doubt, the rules of the game are changing.” Ministers proposed waves of authoritarian measures, including incursions on free speech, control orders, ID cards and extensions to detention without charge that one former chief constable labelled a “propaganda coup for Al-Qaeda”. If Al-Qaeda was looking for a repressive reaction, they got it. But, was it effective?

    • EXCLUSIVE: WikiLeaks Prepares Largest Intel Leak in US History with Release of 400,000 Iraq War Docs

      AMY GOODMAN: So they’re doing it again on this 400,000-document leak?

      DANIEL ELLSBERG: They’re doing it again, and it’s much to their credit, and I appreciate it. I’ve waited forty years for a release on this scale. I think there should have been something on the scale of the Pentagon Papers every year. How often do we need this kind of thing? We haven’t seen it. So I’m very glad that someone is taking the risk and the initiative to inform us better now.

    • Government web snooping back on the cards

      Government plans to intercept Internet communications and store details of “traffic data” are reportedly back on the cards.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

  • Finance

    • French protests jeopardise airport fuel supplies

      France’s main airport has only a few days’ worth of jet fuel left, it was announced today, as the strikes against government pension plans continued to disrupt infrastructure.

    • Sarkozy should retire, says France

      More importantly, the French have decided to take to the streets in the millions – including large-scale strikes and work stoppages – to defend hard-won retirement gains. (It must be emphasised, since the media sometimes forgets to make the distinction, that only a tiny percentage of France’s demonstrators have engaged in any kind of property damage and even fewer in violence, with all but these few protesting peacefully.) French populist rage is being directed in a positive direction – unlike in the United States where it is most prominently being mobilised to elect political candidates who will do their best to increase the suffering of working- and middle-class citizens.

    • Greece promises to crack down on tax evaders

      Saying Greeks had already made “unprecedented sacrifices”, the prime minister, George Papandreou, insisted today there would be no more hard-hitting austerity measures, despite the country bracing itself for an expected upward revision of a budget deficit that at 13.6% has already hit record highs.

      “Whatever happens, there will be no additional burden placed on wage earners and pensioners. There will be no additional increase in tax rates beyond the ones we have already committed to making,” Papandreou said.

    • Fannie and Freddie’s Foreclosure Barons

      [Editor’s note: In November 2009, MoJo reporter Andy Kroll received a tip about a little-known yet powerful firm, the Law Offices of David J. Stern, which handled staggering numbers of foreclosures in southeastern Florida—the throbbing heart of nation’s housing crisis. Among the allegations, the tipster had it from insiders that Stern employees were routinely falsifying legal paperwork in an effort to push borrowers out of their homes as quickly—and profitably—as possible.

      Kroll spent eight months investigating Stern’s firm and its ilk—a breed of deep-pocketed and controversial operations dubbed “foreclosure mills.” After sifting through thousands of pages of court documents, interviewing scores of legal experts and former Stern employees, and attending dozens of foreclosure hearings in drab Florida courtrooms, he emerged with a portrait of a law firm—indeed, an entire industry—that was willing to cut corners, deceive judges, and even (allegedly) commit fraud—all at the expense of America’s homeowners.

    • ForeclosureGate
    • Wall Street Sold `Tragically Deficient’ Product, Angelides Says

      Wall Street firms such as Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Citigroup Inc. created products that were “tragically deficient,” in the view of the chairman of the panel charged by Congress with identifying the causes of the financial crisis.

    • Timothy Geithner forecloses on the moratorium debate

      Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner is good at telling fairy tales. Geithner first became known to the general public in September of 2008. Back then, he was head of the New York Federal Reserve Board. He was part of the triumvirate, along with Federal Reserve Board chairman Ben Bernanke and then Treasury secretary Henry Paulson, who told congress that it had to pass the Tarp or the economy would collapse.

    • Unemployment Benefits: The 99ers

      Even after an extension of unemployment benefits to 99 weeks, many of those about to go off the program are in a quandary. Scott Pelley talks to some of them in Silicon Valley.

    • California Data Autumnal: Dialing Back a Decade

      From the highs of 2007, total California employment is down about 6.5%. And, 2008 total oil product consumption compared to 2007 is down about 5.5%. There is no question that 2009 energy data from EIA Washington will show another notable fall, in California energy use. Meanwhile, as we can see from the labor market data, there is no economic recovery occurring in America’s largest state.

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • Tell the DOJ: Investigate the Chamber of Commerce’s campaign spending

      This year alone the Chamber has pledged to spend $75 million on ads attacking candidates who don’t meekly bow down to the biggest and wealthiest corporate interests.

    • It’s Not Your Local Chamber of Commerce

      Many Americans think of the Chamber of Commerce as a local organization that supplies maps or information about local businesses, or thing of it as a sort of civics league, like the Elks Lodge. But the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in Washington, D.C. is completely different. It often has no ties to local Chambers of Commerce. It spends more money on lobbying than any other entity in Washington, D.C., outspending even the political parties on elections nationwide. The Chamber has a $200 million budget, and as a 501(c)(6) trade association, it doesn’t have to pay any taxes or disclose its donors.

    • The Loaded Chamber: Secret Money
    • How Radical Christian Conservatives May Succeed in Destroying Democracy

      The ancient Greek playwright Aristophanes spent his life battling the assault on democracy by tyrants. It is disheartening to be reminded that he lost. But he understood that the hardest struggle for humankind is often stating and understanding the obvious. Aristophanes, who had the temerity to portray the ruling Greek tyrant, Cleon, as a dog, is the perfect playwright to turn to in trying to grasp the danger posed to us by movements from the tea party to militias to the Christian right, as well as the bankrupt and corrupt power elite that no longer concerns itself with the needs of its citizens. He saw the same corruption 2,400 years ago. He feared correctly that it would extinguish Athenian democracy. And he struggled in vain to rouse Athenians from their slumber.

    • The Kochs, Glenn Beck and Titans of Industry Met to Plot 2010 Elections

      ThinkProgress has discovered that the oil billionaire brothers, David H. and Charles G. Koch, who played a key role in creating and funding the Tea Party movement, hold a quiet annual, invitation-only gathering where they coordinate their political agenda with other titans of industry — including the big health insurers, oil executives, Wall Street investors, real estate tycoons, conservative journalists and TV opinion show stars like Glenn Beck.

    • MEMO: Health Insurance, Banking, Oil Industries Met With Koch, Chamber, Glenn Beck To Plot 2010 Election

      In 2006, Koch Industries owner Charles Koch revealed to the Wall Street Journal’s Stephen Moore that he coordinates the funding of the conservative infrastructure of front groups, political campaigns, think tanks, media outlets and other anti-government efforts through a twice annual meeting of wealthy right-wing donors. He also confided to Moore, who is funded through several of Koch’s ventures, that his true goal is to strengthen the “culture of prosperity” by eliminating “90%” of all laws and government regulations. Although it is difficult to quantify the exact amount Koch alone has funneled to right-wing fronts, some studies have pointed toward $50 million he has given alone to anti-environmental groups.

  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

    • Google boss: ‘Creeped out by Street View? Just move’

      Google CEO Eric Schmidt has said that if you don’t like Google Street View cars photographing your house, you can “just move.”

      “Street View. We drive exactly once,” Schmidt said during an appearance on CNN’s “Parker Spitzer” late last week. “So, you can just move, right?”

      Schmidt’s words were broadcast across the net on Friday, but they’ve been edited from the video now available on the CNN website. Before it was edited out, the moment was reported by The Wall Street Journal.

    • Why I’m suing the Department of Homeland Security

      Today the First Amendment Project is filing a lawsuit on my behalf against U.S. Customs and Border Protection (one of the divisions of the Department of Homeland Security) for violating the Privacy Act and the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA) by refusing to disclose their records of my travels, what they did with my requests for my records, and how they index, search for, and retrieve these travel surveillance records.

    • Berlusconi ‘vendetta’ takes Italy’s Paxman off air again

      His fans see him as Italy’s Jeremy Paxman, an aggressive but penetrating TV anchorman. Prime minister Silvio Berlusconi, who owns most of the country’s private channels and wields indirect control over the state network, RAI, sees him as a dangerous leftie. Meet Michele Santoro, the temporarily banned hero of Italian current affairs broadcasting.

    • Egyptian government fears a Facebook revolution

      Many Egyptians, in what is still a police state, regard Facebook as a safe haven where they can campaign and express their opinions freely. But that could soon change following a crackdown by the authorities against various types of media.

      In Egypt, many opposition movements have either started or grown significantly on Facebook, most notably the April 6 youth movement and the national campaign to support Nobel peace prize winner Mohamed ElBaradei as a presidential candidate.

    • Chinese police refuse to register human rights lawyer as missing

      Chinese police have refused to register an outspoken human rights lawyer who has not been seen since April as a missing person, his elder brother said today.

      The disappearance of Gao Zhisheng has caused international concern, particularly because he had previously made detailed claims of torture at the hands of security officials during detentions.

    • Tibetan student protests spread to Beijing
    • The west must stand up to China

      Pity the Chinese. The inhabitants of the world’s next superpower cannot search the internet or assemble or travel or speak or read or write or even reproduce without restriction. Yet in the lands where freedom is abundant, China, rather than earning well-deserved rebukes, continues to be championed as the ineluctable future. This disgraceful journey began with a liberal assumption: the west, it was claimed, is more likely to influence China by partnering with it, by giving it a prominent position inside, rather than pushing it outside, global institutions.

    • Silence of the dissenters: How south-east Asia keeps web users in line

      Vietnam, Burma, Thailand, Cambodia and the Philippines have all moved or are moving towards monitoring internet use, blocking international sites regarded as critical and ruthlessly silencing web dissidents.

    • Gaza’s Surfer Girls
    • NYCLU Settlement Ends Restriction on Photography Outside Federal Courthouses
    • Plan to store Britons’ phone and internet data revived
  • Internet/Net Neutrality/DRM

    • What Do Kids Say About The Internet? + Competition For Best Online Children’s Content

      And, by the way, we can get a good insight into where the internet might head by understanding what these kids use. School work or watching videos (84% and 83% respectively). Playing games (74%) and communicating via instant messaging (61%) are the next most popular activities online. One out of three youngsters now connect via their mobile phones or other portable devices.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Vatican to rich countries: stop “excessive zeal” for IP rights

      On September 21, the Vatican observer at the UN, Mons. Silvano Maria Tomasi, addressed the 48th general assembly of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) in Geneva (English translation). He let the group know that the Vatican supports intellectual property rights (IPR) because such protection “recognizes the dignity of man and his work” and because it contributes to “the growth of the individual personality and to the common good.”

      But Tomasi then went on to make a point we’ve harped on repeatedly here at Ars: supporting IP rights in general does not always mean supporting tougher patent and copyright rules; “better” does not always mean “stronger.”

    • Steven Johnson: ‘Eureka moments are very, very rare’

      What all this means, in practical terms, is that the best way to encourage (or to have) new ideas isn’t to fetishise the “spark of genius”, to retreat to a mountain cabin in order to “be creative”, or to blabber interminably about “blue-sky”, “out-of-the-box” thinking. Rather, it’s to expand the range of your possible next moves – the perimeter of your potential – by exposing yourself to as much serendipity, as much argument and conversation, as many rival and related ideas as possible; to borrow, to repurpose, to recombine. This is one way of explaining the creativity generated by cities, by Europe’s 17th-century coffee-houses, and by the internet. Good ideas happen in networks; in one rather brain-bending sense, you could even say that “good ideas are networks”. Or as Johnson also puts it: “Chance favours the connected mind.”

    • Copyrights

      • We should copyright the Canadian way

        The new copyright bill, C-32, places consumers and users at risk of infringement for a wide variety of things, such as circumventing digital locks to transfer a CD track to an MP3 Player, or to transfer e-book content from an old device to a new one. Alongside C-32, Canada has been involved in talks to establish an Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA). Both C-32 and ACTA represent a departure from Canadian copyright…

      • From “Radical Extremism” to “Balanced Copyright” : Canadian Copyright and the Digital Agenda
      • Six more website operators facing Righthaven copyright lawsuits

        Hotel management students in Canada are receiving a lesson in U.S. copyright law courtesy of Las Vegas copyright enforcement company Righthaven LLC.

      • US Library of Congress: Copyright Is Destroying Historic Audio
      • Critique of CBC’s new Anti-Creative Commons Policy

        The logical and ethical next step is to alter this policy, and as such I call for the CBC to do such; allowing for appropriately licensed Creative Commons music to exist alongside commercially licensed music, effectively giving back the rights of Artists and Show Producers to share content, and giving alternatives to Canadian Artists to decide for themselves how their content is to be used. A key issue here is artists’ right to give permission under copyright law for use of their works. They have various reasons for doing this, and why should CBC punish them? By blocking this, the CBC has effectively eliminated this potential on the larger scale. This is not the Canadian way of doing things – we share and we like sharing. Allowing policies like this to exist in our Public Services is a step backwards and creates justifications and rationalizations for similar policies in the future. As a Canadian, this upsets me – seeing my countries’ artists with alternative views set onto a back burner because they have been unfairly grouped in with others. This is not right at all.

      • MPAA Calls Censorship Of Websites ‘Forward Looking’

        Ah, the word choices of the MPAA. The organization that once claimed the VCR was the “Boston Strangler” of the movie industry is now out there trying to get three strikes and censorship laws passed to protect their business model, and referring to these backwards looking protectionist policies as “forward looking.” That’s what MPAA boss Bob Pisano called the idea, found in the COICA proposal to censor web sites the MPAA doesn’t like. Of course, if this had been in effect when the VCR first came out, there would be no VCR.

      • Is Mark Twain’s ‘New’ Autobiography Covered By Copyright?

        PometheeFeu pointed us to the news that Mark Twain’s autobiography, to be officially published for the first time 100 years after his death is already looking like it’s going to be a best seller. The book comes out on November 15th, but it’s already near the top of the bestseller lists on both Amazon and Barnes & Noble thanks to pre-orders. If you weren’t aware, Twain (real name Samuel Clemens), wrote this autobiography towards the end of his life, but demanded that it not be published until 100 years after his death (some of it, he demanded be withheld for 500 years). Allegedly, he did this so that he could say what he wanted without worrying about the people he spoke ill of ever finding out. Also, it’s not your typical autobiography. Apparently, it was more or less stream of consciousness, concerning whatever he felt like talking about. He would get up in the morning, talk about whatever he felt like, and people working for him would take it all down in dictation.

      • Sarkozy Wants To Use Anti-Censorship Conference To Promote Censorship By Copyright

        We’ve pointed out many times how copyright is, by its nature, a law for censorship. Now, you can argue that it’s necessary or useful censorship (though, I doubt I would agree), but it cannot be denied that the basic purpose of copyright law is to stifle a form of speech. That’s why I’m always amazed at the disconnect of politicians, who support anti-censorship efforts online at the same time that they promote plans to censor-via-copyright law. Of course, most haven’t actually thought about it, or they insist that copyright is not censorship at all, and they can’t fathom how the two are connected.

      • Irdial and the Underground

        The Underground story in brief is this: their comic was pirated and bootlegged on 4Chan. They didn’t sue or whine: the authors went online at 4Chan to discuss their comic. What happened? More good publicity than you can imagine – go look at their website for what happened to their sales.

      • ACTA

        • FFII: ACTA goes beyond present EU laws

          The Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) is not in line with present EU laws, according to a Foundation for a Free Information Infrastructure (FFII) analysis. Previously, the European Commission has often stated that ACTA would remain fully in line with existing EU legislation.

          Health groups have pointed out that ACTA will hamper access to essential medicine in developing countries. FFII’s analysis focusses on the impact ACTA will have on European SMEs in the ICT field, and on diffusion of green technology, needed to fight climate change. The FFII concludes that patents have to be excluded from ACTA’s civil enforcement section.

Clip of the Day

The Digital Prism Screencast – MintBackup


Credit: TinyOgg

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

Leftovers

  • Mark Cuban Wants to Pay Government Attorneys to Get Off Their Ass

    Frustrated by the snail’s pace of the SEC investigation into insider trading allegations, Cuban offered to pay government attorneys to work faster.

  • Manila: A megacity where the living must share with the dead

    Land is precious in Manila, and people are prepared to endure incredible circumstances to claim their own piece. Baking’s family is one of hundreds that have set up home in the cemetery, jostling for space with the dead. “It’s much better living here than in a shanty town,” he assures me as we clamber over densely-packed powder pink and blue tombs on the way to his home. “It’s much more peaceful and quiet.”

  • Drug addict has vasectomy in return for £200 cash

    A drug addict has become the first man in Britain to take part in a controversial project that saw him get cash to be sterilised.

  • Report: Ancient ruins worldwide ‘on verge of vanishing’

    Twelve historic sites around the world are “on the verge of vanishing” because of mismanagement and neglect, according to a new report.

  • FarmVillains

    Steal someone else’s game. Change its name. Make millions. Repeat.

  • Judge Clears CAPTCHA-Breaking Case for Criminal Trial

    A federal judge in New Jersey has cleared the way for a landmark criminal case targeting CAPTCHA circumvention to proceed to trial.

  • UberCab Ordered to Cease And Desist

    Did Ubercab just crash and burn? Taxi and limo industry insiders in California today informed TechCrunch that the San Francisco Metro Transit Authority & the Public Utilities Commission of California have ordered the startup to cease and desist.

  • Health/Nutrition

    • Scientists suggest that cancer is purely man-made

      Cancer is a modern, man-made disease caused by environmental factors such as pollution and diet, a study by University of Manchester scientists has strongly suggested.

      The study of remains and literature from ancient Egypt and Greece and earlier periods – carried out at Manchester’s KNH Centre for Biomedical Egyptology and published in Nature Reviews Cancer – includes the first histological diagnosis of cancer in an Egyptian mummy.

  • Defence/Police/Aggression

    • Jesse Jackson: Britain’s moral authority is undermined by police discrimination

      The Rev Jesse Jackson has said that Britain’s moral authority is being damaged by the government’s failure to stop the police discriminating against ethnic minorities.

    • AND FINALLY

      With the impact of the soon-to-be-announced mega austerity cuts still to come, it could be that millions will soon find it hard to make ends meet.

      But help is it hand. There’ll be no shortage of people forced to turn to shoplifting or petty crime to survive – and now there’s a website that will pay you to sit at home and spy on everyone in the hope of catching them.

    • Inquiry after police filmed hitting anti-fascist protester

      An investigation is under way after a police officer was filmed hitting an anti-fascist demonstrator in the face during a far-right rally.

      Alan Clough, 63, from Radcliffe, Bury, was protesting against the English Defence League (EDL) rally in Bolton in March when he was struck, fell to the ground and was subsequently arrested.

    • Iraq war logs: military privatisation run amok

      Shortly after 10am on 14 May 2005, a convoy of private security guards from Blackwater riding down “Route Irish” – the Baghdad airport road – shot up a civilian Iraqi vehicle. While they were at it, the Blackwater men fired shots over the heads of a group of soldiers from the 69th Regiment of the US Army before they sped away heading west in their white armoured truck. When the dust cleared, the Iraqi driver was dead and his wife and daughter were injured.

    • They’re Trying To Sell the Brooklyn Bridge Again

      So it was last month when a friendly couple dumped their paper on the train seat opposite me. And bingo, it was as bad as ever. “Defense Officials Predict Slow Afghan Progress.” And the sourcing for this hardly unexpected headline? “Senior US military officials”, “military officials”, “a senior US military official”, “Obama administration officials”, “defence officials”, “the senior military official”, “military leaders”, “the official”, “military officials”, “the officials”, “many in the military”, “military officials” (again), “officials” (again), “military officials” (yet again) and “officials” (yet again).

      Why do our scribes write this horseshit? My old mate Alexander Cockburn calls it “selling the Brooklyn Bridge” and claims that Michael Gordon, chief military correspondent of The New York Times, is always ready to buy it.

    • David Kelly files prove little for campaigners whose fight continues

      Kelly’s death has never been the subject of a proper inquest, Powers argues. The original inquest was replaced by the Hutton inquiry – a highly unusual and, to many observers, unjustified break with standard legal procedure for single deaths. Last month, lawyers acting for Kelly campaigners delivered an application for a fresh inquest to attorney general Dominic Grieve. Grieve is considering it, a process which may take several more months.

    • Norwich Council uses ‘spying’ powers to catch smoke pub

      Norwich City Council used controversial spying powers to investigate and fine a pub for flouting the smoking ban.

    • Allotments and privacy

      With allotments in mind, news has reached Big Brother Watch of the ludicrous situation of a Lincolnshire council demanding to know the sexual orientation, race and religion of those applying for one of the eighteen vacant plots in the City of Lincoln.

    • Police chief wants Birmingham ‘spy’ cameras removed
    • Sacrificing our liberties won’t win the war against terror

      The good news, according to Professor Audrey Cronin at the US National War College, is that terrorist campaigns always end. The only questions are when and how. The answers hinge on government policy. After the 2005 London bombings, Tony Blair proclaimed: “Let no one be in any doubt, the rules of the game are changing.” Ministers proposed waves of authoritarian measures, including incursions on free speech, control orders, ID cards and extensions to detention without charge that one former chief constable labelled a “propaganda coup for Al-Qaeda”. If Al-Qaeda was looking for a repressive reaction, they got it. But, was it effective?

    • EXCLUSIVE: WikiLeaks Prepares Largest Intel Leak in US History with Release of 400,000 Iraq War Docs

      AMY GOODMAN: So they’re doing it again on this 400,000-document leak?

      DANIEL ELLSBERG: They’re doing it again, and it’s much to their credit, and I appreciate it. I’ve waited forty years for a release on this scale. I think there should have been something on the scale of the Pentagon Papers every year. How often do we need this kind of thing? We haven’t seen it. So I’m very glad that someone is taking the risk and the initiative to inform us better now.

    • Government web snooping back on the cards

      Government plans to intercept Internet communications and store details of “traffic data” are reportedly back on the cards.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

  • Finance

    • French protests jeopardise airport fuel supplies

      France’s main airport has only a few days’ worth of jet fuel left, it was announced today, as the strikes against government pension plans continued to disrupt infrastructure.

    • Sarkozy should retire, says France

      More importantly, the French have decided to take to the streets in the millions – including large-scale strikes and work stoppages – to defend hard-won retirement gains. (It must be emphasised, since the media sometimes forgets to make the distinction, that only a tiny percentage of France’s demonstrators have engaged in any kind of property damage and even fewer in violence, with all but these few protesting peacefully.) French populist rage is being directed in a positive direction – unlike in the United States where it is most prominently being mobilised to elect political candidates who will do their best to increase the suffering of working- and middle-class citizens.

    • Greece promises to crack down on tax evaders

      Saying Greeks had already made “unprecedented sacrifices”, the prime minister, George Papandreou, insisted today there would be no more hard-hitting austerity measures, despite the country bracing itself for an expected upward revision of a budget deficit that at 13.6% has already hit record highs.

      “Whatever happens, there will be no additional burden placed on wage earners and pensioners. There will be no additional increase in tax rates beyond the ones we have already committed to making,” Papandreou said.

    • Fannie and Freddie’s Foreclosure Barons

      [Editor’s note: In November 2009, MoJo reporter Andy Kroll received a tip about a little-known yet powerful firm, the Law Offices of David J. Stern, which handled staggering numbers of foreclosures in southeastern Florida—the throbbing heart of nation’s housing crisis. Among the allegations, the tipster had it from insiders that Stern employees were routinely falsifying legal paperwork in an effort to push borrowers out of their homes as quickly—and profitably—as possible.

      Kroll spent eight months investigating Stern’s firm and its ilk—a breed of deep-pocketed and controversial operations dubbed “foreclosure mills.” After sifting through thousands of pages of court documents, interviewing scores of legal experts and former Stern employees, and attending dozens of foreclosure hearings in drab Florida courtrooms, he emerged with a portrait of a law firm—indeed, an entire industry—that was willing to cut corners, deceive judges, and even (allegedly) commit fraud—all at the expense of America’s homeowners.

    • ForeclosureGate
    • Wall Street Sold `Tragically Deficient’ Product, Angelides Says

      Wall Street firms such as Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Citigroup Inc. created products that were “tragically deficient,” in the view of the chairman of the panel charged by Congress with identifying the causes of the financial crisis.

    • Timothy Geithner forecloses on the moratorium debate

      Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner is good at telling fairy tales. Geithner first became known to the general public in September of 2008. Back then, he was head of the New York Federal Reserve Board. He was part of the triumvirate, along with Federal Reserve Board chairman Ben Bernanke and then Treasury secretary Henry Paulson, who told congress that it had to pass the Tarp or the economy would collapse.

    • Unemployment Benefits: The 99ers

      Even after an extension of unemployment benefits to 99 weeks, many of those about to go off the program are in a quandary. Scott Pelley talks to some of them in Silicon Valley.

    • California Data Autumnal: Dialing Back a Decade

      From the highs of 2007, total California employment is down about 6.5%. And, 2008 total oil product consumption compared to 2007 is down about 5.5%. There is no question that 2009 energy data from EIA Washington will show another notable fall, in California energy use. Meanwhile, as we can see from the labor market data, there is no economic recovery occurring in America’s largest state.

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • Tell the DOJ: Investigate the Chamber of Commerce’s campaign spending

      This year alone the Chamber has pledged to spend $75 million on ads attacking candidates who don’t meekly bow down to the biggest and wealthiest corporate interests.

    • It’s Not Your Local Chamber of Commerce

      Many Americans think of the Chamber of Commerce as a local organization that supplies maps or information about local businesses, or thing of it as a sort of civics league, like the Elks Lodge. But the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in Washington, D.C. is completely different. It often has no ties to local Chambers of Commerce. It spends more money on lobbying than any other entity in Washington, D.C., outspending even the political parties on elections nationwide. The Chamber has a $200 million budget, and as a 501(c)(6) trade association, it doesn’t have to pay any taxes or disclose its donors.

    • The Loaded Chamber: Secret Money
    • How Radical Christian Conservatives May Succeed in Destroying Democracy

      The ancient Greek playwright Aristophanes spent his life battling the assault on democracy by tyrants. It is disheartening to be reminded that he lost. But he understood that the hardest struggle for humankind is often stating and understanding the obvious. Aristophanes, who had the temerity to portray the ruling Greek tyrant, Cleon, as a dog, is the perfect playwright to turn to in trying to grasp the danger posed to us by movements from the tea party to militias to the Christian right, as well as the bankrupt and corrupt power elite that no longer concerns itself with the needs of its citizens. He saw the same corruption 2,400 years ago. He feared correctly that it would extinguish Athenian democracy. And he struggled in vain to rouse Athenians from their slumber.

    • The Kochs, Glenn Beck and Titans of Industry Met to Plot 2010 Elections

      ThinkProgress has discovered that the oil billionaire brothers, David H. and Charles G. Koch, who played a key role in creating and funding the Tea Party movement, hold a quiet annual, invitation-only gathering where they coordinate their political agenda with other titans of industry — including the big health insurers, oil executives, Wall Street investors, real estate tycoons, conservative journalists and TV opinion show stars like Glenn Beck.

    • MEMO: Health Insurance, Banking, Oil Industries Met With Koch, Chamber, Glenn Beck To Plot 2010 Election

      In 2006, Koch Industries owner Charles Koch revealed to the Wall Street Journal’s Stephen Moore that he coordinates the funding of the conservative infrastructure of front groups, political campaigns, think tanks, media outlets and other anti-government efforts through a twice annual meeting of wealthy right-wing donors. He also confided to Moore, who is funded through several of Koch’s ventures, that his true goal is to strengthen the “culture of prosperity” by eliminating “90%” of all laws and government regulations. Although it is difficult to quantify the exact amount Koch alone has funneled to right-wing fronts, some studies have pointed toward $50 million he has given alone to anti-environmental groups.

  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

    • Google boss: ‘Creeped out by Street View? Just move’

      Google CEO Eric Schmidt has said that if you don’t like Google Street View cars photographing your house, you can “just move.”

      “Street View. We drive exactly once,” Schmidt said during an appearance on CNN’s “Parker Spitzer” late last week. “So, you can just move, right?”

      Schmidt’s words were broadcast across the net on Friday, but they’ve been edited from the video now available on the CNN website. Before it was edited out, the moment was reported by The Wall Street Journal.

    • Why I’m suing the Department of Homeland Security

      Today the First Amendment Project is filing a lawsuit on my behalf against U.S. Customs and Border Protection (one of the divisions of the Department of Homeland Security) for violating the Privacy Act and the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA) by refusing to disclose their records of my travels, what they did with my requests for my records, and how they index, search for, and retrieve these travel surveillance records.

    • Berlusconi ‘vendetta’ takes Italy’s Paxman off air again

      His fans see him as Italy’s Jeremy Paxman, an aggressive but penetrating TV anchorman. Prime minister Silvio Berlusconi, who owns most of the country’s private channels and wields indirect control over the state network, RAI, sees him as a dangerous leftie. Meet Michele Santoro, the temporarily banned hero of Italian current affairs broadcasting.

    • Egyptian government fears a Facebook revolution

      Many Egyptians, in what is still a police state, regard Facebook as a safe haven where they can campaign and express their opinions freely. But that could soon change following a crackdown by the authorities against various types of media.

      In Egypt, many opposition movements have either started or grown significantly on Facebook, most notably the April 6 youth movement and the national campaign to support Nobel peace prize winner Mohamed ElBaradei as a presidential candidate.

    • Chinese police refuse to register human rights lawyer as missing

      Chinese police have refused to register an outspoken human rights lawyer who has not been seen since April as a missing person, his elder brother said today.

      The disappearance of Gao Zhisheng has caused international concern, particularly because he had previously made detailed claims of torture at the hands of security officials during detentions.

    • Tibetan student protests spread to Beijing
    • The west must stand up to China

      Pity the Chinese. The inhabitants of the world’s next superpower cannot search the internet or assemble or travel or speak or read or write or even reproduce without restriction. Yet in the lands where freedom is abundant, China, rather than earning well-deserved rebukes, continues to be championed as the ineluctable future. This disgraceful journey began with a liberal assumption: the west, it was claimed, is more likely to influence China by partnering with it, by giving it a prominent position inside, rather than pushing it outside, global institutions.

    • Silence of the dissenters: How south-east Asia keeps web users in line

      Vietnam, Burma, Thailand, Cambodia and the Philippines have all moved or are moving towards monitoring internet use, blocking international sites regarded as critical and ruthlessly silencing web dissidents.

    • Gaza’s Surfer Girls
    • NYCLU Settlement Ends Restriction on Photography Outside Federal Courthouses
    • Plan to store Britons’ phone and internet data revived
  • Internet/Net Neutrality/DRM

    • What Do Kids Say About The Internet? + Competition For Best Online Children’s Content

      And, by the way, we can get a good insight into where the internet might head by understanding what these kids use. School work or watching videos (84% and 83% respectively). Playing games (74%) and communicating via instant messaging (61%) are the next most popular activities online. One out of three youngsters now connect via their mobile phones or other portable devices.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Vatican to rich countries: stop “excessive zeal” for IP rights

      On September 21, the Vatican observer at the UN, Mons. Silvano Maria Tomasi, addressed the 48th general assembly of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) in Geneva (English translation). He let the group know that the Vatican supports intellectual property rights (IPR) because such protection “recognizes the dignity of man and his work” and because it contributes to “the growth of the individual personality and to the common good.”

      But Tomasi then went on to make a point we’ve harped on repeatedly here at Ars: supporting IP rights in general does not always mean supporting tougher patent and copyright rules; “better” does not always mean “stronger.”

    • Steven Johnson: ‘Eureka moments are very, very rare’

      What all this means, in practical terms, is that the best way to encourage (or to have) new ideas isn’t to fetishise the “spark of genius”, to retreat to a mountain cabin in order to “be creative”, or to blabber interminably about “blue-sky”, “out-of-the-box” thinking. Rather, it’s to expand the range of your possible next moves – the perimeter of your potential – by exposing yourself to as much serendipity, as much argument and conversation, as many rival and related ideas as possible; to borrow, to repurpose, to recombine. This is one way of explaining the creativity generated by cities, by Europe’s 17th-century coffee-houses, and by the internet. Good ideas happen in networks; in one rather brain-bending sense, you could even say that “good ideas are networks”. Or as Johnson also puts it: “Chance favours the connected mind.”

    • Copyrights

      • We should copyright the Canadian way

        The new copyright bill, C-32, places consumers and users at risk of infringement for a wide variety of things, such as circumventing digital locks to transfer a CD track to an MP3 Player, or to transfer e-book content from an old device to a new one. Alongside C-32, Canada has been involved in talks to establish an Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA). Both C-32 and ACTA represent a departure from Canadian copyright…

      • From “Radical Extremism” to “Balanced Copyright” : Canadian Copyright and the Digital Agenda
      • Six more website operators facing Righthaven copyright lawsuits

        Hotel management students in Canada are receiving a lesson in U.S. copyright law courtesy of Las Vegas copyright enforcement company Righthaven LLC.

      • US Library of Congress: Copyright Is Destroying Historic Audio
      • Critique of CBC’s new Anti-Creative Commons Policy

        The logical and ethical next step is to alter this policy, and as such I call for the CBC to do such; allowing for appropriately licensed Creative Commons music to exist alongside commercially licensed music, effectively giving back the rights of Artists and Show Producers to share content, and giving alternatives to Canadian Artists to decide for themselves how their content is to be used. A key issue here is artists’ right to give permission under copyright law for use of their works. They have various reasons for doing this, and why should CBC punish them? By blocking this, the CBC has effectively eliminated this potential on the larger scale. This is not the Canadian way of doing things – we share and we like sharing. Allowing policies like this to exist in our Public Services is a step backwards and creates justifications and rationalizations for similar policies in the future. As a Canadian, this upsets me – seeing my countries’ artists with alternative views set onto a back burner because they have been unfairly grouped in with others. This is not right at all.

      • MPAA Calls Censorship Of Websites ‘Forward Looking’

        Ah, the word choices of the MPAA. The organization that once claimed the VCR was the “Boston Strangler” of the movie industry is now out there trying to get three strikes and censorship laws passed to protect their business model, and referring to these backwards looking protectionist policies as “forward looking.” That’s what MPAA boss Bob Pisano called the idea, found in the COICA proposal to censor web sites the MPAA doesn’t like. Of course, if this had been in effect when the VCR first came out, there would be no VCR.

      • Is Mark Twain’s ‘New’ Autobiography Covered By Copyright?

        PometheeFeu pointed us to the news that Mark Twain’s autobiography, to be officially published for the first time 100 years after his death is already looking like it’s going to be a best seller. The book comes out on November 15th, but it’s already near the top of the bestseller lists on both Amazon and Barnes & Noble thanks to pre-orders. If you weren’t aware, Twain (real name Samuel Clemens), wrote this autobiography towards the end of his life, but demanded that it not be published until 100 years after his death (some of it, he demanded be withheld for 500 years). Allegedly, he did this so that he could say what he wanted without worrying about the people he spoke ill of ever finding out. Also, it’s not your typical autobiography. Apparently, it was more or less stream of consciousness, concerning whatever he felt like talking about. He would get up in the morning, talk about whatever he felt like, and people working for him would take it all down in dictation.

      • Sarkozy Wants To Use Anti-Censorship Conference To Promote Censorship By Copyright

        We’ve pointed out many times how copyright is, by its nature, a law for censorship. Now, you can argue that it’s necessary or useful censorship (though, I doubt I would agree), but it cannot be denied that the basic purpose of copyright law is to stifle a form of speech. That’s why I’m always amazed at the disconnect of politicians, who support anti-censorship efforts online at the same time that they promote plans to censor-via-copyright law. Of course, most haven’t actually thought about it, or they insist that copyright is not censorship at all, and they can’t fathom how the two are connected.

      • Irdial and the Underground

        The Underground story in brief is this: their comic was pirated and bootlegged on 4Chan. They didn’t sue or whine: the authors went online at 4Chan to discuss their comic. What happened? More good publicity than you can imagine – go look at their website for what happened to their sales.

      • ACTA

        • FFII: ACTA goes beyond present EU laws

          The Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) is not in line with present EU laws, according to a Foundation for a Free Information Infrastructure (FFII) analysis. Previously, the European Commission has often stated that ACTA would remain fully in line with existing EU legislation.

          Health groups have pointed out that ACTA will hamper access to essential medicine in developing countries. FFII’s analysis focusses on the impact ACTA will have on European SMEs in the ICT field, and on diffusion of green technology, needed to fight climate change. The FFII concludes that patents have to be excluded from ACTA’s civil enforcement section.

Clip of the Day

The Digital Prism Screencast – MintBackup


Credit: TinyOgg

10.25.10

Links 25/10/2010: Mac OS X Lion Allegedly Copies GNU/Linux, Clang Builds Linux 2.6.36

Posted in News Roundup at 6:29 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Mac OS X Lion Features Are Ubuntu Rip-Off

    Let’s look at Mac OS X Lion’s first “innovation” they introduced: multitouch gestures. This is curious because while Mac trackpads and “magical” mice support multitouch, not much work had been done with multitouch at the OS level. With Lion, Apple’s introducing system-wide gestures that command both applications and the OS. But wait, where have we seen this before? That’s right, Ubuntu.

  • Kernel Space

    • Clang builds a working 2.6.36 Kernel

      Clang can now compile a functional Linux Kernel (version 2.6.36, SMP).

    • Graphics Stack

      • Intel, Radeon DRM Get Precise VBlank Timestamps

        Mario Kleiner has published patches over the weekend that introduce precise vblank time-stamping support within the Linux kernel’s DRM core and has implemented this support already within the Radeon and Intel kernel drivers too. The precise vblank timestamps and counting is needed by the DRI2 sync and swap extensions and in particular to conform with the OML_sync_control extension.

      • Holy Crap! You Can Use XvMC With ATI Gallium3D!

        It was just over the weekend that we reported XvMC and VDPAU may come to the ATI R600 Gallium3D driver that would allow those with Radeon HD 2000/3000/4000/5000 series graphics cards (what’s supported by R600g) to enjoy accelerated video playback using GPU shaders beyond just the limited X-Video extension. This work was being done by Christian König and today he has one hell of a surprise: it’s to the point that today you can try out the code and it should work for XvMC! Yes, that’s the case, I just read the email twice and am now scurrying to test out the appropriate ATI DDX and Gallium3D driver.

  • Desktop Environments

    • GNOME Desktop

      • There’s Little Love For Ubuntu’s Unity Desktop

        The announcement of Ubuntu dropping the GNOME shell in favor of their own Unity interface that came during Mark Shuttleworth’s keynote to kick off their Ubuntu 11.04 development summit has not been welcomed by many Linux users.

        Of the three pages of comments (and it continues to grow) within our forums, there isn’t anyone that’s actually happy to see Unity coming to the Ubuntu Desktop rather than the GNOME 3.0 Shell. Many users have already tried the current Unity desktop used by Ubuntu 10.10 Netbook Edition and there’s just lots of complaints.

      • Ubuntu moves away from GNOME
      • Ubuntu to move to Unity as default desktop for 11.04

        First things first: what Canonical is doing here is not new, by any means. Novell developed the slab on their own, based on their user testing and to their own design, before proposing it for inclusion in GNOME once it was released in Suse Linux Enterprise Desktop. Nokia have developed custom user interfaces on top of the standard Linux desktop shell for the past 5 years, built with GNOME technologies, and have actively participated in the development of core components through the GNOME project – they are now developing a custom interface based on Qt, for smartphones, using the same standard desktop stack. OpenMoko did the same thing with the Freerunner. Intel built a custom shell for netbooks in the Moblin project, which is now the netbook interface for MeeGo. OLPC built a custom designed user interface for educational computing devices. GNOME allows and enables this kind of work, because of the great platform and infrastructure we have provided over the years to all Linux software developers.

        In such illustrious company, forgive me if I think that Canonical’s management has seriously underestimated the difficulty of the task in front of them.

      • Ubuntu changes its desktop from GNOME to Unity

        Unity is Ubuntu’s new netbook interface. While based on GNOME, it is own take on what an interface should look and act like. Shuttleworth explained that Canonical was doing this because “users want Unity as their primary desktop.”

      • Shuttleworth: Unity shell will be default desktop in Ubuntu 11.04
      • Zeitgeist wants you
  • Distributions

    • Red Hat Family

      • Fedora

        • Fedora 15: Lovelock, Pushcart, Sturgis, Asturias?

          Earlier this month the Fedora community began proposing names for Fedora 15 with the proposals ranging from names like Malmstrom to Fortaleza and Gutzwiller. The list, however, has now been narrowed down to five potential candidates for the Fedora 15 codename.

          The potential names for Fedora 15 include Asturias, Lovelock, Pushcart, Sturgis, and perhaps the most normal name is Blarney. Personally I’d pick Blarney or Pushcart.

    • Debian Family

      • Canonical/Ubuntu

        • UDS Natty 11.04 – Mark Shuttleworth keynote – Part 1

          Mark Shuttleworth delivers the keynote speech kicking off the Ubuntu Developer Summit in Orlando, Florida. Note: This is an ‘unofficial’ rip of the video stream from the event which cut part way through.

        • Day 1 – Report from Ubuntu Developer Summit

          And so it begins. For anyone unfamiliar with the Ubuntu Developer Summit, it’s a biannual get together for the great minds of the wider Ubuntu community to figure out what’s going to happen in the next release. It’s pretty unique; almost all of the sessions are entirely open and broadcast online for remote participation.

          My day began, like everyone else’s, with the keynote by Mark Shuttleworth.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Phones

      • Nokia/MeeGo

        • Nokia N900 PR 1.3 Firmware Now Available

          Simply grab the vanilla version for PR 1.3 for your region and get flashing using this guide. If you are on a Mac, this is the guide to follow. The new firmware brings bug fixes, stability improvements and support for Nokia’s Ovi Suite.

      • Android

Free Software/Open Source

  • Events

    • PGDay Europe 2010 schedule announced

      I’m pleased to be able to say that the schedule for this year’s PGDay Europe conference in Stuttgart, Germany on the 6th – 8th December 2010 is now available.

  • Openness/Sharing

    • No base station required: peer-to-peer WiFi Direct is go

      The Wi-Fi Alliance on Monday announced that its direct peer-to-peer networking version of WiFi, called WiFi Direct, is now available on several new WiFi devices. The Alliance is also announcing that it has begun the process of certifying devices for WiFi Direct compatibility.

    • Open Data

      • To Save Students Money, Colleges May Force a Switch to E-Textbooks

        You’ve heard it before: Digital technologies blew up the music industry’s moneymaking model, and the textbook business is next.

        For years observers have predicted a coming wave of e-textbooks. But so far it just hasn’t happened. One explanation for the delay is that while music fans were eager to try a new, more portable form of entertainment, students tend to be more conservative when choosing required materials for their studies. For a real disruption in the textbook market, students may have to be forced to change.

  • Standards/Consortia

    • HTML5 Audio and Video: What you Must Know

      In promotion of what I consider to be the best HTML5 book currently available on the market, Remy Sharp and Bruce Lawson agreed to donate a chapter of Introducing HTML5 to our readers, which details the ins and outs of working with HTML5 video and audio.

Leftovers

  • Interface Message Processor (IMP) – The First Internet Router

    Steve Jurvetson shot this photo of a Interface Message Processor (IMP) made by BBN, which was as used as a router by APRANET to create one of the first nodes Internet in 1969. It is part of an upcoming exhibition at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, CA.

  • Defence/Police/Aggression

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • End of the Exmoor Emperor: sadness after giant red stag shot dead

      After 12 summers, the sun has finally set on the Exmoor Emperor, the magnificent red stag whose epic proportions were his making – and also, it seems, his downfall.

    • Prehistoric creatures discovered in huge Indian amber haul

      Hundreds of prehistoric insects and other creatures have been discovered in a large haul of amber excavated from a coalmine in western India. An international team of fossil hunters recovered 150kg of the dirty brown resin from Cambay Shale in Gujarat province, making it one of the largest amber collections on record. The tiny animals became entombed in the fossilised tree resin some 52m years ago, before the Indian subcontinent crunched into Asia to produce the Himalayan mountain range.

    • Days left to stop mass extinction

      A third of all animals and plants on earth face extinction — endangered blue whales, coral reefs, and a vast array of other species. The wave of human-driven extinction has reached a rate not seen since the fall of the dinosaurs 65 million years ago.

  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

    • NHS ‘suspended whistle-blowers’ in London

      Three senior NHS staff in London claim they have been suspended for whistle-blowing after raising concerns about the hospitals they work in, but have been given other reasons for keeping them off work.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality/DRM

    • Jailbreaking Your iPhone? Legal! Jailbreaking Your Xbox? 3 Years In Jail!

      Bunnie Huang is no stranger to absolutely ridiculous legal claims concerning trying to hack an Xbox. After doing so, he had trouble publishing a book on the subject, over fears that telling people how to modify a piece of electronics they had legally purchased might somehow violate copyright law (anyone else see a problem with that?). Now, techflaws.org points us to the news that Huang is scheduled to testify on behalf of a guy facing jailtime for modifying Xboxes. But US officials are trying to bar his testimony, claiming it’s “not legally relevant.” Technically, they’re probably right. But, from a common sense standpoint, Huang is trying to make a bunch of important points.

    • Mark Cuban: It’s Okay For Broadcasters To Block Access Based On Browsers, Because They’re Making Billions

      Like many tech sites, we recently wrote about the fact that the various TV networks were discriminating based on the browser, blocking access to Google TV’s browser, because they don’t want people to watch the shows they’re already giving away for free online on their TV (even though it’s easy enough to just hook up a computer to a TV and watch via your preferred browser of choice). Marshall Kirkpatrick pointed us to the fact that Mark Cuban decided to respond to Newteevee’s article on the subject, in which the author of the original article reasonably pointed out that this was a braindead strategy by the networks, who were shooting themselves in the foot.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • Universal Claiming Dancing Baby Video Not An Obvious Case Of Fair Use

        The latest part of the case is that both sides have filed for summary judgment, with Lenz arguing that the takedown violated the law, since Universal did not believe in good faith that the video was infringing (as required by the law). Universal’s motion, on the other hand, makes the argument that the 29-second video is not an obvious case of fair use. It still argues that there’s no requirement to check for fair use first, but says that even if it’s supposed to, this video was not obviously fair use.

      • Mom Asks Court to Declare Universal Violated Law in “Dancing Baby” Case

        Back in 2007, Stephanie Lenz posted a video to YouTube of her children dancing and running around in her kitchen. Stephanie wanted to share the moment with her family and friends. But they weren’t the only ones watching: a few months later, Universal Music Corp. had the video removed from YouTube, claiming that the video infringed its copyright.

      • Secret Anti-Piracy Negotiations, 3 Strikes, And a Taxpayer Funded Campaign

        As authorities, rightsholders and ISPs in Denmark negotiate behind an agreed press blackout over the possible introduction of a 3 strikes-style file-sharing regime, the government is set to commit tax payers’ money to the overall plan. The Ministry of Culture says it will help fund a public anti-piracy campaign and will match any financial contributions made by the entertainment industries and ISPs.

      • Porn pros hope to squelch online piracy by 2012

        The film and music businesses couldn’t stop file-sharing, but the porn industry has a plan to drive piracy into the shadows in 15 months or less. Can DogFart, Lords of Porn, and Naughty Bank succeed where others have failed?

      • ACTA

        • KEI’s ACTA timeline
        • Urgent EP written question: Is ACTA voluntary? Only binding for countries of South?

          Article 1.2 in the proposed ACTA agreement states:

          “Each Party shall be free to determine the appropriate method of implementing the provisions of this Agreement within its own legal system and practice.”

          At recent meetings in Washington the US Trade representative has told other US agencies, NGOs and US legislators that ACTA is not binding and that its Article 1. 2 allows for a general flexibility for any element that might contradict ACTA in US law.

Clip of the Day

Iraq War Logs Every Death Mapped – From Wikileaks and Guardian MIRROR


Credit: TinyOgg

Links 25/10/2010: Canonical Splits From GNOME Shell, LibreOffice Gains Momentum

Posted in News Roundup at 2:46 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Tux and the Sixth Sense: I See Dead Linux!

    My colleagues who went to the talk also want to migrate to Linux and Open Office! Didn’t they see the beautiful video Microsoft produced explaining why you shouldn’t? Or how the grades of students are affected negatively if they use Open Office instead of MS Office for their assignments?

  • Numbers and the Death of Desktop Linux

    We are talking about DESKTOP LINUX, remember? What does that mean? Well, that is pretty self-explanatory: it means desktop computers that RUN Linux. We are not talking about sales figures here. We are talking about desktop computers. Sales figures are sales figures; desktop computers are desktop computers. These are different concepts as the realities they embody.

  • Tales from a Windows-free life

    I completely stopped using Windows around 2002, and I’ve really enjoyed it, very, very much :)

    Since then I’ve been distro-hopping (swapping different Linux-versions, more commonly known as “distributions”, or “distros”) through everything from Slackware Linux to Ubuntu. It’s been a rocky and unstable ride to be quite honest, but it’s been an awesome learning-experience.

    I can’t even begin to count all the problems concerning re-installation of Windows on both my hands. Yes, that’s BOTH hands! I really, REALLY hate re-installing Windows. And if you’re a super-user like me, who likes to play around with your computer-systems, you’ve done a re-install a couple of dozen times (or maybe even more).

  • Server

    • LSE makes world record trade speed on Linux

      If the third test is successful, the LSE will open on Linux on 1 November, otherwise it will postpone the launch for a fortnight.

      David Lester, CEO of Turquoise, said that alongside the 126 microsecond average latency, 99% of orders would be processed within 210 microseconds, and only 0.1% will take longer than 400 microseconds.

    • Linux dictionary tools

      The dictionary is a tool that any writer or student should have on their computer. And Linux users are not immune from this need. But if you look through the possibilities of Linux dictionary tools you find quite a large amount available. Which of these tools are the best or easiest to use?

  • Audiocasts/Shows

  • Kernel Space

    • Graphics Stack

      • Nouveau Gets Zaphod Mode Support

        It was just last week that page-flipping and sync-to-vblank support came to the Nouveau driver and now this open-source NVIDIA driver has initial support for Zaphod mode. While the Nouveau kernel mode-setting code has supported RandR 1.2 for quite a while with multi-monitor support, Red Hat’s Ben Skeggs has made an initial pass at providing Zaphod mode.

        According to Ben’s Git commit this less than 100 line patch should provide Zaphod mode capabilities for at least simple configurations. Zaphod mode is an older, alternate way for configuring dual-head mode support under Linux (rather than just configuring the displays with RandR) and is supported by some drivers. Setting up Nouveau’s Zaphod mode requires using the ZaphodHeads option (similar to the other supportive drivers) within the xorg.conf for specifying the RandR outputs that should be used for a particular driver instance.

      • X.Org Server 1.9.1 Released By Apple’s Huddleston

        As we mentioned earlier, Apple’s Jeremy Huddleston took over release management of the X.Org Server 1.9 series now that it’s stable and will only receive bug-fixes from this point on. Meanwhile, Keith Packard and the gang of X.Org developers are focusing on X.Org Server 1.10 to have that ready by early next year. Jeremy Huddleston on this Saturday night has just made his first point release, X.Org Server 1.9.1.

        This release though is not exactly a surprise considering there’s been release candidates for a few weeks and it was expected to make its debut in October so that it can be released as part of the X.Org 7.6 Katamari, but all has been quiet on that front, so it may be delayed or has just been held up until xorg-server 1.9.1.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC)

      • Managing Offline Routing Maps in Marble

        Unlike tile-based maps used as layers in map themes, offline routing maps consist of large chunks of data that enable the calculation of routes in a certain area. For all of the offline routers supported by Marble, these maps are created by a router specific conversion tool: Put an osm map file in, get a router map file out. When copied to the right place, Marble uses them for offline routing. This task can only be accomplishing by users with detailed technical knowledge and quite some motivation to read the documentation and follow all steps. Clearly nothing I’d expect from the average user.

    • GNOME Desktop

      • Canonical Ubuntu splits from GNOME over design issues

        Canonical is changing the default interface on the next release of Ubuntu from GNOME to Unity, a new open source project that focuses on simplified interface and three dimensional displays.

        Canonical made the switch for the next release of its Ubuntu desktop Linux distribution, because of increasingly divergent views of how a desktop interface should look and operate, according to Canonical founder Mark Shuttleworth.

      • First GNOME 3.0 development release arrives

        The GNOME development team have issued the first development version of GNOME 3.0, the next major release of the popular open source desktop for GNU / Linux and Unix. Version 3 of GNOME was originally scheduled for release towards the end of last month, however, in July of this year the release date was moved back by six months to April of 2011 because the GNOME release team felt the code was not sufficiently mature.

  • Distributions

    • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandrake/Mandriva Family

    • Red Hat Family

      • Red Hat Inc. (RHT) EVP, CFO Charles E Jr Peters sells 5,688 Shares

        Red Hat Inc. has a market cap of $7.4 billion; its shares were traded at around $39.15 with a P/E ratio of 71.1 and P/S ratio of 10. Red Hat Inc. had an annual average earning growth of 22.7% over the past 5 years.

      • VeriSign Inc. Attracting Bullish Investors; VRSN, MSFT, RHT

        VRSN competes in the Application Software industry with Microsoft Corporation (MSFT) [Chart - Analysis - News]—the largest firm in the industry group—and Red Hat, Inc. (RHT) [Chart - Analysis - News], who have returned 3.88% and 1.47% during the past month, respectively. VRSN is likely to be sensitive to its competitors so future weakness in the Application Software industry could be an early warning sign that things might be turning around.

      • Red Hat Broke Resistance
      • Fedora

        • Approved, Now I’m a Fedora Ambassador =)

          I’ve been approved as a Fedora Ambassador for the North America region. I’d like to thank my mentor Larry Cafiero and the people in the #fedora-ambassadors irc channel on Freenode. My goals in this position are to spread the good word about the Fedora Project. I’ll be attending various Fedora events, I’ll be setting up my own events and I’ll likely do some talks regarding key features in the latest release of Fedora which will soon be Fedora 14. I am also investigating the process of setting up a Fedora and Free Software based netcast. It’s something I’ve started to get interest in ever since I saw a book on it at Value Village this weekend.

    • Debian Family

      • Canonical/Ubuntu

        • Ubuntu 11.04 to ship Unity as default desktop?

          A blueprint suggesting a that a variant of the Unity netbook interface should be used on the desktop edition for Natty Narwhal has been approved by Mark Shuttleworth for discussion at the Ubuntu Developer Summit this week.

        • UDS-N: Planning for the Ubuntu 11.04 Cycle Begins Today

          What’s on tap for this week in the world of Ubuntu? It’s the Ubuntu Developer Summit for the Ubuntu 11.04, Natty Narwhal cycle, otherwise known as UDS-N.

          Just as UDS website states, “Be there and make a difference”, I’ll be blogging, denting, tweeting, facebooking and more from the sessions this week. I am looking forward to seeing what we, as users of Ubuntu, can expect for our desktops, servers, ARM devices, and more from Ubuntu 11.04.

          There is also community sessions where I’ll find out what projects are happening in and around the community where you can contribute and let you know about those as well.

        • Linux Virtualization Performance Of Ubuntu 8.04 LTS Through Ubuntu 10.10

          Earlier this month we delivered Ubuntu 10.10 benchmarks from some different hardware comparing the performance of this “Maverick Meerkat” release to that of Ubuntu 9.10 and 10.04.1 LTS. The results were interesting, but since then we have had the time to complete additional tests. In this benchmarking roundabout, we decided to see how the performance of every release from Ubuntu 8.04 LTS through the new Ubuntu Linux release performs when tested in a virtualized environment using Linux’s KVM virtualization. Here are the virtualized guest results for Ubuntu 8.04.4 LTS, 8.10, 9.04, 9.10, 10.04.1 LTS, and 10.10.

        • Ubuntu 11.04 will use Unity as the default desktop

          In his keynote address at the Ubuntu Developer Summit Mark Shuttleworth has announced that Ubuntu 11.04 will use a new desktop version of Unity for the default desktop environment.

          ‘Desktop Unity’ will be installed as the default desktop for users whose hardware support it. Improved work on the hardware front will ensure as many users are able to benefit from the unified interface as possible.

        • Ubuntu 11.04 to ship Unity

          …we have already started porting !Unity from mutter to Compiz and the initial work is much faster…

        • ‘Sponsor an app’ model coming to Ubuntu Software Centre in 11.04

          Helping to fund your favourite open-source applications will become much easier in Ubuntu 11.04.

          A new method will be introduced to the Ubuntu Software Store to allow users to ‘sponsor a package’ for any amount they so wish via the in-place UbuntuOne payment structure.

        • Ubuntu 11.04 Desktop To Get Rid Of GNOME’s Shell

          While GNOME 3.0 is expected to roll out in March and will boast the brand new GNOME Shell interface with the Mutter compositing window manager, this will not appear by default in the Ubuntu desktop. Certainly not in Ubuntu 11.04 and it doesn’t look like it will be used at all in the future by default (granted, you’ll be able to install the shell from a package repository). It’s just been announced that beginning with Ubuntu 11.04, the desktop spin will begin using the Unity shell that Canonical originally developed for netbooks.

        • LibreOffice 3.3.0 in Ubuntu

          LibreOffice is a productivity suite that is compatible with other major office suites, and available on a variety of platforms. LibreOffice is a fork of the famous project OpenOffice project which is now under Oracle. It is free software and servers all your basic needs. It is the result of immense efforts by The Document Foundation aimed at making an Office suite or desktops that servers all your needs for free.

        • Unity Confirmed As The Default Desktop Interface For Ubuntu 11.04, New Icon Theme Should Be Ready By 12.04

          Unity is the current Ubuntu Netbook Edition interface and has received a lot of criticism since UNE 10.10 came out such as not being finished, poor performance and the lack of customization.

        • Unity To Use Compiz instead of Mutter

          If you though Compiz was left in the dark once Gnome Shell comes out, think again.

        • Sticking With Ubuntu 10.04 LTS OR Switching To Ubuntu 10.10

          No doubt that Ubuntu 10.04 LTS was a really good distribution and still it’s LTS ” Long Term Support ” release, Desktop releases will be supported for 3 years and server releases supported for 5 years, but with Ubuntu 10.10 won’t be supported when the next release comes out 11.04 Natty Narwhal.

        • CloudSigma Launches Ubuntu 10.10 Cloud Servers

          CloudSigma AG, a leading European provider of cloud servers is pleased to announce the launch of a new range of pre-installed Ubuntu 10.10 servers in its cloud. CloudSigma customers can now enjoy the new features of Ubuntu’s new ‘Maverick Meerkat’ release in the form of instantly deployable high performing cloud servers.

        • Troubleshoot: Ubuntu 10.10 Folder Opens With Media Player

          The latest version of Ubuntu known as Maverick Meerckat or 10.10 has a minor bug which might be bothering you as well. When you try to open a folder via Places, instead of opening it as a folder, it opens it with some media player, Rhythmbox or VLC, etc.

        • Ubuntu 10.10 ‘Maverick Meerkat’ officially released

          The tenth day of the tenth month in the tenth year of this century has been the day for revolutionary day in mobile technology.

          Ubuntu Linux hit the market on this day with a 10.10 revision that is using a new Unity desktop interface, which is expected to make the congested net book screens more organized. This software purchase will make the Ubuntu platform as an app with a free 2 GB Drop box-like cloud storage that automatically synchronizes the files and folders, while streaming music to android and other devices like iPhones.

        • Ubuntu Maverick Meerkat Pokes Its Head Out

          Version 10.10 of Ubuntu, also known as “Maverick Meerkat,” has arrived. The Linux operating system comes in three different versions: one of desktops and laptops, one for servers and one with a special Unity interface designed specifically for netbooks. For version 10.10, Canonical has put a great deal of focus on the OS’s cloud offerings.

        • Flavours and Variants

  • Devices/Embedded

    • The Small Wonder: Belkin’s Connect N150 Wifi Router is Linux-Friendly

      Yesterday, I stopped by my local Walmart to buy a wireless router for my network. I wanted something small with good performance, a good price, and compatible with GNU/Linux. As I searched the computer electronics aisle, I saw wireless routers ranging from over $100 all the way down to about $60. However, $60 was more than I wanted to spend. I didn’t need anything fancy, just something that would allow me to get on the Internet with my IBM T40 laptop and my Dell netbook. I didn’t need IEEE 802.11n, 802.11g is fast enough for my network needs. I looked down and I saw the little white and yellow box containing the Belkin Connect N150. It seemed like a nice looking device, which made me quite happy. I was even happier when I saw the price: $29.95!

    • Phones

Free Software/Open Source

  • My Client Base- An Open Source Invoicing App for Your Business

    MyClientBase is an open source invoice and client management application that was built with simplicity and ease of use in mind. Running on your webserver, it comes with the following features among others

    * Multi Lingual
    * Customisable invoicing
    * Modular, extend functionality with contributed modules
    * Support for multi tax rate

  • SaaS

    • How is OpenStack Stacking Up?

      You may have noticed there’s a fair bit of interest in this cloud computing thing. You’ve probably also come across various articles suggesting this is the end of free software – and the world – as we know it, since cloud-based platforms render operating systems on servers and desktops largely moot.

    • Well, There’s No Radeon HD 6000 Open-Source Surprise

      We said there won’t be Radeon HD 6000 support ready for the Linux 2.6.37 kernel (the kernel release that’s beginning its development cycle right now) and that we’re unlikely to see any kernel mode-setting support ready before the Linux 2.6.38 kernel even if things go well. A Gallium3D driver is likely to come (not a classic Mesa driver) at some point after the DRM code has landed. Basically, if we’re lucky by the time major Linux distributions start rolling out in 2011 (i.e. Ubuntu 11.04, Fedora 15) we may see some form of open-source support for these new AMD Radeon graphics processors. However, at least a few users we’re wondering if AMD had some magical or surprise open-source drop to do for the Radeon HD 6800 series. Unfortunately, they do not. While there is no code or documentation to provide, in the days since the Radeon HD 6850/6870 launch we have learned at least a few more details about the forthcoming support.

  • Oracle

    • Links: Parting Words, Public Statements

      It’s autumn, the leaves are falling and the nights are drawing in. The season for endings is upon us.

    • G’Day and Goodbye

      And now, a different and exciting job awaits. My last day here is Oct 25, ending a brief and busy four years at Sun and then Oracle.

    • 5 Myths About OpenOffice.org / LibreOffice

      Most free software accumulates myths. Most people only know about it second hand (if at all), but few are slowed by the fact that they don’t know what they are talking abo

    • LibreOffice Contributions stats

      We had a really important amount of new contributions, but people tends to prefer figures to see it. I used the git repositories logs and gitdm to get the data and produce some graphs showing the intense activity around LibreOffice. The gitdm configuration and scripts to extract the data can be found in my personal git repos on freedesktop.org. The first graph is showing the number of contributors increasing each week. There are a few interesting points to note:

      * The number of new contributors grew quickly. The graph don’t show it, but there are now more than 60 new contributors.
      * The contributors counted in this graph are either developers or people working on localization.
      * Oracle is contributing: LibreOffice merges OpenOffice.org changes.

    • Finally! SVG Coming to OpenOffice.org

      It has been a long time but SVG import is coming to OpenOffice.org. This improves the scalability of graphics and makes it easier to use tools like InkScape to produce graphics for OpenOffice.org. This issue has been on the bug file since 2001… Some people have more patience than I.

    • Competition is Good

      Want to know how I spent yesterday? I spent many hours on a single XP machine that had lost its anti-malware. The download of anti-virus libraries took all day because they kept aborting. I installed OpenOffice.org 3.2.1, Google Chrome browser as well as the fool anti-virus.

    • IBM office suite Lotus Symphony 3 released (updated with .64bit .deb)

      The latest version of IBM’s OpenOffice.org based office suite ‘Lotus Symphony’ has been released.

      Lotus Symphony 3 boasts many new and enhanced features; benefits from the OpenOffice 3 codebase and introduces new sidebars for .

    • First Stable Release Of Libre Office In Late November

      With the formation of the Document Foundation (TDF), we saw the arrival of another office suite based on OpenOffice — it’s called Libre Office. Recently there was some conflict between TDF and OpenOffice.org/Oracle teams. We approached TDF to understand the current situation and the future of Libre Office. Here is an interview with Italo Vignoli of The Document Foundation.

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

    • Fellowship interview with Leena Simon

      Leena Simon is studying philosophy at Potsdam University and is currently completing a dissertation on problems with the concept of “intellectual property”. She also works with FoeBuD, and was involved in the organisation of this year’s “Freedom Not Fear” demonstrations which took place throughout Europe. We sat down to discuss the dangers of state surveillance, the importance of the politicisation of software, and how organisations like FoeBud and The Pirate Party, as well as the Free Software movement, must be careful not to succumb to dogmatism. For more, check out leena.de.

    • Soft option

      The last 27 years have witnessed the rise of a different kind of software built in a different manner. This is the Free Software movement, started in September 1983 by Richard Stallman, who was working at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), United States, at that time. He started the GNU project to develop software that would free users from the restrictive licences imposed by software companies. He also prepared the GNU General Public Licence, or GPL, a “copy-left” licence currently in its third version, under which such software can be distributed so that the freedoms are always preserved. He was soon joined by many people, and today there are possibly tens of thousands of people contributing to various pieces of software that are distributed under free licences. The freedom to share it freely makes it available at virtually no cost, while the freedom to study and modify the software ensures that the human readable source code is available for anyone who wants it. And bugs are quickly discovered and fixed.

  • Licensing

    • License compliance is not a problem for open source users

      Average:

      License compliance is a major and costly issue for proprietary software, but the license involved in that case is an End User License Agreement (EULA), not a source license delivering extensive liberties. When we compare like-for-like, we discover open source software has no such issues. End-users do not need to have a license management server, do not need to hold audits, do not need to fear BSA raids. Open source is so much easier!

      But it’s easy to forget that. The New York Times recently featured the activities of the GPL enforcement community. While there’s a part of me that’s pleased there are people doing this, I’m concerned that their well-intentioned actions – and those elsewhere, such as the Linux Foundation’s compliance programme – are the focus of public understanding about open source software. Of the many attributes of software freedom that could move to front-of-mind, it strikes me that the minimal license compliance burdens for open source software are actually a comparative strength and having them presented as a feature applies a “frame” that serves only the detractors of software freedom.

  • Openness/Sharing

  • Standards/Consortia

    • W3C Announces MathML 3, New Standards for Math on the Web

      W3C has announced the third version of its standards for the inclusion of mathematical expressions in Web pages. MathML (Mathematical Markup Language) is aimed to make math on the Web more accessible and more international. While the basic markup remains the same, this version brings to it some improvements for assistive technology, as well as for formulas in languages that are written from right to left.

Leftovers

  • Murdoch Wakes Up From Dream Of Leading News Industry’s Digital Aggregation

    The publisher may be right in the middle of introducing fees for its own online newspapers, but it is putting on ice Rupert Murdoch’s grander ambition of creating a pay-for digital news service comprising content from the entire UK news industry. At the same time, sources familiar with the company’s plans say similar efforts in the U.S. have been put on a slower track, but not being canceled.

  • Skype Demands Mobile App Nimbuzz Remove Support, Effective October 31st

    Nimbuzz, a popular mobile communication service provider, has been asked by Skype to remove support for all Skype services, effective October 31st.

    The startup will be announcing the news to its 30 million or so registered users later today.

  • Connect Any Wi-Fi Device to Any Other Wi-Fi Device with Wi-Fi Direct

    The Wi-Fi Alliance is about to drop a wireless connectivity bombshell called Wi-Fi Direct that will enable device-to-device connections using current Wi-Fi standards. The Wi-Fi Alliance will begin certifying Wi-Fi Direct devices today.

  • Amazon to Allow Book Lending on the Kindle

    One of the oldest customs of book lovers and libraries — lending out favorite titles to friends and patrons — is finally getting recognized in the electronic age, at least in one electronic book reader: Amazon has announced that it plans to allow users of its Kindle book reader to “lend” electronic books to other Kindle users, based on the publisher’s discretion.

  • Science

    • The MetraSCAN 3D Scanner

      Creaform just announced a brand new ultra-high-end handheld 3D scanner, the MetraSCAN. This totally amazing 2Kg device can scan 3D objects up to 10m in size to an astounding resolution of only 0.05mm, at a rate of 36,000 measurements per second!

  • Security

    • iPhone Jailbreak Tool Sets Stage for Mobile Malware
    • Linux bug bestows attackers with ‘superuser’ powers
    • Firesheep

      Firesheep is free, open source, and is available now for Mac OS X and Windows. Linux support is on the way.

      Websites have a responsibility to protect the people who depend on their services. They’ve been ignoring this responsibility for too long, and it’s time for everyone to demand a more secure web. My hope is that Firesheep will help the users win.

    • A frightening bug

      Just a quick note to let everyone know that Glibc is dangerous. This bug can be exploited to gain root privileges. This means that, basically, everything in the GNU tool chain is potentially a vector for entry. Hopefully a patch will be forthcoming, after which you can expect a million recompiles the world over.

  • Defence/Police/Aggression

    • Was the WikiLeaks Founder Right to Walk From This Interview? [VIDEO]

      Frustrated at the direction the media’s narrative has taken, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange walked out of an interview with CNN’s Atika Schubert.

      She inquired about the rape allegations made against him in Sweden but he threatened several times to walk when she brought the subject up. When she didn’t drop it completely, he removed his mic and walked away.

      The reporter drew some frustrated comments from Assange when she suggested that the rape accusations — which Assange believe were fabricated by the Pentagon or another enemy — affect WikiLeaks. “I’m not going to talk about that in relation to this … this interview is about something else.

    • Wikileaks documents: New info on Iraq war

      Over the weekend, Wikileaks struck again. That’s the Web site that continues to get its hands on some sensitive documents and releases the information.

    • NYT v. the world: WikiLeaks coverage

      To supplement my post yesterday about The New York Times’ government-subservient coverage of the WikiLeaked documents regarding the war that newspaper played such a vital role in enabling, consider — beyond the NYT’s sleazy, sideshow-smears against Julian Assange — the vast disparity between how newspapers around the world and The New York Times reported on a key revelation from these documents: namely, that the U.S. systematically and pursuant to official policy ignored widespread detainee abuse and torture by Iraqi police and military (up to and including murders).

    • Five bombshells from WikiLeaks’ Iraq war documents

      In the largest document leak in US history, WikiLeaks has released more than 400,000 secret US documents about the Iraq war. As with the second-largest leak in US history – the 92,000 Afghan war documents released in July – much of the substance of the leaks has been reported already, but details are new.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • Tea Party climate change deniers funded by BP and other major polluters

      BP and several other big European companies are funding the midterm election campaigns of Tea Party favourites who deny the existence of global warming or oppose Barack Obama’s energy agenda, the Guardian has learned.

      An analysis of campaign finance by Climate Action Network Europe (Cane) found nearly 80% of campaign donations from a number of major European firms were directed towards senators who blocked action on climate change. These included incumbents who have been embraced by the Tea Party such as Jim DeMint, a Republican from South Carolina, and the notorious climate change denier James Inhofe, a Republican from Oklahoma.

    • BP sells Gulf of Mexico oil field assets to Marubeni

      BP has said it will sell its interests in four Gulf of Mexico oil fields to Japan’s Marubeni as part of its moves to pay for the oil spill there.

      The deal, which is subject to regulatory approval, is expected to raise $650m (£413m).

      BP is in the process of selling assets worth up to $30bn to meet clean-up and compensation costs.

      Last week, the company announced it would sell business interests in Vietnam and Venezuela for $1.8bn.

  • Finance

    • Foreclosures: A Paperwork Fiasco

      After months of horror stories, it seemed that the real estate mess could not get any worse. But now, the nation is in the middle of yet another foreclosure crisis.

    • Think this economy is bad? Wait for 2012.

      We’re barely two years past the banking crisis, still weathering the mortgage crisis and nervously watching Europe struggle with its sovereign debt crisis. Yet every economic seer has a favorite prediction about what part of the economy the next crisis will come from: Municipal bonds? Hedge funds? Derivatives? The federal debt?

    • G-20 powers agree to Geithner currency and trade plan

      Finance ministers from the world’s major nations agreed to a U.S.-brokered plan for easing tensions over exchange rates and world trade patterns, saying that a “fragile and uneven” economic recovery was at risk if top powers pursued conflicting policies or used the value of their currencies to gain an edge for their exports.

    • The Worst Economist in the World

      A thought: it has occurred to me that we could use an economics equivalent of Keith Olbermann’s “Worst Person in the World” award. KO does not, of course, mean that the person he goes after on any given night really is the worst person in the world; he just uses the title to highlight some especially awful action or statement.

    • Obama: Consumers lose if financial law repealed

      President Barack Obama says consumers would lose if Republicans regain power in Congress and try to roll back his hard-won Wall Street overhaul.

    • Banks make moves to deal with fallout of regulatory changes

      As the banking community wades through the murky waters of regulatory changes, Washington area institutions are forging ahead with strategies to offset compliance costs, falling fee income and tepid loan demand.

    • The Subprime Debacle: Act 2, Part 2
    • Big Problem for Banks: Due Process

      Earlier this week, Bank of America, the nation’s largest consumer bank, reported its third-quarter earnings. It was a very good quarter; putting aside an accounting charge — a very large, $10.4 billion accounting charge, admittedly — the bank reported $3.1 billion in profits. It was the third consecutive quarter that Bank of America had earned more than $3 billion.

    • Health insurers help GOP after dalliance with Dems

      Health insurers flirted with Democrats, supported them with money and got what they wanted: a federal mandate that most Americans carry health care coverage. Now they’re backing Republicans, hoping a GOP Congress will mean friendlier regulations.

      They may get more than they’re wishing for.

    • Europe gives up IMF seats to emerging powers, China

      The G20 sealed an accord branded as “historic” on Saturday (24 October) to reform the International Monetary Fund, in a grand bargain that will see Europe give up two seats on the Fund’s Executive Board in return for greater responsibility from emerging economies on currency valuations.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality/DRM

    • Time to reboot our push for global Internet freedom

      Last Tuesday 215,646 Internet users in Iran evaded their regime to visit sites such as Facebook, Twitter and RadioFarda.com, the U.S.-funded Persian-language news service. In Syria, 14,886 people freely surfed; in Vietnam, 10,612; in Saudi Arabia, 14,691; in China, 18,000.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Facebook Sues Faceporn, Cites Copyright Infringement

      Facebook has filed another lawsuit, this time against Faceporn.com, an x-rated social-networking site. Facebook filed suit on Oct. 15 in the U.S. District Court in Northern California, claiming that Faceporn copied Facebook to build its site and is in violation of copyright.

      Faceporn calls itself “the number one socializing porn and sex network,” but its site has been down since Wednesday according a Tweet.

    • Copyrights

      • Facts and Figures on Copyright Three-Strike Rule in Korea

        Unlike the suspension by the Minister’s order, a suspension by the Copyright Commission’ recommendation can be made without requiring that the unauthorized reproduction or transmission takes place at least three times.

      • Anonymous takes FACT down …

        You wouldn’t shoot a policeman, steal his helmet, go to the toilet in it and then send it to his grieving widow?

        Would you?

        That’s what the IT Crowd ask in a FACT parody.

        The IT Crowd is a British Channel 4 sitcom “Set in the London offices of the fictional corporation Reynholm Industries”, says the Wikipedia.

      • ACTA

        • KEI Letter to the European Parliament regarding ACTA, October 25, 2010

          Negotiations on ACTA were formally announced on October 23, 2007. Now, three years later, the European Parliament is being asked to endorse an agreement that was officially published in near final form on October 6, 2010.[1] This letter addresses our concerns about the current text, and asks the Parliament to consider actions that would address its shortcomings.

          Overall, and in many important areas, the October 2010 version of the ACTA text is a significant improvement over the only other public version, the one published on April 16, 2010. In the October 2010 text, a number of important safeguards have been added in areas such as privacy, public health, and in clarifying the objectives and purposes of the agreement. The border measures and the Internet provisions have been significantly improved by removing patents from the border measures, narrowing the scope and more carefully addressing the importance of safeguards and balance in the text. We also note improvements in the civil litigation provisions on injunctions. This said, there are outstanding issues that are important, and which may undermine the credibility, usefulness and durability of the agreement.

        • ACTA, Democracy & Access to Medicines

          Briefing Note for Members of the European Parliament by HAI, TACD, MSF and Oxfam

          Negotiations are not the end of the road – ACTA is a blank cheque for the future

          In a move that would circumvent open debate and due scrutiny, the agreement proposes an annual meeting of signatories where amendments to the Treaty can be negotiated. Even some of the most contentious issues that have been removed during the negotiations could, within a year, be back in the text once ACTA is out of the public spotlight. Any future changes to ACTA must be subject to public scrutiny by all stakeholders and must receive parliamentary approval. (ACTA, Art. 6.4: Amendments, Arts. 5.1.2. 5.1.4)

Clip of the Day

The Digital Prism Screencast: MintUpdate (also see: An Identi.ca Group For The Screencast)


Credit: TinyOgg

10.24.10

Links 24/10/2010: Fedora is Fast, Compiz 0.9.2

Posted in News Roundup at 9:58 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

  • The proliferation of open source software

    Infrastructure and Communications Minister Austin Gatt launched what he called a Vision document yesterday, addressing open source software in government. “We would like to receive feedback from the public and private sectors, as well as citizens on this document which is up for consultation,” he said.

    The government’s position with respect to open source software is different from the position adopted for open standards, where they required that government procures ICT solutions that comply with open standards.

  • Web Browsers

  • Oracle

    • A response to microsoft’s a few perspectives on openoffice.org

      Of course there will always be the spin doctors at Microsoft that are able to make people think that they emanate some sort of heavenly glow. But most techies actually know better then that. If you don’t believe me just notice that in the you tube video they had to turn comments off. Also notice that the video has 236 likes and 2,439 dislikes. Hmm that’s what we call backlash people because guess what opensource and Free Software people pay attention. We are not just going to stand by in idle while you just harass us and defame our community. Even if our only defense is to post nasty comments and to dislike your you tube video a million times.

    • Wind of Change

      this e-mail is to inform you that I hereby, effective immediately, fully step back from all my roles and duties within the OpenOffice.org project, including those as marketing project lead and German marketing contact.

    • Christoph Noack: Resignation from the Community Council
  • CMS

    • Drupal 7.0 Beta 2 released

      Our last Drupal 7 beta version was released about a month ago. Today, we’re proud to announce the release of the second (and possibly final!) beta version of Drupal 7.x for your further testing and feedback. The first alpha announcement provided a comprehensive list of improvements made since Drupal 6.x, so in this announcement we’ll concentrate on how you can help ensure that Drupal 7 is released as soon as possible and is as rock solid as the previous Drupal releases that you’ve grown to love!

    • Contributing to Open Source 101 with Diaspora

      The Ruby and Rails ecosystems are built on open source, and on contributions to projects from people like you. Contributing back to the projects you use is good for your resume, your network, and is ultimately what keeps us employed!

      But figuring out where to start can be daunting, so at this meetup we’ll take you through the complete process. We’ll start with finding a project you’re interested in, then walk you through the mechanics of making changes and contributing them back. By the end of the workshop you’ll be an official open source contributor.

      We’ll be using Diaspora, an open-source alternative to facebook, as our project. Several of the Diaspora core team will be around to assist, and to merge your changes back in to the main codebase…as you watch. It’ll definitely be better than Cats.

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

    • Google’s Go Has Been Called To Go Into GCC 4.6

      Last year one of the many projects introduced by Google was the Go programming language. Do you remember? It’s reached a state of being a production-ready language, at least within Google’s confines, but this project hasn’t received as much attention and interest by the Linux and open-source communities as some of their other work such as VP8 and their new container format. It’s possible that this could change once the Go programming language is accessible to more developers, which may very well come with GCC 4.6.

  • Openness/Sharing

    • Open Data

      • If you care about public sector information in Europe – speak up now!

        The European Public Sector Information (PSI) Directive is intended to make it easier for everyone to find and reuse information produced by public bodies. The European Commission’s recognition of the value of PSI dates back to at least the late 1990s, well before the more recent wave of interest in open government data. The EC is currently asking for feedback on what could be done to improve the Directive, so if you care about PSI in Europe now is your chance to have your say!

      • Transparency must extend to Britain’s “public, private” state

        The spending review, announced this week, promises £81 billion worth of cuts over the next four years. Whilst services face the deepest cutbacks in generations, billions of pounds a year will still need to be found to finance our PFi commitments. Amidst all the talk from government ministers of “efficiency” savings, there has been almost no mention of PFI and its legacy on the public purse.

    • Open Hardware

      • Hackvision, an open-source video game system

        MAKE subscriber James wrote in to share the Hackvision, an open-source video game system based around the Arduino platform. The joypad-shaped circuit board plugs directly into your TV, and provides everything you need to get hacking on your own games. The whole project is open source, and all the source code/schematics/board designs are available at the project website.

  • Programming

    • Perl and Parrot Spread Open Source Love

      The Perl Foundation and the Parrot Foundation took part in Google Summer of Code this year, and as the organization administrator, I am very proud of and humbled by all the students and mentors that I worked with. I am constantly reminded that there are very intelligent developers who are very young, and the Perl and Parrot Foundations are very lucky to attract them and have them in our communities. I firmly believe that the passing Google Summer of Code 2010 projects have had a large positive impact on our codebases and many people will benefit from them for years to come.

Leftovers

  • Science

    • Discovery of taste receptors in the lungs could help people with asthma breathe easier

      This is a slide of lung taste receptors through a microscope. Red bands are receptors, blue dots are nuclei. Credit: University of Maryland School of Medicine

      Taste receptors in the lungs? Researchers at the University of Maryland School of Medicine in Baltimore have discovered that bitter taste receptors are not just located in the mouth but also in human lungs. What they learned about the role of the receptors could revolutionize the treatment of asthma and other obstructive lung diseases.

  • Defence/Police/Aggression

    • Georgia at a crossroads: after the post-war

      When Russian troops gradually withdrew from Georgia’s towns and villages in September 2008 following the short war between Georgia and Russia the previous month over the enclave of South Ossetia, attention turned to the potential consequences of the war for the career of Georgia’s unpredictable president Mikheil Saakashvili. Many analysts believed that after what proved to be a humiliating military conflict was over, the Georgia’s people would turn against Saakashvili and drive him from power.

    • China blocks UN report on the use of Chinese arms in Darfur

      The Chinese government has attempted to block a United Nations report which claims that Chinese bullets were used in attacks on UN peacekeepers in Darfur. A spokesman from the Chinese foreign ministry, Ma Zhaoxu, said the report was “based on unconfirmed information and made irresponsible accusations.” The report, researched and written by the UN’s panel of experts on Sudan was discussed in the UN committee that monitors sanctions on Sudan on Wednesday.

    • Accused G20 ringleader arrested again

      Alex Hundert, an accused G20 violence ringleader, has been arrested — again.

      This is the third time the 30-year-old activist has been arrested in the past five months. The Crown has been appealing to have his bail revoked.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • Ministers plan huge sell-off of Britain’s forests

      Caroline Spelman, the Environment Secretary, is expected to announce plans within days to dispose of about half of the 748,000 hectares of woodland overseen by the Forestry Commission by 2020.

      The controversial decision will pave the way for a huge expansion in the number of Center Parcs-style holiday villages, golf courses, adventure sites and commercial logging operations throughout Britain as land is sold to private companies.

    • Forests sell-off plan by government is ‘asset-stripping our natural heritage’

      Many of England’s best-loved forests and woodlands may be sold to large landowners, housing developers and international power companies in what could be the UK’s greatest change of land ownership since the second world war.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • Copyright Infringement Is Not Theft

        Theft implies loss; and for loss to occur (whatever the circumstances) there has to be a change in stasis from “having” something to “not having” it. Copying something creates an identical duplicate of something, it does not change the stasis of the original. So let’s work through possible angles to explain “loss”.

        Lost stock? “Copyright infringement is stealing, it’s no different from leaving a store with a physical piece of stock that you haven’t paid for.” Wrong, if you have 10 items of stock and 2 are shoplifted, you’re left with 8 items of stock. This is theft. You’ve lost stock. Instead of being able to sell 10 items, you can now only sell 8. That stock cost you £X per item, you’ve lost £X x 2.

      • Memo: re P2P

        The dramatic appearance of the WikiLeaks Iraq war log documents is about far more than the catastrophic (for the US military) release online of classified material.

        It underscores the new reality that the Powers That Used To Be have lost their ability to tightly control the spread of news and information.

      • It’s All (Hopefully) Coming Back To Me Now

        Now comes news that the family of late country singer Keith Whitley is doing the same. The suit filed by Whitley’s widow and children against Sony Music Entertainment alleges that SME failed to pay certain bonus royalties when Whitley’s album reached various sales thresholds. The suit also claims that SME failed to pay the increased royalty rate for downloads that allegedly should have been considered licensed transactions.

      • The music industry’s new business model

        Something strange has happened to pop music since I began reviewing it in the late 1990s. In the past, how you listened to music played second fiddle to what it sounded like. Only finger-sniffing audiophiles cared whether you listened to Nirvana’s Nevermind in 1991 on vinyl, cassette or CD. To everyone else the point was the album itself.

        No longer. Nowadays the format of music, the way it’s sold or listened to, overshadows everything else. MP3 players, internet streaming services, MySpace, mobile phones: music is everywhere. Good news for listeners but perplexing for record companies, who are seeing revenues from recorded music dry up as the old ways of doing business crumble.

      • Business Spectator and Creative Commons

        We’re proud and pleased to let you know that from today, February 16th, 2010, we’re rolling out Creative Commons licenses on some of our proprietary content.

      • ACTA

Clip of the Day

Slackware 13.1 Installation


Credit: TinyOgg

Links 24/10/2010: Xorg-server 1.9.1 is Out, Will Canonical Sue Apple?

Posted in News Roundup at 1:57 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Power Users

    The presence or absence of “power users” should be no barrier to general adoption of GNU/Linux. The same advantages seen on the server can be obtained on fast and reliable desktops running GNU/Linux: security, efficiency, uptime, lower cost etc.

  • Three Acres and a Penguin: Why Distributists Should Try Linux

    Have you heard of Linux? Maybe you went to download Firefox (a free web browser), clicked around, and noticed that after “Windows” and “Mac” there was “Linux”, with a little penguin. (His name is Tux.) Maybe you’re periodically forced to interact with your IT department, and you’ve overheard “Linux” as they discuss their arcane secrets. Maybe you’re way ahead of me, and are irritated because I’m probably not going to mention OpenBSD.

    Or maybe you have no clue what I’m talking about. What is Linux? Basically, Linux is a pile of programs that lets you take your computer, strip it down to the bare hardware, and start fresh. Linux is an alternative operating system . If you just download Firefox, you’re still in Microsoft Windows or OS X. When you download Linux, you’re in Linux.

    [...]

    This also should excite distributists. Free software is a unique ecosystem. (I’m going to stop saying “Linux” now; it sounds cooler than “free software,” but it actually has a definite technical meaning, and it isn’t the only free OS in town, either.) A program is not like an apple. If I share my apple with you, we each only get half.

  • Kernel Space

    • RFC: A Preview Of The Phoronix Graphs With Iveland

      Earlier this week I shared part of the vision that Matthew Tippett and I have for OpenBenchmarking.org (the next-generation version of Phoronix Global) and how it will change Linux benchmarking when launched with Phoronix Test Suite 3.0. One of the features of OpenBenchmarking.org / Phoronix Test Suite 3.0 “Iveland” is a major overhaul to the result graphs. Here’s a preview of what’s to come and we welcome your feedback.

    • Graphics Stack

  • Applications

  • Distributions

    • Debian Family

      • Canonical/Ubuntu

        • Canonical To Sue Apple?

          It will be interesting to see if Canonical will defend the Launchpad trademark and join the “everybody is suing everybody” club. And if so, will Apple sue back like they always do?

        • Using Karma As A Deterrent

          Wouldn’t it be fun if there was a karma element to court decisions? Based on the principle of “do unto others what you will have others do unto you”. Apple announced a new feature the other day called Launchpad. Launchpad is a registered trademark of Canonical, the company behind Ubuntu Linux.

          As I understand it; being a trademark, they don’t have any choice but to defend it if they want to keep it. So how would the karma element come into play?

          Apple have a track record of just naming their products or services whatever they like, regardless if the name is already in use, or by whom. If it gets down to a court case, it’s always settled and Apple just buy off the complaints. Many of the iNames weren’t Apple’s before Apple decided to use them. They also viciously attack any names even remotely resembling one of their own. A portable scoop for campers to bury their shit while camping was sued for the name iPood, because the name was too similar.

        • Ubuntu-Rescue-Remix is one of ten essential Linux Admin Tools
        • Cloud on Cloud, UEC on EC2

          So you wanted to play with Ubuntu Enterprise Cloud (UEC), but didn’t have a couple of machines to play with ? Want to start a UEC instance right now, no problem. You can use an Amazon EC2 server instance as your base server to install and run UEC on! Of course the EC2 instance is itself a virtual machine, thus running a VM inside that would require nested virtualization which AFAIK wouldn’t work over EC2. The trick here is that we switch UEC’s hypervisor temporarily to be qemu. Of course this won’t win any performance competitions, in fact it’d be quite slow in production, but for playing, it fits the bill just fine.

        • UDS-N Call for participation

          The Ubuntu Developer Summit (UDS) is the event in which the Ubuntu community discusses and plans the upcoming Ubuntu release. UDS Natty begins Monday, October 25th (this monday) outside of Orlando, FL, USA. If you’re in the Orlando area, this event is free, and open to anyone.

        • Flavours and Variants

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Phones

      • Android

        • Gingerbread man signals pending announcement of Android 2.3

          It’s that time again. Another giant treat arrived at the Googleplex today, which means a new version of Android is just around the corner. A video was just uploaded to the Android Developers YouTube account which shows a giant Gingerbread man joining his friends FroYo, Eclair, Donut, and Cupcake.

          As it was pointed out today, Gingerbread will likely become Android 2.3 and Honeycomb is expected to become Android 3.0 when it hits tablets next year. If history repeats itself we could have an official announcement on Android 2.3 features sometime next week. The FroYo statue appeared just one week before Google I/O where Android 2.2 was unveiled.

        • What to Expect from Internet-Enabled Televisions

Free Software/Open Source

  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • Web Browser Supports Time Travel

        For those who use the Mozilla Firefox browser, you now have the option to time travel through the web. MementoFox is a free extension that users can add-on to their browsers.

  • Oracle

    • End of File

      In 1997, I decided to come join the kernel team at Sun Microsystems because I was eager to work on Solaris– the best operating system on the planet. I was very privileged to work on some incredible technology over many years with some of the most talented engineers in the industry. Our work culminated in Solaris 10, the most innovative release of Solaris ever to that point, and what I think will be remembered for all time as a huge leap in operating system technology and the idea of what an OS can do.

      [...]

      I am resigning because my effort on behalf of my team to bring ZFS Storage to maturity and to success and a strong position at its new company in a real storage org is now done: we made it. From outside, as a fan, I will be waiting eagerly to see what the team will accomplish next.

    • Calif. Judge Certifies Class of Oracle Employees in Wage-and-Hour Suit

      An Alameda County, Calif., judge late last week certified a class of an estimated 3,000 Oracle Corp. employees who allege that they were misclassified as exempt and deprived of overtime pay.

    • Dear Oracle, Get a Clue
    • SAP asks for gag order in legal battle with Oracle
  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

  • Openness/Sharing

    • Open Data

      • Windsor and Maidenhead publishes linked spending data online

        The Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead has staked a claim as the first local authority in the UK to publish open and linked data, in support of financial transparency.

        In April, local councils were asked by the Department of Communites and Local Government to reveal details of supplier spending over £500, and then have this same information published to the internet by January 2011. It is a requirement for all local councils to publish details of their spending in an open, CSV file format on a monthly basis from January next year.

  • ODF

    • KLISS: Author/edit sub-systems in legislative environments

      ODT was chosen as it presented the best trade off when all the competing requirements of an author/edit subsystem for legislatures were analyzed. A discussion of the issues on the table when this selection was made are listed here. To that list I would also add that ODT is, to my knowledge, without IP encumberments. Also, the interplay between content and presentation is so important in this domain that it is vital to have free and unfettered access to the rendering algorithms in order to feel fully in possession of the semantics of the documents. I’m not saying that a large corpus of C++ is readily understandable at a deep level but I take great comfort in knowing that I can, in principle, know everything there is to know about how my system has rendered the law by inspecting the rendering algorithms in OpenOffice.

      Next up, long term preservation and authentication of legal materials in KLISS.

    • Here there be Dragons

      Microsoft Write developed into Word and became the world’s most-used word processor. Those that chose a different one could always open and save documents in the almost universal doc format. Most now use ODF, a free-to-use, universal standard devised to guarantee long-term access to data without legal or technical barriers. The data storage is far more sophisticated than earlier formats and the resulting files automatically ZIP compressed. Of course, Microsoft bludgeoned a new ‘standard’ into existence, their semi-proprietary Open XML or docx format.

      My colleagues can be reasonably sure they can open any document made in just about any version of Word currently running, including ODF files. Except that is their new ’standard’ the dreaded docx. Installing their free converters (how many times have I had to do that?) doesn’t necessarily mean the converted docx will look remotely like the original Unlike documents saved as RTF or ODF.

Leftovers

  • Fallacy Debunking: Successful New Business Model Examples Are The ‘Exception’

    I’ve been meaning to start to put together a series of posts that debunk the common “criticisms” we get that are all too often based on logical fallacies. I end up spending way too much time in the comments responding to people posting those same logical fallacies over and over again, and it would be nice to be able to point to posts that “answer” the complaints quickly. I’m still not sure if I’ll ever really get around to it, but sometimes someone else does such a nice job of it, that I might as well highlight it with a post here.

  • Science

    • Scientists: Usable Water Found in Moon Crater

      There’s more water on the moon than on certain places on Earth.

      That’s the conclusion of many scientists who have spent the past year analyzing data from NASA’s LCROSS spacecraft, the Lunar Crater Observation and Sensing Satellite, which was intentionally crashed into the south polar region of the moon.

  • Defence/Police/Aggression

    • The New York Times Torture Euphemism Generator!

      Reading the NYT’s stories about the Iraq War logs, I was struck by how it could get through such gruesome descriptions — fingers chopped off, chemicals splashed on prisoners — without using the word ‘torture.’ For some reason the word is unavailable when it is literally meaningful, yet is readily tossed around for laughs in contexts where it means nothing at all. It turns out the NYT has a reputation for studiously avoiding the word, to the point of using bizarre bureaucratic alternatives.

    • Why hasn’t the US government crushed Wikileaks? Why hasn’t the US crushed Wikileaks?

      So, Wikileaks has done it again. The largest military data leak in history has revealed grisly truths about the Iraq war that the US and Iraqi governments would surely prefer had never been widely known.

      It was clear that some serious evidence against the US was coming when almost a week ago The Pentagon urged news organisations not to publish the data. As news organisations around the world that had been analysing the war records for weeks released their reports a few hours ago, the US government condemned Wikileaks, saying they “Threatened national security”.

    • US Court Bans Use of Encryption

      On the question of encryption for email, it goes back to the phrase: “shall not use a computer that contains”. It seems to me he can have his email encrypted unknowingly (e.g. as part of a service). More to the point the court should have been more clear with their term “use”. They could have qualified it with terms like “inappropriate”, “malicious”, “harmful”, etc. but instead their terms seem overly broad in leaving it open to ANY and ALL forms of use.

  • Finance

    • Vodafone given $2.5bn Indian tax bill deadline

      Indian tax authorities have given Vodafone 30 days to pay a 112bn rupee ($2.5bn, £1.6bn) tax bill, as part of an ongoing tax dispute.

      The formal demand relates to the mobile phone company’s 2007 purchase of the Indian telephone assets of Hong Kong conglomerate Hutchison Whampoa.

    • Health Insurance Scam Alleged in California

      The HealthMarkets group of insurance companies uses deceptive and illegal methods to sell “junk insurance,” hiding their policies’ many “exclusions and limitations” behind jargon and double-talk, leaving sick policyholders without coverage, the Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office says. Prosecutors say co-defendants the Blackstone Group and Goldman Sachs bought the companies knowing that they “sell junk insurance products by whatever means it took.”

    • In Clearing Bayou, Quagmire for Goldman

      “Did Sam Israel come to the dinner? Has Bayou ramped it up yet?” asked a top Goldman Sachs executive in a 2004 e-mail.

      The executive, Duncan L. Niederauer, now head of the New York Stock Exchange, was writing to make sure that Goldman would keep the business of Samuel Israel III, whose hedge fund, the Bayou Group, was paying the firm often millions of dollars in fees a year to clear its trades.

      The next year, Bayou collapsed amid fraud investigations. Mr. Israel would later be convicted of defrauding investors of hundreds of millions of dollars and was sentenced to 22 years in prison.

      Bayou’s unsecured creditors filed an arbitration contending that Goldman knew for several years that the Connecticut hedge fund was hemorrhaging money even when it was claiming impressive returns.

      Now, newly unsealed court documents — including Goldman e-mail and internal reports — portray a firm that at times seemed to turn a blind eye to its own internal concerns about Bayou as it raked in fees from the hedge fund.

      During the arbitration, Goldman denied allegations it had ignored signs of wrongdoing. “We have asked the court to review the arbitration panel’s decision and believe it is inappropriate to comment.”

      Through a spokesman, Mr. Niederauer declined to comment.

    • Open Letter To The SEC’s Worthless Enforcement Division

      I have a question. Why does the SEC allow high frequency traders/co-location traders/etc., to front run retail orders every day in almost every security? When I say front run, I mean the practice of utilizing sub-penny orders whereby these so called traders step in front of real bids and offers by 1/100th of a penny to get the trade done, knowing there’s a bid or offer right behind them. This has happened to me at least fifty times in the last year. It is particularly a problem on illiquid issues in which the sub-penny order that front runs my orders may be the only business done at that level. And so my order just sits there and never gets filled.

    • Regulators shut down 7 banks

      Bank regulators closed seven banks Friday, bringing the total of number of bank failures for the year to 139, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation said.

      Friday marked the largest number of banks closed since July 23, when the FDIC also closed seven banks, according to the FDIC’s website.

      The closed banks are the First Arizona Savings in Scottsdale, Arizona; First Bank of Jacksonville, Jacksonville, Florida; The First National Bank of Barnesville, in Barnesville, Georgia; First Suburban National Bank in Maywood, Illinois; The Gordon Bank in Gordon, Georgia; Hillcrest Bank in Overland Park, Kansas; and Progress Bank of Florida in Tampa, Florida.

    • Proposed S.3898 Amendment to the Electronic Fund Transfer Act Would Shift Risk of Loss to Banks

      Just a step below widows and orphans on the sympathy scale, at least when it comes to ripoffs and theft, sit school districts, boards and local municipalities. And in a era of tight budgets, when school districts are robbed of tax monies from halfway around the world via ACH/wire fraud, state and federal politicians take notice. After the Duanesburg Central School District in upstate New York, a district with 1,000 students and an annual budget of approximately $15 million, suffered a brazen cybertheft of $3 million in December 2009, which eventually left the school district potentially on the hook for over $400K of un-recovered funds (details about the Duanesburg cybertheft here and here and here), the District approached State officials on the issue (here) and then federal representatives, including Senator Schumer.

    • Foreclosure Fraud For Dummies, 2: What is a Note, and Why is it So Important?

      The SEIU has a campaign: Where’s the Note? Demand to see your mortgage note. It’s worth checking out. But first, what is this note? And why would its existence be important to struggling homeowners, homeowners in foreclosure, and investors in mortgage backed securities?

    • Washington Firms Prepare for Boom in Foreclosure Work

      Washington law firms are seeing an uptick in work thanks to the recent furor over mortgage companies’ foreclosure practices. And they’re not expecting it to drop off anytime soon.

      To keep up with demand, K&L Gates has launched a U.S. foreclosure task force designed to aid clients in addressing questions related to potential lawsuits, hearings and foreclosure moratoriums.

    • Niche Lawyers Spawned Housing Fracas

      The paperwork mess muddying home foreclosures erupted last month. But the legal strategy behind it traces to a lawyer’s gambit in 2006 that has helped keep one couple in their home six years beyond their last mortgage payment.

    • Big Problem for Banks: Due Process

      Earlier this week, Bank of America, the nation’s largest consumer bank, reported its third-quarter earnings. It was a very good quarter; putting aside an accounting charge — a very large, $10.4 billion accounting charge, admittedly — the bank reported $3.1 billion in profits. It was the third consecutive quarter that Bank of America had earned more than $3 billion.

      [...]

      The prospect of a second legal assault is more recent. Shortly before the earnings call, Bank of America received a letter from a lawyer representing eight powerful institutional investors, including BlackRock, Pimco and — most amazing of all — the New York Federal Reserve. The letter was a not-so-veiled threat to sue the bank unless it agrees to buy back billions of dollars worth of loans that are in securitized mortgage bonds the investors own.

      Mainly, they are saying that Bank of America was servicing loans in these bonds that the bank knew violated the underwriting standards that the investors had been led to believe the bank was conforming to. What’s more, they said, the bank had never come clean about all the bad loans, as it was required to do. Therefore, say the investors, the bank has a contractual obligation to buy back the bad loans.

    • Homeowners Win Fights Over Mistaken Foreclosures

      Magaly Cervantes and Julio Bermudez started this week in tears. But they ended the week in celebration.

      I met the couple on Tuesday when I visited the Dade County Courthouse to observe the foreclosure court proceedings. The court heard dozens of of cases that day, but Ms. Cervantes stood out immediately: Her eyes were red and puffy from several days of crying.

    • In Goldman, Sachs We Trust \

      One method of increasing the number of stocks, relatively new in the U.S., was the creation of the investment trust. Such companies did not really produce anything or foster new enterprises; instead, they “merely arranged that people could own stock in old companies through the medium of new ones”; that is, the trust’s sole purpose was to invest its funds in the stocks of other companies. The problem, however, was that there was often no relation to the amount of money invested in the trust to the amount of money the trust invested, in turn, in stocks. “The difference,” Galbraith writes, “went into the call market, real estate, or the pockets of the promoters.”

      The investment trusts succeeded largely because the “product” they sold to the average trader was expertise: “One might make money investing directly in Radio, J. I. Case, or Montgomery Ward, but how much safer and wiser to let it be accomplished by the men of peculiar knowledge, and wisdom.” And the trusts were not really new companies; instead, most of them were sponsored by existing companies—for example, J.P. Morgan was behind the investment trust United Corporation. Furthermore, it almost goes without saying, investment trusts would sponsor investment trusts that would, in turn sponsor investment trusts; each of these companies issuing stocks that they would often sell to each other or to other investment trusts. Many of these companies learned quickly that through the “the miracle of leverage” (the degree to which borrowed money is used), they could “swing a second and larger [trust] which enhanced the gains and made possible a third and still bigger trust.”

  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

    • Top state court drops mall’s free speech challenge

      The state Supreme Court rejected a shopping mall’s challenge Wednesday to a ruling that allows people at the mall – a pastor, in this case – to approach strangers and talk about subjects other than shopping.

      The court denied review of an appellate decision written by its chief-justice nominee, Tani Cantil-Sakauye, who found the mall’s restrictions violated free-speech rights. Justices Marvin Baxter and Ming Chin voted to hear the case, two short of the majority needed for review.

    • Virginia Thomas’ group backs off on calling healthcare law unconstitutional

      A conservative group founded by Virginia Thomas, the wife of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas, removed references to the “unconstitutional” healthcare law from its website on Thursday and blamed staff errors for statements indicating the group believed the law should be struck down.

      “Liberty Central assiduously avoids taking a position on the constitutionality of this, and other issues, and will continue to do so in the future,” said Sarah Field, the group’s chief operating officer.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • Debt collectors may join antipiracy fight

        First it was the lawyers. Then it was the politicians. Now debt collectors may be coming after people accused of film piracy, even before they have their day in court.

      • ACS:Law Still Sending Out Letters, Recipients Not Giving In

        On September 24, 2010, at approximately 10 AM EST, the root directory of the ACS:Law website was exposed. Among the files publicly available was a backup of the site, which was subsequently downloaded by hundreds of curious visitors. Within this backup file was an email database of ACS:Law, containing months worth of all kinds of correspondence between ACS:Law and suspected file-sharers, ISPs, interoffice memos, and personal emails. It has proven to be a treasure-trove of information, providing valuable intelligence on just how weak the copyright trolling business is.

      • ACTA

        • Is the US going to get a free pass in ACTA?

          In the Plenary debate on ACTA on October 20, 2010, the Commission repeated “ACTA will not change the EU acquis”. One day later, the Swedish minister of Justice said ACTA will require changes in Swedish law, increasing the powers of the police to act on its own initiative to enforce intellectual property rights.

          So how can this be true? First you say no changes in EU law, then law in Europe changes??? Well, the EU acquis is not the same as Swedish law, EU directives must be passed by the Swedish Parliament. So the Commission gets away with the “don’t worry”-promises over here in Europe.

Clip of the Day

Linux tutorial. Installing a .deb application on a Slackware based system example Yuuguu.


Credit: TinyOgg

10.23.10

Links 23/10/2010: Wiimote on GNU/Linux, Mint Raves

Posted in News Roundup at 6:51 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

  • [CiviCRM:] Amnesty International

    CivicActions has worked with Amnesty International since 2007 both on their Drupal based website, Amnesty.org and their CiviCRM installation. We first implemented version 1.8 with Drupal 5 and earlier this year upgraded the website to Drupal 6 and CiviCRM to version 3.1, they are now running version 3.2.x.

  • Girl Scouts’ Digital Media Class, Day 1 & Day 2

    This evening I taught the second class session of a 9-week program to teach ~14-year old Girl Scouts how to work with digital media using free software tools. Our first class was last Friday. The classes are two-hours long, on Friday nights (these girls are dedicated!), on a weekly basis.

    [...]

    As I did with Red Hat’s earlier Inkscape class, I’m going to try to make a blog post per session to keep you updated on how the class is going, and hopefully to also be a resource to other folks who might be interested in teaching a similar class. I’d like to document any issues we run into and the solutions we come up with as well as the successes we stumble upon to that end.

  • Open Source Skills: The Road to Riches?

    Open source software occupies half of the list. This is very promising for individuals who focus on short-term and project-based work.

    Although, some open source technologies, like Linux and Apache Tomcat, have become so prolific they are now mainstream, most will not. Enthusiasts argue all technologies start as the technology newcomer trying to win converts from a well-established leader. Java was in this position with C++ nearly a decade ago.

  • Web Browsers

  • SaaS

    • Open-Source Vendor Battles VMware Lock-in No One Else Sees

      Open-source developer Cloud.com announced this morning it is now possible to run Microsoft’s hypervisor with an open-source cloud-computing platform in order to combat the homogeneity and vendor lock-in that would go along with cloud solutions from leading virtualization vendor VMware.

      Cloud.com Chief Marketing Officer Peder Ulander said the company started work on an abstraction layer that would allow Hyper-V to work with the OpenStack cloud platform at the request of a user who was concerned that VMware’s vCloud platform would be too limiting for a large corporate IT operation.

  • Oracle

    • Leaving the OpenOffice.org project

      Today is a special day. I feel both sad and relieved, happy and somewhat disgusted. I have officially resigned from all my duties, roles and positions inside the OpenOffice.org project. My resignation is effective immediately and I am leaving the project. I will now be contributing to the Document Foundation, while of course continuing to work at Ars Aperta and at the OASIS as a member of its Board of Director, eGov Steering Committee and ODF Committees.

    • To: JCP Executive Committee Members
    • FireFox FireOffice

      So, I was thinking about this, maybe we need to port openoffice as a firefox plugin, fireoffice. To use firefox as the platform and enable a simple office that runs in the browser.

  • Education

  • Semi-Open Source

    • Alfresco drops LGPL’d Hibernate for iBatis

      He says that this was the “primary reason” for removing Hibernate and would allow the company “more freedom and flexibility to make some decisions”. Once LGPL’d jBPM has been replaced with Activiti, there will be no LGPL components in Alfresco’s ECM platform.

  • BSD

    • FreeBSD Will Pay For Some KMS & GEM Love

      Chris Wilson of Intel back in July had written a branch of the Intel X.Org display driver (xf86-video-intel) that added back user-space mode-setting support to their open-source driver that did not need the Graphics Execution Manager (GEM) within the kernel to function. This code was previously stripped away from the driver previously since KMS+GEM is the future they wanted to head in, but for those with vintage Intel i8xx-era graphics hardware using these newer code paths frequently resulted in lock-ups and other problems. Rather than trying to solve the actual problem at hand of GEM and KMS for this old hardware, the easier solution was viewed to just add back non-GEM UMS support.

  • Government

    • End lock-in by suppliers says Government CIO

      EU procurement rules say that public sector buyers cannot specify an ICT product or brand. That means the big suppliers, usually systems integrators, select the products, the brands, and the architecture.

  • Programming

    • Taco Bell Programming

      The more I write code and design systems, the more I understand that many times, you can achieve the desired functionality simply with clever reconfigurations of the basic Unix tool set. After all, functionality is an asset, but code is a liability. This is the opposite of a trend of nonsense called DevOps, where system administrators start writing unit tests and other things to help the developers warm up to them – Taco Bell Programming is about developers knowing enough about Ops (and Unix in general) so that they don’t overthink things, and arrive at simple, scalable solutions.

  • Standards/Consortia

    • W3C updates HTML5, makes math easy

      The W3C has updated its MathML standard for rendering mathematical notation on Web pages to better portray basic math symbols, as well as render mathematic symbols in more languages.

Leftovers

  • Square Enix Sends C&D To Developer Creating OpenCarmageddon

    Whatis42? writes in to let us know that Square Enix has sent a cease and desist letter to a guy who’s been developing an open source version of the game Carmageddon. Now, it’s almost certainly the case that this version does, in fact, violate the original copyrights (and potentially trademarks) of Square Enix, but should it really matter? The game is well over a decade old and not for sale anywhere anymore. The re-creation of the game appears to be a pretty cool learning experience for a developer and fans of the game.

  • Bible.com investor sues company for lack of profit
  • Chief Justice Roberts Admits He Doesn’t Read the Computer Fine Print

    Answering a student question, Roberts admitted he doesn’t usually read the computer jargon that is a condition of accessing websites, and gave another example of fine print: the literature that accompanies medications, the AP story reports.

    It has “the smallest type you can imagine and you unfold it like a map,” he said. “It is a problem,” he added, “because the legal system obviously is to blame for that.” Providing too much information defeats the purpose of disclosure, since no one reads it, he said. “What the answer is,” he said, “I don’t know.”

  • Why IPv6? Vint Cerf keeps blaming himself

    Are you struggling with or dreading the thought of IPv6?

    If so, Vint Cerf, much-decorated “Father of the Internet,” wants you to know that it’s OK to blame him. He certainly does so himself. In fact, he does so time and time and time again.

  • The incredible growth of the Internet since 2000

    It doesn’t feel like 2000 was all that long ago, does it? But on the Internet, a decade is a long time. Ten years ago we were in the era of the dot-com boom (and bust), the Web was strictly 1.0, and Google was just a baby.

  • Laurel L. Russwurm: NaNoWriMo is …

    NaNoWriMo began as a small group of people who wanted to try their hands at writing a novel, but it quickly exploded into an International Internet novel writing extravaganza. Now it is a very large group of people all over the world who want to try their hand at writing a novel. (Love that Internet!)

  • Science

    • Building a Giant Lab to Test Disasters

      The insurance industry is doing its best to create a tempest in a teapot.

    • Synthetic DNA makers warned of bioterrorism threats

      TO MAKE it harder for bioterrorists to build dangerous viruses from scratch, guidelines for firms who supply “custom DNA” are being introduced in the US.

      The US and other countries restrict who can work with certain germs, but it might be possible to build some viruses from their genes. A number of firms supply DNA sequences to order. A 2005 investigation by New Scientist raised alarms when it found that only five out of 12 of these firms in North America and Europe always screened orders for sequences that might be used in bioweapons.

    • Mass Can Be ‘Created’ Inside Graphene, Say Physicists

      The amazing properties of graphene now include the ability to create mass, according to a new prediction.

  • Health/Nutrition

    • Consumers Win Important Battle Over How Health Care Reform Will Be Implemented

      The new MLR regulations might indeed cause a few inefficient health plans to either improve the way they do business or close up shop, but why is that a bad thing? Because it will “reduce choice?” One of the main objectives of reform is to reduce waste and ensure Americans get the value they deserve when they send in their premium payments every month. If the health plans that take our money but give us lousy coverage in return are forced out of the marketplace, I say good riddance, even if their departure means that the bigger and more efficient plans that offer better value pick up the customers they leave behind.

  • Security

  • Defence/Police/Aggression

    • This Week in Review: Hard news’ online value, a small but successful paywall, and the war on WikiLeaks

      Greenwald asserted that part of the reason for the government’s rhetoric is its fear of damage that could be caused by WikiLeaks future leaks, and sure enough, it’s already urging news organizations not to publish information from WikiLeaks’ Iraq documents. At The Link, Nadim Kobeissi wrote an interesting account of the battle over WikiLeaks so far, characterizing it as a struggle between the free, open ethos of the web and the highly structured, hierarchical nature of the U.S. government. “No nation has ever fought, or even imagined, a war with a nation that has no homeland and a people with no identity,” Kobeissi said.

    • WikiLeaks plans ‘major’ announcement in Europe

      The WikiLeaks website appears close to releasing what the Pentagon fears is the largest cache of secret U.S. documents in history — hundreds of thousands of intelligence reports compiled after the 2003 invasion of Iraq.

    • EXCLUSIVE: WikiLeaks Prepares Largest Intel Leak in US History with Release of 400,000 Iraq War Docs

      We speak to the nation’s most famous whistleblower, Daniel Ellsberg, who leaked the secret history of the Vietnam War in 1971, just before he heads to London to participate in the WikiLeak press conference.

    • Iraq war logs: secret files show how US ignored torture

      A grim picture of the US and Britain’s legacy in Iraq has been revealed in a massive leak of American military documents that detail torture, summary executions and war crimes.

    • Tibetan student protests spread to Beijing

      Protests by Tibetan students in western China over plans to restrict the use of their language have spread, according to state media and a campaign group.

      A source in Beijing said between 200 and 300 Tibetan students at the capital’s Central University for Nationalities held a peaceful demonstration this afternoon.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • Malarial mosquitoes turning into new species

      Two strains of the mosquito responsible for most malaria transmission in Africa are evolving into different species, meaning that techniques to control them may work on one type but not the other.

    • Tea Partiers Hold Fossil Fuel Industry’s Views on Climate Change

      Only 14 percent of Tea Party supporters believe global warming is a real environmental problem compared to 49 percent of the rest of the public, according to a New York Times/CBS News poll. Global warming skepticism is an article of faith among Tea Party adherents, some of whom say they rely on the teachings of scripture and conservative opinion leaders as sources for their information about climate science. Tea Partiers’ beliefs on global warming agree with those of the fossil fuel industry, which funds the Tea Party movement. Following in the footsteps of the tobacco industry, the fossil fuel industry has carried on a longstanding, pervasive campaign to raise doubts about global warming science and undermine policies that to address it.

    • Climate Change Doubt Is Tea Party Article of Faith

      At a candidate forum here last week, Representative Baron P. Hill, a threatened Democratic incumbent in a largely conservative southern Indiana district, was endeavoring to explain his unpopular vote for the House cap-and-trade energy bill.

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • More Action in America from the Network of Billionaires

      In the Center for Media and Democracy’s break-through article on the American Action Network, we highlighted the resumes of the billionaires, corporate executives, and right-wing political operatives behind the group. Americans have a right to know more about who these guys really are, starting with AAN board member Robert Steel.

      A few weeks ago, we broke the story of the grossly misleading American Action Network attack ad accusing Wisconsin Senator Russ Feingold of creating the federal deficit. We pointed out how such claims are preposterous considering that those behind AAN and the anti-Feingold ads helped destroy the economy, and that some of AAN’s board members benefited personally from the Wall Street bailout spearheaded by the Bush Administration. The Washington, D.C.-based group, a 501(c) organization that receives anonymous corporate funding, has already spent $750,000 attacking Senator Feingold in television ads. Now, AAN is at it again, airing another misleading attack ad making similar claims.

    • James Bopp’s Committee for Half-Truths in Politics

      But many do not know that one man is particularly responsible for Citizens United and other challenges to fair election rules, and that his ironically-named “Committee for Truth in Politics” is one of the many groups fronting corporate dollars while pretending to be just like ordinary folk.

  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

    • Take a stand for your freedom on the internet
    • What is Activism?

      Of course, you can’t always believe what you read. Just because something is in print does not necessarily mean it is true or accurate, whether in a book, a newspaper or a web page. Wikipedia is certainly in error in conflating “violent revolutionary activities” with Malcolm X, who was himself non-violent like the majority of activists. It was only after Malcolm X was assasinated that his followers turned to “violent revolutionary activities.”

      I’ve never met Byron Sonne, and only heard about him recently. The publication ban means what I know about it is limited to what has already been published. Which may or may not be true. Still, there is enough there in the public record to cause me concern, which is why I’ve written a couple of blog posts about it.

    • Police Refuse To Speak On Camera After Dropping ALL Charges On More Than 100 G20 Protesters
    • Networks Block Web Programs From Being Viewed on Google TV

      ABC, CBS and NBC are blocking TV programming on their websites from being viewable on Google Inc.’s new Web-TV service, exposing the rift that remains between the technology giant and some of the media companies it wants to supply content for its new products.

    • NDP PUSHES FOR FAIR TRADE AND TRANSPARENCY IN EU DEAL

      New Democrat International Trade Critic Peter Julian is criticizing the Harper government’s lack of transparency surrounding the latest round of trade talks on a Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) between Canada and the EU.

    • Creating stronger privacy controls inside Google

      In May we announced that we had mistakenly collected unencrypted WiFi payload data (information sent over networks) using our Street View cars. We work hard at Google to earn your trust, and we’re acutely aware that we failed badly here. So we’ve spent the past several months looking at how to strengthen our internal privacy and security practices, as well as talking to external regulators globally about possible improvements to our policies. Here’s a summary of the changes we’re now making.

    • Tony McNulty and civil liberties

      There was a time in the summer of 2008 when one could barely turn on the television without seeing former Home Office Minister Tony McNulty’s sturdy defences of the Labour Party’s approach to law and order. A stronger supporter of ID cards and ninety day incarceration it was impossible to find.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality/DRM

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • China pledges to crack down on pirated software

      Citing comments made at a State Council meeting at which Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao presided, the Xinhua News Agency reported this week that the goal is to clamp down on both the import and export of phony software, DVDs, publications, and other products that violate trademarks and patents.

    • Statement of the Holy See at the WIPO

      On the part of rich countries there is excessive zeal for protecting knowledge through an unduly rigid assertion of the right to intellectual property, especially in the field of health care. At the same time, in some poor countries, cultural models and social norms of behaviour persist which hinder the process of development.”

    • The Case for Flexibility in Implementing the WIPO Internet Treaties
    • Rethinking Intellectual Property: History, Theory, and Economics

      Those already convinced by the general argument against IP thus have much to learn in this course, which will deepen and extend their understanding of not only IP theory but also libertarian theory and economics. The course is also ideal for those who are on the fence, or who are confused, about IP; no intellectual conformity is required. Libertarians who think there are good arguments for IP are also welcome — at the least, they can test their arguments against the best we critics have to offer, and perhaps strengthen, modify, or deepen their own views about the nature of ideas, government, and property rights.

    • Copyrights

      • RIAA, Chamber Of Commerce: Censorship Via COICA Is Okay, Because Other Countries Censor Too

        So it’s okay for the US government to censor the web, because other countries censor as well? I recognize that their argument is that this won’t change how other countries view censorship, but even that’s wrong. The US is pressuring other countries not to censor the web by claiming a moral high ground. It seems particularly hypocritical to undermine that moral high ground by blatantly censoring the web as well, and then saying “but it’s okay for us, because it’s about protecting these companies.” That just makes it easy for those other countries to respond, “well, then it’s okay for us, because it’s about protecting our government/way of life/etc.”

      • Piracy domain seizure bill gains support

        Dozens of the largest content companies, including video game maker Activision, media firms NBC Universal and Viacom, and the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) and Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) endorsed the bill in a letter to the U.S. Senate. So did Major League Baseball and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

      • Piracy trumps obscurity again
      • If Google TV Has To Pay To Make Hulu Available To Viewers, Will Mozilla Have To Pay To Access Hulu Via Firefox?

        Admittedly, Hulu is apparently getting pressure from the TV companies to do these blocks, but it still makes no sense. All things like Boxee and Google TV are doing is providing a browser. As Danny notes, if I just hooked up my laptop to the same TV, I could watch Hulu just fine. Why is it a problem if it’s using a different piece of hardware? It makes no sense.

      • Message which brought hope now copyright of Chile miner

        The message that announced the trapped Chile miners were alive and well is now the copyright of the man who wrote it.

      • French Anti-Piracy Scheme’s 25,000 Daily Reports

        Three weeks after the first warning messages were sent by email to online infringers, French body HADOPI remains quiet on the process and its results.

        However, Billboard.biz has learned that rights-holders are reporting 25,000 music related copyright infringements to HADOPI every day. HADOPI was launched by the government to handle the three-strikes anti-piracy system.

      • ACTA

        • USTR’s implausible claim that ACTA Article 1.2 is an all purpose loophole, and the ramifications if true

          The October 2010 version of the ACTA text is inconsistent with several areas of U.S. law, and proposals for new laws in the areas of the reform of patent damages and access to orphaned copyrighted works. In particular, the obligations in the ACTA text do not incorporate many of the areas of limitations and exceptions to remedies found in U.S. law, and in the statutes of some other countries.

        • ACTA – outstanding issues (E-8295/2010)

          Observations:

          * The second part of her question goes to the heart of the criminal chapter. The Criminal chapter of ACTA corresponds to the proposed Criminal Enforcement Directive (“IPRED2″) under Art 83 legal base which failed to reach Council consensus. Recently the European Commission has withdrawn the IPRED2 proposal and thus terminated the IPRED2 directive process.
          * Comparison:
          ACTA Criminal Chapter: Negotiated behind closed doors by the Council Presidency with external Trade partners. Parliament(s) may ratify ACTA. No corresponding Acquis existing.
          IPRED2: Legal base Art 83 limits the extent of EU harmonisation. Ordinary Legislative Process. Full democratic scrutiny by Parliament. Adoption would make the act part of the Acquis.
          * Result: Council attempts to circumvent the new Lisbon powers of the European Parliament under Art 83 via Art 207. It is a highly sensitive constitutional question if a circumvention is permissible.
          * No Acquis for criminal enforcement of Intellectual Property Rights is available as the MEPs stress, not even a pending proposal anymore. For clarity, Acquis Communautaire = “body of law accumulated by the European Union”. Acquis is EU level law. Even an identical legal status quo in all EU member states would not constitute the Acquis. Neither does the EU competence under Art 83 qualify as Acquis unless an act is adopted under that legal base.

        • Help to debug the European Commissioner

          The list of directives above indicates what parts of the Acquis (body of adopted EU level law) would be affected by an adoption of ACTA. The Commissioner says that the Acquis won’t be affected at all, no change of the EU legal environement was required. Many civil society and industry groups claim ACTA has effects on the internet. Many Members of Parliament don’t believe the Commission because it would make ACTA pretty baseless. And ironically in other nations they tell the public the same tales, that it won’t change their law. Check the facts!

Clip of the Day

The Digital Prism Screencast – Introduction (learn more)


Credit: TinyOgg

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