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03.14.12

Links 14/3/2012: Linux 3.3 Delayed, elementaryOS 0.1

Posted in News Roundup at 4:21 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

Leftovers

  • Security

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • USDA to Serve Kids More “Pink Slime”

      A product made by grinding up connective tissue from cows and beef scraps that used to be made into dog food is too disgusting to serve at McDonald’s, Burger King or Taco Bell, which have all dropped it due to public pressure, but the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) thinks it’s fine to serve in school lunches. The USDA plans to buy seven million pounds of the “Lean Finely Textured Beef” (LFTB) from Beef Products Inc. (BPI) and serve it to school children this spring.

  • Finance

    • Wall Street’s Broken Windows

      New York City’s police strategy embraced “broken windows.” The police increased the priority with which they responded to even minor offenses that upset the community – “squeegee men,” graffiti, and street prostitution. Reported blue collar crime fell in New York City. It also fell sharply in most other cities, which did not implement “broken windows” programs, but Wilson and the NYPD got the credit and popular fame for the sharp fall in reported blue collar crime in New York City. Wilson became one of the most famous blue collar criminologists in the world.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • ACTA

        • Don’t Let the European Parliament Freeze ACTA!

          The European Parliament may be about to side with the Commission in its strategy to stall the ACTA debate, and postpone by one year or two the vote that could kill it once and for all. It is urgent that citizens contact Members of the Parliament to urge them to continue working towards a clear and strong political position, leading to the unavoidable rejection of ACTA, rather than allow these technocratic manœuvres.

        • Gotcha. Commissioner De Gucht in three strikes denial

          European Digital Rights (EDRI) sent a briefing document to the Parliament, and Mr. Kamall relayed an item raised by the organisation to the European Commission by written question. The answer of De Gucht is remarkable on multiple levels. But there is more to it. The footnote issue from the leaked documents was openly discussed by Commission staff during hearings, in fact Luc Devigne argued about it with Canadian Law Professor Michael Geist. The key caveat below is the word mandatory. Again the Commission and Council cover up the negotiations as a result of confidentiality. Here is another video from the stakeholder hearing where Margot from XS4all did a bunny test for the snake on 3strikes.

        • FOX International wants “evidence regime in favor of content provider and rights holder”

03.13.12

Links 13/3/2012: Linux 3.3 RC7, Arch Linux Turns 10

Posted in News Roundup at 4:24 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Desktop

    • Brazil and GNU/Linux

      Not to worry, though. This month, Net Applications shows that other OS had 93.84% but a year ago the share was 94.38%, a decline of 0.5% in spite of the bias. In California, the bias in business is probably 10:1 so a change of -0.5% could be -5% in reality, a serious shift for M$. The monopoly is on a short leash with government and education using GNU/Linux. In Argentina there is an active anti-trust investigation of M$’s practices. It would not take much for business usage to change dramatically if GNU/Linux is allowed to compete fairly. According to the US embassy in Argentina, “42 percent of Argentine firms use Linux on at
      least some of their computers”. Brazil should not be much different.

    • A Linux desktop and tablet user and Windows 8

      I’m a Linux user, but I kind of like Windows XP, and I can get along fine with Windows 7, but Windows 8? Argh!

    • Meet the new Windows 8

      Usually, if you say “linux” people think about a very hard to use OS. But is it true? Is Kubuntu really an OS for developers and nerds? I’m going to present “common people” Kubuntu, saying it’s the new version of Windows 8: let’s see what they think about it without any prejudice. And, since I’m a serious person, I’m filming it.
      By the way: I got the idea because KDE has been awarded as best desktop environment of the year.

    • Q4 2011 Was a Nightmare for M$

      # Philippines saw shipments down 33%.

  • Server

    • What’s the best Linux server for you?

      When it comes to clothes, I’m a normal guy. I just want to walk into a store, grab something that fits, buy it (What, try it on? Are you kidding!?), and head home. Well, that’s what I want to do. I’ve learned over the years that just because something should fit doesn’t mean that it will fit. It’s the same with Linux servers. Sure, they’re all built on the same code base and can run the same applications, but one may fit you perfectly while another may make you look like a clown.

  • Audiocasts/Shows

  • Kernel Space

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • Enesim: A Flexible, Extensible Graphics Framework

      Enesim is said to be similar to the Fog Framework and started out as a research project to optimize the Enlightenment Foundation Libraries, but then ended up becoming a project in its own right. The Enesim graphics framework supports vector and raster-based graphics, is considered highly-extensible, supports OpenCL and OpenGL renderers along with a software-based fall-back, and multi-threading support. The SVG renderer for Enesim is also said to be significantly faster than other common SVG libraries.

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC)

      • Tethered Shooting with digiKam
      • REVIEW: KDE SC 4.8.1

        Just a few days ago I upgraded KDE SC to its latest release, 4.8.1. This first dot release is very interesting in that it incorporates a significant number of fixes to elements as critical as Dolphin and KDE PIM. Now that the first round of polishing is there for KDE SC 4.8, and since I have been using it extensively for weeks, I think it is a good time to put together a review and see where KDE stands as of today. THE GOOD NEWS There are three main areas where KDE SC 4.8 shines: Stability, Performance and New Features.

    • GNOME Desktop

      • Gnome 3: conditional love

        I’ve recently spent a couple of months using Gnome 3 in Fedora and a few weeks using Gnome 2 in Debian Squeeze, Now I’m using Gnome 3 again in Debian Wheezy. Switching from the new to the old and back has given me a good idea of what I like or don’t like in Gnome 3, and what makes life easier or more difficult using it.

        Overall, I much prefer using Gnome 3, which puts me at odds with a lot of people who have written about it. What I love most is the minimalist elegance of layout. Gnome 2 just looks 20th century while Gnome 3 looks 21st.

  • Distributions

    • Arch Linux turns 10 years
    • Arch Linux turns ten years old
    • Arch Turns Ten

      It was a full decade ago that Arch Linux made its public debut. Over the weekend developers and users posted of their early experiences and brought the milestone to the forefront. However, users have been discussing just how to mark this upcoming anniversary for several months on the forum.

    • Vector Linux: Lightning fast throwback to old-school Linux

      The title can be somewhat deceiving. When you think of “Old School” you think of out of date, whimsical technology that most people only look at on occasion. Well, scrap that train of thought when applied to Vector Linux, because Vector is just as useful as nearly any modern platform. That doesn’t mean it’s for everyone — but if you long for the days when your Linux distribution didn’t eat up your resources and an installed OS contained everything you needed to get through the day, then look no further than Vector Linux 7.0 Standard Edition. You’ll wind up with an easy to use, lightweight desktop (Figure A) that is ready to perform like few other distributions.

    • Introducing the Window Maker Live CD

      Paul Seelig announced last evening, March 11th, the immediate availability for download of the Window Maker Live CD 2012-03-11 Linux operating system.

      Window Maker Live CD is a Linux distribution based on Debian Linux and the lightweight Window Maker window manager.

    • New Releases

    • Gentoo Family

      • A look at Sabayon Linux 8

        The Sabayon Linux distribution is a Gentoo-based project which attempts to provide a cutting-edge user experience which “just works”. The project provides several editions, the main ones being the GNOME, KDE, Xfce and Core flavours. Each edition is available in 32-bit and 64-bit builds so the hardest hurdle to cross is figuring out which ISO we want to download. I opted for the Xfce edition which, if you’ve been following my reviews of late, you’ll notice is becoming a bit of a trend. Recently I’ve been finding GNOME 3 too unpleasant and cumbersome to use and, while I enjoy the features of KDE, I’ll be the first to admit it’s a bit on the heavy side. More and more I’m finding Xfce provides my ideal balance of features and performance.

    • Red Hat Family

      • Fedora

        • Raspberry Pi USB Microcomputer tries Fedora Remix Distro

          The Raspberry Pi Foundation has announced that owners who managed to grab its USB microcomputer before supplies depleted can now download and install a recommended Linux distribution.

          The Raspberry Pi Fedora Remix is a distribution from software packages of the Fedora ARM project, with a “small number” of extra packs modified from Fedora versions that Fedora could not include due to licensing problems.

        • Fedora 17 New Security Feature part VII – thumbnail protection.

          John Leyden wrote an interesting article Linux vulnerable to Windows-style autorun exploits, about how security researches had discovered that Linux is potentially vulnerable to a user sticking a USB device or CDRom into a locked machine. The basic idea was that “Nautilus” would execute thumbnail drive code, to display thumbnails icons in the file browsers based on the content on the removable media, even if the machine was locked. If the thumbnail executables were vulnerabile, a cracker could use the code used to process the thumbnail images to kill the screensaver/lock.

    • Debian Family

      • My Debian Squeeze box DOESN’T spring forward

        I’m always wondering about people who forget to spring forward or fall back when daylight saving time begins or ends.

        Now I’m one of them.

        I have a 10 a.m. conference call today, and looking at the clock on my GNOME desktop in Debian Squeeze, my operating system on this laptop since late 2010, I dial into the call.

        There’s nobody there.

        Later I’m working on my test laptop, running DragonFlyBSD, on which I have the ntpd daemon running. It’s an hour ahead.

        Except that it’s not. My Debian laptop is an hour behind.

      • Derivatives

        • SkoleLinux 6.0.4 has been released
        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Has Canonical Found the Keys to the Computing Kingdom?

            “My concern is that the evolution acceleration curve for technology, specifically how users interact with the interfaces, is too steep, and Ubuntu starts running the risk of being too clever, too quick,” said Slashdot blogger yagu. “It’s hard to evangelize linux/ubuntu/favorite distro and find out users are too confused to understand and use it because every time they look, it’s different.”

          • Peeking at the Pangolin

            Among the most eagerly anticipated features, the heads-up display, makes its debut in Precise. The HUD is supposed to eventually replace the traditional menu system by guessing the command you want to issue based on the first few letters you type into a search box. In the beta version, you can call up the HUD by hitting the Alt key. In his blog, Ubuntu founder Mark Shuttleworth describes HUD as a revolutionary change in the way people will interact with their computers, but the version that comes with the 12.04 beta is a long way from that vision.

            For example, HUD is supposed to be able to search through the available application and system (indicator) menu commands and offer these as you type, but the HUD isn’t as smart as it should be. To adjust the volume settings on your computer, for instance, you ought to be able to type “volume” into the search box, but doing so produces no result whatsoever. To get to that command, you need to type the less intuitive “sound” instead and choose from four options. How this is more efficient than merely clicking on the speaker icon and adjusting the volume on a slider is beyond me. Performance was even quirkier when I tried to use the HUD to find commands in an application. It worked to a limited degree with the image-editing program Gimp, but the search itself seemed slow. To save a file, I typed “save” and the HUD went through 15 options before offering me “File > Save As” whereas I could easily have saved time by using the keyboard shortcut, CTRL-S.

          • HUD Won’t Replace Traditional Menus: Mark Shuttleworth

            When Mark Shuttleworth announced HUD, I had my worries. Unity itself needed a lot of work to be further polished. In a recent interview with Mark at MWC I asked about the worried around HUD and he explained his vision of HUD. So, let me get one thing out of our way ‘HUD is not going to replace the traditional menus’.

          • Unity fixes in newly released Midori 0.4.4

            Christian Dywan, the main developer of the open source WebKit-based browser Midori, has announced the release of the latest version of his project. Midori 0.4.4 has improvements in several areas, including better GTK+ 3 support, improved interaction with Ubuntu’s Unity menubar and other fixes.

          • Ubuntu User Survey: Who’s Behind the Curtain?

            Who runs Ubuntu? Where, why and how? That’s a question lots of people — including probably even Canonical employees — would like to be able to answer better. Toward this end, a survey of general Ubuntu users is underway. Here’s the scoop.

            Last month, Canonical completed a survey of Ubuntu server users that revealed quite a bit of interesting information — from the apparently hobbyist nature of many Ubuntu server deployments to the ways people are and aren’t currently deploying Ubuntu servers in the cloud.

          • New, shiny, Unity 5.6 released!

            Phew! it’s been a long road to release the next unity, but I’m more than happy to finally announce the release of 5.6. Unity components (dee, libunity, bamf, lenses, nux) and unity itself, plus some compiz snapshots (post 0.9.7.0) are part of this release. The packages are currently building on the official builders and should be soon available to you.

            No particular new feature apart from better ibus support are part of it, plus a tons of bug fixes and some miscelleanous improvements: – Daniel van Vungt landed a patch in compiz that enhances its performance for more than 51%! When you test it, I can ensure you feel a real noticeable difference (in particular on older machines, like mine). – The alt tap false positive revealing the HUD is now part of the past. We know this one was annoying people, I can only tell you it’s been technically challenging ;). This has been a rocking combined effort in compiz/unity sides. – the file lens can now find files that were never opened before.

          • Unsettings- A graphical configuration tool for Unity
          • Mark Shuttleworth Weighs In On Ubuntu 12.04
          • Ubuntu For Android Can Disrupt The Enterprise Market

            Ubuntu for Android has become extremely popular among enthusiasts. There was a lot of excitement around Ubuntu for Android during the Mobile World Congress. I was at the booth for coverage and I saw how people were excited about it. Ubuntu for Android, as I understand after talking to Mark Shuttleworth, is much more than yet another prototype. It’s much more than just another Canonical project. It is undoubtedly a Linux geek’s toy, but it is a real business device which, if executed well by Canonical, can disrupt the enterprise market.

          • Interview: Jo-Erlend Schinstad

            Jo-Erlend Schinstad is one of the most active and dedicated members of the Ubuntu community who tries to clear confusion around Ubuntu related issues. He also takes pain in explaining technologies, how it works and how it can be improved. Jo was recently appointed as a member of EMEA and it was a great opportunity to talk to Jo-Erlend about his engagement with the free software community, especially Ubuntu.

          • Ubuntu 12.04 Just Got Faster

            Ubuntu 12.04 is currently in its beta and updates are rolling everyday to remove existing bugs and polish the system for the final release on April 26th. However, today I received almost 100 updates which is huge considering I update my system every few hours (call me paranoid). Notables updates have been made to Compiz and Unity. Most of the updates however are performance improvements rather than visual tweaks. Still, I will try to list them all to the best of my knowledge.

          • Ubuntu disables app logging for privacy
  • Devices/Embedded

Free Software/Open Source

Leftovers

  • Security

    • W.H. tries cyber scare demo

      The White House orchestrated a simulated cyberattack on New York City’s power supply during a summer heat wave late Wednesday to illustrate not only potential human and economic casualties, but to tee up support for Senate passage of a sweeping cybersecurity bill.

      During a classified briefing in the Office of Senate Security, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano and White House counterterrorism adviser John Brennan showed lawmakers how a hacker could breach control systems of the city’s electric system and trigger a ripple effect throughout the population and private sector, according to a source familiar with the scenario.

      “The fact that we could be subject to a catastrophic attack under the right circumstances and we now know some of the things that would help us to protect against such an attack, that’s why it’s important now for the Congress to take this up,” Napolitano said in an interview with POLITICO.

  • Defence/Police/Aggression

    • US Soldiers Should Avoid Geotagging On Facebook

      It won’t be a surprise to see that even the smartest users behave in the most stupid manner when on Facebook. They give out their location without even realizing what they are doing. It becomes increasingly dangerous when members of US army start giving out their location in different ways.

      A deployed service member’s situational awareness includes the world of social media. If a Soldier uploads a photo taken on his or her smartphone to Facebook, they could broadcast the exact location of their unit, said Steve Warren, deputy G2 for the Maneuver Center of Excellence, or MCoE.

  • Cablegate

  • Finance

    • MF Global: Mark Melin Interviews Haar And Koutoulas On What Really Happened

      This soft censorship of the financial news by the visual and print media in the States is nothing new. I have spoken to a number of people who find themselves and their viewpoints shut out of the discussions on financial and economic issues in the US. I have seen this happen repeatedly in the area of stock and metals market abuses and their reforms.

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • Why Did PhRMA Spend $356K on ALEC in Wisconsin?

      The pharmaceutical drug lobby PhRMA gave $356,075 to the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) “scholarship fund” in 2010, but listed the recipient’s address at a lobbying firm steps away from the Wisconsin State Capitol, rather than ALEC’s Washington, D.C. offices, according to filings with the Internal Revenue Service. The PhRMA contribution is leading to calls for greater transparency about how the ALEC scholarship fund operates.

      In its 2010 IRS filings, the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, better known as PhRMA, listed a $356,075 contribution to the “ALEC Scholarship Fund.” That fund pays for flights and hotels for state legislators to attend ALEC conferences in places like New Orleans or Florida.

  • Censorship

    • Uncle Sam: If It Ends in .Com, It’s .Seizable

      When U.S. authorities shuttered sports-wagering site Bodog.com last week, it raised eyebrows across the net because the domain name was registered with a Canadian company, ostensibly putting it beyond the reach of the U.S. government. Working around that, the feds went directly to VeriSign, a U.S.-based internet backbone company that has the contract to manage the coveted .com and other “generic” top-level domains.

    • Tell PayPal: Don’t Censor Books

      PayPal, which plays a dominant role in processing online sales, has taken full advantage of the vast and open nature of the Internet for commercial purposes, but is now holding free speech hostage by clamping down on sales of certain types of erotica. As organizations and individuals concerned with intellectual and artistic freedom and a free Internet, we strongly object to PayPal functioning as an enforcer of public morality and inhibiting the right to buy and sell constitutionally protected material.

      Recently, PayPal gave online publishers and booksellers, including BookStrand.com, Smashwords, and eXcessica, an ultimatum: it would close their accounts and refuse to process all payments unless they removed erotic books containing descriptions of rape, incest, and bestiality. The result would severely restrict the public’s access to a wide range of legal material, could drive some companies out of business, and deprive some authors of their livelihood.

  • Civil Rights

  • Internet/Net Neutrality

    • EU Regulator Shows Operators Restrict Net Access, Deploy Intrusive Technologies

      In January, La Quadrature du Net responded to the BEREC consultation, based on the findings of the RespectMyNet platform. Although these only give a partial account of the situation, the submission presented 144 confirmed reports of breaches to Net neutrality, concerning 44 operators in more than 14 Member States.

    • Dear Parliament: Say no to the Internet Lockdown

      Canada’s politicians are set to make a decision any day, setting the course for copyright and the Internet that will last for years. Please send a message to your MP and the government by filling out the form on the right.

  • DRM

    • Penguin Pointlessly Annoys Readers With USB-Only eBooks

      Reader Jason Alcock alerts us to another example of a company taking a backwards approach to value-added services by putting artificial restrictions on their content. Apparently, while ebooks from the popular publisher Penguin are available to borrow from Kindle libraries, Penguin requires that they only be transferrable by USB, not wireless. This, in turn, means that they cannot be read with the free Kindle apps on platforms like iOS and Android, since USB transfer is only supported on the Kindle device itself.

    • Latest Calibre Update Brings KF8 Support to Linux, OSX
  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Trademarks

      • Edgar Rice Burroughs Inc. Using Trademark Law To Prevent The Use Of Public Domain Stories

        The public domain is meant to be a source of free culture for all the world to enjoy, mix and derive other works from. Unfortunately, there are many people and organizations in the world that wish to block the use of public domain material. Edgar Rice Burroughs Inc. (ERB) is one such organization. Founded in 1923, this corporation has been handling all the copyrights and other rights for the works created by the author Edgar Rice Burroughs. Amongst the rights held by the corporation are the rights to the Tarzan and John Carter of Mars characters. What makes this situation somewhat unique is the fact that only a portion of the Tarzan and John Carter books are still covered by copyright in the US. A number of the early works were published prior to 1923 when modern copyright terms of life plus 70 years went into effect. Even though the copyrights of the early works are long expired, ERB has shown that it will block the use of both characters in modern derivative works.

    • Copyrights

03.12.12

Links 12/3/2012: Debian 5.0.10 Released, Skolelinux 6.0.4 Released

Posted in News Roundup at 6:12 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Softpedia Linux Weekly, Issue 190
  • Yet another Linux story

    A big task was pending since a very long time in my todo lists. It was installing and trying out Linux. Having heard about many features and praises about Linux and programming on the LAMP stack from a few of my friends and colleagues, I decided to give it a try myself. So I went about learning and researching Linux & LAMP, formatted my hard-drive, created new partitions and installed Ubuntu 11.10 (a variety of Linux that ships with the GNOME desktop environment). The first emotion I then felt was that of regret – Why didn’t I do this earlier? Why was I focused on programming in a closed-source OS environment with bloated software, and a runtime with just two options to code – VB.NET & C#. Being enlightened about the open-source legends and milestones achieved by Linux and the secure way it handles its file-system, I couldn’t help but wonder at its marvel.

  • Linux in Saigon :-)

    I was at the bookstore last Sunday and I found my first Vietnamese language Linux book. Amazing!!!

  • How Linux is changing lives in Zambia
  • The Linux Setup – Keith Milner, Telecom Engineer

    What distribution do you run on your main desktop/laptop?

    I’m currently running Mandriva 2011 on both my desktop and my laptop. Depending on the project I’m on I can either be working at home for extended periods (as I am currently) or on the customer site. I recently spent a few months on a customer site in Malaysia, and in that case my laptop becomes my main system.

    I’ve previously dabbled with Redhat, Suse, Ubuntu and others, but I have generally been very happy with Mandriva. I have always preferred the KDE environment over GNOME. In the early days when KDE2 came out (and I was running Redhat) I used to compile the latest KDE releases to use on my system. These days things are more mission-critical and I prefer to have a supported, packaged system. Whether I change this in the future depends on Mandriva’s future.

    My laptop is actually a triple boot setup, and also has Windows XP on it. I often do a lot of hands-on work on customer’s systems and for this I find Linux simply much more productive and powerful than Windows. The only time I use Windows is when a customer project mandates the use of a particular piece of software. In practice I find this doesn’t happen often, but having WIndows allows me to support this when it does.

  • Linux Certificate Program Targets Newcomers to the OS

    Linux skills are in growing demand in today’s IT hiring landscape, and there are many ways to bolster those skills both online and off.

  • Desktop

    • Welcome to the pre-Post-PC era

      Joe Brockmeier wrote an insightful piece on ReadWrite entitled “What We Lose in a Post-PC World” that starts off with this: “Tim Cook, Ray Ozzie, and a host of others have proclaimed that we’re in a “post-PC world.” Well, not quite yet, but you can see it from here.”

      [...]

      Meanwhile, technology marches on and as evening falls on the pre-Post-PC era — which might be called the post-pre-Post-PC era by purists, opening another argumentative can of worms as a sideshow — Blender developers will actually get an Android version for tablets up and running, just proving the point that you can do it, but ignoring the important question around why you would make software to run on something that’s not built for the job.

    • “This Is Crazy. I Hate It.”
    • Dell Says Several Countries Have Triple-Digit Growth for GNU/Linux
  • Audiocasts/Shows

  • Kernel Space

    • Intel Xeon E5 Heads to Linux

      Linux server users won’t have to wait long to benefit from the new Intel Xeon E5 processor, announced earlier this week. Hardware vendors and Linux operating system vendors alike are ready to leverage Intel’s latest server chip architecture.

    • The Longterm Linux Kernel Cabal

      How do Linux kernel devs figure out which kernel will be the basis for their enterprise distros?

      The Linux kernel community is made up of lots of different developers working at different companies. But as it turns out, those companies don’t really control their own kernel roadmaps as much as they might think.

    • Linux 3.3-rc7
    • DRM Work Piling Up For The Linux 3.4 Kernel

      While it looks like there’s still another week before the Linux 3.3 kernel will be released and thus marking the merge window for the Linux 3.4 kernel opening, here’s some of the DRM graphics changes you can expect to see merged.

    • Got Privacy? Ubuntu Linux 12.04 Will Help Ensure It.
    • Graphics Stack

      • APITrace 3.0 Brings Graphics Tracing Goodness
      • Intel Preparing GLSL 1.40 Support For Mesa

        GLSL 1.40 is a requirement for OpenGL 3.1, which Intel is now attempting to support in Mesa now that they have OpenGL 3.0 / GLSL 1.30 support for their Intel Sandy Bridge and Ivy Bridge graphics driver. There’s been talk of possibly having OpenGL 3.1 in place for Mesa 8.1, which will be released this summer, and GLSL 1.40 is part of this.

      • APITrace 3.0 Brings Graphics Tracing Goodness

        APITrace was introduced in April of last year as a way to help graphics driver developers debug the graphics stack. This free software program allows for easy OpenGL API tracing regardless of driver. APITrace 2.0 was then introduced in September to support the latest OpenGL 4.2 specification and to provide other new functionality. Today the program has reached the version 3.0 milestone.

      • Radeon UVD Support Going Through Code Review

        If you have been desiring better video playback support on the open-source ATI/AMD Radeon Linux graphics stack, the days of being frustrated may be limited. There’s some code concerning UVD — the GPU’s Unified Video Decoder engine — that will be going through internal code review at AMD this coming week.

      • What’s Left For LLVMpipe Before OpenGL 3.0

        One of the Gallium3D drivers yet not fully supporting the OpenGL 3.0 specification is the LLVMpipe software rasterizer. However, if you’re curious of what’s left before this CPU-based graphics driver can handle GL3, here’s a list.

      • X.Org’s XDS2012 Will Celebrate 25 Years Of X11

        Some new details have emerged concerning the 2012 X.Org Developers’ Summit, which will take place this September and commemorate 25 years of X11.

        First of all, while it’s not been officially announced on the mailing lists or elsewhere yet, XDS2012 is expected to happen from the 19th to 21st of September. It’s been mentioned on the XDS2012 Wiki page and elsewhere and discussed for weeks, like back at FOSDEM, but I believe Egbert Eich will be sending out the formal announcement soon.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC)

      • How To Upgrade Kubuntu To KDE 4.8.1
      • KDE 3 got upower support and more
      • Desktop Freezes in 4.8.x

        The source of the problem is the fact that kded is sometimes frozen by one or more of its modules. Plasma NM < 0.9.0 used to do several synchronous calls to networkmanagement module in kded, specially to get the signal strengh of wifi access points and 3G connections. You can imagine how often wifi access points (all access points in range, even the ones you are not connected to) can trigger signal strengh… signals :-/ Yes, every often.

  • Distributions

    • Screw this, I’m going back to Windows!

      No, I’m not. Because I never left, hihihihi. The title is a clickbait…

      [...]

      Looking ahead into the misty future, I can honestly say I do not know which Linux distribution I will be running on my current and new hardware in the coming years, but I definitely know I will be using Windows. That’s the simple reality. No, let me rephrase that. I will be running Windows XP and Windows 7, as Windows 8, if rumors are all true, aims to become the new lead champion in the moronity club. Still.

    • Linux Deepin: Ubuntu-Based Linux Distribution With A Beautiful GNOME Shell Setup

      Linux Deepin is a Linux distribution based on Ubuntu that uses a highly customized GNOME Shell as the default desktop environment. It was initially created for Chinese users only, but there are now different ISO images for both Chinese and English languages.

    • BackTrack 5 Revolution 2 screen shots
    • A Healthy Front Line of FLOSS: GNU/Linux
    • The Big Board

      I have also excluded three Linux distros that appear on the Distrowatch “Top Ten” list: Arch Linux, Slackware, and CentOS. From what I’ve gathered, Arch Linux and Slackware are better suited to advanced Linux users than to newcomers; and CentOS is primarily for “enterprise” users (those setting up servers). I’ve heard many good things about all three, but they’re probably not distros for the Goodbye, Microsoft audience.

      I’ve included PC-BSD as a representative of the BSD Unix family. While I have not tried it myself, I’m told it’s the “Ubuntu of BSDs” for ease of installation and use, and it is aimed at desktop use rather than servers.

      I mentioned several lightweight distros in late 2009; some have since gone dormant or have been discontinued. (Namely FeatherLinux, SLAX, SaxenOS, BeaFanatIX, U-Lite, Fluxbuntu, and Wolvix.) The only “dormant” distro I’ve included is Damn Small Linux, which, though not updated since 2008, is still popular and useful.

    • Arch Linux Celebrates 10th Birthday

      Arch Linux is 10 years old today. Arch Linux was started by Judd Vinet in March 2002. Judd announced the release of Arch Linux 0.1 (Homer on March 11, 2002).

    • Italian Simplicity: Semplice Linux

      Just a few weeks ago, at the end of 2011, I reviewed a Linux distribution based on Ubuntu with the OpenBox window manager: SalentOS. That distribution was created by an Italian person who lives in Salento, hence the name.

      I am not sure if Italians have some extreme love of OpenBox, but very soon after that, I heard about another OpenBox-based distribution from that country. This time, though, it is based on Debian. To be precise, on the unstable branch of Debian – Sid.

    • New Releases

    • Gentoo Family

      • Sabayon Linux 8 review

        This time around, I’m reviewing Sabayon Linux 8 in its Xfce 64-bit edition. Honestly, I chose the Xfce edition because my USB stick is 2 Gigabytes, and the GNOME and KDE versions are too large to fit. But I can confirm that you can use UNetbootin to install Sabayon onto any laptop that lets you boot from a thumb drive.

        Sabayon is a distribution based on the Gentoo version of Linux. Gentoo is a long-established distribution that is one of the very few using source compilation to provide you with the software you install. While this allows you to customize your system to an unprecedented degree, it also requires the desire and the confidence to do much more “under the hood” work than most distributions expect. One of the aims of Sabayon is to make the initial installation of Gentoo painless, and they succeed in that.

    • Red Hat Family

      • “Open Source” Ideas for Nonprofits

        Open-source technology thrives by letting anybody know how it works and encouraging them to come up with new ideas and to tailor software to their own needs.

        Could your nonprofit work the same way?

        Any organization can, said Rebecca Suehle, a writer and editor at the open-source software company Red Hat, in a session today at the South by Southwest Interactive conferene.

      • interview with Jim Whitehurst

        Q. Tell me about the culture of your company.

        A. Since we were founded in the 1990s on the idea of leveraging broad open-source communities, we naturally adopted that approach in our culture long before the Facebooks of the world even existed. So we’re on the bleeding edge of what so many companies are going to face because of this whole millennial generation coming up. It just does not like this idea of hierarchy.

      • Why Enterprise Linux ?

        Last year I’ve decided to purchase a license of Red Hat Enterprise Linux (self support) to use on my home laptop. For a few years that I had not used Red Hat (or clones) for Desktop. I don’t find expensive at all the 45€’s that Red Hat charges for 1 year license, specially considering that I really don’t have to worry much about security (as the updates flow in quite nicely)…

      • Fedora

    • Debian Family

      • Updated Debian 5.0: 5.0.10 released

        The Debian project is pleased to announce the tenth and final update of its oldstable distribution Debian 5.0 (codename “lenny”). This update mainly adds corrections for security problems to the oldstable release, along with a few adjustments for serious problems. Security advisories were already published separately and are referenced where available.

        The alpha and ia64 packages from DSA 1769 are not included in this point release for technical reasons. All other security updates released during the lifetime of “lenny” that have not previously been part of a point release are included in this update.

      • Debian 5.0 Gets Final Update

        The Debian project has announced the tenth and final update of its oldstable distribution Debian 5.0 (codename ‘lenny’). This update mainly adds corrections for security problems to the oldstable release, along with a few adjustments for serious problems. Security advisories were already published separately and are referenced where available.

      • Updated Debian 5.0: 5.0.10 released

        The Debian project is pleased to announce the tenth and final update of its oldstable distribution Debian 5.0 (codename `lenny’). This update mainly adds corrections for security problems to the oldstable release,
        along with a few adjustments for serious problems. Security advisories were already published separately and are referenced where available.

      • First “Squeeze”-based Debian Edu version released

        Debian Edu (aka “Skolelinux”) is a Debian Pure Blend specifically targeted at schools and educational institutions, and provides a completely configured school network environment out of the box. It covers PXE installation, PXE booting for diskless machines, and setup for a school server, for stationary workstations, and for workstations that can be taken away from the school network. Several educational applications like Celestia, Dr. Geo, GCompris, GeoGebra, Kalzium, KGeography and Solfege are included in the default desktop setup.

      • Debian Edu interview: Nigel Barker

        Inspired by the interview series conducted by Raphael, I started a Norwegian interview series with people involved in the Debian Edu / Skolelinux community. This was so popular that I believe it is time to move to a more international audience.

        While Debian Edu and Skolelinux originated in France and Norway, and have most users in Europe, there are users all around the globe. One of those far away from me is Nigel Barker, a long time Debian Edu system administrator and contributor. It is thanks to him that Debian Edu is adjusted to work out of the box in Japan. I got him to answer a few questions, and am happy to share the response with you. :)

      • Derivatives

        • Skolelinux 6.0.4
        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Ubuntu 12.04 LTS ISO Will Still Fit on a CD
          • Take the Ubuntu User Survey 2012 Now
          • Ubuntu User Survery 2012

            Canonical the company behind Ubuntu has announced the Ubuntu User Survey 2012 Poll. The motive behind the poll is to understand how people discover, use and share Ubuntu. The poll is available in English, Spanish and Portuguese. The results of the poll will be shared with the community some time later.

            The poll takes hardly 5 minutes to fill in and basically looks into how you discovered Ubuntu, your use cases, and if whether you would recommend Ubuntu to your friends and others. This poll if answered by many would give answers to questions like the demographic usage of Ubuntu and many other questions. You can find the polls in the links below,

          • Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin Beta Review

            Every six months, we will do a review of the latest version of Ubuntu and see what features/improvement Canonical has added to the popular distro. The next version of Ubuntu – 12.04, Precise Pangolin is now available in beta and this is particularly important since it is the next Long Term Support (LTS) version. As of all LTS version, the emphasis is always on stability over new features experimentation, so it is interesting to see how the 12.04 will perform. Let’s proceed with the review.

          • Medibuntu repositories available for Ubuntu 12.04 LTS Precise Pangolin | PPA
          • Ubuntu & Linux Hardware Support: Working With OEMs Is Key

            When it comes to improving hardware support for Linux, there are two traditional strategies: The Do-It-Yourself method, by which geeks write their own device drivers, and the Beg-And-Plead approach, or asking OEMs for open-source drivers and hoping they comply. But Canonical seems to be forging a third path by actually cooperating with upstream manufacturers to bring better hardware support to Ubuntu. Here’s how, and what it means for the lives of Linux users everywhere.

          • Ubuntu 12.04 .ISO Will Remain CD Sized
          • Flavours and Variants

            • Netrunner 4.1 Review

              Netrunner is a KUbuntu based LiveDVD distribution running KDE 4.7.4 and is available in both 32 and 64 bit flavors. It takes the best of Kubuntu and adds a bit of their touch to the programs being offered. Netrunner is a distribution based for novice users of Linux.

            • The Kubuntu Commitment

              Though the KDE desktop has a few obvious advantages over Unity, Kubuntu has always played second fiddle (maybe third) to Shuttleworth’s baby, Ubuntu. While the distro has received critcism and praise in equal parts, one thing has never change. Commitment.

  • Devices/Embedded

Free Software/Open Source

  • Linux and Open-source news overview for week 10-2012
  • LastCalc Is Open Sourced
  • Open that Software

    In a nutshell, Open Source Software aims to ‘liberate’ you of the bonds enforced by proprietary software. These bonds restrict your basic rights of freedom to choose between softwares, freedom to modify current programs etc. For more details, do check out Richard Stallman on Wikipedia (Akash has done a post on him too).

  • Events

  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • Firefox 11 Stable Released

        Firefox users who cannot wait to update the stable channel of the web browser from version 10 to 11, can download the new version from the official Mozilla ftp server or third party download sites early. Please note that while it is unlikely that the final version will get replaced in last minute, it has happened in the past. It is recommended to wait for the official release announcement if Firefox is running in a productive environment, or if you do not need to have access to the new feature set introduced in the browser right away.

  • CMS

  • Healthcare

    • Skysoft Inc. adopts OpenEMR to move forward with development

      Skysoft Incorporated, and Orlando based IT Services and Software Development firm, has chosen OpenEMR as the platform to move forward with starting in 2012. Skysoft currently develops software prototypes for the United States Department of Veterans Administration. Skysoft is also developing medical prototypes in-house and will begin to integrate the OpenEMR platform with ours.

  • BSD

    • FUSE For FreeBSD Nearing Completion

      Porting FUSE to a FreeBSD kernel module has been a long-time coming. The FreeBSD FUSE kernel module port originally began as a Google Summer of Code project, but it wasn’t successful. In 2011, work on the port was restored via another year with Google Summer of Code, but at the end of the summer the FreeBSD FUSE implementation was still unstable and suffered data corruption issues. Now it seems that FreeBSD FUSE is finally getting hacked into shape and may be committed in the coming days.

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

  • Project Releases

    • Say Hello To Julia, A New LLVM-Based Project

      From the mailing list announcement, “Julia is an open source language for technical computing that strives to be in the same class of productivity as Matlab, R, python+numpy, etc., but targets the performance of C and Fortran. It is due to LLVM that julia has been able to achieve such good performance (in my opinion), with relatively little effort in a short amount of time.”

      Additional information on the Julia project is available from JuliaLang.org. “Julia is a high-level, high-performance dynamic programming language for technical computing, with syntax that is familiar to users of other technical computing environments. It provides a sophisticated compiler, distributed parallel execution, numerical accuracy, and an extensive mathematical function library. The library, mostly written in Julia itself, also integrates mature, best-of-breed C and Fortran libraries for linear algebra, random number generation, FFTs, and string processing. More libraries continue to be added over time. Julia programs are organized around defining functions, and overloading them for different combinations of argument types (which can also be user-defined).”

  • Public Services/Government

  • Openness/Sharing

  • Standards/Consortia

    • HTML5 roundup: Mozilla and Google aim to level up gaming on the Web

      Standards-based open Web technologies are increasingly capable of delivering interactive multimedia experiences; the kind that used to only be available through plugins or native applications. This trend is creating new opportunities for gaming on the Web.

      New standards are making it possible for Web applications to implement 3D graphics, handle input from gamepad peripherals, capture and process audio and video in real-time, display graphical elements in a fullscreen window, and use threading for parallelization. Support for mobile gaming has also gotten a boost from features like device orientation APIs and improved support for handling touchscreen interaction.

Leftovers

  • Microsoft goes on a charm offensive

    SOFTWARE HOUSE Microsoft has gone into some detail about some of the most obvious changes in the look and feel of the Windows 8 user interface.

    A long Microsoft blog post goes into some detail about the apparently subtle changes that are supposed to speed things up and make things easier to do in Windows 8. We are not convinced.

  • Security

    • Slow Down TSA Lynch Mob: That Naked Scanner Expose Video Is Exaggerated & Old News

      So, while I don’t agree with the TSA’s response to this video in which “Blogger Bob” somewhat angrily snaps back about how important TSA scanning is, I don’t think Corbett’s claims are that convincing and I’m surprised at how much press it’s been generating. Yes, the scanners are probably pointless, and it’s all security theater, but that doesn’t mean we should all stop thinking through the details on videos that potentially show some weaknesses in these machines.

    • Microsoft to patch Windows bug called ‘Holy Grail’ by one researcher

      Microsoft yesterday said it would ship six security updates next week, only one critical, to patch seven vulnerabilities in Windows and a pair of for-developers-only programs.

      This year’s March Patch Tuesday will feature three more updates and three more patches than the same month in 2011, but will fix fewer bugs than the March roster in each of the years 2008-2010, according to records kept by Andrew Storms, director of security operations at nCircle Security.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • OECD Gives Up the Oil, to the Developing World

      Now that global oil supply is a zero-sum game, in order for the five billion people in the Non-OECD to consume more oil they need a donation from us, here in the OECD. And as you can see, we are “happily” (recession, unemployment, lack of growth) giving up these energy sources as best we can.

  • Finance

    • Scott O’Malia, Commodity Futures Commissioner, Seeks To Upend Wall Street Reform (Updated)

      In a signal that partisan squabbling in the nation’s capital may be reaching new levels of rancor, a key Republican regulator is pursuing an unusual avenue to overturn a Wall Street reform rule issued by his own agency. Scott O’Malia, one of five commissioners who lead the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, is asking a powerful White House office that has no actual authority over the CFTC to assess his agency’s work.

      If the Office of Management and Budget were to take O’Malia up on his suggestion, it would radically change the way some federal regulations are written and severely hamper implementation of a host of rules mandated by the 2010 Dodd-Frank Act.

    • The Financial Crisis And Shrek’s Onion Of Fraud

      In the last couple of weeks I’ve been pushing foreclosure fraud. Well, not pushing the fraud but rather arguing that foreclosure is fraud. It has to be. If a mortgage was registered at MERS, then the chain of title was broken. Broken chains mean the bank cannot foreclose. But that was MERS’s business model, and so most mortgages are “infected”. Still, there’s a lot more to it than that.

  • Censorship

    • Tesla libel suit against Top Gear fails again

      Tesla and the company’s lawyers are nothing if not determined. After a judge smacked down the electric vehicle manufacturer’s libel suit against the BBC and Top Gear for comments made about the range of the Tesla Roadster, the automaker rallied with a second, amended lawsuit. It didn’t take long for the the same judge to nix the new case, too, saying the amendment was “not capable of being defamatory at all, or, if it is, it is not capable of being a sufficiently serious defamatory meaning to constitute a real and substantial tort.”

    • Canadians To Prime Minister: Don’t Censor Our Scientists

      One of the most fundamentally insane things about government and politics is the fact that evidence-based policy is frequently not the norm. It should be common sense that you don’t create new laws and regulations without actual evidence that they will work, or even clear evidence on the scope of the problem they aim to solve. But as we know, things don’t really work that way—it’s a lot easier for politicians and legislators to make their push based on emotion and public perception.

    • Free Canada’s scientists to communicate with the public

      A scientist’s duty is to science. Researchers must be able to share their findings, and discuss their published work with peers, journalists and the public in a timely manner.

    • EFF Argues That Automated Bogus DMCA Takedowns Violate The Law And Are Subject To Sanctions
  • DRM

  • Intellectual Monopolies

03.09.12

Links 9/3/2012: Linux Mint 12 LXDE is Out, Nokia Rushes Back to Linux-based Operating System

Posted in News Roundup at 6:26 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Gartner Believes the World Owes Wintel A Living

    Gartner has predicted that 2012 will be another slow year for Wintel but 2013 will be better. They seem to feel ARM and */Linux will have no traction. The same forces that Gartner believes will give Wintel traction will also give */Linux on ARM greater traction. In fact there is nothing preventing */Linux from running on Intel/x86 systems…

  • IBM streams Linux and Windows desktop through USB stick
  • Server

    • NOAA and GNU/Linux Predict the Weather

      All IT should do the same. Look at what IT costs your organization and what performance you get or want to get in the future. GNU/Linux will give whatever performance you want at a lower price for licensing, re-re-reboots, slowing down, pleasing M$ with absurd restrictions in the EULA or authentication, and complexity. I recommend Debian GNU/Linux.

  • Kernel Space

    • Linux Foundation Welcomes Nvidia, 3 Other New Members

      In a brief statement, Nvidia said that its membership in the Linux Foundation will enable it to collaborate better with “the organizations and individuals instrumental in shaping the future of Linux, enabling a great experience for users and developers of Linux.”

    • Kernel Log: Coming in 3.3 (Part 4) – Drivers
    • Fluendo Joins The Linux Foundation

      Fluendo, the leading multimedia software development company and GStreamer expert, announced today that it has joined The Linux Foundation, the nonprofit organization dedicated to accelerating the growth of Linux.

    • Linux creator Torvalds slams OpenSUSE security devs in Google+ rant

      Linux creator Linus Torvalds has posted a vitriolic rant on Google+ hammering the developers of OpenSUSE for “mentally diseased” security measures.

      Requiring users to provide an admin password to make even minor changes like adding a new wireless network or changing the time zone is “moronic and wrong,” according to the open source guru. The furious article was apparently prompted by Torvald’s daughter running into these security issues at school.

    • Greg KH: The 2.6.32 Linux kernel
    • Nvidia’s Embrace of Linux Foundation Highlights Open Source’s Growing Status
    • Lustre User Group Announces Conference Program
    • Graphics Stack

      • TitaniumGL: A Faster Multi-Platform Graphics Driver Architecture?

        After first being introduced on Windows years ago, and then FreeBSD and ReactOS support added last year, this week finally marked the release of TitaniumGL for Linux. TitaniumGL is self-described as a “freeware driver architecture” and carries a goal to support OpenGL on graphics cards with broken, bad, or missing OpenGL hardware drivers. Here are some benchmarks of TitaniumGL compared to NVIDIA’s binary GPU driver and the Mesa/Gallium3D LLVMpipe software rasterizer.

      • VMware’s Linux 3D Guest Driver Is Ready

        The vmwgfx DRM kernel driver left the staging area in the Linux 3.2 kernel, marking it as a point ready for stable production use. The Gallium3D user-space driver for VMware became properly christened in Mesa 8.0 along with the new XA State Tracker for 2D acceleration and other changes. The final piece of the accelerated VMware puzzle is now fitted: the xf86-video-vmware 12.0 DDX driver. (Read VMware’s New Graphics Architecture Is Shaping Up.)

      • Linux 3.4 Kernel Will Support Intel Medfield Graphics

        The merge window for the Linux 3.4 kernel will open up this month assuming the latest Linux 3.3 release plans work out. One of the features to look forward to out of Linux 3.4 will be the DRM driver support for Intel Medfield graphics.

  • Applications

  • Distributions

    • Review: MadBox 11.10

      MadBox is an Ubuntu-based Openbox distribution that aims to be user-friendly as well. In essence, it is the successor to #! for the Ubuntu base. Development on MadBox and related applications like ADeskBar seemed to have ceased after version 10.10, but a few months ago (though I only found out about it a few weeks ago) a new version based on Ubuntu 11.10 “Oneiric Ocelot” was released, coinciding with the unveiling of a new website for the distribution.

    • New Releases

    • Debian Family

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Government use of Ubuntu

            Governments are making increasingly effective use of Ubuntu in large-scale projects, from big data to little schools. There is growing confidence in open source in government quarters, and growing sophistication in how they engage with it.

            But adopting open source is not just about replacing one kind of part with another. Open source is not just a substitute for shrink-wrapped proprietary software. It’s much more malleable in the hands of industry and users, and you can engage with it very differently as a result. I’m interested in hearing from thought leaders in the civil service on ways they think governments could get much more value with open source, by embracing that flexibility. For example, rather than one-size-fits-all software, why can’t we deliver custom versions of Ubuntu for different regions or countries or even departments and purposes? Could we enable the city government of Frankfurt to order PC’s with the Ubuntu German Edition pre-installed?

            Or could we go further, and enable those governments to participate in the definition and production and certification process? So rather than having to certify exactly the same bits which everyone else is using, they could create a flavour which is still “certified Ubuntu” and fully compatible with the whole Ubuntu ecosystem, can still be ordered pre-installed from global providers like Dell and Lenovo, but has the locally-certified collection of software, customizations, and certifications layered on top?

          • Ubuntu 12.04 to ship with enhanced privacy controls

            Ubuntu 12.04 will ship with new privacy controls for the Zeitgeist event logger. Zeitgeist is the program that runs in the background of Ubuntu’s Unity desktop environment collecting statistics on how users interact with their computers and offering suggestions based on most-used items and applications using machine-learning techniques.

          • Got Privacy? Ubuntu Linux 12.04 Will Help Ensure It.
          • New stable series for Canonical’s Bazaar version control

            The Bazaar developers have announced version 2.5.0 of the version control system that is used by the Linux Foundation, Ubuntu, the GNU project, Drizzle and many other free software projects to manage their source code. The new version marks the start of a long-term stable series due to be supported until April 2017. Users of previous stable releases of Bazaar are encouraged to upgrade.

          • Three Reasons the Ubuntu Desktop Lags the iPad
          • Five day private cloud deployment promises low stress, high quality

            Canonical, the company behind the Linux-based OS Ubuntu, is promising a private cloud infrastructure deployment service that it says takes exactly five days to complete, costs $9,000 and comes ready for channel resale.

            Canonical delivers the Jumpstart program using OpenStack as the cloud computing architecture in combination with DevOps program Juju, which enables end users to manage expansion more easily over time.

  • Devices/Embedded

Free Software/Open Source

Leftovers

  • “Algorithms can have errors”: One man’s quest to purge horrific pictures from his Google results
  • Security

  • Cablegate

  • Finance

    • One More Thing For Governance Day

      The basic argument is that repeat-player investment bankers provide value not by telling brainless executives whether to accept or reject a merger, but by providing intelligent decisionmakers with access and relationships, and relationships come with conflicts.

    • Chris Cook: The Ghost of Enron Past Explains Oil Market Manipulation

      I outlined in a recent post my view that the oil market price has been inflated twice by passive (inflation hedgers) investors, albeit with short term speculative spikes from active (speculators) investors: once from 2005 to June 2008; and again from early 2009 to date. In attempting to ‘hedge inflation’ passive investors perversely ended up actually causing it, and allowed oil producers to manipulate and support the oil market price with fund money to the detriment of oil consumers.

    • Fox Attacks Wages of Working-Class Maids

      Fox Business News recently ran a segment criticizing a collective bargaining agreement struck between workers and management in New York City’s hotel industry. Analysts on the program called the deal “a nightmare,” singling out the provisions raising wages for housekeepers as “shocking.” Fox’s reaction is consistent with its past coverage of worker’s issues, which has portrayed union efforts to secure higher wages and benefits for the working class as an affront to capitalism.

      The agreement between the New York Hotel Trades Council A.F.L.-C.I.O, the union representing workers in New York’s hotel industry, and the Hotel Association of New York, the trade group representing hotel owners, gives housekeepers a 29% raise in their current salary over seven years, giving them a salary of $59,823 by the time the CBA expires.

  • Censorship

    • Police Censor Google, Facebook and 8,000 Other Sites by Accident

      A “human error” carried out by the police resulted in thousands of websites being completely blocked at the DNS level yesterday. Danish visitors to around 8,000 sites including Google and Facebook were informed that the sites were being blocked by the country’s High Tech Crime Unit due to them offering child pornography, a situation which persisted for several hours.

    • Paypal Pressured To Play Morality Cop And Forces Smashwords To Censor Authors
    • Anonymous, Decentralized and Uncensored File-Sharing is Booming

      The file-sharing landscape is slowly adjusting in response to the continued push for more anti-piracy tools, the final Pirate Bay verdict, and the raids and arrests in the Megaupload case. Faced with uncertainty and drastic changes at file-sharing sites, many users are searching for secure, private and uncensored file-sharing clients. Despite the image its name suggests, RetroShare is one such future-proof client.

    • The True Damage Of An Illegitimate DMCA Takedown Goes Much Further Than Simple ‘Inconvenience’

      Whenever an artist finds their own creations removed by a erroneous DMCA takedown notice, defenders of the system are quick to point out that the collateral damage is minimal and, because the supposedly “offending” post/picture/etc. usually returns to its original place, what’s the big deal? It’s just an inconvenience and a small price to pay in order for rightsholders to protect their intellectual property.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality

    • BT and TalkTalk lose challenge against Digital Economy Act

      The government has been given the green light to implement the Digital Economy Act after the final legal challenge by two internet service providers was thrown out at the court of appeal.

      BT and TalkTalk on Tuesday lost their appeal against last year’s judicial review of the government’s controversial anti-piracy legislation on all but one ground.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Electronic Arts, identity thief?

      Identity theft is a huge problem that affects millions of Americans each year. If a crook stole your most personal information and used it to make a buck, you’d be furious.

      And, of course, that’s illegal. But if you are a corporation, you can steal all the identities you want for profit.

    • Trademarks

    • Copyrights

      • As BPI Tries To Block The Pirate Bay From The UK, Dan Bull Explains Why Musicians Should Block BPI

        Dan Bull, the UK-based musician who we’ve written about many times for his consistently awesome songs about the music industry, file sharing, copyright laws and the like has now put together another wonderful song, called Bye Bye BPI.

      • Streetlight Manifesto Proudly Boycotts Itself

        It is and has been for quite some time our position that Victory Records is an artist-hostile, morally corrupt and generally dishonest company, with whom we have had the displeasure of being associated due to a contract that was signed years ago. We’re not writing this today to air grievances, of which there are many; numerous bands’ struggles with Victory are well-documented (and many more are sealed by a court of law), so we figured we’re going to skip the allegations and try to solve the problem, as we see it.

      • Why Search Engines Can’t Just ‘Fix’ Search Results The Way The MPAA/RIAA Want

        It’s become clear in the past year or so that one key “target” in the legacy entertainment industry’s game plan is to force Google to change its search results to have “good sites” rise up and “bad sites” be pushed down. They’ve been putting pressure on search engines for quite some time now, and have even considered suing Google for not giving it the results they want. Late last year, the RIAA even put out a “report card” in which it complained that Google won’t let them program Google’s results for everyone else.

      • German Government Wants Google To Pay To Show News Snippets
      • Justices Won’t Hear Photo Site’s Suit Against Google

        The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday rejected an appeal by a nude-photo publisher that alleged Google Inc. was infringing its copyrighted images.

      • RIAA Still Doesn’t Get It: Hopes SOPA Opposition Was A ‘One-Time Experience’

        In a previous post, I looked at the first part of Andrew Keen’s interview with RIAA CEO Cary Sherman. In the second half of the interview, Sherman fields some audience questions collected on Twitter, and his answers further expose the serious problems with his understanding of what’s happening in music, what happened with SOPA, and what’s happening to his industry.

      • Can A Company Be An ‘Author’ For The Purpose Of Copyright?

        The specific case involved horse-racing tables and a dispute between two different horse-racing magazines, with one accusing the other of copyright infringement. Oddly, both magazines seem to admit that the actual data originated from neither magazine, but from the same third party: the Singapore Turf Club. Still, there appears to have been some questions about the layout and design, which could be given some level of copyright protection — but, apparently, only if it were created by “living humans.”

      • Chris Dodd: The Internet Developed Because Of Strict Copyright Enforcement

        His latest discussion on the topic came at the National Association of Attorneys General meeting in Washington DC — a “friendly” audience for Dodd. His discussion starts around the 2 hour, 10 minute mark if you want to fast forward the video. For reasons that are unclear, CSPAN has disabled embedding on this video. Either way, Dodd continues to show off that he has no idea what happened. The specific “panel” that he’s on is (of course) pretty one-sided. It involves him, old friend Rick Cotton from NBC Universal (“just think about the poor corn farmers!”) and then two university officials to talk about how they’re forced to censor the internet because of draconian laws that the MPAA pushed through (where there’s at least a little pushback on the ridiculousness of copyright law, but just barely).

      • INTERVIEW: Seth Godin on Libraries, Literary Agents and the Future of Book Publishing as We Know It
      • ACTA

        • Darrell Issa Posts Text Of ‘Unconstitutional’ ACTA For Open Feedback; Something USTR Never Did
        • Workshop Audience Barred From ‘Demonstrating’ Approval Of Michael Geist’s ACTA Takedown

          Although ACTA has now been referred by the European Commission to the European Court of Justice, it continues its passage through the various committees of the European Parliament, each of which will provide input on the final decision of whether to ratify ACTA or not. The first of these took place last week, when the International Trade (INTA) committee had a preliminary ACTA workshop. This included hearing from external experts, one of whom was Michael Geist, well known to Techdirt readers.

          It will come as no surprise to learn that his ten-minute speech succeeded in distilling the key flaws of ACTA in a highly-accessible way that left the treaty’s supporters desperately trying to undo the damage to their arguments for the rest of the day — and failing.

        • Obama Administration: ACTA Is Binding & Don’t Worry Your Pretty Little Heads About TPP

          That’s interesting, because it’s what many people had assumed (and what other signatories to ACTA have been saying), but actually contradicts earlier statements from the USTR suggesting that we can ignore parts of the agreement that we don’t like or which conflict with existing US law. It also means that, as we’ve been warning, ACTA dangerously restricts Congress from passing new laws that could push back on some of the worst aspects of copyright law. Sure, Congress could ignore ACTA, but there would be substantial problems if it were to do so. In other words, ACTA is binding on the US under international law… but not under US law. Of course, international law trumps US law here, so that’s kind of meaningless.

Links 9/3/2012: KDE 4.8.1, New Wine

Posted in News Roundup at 4:13 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

  • Zanata: Web-Based Translation Manager For Open Source Developer

    If you are a open source software developer or a content writer you can use Zanata to translate your software strings, User interface text/String, software documentation and localized into any languages.

    Zanata is an open-source translation manager that enables a community of translators to work on localising software and documentation using nothing more than a web browser.

  • Netcraft: Open web platforms the winners

    A new survey from Netcraft has Apache, Nginx, and Google’s web servers all up, with Microsoft IIS market share dropping down, raising questions about the health of Microsoft’s related offerings.

    The Netcraft results are always interesting, because there’s always a little something for everyone. Depending on how the data is presented, a given hosted domain could be up, down, or off in the ninth dimension. So, care must be taken when qualifying the survey results.

  • TLWIR 34: Africa Embraces Free Software
  • FTA Community demands TradePub to correct inappropriate use of FTA course books
  • Events

    • CeBIT 2012: At the Open Source Project Lounge

      The Open Source Project Lounge at this year’s CeBIT – taking place in Hannover, Germany until 10 March – is as diverse as ever, with a variety of free and open source (FOSS) projects and organisations being represented by both developers and community members alike. Despite primarily being a commercial show where space is expensive, each year, projects have the opportunity to apply for free booth space, and this year, the Open Source Project Lounge is in the corner of Hall 2. The H had the opportunity to attend this, the world’s largest ICT event, and catch up with a number of the projects’ representatives.

    • Linux Training Opportunities at Linux Foundation Collaboration Summit

      The Linux Foundation’s Collaboration Summit is a great time to, well, collaborate. But it’s also a really good opportunity to learn.

      We’re offering three courses at this year’s Collaboration Summit, each in a different area, to help build skills while rubbing elbows with other top kernel developers.

      Advanced Linux Performance Tuning is a deep dive into proven tools and methods used to identify and resolve performance problems, resulting in system that is better optimized for specific workloads. This is particularly for those who write or use applications that have unusual characteristics, that behave differently than kernel performance heuristics anticipate. It is a hands-on course that assume some familiarity with basic performance tools. This course is offered on Monday, April 2nd.

  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • Developers Should Love Mozilla Boot-to-Gecko Phone

        When Mozilla announced the Boot-to-Gecko, all-HTML cell phone last week at Mobile World Congress — along with a plan to partner with Telefonica Digital to build really cheap smart phones running the Mozilla system — I wondered if it was really possible to bring such a cheap phone to market, regardless of the underlying system running the phone.

      • Mozilla Doesn’t Want Pepper for Linux Flash

        A couple week ago, Adobe announced that is was abandoning Flash on Linux to Google. The idea being that Chrome integrates Flash and Google can be the place where Linux users go for Flash.

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

  • Education

  • BSD

  • Project Releases

    • PhoneGap 1.5 Released!
    • Vagrant celebrates its 1.0 stable release

      Exactly two years after its first release, the Vagrant project has announced the first stable version of its open source development environment generation tool. Vagrant 1.0 allows developers to easily set up virtual machines for development and testing purposes using Oracle’s VirtualBox and a single configuration file.

  • Openness/Sharing

    • An Open Source Robotic Surgeon Could Save Your Life

      Could the surgeon who saves your life be a robot? The answer to that could be yes, if the developers of the Raven II robotic surgeon have their way. Raven II comes with a surgical robot featuring two robotic arms, a camera for viewing the operational field, and a surgeon-interface system for remote operation of the robot. “The system is powerful and precise enough to support research on advanced robotic surgery techniques, including online telesurgery,” say U.C. Santa Cruz researchers who helped develop it (shown here). The code for Raven II is open source, and this robot is only one of several open source robots poised to advance healthcare.

  • Programming

    • Alpha release of Python 3.3.0 brings first syntax changes in two years

      The 3.3.0 version of the Python programming language has entered the testing phase with its first alpha release. This version marks the lifting of a two-year moratorium on changes to the language’s syntax. Proposed by Guido van Rossum as Python Enhancement Proposal (PEP) 3003, the moratorium was designed to enable non-CPython implementations of the language to catch up to the core implementation after the Python 3.0 release.

    • A Primer on Scientific Programming with Python, an interview with author Hans Petter Langtangen

      I am a professor of mathematical modeling at the University of Oslo, but for the last 10 years I have been on 80% leave to work at Simula Research Laboratory, which carries out long-term basic research in ICT. At Simula, my main responsibility is to be the manager of a Norwegian Center of Excellence, named Center for Biomedical Computing. Our aim is to develop mathematical methods and software tools to study biomedical phenomena and thereby help clinicians in improving diagnostics and treatment. I am an active scientist and participate in several of the center’s projects. More information is found on cbc.simula.no.

    • Develop Android apps from within Android using AIDE (video)
  • Standards/Consortia

Leftovers

  • Security

    • GitHub security incident highlights Ruby on Rails problem

      On Sunday morning, 4 March, Egor Homakov exploited a flaw in how the Ruby on Rails web framework handles mass assignments that allowed him to write a posting, delete a posting or push changes into source code on any GitHub project. Homakov had previously created an issue regarding mass assignment security on the rails issue tracker on GitHub; this was closed by the developers saying that it was the application developers’ responsibility to secure their applications. Homakov then decided to demonstrate the issue using the nearest Ruby on Rails application, GitHub.

    • At Pwn2Own Hacker Competition, Google Chrome Gets Punk’d

      Slowly but surely, the Pwn2Own hacker contest has become an important fixture in the world of testing the security of software applications, operating systems and hardware devices. Just prior to last year’s Pwn2Own competition, Apple dropped a series of important updates to its Safari browser and iOS platform, but that didn’t stop Charlie Miller from exploiting a Safari vulnerability to hack into an iPhone’s address book. The results from the 2012 Pwn2Own hacker contest are now in, and one of the major software applications to lose to the hackers this year was Google Chrome.

    • OpenSUSE, Linus’ Daughter, and a Question of Security

      “Nobody likes the idea of having to practically beat their operating system into submission,… but this is the reality with Linux,” asserted Slashdot blogger Barbara Hudson. “One good idea layered over another good idea added to another good idea sometimes ends up with really bad results. We don’t all want to be ‘protected from ourselves’ by more and more features that assume the user is a dummy. There’s another OS for that.”

  • Censorship

    • All Your Internets Belong to US, Continued: The Bodog.com Case

      Imagine a scenario in which a country enacts a law that bans the sale of asbestos and includes the power to seize the assets of any company selling the product anywhere in the world. The country tests the law by obtaining a court order to seize key assets of a Canadian company, whose operations with hundreds of employees takes a major hit. The Canadian government is outraged, promising to support the company in its efforts to restore its operations.

      That is the opening of my technology law column this week (Toronto Star version, homepage version) which continues by noting this scenario became reality last week, though the product was not asbestos and the Canadian government has yet to respond. The case involves Bodog.com, a Canadian-owned online sports gaming site and the country doing the seizing was the United States. Supporting online gaming operations will undoubtedly make governments somewhat squeamish, but the broader implications of last week’s seizure touch on millions of websites and Internet companies who now find themselves subject to U.S. jurisdiction.

    • Banned Facebook promises Chinese devs GLOBAL glory
  • Civil Rights

    • Vermonters Say: Corporations Are Not People!

      In a presidential primary season marked by the rise of “Super PACs” and an explosion of corporate spending in elections, Vermont voters have raised their voices against special interest money in politics. On Super Tuesday, 63 out of a possible 65 towns in Vermont called on Congress to pass a constitutional amendment to overturn the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Citizens United v. F.E.C. and to address the issue of corporate personhood and money in politics.

      The 2010 Citizens United decision, which Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders labeled “one of the worst decisions the Supreme Court has ever handed down,” struck down bipartisan clean election laws and declared that Congress could not limit so-called “independent” spending. After Citizens United, the 2010 fall elections were the most expensive in U.S. history, with more spending by outside groups than from the candidates themselves. The 2012 election cycle is on track to be the most expensive yet.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • ACTA

        • ACTA may already be dead

          During last week’s public workshop on ACTA, held in presence of Commissioner Karel De Gucht and moderated by MEP Vital Moreira, chairman of the INTA committee1, the manifest tension made it obvious: the Parliament and the Commission are now afraid of citizens,and of the streets. What we saw during the workshop was a parody of debate, where speakers were either members of the Commission, academics, or among the few of the remaining ACTA proponents (including the chairman of a pro-ACTA lobby2!). Nobody from authors, artists or citizen groups were allowed on the panels, despite La Quadrature’s demand to participate.

        • Danish trade minister and ACTA booster apologise for bogus piracy numbers

          Here’s a clip of a Danish TV show discussing ACTA, which Denmark has fiercely advocated in favor of. It starts with the head of a rightsholder society and the Danish trade minister quoting dodgy statistics about the extent and cost of piracy, and then demonstrates that these statistics are patently false, and finally, brings out those responsible for quoting them and gets them to admit their errors.

03.07.12

Links 7/3/2012: NVIDIA Joins Linux Foundation, Android Easily Beats iOS in the US

Posted in News Roundup at 6:45 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • The Linux Setup, Noah Lorang, 37signals

    Noah’s on my radar because of this post he wrote about how operating systems are becoming irrelevant. The piece points out how Noah was able to effortlessly switch from OS X to Linux. I appreciated the post because it wasn’t about the politics of free and open source software. Instead, he was writing about getting to choose the best tools for the job, an idea that sometimes gets misplaced in our conversations about Linux.

  • The “Linux” Brand

    Part of “Technological Evangelism” according to M$ is to denigrate competitive brands. In the FLOSS world, unfortunately, there is too much of that. One item is the holding down of the “Linux” brand. Two popular examples are Android/Linux and Ubuntu GNU/Linux. S

  • Kernel Space

    • OMAP4 Kernel Vulnerabilities Fixed for Ubuntu 11.04

      Canonical announced on March 6th, in a security notice, that a new Linux OMAP4 kernel update for its Ubuntu 11.04 (Natty Narwhal) operating system is now available, fixing six security vulnerabilities discovered in the Linux kernel packages by various developers.

    • LPI announces “Linux Essentials” Program
    • Graphics Stack

      • X.Org Server 1.12 Released With Multi-Touch

        X.Org Server 1.12 is now officially available with X Input 2.2, which is the X Input extension update that formally introduces multi-touch support.

        While the release of X.Org Server 1.12 wasn’t as drawn out as MythTV 0.25, this release is coming about a month late due to Keith Packard, the xorg-server release manager, taking a bicycling trip through New Zealand. However, it’s now available following the revised release plans (and the developers are now hitting targets much better than in the past).

      • AMD Launches Pitcairn GPUs, Open-Source Not There

        Yesterday AMD officially launched the Radeon HD 7800 “Pitcairn” series as the latest hardware in their Southern Islands family to reside between the Radeon HD 7700 series and their flagship Radeon HD 7900 cards. Unfortunately, the open-source support for these latest AMD GPUs remains unavailable.

      • Turning Mesa Into JavaScript For The Web?

        Besides the recent talk about using Gallium3D’s LLVMpipe for Mozilla Firefox, there’s another interesting technical discussion happening now about using Mesa on the web to emulate the full OpenGL API using the WebGL API.

      • Radeon Gallium3D Now Sort Of Works For OpenCL
      • Plugging X.Org GPU Hot-Plugging Into Mainline

        Earlier today was the first round of comments by David Airlie regarding the finishing and up-streaming of his X.Org GPU hot-plugging support. This allows for new GPUs to be dynamically added to a running X.Org Server environment.

        Airlie has been working on the GPU hot-plugging support for a number of months, but recently it’s finally come together. In particular, he’s been playing with the USB-based DisplayLink graphics adapters. David has written a DisplayLink KMS driver to top off DisplayLink’s other code and open-source support. This could also be adapted to work with dynamically hot-plugging/unplugging other graphics processors too.

      • NVIDIA Is Joining The Linux Foundation

        NVIDIA will be joining the Linux Foundation, per an announcement coming out in the morning. But for open-source Linux fans, will this be a reason to rejoice about NVIDIA potentially moving forward with open-source drivers? Don’t break out the champagne quite yet.

      • Nvidia Joins The Linux Foundation
      • A New OpenCL Back-End For LLVM Is Published

        Besides the open-source AMD Radeon support for OpenCL finally taking shape, there’s more good open-source OpenCL news: a newly open-sourced LLVM OpenCL back-end.

        Back in August I wrote about an OpenCL, GLSL back-end for LLVM that may soon open up. The work was the result of a German student writing the LLVM OpenCL back-end as part of his university thesis. OpenCL is generated from LLVM bit-code, similar to how the Emscripten project is generating JavaScript from LLVM bit-code. This work is what’s finally being opened up.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

  • Distributions

    • Nosonja XFCE 2012.02.29 Screenshots
    • New Releases

      • Clonezilla 1.2.12-29
      • IPFire 2.11 – Core Update 57 released
      • CeBIT 2012: Knoppix 7.0 presented

        Speaking at this year’s CeBIT Open Source ForumGerman language link, Knoppix creator Klaus Knopper presented version 7.0 of his popular Live Linux distribution. The new release is a special “CeBIT Edition” which is based on Debian “Wheezy” and uses the 3.2.4 Linux kernel. Available as a LiveDVD, it now uses UTF-8 encoding, and can run on both 32- and 64-bit systems.

      • Knoppix 7.0 release begins now

        The next major version of venerable Live Linux distro Knoppix is slowly making it’s way out the door over the next couple of days, includes some major updates to compatibility and performance

    • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandrake/Mandriva Family

    • Debian Family

      • Debian GNU/Linux Keeps Getting Stronger

        Look at the steepness of the bug-count for the next release (green curve) at Debian. Even as the count of packages in the repository rises, the rate at which bugs are getting killed in the release-cycle keeps rising. This shows the power of FLOSS. By using a modular layered approach, a thousand people can change the world faster than tens of thousands working in the darkness of M$. It’s beautiful that you can have the benefits of a package manager that keeps all your systems updated for applications as well as the OS at very low cost. I recommend Debian GNU/Linux. It works for you.

      • LLVM’s Clang Is Almost Good Enough For Debian

        Clang, the C/C++ front-end compiler for LLVM, is progressing quite quickly and is capable of building the Debian archives quite well, at least for a majority of the packages and on popular architectures.

        A Debian developer’s side project has been to see how well it would work to re-build the Debian archive (the entire distribution) using LLVM’s Clang C/C++ compiler rather than GCC. Apple has rated LLVM/Clang as being production-ready and it continues to find new uses, especially with the recent LLVM 3.0 release. But how well does LLVM/Clang work for building the massive Debian package-set?

      • Derivatives

  • Devices/Embedded

Free Software/Open Source

  • Events

  • Web Browsers

  • Business

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

  • Licensing

    • Inside the ToyBox: An interview with Rob Landley

      A recent controversy about the legal aspects of software licensing put Rob Landley in the middle of an argument, but Landley says his real focus is on code, especially his ToyBox project – a reworking of the concepts of a project he once maintained, the Swiss-army knife of commands that is BusyBox. The H had a chance to talk with him about ToyBox, BusyBox and why he likes to work on these multifunctional monolithic utilities.

  • Standards/Consortia

    • Open source helicopters trivialize Europe’s ODF troubles

      While technocrats in Westminster and Brussels cringe over the question of open document formats, the US military is planning a generation of open source helicopters.

      This is not just a generation of helicopters. It is the next generation of US military helicopter. It’ll be built on open standards, and will actively court open source systems suppliers.

      The US Army issued an official request for information on the proposal last week, formally kick-starting a procurement that will make the pedestrian kerfuffle over document formats in civvy street seem, well, pedestrian.

      It has already shone an unforgiving light on the question of royalties – one that has undermined every civil administration that has attempted to implement an open standards policy in Europe.

      Weapons manufacturers and US forces made an unequivocal declaration for royalty-free standards in January through the FACE (Future Airborne Capabilities Environment) Consortium they formed in response to US Defence Secretary Leon Panetta’s call for a “common aircraft architecture and subsystems”.

      “The FACE Standard is an open, nonproprietary technical specification that is publicly available without restrictive contracts, licensing terms, or royalties,” the Consortium announced from its base at The Open Group, the industry association responsible for the POSIX open Unix specification.

      “In business terms, the open standards specified for FACE mean that programmers are freely able to use them without monetary remuneration or other obligation to the standards owner,” it said.

Leftovers

  • Windows 8 showdown: Face-off on whether Windows still matters
  • “8″ Down and One to Go
  • Security

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • More Free Sludge! Calabasas, California Offers Free Sewage Sludge “Compost”

      Good news! The sewage treatment plant in Calabasas, California has been giving away free sludge! Free sludge, you say? That potent stew of human and industrial sewage sludge laced with flame retardants, endocrine disruptors, pharmaceutical residues, phthalates, industrial solvents, resistant pathogens, and perfluorinated compounds? “Composted” sludge, which can bioaccumulate in plants grown in sludge-contaminated soil? Oh, goodie.

  • Finance

    • Goldman Secret Greece Loan Shows Two Sinners as Client Unravels

      Greece’s secret loan from Goldman Sachs Group Inc. was a costly mistake from the start.

      On the day the 2001 deal was struck, the government owed the bank about 600 million euros ($793 million) more than the 2.8 billion euros it borrowed, said Spyros Papanicolaou, who took over the country’s debt-management agency in 2005. By then, the price of the transaction, a derivative that disguised the loan and that Goldman Sachs persuaded Greece not to test with competitors, had almost doubled to 5.1 billion euros, he said.

    • Goldman Sachs: Social Security and Medicare Are ‘Weaker’ Promises Than Debt

      A report released today by Goldman Sachs says that if push comes to shove, the federal government will pay its lenders before it pays Social Security and Medicare beneficiaries. Debt service “should be seen as the top claim on government resources in most cases,” says the Goldman analysis.

  • Civil Rights

    • Mexico Adopts Alarming Surveillance Legislation

      The Mexican legislature today adopted a surveillance legislation that will grant the police warrantless access to real time user location data. The bill was adopted almost unanimously with 315 votes in favor, 6 against, and 7 abstentions. It has been sent to the President for his approval.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • Pinterest and copyright: Why you should keep sharing–and keep pinning

        Pinterest is a social site for image sharing around themes that launched in closed beta in March 2010. As the site proceeded through an invite system and finally registration requests, it gained a considerable following and was one of Time’s “50 Best Websites of 2011.” In January 2012, it drove more referral traffic to retailers than YouTube, Google+, and LinkedIn combined and became the fastest site to ever break 10 million unique visitors. As its popularity increases, so have concerns about whether its users aren’t just sharing their favorite things, but engaging one another in the web’s largest copyright infringement platform.

      • ACTA

03.06.12

Links 6/3/2012: Rejecting a New Mac and Vista 8; Linux 3.3 RC6 is Out

Posted in News Roundup at 8:29 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Linux Faithful Author Writes Novel Entirely In Tweets

    Notable science fiction and fantasy novelist Piers Anthony has now gone where no author has gone before. Twitter. Anthony, who is new to Twitter is attempting to write an entire novel using only tweets.

  • Softpedia Linux Weekly, Issue 189
  • Mini Versus Micro

    The x86 personal computers have long been powerful enough to run the applications of multiple users. I have often run a whole computer lab from a single PC running GNU/Linux. I used the lab’s PCs as thin clients. There is another way to use a PC for multiple users and that is to connect multiple monitors, keyboards and mice to one PC. That is what MiniFrame has been doing from M$’s OS. M$ liked that so much that they revised their EULA for Vista to include a “single-user” requirement.

  • Ninja Block Linux computer reaches $80k crowd-funding

    The Ninja Block open source cloud automation device looks as if it could be heading into the development stage after attracting $50,000 of pledges in only a week on the Kickstarter crowd-funding website.

  • Desktop

    • Windows 8 may drive me to Linux

      I have been a Microsoft defender for decades. “No, MS-DOS 4.0 isn’t really that bad,” I pleaded to friends almost 25 years ago. “Give Windows 98 a chance” I begged ten or 11 years later. Heck, I extolled the virtues of Vista (which I did believe in, by the way) to anyone willing to listen. But in the wake of last week’s introduction of the Consumer Preview edition of Windows 8, I can say only this: Microsoft, you’re on your own.

      Never — and I’m going to repeat this for additional emphasis, never – have I been as horrified by one of the company’s products as I am by this one. (Yes, I used Microsoft Bob.) Every choice seems to have been made for a sketchy reason, and the full collection of them bears the haphazard feel of the morning after a particularly raucous college party. Scratch that: Even at my most inebriated, I’m pretty sure I would never conceive of something like Windows 8.

    • Why I Hate My Brand New Mac (APPL)

      Hands down the fastest boot-up time is Ubuntu. Without fail, 10-ish seconds after typing my password, it was ready to go. Even on an old machine. Even if I left a lot of files and apps open.

    • 1% is a Statistic. This is a Trend.

      235 million page requests last month were from Linux systems. 161.9 million from Android/Linux for 3.36% share and 1.52% for GNU/Linux. That other OS was clinging to monopoly at 74%. In April, 2009, that other OS was at 89.5%. Times are changing.

  • Server

  • Kernel Space

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • Fog: A High-Performance Alternative To Cairo

      While Cairo gets much of the spotlight when it comes to a 2D vector graphics drawing library, there’s another open-source project that claims to provide even faster performance and greater benefits; meet the Fog-Framework.

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC)

      • KDE Commit-Digest for 26th February 2012
      • KDE – Best Desktop Environment of the Year

        The 2011 Members’ Choice Awards from LinuxQuestions.org has honored the KDE Community with “Best Desktop Environment of the Year”. In addition, Tech Radar has declared that KDE Workspaces are the best desktop environment. KDE innovation, performance and stability have particular appeal for users. Tech Radar reports that KDE Workspaces have “the best mix of cutting edge software and stability…”, and writes, “We were amazed by the level of comfort the users experienced with KDE.” Chris from the Linux Action Show is switching to KDE!

    • GNOME Desktop

      • We need a Gnome computer

        tl;dr we need a Gnome computer.

        This is not about choice, it is about freedom.

        A hardware platform that would be libre, that would run a libre OS, based on Gnome, Linux and GNU.

  • Distributions

    • Linux Deepin 11.12.1 screen shots
    • A look at Frugalware Linux 1.6

      The Frugalware Linux live CD is provided as a 490 MB CD image. Burning this image to a disc and booting from it brings us to an Xfce desktop environment with a pleasant blue background. On the desktop we find icons for navigating the file system and launching the system installer. The application menu and task switcher are positioned at the top of the screen. In the top-right corner of the display an icon appeared indicating network status and I was surprised to find the icon showed I was not connected. Opening a terminal I tried to ping a server and found the live CD doesn’t include the ping command. Nor does it include the FTP command-line client, nor telnet. Deciding to change gears I clicked the icon for launching the distro’s web browser. A prompt came up asking which browser I would like to make my default, though only one browser, Midori, is listed as available. Once the browser launched I found that I was, in fact, connected to the network, despite the status presented by the network icon.

    • How to Find the Perfect Linux Distribution for You

      Linux is a badass open-source operating system. Take it from a card-carrying Linux lover. But it’s not without problems. One such problem: There are nearly six hundred different versions of Linux out there—an incredibly overwhelming number to even the most experienced of Linux users. If you’ve tinkered with Linux a bit and want to move beyond the basics, here’s how to narrow down that selection and find the distribution that fits your needs.

    • Chakra 2012.02: improved, but still confusing

      I have already written about two Linux distribution releases which happened in February: PCLinuxOS and Sabayon. Although it is already March, I still would like to write a third one about just another February release. Let it be three.

    • Linux From Scratch 7.1 published

      The Linux From Scratch (LFS) project has published version 7.1 of its manual for building a custom Linux installation. The new release of the step-by-step instructions is 345 pages long and uses more up-to-date components than previous versions – for example, the 3.2.6 Linux kernel and version 4.6.2 of the GNU Compiler Collection (GCC). The update includes fixes to bootscripts and corrections to the text, as well as updates to 20 packages.

    • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandrake/Mandriva Family

    • Gentoo Family

      • Sabayon 8.0 review – The love is gone

        Once upon a time, Sabayon impressed me as a cute, furry mutation of Gentoo, a distribution forged in virgin’s blood and C code. It was big, even massive, and dared fight byte for byte with the likes of Vista. While most distributions were proud to claim their minimalistic share of GB for the installation, Sabayon shouted gimme more. It was nice. Lots of fun stuff, games, a media center, whatnot. Then it went downhill.

        Between versions oh-four and oh-five, some of the fun was gone, traded for maturity that did not suit it well. In fact, I let Sabayon rest for a while before picking it up again for today’s review. Now I’m aware of its Gentoo legacy, so credits are due when they are due, but that does not make the need for a suitable, friendly desktop environment any less. Therefore, me asking, can Sabayon deliver?

    • Debian Family

      • Debian Project News – March 5th, 2012

        * Rebuild of the Debian archive with clang
        * Debian Peru revival
        * DebConf11 final report is out
        * Debian Utsav
        * Other news
        * Upcoming events
        * New Debian Contributors
        * Release-Critical bugs statistics for the upcoming release
        * Important Debian Security Advisories
        * New and noteworthy packages
        * Work-needing packages
        * Want to continue reading DPN?

      • You can now run Arch & Debian Linux on a Raspberry Pi
      • Raspberry Pi gets Arch Linux
      • Raspberry Pi and Cotton Candy: Computing’s Newest Treats

        “People are going to take these [RPi] boards and turn them into commercial products; they’re going to make gonzo one-off hardware projects ‘because they can.’ They’re going to use them in ways that we can’t begin to imagine, in places we wouldn’t normally think of,” said Slashdot blogger Barbara Hudson. “Instead of Beowulf clusters or Lego blocks, we can now think ‘tinker toys for the mind.’”

      • Linux operating system for Raspberry Pi ready for download

        The Linux operating system for the Raspberry Pi bare-bones computer is ready to download.

      • Raspberry Pi adds Arch Linux to downloads
      • 3D-print your own Raspberry Pi case at home

        If you’re one of the lucky thousands who snagged a $35 Raspberry Pi pocket Linux system before the first run of 10,000 sold out in just a few minutes, there’s almost certainly one question on your mind–where am I going to put this thing?

        The Raspberry Pi is a full system with all the needed ports that’s about the size of a credit card. It’s definitely cheap, but it’s not exactly pretty. That’s likely because its nonprofit designers are mainly focused on their mission of getting the systems into the hands of kids across the developed and developing world to get them excited about programming.

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • What Ubuntu Can Take Away From The Raspberry Revolution

            While the $25 Raspberry Pi is turning a million eyeballs, Canonical’s incessant attempts at conquering non-Ubuntuers don’t seem to be working out as hoped or planned. Even though Shuttleworth, Canonical’s benevolent dictator, has decided to go all out in order to reach his 200-million mark as early as possible, the efforts are still visibly falling short. The recent announcements including Ubuntu TV and Ubuntu for Android have created some buzz among the non-Linuxiens, it’s still nothing compared to what Raspberry Pi has achieved in such a short span of time.

          • Here’s Top Ten Wallpapers from the Ubuntu Precise Wallpaper Contest
          • Unity Desktop Launcher

            The new Unity Launcher is a new and very significant part of the desktop environment. After logging into your system the Launcher will automatically appear along the left edge of your screen. The Launcher can be used to store and run all of your favorite applications.

          • Canonical Releases First Beta Version Of Ubuntu 12.04
          • Is Ubuntu 12.04 a Linux Game Changer?

            Ever since the Unity desktop first came to Ubuntu, I’ve been critical of it and found myself completely disinterested in it. Some aspects of this discontent may have stemmed from my refusal to try something new. But certainly Unity had some rough edges in the beginning.

            In short, Unity was a neat idea that needed more time to develop.

            With Ubuntu 12.04 just around the corner, I was shocked to discover that Unity now offers a stable and configurable desktop experience. Thanks to the HUD (heads up display), more Unity-based configuration options, support for Sandy Bridge, and improved power consumption, Ubuntu 12.04 is shaping up to be a really solid release.

          • Ubuntu 12.04 Open Source OS LTS Offers More Features, Polish

            We’ve now officially entered the season that comes only, er, twice a year: the countdown to the next iteration of Ubuntu. With beta 1 of Ubuntu 12.04 now available, it’s time to take a look at what’s new — and there’s a lot of it — in the latest and greatest version of what is (probably) the world’s most popular open source operating system.

          • … for human beings

            For the first time with Ubuntu 12.04 LTS, real desktop user experience innovation is available on a full production-ready enterprise-certified free software platform, free of charge, well before it shows up in Windows or MacOS. It’s not ‘job done’ by any means, but it’s a milestone. Achieving that milestone has tested the courage and commitment of the Ubuntu community – we had to move from being followers and integrators, to being designers and shapers of the platform, together with upstreams who are excited to be part of that shift and passionate about bringing goodness to a wide audience. It’s right for us to design experiences and help upstreams get those experiences to be amazing, because we are closest to the user; we are the last mile, the last to touch the code, and the first to get the bug report or feedback from most users.

          • First Beta of Ubuntu Version 12.04 Features Many Improvements

            Late last week, after a long alpha release test period, which we covered here, the first beta version of Ubuntu 12.04 (dubbed Precise Pangolin) became available. You can get it and read about it now, although the Ubuntu Wiki warns that this beta is primarily for developers and testers at this point. This new version of Ubuntu is a major upgrade. Here is more on what to expect from it.

          • Unity Desktop Lenses

            One of the most popular features of the new Unity desktop are the Lenses. You can uses lenses to sort and search for items inside the Unity dash. For example, a lens for music will allow you to filter your searches for all of your music items and display music only in your search results. There are several lenses that can be added to the dash, each providing its own impressive functions as well.

          • Ubuntu 12.04 Global Menu News Update: HUD Lands In Unity 2D
  • Devices/Embedded

    • Time to eat humble raspberry Pi – Linux is NOT a processor

      First and foremost Raspberry Pi are a UK not-for-profit foundation.

      Though the credit-card sized naked motherboard does contain many ports including USBs and an SD card reader, it does not include a wireless mouse, screen or carry case.

      The peripherals are left up to users to find and build. Sort of.

      The two authorised resellers Premier Farnell/Element 14 and RS Components provide bundle packages that include all the bells and whistles to make it easier for users to build their own computers and create their own software programs.

    • Educators and Leaders Are Praising Low-Cost Raspberry Pi Devices
    • Phones

    • Sub-notebooks/Tablets

      • Hardware Profile: exciTe 10 LE

        Just one more entry in the Hardware Profiles category, where I profile upcoming and available mobile devices powered by Linux-based operating systems (distributions, as we like to call them). This one is an Android tablet from Toshiba.

      • Get A KDE Spark Tablet RIGHT NOW!

        Potential buyers have been clamoring over the new KDE Spark tablet. Though predicted to perform otherwise, demand has been incredibly high as suggested by the sheer volume of pre-orders over at Make-Play-Live. Well, you don’t have to wait in line…

        The Spark tablet is really just a re-branded unit. At first, €200 doesn’t seem like a lot of scratch, but once you get familiar with the intimate details of the hardware, you find something here that you might not be able to carry with you as a daily-driver. I must say however, the allure of this rather nice looking experience is enough for me… Now, how well will this run on a Touchpad??

Free Software/Open Source

Leftovers

  • Security

  • Finance

    • Canada Lobbies Against US Banking Reform

      You can say one thing for the powers that be in the banking industry. They’ve got a lot of nerve.

      This past week, our own finance minister, Jim Flaherty, along with Mark Carney, the Governor of the Bank of Canada, came out strongly in opposition to a modest proposal to regulate the U.S. banking system.

      Their interventions followed a concerted effort by American bank lobbyists to spark international opposition to U.S. regulatory reforms.

      What a shameful spectacle! Less than four years ago, the world was holding its breath for fear the crisis in the hyper-deregulated U.S. financial system would cause a second Great Depression. Now Canada and other foreign governments, cheered on by U.S. banking interests, are doing their best to block U.S. legislation that would curb the industry’s worst excesses.

    • Federal judge weighs whether to let regulators rein in oil speculators

      A federal judge on Monday refused to halt efforts by a key regulator to limit excessive speculation in the trading of oil contracts — which is driving up oil and gasoline prices — but hinted that he might soon rule in favor of Wall Street and let speculation go unchecked.

      Robert Wilkins, a judge on the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, declined a request for a preliminary injunction to halt the Commodity Futures Trading Commission from implementing a congressional mandate to limit how many oil contracts any single financial speculator or company can control.

      However, Wilkins told both the CFTC and lawyers for the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association and the International Swap and Derivatives Association that he expected to make a ruling soon on whether to hear the case. His line of questioning left both sides with the impression that he was concerned about how the regulatory agency has proceeded.

  • Privacy

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • 03/03/2012

      Talks on a free trade agreement between Canada and the European Union may take months longer to complete than initially planned as Canada seeks the best possible deal, Ottawa said on Tuesday.

      The agreement is particularly important for Canada, which is seeking to diversify exports away from the giant U.S. market.

      The two sides still have to settle contentious issues such as whether to amend Canada’s Patent Act to give more protection to European drug firms, a move the Canadian generic pharmaceutical industry opposes.

    • Blood in the water: Reports from the latest Trans-Pacific Partnership Stakeholder Forum

      I’m in Melbourne to advocate for free software users and developers at the latest round of negotiations for the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP), and I’m chomping at the bit to share a little good news with you all. The tone of the discussion here has turned much more friendly to us—and it’s thanks to your activism.

    • Rampant GMO Contamination Unchecked by Judge

      A judge in New York sided with Monsanto and against organic farmers in the first case of its kind seeking to protect famers from being accused of patent infringement upon unitentional contamination by Monsanto’s GMO seed.

      Organic farmers sought a judgment against Monsanto to protect themselves from being sued for patent infringement when their crops are unintentionally contaminated with the company’s genetically modified (GMO) seed, was dismissed in federal district court in New York by Judge Naomi Buchwald called the plaintiffs’ concern an “intangible worry, unanchored in time.”

    • Trademarks

      • THQ Trademarks ‘Evolve’

        On the 22nd of February, video games publisher THQ filed a trademark with the United States Patent & Trademark Office for a property called “Evolve”.

        It is still unclear what the term stands for, but we know that it pertains to “computer game software; video game software; downloadable video games.” Gamespot requested more information on the patent, unfortunately a THQ representative responded by saying “Sorry, no, we don’t comment on filings.”

    • Copyrights

      • In Copyright Enforcement, Ought Implies Can

        These two pieces are largely addressing different questions. Ruffini and Salam point out that the federal government have been pouring resources into anti-piracy efforts, and restraining individual liberty in the process, for decades. These efforts haven’t been very effective, and there’s no reason to think that the even greater efforts Hollywood advocates will be much more effective. So, they argue, Hollywood needs to recognize that the war on piracy can’t be won decisively and take pragmatic steps to deal with this reality.

        VerBruggen responds by insisting that piracy is wrong. He’s right, but this doesn’t get him as far as he thinks it does. This isn’t just an abstract exercise in moral philosophy. The government has limited resources, and a long list of problems to deal with. The question isn’t “should the government try to stop piracy,” it’s “how many resources should the government devote to combatting piracy as opposed to other problems.”

      • ACTA

        • SOPA, ACTA and the TPP: Lessons for a 21st Century Trade Agenda

          The ham-handed attempts by the U.S. entertainment industry to rein in online piracy, the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and the Protect IP Act (PIPA), triggered an earthquake of public backlash that led to one of the quickest legislative collapses in modern history. In one day, fueled by Internet blackouts and user protests, the once “slam dunk” legislative effort to censor the Internet and make websites liable for “infringing” user content quickly became politically untouchable.

        • Assessing ACTA: My Appearance Before the European Parliament INTA Workshop on ACTA

          The Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement has mushroomed into a massive political issue in Europe in recent weeks with protests in hundreds of cities across the continent. Much of the focus has been on whether the European Parliament will give its approval to the agreement. The focal point of attention within the EP has been on the INTA committee, which holds a public workshop on the issue today. Interest in the workshop has been incredible – there are apparently 800 registrants with thousands more expected to watch the live stream.

        • The Plans To Bring ACTA Back To Life

          Following the initial discussions in the European Parliament and the overwhelmingly negative workshop that was held on 1 March, ACTA is close to dead in Europe. What are the strategies for bringing it back to life and how will this impact on other similar initiatives? How can activists ensure that our great success so far can be maintained?

          The original intention was to adopt ACTA in May or June 2012, with the Commission Communication on review of the IPR Enforcement Directive 2004/48/EC (also known as “IPRED”) being launched at approximately the same time. The Commission’s “roadmap” for the review of the Directive is available here.

          The protests in the streets and the lack of support in the European Parliament created two big problems for the European Commission. Firstly, there was a significant risk of losing the Parliament vote and, secondly, the (successful) campaign against ACTA would create problems for the new proposal on the Enforcement Directive.

          The European Commission therefore decided to refer ACTA to the Court of Justice of the European Union in order to “de-couple” ACTA from IPRED. This leaves the way open for the launch of a legislative proposal in November/December. However, it is quite likely that these will be delayed to some extent.

          It has to be said that, while we would disagree with the Commission on a lot of aspects of IPRED, the Commission services working on the dossier do recognise many of the problems with the Directive and have ambitions to improve the legislation. They would, for example, seek to implement the rules against abuse of the Directive more effectively, in order to prevent disgraceful use of personal data, as in the ACS:Law case. The problem is that these positive proposals may not survive internal discussions in the Commission and the approach of the Parliament so far has been far from enlightened.

03.04.12

Links 4/3/2012: Cory Doctorow on Code Visibility, Oracle Enterprise Linux 5.8

Posted in News Roundup at 2:58 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

Leftovers

  • Windows 8 offers no management help for ARM devices

    Organizations looking to deploy Windows 8 on ARM-based (WOA) devices will have to do so without being able to manage them, according to a Microsoft advisory outlining the business benefits of the new operating system.

    While WOA scrimps on battery life, it falls short in management and compatibility with legacy applications, making it less than ideal for business.

  • Finance

    • Satyajit Das: Pravda The Economist’s Take on Financial Innovation

      The Economist sees financial innovation as positive; regarding it in the same sense as charity and goodwill to one’s fellow creatures. The reader is told that: “Finance has a very good record of solving big problems, from enabling people to realise the value of future income through products like mortgages to protecting borrowers from the risk of interest-rate fluctuations.” The definition of the “big problems” of our time is obviously subjective.

  • Censorship

  • Civil Rights

  • Internet/Net Neutrality

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Dear Big Newspapers: Keep Putting Up Silly Paywalls And Clear The Internet Field For Us ‘Newcomers’

      Apparently it’s a week of paywalls for a bunch of big newspaper websites. Newspaper giant Gannett announced that all of its newspaper websites with the exception of USA Today, will go paywall by the end of the year. The system will allow between 5 and 15 article views before you’re locked out. And then, the news broke that next week, the LA Times will be launching its own paywall. Again, it will allow 15 “free” article views per month, but then require payment — with the price being a rather astounding $3.99/week.

    • Copyrights

      • Yes, Online And Offline Rules Are Different… Because Online And Offline Are Different

        In the past we’ve discussed the ridiculousness of claiming that the internet is some sort of “wild west” without laws just because some people don’t like the laws covering the internet. Clearly, there are plenty of laws that deal with the internet. What people really mean when they call the internet “the wild west” is that they simply don’t like the laws — and specifically that those laws don’t fit into the analogy they have crafted for the internet.

      • Inside Views ‘Balanced’ Copyright: Not A Magic Solving Word

        It was obviously a moment of some embarrassment for the US Department of Commerce and the World Intellectual Property Organisation. Hardly two weeks after more than 100 NGOs and a few individuals, mostly located in the global South, requested that these two agencies postpone the upcoming Africa IP Summit, this is exactly what has happened to the session originally scheduled for Cape Town, South Africa in early April. But what about their substantive criticisms of the ideology, themes and speakers for this conference which were made in a 7 February open letter to WIPO Secretary General Francis Gurry? According to the NGOs, the original Cape Town event was promoting ‘an unbalanced IP agenda’ and they instead wanted a ‘balanced forum’ that would endorse a ‘balanced’ intellectual property agenda across the world. This article takes up the question: is balance the answer?

      • Kim Dotcom Gives TV Interview Where He Insists The Charges Against Him Are A Joke

        Generally speaking, if you’re facing criminal charges, it’s probably not a wise idea to give public interviews to the press, and I don’t see how doing this helps him in any way. He more or less lays out his expected argument concerning the copyright infringement claims, which are pretty much what you’d expect: that they followed the DMCA, took stuff down on request, and even gave copyright holders special access by which they could take links down themselves. Dotcom is clearly very well versed in the legal issues here, and he’s choosing his words extremely carefully, but it still seems a bit silly to reveal such arguments outside of court, and it could come back to haunt him later (you can bet US prosecutors are pouring over every word to figure out what they can hang him on.

      • UK Government Pressuring Search Engines To Censor Results In Favor Of Copyright Industries

        One of the most insidious aspects of recent Internet policy-making is that much of it is taking place behind closed doors, with little or no consultation — think of SOPA, PIPA, ACTA and TPP. But there’s another dangerous trend: the rise of “informal” agreements between the copyright industries and Internet service providers.

        With the implicit threat that tough legislation will be brought in if voluntary agreements aren’t drawn up promptly enough, governments are using this technique to avoid even the minimal scrutiny that consultations on proposed new laws would permit. This allows all kinds of bad ideas to be forced through without any evidence that they will help and without the chance for those affected to present their viewpoints.

      • TV Networks Gang Up To Sue Aereo; Do Copyright Rules Change Based On The Length Of A Cable?

        The TV networks hate, hate, hate this because they’ve been raking in oodles of cash from carriage fees from the cable and satellite guys. That’s how much cable and satellite has to pay to “retransmit” the local broadcast channels, and it’s become a huge, multi-billion dollar business that the TV guys have no interest in giving up in any way, shape or form. It’s the reason why you probably hear stories on a regular basis about some cable or satellite network will no longer carry a certain broadcast channel… leading to a lot of posturing and such before one side eventually backs down (often after a short blackout period).

      • EMI Sneakily Trying To Pretend Many Of Its Artists Can’t Reclaim Their Copyrights
      • Artist and Hacktivists Sabotage Spanish Anti-Piracy Law

        In an attempt to sabotage a new anti-piracy law that went into effect today, hundreds of websites in Spain are participating in a unique protest organized by a local hacktivist group. The websites all link to an “infringing” song by an artist loyal to the protest, who reported the sites to the authorities to overload them with requests.

      • Lawsuit Against US Copyright Group For Fraud & Extortion Moves Forward

        US Copyright Group was the first of the US-based copyright trolls, suing thousands of individuals in a single lawsuit, trying to get them to pay up (rather than going through an actual trial). US Copyright Group is really a front for a DC law firm, Dunlapp, Grubb & Weaver. One of its very first “big” lawsuits was against about 5,000 people for supposedly partaking in the sharing of Uwe Boll’s Far Cry. Of course, as we had noted, there was a pretty big problem in the Far Cry lawsuit, in that the US copyright registration was filed too late for many of the accusations of infringement.

      • Copyright kings are judge, jury and executioner on YouTube
      • ACTA

        • Time To Go: Why EU Commissioner De Gucht Has Disqualified Himself From Handling ACTA

          Even though the European Commission has referred ACTA to the European Court of Justice, the European Parliament continues to examine the treaty in its various committees. Earlier this week, the one dealing with International Trade met for a preliminary discussion. One of the key speakers was the Commissioner responsible for ACTA, Karel De Gucht, who naturally tried to make light of the many problems that have been raised in recent weeks.

          But as the text of his speech makes clear, he did a poor job. For example, in an apparent attempt to distract attention from the real issues, he brought up the irrelevant and widely-condemned DDoS attacks on the European Parliament, perhaps hoping to spread around a little guilt by association.

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