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12.11.14

Links 11/12/2014: systemd 218, Empire Total War

Posted in News Roundup at 12:13 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Desktop

    • Review: 6 business-class Chromebooks test their mettle

      I’ve spent the last three weeks taking six business-oriented Chromebooks through their paces. I started out as a skeptical Windows-rules-them-all kind of guy: I’ve been using Windows since the early days, and I’ve rarely strayed from the ghosts of my Windows masters. By the end of my Chromebook experiment, however, my old biases were shaken.

  • Kernel Space

    • F2FS On Linux 3.19 To Support Faster Boot Times

      The Flash-Friendly File-System (F2FS) will see another round of improvements with the now in-development Linux 3.19 kernel.

      The F2FS file-system this time around features several bug-fixes and other changes. The noteworthy work for this kernel cycle is less than previous cycles but includes better memory and I/O control when under memory pressure, support for the dirsync mount option, and a fastboot mount option to yield reduced boot times.

    • AMDKFD — AMD HSA On Linux — Will Not Support 32-Bit Linux

      This really shouldn’t come as a huge surprise, but AMD won’t support HSA on 32-bit Linux.

    • Hardkernel Launches $35 Development Board That Can Smash The RPi

      Hardkernel has announced the latest ODROID ARM development board. The ODROID-C1 is a $35 single-board computer that is similar in size to the Raspberry Pi but with much greater hardware specifications.

    • systemd 218 Released With More Additions

      The latest Linux excitement of today, which earlier seemed like an early Christmas, is the release of systemd 218.

    • Multi-Layer Support Coming To OverlayFS In Linux 3.19

      OverlayFS was finally merged in Linux 3.18 and now for the Linux 3.19 merge window it’s picking up another feature.

    • Linux 3.19 Kernel Adds Intel MPX Support For Skylake

      We’ve been talking about Intel MPX support in the kernel for one year and with the upcoming Linux 3.19 kernel that support is finally being realized.

    • Optimizations & Performance Improvements For DM In Linux 3.19

      Another one of the interesting early pull requests for the Linux 3.19 kernel is the Device Mapper changes.

    • Graphics Stack

    • Benchmarks

      • 6-Way Winter 2014 Linux Distribution Comparison

        With this week’s launch of Fedora 21, here’s a performance comparison of the new Fedora Linux release compared to the Arch-based Antergos rolling-release distribution, Debian GNU/Linux Jessie, openSUSE Tumbleweed, CentOS Linux 7, and Ubuntu 14.10.

        These six Linux distributions were all tested with the same hardware that came down to an MSI X99S SLI PLUS motherboard with Intel Xeon E5-2687W v3 ten-core processor plus Hyper Threading. The system also had 16GB of quad-channel DDR4 memory, 80GB Intel SSD, and Radeon HD 7850 graphics.

        All six Linux distributions were tested with their default installation settings and packages.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments/WMs

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

      • Qt 5.4 released

        I am happy to announce that Qt 5.4 has been released today and is available for download from qt.io. Together with Qt 5.4, we have also released Qt Creator 3.3 and an update to Qt for device creation on embedded Linux and embedded Android.

        But let’s start with Qt 5.4. One of the main focus areas of this Qt release has been around Web technologies and we have a lot of cool new things to offer there.

      • Qt 5.4 Officially Released
      • Meeting C++ and fantastic people

        I got back from Meeting C++ and I must say I loved every second of it. At first, it was a bit strange – I’m accustomed to KDE/Qt conferences where I know a lot of people. Here, it was not the case. It is a bit sad to see that barely anyone from the Qt community was there (apart from a few KDAB people), but that is a separate topic.

    • GNOME Desktop/GTK

  • Distributions

    • Linux Distros: What’s in a Name?

      Yesterday, the Fedora Project released Fedora 21, and with it the tech media got on its proverbial horse and started reports and reviews of the latest release. While it’s a good release and we won’t be reviewing it here — I already gave it a shakedown during the alpha and found it to be fantastic and completely worth the wait — there’s one thing that’s missing from Fedora 21 that I find rather disheartening.

    • New Releases

      • Alpine 3.1.0 released

        We are pleased to announce Alpine Linux 3.1.0, the first release in v3.1 stable series.

        This release is built with musl libc and is not compatible with v2.x and earlier, so special care needs to be taken when upgrading.

      • OpenELEC 5.0 RC2 Is Out, It’s an Awesome OS for Embedded Devices Already

        The embedded operating system built specifically to run the famous KODI (XBMC) media player solution, OpenELEC, has been upgraded to version 5.0 RC2 and a new image is now ready for testing and download.

    • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandriva Family

      • Lamborghini Tauri 88: The $6,000 Android phone

        Times are tough for a lot of us but apparently not for everybody according to Android Authority. They reported today on a new Android phone called the Lamborghini Tauri 88 that will be made by…you guessed it…the same folks that make Lamborghini cars. And it will sell for a measly $6000!

    • Red Hat Family

      • Analysis of the CVE-2013-6435 Flaw in RPM

        The RPM Package Manager (RPM) is a powerful command-line driven package management system capable of installing, uninstalling, verifying, querying, and updating software packages. RPM was originally written in 1997 by Erik Troan and Marc Ewing. Since then RPM has been successfully used in all versions of Red Hat Linux and currently in Red Hat Enterprise Linux.

      • Breaking down the Red Hat QA process

        Quality assurance (QA) is a critical aspect of software development, and Red Hat shares its best practices for testing Linux, KVM and OpenShift.

      • Fedora

        • Upgrading to Fedora 21 Workstation from Fedora 20

          Fedora 21 was released yesterday, and if you are running Fedora 20 as a desktop, you will probably want to upgrade to the latest and greatest version of Fedora. Luckily, there is a tool called FedUp that is the most simple way to upgrade to Fedora 21 Workstation.

        • Cubietruck: QEMU, KVM and Fedora

          Rich Jones previoulsy wrote here on how he got KVM working on Cubietruck — it was Fedora-19 timeframe. It wasn’t quite straight forwad then: you had to build a custom Kernel, custom U-Boot (Universal-Boot), etc.

        • Fedora 21 released…and websites too!
        • A Big Fedora Server SIG Welcome

          At today’s Fedora Server SIG Meeting, the present Fedora Server Working Group members elected to fill the seat recently-vacated by David Strauss. As of today, Dan Mossor (danofsatx on IRC) becomes a full member of the Fedora Server Working Group.

        • 11 Things to Do After You Install Fedora 21

          Fedora 21 was announced yesterday and it turned out to be a great release. Fedora comes pre-installed with a lot of applications. Users can start working as soon as they boot into Fedora. However, like most operating systems Fedora also needs some work to prepare it to handle your workload.

        • Fedora 21 KDE Screenshot Tour
        • Fedora 21 LXDE Screenshot Tour
        • Fedora Infrastructure release day retrospective

          Then, release day: proxy02 (a server in england) started being unable to cope with load and we removed it from DNS. Then, proxy01 started having problems. Since most services were slow in any case, we updated our status page that it was release day and to expect slowdowns. Most services (aside bodhi) were actually up and fine, just slower than normal. Some folks took this to mean we were completely down, but this was not the case. Next release we probibly will make a special banner telling people it’s release day and to expect things to be slow, but up and all working.

        • Fedora 21 MATE Screenshot Tour
        • Fedora 21 Linux Distro Tuned for Desktop, Server, Cloud

          The open-source Fedora 21 Linux distribution, launched Dec. 9, provides the first new edition of Red Hat’s community Linux distribution since the release of Fedora 20 in December 2013. Much has happened in the Fedora Linux community in the past year, and the Fedora 21 release marks a departure for the project from the way releases were built over the past decade. Instead of a single monolithic release that can be tailored for multiple use cases, Fedora 21 offers three distinct products intended for specific deployments. A Fedora Workstation release, intended for use as a desktop, includes a new set of tools to help developers use Fedora to build applications.

        • Fedora 21 greatest hits: non-Server non-live installs, fedup product behaviour

          So here’s a couple of things I’ve seen popping up multiple times with the Fedora 21 release. I thought I’d note them down here for my readers, Planet Fedora, and also as a handy link target for answering them in future.

        • Fedora 21 has Been Released!

          Here is the good news for you. The most anticipated Fedora 21 final is now made available for download.

        • Congratulations to the Fedora community on F21.

          This release has been a long time coming. It has been about a year since F20 release, and the pause we took as a community to embark upon the first steps of Fedora.next. I know many people have been anxious for the pause to be over. Finally the day has come and gone, and the release seems to be hitting on all cylinders!

        • Want to give BPG / libbpg a try? Here’s a repo for you.

          By now, most people will have heard about libbpg. Or maybe rather about the new BPG (better portable graphics) image format that was created by Fabrice Bellard, creator of qemu and ffmpeg, to possibly hopefully replace JPEG (and maybe even PNG) image formats one day.

        • Fedora 21 is here — Linux fans get an early Christmas gift
    • Debian Family

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Ubuntu Core to bring Snappy and transactional updates to the Cloud

            Mark Shuttleworth has announced a beta release of Ubuntu Core, a version of Ubuntu server for the Cloud that does not use debs or apt-get for system and software management.

          • Ubuntu Core Targets Container Deployment
          • Ubuntu Wants To Run Containers, Too

            Snappy, a lean Linux Ubuntu optimized for container operation, promises stronger security for Linux containers.

          • Ubuntu Team Launches Snappy Ubuntu Core for Container, Cloud Deployments

            The team at Canonical is even going so far as to call Snappy the “biggest revolution in Ubuntu since we launched our mobile initiative.” You can try the snappy Ubuntu Core alpha today, first on the Microsoft Azure cloud. Linux users can also try the snappy Ubuntu Core locally with KVM.

          • Can your computer run Ubuntu Core?

            Ubuntu Core beta, a version of Ubuntu for Cloud deployment that comes with snappy a system and application management utility with support for transaction updates, was released just a few hours ago.

            Though it was made available for testing on Microsoft’s Azure Cloud platform, Mark Shuttleworth said in a blog post that you can download a KVM image of Ubuntu Core that “you can run on any Linux machine.”

          • This Modular Smartphone Wants to Offer Ubuntu, SailfishOS

            Google’s Project Ara may soon have some competition in the modular smartphone stakes, with a Finnish startup — co-founded by a former Nokia Android X employee — pitching in.

          • Future Modular Phone Might Be Powered by Ubuntu Touch

            Everyone is talking about Ubuntu Touch on Meizu phones and that will happen in the next few months, but other less conventional hardware makers might be interested in the Ubuntu experience. At least, this is what the newly formed company Vsenn says it wants.

          • Ubuntu says it will make cloud server updates as simple as phone updates

            Canonical yesterday unveiled a new version of Ubuntu that’s designed for the cloud, saying it ditches the traditional apt-get system in favor of “transactional updates” that mimic the simplicity of phone updates.

            Ubuntu Core, the new version, “is a minimal server image with the same libraries as today’s Ubuntu, but applications are provided through a simpler mechanism,” Canonical said. Applications are more secure because they’re isolated from each other within containers, the company explained. Ubuntu Core is in beta on Microsoft Azure and can be run locally on the KVM hypervisor. It’s optimized to run in conjunction with Docker, software that automates the deployment of applications within containers.

          • Canonical Announces Snappy Ubuntu Core, A Transactionally Updated Flavor For The Cloud
          • Ubuntu 15.04 Gets Linux Kernel 3.18

            Ubuntu 15.04 (Vidid Vervet) is now under development and this is a time when new features and components are added to the distribution. The same is true for the Linux kernel, which has been updated to version 3.18.

          • Ubuntu 15.04 To Soon Land The Linux 3.18 Kernel

            Now that the Linux 3.18 kernel has been officially released, the Ubuntu kernel team will soon be landing the update inside the Ubuntu 15.04 archive.

          • Ubuntu Developer Tools Center Gets Renamed To Ubuntu Make

            Ubuntu Developer Tools Center / Ubuntu Make is a way to easily setup common developer tools on an Ubuntu Linux desktop installation. Right now this utility is just designed about easing Android application development but Ubuntu developers have plans for allowing Ubuntu Make to provide the tooling for other languages and environments.

          • Snappy Ubuntu Core Announced
  • Devices/Embedded

    • Top 10 Semi-Autonomous Robots That Run Linux
    • Top 10 Semi-Autonomous Robots That Run Linux (With Slideshow)

      many Linux-based robots for under $1,000, except for a handful of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), but we’re definitely heading in that direction. Like last year’s robot slide show, this year’s top 10 list is not a definitive compendium or a shopping guide. However, it may help show how Linux is enabling new capabilities in terrestrial robots, as well UAVs and autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs), which are essentially robots that fly or swim. (Click on Gallery to see the robot slide show.)

    • Intel extends its Internet-of-Things ecosystem

      Intel introduced a new IoT “end-to-end reference model” that includes a Linux-ready edge management platform, security, services, and ecosystem partners.

      The new reference platform, called the “Intel IoT Platform,” helps fill in the gaps in Intel’s growing ecosystem of Internet of Things gateways, cloud-based services, and endpoint devices like the Linux-based Intel Galileo SBC and Intel Edison module.

    • ODROID-C1 is a $35 quad-core, single-board Android/Linux PC

      When the Raspberry Pi team launched a tiny, low power computer priced at just $35, it was pretty remarkable. But that was 2 years ago, and while the Raspberry Pi has seen a few updates in that time, it’s still powered by the same single-core 700 MHz Broadcomm BCM2835 ARM11 processor.

    • Phones

      • Tizen

        • GENIVI Lifecycle Subsystem – Webinar Session 2 @ 9AM PST

          The Automotive Grade Linux (AGL) is a collaborative open source project developing a common Linux-based software stack for the connected car. GENIVI Alliance is a non-profit industry alliance committed to driving the broad adoption of an In-Vehicle Infotainment (IVI) open-source development platform. If you are interested in these two organisations work then there is a webinar on the GENIVI Lifecycle Subsystem, taking place at 9am PST.

        • MinnowBoard MAX Unboxing and Booting of Tizen:Common

          MinnowBoard MAX is an excellent open source embedded hardware platform based on Intel Atom E38xx 64-Bit Bay Trail System on Chips (SoC), which is quite versatile to our Tizen developer community. Our friend Leon Anavi got a MinnowBoard MAX board during the recent Tizen Developer Summit in Shanghai earlier this year and the first thing he did was port Tizen over to it !!!!

        • Tizen OS For Smart Life, Carsten Heitzler, Samsung #Slush2014

          Carsten Heitzler, who is the Principal Engineer at Samsung was onstage at Slush 2014 presenting Tizen OS for Smart Life. Slush is one of the biggest startup events of the year with over 13,000 attendees. Carsten discusses what is an Operating System and how Tizen is similar to other Linux distributions that are typically designed for server or the desktop environment, but in the case of Tizen it is much much more, with having the flexibility of being able to be used in things like Smart watches, Smart Cameras, TVs, Mobile Phones, Cars, IoT and anything that you can or want to fit an Operating System into, we have Tizen.

        • No release for the Tizen Samsung Z1 today, but over $1.7m worth of SM-Z130H parts imported to India

          All eyes have been looking towards the east for Samsung to launch the first Tizen based Smartphone, the Samsung Z1 (SM-Z130H), but the Smartphone failed to materialise. We are disappointed and saddened that their is an Information vacuum that will now be filled with speculation. Insiders close to the situation still feel there should be a release soon, but can not stipulate when that exactly could be.

        • Application Big Neon Clock for Samsung Gear 2 and Gear Neo
      • Android

        • A first look at Google’s Android Studio 1.0: Climbing out of the Eclipse kitchen sink

          Google has released version 1.0 of Android Studio, now the official IDE for Android.

          The development tool has been in preview since its announcement at the Google I/O conference in May 2013, and in beta since June this year. There are a variety of Android development tools available, but until now the official bundle has been based on the open source Eclipse project.

Free Software/Open Source

  • Open source for sensitive email

    We often discuss the many benefits of open source software. The single most important factor, the one that all benefits emerge from, is open. This is actually at the heart of what the software is, a community-driven software package with full transparency into the code base. Governments care about open source because it provides three powerful benefits: monetary savings, improved quality, and better security and privacy. This last benefit is often less-than-obvious, but equally important.

  • Web Browsers

    • Chrome

    • Mozilla

      • Mozilla and Telenor Announce WebRTC Competency Center to Advance WebRTC and Help Standardization

        Web Real-Time Communications (WebRTC) is changing the way people communicate over the Web by enabling developers to more easily integrate real-time communications on websites, mobile Web apps or video conferencing systems. WebRTC makes complex real-time communications technology available to everyone, driving a wave of new communications services that significantly improves user choice.

      • Mozilla Developer Experimenting With Firefox UI In HTML

        Paul Rouget of Mozilla has gone public with his experimental, proof-of-concept work to rebuild the Firefox user-interface within HTML.

        Rouget is hoping to one day replace the Firefox UI currently written in XUL with an HTML implementation. However, first the HTML needs to be made faster and enriched for constructing the entire Firefox UI. This would also allow for the Firefox UI to be eventually rendered by their next-generation Servo Engine rather than Gecko.

      • Firefox 35 Beta Arrives with Conference Call Features for Hello

        Mozilla has just released the Beta branch of the upcoming Firefox 35.x and it looks that they don’t plan anything out of the ordinary for it, although there are some improvements and various other changes ready.

  • BSD

    • OpenBSD Laptop

      I have been meaning to give OpenBSD a try for a while now. What has been attracting me to this operating system was: the big emphasis on security while still being functional, the urge to try another unix-like operating system that is not Linux, and of course Puffy. Here I will be going through the steps I took towards learning about OpenBSD and getting it running on my laptop. I hope that you can take bits and pieces out of this post to help you with your learning experience when you decide it is your time to venture off into the BSD world.

  • Project Releases

    • QEMU 2.2 Released With Its Many Changes

      Today is certainly a very exciting day for nearly all Linux users as covered in the Phoronix articles today. The latest good news is for server and virtualization users with the release of the slightly delayed QEMU 2.2.

  • Programming

Leftovers

  • Health/Nutrition

    • Europe Softens on GM Crops

      A new agreement in the European Union allows genetically engineered crops to be approved without member-state votes, likely allowing several GMO foods to enter the market.

  • Security

  • Defence/Police/Secrecy/Aggression

    • Magical thinking on terrorism

      But who’s doing the sloppy thinking here? Where is the evidence that more than a decade of war in Iraq and Afghanistan has brought us any closer to political solutions that can be sustained beyond the departure of U.S. forces? After spending over $1 trillion and deploying over 100,000 troops, are we any safer now?

  • Finance

  • Censorship

    • Web founder: Europe’s ‘right to be forgotten’ rule is dangerous

      Tim Berners-Lee thinks scrubbing false information off the Web is fine, but the truth should be preserved for reasons of free speech and history. Also: the robots are already here.

    • Russia’s Creeping Descent Into Internet Censorship

      When staffers at GitHub first saw the email from a Russian agency claiming dominion over the internet last month, they didn’t take it seriously. GitHub operates an enormously popular site where computer programmers share and collaborate on code, and to the Silicon Valley startup, an email requesting the removal of a list of suicide techniques from the site just didn’t seem believable.

  • Privacy

    • Let’s Encrypt – and Fix HTTPS While We’re At It

      A few weeks ago I wrote about the need for encryption – and the growing attacks against it by surveillance agencies worried about its efficacity. But how exactly can we implement that?

      One way is to adopt it at a personal level. That means using things likes PGP with Thunderbird, say. There are also a range of new email services that are aiming to offer easy-to-use encrypted email – something that cannot, alas, be claimed for the PGP+Thunderbird combo.

    • GCHQ Follows NSA Into Paranoia — Just As Julian Assange Predicted

      One of the knock-on effects of Snowden’s leaks is that the NSA is terrified there might be more whistleblowers, and has taken extreme action in an attempt to reduce the risk of that happening by stripping 100,000 people of their security clearances.

    • GCHQ sponsors ways to catch disgruntled ‘insiders about to go rogue’

      GCHQ is sponsoring ways of identifying disgruntled employees and those who might go on to be a security threat through their use of language in things like office emails.

      The Signals Intelligence organisation based on the outskirts of Cheltenham is financing a PhD research post, to the tune of £22,000 a year, at Lancaster University.

    • Facebook’s ‘emotional experiment’ is most shared academic research

      A paper revealing Facebook’s secret experiments on users received more online attention than any other scientific paper published this year, a new study finds.

    • Facebook is making employees read Chinese propaganda to impress Beijing

      To say Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg is on a China charm offensive would be a bit of an understatement. After speaking decent Mandarin during a thirty-minute Q&A in October and opening an office in Beijing (despite being blocked in China) in May, Zuckerberg is not only reading president Xi Jinping’s recently-released book, “The Governance of China,” he is reportedly buying it for Facebook employees.

    • Ho ho no! While you shop this season, beacons will spam you

      Marketers have found a new channel to abuse, but it doesn’t have to be this way

    • NSA Hacking of Cell Phone Networks

      For example, the US company Verint sells cell phone tracking systems to both corporations and governments worldwide. The company’s website says that it’s “a global leader in Actionable Intelligence solutions for customer engagement optimization, security intelligence, and fraud, risk and compliance,” with clients in “more than 10,000 organizations in over 180 countries.” The UK company Cobham sells a system that allows someone to send a “blind” call to a phone — one that doesn’t ring, and isn’t detectable. The blind call forces the phone to transmit on a certain frequency, allowing the sender to track that phone to within one meter. The company boasts government customers in Algeria, Brunei, Ghana, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, and the United States. Defentek, a company mysteriously registered in Panama, sells a system that can “locate and track any phone number in the world…undetected and unknown by the network, carrier, or the target.” It’s not an idle boast; telecommunications researcher Tobias Engel demonstrated the same capability at a hacker conference in 2008. Criminals can purchase illicit products to let them do the same today.

    • No One Has Privacy Now, Thanks to Super Cookies

      Our private information is being catalogued and used by government and private industry, both with and without our knowledge. There was no consequence, fine or penalty, for example, following the revelation late in 2011 that Carrier IQ collected massive amounts of data from millions of cell users. Why? Probably because cell users allowed that information to be collected.

  • Civil Rights

    • Savaged By Rotting Sheep

      It is quite a feat by the Scotsman, on the day when CIA torture is the headline news of the entire world, that the Scotsman runs a story about me that leaves out the fact I was sacked as Ambassador for being the first whistleblower on CIA torture and extraordinary rendition. Particularly given that I pointed that out to them when they called me.

    • Ex-ambassador Craig Murray to be SNP candidate

      Craig Murray was withdrawn as UK ambassador to Uzbekistan after the Foreign Office lost patience with his criticism of human rights abuses.

      [...]

      He was withdrawn as the UK ambassador to Uzbekistan in 2004 after the Foreign Office became frustrated with his vociferous criticism of human rights abuses in the former Soviet country.

    • Jack Straw – The Guilty Man Lies

      …Jack Straw is lying about his personal complicity in torture.

    • Equal Time for Torturers?

      But then NBC aired a long interview–nearly as long as the report on the Senate’s findings–with former CIA (and NSA) director Michael Hayden, who even disputes that the tactics in the report were torture. Anchor Brian Williams told viewers that Hayden was “accused in today’s report of providing misleading information in the past.”

      That’s a mild characterization; in fact, as the Washington Post (12/9/14) showed, Hayden’s 2007 Senate testimony about CIA torture was revealed to be full of distortions and evasions–from the number of prisoners held by the CIA to his claims that “punches and kicks…have never been employed” and that the “most serious injury” was bruising.

    • The man who did the most to fight CIA torture is still in prison

      The Senate Intelligence Committee released its report on CIA torture today, and the news is as bad as it could be. Of the 119 prisoners detained by the CIA, more than one in five were wrongfully imprisoned, while CIA interrogators ran through a host of barbaric tactics including Russian roulette, shoving hummus up a detainee’s rectum, and simply leaving targets to freeze to death in an unheated cell. And while all of it was happening, many officials within the agency harbored real doubts about whether the program was working at all.

    • How the CIA tortured its detainees

      A detainee at Guantanamo Bay in 2009. A detainee at Guantanamo Bay in 2009. Photograph: John Moore/Getty Images

      The CIA, and the Senate intelligence committee, would rather avoid the word “torture,” preferring euphemisms like “enhanced interrogation techniques” and “rendition, detention and interrogation program”. Many of the techniques employed by the CIA after capturing high-value targets have been documented in CIA memos released by the Obama administration, and in numerous leaks, including a report written by the International Committee of the Red Cross.

    • CIA Program Tortured Dozens To Produce Nearly Nothing In The Way Of Useful Intelligence

      Perhaps the most disheartening aspect of the Torture Report [pdf link] is the fact that the CIA clearly knew the methods weren’t producing usable intelligence but continued to use them anyway, all the while hiding the extent of its abuses from the rest of the goverment.

    • 5 Telling Dick Cheney Appearances in the CIA Torture Report

      It may come as little surprise that former Vice President Dick Cheney’s name crops up 41 times in the Senate report on the CIA’s use of “enhanced interrogation.”

    • Broken Windows And Broken Lives

      Apparently we’ve decided that we won’t tolerate broken windows any more. But we haven’t found the fortitude to do something about broken people. To put it plainly: just as neighborhood thugs could once break windows with impunity, police officers can generally kill with impunity. They can shoot unarmed men and lie about it. They can roll up and execute a child with a toy as casually as one might in Grand Theft Auto. They can bumble around opening doors with their gun hand and kill bystanders, like a character in a dark farce, with little fear of serious consequences. They can choke you to death for getting a little mouthy about selling loose cigarettes. They can shoot you because they aren’t clear on who the bad guy is, and they can shoot you because they’re terrible shots, and they can shoot you because they saw something that might be a weapon in your hand — something that can be, frankly, any fucking thing at all, including nothing.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality

    • The Broadband Industry Pretends To Be Worried About Your Soaring Bill In Attempt To Undermine Net Neutrality

      On the heels of Obama’s surprise support of Title II-based net neutrality rules last month, we noted that the broadband industry’s anti-Title II talking points (primarily that it will kill network investment and sector innovation) not only were just plain wrong, they were getting more than a little stale. That’s a problem for the industry given the increasingly bi-partisan support of real net neutrality rules and the groundswell of SOPA-esque activism in support of Title II. As such, the industry’s vast think tank apparatus quickly got to work on new talking points to combat net neutrality rules that actually might do something.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

12.10.14

Links 10/12/2014: Fedora 21, Ubuntu Core

Posted in News Roundup at 12:28 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

  • Databases

    • MariaDB Enterprise adds Suse Linux and IBM Power8 support

      MARIADB LAUNCHED the latest release of MariaDB Enterprise on Tuesday with support for tailored software configuration notifications and IBM Power8 hardware systems as well as Suse Linux distributions.

      “MariaDB Enterprise’s new Notification Service means that crawling through lengthy change logs and wondering if the latest security vulnerability will affect database performance are in the past,” the firm said.

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

    • Making good and solid templates

      Well this is exactly one of the most common mistakes. Making templates for Writer is NOT converting Word templates. Its building new templates from scratch using the best tool for it: LibreOffice. If you choose the short cut and converts Word templates to LibreOffice templates, you will get into trouble. Big trouble.

  • Funding

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

  • Public Services/Government

    • Taking A Stick To Flouters of EU Procurement Policies

      he EU has pretty strongly emphasized that government procurement should not prop up monopoly, yet the practice continues.

    • Report: 15 percent of IT tenders ask for brand instead of solution

      Each year 15 per cent of public administrations flout procurement rules by requesting specific brands and trademarks that prevent competition, shows a European study into 12.808 ICT procurement requests published over the past five years. Nearly a quarter of all awarded ICT requests got one single offer, also indicating there is a lack of competition when it comes to government ICT solutions.

  • Openness/Sharing

    • The New York Times R&D Lab releases Hive, an open-source crowdsourcing tool

      Today the R&D Lab is opening up the platform that powers the whole thing. Hive is an open-source framework that lets anyone build their own crowdsourcing project. The code responsible for Hive is now available on GitHub. With Hive, a developer can create assignments for users, define what they need to do, and keep track of their progress in helping to solve problems.

Leftovers

  • Health/Nutrition

    • Congress relaxes whole grain standards for schools

      Congress is taking some whole grains off the school lunch line.

      A massive year-end spending bill released Tuesday doesn’t allow schools to opt out of healthier school meal standards championed by first lady Michelle Obama, as House Republicans had sought. But it would ease standards that require more whole grains in school foods.

      The bill also would put off rules to lower sodium in school meals. Those rules were supposed to kick in by 2017.

  • Security

    • Tuesday’s security updates
    • Using IT Shouldn’t Be Like Hand-carrying Bags Of Money Through Gang-territory But It Is Thanks To M$ And Adobe

      “bugs that allow hackers to hijack PCs via Internet Explorer, Word and Excel files, and Visual Basic scripts.

      Everyone is urged to install the fixes, as well as a batch of updates from Adobe: a flaw in the Flash plugin is already being exploited by hackers to take over victims’ computers via the web.” It would be tedious if it weren’t terrifying but just about every month we learn what the malware-industry already knows, non-FREE software stinks. Just using it to do ordinary things the way they were intended to be used exposes one’s IT to all kinds of criminals. Don’t blame the victims. Blame the purveyors of this garbage, M$ and Adobe, who force the world to use their stuff only to be victimized.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • World Oil Politics

      If you wish to see a target of Saudi inaction, it is the United States, not Russia.

  • Finance

    • The Wages of Global Capitalism

      In the “developed world” wage growth in 2012 was 0.1 percent, and in 2013 it was 0.2 percent. Far from portending any economic “recovery,” that level of wage “growth” is rather called “wage stagnation.” In stunning contrast, wage growth in the major emerging growth economies was much better: 6.7 percent in 2012 and 5.9 percent in 2013.

    • Professor Wolff on The Real News Network: “The State of Workers’ Wages around the World”

      Economist Richard Wolff compares the stagnation of wages in the U.S. for the past 30 years to the increase in wages in emerging markets and explains why capital left America.

  • Civil Rights

    • “Rectal Feeding,” Threats to Children, and More: 16 Awful Abuses From the CIA Torture Report

      On Tuesday morning, the Senate intelligence committee released an executive summary of its years-long investigation into the CIA’s detention and interrogation program. President George W. Bush authorized the so-called “enhanced interrogation” program after the 9/11 attacks. The United States government this week has warned personnel in facilities abroad, including US embassies, to be ready in case protests erupt in response.

    • The Bush Administration Homicides

      The Justice Department may not be prosecuting the torture-memo writers, but John Sifton asks, what about those who killed an estimated 100 detainees during interrogations?

    • Hayden’s testimony vs. the Senate report

      A look at then-CIA Director Michael V. Hayden’s testimony to the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence on April 12, 2007, compared with the extensive summary on the CIA’s interrogation and detention program, released on Tuesday.

    • Senate Report on Torture

      Can I just say how pleasant it is to be vindicated ten years after being sacked by Jack Straw for opposing the torture and extraordinary rendition programme – which Blair and Straw claimed I was inventing.

    • Washington Post Does Not Call It Torture When We Torture

      The early report at the Washington Post website about the Senate Intelligence Committee’s investigation of CIA torture is gripping, well-documented and sickening. But one thing jumps out: The paper doesn’t use the word “torture” to describe the CIA’s torture program. And that’s not an accident.

    • Conservative Media’s Celebration Of Torture

      Conservative media celebrated the effectiveness of torture in response to news that the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee would release its report on the Central Intelligence Agency’s (CIA) detention and interrogation program, attacking the Senate for releasing the report and disputing the report’s findings. Military and interrogation experts have emphasized that torture is an ineffective interrogation technique, and human rights groups support the release of the report.

    • Inside the CIA’s Sadistic Dungeon

      The CIA was alerted of allegations that anal exams at Cobalt were conducted with “excessive force.” An attorney was asked to follow up, but no records indicate what happened next. Agency records said that one of the detainees housed at Cobalt, Mustafa al-Hawsawi, was later diagnosed with chronic hemorrhoids, an anal fissure, and symptomatic rectal prolapse.

    • David Hicks heckles George Brandis and claims government knew about his torture

      Former Australian detainee at Guantanamo Bay makes claims after damning report into CIA torture methods revealed

    • Architects Of CIA Torture Program Raked In $81 Million, Report Reveals

      Two psychologists were paid $81 million by the CIA to advise on and help implement its brutal interrogation program targeting detainees in the war on terror, according to the Senate torture report summary released Tuesday.

      The contract psychologists are identified with pseudonyms — Grayson Swigert and Hammond Dunbar — like most of the individuals named in the Senate Intelligence Committee’s report on the CIA program. Published reports dating back to 2007, however, identify the two men as James Elmer Mitchell and Bruce Jessen, both former members of the military.

    • 17 Disgraceful Facts Buried In The Senate’s 600 Page Torture Report

      “In 2006, the value of the CIA’s base contract with the company formed by the psychologists with all options exercised was in excess of $180 million; the contractors received $81 million prior to the contract’s termination in 2009. In 2007, the CIA provided a multi-year indemnification agreement to protect the company and its employees from legal liability arising out of the program. The CIA has since paid out more than $1 million pursuant to the agreement.” [Page 11]

    • CIA torture: Fox News says ‘the US is awesome’ – and torture report is just ‘one last shot at Bush’

      Fox News has condemned the release of a damning report into the CIA’s use of torture as a political manoeuvre designed to show Americans “how we’re not awesome”.

      The broadcaster’s National Security Analyst K.T. McFarland argued that the techniques were both “legal and justified” by the 9/11 terror attacks.

      And she denounced the publication of the Senate Intelligence Committee report as a move made by Democrats to “do harm” to the country by angering terrorists.

12.09.14

Links 9/12/2014: Fedora 21 and Torture Report Are Out

Posted in News Roundup at 12:28 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Xojo: A Linux development suite that doesn’t really support Linux

    If a company is going to support Linux… it needs to actually freaking support Linux.

    In one of my past lives, I was a software developer. And even though I no longer code for a living, I still find tinkering with various languages, IDEs, and frameworks more fun than I probably should. Truth be told, I consider playing with a new development environment to be a bit of a hoot. (Yes. I just wrote “bit of a hoot.” That’s how confident I am in my own masculinity.)

    I’m also not the kind of guy to be prejudiced for – or against – any particular language. Python? Awesome. C++? Tons of fun (in an “I-like-to-hurt-myself” kind of way). Pascal, BASIC, Smalltalk and JavaScript? All delightful. I like ‘em all… for the most part.

  • Do you need programming skills to learn Linux?

    A few months ago I took the Introduction to Linux course offered through edX. It’s an 18 chapter course with lots of reading, some videos, and a casual level of testing your knowledge. I wrote about the first six chapters and how the course works in, What happens when a non-coder tries to learn Linux.

    My main goal in taking the course was to get a better, high level understanding of Linux. I didn’t have to install Linux but wanted to, so before I started chapter 7, I did. I wanted to test out some of the things I was learning, and ‘learning is doing’ to a large extent.

  • New Linux Trojan Found, Part of Turla

    The top story today is the discovery of a new Linux trojan that experts say could have been in place for years. Kaspersky Lab is saying this newly discovered Linux malware is part of the Turla campaign indicating that the culprits aren’t limiting themselves to Windows. And that’s not all that’s unusual about this code.

  • The ‘Penquin’ Turla
  • Breaking: Stealth “Turla” Malware Infects Unknown Number of Linux Systems

    The Linux Turla is a new piece of malware designed to infect only Linux computers, which has managed to remain relatively hidden until now and has the potential of doing a lot of harm. Unfortunately, very little is known about it or how to fix it.

  • Powerful, highly stealthy Linux trojan may have infected victims for years
  • Server

    • Intel Becomes Newest OpenDaylight SDN/NFV Project Member
    • Intel Ups Investment in OpenDaylight SDN, NFV Effort

      The chip maker, which sees SDN and NFV as growth areas in the data center, is now a Platinum member of the vendor-based consortium it helped found.
      Intel, one of the founding members of the OpenDaylight Project, is increasing its commitment to the software-defined networking standards body.

      Intel is joining such tech vendors as IBM, Cisco Systems, Dell, Hewlett-Packard and Juniper Networks as a Platinum member of OpenDaylight, a move that increases the chip maker’s financial backing of the group and includes the adding of an Intel official on the board of directors.

    • Rocket vs Docker and The Myth of the “Simple, Lightweight Enterprise Platform”

      With seemingly everyone who’s ever written an app or booted a VM jumping on the cargo ship at the moment, it’s hardly surprising to see the launch this week of Rocket; a credible challenger to Docker in the container space.

    • New data center OS allows single-source command for Linux servers

      Mesosphere, a startup that provides commercial support for the Apache Mesos cluster management system, has debuted a “data center operating system.”

      Mesosphere DCOS uses the Mesos project to gang together machines running Linux, whether hosted in any number of clouds (Amazon, Google, Microsoft) or running on nearly any kind of infrastructure (bare metal, OpenStack, VMware).

      Widely deployed at scale by companies like Twitter and Airbnb, Mesos has a proven track record. However, Mesosphere DCOS is designed to manage not only the applications but also the systems they run on.

    • Mesosphere Raises $36M for Application Data Center OS

      Lead commercial sponsor behind Apache Mesos project announces new commercial effort that leverages open source components as well as its own ‘secret sauce.’

    • Mesosphere Grabs $36M in Funding for Data Center OS Built on Apache Mesos

      The B round brings Mesosphere’s total funding to approximately $50 million and the company says it plans to accelerate investment in global growth.

  • Kernel Space

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments/WMs

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

      • The Pillars of KDE “Now”

        Oxygen, Sonnet (remember that?), Solid, Plasma, Akonadi and Decibel… This list in one way or another might be wrong. Not so cool. But you know what is cool? People remembered the Pillars of KDE 4 existed and the effect they had.

  • Distributions

    • Ask Slashdot: Paying For Linux Support vs. Rolling Your Own?
    • Reviews

      • Linux Mint 17.1 review—less change is good change

        While most of what’s new in Mint 17.1 will be seen in the updated desktops, there are some common components to both Cinnamon and MATE. While accessing some of these new tools varies slightly by desktop, the results are the same in both. Right away, you’ll notice the login screen is among these new and improved elements.

      • ​Best Linux Desktop of 2014: Linux Mint 17.1

        Personally, I prefer Cinnamon — so that is what I used. With Cinnamon 2.4, you get a few minor new features. For instance, you can set directories to different colors to make them more visible in Nemo, the Cinnamon file manager. Cinnamon has also been tightened and cleaned up. The result is a faster, more memory efficient desktop. The one bug I’ve seen to date is that some desktop icons, such as the computer, can’t have their names changed. So, for example, I can’t rename “Computer” to “Blitz,” my Dell desktop’s real name.

        Over all, though, that’s like complaining about a scratch on a 1955 Mercedes 300 SLR Racer: Mint’s still the best available desktop today.

    • Screenshots

    • Red Hat Family

      • Fedora

        • Fedora 21 Release Review: An Impressive Developer Workstation

          Fedora is among the most respected Linux-based distributions. Known as a bleeding edge operating system it offers the latest technologies at the earliest stages. It’s also known for working with upstream projects instead of patching things downstream.

          Fedora displays both qualities due to the fact that Fedora/Red Hat developers are among the leading contributors to many major open source projects, including the Linux kernel; they work for everyone and not just for their own distribution.

          Fedora 21 has just been released and I have been playing with the beta for a while. There are now three editions of Fedora: server, workstation and cloud. Since I am using it for my desktop I downloaded and installed the Workstation.

        • Fedora 21 Officially Released

          One year after the introduction of Fedora 20 and going through many changes this year with the Fedora.Next initiative (and going through multiple delays in delivering F21), Fedora 21 finally greets the world today. Fedora 21 features all of the latest GNOME 3.14 software, is powered by the Linux 3.17 kernel, and has a ton of other improvements and changes as noted in dozens of Phoronix articles. Fedora 21 Server users also have Docker improvements, cloud computing enhancements, and the new Cockpit console.

        • Announcing Fedora 21!
        • Fedora 21 Now Available, Delivers the Flexibility of Fedora.next
    • Debian Family

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Ubuntu Developer Tools Center Renamed To Ubuntu Make, Sees New Release

            Ubuntu Developer Tools Center, a project to allow easy installation of common developer tools, has reached version 0.2. With this release, the project was renamed to Ubuntu Make, based on name proposals from the community.

          • Ubuntu Core Changes The Game For Container Operating Systems

            This last couple of weeks has seen some tension within the Linux Container world as CoreOS launched its Rocket container and questioned Docker’s longer term motives. Adding fuel to the fire today comes Canonical with its new “snappy” Ubuntu core. The new rendition of of Ubuntu is a minimal server image that shares the same libraries as today’s Ubuntu but via a simpler mechanism. Most importantly, the snappy approach allows Ubuntu to provide stronger security guarantees for applications. Snappy apps and Ubuntu Core itself can be upgraded atomically and rolled back if needed – an approach to systems management that lends itself to container deployments.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • TI expands IoT cloud ecosystem and simplifies code development with open-source Energia support

      DALLAS, Dec. 9, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — Texas Instruments (TI) (NASDAQ: TXN) is expanding its third party ecosystem of Internet of Things (IoT) cloud service providers. With 10 new members since launching in April 2014, the TI IoT cloud ecosystem supports multiple cloud options with a total of 18 companies. Ecosystem members deliver solutions to help customers get their TI-based IoT solutions connected to the cloud quickly. The new members include Intamac/Kynesim, Keen IO/Technical Machine, Micrium, Octoblu, PTC, PubNub, Temboo and Weaved.

    • Phones

      • Tizen

        • To Leak or Not to Leak? That is the Question ….. Samsung Z1 Tizen SM-Z130H

          The reasoning of no reveal is that Samsung’s launch strategy is secret, like many companies, but it looks like they will do a “soft launch” ie a press event and a URL to where you can buy this product in India, and I don’t know how the Samsung marketing machine will position the Tizen phone and how they will convey some of the Information in our possession, so in an effort to not damage the Samsung marketing strategy for Tizen we have chosen NOT to reveal anything. It is hoped that Samsung appreciate this move.

      • Android

        • Google pushes ‘go’ on Android Studio

          Worried Oompa-Loompas are questioning security guards and combing the wilds of Mountain View after it was discovered that Google has allowed a product, the Android Studio IDE, to escape from the Chocolate Factory’s near-impenetrable Beta compound.

        • Google Launches Android Studio 1.0, Offers Migration Path from Eclipse

          At the 2013 Google I/O conference, the company announced Android Studio, and characterized it as a new development environment that would make it much easier for Android developers to build apps. Today, Google has announced the official version of Android Studio 1.0. It’s available now for download as a stable release on the Android Developer site. Here are more details on how this will provide big benefits for developers.

Free Software/Open Source

  • Open source all over the world

    Phil Shapiro. “I administrate 28 Linux work stations at a small library in D.C. I consider these folks my coworkers and colleagues. And it’s wonderful to know that we can all feed into the energy and share ideas. My main interests are how FOSS intersects with dignity, and enhancing dignity.

  • A look back at open source in 2014

    The year 2014 will be marked as one where open source changed for me. It didn’t change overnight or even very rapidly, but in July I noticed that the open source of today was not what I imagined it would be.

    And this can be a good thing.

    When I starting working full time with open source, back in 2001, the idea was to build a lot of free software. It reminded me of when I got my first computer back in 1978 (a TRS-80) and the environment encouraged a lot of code sharing. In those days, it was easy to differentiate open source from commercial software, and the thought was to replace the expensive walled gardens of proprietary code with better, freer, alternatives. But from a business perspective we were still in search of a business model.

  • SaaS/Big Data

    • Bill Rowan, VMware’s New US Federal Lead, on Open Source’s Evolution and Data Analytics Collaborations

      There is a great place for the OpenStack solutions, even though it may not be a fit for everybody. In my opinion, the item for greater consideration is that the government will need to acquire and retain talent who can help them with the programming aspects of OpenStack. But we will continue to contribute to the OpenStack initiatives as we have in the past and allow customers to leverage our solutions inside those OpenStack environments.

  • Funding

    • Nginx gets $20M, because an open-source web server is just the beginning

      Developers know Nginx as a popular open-source web server they can use to run websites. But some of the people behind Nginx, at the startup by the same name, aren’t content with that achievement on its own. They want to build a big company around the technology.

      Which is why investors are now giving the startup $20 million, Nginx announced in a statement today.

  • BSD

    • FreeNAS 9.3 Released

      Here’s an early Christmas present for you all: FreeNAS 9.3!

      This FreeNAS update is a significant evolutionary step from previous FreeNAS releases, featuring a simplified and reorganized Web User Interface, support for Microsoft ODX and Windows 2012 clustering, better VMWare integration, including VAAI support, a new and more secure update system with roll-back functionality, and hundreds of other technology enhancements. We’re quite proud of it and excited to make it publicly available.

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

  • Public Services/Government

    • Home Office Locked Into £330m Oracle Contract

      The Home Office is obliged to continue paying Oracle for ERP services until 2016, even as it signs a cost-cutting shared services ERP deal

      The Home Office has disclosed that it is locked into a £330 million contract with Oracle for enterprise resource planning (ERP) software, which may conflict with government efforts to cut back-office IT costs by shifting to shared services centres.

      The contract, signed in 2009 under the previous Labour government, provides 29, 518 users with access to Oracle E-Business Suite (EBS), and is set to expire in January 2016, according to a statement published in response to a Freedom of Information (FoI) request.

  • Standards/Consortia

    • Is Google coming back to the open community on document formats?

      At the ODF Plugfest in London, Google’s head of open source told the audience that work once once again in progress extending OpenDocument support in Google’s products.

      At the opening of the event, Magnus Falk, deputy CTO for HM Government, told the audience that the decision to adopt ODF (alongside HTML and PDF) as the government’s required document format is now well in hand. When asked by an audience member about various government agencies that currently require submissions from the public in Microsoft-only formats, Falk said that all such departments must make a migration plan now for how they will achieve use of the required formats.

Leftovers

  • Video-game pioneer Ralph Baer dies

    Video-game pioneer Ralph Baer has died at the age of 92.

    Mr Baer is widely seen as the “father of video games” for his pioneering work that led to the creation of the Odyssey games console.

    The Odyssey, licensed to TV-maker Magnavox, went on sale in 1972 and inspired many other firms to make their own consoles.

  • Atari’s Co-Founder Explains Why Pong’s Ball Wasn’t Round

    I really have some concerns, though, about privacy. Every kid has the right to have their teenage years forgotten. And I think we’re losing that. I can honestly say that I’m glad that my teenage years are mostly forgotten.

  • Security

  • Defence/Police/Secrecy/Aggression

    • “Dead bodies and wasted money”: How I learned firsthand the worst lesson of war

      Westerners like to dignify war as we can with the resources that we have, to make it sound like a chess game or science project with ascertainable goals, well-delineated procedures and verifiable conclusions. We actually have war colleges and war diplomas. People study military science and take war-leadership classes. Yet what a country actually does while at war – whether that country is an advanced nation or medieval relic – is try to survive; and if the war is truly about survival they throw everything in their possession at the enemy, flailing arms desperately, chucking money, bullets, grenades and prayers in the hope that they hit something. And you know what? Sometimes they do. But it takes a peculiar leap of faith to take this for knowledge or expertise. It takes an even more precious naiveté to pay people for the wisdom derived from collective stupidity.

    • Wrong-on-Iraq Pundit Gives Lessons in Media Accountability

      It’s helpful that Lowry brought up white male privilege on ABC. It’s hard to know what else you might call a system that enables people like Lowry to continue to appear on television as some sort of expert. Not everyone gets to be so lucky.

    • Establishment Media’s Illusion of Debate Supports US Strikes against Islamic State

      A new study authored by Peter Hart at Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting (FAIR) found that in the lead up to the decision to increase military action against ISIL, there were very few anti-war voices in the television and the media in general. The FAIR study found that during a crucial two-week period in September 2014, only six out of the 205 interviewed sources opposed the U.S. intervening to stop the advance of ISIL. On well-known Sunday talk shows only 1 out of 89 guests was against the US going to war to stop ISIL. On television, there were many debates involving the advance of ISIL and the position of the United States. All of the debates revolved around the mechanics of the war, such as drone strikes and how many troops to send, not specifically that the war should not be happening. In defense of the media, after several beheadings, public opinion turned positive toward US involvement.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • North Carolina Newspapers Mostly Silent As ALEC And Koch Brothers Rewrite History

      North Carolina newspapers have largely missed the connection between a Koch-funded education non-profit organization contracted to help shape new statewide history curriculum materials, and the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), the conservative model legislation mill that wrote the bill mandating the new course work.

      In 2011, the North Carolina legislature passed a bill known as the “Founding Principles Act,” which would require high school students to pass a course on “Founding Philosophy and the Founding Principles of government for a free people.” The bill was generated as a piece of model legislation by ALEC, a conservative group that brings corporations and politicians together to vote on and construct bills to be used in multiple states. According to the Huffington Post, North Carolina’s Department of Public Instruction, which has been tasked with drawing up the curriculum required by the Founding Principles Act, proposed on December 3 to “‘highly recommend’ social studies material from the Bill of Rights Institute,” an organization which “receives funding from the billionaire Koch brothers.”

  • Privacy

    • Press release: Permission granted for judicial review of DRIPA

      A judicial review of the Data Retention and Investigatory Powers Act (DRIPA) has been granted permission by Mr Justice Lewis in the High Court today. Open Rights Group (ORG) and Privacy International (PI) intervened in the case, which was brought by Tom Watson MP and David Davis MP, represented by Liberty. ORG and PI have now been given permission to make further submissions in advance of the next hearing.

  • Civil Rights

    • The victim-blaming hypocrisy of Rep. Peter King

      In case you have been living under a rock this week, a grand jury in New York City borough of Staten Island declined to return an indictment this week against a police officer who put a chokehold on a man who was allegedly committing the crime of selling untaxed cigarettes. This chokehold resulted in the man’s death. The man’s name was Eric Garner, and the chokehold and subsequent application of pressure to his head and neck by the same officer directly led to Garner’s death.

      There is full video of the incident. None of the facts are in dispute. The officer in question had three colleagues with him. Garner was unarmed. Unlike the case in Ferguson where officer Darren Wilson killed Michael Brown with no indictment, there is no way that Daniel Pantaleo, the New York City police officer in question, could have claimed that he felt his life was in danger. The chokehold he used was banned as a tactic by the NYPD. Even worse, Garner complained no fewer than 11 times that he was unable to breathe because of Pantaleo’s actions. And yet no indictment was returned against the officer who committed an unequivocal homicide.

    • And Now, to Discuss Police Killings: Rush Limbaugh?
    • Torture Enablers Spin Unreleased Senate Report

      The fact that former CIA officials might object to a report critical of the CIA isn’t that surprising. But these accounts, along with the stories stoking fears about attacks on US facilities as payback for the Senate report, serve to obscure the more important findings about CIA torture and deception: As Marcy Wheeler (Emptywheel, 4/2/14) has noted, there is plenty of evidence of the CIA lying to Congress about torture. Wheeler (2/22/10) has also shown that Michael Hayden has lied to Congress too, which is something to keep in mind as journalists bring him on television to discuss whether or not the agency ever misled anyone.

    • The Most Gruesome Moments in the CIA ‘Torture Report’

      Interrogations that lasted for days on end. Detainees forced to stand on broken legs, or go 180 hours in a row without sleep. A prison so cold, one suspect essentially froze to death. The Senate Intelligence Committee is finally releasing its review of the CIA’s detention and interrogation programs. And it is brutal.

    • Here are the names of the 119 prisoners who were detained in the CIA’s secret prisons program

      The Senate Intelligence Committee report on the CIA’s interrogation and detention program for the first time released the names of all the prisoners who were detained in secret prisons around the world. Of the 119, 20 names were previously unknown.

    • The Debate about Torture We’re Not Having: Exploitation

      Partly by design, the debate about torture that has already started in advance of tomorrow’s Torture Report release is focused on efficacy, with efficacy defined as obtaining valuable intelligence. Torture apologists say torture provided intelligence that helped to find Osama bin Laden. Torture critics refute this, noting that any intelligence CIA got from those who were tortured either preceded or long post-dated the torture.

      Even setting aside my belief that, even if torture “worked” to elicit valuable intelligence, it still wouldn’t justify it, there’s a big problem with pitching the debate in those terms.

    • Senate report: CIA misled public on torture
    • Live Coverage of the Senate Torture Report

      One of the worst myths official Washington and its establishment media have told itself about the torture debate is that the controversy is limited to three cases of waterboarding at Guantánamo and a handful of bad Republican actors. In fact, a wide array of torture techniques were approved at the highest levels of the U.S. Government and then systematically employed in lawless US prisons around the world – at Bagram (including during the Obama presidency), CIA black sites, even to US citizens on US soil. So systematic was the torture regime that a 2008 Senate report concluded that the criminal abuses at Abu Ghraib were the direct result of the torture mentality imposed by official Washington.

    • CIA torture report released: latest news

      • CIA lied to Senate and White House on torture methods: report

    • Obama Would Not — Cannot — Deem Any Activities Authorized by Gloves Come Off Finding Illegal

      Just 3 days after he assumed the Presidency, a drone strike Obama authorized killed as many as 11 civilians, including one child, and gravely injured a 14 year old boy, Farim Qureshi. And several years into his Administration, Obama ordered the CIA to kill American citizen Anwar al-Awlaki with no due process. As far as we know, both of those things were done using that very same Finding, the Finding that Romero would like Obama to declare authorized war crimes.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • We’re Back at the World Intellectual Property Organization to Fight For Users’ Rights at the UN

      EFF is in Geneva this week at the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), where the organization’s Standing Committee on Copyright and Related Rights is gathered to debate proposals for a treaty to give new legal rights to broadcasters, and for instruments that would standardize copyright limitations and exceptions for libraries, archives, educators and researchers.

    • The True Cost Of Corporate Sovereignty For The EU: €3.5bn Already Paid, €30bn Demanded – Even Before TAFTA/TTIP

      While the debate about the inclusion of a corporate sovereignty chapter in TAFTA/TTIP continues to rage in the EU, the European Commission insists there’s nothing to worry about here. In a recent article published in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (original in German), the new European Commissioner for Trade, Cecilia Malmström, wrote that EU member states have signed 1400 agreements with other nations that included corporate sovereignty provisions — implying that such investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) elements are perfectly normal, don’t cause problems, and won’t cause problems.

    • Copyrights

      • Copyright Hub Goes Public: Where’s the Public Domain?

        It’s certainly hugely welcome that the technology behind the Hub will be open sourced. Unfortunately, that’s about the most open part of the new site: the rest of it is all about asking “permission”, a word that figures frequently throughout the site. Of course, given that this is a copyright hub, and that it has been funded by the creative industries, that’s perhaps understandable. But it is also rather retrogressive – unlike the open-sourcing of the code – and unbalanced.

        One of the most important shifts in the creative world in recent years has been to open licensing, encouraging a *permissionless* approach to building on the work of others, which of course is what has taken place for most of human history. Indeed, the Copyright Hub tends to treat copyright as if it were the eternal background of creativity, when in fact nothing could be further from the truth. For most of human history (and prehistory), nothing like copyright existed or was felt necessary. Copyright is not natural, but a modern aberration when viewed in the larger historical context.

        This skewed view of the world makes itself felt throughout the site. For example, in the Discover section, where we “find out all about copyright”, there is not a single mention of the fact that copyright is temporary, or that the ultimate state of creativity is as part of the great commons known as the public domain. Indeed, I couldn’t find any reference to the public domain anywhere in my quick look through most of the Web pages.

      • UK Users Need 27 Services to Get Most Popular Films, Report Finds

        If UK Internet users want access to most recent popular film content they’ll need to remember a lot of passwords. A new survey from KPMG has found that while overall availability is good, users wanting the best will have to use a patience-challenging 27 services.

12.08.14

Links 9/12/2014: Greg Kroah-Hartman Interview, Fedora 21 Imminent

Posted in News Roundup at 10:55 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Marines ask Northrop Grumman to switch G/ATOR radar computers from Windows to Linux software

    U.S. Marine Corps leaders are ready to switch software operating systems in a radar system designed to protect Marines on attack beaches from rockets, artillery, mortars, cruise missiles, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and other low observables.

  • Linux Mobile-Desktop Convergence

    Over the past couple of years there has been talk of mobile-desktop convergence from various mobile and desktop OS providers. As a general concept, this sounds fantastic! Unfortunately once we dive into things a bit deeper, it appears this is easier said than done.

  • Server

    • Docker: Here, take the wheel – now YOU can run your own containers

      Docker is all the rage among hip startups and early adopters, but Docker the company would like to get its tech into enterprises, too – which is why it’s working on adapting its hosted Docker Hub service into a product specifically targeting large business customers.

    • Docker Founder Must Right His Ship

      Success can build a feedback loop that sustains its own momentum, making those who are successful certain they are doing the right thing. I don’t want to charge Docker with such hubris, but recent events illustrate why open source code projects function the way they do.

  • Kernel Space

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments/WMs

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

      • Randa Meetings 2014 – Another Great Success

        It’s been quite some time since the Randa Meetings 2014 and even this year’s edition of the KDE Community Summit called Akademy has already happened, but it’s still nice to look back and see what was accomplished at this KDE Tech Summit in the middle of the Swiss Alps.

      • On porting Fcitx KCM module to KF5

        Porting Fcitx KCM to KF5 is not that easy. It’s not only about porting kcm itself, but also porting missing part of fcitx-qt5 to Qt5 (mostly widgets). The old pkgconfig file is quite messed up, so I decided to experiment with extra-cmake-modules (ECM) a bit.

      • Dolphin Overlay Icons for ownCloud Sync Client

        Our recent ownCloud Client 1.7.0 release contains the new feature of overlay icons in GNOME nautilus, MacOSX and Windows. That is nice, but that makes us as old KDE guys sad as Dolphin was missing on the list.

      • Why do(n’t) you use Activities?

        On our quest for improving the concept of Virtual Desktops and Activities on the KDE Desktop, we once again ask you to share your experiences.

    • GNOME Desktop/GTK

  • Distributions

    • New Releases

      • Ultimate Edition 4.3

        What is Ultimate Edition 4.3? Ultimate Edition 4.3 was built from the ground up debootstrapped from the Ubuntu 14.04 Trusty Thar tree using Tmosb (TheeMahn’s Operating System Builder) which is also included in this release. This release is a Long Term Supported (LTS) release, supported until the year 2019. This release is most certainly worthy of the Ultimate Edition title. I personally hate KDE, and found it very visually attractive in all its “Wobbly Windowness” that I miss from the Mate desktop environment. I must admit I do miss the eyecandy that it provides off the rip. I have included many, many tools I am constructing that reside under the hood of virtually all Ultimate Edition releases, most newer and upgraded.

      • SparkyLinux 3.6 LXDE, MATE, Razor-Qt & Xfce

        I am happy to announce the fourth and the last this year iso images of SparkyLinux 3.6 “Annagerman” LXDE, MATE, Razor-Qt and Xfce. At the beginning, I’d like to thank to all of our small but strong community members for their help with searching and solving bugs and problems.

    • Screenshots

    • Red Hat Family

    • Debian Family

      • Derivatives

        • Devuan: Unto Us a Fork Is Born

          We knew it was possible; the signs were all there. The Systemd Inferno, after all, had been raging for far too long.

          But more than a few of us were still holding out hope. “Things will surely get better,” we thought.

          Then the news came. The rumored Debian fork has now become real, and its name is “Devuan.”

        • MX-14.3 Is an OS Based on Debian That Can Bring Old Computers Back to Life

          MX-14, a fast, lightweight, and easy-to-install Linux Live CD distribution based on Debian stable, for Intel-AMD x86-compatible systems, has been upgraded to version 14.3 and is now available for download.

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Ubuntu 15.04 to Get GTK+ 3.14 and Updated GNOME Packages

            The Ubuntu devs are considering upgrading the GTK+ packages to the latest 3.14 version, which was made available just a couple of months ago, a decision that would really help a number of other Ubuntu flavors as well.

          • Flavours and Variants

            • Linux Mint 17.1 Freshens Up Linux Desktop

              Linux Mint 17.1, which was officially released on Nov. 29, provides users of the popular Linux desktop with an incremental update and some additional polish. Code-named Rebecca, Linux Mint 17.1 offers a choice of desktop user interfaces, the two primary ones being MATE and Cinnamon. The MATE desktop is a fork of the GNOME 2 desktop environment. The GNOME Linux desktop community moved to the GNOME 3 desktop in 2011, a move that some desktop users did not embrace. In the Linux Mint 17.1 MATE edition, support has been added for the Compiz window manager, which can enable a desktop with multiple special effects for window transitions and events. The Cinnamon desktop, which was created by Linux Mint creator Celement Lefebvre, provides users with a familiar GNOME 2 look but also adds some of the advanced capabilities of newer GNOME releases. Linux Mint 17.1 builds on the innovations that first debuted in Linux Mint 17 earlier this year, with usability, interface and performance gains in several areas. In this slide show, eWEEK takes a look at some of the improvements in the Linux Mint 17.1 release.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • How to get the most out of a Raspberry Pi? Your tech questions answered

      From robotics kits and ultrasound sensors to Arduino-based accessories and Lego Mindstorms

    • Tinkering with the Raspberry Pi A+

      The Raspberry Pi team is on fire (in a good way), making new Raspberry Pi models faster than we can review them.

    • $6 quad core SoC targets low cost 4K set-top boxes

      Allwinner unveiled a $6 “H3″ SoC targeting $35 to $50 OTT STBs, featuring four Cortex-A7 cores, a Mali-400 GPU, 4K HDMI output, and 5MP camera support.

      [...]

      Android and Linux are the most likely platforms here.

    • Phones

      • Tizen

        • Samsung’s Gear VR headset is on sale now for $199

          The Gear VR, Samsung’s virtual reality headset, is now on sale through AT&T and Samsung’s US sites. The $199 headset fits around a Galaxy Note 4 smartphone, turning it into a mobile VR display. It was originally announced in September, but it’s so far only been slated for a vague early December launch, though it’s been available to try at a handful of malls around the country. The Gear VR was built in partnership with Oculus, and it incorporates a tracking sensor from the first Oculus Rift development kit, as well as a custom “Oculus Home” interface app. Unlike the Rift, though, it’s wireless and fairly light, and if you’ve already got a Note 4, it’s somewhat cheaper (if you don’t, you’ll have to add an extra $800 to the price above.) While it’s more polished than the current version of the Oculus Rift, however, it’s still an “Innovator Edition,” so be warned that you’re still essentially participating in a mass beta test of virtual reality.

        • Tizen DevLab and portathon coming to London 13 December
      • Android

        • A hacker’s journey: freeing a phone from the ground up, first part

          Every once in a while, an unexpected combination of circumstances ends up enabling us to do something pretty awesome. This is the story of one of those times. About a year ago, a member of the Replicant community started evaluating a few targets from CyanogenMod and noticed some interesting ones. After some early research, he picked a device: the LG Optimus Black (P970), bought one and started porting Replicant to it. After a few encouraging results, he was left facing issues he couldn’t overcome and decided to give up with the port. As the device could still be an interesting target for Replicant, we decided to buy the phone from him so that I could pick up the work where he stalled.

        • Commercials for Amazon’s crappy phone in Amazon Prime videos?

          If you want your phone to sell, make it better. If it’s as good as other Android-based phones or as good as the iPhone then people will buy it. But you DO NOT disrupt someone’s TV show to peddle your second-rate phone or any of your other products.

          I canceled Amazon Prime tonight. If you want my business back, Amazon, then make sure you remove all commercial interruptions from Prime programming. Otherwise, I’ll be using Netflix exclusively. If I wanted commercials, I’d watch network TV or cable.

        • The best Android phones for the holiday season

          There are lots of Android phones out there, but sometimes it’s hard to separate the wheat from the chaff. Fortunately, Android Central has a holiday guide to help you complete your Android shopping list.

        • The best Android phones

          These are the best Android smartphones that are currently available. Price listed is for each carrier’s monthly payment over 24 months. Up-front, on-contract pricing will be higher, usually between $100 and $300, depending on the phone. Click through to each carrier’s listing for off-contract costs.

Free Software/Open Source

  • Why Channel 4 chose open-source MuleSoft over ‘prohibitively expensive’ Oracle and Microsoft

    Channel 4 is using MuleSoft open-source Enterprise Service Bus (ESB) in order to more efficiently share information on application program interfaces (API) with businesses outside the broadcaster.

  • SK Telecom develops open-source oneM2M IoT platform

    SK Telecom has completed the development of an open-source Internet of Things platform based on OneM2M, the M2M and IoT standards partnership, Business Korea reports. SK Telecom launched an M2M platform in 2008. The operator has also participated in the development of open-source platform Mobius from late 2011 as a national project, together with the Korea Electronics Technology Institute and Ntels. As oneM2M announced a candidate for an IoT/M2M standard in August of this year, SK Telecom implemented the standard with the Mobius, finishing the development of a commercialization-ready platform.

  • Events

  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • Leverage Strong Development Tools from Your Browser

        There continues to be very strong demand for web and application development skills in the job market, and there is especially demand for people familiar with open development tools. One of the biggest trends going among developers is leveraging browser extensions focused on developers.

      • Mozilla Joins Hour of Code

        This campaign launched in 2013, to align with Computer Science Education Week, and to demystify code and show that anyone can learn the basics. While we’re surrounded by technology and the web in our daily lives, few people understand how it all works. In our mission to protect the open web as a global resource for all, we must educate others about how and why the web exists, but also how the web is a creative platform with endless possibilities and opportunities now and for our future.

  • SaaS/Big Data

  • Funding

    • Errplane Snags $8.1M To Continue Building Open Source InfluxDB Time Series Database

      Errplane founders Paul Dix and Todd Persen had an idea for a company last year around anomaly detection in data center monitoring, but they soon realized that field was crowded and it would take a long time to build out the infrastructure for the company. At the same, time they heard from customers they were more interested in the underlying infrastructure than the service they were offering, and they did something brave. They decided to pivot and build an open source product that would meet the needs of the entire market, rather than try to compete directly.

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

  • Public Services/Government

    • European Commission to update its open source policy

      The European Commission wants to make it easier for its software developers to submit patches and add new functionalities to open source projects. Contributing to open source communities will be made central to the EC’s new open source policy, expects Pierre Damas, Head of Sector at the Directorate General for IT (DIGIT). “We use a lot of open source components that we adapt and integrate, and it is time that we contribute back.”

  • Openness/Sharing

    • OpenMotics improves home automation

      OpenMotics is an open source home automation hardware and software system that offers features like switching lights and outputs, multi-zone heating and cooling, power measurements, and automated actions. The system encompases both open source software and hardware. For interoperability with other systems, the OpenMotics Gateway provides an API through which various actions can be executed.

    • Wanted: a tinkerer’s charter

      Users should be allowed to fiddle with the way consumer products work without suffering penalties from governments or sanctions from manufacturers

  • Standards/Consortia

    • Lithuania e-government cloud gets document management tools

      “Out of 3500 public administrations and government institutions in the country, 2500 do not yet have a DMS”, says Arelija Orlova, a specialist working for Lithuania’s Information Society Development Committee. “By including this in SIRIP, we expect an increase in the use of e-documents, boosting electronic government services.”

Leftovers

  • More than a billion dollars a week in lost data

    Australian businesses lose over $65 billion a year from data loss and downtime per year, according to major new global study.

    Storage vendor EMC has published its annual global Data Protection Index, which includes data specifically on Australia.

    It found that more than three quarters (78%) of Australian IT professionals are not fully confident in their ability to recover information following an incident, and that 58% of organisations in Australia still lack a disaster recovery plan for emerging workloads, and just 7% have plans for big data, hybrid cloud and mobile.

  • Science

    • Germany: ‘International competitiveness depends on ICT’

      Germany’s international industrial position will rely on its increasing use of ICT, the Digital Economy Working Group writes in a report prepared for an IT summit in Hamburg last October. In all classic industries, innovation will rely on the use of ICT, the working group reports: “The digital economy is crucial for the future of Germany.”

  • Security

  • Transparency Reporting

    • Why aren’t more news outlets covering Sen. Rockefeller’s shameful attempt to kill FOIA reform?

      An uncontroverisal, mild Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) reform bill may die on Monday, despite passing 410-0 in the House earlier this year, and with a similar bipartisan vote expected in the Senate. The bill had already been stripped of its most substantive provisions that government agencies objected to, but on Thursday, Democractic Senator Jay Rockefeller—who is set to retire at the end of the year—unilaterally placed a hold on the bill, apparently doing the bidding of federal agencies who don’t want any more of their communications subject to public scrutiny. (Senate rules allow a single Senator to hold up votes on bills in certain situations.)

    • Julian Assange clocks up four years at the Ecuadorian embassy

      WIKILEAKER Julian Assange is entering his fifth year as a man with a travel toothbrush and the heavy weight of legal charges over his head.

      Assange is languishing in luxury or spending his time between chair and treadmill, depending on who you listen to. He most certainly is not at liberty, however, and has been living in a room at the Ecuadorian embassy.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • Chicken farmer who spoke out about factory farm abuses immediately audited by Perdue

      Almost immediately after the animal welfare group Compassion in World Farming released a video exposing the “humane” (read: atrocious) conditions for chickens raised on a factory farm for Perdue, the poultry giant audited the farmer who opened his doors to the cameras.

    • The Pentagon — the climate elephant: Expose the Pentagon, the world’s largest & most dangerous climate criminal!

      There is an elephant in the climate debate that by U.S. demand cannot be discussed or even seen. This agreement to ignore the elephant is now the accepted basis of all international negotiations on climate change.

      It is well understood by every possible measurement that the Pentagon, the U.S. military machine, is the world’s biggest institutional consumer of petroleum products and the world’s worst polluter of greenhouse gas emissions and many other toxic pollutants. Yet the Pentagon has a blanket exemption in all international climate agreements.

      Ever since the Kyoto Accords or Kyoto Protocol negotiations in 1998, in an effort to gain U.S. compliance, all U.S. military operations worldwide and within the U.S. are exempt from measurement or agreements on reduction. The U.S. Congress passed an explicit provision guaranteeing U.S. military exemptions. (Interpress Service, May 20, 1998)

  • Finance

  • Privacy

    • Response to the HASC report on RIPA

      “When a senior Parliamentary Committee says that the current legislation is not fit for purpose, then this simply cannot be ignored. It is now abundantly clear that the law is out of date, the oversight is weak and the recording of how the powers are used is patchy at best. The public is right to expect better.

      “The conclusion of the Committee that the level of secrecy surrounding the use of these powers is permitting investigations that are deemed ”unacceptable in a democracy”, should make the defenders of these powers sit up and take notice. At present, the inadequacy and inconsistency of the records being kept by public authorities regarding the use of these powers is woefully inadequate. New laws would not be required to correct this.

    • HASC concludes that surveillance legislation is “not fit for purpose”.

      The Home Affairs Select Committee has published a report today into the use of the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000, concluding that the legislation “is not fit for purpose” and “needs a complete overhaul”.

    • A shadowy consortium opposes your Internet privacy

      It should be obvious why we need SPDY. Ever since Edward Snowden demonstrated that Internet paranoia is justified, a stream of discoveries has made always-on, end-to-end encryption even more desirable. The recent move by the Electronic Frontier Foundation, Mozilla, and others, who announced they will back a new nonprofit to promote and enable secure communications on the Internet, was welcome – by most of us.

    • Secretive UK Court That Approves Of GCHQ Surveillance Says That GCHQ Surveillance Doesn’t Violate Human Rights

      For a while now, we’ve been covering various legal challenges in Europe related to the GCHQ’s surveillance activities. One of the main cases, brought by Amnesty International and Privacy International, argued that the surveillance violated the European Convention on Human Rights (specifically article 8, on right to privacy, and article 10, on freedom of expression). While it was always expected that the case would eventually go to the European Court of Human Rights, the first step was the Investigatory Powers Tribunal in the UK — a secretive court that reviews complaints about surveillance, but (as with nearly all “secretive courts” charged with “oversight” on the intelligence community) almost always sides with the intelligence community. Between 2000 and 2012 the IPT only sided against the intelligence community 10 times out of 1468 cases brought (about half of one percent of all cases). In other words, this is a court that (in secret) regularly okays GCHQ’s surveillance efforts on UK citizens.

    • Court finds that GCHQ’s Tempora is fine and dandy

      THE UK COURTS have found that GCHQ’s Tempora system is legal in principle under the inglorious Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act.

      Pressure group Privacy International challenged Tempora in the courts, and this weekend it got its answer. It did not like it.

    • The beginning of the end of the private mail server

      Thanks to overzealous filtering by mail relays, the small mail server is becoming an endangered species

    • NSA warrantless bulk phone metadata spying continues unabated

      The NSA’s bulk phone metadata spying program was renewed for another 90 days, the fourth time the warrantless snooping has been reauthorized following President Barack Obama promising reform last January, the government said Monday.

  • Civil Rights

    • New York City Officer Cleared In Chokehold Death Was Sued By Other Black Men

      The white New York City police officer who put unarmed black Staten Island resident Eric Garner in a chokehold moments before his death has been accused by other black men of violating their civil rights while he was on patrol.

      A grand jury’s decision on Wednesday not to indict officer Daniel Pantaleo for his role in the videotaped confrontation that left 43-year-old Garner dead has sparked days of protests by groups claiming U.S. law enforcement unfairly targets African-Americans and other minorities.

    • Farage blames immigration for traffic on M4 after no-show at Ukip reception

      The Ukip leader, Nigel Farage, has blamed his late arrival at an event on immigration. He was due to appear at a “meet the leader” drinks reception as Ukip prepared to host its first Welsh conference. But he was running more than two hours late and failed to show.

    • No felony charges for SPD cop’s bone-breaking punch of handcuffed woman

      Federal prosecutors say they will review an incident in which a Seattle police officer punched and seriously injured a handcuffed, intoxicated woman, after King County prosecutors said Friday they won’t charge the officer.

    • Another Batch Of Baggage Handlers Accused Of Stealing From Luggage; Because Airport ‘Security’ Isn’t

      Now, if this were a one time thing, it might not even be that noteworthy. But this seems like fairly common practice at airports. A few years ago, we wrote about TSA agents stealing iPads and stories of TSA agents and baggage handlers stealing stuff from luggage are not at all hard to find. In fact, reports from a few years ago noted that over 400 TSA employees have been fired for stealing from passnegers in the past decade.

    • Kennedy Airport bag handlers accused of stealing from passengers’ luggage

      Seven bag handlers at Kennedy Airport have been charged with stealing electronics, jewelry and other items worth more than $20,000 from checked luggage, Queens prosecutors said Wednesday.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • Piracy ≠ Theft? Movie Industry Workers Speak Out

        The mantra often heard from Hollywood’s leaders is that pirates are thieves. However, not all people in the industry feel that way. Today we present the views of four regular filmmakers on this controversial topic, what the impact is on the industry, and what can be done in response.

      • Concern Over Russian “Piracy Buster” Internet Tax

        Russian officials have expressed caution over proposals to introduce an Internet tax to compensate copyright holders for online piracy. The proposals, which were put forward by the Russian Union of Rightsholders, are said to be worth around $860m a year to creators.

12.07.14

Links 7/12/2014: New Linux Release, Marines and Prisoners on GNU/Linux

Posted in News Roundup at 9:45 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

  • November 2014 OSI Newsletter

    The OSI Board met in San Francisco, CA USA on November 11th and 12th, 2014 with a focus on strengthening the organization’s current outreach efforts and building new bridges between open source communities. The Board was excited to review five new applications for Affiliate Membership as well as implement several new initiatives to help drive Individual Membership through the recognition of various roles and levels of access among our community. This included new Individual Membership discounts for students, volunteers working on OSI supported activities, those already members of OSI Affiliate organizations, members of Free Software Foundation and complimentary memberships based on need.

  • Pydio: open source alternative to Dropbox & Box

    Pydio 6.0 an open source file sharing solution that is said to offer “tight control of information” on the scale demanded by enterprises and service providers.

  • Open Source Continues its March into the Enterprise

    These include LibreOffice and OpenOffice for front-office productivity tools, MySQL, PostgreSQL and Ingres for databases, Pentaho for decision support, SugarCRM and Hipergate for customer relationship management, Apache Lucene, Opentext, Filenet, and Documentum for content management, and RedHat JBoss as an application server.

    While open source applications specifically for the core functions of the insurance industry are still few and far between, there are a few options, such as OpenUnderwriter.

    The main issue with open source is that while the software provides all the components needed for IT operations, expertise is needed to pull it all together for the business. But there’s always a good case to be made for open source, and often, this comes right from commercial IT vendors themselves. Prashant Parikh of CA Technologies, for instance, recently posted the reasons why open source makes sense.

  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • Hotspots: My Firefox OS phone saved the day

        However, and as paradoxical as it may be, I own a ZTE Open Firefox OS phone, which I use basically to check my email and calendar on the go, quickly browse a web page, and receive messages from family members.

        I practically never use the function that gives the device its name (telephone), that, is, making calls. I see my phone as a tiny tablet thingie and use it as such.

        But today, I had to take care of my 4-year-old daughter. It was raining and she is recovering from a bad flu, so going out was out of the question. The cable was not working, so no TV for her… which she did not really mind. But she wanted to use her computer to see her favorite videos online and we had no connection.

        What to do? I used the phone as a hotspot to share its Internet connection with my laptop.

      • Mozilla All Hands: They can’t hold us!

        I also spent some time talking to folks about Firefox in Ubuntu and rebranding Iceweasel to Firefox in Debian (fingers crossed something will happen here in 2015). Also it was great to participate in discussions around making all of the Firefox channels offer more stability and quality to our users.

      • Mozilla will finally bring Firefox to iOS

        I used to be a big fan of Firefox, and I still use it for certain things. But it just doesn’t have the mindshare that it used to have back when it’s big claim to fame was being the alternative to Internet Explorer. Mobile has been where the growth is, and many mobile users have gravitated to Safari, Chrome and other browsers on their phones and tablets.

      • Mozilla wants to put Firefox on iOS

        Mozilla has been staunchly opposed to an iOS version of its Firefox browser for a while. It wants to use its own web engine, but Apple will only let companies use its in-house code in the name of security. However, the organization is clearly having a change of heart — VP Jonathan Nightingale has revealed that Mozilla wants to bring Firefox to iOS. He didn’t say how it would happen, but it’s most likely that the company will use Apple’s engine and layer a custom interface on top, like Google does with Chrome. We’ve reached out to Mozilla and will let you know if it can say more.

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

  • Project Releases

    • Long Time No See – DevAssistant 0.10 is Here

      DevAssistant 0.10.0 is sort of pre-1.0.0, so for next release, we’re planning to go from Beta to Stable. That’s a big promise, but I think at this point DevAssistant can afford that. There will be some backwards incompatible changes between 0.10.0 and 1.0.0, but after that we’ll keep things stable until 2.0.0. In addition to that, we’re planning a major GUI overhaul – basically we’ll rewrite it from scratch, since we want it to look completely different. We’re working with Mo Duffy on the design and while it’s not finished yet, some preliminary sketches can be found at Mo’s fedorapeople page.

    • Weblate 2.1

      Weblate 2.1 has been released today.

  • Openness/Sharing

Leftovers

  • Health/Nutrition

    • Pesticides May Contribute to Farmers’ Depression and Suicides

      According to Bienkowski’s report, an Environmental Protection Agency spokesperson, Cathy Milbourn, writes that of the seven pesticides examined, “only aluminum phosphide, diazinon, and malathion are still registered and in use.” The EPA cancelled the registrations of ethylene dibromide, 2,4,5-T, dieldrin, and parathion, Milbourn said. Aluminum phosphide, diazinon, and malathion are undergoing EPA review.

    • China looking to curb fertilizer, pesticide use

      China, the world’s top producer of rice and wheat, is seeking to cap the use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides that have helped to contaminate large swathes of its arable land and threaten its ability to keep up with domestic food demand.

      More than 19 percent of soil samples taken from Chinese farmland have been found to contain excessive levels of heavy metals or chemical waste. In central Hunan province, more than three quarters of the ricefields have been contaminated, government research has shown.

    • Delay in law on plain packs for cigarettes angers MPs

      Failure to push through law in time for general election would be seen as ‘victory’ for big tobacco and lobbyists

    • Please Write to Your MP about Plain Packaging for Cigarettes

      I was disturbed to read in the Guardian that the UK government may be wavering on introducing plain packs for cigarettes. Failing to do so before the General Election would be seen as a huge victory for the tobacco companies, and have knock-on effects around the world.

      [...]

      As you know, what is particularly interesting about these cases is that they use the highly controversial Investor-State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) process in order to claim an indirect expropriation of property. Since the company is doing this through subsidiaries – one in Switzerland, the other in Hong Kong – it is not even clear whether those cases can proceed. However, it is evident that one of the main reasons Philip Morris is taking this route is to intimidate other countries thinking about bringing in plain packs measures. Indeed, New Zealand has put its own plans on hold pending the result of the Australian case, which shows that strategy is having its effect.

  • Security

    • North Korea calls claims of its Sony Pictures hacking ‘false rumor’

      North Korea on Sunday denied claims that it had hacked into Sony Pictures, calling the allegations a “false rumor” spread by South Korea.

      The U.S. film company had come under cyber attack late last month after a series of threats from North Korea for its comedy movie “The Interview,” in which the CIA plots to assassinate the country’s young leader Kim Jong-un.

    • U.S. movie about killing N.K. leader will likely be ‘blockbuster’

      A soon-to-be-released comedy film about a plot to kill North Korean leader Kim Jong-un will likely be a “blockbuster” thanks to the strong protests Pyongyang has raised about it, the U.S. human rights envoy said Friday.

    • OpEdNews Hacked, I Meet With an FBI Agent

      On Tuesday, it appears that OEN was hacked. An article that was not submitted by an editor, not submitted through the queue and not submitted by a trusted author, was published by someone who signed up the same day. The article reported that a hacker group, Cyberberkut, had hacked the phone of a member of Joe Biden’s diplomatic entourage to Ukraine.

      The anomaly– an article published outside the usual routes– led me to investigate and discover that one of the IP addresses the submitter used was associated with malware– SQL insertion, spam, even blackmail.

      I checked the name of the purported author and found someone in Ukraine with that name. But the photo used in the author ID did not match. I did a reverse image search using tineye.com and there were no other copies anywhere. I hid the article and checked google Webmaster tools, which is my first go-to place to check for malware on the site. Our webmaster also checked his tracking system. No malware was detected. I had already removed one image from Reuters because it violated copyrights. Vidya removed another image that had been included and a link, because they are higher risk for SQL insertion of malware.

    • FBI investigates threatening emails sent to Sony employees at Culver City studio

      The company has been scrambling to repair the damage to its computer system after a hack by a group calling itself Guardians of Peace.

    • Hacking at Sony has similarities with earlier attacks in Middle East and South Korea

      In 2012, Saudi Arabia’s national oil company and Qatar’s RasGas were hit by a virus known as Shamoon that damaged tens of thousands of computers. In 2013, more than 30,000 PCs at South Korean banks and broadcasting companies were hit by a similar attack by a virus dubbed DarkSeoul malware.

    • Friday’s security updates
  • Defence/Police/Secrecy/Aggression

    • Suspension of Zoabi from Knesset Raises Questions about Israeli Democracy

      In July 2014 Haneen Zoabi, the first Arab Israeli woman to be elected to the Israeli legislative body, the Knesset, was banned by the Knesset Ethics Committee from all Knesset activities. As Lahav Harkov reported in October 2014, this was a direct response to her declaration that the June kidnapping of three Israeli teenagers (later found murdered) was not an act of terrorism.

      [...]

      They covered Zoabi’s initial suspension and followed her story of failed appeals to the Knesset and the High Court. Corporate news sources such as CNN and the New York Times, on the other hand, have not reported on any aspect of the matter, while Al-Jazeera America briefly mentions Zoabi’s suspension at the end of an article about Hamas’ terms for a ceasefire.

    • ​Watching the watchmen: US shield to protect drones from ‘spoofing’ cyber-attacks
    • Chile’s Neoliberal Flip Flop

      The infamous general overthrew Salvador Allende’s socialist Chilean government in a coup d’état in 1973 with help from classified CIA support as well as cloak-and-dagger cheerleading from distant corners of the world, Milton Friedman in Chicago and Henry Kissinger in Washington, D.C.

    • Prefer cautious presidents

      I prefer a cautious president to a reckless one. Invading Iraq was reckless, doubling down on that is foolish.

    • Ukraine: Lethal Aid And Weapons Authorized By U.S. House Resolution 758, Will Obama Take On Vladimir Putin?

      Lethal aid to Ukraine has been authorized by recently passed United States House Resolution 758, which calls for President Barack Obama to send both lethal and non-lethal aid to the Ukrainian military. If the U.S. Senate passes similar legislation, it’s possible Obama may choose to escalate the confrontation with Russian leader Vladimir Putin.

    • Better for the US to stop costly wars, nuke upgrade

      The American people ought to realize — and critically respond to — the dangers involved in two directions of national-security policy that their government is pursuing:

      1) It is escalating the war against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (while extending its war in Afghanistan), and 2) discarding a previously espoused disarmament agenda in order to push a “massive modernization of nuclear-armed missiles, bombers and submarines,” to cost beyond $1 trillion over 30 years.

      These are concerns not only of Americans. They also affect the rest of the world’s peoples.

  • Transparency Reporting

    • The C.I.A.’s Power to Purge

      Not only that, Mr. Aftergood found out the National Archives and Records Administration had already offered tentative approval in August of the plan to — as a spy might put it — disappear the email of every worker but the C.I.A.’s top 22 managers, three years after they left the agency.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • U-S Petro Dollar Hegemony and Global Imperialism
    • Why Shell could buy BP for just £5 a share

      One of Britain’s oldest oil companies BP could be about to be sold to its biggest rival for a fiver per share.

      The rumoured deal, if realised, would complete one of the most ignominious falls for the once great Persian Oil company that powered Britain’s Navy to victory during the First World War.

    • Fracking Footprint Visible from Space

      Methane gas, a main component linked to damaging climate change, is being released in record amounts in the Four Corners region where Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado, and Utah meet. The Four Corners regions is one of the prime location for fracking, or hydraulic fracturing, the process of extracting natural gas from shale rock layers deep within the earth. A joint study by researchers at the University of Michigan and NASA finds that the environmental impacts of fracking are more significant than previously documented. With the help of a new satellite instrument — the European Space Agency’s SCIAMACHY — a team at University of Michigan has been able to get regional methane measurements over the entire United States back in 2009. Using this tool, they were able to identify the hotspot at the Four Corners. The footprint is so large it is visible from space.

  • Finance

    • Supplemental Poverty Measure Provides More Accurate Measure of U.S. Poverty

      Currently the official government measure of poverty under-represents the number of poor in the United States. The seemingly simple formula, created in the 1960s, has set the national poverty threshold for decades. Last year the official poverty threshold was about $23,600 for a family of two adults and two children. Yet our official poverty yardstick fails to recognize the difference in standards of living across the United States. Whether a family lives in Cheyenne, Wyoming or San Francisco, California, where the average housing costs are 225% higher than Cheyenne, the government standard makes no adjustment for regional variations in cost of living.

    • California, the Golden State, Is Actually the Poorest of All

      It has the Silicon Valley, Hollywood and Napa Valley wineries. It has something else, according to the Census Bureau. It’s the poorest state in the world’s largest economy.

    • Does China Really Have The Most Powerful Economy In The World?

      Market Watch columnist Brett Arends wrote that China has surpassed America as the number one economy, a move he claims may lead to a collapse of U.S. political and military hegemony. But does China truly have the strongest economy in the world?

      [...]

      We have lived in a world dominated by the U.S. since at least 1945 and, in many ways, since the late 19th century. And we have lived for 200 years — since the Battle of Waterloo in 1815 — in a world dominated by two reasonably democratic, constitutional countries in Great Britain and the U.S.A.

    • Costs of Global Capitalism

      The ILO report’s key chart below summarizes the key wage results of global capitalism over the last decade. Economic growth, rising real wages, and rising standards of living are the economic reality of China. Economic crisis, stagnant wages, and deepening inequalities of income and wealth are the economic realities for western Europe, the US, and Japan.

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • 5 Most Insidious Conspiracy Theories of 2014

      I’ve found that the conspiracy theories spread most widely — and the ones that seem plausible to many, unfortunately — are those based on current headlines and often propagated by public figures such as politicians, celebrities and media figures. They travel by word-of-mouth at light speed and become “a known fact.” These theories are often believed by those who assume there must be a coherence behind world events and occurrences don’t just happen randomly. Using that as our criteria, here are the most insidious conspiracy theories of 2014.

  • Censorship

    • No female ejaculation, please, we’re British

      Though this compendium is strangely lacking in frogs or any other animals (perhaps they’re catalogued elsewhere), it is a list of the new pornography restrictions that the UK government—through the Audiovisual Media Services Regulations 2014, something I’d never heard of before today—introduced on 1 December to ‘safeguard children.’ Which is the same reason five major UK Internet service providers (ISPs) gave for blocking my own website, even though it’s more about literature, publishing, and current affairs than it is about pornography. (Most of these ISPs unblocked the site when I told them that there were no words on it that could be ‘deemed sensitive to a young audience.’)

    • New world for Britain’s online smut: censorship
    • British Censors Ban Spanking, Female Ejaculation And Other Sex Acts From Online Porn

      Lawmakers in the United Kingdom have deemed face-sitting to be a “life-endangering” act worthy of censorship, the Independent reports.

    • U.K. Censors Online Porn; Spanking, Rough Sex, Other Assorted Kink Banned

      Continuing on its recent censorship-happy path, the U.K. government amended regulations this week to prohibit online porn from depicting a variety of erotic activities. Now-illicit acts range from the very specific (female ejaculation; “spanking, caning, and whipping beyond a gentle level”) to the incredibly broad (“verbal abuse”). But basically, the U.K. has banned BDSM and certain forms of fetish porn—or at least, charging money for that sort of porn.

    • The UK’s sexist new pornography restrictions aren’t just an act of state censorship, but could be the first step towards something even worse

      As you might have already heard, an act of state censorship has been declared against British pornography in the guise of innocuous regulation. But what you might not know is that it has also marked the first stage in a campaign to impose global trade sanctions. Strangely, this proposition has received less coverage.

    • The Spectator at war: Censorship and mystification

      Let us say that we have not ourselves suffered from the Censorship at all. We have never submitted, and have never been asked to submit, any article to the Press Bureau. Such censorship as has been exercised in our columns has been the purely voluntary censorship which is exercised at all times, whether in war or in peace, by every editor who has any sense of public duty, and that remark, we believe, applies to the whole British Press, daily and weekly. We have, of course, constantly asked ourselves whether it would be wise on general grounds to make this or that comment, or whether we ought to refrain from comment which we thought sound in itself because we knew or believed it to run counter to the Government view, and to be likely to interfere with their action and policy. Our feeling was that, as the Government and not we were responsible for the conduct of the war, it was our business as good citizens to support their action, even when we did not think it wise. There can be only one driver of a coach, and as long as he is on the box he must be trusted, and no effort must be made to jog his elbow or snatch at the reins. For example, there are certain things which we believe it would be to the public interest to say about foreign States, and which it would be practically impossible for the Government to suppress even under the most exaggerated interpretation of the rights of the Censor ; but these comments we have not made on the ground just given—that it is the Government who are responsible for foreign affairs, and we must not do anything which in their opinion, whether right or wrong is no matter, would injure or weaken them in the difficult task before them.

    • Russia and Turkey Lead on Internet Censorship Growth, Survey Shows

      Internet users in Russia and Turkey have been subjected to the greatest increase in web censorship over the past year, according to the latest Freedom on the Net survey.

    • Pakistan, China among top 10 worst countries for Internet freedom

      Majority among the top ten worst countries are from Asia, including Iran, Syria, China, Uzbekistan, Vietnam, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan.

    • Copyright Law as a Tool for State Censorship of the Internet

      When state officials seek to censor online speech, they’re going to use the quickest and easiest method available. For many, copyright takedown notices do the trick. After years of lobbying and increasing pressure from content industries on policymakers and tech companies, sending copyright notices to take media offline is easier than ever.

    • Independent news portals now popular due to government’s censorship

      The government crackdown on the media during the anti-government protest and corruption scandals of last year and the two elections this year have led to the growth of a number of independent news portals as an alternative source of information for many in Turkey.

  • Civil Rights

    • Sean Hannity Finds A Way To Make Eric Garner’s Death About Benghazi

      Hannity Indignant Over Boehner’s Calls For Congressional Hearings On Garner’s Death Rather Than Benghazi

    • You Can’t Live With Us: 53 Britons Stripped of Citizenship

      The issue of UK citizens being stripped of their nationality has not been well covered, especially in major US news outlets. For example, since 2003 the New York Times has published only three stories on the topic, while the Washington Post, Philadelphia Inquirer, and USA Today have published just one story each, for a total of just six stories over the course of eleven years in major US newspapers. Instead, significant coverage of this issue comes from the independent sources, such as the Bureau of Investigative Journalism, which maintains an ongoing series of reports under the title, “Citizenship Revoked.”

    • An MRAP Is Not a Blanket

      Americans watched in horror as the police descended on peaceful protesters in Ferguson…

    • Long-awaited CIA torture report could pose risks to hostages: State Department

      Secretary of state John Kerry has asked Senator Dianne Feinstein to “consider” the timing of the expected release of a long-awaited report on the CIA’s harsh interrogation techniques.

    • Kerry asks Feinstein to consider CIA report timing
    • CIA Won’t Defend Its One-Time Torturers
    • Kerry to Feinstein: Consider timing of CIA report
    • WHITE HOUSE GETTING COLD FEET OVER EXPOSING CIA’S TORTURE SECRETS
    • Inside the Battle Over the CIA Torture Report
    • John Kerry asks to delay CIA torture report
    • Lawmakers Insist On Release Of CIA Torture Report, Despite Administration’s Objections
    • As CIA, senators settle feuds, long-awaited ‘torture’ report imminent
    • New Obstacle Arises to Release of CIA Torture Report
    • MARK UDALL PROMISES AMERICA WILL “BE DISGUSTED” AT CIA TORTURE REPORT

      The Senate Intelligence Committee, led by Dianne Feinstein of California, is soon expected to release its summary of the so-called CIA Torture Report, the committee’s four-year-long investigation into the CIA’s Bush-era torture practices. Release of the summary is the result of months of wrangling and negotiating with the White House on what would be released to the public and when—and it will likely be heavily redacted. During an interview conducted on Friday, November 21, by Esquire writer at large Scott Raab, outgoing senator Mark Udall of Colorado, who lost his reelection race on November 4, once again said that if the report is not released in a way he deems transparent, he would consider all options to make it public. In this excerpt from the interview, Raab asks Udall if he will read the document into the record on the floor of the Senate before he leaves in January, an act for which he cannot be prosecuted.

    • ARE YOU THERE, CIA? IT’S ME, SIOBHAN.

      These are boom times for national security reporters, with government surveillance becoming a major topic after Edward Snowden leaked a trove of NSA documents, but one of the most well-known journalists on the intelligence beat, Siobhan Gorman of the Wall Street Journal, has decided to throw in the towel and join the Dark Side—in Gorman’s case, a global communications company called Brunswick, where she will reportedly focus on privacy and data security.

      Gorman has done very solid reporting for the Journal and her previous employer, The Baltimore Sun. She has been prolific–and not just on the printed page. It turns out that she has had a lot of correspondence with the Central Intelligency Agency’s public affairs office, 246 pages of which were provided to us under a Freedom of Information Act request. We published the emails without comment earlier this year, as part of a story about reporter Ken Dilanian’s eyebrow-raising interchanges with the CIA, but in the event Gorman or her employers need a copy of her correspondence with our spymasters (perhaps the Journal has already revoked her access to its computers), we are re-upping them.

      It’s colorful reading—Gorman shows a lot of interest in learning about the CIA’s gym facilities (“I was just told that the facilities at the black sites were better than the ones at CIA”), and a year to the day after the killing of Osama bin Laden she cheerily began an email to the agency by asking, “So do I wish you a ‘happy anniversary’ today’?” There’s also this mysterious missive she sent the CIA about an apparent meeting she had with an agency official: “What prompted my guest to leave so suddenly? Bat phone rang twice, and then he excused himself?” And a word of warning to her next boss at Brunswick—watch what you say, because Gorman, when asking the agency for guidance on a rumor that Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad had been killed, explained to the CIA that the info came from the editor of her paper “but his tips aren’t always accurate.”

    • US: Release Torture Report

      The US Senate’s intelligence committee should release as planned its report summary on the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)’s detention and interrogation program, Human Rights Watch said today. The White House’s expressed support for the release has been undermined by statements from the State Department raising concerns over the timing of the release and possible foreign policy implications.

    • Udall plays with a loaded deck

      Udall can wield a lot of power, forcing even classified portions of the report into the spotlight.

    • Rand Paul — from ophthalmologist to US Constitution guardian

      The 51-year-old doctor was sent to Washington by voters furious with a system that kept swelling the national debt, and anxious over what Paul sees as government zeal for war and encroachment on American civil liberties.

    • Feinstein fights to release torture report before GOP takeover

      The full report runs 6,700 pages, covering the committee’s review of 6.2 million pages of documents from the CIA and the Defense Department. Feinstein met fierce resistance from the CIA during the entire investigation, and now with less than a week before she hands the Intelligence Committee gavel to North Carolina Republican Sen. Richard Burr, she is battling the White House over its refusal to declassify the report.

    • Anger against police tops Sunday talk shows
    • Police violence in US UN documents torture

      The United Nations Committee Against Torture issued a lengthy report today assessing the performance of the 156 countries whose governments have ratified the Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, which took effect two decades ago.

    • Top police officer: many viewing child abuse images should be treated on NHS

      Norfolk chief constable Simon Bailey believes thousands on police database ‘pose no threat’ and don’t belong in prison

    • New York’s Next Killer-Cop Grand Jury

      Mass protests in New York were stretching into their third day when a new grand jury was announced on Friday. Not for the case of Eric Garner—a previous grand jury’s decision earlier this week not to indict the officer seen choking him on film before he died sparked the current protests. The latest grand jury will investigate the death of Akai Gurley, another unarmed black man who was killed by a police officer months after Garner’s death, in what the department says was an accidental shooting.

    • Abject failure of US to come clean on torture

      Now, more than ever, it is vital to show the world that real democracies are not like terrorist groups because they demand real accountability

    • Why Hosting Rudy Giuliani To Talk About Race Is A Bad Idea
    • Reporting the News Like Black Lives Don’t Matter

      “Black lives matter” is the rallying cry of the burgeoning nationwide movement against police killings. The Associated Press (12/5/14), covering that movement, has produced a perfect example of what journalism looks like when black lives don’t matter.

      [...]

      Or even to make the basic medical point that being able to talk is a sign that you don’t need the Heimlich maneuver–not that you don’t need a cop to stop administering a notoriously lethal chokehold.

      You don’t get any of those points in the article, because AP didn’t feel any need to quote (or, seemingly, talk to) anyone who thought that the life of Eric Garner was more important than the feelings of New York Police Department officers. Because, one has to assume, to AP black lives don’t matter.

  • DRM

    • Why Marvin has become my favorite ebook app

      Oh, and if you need to you can move your Kindle books over to Marvin via Calibre by removing the DRM. I, of course, do not advise you to do this one way or the other. It’s entirely your choice and may be affected by whatever the relevant laws are for that sort of thing. ;)

12.06.14

Links 7/12/2014: Typhoon Hagupit, AURORAGOLD

Posted in News Roundup at 7:50 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

  • Separating The Opportunities From The Obstacles In Open-Source Networking

    Open standards have driven the networking market since the earliest days of the Internet. While the use of open source for networking is a more recent phenomenon, it is no less important. A major industry transition to open source for software-defined networking (SDN) is under way, and users and vendors stand to benefit. Some expectations, however, may need to change.

    While the original idea behind SDN — separating the control from the data plane in network switches — has turned out to be just one of many architectural approaches that have emerged, it did catalyze massive interest in software and open source within the networking world. Things like APIs and DevOps tools became relevant to network engineers, and open source movements emerged to fulfill the need for increased automation and flexibility as organizations moved deeper into the cloud.

  • Google’s New Open Source Project Lets You Add Live Streaming to Your App

    The numbers all point to the same conclusion: When it comes to modern communication mediums, videoconferencing is becoming increasingly popular.

  • 11 open source tools to make the most of machine learning

    These 11 machine learning tools provide functionality for individual apps or whole frameworks, such as Hadoop. Some are more polyglot than others: Scikit, for instance, is exclusively for Python, while Shogun sports interfaces to many languages, from general-purpose to domain-specific.

  • Samsung’s strategic commitment to upstream open source development

    The Linux Foundation’s Linux.com website reports that Samsung’s open source group is now “hiring aggressively” and plans to double the size of the group in the coming years.

  • The 10 Coolest Open Source Apps of 2014
  • Open-source tools will benefit military and Wisconsin vehicle makers

    All of the software Negrut’s team develops will eventually be made publicly available through a website. “We believe making it all open source is the best way to ensure this transfer of technology from us to industry, where people can take advantage of the techniques and the software that we develop as part of this project, so as to foster innovation here or elsewhere in industry,” Negrut says.

  • Intel announces new Stephen Hawking speech system will be open source
  • Hawking’s speech software goes open source for disabled

    The system that helps Stephen Hawking communicate with the outside world will be made available online from January in a move that could help millions of motor neurone disease sufferers, scientists said Tuesday.

  • SaaS/Big Data

    • HP Steps Up Big Data Game with Cloud-Based Helion Offering

      Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) made another significant move within the Big Data market this week with the announcement of Haven OnDemand, which brings the data analytics and app development features of the company’s Vertica and IDOL platforms to the cloud.

      The tools, which are hosted on the Helion cloud, provide access to Vertica’s data analytics functionality, as well as the capabilities of IDOL, which is designed to assist developers in building apps that leverage big data.

    • Mirantis Targets Developers with Hosted OpenStack Solution

      Mirantis is betting that ease of use and simple documentation will speed OpenStack adoption. That’s the goal behind the new “Developer Edition” of Mirantis OpenStack Express, which the company calls “the fastest and easiest way to get an OpenStack cloud.”

  • Databases

  • Funding

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

    • Reclaiming the PDF from Adobe Reader

      In October, it was discovered that Adobe had removed the link to download Adobe Reader, its proprietary PDF file viewer, for use with a GNU/Linux operating system.

      While it is still possible to install Adobe Reader on GNU/Linux, Adobe’s attempts to hide access to the product for certain users is only one example of its systematic neglect of its GNU/Linux user base, and falls in line with many others as a demonstration of the importance of free software–software that no company or developer can neglect or hide. As the Windows and OSX versions of the software were developed through version 11, the GNU/Linux version was long stuck at version nine. For several years the software has lacked important features, security improvements, and support against malware attacks and other intrusions. Yet, by “locking in” Adobe Reader users and making it difficult for them to migrate to a free software PDF viewer, Adobe has, in effect, degraded the power of the PDF as a free document format, a standard the purpose of which is to be implemented by any potential piece of software and to be compatible with all. The company has abandoned the principle of program-agnostic documents, bringing about a lose-lose situation for all.

      By being led to rely on the proprietary software for tasks like sharing documents and filling out forms without the option to use a free software reader in its place, entreprises, the public sector, and institutions of higher learning have also fallen victim to this neglect, all as Adobe insidiously seeks to maintain a hold on its market share. Within institutions such as government–institutions that ought not to rely on any proprietary software, to begin with–it is concerning that Adobe Reader has often been taken to be the only option for interacting with PDF files and for communicating with the electorate.

  • Project Releases

  • Openness/Sharing

    • Valve and Steam broadcasting, Dolphin emulator, and more

      Hello, open gaming fans! In this week’s edition, we take a look at Steam Broadcasting beta, the open source Dolphin emulator, QEMU’s advent calendar, and game releases for Linux.

    • An open source future for synthetic biology

      If the controversy over genetically modified organisms (GMOs) tells us something indisputable, it is this: GMO food products from corporations like Monsanto are suspected to endanger health. On the other hand, an individual’s right to genetically modify and even synthesize entire organisms as part of his dietary or medical regimen could someday be a human right.

    • Open-source gadget lets you invent your own Internet of Things

      This is why Ville Ylläsjärvi thinks Thingsee One, the open source, Internet of Things gadget his company is Kickstarting, will have staying power. Thingsee One isn’t just a sensor-stuffed piece of hardware, it’s a developer kit for other hardware makers. “We’re solving the hardware equation for them,” he says. “Startups can develop their solution using Thingsee One, get on with tests and pilots on the field using Thingsee One, and in many cases get their first customers using Thingsee One.”

    • Open Data

  • Programming

Leftovers

  • Health/Nutrition

    • Fox’s John Stossel Thinks Secondhand Smoke Isn’t Deadly

      Fox’s John Stossel claimed that “there is no good data showing secondhand smoke kills people,” ignoring years of studies and a 2014 Surgeon General report that determined millions of Americans have died as a result of exposure to secondhand smoke.

    • Monsanto Seeks to Bring GM Corn to the Ukraine

      Monsanto has been making headway toward bringing GMOs (genetically modified organisms) into Ukraine. Former Ukraine President, Viktor Yanukovych, rejected a proposed $17 billion loan to Ukraine from the World Bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF) in late 2013, because the loan required the introduction of GMO seeds and Ukrainian law bars farmers from growing GM crops. Long considered “the bread basket of Europe,” Ukraine’s rich black soil is ideal for growing grains, and in 2012 Ukrainian farmers harvested more than 20 million tons of corn.

  • Security

    • Report: 31 percent of detected threats in 2014 attributed to Conficker

      Six years after first being spotted in the wild, Conficker is still making its rounds online, and new research suggests that 31 percent of this year’s top threats involved the worm.

      Conficker capitalizes on unpatched machines that are still running Windows XP, as well as systems operating pirated versions of Windows, according to F-Secure’s Threat Report H1 2014, which identifies the top 10 threats of the first half of 2014. The countries most at risk for the worm are Brazil, the United Arab Emirates, Italy, Malaysia and France.

  • Defence/Police/Secrecy/Aggression

    • “U.S. Drones Kill 28 ‘Unknowns’ for Every Intended Target”
    • U.S. drones kill 28 innocents for every ‘bad guy’
    • November Drone Report: Strikes Spike in Yemen, Children Reportedly Killed in Pakistan
    • Arithmetic of Precision Drone Strikes: Kill 28 to Eliminate 1 Target
    • The Drone War: Mitigating Collateral Damage
    • A “Precise” U.S. Drone War? Report Says 28 Unidentified Victims Killed for Every 1 Target

      A new report finds U.S. drone strikes kill 28 unidentified people for every intended target. While the Obama administration has claimed its drone strikes are precise, the group Reprieve found that strikes targeting 41 people in Yemen and Pakistan have killed more than 1,000 other, unnamed people. In its attempts to kill al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri alone, the CIA killed 76 children and 29 adults; al-Zawahiri remains alive. We are joined by Jennifer Gibson, staff attorney at Reprieve and author of the new report, “You Never Die Twice: Multiple Kills in the U.S. Drone Program.”

    • Obama’s Drone Campaign: Portrait of a Failed War on Terror

      Murderous US Foreign Policy Only Recruits More Terrorists

    • Shaky drones

      The US has always dodged questions about the legality of its drone strikes by arguing on grounds of efficiency.

    • The dirty consequences of our clean wars

      The fact that only 25% of airstrikes in Iraq and 5% of airstrikes in Syria are pre-planned, with the vast majority being undertaken by aircraft and drones ‘on the fly’ (i.e. when a ‘target of opportunity’ is spotted) will no doubt impact on the number of civilian casualties killed in this air war.

    • In Yemen, al Qaeda’s Greatest Enemy Is Not America’s Friend

      Locals describe Manasa as a village, but it’s little more than a complex of houses loosely clustered around an earthen courtyard at the end of a bumpy dirt track five hours from Yemen’s capital of Sanaa.

    • Former PM slams US Vice President for comments on M’sian judiciary

      Malaysia’s former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad (pix) slammed US Vice President Joe Biden for his comment on Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s sodomy trial in which he said that the appeal against the conviction was a chance for Malaysia to “promote confidence” in its judiciary.

      “The Vice President needs to look at his own country first. In America, citizens are given life sentences and they do not even know about it, the government sentences them and uses drones to kill them.

      “This is the country that is advising us about the sanctity of law? It seems that they have an ulterior motive for Anwar to become the Prime Minister,” said Mahathir.

      Biden was unusually direct about his remarks on Twitter recently saying that the Malaysian government’s use of legal system & Sedition Act to stifle the opposition raises rule of law concerns.

    • From Ferguson to Yemen: What If We Aren’t So Different After All?

      While saddened by the news out of Ferguson, Missouri this past week, I am not surprised. Once again an unarmed black teen was shot dead by an “other than” black man, and the legal industry was used to exonerate the killer. I say legal industry, because it is no longer a system of due process and equal protection, and no longer seeking justice. It is merely an industry which allows experts and insiders to use the law to further their own agenda.

    • Drone strikes kill nine in Yemen

      A suspected US drone strike in Yemen killed nine alleged al-Qaida militants early on Saturday, a security official said, as authorities continue their search for an American photojournalist held by the extremists.

    • War by media and the triumph of propaganda

      Why has so much journalism succumbed to propaganda? Why are censorship and distortion standard practice? Why is the BBC so often a mouthpiece of rapacious power? Why do the New York Times and the Washington Post deceive their readers?

      Why are young journalists not taught to understand media agendas and to challenge the high claims and low purpose of fake objectivity? And why are they not taught that the essence of so much of what’s called the mainstream media is not information, but power?

      These are urgent questions. The world is facing the prospect of major war, perhaps nuclear war – with the United States clearly determined to isolate and provoke Russia and eventually China. This truth is being turned upside down and inside out by journalists, including those who promoted the lies that led to the bloodbath in Iraq in 2003.

      The times we live in are so dangerous and so distorted in public perception that propaganda is no longer, as Edward Bernays called it, an “invisible government”. It is the government. It rules directly without fear of contradiction and its principal aim is the conquest of us: our sense of the world, our ability to separate truth from lies.

    • Navy Seeks to Practice Using Electromagnetic Radiation Weapons Over U.S. Soil

      It is estimated that enough electromagnetic radiation will be emitted to melt human eye tissue and cause breast cancer, not to mention the damage to the environment and wildlife on lands ostensibly under federal protection. The Growler planes employ electronic technology to jam enemy radar. Navy officials aim to fly training programs over U.S. lands some 260 days a year. As Jamail writes, “What is at stake is not just whether the military is allowed to use protected public lands in the Pacific Northwest for its war games, but a precedent being set for them to do so across the entire country.”

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

  • Finance

    • The Vatican has found hundreds of millions of euro “tucked away”

      THE VATICAN’S ACCOUNTS czar said last night that he had stumbled across hundred of millions of euros “tucked away” in various accounts, describing the windfall as a relic of the papacy’s medieval but soon-to-be reformed financial set-up.

      “We have discovered that the (Vatican’s financial) situation is much healthier than it seemed,” the Australian cardinal Pell told Britain’s Catholic Herald.

  • Censorship

    • Russia Threatens To Ban BuzzFeed

      Russia has warned BuzzFeed that it will ban access to the entire site over a post published on Wednesday about a deadly gunfight in the capital of Chechnya.

      BuzzFeed received an email on Friday from Roskomnadzor, Russia’s federal communications agency, saying that the post “contains appeals to mass riots, extremist activities or participation in mass (public) actions held with infringement of the established order.” It cited statutes laid out by the prosecutor general’s office and said access to the site “is restricted by communications service providers in the territory of the Russian Federation.” It has given BuzzFeed 24 hours to remove the post or face a total ban.

    • Chaos Computer Club on the blocking of our website in UK

      A significant portion of British citizens are currently blocked from accessing the Chaos Computer Club’s (CCC) website. On top of that, Vodafone customers are blocked from accessing the ticket sale to this year’s Chaos Communication Congress (31C3). [1]

      Since July 2013, a government-backed so-called opt out list censors the open internet. These internet filters, authorized by Prime Minister David Cameron, are implemented by UK’s major internet service providers (ISPs). Dubbed as the “Great Firewall of Britain”, the lists block adult content as well as material related to alcohol, drugs, smoking, and even opinions deemed “extremist”.

  • Privacy

  • Civil Rights

    • Green activists from Ecuador harassed by police on way to climate summit

      Activists say their presence at the meeting in Peru would be embarrassing to President Rafael Correa, who wants to drill for oil in the Amazon

    • If Eric Garner’s killer can’t be indicted, what cop possibly could? It’s time to fix grand juries

      Grand juries were designed to be a check on prosecutors and law enforcement. Instead, they’ve become a corrupt shield to protect those with power and another sword to strike down those without. And it’s now all too obviously past time the system was overhauled to fix that.

    • British military base in Bahrain is a ‘reward’ for UK’s silence on human rights, say campaigners

      The Royal Navy will set up a permanent base in Bahrain, to the dismay of human rights campaigners who say the base is a “reward” for the British’s government silence over torture, attacks on peaceful protesters and arbitrary detention in the tiny kingdom.

    • Rookie NYPD officer who shot Akai Gurley in Brooklyn stairwell was texting union rep as victim lay dying

      In the six and a half minutes after Peter Liang discharged a single bullet that struck Gurley, 28, he and his partner couldn’t be reached, sources told the Daily News. And instead of calling for help for the dying man, Liang was texting his union representative. What’s more, the sources said, the pair of officers weren’t supposed to be patrolling the stairways of the Pink Houses that night.

    • SAFE hosts de-hired professor from University of Illinois

      Salaita, who was set to begin a tenured position at Illinois this fall, had his job offer retracted after a number of donors, students and faculty at the school contended that he was anti-Semitic.

    • The Police in America Are Becoming Illegitimate

      Nobody’s willing to say it yet. But after Ferguson, and especially after the Eric Garner case that exploded in New York yesterday after yet another non-indictment following a minority death-in-custody, the police suddenly have a legitimacy problem in this country.

    • Man who filmed Eric Garner in chokehold says grand jury was rigged

      Ramsey Orta — who recorded the July 17 incident in which Officer Daniel Pantaleo put Eric Garner in a chokehold shortly before he died on his cellphone — told the Daily News the grand jury ‘wasn’t fair from the start,’ and claims his testimony only lasted 10 minutes. ‘I think they already had their minds made up,’ he said.

    • Sunday Explainer: The unprecedented immigration powers awarded to Scott Morrison

      In the words of Motoring Enthusiast Party Senator Ricky Muir, the upper house was faced with a choice between a “bad decision or a worse decision”. He opted for what he decided was the former, and gave the government the final vote it needed for the controversial Migration and Maritime Powers Legislation Amendment bill to pass the Senate, 34 votes to 32. The amended legislation was then rushed through the House of Representatives, which was due to have its final sitting day of the year on Thursday, but returned on Friday to pass it into law in just 12 minutes.

    • Stephen Colbert Slams Fox News’ Willful Ignorance On Race Relations

      Colbert: Non-Indictments For Police Shootings Could Be Seen “As Part Of A Larger Troubling Trend. Or, You Could Be Fox News.”

    • Violence erupts in Greece

      A march through central Athens to mark the sixth anniversary of the fatal police shooting of an unarmed teenager quickly turned violent Saturday, as marchers damaged store fronts and bus stations, and set fire to clothes looted from a shop.

      Clashes also broke out between police and demonstrators marching through the northern city of Thessaloniki. At night, police fired tear gas and stun grenades after a crowd of marchers beat up two plainclothes policemen there.

    • As protests mount, Athens braces for the worst

      For more than 20 days now, 21-year-old anarchist Nikos Romanos has been on hunger strike, demanding prison leave to attend lectures after he passed university entrance exams.

    • Theresa May’s child sexual abuse inquiry faces new storm

      Two members of Theresa May’s panel inquiring into child sex abuse are facing calls to resign after being accused of sending threatening or insulting emails to victims who had criticised the inquiry.

      Lawyers for one abuse survivor have written to the home secretary to complain of a string ofunsolicited communications, including an allegedly threatening email sent two days before an official meeting that both panellists and an abuse survivor were due to attend.

    • Body Cameras Worn by Police Officers Are No ‘Safeguard of Truth,’ Experts Say

      Michael Brown’s family, on the night of the Ferguson grand jury decision, called for all police in the United States to wear body cameras.

      Mayor Bill de Blasio, in announcing that some of New York’s police officers would begin wearing them, said “body cameras are one of the ways to create a real sense of transparency and accountability.”

      And on Monday, President Obama said he would request $75 million in federal funds to distribute 50,000 body cameras to police departments nationwide, saying they would improve police relations with the public.

    • Kerry Puts Brakes on CIA Torture Report

      Secretary of State John Kerry personally phoned Dianne Feinstein, chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, Friday morning to ask her to delay the imminent release of her committee’s report on CIA torture and rendition during the George W. Bush administration, according to administration and Congressional officials.

      [...]

      But those concerns are not new, and Kerry’s 11th-hour effort to secure a delay in the report’s release places Feinstein in a difficult position: She must decide whether to set aside the administration’s concerns and accept the risk, or scuttle the roll-out of the investigation she fought for years to preserve.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality

Links 6/12/2014: BioShock Comes to GNU/Linux

Posted in News Roundup at 3:58 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Marines dump Microsoft for Linux OS on Northrop Grumman radar

    Just weeks after Northrop Grumman got approval to begin building a new breed of mobile radar systems for the Marine Corps, the Corps has asked the defense contractor in Linthicum to change the operating system.

    The Department of Defense announced a $10.2 million contract modification Wednesday to change the operator command and control software on its G/ATOR radar system Microsoft Windows XP to a Defense Information Systems Agency compliant Linux OS.

    Ingrid Vaughan, director of the program, said the change would mean greater compatability for laptop computers used to control the system in the future.

    In a statement released Friday, she said Microsoft Windows XP is no longer supported by the software developer and the shift to a DOD approved Linux operating system will reduce both the complexity of the operating system and need for future updates.

  • Server

    • IBM Partners With Docker, Launches Containers Service

      IBM partners with Docker, launches the IBM Containers Service and becomes the first company to sell integrated solutions with Docker Hub Enterprise.

    • Docker Has a New Orchestration Platform but APIs Can’t Come Soon Enough

      The launch also included the first of a set of accompanying open APIs aimed at helping ecosystem partners create products and services that align and integrate with the new Docker orchestration offerings. In high demand from developers, the timeline for future APIs is not for several months, which may disappoint some ecosystem partners who have already been waiting for some time for the “plugin APIs” that will enable them to integrate their ecosystem products with the Docker Engine.

    • Where to Find a SysAdmin Job

      The role of system administrator means candidates “need to operate at a somewhat higher level of abstraction,” as Heikki Topi, a professor of computer information systems at Bentley University and a member of the education board at the Association for Computing Machinery, has put it.

  • Kernel Space

    • Linux Foundation Expands Management Team to Respond to Growth
    • Linux Foundation names Portland’s Steve Westmoreland as CIO

      The Linux Foundation, the nonprofit that oversees the Linux open source computer operating system, added to its Oregon staff this week by hiring Portland’s Steve Westmoreland as chief information officer.

    • Open Source: Linux Operating System Introduced in 1991

      In the beginning, software was free, something you needed to make the hardware run. Then Microsoft (MSFT) and others demonstrated that people would pay for proprietary code, and for a long while software wasn’t free. But proprietary code was often clunky, and what worked on one kind of computer had to be re-created on others. Soon people realized there was a better way, and software became free again, sort of. Open-source software is essentially software that’s open to the public for tinkering, and over time that tinkering makes the code stronger. Linux, the classic example, is an operating system that’s been so extensively customized and built upon, versions of it now run everything from data centers, PCs, TVs, and cars to your Android smartphone. Companies still charge for apps and services, but much of the technology we use today is based on building blocks that are free and open to the imagination.

    • Linux Foundation Adds New Leaders, New Events for 2015

      Over the past couple of years, The Linux Foundation has emerged as a very influential organization overseeing not only directly Linux-related initiatives, but important technology efforts including building out “The Internet of Everything.” This week, the foundation made a series of announcements, including the news that it is expanding its leadership team, and news about events that the foundation will sponsor in 2015. Here is more.

    • Graphics Stack

    • Benchmarks

      • Linux Benchmarks Of Intel’s Edison Module

        Intel’s Edison Module is a development platform for prototyping wearable computing devices and IoT devices. Here’s some Linux benchmarks with the Intel Edison running on Debian.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments/WMs

  • Distributions

    • Zorin: That is Flexibility!

      About 2 years ago I tried Zorin 6.0 and have used it and upgraded it on one of my computers since. I especially like the Zorin OS desktop experience because I can change it to look like Windows 7 or like Mac. That is flexibility! I also enjoy the Ubuntu type repository system!

    • Puzzle GNU/Linux: Integrated Pieces Create an Intriguing OS

      Puzzle GNU/Linux is a strange OS distribution that shows the value of open source ingenuity. This Linux distro is built around a hybrid desktop that is highly customizable.

    • Reviews

      • Makulu Linux 6.0 KDE: Guaranteed to make you smile

        Another Makulu Linux distribution was released today, and that’s always good news! This time it is the KDE desktop for the Makulu 6.x series. The Xfce version of this was just released a couple of weeks ago, so I don’t expect for there to be any major surprises: I hope that means this will not be a very lengthy post.

      • Linux Lite 2.2 Review – Consumes Low Memory, But Failed to Wake My PC from Sleep

        ‘Linux Lite’ is a GNU/Linux distribution based on the Ubuntu’s Long Term Support releases. It includes the lightweight & fully functional XFCE desktop environment, comes with full support for proprietor multimedia playback & a few applications of its own (software updater, additional app installer, a ‘cleaner’…) that should assist a novice user for easily managing the installed operating system.

    • New Releases

      • Q4OS 0.5.22 version released

        The new version improve font appearance for GTK2 applications and brings more accurate GTK2 styles in both classical and modern Q4OS themes. Lookswitcher, the tool to switch between Q4OS desktop themes, now works flawlessly, it has been fixed to prevent styles mixing on some rare switch attempts. Shortcuts in non-default Kickoff menu have been updated. More internal improvements has been made and several minor bugs has been closed.

    • Ballnux/SUSE

      • CentOS Rolls Along as openSUSE 12.3 Nears EOL

        Karanbir Singh today announced the inaugural release of CentOS rolling builds. CentOS will be releasing monthly respins of CentOS to include “all security, bugfix, enhancement and general updates.” In other news, openSUSE 12.3 nears the end of its support and hit game BioShock Infinite looks to be heading to a Linux machine near you.

      • Tumbleweed is rolling along

        It has been more than a month since the new structure of opensuse Tumbleweed was announced (see my earlier post), and we have seen it in practice for a month.

      • Opensuse linux for education 13.2 — a review

        Overall, this is a nice package. It might be a good place to start for someone wanting to try out opensuse for the first time.

      • openSUSE 12.3 Is Approaching End of Life Fast

        openSUSE 12.3 is now very close to reach End of Life and the support cycle will be terminated in a few weeks time, meaning no more updates will be provided for the aging operating system.

    • Red Hat Family

      • Release for CentOS Linux Rolling media
      • ALERT: A Software Security Transparency Breach Warning

        The example of how the NSA intentionally inserted weakened string constants into Elliptic Curve Cryptography lay hidden for several years, in fact, and was only exposed by a languishing open Red Hat trouble ticket. What was odd was how given the potential seriousness of the incident, no action was being taken to look at the source code and change it. As more comments appended to the ticket, the level of suspicion grew to the point of where NIST was forced to open up an investigation.

      • Red Hat, Huawei Partner on OpenStack for NFV

        The two tech vendors see the OpenStack solution as an ideal platform for telecommunications vendors that want to bring NFV to their networks.

      • Building an analytics cloud on OpenShift

        Communication and collaboration between development and operations can be difficult to achieve in many organizations, especially in larger environments. These two areas have traditionally operated within ‘silos’ separate from each other – something that can lead to delays and miscommunication.

      • Red Hat and Partners Aim to Infuse Open NFV Tools in Telco Data Centers

        As 2014 draws to a close, we’re seeing a lot of action from telecom players and the open source community surrounding Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) technology. Telecom companies have traditionally had a lot of proprietary tools in the middle and at the basis of their technology stacks. NFV is an effort to combat that, and to help the parallel trends of virtualization and cloud computing stay as open as possible.

      • Fedora

    • Debian Family

      • Release Critical Bug report for Week 49
      • Slackware, Crux, Pisi, Manjaro, Devuan… Freedom-Fighters Or Luddites?

        Debian is going astray. Unless they wake up, many loyal devotees of Debian will move to other distros that do IT the right way. I’m a little old to be distro-hopping but even I can see the necessity of escaping the entanglement, the single point of failure, and the loss of control that systemd represents.

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Meizu MX4 Running Ubuntu Touch Surfaces

            Meizu is really under the spotlight lately. The company has launched their latest handset just recently, Meizu is doing great as far as sales go and everything seems to be in place. This Chinese OEM has big plans, no doubt about that. They have signed an agreement with Alibaba a while back in order to use parts of Alibaba’s YunOS in their own Flyme OS and basically created a partnership between two companies. That’s not the only agreement Meizu signed in the last couple of month, just last month this company has agreed partnership with Canonical, a UK-based company which is known as the creator and developer of Ubuntu operating system some of us are very familiar with. Ubuntu OS has been available for PCs for a long time now, but this company created a mobile version of this OS (Ubuntu Touch) as well and we’ve seen it in action when Canonical showcased it on one of the Nexus handset a while back, I really don’t recall which one was it. Ubuntu was also shown off on Meizu MX3 a while back and it will be arriving on Meizu handsets officially in Q1 2015 according to the agreement which Canonical and Meizu signed.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • KitKat BSPs support TI Sitara and BeagleBone Black

      Adeneo announced Android 4.4.4 (KitKat) BSPs for the TI Sitara AM335x and Sitara AM437x development platforms and the AM335x-based BeagleBone Black SBC.

      Adeneo Embedded is a Platinum Member of the TI Design Network, and has previously released a number of Linux and Android BSPs (board support packages) for Texas Instruments processors and development boards. In Feb. 2013, for example, Adeneo announced an Android BSP for the TI OMAP 5 family of system-on-chips.

    • £50 MIPS is a micro-computer running Android and Linux

      Rapberri Pis are all the rage these days, but now there’s a new kid on the micro-computing block. Unveiled by British chip design company Imagination Technologies, the MIPS Creator CI20 is being dubbed as a rival mini-comp to the venerable Pi.

    • Creator CI20 is an Android or Linux-powered Raspberry Pi competitor
    • Phones

      • Android

        • A video history of Android

          Today, Android is the world’s most pervasive mobile operating system on the planet, powering millions of smartphones, tablets, wearables, and more. But that wasn’t always the case, and Android’s public life started from humble beginnings just about six years ago.

        • Android motorcycle helmet open for pre-order

          Skully announced a limited public pre-order round for its Android-based head-up display motorcycle helmet, available for $1,499 through Jan. 8.

          The “world’s first augmented reality motorcycle helmet,” was a record-breaking $2.8 million Indiegogo success this summer, says Skully. (The frozen Indiegogo page shows a total of $2.44 million, but hey, it’s still a lot of money.) The helmets are now shipping, and beginning Monday, anyone can order the smart helmet, as long as you have $1,499 left in your holiday gift fund.

        • ​Lollipop 5.01 review: The Android release we’ve been waiting for

          Is it finally safe to upgrade to Android 5 after the recent release of Android 5.01? Based on my experiences with my pair of 2013 Nexus 7 tablets, the answer is an unqualified yes.

        • 10 of the best Android apps from November 2014

          November sure was a busy month for new apps and notable updates; from photo recognition, to launchers, to Biz Stone’s new app for sharing random thoughts.

        • Top 10 Android Apps For November 2014

Free Software/Open Source

Leftovers

  • Defence/Police/Secrecy/Aggression

    • You Couldn’t Make It Up

      Tony Blair names Henry Kissinger as his role model.

    • Tony Blair’s wealth estimated at £10m

      Tony Blair has insisted that his much-criticised business dealings with dubious governments round the world have not been as lucrative as people think – as one of his staff suggested his wealth amounted to about £10m.

  • Finance

    • Billionaires Featured Four Times As Often As the Poor on TV News

      In June 2014, Frederick Reese’s Mint Press report highlighted the fact that the advocacy group Fairness & Accuracy in Reporting (FAIR) conducted a study showing that the three major broadcast newscasts – ABC World News, CBS Evening News, and NBC Nightly News – featured billionaires almost four times as often as individuals affected by poverty. Poverty is an issue that affects 50 million Americans, a significantly larger number of individuals than the 482 billionaires that these newscasts covered.

    • It’s official: America is now No. 2

      Hang on to your hats, America.

      And throw away that big, fat styrofoam finger while you’re about it.

      There’s no easy way to say this, so I’ll just say it: We’re no longer No. 1. Today, we’re No. 2. Yes, it’s official. The Chinese economy just overtook the United States economy to become the largest in the world. For the first time since Ulysses S. Grant was president, America is not the leading economic power on the planet.

      It just happened — and almost nobody noticed.

      The International Monetary Fund recently released the latest numbers for the world economy. And when you measure national economic output in “real” terms of goods and services, China will this year produce $17.6 trillion — compared with $17.4 trillion for the U.S.A.

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • ALEC Fumes: Transparency Threatens Corporate Free Speech!

      After spending hundreds of millions of undisclosed funds on state and federal elections, the corporate members of the American Legislative Exchange Council are demanding that state legislators preserve their “right” to anonymously spend money on politics and curry favor with elected officials, and to thwart shareholder efforts to hold the corporations they own accountable.

  • Censorship

  • Privacy

  • Civil Rights

12.05.14

Links 5/12/2014: Image of Meizu MX4, Tizen 2.3 Rev1 SDK, $65 MIPS Development Board, YotaPhone 2

Posted in News Roundup at 8:08 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

  • Open Washing, Kali Story, and Fedora RC4

    In the Linuxphere today Adam Williamson announced Fedora 21 Final Release Candidate 4. Lifehacker is running an interview with Kali developer Mati Aharoni and the Linux Foundation released a study on Linux usage trends. Patrick Masson discusses “openwashing” and Linux gaming reaches new milestones. In software news Opera 26 was released, Eric Geier presents firewall options, and The Register features 10 “freeware apps” for Linux.

  • Unhappy Node.js users fork the Joyent-run project, creating community-driven io.js

    The Node.js server-side Javascript runtime is today’s hot thing. You might say it’s the Ruby on Rails of the ’10s. Where developers used to code in Perl and PHP, then Ruby/Rails, today’s startup-fueled web-development world is all about Javascript on the server, and Node is the grease that makes it all go.

  • The Ongoing Wars Against Free Tech

    We’re still suspicious of their motives and know they would destroy us tomorrow if they could — but that doesn’t worry us, because they can’t. They have too much on their plate as they fight for survival. But even if they didn’t we still wouldn’t be afraid — not of them, nor of Oracle or anyone else who’d like nothing better than to squish us under their thumbs. We’ve won. As Dwight Merriman, co-founder of DoubleClick – a closed company if ever there was one — told me recently when I asked him about open source in the enterprise, “I think it’s mainstream.” He should know; he’s on our side now.

    These days the future of FOSS is pretty secure; we’re not going anywhere anytime soon. We even seem to be slowly gaining the upper hand on the patent front, with many recent court rulings taking the wind out of the trolls’ sails, if you’ll excuse the cliche.

  • Web Browsers

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

    • Fraudulent apps stalk Apple’s App Store

      The scale of the problem became apparent in an open source project where I volunteer, the Apache OpenOffice community. For several months, the user support mailing list has been bothered with apparently random questions — some very angry — from people seeking support for an iPad app. The community has been confused by these questions, since they have nothing to do with any work at Apache; Apache OpenOffice doesn’t even have an iOS version.

  • Funding

  • BSD

    • OpenBSD-Forked Bitrig Finally Sees Its Initial Release

      Back in 2012 OpenBSD got forked as Bitrig and as of this week the initial release is finally available.

      Bitrig launched to focus on supporting modern architectures, a focus on LLVM/Clang rather than GCC, and other modern development focuses compared to OpenBSD carrying a lot of legacy support.

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

  • Project Releases

  • Licensing

    • Become a Conservancy Supporter Today!

      The current Zeitgeist of the broader Open Source and Free Software community incubated his disturbing mindset. Our community suffers now from regular and active cooption by for-profit interests. The Trade Association Executive’s fundraising claim — which probably even bears true in their subset of the community — shows the primary mechanism of cooption: encourage funding only from a few, big sources so they can slowly but surely dictate project policy.

  • Openness/Sharing

    • Open Access/Content

Leftovers

  • CIOs fight back in battle for control of ICT spending

    CIOs are under pressure from their line-of-business colleagues who are reportedly exerting greater influence over IT purchasing decisions, according to a newly released global study.

    The shift away from CIOs has caused them to change their priorities for their businesses as they turn to new measures to regain control of ICT spending.

  • Science

    • To address tech’s diversity woes, start with the vanishing Comp Sci classroom

      In May 2014 at the all-girls Emma Willard School in upstate New York, nearly a third of the school’s 300+ students were preparing for their final Advanced Placement (AP) exams. But exactly three were studying for the AP Computer Science exam—and they weren’t doing so on campus. The school (full disclosure: my alma mater) completely eliminated its computer science program in 2009.

  • Security

    • Sony Pictures leak shows employees used worst passwords ever

      Everyone is bad at passwords; that’s nothing new. But if you’re working at a high-profile studio like Sony, perhaps you should choose a better password than “s0ny123″ or “password.”

    • Google Can Now Tell You’re Not a Robot With Just One Click

      On Wednesday, Google announced that many of its “Captchas”—the squiggled text tests designed to weed out automated spambots—will be reduced to nothing more than a single checkbox next to the statement “I’m not a robot.” No more typing in distorted words or numbers; Google says it can, in many cases, tell the difference between a person or an automated program simply by tracking clues that don’t involve any user interaction. The giveaways that separate man and machine can be as subtle as how he or she (or it) moves a mouse in the moments before that single click.

    • “No CAPTCHA reCAPTCHA” is as annoying as reCAPTCHA if…

      When completing an online form, proving that you’re not a robot can be very annoying. Sometimes even frustrating, especially if the website uses reCAPTCHA or a similar implementation of a system that asks you to decipher some cryptic text.

      I don’t use reCAPTCHA on this website, but I do encounter it on other websites. So it was heart-warming to learn that Google has released a new implementation of reCAPTCHA called No CAPTCHA reCAPTCHA that doesn’t come with reCAPTCHA’s annoying aspects.

      The official announcement has it that “a significant number of users will be able to securely and easily verify they’re human without actually having to solve a CAPTCHA. Instead, with just a single click, they’ll confirm they are not a robot.”

      What’s not to like about that? But is it as simple as that? And how does the system know that the entity completing a form is a human and not an automated script? The simplest way to find out is to try and complete an online form protected from bots by No CAPTCHA reCAPTCHA.

    • Security advisories for Wednesday
    • Unhappy Node.js users fork the Joyent-run project, creating community-driven io.js
  • Defence/Police/Secrecy/Aggression

    • How I was censored by The Guardian for writing about Israel’s war for Gaza’s gas

      After writing for The Guardian for over a year, my contract was unilaterally terminated because I wrote a piece on Gaza that was beyond the pale. In doing so, The Guardian breached the very editorial freedom the paper was obligated to protect under my contract. I’m speaking out because I believe it is in the public interest to know how a Pulitizer Prize-winning newspaper which styles itself as the world’s leading liberal voice, casually engaged in an act of censorship to shut down coverage of issues that undermined Israel’s publicised rationale for going to war.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

  • Finance

    • A political statement – not a principled plan

      With more money available the prices of houses at the lower end will increase – a bribe to current homeowners with houses valued between £125k and £750k – exactly those swing voters predominantly located in marginal constituencies.

    • Chicago Tribune Ignores Experts On New City-Wide Minimum Wage Increase

      Chicago City Council Voted To Increase Minimum Wage To $13 Per Hour In 2019. On December 2, Chicago’s 50-member city council “overwhelmingly” approved a plan to increase the city’s minimum wage to $13 per hour by 2019 with only five alderman opposing the measure. Chicago will raise its minimum wage to $10 next year, and increase the minimum wage “by steps of 50 cents and $1″ until the $13 dollar an hour mark is reached in 2019. Approximately 400,000 workers in the city will be affected by the increase. [Associated Press, 12/2/14]

    • Zero-hours contracts are forcing me out of teaching

      I love teaching. It is what I was born to do. I’m a thirtysomething further education teacher with a first class degree, a PGCE, qualified teacher status and two subject specialisms, who has repeatedly been rated outstanding in my teaching.

      I’m also a parent of a 15-year-old child with an autistic spectrum disorder and straight after I have written this piece, I will be leaving teaching.

      I’m not unusual. I’ve been on zero-hours contracts for some time and it has finally got to me. I’m tired of thinking I’ve secured a future for me and my child, tired of thinking I won’t have to worry about whether we both eat or whether we have heating, tired of worrying how we will cope if my child loses their school coat. As I explained yesterday on 5Live, I’ve decided to leave teaching for a supermarket job that will give me the security of knowing how much I’ll have available to pay my bills each month.

  • Privacy

    • Securing Blockchain.info Users with Tor and SSL

      Over the past couple of weeks there has been a marked increase in the number of man-in-the-middle (MITM) attacks against Tor users of web based Bitcoin wallet provider Blockchain.info. One user reported 63 bitcoin stolen, and there were many other examples as the thefts continued despite warnings to users. The attacks were so successful that Blockchain resorted to blocking all traffic to the wallet service from Tor exit nodes.

    • Sifting Fact from Fiction with All Writs and Encryption: No Backdoors

      Following recent reports in the Wall Street Journal and Ars Technica, there’s been new interest in the government’s use of a relatively obscure law, the All Writs Act. According to these reports, the government has invoked the All Writs Act in order to compel the assistance of smartphone manufacturers in unlocking devices pursuant to a search warrant. The reports are based on orders from federal magistrate judges in Oakland and New York City issued to Apple and another unnamed manufacturer (possibly also Apple) respectively, requiring them to bypass the lock screen on seized phones and enable law enforcement access.

    • Congress Quietly Decides To Delete Key NSA Reform In CRomnibus Agreement

      You may recall, back in June, that there was a key House vote that took NSA supporters by surprise. An amendment to the Defense Appropriations bill pushed by a bi-partisan team of Thomas Massie, Jim Sensenbrenner and Zoe Lofgren passed overwhelmingly, with a plan to slam the door shut on questionable NSA “backdoor searches” (as described in detail earlier). The House voted 293 to 123, making it a pretty clear and overwhelming statement that Congress did not, in fact, support such practices by the NSA.

    • Use Tor Browser, get your computer blacklisted

      But I was surprised today when I tried to use it from Tor Browser and it failed to generate a short URL. Instead, I got this message: “Your computer is blacklisted; cannot make ur1s!”

  • Civil Rights

    • An ‘Entertaining’ Lesson on How Cops Can ‘Win the Media’ After They Kill

      The class, taught by PR agent Rick Rosenthal, focused on such topics as “Managing the Media When Things Get Ugly (Think Ferguson).” A flyer promoting the class promised, “In addition to the Ferguson case study, this fast-paced class is jam-packed with the essential strategies and tactics, skills and techniques that will help you WIN WITH THE MEDIA!”

      Sound boring? Not at all! “The training is also highly entertaining,” the flyer emphasized. “You will learn a lot, and you’ll have fun doing it!”

    • Many Convicted of Crimes They Didn’t Commit

      Why are people falsely convicted? The reasons include mistaken witness identification, false confession, official misconduct, perjury, false accusation, and false or misleading forensic evidence. As Lavender reports, “The factors involved in a wrongful conviction vary depending on the crime.” In child sexual abuse cases, for instance, over 80% of exonerations involve perjury or false accusation. By contrast, in sexual assault cases, a majority of exonerations hinge on mistaken witness identification.

    • Baggage-theft ring busted at JFK Airport

      Seven contractors were rounded up for swiping electronic items, jewelry and other items from checked baggage at Kennedy Airport’s Terminals 4 and 7 between 2012 and June of this year, officials said. The thieves would then sell the items they stole.

    • In NYT’s Retelling of Eric Garner’s Death, the Officer’s Arm Has a Mind of Its Own

      It’s debatable whether or not you’d refer to Garner as resisting; he’s certainly loudly protesting that he’d done nothing wrong, and he does not appear eager to put his hands behind his back to be handcuffed. But that “resistance” lasted a few seconds before he was choked.

    • NYPD Invokes Notorious Glomar Response

      The Glomar Response dates back to the 1970s, and allows agencies to respond that they can “neither confirm or deny” as a response to requests for information made under the federal Freedom of Information Act, when responding might compromise national security or privacy. As CJ Ciaramella writes, “The Glomar doctrine gives agencies the obvious power to hide the existence of records, but it also allows agencies to short-circuit the appeal process, since requestors can’t file an appeal for records they don’t know exist.” In Abdur-Rashid’s case, the NYPD argued that responding to his request would disclose, in Campbell’s words, “sensitive information about the department’s investigative techniques.”

    • Wash. Post Digs In Its Heels On Botched Immigration Fact Check
  • Internet/Net Neutrality

    • What Canada can teach the U.S. about net neutrality

      If there are two ways in which the Internet is similar in the United States and Canada, it’s that it’s slow and expensive in both places relative to many developed countries. The big difference, however, is that Canada is looking into doing something about it.

      The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission—the northern equivalent of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC)—is in its second week of hearings on how to ensure that Internet subscribers get access to the newest and fastest services at the best prices possible.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • TTIP Update XLIV

      One reason for this hiatus is that there has been a change at the top. Karel De Gucht has relinquished his post, which has been taken by the Swede Cecilia Malmström. She is adopting a very different style, not least in terms of her attitude to the public. Faced by the growing scepticism about TTIP’s benefits, and anger over its complete lack of any meaningful transparency, Malmström has taken a conciliatory approach, promising more openness, some of which has now been announced.

      But Malmström is still trotting out the same old misinformation about TTIP. In a recent opinion piece she published in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, the paragraph about ISDS is particularly pernicious. Malmström says that European member states have signed a total of 1400 agreements that include ISDS; this is presumably to “prove” that ISDS is completely normal and totally harmless. Neither is true.

    • Copyrights

      • ISPs Must Take Responsibility For Sony Movie Leaks, MP Says

        As the fallout from the Sony hack continues, who is to blame for the leak of movies including Fury, which has been downloaded a million times? According to the UK Prime Minister’s former IP advisor, as “facilitators” web-hosts and ISPs must step up and take some blame.

      • Court Orders French ISPs to Block The Pirate Bay

        The Paris Court has ordered French ISPs to block access to The Pirate Bay. The legal action, brought by anti-piracy group SCPP, resulted in an injunction ordering local service providers to “implement all necessary measures” to render not only the site inaccessible, but also its proxies.

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