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09.07.10

Links 7/9/2010: Debate About Choices in GNU/Linux, Linux Mint 9 Fluxbox is Released

Posted in News Roundup at 5:15 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Gaming modchips – a cat n’ mouse game without end?

    Sony recently put libertarians offside by removing the ability to run Linux on the PS3, which would have been a key selling point for some people. If you read between the lines it was clear that Sony removed the Linux option in an effort to close loopholes for hackers, but it still didn’t sit well with people that Sony was stripping out legitimate features. Hackers set out to restore the Linux option and one can only wonder whether Sony’s actions motivated efforts to develop the wider debug mode hack.

    If the Digital Rights Management wars have taught us anything it’s that anti-piracy efforts generally penalise honest users while failing to stop the pirates getting their own way. Sony’s strike against Linux is a classic example of such an effect and appears set to haunt Sony for quite some time.

  • Migrating a Small Business To Linux

    What is the value proposition in getting a small business to make the switch to Linux?

    Not able to offer a clear answer?

    Then consider this as one possibility – control. Offering small businesses control over their own technology is something that most managers are unaware is even needed. After all, something breaks, they call whomever handles repairs, the problem is fixed.

  • Why Do We Love Linux?

    When you’re a fan of Linux, any blog post entitled “27 Good Reasons to Love Linux” is going to be impossible to resist.

    No wonder, then, that a recent post with just that title has created endless fodder for conversation in the Linux blogosphere of late.

  • LPI

  • Server

  • IBM

    • IBM Code Unfetters Virtual Workloads

      Some of the first fruits of a European Union-funded project led by IBM (IBM) are making their way into the field of cloud computing, in the form of a virtual machine migration technology.

      The technology, sprouting from the Reservoir (Resources and Services Virtualization without Barriers) program, offers a way to move a live, virtualized workload from one server to another, without the need for the two locations to share the same storage space.

    • Prices Jacked on Power Systems Tape Drives and Expansion Drawers

      And so, in announcement letter 310-236, you will find that selected peripherals used across the Power Systems product line, whether you install IBM i, AIX, or Linux on the boxes, have higher sticker prices than they did before the August 17 announcement day.

  • Kernel Space

    • Linux 2.4.37.10 + 2.4 EOL plans
    • Graphics Stack

      • Intel’s Sandybridge Graphics On Linux

        Back in February we reported on the first signs of open-source support for Intel’s Sandybridge, a.k.a. their sixth-generation Intel graphics processor integrated on their upcoming CPUs that succeed the Clarkdale/Arrandale CPUs. The Sandybridge hardware still has not launched nor will it until late this year or early next year, but the open-source support has been underway for months and from time to time we see new Linux code patches related to Sandybridge.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC)

      • KDE Brazil Team Spreads the Word at FISL

        KDE is very active in South America as any readers of the blogs at Live Blue will know already. The KDE Brazil team attended this year’s FISL, one of the major free software events in South America, meeting up with some new users of KDE software and spreading the word of Konqui.

    • GNOME Desktop

  • Distributions

    • Does Linux Come in Too Many Flavors?

      This isn’t the first time that Linux has been criticized for appearing so many flavors that development effort becomes redundant. The argument doesn’t stand on its own, though. One has to include the fact that the many faces of Linux—all the choices—have constantly taken it in the direction of new opportunities. In fact, it’s highly questionable whether Linux even needs any sort of dominance on the desktop at this point to continue to foster meaningful innovation.

    • Choices Choices Choices

      So you still think that there are too many versions of Linux? Sure, we have hundreds. Has that stopped anyone? I don’t think so. People will gravitate to those most popular of distributions. Ubuntu, Fedora, Mint, openSUSE, and Mandriva almost always get the majority share. Effectively, that means that in most people’s minds there are only six versions of Linux. Whether or not people realize that there are more is irrelevant. When you go to those distribution’s websites, most of them will present you with a quick link to there most popular version of their distribution, creating the illusion that “there is only one [insert distro name here].” You also have this overwhelmingly wonderful little thing happening in our community… it’s called freedom. As users become accustomed to their distribution of choice they seek to make it their own. This leads to many little Ubuntu derivatives with small but loyal followings. Occasionally, these derivatives become powerful (Ubuntu/Debian, SuSE/Slackware, Mandrake/Red Hat). The most notable outside the examples I just listed is Blag. Blag started as a project to create a completely free version of Fedora. Blag is notable not for its following but for the Linux-libre kernel that was developed off of some Blag software scripts.

    • Even More Linux Distros That Don’t Suck

      LegacyOS – This was formally known as TeenPup which is based on PuppyLinux. The main purpose of this distro is to ensure a smooth user experience on hardware that’s 5-10 years old. If you have an old machine laying around and are looking for a decent suite of software then look no further. Don’t plan on doing any intense processing with it but basic usage it’s great.

    • New Releases

    • Red Hat Family

      • Mark Bohannon to Lead Red Hat Governmental Affairs and Public Policy

        Red Hat, Inc. (NYSE: RHT), the world’s leading provider of open source solutions, today announced that Mark Bohannon will join the company as Vice President of Corporate Affairs and Global Public Policy on Oct. 1, 2010. He will lead Red Hat’s worldwide team representing the company’s interests before policy makers in government, industry consortia, and other venues regarding issues such as technology and innovation policy, open source and standards adoption, intellectual property legislation, government technology initiatives, and tax regulation.

      • NCDEX achieves 99.99% uptime by standardizing its IT Architecture on Red Hat Enterprise Linux

        Red Hat, Inc, the world’s leading provider of open source solutions, announced that National Commodities and Derivatives Exchange Limited (NCDEX) is powering its mission-critical IT infrastructure on Red Hat Enterprise Linux. With Red Hat Enterprise Linux, NCDEX has designed a reliable, stable, high-performance and cost-effective IT infrastructure that has delivered 99.99 percent uptime for its business applications.

      • Fedora

        • Fedora conference in Switzerland next week

          FUDCon Zurich is the second FUDCon of the year and the only one in the Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) region. As well as many Fedora and Red Hat developers from the region, a number of big US-based Fedora names are expected to attend. Jared Smith, who has been working as Fedora Project Leader since the end of June, will be there, and Fedora Engineering Manager Tom “spot” Callaway, Release Engineer Jesse Keating, ‘Fedora QA Community Monkey’ Adam Williamson and Fedora board member Máirín Duffy will also make the trip across the Atlantic.

    • Debian Family

      • Debian Installer with ZFS

        Long time no see… Not much hacking in the last few months. Not much ranting either (some of you I’m sure will appreciate ;-).

        Anyway, I recently grew excited to learn that ZFS is coming to Debian. I decided to bite the bullet, patched the missing bits in GRUB and Parted, a few small changes in D-I and there’s now a modified Debian Installer with ZFS support for you to play with. Enjoy!

      • Canonical/Ubuntu

        • Sudo vulnerability
        • Security advisories for Tuesday
        • Canonical’s Attention to Detail is Starting to Show Up in Ubuntu 10.10 Big Time

          These are not all. Things yet to come include new sound theme, a new font, new wallpapers, more community contributed themes to name a few. Watch this space.

        • Well, There Is No i8xx Fix For Ubuntu 10.10

          Back in July we reported on a GEM-free UMS Intel driver coming about that was targeted for owners of vintage Intel 8xx series hardware to circumvent the stability issues and other problems they commonly have encountered since switching to Intel’s newer driver stack with kernel mode-setting and the Graphics Execution Manager. Canonical hoped to ship this UMS code-path in Ubuntu 10.10 that would then be enabled for those with these older Intel integrated graphics processors.

          This GEM-free UMS code-path was never merged though into the xf86-video-intel DDX, as it would add about 50,000 lines of code into this open-source X.Org driver and would likely receive little in the way of work and testing. Adding back this UMS code-path also didn’t solve all of the problems nor does it address the fundamental issue of KMS/GEM not working well for the old Intel chipsets.

        • Previewing and tweaking Ubuntu 10.10

          On September 1st, the Ubuntu development project issued the beta version of Ubuntu 10.10 — aka “Maverick Meerkat” — as a step toward achieving a stable release by October 10th. If a quick test of the beta by LinuxTrends is any indication, this new Ubuntu version could be the most user-friendly, full-featured desktop Linux distribution ever.

        • A Quick Look at Ubuntu 10.10

          Other than that, I haven’t really noticed all that much different from 10.04. It could be possible that there are still changes coming down the pipe at this point in development, or that the release may be focused on perfecting the previous version rather than trying to be daring as most October Ubuntu releases are. If the problems with the splash screen and installer options are fixed before release, I can easily see myself giving this a perfect score. From the looks of things, it appears that Ubuntu 10.10 is going to be outstanding.

        • “Saner Defaults” remix of Ubuntu beta released

          A beta of an unofficial remix of Ubuntu 10.04.1, the “Saner Defaults Remix”, which offers “better default choices” and a Mono-free experience, has been released. The developer also hopes that the saner configuration will be better for newcomers.

          The “Saner Defaults Remix” release replaces Evolution with Mozilla’s Thunderbird 2.0 and the Lightning calendar add-on, Nautilus file manager with the simplified nautilus-elementary and Empathy with Pidgin as it is “a more stable and mature application”. Mono applications are also swapped out with FSpot replaced by gthumb and Gnote standing in for Tomboy; the presence of Mono based applications has been controversial with some and the Saner Defaults Remix looks to avoid that issue.

        • Ubuntu 10.10 beta tips up

          Ubuntu 10.10, code-named “Maverick Meerkat”, got some notice in mid-August after Canonical slapped multi-touch features into the updated Linux OS. The final version of Maverick Meerkat is still set to appear on the brilliantly chosen release date of 10 October 2010 if the feedback from this beta release doesn’t cause any delays.

        • Flavours and Variants

          • Linux Mint 9 Fluxbox Released

            The Linux Mint team has released Linux Mint 9 Fluxbox, the last of the official versions for this release cycle. Linux Mint 9 Fluxbox comes with all of the updates and new features in Linux Mint 9 built around the Fluxbox windows manager.

          • Linux Mint Debian (201009) released!

            Today is very important for Linux Mint. It’s one day to remember in the history of our project as we’re about to maintain a new distribution, a rolling one, which promises to be faster, more responsive and on which we’re less reliant on upstream components. Linux Mint Debian Edition (LMDE) comes with a Debian base, which we transformed into a live media and on top of which we added a new installer. It’s rougher and in some aspects not as user-friendly as our other editions, it’s very young but it will improve continuously and rapidly, and it brings us one step closer to a situation where we’re fully in control of the system without being impacted by upstream decisions.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Pocketbook launches five e-readers at IFA 2010

      FIVE E-READERS HAVE been launched by Pocketbook International at IFA 2010 that have features including text to speech, accelerometers and Linux and Android operating systems.

    • Alcatel-Lucent fleshes out Apps Enablement strategy with OpenPlug purchase
    • Alcatel-Lucent acquires OpenPlug
    • : Empower Technologies Investment in Pixon Imaging Expand Sales, Products and Technologies

      As part of the agreement, Empower will provide a license to Pixon Imaging for the right to use, OEM, and to distribute LEOs (Linux Embedded Operating System) software in their products.

    • Phones

      • WebOS 2.0 beta screenshot extravaganza

        There’s also default app selection for filetypes, which is a welcome addition we’ve enjoyed on our Android sets. Just in case all the screenshots go poof, we’ve got them in a gallery below. Let your imagination run wild, or at least in a bigger fence.

      • Nokia/MeeGo

        • Neofonie WeTab now runs MeeGo Linux

          The Neofonie WeTab gained grabbed a lot of headlines when the company first introduced it a few months ago. And why not? The tablet is kind of everything the Apple iPad is not. It has a nice big 11.6 inch, 1366 x 768 pixel HD capacitive toushcreen display. It supports HDMI output, has 2 USB ports, and a 1.3MP camera. It also packs 802.11a/b/g/n WiFi and Bluetooth 2.1.

        • Meego tips up on the Wetab

          GERMAN TABLET MAKER Wetab GmbH said that its tablet, the Wetab, which has been developed with the finest minds at Intel, will be the first one based on the Meego operating system.

        • VIDEO: WeTab – All systems MeeGo

          We first got word of the WeTab (previously called the WePad) back in May, where we were led to understand that the 11.6-inch tablet would be running via a Linux OS and was all set for a July launch.

          And, after a number of delays the tablet has turned up at IFA, and it is indeed running Linux.

          But it is the Linux version that is most intriguing, for the WeTab OS is based on MeeGo – Intel and Nokia’s joint OS effort.

      • Android

        • Five critical apps for Android that you want to find on iOS

          One thing Google gets is the web. With ChromeToPhone you can push links, videos, text, directions, apps directly to your phone. You won’t find this baby on iOS.

          In case it isn’t already evident, I really dislike Apple’s iOS and their new frontier of closed systems. And, the difference between open and closed is not just academic, it limits your ability to do some really cool things with your expensive new toy.

        • Android Opens Up The Operating System For Innovation

          Over the past few years, quite a few Linux-based open mobile OS platforms have emerged: Bada from Samsung, LiMO from the LiMO Foundation, Moblin from Intel, Maemo from Nokia, MeeGO from Intel & Nokia (MeeGO = Moblin + Maemo), Android from Google, and ALP from Access. But Android’s well crafted software stack with software development kits (SDKs) and Novell developer kits (NDKs), ease of programming, Google’s support, large user community, and periodic releases have made it a global, open OS for the wireless future.

        • O2 releases Android 2.1 update for Dell’s Streak

          MOBILE OPERATOR O2 has rolled out Android 2.1 for Dell Streak users in the UK.

          Dell’s 5-inch Android smartphone tablet had been using the archaic Android 1.6 operating system since its launch. Dell has announced that Android 2.2, the current version of the Linux based operating system, will be arriving for its Streak at some point this year though it would not be drawn on specifics. So you can imagine the disappointment when users today were treated to a version that was debuted nine months ago and lacks Adobe Flash support.

    • Sub-notebooks

      • Free Jolicloud OS breathes new life into old Netbooks

        Got a Netbook collecting dust? Hey, it happens. Many users find that traditional operating systems, be they Linux or Windows, just don’t work well in compact, low-powered PCs. (I once tried running Vista on one. The horror, the horror.)

        Consider making a switch. Jolicloud is a new Linux-based OS that was designed expressly for Netbooks. Not sure about the “Linux” part? Don’t worry: Jolicloud has decidedly user-friendly trappings. It’s a snazzy, intuitive, well-rounded operating system; one that might just earn a permanent home on your mini PC.

    • Tablets

      • India unveils $35 laptop

        What this device can do is still not entirely clear, but we know some. It can browse the internet, do video conferencing and play media. It uses Linux for now and is solar powered so that it could be used by someone in a poor community.

Free Software/Open Source

  • What’s Next for Google Wave

    Google Wave is kind of like the Snuggie. You either immediately see its genius or can’t figure out why anyone would bother. When Google announced plans last month to shut down development of Wave and open source its code for anyone who wants it, some users were crushed while others just yawned. If you fall into the “I love Wave” camp, then you’ll be glad to know the Google Wave team has new plans for the now defunct project.

  • New Open Source Semantic Engine

    A semantic engine extracts the meaning of a document to organize it as partially structured knowledge. For example, you can submit a batch of news stories to a semantic engine and get back a tree categorisation according to the subjects they deal with.

  • Campsite a Hearty Content Management System for Journalists

    On the developer side, Campsite is built on the LAMP development stack and includes an object-oriented API so users can create their own plugins or alternative interfaces. There’s a robust developer community surrounding the app, but there are also a team of full-time developers working on the project who will quickly create additional features for a small fee.

  • Open Source: Vendors increasingly Turn to Open Source When Building Proprietary Software

    The Zenoss survey we cited in yesterday’s blog found that 98 percent of companies have Open Source software running somewhere in their companies. It turns out that even SAP is changing its mind about Open Source. SAP has long been a symbol of traditional proprietary software company. And in a previous world when things were more black and white, Open Source and proprietary software where distinctly different and opposite things. That distinction is not so clear any more. Claus von Riegen says at SAP that they’ve changed from asking, “Why open source?” to start asking “Why not?” Even Von Riegen’s title at SAP, “director of technology standards and open source”, highlights a change both in SAP strategy and thinking.

  • Open Source Microstock Agency: How Stock Photo Agency YayMicro.com was Created Using Only Open Source Technology
  • Harvest: an open-source tool for the validation and improvement of peptide identification metrics and fragmentation exploration
  • Asia not ready for key apps to go open source

    Organizations in Asia are not as ready to go open source for key business applications, experts in the region say. Over in the United Kingdom and United States, it is a different story with inclination growing, a survey has shown.

  • Events

  • Web Browsers

    • Software Bounties Work For Google, And Can Work Throughout the FLOSS Arena

      We’ve written before about the fact that both Mozilla and Google have been offering cash bounties for people who find bugs in their browsers, and it’s also worth noting that the concept of bounties is spreading out across the whole FOSS landscape. For example, Funambol has had good success with a bounty program focused on developers. Now there is new data out about actual cash being paid by Google for its Chrome-focused bug bounty effort, and it’s clear that the program makes a lot of sense for Google.

    • ‘Larry and Sergey’s HTML5 balls drained my resources’
    • Google Chrome Turns Two
    • Mozilla

      • MPL Alpha 2 released

        The MPL team is excited to announce the second Alpha draft of the next version of the Mozilla Public License.

        The text of Alpha 2 is available. We have also published a discussion document, including markup showing the changes made since Alpha 1 and an explanation of those changes.

  • SaaS

    • Skygone Cloud powers Open Source Web Mapping Suite – OpenGeo Cloud Edition

      Skygone Inc., a leader in geospatial cloud computing, today announces the launch of OpenGeo Cloud Edition; the first fully-supported, open source web-mapping software suite delivered to users via cloud computing.

    • Cloud computing: the mother of all lock-ins?

      Ingres points to open source portfolios such as Red Hat Cloud Foundations as particularly valuable because of their open APIs and interoperability.

      “Red Hat Cloud Foundations combines the Ingres, JBoss and Red Hat Enterprise Linux stack with the Deltacloud API to rapidly build applications that are portable between customers’ private clouds and the leading public cloud providers,” says Ingres.

  • Databases

    • Version 2.0 of NoSQL database Redis released

      Version 2.0 of the NoSQL database Redis database has been released with new features including virtual memory support, a hash datatype and publish/subscribe messaing. Development of Redis is assisted by VMware who sponsor Salvatore Sanfillippo and Pieter Noordhuis, lead developers of the project. Sanfillipo was hired by VMware in March.

  • Oracle

    • Major European MSP Partners Up with Oracle

      In an interesting twist, DSP Managed Services blends open source and closed source solutions. For instance, the company uses GroundWork Open Source to monitor customers’ networks, applications and databases. GroundWork, as you may recall, introduced new MSP pricing earlier this week.

    • Oracle’s Hurd for Phillips swap: What’s the customer relations impact?

      Oracle has a new customer relations front man: Former Hewlett-Packard CEO Mark Hurd. Oracle’s move to name former Hurd as co-president is going to be interesting to watch from a customer relations perspective. Why? Hurd’s arrival coincides with the departure of Charles Phillips.

  • CMS

    • JForce Project Management Component for Joomla Challenges Mainstream Systems

      The award winning Open Source Content Management System, Joomla!, celebrates its 5th birthday today and on the same day, JForce.com has released its full-featured project management system, JForce PM, built specifically for the same CMS. JForce brings to Joomla! all the features of the popular project management tools available on the web, but incorporated directly into a user’s Joomla! installation.

      Joomla! has experienced tremendous growth throughout its 5 year life and is currently utilized on millions of websites around the globe. For example, there are currently over 5,339 extensions exist for the Joomla! CMS. With recent approval from the Joomla! Extension Directory, JForce PM is positioned to become one of the staples of any business-centered Joomla! website.

  • Education

    • Open source goes to high school

      Before heading out to film this story on the Open High School of Utah, I wasn’t sure what to expect. I had a lot of the same questions most people would have about an online high school: What kind of students go to high school online? How are teachers building their curriculum from open educational resources and what does it look like? How are the students interacting with their teachers and other students in an online venue?

  • Business

    • Open source business intelligence

      In this podcast, Tim talks about various tools for ETL, reporting, and analytics like Pentaho and Talend — I really enjoyed our conversation as I definitely learned a few things!

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

    • EU survey on Free Software and standards: make your voice heard!

      The Free Software Foundation Europe is calling on European Free Software businesses to participate in a survey of business attitudes towards the acceptability of including patents in industry standards.

      This survey is a key component of a study that will play the major role in the EC’s reform of standardisation policy. It is open until September 17.

      A major theme in the survey is whether patents that cover standards should be licensed royalty-free (the W3C takes this approach), or whether they should instead be licensed under so-called “fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory terms” (FRAND).

    • GNU Guile 1.9.12 released
  • Project Releases

    • Cairo 1.10.0 available
    • uTorrent Linux Server Released, Client Coming Soon

      Earlier this year BitTorrent Inc. promised they would release a Linux client this summer, and today they are one step closer to achieving that goal. The company just released uTorrent Server for Linux, a daemonizable 32-bit binary of the uTorrent core, suited to those familiar with running programs from the command line. A full Linux client is expected to follow in the coming weeks.

    • First Alpha of uTorrent Server for Linux Released
    • CiviCRM 3.2.3 released

      You can download the release from SourceForge – select from the civicrm-stable section.
      The filenames include the 3.2.3 label: civicrm-3.2.3. Make sure you’re downloading correct version: for Drupal or Joomla.

  • Government

    • $50B Infrastructure Plan: Make it Open Source and Transparent

      This has been happening in the humanitarian and development field for the past few years. Through the Open Architecture Network, more than 3,000 projects have been uploaded to the system and range from low-income housing, health and education facilities, public-gathering points and transit nodes. Every project is held under a Creative Commons license allowing others to adapt and share innovative ideas. In less than a month, the system will launch a geo-based mobile app that will allow anyone to find local solutions or discover ones from afar. All managed by a handful of people.

  • Openness/Sharing

  • Web/Standards/Consortia

    • Google shows HTML5 love with bouncing balls

      Google’s line of ‘doodle’ home page designs has taken an eye-catching twist with the debut of an interactive bouncing ball design designed to show off the greatness of HTML5.

      In Google’s search page design for the day, as the cursor is moved around the page, the Google logo disintegrates into colourful, scattering and enlarging balls, an interactive feature that demonstrates the way html5 can render visual elements that usually require individual browser plug-ins.

    • W3C Extends Speech Framework to Asian Languages
    • HTML5 May Help Web Pages Talk, Listen

      Sometime in the near future, users might not only read Web pages but hold conversations with them as well, at least if a new activity group in the W3C (World Wide Consortium) bears fruit.

      The W3C is investigating the possibility of incorporating voice recognition and speech synthesis interfaces within Web pages. A new incubator group will file a report a year from now summarizing the feasibility of adding voice and speech features into HTML, the W3C’s standard for rendering Web pages.

    • Advertisers get hands stuck inside HTML5 database cookie jar

      Even casual Internet users know that if you want to hold your privacy in check, it’s good practice to clear out your browser cookies every once in a while. Our recent coverage about “zombie” Flash cookies has shown us, however, that simply clearing your browser cookies the old fashioned way isn’t always enough. As highlighted by a study out of UC Berkeley, some companies have begun using Flash-based cookies that not only recreate themselves when deleted without the user’s knowledge, they reach into the Flash storage bin for the just-deleted user info so that they can keep tracking you and your stored history instead of starting anew.

Leftovers

  • Democracy After Citizens United

    This is the lead article of a forum on the Supreme Court’s decision to strike down McCain-Feingold and what it means for our democracy.

    Over the course of this year, Boston Review has published four essays drawn from a lecture series at Harvard University. That series launched a five-year research project to understand and help to remedy the problem of “institutional corruption.”

    Institutional corruption does not refer to the knowing violation of any law or ethical rule. This is not the problem of Rod Blagojevich, or, more generally, of bad souls acting badly. It instead describes an influence, financial or otherwise, within an economy of influence, that weakens the effectiveness of an institution, especially by weakening public trust in that institution. (An “economy of influence” rather than the simpler “system of influence” to emphasize the reciprocal character of such influence, often requiring little or no direct coordination.)

    [...]

    Instead, this is “corruption” because it weakens the integrity of the institution, of Congress itself. The framers intended Congress to be “dependent upon the People alone.” But the private funding of public campaigns has bred within Congress a second, and conflicting, dependency. As with an alcoholic mother trying to care for her children, that conflicting dependency does not change the good intentions of members of Congress—they still want to serve the public interest they thought themselves elected to serve. But as with an alcoholic mother trying to care for her children, that conflicting dependency distracts members from their good intentions, directing their focus more and more toward the challenge of raising money.

  • Publishing

    • Joint Open Letter to International Publishers

      Scholarly journals and monographs are knowledge created by worldwide scientists and scholars. With the efforts of Chinese libraries and international publishers, China has introduced a large number of international full text STM journal databases in recent years, which has indeed improved the wide dissemination and sharing of knowledge, and has played an important role in the development of Chinese research and education.
      However, in recent years, the prices of international STM journals and their full text databases have continuously been increased well above the general CPI increase rate. Some went up annually at the rate of more than 10%, and a few have raised their prices even at an annual rate above 20%. This has dramatically pushed Chinese library acquisition expenses for international journals to double or even triple within no more than 10 years, causing some libraries to reduce the subscriptions. Facing the international financial crisis, many countries have kept their library budgets under strict caps or even cut library budgets, and Chinese libraries have also experienced severe pressures for rigorously controlling their subscription budgets.

    • “A completely new model for us”: The Guardian gives outsiders the power to publish for the first time

      The Guardian network comes at time when science blog networks populated by writers with particular — and highly focused — areas of expertise are proliferating. Last week, the Public Library of Science, a nonprofit publisher of open-access journals emphasizing the biological sciences, launched its own 11-blog network. PLoS Blogs joins Wired Science, Scientopia, and others. And, of course, science blogs have been in the news more than usual of late, with ScienceBlogs and the scandal that was PepsiGate. That scandal — in which PepsiCo tapped its own “experts” to contribute content to the otherwise proudly independent blog network — didn’t precipitate the Guardian’s own foray into science blog networking, which has been in the works since this spring. However, “it certainly accelerated everything,” Jha says. “I think there was soul-searching going on among the bloggers out there: ‘What do we do next? How do we do it?’ And that, in turn, gave the Guardian staff the sense that, okay, now is the time to do it.”

    • AP Begins Crediting Bloggers as News Sources

      In a letter to its members last week, Associated Press made the announcement that bloggers should be cited as a news source. This is a significant move from the AP, given that they have a history of not exactly ‘getting on’ with bloggers. Given that such a large news organisation has made a point of recognising bloggers as a viable news source, which they should have done a long time ago, it has much wider implications on how bloggers affect the news agenda and overall news industry. We’ve already seen some developments in this area, such as publishers employing bloggers on the ground, but I think this goes one further than that. The announcement has served to recognise the work that bloggers put into breaking and reporting stories. But interestingly they make a point of saying that they must credit information where it occured from a website, so you would hope that this would cover Twitter as well, given that so many stories break on here.

    • Some Newspapers, Tracking Readers Online, Shift Coverage

      Now, because of technology that can pinpoint what people online are viewing and commenting on, how much time they spend with an article and even how much money an article makes in advertising revenue, newspapers can make more scientific decisions about allocating their ever scarcer resources.

  • Schools

    • Repeat After Me: We Can’t Have Great Schools Without Great Teachers

      And when you start with that simple truth, the solutions become pretty clear. Let’s recruit our best and brightest. Develop the ones we have to become better teachers. Reward the ones who are doing a great job. Recruit and train talented principals. And after trying everything, help find another job for those teachers who aren’t cutting it.

    • Schools: The Disaster Movie

      Then Guggenheim mentioned another film he’d made—An Inconvenient Truth—and Canada snapped to attention. “I had absolutely seen it,” Canada recalls, “and I was stunned because it was so powerful that my wife told me we couldn’t burn incandescent bulbs anymore. She didn’t become a zealot; she just realized that [climate change] was serious and we have to do something.” Canada agreed to be interviewed by Guggenheim, but still had his doubts. “I honestly didn’t think you could make a movie to get people to care about the kids who are most at risk.”

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • Congolese chimpanzees face new ‘wave of killing’ for bushmeat

      The scientists who carried out the study believe that the region, in the north of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), is home to at least 35,000 of the unusually large sub-species of chimpanzees. This is probably the largest population of chimps in Africa, but such is the hunger for chimp meat that the researchers believe the animals are facing a “major and urgent threat” and that northern DRC is now “witnessing the beginning of a massive ape decline.”

    • How the open source culture could impact climate change

      Ever wonder what you get when you leverage the power of the open source culture to combat global warming? I didn’t. Until I heard about Coalition of the Willing–an animated film about an online war against global warming in a post-Copenhagen world. This is collaboration, participation, and meritocracy coming together to tackle a world-wide issue.

    • BP oil spill robots to report on water pollution

      The news comes ahead of the release of BP’s internal report, expected to be published in the coming weeks, in which BP is widely reported to admit engineers misread pressure data, among other errors. BP has not commented.

  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

    • Breaking News on EFF Location Privacy Win: Courts May Require Search Warrants for Cell Phone Location Records

      This morning, the Third Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia issued its highly anticipated ruling in a hotly contested cell phone location privacy case. EFF filed a friend-of-the-court brief and participated at oral argument in the case, arguing that federal electronic privacy law gives judges the discretion to deny government requests for cell phone location data when the government fails to show probable cause that a crime has been committed.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality/DRM

    • TalkTalk rapped for failing to talk about malware trial

      ISP TalkTalk has been reprimanded by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) for failing to disclose enough about a malware system it was launching

      The ICO said the ISP should have told both it and customers about the trial.

      The system is controversial because it collects the urls of websites visited by TalkTalk customers.

    • Open the airwaves to close the bandwidth shortage

      OpenBTS provides the answer. It’s a simple, open source framework that can create a GSM cellular network at one-tenth current costs. It’s licensed under the AGPL.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • EBay, Facebook, Vivendi, General Motors, Ford: Intellectual Property

      Red Hat Seeks Early Examples of ‘Fedora’ Mark Use

      Red Hat Inc. asked members of the Fedora community to gather up examples of the use of the “Fedora” mark for possible infringement actions, according to a request posted on the FedoraProject.org website.

      The legal department of the Raleigh, North Carolina-based software company is seeking to protect marks used with the Fedora, a Linux-based open-source operating system. Fedora is being created by Red Hat employees and the user community.

      Among the items sought are photos or scans of anything like CD’s, T-shirts, key rings and mouse pads, plus webpage printouts from before Jan. 30, 2007. The company is also seeking issues of the Linux magazine and other publications that may mention Fedora published before that date.

    • Copyrights

      • Police in File-Sharing Raids Across Europe, WikiLeaks Host Targeted

        Police in up to 14 countries around Europe have coordinated to carry out raids against suspected file-sharing servers this morning. Locations in The Netherlands, Czech Republic and Hungary were targeted but Sweden appears to have borne the brunt of the action. Seven locations including PRQ, which hosts WikiLeaks, have been raided.

      • Musopen Project Aims to Truly Liberate Already Free Music

        To get in on the project, head over to Kickstarter and pledge a couple of bucks. As we’ve mentioned before, Kickstarter is a great, risk-free way for people to donate money to a worthy cause. If the group reaches its goal, you’re on the hook for your donation. If it doesn’t, you won’t be asked to pony up any cash at all. With the project a mere $700 away from it’s goal, Musopen is likely to raise the funds to rent the orchestra they need to realize the dream of finally liberating music that’s already been free for years.

      • Copyright 4 Educators (ZA)
      • CC Movie
      • Copyright Criminals
      • ACTA

        • Where are ACTA’s “political corruption” provisions gone?

          In a public discourse it is common that angry crowds describe their governments as corrupt, swear on their government policies. That is not what I am talking about here. That would be emotional ranting but not actual political corruption. The case here is different, and it is a clear case. The language was largely borrowed from the so-called development agenda process at WIPO.

        • Secret Copyright Treaty Draft Leaked After Washington Talks

          Another round of negotiations, another leak: Knowledge Ecology International (KEI) published what it says is the latest draft of the secret Anti-Counterfeit Trade Agreement (ACTA) over the weekend.

Clip of the Day

Motorola Droid 2 v Droid X


Credit: TinyOgg

Links 7/9/2010: Backports and Debian, GDB 7.2 is Released

Posted in News Roundup at 6:21 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Desktop

    • Experiment: I’ve Got My Editor Using Linux

      Vincent’s computer is going to be spending a week running Linux. We decided to give him Ubuntu, for two reasons: the first is its excellent reputation for usability, and the second because of Wubi. This tool allows you can install Linux on the same hard drive as Windows—without having to repartition. It’s perfect for giving it a go without any stress, and uninstall it in Windows if you decide it’s not for you.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • FOX Desktop and some graphical apps

      Before I show you another one like that, here are a few applications that are — and some that aren’t — inter-related.

      This is qutim.

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC)

      • Third beta of KDE PIM Suite uses Akonadi

        With KDE PIM Beta 3, version 4.4.93, the KDE Project developers have presented a development preview version of the Kontact personal information manager, which is built on the Akonadi framework for storing data. Originally, the integration of Akonadi was already planned for KDE 4.0, but it kept getting postponed. In version 4.4 of the desktop environment, the KDE address book is the first KDE PIM Suite application to use Akonadi.

    • GTK/GNOME Desktop

      • GTK Impression – Nautilus Breadcrumbs

        Breadcrumbs give location information and links in a backward linear manner; whereas, navigation methods, such as search fields or horizontal/vertical navigation bars, serve to retrieve information for the user in a forward-seeking approach.

      • OMG! Exclusive: Interview with GNOME co-founder Federico Mena

        I am happy that the goal of “make a free desktop” is complete. I am extremely happy that GNOME has created a superb community of hackers and friends; good jobs for people, and tons of technology that people can now take for granted. Remember that back in 1997 we had basically nothing except for the operating system and compiler. You couldn’t browse your files graphically, you couldn’t log in graphically, you couldn’t listen to music, you couldn’t read mail in something that didn’t look like a hacker’s tool.

        What would I like to change? I would like the good hackers to be able to spend less time maintaining the stuff they already wrote – we need to make it easier to pass the baton to other maintainers. I would like GNOME to succeed in going past the traditional “desktop metaphor” – fortunately that is already work in progress.

  • Distributions

    • Linux and Breakfast Cereals

      I got the idea for this post from this article (Caitlyn Martin, O’Reilly Broadcast), which is a response to this op-ed piece (Graham Morrison, TechRadar).
      I find it a little ridiculous that Mr. Morrison can seriously claim to not understand Linux package management after dealing with it for 12 years. But, then again, the article seems to support this as well. Follow the jump to read more about this.

      Let’s start with his analysis of Shotwell vs. F-Spot in Fedora. As Ms. Martin sharply points out, no one is forbidding the use of F-Spot in Fedora — it’s just that now people will have to download F-Spot if they want it (where before, people had to download Shotwell if they wanted it). Furthermore, Mr. Morrison’s assessment of Fedora users’ reaction to the replacement of F-Spot with Shotwell is wholly incorrect; for one, Fedora users are likely more experienced Linux users, so they would know how to get F-Spot if they so chose, and Shotwell is certainly more advanced than Microsoft’s Image and Fax Viewer — it has features like adjusting rotational orientation, red-eye, size, and hue. among others. In addition, as Fedora developer Adam Williamson (who, as I recently found out, commented on my review of Mandriva 2010.1 — yay!) explains, the reason to replace F-Spot with Shotwell was on account of the former’s bloatedness and lack of outstanding features versus Shotwell as opposed to F-Spot using Mono.

    • PCLinuxOS/Mandrake/Mandriva Family

    • Debian Family

      • backports.org moved to backports.debian.org
      • Backports now an official Debian repository

        Every Linux distribution has to strike a balance between being up to date and being stable, between including the latest versions of software packages and retaining better tested, more mature versions. Fedora, for example, is known for having the very latest software, whilst Debian GNU/Linux has a reputation for being a particularly stable distribution, with the software included in each new release already well cured.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu

        • Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter #209

          In this issue we cover:

          * Farewell Ian
          * Ubuntu 10.10 Beta (Maverick Meerkat) Released
          * Xubuntu Winning Artwork
          * New Ubuntu Lucid Proposed Kernel
          * Announcing Ubuntu App Developer Week!
          * Welcome New Members
          * Why do you use Ubuntu?
          * First Kernel Triage Summit
          * Ubuntu in Education
          * Ubuntu Stats
          * LoCo Team Banners for Approved Teams
          * LoCo Testing Team HowTo
          * Ubuntu 10.10 Installfests
          * Ubuntu Global Jam – Another Success Due to LoCo Teams Participation
          * Testing your multitouch device
          * Incredible Stories Of Free Software and Open Source
          * Why I Have Nothing Interesting to Say
          * Understanding Membership Structures in Debian and Ubuntu
          * What I do
          * How My Work Benefits Free Software
          * Multitouch testers in the Hall of Fame
          * Using the Ubuntu Stack Exchange
          * Ubuntu 10.10 Countdown
          * In The Press
          * In The Blogosphere
          * HCI at Canonical
          * Thinking different at Canonical
          * Building Apps for the Cloud: How KnowledgeTree Used Ubuntu for Rapid Development of Its SaaS Offering
          * GUADEC 2010 Videos
          * IBM DB2 on Ubuntu 10.04 LTS
          * Canonical: Take 60 seconds with Henrik Omma
          * Embedded Linux Conference, April 2010 Videos
          * Ohio LinuxFest Proves Real FOSS Diversity
          * Featured Podcasts
          * Monthly Team Reports: August 2010
          * Upcoming Meetings and Events
          * Updates and Security
          * UWN Sneak Peek
          * And Much Much More

        • New Ubuntu font giving Maverick a miss?

          In a recent bug report opened by Alan Bell, he inquires whether the new Ubuntu font, commissioned to be designed specifically for Ubuntu by type foundry Dalton Maag will in fact land in Maverick.

        • When Things Go Well

          The Ubuntu 10.10 wallpaper selection is in the repositories and available for perusal. They are, as of the time of this writing, as follows:

          [...]

          If we ignore the Purple -6 Vomit of Inducing Horror, I would suggest that this is likely the most successful presentation I have seen in Ubuntu proper.

        • Flavours and Variants

          • mFatOS – Ubuntu On Steroids (Remastered Ubuntu)

            mFatOS has a very interesting approach to what a Linux distribution should look like: it comes with Firefox (with Elementary for Firefox by default), Chrome AND Opera 10.70 – all (well, except Opera) with some basic extensions such as AdBlock installed by default -, as well as lots of other applications such as: GIMP with single window mode support, Deadbeef, GnoMenu and Cradapio (so you can choose which one to use), Ubuntu Tweak, Nautilus Elementary, Virtualbox with USB support, Wine & PlayOnLinux, VLC, Avidemux, Audacity, Handbrake, Skype, WinFF, XBMC, Unetbootin, Bleachbit, Goldendict, Pinta, Wally and others as well as most applications which come by default in Ubuntu.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Phones

      • Android

        • Use Your Android Phone to “Jailbreak” Your PlayStation 3

          How cool would it be to jailbreak an iPhone using an Android phone? Alright, I’m already getting off topic, but you can jailbreak your PlayStation 3 using an Android phone. This method follows the news that one hacker was able to find a way to jailbreak (or – with more contextual relevance – mod) your console with nothing but a USB drive. He was selling that solution for $150, but this one is completely free if you already own an Android-based handset.

Free Software/Open Source

  • OpenMEEG: opensource software for quasistatic bioelectromagnetics

    Interpreting and controlling bioelectromagnetic phenomena require realistic physiological models and accurate numerical solvers. A semi-realistic model often used in practise is the piecewise constant conductivity model, for which only the interfaces have to be meshed.

  • Open Innovation Awards 2010: List of Finalists
  • Open source projects under microscope

    The 13 finalists in the Demo Cup, which is organised by the Open World Forum, will be assessed on their viability. The competition is held on 1 October, when each of the finalists has eight minutes to persuade the jury of their project’s worthiness.

    The finalists are ActiveEon; Disruptive Innovations; Conecta Research; Hedera Technology; iceScrum; Jaspersoft; Mozilla; Obeo; Pentaho; O Engine; Pilot Systems; Talend and XWiki.

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

    • GDB 7.2 released!

      Release 7.2 of GDB, the GNU Debugger, is now available via anonymous FTP. GDB is a source-level debugger for Ada, C, C++, Objective-C, Pascal and many other languages. GDB can target (i.e., debug programs running on) more than a dozen different processor architectures, and GDB itself can run on most popular GNU/Linux, Unix and Microsoft Windows variants.

  • Project Releases

  • Government

  • Standards/Consortia

    • Taking Openness to the Next Level

      The people behind the ODAI have come up with some very concrete proposals on how to apply open source’s idea to open standards. Inspired by the Open Source Definition, the group has drawn up the Open Design and Architecture Initiative (ODAI) Definition, with ten parts to it that are almost identical to the OSD. The only one that differs is that “Source Code” is replaced by “Design and Architecture Materials”. This is because the ODAI is dealing with is materials associated with the drawing up of a standard; so although they will be freely available, the final result of the standard – code, for example – may not be.

      Still, it’s a very interesting example of how the ideas behind open source and the Open Source Definition have been transposed into quite a different realm, and at a different level of the conceptual stack. It mirrors closely – and was partly inspired by – the Open Source Hardware Definition that does the same, and about which I wrote recently. That’s important because it indicates that was not just some one-off idea, but part of a larger trend to adapt key aspects of the open source world to other spheres. I’m sure will see other examples in due course.

Leftovers

  • 5 great content discovery sites which aren’t Digg

    Digg isn’t about to shut its doors, but I do get the feeling that regular, loyal Diggers are looking to take their custom elsewhere. Judging by the ‘Reddit incident’ on Monday, where Digg users revolted in favor of Reddit, it looks like a mass exodus might already have begun.

  • Science

  • Security/Aggression

  • Finance

    • Gold & Silver Trading Biggest Scam in History Financial Armageddon Could Result

      Between silver and gold, silver gives the much stronger appearance of giving an investor a more viable short term reward. Since the DOJ and SEC started investigating JP Morgan Chase’s very likely manipulation of silver, you no longer see silver pushed down hard after it has rallied up. In fact an interesting phenomenon has taken place recently regarding silver. Silver and gold used to be joined at the hip in that both would go up and down together as a matter of course. However, silver has continued to go up regardless of when gold goes down. Even more remarkably, silver has recently continued to go up even if the stock market goes down. This shocking behavior of silver only strengthens the case that JP Morgan was manipulating the silver market. That the silver market has such staying power is not really surprising given the big picture of high deficits, a weak dollar, a weak euro. Silver stands out as a relatively safe investment perhaps the safest investment anyone with a some extra money can make. Right now its just under $20 an ounce which is a whole lot more affordable for the average person than gold at around $1250 per ounce.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • ISP Hits Back At U2 Manager’s Billion Dollar Piracy Bonanza Claims

        Last month, outspoken manager of U2 Paul McGuinness penned a piece titled “How to Save The Music Industry”. Among other things, McGuinness suggested that ISPs were unlikely to help the music industry in their battle against illegal file-sharing since they are the ones benefiting from the “multi-billion dollar bonanza” it has generated. UK ISP Entanet are not happy.

      • ACTA

        • ACTA: Please Do What Simon Says…

          I don’t need to add much to that – I’ve already written about the horrors of ACTA ad nauseam (and it is pretty nauseous). The key point is that we are just nine signatures short of getting the necessary majority for the Written Declaration to have real power: please send a message to any of the MEPs listed on Simon’s other blog, who haven’t signed yet, and who could make all the difference…

      • Canada

        • An Explanation Of My Views On Copyright Part One
        • An Explanation Of My Views On Copyright Part Two
        • James Moore gets Cartoond

          Another member of James Moore’s party, Harold Albrecht, has taken to lying about the opposition’s plans for copyright reform. Here is my article. Albrecht is trying to shield Moore’s Bill C-32 which sells out Canada’s current copyright. More sensible alternatives exist than Moore’s bill.

        • ACTA keeps chugging along

          Canada’s Heritage Minister James Moore blocks citizens from following the Twitter feed he uses in his capacity as a federal Cabinet Minister.

          So far there are 60+ citizens who have been blocked. There are probably a great many more because Twitter users are not notified when they have been blocked.

Clip of the Day

Nokia N9 hands on


Credit: TinyOgg

09.06.10

Links 6/9/2010: Debian 5.0.6, Many More Android Tablets

Posted in News Roundup at 6:08 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • How Linux Got To China And The Nordic Open Source Miracle

    China’s and other emerging, or rather growth, countries’ efforts around open source have made a lot of headlines in recent years. But how did, for example, Linux make its way to China? The story that should be told more often is that Helsinki University’s doctoral student Dr. Gong Min upon returning to China in 1996 had 20 diskettes in his luggage containing that moment’s version of Linux. Shortly after that first Linux distro (collection of software) was available in China.

  • Microsoft: Battle the Norm

    But Microsoft windows is normal and using anything else isn’t normal. We have a long way to go before Ubuntu is more recognised as a good technology, well made and not just used by social misfits and people who want to use obscure products to look cool.

    Even if you just think about the technical aspects there is just a barrier from service providers, shops and the media.

    One of the really nice things about Ubuntu is that it’s managed to improve (slightly) this by replacing the Linux brand in a lot of people’s minds1. More people seem to know about Ubuntu and FOSS by extension because of the work we do to be welcoming and accommodating to new users. But are we doing enough? What more could we do to reduce some of the social stigma of using none Microsoft products?

  • The Bizarre Cathedral – 80
  • Desktop

  • Server

    • A Bolder, Brassier VMware Emerges From The Cloud

      Microsoft, Red Hat and Ubuntu are all operating system vendors heavily invested in some other form of virtualization than VMware’s. And they’re all wary of VMware’s widening ambitions and description of a future operating system for the data center, based on its own virtualization layer. Microsoft prefers to talk about Hyper-V and its management component, Virtual Machine Manager in Systems Center. Red Hat is sticking to its open source guns and going with KVM. Ubuntu also packages up KVM and Xen.

    • Zentyal 2.0 – A major new release of the Linux Small Business Server

      The Development Team of Zentyal, the Linux small business server previously known as eBox Platform, announced today the availability of Zentyal 2.0.
      Zentyal 2.0 is a new major release of this server software and it is based on Ubuntu 10.4 LTS distribution.

  • Kernel Space+MINIX

    • Are microkernels the future of secure OS design?

      MINIX 3 itself is still in development, but it is currently a working OS with many of Tanenbaum’s intended reliability assurance features already implemented. You can download it from the MINIX 3 Website and boot it from a LiveCD though, as Tanenbaum states, you should install it to a partition on the hard drive of a computer if you want to do anything useful with it.

    • Graphics Stack

      • Looking At The OpenCL Performance Of ATI & NVIDIA On Linux

        Recently we provided the first Linux-based review of the NVIDIA GeForce GTX 460 graphics card. Overall, this Fermi-based graphics card was a great performer for selling around $200 USD and is complemented by great video playback capabilities with VDPAU acceleration and great proprietary driver support. In that review we primarily looked at the OpenGL performance under Linux, but with NVIDIA’s Fermi architecture bringing great GPGPU advancements for CUDA and OpenCL users too, in this article we are looking more closely at the Open Computing Language performance of this GF104 graphics card as well as other NVIDIA and ATI graphics cards.

  • Applications

  • Distributions

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Phones

      • Nokia/MeeGo

        • New MeeGo User Interface Screens Emerge

          We have been keeping up with the progress of Nokia’s and Intel’s collabortaive mobile operating system, bringing you screenshots of its first stable release to developers.

      • Android

        • Toshiba Folio 100 tablet review: first look

          After traipsing around the semi-completed halls of Berlin’s IFA show, it seems like every manufacturer under the sun has decided to release a tablet. Toshiba is no exception, but its Folio 100 tablet has decided to tread a slightly different path to its rivals. The 10.1in form factor and Android 2.2 OS come as no surprise, but Intel and Qualcomm don’t get a look in – instead Nvidia’s Tegra 2 takes centre stage.

        • ViewSonic ViewPad tablets review: first look

          With many of IFA’s halls still resembling something more akin to a building site than a cutting-edge technology show, we were surprised to find that ViewSonic’s stand was already up and running. And, to a chorus of heart-stopping crashes and bangs from the grumpy Germanic workmen nearby, ViewSonic gave us a hands-on look at its latest 7in and 10in ViewPad Tablets.

        • Samsung Galaxy Tab review: first look

          The Galaxy Tab’s beauty is more than skin-deep, however. Before you even lay a finger on the Samsung-skinned Android 2.2 OS, the 7in TFT display [sadly not AMOLED, as we had hoped] beams forth with rich, saturated colours and wide, wide viewing angles. It’s by far the best we’ve seen at the show, and not least as the 1,024 x 600 resolution keep everything looking pin sharp. It’s simply glorious.

        • Android accounts for one-quarter of mobile web traffic, says Quantcast

          It’s terribly difficult to get reliable statistics, as numbers tend to vary drastically depending upon whom you ask, but if you’re inclined to believe that Android is mopping up Apple and RIM’s declining mobile mindshare in the US, you’ll find nothing but corroboration from Quantcast.

        • New Android 2.2 build leaks out for Nexus One, minor improvements noted

          Well, well — what have we here? Word on the street has it that we’re looking at a new, unreleased (officially, anyway) Froyo build for Google’s now-tough-to-locate Nexus One.

    • Sub-notebooks

    • Tablets

      • Elonex releases tablets in the UK

        Elonex has just revealed a plethora of tablet devices that are touted to go on sale in the UK, where they have been priced at affordable levels. We’re talking about £99 to £159, and at those sticker prices, chances are pretty high that interest will be strong. The eTouch line will start from 5-inches in size, going all the way to 10-inches if you need something larger. Powered by the Google Android operating system, they might come across as cheap substitutes for the Apple iPad, but will utilize a widescreen display instead of the iPad’s 4:3 screen. Each purchase will come with keyboard docks to further enhance their functionality when attached.

Free Software/Open Source

  • SparkleShare Shaping Up to be Slick FOSS Alternative to Dropbox

    If you love Dropbox for easy file sharing across computers but are longing for something free and open source, you’re wish is closer to be granted. The team of developers behind the GNU GPLv3-licensed SparkleShare released a beta version of its new app and it’s shaping up to be pretty slick.

  • Open source Plex media center to run on LG TVs

    Plex source code is hosted on GitHub and is licensed under version 2 of the GNU General Public Licence (GPLv2), apart from the Plex Media Server which is currently closed source and connects to the GPL licensed client over the network.

  • [Free Software Magazine] Newsletter, 3 September 2010
  • Web Browsers

    • Chromium Now Prompts You With a Choice of Search Engines Available

      Chromium and Google Chrome had this feature in a more subtle way before. It never blatantly asked the user to choose the search engine of choice. But interestingly, I didn’t saw this feature in the new Google Chrome 6. So is this a feature only for Chromium? Most probably.

    • Mozilla

      • Start of feature cull for Firefox 4

        Mozilla has confirmed that it has started culling features for version 4.0 of its open source Firefox web browser. According to the Mozilla Platform Meeting Minutes from the 31st of August, the first feature that will be removed is the Account Manager, previously only rated as “at risk”.

  • SaaS

    • Free, as in Fear

      There is a reason there are ~150 people in #openstack on IRC. There is a reason people are submitting patches.

      This isn’t because of Rackspace. This is because of how the community has been engaged and the promise of a truly open cloud framework.

      There are two other things worth noting for people who haven’t followed this story and can’t be bothered to get the facts straight. First, there are other entities involved in OpenStack, not the least of which is NASA. Maybe you have heard of NASA? I don’t think NASA is in this beholden to Rackspace. OpenStack will evolve in the direction that is a combination of the collective utility of the community and whoever chooses to actually contribute code. Which brings me to the second point, code wins. If you think something should work a certain way, prove it with code.

  • CMS

    • Diaspora coming

      It’s probably not true to say that everybody hates Facebook. But there are many millions (of the hundreds of millions that use the site) that claim to hate Facebook’s cavalier approach to privacy and founder Mark Zuckerberg’s equally vague approach to the future of our privacy. There are even groups dedicated to encouraging users to leave Facebook (some on Facebook itself, ironically).

      The alternative to Facebook, some are hoping, is a new, distributed social network that builds in strong privacy controls from the outset. It’s called Diaspora and its makers are a group of university students from the US. The group are now getting ready to launch a developer version later this month and go into public beta in October. But can Diaspora offer what users want or is it too late?

  • Semi-Open Source/Servicing

  • Project Releases

  • Openness/Sharing

    • P2P Hopping Protocol

      A key question is how do your route over a peer-to-peer network a message from one node to another with only the hash of the source and target nodes. None of the nodes have a general routing table or a full view of the network topology. Still, we can route the message from hop-to-hop by, at each hop, reducing the “distance” between the message and its destination. The distance is measured not is physical or network distance, but in the difference between a node identifier and the target of the message. In any case, it works quite well.

  • Programming

    • ActiveState Emphasizes Key Enterprise Programming Issues, Adds Python Modules for GUI Development, Database Connectivity and Cryptography

      ActiveState, the dynamic language experts offering solutions for Perl, Python, and Tcl, is adding key Python open source packages to its ActivePython Business, Enterprise, and OEM Editions specifically to help enterprise developers. Python modules have been added for Graphical User Interface (GUI) development, secure connections with a wider range of proprietary and open source databases and incorporation of core cryptographic capabilities to ensure secure, authenticated connections to databases, servers and web services.

    • Rails 2.3.9 extends bridge to Rails 3

      The release of Rails 2.3.9 by the Ruby on Rails developers will allow Rails coders an easier transition to the recently released Rails 3. The deprecation and renaming of a number of functions now means that, if a Rails application runs on Rail 2.3.9 with no deprecation warnings, then “you’re looking good for an upgrade to Rails 3″ according to the developers.

    • Second alpha for Python 3.2 arrives

      Continuing the efforts to improve and stabilise Python 3.x, the developers have released the second alpha of Python 3.2. Since the moratorium on changing Python 3′s language syntax from last November is still in effect, there are no changes in the language or its built-in types in this release. Alpha 2 builds on August’s initial alpha release which saw improvements in handling the Python Global Interpreter Lock for better multithreading.

Leftovers

  • Pac Rim CAFTA Challenge of Salvadoran Environmental, Mining Safety Policies Given Go-Ahead by Tribunal

    This month, the Obama administration must decide how to proceed with Bush’s leftover Korea-U.S. Free Trade Agreement (FTA), which contains the same CAFTA special rights for foreign investors and private enforcement of them through “investor-state” tribunals. A CAFTA panel for another mining-related investor challenge brought against El Salvador by Milwaukee-based Commerce Group for $100 million was constituted a few weeks ago.

  • Security/Aggression

    • New government ID cards easily hacked

      The sensitive personal information found on the new German identification cards with data chips scheduled for nationwide introduction this November can be easily hacked, according to testing done by a TV news show.

    • Iraq WMD dossier was ‘reviewed’ to match Labour spin, memo reveals
    • Looking for Tony Blair’s memoir? Try the crime section

      But a Facebook page was today inundated with pictures of the former prime minister’s book in odd places after thousands joined a group entitled “Subversively move Tony Blair’s memoirs to the crime section in bookshops”.

    • America’s real school-safety problem

      Last fall, a Delaware student was suspended from school after bringing a knife into his classroom. Because of his school’s zero-tolerance weapons policy, he was suspended for 45 days and forced to attend an alternative school. Swift justice? Perhaps — except that the student, Zachary Christie, was a first grader at the time and the “weapon” was his Cub Scout-issued fork-spoon-knife tool. When his case received national attention, his punishment and the school’s policy were swiftly revised — part of the growing groundswell of opposition to zero tolerance.

    • Airline CEO: Nix co-pilot, save money

      He’s already suggested installing coin-operated lavatories and selling standing room on flights, so it may not be surprising that the latest idea from the colorful CEO of Ryanair is once again pushing air travelers’ buttons.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • A climate warning from the deep

      Bryozoans make unlikely prophets of doom. Nevertheless, scientists believe these tiny marine creatures, which live glued to the side of boulders, rocks and other surfaces, reveal a disturbing aspect about Antarctica that has critical implications for understanding the impact of climate change.

      British Antarctic Survey researchers have found the dispersal of these minute animals suggests a sea passage once divided Antarctica 125,000 years ago. The discovery was made for the ongoing Census of Antarctic Marine Life project and involved comparing bryozoans from the Ross and Weddell seas. These two seas are separated by the west Antarctic ice sheet, one of the planet’s largest masses of ice. Bryozoans found in the Ross and Weddell seas should have been fairly different in structure if the sheet had been stable and ancient. The two populations would have slowly evolved in different manners, if the sheet was millions of years old.

  • Finance

  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

    • Flash Player as a spy system

      If a forged certificate is accepted when accessing the Flash Player’s Settings Manager, which is available exclusively online, attackers can potentially manipulate the player’s website privacy settings. This allows a web page to access a computer’s web cams and microphones and remotely turn the computer into a covert listening device or surveillance camera.

    • Phone-hacking inquiry was abandoned to avoid upsetting police

      The Home Office abandoned plans to establish an independent inquiry into the News of the World phone-hacking scandal last year after a senior official warned that the Metropolitan police would “deeply resent” any interference in their investigation, according to a leaked government document.

      As Alan Johnson came close today to accusing Scotland Yard of having misled him over the scandal, a leaked Home Office memo shows that the last government decided against calling in Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary after intense internal lobbying.

      Stephen Rimmer, the Home Office director general for crime and policing, warned that Scotland Yard would “deeply resent” a review of its investigation by the inspectorate and that it would send a message that “we do not have full confidence” in the Met.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • Sending letters to your MP.

        One of the features of this site is an interface to send a letter to your MP. We are in the process of drafting a new letter which focuses on Bill C-32 and TPMs. There is an existing general copyright letter which I’ve updated that may be more what you would like to send.

      • The Economist:: the World Wide Web is fracturing

        In the end, the bleak look is softened by The Economist’s usual on-the-one-hand-and-on-the-other outlook such as, ‘Yet predictions are hazardous, particularly in IT.” I wouldn’t hold my breath unless the consumer is heard and is listened to.

      • ACTA

        • Written Declaration 12/2010 signatories list
        • ACTA: TELL YOUR MEP TO SIGN WRITTEN DECLATION 12
        • Is Your MEP Aware Of ACTA?

          Right now, a new trade agreement is being secretly negotiated that could impose on European businesses draconian rules that could result in new forms of legal action. The Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) goes far, far beyond the scope of its name and in fact attempts to “harmonise” (read: impose the worst parts of each region’s policy) the treatment of copyrights, trademarks and patents internationally. It is attempting to achieve by secret treaty what democratically-elected governments globally have declined to do.

        • URGENT: Has Your MEP Signed The ACTA Written Declaration?

          The following had NOT signed at 11pm UK time on Monday:

          * William (The Earl of) DARTMOUTH
          * John Stuart AGNEW
          * Marta ANDREASEN
          * Richard ASHWORTH
          * Gerard BATTEN
          * Godfrey BLOOM
          * Sharon BOWLES
          * Philip BRADBOURN
          * John BUFTON
          * Martin CALLANAN
          * David CAMPBELL BANNERMAN
          * Michael CASHMAN
          * Giles CHICHESTER
          * Derek Roland CLARK
          * Trevor COLMAN
          * Nirj DEVA
          * Diane DODDS
          * James ELLES
          * Nigel FARAGE
          * Vicky FORD
          * Ashley FOX
          * Julie GIRLING
          * Daniel HANNAN
          * Mary HONEYBALL
          * Richard HOWITT
          * Stephen HUGHES
          * Syed KAMALL
          * Sajjad KARIM
          * Timothy KIRKHOPE
          * Elizabeth LYNNE
          * David MARTIN
          * Linda McAVAN
          * Arlene McCARTHY
          * Emma McCLARKIN
          * Claude MORAES
          * Mike NATTRASS
          * James NICHOLSON
          * Paul NUTTALL
          * Brian SIMPSON
          * Peter SKINNER
          * Struan STEVENSON
          * Catherine STIHLER
          * Kay SWINBURNE
          * Charles TANNOCK
          * Geoffrey VAN ORDEN
          * Derek VAUGHAN
          * Glenis WILLMOTT
          * Marina YANNAKOUDAKIS

Clip of the Day

Puppy Linux Lucid Puppy 5.11 Install Tutorial & Screencast Review


Credit: TinyOgg

Links 6/9/2010: AUSTRUMI Reviewed, Linux Mint 9 Fluxbox Released

Posted in News Roundup at 11:27 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • The Many Faces of Linux

    When talking about Linux, it helps to distinguish what kind of Linux you are referring to. The core Linux kernel is amazingly capable and flexible, and has made its way into as many devices as there are CPUs to power them. It’s important to take note that Linux on the server is a world of difference away from Linux on the desktop, in both purpose, use, and functionality.

  • Desktop

    • Myth: Linux only has 1% market share

      What this means is that at this point in time, the statistics that have been made available regarding the market share that Linux currently holds cannot possibly be accurate. You cannot measure how many users have wiped their Windows systems off their computers to install Linux. You cannot know how many individuals have began using Linux as a result of a friend giving them a disk or coming to their home and installing Linux, which by the way is how I first got introduced to Linux, when a friend gave me a disk and helped me to install Linux.

      What the statistics do tell us is that a 1% market share margin for Linux can be confirmed. The numbers cannot account for all the undocumented installs and uses of Linux. Also the numbers do not account for all the computers that came pre-installed with Windows and were later formated and replaced with Linux.

    • A prickly questionnaire

      One thing is sure: when my Linux computer finally stops working, at least I will know that my OS did everything possible to keep it alive. Windows, on the other hand, just tells you that your computer is not “good enough” to run the OS. But I learned that, for Microsoft, no currently available computer is good enough to run the latest version of Windows anyway. Mark my words: your nice computer running 7 today will be “obsolete” by the time Microsoft releases Windows 8. However, we know that, although some of the hardware might have become “older”, what is actually obsolete for the Redmond software company is their OS, not the computer itself. And they have no regrets about spending any amount of money to fool you into believing that your hardware is to be blamed!

    • Screenshots from 120Mhz

      I have a few moments this morning, and I’ve been stacking up screenshots just for kicks. Here are a few from the slowest machine in the house — a 120Mhz Pentium Classic running Crux Linux on 80Mb at 800×600.

  • Audiocasts/Shows

  • Kernel Space

    • Graphics Stack

      • Happy 3rd Birthday To AMD’s Open-Source Strategy

        It was three years ago on this day that we were the first to detail AMD’s open-source strategy. Yep, it’s only been three years since AMD became public with pushing out NDA-free GPU documentation and register specifications, open-source code for the xf86-video-ati and Mesa drivers, and employed a small set of developers to contribute towards their open-source Linux stack. It was also three years ago from this month that the now deceased RadeonHD driver was launched.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • Add desktop icons to KDE and GNOME

      Although I am one to prefer a clutter-free, minimalist desktop, I know the majority of users prefer a much more standard, fast-access type of desktop. This means icons. Not the kind of icons you see on many users desktops (you know the ones, where there are so many icons it’s impossible to make sense of what is there), but icons that allow you to launch the applications you use most often.

      With KDE and GNOME there are different ways to add icons. With one desktop, the process is very obvious. With the others? Not so much. In this article I am going to show you the process for adding desktop icons (aka launchers) to two of the most popular Linux desktops: KDE and GNOME.

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC)

    • GNOME Desktop

      • GNOME Activity Journal gets major performance improvements

        First Siegfried managed to fix the startup time by creating an extension for Zeitgeist that populates the histogram in the bottom. Querying events for 90 in days in one query per day makes itself noticeable, so his approach of a dedicated API from zeitgeist was the best solution. However it did not improve the navigation time.

  • Distributions

    • Reviews

      • Peering timidly at AUSTRUMI (2.1.6)

        Unfortunately, the GUI and speed aren’t enough to make me recommend this distro, at least not for regular use. The auto-login problem and unusual installer lead me to believe this isn’t so much a distribution for day-to-day work as it is a strong demo. It can show people unfamiliar with open source how fast and flexible Linux can be. That in itself, I feel, is enough to suggest a look at this distribution.

      • Lightweight Distro Roundup: Day 11 – PCLinuxOS LXDE

        After a lazy weekend where I tended to my aquariums and spent time with the kids I really enjoyed taking some time with Elzje and PCLOS LXDE.

        The fact that it was so surprisingly likeable rounds off this series nicely for me. It is good to end a project like this on a high note, and PCLOS LXDE did that.

      • Lightweight Distro Roundup – The verdict

        We have taken much longer than the original envisioned seven days. In this entry we decide on the best distro in each of the following categories: Grandma Distro, Elzje’s Favorite, Quintins Favorite, Best Utility Distro/Best USB Boot Disk, Best Ultra lightweight Distro.

    • Red Hat Family

    • Debian Family

Free Software/Open Source

  • Teaching Blender at India School for 4-8th grade

    Uriel Deveaud posted this story on BlenderArtists, it’s telling his experience of teaching Blender & Gimp to 4-8th grade kids from the villages in India.

  • Web Browsers

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

    • Eben Moglen on the Commons of the digital economy

      To orchestrate change you need someone who can balance vision with pragmatism. In Eben Moglen the proponents choreographing the software patents debate have such a leader. A keynote speaker at the recent seminar on “Software Patents and the Commons” in New Delhi, India, Moglen, the chairman of the Software Freedom Law Center, looked at the patents issue engulfing the free software world from a different perspective.

      Side stepping software patents, Moglen instead talked about the rise of Commons (umbrella term for all resources that are collectively owned) in the new digital economy, and the impending death of ownership.

  • Project Releases

  • Openness/Sharing

    • Bringing open government to courts

      We worked with the Internet Archive and with Carl Malamud at public.resource.org. We built a system where users could download the RECAP plug-in and install it. While they used PACER, any time they purchased a docket or a PDF, whether it was a brief, an opinion or any motion, it automatically gets uploaded into our central repository in the background.

      The quid pro quo in that, as you’re using the RECAP plug-in, if we already have a document that has been uploaded by another user, that gets shown to you in PACER to say, “Hey, we already have a copy. Instead of purchasing another copy for $.08 or whatever it’ll cost you, just get it from us for free.”

      We now have about 2.2 million PACER documents in our system, which is actually a small fraction of the total number of documents in the PACER system. The PACER administrative office claims that there are about 500 million documents in PACER, with 5 million being added every month. So 2.2 million is actually a pretty small number of documents, by percentage.

Leftovers

  • Journo Writes 1,000+ Word Story on Twitter After Media Missed Major Breaking News

    There were no reporters present in Laurel, Miss. when a jury handed down a $131 million verdict against Ford after an Explorer rolled over, killing a young man who was on track to play baseball for the New York Mets. Hours after the verdict, there was no coverage of a case that involved a high profile victim, a major corporation, and the possibility that more than four million Ford Explorers are dangerously unstable.

    Adam Penenberg heard about the verdict immediately from the defense lawyer. Hours later, he was amazed to see there had been no major media coverage at all. So he turned to Twitter.

  • 4chan Decides to Do Something Nice For a Change

    From 4chan — which has given birth to most of the Internet “memes” that many users are likely familiar with, including LOLcats and the RickRoll — the idea spread to other social networking sites such as Reddit, as well as Tumblr and even Facebook. A recent check showed that the account someone set up for Mr. Lashua’s birthday had 3,956 “likes” and over 500 comments, most of which were wishing him a happy birthday and thanking him for his military service. Someone on Reddit noted that in contrast to their usual behavior, 4chan members “were giving him nice phone calls and sending him nice notes” and discouraging those who wanted to do something stupid or mean. “They were all being.. well, shucks… awful nice.”

  • Science

    • Transition metal catalysts could be key to origin of life, scientists report

      One of the big, unsolved problems in explaining how life arose on Earth is a chicken-and-egg paradox: How could the basic biochemicals—such as amino acids and nucleotides—have arisen before the biological catalysts (proteins or ribozymes) existed to carry out their formation?

      In a paper appearing in the current issue of The Biological Bulletin, scientists propose that a third type of catalyst could have jumpstarted metabolism and life itself, deep in hydrothermal ocean vents.

    • Ye cannae change the laws of physics
  • Security/Aggression

    • End of combat yields surge of contractors

      EVEN AS President Obama claimed this week that the end of combat operations in Iraq “completes’’ a transition in which Iraqis have taken responsibility for their own security, he knows that the US pullout is not as thorough as he let on. The American presence takes the form not just of uniformed personnel — tens of thousands of whom will remain — but also of largely unaccountable private security contractors, whose numbers are likely to grow.

      The number of US troops in Iraq peaked at 169,000 in 2007, and by following through on a planned withdrawal Obama has at least signficantly lowered America’s official exposure. This is no small step in a war that President Bush began under false pretenses and that has cost the lives of more than 4,400 American soldiers, 10,000 members of Iraq’s security forces, and at least 100,000 Iraqi civilians.

    • Tony Blair pelted with eggs and shoes at book signing
    • Four police officers chase down WWII veteran for cycling on pavement

      An 84 year-old WWII veteran was riding his bike along the pavement in Sale, Greater Manchester when two Police Community Support Officers spotted him and promptly chased after him.

    • Stolen and sold: Private details of thousands of World Cup fans

      The personal details of thousands of football fans who bought World Cup tickets from official FIFA outlets have been stolen and sold for up to £500,000.

      Investigators are now trying to establish who purchased the information, which includes the passport details and dates of birth of up to 250,000 supporters, amid concerns it could have fallen into the hands of criminal gangs or even terrorist groups.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • Greenpeace ‘Tokyo Two’ anti-whaling activists found guilty

      Two anti-whaling activists were today found guilty of theft and trespass while attempting to expose embezzlement in Japan’s heavily subsidised whaling industry.

      Greenpeace members Junichi Sato and Toru Suzuki were each sentenced to one year in prison, suspended for three years. Prosecutors had sought 18-month terms for the “Tokyo Two”.

  • Finance

    • Welcome Mr. President, but Laverne and Shirley Don’t Work Here Anymore

      Two years after the financial crisis began, foreclosures and personal bankruptcies are on an uptick. Milwaukee is seeing a steady rate of about 500 foreclosures a month, while in Wisconsin as a whole, August filings jumped 14% from this time last year. These are not families taking a loss on pricey investment homes; these are families that are being forced out of their modest homes and communities in a daily tragedy that is spreading well into the middleclass outer-ring suburbs.

    • Retiring Fed Official Considers More Bank Action

      The former vice chairman of the Federal Reserve, who retired last week after 40 years at the central bank, says that the economy is in “a slow slog out of a very deep hole,” and that the Fed should consider additional stimulus unless the recovery shows signs of “decent progress.”

    • WTO chief wants G20 push on global trade deal

      Group of 20 leaders should use their November summit to make a serious push for the conclusion of stalled global trade negotiations, the head of the WTO said Monday.

      World Trade Organization talks aimed at a new global commerce pact – the so-called Doha round named after Qatar’s capital where the negotiations were launched in 2001 – have been unable to secure a final deal amid disagreement between developed and emerging economies over trade rules applying to agricultural and industrial goods.

    • Obama to call for $100 billion business tax credit

      Under mounting pressure to intensify his focus on the economy ahead of the midterm elections, President Obama will call for a $100 billion business tax credit this week, using a speech in Cleveland on Wednesday to launch what administration officials said was a new policy push.

    • China vows to boost imports, help world recovery

      A Chinese official defended the country’s trade record Monday as a top economic adviser to President Barack Obama visited Beijing amid renewed pressure by American lawmakers over Chinese currency controls.

      China’s deputy trade envoy, Chong Quan, rejected complaints that Beijing intentionally boosts its trade surplus by promoting exports while holding down imports. Speaking at a trade forum, Chong repeated promises to boost imports of resources and high-tech equipment and to ease costs for importers but announced no new initiatives.

    • Future hiring will mainly benefit the high-skilled

      Whenever companies start hiring freely again, job-seekers with specialized skills and education will have plenty of good opportunities. Others will face a choice: Take a job with low pay – or none at all.

    • Official: Obama backing research tax credits

      Seeking ways to spur economic growth ahead of the November elections, President Barack Obama will ask Congress to increase and permanently extend research and development tax credits for businesses, a White House official said Sunday.

      Obama will outline the $100 billion proposal during a speech on the economy Wednesday in Cleveland, the official said. The announcement is expected to be the first in a series of new measures Obama will propose this fall as the administration looks to jump-start an economy that the president himself has said isn’t growing fast enough.

    • Making Social Security less generous isn’t the answer

      There are a lot of things Congress doesn’t know right now. What to do about jobs, for instance. Who’ll be running the House come January. How to balance the budget. But there is one thing that both parties increasingly seem to agree on: You should work longer.

    • Dems’ prospects threatened by economic woes

      Republicans are hoping to capitalize on voters’ economic disillusionment, frustration with Obama and tea party-generated enthusiasm.

      Democrats are relying on a financial advantage, a robust get-out-the-vote operation and, mostly, the ghost of George W. Bush to curb an expected Nov. 2 shellacking.

    • World markets rise as double-dip fears ease

      World stock markets advanced modestly Monday as investors rode momentum from Friday, when an upbeat U.S. jobs report eased fears that the global economy could slip back into recession.

      With Wall Street closed for a holiday, however, trading was expected to remain light.

    • Blind Item: Which Goldman Sachs VP Is About to Be Thoroughly Humiliated by His Colleagues?

      The one described in the following reality-TV-show pitch sent to Gawker, about a “female player” who is dating four guys at once, including a Maserati-owning “34 year old Asian American VP at Goldman Sachs,” who is probably going to be identified and Atomic- wedgied by his colleagues … oh, right around now.

    • Why Are Goldman’s Women Invisible? (Asks A Former Goldman Sachs Partner)

      Please, before you even consider getting your fingers all warmed up and to send a response saying, “Who the heck cares about anyone at Goldman Sachs at the moment? I lost half the value of my retirement fund and they are all the cause of it,” hear TWO points.

      First, the point of this piece is NOT to seek acknowledgment for these women, but for women in general. Bloomberg Markets took the time to write a COVER article on Goldman Alumni and did not do their homework. The media in general, and this article in particular, had the opportunity to make women leaders VISIBLE and they chose not to. Worse yet it was written by two women who one might think would be sensitive to the lack of women’s faces in articles such as these. I am taking the time by writing this to hold them accountable and to tell them they let us down.

    • Wall Street Roundup: Lingering Lehman lessons. Cramer turns on Goldman.

      Lingering Lehman lessons. Dick Fuld, former chief executive of the bankrupt investment bank Lehman Brothers, testified Wednesday morning that the government wrongly discriminated against his firm in forcing it to go bankrupt. Meanwhile, Lehman’s estate is investigating hedge fund operators that it suspects of encouraging Lehman’s demise.

    • Lawyers for Lehman Are Seeking Records From Hedge Funds and Goldman

      Nearly two years after the collapse of Lehman Brothers, some on Wall Street still wonder whether a handful of the nation’s most powerful hedge funds conspired to push the 158-year-old financial giant into bankruptcy while making big profits for themselves.

      Now, in search of a smoking gun, a law firm hired by the estate of Lehman Brothers Holdings has demanded trading records, e-mail and other correspondence for all of 2008 from a collection of prominent hedge funds and the venerable Goldman Sachs.

    • Goldman Sachs Spends $1.58M on Lobbying in 2nd Qtr

      Goldman Sachs Group Inc. spend $1.58 million in the second quarter to lobby the federal government on issues related to the financial regulatory overhaul that President Obama signed in July.

    • Huge Lobbying Bill For Goldman Sachs Group (NYSE:GS)

      The amount is more than double the company spent during the same quarter last year, $630,000.

    • Jim Cramer Bailing On Goldman Sachs; Says Brand Is Tarnished (GS)

      Jim Cramer posted an article on RealMoney, which is a part of theStreet.com (NASDAQ: TSCM), this afternoon entitled “Goldman’s Looking Tarnished.” This seems important. First, Cramer has previously been a believer in the stock and is also a former employee of Goldman Sachs (NYSE: GS). It was Goldman who gave Cramer his shot on Wall Street, and where he says he “learned the ropes” of the securities business. Now he is bailing on the firm.

    • Axa holdings in Goldman Sachs halved during last quarter

      Axa, the French insurance and wealth management group, more than halved its stake in Goldman Sachs during the last quarter.

    • Wall Street Roundup: Early bonuses, getting rid of Goldman Sachs

      Getting rid of Goldman. What had been Goldman Sachs’ biggest shareholder, the French insurer AXA, dumped half of its shares as the Wall Street firm dealt with a government lawsuit and public scrutiny.

    • Goldman shutting principal strategies unit: report
    • Goldman shutting prop trading desk: report

      Goldman Sachs Group Inc is closing its principal strategies desk as U.S. regulators try to limit trading risk that major banks take with their money, Bloomberg News reported on Friday.

    • Hard Times for Wall Street’s “Sell Night” Recruits

      In the post-TARP era, “sell night,” the Street’s annual August ritual of hosting steak dinners and strip-club expeditions, is over

    • What’s it really like working as a top quant at Goldman Sachs?

      Antonio Garcia-Martinez was a PhD physics student at Berkeley when Goldman Sachs (NYSE: GS) got its hooks in him. He ended up signing on as a pricing quant on Goldman’s credit and equity trading floors, modeling credit-default swaps and other various weapons of financial destruction (I’m kidding). He left after a few years and now is trying to get a startup running. Fortunately for us, he’s written an eye-opening post about what’s it’s really like to work as a quant–burger eating contests and all–at Goldman Sachs.

      Some excerpts:

      “Giving sophisticated models and fast computers to traders is like giving handguns and tequila to teenage boys. Only complete mayhem can result (and as we saw recently, complete mayhem did result).”

    • Think Tank: Is Goldman Sachs trying to destroy China?
    • Goldman Sachs invests to get its image right in China

      Outwardly Goldman Sachs might like to portray an image of nonchalance and disdain for the world at large. But inwardly, it is just as concerned with how it is viewed as the rest of us.

    • Arthur Levitt, Policy Advisor, Goldman Sachs
    • Goldman Sachs Documents Subpoenaed by U.S. Financial-Crisis Investigators

      The U.S. panel investigating the causes of the financial crisis issued a subpoena to Goldman Sachs Group Inc. after the Wall Street firm failed to hand over documents in a “timely manner.” The Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission “has made it clear that it is committed to using its subpoena power” if firms under review don’t comply with information requests, the panel said in a statement today.

    • Another Reason to Break up Big Wall Street Banks

      The new Wall Street reform has gone a long way to prevent the kind of recklessness and financial sector meltdown that collapsed the economy and cost eight million Americans their jobs. Democrats passed that bill over virtually unanimous Republican opposition, on the strength of massive public support. There is plenty of political support among the voters to take the next step and break up the monopoly power of the big Wall Street Banks.

      After all, the only way to completely guarantee that no financial institution is ever again “too big to fail” is to invoke the yardstick that if it’s too big to fail, it’s simply too big.

      For a long time a group of sharp guys and gals on Wall Street have run one hell of a game on everyday Americans. We’ve been played for chumps. Isn’t it time for us to wake up and end a system where a few Wall Street Bankers have a license to siphon money out of the pockets of the middle class?

    • Afghan officials resist clean-up of Kabul Bank as scandal engulfs elite

      Officials in Afghanistan are resisting US pressure for a wide-ranging clean-up of Kabul Bank, which is mired in allegations of corruption that have engulfed some of the wealthiest and most powerful people in the country.

    • Have a bribe
    • The Best Of The Worst Jokes About Goldman Sachs

      Many of the jokes at Wall Street’s expense this past year have been aimed directly at Goldman Sachs.

      They’ve been delightful, but we think the bubble has burst.

    • Banking on a Lighter Note

      Wouldn’t you like to be a fly on the wall when she meets with Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein: “so Lloyd, are you still selling securities that are designed to fail?” Or with Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf: “have you stopped juggling customer late fees to maximize the pain for consumers?” These are just some of the big bank tricks featured in our last column.

  • PR

    • Keeping up appearances

      Everyone likes to imagine they are rational, fair, and free from prejudice. But how easily are we misled by appearances? Noola Griffiths studies the psychology of music, and she’s published a cracking paper on how what women wear affects your judgment of their performance. The results are predictable but the context is interesting.

    • Which Millionaire Fat Cats Are Backing the American Action Network’s Ads Attacking Sen. Feingold?

      A new right-wing group, “American Action Network,” has entered the 2010 election with ads attacking Senator Russell Feingold of Wisconsin. The American Action Network (AAN) was created by right-wing politicians and their funders around the time the Supreme Court issued the Citizens United decision that expanded corporate rights to spend more money than ever influencing elections. AAN does not disclose its funding sources for the $25 million it plans to spend this fall, but its board is filled with politicians and millionaire businessmen on the right.

    • Lauria Quit Cigarettes, But Now He’s on the Bottle

      Old tobacco industry PR flacks don’t go away, they just defend different products for money. So it is for former Tobacco Institute spokesman Thomas Lauria, who is now defending bottled water.

      Seems benign enough. After all, fighting for water — even in an over-commercialized, overpriced and polluting form — instead of cigarettes would seem to be an improvement for Lauria. But just as he battled efforts to educate people about the health hazards of secondhand smoke, Lauria is now battling efforts to educate people about the hoax that is bottled water.

  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

    • Regulating sex and speech

      These days, Craig and the company he founded are being demonized in courts of political and media power as sex peddlers. The service — which Craig is quick to point out, he does not run; he means it when he says he is its customer-service representative — just took down its adult ads in the U.S., replacing the link with the word “censored.”

      The argument has been that craigslist ads are used to serve human sex trafficking. Except craigslist has been openly and consistently helping police in their efforts to arrest traffickers. The adult ads were paid and more trackable than free personals on craigslist or ads in many other places online and in print. Now the trade, whatever its scale, is only more distributed. Gawker has a guide to post-craigslist paid sex and craigslist has pointed out that even eBay has sold party favors of another sort.

    • Efforts Afoot to Oust Assange as WikiLeaks Leader

      Two people familiar with the site’s internal politics, who asked for anonymity to discuss them, say that moves are already afoot to restrict Assange’s role. One of them says some activists, concerned that Assange had misused WikiLeaks’ Twitter feed to suggest the Swedish investigation was the product of “dirty tricks,” are discussing whether to limit his access to the service. Since the sex probe was originally opened on Aug. 20, the Web site has been down for “scheduled maintenance” on multiple occasions.

    • Fidel Castro, Internet junkie

      Fidel Castro is back from the dead (his words) and has been reincarnated as an Internet junkie. Not only is he a prolific blogger on Cuba’s online Granma newspaper but, it turns out, the 84-year-old greybeard consumes 200 to 300 news items a day on the Web and is fascinated by the WikiLeaks site, with its trove of 90,000 formerly secret U.S. documents on military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    • Met Police to re-examine News of the World hacking case

      The Metropolitan Police is to examine new evidence about the extent of phone hacking involving journalists on the News of the World.

      Assistant Commissioner John Yates told the BBC new information had emerged that would be considered by the police.

      Former reporter Sean Hoare has claimed the paper’s former editor, Andy Coulson, asked him to hack into phones.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • Nevada GOP candidate faces copyright lawsuit

        A company has sued Republican U.S. Senate candidate Sharron Angle, claiming she reprinted two Las Vegas Review-Journal articles on her campaign website without permission.

      • ACTA

        • August 25 Washington DC ACTA Text

          The negotiating text emerging from 10th round ACTA negotiations in Washington DC (August 16-20, 2010) was not shared with the public because the United States successfully opposed its release. The US was the only negotiating party to have taken this position on transparency.

        • EU wants punitive measures against patent infringements in ACTA

          Knowledge Ecology International has posted the latest leaked version of the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) text, the Washington DC August 2010 text. The following statement can be attributed to the Foundation for a Free Information Infrastructure (FFII):

          “We are disappointed the EU still wants punitive measures against patent infringements in ACTA. The FFII analysis shows punitive measures do not work in fields where infringement is often unavoidable.

          The software field is plagued by patents. Holders of huge patent portfolios may decide to eliminate competition from startups, small and medium sized enterprises and open source projects, on their own, or by using a proxy, a patent troll. Patent trolls acquire excessive power. This is bad for the European small and medium sized enterprises, which provide for most of Europe’s employment.

        • ACTA Text Leaks: U.S. Concedes on Secondary Liability, Wants To Go Beyond DMCA on Digital Locks

          Perhaps the most important story of the latest draft is how the countries are close to agreement on the Internet enforcement chapter. The Internet enforcement chapter has been among the most contentious since the U.S. first proposed draft language that would have globalized the DMCA and raised the prospect of three strikes and you’re out. In the face of opposition, the U.S. has dropped its demands on secondary liability but is still holding out hope of establishing digital lock rules that go beyond the WIPO Internet treaties and were even rejected by its own courts.

        • ACTA – Washington DC aug 25
      • Digital Economy (UK)

        • UK music calls for truce with technology

          The music industry scored a controversial success in April when the last government passed the Digital Economy Act, which would sanction the removal of people’s internet connections if they were suspected of sharing copyrighted music online.

Clip of the Day

Blender Tutorial Bridge Building Lesson 1


Credit: TinyOgg

09.05.10

Links 5/9/2010: KDE SC 4.5 Coverage, Systemd in Fedora 14, Debian 7.0 Named

Posted in News Roundup at 5:44 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • GNU/Linux powers state-of-the-art hearing aid research

    The next generation of digital hearing aids is being developed and tested on real-time GNU/Linux systems from 64 Studio Ltd, using dedicated multi-channel audio interfaces and standard Lenovo notebooks.

  • Desktop

    • Web Stats from Wikipedia

      rom billions of hits, 1.88% are from GNU/Linux. I think this lays to rest any idea that GNU/Linux on desktops is less than 1% share of OS. Further, Wikipedia is mostly in English so this sample represents mostly the English-speaking world, UK, Australia, Canada, USA, and segments of other countries where English is a language of tech/science/business.

  • Server

    • Maturing as a Linux Systems Administrator

      Finally, one of the greatest signs of a mature systems administrator, no matter what platform he specializes in, is patience. Admittedly, this is an area I’m still working on, and probably will be for the rest of my life. It takes patience to write good documentation, it takes patience to throughly test a system before it’s put into production, it takes patience to ensure systems are patched on time, and that the patches are tested before they are put into production. It takes patience to know that the cool new thing might not be whats best for your environment. It takes patience to recognize that voice in the back of your head that says something that you are looking at is not quite right. And, it takes patience to smile and nod to vendors who speak condescendingly about your profession.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC)

      • Open-Source GPU Drivers Causing Headaches In KDE 4.5

        Martin Gräßlin, the KDE developer known for working on KWin and working on advanced features like OpenGL 3.x compositing in KDE 4.7, has written a new blog post in which he details some of the driver issues currently being experienced by some users of the recently released KDE 4.5 desktop.

        With the KWin desktop effects in KDE SC 4.5 they are beginning to use the GL Shading Language. Initially this GLSL usage is limited to KWin’s blur effect and lanczos filter, but stressing the GLSL code paths is exposing some Linux graphics card driver bugs, primarily with the open-source hardware drivers.

      • KDE SC 4.5 – Desktop Activities Exposed

        Whilst I now understand how these features work and might be used, I still don’t understand how this might improve my workflow. It may be that because I’ve never been a big fan of desktop widgets – despite the fact that I developed one of the most popular superkaramba themes ever – liquidweather ;-) I understand that, in addition to being able to put different wallpapers and plasmoids on different activities, you can specify the activity on which each application opens. This could be a useful way to organise yourself, but it has always been possible to specify which virtual desktop a particular application opens on. Activities to me seem to be simply an extension of the virtual desktop metaphor.

      • Driver dilemma in KDE workspaces 4.5

        KDE is currently blamed for errors in external components: the graphic drivers. I am lately reading quite some crap (e.g. on it news today) that we KWin devs knew about problems in the drivers and shipped 4.5 nevertheless with changes enabled which trigger the driver bugs. That is of course not true.

    • GTK/GNOME Desktop

      • GTK Impression – Scrollbars

        The Impression themes sought the middle ground by creating a stepper “prelight” event. As demonstrated in the two screen shots above, the steppers are hidden unless the mouse hovers above the area before or after the trough. A very muted stepper is shown when the bar has landed at the beginning or end of the trough to provide visual feed back to this event.

  • Distributions

    • Are You Intimidated By Breakfast Cereal?

      An article by Graham Morrison for Tech Radar UK this past week struck a bit of a raw nerve for me. It was one of a type we see periodically in the tech press and the title pretty much tells the story: 
      The trouble with Linux: there’s too much choice. To Mr. Morrison and all the others who have written articles like this one I say: Hogwash!

      I pose the following questions to Mr. Morrison and to all the others who share his views. Are you intimidated by the breakfast cereal isle in his supermarket? After all, there are so many choices. Isn’t it confusing? Should we all just eat corn flakes? Would you like to go back to the days when Henry Ford famously said, “Any customer can have a car painted any colour that he wants so long as it is black”? After all, wouldn’t buying a car be easier if there were fewer makes, models and colors available? How about clothing? Wouldn’t life be simpler if we all had to wear the same uniform?

    • WTF is Unity Linux? A self faq-interview thing

      So it occurs to me that I’ve never really sat down and talked about Unity Linux. I’ve engaged in bunches of discussions and have even popped in on some early forum posts when Unity Linux was just conceived, so that I could correct things. But I haven’t really participated in any of that (even before my recent break).

      Part of the reasoning was that I was expecting a manifesto or at least a good official description to be crafted which goes over anything I would want to say. The rest of the reasoning was that I figured the magazine would sprout up and I’d be able to do interviews or articles within it which would clarify anything not covered by the official stuff.

    • PCLinuxOS/Mandrake/Mandriva Family

      • September 2010 Issue of The PCLinuxOS Magazine

        In the September 2010 issue:

        LXDE: An Overview
        LXDE: The Control Center
        LXDE: Autostart Apps With .desktop Files
        Installing PCLinuxOS-LXDE On An IBM Thinkpad 600e
        Does Linux Market Share Matter? What Matters?
        OpenOffice 3.2, Part 4: Impress
        Command Line Interface Intro: Part 12
        Ms_Meme’s Nook: Download The Distro
        Forum Foibles: User Names
        Computer Languages A to Z: Octave
        Alternate OS: Syllable, Part 1
        Ladies Of PCLinuxOS: Meemaw
        Educational Linux!
        Game Zone: Battle For Wesnoth
        Repo Spotlight: Repository Speed Test
        and much, much more!

      • I’ve Moved On …

        Mandriva is by no means the best distro out there, but to me, it meets my needs, at least for now

    • Red Hat Family

      • Piper Jaffray: More Clients Using Red Hat Than Microsoft’s Windows

        Shares of Red Hat gained $1.10, good for a gain of 3.18%, to close at $35.65.

      • Red Hat Sets Its Cloud Strategy, Eyes Microsoft Azure Alternative
      • Fedora

        • Systemd and Fedora 14

          Systemd, an alternative to Upstart or System V init, has made big strides since it was announced at the end of April. It has been packaged for Fedora and openSUSE, and for users of Fedora Rawhide, it gets installed as the default. There are still bugs to be shaken out, of course, and that work is proceeding, especially in the context of Rawhide. The big question is whether Fedora makes the leap to use systemd as the init system for Fedora 14.

          When last we looked in on systemd, Lennart Poettering intended to have a package ready for Fedora 14, which has happened, but it was unclear what, exactly, openSUSE’s plans were. Since then, Kay Sievers, who worked with Poettering on developing systemd, has created an openSUSE Factory—essentially the equivalent of Fedora’s Rawhide—package along with web page of instructions for interested users. But most of the action seems to be going on in Fedora-land.

    • Debian Family

      • Some notes on Flash in Debian and Debian Edu
      • Debian GNU/Linux 5.0 updated

        The Debian project is pleased to announce the sixth update of its stable distribution Debian GNU/Linux 5.0 (codename “lenny”). This update mainly adds corrections for security problems to the stable release, along with a few adjustment to serious problems.

      • Debian 7.0 named

        As the Debian developers work on completing development of the free software Debian GNU/Linux 6.0, known as “Squeeze”, they have also been selecting the name for the next version, 7.0. In a recent release update posting, it was announced that Debian GNU/Linux 7.0 will be named “Wheezy”.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu

        • Ubuntu 10.10 beta arrives with new netbook UI

          Canonical has announced the availability of the Ubuntu 10.10 beta release. The new version of the popular Linux distribution, codenamed Maverick Meerkat, is scheduled for final release in October. It brings some noteworthy user interface improvements and updated software.

          The beta ships with GNOME 2.31, which introduces support for the new dconf configuration storage system. Ubuntu’s standard F-Spot photo tool has been replaced by Shotwell, a relatively new application that is developed by nonprofit software group Yorba. Although it’s not as feature-complete as F-Spot, it’s progressing quickly and has a lot to offer.

          Canonical has continued its work on panel indicators, especially the audio indicator which now has playback controls in addition to a volume management slider. This will eliminate the need for individual audio applications to have their own notification area icons.

        • Install Nautilus Elementary In Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick Meerkat
        • Ubunchu Episode 7: “The Ultimate Installfest” is out September 5, 2010
        • Kazam Screencasting tool 0.1 released – the bar just got raised
        • Full Circle Side-Pod #3: Where’s the Neurotic Numbat?
        • Preview: Ubuntu 10.10 Beta

          Just like Ubuntu 10.04 threw me off (too many changes rushed into a release that felt unfinished and unstable, which was specially concerning given its LTS nature), Ubuntu 10.10 got me excited and hungry for more. I think most of the changes that were introduced for Lucid Lynx are now mature and make more sense, even things like the window button position shift (alright, maybe not this one) or the “Social Desktop”.

          There are still some rough edges in terms of Look&Feel (default icon theme, GDM theme), but the improvement is obvious. The application catalog is still not my favorite, but customizing it to one’s liking should take less than an hour total. The installation wizard enhancements are excellent and I believe will set the standard other Linux distros will look up to. Last but not least, the Software Center is finally coming to life and it excels, right up there with Linux Mint’s (which Canonical got so much from).

          All in all, Ubuntu 10.10 raised the bar again. I personally believe that it’s biggest accomplishment is that it makes the “Ubuntu: Linux for human beings” motto full justice.

          I did skip Ubuntu 10.04, but they can already sign me in for a heavy dose of Maverick Meerkat!

        • Ubuntu 10.10 (Maverick Meerkat) Beta Screenshots Gallery
        • Ubuntu 10.10 “Maverick Meerkat” Wallpapers

          Here are all the new wallpapers that are included in Ubuntu 10.10 “Maverick Meerkat”

        • Ubuntu 10.10 sneak peak

          Of course I am leaving out a lot of minor bits and pieces. Nearly every (if not all) applications have been updated and run better and faster. But what you have seen above are the MAJOR changes to the Ubuntu LTS release. This October is going to be an exciting period, once again, for Ubuntu fans. My biggest hope is that third-party vendors will have applications already listed in the Ubuntu Software Center prior to the official release. That would go a long way to validate Linux on the desktop.

        • Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick Meerkat Beta Has Been Released! Screenshots And Videos Inside (Both Ubuntu Desktop And Ubuntu Netbook Edition)
        • Flavours and Variants

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Phones

      • USB-Based PSFreedom PS3 Exploit Now Adapted To Palm Pre

        Huzzah! Now the Palm Pre can be used to hack the PS3, too. Developer blake_zero over at PSX-Scene has released an adaptation of KaKaRoTo’s USB hub-emulating PSFreedom exploit, which takes advantage of the same heap overflow vulnerability in PSGroove, the initial open-source implementation of PS Jailbreak’s jigkick wonder. Currently, only source code is available.

      • Android

        • Top 5 best puzzle games on Android

          Everyone likes puzzle games. They might not be your favourite type of game, but I guarantee we’ve all played and enjoyed one at some point in our lives.

          Which probably explains why it continues to be one of the most, if not the most popular games genre around.

        • Challenging Apple’s ambitions

          Samsung and Toshiba are among a crowd of companies unveiling tablet computers at IFA, many of them running on Android. They are almost all going to be cheaper than the iPad and do much the same. Only the sheer power of the Apple brand, along with the integration with its App Store, could keep the iPad ahead of its new rivals.

          [...]

          The Toshiba Folio 100 is bigger, a bit like a more widescreen iPad. Again, it does most of the things that an iPad does, but although, like the Tab, it runs on Android, it has a slightly clunky interface. And because the Google OS isn’t yet built to work with screens this big you have to rely on Toshiba’s own apps rather than the Android Market.

        • XDA Discovers Updated ROM for Nexus One

          Score another one for the open source Android developer community over at XDA. Some of the users over there have discovered another update to the Froyo ROM for the Nexus One, with build number FRG33. It has been found that the ROM has some minor bugfixes and a newer version of the installed radio than in the latest official released build.

Free Software/Open Source

  • Web Browsers

    • New features in Google Chrome 6

      Google Chrome made its debut in September 2008 and just two years later, it is the third most widely used browser with around 7.5% of the market. Only Microsoft’s Internet Explorer and Mozilla Firefox remain ahead of it and these two have been around for considerably longer. However, with Google Chrome’s current momentum, the situation may not remain so for very long.

    • Mozilla

      • No 64-bit version of Firefox 4.0?

        Seriously? Do they have any idea how many Mac users are out there running 10.4 or older? OS 10.5 came out in October of 2007. Windows 2000 came out ten years ago.

        Linux “minimum version” is listed as “to be determined”. I’m guessing that based on the complete disregard for anyone in the Mac world running a legacy OS, Linux’s minimum version will be 2.6.30?

        I know, all vitriol and sarcasm aside, I understand that there’s a lot going into the Firefox 4.0 release. And I suppose if I was feeling particularly masochistic, I could grab the source code of the latest build of the final release and just compile my own 64-bit binary.

  • Oracle

    • Oracle offers student coders free access to JavaOne

      The announcement comes a day after Google technologist Tim Bray wrote a blog post that suggested Oracle doesn’t place great importance on developing “mindshare” among software developers.

    • Could Oracle fracture open source community?

      An Oracle was a person or agency considered to be a source of wise counsel or prophetic opinion. How can that particular definition be applied to Oracle the company? It can’t. In fact I would claim that Oracle, the company, is quite the opposite of “wise” or “prophetic”.

  • BSD

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

    • Free Software Needs Free Tools

      The GNU GPL license and source code mean little to a user attempting to modify a program without free access to the software required to make that modification. Is is not only developers’ freedom at stake but, eventually, their users and all future “downstream” developers as well. Those choosing to use nonfree tools put everyone at the whim of the groups and individuals who produce the tools they depend on.

      While proprietary development tools may help free software developers create more free software in the short term, it is at an unacceptable cost. In the controversial area of private software and network services, free software developers should err on the side of “too much” freedom. To compromise our principles in attempts to achieve more freedom is self-defeating, unstable, and ultimately unfair, to our users and to the larger free software development community.

      Just as the early GNU maintainers first focused on creating free tools for creating free software, we should ensure that we can produce software freely and using unambiguously free tools. Our failure to do so will result in software that is, indirectly, less free. We should resist using tools that do not allow us the freedoms we are trying to provide our users in the development of their software and we should apply pressure on the producers of our development tools. Free software has not achieved success by compromising our principles. We will not be well served, technically, pragmatically, or ethically, by compromising on freedom of the tools we use to build a free world.

    • Free Software Needs Free Tools

      The article was published in the Spring 2010 FSF Bulletin which was mailed to all FSF associate members. I’ve also posted the article on my website and in PDF form as well.

    • Revolution OS is Open Source: The Movie

      As the viewer would hope, this piece features interviews from most of the biggest names that have helped shape the open source landscape over the last decade including Richard Stallman, Michael Tiemann, Linus Torvalds, Larry Augustin, Eric S. Raymond, Bruce Perens, Frank Hecker and Brian Behlendorf.

      [...]

      Linus Torvalds is then interviewed on his development of the Linux kernel as well as on the GNU/Linux naming controversy and Linux’s further evolution, including its commercialisation.

  • Project Releases

  • Openness/Sharing

    • Open Hardware

      • Open Hardware Summit Comes to Queens

        The Open Hardware Movement is dedicated to producing a real and enforceable license for open source hardware. This license would be similar to a Creative Commons License for artistic Creations and the Gnu Public License for software.

Leftovers

  • Texas opens inquiry into Google search rankings

    Google Inc.’s methods for recommending websites are being reviewed by Texas’ attorney general in an investigation spurred by complaints that the company has abused its power as the Internet’s dominant search engine.

  • Author Simon Singh Puts Up a Fight in the War on Science

    For a while there, things didn’t look too good for British writer Simon Singh. The best-selling author of the science histories Big Bang and Fermat’s Enigma knew he was heading into controversial territory when he switched tracks to cowrite a book investigating alternative medicine, Trick or Treatment? What Singh didn’t count on, however, was that writing a seemingly innocuous article for London’s The Guardian newspaper about especially outrageous chiropractic claims—one of the subjects he researched for the book—would end up threatening his career. The British Chiropractic Association sued Singh, hoping to use Britain’s draconian libel laws to force him to withdraw his statements and issue an apology.

  • Going back to the past to survive
  • Science

  • Security/Aggression

    • Cars: The next hacking frontier?

      Of course, your car is probably not a high-priority target for most malicious hackers. But security experts tell CNET that car hacking is starting to move from the realm of the theoretical to reality, thanks to new wireless technologies and evermore dependence on computers to make cars safer, more energy efficient, and modern.

    • Police sergeant suspended after assault on woman

      Dramatic video footage has emerged of a police sergeant dragging a women to a cell and hurling her inside, an incident which has led to his suspension.

    • More War Lies
  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • Greenpeace activists arrested after abandoning occupation of Arctic oil rig

      Four Greenpeace activists who halted drilling by a British-owned oil exploration rig off Greenland have been arrested after they abandoned their occupation because of severe weather.

      Greenlandic police arrested the four after high winds buffeted the Stena Don drilling rig overnight, forcing them to abandon mountaineering-style platforms they had suspended by ropes underneath the platform less than 48 hours earlier.

    • Paris Over Amherst: Food, Energy, and Credit

      As readers understand, fossil fuels have played an enormous role in the long-cycle upgrading of agricultural yields. And while energy-dense fossils fuels are indeed a miracle, now that oil production globally is no longer increasing (with a new price regime reflecting that change) the cost inputs to food production are rising.

    • Mexico’s foreign minister dampens hopes of Cancun climate deal

      Mexico’s foreign minister today dampened hopes of a breakthrough deal at the Cancun climate change talks in November, saying negotiators are focusing on making progress on smaller issues before perhaps seeking a comprehensive agreement in 2011 or later.

    • If Rajendra Pachauri goes, who on Earth would want to be IPCC chair?

      When it first emerged in India that the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) had made a major blunder about the date the Himalayan glaciers were predicted to melt, the sceptics predictably called for the head of Rajendra Pachauri, the IPCC’s chair. There followed a series of malicious falsehoods and disinformation from journalists and bloggers about his business interests.

      Without waiting for retractions or the evidence of any inquiries or investigations, leading western environmentalists and other commentators shamefully rushed in to say he should resign. And now, following the InterAcademy Council (IAC) report into the IPCC’s processes earlier this week (which also found Pachauri not guilty of any misconduct), commentators and editorials in the Times, Financial Times, Time, New Scientist and Telegraph have called for his resignation. The BBC’s Roger Harrabin has also suggested that Pachauri’s “time appears to be running out”. The reason most given? That by staying, Pachauri would give the sceptics more ammunition.

  • Finance

    • Goldman Sachs Said to Shut Principal Strategies Unit

      Goldman Sachs Group Inc. is disbanding its principal-strategies business, one of the groups that makes bets with the firm’s own money, to comply with new U.S. rules aimed at curbing risk, two people with knowledge of the decision said.

    • AIG Derivative Suit Against Greenberg Settles for $90 Million

      American International Group has finally closed the book on the turbulent Maurice “Hank” Greenberg era. On Thursday the embattled former chief executive officer and other defendants agreed to settle a derivative suit alleging that they fraudulently used various accounting tricks to mask problems at the company. Under the deal, which must be approved by Vice Chancellor Leo Strine Jr. of Delaware Chancery Court, AIG will receive $90 million. At the same time, Greenberg and former AIG Chief Financial Officer Howard Smith will be reimbursed $60 million for their legal fees. Both sums will be paid by AIG’s insurance carriers.

  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

    • Censored! Craigslist Adult Services Blocked in U.S.

      The “adult services” listing on Craiglist was removed late Friday from its U.S.-based sites and replaced with the word “censored.”

      Craigslist did not announce the move and its blog was not updated as of Saturday morning. Craigslist did not immediately respond to e-mail and voice mail messages seeking comment. Adult services listings continue to be available outside the United States.

    • Craigslist removes its controversial adult section
    • School Must Pay Lawyer in Webcam Case

      Federal prosecutors said they will not charge a suburban school district officials with spying on students and families through school-issued laptop computers with remotely activated webcams, but Lower Merion School District still faces litigation from parents and a student. On Monday, a federal judge ordered the district to pay the family’s attorney $260,000 for his work on the case.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality/DRM

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • Sharron Angle hit with R-J copyright infringement lawsuit

        The Las Vegas Review-Journal’s copyright infringement lawsuit partner on Friday sued U.S. Senate candidate Sharron Angle over R-J material posted on her website, allegedly without authorization.

        The suit, filed in U.S. District Court in Las Vegas by Righthaven LLC, seeks damages of $150,000 against Angle personally and forfeiture of her website domain name sharronangle.com.

      • Do you download copyrighted porn? Lawsuits seek to reveal names

        The lawsuits yesterday were filed in Illinois District Court by a single lawyer, John L. Steele of the Media Copyright Group based in Chicago. Steele has set up a website advertising a “cost-effective solution for reducing P2P-based content piracy.”

        [...]

        The plaintiffs in these cases surely see this as a potentially effective tool against the piracy problem. Adult entertainment companies, in particular, likely see the benefit of potentially exposing people who download, say, transgender porn.

      • Secretary Locke Meets with Music Industry Representatives in Nashville to Discuss Piracy and Global Intellectual Property Protection

        “This administration is committed to tackling the challenges facing the music industry, because it is a fundamental issue of economic security and jobs,” Locke said. “We are continually looking for new ways to protect the creativity that is the lifeblood of Nashville and America’s economy.”

      • James Gannon Lies By Omission Yet Again – Star Article Doesn’t Disclose His CRIA Connections

        Curiously Barry Sookman’s blog is just like James Gannon’s blog. Nothing but articles that appear to be work related. Again, there’s nothing wrong with that, if they admit the connection. But they won’t. I directly asked Barry Sookman if he had any connections with the industry, and he refused to answer. His only problem is that he’s listed as a lobbyist for the CRIA by the Canadian Government. I already knew this of course – but I was curious. Would he admit something that was publicly available? No, he wouldn’t. He won’t even post the connection on his website, which claims:

      • Anti-Piracy Outfit Threatens To DoS Uncooperative Torrent Sites

        In recent years, technical anti-piracy enforcement has taken a less aggressive approach to that previously demonstrated by the infamous MediaDefender. But now, according to a company being hired to protect Bollywood blockbusters, if BitTorrent sites don’t cooperate by taking down torrents when asked, they will have denial of service attacks launched against them and material taken down by force.

      • Radiohead lend their music to fan-made live DVD

        Radiohead have thrown their support behind a fan-made live DVD, providing the hi-fi soundtrack to Czech film-makers’ amateur shots. The British band provided audio masters to the makers of Prague DVD, a DIY concert film shot on 23 August 2009.

        While the project website has been overwhelmed by traffic, samples of the Prague film have been uploaded to YouTube. It’s a strangely communal document, collecting the viewpoints of more than 50 camera-people – each with a cheap handheld Flip camera. “A group of Radiohead fans descended on the Výstaviště Holešovice exhibition hall in Prague to capture the band perform, using as many different angles as possible,” explain the film-makers. Recalling the Beastie Boys’ groundbreaking Awesome; I Fuckin’ Shot That!, the footage is scattered, inconsistent and frequently electrifying.

      • ACTA

        • ACTA will have deeper impact on Europe than on United States

          In the United States, the controversial Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement ACTA will be adopted as an “executive agreement”, without involvement of Congress. This would imply that ACTA can not change U.S. law. In the EU, ACTA needs consent of the Parliament. After that, the EU will have to fully implement ACTA, and possibly change its internal EU law. To prevent surprises, the Commission, Parliament, Council and or Member States of the EU should ask the Court of Justice of the European Union to examine whether ACTA is compatible with EU law

        • Welcome to Faces against acta

Clip of the Day

Richard Stallman – Negative Consequences


Credit: TinyOgg

09.04.10

Links 4/9/2010: Huawei and Android Phones, Toshiba and Android Tablets

Posted in News Roundup at 4:57 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Navigating a Dual World: GNU/Linux and Windows

    I did not mention one last major area in which I navigate two worlds, the area of administering my websites. I use GNU/Linux on all of my servers. However, I have to be able to talk to these servers using either my GNU/Linux machines or my Windows machine. What allows me to do this is the standard and open communication protocols that allow computers to talk regardless of what operating system is installed: http, ftp, and ssh, to name a few. The beauty of the Internet is that the communications protocols used are fully documented and this documentation is made available to everyone. Support for these protocols can then be built into every operating system by default.The Internet is becoming an operating system unto itself, and the traditional computer operating systems are becoming more and more transparent. The common primary goal of most computing devices today is to connect to the Internet to do work. The duality of the dual environment is becoming less important with each passing day. However, in the near future, navigating a dual OS environment will remain a valuable skill to have.

  • Server

    • IBM Code Unfetters Virtual Workloads

      One is KVM (Kernel-based Virtualization), a hypervisor technology that has been incorporated into the Linux kernel and is the cornerstone of Red Hat’s virtualization strategy. It has also been inserted into the Libvirt virtualization toolkit, which supports both the Citrix Xen hypervisor and the VMware hypervisors.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

  • Distributions

    • Red Hat Family

      • Fedora

        • Fedora 13 update: A month and a half or so in

          I’ve been running Fedora 13′s Xfce spin on my new Lenovo G555 laptop for about a month and a half now, and I’m very much impressed with the performance, functionality and aggressive update policy even in an already aging (by Fedora standards) release.

          [...]

          Firefox has been great. I don’t run into any of the problems I’ve had on my older hardware in terms of speed. I’m not happy with the amount of CPU the 32-bit Flash player (in the 64-bit wrapper) is eating up, but it’s manageable. Java performance in my sole use of it (a photo-upload helper) has been great.

    • Debian Family

      • Canonical/Ubuntu

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Pandigital launches a 7-inch Android e-reader at IFA 2010

      Called Novel, the 540g e-reader has an 800×600 colour TFT LCD touchscreen with virtual keyboard and has software for the downloading and presentation of e-books. It comes in black or white and runs Android 2.1, with a Samsung ARM 11 mobile processor, 1GB of memory, WiFi, a 1,600mAhr battery, accelerometers for portrait or landscape orientation and an SD card slot for up to 32GB. It can also be used as an alarm clock.

    • Phones

      • Nokia/MeeGo

        • WeTab is based on MeeGo
        • More MeeGo screenshots surface, shows promise

          You may recall that MeeGo is a new smartphone OS from Intel and Nokia and it merges the Maemo and Moblin platforms. It is expected to be a modern OS on par with the iPhone and Android, and the screen shots we’ve seen do look pretty good.

          The screenshot above shows a little of the multitasking interface, which kind of looks like a mix of the way Android and webOS handle this. It should also have little carousel animations and other flourishes for visual flair.

      • Android

    • Tablets

      • TOC’s Wednesday devices, gadgets and ereaders update

        With the IFA Consumer Electronics Unlimited techno-smorgasbord set to open this Friday, there’s a lot of buzz going around about upcoming announcements and unveilings. Much of the pre-show buzz is centered around Android-based competition for the Apple iPad.

      • Android Tablet Deluge Is Just Beginning

        Archos continues to embrace Android in a big way. Yesterday they announced not one, not two, but five new Android ‘tablets.’ They range in size from a 2.8″ screen (which is why I put tablets in quotes) to 10.1″. All of them are running Android 2.2, but sadly, none of them have the Android Market included. Instead they’ll be running Archos’ AppsLib. The top of the line Archos 101 has a 1 Ghz ARM Cortex A8 processor, a 10.1″, 1024×600 capacitive touch screen, 720P video playback capability, HDMI out, front facing camera and a kickstand, all for $300. It should be out in mid-October. CrunchGear has a full rundown of all 5 models.

      • Toshiba touts £329 Folio Android tablet
      • Samsung Galaxy Tab Rooted… A Month Before Release

        The folks at Sera-Apps, a German group of Android developers, have not only managed to get their hands on a prototype of the Samsung Galaxy Tab a month before the device goes on sale, but they managed to root the device at IFA, the world’s largest consumer electronics show being held in Germany.

Free Software/Open Source

  • Google Open Sources More of Wave So Developers Can Take Advantage

    Google has given an update on its immediate plans for Google Wave. As you probably know, the company recently announced that it would be shutting down Google Wave as a standalone product, thought Google said it would preserve the technology behind Wave for future use and integration with other Google products.

  • Events/Awards

    • Welcome to the 2010 Open Source Awards

      The Open Source Awards is an annual online event held by Packt Publishing to distinguish excellence among Open Source projects.

      [...]

      The nominations will end on September 17.

  • Openness/Sharing

    • Mark Waid on Delivery, Content, and the Gulf Between

      And I’ll tell you why. It’s not because people “like stealing.” It’s because the greatest societal change in the last five years is that we are entering an era of sharing. Twitter and YouTube and Facebook–they’re all about sharing. Sharing links, sharing photographs, sending some video of some cat doing something stupid–that’s the era we’re entering. And whether or not you’re sharing things that technically aren’t yours to share, whether or not you’re angry because you see this as a “generation of entitlement,” that’s not the issue–the issue is, it’s happening, and the internet’s ability to reward sharing has reignited this concept that the public domain has cultural value. And I understand if you are morally outraged about it and you believe to your core that an entire generation is criminal and they’re taking food off your table, I respect that.

    • Open Data

  • Programming

    • Day of The Dead: Web Drives Strong Demand for Java Skills

      Anyway the point of this post is really just to riff on the data from simplyhired, as per the graph above. A 59% increase in bobs since January 2009? Not bad for a dead technology. Java has plenty of runway left and plenty of room for innovation.

  • Standards/Consortia

    • Google Now Indexes SVG Files

      Google is now indexing SVG files. SVG, which stands for scalable vector graphics, is a widely-deployed, royalty-free, XML-based format for vector graphics and support for interactivity. The format was developed and is maintained by the W3C SVG Working Group.

Leftovers

  • Why Wasn’t The AP Able To Get A Better Deal From Google?

    And other AP officials had also said they wanted major news search engines, including presumably Google News, to feature “the original source or the most authoritative source”—frequently the AP—at the top of their results. Curley had said the AP would only work with “those who use our principles” saying that “if you can’t do that, or if you won’t do that, let’s not waste time.”

  • HP Agrees to Pay $55 Million to Settle Gov’t Fraud Charges

    Hewlett-Packard will pay the U.S. government US$55 million to settle allegations that it defrauded the U.S. General Service Administration and other agencies by paying kickbacks to systems integrators in exchange for recommendations that agencies purchase HP products, the U.S. Department of Justice announced Monday.

  • Accenture, Cisco and Sun Still Face Kickbacks Charges

    After recent settlements by Hewlett-Packard and EMC in a long-standing government contracting fraud case, three major IT and consulting companies are still embroiled in lawsuits brought by two former insiders.

    Lawsuits alleging a widespread kickback scheme among U.S. government IT contractors remain active against Accenture, Cisco Systems and Sun Microsystems, according to court documents and a lawyer for whistleblowers Norman Rille and Neal Roberts. Rille, a former manager for Accenture, and Roberts, a former partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers, filed the lawsuits in 2004 in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Arkansas.

  • HP Settles False Claims, Kickback Charges for $55 Million

    Not long ago, Apple was in the headlines after a former manager was indicted for receiving kickbacks from suppliers in Asia in exchange for information that would help them land contracts with the Cupertino, Calif.-based company. Now it’s HP’s turn for a kickback scandal.

  • Tosh has tiniest flash bits

    Toshiba has started mass-producing NAND flash ships using a 24nm process, and is offering the world’s smallest 8GB flash chips.

  • Toshiba recalls 41,000 computers over risk of burns

    Toshiba has announced the voluntary recall of about 41,000 notebook computers worldwide at risk of overheating and burning users.

  • Health/Nutrition

    • Are the days of kidney dialysis numbered?

      There’s no gentle way to put it. Chronic kidney failure is ugly and often deadly, and more people in the States are suffering from it every year, with increasing rates of diabetes and hypertension contributing to the problem.

  • Security/Aggression

    • Scientists Question Safety Of New Airport Scanners

      After the “underwear bomber” incident on Christmas Day, President Obama accelerated the deployment of new airport scanners that look beneath travelers’ clothes to spot any weapons or explosives.

      Fifty-two of these state-of-the-art machines are already scanning passengers at 23 U.S. airports. By the end of 2011, there will be 1,000 machines and two out of every three passengers will be asked to step into one of the new machines for a six-second head-to-toe scan before boarding.

    • Corporate espionage for dummies: HP scanners
    • Hackers blind quantum cryptographers

      Quantum hackers have performed the first ‘invisible’ attack on two commercial quantum cryptographic systems. By using lasers on the systems — which use quantum states of light to encrypt information for transmission — they have fully cracked their encryption keys, yet left no trace of the hack.

    • A Trojan hits Adobe Air Tweetdeck

      HACKERS HAVE UPDATED a Trojan virus that bypasses sandbox insecurity on Adobe Air apps like Tweet Deck.

    • Scam preys on required TweetDeck update
    • Malware Convention — Not a Good Idea

      The conference coordinator Rajshekhar Murthy attempted to put a positive spin on the conference, Krebs reported. “While a conference can be done by inviting the best / well known security experts who can share statistics, slides and ‘analysis’ of malwares, it is not of any benefit to the community today except that of awareness. The need of MalCon conference is [to] bridge that ignored gap between security companies and malcoders. They have to get on a common platform and talk to each other.”

    • Huge spamming botnet injured but still alive

      A botnet responsible for a significant amount of spam has been crippled but may reconstitute itself in a matter of weeks, according to vendor M86 Security.

    • Alleged Ransomware Gang Investigated by Moscow Police

      Russian police are reportedly investigating a criminal gang that installed malicious “ransomware” programs on thousands of PCs and then forced victims to send SMS messages in order to unlock their PCs.

    • Russian cops cuff 10 ransomware Trojan suspects
    • Wikileaks founder blasts reopening of rape probe

      Wikileaks founder Julian Assange has blasted Sweden’s investigation into allegations against him for sexual misconduct after prosecutors reopened a probe into charges he raped a woman last month.

      “It appears to be highly irregular and some kind of legal circus,” Assange told the TV service of newspaper Expressen on Thursday. “Today I also had a case filed against me in the United States on a wholly unrelated manner,” he added without elaborating.

    • Apple Quicktime – Absichtliche Backdoor gefährdet Windows-PCs Apple Quicktime – Intentional Backdoor vulnerable Windows PCs

      Several websites report an apparently intentionally built-in Apple’s Quicktime loophole that a security risk to Windows machine is.
      Laut Webseiten wie Heise oder The Inquirer kennt das ActiveX-Plugin von Quicktime einen von Apple nicht dokumentierten Befehl, der von dem Sicherheitsexperte Ruben Santamarta gefunden wurde. According to websites such as Heise or The Inquirer knows the ActiveX plug-in Quicktime one of Apple undocumented command, the security expert Ruben found was that of Santa Marta. Der Parameter “_Marshaled_pUnk” sorgt dafür, dass über Quicktime andere Programmbibliotheken aufgerufen und deren Funktionen verwendet werden können. The parameter “_Marshaled_pUnk” ensures that called Quicktime on other libraries and their functions can be used.

    • Ex-spook jailed for selling secrets

      Ex-MI6 worker Daniel Houghton has been sentenced to 12 months in prison for unlawfully disclosing top secret material, in breach of the Official Secrets Act.

      Houghton, 25 years old and previously living in Hoxton, London, worked for MI6 for just under two years. He left the organisation with Top Secret files which he then tried to sell to MI5 agents masquerading as agents of a foreign power.

    • German gov pooh-poohs biometric ID card hack

      The biometric ID cards store a scan of a user’s fingerprints along with a six-digit PIN that can be used to digitally sign official forms. Hackers from the Chaos Computer Club, however, were able to use home scanners that work with the cards to extract personal information including a fingerprint scan and the six-digit PIN from RFID the chip embedded in the cards.

    • Fake Antivirus Software Uses Ransom Threats
  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • Oil sands release pollutants, contrary to government study

      The extraction of heavy crude oil from oil sands in Canada is releasing as many as 13 kinds of pollutants into the surrounding air and water, according to a study published in PNAS this week. The independent report directly contradicts the results of the government-administered Regional Aquatic Monitoring Program (RAMP) that claimed neither humans nor the environment were at risk from the oil extraction.

      Oil sands are swaths of ground that are laced with heavy crude oil that can be extracted and refined into fuel. Development of oil sands in Canada has been taking place since 1967, but scientists have long been uncertain of the production’s impact on the environment.

    • The Tokyo Two: Whaling, Activism, and Human Rights

      At the start the media strongly covered the embezzlement scandal, and asked serious questions about the industry for the first time. However, one month after we exposed the large-scale theft of whale meat and embarrassed the authorities, they struck back, and had us arrested, interrogated, detained for 26 days and finally charged with “theft” and “trespass”.

      The media were tipped off about our arrest and the raids of our homes, so when the images of our arrest appeared on national television the embezzlement scandal was dismissed and we were immediately seen as criminals by the public.

    • Crisis Commons, and the Challenges of Distributed Disaster Response

      The World Bank wasn’t the only large group interested in working with crisis hackers. Google, Yahoo! and Microsoft came together to found the Random Hacks of Kindness event, designed to let programmers “hack for humanity” in marathon sessions around the world.

    • Arctic Round-Up: New Sea Routes Opening Up, New Infrastructure Imagined, and Canada’s Taking Action

      Melting and thinning ice in the Arctic has proceeded so rapidly that new sea routes are opening up, infrastructure is being imagined, and countries like Canada are working to assert their sovereignty in the north…

    • The ‘cure’ for nuclear waste is worse than the illness
    • Untangling the ‘Environmentalist’s Paradox’: Is It All About Speed?

      We hear lots of concerned chatter these days – not least, here on this site – about peak oil, peak water, deforestation, resource depletion and the like, but a popular riposte offered by those doubting such concerns is something commonly referred to as the “Environmentalist’s Paradox”.

    • Climate Skeptic – Now with Less Skepticism!: Lomborg Changes Tune

      For those who – like me – missed the news on Monday: the world’s most well known climate change skeptic has done a dramatic about face.

    • How an Arctic oil rush will help suffocate the planet

      We’re not just saying ‘go beyond oil’ because it fits on a banner. We’re urging world governments to get their heads out of their oil wells and recognise that whoever’s oil we are burning we need to start stopping now, because in the end we are all stuck under the one sweater, and its getting really tight.

    • Greenpeace activists occupy Arctic oil rig

      Our activists are suspended 15 meters above the frigid Arctic waters of Baffin Bay. They have taken up position on the drilling rig Stena Don to call for a ban on deep sea oil drilling in the Arctic, and demand that ‘wild cat’ oil company Cairn energy stop drilling, pack up and go home. The banner? “Hands off the Arctic, go beyond oil!”

    • Bosnia probes video of girl tossing puppies into river

      Bosnian police said on Wednesday they were investigating claims by a local animals rights group that a Bosnian girl threw half a dozen puppies into a river in a video that sparked global outrage.

    • Military Study Warns of a Potentially Drastic Oil Crisis

      The issue is so politically explosive that it’s remarkable when an institution like the Bundeswehr, the German military, uses the term “peak oil” at all. But a military study currently circulating on the German blogosphere goes even further.

    • Greenpeace Protests Facebook’s Data Center

      Facebook’s won the support of a lot of people as it builds a data center in Prineville, Oregon; an official Facebook Page is full of positive comments from locals. However, because the facility will primarily be powered by coal, Greenpeace – along with around 500,000 individuals – has sided against it.

  • Finance

    • When IT Fails
    • Lehman Derivatives Records a `Mess,’ Barclays Executive Says

      Barclays Plc had no idea how big Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc.’s futures-and-options trading business was when it considered taking over the defunct bank’s derivatives trades at exchanges in 2008, a Barclays executive said.

      “Lehman’s books were in such a mess that I don’t think they knew where they were,” Elizabeth James, a director of Barclays’s futures business, testified today in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Manhattan. James worked on Barclays’s purchase of Lehman’s brokerage during the 2008 financial crisis.

  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

    • Lower Merion School District ordered to pay plaintiff’s lawyer $260,000

      A federal judge Monday ordered the Lower Merion School District to pay about $260,000 now – and potentially much more later – to the lawyer who brought the lawsuit over the district’s webcam monitoring.

      In a 14-page opinion, Senior U.S. District Judge Jan E. DuBois said Mark S. Haltzman deserved to be paid for work that led to a preliminary injunction against the district in May. And he said Haltzman could submit the rest of his bills when the case ended.

    • Andy Coulson under pressure as furore over phone hacking claims grows

      A few paragraphs, tucked inside a lengthy article on the News of the World phone hacking scandal, are posing a threat to the career of one of David Cameron’s closest advisers. Andy Coulson “actively encouraged” the hacking of phones, his former News of the World colleague Sean Hoare told the magazine.

    • Google Settles Privacy Lawsuit Over Buzz

      Google is spending US$8.5 million to settle a class-action lawsuit filed over the rollout of its Google Buzz social-networking service.

    • Ad watchdog to bite Facebook, Twitter

      The Advertising Standards Authority is to take responsibility for more online content, not just the paid-for advertisements it currently regulates.

      The ASA already covers content like banner adverts, pop-ups and paid-for search terms. From 1 March 2011 the new ASA rules cover content hosted by companies themselves, such as their own websites.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality/DRM

Clip of the Day

Richard Stallman – DRM


Credit: TinyOgg

Links 4/9/2010: ‘Amnesia: The Dark Descent’ as GNU/Linux Demo, WeTab Runs MeeGo

Posted in News Roundup at 3:59 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC)

      • Presenting the Local Akademy Team 2010

        It is a while now since Akademy 2010, KDE’s annual conference, came to a close. There were a huge number of blogs and articles about what happened and it is safe to say that the latest conference was a success. Many attendees noted how smoothly everything ran, thanks to the KDE organizers and the local team. The local team did an awesome job, not only during the conference itself but also during the many months of thought and hard work before Akademy. The Dot managed to catch up with some key players in the local team to get their take on the KDE invasion of Tampere and find out what it is like to organize such a large event.

      • Help Test the Next Generation of KDE’s Kontact
    • GNOME Desktop

  • Distributions

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Cortex-A8 SODIMM module supports Linux, Android

      Direct Insight announced a SODIMM-sized COM (computer on module) based on TI’s Sitara AM3703 or DM3730, with ARM Cortex-A8 cores clocked at up to 1GHz. The SwiftModule-DM offers up to 256MB of RAM and 256MB of flash storage, and a touchscreen interface supporting up to 2048 x 2048 pixels, and is compatible with both Linux and Android.

    • Media players offer 3.2-inch displays, Android 2.1

      Philips and Samsung have both announced Android 2.1-based, 3.2-inch portable media players (PMPs), primed to compete with Apple’s newly upgraded iPod Touch. Philips’ GoGear Connect reportedly includes Wi-Fi, GPS, and Android Market access, while Samsung’s Galaxy Player 50 offers both a videocam and two-megapixel camera in addition to its multimedia capabilities.

    • Phones

      • Nokia/MeeGo

        • Neofonie WeTab now runs MeeGo Linux

          The Neofonie WeTab gained grabbed a lot of headlines when the company first introduced it a few months ago. And why not? The tablet is kind of everything the Apple iPad is not. It has a nice big 11.6 inch, 1366 x 768 pixel HD capacitive toushcreen display. It supports HDMI output, has 2 USB ports, and a 1.3MP camera. It also packs 802.11a/b/g/n WiFi and Bluetooth 2.1.

        • Toshiba shows off 10.1 inch Android tablet

          Toshiba Europe announced a 10.1-inch Android 2.2 media tablet, due for a fourth quarter release in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. The Folio 100 runs Android 2.2 on an Nvidia Tegra 2 processor and offers a 10.1-inch, WSVGA display, but it lacks both GPS and Android Market access.

        • Tablet Skirmish Heats Up With Toshiba Entry

          Toshiba has announced its own entrant into the tablet market with the Folio 100, which will run on the Android 2.2 operating system. Sporting a screen just over 10 inches, the device will be larger than other early competitors to Apple’s (Nasdaq: AAPL) iPad tablet computer, such as the Dell (Nasdaq: DELL) Streak.

    • Tablets

      • Strong early sales of $140 Android tablet surprise retailer

        Beijing-based international online reseller LightInTheBox.com announced it has had two months of surprisingly strong sales of a seven-inch, $140 Android tablet. The aPad Android Tablet runs Android 1.6 — with Android Market support — on Samsung’s ARM11-based 667MHz S3C6410, and offers 1GB of flash, an SD slot, Wi-Fi, and an 800 x 480-pixel screen, says the company.

      • Toshiba debuts Android-powered Folio 100 tablet

        Samsung’s Galaxy Tab got a lot of the attention Thursday, but Toshiba had an Android tablet of its own to debut here at the IFA electronics show: the Folio 100.

        Unlike the smaller Tab, the Folio bears more of an outward resemblance to Apple’s iPad, the dominant tablet device on the market today. And where Samsung will sell the Tab only through phone companies as a kind of smartphone on steroids, Toshiba’s Folio will like the iPad come in 3G and non-3G models when it goes on sale in Europe in the fourth quarter.

        The Folio will cost 399 euros (about $511) for the version with just Wi-Fi networking; the 3G version price jumps to 499 euros (about $639). It’s got a 10.1-inch multitouch screen with 1024×600-pixel resolution, an Nvidia Tegra processor, stereo speakers, a 1.3-megapixel Webcam, two USB ports, an SD card slot, an HDMI connector for sending video to other screens, Bluetooth communications, and 16GB of memory.

      • Bigger is Better… Right?

Free Software/Open Source

  • CAOS Theory Podcast 2010.09.03

    Topics for this podcast:

    *Open source seeding the clouds
    *Canonical’s cloud subscription pivot
    *Hypertable steers commercial route for NoSQL database
    *Implications of Oracle’s Java lawsuit

  • Events

    • Finding more women to speak at Ohio LinuxFest: success!

      Some conference organisers will say “we didn’t get any submissions from women” to explain the lack of women on their stages. As of two years ago, the Ohio LinuxFest was in that category. With a little outreach effort, and embracing diversity as a core value, the Ohio LinuxFest has successfully recruited more women to share their experience at OLF.

    • Ohio LinuxFest Registration and Contest Deadline Extended
    • Ohio LinuxFest Proves Real FOSS Diversity

      The annual Ohio LinuxFest is a genuine grass-roots community event. It is one of the most fun and most worthwhile Linux fests, and one of the most welcoming– everyone from brand-new Linux users, people curious about Linux, to wizened gurus and everyone in between are welcome.

    • Interviews from GUADEC, Part 3
    • ApacheCon NA 2010 registration opens

      The Apache Software Foundation has announced that registration is now open for this year’s ApacheCon North America. ApacheCon NA 2010, the official user conference of the Apache Software Foundation, will take place from the 1st to the 5th of November at The Westin Peachtree Plaza in Atlanta, Georgia.

    • [Registration Opens for ApacheCon North America 2010]
    • ApacheCon 2010 Registration Is Open
    • Call for Papers for SCALE 9x opens

      Organizers of the Southern California Linux Expo 9x have announced that the Call for Papers for SCALE 9x opens Wednesday, Sept. 1, with five speaker tracks.

    • XDS 2010 Has Been Moved To A Tobacco Factory

      Among the topics to be discussed at this ex-tobacco factory event are whether X drivers should be merged back into the X.Org Server for the 1.10 release, DRM/KMS support on non-Linux platforms, what hardware should continue to be supported and what drivers should be eliminated, a review of the latest DRI2 protocol additions, a development process recap, a multi-touch session, a session on X Gestures, handling input events, board of directors chat, documentation / how to get more individuals involved, EGL in Mesa, and libxkbcommon maintainer-ship. Birds of feather sessions for Xephyr, XCB, and the Wacom support are also planned.

  • Web Browsers

  • Oracle

    • MySQL Connector Released for OpenOffice.org

      The OpenOffice.org community has released a MySQL connector for OpenOffice. This allows you to edit the table in any MySQL installation from any desktop installation of OpenOffice.

  • Education

    • LiveText – A Cross Platform Online Education System

      In the last couple months I have posted my disgust about two different online education systems that are being used at various colleges around the United States. My dislike for these systems stems from the fact that even though they are web based, they do not adhere to Web Standards. This means that they are not fully accessible on FOS operating systems as they should be.

      [...]

      So if you are an educator looking for a platform to teach your online class through (or an administrator at a school that make the decision for many) I implore you to choose LiveText or another system that supports all operating systems (Not just those paying a Windows Tax).

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

  • Project Releases

    • [ANNOUNCE] Git 1.7.2.3
    • Language agnostic web server Mongrel2 1.0 released

      Version 1.0 of Mongrel2, a language agnostic web server initiated by Zed Shaw, has been released. Shaw announced the release on his blog of the project which began development only three months ago. “I love this project” said Shaw, “Even if it doesn’t go anywhere and nobody uses it I am so happy I got to work on another cool idea nobody’s really done before”. Mongrel2 uses a simple backend protocol to allow Ruby, Python, C++, .Net and other languages make use of it’s ability to handle not just HTTP but Flash XMLSockets, WebSockets or Long Polling, and it’s event based I/O system.

    • First Alpha of uTorrent Server for Linux Released

      The uTorrent Server application provides a state-of-the-art implementation of the popular BitTorrent protocol and a full-featured WebUI (web-based user interface).

Leftovers

  • GPU vs. CPU Computing

    Graphics processing units (GPUs) have, for many years, powered the display of images and motion on computer displays. GPUs are now powerful enough to do more than just move images across the screen. They are capable of performing high-end computations that are the staple of many engineering activities.

    Benchmarks that focus on floating point arithmetic, those most often used in these engineering computations, show that GPUs can perform such computations much faster than the traditional central processing units (CPUs) used in today’s workstations—sometimes as much as 20 times faster, depending on the computation.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • Oil rig fire triggers new pollution fear in Gulf of Mexico

      Fresh fears about drilling in the Gulf of Mexico were raised today when fire forced workers to abandon an oil and gas platform, just six months after the BP explosion that created an environmental disaster in the region.

    • Tibetan nomads struggle as grasslands disappear from the roof of the world

      Like generations of Tibetan nomads before him, Phuntsok Dorje makes a living raising yaks and other livestock on the vast alpine grasslands that provide a thatch on the roof of the world.

      But in recent years the vegetation around his home, the Tibetan plateau, has been destroyed by rising temperatures, excess livestock and plagues of insects and rodents.

  • Finance

    • Afghanistan tries to prevent run on its biggest bank

      Afghan authorities today attempted to prevent a potentially catastrophic run on the country’s biggest bank after allegations of corruption and mismanagement led regulators to replace two of its top executives.

      The revolution at the top of Kabul Bank, which is responsible for paying the salaries of nearly all the country’s policemen and soldiers, has caused shock in the capital amid fears of a collapse in confidence in Afghanistan’s ramshackle and corrupt financial system.

  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • MLB Decapitates Flugtag’s Phlyin’ Phanatic

      Major League Baseball is taking a guillotine to Phillie royalty. Well, a flying stuffed rendition of Phillie royalty.

      A Flugtag team that spent $3,000 and 400 hours building a flying machine topped with a replica of one of Major League Baseball’s favorite mascots was told two days before the local competition that the Phanatic can’t fly.

    • Copyrights

      • Mark Waid Explains: Culture Is More Important Than Copyright & It’s Time To Look For Opportunities In Sharing

        He also mentions that he’s got some plans in place for how he’s going to embrace things like BitTorrent and run some interesting experiments. He points out that they’re experiments, and there’s no guarantee they’ll work, but he wants to step forward and at least try to embrace it. This is great to hear, and I look forward to seeing what kind of experiments he runs.

      • Huge Push In Brazil To Legalize File Sharing

        That said… while I appreciate getting rid of “the war on copying,” I do think there are some serious problems with a proposal like this. Copyright levies tend to have serious unintended consequences. They create large bureaucracies, where money collection and distribution is not always done fairly. In fact, they often tend to favor bigger name artists over smaller artists, and just having the bureaucracy creates overhead that goes to the bureaucracy, rather than the artists. On top of that, it takes away incentive for consumers to support artists directly through other creative business models, because they feel that they “already paid,” via the levy.

      • Here come ‘Hurt Locker’ file-sharing subpoenas
      • ACTA/HADOPI

        • ACTA Action: Call on Obama to end the secrecy, reject the treaty

          Please read and share this article by Knowledge Ecology International’s James Love, sign our anti-ACTA petition, and call on Obama to publish the treaty text.

          Two weeks ago, we delivered over 4,000 of your signatures on our ACTA petition to negotiators meeting in Washington, D.C.

        • French ISPs and French Government Locking Horns Over HADOPI Costs

          There’s a major battle brewing between the French government and the French ISPs. A line is being drawn and it’s about the money. While this was foreseeable thanks to our earlier reports, it will be very interesting to see how far the battle will escalate. One report suggests that ISPs may even opt to not honor their end of the anti-piracy effort.

Clip of the Day

It’s a Unix system


Credit: TinyOgg

09.03.10

Links 3/9/2010: Wine 1.3.2, Great Fedora Site Redesign

Posted in News Roundup at 4:47 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

  • New, open source PS3 jailbreak may get round piracy claims

    Users will need to know what they’re doing, but the hack is achievable with a $25 Teensy++ USB development board or a $30 AT90USBkey loaded with the PSGroove files – which are available here.

    The hack is essentially similar to the PS Jailbreak technique.

  • Open Source: Quality, Flexibility and Cost

    Open Source has matured to the point where it is now used to some extent in every company. 98 percent of respondents to a survey said that their organizations make use of Open Source in some way. The people answering the survey were IT professionals in areas like network operations, server management and engineering.

  • Adopting Enterprise Open Source Software

    Nagios sent me a reminder yesterday, which I finally got around to reading today, to update to the latest version of Nagios Core, 3.2.2. We were running 3.2.0, so we were a couple versions behind, so after browsing through the list of fixed bugs I thought it would be good to go ahead and upgrade. I had a meeting in fifteen minutes, and Nagios was actively monitoring servers in production.

  • Google Wave’s open source future “in a Box”

    “Wave in a Box” will include a server and web client using the same structured conversation system that appeared in Google’s own Wave service, complete with support for threaded conversations in the web client and a refined version of Wave’s client-server communications. The server is based on the FedOne example server which was released on waveprotocol.org as a basic client/server prototype. Patches that have already been contributed allow “Wave in a Box” to implement a MongoDB based persistent store which supports searching and the server will also feature the gadget, robot and data APIs which allow for external applications to offer inline information or automated services within a Wave conversation.

  • Google Wave Freed As Open Source Project

    Alex North, Software Engineer, Google Wave team, wrote on a blog, “We will expand upon the 200K lines of code we’ve already open sourced (detailed at waveprotocol.org) to flesh out the existing example Wave server and web client into a more complete application or “Wave in a Box.”

  • Nuxeo present FISE, a RESTful semantic engine

    Open source enterprise content management experts Nuxeo have announced that, as part of the IKS European project, they are working with partners in the project to develop an open source semantic engine with a RESTful interface, dubbed fise. Fise, which stands for Furtwangen IKS Semantic Engine, was initially created in March at the IKS Semantic Engine Hackathon and now Nuxeo have made a demonstration system available for users to get a feel for what a semantic engine can achieve.

  • Giving Back To Open Source

    And recently, I became aware of the debt I owe to the Open Source movement. Open Source software freed my PC and turned it into a sleek, fast, secure, stable and powerful machine. I feel I owe much to Open Source software.

  • Open Source Software is “coming of age”: Accenture

    Showing how seriously OSS is now being taken at management level, nearly two thirds of the respondents said that their organisations now have a documented strategy for open source adoption with the remaining 32 percent currently developing a strategic plan.

  • Events

  • Web Browsers

    • Chrome reaches second birthday, version 6 goes stable

      Google recently demonstrated some highly experimental tab features that offer insight into how Chrome tabbing might eventually be enhanced. Compared to something like Mozilla’s Panorama feature, Google says it wants to create something more automatic that doesn’t require much user intervention.

    • Two years on, Chrome reshapes browser market
    • Mozilla

      • Meet Kerim Kalamujic, Bosnian Contributor!

        1. Hello Kerim. To start out with, could you give us a little introduction and tell us a little bit about you?

        Hi. I was born in Sarajevo, the capital of Bosnia and Herzegovina. I am 25 years old, I have an Engineer’s degree in Telecommunications and am currently working as an IT Director in a local company called Triland Development.

      • Mozilla’s Bespin becomes Skywriter

        The project is now to be officially hosted on GitHub to allow developers to fork the project more easily. Previously, Skywriter was officially hosted using Mercurial which led to developers only installing Mercurial for access to Bespin and the creation of unofficial mirrors. The new GitHub repository is a work in progress though as it will only contain an “all JavaScript” version of the Skywriter system, and that is currently incomplete. The older bespinclient Mercurial repository is being kept open for now to give developers access to “something that works today”. The project also has a new home page on Mozilla Labs reflecting the name change.

  • SaaS

  • Oracle

    • Gosling Webcast

      Next week JavaZone, the conference that brought you Lady Java and Java Forever will be held in Norway. To celebrate the opening of the new ForgeRock Norway office, we’ve arranged for a party just before the conference starts, on Tuesday evening. If you are in Oslo and would like to attend, please send an RSVP to the address on the web site.

    • Does the Fate of OpenSolaris Tell Us Where Unix Is Headed?

      It’s not easy to pin down the exact date of the birth of OpenSolaris, but it’s really easy to nail the date of its demise: Friday, August 13, 2010. This was the date a leaked Oracle internal memo was released on the Internet: a memo that effectively announced the end of the OpenSolaris Project, just over five years after the general release of the OpenSolaris code and 830 days after the first official release of an OpenSolaris distribution from Sun Microsystems.

    • An obituary for Larry Ellison

      I’m tired of hearing questions about the future of Java, OpenOffice and MySQL (to limit myself to only three projects), and even more tired of trying to talk to people with whom I have contact in Oracle and always hear the same history (invest more and do better), that simply doesn’t translate into any concrete action. I’m tired of living in a world of uncertainty and rumors in this area.

  • CMS

  • Education

    • New course management program to replace WebCT

      EduCat is powered by an open source course system called Moodle, a software package for creating internet-based courses and websites. NMU is switching because the vendor that supports WebCT will no longer be licensing the software, said Smock. NMU’s license with WebCT expires in July 2011.

  • Healthcare

    • Open health in Guatemala

      The FreeMED Software Foundation has been involved with a medical clinic and teaching project in Guatemala for some time. The project, hosted by Pop-Wuj, a non-profit Spanish language school in Xela (Quetzeltenango), Guatemala, hosts a medical clinic for the poor in the city and surrounding pueblos.

    • EU: 3.3 Million To Continue Projects On Open Source And Reusable Data

      The European Commission is planning to spend 3.344 million Euro until 2016 to continue the services provided by its projects – such as OSOR.eu and Semic.eu – on open source and on electronic data exchange.

      The EC published the budget details last week Thursday for its e-Government project. Apart from the 3.344 million Euro planned for the new platform to provide collaborative services for current Semic.eu and OSOR.eu users, another 8.8 million Euro are foreseen to provide support for existing and future communities around eGovernment in general, including the growing Open Source community on OSOR.eu and the community around interoperablity assets on Semic.eu.

    • Medical FLOSS Repository: An update from Medfloss.org
  • BSD

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

    • Only one day left to influence the EURO 2012 qualification games

      As it is common in football since some time to bribe the referee, this is also possible: Just transfer the money to FSFE’s bank account with the subject “donation for Free Software European championship [Country name]” and announce your bribery via microblog with the above mentioned hashtag ;)

  • Project Releases

  • Openness/Sharing

Leftovers

  • Game-addicted man scores rare win over software lawyers

    Craig Smallwood sued Lineage II maker NC Interactive late last year, claiming that his compulsive urge to play the game caused him to sink more than 20,000 hours into it. As a result, he had to be hospitalized and continues to suffer extreme and serious emotional distress and depression that requires treatment and therapy three times a week, according to court documents.

  • Lawyer sues Avvo for libel after receiving poor online rating

    A Florida lawyer has sued Avvo for libel, arguing that the Seattle online attorney rating service published inaccurate information about him and engaged in a practice of blackmail in order to get him to participate on the site. Larry Joe Davis Jr., a St. Petersburg lawyer who has a 3.7 rating on Avvo, argues in the suit that the site inaccurately listed him as having a practice in the “employment/labor” area when in fact he specializes in health law. He also alleges that Avvo engaged in unfair acts of trade or commerce.

  • Security/Aggression

    • Security hole found in top price-comparison sites

      While sites such as Confused.com and Comparethemarket.com might save you time and money, the true cost could be higher than you think courtesy of a basic flaw when it comes to securing customers’ personal data.

    • Kirklees Council ban future use of Mosquito device on council land and property

      A DEVICE which targets young people has been banned following a campaign by junior politicians.

    • United Airlines and Dulles security treat Pakistani military officers as terrorists

      The officers were on a junket in the USA, and had been travelling extensively; one of them said words to the effect of, “I hope this is my last flight.” This was interpreted as a terrorist threat by a flight attendant.

    • Sneaky Senate Trying To Slip Internet Kill Switch Past Us

      Sensing Senators don’t have the stomach to try and pass a stand-alone bill in broad daylight that would give the President the power to shut down the Internet in a national emergency, the Senate is considering attaching the Internet Kill Switch bill as a rider to other legislation that would have bi-partisan support.

    • Hardware hackers defeat quantum crypto

      Security researchers using hardware hacking techniques have unearthed generic flaws in supposedly ultra-secure quantum cryptography systems.

    • German “secure” ID cards compromised on national TV, gov’t buries head in sand

      A German TV programme showed hackers from the Chaos Computer Club using off-the-shelf equipment to extract personal information from the government’s new “secure” ID card, which stores scans of fingerprints and a six-digit PIN that can be used to sign official documents and declarations.

    • Drumroll, please: the top Web scams of the decade

      Good to know that there are so many people out there who care. But better to know what the most common scams look like. Here is security vendor Panda’s new list of the biggest Web scams of the decade.

    • New malware detects browser, shows fake malware warning page

      Microsoft is warning about a new piece of malware, Rogue:MSIL/Zeven, that auto-detects a user’s browser and then imitates the relevant malware warning pages from Internet Explorer, Firefox, or Chrome. The fake warning pages are very similar to the real thing; you have to look closely to realize they aren’t the real thing. The ploy is a basic social engineering scheme, but in this case the malware authors are relying on the user’s trust in their browser, a tactic that hasn’t been seen before.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

  • Finance

    • Former Lehman CEO: It’s Not Our Fault We Went Bankrupt

      Lehman Brothers’ bankruptcy had nothing to do with Lehman Brothers, according to Dick Fuld, Lehman Brothers’ former CEO.

      Instead, Fuld argued at a public hearing today, Lehman went bust because the financial world wrongly lost confidence in the bank, and the government failed to effectively intervene.

    • Lehman Brothers ex-CEO Wants Everyone To Know That It Was Everyone Else’s Fault Lehman Failed

      In fact, a recent report from Planet Money and Pro Publica, that came out just last week, showed how ridiculous levels of self-dealing among banks not only prolonged the mess, but actually made the eventual impact much, much worse. Basically the banks created fake demand for the very worst parts of the mortgage-backed securities they were trying to sell, in order to keep on selling.

    • Goldman employees still enamored with firm, CEO

      Goldman Sachs Group Inc (GS.N) is the bank many Americans love to hate, but one group just plain loves it: its employees.

      The firm’s employees are among the most fiercely loyal in the financial services industry, according to a survet by glassdoor.com, a career website. And Goldman Chief Executive Lloyd Blankfein had the highest approval rating of any CEO in the financial sector.

      Glassdoor.com’s survey was done online, which means it is not exactly scientific, but any good news is surely welcome at Goldman, which is fresh off settling civil fraud charges with U.S. securities regulators. The lawsuit set off a public relations nightmare that led some inside the bank to question whether Blankfein should be ousted.

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • Announcing our new Online Director

      He comes to us from Harvard University’s Berkman Center for Internet & Society. Joey brings extensive experience from a range of online activist efforts, including the T. Boone Pickens alternative energy campaign, and an in-depth knowledge and understanding of how to use technology to galvanize and engage a community. He will lead our digital grassroots efforts towards change in Washington.

  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

    • Google’s Earth

      Science fiction never imagined Google, but it certainly imagined computers that would advise us what to do. HAL 9000, in “2001: A Space Odyssey,” will forever come to mind, his advice, we assume, eminently reliable — before his malfunction. But HAL was a discrete entity, a genie in a bottle, something we imagined owning or being assigned. Google is a distributed entity, a two-way membrane, a game-changing tool on the order of the equally handy flint hand ax, with which we chop our way through the very densest thickets of information. Google is all of those things, and a very large and powerful corporation to boot.

    • Murdoch Reporters’ Phone-Hacking Was Endemic, Victimized Hundreds

      A phone-hacking scheme involving British royals and reporters working for one of Rupert Murdoch’s tabloid newspapers went far beyond what was previously disclosed and prosecuted, according toThe New York Times.

      Andy Coulson, currently media advisor to British Prime Minister David Cameron, is accused of having encouraged the hacking during his tenure as editor of Murdoch’s News of the World paper.

    • Don’t Let Schools Chip Your Kids

      On Tuesday, preschoolers in Richmond, California showed up for school and were handed jerseys embedded with Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) tags. RFID tags are tiny computer chips that are frequently used to track everything from cattle to commercial products moving through warehouses. Now the school district is apparently hoping to use these chips to replace manual attendance records, track the children’s movements at school and during field trips, and collect other data like whether the child has eaten or not.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • Scam Artists Use HADOPI to Steal Users Money

        News has surfaced that warning letters, allegedly from HADOPI, are being sent to an untold number of French citizens who are accused of copyright infringement. The problem? Neither HADOPI nor rights holders actually sent those e-mails.

      • Introduction to “three strikes” copyright infringement rules in Dragon*con EFF track

        Distribution of digital content has only gotten easier over time. In the early years of web sharing, distribution happened over the client-server system. The more people using it, the slower the system was. But now with peer-to-peer (P2P) sharing, speeds and access actually increase with a greater number of users. Trammell demonstrated with the following list, a history of how, since P2P arrived, the two big players in the fight against sharing, the RIAA (Recording Industry of America) and MPAA (Motion Picutre Association of America), have fought it:

        * 1999 – RIAA labels sued Napster
        * 2002 – RIAA sued Aimster
        * 2003 – MPAA studios sued Grokster
        * 2006 – RIAA labels sued the developers of LimeWire

        [...]

        The Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (which has its own session for discussion at Dragon*Con) is an international treaty to create standards for IP rights enforcement. It’s supposed to be a response to the increase in pirated works and is a framework for companies to voluntarily join outside of WTO, WIPO, and the UN. It’s also held in secret. Many in the US have sent FOIA requests seeking transparency. There have been leaks and a condensed version that have come out. And earlier this year, they confirmed that mandatory graduated response for signing companies is off the table.

      • ORGCon: James Boyle Interview

        In this video James speaks to Open Rights Group volunteer Nitya Rajan about the importance of the public domain, and why it should be treated with care and respect.

      • Settlement reached after judge refuses to dismiss copyright suit

        U.S. District Judge Philip Pro rejected a defendant’s argument that the case should be dismissed because Righthaven didn’t own the copyright to the story at the time of the alleged infringement.

      • Copyrighting Fashion: Who Gains?
      • Media Minutes: September 3, 2010

        Latinos for Internet Freedom, a new coalition of more than 40 organizations and groups, is advocating for an open and accessible Internet. And bloggers and nonprofits are now targets of a “lawsuit mill” that shakes down people for big sums of money for sharing articles and links.

      • iTunes song-sample plan runs into music publishers
      • LVRJ Defends Righthaven Suits; Mocks Competitor For Highlighting Problems With Them
      • Why we are writing about the R-J copyright lawsuits

        Some commentators are wondering why the Las Vegas Sun, and our sister publication In Business Las Vegas, have published so many stories about the Las Vegas Review-Journal/Righthaven LLC copyright infringement lawsuit campaign.

        Are we covering the R-J/Righthaven lawsuits, which through Monday totaled 107 complaints against defendants throughout the United States and Canada, because they involve our competitor?

        Because we’ve reported criticism of Righthaven by defense attorneys and others, do the Sun and In Business condone and encourage copyright infringement?

        And as I’ve been the writer of most of these stories, one reader said it appears I’m “outraged” by Righthaven and asked me if that was the case.

      • ACTA

Clip of the Day

Physicist Leonard Mlodinow vs. Deepak Chopra


Credit: TinyOgg

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