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05.19.10

Links 19/5/2010: Fedora 13 is Near, Linux Mint 9 is Out

Posted in News Roundup at 1:23 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Kitchen appliance seller goes Asterisk for UC roll-out

    The company selected a Digium Switchvox IP-PABX for the project which replaced an ageing Samsung OfficeServ 500. The Switchvox appliance runs the open source Asterisk software on Linux.

  • Still no Mac, Linux support for ATO’s e-tax

    The 2010 version of the Australian Taxation Office’s (ATO) online tax return software will support Windows 7, but not Mac or Linux operating systems.

    Since the e-tax software was introduced in 1999, it has been compatible only with Microsoft’s operating systems.

  • What price can you put on a user community?

    One advantage of the Cell was its ability to run Linux without dramatic changes to the code base: the standard Linux kernel now supports the Cell as one it its architectures.

    The Cell’s ability to run Linux combined with Sony providing the “Install Other OS” feature with its PS3 software gave birth to a niche community of PS3 users – the Linux user community.

    I remember at the last Linux.conf.au to be held in Sydney (January 2007), a few IBMers proudly had a PS3 running Linux on display.

    Unlike the Xbox and Wii, the PS3 and its Linux option was seen as “geeky” and “more than just a game console”. And it wasn’t long before mainstream Linux distributors (Fedora comes to mind) started providing full Linux-based OS options for the PC – graphical interface and full-on “desktop” apps.

  • Softpedia Linux Weekly, Issue 97
  • StrandVision Offers Preconfigured Linux Point-of-Display Digital Signage Player

    When using the StrandVision Linux Player, users simply connect the large format display to the VGA or HDMI output on the player, connect the unit to the Internet and enter their username and password. The Linux player automatically finds and logs onto the StrandVision service in the Cloud and after initializing the system, begins the signage playback.

  • Michigan Career Training School Launches Certified Nurse Aide & Linux Systems Administrator Programs

    Career Quest, an established career training school in Michigan, announces the launch of two new programs at their Lansing, Mich. facility. Starting this session, Career Quest will offer a Certified Nurse Aide program as well as a Linux Systems Administration training program.

  • Server

  • Ballnux

    • A Close Look at Samsung’s Wave

      There is a certain degree of interest and anticipation for this latest touch screen smart phone from the Korean based phone manufacturer, Samsung. The Wave smart phone presents two new major innovations from Samsung; the new open source, Linux based Bada operating system (which will be the first OS that Samsung has developed) as well as the new super AMOLED touch screen technology -has been confirmed to also appear in various upcoming devices from Samsung.

    • HTC

  • Kernel Space

  • Applications

    • TestPlant updates eggPlant for Linux

      The new release also features a new TypeText recording feature that allows you to automatically capture most keyboard input, including modifier keys, by just typing. New SenseTalk features expand eggPlant’s text handling and provide more options for value comparisons. Improved Control over helper suites and enhancements to the case and bug submission panel allows version 10.2 of this universal GUI test tool to bring with it key features that reduce the learning and deployment curve of the tool thus significantly helping QA engineers who are new to automation.

    • Spotify Still Missing Two Essential Features

      This means that if you have a Linux desktop computer, you’re out of the picture (ed : we know that Spotify works under Wine but they have yet to announce any Native clients).

    • Proprietary

      • Wine 1.2 Planned For Release In June

        Wine 1.0 was released in June of 2008 after this free software project had already been in development since 1993. Over the past two years since that release we have continued to receive bi-weekly development snapshots, but no major stable releases have yet arrived. Fortunately, it looks like that soon may change with the release of Wine 1.2 as soon as next month.

      • Download Wine 1.0.1 / 1.1.44 Free For Linux
      • Google Chrome 6 Is Here

        As expected, the latest dev channel release is now labeled Google Chrome 6. The Google Chrome 6.0.401.1 dev release is just a regular update, fixing several bugs on all supported platforms, Windows, Mac and Linux. No new features have been added since the previous dev channel release, Google Chrome 5.0.396.0. The update fixes some issues with how Chrome handles the shortened addresses displayed in the Omnibox.

      • Google begins Chrome 6 development
      • HDS improves network performance monitor

        IT Operations Analyzer is aimed at mid-sized companies, is an agent-less heterogeneous application with root-cause analysis capabilities that watches Windows, Red Hat Linux networks, and, with v 2.0, SUSE Linux and Sun Solaris-connected servers, switches and storage devices.

      • Eclipse and Embedded Linux Support Added to MathWorks Code Generation Tools

        MathWorks today announced that its Target Support Package and Embedded IDE Link products now support the Eclipse integrated development environment (IDE) and Embedded Linux through the GNU compiler tool chain. As a result, engineers can automate project creation in Eclipse and deploy real-time embedded systems on Linux using automatically generated code from MATLAB and Simulink models. These capabilities enable engineers using Model-Based Design to rapidly implement and verify algorithms on processors that can run Embedded Linux, such as ARM, Freescale, and Intel.

    • Instructionals

    • Games

      • Playing Popular Windows Games in Linux Becomes Easier

        One of the reasons why Linux can never catch up to Windows is its inability to play mainstream, popular games. Linux is powerful, safe, and secure. But Windows PCs are preferred specially by the gaming crowd. I’ve been a user of Linux, and I know that Linux has plenty of games. What these people usually mean is that it doesn’t have their favorite Windows games – but now, that’s changing.

        For years now, it has been possible to play selected popular Windows games on Linux via Wine. But one can never run these games natively, unless a proper port to Linux is available.

  • Distributions

    • New Releases

      • Slackware 13.1 RC1 Is Here

        With the release of the Slackware 13.1 Release Candidate 1, the latest update to the oldest supported Linux distro in existence is now very close. Slackware 13.1 RC1 comes less than a couple of weeks since the first beta launch and is mostly a bug-fixing release, though it comes with some updated packages as well.

      • Toorox 05.2010 Comes with KDE SC 4.4.3

        Toorox 05.2010 has been released, the latest update to the Gentoo-based, LiveCD distro. It brings an updated Linux kernel and the latest KDE SC 4.4.3, as well as other changes and bug fixes. All remaining legacy KDE3 packages have been removed, but other than that, there’ aren’t any new features. 32-bit and 64-bit versions of Toorox 05.2010 are being made available.

    • Fedora

      • The five best things coming in Fedora 13 Linux

        When Fedora 13, Goddard, is released on May 25, it’s not going to be your usual Fedora Linux release. In the past, Fedora has been seen as a great Linux distribution for Linux experts. Paul W. Frields, the Fedora Project leader, told me though that this release is more new-user-friendly and that is no longer just for experienced Linux users. Based on my early look at this Red Hat community Linux distribution, I agree.

        You will be able to see it for yourself soon. After several delays, Frields has no doubt that this time, the Fedora final will be available for download soon. Frields explained to me that the delays were because Fedora has adopted much more “detailed and fleshed-out release criteria. In the past, we would release releases when it felt right. Now, we have criteria that make the process both more transparent to the community and provide strong release guidelines.”

      • QA: Fedora Project Lead Paul Frields on the “Grown Up” Distro

        Henry Kingman today shares with the Linux.com community his exclusive interview with Fedora Project Leader Paul Frields. Frields goes into detail on the upcoming Fedora 13 release, his decision to transition out of the Project Leader position and how many contributors to Fedora are being paid by Red Hat, among many other topics. Grab a cup of coffee for this in-depth discussion.

      • Download Fedora 12 Free
      • Linpus Linux Powered eMachines Hit Indian Market

        eMachines is bringing the most aggressive mobile computing solution that exists in the market today. It enables to make the dream of owning a laptop a reality for the average Indian consumer. This Notebook from eMachines, is one of the most economical Core i3 based laptops available in the market today. eMachines730, with its dual tone refreshing design, is the best option in terms of price-performance ratio, as it offers the most competitive prices in the market for the specifications incorporated.

    • Linux Mint

      • Linux Mint 9 ‘Isadora’

        Based on Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx, Linux 2.6.32, Gnome 2.30 and Xorg 7.4, Linux Mint 9 “Isadora” features a lot of improvements and the latest software from the Open Source World.

        Featured improvements in this release: 30,000 applications catalogued and reviewable both online and in the new software manager, brand new incremental backup tool for both data and software selection, menu transparency and editable items, USB and Windows installers, 3 years support, look & feel improvements.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Fit-PC2i Turbo

      Other hardware configurations are the Fit-PC2i, which has 1GB of RAM and no on-board flash and comes either diskless (£299), with Ubuntu Linux (£340) or with Windows XP Professional (£379).

    • Viewsonic VMP74 1080p media player

      Review For most of this century, I’ve evangelised home movie set-ups that put a lightweight, probably Linux-based player in the living room, leaving your multimedia libraries on a server at the other end of your network.

    • Cavium Unveils Processors, Receive Support from MontaVista Software

      MontaVista CGE carrier grade Linux is widely used in telecom, networking and wireless applications and is said to be the only Linux to meet CGL 4.0, LSB 3.0 and IPv6 specifications and provide virtual routing and forwarding capabilities. With MontaVista’s support for Cavium processors the CGE Linux can run on OCTEON II processors and offer a combination of value, performance, and reliability in data center, mobile internet and borderless enterprise market segments.

    • Datalight Shares Reliable Method for Bootstrapping Linux from NAND

      Today Datalight unveiled a new whitepaper describing details of the company’s process for booting an embedded Linux system directly from NAND flash.

    • Use Linux to water your lawn

      So you bought the EasyBloom to take precise soil moisture readings. You have a spreadsheet plotting plant growth over time. But you’re still schelpping out to water the lawn like all your Luddite neighbors. Where’s your sense of pride? You’re a geek! You should be using technology to make your life better. Here, we’ll help get you started with this Instructable on using Linux to water your lawn!

    • User guide to software for avionics systems

      Linux

      Linux is now an option many project managers for aerospace and defence applications and companies such as Honeywell have already deployed in space-borne systems.

      For deployments where security is a concern, the US National Security Agency (NSA) has developed a Security-Enhanced Linux (SE-Linux), a set of Linux security features that provide a variety of security policies, including US Department of Defense–style mandatory access control through the use of Linux Security Modules (LSMs) for the open source Linux kernel.

      SE-Linux is not a Linux distribution but a set of security modifications (patches) that can be applied to any Linux or UNIX operating system.

      Traditionally, Linux scheduling and interrupt performance, although quite adequate for enterprise and desktop systems, was not very deterministic and had a wide variance over changing system conditions in embedded environments. This made Linux unsuitable for use in traditional embedded systems that demand microsecond response times.

      But two advances have changed this situation: a modification of the Linux core, named PREEMPT_RT, and a fast, deterministic scheduler inside the Linux system, named Real-Time Core for Linux.

    • Mentor Graphics and NetLogic Microsystems Establish Strategic Multi-Core Collaboration for Embedded Linux

      NetLogic Microsystems will provide the Mentor-developed Linux solution to multi-core developers to enable them to create innovative applications for high-performance multi-core processors targeted at next-generation enterprise, telecom and data center networks.

    • NAS

      • Two-bay NAS offers AES encryption

        Synology America announced a two-bay, Linux-based networked-attached storage (NAS) device for the SMB market, integrating a 256-bit AES hardware encryption engine. The DiskStation DS210+ can hold up to 4TB of internal storage, consumes 30 Watts, and includes the new Synology DiskStation Manager 2.3 software, with improved RAID setup and security features.

      • Synology unveils speedier DS210+ NAS server
    • Android

    • Sub-notebooks

      • Got Apps? Get accelerated.

        In a move aimed at bringing more applications to the Intel AppUp Center Beta program, Intel announced the launch of Accelerator 2010 as part of its Intel Atom Developer Program Million Dollar Development Fund. The AppUp Center is a repository for applications designed specifically for Intel Atom-processor based netbooks, and Accelerator 2010 will be used to fund companies interested in developing new and inventive ways to use netbooks.

      • Acer Denies Chrome OS Netbook Coming at Computex

        Acer has officially denied rumors that said it would show its first netbooks running Chrome OS at the upcoming Computex show in Taipei next month. The denial comes a few days after Acer spokespeople earlier declined to comment on the rumors, which first appeared on the tech business blog VentureBeat.

        [...]

        Google is also working on a netbook version of the Android operating system as well, and Acer has committed to an Android netbook, so it had been unclear how the PC maker would have differentiated between an Android netbook and Chrome OS netbook. For Google’s part, at least, the search leader’s co-founder, Sergey Brin, has said that eventually, Google plans to converge Android and Chrome OS into a single platform for netbooks.

      • No Chrome OS netbook from Acer at Computex
      • In Ubuntu 10.10 Netbook Edition Firefox can be replaced with Google Chrome

        We have already reported on the leading companies Canonical formulation of a new operating system Ubuntu 10.10 Netbook Edition. This software platform, in accordance with its name, is intended for use in compact notebooks with small display and energy-efficient processors, known as netbooks.

      • Linkbook a good beginning

        Millions of Africans will experience the Internet – do a search, get e-mail, see YouTube or just browse a website – for the first time on their cellphones.

    • Tablets

      • Dell CEO confirms Streak Android tablet for Europe next month

        During his keynote speech yesterday at the the Citrix Synergy conference, Dell founder and CEO Michael Dell confirmed that the company’s Streak Android-based tablet, formerly known as the Mini 5 tablet, will be available in Europe next month from mobile phone carrier Telefonica O2, which offers service in the UK, Ireland, Germany, the Czech Republic and Slovakia. Mr Dell also added that it would be available from the GSM carrier AT&T in the US “later this summer”.

      • Ipad Operating Function

        The huge problem is that there is no multithreading technology. This means that your $600+ tablet computer can only run one application at a time just like your iPhone. For some who like multitasking while using a computer this is a big let down. Even the cheapest sub $300 netbooks running Linux can handle multiple applications at one time and that hardware is quite a bit less powerful than what the iPad has. One can expect though since this is the first version.

      • What Slate Makers Need To Do To Succeed

        At CES2010 the “Year of the Tablet” was ushered right as the new year was beginning. There were promises of Tablet/Slates promised in just about every flavor you could imagine. All of this with this news that Apple was going to release its iPad lurking just around the corner.

      • Kno to Unveil its Dual Screen Linux Tablet in June

        Boy you just can’t have enough of Tablet news for a day. This time, we won’t be talking about an iPad Tablet for a change. A startup tablet designer named Kakai has announced that it will be unveiling its dual screen tablet on 2nd June at the D8 conference.

    • WebOS

Free Software/Open Source

  • Maddog Editorial: Reusable Code and What It Means to Your Company

    Companies have, in the past, assumed that all the code written by their programmers had widespread value to their customers and protected it all under the mantle of closed source, releasing the code as “open source” only when there was a strong business case to make it “open.” Often the proof of open source value was very arduous, and therefore not often pursued. Perhaps it is time to reverse the practice and make every piece of code open source, unless there is a demonstrated business reason to keep it closed. Then more programmers can stop re-inventing the wheel.

  • Mozilla

  • Databases

    • Get to know FB in 2 minutes – now available in 18 languages

      The introductory paper “Get to know Firebird in 2 minutes” is now available in 18 different languages! Thanks for all the translators who contributed.

    • PostgreSQL developers fix vulnerabilities

      PostgreSQL 7 and 8 users are advised to update their installations as the development team has released new versions which fix a vulnerability classed as moderately severe in PL/perl and PL/tcl. CVE-2010-1169, CVE-2010-1447 and CVE-2010-1170 reports detail the vulnerabilities involved. The changes include the removal of the Safe.pm module, which acted as a kind of sandbox for Perl programs. Instead, PostgreSQL code now includes a hard-wired list of permissible Perl operators. According to the release notes, one side effect of this is that stored procedures written in Perl now compile more quickly.

  • CMS

    • Joomla 1.6 Beta Ships

      The Joomla Project has announced the release of the beta of version 1.6 of the open-source Joomla content management system.

  • Programming

    • What’s New in Python 2.7

      This article explains the new features in Python 2.7. The final release of 2.7 is currently scheduled for July 2010; the detailed schedule is described in PEP 373.

Leftovers

  • Environment

    • Five-Day Volcanic Ash Charts

      These charts indicate the forecast position of the volcanic ash cloud at 1200 GMT each day for the next five days for the altitudes indicated. It must be stressed that the five day charts are based on observed volcanic activity at the time of issue and should be regarded as indicative only.

  • Finance

    • German trading curbs hit markets hard

      World markets dropped sharply Wednesday after Germany’s new curbs on traders – a unilateral and unexpected attempt to reduce volatility in financial markets – unsettled investors.

      The euro, meanwhile, recovered from four-year lows against the dollar – reached in the aftermath of the ban – as experts suggest European central banks are considering intervening in the markets to slow the currency’s drop. The European Central Bank declined to comment.

    • EU Commission urges joint action on short-selling

      EU countries should act jointly to regulate so-called naked short-selling of shares and investments to reduce volatilty in financial markets, the European Commission said Wednesday.

    • Katie Bar The Door

      Those 10,000 US cities, and all the counties and states they find themselves in, are -all but a precious few- at the end of their financial rope. All but a few have voted in ridiculously rosy budgets, and now they see their revenues tank. Some will install sneaky speed traps to increase revenues, others will try to raise property taxes on homes plunging in value. All will fail to restore a sound budget. Millions of government workers will be laid off nationwide, which all by itself guarantees further declines in revenue. Which will lead to more lay-offs, all of which will lead to further drops in real estate prices, which lowers tax revenues etc. You have to admit one thing: it’s not a terribly hard storyline to follow. It couldn’t be easier if you had seen this film before.

      [...]

      The US Treasury announces a $1.6 billion loss on a loan to Chrysler, GM announces an $865 million creative accounting profit because it wants investors (who’ll be sure taxpayers’ dough will support them all), and Obama announces a commission that will investigate how the Gulf of Mexico became one huge dead zone.

    • An Interview With Joseph Stiglitz — Regulation and the Euro Zone

      Joseph Stiglitz: The problem on Wall Street is that we had bought into the idea that money is everything, and that the metric of whether you are doing well for the economy is how much money you were making for yourself. To me there were two very serious moral failings. One is that so much energy went into exploiting the poorest Americans; selling them houses they knew were beyond their ability to pay, with mortgages that were exploitive. There were people who called themselves mortgage brokers supposedly looking for the best mortgage, but in fact were looking for the worst mortgage. The whole hosts of mortgages that are designed to maximize fees basically rob the poorest people of all their life savings. The irony was that the financial markets were hoisted on their own petard, as I point out in my book. That is to me, one of the most serious moral failings on the part of the financial markets. The second is while Bernie Madoff represented a pyramid scheme engaging in illegal activity, much of what the financial markets were doing was perhaps legal, but clearly unethical, or borderline. That the financial markets did not seem to see much distinction is a severe criticism. A good example is what Goldman Sachs did; how they sold products that they knew were bad, so bad that they were actually selling them short, betting on the fact that they would lose money. The whole debate in their mind is whether what they did was legal or not. The unanimity that it was immoral that they did not disclose to the buyers that they thought these were so crappy that they were going to lose money on them and the fact that they see nothing wrong with that suggests that they live in a parallel universe, a different world, a different moral compass than the rest of society.

    • Workers asked to return bonuses after 16 years

      About 180 county employees in suburban Atlanta are being asked to return thousands of dollars the county says they were overpaid 16 years ago.

    • Unhinged: When Concrete Reality No Longer Matters to the Market (and What to Do About It)

      A recent government suit alleges that Goldman Sachs colluded with a billionaire short seller, John Paulson, to defraud investors and “construct a package of mortgage linked derivatives designed to blow up” so Paulson could make a fortune.

    • Goldman’s Trading Advice To Clients Has Been HORRIBLE This Year

      Goldman isn’t taking directional bets on Chinese stocks on the zloty. And it can’t tell its clients to become a bank, borrow from the Fed and lend long.

    • Clients Worried About Goldman’s Dueling Goals

      As the housing crisis mounted in early 2007, Goldman Sachs was busy selling risky, mortgage-related securities issued by its longtime client, Washington Mutual, a major bank based in Seattle.

    • Senate Republicans Call Reform Bill a ‘Takeover’ of the Banking Industry

      Senate Republican leaders on Tuesday unleashed a barrage of criticism at the far-reaching financial regulatory legislation being debated on the Senate floor, indicating that many of the party’s leaders were prepared to vote against the bill.

    • Financial regulation bill gets last-minute amendment from Sen. Chris Dodd

      Dodd offered a clever Washington solution aimed to appease both friends and foes of the provision. His amendment preserves the tough language — but it postpones any action for two years so it can be studied. And it assigns that study to a new council of regulators, headed by Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner, whose members have serious reservations about such a dramatic measure and may very well kill it in the end.

    • Finally, The Republicans Come Out To Fight. Where Is The President?

      This is a defining issue for the president. Either he takes up the Volcker Rule – proposed by his administration, to great fanfare (and some skepticism) in January. Or he rolls over – admitting that Wall Street has won.

    • SEC proposes rules to prevent another ‘flash crash’

      Twelve days after the stock market took a historic plunge that raised fears of another financial crisis, federal officials are still struggling to understand what went wrong even as they offer proposals for how to avoid another “flash crash.”

    • Treasury announces Wells Fargo warrant auction

      The government says it will auction 110.3 million warrants it received from Wells Fargo & Co. as part of its effort to recoup the costs of the $700 billion financial bailout.

  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

    • George Donnelly freed from federal captivity

      Libertarians responded fast and forcefully to the illegal abuse of Donnelly. Not only were his actions clearly within his human and Constitutional rights but a Department of Homeland Security document makes it clear that taking photos on federal property is not illegal.

    • Thailand protests: army prepares to storm redshirts’ camp

      On the fourth day of bloodshed the Thai government orders all women and children to leave the protesters’ camp before a final army offensive

      [...]

      Thailand’s worsening political conflict faces a new deadline, with the government ordering all women and children to leave the redshirts’ camp in central Bangkok by 3pm tomorrow before a final offensive to forcibly remove anybody remaining.

      Bloodshed continued for a fourth day, with 31 people killed since Thursday in battles between anti-government protesters and soldiers.

    • “Murdered” Chinese man reappears after 10 years

      A Chinese man who was supposedly hacked to death in a fight has reappeared in his hometown after 10 years, state media said, raising questions about police torture to extract a confession from the alleged killer.

    • Noam Chomsky barred by Israelis from lecturing in Palestinian West Bank

      Chomsky said he was disappointed and surprised to have been turned back from the Allenby bridge across the Jordan river, which is understood to be the first time he has been refused entry by the Israelis. He had been due to give a series of lectures on domestic and foreign policy at Birzeit University and the Institute for Palestine Studies in Ramallah, in the West Bank.

Clip of the Day

NASA Connect: Planetary Landers (2/11/2002)


05.18.10

Links 18/5/2010: Linux 2.6.34 is Out, Desktop Summit 2011 Extends Deadline

Posted in News Roundup at 5:41 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • SouthEast LinuxFest announce more speakers
  • Linuxcare returns with focus in the cloud

    Back in Linux’s early days, Linuxcare emerged as the first important Linux support company. In 1998, the company made headlines not just in the technology press but in mainstream business publications like the Wall Street Journal as the company that would help businesses switch over to Linux. It was not to last. Poor top management decisions led Linuxcare to lose first its way, and, then, years later, to quietly vanish. Now, one of its founders, Arthur F. Tyde III, has brought Linuxcare back from the grave and made it ready for the 21st century.

    [...]

    In a statement, Dr. Scott S. Elliott, Linuxcare CEO, explained that since “Many companies are moving their IT to Cloud computing providers such as Amazon Web Services in order to reduce expenses for capital equipment, buildings, utilities, and supporting manpower.” We have built Linuxcare in the Cloud to provide scalable services such as helping clients set-up, configure and debug their open-source applications, including Linux, Joomla, SugarCRM, and many others.”

  • Weekend Project: Transition to IPv6

    The Linux Kernel and Utilities

    The Linux kernel has supported IPv6 since the very beginning, around 1996, and has adapted to keep up with the revisions and enhancements of IPv6-related RFCs over the years. Today, virtually no Linux distribution ships a kernel that does not include the IPv6 module compiled and loaded by default. You can test for its presence in several ways, though. The simplest is to look inside the /proc/net/ directory; if /proc/net/if_inet6 (and other entries) are present, the IPv6 module is loaded. If not, you can load it with modprobe ipv6.

  • Desktop

    • Bite the Bullet

      As I have previously mentioned, a friend contacted me Friday morning with a dead laptop – major graphic hardware problems. This was a system that I had worked on before, so I knew the most likely case was that there would be no saving it this time. So I told her to bring it to me, and I would extract her data and prepare another system for her to use while she decided on a new purchase.

      My plan was to prepare my mini-ITX dual Atom 330 desktop system with the latest Ubuntu distribution (10.04, Lucid Lynx). After transfering her documents and data, she would be able to surf the web (Firefox), email (Thunderbird), and work on MS Office documents (OpenOffice.org). From experience I know that loading from scratch, transferring her data, and showing her the high points of using those programs instead of the Windows programs she was accustomed to, would take me about two hours.

    • It Never Rains but it Pours PCs

      I just chatted with a teacher working late. He wants to try GNU/Linux because he is so tired of that other OS making him wait all the time. I will bet one of these new machines will be a rocket with GNU/Linux. I am unwilling to accept the EULA, too. I accidentally got that far into one when I applied power to insert SystemRescueCD instead of using the paper-clip trick. I did some tests:

      * all the hardware works with Linux
      * full disc reads at 110MB/s average, 130 MB/s peak.
      * memory cache runs at 18 gB/s

      I am leaning towards converting these machines for GNU/Linux terminal servers on a per-classroom basis. That will give the teacher total control of the students’ processes and a power-house multimedia station all at the same time. The advantages of the students’ processes running on a 64bit machine with RAID 1 and 3gB RAM are huge. If the teacher already has an application loaded, the students’ windows will pop open in the blink of an eye. I need some network switches soon…

    • Getting a Ubuntu Laptop setup for my Mum

      As sitting in the garden while surfing the internet is way cooler than only having a dedicated computer in an office we decided to get a notebook while at it. As both Thilo and myself are very familiar with Linux, the plan was to get a Linux-compatible netbook, install Ubuntu on it, get wireless up and running, pre-configure the necessary applications and hand it over after a short usage introduction.

      [...]

      For two weeks now mom is now happy user of the Ubuntu netbook edition – step by step learning how to write e-mails, chat and use the internet. As usual first thing we tried out was searching for vacation destinations, but also for at least my name.

    • When Microsoft hardware works more easily on Ubuntu than XP

      How often have you heard the words “it’s difficult to get this software/hardware working on Linux, that’s why it hasn’t caught the mass imagination”?

      On the other hand, how often have you heard that it’s more difficult to get software/hardware working on Windows compared to Linux – but others do it for you so you aren’t exposed to the problem?

      My personal experience is more of the latter and much less of the former. The latest example I have to offer is that of hardware made by Microsoft itself – LifeChat USB audio headphones.

      A bit of background. My children have run through eight pairs of headsets in the last two years, most of them LogiTech, for one reason or the other – the sound fails, parts break, the wires come loose. Each set costs something in the region of $40 so it ain’t cheap stuff.

      Whenever any set which they are using fails, they grab the one sitting on their mother’s PC and behave as though nothing has happened. I have to then buy my wife a new set.

    • eMachines Bring Power Of Linux To India

      Acer has announced the launch of a new notebook, eME730, under its super value brand eMachines. Through its value-driven product offering from eMachines, Acer aims to address the void in the value PC segment.

      eMachines is bringing the most aggressive mobile computing solution that exists in the market today. It enables to make the dream of owning a laptop a reality for the average Indian consumer. This Notebook from eMachines, is one of the most economical Core i3 based laptops available in the market today. eMachines730, with its dual tone refreshing design, is the best option in terms of price-performance ratio, as it offers the most competitive prices in the market for the specifications incorporated.

  • Google

    • The New Browser Wars: Will Ubuntu drop Firefox for Google Chrome?
    • Clearing the air around Ubuntu and Chrome

      Reports of the popular Linux distro ditching Firefox get clarified

      Amidst reports that Ubuntu would ditch longtime default browser Firefox for Google’s Chrome browser were put to rest with a resounding “sort of.”

      [...]

      Castro was also quick to dispel any rumors that the potential browser switch was for the desktop build of Ubuntu. If Chromium is chosen, it will only affect the netbook edition of Ubuntu 10.10.

    • Good Google!

      They have the rising-stars of browsers, OS, and are stronger than ever in search and advertising.

      [...]

      At the moment, this is happening on mobile things, small mobile things. With ARM it can spill over to immobile things, too. How many hundreds of millions of people will have to know GNU/Linux and derivatives work before the monopoly is broken? My estimate is one. Why? Because everyone knows a few people so the contacts the in-folk have are just about everyone.

  • Ballnux

  • Kernel Space

    • Release

      • Linux 2.6.34 Kernel Released! Time For 2.6.35
      • Linux 2.6.34

        Nothing very interesting here, which is just how I like it. Various random fixes all over, nothing really stands out. Pretty much all of it is one- or few-liners, I think the biggest patch in the last week was fixing some semantics for the new SR-IOV VF netlink interface. And even that wasn’t a _big_ patch by any means.

      • What’s new in Linux 2.6.34

        The Nouveau driver for GeForce graphics hardware now includes everything you need to dynamically generate open source firmware for NV50 GPUs on demand, so that 8xxx, 9xxx and GTX2x0 series GeForce graphics chips will now run without the controversial ctxprogs, generated using proprietary graphics drivers.

    • File Systems

      • Linux 2.6.34 Kernel Debuts With New Filesystems

        The Linux 2.6.34 kernel is now available, delivering new filesystems to the open source operating system.

        Among the big new items included in the 2.6.34 release is the Ceph distributed filesystem and LogFS, a filesystem geared toward flash media devices. The update comes as the second major Linux kernel development of 2010 and follows the Linux 2.6.33 kernel release by just under three months.

      • Linux gains flash filesystem

        Linus Torvalds announced the release of Linux 2.6.34, which is notable for adding two filesystems: Ceph for distributed and cloud-based applications, and LogFS, which is optimized for flash-memory based devices. Other new features include a faster KVM virtualization driver based on Vhost.net technology, says LinuxPlanet.com.

      • Linux kernel 2.6.34 adds scalable Ceph filesystem

        Linus Torvalds announced this week the official release of version 2.6.34 of the Linux kernel. The update introduces two new filesystems and brings a number of other technical improvements and bug fixes.

      • Linux gets jiggy with more filesystems in 2.6.34 kernel release

        But open source software fans and vendors will be happy to see the Ceph distributed filesystem, which supports many petabytes of storage, and flash media-happy LogFS filesystem included in the 2.6.34 release of Linux.

      • A Random Btrfs Experience

        I still look forward to the promise of btrfs. I’m impressed with how far it has come, and it holds great promise. However, I just can’t see this being production-ready quite yet. At least not without heavy backups (which I can’t afford right now – at least not doing it right).

      • Article ZFS data integrity testing and more random ZFS thoughts.
    • LM_Sensors

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • Blur Effect enabled by default

      I just enabled the blur effect by default for the beta cycle. If your graphics card at least supports the extension GL_ARB_fragment_program (check with glxinfo) you should see the blur behind Plasma tooltips, etc.

    • Is GNOME or KDE Better for New Users?

      One argument I hear is how much KDE 4.x looks like OS X or Windows 7, while GNOME feels more like something from the 90′s. Out of the box, a few years ago, this might have held some truth to it.

      These days however, GNOME is highly customizable and looks very professional out of the box. Taking the experience further, you can even alter the GNOME theme in three easy clicks. Four, if you count the new theme you’ve selected.

      I also appreciate the fact that from the same three clicks, I can download ready-made themes if those provides are simply not cutting it.

    • Someone is *Wrong* On The Internet

      What prompted this thread, you might ask? Well, I was reading Michael Read’s recent KDE4: It hurt, but did it work? article, and was tickled by the fervor of the anti/pro camps surrounding the great KDE vs. Gnome debate. Did the anti-KDE flamers win over any converts to whatever was being claimed as a superior desktop environment? I doubt it. Did it make for entertaining reading? I think so.

    • K Desktop Environment (KDE SC)

      • Keynote Speaker at Akademy 2010: Aaron Seigo Interview

        In about 6 weeks the biggest yearly gathering of the KDE community starts in Tampere. To give you all a little taste of Akademy 2010, Guillermo Amaral interviewed Aaron Seigo and asked him about his keynote.

      • Desktop Summit 2011 Extends Deadline for Call for Hosts
      • KMyMoney announces release candidate for KDE platform 4

        After a year of hard work on a version for the KDE platform 4, the KMyMoney team is happy to announce the immediate availability of the first release candidate. Unlike previous versions, this one is recommended for general use. The feedback provided by previous beta releases makes us confident that it is as stable and rock-solid as previous stable versions.

      • Clementine is an attractively simple music player and organizer

        Clementine is actually a port of Amarok, one of the better music organizers for KDE and Linux. It’s still early days — they just released version 0.3 — but a core set of features and no bloat is what makes Clementine appealing! It plays music, it organizes music and it streams radio. That’s it! Sure, it also lets you scrobble to Last.fm and, yes, you download missing album art too — but these things happen in the background. It still remains a simple program with just a handful of precious, useful settings that can be changed.

  • Distributions

    • The Secret Identities of Linux Distributions

      Of the three, Ubuntu is probably the easiest to identify: most popular desktop Linux distribution. That’s a laudable goal, but right now that strong sense of identity could work against Canonical, which is also trying to position Ubuntu as a strong server platform and a cloud client. Look for a push to build some sort of meta identity for Ubuntu soon, I would expect.

    • Gentoo

    • New Releases

      • ABC GNU/Linux

        This is how the first version of ABC GNU/Linux arose, which was in trial phase by April 2009. It involves a free software-based distribution (Ubuntu), is live as well as installable, and is capable of automatically configuring a cluster of up to 254 computers. Castanos said, “100 PCs are purchased and my DVD is inserted into one of these and booted, either from the DVD or installed in the hard disk itself. This computer and the rest of the machines are connected together by a switch (a device that acts like a router). When the rest of the machines are booted, using a BIOS (basic in/out system) specifying which device is to be booted, they are told what to do by means of the network card. All are booted from the DVD itself — or the hard disk if installed — registered, and connections are created between them.”

      • Arch Linux 2010.05 arrives

        The Arch Linux developers have announced the release of the project’s official 2010.05 installation images. Arch Linux is a simple and lightweight Linux distribution for i686 and x86-64 platforms aimed at Linux users who want to create “their own ideal environment” and install only what they need.

      • Zippy, cloud-based Linux distro off to fast start

        A new fast-booting, cloud-oriented, “Peppermint OS” Ubuntu variant has been downloaded 25,000 times in its first week. Meanwhile, the Red Hat Enterprise Linux clone CentOS has been released in version 5.5, adding features such as improved KVM virtualization and expanded WiFi support, and pioneering Linux distro-maker Mandriva is up for sale.

    • Mandrake/Mandriva Family

      • More On PCLinuxOS 2010

        I am still enjoying the distribution of Linux I have currently on my laptop and it’s stability and solidness.

    • Red Hat Family

      • Red Hat’s Worldwide Middleware ISV Ecosystem Expands

        “We are seeing a growing number of customers, who want to leverage the performance and price benefits of open source middleware, request that their application vendors certify against Red Hat’s JBoss Enterprise Middleware,” said Craig Muzilla, vice president, middleware, Red Hat. “We believe that the growth of our ISV Program reflects a migration away from complex and expensive proprietary platforms towards the leading open source middleware provider, Red Hat.”

      • The End Is In Sight For RHEL 3

        It’s doubtful that anyone really likes having to upgrade, but at some point it has to be done. For those particularly adverse to the upgrade — like enterprise users, with good reason — there are extra-long windows, but eventually even those windows close. Last week, Red Hat announced that the oldest of its supported platforms has officially entered the homestretch.

      • Fedora

        • Fedora 13 – Ready to roll

          Automatic driver installations, better mobile broadband and the end of PowerPC support can be expected from Fedora 13.

          Fedora Linux, the community release of Red Hat, is putting the final touches to its latest release, Fedora 13. Codenamed “Goddard”, Fedora 13 has a number of features that will please end users as well as systems administrators. Fedora 13 also ends the relationship with PowerPC processors and now backs the KVM virtualisation system.

    • Debian Family

      • Debian-Ubuntu relationship: poll summary

        So, I’m now back and with some feedback to share. I’ll first post (in this mail) a summary of the replies I got to this “poll” and later on a more general summary of what I did at UDS.

      • Ubuntu

        • UDS Brussels: Prototype tool helps tracking kernel patches

          Steve Conklin, member of the kernel team at Canonical, wrote the patchtracker during the last couple of months, much of it in the last two weeks. The patchtracker is written in python running on the Django framework. It allows developers to locate all git branches in which a certain kernel patch found its way.

        • Ubuntu 10.10 (Maverick) Developer Summit

          The community track discussed the usual line-up of events, outreach and advocacy programs, organizational tools, and governance housekeeping for the 10.10 cycle, as well as goals for improving the translation of Ubuntu and related resources into many languages.

        • Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter Issue 193

          Welcome to the Ubuntu Weekly Newsletter, Issue #193 for the week May 9th – May 15th, 2010. In this issue we cover Ubuntu Developer Summit – Ubuntu 10.10 – Maverick Meerkat planned, Ubuntu Developer Summit -M Videos, Unity, and Ubuntu Light, A Case for Modifying the Ubuntu Release Schedule, New Default Applications In Ubuntu Netbook Edition 10.10?, Ubuntu Stats, Ubuntu DC LoCo InstallFest, Release Party In Uruguay was a Big Hit, Welcome To Ubuntu in Maryland! May 20th, Ubuntu Release Party 10.04 – Alagoas, Ubuntu Hams – Our First UDS Session was Great, Clarifications around Ubuntu using “Google Chrome”, UDS-Maverick recap, BTRFS By Default In Maverick?, Testing Ubuntu Releases, Receive Ubuntu bugs by mail with the Debian PTS, Columbia Areas Linux User Group – Featured speaker Mackenzie Morgan, In The Press, In the Blogoshpere, Canonical’s Ubuntu support scope, Commercial bug-fixes for Ubuntu, Upcoming Meetings and Events, Updates and Security, And much much more…

        • Ubuntu Maverick UDS Group Photo made with the Hugin Panorama Creator
        • Early Release Schedules For Ubuntu 11.04, 11.10, 12.04 LTS

          While the release schedules for Ubuntu Linux aren’t exactly a close secret — new releases generally coming in April and October with the version scheme being YY.MM such as Ubuntu 11.04 for the April 2011 release — Canonical’s Robbie Williamson has laid out tentative release schedules for Ubuntu 11.04, Ubuntu 11.10, and even Ubuntu 12.04 LTS.

        • Ubuntu toolbox

          Eye candy. Compiz, which brings all sorts of cool effects to your screen, is already installed with Ubuntu, but to gain greater control over how it behaves, install the settings manager (compizconfig-settings-manager in Synaptic). Also install the Emerald Theme Manager (emerald in Synaptic) so that Compiz can display fancy translucent windows. To activate Emerald after it’s installed, hit F2 and type gksu emerald—replace and hit Enter. I also create a new start-up program using the same command to make sure my fancy windows come up every time.

        • Ubuntu (w/ GNOME) Switching To Single Click For Opening Files And Folders?
        • Variants

          • Linux Mint 9 “Isadora” released!
          • Cloud-ready Peppermint OS blasts off to fast start

            A fast-booting, cloud-oriented, “Peppermint OS” Ubuntu variant has been downloaded 25,000 times in its first week. Meanwhile, Red Hat clone CentOS has been released in version 5.5, adding features including enhanced KVM virtualization and improved WiFi support, and pioneering Linux distro-maker Mandriva is up for sale.

          • Linux and Open Source: A Look at Peppermint OS, a Linux for the Masses
          • Puppy

            • Ubuntu-based Puppy Linux 5.0 arrives

              The major update, also referred to as “Lucid Puppy”, was built using the Woof build system and is based on Ubuntu 10.04 LTS Lucid Lynx binary packages. Lucid Puppy features the new Quickpet package manager which allows users to install a number of Linux programs with a single click. Available applications include the Kompozer web authoring system, GIMP for image editing and several browsers, such as Firefox, SeaMonkey, Chromium, and Opera.

            • Distro Hoppin`: Puppy Linux 5.0

              Puppy Linux is on an ever-ascending curve with every new release proving to be a must have for Linux nomads who need an Internet- and Multimedia-ready system wherever they go, without needing to sacrifice precious space on their thumb drives, nor tones of resources on the host machines. Puppy Linux 5, what a great specimen you are…

            • Puppy Linux 5.0

              Puppy Linux, in case you aren’t already familiar with it, is a lightweight version of Linux that is designed for portability.

              The .iso file of Puppy Linux 5.0 weighs in at an incredibly petite 128 MB. It’s much, much smaller than all of the usual desktop heavyweight distros. But don’t let its small size fool you, Puppy Linux 5.0 is anything but an also-ran in terms of functionality and usability.

              Puppy Linux 5.0 is built from Ubuntu Linux 10.04 (Lucid Lynx) binaries, so it’s…er…pet name is Lucid Puppy. Like a lot of other things about Puppy Linux, the name is cute and adorable. I felt like giving Puppy Linux a dog bone and a pat on the head when I started using it.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Linux on the iPhone: Status update

      I know the binaries for the iPhone 3G are taking a while. Everything is basically done and all the code I have is in the source repositories so people are free to build it for themselves. However, I wanted to improve the packaging slightly to ease installation (no longer requiring people to modify ext2 partitions). The release of the binaries (and a how-to) will be sometime within the next week.

    • Workshops tackle Qt, Linux, and i.MX development

      Future Electronics and Nokia will host six full-day, hands-on workshops across the North America on using Linux and Nokia’s Qt development framework to develop user interfaces (UIs) for Freescale’s ARM-based i.MX system-on-chips (SoCs). Starting in Boston on May 18, the workshops will use the Freescale i.MX23 SoC as its sample platform.

    • WebOS

      • Palm’s webOS installed and running on old Dell laptop

        Old used laptops are usually paired with old operating systems like Windows XP or some GNU/Linux variant. But for those of you who want to try out something completely different, check out Palm’s webOS.

        No, I have not gone crazy or fallen victim to a typo of some sort. Palm’s mobile operating system on the Pre and Pixi has been found to be capable of running on an old Dell laptop. See the image below for some introductory proof.

      • webOS up and running on PC hardware
    • Android

      • Rumor: T-Mobile ‘Project Emerald’ is Sidekick-Branded Android Product

        TmoNews and DroidDog are reporting that the phone that’s going to be part of T-Mobile’s latest initiative will actually be a Sidekick. This time around, HTC will be manufacturing the device as opposed to Sharp or Motorola. Rumored specs peg the phone with Android 2.1, a 1 GHz processor (assumed to be Snapdragon), a front-facing camera, 4.3-inch Super AMOLED display, and 16 GB of internal storage. Sounds like a pretty grown up Sidekick to us! No firm dates yet, but we’ve learned it should be ‘summer’.

      • Can Froyo 2.2 Save Linux-Based Android From Fragmentation?

        As Google prepares to kick off its annual Google I/O developer conference Wednesday, the wireless industry — including many open source mobile app developers — are anticipating the Android 2.2 release, dubbed Froyo, not only because of its faster processing features but also for its potential to mitigate the nascent OS’s fragmentation issue.

        Handsets powered by Google’s Android are becoming increasingly popular, but the open source smartphone platform is facing a threat that could cause it to self-destruct.

    • Sub-notebooks

      • Dual-core Atom for netbooks?

        Intel will launch its first dual-core Atom processor for netbooks and other mobile devices during the third quarter, Fudzilla claims. The N550 will be clocked at 1.5GHz, have 512KB of second-level cache per core, and offer an 8.5 Watt TDP, Fuad Abazovic writes.

Free Software/Open Source

  • Do we need open source vendors?

    One of the biggest misconceptions about open source software (OSS) in the enterprise is that it is software that can be rolled out without the involvement of a vendor. But in reality, in any enterprise software deployment, there will always be someone that needs to play the role that the vendor plays in the commercial software space.

    What I do mean when I say that there will always need to be a vendor? To put it simply, I believe that there will always need to be someone you can count on to provide the support and services that you can’t depend on the open source community to provide.

  • New Hampshire Libraries Band Together for their Implementation of Koha

    ByWater Solutions, an open source community supporter and official Koha support company, announced today that The Monadnock Library Community of New Hampshire has partnered with them for the installation and support of the community version of the Koha integrated library system.

  • Databases

    • 5 of the Best Free Linux MySQL Tools

      MySQL is a relational database management system. It provides a very fast, multi-threaded, multi-user, and robust SQL (Structured Query Language) database server. MySQL is the most popular open source database, and is the database component of the LAMP software stack. LAMP consists of the Apache web server, MySQL and PHP, the essential building blocks to run a general purpose web server. MySQL is used and championed by many large organizations including Google, Facebook, BBC, Intel, Sun, SAP, Dell, AMD, Novell, Veritas and many others.

  • Oracle

    • 6 Advanced OpenOffice.org Extensions

      OpenOffice.org (OOo for short) is a powerful open source and multi-platform office suite, and is even comparable to Microsoft Office. However, there’s always room-to-grow, features to improve, and things to customize. Luckily, the open source community provides a great repository of extensions and add-ons. Today, we’ll look at six of them. Now let’s get started!

  • CMS

    • Social networking platform eXo Social released

      eXo has announced the release of eXo Social 1.0, an enterprise social networking package which supports OpenSocial, under an AGPL licence. eXo Social is bundled with eXo’s GateIn 3.0 and Tomcat 6.0 to allow users to configure a social network “out of the box”. eXo Social is aimed at enterprises who want to integrate social networking concepts into their existing infrastructure.

    • eXo Social now open source

      eXo Software said its eXo Social 1.0, which follows the Open Social standard, is now available under the Affero GPL License.

      The AGPL makes server enhancements as well as software available to others. It is considered the bottom of the open source incline for online companies, and is staunchly resisted by Google for that reason.

    • Drupal

      • U.S. Department of Commerce using Drupal

        The United States Department of Commerce just relaunched their website on Drupal. Check out their new website at http://commerce.gov.

        According to Wikipedia, the Department of Commerce has more than 140,000 employees, and an annual budget of $14 billion USD. Needless to say this is another great win for Drupal, and for Open Source in government!

      • Forrester Research using Drupal
  • Business

    • Diaspora: The Future of Free Software Funding?

      A couple of weeks ago I wrote about Diaspora, a free software project to create a distributed version of Facebook that gives control back to users. Since then, of course, Facebook-bashing and Diaspora-boosting have become somewhat trendy. Indeed, Diaspora has now soared past its initial $10,000 fund-raising target: at the time of writing, it has raised over $170,000, with 15 days to go. That’s amazing, but what’s more interesting is the way in which Diaspora has done it.

      Of course, the sudden interest of mainstream media has helped, but beyond the arithmetical implications of having lots of people looking at your site, what’s important is how the Diaspora team has managed to turn those proverbial eyeballs into practical funds.

  • BSD

  • Government

    • MT: Government starts open source user group

      The government of Malta has started the Government of Malta Open Source End User Group (Moseug) last month. The group is meant to become a major driving force behind open source initiatives in the country.

      According to an article on the new user group in the Times of Malta newspaper, written by Michel Bugeja, an IT architect at Malta’s governmental Information Technology Agency (MITA), the government wants the group to help to increase the use of open source software in the government. “All stakeholders see the formation of the user group as a commitment from the government to promote open source software on equal play to proprietary software.”

  • Openness

  • Programming

    • Zend Raises Another $9 million – For What?

      They now claim to have more than 1 million registered users for its PHP solutions which include the Zend Studio IDE and Zend Server PHP efforts.

    • Google I/O: What to Expect, What to Hope For

      The folks at Apple have made an art form out of annual conferences with big announcements.

      In recent years we’ve seen the iPhone, MacBook Air, and more recently the iPad unveiled to much fanfare.

      Not to be outdone by Apple, Google has been making some Waves as well with their annual spring conference dubbed Google I/O.

    • Django 1.2 released

      Django 1.2 introduces several large, important new features, including:

      * Support for multiple database connections in a single Django instance.
      * Model validation inspired by Django’s form validation.

      …]

Leftovers

  • Verizon gives up on family’s $18,000 bill

    For, in the story of the Massachusetts family that fought for four years against a Verizon bill of some $18,000, a winner has been declared. And it is not, you will be pained to discover, Verizon.

  • Bill revealed affair, woman sues Rogers

    A Toronto woman says the billing practices of Rogers Wireless Inc. led to her husband discovering her extramarital affair.

  • Exclusive: Seagate confirms 3TB drive

    After a few weeks of rumours, Seagate’s senior product manager Barbara Craig has confirmed to Thinq that “we are announcing a 3TB drive later this year,” but the move to 3TB of storage space apparently involves a lot more work than simply upping the areal density.

    The ancient foundations of the PC’s three-decade legacy has once again reared its DOS-era head, revealing that many of today’s PCs are simply incapable of coping with hard drives that have a larger capacity than 2.1TB.

  • Security/Aggression

    • Cars’ Computer Systems Called at Risk to Hackers

      Automobiles, which will be increasingly connected to the Internet in the near future, could be vulnerable to hackers just as computers are now, two teams of computer scientists are warning in a paper to be presented next week.

    • Hack attacks mounted on car control systems
    • Security guard admits he hacked hospital PCs

      Jesse William McGraw, 25, called himself Ghost Exodus in videos such as this one as he wandered the halls of the North Central Medical Plaza in Dallas during the graveyard shift. He used his physical access to the facility’s PCs to install bots so he could launch attacks on a rival hacking gang, prosecutors said. The compromised machines included a nurse’s station computer for tracking patients and one that controlled the HVAC, or heating, ventilation and air-conditioning system.

    • CCTV? Oh yes, it’s a great earner!

      Oh good! If the system makes more money, then there can be even more watching!

    • Ahead of G20 summit, more CCTV cameras go up

      Crews have been hard at work downtown putting up dozens of security cameras, which will be used to monitor streets during the G20 Summit next month.

    • Tim Loughton and ClassWatch

      Loughton You may not have heard of a company called ClassWatch – but if you’ve got a child of school age, the chances are that Classwatch has an eye on your family. They install CCTV in classrooms. Have a look at their website – under “technology” you can see the way they install surveillance (including listening devices) in different classroom layouts.

    • Unpleasant to see you, to see you, unpleasant

      Of course, such schemes have at their heart a “won’t somebody think of the children” nanny state agenda driven by the extreme examples such as Baby P’s sad death. But cases like that are about the clear-cut failure of social services (who had had multiple interactions with that family). Rather than deal with such incompetence, the state’s solution is to dole out much greater powers to the same types of incompetent people, over the lives of a far wider sector of society. The vast law-abiding majority shouldn’t be intruded upon as a consequence of the state’s failure to deal with the tiny minority.

    • Judge Permanently Bans Webcam Spying On Students
    • 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.

      About half of these machines will be so-called X-ray back-scatter scanners. They use low-energy X-rays to peer beneath passengers’ clothing. That has some scientists worried.

    • Pentagon hacker demands Government payback

      Pentagon hacker, Gary McKinnon has called on the newly-elected British government to put its money where its mouth is and tear up his extradition order.

    • Alasdair Palmer is wrong, wrong, wrong

      I would love to ask Mr Palmer how he thinks ID cards would facilitate crime prevention? Is his ideal world one in which every UK citizen carries identification that the Police can order to see at any time; to paraphrase our new PM’s infamous gaffe – “ver are your papers?” Not even our overbearing previous government were ready to go that far!

    • The Controversy Magnet: PositiveID “Chips” Alzheimer’s Patients, Quite Possibly Without Permission

      When is a medical experiment in which you implant microchips in 200 old people with Alzheimer’s disease not a medical experiment? According to PositiveID (PSID), it’s when you forget to get permission from an institutional review board, which oversees medical experiments on humans.

    • Need a false identity? It’ll cost a couple of quid

      Confused about who was going to end up as prime minister earlier this week? Imagine how the fake identity card company felt which produced documents for The Observer and security company CPP.

      To show how easy it is to obtain fraudulent documents using anyone’s details, CPP applied for four official-looking proofs of ID using David Cameron’s name and Gordon Brown’s photo. As you can see, the results of this unlikely coalition are pretty convincing.

    • West Hull residents asked to shop neighbours for leaving bins out too long

      PEOPLE in a west Hull street are being asked to shop their neighbours if they leave their bins out for too long.

      City council officials are even asking residents to fill in so-called “environmental crime incident diaries”, similar to those used to log violent anti- social behaviour.

    • Pruning twigs leads to £20k fine threat

      When the Highways Agency chopped down dozens of trees shielding his home from the busy M6 last year, pensioner Bryan Wiseman had to simply put up with it.

      But after pruning a couple of branches from a hawthorn tree overhanging his garden in Woodside Way, Short Heath, the 70-year-old has been stunned by the threat of a court fine of up to £20,000.

    • Oh, You Mean Those Quotas

      In March, I wrote a column detailing a number of credible accusations made against the New York City Police Department (NYPD) for instituting a quota system for arrests and for stop-and-frisk searches. At the same time, additional allegations charged higher-ups in the department with actively discouraging crime victims from reporting crimes—as well as downgrading felonies to misdemeanors—in order to make the city’s crime statistics look better. Taken together, these allegations painted an ugly picture of New Yorkers being stopped, hassled, and frisked for either petty offenses or for no offense at all, while the victims of acutal crimes faced unsympathetic law enforcement officials.

      [...]

      Unfortunately, the current political class in New York has bought into the idea that these policies are responsible for the drop in crime. It seems odd to say that it will take an unusually conscientious politician to call for a crime policy that doesn’t involve suppressing real crimes, manufacturing fake ones, and harassing the citizenry. But that is precisely what it will take.

  • Environment/Health

    • Barack Obama sends nuclear experts to tackle BP’s Gulf of Mexico oil leak

      The US has sent a team of nuclear physicists to help BP plug the “catastrophic” flow of oil into the Gulf of Mexico from its leaking Deepwater Horizon well, as the Obama administration becomes frustrated with the oil giant’s inability to control the situation.

    • Oil Spill Encounters Loop Current

      Satellite image speaks volumes

      There have been conflicting rumblings across the newswire services and across social media outlets whether the Gulf oil spill has been entrained into the Gulf of Mexico Loop Current.

      The images below from NASA’s MODIS satellite speaks volumes and confirms many people’s worst fears.

    • How Much Oil Is Really Spilling into the Gulf of Mexico?

      At first, right after the BP Deepwater Horizon offshore rig exploded on April 20, BP and U.S. government officials reported the underwater well was pumping about 1,000 barrels a day into the waters of the Gulf of Mexico. A few days later, that figure was challenged by the non-profit group SkyTruth, which uses remote sensing and digital mapping to evaluate environmental issues globally. Ten days later, by April 30, some industry experts said the well could be leaking at a rate of 5,000 barrels daily — five times the previous estimate, and the one that has been the most widely and persistently used in the media.

    • Gas surge shut well a couple of weeks before Gulf oil spill

      The material paints a chilling image of the violent force of the rig explosions and the chaos that ensued as rig workers tried to escape spewing mud, seawater and methyl hydrates in the form of icy slush. That same type of frozen natural gas blocked BP’s attempts during the weekend to control the well leak with a huge box lowered 5,000 feet to the sea floor.

      Back on April 20, the slush forced its way to the rig, shot 240 feet in the air and heated into a gas that quickly ignited into fireballs, Bea’s witness accounts say. Among those tossed asunder by the explosions were BP officials who were on the rig to celebrate a seven-year spotless safety record.

    • Submerged oil plumes suggest gulf spill is worse than BP claims

      Ocean scientists in the Gulf of Mexico have found giant plumes of oil coagulating at up to 1,300 metres below the surface, raising fears that the BP oil spill may be larger than thought – and that it might create huge “dead zones”.

    • The Right Wing’s Next Target: The Greenlining Institute

      Last year, right-wing activists masqueraded as a pimp and a prostitute and used a phony storyline and a hidden camera to take down the community group ACORN. ACORN was eventually absolved and the unsavory tactics of the right exposed, but that hasn’t stopped the right from moving on to a new target: the Berkeley, California-based Greenlining Institute. Like ACORN, the Greenlining Institute is a progressive organization that advocates for the poor and works for economic justice. It also supports implementation and enforcement of the Community Reinvestment Act, a federal law passed in 1977 to mitigate deteriorating conditions in low and moderate-income neighborhoods by addressing the practice of redlining — denying credit or insurance to people based on their ethnic background or neighborhood.

    • MIT Team Unveils Airplane that Uses 70 Percent Less Fuel

      Today a team of researchers at MIT unveiled their latest feat of engineering — an airplane that uses 70% less fuel than conventional aircraft.

    • Mixing of poisonous chemicals in Tetra Milk Pack disclosed.

      The NA Standing Committee on Human Rights has constituted a monitoring committee to ensure the supply of quality edibles to consumers after disclosure of harmful ingredients in the preparations of Tetra Milk Pack. The meeting of NA Standing Committee was held at the Parliament House with its Chairman Riaz Fatyana in the chair on Monday.

  • Finance

    • Jim’s Mailbox

      Perhaps many intelligent German people studied the history of Weimar hyperinflation that occurred in 1923. The printing presses like those today went out of control sending the price of gold to the stratosphere as paper dollars became useless!

    • Why the SEC Decided to Sue Goldman Sachs

      As you might imagine, the ongoing revelations about the SEC (Bernie Madoff, Allen Stanford, and porn, among others) has made things somewhat awkward for the agency’s employees. Children jeer at them on the street. Priests sigh in disgust when they confess the name of their employer through the grate. Their local deli guys are like, “How’s it hangin’, ladyboy?” when they stop in to buy cigarettes. Even old ladies give them a hard time, according to this morning’s Journal.

    • An Updated List of Goldman Sachs Ties to the Obama Government Including Elena Kagan

      III. COMBINED LIST OF GOLDIES TIED TO THE OBAMA GOVERNMENT.

      This lists compiles the names above and those in the prior diary on this. For more detail on names not annotated in this diary, see the earlier diary linked here):

      ALTMAN, ROGER.

      BERKOWITZ, HOWARD P.

      BIDEN, JOE.

      BRAINARD, LAEL.

      BUFFETT, WARREN.

      CLINTON, HILLARY.

      [...]

    • The Government as Identity Thieves

      The spotlight remains on the Greek sovereign debt crisis as the riots continue. The terms of the Greek bailout from the IMF and Eurozone countries remain contentious with citizens on all sides. Europeans hate having their governments throw public money away as much as Americans do. The Greeks are not happy about having their taxes raised while their pensions and salaries are cut. Meanwhile, it is rumored by the Financial Times, AFP and others that Greece may spend more than it saves from austerity measures on arms deals with Germany, France and the US as a potential condition of receiving bailout funds. If true, it is certainly not unprecedented for the global military industrial complex to benefit from deals made by their friends in the central banking community. After all, war is the health of the state. The last thing big government proponents want is for peace to break out in the world.

  • AstroTurf

    • “Your Superhero is Smoking?”

      So, I’m new, but I said screw it and I took Gary’s concern up with management and here’s the deal.

      If Supercool Creative gets 500 tweets telling us the logo is no good we’ll change it… on our business cards, letterhead, websites, social networking sites… everything.

    • Death by Tweet?

      Supercool Creative, a social marketing company that tries to shape opinion by making viral videos and posting them on the Web, recently adopted a new Superman-like hero as its logo. So what’s the problem? The guy is shown smoking a cigarette. After the image prompted a man from Prospect, Connecticut to tweet the company letting them know their smoking logo was not cool, Supercool Creative decided to take turn what appeared to be a nascent social effort to oust their logo into a into a viral challenge.

    • Pampers Parents Liars? That’s P&G’s Response to Complaining Consumers

      Parents who’ve complained that reformulated Pampers caused severe diaper rash in their children are liars, a Procter & Gamble executive claims.

      “For a number of weeks, Pampers has been a subject of growing but completely false rumors fueled by social media that its new Dry Max diaper causes rashes and other skin irritations,” said Jodi Allen, P&G Vice President for Pampers. “These rumors are being perpetuated by a small number of parents, some of whom are unhappy that we replaced our older Cruisers and Swaddlers products while others support competitive products and the use of cloth diapers. Some have specifically sought to promote the myth that our product causes ‘chemical burns.’”

      Allen offered no documentation for her allegations, simply labeling the complaints of parents false. But an analysis of complaints filed with ConsumerAffairs.com finds that most come from parents who were loyal Pampers customers until they encountered problems with the reformulated “Dry Max” Pampers.

    • Spin

      • Texas schools board rewrites US history with lessons promoting God and guns

        US Christian conservatives drop references to slave trade and sideline Thomas Jefferson who backed church-state separation

        [...]

        The new curriculum asserts that “the right to keep and bear arms” is an important element of a democratic society. Study of Sir Isaac Newton is dropped in favour of examining scientific advances through military technology.

        There is also a suggestion that the anti-communist witch-hunt by Senator Joseph McCarthy in the 1950s may have been justified.

        The education board has dropped references to the slave trade in favour of calling it the more innocuous “Atlantic triangular trade”, and recasts the Israeli-Palestinian conflict as driven by Islamic fundamentalism.

      • My Growing Library of Banned Books

        I have never understood people who become justifiably apoplectic when the government bans books at the behest of a political party in power, but then remain silent (or even offer their support) when the same government power bans books at the behest of private corporate interests. The end result is the same. A free mind who wishes to explore creative works and form artistic judgments on them is prevented from doing so by force of law.

    • Fox

      • Jimmy Wales: Fox News Is Wrong, No Shake Up

        Contrary to several reports, Wikipedia’s Founder Jimmy Wales is not relinquishing his editorial control of Wikipedia and its related projects. On Friday, Fox News reported that “a shakeup is underway at the top levels of Wikipedia…Wales is no longer able to delete files, remove administrators, assign projects or edit any content, sources say. Essentially, they say, he has gone from having free reign over the content and people involved in the websites to having the same capabilities of a low-level administrator.”

      • Glenn Beck’s war on the FCC (and Satan worshippers)

        Right-wing talker Glenn Beck took to his Fox News TV program last Monday night to deliver a rant about how President Obama has compiled something “almost like an enemies list” and how Obama is into “silencing opponents.” The president’s tool of choice for this censorship? Network neutrality—the principle that ISPs cannot interfere with content.

      • Fox News Dishonest Edit of Obama as Exclusionary?
  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

    • U.S. military using private spy ring overseas despite concerns about operation’s legality

      Top military officials have continued to rely on a secret network of private spies who have produced hundreds of reports from deep inside Afghanistan and Pakistan, according to American officials and businessmen, despite concerns among some in the military about the legality of the operation.

      The American military is largely prohibited from operating inside Pakistan. Under Pentagon rules, the army is not allowed to hire contractors for spying.

    • Personal Data: reclaiming individual control

      The potential rewards are immense. It’s not just that, like BP, we need to stem the toxic leakage, in our case of personal data from government. Nor that we need to cut the cost of maintaining government’s huge data sets, and restore people’s trust in what goervnment does with personal data. The real wins come when public services are driven more directly by more accurate data sets, and can be more closely aligned only to needs which really exist. Imagine the “just in time” revolution of 1970s car manufacturing applied to public services. But the saving we have to make mean we’ll need nothing less than that.

    • EFF: Forget cookies, your browser has fingerprints

      Even without cookies, popular browsers such as Internet Explorer and Firefox give Web sites enough information to get a unique picture of their visitors about 94 percent of the time, according to research compiled over the past few months by the Electronic Frontier Foundation.

    • Web Browsers Leave ‘Fingerprints’ Behind as You Surf the Net
    • Facebook downplays privacy crisis meeting
    • Welcome to the former Big Brother House

      Finally and perhaps most importantly, data protection simply cannot be enforced while national DP watchdogs are starved of the cash and personnel they need to manage an enormous task of supervision and education and take on the crucial job of leading test and group cases. But proper resourcing needs not more law but political will. That must come from ordinary users making it clear that contrary to whatever Marc Zuckerberg may think, privacy really does matter to them. It’s not ALL about the economy, stupid.

    • Extended Civil Commitment of Sex Offenders Is Upheld

      The 7-to-2 decision touched off a heated debate among the justices on a question that has lately engaged the Tea Party movement and opponents of the new health care law: What limits does the Constitution impose on Congress’s power to legislate on matters not specifically delegated to it in Article I?

    • China’s Web “firewall” should be WTO issue: EU’s Kroes

      Dutch-born Kroes, who is also in charge of Europe’s digital agenda, said the firewall was a trade barrier as long as it blocked communication for Internet users, preventing the free flow of information.

    • AAT upholds EFA link deletion

      We are disappointed but not surprised by this decision, which we feel highlights many issues with the current system. Those who choose to can simply move their content overseas or change the address of the web page in question, leaving those who abide by the spirit of the law to remove their material, or have it removed for them by their provider. From the leak of the blacklist, we saw that many of the sites on there were far from obscene, but contained all manner of harmless, controversial and borderline political material. This raises enormous concerns. Could debate and culture thrive in Australia if all R-rated material was effectively blocked?

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Legal experts: LimeWire likely doomed

      A federal court judge has likely dealt a death blow to LimeWire, one of the most popular and oldest file-sharing systems, according to legal experts.

    • The Pirate Bay Sinks And Swims
    • The Economist looks at “piracy” and internet access

      The problem with that is whether the portion “detected” as a copy is really piracy. The article totally ignores whether fair use would allow the “copy.”

      [...]

      It concludes, “America’s regulatory approach has left much of the country with a cable monopoly for truly fast broadband access. The single largest reason given for failing to purchase broadband access in America is price, and many non-adopters are stymied by hardware fees, a lack of billing transparency and the extra cost of bundled services that providers often add to internet access. The FCC’s current plan to ask last-mile providers to subsidise rural service, and to ensure equal treatment of packets of information is a mild intervention by global standards. America’s modern-day common carriers should count themselves lucky.”

    • Copyrights

      • Time Warner Cable tries to put brakes on massive piracy case

        Time Warner Cable has no intention of complying with thousands of requests asking it to identify copyright infringers.

        Remember the US Copyright Group? They’re the DC legal outfit that is turning P2P copyright infringement into cash, partnering with independent movie studios (the big players are not involved) to sue individual file-swappers in federal court—and ISPs are not pleased with the plan.

      • Over $50 Billion NOT Lost due to Software Piracy

        The main problem with software piracy is that people take software for granted. Software is easy to get, easy to download, and easy to pass around and share with friends. Joe might say to Fred “look at how awesome the new Photoshop is, let me install it on your machine so you can check it out”. Now Joe and Fred both have it, but neither would have purchased Photoshop if it weren’t so easy to get (have you seen the price of it lately?!) and therefore their theft wouldn’t factor in to the Business Softtware Alliance’s statistics.

      • Hollywood’s Passion For Movie Remakes May Run Into Copyright Problems… Created By Hollywood

        The MPAA and Hollywood in general have been very, very strong supporters of stricter and more restrictive copyright laws pretty much as far as they can go. Jack Valenti, for many years the head of the MPAA, has famously declared both that, if it were up to him, copyright would last “forever minus a day” and that fair use was not part of the law. But, of course, time and time again, we see that strongest defenders of copyright law often find that they get a bit upset when it constrains them as well. Eriq Gardner has the story of the rise in lawsuits over Hollywood remakes from the estates (or others who purchased the copyrights later) of authors claiming infringement over movies. The main case that resulted in the article is really quite impressive in the number of layers deep that the whole thing goes.

      • Time Warner Cable Stands Up To Automated Copyright Infringement Filing Factory

        During that time, we noted that US Copyright Group claimed that it had gone from having one ISP cooperating to “75%” of ISPs cooperating. This was a surprise, because years back, ISPs had been reluctant to cooperate with similar efforts. So the numbers seemed questionable. Either way, apparently Time Warner Cable is not at all interested in working with US Copyright Group.

      • Why I Steal Movies… Even Ones I’m In

        With bandwidth and storage increasing exponentially, getting cheaper, and consumers becoming more tech-savvy, it’s becoming easier every day to grab free copies of books, movies and albums. This is why Internet users are thrilled. Including me. This is why people in the entertainment industry are terrified. Including me.

      • Princeton Demands Website Remove Elena Kagan’s Thesis; Claiming Copyright Infringement

        Of course, ordering that the document be pulled down pretty much guarantees that it will get spread more widely — and there’s definitely a journalistic reporting defense for posting the document (though, I’m not particularly convinced that anything anyone wrote in college has much meaning once they’ve spent a few decades outside of college). And, of course, in trying to get the document taken down, it’s just going to lead conspiracy-minded folks to think there’s more to the document than there is (in actuality, it’s a rather bland historical analysis, but you wouldn’t know that from what some sites are claiming about it). But from a journalistic standpoint, it seems you could make a decent argument for fair use in distributing the document. In fact, publications like Newsweek are already sharing parts of the thesis as well (mostly to debunk the hysteria around it). It’s difficult to see what Princeton gained in issuing the takedown notice, other than to rile up people.

      • Reinventing Book Publishing: Building Real Communities, And Only Holding Rights For Three Years

        Now there are some things in this description that I think are great, and others that I’m not sure will work, but it definitely is a big and interesting vision, that really does seem to get the basic concept of both connecting with fans and giving them a reason to buy, while also looking to build out complementary scarcities. My main concern are (as usual) the attempts to use infinite goods as if they were scarce, but given so many other smart aspects to this program, I get the feeling that after some experimentation, things will shake out in a way that works well.

      • James Moore Has Just Made Himself A Big Target

        James Moore now has a big target painted on his back. No matter what he does, someone isn’t going to be happy. In fact he, and the Conservative Government would have been far better served to have ignored the issue. The current Canadian copyright regime has problems, however it’s better than what the United States or Great Britain have implemented, and far, far better than what South Korea has implemented.

        Currently Canada has one of the best copyright systems in the world. It isn’t as flexible as it should be, the copyright term is far too long, it’s corporate friendly features are too strong, and it’s artist friendly features are far too weak. In fact the change that would most help creators could be made easily, would attract the support of a wide spectrum of Canadians, and incidentally bring us closer to the WIPO copyright treaty. That is to make it illegal for a corporation or anyone else to buy a copyright. Oh, they should be allowed to lease copyrights, but for a period of no more than five years, and automatic renewal should be illegal. The only method of changing ownership of a copyright would be through inheritance.

      • Canadian Appeals Court Says Song Previews Can Be Fair Dealing

        While the US entertainment industry continues to insist that Canada’s copyright law is way too “friendly” to would-be infringers, one area where it most certainly is not is in the area of fair use. Up in Canada, they don’t even have fair use, but the much more limited “fair dealing,” which is rigidly defined (unlike fair use) — with one area being “research.” Apparently, the Copyright Board of Canada ruled back in 2007 that the 30-second previews of music found on services like iTunes counted as fair dealing, because it was consumer “research” into whether or not they wanted to purchase the song. In response, the Canadian songwriters group SOCAN disagreed and asked a court to review. According to SOCAN such a broad definition of “research” was not what Canadian copyright law intended. In SOCAN’s view, “research” only meant scientific research (so, only folks in science labs and white lab coats could listen to 30 second previews legally).

      • And Here Comes The Media Campaign About How Spain Needs To Change Its Copyright Laws

        So when Spain finds that a file sharing network doesn’t violate copyright laws because it only points to infringing files, but doesn’t do any of the distribution, the industry spins it as Spain being weak on copyright, rather than just accurate in applying liability.

        Of course, childish threats from Hollywood to leave the market (yeah, that’ll stop file sharing…) has convinced some to put forth new copyright laws that mirror those elsewhere. This, despite the fact that an economic analysis of the new law suggests it would do more harm than good.

      • MPAA Worries About Pirating U.S. Soldiers in Iraq

        While U.S. men and women put their lives at risk in Iraq, the MPAA has queried the military about the pirating habits of the soldiers stationed there. A declassified document from United States Central Command confirms that the MPAA is fighting a war of its own in the Middle East, one against copyright infringing soldiers.

Clip of the Day

NASA Connect – WATMTG – Microgravity (1/12/2002)


05.17.10

Links 17/5/2010: Firefox 3.6.4 Build 4, State Services Commission (NZ) Goes for Free Software

Posted in News Roundup at 10:47 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Do Package Managers Spoil Us?

    Do systems break less with easier resolutions due to package managers? Does it mean that the new user of today won’t be as experienced as the old user of yesterday?

    I think it might.

    Users in the past had to chip away and reassemble with less documentation and no package manager. This meant that the user of yesterday ripped apart systems and packages to discover how they worked and which cogs fit where.

  • What IS Linux (and what it should be)?

    But there is a bigger issue at hand for Linux – than just the stigma of its past. With regards to society at large, on a grand-scheme scale, most people don’t even know what Linux is. So to the masses Linux would be completely foreign. And those are the people the Linux distributions should be focusing on.

  • Tuxification

    As you might have guessed, I have a lot of Linux-based T-shirts….a LOT of them. And I enjoy wearing those T-shirts. From time to time wearing the image of Tux encourages strangers who would normally never say anything to strike up a conversation. The number of security people at the airport that know about Linux and Free Software, for instance, is fairly amazing.

    On the other hand, I have fewer outer garments that have Tux or “Linux” on them, and often Tux is not visible as I travel.

    [...]

    On the airplane returning from a recent trip to Brazil I sat beside a woman about my age. She saw my Tux T-shirt and said something about Linux. It turns out that she was a former employee of Sun Microsystems in the USA that had moved to Salvador, Brazil. She had (of course) used Unix, programmed in “C”, JAVA, used MySQL and used other FOSS programs. We exchanged email addresses.

    Make Tux a bit more visible in your life and you may find a lot of new FOSS friends….or just find your suitcase easier.

  • Terminals

    • Remote Terminals With Linux – An Introduction

      One of the most interesting features of Linux is its versatility. Being able to make complicated configurations out-of-the box. You do not need to buy the ultimate hyper business version to have the ability to set up a complex client / server system with dumb terminals and a remote application server.

      Creating a client / server network is relatively easy, since the multi-task / multi-user architecture is a native feature of Linux.

      But in order to understand this process, it is necessary to work with some theory, where we will see what is a client / server network with remote dumb terminals, what are its advantages, in which cases it can be used and in what ways it can be implemented on Linux.

    • Internet Cafes With Linux

      LanBr is a manager software that helps to control and manage of Lan Houses and Cyber Cafes powered by Linux, in order to ease the operations of daily life in an internet cafe/ lan house environment.

      The system is constantly evolving and has many features to achieve a good management of Lan Houses or Cyber Cafes in Linux.

      There are times when you feel you do not belong to the Ubuntu community for your lack of coding knowledge. But is that really true? Do you have to necessarily be a coding geek to contribute to the development of the most popular Linux distro around? The Ubuntu community manager Jono Bacon (who I hear likes bacon) talks to Amber Granner about that and more in this video.

      [...]

      It is a project of Wilson Pinto Junior with help of volunteers and has as main objective to provide a complete and easy LAN Manager for Cyber Cafes and Lan Houses. The Program is all written in Python using Gtk and GNOME Human Guidelines “to an intuitive interface and ease to use”.

  • Google

    • More Images Of What Chrome OS Will Probably Look Like

      Chrome OS — Google’s lightning quick operating system that’s based entirely on the Chrome browser — is due out the second half of this year (check out our report earlier this evening on its progress). We’ve seen some demos of it in action, and even tried out an early version ourselves, but there are still plenty of question marks as far as how people will actually use this thing. After all, while the browser will be able to accomplish most tasks, users are going to want some degree of multitasking, and there’s also the question of how users will be navigating Chrome OS’s basic file structure.

  • Ballnux

  • Kernel Space

    • Community Feedback Helps Make Linux.com Even Better

      The annual Linux.com Planning meeting took place at the Linux Foundation Collaboration Summit last month. It was a great opportunity to meet face-to-face with some of the most active Linux.com community members and to understand what kinds of things are working and not working on the site. We even had some hard-core contributors who dialed in for the four-hour session!

    • Using qemu to instrument Windows

      Part of the problem that we face in providing Linux hardware support is that we’re lucky if there’s a spec, and even if there’s a spec there almost certainly isn’t a test suite. Linux still isn’t high on the list of things that vendors test with, so as a result hardware and firmware tend to be written to work with Windows rather than some more ideal notion of what a spec actually says.

    • Guest Blog: Rares Aioanei – Kernel News with openSUSE Flavor

      -Frederic Weisbecker posted perf fixes for 2.6.34, James Bottomley came up with SCSI fixes for -rc6, Paul E. McKenney had some RCU fixes for 2.6.35; perf fixes came also from Arnaldo Carvalho de Melo.

  • Applications

    • Decibel Audio Player – Simple Audio Player For Linux

      Decibel Audio Player is a lightweight (and simple) GTK+ based audio player. Although it has existed since 2007, it has been updated again.

      This player is made for speed usage, not for looks, so this is very fast, even on low-end netbooks/pcs.

    • [Compiz] Bugfixing and Testing

      Over the past 2 or so weeks, I’ve gotten some phenomenal amounts of input varying from quirks, crash reports and other problems which I probably wouldn’t have spotted otherwise.

      [...]

      Over the past 2 or so days, I did some refactoring of the buildsystem so that plugins do not need to use ‘rpath’ in order to link to libraries such as libcompizconfig and libdecoration. This means that we can finally build RPM and Debian packages. Hopefully a PPA for Ubuntu will be coming soon, and we might even see Compiz 0.9.2~ in Ubuntu Maverick Meerkat if we’re lucky :)

    • prll is a pearl of a utility for parallel command execution

      Varlec is working on some cosmetic changes for the next version of prll. “I will also try to make prll POSIX-compliant. Most of the work has already been done by a helpful user, but I have yet to check it, merge it with the latest version, and see if I can maintain it in the long run. I’m also considering some internal utilities to be made available to the functions being executed. For example, I’d like to provide a locking mechanism to users, further expanding the usefulness of prll. But I want to keep prll as simple as possible.

    • Morevna: Open Source Anime Using Synfig, Blender, Gimp, and Krita

      Synfig is an authoring tool designed from the ground up to do smooth animation without drawing multiple frames in between the key frames, a process called “tweening,” meaning that the number of artists required to complete a major project is significantly reduced. The artist defines the position of the objects in two keyframes, chooses a path for the movement, and assigns filters or deformations, and the result is computer generated. I understand that normal anime has very few tween frames and limits motion on the screen to limit the amount of work artists have to do. Synfig’s method means a smoother-looking movie with thirty frames per second and the ability to add more animated movement.

    • Add a Pandora Screenlet to your Linux desktop
    • Writing made easy for young students: Introducing WriteType

      After several months of development, it is finally time to introduce the world to WriteType. WriteType is an application designed to aid young students in writing and typing on the computer. It offers text completion to make touch typing more efficient. It also will read back the document with one of the four implemented text-to-speech engines, enable teachers to easily highlight areas for review, and more.

      [...]

      Apparently, the school had been purchasing these $400-500 devices because they offered word completion. These devices, vaguely reminiscent of the infamous AlphaSmart series, were anything but ergonomic or easy to use. Word completion was the killer feature that made paying $500 to type on a itsy-bitsy LED screen seem like an attractive offer. It would seem that a feature included by default in most cell phones would have at least one desktop implementation, however a little bit of research showed that this awkward brand of “computer” was indeed the only way to make use of auto-completion while typing documents.

      The shock effect alone was enough to motivate me to spend the weekend hacking up an initial version. I sent out some early versions a local elementary school to be tested. But as time went on, I began hearing from other people as well. If a program that achieves such a feat was in such high demand, it is quite amazing that no proprietary software company has made any attempt to capitalize on the needs of schools. Of course, readers of my blog understand how I feel about greedy educational companies who claim to want what is best for education but really just want to be filthy rich. Because of these beliefs, I had no choice but to release WriteType as free software.

    • Songbird has sung its last song…on Linux

      Will Linux suffer if Nightingale fails? No. Would Linux better for having Nightingale? Of course. Should the Linux community reach out to the Nightingale project and ensure it doesn’t fail? Hard to say. If given the choice between more rapid development and features for the current standards (Rhythmbox, Banshee, Amarock) or including Nightingale in the mix (and slowing down development of the others), I would happily say forget Nightingale. But given that Linux needs as many familiar tools as it can get, Nightingale could (and should) be a very important project.

    • Instructionals

    • GIMP

      • A Quick Gimp Tutorial For Hiding People
      • [AVATAR] Become a real Na’Vi using GIMP!
      • Episode 140: Double Deck Bus License

        00:20 My trip to England
        02:00 My photographic output – the image to process
        03:20 Bill’s workflow guide
        03:50 Copy the original layer
        04:30 Perspective correction
        05:15 Rotate (two attempts)
        10:00 Crop, inside out
        12:30 Cloning and healing
        14:30 Contrast correction with a curve
        15:05 Dodge and burn
        19:00 Scaling
        22:20 Sharpening and flattening the image
        24:00 Saving for the Web
        24:20 Scaling discussed
        26:30 How to license the workflow guide
        27:30 Creative Commons License
        32:45 Creative Commons for images

    • Games

      • Quake-Live Follow-Up: Strategy Observations

        For those of you bored out of your minds at this, I’ll get back to my regular content eventually. But hey, it is sometimes also important to show that, yes, Linux can be an enjoyable gaming platform, and Linux geeks can enjoy ourselves like normal human beings once in a while.

      • Penumbra: Overture, HPL1 Engine And OALWrapper Released As Open Source

        Frictional Games are the second company to release the source code of their game and engine because of the Humble Indie Bundle success.
        The game and engine were released under few different licenses depending on the tools, game parts : GPLv3, Creative Commons 3 and zlib

  • Desktop Environments

    • Carving up the corpse of Fluxbuntu

      If you’re running Ubuntu you can probably just install Fluxbox and then force dpkg to install those deb files and start it up. If you’re using Arch, grab the deb2targz tool out of the repositories, transmogrify each one of those debs into tar.gz files, then extract them to your root directory — the file structure will drop them perfectly into place. Probably most other distros could follow that same route, and get these same results.

    • K Desktop Environment (KDE SC)

      • Akonadi Meeting and the KDE SC 4.5 release

        We are at the Akonadi meeting at the KDAB offices in Berlin right now, which was quite nice so far. We had the first round of API review of new methods in KDEPIMLIBS for 4.5, and already cleaned up quite a bit. Having multiple eyes look at the API is a nice way to improve the overall quality of the API. We met with Andrey Moiseenko and Alvaro Manera of Nokia, who work on calendaring for the next Meego phone from Nokia. They use our KCal library, which they have forked/extended for some special requirements they have. We’re now making plans with them to integrate their changes back to our version of KCal, so that both sides will profit from changes and have a single point of maintenance.

      • Whats up in KDE Remote Desktop Client?

        KDE SC 4.5 is coming up around the bend and I’m posting about some of the new exciting (to somebody I hope) features for KRDC. For KRDC 4.4 we introduced a new gui layout. I have been away from the keyboard for awhile and finally have been able to hammer out some bugfixes (1,2,3,4) for those new features as well as some older bugs to both 4.5 and 4.4.3 (for the most part).

        Well what are these new features I’m talking about? Well for starters I’ve taken that drab list of connections in the center of KRDC and made it much more useful by adding statistics and other information. You can sort your list by these different pieces of information and it will save your sort column/order for the next time you open it so you can keep it sorted the way you like.

      • KDE and the Masters of the Universe

        As some of you may know, I stared a new podcast called KDE and the Masters of the Universe (KDEMU for short). It is an *all* KDE podcast that will cover a wide range of KDE topics, releases, interviews with developers, etc. Our premier episode with Aaron Seigo and has just been released Today!

      • Alternative widgets explorer [Plasma]

        From KDE SC 4.5, you’ll be able to fire up KRunner or Lancelot, search for some plasma widget and drag it to the desktop.

      • TouchFreeze 0.2.5 for Linux

        TouchFreeze is a special software for Linux system that will disable the mouse click while you are typing. This is a useful utility for Linux built using QT4 and Xeview header. TouchFreeze docks in your system tray (KDE/Gnome) and disables button click events while typing.

  • Distributions

    • Reviews

      • live cd compare : ubuntu/kubuntu 10.04 and pclinuxos 2010 kde/gnome

        Number of Linux distributions do not make us confused to select the distro. Limitations of the Internet connection is also not stopped our desire to learn Linux. Still afraid of installing linux? do not worry, there’s a many distribution with live cd base. With the live cd you can try to use Linux without having to install to the hard disk. There are various Linux distributions that use the livecd, but this time I am just going to try livecd of ubuntu and PCLinuxOS distro.

    • Debian Family

      • Debian + Backports is Better than the Latest Ubuntu

        I’ve always found Debian Stable+Backports to be more stable than the latest Ubuntu. What’s more, with backports configured you can get the latest versions of popular packages.

      • VideoLink, assembles a DVD video filesystem from HTML pages and video files.

        VideoLink is available in Debian from version 5.0 ‘lenny’. If you don’t run Debian, get the source tarball (tar.gz file) and build from that.

      • Ubuntu

        • Chromium Daily shifts buttons to the left for Ubuntu users

          Users of the Chromium browser daily builds for Ubuntu may be surprised to find their window controls ‘doing a Lucid’ and switching from the right to the left.

        • [VIDEO SUNDAY] Jono Bacon on non-developers in the Ubuntu Community

          There are times when you feel you do not belong to the Ubuntu community for your lack of coding knowledge. But is that really true? Do you have to necessarily be a coding geek to contribute to the development of the most popular Linux distro around? The Ubuntu community manager Jono Bacon (who I hear likes bacon) talks to Amber Granner about that and more in this video.

        • Desktop Fun: 21 Cool Ubuntu Wallpapers

          Ubuntu 10.04 was released last month, and comes with some breath taking design enhancements, and has some fabulous art work integrated into it. We’ve put together a collection of wallpapers to make it more customized.

        • Zeitgeist: The Road to Maverick Meerkat

          Just like last year Zeitgeist developers were present at UDS…
          It was amazing I will write about the UDS exprience in another blogpost.
          I think my favorite moment was Mark announcing Unity and using Zeitgeist for file management on the desktop. Although Mikkel knew about it (he works for Canonical), it took the rest of the team by surprise. It is very nice to feel appreciated. And I think i speak on behalf of the whole team when I say “Thank you Ubuntu and Canonical for giving us a chance”.

        • Ubuntu 10.04 installation fun

          Bottom line: There is missing a clear path how to replace older Linux, be it Ubuntu or whatever else. Something fast, clear, nice for lame user without selecting / partition in advanced mode (not that complicated, but still). One question: “Do you really want to replace this BlaBla Linux? All data on that partition will be lost. Your Windows XP will not be affected. Proceed?” That is the thing I’m missing as an upgrade option.

        • Variants

          • Peppermint: Just like any other Lubuntu, only more so

            Ultimately it all falls to preference, and we’re back to the most important idea: Freedom to change and choose. So if Peppermint appeals to you because you believe you’re sparing your netbook the effort of thrashing through the Gnome desktop, and at the same time undercutting the system requirements of Lubuntu … well, you are always welcome to use it.

          • Review: Peppermint OS

            Peppermint OS is a very nice project with a fresh and very interesting approach to how Linux should shape up for modern users. Far from the extremely minimalistic approach taken by Google with Google Chrome OS, Peppermint OS actually keeps enough local weight to keep your attention when you can’t go online.

            In fact, one thing I specially like about Peppermint’s approach is that it provides lots of flexibility. On the one hand, you may choose to go minimalistic, going for an OS that can take as little as 512MB of hard drive space. Nothing would prevent you from installing many of the applications available and beefing up the local catalog though, consequently getting closer to a standard desktop OS.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Litl Plans to Launch Web-Connected TV Box

      The Litl box will run an open Linux-based OS, the same used in the Webbook, making it easier to encourage users to create web apps due to the open OS. litl will also be releasing an Adobe Flash 10.1-based Software Development Kit (SDK) at this weekend’s Flash and the City developers conference.

    • 4 Netbook Operating Systems Worth Checking Out

      There are a number of great netbooks on the market, and a bunch more great netbook operating systems worth trying out. I’ve only highlighted a few of the pack leaders worth checking out, but there’s a lot more beneath the surface if you’re willing to dig.

Free Software/Open Source

  • How and Why Contributing to FOSS Can Benefit Your Organization

    A Linux distribution is a carefully culled collection of software from these upstream projects which makes a complete operating system and even includes a lot of application software. This collection of software is tested and prepared to run securely and maintainably together. Debian is built upon this model.

    Some distributions of Linux use Debian as a source project unto itself. There are a number of Linux distributions based on Debian, including the popular KNOPPIX and Ubuntu distributions. Being “based on Debian” can mean several things, but it primarily means they draw from the software repository at some point in the release cycle, and they use the Advanced Packaging Tool (apt) to manage this software. In these cases Debian is an intermediary between the original FOSS project and the “children” distributions which may also pull from original software projects to expand upon what Debian provides to target their particular focus.

  • Mozilla

    • Firefox 3.6.4 Build 4 Released

      A new build of Firefox 3.6.4 has been released and is currently distributed to users who have a previous build of the upcoming Firefox version installed on their computer system. The update check in the browser will recognize the new build and download it automatically to the computer so that the browser can be updated.

    • Hacks to Make Firefox Faster than Google Chrome

      Google Chrome has now eclipsed Mozilla Firefox in the speed category. However, I still use Firefox as my main web browser because it is still better than Chrome in certain areas.

      But just recently, I tried a few tweaks that significantly improved the speed of Firefox making it a little bit snappier than the latest version of Google Chrome when loading webpages.

  • Databases

  • Project Releases

  • Government

    • SSC specifies open source software in tender process

      The State Services Commission has raised eyebrows after specifying that open source software be part of its revamped website.

      The commission has told potential suppliers that the website’s content management system, which will let it update and manage the site, must use open source software rather than proprietary software – such as that supplied by Microsoft.

Leftovers

  • Security/Aggression

  • Finance

    • Greek leader considers action against US banks

      Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou declared he is not ruling out taking legal action against U.S. investment banks for their role in creating the spiraling Greek debt crisis.

      Both the Greek government and its citizens have blamed international banks for fanning the flames of the debt crisis with comments about Greece’s likely default, actions that are causing the country’s borrowing costs to soar.

    • Fear of a Double Dip Could Cause One

      THE risk of a double-dip recession hasn’t abated, even after news of the huge European bailout in response to the Greek debt crisis.

      World markets soared initially on the announcement of the nearly $1 trillion rescue plan, and then declined. But as the economist John Maynard Keynes cautioned long ago, such market reactions are basically a “beauty contest” — with investors trying to predict the short-term reaction that other investors think still other investors will have.

    • Fears Intensify That Euro Crisis Could Snowball

      After a brief respite following the announcement last week of a nearly $1 trillion bailout plan for Europe, fear in the financial markets is building again, this time over worries that the Continent’s biggest banks face strains that will hobble European economies.

    • Nightmare on Wall Street

      The Wall Street reform bill is taking that rarest of paths through the Senate — actually gaining tougher provisions against the industry as it proceeds, not being watered down to win votes as health care reform was.

    • Despite audit, Federal Reserve’s scope may widen with Senate bill

      As the debate over how to overhaul financial regulation heated up last year, there was one thing Democrats and Republicans seemed to agree on: that the Federal Reserve had made major mistakes that contributed to the financial crisis and needed to have its wings clipped.

    • Obama’s terms for financial overhaul remain mostly intact

      Passage of a 1,400-page bill to overhaul the nation’s financial regulations would come just two months after Obama signed a landmark health-care overhaul. But in the case of financial regulation, much more so than with health care, the Senate bill largely reflects the administration’s initial blueprint, despite the fervent efforts of lobbyists and lawmakers of all stripes to alter it.

    • James K. Galbraith: Why the ‘Experts’ Failed to See How Financial Fraud Collapsed the Economy

      Thus the study of financial fraud received little attention. Practically no research institutes exist; collaboration between economists and criminologists is rare; in the leading departments there are few specialists and very few students. Economists have soft- pedaled the role of fraud in every crisis they examined, including the Savings & Loan debacle, the Russian transition, the Asian meltdown and the dot.com bubble. They continue to do so now. At a conference sponsored by the Levy Economics Institute in New York on April 17, the closest a former Under Secretary of the Treasury, Peter Fisher, got to this question was to use the word “naughtiness.” This was on the day that the SEC charged Goldman Sachs with fraud.

    • Wall Street banks investigated over links to ratings agencies

      Inquiry into bid to find whether banks cheated in hunt for high credit ratings includes Citigroup, Goldman Sachs, Merrill Lynch and Morgan Stanley

  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

Clip of the Day

NASA Connect – HASB – Sun Basics (1/3/2002)


05.16.10

Links 16/5/2010: More Linux Tablets; Ellison Talks About Sun

Posted in News Roundup at 2:13 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Why cult madness is driving me off Apple

    Do I go with a commodity notebook platform based on Ubuntu? Do I trash years of experience with Apple’s Mac as a platform? Steve Jobs has angered me in a personal way by behaving like the other boorish executives in the industry. I get FUD fed to me on a daily basis, and my FUD detector is strong. Like other consumers, I can be a strong ally. But I’m not a fanboi, not a lapdog sycophant, and am pro IT industry and not a stockholder.

    There’s an HP Pavillion with my name on it out there for $300. It’s a nice used machine. I’m wondering now what it will look like with Lucid Lynx on it. Maybe a VM with Windows 7.

  • Dell upgrades tough netbook

    In each version, the 10in, 1024 x 600 display – a touchscreen if you’re buying for a school – is driven by the CPU’s on-board GPU, the GMA 3150. 802.11n Wi-Fi is part of the package, but there’s a choice of OS: Linux, Windows XP, Windows 7 Professional or Windows 7 Starter.

  • Medical researchers adopt HPC system

    A team from the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) has called on an IBM-based HPC system to help with research on genetics.

  • Acer to Launch Chrome OS Devices at Last?

    Remember Chrome OS, Google’s stripped-to-the-browser operating system? It’s reportedly ready for prime time, with Chrome OS devices from Acer leading the way.

  • Ballnux

    • Samsung’s Bada gets a developer kit

      The Software Developer’s Kit version 1 is available from the Bada Developers’ portal, which promises that the Bada-based Wave phone (which should be shipping by the end of the month) will be followed by “successive promising handsets”, and that Bada phones will be available globally later this year.

    • Samsung releases Bada SDK

      Time will tell if Samsung can attract developers to its own smartphone operating system now that it has released the beta of its Bada software development kit.

    • HTC EVO 4G $200, on Sale June 4

      Sprint’s first 4G smartphone, the EVO 4G, will go on sale June 4 for $200 after a mail-in rebate. (The full price is $450, but if you grab one from Best Buy, you’ll get the discount applied when you buy.)

    • Android This Week: Sprint Unveils EVO 4G Pricing; Patent Infringement Accusations Fly

      Sprint this week officially launched the Android-based EVO 4G phone. The EVO will cost $199 with a two-year contract and require a $79.99 monthly plan that provides 450 anytime talk minutes along with unlimited data, texting and calling to other mobile phones. However, the pricing includes a $10 “premium data charge,” which already has prospective buyers complaining. They’re interpreting the fee as a 4G tax, yet customers in areas without 4G coverage will be subject to it along with those in areas that do have 4G. The EVO 4G will be available on June 4 from Sprint and various retailers.

  • Devices/Embedded

Free Software/Open Source

  • Mozilla

  • Oracle

    • Ellison slams former Sun management

      In an interview with Reuters, Ellison said, “really great blogs do not take the place of great microprocessors”, in an apparent swipe at former Sun CEO Jonathan Schwartz.

      Schwartz, as we are sure you know, had a bit of a habit of blogging, and signed off with a haiku. Nothing unusual about that, maybe, but Ellison said that a lot of this chat came at the expense of actually running a business well.

    • Special Report: Can That Guy in Ironman 2 Whip IBM in Real Life?

      Although his products are used by businesses only and not nearly as recognizable as Apple’s Macs or Google’s search engine, they’ve made Ellison the world’s sixth-richest man, worth an estimated $28 billion, according to Forbes. Oracle counts the bulk of the world’s major corporations as customers, and the company’s market value now tops that of Hewlett-Packard, the world’s top maker of personal computers.

Leftovers

  • Security/Aggression

    • Indo-Mancunian Windows support scammer phones Reg hack

      Yesterday I got a call from a chap claiming to be from Windows Support, letting me know that my computer was dangerously infected, and that only he could help.

      The scam isn’t new – we reported on it a year ago – but tough times are driving miscreants to expand operations to the point where even Reg staff are being targeted in the attempt to put the wind up unsuspecting computer users.

    • Gary McKinnon lawyers lobby new home secretary

      The new home secretary has been urged to overrule her predecessor’s decision to allow the extradition of UK computer hacker Gary McKinnon.

      Mr McKinnon’s lawyers have made “representations” to Conservative Theresa May as part of a long campaign to prevent a US trial for their client.

    • Guilty Plea After Botnet Tested With DDoS on ISP

      Edwards pleaded guilty to the charges before U.S. District Judge Jane J. Boyle on April 29. He is set to be sentenced August 19. Before he decided to plead guilty, Smith’s case had been set to go to trial next week.

    • Software Insecurity is Our Biggest Weakness

      In place of this current model, Ranumm suggested that it may be time for a centralized federal development organization that focuses on writing custom software.

      “Why don’t we have a government coding office? We have a government printing office,” he said. “Why don’t we have a strategic software reserve? Is this putting us at a greater or lesser risk? I’m not sure. But our own software is probably a greater threat to us than anything other people can do to us.”

    • Cryptographer Whit Diffie takes ICANN security job

      Six months after leaving his job at Sun Microsystems noted cryptographer Whitfield ‘Whit’ Diffie has landed a new gig, this time as a security adviser to the corporation that manages the Internet.

  • Environment

    • US Climate Bill: The Good, Bad and Boring Details

      A comprehensive energy and climate bill like this one is a game-changer. It marks a fundamental, and I think irrevocable shift, in our way of doing business. It puts a bounty on carbon, and it marks out a clear path to a world where carbon emissions are a curiosity.

    • The Latest in E-Waste Recycling: e-Steward Certification

      This new certification program is truly worldchanging: it responds to social inequities and environmental problems, and builds consumer demand for responsible business practices by restructuring e-waste recycling through transparency and accountability. According to a Pike Research survey, 76% of American consumers believe recycling is the answer to e-waste.

    • Climate Change and the Integrity of Science: 255 National Academy of Sciences Members Defend Climate Science Integrity

      It seems these scientists realize that what the journal Nature said is true: “Scientists must now emphasize the science, while acknowledging that they are in a street fight.”

      Now these same scientists need to start writing op-eds, doing ed-board meetings, giving talks, and the like (see “Publicize or Perish: The Scientific Community is Failing Miserably in Communicating the Potential Catastrophe of Climate Change“).

    • Greenpeace heads to Arctic to investigate urgent ocean threats

      We are returning to the Arctic Ocean with our ship the Esperanza this month to reinforce the urgent need to protect one of the most pristine and fragile environments on Earth.

    • Setting sail to shut down bluefin tuna fisheries

      The Rainbow Warrior is heading out to confront one of the most irresponsible and destructive fishing operations in the world. Mediterranean bluefin tuna have been exploited to the brink of extinction – making them the most visible and tragic example of oceans and fishery mismanagement.

    • Bad days for bluefin
    • Oil spill could go on for years, experts say

      The retired chairman of an energy investment banking firm told National Geographic in little-noticed comments Thursday that efforts to stop the oil leak under the Gulf of Mexico could prove fruitless and than oil could gush into the ocean for years.

    • Angry Obama denounces oil companies’ ‘ridiculous spectacle’

      “I will not tolerate more finger-pointing or irresponsibility. The people of the Gulf Coast need our help,” Obama said, as he also unveiled a review of the environmental safeguards to be put in place for oil and gas exploration.

      He slammed the three oil companies linked to the Deepwater Horizon rig for seeking to pass the blame, denouncing what he called a “ridiculous spectacle” by their top officials during congressional hearings.

    • BP must clarify intentions on clean up costs: US

      British Petroleum must clarify its “true intentions” on paying for costs associated with a massive US oil spill, the US homeland security and interior secretaries said in a letter released Saturday.

  • Finance

    • Exclusive: Waddell is mystery trader in market plunge

      A big mystery seller of futures contracts during the market meltdown last week was not a hedge fund or a high-frequency trader as many have suspected, but money manager Waddell & Reed Financial Inc, according to a document obtained by Reuters.

      Waddell on May 6 sold a large order of e-mini contracts during a 20-minute span in which U.S. equities markets plunged, briefly wiping out nearly $1 trillion in market capital, the internal document from Chicago Mercantile Exchange parent CME Group Inc said.

  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

    • China targets online commentator anonymity

      China is considering forcing its citizens to use their real names when they post comments on internet bulletin boards.

      The suggestion came from Wang Chen, head of the government’s information office, at a meeting of senior Chinese leaders.

    • Evony case against British blogger withdrawn

      The Chinese owners of the massive multiplayer online game, Evony, dropped a libel case against British blogger Bruce Everiss after two days of hearings, the Guardian reports.

    • Google Comes Clean About Wi-Fi Network Data Collection

      Google opened up in a blog post today confirming that they have been collecting data from Wi-Fi networks with their Google Maps Street View Cars as they have driven around. This is a subject that has been brought up, but in a recent blog post Google said that it had not been collecting “payload data”, but is now saying that it actually has been.

    • Google’s Wi-Fi Spying: What Were They Thinking?

      It was no secret that Google’s cars had already been collecting publicly broadcast SSID information (Wi-Fi network names) and MAC addresses (unique numbers for devices like Wi-Fi routers). But this techie data, which is used for location-based services such as Google Maps, didn’t include any “payload data,” or personal information sent over the network.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Obama to promote RIAA’s favourite lawyer

      The prosecutor who spanked the World’s Dumbest File Sharer, Jammie Thomas, is set to be the US’ next Solicitor General.

      The Solicitor General represents the US Government in Supreme Court cases, and there’s a vacancy after the current incumbent Elena Kagan became the latest Court appointment.

    • Pirate Bay ISP hit with German injunction

      The Hamburg district court has slapped an injunction on German ISP CB3ROB (Cyberbunker) and its operator, demanding that the outfit refrains from plugging The Pirate Bay into the internet.

    • Copyrights

      • Jane Siberry makes entire back-catalog into free downloads

        Clifton sez, “Canadian recording artist Jane Siberry has made all of her recordings (16 complete albums) available for free download, with the words: “DOWNLOAD ALL SIBERRY MUSIC HERE. IT IS FREE, A GIFT FROM JANE. TAKE GOOD CARE OF IT. AND ‘PAY IT FORWARD’ TO OTHERS.”

      • Strangling the Net: Stripping DMCA Protections from YouTube

        Greetings. An amicus curiae brief was filed a few days ago by the Washington Legal Foundation in the ongoing Viacom vs. YouTube/Google lawsuit.

        Even by the normal standards of our adversarial legal system, this brief is startling not only in the depth of its misleading and just plain inaccurate arguments, but also in the implications that its “logic” would have for the Internet at large.

        Despite Google’s implementation of a comprehensive “video fingerprinting” system to aid in the identification of copyrighted materials that rights holders wish to remove from the YouTube environment, the brief’s arguments that services such as YouTube are not deserving of DMCA protections are clearly disingenuous.

    • Digital Economy Bill

Clip of the Day

NASA Connect – FOFE – Testing Aircraft (1/11/2001)


05.15.10

Links 15/5/2010: 65,000+ Linux-based Google Phones Per Day; English Leadership on F/OSS

Posted in News Roundup at 6:28 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • CERN cranks up its LHC network

    According to HPCWIRE, the LHC doomsday device’s network has linked mass data storage sites, such as the Ohio Supercomputer Centre and more than 1,000 international physicists, engineers and technicians.

    Apparently the LHC detectors spew out 1.25GB of data per second. That’s about six times the contents of Encyclopedia Britannica including the index every second.

  • Ballnux

    • Nexus One gives the iPhone a run for its money

      Google made a wise decision when it decided to release an open source mobile operating system — it has allowed it to quickly infiltrate the smartphone market because of the business model: it’s free and open source like Linux.

      Despite this, most of the Android devices on the market today are not really true competitors to the iPhone, due to the immaturity, sluggishness and the availability of apps. But with the release of the latest device, the HTC Nexus One running Android v2.1, Android is finally becoming a threat to the iPhone, which has held its own for almost two years as the most desirable mobile device.

    • Nexus One changes in availability

      But, as with every innovation, some parts worked better than others. While the global adoption of the Android platform has exceeded our expectations, the web store has not. It’s remained a niche channel for early adopters, but it’s clear that many customers like a hands-on experience before buying a phone, and they also want a wide range of service plans to chose from.

    • Say Hello to the TELUS HTC Triumph!

      Got to hand it to TELUS as they keep bringing on very strong Android devices. First it was the HTC Hero, followed up with the Motorola Milestone then the very unique Motorola Backflip… now behold the HTC Triumph!

    • Samsung Wave out soon, SDK out now

      As has been widely reported, Samsung’s eagerly anticipated Wave handset is due out in the next month or so and is based around the new open-source bada platform. As a result, people eager to start creating apps for the smartphone device can start doing that right now, by downloading the Software Developers Kit directly from bada.com.

    • Ok, For Real Guys… Android 2.1 Available for Samsung Moment
    • US Cellular’s Samsung Acclaim Pic Confirmed

      Engadget is reporting that the handset pictured to the left is the new Samsung Acclaim that US Cellular has recently scored exclusive rights to. Their confidence that this is the Acclaim is high, with their “doubt meter hovering at zero.”

    • Is this T-Mobile US’s Galaxy S? UPDATE

      This is another one of those posts that could be way off the mark, but it could be right on. Howard Chui from howardchui.com recently posted a video walkthrough of the Samsung Galaxy S. If you will kindly take note of the icons in the screen shot to the right, you’ll notice there are a couple recognizable icons there, icons that are commonly found on T-Mobile US Android devices. I’ve looked through several Galaxy S videos from CTIA and none of the demos show these icons in the app tray, only this video.

    • Samsung Galaxy S Promotional Video Surfaces
  • Instructionals

    • How To Check URLs You Don’t Trust

      There are alternatives which may or may not have their own HTTP engines. Did you know Firefox and Google Chrome have a view-source protocol handler? You can view the source code for my blog at view-source:http://blogs.pcmag.com/securitywatch/.

      And then there’s Curl, a free and open source Internet URL retrieval engine. It’s most famous for retrieving HTTP URLs, but it handles many other protocols too (HTTP, HTTPS, FTP, FTPS, SCP, SFTP, TFTP, DICT, TELNET, LDAP or FILE).

    • VLC Media Player Download
  • Games

    • Four indie games to go open source

      The developers of the Aquaria, Gish, Lugaru HD and Penumbra Overture have all pledged to release the their code as open source. Wolfire Games, makers of Lugaru HD, have already posted their source code under the GNU General Public License (GPL) and within hours of the release a number of people have created and submitted patches.

  • Distributions

    • New Releases

      • VectorLinux 6.0 Standard Edition

        Ten years after the first release, the VectorLinux team announced a new version of the Standard Edition. The 6th generation of the Linux operating system has an installer with Graphical User Interface for the first time, developed by Moises Henriquez (M0E-lnx) and Uel Archuletta (uelsk8s). We have delivered a stable, clean and fast Operating system, that is easy to install, configure, and use.

      • eBox 1.4-2
      • CentOS 5.5
      • Toorox – Linux Live System: 05.2010

        Content:

        * Kernel 2.6.33-gentoo
        * KDE 4.4.3
        * Xorg-Server 1.7.6
        * OpenOffice 3.2.0
        * VLC 1.0.6
        * IceCat 3.6.3
        * Thunderbird 3.04
        * K3b 1.91.0_rc2
        * Gimp 2.6.8
        * Wine 1.1.43
        * Amarok 2.2.1
        * Audacious 2.3.0.90
        * Ardour 2.8.2
        * Kino 1.3.3
        * Cinelerra 20100320
        * …

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Rocking Out With A Linux Guitar

      By working the LCD screen with one hand and pressing down on virtual strings on the neck of the instrument, you can create synthesized sounds. For guitar geeks, this looks like a great gift, but there isn’t any price cited yet.

    • Nokia

      • What does Nokia need to do to become relevant again?

        3) Ditch Symbian for smartphones: Nokia claims that Symbian “democratises the smartphone market”. They’re saying that open source programmes make their phones more customisable and more relevant to a larger audience than, say, an iPhone. But Android is already by some measures outselling the Apple iPhone, it’s already open source and it’s already very good, when HTC design with it at least. Symbian 4 is, by virtue of its arrival later this year, surely not able to be a patch on Android 1.6, never mind the newer 2.1, and equally poor in comparison to iPhone OS3. What’s the point in backing the Symbian horse? Insiders say forthcoming OS Meego will be great. It’s too little, too late, when Android is already streaks ahead and Windows Phone 7 Series is on the way. (I’d love, by the way, to be proved wrong, but “the open source OS” Symbian 4 is currently a secret – you can take a look here at Mashable, however.

    • Android

      • 65,000 Android phones shipping every day: Google

        At least 65,000 mobile phones powered by Google’s Android operating system are being shipped every day, Google chief executive Eric Schmidt said Thursday.

      • Android is for real

        As for Android, even if it was helped along by Apple-like advertising campaigns and two-for-one offers, the Linux-based, Apache-licensed mobile OS has undoubtedly made the biggest strides in the modern smartphone market we’ve seen since iPhone. I recall immense skepticism when we indicated in our CAOS report Mobility Matters way back in November 2008 that the first Android phone on the market, the G1, represented an impressive first step and a sign of fast, carrier-supported development and advancement thanks in large part to open source. Regardless of how significant its device maker and carrier support, including two for one deals, Android has done better than expected in the market. It certainly marks the furthest a mobile OS based on Linux has ever gone.

      • Michael Dell Confirms Streak 5 for AT&T This Summer

        Michael Dell, CEO, took to the stage yesterday for a keynote speech at the Citrix Synergy conference where he promptly teased the crowd with a demo of the Streak 5 tablet phone. The 5-inch device features a 5-megapixel camera, a 800X480 touch display with 5 inches viewable screen, and a customized build of Android. We aren’t sure what version of Android the Streak 5 will have. Our first glimpse of the device had 1.6 on it but enough time has passed to get 2.1 loaded.

      • NTT DoCoMo’s Best Selling Smart Phone Ever is Probably Sony Ericsson Xperia X10

        We’ve given the Sony Ericsson Xperia a rough go at things here on the site and on some of our podcasts. To sum things up we’d have to say we’re disappointed all around. We wish it was more responsive in their Mediascape and Timescape apps, we wish it had something newer than Android 1.6, we wish it would hit the US at some point, etc… Just a general sense of letdown.

      • DROID Does More Commercials

        Droid Does Augmented reality! Well, technically most Android devices can “do” augmented reality. However, none of the other carriers and/or manufacturers are promoting the sheer amount and variety of Android apps that are available. Even if you think the videos are too industrial or crass, you have to admit that Verizon is helping to gain visibility for our little, green buddy.

      • Android Rips Up Google to Reveal a Nexus One Easter Egg

        Google sure does love its easter eggs, and here in the UK Android fans are treated to a very special sight when “meet Android” is typed and “I’m feeling lucky” hit.

    • Tablets

      • Verizon: We’re making a tablet with Google

        Google released a statement: “Android is a free, open source mobile platform. This means that anyone can take the Android platform and add code or download it to create a mobile device without restrictions. The Android smartphone platform was designed from the beginning to scale downward to feature phones and upward to MID and netbook-style devices. We look forward to seeing what contributions are made and how an open platform spurs innovation, but we have nothing to announce at this time.”

Free Software/Open Source

  • Open Source Predicted to Experience High Growth in 2010

    A new survey by one of Europe’s specialist pan European headhunting companies in the software space, predicts Open Source will be a good bet to achieve high growth this year.

  • Make Your Own Creative Suite With Free Open Source Software

    When you’re getting started with web design, industry standard software such as Adobe’s Creative Suite is often far out of your budget. Fortunately there are many Open Source alternatives that go a long way towards putting together a solid suite of design tools.

    Alternative To Photoshop: GIMP

    GIMP or GNU Image Manipulation Program started in 1995 and is probably the best known Open Source image editor. It has powerful painting tools, layers and channels support, multiple undo/redo, editable text layers. There is a huge supportive community around GIMP with many plug-ins to allow easy extension of it’s functionality. Gimp can import native Photoshop files and can read scalable vector graphics (SVG) files.

  • Events

  • SaaS

    • Yahoo! to open source floating Google-Amazon crossbreed

      Known simply as “Cloud” within the company, the platform is that piece of Yahoo! infrastructure that serves up its online applications. In short, it provides the company’s internal developers with on-demand access to computing resources. But rather than offering raw virtual machines as Amazon EC2 does, it spins up “containers” of server power that are pre-configured for things like load-balancing and security. That way, developers needn’t handle the load-balancing on their own.

  • Databases

  • Healthcare

    • IAC to VA: Modernize VistA

      The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) should commit to and announce as a matter of strategic policy a plan to move to an open source, open standards model for the re-engineering of the next generation of the department’s integrated health information system, VistA, according to a new report from the Industry Advisory Council (IAC). The 100-page report from the Washington, D.C.-based IAC provided recommendations to VA on how to modernize VistA (VA Health Information Systems and Technology Architecture).

    • A Look Into the Mind: WiseWindow Leverages Open Source, Cloud Computing to Gauge Opinions

      I understand Rajiv has been named advisor and architect for a new open source project funded by the National Institute of Health and executed by Caltech. What is the goal of this effort and what exactly does it have to do with open source?

      Dulepet: The goal of this effort is to provide scientists an open platform for bio-medical research where they can share analytical applications and data with their colleagues.

  • Business

  • Government

    • Whitehall’s new IT minister, who’s it gonna be?

      Whomever is handed the government’s IT portfolio will, among other duties, be responsible for overseeing the Cabinet Office’s open source and open standards software procurement policy, which the previous Labour administration rejigged under then IT minister Angela Smith in January this year.

    • UK hot-swaps leaders – Brown out, Cameron in

      The Tories also look like following many European and US authorities on open source and open standards. The party has promised to make government data available upon request in open-standard formats.

    • Tories and Lib Dems form coalition government

      The Conservative and Liberal Democrat parties, both of which opposed ID cards and favour open source, have formed a coalition government.

      [...]

      Both parties are keen on open-source software. The Tories have backed the use of open standards in major government IT projects, which they say will create a “level playing field” for open source, and the Lib Dems have sung the praises of open source’s cost benefits.

    • New Government: Tory-Lib Dem Coalition Will Agree On Most Public Sector ICT Issues
    • Goodbye Gordon: The Labour Tech Legacy

      7. Open source government

      Brown’s government was one of the first to use open source tech to help the public sector cut IT costs during the economic downturn. The decision to encourage greater use of open source was based on the need for greater support for community development by IT vendors, and some commentators claimed savings could be as much as £600 million a year.

      However, Britain has been found to be lagging behind many other countries when it comes to open source, and many open source vendors have criticised the policy as toothless. Meanwhile, the European Commission has warned that any progress in using open source and open standards will have to be tempered against the possibility that the software could have downsides in terms of security.

    • European Commission Releases New Version of Open e-PRIOR To Push eProcurement Across EU

      The Directorate-General for Informatics (DIGIT) has recently announced that a new version of Open e-PRIOR, the open-source version of the e-PRIOR (electronic PRocurement, Invoicing and Ordering) platform has been published on the Open Source Observatory and Repository for European public administrations (OSOR.eu).

  • Open Data

    • Cory Doctorow, geek culture icon (Q&A)

      From his home in England, the Canadian-born Doctorow, a Hugo Award nominee, is one of the most prolific writers going, constantly turning out blog posts, magazine articles, novels, and everything in between. And he travels more in a year than most people will in a lifetime.

      His Boing Boing posts can cover issues from the fact that there are now at least 13 open-source hardware companies making $1 million or more annually, to anything related to Net neutrality, to the current battle over the U.S. Federal Communications Committee’s decision to give Hollywood permission to activate the so-called “Selective Output Control” technologies in consumers’ set-top boxes.

  • Open Hardware

  • Open Access/Content

  • Programming

  • Standards/Consortia

    • Technology: Beautifully Rendered Music Notation With HTML5

      An anonymous reader writes “This is incredible. This guy has built a music notation engraver entirely in JavaScript, allowing for real-time music editing right in the browser. Here’s a demo. The library has no external dependencies, and all the glyphs, scores, beams, ties, etc. are positioned and rendered entirely in JavaScript.”

Leftovers

  • Feds to examine ways to jam prisoners’ illicit cell phone calls

    Federal regulators are now seeking input on ways they can jam signals or otherwise crack down on prisoners who smuggle and use cell phones in federal jails.

  • Successful Businesses Focus On Innovating

    Anyone working at a small company has likely experienced the time distractions of playing phone tag and chasing down late payments. These diversions can drain enthusiasm and energy that could otherwise be put to better use. Given this common problem, we’re on the lookout for how others in small businesses are creating innovative projects. Software as a service offerings are often cited as examples for saving time — allowing small companies to focus on their own tasks, rather than dealing with maintaining IT resources and installing software packages.

  • Science

    • NASA’s moon program gets a boost from Congress

      Two Republican lawmakers today moved to block White House efforts to kill NASA’s Constellation program, adding an amendment to a broad budget bill that prohibits NASA from taking steps to terminate efforts to return astronauts to the moon.

      The provision, inserted in an emergency spending bill aimed at funding military operations in Afghanistan, is the latest salvo in a months-long battle between Congress and the White House on what to do with NASA after the agency retires the space shuttle fleet at the end of the year.

  • Security/Aggression

    • Inside Sourcefire’s Vulnerability Research Team

      In many IT security shops, administrators rely on open-source tools to keep up with the malware bad guys continue to toss their way. One industry favorite is Sourcefire, parent of the Snort IDS tool and ClamAV.

    • Friday Funnies
    • Single group did 66% of world’s phishing

      A single criminal operation was responsible for two-thirds of all phishing attacks in the second half of 2009 and is responsible for a two-fold increase in the crime, a report published this week said.

    • Report reveals DNA sample failings by police in London

      Failings in the way police officers in London dealt with DNA samples linked to violent crime, rape and murder have been highlighted in a report.

      The inspection found samples had been left in a freezer at two police stations in Hackney, east London, instead of being sent for analysis.

  • Finance

    • Goldman Sachs Defending “Hot News” Claim in New York Court

      From DarkReading.com, a story about a federal lawsuit against Goldman Sachs and several unknown Goldman Sachs employees who allegedly logged into, and stole thousands of records from, the plaintiff’s database of investor contact information. The database was protected by a restrictive license and by passwords.

      The lawsuit has several aspects that make it worth watching. First, the plaintiffs claim that Goldman Sachs should be liable for its employees’ violations of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act. Few cases discuss the circumstances under which an employer can be held liable for an employee’s CFAA violations. Cases like Butera & Andrews v. IBM Inc., No. 1:06-CV-647 (D.D.C. Oct. 18, 2006), create a high hurdle for plaintiffs, stating that intentional conduct on the part of the company must be proven to create CFAA liability.

  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

    • Facebook founder called trusting users dumb f*cks

      Loveable Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg called his first few thousand users “dumb fucks” for trusting him with their data, published IM transcripts show. Facebook hasn’t disputed the authenticity of the transcript.

    • Facebook Should Follow Its Own Principles

      About a year ago, Facebook suffered a tremendous consumer backlash over its changes to the Terms of Service. To quell the uproar, Facebook introduced a set of Principles. Through a “Facebook site governance” vote, users voted on whether these Principles should serve as the foundation for governing the site.” At the time, the company trumpeted the success of the vote, by which about 75% of voters selected the new Facebook Principles: “We strongly believe that our proposed documents satisfied the concerns raised in February.” As Facebook explains, the Principles are “the foundation of the rights and responsibilities of those within the Facebook Service.” A year later, the foundation is cracking.

      Now Facebook flatly contradicts its own stated Principles. The contradictions are clearly shown in Facebook’s widely panned ([1][2][3][4][5]) response to New York Times readers’ questions on the social network’s brave new privacy practices. A reader asked Elliot Schrage, Facebook’s vice president for public policy, the key question: “Why can’t I control my own information anymore?”

    • Why Open Alternatives Are Bound To Challenge Facebook

      Still, as we’ve noted before, both Facebook and Twitter suffer from the fundamental problem that they are closed systems. They harken back to the early days of email, when you had to be on, say, MCI Mail, or CompuServe, to send another computer user a message. Facebook and Twitter are walled gardens that don’t allow users enough control over their interaction with others. Diaspora is unlikely to ever threaten Facebook’s dominance, but the welcome it has received in such a short time shows how fed up people are with Facebook’s policies. In the long run, Facebook will likely face more serious challenges from open alternatives to its service.

    • Facebook ID theft Mr Big just a sprat, says social network
    • VA Continues Its Annual Tradition Of Losing Laptop With Unencrypted Sensitive Data

      When we last checked in with the Veterans Administration (VA) it was to suggest that it rename itself the “Ministry of Data Leaks.” That’s because every year or so they admit that they’ve lost a computer that happens to contain unencrypted personal data on VA members. And, each report seems to get worse than the previous one. So you would think that, by now, the VA would have at least put in place some system to encrypt and protect the data it stores. That would be wishful thinking. It’s now come out that the VA has had two major data breaches in just the last month — both involving laptops that had unencrypted data.

    • Google Admits It Was Accidentally Collecting Some Open WiFi Data

      There’s no way around the fact that Google should not have done this, and in doing so, it’s just handed years worth of “evidence” of Google’s evil nature to the company’s critics. In context, however, it’s still not clear that what Google did was really that bad. Anyone using a WiFi network can similarly see unencrypted data used by others on that same access point. It happens all the time — which is why if you are using a shared network, you should always encrypt your traffic — and most sensitive websites (webmail, banks, etc.) automatically encrypt the traffic. On top of that, as Google notes, since the data collected came from cars driving around, they were not connected to any particular WiFi network for very long at all.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Hollywood backs Viacom in Google legal fight

      Ever since Viacom first filed a lawsuit accusing Google’s YouTube of violating copyright law, most of Hollywood has appeared determined to stay neutral. That seems to be changing.

    • Subway To Everyone Else: Stop Selling ‘Footlong’ Sandwiches

      Last week, the restaurant got a letter from a lawyer representing Subway, which, as you may have heard, sells 12-inch sandwiches for five bucks.

      After explaining that Subway “has applied for the trademark FOOTLONG (TM) in association with sandwiches,” the letter says:

      You are hereby put on notice to cease and desist from using FOOTLONG (TM) association with sandwiches. You must immediately remove all references to FOOTLONG (TM) in association with sandwiches.

    • Viacom Still Not Getting It — Files Bogus Takedown And Kills Some Free Transformers Buzz

      Yes, it appears Paramount promptly filed a DMCA takedown — which seems like a fantastic way to kill excitement for the movie. According to the takedown, Brown’s video “matched third party content,” which, of course, is impossible since Transformers 3 has yet to be finished (let alone released) and obviously Brown took the video himself. The filming took place in a public alley, so anyone around is totally free to take pictures or video and share them.

      Now, not only is it ridiculous to claim that these videos are covered under Paramount’s copyright, it’s hard to fathom why Paramount would want to bother quashing these videos at all. After Brown and Krimmel posted their videos, entertainment blogs picked the story up and started to build buzz about the movie. Isn’t that a good thing?

    • Copyrights

      • Public Knowledge Proposes Changes To Copyright Technical Protection Law

        In the second part of its Copyright Reform Act project, Public Knowledge (PK) today suggested critical changes to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) to correct crucial flaws in the law’s section that covers permissible circumvention of technological protection measures.

        The latest PK report about Section 1201 of the DMCA found that the law “fails to appropriately distinguish between circumvention for lawful purposes and circumvention for unlawful purposes, causing a range of harmful effects to befall creators, consumers, researchers, innovators, and competitors.” At the same time, the report found, that the “anti-circumvention provisions have failed to provide copyright owners adequate relief from large-scale infringement.”

      • Shepard Fairey: OBEY my lawyers

        What do you do if you’re a street artist turned marketing phenom who uses other people’s images when someone uses one of your designs? If you’re Shepard Fairey, apparently, you call your lawyers.

        Fairey, of Obama HOPE poster fame, is defending himself against charges he infringed on an Associated Press copyrighted photo in making the poster. He’s also been criticized by artists for using others’ work without attribution (see background here and here). His lawyers claim in the AP case that he is protected by fair use provisions of the copyright law.

      • Has Shepard Fairey Learned That He’s Been Hypocritical When It Comes To Others Appropriating His Works?

        But there’s another part of Fairey’s actions that has been equally troubling: he’s been known to aggressively go after others for copying his work, despite the fact that the entire basis of his work is appropriation art. Fairey has used his lawyers in a manner not unlike the recent case we wrote about involving the estate of appropriation artist Roy Lichtenstein threatening a band for using an image that was copied not from Lichtenstein’s painting, but from the same original source material.

      • The Music Industry Needs Fair and Open Markets, Not Regulation

        This is the ORG website; you are not likely to find here the usual complaints about freeloading filesharers destroying opportunities for artists and blighting the creative industries’ digital future. Instead here’s a much more pro-business and pro-artist agenda for the five year coalition to consider, and it is one which does not need mass surveillance, consumer ‘education’ campaigns, and regulation. Nor does it require Ofcom to spend millions of pounds of public money studying how close Sisyphus is to the top of the mountain.

Clip of the Day

NASA Connect – AATC – Future NASA Technology (2001)


Links 15/5/2010: Haiku OS Second Alpha; Ubuntu 10.10 Plans

Posted in News Roundup at 4:41 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Desktop

    • Printing via Bluetooth – Linux vs. Windows

      So, there’s another example. If kicking a dead whale down the beach is your thing, then just keep on using Windows, and fighting it at every turn. But if real, continuing, useful development is more what you are interested in, and if you want every new release to be really better than the previous one, not just arbitrarily different from the previous one, then you really need to be using Linux.

    • Frustrations of supporting Windows

      So I am seriously contemplating migrating other relatives to Linux as well. There is the initial learning curve, but I think most users will adapt and find their way. Linux (Gnome desktop environment; I haven’t touched KDE in years) is laid out in a very logical manner. And, the reduction in support calls to me adds the winning touch. One of the more aggravating things is the time wasted not only on their end, waiting while their computer is down and being fixed, but my time that is flushed down the drain fixing these constant problems.

  • Server

    • CloudLinux: Catching On With Hosting Partners?

      First, the hard news: Canadian Web Hosting, in business since 1998, has embraced CloudLinux as one of the hosting company’s standard Linux platform offerings. The reason apparently involves Cloud Linux Inc.’s Lightweight Virtual Environment (LVE) technology.

      [...]

      Can CloudLinux carve out its own niche among hosting providers? Canadian Web Hosting sure seems to think so.

  • Audiocasts

  • Ballnux

    • Verizon launches LG’s first U.S.-bound Android phone

      Verizon Wireless and LG Electronics MobileComm U.S.A. have launched the first U.S.-destined Android smartphone from LG, previously promoted with the movie “Iron Man 2.” The mid-range LG Ally offers a 3.2-inch touchscreen, slider QWERTY keyboard, 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth 2.1, S-GPS, and a 3.2-megapixel camera, says Verizon.

  • Kernel Space

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • Open Letter: The issues with client-side-window-decorations
    • K Desktop Environment (KDE SC)

      • Akademy 2010 Conference Program Available

        This year’s Akademy conference program includes many exciting talks regarding the KDE community, development, applications, platforms, mobile computing, and cloud computing. The conference will open on day 1 with a keynote from Valtteri Halla (Nokia) who will speak about MeeGo redefining the Linux desktop landscape. On day 2, long-time KDE contributor and visionary Aaron Seigo will give the midday keynote and discuss the future of Free Software and the KDE community.

      • Javascript animations

        We’re now into the complete-and-stabilize phase of the 4.5 development cycle, so things are settling in a bit more and blogging about some of the features becomes easier. I’m writing an article for publication on TheDot about the new activities features that we’re working on, but I also wanted to say something about another feature set that’s not quite so user-visible: using Javascript for animations.

      • Some Issues I found with Dual Monitors in KDE
  • Distributions

    • Slackage Management, Baby!

      There are those who say that Slackware Linux doesn’t really have a package manager. BAH! I say. It has two package management systems, actually.

    • An afternoon in Tiny Core

      The developers of Tiny Core are clearly doing a very good, innovative thing here. I’ve met Robert Shingledecker at a couple of SCALE shows in L.A., and I’m glad to see him working on this project and being able to do it the way he wants.

    • My PCLinuxOS Snapshot.

      this my pclinuxos 2010 operating system. on TOshiba satellite a100

    • Debian Family

      • Debian Repository List
      • Ubuntu

        • Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx – Job very well done

          I’m utterly pleased with Lucid Lynx. It is a professional, commercial-grade Linux distribution on par with anything Microsoft and Apple can offer, except it comes for free, a huge bonus.

          Lucid Lynx has been done with style, grace and care, and it shows in every little detail. Hardware support and compatibility are phenomenal. Performance has been improved compared to previous version and there are no stability issues. Furthermore, Ubuntu 10.04 sports beautiful new looks that make it a daring rival to Mac’s poshness and leaves the Windows baby-blue sickness a light year behind.

          Lucid Lynx offers three years of support for desktop, which means that you can install now and think about upgrading only in 2013. This is extremely important for more conservative users, like myself.

          This is by far the best Ubuntu release since I started taking interest in the distribution, way back with Dapper in June 2006. While you do not get everything out of the box as some other distributions like Mint or PCLinuxOS offer, the overall quality and integration surpasses the slight inconvenience of the extra few minutes of downloads and configurations. And you still have a better, faster, more secure system than other market rivals, for absolute zero cost.

          My RD510 laptop currently sports three Jaunty installations. I will soon be phasing them out and have them replaced with Lucid. The long wait for perfect Ubuntu has been worth waiting. Lucid Lynx is that Ubuntu.

        • Ubuntu Learns New Tricks, Forgets Some Old Ones With Lucid Lynx Upgrade
        • Ubuntu Linux is Prime Time for your Business Desktop and Notebook Computing Environment

          As a business consultant, web designer and photographer my technical know-how around doing system administration on my Microsoft desktop is limited and sometimes I do require the assistant of my computer engineering son to get it right. In a Microsoft Environment, keeping updated with respect to potential security breaches and patches is a constant vigil. The rigor of keeping current with OS updates, Norton updates and Spyware updates is time consuming. Valuable business hours each week are spend and lost on this task of self-administration dictated by the Microsoft Operating Environment.

          [...]

          Now the Linux called Ubuntu is installed on my notebook. Ubuntu by Canonical is a full Open Source Linux based on Debian Linux. Ubuntu is now available on Dell systems and Federal Governments are adding this Linux operating environment to their list of standard available OS’s for all desktop and notebook computers.

        • Ubuntu Lucid checkup — my now-healthy desktop
        • Social From the Start
        • Ubuntu 10.10

          • Making 10.10 a perfect 10/10 – Evolution
          • The X.Org, Mesa Plans For Ubuntu 10.10

            The talk at the Ubuntu Developer Summit surrounding the X.Org plans for Ubuntu 10.10 just wrapped up. Compared to the Ubuntu 10.04 LTS release, Ubuntu 10.10 should provide a much more recent and up-to-date graphics experience.

          • Rekonq to be Kubuntu 10.10′s default browser

            We’re hearing that Kubuntu 10.10 will see Rekonq installed as the default browser.

          • Btrfs May Be The Default File-System In Ubuntu 10.10

            Earlier this week we reported that Ubuntu has plans for the Btrfs file-system in 2011 and 2012 by providing support for installing Ubuntu Linux to a Btrfs file-system. This information was based upon documents coming out of the Ubuntu Developer Summit in Brussels, but it turns out that Canonical may actually deploy Btrfs this year. Not only to provide an installation option within the installer for Btrfs, but to make it the default file-system.

        • Variants

          • Peppermint OS Puts Its Pedal to the Metal

            Peppermint OS, a lightweight distro based on Ubuntu, launched on Monday. “The decision was to concentrate on speed over everything else,” said Kendall Weaver, lead developer for Peppermint OS. Toward that end, the development team preintegrated the major Web apps and got permission from Seesmic to integrate its Web app as a Twitter client.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • VXL fires thin client fusillade

      All seven of the thin clients are also available in similar versions that run Windows CE 6.0, Windows XP Embedded, or Windows Embedded Standard, says the company. The Linux thin clients run a Linux GIO2 distribution based on Linux 2.6, which appears to be a VXL creation.

    • Network video recorder, powered by Linux, ultra stable and loaded with features

      QNAP VS-5020 VioStor NVR (Network Video Recorder) is a high performance network video surveillance system for high-end IP-based real-time monitoring and video recording. Powered by Intel 1.6GHz CPU and 1GB DDRII memory, the Linux-embedded NVR supports 20-channel H.264, MxPEG, MPEG-4 and M-JPEG recording

    • Linux-ready 32-core SoCs offer real-time power optimization

      Linux development partners include Wind River, and Cavium’s own subsidiary, MontaVista Software, LLC. The latter announced specific support in MontaVista Carrier Grade Edition (CGE) Linux for the new processors.

    • Nokia

      • Intel gives first look at MeeGo interface

        MeeGo has been given its first proper outing at Intel’s Developer Forum in Beijing.

        While Nokia and Intel announced the merger of Moblin and Maemo back at Mobile World Congress in February, there were no demos at the event and only minimal details.

      • Workshops tackle Qt, Linux, and i.MX development

        Future Electronics and Nokia will host six full-day, hands-on workshops across the North America on using Linux and Nokia’s Qt development framework to develop user interfaces (UIs) for Freescale’s ARM-based i.MX system-on-chips (SoCs). Starting in Boston on May 18, the workshops will use the Freescale i.MX23 SoC as its sample platform.

      • The Qt Virtual Framebuffer
    • Android

    • Sub-notebooks

      • Linux Netbook Operating systems – A list

        It is a proven fact that most Linux operating systems, if not all run like a duck soup on the netbooks now. That is why, it makes perfect sense to install them as a secondary operating system. We have compiled a list of compatible distros for the netbooks which support the hardware of the netbooks; are easy to install and run at acceptable speed.

      • Acer to “launch Chrome netbook next month”

        Acer is preparing to launch devices based on Google’s Chrome OS at next month’s Computex trade show, according to reports.

        The VentureBeat website claims it’s been told by “multiple sources” that Acer plans to unveil the Chrome devices at the Taipei show, which runs from 1 to 5 June.

      • South African netbook runs Ubuntu Linux

        South Africa-based mobile provider Vodacom has begun selling an Ubuntu Linux based netbook. The Linkbook, which was developed by a South African company of the same name, is equipped with 16GB of flash storage, HSDPA, WiFi, two USB ports, and an 8.9-inch display, says Vodacom.

Free Software/Open Source

Leftovers

  • Haiku OS Makes Way With Second Alpha
  • BeOS successor Haiku now in R1/Alpha 2
  • Science

    • NASA Planning Robotic Landing In 2014

      Managers at NASA headquarters are “pursuing” a robotic landing on the Moon or “other planetary body” within about four years to test precision landing and perhaps other technologies that will be needed to enable deep space exploration under the Obama administration’s emerging space policy.

  • Security/Aggression

    • EXCLUSIVE VIDEO INTERVIEW: Ex-CIA Official Reveals New Details About Torture, Plame Leak

      In a wide-ranging video interview with Truthout, former CIA counterterrorism official John Kiriakou reveals new information about the capture and torture of “high-value” detainee Abu Zubaydah and discloses, for the first time, his role in the events that led to the leak of covert CIA operative Valerie Plame.

    • Ukrainian arrested in India on TJX data-theft charges

      A Ukrainian national has been arrested in India in connection with the most notorious hacking incident in U.S. history.

      Sergey Valeryevich Storchark was one of 11 men charged in August 2008 with hacking into nine U.S. retailers and selling tens of millions of credit card numbers. He was arrested in India earlier this week, according to a spokesman with India’s Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).

    • U.S. Not Winning Cyber War

      The United States is losing enough data in cyber attacks to fill the Library of Congress many times over, and authorities have failed to stay ahead of the threat, a U.S. defense official said on Wednesday.

      More than 100 foreign spy agencies were working to gain access to U.S. computer systems, as were criminal organizations, said James Miller, principal deputy under secretary of defense for policy.

      Terrorist groups also had cyber attack capabilities.

      [...]

      Miller took an example from the Cold War playbook to explain how the United States military would need to prepare for fallout from a cyber attack, which could leave cities in the dark or disrupt communications.

  • Environment

    • Bursting in Bhutan: A Small Country Adapts to Global Warming

      I’m going to bet you’ve never heard of a GLOF. I hadn’t, until last week, when I was introduced to the idea of Glacial Lake Outburst Floods, a direct impact of climate change in the Himalayas, and specifically in the tiny kingdom of Bhutan.

      If you’ve heard of Bhutan, it’s probably because the country measures the health of its society by Gross National Happiness rather than by Gross National Product. More interesting to me is how the Bhutanese people are attempting to manage some of the near term dangers from climate change, specifically those caused by glacial lakes bursting their natural dams. It’s a poignant example of how short term adaptation is the only path available to countries and people already feeling the pain of climate change.

    • BP boss admits job on the line over Gulf oil spill

      Tony Hayward, the beleaguered chief executive of BP, has claimed its oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico is “relatively tiny” compared with the “very big ocean”.

    • Gulf oil spill: firms ignored warning signs before blast, inquiry hears

      Documents suggest BP, Transocean and Halliburton ignored tests indicating faulty safety equipment, says committee

    • A volcano of oil erupting

      New video showing largest hole from pipe 5 feet in diameter spewing oil and natural gas at ~4 barrels per second, along with analysis of the amount of oil on the surface, supports the estimates closer to 1 million barrels per day erupting from this hole BP popped in the ocean floor that contains trillions of barrels of oil and natural gas.

  • Monsanto

    • Scientists call for GM review after surge in pests around cotton farms in China

      Farmland struck by infestations of bugs following widespread adoption of Bt cotton made by biotech giant Monsanto

    • Weed resistance could mean herbicide is futile

      THE world’s most popular herbicide is losing its knockout punch. More and more weeds are evolving resistance to glyphosate – originally marketed by Monsanto as Roundup – but the problem could have been forestalled by farming practices enriched by a better understanding of evolution.

      This is a serious problem. “Glyphosate is as important to world food production as penicillin is to human health,” says Stephen Powles, a plant scientist at the University of Western Australia in Perth.

  • Finance

    • President Obama rips, raises cash from Wall St.

      President Barack Obama Wednesday went from his White House to Main Street tour of Buffalo to raising money for Democrats from Wall Street executives in Manhattan, even as he continued to blame them for the economic crisis and to seek sweeping industry reforms in Congress.

      “We’re engaged in a debate right now about common-sense Wall Street reform,” Obama said at the $15,000-a-person fundraiser Thursday night. “I was in Wall Street just a few weeks ago, and I said I believe in the power of the free market. … But when these institutions operate irresponsibly, they … threaten the entire economy, along with the dreams of millions of Americans who worked so hard to make a life for themselves.”

    • Senate passes amendment on debit and credit card swipe fees
    • CEOs from far and wide band against financial bill provision
    • Time for Regulators to Impose Order in the Markets

      The regulators are still trying to figure out just what set off the crazy trading a week ago Thursday, but some facts are obvious. If a stock goes from $40 to one cent to $40 within a few minutes, somebody messed up.

    • With Banks Under Fire, Some Expect a Settlement

      It is starting to feel as if everyone on Wall Street is under investigation by someone for something.

    • N.Y. Attorney General Cuomo opens probe to learn if 8 banks misled credit raters

      New York Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo has launched a probe into eight large banks to determine whether they provided misleading information to credit-rating agencies, according to sources with knowledge of the investigation.

    • The do-nothing (but politics) House

      Democrats say they’re just waiting for the Senate to start moving the pile of legislation that’s stacked up on its doorstep, and, with little of substance left on the agenda, they’re letting their members go home to prepare for the November election.

    • Companies Dodge $60 Billion in Taxes Even Tea Party Condemns

      Tyler Hurst swiped his debit card at a Walgreens pharmacy in central Phoenix and kicked off an international odyssey of corporate tax avoidance.

      Hurst went home with an amber bottle of Lexapro, the world’s third-best selling antidepressant. The profits from his $99 purchase began a 9,400-mile journey that would lead across the Atlantic Ocean and more than halfway back again, to a grassy industrial park in Dublin, a glass skyscraper in Amsterdam and a law office in Bermuda surrounded by palm trees.

    • Tax bills in 2009 at lowest level since 1950

      Amid complaints about high taxes and calls for a smaller government, Americans paid their lowest level of taxes last year since Harry Truman’s presidency, a USA TODAY analysis of federal data found.

    • Employee Poaching Returns to Wall Street

      Nearly three-quarters of Wall Street employees say they have been approached at least once by headhunters since the beginning of the year, according to a survey from eFinancialCareers, a recruitment Web site. Also, 44% of respondents said the number of calls they have received is up from last year.

    • Half of America Hates Goldman Sachs
    • King World News

      There is one other flaw in the EU plan. In 1992, when George Soros attacked the Bank of England, he did so by selling Sterling and buying dollars. This forced the Bank of England to do the opposite which was to buy Sterling and sell dollars. Since the Bank of England had a finite amount of dollars to sell, Soros knew he could beat them by buying more than they had. However, he needed real money to do this and he was perhaps the only speculator in the world at that time with that much money. Today you do not need money to destroy national finances, you can do this by the creation of synthetic short positions in Euros through the use of credit default swaps (CDS) and other derivative instruments. Goldman Sachs are experts at this. And they can create CDS in potentially infinite amounts since there is no regulation and no margin requirements. In effect, Goldman could create a short position equal to ten times the amount of Euros in the guarantee fund. Goldman can create synthetic short positions faster than the ECB can print money. Therefore, the ECB’s plan is doomed to fail because they cannot beat the speculators who can use CDS instead of real money.

    • Shiller: “The Real Worry Is That We’ll Grow Slowly Until We Run Into The Next Recession.”

      Yale Professor Robert J. Shiller spoke to the National Economists Club at lunch today in Washington, D.C. He expressed concern of slow growth until the next recession, his definition of a double-dip. His 20-city Case-Shiller real home price index declined 35% from its 2006 peak until early 2009, when Fed mortgage backed securities purchases and the homebuyer tax credit pushed it back up just over half as much, but he expects further housing price declines with the expiration of those government interventions on March 31 and April 30 respectively.

    • Portugal Follows Spain on Austerity Cuts

      To help restore investor confidence, José Sócrates, the Socialist prime minister, will rely on tax increases and cuts in wages and corporate subsidies to erase an additional €2.1 billion, or $2.7 billion, from the deficit. “These measures are necessary to obtain what’s essential, the financing of the Portuguese economy, but also to defend the euro,” Mr. Sócrates said.

  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

    • EU Is The Latest To Criticize Facebook’s Privacy Changes

      From the group’s press release: “The Working Party emphasised the need for a default setting in which access to the profile information and information about the connections of a user is limited to self-selected contacts. Any further access, such as by search engines, should be an explicit choice of the user.” Unclear what steps the Article 29 Working Party could take next; the group has also criticized Google (NSDQ: GOOG) over Street View and has taken a hard look at behavioral ad targeting practices.

    • Facebook: Privacy, the exodus, and Diaspora
    • Diaspora about to hit $100,000 in donations
    • Diaspora, The Open Facebook Alternative, Soars Past $50,000 In Micro-Funding [Update: Now Past $100,000]
    • Open Facebook Alternatives Gain Momentum, $115K
    • Internet connection (finally) restored in Xinjiang

      After 312 days of life under the murky veil of heavily restricted (and mostly non-existent) Internet, Xinjiang is plugged back into the world wide web. The local government announced today that Internet connection was restored to “meet the needs of maintaining stability, boosting social and economic development and the calls from all ethnic groups.”

    • Will UK civil service scupper civil liberties reform?

      Google, Facebook and the pressure group Privacy International this week welcomed the raft of civil liberties measures announced by the UK’s incoming Conservative-Liberal coalition government. But some of the plans could founder on the rocks of what Privacy International calls the “real opposition”: not the Labour party, but an intransigent, security-obsessed civil service.

    • Mordechai Vanunu Jailed Again

      The British government, mainstream parties and the mainstream media never mention Israel’s nuclear weapons, even when pontificating about the effect of potential Iranian nuclear weapons on the balance of power in the Middle East.

      Consistent with that, no amount of googling brings up any British mainstream media mention of the fact that whistleblower Mordechai Vanunu has just been jailed again in Israel. This is for breaching the terms of a military edict – not a court order – restricting his movements and contacts.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • What Jon Stewart Said, I Say Too. A lot.

      DMCA, Patriot Act, ACTA, and other attacks on free speech and fair use; the RIAA gets away with statutory damage claims of $750 per “pirated” song and never have to prove actual harm; patents and “intellectual property” double-talk swallowed and regurgitated whole by a gullible, uncaring tech press; the MPAA/RIAA (MAFIAA for short) get to order the makers of DVD-players and home theater systems to cripple functionality; kids perpetrating unimportant cracks get felony convictions, while it’s OK for Sony to install rootkits–twice–Amazon can reach into your Kindle and pluck your books back out; we can’t buy the most trivial item without it being plastered with safety warning stickers, while Microsoft and the “security” industry continue to get a free pass for their corrupt symbiosis; Sony can remove features from PS3s years after they have been sold, Apple has an elite taxpayer-funded police force for their personal use. Facebook, Google, and hordes of marketing companies get away with outrageous invasions and abuses of our personal data and privacies… And on and on…

    • Should We Allow Copies of Analogue Objects?

      The parallel between digital content and software is obvious enough, which makes it relatively easy to see how media companies might function against a background of unrestricted sharing. But we are fast approaching the point where it is possible to make copies of *analogue* objects, using 3D printers like the open source RepRap system. This raises some interesting questions about what might be permitted in that situation if businesses are still to thrive.

    • Real Copyright Law And File Sharing Copyright Law

      We already wrote about the Limewire decision, which didn’t seem particularly surprising at all, given that LimeWire was basically doing the exact same things as Grokster. However, some people are noticing a few problematic parts to the ruling. While these parts alone certainly won’t change the ruling, it’s still worth noting what the judge said and questioning whether or not they’re proper. As Eric Goldman notes, he tells his students that when it comes to copyright law there’s normal copyright law, and then there’s “P2P file sharing” copyright law “and it’s a mistake to think those two legal doctrines are closely related.”

      [...]

      The second big problem is that the court says part of the reason it found inducement was because LimeWire didn’t put in place filters. But that would mean the court’s interpretation of the DMCA means that the law requires user-generated websites to install filters. The law says no such thing.

    • Argentinian Politician’s Proposal For New Anti-Plagiarism Law Plagiarizes Wikipedia

      Britxardo alerts us to an amazingly ironic story coming out of Argentina. It seems that an elected politician there, Gerónimo Vargas Aignasse, has introduced some new legislation against plagiarism (Google translation of the original). It seems odd enough that he would be outlawing plagiarism (here in the US plagiarism is socially shunned, and could cost you your job, but isn’t against the law unless it also reaches the point of copyright infringement, which is different), and it’s made even worse by the fact that it looks like he’s confusing plagiarism with copyright infringement — noting in the explanation of the bill that “plagiarism” is harming the recording industry.

    • Drugs

      • Spain confronts big pharma on drug prices

        The Spanish Government has challenged the price of patented medicines as it has taken a number of major steps announced this week to reduce the pharmaceutical expenditure of the public health system (23%). The new measures together with Spanish regional policies announced last March will mean savings of between 4 and 5 billion euros and a major reduction in the Spanish public debt that has been an important factor in shaking the confidence of world financial markets. Last Tuesday President Obama personally called Spanish President Zapatero to request major austerity measures in Spain in order to avoid a domino effect of the Greek debt crisis. The Spanish budget cuts have also been a condition demanded by the European Union.

      • KEI statement on possible WTO disputes against the EU seizures of goods in transit

        The EU seizures of medicines in transit from India to countries in Latin America and Africa were made under the European Union’s rules regarding customs measures. We are deeply concerned that these rules, and many other rules being proposed in a plethora of new trade agreements, do not protect legitimate sellers and buyers of generic medicines, when those goods move in global trade.

    • Copyrights

      • ASMP and Lessig

        That being said, I am extremely concerned about ASMP’s recent interactions with Lawrence Lessig. He was one of the speakers at the recent Copyright Symposium and, although I can understand giving “the other side” a voice, I think he needs to be ignored/silenced as much as possible. Mr. Lessig is a brilliant man, but he has done more harm to small creative businesses than any other single human in the US, in my opinion. And he continues to be dangerous.

        [...]

        Recently, however, Mr. Lessig has (sort of) changed his tune. He is now claiming that he was trying to get the idea of licensing to the masses and that his intention was to fight against the big business corporate “abuse” of copyright. I’m skeptical. While he may be anti-corporatism (a good thing in my book), I think he still does not see the needs of the little guy and, thus, his idea of balance is off.

        [...]

        I hope, most sincerely, that Mr. Lessig has indeed seen the errors of his ways and that he will now contribute to improving the lives of creative professionals. He owes it to them after the damage he has caused via CC, etc. But he has not fundamentally changed his tune, just his spin. And until he proves himself no longer a real enemy to the best interests of photographers and other small creative businesspeople (and I do not use the word “enemy” lightly!), we should not entrust him to be anything other than that which he has proven to be.

      • Usenet Community Banned From Publishing Filenames

        A court in The Netherlands has banned a Usenet community from publishing the names of files which allegedly infringe copyright. According to the judges who handled the case, Dutch site FTD – who weren’t even present at the hearing – must stop publishing the names and Usenet locations of files connected to a particular movie or face penalties of 10,000 euros per day.

    • ACTA

      • WTO responds to concerns of the European Parliament on ACTA

        In a letter dated 4 May 2010, the Director General of the World Trade Organization (WTO), Pascal Lamy has responded to questions and concerns of the European Parliament regarding the Anti Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA). Several MEPs had written to the WTO Director General on April 15 requesting the “World Trade Organization (WTO) to provide an expert assessment and analysis of the current provisions of ACTA from your institutional viewpoint as one the two specialised organisations entrusted with the issue of norm-setting in the field of intellectual property rights and related issues.”

    • Digital Economy Bill

      • Liberal Democrats take on challenge of UK 3-strikes policy

        The Digital Economy Bill will provide an immediate test for the UK’s new coalition government. Will the LibDems keep their pledge to repeal it?

        Vince Cable, Liberal Democrat economic spokesman, has been made Secretary of State for Business under the new conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition government in the UK.

      • Digital Economy Act: Some Unfinished Business

        Remember the Digital Economy Act? Yes, I thought you might. It’s still there, hanging like a proverbial sword of Damocles over our digital heads. But a funny thing happened on the way to the forum, er, Houses of Parliament: that nice Mr Clegg found himself catapulted to a position of some power.

Clip of the Day

NASA Connect – FOFE – Designing Aircraft (1/11/2001)


05.14.10

Links 14/5/2010: Linagora Acquires Mandriva; Smart TVs With Linux

Posted in News Roundup at 7:58 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Softpedia Linux Weekly, Issue 96
  • LinuxCertified Announces its Next Linux Fundamentals course W/free Linux Laptop!
  • The Family Proxy

    At this point many are likely asking how much this costs. If you read my previous article, you would know the answer right away: “It’s free and it’s on Linux”. I suppose I need to preface that last comment with the qualification that you need some old “junky but functional” hardware lying around. There are many different Linux solutions we can deploy to achieve this goal. For this article I have chosen a solution of Arch Linux, Shorewall, and Squid.

    We selected Arch Linux because it is a rolling release and has the latest and greatest packages. If you are not familiar with the phrase “rolling release”, in Linux it indicated a distribution that keeps you up-to-date with the latest software updates via the package manager. You will never have to re-install or upgrade your server from one release version to the next with this style of distribution. The great part about a rolling release on a proxy/firewall setup is that once it’s set up and working correctly, you will not have to go back and completely overhaul the server when a newer distribution update comes out.

  • 10 tech firms that should get more damn respect

    8. Linux

    It’s a movement rather than a firm, of course, but we think Linux still deserves to be here: from making netbooks work to powering Android phones and generally making Microsoft get its act together, Linux has been enormously influential. It might be considered more cool if journalists could get through just one Linux-mentioning article without also mentioning beards and hippies.

  • Facebook Censorship; Won’t Allow Ubuntu Torrent

    Facebook started blocking The Pirate Bay when the site released a new Facebook feature, reported Wired. But it seems the rabbit hole goes deeper. I tried something interesting. I asked a colleague to open The Pirate Bay and searched for a legal copy of Ubuntu Linux. He found one (It’s completely legal to download Gnu/Linux).

  • Firefighters Save Money Switiching to Ubuntu

    One of the cost saving measures fire departments can look at is fairly simple. Switch from Microsoft Windows to Linux and use the Ubuntu Distribution. All of the modern conveniences of a Windows based PC without the headaches.

  • Desktop

  • Fast Boot

    • Online in seconds flat: Quick-starting operating systems

      Second, he notes, many of the quicker operating systems, which tend to run on Linux, are less exposed to attacks than Windows, and hence fundamentally somewhat more secure. That last statement has lost some of its punch with the advent of Windows 7, however, which is better than its predecessors in this regard.

    • Sony Intros Second-Generation VAIO P

      Sony’s refreshed VAIO P introduces a couple of new features worth-mentioning, such as the built-in accelerometer, touchpad, GPS with Digital Compass, 3G and Pre-boot Linux-based OS.

  • Security/Rescue CDs

    • Analyst’s View: Antivirus Rescue CDs

      Rescue CDs work by booting into a different operating system (commonly some form of Linux), which rootkits and other threats that actively resist detection or removal are powerless against, because they never get launched.

    • Antivirus Rescue CDs for Emergency Cleanup

      Most rescue CDs actually boot into Linux, making any infestation by Windows-based malware just plain impossible.

  • Server

  • Google

  • Kernel Space

    • Linux Foundation Announces LinuxCon Brazil

      The Linux Foundation, the nonprofit organization dedicated to accelerating the growth of Linux, today announced it is expanding its premier Linux conference, LinuxCon, to Brazil. LinuxCon Brazil will take place August 31 – September 1, 2010 in Sao Paulo, Brazil.

    • Linux Foundation announces LinuxCon Brazil 2010
    • Linux Foundation Announces LinuxCon Brazil
    • Petabyte storage in a Linux distributed file system

      They do a good job with providing a 3-D model of the design and diagrams that show the components and the power wiring setup. This photo shows Tim Nufire of BackBlaze deploying pods in a rack that “contains just under half a petabyte of storage.” Pretty cool.

    • Kernel Log: New stable kernels and drivers

      At the end of April, the maintainers of the Linux kernel’s Stable Series released 2.6.32.12 and 2.6.33.3. Both versions were released three-and-a-half weeks after their respective predecessors, one containing almost 200 and the other more than 130 patches – it seems that the intervals between new stable kernel releases are becoming slightly longer, and that the number of changes integrated into the new versions is getting somewhat larger.

    • Indian Government Wants Its Own Operating System

      A US-based security expert quoted by the Times of India thinks an open source OS for Indian government computers wouldn’t be such a bad idea, but here’s the thing: There are already several Indian-developed, Linux-based operating systems, including BOSS and the education-oriented E-Swecha, the installation of which Richard Stallman helped oversee at the end of 2008. The Indian government could in theory develop an OS from the ground up without using the Linux kernel at all, but that would be wildly expensive.

  • Applications

    • LiLi USB Creator 2.5

      LiLi USB Creator is a free software for Windows that allows you to create a bootable Live USB key with Linux on it.

    • Proprietary

      • Bricsys Releases Beta Version of Bricscad V10 for LINUX

        Bricsys NV, the developer of Bricscad, announced today that the beta version of Bricscad V10 for LINUX is now available.

        Bricscad V10 is recognized as the number 1 alternative CAD platform for the DWG file format.

      • A Few Comments on Skype

        The Skype CEO recently hinted that they are considering adding mid-call advertisements. See previous paragraph re “pricing packages”. Does this mean there will be adverts running in calls you are paying for?

    • Instructionals

    • Games

      • Adventures in Linux gaming

        It has been an interesting week in the world of Linux games—really in the intersection of Linux and commercial games. First was the announcement of the release of the source code that underlies the Ryzom massively multi-player online role playing game (MMORPG). In addition, though, is word that the Humble Indie Bundle, a collection of cross-platform games being sold using a novel method, generated over $1 million in a week’s time, with roughly a quarter of it coming from Linux users. It has long been said that there is no market for Linux commercial games, but these two events may shine a light on different business models that just might be successful.

      • The video game blog for Tucson, AZ gamers

        The Humble Bundle consists of six PC/Mac/Linux games that you can purchase at whatever price you are willing to pay for them/think they are worth.

        [...]

        And then there are the people who made it into the Top 10 purchasers with leet-speak (1337 and 31337 for “leet” and “elite/eleet”). Sigh. Predictable yet somehow funny.

      • Steam bound for Linux operating systems

        According to The Telegraph, the digital distribution platform will be available to Linux users “in the coming months”.

  • Distributions

    • Linux fragmentation: good or bad?

      The consumers aren’t going to care about Linux fragmentation because they’re not going to see much of it: they’ll see “Android”, which happens to be built atop a rich stack of Linux kernel and library components. As long as their calls don’t drop and their apps run, they’ll be blissfully ignorant of any Linux fragmentation.

    • Mandrake/Mandriva Family

      • Linagora Acquires Mandriva

        Mandriva is said to have decided on this a month ago and is looking for potential buyers ever since. A potential buyer includes Linagora, which is a French open-source company. Lingaroa has also confirmed that it is going to acquire Mandriva and they have already started moving Mandriva assets.

    • Red Hat Family

    • Ubuntu

      • Ubuntu Women Project Team is Being Restructured

        The Ubuntu Women Team is being restructured and a new election process will be put in place to elect the next leaders This time though, there is not one single leader but three leaders being elected.

      • Ubuntu open to greater touch

        Canonical is looking at Ubuntu for in-car systems, tablets, set-top-boxes, and what director of business development Chris Kenyon called “the digital home or something you carry around”.

      • With Ubuntu 10.10 It May Be Easier To Run Wayland

        Beyond working towards the X Server not running as the root user and the X.Org/Mesa/Kernel upgrades planned for Ubuntu 10.10, it may also be easier to test the Wayland Display Server in this Ubuntu “Maverick Meerkat” update due out in October.

        We first talked about Wayland in late 2008 when the project was still in its infancy by Kristian Høgsberg. Wayland is still very much a side-project of Kristian’s that just receives commits every once in a while and has yet to gain any widespread adoption, but it still possesses a lot of progress. Wayland can run dual nested X.Org Servers within it, now runs off Mesa rather than Eagle EGL, supports the KMS page-flipping ioctl, a DRI2 driver is being worked on, and much more. However, it doesn’t do too much yet for the end-user, but that should change once the GTK, Qt, or Clutter tool-kits is properly supported within Wayland. Right now there’s just a basic terminal and a few demo applications that can run within this display server that leverages kernel mode-setting.

      • Variants

        • Linux Mint 9 is Expected to Release Very Soon
        • Ubuntu derivatives flourish

          Custom versions of Ubuntu can offer anything from ease-of-use to a multimedia studio

          Ubuntu 10.04, aka Lucid Lynx, has now been released and work has already started on version 10.10, its successor. But, if Ubuntu 10.04 isn’t your ideal operating system then it’s worth taking a look at some of Ubuntu’s derivative versions. Chances are that one those will suit your needs.

  • Devices/Embedded

Free Software/Open Source

  • Leading by example: Women in open source

    “It’s counter-intuitive to me,” Sanders said in a recent interview. “I would expect open source to be very open to everybody — It’s collaborative … flexible. There’s so many things I can name about open source that are beneficial.”

  • Servoy Announces Open Source ‘Servoy 5.2′ to Simplify SaaS

    Open source lessens vendor lock-in and boosts the capabilities of both the developer and the platform. Servoy is expected to release the open source version in June. After the release, the source code can be downloaded from the Servoy website.

  • Apache’s Lesson In Radical Transparency

    Transparency on the other hand promotes confidence and community, educates and ultimately empowers. As the web gets richer, the financial and social cost of maintaining secrecy gets higher and higher.

  • Businesses Need Clear Policies For FOSS Contributions

    Businesses give to open source because open source increasingly gives back to businesses.

  • Events

  • SaaS

    • The Cloud Has No Boundaries, It’s Elasticity That Makes It Cloud

      “It isn’t the cloud if it has very firm boundaries”, says Marten Mickos, CEO of Eucalyptus Systems. I had a chance to chat with Marten and Dr. Rich Wolski, CTO and co-founder of Eucalyptus recently about their vision of the future of cloud computing and what role open source will play in it.

  • Oracle

  • Education

    • Kineo collaborates with Tesco to develop new learning academy online using Moodle Open Source LMS

      This landmark project makes pioneering use of open source technologies including Moodle and Joomla to allow Tesco staff to access all their learning needs online for the first time. The eventual scale of the project will make it one of the largest ever implementations of the Moodle platform in the corporate learning space. Kineo has designed and developed over 100 Moodle solutions for its clients, and on this project combined Joomla to add further functionality and enhance the user experience.

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

    • What’s new in GCC 4.5?

      Version 4.5 of the GNU Compiler Collection was released in mid-April with many changes under-the-hood, as well as a few important user-visible features. GCC 4.5 promises faster programs using the new link-time optimization (LTO) option, easier implementation of compiler extensions thanks to the controversial plugin infrastructure, stricter standards-conformance for floating-point computations, and better debugging information when compiling with optimizations.

  • Releases

  • Government

  • Openness

    • Open data movement: triumphs and tribulations

      The open data movement strives to make all data freely available to the public. Like its open source software counterpart, open data can be freely downloaded/shared without any restrictions and it can be mixed with other similar data sources.

Leftovers

  • Finance

    • May 12 2010: How to profit from volatility, chaos and misery
    • Goldman Sachs and Helicopter Ben

      Don’t expect a thank you note from Goldman Sachs or any of the other banks that had perfect trading days in Q1. “Perfect” means that they had no days of trading losses for 63 trading days.

      Goldman Sachs, which makes more money from sales and trading than any Wall Street firm, reported yesterday that it made at least $25 million trading every single day of the first quarter, the first perfect quarter in the company’s history. The company’s fixed-income, currencies and commodities business, known as FICC, and equities unit generate those returns by making markets for clients rather than betting the firm’s own money, Cohn said.

    • Morning Update/ Market Thread 5/13

      The government paying down your loan if you are underwater or unemployed? Wow. Anything to keep the game going for the banks – including bankrupting our nation. Moral hazard? The real moral hazard isn’t just how unfair it is to homeowners and people who have done the right thing, the fact that it is squarely to the benefit of the banks makes it a nation ending type of hazard – all to protect those people who have the power to crash the planet at the flick of an HFT switch.

Clip of the Day

NASA Connect – FOFE – Commercial Flight (1/11/2001)


05.13.10

Links 13/5/2010: Finnish Schools Use Free Software; Bordeaux 2.0.4 for Linux

Posted in News Roundup at 5:03 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • At Work with Linux

    At MITRE we use Linux extensively because our customers and partners use it. The MITRE office is essentially OS agnostic; we don’t care what they use, as long as it’s the right tool for the job. So far Linux, specifically Redhat Linux, has proven itself fit for the tasks it is called upon to perform.

  • Air Force may suffer collateral damage from PS3 firmware update

    When Sony issued a recent PlayStation 3 update removing the device’s ability to install alternate operating systems like Linux, it did so to protect copyrighted content—but several research projects suffered collateral damage.

    The Air Force is one example. The Air Force Research Laboratory in Rome, New York picked up 336 PS3 systems in 2009 and built itself a 53 teraFLOP processing cluster. Once completed as a proof of concept, Air Force researchers then scaled up by a factor of six and went in search of 2,200 more consoles (later scaled back to 1,700). The $663,000 contract was awarded on January 6, 2010, to a small company called Fixstars that could provide 1,700 160GB PS3 systems to the government.

  • Desktop

    • A US Army Federal Employee’s Linux Workspace

      It is time once again for our $100.00 (USD) Coolest Linux Workspace Contest. Today’s entry comes from Brian, a Federal employee with the United States Army, and working in a network evaluation lab. According to him, “left unattended and with no adult supervision, I tend to build really neat stuff at little or no cost to the taxpayer.” You can know more him about through his blog.

    • My First Linux Distribution

      I was starting to build a internet cafe. Thinking about how to make a internet cafe with low budget. Operating system with licence is too expensive. So i googling internet. And i found a sistem operation called “pclinux3d” i think this is a linux operating system. (i didn’t know “linux distribution”). I didn’t get satisfied with this operating system, so i googling, and after 4 month. I know what’s the meaning of “linux distribution” and “open source”.

      That distro is community remaster for internet cafe in my country (indonesia). Based on PCLinuxOS. Because i want to know how to build a distro. I try to download pclinuxos, ubuntu, mandriva.

      [...]

      PCLinuxOS is rock solid distros for me for now…, i don’t know if some people feel different.

      But Linux is good.

    • FI: Over a hundred schools using open source

      More than a hundred schools across Finland are using open source for all of their desktop PCs, according to Opinsys, an open source services provider.

      The company assists ninety schools in 28 municipalities with the maintenance of PCs and laptops running Ubuntu Linux. Tens of other schools are managing similar PCs themselves, according to Mikko Soikkeli, the company’s sales director.

      The costs per Linux PC or laptop, including maintenance, is about 282 Euro per year, according to a presentation last month by one of the schools using Ubuntu. “This infrastructure is easy to extend, it is secure, reliable and easy to use”, according to Allen Schneitz, a teacher at the Kasaviori School. “The system allows utilisation of second hand computers that are four to five years old.”

      A second case study on Linux based PCs in schools, by Risto Rönnberg for the city of Jyväskylä, puts the cost at 153 Euro per PC per year.

    • Hey, Consumer Reports!

      I agree. My folks get Consumer Reports, and the magazine is quite good about finding tech-savvy people to evaluate tech products, and then to distill that knowledge down to advice non-tech people can use to make buying decisions. (As in their reviews of antivirus software.) But not to even mention the Linux option is an implicit endorsement of one of most monopolistic, most consumer-abusive megacorporations on the planet. Would they print their annual automobile issue with only reviews of GM cars?

      It seems to me that Consumer Reports would be just the outfit to do a comparative review of the top dozen Linux distros, from the standpoint of an everyday (non-techie) computer user. But probably this is too much of a “niche” market for them. Or could it be that they don’t know how to critique products that are given away for free?

    • What Do You Use?

      It has become rather apparent that people are desiring the ability to run software designed for Windows or OSX on Linux. This is double-edged sword. This will of course give Linux an even more expanded library of applications, and applications with which people are familiar. The other side of this is that it does not give developers a reason to write native software for Linux. If we continue on the road toward Windows or OSX compatibility, will it help or hurt Linux?

    • Opinion: Competition vs cohesion

      I want competition amongst my desktop apps. I want Firefox and Chrome developers battling each other to make their browsers better. I want AbiWord to push forward with a fast and light word processor, making the OpenOffice.org folks realise that they have to do something about the bloat. I want a choice of music players, text editors, and why not, even calculators. This competition makes the Linux desktop better for everybody.

  • Server/HPC

    • Intel’s Single-chip Cluster Computer (SSC)

      There is even a modified version of Linux available. By the way, a separate Linux kernel runs on each core. It cannot run across the whole processor because it does not support cache coherency.

    • The Ethernet Cluster

      When the first Linux clusters were constructed Ethernet was one of the few choices for an interconnect. Of course there were more expensive and custom ways to connect computers, but Ethernet was the first network technology supported by Linux. Ethernet was also the most ubiquitous network, which also made it the cheapest.

    • Get ready for 7Gbps wireless networking
  • Audiocasts

  • Ballnux

  • Kernel Space

    • Kernel Log: Coming in 2.6.34 (Part 4) – Architecture and Virtualisation

      On Sunday, Linus Torvalds released the seventh pre-release version of Linux 2.6.34. The release announcement indicates that he expects it to be the last release candidate, suggesting that the next kernel version from the main development tree is likely to see the light of day late this or early next week. It is not, however, uncommon for Torvalds to slip out another version despite pronouncements to the contrary, pushing back the final kernel release by several days.

    • How to Become Linus Torvalds

      Linus *still* has no formal power, no mechanism whereby he can enforce his decisions about the kernel. It’s still the case that the “only control” he has is that he knows the code “better than anybody else”, and that if he does “a bad job”, someone else can do it themselves – that is, fork the code.

      Linux has avoided that fate because Linus has developed what amounts to a new way of managing large-scale projects involving huge numbers of geographically-dispersed contributors. Although the final decisions rest with him, he takes them in consultation with a wide range of coders. He is constantly involved in discussions on key mailing lists that allow important issues to be raised by anyone. Ultimately, then, he leads in part by being able to sense what the collective will of the Linux development community is on particular issues, and by not straying too far from it.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments

    • FVWM for fun & productivity

      Job done. Much nicer combination, plus because the right Windows key is so close to the arrows, if I’m being lazy I can swap screens one-handed.

      I’m also making heavy use of GNU Screen, another of my long-established favourite applications. I may post something about its configuration at some point..

    • K Desktop Environment (KDE SC)

      • Being KDE

        In March, we announced a set of labels for use by people creating KDE software, to demonstrate their association with KDE. We chose three options: Powered by KDE, Built on the KDE Platform and Part of the KDE Family and asked for artwork for badges and banners to illustrate these terms.

    • GNOME Desktop

      • Gnome Shell Might Add Real Multiple Desktops

        The idea is to have custom folders for each desktop. Right now, the desktop is located at /home/your_username/Desktop and this would provide a new folder for each virtual desktop so that you can fully work on a project on a given Desktop – including all the files related to your project / task.

      • Future GNOME: What to Expect in GNOME 3.0

        The release of GNOME 3.0, the popular desktop’s first major release in eight years, promises to be the major free software event in autumn 2010. Where is GNOME now? What can we expect of GNOME 3.0? Of GNOME 3 as a series of releases?

        When I asked Stormy Peters, the executive director of the GNOME Foundation, where to go for answers, she directed me to Vincent Untz. A director of the GNOME Foundation and one of the senior members of the GNOME Release Team, Untz is better positioned than almost anyone to offer an overview of the project from both a general and a technical perspective.

      • GNOME Amazon Referral Fees April 2010
  • Distributions

    • Best Newbie Linux Distro

      I’ve taken a look at Debian, Mandriva and Fedora. (I might have tried Suse too, but the LiveCD has never worked on my computer.) After first trying a LiveCD, I installed all three distros and gave them a good try-0ut.

      The core Linux philosophy is Free, as in Freedom, but I’m also interested in Free, as in Beer, so I took a look at how each distribution handled multimedia- Flash and MP3′s in particular.

    • Gentoo just makes sense!

      I am not giving up on the other distributions and will continue to evaluate their progress but Gentoo has earned its place on my system, at least for now.

    • Fedora

      • Fedora 13 gives off plain vibe, but offers power and stability under the hood

        The differences between Linux distributions these days are often so minute, there seems little reason to even review them anymore.

        After all, one distro running GNOME 2.30 or KDE 4.4 is going to look very much like any other distro running the same interfaces. The interfaces will be nearly identical — all that remains different are underlying administration tools and a few variant choices on the apps that are included.

        That was the conundrum recently faced when turning to review the latest beta of Fedora 13: it looked so much like other GNOME 2.30-interfaced distros I have seen lately, the initial thought was “what’s the diff?”

        Such an attitude is, for the most part, not fair to the developers of the Fedora Project, who have put together a darn fine distribution that reads as rock-solid and very user-friendly.

    • Ubuntu

      • Ubuntu Has Plans For Btrfs In 2011, 2012

        One of the meetings held this week during the Ubuntu Developer Summit for the Ubuntu 10.10 planning in Belgium was about Btrfs. During this session the developers discussed adding Btrfs support to GRUB2, whether or not Btrfs encryption is possible initially, an option to enable the Btrfs zlib compression, and other details.

      • The Ubuntu Support and Learning Center

        The website is designed to be very user friendly and minimalistic so the reader isn’t distracted from the main content and we should work closely with the Canonical training department and design team researchers so we can figure out exactly what users are having difficulty with and what questions they ask frequently.

      • I lightened up my Ubuntu Lucid desktop appearance

        Ubuntu was famous for being brown, even though it was probably half-orange for most of its storied existence. Mark Shuttleworth and Co. mostly blew that notion out of the water in Lucid Lynx (10.04 LTS), which is purplish and dark.

      • Perfect Purple
      • Nautilus-Elementary With Zeitgeist Brings Semantic file browsing to Ubuntu [Screencast]

        For those that don’t know much about Zeitgeist it, in essence, and to paraphrase the Zeitgeist framework launchpad blurb, ‘logs users activity, events and files and establishes relationships between these items based on usage.’ It then allows for other applications to use this data in meaningful ways – Such as with the GNOME Activity Journal.

      • Testing Out Ubuntu’s Unity Desktop

        For those wanting to test out the Ubuntu Unity desktop right now as we have done, you can add the ppa:canonical-dx-team/une Launchpad PPA to your Ubuntu system and then install the unity package.

      • Ubuntu 10.04 LTS Lucid Lynx review
      • [VIDEO] Maverick Meerkat UDS Keynote Address by Mark Shuttleworth

        Mark Shuttleworth’s keynote address at the Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick Meerkat UDS summit.

      • Instant-on Ubuntu

        For some time now Ubuntu chief Mark Shuttleworth has been pushing developers to speed up boot times in the Linux operating system. Now he has revealed Unity, a new interface that is aimed at netbooks users. He’s also announced Ubuntu Light, a fast, light, version of Ubuntu that will offer almost instant-on boot times.

      • The Performance Of Ubuntu KVM Virtualization

        The Kernel-based Virtual Machine (KVM) has been in the mainline Linux kernel since Linux 2.6.20 in early 2007 and over time it has become one of the most widely used virtualization platforms on Linux. Ubuntu uses KVM, Fedora uses KVM, and Red Hat Enterprise Linux has even switched from Xen to preferring KVM, among others. While occasionally we deliver new KVM virtualization benchmarks, we decided to investigate how the performance of KVM virtualization has changed — if at all — over the past two years for better or worse.

      • Variants

        • Canonical’s Red Headed Stepchildren

          Who Are These Red Headed Step Children?
          Before I go any further with this column, let’s take a quick look at each Ubuntu derivative and then I’ll talk about what’s wrong with them and what Canonical needs to do to fix this mess.

          Officially Supported
          Kubuntu – Kubuntu uses the KDE desktop environment instead of GNOME. It also leans heavily on KDE’s desktop applications rather than Ubuntu’s GNOME applications.

          EduBuntu – Edubuntu is essentially Ubuntu for parents, teachers, kids and schools. Edubuntu features educational games, math applications, text editors and a bunch of other applications focused on learning.

          Ubuntu Server Edition – You want this version of Ubuntu if you’re going to be running a server.

        • Peppermint OS One

          If the name “Peppermint OS” reminds you of Linux Mint, it’s no accident. Kendall Weaver, one of the Peppermint OS developers, is also the maintainer for the Linux Mint Fluxbox and LXDE editions.

  • Devices/Embedded

Free Software/Open Source

  • Myths Debunked: Why It Isn’t So Tough To Switch To Open Source

    Debunking Myth #1: There Is No Documentation. In the case of OpenOffice, there is in fact substantial free documentation for the suite, and there are free tutorials. You can find documentation for specific versions here. You can also find many free OpenOffice books here. You can also find many useful Flash tutorials here.

    Debunking Myth #2: There Is No Support. OpenOffice has a very large community of users, and the Community Support option can be sufficient for many users, but it’s not the only option. Inexpensive consultants offer support for OpenOffice, and there are inexpensive third-party solutions for paid support. OpenLogic is just one of the available providers.

  • The Graduate’s Guide To Finding Work In Open Source

    Try entering PHP or Drupal, for a start.If you have skills with open source programming languages, showcase them on Elance for freelance work. While you’re at it, put a citation up for your open source skills on RentACoder.

  • Evaluate Open Source Software

    Open Source software selection starts with the creation of a short-list of open source packages, and the very next step is the evaluation of all candidates.

  • Think laterally

    Open source created a bi-directional flow in which the market itself could make greater intellectual contributions than any of the original principals. Moreover, this could often be accomplished without any particular capital partner. Whereas piracy was seen as the scourge of the private property publisher, ubiquitous distribution was a necessary prerequisite for open source participation.

  • Continuous integration, can it work for software localisation?

    At Translate.org.za we want to keep delivering the best FOSS localisation tools. To do that we’ve started using Continuous Integration (CI) in the development of Pootle, Virtaal and the Translate Toolkit. We’re using a tool called Hudson to manage our CI process.

  • Mozilla

    • Mozilla detects insecure plugins for IE, Chrome, Safari

      Mozilla has introduced a service that checks plugins for the Internet Explorer, Chrome, Opera, and Safari browsers to make sure they don’t contain known bugs or security vulnerabilities.

      The page builds off a feature rolled out last year that checked only for out-of-date plugins for Firefox. At the moment, the service offers limited coverage for Internet Explorer extensions, but Mozilla says it plans to offer full coverage eventually.

    • Mozilla Wish List.

      As long as I can remember I had been using the Netscape web browser which evolved to Mozilla and now Firefox. I still use Firefox and have grown so comfortable with it that I don’t really desire to move onto anything else. Needless to say, Mozilla’s products are not perfect and there is always room for additional features and what I believe to be necessities in order to function in today’s world of computing.

    • Mozilla CEO John Lilly stepping down
    • Firefox 4: fast, powerful, and empowering

      Today, I presented an early product plan for Firefox 4 to the Mozilla community (live, over the web!) to share our vision for the next version of Firefox, and what projects are underway to realize it. Then I invited everyone to get involved by joining our engineering or product development efforts.

      [...]

      If you have Firefox or a modern web browser that supports fully open HTML video, you can watch the presentation.

    • Mozilla and the Shuttleworth Foundation seek fellowship applicants

      Mozilla Drumbeat and the Shuttleworth Foundation have announced a joint fellowship focused on ‘education for the open web’. According to a post on the Commonspace blog by Mark Surman, executive director of the Mozilla Foundation and former open philanthropy fellow at the Shuttleworth Foundation, the aim of the fellowship “is to find someone with solid, scalable and fresh ideas on how open learning and the open web intertwine.”

  • SaaS

  • Databases

    • PostgreSQL 9.0 is Serious Competition

      PostgreSQL supports Solaris, Linux and Windows with binary installations. You may also download the source code and compile it on any platform with which you’re working.

      Do I think PostgreSQL is ready to go head to head with MySQL? Yes. Do I think that PostgreSQL has a chance to unseat MySQL as the “World’s Most Popular Open Source Database Software?” Not for a second. I do think, however, that PostgreSQL will begin to raise corporate eyebrows and gain some enterprise adoption with its new, long-awaited feature set.

    • Top 10 MySQL GUI Tools

      Many third parties create rich applications to facilitate database management, database development and database administration. Here are ten outstanding graphical interfaces for MySQL.

  • OpenOffice.org

    • Small Business Software: OpenOffice.org vs. Google Docs

      First, why do we narrow down the options to only OpenOffice.org or Google Docs? They’re not the only competing solutions to MS Office. For online office suites you’ll find more full-featured competitors like Zoho, and desktop users can choose Apple’s iWork suite or many others. However, Google Docs and OpenOffice.org (OO.org) are the entrenched players here.

    • OpenOffice.org Still Kicking

      But OpenOffice.org isn’t going anywhere. If anything, I suspect it’s going to be getting some extra attention from Oracle and may be getting closer to Microsoft Office. It’s going to be a few more years before Web office suites take over entirely, anyway. Applications rarely just up and “die,” it takes a while for users to change habits.

    • OASIS Board of Directors elections: Vote for Charles-H. Schulz.
  • Business

    • Pentaho, Backed by Channel, Delivers Record 1Q Results

      Pentaho, the open source business intelligence company, generated record results in 1Q 2010, according to VP of Marketing Joe McGonnell. Pentaho attributes much of its performance to a growing channel partner program. Here’s a closer look at Pentaho’s momentum.

Leftovers

  • Would you buy a ticket to go to a restaurant?

    Instead of reservations, a restaurant in Chicago proposes buying tickets as if you’re going to a movie or the theater

  • Forbes new tool tracks advertisers’ corporate reputation

    That’s how Bruce Rogers, chief brand officer for Forbes, says the magazine is thinking these days. Even though circulation has remained relatively stable, Forbes sees an opportunity in thinking beyond selling advertising and diving into broader service areas for clients.

  • Indian outsourcing firm looks to prison for data entry work

    An Indian outsourcing firm is to run one of its data handling centres in a local prison as part of a new public/private partnership.

    Radiant Info Systems has come to a deal with the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh to hire 200 inmates of a state jail to work on data entry, and the processing and transmitting of information.

  • Science

    • Perhaps You’ll Visit Space In Your Lifetime, After All

      Space Adventures is going to use an Armadillo Technologies rocket to launch amateur astronauts 62 miles into the sky. Nothing new, except that they will do it for half the price of Virgin Galactic’s ticket, and in a real rocket!

  • Security/Aggression

    • If the government wants a ‘big society’, it needs to lift restrictions on people

      This is the second of a series of articles looking at the challenges the new government faces. Alan Cox is a Linux software developer and is a member of ORG’s Advisory Council

      [...]

      A big society means thinking about how the law works. It means passing laws that punish those who do offend, not nanny state laws removing the ability of the public to contribute to society for fear they might be naughty. It means creating a functioning creative market that reflects the world we live in and encourages creative output rather than channeling it into a tiny number of established mega-corporations who act as door keepers. Above all it means trust not restraint. It means trusting that most people will do the right thing, and trusting that the police and justice system will do their job with the rest.

    • My tweet was silly, but the police reaction was absurd

      The reason for the arrest was a tweet I had posted on the social network Twitter, which was deemed to constitute a bomb threat against Robin Hood airport in Doncaster: “Crap! Robin Hood airport is closed. You’ve got a week and a bit to get your shit together otherwise I’m blowing the airport sky high!” You may say, and I certainly realise now, it was ill-advised. But it was clearly frustration, caused by heavy snowfall grounding flights and potentially scuppering my own flight a week later. Like having a bad day at work and stating that you could murder your boss, I didn’t even think about whether it would be taken seriously.

    • A welcome site…

      As our friends at Privacy International have noted, it will be very interesting to see the ‘how’.

    • Photographer stopped under anti-terror laws may sue police

      A photographer is to launch a legal complaint after being stopped and searched by police on suspicion of being a terrorist while he took pictures of London’s skyline.

    • They say “more police” – they mean “more CCTV”

      West is adamant that ‘more surveillance’ is needed and has ordered an “immediate review” to target the use of CCTV across the borough. But she’s not alone. The other day Boris Johnson showed Michael Bloomberg London’s unparalleled CCTV network and Wandsworth councils camera’s continued to bring home the bacon.

    • Microphones on street corners – just in case
    • Personal cellphone data end up for sale at Mexico flea market

      The government had asked everyone to register their phones, but many refused, citing fears of spying or other misuse of the data. It turns out they were right.

    • In Scunthorpe, the tail is wagging the alcoholic dog

      As always, it’s “for the children” – the supposedly unarguable assertion which, once made, destroys all opposition.

      And weren’t these nannyists listening to the recent debate on ID Cards per se, which showed that we are overwhelmingly against them?

    • The 9/14 Presidency

      If you believe the president’s Republican critics, Barack Obama takes a law enforcement approach to terrorism. His FBI came under fire for reading Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the Nigerian national who nearly blew up an airplane on Christmas, his constitutional rights. His attorney general was blasted for wanting to give 9/11 mastermind Khalid Shaikh Mohammed a criminal trial in lower Manhattan. Republican Sen. Scott Brown rode to his historic upset victory in Massachusetts in part due to this slogan: “In dealing with terrorists, our tax dollars should pay for weapons to stop them, not lawyers to defend them.” Every sign suggests the GOP will make terrorism a wedge issue in the 2010 midterm elections. “As I’ve watched the events of the last few days,” former vice president Dick Cheney said shortly after the Abdulmutallab attack, “it is clear once again that President Obama is trying to pretend we are not at war.”

    • Do We Really Want To Criminalize Bad Jokes?
    • (en) US, Police brutality at May Day march in Chicago

      The police in Chicago have a long history of attacking protesters without warning or provocation.

    • MI5 faces allegations over torture of British man in Bangladesh

      The Security service is facing fresh accusations of involvement in the abuse of terrorism suspects after a British man was detained in Bangladesh and allegedly tortured while being questioned about his activities and associates in both countries.

  • Environment

    • Domtar: Print those e-mails to your heart’s content

      Domtar Corp. is getting frustrated with those “think before you print” messages at the bottom of so many e-mails.

      Now the paper giant is planning a North American ad campaign to urge computer users to hit the print button – often.

    • Obama biggest recipient of BP cash

      While the BP oil geyser pumps millions of gallons of petroleum into the Gulf of Mexico, President Barack Obama and members of Congress may have to answer for the millions in campaign contributions they’ve taken from the oil and gas giant over the years.

    • Oil spill: US failing to tighten ecological oversight, say activists

      The Obama administration waived environmental reviews for 26 new offshore drilling projects even as the BP oil disaster spewed hundreds of thousands of gallons of crude oil into the Gulf of Mexico, environmental activists said today.

    • Back to Petroleum

      A decade ago, the company then known as British Petroleum launched a multimillion dollar advertising campaign to rebrand itself as the greenest of oil giants. Since then, it has gone only by the initials “BP” and has popularized a new slogan: “Beyond Petroleum.” The campaign launched with a $200 million public relations and advertising budget and a new logo featuring the now-ubiquitous green-and-yellow sunburst. Ten years later, the company still spends big on advertising, dropping $76 million on radio and TV ads touting its image in the United States just last year.

    • Emperor Hickel: The Man Who Invented Alaska … and Sarah Palin

      Thirty years ago, Hickel realized that his arctic dreams lay in Alaska’s vast reserves of gas, oil, coal and lumber. But extracting and shipping those resources required removing a large obstacle: the land’s ownership by Indians and Natives.

      [...]

      Today, most of the Native Alaskan corporate land of the Prince William Sound is owned by people who don’t live in Alaska. The remaining Natives are now tenants of the land their ancestors have lived on for 3,000 years.

      Native leader Gail Evanoff told me, that was the plan from Day One. “They set it up for us to fail. They put it in a form they could take away.”

  • Finance

    • Morgan Stanley Investigation: Feds Looking Into Firm’s Mortgage Deals

      Fears of a growing investigation of Wall Street banks sent Morgan Stanley’s stock falling Wednesday even as the company said it knew nothing about a reported inquiry into its mortgage securities trading.

      The Wall Street Journal reported that federal prosecutors are investigating whether Morgan Stanley misled investors about its role in a pair of $200 million derivatives whose performance was tied to mortgage-backed securities. The newspaper said Morgan Stanley sometimes bet against the success of the derivatives, which were underwritten and marketed to investors by Citigroup Inc. and UBS AG.

    • The Real Misery Index April 2010: Underemployment Woes Lead To Two-Tier Economy

      The unemployment crisis continues to stymie a full economic recovery, with ripple effects from credit card delinquencies and rising food stamp participation indicating new hardships for millions of Americans, according to the latest update of Huffington Post’s Real Misery Index.

    • US home repossessions hit all-time high

      The number of US homes being repossessed hit an all-time high last month, but is set to start falling, says the body that tracks the figures.

      Banks took control of 92,432 properties in April, up 1% from March, and a 45% rise from a year earlier, said RealtyTrac.

      [...]

      A total of 333,837 new repossession filings were made in April, one for every 387 homes in the US.

    • Dylan Ratigan Coins the Phrase “Bankster Party”

      Dylan Ratigan (MSNBC) is the host of the only honest business show on cable. He doesn’t spend his day talking only about the ups and the downs of the stock market and encouraging people to “buy, buy, buy!” Instead, Ratigan covers real issues, like how the financial crisis is affecting average Americans, and what the chances are for real reform in Congress.

    • A Victory for the People!

      The Center for Media and Democracy’s Wall Street Bailout Tally shows that since 2008, the U.S. government has flooded Wall Street banks and financial institutions with $4.7 trillion dollars in taxpayer money, mostly in the form of loans from the Federal Reserve. The Fed has never told us which firms got these loans and what type of collateral American taxpayers got in return. This will now be revealed. We will also get an accounting of the Fed’s “stealth” bailout of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

    • Treasury Bailout Records Fail To Include Key Details, Says Watchdog

      The Treasury Department is lax about keeping records of its negotiations with bailed-out banks, including undocumented conversations in which billions of taxpayer dollars are at stake, a new watchdog report says.

      Treasury fails to keep meeting minutes or notes from phone calls with banks that received money from its $700 billion financial bailout, says the report from Neil Barofsky, the Special Inspector General for the bailout fund.

    • Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley may eventually escape proprietary trading ban

      Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley may ultimately avoid a ban on bank proprietary trading under the Wall Street overhaul.

    • Goldman Sachs’ moral obligation to Wall Street

      Meanwhile, Proxy Democracy, which helps investors keep track of the actions of institutional shareholders, reports that both AFSCME’s employee pension plan and CalPERs voted in favor of the measure.

    • Round I to the Banks, More to Come

      The Senate resumes debate today on the Wall Street reform bill, having late last Thursday rejected probably the most important measure proposed to reduce Wall Street power, strengthen financial stability and fortify our democracy: breaking up the banks.

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • NPR Erases Domestic Terrorism

      National Public Radio (NPR) broadcast a story on May 9 by Dina Temple-Raston titled Terrorism in the U.S. Takes on a U.K. Pattern that started out with the following flawed premise:

      “For years, the U.S. seemed largely immune to homegrown terrorism, but experts think the recent attack [in Times Square] is more proof that has changed.”

      Raston then proceeded to discuss “home grown terrorists” only in the context of Pakistani-Americans, Afghan-Americans, South Asian Americans and others originally from outside the country who became citizens and then somehow became “radicalized.”

  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

    • Judge Rules That Filmmaker Must Give Footage to Chevron

      A federal judge in Manhattan on Thursday granted a petition by Chevron to issue a subpoena for hundreds of hours of footage from a documentary about the pollution of the Amazon rainforests of Ecuador and the oil company’s involvement.

    • German court orders wireless passwords for all

      Users can be fined if a third party takes advantage of an open connection

    • Houlihan Smith’s Phony Invocation of Trademark Law Fails to Keep Criticism off the Web

      It’s an old story, sad to say. Bank waltzes into court, represented by a big firm, decrying damage to its interests and demanding immediate relief, but giving no notice to the other side, and walks out with TRO issued by a credulous local judge, no questions asked. Happily, a recent case involving an investment bank that got a TRO against a message board host, in violation of section 230 immunity, has a happier ending, because the bank ended up before a federal judge who understood the technical details better than the bank’s own lawyers.

    • Four Nerds and a Cry to Arms Against Facebook

      They gave themselves 39 days to raise $10,000, using an online site, Kickstarter, that helps creative people find support.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality

    • Net Neutrality Battle Gets Silly… Astroturfers, Sock Puppets, Student Projects, Overwritten Word Docs… Oh My

      Either way, as we predicted, the whole thing is becoming a political food fight being manhandled by lobbyists and special interests, with little regard for the deeper, important, underlying issues. Even when moves are being made by people outside of the beltway, it’s being dissected for the driving forces behind it, rather than what actually makes sense. What comes out in the end is going to be shaped by those lobbyists and special interests. And that’s my big fear with all of this. The end result isn’t going to have anything to do with actually looking at what’s best for the internet or the American people, but who can game the system better and turn this into a hotter political football.

    • Lessons From The US’s First Broadband Plan… In 1808

      But both Downes and the FCC seem to skip over the larger issue of speed. The real problem in the US is not that we’re so far behind on adoption rates — but in what kind of broadband most people can use today. With some exceptions, it’s slow. Especially compared to some other countries. And, yes, there are some issues involving population density and the ability to build out a faster network, but if the government is going to get involved, why not focus on the metric that matters: which would be the bandwidth of the network, rather than making sure that the guy living at the end of a dirt road in the middle of nowhere can get his broadband access.

  • DRM

    • Digital Right Management and/or Technical Protection Measures Cause Climate Change

      The biggest problem with Digital Rights Management and/or Technical Protection Measures is that the biggest proponents of such schemes don’t understand the technology. For that reason I’m going to try to explain it in simple terms, that a non-programmer can understand.

      [...]

      The more complex the DRM/TPM system, the more processing power is required. The Windows Vista DRM sub-system mentioned above was far more complex, and required far more processing power. And of course the more processing power required for a system to work, the more electrical power is required. For all of the examples we are going to assume that each command uses ONE unit of power. This is for illustrative purposes only – different computer processors require differing amounts of power to do the same thing, and at different speeds. This is a simplified explanation.

    • Adobe messes with Flash DRM

      SOFTWARE HOUSE Adobe has been tinkering with the digital restrictions management (DRM) for its Flash software.

      Dubbed Flash Access 2.0, the changes will mean that content providers can control what types of output devices can display the content.

      According to the Adobe blog, it is enabling HDCP and broadcast control flags for Flash content.

    • EA Sports Online Pass: Buy new or pay $10 to play online
    • Rockstar Using ‘Pirated’ Copy Of Max Payne 2 On Steam To Remove DRM?

      Apparently, in examining the code with a hex editor, someone discovered that the official Steam release is ascii tagged by the Scene release group Myth (which hasn’t been around for many, many years). No one’s quite sure what happened exactly, but the obvious suggestion is that Rockstar chose the easy way out in trying to remove the CD check DRM in the game to put it on Steam, and just found a cracked version online.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Kaleidescape Introduces Expensive And Almost Pointless Blu-ray Jukebox… And Hollywood Still Thinks It’s Illegal

      Kaleidescape has now come out with a new product that actually adds the ability to store Blu-ray discs as well — which might be a surprise given last summer’s ruling. However, in response to the ruling, Kaleidescape added one “feature” which it hopes will satisfy Hollywood lawyers: to play back a movie, you now have to put the original disc into the player. Yes, you read that right. This is a device designed to rip and store your DVDs — and the only way you can play them back is to go ahead and put the actual DVD into the player to prove that you have it. In other words, it takes away the whole idea of the convenience behind the product.

    • Hollywood Gets Injunction To Disconnect The Pirate Bay

      Last month it became apparent that several Hollywood movie studios had threatened to take legal action against the owner of ISP CyberBunker, the current bandwidth provider for The Pirate Bay. Now, according to fresh information from a reliable source, the studios have come good on their threats.

    • Why a binding treaty for the visually impaired at WIPO?
    • Copyrights

      • Copyright for Creativity declaration launched

        ORG has joined the initiative Copyright for Creativity. We believe that it is time for a discussion in the European institutions on how to ensure that copyright fully supports innovation, creativity, competition, and the public interest. The launch of the Declaration for Europe on 5 May marks the start of this discussion. The press release and a video of the launch in Brussels follow.

      • First-Sale Copyright Cases Headed for 9th Circuit

        AutoDesk sued Timothy Vernor for copyright infringement after the Seattle man tried to auction off four packages of Autodesk software on eBay. The software company argued that its license agreement doesn’t allow for reselling. Like Augusto, Vernor prevailed on summary judgment in the lower court.

      • ‘Hurt Locker’ producers about to sue an army of pirates

        The war against movie piracy is getting downright explosive. We’ve learned that the producers of the Oscar-winning “The Hurt Locker” are preparing a massive lawsuit against thousands of individuals who pirated the film online. The case could be filed as soon as tomorrow.

        Voltage Pictures, the banner behind the best picture winner, has signed up with the U.S. Copyright Group, the Washington D.C.-based venture that, as we first reported in March, has begun a litigation campaign targeting tens of thousands of BitTorrent users.

      • RIAA Wins Again: Judge Says LimeWire Induced Copyright Infringement

        This is hardly a surprise, given earlier rulings on various file sharing systems, but a court has ruled in favor of the RIAA and against Limewire, saying that Limewire “engaged in unfair competition, and induced copyright infringement.”

      • Court Grants RIAA Summary Judgment Motions vs. Limewire
      • Lichtenstein’s Estate has Changed Its Mind!!!

        The good people at The Estate of Roy Lichtenstein have decided that they’re ok with us using our album cover image. The power of the internet and collective thought has won!!!

      • EU must break down national copyright barriers, says Commissioner

        Piracy has created the single market in music and films that EU legislators have failed to build, European Commission Digital Agenda Commissioner Neelie Kroes has said.

        Kroes told a business leaders’ convention in Brussels that pirates had done what single market regulations could not and established the borderless distribution of audio visual material over the internet. She said that the EU nations must work together to create a legal single market in digital goods.

      • Can You Copyright Blank Forms Used To File Papers With The SEC… And Then Block Selling The Filled Out Forms?
    • ACTA

      • ACTA Draft Release Was Apparently A One Time Deal: Now We’re Back To Secrecy

        After about a year or so of very public questions over the incredible level of secrecy of ACTA (including the patently ridiculous claim that details couldn’t be revealed for national security reasons), including a complete smackdown by the EU Parliament concerning the whole ACTA process, the negotiators finally (and very reluctantly) released the latest draft in April. Of course, by then, the full document had already leaked. Still, the officially released document left out some of the key parts that were in the leaked draft. Funny how that works.

    • Digital Economy Bill

      • Will Nick Clegg push to repeal the Digital Economy Act?

        For ORG supporters, there is a lot that we can hope for from the new administration.

        * We can hopefully assume that talk of a repeal of the Human Rights Act is now shelved.
        * ID cards and their database should be scrapped
        * The DNA database should be restricted or scrapped
        * Promises of a Data Freedom Act are welcome

Clip of the Day

NASA Connect – FOFE – Experimental Aircraft (1/11/2001)


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