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04.03.13

Links 3/4/2013: MATE 1.6, US Justice Department Versus Online News

Posted in News Roundup at 4:46 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

  • Avetti.com Launches Enterprise Open Source E-Commerce Software

    Avetti’s enterprise e-commerce software used in many high volume online stores now has a Community Edition available under the OSL v3 Open Source License. A key feature is integration with the Open Ice Cat product database, which provides images, descriptions and specifications permitting merchants to create professional stores faster.

  • How Netcore Built Rs 50 Crore Biz With Open Source

    The Mumbai-based solutions provider, which focuses on email, messaging and e-marketing solutions, has saved $2 million on licensing costs with free and open source software (FOSS)

  • New marketplace connects open source contractors with clients

    In any field, a major challenge can be finding the right talent. For open source projects looking for contractors, it’s hard to organize possible candidates from all over the web. Flossmarket hopes to fill that void.

    A platform for connecting contractors and businesses/individuals, Flossmarket allows each party to search for and find like-minded partners faster for their projects. Contractors build a profile and are able to advertise their services on their page. And, anyone who needs contract open source work done can review candidates based on criteria they set in their search.

  • Crossing the Chasm

    Are you winning if you own ninety-nine percent of a moribund market ? I don’t think so. Linux and Open Source/Free Software has crossed the chasm now. It has become the mainstream. Every Android tablet or phone out there is a Linux and Open Source/Free Software platform, and in the next few years I fully expect this to become the most common form of computing for most people worldwide (disclaimer, I do work for Google so please take such predictions with the pinch of salt they deserve).

    For Free Software advocates like myself this is a tremendously positive change. The dirty secret of Samba, my own Free Software project, is that for a while the developers only ever run Windows ourselves in order to test Samba (which is an interoperability solution). Mostly everyone uses a different variety of Free Software desktops and servers (with the odd Mac or Solaris/Illumos user thrown into the mix). The default at least for us has become Free Software.

    So have we won ? Should we just pack up the advocacy tent and go home ? Unfortunately not. Most of the applications running on these devices are still proprietary. Most people using mobile devices, although they might be running a Free Software operating system underneath, still don’t realize why Free Software is important.

  • BBC sharing its TV application layer as open source

    Britain’s public service broadcasting corporation BBC is making available as open source the code for building HTML-based TV software solutions, called TAL. “Sharing the TV Application Layer should make building applications on TV easier for others, helping to drive the uptake of this nascent technology”, the organisation explains.

  • BBC Almost “Gets” FLOSS…

    Nothing in FLOSS restricts use of FLOSS in commercial products. You can charge money for services instead of charging for licences and GPL, for instance, permits charging per copy or whatever. Much FLOSS is commercial, like Linux, the kernel, worth $billions, FireFox, the web browser, worth $hundreds of millions and RedHat makes a $billion in revenue on FLOSS annually.

  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • Mozilla Celebrates 15 Years with Firefox 20

        Mozilla captured many a headline today as Mitchell Baker blogged about 15 years of “a better web.” Mozilla began life as Netscape’s Open Source branch of development in 1998 and has since changed the Web many times, if sometimes by accident. But as Mozilla celebrates this milestone, Firefox 20 is already making the rounds.

        Baker said, “Looking back, Mozilla’s plan was as radical as the Web itself: use open source and community to simultaneously create great software and build openness into the key technologies of the Internet itself. This was something commercial vendors weren’t doing and could not do. A non-profit, community-driven organization like Mozilla was needed to step up to the challenge.”

      • Firefox 20.0: Find out what is new

        Mozilla will upgrade the stable channel of its desktop browser to Firefox 20.0 today. The front page at the time of writing is still linking to a download of version 19.0.2, but you can use this link to download the new version of the browser right away. Make sure you change its url if you need a different localized version, this one downloads the US version of Firefox.

      • Celebrating 15 Years of a Better Web
      • Firefox 20 Drops In New Private, Download Features

        Mozilla has announced Firefox 20 with several prominent new features to the open-source web-browser.

        As shared on the Mozilla blog, prominent features of Firefox 20 include:

        - Support for starting private browsing in a new tab of an already existing web-browser session. Firefox for Android also now supports private browsing on a per-tab basis.

      • Mozilla and Samsung Collaborate on Next Generation Web Browser Engine
  • Education

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

  • Openness/Sharing

    • Open Data

      • On Data Science with Open Data

        In a previous blog post I offered up two interpretations of the term ‘data science’. These amounted to 1) ‘the science of data’ and 2) ‘doing science with data’. If you read the earlier post you’ll probably detect my mild irritation with the term when coupled with the second of these interpretations. Perhaps it’s the redundancy, or maybe the implication that plain ‘science’ is somehow devoid of data. It may be both.

    • Open Access/Content

Leftovers

  • The Meme Hustler

    Tim O’Reilly’s crazy talk

  • Science

  • Hardware

    • Pie-in-the-sky or Real Growth in PC Shipments?

      Wait a bit… New hardware is something that might drive unit shipments and M$’s cutting of licensing fees might help if people actually wanted to buy M$’s OS, but M$ is cutting the prices because people don’t want to buy M$’s OS, so this is wishful thinking. Manufacturers should be shipping GNU/Linux if they want sales to pop. People are desperate to escape the clutches of M$ and the consumers who are a big piece of the pie cannot unless they find GNU/Linux on retail shelves.

  • Security

    • Exclusive: Ongoing malware attack targeting Apache hijacks 20,000 sites
    • EU data-protection authorities launch joint action against Google

      Data-protection authorities of Germany, France, Italy, Spain, the UK, and the Netherlands have launched a joint action against the Google for violating the European Union privacy rules.

      The joint action is the first co-ordinated and formal procedure by EU member countries against a single company on privacy.

      Currently, the European authorities can impose only fines below €1m. However, the new EU privacy rules, expected to be approved by the end of 2013, could allow the authorities to inflict on companies penalties up to 2 per cent of their global annual turnover.

  • Defence/Police/Secrecy/Aggression

    • Greek Nazi link group ‘set up here’

      A Greek political party with links to neo-Nazis say they have established themselves in Melbourne, but have no interest in Australian politics.

      Golden Dawn, which was founded by a Holocaust denier and whose members have been linked to dozens of violent protests in Greece, claims to have set up a group in Melbourne filled with Greek-Australians who will ”fight and defend both of our countries with pride and honour”.

      The group sent an email to Fairfax Media criticising the ”lies” of reporters, politicians and Greek community leaders since controversial Golden Dawn MP Ilias Kasidiaris announced plans for a Melbourne office and a visit from MPs on a Melbourne radio station in February.

    • German Pastor Faces Trial Over Anti-Nazi Protest

      A German pastor due to stand trial for allegedly inciting violence at an anti-Nazi demonstration said Tuesday that authorities risk deterring people from standing up to right-wing extremists if he is convicted.

    • Is The Aryan Brotherhood of Texas about to Launch a Neo-Nazi Counter-Revolution?
    • Capitol Hill hawks object stripping CIA of drones
    • Symbols of Bush-era Lawlessness Flourish Under Obama

      Guantanamo Bay prison plans expansion, while CIA official linked to torture cover-up gets promoted

    • ‘Americans’ taps creator’s work at CIA

      When he was training to be a case officer for the CIA in the early 1990s, Joseph Weisberg soon learned that deception was a crucial skill — one that involved lying to his family regularly.

    • The Shift in the Drone Debate

      When a forum as hawkish at The Washington Post‘s editorial page starts running pieces arguing the drone war is creating more enemies than it is eliminating, you know the dialogue is beginning to shift.

    • An Urgent Proposal to Protect People From Domestic Drones
    • Drones: Secrets in our skies

      Hundreds of unmanned aerial vehicles – known as drones – are aloft in our skies, many owned and built by recreational users. But safety and security issues alarm the CAA, which oversees our aviation system.

    • Officials want ‘drones’ buzzing over Utah
    • North Korea: Not Crazy but Very Misunderstoods

      It seems scary, even crazy: talk of a “sea of fire” and an “arc of destruction,” nuclear missiles slamming into distant shores. North Korea, an “isolated state,” as we’re constantly told by media reports, hurls invective at the world while its people, abused, hungry and cold, are led by an apparently well-fed young man, Kim Jong-un, who sits in front of shabby-looking computers running nuclear programs that are going, literally, ballistic.

      But is it all true?

      “Public discourse about the North in most of our enlightened world is crippled, condescending, irrelevant, and, like heartburn, episodic,” says James Church, the pseudonymous author of a series of novels about the country, in an article titled: “NK and Pluto.” He insists on anonymity because of the nature of his past intelligence work.

      As the rhetoric ratchets up again on the Korean peninsula with talk of mobilization, attack and counterattack, Mr. Church’s view is deeply counterintuitive and very valuable. His authorial name is a pseudonym for a former Western intelligence officer who has been in the country dozens of times and now, retired from government, writes about it through the eyes of a fictional North Korean policeman called Inspector O. (Full disclosure – I have met Mr. Church and he is definitely real.) In fact, the novels offer a superb demonstration of the idea that fiction tells the truth better than fact.

  • Cablegate

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • 350.org Calls for Public Comment on Keystone XL Pipeline

      After the recent tar sands pipeline spill in Arkansas, where thousands of gallons of toxic oil ran through the streets of a small community, the climate change organization 350.org is asking Americans to join in the public commenting process for the Keystone XL pipeline.

      The U.S. State Department is reviewing applications for permits needed for the international pipeline to advance. The State Department is soliciting public comment on the issue until April 22.

  • Finance

    • Taking back City College from the corporations – by any means necessary

      Like the Monsanto Protection Act, the support for all of this corporate destruction of our communities’ schools…

    • When America Came ‘This Close’ to Establishing a 30-Hour Workweek

      The April 15, 1933 issue of Newsweek, one of the first in the magazine’s history, contains a remarkable cover headline: Bill cutting work week to 30 hours startles the nation. Indeed only nine days earlier, on April 6th, the Black-Connery Bill had passed in the United States Senate by a wide margin. The bill fixed the official American work week at five days and 30 hours, with severe penalties for overtime work.

    • Pope to review Vatican bureaucracy, bank scandal

      …bank which has regularly damaged the Vatican’s image over three decades…

    • Food stamps and the database state…

      The latest proposal for ‘food stamps’ has aroused a good deal of anger. It’s a policy that is divisive, depressing and hideous in many ways – Suzanne Moore’s article in the Guardian is one of the many excellent pieces written about it. She hits at the heart of the problem: ‘Repeat after me: austerity removes autonomy’.

    • The Great British class calculator

      People in the UK now fit into seven social classes, a major survey conducted by the BBC suggests.

    • Bitcoin price goes on wild ride

      The price of the virtual currency bitcoin, already volatile in recent weeks, went through wild swings in overnight trading Tuesday and Wednesday.

      According to prices quoted on Mt.Gox, the main trading exchange for bitcoins, the value of one bitcoin ricocheted from $106 to as high as $147, then back down to $125, then to $141. They were trading around $139 per bitcoin in afternoon trading Wednesday.

    • Paulson Applies for Lawsuit Dismissal – Analyst Blog

      Paulson & Co applied for dismissal of a lawsuit made by ACA Financial Guaranty related to Abacus – a collateralized debt obligation (CDO). The plaintiffs accused the company of joining banking major The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. ( GS ) to obtain guaranteed payments from bond insurers on risky investments.

      In 2011, ACA Financial filed a $120 million lawsuit against Goldman and later in January, added Paulson & Co along with its hedge fund unit – Paulson Credit Opportunities Master II Ltd as the accused. The modified lawsuit claimed that Goldman and Paulson tricked ACA Financial into believing that Paulson was investing in the CDO. However, Paulson had taken a short position on it.

  • Privacy

    • NSA Chief Wants Companies to Share More Info With the Government

      Speaking at a conference at Georgia Tech, Director of the U.S. National Security Agency General Keith Alexander pressed Congress last week pass legislation creating a more effective information-sharing regime between government and businesses to help protect the nation’s security. Just as past legislative efforts such as the proposed Cyber Intelligence Protection Act (CISPA) have faced widespread backlash for imposing high regulatory costs on businesses while risking infringing basic rights, the fear remains that Alexander’s proposals simply suggest more of the same.

    • California Law Would Require Companies To Disclose All Consumer Data Collected
  • Civil Rights

  • DRM

    • Safe-harbor compliance for FOSS projects

      “DMCA” is a four-letter word among free and open source software developers, and for good reason: the 1998 act criminalized an entire category of programs and has been grossly misused in numerous cases. It’s in the news yet again this week, as activists are fighting to make it legal to carrier-unlock cellphones despite the Librarian of Congress’s decision not to exempt unlocking from the DMCA’s anti-circumvention rules.

      But the anti-circumvention rules are only one part of the DMCA—it also put in place the safe harbors that protect online services from liability for their users’ activity. These too have been the subject of some controversy, as large content owners have routinely abused the notice-and-takedown process to censor materials protected by fair use. But they’ve also done a lot of good. Before, it was difficult for service providers dealing with user-uploaded content to predict their potential liability for the infringing activity of their users. The safe harbors provide clear rules for avoiding secondary liability related to user content.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • Opinion: Rethinking the Internet

        Sharing knowledge, growing inclusion, increasing participation. The other benefits, economic and social will flow from these principles. Now that sounds like a good place to start to me.

04.02.13

Links 3/4/2013: Valve GNU/Linux Distribution

Posted in News Roundup at 7:19 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Today’s Linux schisms are a blessing in disguise

    The Linux community is fracturing along a number of fault lines — and that’s a good thing

  • Turn Your Linux Ubuntu Into Windows 7
  • April 2013 Issue of Linux Journal: High Performance Computing

    When I was in college, there was a rich kid down the hall who had a computer with 16MB of RAM. Before you scoff, you need to think back to 1993. The standard amount of RAM in a new computer was 2MB, with 4MB being “high-end”. Anyway, this kid’s computer was amazingly fast because he could create a RAM disk big enough to contain Windows 3.1 completely, so the entire OS ran from RAM. It was the 1993 rich-kid version of an SSD.

  • The Linux Setup – Mark Anderson, Teacher

    On my main laptop, my trusty old Dell Inspiron B130, I run Ubuntu 12.04 LTS. On my old Acer Aspire One netbook, I just recently switched from Ubuntu to Peppermint Linux 3, which has injected much needed speed on that machine. It has become the tool I use for writing.

  • Mini Maker Faires attract penguins

    On Saturday, April 13, 2013, a free “mini maker faire” event will be taking place at the Cleveland Public Library, in downtown Cleveland, Ohio. Modeled on the legendary Maker Faire of San Mateo, California, the mini maker faire will be a celebration of ingenuity and the do-it-yourself (DIY) spirit.

    I’ll be one of the workshop presenters at this event and I’m expecting a large number of penguins will be attending. Note: “Penguins” are an affectionate name for open source enthusiasts—so named in honor of the Linux mascot,

  • Garry’s Mod Creator Plays Cruel Joke on Linux Fans
  • Why Nokia and Linux failed, so far

    Before you judge me by the article title, please read carefully. I have a very important message, and it has everything to do with the commercial and public image success of Nokia, and Linux.

    [...]

    So we need apps.

  • Desktop

    • Why Torvalds loves the Chromebook Pixel: It’s all about the display
    • Resistance Isn’t Futile

      I’ve spent a lot of time in conversation with various people about the State of Desktop Linux. While I have my own ideas as to how we (could have) gained a larger market share on the Desktop, my firm belief is that, at this time…..

      Anything we do from now on will be too little, too late.

      That ship has sailed, it’s water under the bridge, however you wish to express it.

      Linux, as we know it, is not going to ever become a major player in the Desktop market.

      I’ve made peace with that. Since 2005, I’ve chewed my lip over how this can change, but the fact is, there are simply too many people not willing to do the things necessary to make it a reality. Whether you believe it or not, whether you like it or not…

  • Server

    • ‘Petaflop’ supercomputer is decommissioned

      A US supercomputer called Roadrunner has been switched off by the Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico.

      The machine was the first to operate at “petaflop pace” – the equivalent of 1,000 trillion calculations per second – when it launched in 2008.

  • Kernel Space

    • Jon Corbet Mulls Linux Kernel Changes

      Now that the Linux kernel 3.9 merge window is closed, it’s safe to say we know what features will be included in the next kernel release. What lies beyond is predictable, still, but will likely hold a surprise or two. That’s where the annual Linux kernel weather report comes in.

    • Linux 3.9-rc5

      I’m like the US postal office – “Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night” will keep me from doing weekly -rc releases. A little holiday like Easter? Bah, humbug. It might delay the release email a
      few hours because a man gotta stuff himself with odd seasonal desserts (and the Finnish Easter desserts are odder than most), but it won’t stop the inevitable progress towards a final 3.9 release.

    • Linux 3.9-rc5 Kernel Is Not Really Peculiar
    • Graphics Stack

      • Hawaii Desktop Is Now Usable On Wayland/Weston

        The lead developer behind the Hawaii Desktop Environment now believes that their Qt Quick 2 desktop is now in a usable state for Wayland and can run fine on the Weston compositor.

        While Hawaii is even less well known that Xfce or LXDE, it’s gained early attention for focusing upon Wayland support and there was also work on its own Wayland compositor known as Green Island. This Wayland support isn’t too hard since the desktop and its components are being written from scratch and is designed around Qt5 and Qt Quick 2, which already has upstream Wayland support.

      • Intel Mesa Driver Gets KDE KWin Optimizations

        A number of commits to the i965 driver in Mesa today benefit the performance of KDE’s KWin window manager for those using Intel Ivy Bridge graphics hardware.

        There were a number of commits pertaining to the i965 driver’s fragment shared pushed this afternoon (i965/fs). Most notably, this should help Ivy Bridge with KWin when using the scaling-related effects using the OpenGL 2.x renderer.

      • RDP Back-End Merged For Wayland’s Weston

        One month ago a FreeRDP-based remote compositor for Wayland’s Weston was proposed. Now having undergone six code revisions, the Weston Remote Desktop Protocol back-end has been merged.

      • VIA Secretly Has A Working Gallium3D Driver

        In years past we long heard about lofty goals out of VIA Technologies for being open-source friendly and ultimately come up with a Mesa Gallium3D driver. We haven’t heard anything officially out of VIA in a great number of months, but it turns out they do now have a Gallium3D driver for Chrome 9!

        In response to a Phoronix Forums thread about using VIA graphics under Linux on an old laptop, a Phoronix reader shared he had working VIA Linux graphics. The reported configuration was Lubuntu 12.10 with an ASRock PVR530 motherboard that boasts VX900 / Chrome 9 graphics.

      • The Wayland/Weston Fork Is Now “Banned”
    • Benchmarks

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments/WMs

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

    • GNOME Desktop/GTK

      • GNOME 3.8 Debuts New Open Source Linux Desktop

        The GNOME 3.8 also benefits from the Every Detail Matters initiative from the GNOME Foundation. Back in 2011, GNOME developer Allan Day launched the Every Detail Matters effort with GNOME 3.4 to improve the overall quality of the GNOME desktop.

        With the GNOME 3.8 release, 60 ‘Every Detail Matters’ bugs were fixed.

      • Gnome 3.8 Core Utilities

        Gnome 3.8 has been released and apart from the various Gnome libraries, services and core parts that have been upgraded, we should take a look on the applications and utilities that are also part of Gnome.

        How did the tools that we will be using every day evolved? What new exciting features and improvements consist the base for a greater Gnome experience? Let’s find out!

      • Gnome 3.8 review: it’s almost there

        The much awaited evolutionary release of Gnome — 3.8 — arrived last week. After playing with it for a while I opine that Gnome 3.8 is much closer to what Gnome team was aiming for as the ‘next’ version of this desktop environment – the successor of the 2.x branch. It’s polished (as usual), fast, responsive and a bit more mature.

  • Distributions

    • Distrowatch Almost Got Me, April Fools’ Jokes

      Buuut, it is an awfully large database now. So, it sounded perfectly reasonable when I read Ladislav’s words, “This site’s database has swollen to a whopping 746 free operating systems and is growing every week! Clearly, this is unsustainable. As a result, we have decided to cut down on the number of distributions tracked in our database – from the current 746 to just 25.”

      He had me up until I read the “25!” Then I remembered it was April Fools’ Day. But even if I hadn’t caught on yet the next statement would surely have done it, “All superfluous distributions will be removed and no longer tracked – these include anything below number 25 in our page hit ranking statistics, such as Fuduntu, Kubuntu, Gentoo Linux, PC-BSD or Red Hat Enterprise Linux. These distributions are clearly not very popular, so why bother?”

    • Cookie Cutter Distros Don’t Cut It
    • Standards, Trends, And Shiny Things

      Now apply this to say, Ubuntu PPA’s. Would people be using Grive if not for trends ? Of course not :) Lets take OMG!Ubuntu for example, we could say it’s a trend-setter in the Ubuntu world. Over time a project gains enough following through the Internet’s equivalent of the real-world word of mouth. People flock to these projects and soon they become big enough to be part of everyday Linux life. Note the “Shiny Things” rule is also applicable here.

    • First looks at KANOTIX 2013 and GhostBSD 3.0
    • ZevenOS 3.0 Neptune “Brotkasten” KDE Review: Refreshingly different!

      ZevenOS, a German based distro, is quite a familiar name in the Linux world. Typically they bring out two classes of distro

      * A lightweight XFCE distro based on Ubuntu, with the look and feel of BeOS, which actually never captured my imagination
      * A heavier KDE based Neptune based on Debian testing

    • New Releases

    • Screenshots

    • Red Hat Family

    • Debian Family

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Ubuntu Virtual Machine: Guest and Host

            If you’d like to run an Ubuntu virtual machineon your PC, you’ll need to weigh a series of considerations. To be sure, the use of virtualization is commonplace in the IT industry these days. Still, before you decide to run an Ubuntu virtual machine, you must consider whether you fully understand the benefits of setting one up in the first place.

            In this article, I’ll explore virtual machine hosts and guests on Ubuntu, why virtualization is a better bet than relying on WINE and how to ensure that you are selecting the best virtual machine solution for your Ubuntu desktop.

          • MapR brings Hadoop support to Ubuntu
          • Think You Saw Unity In Last Night’s Doctor Who?
          • Ubuntu 13.04 To Axe The Wubi Windows Installer

            One of the less popular ways to use Ubuntu Linux has been through the “Wubi” Windows-based installer that places Ubuntu within a Windows installation just as you would any other application. However, Canonical is planning to remove Wubi from Ubuntu 13.04.

          • Flavours and Variants

            • Interview with Zorin OS creator, Artyom Zorin

              Artyom Zorin: My name is Artyom Zorin and I live in Dublin, Ireland. I’m the CEO of Zorin Group as well as being a student. My parents are ethnic Russians who moved from Ukraine to Ireland many years ago, which explains why my name doesn’t sound like a normal Irish one. I first came across Ubuntu back in 2008. Believe it or not, what actually attracted me most to Linux was the Compiz desktop effects software which I thought was “cool” when I first saw it on YouTube. At the beginning, I was a little bit anxious about making the leap, but after my brother Kyrill installed Ubuntu on our computer we started to see a lot more advantages to using Linux than simply the desktop effects. We also noticed that many people coming from a Windows environment found Ubuntu rather difficult to use as it was lacking a familiarity. Advanced Linux users argue that Ubuntu is simple to use and suffices for Linux beginners coming from Windows but we saw that what this user group really needed was a familiar graphical interface. This prompted us to develop a Linux distribution that resolves this issue to make the transition from Windows to Linux entirely seamless, a distribution now known as Zorin OS.

            • Ubuntu vs. Mint: Which Linux Distro Is Better for Beginners?

              Ubuntu vs. Mint: Which Linux Distro Is Better for Beginners?There’s nothing like digging into your first Linux distribution, whether you’re a tech-savvy user looking to branch out or whether you’re installing it on a friend’s computer. But which distribution is actually better for beginners? Here, we’ll delve into the differences between Ubuntu and Mint, the two most popular beginner distros, and perform a little experiment to see what new users prefer.

            • Bodhi Linux 2.3.0 Released – Download DVD ISO Images

              Bodhi team are happy to announce the immediate availability of Bodhi Linux 2.3.0, a minimalistic Linux operating system based on Ubuntu that uses by default Enlightenment Desktop (E17).

  • Devices/Embedded

Free Software/Open Source

  • Algar Telecom develops open source equipment identity system

    Brazil’s Algar Telecom has decided to develop its own open source Equipment Identity Register (EIR) platform. Speaking to local portal Teletime, the executive director of operations and technology at Algar Telecom, Luis Antonio Lima, said that this is the first EIR open source in the world and that anyone can improve it, modify it or use it in their own business. The source code of the platform can be accessed at: code.google.com/p/jeir.

  • Michigan Tech’s Open Source Optics

    Doing science can be an expensive affair, but a new project from Michigan Technological University is trying to make science more affordable and more accessible.

    In a recently published paper, professors and researchers at the university outlined their plans for creating an online, open-source library of 3D printable optics hardware. According to one of the paper’s authors, associate professor Joshua Pearce, “This library operates as a free, flexible, low-cost tool set for developing both research and teaching optics hardware.”

  • Open source software and start-ups

    Open source software has been instrumental in the growth of many tech companies in Silicon Valley and around the world. The free and open source software enable start-ups to create something innovative at a very low cost, then give it away for free to see how customers like it. In this fashion, they can be very responsive in addressing the feedback from the market and create truly innovative products and services. Google and Facebook are great examples of tech companies that build their empire on open source software.

  • Open source plug-in speeds mobile app development

    A plug-in intended to make it easier for mobile developers to test applications and deploy them to the cloud is available for download.

    The open source plug-in, called the Soasta CloudTest Plugin for Jenkins, links the Jenkins continuous integration system to the Soasta Touchtest platform for testing multi-touch, gesture-based applications on the CloudBees Java platform-as-a-service. Applications would be deployed on CloudBees.

  • Press Release: Avetti.com Launches Enterprise Open Source E-Commerce Software
  • 10 ways to start contributing to open source

    After understanding a project’s capabilities and roadmap, anyone is able to start directly hacking the source code and contributing useful extensions. Because open source is a distributed, participatory meritocracy, the upside benefit is high and the barrier to entry is low—you don’t have to move, be employed by a Valley startup, give up your day job, or wait to obtain a 4 years for a degree.

  • VLC Media Player

    Then I saw it: the URL being provided was not the true URL for the VLC project, http://www.videolan.org/vlc/ , but rather “vlcmediaplayer” dot org. Clearly this is a “scraper” — someone who copies someone else’s web content to a new web site, and then tries to drive traffic to that new web site, to generate ad revenue. I must grudgingly credit them with a good choice, since VLC Media Player works for Windows, Linux, Mac, and Android — plus lots more — and viewing media is something most users want to do.

  • Are you open source enough?

    Is your project open source enough? Are you? Are you doing enough for your communities? Accusations like these are getting thrown around more and more, often in the simple form, “X isn’t really open.” It’s a question we’ve even asked ourselves from time to time when we post stories on opensource.com—is this a real example of openness? But what is “open enough?” And does it really matter?

    There comes a point in any community’s growth where the collective consciousness starts to feel threatened by newcomers. You know it’s happened on a mailing list or web forum when you see posts that start, “I miss when this group used to be…” And if you search Google for the phrase “not really open source,” you get 1,800,000 results, suggesting that the broader open source community has officially reached that time.

  • Bringing Open Source Communities closer together
  • Apache Bloodhound Leads Open Source Trac Forward
  • Free and Open—and Their Opposites

    Merriam-Webster defines a tenet as “a principle, belief, or doctrine generally held to be true; especially one held in common by members of an organization, movement, or profession.” As it happens, Linux is claimed by two doctrines that are to some degree at odds: those of free software and open source. This contention began when Eric S. Raymond published “Goodbye, ‘free software’; hello, ‘open source’”, on February 8, 1998.

  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • Mozilla Project celebrates 15 years

        The Mozilla Project is celebrating 15 years of “a better web” this week. Fifteen years ago, Netscape Communications released the source code to its web browser and mail suite and created the Mozilla Project. Netscape had been under commercial pressure as Microsoft had begun bundling Internet Explorer for free and the company took the then quite radical step of open sourcing its core software, looking to build a community around that code. Over the next few years, development continued based on that original code and in 2002, Mozilla 1.0, the first major version, was released with various improvements. Mozilla 1.0 arrived into a world where Internet Explorer had a 90 per cent share of the browser market. It was also a world in which the newly released Mozilla 1.0 would make little impact.

  • SaaS/Big Data

    • How Does Big Data Impact the Network?

      Big Data and the hype associated with it is pervasive across IT today. In its most basic definition, Big Data is typically connected to the open source Hadoop Big Data project, though others have a broader definition. No matter how you define Big Data, it’s all about large volumes of data that need to move around a network.

    • OpenStack security brief

      This video from Shmoocon 2013 is a break down of security concerns relating to OpenStack cloud software.

      OpenStack is an open source IaaS solution compatible with Amazon EC2 / S3 and Google’s GCE. The purpose of the talk is to introduce and demonstrate the working mechanics of cloud security mechanisms, or lack thereof.

    • OpenStack Grizzly Rounding Third

      The big OpenStack 2013.1 (aka Grizzly) open source cloud platform release is due out this week on 4/4.

    • Nebula’s OpenStack Hardware Offering Touts Plug-and-Play Simplicity
  • Databases

    • MySQL and the forks in the road

      At the beginning of 2008 Sun Microsystems purchased MySQL AB, and ever since then there have been divisions in the ecosystem. As with any software community or ecosystem, where there are divisions there are usually forks, both in the community and the software itself.

      Just over a year after the Sun acquisition came the announcement that Sun itself was to be bought out by Oracle. It was at this point that the cracks in the ecosystem really started to show. Many inside Sun stayed quiet – not by choice – while outside things were getting very vocal and heated.

  • Business

    • Semi-Open Source

      • Kona’s Scott DeFusco: Open Source Advocate in a Closed Source Firm

        “When we looked at a number of different factors, open source became the obvious answer to this particular project,” said Kona vice president Scott DeFusco. “That’s not to say the proprietary platforms we were using on our other products were not good for those. For us, open source was the better choice for a couple of reasons. One is keeping the cost down so we could pass on a lot of value to our users in the free version. Also, we could maximize our values when we monetized.”

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

    • GNU Spotlight with Karl Berry: 29 new GNU releases!
    • GnuCash 2.4.12 released

      The GnuCash development team proudly announces GnuCash 2.4.12, the ninth bug fix release in a series of stable of the GnuCash Free Accounting Software. With this release series, GnuCash can use an SQL database using SQLite3, MySQL or PostgreSQL. It runs on GNU/Linux, *BSD, Solaris, Microsoft Windows and Mac OSX.

    • How I earned a 286% return in less than 1 year investing in the Free Software Foundation

      At the FSF’s annual conference last year I pledged to donate 100BTC to the FSF, and did so on April 6. I bought about 121.95 bitcoins, for a price of about US$4.92/BTC (made easier thanks to Greg Maxwell’s vouching for me on #bitcoin-otc; thanks!) and haven’t given any thought to the remainder till today.

    • Guile 100 #4: tar files

      Challenge #4 in the Guile 100 Programs Project is quite simple. Write a script that will create a tar file from a list of files. It is the fourth and final challenge in this month’s theme, which is “/bin – reimplementing common Posix tools”.

      The Guile 100 Programs Project is an attempt to collaboratively generate a set of examples of how to use the GNU Guile implementation of Scheme.

    • The GNUstep Makefile Package version 2.6.4 is now available.
  • Openness/Sharing

    • Open Source Robot Mixes A Mean Drink

      For many years now, some of the more creative work in the field of robotics has been driven by open source efforts. Open source robotics platforms have flourished, and they have mostly focused on humanoid robots of the type that Willow Garage and other organizations have specialized in.

    • Open Access/Content

      • US to release Aaron Swartz papers

        The US attorney’s office in Boston agreed on Friday to release documents in the Aaron Swartz case, but the officials are seeking to have some specific identities and materials withheld as the legal wrangling continues in the investigation into the federal prosecution of the Internet activist.

        In calling for redactions of names and materials, the office of US Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz expressed concerns about the safety of individuals and organizations involved in the case.

      • #openaccess The current standard of “debate” is unacceptable; arrogant and ignorant

        I have my head down and am trying to write code – to liberate knowledge (and I haven’t forgotten #scholrev!) but occasionally have to break off and blog. Simply: the standard of debate (if it can be called such) in #openaccess is appalling. Either non-existent or fuelled by prejudice and ignorance. Since (a) many of the “debaters” and academics to whom we might look for clarity, fairness and guidance and (b) we are losing billions (sic) by not getting our act together.

    • Open Hardware

      • ZeroTurnaround Reveals an Open Source Hardware Line

        ZeroTurnaround today announced its plans to open source the company, starting with a new line of hardware products deemed “GRM2”. This marks a significant shift in business model for the Estonian software house, who has been developing JRebel, the popular development productivity tool, since 2007.

  • Programming

    • More Features Of C++14 Are Covered

      C++14 is the next update to the C++ programming language. While only considered a minor update over C++11, it will bring with it several new features.

    • LLVM/Clang 3.3 Planned For Release In June

      An Apple developer has shared plans to see LLVM 3.3 released in June of this year, following the month of May being dedicated to testing.

      Among the improvements to be found out of LLVM 3.3 include better Intel Haswell support (improved AVX2, etc), some noted performance improvements, Clang will have better C++11 support, the long-awaited AMD R600 GPU LLVM back-end, 64-bit ARM / AArch64 support, and many other features to be discussed in the coming weeks.

Leftovers

  • Facebook is still losing teens to mobile messaging apps
  • “Can I resell my MP3s?” redux—federal judge says no

    For years, many a music fan has wondered what we first posited back in 2008: “Can I resell my MP3s?”

    After all, as we’ve pointed out in the past, nearly all digital good sales are really licenses rather than sales as conventionally understood. The question here is, can such a license be bought and sold to other users?

  • Brackets Sprint 22 adds word wrap and community commits
  • Science

    • Astrophysicists: Black hole awakens to swallow planet-sized object

      Astrophysicists have witnessed the rare event of a black hole awakening from its slumber to snack on a planet-sized object in a galaxy 47 million light years away, the University of Geneva said Tuesday.

      The observation made using the European Space Agency’s INTEGRAL satellite project, revealed a black hole that had been slumbering for years chomping on a giant, low-mass object that had come too close.

  • Health/Nutrition

    • NHS at ‘huge risk’ from reforms, says healthcare chief

      New head of National Institute for Health and Care Excellence says structural changes to NHS will prove major challenge

    • Consumers Allege Perdue’s “Humane” Poultry Labels Are “False and Deceptive”

      Have you ever wondered what labels like “humanely raised” and “cage free” mean when you’re looking at a package of meat or eggs at the supermarket? Do corporations actually live up to the claims on the labels?

      Well, a consumer class action lawsuit in New Jersey is trying to bring a little truth to labeling when it comes to the humane treatment of animals. The lawsuit alleges that Perdue Farms, Inc. has misled consumers by advertising its Harvestland brand of chickens as “humane.” The suit was filed by two consumer members of the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) on behalf of a group of consumers. The case has been cleared to move forward by a federal court in New Jersey and will be heard later this year.

    • U.S. criticizes ‘unnecessary’ EU rules on genetically modified crops

      The United States on Monday criticized “unnecessary” European Union rules against genetically modified US crop imports as it prepares to enter free-trade talks with the EU.

      EU restrictions notably have resulted in delays in the approval of new GM traits “despite positive assessments by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA),” the US Trade Representative’s office said in a report on reducing trade sanitary barriers.

  • Security

    • IT Pro confession: How I helped in the BIGGEST DDoS OF ALL TIME

      I contributed to the massive DDoS attack against Spamhaus. What flowed through my network wasn’t huge – it averaged 500Kbit/sec – but it contributed. This occurred because I made a simple configuration error when setting up a DNS server; it’s fixed now, so let’s do an autopsy.

  • Defence/Police/Secrecy/Aggression

    • U.S. Lawmakers: CIA Should Keep Armed UAVs

      Pro-military lawmakers and U.S. analysts want the White House to resist shifting the CIA’s armed unmanned aircraft program to the Pentagon, citing operational and legal reasons to keep the spy agency in the targeted-killing business.

    • CIA to Promote Head of “Black Site” Where Torture Occurred?

      According to media reports, the acting director of the CIA’s clandestine service has, for the last month, been an official who was “in the chain of command” in the CIA’s torture program in the years after 9/11. According to a book by Jose Rodriguez, the former head of the clandestine service, this unnamed official even headed one of the early CIA “black sites”—notorious secret prisons set up overseas to torture detainees. Media reports indicate that the unnamed career officer also reportedly signed off on the destruction of 92 videotapes documenting some of the most brutal mistreatment carried out under the CIA program.

    • Are US drones ethical?

      Whether drones should be used in the US is the wrong question. Americans should be asking: Is it ethical to use drones anywhere? Is it fair to search for security for ourselves at the expense of perpetual insecurity for others?

    • Drone policy hurts the U.S.’s image in Yemen

      The United States has played a significant role in Yemen’s transition, which ushered out former president Ali Abdullah Saleh, in exchange for immunity, and inaugurated a unity government and consensus president that are overseeing a national dialogue launched last month. The United States has pledged support for the dialogue, which will lead to a constitutional referendum and new elections.

    • ‘Drones’ changing hands

      The Obama administration seems poised to order that all kinetic attacks on al Qaeda or affiliated bad guys be conducted by elements of the United States military, knee-capping the Central Intelligence Agency’s paramilitary capability and effectively ending its drone program in Pakistan.

    • Strong American role still exists at Afghan-controlled prison

      Days after the Parwan detention center was ceremoniously transferred to Afghan control, its courtroom was full of American bailiffs, American advisers and American attorneys.

      The facility itself — renamed the Afghan National Detention Facility — is on one of the country’s most fortified American bases. When an Afghan defense attorney and prosecutor this week began arguing the case of Abdul Shakor, an alleged Taliban commander detained since 2009, all of the available evidence came from American forces.

    • The drone secrets we should see – Jameel Jaffer
    • US Aids Honduran Police Despite Death Squad Fears

      But The Associated Press has found that all police units are under the control of Director General Juan Carlos Bonilla, nicknamed the “Tiger,” who in 2002 was accused of three extrajudicial killings and links to 11 more deaths and disappearances. He was tried on one killing and acquitted. The rest of the cases were never fully investigated.

      Honduran law prohibits any police unit from operating outside the command of the director general, according to a top Honduran government security official, who would only speak on condition of anonymity. He said that is true in practice as well as on paper.

    • MI6 ‘arranged Cold War killing’ of Congo prime minister
    • Camp Nama: British personnel reveal horrors of secret US base in Baghdad

      Detainees captured by SAS and SBS squads subjected to human-rights abuses at detention centre, say British witnesses

  • Cablegate

    • CIA employee/agent access to WikiLeaks
    • Australian lawyer to run ‘serious’ Assange senate campaign
    • JULIAN ASSANGE’S SENATE BID
    • Assange appoints British monarchy opponent for Australian Senate bid

      Former Australian Republican Movement head and barrister Greg Barns said on Monday he would be campaign director for the WikiLeaks Party spearheading Assange’s rare absentee bid for a Senate seat in Australia’s September 14 election, which even if successful would not bring him any legal protection.

    • Icelandic MP and Wikileaks volunteer goes to the US – Might get arrested

      “If I don’t come back home I hope that there will not be silence about that here at home” said Ms. Birgitta Jonsdottir, MP and volunteer for Wikileaks. She is the co-founder of a new political party called The Pirate Party Iceland. The party will be running for parliament in the upcoming elections on April 27th.

      Birgitta Jonsdottir will travel to the US this week to celebrate that there are three years since the tape from Iraq was published by Wikileaks, where the US army attacked civilians.

      Birgitta has not gone to America for almost three years. During that time the Ministry of Justice in the US has ordered Twitter to hand over all data on Birgitta. Bradley Manning has also been arrested, he is kept at an American army prison.

    • New Laws Target Wikileaks

      As Julian Assange tilts at the Senate, new laws have been passed that will make it harder for organisations like Wikileaks to operate legally – and there are more to come, writes Matthew da Silva
      The Labor Government is tightening up Australian law in areas that will have a direct impact on organisations such as WikiLeaks. Only the Greens are challenging the new bills in parliament, and they are receiving scant media attention.

    • The WikiLeaks Grand Jury

      As Alexa O’Brien reported Tuesday, the US Department of Justice has provided the latest confirmation that the grand jury investigation into WikiLeaks remains currently ongoing. That means it has been actively investigating the whistleblower website now for at least about 26 months (the Guardian first reported back in January 2011 that a subpoena seeking data on WikiLeaks had “appear[ed] to confirm for the first time the existence of a secret grand jury” empanelled to investigate individuals associated with the organisation. Prior to that, in late November 2010, the White House confirmed that there was an “active, ongoing criminal investigation” into WikiLeaks. And in July 2010, the Department of Defence stated that it had requested that the FBI help with an investigation related to WikiLeaks disclosures and that it “go wherever it needs to go”).

    • Department of Justice spokesman for Eastern District of Virginia confirms grand jury investigation into WikiLeaks ‘ongoing’
    • Bradley Manning’s Nobel Peace Prize
  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • Out of control nightmare: tremors increasing at massive 13-acre Louisiana sinkhole

      The head of Louisiana’s Department of Natural Resources named 13 scientists and other experts Friday to serve on a blue-ribbon commission tasked with determining the long-term stability of the area around northern Assumption Parish’s sinkhole. The 13-acre sinkhole and consequences of its emergence and continued growth, such as methane trapped under the Bayou Corne area, have forced the evacuation of 350 residents for more than seven months.

    • Low-wage nation: Seven of 10 most common jobs pay less than $30,000

      Part of the corporate-propelled race to the bottom is that we’re constantly told to expect less—if you’re a food prep worker making $18,720, at least you’re not making minimum wage, amiright? There’s this vast campaign to normalize low wages and set them up as the basic standard most of us should expect, the flip side of the increasing wealth of the top one percent.

  • Finance

    • Dow Chemical Loses $1 Billion in Deductions in Tax Case

      Dow Chemical Co. (DOW)’s claim to $1 billion in tax deductions was based on transactions with sham partnerships promoted by Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (GS) and law firm King & Spalding LLP, a federal judge ruled, throwing out the company’s bid to recover the money.

      The Internal Revenue Service correctly rejected the tax benefits created by the complex partnerships from 1993 to 2003 because the transactions were designed to exploit perceived weaknesses in the tax code and not for legitimate business purposes, U.S. District Judge Brian Jackson said in a ruling filed yesterday in federal court in Baton Rouge, Louisiana,.

    • David Stockman’s American Economic Horror Story

      For all this moral indignation, however, he never gets around to explaining what exactly is wrong about “printing money.” It’s certainly possible for an economy to have too much money–that’s how you get inflation, generally. But doesn’t it stand to reason that if you can have too much money, you can have too little? And maybe you might have too little if your economy has just lost $10 trillion in wealth due to the collapse of a housing bubble? (Stockman complains about how the Fed “digitally printed new money at the astounding rate of $600 million per hour”–which would replace the wealth lost in the bubble’s collapse in a less-than-astonishing two years.)

    • Thousands Protest the UK Government’s Brutal Austerity

      Britain’s government has introduced sweeping changes to the country’s welfare, justice, health and tax systems, including a “bedroom tax” that will reduce housing subsidies that primarily benefit poor people. The levy ostensibly aims to “tackle overcrowding and encourage a more efficient use of social housing,” resulting in an estimated million “social housing” households losing 14-25 percent of their housing benefits.

    • Outrage In UK After Conservative Politician Says He Could Live On $11.50 A Day
    • Is Germany too powerful for Europe?

      Twenty years ago, Germany’s economy was stagnating. Today, as the eurozone crisis deepens, this giant is keeping Europe afloat. But what does it want in return? Stuart Jeffries talks to German sociologist Ulrich Beck, who believes that his country has become a political monster

    • Banks gone bad: Our evolved morality has failed us

      ROB a bank and you risk a long stretch in jail. Run a bank whose dubious behaviour leads to global economic collapse and you risk nothing of the sort, more likely a handsome pay-off.

    • Millionaires’ reign: UK’s rulers ‘out of touch’ with common folk

      Britain’s new political elite is an assortment of multi-millionaires who studied at exclusive universities. But down on the streets there is a growing sentiment that those running the country are detached from those they lead.

      The latest example of how a few careless words by a millionaire in power triggers anger from the people affected by his governmental decisions comes from Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith. On Monday, he claimed in a live radio talk show that if he had to he could live on 53 pounds (US$80) a week.

    • Egyptians Brace for Austerity as Govt. Seeks IMF Loan

      Wednesday, representatives from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) will arrive in Cairo to enter into new rounds of negotiations, regarding a proposed $4bn loan to the country.
      Egypt, which has continued to struggle with social and economic difficulties since the political unrest of 2011 that resulted in the ousting of former President Hosni Mubarak, is seeking the IMF aid in the hopes of bolstering its rapidly deteriorating economy.
      Egypt’s current President Mohammed Morsi is reported to have initiated negotiations with IMF in November. However, he was forced to delay finalization of any potential initial deals until December, due to political divisions throughout the country over the extent of his executive powers. In a statement to reporters, cabinet spokesperson Alaa al-Hadidy ruled out the possibility of any emergency loans, in lieu of talks with the IMF, stating that despite its financial strains, Egypt would not experience a “crisis” in relation to the importing of essential goods.

    • Everyone’s Rich Again–Problem Solved!

      Friday’s USA Today front page (3/29/13) declared, “We’re Feeling Rich Again.” A subhead, pointing to a related sidebar article, recommends that we should “show this bull some love.” That doesn’t mean what you might think.

      But the right question to ask is who precisely “we” might be.

    • Worms, Pond Scum and Economists

      The effort to blame the awful plight of the young on Social Security and Medicare is picking up steam.

      In recent weeks, there were several pieces in The Washington Post and The New York Times that either implicitly or explicitly blamed older workers and retirees for the bad economic plight facing young people today. There is now a full-court press to cut Social Security and Medicare benefits, ostensibly out of a desire to help young workers today and in the future.

      Just to be clear, there is no doubt that young workers face dismal economic prospects at the moment.

    • It’s a stunt! Iain Duncan Smith dismisses demands to live on £53 a week

      Iain Duncan Smith dismissed demands for him to try to make ends meet on £53 a week as a “complete stunt” and insisted he had experienced life “on the breadline” as ministers confronted their critics over wider-ranging cuts to benefits.

      The Work and Pensions Secretary was backed by the Chancellor George Osborne in arguing that welfare reforms were essential to helping recipients back into work and tackling Britain’s previously burgeoning benefits bill. They believe the majority of voters – particularly lower-paid workers – back the Coalition’s moves to trim welfare spending.

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • At Banks, Board Pay Soars Amid Cutbacks

      Wall Street pay, while lucrative, isn’t what it used to be — unless you are a board member.

      Since the financial crisis, compensation for the directors of the nation’s biggest banks has continued to rise even as the banks themselves, facing difficult markets and regulatory pressures, are reining in bonuses and pay.

  • Censorship

    • Obama’s Crackdown on Whistleblowers

      In the annals of national security, the Obama administration will long be remembered for its unprecedented crackdown on whistleblowers. Since 2009, it has employed the World War I–era Espionage Act a record six times to prosecute government officials suspected of leaking classified information. The latest example is John Kiriakou, a former CIA officer serving a thirty-month term in federal prison for publicly identifying an intelligence operative involved in torture. It’s a pattern: the whistleblowers are punished, sometimes severely, while the perpetrators of the crimes they expose remain free.

    • Saudi Arabia ‘threatens Skype ban’

      Encrypted messaging services such as Skype, Viber and WhatsApp could be blocked in Saudi Arabia, the telecommunications regulator there is reported to have warned.

    • The Institute for Cultural Diplomacy and Wikipedia

      A month ago, Mark Donfried from the Institute for Cultural Diplomacy (ICD) — an organization dedicated to promoting open dialogue — sent me this letter threatening me with legal action because of contributions I’ve made to Wikipedia. Yesterday, he sent me this followup threat.

      According to the letters, Donfried has threatened me with legal action because I participated in a discussion on Wikipedia that resulted in his organization’s article being deleted. It is not anything I wrote in any Wikipedia article that made Donfried so upset — although Donfried is also unhappy about at least one off-hand comment I made during the deletion discussion on a now-deleted Wikipedia process page. Donfried is unhappy that my actions, in small part, have resulted in his organization not having an article in Wikipedia. He is able to threaten me personally because — unlike many people — I edit Wikipedia using my real, full, name.

  • Privacy

    • Congress Planning To Debate CISPA Behind Closed Doors; No Public Scrutiny Allowed

      The truth is that this is yet another way to try to hide from the public on this issue. Congress doesn’t want an open discussion on the many problems with CISPA, so it does what it does best: try to hide things away and rush them through when (hopefully) not enough people are looking. It makes you wonder just what CISPA’s supporters are so worried about. Congress is supposed to work for the public, not hide things away from the public. This isn’t a situation where they’re discussing classified info or plans — but merely a bill focused on information sharing between the government and private companies. Any markup on CISPA needs to be public.

    • Bills Would Mandate Warrant for GPS Tracking, Cellphone Location Data

      Two bills introduced Thursday in the House and Senate would compel law enforcement agents to obtain a warrant before affixing a GPS tracker to a vehicle, using a cell site simulator to locate someone through their mobile device or obtaining geolocation data from third-party service providers.

    • Supreme Court: Police Dog Powers Do Not Include Warrantless Searches of a Person’s Home
    • US Government’s Failure To Protect Public Privacy Is Driving Business Overseas

      As we’ve covered over and over again, the US government has made it clear that it wants access to your data. With things like the FISA Amendments Act, ECPA and various other laws, law enforcement plays the FUD card repeatedly, insisting that it needs to be able to go in and see data to “protect” the public. There’s very little basis to make this claim. And, worse, by decimating online privacy, the US government may actively be driving business outside of the US to foreign countries that have stricter privacy laws that actually protect data from government snooping.

    • It’s time to update online privacy
    • Whistleblowing The NSA
    • Government Fights for Use of Spy Tool That Spoofs Cell Towers

      The government’s use of a secret spy tool was on trial on Thursday in a showdown between an accused identity thief and more than a dozen federal lawyers and law enforcement agents who were fighting to ensure that evidence obtained via a location-tracking tool would be admissible in court.

    • When a Secretive Stingray Cell Phone Tracking “Warrant” Isn’t a Warrant

      An Arizona federal court this afternoon will be the battleground over the government’s use of a “Stingray” surveillance device in a closely watched criminal case, United States v. Rigmaiden. And in an important development, new documents revealed after an ACLU of Northern California Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request should leave the government with some explaining to do.

    • Facial recognition and GPS tracking: TrapWire company conducting even more surveillance

      An internationally-spread Orwellian surveillance system uncovered by RT has been linked to a software company that collects the GPS coordinates of cell phone users in over 100 major cities.

    • The Dangers of Surveillance

      From the Fourth Amendment to George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four, our law and literature are full of warnings about state scrutiny of our lives. These warnings are commonplace, but they are rarely very specific. Other than the vague threat of an Orwellian dystopia, as a society we don’t really know why surveillance is bad, and why we should be wary of it. To the extent the answer has something to do with “privacy,” we lack an understanding of what “privacy” means in this context, and why it matters. Developments in government and corporate practices, however, have made this problem more urgent. Although we have laws that protect us against government surveillance, secret government programs cannot be challenged until they are discovered. And even when they are, courts frequently dismiss challenges to such programs for lack of standing, under the theory that mere surveillance creates no tangible harms, as the Supreme Court did recently in the case of Clapper v. Amnesty International. We need a better account of the dangers of surveillance.

    • DOJ Emails Show Feds Were Less Than “Explicit” With Judges On Cell Phone Tracking Tool

      A Justice Department document obtained by the ACLU of Northern California shows that federal investigators were routinely using a sophisticated cell phone tracking tool known as a “stingray,” but hiding that fact from federal magistrate judges when asking for permission to do so.

    • Attorney General Eric Holder: If the President Does It, It’s Legal
    • Kim Dotcom Illegal Surveillance And Response: Timeline

      The surveillance by the GCSB (Government Communications Security Bureau) at the request of OFCANZ (Organised and Financial Crime Agency New Zealand – an agency hosted within the New Zealand Police) was publically revealed in September 2012 and admitted to be illegal as Dotcom, his colleague Bram van der Kolk and their families were New Zealand residents.

    • Mobile Phone Use Patterns: The New Fingerprint

      Mobile phone use may be a more accurate identifier of individuals than even their own fingerprints, according to research published on the web site of the scientific journal Nature.

    • Data Protection Regulation Debate: 1st part
    • Time for action on Google’s privacy policy

      In a statement issued today, it was announced six European data protection authorities are to launch coordinated and simultaneous enforcement actions relating to Google’s privacy policy.

  • Civil Rights

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • Korean Lawmakers and Human Rights Experts Challenge Three Strikes Law

        In July 2009, South Korea became the first country to introduce a graduated response or “three strikes” law. The statute allows the Minister of Culture or the Korean Copyright Commission to tell ISPs and Korean online service providers to suspend the accounts of repeated infringers and block or delete infringing content online. There is no judicial process, no court of appeal, and no opportunity to challenge the accusers.

        The entertainment industry has repeatedly pointed to South Korea as a model for a controlled Internet that should be adopted everywhere else. In the wake of South Korea’s implementation, graduated response laws have been passed in France and the United Kingdom, and ISPs in the United States have voluntarily accepted a similar scheme.

      • Stop the Secret Copyright Agenda: Don’t Trade Away Our Digital Rights
      • South Korea Considers Dumping Draconian Copyright Law Forced On It By The US

        As Mike noted a couple of days ago, international trade agreements often have the effect of constraining the power of national legislatures. Indeed, that’s doubtless one of the reasons why they have become so popular in recent years: they allow backroom deals between politicians and lobbyists to set the agenda for law-making around the world, without the need for any of that pesky democratic oversight nonsense. In particular, the trade agreement between South Korea and the US is turning out to be a key limiting factor for both TPP and what US politicians might try to do about phone unlocking. This makes two recent moves to loosen South Korea’s harsh copyright laws potentially important far beyond that country’s borders.

      • Deep Dive: Prenda Law Is Dead

        Today the Prenda Law enterprise encountered an extinction-level event. Faced with a federal judge’s demand that they explain their litigation conduct, Prenda Law’s attorney principals — and one paralegal — invoked their right to remain silent under the Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution. As a matter of individual prudence, that may have been the right decision. But for the nationwide Prenda Law enterprise, under whatever name or guise or glamour, it spelled doom.

04.01.13

Links 1/4/2013: April First Headlines and More

Posted in News Roundup at 7:56 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • DNA Is The Linux Of The Natural World

    DNA Is The Linux Of The Natural WorldWe probably all vaguely assume that computers will overthrow us someday, which may be why it’s so unsettling to learn that computer code is evolving much like genetic code. By comparing bacterial genomes to Linux, researchers have found “survival of the fittest” acting in computer programming.

  • Bullseye from 1,000 yards: Shooting the $17,000 Linux-powered rifle

    My photographer, Steve, squints through a computerized scope squatting atop a big hunting rifle. We’re outdoors at a range just north of Austin, Texas, and the wind is blowing like crazy—enough so that we’re having to dial in more and more wind adjustment on the rifle’s computer. The spotter and I monitor Steve’s sight through an iPad linked to the rifle via Wi-Fi, and we can see exactly what he’s seeing through the scope. Steve lines up on his target downrange—a gently swinging metal plate with a fluorescent orange circle painted at its center—and depresses a button to illuminate it with the rifle’s laser.

  • What’s in a Name?

    Katherine Noyes over on the Linux Advocates site has resurrected the GNU/Linux vs Linux naming debate, once again. To the uninitiated, the debate centers around if we should refer to the operating system as “GNU-slash-Linux” or simply as “Linux”, with the Free Software Foundation claiming that referring to the operating system merely as Linux gives undue credit to the kernel, without proper attribution to the GNU tools that make up the majority of the OS. Personally, I find the debate to be a waste of time. It is unlikely that anyone outside of a very small group of dedicated loyalists will care about the distinction. However, it does bring up a more interesting point, what about going a layer higher? What happens when distributions stop referring to themselves as Linux derivatives, come to market only under their name?

  • Desktop

    • Chromebook Pixel: Spoiling me for other Chromebooks

      I have been using a Samsung Series 5 550 Chromebook since picking it up last year. The Samsung is a great laptop that happens to run Chrome OS, something that works very well for me. I like everything about the Samsung. Then Google sent me a Chromebook Pixel and spoiled me.

      The Series 5 550 Chromebook works very well for me. It runs Chrome OS nicely and is a super work machine that meets my needs. There is not really anything I don’t like about the Samsung, but it’s no longer enough.

  • Kernel Space

    • Graphics Stack

      • Another OpenGL 4 Feature For Mesa Is Published

        Earlier this morning I wrote about Chris Forbes committing texture storage multi-sample support to mainline Mesa and the Intel DRI driver. This OpenGL 4.x extension is now accompanied by a new “RFC” patch-set for providing Mesa support for another GL4 feature.

        Chris Forbes’ newly-published patches on Sunday morning are for ARB_texture_gather, a feature mandated by OpenGL 4.0 and previously not tackled within the Mesa/Gallium3D world.

      • “Substantial Progress” With Mesa Geometry Shaders

        Open-source Intel developers have advanced their OpenGL geometry shaders work for Mesa, namely for the Intel DRI driver, and call it “substantial progress and definitely a reason to celebrate.” This important GL3 feature is nearing a working state but there’s still some work ahead before it will be merged.

      • LLVM 3.3 Picks Up More Support For Intel AVX2

        Beyond LLVM 3.3 having performance optimizations, one of many other features coming to this next compiler infrastructure update is greater support for Intel’s AVX2 instruction set extensions.

        AVX2 is the first major update to the Advanced Vector Extensions. AVX2 is also known as “Haswell New Instructions” and will be found in the Intel Haswell CPUs introduced in the coming months. AVX2 tacks in gather support, expands most integer AVX instructions to 256-bits, 3-operand FMA support, vector shifts, and other new functionality.

      • An OpenGL 4.x Feature Gets Crossed Off In Mesa

        Support for the OpenGL ARB_texture_storage_multisample extension is now implemented within Mesa and is exposed by the Intel DRI driver.

    • Benchmarks

      • Ivy Bridge Doesn’t Change Much With Modern Kernels

        For those wondering whether Intel “Ivy Bridge” hardware is still being made faster with each succeeding Linux kernel release, here are benchmarks from an Intel Ultrabook looking at the Ivy Bridge performance on recent kernel releases going up to the yet-to-be-out Linux 3.9 kernel.

        A few days back I carried out a Linux kernel performance comparison from an ASUS Ultrabook with Intel Core i3 3217U “Ivy Bridge” processor with 4GB of RAM, 500GB Hitachi HDD, and 24GB SanDisk SSD. Ubuntu 13.04 x86_64 was in use while the Linux 3.6, 3.7, 3.8, and 3.9 (Git) mainline/vanilla kernels were tested.

  • Applications

    • New features in Cairo-Dock 3.2
    • Instructionals/Technical

    • Wine or Emulation

    • Games

      • A Thought on What Holds Linux Gaming Back

        All the talk nowadays if of “unification” or to paraphrase Mark Shuttleworth and Ubuntu the “availability of a single interface for all devices.” And with all this talk I began to wonder why more gaming engine’s aren’t jumping on board.

        The recent release of Unity3d 4 was all the rage because it meant that an incredibly popular engine was coming to Linux, and thus all unity3d games developed with the new engine could in fact run on Linux (granted a Linux version was released). In my personal opinion, Unity3d is great, but when compared to the more AAA engines like the Unreal, FrostBite and CDProjectRed’s RED Engine just to name a few, Unity3d falls a bit flat in my eyes.

      • Half-Life 4 added to the SteamDB for Linux!

        That’s right, you heard it here first folks, Half-Life 4 has been added to the SteamDB! It includes hints of others things too.

      • Two from icculus now on Steam: Dungeon Defenders & Postal
      • New Racing Game for Linux
      • Serious Sam 3: BFE for Linux Gets Biggest Patch Since Launch

        Serious Sam 3: BFE is a very serious first-person shooter, as the name suggests, and it has just received a major update that greatly improves its performance.

        The Croteam studio has been hard at work and it is trying its best to make Serious Sam 3: BFE one of the best shooters for Linux.

        The latest update for the game has been promoted from the Beta to stable. It’s probably one of the largest patches launched so far and the number of Linux related fixes and improvements is quite impressive.

      • Humble Troubles Again, more platform specific bundles

        They have also just launched their Mobile Bundles which are for Android only, so no Windows, Mac or Linux (I know, I know Android is part Linux that’s an argument for another day) versions, which makes me wonder just how the Windows crowd feels since they have been left out this time, too.

      • Mir, ARM & Valve Excite Linux Users This Month

        March 2013 was another interesting month for Linux users. The Mir Display Server, ARM on Linux advancements, and Valve’s continued Linux game play continued to excite readers.

        This month on Phoronix at the time of publishing there were 242 original news articles and 11 multi-page featured articles. The number of news postings and articles is down from February when there was FOSDEM plus advertising campaigns on the site were more lucrative… Phoronix.com is almost entirely ad-driven so please view this site without AdBlock or other cruft. And/or please consider subscribing to Phoronix Premium for ad-free viewing as well as viewing multi-page articles on a single-page.

      • Valve Announces Half-Life 4 For Linux

        Valve has added Half-Life 4 to Steam and it will be a title for Linux without mentioning OS X or Windows support.

        As can be seen from SteamDB, Half-Life 4 was added today to Steam, well ahead of the Half-Life 3 debut. The Half-Life 4 entry also hints at binary support for the Steam Box, Valve’s forthcoming console. The Half-Life 4 entry also notes use of “Source Engine 2″ for the game.

      • Valve Releases Several New Linux Game Ports
      • There Isn’t Too Much Progress On Unigine Linux Titles

        For those that have followed Phoronix over the years know that I am a big supporter of the Unigine game/3D engine. The engine delivers absolutely beautiful graphics and there is first-rate Linux support. The developers at Unigine Corp are very Linux-friendly. Unfortunately, games and other software based upon Unigine aren’t too quick to come to the Linux gaming scene.

      • Valve Has Been Working Hard On Linux For One Year

        Today marks one year since an important milestone in the public history of Valve’s Steam client and Source Engine coming to Linux.

  • Distributions

    • New Releases

    • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandrake/Mandriva Family

    • Red Hat Family

      • Red Hat’s fourth-quarter sales dropped

        Despite the growth of Linux adoption in enterprise and business use, Red Hat, the large company that sells Linux operating-system software fell after reporting fiscal fourth-quarter sales that missed estimates as some customers stopped purchasing, due to the current global economic situation.

      • Fedora

    • Debian Family

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Smart Scopes Get Removed From Ubuntu 13.04

            It’s been decided at the last minute that “smart scopes”, a feature of the new Unity desktop, will not ship in Ubuntu 13.04.

            Smart Scopes were supposed to be an intelligent server-side service for deciding if a search query should be pushed through a particular scope, among other benefits. Smart scopes were said to be self-learning and aimed to provide more relevant results for users of the Unity desktop.

          • Ubuntu 13.04 will disable Dash online search by default: Mark Shuttleworth

            Mark Shuttleworth, the founder of Ubuntu, has finally listened to critics and EFF and said that the much controversial online search feature of Dash will be disabled by default in Ubuntu 13.04, which will be released later this month. Canonical was working closely with EFF, FSF and the EU privacy advisors and found it in best interest of its users.

            “Users are our #1 priority and not our business interests,” said Shuttleworth in a statement, “the foundation of Ubuntu is people and if some decisions were made which put user’s privacy at risk, that would be very un-Ubuntu. We never shied away from trying out new things and we never hesitated in changing a decision for a greater good.”

          • User Interaction with Ubuntu Components
          • Ubuntu Powered Promo Booth? You Bet [Ubuntu In The Wild]

            Every day we walk past and interact with machines that run Linux, without ever noticing.

          • Ubuntu 8.04 (Hardy Heron) server, 10.04 (Lucid Lynx) desktop and 11.10 (Oneiric Ocelot) reaching End of Life on May 9 2013
          • End of life for three Ubuntu editions on 9 May
          • Monitor ‘Zeitgeist’ Logging Activities in Ubuntu using ‘Zeitgeist Explorer’

            ‘Zeitgeist‘ is a computer based user activity logging framework for the GNU/Linux operating system that keeps a track of your frequently opened files (text, audio, videos etc), visited web links, conversations that you had with others (through ‘Chat’ apps) etc.

            The database is a semantic one and so it makes it easy to identify patters, thus improves the ability to predict user activities. And since this database can be accessed by other applications (if they support ‘Zeitgeist’), they can predict or guess the user’s needs more accurately and thus improving the user experience.

          • Experimental Compiz, Unity Work Continues

            While the future is with Mir and Unity Next, work on the short-term includes more performance optimizations for the Unity desktop and Compiz window manager.

            While Sam Spilsbury no longer works at Canonical and has some dissenting views over the future direction of Ubuntu Linux, he has dabbled with some performance optimizations recently for Compiz/Nux.

          • issue 71
          • Flavours and Variants

  • Devices/Embedded

Free Software/Open Source

  • The Biggest Failure in Open Source Is…

    I have been a self-employed technical person for the past 38 years. I my living based solely on my output. Since 1998 a major secret weapon has been the use of SR. Certainly, you can get speech recognition from the Debian pool. While some good folks over in Japan have made some major advancements over the years, it is still a toy. This is inherent in the complexity of speech recognition software.

    In 1998 IBM had a Linux version of SR known as ViaVoice. It worked about as well as any other SR offering of the day. IBM dropped the product. At a conference I asked an IBM executive, Why? The answer was: “We did not get enough gross revenue to cover the cost of the box manufacturing to put the CD in it.”

    In my experience the Open Source community is its own worst enemy. Putting on the rose-colored glasses, and disappointing those who just want to ‘get something done’. Let’s look at a real world example.

  • Events

  • Web Browsers

  • Funding

    • U.S. Defense Agency Feeds Python

      The U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has given 3 million dollars to Texas-based software provider Continuum Analytics with a view to helping fund the improvement of the Python language’s data processing and visualization power for big data tasks.

  • BSD

    • DragonFlyBSD 3.4 Coming Soon, Focuses On DPorts

      The DragonFlyBSD 3.4 release is anticipated for release in mid-April and one of the features to this next BSD operating system update is the formation of DPorts, a derivative of the FreeBSD ports collection.

      DPorts is DragonFly’s derivative of FreeBSD Ports and will ultimately replace pkgsrc and the other pkg_* tools on the operating system. These older tools also reached an end-of-life state on FreeBSD.

  • Project Releases

  • Licensing

    • Russians Selectively Blocking Internet

      The Russian government in recent weeks has been making use of a new law that gives it the power to block Internet content that it deems illegal or harmful to children.

  • Openness/Sharing

    • Will Ford’s open-source car API drive us to distraction?

      That’s perhaps why it wasn’t all that surprising that Ford’s EVP of Global Marketing, James Farley, didn’t use his keynote address at the opening day of the New York International Auto Show to announce some line extension or new braking system, but rather to introduce a mobile app competition.

    • Urban activists hack their way toward open government

      OAKLAND, CA—Four years ago, Code For America (CFA) was founded with the mission to “help governments work better for everyone with the people and the power of the Web.” Within two years, the San Francisco-based nonprofit set up a fellowship program, inviting American cities to receive a team of three young motivated developers, activists, and policy planners. The Washington Post’s description captured what everyone was already thinking: CFA is the “technology world’s equivalent of the Peace Corps or Teach for America.”

    • Open Access/Content

  • Standards/Consortia

    • Making WebRTC Simple with conversat.io

      WebRTC is awesome, but it’s a bit unapproachable. Last week, my colleagues and I at &yet released a couple of tools we hope will help make it more tinkerable and pose a real risk of actually being useful.

Leftovers

03.31.13

Links 31/3/2013: Linux 3.8.5 Out, B0ng Bias Against Ubuntu

Posted in News Roundup at 11:01 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Software Company Anahata To Use InSync For Google Drive Sync on Linux

    On Friday 24th of March, Pablo Rodriguez Pina, founder and co-director of the Perth (Western Australia) based software company announced the company will be InSync to sync Google Drive folders on PCs running any Linux distros.

  • The World IS Changing…Ask Robots

    Today, I read how the United Space Alliance, a NASA contractor, started a migration from Windows to Linux here. The article includes this interesting comment by Keith Chuvala:

    “We migrated key functions from Windows to Linux because we needed an operating system that was stable and reliable – one that would give us in-house control. So if we needed to patch, adjust or adapt, we could.”

  • My last comment on “Linux” vs “GNU/Linux”

    On Linux Advocates, Katherine Noyes recently raised the old question of whether the operating system should be called Linux or GNU/Linux. It’s a topic I don’t think much about these days, although I’ve had some unusual perspectives on it over the years.

    You probably know the argument: given that the operating system was originally the result of cooperation between Linux kernel developers and the members of The GNU Project, both should be given credit in the name. True, countless other projects are involved, but the reference is to the core operating system, and to mention one without the other is to write the excluded founding organization out of history. Or so free software supporters maintain, especially Richard Stallman, who has sometimes refused to be interviewed without a promise that GNU/Linux be used.

    Over the years, I’ve flip-flopped on the point several times. When I was a product manager and marketing director, I favored “Linux” simply because it was shorter and less clumsy-looking than “GNU/Linux,” and therefore made for better copy.

    However, as I became more involved in the community, I started having second thoughts. It wasn’t just that Stallman has a point — and Stallman, for all that he gets tiresome repeating the same ideas over and over, has an understanding of the implications of language that few of his critics can match.

    Rather, I couldn’t help noticing that many of the projects I admired most, such as Debian, used “GNU/Linux”. The more I thought, the more I realized that I was a free software supporter, so using “GNU/Linux” seemed the logical thing for me to do. If nothing else, it immediately served notice about where I stood in relation to free software and open source. I was never pedantic about its use, and I never went around correcting anyone, either in person or indirectly as I transcribed an interview, but otherwise I always used “GNU/Linux” where I could.

  • Is Bing biased against Ubuntu?

    As many of you know, part of my popularity analysis of GNU/Linux distributions includes search engine results. One thing I immediately noticed when I started analyzing the data was how fewer results Bing has compared to Google specifically for the term “Ubuntu Linux”. At first, I thought that perhaps Bing simply hasn’t indexed as much as Google and it will catch up. But over several ranking periods now, Bing is still, in my opinion, unusually low in “Ubuntu Linux” results.

  • Say Hi to J065514.3+540858

    For the last couple of years, I have been working on building a 5 meter radio telescope for educational purposes in my free time. Its primary purpose is to map neutral hydrogen distribution in the milky way. Hydrogen, the simplest atom, shines at the radio frequency of 1.42 Ghz (or 21 cm line), and we use multistage amplifiers to boost the very weak radio signal to something that can be processed by the electronics of a spectrometer.

  • Server

  • Audiocasts/Shows

  • Kernel Space

    • Production-ready ZFS offers cosmic-scale storage for Linux

      The maintainers of the native Linux port of the ZFS high-reliability filesystem have announced that the most recent release, version 0.6.1, is officially ready for production use.

      “Over two years of use by real users has convinced us ZoL [ZFS on Linux] is ready for wide scale deployment on everything from desktops to super computers,” developer Brian Behlendorf wrote in a mailing list post on Wednesday.

    • Linux Kernel 3.8.5 Is Now Available for Download

      Greg Kroah-Hartman announced a few minutes ago, March 28, the immediate availability for download of the fifth maintenance release for the stable Linux 3.8 kernel series.

      Linux kernel 3.8.5 comprised lots of updated drivers (USB, Ethernet, i915, Radeon, etc.), filesystem improvements (EXT4, CIFSfs, JBD2, etc.), a couple of ARM fixes for Tegra chips, as well as networking (IPv4 and IPv6) and sound enhancements.

    • Graphics Stack

      • Why Wayland & Weston Were Forked

        Last week, Wayland/Weston was forked by a long-time contributor, Scott Moreau. The fork of the Wayland/Weston display server ended up becoming known as Northfield/Norwood, following disagreements within the Wayland development camp. Scott Moreau was ultimately banned from the Wayland mailing list and IRC channel, so he’s written an exclusive, independent article for Phoronix to explain his actions and why he felt a fork of the Wayland display server protocol and the reference Weston compositor were necessary.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments/WMs

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

      • Linus Torvalds’ Subsurface planning to switch to Qt

        Subsurface, the dive-tracking program written by none other than Linus Torvalds, is considering moving to Qt.

      • Distillation

        Wow, things got crazy with my two previous posts about KDE’s Git corruption troubles.

        Unfortunately, what became obvious from the comments on this blog (and, I assume, elsewhere, although I didn’t read comments on any other sites) was that the essential message was, almost universally, completely lost. I wrote the original post because KDE is an open-source project and we’ve never been about hiding issues from the community at large, so I felt it was perfectly fair to be open and honest about the troubles we had, in the hopes that it could help other projects from encountering them. Rather than take something useful away from it, most people seemed to take the Gawker approach. That’s fine, and I take no offense from people shooting the messenger when it’s clear they didn’t actually read past the headlines, but the point was to make people – especially other open-source projects – think about their own systems and their procedures. If I helped one other project avoid data loss because they reexamined their own systems, then great.

      • Kolab: David and Goliath

        Groupware is a tough domain to break into. With competition from giants the likes of Lotus Notes and Exchange, how can an open source offering, like Kolab, ever hope to compete?

    • GNOME Desktop/GTK

      • Nautilus Tips and Tweaks,openSUSE 12.3, GNOME 3.6

        Nautilus has undergone massive changes in recent versions and it is going to be a challenge figuring out a few things. The following long winded article would be useful in figuring out various “Hidden” functionalities of Nautilus. But before doing anything, do Configure Community Repositories openSUSE 12.3

      • GNOME 3.8 Released
      • Indexing preferences in GNOME 3.8

        GNOME 3 is not quite famous about the plethora of options that gives to users to tweaking their system. However anyone with a good will won’t face many issues.

        In this part I spend a few minutes discovering the options for customizing the behavior of Tracker, the searching and indexing tool of GNOME.

      • Snappy, a cool media player with a Clutter interface

        Snappy is a media player that gathers the power and flexibility of GStreamer inside the comfort of a Clutter interface.

        It has recently become a GNOME Project, with all the important points that that means (code, bugs, mailing lists inside the gnome project).

      • GNOME 3.8 brings polish and new Classic Mode

        With GNOME 3.8, the developers of the GNOME Project have released the latest version of their open source desktop environment for Linux and Unix systems. The release brings a number of major new features, such as the new Clocks application, enhanced search functionality, new privacy settings and a number of design changes throughout the desktop environment. The redesign of the Activities and Applications interface is supposed to make finding the right application easier and the Settings application has gained four new configuration panels.

  • Distributions

    • YUM vs. APT: Which is Best?

      Nothing stirs more debate with fellow Linux enthusiasts than their package manager.

      It’s a passionately contested issue. Which is better, YUM or APT?

      You’ll be surprised at the answers and it’s really interesting to see what people think of each.

    • What is going on for Kali Linux (Full Version)?

      Kali Linux is only a collection of pentesting tools Linux distribution. All the pentesting tools can be obtained free of charge from the internet as those are freeware or open source software.

      The development team of Kali Linux do not accept any voice from their users about their weakness of their product. For example, when telling them about the Kali Linux rebuild bugs, they always stating that they have built a lot of copies and they found no problem. Later, one of the developer fixed and it can be compiled correctly. You can refer to the following bug report for details.

    • Kali Linux ISO: Build a custom KDE image
    • Multiboot Linux distributions from one USB key
    • New Releases

      • ALT 6.9.0-20130328
      • GParted 0.15.0-3
      • Pardus 2013 Is Here!
      • Review: Pardus 2013 KDE

        Pardus is a distribution developed at least in part by the Turkish military. It used to not be based on any other distribution and used its unique PISI package management system, which featured delta upgrades (meaning that only the differences between package versions would be applied for upgrades, greatly reducing their size). Since then, though, the organization largely responsible for the development of Pardus went through some troubles. One result was the forking of Pardus into PISI Linux to further develop the original alpha release of Pardus 2013. The other result was the rebasing of Pardus on Debian, abandoning PISI in that regard. Now Pardus 2013 is a distribution based on Debian 7 “Wheezy” that uses either KDE 4.8 or GNOME 3 (whatever version is packaged in the latest version of Debian, though I’m not sure what that is).

    • Red Hat Family

    • Debian Family

      • Return to Root: How to Get Started With Debian

        Ubuntu, Mint, and other glamorous Debian derivatives get all the attention. So why not go to the source and try Debian itself?

        Debian is currently the most influential Linux distribution. It has inspired the popular derivatives Ubuntu and Knoppix, and their derivatives including Mint, Kubuntu, Dream Studio, Bodhi, Mepis, Damn Small Linux, and Mythbuntu. (See the Linux family tree on Wikipedia.) Debian is volunteer-driven, includes more packages than any other distribution, supports more hardware architectures, supports multiple kernels (Linux, FreeBSD, and GNU Hurd) and is 100% Free. It is also free of cost, and the good Debian people came up with a simple, elegant way to meet the needs of users who want to install non-Free software on their Debian systems. They put non-Free packages in separate repositories, so controlling what goes on your system is super easy.

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • MapR brings Hadoop support to Ubuntu

            MapR has announced a deal with Canonical to offer Hadoop on the Ubuntu Linux platform.

            Under the partnership agreement, the two firms will work in tandem to develop the MapR Hadoop tools for use with the latest versions of Ubuntu.

          • MapR Puts Hadoop on Ubuntu, Source Code on GitHub

            MapR and Canonical announced a partnership to put the MapR Hadoop distribution on Ubuntu. The company also put its source code on GitHub.

          • Ubuntu brings data science mainstream

            Earlier this week, Canonical and MapR teamed for an announcement that could signal a change in the way we see big data platforms.

            The pair said that the latest versions of Ubuntu would be bringing support for MapR’s Hadoop database management and development platform. Now, Ubuntu users will be able to access data from Hadoop deployments.

          • Smart Scopes Not Landing In 13.04, Will Land in 13.10

            As some of you may know the dash team has been working to get the new smart scopes functionality in the dash ready for 13.04; this functionality delivers a far more comprehensive dash experience, performing searches over 50 or more different data sources. This feature makes the dash dramatically more useful by searching a far wider range of data sources and returning more relevant results.

            The team has been working in a PPA to get the feature ready, and as we are past feature freeze, had filed a Feature Freeze Exception (FFe) to get this into 13.04. After an extensive amount of work to get the feature ready, unfortunately the dash team doesn’t consider it mature enough for 13.04 — it is nearly there, but doesn’t meet the quality needs for Ubuntu. As such the team has decided not to pursue landing in in 13.04 and to instead move it to the Ubuntu 13.10 cycle where it will be developed as soon as the archive opens. As I mentioned earlier, this feature has been developed in a PPA and has not landed in 13.04 yet, so there are no actual changes to the archive.

          • Transforming Ubuntu to Windows: Installing and Customizing Xfce
  • Devices/Embedded

Free Software/Open Source

  • Snort Founder Still Supports Open Source Security [VIDEO]

    In 1998 Martin Roesch launched the open source Snort Intrustion Prevention System (IPS). Three years later, he founded Sourcefire to lead the commercial efforts around Snort and enterprise security. Today Sourcefire continues to prosper, reporting $223.1 million in fiscal 2012 earnings.

    Where does that leave the open source Snort project after all these years?

  • Killer open source admin tools
  • Events

  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • Unreal gaming from within the browser

        Having recently introduced asm.js as a way of running C/C++ applications using a highly optimisable subset of JavaScript, Mozilla has joined Epic Games to present the technology being applied to a well-known platform at the Games Developer Conference in San Francisco. A port of the Unreal Engine 3 game engine to JavaScript allows games to be played in the browser without a Flash plug-in. The port only uses HTML5, WebGL and JavaScript technologies, and asm.js ensures that the games are almost fast enough to meet the performance levels of native implementations.

  • Databases

    • ArchLinux Decided to Move to MariaDB

      For years, MySQL has been fundamental to many server applications, especially those using the LAMP (Linux, Apache, MySQL, Perl/PHP/Python) software stack. Those days may be ending. BothFedora (Red Hat’s community Linux) and openSUSE (SUSE’s community Linux) will be switching out MySQL to MariaDB for their default database management system (DBMS) in their next releases.And finally Archlinux is following the Opensource World. :

      Bellow is Archlinux MalingList:

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

  • Project Releases

  • Licensing

    • Using Open Source Software? Put a License On It

      So it was with interest that we came across this article by Simon Phipps, well known for his activities in the open source arena and his experience with open source licenses. Basically his argument revolved around the fact that most code in GitHub does not have a specific license. Moreover, there is a movement that believes “software licenses are outdated” and encourages code forking without considering the original end-result licensing aspects. Although GitHub is singled out here, the behavior is not unique to GitHub. Sourceforge has a good number of project pages with no license listing or just a mention of an “approved OSI License” against the project. Although, in all fairness, and according to our own Global IP Signatures database, GitHub is probably the biggest source of unlicensed projects.

    • OSI Licensing – a year in review
  • Openness/Sharing

    • 3D Printing Slashes Optics Lab Costs
    • Open Access/Content

      • DOJ, MIT, JSTOR Seek Anonymity In Swartz Case
      • The Case for Open Access.

        A large proportion of academic research in the UK is taxpayer-funded. The money comes either via grants from the Research Councils, on which the government spends approximately £3 billion each year, or directly to universities from the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE), which in 2011-12 distributed £1.6 billion.

        The transformative potential of world-class research is pretty clear. In the last few years alone, UK researchers have developed the wonder material graphene and discovered the body of Richard III, among other things. Yet, in a curious and inequitable twist of fate, the results of this research have for the most part never been made available to the taxpayers who funded it. Instead, research findings are published in peer-reviewed scholarly journals run by private publishing companies. In the modern era, these largely take the form of PDFs behind pay-walls, tantalisingly close and yet inaccessible to those who aren’t willing to fork out $40 per view. Universities and libraries, meanwhile, can buy back-breakingly expensive subscriptions to this content. The net result of all this is that research findings are available only to the wealthy and to research institutions themselves, and even then only at great cost.

Leftovers

  • Science

    • Biological Computer: Stanford Researchers Discover Genetic Transistors That Turn Cells Into Computers

      Researchers at Stanford University announced this week that they’ve created genetic receptors that can act as a sort of “biological computer,” potentially revolutionizing how diseases are treated.

      In a paper published in the journal “Science” on Friday, the team described their system of genetic transistors, which can be inserted into living cells and turned on and off if certain conditions are met. The researchers hope these transistors could eventually be built into microscopic living computers. Said computers would be able to accomplish tasks like telling if a certain toxin is present inside a cell, seeing how many times a cancerous cell has divided or determining precisely how an administered drug interacts with each individual cell.

  • Health/Nutrition

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

  • Finance

    • Marx’s Revenge: How Class Struggle Is Shaping the World

      Karl Marx was supposed to be dead and buried. With the collapse of the Soviet Union and China’s Great Leap Forward into capitalism, communism faded into the quaint backdrop of James Bond movies or the deviant mantra of Kim Jong Un. The class conflict that Marx believed determined the course of history seemed to melt away in a prosperous era of free trade and free enterprise. The far-reaching power of globalization, linking the most remote corners of the planet in lucrative bonds of finance, outsourcing and “borderless” manufacturing, offered everybody from Silicon Valley tech gurus to Chinese farm girls ample opportunities to get rich. Asia in the latter decades of the 20th century witnessed perhaps the most remarkable record of poverty alleviation in human history — all thanks to the very capitalist tools of trade, entrepreneurship and foreign investment. Capitalism appeared to be fulfilling its promise — to uplift everyone to new heights of wealth and welfare.

    • Death Of The Small Eurobusiness, In A Bank Screenshot

      With banks opening on Cyprus, many entrepreneurs realized they had been wrecked overnight by their government’s dishonesty. The so-called bank bailout was in reality a death sentence for many small businesses, who saw their operating capital confiscated to save the government’s face. This move will create an inevitable uncertainty throughout the Eurozone: who will dare put their operating capital in a bank in a troubled country, when politicians keep saying everything is fine – until one day, the money is just gone?

    • ‘Grillo’ top problem for EU, says Goldman Sachs president

      The biggest problem currently facing the European Union (EU) is not the struggling economy of Cyprus but the “Grillo factor” in Italy, Jim O’Neill, president of Goldman Sachs Asset Management, told Bloomberg TV on Friday. “I don’t understand how some of the these tough guys in the north are not thinking about that issue,” said O’Neill in reference to the political ascent of the anti-establishment 5-Star Movement (M5S) led by Genoa comic Beppe Grillo, which took over 25% of the popular vote in recent general elections.

    • Bitcoin Hits $1 Billion

      Bitcoin, the world’s first open source cryptographic currency, which has been on a tear since the beginning of this year, set a new record for itself yesterday afternoon as the price listed on the largest online exchange rose past US $92. With nearly 11 million Bitcoins in circulation*, this sets the total worth of the currency just over one billion dollars.

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • Gorgeous, Strange and Intense Propaganda Posters from China in the 1950s
    • How a cyberwar was spun by shoddy journalism

      A veteran Reuters reporter related a piece of advice given by his editor: “It’s not just what you print that makes you an authoritative and trusted source for news, but what you don’t print.”

      He wasn’t talking about censorship, he was talking about what separates journalism from stenography and propaganda: sceptical scrutiny. The professionalism of the craft isn’t simply learning to write or broadcast what other people tell you. Crucially it is the ability to delve, interrogate and challenge, and checking out stories you’ve discovered through your own curiosity, or robustly testing what other people tell you is true.

  • Censorship

    • Opinion: Libel Reform, And Why It Matters To Britain

      The risk of libel reform failing is not one that any Briton should find acceptable. The damage our libel laws have caused over the decades is immeasurable, and has only increased since the advent of the internet.

      Now the vastly overdue libel measures that would bring the UK out of the 19th Century, and into at least the 20th Century, are on hold and may falter, due to the intervention of Lord Puttnam, and his inclusion of statutory regulation of the press in the bill.

      Sure, there could now be a list of examples of Libel tourism, and how stupid it makes Britain look, internationally, but instead how about a real-life libel law situation, and how it restricted and hampered an attempt to participate in government?

  • Privacy

    • The NSA Four: Blowing the Whistle on Corruption Around Boondoggle for Private Intelligence Contractors

      Timothy Shorrock, author of Spies for Hire: The Secret World of Outsourced Intelligence, wrote a major feature story for The Nation this week on the four whistleblowers from the National Security Agency—William Binney, Thomas Drake, William Binney, Edward Loomis and J. Kirk Wiebe—who Shorrock writes were “falsely accused of leaking in 2007″ and “have endured years of legal harassment for exposing the waste and fraud behind a multibillion-dollar contract for a system called Trailblazer, which was supposed to “revolutionize” the way the NSA produced signals intelligence (SIGINT) in the digital age.”

      The program was “canceled in 2006.” It is now “one of the worst failures in US intelligence history.”Not only that, the failure is now a significant coverup in recent government history, as the Justice Department prosecuted Drake for blowing the whistle on this corruption and the total amount of money spent on privatizing this intelligence collection is still secret.

      Moreover, there was this other cheaper program, ThinThread, that was not a privatization scheme. It had the ability to “analyze trillions of bits of foreign SIGINT flowing over the Internet at warp speed.” It was “small enough to be loaded onto a laptop, and included anonymization software that protected the privacy rights of US persons guaranteed in the 1978 Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA).” But, ThinThread was not made generally operational so that Trailblazer wouldn’t have to be scrapped.

      The story goes into much more detail on the ”toxic mix of bid-rigging, cronyism and fraud” of which “senior NSA officials and several of the nation’s largest intelligence contractors” were involved. Interviews with the “NSA Four” offer a glimpse at how the ”Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC), the government’s fourth-largest contractor, squandered billions of dollars on a vast data-mining scheme that never produced an iota of intelligence.” (Read the full story here.)

  • Civil Rights

    • Jailed for Facebook ‘like’: Palestinians endure Middle-East-wide ‘social media crackdown’

      In the last week, two Palestinians have been sentenced to prison terms for online libel and slander of politicians. Meanwhile, an arrest order has been issued for a popular Egyptian satirist, raising fears of a crackdown on freedom in the region.

    • Why Noam Chomsky Is the Subject of Relentless Attacks by Corporate Media and Establishment ‘Intellectuals’

      One very common tactic for enforcing political orthodoxies is to malign the character, “style” and even mental health of those who challenge them. The most extreme version of this was an old Soviet favorite: to declare political dissidents mentally ill and put them in hospitals. In the US, those who take even the tiniest steps outside of political convention are instantly decreed “crazy”, as happened to the 2002 anti-war version of Howard Dean and the current iteration of Ron Paul (in most cases, what is actually “crazy” are the political orthodoxiesthis tactic seeks to shield from challenge).

    • IT’S ILLEGAL TO BE A CHILD IN PALESTINE

      We couldn’t help ourselves: The sight of the young, newly released detainee drove us into a paroxysm of laughter. But the laughter quickly morphed into sad embarrassment. The detainee was a boy of 8, in second grade. When we met him this week, on the streets of Hebron, he was on his way to his grandfather’s home. He wore a red sweatshirt emblazoned with an image of Mickey Mouse, and he had a shy smile. His mom had sent him to take something to Grandpa. Eight-year-old Ahmed Abu Rimaileh was not the youngest of the children, schoolbags on their backs, that Israel Defense Forces soldiers took into custody early on Wednesday, last week: His friend, Abdel Rahim, who was arrested with him, is only 7, and in first grade.

    • Ahmed Errachidi: ‘We shared one thing in Guantánamo Bay – pain’

      The chef turned author on the five years he spent in Guantánamo Bay – and why his nickname is the General

  • Internet/Net Neutrality

03.29.13

Links 29/3/2013: New ZFS Release, Cypriot Banks Don’t Let People Leave

Posted in News Roundup at 8:46 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

  • an Open Source Software Enhance Collaboration?

    A multistate criminal justice group is using open source software to develop plug-and-play solutions for functions like incident reporting, searching criminal histories and single sign-on.

    The newly formed Open Justice Broker Consortium (OJBC) — dedicated to collaborating on open source, justice-related information sharing — includes Hawaii, Maine and Vermont. The group is using a shared Apache platform and toolkit to develop open source solutions for common criminal justice functions that can be quickly deployed by public safety agencies.

  • BBC releases open source toolkit for creating smart TV apps

    The BBC has released a toolkit as open source software that will allow the television industry to build apps for smart TVs.

    Developers working at the BBC built the TV Application Layer (TAL). It stemmed from the organisations drive to build the BBC iPlayer, News and Sport applications for Connected TVs on as many different devices as possible.

  • BBC details iPlayer’s open source TV Application Layer
  • With Switch Light, Big Switch Looks to Boost Open Source SDN
  • Range Networks: Burning Man’s open source cellular network touted for commercial rural use
  • Inside Palaver: Linux Speech Recognition that Taps Google’s Voice Technology

    Despite efforts to advance Linux speech recognition, there is still no reliable, fully-baked open source competitor to Dragon Systems’ proprietary Naturally Speaking. Lately, however, instead of trying to mimic Dragon’s technology, which is only available to Linux users via Wine emulation, some developers are cueing off simpler, yet in many ways more widely useful mobile natural language engines. Last week, a De Anza College student named James McClain released a public beta of an open source GNU/Linux speech recognition program called Palaver that uses Google’s voice APIs on the back end.

  • BBC makes iPlayer TV App Layer open source

    The BBC (British Broadcasting Corporation), a public service broadcasting corporation based in London, announced yesterday that it’s TV Application Layer (TAL) is being shared on open source. The purpose: to simplify the building of connected TV applications, and “to benefit the rest of the industry.”

  • Top 10 open source projects

    Open source has grown to become a major force in the IT industry and already in 2013 we’ve seen moves from the likes of Ubuntu and Mozilla to take this further into the mobile world.

    Thanks to the movement’s philosophy of openness, emphasis on collaboration, and its encouragement for end users to adapt and improve on a product, unlike the “closed” development approach taken with most commercial software.

  • Adobe Launches Blank, An Open Source Fallback Font You Can’t See

    Adobe today launched Adobe Blank, a new open-source OpenType font that, at first glance, does absolutely nothing. Indeed, the whole point of the font, as its creator Ken Lunde writes today, is to render every Unicode character as a “non-spacing and non-marking glyph.”

  • Events

  • Web Browsers

  • SaaS/Big Data

    • HP Cloud Team Invading OpenStack Summit
    • CloudStack Ups ‘Enterprise Credibility’ with Apache Top-Level Status

      It’s been less than a year since Citrix submitted CloudStack for incubation at the Apache Software Foundation (ASF), but already the open source Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) platform has been named a Top-Level Project.

      “Apache CloudStack has graduated from the Apache Incubator to become a Top-Level Project (TLP), signifying that the project’s community and products have been well-governed under the ASF’s meritocratic process and principles,” the foundation announced on Monday.

  • Databases

    • MariaDB is conquering the “desktop” distributions

      This required more time if compared to Libreoffice versus Open Office, but it seem that the critical mass of users of another piece of open source software is moving away from Oracle, I’m talking about Mysql versus MariaDB.

      Mysql is probably the most used open source database, it’s used in most of the more successful LAMP applications, such as WordPress, Drupal or Magento, after all the M of LAMP was an acronim for Mysql until today.

    • Arch Linux Replaces MySQL With MariaDB

      The latest Linux distribution outting of MySQL is Arch Linux, which has replaced the database solution with MariaDB.

      Fedora has decided to replace MySQL with MariaDB as have other Linux distributions while Arch Linux is now following suit. Many Linux distribution vendors are not satisfied with how Oracle is maintaining the open-source, community version of MySQL. With that in mind, many are turning to the MariaDB fork of the community project.

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

    • LibreOffice on every desk: A 10-step plan

      Document Foundation has good advice for companies migrating to open, interoperable document formats and open source tools

    • TAZ receives German Document Freedom Award

      As part of the annual Document Freedom Day, the Free Software Foundation Europe (FSFE) and the Foundation for a Free Information Infrastructure (FFII) have presented their Freedom Germany Award to the German newspaper die tageszeitungGerman language link (TAZ). Subscribers to the newspaper can receive its issues in a range of DRM-free, open formats. Explaining the motivation behind choosing the winner, Stephan Uhlmann of the FFII said: “we congratulate TAZ for their firm stance on the usage of Open Standards”.

    • Migrating to LibreOffice? Here’s Help

      Migrating to LibreOffice may seem like an easy task, but it can be a major undertaking for businesses and organizations. Several elements stand in the way of an easy migration and The Document Foundation has released a white paper to assist. It covers topics such as pilot programs, neutralizing resistance, identifying early adopters, and training.

    • Migration to Document Freedom Isn’t As Easy As It Seems

      In case you missed it, March 27 was Document Freedom Day, and The Document Foundation released a whitepaper in honor of the day. The whitepaper provides a 10-step migration plan on how to standardize on Open Document Format (ODF). In the report, there is detailed discussion of LibreOffice and the benefits of its support for ODF. There is just one problem with this otherwise noble effort: Document compatibility isn’t good enough between free and open office suites and proprietary office application suites.

      The 10-step plan for migrating to Libre Office includes very brusque and breezy discussion of the value of proprietary components that real offices use and share — components that make it nearly impossible in some cases to consider moving to a suite like LibreOffice. Consider this quote from the 10-step plan: “…before migrating any existing Visual Basic macros, it is better to determine if the macros are still needed, in order to discard those that are no longer useful and re-engineer the remaining ones.”

  • CMS

    • Alert: What’s Coming Up for Open Source CMS in April 2013

      Welcome to this month’s wrap up of what’s to come in open source CMS projects when we offer some highlights of what to look forward to in the open source world in April.

      It’s not comprehensive, so please feel free to let us know in the comments or drop a line to pr@cmswire.com if there’s a worthy project we’ve neglected here. Because everyone loves videos, we’ll lead off with an update on Umbraco’s relaunch of its Umbraco.tv tutorials site.

  • Education

  • Business

    • FLOSS Pays

      So, everyone with a decent business-plan gets cost-effective IT and sales from FLOSS. It’s obvious that no licensing fees and software shared cooperatively among millions of programmers reduces the cost of IT, the essential element of any business these days.

      Google uses Linux everywhere and adds it’s own code on top of that to provide wonderfully popular services and opportunities to earn revenue through advertising. There has never been software so popular so fast as Android/Linux, not even M$’s stuff. They took decades to do what Google has done in five years and Google’s stuff is growing while M$’s is stagnant. This is not a blip but a major shift in how IT and business is done.

  • Funding

  • Project Releases

  • Openness/Sharing

    • Does lyric-sharing contribute to a more open music industry?

      Recently, The Beatles made history again in January 2013, as “Love Me Do” and “P.S. I Love You” entered the public domain in Europe. As lyrics to songs and musical compositions become available to the public, do you think they contribute to a more open music industry?

    • TMI? Newest Entrepreneurs Advocate Open Source Culture
    • Open-source 3D-printable optics to slash lab costs

      An American researcher hopes to slash optics laboratory costs by releasing a library of open-source, 3D-printable components.

    • Drone Makers Get Help From the Open-Source, DIY Crowd

      The Federal Aviation Administration isn’t expected to approve unmanned aerial vehicles for commercial use until at least 2015. Even so, manufacturers are already preparing to jump into the market—relying on the open-source movement for free research and development. Amateur designers and manufacturers are building prototypes at home, then e-mailing or posting the results, often with how-tos that can be completed using part-making 3D printers.

    • Open Data

      • Opening product data for a more responsible world

        Data on the products we buy is rarely viewed as something to be opened. But in fact, the international standards that make it possible for products to be traded across borders can be used by consumers for their own ends—to help improve information—sharing and choice across the planet. There is currently no public database of this information, but we’re working to change that at Product Open Data.

  • Standards/Consortia

    • Many Features Proposed For C++14

      C++14 is the next update for the C++ programming language. While slated as only a minor extension to C++11, there are several new features being proposed.

Leftovers

  • Health/Nutrition

  • Security

  • Defence/Police/Secrecy/Aggression

    • US ex-soldier ‘fought in Syria with terror group’

      A former US soldier has been charged with using a weapon outside the US as he fought against Syrian government forces, prosecutors say.

      Eric Harroun, 30, served in the US Army from 2000-2003, and allegedly fought in Syria with the al-Nusra Front.

    • Agency of Fear

      It’s nearing dusk on November 26, 2010. More than 25,000 people have gathered in a light rain at Pioneer Square in downtown Portland, Oregon to watch the annual lighting of the holiday tree, a 100-foot-tall Douglas-fir logged from the Willamette National Forest.

      Three men in a nearby hotel room have just finished eating a take-out pizza. The TV turned to a local news channel, which is covering holiday celebration. The men spread towels on the floor and say an Islamic prayer, asking that Allah bless their operation. The men pat each other on the back, leave the room and walk to their vehicle, a white van.

    • Defense Companies Cash in on Gov’t Hyped ‘Cyber-Security’ Threat

      Amidst the daily hype over the increased threat of cyber attacks and enhanced need for internet security, private defense companies are cashing in on the new stream of defense dollars and trove of “classified” personal cyber data.

    • Shockingly Unshocking: ‘Cybersecurity’ FUD Has Been Big Big Business For Contractors
    • ‘Phoenix jihadist’s’ dad claims son worked in Syria for CIA

      As US Army veteran Eric Harroun awaits trial in Virginia for allegedly fighting alongside al-Qaeda supporters, the man’s father claims he was working for the CIA and was reporting back to the agency from Syria.

    • Alfreda Frances Bikowsky Head of CIA Darkside?

      Several recent news reports (1, 2, 3) claim the new head of CIA clandestine service is a woman, first female to head the darkside division. None publicly name her, although her identity is said to be known to journalists. She is said to be a formerly top member of the CIA bin Laden hunt team, former COS in New York City and London, an advocate of destroying CIA torture tapes as assistant to Deuce Martinez and an esteemed briefer of Presidents of the United States.

    • Retired CIA employee attempts voodoo to kill estranged wife, gets jail time

      Raymond E. Bradshaw Jr., a former CIA employee, was sentenced to four years in prison on Tuesday for soliciting his wife’s murder when voodoo didn’t do the job.

      Bradshaw first attempted to use voodoo to save his marriage, reports the Washington Post, before resorting to spells he hoped would just flat-out kill the woman. When that also failed to take her out, Bradshaw bought a gun and asked his nephew to shoot McLaughlin for a grand total of $2,500.

    • A public indictment could shed light on CIA’s secret program

      Human rights researchers years ago identified a man who may have been held secretly by the CIA, and whose whereabouts were unknown. It appears that man is now in custody in New York

    • Afghan villagers flee homes, blame U.S. drones
    • Are Drone Strikes Killing Terrorists or Creating Them?

      There’s been a lot of chatter recently about “Out of Sight, Out of Mind,” a new online infographic which shows a chilling visualization of all estimated deaths in Pakistan caused by U.S. drone strikes, including children and civilians, based on estimates from the Bureau of Investigative Journalism and New America Foundation. Whether you agree with the numbers, or the politics, behind this particular project (put together by the data visualization firm Pitch Interactive), at least it’s sparking debate. And that’s got to be a good thing — there’s still so much we don’t know about this highly controversial issue.
      To say that the use of drone strikes is a polarizing topic would be a vast understatement. In U.S. policy circles, it’s projected as an effective counter-terrorism tactic, whereas globally, it is often seen as tacit abuse of state sovereignty. And that’s before you get to the debate over potential international law and human rights violations.

    • Pakistani officials: US drone kills 3 militants

      The secret nature of the program makes it difficult to determine how many civilians are being killed.

    • Pakistani officials say US drone kills 3 militants

      Two Pakistani intelligence officials say a U.S. drone targeting a vehicle has killed three suspected militants near the Afghan border.

    • ACLU, Congress Await Obama’s Next Action on Overseas Drone Strikes
    • Seeking Daylight on U.S. Drone Policy
    • Activists Organize Nationwide Series of Drone Surveillance Protests

      A variety of activist groups are organizing a series of nationwide protests in April in an attempt to stop the integration of domestic drones into American airspace.

      The protests will occur in at least 18 states at facilities that research drone technology, drone command centers, drone manufacturing plants, universities that have drone programs and the White House, according to Nick Mottern, founder of Known Drones, a website that tracks unmanned aircraft activity in the United States and abroad.

    • Drone industry could crash into public opposition

      Unmanned drone aircraft that would be built and operated by private business for domestic use are seen as a promising industry in Colorado and elsewhere — but that promise is threatened by a potential public backlash and moves by state officials to limit their use.

    • Drone Operators: Soldiers or Civilians?

      International law does not allow combatants to kill in the morning and enjoy dinner with their children later in the evening.

    • DEPRIEST: Don’t drone me, bro

      As science fiction turns to fact, many college students are noticing the striking resemblance that the modern era has begun to bear to George Orwell’s “Nineteen Eighty-Four.” The technological world continues to evolve, presenting new challenges to some of the oldest tenets of American government, and the youngest among the American people are rising up in force to confront them. Skepticism has moved from conspiracy theorists’ basements to the walls of Facebook, the halls of universities, and recently, thanks to Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky, the floor of the Senate.

    • Why Mayor Bloomberg’s vision of a drone-filled city doesn’t fly

      Taking a break from his crusade against sugary soft drinks, NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg took some time during his weekly radio broadcast last week to downplay an issue that’s been at the forefront of privacy concerns in a growing number of US states: the use of unmanned aerial drones for ubiquitous police surveillance. “What’s the difference whether the drone is up in the air or on the building?” asked an incredulous Bloomberg, now in the final months of his heavily-lobbied third term in office. “I mean, intellectually I have trouble making that distinction.”

  • Cablegate

    • Ecuadorean government holds talks with Labour over Julian Assange embassy impasse

      The Ecuadorean government believes there is so little prospect of Wikileaks founder Julian Assange leaving its London embassy in the near future that it has held talks with the Labour Party in a bid to strike a deal that would see him sent to Sweden, where he faces rape charges, after the 2015 election.

      Officials at the London embassy want to see an end to the legal and political impasse which has seen Mr Assange holed up inside the building ever since his asylum claim in June last year.

      Yet the South Americans believe they could still be housing him for years to come, having failed so far to negotiate a resolution with the Coalition. As a result, Ecuadorean officials are hoping to persuade a future Labour government to offer assurances that Mr Assange will not be onward-extradited from Sweden to the US and thus persuade the Australian to leave.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • For NPR, Fracking Fight Is Between Farmers & Movie Stars

      So many people believe fracking–a method of releasing oil or gas from rock–to be unsafe that hundreds of U.S. communities have voted to ban it. If you’re unsure how to feel about it, NPR would like to help with that.

      The network–which receives funding from America’s Natural Gas Alliance, a pro-fracking industry group–ran a report March 20 that began by explaining that despite “all the money coming out of the ground in some places,” New York doesn’t allow fracking, which “causes landowners to feel they’re being left behind.”

    • Summer Melt Season Getting Longer On Antarctic Peninsula

      The Antarctic Peninsula — a mountainous region extending northwards towards South America — is warming much faster than the rest of Antarctica. Temperatures have risen by up to 3 oC since the 1950s — three times more than the global average. This is a result of a strengthening of local westerly winds, causing warmer air from the sea to be pushed up and over the peninsula. In contrast to much of the rest of Antarctica, summer temperatures are high enough for snow to melt.

    • Israel faces geopolitical tangle with natural gas

      The Israel-Turkey rapprochement is on the minds of Cypriot authorities as future gas revenues are seen as the country’s best hope to pull it out of the economic morass that has decimated its banking sector.

      “I assure you that we are monitoring the situation and we will act accordingly to protect the country’s sovereign rights,” Cyprus’ Commerce Minister Giorgos Lakkotrypis recently said. He said the country’s president, Nicos Anastasiades, is planning a trip to Israel to discuss energy cooperation matters.

  • Finance

    • Lanny Breuer Cashes in After Not Prosecuting Wall Street Execs, Will Receive Approximate Salary of 4 Million Dollars

      It’s official, and former Department of Justice (DOJ) Criminal Division Chef Lanny Breuer is bragging about it. He’ll return for the third to time the white collar (now expanding its clients internationally) legal defense firm of Covington & Burling, but this time at a whopping salary.

      According to the New York Times: “Mr. Breuer is expected to earn about $4 million in his first year at Covington. In addition to representing clients, he will serve as an ambassador of sorts for the firm as it seeks to grow overseas.”

    • Whistleblowing at the NSA: Daily Whistleblower News

      The NSA Four worked on and advocated for another program – ThinThread – that was inexpensive and more respectful of privacy rights, which was ultimately tossed by NSA officials.

    • NSA begins building world’s largest data collecting system
    • NSA Backs CISPA-Like Information Sharing

      The NSA wants to help stop the next cyber attack on Wall Street, Facebook, or Twitter, and the agency’s director thinks information sharing between the feds and private companies is a good place to start.
      “Right now, the ability to share real-time information is complicated and there are legal barriers. We have to overcome that,” Gen Keith B. Alexander, director of the National Security Agency and commander of U.S. Cyber Command, said during a Thursday appearance at Georgia Tech’s Cyber Security Symposium.

    • NSA Director: Information-Sharing Critical To U.S. Cybersecurity

      Information-sharing and visibility into the threat landscape are vital for the public and private sectors to defend cyberspace, National Security Agency Director Gen. Keith B. Alexander told an audience at The Georgia Tech Cyber Security Symposium yesterday.

      The key to this is crafting legislation that protects privacy while facilitating sharing between intelligence agencies, Internet Service Providers (ISPs), and critical infrastructure, explained Alexander at the two-day event at Georgia Tech University.

    • Greece arrests three young neo-Nazis over bank vandalism

      …neo-Nazi militants accused of throwing Molotov cocktails at a Bank of Cyprus subsidiary.

    • New rules allow banks to reopen in Cyprus

      Banks in Cyprus are to open for the first time in more than a week today, operating for six hours from noon, but restrictions will be in place on financial transactions to prevent people from draining their accounts.

    • BitCoin subject to US money-laundering rules

      Amid growing worries that new forms of cash bought online is used to fund illicit activities, the US says it’s applying money laundering rules to virtual currencies.

  • Privacy

  • Civil Rights

    • USA Today Covers ‘Lonely Battle’ of Equality Opponents

      Who is this rainbow coalition, described in the lead of USA Today’s March 22 front-pager? They are, it turns out, opponents of same sex marriage, and the piece is part of what looks like a wavelet of media efforts to “put a human face” on that opposition. Theirs, readers are told, is “a lonely battle”: “Outspent and lately out-hustled by highly organized gay rights organizations, opponents have struggled to get their story out.”

      That’s a curious premise, given that “their story” is the law of the land, and that’s why we’re talking about it in the first place. But the premise is never challenged, because the paper’s Richard Wolf doesn’t talk to anyone who would challenge it.

    • Maldives Rape Victim’s Flogging Sentence Touches Off Anti-Tourism Campaign

      Global outrage is growing against a Maldives court’s verdict announced on February 26, 2013 to flog a 15-year-old girl who was originally a victim of rape and sexual abuse. She now faces 100 lashes in public which will be administered when she turns 18.

      More than one million people have signed a petition created by the campaign website Avaaz.org, urging Maldivian authorities to protect the girl and end the practice of flogging of women and children for sex outside marriage. The petition also threatens to hit at the country’s tourism industry until President Mohamed Waheed acts.

    • NYPD on Trial: Police Say They Are Forced to Harass Kids in Order to Meet Quotas

      Last week, NYPD whistleblowers Adhyl Polanco and Pedro Serrano, who secretly recorded supervisors demanding that officers fill quotas, testified in federal court that they were forced to violate the law to meet numbers. “We were handcuffing kids for no reason,” Polanco testified. The two officers are testifying in a class-action suit targeting the NYPD’s stop-and-frisk policy.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality

  • DRM

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Canada Denies Patent For Drug, So US Pharma Company Demands $100 Million As Compensation For ‘Expropriation’

      An increasingly problematic aspect of free trade agreements (FTAs) is the inclusion of investor-state provisions that essentially allow companies — typically huge multinationals — to challenge the policies of signatory governments directly. The initial impulse behind these was to offer some protection against the arbitrary expropriation of foreign investments by less-than-democratic governments.

    • World Economic Forum Warns That Patents Are Making Us Lose The Race Against Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria

      Back in June last year, Techdirt reported on the warning from the World Health Organization’s Director-General that we risked entering a “post-antibiotic era”. That was in part because the current patent system was not encouraging the right kind of research by pharma companies in order to develop the new antibiotics that we desperately need.

    • Copyrights

      • The Chilling Effects of the DMCA

        The outdated copyright law doesn’t just hurt consumers—it cripples researchers.

      • Georgia State Court Issues Censorship Order Blocking Free Speech On Anti-Copyright Troll Message Board

        The EFF has a blog post about a very troubling ruling in a Georgia state court that effectively orders the censoring of an anti-copyright trolling blog including user comments. The blog in question, ExtortionLetterInfo.com, is run by a guy named Matt Chan. He recently took up the cause of people who have been hit by copyright infringement demands from Linda Ellis, a poet who is somewhat infamous for going after lots of people, demanding payments after they posted her sappy poem “the Dash.” She apparently threatens people (ridiculously) with the statutory maximum awards of $150,000 per infringement, but will “settle” for a mere $7,500 — often going after non-profits, charities and churches who want to share the “positive message” of the poem. Yes, she demands $7,500 for posting her poem to a website.

      • EU Copyright: We Need Actions, Not Consultations!

        Two years after a first consultation, the European Commission is conducting yet-another public consultation on the “Civil enforcement of intellectual property rights”, essentially on the IPRED directive1. Many aspects of this new consultation are similar to the previous one, and call for similar answers. La Quadrature du Net therefore re-sent its previous submission and denounces a process aiming at buying time to delay any debate on the urgent need to reform copyright.

03.28.13

Links 28/3/2013: Hands-on With “Firefox OS”

Posted in News Roundup at 9:02 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Early April Fools Joke By Infoworld: M$ and Lenovo in Love

    As Lenovo clearly ships a lot of GNU/Linux and Chrome OS PCs even in China and as far as I know Lenovo has never shipped unlicensed software, I think this is InfoWorld making its own news or playing an early April Fools joke. It’s probably the latter… Whether it’s just a renewal of the old agreement from 2006 to “recommend” that other OS, I don’t know, but it’s a very bad joke.

  • Linux Foundation Training Prepares the International Space Station for Linux Migration

    It’s hard to get tech support 400 kilometers away from the Earth, which is why Keith Chuvala of United Space Alliance, a NASA contractor deeply involved in Space Shuttle and International Space Station (ISS) operations, decided to migrate to Linux. As leader of the Laptops and Network Integration Teams, Chuvala oversees the developers in charge of writing and integrating software for the Station’s “OpsLAN” – a network of laptops that provide the ISS crew with vital capabilities for day-to-day operations, from telling the astronauts where they are, to inventory control of the equipment used, to interfacing with the cameras that capture photos and videos.

  • You are not safe

    Linux is the perfect platform for this kind of experimentation. The reason why the operating system is so secure, for example, is because any developer can look at the source code and work out what’s happening. The arcane and hidden data transfers that make up the World Wide Web should be no different. In this issue, we investigate some of the tools that can reveal this hidden world, as well as showing you how easy it can be for these tools to be turned against us. And just like with Linux, the solution to these weaknesses are increased transparency, awareness and education. It’s like debugging the internet!

  • Linux Format 170 On Sale Today – Hack the Web!

    The internet is full of unpleasant people who would love nothing more than to steal your passwords, crack into your WordPress site and generally make a nuisance of themselves at your expense. So we learned their black arts so that you can protect yourself against them, and in the process we discovered that protection rackets have moved online through the power of DDOS attacks.

  • Big business buys into big Linux

    That shouldn’t come as any surprise. IDG, for example, found in the last quarter of 2012 that while overall server revenue is only growing at 3.1 percent year over year, Linux experienced 12.7 percent year-over-year growth for the quarter, while Windows only increased 3.2 percent and Unix was down 24.1 percent.

  • Linux Foundation Report Shows Enterprises Warming Up to Linux

    Just this week I did a post on how much in demand Linux skills are in the job market. They are in demand, of course, because Linux is increasingly being used in enterprises–and not just at the server level. New research from The Linux Foundation in its report “Linux Adoption: Third Annual Survey of World’s Largest Enterprise Linux Users” confirms this fact.

    “We see the growing success of Linux adoption in the enterprise, especially as it’s used for the most important areas of business, leading to the rise of Linux and collaborative development across many industries,” said Amanda McPherson, vice president of marketing and developer services, The Linux Foundation, in a statement. “Having a realistic understanding of where Linux is gaining traction in the enterprise helps to inform vendors and users about how they can work together to advance Linux and the technologies it supports.”

  • Linux Adoption Continues to Grow

    Linux adoption for mission-critical deployments and the cloud continues to grow in 2013. That’s the top-line finding from a new Enterprise End User Report from the Linux Foundation.

  • Desktop

  • Server

    • DreamWorks Animation The Croods Tops 9,100 Linux Render-Years

      The Croods, which took #1 in the box office this weekend with an estimated $44.7 million, used a powerful Linux render farm to create the film

    • Shotwell developers aim to solve Linux’s e-mail problems

      The developers behind the Shotwell photo manager for Linux-based operating systems are setting their sights on a weak spot of the Linux desktop: e-mail.

      Yorba, the creator of Shotwell, has turned to crowdfunding site Indiegogo in an attempt to raise $100,000 toward the e-mail client, named “Geary.” After two days, Yorba has raised about $8,000.

    • Is a New Approach to Email Just What Linux Needs?

      This week, some surprisingly positive data arrived about Linux’s growing volume of welcome in enterprises. But if you ask many people why Linux isn’t more entrenched at enterprises, they might cite compatibility issues with widely used platforms such as Microsoft Office, support concerns, and more. One longstanding concern about Linux in the enterprise has surrounded the fact that email has never been really enterprise-grade on Linux platforms.

      As a matter of fact, some of the more promising efforts to pull off smart open source email have been left in the gutter. Mozilla, for example, has pulled way back on its efforts with Thunderbird. That’s why it’s interesting to note that some of the respected developers behind the Shotwell photo manager application are working on an email idea called Geary.

      We’ve covered Shotwell many times and it is very popular with Linux users. The developers behind it are talented.

  • Audiocasts/Shows

  • Kernel Space

    • Kernel Log: Coming in 3.9 (part 1)

      The Linux kernel can now be set up to use SSDs as cache for hard drives; Btrfs has native RAID 5 and 6 support. The kernel development team has also resolved two performance problems caused by previous changes.

      On Sunday, Linus Torvalds released the fourth pre-release version of Linux kernel 3.9. In his release notes, he noted that development has not yet settled down and called for testing of the RC.

    • Linux Foundation Becomes Sponsor
  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments/WMs

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

      • KDE developers working on a new network manager based on QML

        KDE developers are working on a brand new network manager for this most advanced ‘desktop environment’. One of the reasons behind this new network manager, as the developer Jan Grulich explains is “Because the source code of the old one is complicated and it’s not simple to fix or add something, so we decided to start writing the new one from scratch.”

    • GNOME Desktop/GTK

      • Top 10 New Features in GNOME 3.8

        The latest iteration of the popular GNOME desktop, version 3.8, sees release today – but what are notable changes and improvements should you be looking out for?

        Here’s a list of our 10 favourite changes – in no specific order – new to this release.

      • GNOME 3.8 Released – See What’s New [Video, Screenshots]

        GNOME 3.8 has been released today, the new version bringing many new features and enhancements, including a new application view and overhauled window layout for GNOME Shell, new setting panels for privacy, search and notifications and of course, many updates to the core GNOME apps like Web (Epiphany), Boxes, Documents and more.

  • Distributions

    • New Releases

      • New features in Cairo-Dock 3.2

        The developers of the popular panel launcher application Cairo-Dock have updated it to version 3.2. Following around six months of work, the new version offers improved multi-display support and includes a new application for producing screenshots which should eventually be able to replace gnome-screenshot. The new Sound-Effects plugin adds sounds to some dock actions. Remote folders (such as through Samba or FTP) and encrypted drives can now be managed via the Shortcuts applet.

      • Cairo-Dock 3.2 release!
    • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandrake/Mandriva Family

    • Arch Family

    • Red Hat Family

      • Red Hat reports record $1.3 billion in revenues

        The leading open source company Red Hat has once again reported the impressive revenues of US$ 1.3 billion for the fiscal year 2013. It was 17% up year-over-year. The company reported fourth quarter subscription revenue revenue of $348 million.

        Jim Whitehurst, President and Chief Executive Officer of Red Hat said, “We continued to see momentum with large deals in Q4, closing a record number of deals in excess of $5 million and $10 million. We now provide solutions to over 90o/o of Fortune 500 companies as well as tens of thousands of smaller companies. New customer additions coupled with renewing and up-selling our existing customer base enabled us to exceed the billion dollar milestone in both subscription revenue and deferred revenues for the first time.”

      • Red Hat, Inc. (RHT), Oracle Corporation (ORCL), and the Evolution of OpenStack
      • Red Hat’s Q4: Misses revenue but wins on earnings

        Shares drop in after hours trading as the open source software provider squeaked out solid earnings but missed the revenue target.

    • Debian Family

      • The Future of Debian

        Interesting insights into the future of Debian can be seen in interviews with candidates for Debian Project Leader in Debian’s new official blog.

        The candidates are distinguishing themselves with new ideas to expose the glory of Debian GNU/Linux to the world or to improve operations or to involve a wider community in the production, testing, distribution and promotion of Free Software. It seems to me that no matter who wins the most support, Debian is ready to take a bigger role at the centre of the FLOSS world.

      • SparkyLinux 2.1 “GameOver” is out

        Brand new, two egged SparkyLinux 2.1 ‘GameOver’ is out.
        It’s the second, special edition of SparkyLinux ‘GameOver” released for Easter 2013.

        It has been directly built on SparkyLinux 2.1 ‘Eris’ and Debian testing ‘Wheezy’.
        All packages have been synchronized with Debian testing repos of 24/03/2013.

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • MapR, Canonical bring Hadoop to Ubuntu

            MapR, a “Big 3″ Hadoop provider, is partnering with Canonical to make Hadoop an even bigger phenomenon than it is already. Specifically, the companies are making an Ubuntu-integrated MapR M3 distribution available for download.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • First Yocto compatible Carrier Grade Linux

      Wind River announced today that it has registered the Wind River Linux Carrier Grade (CG) profile for compliance with the Linux Foundation’s Carrier Grade Linux (CGL) v5.0 requirements. Accordingly, the company claims Wind River Linux to be the first Yocto Compatible CGL-registered Linux distribution.

    • Power-stingy SODIMM-style module runs ARM Linux
    • Leap Motion Controller now Linux compatible
    • Yocto compatible carrier grade Linux from Wind River

      Wind River has introduced the Wind River Linux Carrier Grade (CG) Profile for the latest version of Wind River Linux. Formally registered for the CGL 5.0 specification with the Linux Foundation, the profile is the first delivery of Carrier Grade Linux functionalities on top of a Yocto Project Compatibleproduct, says Wind River.

    • Phones

      • Small Cheap Computers Never Looked So Good

        Oh my. 8 cores in an ARMed CPU/SoC, 4 at 1.2-1.8gHz and 4 at 1.2gHz with 2gB RAM… 28nm allows all that computing power to sip juice from the battery. It’s certainly competitive with legacy PCs of just a few years ago and it can fit in a pocket or tablet. Linux makes all this run. Android makes it fit on tiny screens with fingers and do amazing things with hundreds of thousands of “apps” and Samsung tweaks that a bit to make it even more useful. Quit drooling on your keyboard!

      • Automotive infotainment gains TIZEN rich-media support

        PathPartner Technology has joined the GENIVI Alliance with an eye toward marketing its embedded multimedia software and design services to developers of next-generation automotive in-vehicle infotainment (IVI) devices.

      • Ballnux

      • Android

        • Amazon smartphone reported to feature 4.7-inch display

          The rumored Amazon smartphone will feature a 4.7-inch display, according to a new DigitTimes report. Yeah – we know that the source is not always that accurate, but whatever…we’re passing along.

        • Amazon Kindle Fire tablets get X-Ray for TV

          Amazon today announced that its popular and rather cool X-Ray service has expanded into the realm of television. Ever find yourself watching a TV show and wondering, “Where have I seen that guy before”? This is the sort of app and feature that answers those questions.

          Tied to IMDb, the X-Ray service runs on Kindle and Wii U devices and enables Amazon Instant Video viewers to quickly ID actors and learn more about them. Sorry guys, it won’t work on your standard phone or tablet; you must purchase and watch through Amazon’s Instant Videos.

        • An introduction to using Android as an embedded OS

          An extensive slide presentation on using Android in embedded systems is available for free download on the website of Free Electronics. The presentation provides an efficient technical introduction and overview of the process of developing embedded Android software, on both the OS and application levels.

    • Sub-notebooks/Tablets

Free Software/Open Source

  • OpenKM Teams with Standing Cloud to Bring Open Source Web-based Document Management to the Cloud

    OpenKM, a leading developer of open source, web-based enterprise document management solutions, today announced the launch of OpenKM Cloud, a new cloud-based offering that makes deploying and managing OpenKM fast, simple and affordable in the cloud.

  • 75 Open Source Apps To Replace Popular Security Software

    Hackers seem to be successfully attacking almost everyone these days. Already this year, the news has included high-profile cyberattacks targeting Facebook, Microsoft, Apple, Chase, Evernote, The Federal Reserve, Twitter, The Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg, Reuters, The New York Times and other companies.

    While no security software can provide complete protection from every cyberattack, the open source community has developed a variety of tools that home users, small businesses and enterprises can use to improve their security profile. Many of these open source projects are of a very high quality—in fact, many have won awards and some have been incorporated into commercial applications.

  • Big Switch Shines a Switch Light on Open Source OpenFlow Switching

    At the core of the Software Defined Networking (SDN) revolution is the OpenFlow protocol. Enabling OpenFlow on physical switches is something that multiple vendors have been working toward. Enabling OpenFlow on virtual switches is now Switch Lightsomething that Big Switch, a startup led by the creators of OpenFlow, is now pushing forward.

  • Interview with Emil Ivov about Jitsi, a VoIP softphone supporting IPv6 and DNSSEC
  • Thinking about Code Review in Free Software

    Code review can be a bit of a recipe for drama. There was a large-ish amount of drama in a close project quite recently that stemmed from patch review, and it got me thinking about how we handle this in free software.

    In free software code review, along with other practices that we call “agile practices” (such as continuous integration, unit testing, behavior driven design, test driven development) is a relatively new thing in some projects, especially those on the desktop stack.

  • Events

    • Openmobility 2013 to spotlight growing DIY, Maker trends
    • Luminaries to Tackle the Tech Skills Crisis on International Flight

      Can a group of 100 certified tech innovators, including Silicon Valley CEOs, venture capitalists and analysts, sit down together for a few hours and solve the world’s crisis in tech skills? That’s the question that a British Airways program called UnGrounded is asking, and the way the program intends to get an answer is quite swashbuckling. Through Ungrounded, 100 tech luminaries will board a flight on June 12 in San Francisco, headed for London, where they will tackle the tech skills problem in a challenge sponsored by Ideo, a technology design firm.

  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • Ad industry threatens Firefox users with more ads if Mozilla moves on tracking plans

        The online ad industry has attacked Mozilla over its decision to block third-party cookies in a future release of Firefox, calling the move “dangerous and highly disturbing,” and claiming that it will result in more ads shown to users.

      • Firefox getting smarter about third-party cookies

        https://blog.mozilla.org/privacy/2013/02/25/firefox-getting-smarter-about-third-party-cookies/

      • Hands-on with Mozilla’s Web-based “Firefox OS” for smartphones

        Launching a new mobile OS is a difficult project since the market leaders, Android and iOS, have such a big lead. Even Microsoft, with its near-infinite financial resources and vast ecosystem of complementary products, has struggled to gain traction. And new entrants face a chicken-and-egg problem: developers don’t want to write apps for a platform without many users, while users don’t want to buy a phone without many apps.

      • Firefox and Ubuntu go Mobile

        A major announcement this year at Mobile World Congress was the Firefox Operating System (OS), built by Mozilla, the same company that brought you the world’s leading browser until Google claimed the throne with its web browser, Chrome.

        Firefox OS runs on HTML 5 through the Firefox browser’s engine, which handles demands more efficiently in weaker phones. It features the typical grid of apps set on top of a four app bar at the bottom.

      • Hands-on with Mozilla’s Web-based “Firefox OS” for smartphones

        The default mapping app bundled with the Geeksphone is HERE Maps, which was developed by Nokia. The application has improved steadily since we started using it. It’s gone from unusable to functional but bare-bones.

      • Mozilla Open Source Effort Accelerates Browsers for Gaming and More

        Gaming is among the most resource-consuming and complex of all computing tasks. Historically gaming has been the realm of native code running on bare metal operating systems, but thanks to a new effort from Mozilla, real gaming via a web browser is now a reality.

  • SaaS/Big Data

    • OpenStack Open Source Cloud Project Setup Set for a Shakeup?
    • What is Open Source Cloud?

      For all the talk about cloud, it might come as a surprise to many in the industry that “cloud” is not a well-understood term. It’s often perceived as “just a buzzword” or something without a lot of substance. While the term can be abused, it’s actually an important concept and it’s certainly not just a passing fad.

      In talking to people following the Apache CloudStack graduation, and meeting with the local Linux User Group (LUG), it dawned on me that cloud still bears some explanation. Let’s take a look the standard definition, some types of clouds, and why it matters.

  • Databases

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

  • Funding

    • The ‘Love Linux’ Campaign: The TuxDrive & The TuxPoster
    • First Ouya Consoles Shipping to Backers

      The early bird gets the worm, or in this case, the new portable home gaming system. Ouya’s $99 Android-based console is now shipping to early backers, and is expected to hit shelves this summer for all consumers.
      Ouya games include action, sports, arcade, and indie, played directly on your TV. Big-name publishers like Square Enix and Namco Bandai have already signed on with the company, which also snagged independent developers like Tripwire Interactive and Adam Saltsman.
      The Ouya may seem like the underdog in the established console market, but the little machine is aiming to disrupt the entire home gaming platform.

    • Mini Android PC hitches a ride on a Kickstarter rocket
  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

    • Document Freedom Day 2013 celebrated in 30 countries

      The Free Software Foundation Europe (FSFE) is running its annual Document Freedom Day campaign today to raise awareness of the importance of open standards. This year’s Document Freedom Day involves over 50 groups from 30 countries and focuses on open standards in web-based streaming technologies, especially on increasing the awareness and usage of HTML5. This year’s campaign is sponsored by Google and openSUSE.

    • Document Freedom Day from Brussels to Taiwan: Open Standards celebrated in 30 countries

      In 30 countries around the world, activists are celebrating Open Standards on today’s Document Freedom Day, an annual campaign to promote Open Standards. More than 50 groups are hosting events around the world, from Brussels to Nicaragua to Nepal.

      Open Standards are crucial to ensure that different computer systems can work together, and that users can access documents regardless of the computing platform or device they use. They are the foundation of the Internet and the World Wide Web.

  • Project Releases

  • Public Services/Government

    • Antiword: Read MS Word Documents in Your Terminal [Linux]
    • Open source and Latvian Geospatial Information Agency intertwined

      At the Latvian Geospatial Information Agency in Riga, all parts of the organisations use open source. Linux, to begin with, provides a stable operating system for its databases, both proprietary and the open source alternative Postgresql. Naturally the agency uses all kinds of open source solutions for its Geographic Information Systems, including Postgis and Quantum Gis.

    • Winning a presidential election the open source way

      One of the ways Obama won the 2012 election was with technology. It wasn’t the only way, but technology offered one thing that feet on the street couldn’t: a force multiplier effect. The technology used during the campaign to accept donations and manage volunteers was based on open source and open standards. Open source helped the campaign accomplish several things. It enabled the team building the technology to create a culture of code, innovate faster, and solve problems the open source way.

  • Openness/Sharing

  • Programming

    • Eclipse Community Awards winners announced

      On the opening day of EclipseCon 2013, the Eclipse Foundation handed out the annual awards to the top individuals, projects and technologies in the Eclipse ecosystem. The individual and project awards were selected in an online vote of peers, while a judging panel selected the winners of the technology awards.

    • Perl: Jewel in the Rough or Scourge of IT?

      Perhaps it’s the rapid pace of change here in the tech world, but it seems scarcely a day can go by without someone declaring some technology or another “dead.”

      Take the netbook, for example. People have been saying for years it’s dead; today, however, we have the Chromebook phenomenon.

      The command line is another popular target, of course, but few can compete with the Linux desktop itself, the death of which has been trumpeted so many times now that Linux Girl has lost count. Amazing how something that’s “dead” can keep on satisfying so many users!

      Well, recently in the Linux community there’s been occasion to discuss another purported “death” — or at least one that’s often wished for. The “victim” this time? None other than Perl.

  • Standards/Consortia

Leftovers

  • “For Lawyers, Joining the Supreme Court Bar is a Vanity Trip”

    The Associated Press has this story on what it means for lawyers to join the U.S. Supreme Court bar. As the article suggests, being a member of the Supreme Court bar doesn’t mean much. Pretty much any lawyer who pays the $200 is admitted, at least if they have been in good standing in a state bar for three years and get two other bar members to sign on.

  • Security

    • Rather Than Fix The CFAA, House Judiciary Committee Planning To Make It Worse… Way Worse

      So, you know all that talk about things like Aaron’s Law and how Congress needs to fix the CFAA? Apparently, the House Judiciary Committee has decided to raise a giant middle finger to folks who are concerned about abuses of the CFAA. Over the weekend, they began circulating a “draft” of a “cyber-security” bill that is so bad that it almost feels like the Judiciary Committee is doing it on purpose as a dig at online activists who have fought back against things like SOPA, CISPA and the CFAA. Rather than fix the CFAA, it expands it. Rather than rein in the worst parts of the bill, it makes them worse. And, from what we’ve heard, the goal is to try to push this through quickly, with a big effort underway for a “cyberweek” in the middle of April that will force through a bunch of related bills. You can see the draft of the bill here (or embedded below. Let’s go through some of the pieces.

    • Aaron Swartz case an issue in Mass. Senate race

      The federal prosecution and suicide of Aaron Swartz has galvanized Internet activists and prompted attacks by hackers. Now it’s dividing candidates in Massachusetts’ special U.S. Senate campaign.
      Among the toughest critics of the case against Swartz is Republican Senate candidate Daniel Winslow, a Norfolk state representative and former judge. Winslow said the case shows the dangers of allowing prosecutors unchecked authority.

    • Draft House Judiciary cybersecurity bill would stiffen anti-hacking law

      A draft cybersecurity bill circulating among House Judiciary Committee members would stiffen a computer hacking law used to bring charges against Internet activist Aaron Swartz.

      The bill draft would tighten penalties for cyber crimes and establish a standard for when companies would have to notify consumers that their personal data has been hacked, according to a copy obtained by The Hill.

    • Three Things You May Not Get About the Aaron Swartz Case
    • Anti-spam group at epicenter of one of worst cyberassaults in history
    • Massive cyberattack hits Internet users
  • Defence/Police/Secrecy/Aggression

  • Cablegate

    • Could WikiLeaks, Not Spamhaus, Be the Target of Cyber Attacks?

      According to reports, there’s a beef between anti-spam operation Spamhaus and Cyberbunker, a Dutch Web host. Spamhaus claims Cyberbunker unleashed a barrage of spambots that is pounding the Internet at an alleged 300GB/s, apparently at enough choke points to slow everything down.

      [...]

      Assange’s various stinks with large government organizations, including the United States, changes the story drastically if you ask me.

      Three links sit at the bottom of the page: City Hall Fights Back, Spamhaus Blackmail War, and Swat Team Raids Bunker. All are worth reading—if you have the time to wait for the pages to load. It’s as if Cyberbunker was the one suffering from a denial of service attack.

    • Top Swedish prosecutor leaves Assange case

      The top Swedish prosecutor pursuing sexual assault charges against Julian Assange has abruptly left the case and one of Mr Assange’s accusers has sacked her lawyer.

      The turmoil in the Swedish Prosecution Authority’s effort to extradite Mr Assange comes as another leading Swedish judge prepares to deliver an unprecedented public lecture in Australia next week on the WikiLeaks publisher’s case.

    • Assange legal shakeup: Prosecutor walks, Supreme Court judge to speak out on case
    • Assange sex crimes accuser fires her lawyer

      Australian media reported on Thursday that the woman was not happy with how her lawyer Claes Borgström had handled the case when speaking with the media.

      While her application to a Swedish court to change lawyer is not available to the public, Borgström addressed the report in a statement.

      “It has been impossible to avoid contact with the media in this case. When I have been in contact with the media it has been with the approval of my client, sometimes she has asked me to do so,” he wrote.

      Borgström, Sweden’s former equality ombudsman (Jämställdhetsombudsmannen), is no stranger to taking on controversial cases.

      His former client has reportedly asked that lawyer Elisabeth Massi Fritz take over.

    • Top state prosecutor dropped from Assange case as accuser sacks lawyer

      Marianne Nye, a high-profile Swedish prosecutor, has left the case unexpectedly and been replaced by a less seasoned collaegue, Ingred Isgren. The reasons for the departure have not been disclosed.

    • The War Against Bradley Manning — A War Against All Who Speak Out Against Injustice

      Time and again, throughout America’s history, individuals with a passion for truth and a commitment to justice have opted to defy the unjust laws and practices of the American government in order to speak up against slavery, segregation, discrimination, and war. Even when their personal safety and freedom were on the line, these individuals spoke up, knowing they would be chastised, ridiculed, arrested, branded traitors and even killed.

  • Finance

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • How ‘Unlikely’ Is Mark Sanford’s Comeback Really?

      A South Carolina Republican primary for an open congressional seat leaves former South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford the favorite to win an April 2 GOP runoff.

      Sanford’s return to politics, after an extramarital affair and elaborate lies to cover it up, has prompted discussion about how unlikely such a comeback is for a staunch Republican in a party steeped in so-called “family values.”

  • Censorship

    • Twitter sued £32m for refusing to reveal anti-semites

      The case revolves around a hashtag — #unbonjuif (“a good Jew”) — which became the third-most popular on the site in October 2012. The UEJF took Twitter to court, demanding that those who had tweeted anti-semitic remarks using the hashtag be named by Twitter so the police could prosecute them for hate speech.

    • Washington Post Agreed To Withhold Acting Clandestine Service Chief’s Name At CIA’s Request

      The Washington Post revealed Wednesday in a front-page story that a woman currently running the clandestine service had signed off on a controversial 2005 decision “to destroy videotapes of prisoners being subjected to treatment critics have called torture.”

      The woman, the first to hold the position in the agency’s history, replaced John Bennett last month on an acting basis. Bennett’s name wasn’t kept secret when he was promoted to chief in July 2010. But the Washington Post didn’t identify the woman, noting that the high-ranking official “remains undercover and cannot be named.”

    • German court stirs racial tensions in neo-Nazi murder trial
    • Turkish Media Exclusion in Neo-Nazi Trial a ‘Global Embarrassment’

      A scandal is brewing in Germany over the refusal of a Munich court to provide the Turkish media with reserved seats at an upcoming neo-Nazi murder trial. German editorialists claim bureaucracy is getting in the way of needed transparency and could damage the country’s image.

    • Neo-Nazi trial harms Germany’s image in Turkey

      Criticism is growing in Turkey that Turkish media have not been admitted to the forthcoming trial of the NSU terror group, eight of whose victims were Turks. Experts are warning of damage to Germany’s image.

  • Privacy

    • Debate Continues Over Whether FBI Should Monitor Cloud Conversations

      It could be that Stallman has a point. There are widespread reports this week, after a public address from FBI officials, that the FBI has made Gmail surveillance a top priority for this year. Surveillance efforts like these could start extending to Google Voice, Dropbox and other applications as well.

    • Google’s Google problem

      GOOGLE is killing Google Reader. That may not matter much to many of you; use of Google Reader [a tool, by the way, for reading online content via RSS] was concentrated among a small group of relatively intense users. As it happens, that small group includes quite a lot of people who write for or as part of their living (it’s the second tab I open most days, after Gmail). And so Google Reader has been mourned over, angrily at times, a bit more than the many other Google services that have come and gone with little ado.

    • Google never forgets: Seventh Circuit finds no right to force search engines to block access to embarrassing public records
    • The Story of the ‘NSA Four’; Whistleblower Tour Rolls Through Indiana: Daily Whistleblower News

      This article details the story of the ‘NSA Four’ – including GAP clients Tom Drake, J. Kirk Wiebe and William Binney – featuring insight from their attorney, GAP National Security & Human Rights Director Jesselyn Radack. The four tried to expose multi-billion dollar waste and fraud – involving a highly unethical, invasive and illegal information surveillance system called Trailblazer – while at the NSA. Over the course of the next decade, they endured intense legal harassment as the NSA attempted to cover its tracks and save itself from the embarrassing exposure for closing down a separate program – this one legal, ethical, and inexpensive – that could have potentially prevented the terrorist attacks on 9/11.

    • CISPA Author Rogers

      When it was originally introduced in November 2011, CISPA would have allowed companies to pass information to the National Security Agency. The bill was reintroduced this February. According to the Electronic Frontier Foundation, which strongly opposes the bill, CISPA would have allowed companies to “hand ‘cyber threat information’ to any government agency with or without limitations on what agency can receive the information.”

    • Internal NSA magazine ‘Cryptolog’ gets limited declassification
    • Can You Crack The NSA’s Top-Secret Crossword Puzzles?
    • The social media shaped hole in surveillance law

      Over the last decade there has been an increasing change in the nature of surveillance – particularly the ability to search online, through social networks and through semi-public sources of information, reinforcing the need for the law to be reformed to protect the public from unwarranted surveillance.

      What needs to be made very clear is that just because information is on the internet, it does not necessarily follow that the police should collect and analyse it. It is essential that it the gathering of information is proportionate, necessary, balanced against the need of police to do their job, allows for a free and open internet and meets the public’s expectations of privacy.

    • FBI Pursuing Real-Time Gmail Spying Powers as “Top Priority” for 2013

      Despite the pervasiveness of law enforcement surveillance of digital communication, the FBI still has a difficult time monitoring Gmail, Google Voice, and Dropbox in real time. But that may change soon, because the bureau says it has made gaining more powers to wiretap all forms of Internet conversation and cloud storage a “top priority” this year.

      Last week, during a talk for the American Bar Association in Washington, D.C., FBI general counsel Andrew Weissmann discussed some of the pressing surveillance and national security issues facing the bureau. He gave a few updates on the FBI’s efforts to address what it calls the “going dark” problem—how the rise in popularity of email and social networks has stifled its ability to monitor communications as they are being transmitted. It’s no secret that under the Electronic Communications Privacy Act, the feds can easily obtain archive copies of emails. When it comes to spying on emails or Gchat in real time, however, it’s a different story.

  • Civil Rights

    • AUMF Hunger Strike Called to Demand Repeal of 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force PL 107-40

      …military force to detain and hold indefinitely without charge or trial American citizens on American soil

    • Larry Grathwohl: An Extraordinary Life from the Weather Underground to the FBI and beyond

      Regarding what portions of my book are as significant today as they were in the past I would suggest the readers of “:Bringing Down America” arrive at their own conclusions. As for myself, I see the objectives and goals of the weatherman to be the same today as they were 30 years ago and the only difference is the use of politics versus violence.

    • The Natural Selection of American Citizens

      These are the same people who are clueless to the existence of various legislation such as the NDAA, the military commissions act of 2006, and the Patriot Act, among others, that legalize the indefinite detention of terror suspects, that eliminate habeas corpus and give the prosecutor the power to incarcerate someone AFTER acquittal, as some examples. They think that applies only to terrorists (are you too, or will you be, a terror suspect?). They also don’t know or care about the executive orders Bush, Obama, and other presidents have signed, designed, in one way or another, to implement martial law in Amerika if Americans resist the tyranny.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • ‘Monsanto Protection Act’ Sneaks Through Senate

      When the Senate passed a budget resolution Wednesday that appears to prevent some of the potential damage from sequestration, the Continuing Resolution included several food- and agriculture-related earmarks.
      But one inclusion in particular is especially controversial. The “biotech rider” would require the USDA to approve the harvest and sale of crops from genetically modified seed even if a court has ruled the environmental studies on the crop were inadequate. This aspect of the bill infuriated many sustainable food and agriculture groups, who nicknamed the bill the “Monsanto Protection Act.”

    • Copyrights

      • Writing Open Source Software? Make Sure You Know Your Copyright Rights
      • Lawsuit claiming MMS services are like Napster finally fails

        Luvdarts LLC created a kind of MMS advertising that was designed to be forwarded to friends’ cell phones, a sort of digital “greeting card” that often included discounts. But the company only wanted its ads forwarded exactly one time—and Luvdarts really meant it. When the cards were forwarded more than once, that was copyright infringement in the company’s view. In 2010, it filed a lawsuit saying that cell phone companies should actually take responsibility for their users’ alleged infringement. Today, that lawsuit finally fell apart at an appeals court.

      • Prenda lawyer has a history of unusual class action clients

        Paul Hansmeier, widely regarded as a ringleader for the prolific copyright trolling firm Prenda Law, has been having a rough year. After a Minnesota man accused his firm of identity theft, Hansmeier gave remarkably evasive answers to questions posed by defense attorneys. Upon reading the transcript, a judge declared that “someone has a lot to hide.” The judge has since ordered Hansmeier and his Prenda colleagues to his courtroom on April 2. Prenda has begun to backpedal, dismissing pending copyright cases around the country.

      • Government Can Keep Key Emails With Hollywood Lobbyists About ‘Six Strikes’ Secret

        While we keep hearing folks in the entertainment industry and their supporters in DC talk about how great it is that the “six strikes” “Copyright Alert System” (CAS) was a “voluntary” agreement between industry players, one of the worst kept secrets in the world was that the White House was heavily involved. They basically helped Hollywood out and at least hinted strongly at the fact that if no “voluntary” agreement came through, legislation might have to be put in place (creating a novel definition of “voluntary”). Specifically, it came out that Victoria Espinel, the White House’s IP Enforcement Coordinator (IPEC), had been emailing with people about the program.

      • Copyright Lobby: The Public Has ‘No Place In Policy Discussions’

        “To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts.” That is the purpose of Article 1, Section 8, Clause 8 of the Constitution, which is sometimes referred to as the “copyright clause” (or “the patent clause”), which enables both areas of law to be created via Congress. It’s also the part that is most often ignored. As we’ve discussed, the whole purpose of this clause is to make it clear that the public are the sole stakeholders when it comes to proper policy making decisions regarding these laws. However, with this new push for comprehensive copyright reform, it appears that the copyright lobby is already working on ways to make sure that the public is marginalized in the discussion.

03.27.13

Links 27/3/2013: Document Freedom Day!

Posted in News Roundup at 10:45 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

Leftovers

  • Prime Minister Stephen Harper faces revolt as Conservative backbenchers complain of muzzlings

    Conservative MP Mark Warawa (pictured) asked the Speaker of the House to intervene Tuesday after party whip Gordon O’Connor struck him from the list of backbenchers who were scheduled to deliver a member’s statement last Thursday.

  • Google pressured Sweden to drop the word ungoogleable [Updated]
  • Security

    • Can the Lords salvage something from the Justice and Security Bill?

      Today Andrew Tyrie MP and Anthony Peto QC have published their follow-up paper on the Justice and Security Bill for the Centre for Policy Studies. It makes for harrowing reading.

      The Bill now heads back to the Lords today, where it started. The House of Lords voted for major amendments, introducing more discretion for judges and making the use of CMPs a last resort. The Government removed most of these amendments during Committee stage, in most cases by a single vote, despite repeated warnings that the Bill’s proposals constitute a radical departure from fundamental constitutional principles.

      As Andrew Tyrie MP says: “The Lords did good repair work on the Bill, but the Government has undone much of it. The Lords now have a final chance to restore their original sensible amendments and further improve the Bill. I very much hope that they will do take it.”

    • What is the Network Control Point for Security? [VIDEO]

      Martin Roesch, founder of IPS vendor SourceFIRE, discusses the need for network visibility, web application firewalls and what it should all be called.

  • Defence/Police/Secrecy/Aggression

    • The Media Didn’t Fail on Iraq; Iraq Just Showed We Have a Failed Media

      You know what, Paul Farhi? Skeptics are aware that it was possible to “connect the dots,” because they did so, in real time–citing the same exceptional journalists whom you now cite to prove that the media as a whole were doing their job.

      But the real job of the media is not to sprinkle 1 percent truth amidst 99 percent bullshit, so that diligent researchers can search it out like Easter eggs. The job of the media is to present information so that when when its audience consumes it in the usual manner, that audience can get some sense of what reality is like. By this basic standard, the corporate media failed.

    • Long-lost Nazi submarine U-486 found off coast of Norway

      The wreck of a long-lost Nazi submarine, the U-486, has been found off the west coast of Norway, more than 60 years after it was sunk.

      The remains were first spotted north of the port of Bergen last year but have only now been confirmed as the missing U-boat, the Bergen Maritime Museum announced today.

      The U-486 last sailed on April 12, 1945, when she came under attack from a British submarine. A torpedo broke the German vessel in two, sending her and all 48 crew onboard to the bottom of the seabed.

    • THE SPY WHO SAID TOO MUCH

      In 2007, John Kiriakou was settling into a lucrative life as a former spy. His fourteen-year career as a C.I.A. officer had included thrilling, if occasionally hazardous, tours as a specialist in counterterrorism. In Athens, in 1999 and 2000, he recruited several foreign agents to spy for the United States, and at one point was nearly assassinated by leftists. In Pakistan, in 2002, he chased Al Qaeda members, and when Abu Zubaydah, an Al Qaeda logistics leader, was wounded and captured, Kiriakou guarded his bedside. (Kiriakou recounted many of his exploits in a colorful memoir, “The Reluctant Spy: My Secret Life in the C.I.A.’s War on Terror.”) In 2004, he retired, and soon took a job with the accounting and consulting firm DeLoitte. He worked in the field of corporate intelligence and advised Hollywood filmmakers on the side.

    • CIA Chief advises you to ask: What are your rights? Who owns your data?

      The cloud is old news, it’s “so three years ago,” and Big Data “was so last year,” but according to the CIA’s Chief Technology Officer, Ira “Gus” Hunt, this year is about “how to get value” from Big Data. At the GigaOM Structure Data conference, Hunt presented, “The CIA’s ‘Grand Challenges” with Big Data” and I highly recommend that you take about 30 minutes to personally listen to it.

    • DOD Urged to Cut Ties with Russian Enabler of Syrian Atrocities

      Human Rights First today joined with Representatives Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) and Kay Granger (R-TX) to call on the Department of Defense to uphold its legal responsibility to end its business relationship with Russian-state arms exporter Rosoboronexport, an enabler of the mass atrocities in Syria. Russia, through Rosoboronexport, has served as the chief arms supplier of weapons to the Bashar al-Assad regime since the beginning of the two-year Syrian conflict that has left more than 70,000 dead.

    • Man Speaks of Escape From Nazi Rule at Holocaust Remembrance Service

      Guest speaker Josef Korngruen will tell his story of escape from Nazi rule as a child. Korngruen was born in Austria to Polish parents. It was only after his parents renounced their Polish citizenship and became stateless that they were issued papers that allowed his sisters and him to travel—one sister to Israel, one to America and Josef to England on the Kindertransport.

    • Delays in Poland’s CIA jails case “endangering evidence”

      Delays in Poland’s investigation into whether the CIA ran secret jails on its soil could have caused evidence to be lost and given security services time to cover their tracks, according to a submission to the European Court of Human Rights.

    • Obama’s drone killing program slowly emerges from the secret state shadows

      How much difference does it make for a Pentagon finger to fire a Hellfire missile, rather than the CIA’s? Some, but not enough

    • President Obama: The drones don’t work, they just make it worse

      As the Obama Administration looks to reform its drone program, it should focus on assessing its actual success rate.

    • Woman who helped run CIA torture may get major promotion
    • First female CIA director appointed
    • Obama Appoints First Female Secret Service (Not CIA) Director
    • CIA’s interrogation program deserves public airing

      Americans should assess whether Langley engaged in torture in its war against al-Qaida. The country’s honor is at stake, not just the competence of its primary intelligence service. Neither the CIA nor national security is likely to be harmed if the behemoth were released with the necessary camouflage for operatives, tradecraft and foreign intelligence services.

    • US drones kill 4 in NWA

      The number of drone strikes has decreased dramatically in recent months. The last drone strike took place on March 10. Drone strikes by the United States are deeply resented in the country and considered a violation of Pakistani sovereignty.

    • Commission says no to drones

      County commissioners made it loud and clear Tuesday they want no part of drone testing at the airport.

    • The More Americans Know About Drones, the Less They Like Them

      The Washington Post’s Chris Cillizza gave his most recent “Worst Week in Washington Award” to Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., whose assault weapons ban got stripped from a Democratic gun control package last Tuesday for lack of support. Fair enough, but if nonhumanoids can be eligible for the award (and why discriminate?), I’d say that drones had the “worst week in Washington” last week.

    • Game of drones

      Federal regulators still have until 2015 to come up with drone rules, but some local and state governments don’t want to wait that long. In February, Charlottesville in Virginia, became the first US city to ban drones for two years.
      While these bans are mostly symbolic and would be overruled by a federal drone law, they highlight the anxiety that surrounds drones and doubts whether the FAA – an agency much more experienced in dealing with safety than privacy issues – can produce drone legislation that addresses privacy concerns.
      Those concerns are real, agrees Joanne Gabrynowicz, director of the National Center for Remote Sensing, Air, and Space Law at the University of Mississippi. “But we can come up with a regulatory system. If we did it for satellites I am confident we can do it for drones. But it will be difficult and there a lot of interests involved.”

    • Mayor Bloomberg admits police drones may be coming to NYC

      New York mayor Michael Bloomberg’s been on a roll lately. First he announced he wanted to ban super-size sodas, then it was ear-buds and cigarettes. Now the mayor has announced he may actually allow something. Look up; the Big Apple may soon be called the big brother.

      “What’s the difference whether the drone is up in the air or on the building?” Bloomberg asked when comparing aerial drones to the thousands of security cameras already placed around New York City.

    • A 50-Point Swing Against Targeted Drone Killings of U.S. Citizens

      A year ago, as the presidential race was taking shape, The Washington Post’s pollster asked voters whether they favored the use of drones to kill terrorists or terror suspects if they were “American citizens living in other countries.” The net rating at the time was positive: 65 percent for, 26 percent against.
      Today, after a month of Rand Paul-driven discussion of drone warfare, Gallup asks basically the same question: Should the U.S. “use drones to launch airstrikes in other countries against U.S. citizens living abroad who are suspected terrorists?” The new numbers: 41 percent for, 52 percent against.

  • Cablegate

    • Of Wikileaks, Wikitreats, invisibility and Jack the Giant Slayer
    • Julian Assange’s mother to speak at Murwillumbah
    • WikiLeaks reveals how West’s Iran war drive was undermined

      Former chairperson of the US National Intelligence Council, Thomas Fingar, received the 2013 Sam Adams Award for Integrity in Intelligence on January 23 for his role overseeing the 2007 US National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) on Iran.

      The NIE report’s finding that Iran had no active nuclear weapons program gave lie to years of US-Israeli anti-Iran rhetoric, and has been credited with preventing a pre-emptive war against Iran.

      US diplomatic cables published by WikiLeaks show that the NIE also hampered Western efforts to pass a fourth United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolution against Iran.

    • WikiLeaks trial criticized as opaque and “chilling” to freedom of speech

      New York Times media critic David Carr blasted the United States military’s “eyedropper” approach to releasing information about Pfc. Bradley Manning’s public pretrial in a column on Sunday, March 24. Chronicling the hurdles reporters have faced covering the trial, Carr observed, “A public trial over state secrets was itself becoming a state secret in plain sight.”

      According to Carr, the military has released only 84 documents out of nearly 400 requested under the Freedom of Information Act. The documents released were so redacted the critic wrote they were “mystifying at best and at times almost comic.” Carr also noted that the court did not provide written transcripts from the proceedings.

    • Whistle blowers guard democracy

      The late I. F. “Iffy” Stone was a talented and insightful columnist whose beat was the Washington political arena, and he operated on a premise that every investigative reporter would do well to emulate.

    • ‘Pentagon Papers’ whistleblower defends WikiLeaks ‘hero’ Manning
    • Vietnam War whistleblower defends WikiLeaks ‘hero’

      Pentagon Papers whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg waited decades for someone like Bradley Manning to follow in his footsteps.

      He hails the US Army private accused of spilling secrets to website WikiLeaks as a champion of truth and not a betrayer of his country

    • Wikileaks, free speech and Assange’s message to Australia

      Wikileaks has had a transformative effect on global politics and our attitudes to government power and responsibility.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

  • Finance

    • Corporate Land Grabs Reveal a Hidden Agenda: Controlling the Water

      Reports on land grabbing reveal that investors target control of both the land and the water beneath. Today’s “water barons”- multi-billionaires, financial institutions and corporate multinationals- are increasingly investing in water resources globally. Over-extraction and large land purchases in the Ogallala Aquifer and Great Lakes region in the US are proof that water scarcity is a growing problem not just in the Global South. Furthermore, efforts to track the water footprint of companies and other water-related risks, such as the “water disclosure project,” could actually backfire by providing information to investors interested in water-grabbing. Thus, regulatory mechanisms at the national and international level are needed to control large-scale land (and water) investments threatening the lives and livelihoods of local communities dependent on these resources.

    • IT’S OFFICIAL: Banks In Europe May Now Seize Deposits To Cover Their Gambling Losses

      Although deposits under 100,000 euros will be spared, deposits over 100,000 euros will be seized and subjected to an as-yet undetermined haircut–with the confiscated money going to bail out the gambling losses of the aforementioned reckless idiots who run some of Cyprus’s banks.
      This seizure, needless to say, will dampen the enthusiasm of rich depositors for keeping money in banks that get themselves into financial trouble.
      And because many, many banks in Europe have gotten themselves into financial trouble, this will create a general state of unease among rich depositors throughout the Eurozone.
      And it should wig out some bank lenders, as well.
      After all, never before in the history of this global financial crisis has a major banking system allowed depositors to lose money, no matter how reckless and stupid and greedy their bank managers have been. And only rarely have bank lenders–those who hold bank bonds–been asked to pony up.

    • CYPRUS’ BANKS TO REMAIN CLOSED UNTIL THURSDAY
    • Detroit’s First Day Under an Emergency Financial Manager

      As of today, Detroit is under the control of a governor-appointed Emergency Financial Manager (EFM). The Motor City is the largest district in the nation to have its voters and elected officials sidelined by this new experiment in “crisis management.”

    • JP Morgan Gets an Award for London Whale Fiasco, Will Schneiderman Harpoon the Corruption?

      A JPMorgan Chase employee stepped onstage at a black-tie gala on Wall Street last week to accept a “best crisis management” award given by an investor relations magazine. The bank, which was recently the subject of a U.S. Senate investigative hearing and an ongoing FBI probe into $6.2 billion in trading losses known as the “London Whale” fiasco, is not the subject of ridicule — but praise – from its cronies on Wall Street.

    • WORLD’S FIRST BITCOIN ATM IS ANNOUNCED – FIRST LOCATION: CYPRUS
    • Goldman Rejects Proposal That Firm Run for Elected Office

      Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (GS), the investment bank nicknamed “Government Sachs” because of senior executives who have moved into public posts, won’t be entering politics itself.

      A shareholder proposal that the New York-based company run for office instead of funding political campaigns was discarded, according to a letter last month from the Securities and Exchange Commission, which agreed the firm can exclude the measure from its annual meeting.

    • Bill O’Reilly Gets Smacked By Economics Professor – Nanny States Actually Do Better (VIDEO)

      Fox News can afford to have economists to give its opinion masters factual information. It is obvious they have no interest in that. O’Reilly could not possibly believe what he is saying. Not only is there evidence from Europe as was stated by Professor Wolff, but it was true here in America.

    • Russian Leader Warns, “Get All Money Out Of Western Banks Now!”

      A Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) “urgent bulletin” being sent to Embassies around the world today is advising both Russian citizens and companies to begin divesting their assets from Western banking and financial institutions “immediately” as Kremlin fears grow that both the European Union and United States are preparing for the largest theft of private wealth in modern history.
      According to this “urgent bulletin,” this warning is being made at the behest of Prime Minister Medvedev who earlier today warned against the Western banking systems actions against EU Member Cyprus by stating:

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • As Supreme Court Hears Challenge to ALEC Voting Bill, Two More States Introduce It

      Within days of the U.S. Supreme Court hearing a challenge to an Arizona voting registration law that had been adopted as a “model” by the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), two more states advanced bills that appear to track the ALEC/Arizona template.

      On March 18, the Supreme Court heard oral arguments in Arizona v. Inter Tribal Council of Arizona (ITCA), which will decide whether Arizona’s refusal to register voters that do not provide proof of citizenship is in conflict with federal law.

    • Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg has political ambitions

      PEOPLE WATCHER Mark Zuckerberg has political ambitions to shake up the US immigration system.
      Zuckerberg is rallying a posse of technology politicos to help him create a lobbying group that will campaign – that is, throw money at – liberalising the US immigration and visa system.

    • Journalist claims Washington Post killed article on Iraq war media failures

      The Washington Post has been accused by a journalist of spiking a piece he was commissioned to write about the US media’s failures in the run-up to the invasion of Iraq.

      Greg Mitchell, a veteran journalist and author (see here), claims his assigned piece for the Post was killed and replaced by an article that defended the media’s coverage.

  • Censorship

    • Will bloggers be protected? Maybe – if your blog is “small”
    • State Investigates Complaint about Dietrich Science Teacher’s Human Reproduction Lesson

      A Dietrich science teacher is being investigated by the state’s professional standards commission after a complaint from parents over his teaching methods.

      Tim McDaniel is being investigated after a complaint was filed by a handful of parents who objected to how McDaniel taught the reproductive system, Dietrich Superintendent Neil Hollingshead said.

      “It is highly unlikely it would end with his dismissal,” Hollingshead said. “Maybe a letter of reprimand from the school board.”

      According to McDaniel, four parents were offended that he explained the biology of an orgasm and included the word “vagina” during his lesson on the human reproductive system in a tenth-grade biology course.

      “I teach straight out of the textbook, I don’t include anything that the textbook doesn’t mention,” McDaniel said. “But I give every student the option not attend this class when I teach on the reproductive system if they don’t feel comfortable with the material.”

  • Privacy

    • Microsoft discloses online data to the police

      Microsoft handed over online user account details of 2000 Australians to law enforcement agencies last year. Google and other software companies do the same thing.

    • Under CISPA, Who Can Get Your Data?

      Under CISPA, companies can collect your information in order to “protect the rights and property” of the company, and then share that information with third parties, including the government, so long as it is for “cybersecurity purposes.” Companies aren’t required to strip out personally identifiable information from the data they give to the government, and the government can then use the information for purposes wholly unrelated to cybersecurity – such as “national security,” a term the bill leaves undefined.

    • Privacy groups urge Baroness Ludford to support stronger data rights

      In response to her letter to the Financial Times, ORG and Privacy International have written to Liberal Democrat MEP Baroness Sarah Ludford urging her to support stronger privacy rights in the upcoming and crucial LIBE Committee vote.

    • NSA Facility In Utah To Help Fight Against Cyber-Attacks
    • US Government To Scan Private Firms’ Emails And Web Use

      The US government is planning to scan private firms’ web use and email communications, as part of a bid to prevent cyber-attacks which has been requested by President Obama.

      The government is proposing to extend existing powers, so it can analyse the communications of organisations such as banks, utility providers and transport companies, to prevent online attacks on the country’s infrastructure, according to US security officials.

      The move is in response to an executive order signed by President Obama in February that calls upon the owners and operators of critical US infrastructure to “improve cyber-security information sharing and collaboratively develop and implement risk-based standards”.

    • The Department of Homeland Security Would Like to Talk to Your Hacker Teens

      It’s hard being the Department of Homeland Security. Foreign agents are constantly trying to slip inside the D.H.S.’s computer systems. But America’s hotshot hackers either go for the private sector ($$$) or somewhere you can go on the offensive, like the N.S.A. (which, let’s face it, sounds super-badass).

      So, according to the New York Times, the agency, desperate for recruits, is now making like a college football program and hunting for recruits at high school hacking competitions

    • Calling All High School Hackers
    • To Combat China’s Hacker Army, the U.S. Is Copying Its Methods
    • Government uses video games to recruit teen hackers
    • U.S. government steps up hacker recruiting
  • Civil Rights

    • 102 Years After Triangle Fire, Media Still Wonder How Workers Keep Dying
    • Conscript facing jail again for refusing to go against his conscience

      A handful of Israeli teenagers go to prison every year because they refuse to serve in their country’s army on grounds of conscience.

      Nineteen-year old Natan Blanc from Haifa has been through this seven times in four months.

    • NYC Mayor Bloomberg: Government has right to ‘infringe on your freedom’

      New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg said on Sunday: Sometimes government does know best. And in those cases, Americans should just cede their rights.

    • “Congress has the gall to discretely slip another clause into the #NDAA 2013 that repeals the World War II-era legislation”

      Congress has the gall to discretely slip another clause into the #NDAA 2013 that repeals the World War II-era legislation…

    • Las Vegas City Council Passes NDAA Nullification Resolution

      The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) will not be enforced in Las Vegas. Rejection of the unconstitutional provisions of that controversial federal act was the purpose of a resolution passed by the city council just after noon on March 20.

      By a vote of 5-2, the council passed R-18-2013. The resolution, offered by Ward 2 Councilman Bob Beers, will now be presented to the Clark County (Nevada) Commission.

    • Turns Out The One ‘Good’ Change In CFAA Reform… May Actually Be Bad Too

      So yesterday we broke the news about a proposed CFAA reform bill that, rather than fix the problems of the CFAA made the law much, much worse. It added computer crimes as a racketeering issue, increased sentences and made just talking about a potential CFAA violation the equivalent of having committed it. Bad stuff all around. There was one section, however, that we said was slightly good. We noted that they ever so slightly rolled back what would constitute a crime for “exceeding authorized access” listing out a few qualifications that needed to be met — including that the information obtained was valued over $5,000, that you had to be targeting private information and that the access was done in furtherance of a crime. Based on the bill as written, I had assumed that all of those elements needed to be present to qualify.

    • From the Left: The American Republic has become the American Empire

      The USA Patriot Act codified many of the wishes of statists into law. Whether it is the act’s regulation of bank accounts, the broadening of the government’s authority to deport citizens, or the authorization of roving wiretaps and non-consenting business record searches, the act is only the first brick in the construction of the modern police state. We have also had the unfortunate passage of the National Defense Authorization Act of 2012, which appropriates and divides up defense and war spending, but contains a blatantly unconstitutional clause that gives the government the authority to indefinitely detain American citizens. And now – even after the intense political backlash against the NDAA 2012 – our Congress has the gall to discretely slip another clause into the NDAA 2013 that repeals the World War II-era legislation that prevents the government from using state-approved propaganda, and would make Washington immune to any court cases challenging them.

    • Obama rape and plunder of America

      All that Americans have held on to and relied on is being assaulted. Obama won’t stop until America is forced into submission to his dictatorship plans and the rest of us locked up or killed. What survives the Obama battering rams will be taxed and redistributed to his seduced worshipers. They will be slaves and controlled like mutant little toys, but they will thank Obama and give him their worship.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

03.25.13

Links 25/3/2013: GNU/Linux Migration in Boston Education, KDE in Outreach Program for Women

Posted in News Roundup at 12:27 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

Free Software/Open Source

Leftovers

  • Hardware

    • Thinking aloud: The Price of Hardware Quality

      Some years ago, we had (one may say) good, classic brands of computers, and others not so good. The price of ones and others vary. An original IBM PC was very expensive (all computers were, at the beginning), but clones came cheaper.

      Quality was also quite well divided by boundaries, and followed the quality and durability of the equipment. A Toshiba, or HP, Compaq, etc., machine was considered of good (hardware) quality, and last as long as what you expected for the money you had paid. Maybe some of you still have one of those running a minimal GNU/Linux distribution today because the hardware lasted. (Image Credit: http://www.whitesettlement.lib.tx.us)

  • Health/Nutrition

    • Miracle grow: Indian farmers smash crop yield records without GMOs

      What if the agricultural revolution has already happened and we didn’t realize it? Essentially, that’s the idea in this report from the Guardian about a group of poverty-stricken Indian rice and potato farmers who harvested confirmed world-record yields of rice and potatoes. Best of all: They did it completely sans-GMOs or even chemicals of any kind.

  • Security

    • Windows Malware Takes Advantage of Weak Linux Setups
    • NSA Critiques Public Key Cryptography

      Revelation of the early public key cryptography work of James Ellis, Malcolm Williamson and Cliff Cocks at GCHQ occurred in 1997, eleven years after this secret 1986 review cites them. Whitfield Diffie, one of the inventors or PKC, commented in 1999 on the British precursors:

    • NSA INFOSEC Excitement

      Some time ago, while I was having lunch with the Director of Security of one of our NATO allies and we were discussing the rash of books on intelligence agencies such as the CIA and Britain’s MI-5 and MI-6 that were flooding bookstores, he asked, “Why aren’t there more best selling books on INFOSEC?” I replied, “It’s because the best days we have in INFOSEC are when nothing exciting happens in the outside world. When we are successful, which we are most ofthe time, the result is a non-event.”

    • CMU, NSA search for student hackers

      …participants must reverse engineer, break, hack, decrypt, or do whatever it takes to solve the challenge.

  • Defence/Police/Secrecy/Aggression

  • Cablegate

    • Wikileaks: Power and Consent. Raimond Gaita
    • ‘Pentagon Papers’ whistleblower defends WikiLeaks ‘hero’ Manning

      Sydney, Mar 25 (ANI): Former American military analyst and Pentagon Papers whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg has backed US Army private accused Bradley Manning for spilling secrets to website WikiLeaks.

    • Vietnam whistleblower defends WikiLeaks

      PENTAGON Papers whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg waited decades for someone like Bradley Manning to follow in his footsteps.

      He hails the US Army private accused of spilling secrets to website WikiLeaks as a champion of truth and not a betrayer of his country.

    • In Leak Case, State Secrecy in Plain Sight
    • New York Times Understand Historical Import of Manning Trial – FINALLY
    • Only a Few Reporters Have Bothered to Truly Confront Secrecy in Bradley Manning’s Court Martial

      Just over one year ago, the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR) sent a letter to the military judge presiding over Pfc. Bradley Manning’s court martial that decried the “lack of openness” in proceedings. It condemned the fact that “documents and information filed in the case” were “not available to the public anywhere.” It complained about the failure to give the public proper “notice of issues to be litigated in the case.”

      The US Army did not respond appropriately to the letter. The military court at Fort Meade rebuffed an attempt by a CCR attorney to make a statement on press and public access to proceedings on April 24. The same day the military judge, Army Col. Denise Lind, issued a ruling that invoked Nixon v. Time Warner, a case involving press access to the Watergate tapes, to justify secrecy in the proceedings, and she said the Freedom of Information Act was available to the press if they wanted records. CCR filed a lawsuit in May about a month later (which I signed on to as a plaintiff).

  • Finance

    • Russian Billionaire In Exile Boris Berezovsky Commits Suicide – The First Cyprus Casualty?

      Just your ordinary run of the mill Russian billionaire oligarch in exile who had so much money he was terminally depressed… or just the opposite, and the first tragic casualty of the Cyprus capital controls which are about to eviscerate a whole lot of Russian wealth (and ultraluxury Manhattan real estate prices)?

    • The Cyprus Cartoon Catalog
    • The future of the NHS—irreversible privatisation?

      JILL MOUNTFORD: Lucy, can you explain to us what is going on right now? The Health and Social Care Act has been law now for almost a year, and we thought surely that’s all going to go ahead. All of a sudden there is a lot of movement, a lot of anxiety and a lot of agitation around something that’s happening in parliament that’s going to have a big effect on the National Health Service. What is it and why?

    • Will Goldman Sachs Celebrate Its Latest Victory at a Strip Club?

      Goldman Sachs won a huge victory yesterday. A federal court ruled that Lisa Parisi, a former managing director, must take her gender-discrimination lawsuit against the firm to arbitration.

      With the ruling, Parisi — who had sued Goldman in 2010, along with two other women — can kiss her chances of victory goodbye. Arbitration is where plaintiffs’ dreams go to die, which is probably why it was in her Goldman Sachs employment contract.

      These plaintiffs aren’t renegade feminists. They’re mainstream financial types who played by the rules and hoped to reap the rewards. The men who fought them are simply corporate types who prefer to keep Wall Street an old boys’ club.

      Some of the allegations in the suit are straight out of “Mad Men.” During their work at Goldman Sachs, the women were subject to sexual banter, which is what passes for conversation among traders, as well as to come-ons and sexual assaults. They were passed over for promotions and bonuses, excluded from some male outings and included in others designed to embarrass them. A celebration for new managing directors was held at a topless bar. Afterwards, a married male colleague pinned one of the plaintiffs to a wall and sexually assaulted her.

    • Goldman gets go-ahead for ‘banking factory’

      Goldman Sachs has been granted approval to build a new “banking factory” in the City, ending a protracted bid to develop the site that was held up by protected murals on the existing building.

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • On corporate persons

      And like other giant corporations it already has personhood.

      What makes Google so all-powerful? So Visible? So very Google?

      Are various administrations and Yes, I’m thinking Obama’s, simply afraid of it and the people who run it?

      Is it grandiose?

      Is it a part of the Gobal Elite?

      If Google was Good …

      Google could be everything it touts itself as being — a good company providing genuine services, constantly trying to improve the ‘user experience’.

      It could revolutionise the world of business by being completely transparent in all respects, completely open in its dealings with the people it depends on — you and I — and completely up-front about what it does and how it does it.

      It certainly has enough in the way of hard cash and other reso

    • O’Reilly Demands Respect for the Pagan Goddess Eostre

      Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly (O’Reilly Factor, 3/21/13), claiming victory in the “War on Christmas,” declares that the new battle is the “War on Easter.”

  • Censorship

    • Groups unite to condemn Leveson law

      The Leveson Inquiry was set up to address “the culture, practices and ethics of the press, including contacts between the press and politicians and the press and the police”. Our views diverge on whether the outcome of the Leveson process — and the plans for a new regulator — are the best way forward. But where we all agree is that current attempts at regulating blogs and other small independent news websites are critically flawed.

  • Privacy

  • Civil Rights

    • “Gaming” can be avoided: bloggers can be protected from the Crime and Courts Bill

      We’re told that politicians are concerned, exempting small and medium size businesses from the Bill could lead to “gaming”. That is, a large publisher could create small subsidiaries to avoid the Leveson sticks applying to them. We believe this can be avoided. The Companies Act anticipates “gaming”, and includes protections against it.

    • Constable wants tougher stance on US defense act

      The American Civil Liberties Union describe the 2012 NDAA as “codifying indefinite military detention without charge or trial into law for the first time in American history. The NDAA’s dangerous detention provisions would authorize the president – and all future presidents – to order the military to pick up and indefinitely imprison people captured anywhere in the world, far from any battlefield,” it continues. “The ACLU will fight worldwide detention authority wherever we can, be it in court, in Congress, or internationally.”

      Quiggle made it a written policy last May that he would not cooperate with this portion of the NDAA in his position as constable.

    • Letter: An affront to freedom

      Even the U.S. secretary of defense has expressed misgivings about the NDAA.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Trademarks

      • Google sued for trademark infringement by ‘Android’ watchmaker company

        It seems suing for trademark infringement is really a prevalent game in the business world. Oko International, the maker of a wide range of watches and timepieces sold under the brand name ‘Android,’ is suing the giant Google for trademark infringement.

        A recent rumor in many tech sites is that Google is reportedly building a smartwatch to compete with Apple and Samsung.

    • Copyrights

      • Spanish Government Bows Down To US Pressures Again, Pushes SOPA-Like Law To Appease Hollywood

        While Spain actually has a fairly vibrant culture and entertainment industry, Hollywood has really had it in for the country for some time, in part because Spanish courts had a more evolved recognition of secondary liability protections, such that they ruled that linking is not infringement, and that neither was basic file sharing. Hollywood flipped out, said all sorts of nasty things about Spain, and US diplomats basically handed the Spanish government a new copyright law. The first few attempts to pass the bill failed, after the public spoke out, economists explained how it would hurt the economy rather than help and even the head of the Spanish Film Academy noted that the American movie industry seemed to be fighting the internet and the public.

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