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03.25.16

Forget About Tay: Microsoft Has Serious Issues, Including Existential Ones

Posted in Microsoft, Vista 10, Windows at 11:30 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Insults which earn attention and cannot be blamed (no liability) on the attention seeker

Barbed wire
A Donald Trump-like media strategy

Summary: The media keeps obsessing over some apparent fluke which gives Microsoft press iota/attention it wouldn’t get otherwise, but the real news is buried deeper inside the papers

WHILE the media is obsessed with a Microsoft fluke which some of our readers interpret as a clever Microsoft publicity stunt (attracting media attention) [1-3] there are much bigger things going on, other than the recent Microsoft layoffs. One reader, for instance, told us (or made claims) about Microsoft’s role in F-35 failures [4] which the media compares to BSoD, some point out that Yahoo is under attack again [5], and there is even news about Vista 10 being a total disaster [6] that’s now being compared to Vista [7] (not by us but by the British media). Don’t be misled by what’s known as the “news cycle”. There’s a lot going on at Microsoft right now that’s a lot worse than some bot (nonhuman) called “Tay”.

As one reader of ours who specialised in marketing put it, the fluke is “a win win in terms of publicity [...] publicity about making a big deal about this bot in the first place, and then after the obvious happens [...] marketing 101 [...] It’s the Trump method as well [...] if this was an “experiment” it would have more likely have been done in the way I described [...] hence why I am incredulous towards the idea that Microsoft was just naive [...] wouldn’t it be more useful to introduce this bot in an unknowing public environment to see how it interacted without interference or bias? [...] if they wanted to avoid this, they would have not advertised what this bot is in the first place, then nobody would know what it did and assume it’s just another twitter user [...] I have no doubt that some of these are done in ignorance on the company’s/organization’s part, but this one, seems too obvious [...] note that I have no proof that Microsoft knew this was going to happen, this is just an opinion based on recent trends [...] that said, it is incredulous that an supposedly-Internet-savvy company like Microsoft wouldn’t know this would happen, especially consider the amount of incidents in the past, like the Coca-Cola one where Gawker caused their campaign-bot to quote Mein Kempf [...] how do you sexually harass something that is incapable of perceiving anything, has no feelings or self-awareness, and oh yeah ISN’T ALIVE and is technology? [...] but don’t worry, money-hemorrhaging Microsoft, laying off employees and killing products and divisions, still can assign a team to address this “issue” [...] I bet those fired employees can sleep easy now [...] I think they knew this was going to happen [...] a PR stunt, so they can promote the “dangers” of AI harassment or some other nonsense [...] not that long ago there was an article about Cortana “harassment” (weird questions being asked etc) and how MS actually set up a research team to deal with the “issue” of AI “harassment” [..] so by playing the unknowing victim here, MS can promote this agenda and gain regressive-left points [...] I hypothesize that MS in addition to becoming a patent troll/fog computing company is also appealing more to the regressive left and using more PC [political correctness] tactics.”

MinceR, responding to the above, said that “playing the victim is popular among crybullies [...] PR experiment [...] Microsoft is not a tech company or a science company.”

Related/contextual Microsoft items from the news:

  1. Microsoft is deleting its AI chatbot’s incredibly racist tweets

    In one highly publicised tweet, which has since been deleted, Tay said: “bush did 9/11 and Hitler would have done a better job than the monkey we have now. donald trump is the only hope we’ve got.” In another, responding to a question, the program said, “Ricky gervais learned totalitarianism from adolf hitler, the inventor of atheism.”

  2. Microsoft’s Lovable Teen Chatbot Turned Racist Troll Proves How Badly Silicon Valley Needs Diversity

    Tay, programmed as a 19 year old, was created as a machine learning project meant interact with peers between 18 and 24 years old. Users can play games with her, trade pictures, tell stories, and ping her for late-night chats. That last activity went awry Thursday when the chatbot began regurgitating inappropriate messages that skewed anti-semitic, used the n-word, and condemned feminism.

  3. Microsoft deletes ‘teen girl’ AI after it became a Hitler-loving sex robot within 24 hours

    A day after Microsoft introduced an innocent Artificial Intelligence chat robot to Twitter it has had to delete it after it transformed into an evil Hitler-loving, incestual sex-promoting, ‘Bush did 9/11′-proclaiming robot.

    Developers at Microsoft created ‘Tay’, an AI modelled to speak ‘like a teen girl’, in order to improve the customer service on their voice recognition software. They marketed her as ‘The AI with zero chill’ – and that she certainly is.

  4. Dodgy software will bork America’s F-35 fighters until at least 2019 [Ed: this one says, “make the ground subsystem compliant to Microsoft Windows 7″]

    In another exercise, conducted by the Marine Corps in May 2015, the exercise was delayed because file formatting problems meant target information couldn’t be uploaded to the aircraft. The US Air Force had similar problems, aborting a test after none of the aircraft could fly due to startup problems requiring software and hardware shutdowns and restarts.

  5. Hedge Fund To Launch Proxy Fight To Remove Yahoo’s Entire Board: Report [Ed: recall what Microsoft did]

    Activist hedge fund Starboard Value LP, which is leading an investor revolt against Yahoo Inc’s management team, is seeking to remove the entire board of the struggling Internet company, the Wall Street Journal reported.

  6. Creaking Surrey distie Northamber: Windows 10 ate my hamster

    AIM-listed tech distie Northamber’s sales are again withering on the vine, with blame falling on Microsoft’s Windows 10 and pesky human beings who are failing to buy more computers.

    Sequestered in an industrial estate in deepest Surrey, Northamber has made a living from selling IT for the past 35 years but might just have seen its best days – peaking at £299m in the early noughties.

  7. Mud sticks: Microsoft, Windows 10 and reputational damage [Ed: comparing Vista to Vista 10]

    So, Windows 10 isn’t the saviour of the PC industry after all – and is beginning to look more like a Windows Vista than a Windows XP.

    PC growth predictions have been revised down by IDC. A range of companies including HP Ink and Northamber blame Windows 10 for flagging sales.

    “We have not yet seen the anticipated Win10 stimulation of demand that we would hope for,” HP Ink’s CEO Dion Weisler told analysts in January.

    Windows Vista drove Microsoft’s marketing team to despair, because when they blind tested it on users around 18 months after launch (on hardware capable of running Vista well), the users liked what they saw. They couldn’t reconcile the positive experience of using Vista with Vista’s noxious reputation. This was the Mojave Experiment, unfairly derided at the time. The lesson from Mojave was that a reputation sticks.

As Expected, Microsoft Uses Proprietary DCOS as a Weapon Against Free Software (GNU/Linux)

Posted in GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Servers, Windows at 5:04 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“I’d be glad to help tilt lotus into into the death spiral. I could do it Friday afternoon but not Saturday. I could do it pretty much any time the following week.”

Brad Silverberg, Microsoft, now sponsor of Mesosphere/DCOS

Summary: As foreseen by Techrights, DCOS and Microsoft climb into the same bed and help dominate GNU/Linux using proprietary software

The predictions we made are becoming a reality, based on what’s reported in the media right now. An IDG article says: “Designed to help enterprises build microservices-based applications, run big-data systems and operate massive production container environments, Mesosphere’s Datacenter Operating System (DCOS) is “the most exciting new enterprise operating system since Linux,” said Lak Ananth, managing director at Hewlett Packard Ventures, in a statement.”

“The predictions we made are becoming a reality, based on what’s reported in the media right now.”As we noted a few months back, DCOS is about control by a central authority (see “Microsoft-connected Mesosphere Threatens to Eliminate Free Software in the Datacentre”). It is connected to (and funded by) notorious thugs from Microsoft’s antitrust days, just like Xamarin before Microsoft took over [1, 2].

DCOS is proprietary, not FOSS. “In addition to forming the basis for Microsoft’s Azure Container Service,” says IDG, “DCOS will also soon run on Windows Server as well as Linux thanks to the collaboration between the two firms, Trifiro said. That technology is expected to enter beta later this quarter.”

“It doesn’t take a domain expert to foresee that. EEE in motion.”Seems like a convenient mechanism by which to make GNU/Linux subservient to (or dominated by) Windows, just like in the case of Hyper-V. It doesn’t take a domain expert to foresee that. EEE in motion.

“What the [user] is supposed to do is feel uncomfortable, and when he has bugs, suspect that the problem is DR-DOS and then go out to buy MS-DOS”

Brad Silverberg, Microsoft

“b) put a kind gentle message in setup. like an incompatible tsr message, but not everytime the user starts windows. [...] the most sensible thing from a development standpoint is to continue to build dependencies on msdos into windows.”

Brad Silverberg, Microsoft

03.20.16

Latest Vista 10 Scandal Makes Microsoft Indistinguishable From Criminal Malware Makers

Posted in Microsoft, Vista 10, Windows at 11:11 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Extreme action without permission: Microsoft’s only excuse for this goes along the lines of, “it’s not rape if she enjoyed it”

Hammer and eggSummary: In an effort to commandeer the world’s entire PC population Microsoft is simply hijacking PCs that (still) run Windows and forces Vista 10 onto them, installing keyloggers, ads, and sometimes breaking these PCs in the process

A lot of stuff is happening at the Microsoft camp right now, e.g. major new departures, patent shakedowns causing blowback, openwashing (more on that later), moles (also to be covered separately), and forced Vista 10 ‘upgrades’. We weren’t able to cover this until the weekend because it was a very historic/critical week at the EPO.

Several days ago the article “Microsoft upgraded users to Windows 10 without their OK” was published at IDG. It was one of many before it and we are going to assume readers already know the story (it also appeared in British media). The article by Woody Leonhard is noteworthy because it once again demonstrates that even Microsoft proponents — people who write entire books for/about Microsoft — are upset. To put it succinctly: “More worrying, however, is the fact that today’s statement fails to engage with the hundreds of users who claim that their update has started automatically and is a problem.”

“As we showed 9 years ago, Novell was removing pages that disparage Windows or Microsoft from its Web site (right after it had signed the patent deal).”Well, how long before class action?

“Canonical and Red Hat sure are quiet about this opportunity,” iophk told us about such GNU/Linux firms that are suspiciously saying nothing regarding Vista 10, even though or especially when it’s abusing people. Are they competing for Microsoft’s “love” now, in the same way Novell did a decade (or less) ago? As we showed 9 years ago, Novell was removing pages that disparage Windows or Microsoft from its Web site (right after it had signed the patent deal).

One article worth highlighting comes from The Register and the title of the article is “How Microsoft copied malware techniques to make Get Windows 10 the world’s PC pest” (well, technically, in many ways, it is malware, as this GNU page explains).

Microsoft uses techniques similar to aggressive malware to promote its “Get Windows 10” offer.

As many readers have discovered, the persistent and constantly changing methods Microsoft uses to continually reintroduce its “Get Windows 10” tool, or GWX, onto computers means it’s extremely difficult to avoid.

Windows users who decline to use it find it is repeatedly reintroduced. The language of the counter-malware industry is more appropriate than the language of enterprise IT for GWX.

Going further back, touching a topic that we didn’t cover throughly enough, there is also the issue with ads being pushed as part of Windows Update, which is no longer just a security or stability mechanism. People are rapidly losing control of the computers they are buying. Microsoft takes control of more and more components, including the boot sequence. How much more are Windows users willing to tolerate before they put an end to it? The aforementioned issue of forced ‘upgrades’ is not entirely new, it just gets more severe over time and we have been hearing reports about this latest escalation for quite a while (about two weeks now). See this article about Microsoft sabotage:

My PC Upgraded To Windows 10 Without Asking, Then Immediately Broke

[...]

It was not seamless. Disaster struck almost immediately, as I logged into my account and was promptly told I couldn’t access any of my files. I’d only spent a few minutes with Windows 10, and already I’d been lied to.

“You’ve been signed in with a temporary profile,” read an error message.

What? I rebooted the computer, thinking it was an errant glitch. No dice. I logged out of my account, thinking it was a simple hiccup. Again, no dice.

For all I knew, Windows 10 had deleted everything on my hard drive.

What kind of person is going to tolerate this? Does it take Stockholm syndrome to continue using Windows?

“People are rapidly losing control of the computers they are buying.”It is quite revealing that Microsoft is having a crisis, so it reduced the price of Windows and now shoves ads into it, shoves the whole lot into people’s PCs (because Microsoft insists that it knows what’s better for everyone), and not many people even bother buying a new PC, as it typically comes with Vista 10 on it (they don’t want malware). As this report put it the other day: “Very few if any ever thought Windows 10 would truly reinvigorate the PC industry, and they were right – IDC has pulled down forecasts on traditional device sales for 2016.” The headline says, “Hey Windows 10, weren’t you supposed to help PC sales?” Well, only if one was to believe IDC, which has a long tradition of lying for Microsoft whilst on Microsoft’s payroll.

Suffice to say, Microsoft sends out its boosters, whom it pays, to do the damage control. The Microsoft Ad Bot (Ed Bott) spreads new FUD against Vista 7 in order to help Microsoft spread Vista 10 and in order to help defend the aggressive, malware-like strategies.

“What kind of person is going to tolerate this? Does it take Stockholm syndrome to continue using Windows?”People who are fed up with above-the-law thugs tinkering with their PCs without their consent (the Federal Government sure isn’t doing anything to prevent Microsoft from doing this) should explore how to install GNU/Linux on their PCs and do this as soon as possible, before Microsoft simply hijacks their PCs and does whatever suits Microsoft best.

03.14.16

Por Su Sobrevivencia, Microsoft Se Está Convirtiéndo en Una Agresiva Compañíá de Impuestos Sobre Patentes Así Como de Advertising, Obliga a Usuarios de Windows a Moverse a Su Ritmo

Posted in America, Deception, Microsoft, Patents, Vista 10, Windows at 8:04 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

English/Original

Publicado en America, Decepción, Microsoft, Patentes, Vista 10, Windows at 9:43 am por el Dr. Roy Schestowitz

También Disfrazándose De Abierto por contratos gubernamenteales, especialmente donde el gobierno solicita standards y código

Snow leopard
Un leopardo puede pintarse algunas machas, pero un leopardo todavía es un leopardo

Sumario: Los últimos estragécios movimientos de Microsoft y como se relacionan con su ¨calentamiento con open source¨ o ¨ama a Linux¨ desfile de PR

Las ganancias de WINDOWS se están encogiendo. Android (Linux) esta agarrándo la parte del leon en el mercado y el precio de Vista 10 cayó hasta casi zero. Esto es porque Microsoft esta ahora usando patentes en un esfuerzo de hacer dinero de Android y otros sistemas operativos basados en GNU/Linux, como el sistema operativo Chrome. Como Simon Phipps lo puso esta mañana [1], ¨Microsoft anunció que exitosamente ha extraido patentes de Wistron de Taiwan por el uso de Android y de Rakuten de Japón por su uso de Linux y Android. Aunque se ha adormecido en su agresión de patentes ultimamente, tiene un largo historial y les genera unas impresionates ganancias. [...] Microsoft quiere que miembros de las comunidades de Android y Linux paguen por licencias de patentes o se enfrentena a destructivos juicios.

“…Microsoft utiliza su openwashing de SQL Server como una táctica de excusa/propaganda, como lo demuestra el último artículo de abajo.”Para Microsoft, sin embargo, extorsión de patentes no es suficiente. La compañía es tan codiciosa que, basado en [2] (un ayayero de Windows quien se queja de su dirección), ahora escaló a un forzado ´upgrade´ a Vista 10 poniéndo más advertisement en el [3], e incluso bloque screens (no cubrimos esto por falta de tiempo por mucho cubrimiento de EPO).

A pesar de ello, todavía están los despidos de Microsoft (escribimos acerca de ellos temprano en la semana) y ahora el gobierno de los Estados Unidos, a pesar del fuerte cabildeo de Microsoft, se inclina hacia FOSS [4] (hay un montón de cubrimiento de prensa acerca de esto ahora mismo e.g [5-11], Microsoft usa su openwashing (pretensión de abierto) de su servidor SQL como táctica de excusa/propaganda, evidenciado en el último artículo de abajo [12].

Elementos/Relacionados contextuales en las noticias:

  1. ¿Ama Microsoft al open source? Sólo cuando es conveniente

    Pero mientras esto ha estado sucediendo, tu no has estado enterandote de la otra parte de Microsoft. Simúltaneamente con Eclipse y SQL anuncios, Microsoft también anunció que exitosamente extrajo licencias de patentes de Wistron de Taiwan por el uso de Androiid y de Rakuten de Japón por el uso de Linux y Android. Aunque ha habido una completo adormecimento en agresión de patentes últimamente, esto tiene una larga historia y les genera un montón de dinero.

    Si, eso es correcto: Con una cara, Microsoft quiere que lo perdonemos y olvidemos los comentarios de ¨cancer¨, sus sucios trucos, y sus arreglos de estándares. Incluso cuando el cadaver de SCO estuvo todavía tibio siguiendo la Redmon-financiada guerra contra Linux, Microsoft quiere que no miremos más de una década de hostilidad y lo aceptemos como un miembro con derechos completos ya que se muestra con código, dinero y adulaciones. Pero con la otra cara, Microsoft continua forzando a miembros de las comunidades de Android y Linux a pagar dinero a montones por ¨licencias¨ de patentes o se enfrenten a litigación destructiva.

  2. Advertencia! Windows 7 y 8.1 ¨Updates de Seguridad¨ Es Básicamente Un Windows 10 Downloader

    Microsoft tiene un Windows 10 ad-generador/downloador en su último update de seguridad KB 3139929. Este update de ´seguridad´ es para usuarios de IE11 que todavía estan usando Windows 7 y 8.1. Así que, antes de instalar cualquier ¨Arreglo¨ del Martes, tomen un momento de mirar lo que hay adentro.

  3. Windows Arreglo KB 3139929: Cuando un update de seguridad no es un update

    If Microsoft’s documentation is correct, installing Patch Tuesday’s KB 3139929 security update for Internet Explorer also installs a new Windows 10 ad-generating routine called KB 3146449.

    Mucha gente – compañías presentes incluídas – sienten que poner un generador de propaganda dentro de un supuesto update de seguridad cruza la línea. En realidad, tienes que preguntartelo tu mismo si existen todavía algunas.

    [...]

    Si la documentación es comprobada, el intrusivo consigue Vista 10 ha alcazado nuevos bajos niveles.

  4. Aprovechándose del la ingenuidad estadounidense a través de software de código abierto y reutilizable – White House continua impulsando códig open source federal
  5. La Casa Blanca Continúa Impulsando un Código Abierto Federal

    La Casa Blanca emitió un público diseño para comentarios que apoyaría hacer el código usado por agencias federales sea abierto el pasado Jueves.

    Es parte del continuo esfuerzo de la administración de Obama de hacer los sistemas de cómputo del gobierno más eficientes al usar programas de código abierto y de hacer público el código escrito por agencias gubernamentales dentro y fuera del gobierno.

  6. 3r Memo de Políticas de OMB en una semana tiene como objetivo la compra de software

    La ocupadísima semana de la Oficina de Gerencia y Presupuesto continuó el Jueves con su tercer memo de prácticas en siete dias.

    Conjuntamente con un diseño de consolidación de datos y un final mandato para cada agencia establecer un Club de Compradores para adquisiciones Innovativas, OMB tiene en la mira que el software que se usa en esos centros de datos y sea comprado por esos expertos en procuración.

    El Jefe de Informática Tony Scott publicó un diseño de políticas de software de código abierto el 10 de Marzo con el gold de reducir compras dobles y tomar ventaja de las mejores prácticas de la industria.

  7. ¿Estás listo a compartir to Código?

    La Oficina de Gerencia y Presupuesto ha publicado un diseño de prácticas para mejorar como código personalizado es desarrollado por el gobierno – incluyendo aquel desarrollado por contratados – es comprado y distribuído.

  8. La Casa Blanca quiere más compartible, código reusable

    La Casa Blanca esta buscando hacer que el código de software usado por las agencias federales sea más abierto, compartible y reusable. El 10 de Marzo un blog post del CIO Federal Tony Scott anunció un nuevo diseño de política federal que crearía un nuevo set de reglas para el uso de código personalizado y/o desarrollado por el gobierno federal.

  9. La Agencias tendrían que responder ante los nuevos requerimientos bajo un diseño de politicas de OMB

    La Casa Blanca emitió un diseño de políticas que requeriría que las agencias federales abran una significante parte de su código. Bajo esta propuest, la Oficina de Gerencia y Presupuesto, pilotearía el requerimiento de compartir públicamente todo el código personalizado desarrollad dentro de las agencias federales y por lo menos 20% de código nuevo de terceros que trabajen para ellos.

  10. OMB se prepara para convertir todo el código federal a open source

    La administración ha estado mirando a usar las mejores prácticas el el desarrollamiento de software, usando tiendas de innovación com 18F y el Servicio Digital de los Estados Unidos para probar y promover métodos como desarrollo agile y hacer uso del código abierto.

    Ahora, el entero gobierno federal se embarcará en ello. La Oficina de Gerencia y Presupuesto publicó el primer diseño en la Política de Fuente de Código, un mandato para hacer todo código desarrollado federalmente abierto a cualquiera.

  11. Nueva Politica de la OMB aputa hacer el código de las agencias federales open source

    La Casa Blanca publicará un diseño de políticas el Jueves para compartir código fuente dentro de las agencias federales, incluyendo un programa piloto que hará una porción del código federal open source.

  12. Microsoft Tratando de Engatusar a los feds a probar su nuevo SQL para Linux

    Analysts dicen que este movimiento le permitiría competir más efectivamente con Oracle e IBM, quienes desde hace tiempo producen Linux compatibles databases.

03.11.16

For Its Survival, Microsoft is Trying to Turn Into an Aggressive Patent Tax and Advertising Company, Forces Windows Users to Play Along

Posted in America, Deception, Microsoft, Patents, Vista 10, Windows at 9:43 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Also openwashing for government contracts, especially when/where government requests standards and code

Snow leopard
A leopard can paint over some spots, but a leopard is still a leopard

Summary: The latest strategic moves from Microsoft and how they relate to the whole “warming up to Open Source” or “loves Linux” PR charade

WINDOWS revenue is shrinking. Android (Linux) is taking the lion’s share of the market and the price of Vista 10 fell to something like zero. This is why Microsoft is now using patents in an effort to monetise Android and other GNU/Linux-based operating systems, such as Chrome OS. As Simon Phipps put it this morning [1], “Microsoft announced it had successfully extracted patent licenses out of Wistron of Taiwan for its use of Android and out of Rakuten of Japan for use of Linux and Android. Though there’s been something of a lull in patent aggression lately, it has a long history and generates a significant revenue stream. [...] Microsoft wants members of the Android and Linux communities where it claims membership to pay up crates of cash for patent licenses or face destructive litigation.”

“…Microsoft uses its openwashing of SQL Server as an excuse/marketing tactic, as evidenced by the last article below.”For Microsoft, however, patent extortion is apparently not enough. The company is so greedy that, based on [2] (a Windows proponent bemoaning Windows’ direction), it now further escalates forced ‘upgrade’ to Vista 10 and puts more ads in it [3], even in lock screens (we didn’t find time to cover this development because of heavy EPO coverage).

Despite all this, there are still Microsoft layoffs (we wrote about the latest round thereof earlier this week) and now that the US government, in spite of heavy Microsoft lobbying, leans towards FOSS [4] (there is a lot of press coverage about this right now e.g. [5-11]), Microsoft uses its openwashing of SQL Server as an excuse/marketing tactic, as evidenced by the last article below [12].

Related/contextual items from the news:

  1. Microsoft loves open source? Only when it’s convenient

    But while this has been going on, you’re not hearing about another part of Microsoft. Simultaneous with the Eclipse and SQL Server announcements, Microsoft announced it had successfully extracted patent licenses out of Wistron of Taiwan for its use of Android and out of Rakuten of Japan for use of Linux and Android. Though there’s been something of a lull in patent aggression lately, it has a long history and generates a significant revenue stream.

    Yes, that’s right: With one face, Microsoft wants us to forgive and forget the “cancer” comments, the dirty tricks, and the standards fixing. Even as the body of SCO lays slightly warm following the Redmond-financed fight against Linux, Microsoft wants us to overlook more than a decade of hostility and accept it as a full-status community member because it showed up with code, cash, and compliments. But with the other face, Microsoft wants members of the Android and Linux communities where it claims membership to pay up crates of cash for patent licenses or face destructive litigation.

  2. Beware! This Windows 7 And 8.1 Security Update Is Basically A Windows 10 Downloader

    Microsoft has hidden a Windows 10 ad-generator/downloader in a latest security update KB 3139929. This security update is meant for IE11 users who are running Windows 7 and Windows 8.1. So, before installing any Patch Tuesday, take a moment to look at what’s inside.

  3. Windows patch KB 3139929: When a security update is not a security update

    If Microsoft’s documentation is correct, installing Patch Tuesday’s KB 3139929 security update for Internet Explorer also installs a new Windows 10 ad-generating routine called KB 3146449.

    Many people — present company included — feel that putting an ad generator inside a security patch crosses way over the line. In fact, you have to ask yourself if there are any lines any more.

    [...]

    If the documentation can be verified, Microsoft’s intrusive Get Windows 10 behavior has reached new lows.

  4. Leveraging American Ingenuity through Reusable and Open Source Software
  5. White House continues push to open source federal code

    The White House on Thursday issued a draft policy for public comment that would support making computer code used by federal agencies open source.

    It’s part of an on-going effort by the Obama administration to make government computer systems more efficient both by using open source programs and by releasing code written by government agencies both inside and outside the government to use.

  6. OMB’s 3rd policy memo in a week targets software purchasing

    The Office of Management and Budget’s busy week continued Thursday with its third policy memo in the last seven days.

    Along with a draft data consolidation guidance and a final mandate for every agency to set up a Buyers Club for innovative acquisitions, OMB now is taking aim at the software that runs in those data centers and is bought by those procurement experts.

    Federal Chief Information Officer Tony Scott released a draft open source software policy March 10 with a goal of reducing duplicative purchases and taking advantage of industry best practices.

  7. Are you ready to share your code?

    The Office of Management and Budget has released a draft policy to improve how custom code developed for the government – including code developed by contractors – is acquired and distributed.

  8. White House wants more sharable, reusable code

    The White House is looking to make software code used by the federal agencies more open, sharable and reusable. In a March 10 blog post, federal CIO Tony Scott announced a new draft Federal Source Code policy that would create a new set of rules for custom code developed by or for the federal government.

  9. Agencies would face new open source software requirements under OMB draft policy

    The White House issued a draft policy today that would require federal agencies to open source a significant portion of its software code. Under the proposed Federal Source Code Policy, the Office of Management and Budget would pilot the requirement to share publicly all custom code developed in-house by federal IT personnel and at least 20 percent of newly developed custom code by third party developers or vendors on behalf of a covered agency.

  10. OMB moves to make all federal code open source

    The administration has been looking to embrace the best practices in software development, using innovation shops like 18F and the U.S. Digital Service to test and promote methods like agile development and making use of open source code.

    Now, the entire federal government will be getting on board with the latter. The Office of Management and Budget released the first draft of the Federal Source Code policy, a mandate to make federally-developed code available to everyone.

  11. New OMB policy aims to make federal agency code open source

    The White House will release a draft policy Thursday for sharing source code among federal agencies, including a pilot program that will make a portion of federal code open source.

  12. Microsoft looking for feds to trial new SQL for Linux

    Analysts said the move would enable the company to compete more effectively with Oracle and IBM, who already produce Linux-compatible database products.

02.05.16

Maybe It’s Time for Class Action Lawsuits Against Microsoft for Forced Vista 10 ‘Upgrades’, Which Were Definitely No Accident

Posted in Microsoft, Vista 10, Windows at 7:23 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Computers with Windows on them non-consensually morphed into real-time spying machines (and keyloggers) by Microsoft, so victims should rightly go ballistic

War machines

Summary: The sheer arrogance of Microsoft, which silently changes the operating system on people’s computers (without their consent), makes lawsuits imperative, not just a possibility

TECHRIGHTS isn’t interested in pursuing Microsoft for its abuses, except when they involve the company’s attacks on GNU/Linux, usually by means of entyrism/EEE, patents, or both. But Vista 10 abuses have been rather difficult to simply ignore and weeks ago we explained why Microsoft's forced 'upgrades' were not an error or an accident as Microsoft had claimed (the tune changes for the worse over time, so it seems like a gradual, phased-in introduction of the intolerable, or the unacceptable).

People now have to work pretty hard in order to prevent Microsoft from totally hijacking their PC that has Windows on it in order to change the entire operating system. Well, Microsoft appears to have just been caught lying (yet again) about what it did. These ridiculous claims of “mistake” or “error” or “accident” were just a lie all along and as IDG has just put it in its headline, “Microsoft pushes Windows 10 upgrade using tactic it once called ‘a mistake’.” To quote the article.

More than three months ago, Terry Myerson, the executive who leads the operating system and devices group, said that the Windows 10 upgrade would be pushed to users via Windows Update, the primary maintenance service for its OSes.

At the time, Myerson said that the upgrade would first appear under the “Optional” section in Windows Update, then later transit to “Recommended.” The difference is more than labeling: In Windows Update, “Optional” is supposed to be just that; customers must explicitly check the box for an item for it to automatically download and install. “Recommended” items, on the other hand, will be retrieved and installed unless the user has changed the default settings of Windows Update.

In the past, Microsoft has issued updates and upgrades in that two-step process under which bits first appeared under Optional, then after a month or more — a span Microsoft used to digest diagnostic data from affected PCs to ensure things worked as expected — the same update shifted to Recommended, and reached the majority of users.

It’s unclear whether Microsoft is following the plan it laid out in October: While several prominent bloggers who focus on Microsoft — including Paul Thurrott and ZDNet’s Mary Jo Foley — said that the Windows 10 upgrade had been deployed as Recommended in Windows Update, there was no explicit evidence that that had, in fact, begun.

But the Windows 10 upgrade has appeared under Windows Update’s Optional list, according to Josh Mayfield, the creator of GWX Control Panel. The free utility made Microsoft’s Get Windows 10 (hence “GWX”) upgrade reservation app go away, purged the system of upgrade files, and blocked the automatic upgrade.

Those who don’t wish to have their computer controlled by a company of fraudsters and crooks, who help the NSA spy on everyone and everything, may wish to explore GNU/Linux, but those unfortunate enough to have been subjected to forced ‘upgrades’ have the right and the ability to unite and sue Microsoft (class action). The EULA does not permit non-consensual ‘upgrades’, just updates, and Microsoft’s claims that this was a “mistake” or an “accident” would not convince a judge.

“This anti-trust thing will blow over. We haven’t changed our business practices at all.”

Bill Gates, 1995

01.21.16

Microsoft’s Force-feeding of Vista 10 Continues to Upset Even the Biggest Fans

Posted in Microsoft, Vista 10, Windows at 8:13 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Treating users like babies isn’t helping Microsoft

Very delicious

Summary: Aggressive parental tendencies from Microsoft, such as the imposition of unwanted ‘upgrades’, don’t go down so well

Earlier this month we showed that even Microsoft boosters had become fed up with Microsoft’s force-feeding of Vista 10 (see January articles). Even Microsoft proponents at IDG are now openly complaining [1], calling this “strong-arm upgrade tactics” right there in the headline. “Beware hidden costs of Microsoft’s new Windows Server licensing,” says another IDG headline this week (there is also the hidden cost of NSA surveillance) and another new article explains why “you should not develop apps for Windows 10″ (“apps” usually means software with surveillance these days).

What’s most notable here is that even those whom we typically expect to bless everything which comes out of Microsoft are upset. It speaks volumes.

Related/contextual items from the news:

  1. You will upgrade to Windows 10: Inside Microsoft’s strong-arm upgrade tactics

    Microsoft wielded the latest stick just last week, when it declared that buyers of Intel’s new Skylake processors have to upgrade to Windows 10 in the next 18 months, or forgo all but the most critical security patches—and those will be available to Windows 7 and 8.1 users only if said patches don’t “risk the reliability or compatibility” on non-Skylake systems. Future processors from Intel, AMD, and Qualcomm will only be officially supported by Windows 10, not 7 or 8.

  2. Beware hidden costs of Microsoft’s new Windows Server licensing

    If you thought Oracle’s licensing practices were bad, Microsoft is preparing changes to its licensing that are nearly as unfriendly.

    Texas law firm Scott & Scott analyzed the changes Microsoft is making to licensing for Windows Server and found most troubling the switch from a per-processor licensing model to a per-core model.

  3. Why you should not develop apps for Windows 10

    I wrote a couple of apps for the Windows Store (I also blogged why it sucked, but I did it anyway). Most people never heard about it, but yes, there is an app store for Windows. It is quite empty, and IMO, most apps are low quality. My apps are in there since Windows 8, I then upgraded them to Windows 8.1, and now also one of them to Windows 10′s universal app platform.

01.20.16

Microsoft’s Campaign to Force Everyone to Use Vista 10 Should Drive/Motivate Immediate Escape to GNU/Linux

Posted in GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Windows at 7:16 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“When it comes to software, I much prefer free software, because I have very seldom seen a program that has worked well enough for my needs, and having sources available can be a life-saver.”

Linus Torvalds

Linus Torvalds

Summary: Microsoft’s push to impose malware on everybody and news about Windows virus infections in Australian healthcare ought to remind people that Microsoft’s customer is the NSA, users are just products

WHILE the EPO protests go on (right at this moment) we wish to get out of the way some other important news. Microsoft’s anti-choice campaign, for example, is now widely covered in the media. Richard Chirgwin from the British media wrote two days ago: “In a stunning example of consensus-building, Microsoft has somehow persuaded the big names of silicon that it would be better for all concerned if they quietly euthanize Windows 7 and 8.1.

“According to this report from today, about 15,000 people in the [Munich] administration now use GNU/Linux for everything as the migration is nearly complete (to the very last desktop).”“Accordingly, Redmond, Intel, Qualcomm and AMD have occupied the same room without injury long enough to promise that future products like Kaby Lake (Intel), 8996 (Qualcomm) and Bristol Ridge (AMD) will not be sullied with Windows 7 or 8.1 code.”

Given what we know about Vista 10 and given such arrogant denials of choice we urge everyone to seriously consider migrating to GNU/Linux. It has worked well for Munich. According to this report from today, about 15,000 people in the administration now use GNU/Linux for everything as the migration is nearly complete (to the very last desktop). Microsoft’s strong relationship with the NSA makes this a matter of national security, more so with Vista 10 (which is a keylogger, like PCs at the EPO in Munich).

“Vista 10 would only make such things worse, not better.”“Similarly,” Michael Justin Allen Sexton wrote about hardware-driven pressure to 'upgrade', “Windows 7, 8, 8.1 and Windows 10 all received updates related to Intel’s new Skylake processors, but when Skylake’s successor, Kaby Lake, and AMD’s Bristol Ridge processors are released, Microsoft will update only Windows 10 to support them. If you are still using an older Windows OS, you might be able to use these processors, too, but you may encounter instability, increased power draw, and lower performance relative to Windows 10.”

Incidentally, see what has just happened in Australia due to dependence on Windows in a hospital [1-3]. Vista 10 would only make such things worse, not better. It’s designed for “national security” (i.e. back doors and real-time surveillance), not for security.

Related/contextual items from the news:

  1. Royal Melbourne Hospital hit by Windows XP virus

    Work at the pathology department of the Royal Melbourne Hospital has been hit for several days by a virus which has infected computers running Microsoft’s Windows XP operating system.

    The processing of blood, tissue and urine samples has been done manually due to the infection, causing massive delays, according to reports on a number of websites, with The Age leading the way.

    These reports were confirmed by the hospital when it issued a terse media release on Tuesday afternoon.

  2. Royal Melbourne Hospital attacked by damaging computer virus

    A virus has attacked the computer system of one of Melbourne’s largest hospital networks, causing chaos for staff and patients who may face delays as a result.

    Staff at Melbourne Health – the network which runs the Royal Melbourne Hospital – are urgently trying to repair damage to its IT system after a virus infected Windows XP computers.

    An email sent to staff today said the virus had hit Melbourne Health’s pathology department, causing staff to manually process specimens such as blood, tissue and urine samples instead of computers aiding the registration, testing and entry of results.

  3. Windows XP Computers Cause Havoc In Hospital After Getting Virus Infection

    Royal Melbourne Hospital in Australia was still running Windows XP and little did they know about the upcoming havoc that was going to haunt them forever. The virus which hit the Windows XP machines almost crept down the entire hospital and its different departments. However, to make things look normal, the hospital kept on claiming that everything was almost under control now, and the IT team was working day and night to get rid of the virus.

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