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Links 21/10/2015: UK Government Kicks Out Microsoft, France’s Citizens Vote for FOSS

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  • Linux Users, Start Your Engines
    Simple. Linux and FOSS have a wide cast of Coopers and Shelbys making high performance versions of mass-produced distros, building on the foundation of one of the “big three” Linux distros to make fire-breathing, pixel-burning distros; distros that are the digital equivalent of vehicles that are more than just for taking the kids to soccer practice or zipping over to the grocery store.

    In fact, many of the less-than-mainstream distros out there — most of the nearly 300 Linux and BSD distros, as a matter of fact — are more than just a developer “scratching an itch.” In many cases, it’s a matter of chopping and channeling, boring out the engine, adding high performance parts, aerodynamic devices like spoilers and air dams, and even painting a flame or two on the side.

  • Meet Solu, a Gorgeous and Revolutionary Mini PC Powered by Linux - Video
    A group of Finnish developers are convinced that Solu, a revolutionary, beautiful and minimalist computer, will change the way you think about computing.

  • What Features Did Windows 10 Steal From Linux?
    Three months have passed since Microsoft launched its new OS, the Windows 10, which will be the last edition of Windows. This means that, from now on, the developers will release only updates and will continue to improve this platform. But what did Windows 10 bring new? Of course, many features. But are they… new, or inspired from other OS? Let’s see what Microsoft stole from Linux.

  • Linux: When Uniformity is Good
    We’ve been in this bid’ness for ten years now. The business of giving Linux-powered computers to kids who cannot afford this technology, or any technology for that matter. And so far so good. There have been some lessons learned along the way. Some of those lessons small but valuable. Some of those lessons so painful that we had no choice but to change the way we do things. And never doubt…there were uh, spirited discussions about this change. Yeah, we’ll stick to “spirited”. I’ve been to football matches in Great Britain and Germany that couldn’t come close to such levels of “spirit.” So which thing could bring about this measure of “spirited” discussion?

  • Desktop

    • GALPon Minino Another Lightweight Linux Distribution For 10+ Years OLD Computers
      Here we have "GALPon minino" another Linux distribution that is based on Debian and designed for computers older than 10 years or more. The distro comes with LXDE Desktop Environment and a set of applications that fulfills the day-to-day needs of the users without slowing down the machine.

    • Linux is about choice, control, and learning something new
      For me Linux is about choice, control, and learning something new. I think that's one reason it's not as "easy" for some people. Some prefer a mouse with just one button because there's less to confuse. Personally, I'd rather have a 20-button mouse for more flexibility and spend two hours making it work my way. And yes, I run Gnome 3 because I like it, not because I have to.

    • System76 Releases The Wild Dog Pro, Their First Skylake Linux PC
      Our friends at System76 today announced the release of their first Skylake system. This first computer using Intel's latest-generation processors is a desktop that's part of the Wild Dog Pro family.

      The new System76 Wild Dog Pro features a Skylake CPU with options for a Core i5 or i7, Intel HD Graphics 530 or NVIDIA graphics up through a GeForce GTX 980, up to 64GB of DDR4 memory, and SSD options.

    • System76 unveils Skylake-powered Wild Dog Pro with Ubuntu Linux 15.10 'Wily Werewolf'
      Linux-based operating systems are wonderful for many reasons, such as being lightweight and secure. One of my favorite aspects, however, is the open and customizable nature. Ubuntu, for example, is one of the best operating systems, but if you do not like the default Unity environment, you can simply choose another -- not so with Windows or OS X.

    • System76 Launches Wild Dog Pro Powered by Ubuntu 15.10 and Intel Skylake
      System76 just revealed the new Ubuntu 15.10-powered Wild Dog Pro desktop with the 6th Generation Intel Core 'Skylake' processor is available in their stores.

  • Server

    • ONOS, ODL closer to cooperating on open source controller
      Two open source groups building separate software-defined networking (SDN) controllers are now part of the Linux Foundation, increasing the likelihood of cross-project collaboration.

      This week, the Open Networking Lab (ON.Lab) placed its Open Networking Operating System (ONOS) project under the foundation. ONOS developers are building a carrier-grade SDN open source controller.

    • Greater collaboration would be a boon for open networking projects
      With so many projects, though, it seems that eventually there will have to be some consolidation among the projects ... or at least an overall standard that everyone can agree on. Last week, ON.Lab's ONOS project was added to the ever-growing list of Linux Foundation projects. It joins several other open source networking projects that are Linux Foundation projects, including the OpenDaylight Project, OPNFV and IO Visor.

    • ONOS chief architect hopes to add clustering features over the next year
      Now a Linux Foundation project, the Open Network Operating System project is likely to attract more attention.

      On the CloudRouter Project's blog, Thomas Vachuska, ONOS's chief architect, indicated that since ON.Lab launched the open source software-defined networking project in December 2014, several collaborators and contributors have joined. The number is growing, he noted. It will probably do so more rapidly now that ONOS is a Linux Foundation project.

  • Kernel Space

    • Linux 4.3-rc6
      Things continue to be calm, and in fact have gotten progressively calmer. All of which makes me really happy, although my suspicious nature looks for things to blame. Are people just on their best behavior because the Kernel Summit is imminent, and everybody is putting their best foot forward?

      Or maybe this just ended up being one of those rare painless releases when nothing bad happens.

      That would be lovely.

    • Exclusive Interview: Max Ogden of HyperOS
      HyperOS is a nifty solution for those who want to run their own containerized environment on desktops or laptops for development purpose. HyperOS supports Linux, Mac, and soon Windows and is intended to be used primarily as a end-user CLI tool on workstations. We reached out to Max Ogden who leads the development team.

    • GROBR: a drama queen quits the Linux community

      Sharp, who had been maintainer of the USB 3.0 tree, came to prominence two years ago when she attacked Linux creator Linus Torvalds, who is also head of the kernel project, for his verbal attacks on other developers who erred in their coding. It turned out that she had planned this to perfection.

      The whole episode bears some re-examining, especially in light of the fact that since the 2013 exchange between Sharp and Torvalds, the latter has not spoken a word against anyone. The Linux Foundation, his employer, took note of the exchange by putting some curbs on him in the form of what it called a code of conflict which was merged into the kernel itself.

    • Media Advisory: Linux Foundation Releases Episode 2 in World Without Linux Series
      The Linux Foundation, the nonprofit organization dedicated to accelerating the growth of Linux and collaborative development, today announced the immediate release of episode 2 in its World Without Linux digital video series.

    • Graphics Stack

      • Intel minions create fast open source graphics
        Chipmaker Intel has set its minions the task of creating a high-performance software rasteriser for the Linux Mesa 3D Graphics Library.

        Mesa currently uses swrast, LLVMpipe, and Softpipe drivers as software rasterisers that run OpenGL on the CPU rather than any dedicated GPU. But apparently Intel’s minions have been developing a new, high-performance software rasteriser.

      • Intel Has Developed a Super Fast Linux Software Rasterizer Called OpenSWR
        Intel employees Tim Rowley and Bruce Cherniak have published a very intriguing announcement on the Mesa 3D Graphics Library development mailing list, informing us about their new software project developed within a small team at Intel.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments/WMs

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

      • KDE Plasma 5.5 Will Have a Quicklaunch Applet, New Bluetooth Devices KCM
        KDE developer David Rosca has published an interesting article on his blog to inform us all about the work he has done on the upcoming and highly anticipated KDE Plasma 5.5 desktop environment.

      • Some thoughts on the quality of Plasma 5
        Last week we got quite some criticism about the quality of KDE Plasma 5 on the Internet. This came rather surprising for us and is at least in my opinion highly undeserved. So far what we saw is that Plasma has a high quality – probably better than previous iterations of what was known as the KDE Desktop Environment – and got lots of praise for the state it is in. So how come that there is such a discrepancy between what we see and what our users see?

      • 19 Years of KDE History: Step by Step
        KDE – one of most functional desktop environment ever. It’s open source and free for use. 19 years ago, 14 october 1996 german programmer Matthias Ettrich has started a development of this beautiful environment. KDE provides the shell and many applications for everyday using. Today KDE uses the hundred thousand peoples over the world on Unix and Windows operating system. 19 years – serious age for software projects. Time to return and see how it begin.

    • GNOME Desktop/GTK

      • GNOME 3.20 Arrives on March 23, 2016, Here's the Full Release Schedule
        Now that GNOME 3.18 has been introduced and it already has a first point release, and many of us GNU/Linux users are starting to upgrade our old GNOME 3.16 desktop environments to the new and improved version, the time has come to learn some information about the next major release, GNOME 3.20.

  • Distributions

    • Reviews

      • The friendly face of Linux Lite 2.6
        I greatly enjoyed my time with Linux Lite 2.6. The distribution does a lot of things well, is easy to set up and use and the project offers us a lot of beginner friendly documentation. Linux Lite provides a great balance of speed, user friendliness, features and stability.

        I like that Linux Lite manages to live up to its name by using few resources while still looking nice, the distribution manages to provide a stable base while shipping with up to date desktop applications and it offers good hardware support too. It is especially nice to see a distribution provide a control panel similar to the OpenMandriva Control Centre. This is one of the features I have most wanted to see adopted by distributions outside of the OpenMandriva family and it's nice to see Linux Lite take the lead on this one.

        Lite ships with a good deal of functionality, providing users with most of the desktop software they are likely to need without, I'm happy to report, bogging down the application menu with a lot of extras, I feel a good balance was struck with regards to the default applications. Plus, I like that Lite offers us multimedia support out of the box.

        Mostly, what I appreciated about Linux Lite was the distribution's sense of polish. I don't mean visually, though I did enjoy Lite's default look, I mean polish in the sense that the little details were addressed. Most distributions will have some small bugs or quirks or little annoyances. Perhaps too many notification messages or an application that won't launch or the software manager will not always run properly because PackageKit refuses to relinquish its lock on the package database. Linux Lite, by contrast, offered a smooth, pleasant experience. The one bug I ran into was with the system installer locking up when I attempted to use Btrfs as my root file system. Otherwise, I had a completely trouble-free experience with Lite. The documentation was helpful, the system was responsive, no applications crashed, there were no annoying notifications and the package manager worked as expected. I came away from my trial with Lite sharing the opinion that Linux Lite deserves more credit than it gets.

      • Liquid Lemur Linux Floats Fluid Desktop Design
        Developer Edward Snyder recently released the second alpha version of Liquid Lemur Linux 2.0. It offers a hybrid desktop experience that combines the Window Maker window manager with elements of the Xfce desktop.

    • New Releases

    • Arch Family

      • Manjaro 15.09 (Bellatrix) Receives One of the Biggest Updates So Far
        The developers of Manjaro 15.09 (Bellatrix) have issued yet another update for the operating system, and they say that it's one of the biggest ones made available so far. One look at the changelog makes it clear why that is the case.

      • 5 Ways to Make Arch Linux More Stable
        Arch Linux has a reputation for being unstable and hard to use. The distribution is bleeding edge, so its public perception is understandable. It is because of this fact that we’ve decided to compile a list of the top five ways to improve the stability of Arch.

    • Red Hat Family

    • Debian Family

      • Derivatives

        • Rescatux 0.40 Beta 1 Live CD Adds SELinux Support, Based on Debian 8 Jessie
          Adrian Raulete has informed Softpedia about the release of the first Beta build of his upcoming Rescatux 0.40 Live CD, which can be used for performing system administration tasks on both GNU/Linux and Windows PCs.

        • The status of the Devuan project, presented at Opennebula
          tomorrow our fellow VUA Alberto Zuin will be presenting Devuan at the OpenNebula conference 2015 in Barcelona...

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Ubuntu 15.10 (Wily Werewolf) Release Candidate Images Out Now
            Canonical has started seeding the RC (Release Candidate) ISO images of the anticipated Ubuntu 15.10 (Wily Werewolf) operating system to testers worldwide to hunt down the last remaining bugs for the October 22 release.

          • The First Malicious App Enters The Ubuntu Touch Store & Quickly Removed
            First malicious app entered the ubuntu touch app store If you're using Ubuntu Touch then this is for you. Recently the first malicious app has entered into the Ubuntu touch store by bypassing the security measurements. The app does some malicious activities and changes the default flash screen without any permission. Fortunately, the app called "test" has been quickly removed from the store after being noticed.

          • Attacker slips malware past Ubuntu Phone checks
            Canonical has issued a security advisory to all fifteen people who installed a particular Ubuntu Phone app.

            While its reach might be trivial, the bug itself was serious: someone worked out how to bypass checks that are supposed to protect the Ubuntu Phone operating system's single-click app installation process.

          • Ubuntu Touch OTA-7 Update Released, Brings Improved App Startup Times
            Canonical has announced that the latest OTA-7 update for Ubuntu Touch has been released, and users should start receiving the notifications. It's a phase system, and not everyone will be prompted at once to upgrade.

          • Canonical Prepares Ubuntu 15.10 Linux Open Source OS for Final Release
            Ubuntu 15.10, aptly code-named Wily Werewolf, will officially debut this week from Canonical, bringing with it a surprising number of new features. Here's what to expect in the newest version of the popular Linux-based open source operating system.

          • Ubuntu 15.10 Is Coming This Week & AMD's Catalyst Chokes On Its Kernel
            Ubuntu 15.10 is set to be released on Thursday, but those dependent upon the AMD Catalyst proprietary graphics driver for Linux gaming or the like might want to hold off on upgrading... While there is the latest Catalyst driver packaged and it's been patched to work against the Wily Werewolf's default Linux 4.2 kernel, it doesn't seem to work reliably.

          • Ubuntu UI Toolkit Updated to Help You Build and Design Apps for Ubuntu Phones
            Ubuntu community member Kevin Feyder has shared with us an update to the Ubuntu UI Toolkit, an open-source project designed from the ground up to help Ubuntu application developers and designers build and design apps for Ubuntu phones.

          • GPS Navigation App for Ubuntu Phones Has Just Become Amazing - Gallery
            After announcing at the end of August 2015 that the next major release of the uNav GPS navigation app for Ubuntu Phones would be amazing, Marcos Costales has had the pleasure of announcing the immediate availability of uNav 0.30.

          • AMD Radeon R9 290: Ubuntu 15.04 vs. 15.10 - Don't Expect Much Better Performance
            While thwarted by some open-source Radeon DRM issues, here are some Radeon R9 290 "Hawaii" graphics card benchmarks between Ubuntu 15.04 vs. 15.10 for those curious.

            In still working through a larger comparison and also now running into the lack of working AMD Catalyst support on Ubuntu 15.10, tonight to share are just some Radeon R9 290 "Hawaii" GPU numbers under Ubuntu 15.04 and Ubuntu 15.10 out-of-the-box.

          • Ubuntu Celebrates 11 Years Since "Warty Warthog" Release
            Just 11 short years ago, Mark Shuttleworth was announcing the release of Ubuntu 4.10 "The Warty Warthog." It changes the way people were using Linux distribution, and it's still to this day a force in the open source world.

          • Canonical Takes the Wraps Off Ubuntu 15.10 Linux Distro
            Canonical, the lead commercial sponsor behind the open-source Ubuntu Linux distribution, is set to debut its latest release on Oct. 22. Ubuntu 15.10, also referred to as the Wily Werewolf, follows the Ubuntu 15.04 Vivid Vervet release that debuted April 23. Ubuntu 15.10 includes an updated Firefox 41 Web browser, LibreOffice 5 office suite and other desktop tools. The desktop itself has been further refined for stability and performance to help improve the user experience. One of the only user-visible changes on the desktop is the use of Gnome overlay scroll bars, which provide a more streamlined approach to window scrolling in Ubuntu 15.10. On the server side, Ubuntu 15.10 now includes the new OpenStack Liberty cloud release that debuted last week. The LXD container hypervisor also gets a boost in the new Ubuntu 15.10 release, providing users with the ability to scale container deployments securely. Sitting underneath server and desktop editions of Ubuntu 15.10 is the Linux 4.2 kernel that Linus Torvalds unveiled on Aug. 30. Here's a look at key features in the Ubuntu 15.10 Linux distribution release.

          • Ubuntu 15.10 Is Going Through Final Testing
            Canonical is ready to release a new version of Ubuntu, 15.10, and it's doing some final testing. The new version should arrive in just a couple of days.

          • Canonical Explains Its Convergence Goals
            Canonical's converge goal has been a lofty one right from the start, but the company didn't fully explain what they really wanted with it. Their goals for convergence changed over the years, and only now they point out exactly what's this convergence all about.

          • Ubuntu 15.10 Now Supports Steam Controllers After Being Patched
            Ubuntu 15.10 will ship with support for the Steam Controller after the developers have fixed a couple of problems that prevented this particular device to work.

          • The Impact Of Switching To Linux 4.3 + Mesa-11.1/LLVM-3.8 On Ubuntu 15.10
            Yesterday I posted some performance results of a Radeon R9 290 tested on Ubuntu 15.04 and Ubuntu 15.10 out-of-the-box. In this article are some numbers when upgrading the Ubuntu 15.10 installation to use the non-standard Linux 4.3 Git kernel as well as Mesa 11.1-devel Git that's built against LLVM 3.8 SVN for the newest open-source AMD Linux experience.

          • Canonical Patches Two Linux Kernel Vulnerabilities in Ubuntu 12.04 LTS
            Canonical announced earlier today, October 20, that they've released updated kernel packages for the Ubuntu 12.04 LTS (Precise Pangolin) operating system, patching two security vulnerabilities.

          • Canonical Releases Important Security Patches for Ubuntu 15.04 and 14.04 LTS
            After announcing the general availability of a new kernel version of its Ubuntu 12.04 LTS (Precise Pangolin) operating system, Canonical published details about an important security patch for the kernel packages of Ubuntu 15.04 and Ubuntu 14.04 LTS.

          • Ubuntu Touch OTA-7 Fully Deployed, Developers Begin Work on OTA-8
            In the last hours of October 20, Canonical's Łukasz Zemczak sent in his daily report to inform us all about the things that happened in the Ubuntu Touch world since the release of the OTA-7 software update on October 19, 2015.

          • Ubuntu UI Toolkit Updated To Help Build Better User Interface
            Ubuntu community member Kevin Feyder recently shared an update regarding Ubuntu UI Toolkit, an open-source project designed from the ground up to facilitate Ubuntu application developers so they can best design and build apps for Ubuntu powered phones. The toolkit also has Suru Icon Template in it that allows users to create consistent icons for their Ubuntu phone apps.

            “If anyone is interested in building or designing for the Ubuntu phone. I just updated my vector ui toolkit. You can find it at: ,” said Kevin Feyder in a Google+ post.

            There are also the Ubuntu Ui Patterns, a set of Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG) images that help application developers create mockup layouts for the Ubuntu Phone, and Device Stickersheet, a collection of Ubuntu devices that help mocking the UI.

          • Ubuntu celebrates 11th birthday, looks ahead to smartphone/desktop convergence
            11 years ago the first version of Ubuntu was released: Ubuntu 4.10 Warty Warthog. Later this week Canonical will release Ubuntu 15.10 Wily Werewolf.

          • Ubuntu 15.10 Release Candidate Available For Final Bug Testing
            Canonical has started sending out Release Candidate ISO images of Ubuntu’s next iteration, the Wily Werewolf (version 15.10) to testers worldwide so they can find out the bugs and report back prior to the official October 22nd release date of the OS.

            Ubuntu 15.10 is currently in the Final Freeze stage of development, which means that the OS will not get any new features and updates, except for fixes for critical security vulnerabilities and major bugs that might be discovered during the testing period of the Release Candidate images.

          • Ubuntu Phone Faces First Security Attack against Open Source Mobile OS
            Ubuntu Phone, the open source mobile OS from Canonical, has suffered its first security vulnerability in the form of an attack that gave hackers root access to Ubuntu-based smartphones.

          • Ubuntu to-do list
            EVERY time I install a new version of Ubuntu, I go through the same routine of installing extra programs that give me the convenience and extra functionality I need on my home computer. I’ve not been terribly organized about it, however, and often end up doing a number of online searches each time to recall what it was I did to get those applications and utilities onto my machine.

          • Flavours and Variants

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Sonic Pi uses code to compose a dance party
      Sam Aaron is a live coder who considers programming a performance. He created Sonic Pi, an open source live coding synthesizer that lets people use code to compose and perform in classical and contemporary styles ranging from canons to dubstep. By day, Aaron works as a research associate at the University of Cambridge. By night, he codes music for people to dance to.

    • 5 Things Only a Raspberry Pi 2 Can Do
      The latest edition of the pint-sized computer is awesome. It’s faster, bolder, and comes with a souped-up CPU and double the RAM. Simply put, it’s a significantly more capable machine. But you probably already knew that.

      The iterative nature of hardware releases means that each new arrival is inevitably faster and more powerful than what preceded it, but often without any meaningful difference. But the Raspberry Pi 2 is radically different. It can do a whole lot more than what preceded it.

    • Rugged, wireless-capable COM runs Linux on Sitara AM57x
      CompuLab unveiled a COM based on TI’s new Cortex-A15 based Sitara AM57x SoC, with options for onboard wireless, up to 32GB flash, and -40 to 85€°C operation.

      When it ships in December, CompuLab’s “CL-SOM-AM57x” computer-on-module will closely follow the BeagleBoard-X15 as one of the first embedded boards to integrate TI’s newly announced Sitara AM57x system-on-chip. Aimed at industrial automation and control IoT applications, the Linux-supported CL-SOM-AM57x COM is available with an optional “SB-SOM-AM57x” carrier board. The COM and carrier board are also available pre-integrated, as the “SBC-AM57x” sandwich-style single board computer (see farther below).

    • Raspberry Pi 2 doppelganger runs Linux on 1.8GHz Atom x5
      Aaeon launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund a Raspberry Pi form-factor “Up” SBC, that runs Linux and Android on a quad-core, 1.84GHz, Intel Atom x5 SoC.

      Embedded board maker Aaeon Europe, a subsidiary of Asus, went to Kickstarter to launch “Up” SBC with the same 85.6 x 56.5mm footprint, port layout, and expansion interface as the Raspberry Pi 2 Model B. Instead of a 900MHz Broadcom ARM SoC, however, the Up board features an x86-based Intel Atom x5-Z8300 system-on-chip from the 14nm Cherry Trail generation clocked to 1.33GHz or 1.84GHz.

    • Watch: Juju Status Flasher on Ubuntu Snappy Core with Raspberry Pi 2
      Matt Williams has shared with us a proof-of-concept project, which has been in the works for some time now and aims to help developers combine the power of the Juju orchestration tool with the innovative Ubuntu Snappy Core operating system.

    • Tiny Snapdragon 600 module includes WiFi, Bluetooth, GPS
      The tiny 50 x 28mm “Inforce 6401 Micro SOM” module runs Android 4.4 or Ubuntu on a Snapdragon 600 SoC, and offers built-in WiFi-ac, BT 4.0, and GPS/GLONASS.

      Inforce Computing’s “Inforce 6401” computer-on-module has the same 50 x 28mm footprint and many of the same features as its higher-end Inforce 6501 COM, which runs on a quad-core 2.7GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 805. The 6401 model instead adopts the Snapdragon 600 (formerly S4 Pro) SoC, which has enjoyed wide adoption in embedded circles.

    • DragonBox Pyra Linux Handheld Now Available To Pre-Order (video)
      First unveiled back in 2014 in its first edition, the latest version of the DragonBox Pyra Linux handheld gaming console is now available to pre-order price at €290 or roughly $330.

      Unfortunately the final price of the Linux handheld will be more than the pre-order deposit pricing but as yet has not been revealed by the systems developers.

    • PHYTEC Announces a New System-on-module (SOM) Based on the New Sitaraâ„¢ AM57x Processor Family from Texas Instruments

    • Phones

Free Software/Open Source

  • Open Source Tracked Robot Supports STEM in Africa
    We’d bet most Hackaday readers won’t need the software, anyway. The robot clearly uses RC servos for the drive and the little arm at the front, so controlling it directly from the Arduino ought to be easy enough. If you don’t want to roll your own, Senegal-based Azibot is taking preorders for kits for $99. We were a little surprised you couldn’t kick in a little more when you ordered to subsidize other kits for schools in need.

  • My Free and Open Source Photography Workflow
    After several years of trial and error, I finally have a complete RAW photography workflow in Linux that I am happy with.

    The applications in this workflow aren’t just native to Linux, they are also free, open source software (FOSS). There is no need to dual boot, use WINE or a virtual machine. It’s a pure FOSS photography workflow running in Linux.

  • Coinprism Launches Open Source Distributed Ledger
    lockchain technology company Coinprism has released Openchain, an open source, distributed permissioned ledger that targets enterprise and financial institutions.

  • Imply launches with $2M to commercialize the Druid open-source data store
    Some of the first few people to work on the Druid open-source data store are today launching a new startup, Imply, with $2 million in seed funding from Khosla Ventures.

    Think of this as the next big-data startup to spin out, in the vein of Hadoop-oriented Hortonworks (former Yahoo), Kafka startup Confluent (former LinkedIn), and Drill startup Dremio (former MapR). In this case, Imply is spinning out of advertising analytics startup Metamarkets.

  • Apache HTTP Server Adds HTTP/2 Support for Speed and Security
    Apache HTTP Server, the open source web server that controls around half of the market, has become the latest platform to support HTTP/2, a major security- and efficiency-focused revision of the protocol computers use to download information from the web.

  • AllSeen Alliance Adds Security Updates to Open Source IoT Platform
    The AllSeen Alliance claims to have made open source Internet of Things (IoT) development more secure with the latest update to its AllJoyn IoT framework, Security 2.0. The new feature brings authentication, device authorization and encryption enhancements to the platform.

  • Open Source Survey Cites Value
    Open source practices have been revolutionizing the way we build software for a while now. Besides providing a wealth of low-cost and well-built components, open source software has been the catalyst behind some of the most exciting new technology developments of our time: cloud computing, software-defined networking, online software delivery and more. Open source practices are also beginning to impact hardware engineering via initiatives such as the maker movement, 3D printing and low-cost platforms such as Arduino and Raspberry Pi.

  • The Impact of Netflix’s Open Source Software Development
    Much of Netflix’s success can be attributed to the open source environment that it has created for its products and services. Since Netflix began to realize the benefits of making its software available through open source, the company has released more than 50 projects for input on its Github page. And due to its open source preference, usage and success in code software development, Netflix has assisted in legitimizing open source as a powerful tool for many organizations.

  • Apple...Google...AllSeen Alliance: Is the Internet of Things Getting Fragmented?

  • AllSeen Alliance's IoT Framework Gets Major Security Enhancements

  • Walmart's cloud is open source for the wrong reasons
    Walmart Stores is entering into cloud computing ... kinda. Last week, Walmart announced it will open-source the cloud technology it has built up following its acquisition of OneOp about two years ago. (Walmart maintains a 2,000-person presence in Silicon Valley.) Walmart says it will upload the source code to GitHub by 2016.

    For Walmart, this is all about putting a dent in the growth of its major rival Amazon has been giving Walmart fits on the retail side for the last decade. Now Walmart is moving the battle to the cloud, with Walmart basically declaring that Amazon Web Services means cloud lock-in that enterprises can avoid if they use the open source Walmart technology instead.

  • Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) Plans To Open Source Its Cloud Management Platform
    There are serious cloud projects going on at Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT)’s WalmartLabs, and the company has indicated its willingness to freely share whatever it is cooking in the cloud. Wal-Mart intends to open source the cloud management technology that its WalmartLabs team in Silicon Valley is developing. With Wal-Mart involved in cloud publishing, disruption of cloud can be seen reaching far.

  • Affectio Societatis
    There is a mystery of sorts about the reasons people have (or think they have) to contribute to a Free and Open Source Software project. It seems very few people can explain it and it continues to puzzle everyone in the industry, the press and the governments alike.

  • Events

    • Tizen Developer Summit 2015 Bengaluru – Inaugural Keynote

    • Linaro Connect US '15
      One of the items that came out of Linux plumbers for me was discussion on the future of the Ion memory manager for Android. While not as relevant to my day to day work anymore, I still have a lot of background knowledge and input to give. Linaro Connect happened a little over a month after plumbers and I was up there for the week, mostly for Ion and other ARM talks. (Non-technically, being at Linaro Connect also meant I could avoid the chaos in my apartment from an impending move. Yay for convenient excuses!)

    • LinuxCon Europe 2015 in Dublin
      The second day was opened by Leigh Honeywell and she was talking about how to secure an Open Future. An interesting case study, she said, was Heartbleed. Researchers found that vulnerability and went through the appropriate vulnerability disclosure channels, but the information leaked although there was an embargo in place. In fact, the bug proofed to be exploited for a couple of months already. Microsoft, her former employer, had about ten years of a head start in developing a secure development life-cycle. The trick is, she said, to have plans in place in case of security vulnerabilities. You throw half of your plan away, anyway, but it’s good to have that practice of knowing who to talk to and all. She gave a few recommendations of which she thinks will enable us to write secure code. Coders should review, learn, and speak up if they feel uncomfortable with a piece of code. Managers could take up on what she called “smells” when people tend to be fearful about their code. Of course, MicroSoft’s SDL also contains many good practices. Her minimal set of practices is to have a self-assessment in place to determine if something needs security review, have an up-front threat modelling that is kept up to date as things evolve, have a security checklist like Mozilla’s or OWASP’s, and have security analysis built into CI process.

    • Second Round of systemd.conf 2015 Sponsors

  • SaaS/Big Data

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

    • UK Government Kicks Out Microsoft Office and Adopts LibreOffice
      The UK Government is looking to shed its dependency on proprietary software and entered into a new commercial deal with an open source software company Collabora Productivity that adapts LibreOffice for the use in enterprise environments.

    • Government Open Source Office deal set to provide major savings
      UK Government buyers have signed a new commercial deal for Open Source office applications on desktop, mobile, and cloud. The "Cloud Transition Agreement" between the Crown Commercial Service (CCS), an executive arm of the Cabinet Office, and British Open Source software firm Collabora Productivity, states the Government's commitment to Open Source and Open Document Format, and offers major cost savings for public sector bodies.

    • LibreOffice 5.1 Arrives in February 2016, First Bug Hunting Session Announced
      The Document Foundation, through Italo Vignoli, has had the great pleasure of announcing that the first bug hunting session for the upcoming LibreOffice 5.1 office suite will take place between October 30 and November 1, 2015.

    • Upcoming Features of LibreOffice 5.1
      We reported earlier that The Document Foundation non-profit organization announced the first bug hunting session for the upcoming LibreOffice 5.1 open-source office suite.

  • CMS

    • What's top of mind for a Drupal web developer at Georgia Tech
      That both open source and education have core commitments to sharing knowledge freely and to impacting the world for good through collaboration. We also share a similar challenge of how to encourage many small and unique contributions to a very large-scale project. There is some fascinating work going on in India to create social infrastructure in and around schools that makes Drupal knowledge and community easier to build and sustain.

  • BSD

    • An OpenBSD History Lesson to Mark the Open Source OS's 20th Birthday
      OpenBSD, the open source Unix-like operating system that today mostly lives in Linux's shadow, turns 20 this month. To mark the occasion, here's some historical background on one of the only major "open source" operating systems to have survived without embracing the GNU GPL license.

    • Deweloperzy OpenBSD: Vadim Zhukov
      I’m a 30 years old programmer/sysadmin with wide range of interests from Moscow, Russia. I’m working in IT industry for about half of my life, and last few years I’m also a freelance teacher at Moscow State University of Information Technologies, Radiotechnics and Electronics (ex. Moscow State Institute of Radio Engineering, Electronics and Automation). I have a daughter (best one in the world, of course), which was born at October, 18 – you may call this a Fate. :)

    • EuroBSDCon 2014 Videos Online
      No, that's not a typo; the videos for EuroBSDCon 2014 are finally online.

    • Deweloperzy OpenBSD: Ingo Schwarze
      Since 2001, so for almost three quarters of its history by now. Originally, it was pure chance. A coworker who used to run various Linux distributions repeatedly got his boxes rooted. Instead of properly securing them, he proposed to try OpenBSD. I said i didn’t care much which system he used. At that time, i was used to working on many different Unix and Unix-like systems (DEC OSF/1, Ultix, HP-UX, AIX, SuSE Linux, Debian GNU/Linux …) and OpenBSD looked like just another Unix-like system, so why not.

    • Linux Top 3: Robolinux 8.2, Bodhi Linux and OpenBSD 5.8
      Lots of changes debut in the new OpenBSD 5.8 release including some interesting security updates.

    • Microsoft taps open source LLVM compiler for cross-platform .Net
      Consider the LLILC project. Rather than reinvent the wheel, Microsoft's new compiler for its CoreCLR .Net runtime leverages an existing cross-platform compiler framework: LLVM. Now six months into the project, its maintainers -- a foundation comprised largely but not exclusively of folks from Microsoft -- reports "great progress" with LLILC, but also "much still to do."


  • Public Services/Government

    • France’s citizens vote in favour of open source
      France’s citizens are in favour of their public administrations’ use of free and open source software. France should also implement this type of software in education, according to the results of a public consultation on France’s Digital Republic bill (La République numérique). After twenty days of public debate and voting on proposals, the consultation ended on Sunday. La République numérique - the Digital Republic - drew 147,710 votes, received 8501 proposals and attracted 21,330 participants.

  • Openness/Sharing

    • Spain shares database model of school student records
      Spain’s Ministry of Education has made public a database model for school student records. By sharing the technical specifications for storing and querying the student records, the ministry is encouraging the interoperability of software solutions.

    • Open Data

      • Governments should open APIs to core services
        Governments should build or help build application programming interfaces (APIs) to their core eGovernment services, says Kimmo Mäkinen, development manager at Finland’s Ministry of Finance. “We must offer an open API’s for software developers, not just the end-user interface”, he said.

    • Open Access/Content

      • InFocus: Should NIU adopt an open-source textbook program?
        The Affordable College Textbook Act, a bill reintroduced by U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Illinois) on Oct. 8, would encourage universities to support pilot programs that create digital and print open-source textbooks. Universities participating in the programs would be required to create digital educational resources that would be printable and available free of charge, according to the act.

      • Letter: Open source textbooks can combat rising prices
        My name is Meghan Healey. I’m an undeclared freshman. Being on this exploratory track, most of my textbooks were relatively cheap, but they were still more expensive than they should be. If all textbooks were as “cheap” as my American Politics class, students would still have to pay at least $150 in order to have a proper education. This $150 could have been spent toward my tuition, my meal plan, or a plentiful amount of other academic expenses. Geology Textbook: $50. Environmental Science Packet: $30. Sustainability Book: $10. Freshman Seminar: $20. iClicker 2 for American Politics: $60. American Politics Textbook: $90 My total? $260. What should it be? Priceless.

    • Open Hardware

      • Ultimaker Releases Open Source Files for Ultimaker 2 Go and Extended
        For Dutch 3D printer manufacturer Ultimaker, being open sourced has been part of who the company was since the very beginning, and their early success can easily be traced directly back to their loyal community of users. Their first 3D printer, the Ultimaker Original, was already a great 3D printer and remains (despite being four years old) one of the most reliable 3D printers available today. And from the very beginning Ultimaker has encouraged their community to help them make the Original better, and they certainly have. In fact, many of the improvements created by the community for their personal Originals were implemented into their next 3D printer, the Ultimaker 2 and the resulting Ultimaker 2 family of 3D printers.

  • Programming

    • File::Slurp is broken and wrong
      If your needs are average (which is the case for most people), I'd recommend Path::Tiny. This provides a well-balanced set of functions for dealing with file paths and contents.


  • Steve Ballmer Says He Owns 4% Stake in Twitter
    Former Microsoft Corp. Chief Executive Officer Steve Ballmer has acquired a 4 percent stake in Twitter Inc., giving him a bigger holding than the social-media company’s new CEO, Jack Dorsey.

    “Glad I bought 4% past few months,” the owner of the Los Angeles Clippers basketball team tweeted Friday. He praised Dorsey, who was appointed last week, for making the company “leaner, more focused.”

  • Steve Ballmer Buys Into Twitter
    In a tweet sent on Thursday evening, Mr. Ballmer, the former chief executive of Microsoft, said he had acquired a 4 percent stake in Twitter, becoming one of the single-largest outside shareholders of the company. He also praised one of the company’s new products, Moments, which organizes tweets on specific topics.

  • Northern EU leaders to discuss government modernisation
    Iceland’s Prime Minister Sigmundur Davið Gunnlaugsson has invited his colleagues from the Nordic countries, the Baltic states and the United Kingdom to discuss government modernisation. The Northern Future Forum is to take place in Reykjavík on 28 and 29 October and will focus on simpler, smarter and innovative public services.

  • Hardware

    • Good luck repairing anything in the new iMac
      If you've read our review of the new iMac, you already know that a majority of what's really new about Apple's latest all-in-one is its accessories. The destructive folks over at iFixit say that the 21.5-inch model has what "looks like" an LG ultra-HD display and a Texas Instruments chip, while the fan and HDD are the same -- the speakers are too. The logic board is where the surprises come in, and they might not make you too happy. Configure a machine without flash storage or a Fusion Drive? You won't be able to add one at a later date because those don't include an onboard connector to do so.

    • Is Apple’s new 4K iMac a total ripoff?
      Apple delivered the 4K iMac many fans have been waiting for this week, but it’s not quite the all-in-one powerhouse some were expecting. Look past its beautiful design and you’ll find a lot of drawbacks you probably wouldn’t (and shouldn’t) expect to get with a $1,500 computer.

  • Security

    • Tuesday's security updates

    • Why Aren't There Better Cybersecurity Regulations for Medical Devices?
      This summer, the Food and Drug Administration warned hospitals to stop using a line of drug pumps because of a cybersecurity risk: a vulnerability that could allow an attacker to remotely deliver a fatal dose to a patient. SAINT Corporation engineer Jeremy Richards, one of the researchers who discovered the vulnerability, called the drug pump the “the least secure IP enabled device I’ve ever touched in my life.”

      There is a growing body of research that shows just how defenseless many critical medical devices are to cyberattack. Research over the last couple of years has revealed that hundreds of medical devices use hard-coded passwords. Other devices use default admin passwords, then warn hospitals in the documentation not to change them.

    • Congress Introduces Provision That Could Make Vehicle Security Research Illegal
      Far too often Congress proposes tech legislation that is either poorly researched or poorly drafted (or both). Fortunately, most of the bills don't advance. Unfortunately, this doesn’t seem to dissuade Congress from constantly writing these types of bills. The House Energy and Commerce Committee released such a bill last week. It's only a discussion draft and hasn't been introduced as a formal bill yet, but its provisions would not only effectively put the brakes on car security research, but also immunize auto manufactures from FTC privacy enforcement when (not if) they fail to secure our cars. It's a classic one-two punch from Congress: not understanding something and then deciding to draft a bill about it anyway.

    • Crypto researchers: Time to use something better than 1024-bit encryption
      It’s possible for entities with vast computing resources – such as the NSA and major national governments - to compromise commonly used Diffie-Hellman keys, and over time more groups will be able to afford cracking them as computing costs go down.

    • The first rule of zero-days is no one talks about zero-days (so we’ll explain)
      How do you defend yourself against the unknown? That is crux of the zero-day vulnerability: a software vulnerability that, by definition, is unknown by the user of the software and often its developer as well.

      Everything about the zero-day market, from research and discovery through disclosure and active exploitation, is predicated upon this fear of the unknown—a fear that has been amplified and distorted by the media. Is the world really at threat of destabilisation due to lone-wolf hackers digging up vulnerabilities in popular software packages and selling them to whichever repressive government offers the most money? Or is it just a classic case of the media and megacorp lobbyists focusing on the sexy, scary, offensive side of things, and glossing over the less alluring aspects?

    • List of Linux System Hardening Resources
      My recent post about how quickly newly commissioned Linux systems can be attacked and possibly compromised led to a bunch of e-mail queries about resources which explain how to lock down a variety of Linux distributions. Most such guides are distribution specific because, while the basic principles are always the same, there are significant differences between distributions and even versions of the same distribution that make writing a generic guide difficult at best.

  • Defence/Police/Secrecy/Aggression

    • A 'second Snowden' leaks to the Intercept about 'drone wars'
      The same reporters who received documents from former NSA worker Edward Snowden are now publishing information from a second governmental source.

    • A Second Snowden Has Leaked a Mother Lode of Drone Docs
      It’s been just over two years since Edward Snowden leaked a massive trove of NSA documents, and more than five since Chelsea Manning gave WikiLeaks a megacache of military and diplomatic secrets. Now there appears to be a new source on that scale of classified leaks—this time with a focus on drones.

    • Ramstein 'involved US drone programs,' says former US drone operator
      A former US drone operator says the US Ramstein airbase in Germany had a key role to play in US drone strikes. Brandon Bryant was answering questions from a parliamentary committee investigating the NSA.

    • Former US drone operator to get German whistleblower award
      A former U.S. Air Force drone sensor operator, who spoke to German media about Ramstein Air Base’s alleged role in the U.S. drone war, is one of two people being honored Friday with a biennial “whistleblower award” in Germany.

      Brandon Bryant and French molecular biologist Gilles-Eric Seralini, whose research showed the popular herbicide Roundup to be toxic to animals, will each receive a prize of 3,000 euros from the Federation of German Scientists and the German Section of the International Association of Lawyers Against Nuclear Arms. The awards were to be presented at a ceremony Friday in Karlsruhe.

    • The Oil Weapon: 42 Years After the OPEC Oil Embargo
      Forty-two years ago today, a series of events on the other side of the world culminated in the strategic and crippling use of oil as a political weapon. As a result, the United States entered into the most devastating economic recession to hit the nation since the Great Depression.

    • Pakistan seeks explanation from former defence minister who said Osama bin Laden was given shelter in the country
      A massive political storm has been stirred in Pakistan over former defence minister Chaudhry Ahmed Mukhtar's revelations that the top authorities in the country knew about the presence of Osama bin Laden. Former Pakistan president Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif are disturbed by the statements made by Chaudhry and the government has ordered an inquiry against him.

    • Ted Cruz's Closest Counselors Are Neocons
      There’s a lot about Ted Cruz that should worry constitutionalists considering voting for the senator in the presidential election of 2016.

      Recently, Infogram published brief but illuminating biographies of several of Cruz’s key foreign policy advisors. The information disclosed in these revelations could trouble many constitutionalists otherwise keen on the senator and who rely on him to restore the rule of law to the White House.

    • AP Interview: MSF says bombing of Afghan hospital no mistake
      The head of an international medical charity whose hospital in northern Afghanistan was destroyed in a U.S. airstrike says the “extensive, quite precise destruction” of the bombing raid casts doubt on American military assertions that it was a mistake.

      The Oct. 3 attack on the compound in Kunduz city, which killed at least 22 patients and hospital staff, should be investigated as a possible war crime, said Christopher Stokes, general director of Doctors Without Borders, which is also known by its French abbreviation MSF.

    • Smoking gun emails reveal Blair's 'deal in blood' with George Bush over Iraq war was forged a YEAR before the invasion had even started
      A bombshell White House memo has revealed for the first time details of the ‘deal in blood’ forged by Tony Blair and George Bush over the Iraq War.

      The sensational leak shows that Blair had given an unqualified pledge to sign up to the conflict a year before the invasion started.

      It flies in the face of the Prime Minister’s public claims at the time that he was seeking a diplomatic solution to the crisis.

      He told voters: ‘We’re not proposing military action’ – in direct contrast to what the secret email now reveals.

    • Butt dials behind surge in 911 calls
      When San Francisco’s Department of Emergency Management realized that the number of 911 calls coming in had been dramatically increasing since 2011 -- straining staff and city resources, and potentially creating dangerous delays for callers -- officials wanted to find out why.

    • Terror offenders to be barred from working with children under David Cameron's new counter-terror strategy
      New counter-extremism strategy will see people convicted of terrorism treated like sex offenders to protect young people

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

    • Fact checking the first Democratic debate
      CNN aired the first Democratic presidential debate Tuesday featuring five candidates, including former secretary of state Hillary Rodham Clinton and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.).

      Not every candidate uttered facts that are easily fact checked, but following is a list of 13 suspicious or interesting claims. As is our practice, we do not award Pinocchios when we do a roundup of facts in debates.

    • Fox News Gets Suckered: 11 Outrageous Lies by Their 'Terror Analyst' Who Was Actually a Con Man
      Con artist Wayne Simmons created an elaborate life story. It is fake. He identified as a CIA outside paramilitary special operations officer. He wasn’t. He wrote a book claiming he worked in the CIA for 27 years. He didn’t.

      Fox News took him at his word. So did the U.S. government. Simmons worked as a subcontractor for the government multiple times, and was even invited to train at an Army facility. He ended up receiving security clearance and served as an intelligence advisor to senior military personnel overseas. So much for background checks.

    • 6 signs the new Hillary is still the old Hillary
      During Tuesday’s Democratic debate, Hillary Clinton tried to display a new and more progressive version of the Hillary who Americans have seen for years: as First Lady, U.S. Senator, 2008 presidential candidate and Secretary of State.

    • If Larry Lessig is elected president, and campaign reforms pass, he won’t resign
      Lawrence Lessig, one of the country’s foremost tech legal scholars, announced Saturday that he would be making a key modification to his quixotic campaign for president.

      If elected, the Harvard Law professor would plan to stay on as president—rather than resign immediately (as he had previously promised) after the passage of his as-yet-undrafted Citizen Equality Act. The bill would be designed to increase voting access, end partisan gerrymandering, and reform campaign finance, among other reforms.

      Why the change?

    • Larry Lessig Dumps His Promise To Resign The Presidency In An Attempt To Get People To Take His Campaign Seriously
      We've written a few times about Larry Lessig's somewhat wacky campaign for President, which was premised on the idea that it was a "referendum" campaign, where his entire focus would be to push Congress into putting in place serious campaign finance reform and then resigning from the Presidency. As we noted, the whole thing was a bit of a gimmick. And apparently that gimmick hasn't been working too well. Earlier this month, Lessig noted that he was being shut out from the Democratic debates, despite being a Democrat running for President and polling roughly on par with a few of the other nobodies in the campaign. The problem is that the Democratic National Committee apparently chose to ignore the campaign and because it refused to officially "welcome" him to the campaign, pollsters aren't including him and thus he didn't have enough polling data to be invited to the debate.

  • Privacy

    • Germany's intelligence community allegedly spied on friendly states

    • German spy scandal deepens
      The German intelligence service has spied on European and American embassies in ways that may have been beyond its mandate, German media ARD and Spiegel Online reported on Wednesday (14 October).

    • German intelligence service accused in new espionage scandal
      Germany’s intelligence service, already accused of spying on behalf of Washington, allegedly took the initiative of spying for several other allied countries, such as France and the United States, reveal German media on Thursday.

    • Germany’s BND spied on allies: Report
      – Der Spiegel claims German secret service BND carried out digital surveillance targeting friendly nations, including France and US

    • Germany Surveillance Scandal 2015: US, France Spied On Illegally By Intelligence Agency BND
    • Spiegel Online reported that the Germany’s Federal Intelligence Agency (BND) spied on EU institutions and France and the US
      BND embroiled in another scandal as Spiegel Online reported that Germany’s intelligence agency was spying on EU institutions, France and the US until late 2013, on its own and not on behalf of the NSA.

    • Germany spied on USA, France until late 2013
      Spies at Germany's BND foreign intelligence service snooped on the communications of friendly states' embassies and government offices, including EU members and the USA, as recently as 2013, media reports claimed on Wednesday.
    • Germany's secret services 'spied on France, US'
      Germany's secret service, already under fire for having allegedly spied for Washington, had also spied for its own account on allies including France, German media claimed Thursday.

    • Has the NSA balkanized the cloud market?
      Much of Canadian data stays in Canada, German data in Germany. Data can't be carted over the borders into that skanky NSA-monitored data sieve called the USA.
    • EU Court Declares NSA Surveillance Illegal
      As expected, the European Union court has thrown out an agreement, forged in 2000, that allows virtually uninhibited data sharing and transfer between the United States and EU countries and is the legal basis for National Security Agency’s on-line surveillance and data capture programs.

    • Private NSA Army is Attacking YOU!
      They are freelancers with no oversight or rules. They are only accountable to themselves and their employers. These freelancers thrive on their ability to remain hidden from the public eye. In reality, they could be your socially inept, angry neighbor down the street who is afraid of their own shadow in person. But give them a keyboard and they’ll take your job, your bank account and your freedom.
    • First Firms Blocked Porn. Now They Scan for Child Sex Images
      The first alarm came within a week. It meant an Ericsson AB employee had used a company computer to view images categorized by law enforcement as child sexual abuse.

      “It was faster than we would have wanted,” says Nina Macpherson, Ericsson’s chief legal officer.

      In a bid to ensure none of its 114,000 staff worldwide were using company equipment to view illegal content, in 2011 the Swedish mobile networks pioneer installed scanning software from Netclean Technologies AB. While many companies since then have adopted similar measures, few have been willing to discuss their experience publicly.

    • IAB: It's time to tackle the web advertising elephant in the room
      THE INTERACTIVE ADVERTISING BUREAU (IAB), which ought to know about these things, has said that online advertising has failed the consumer and needs a rethink.

      The alarm has been sounded at a time when ad blocking is high on the news and public agendas. The sometimes controversial issue of ad blocking is a relevant topic at publishing houses large and small, and the IAB, the organisation created to concern itself with the medium and the message, is on the case.

      "Through our pursuit of further automation and maximisation of margins during the industrial age of media technology, we built advertising technology to optimise publishers' yield of marketing budgets that had eroded after the last recession," the IAB said in a bold statement about its Lean Ads programme.
    • Lawrence Lessig interviewed Edward Snowden a year ago
      Last year, US president candidate in the Democratic Party Lawrence interviewed Edward Snowden. The one hour interview was published by Harvard Law School 2014-10-23 on Youtube, and the meeting took place 2014-10-20.

    • Users complain Facebook is causing iPhone batteries to drain
      Facebook’s iPhone app is consuming large amounts of battery charge even when it is not open, users have complained.

      Users say the app records long periods of background activity, even when settings such as background refresh are disabled.

      One user, product developer Matt Galligan, wrote that the Facebook app was not “sleeping properly when I hit the home button” and that the “problem may not be an easy fix for Facebook and the way their app is built”.

      Analysis of the Facebook app by iOS developer Jonathan Zdziarski indicated that Facebook’s location tracking of users could be at least partially to blame for the battery drain.
    • Security News This Week: The NYPD Doesn’t Want You to Know About Its X-Ray Spy Vans
      This week we found out that as many as 90 percent of people killed by US drones weren’t the intended targets, thanks to a ‘second Snowden’ who leaked a motherload of documents to The Intercept. The Democratic presidential candidates discussed Edward Snowden during the Democratic presidential debate, but only long-shot candidate Lincoln Chafee said he would welcome him home without any charges. French hackers showed they can remotely take control of Siri and Google Now by using radio waves from as far as 16 feet away. We took a look at the many ways cops could hack into your iPhone even without a backdoor. It’s not all bad news, though: Tech companies like Apple may have a new legal defense for resisting the government’s orders to unlock devices.

      And that’s not all. Each Saturday we round up the news stories that we didn’t break or cover in depth at WIRED, but which deserve your attention nonetheless. As always, click on the headlines to read the full story in each link posted. And stay safe out there!

    • Facebook warns users of potential state-sponsored attacks
      Facebook will now warn people if it has a strong suspicion an account is being targeted by a nation-state.
    • What America Fears
      Chapman University has just come out with its second annual Survey of American Fears, and while you don't want to read too much into the rankings—the vast array of fear-producing stimuli means we're inevitably comparing apples and oranges, if not elephants and elevators—the answers are revealing.


      What to make of that list? For one thing, the survey of 1,500 American adults (which was designed to reflect the population as a whole) confirms the truism that we have a strong distrust of government. Note that fear of corrupt public servants tops the list, with 58 percent of respondents saying they were either afraid or very afraid of this phenomenon.


      Fear of a terrorist attack has apparently waned in the years since 9/11. Although high on the list (at number four), only 44.4 percent of respondents said they were afraid or very afraid of such an event.

    • German parliament okays law to store telephone and Internet data
      German telecom companies will be obliged to keep telephone and Internet data for up to 10 weeks to help fight crime under a new law passed by parliament on Friday after a long political wrangle over possible infringements of individuals' rights.

      Under the data retention law, companies will be required to keep data on the timing and duration of telephone calls, as well as online traffic through IP addresses. Location data from mobile phones may only be stored for four weeks.
    • Third Circuit to the City of New York: Being Muslim is not Reasonable Suspicion for Surveillance
      Being Muslim can’t be the basis for law enforcement surveillance. That was the message from the Third Circuit on Tuesday when it told the plaintiffs in Hassan v. The City of New York that their lawsuit could go forward. The plaintiffs are suing over the New York Police Department’s suspicionless mass surveillance operation revealed by the Associated Press in 2011.

    • LINE Messenger Adds End-To-End Encryption
      Online privacy is a really delicate topic, especially after various reports revealed how the NSA and other governments have been spying on users all over the internet. We use instant messaging every day and for most of us concerned about our privacy, an encrypted messaging systems are very much welcomed. LINE is one of the most popular messaging systems out there and, although not the first one, the Japanese company has just announced a new feature called Letter Sealing to further protect messages as they are being sent. If you are asking yourself, “Letter sealing? What?”, this is like the seal kings would put on medieval times to send their letters somewhere – a bold name to End-To-End encryption technique.
    • Can You Hear Me Now? How Police Track Your Cellphone
      He took every step very carefully and made sure he covered his tracks. But on Aug. 3, 2008, Daniel Rigmaiden was arrested by the FBI near his apartment in northern California.

    • Six times Bernie Sanders showed his 'socialist' street cred
      Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders did not mince words at the first Democratic debate in Las Vegas, where he talked about Wall Street, NSA surveillance and climate change.

    • Scott Ludlam’s Top Five Tips On Dodging Tomorrow’s Data Retention Laws
      With data retention laws about to kick in, New Matilda speaks to its major parliamentary opponent about what it means for online freedoms and how to beat the system. Max Chalmers reports.
    • Congress Should Declassify the Legislative Negotiations Over the FISA Amendments Act
      On October 5, Third Way and the R Street Institute sent a joint request to the respective leaders of the House and Senate intelligence committees. The letter asks the committees to declassify records of the legislative negotiations leading up to passage (and subsequent reauthorization) of the FISA Amendments Act (FAA) of 2008.

    • Tech, cyber voices emerge in wide-open Speaker race
      Both support the Email Privacy Act, which would require law enforcement to obtain a warrant before accessing private email accounts.

      The bill has amassed over 300 co-sponsors, but hasn’t come close to getting a floor vote.

      Chaffetz is also a co-sponsor of the GPS Act, which would force investigators to get a warrant when seeking electronic location data.
    • Manipulating Reality: Facebook is Listening to You
      One thing we have become all too used to is that our reality can be manipulated to create the appearance of something else entirely. Invading another country is defensive, rigged elections are passed off as democracy in action, more guns (or more nuclear weapons) ensure the peace, trade and foreign investment increase jobs at home. Orwellian logic has become commonplace.

    • This group is trying to convince the next Edward Snowden to blow the whistle
      We recently told you about the NSA's recent (and very weird) love notes being spread online. But there's a new organization called Intelexit that's not feeling the love at all.

      In fact, Intelexit's goal is to get intelligence workers - particularly those at the NSA - to quit their jobs. And, if they'd like to be whistleblowers like Edward Snowden, Intelexit will help with counseling, legal support and media planning.
    • The Hacking Quandary
      This summer, two different events affected two different worlds. First, Milan-based Hacking Team — a small group of programmers who customize malware to gather intelligence — was itself hacked, and more than 400GB of its internal data was leaked. A few days later, a South Korean intelligence officer who had been implementing tracking software killed himself, and his suicide note allegedly referred to Hacking Team. As a result, many professionals in software development and espionage are pondering their future.

    • The Chinese-US Anti-Spying Pact Yields Its First Results
    • US-China cyber espionage treaty 'will do nothing': FireEye boss
    • Europe vs. USA on privacy
    • Max Schrems Provides In-depth Analysis Of Safe Harbor Ruling
    • MPs' communications at risk of 'incidental collection'
    • GCHQ can spy on MPs' private communications
    • British Court Rules UK Politicians Are Fair Game for GCHQ Spies
    • GCHQ given green light to spy on MPs, court rules
    • Wilson Doctrine has 'no legal effect', tribunal rules
    • Court says UK politicians don't get protection from snooping

    • Cybersecurity in 1989: Looking Back at Cliff Stoll's Classic The Cuckoo's Egg
    • Take With a Pinch of Salt
      The second and more important thing is that Mr Lucas is an old-fashioned journalist who can be lumped into that group that is, not very flatteringly, called the Old Boys Club in the UK. Consequently he is friends with some CIA, NSA and GCHQ veterans, alludes to giving talks at such institutions, has blurbs for this book from a former US Secretary of Homeland Security and a former Director of GCHQ on the back. This obviously comes with all kinds of caveats particularly when the book is about subjects as political as cyber warfare and hacking. One of those caveats is his conspiracy theory, shared by many conservatives in the West, that Edward Snowden is a Russian spy which made him say, “If Snowden had approached me with these documents, I would have marched him down to Bow Street police station and asked them to arrest him”.

    • Korea monitors Google's privacy issue
      The nation's online communication watchdog is considering taking tough measures against Google which is suspected of leaking users' personal information to third parties.
    • Living in a data glass bowl
      "You are the data: You are the queries you ask, the addresses you provide, the emails you answer, the transactions you carry out, the conversations you have. There is an inexhaustible amount of data that we leave online, leaving us vulnerable to various threats," says Nikhil Pahwa of the internet watchdog Medianama.

    • We’ve Just Learned the Origins of Illegal Surveillance in the United States Go Back to the 1930s
      Half a century before either Edward Snowden or Chelsea Manning was born, American military codebreakers and U.S. telecommunications companies collaborated on a secret electronic surveillance program that, as newly declassified documents reveal, they knew to be illegal. The program, approved at the highest levels of the U.S. government, targeted messages sent by foreign embassies in Washington, DC, in the years leading up to World War II, and was dramatically expanded after the war.
    • Norman Solomon: Clinton's Debate Comments on Snowden "Give Hypocrisy a Bad Name"
      At Tuesday’s Democratic presidential debate, candidates offered differing views on what should happen to NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden for exposing illegal mass surveillance. "He stole very important information that has unfortunately fallen into a lot of the wrong hands," said front-runner Hillary Clinton. "So I don’t think he should be brought home without facing the music." The four other candidates expressed appreciation for Snowden’s leaks and said his exposure of wrongdoing should be taken into account. We get reaction from Norman Solomon, longtime activist and executive director of the Institute for Public Accuracy.

    • UN: lack of whistleblower protection has 'chilling' effect on exposing wrongdoing
      People who expose wrongdoing on national security and intelligence issues around the world are often given weak or no protection and are often subject to retaliation, creating a “chilling effect on people speaking out”, a United Nations report has found.
    • Europe has more privacy than U.S.

      U.S. law gives the National Security Agency a green light to collect a staggering amount of personal data from phone and Internet users around the world, most of whom aren’t even remotely connected to terrorists. This week, however, a European court said the NSA’s shotgun approach to surveillance violated Europeans’ privacy rights. And because the European Court of Justice has no jurisdiction over the NSA, it took out its displeasure on the Internet.
    • Government will no longer seek encrypted user data
      The Obama administration has backed down in its bitter dispute with Silicon Valley over the encryption of data on iPhones and other digital devices, concluding that it is not possible to give US law enforcement and intelligence agencies access to that information without creating an opening that China, Russia, cybercriminals, and terrorists could also exploit.

    • Administration Won't Seek Holes In Encryption... But That's Just THIS Administration

      I don't normally recommend Lawfare, seeing as it's generally filled with NSA apologia and has been known to host the complaints of FBI directors who apparently just don't have enough outlets for crypto-related spleen-venting. But Hoover Institute cyber-policy/security scholar Herb Lin makes a few good points about the administration's decision to brush that backdoor dirt off its shoulders.
    • Edward Snowden And Black Lives Matter Activist DeRay Mckesson Had A Great Dialogue About Surveillance
      NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden and Black Lives Matter activist DeRay Mckesson had a spirited discussion about their respective causes on Twitter Monday night, trading points on the relationship between police and state violence and surveillance.

    • Snowden keynote at Bard conference stresses privacy
      “Privacy isn't about something to hide, it's about something to lose,” Edward Snowden told attendees at the “Why Privacy Matters: What Do We Lose When We Lose Our Privacy?” conference hosted by the Hannah Arendt Center for Politics and Humanities at Bard College.

      Snowden, whose keynote delivered via satellite from Russia and was punctuated by applause, contended that the technology and apps being used today – even lunch cards on college campuses — especially those that use geolocation are creating “perfect records of private lives being aggregated and stored.”
    • MPs want govt to report on findings over NSA mass surveillance
      The parliamentary Intelligence Oversight Commission asked the government on Wednesday for a comprehensive briefing on its findings pertaining to the mass surveillance operation in which the US National Security Agency and its German counterpart BND allegedly also spied on Slovenian citizens between 2005 and 2008.

    • Mass surveillance: EU citizens' rights still in danger, MEPs say
      Too little has been done to ensure that citizens' rights are protected following revelations of electronic mass surveillance, say civil liberties MEPs in a resolution passed on Tuesday. They urge the Commission to come up immediately with alternatives to Safe Harbour, following the ruling by the European Court of Justice. They are also concerned about the surveillance laws in several EU countries.
    • Why Has a European Court Banned Sending Personal Data Across the Atlantic?
      In a decision on October 6 that was as shocking as it was predictable, the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) invalidated the U.S.-EU Safe Harbor for westward bound international transfers of personal data.

    • NSA Leak Exposes Truth About America’s Drones
      Between January 2012 and February 2013, the drone strikes in Northeastern Afghanistan killed 200 people, with only 35 of whom were intended targets. Nearly 90% of innocent lives were taken for the 10% of terrorists America wished to destroy.
    • Trust - in a system built in stone
      We need to gain distance from the state, even as we make claims. And the claims we make should serve a dual purpose.

    • Politicians panic after law change could leave them open to surveillance
      The world of politics is filled with people who many would consider to be out of touch with real life. All too often politicians are treated differently, and this has certainly been the case when it comes to NSA and GCHQ surveillance of phone and internet traffic. In the UK a court has ruled that a ban on intercepting politicians' communication is not valid.
    • Germany Confronts Deadly Result of Providing Metadata to NSA (Die Zeit, Germany)

      Bald, bearded, with tattooed arms and a T-shirt – Brandon Bryant appears out of place among the people in suits of the German Bundestag. On Thursday he testified before the NSA Committee [of Inquiry] about his earlier work with the U.S. Air Force, including his day-long observations from the air and killing people with Hellfire missiles; the "manhunt," as he called it.

      But it wasn't only Bryant's appearance that set him apart from the others in the hearing room. It was if reality were bursting forth into what is otherwise theoretical debate on surveillance and selectors, antennae signals and those who carry them. The 29-year-old Bryant was at the receiving end of all that government-collected data. He was the one to pull the trigger, making sure that missiles hit preselected targets identified through the use of secret service-collected surveillance.

    • Twitter v. NSA Lawsuit Appears at Last Gasp
      A federal judge said Tuesday that she will dismiss Twitter's lawsuit against the National Security Agency because of the "new landscape" created by legislation that limits government surveillance - but asked Twitter to amend its claims anyway.
    • A Penn prof co-wrote this paper that explains how the NSA could be breaking trillions of secure connections
      Penn professor Nadia Heninger, whom TechCrunch once dubbed “the Chuck Norris of the crypto world,” is one of 14 researchers behind a paper that’s making waves in the internet security community.

      The report, which won the prize for best paper at the this week’s ACM Conference on Computer and Communications Security, suggests a solution to what the authors called a “technical mystery.” If the rumors of the National Security Agency’s mass decryption powers are true, how is the agency doing it? The answer has to do with a flaw in a method of secure communication, as well as the NSA’s multi-billion-dollar budget.

    • A Penn prof co-wrote this paper that explains how the NSA could be breaking trillions of secure connections
    • How Soviets used IBM Selectric keyloggers to spy on US diplomats
      A National Security Agency memo that recently resurfaced a few years after it was first published contains a detailed analysis of what very possibly was the world's first keylogger—a 1970s bug that Soviet spies implanted in US diplomats' IBM Selectric typewriters to monitor classified letters and memos.

    • Athens knew of CIA, NSA involvement in 2004 wiretaps
      It was the morning of 9 March, 2005. Panayiotis Tsalikidis was heading to have coffee with his brother Costas in Kolonos, downtown Athens, before a meeting. As he entered the building, he heard his mother screaming: "Cut him down!"

      He entered the apartment and saw his brother's body hanging in front of the bathroom door. "I immediately called my wife and asked her to bring a high-definition camera so I could take some pictures on the spot, because I didn't believe it was a suicide," says Panayiotis today.
    • Cybersecurity expert urges government-business dialog
      When Keith Alexander arrived in Tampa in 1998 to take over as director of intelligence for U.S. Central Command, he spent the first six days walking around MacDill Air Force Base, checking out his new surroundings.

      “Then on the seventh day — and this isn’t biblical — but on the seventh day, al-Qaida bombed the two embassies, and it all went down hill after that and I never saw the sun again while I was here.”

    • Former NSA director calls for tighter cyber security at USF event
      When Sony pictures was hacked last year, it brought cyber attacks to the forefront. This is an issue that is growing with time.

      That’s why a cyber security conference at U-S-F is crucial in the fight against cyber attacks.
    • NSA's Former Head Lawyer on Snowden and Cybersecurity
      ...NSA's legal chief while the agency experienced the Snowden leaks and subsequent government surveillance debate.

    • Senate Pushes Forward With CISA As Internet Industry Pulls Its Support
      Despite the fact that most of the internet industry has recently come out against the ridiculous faux-cybersecurity bill CISA, the Senate today began the process of moving the bill forward with a debate. The arguments were pretty much what you'd expect. The supporters of the bill, such as Senators Dianne Feinstein and Richard Burr, went on and on about how the bill is "voluntary" and about various online hacks (none of which would have been stopped by CISA -- but apparently those details don't matter). Senator Ron Wyden responded by pointing to all the internet companies coming out against the bill, and saying (accurately) that they're doing so because they know the public no longer trusts many of those companies, and they don't want a bill that will almost certainly be used for further surveillance efforts.

    • Tech Industry Trade Groups Are Coming Out Against CISA. We Need Individual Companies To Do The Same
      As if “national security” weren’t enough, now Congress is trying to use “cybersecurity” as an excuse to chip away at our right to privacy—and it’s riding on the coattails of incidents like the Experian and OPM breaches. Once again for continuity, it bears repeating that the Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act (CISA) would not have stopped the recent high-profile security breaches.

    • Bernie Sanders Would ‘Absolutely’ End NSA’s Mass Telephone Surveillance
      “I’d shut down what exists right now [which] is that virtually every telephone call in this country ends up in a file at the NSA,” Sanders told CNN’s Anderson Cooper. “That is unacceptable to me.”

  • Civil Rights

    • You Think the NSA Is Bad? Meet Former CIA Director Allen Dulles.
      In a new book, David Talbot makes the case that the CIA head under Eisenhower and Kennedy may have been a psychopath.

    • What Do We Really Know About Osama bin Laden’s Death?

    • Foreign Office faces living wage row after cleaners claim they are dismissed over pay complaint
      The Government is facing a hypocrisy row over living wage targets after a group of Foreign Office cleaners claimed they were laid off for complaining about their pay packets.

    • Disciplinary investigation for FCO cleaners after pay appeal to Hammond

      Cleaners at the Foreign Office (FCO) have been put under disciplinary investigation after they sent a letter to Philip Hammond requesting to be paid the London Living Wage.

    • Mouth Wide Shut
      Barack Obama was, in 2008, the anti-torture candidate.

    • Forty years of whistleblowing: from anti-war activists to Snowden
      On March 8, 1971, eight anti-war activists burglarized an FBI office in Media, Pennsylvania. Documents stolen from the office exposed a secret counterintelligence program — COINTELPRO — which, among other things, gave federal agents the authority to conduct domestic surveillance on U.S. citizens, eerily similar to what Edward Snowden would reveal more than 40 years later. But unlike Snowden, the eight anti-war activists were never caught, and their identities remained a mystery for decades.

    • Wife of Missouri-born jailed ex-CIA whistleblower asks Obama for pardon
      The wife of a Missouri native and CIA whistleblower serving time in federal prison for leaking classified information is asking President Obama to pardon her husband, Jeffrey Sterling.

      In a press conference that included other CIA whistleblowers or their lawyers leveling allegations of a double standard involving former General David Petraeus and presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, St. Louis resident Holly Sterling said her husband was both the victim of an Obama administration "shrouded in mis-truth and secrecy," and the target of a prosecution based on race.
    • Washington Persecutes America’s Greatest Patriots
      John Kiriakou is an American patriot who informed us of the criminal behavior of illegal and immoral US “cloak and dagger” operations that were bringing dishonor to our country. His reward was to be called a “traitor” by the idiot conservative Republicans and sentenced to prison by the corrupt US government.

    • ANU academic Jacky Sutton dies in Turkey; colleagues, family unconvinced cause was suicide
      The colleague of an ANU academic found dead in Turkey has called for a full investigation into her friend's death, saying she is "unconvinced" the cause was suicide.

      The BBC is reporting that Jacky Sutton, 50, a former journalist from their newsroom, was found dead in a toilet in Istanbul's main airport on Saturday.

      Asked directly about Ms Sutton's death, the United Kingdom's Foreign and Commonwealth Office confirmed that a British National had died in Istanbul.
    • Bank’s severance deal requires IT workers to be on call for two years
      SunTrust Banks in Atlanta is laying off about 100 IT workers as it moves work offshore. But this layoff is unusual for what it is asking of the soon-to-be displaced workers: The bank's severance agreement requires terminated employees to remain available for two years to provide help if needed, including in-person assistance, and to do so without compensation.

      Many of the affected IT employees, who are now training their replacements, have years of experience and provide the highest levels of technical support. The proof of their ability may be in the severance requirement, which gives the bank a way to tap their expertise long after their departure.

    • Body Cameras Are Everywhere, But Recordings Remain Locked Up Tight
      All over the nation, police departments are deploying body cameras. But there's no guarantee the public will have any access to the footage. As Kimberly Kindy and Julie Tate of the Washington Post report, the ultimate goals of greater accountability and transparency are routinely being thwarted by law enforcement agencies.
    • Saudi prince avoids felony charges in sex assault case near Beverly Hills
      Los Angeles County prosecutors said Monday they will not file charges against a Saudi prince arrested on suspicion of sexual assault at a compound on the edge of Beverly Hills, citing insufficient evidence.

      Majed Abdulaziz Al-Saud, 29, was arrested last month after a female worker accused him of trying to force her to perform a sex act on him inside a Beverly Glen residence he was renting, police said. Police alleged there were multiple victims, and within days of Al-Saud’s arrest three women sued him in civil court.

      Although prosecutors said there was not enough evidence for felony charges, the case was referred to the L.A. city attorney’s office, which could charge him with a misdemeanor. Officials in that office said they would have to review the case before making any decisions.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality

    • Protecting the 97%
      Today’s wireless networks are sophisticated and complex, but what our customers want is simple – to access their information and entertainment with a simple click. To make this happen, we’ll continue to take a responsible and thoughtful approach in how we manage our network resources. Whether we’re adding capacity to a cell site, upgrading our network to deliver even faster speeds, or implementing today’s QoS technique, our goal is simple - to provide a great network experience to our customers.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • MPAA Asks Government to Facilitate Private Anti-Piracy Deals

        The MPAA has asked the U.S. Government for help in its efforts to reach private anti-piracy agreements with search engines, domain name registrars and hosting services. The Hollywood group believes that these three industries have shown "lagging progress" and should do more to deter online copyright infringement.

      • YouTube paywall looms

        Google is expected to announce this week that some YouTube videos will only be available to subscribers.

        It's no secret that YouTube is funding content development, putting some fairly serious money into projects involving its most popular talent.

        But according to Re/code, some of this new content will be revealed at a YouTube event on Wednesday 21 October (US time), and it will only be available to paying YouTube subscribers.

      • Language Matters: All The Copyright Lobby’s Subtleties
        We’ve discussed industrial protectionism and content vs container before. To wrap up the theme, I’d like to look at the more subtle points of lobbyist language, which are just as devious – if you copy them, you’re working against your own liberties.

        The copyright industry doesn’t just choose positive phrases to describe their specific “innovations”. They also try to establish sayings, phrases, and other combinations of words to make them uttered so often they become colloquilalisms, and yet, have very strong values embedded into them. This is very subtle, but just as important to understanding proper usage of the copyright monopoly, industrial protectionism, and digital restriction measures. It may not be those words that win the mindset, but the words in between – small words like left, right, black, and white.

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