Bonum Certa Men Certa

Links 4/10/2020: Nanonote 1.3.0, Magisk 21.0, GNU Operating System at Age 37



  • Leftovers

    • Vice Media Names First Global CMO: Marketing Veteran Nadja Bellan-White (EXCLUSIVE)

      Bellan-White, previously based in the U.K., will work from Vice’s Brooklyn headquarters and will report to CEO Nancy Dubuc. She starts at the end of October.

      With Bellan-White’s appointment, current Vice Media CMO Guy Slattery is leaving the company after nearly five years.



    • Hardware

      • A thought about the lifetimes of hard disks and solid state disks

        Some grumpy sysadmins will also consider it a feature that if you put a system in a closet and leave it there for five or ten years, it will probably die instead of hanging around as an ancient zombie full of outdated things. The downside of this is for 'industrial' computers that are embedded into larger systems (including in things like hospital machinery, which are infamous for still running their embedded computers with long-obsolete operating systems). Perhaps the hardware vendors will just vastly over-provision the SSDs and then hope for the best.

      • DT71 smart tweezers review – 3-in-1 tweezers, multimeter, and signal generator

        Earlier this year, I discovered a new (to me) category of devices that look useful for electronics projects with smart tweezers Colibri ST-5S that integrate an LCR meter and can help quickly identify SMD components. I also noted some cheaper, but bulky models selling on Aliexpress for $15 and up.

    • Health/Nutrition

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Security

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • Malicious Tor relays - post-analysis after two months

              As far as I can see, nothing will change/be implemented in the near future at the Torproject or Tor directory authority level.

            • Facebook Slams Netflix’s ‘The Social Dilemma’ as ‘Distorted’ and Sensationalist

              The social-media giant released a seven-point rebuttal Friday to the Netflix film, from director Jeff Orlowski, which debuted Sept. 9.

            • Former Chinese Diplomat Worked on TikTok Content Policy, FT Says

              A former Chinese government official decided what content should be allowed on TikTok, the Financial Times reported, citing two people close to the short-video app company.

            • A shameful security flaw could have let anyone access your Grindr account

              You would think a dating app that knows your sexuality and HIV status would take thorough precautions to keep that info protected, but Grindr has disappointed the world once again — this time, with a gobsmackingly egregious security vulnerability that could have let literally anyone who could guess your email address into your user account.

            • When you are a lawyer, what is confidential about a confidential settlement? [Ed: Lawyers talking about things being "confidential" when they don't even bother with encryption and don't know how to use any. If they become politicians, they pass laws that BAN encryption, giving massive powers to state thugs and oligarchy.]

              In the case of LVM Law Chambers LLC v Wan Hoe Keet [2020] SGCA 29, the court was asked whether it was proper for a law firm to act against the same counterparty in which earlier proceedings against that party had been resolved by a settlement agreement subject to confidentiality.

              The facts of the case are straightforward. The appellant had previously acted on behalf of a client who claimed to be a victim of the respondent’s Ponzi scheme. In that earlier case, the appellant concluded a settlement before trial and the case was dropped. When the appellant attempted to act against the respondent again on behalf of another client who also claimed to be a victim of the scheme, the respondents sought an injunction refraining them from doing so, arguing that the appellant was privy to confidential information which could be used to the respondents’ detriment.

              The court, both on first instance and on appeal, agreed that the appellant should be restrained from disclosing the terms of the settlement agreement. However, the appellate court declined to enjoin the law firm from acting in the subsequent case.

    • Defence/Aggression

    • Transparency/Investigative Reporting

      • Following Falsehoods: A Reporter’s Approach on QAnon

        The normie tipping point is a joke, but it speaks to one of the thorniest questions in modern journalism, specifically on this beat: When does the benefit of informing people about an emerging piece of misinformation outweigh the possible harms? It’s a hard balance to strike, and a judgment call every time. Give too much attention to a fringe conspiracy theory before it’s gone viral, and you might inadvertently end up amplifying it. Wait too long, and you allow it to spread to millions of people with no factual counterweight.

        With QAnon, it became clear to me earlier this year that we’d reached the normie tipping point. I was lurking in QAnon Facebook groups and watched them swell to hundreds of thousands of members. I was hearing from readers whose parents, friends and siblings had disappeared into an online QAnon bubble. The movement’s followers were committing real acts of violence and vandalism, and spreading dangerous misinformation about Covid-19.

    • Environment

      • US bans Malaysian palm oil producer over labor abuses

        Malaysian palm oil producer FGV Holdings Berhad vowed Thursday to “clear its name” after the United States banned imports of its palm oil over allegations of forced labor and other abuses.

        The U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s Office of Trade issued the ban order against FGV on Wednesday, saying it found indicators of forced labor, including concerns about children, along with other abuses such as physical and sexual violence.

        The action, announced a week after The Associated Press exposed major labor abuses in Malaysia’s palm oil industry, was triggered by a petition filed last year by nonprofit organizations.

      • Energy

        • Huge Machine Captures Energy From Ocean Waves

          AW-Energy hopes to plop its WaveRoller into the ocean next year, according to Greentech Media. Joining it are other companies like Sweden’s CorPower Ocean, which hopes to have wave energy generators operating by 2024.

          It’s an encouraging sign for the future of clean energy. But the industry will still face challenges, even against other renewables like solar and wind, which continue to drop in price.

    • Finance

      • Of the Rich, By the Rich, For the Rich

        "Our current situation is hardly novel, it is just the continuation of an unjust system built on a document of objective lies. 'All men' should have been replaced by 'some rich white men' and everything would have been a lot clearer."

      • ILO: 34 million jobs lost by the COVID-19 crisis in Latin America and the Caribbean

        At least 34 million jobs in Latin America and the Caribbean have been lost due to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a new report from the International Labour Organization.

        Countries need to adopt immediate strategies to address the labour crisis, which, the report says, could widen existing inequalities in the region.

        “We face an unprecedented challenge, that of rebuilding the region’s labour markets, which implies facing structural failures that have worsened with the pandemic, such as low productivity, high informality, and inequality of income and opportunities of decent work,” said Vinícius Pinheiro, Director of the ILO Regional Office for Latin America and the Caribbean.

        The second edition of the Labour Overview in times of COVID-19: Impacts on the labour market and income in Latin America and the Caribbean warns of “the drastic contraction of employment, hours worked and income.”

        It says that during this crisis “34 million workers lost their jobs (some temporarily)”, according to available information from nine countries that represent more than 80 per cent of the economically active population of the region. The employment rate reached 51.1 per cent in the first quarter, a reduction of 5.4 percentage points compared to the data for the same period of the previous year, which represents “a historical minimum value.”

      • California wavers on theme park opening rules amid pressure

        Gov. Gavin Newsom on Friday delayed new operating rules for theme parks such as Disneyland that have been closed since the beginning of the pandemic as tourism industry officials warned the state was set to lose more than $78 billion in travel related spending this year.

      • From Trump's taxes to virus: News moves at breakneck pace

        Remember the presidential debate? The revelation about how much President Donald Trump pays in taxes? The nomination of a new U.S. Supreme Court justice?

        They all happened within the past week. Then, just as quickly, they receded into memory with the revelation Friday that Trump had tested positive for COVID-19. News, substantial news, is rushing by at the speed of light.

        Memory more than full.

        “I don't know how many writers who were working on political melodramas have just deleted their files and opened up a bottle of Scotch,” said veteran journalist Jeff Greenfield.

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

    • Freedom of Information/Freedom of the Press

      • FBI Seized Legally Privileged Materials From Julian Assange After Arrest In Ecuador Embassy

        The FBI in the United Kingdom enlisted the Ecuador government’s help in seizing legally privileged materials from WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange after he was arrested and expelled from their embassy in London on April 11, 2019.According to Gareth Peirce, one of Assange’s attorneys, that day she “made immediate contact with the embassy in regard to legally privileged material, an issue of huge concern.” Assange wanted the material—in addition to “confidential medical data”—”identified and released to his lawyers.”“Repeated requests by telephone, email and recorded delivery mail were entirely ignored by the embassy,” and in testimony submitted during the final day of evidence in Assange’s extradition trial, the embassy has never responded.“One record of [Assange’s] entire archive” was effectively purloined, and without it, Peirce mentioned it has made putting together a defense in his extradition case more difficult because the initial allegations relate to communications, meetings, and events from 2010 and 2011.

        Proceedings in the evidentiary portion of Assange’s extradition trial concluded on October 1, and Judge Vanessa Baraitser announced she would rule on the request from the United States government on January 4, 2021.

      • Press Freedom Is Threatened by Biden and Trump; Julian Assange Must Be Freed

        The extradition hearing of Julian Assange in the United Kingdom concluded testimony this week and now awaits a decision by Judge Vanessa Baraitser. During the past four weeks, it became increasingly clear the United States does not have a valid case and the conditions warranting extradition were not met. It is also clear that were Julian Assange to be extradited to the United States, he would be punished severely and this would dramatically change the willingness of journalists and publishers around the world to do their job of informing the public about what governments are doing.

        Julian Assange must be freed for many reasons, not the least of which is that his right to a fair trial was denied. The hearing was opened with a request from the defense team for a delay until January because they had not been able to meet with Assange to provide information to him for his input and to prepare. They stated that Assange is the expert in this situation and they relied on his guidance. Defense further stated that new information was given to them without adequate time to review it. The judge denied the request and further restricted Assange’s participation by forcing him to sit in a glass box where he was isolated from his lawyers.

        During the hearing, in what was a harsh and restrictive environment where the US prosecutors bullied and maligned defense witnesses, the defense was able to establish that no crime was committed, that the case was purely political and that if extradited, Assange’s health and safety would be at risk.

        In creating Wikileaks and publishing information, Julian Assange was engaged in “journalistic behavior,” which is protected by the First Amendment that establishes freedom of the press. Assange did what every good investigative journalist does in seeking truthful information from sources. Many media outlets routinely provide tools for people to leak information and classified information is given to reporters regularly. Investigative journalists regularly press their sources for more information. This is part of the job and necessary for respecting the right of the public to be informed.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • Khashoggi’s Plan for Rights Group Realized

        Now, two years after his death at the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul, friends of Khashoggi have realized the journalist’s dream for a rights organization that holds Middle East governments to account and gives exiled journalists and activists a platform to speak openly about abuses.

        Khashoggi came up with the idea for Democracy for the Arab World Now (DAWN) in June 2018, a few months before his death. At a press conference Tuesday, members of the group emphasized the need for human rights protections in the Middle East and North Africa, and laid out plans to track abuses in the region.

        The organization will initially focus on governments that are allied to the United States — Saudi Arabia, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates — and will document how governments persecute dissenters and human rights advocates, DAWN’s executive director, Sarah Leah Whitson, said.

      • Louisville and beyond: Calls for reform on ‘no-knock’ police raids

        The use of “no-knock” or “knock-and-announce” warrants is legal but risky. While there’s no clear data, American police carry out 40,000 to 50,000 no-knock raids each year by some estimates.

        As the Breonna Taylor case in Louisville shows, one result can be tragic deaths in a country with both expansive gun rights and expansive police authority. These incidents – a real-time real-time clash over Second and Fourth Amendment rights – often leave no clear heroes or villains. Law enforcement and legislatures nationwide are now wondering whether gun rights can safely coexist with no-knock raids.

    • Digital Restrictions (DRM)

      • How to watch the MLB playoffs without cable

        If you have an over-the-air antenna and live within reach of your local Fox TV affiliate, you can catch the action without spending another dime when game 7 of the World Series starts at 8:08 p.m. Eastern time. Don’t live within range of your local Fox affiliate’s broadcast tower? No worries, you still have plenty of options.

    • Monopolies

      • Patents

        • Software Patents

          • UK High Court Denies DABUS Appeal

            On Monday 21 September, the UK High Court (Patents) delivered its judgment on the DABUS appeal, as previously reported here by Morgan Lewis.

      • Copyrights

        • Bond was the last straw: Regal and Cineworld will reportedly close all theaters in US and UK next week

          Variety reports that all 543 theaters in the US will be closed, which account for the chain’s 7,000+ screens in the region. The Sunday Times reports that it will close all 128 theaters in the UK and Ireland, too.

        • Megaupload Lawsuits Remain on Hold Until 2021, Or (Much) Later

          Nearly nine years after Megaupload was taken down, the lawsuits against the site and its founder Kim Dotcom are still pending. The criminal case in the US awaits the outcome of the New Zealand extradition process, and two civil cases filed by major record labels and movie companies will start even later. This week they were put on hold until April 2021, but they will likely start much later.

        • New Law Requires Google & Apple to Remove Pirate Apps or Face ISP Blocking

          Google, Apple and other Internet platforms that offer copyright-infringing movie, TV show and music apps, face the possibility of being blocked by ISPs in Russia after a new law came into effect this week. The draconian measure will only come into play if sites offering pirate apps fail to quickly comply with copyright complaints filed by local telecoms watchdog Roscomnadzor.



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