10.04.10

Links 4/10/2010: Codenames Needed for Fedora 15 , Linux-based Palm ‘Mansion’ Rumoured

Posted in News Roundup at 7:53 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Penguins Old, Penguins New, Penguins Battered and Penguins Blue

    The canton, in fact, “should fire those and hire more flexible people,” Pogson suggested. “Seriously, why would an employer tolerate insubordination? There are thousands of people ready, willing and able to work with GNU/Linux.

    “If GNU/Linux gives the canton the efficiency and performance it needs, why should employees be allowed to say, ‘No’?” he added. “That would not be tolerated in any place where I have worked.”

    At Pogson’s current employer, “we brought in GNU/Linux with little fanfare, just swapping it for dead/dying XP machines, and there has been no fuss at all,” he noted. “Why are the canton’s employees different — or is that just hype by the media to sell papers?”

  • 20 Reasons Linux Will Boom in a Post-Recession World

    1) Total cost of ownership – Despite what the marketing material from select proprietary software companies might like you to believe, the software provided by proprietary vendors comes at a cost. There’s something to be said for having the ability to control the cost of your data and the software that runs it.

    By using Linux, one can be assured that the future of any projects enabled by this open source solution will be in firm control of those who are running the controls. No faceless company is going to come along and suddenly change the rules as to how you run your projects or how their software can be used. With Linux based options in your arsenal, you’re in control of your data. From beginning to end, you have control over how much or how little your company spends on Linux solutions.
    2) Updates are automatic – For many desktop Linux users, it’s something that we often take for granted. When we go to update our desktop operating system, we also have the option to update the software installed on our system as well…automatically. 1

  • Linux Magazine Celebrates 10-Year Anniversary

    Prize drawing for a free 10-year subscription — Linux Magazine celebrates its 10-year anniversary with the November 2010 issue, which includes a free archive DVD with a complete library of all previous issues.

  • Kernel Space

    • Graphics Stack

      • Geek Time with Ric Wheeler

        Ric Wheeler is the File System Group Manager at Red Hat, and Jeremy Allison caught up with him at LinuxCon in Sao Paulo, Brazil earlier this month. Ric tells Jeremy how he got into file system development as a grad student, then how he progressed into building storage arrays, eventually becoming a Linux advocate. From there, Jeremy and Ric talk about the direction that Linux is headed and the future of desktop computing. At the very end of the video, you can even hear about Ric’s brush with Hollywood!

  • Applications

    • CloudSN: Google Reader, Identi.ca, Facebook Or Any RSS Feed Notifier (And More) With Messaging Menu Integration

      CloudSN (Cloud Services Notifications) is an application similar to Specto (which is not maintained anymore): it can display notifications when you have new emails (POP3 and IMAP), new Identi.ca messages, Google Reader unread items or it can watch any RSS feed for changes. It used to also work with Twitter but since Twitter introduced OAuth for all apps, CloudSN stopped working with Twitter (hopefully it will be fixed soon).

    • Improve Your Linux Desktop Experience with a Dock

      One of the best features of Linux is its flexibility, and nowhere is that more obvious than the desktop. Your Linux desktop can have the look and feel of any desktop environment you want. One reason for this flexibility is the ability to add and remove small applications to better the desktop experience, like desktop docks Cairo-Dock and Avant Window Navigator.

    • DockBarX Gets Closer To Version 0.40 Stable (DockBarX 0.39.8 aka 0.40 RC, Released)

      DockBarX is a taskbar with grouping and group manipulation which works as an applet for both the GNOME Panel and Avant Window Navigator. DockBarX 0.39.8 (codename 0.40 release candidate) has just been released, bringing 2 changes:

      * The tooltip for pinned programs with no open windows shows name and description now, just as normal Gnome launchers do.
      * The width of the window list frame is slightly smaller.

    • Instructionals/Technical

    • Games

      • Addictive Linux Game ‘Steel Storm’ Released

        Arcade shooter game Steel Storm Episode 1 version 1.0 is released which was only available as beta until now. The game is quite addictive with fast paced action that wants you to annihilate hordes of enemies . Episode 1 is available as free download for Linux, Mac and Windows users.

  • Desktop Environments

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC)

    • GNOME Desktop

      • Give a helping hand to a fellow Linux user in need

        This is a bit atypical for OMG! Ubuntu! but this morning Bryen Yuko Yunashko, also known as suseROCKS, reported that he was robbed for many valuable gadgets during his travels in Europe. As a user Bryan has dedicated much of his life to raising awareness of accessibility in technology, and this theft has robbed him not only of valuable data but of the tools he uses to increase his quality of life given his disability.

  • Distributions

    • Open Ballot: is Graham Morrison wrong?

      Our kid Graham has had a rough time of it on the internet recently. His article for our sister site TechRadar, “The trouble with Linux: there’s too much choice”, sparked off a few flamewars. Most notably, Caitlyn Martin over on the O’Reilly blog delivered a no-minced-words response: “Are you intimidated by breakfast cereal?”.

    • Red Hat Family

    • Debian Family

      • Can Debian offer a Constantly Usable Testing distribution?

        The rolling distribution is certainly a good idea but the rules governing it must be designed to avoid any conflict with the process of releasing a stable distribution. Lastly, the mere existence of rolling would finally fix the marketing problem plaguing testing: the name “rolling” does not suggest that the software is not yet ready for prime time.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Phones

      • Palm planning keyboard-less ‘Mansion’ with 800 x 480 screen?

        This one is still very much a rumor, but PreCentral is reporting that it’s heard from a “very reliable tipster” who says that Palm is prepping a new phone codenamed “Mansion,” which may or may not be the same device that recently turned up in a certification database under the name P102.

      • Android

        • Amazon building its own Android App Market?

          The current Android Market — actually Markets, since several carriers have customized it to their own ends — have a long way to go to match the customer and seller experience of iOs. Amazon knows ecommerce better than just about anybody, and the kind of collective intelligence filtering they brought to books would be a big leap forward for app discovery. But I’d caution developers eager to get their apps in front of more buyers via an Amazon store to carefully review the terms and conditions to make sure they’re entering a relationship with a retailing behemoth like Amazon with both eyes open.

Free Software/Open Source

  • Wipeout! Google Wave’s inevitable crash

    Well, it seems that Google Wave isn’t quite dead yet after all. Turns out, they’re open sourcing a bit more of the project and asking for collaboration. (Ok, someone to take over.)

  • Minix 3.1.8 Release

    We would like to thank our Google Summer of Code students for their hard work this summer. Thanks also to Google for generously supporting our students while they hacked on MINIX. We are also grateful to the MINIX community for all your contributions and feedback. We hope you enjoy the new release.

  • Events

  • Web Browsers

    • Google releases first Chrome 7 beta

      The Google Chrome development team has released Chrome 7.0.517.24, the first beta of version 7 of the company’s WebKit-based web browser. Formerly only available in the Chrome developer channel (a.k.a. the Dev channel), the first Chrome 7 beta resolves a number of bugs that lead to crashes in the Dev channel release and introduces several changes and new features.

  • Databases

    • Firebird 2.5 Released 4-Oct-2010

      The primary goal for Firebird 2.5 was to establish the basics for a new threading architecture that is almost entirely common to the Superserver, Classic and Embedded models, taking in lower level synchronization and thread safety generally.

  • Business

    • (Finally) Meeting Mr. Open Source Business

      I spoke with Augustin ten years ago when I was writing Rebel Code, but until today, I had never met him. So it was good to do so, and to catch up with the many interesting things he has been doing in the world of open source business recently.

      Things soon went downhill at VA Linux after those amazing times a decade ago. The dotcom meltdown meant that people stopped buying VA Linux’s boxes almost overnight: revenue went from $60 million a quarter to $15 million in six months. So Augustin set about restructuring the company, turning it from one based around hardware, to one based around the Web. For when it was flush with money, VA Linux had acquired a number of leading sites, including Slashdot, Sourceforge and Freshmeat. These formed the core of a business with $40 million annual revenue – rather a come-down from the $240 million the hardware business had been bringing in just a little while before.

      One side effect of this slimming down was that Augustin had effectively made himself redundant. He joined some friends who had set up the venture capital firm Azure Capital Partners. The idea was that Augustin would help them invest in exciting new open source companies. During this time he formulated his view – novel then, but hardly earth-shattering in retrospect – that the next wave of open source companies would be at the application level.

    • Alfresco Community 3.4 arrives

      Alfresco has issued version 3.4 of its open source enterprise content management system (CMS). The latest release is aimed at making it easier for users to collaborate and and share their content as quickly and easily as possible. Discussing the release, Alfresco Software CTO John Newton said that, “The demand for collaboration and social sharing around enterprise content is rising – and content that was once meant just for the intranet is now being re-purposed for the public web, external portals or even to destination sites across the web”.

  • BSD

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

    • Software Freedom Conservancy Appoints Full-Time Executive Director

      Today, the Software Freedom Conservancy, Inc., a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, which provides Free, Libre, and Open Source Software (FLOSS) projects with fiscal sponsorship, asset stewardship, license enforcement and license compliance services, announced the appointment of Bradley M. Kuhn as its full-time Executive Director.

    • Free Software Foundation Turns 25

      The original license was written by Stallman. Stallman had subsequently written a large number of GNU tools, but the license was his most important contribution.

  • Openness/Sharing

    • Silke Helfrich on the commons and the upcoming International Commons Conference

      As more and more of the world’s population has gained access to the Internet so a growing number of free and open movements have appeared — including the free and open source software movements, free culture, creative commons, open access and open data.

    • Open Data

      • Rethinking Freedom of Information Requests: from Bugzilla to AccessZilla

        During the panel I noted that, if we are interested in improving response times for Freedom of Information (FOI) requests (or, in Canada, Access to Information (ATIP) requests) why doesn’t the Office of the Information Commissioner use a bugzilla type software to track requests?

      • Govt to make FoI data machine readable

        The government is to change the law so that all data released under the Freedom of Information Act will be fully accessible to computers.

        Cabinet Office minister Francis Maude told the Conservative party conference in Birmingham that the Freedom of Information Act will be amended so that all data released through FoI must be in a reusable and machine readable format.

      • A Taxonomy of Data Science

        Data science is clearly a blend of the hackers’ arts (primarily in steps “O” and “S” above); statistics and machine learning (primarily steps “E” and “M” above); and the expertise in mathematics and the domain of the data for the analysis to be interpretable (that is, one needs to understand the domain in which the data were generated, but also the mathematical operations performed during the “learning” and “optimization”). It requires creative decisions and open-mindedness in a scientific context.

        Our next post addresses how one goes about learning these skills, that is: “what does a data science curriculum look like?”

    • Open Access/Content

      • Opening Up Technology in Service of Teaching

        Electronic content and digital interactivity are everywhere – except in most public school classrooms. How can schools and teachers take advantage of technology to help students excel? What do teachers really need?

  • Programming

  • Standards/Consortia

    • Five Things You Need to Know About HTML5

      It’s open standard. The good news with HTML5’s standards is they are open and free of patents. For example, WebKit, which keeps a library of open-source software, provides a free layout engine that can be used to create browsers or ­applications. “You won’t have IBM (IBM) knocking at your door, saying, ‘You’re using our patents,’” says Le Hégaret. This also means you’re not dependent on one vendor’s tools, as with Adobe Flash or Microsoft (MSFT) Silverlight.

Leftovers

  • SBA suspends major contractor GTSI from government work

    Federal officials on Friday suspended one of the nation’s largest government contractors from receiving new work, alleging that the Northern Virginia company inappropriately went through other firms to gain access to contracts set aside for small companies.

    The U.S. Small Business Administration’s action imperils hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue for GTSI Corp., a top-50 contractor that has relied on the Pentagon and the rest of the federal government for more than 90 percent of its sales in recent years.

    At issue is work GTSI did as a subcontractor for small businesses serving as the prime contractors on government contracts.

  • Kevin Kelly and Steven Johnson on Where Ideas Come From

    Say the word “inventor” and most people think of a solitary genius toiling in a basement. But two ambitious new books on the history of innovation—by Steven Johnson and Kevin Kelly, both longtime wired contributors—argue that great discoveries typically spring not from individual minds but from the hive mind. In Where Good Ideas Come From: The Natural History of Innovation, Johnson draws on seven centuries of scientific and technological progress, from Gutenberg to GPS, to show what sorts of environments nurture ingenuity. He finds that great creative milieus, whether MIT or Los Alamos, New York City or the World Wide Web, are like coral reefs—teeming, diverse colonies of creators who interact with and influence one another.

  • IBM Explores Water Management Market

    Divining a possible new market in municipal water management systems, IBM has set up a pilot project in Dubuque, Iowa, to investigate whether cities could both save money and conserve water by monitoring citizens’ usage more closely.

    In this project, over 300 home dwellers have been issued smart water meters that wirelessly transit their water usage back to IBM data center, on a periodic basis. The citizens can check into a secure Web site, run by IBM, to see how much water they use, and when the it is being used during the day. The idea is that by studying water usage habits, citizens may be able to tell if they have hidden leaks.

  • Investor Peter Thiel asks Silicon Valley: Where’s the innovation?

    .

    In an interview with TechCrunch’s Sarah Lacy, Thiel, 42, argued that the high-tech gold rush that has skyrocketed valuations for Internet companies represents a sharp disconnect from the economic malaise that has blanketed much of the world, stagnating median wages and living conditions for most people just 30 miles outside of Silicon Valley.

  • Science

    • Scientists find potentially habitable planet near Earth

      A team of planet hunters led by astronomers at the University of California, Santa Cruz, and the Carnegie Institution of Washington has announced the discovery of an Earth-sized planet (three times the mass of Earth) orbiting a nearby star at a distance that places it squarely in the middle of the star’s “habitable zone,” where liquid water could exist on the planet’s surface. If confirmed, this would be the most Earth-like exoplanet yet discovered and the first strong case for a potentially habitable one.

    • History of hardware tessellation

      With the introduction of Shader Model 5.0 hardware and the API support provided by OpenGL 4.0 made GPU based geometry tessellation a first class citizen in the latest graphics applications. While the official support from all the commodity graphics card vendors and the relevant APIs are quite recent news, little to no people know that hardware tessellation has a long history in the world of consumer graphics cards. In this article I would like to present a brief introduction to tessellation and discuss about its evolution that resulted in what we can see in the latest technology demos and game titles.

  • From My Personal Blog

    • Science Blogging

      I found it gratifying back in the days around 2006 when people in my scientific field knew me in conferences because of my blogs and wanted to hang out with me because of these. The readership grew steadily as long as I kept writing. PZ Myers sees the same type of trend and Techrights, where I wrote over 11,000 posts, is the same. Perhaps I will resume posting in blog form about science later this month or next month. As always, I will separate my professional life, my personal life, and my hobbies (the 4 blogs I run will provide this separation).

    • One of My Favourite Documentaries: BBC Dissecting the True Evils of PR

      The programme is broken down into several episodes, each delivered in parts due to time limits in YouTube. Here is the first part of the four episodes.

  • Security

    • Security advisories for Monday
    • The Cyberwar Echo Chamber

      On Wednesday, Deputy Defense Secretary William Lynn III discussed the military’s cybersecurity strategy after meetings at NATO and the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe. “Like air, sea, land and space, we’re going to have to treat cyberspace as an arena where we need to defend our networks and to be able to operate freely,” he said.

      The rhetoric sounds uncannily familiar to what retired CIA and National Security Agency Director Michael Hayden told infosec professionals at the annual security conference Black Hat in July. “Cyber is a domain like land, sea, air, and space,” he said.

  • Defence/Police/Aggression

    • FBI ignores DoJ report, raids activists, arrests Time Person of the Year
    • Reddit user flames Flickr photographer; Flickr photographer threatens copyright lawsuit

      A Reddit user who posted meanspirited remarks about a Flickr user’s photo was called a jerk by the photographer. To get back, the critic posted a tiny thumbnail of the Flickr image (which is licensed Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike) to Reddit along with a complaint about his treatment.

    • Wikipedia co-founder slams Wikileaks

      The co-founder of online encyclopedia Wikipedia, Jimmy Wales, on Tuesday slammed whistleblower WikiLeaks over its release of Afghan war documents which he said could “get people killed”.

      Wales also expressed irritation over the website’s use of the term “Wiki” in its name, which refers to a site that allows different users to collaborate and make contributions.

      “I would distance myself from WikiLeaks, I wish they wouldn’t use the name, they are not a Wiki. A big way they got famous in the first place was by using the word Wiki, which was unfortunate in my view,” he said at a business conference in Kuala Lumpur.

    • Teller accused of texting robber during bank heist

      Technology is such an enabler. Even when it comes, allegedly, to robbing a bank.

      For police in Arlington, Texas, believe they have rumbled an inside job of a bank robbery by stumbling on the cell phone of one of the bank’s tellers.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • Bearing witness to the human cost of water pollution

      As part of our work to witness and expose water pollution problems around China, Greenpeace campaigners and photographer Lu Guang visited several areas along the Yangtze River that have been severely affected by industrial water pollution.

    • Global Warming Aids and Frustrates Archaeologists

      The discoveries are providing new insights into the behavior of our ancestors – but they come at a price. So rapid is the rise in global temperatures, and so great is the rate of disintegration of the world’s glaciers, that archaeologists risk losing precious relics freed from the icy tombs. Wood rots in a few years once freed from ice while rarer feathers used on arrows, wool or leather, crumble to dust in days unless stored in a freezer. As a result, archaeologists are racing against time to find and save these newly exposed wonders.

    • Oil on the bottom of the Gulf

      Here aboard the Greenpeace ship Arctic Sunrise, we are continuing our three-month science mission in the Gulf of Mexico. We are floating about five miles north of the Deepwater Horizon well site, in water that would have been covered with oil a few months ago, where thousands of gallons of oil were skimmed and burned on the surface while an armada of boats and planes delivered daily bombardment with chemical dispersants that sunk the oil back underwater into the path of any unlucky sea creatures nearby.

    • Where’s all the oil gone?

      While the water samples taken from way down deep during the trip are off to the lab to get analyzed, the immediate, measurable data obtained by Rainer tells us this; that there’s a clear indication of an oxygen deficiency in the Gulf’s waters, in an area stretching from around the Deepwater Horizon disaster site to 300 miles (500km) to the west. The infamous plume still exists – perhaps not visibly, but the essence of it is still there.

    • Man caught with uranium in Purulia

      A criminal with alleged links to gangs across the country and even Afghanistan was nabbed in Purulia with nearly 1 kg of uranium on Sunday. The market value of the radioactive element is said to be about $7 million.

    • A global network of marine reserves can restore the world’s oceans to health

      Our oceans are an absolute marvel – but they are also in a deep, deep crisis. If we don’t act fast, our oceans will continue to deteriorate and vital food sources and essential functions provided to our planet and its people by the oceans could be lost forever. Since healthy oceans underpin our very survival, Greenpeace is today releasing an “Emergency Oceans Rescue Plan” aimed at world leaders, which sets out the best way to save our oceans- something that can and should be done at the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) which takes place later this month in Japan.

  • Finance

    • Bank of America halts foreclosures in 23 states

      Bank of America is delaying foreclosures in 23 states as it examines whether it rushed the foreclosure process for thousands of homeowners without reading the documents.

      The move adds the nation’s largest bank to a growing list of mortgage companies whose employees signed documents in foreclosure cases without verifying the information in them.

    • FTC Report Will Detail Ways To Help Journalism Survive

      FTC Chairman Jon Leibowitz said Wednesday that his agency hopes to release a report by the end of the year that would detail proposals for helping journalism survive but said one idea that is unlikely to be included is a call for taxing electronic devices to subsidize newspapers and other media platforms.

      [...]

      He added that “government shouldn’t be picking winners and losers and [any proposal] should be platform neutral.”

    • IMF admits that the West is stuck in near depression

      The IMF report – “Will It Hurt? Macroeconomic Effects of Fiscal Consolidation” – implicitly argues that austerity will do more damage than so far admitted.

      Normally, tightening of 1pc of GDP in one country leads to a 0.5pc loss of growth after two years. It is another story when half the globe is in trouble and tightening in lockstep. Lost growth would be double if interest rates are already zero, and if everybody cuts spending at once.

    • Rich Germans demand to pay more in taxes.

      You read that correctly. Some of Germany’s wealthy are demanding that they pay a “Rich man’s tax” They feel that simply contributing to charity is not enough, they feel that they should pay more to support society, because they can. They say they have more money than they need.

  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

    • Electronic Frontier Foundation Fires Back At Righthaven

      The Electronic Frontier Foundation is joining the fight against Righthaven, a company that has been widely criticized for suing a string of news sites that use content belonging to its clients, including, notably, the Las Vegas Review-Journal. The EFF is now defending Democratic Underground, a political site which Righthaven sued last month for using a five-sentence excerpt of a Review-Journal article without permission. The Las Vegas Sun, which has closely been following Righthaven’s moves, says it’s the first time that Righthaven has been hit with a counterclaim.

    • ‘Pre-crime’ Comes to the HR Dept.

      In the Steven Spielberg movie Minority Report, police belonging to a special Pre-crime unit arrest people for crimes they would do in the future. It’s science fiction, and it will probably never happen in our lifetimes.

      However, the pre-crime concept is coming very soon to the world of Human Resources (HR) and employee management.

      A Santa Barbara, Calif., startup called Social Intelligence data-mines the social networks to help companies decide if they really want to hire you.

      While background checks, which mainly look for a criminal record, and even credit checks have become more common, Social Intelligence is the first company that I’m aware of that systematically trolls social networks for evidence of bad character.

      Using automation software that slogs through Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, YouTube, LinkedIn, blogs, and “thousands of other sources,” the company develops a report on the “real you” — not the carefully crafted you in your resume. The service is called Social Intelligence Hiring. The company promises a 48-hour turn-around.

    • Doctors caught revealing secret patient information in Facebook posts

      DOCTORS have been disclosing sensitive medical information – and even mocking patients – on Facebook.

      The NSW Medical Board has cautioned one doctor for making “flippant and derogatory” comments, and warned others to “think twice” before disclosing patient details on social networking sites.

    • Illinois Mayor Claims Anonymous Bloggers No Different Than 9/11 Terrorists; Says Anonymity Is A First Amendment Challenge

      And so, the mayor of Mokena gets a history lesson on the First Amendment from the press that the First Amendment enables. There’s something nice about that, though, you would have hoped the history lesson would have come sooner.

    • Blocked for two years, then taken down in just 30 minutes – a disastrous result of Internet Blocking policy

      Internet blocking is advocated as an allegedly effective measure against the proliferation of child abuse images. Countries such as the United Kingdom, Sweden and Denmark have been using this technology for years. But a practical test by the German Working Group against Access Blocking and Censorship (AK Zensur) in cooperation with European civil rights advocacy groups has shown: Internet blocking does not fight abuse, in practice it only serves to conceal the failures of politics and police. Websites can remain on blocking lists for years even though they have either been deleted or could be deleted easily and quickly.

      How is this possible, and what could be done against illegal sites? Answers are given by a new analysis of current blocking lists from Sweden and Denmark by the Working Group against Access Blocking and Censorship. The group developed software to select, categorise and geo-locate 167 blocked Internet domains as a representative sample of websites blocked in Denmark at the time of the investigation. “The result is a smack in the face of law enforcement authorities”, says Alvar Freude of the Working Group. “Of the 167 listed sites, only three contained material that could be regarded as child pornography.” Two of these three sites had been blocked in Denmark since 2008, and these are, or least were, blocked in Sweden, Norway and Finland as well. These sites were therefore known for at least two years in several countries, and apparently law enforcement authorities did nothing to try and get this illegal content removed.

    • RIAA Claims That If COICA Isn’t Passed, Americans Are ‘Put At Risk’

      With the Senate trying to rush through COICA, the online censorship bill that ignores history and appears to violate both the principles of the First Amendment and due process, a bunch of concerned citizens have been speaking out against the bill, and asking the Senate not to rush it through without at least holding hearings about the massive problems with the bill.

    • What Else Might COICA Be Used To Censor
    • Even Without COICA, White House Asking Registrars To Voluntarily Censor ‘Infringing’ Sites

      While there’s been increasing attention paid to the “Combating Online Infringement and Counterfeits Act” (COICA), the proposed law that would allow the government to require ISPs and registrars to block access to websites deemed to be “dedicated to infringing activities,” it looks like the White House (which we had thought was against censoring the internet) appears to be working on a backup plan in case COICA doesn’t pass.

    • Quebec Carnival hires lawyers to protect Bonhomme

      Quebec City’s Winter Carnival has hired lawyers to defend its beloved Bonhomme Carnaval, whose iconic image is gracing newsstands across the country this week after Maclean’s magazine used it to illustrate an explosive cover story about corruption in la belle province.

      “For the past 57 years, the Carnival has invested considerable energy and resources into protecting Bonhomme Carnaval’s outstanding reputation,” said the event’s CEO Jean Pelletier in a statement released Monday afternoon. “We are therefore examining the options available to us to enforce our intellectual property rights.”

    • Your Comments: The Maclean’s cover with Bonhomme Carnaval
    • DoT rejects BlackBerry’s email decoding solution

      The BlackBerry security jinx is unlikely to be resolved soon. The telecom department has rejected the interception solution offered by Canada’s Research In Motion (RIM) for its secure corporate email service. What’s more is that it has spurned RIM’s technical solution for decoding all chat communication on the popular BlackBerry Messenger service, which contradicts the home ministry’s recent clean chit to the Canadian smartphone maker’s interception solution for its messaging service.

    • Wiretapping the Internet

      Taking a cue from the authoritarian regimes of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, American law-enforcement and intelligence agencies are seeking to re-engineer the Internet and other digital communications networks to make them easier to spy on.

      In the week since the plan became public, it has been roundly condemned by civil liberties groups and security experts — and rightly so. While the proposal described in Monday’s New York Times probably won’t do much to hinder sophisticated criminals or terrorists, it does threaten to undermine the security of global communications and stifle technological innovation.

    • Opting out of behavioral ad tracking may get easier

      A number of major advertising associations have banded together to announce a self-regulatory program that would allow users to opt out of ad tracking. The program revolves around the awkwardly named “Advertising Option Icon”—an icon that websites could place on their site that would allow users to get more information on why they’re being targeted for ads and let them control their data collection.

      The program is based on an industry report from July 2009 titled Self-Regulatory Principles for Online Behavioral Advertising, which focuses on education, transparency, and consumer control when it comes to targeted ads. The participating organizations include the Association of National Advertisers, Direct Marketing Association, the Better Business Bureau, Interactive Advertising Bureau, and Network Advertising Initiative. And, lest you assume this is a small effort, these trade groups represent some 5,000 other companies when it comes to advertising on the Web, so they have some pull.

    • Introducing the PCI Hug It Out Podcast Series [EFF donations]
  • Internet/Net Neutrality/DRM

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • Films and the Copyright (Amendment) Bill, 2010

        One of the key objectives of the Indian Copyright (Amendment) Bill, 2010, is to protect the authors of underlying works in films (such as scriptwriters, lyricists and music composers) from exploitation by effecting extensive structural changes in the Copyright Act, 1957, and, consequently, in India’s film and music industry. The amendments proposed in the 2010 Bill cover a range of subjects including exhaustion, the regulation of copyright contracts and the role of copyright societies.

      • Launch: From “Radical Extremism” to” Balanced Copyright”: Canadian Copyright and the Digital Agenda
      • Inside the finances of the UK “legal blackmail” copyright enforcement company

        Ars Technica’s Nate Anderson continues his excellent reporting on British law firm ACS:Law, a much-derided firm that sends threatening copyright letters on behalf of pornographers. ACS suffered an Anonymous denial of service attack in September, and inadvertently dumped its entire email repository, which is now available for download all over the net. Today, Anderson digs into ACS’s finances — how much it makes, what it expects to make, and how much paper it goes through printing threatening letters to mail to poorly researched accused infringers.

      • Sarah Novotny joins OSCON for 2011

        Tweet

        The O’Reilly Open Source Convention will be returning to Portland, Oregon, July 25-29, 2011.

      • R-J owner faces counterclaim in copyright lawsuit campaign

        The owner of the Las Vegas Review-Journal has for the first time been hit with a counterclaim over its online copyright infringement lawsuit campaign, with attorneys for the Electronic Frontier Foundation accusing the newspaper of entering a “sham” relationship with the Review-Journal’s copyright enforcement partner Righthaven LLC — and accusing Righthaven of copyright fraud.

      • Would IMDB Really Not List A Film Because It Was Distributed Via BitTorrent?

        .

        The explanation that it’s because of the BitTorrent release is pure speculation. Another article, from TorrentFreak provides some more details, with notes of rejection from IMDB. They claim that the movie needs to be associated with a production company that has a history of releasing movies, in order to get listed at this early stage. However, Tedeschi notes that this is a real production house that has released movies in the past, all of which have been listed in IMDB. The only thing that he sees that’s different is the planned BitTorrent release.

      • LA Times’ Propaganda Piece Claims Piracy Hurts Filmmakers Without Any Actual Evidence

        The article also highlights a filmmaker, Ellen Seidler, who complains about spending hours a day sending emails to file sharing sites, demanding they take down her film. Just think how much better she could be doing if she spent that same time connecting with fans and giving them a reason to buy.

        What a waste of space by the LA Times, who shouldn’t be misleading people like this with bogus articles. It’s articles that portray these people as victims, due to their own lack of business initiative, that does real harm to filmmakers. If, instead, the LA Times focused on smart filmmakers who are in the same situation as Carter and Seidler, but instead embraced it and are making real money because of it, they’d be helping. Instead, they’re just making more of a mess.

      • If The Major Record Labels Tried To Adopt The ‘Radiohead’ Model…
      • No court order for Gallant Macmillan today!

        In the meantime one has to wonder, if BTplc had expressed concerns in the past, why is it only now they get an adjournment? Could it be that in not only damaging ACS:Law, the recent email leaks have also damaged the system which some wished to seek revenue from? and now Gallant Macmillan has been put on hold, what of Ministry of Sound? their site is still appears to be down. How much damage to their reputation with its potential customers has been done? From some forums, I’m seeing quite alot.

        [...]

        Torrent Freak is currently reporting a comedy spoof of a certain historical figure finding out about he leak at ACS:Law. You can find that here: http://torrentfreak.com/acslaws-anti-piracy-downfall-sends-hitler-crazy-101004/

      • ACTA

        • The ACTA deal – are they faking it?

          ACTA negotiators claim a deal has been done, but is it really a counterfeit? How is it that a deal is successfully concluded when there are matters still outstanding? It would seem that the European Commission statement of a “successful” conclusion of ACTA is somewhat pre-emptive.

        • Vrijschrift: ACTA’s secrecy is illegal

          The Dutch foundation Vrijschrift requested publication of ACTA documents. The request was denied. Vrijschrift filed an objection, below a translation:

          1. Many provisions in ACTA are mandatory: “Each Party shall”. Substantially, often they regard legislation, eg “Each Party shall provide for criminal procedures and penalties to be applied at (…)”. There is a binding relationship between ACTA and legislation.

        • ACTA W5

          Participating in ACTA

          mouse ears on the world: text says ACTA ATTACKS INTERNET

          * Australia
          * Canada,
          * the European Union
          * Japan
          * South Korea
          * Mexico
          * New Zealand
          * Switzerland
          * United States

          American Flag hangs down

          ACTA came with heavy duty Non-Disclosure penalties. Which is why most if not all of the elected representatives of the participating governments were kept in the dark about what was even on the table. This includes elected representatives of the American Government. If they were made privvy to the negotiations, they were legally restrained from talking about it. Not very democratic, eh?

        • Did ACTA pass?

          The fact that ACTA did NOT go as planned probably means they will fight harder to achieve their goals in different ways. Canada is likely to get more “special treatment” since we’ve provided a hot bed of opposition. The fact that ACTA has not passed probably means that there will be an even stronger push to get the dreadful Bill C-32 passed.

        • Upcoming Comic Book By Law Professors Compares ACTA To 1984
        • ACTA: No More Negotiating Rounds Planned; Latest Text To Be Released

          The round of negotiations in Tokyo last week on the controversial Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA) will be the last in the several-year long process to come to a final agreement, negotiators have said. The latest text – along with highlighted issue areas on which certain countries still have reservations – will be released before the end of the week, negotiators told Intellectual Property Watch.

          The most critical outstanding issue is scope, especially on border measures, a Japanese negotiator told Intellectual Property Watch today. There was a “certain convergence” but “further examination was needed in some capitals,” the negotiator said. “In that sense we haven’t gotten agreement” yet.

Clip of the Day

Juan Pedro Bolivar – “GNU Psycosynth”


Credit: TinyOgg

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