10.27.10

Gemini version available ♊︎

Links 27/10/2010: Many Developers Choose GNU/Linux Desktops, Russia Moves to GNU/Linux Desktops

Posted in News Roundup at 7:24 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • RedMonk Analytics: What Operating Systems are Developers Using?

    Windows is the easy winner, but Linux is as clearly second to Mac’s third. The primary takeaway for most is that Linux traction is strong amongst Eclipse users. The obvious next question is whether this trend holds amongst a wider development community or whether it’s a more localized Eclipse phenomenon. My hypothesis was that it was the latter; that we would instead see different trends amongst, for example, web developer communities. To test this, I decided to take an unscientific look at the raw data that powers RedMonk Analytics, but filtering it by subject to isolate individual community trends.

  • Russia developing alternative OS to Windows

    The Russian government has decided it is going to develop its own operating system as an alternative to using Microsoft Windows.

    Rather than opting for an existing Linux distribution instead, Russia will invest $4.9 million creating its own OS based on Linux for use across all government departments.

    A meeting is planned in December where vice-prime minister Sergei Ivanov will discuss the details and plan of action for the development. The key aims are to remove the dependence on Windows and allow for better security, while at the same time not becoming just another Linux distribution.

  • Russia to create ‘Windows rival’

    The Russian state plans to revamp its computer services with a Windows rival to reduce its dependence on US giant Microsoft and better monitor computer security, a lawmaker said Wednesday.

    Moscow will earmark 150 million rubles (3.5 million euros, 4.9 million dollars) to develop a national software system based on the Linux operating system, Russian deputy Ilia Ponomarev told AFP, confirming an earlier report in the Vedomosti daily.

  • Kernel Space/Linux Foundation

    • Linux Foundation and Consumer Electronics Linux Forum to Merge

      The Linux Foundation, the nonprofit organization dedicated to accelerating the growth of Linux, and the Consumer Electronics Linux Forum (CELF), a nonprofit organization and international open source software development community focused on embedded Linux, today announced they will merge organizations, resulting in the CE Linux Forum becoming a technical workgroup at The Linux Foundation. As part of this merge, The Linux Foundation will expand its technical programs in the embedded computing space.

      The use of Linux in embedded products has skyrocketed in recent years, with Linux now being used in consumer electronic devices of all kinds. CELF and The Linux Foundation believe that by combining resources they can more efficiently enable the adoption of Linux in the Consumer Electronics (CE) industry. Given the broad overlap in members between The Linux Foundation and CELF, the similarity in the goals of both organizations, and the large increase of embedded participants coming to Linux in recent years, this aligning of resources will strengthen each organization and ultimately help the organizations’ members achieve their missions: growing the embedded Linux market.

    • CELF is joining the Linux Foundation
    • Yocto Project aims to standardize embedded Linux builds

      While announcing its merger with the Consumer Electronics Linux Forum (CELF) today, the Linux Foundation launched an open source build system project called the Yocto Project. Based on the Poky Linux build system, the CELF- and Intel-driven Yocto Project aims to provide open source tools to help companies make custom, Linux-based embedded systems for ARM, MIPS, PowerPC, and x86 architectures.

    • While Apple Debates Open vs Integrated, We Want the Best of Both Worlds

      Embedded systems aren’t just the fastest growing market for Linux; they are one of the fastest growing sectors of computing. And in that segment, Linux growth continues to eclipse all other platforms.

      Today, Linux-based systems are powering products and software that are household names: Android, Palm WebOS, Tivo, Sony, and more. But the majority of Linux use in this space is in traditional embedded systems such as machine-to-machine (M2M) communication, aerospace and defense, and networking, for example. These products typically consist of “roll your own” Linux comprised of upstream components such as the kernel, X, and glibc that run on top of a specific hardware product. Companies and developers in these markets, in particular, are able to leverage free software and build systems quickly and affordably. And while market-share clearly proves this system is working, at The Linux Foundation we have recognized there are even more places where the industry can collaborate to control costs and speed time to market.

    • Linux Embeds Itself Even Deeper

      Because anyone can take Linux and use it as they wish without needing to ask permission (provided they comply with the licence), it ends up being used in lots of places that we rarely hear about. This contrasts with proprietary operating systems, which only get used if they are licensed directly, which means that the licensor always knows exactly what is going on – and can issue yet another boring press release accordingly.

      This contrast between much-trumpeted proprietary activity and near-invisible open goings-on is probably most acute in the world of embedded devices. Most people aren’t even aware that there is an operating system being used in many of their more “intelligent” consumer electronics devices, let alone that it is likely to be a variant of Linux.

    • The Main DRM Pull Request For The Linux 2.6.37 Kernel

      David Airlie has just called upon Linus Torvalds to pull in his DRM kernel tree for the Linux 2.6.37 kernel merge window. We have talked about many of these features before that are now entering the mainline Linux kernel code-base as new capabilities of the open-source Linux graphics stack, but here’s the list of what made the cut for Linux 2.6.37 and details on some of the features we have yet to discuss.

  • Applications

    • 4 useful graphic and non-graphic linux apps for text and color

      Last weekend I hat some nice chats as well at Ubuntu Release Party in Berlin, as well as something like a talk circle. Out of those I like to share some application tipps with you:

    • Instructionals/Technical

    • Wine

      • You Can Finally Install Evernote (4) In Linux, Under Wine

        Evernote 4 has been released yesterday and the new version brings a completely redesigned user interface and a re-write of the code to C++.

      • Adobe To Use TransGaming’s SwiftShader; Remember Cedega?

        TransGaming, the company behind the Cedega program for running Windows games on Linux (as an alternative to using Wine or CodeWeaver’s CrossOver Games) and Cider as the Mac equivalent, has just announced that Adobe is now licensing its SwiftShader Technology for the Adobe Flash Player and Adobe AIR.

        SwiftShader is TransGaming’s pure software 3D renderer that supports features like vertex/pixel shaders, floating point rendering, and other DirectX 9.0 / OpenGL ES 2.0 level features. Adobe is hooking up with TransGaming so that developers targeting Flash and AIR can utilize 3D APIs (such as Direct3D and OpenGL) and those users that are without any 3D hardware/driver support will fall-back to SwiftShader for the software rendering in future versions of the Flash Player and AIR run-time. This is basically a proprietary CPU-based software renderer that Adobe is licensing from TransGaming.

    • Games

      • Excellent Youtube Channel Covering Linux Gaming Videos

        Linux Gaming by Jake Ward is an awesome Youtube Channel that covers lots of native Linux as well as Windows games that runs perfectly under Wine. The channel neatly categorises all the videos in simple playlists for easy access like native Linux games, free games, Windows games, must have games etc.

        Every video on the channel is accompanied by a brief description about the game and download links if the game is free or any demo is available. One of the cool features about the channel is if you want to see some Linux game in action, just suggest it on the channel and a video on it will be up.

  • Desktop Environments

    • GNOME Desktop

      • What’s next in GNOME’s future?

        Canonical will be shipping Unity as the default desktop for Ubuntu 11.04. It’ll still be GNOME technologies underneath, GNOME applications will run on it and it’s still optimized for GNOME, but it won’t be the GNOME shell. Not the traditional GNOME shell that we all know and love nor the new GNOME Shell coming out in GNOME 3.0.

      • Orta GTK Theme: A Stylish Theme Based On Elementary

        Inspired (and actually heavily based on…) by the Elementary theme, Orta comes with some slick new elements to give your desktop a more polished look. The most interesting elements are the scrollbar – which even though look a lot like in Elementary, seem more polished -, the Nautilus Elementary breadcrumbs, buttons and the Gedit tabs.

  • Distributions

    • Parted Magic review

      Parted Magic is a compact and lightweight distribution of Linux to help you manage your disk. It is a live distribution that can run off a CD/DVD or a USB drive. It comes packed with several useful disk and partition management tools such as GParted and Clonezilla. Unlike a number of live distributions of Linux out there, Parted Magic has a pretty specialised approach to things.

    • Red Hat Family

      • IGEL Adds VDI Clients for Open-Source SPICE and VMware View 4.5 to its Linux Thin Client Range

        German thin client manufacturer, IGEL Technology, today became the first company in its sector to integrate the open-source software client SPICE into its Linux operating system for its Universal Desktop thin client range. With the SPICE client, IGEL customers who already use Linux at their server level can now provision high-performance virtual desktops with different guest systems. For instance, SPICE can be deployed within the Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization for Desktops solution in order to virtualize Microsoft Windows 7 Professional, Microsoft Windows XP Professional or Red Hat Enterprise Linux.

      • Fedora

        • Spending the afternoon in Fedora 13
        • Fedora 14 with Live USB Creator and persistent storage for a dry run of the distribution

          Right now I’m testing a recent daily build of Fedora 14 via the Fedora Live USB Creator with persistent storage. Theoretically this should allow me to modify the live Fedora image on the USB and test how the release runs on my hardware with whatever fixes need to be applied in order to make things actually work.

          At this point that means the fglrx driver direct from ATI/AMD, which I’m installing right now, and the creation/modification of /etc/modprobe.d/alsa-base.conf to allow for speaker muting when headphones are plugged in.

        • WE WANT YOU!! to help out with Fedora Elections.

          The Fedora Project is gearing up for our twice-annual elections process, for an election period in late November. During this election, we’ll be voting on positions in the following groups:

          * Fedora Board
          * Fedora Engineering Steering Committee (FESCo)
          * Fedora Ambassadors Steering Committee (FAmSCo)

    • Debian Family

      • Canonical/Ubuntu

        • PointnClick guide to running Ubuntu in the cloud

          It doesn’t get any easier than this, so let’s hit it

        • Canonical Will Not Abandon Java, Says Mark Shuttleworth

          The founder of Ubuntu, Mark Shuttleworth, has announced at UDS that despite the recent decision of Steve Jobs and Apple to move away from the Java environment, Canonical will continue to consider Java a first grade development platform.

        • New UbuntuForums.org Design On The Way

          The Ubuntu website and basically all the official Ubuntu related websites have been upgraded to use the new Ubuntu branding, except for Ubuntuforums.

          But that’s about to change. Mike Basinger create a blueprint @ Launchpad regarding this matter which has already been accepted, so it looks like we’ll be getting a new Ubuntuforums design soon (I’m not sure when).

        • What is Ubuntu?

          Video produced designed to be looped telling people in a fun way what Ubuntu is.

        • Flavours and Variants

          • Edubuntu WebLive now features Edubuntu 11.04 daily builds

            Yesterday during the Edubuntu plenary at the Ubuntu Developer Summit I announced that you can now try the latest development release from WebLive.

          • Lubuntu Screencast: Abiword Wordprocessing

            In this Screencast I show you the default wordprocessing application under Lubuntu 10.10 called Abiword.
            Abiword has some special features which allow you to work collaboratively on a document or search the web for translating passages of your text.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • Phones

      • Android

        • Playstation Phone Gets One Step Closer to Reality

          Engadget claims the phone will be most likely be running Android 3.0 but also mentions Gingerbread which we’ve been hearing is actually Android 2.3.

        • The PlayStation Phone? Images, hardware specs surface

          Are we moving closer to the official announcement of a PlayStation Phone? Engadget is running images of a device it claims to be the mythical hardware, with a few interesting details. The phone allegedly sports a 1GHz Qualcomm MSM8655, 512MB of RAM, 1GB of ROM, and the screen is “in the range” of 3.7 to 4.1 inches.

        • PlayStation Phone ‘is most definitely real’

          Images of the PlayStation Phone which emerged today are “most definitely real”, despite the spreading reports of it being fake.

          So says Engadget, who asserts that the images and spec information it reports have come from “multiple trusted sources”.

          “The PlayStation Phone in the photos we ran last night, and the device reported on back in August is most definitely real,” says the site, reminding us of an incredibly similar mock up it released in August.

        • PayPal Announces Android Market Payment Support, Quickly Pulls It

          Well, well, well. An eagle-eyed reader tells us PayPal posted a short announcement yesterday on its corporate blog, only to pull it mere seconds later. As you can tell from the URL, PayPal was poised to announce support for “all three major mobile platforms” (also see retweets of the blog post).

        • Is Android Open?

          Steve Jobs raised the question last week “Is Android Open?”. What was particularly funny was that he was using the word “open” in a sense that most people don’t use or hear these days. That’s why it was so funny to see Andy Rubin’s response, because they were talking about fundamentally different things. What a lot of people have forgotten is that the word “open” was seriously redefined in 1998 by the people who coined “open source.”

          Before open source “open” meant compatibility. “Open computing” was a selling point of the workstation market that said “if you compile your [usually C] code on a DEC workstation, you can send it to your friend who uses a Sun workstation, it will work. Fantastic! Buy our hardware!” Modern Macintosh computers are the descendants, not of Mac OS 9, but of NeXT computers, which were Steve Jobs’ workstation computers.

Free Software/Open Source

  • Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? Apache, KDE

    To get from commit 1 to commit 1,000,000 took the ASF roughly 14-and-a-half years and the effort of 2506 contributors in the VCS. For KDE it was roughly 10-and-a-half years and the effort of 2154 contributors in the VCS.

  • ForgeRock: Announcing OpenIDM

    You’ll recall that we started ForgeRock near the start of 2010 to provide continuity for customers of Sun’s enterprise identity middleware products and from that to establish a new ISV creating an identity-oriented application platform, all as open source software. So far we have rehosted OpenSSO in the OpenAM project, and rehosted OpenDS in the OpenDJ project. Demand has been strong and we’ve established a diverse international customer base already, after only 9 months.

  • ForgeRock Community Participation Agreement (FCPA) version 1.0
  • Events

  • Web Browsers

    • Mozilla

      • First Look at Firefox Mobile 4

        Mozilla has publicized beta releases of the desktop version of Firefox 4 since July, but mobile users can test out the next major update to the mobile browser as well. Firefox 4 for Mobile is officially at beta 1, with builds available for devices running Android and Nokia’s Maemo operating system.

        [...]

        After all, it is all well and good that Android itself is an open source operating system, but the application marketplace and the OEM pre-installed app list is still dominated by proprietary software. Maemo is soon to be replaced in mass-market devices by MeeGo, and although its netbook builds run the usual stack of Linux applications, the handheld products may not. We might not see Emacs and XChat on our phones any time soon, but it’s reassuring to see a high-quality, extensible open source browser made available. I just wonder if we will ever see it preinstalled.

      • Mozilla delays Firefox 4 until ‘early 2011′

        Mozilla has pushed back the planned release of Firefox to sometime in “early 2011.” Previously, the open source outfit had said its latest desktop browser would be officially released next month.

  • Oracle

    • [Olivier Hallot leaves OOo]

      So by closing this important chapter, and with the feeling that I had my mission accomplished within the OpenOffice.org community, I must now to communicate that I am resigning from the roles I took in OpenOffice.org project in the last 9 years, namely in the Community Council as well as the translation lead for Brazilian Portuguese. My duties in the BrOffice community remains unchanged.

      Congratulations for the amazing new 3.3 release and farewell.

    • IBM releases Lotus Symphony 3 office suite

      IBM has announced the arrival of version 3 of its free Lotus Symphony office suite. The productivity tool suite consists of three applications, Documents, Spreadsheets and Presentations, and is based on the 3.x branch of OpenOffice.org.

  • CMS

    • In Praise of Open Source Diversity

      What’s really great here is that the leader of one CMS projects comments directly on the blog post of another CMS leader. That’s what you’d hope from open projects working in the same space, but it’s still good to see. I also think it is rather healthy to hear that the two leaders differ here. As I mentioned at the start of this post, choice is central to free software, and that’s not just a matter of software: it also refers to people’s views. Just as proprietary monocultures bring with them great vulnerability, so open source diversity of this kind is a very real strength.

  • Government

    • FR: ‘Marseille’s desktop plans conflict with procurement rules’

      Plans developed by the IT department of the French city of Marseille to replace its three desktops operating systems by a single proprietary operating system, are breaking procurement rules, alleges April, an association on free software and Libertis, a association of IT service companies specialising in this type of software.

      In a call for tender, a public administration can request the use of open source, April and Libertis write in their statement published on 19 October. “However, to select one particular brand is strictly prohibited by the Procurement Code.”

      In its statement, the two associations protest the end to Marseille’s plans to move to an open source desktop operating system: “The chief technology officer (CTO) has abruptly stopped the switch to Linux and is imposing his personal choices. We denounce his illegal and authoritarian choices that go against the interests of the city and the taxpayers of Marseille.”

    • Why You Should Respond to the e-Commerce Consultation
    • PT: ‘Gvt must stop breaking procurement rules and move to open source’

      The Portuguese Association for Free Software (Ansol) is urging the government to stop buying proprietary software licences without a public tender, and to switch to free and open source software.

      The advocacy group uncovered that five public administrations in 2009 spent more than 120 million Euro in total on proprietary software licences for operating systems and office applications, without properly following procurement rules. “It is illegal, and in these times of crises, such volumes are unjustifiable.”

    • Speaker Guest Editorial | Linux: Reducing Costs in Government Application

      As we prepare for GOSCON this year, there are a number of key topics that come to mind. When one thinks about “Government” today, undoubtedly we hear discussions around cuts in government services; the need to raise taxes; stopping or reducing deficit spending and the general trend of doing more with less. This is not just at the Federal level, it is also a focus at the state and local government levels, too. In 2007, for the first time in history, the majority of the world’s population—3.3 billion people—lived in cities. By 2050, city dwellers are expected to make up 70% of Earth’s total population, or 6.4 billion people. So isn’t it critical for us to start to understand just how technology fits into this ever-growing clamor for improved government services at reduced costs to the taxpayer?

  • Openness/Sharing

    • Why We Hack: The Benefits of Disobedience

      Sometimes disobedience is necessary and good when rules fail us, and it’s at the core of why we hack. Hacking is a means of expressing dissatisfaction, confounding the mechanism, and ultimately doing better. Here’s why it’s so important.

    • Rethinking Wikipedia contributions rates

      About a year ago news stories began to surface that wikipedia was losing more contributors that it was gaining. These stories were based on the research of Felipe Ortega who had downloaded and analyzed millions the data of contributors.

      This is a question of importance to all of us. Crowdsourcing has been a powerful and disruptive force socially and economically in the short history of the web. Organizations like Wikipedia and Mozilla (at the large end of the scale) and millions of much smaller examples have destroyed old business models, spawned new industries and redefined the idea about how we can work together. Understand how the communities grow and evolve is of paramount importance.

  • Programming

    • Geek&Poke Looks Behind The Scenes Of Coders
    • 7 programming languages on the rise

      Programmers looking for work in enterprise shops would be foolish not to learn the languages that underlie this paradigm, yet a surprising number of niche languages are fast beginning to thrive in the enterprise. Look beyond the mainstays, and you’ll find several languages that are beginning to provide solutions to increasingly common problems, as well as old-guard niche languages that continue to occupy redoubts. All offer capabilities compelling enough to justify learning a new way to juggle brackets, braces, and other punctuation marks.

  • Standards/Consortia

    • HTML5 web video flashes past Flash

      HTML5 now commands a majority of web-based video support, but its rise is being fueled by mobile devices. Adobe Flash still holds the lead in desktop content.

      This news comes from a new survey of HTML5-video penetration conducted by MeFeedia, the self-described “largest independent video site on the web with partnerships so big they make us nervous.” The company’s content partners include Hulu, CBS, and ABC, and they carry content from such sites as YouTube, Vimeo, and others.

Leftovers

  • Book review: The Return of the Public by Dan Hind

    It is becoming a cliché to say that we live in a time of crisis. Whether it’s catastrophic climate change, financial meltdown or collapse of trust in our political representatives, disaster is already upon us and the state seems powerless to construct a meaningful response.

    According to Dan Hind’s new book, underlying our inability to tackle these crises is yet another crisis – a crisis of publicity. In his view, the make up of the ‘public’ – “the informed autonomous body capable of initiating policy and driving legislative changes” – now excludes the vast majority of people. Instead, the state bends itself to an elite public dominated by those who control (though not own) the vast capital flows of major corporations and the financial markets which connect them.

  • Oct. 27, 1994: Web Gives Birth to Banner Ads

    1994: Wired.com, then known as HotWired, invents the web banner ad. Go ahead, blame us.

  • Girl turns her boring old minivan into the Ninja Turtles van

    Minivans aren’t the most exciting vehicles to drive around. But the Ninja Turtles’ van? Now that’s how you get around in style. So when 23-year-old Brittney Schneck came into possession of a ’94 Dodge Caravan, she decided to upgrade it to something a bit more gnarly.

  • MAFIA BOSS ‘WAS PLAYING GODFATHER XBOX GAME’

    Top Mafia boss Gerlandino Messina was playing an Xbox game based on the popular Godfather movies before being arrested last weekend, police said Wednesday.

  • Research finds that databases are unreliable

    ACCORDING TO RESEARCH by Informatica Corp, databases are not doing the job they were intended to do.

    Informatica, which sells enterprise integration software, has published its research into how well databases are used and integrated, and warned that many are “falling short of ideals”.

  • Nearly half of top UK firms do not use software escrow

    Almost half of the 350 most valuable listed companies in the UK do not have software escrow agreements in place to give them access to technology if a supplier goes bust, according to an escrow services company.

  • Will the New MySpace Suck Less?

    Do you have some “Generation Y” teens or pre-teens lazing about your home? Because the terminally ill old social network down by the river, MySpace, would like to show them racy videos all day in his redesigned internet van. Exciting.

  • Jobs turned down Bungie… at first: how Microsoft burned Apple

    Tuncer Deniz worked at Bungie as a producer from 1996 to 1998 and served as the project lead on Myth 2, but he stayed in contact with top Bungie execs. After recently hearing the story of how Steve Jobs got angry when Bungie went to Microsoft in 2000, Deniz decided to tell us what had happened as he heard it. Turns out that Steve Jobs was angry for a very simple reason: he had wanted to purchase Bungie himself… after first turning the company down.

  • Google’s big buy

    Google appears close to buying the trophy 111 Eighth Ave. building, one of the largest buildings in Manhattan, The Post has learned.

  • Science

    • Giant crater may have been extinction trigger

      One of the largest meteorite impacts in the world has been discovered in the Australian outback – an impact so powerful it may have been the trigger for a major extinction event.

      The meteorite struck Australia around 300 million years ago and produced a ‘shock zone’ – the area of land deformed by the strike – at least 80 km wide.

    • FPGA manufacturer claims to beat Moore’s Law

      CHIP DESIGNER Xilinx has announced that it can beat Moore’s Law by introducing stacked silicon interconnects.

      The announcement debuts devices that allow for higher bandwidth, capacity and reduction in power by having multiple field-programmable gate arrays (FPGAs) in a single package. The firm is saying that by using 3D packaging and through-silicon vias on its 28nm 7 series FPGAs, it can “overcome the boundaries of Moore’s Law and offer electronics manufacturers unparalleled power, bandwidth and density optimization”.

    • Three Gorges dam finally operating at full capacity

      The water level at the Three Gorges dam, aka the largest hydropower plant in the world, reached its maximum yesterday, spurring electricity output to full capacity for the first time since it began operations in 2008. Dam officials have been holding back water since September in order to let it rise to its peak height of 175m Tuesday morning.

    • Chip giants investigate more power efficient chip design

      IBM and other chip makers look beyond CMOS to design a more energy efficient processor

  • Security

  • Defence/Police/Aggression

    • It’s the Occupation, Stupid

      In the decade since 9/11, the United States has conquered and occupied two large Muslim countries (Afghanistan and Iraq), compelled a huge Muslim army to root out a terrorist sanctuary (Pakistan), deployed thousands of Special Forces troops to numerous Muslim countries (Yemen, Somalia, Sudan, etc.), imprisoned hundreds of Muslims without recourse, and waged a massive war of ideas involving Muslim clerics to denounce violence and new institutions to bring Western norms to Muslim countries. Yet Americans still seem strangely mystified as to why some Muslims might be angry about this situation.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • The clamour for African coal

      Tete, in Mozambique, sits above one of the world’s largest reserves of high-quality coal. Money is pouring in and the mood is upbeat, writes Richard Lapper, but getting the product to market won’t be easy.

  • Finance

    • Belgium in Crisis: Potato Prices Rise

      Investors world-wide are braced for rising commodity prices: The cost of sugar is set to surpass the 30-year high recorded earlier this year, while breakfast cereal manufacturers will increase prices to reflect the soaring market value of corn. But for Belgium, the worst is yet to come: The potato market is “firm” and Belgian fries may be set to rise in price.

  • Censorship/Privacy/Civil Rights

    • Armed with new treaty, Europe amplifies objections to U.S. data-sharing demands

      The Obama administration has encountered mounting resistance in Europe to its demands for broad sharing of airline passenger data and other personal information designed to spot would-be terrorists before they strike.

      Europe’s objections, based on privacy considerations, worry U.S. counterterrorism officials because computer scrutiny of passenger lists has become an increasingly important tool in the struggle to prevent terrorists from entering the United States or traveling to and from their havens. The would-be Times Square bomber was hauled off a Dubai-bound airliner in May, a senior U.S. counterterrorism official said, after his name on the manifest produced a ding in Department of Homeland Security computers.

  • Internet/Net Neutrality/DRM

    • DRM Is Toxic To Culture

      Digital Restriction Methods (DRM) aren’t just a nuisance that treats all customers as if they had stolen what they actually paid for. They also threaten our future cultural heritage.

    • British Library explores research technologies of the future

      Working with hardware partner HP and software partner Microsoft, the library is showcasing a range of research tools, including a prototype of Sony’s RayModeler 360-degree Autostereoscopic Display that uses gesture control to view static and moving 3D images and video.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • How Trademark Law Has Turned From A Consumer Protection Law, Into A Weapon To Hinder Competition

      Trademark lawyer Ron Coleman, who runs the excellent Likelihood of Confusion blog, has now written a paper that highlights his concerns about where trademark law has been trending recently, and comparing it to the excesses of copyright law these days.

    • Copyrights

      • Consultation Lays Bare Divide Over Future of Canadian Book Industry

        Those cultural policies are part of a major government consultation that comes amid signals that Canadian Heritage Minister James Moore may be open to relaxing those policies as online sellers and electronic books shake up the marketplace. Last spring, the government approved the establishment of a physical distribution facility for Amazon.ca, a move opposed by the Canadian Booksellers Association. The approval came with strings attached – Amazon promised new investments in Canada, increased availability of French language content, and higher visibility of Canadian books – but the precedent was clearly established.

      • Torrent Site Launches VPN to Counter France’s Anti-Piracy Law

        With the introduction of its three-strikes law, France has positioned itself at the forefront of the ‘war on piracy’. Under the new Hadopi legislation, alleged copyright infringers will be hunted down systematically, but not if it’s up to France’s largest torrent site. In a counter-move the Smartorrent team recently launched a VPN service, and nearly 2500 users of the site have already signed up for an account.

      • 5 Ways To Download Torrents Anonymously

        With anti-piracy outfits and dubious law-firms policing BitTorrent swarms at an increasing rate, many Bittorrent users are looking for ways to hide their identities from the outside world. To accommodate this demand we’ll give an overview of 5 widely used privacy services.

      • New EU Music Copyright Rules for 2011

        This new copyright proposal forms part of the European Commission’s general overhaul – officially a relaunch – of the Single European Market. The announcement was made at a press conference in Brussels today, and encompasses 50 proposals to be put in place by 2012.

        The Commission’s big new idea is to acknowledge that citizens, as well as business, have a stake in the Single Market. The relaunch was therefore held jointly by Michel Barnier, Commissioner for the Internal Market, and Viviane Reding, Commissioner for Fundamental Rights.

      • The music industry’s new business model

        An interesting story from Financial Times is the result of an interview with Brian Message, a former accountant (i.e. lion-tamer in training) who is one of Radiohead’s three managers. Thom Yorke of Radiohead, according to the article, has predicted the demise of the major labels within months. Good. I don’t think he’s inflating things at all.

        [...]

        I hope that Brian Message and Thom Yorke are right: what is about to happen to the a-holes running the major labels is not just “DIY record labels.” The music industry is cannibalizing itself and all that will be left will be small businesses that actually care about music. That will be the only way to get music: buy it from the artists themselves.

      • Ton Roosendaal, Sintel Producer and head of Blender Institute

        Sintel is the Blender Institute’s third “open movie”. Could you describe what “open movie” means to the Blender Institute?

        Oh… many things. First, I love to work with artists, which goes much easier than working with developers! And making short animation films with teams is an amazing and very rewarding activity. With this large creative community of Blender artists, the financial model enables it even; not many short film makers have this opportunity.

        But the practical incentive to do this is because it’s a great development model for Blender. Putting artists together on a major challenge is the ultimate way to drive software like Blender forward. That way we can also ensure it fits ambitious targets weeding out the ‘would be cool features’ for the ‘must need’ ones. And it’s quite easier to design usability with small diverse teams, than have it done online via feedback mechanisms, which easily becomes confusing with the noise of hundreds of different opinions.

      • ACTA

        • Corruption perception index and # MINUTES

          La nota de hoy sin duda es la publicación por parte de Transparencia Internacional (TI) de su lista anual del índice de corrupción por país. The letter of today is undoubtedly the publication by Transparency International (TI) in its annual corruption index by country. Para transparencia internacional, la corrupción puede ser definida como el abuso del poder para beneficio privado. For Transparency International, corruption can be defined as the abuse of power for private gain. El indice es la percepción que se tiene de la corrupción en el sector público y para ser medido se requiere como mínimo de tres fuentes. The index is the perception that there is corruption in the public sector is required to be measured at least three sources.

          Prometo hacer un análisis más amplio, pero de entrada me metí a ver cómo le había ido a los países negociadores de ACTA respecto del año pasado, esto fue lo que encontré: I promise to do further analysis, but the input I got to see how he had gone to the ACTA negotiating countries from last year, this is what I found…

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