TechBytes Episode 18: Chrome OS, Sharing, Freedom, and Wikileaks

Posted in TechBytes at 8:02 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz


Direct download as Ogg (1:59:08, 36.1 MB) | Direct download as MP3 (54.5 MB)

Summary: After almost a week (due to absence) we return to covering and debating recent stories of relevance within our scope

TODAY’S show covers many topics ranging from Google’s new operating system to Microsoft’s slow death in the mobile space. OpenBytes has published the show notes containing some of the topics we ran through.

RSS 64x64Today’s show ends with “Devil’s Best Dress” by Cord Lund. We hope you will join us for future shows and consider subscribing to the show via the RSS feed. You can also visit our archives for past shows. If you have an Identi.ca account, consider subscribing to TechBytes in order to keep up to date.

As embedded (HTML5):


Ogg Theora
(There is also an MP3 version)

Our past shows:

November 2010

Show overview Show title Date recorded
Episode 1: Brandon from Fedora TechBytes Episode 1: Apple, Microsoft, Bundling, and Fedora 14 (With Special Guest Brandon Lozza) 1/11/2010
Episode 2: No guests TechBytes Episode 2: Ubuntu’s One Way, Silverlight Goes Dark, and GNU Octave Discovered 7/11/2010
Episode 3: No guests TechBytes Episode 3: Games, Wayland, Xfce, Restrictive Application Stores, and Office Suites 8/11/2010
Episode 4: No guests TechBytes Episode 4: Fedora 14 Impressions, MPAA et al. Payday, and Emma Lee’s Magic 9/11/2010
Episode 5: No guests TechBytes Episode 5: Windows Loses to Linux in Phones, GNU/Linux Desktop Market Share Estimations, and Much More 12/11/2010
Episode 6: No guests TechBytes Episode 6: KINect a Cheapo Gadget, Sharing Perceptually Criminalised, Fedora and Fusion 14 in Review 13/11/2010
Episode 7: No guests TechBytes Episode 7: FUD From The Economist, New Releases, and Linux Eureka Moment at Netflix 14/11/2010
Episode 8: Gordon Sinclair on Linux Mint TechBytes Episode 8: Linux Mint Special With Gordon Sinclair (ThistleWeb) 15/11/2010
Episode 9: Gordon Sinclair returns TechBytes Episode 9: The Potentially Permanent Return of ThistleWeb 17/11/2010
Episode 10: Special show format TechBytes Episode 10: Microsoft FUD and Dirty Tactics Against GNU/Linux 19/11/2010
Episode 11: Part 2 of special show TechBytes Episode 11: Microsoft FUD and Dirty Tactics Against GNU/Linux – Part II 21/11/2010
Episode 12: Novell special TechBytes Episode 12: Novell Sold for Microsoft Gains 23/11/2010
Episode 13: No guests TechBytes Episode 13: Copyfight, Wikileaks, and Other Chat 28/11/2010
Episode 14: Patents special TechBytes Episode 14: Software Patents in Phones, Android, and in General 29/11/2010
Episode 15: No guests TechBytes Episode 15: Google Chrome OS, Windows Refund, and Side Topics Like Wikileaks 30/11/2010

December 2010

Show overview Show title Date recorded
Episode 16: No guests TechBytes Episode 16: Bribes for Reviews, GNU/Linux News, and Wikileaks Opinions 3/12/2010
Episode 17: No guests TechBytes Episode 17: Chrome OS Imminent, Wikileaks Spreads to Mirrors, ‘Open’ Microsoft 5/12/2010

IRC Proceedings: December 11th, 2010

Posted in IRC Logs at 7:15 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz




#techrights log

#boycottnovell log

#boycottnovell-social log

Enter the IRC channels now

Microsoft Windows Weakness on Desktops and Phones

Posted in GNU/Linux, Google, Patents, Vista 7, Vista 8, Windows at 4:18 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

It’s vapourware time


Summary: Microsoft talks about Vista 8 [sic] and mobile patents rather than existing products, which simply don’t sell so well

A FEW days ago we showed that Vista 7 adoption was actually quite poor, but Microsoft dishonestly reported false figures. The post “Cost-ineffective “7″ Deployment” helps explain why the operating system just doesn’t make sense for a business, based on economic terms:

That looks like -$1250 and you get nothing for the expenditure… How is that cost-effective? Any possible benefit is just a wash, about the same as the last system that you are chucking while still viable. One could go to Debian GNU/Linux and be free of most of these costs. Really. If you can get all your machines to boot PXE, you can slap GNU/Linux onto hard drives in 20 minutes or so and you are done. One re-boot and the system is working, free of malware and not slowing down until there is a hardware or network failure. If the machines are really old, you will be better off using LTSP, a package in many distros these days, to boot them and users run applications and sessions on a powerful new machine that can please dozens at once.

Microsoft understands that Vista 7 adoption will be slow and businesses see no reason to use it. Some might even move to another operating system. In order to “freeze the market” — as Microsoft's Nathan Myhrvold once put it — they are dropping a name as a form of vapourware. They say that the mythical Vista 8 will have an interface called “Wind” but provide no proof:

As of now, all of these are mere rumors as there is no way to confirm any of them. So take them with a pinch of salt.

According to previous leaks from Microsoft, we are two years away from knowing if any of these are true.

Based on this confidential Microsoft document [PDF], Microsoft uses vapourware (speaking about future versions or products that don’t yet exist) only when the competition is too much to bear. In the mobile arena, for example, Linux/Android beats Windows very easily and “Microsoft Doesn’t Expect Windows Phone 7 Sales To Catch Up To iOS or Android Any Time Soon,” says this one headline. Glyn Moody links to this other article where Microsoft continues to avoid answering the question about number of sales. Microsoft carries on collecting more patents because Vista Phony 7 [sic] seems as though it’s not much better than the “KIN”, just better advertised. Microsoft explained that it would use patents to monetise mobile phones and what it means by patents is racketeering [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7] (demands without disclosure, backed by threats). In the coming years Microsoft will be more of a leech owing to the broken patent law. It’s already happening.

Mono Under AttachMSFT Spreads Microsoft Languages, Opposition Bullied

Posted in GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Mono, Novell, Ubuntu at 3:39 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Dandelion details

Summary: Microsoft’s and AttachMSFT’s Mono is being pushed into more platforms to extend the reach of Microsoft APIs whilst abuse of critics like Techrights soars again

THE COMPANY known as AttachMSFT [sic] (formerly Novell) is one we’ll write about extensively in days to come. Basically, not much is happening at Novell these days, but patents were passed to Microsoft while both Mono and Moonlight rear their ugly heads again. Mono is spreading .NET to more proprietary platform (and some which are not proprietary as well) or as OMG!Ubuntu! puts it: “Mono on the iPod, for Android. LLVM and insane amounts of really impressive sounding stuff…”

Impressive to who? Microsoft developers? OMG!Ubuntu! is not the only site which helps Mono right now and after a string of posts from Microsoft MVP Miguel de Icaza [1, 2, 3] even Phoronix gives it a lip service, sadly not mentioning that parts of Mono are written by Microsoft and licensed by Microsoft (its own software licences) while more efforts are put into supporting Microsoft projects like IronPython, IronRuby, and F#.

The first feature item mentioned by Miguel was support for new languages by Mono on Linux as well as other supported platforms like Mac OS X. We already reported that F# support is going into Mono after Microsoft open-sourced the language, but other languages to be supported by this open-source stack include IronPython, IronRuby, and UnityScript.

As stated earlier in Identi.ca, be sure to check who’s the Mono booster you come across as many work for AttachMSFT or Microsoft, which literally owns parts of Mono (MS-PL-licensed code). Mono boosters are very rude this week. They attack me personally quite a lot and they are threatening people who criticise Mono and inciting others against them. It’s the same old tactics and AttachMSFT employees are behind it. Yes, AttachMSFT (formerly Novell) and Microsoft have almost 100,000 employees, which makes them an able propaganda machine. Pointing out that Mono is a Trojan horse whose purpose to promote Microsoft’s API (with software patents) is a monumental task when facing this huge army of Mono boosters who systematically coordinate suppression of critics. As we said before, “The Biggest Threat Comes from the Inside” and these people have a different agenda.

“You don’t need to buy the company, just destroy them and then take their business.”

Duncan ‘Dragons Den’ Bannatyne

Microsoft Software Less Secure Than Ever; Time for Governments to Adopt GNU/Linux

Posted in Security at 2:48 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz


Summary: Microsoft’s leaky operating system and other software no longer appear to be suitable for maintaining security, so it is time to move on

ABOUT a week ago we showed that Microsoft had passed Windows source code to TOPSEC, which trains and employs Chinese cyberspies. The United States government was concerned that this reduced national security and in last night’s links we included a report about Chinese espionage (China taking a big lump of sensitive US E-mails).

Next Tuesday, December 14th, is the day when Microsoft will deliver the most bulletins ever. Yes, it’s getting worse, not better. Microsoft Emil says: [via]

According to the Microsoft Security Response Center, Microsoft will issue 17 Security Bulletins addressing 40 vulnerabilities on Tuesday, December 14. It will also host a webcast to address customer questions the following day.

Two of the vulnerabilities are rated “Critical,” 14 are marked “Important,” and the last one is classified as “Moderate.” All of the Critical vulnerabilities earned their rating through a remote code execution impact, meaning a hacker could potentially gain control of an infected machine. At least eight of the 17 patches will require a restart.

For general security and for more crack-proof systems the US ought to use a program whose source code cannot be ‘leaked’; its visibility alone ought to be proof of confidence. On the desktop, companies like Canonical may be having a bit of a shake-up with this high-level departure, but the US government already works with Red Hat (Red Hat’s stock approaches $50), so putting RHEL (desktop) or Fedora on employees’ PCs would be a wise step now that they try to prevent further leaks, conveniently forgetting that data leaks via the networks more routinely than a CD-ROM/DVD drive is used for this purpose (they wrongly assume only action from the inside). Thus far, Cablegate offers proof that Windows is not secure because of Microsoft’s actions and it also shows that the government knows this. Something should be done.

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