Links 1/4/2016: Zenwalk 8.0 Beta 3, pfSense 2.3 Release Candidate

Posted in News Roundup at 8:20 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish



Free Software/Open Source

  • BlazeMeter Adds Open Source Tools for Performance Testing
  • An open-source microprocessor for IoT devices
  • Tech for easier wearable microelectronic devices
  • Thoughts on Leaving the OSI Board

    After six years (two terms), this week marks the end of my time on the Board of Directors of the Open Source Initiative (OSI). While I plan to remain involved with open source issues and with the Board, the end of my service on the Board is a significant personal milestone, so I thought that I would briefly reflect on the past six years for open source, and especially the OSI.

    When I was nominated for the OSI Board in 2010, the Board was a small, select group whose early members made important contributions to the open source community, notably the Open Source Definition and the approval of licenses that conformed to that Definition. The Board’s activities were supported by a couple of corporate donations. Since all of the Board members had “day jobs” that brought in their personal incomes, everyone was quite busy and it was often difficult to make progress on various initiatives. It’s a testament to the hard work of the earliest members of the Board that the OSI was well-recognized as the steward of licenses and the OSD.

  • What happens to a great open source project when its creators are no longer using the tool themselves?

    PANDA, the four-year-old Knight News Challenge-winning newsroom application for storing and analyzing large data sets, still has a respectable community of users, but could now use a new longterm caretaker.

  • Web Browsers

  • Databases

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

    • I hate Microsoft Office

      Here’s an example: The icon to delete emails in Outlook is a swooshy “χ” icon. That seems out of step with the smooth appearance that Microsoft seems to prefer. The swooshy “χ” is probably supposed to make Office look cool, but to me it just looks old. Like, that was a neat idea in the 1990s or early 2000s, but today that’s just clutter.

  • CMS

  • Pseudo-Open Source (Openwashing)

  • BSD

    • UbuntuBSD

      Regardless of your position on the systemd debate, projects such as the UbuntuBSD distribution offer a wider range of options to the FOSS community at large. And, there are cases where a BSD kernel will provide better performance than Linux.

    • [pfSense] 2.3 Release Candidate now available!

      We are proud to announce pfSense® software version 2.3 Release Candidate is now available!

      The most significant changes in this release are a rewrite of the webGUI utilizing Bootstrap, and the underlying system being converted entirely to FreeBSD pkg (including the base system and kernel). The pkg conversion enables us to update pieces of the system individually going forward, rather than the monolithic updates of the past.

    • LLVM Adds Intel Lakemont CPU Support

      The LLVM compiler infrastructure now has support for Intel’s Lakemont processor.

      Lakemont is the codename for the Quark processors that include the Quark X1000 SoC. The Lakemont hardware has been available for a while now but continues to be used in different applications and Intel continues improving its support.

  • Public Services/Government

    • Critics Say White House’s Open Source Software Policy Doesn’t Go Far Enough

      Members of 18F, the General Services Administration’s digital consultancy that shares all its code on public repository Github, argue that a more comprehensive, “open source by default” policy would allow agencies to reuse code instead of constantly re-developing it. Coding in the open would also let developers gather input from the public about potential glitches.

      Open source development “helps to encourage good documentation and coding practices,” an 18F statement posted on GitHub said. “Everyone is aware and following processes for open information from day one. There is no just-before-launch, last minute review of everything.”

    • France unveils source code of income tax application

      France has officially opened the source code of the fiscal calculator used by the French fiscal administration to calculate the income taxes of individuals in France. Taxes for businesses are not included in the code.

    • Election Tech: How big data pioneers use open source technology to win elections

      National Field’s PHP application, MySQL backend, Node.js technology was used during the Obama reelection campaign in 2012, and acquired by and integrated with NGP VAN in 2013. Today, the product is used up-ticket and down by every major Democratic candidate, and their technologies have been embraced by the GOP and several non-partisan data brokers as well.

    • MIT Media Lab Goes Open Source, And Doesn’t Forget To FLOSS

      The MIT Media Lab, a tech innovation center that has has a hand in numerous tech related products over the years, including Guitar Hero has revealed that going forward, the way it deals with its approach to software releases is to fundamentally change.

  • Licensing/Legal

    • Fair Source licensing is the worst thing to happen to open source-definitely maybe

      Fair Source attempts to bastardize open source to ensure companies get paid.


      This seems true, but is actually false. Fair Source really offers none of the benefits of open source precisely because of that “ability to charge for the software.” While free software licensing (e.g., GNU General Public License) attempts to force freedom on downstream developers, true open source basically says, “Take this software, use it and improve it (or not), and license the resulting product as you wish.”

  • Programming/Development

    • Contribution graph can be harmful to contributors

      A common well-being issue in open-source communities is the tendency of people to over-commit. Many contributors care deeply, at the risk of saying yes too often harming their well-being. Open-source communities are especially at risk, because many contributors work next to a full-time job.

      The contribution graph and the statistics on it, prominent on everyone’s profile, basically rewards people for doing work on as many different days as possible, generally making more contributions, and making contributions on multiple days in a row without a break.


  • Kyiv Smart City: how Kiev wants to become one of the smartest cities in Europe

    This project is part of a more global project, called Kyiv Smart City, the goal of which is to transform the Ukrainian capital into a smart city, comparable with the top five smart cities in Europe: Paris, London, Barcelona, Copenhagen and Vienna, as mentioned in the description of the project.

  • How People Lost Their Jobs Due To Google’s April Fool’s Day Prank

    Google has killed one of its April Fool’s Day pranks as it caused outrage among Gmail users. According to various complaints and online posts, people lost their jobs and harmed professional relationships.

  • Health/Nutrition

    • Will Osborne’s Manchester ‘devolution’ fall flat on its face?

      Today, Manchester becomes the first English region to “take control of its health spending”, supposedly. But what do patients, NHS campaigners and junior doctors think?

    • Government ‘Ignored’ Environmental Threats When Approving GE Salmon, Lawsuit Claims

      Risk of escape is high on the list of worries for the environmental groups that filed the lawsuit. The fish are raised in land-based pens now, but if the industry takes off, there could be many more GE salmon being raised around the world, in different kinds of environments. The groups are concerned about “the risk that GE salmon will escape from the facilities where they are manufactured or grown and interbreed with wild endangered salmon, compete with them for food and space, or pass on infectious diseases; the interrelated impacts to salmon fisheries and the social and economic well-being of those who depend on them; and the risks to ecosystems from the introduction of an invasive species.”

    • Not an April Fool joke: UK pharma giant won’t patent its drugs in poorer countries

      The UK pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) has announced that it will not be routinely patenting its drugs around the world. Instead of applying for patents on its medicines in all regions, it will now take into account the economic development of the country before deciding whether to seek monopoly protection there. As a result, a poorer country can encourage local manufacturers to create cheaper generic versions of GSK’s products, and thus provide them to a greater number of its population, potentially saving many lives.

      Specifically, GSK says: “For Least Developed Countries (LDCs) and Low Income Countries (LICs), GSK will not file patents for its medicines, so as to give clarity and confidence to generic companies seeking to manufacture and supply generic versions of GSK medicines in those countries.”

      For slightly wealthier countries, “GSK will file for patents but will seek to offer and agree licences to allow supplies of generic versions of its medicines for 10 years. GSK intends to seek a small royalty on sales in those countries. This offer will apply even for those countries that move out of [Lower Middle Income Country] status due to increased economic growth during this period.” This should allow generic versions to be produced for a decade even in nations whose economies become more developed.

  • Security

  • Defence/Aggression

    • Reports: State Troopers, Civilians Shot At Virginia Bus Station
    • At Least 14 Dead In Overpass Collapse In India
    • How US-Backed War on Syria Helped ISIS

      By funneling TOW missiles and other weapons to Syrian jihadists for their “regime change” war, President Obama facilitated the rise of the Islamic State with the terrorist blowback now hitting Europe, says Daniel Lazare.

    • Americans Have Been Accidentally Shooting Themselves for Three Centuries

      Bad luck? Sure, in part. But this is really about stupidity on the part of adults. Today, thousands of Americans are shot accidentally each year, and that doesn’t even count the collateral damage—stray bullets that take out a toddler or some other innocent, resulting in an assault or homicide charge—nor does it factor in our 20,000-plus annual gun suicides. All of these unhappy accidents, as it turns out, are very, very costly.

    • The Ultimate Trial of Israeli Society

      Last Thursday, March 24th, an Israel defense force (IDF) soldier was filmed executing a wounded Palestinian man alleged to have carried out a stabbing attack against IDF soldiers in the Tel Rumeida neighborhood of Hebron. The videographer responsible for the filming is Imad Abu Shamsiya, a Palestinian shoemaker who has since received death threats and intimidation from extreme right-wing Israeli settlers with the prospect of a potential lawsuit. Though the incident is part of a wave of extrajudicial killings of Palestinians carried out by Israeli soldiers, this particular case is different. Here, the film unambiguously shows that the wounded Palestinian man did not present a danger to his surrounding. Quite shockingly, not only does the film implicate the executioner; it also shows his IDF comrades as completely unfazed by the incident, including medical personnel. What’s more, the soldier has received a wave of public support that politicians from the right-wing have seized as an opportunity to further erode the moral fabric of Israeli society in a bid to serve their political and ideological interests.

    • U.S. Troops on Russia’s Borders

      Official Washington’s hype about “Russian aggression” has cloaked a U.S. military buildup on Russia’s borders, possibly increasing risks of escalation and even world war, explains ex-CIA analyst Paul R. Pillar.

    • Caveat Emptor, Canada: What the Acquisition of Lethal Drones Will Bring

      Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has been shopping around for lethal drones for the Royal Canadian Air Force. The prospective acquisition is being downplayed as intended primarily for surveillance purposes. Of course, that’s how it always begins. The first step toward joining the bloody ranks of the avid drone killers – the United States, Israel and, increasingly, Britain – is obtaining the means to conduct surveillance. But these sophisticated machines were developed for use by the military, which is why they have the modular capacity to be armed. As their names have always implied, Predator and Reaper drones can be used not only for surveillance but also to kill by remote control. Snap on a couple of Hellfire missiles, and you’re good to go.

    • The Facade of Israel is Cracking

      For many more years than any intelligent person would want to count, Israel was the sacred cow of the United States. From its violent, bloody, genocidal inception that involved the ethnic cleansing of at least 750,000 Palestinians, and the murder of another 10,000, right through to the illegal, immoral occupation of the West Bank and blockade (aka occupation) of the Gaza Strip, Israel, in the view of U.S. governance and politics, could do no wrong. Anyone who dared to criticize Israel’s many crimes was accused of anti-Semitism; as Dr. Norman Finkelstein said, “whenever Israel faces a public relations debacle, its apologists sound the alarm that a ‘new anti-Semitism’ is upon us”. In the past, if a Jew, such as Dr. Finkelstein, was critical of Israel, Zionists raised the cry that he was ‘a self-hating Jew’, and U.S. politicians bought that ridiculous line. As a result, Israel became the beneficiary of the bulk of U.S. foreign aid, and has relied on the U.S. for years for protection from international accountability for its crimes, with the U.S always happy to veto any United Nations resolution condemning Israeli violations of human rights and international law.

    • Derailing Peace Deal in Colombia

      A resurgence of drug-connected right-wing terrorism in Colombia has undercut a historic peace deal between the government and the main leftist rebel group, writes Jonathan Marshall.

    • Obama in Arabia

      Like his predecessors, President Obama is putting cozy ties with the Saudi royals ahead of telling the truth to the American people about the Saudi role in 9/11, writes 9/11 widow Kristen Breitweiser.

      Why does President Obama think it’s okay for 15 Arabs (and four of their friends) to come into our country, hijack our planes, crash them into our buildings, and brutally kill 3,000 innocent people? Because those 15 Arabs were Saudis, that’s why. And, Saudis are special. Saudis are apparently allowed to get away with murder — or at least the financing of it.

      I am a 9/11 widow. My husband Ron was killed while he was working at his desk for Fiduciary Trust Company on the 94th floor of Tower 2. Ron was 39 years old, I was 30, and our daughter was two. I watched the horror unfold on live worldwide television as I stood in my kitchen speaking to Ron. Moments later, I watched Flight 175 slice into his building, exactly where he stood on the other end of the line talking to me.


      There are 28 pages of the Joint Inquiry of Congress (an investigation into the U.S. government intelligence failures prior to 9/11) that have remained classified and hidden away from the American public by both the Bush and Obama Administrations. These 28 pages allegedly prove that the Saudis had a controlling hand in funding the 9/11 attacks that killed 3,000 innocent people.

    • What Do Terrorists Want?

      It’s not hard to fathom why officials and pundits do not acknowledge the full story of terrorism: it would draw attention to what the U.S. government and allied states have long been doing to people in the Muslim world. Nearly all Americans seem to think it’s a sheer coincidence that terrorism is most likely to be committed by people who profess some form of Islam and that the U.S. military has for decades been bombing, droning, occupying, torturing, etc. in multiple Islamic countries. Or perhaps they think U.S.-inflicted violence is just a defensive response to earlier terrorism. (I might be giving people too much credit by assuming they even know the U.S. government is doing any of this.)

  • Transparency/Investigative Reporting

    • Who’s the April Fool: Trying Out the Hillary Defenses

      “So, you know why I pulled you over, ma’am, right?”

      “Oh, I have no idea at all officer,” Hillary said.

      “You were speeding. Clocked you right here.”

      “I didn’t do anything wrong,” Hillary said.

      “Well, you did. You broke the law, you did something unsafe, you endangered others, you set a poor example for your whole organization, you compromised security.”

      “Well, everybody does it,” Hillary said.

      “No, they don’t. Most people drive safely.”

    • IMF Internal Meeting Predicts Greek ‘Disaster’, Threatens to Leave Troika

      Today, 2nd April 2016, WikiLeaks publishes the records of a 19 March 2016 teleconference between the top two IMF officials in charge of managing the Greek debt crisis – Poul Thomsen, the head of the IMF’s European Department, and Delia Velkouleskou, the IMF Mission Chief for Greece. The IMF anticipates a possible Greek default co-inciding with the United Kingdom’s referendum on whether it should leave the European Union (‘Brexit’).

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife/Nature

    • Indonesian government threatens to deport Leonardo DiCaprio for palm oil criticism

      The Indonesian government has threatened to deport Leonardo DiCaprio after the Oscar-winning actor and film-maker made critical statements about the country’s palm oil industry during a visit.

      DiCaprio, an environmental campaigner, landed in Indonesia on 26 March from Japan. On Tuesday he posted a photograph to his Instagram highlighting the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation’s plans with local partners to establish a “mega-fauna sanctuary” in the Leuser rainforest ecosystem, a lowland Sumatran national park where palm oil plantations, mining, logging and other developments are endangering local populations of Sumatran elephants, orangutans, rhinos and tigers.

    • British Columbia’s Carbon Tax Has Been So Successful That Businesses Want To Increase It

      A carbon tax may be a controversial topic in the United States, but in one Canadian province, this eight-year-old policy has been such a success that on Wednesday more than 100 businesses said they support a tax increase.

      In a letter addressed to Premier Christy Clark, who governs the province of British Columbia, more than 150 companies said they back a plan to increase the carbon tax by $10 — about $7.70 U.S. — per metric ton a year starting in July 2018, an idea the government-sponsored Climate Leadership Team unveiled earlier this year.

    • Cantarow and Levy, Could Nuclear Disaster Come to America?

      Since the United States used nuclear weapons on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in August 1945, nuclear power has always had a fearsome aspect. In the 1950s, the administration of President Dwight Eisenhower began promoting “the peaceful atom” in an attempt to take some of the sting out of atomic power’s bad rep. (As part of that project, Eisenhower helped then-ally the Shah of Iran set up a “peaceful” nuclear program, the starting point for Washington’s more modern nuclear conflicts with that country.) Unfortunately, as we’ve been reminded, from Three Mile Island to Chernobyl to Fukushima, there is ultimately a side to nuclear power that couldn’t be less “peaceful,” even in a peacetime setting. As you think about the Indian Point nuclear power plant, the subject of today’s post, and its long history of problems and crises that only seem to be compounding, keep in mind how close Tokyo came to utter catastrophe and then think about the vast New York metropolitan area and what any of us would be able to do other than shelter in place if disaster were someday to strike up the Hudson River.

    • Environmentalists Call For No New Offshore Drilling, Period

      When the Obama administration scrapped leasing plans for drilling off the southeast Atlantic coast earlier this month, environmentalists praised the move, saying it was a win for the environment and the fight against climate change. But now some environmentalists and indigenous organizations from coastal regions say that’s not enough, and they’re calling on President Obama to use his executive power to end all new fossil fuel extraction in federal waters.

      In a petition filed Tuesday, more than 45 groups led by the Center for Biological Diversity say that ending offshore drilling in the Outer Continental Shelf is an important step to limit global warming, as agreed to by countries in Paris last year.

      “We saw the president react to the opposition to offshore drilling in the Atlantic and think that our public policy should be set forth by … the public demanding further action to address climate change,” Miyoko Sakashita, oceans director at the Center for Biological Diversity, told ThinkProgress.

  • Finance


      In the list of the world’s great companies, Unaoil is nowhere to be seen. But for the best part of the past two decades, the family business from Monaco has systematically corrupted the global oil industry, distributing many millions of dollars worth of bribes on behalf of corporate behemoths including Samsung, Rolls-Royce, Halliburton and Australia’s own Leighton Holdings.

    • China Hits Steel Made In UK With 46% Levy

      Beijing’s decision to clamp down on foreign imports while dumping cheap steel in the EU comes at a bad time for the UK Government.

    • Sen. Elizabeth Warren Calls for Total Overhaul of Student Loan System

      ‘Five simple principles. Everyone in government who is serious about standing up for the tens of millions of student loan borrowers in this country should embrace them.’

    • New York Reaches Deal to Raise Minimum Wage to $15

      Not to be outdone by its perennial rival on the west, New York announced on Thursday it had reached a deal to raise the minimum wage in New York City to $15 by 2018. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo hailed the agreement as the “best plan the state has produced in decades.”

      “We’re leaders in economic justice,” he said in an announcement outlining the state’s budget.

      But unlike California, where lawmakers approved a measure to hike its statewide minimum to $15, the Empire State failed to reach an agreement on a statewide minimum. Instead a hike will go into effect regionally: Areas outside of New York City, including New York’s wealthier suburbs in Westchester and Long Island, will have six years to implement the wage boost. The minimum wage in northern regions that are generally less affluent will only go up to $12.50 by 2021.

    • Most Americans Won’t Make $15 an Hour for Five Years—but Why Not Now, Like in This City?

      Newly adopted $15 minimum wage laws have been unveiled with great fanfare and media coverage. But lost in the headlines is the reality that because of phase-in schedules, workers won’t actually see $15/hour in their pay for three, five or even seven years—at which point the buying power will have been eroded by rent hikes and the rising cost of living.

    • The Clinton Myth and the Strange Case of Donald Trump

      The transition from Condoleezza Rice to Hillary was, all things considered, a step down. American foreign policy remained about the same, but at least Rice had no time for “humanitarian interveners” of the Samantha Power type.

    • The real poison pill in the TPP

      Canadians have many reasons to be concerned about the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a massive international trade agreement that, if ratified, will result in restrictive new rules governing our daily lives, from how we use the Internet, to how much we pay for medicine.

      We already know the TPP will extend copyright terms for decades, keeping valuable cultural content out of the hands of new artists and the public. We know it will hamstring Canadian innovation, with top Canadian tech entrepreneurs telling us how it locks in the economic advantage U.S. firms already enjoy in the intellectual property sector.

      But the real poison pill in the TPP lies in its “investor-state dispute settlement” mechanism, or ISDS. Economists from all sides of the political spectrum have warned about how the TPP’s ISDS rules would allow foreign conglomerates to challenge our domestic laws and subject Canada to multi-million-dollar lawsuits.

    • Rio de Janeiro’s public health system on verge of collapse

      None of Brazil’s 27 states have found themselves in such a dire financial situation in the country’s recent history – even if the public health sector has been facing multiple chronic difficulties throughout the country.

      Two health systems co-exist: the free and universal public sector system called the SUS (Sistema unico de saúde, designed along the lines of the French social security system) and the private sector financed by expensive health insurance schemes that 20 per cent of the population pay into to make sure they are taken care of more quickly.

      In Brazil public health funding remains relatively low: only 4 per cent of GDP as compared to 11 per cent in France. Government at all levels (the Federal State, the federalised states, districts and municipalities) contribute to the health budget.

    • Underpaid in the UK? The state probably isn’t going to help you

      The new £7.20 rate is still well below the real living wage — based on the cost of living — of £8.25 an hour. It’s only for over-25s, with younger people stuck on the old rate. Shareholders, CEOs and senior management of the corporations that dominate the economy will continue to accrue bumper payouts. Companies including Tesco, Wilko and B+Q have already cut other benefits to mitigate the impact of the new rate, while others are planning lay-offs.

      For the hundreds of thousands of workers currently paid below the minimum wage, its increase will mean little. Recent governments have shown little inclination to crack down on employers who are illegally underpaying their staff. The present one, for all its rhetoric, doesn’t seem set to change.

    • Chase Freezes Guy’s Bank Account For Paying His Dogwalker For Walking Dash The Dog

      It wasn’t so long ago that we were discussing the problems with the United States Treasury Department’s list of scary names and how it was being used to prevent completely innocent folks from using online services. The ultimate point of that post was that casting broad nets in which to turn suspicious eyes without applying any kind of checks or common sense was a recipe for calling a whole lot of people terrorists that aren’t actually terrorists.

    • Chase freezes man’s bank account because his dog’s name, ‘Dash,’ looked like ‘Daesh’

      The processors at Chase Bank thought that Dash might be a sneaky way of spelling Daesh (which is the mocking, insulting nickname used by critics to refer to “ISIS”), decided that this was possible terrorist money-laundering, and stopped the payment, froze his account, and notified the Treasury Department that he was a suspected terrorist.

      It’s hard to know what’s stupidest about this: that the bank thought that Daesh was the kind of thing that a terrorist sympathizer would use to help mark out laundered payments, that the bank subsequently insisted that “this is an important part of ensuring that crime does not filter through the US banking system,” or that Francis himself thinks that being put out and branded as a terrorist somehow made him safer.

    • Bank freezes online payment over dog’s ‘terrorist-sounding’ name

      Bruce Francis, who has multiple sclerosis, was transferring money from his Chase Bank account to his dogwalker and he put the 9-year-old pitbull’s moniker “Dash” in the memo line.

      Bank officials thought Dash sounded a little bit too much like Daesh, the Arabic term for the self-described Islamic State, and canceled the payment.

    • Elizabeth Warren Warns Banks Are Lying About Upcoming Rule Change, Potentially Breaking The Law

      On Thursday, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) sent a letter to the head of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) accusing banks of lying about the pending rule requiring financial advisers to put clients’ interests ahead of their own, thus potentially violating securities laws.

    • Elizabeth Warren Slams Donald Trump’s Lies About Being a Business Success

      Fresh off of her delightful Twitter takedown listing all the ways she believes Donald Trump is a “loser,” Sen. Elizabeth Warren appeared on the Late Show on Wednesday to shred the Republican frontrunner’s self-touted reputation as a successful businessman.

      “The truth is that he inherited a fortune from his father, he kept it going by cheating and defrauding people, and then he takes his creditors through Chapter 11,” Warren told host Stephen Colbert.

      “We have an economy that is in real trouble,” she added. “But when the economy is in this kind of trouble, calling on Donald Trump for help is like if your house is on fire, calling an arsonist to come help out.”

    • The Lies of Neoliberal Economics (or How America Became a Nation of Sharecroppers)

      Mortgages, with many houses now underwater because of 2008. I want to look first at the self-identified liberal class within the Democratic Party, including Barack Obama. It often uses the language of economic justice, and will even chastise Wall Street rhetorically, but has been as committed to this neoliberal project as the Republicans.

    • A Chicago Teacher Explains Why She’s Willing to Risk Arrest in Order to Strike Against the Destruction of Public Schools

      We got to this point because CPS has been starving our schools for years. It has been death by a thousand cuts. But recently it’s felt more like, I don’t know, chopping off our arms. We’ve seen over the years more layoffs, class sizes increasing, cuts to counsellors and clinicians, our schools being closed, private schools and charters opening up. It’s making the learning and working conditions very difficult in the schools.

      Just this school year, there’s been so many cuts to our schools that it’s hard to keep track of them. At the beginning of the year, there were millions of dollars in cuts to special ed. Our students with disabilities weren’t getting their services that were required by law; parents and teachers and community groups had to go fight the Board of Ed with lawyers to get services back.

      Then there were more special ed cuts in the middle of the year, then more general layoffs. A month or two ago, there were even more cuts. My school lost $100,000. Our budgets were already bare bones, and the principals had to cut even more.

      And then just two weeks ago, we had another round of cuts. They froze all the funds; my school lost another $80,000. For my school, they’ve cut almost all the before- and after-school programs—intervention programs for kids who were struggling, all types of clubs—plus most of our substitutes.

    • Why The Major Media Marginalize Bernie

      “Bernie did well last weekend but he can’t possibly win the nomination,” a friend told me for what seemed like the thousandth time, attaching an article from the Washington Post that shows how far behind Bernie remains in delegates.

      Wait a minute. Last Tuesday, Sanders won 78 percent of the vote in Idaho and 79 percent in Utah. This past Saturday, he took 82 percent of the vote in Alaska, 73 percent in Washington, and 70 percent in Hawaii.

      In fact, since mid-March, Bernie has won six out of the seven Democratic primary contests with an average margin of victory of 40 points. Those victories have given him roughly a one hundred additional pledged delegates.

      As of now, Hillary Clinton has 54.9 percent of the pledged delegates to Bernie Sanders’s 45.1 percent.That’s still a sizable gap – but it doesn’t make Bernie Sanders’s candidacy an impossibility.

      Moreover, there are 22 states to go with nearly 45 percent of pledged delegates still up for grabs – and Sanders has positive momentum in almost all of them.

      Hillary Clinton’s lead in superdelegates may vanish if Bernie gains a majority of pledged delegates.

      Bernie is outpacing Hillary Clinton in fundraising. In March, he raised $39 million. In February, he raised $42 million (from 1.4 million contributions, averaging $30 each), compared to Hillary Clinton’s $30 million. In January he raised $20 million to her $15 million.

    • Bernie’s Right. Wall Street’s Business Model Really Is Fraud.

      Fraud is an essential part of Wall Street’s DNA. A 2015 survey, commissioned by law firm Labaton Sucharow, found that a deeply immoral culture had taken root among British and American bankers.

  • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

    • Bernie Sanders Flipping Presidential Script, Turning Democratic Race Into Epic Contest

      If not for a certain Manhattan billionaire, Bernie Sanders’ surprising strength and Hillary Clinton’s relative weakness would be the big political story of the year.

      Democrats are fortunate that bloody insurrection is roiling the Republican Party. Clinton—the likely Democratic nominee—will almost surely face either Donald Trump, who is toxic to most of the electorate, or an alternative chosen at the GOP convention and seen by Trumpistas as a usurper.

    • Elizabeth Warren: Electing Donald Trump President Is Like Calling an Arsonist to Put Out a Fire

      Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., told Stephen Colbert on Wednesday that Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump got where he is by “cheating and defrauding people.”

      “He is not a business success,” she said on Colbert’s “The Late Show,” citing disasters that punctuate Trump’s professional life and the wealth he inherited from his father. “He is a business loser.”

    • Hillary Clinton’s Support Among Nonwhite Voters Has Collapsed

      On February 27th, Hillary Clinton led Bernie Sanders among African-American voters by 52 points.

      By March 26th, she led Sanders among African-Americans by just nine points.

      And on Thursday, Public Policy Polling, a widely respected polling organization, released a poll showing that Sanders leads Clinton among African-American voters in Wisconsin by 11 points.

    • Bernie Leads Hillary in Wisconsin, Slams Wall Street and NAFTA

      Democratic candidate Bernie Sanders currently has a 4-point lead over Hillary Clinton among Wisconsin voters. Of likely Wisconsin Democratic primary voters, 49.2 percent chose Sanders, while 44.9 percent went with Clinton. Five and a half percent are still undecided.

    • ‘The power to create a new world is… in our hands’

      DR JILL STEIN IS RUNNING FOR THE UNITED States presidency on the Green Party ticket. This will not be her first attempt. In 2012, Jill Stein’s Green Party ticket—with Cheri Honkala, the advocate for the homeless—won half a million votes. But running on a “third party” ticket in the U.S. is not easy. The two major parties, Democratic and Republican, keep a firm hold on the political process. It is hard to get on the ballot in all 50 States of the U.S., and it is impossible to join the candidates of the two major parties at their presidential debates. In fact, when Jill Stein and Cheri Honkala tried to enter the debate venue in New York during the 2012 election, they were both arrested. But arrests are not unusual for Jill Stein. During the 2012 election, she was arrested at a Philadelphia sit-in against home foreclosures and she was arrested while offering support to environmental activists in Texas who had camped out against the Keystone XL pipeline. Activism is the measure of Jill Stein’s politics.

    • Foreign Money Is Flowing Into U.S. Elections, Alito’s Lying Lips Notwithstanding

      IN HIS 2010 State of the Union address, Barack Obama attacked the then-new Citizens United Supreme Court decision for making it possible for U.S. elections to be bankrolled by “foreign entities.”

    • Is Hillary Clinton Running Away From Political Reality?

      As this new Wisconsin poll shows: Sanders leads Clinton 49% to 43%. Sanders leads among all African-Americans 51% to 40%. Sanders leads among 18 to 45 year olds 65% to 28%.]

    • “I’m Sick of It”: Climate Activist Touches Nerve, Clinton Responds with Finger

      ‘Clinton needs to listen to the people, not fossil fuel interests,’ says Greenpeace campaigner.

    • Hmm, That’s Strange… Why Would Clinton Use Trump Abortion Remarks to Attack Sanders?

      Even though Bernie Sanders immediately took to Twitter and called Donald Trump “shameful” for his comments on Wednesday regarding “punishment” for women who would have abortions, Hillary Clinton is now using the incident as an opportunity to attack her Democratic rival by suggesting to voters that Sanders does not take the issue of women’s choice seriously enough.

      “Last night, Sen. Sanders agreed Donald Trump’s comments were shameful,” Clinton said during a campaign rally in Purchase, New York on Thursday. “Then he said they were a distraction from the, and I quote, ‘serious discussion about serious issues facing America.’”

    • The Clash of Trump, Bernie and Hillary Is About to Create a Huge Political Circus in New York
  • Censorship/Free Speech

    • Turkish President Comes To The US, Pretends That It Can Silence And Attack The Press Like It Does At Home

      We’ve written a whole bunch about the incredibly thin-skinned and litigious President of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Erdogan took his show on the road to the US this week, and apparently that included pretending that he can treat press in the US as bad as he does at home. Erdogan spoke at the Brookings Institution yesterday, and there were protestors outside. That’s not that surprising, but rather than doing what basically anyone else does in that situation and ignore the protestors,

    • Removing ‘Vaxxed’ From Tribeca Festival Is Common Sense, Not Censorship

      On March 21, the Tribeca Film Festival announced its 2016 lineup. The festival, which runs from April 13 – 24, was started in 2001 as a way to revitalize lower Manhattan after the September 11, 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center. Now in its fifteenth year, TFF has garnered a reputation of celebrating independent filmmaking and storytelling through diverse and emerging voices.

      This year’s lineup, however, found the festival and one of its co-founders, Robert De Niro, caught in a firestorm of accusations of promoting lies and censorship.

      Scheduled to be screened on the last day of the festival was the documentary film “Vaxxed: From Cover-up to Controversy” by disgraced anti-vaccination zealot Andrew Wakefield. The film parrots the long disproven myth that vaccinations, particularly the MMR vaccine, causes autism. The theory was created by Wakefield who in 1998, then a gastroenterologist, published a fraudulent study suggesting the link.

    • MPAA Actually Steps Up To Defend Free Speech (Really!); Gets Attacked For It

      And “conduct, not merely speech” is the crux of the MPAA’s opposition to the bill. The MPAA doesn’t want revenge porn to go unpunished, but it only wants actual revenge porn punished — not everything else that might get pulled in by the broad wording and lack of a malicious intent requirement. Franks decision to excise the very element the MPAA was concerned about is completely disingenuous, as it places her on the side of the Supreme Court, even when the Supreme Court doesn’t agree with her assertions.

    • Today is your last day to comment on the Internet censorship through copyright abuse!

      Evan from Fight for the Future writes, “Hey Internet! Ever since SOPA we’ve all known that copyright laws have a huge impact on the Internet, free speech, innovation, creativity.”

    • How an underground hip hop artist and his book club threaten Angola’s regime

      This week 17 Angolan activists received jail sentences for participating in a book club. Here’s why.

    • Our Comment On DMCA Takedowns: Let’s Return To First Principles (And The First Amendment)

      As mentioned earlier, today’s the day to file comments with the Copyright Office over the DMCA’s notice and takedown provisions. We’ve already discussed the recent set of studies showing that there are way too many bogus takedown notices that are clogging the system, creating real problems for small service providers and censoring free speech. We also wrote about the patently ridiculous filing by the legacy players in the music industry, who whined about how the public is enjoying more content than ever before (which, you know, is the stated purpose of copyright law), but they’re upset that their business models are now obsolete. Finally, we wrote about the fantastic filing from Automattic, which gives many more real world examples of how the takedown process is abused (which the legacy industry pretends isn’t true, because people don’t file counternotices).

    • More Evidence That Tons Of DMCA Takedowns Are Bad News… And That People Are Afraid To Counternotice

      Earlier this week, we wrote about a major new study that revealed that a ton of DMCA takedown notices are clearly faulty, and how that shows just how messed up the DMCA’s notice-and-takedown provisions are in giving tremendous incentives to send notices with absolutely no punishment for filing bogus takedowns. The legacy music industry and its supporters keep claiming that the fact that there are so few counternotices is evidence that there’s almost no abuse. In fact, in the legacy music industry filing we wrote about earlier today, they even had the gall to claim that the real abuse is in the counternotices themselves.

    • Want To Tell The Copyright Office To Stop Abusive DMCA Takedowns? Here’s How

      So, today’s been DMCA 512 takedown day here at Techdirt. Today’s the day that comments are due at the Copyright Office concerning the effectiveness (or not) of the DMCA’s notice and takedown provisions. And, of course, no one’s entirely happy with the DMCA, but they’re unhappy in very different ways. We wrote about the legacy music industry whining that Google has built a successful service while they failed to adapt themselves. We wrote about Automattic reinforcing how DMCA takedowns are regularly abused to try to censor content (and how people are afraid to counternotice), and we wrote about our own filing, highlighting how the abuse of the DMCA process raises questions about how the current setup is Constitutional.

    • Slutface change name to SLØTFACE, share new single
    • Social media censorship forces Slutface to change name
    • Norwegian Band Slutface Changes Name Due to ‘Social Media Censorship’
    • China’s latest move to strengthen its grip on the Internet
    • China Domain Proposals Prompt Web Crackdown Fears
  • Privacy/Surveillance

  • Civil Rights/Policing

  • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

    • Save The Internet: Final Consultation for the sake of Net Neutrality in Europe

      The BEREC is set to complete its guidelines on August 30, 2016, hereby settling the fate of an open and competitive Internet in Europe (the “Net neutrality”). It is therefore necessary that the principles laid down in EU legislation or in the “Open Internet Order” in the United States do not stay just wishful thinking: A failure of Net Neutrality in Europe would have dramatic consequences for citizens and European companies.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Copyrights

      • 50,000 People Protest DMCA Abuse, “Crash” Government Server

        A campaign launched by Fight for the Future and popular YouTube channel ChannelAwesome to protest DMCA abuse has generated 50,000 responses to the U.S. Copyright Office in less than 24 hours. The public interest is so overwhelming that the Government’s servers “crashed” under the heavy load.

      • Artists, Music Industry Urge Reform Of “Broken” DMCA

        Arguing that the copyright law in the United States intended to protect creative works while allowing access by the next creators is “broken”, hundreds of top artists, songwriters, managers and music associations are urging reforms to the law. Top performers like Katy Perry and Christina Aguilera joined the call.

      • RIAA: How Dare The Internet Use The DMCA That We Wrote To Build Useful Services!

        As we’ve mentioned, today is the day that comments are due to the Copyright Office on the effectiveness (or not) of Section 512 of the DMCA, better known as the “notice and takedown” safe harbor provisions. We’ll be posting the details of our own filing at some point (possibly not until Monday as we’re still finalizing a few things), but some of the other filings are starting to filter out, including a fairly astounding 97-page document from a bunch of legacy music industry organizations (about half of which is the actual filing, with the rest being appendices), including the RIAA, ASCAP, AFM, NMPA, SoundExchange and more. It’s basically every organization that represents the way the industry used to work — and the document reads like an angry polemic against the internet. It would have been much shorter, if they just wrote “our business used to be much better when we had more control and less competition — and we never bothered to adapt, so fuck Google and all those internet companies — and let’s change the DMCA to punish them and magically bring back the good old days.”

David Kappos Whines About the Supreme Court Shutting the Door on Many Software Patents

Posted in America, Europe, IBM, Law, Microsoft, Patents at 4:10 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

From USPTO Director to Lobbyist for Patent Maximalism and Software Patents?

Fordham IP Conference
No comment necessary

Summary: Reports from the Fordham IP Conference serve to show nefarious bias which serves not only patent lawyers and their large clients (like Microsoft or IBM) but also software patents (which Microsoft and IBM have turned into their business model as sales continue to nosedive)

THE Fordham IP Conference (i.e. stuffed and/or staffed with lawyers, no public interest representatives) has just ended and there was material in it which related to the EPO, the UPC, and software patents in Europe (to be covered separately). Unless you are very wealthy, you’re unlikely to have been able to attend and unless you are a patent maximalist, you wouldn’t have had a chance to speak there (just listen). It’s an echo chamber, a meeting behind closed doors (almost), a conspiracy or a think tank (to put it politely). It’s one of several such events (in big and overpriced cities) which are efforts to collectively shape the law and influence policy. Output/reports are like a think tank’s bit of “research”. Dissenting voices are not allowed, let alone invited to offer input.

“It’s one of several such events (in big and overpriced cities) which are efforts to collectively shape the law and influence policy.”Right now software patents in Europe are a big deal because the US basically pushes back against such patents, much to the chagrin of patent lawyers who profited from them (usually at the expense of programmers like myself and millions of others).

David Kappos, formerly of USPTO and IBM (now increasingly notorious for aggression with software patents), is acting as though he’s above a Supreme ruling or as if SCOTUS is wrong (because of his own financial interests). One must recall what Kappos did after leaving the USPTO (now a patent profiteering person, who is still pushing for software patents).

“David Kappos – not a fan of the Supreme Court’s decisions on section 101,” says the caption below his face. We will cover the latest developments regarding section 101 some time in the weekend.

According to this outline of the event, composed by a proponent of software patents, Alice upsets Kappos:

In terms of Supreme Court decisions, especially the CLS v Alice Bank decision, David said that it is impossible to make sense of the Supreme Court jurisprudence on section 101. In trying to make sense of section 101, the PTO is trapped by a set of Supreme Court decisions which are incomprehensible. That is has been the architect of PTO’s real struggle to get to grips with patentable subject matter. Judge O’Malley agreed that it is difficult to understand what is and is not left in terms of patentable subject matter, but this challenge has led to many more creative arguments from lawyers who try to distinguish their inventions from the realm of a CLS v Alice Bank situation. Sir Robin chimed in stating that in the real world the patent office does issue bad patents – it is inevitable This is because its a one-sided examination process conducted by an examiner who may not have all of the prior art before him or her and who is generally under-resourced. You can see this in Europe where an opposition takes 10-15 years to decide whether a patent is valid. This is a broken system. The America Invents Act, to Sir Robin, looks great in comparison as it provides a quicker, more efficient regime to address validity. It also provides certainty, which is hugely important.

David agreed about the inevitably of some patents being wrongly granted. In particular, this is an issue when an examiner is being asked whether an invention is abstract – that very question is entirely subjective and, as Sir Robin noted, in such a situation of course wrongly granted patents will be inevitable.

Michael Loney, who went to New York to cover this event for MIP, wrote about the role/input of Kappos as follows:

David Kappos who, (as Hansen says) everyone knows, has 10 priorities for whoever is the next US president:

Innovation = action, progress, leadership
US must resume its role as world leader in innovation
Federal government will lead in championing and rewarding innovation
Government needs to recognise innovators need incentives
Patent system is our system for incentivising innovation – we need a strong patent system
Administration should not shy away from leadership in tuning patent system, from a position of strength
Curtail abuses, but with the view that the benefits of patents far outweigh occasional misuses
Patent system must take precedence in conflicts with other systems of law, especially antitrust law
We will favour creation of new technologies and dynamic competition not protecting status quo (as antitrust law does)
Patent system is enshrined in the constitution because innovation is about exalting what’s next not what’s now.

In the Q&A, he says he feels the current (Obama) administration, in its second term, has not been as supportive of patents as it was before or should be.

It would be a lot nicer if Kappos just stayed out of policy and didn’t contribute to the impression that patent lawyers and patent aggressors such as IBM steer policy in their favour, such that money (billions of dollars) is passed into their pockets without them lifting a finger. They self-discredit their firms and also discredit this system as a whole. It’s no better than what we find in ISDS (e.g. in TTIP/TPP) or ACTA, but there’s less public outrage because few members of the public ‘grok’ patent law.

El Acta VENUE y la Reforma ITC Todavía Sirven Para Distraernos de una Urgente/Requida Reforma Real (Abolir las Patentes de Software)

Posted in America, Patents at 2:47 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz


Publicado en America, Patentes at 4:18 pm por el Dr. Roy Schestowitz

CCIA logoSumario: Más seudo-soluciones para un actual severo, (y creciente) problema que se resume a una baja calidad de patentes, notablemente patentes de software

El Acta VENUE fue cubierta aquí varias veces temprano este mes y ahora es la palabra (o término) en los labios de varias personas, incluso en los de los compadres de los trolles de patentes, quienes en artículos no relacionados mencionan: “El Venue Equity y el Acta de No-Uniformidad del 2016 restringiría juicios de patentes a cortes distritales donde las partes estan incorporadas o donde ellos tengan localizado físicamente en el desarrollo de la tecnología en disputa o infringimiento.”

El Acta VENUE, a pesar de su nombre pegajoso, no es una solución. Es simplemente un esfuerzo en demorar el problema mientras que continuamente empeora, usualmente en Texas. “el Acta VENUE apunta a disminuir la facilidad de llenar juicios de patentes en el Distrito Este de Texas” dice el titular de este nuevo artículo. Para citar de el:

Un proyecto de ley propuesto recientemente en el Senado de EE.UU. puede ser la clave para frenar el abuso de las demandas de patentes rampante en la jurisdicción demandante de usar Distrito Este de Texas.

Propuesto por los Sendores Republicanos Jeff Flake (Arizona), Cory Gardner (Colorado) y Mike Lee (Utah), el Acta Venue Equity and Non-Uniformity Elimination Act (VENUE Act) se dirige a una parte muy específica del problema con el abuso de patentes conocida como la búsqueda de foro.

“El Acta VENUE podría hacer más difícil para que las compañíás llenen/soliciten juicios en distritos que no tengan connección significativa con el juicio,” Daniel Nazer, abogada del Electronic Frontier Foundation y Mark Presidente cubano para eliminar las patentes estúpida, dijo el sureste de Texas Registro. “Este proyecto de ley es realmente acerca de asegurarse de que los conflictos que se presenten en algún lugar que tenga sentido.”

En lugar de permitir que un propietario de patentes presente demandas en cualquier lugar que les guste, según el proyecto de ley, una persona debe presentar una demanda en la ciudad donde se creó la invención o donde la empresa demandada este localizad o donde fabrique sus productos. En otras palabras, nuevas empresas pequeñas de California ya no podrían ser demandadas por un inventor de California en el Distrito Este de Texas, si el Acta VENUE se convirtie en ley.

Sin embargo, esto no es la solución. Como muchas propuestas de ´reforma´ antes que ella, meramente sirve para dar la ilusión que los problemas son enfréntados, cuando en realidad es lo contrario. Otro sitio, propiedad de un grupo de fachada perteneciente a grandes corporaciones que se enfoca en su mayoría en trolles de patentes, habla acerca de algo llamado reforma ITC, cualquier cosa que ello signifique (algo vago). Matt Levy (CCIA) escribe:

El último par de semanas se han visto dos ´buenos´ proyectos de ley introducidos, primero el Acta
VENUE, ya ahora el Acta de Protección Contra Trolles. Este proyecto de ley bipartidario cierra hoyos a la Comisión Internacional de Comercio que ha sido explotada por los trolles de patentes.

La Comisión de Comercio Internacional (CCI) es una agencia cuyo trabajo principal es proteger a las industrias estadounidenses de la competencia desleal en el extranjero. Si una compañía de EE.UU. piensa otra compañía importó bienes injustamente, puede pedir a la ITC investigar. Si la Comisión considera que el importador (llamado el demandado) ha violado las leyes de comercio (que incluyen infacció de las patentes de EE.UU.), puede emitir una orden de exclusión. La orden instruye bloquear los productos de los que se trate en la frontera.

La ITCmaneja un buen número de casos de patentes, debido a la posibilidad de obtener una orden de exclusión es esencialmente la misma que una orden judicial en los tribunales de distrito. Y ahí es donde los trolls de patentes entran en juego.

La ITC tiene muchos problemas, pero eso no significa que dentro de la ITC (aplicación por embargo/sanciones) existe una solution al problema en su totalidad, que es la baja cálidad de patentes (e.g. de software) siendo otorgadas virtualmente con no control de calidad. La USPTO cada vez más parece una oficina de aplicación de patentes, no una oficina de examinación. Trataremos de esto en un próximo post más tarde.

Grandes Reclamos de Oracle Contra Linux/Android Demuestra la Futilidad de la OIN

Posted in Apple, GNU/Linux, Google, IBM, OIN, Oracle, Patents at 2:38 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz


Publicado en Apple, GNU/Linux, Google, IBM, OIN, Oracle, Patentes at 4:01 pm por el Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Una solución que sólo los agresores de patentes y sus proponentes como IBM pueden coexistir

Ginni Rometty

Photo fuente (modificada ligéramente): Las 10 Mujeres Más Poderosas en Tecnología Hoy

Sumario: Oracle (de la OIN) esta enjuciando a Google (también de la OIN) por Android (Linux-based) y buscándo casi $10,000,000,000 en ‘daños’ sirve para mostrar que la OIN no es una atajo/solución al problema clave, que son las patentes de software

La guerra de patentes de Apple contra Android todavía esta en los titulares esta semana [1, 2, 3] y también hay un montón de artículos del caso de Oracle contra Android en nuestras diarias links. No hay duda, dado que Oracle reciéntemente se unió a la OIN, su ataque contra Android comprueba que la OIN está muy lejos de una solución. Oracle quiere recuperárse de la compra de Sun al usar patentes de software por la que los trabajadores de Sun trabajaron, junto a derechos de autor. “El caso tendrá ramificaciones mayores para las patentes de software y licensiamento en todo el mundo,” dijo este reportaje.

Aqui esta un nuevo artícule acerca de la Linux Foundation y la OIN. Para citar las partes más relevantes:

Cumplir con los requisitos legales es uno de los elementos clave que las grandes compañías de software sopesan en sus ciclos de lanzamiento. Tienen equipos que comprueban las patentes de software que puedan impactar en su código, asegúrarse de que todos los derechos de autor sean reconocidos y mirar las cláusulas detalladas de uso en cualquier software de terceros que utilicen.

Una de las razones para hacer esto es para evitar litigios costosos de compañías que se conocen como trolles de patentes. Estas son empresas que han comprado grandes grupos de patentes de software. Su modelo de negocio es como sigue, utilizar estas patentes para demandar a los desarrolladores y en la última década hemos visto una serie de demandas de alto nivel contra compañías como IBM, Microsoft, Google y otros. Algunas de ellas han sido rechazadas por los tribunales, pero otros han sido reafirmadas lo que cuesta cientos de millones de dólares en multas y costos.

Mientras que desarrolladores de código de fuente abierta puedan pensar que ellos están inmunes a este tipo de ataque, lo cierto es que no. Pueda ser que una pieza de software publicada como open source es más tarde presuntamente haber infringido una patente de software. Esto podría significar que alguien usando ese software sea encontrado culpable de infracción.

Para reducir el impacto de reclamo de patentes Google, IBM, Red Hat, SUSE, NEC, Philips y Sony crearon el Open Innovation Network. Su objetivo fue crear una pool (grupo) de patentes defensivas que pudiera ser usada para proteger Linux y a sus desarrolladores. Este ha hecho que más de 1946 compañías se unan a la OIN para usar sus patentes para defenderse así misma de ataques.

Cuando tu trabajas en patentes de software para una compañíá – no importa cuán benigna esa compañía sea – tu nunca sabes quién las conseguirá/usará. Vean la respuesta que recibí de de un trabajador de Red Hat (Alexandre Oliva) después de haber escrito esto, habiendo hecho un llamado a Red Hat detenerse en perseguir patentes de software y descolmillar las existentes. Como Oliva lo puso, “cuando me di cuenta de esto hace 6 años, comenze una campaña para que Red Hat convierta su Promesa de Patentes en una licensia actual, pero hasta hora no suerte. hasta que este problema mayor sea arreglado, no más aplicaciones de patentes de mi…”

Un crítico por largo tiempo de la OIN, Florian Müller, fue uno de los primeros en señalar que la OIN no sería efectiva ya que un miembro de la OIN (Oracle) enjuició a otro (Google). El tiene este nuevo post que dice: “Hay un interesante paralelo entre Apple versus Samsung (quiero decir su primer caso, con respecto al cual la Corte Suprema ha otorgado certiorari) y el Oracle versus Google Android-Java litigación sobre derechos de autor: en ambos casos, la mayoría de los cargos en disputa están basados en la teoría de restitución de los beneficios del infractor, y a primera vista, el monto reclamado por los propietarios de derechos parecen muy altísimos. Hay incluso más similaridades. Por ejemplo, en ambos casos, los acusados son protagonistas claves de Android. Pero también hay importantes diferencias reales, no limitados al hecho que patentes de diseño y derechos de autor son diferentes tipos de propiendad intelectual.

Estos casos de alto nivel sirver para demostrar los peligros de las patentes de software (Novell terminó en manos de Microsoft, Oracle en las manos de Apple y Red Hat podría terminar en cualquier lugar, dependiendo de quién lo compre y cuándo) y la inútil que es la OIN. La verdaderos personaje buscando por una reforma deben hacer campaña para la completa abolición de las patentes de software ellos mismos. El próximo post tratará con otras ideas de reforma/estrategias deficientes.

Microsoft en la EPO: Una Mirada a la Relación

Posted in Europe, Patents at 2:27 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz


Publicado en Europe, Patents at 1:32 pm por el Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Una serie de artículos que dependen/provienen de otras fuentes

Microsoft at EPO

Sumario: Relacionens entre la Oficina Europea de Patentes y Microsoft son exploradas a fond, especialmente su inapropiedad

AYER escribimos acerca del tratamiénto especial de la EPO a los usuarios de Windows, después de lo cual recibimos algunos tips acerca de la alternativa Web, de la que ya sabíamos (y difícimente cambia algo de lo que escribimos). En realidad, un lector nos escribió para decirnos acerca de “Microsoft en la EPO” y explicó lo que basado en la Web siginifica dentro de la-EPO. Para citar: “Interesante post acerca de la tendencia de la EPO para fraternizar con el Lado Oscuro. Gracias. Es realmente absurdo que en el 2016 la EPO esperara que sus clientes usen. Sin embargo, la EPO está alcanzando; también tiene un portal Web, el cual es independiente de plataforma. Le importaría, “platforma independiente” significa algo diferente en el habla de la EPO; significa que tu puedes usar el portal web si tu estás usando Firefox (o algo llamado “Internet Explorer”, lo que eso sea) en Microsoft Windows. Necesitas una smart card de la EPO y un USB smart card reader de Gemalto (Gemalto ¿también favorecido?), pero la EPO sólo provee instrucciones para instalar el card reader en Windows. Es posible installar los drivers en una Mac, o en Linux, pero la EPO evita hablar decomo esto puede ser hecho. Por Mac, primero tienes que llamar por teléfono al apoyo técnico de la EPO, y ellos te mandarán por correo electrónico la link para bajar los drivers para ´su´ card-reader (la link no es pública, porque las Mac no son apoyadas). Para Linux, primero debes obtener el número de teléfono de un especial IT guru de la EPO, explicando quien eres y porque quieres usar Linux, y si el esta de buen humor te enviará su propia copia no oficial de los drivers de Gemalto para Linux, mientras al mismo tiempo te advertirá de las tribulaciones que te sobrevendran.”

“Le importaría, “platforma independiente” significa algo diferente en el habla de la EPO; significa que tu puedes usar el portal web si tu estás usando Firefox (o algo llamado “Internet Explorer”, lo que eso sea) en Microsoft Windows.”
Todavía estamos espernado de que alguien arroje luz sobre la secreta relación financiera/técnica entre Microsoft y la EPO (donde pesos y contrapesos no existen y el contrato presidencial fue puesto en la oscuridad cuando se hizo cargo Battistelli).

En order de equiparnos con información verificable e imposible de negar todavía estamos persiguiendo huellas del contrato de Battistelli (los cuales no deberían ser secretos en primer lugar, su predecesora compartió la suya) Todavía estamos espernado de que alguien nos arroje información sobre el secreto contrato entre Microsoft y la EPO (en IT). Apostamos que es sobrevalorado, basado en lo que nos hemos enterado en el pasado y en lo que algunos periodistas nos han dicho. La EPO es muy sensitiva en cuanto se trata de gente que explora su relación con Microsoft, quién es actualmente notorio por sus contractos CORRUPTOS y SOBORNOS (con fallos judiciales que confirma esto, así que no hay punto en mandarme más cartas amenazantes, Sr. Battistelli).

“Me gustaría ver toda la innovación de open source suceda arriba de Windows.” [¿incluso Ubuntu/Bash?]

Steve Ballmer, Microsoft CEO

El Horneado por Microsoft SCO Esta Todavía Atacando a Linux

Posted in GNU/Linux, IBM, Microsoft, SCO, UNIX at 2:18 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz


Publicado en GNU/Linux, IBM, Microsoft, SCO, UNIX at 12:26 pm por el Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Microsoft SCO
See Lawrence R. Goldfarb (Wikipedia)

Sumario: el caso SCO no ha acabado todavía, y permanece no claro quié esta subsidiando el caso

El caso SCO “se levanta de la tumba de nuevo,” dice hoy el titular de los medios Británicos (que lanzaron la historia). Esta historia que podría ser del 2009, 2010 y todo hasta el 2016. Nunca acaba. ¿De dónde viene el financiamiénto?

“Bueno, SCO levanta de la tumba o tal vez la información no era exacta. Se nos ha dicho esto durante 7 años y hasta hace 2 meses nosotros dudamos que esto fue el final de todo.”Bueno, SCO levanta de la tumba o tal vez la información no era exacta. Se nos ha dicho esto durante 7 años y hasta hace 2 meses nosotros dudamos que esto fue el final de todo. La razón que relmente no creímos que es el final de toda esa litigación es todo ese modelo de Groklaw (o medios citando Groklaw) de decir que estaba lejos de terminar. Groklaw todavía esta publicando PDFs que se relacionan a este caso y medios Británicos los citan (sabiéndo magicamente donde estos documentos están). Para citar a The Inquirer: “En un comunicado, el juez David Nuffer argumentó que “la naturaleza de las reclamaciones son tales que ninguna corte de apelación tendría que decidir los mismos problemas más de una vez si había alguna posteriores recursos”, efectívamente sugiriéndo que el caso tiene para rato.

“El 1 de marzo, que la presentación fue respaldada por una explicación completa del juez, declarando vencedor IBM enfático en la larga saga.”

“Se ordena y se adjudicó que de acuerdo con las órdenes del tribunal presentó el 10 de julio, 2013 5 de febrero de 2016, y 8 de febrero, 2016, se dictó sentencia a favor del acusado y las causas de los demandantes de acción son despedidos con prejuicio” se indica en el documento.”

“Para implementar exitósamente E.E.E. algo que debes dar es la impresión de buenas intenciones.”“Ahora, sin embargo, SCO se ha presentado una vez más para apelar la sentencia aunque, con precisión los motivos que aún reclaman no se han dado a conocer.”

También afirma que “no es claro quién continúa financiando el caso.” Bueno, talvez pregunten eso a Microsoft. Insiste que todavía “ama a Linux” mientras al mismo tiempo saca un E.E.E. sobre el (incluso hace unas horas). Para implementar exitósamente E.E.E. algo que debes dar es la impresión de buenas intenciones.

“…Microsoft quiso promover a SCO y su juicio pendiente contra IBM y el sistema operativo Linux. Pero Microsoft no quiso ser visto como atacando IBM o Linux.”

Larry Goldfarb, BayStar, accionista clave en SCO abordado por Microsoft

La UPC Traería Patentes de Software a Europa y Abriría las Compuertas a Litigación

Posted in Europe, Patents, RAND at 2:08 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz


Publicado en Europe, Patents, RAND at 7:29 am por el Dr. Roy Schestowitz

No es difícil imaginar quién se beneficiaría de hacer lo abstracto patentable

Trojan horse

Sumario: La UPC también tiene un ángulo/elemento FRAND en ella y así, en muchos casos, patentes de software en Europa (impuesto sobre patentes y/o juicios por software, que es copiado y distribuído en vez de fabricado o producido)

LA gerencia de la EPO, parece esta trabajando para las grandes corporaciónes (que no son incluso Europeas)*, tratándo de manera no democrática impulsar a la hóstil contra las PYMEs UPC, por extensión esparciéndo las patentes de software en el continente/Comunidad/naciones Europeas y más allá de ellas (la EPO es más amplia que ello) – una herramienta de colonización/dominación viniendo del otro lado del charco -. Los exáminadores de la EPO no toleran esto ya que pone en peligro la calidad de patentes y daña la credibilidad de la EPO, conjuntamente con el valor percibido de las patentes Europeas (EPs). Ya hemos presentado esto en muchos artículos, citando expertos en el campo, diciéndo que la UPC traería las patentes de software a Europa.

“Los exáminadores de la EPO no toleran esto ya que pone en peligro la calidad de patentes y daña la credibilidad de la EPO, conjuntamente con el valor percibido de las patentes Europeas (EPs).”Una materia sobre la que hemos estado escribiéndo por más de 9 años es RAND (algunas veces conocido como FRAND por un mucho más ¨justo¨ extra eúfemismo). Este nuevo artículo de la prensa India (donde el debate acerca de las patentes de software ha estado caliente reciéntemente) habla acerca de ¨FRAND¨ como sigue: “La semana pasada tuvimos un artículo en estandar patentes esenciales (“SEPs”) por Divya Rajput, y como us licensiamento en Justo, Razonable, y No-Discriminatorio (“FRAND”) términos ayuda a varias industrias para operar y server clientes. Ms. Rajput hace varios puntos intersantes, pero estos no estan basados en la realidad y reflejan inconsistencias lógicas.

“Ya hemos presentado muchos artículos, citando a expertos en el campo, diciéndo que la UPC traería patentes de software a Europa.”“Hubo un tiempo en el que servidumbre por contrato (en LatinoAmerica la tuvimos hasta mediados del siglo pasado con la venia de los Estados Unidos, y en Mexico todavía algunos reductos que sirven grandes campos de cultivo que alimentan a los vecinos del norte) fue considerada una cosa buena. Gracias a Dios no estamos viviéndo aquellos días. Hoy, es una ofensa criminal. Lo mismo es verda del licensiamiento de SEPs. Lo que fué una excelente práctica de negocios en los 90s, no es viable estrategia de negocios hoy. De los cinco originales (Motorola, Ericsson, Nokia, Alcatel-Lucent, and Nortel), ninguno permanece proveyendo y fabricándo teléfonos mobiles. En vez, todos están envueltos en licensiamiento de patentes de una forma u otra. Los grados de cross-licensing en estos dias no pueden ser usados como puntos de referencias hoy.”

Bueno, basados en este nuevo reporte de MIP, la UPC permanece siendo un Caballo de Troya para FRAND y así las patentes de software en Europa (escribimos muchos artículos acerca de esto cerca del 2008). Para citar MIP (detrás de un muro de pago): “Nuesto últmo escenario de la UPC envuelve un caso de patente esencial/estandar. Michael Carter, Nick Cunningham y David Barron consideran las opciónes de un acusado en el nuevo sistema de corte” (vean este reciénte ejemplo).

“…Es imperativo refutar esas pretensiones que vienen primariamente de los abogados de patentes, la EPO, y periodistas crédulos que imprimen cualqier cosa que les dicen esos dos grupos anteriores.”Lectores deben ser conscientes de en círculos cabilderos anti-FOSS (e.g. la Business Software Alliance o la Association for Competitive Technology) FRAND se convirtió en un refrán para patentes de software e incompatibilidad con FOSS. Ellos trltan de reducir progresivamente FOSS fuera de existencia, o simplemente hacerlo arbitráriamente sujeto a pagos (veán lo que Microsoft esta haciéndo a Linux y Android por instancia), he aqui oneroso y díficil/imposible/prohibido de redistribuir. La UPC es una cosa peligrosísima. Hay un artículo en Alemán acerca de ello] (reciéntemente publicado, traducciones serían muy apreciadas) y dados los altos (y creciéntes) niveles de desinformacion en los medios acerca de la UPC, es imperativo refutar esas pretensiones que vienen primariamente de los abogados de patentes, la EPO, y periodistas crédulos que imprimen cualqier cosa que les dicen esos dos grupos anteriores.

* Es suficiente decir, que la EPO no es Europea pero un cuerpo internacional (exempto incluso de las leyes Europeas). Lo único “Europeo” acerca de ella son sus empleados. A pesar de trabajar paara un cuerpo internacional, estos empleados son también Europeos (ciudadanos de la UE), por lo tanteo deberían tener intereses Europeos que defender, a diferencia de la gerencia (DIRIGIDA POR O HECHA PARA COMPLACER INTERESES EXTRANJEROS).

Con ‘Amor’ Como el de Microsoft ¿Quién Puede Definir Odio de ahora en Adelante?

Posted in Deception, GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Ubuntu at 1:54 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz


Publicado en Deception, GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Ubuntu at 8:00 am por el Dr. Roy Schestowitz

O como ´amigos´ como estos, ¿Quién necesita enemigos?

BP loves puppies
BP ama a puppies

Sumario: Creciente percepción de que Microsoft esta simplemente mintiéndo a todo el mundo mientras activamente ataca a GNU/Linux a puertas cerradas (arreglos secretos, sobornos, extorsión de patentes y lo demás)

Esta mañana hubieron muchas diátribas online acerca de lo que Canonical ha hecho con Microsfot para ayudarle a vender Vista 10 y poner Ubunto dentro de un hypervisor proprietario, completo con keyloger, puertas traseras, y lo deás. No deseamos pasar más tiempo hablando de las ramificaciones (hay algo de ellon en nuestras links diarias), pero mucha gente lo ha etiquetado/llamado E.E.E (y muy corréctamente). Escribimos acerca de ello anoche, también notando lo que Microsoft ha estado haciéndo en China y Romania (esto esta siendo discutido en Soylent News profundamente hoy).

“Está enamorado de Linux, así que esta tratándo de aplastar a Linux.”Un artículo particular, nos fue enviado esta mañana por un lector, dice: “Relaciones con el Estado Rojo han recorrido un largo camino desde los planes a ‘Dewindowsify’ fueron anunciadas en 2014, sugiriéndo que Microsoft sería echado de lado en favor de un sistema proprietario basado en Linux. Esto todavía continúa, and NeoKylin ya está siendo usado en algunos sistemas claves del gobierno.”

Correcto, pero Microsoft ama a Linux. Lo dice. Está enamorado de Linux, así que esta tratándo de aplastar a Linux. Basado en reportajes, Microsoft todavía trabaja activamente para socavar esta masiva migración. Si la clase gobernante se traga el cuento debido a la corrupción de algunos burócratas vendidos a Microsoft caerán de nuevo en manos de la CIA. Recuerden como fue saboteado el programa atómico de Iran, simplemente usaban Windows en sus centrales nucleáres. Rusos no sean cojudos! Si esta es la compañía que ¨ama a Linux¨, entonces ya perdimos vista de lo que es un enemigo. Incidentálmente, como fué señalado por este mismo lector, IDG, de nuevo esta difundiéndo propaganda para Microsoft, poco tiempo despues de haber atacado a GNU/Linux con informaciones falsas (mismo autor). Este ayayerismo se resume a, Microsoft ha perdido y no tiene oportunidad de recuperárse. He aquí ganó. ¿Es este periódismo? Ni siquiera comprueban los hechos. ¿Qué es lo próximo? ¿Otro artículo de Microsoft ¨ama a Linux¨? Ellos emiten esto cada dos días (aquí hay un ejemplo de la semana pasada). Es más una campaña de relaciónes públicas que periodismo.

“Una estrategia que Microsoft ha empleado en el pasado es pagar por el silencio de personas y compañías. Charles Pancerzewski, antiguo jefe auditor de Microsoft, se enteró de esta práctica de Microsoft de pasar ganancias de un periódo contable al siguiente, conocida como ¨manejo de ganancias¨. Esta práctica alisa reportados fuentes de ingresos, aumenta el valor compartido y engaña a los empleados y accionistas. Además de ser no ético, es también ilegal bajo la Ley de Seguridades de los US y viola Prácticas Contables Aceptadas Generalmente (Fink).

2002 Historia acerca de Charles Pancerzewski, Microsoft

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