09.22.16

Gemini version available ♊︎

Links 22/9/2016: Red Hat’s Latest Results, GNOME 3.22 Released

Posted in News Roundup at 6:45 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME bluefish

Contents

GNU/Linux

  • Desktop

    • In a world of free operating systems, can Windows 10 survive?
    • Microsoft is planning to buy back €36bn worth of its own shares [Ed: Microsoft is collapsing. Now it’s buying back its OWN shares. history of fraud]

      Microsoft on Tuesday raised its quarterly dividend by 8pc and said it would buy back up to $40bn (€36bn) as part of a new share repurchase program.

      The company raised its dividend to 39c per share, up 3c from the previous quarter.

    • Microsoft keeps good piece of Steve Ballmer legacy
    • Warning: Microsoft Doesn’t Want You To Install Linux On Its “Signature PCs”

      Microsoft hates it when its customers wish to install Linux or other operating systems on its PCs. A Redditor has expressed concern over his inability to install Linux on a Yoga 900 ISK2 Ultrabook. Trying to justify this, Lenovo has said that Yoga 900 runs a Signature Edition of Windows 10 Home installed and it’s locked per our agreement with Microsoft.

    • Lenovo reportedly blocking Linux on Windows 10 Signature Edition PCs (updated)

      According to Reddit user BaronHK, it is impossible to install Linux onto the Signature Edition Lenovo Yoga 900 ISK2 UltraBook because the SSD is locked in a proprietary RAID mode that Linux doesn’t support, and that even Windows 10 cannot use without an Lenovo driver being downloaded first.

      Evidence — in the form of owner reports and reviews — has been uncovered which suggests that the Yoga 900S, and Yoga 710S are locked in a similar manner.

      To confuse matters further, there is a post from a Lenovo “product expert” claiming that Signature Edition PCs have to lock out Linux users because Microsoft says so.

    • Microsoft Reportedly Requires “Signature PCs” To Be Locked To Only Running Windows

      Lately I’ve heard a few reports of some newer PCs being less than friendly with Linux, namely a number of Lenovo devices who have issues with installing Linux. Based upon new information that’s come to light from a Phoronix reader, it appears that PCs receiving Microsoft’s “Signature Edition” tag are being locked-out from running non-Windows platforms.

      Ryan Farmer wrote in explaining that his Yoga 900 ISK2 UltraBook hasn’t been able to see Linux installed over a proprietary RAID mode that’s locked by the UEFI/BIOS of this ultrabook: Linux can’t see the SSD. When contacting Lenovo, he was told by a Lenovo representative, “This system has a Signature Edition of Windows 10 Home installed. It is locked per our agreement with Microsoft.”

    • Microsoft Said to Ban Linux on Windows 10 Signature Edition PCs

      So much for the “Microsoft loves Linux” phrase

    • Lenovo’s Signature laptops refuse to install Linux
    • Lenovo denies claims it plotted with Microsoft to block Linux installs
    • Microsoft is now blocking laptops from installing Linux, Lenovo says [Update]
    • If You’re A Linux User, Be Wary Of Microsoft’s ‘Signature’ PCs
    • Lenovo denies blocking Linux on its Windows 10 PCs
    • Windows 10 Home Signature Editions Lenovo Yogas locked to disallow Linux installations
    • You Can’t Install Linux on a Microsoft Signature Edition Laptop
    • Users are reporting that Lenovo is blocking them from installing Linux on their Yogas [Ed: thanks to UEFI]
    • Microsoft Signature PC Program Allegedly Blocks Installation Of Linux, Or Does It?
    • Lenovo Says Linux Is Not Blocked on Its Windows 10 PCs
    • Lenovo confirms and denies locking Linux operating systems out of Yoga notebooks
    • The blame game: Lenovo locked Linux out of certain Microsoft’s Signature hardware
    • Some Lenovo PCs can’t run Linux
    • Lenovo confirms that Linux won’t work on Yoga 900 and 900S laptops
    • Lenovo denies deliberately blocking Linux on Windows 10 PCs
    • Surprise! Microsoft Isn’t Blocking Linux on Lenovo Laptops
    • Lenovo Denies Claims It Plotted With Microsoft To Block Linux Installs
    • Lenovo laptops refuse to run Linux due to storage woes, not Microsoft evildoing
    • Microsoft aren’t forcing Lenovo to block free operating systems [Ed: says a famous Microsoft and UEFI apologist]
    • No, Microsoft Isn’t Locking Linux Out of PCs [Ed: here come the Microsoft mouthpieces like Thurrott]
    • No, Microsoft is not locking users out of Lenovo laptops [Ed: and those who repeat/parrot these mouthpieces]
    • ‘Microsoft isn’t forcing Lenovo to block free operating systems’
    • Rosy Red Hat, GNOME 3.22, MS/Lenovo Barricading

      Red Hat, Inc. released the financial results for the second quarter ending August 31, 2016 in a press release today. Red Hat stock seems to be going in the right direction for them as well even as insiders sell off their shares. The top story today must have been the skirmish resulting from reports of Linux being blocked from certain Lenovo laptops under orders from Microsoft. Elsewhere, GNOME 3.22 was released as a new age rating system is planned for 3.23. And finally, The Document Foundation reported the results of its 2016 Membership Committee elections.

      It was widely reported today that Lenovo laptops featuring Windows 10 lock the hard drive with proprietary code that Linux can not read – so in essence, blocking users from installing Linux. A user asking in a Lenovo support forum was told by an employee that Linux was blocked due to an agreement with Microsoft. The news traveled around the Intertubes with lightening speed making headlines at every tech site in existence. So, Lenovo and Microsoft jumped into damage control saying it was due to proprietary RAID software. Former kernel contributor Matthew Garrett addressed the issue on his blog today saying the sensational headlines are distracting from a real issue here. He said this is probably because “recent Intel hardware needs special setup for good power management and Microsoft could be insisting that Signature Edition systems ship in “RAID” mode in order to ensure that. Or it could be a misunderstanding regarding UEFI Secure Boot.” He said it all boils down to Intel doing “very little to ensure that free operating systems work well on their consumer hardware.” In any case, two major contributors to the Linux kernel and open source really couldn’t care less about either. Today’s sensational headlines might not be accurate, but they do point to a real problem, among many others.

    • Lenovo responds to Linux blocking issue, issues non-denial denial
    • True Love…and Microsoft Love

      Stop the patent blackmail

      Microsoft has been going to licensees of Android and threatening the licensees with suit if the licensees do not pay Microsoft money for using software that Microsoft says violates their patents. When the companies agree to settle out of court, Microsoft then requires them not to discuss publically which patents are claimed in violation or anything about the settlement. Of course this means that the FOSS community can not study the patents (to see if they are valid or not) or know which sections of code could be re-written to avoid the patents.

      This is more important than Microsoft just getting their pound of flesh for some code that they did not write, which may have existed as “prior art” while Bill Gates was still getting speeding tickets in New Mexico.

      When companies start to develop products they want to know about as many risks as possible. Therefore they worry about patents that exist in code that could be used to block their product, or make it more expensive than they thought the product would be.

      Not knowing what the patents are, or how much Microsoft will charge for them, or even if they are valid, the companies can not make that decision easily. Therefore they might avoid a FOSS (particularly Android) solution.

      Another problem with software patents is that it makes it expensive, difficult and/or dangerous for companies to distribute code over the Internet or on some media. If there is patent-bearing code in the distribution, a distribution could not afford even a penny royalty if there are going to be millions of copies of their code downloaded, with (perhaps) only 100,000 actually installed. This is why some distributions have a separate package for royalty bearing code (usually multimedia codecs), and others have a version for the USA and other countries that recognize software patents and another version for “the rest of the world”.

      The problem with this technique being applied to Microsoft’s claimed patents is that the patents claimed appear to be in the kernel, and the Linux community does not know which patents or to what code the patents apply.

      For Microsoft to show their love for FOSS, I would recommend them joining the Open Invention Network, or simply agree to license these questionable patents free of charge to organizations using FOSS. Microsoft could still charge royalties for their patents used in closed, proprietary software. I have heard Apple has a lot of cash on hand.

      Allow FOSS proponents to keynote at major Microsoft events.

      Microsoft has been coming to FOSS events for many years now. At first there was always the question of whether a FOSS event should allow someone who has been calling you a “virus”, or “a communist” or talking about your “crappy software” to come to their events, but normally it was felt that for FOSS people to exclude Microsoft personnel from attending or to eliminate them from speaking, or even to refuse to take their sponsorship money was not being very “open”. So Microsoft started coming to FOSS events, having booths, speaking, and trying to hire FOSS programmers.

      On the other hand I remember several times where I was chased out of a general purpose computer event by event managers because Microsoft had complained that we were handing out free CDROMs of GNU/Linux to show attendees. At one event I was even forbidden to hand them out on the street corner in front of the event because the side walk also belonged to the venue (or so they said).

      One time we allowed a Microsoft product manager to participate in a panel with Linus, and about ten seconds before we went on the stage the Microsoft manager pulled out the results of software tests to prove that for some obscure function Microsoft Windows was some percentage faster than Linux. Linus, of course, could not refute this, but he did go home and investigate the issue, and in the next release of Linux that function was two or three times faster than Microsoft Windows.

      Nevertheless, I do not remember Microsoft ever allowing a FOSS person to discuss the benefits of the FOSS model of software at a major Microsoft customer or developer event, and if Microsoft really “loved Linux” (and their customers) you would think Microsoft would want their developer and customer base to know about those values and benefits.

      So for Microsoft to really show its love, I think they should invite recognized FOSS advocates to speak as keynote speakers at Convergence, //Build, the Worldwide Partner Conference and Microsoft Ignite. I am sure I could find the time in my schedule to attend one or two of them and there are other FOSS people who could also help out.

    • Lenovo Accused Of Locking Linux Out Of Certain Laptops At Microsoft’s Request

      So whether Microsoft is truly to blame here is still an open question. At the very least, it does seem like Lenovo has some questions to answer — and one hopes that the company will be more forthright and honest than it was back during the Superfish episode when it basically lied through its teeth until it couldn’t lie any more.

    • Polychromatic Works With New Razer Linux Drivers, Even More Devices
  • Server

    • Beginning Grep for Linux SysAdmins

      GNU grep is an amazing power tool for finding words, numbers, spaces, punctuation, and random text strings inside of files, and this introduction will get you up and running quickly.

      We’ll stick to GNU grep and the Bash shell, because both are the defaults on most Linux distros. You can verify that you have GNU grep, and not some other grep…

    • Cloud Migration Is Making Performance Monitoring Crucial

      Application performance monitoring (APM) and network performance monitoring (NPM) are becoming increasingly important as businesses that have adopt cloud-based services and virtualized infrastructure.

      In the recent SDxCentral report, “Network Performance Management Takes On Applications,” more than half of surveyed respondents are actively looking at APM and NPM systems, and more than one-third are in the testing and deployment phases of adoption. Another 16 to 20 percent are piloting these systems, and roughly 15 percent have already deployed them in their network.

    • Containing container chaos with Kubernetes

      You’ve made the switch to Linux containers. Now you’re trying to figure out how to run containers in production, and you’re facing a few issues that were not present during development. You need something more than a few well-prepared Dockerfiles to move to production. What you need is something to manage all of your containers: a container orchestration system.

  • Kernel Space

    • OpenDaylight Introduces ‘Boron’ SDN Platform Release

      The industry consortium’s fifth release of its SDN platform puts a focus on the cloud, NFV, performance and tools.
      The OpenDaylight Project effort to create a common platform for network virtualization continues to mature with the unveiling of the group’s fifth release, dubbed “Boron.”

      The industry consortium announced the Boron release Sept. 21, a week before the OpenDaylight Summit kicks off in Seattle Sept. 27. Project officials said the new release brings with it improvements around the cloud and network-functions virtualization (NFV), and is the result of contributions by consortium members in a range of areas, including performance and tools.

    • Is an Editable Blockchain the Future of Finance?

      Blockchain, the technology that underlies the cryptocurrency Bitcoin, has been celebrated as a way to change the way transactions of all kinds are made. But a suggestion to make an editable version of the technology is now dividing opinion.

      The consultancy firm Accenture is patenting a system that would allow an administrator to make changes to information stored in a blockchain. In an interview with the Financial Times (paywall), Accenture’s global head of financial services, Richard Lumb, said that the development was about “adapting the blockchain to the corporate world” in order to “make it pragmatic and useful for the financial services sector.”

    • OPNFV Taking the Best of Open Source to Build an NFV Platform

      The OPNFV project is somewhat unlike other collaborative projects hosted at Linux Foundation. Rather than being the home for a specific single piece of technology, OPNFV works with multiple upstream open-source communities in a bid to compose a complete Network Function Virtualization (NFV) platform.

    • Graphics Stack

      • OpenGL ES 3.2 Officially Enabled For Intel Mesa Driver, Limited To Skylake+

        Intel’s Mesa driver has supported all of the extensions required by the OpenGL ES 3.2 specification, but only today is the support being officially advertised.

        Today’s commit by Kenneth Graunke of Intel explains, “It’s already advertised because the version.c extension checks are fulfilled, but we didn’t actually claim support, so trying to create a ES 3.2 context would fail. It’s all done, and the CTS results look good, so let’s turn it on.”

      • NVIDIA Is Working Towards HDR Display Support For Linux, But The Desktop Isn’t Ready

        NVIDIA supports HDR displays on Windows and Android, but not currently under Linux for the infrastructure not being in place to support High Dynamic Range displays from the Linux desktop. NVIDIA though is looking at working towards ultimately supporting HDR displays on Linux.

      • Some Fresh Linux 4.8 + Mesa 12.1-dev OpenGL Benchmarks For Radeon GPUs

        For those craving some fresh Mesa Git benchmarks, here are a few OpenGL tests I carried out with some AMD Radeon GPUs when comparing the out-of-the-box Ubuntu 16.04 LTS performance to what’s offered currently by Linux 4.8 and Mesa 12.1-dev Git.

      • NVIDIA Presents Over GBM vs. EGLStreams, The Big Wayland Support Debate Continues
      • XDC2016 Day 1: GLVND, Tizen Wayland/Vulkan, PRIME Sync
      • How Google’s Android Runtime On Chrome OS Uses Wayland, DRM

        Google developer David Reveman presented at this morning’s XDC2016 conference in Finland about the Android Runtime for Chrome making use of Wayland (ARC++) and how the rest of its graphics stack looks for running Android programs on Chrome OS.

        For rendering with ARC++, Gralloc and the OpenGL ES driver are using the Direct Rendering Manager, applications have full access to OpenGL ES, and there are support for other rendering APIs. Compositing with ARC++ is handled by the Android HWComposer and then surfaces are forwarded to Chrome for compositing with the rest of Chrome OS’ user-interface.

      • Wayland 1.12 Next-Gen Linux Display Server Officially Released with Many Goodies

        Today, September 21, 2016, Bryce Harrington has had the great pleasure of announcing the immediate availability of the Wayland 1.12.0 display server for GNU/Linux operating systems, along with the Weston 1.12.0 compositor.

        Development for Wayland 1.12 and Weston 1.12 started exactly a month ago when the first Alpha build was seeded to public testers, and it already contained many of the new functionalities and improvements implemented in this final build we can install today on our GNU/Linux distributions.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments/WMs

    • MATE 1.16 Desktop Environment Officially Released with More GTK+ 3 Improvements

      Just a few minutes ago, Ubuntu MATE project leader, and now a Canonical employee, Martin Wimpress, informed us about the availability of the MATE 1.16 desktop environment for GNU/Linux operating systems.

      It has been six long months since the MATE 1.14 desktop environment was announced, during which the MATE development team worked hard on bringing lots of improvements to the core applications included in the lightweight graphical desktop interface used by default in the Ubuntu MATE operating system and other GNU/Linux distributions, as well as lots of other enhancements and cosmetic changes.

    • GNOME Desktop/GTK

      • GNOME 3.22 core apps

        GNOME 3.22 is scheduled to be released today. Along with this release come brand new recommendations for distributions on which applications should be installed by default, and which applications should not. I’ve been steadily working on these since joining the release team earlier this year, and I’m quite pleased with the result.

      • Catanzaro: GNOME 3.22 core apps
      • GNOME 3.22 Released: the Future is Now
      • GNOME 3.22 released
      • GNOME 3.22 released
      • GNOME 3.22 Officially Released

        Matthias Clasen announced the official GNOME 3.22.0 release a short time ago. He wrote in part, “This release brings comprehensive Flatpak support. GNOME Software can install and update Flatpaks, GNOME Builder can create them, and the desktop provides portal implementations to enable sandboxed applications. Improvements to core GNOME applications include support for batch renaming in Files, sharing support in GNOME Photos, an updated look for GNOME Software, a redesigned keyboard settings panel, and many more.”

      • Parsix’ Nice GNOME, OpenMandriva 3 Sluggish, Firefox 49
      • GTK+ 3.22 GUI Toolkit Released for GNOME 3.22 as Devs Prepare for GTK+ 4.0

        Immediately after announcing the final release of the GNOME 3.22 desktop environment, Matthias Clasen also had the pleasure of informing us about the availability of the GTK+ 3.22 GUI toolkit.

        Most of you out there developing GTK+ apps know what this open source software is all about, and the latest stable build is now 3.22, released as part of the GNOME 3.22 desktop environment. However, it looks like this will be the last release in the GTK+ 3 series, as the developers are now preparing to bump the development builds to version 3.90.x towards GTK+ 4.0.

      • GNOME 3.22 “Karlsruhe” Desktop Environment Is Officially Out, Here’s What’s New

        Today, September 21, 2016, is a big day for Linux users, especially those who love the GNOME desktop environment, as the next major release is now officially available.

      • Introducing GNOME 3.22: Karlsruhe

        GNOME 3.22 is the latest version of GNOME 3, and is the result of 6 months’ hard work by the GNOME community. It contains major new features, as well as many smaller improvements and bug fixes. In total, the release incorporates 22980 changes, made by approximately 775 contributors.

        3.22 has been named “Karlsruhe” in recognition of this year’s GUADEC organizing team. GUADEC is GNOME’s primary conference, which is held in Europe each year, and is only possible due to the amazing work of local volunteers.

      • GNOME 3.22 Official Release Video Uploaded to YouTube

        A GNOME 3.22 release video has gone live on YouTube. It gives users a look at the key changes that feature in the latest update to the Linux desktop environment.

      • GNOME 3.22 Released, This Is What’s New

        GNOME 3.22 is out, and it features comprehensive Flatpak support, file manager improvements, and a whole host more besides. Click through to read more.

      • Who wrote GTK+ 3.22

        Now that GTK+ 3.22.0 and GLib 2.50.0 have been released, it’s time to look back at this development cycle and see the contributions from people and companies that made these releases possible.

      • GNOME Software and Age Ratings

        After all the tarballs for GNOME 3.22 the master branch of gnome-software is now open to new features. Along with the usual cleanups and speedups one new feature I’ve been working on is finally merging the age ratings work.

      • GNOME 3.22 Released

        The GNOME Community has just announced the official release of GNOME 3.22. GNOME 3.22 — which is slated to be used as the desktop environment for Fedora Workstation 25 — provides a multitude of new features, including a the updated Files application, and comprehensive Flatpak integration with the Software application.

        Fedora users that want to try out the new features in GNOME 3.22 can install a pre-release version of Fedora 25, which currently contains a pre-release of GNOME 3.22, but will be updated to include the stable 3.22 release. Alternatively, if you are running Fedora 24, and want to try out individual applications from the GNOME 3.22 release, these can be installed via Flatpak.

  • Distributions

    • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandriva Family

      • OpenMandriva Lx 3.0

        OpenMandriva is a member of the Mandriva (formally Mandrake Linux) family of Linux distributions. OpenMandriva strives to be a newcomer friendly, desktop operating system. The latest release, version 3.0, features version 5.6 of the KDE Plasma desktop environment and the Calamares system installer. This release of OpenMandriva was compiled using the Clang compiler which is unusual for a Linux distribution as most distributions use the GNU Compiler Collection to build their software. From the end-user’s perspective the choice of compiler will probably have no practical impact, but it does suggest the OpenMandriva team sees either a practical or philosophical benefit to using the liberally licensed Clang compiler.

        OpenMandriva is available in 32-bit and 64-bit builds for the x86 architecture. I downloaded the project’s 64-bit build which is approximately 1.8GB in size. Booting from the project’s media brings up a menu asking if we would like to start a live desktop session or launch the Calamares system installer. Taking the live option brings up a graphical configuration wizard which asks us a handful of questions. We are asked to select our preferred language from a list, accept a license agreement, select our keyboard’s layout from a list and confirm our time zone. With these steps completed, the wizard disappears and the Plasma desktop loads. The desktop displays an application menu, task switcher and system tray at the bottom of the screen. The wallpaper is a soft blue and, on the desktop, we find an icon which will launch the Calamares system installer. Other icons on the desktop are available for launching a welcome screen and accessing the OpenMandriva website.

    • Red Hat Family

    • Debian Family

      • Accepted apt 1.3 (source) into unstable
      • APT 1.3 Linux Package Manager Has Been Officially Released in Debian Unstabl

        On September 20, 2016, the APT development team, through Julian Andres Klode, announced the release of version 1.3 of the APT (Advanced Packaging Tool) command-line package manager.

        APT 1.3 has been in the works since early May this year, and it received a total of twelve development releases that brought numerous improvements and new features to one of the oldest and most acclaimed package managers for Debian-based GNU/Linux distributions, such as Ubuntu and Linux Mint.

      • APT 1.3 Released For Debian Linux Distributions

        APT 1.3 is now available as the newest version of this Debian command-line package manager.

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • Snapcraft GUI 3.0 Released for Ubuntu 16.04 LTS (Xenial Xerus) and Ubuntu 16.10

            Softpedia was informed today, September 21, 2016, by Snapcraft GUI developer Keshav Bhatt about the release of a new major update, version 3.0, for Ubuntu 16.04 LTS and above.

            Last week, we introduced you guys to the Snapcraft GUI application, whose main goal is to help application developers who want to distribute their projects across multiple GNU/Linux distributions using Canonical’s innovative Snap universal binary package format build Snappy packages more easily.

          • Ubuntu to Run Much Faster in Virtual Machines, as Well as When Using It Remotely

            After releasing the OTA-13 update for Ubuntu Phone and Ubuntu Tablet devices, Canonical is now working hard on putting all the pieces together for next month’s Ubuntu 16.10 (Yakkety Yak) operating system.

            Ubuntu 16.10 will be officially released on October 13, 2016, but until then we will be able to get an early taste of its new features by downloading the Final Beta ISO images, which for some of the opt-in flavors is called Beta 2. However, for Ubuntu itself, this will be the first and only Beta release.

          • Ubuntu 16.10 (Yakkety Yak) Final Beta Freeze Now in Effect, Lands September 22

            Today, September 21, 2016, Canonical’s Adam Conrad announced that the soon-to-be-released Ubuntu 16.10 (Yakkety Yak) Final Beta is now in freeze stage and will arrive, as initially planned, on September 22, 2016.

            However, early adopters should look for the release late Thursday or very early on Friday, September 23, because the Ubuntu developers are a little busy right now pushing last minute updates to the stable archive, and they also managed to land the new Linux 4.8 kernel packages earlier today, as reported right here on Softpedia.

          • Ubuntu 16.10 (Yakkety Yak) Is Now Officially Powered by Linux Kernel 4.8

            Ubuntu 16.10 being in development and all that, it usually gets at least a few updated packages every 24 hours, and today, September 21, 2016, we were surprised to see that the Linux 4.8 kernel packages have finally landed.

          • IBM Forges More OpenStack Ties with Canonical and Red Hat

            IBM has a slew of news announcements this week. Canonical, the company behind Ubuntu, is spreading out with its OpenStack eforts. It has announced that Ubuntu OpenStack is now available for IBM customers who want to manage their own OpenStack cloud across IBM platforms such as IBM z Systems, IBM LinuxONE and IBM Power Systems, including IBM’s newly announced OpenPOWER LC servers. This is an expansion of the companies’ hybrid cloud partnership, and many instances of OpenStack already run on top of Ubuntu. We covered the news in depth here.

            Meanwhile, the company launched many new products that consist of a combination of Power, z Systems, and storage, with cloud-ready functionality already bundled.

          • Ubuntu Wants Your Opinion On Scopes and Colors

            Got a spare five minutes? You can help the Canonical design out by filling in a questionnaire. The team is looking to “gather information about how people perceive colours and use Scopes.” The short questionnaire is split into two sections: colour and Scopes.

          • Ubuntu Smartphones / Tablets Are Getting Ubuntu Touch OTA-13 Update
          • An Easy Way To Set the Bing Image of the Day As Your Linux Wallpaper
          • Flavours and Variants

  • Devices/Embedded

    • A tiny Arduino Zero clone, and an Arduino for cosplayers

      Rabid Prototypes shipped a tiny Arduino Zero clone called the “Tau,” and launched an expanded Zero-like “Firecricket” for light, sound, and motion control.

      Early this year, before Boston-based Rabid Prototypes launched its second-generation, 36 x 18mm Neutrino 2.0 Arduino Zero clone on Kickstarter, it mounted a KS project for a smaller, 28 x 15mm “Tau” clone of the Arduino Zero. Due to ship in May, the Tau was delayed throughout the summer, but is finally shipping to backers. It’s also available for order to newcomers for $15, which is $5 more than the KS price. The original Neutrino 1.0 is once again back in stock, as well.

    • Hands-on with the quad-core ARM9 Roseapple Pi hacker SBC

      I use Raspberry Pi boards for several real-world jobs. My “STEAMpunk Conference Personality Identification Device” (aka: conference badge) uses a Pi to show an mp4 promotional video on its tiny 1.8-inch color TFT display while “orbing” its blue LED “ozone tube”, for added attention grabbing. Oh, it also includes my stage name “DR TORQ”, in big, bold antique-looking letters.

    • Phones

      • Tizen

        • Tizen Store in Indonesia now supports Iocal currency (IDR)

          The next target market for the launch of the Samsung Z2 is expected to be Indonesia. The Tizen store recently started supporting Indonesian language and also recently the Samsung Z2 had passed certification process in Indonesia. Judging by the pace at which these developments are taking place with respect to Tizen in the country, it seems like we are just a matter of days away from its official unveiling. Samsung have now introduced paid services to the Tizen Store in Indonesia to release paid apps into the country.

        • Tizen-Running Samsung Gear Fit 2 price reduced on Amazon

          There is no doubt Samsung has got one of the best fitness and activity tracker in the market in the Gear Fit 2. The Samsung Gear Fit 2 is not only a robust wearable device but also one with lots of awesome features and it is no wonder the Tizen-powered wearable doesn’t come cheap.

          The thing is at its current price of $179.99, the Gear Fit 2 offers users much more than its monetary worth but even at that, the wearable device has got a price slash on Amazon, so intended buyers will have some change when they purchase the Gear Fit 2 from Amazon.

      • Android

Free Software/Open Source

  • Open source software free (but not the free you’re thinking of)

    I like practical application. Recently, I’ve been trying to expand my horizons through studying Linux operating systems. I’ll use this opportunity to reinforce some of what I’ve learned and hopefully shed a little light on exactly what open source software is and how it’s used. For the sake of clarity, there is a lot more to the topic than discussed below, but we can only stuff so much info into the column!

    A common misconception is that open source software means free (as in beer). Open source software may be free to use or paid for, but the “free” in open source applies to the rights (as in speech) of the general public to use, distribute or modify the source software at will. Digging further, there are degrees of “openness” of open source software. As the term indicates, the source is open but generally the source is just the base element of the overall application. For instance, operating systems are typically comprised of a kernel and many other programs which work together, resulting in products like Microsoft Windows, macOS or Red Hat.

  • How do you get programmers to join your project?

    I inherited a project coded in $programming_language when the original developer quit and no one else stepped forward. It is currently hosted on GitHub and has a GPL 3 license.

    It’s a tool I use every day and I don’t want to see it die. I know very little $programming_language and very little GUI programming, so I can’t maintain it myself.

  • How open source is bringing blockchain to the enterprise

    During her part of the keynote address at IBM Edge 2016, Donna Dillenberger, IBM fellow, Watson Research Center, at IBM, demonstrated how analytics and transactions work together using The Linux Foundation’s version of blockchain, called Hyperledger.

  • Google’s Jigsaw subsidiary is building open-source AI tools to spot trolls

    Can Google bring peace to the web with machine learning? Jigsaw, a subsidiary of parent company Alphabet is certainly trying, building open-source AI tools designed to filter out abusive language. A new feature from Wired describes how the software has been trained on some 17 million comments left underneath New York Times stories, along with 13,000 discussions on Wikipedia pages. This data is labeled and then fed into the software — called Conversation AI — which begins to learn what bad comments look like.

  • Confessions of a Necromancer

    Bringing the dead machines to life was my passion for decades. Via the FFII I learned that people are the real challenge. I began to move into community building, spending a while helping Wikidot.com build their community. Yet in the end, there is nothing quite like writing some code and seeing a light turn on, and turn off again.

  • JPEG-Turbo Library 1.5.1 Released

    Version 1.5.1 of the libjpeg-turbo library is now available. For those that have somehow managed to never hear of it, libjpeg-turbo is a BSD-licensed, faster JPEG image codec than libjpeg and has various other feature differences.

  • Checking in on the Taiga project management tool

    Taiga is one of the most popular open source project management tools out there right now. It is known for being usable and having a beautiful interface, and Opensource.com listed it in both the Top 5 open source project management tools in 2015 and the Top 11 project management tools for 2016.

    I covered Taiga soon after it was released in October 2014, and two years later it’s time to check in and see how things are going for the new company. I spoke with co-CEO Enrique Posner about their 150,000 users, developer community, and what’s next.

  • Events

  • SaaS/Back End

  • Oracle/Java/LibreOffice

    • Ditching Microsoft Office? Tips on how to switch to LibreOffice

      Since open-source office suites started gaining popularity more than a decade ago, some large organizations have been turning away from Microsoft Office.

      The Italian ministry of defence’s migration of more than 120,000 PCs to the open-source LibreOffice is just the latest in a string of projects to replace Microsoft at European authorities.

      However, while momentum may be gathering, these organizations remain in the minority, and businesses generally haven’t followed suit in jumping off the Microsoft Office bandwagon.

    • Official Results of the 2016 Membership Committee Elections

      The board wants to take the opportunity to thank all past and new members of the Membership Committee for their service to the community, and all candidates for running. Congratulations to the newly elected committee members and their deputies!

  • CMS

    • A brief history of Drupal from 1.0 to 8.0

      Drupal began as a forum for a few friends to monitor their shared Internet connection, which “was expensive and being spliced between them,” according to Jared Whitehead’s The rise of Drupal and the fall of closed source. Today, it’s one of the most popular content management systems out there, competing with powerhouses like WordPress.

      So, what has the Drupal community done to ensure continued competitiveness, usability, and overall sustainability? In this article, I’ll walk you through Drupal’s evolution chronologically, including key design decisions and feature upgrades. My sources include the History of Drupal: from Drop 1.0 to Drupal 8.0 slideshow by WebSolutions HR and Drupal’s CHANGELOG.txt.

  • Education

  • Pseudo-Open Source (Openwashing)

  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC

  • Public Services/Government

    • Dear The Sun: we need to talk about your understanding of open source

      I want to talk to you about this article, and the claims it makes about open source software. I would have liked to chat to your cited expert, whom you’ve listed only as Neil Doyle. Sadly, the article fails to specify his area of expertise and both messages and emails to author Ryan Sabey asking for further information have gone unanswered. So I’m responding to it here, supported by some brilliant, contactable experts in security and open source.

      After sitting open-mouthed at the misinformation in this article for some time, I began to reach out to fellow tech experts to see if they felt the same. I first contacted Dr. Jessica Barker, the independent cybersecurity authority behind cyber.uk. I asked if she could address the concerns you raised that use of open source software in the public sector would pose security risks.

      [...]

      “The Sun seems to be implying that open source software is more vulnerable to attack than closed source, which is a sweeping misunderstanding that fails to take the complex nature of cybersecurity into account.

      Both open source and closed source software can be vulnerable to exploit, however these vulnerabilities are arguably more likely to be discovered in open source rather than closed source software as more people (including security researchers) are able to look at it. By its nature, it is publicly available and so it’s harder to hide malicious vulnerabilities”.

    • DOD Aims to Make Cybersecurity a Fundamental Part of Its Tech Mission
    • The Department of Software?

      Well-developed software can make or break modern weapons systems. Software problems initially hindered F-35 production, for example. The Department of Defense (DOD) set up a Digital Service team last year to help the military solve its information technology problems. Future work on autonomous systems will heavily rely on software development. Most importantly, the DOD will have to protect its own data. To improve the DOD’s use of software, the Center for a New American Security (CNAS) looked at how the Pentagon could better use “open source software.” While the DOD uses some open source software, its full utilization for military software development will require deeper changes to how the DOD approaches code.

    • John Weathersby: Selling Open Source to the Federal Government

      John Weathersby founded and ran the Open Source Software Institute to “promote the development and implementation of open source software solutions within U.S. federal, state, and local government agencies.” A worthy goal!

      But why stick to nothing but software? In 2014, Weathersby founded The Open Technology Center at Camp Shelby Joint Forces Training Center (in Mississippi), which is a “non-profit research and development entity sponsored by the Mississippi National Guard and U.S. Department of Homeland Security whose mission is to innovate and integrate open source software technologies for use within national defense and security organizations.”

      The OTC is doing some neat stuff, ranging from autonomous vehicles to making it easier for local governments to request, receive, and account for disaster recovery funds in the wake of an emergency. It’s all good! And it’s all about open source, which is why it’s worth listening to what Weathersby has to say.

  • Licensing/Legal

    • OSI Approved Licenses, a Foundation for Federal Source Code Policy

      The Federal Source Code memorandum includes a subject line that clearly communicates the federal government’s commitment, “Achieving Efficiency, Transparency, and Innovation through Reusable and Open Source Software,” and we applaud the OMB for their compressive work: introducing the benefits of open source software, development and communities to a bureaucracy often challenged to move away from traditional modes of practice and policy; engaging with the larger technology sector in a inclusive and comprehensive review of current, and potential future-states for software development and use within the government, and; actually delivering a policy that can serve as a foundation to build on.

    • GitHub repos now prominently show open-source licenses

      GitHub, the source code repository software company with a website where people host and collaborate on open-source software projects, today announced a small but meaningful update to repository pages online — now they prominently display which open-source licenses are used. When you click on the name of the license, you’ll be brought to the license for the repository.

      The change will be coming to GitHub Enterprise, just like the updated profiles, GitHub Projects tool, and pull request reviews that GitHub brought to the GitHub.com last week, GitHub product manager Ayman Nadeem wrote in a blog post.

  • Openness/Sharing/Collaboration

    • Open Data

      • The Future of Geomatics is Open Source

        With no disrespect intended to the other geomatics conferences around (and there are many with high-quality and extremely relevant programmes), the FOSS4G (‘Free and Open Source Software for Geospatial’) conferences are different. FOSS4G 2016 was held in the former plenary chamber of the German Bundestag in Bonn yet, despite this prestigious setting, the atmosphere was very laid-back. Participants dressed in shorts and FOSS4G T-shirts, a beer (or two) in the afternoon, a sense of humour throughout the whole event and a very vibrant social programme (the ice-breaker at the wonderful BaseCamp Hostel Bonn and the Rhine cruise were instant hits!) summed up the vibe at FOSS4G.

    • Open Hardware/Modding

      • UltraSoC lends debug to open-source ISA RISC-V

        RISC-V was originally designed to support computer architecture research and education, but as concern has grown in the industry about the increasing dominance of one or two proprietary microprocessor architectures, the RISC-V ISA has aroused interest as a potential open architecture for commercial use. A strong development and debug infrastructure is essential to the success of any chip architecture, and UltraSoC’s vendor-neutral, partnership-based approach, the company believes, complements the RISC-V open ISA principles.

  • Programming/Development

    • is go an acceptable cml?

      Yesterday I tried to summarize the things I know about Concurrent ML, and I came to the tentative conclusion that Go (and any Go-like system) was an acceptable CML. Turns out I was both wrong and right.

    • concurrent ml versus go

      Peoples! Lately I’ve been navigating the guile-ship through waters unknown. This post is something of an echolocation to figure out where the hell this ship is and where it should go.

      Concretely, I have been working on getting a nice lightweight concurrency system rolling for Guile. I’ll write more about that later, but you can think of it as being modelled on Go, though built as a library. (I had previously described it as “Erlang-like”, but that’s just not accurate.)

Leftovers

  • Why project managers need to lose control

    Being accountable for the planning, execution, and delivery of a project is demanding. Managing people, facilitating communication, resolving conflict, and mitigating risk are prerequisites to completing on schedule, and within an agreed budget. Add to this the often unpredictable nature of these factors and it’s little wonder that project managers feel a great burden of responsibility.

    Those suited to such a role are acutely aware of this responsibility and it’s something they take on quite willingly. They perceive the role of a project manager as a guardian presiding over a project in order to protect it from failure. They are the last line of defense, willing to take the fall should something go wrong. It’s an admirable position of leadership they seek to adopt, but the responsibilities attached to it can become overwhelming for even the most seasoned practitioners.

    That’s why I think they need to lose control.

  • Health/Nutrition

    • UN Agrees Political Declaration On Antibiotic Resistance

      The membership of the United Nations today agreed a political declaration on antimicrobial resistance, elevating the global fight against overuse and misuse of antibiotics – and lack of new antibiotics – to the highest political level. The declaration struck by world leaders at the UN General Assembly in New York includes mention of separating medicine prices from the cost of research and development, and calls on the UN secretary-general to create an interagency coordination group. Now – as framed by many governments, intergovernmental organisations and nongovernmental representatives – attention moves to implementation of actions aimed at staving off this threat to humanity itself.

  • Security

    • Bug that hit Firefox and Tor browsers was hard to spot—now we know why

      As a result, the cross-platform, malicious code-execution risk most recently visited users of browsers based on the Firefox Extended Release on September 3 and lasted until Tuesday, or a total of 17 days. The same Firefox version was vulnerable for an even longer window last year, starting on July 4 and lasting until August 11. The bug was scheduled to reappear for a few days in November and for five weeks in December and January. Both the Tor Browser and the production version of Firefox were vulnerable during similarly irregular windows of time.

    • Florida Man Charged With Hacking Linux Servers

      Donald Ryan Austin of South Florida has been arrested on charges of hacking into the networks of Linux Kernel Organization and Linux Foundation and installing malicious software. A US Department of Justice (DoJ) release said Austin, who is a computer programmer, is now out on bail and could face a maximum sentence of 10 years if convicted.

      According to the indictment, Austin stole the credentials of an employee to break into the Linux networks and installed rootkit and Trojan software apart from altering the servers. He has been charged with four counts of deliberate damage to a protected computer.

    • Why do hackers prefer Linux?

      Linux has much to offer any computer user, but it has proven to be particularly popular with hackers. A writer at The Merkle recently considered the reasons why hackers have so much love for Linux.

    • How To Get “Hollywood Hacker Feel” In Your Linux Command Line?

      A developer has created a command line utility which can give you the feel of Hollywood movie hacker. His tool replicates the decrypting text seen from the 1992 hacker movie Sneakers. The code is freely available on his GitHub page.

    • DDoS attacks: For the hell of it or targeted – how do you see them off?

      Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks can be painful and debilitating. How can you defend against them? Originally, out-of-band or scrubbing-centre DDoS protection was the only show in town, but another approach, inline mitigation, provides a viable and automatic alternative.

      DDoS attacks can be massive, in some cases reaching hundreds of Gbits/sec, but those mammoths are relatively rare. For the most part, attackers will flood companies with around 1 Gbit/sec of traffic or less. They’re also relatively short affairs, with most attacks lasting 30 minutes or less. This enables attackers to slow down computing resources or take them offline altogether while flying under the radar, making it especially difficult for companies to detect and stop them.

    • IoT and a new type of threat for Linux

      Linux has played a significant role in establishing IoT devices as increasingly important parts of our everyday lives, both at home and in the enterprise. Linux based OSes make it easy for developers to create applications that can run on anything, from a fridge to a car, and as a result 73 percent of IoT developers use Linux to run applications on.

      Now, however, questions of security are arising. With IoT gesturing in a brave new world of connected devices, businesses must cope with a greater number of entry points and vulnerabilities, with security the top concern in the industry.

      By placing such a burden on Linux’s security capabilities, there are now real fears that IoT devices will be left exposed and businesses will pay the price.

    • NIST Seeks Comments on Cybersecurity Reports

      The US National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has recently issued two draft reports on cybersecurity issues of interest to industrial IoT users, and is seeking industry comment before making their final revisions. One report describes the proposed manufacturing profile for NIST’s Cybersecurity Framework. The other addresses cryptography standards and practices for resource-constrained processors.

      Recognizing that the national and economic security of the United States depends on the reliable functioning of critical infrastructure, NIST created in 2014 a voluntary Cybersecurity Framework, which is a compendium of industry standards and best practices to help organizations manage cybersecurity risks. Created through collaboration between government and the private sector, the Framework helps guide cybersecurity activities and encourages organizations to consider cybersecurity risks as part of their risk management processes. Profiles, a key element of the Framework, help an organization align its cybersecurity activities with its business requirements, risk tolerances, and resources. A profile is intended both to help identify opportunities for improving cybersecurity as well as providing a touchstone to compare against in order to prioritize process improvement activities.

    • Hackers Able To Control Tesla S Systems From Twelve Miles Away

      Over the last few years, we’ve well documented the abysmal security in the internet of things space. And while refrigerators that leak your Gmail credentials are certainly problematic, the rise in exploitable vehicle network security is exponentially more worrying. Reports emerge almost monthly detailing how easy it is for hackers to bypass vehicle security, allowing them to at best fiddle with in-car systems like air conditioning, and at worst take total control of a compromised vehicle. It’s particularly problematic given these exploits may take years to identify and patch.

  • Defence/Aggression

    • DR Congo is once again spiraling into violence ahead of an election

      The headquarters of one the Democratic Republic of Congo’s main opposition parties was torched on Sept. 20. According to Reuters, at least two people died in the blaze. A day earlier, an anti-government protest turned deadly, after at least 17 people died in clashes, according to the country’s interior ministry. Opposition parties put the number at 53, while activists say 25 protesters were shot.

      The violence has once again left Africa’s largest country teetering on the brink of violence ahead of a crucial election. The resource-wealthy country has never experienced a peaceful transition and the political violence carries the fear that a civil war that left nearly four million people dead between 1996 and 2003 may resurface.

  • Finance

    • New Economic Study Indicates EU-Canada Trade Deal Will Cause ‘Unemployment, Inequality And Welfare Losses’

      As Techdirt noted back in January, it is astonishing that the TPP negotiations proceeded for years with almost no detailed analysis of whether they would be beneficial. It was only recently, after the text had been finalized, that a number of studies started to appear which explored the likely impact of TPP in some depth. Strikingly, every single one of them predicted almost no benefit for the US economy from the deal.

      The situation for TPP is rather better than for the other big US trade negotiations currently underway, TAFTA/TTIP, where attempts to model its impact are thin on the ground. The same is true for CETA, the EU-Canada trade deal that was supposedly “finished” two years ago, and yet still hasn’t been passed because of the text’s deep problems, not least because of its corporate sovereignty provisions. Despite the fact that CETA may be quite close to final ratification — although growing resistance to it in Europe may still stop it — we have very few studies of what benefits it might bring. The main one is the official analysis that was used to kick off the talks (pdf) in the first place, published in 2008.

    • ‘No TTIP, No CETA!’ Brussels Protests Against Free Trade

      Thousands of protesters marched through Brussels on Tuesday to demand the European Union abandon planned trans-atlantic free trade deals they say will worsen labor conditions and allow big business to challenge governments.

      Organizers, including unions, environmental and consumer groups and public health insurers, said between 10,000 and 15,000 people headed to the EU quarter of Brussels by early evening. Police put the number at 6,000.

    • ICIJ publishes leaked Bahamas info to offshore database

      New revelations published today by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, the German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung and news organizations from Europe, South America, Asia and Africa reveal fresh information about offshore companies in the Bahamas.

      Alongside detailed reporting, ICIJ, Süddeutsche Zeitung and other media partners are making details from the Bahamas corporate registry available to the public. This creates, for the first time, a free, online and publicly-searchable database of offshore companies set up in the island nation that has sometimes been called “The Switzerland of the West.”

      “We see it as a service to the public to make this basic kind of information openly available,” said Gerard Ryle, the director of ICIJ.

      “There is much evidence to suggest that where you have secrecy in the offshore world you have the potential for wrong doing. So let’s eliminate the secrecy.”

      The cache of documents from the island nation’s corporate registry provides names of directors and some owners of more than 175,000 Bahamian companies, trusts and foundations registered between 1990 and early 2016.

    • Legal doubt, political concerns, overshadow CETA-TTIP ahead of Bratislava Summit

      Tomorrow’s two day meeting of EU trade ministers in Bratislava is set to be interesting. A circle of rumours and uncertainty surround both TTIP and CETA, and both face a mountain of legal and political challenges that may still be their undoing.

      French Foreign Trade Minister has vowed to ask his colleagues that the TTIP talks are suspended (which may already de facto be the case.) In a sign of desperation, German minister for Economic Affairs Sigmar Gabriel flew to Canada last week to personally secure further concessions in CETA, despite the Canadian government and the Commission reaffirming that the negotiations are closed. This week, tens of thousands took to the streets in protest in Brussels and German cities, while sources all but confirm that TTIP will be effectively shelved until next summer, after no signs of progress from the US side and Brexit implications to mull over. All of these developments will need to be considered by EU ministers in Bratislava.

  • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

    • Your Vote For Jill Stein Is Not A Wasted Vote

      When Jill Stein ran as the Green Party’s presidential nominee in 2012, media attention to her candidacy was rare. Now, with two of the most unpopular presidential candidates in history, she has received widespread attention. There seems to be record interest in third party campaigns, including Libertarian Party candidate Gary Johnson.

      The Nation published a debate between Socialist Seattle City Council member Kshama Sawant and Nation contributor Joshua Holland.

      The editors gave Sawant’s column the negative headline—”Don’t Waste Your Vote On the Corporate Agenda—Vote for Jill Stein and the Greens”—but column does not hinge on loathing Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton. Rather, it makes a positive case for supporting Stein by primarily arguing the need for progressives to build an alternative to the two pro-capitalist political parties in America. It has a long-term focus on bringing about radical change.

    • Voting for Jill Stein is a Moral Imperative if George H.W. Bush Votes for Clinton

      When Seth MacFarlane warns people on Twitter that voting for Jill Stein will lead to Trump, he forgets that Hillary Clinton spread this photo of Barack Obama in 2008. President Obama’s campaign manager at the time described it as “the most shameful, offensive fear-mongering we’ve seen from either party in this election.” Furthermore, while Donald Trump is overtly xenophobic and utilizes racism to gain votes, Clinton also ran a 3 a.m. ad in 2008 that contained a “racist sub-message.” As stated by Harvard’s Orlando Patterson in The New York Times, “It is striking, too, that during the same weekend the ad was broadcast, Mrs. Clinton refused to state unambiguously that Mr. Obama is a Christian and has never been a Muslim.”

    • A Cop Killed a Black Man–Then Things Got ‘Ugly’

      Funny—some might say that the turn toward ugliness occurred in the afternoon, when a police officer fatally shot a black man.

    • Media Ask Which Candidate Can Better Exploit Our Irrational Fear of Terrorism

      Something missing from these reports is any discussion of the relative danger of terrorism. The reporters begin with the premise that voters are afraid of it, never challenging the underlying rationality of those fears.

      The reality is that terrorism remains, objectively, a very minor threat. (One is 82 times more likely to be killed falling out of bed than by a terrorist.) But by framing the issue as an urgent danger, with two candidates “dueling” over opposing ways of addressing this menace, the media further inflate terrorism’s importance. Can one even imagine Trump and Clinton “jockeying” for position on climate change, or violence against women and LGBT communities, or lowering heart disease—all of which, statistically, are far, far more dangerous than terrorism?

      This isn’t a new problem, of course. In nine Democratic primary debates, for example, the moderators asked a total of 30 questions about terrorism or ISIS, and not one question about poverty (FAIR.org, 5/27/16). (A 2011 study by Columbia’s school of public health estimated that 4.5 percent of all deaths in the United States are attributable to poverty.)

    • Hillary Clinton’s $21,667,000 “Speaking Fees” Fortune, Broken Down Speech by Speech

      And an aside…if you think Hillary’s $21,667,000 was a lot of income for the Clinton clan, you can also tack on an additional $26,630,000 for her ex-president hubby Bill Clinton, and his “speaking fees” collected during the same time period.

      4/18/2013, Morgan Stanley Washington, DC: $225,000
      4/24/2013, Deutsche Bank Washington, DC: $225,000
      4/24/2013, National Multi Housing Council Dallas, TX: $225,000
      4/30/2013, Fidelity Investments Naples, FL: $225,000
      5/8/2013, Gap, Inc. San Francisco, CA: $225,000
      5/14/2013, Apollo Management Holdings, LP New York, NY: $225,000
      5/16/2013, Itau BBA USA Securities New York, NY: $225,000
      5/21/2013, Verizon Communications, Inc. Washington, DC: $225,000
      5/29/2013, Sanford C. Bernstein and Co., LLC New York, NY: $225,000
      6/4/2013, The Goldman Sachs Group Palmetto Bluffs, SC: $225,000
      6/6/2013, Spencer Stuart New York, NY: $225,000
      6/16/2013, Society for Human Resource Management Chicago, IL: $285,000
      6/17/2013, Economic Club of Grand Rapids Grand Rapids, MI: $225,000
      6/20/2013, Boston Consulting Group, Inc. Boston, MA: $225,000
      6/20/2013, Let’s Talk Entertainment, Inc. Toronto, Canada: $250,000
      6/24/2013, American Jewish University Universal City, CA: $225,000
      6/24/2013, Kohlberg Kravis Roberts and Company, LP Palos Verdes, CA: $225,000
      7/11/2013, UBS Wealth Management New York, NY: $225,000
      8/7/2013, Global Business Travel Association San Diego, CA: $225,000
      8/12/2013, National Association of Chain Drug Stores Las Vegas, NV: $225,000
      9/18/2013, American Society for Clinical Pathology Chicago, IL: $225,000
      9/19/2013, American Society of Travel Agents, Inc. Miami, FL: $225,000
      10/4/2013, Long Island Association Long Island, NY: $225,000
      10/15/2013, National Association of Convenience Stores Atlanta, GA: $265,000
      10/23/2013, SAP Global Marketing, Inc. New York, NY: $225,000
      10/24/2013, Accenture New York, NY: $225,000
      10/24/2013, The Goldman Sachs Group New York, NY: $225,000
      10/27/2013, Beth El Synagogue Minneapolis, AIN: $225,000
      10/28/2013, Jewish United Fund/Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago Chicago, IL: $400,000
      10/29/2013, The Goldman Sachs Group Tuscon, AZ: $225,000
      11/4/2013, Mase Productions, Inc. Orlando, FL: $225,000
      11/4/2013, London Drugs, Ltd. Mississauga, ON: $225,000
      11/6/2013, Beaumont Health System Troy, 111: $305,000
      11/7/2013, Golden Tree Asset Management New York, NY: $275,000
      11/9/2013, National Association of Realtors San Francisco, CA: $225,000
      11/13/2013, Mediacorp Canada, Inc. Toronto, Canada: $225,000
      11/13/2013, Bank of America Bluffton, SC: $225,000
      11/14/2013, CB Richard Ellis, Inc. New York, NY: $250,000
      11/18/2013, CIIE Group Naples, FL: $225,000
      11/18/2013, Press Ganey Orlando, FL: $225,000
      11/21/2013, U.S. Green Building Council Philadelphia, PA: $225,000
      01/06/2014, GE Boca Raton, Fl.: $225,500
      01/27/2014, National Automobile Dealers Association New Orleans, La.: $325,500
      01/27/2014, Premier Health Alliance Miami, Fl.: $225,500
      02/06/2014, Salesforce.com Las Vegas, Nv.: $225,500
      02/17/2014, Novo Nordisk A/S Mexico City, Mexico: $125,000
      02/26/2014, Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society Orlando, Fl.: $225,500
      02/27/2014, A&E Television Networks New York, N.Y.: $280,000
      03/04/2014, Association of Corporate Counsel – Southern California Los Angeles, Ca.: $225,500
      03/05/2014, The Vancouver Board of Trade Vancouver, Canada: $275,500
      03/06/2014, tinePublic Inc. Calgary, Canada: $225,500
      03/13/2014, Pharmaceutical Care Management Association Orlando, Fl.: $225,500
      03/13/2014, Drug Chemical and Associated Technologies New York, N.Y.: $250,000
      03/18/2014, Xerox Corporation New York, N.Y.: $225,000
      03/18/2014, Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal Montreal, Canada: $275,000
      03/24/2014, Academic Partnerships Dallas, Tx.: $225,500
      04/08/2014, Market° Inc. San Francisco, Ca.: $225,500
      04/08/2014, World Affairs Council Portland, Or.: $250,500
      04/10/2014, Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries Inc. Las Vegas, Nv.: $225,500
      04/10/2014, Lees Talk Entertainment San Jose, Ca.: $265,000
      04/11/2014, California Medical Association (via satellite) San Diego, Ca.: $100,000
      05/06/2014, National Council for Behavioral Healthcare Washington D.C.: $225,500
      06/02/2014, International Deli-Dairy-Bakery Association Denver, Co.: $225,500
      06/02/2014, Lees Talk Entertainment Denver, Co.: $265,000
      06/10/2014, United Fresh Produce Association Chicago, II.: $225,000
      06/16/2014, tinePublic Inc. Toronto, Canada: $150,000
      06/18/2014, tinePublic Inc. Edmonton, Canada: $100,000
      06/20/2014, Innovation Arts and Entertainment Austin, Tx.: $150,000
      06/25/2014, Biotechnology Industry Organization San Diego, Ca.: $335,000
      06/25/2014, Innovation Arts and Entertainment San Francisco, Ca.: $150,000
      06/26/2014, GTCR Chicago, II.: $280,000
      07/22/2014, Knewton, Inc. San Francisco, Ca.: $225,500
      07/26/2014, Ameriprise Boston, Ma.: $225,500
      07/29/2014, Coming, Inc. Coming, N.Y.: $225,500
      08/28/2014, Nexenta Systems, Inc. San Francisco, Ca.: $300,000
      08/28/2014, Cisco Las Vegas, Nv.: $325,000
      09/04/2014, Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd LLP San Diego, Ca.: $225,500
      09/15/2014, Caridovascular Research Foundation Washington D.C.: $275,000
      10/02/2014, Commercial Real Estate Women Network Miami Beach, Fl.: $225,500
      10/06/2014, Canada 2020 Ottawa, Canada: $215,500
      10/07/2014, Deutsche Bank AG New York, N.Y.: $280,000
      10/08/2014, Advanced Medical Technology Association (AdvaMed) Chicago, II.: $265,000
      10/13/2014, Council of Insurance Agents and Brokers Colorado Springs, Co.: $225,500
      10/14/2014, Salesforce.com San Francisco, Ca.: $225,500
      10/14/2014, Qualcomm Incorporated San Diego, Ca.: $335,000
      12/04/2014, Massachusetts Conference for Women Boston, Ma.: $205,500
      01/21/2015, tinePublic Inc. Winnipeg, Canada: $262,000
      01/21/2015, tinePublic Inc. Saskatoon, Canada: $262,500
      01/22/2015, Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce Whistler, Canada: $150,000
      02/24/2015, Watermark Silicon Valley Conference for Women Santa Clara, Ca.: $225,500
      03/11/2015, eBay Inc. San Jose, Ca.: $315,000
      03/19/2015, American Camping Association Atlantic City, NJ.: $260,000

      Total: $21,667,000

  • Privacy/Surveillance

    • Belgium unveils plans for its own highly intrusive Snoopers’ Charter

      Belgium’s government has called for a bevy of intrusive surveillance powers. New capabilities included in the bill, which has been sent to Belgian parliament, include requiring Internet companies to cooperate with law enforcement agencies during their investigations; giving investigators the power to break into systems and access data, including by paying hackers to do so; and allowing undercover agents to break the law online.

      According to a report in the Belgian newspaper L’Echo, the new bill requires communications service providers to help the authorities with their investigation, and specifically mentions WhatsApp and Viber as services that will be required to comply. That would seem to raise the problem of end-to-end encryption that other countries are grappling with, including the UK, but it is not clear what the Belgian government hopes to do here.

    • ePrivacy Directive: The European Commission Must Commit to Confidentiality of the Communications

      The European Commission should submit this autumn a draft revision of the 2002 directive on privacy in the electronic communications sector, also called “ePrivacy directive”. This future draft follows a public consultation launched by the European Commission in April 2016 that La Quadrature answered. While for months the telecoms industry, GAFA and member States have been intensely lobbying against this fundamental text, the European Commission must resist these pressures and seriously take into account the proposals from civil society associations in order to produce legislation respectful of fundamental rights, including the right to encryption.

    • Fifteen secret warrants in force granting bulk data collection in UK

      There are 15 secret “directions” in force under the Telecommunications Act enabling the intelligence services to collect bulk data about online and phone traffic, a surveillance watchdog has revealed.

      The number of orders imposed on telephone and internet companies under section 94 of the 1984 legislation has been published for the first time by the interception of communications commissioner’s office (IOCCO). The firms involved have not been identified.

      A further eight directions have been made to provide for emergency services and to protect security personnel, according to a report on the operation of the rarely disclosed powers.

      Parliament does not have to be notified of section 94 directions and until last year they were not subject to formal oversight from any watchdog. Their operation will be reorganised under the investigatory powers bill although the IOCCO is pressing for stronger oversight of bulk communications data collection.

    • Sitting Down with a Post-9/11 Whistleblower

      In the years after 9/11, Thomas Drake, then a National Security Agency (NSA) executive, saw something he couldn’t abide: an NSA-led program named Stellarwind. The dragnet-surveillance operation was spying on American citizens using a combination of wiretapping and mass-data collection through the internet.

      Drake protested internally, feeling that Stellarwind violated the Fourth Amendment and was highly illegal—a warrantless surveillance of citizens on home soil. But Michael Hayden, then the head of the NSA who presided over the program, believed American spies had to do whatever it took to prevent another such tragedy.

    • Google backs off on previously announced Allo privacy feature

      When Allo was announced at Google’s I/O conference earlier this year, the messaging app was presented as a step forward for privacy. Alongside the end-to-end-encrypted Incognito Mode, the Allo team talked about bold new message retention practices, storing messages only transiently rather than indefinitely.

      But with the release of the app today, Google is backing off on some of those features.

      The version of Allo rolling out today will store all non-incognito messages by default — a clear change from Google’s earlier statements that the app would only store messages transiently and in non-identifiable form. The records will now persist until the user actively deletes them, giving Google default access to a full history of conversations in the app. Users can also avoid the logging by using Allo’s Incognito Mode, which is still fully end-to-end encrypted and unchanged from the initial announcement.

    • U.S. judge lists one year’s government electronic surveillance requests in D.C.

      A federal judge released a list Wednesday of all sealed requests made in Washington in 2012 for a rapidly growing form of government electronic surveillance, a step toward bringing more public scrutiny to secret law enforcement activities.

      The action came in a case brought by a journalist to unseal a much larger collection of information about court-ordered surveillance of Americans’ telephone and Internet activity in closed criminal investigations in the nation’s capital.

      Legal experts say even the selective release marks the first time a U.S. district court has made a systematic disclosure of how often law enforcement seeks court orders under a 1986 statute to obtain individuals’ electronic records from communication service providers. The release potentially could serve as a model for court disclosure elsewhere, several legal experts said.

    • Head of Dutch security service is fed up with privacy concerns

      Will people who value privacy know that they allowed a terrorist attack to take place? Rob Bertholee, head of the General Intelligence and Security Service of the Netherlands (AIVD) made this and other bold statements in a revealing interview, clearly showing his frustration about legitimate privacy concerns.

      In the interview (in the Dutch daily De Volkskrant) he demands access to any encrypted communications despite the major security implications this may have for millions of citizens. By taking this position he even goes against the position of the Dutch government made earlier this year, when it said it would: “not adopt restrictive legislative measures against the development, availability and use of encryption within the Netherlands.”. And when he is challenged by the interviewer, Huib Modderkolk, about the negative consequences of the new powers he demands, he responds by framing the issue as a false dichotomy between privacy and security.

      Bits of Freedom is worried that the head of the Dutch security service does not fully recognize that the right to privacy and the use of encryption is a core element of a secure and free society. It is not possible to weaken encryption just a little bit for “good causes” only. Introducing back doors would not only allow the Dutch security service to access encrypted communications but also make our communications vulnerable to criminals and foreign intelligence services.

    • ‘Snowden’ movie presents another side to whistleblower

      This is a pretty in-your-face criticism of empire, the kind that we rarely hear in the major media — even if the simple truth of it is well-known to tens of millions of Americans. The idea that foreign terrorism, which kills fewer Americans than lightning each year, could be used as an excuse for all kinds of abuses and interventions worldwide, is widely suppressed in the United States.

      We also learn from Snowden that he was morally repulsed by the war crimes that our government commits under the false pretext of “national security.” He explains to his coworkers, while working for Booz Allen Hamilton as a contractor for the CIA, that they could be criminally liable for killing civilians with drone strikes, and for other crimes.

  • Civil Rights/Policing

    • Police Accidentally Record Themselves Conspiring to Fabricate Criminal Charges Against Protester

      The ACLU of Connecticut is suing state police for fabricating retaliatory criminal charges against a protester after troopers were recorded discussing how to trump up charges against him. In what seems like an unlikely stroke of cosmic karma, the recording came about after a camera belonging to the protester, Michael Picard, was illegally seized by a trooper who didn’t know that it was recording and carried it back to his patrol car, where it then captured the troopers’ plotting.

      “Let’s give him something,” one trooper declared. Another suggested, “we can hit him with creating a public disturbance.” “Gotta cover our ass,” remarked a third.

    • Stein/Baraka statement on the death of Keith Lamont Scott

      Stein/Baraka statement on the death of Keith Lamont Scott and protests in Charlotte, NC – the demand is simple: stop the killing.

      Our hearts are breaking once again. Keith Lamont Scott, a disabled father of seven, was reportedly killed by police in Charlotte, North Carolina yesterday while sitting in a car reading a book. This gut-wrenching incident follows the death of Terence Crutcher earlier this week, who was killed by police with his hands up next to his car.

      The community response in Charlotte is an understandable expression of anguish and represents the unmet demand for justice.

    • Whistleblower air marshal is back to work, but on the ground

      The whistleblower won his job back thanks to the U.S. Supreme Court – a rare victory, and a vindication. But what does winning mean when you actually show up at work?

      For improperly fired air marshal Robert MacLean, it meant six months in a far-flung office with no colleagues and no duties. It meant complaints filed with various governmental agencies over continued retaliation. And, as of last month, it meant finally being sprung from near-solitary confinement and assigned to the Transportation Security Administration’s VIPER team in Washington D.C.

      That’s “Visible Intermodal Prevention and Response” to you and me. Its mission is counterterrorism, and it patrols aviation, rail and marine facilities nationwide.

      “I’m actually doing police work,” said MacLean, formerly of Ladera Ranch, who was blackballed from law enforcement after the TSA fired him for disclosing information that embarrassed the agency.

    • Whistleblower Jeffrey Sterling Appears to Have Suffered a Heart Attack in Prison

      Prison medical officials told Jeffrey two weeks ago that they would take him out to see a specialist, but that never happened. They told Jeffrey recently that it was the cardiologist who had cancelled the visit, a very unlikely proposition. In the meantime, he was forced to initiate something called the “Administrative Remedy Process,” which theoretically would force the warden to take action to help him. More on that in a moment.

      Holly Sterling has been tireless in her work to get her husband to a cardiologist. She asked Jeffrey’s sentencing judge, Leonie Brinkema, to intervene. Brinkema refused. She then enlisted the support of Norman Solomon’s Roots Action, which has asked supporters to call Warden Deborah Denham at 303-763-4300. In addition to the warden, Solomon recommends contacting the Bureau of Prisons’ North Central Regional Office by calling Sara M. Revell at 913-621-3939 or writing to her at ExecAssistant@bop.gov. Our grass roots pressure may be the only thing that gets Jeffrey Sterling to a cardiologist. It could save his life.

    • Florida Forces Students Without Parent Note To Stand During Pledge, National Anthem

      Florida’s Orange County Public Schools announced this week students must have parental permission if they want to kneel during the national anthem at football games or otherwise silently protest, such as refusing the say the pledge of allegiance.

      The move comes after students in a single school district knelt in solidarity with 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick’s protest against social injustice in America.

      Exercising First Amendment rights in Florida now requires parental permission.

    • Teenage Girl Dies After Incident at For-profit Group Home

      Maryland is one of several states that send difficult cases to AdvoServ because they cannot find beds and schooling closer to home. The company, which is owned by a private equity firm, is based in Delaware and reported last year that it cared for roughly 700 children and adults in that state, Florida, and New Jersey, and was expanding into Virginia.

      Gowen filed a lawsuit this summer in Delaware against AdvoServ , on behalf of a young resident who says he was left unsupervised and raped repeatedly by other clients at AdvoServ homes during more than four years there. His neck was also injured during a restraint performed by workers.

    • Documents From Chelsea Manning Show How Army Is Punishing Her For Suicide Attempt

      Chelsea Manning has released documents through the grassroots advocacy organization, Fight For the Future, which offer a glimpse into how the United States Army is punishing Manning for attempting suicide in July.

      On September 22, Manning will go before a three-person disciplinary board. The board will review evidence related to three administrative charges she faces and determine her punishment. It could involve indefinite solitary confinement, loss of access to the phone and law library, or an extension of the time before she is eligible for parole.

      One form indicates Manning has a “right to consult with an attorney” over the phone at her “own expense,” but she is not allowed to have her attorney with her at the hearing. She may “present during all open sessions” of the disciplinary board, make statements and present documentary evidence, call witnesses to present relevant testimony, and question “adverse witnesses” through the board’s president.

    • Another Judge Declares FBI’s Playpen Warrant Invalid, Suppresses All Evidence

      Cyrus Farivar of Ars Technica reports that another federal judge has found the warrant used by the FBI to deploy its Tor-busting malware is invalid. This finding isn’t unique. Multiple judges in various jurisdictions have found the warrant invalid due to Rule 41, which limits execution of warrants to the jurisdiction where they were issued. But only in a few of the dozens of cases stemming from the FBI’s child porn investigation has a judge ruled to suppress the evidence obtained by the FBI’s NIT.

    • Hillary Clinton To Silicon Valley: Nerd Harder, To Silence Terrorists, Nerds!

      With the explosive devices in NY and NJ from this past weekend, Hillary Clinton has decided, once again, that it’s time to blame Silicon Valley for not doing more to magically stop terrorists from terroristing.

    • ‘The Bodies of Prisoners Are Commodities’ – CounterSpin interview with Noelle Hanrahan on prison strike

      Corporate media could barely have shown less interest. One CBS report, an AP story, and some local accounts in Florida and Alabama were about it, as we tape on September 15. The US, we are told, is engaged in a newly serious conversation about mass incarceration. Leave it to elite media to think they can host that conversation without talking to incarcerated people.

      Joining us to talk about the strike and the issues behind it is Noelle Hanrahan. She’s an investigative journalist, a private investigator, and the director of the multimedia production studio Prison Radio. She joins us by phone from Philadelphia. Welcome back to CounterSpin, Noelle Hanrahan.

  • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

    • Cable Lobbyists Stop Using The Word Cable In Hopes You’ll Think Industry Has Evolved

      It often seems like the modern cable industry often goes out of its way to remain decidedly un-modern. Thanks to regulatory capture and limited competition, the sector consistently ranks among the very worst industries in terms of customer satisfaction and support. And whether it’s opposing net neutrality or fighting efforts to bring competition to the cable box, you’ll often find the industry’s top lobbying organization — the National Cable and Telecommunications Association at the forefront of fighting nearly every pro-consumer initiative that comes down the pike.

    • Here’s how small the North Korean Internet is

      I checked out all of them. Many are dead links, but some were active. One site, cooks.org.kp, contained information about North Korean cuisine. Curiously, gnu.rep.kp wasn’t about the GNU project. Rather, it contained science and technology news from North Korea.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Book Review: Arnold reviews “Economic Approaches to Intellectual Property”

      This new book by Kat Dr Nicola Searle (formerly Economist at the UKIPO and now a lecturer at Goldsmiths, University of London) and Martin Brassell (co-founder and Chief Executive of Inngot, an intellectual property valuation consultancy) provides an introduction to the economics of intellectual property for lawyers, managers and policymakers. Unlike many texts on the economics of IP, it assumes no prior knowledge of economics and begins with an introduction to economics which explains the basic principles. Moreover, it contains no equations and few graphs. While it does include a certain of amount of economic jargon, each term is carefully explained as it is introduced. By contrast, the book does assume a basic knowledge of copyrights, designs, patents and trade marks, although it explains the less commonly encountered rights such as geographical indications and plant breeders’ rights.

    • First Revised Articles Of Potential Treaty Protecting TK At WIPO Issued Today [Ed: By trying to distinguish between traditional knowledge and monopoly WIPO (run by former lobbyists and revolving doors) privatises ideas. See how it treats its own staff.]

      A suggestion from the United States, also in the policy objectives, is reflected in the alternative paragraph. It states that the instrument’s objective is “to benefit mankind by preserving to the holder of traditional knowledge certain limited in scope and duration rights in a manner conducive to social and economic welfare, balances rights and obligations, and that is mutually advantageous to holders and users of traditional knowledge”; as well as the “value of a vibrant public domain.”

      Since a “tiered approach” was considered at the last traditional knowledge (TK) IGC discussion, by which different rights might be awarded to different types of TK, the facilitators have provided tentative definitions in the use of terms for four types of TK: secret TK, sacred TK, narrowly diffused TK, and widely diffused TK.

    • Trademarks

      • Food companies have a taste for 3D trademarks

        Ferrero Group’s Daniele Lingua says his firm prefers three dimensional trade marks to trade dress

        Attendees heard from a range of counsel at food and beverage companies in the Buon appetito! IP & Food session at the AIPPI World Congress.

        Andrea Chianura of Lavazza in Italy gave an overview of the coffee company’s strategy.

    • Copyrights

      • European copyright reform coming – slowly

        Fundamental copyright proposals made by the European Commission will face “a barrage of criticism” and “reform will take some time”. Those were some of the predictions made about the Digital Single Market at the AIPPI World Congress

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DecorWhat Else is New


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