Links 1/8/2021: LibreOffice 7.2 RC2 and Lakka 3.3

Posted in News Roundup at 6:37 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Kernel Space

      • Linux 5.15 Adding Management Component Transport Protocol (MCTP)

        Linux 5.15 is positioned now to see a Management Component Transport Protocol (MCTP) implementation with the code now queued in net-next with this being a protocol for communication between management controllers and managed devices.

        The code now collected by net-next ahead of the Linux 5.15 merge window in a few weeks is the core implementation of MCTP. The Management Component Transport Protocol is defined by the Distributed Management Task Force for communicating between relevant controllers and their devices. MCTP can work with buses such as PCI Express, USB, I2C, SMBus, and others while being relevant not only for servers but also embedded devices. Intel NICs have been among the devices supporting MCTP over PCI Express now for a number of years.

      • Graphics Stack

        • Upcoming AMD CPU with RDNA1 graphics may be coming, spotted in Linux code

          Rumor mill: AMD appears to be readying another APU (accelerated processing unit) according to driver code spotted in the Linux 5.15 release, although it appears to be using an RDNA1-based integrated GPU rather than the second generation going into newer products.

          The graphics driver patches as reported by Phoronix on Friday appear to be referring to a processor with graphics codenamed “Cyan Sailfish.” The APU might be targeted for consumer or embedded applications, although the usage of the first-generation RDNA architecture is perhaps the most unexpected aspect of this. The past few generations of these processors with onboard graphics (all the way up to Ryzen 5000 APUs on both mobile and desktop) have continued to use AMD’s Vega architecture from 2017, albeit with various updates and refreshes over the years.

    • Applications

      • Best Free and Open Source Software – July 2021 Updates

        The table above shows our articles updated in July 2021.

        For our entire collection, check out the categories below. This is the largest compilation of recommended software. The collection includes hundreds of articles, with comprehensive sections on internet, graphics, games, programming, science, office, utilities, and more. Almost all of the software is free and open source.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • How To Install Zoom Video Conference Software in Linux System

        Online communications are not anymore limited to chatting and emailing. With high work efficiency, we need bufferless, smooth audio and video calling tools for client meetings, office gatherings, marketing, webinars, healthcare, and many more. Students, teachers, and all others professionals have been using Zoom as the primary communicating medium. Especially during the Covid Pandemic, the demand for Zoom video conference software has increased in almost every sector.

        Zoom allows hosting video conferences with a hundred people in the basic plan. Zoom is a cross-platform video conference software, and it is available for Windows, Mac, Linux, and smartphones. On Linux and other host devices, you can record Zoom meetings, schedule meetings, share files, and maintain chat and video calling rooms.

      • How To Install Gulp.js on Debian 10 – idroot

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Gulp.js on Debian 10. For those of you who didn’t know, Gulp.js is an open-source toolkit that helps developers automate the tasks in the development workflow. Gulp is useful to make automate processes and run repetitive tasks easily. It is a task runner built on Node.js and npm, used for automation of time-consuming and repetitive tasks involved in web development like minification, concatenation, cache busting, and many more.

        This article assumes you have at least basic knowledge of Linux, know how to use the shell, and most importantly, you host your site on your own VPS. The installation is quite simple and assumes you are running in the root account, if not you may need to add ‘sudo‘ to the commands to get root privileges. I will show you through the step-by-step installation of the Gulp.js on a Debian 10 (Buster).

      • Combine multiple images into a video using ffmpeg
      • how to gnu linux – thin provisioning kvm virtual machines with virt-manager (bigger than physical virtual harddisks)

        as in VirtualBox, is it possible to create bigger virtual harddisks on smaller physical harddisks, by think provisioning qcow2 format (kvm default)

      • Use the Linux terminal to see what files are on your computer | Opensource.com

        To list files on a computer with a graphical interface, you usually open a file manager (Files on Linux, Finder on MacOS, Windows Explorer on Windows), and look at the files.

        To list files in a terminal, you use the ls command to list all files in the current directory. The pwd commands tells you what directory you’re currently in.

      • How To Install Flatpak on AlmaLinux 8 – idroot

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Flatpak on AlmaLinux 8. For those of you who didn’t know, Flatpak is a universal system package, used for application virtualization, deployment, and mainly used for package management that almost works on all Linux environments.

        This article assumes you have at least basic knowledge of Linux, know how to use the shell, and most importantly, you host your site on your own VPS. The installation is quite simple and assumes you are running in the root account, if not you may need to add ‘sudo‘ to the commands to get root privileges. I will show you through the step-by-step installation of the Flatpak future of application distribution on AlmaLinux 8. You can follow the same instructions for Rocky Linux.

      • How to Enable Game Mode for Better Gaming Experience in Ubuntu Linux | UbuntuHandbook

        Want to get better performance when playing games in Linux? Try GameMode!

        GameMode is a free open-source Linux project allows games to request a set of optimizations be temporarily applied to the host and/or game process.

        The project was originally designed as a stop-gap solution to problems with Intel and AMD CPU powersave or ondemand governors. But now GameMode supports for optimizations including:

      • How to find a path of a Linux command like a pro

        One of the most common questions I get is how can I find a Linux command path that I just installed on Linux using a package manager such as apt/dnf command. We have many new developers coming from the Windows world. Many are first-time Linux users. Some are using Linux from WSL, and others are directly dealing with cloud servers over ssh. Let us see some common commands to list or find a path for Linux commands.

      • Setting up OwnTracks Recorder and OAuth2 with nginx, oauth2-proxy and podman | dennogumi.org

        One thing I always wanted to do when going on holiday is to track where I go, the places I’ve been, and see how much I’ve travelled around. This is true in particular when going to places where I walk around a lot (Japan stays at the top of the list, also for other reasons that are not related to this post). Something like viewing a map showing where you were, and where did you go, with optional export to KML or GPX to import into other programs like Marble.

        To my knowledge, there are a number of proprietary solutions to this problem, but in this case I value these kind of data quite a lot, so they are out of the question from the start. And so, I began my search for something I could use.

        I initially set up with Traccar but the sheer complexity of the program (not to mention that I relied on some features from a popular fork was off-putting. Also it did far more than what I wanted it to do, and the use case of the program was completely different from mine anyway. After a couple of unsuccessful tries, I left it to gather virtual dust on my server until I deleted it completely.

    • Games

      • Lutris 0.5.9 Beta Released With Epic Games Store Support, DXVK-NVAPI/DLSS, Gamescope

        The Lutris 0.5.9 beta delivers on initial support for the Epic Games Store, support for DXVK-NVAPI and DLSS, FidelityFX Super Resolution is now an exposed option for compatible Wine versions, Valve’s Gamescope Wayland game compositor is now an option, Esync usage is now enabled by default, the Dolphin emulator is now available as a game source, improved process monitoring, and other enhancements. It’s quite a hearty update for this game manager.

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • Xfce’s Apps Update for July 2021 Brings New Releases of Catfish, Mousepad, Sensors Plugin, and More

        July 2021 looks to have been another slow month for Xfce’s apps updates, but we did receive some important ones, starting with the Catfish file searching tool, which received not one but two releases that enabled the sidebar by default, added local source (pip) installation support, enabled support for searching compressed files, added full-text search in PDF documents, improved Wayland support, added support for message and troff mimetypes in full-text search, and added new persistent settings for searching file contents and thumbnail view.

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • KDE Connect on Windows and iOS, Nvidia open sources stuff, and FOSS can be profitable – Linux News

          In this one, we have Nvidia open sourcing more of their toolchain, Odoo proving that open source software can be not only profitable, but also successful, KDE connect expanding on Windows, and on iOS, and the Linux gaming landscape being quite redefined by the steam deck’s announcement.

        • Meeting with your mates — Kalendar week 8 (GSoC 2021) – Stuff I wrote down

          Last week’s large merge request added the ability for Kalendar to add, edit, view and delete todos alongside events. That MR was merged on Friday and you can now play around with it on Kalendar’s master branch!

          This week, a lot of time was spent polishing that MR as well as adding a few additions to make it even nicer for you to use todos. A new MR has also been added this week which adds a convenient new feature to the incidence creation process.

          Let’s go through what’s new!

        • The Kubuntu Focus Team Announces the Affordable Kubuntu Focus XE

          The Kubuntu Focus Team announces the affordable Focus XE 14-inch laptop. This ultra-portable and energy-efficient system is a great choice for developers, creators, and those who are looking for the best out-of-the-box Linux experience but don’t need the power, complexity, or expense of a dedicated GPU.

          Hardware highlights include the fast and power-efficient Intel 11th generation CPUs with graphics that are 3 times faster than the prior generation. Numerous high-speed audio and data ports include Thunderbolt 4 and the capacity to attach multiple 4K displays. Customers can customize their XE with up to 64GB of high-speed 3200Mhz Dual-Channel RAM, and up to 2T of NVMe storage.

        • June/July in KDE Itinerary

          Travel during COVID-19 requires certificates proving your are vaccinated, (negatively) tested or have recovered from an infection in many places. Official apps for that are only available on the major proprietary platforms, so for Plasma Mobile we need to take care of this ourselves.

          Technically those certificates are just QR codes, so an image viewer is all you would need. Once you are managing more than one such code, e.g. due to having had multiple tests or due to traveling with family, it becomes useful to also see the content in a human readable form.

          Based on the KHealthCertificate library this has been added to KDE Itinerary, and a standalone health certificate wallet app for Plasma Mobile is also in the works. So far the DIVOC and EU DGC formats are supported, covering Europe and India.

        • KDE e.V. is looking for a project lead/event manager for environmental sustainability project | KDE e.V.

          KDE e.V., the non-profit organisation supporting the KDE community, is looking for a great person to run a project related to the environmental sustainability of our software. The position we are looking to fill immediately is that of a project lead who can also do some event management duties. Please see the job ad for the project lead for more details about this employment opportunity. We are looking forward to your application.

      • GNOME Desktop/GTK

        • Martín Abente Lahaye: Portfolio 0.9.11

          On the visuals department, this new release brings a refreshed icon by @jimmac, which looks fantastic and takes it closer to the modern art style in GNOME.

          Regarding features, well, there’s quite a lot. The most noticeable one is the Trash folder.

    • Distributions

      • New Releases

        • Lakka 3.3 release

          New version of Lakka has been released!

          We are happy to announce new and updated version of Lakka.

      • Screenshots/Screencasts

        • Freespire 7.7

          Today we are looking at Freespire 7.7. It comes with Linux Kernel 5.4, XFCE 4.16.2, and uses about 700MB of ram when idling. Enjoy!

        • Freespire 7.7 Run Through

          In this video, we are looking at Freespire 7.7.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • Stay involved with Call for Code[Ed: Racist IBM (anti-blacks eugenics company) pretends to be ethical to sell more proprietary software e.g. Watson]

          Once again, the Call for Code community has answered the call. We are so grateful to everyone who helped support the 2021 Global Challenge to address climate change and to all of you who participated in this year’s competition. The societal challenges brought on by climate change continue to be some of the most pressing issues of our time. The Call for Code team extends our sincere appreciation to all of you who have joined the fight and are helping apply technology solutions to make a lasting difference.

          There are multiple ways you can continue to hone your skills and take on the greatest societal issues by contributing to our open source projects.


          Join the Call for Code for Racial Justice community in Slack to gain access to experts and collaborators, and get started supporting these initiatives.

        • Red Hat partners with Nutanix to deliver open hybrid multicloud solutions

          Red Hat and Nutanix announced a strategic partnership to enable a solution for building, scaling and managing cloud-native applications on-premises and in hybrid clouds. The collaboration brings together technologies, enabling installation, interoperability and management of Red Hat OpenShift and Red Hat Enterprise Linux with Nutanix Cloud Platform, including Nutanix AOS and AHV.

      • Debian Family

        • Sparky news 2021/07

          The 7th monthly Sparky project and donate report of 2021:

          – Linux kernel updated up to version 5.13.7 & 5.14-rc3
          – Added to repos: Komorebi wallpapers manager, Nuclear audio player, Shortwave radio player, Enve 2D animation software, Viper web browser, Systemback
          – preperation to a new stable version of Spaky 6.0 “Po Tolo” is on the way

        • Paul Wise: FLOSS Activities July 2021

          This month I didn’t have any particular focus. I just worked on issues in my info bubble.

        • WAGO Debuting Their New Edge Controller | ARC Advisory

          Edge Computer (752-9400/752-9401) is a device for Linux-savvy users that want an industrial grade computer to run Node RED, Grafana or edge applications, such as AWS IoT Greengrass. It comes with a Debian Linux operating system, a quad-core ATOM processor, 64 GB flash memory and either 4GB or 8GB RAM with memory able to be expanded via SSD HDD memory card. Control engineers and software developers can leverage the device’s openness to operate their edge of network applications.

      • Canonical/Ubuntu Family

        • Linux Mint Needs UI/UX and Graphics Designers for Redesigning its Dated Website [Ed: Does it really need a more bloated site with frameworks and poor compatibility with older browsers?]

          Linux Mint is an awesome Linux distribution and there is no doubt about it.

          There is also no doubt that its website looks like something that was made in the 2010s. This surely does not give a good first impression to people not familiar with the project.

          I know, it’s the quality of the product that matters the most but a nice packaging is a positive addition to any product.

          The good thing is that Linux Mint team has realized this. In the last few years, they have redesigned the Cinnamon Spice and the Linux Mint blog websites.

    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Best 13 Open-source Photography Workflow solutions and Adobe Lightroom alternatives

        Adobe Lightroom is a commercial enterprise-class image editing software for professionals photographers.

        Adobe has packed it with dozens of features that enhance photographer’s workflow and improve their productivity.

        Although it has an affordable paid subscription per month, you should consider open-source and free alternatives.

        Therefore, in this article, we collected the best open-source and free alternative for Adobe Lightroom. However, you should consider certain limitations and different workflow if you are an avid Lightroom user.

      • Ryujinx (Switch Emulator) Gets The Vulkan Treatment

        By using Vulkan, AMD and Intel users will see a massive performance upgrade, and not only this, but those who are using Intel’s integrated GPU will see a lot less graphical glitches. While those with NVIDIA may not see as big of a difference, according to the June 2021 progress report they will see “a small performance improvement in a few titles.”

      • Apache Month in Review: July 2021

        Welcome to the latest monthly overview of events from the Apache community. Here’s a summary of what happened in July…

      • Newsletter 101 – July 2021 news | ReactOS Project

        Hello ReactOS followers! This report covers changes in the project during February-July 2021. And we definitely have some things to highlight!

      • ReactOS “Open-Source Windows” Making Progress On x86_64, Multi-Monitor – Phoronix

        ReactOS as the long-running open-source project striving for Windows ABI compatibility has been making some significant progress this summer on various endeavors.

        ReactOS continues going strong after more than two decades for aspiring to be an open-source drop-in replacement to Windows. The open-source project today published their latest newsletter outlining many of their accomplishments so far this year.

      • Productivity Software/LibreOffice/Calligra

        • LibreOffice 7.2 RC2 is available for testing

          The LibreOffice Quality Assurance ( QA ) Team is happy to announce LibreOffice 7.2 Release Candidate 2 is available for testing!

          LibreOffice 7.2 will be released as final in mid August, 2021 ( Check the Release Plan for more information ) being LibreOffice 7.2 RC2 the fourth pre-release since the development of version 7.2 started at the end of November, 2020. Since the previous release, LibreOffice 7.2 RC1, 90 commits have been submitted to the code repository and 55 bugs have been fixed. Check the release notes to find the new features included in LibreOffice 7.2.

        • LibreOffice 7.2 RC2 Up For Testing With Its Initial GTK4 Work, Command Pop-Up / HUD

          LibreOffice 7.2 is preparing to ship this month while out today is LibreOffice 7.2 RC2 for facilitating last minute testing of this leading open-source office suite.

          LibreOffice 7.2 brings a command pop-up / heads-up display (HUD), initial GTK4 toolkit support, the ability to compile to WebAssembly, font caching for faster rendering, Calc spreadsheet performance improvements, the usual assortment of import/filter export work, and dropping its OpenGL-based drawing code in favor of routing all the code through Skia.

        • Week #7 – #8 – GSoC Weekly Report – 100 Paper Cuts
      • FSF

      • Programming/Development

        • Jamie McClelland: Fixing old PHP code

          I wrote a control panel in 2005 using PHP, without any framework. Who could have guessed it would still be in production now?

        • Steinar H. Gunderson: How to optimize anything

          Of course, most people stumble in step 1 (e.g. by making a benchmark that is non-representative, like PHP 8′s infamous JIT that helped 3x on the benchmark, but at most 3–5% on real code). And step 3 is naturally where all the magic happens. The cheapest wins often come out of a surprising profile, and the best wins often come from taking a step up and optimizing at a higher level. The most satisfying ideas are those that simplify code, so that you end up with just running less stuff and having things look more natural. (The worst ideas come when you skip step 2, because you end up optimizing what you think takes time, which is rarely the stuff that actually does.)

        • SDL 2.0.16 Is On The Way With Better Wayland Support, Improved PipeWire Integration [Ed: Well, SDL or SDL2 will need to delete GitHub to be taken seriously again. Now they're pushing proprietary software of Microsoft, so it is, in effect, a trap for developers (by extension)]

          SDL 2.0.16 is being prepared for release as the successor to SDL 2.0.14. Particularly for Linux users this SDL 2.0.16 update is significant with some key enhancements for this library that is common to multi-platform games and part of the Steam runtime.

          Exciting us the most with SDL 2.0.16 is that the Wayland support is “greatly improved” and additionally there is support for audio input/output using Pipewire. The native PipeWire support is great now that Fedora Workstation and others are beginning to ship it by default as an alternative to the likes of PulseAudio. 2021 is certainly the year PipeWire is beginning to see some healthy adoption and ready to take on Linux audio/video stream management. Among other Wayland improvements with SDL 2.0.16 is support for client-side decorations.

        • Code for fun: Children learn engineering through camp games
        • Kythera AI gives indie devs free access to games engine

          Kythera AI has released its AI middleware as free open-source software (FOSS), in partnership with the Linux Foundation’s new Open3D game engine (O3DE).

          Previously only available to commercial clients, Kythera AI’s toolset is now packaged with O3DE, becoming the first middleware provider to make its advanced AI solution available to any developer at any level. To ensure fairness and continuity of Kythera AI’s development, there is royalty and upfront licensing available for commercial products over a certain threshold. Indie game developers will likely not hit this threshold and if they start making a lot of money from their project, they can pay a royalty fee.

          Kythera AI consists of a broad range of AI tools that have been produced with veteran developers. Tools include a behaviour tree system and solutions for navigation of the ground and sky, which aims to solve the more time-consuming challenges for developers. Independent studios, who might previously have been limited by budget and resources, will now be able to develop games with AI as complex and engaging as that in AAA titles.

          “We’re big fans of Kythera AI and their toolset, including behaviour trees, navigation, and automatic level markup,” says Lloyd Tullues, CTO of Silicon-Valley-backed game studio Carbonated Inc, who, like Kythera AI, are founder members of the Open 3D Foundation. “Knowing that Kythera will be available with O3DE from the start is super exciting: developers from all over the world will now be able to leverage the same tools we’ve relied upon to create absolutely amazing experiences for their players.”

          This comes as a big development in the Scottish gaming and tech sector, with a Scottish company playing a major role in an international collaboration of high-profile tech organisations.

          “We are delighted to see a case study showcased in Scotland’s AI Strategy involved directly in founding a potentially revolutionary group in the field of game design and simulation,” says Gillian Docherty OBE, Chair of the Scottish AI Alliance. “We’re proud to see a Scottish company with the growth potential of Kythera AI showing leadership in their sector on the global stage. This recent announcement of Kythera’s position as the default AI for the new Open 3D Engine will no doubt hasten the wider adoption across both gaming and other sectors.”

          Matthew Jack, CEO of Kythera AI, says: “It was an exciting moment when we chose to join the O3DE Foundation as founder members and to supply the AI solution for the project. We have spent a long time developing a comprehensive toolset for game designers and AI developers to work with, and the idea of so many creatives getting access to those tools, regardless of their background, is an amazing thought. We can’t wait to see what incredible games come out of the community as a result of this access.”

        • Jussi Pakkanen: Looking at building O3DE with Meson, part II

          After the first post, some more time was spent on building O3DE with Meson. This is the second and most likely last post on the subject. Currently the repository builds all of AzCore basic code and a notable chunk of its Qt code. Tests are not built and there are some caveats on the existing code, which will be discussed below. The rest of the conversion would most likely be just more of the same and would probably not provide all that much new things to tackle.

        • Perl/Raku

          • TWC: Punting to MJD and Showing Q&D Geometry

            I’m always doing other things and then Sunday comes and I start thinking, “How much time do I have before it’s midnight in London?”

            When “The Perl Challenge” first started, I was happy to just ponder the problems. Then came the pandemic and I thought that I would use some of my then copious free time to contribute. Then time got not-so-copious. And more people started contributing to TWC, some people much more talented than me, it turns out.

            So I’ll take a stab at things when I can and I’ll still try to write a stand-alone script the way (I wish) I would at work, but my threatened laxness in writing things up will be more of a promise: Light banter to cast a veneer of confidence on the correctness of my results, anything else is extra.

          • Perl Weekly Challenge 123: Ugly Numbers and Square Points

            These are some answers to the Week 123 of the Perl Weekly Challenge organized by Mohammad S. Anwar.

        • Python

    • Standards/Consortia

  • Leftovers

    • Hardware

      • Itanium Waves Goodbye As Intel Delivers Last Shipments of Now Forgotten Processor Family

        Intel’s Itanium lineup of 64-bit processors was an attempt at making non-x86 designs that were meant for server and enterprise workloads. As of July 29th, Intel has shipped its last batch of Itanium processors to customers and thus ended the era of this processor family.

        Intel Itanium is a 64-bit processor family based on IA-64 Instruction Set Architecture (ISA). In a joint venture with Hewlett-Packard (HP), Intel decided to develop a new type of processor that would better suit the modern workloads and implement some new ideas in the processor architecture realm.

    • Health/Nutrition

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Proprietary

        • Security

          • BlackMatter ransomware gang rises from the ashes of DarkSide, REvil

            “The ransomware is provided for several different operating systems versions and architectures and is deliverable in a variety of formats, including a Windows variant with SafeMode support (EXE / Reflective DLL / PowerShell) and a Linux variant with NAS support: Synology, OpenMediaVault, FreeNAS (TrueNAS),” reported Recorded Future.

            “According to BlackMatter, the Windows ransomware variant was successfully tested on Windows Server 2003+ x86/x64 and Windows 7+ x64 / x86. The Linux ransomware variant was successfully tested on ESXI 5+, Ubuntu, Debian, and CentOs. Supported file systems for Linux include VMFS, VFFS, NFS, VSAN.”

          • CrowdSec v1.1.x Is Out! Here’s What’s New & How To Get Started .

            On July 8, 2021, the CrowdSec team released CrowdSec v1.1.x – the latest version of their free and open-source cybersecurity solution designed to protect Linux servers, services, containers, or virtual machines exposed on the Internet with a server-side agent – with new packages and repositories, as well as improvements to to the CrowdSec agent itself. LinuxSecurity spoke with the CrowdSec team to provide readers with insight into what they can expect from this exciting release, and how they can get started with CrowdSec v1.1.x.

          • Protect Online Privacy

            There are not many who know about Tor Browser and even fewer who actually use it in their daily lives. Tor Browser is known to be a notorious web browser that opens up the “Dark Web”, only used for buying or selling drugs. Also, the size of this Dark web is a hundred times more than the surface web. All of it is not true.

            Tor Browser just provides a safer way to access the internet. It protects its users’ identities by encrypting and bouncing users’ traffic through different devices. Facebook, Wikipedia, and many other popular websites are also available as .onion so that users can browse these websites privately.

            As with everything else, there are a few websites that do sell drugs but we can not call the entire network unsafe because of them. Bad actors are everywhere including the normal Internet we use through Google chrome or Firefox.

          • Hardening Executables

            Quite a while ago, Arch Linux has turned on many binary security features via compilation flags (2016) or turned off options that are known to help exploit software (debugging symbols, RPATH). Now we have 2021 and Arch Linux made good experience with the additional security options.

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • Violent crime is up. Expanding the surveillance state is not the solution [Ed: In many cases the surveillance itself is the crime, but selective enforcement means that high-level criminals who conduct the spying don't get punished for it]
            • USPS Gets Hit With Lawsuit Over Social Media Snooping – Reason.com

              Lawsuit filed over USPS surveillance. The nonprofit Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) is suing over a secretive social media surveillance program conducted by the U.S. Postal Service (USPS).

              As Reason noted in the August/September 2021 issue, USPS has been running an Internet Covert Operations Program (iCOP), in which U.S. Postal Inspection Service (USPIS) agents are tasked with monitoring the likes of Facebook, Parler, Twitter, and Telegram for information about protests and more. Agents with iCOP “assume fake identities online, use sophisticated intelligence tools and employ facial recognition software,” Yahoo News revealed last April.

    • Environment

      • Deadly Iowa tornado drives Kirt Walker from family farm to Nationwide CEO
      • Germany knew its disaster warning system wasn’t good enough – why wasn’t it improved?

        Germany announced this week that it would reform its disaster warning system after deadly flooding. But why didn’t this happen sooner?

      • The impacts of road traffic on urban air quality in Jinan based GWR and remote sensing

        As the largest developing country, China’s air quality has always been a focus of research. Air pollution is formed by a complex set of mechanisms, and various factors have been demonstrated to have an impact on it, including meteorological conditions, socio‐demographic characteristics, built environment factors, etc., among them the vehicle exhaust pollution paid more and more attention to. According to the pollutant analysis results released by Beijing, Jinan, Hangzhou, vehicle exhaust has surpassed coal as the main source of urban air pollution (especially PM2.5). By June 2020, the number of motor vehicles in China had reached 360 million, and traffic congestion had become the norm in many Chinese cities. As a result, the contribution rate of vehicle exhaust pollution to air quality will continuously increase1,2 (Liu et al. 2018; Huang et al. 2020a). Its contribution to PM2.5, volatile organic compounds (VOC), etc., were experimentally analyzed3,4,5,6,7,8 (Kazuo et al. 2019; Lin et al. 2020; Oish et al. 2019; Pathak et al. 2020; Wang et al. 2018;Watson et al. 2001). The influences of the traffic characteristics, traffic sources, traffic flow states, road grade, vehicle type, fuel, terrain, meteorological conditions, and spatial–temporal heterogeneity on exhaust emissions were studied9,10,11,12,13,14,15,16,17(Abdull et al. 2020; Bae et al. 2018; Beddows et al. 2020; Jeong et al. 2019; Huang et al. 2020b; Li et al. 2018; Lin et al. 2019; Liu et al. 2019; Pratama et al. 2019; Zhang et al. 2021). Traffic simulations, the OMG volume-source model, cellular automata, sensitivity analysis, and the fault tree model have also been used to study exhaust emissions, diffusion, and their influence on air pollution18,19,20,21,22,23 (Chen et al. 2020; Ibarra-Espinosa et al. 2020; Matzoros et al. 1992; Mdziel et al. 2020; Xu et al. 2020; Wang et al. 2019). Few studies were focus on the impacts of road network traffic characteristics (e.g., road density, intersection, and bus network density) on air quality, especially the road network traffic characteristics have the spatial heterogeneity, but there is spatial heterogeneity in air pollution and the processes of producing air pollution. It had been proved that GWR model considering the local effects of spatial objects (i.e., the spatial heterogeneity) was an effective tool to describe spatial heterogeneity24,25,26(Zhao et al. 2017; Fotheringham et al. 2017, 2019).

    • Finance

      • U.S. cities try to head off eviction wave as federal ban expires

        Rebecca, a 54-year-old retired nurse from Clearwater, Florida, said she was pressured to sign papers confirming she would pay extra rent – which she could not afford – to stay in her home after her landlord filed for an eviction in March.

        She had left her part-time tourism job after facing harassment from customers upset over COVID-19 precautions and had fallen behind on her $1,200 monthly rent and utility bills to owe $9,200.

        With the help of the Community Law Program, a local nonprofit, she eventually received rental assistance with federal coronavirus relief money, clearing her ledger and buying her time until at least October, she said over the phone.

        “In the end, everything was fine,” Rebecca, who asked that her last name not be used for privacy reasons, told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

      • Robinhood has become a cultural moment. Now even bankers worry its IPO will be a meme palooza [Ed: What banksters do is vastly worse than Robinhood, but they control the system and thus get away with all their thieving crimes]
    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • Campaign Finance Complaint Filed Against Rep. Matt Hall

        The Wisconsin-based Center for Media and Democracy is accusing them of fudging on campaign finance disclosures. The group earlier in the week had indicated it would be filing complaints against Michigan lawmakers and yesterday made good on the claim. The CMD filed its complaints with Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson.

        The self-proclaimed political watchdog group claims Representative Hall was given access to a software system that can be used to help manage campaigns and constituent communications planning. It claims the use of that software should have been reported as a campaign contribution. The source of the software is claimed to be the American Legislative Exchange Council. Representatives Hall and Lilly are listed on the Council website as Michigan State co-directors.

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • Media Roots Radio

        Whitney joins Robbie Martin to discuss the new wave of hype surrounding ‘Domestic Terrorism’, how the ‘War on Terror’ was merely a prelude to a larger domestic crackdown on political dissidents and the extreme measures taken in times of ‘Continuity of Government’

    • Freedom of Information/Freedom of the Press

    • Monopolies

      • 48 State AGs File Appeal In Antitrust Case Against Facebook

        The complaint, filed by 48 state attorneys general and led by New York Attorney General Letitia James, was dismissed in June, along with a complaint brought by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).

        The attorneys general alleged Facebook illegally maintained a social media monopoly by acquiring smaller competitors and preventing other platforms from operating with its software.

      • Patents

        • Is Dosing Regimen Patentable in China? [Ed: China lowering the patent bar to something laughable]
        • Assessment Of Inventive Step Of Medical Use Claims At The EPO: A Shift In Approach? [Ed: EPO has based everything on unlawful interpretations; why don't litigation firms speak out against it?]

          >At the European Patent Office (EPO), one of the first
          steps for assessing inventive step of a claim is to determine the
          closest prior art. For medical use claims, the closest prior art is
          typically held to be a document relating to the same medical use as
          that claimed – when selecting the closest prior art, the
          first consideration is that it should be directed to a similar
          purpose or effect as the invention (Guidelines for Examination
          at the EPO
          , G-VII, 5.1). Thus, where a claim is directed to
          ‘X for use in treating disease Y’, the closest prior art
          would normally be a document directed to the treatment of disease
          Y, which position bears out in the existing case law
          (e.g. T 2571/12). However, a recent decision – T
          2443/18 – issued by a technical Board of Appeal of the EPO,
          did not follow this approach.

          What happened?

          In T 2443/18, the claim in question was directed to the known
          drug tapentadol for use in the treatment of irritable bowel
          syndrome (IBS). Surprisingly, the Board of Appeal found that a
          document (D4) relating to tapentadol and confirming its efficacy in
          the treatment of visceral pain in animal models, was a suitable
          starting point giving a ‘workable route’ to the claimed
          invention. This was despite there being another prior art document
          (D3) on file directed to the use of a compound of the same
          functional class (another μ-opioid receptor agonist) in the
          treatment of IBS specifically (i.e. a document relating to the same
          purpose or effect as the invention). The Board noted that “if
          inventive step is to be denied, the choice of starting point needs
          no specific justification”, before going on to find that the
          claimed subject-matter lacked inventive step starting from D4. It
          also seems that additional weight was given to the relevance of D4
          based on experimental data and comments in the patent in suit which
          showed the benefits of tapentadol in the treatment of ‘visceral
          hypersensitivity and referred pain’ as ‘major symptoms’
          of IBS.

          Why did the Board diverge from the normal approach?

          When trying to convince the Board that a document directed
          specifically to the treatment of IBS should be considered the
          closest prior art, the patentee argued that a drug developer would
          typically seek to provide a suitable drug for a given medical
          indication, rather than investigate new medical indications for a
          known drug. The latter approach was also alleged by the patentee to
          risk obscuring the proper assessment of inventive step by
          impermissible hindsight knowledge of the invention. However, the
          Board of Appeal did not find these arguments convincing. The Board
          instead found that:

        • What’s happening with proposals for a WTO waiver of COVID-related IP? [Ed: How many millions of people need patents kill before patent extremists admit that innovation happens without patents and denies access to medicines?]

          If COVID-19 were a pandemic movie, we’d be very close to the end since we’ve identified several excellent vaccines; the conventional biomedical innovation narrative often ends with the product being fully developed. But we’ve still got a long way to go with COVID-19, and the biggest challenge is getting the vaccines to billions more people (and getting them to take the vaccines, but that’s a separate topic). Only 0.3% of global doses have been administered in low-income countries, many of which are confronting severe outbreaks. A staggering 1 million infections were reported in Africa in just one month, with few vaccines in sight. By some estimates, much of the world’s population won’t be vaccinated until well into 2023. Amid pledges of sharing vaccines, perhaps the most prominent policy debate today is about waiving intellectual property rights to COVID-19 technologies, including vaccines. In this post we explain what’s being proposed, what’s happening with the waiver negotiations, and what impact these negotiations might have.

          What does TRIPS require at baseline?

          Negotiations over the intellectual property rights supporting COVID-19 technologies are taking place against the backdrop of the World Trade Organization (WTO) Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS). The TRIPS Agreement creates obligations for WTO member states (with exceptions for least-developed countries). For example, member states must provide inventors with the opportunity to obtain patents that last for 20 years from the date of filing, and must provide for patent protection for pharmaceutical products, rather than processes alone.


          As we have explained, for COVID-19 vaccines, a waiver of patent rights alone would likely have little impact. Jorge Contreras has argued that “the main benefit of the waiver could be in the area of non-patent IP,” such as a country attempting to “mandate that foreign companies operating in the country disclose their proprietary manufacturing, storage, and testing information to local producers under a compulsory license.” To be clear, waiving trade secret laws related to COVID-19 vaccines would not automatically lead to sharing of manufacturing information, training of personnel, or access to scarce raw materials. These are significant barriers, as detailed by Christopher Rowland in his Washington Post account of Pfizer’s manufacturing troubles. Nor is it clear how a mandatory disclosure obligation would work against a recalcitrant manufacturer; there are few, if any, guides. As Contreras notes, mandatory trade secret transfer “would be unprecedented in the international arena.”

          An IP waiver is not the only international proposal for expanding access to COVID-related technologies. The G20 has floated a voluntary IP licensing scheme. The EU has issued its own WTO proposal that focuses on limiting export restrictions, expanding domestic manufacturing production, and operationalizing the sharing of manufacturing information and licensing. Wealthy countries like the United States can also donate excess supply—and help purchase additional doses for the rest of the world (though some barriers exist). As we stated in August of last year: “[T]he economic and public health impact of COVID-19 counsels that whatever risk exists from payers overpaying for a patent-protected COVID-19 vaccine is a mere rounding error compared to the enormous harm—both economic and human—from the pandemic. If Pfizer stands to reap $2 billion to end a scourge that has already claimed 700,000 lives and stands to cost $82 trillion globally, it’ll be worth it.” Since then, the number of lives claimed has increased nearly six-fold, and vaccine distribution has become an international tragedy. Expanding global access to effective COVID-19 vaccines should be an urgent priority for policymakers in the United States and abroad—no matter which policies end up helping us get there.

        • Chemours Company FC, LLC v. Darkin Industries, Ltd. (Fed. Cir. 2021) [Ed: Some patent maximalists still looking for ways to discredit the assessment of patent legitimacy/quality]

          The Federal Circuit, and the Court of Customs and Patent Appeals before it, generally reviewed decisions by the Patent and Trademark Office under the same standard applied to district court decisions, whether the factual basis for the decision was “clearly erroneous” (questions of law were, and are, decided de novo), acting as a check on the administrative agency’s interpretations of its precedent and Congress’s statutory mandates. That changed when the Supreme Court decided, in Dickinson v. Zurko (1999), pursuant to the provisions of the Administrative Procedures Act (5 U.S.C. §§ 551 et seq.) and specifically 5 U.S.C. § 706, that factual determinations should be upheld if supported by substantial evidence. This change in standard of review became even more important after enactment of the post-grant review procedures in the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act, and in particular the inter partes review (IPR) provisions (35 U.S.C. §§ 311 et seq.) with regard to obviousness determinations under 35 U.S.C. § 103. This is because while obviousness is a legal determination, it is based on factual determinations that have been much more likely to pass muster under substantial evidence review and has led the Federal Circuit generally to affirm decisions by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) on that basis. Not so in Chemours Company FC, LLC v. Darkin Industries, Ltd., decided last week, which showed perhaps the limits of deference the Court is willing to entertain in reviewing PTAB obviousness determinations.


          The Board found all claims in both patents to be obvious over the disclosure of U.S. Patent No 6,541,588. The basis for the determination was that the ’588 patent teaches that cables can be insulated at speeds similar to the range recited in the ’609 patent claims (in one example being 24 g/10 min, which is close to the lower limit of Chemour’s range, 27 g/10 min). Significantly, the ’588 patent also teaches that it is important to maintain “a very narrow molecular weight distribution” in the polymer (which in a footnote the Court explains means “[a] polymer with a narrower molecular weight distribution has more polymer chains that are of similar lengths, while a broad molecular weight distribution fluorinated ethylene propylene (“FEP”) has more variation in polymer chain lengths”). The Board found that “a skilled artisan would have been motivated to increase the melt flow rate of [the '588 patent]‘s preferred embodiment to within the claimed range in order to coat wires faster.” Notwithstanding the narrow range teaching regarding polymer molecular weight in the ’588 patent, the Board further found that “it is not clear on this fully developed record why the skilled artisan would have been motivated to maintain such a narrow molecular weight distribution when seeking to achieve even higher coating speeds” and that the ’588 patent specification “lacked specificity” regarding the metes and bounds of “narrow” and “broad” molecular weight ranges. This was enough for the Board to opine that “this purported discovery would not have prevented the skilled artisan, at the time of the invention of the ’609 patent, from considering other techniques—such as broadening the polymer’s molecular weight distribution—to achieve higher coating speeds . . . .” Based on these factual determinations, the PTAB held the claims in the ’609 and ’431 patents were obvious, and Chemour appealed.

        • Latest guide to preparing for the EQE is now online [Ed: It is illegal and a total disaster, but EPO management keeps lying about it, insulting the victims]

          The 10th edition of the guide to preparing for the European qualifying examination (EQE) is now available online.

          In addition to official sources, this edition draws on the experience of past candidates, as well as their tutors and supervisors. Further to the EQE going digital in March, it also features information about the e-EQE and gives candidates a head-start on how to prepare in general by providing…

        • German Federal Constitutional Court clears the way for the Unified Patent Court [Ed: No, only for ratification in Germany, which isn't enough (UK can never ratify, so UPC is basically impossible]

          The German Federal Constitutional Court (FCC) dismissed two motions for interim measures against the German act approving the Agreement on a Unified Patent Court (UPCA). The way is thus clear for German ratification, an essential milestone for the start of the Unified Patent Court (UPC) and the Unitary Patent System.

        • Amendment of German patent law: small step or giant leap for proportionality?

          When this Kat started his tenure as a GuestKat two years ago, his first post was on the first anti-anti-suit injunction issued in Europe, by the Munich Regional Court. For his parting post, he returns to Germany and patent injunctions.

          As readers may know, the German parliament recently adopted amendments of the German Patent Act (GPA) as the final step of a reform process that spanned nearly two years [final version (German) here, earlier Katpost here, news coverage here]. Though the amendment contains various reforms – including an effort obtain quicker validity decisions to close the “injunction gap”, see here – probably the most salient change is to §139, on the patentee’s entitlement to an injunction.

          According to §139 GPA, a person infringing a patent may “be sued by the aggrieved party for cessation and desistance”, and the reform adds to this the following proviso…


          This Kat quite agrees that the significance of this reform, in Europe’s biggest [here], most patentee-friendly [e.g. here] and perhaps most conservative jurisdiction, is clearly noteworthy. The amendment acknowledges that patent rights are not absolute and empowers German courts to mitigate hardship when the specifics of the case call for it. Their case law, in turn, may inspire other European patent courts to follow suit.

        • Introduction To Biological Deposits At The European Patent Office And Under The Budapest Treaty

          This introductory briefing sets out what a biological deposit is, why a biological deposit may be needed, and basic requirements for making a biological deposit and relying on it in a patent application, with a particular focus on practice before the European Patent Office (EPO). A complementary briefing goes on to consider strategic aspects relating to biological deposits, including how it might be possible to remedy certain deficiencies relating to them.

          What is a biological deposit and why might it be required?

          It is a fundamental requirement of patent law that, in exchange for a monopoly right, a patent must disclose the claimed invention in sufficient detail to allow a person skilled in the relevant technical field to reproduce the invention. This requirement is known as sufficiency of disclosure in European practice and enablement in the US.

        • Oriental Yuhong’s HDPE Products Obtain European Invention Patent [Ed: There’s no such thing as “European Invention Patent” but European Patent and European Patents are not particularly good anymore]

          Recently Beijing Oriental Yuhong Waterproof Technology Company Ltd. (hereinafter referred to as the Oriental Yuhong) was granted an invention patent (Patent No.: EP3683284) by the European Patent Office (EPO), one of the core outcomes during its R&D of the HDPE products.

        • EPO Decision T 96/20: Does This Raise The Inventive Step Bar For Medical Use Inventions? [Ed: Of course the litigation giants will just look the other way and not mention that the EPO’s Boards of Appeal are rigged and stacked (guess in whose favour)]

          The recent decision by the European Patent Office (EPO)’s Technical Board of Appeal 3.3.04 in T 96/20 appears, at first glance, to have raised the bar for acknowledging the inventive step of medical use claims in a situation where the prior art discloses that the claimed therapeutic is undergoing clinical trials. However, a broader view suggests that a more nuanced approach is required.

        • FOSS Patents: InterDigital’s hole-in-one in UK court builds tremendous pressure on Lenovo (Motorola Mobility) to take global cellular SEP license pursuant to Unwired Planet

          This the second SEP news today. The first one was Nokia’s vehicle-level license deal (as industry sources meanwhile agree) with a car maker. And again, a standard-essential patent (SEP) holder has scored a breakthrough victory: InterDigital against Lenovo and its Motorola Mobility handset division.

          With all that’s going on, a rational analyst can’t help but be bullish about the near-term and mid-term outlook for SEP holders. Car-level licensing and royalty rates consistent with the Avanci pool rate are the inevitable outcome of the “automotive SEP wars.” And while Apple may be able to avoid taking a global portfolio license from non-practicing entity Optis unless the deal is right, Apple is what it is: unique. I’m a big Apple critic, but there’s nothing else quite like Apple. By contrast, Lenovo’s Motorola Mobility has far less brand loyalty, there’s no shortage of Android-powered substitutes, and you’re not going to see the likes of Vodafone lobbying the UK government for an amendment to the country’s patent or antitrust laws only to bail out Motorola. They’re probably not even going to inconvenience themselves and buy Moto phones abroad. If Lenovo decided to leave the UK market, it would lose almost all of its UK sales.

        • GenScript Announces Notice of Allowance for U.S. Patent Application for SARS-CoV-2 Surrogate Virus Neutralization Kit [Ed: Forming yet more monopolies around COVID-19 instead of tackling the problem as a matter of priority]
        • Cavitation Technologies, Inc. (CVAT) Significantly Expands Patent Portfolio [Ed: Fails to note that European Patents aren't often legitimate (not anymore) because the law isn't being obeyed.]

          Cavitation Technologies, Inc. (OTCQB: CVAT; Berlin: WTC) today announced a significant expansion of its global patent portfolio, demonstrating its ongoing commitment to innovation and leadership in cavitation systems and processes.

          “From the beginning, we recognized the importance of developing and then protecting our technology,” said Roman Gordon, Global Technology Manager. “As a pioneer in cavitation, we know via our priority dates that we were and are ahead of the competition. To have our creativity recognized by patent offices around the globe (United States, Canada, Europe, Argentina, Brazil, Mexico, and others) is a source of pride for the entire CTI team and should be very comforting to our Customers, Partners and Investors.”


          In 2021 the company received four additional patents including one issued by European Patent Office (EPO).

        • Supreme Court Assigns PTO Director a New Gig: Reviewing the PTAB’s Inter Partes Decisions [Ed: USPTO should vastly expand PTAB if it truly values patent quality rather than patent maximalist extravaganza]

          Through a splintered set of opinions, the Supreme Court of the United States held that appointment of administrative patent judges (APJs) serving on the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) violated the Appointments Clause of the Constitution, and the proper remedy was to vest the US Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) Director (Director) with discretion to overturn the PTAB’s decisions. United States v. Arthrex, Inc., Case Nos. 19–1434; –1452; –1458 (June 21, 2021). Chief Justice John Roberts delivered the opinion of the Court, with opinions by Justice Neil Gorsuch (concurring in part and dissenting in part), Justice Stephen Breyer (concurring in part in the judgment and dissenting in part) and Justice Clarence Thomas (dissenting).

        • VOK DAMS Produces Digital European Inventor Award 2021 for the European Patent Office [Ed: EPO "mafia" misuses EPO funds for reputation laundering purposes; this helps distract from the crimes and buy loads of self-serving puff pieces. This does not bother the media, which becomes complicit in cover-up of all the crimes.]
        • EPO Oppositions – Update [Ed: Quality has fallen

          Since 2018 the EPO has not reported the numbers of patents opposed but based on information in the “Bulletin Search” database that number decreased in 2020. However, the number was still consistent with a general level of patents opposed which is around 25% higher than the more or less uniform level which prevailed from 2011 to 2016. The increased level of patents opposed each year followed, but has by no means kept pace with, increases in the numbers of patents granted.

        • [Older] Federal Circuit Lacks Appellate Jurisdiction over Standalone Walker Process Claims

          In 2006, Phoenix Services and Mark Fisher (collectively, Phoenix) acquired a company called Heat On-The-Fly and its patent to protect a purported proprietary fracking process. Heat-On-The-Fly, and later Phoenix, sought to enforce the patent against numerous parties. During the patent application process, however, Heat On-The-Fly had failed to disclose numerous public uses of the fracking process prior to the application filing. In 2018, in an unrelated case, Energy Heating, LLC v. Heat On-The-Fly, the Federal Circuit, held that “failure to disclose prior uses of the fracking process rendered the . . . patent unenforceable due to inequitable conduct.” The plaintiffs in the case at hand, Ronald Chandler, Chandler MFG., Newco Enterprises and Supertherm Heating Services (collectively, Chandler), alleged that Phoenix’s continued enforcement of the patent violated Walker Process pursuant to § 2 of the Sherman Act.

        • European Patent Office Further Extends Pilot For Opposition Hearings By Videoconference [Ed: This is totally illegal, but criminal behaviour, court stacking and overt corruption don’t seem to bother the litigation ‘industry’]

          In light of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the EPO has decided to further extend the pilot project for conducting opposition hearings by VICO until 31 January 2022.

          The Decision of the President of the EPO, dated 14 May 2021, states that where there are serious reasons preventing the use of videoconferencing for oral proceedings in opposition, oral proceedings will be postponed until after that date. To read the EPO’s announcement in full, click here.

        • Latest news on IP and coronavirus in Europe [Ed: Oh! My! Lord! Amy Sandys has turned into a laughable copypasta parrot of EPO lies; she’s literally helping to spread propaganda of criminals who hijacked the EPO! JUVE has been warped into an advertising board (many new pages like this one) for litigation firms but it’s thinly covered as a news site, where even the “news” is oftentimes creative marketing.]
        • Arthrex will make IPRs more expensive and uncertain, and the USPTO Director more powerful [Ed: When patent extremists dislike a decision it means it's making society better off]
        • What to Know about the Supreme Court’s Arthrex Decision
        • Conception for Joint Inventors [Ed: Actually, to game the honour system, over time more people throw their names into patent applications, lending to this false idea that patents need loads of brain power]

          Most patents involve two or more joint inventors who all claim to have contributed significantly to the invention. Conception of the invention is typically seen as the critical legal determinant of invention and some courts have written that each joint inventor must have contributed substantially to the conception of the invention.* Conception is typically referred to as a mental act. The MPEP, for example, includes a statement in all-caps that “CONCEPTION MUST BE DONE IN THE MIND OF THE INVENTOR.” MPEP 2138.04(I). The basic rule is that the inventor must have a “definite and permanent idea of the complete and operable invention.”

          The mind-of-the-inventor doctrines have several problems, today I’m thinking about one relating to joint inventorship. As far as I know, the definitional cases regarding conception refer to “the inventor” as if inventorship is a solo process. But 75% of new patents list two or more inventors who are unlikely to have experienced joint or simultaneous conception. It turns out though that simultaneous conception is not required. Rather, this is how it works.

        • PTO Rules Not Subject to the Paperwork Reduction Act [Ed: Well, “Inventor Gilbert Hyatt” is actually a charlatan]

          Inventor Gilbert Hyatt and the American Association for Equitable Treatment (AAET) contended that patent applicants should not have to comply with certain PTO rules, alleging that the rules violated the PRA, which Congress passed to reduce the burden imposed on the public when responding to federal agencies’ requests for information from private individuals. The PRA requires federal agencies engaged in “collections of information” to first submit them to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for approval and an assignment of a control number. Collections of things other than “information” do not need to receive OMB approval, and the PRA applies only to “collections” seeking information through identical questions or requirements imposed on 10 or more people. Thus, the PRA and its regulations expressly exclude individualized communications from PRA applicability.

        • Software Patents

          • Sensormatic Electronics, LLC v. Wyze Labs, Inc. (Fed. Cir. 2021)

            Sensormatic asserted U.S. Patents 7,730,534, 7,936,370, 7,954,129, 8,208,019, and 8,610,772 against Wyze in the District of Delaware, alleging infringement. Wyze moved the District Court to dismiss under Rule 12(c), on the grounds that the claims are directed to ineligible subject matter. The motion was granted. Sensormatic appealed.

            In Alice v. CLS Bank, the Supreme Court set forth a two-part test to determine whether claims are directed to patent-eligible subject matter under 35 U.S.C. § 101. One must first decide whether the claim at hand involves a judicially-excluded law of nature, a natural phenomenon, or an abstract idea. If so, then one must further decide whether any element or combination of elements in the claim is sufficient to ensure that the claim amounts to significantly more than the judicial exclusion. But elements or combinations of elements that are well-understood, routine, and conventional will not lift the claim over the § 101 hurdle. While this inquiry is generally carried out as a matter of law, factual issues can come into play when determining whether something is well-understood, routine, and conventional.


            In other words, an invention that is a concrete and tangible machine, and claimed as such, can be found to be “abstract” if the claimed subject matter is otherwise abstract. While this makes sense to a point, it ultimately requires that the finder of fact (or of law — patent eligibility is a strange amalgam of both) decide whether certain claim elements can be ignored for purposes of the § 101 inquiry. Putting a power this subjective in the hands of even a federal judge, much less an examiner or a PTAB judge, can be problematic.

            Indeed, the Court’s statement quoted above may be in response to the recent case of Yu v. Apple, a controversial split decision that found a digital camera with a particular hardware arrangement performing particular functions to be ineligible. While the Court may have made this statement for explanatory reasons, it is likely to be taken as a warning shot. Whatever the Court is trying to say, patentees are likely to hear, “All Your Devices Belong to Us!” This is a reminder that the term “abstract” is not meant to be taken literally, and any statutory category of claims can be abstract (even if you can drop it on your foot).

          • DABUS Gets Its First Patent in South Africa Under Formalities Examination [Ed: South Africa now allows computer-generated fake ‘inventions’. Yet another crisis for South Africa…]
          • Patently brilliant… AI listed as inventor for first time

            The patent granted last week to a law professor based in Britain was, in most respects, not unusual. It was for interlocking food containers that are easy for robots to grasp and stack, and the creator is listed as Dabus. The difference is that Dabus is not human.

          • Patently brilliant: AI listed as inventor for first time
          • DABUS: South Africa issues first-ever patent with AI inventor [Ed: And the propaganda mill of litigation companies cheers the day patents can be lowered to the bottom of the barrel]
          • DABUS the AI system confirmed as the inventor and Dr Stephen Thaler as the owner of the DABUS inventions

            Today a second country has confirmed that DABUS, an artificial intelligence system, can be named as the inventor in a patent and that Dr Stephen Thaler as the rightful owner of the DABUS inventions.

            Following from patent applications filed by Williams Powell, first in the United Kingdom and at the European Patent Office, then by way of an international (PCT) application, the Australian Federal Court in its judgement in Thaler v Commissioner of Patents [2021] FCA 879, handed down today 30th July 2021, has confirmed the patentability of inventions made by AI systems, specifically the DABUS inventions.

          • South Africa awards world’s first AI-invented patent, but it may not be that big a deal

            As has been extensively chronicled, the applications seeking patent protection for them have been rejected at the EPO, the UK IP Office…

          • How J.E.M. and Chakrabarty Make the Case for DABUS

            J.E.M. involved the question of utility patent protection for sexually reproducing plants, including crops and flowering plants, under 35 U.S.C. § 101. Plants had historically been protected under the Plant Variety Protection Act (PVPA), 7 U.S.C. § 2321, and the Plant Patent Act (PPA, enacted in 1930), 35 U.S.C. §§ 161-164. The Supreme Court rejected the argument that the PVPA and the PPA were exclusive means for plant protection. Justice Clarence Thomas, the author of the majority opinion, noted that Congress plainly contemplated that patent laws be given wide scope, citing Chakrabarty. The Court stated, “As in Chakrabarty, we decline to narrow the reach of Section 101 where Congress has given us no indication that it intends this result.” The Court explained the subject matter provisions of the patent law have been cast in broad terms, to fulfill the constitutional goal of “promoting the Progress of Science and the useful Arts, with all that means for the social and economic benefit envisioned by [Thomas] Jefferson.” As further stated, Section 101 is a “dynamic provision designed to encompass new and unforeseen inventions.” The Court concluded that absent a clear intent to the contrary, they would not interpret a statutory change as an affirmative decision by Congress to deny protection under Section 101.

          • I’m sorry Dave I’m afraid I invented that: Australian court finds AI systems can be recognised under patent law

            An artificial intelligence system is capable of being an “inventor” under Australian patent law, the federal court has ruled, in a decision that could have wider intellectual property implications.

            University of Surrey professor Ryan Abbott has launched more than a dozen patent applications across the globe, including in the UK, US, New Zealand and Australia, on behalf of US-based Dr Stephen Thaler. They seek to have Thaler’s artificial intelligence device known as Dabus (a device for the autonomous bootstrapping of unified sentience) listed as the inventor.

            The applications claimed Dabus, which is made up of artificial neural networks, invented an emergency warning light and a type of food container, among other inventions.

            Several countries, including Australia, had rejected the applications, stating a human must be named the inventor. The decision by the Australian deputy commissioner of patents in February this year found that although “inventor” was not defined in the Patents Act when it was written in 1991 it would have been understood to mean natural persons – with machines being tools that could be used by inventors.

          • South Africa approves world’s first patent with AI inventor [Ed: South Africa seems to be signalling that it has the worst of most lenient patent office]

            South African’s patent office, the Companies and Intellectual Property Commission, issued a patent that lists an artificial intelligence (AI) as the inventor on Wednesday. The patent is the first in the world to list AI as the inventor.

            The AI, known as DABUS (device for the autonomous bootstrapping of unified sentience), was developed by Stephen Thaler and used by Professor Ryan Abbott and his team at the University of Surrey. DABUS received the patent for a food container based on fractal geometry that improves grip and heat transfer.

          • Patent rights for satellites: computer simulations for satellite deployment & G1/19 [Ed: Patent litigation firms pushing illegal software patents under the guise of “simulation” again, relying on a tribunal rigged and intimidated by the EPO’s dictatorship]

            Recently, SpaceX Inc, the space exploration company founded by Elon Musk, has performed a couple of its dedicated rideshare missions. A rideshare mission is where a transporter rocket carries a payload of multiple satellites which need deploying into orbit. By splitting the rocket’s payload capacity among multiple customers, the cost per customer of launching their satellite is significantly reduced. This is particularly beneficial to smaller companies which may have previously found getting their satellite into orbit prohibitively expensive.

            On 24 January 2021, a new record was set. This first dedicated rideshare mission mounted 143 satellites onto one of its Falcon 9 rockets and deployed all of these satellites into orbit during an 18 minute period. This rideshare mission also deployed 10 Starlink satellites, which are the first to include communication lasers. These Starlink satellites will eventually enter a polar orbit to bring high speed internet to the polar regions. On 30 June 2021, the second rideshare mission deployed 85 satellites. As usual, this launch and deployment was streamed on SpaceX’s website.

      • Trademarks

        • Brands urged to ‘cast a wide net’ for cannabis TMs: WIPR TM Live [Ed: I can have monopoly on narcotics? Yes, if lawyers can profit from it!]
        • China IP Updates: July 2021 [Ed: Is China too muddying the water by mixing together totally different laws using a misnomer and propaganda term, "IP"? Or does it boil down to dishonest translations by litigation firms (opportunists looking for fights)?]

          The Opinions clarifies that the CNIPA will provide support to public security organs in terms of trademarks, patents, geographical indication information and legal status. It is mainly reflected in the fact that if the public security organ needs to verify the trademark registration certificate and priority certificate, trademark change, transfer, renewal certificate and other certification documents in the process of handling the case, it can do so through the CNIPA trademark registration certificate publicity system. At the same time, considering that there may be incomplete and lagging information in the publicity system, the public security organ may send a letter to the Trademark Office of the CNIPA to verify the information that cannot be verified from the publicity system or that the information is disputed.

        • Facts and figures: patent, trade mark, design and hearing data: 2020 [Ed: British government, likely in the pockets of the litigation and protectionism cartel, misuses triple propaganda terms like "intellectual property rights" (they are neither property nor rights, often not intellectual either)]

Was Microsoft Ever First in the Market?

Posted in Antitrust, Deception, Microsoft at 7:53 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Video download link | md5sum c63991b78c1d3046bd5b4d884d32c2a8

Summary: Confronting the false belief that Microsoft ever innovates anything of significance or is “first” in some market/s

Further to the previous video (and corresponding post) about last night's piece by Mitchel Lewis, we’ve decided to make a separate video along with an accompanying post about Microsoft’s history, which mostly involves copying other people’s things and then using illegal tactics (business crimes) to get an “edge”…

I’ve intentionally limited my personal thoughts (relegated to the above video). The text below is correspondence between Mr. Lewis and a Techrights associate, who had read drafts of the article before it was published yesterday.

“I thought Microsoft was never, ever first to market,” the associate noted. “They only ever copied, and slowly and poorly at that. What they can do is implant false memories, of sorts, so that the market and then individuals forget that there was ever something better. Take Kerberos+LDAP. It was the primary way to manage identities and authentication and occupied the niche that Microsoft aimed to destroy with Active Directory. Once they started pushing Active Directory, which was about 20 years ago, it couldn’t handle more than a half dozen accounts at a time yet all the microsofters, followed by the trade press, parroted the line that there was nothing on the market to manage identities and authentication. Same when they aimed to destroy e-mail with the Outlook+Exchange combination, they started parroting that there was no competing product. Well, given how many functions and capabilities were lacking from both, maybe they were partially right, but in spite of that, there were quite a few much higher quality, established MUC and MTAs. The list goes on.”

“The text below is correspondence between Mr. Lewis and a Techrights associate, who had read drafts of the article before it was published yesterday.”“When I say that Microsoft only dominates when they are first to market,” Mr. Lewis responded, “I mean that Microsoft only dominates markets when it enters them in its infancy and that they’re almost always dead in the water when a market is already dominated.”

“Ok,” our associate responded, “but which markets was Microsoft ever early to enter? As far as I recall, they’ve only ever followed and slowly at that. Steve Jobs used to rib them on both the slowness and the bad quality. I want to know if I’ve missed an area, but otherwise the statement implying that they have ever been first to market should be walked back.”

“I can’t recall a single area where they were first to market or, for that matter, even early to enter a market: DOS (CP/M, AppleDOS), GUI (GEM, DESQview, Lisa), Shell (Bash, Ksh), WordProcessing (WordStar, WordPerfect), SpreadSheets (Visicalc, 1-2-3, Quattro), Databases (dBaseII – dBaseIII, FoxBase), E-Mail Clients (Eudora, Pine), E-Mail Server (sendmail, postfix, exim, et al), Presentation Graphics (Harvard Graphics, Freelance Graphics), Desktop Publishing (PageMaker, QuarkXPress), OOP (java, python), Developer tools (Borland, Eclipse, Emacs), Web Browsers (Mosaic, Netscape), Web Server (Apache), Web Design (Dreamweaver, HotMetal, Emacs), Music Player (iPod), SmartPhone (iPhone, Android), Hosted Services (AWS, GoogleCloud, Nebula), Document Formats (ODF), etc. Maybe my memory is getting too rusty, that’s all I can think of. I would add that even when Microsoft did introduce a product into the market, that it was usually be at least a few more years until the product became usable enough to become recognizable.”

One has to be a little more “senior” to know or recall those products. Some of the above I’ve never heard of myself. For Microsoft it is a lot easier to charm or bamboozle the younger generation, with a swath of revisionism and press entryism. I’m still in my thirties, so some of the above brands I only know from young childhood.

“I know the story of Novell and IBM.”“There is a factual error,” our associate noted about the article. “Microsoft business strategy cannot be dependent on them being among the first movers in a market because they never are and never have been among the first. They are always slow in getting on their feet. Their business model has been nearly 100% dependent on illegally leveraging their OEM and Desktop monopolies as well as their monopoly on productivity suite file formats. tldr: it is a lie to assert that Microsoft is a first mover.”

As we do not edit/censor articles, in respect to their original authors, we’ve decided that instead a response to this article will follow. We ended up making two videos.

Mr. Lewis, who received this feedback prior to publication (finalisation), defended his position by stating: “Most of the markets that Microsoft entered into were in their infancy, wide open for the taking, and were anyone’s game. They didn’t have an AWS to compete with in the OS, Server, and Productivity markets like Azure does. To their credit, they did PCs better than IBM ever could. But taking out Novell and Lotus when the market was infinitesimally smaller than it is today was inevitable; they could barely put up a fight.”

I know the story of Novell and IBM. I do not agree with those statements and I’ve responded to them in the video (along the way).

“As they were doing this,” Mr. Lewis concluded, “they were relying on various tactics, from anticompetitive to creative, to dominate these young markets and maintain this domination to this day albeit losing ground everywhere now.”

“I saw nothing creative over the last four decades in their uniformly illegal and dishonest tactics,” our associate responded. “They gained a desktop monopoly from IBM which at the time was forced by the DOJ to choose between hardware and software. IBM chose hardware and thus handed, via Bill’s mother, Microsoft a monopoly on a silver platter. Microsoft then used Kildall’s work, via Paterson for chump change, and pawned it off as their own. BASIC was gained by dumpster diving and pawned off as if their own. Etc.”

“Even their gains in the productivity suite market were due entirely to the desktop monopoly rents which were used to underwrite the apparent price dumping. They undercut WordPerfect and Quattro by at least half. Blocking DR-DOS was also only enabled by their monopoly.

“The only somewhat new market Microsoft entered was the browser market, which though short in years already had a great many independent web browsers before Bill got around to ripping off Spyglass Mosaic. Now that, I must admit was creative because they agreed with Spyglass Mosaic on price based on a percentage of sales and then gave it away as part of an illegal bundling.

“Lying to improve and soften Microsoft image might assuage some consciences among some of those involved in perpetration of those kinds of activities, but it won’t alter what happened and would be revisionism at best to present those lies as truth. At this point what’s done is done and with all the original sources dead, dying, or going out of print it is of utmost importance to squelch revisionism.

“One area where Microsoft actually was creative was in the way it could keep convincing small companies to negotiate with them under NDA. Microsoft would talk them into meeting, raid them for their ideas and trade secrets, and then shamelessly whip up a half-assed copy of whatever product or service the small company had built their business around. Often the Microsoft imitation product or service was given away or provided at an inappropriately low price, the result was that the small company quickly went under and/or sold to Microsoft.

“They still do that though more sneakily and less blatantly as in the day back when they screwed companies like Sendo.

“Another area where Microsoft is actually creative is in the lies they are able to get the public to swallow via their whisper network of consultants, salespeople, and associated minions. The best example was them going against Novell’s flagship product Netware. Microsoft’s whisper campaign convinced managers that Novell was pulling the plug on its highly profitable, highly popular SME product Netware. Microsoft replacement file server and identity management software was more than a decade away from becoming even partially usable and appeared to be in the proof-of-concept stage. Yet it spread through SME server rooms like a digital hantavirus.”

Links 1/8/2021: 4MLinux 37.0, IBM Fluff, and USMCA Update

Posted in News Roundup at 6:13 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

  • GNU/Linux

    • Server

    • Audiocasts/Shows

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • [Old] Zip – How not to design a file format.

        I have a feeling this is like many file formats. They aren’t designed, rather the developer just makes it up as they go. If it gets popular other people want to read and/or write them. They either try to reverse engineer the format OR they ask for specs. Even if the developer writes specs they often forget all the assumptions their original program makes. Those are not written down and hence the spec is incomplete. Zip is such a format.

      • What’s In A Font? Website Typography Best Practices

        I love web design and website typography is a huge part of that. It turns out that I’m somewhat of a typography nerd, so I wanted to share some of what I’ve learned in this regard here.

      • How to Install MariaDB 10.6 on Rocky Linux 8 – LinuxCapable

        MariaDB is one of the most popular open-source databases next to its originator MySQL. The original creators of MySQL developed MariaDB in response to fears that MySQL will suddenly become a paid service due to Oracle acquiring it in 2010. With its history of doing similar tactics, the developers behind MariaDB have promised to keep it open source and free from such fears as what has happened to MySQL.

        MariaDB has become just as popular as MySQL with developers, with features such as advanced clustering with Galera Cluster 4, faster cache/indexes, storage engines, and features/extensions that you won’t find in MySQL.

      • How to Install Sysdig on Ubuntu 20.04 – LinuxCapable

        Sysdig is open source, system-level exploration: capture system state and activity from a running Linux-based system such as Ubuntu 20.04, then save, filter, and analyze that is particularly useful for system analysis, inspection, and debugging, amongst other uses. Sysdig is scriptable in Lua and includes a command-line interface and a powerful interactive UI using the command csysdig that runs in your terminal.

        In the following tutorial, you will learn how to install Sysdig on Ubuntu 20.04 and 21.04.

      • How to Install Oracle VirtualBox on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS

        As we know Oracle VirtualBox is a famous desktop virtualization tool which allows us to run multiple virtual machines or guest operating systems. It is used for test and development environment where Linux geeks create and delete virtual machines based on the requirements. VirtualBox is a cross-platform tool available for both Windows and Linux operating systems.

        VirtualBox gives us the option to create host-based networking for virtual machines. In this post, we will discuss how to install latest version of Oracle VirtualBox on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS (focal fossa) system. At the time of writing this post, VirtualBox 6.1.26 was available.

      • How To Install Wing Python IDE on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS – idroot

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Wing Python IDE on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS. For those of you who didn’t know, Wing Python IDE was designed from the ground up for Python, to bring you a more productive development experience. Full-featured Python IDE with the intelligent editor, a powerful debugger, remote development error checking, refactoring, and much more. The wing was designed from the ground up for interactive Python development.

        This article assumes you have at least basic knowledge of Linux, know how to use the shell, and most importantly, you host your site on your own VPS. The installation is quite simple and assumes you are running in the root account, if not you may need to add ‘sudo‘ to the commands to get root privileges. I will show you the step-by-step installation of the Wing Python IDE on Ubuntu 20.04 (Focal Fossa). You can follow the same instructions for Ubuntu 18.04, 16.04, and any other Debian-based distribution like Linux Mint.

    • Distributions

      • New Releases

        • Freespire 7.7 Released
        • 4MLinux 37.0 STABLE released.

          The status of the 4MLinux 37.0 series has been changed to STABLE. Edit your documents with LibreOffice and GNOME Office (AbiWord 3.0.5, GIMP 2.10.24, Gnumeric 1.12.50), share your files using DropBox 126.4.4618, surf the Internet with Firefox 90.02 and Chromium 90.0.4430.212, send emails via Thunderbird 78.12.0, enjoy your music collection with Audacious 4.1, watch your favorite videos with VLC 3.0.16 and mpv 0.33.0, play games powered by Mesa 21.0.1 and Wine 6.12. You can also setup the 4MLinux LAMP Server (Linux 5.10.47, Apache 2.4.48, MariaDB 10.6.3, PHP 5.6.40 and PHP 7.4.21). Perl 5.32.1, Python 2.7.18, and Python 3.9.1 are also available.

          As always, the new major release has some new features. FluidSynth (a software synthesizer) with VMPK (Virtual MIDI Piano Keyboard) have been added. Dmidecode (a tool to read hardware-related data from your SMBIOS) has also been included. HandBrake (a video transcoder) and qBittorrent (an advanced BitTorrent client) are now available as downloadable extensions. 4MLinux now uses its own servers for updating the ClamAV virus database. The Linux kernel patched to support the reiser4 file system has been added to the 4MLinux drivers collection.

      • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandriva/OpenMandriva Family

        • qmmp updated to 1.5.1

          Qmmp is a feature-rich audio player, written with help of the Qt library. The user interface is similar to winamp or xmms.

        • librewolf updated to 90.0.2

          LibreWolf is designed to minimize data collection and telemetry as much as possible. This is achieved through hundreds of privacy/security/performance settings and patches. Intrusive integrated addons including updater, crashreporter, and pocket are removed too. LibreWolf is NOT associated with Mozilla or its products.

        • caprine updated to 2.54.0

          Caprine is an unofficial and privacy-focused Facebook Messenger app with many useful features.

        • calibre updated to 5.24.0

          Calibre is meant to be a complete e-library solution. It includes library management, format conversion, news feeds to ebook conversion as well as e-book reader sync features.

      • Arch Family

        • First Arch Linux ISO Powered by Linux Kernel 5.13 Is Now Available for Download

          Arch Linux 2021.08.01 has been released today and it’s the first monthly ISO snapshot of the popular GNU/Linux distribution to ship with the latest and greatest Linux 5.13 kernel series, which is now used by default. Linux 5.13.6 is included in this snapshot, but the Linux 5.13.7 point release already hit the testing repos at the moment of writing and will soon land in the stable channel for you to update your new installations to the latest kernel.

          As you can imagine, Linux kernel 5.13 introduces better hardware support, which means that Arch Linux is now compatible with more systems and components. Highlights include FreeSync HDMI support for AMD GPUs, ACPI 6.4 support, support for Lenovo’s Thinkpad X1 Tablet Thin keyboard, Apple’s Magic Mouse 2, or Amazon’s Luna game controller, as well as new virtio drivers for some audio devices and Bluetooth controllers.

      • IBM/Red Hat/Fedora

        • Here are 5 insights you might have missed from Red Hat Summit 2021 [Ed: "TheCUBE is a paid media partner for Red Hat Summit." In other words, IBM pays this 'publishers' to become a puff pieces apparatus]

          It has been approximately two years since IBM finalized its acquisition of Red Hat Inc. for $34 billion, and the Red Hat Summit in April offered an opportunity to assess the state of the open-source world and the key projects brought about by the marriage of two key enterprise computing powers.

          The two-day virtual event was covered extensively by theCUBE, SiliconANGLE Media’s livestreaming studio, which conducted nearly 20 interviews with Red Hat and IBM executives, customers and partners as part of this year’s online gathering.

        • Linux to host open source solution to aid firefighter safety [Ed: Misuse of the brand “Linux”]
    • Devices/Embedded

    • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

      • Apache Cassandra 4.0 finally arrives

        Well, that took a while. Well over a year ago the Apache Software Foundation announced the beta of Cassandra 4.0. Developers were eager to get their hands on this, the most popular of the NoSQL databases. Alas, it took longer than many had hoped. Then at the 11th hour, a nasty bug was found, which further delayed Cassandra’s release for a few days. But, at long last Apache Cassandra 4.0 is here and ready to tear into your petabytes of data.

      • Zulip releases ‘Teach a course’ education product

        Zulip for Education is a new open source team chat product used at university departments around the world, including MIT & University of California San Diego

      • U.S. Secretary of Commerce to Headline Open Skills Network’s Inaugural Skills Summit | News | bakersfield.com

        This open source software toolkit will facilitate the creation and maintenance of open skills libraries for use across sectors including education, the workforce, government, and the military.  

      • SaaS/Back End/Databases

      • Programming/Development

        • What do developers want and need from secure coding training?

          Cybersecurity is increasingly becoming integrated into software development initiatives. As part of this, application security (AppSec) specialists often work closely with software development teams to improve security within the applications they create. However, there is still confusion about the role developers play in software security, and whether responsibility for it should rest solely on their shoulders.

  • Leftovers

    • I Am Parting With My Crypto Library

      The time has come for me to find a new home for my (paper) cryptography library. It’s about 150 linear feet of books, conference proceedings, journals, and monographs — mostly from the 1980s, 1990s, and 2000s.

    • Education

      • Technical blogs worth reading

        I’m dedicated to checking my favorite blogs every few days (and always looking for more), so I was surprised when a group of friends said they don’t know of a single blog worth reading!

        This list is so that I can easily share my favorite blogs to colleagues and students. These blogs cover programming, software engineering, startups, product design, usability, research, game development, and academia. They are in no particular order, but I provide a few categories for each and an example post that I recommend.

    • Health/Nutrition

    • Integrity/Availability

      • Canonicalization Attacks Against MACs and Signatures

        Canonicalization Attacks occur when a protocol that feeds data into a hash function used in a Message Authentication Code (MAC) or Digital Signature calculation fails to ensure some property that’s expected of the overall protocol.

        The textbook example of a canonicalization attack is the length-extension attack against hash functions such as MD5–which famously broke the security of Flickr’s API signatures.

        But there’s a more interesting attack to think about, which affects the design of security token/envelope formats (PASETO, DSSE, etc.) and comes up often when folks try to extend basic notions of authenticated encryption (AE) to include additional authenticated (but unencrypted) data (thus yielding an AEAD mode).

      • Proprietary

        • SolarWinds [Attack] Reached 27 U.S. Attorneys’ Offices, Justice Says

          The attack compromised Microsoft 365 accounts of at least 80% of the department’s employees working in offices located in the Eastern, Northern, Southern and Western Districts of New York. Also affected to a lesser degree were employees in U.S. Attorneys’ offices in 14 other states, including California, Florida, Maryland, Texas and Virginia, as well as the District of Columbia.

        • Safari isn’t protecting the web, it’s killing it

          There’s been a lot of discussion recently about how “Safari is the new IE” (1, 2, 3, 4, 5).

          I don’t want to rehash the basics of that, but I have seen some interesting rebuttals, most commonly: Safari is actually protecting the web, by resisting adding unnecessary and experimental features that create security/privacy/bloat problems.

          That is worth further discussion, because it’s widespread, and wrong.

          More specifically, Safari’s approach isn’t protecting the web from bloat & evil Google influence, because: [...]

        • Hasta la Vista Gmail

          I’ve been a Gmail user pretty much since day 1, when it was still an invite-only service in 2004.1 Not anymore. Over the past month I’ve migrated most of my email to Fastmail and I’m extremely happy with the result.

          Why bother? Well, I guess it won’t come to you as a shock that I’ve felt progressively more uncomfortable with how Google (and the like) are handling my personal data. I’ve also been getting quite frustrated with attempts to make email/my inbox “smarter”. I never needed a “priority inbox”, auto-categorization of email, etc. Simple is good. Just put the newest emails on the top and I’ll sort it out from there.

        • Google dodges regulation, hits advertisers with “regulatory” charges: What’s the Scam?

          We are not familiar with what draconian regulatory schemes exist for Google in Austria and Turkey, but here in Australia we know what it is – which is not much at all. And they paid no tax on their 2020 revenue of $5.2 billion.

        • Storing Encrypted Photos in Google’s Cloud

          Cloud photo services are widely used for persistent, convenient, and often free photo storage, which is especially useful for mobile devices. As users store more and more photos in the cloud, significant privacy concerns arise because even a single compromise of a user’s credentials give attackers unfettered access to all of the user’s photos. We have created Easy Secure Photos (ESP) to enable users to protect their photos on cloud photo services such as Google Photos. [...]

        • Security

          • Privacy/Surveillance

            • K-pop’s fandom platforms are changing what it means to be an idol

              While the DAUM fancafes for many idols are still up and running, there has been a shift away from them over the past two years, especially for English-language fandoms. In their place, several companies have created new social apps for their artists, entirely bypassing third-party platforms like Twitter or Facebook. Three main platforms now stand out: NCSoft’s Universe is used by a wide range of groups managed by companies outside of the Big Four of Korean pop music and includes features like a “private messaging” service, exclusive music, and mildly controversial AI-generated voice calls with idols. HYBE’s Weverse is home to mega-groups like BTS and TXT and structured more like the DAUM fancafes. Finally, there’s SM’s LYSN, which includes the truly innovative Bubble app that has found a way to give K-pop groups all of the benefits of Twitter DMs, without many of the problems.

            • Here’s how police can get your data — even if you aren’t suspected of a crime

              Many of the Capitol insurrectionists might be discovering this now, as cases against them are built with evidence taken from [Internet] services like Facebook and Google. While they left a trail of digital evidence for investigators (and [Internet] detectives) to follow, not all of that data was publicly available. If you read through cases of people charged with crimes relating to the events in Washington on January 6, you’ll find the FBI also obtained internal records from various social media platforms and mobile phone carriers.

              But you don’t have to be an alleged insurrectionist for law enforcement to get data about you from another company. In fact, you don’t have to be suspected of a crime at all. The police are increasingly using tactics like reverse search warrants to grab the data of many people in the hope of finding their suspect among them. You might get swept up in one just because you were in the wrong place at the wrong time or looked up the wrong search term. And you might never know that you got caught in the dragnet.

            • Pirate MEP: EU Attack On Cash And Virtual Cash Results In Financial Paternalism

              There was a great public outcry when the Commission asked the public for their opinion on limiting cash payments in 2017. More than 90% of responding citizens spoke out against such a step. Respondents considered paying anonymously in cash an “essential personal freedom” and considered that “restrictions on payments in cash are ineffective in achieving the potential objectives (fight against criminal activities, terrorism, tax evasion)”. According to an ECB survey up to 10% of citizens use cash for amounts exceeding 10.000 € (e.g. buying cars). According to calculations by shadow economy expert Friedrich Schneider of the University of Linz, banning large cash payments would have “only minimal lowering effects on crime”.

            • Social Media: A Psychic Cancer

              I’m not sure how to best handle this issue, this is a bigger multifaceted issue than individuals can really take on their own. It’s a societal problem. It’s bigger than just people or small groups of them, it’s something that affects us all.

            • Spyware revelations are a crucial moment for Indian democracy
            • Joint Open Letter: States Must Implement Moratorium on Surveillance Technology – PEN America

              We the undersigned civil society organizations and independent experts are alarmed at the media revelations that NSO Group’s spyware has been used to facilitate human rights violations around the world on a massive scale.

              These revelations are a result of the Pegasus Project and are based on the leak of 50,000 phone numbers of potential surveillance targets. The project is a collaboration of more than 80 journalists from 16 media organizations in 10 countries coordinated by Forbidden Stories, a Paris-based media non-profit, with the technical support of Amnesty International, who conducted forensic tests on mobile phones to identify traces of the Pegasus spyware.

    • Defence/Aggression

      • Opinion | Preventing an American Pinochet

        As the congressional investigation into the January 6 insurrection gets underway, we’re learning disturbing new details about Trump supporters’ violent attempt to overturn the 2020 election.

      • Opinion | US Policy Is Deeply Implicated in Haiti’s Crisis

        Exactly what happened in the lead-up to the early morning of July 7, when armed mercenaries invaded the home of Haitian President Jovenel Moïse, is still unclear. What is known is that Moïse was assassinated, and eighteen Colombian mercenaries (seven of whom received some level of training from the U.S. military) and three Haitian Americans are accused of conspiring to kill him. 

      • Cameroon Says Boko Haram Attacks Military, Seduces Civilians

        Officials in Cameroon say Boko Haram militants appear to be changing their tactics and attacking only military and government targets in an effort to try to attract more recruits.

      • Why Islamism became woke

        To this new alliance between Islamism and progressive rhetoric, there is no simple response. Dawa, by its very nature, is inherently more difficult to fight than jihad. But those who believe, as I do, in a free, open, pluralist society need to be aware of the nature and magnitude of this new challenge. After two decades of fighting Islamist terrorism, we have a new and more subtle foe to contend with. Wokeism has long been regarded as a dangerous phenomenon — but only now are we starting to see why.

      • Tigray: UN says 100,000 children could die from hunger

        “UNICEF estimates that over 100,000 children in Tigray could suffer from life-threatening severe acute malnutrition (SAM) in the next 12 months — a tenfold increase compared to the average annual caseload.”

      • Erdogan, the Diyanet, and its Field Office near DC

        This Islamist NATO member—accused of tacitly supporting ISIS and other Salafi–jihadists—has long held high expectations of becoming a leading global power, and to lead the Muslim world under a new caliphate. To pursue such theocratic goals, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan (who famously compared democracy to a train: “you get off once you’ve reached your destination”) has worked to consolidate power, develop an international network of extremist ideologues and teachings, fund terror, persecute his critics, religious, and ethnic minorities, undermine foreign powers, and systematically destroy the remaining vestiges of Turkey’s democratic policies and practices from its former secular system.

        One of Erdoğan’s main tools has been this government agency that too few Western public officials, intelligence agencies, and law enforcement departments know of: the Diyanet. The Diyanet is thus not just a gravy train for covetous officials; it is also the main vehicle for the ideological export of theocratic Turkey’s guiding Islamist ideas.

      • The invisible victims of jihadi violence

        Failing to grasp this, Westerners don’t understand the nature and extent of the threat to their own security. That’s because it doesn’t fit the liberal narrative—that Muslims are the victims of Western colonialist oppression, and that therefore their violence is a kind of justified resistance, at least in its aims if not its methods.

      • Taliban assassinations of Afghan pilots ‘worrisome,’ US government watchdog says

        At least seven Afghan pilots have been assassinated off base in recent months, two senior Afghan government officials told Reuters, part of what the Islamist Taliban says is a campaign to see US trained Afghan pilots “targeted and eliminated.”

      • The Taliban seek cooperation with China?

        As China expands its global presence, it will eventually come into contact with nations with very difficult political and economic situations, such as Afghanistan. However, China will not flee because of obstacles, because the majority of the world’s developed countries are Western countries with strong biases against China, and those wanting to have good relations with China are frequently developing countries with varied challenges. nation. As a result, China has no option.

    • Environment

      • Black Residents in Coastal Georgia Are Holding Polluters Accountable
      • Energy

        • Opinion | For First Time on Record, US Renewables Generated More Electricity Than Either Coal or Nuclear in 2020

          The Energy Information Administration, the primary authority in the federal government on energy numbers, concludes that renewables, primarily hydro, wind and solar, rose to become 21% of electricity generation in the U.S. in 2020.

        • Why California isn’t banning gaming PCs (yet)

          While we’re surprised Alienware had to take this step, the reasons why are actually not new. I had looked into this way back in 2018, after two PC companies told me the end was nigh in California due to the regulations that had been passed in 2016. I waded through hundreds of pages of California Energy Commission reports and meeting minutes. On the face of it, it did sound like California’s strict power regulations would end most desktop PC sales in California on July 1, 2019.

          The truth is, of course, far more nuanced. Power regulators were mostly looking for ways to rein in the power use of PCs in idle mode, as a way to manage energy use during the workday. Regulators were primarily targeting the typical compact PC or all-in-one you see sitting in banks, hospitals and businesses—not gaming PCs. In standard bureaucratic style, though, it’s neither easy nor clear-cut to know which PCs are being targeted, unless you can make sense of Intel’s Expandability Score Calculation chart below better than we can.

      • Wildlife/Nature

    • Finance

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • Trump’s Tax Returns Must Be Handed Over to Congress, DOJ Says
      • Opinion | Our Leaders Can Save Lives With the Stroke of a Pen

        The single action of a governor or president can reset people’s lives and send them on a journey of liberation and healing. This should be done more often in every state.

      • With Election Days Away, Bernie Sanders Headlines Get-Out-the-Vote Rally for Nina Turner

        Just days out from the closely watched August 3 Democratic primary contest in Ohio’s 11th congressional district, Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont headlined a get-out-the-vote rally in Cleveland on Saturday for progressive candidate Nina Turner, whose grassroots campaign is facing an establishment opponent backed by high-profile party leaders and corporate cash.

        In his keynote speech at the event, Sanders spotlighted Turner’s ambitious policy platform and argued that—if she prevails in the special election against Cuyahoga County Democratic Party Chair Shontel Brown—the Ohio progressive would play a significant role ushering much-needed legislation through the narrowly divided Congress.

    • Misinformation/Disinformation

      • She exposed how Facebook enabled global political manipulation. Now she’s telling her story.

        After nearly a year of avoiding personal questions, Zhang is now ready to tell her story. She wants the world to understand how she became so involved in trying to protect democracy worldwide and why she cared so deeply. She’s also tired of being in the closet as a transgender woman, a core aspect of her identity that informed her actions at Facebook and after she left.

        Her story reveals that it is really pure luck that we now know so much about how Facebook enables election interference globally. Zhang was not just the only person fighting this form of political manipulation; it wasn’t even her job. She had discovered the problem because of a unique confluence of skills and passion, and then taken it upon herself, driven by an extraordinary sense of moral responsibility.

        To regulators around the world considering how to rein in the company, this should be a wake-up call.

      • How dare China, the worlds’ number one propagandist, accuse the BBC of broadcasting “fake news”?

        China’s foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian, during a press conference on the 29th of July called the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) a “bad-mouthing broadcasting corporation” which has “attacked and vilified China, seriously deviating from journalistic standards” and deserves to be “unpopular with the Chinese public” as it produces “fake news”. This statement came just days after the youth division of the ruling Chinese Communist Party (CCP) published online death threats against foreign journalists covering the floods in central China’s Henan province, triggering a wave of physical, verbal and online harassment against them.

      • This ‘perfectly timed’ photo of a protester in a Polo Ralph Lauren jacket is actually photoshopped

        This photo, which has been circulating on Twitter and Facebook since July 10, looks perfectly timed: the stance of a police officer on horseback brandishing a baton is a mirror image of the logo of the brand Polo Ralph Lauren on the back of a protester’s jacket. But the image is actually a creation of the artist Marijn Achternaam, who edited the original photograph.

      • The strange case of WhatsApp and the child-kidnappers

        There were some 70 mob attacks across India between January 2017 and July 2018, according to IndiaSpend, a data-journalism website. More than 30 people were killed and nearly 100 injured. Most of the violence was in response to rumours about child kidnapping spread on social media. Nearly a third of the assaults were traced directly back to messages spread on WhatsApp.

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • Dangerous Ideas: A Brief History of Censorship in the West, from the Ancients to Fake News

        The author uses the 2005 case of the controversial Danish cartoons depicting the Prophet Muhammad which sparked global protests.

        Even Index on Censorship, refused to publish the Danish cartoons in 2009 alongside an article by the academic Jytte Klausen about the decision of her publisher, Yale, not to include the cartoons in her book on the subject.

        The presumption of tolerance underpins the right to freedom of expression. Berkowitz’s account of the shaping of the First Amendment of the US Constitution is a powerful reminder of how far we have strayed from its values. The rise of ‘cancel culture’ as a remedy for curbing offensive opinions has eroded the belief in ‘freedom for the thought that we hate’, as expressed by Justice Holmes, one of the most influential US Supreme Court judges. Perhaps unfortunately, the author does not go as far as to interrogate what is driving this shift in support for censorship.

      • Get Ready for the ‘No-Buy’ List

        When I helped create PayPal in 1999, it was in furtherance of a revolutionary idea. No longer would ordinary people be dependent on large financial institutions to start a business.

        Our democratized payment system caught fire and grew exponentially with millions of users who appreciated its ease and simplicity. Traditional banks were too slow and bureaucratic to adapt. Instead, the revolution we spawned two decades ago inspired new startups like Ally, Chime, Square, and Stripe, which have further expanded participation in the financial system.

        But now PayPal is turning its back on its original mission. It is now leading the charge to restrict participation by those it deems unworthy.

      • PayPal and ADL Team Up to Disrupt ‘The Financial Pipelines’ Supporting ‘Hate and Bigotry’

        In 2019, 25 donor networks worth more than $1 billion launched a “Hate Is Not Charitable” campaign, aiming to cut off funds from conservative “hate groups” the SPLC targeted. In 2020, the SPLC teamed up with the Hamas-linked Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) to pressure the philanthropic sector — which held more than $121 billion in donor contributions in 2018 — to blacklist conservative “hate groups.” In 2019, Democrats cited the SPLC in calling on the IRS to remove tax-exempt status from “hate groups.”

    • Freedom of Information/Freedom of the Press

      • Russia’s ‘Foreign Agent’ Law Targets Journalists, Activists, Even Ordinary Citizens

        Russia’s 2012 law on foreign agents originally singled out nongovernmental organizations receiving grants from abroad. The legislation has since been amended to target not only media organizations but also individual journalists, YouTube bloggers and practically anyone else who receives money from abroad and voices a political opinion.

        Upon receiving the designation, they are required to label anything they publish — even social media posts — as the work of a foreign agent, and submit quarterly financial reports to the Justice Ministry. Bookkeeping mistakes and failure to comply can result in fines and even imprisonment.

      • UK: Blogger Craig Murray jailed for eight months over “jigsaw identification”

        Murray is expected to surrender himself to police on 30 July to begin his eight-month prison sentence for contempt of court after the UK Supreme Court refused the application to review his case. The charges stem from Murray’s coverage from the public gallery of Salmond’s trial on sexual assault charges — of which Salmond was aquitted — at the Edinburgh High Court in March 2020. Judge Lady Dorrian found that Murray had breached her strict order to protect the identities of witnesses, concluding that his blog posts would allow for “jigsaw identification” – apparently unprecedented grounds for imprisonment in the UK – for which he was sentenced in May 2021 to eight months in prison.

      • Photojournalist Danish Siddiqui was executed by Taliban: Report

        Pulitzer Prize-winning Indian photojournalist Danish Siddiqui was not simply killed in a crossfire in Afghanistan, nor was he simply collateral damage, but was “brutally murdered” by the Taliban after verifying his identity, according to a report published in a US-based magazine on Thursday.

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • Glen Ford’s Journalism Fought for Black Liberation and Against Imperialism
      • Keeping Freedom Alive

        I want to make one or two points for you to ponder while I am in jail. This is the last post until about Christmas; we are not legally able to post anything while I am imprisoned. But the Justice for Craig Murray Campaign website is now up and running and will start to have more content shortly. Fora and comments here are planned to stay open.

      • The Making of Two Political Prisoners: Daniel Hale and Craig Murray
      • Christians in Iraqi Kurdistan forced to abandon homes due to Turkish bombardment

        The operation, however, has indiscriminately targeted Christian communities and other civilian communities.

        This includes Assyrian Christians indigenous to the region, as well as those from Mosul and the Plains of Nineveh (the historic centre of Iraqi Christianity) who fled to Kurdistan to escape Islamic State (ISIS, ISIL, Daesh) and subsequent violent persecution.

      • Videos show Taliban has no interest in peace in Afghanistan

        While both the US and the UN has warned the Taliban of international isolation and travel sanctions if the Sunni group unilaterally tries to seize power in Kabul, the Islamist group, with its leadership safely ensconced in neighbouring Pakistan is in no mood to change from its 1996 version. The Deobandi group’s larger objective is to impose Sharia on Afghanistan by converting it into an emirate and expand the Sunni Pashtun influence all over the country at the cost of the minorities and women rights.

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

      • The Tanzania ISP Association (TISPA) issues a statement & reminds everyone about the critical services of AFRINIC

        The Supreme Court of Mauritius has ordered that the bank accounts of AFRINIC, the Regional Internet Registry for Africa and Indian Ocean region, be temporarily frozen, following a dispute between AFRINIC and one of its Resource Member, Cloud Innovation Ltd.

        The ramifications of AFRINIC’s frozen bank accounts are severe. The Tanzania ISP Association (TISPA) reminded everyone of the severity of these actions via their statement that they posted today. In the statement, TISPA explained the role of AFRINIC in running critical services for the global Internet and how these services could be impacted with the recent development in the legal dispute. I quote: [...]

    • Monopolies

      • Big tech tries to derail EU AI policy with ‘warnings’ from US think tank

        EU policymakers recently proposed a sweeping set of regulations called the Artificial Intelligence Act (AIA). If made law, the AIA would offer European citizens the strictest, most comprehensive protections against predatory AI systems on the planet.


        This report uses fuzzy, cherry-picked math to come up with the assertion that passing the AIA will cost Europe tens of billions of dollars. It warns against “brain drain,” – that’s when all the smartest people leave their homeland so they can get rich abroad – and claims European innovation will die an expensive, painful death as US and Chinese corporations leave the EU behind.

        To that, I say: Lol. Using the US or China as a bar for regulation is like using a UFC fight as an example of diplomatic negotiations.

        The current state of AI policy in the US can only be described as absolutely ridiculous. There’s next to no regulation, the police are out of control, companies such as Facebook conduct psyops on the general public without reprisal, and Tesla is literally testing autonomous vehicle software in the general public with absolutely no oversight.

        People regularly die in vehicle accidents because AI software lets them down, the police wrongfully arrest and shoot people because AI misidentifies them, and companies such as PredPol, Clearview AI, and Palantir are being paid billions in taxpayer dollars to strip away citizens’ Constitutional rights.

      • Patents

        • Mexicans judge the USMCA trade deal’s first year a success

          Hello and welcome from Mexico City, where we’re looking at how the all-important USMCA trade deal with the U.S. and Canada is faring, just over a year after it replaced NAFTA.

          Mexican Economy Secretary Tatiana Clouthier visited Washington last week to discuss progress with top U.S. officials and business leaders and to iron out differences on implementation.

      • Copyrights

        • DISH & Sling Sue Pirate Sites For Circumventing Sports Stream DRM

          DISH Network and Sling TV have filed a copyright infringement lawsuit against four unlicensed sports streaming sites including the popular SportsBay.org. According to the companies, the platforms offer illegal access to sports programming by bypassing Sling’s technical protection measures in violation of the anti-circumvention provisions of the DMCA.

        • Tokyo Olympics Opening Ceremony is The First Mainstream 8K Rip on Pirate Sites

          The opening ceremony of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics was one of the most anticipated events of this year. In Japan, the lucky few could watch it in an ultra-high 8K resolution with 22.2 surround sound. This subsequently resulted in the first pirated 8K rip appearing on pirate sites, which is a major milestone by itself.

Microsoft Knows That When Shareholders Realise Azure Has Failed the Whole Boat Will Sink

Posted in Microsoft, Servers at 3:55 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Video download link | md5sum ef4d5d7a27785805a35e89a5fb0bde9a

Summary: The paranoia at Microsoft is well justified; they’ve been lying to shareholders to inflate share prices and they don’t really deliver the goods, just false hopes and unfulfilled promises

THE VIDEO above has been planned for nearly a week, albeit it wasn’t scripted or anything, nor was the bird (wallpaper of the day). Following last night's piece by Mitchel Lewis, which was work in progress for a while, we can debate a number of points raised in his article. Internal discussions about it showed disagreement about the history of Microsoft, so we thought we’d make a followup video with some more thoughts, including further input from Microsoft watchers or longtime observers.

“Azure layoffs are being hidden from them and there’s financial fraud taking place. Not for the first time in Microsoft’s history…”The main point of contention is the claim that sometimes Microsoft is “first” at things. As noted a number of days ago, it’s almost never the case. Throughout the company’s entire history it was mostly ‘stealing’ other people’s work, undermining the original. then rewriting history (to make Microsoft seem like a pioneer). Many people still think that Windows was the first operating systems with windows in it, that Microsoft Office is the ‘original’ office suite (Microsoft did not even develop it; it just bought it piece-wise), and that Microsoft had a role in the rise of the Internet or the World Wide Web. The very opposite is true!

For quite some time now (a number of years) Mr. Lewis, who was inside Microsoft, has pointed out that Microsoft is in effect defrauding shareholders. He even filed evidence and lodged a formal complaint with the SEC. Azure layoffs are being hidden from them and there’s financial fraud taking place. Not for the first time in Microsoft’s history…

How about those scattered press reports about Azure-linked datacentres being shut down?

I recently wrote that Linux is a Lot More Dominant Than You Were Led to Believe (or “Almost 50% of Web Traffic is Linux at the Client Side, Even Higher on the Server Side”) along with a chart and meme:

GNU/Linux market share
We’re not as small as they want us to think

Kong Godzilla Doge: Apple, Microsoft, GNU/Linux
Combined market share continues to grow

As a Techrights associate pointed out at the time, “below some level of market share (85% or so) Microsoft will no longer be able to maintain monopoly rents. I expect that the threshold has been crossed and that’s why they started to “give” away the new versions. It’s probably also why so many budget items have been moved under the heading “Azure” so as to provide the illusion of growth somewhere. [...] nymshifting is a common tactic among many companies. Microsoft uses it a lot [...] since NT5 bombed in the reviews. Also, technically, they should not be able to trademark common dictionary words [reference to "Surface"]. But as far as the budgets go, Microsoft did a big reshuffle after it was noted in their SEC filings that their biggest line item was advertising. The reshuffle did not change anything except the names. The “research” is advertising, etc. By putting more and more under the “Azure” heading, Microsoft can fake growth, especially when combined with the efforts of its minion stenographers out in what’s left of the trade press.” (Example puff piece from The New York Times, parroting what Microsoft claims; or “cooking the books” as the associate put it)

Regarding Vista 11, said this associate: “I’m suspecting that Vista 11 has no other purpose than to push TPM hardware and eliminate all Free, general-purpose motherboards. Once the TPM modules are ubiquitous they can start the software side…”

“How about those scattered press reports about Azure-linked datacentres being shut down?”Taking note of a site called “The No More Ransom Project”, the associate dubbed it “snakeoil”, noting that it was distracting from the fact ransomware was mostly a Microsoft/Windows issue, as Mr. Lewis pointed out several times since May. This site “shows only snakeoil and is missing Ubuntu, Devuan, FreeBSD, and the real deal,” the associate said.

That’s the desktop side for the most part, even though servers too get targeted. In the realm of servers Microsoft lost the battle a very long time ago (see “Is Azure Stagnating?” in case they’ve fooled some people into thinking they’re a big server host; they’re not! Remember there are Azure layoffs. Microsoft was super-paranoid about any of us mentioning these layoffs because that harms morale and HR! They even came to our IRC channels to discourage us talking about that!).

In another, albeit related and separate post, we’ll examine the claim that Microsoft was ever first to do something or actually innovate (as the buzzword goes). Stay tuned as we’ve not recorded or composed that yet. It oughtn’t take long.

[Meme] Nobody and Nothing Harms Europe’s Reputation Like the EPO Does

Posted in Europe, Patents at 2:09 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz


Summary: Europe’s second-largest institution, the EPO, has caused severe harm/damage to Europe’s economy and reputation; its attacks on the courts and on justice itself (even on constitutions in the case of UPC — another attempt to override the law and introduce European software patents) won’t be easily forgotten; SUEPO has meanwhile (on Saturday, link at the bottom in German) reminded people that Benoît Battistelli and António Campinos have driven away the EPO’s most valuable workers or moral compass

IRC Proceedings: Saturday, July 31, 2021

Posted in IRC Logs at 2:08 am by Needs Sunlight

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