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Links 8/10/2014: A Lot of Linux+AMD News, New ROSA Desktop Is Out

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  • Desktop

  • Server

    • IBM Power Systems Includes Unix and Linux [VIDEO]
      IBM is aiming to re-invent itself in a new hardware era where it no longer sells x86 based servers. IBM sold off its x86 server business to Lenovo in a $2.3 billion deal that officially closed on October 1.

      Doug Balog is the General Manager of Power Systems within IBM's System and Technology Group and it's his job to advance the Power server market position in the new non-x86 era at IBM.

      As contrast to the x86 business, which was largely about Linux, IBM's Power business includes two other operating systems. IBM Power runs and supports both the AIX Unix as well as the IBM i operating system that was originally known as AS/400.

    • StorPool – A Toolkit for Cloud Application Providers
      It might be tempting to write off StorPool. They are, after all, not really ready for the enterprise, at least in terms of compatibility and interface. But for online application and cloud providers, StorPool sounds exactly like what they want from a storage solution. These organizations are often Linux only, don’t want to deal with a graphical interface, and want the flexibility to scale the way they need to scale at any moment in time.

    • How open source technology is being deployed in science
      Given the transparent and collaborative nature of open source, it is no wonder that the technology is widely used all around the world. Countless organizations and industries have benefited immensely from open source software — with science and engineering among the sectors driving the charge.

      In an industry that heavily relies on technology and innovation, the deployment of open source initiatives in the scientific field should come as no surprise. In fact, CERN, one of the most revered names in the world of science, extensively uses open source software — here's why.

    • What's CoreOS? An existential threat to Linux vendors
      While sometimes dismissed as the newest entrant in the “just enough operating system” pageant, CoreOS threatens to displace incumbent Linux distributions with a minimalist approach that seeks to emulate how Google and other Web companies manage distributed systems. CoreOS uses Docker to handle the addition and management of applications and services on a system.

      Indeed, by changing the very definition of the Linux distribution, CoreOS is an “existential threat” to Red Hat, Canonical, and Suse, according to some suggestions. The question for Red Hat in particular will be whether it can embrace this new way of delivering Linux while keeping its revenue model alive.

  • Kernel Space

    • No interest in Poettering's problems, says Torvalds

      Linux creator Linus Torvalds has indicated that he has no interest in the problems faced by chief systemd developer Lennart Poettering that led to the latter blaming Torvalds for the negative feedback he (Poettering) has faced.

    • Linux Foundation Expands International Membership
      Altera, Chelsio Communications, DataCentred, Imagination Technologies, and Travelping Are Latest Companies to Support Linux


      About The Linux Foundation The Linux Foundation is a nonprofit consortium dedicated to fostering the growth of Linux and collaborative software development. Founded in 2000, the organization sponsors the work of Linux creator Linus Torvalds and promotes, protects and advances the Linux operating system and collaborative software development by marshaling the resources of its members and the open source community. The Linux Foundation provides a neutral forum for collaboration and education by hosting Collaborative Projects, Linux conferences, including LinuxCon, and generating original research and content that advances the understanding of Linux and collaborative software development. More information can be found at

    • F2FS File-System Gets Even Better With Linux 3.18
      The Flash-Friendly File-System (F2FS) has been running well in our latest SSD benchmarks but with the forthcoming Linux 3.18 kernel it's going to be in even better shape.

    • Kernel 3.17 and kdbus – the kernel column
      Linus Torvalds announced the first release candidate 3.17 kernel (RC1) just ahead of this year’s Kernel Summit. Noting that he would be travelling (and thus not able to keep up with a massive influx of patches), he had closed the “merge window” (the period of time during which disruptive churn is allowed in any kernel development cycle) for 3.17 one day early. He also noted that, typically of northern hemisphere summers, this merge window had been “slightly smaller than the last few ones”. New features pulled into 3.17-rc1 were spread all over the kernel. They include the getrandom() system call, and support for the “memfd” and “file sealing” features needed for kdbus.

    • Meet Linux kernel 3.17's best new features: Xbox One controller support, laptop 'free fall' protection, and more

      New versions of the Linux kernel will eventually make their way into all sorts of other devices, too. A new Linux kernel means improvements for Chromebooks, Android devices, network routers, and any number of other embedded devices.

    • Linux 3.18 To Add Support For Firmware Core Dumps To User-Space
      Added to the driver core interface is a new device coredump class. This new generic kernel interface can be used for dumping firmware "core dumps" to user-space over sysfs. This is primarily intended for wireless and graphics drivers (among other potential drivers of hardware that deal a lot with firmware blobs) to implement so they can dump their hardware firmware state to assist in debugging complicated issues where it could be within the firmware code.

    • Current Status: Adoption of ZFS as Backend File System for Lustre
      In this video from the LAD’14 Conference in Reims, Gabriele Paciucci from Intel presents: Current Status of the Adoption of ZFS as Backend File System for Lustre.

    • Graphics Stack (Mostly AMD)

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments/WMs

    • Time to Replace XFCE?
      According to my sources, the last stable release of XFCE was about two years ago. By anyone's time line, that is a long time between stable releases. Bundle this issue with its apparent inability to play nicely with GTK3 friendly items and instead sticking to its older GTK roots. And others users have pointed out that the perceived GTK3 issues are largely with various desktop themes and the "fault" is to be directed at the GNOME project. Long story short, it's a debate showing few signs of being resolved anytime soon.

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

    • GNOME Desktop/GTK

  • Distributions

    • BEST DISTRO 2014
      Is your current Linux distribution really the best in town, or are you missing something even better?

    • ROSA Desktop Fresh R4 Is a Different and Fun KDE Experience
      ROSA Desktop Fresh R4 is the fourth in the series and uses one of the latest KDE versions. It's a distribution that aims to please a lot of users, even the ones who come from a Windows ecosystem.

      The previous version of this distribution was released back in April, so the developers had a lot of time to improve upon the operating system. That doesn't mean that ROSA changed too much. From a design point of view it's still pretty much the same, but many of the included packages have been updated.

    • New Releases

      • Alpine 3.0.5 released

        The Alpine Linux project is pleased to announce the immediate availability of version 3.0.5 of its Alpine Linux operating system.

        This is a bugfix release of the v3.0 musl based branch. This release is based on the 3.14.20 kernel which has some critical security fixes.

      • SparkyLinux 3.5.1 E19 is out
        SparkyLinux 3.5.1 “Annagerman” Enlightenment 19 is ready to go.

        Not so long ago, just three years I started my adventure with Enlightenment and Ubuntu. At the beginning the name of the system was ue17r (Ubuntu E17 Remix) and it was far away from the current version of SparkyLinux. ue17r was a kind of experiment and I was trying to prove (myself) that a man such me, non-programmer, is able to do something what theoretically shouldn’t does.

    • Red Hat Family

      • The Source of Vulnerabilities, How Red Hat finds out about vulnerabilities.
        Red Hat Product Security track lots of data about every vulnerability affecting every Red Hat product. We make all this data available on our Measurement page and from time to time write various blog posts and reports about interesting metrics or trends.

      • Apprenda extends PaaS with JBoss support, takes aim at Red Hat
        Private Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) vendor Apprenda Inc. has just added support for the popular JBoss and Apache Tomcat web servers, a move which translates to deeper support for more Java applications.

      • Fedora

        • Simply view system logs in Fedora 21 Workstation
          Fedora 21 Workstation (which is currently in alpha), contains a neat new application for quickly viewing and searching the logs of your system. It places all the system logs in a simple to use interface without having to dig through the filesystem or use a command line tool. This new application, simply called Logs should be installed by default on your Fedora 21 install and can be found in the Activities overview by simply searching for “Logs”.

        • GNOME on Wayland in Fedora 21
          Fedora 21 will come with GNOME 3.14, which already runs reasonably well on Wayland. Want to find out? It’s super easy to try it out! Let’s take a look at how to run GNOME on Wayland in Fedora 21, what already works, and what is yet to be finished.

        • The Limitations Of Wayland On Fedora 21
          Following last month's release of Fedora 21 Alpha I played around with the GNOME Wayland session and shared my thoughts and ran some XWayland benchmarks. The Fedora Project Magazine has also now put the Fedora 21 gnome-session-wayland-session through its paces and delivered a brief write-up. In their write-up they cover a partial list of applications known to break under Wayland some shortcomings. They also do a brief overview of the Wayland architecture and other facts, if you've been living under a rock the past few years, or just not reading enough Phoronix.

    • Debian Family

      • Derivatives

        • Canonical/Ubuntu

          • UbuTricks 14.10.08 Released
            UbuTricks 14.10.08 has been released. This version arrives with 10 new added programs (two games and eight apps), a new version numbering system which follows the scheme, and several other bug fixes and improvements.

          • Canonical Offers OpenStack and Ubuntu Cloud Training in Paris
            Canonical, the company behind Ubuntu Linux, has added a new offering to its training and education initiatives. This fall, the company is introducing a five-day OpenStack cloud computing training program, which it no doubt hopes will help generate expertise and familiarity with Ubuntu-friendly OpenStack distributions.

          • Meizu MX4 Pro caught in the wild running Ubuntu
            We can’t wait for the day to see the very first Ubuntu-powered smartphone hitting the market. Canonical — which makes the popular Linux distribution — has been experimenting with few different Nexus devices but none of these were ready for prime time.

  • Devices/Embedded

    • AllSeen to Shine a Light on Internet of Things
      The IoT consortium has formed a working group that will develop an open standard for smart lighting. The AllSeen Alliance, one of several industry consortiums developing open standards for the Internet of things, is turning its attention to lights in homes and businesses.

    • Pocket-sized mobile touchscreen web server runs Tizen
      A mobile personal web server called “The Egg” runs Tizen on an Intel Atom and features a 12-hour battery, a 2.4-inch touchscreen, and up to 256GB of storage.

    • Linux based touch-panel DAQ system includes GUI software
      Lascar launched a Linux-based DAQ system with a 4.3-inch capacitive touchscreen, an ARM9-based Freescale i.MX283 SoC, and a free GUI program.

    • Phones

      • Ballnux

        • openSUSE 13.2 RC1 is now out, hands on
          openSUSE 13.2 RC1 is baked and ready to serve!. This previous Beta release was a blast with almost 10.000 downloads. The community responded to the call and we had lot of eyes looking for bugs in openSUSE 13.2 Beta1. Many of them have been already squashed and openSUSE 13.2 Release Candidate 1 is here to prove it.

        • openSUSE 13.2 RC1 Is Out & Still Riding On Btrfs

        • openSUSE 13.2 first release candidate is out for testing
          It’s that time of the year when Linux users get to upgrade their systems – for free of cost, of course. All major distributions are slated for upgrade in the coming weeks including openSUSE (check out our dedicated openSUSE sub-magazine), Ubuntu and Fedora.

        • Samsung Gear S SmartWatch goes on Pre-order with confirmed price in the UK
          We have all been waiting for the Tizen Samsung Gear S to be launched and it looks like unlocked-mobiles will be the first UK online retailer to begin pre-orders with a confirmed price. They are expecting to have Stock on the 24th October, and will have the Gear S retailing for €£334.98 inc VAT.

      • Android

        • Nearly half of all Android devices are still vulnerable to two serious browser exploits
          Around 45 percent of Android devices have a browser that is vulnerable to two serious security issues, but some countries have a considerably larger percentage of affected users than others, according to data from mobile security firm Lookout.

          The two security issues were discovered over the past month by a security researcher named Rafay Baloch and were described as a privacy disaster by other researchers. They allow an attacker to bypass a core security boundary, called the same-origin policy (SOP), that exists in all browsers.

        • Hands-on with iRobot's Android-based robot controller: pictures
          iRobot on Thursday unveiled a new controller for its unmanned bomb disposal and discovery robots, an app that runs on every Android tablet.

Free Software/Open Source

  • Behind the scenes with CTO Michael DeHaan of Ansible
    He gives an idea of what the Ansible open source community is all about, including the rewards and challenges of working with users who also happen to be talented developers. He answers this and more, like what he'd work on if he could just add one more hour to the day.

  • Enterprise Adoption of Open Source Practices is On the Rise
    GitHub last month reported that the number of government employees using the code sharing platform had tripled in the past year, to reach more than 10,000 users from 500 organizations. The accompanying graph (re-published here with permission) shows a steep adoption curve that perfectly illustrates a larger trend toward government use of open source practices and workflows over the past five years.

  • What's Driving Open Source 2.0?
    It is not necessarily a requirement to have clouds built on an open source component, but there is no denying the prevalence and significance of open source staples such as Linux, MySQL, PostgreSQL or Apache Web Server in cloud environments. Open source software can help smooth the transition to DevOps if people are familiar with its tenets, such as collaboration, communication and transparency.

  • Keys to turn your open source project into a business
    Broadly speaking, there are two types of open source software. The free software, which has a reciprocity requirement in it. Open source software which doesn't.

    We can have debates about the merits of those two groups for the whole evening. I think both of them are needed and it depends on the usage and the purpose of your project.

  • Advice for front-end developers from Adrian Pomilio of Teradata
    Prior to the All Things Open conference in Raleigh this year, I asked Adrian Pomilio, UI developer at Teradata, a few questions about the session he'll deliver, his favorite open source tools, and recent trends in UI/UX technology relevant to open source world.

  • 10 Steps To Overcome Your Fear Of Using Open Source Software
    If you’re going to rely on some OSS, get in touch with the developers of those projects. Most OSS developers are quite community-oriented and usually helpful. In case your senior executives, regulatory, or QA folks have questions, you’ll be able to answer them easily if you’re in touch with the original developers. Also, if you need changes, some developers will likely be available for hire for making changes or helping with validation.

  • Events

  • Web Browsers

    • COWL, a New Web Privacy Tool, to Arrive for Chrome and Firefox
      A group of researchers is making news for building a new web privacy system for the Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox browsers that more efficiently handles JavaScript code among other tasks. In a paper introduced this week in conjunction with the Proceedings of the 11th USENIX Symposium on Operating Systems Design and Implementation, the researchers reported that 59 per cent of the biggest one million websites, and 77 per cent of the top 10,000 websites, incorporate jQuery, a tool that has been preyed on by hackers.

    • Chrome

    • Mozilla

      • Look what I did to fix Mozilla
        When you have a hammer, every problem looks like a nail. In my case, I have a 3D printer, and every problem is an opportunity to stare at the hypnotic movements of the extruder.

      • Is This How Mozilla Could Change the World?
        As my post last week indicated, I'm increasingly sceptical of Mozilla's role as the key defender of the open Web, largely because of its decision to embrace DRM. Even as a purveyor of fine Web browsers, things don't look so rosy. Two years ago, its global market share was fairly stable around 20%; a year ago, that slipped to around 19%; today, it's slumped to 14%. Meanwhile, Google's Chrome has overtaken Firefox as the number two browser, and holds around 21% of the market. Obviously, these figures are to be taken with a serious grain of salt, but I think the trend is real. So, given these developments, the obvious question that needs to be answered is: where exactly does Mozilla's future lie?

  • SaaS/Big Data

    • A Big Community Mobilizes Around NFV and OpenStack
      As September ended, the Linux Foundation announced the Open Platform for NFV (OPNFV) Project, a group comprised primarily of telecom operators working across open source projects and vendors to implement Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) within their organizations. News has also steadily arrived from Red Hat about its work to drive Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) and telecommunications technology into OpenStack.

    • OpenStack Juno Races to Completion as RC2s are Released
      The open-source OpenStack cloud platform is *almost* at its next major release, known as Juno — but first there all the release candidates.

    • OpenStack Interoperability Testing, Certification Gain Significance
      Although it is only four years old, the OpenStack cloud computing project is already having a profound impact on the plumbing and architecture of many data centers. Yesterday, I reported on how Network functions virtualization (NFV) is becoming synonymous with OpenStack, and how NFV and OpenStack could effectively rip out the proprietary infrastructure found in network deployments at many organizations.

  • Databases

    • Why I switched from Postgres to MongoDB, then to Neo4j
      When you’re about to start a project and are trying to make a decision on the what applications to use, one way to proceed is to find out what other people have to say about the available options, especially from others with first-hand experience with those available options.

    • Altiscale Releases SQL-on-Hadoop Cloud Storage Service
      What does it take to prepare SQL database storage for the Big Data age? Altiscale believes the answer is SQL-on-Hadoop as a service delivered through the cloud, which it has introduced through a new solution that it says is the first to make Hadoop File System (HDFS) data accessible through SQL interfaces.

  • CMS

  • Business

    • Semi-Open Source

      • Froont builds open-source community around responsive prototyping tool
        After browsing through all the flashing lights and shiny colors in Dribbble, casual admirers might come to the conclusion that web design is a unique bespoke process. But looking closer you can see some motifs with two columns here, or a grid layout there. When it comes down to layouts, it makes sense to at least have a solid foundation as a starting point rather than coding all the layout and responsiveness yourself.

  • Funding

    • ‘Hello World’ Indiegogo Fundraiser Reaches Goal
      Now that the needed money has been raised, the brothers Nielsen can get to work evolving the quality of their product. As Jared said back in September, “Our production value continues to improve with each video and tutorial we create. ‘Superusers: The Legendary GNU/LINUX Show’ is leagues ahead of our first episode, ‘What is a Robot?’ The ten computer science videos proposed in our Indiegogo campaign will only be better. We will focus on improving our script writing, fine-tuning the balance of education and entertainment, incorporating more animations, and refining our audio/visual production techniques.”

  • Openness/Sharing

  • Programming

  • Standards/Consortia

    • Former Valve/VOGL Dev: OpenGL Next Could Take 3+ Years
      Rich Geldreich, one of the original Valve Linux team members who started work on their VOGL OpenGL debugger, thinks it will take three years or more before the next-generation OpenGL materializes for users.

      Geldreich sadly left Valve earlier this year without disclosing his reasons at the time. It turns out he's now relocating back to Dallas, Texas and will be working for a start-up. The former Valve and former Microsoft developer has written his first blog post in a while and made a few interesting remarks:


  • Science

  • Security

  • Defence/Police/Secrecy/Aggression

    • Imperial spins and our media
      Regular US drone strikes are back, killing people on Pakistani territory. The mother of all terrorists says it is targeting the terrorists but by now we should be wise enough to know that she’s up to something else. At a time when the Pak Armed Forces are successfully eliminating terrorists from the very area being droned, what axe is the meddlesome superpower trying to grind? Is it leveling the ground for introducing its new and deadlier ISIS offspring into Pakistan via Afghanistan?

    • A Thirty-Year War—If Americans Will Have It
      Leon Panetta, former director of the CIA and secretary of defense, says that defeating our enemies in the Middle East and North Africa “is going to take a long time.” How long? “I think we’re looking at kind of a thirty-year war,” Panetta predicts.

      Whether the United States will be involved in this war for thirty years is an open question. But the notion that such a lengthy war is necessary is nonsense.

    • US drone strikes kill 23 in North Waziristan
      At least 23 people were killed and several others injured in three US drone strikes during last 36 hours in North Waziristan's tribal region. In the latest attack, six people were killed and 11 injured when a US drone fired two missiles on militant Commander Mustaqeem's centre in Kandghar area of Shawal on Wednesday.

    • John Oliver, Ben Affleck and the Game of Drones
      In President Obama's six years in office, he's ordered about eight times as many drone strikes as his predecessor did in eight years in office. Apparently, not everyone thinks that's a good thing.

    • Latest U.S. Drone Strike Kills 4 in Pakistan

      A U.S. drone strike in Pakistan has reportedly killed at least four people. The victims were described as suspected militants in North Waziristan. At least 25 people have died this week in a series of U.S. strikes in tribal areas along Pakistan’s border with Afghanistan.

    • Fifth consecutive US drone attack in last five days
      At least four people were killed and two others injured in a US drone attack in the North Waziristan tribal region, security sources said.

      Sources said that the drone fired missiles targeting a vehicle in the Loman area of Dattakhel Tehsil. Today's strike is the fifth consecutive drone attack in the last five days, as the US-led drone campaign targets suspected militants and their hideouts in restive North and South Waziristan.

    • Age of empire
      There is certainly at least one way America is exceptional

      The U.S. Empire today is the largest in world history with 1,100 military bases and outposts spreading over the globe, dwarfing the Alexander, Roman, Ottoman, Hapsburg, Spanish and British empires of yesteryear.

      President Obama has urged Americans to shift attention to Asia but surreptitiously has increased militarism in Africa from A to Z (Algeria to Zambia). Africa swarms with U.S. military.

    • Plane and simple
      The Obama administration has overseen an eightfold increase in the number of attacks flown by unmanned aerial vehicles or “drones.” These small, pilotless aircraft have become popular with the U.S. Air Force for their ability to take on dangerous missions deep inside hostile territory while keeping American servicemen out of harm’s way. Yet the American drone program has also come under harsh scrutiny by human rights groups.


      I’m all for productive discussion of the covert war against terrorism in the Middle East. As we talk, however, remember to keep the focus on the real problem: an endless war against a nameless foe without concrete objectives. Don’t jump to conclusions just because some of our planes don’t have pilots in them.

    • The Ben Affleck-Bill Maher-Sam Harris dispute: Anti-Muslim bigotry and American imperialist policy
      The dispute that occurred on the October 3 edition of HBO’s “Real Time with Bill Maher,” between Maher and author Sam Harris, on the one hand, and prominent actor Ben Affleck, on the other, was revealing. In particular, it helped clarify the relationship between anti-Muslim bigotry, the “identity politics” of the affluent middle class and defense of American imperialist policy in the Middle East.


      Affleck heatedly responded that those positions were “gross” and “racist.” He commented, “It’s like saying ‘you shifty Jew.’” When Harris went on to claim that “Islam is the mother lode of bad ideas,” Affleck responded, quite legitimately, “That’s an ugly thing to say.”

      The actor continued, “How about the more than a billion people who aren’t fanatical, who don’t punish women, who just want to go to school, have some sandwiches… and don’t do any of the things that you’re saying all Muslims [do]?… [It’s] stereotyping.”

    • US Drone Strikes in Pakistan Kill 23 Over Four Days
      Those days also seem to be over, as another US drone strike tore through Datta Khel, North Waziristan today killing two more people. It was the fifth distinct US strike against Waziristan in just four days.

    • Imran sees general elections in 2015
      Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan said on Tuesday night that he was sure of general elections in the year 2015. "Elections will be held early next year. Nothing can stop 'Naya (new) Pakistan' from coming into being," said Imran Khan while talking to a private TV channel. Elections would be announced in a month or two, Imran Khan added.

    • Drone strikes kill 17 in NWA during Eid holidays
      The Central Intelligence Agency carried out four drone strikes against suspected militants in the North Waziristan Agency during the Eidul Azha holidays, killing 17 persons and causing injuries to several others.

    • US drones mark Eid by killing 23 in NWA

    • Challenging Drone Warfare in a U.S. Court
      On October 7, 2014, Kathy Kelly and Georgia Walker appeared before Judge Matt Whitworth in Jefferson City, MO, federal court on a charge of criminal trespass to a military facility. The charge was based on their participation, at Whiteman Air Force Base, in a June 1st 2014 rally protesting drone warfare. Kelly and Walker attempted to deliver a loaf of bread and a letter to the Base Commander, encouraging the commander to stop cooperating with any further usage of unmanned aerial vehicles, (drones) for surveillance and attacks.

    • UK-Israel trade hits record high despite Gaza carnage
      UK trade relations with Israel between January and August 2014 are reported to have reached record levels, despite worldwide public outrage against the IDF’s recent military assault on Gaza.

    • Obama’s “Strict” Standards on Civilian Deaths That Never Were
      A report published last Tuesday claims that President Barack Obama’s once-strict standards regarding civilian deaths have fallen by the wayside, as US forces intensify air strikes against the Islamic State (ISIS) in Syria and Iraq.

      What is most troubling about this specific report is that it conveys the notion that President Obama’s civilian-death standards were, at one time, tight or even “strict.”

    • National Review Online Thanks ISIS for Beheadings
      In an article for National Review Online, anti-Muslim activist David Horowitz described the benefits to conservatives of the recent beheadings carried out by the Islamic State terrorist group (ISIS).


      Horowitz is a former member of the New Left who, since his political conversion, has made a career out of alleging liberal bias on college campuses and accusing anyone who is not overtly Islamophobic of being in league with terrorists. The Southern Poverty Law Center described Horowitz as "the godfather of the modern anti-Muslim movement."

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife

    • Rolling Stone Report Rocks Koch Industries
      A recent Rolling Stone article documenting Koch Industries' "lucrative blend of pollution, speculation, law-bending and self-righteousness" over the last few decades has sparked a string of personal attacks on the reporter, Tim Dickinson, by "" and a point-by-point rebuttal from Rolling Stone.

    • Inside the Koch Brothers' Toxic Empire
      Together, Charles and David Koch control one of the world's largest fortunes, which they are using to buy up our political system. But what they don't want you to know is how they made all that money

  • Finance

  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying

  • Privacy

    • Should Everything in the World Be Facing the Internet?
      On Monday, I was pleased to see that Robert X. Cringely shares my thoughts. In an article well worth reading on Forbes, he writes: “Here’s the simple truth: it makes no sense, none, nada, for a bank to send financial transactions over the public Internet. It makes no sense for a bank or any other company to build gateways between their private networks and the public Internet. If a company PC connects to both the corporate network and the Internet, then the corporate network is vulnerable.”

      No kidding.

      Again, retailers are being hit for billions of dollars, almost daily it seems; our military defenses are being constantly prodded and breached by foreign governments; and our infrastructure is a sitting duck waiting to be exploited. It’s time we realize that not everything needs to be online.

  • Civil Rights

    • Bill O'Reilly, Bill Maher and Islamophobia
      So support for sharia law might not be all that revealing. But for Bill O'Reilly, it's a chance to draw the conclusions you wish to draw about Muslims. The Pew poll also makes clear that Muslims do not "think their religion should dictate what happens in society." Most who support sharia law think it should apply only to Muslims, and Pew notes that "most Muslims around the world express support for democracy, and most say it is a good thing when others are very free to practice their religion."

    • America Must End Its Paranoid War on Hackers
      He tells me that he used to log on for his LulzSec romps using his school Internet account so it wasn’t a surprise that he got caught. It was a surprise that it took them so long. He recounts for me the day he got busted, waking up in his bed in Galway, Ireland surrounded by policemen with machine guns. He closed his eyes and tried to go back to sleep; it was so surreal he assumed it must be a bad dream.

    • SWAT Team Raids House And Kills Homeowner Because Criminal Who Burglarized The House Told Them To
      Which seems plausible. Less than 48 hours had passed and Hooks would have had no idea he was on the receiving end of a drug task force "investigation." The word "investigation" receives the scariest of scare quotes, considering it mostly consisted of a multiple felon trying to explain away the gun, scale and meth in his possession. If the suspect had claimed he didn't rob Hooks' house, the police wouldn't have believed him. But when this same suspect starts blabbering about finding meth during his robbery, the cops are all ears, as though he were Abraham Lincoln himself, swearing on a stack of Bibles.

      How do we know all of this is bullshit? Because the police spent almost as much time searching Hooks' house -- nearly two days -- as it did between the point Hooks' house was invaded the first time (by confessed burglar Rodney Garrett) and the second time (by the SWAT team).

    • Another Person Shot by Police Near Ferguson, Protests Swelling (Watch Live)

    • Video shows officer using stun gun
      A cellphone video released Tuesday shows police in Indiana breaking a car window and using a stun gun on a man after police stopped the driver for not wearing a seat belt.

    • Breaking 43 Years of Silence, the Last FBI Burglar Tells the Story of Her Years in the Underground
      It was clear to Judi Feingold what she should do after she and seven other people broke into an FBI office near Philadelphia in 1971, removed every file and then anonymously distributed them to two members of Congress and three journalists:

      Get out of town.

      She took drastic steps. Remaining in Philadelphia seemed dangerous, so she left town and headed west, moved into the underground and lived under an assumed name, moving from place to place west of the Rockies for years, owning only a sleeping bag and what she could carry in her knapsack. As she was about to detach herself from her past geography and her personal connections, she called her parents and told them she had committed a nonviolent direct action “and was possibly being pursued by the federal government. I told them I could not be in touch by phone, and I would do my best to let them know how I was, but not where I was.”

  • DRM

    • Adobe’s e-book reader sends your reading logs back to Adobe—in plain text [Updated]
      Digital Editions even tracks which pages you've read. It might break a New Jersey Law.

    • Adobe is Spying on Users, Collecting Data on Their eBook Libraries
      Adobe has just given us a graphic demonstration of how not to handle security and privacy issues.

      A hacker acquaintance of mine has tipped me to a huge security and privacy violation on the part of Adobe. That anonymous acquaintance was examining Adobe’s DRm for educational purposes when they noticed that Digital Editions 4, the newest version of Adobe’s Epub app, seemed to be sending an awful lot of data to Adobe’s servers.

    • Adobe Digital Editions 4 Spies on Users - Because of DRM
      This column has written many times about the deep flaws of Digital Rights Management (DRM) - or "Digital Restrictions Management" as Richard Stallman rightly calls it - and the ridiculous laws that have been passed to "protect" it. What these effectively do is place copyright above basic rights - not just in the realm of copyright, but even in areas like privacy. Yesterday, another example of the folly of using DRM'd products came to light.

  • Intellectual Monopolies

    • Human Rights No, Corporate Rights Yes?
      Much has been made over the last few weeks about the desires of the Prime Minister to leave the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR). Cameron has said he wants to bring more powers back to London, because he doesn’t like the way it ‘hands power’ off – powers we British have given to that court more than 60 years ago. Most notably, he doesn’t like the way it often deals with his right wing agenda of disenfranchising people, and creeping towards a police state, but seems to be championing the way with misinformation.

    • Copyrights

      • A Unilateral Declaration of the Digital Human Rights Dangerously Mistakes Personal Data and Creative Work
        More specifically, Article 5 of the Declaration poses that “any use of the data as a creative work” is subject to prior consent of the individual. Such a formulation completely ignores the fundamental role of the public domain as well as the exceptions and limitations to copyright, which are all essential in balancing and preserving the system.

      • Why Are We Letting Critical Infrastructure Get Regulated By A Cartoon Industry?
        It’s now been 20 years since the Internet went mainstream. Today, every single aspect of private life, business, and civic society depends on a functioning net. Without it, you’re basically in exile from society.

        In some countries, coding is now the most common profession. All growth sectors are heavily technology-dependent, which always means that the net is at underpinning all of it. All celebrated entrepreneurs have built super-scaling businesses enabled by the net. We also shop for food online, we date online, we build things together online.

        It stands clear that the net is by far the most critical piece of infrastructure existing today. Not only does it build all future jobs, growth, economy, and entrepreneurship; we also exercise all our civil liberties, civic duties, and spend a lot of our social activities on this infrastructure. It’s more important than any other piece of infrastructure in society. We can do without the phone network, without cable TV, even without paved roads when we have the net.

      • Google Adds Custom Search Box For The Pirate Bay, and Others

        Google's new and improved sitelinks section has introduced a novel feature that could prove unintentionally popular with Pirate Bay fans. Alongside the same feature for other sites, the search engine now displays a custom Pirate Bay search box complete with related AutoComplete suggestions. Needless to say, copyright holders are not going to be happy with these latest improvements.

      • Finland Wants to Kill Crowdsourced Copyright Law

        The future of copyright amendments crowdsourced by the Finnish public appear to be in doubt. The citizen-drafted proposals, which received 50,000 signatures, seek to decriminalize file-sharing, but Finland's Education and Culture Committee now wants to reject the historic initiative.

Recent Techrights' Posts

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articles at aren't easy to find
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Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
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Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
20,000 victims of unauthorized Swiss legal insurance scheme
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
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Reprinted with permission from
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Reprinted with permission from
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Reprinted with permission from
Chris Rutter, ARM Ltd IPO, Winchester College & Debian
Reprinted with permission from
[Video] Microsoft Got Its Systems Cracked (Breached) Again, This Time by Russia, and It Uses Its Moles in the Press and So-called 'Linux' Foundation to Change the Subject
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Russell Coker & Debian: September 11 Islamist sympathy
Reprinted with permission from
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it's happening already
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