Bonum Certa Men Certa

Links 2/2/2015: Linux 3.19 RC7, Kodi 14.1



GNOME bluefish

Contents





GNU/Linux



  • Welcome the New Breed of Linux Users
    Some people don’t like any changes made to Linux user space which makes the operating system easier to use or configure for casual users. They would rather the user be befuddled and helpless, because according to them, people who don’t know how to open a terminal and edit a configuration file in Emacs have no business sitting at a computer keyboard for any purpose.


  • Videos: 10 Interesting Technical Talks from LinuxConf.Au 2015
    Many Linux and open source leaders gave presentations at LinuxConf.Au 2015 a few weeks ago, including Linux Creator Linus Torvalds. All of the conference videos are available on YouTube, and there were many excellent presentations -- so many it would be impossible to watch them all. The range of topics covered everything from open source governance and community management, to inspiring uses of Linux and open source technologies, to technical talks and tutorials. Here are ten interesting technical talks focused on Linux and the kernel. (Disclaimer: I have not watched every single minute of all of these videos. I'll leave it to you to decide how captivating they are.)


  • Which Linux Desktop is Right For You?
    Over the years, the debate over the best Linux desktop environment has raged on. KDE, Gnome, one of the lighter weight Linux desktops – there are so many options to choose from. In this article, I’ll examine the variety of desktops available and compare them accordingly.


  • February 2015 Issue of Linux Journal: Web Development
    I think it was in the late 1990s, possibly into the 2000s, when it was common to put a cutesy graphic on the bottom of your Web page letting everyone know your site wasn't finished. Generally the graphic was an animated GIF file of a little construction guy shoveling a pile of gravel. Mind you, this was before animated GIF files were the most annoying thing on the Internet, and long before they started getting cool again. The thing that makes me smile isn't how clever we were to make such graphics, it's the naiveté of the concept that a Web site might ever be truly finished.


  • Desktop





  • Kernel Space



    • Linux Kernel 3.19 RC7 Is Out, Last One Before Stable
      Linux kernel 3.19 RC7 was announced by Linus Torvalds and it's probably the last release in this development cycle before the branch becomes stable, most likely next week.


    • Linux 3.19-rc7 Kernel Released: Linux 3.19 Final Coming Soon
      The seventh and likely last release candidate to the Linux 3.19 kernel is now available.


    • 4 Useful Cron Alternatives For Linux
      For those who are familiar with the Unix system, you will also be familiar with the cron application that allows you to schedule and automate tasks to run on their own. We even have tutorials that show you how to get started with cron and crontabs. However, cron is not perfect, as it requires your system to be running 24 hours a day. If you have a habit of turning off your computer at night, and a cron job is scheduled in the sleeping hours, the task won’t be executed. Luckily, there are several cron alternatives that can do a better job than cron. Let’s check them out.


    • Gummiboot UEFI Boot Loader To Be Added To Systemd
      The newest feature being worked on for systemd? A boot loader, of course! It was revealed this weekend that systemd developers are looking at integrating Gummiboot into systemd.


    • Graphics Stack



    • Benchmarks





  • Applications



  • Desktop Environments/WMs



    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt



      • Interview with Lucas Falcão
        I think Krita is doing great and I really like the direction it’s going, the software it seems to be made for artists, at least I have this impression when I use the tools to work on the creation and painting of textures. I don’t hate anything in Krita, and I don’t use all the tools, but I think usability could always be improved.


      • digiKam Quick Tip: Using Album Categories
        Did you know that you can assign categories to albums in digiKam? To do this, right-click on an album, choose Properties from the context menu, and the desired category from the Category drop-down list.


      • SoK Final Report – Theme Designing for Pairs
        Theme designing for pairs is my Season of KDE project, mentored by Heena Mahour. In this project i created new themes for KDE-Edu project “Game Pairs”.






  • Distributions



    • New Releases



    • PCLinuxOS/Mageia/Mandriva Family



      • I Messed Up GRUB2... What a Happy Mistake!
        Yesterday, I was using my daughter's desktop computer, which is a Mageia 4/PicarOS dual-boot, when I noticed something that has happended before: after running an update of packages, Mageia changes GRUB2 and erases the entry to boot PicarOS.

        I am not very GRUB2 literate. Last time that it happened, I solved the problem with GRUB Customizer, but it wouldn't help this time.

        I tried the Mageia GRUB tool in the Control Center to no avail.

        Then I installed the KDE package that lets one configure GRUB2... and that's when I messed up: trying to recover the PicarOS boot entry, I seemed to have installed a useless boot entry on the MBR and the computer, logically, could neither boot PicarOS not Mageia.

        I looked for the Mageia 4 install DVD to run the rescue tool but, since I could not find it, I ran the rescue tools from the Mageia 3 install DVD instead. It did not work; GRUB2 could not be rescued.




    • Red Hat Family



    • Debian Family



      • Tried to boot my laptop from a cafe...
        Today I tried to boot it in a cafe, off-line and without the extra disk. It was not possible. Systemd would just wait indefinitely for some start-up jobs (it was waiting for the missing disk to come on-line among some other things). Fortunately, I had the extra disk with me, so I attached it and tried again. Still for no use. Systemd now waited for the network interfaces. So I had to actually connect an ethernet cable to a router just to get the crap to boot, and then unplug it and walk back to my table.


      • Derivatives



        • Canonical/Ubuntu



          • Why can Ubuntu dethrone Android and iOS?
            Next week we will finally get to see the first commercially available Ubuntu smartphone when the BQ Aquaris e4.5 rolls out of its incubation unit. It feels like years since the Ubuntu Edge’s doomed for failure crowdfunding campaign…failed, yet there is still a whole lotta love for the mobile OS that some genuinely think has a chance at rivalling Android. Why is it so popular though?

            Canonical, the company behind the Ubuntu OS, has spent a couple of years stripping down Android to the bare bones and replacing it with technology that allows it to keep the OS constantly updated at a level not enjoyed by Android users. The OS back end is divided into a trio of partitions that are comprised of three separate sections of code: one each for the device, manufacturer or carrier, and Ubuntu. It means that each one can deliver bug fixes as-and-when they are needed, and customisation specific to the carrier or manufacturer will be far easier to implement. Basically if you’re an Android user constantly bemoaning the time it takes for your update to arrive, we think you’ll have a lot of joy here.


          • Flavours and Variants



            • Should You Upgrade From Windows 7 To Windows 8.1 Or Linux Mint?


              Upgrading your computer from Windows 7 to Windows 8.1 is not guaranteed to be a seamless experience whereby you click a few buttons and hey presto it works.

              To prove this point I took a Windows 7 computer and installed Windows 8.1 in two different ways to see what would happen. In both cases the result was the same.

              The computer that I used for this experiment was a Dell Inspiron 3521. After upgrading from Windows 7 to Windows 8.1 the video drivers were lost and I was left with a fuzzy low resolution screen. The network drivers were also a bit ropey. The same thing happened when I installed Windows 8.1 straight from disk as a clean installation.

              To fix the problems all I had to do was download the correct drivers and install them but that meant navigating the Dell website (which isn't a particularly easy affair) and download the correct drivers and install them in the correct order.

              Whilst the task in hand was fairly straight forward it clearly shows that Windows doesn't just work in the same way that when you install Linux for the first time you might have to install extra drivers and codecs as well.












  • Devices/Embedded



    • Phones



      • The Driver's Licence on the Mobile Phone? Its Now Live. Not in the country you thought: it happened first in Dubai
        Its part of the Police App that they have here, which will for example let you do an accident report if you had a fender-bender type accident, and post it in 3 minutes, so for example for insurance claims etc. You take a few pictures of the car and register the accident report with your Driver's Licence number and your car licence plate, plus the other car's licence plate, and thats it. The police will review both sides of the story, the pictures from both cars, and issue the official police report for your insurance agency. If the police department has to send an officer to come see the accident, that costs about 2,000 dollars per visit in the time the police have to allocate. Now everything is done electronically and you get your official police accident report by the next day - straight to your mobile phone haha. Brilliant.


      • Delaware aims to be 1st with digital driver's licenses
        Delaware is aiming to be the first state to offer virtual driver's licenses accessed through a secure smartphone app.


      • Android



        • Android 5.0 Lollipop Update For Galaxy Note 4 Delayed Further
          The Android 5.0 Lollipop update for Samsung Galaxy Note 4 has been delayed by Oculus. Samsung already started rolling out the software update for various handsets such as the Galaxy S5, Galaxy Note 3 and Galaxy S4. However, the Android 5.0 Lollipop is yet to arrive on the South Korean tech giant’s latest phablets, the Galaxy Note 4 and the Galaxy Note Edge.


        • Applications? Yes, The Applications Set Android/Linux On Fire
          Remember when folks were telling us that GNU/Linux wouldn’t fly because it lacked applications? Consider Android/Linux. It had zero applications a while back but now it’s on fire. 2 billion applications downloaded a day. Amazing.


        • Taiwan amid top-5 Google Play markets globally, says Google Play executive
          There have been more than one million free and chargeable applications at Google Play, with two billion downloads a day on average from about 190 countries. Google paid a total of US$5 billion to developers of Google Play applications during June 2013-June 2014.


        • Lollipop-based Paranoid Android 5 Alpha 1 is here!
          The Paranoid Android team just announced the release of the first alpha version of the Lollipop-based Paranoid Android 5.


        • Android just achieved something it will take Apple years to do
          It's easy to be negative about Android's outlook these days. Apple just posted the most profitable quarter of any company ever, largely on the back of runaway iPhone sales. And Google faces an unprecedented threat from "forked" versions of Android — independently developed offshoots out of Google's control.


        • Android 5.1 Lollipop to release next month?
          Amidst the problems and issues surrounding the latest Android 5.0 Lollipop OS, its alleged major update Android 5.1 is finally taking shape. Latest whispers say that the OS update will be rolled out near the end of February.










Free Software/Open Source



  • How Pivotal cracked the one-billion-dollar code
    Pivotal’s Cloud Foundry, an open source Platform-as-a-Service offering, just clocked the largest first-year financial bonanza in open source history: spun out of EMC and VMware in 2013 and trading since February 2014 Pivotal pulled in $40m during three quarters of active selling it said last week. As good as this is for Pivotal, it’s perhaps even better for would-be open source entrepreneurs, who may finally have a blueprint for large-scale financial success.


  • Four open source networking projects explained
    Open source projects and protocols have huge potential for networking. Initiatives such as OpenStack and OpenDaylight have attracted the attention both of end-users, as evidenced by the Open Networking User Group (ONUG), major vendors participating in OpenDaylight, OpenFlow and OpenStack, and telecoms creating their own open source efforts like the Open Networking Lab.


  • Zimbra gets back to open source roots
    The open source market landscape is growing by leaps and bounds, and it's at a time like this that it's important for Zimbra, a provider of collaboration software, to reinvigorate its open source roots. Here's how we plan to encourage increased participation in community open source projects in 2015.


  • Good design matters for open source projects
    The design of everyday things is an important cultural movement. Of that, most of us have no doubt. We want our tools to work flawlessly and naturally. And open source projects are catching up on this too.

    Like, Elementary OS, an open source operating system that hopes to make the Linux desktop accessible for everyone. And many other open source web applications, like Ghost, Taiga, and the upcoming Flarum. Also, BeautifulOpen is a collection of open source projects with great websites and a great source for inspiration. They all have designers on their core team.


  • Events



    • Does open source power your entertainment media center?
      Open source media center solutions have really taken off in the past few years, and there are now many more approaches to using both open source software and open hardware to power entertainment on your television. If you're consuming media with the help of open source, we're curious: how are you doing it? Are you running Kodi (formerly XBMC), MythTV, MediaPortal, or something similar on a custom-built machine? Or are you going slim and using a specialized Linux build on top of the Raspberry Pi? Or are you doing something else entirely?


    • FOSDEM 2015
      I had a chat with the Diaspora folks at the booth next to us and greatly look forward to the upcoming release. They had a nice flyer-y paper which also included some development stats with the number of active contributors and such, a very useful thing to have so you can quickly see how a project is doing. Diaspora had a hard time since the crazy start, but things are picking up again and 66 people contributed to this important project over the last year.




  • SaaS/Big Data



    • Report: Companies are Investing in Big Data, But Not All Succeed With It
      Capgemini, a consulting and technology services company, has announced the findings of a global survey into the use of Big Data in corporate decision-making. An Economist Intelligence Unit report “The Deciding Factor: Big Data & Decision making”, commissioned by Capgemini, shows that nine out of ten business leaders believe data is now the fourth factor of production, as fundamental to business as land, labor and capital.


    • Eucalyptus Cloud Originator Rich Wolski on the Cloud and Big Data
      All the way back in early 2008, OStatic broke the news about Eucalyptus, an open source infrastructure for cloud computing on clusters that duplicated the functionality of Amazon's EC2, using the Amazon command-line tools. The project resided at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and was driven and overseen by Rich Wolski, a professer there (shown here).




  • BSD



  • FSF/FSFE/GNU/SFLC



  • Openness/Sharing



  • Programming



    • Perl 6.0 Might Finally Be Released This Year
      It was revealed this weekend at FOSDEM in Brussels that the plan is to hopefully release Perl 6.0 by this Christmas.

      Larry Wall is hoping to finally see the Perl 6.0 release out this year, with version 1.0 of Perl 6.0 by Christmas. It's not yet certain Perl 6.0 will make it out this year but that's the goal.

      Perl 6 has been in development since 2000 as a big update over Perl 5. Perl 6 seeks to significantly improve the programming language and will break compatibility with Perl 5 though a compatibility mode is expected. Going back a while now have been multiple Perl 6 implementations albeit none complete; a basic overview of Perl 6 can be found via Wikipedia.


    • A peculiar development setup, again
      I never have enough screen real-estate. I sometimes keep six files open at the same time in split-screens, but that requires my Vim windows to be maximized, and then I don’t see the terminal. So I can not see the results of auto-tests (for example), and the relevant code at the same time.


    • 9 Best IDEs and Code Editors for JavaScript Users
      Web designing and developing is one of the trending sectors in the recent times, where more and more peoples started to search for their career opportunities. But, Getting the right opportunity as a web developer or graphic designer is not just a piece of cake for everyone, It certainly requires a strong mind presence as well as right skills to find the find the right job. There are a lot of websites available today which can help you to get the right job description according to your knowledge. But still if you want to achieve something in this sector you must have some excellent skills like working with different platforms, IDEs and various other tools too.






Leftovers



  • Health/Nutrition



    • Norway finds first case of mad cow disease, says food safe
      Norway reported its first ever case of mad cow disease on Thursday, saying the instance was an isolated one and telling consumers it was still safe to eat beef and drink milk.

      Tests at a British laboratory confirmed the disease, also known as bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), in a 15-year-old cow, which had been slaughtered, the Norwegian Food Safety Authority said.




  • Security



  • Defence/Police/Secrecy/Aggression



    • New Mexico toddler shoots both parents with one bullet after finding gun
      A toddler in Albuquerque, New Mexico, shot both his parents with just one bullet on Saturday, after apparently reaching in to his mother’s handbag to get her iPad and coming across a loaded gun instead.

      The 3-year-old and his 2-year-old sister were taken into the care of local authorities.


    • 'There was no snowball fight': Video showing New Rochelle police officer pulling gun on teens not what it seems: cops
      A video that appears to catch a New Rochelle police officer pointing a gun at a group of teenagers who were having a snowball fight — and went viral on the Internet — is not what it appears to be, cops said.

      “There was no snowball fight,” New Rochelle Deputy Police Commissioner Anthony Murphy told the Daily News, calling the video a piece of “clever mischief.”

      He said police were responding to a 911 call around 4 p.m. Friday that a teenager standing in a group of six near the Heritage Houses had pulled a gun from his waistband and pointed it at another person.


    • UK government feared terrorists would weaponise Ebola
      British military experts were asked to draw up guidance at the height of the Ebola outbreak in West Africa late last year on the feasibility and potential impact of terrorists ‘weaponising’ the virus.

      The Ministry of Defence has released a heavily redacted report, prepared in October, that identified three different scenarios regarding the exploitation of Ebola for bioterrorism.


    • Drone wars: the gamers recruited to kill – video
      In tiny bunkers in the United States, young pilots are operating unmanned drones targeting 'bad people' in Pakistan. Recruited at video game fairs by military leaders who know the value of games that glamourise 'militainment', drone pilots are left traumatised by the civilian casualties – or 'collateral damage' – their strikes cause. Psychologically distanced from the enemy, are drones the future of warfare?


    • US rethinks arming Ukraine’s troops
      With Russia-backed separatists pressing their attacks in Ukraine, NATO’s military commander, General Philip M. Breedlove, now supports providing defensive weapons and equipment to Kiev’s beleaguered forces, and an array of administration and military officials appear to be edging toward that position, US officials said Sunday.


    • U.S. considering giving arms to Ukraine forces, NYT reports
      Separatist leader says rebels plan to boost fighting force to 100,000 men; shells continue to fall in Donetsk, killing 15 over the weekend; Russian official: If U.S. government decides to go forward, it will lead to irreversible results.


    • Ukraine Conflict: US Mulls Giving Fresh Arms to Kiev Forces as Tensions Escalate Post Failure of Peace Talks
      The United States is mulling over supplying Ukrainian forces with defensive weapons and equipment as tensions have escalated in the region after peace talks aimed at ending the fight in eastern Ukraine failed on Saturday.


    • 'Censored Voices' film tears apart Israel's heroic narrative of Six-Day War
      In the wake of Israel’s seemingly miraculous triumph in the Six-Day War in 1967, the country’s victorious soldiers were lionized as heroes.

      But in private, even just one week after the conflict, many of them didn’t feel that way. One describes feeling sick to his stomach in battle and collapsing into a trench.

      “I wanted to be left alone,” he says. “I didn’t think of the war.”

      Another talks about watching an old Arab man evacuated from his house.

      “I had an abysmal feeling that I was evil,” the soldier says.


    • Michael Jansen: Netanyahu the manipulator
      Binyamin Netanyahu’s latest scrap with Hizbollah has given his Likud bloc a boost in Israeli opinion polls, placing the Likud at the top of the line-up for the first time since the Labour and Hatnua parties merged on December 10 to form the Zionist Union.


    • Marwan’s calls tapped
      SUSPENDED national police chief Alan Purisima and US troops used Marwan’s wife as a “tracer” to pinpoint the precise location of the world’s most wanted terrorist, a police general privy to the ongoing probe of the Mamasapano massacre said Sunday.




  • Transparency Reporting



    • Another Kind of Isolation
      In 2006 and 2008, the Bureau of Prisons quietly created new restrictive units for terrorists or other inmates they feared might coordinate crimes from behind bars. The Communication Management Units (CMUs) were designed to more tightly monitor and restrict inmates’ communication with the outside world. The units, at Terre Haute, Indiana and Marion, Illinois, operated largely in secret, without any formal policies or procedures in place — until last week.






  • Finance



  • PR/AstroTurf/Lobbying



    • The British Army is Creating a Battalion of "Facebook Warriors"
      Warfare is a constantly changing landscape, from the weapons that are used to the battlefields they're fought on. Amidst mountains of Snowden leaks from the NSA and GCHQ, it's no longer a mystery that the digital warfare is advancing quickly, and the British Army just upped its digital artillery.




  • Privacy



    • Verizon Will Now Let Users Kill Previously Indestructible Tracking Code
      Verizon says it will soon offer customers a way to opt out from having their smartphone and tablet browsing tracked via a hidden un-killable tracking identifier.

      The decision came after a ProPublica article revealed that an online advertiser, Turn, was exploiting the Verizon identifier to respawn tracking cookies that users had deleted.
    • Without broadband under Title II, Verizon will get off scot-free for ‘supercookies’
      Revelations this week that Verizon Wireless secretly used “supercookies” to track customers’ browsing habits underlines a less-talked about benefit of the FCC’s potential reclassification of broadband as a Title II public utility — consumer privacy protection.


    • New e-mail shows feds considered snooping on cars parked at gun shows
      Nearly six years ago, two federal law enforcement agencies considered using license plate readers (LPRs) at gun shows—at least in the Phoenix, Arizona area.

      LPRs scan plates at a very high speed—often 60 plates per second—and record the date, time, and precise location that a given plate was seen. Typically, on a patrol car, that plate is then immediately compared to a list of wanted or stolen cars, and if a match is found, the software alerts the officer. But all scans are routinely kept by various law enforcement agencies for long periods of time, sometimes as long as years or more.


    • The FBI’s plan to collect everyone’s DNA just got a huge boost from congress
      In 2011, 1 in 25 Americans was arrested. In a few years, if the FBI has its way, the federal government will possess the DNA of all of those people and more. Under the radar of most lawmakers and journalists, the Bureau—with private industry and congress’ help—is pushing the most massive expansion of biometric state surveillance since the invention of the fingerprint.


    • Attorney General Nominee: NSA Surveillance is "Constitutional and Effective"
      On Capitol Hill, attorney general nominee Loretta Lynch will return today for day two of her confirmation hearing. If confirmed, Lynch will become the first African-American woman to serve as attorney general. During Wednesday’s hearing, Lynch described the National Security Agency’s spying programs as "constitutional and effective" and defended the government’s surveillance operations.


    • Watchdog: White House has done little on surveillance reform
      A federal privacy watchdog tasked with reviewing the National Security Agency’s controversial spy programs said Thursday the White House has agreed to many of its suggested reforms but taken little action.
    • Privacy Board Says NSA Doesn't Know How Effective Its Collection Programs Are, Doesn't Much Care Either
      The Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board (PCLOB) has just released its assessment [pdf link] of the NSA's ability to follow instructions. One year ago, it assessed the Section 215 bulk records collection. Six months later, it assessed the Section 702 program, which hoovers up email communications. Now, it has followed up on its recommendations and found the NSA surprisingly cooperative.


    • PGP creator Phil Zimmermann: 'Intelligence agencies have never had it so good'
      The recent hack against Sony Pictures is likely to have made companies of all sizes consider upping their cybersecurity measures. Perhaps, though, it’s also a different kind of wake-up call: a reason to think less about security, and more about privacy.

      That’s the belief of Phil Zimmermann – the creator of email encryption software Pretty Good Privacy (PGP), and now president and co-founder of secure communications company Silent Circle – initially expressed in a blog post, and expanded on in an interview with the Guardian.

      “Sony had all kinds of things: intrusion detection, firewalls, antivirus … But they got hacked anyway. The security measures that enterprises do frequently get breached. People break in anyway: they overcome them,” says Zimmermann.
    • Hackers Use Old Lure on Web to Help Syrian Government
      Mr. Assad was also the victim of cyberattacks, but of a far more advanced nature.

      A National Security Agency document dated June 2010, written by the agency’s chief of “Access and Target Development,” describes how the shipment of “computer network devices (servers, routers, etc.) being delivered to our targets throughout the world are intercepted” by the agency. The document, published recently by Der Spiegel, the German magazine, came from the huge trove taken by Edward J. Snowden; this one shows a photograph of N.S.A. workers slicing open a box of equipment from Cisco Systems, a major manufacturer of network equipment.


    • 'Anonymized' Credit Card Data Not So Anonymous
      Credit card data Relevant Products/Services isn't quite as anonymous as promised, a new study says. Scientists showed they can identify you with more than 90 percent accuracy by looking at just four purchases, three if the price is included -- and this is after companies "anonymized" the transaction records, saying they wiped away names and other personal details. The study out of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, published Thursday in the journal Science, examined three months of credit card records for 1.1 million people.
    • Nullification Season: 200 State Bills and Counting
      It’s less than one month into the 2015 state legislative season and the Tenth Amendment Center counts more than 200 bills seeking to block or limit federal power.


    • “Prism” Exhibit and SSMU Art & Expression mixer
      Ever feel like you’re being watched? Well, chances are, you’re probably right. If you’ve ever wondered about modern surveillance but have been too creeped out to pursue your curiosity, it might be time to face your fears and check out the “PRISM” exhibit this week. A solo exhibition by Vancouver-based David Spriggs, “PRISM” is a series of works that explore modern surveillance and its uncanny omnipresence in our daily lives. The name of the exhibit alludes in part to the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) program, which was exposed by Edward Snowden in 2009. Looking at different modes of surveillance, from cameras to digital scanners, Spriggs’ large-scale works are bound to inform and probably also intimidate. If you really want to know how closely Big Brother is watching, “PRISM” may offer some creative insight.




  • Civil Rights



    • The Swedish Schindler who disappeared
      During World War Two, a young Swedish diplomat saved tens of thousands of Hungarian Jews from the Nazis. But in January 1945 Soviet troops arrested him - he was never seen in public again.


    • China is world's worst jailer of the press; global tally second worst on record


      More than 200 journalists are imprisoned for their work for the third consecutive year, reflecting a global surge in authoritarianism. China is the world’s worst jailer of journalists in 2014.


    • Greste family joy at journalist son's release
      The family of Australian journalist Peter Greste has thanked everyone who helped secure his release from an Egyptian jail after 400 days.

      'Peter Greste is a free man,' brother Andrew Greste said, with his delighted parents Lois and Juris by his side, in Brisbane on Monday.


    • Peter Greste: Australian journalist on his way home after being released and deported from Egypt
      Australian journalist Peter Greste has been deported from Egypt after 400 days behind bars, and has flown to Cyprus on his way home to Australia.

      Greste was set free by order of Egypt's president Abdel Fattah al-Sisi under a new law allowing foreign prisoners to be deported.


    • Glimmer of Hope for Assange
      There is a window of hope, thanks to a U.N. human rights body, for a solution to the diplomatic asylum of Wikileaks founder Julian Assange, holed up in the embassy of Ecuador in London for the past two and a half years.


    • John B. Geer had hands up when shot by police, four officers say in documents
      John B. Geer stood with his hands on top of the storm door of his Springfield, Va., townhouse and calmly said to four Fairfax County police officers with guns pointed at him: “I don’t want anybody to get shot . . . . And I don’t wanna get shot, ’cause I don’t want to die today.”


    • The controversial punishment of Barrett Brown: A deep dive
      I’ve read a lot of criticism recently about the sentencing of Barrett Brown. The online commentary mostly portrays Brown’s sentence as a disturbing example of prosecutorial abuse, in which the Obama Administration’s war on journalists and war on hackers came together to shred First Amendment freedoms. I wondered, is that true? What really happened in the case, and was Brown’s sentence troublesome or not?
    • Fox Host Tells Caller Her Bipolar Disorder Is "Made Up" And "The Latest Fad" For Money
      Fox News Radio host Tom Sullivan told a caller who said she suffered from bipolar disorder that her illness is "something made up by the mental health business" and just "the latest fad." When the caller told Sullivan that she "would not be alive today" if she hadn't received mental health treatment, Sullivan wondered if "maybe somebody's talked you into feeling and thinking this way."


    • The Coming Biological Infowar: US Proposes DNA Database
      While precision medicine is indeed a powerful tool in fighting disease and repairing injury - in fact, truly the future of medicine - those appointing themselves as its arbiter in the US have already demonstrated they cannot be trusted with such a responsibility.




  • Internet/Net Neutrality



    • Time Warner Cable's 97% Profit Margin on High-Speed Internet Service Exposed.
      In our Petition for Investigation of Time Warner Cable (TWC) and Comcast, we point out that TWC's High-Speed Internet service has a 97% profit margin and a number of people asked how that statistic was derived. Simple. Time Warner Cable provides the information, (with some caveats).

      Below is the actual financial information excerpted from the Time Warner Cable, 2013 SEC-filed annual report. (Please note that this same mathematics is also used by Comcast and probably Verizon and AT&T, though they do not explicitly detail their financials in this way.)

      Moreover, we need to put this financial information in context to what customers are paying, and more specifically with the Time Warner Cable Triple Play bill that's been featured in previous articles.


    • Before Net Neutrality: The Surprising 1940s Battle for Radio Freedom
      As we again set policies that define core power relationships for a new medium, we might look to our past to discern lessons for charting our future. For the media system we’ve inherited—one dominated by a small number of corporations, lightly regulated in terms of public interest protections, and offset by weak public alternatives—was not inevitable or natural; it resulted from the outcomes of specific policy battles, and from specific logics and values triumphing over others.




  • Intellectual Monopolies



    • Copyrights



      • Downloading Fatwa Issued By Turkish Religious Leaders


        Turkey’s top religious body has handed down a fatwa in response to a question raised on the issue of illegal downloading. Obtaining content without permission from creators is forbidden, the Diyanet said. Meanwhile, a Catholic Church debate on the same topic raised an interesting dilemma.








Recent Techrights' Posts

Inclusion of Dissent and Diversity of Views (Opinions, Interpretations, Scenarios)
Stand for freedom of expression as much as you insist on software freedom
Jonathan Cohen, Charles Fussell & Debian embezzlement
Reprinted with permission from disguised.work
GNU/Linux Continues to Get More Prevalent Worldwide (Also on the Desktop)
Desktops (or laptops) aren't everything, but...
Upcoming Themes and Articles in Techrights
we expect to have already caught up with most of the administrivia and hopefully we'll be back to the prior pace some time later this week
Links 16/04/2024: Levente "anthraxx" Polyák as Arch Linux 2024 Leader, openSUSE Leap Micro 6 Now Alpha, Facebook Blocking News
Links for the day
Apology & Correction: Daniele Scasciafratte & Mozilla, OSCAL, Albania dating
Reprinted with permission from the Free Software Fellowship
 
IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, April 16, 2024
IRC logs for Tuesday, April 16, 2024
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
Examining Code of Conduct violations
Reprinted with permission from the Free Software Fellowship
Ruben Schade's Story Shows the Toxicity of Social Control Media, Not GNU/Linux
The issue here is Social Control Media [sic], which unlike the media rewards people for brigading otherwise OK or reasonable people
Upgrading IRCd
We use the latest Debian BTW
The Free Software Community is Under Attack (Waged Mostly by Lawyers, Not Developers)
Licensing and legalese may seem "boring" or "complicated" (depending on where one stands w.r.t. development), but it matters a great deal
Grasping at Straws in IBM (Red Hat Layoff Rumours in 2024)
researching rumours around Red Hat layoffs
Who is a real Debian Developer?
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
Links 16/04/2024: Many More Layoffs, Broadcom/VMware Probed (Antitrust)
Links for the day
Links 16/04/2024: Second Sunday After Easter and "Re-inventing the Wheel"
Links for the day
Where is the copyright notice and license for Debian GNU/Linux itself?
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
Halász Dávid & IBM Red Hat, OSCAL, Albania dating
Reprinted with permission from the Free Software Fellowship
Next Week Marks a Year Since Red Hat Mass Layoffs, Another Round Would be "Consistent With Other Layoffs at IBM."
"From anon: Global D&I team has been cut in half."
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
IRC Proceedings: Monday, April 15, 2024
IRC logs for Monday, April 15, 2024
Links 15/04/2024: Navartis, AWS and Tesla Layoffs
Links for the day
Gemini Links 15/04/2024: YAML Issues and Gemtext Specification 0.24.0
Links for the day
Richard Stallman to Give Public Talk in Portugal on Wednesday
new addition to his page
Richard Stallman's Hair Has Grown Back and He Does Not Talk About Cancer
May he live a long and happy life
New Video of Richard Stallman's Talk in Italy (Delivered a Week Ago)
a working copy of the video
Microsoft Windows Falling to New Lows in the United Kingdom and Worldwide
What's noteworthy here is that there's no sign at all of a Windows rebound
[Meme] Quantity of European Patents
they've rigged the system to make more money
Why do free software organizations eliminate community representatives?
Reprinted with permission from the Free Software Fellowship
[Teaser] Freenode LTD: What Happened
Upcoming series based on insiders' account with evidence
Links 15/04/2024: Signs of Desperation at Microsoft and Tesla Employees Brace for Mass Layoffs (Update: Yes, Over 10% at Tesla Laid Off)
Links for the day
Matthias Kirschner & FSFE People Trafficking, coercion of volunteers
Reprinted with permission from the Free Software Fellowship
Gemini Links 15/04/2024: Profectus Alpha 0.4 and RPG of One Capsule Progress
Links for the day
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
IRC Proceedings: Sunday, April 14, 2024
IRC logs for Sunday, April 14, 2024
Oceania: GNU/Linux Measured at Lower Than the International Average (4% or 7% Including ChromeOS)
statCounter's data
Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario (HRTO) Does Not Wish to Become an Instrument of Cost-Free Harassment or 'Cheap Revenge', It Says "Justice is Not Free. Quite the Contrary. Justice is Expensive."
Long story short, there is no lawsuit, there is a just a hateful, lying idiot abusing "the system" (which this idiot rejects entirely)