Bonum Certa Men Certa

Links 8/11/2016: SUSE Release, Android Distribution Stats

GNOME bluefish



  • Techrights Turns 10 Years Old
    The site Techrights is turning 10 years old. Though now called Techrights, it was best known as Boycott Novell until 2010. It has become an internationally recognized site whose aim has been advocacy of digital rights with the goal of maximizing freedom, reducing surveillance, and generally promoting the sharing of knowledge. This, in turn, requires transparent systems, open licensing terms, no censorship, and active collaboration among parties. Its focus has always included the fight against software patents and in recent years it pays special attention to the goings on and intrigues within the European Patent Office and their attempt to bring by hook or crook software patents into Europe.

  • Desktop

    • Lenovo releases BIOS for loading Linux on Yoga 900, IdeaPad 710S BIOS
      Lenovo took some heat from Linux users a few months ago when it was discovered that some of the company’s recent Windows laptops were configured in a way that blocked them from running Linux or other operating systems.

      Some saw a conspiracy, while others pointed out that it had to do with the lack of Linux drivers for the storage configuration in those laptops. Either way, the end result was that it was difficult, if not impossible to install Linux on a Lenovo Yoga 900 or IdeaPad 710 notebook.

    • After protest, Lenovo brings Linux compatibility to Yoga 900 and 900S [Ed: Techrights started the protest]
      Lenovo created a stir when it said the Yoga 900 and 900S hybrids would work only with Windows, not Linux. The company has now changed its stance, bringing Linux support to those PCs.

      The PC maker earlier this month issued a BIOS update so Linux can be loaded on Yoga 900, 900S and IdeaPad 710 models.

      The BIOS update adds an AHCI (Advance Host Controller Interface) SATA controller mode so users can load Linux on the laptops.

      This is a Linux-only BIOS, meaning it should be used only by those who want to load the OS. If you want to continue with Windows, do not load the firmware.

    • New Laptop / Problems with Windows part 896,324
      I had mentioned previously that I had been forced to purchase a new laptop. I decided that I didn't want another Thinkpad. The Lenovo ones no longer have the high quality they had in the IBM days and while support is still pretty good by todays dismal standards it's not worth the premium price. (If I'm buying it with my own money that is.) I had heard good thing about Dells' Linux support so I looked into their offerings and ended up buying a Precision 7510. Mind you this model came with Windows 7 installed but I didn't mind. As I wanted to install Debian according to my own specs anyway, I was ok with just knowing that the hardware would be compatible. So I prepared a Jessie USB installation stick (This model doesn't have a CD/DVD drive.) and shrunk down the Windows installation (but not deleted it altogether for reasons to be explained below.)

  • Server

    • Mitchell Hashimoto talks about new technologies and DevOp tools

      A few weeks earlier, when I'd talked with him to kick off IT Pro's coverage of ATO, I purposefully didn't ask him about his upcoming conference talks because I didn't want to spoil it for him or his audience. That he would talk about DevOps tools was a given. After all, HashiCorp, the company he co-founded and where he's CTO, is known for tools like Vagrant, Packer, Terraform, Consul and Vault, which are designed to help DevOps secure and operate distributed application infrastructures. In this keynote he would be talking about automation tools in general. Later in the day, he'd conduct a workshop that would focus specifically on his company's products.

  • Kernel Space

    • Linux Foundation Certified Engineer: Alexandre Krispin
      Back in 2005, when I was 18, I met someone from Germany who used SUSE. In 2007 I bought my first computer from Apple, with Mac OS X. When I had to change my computer—maybe 2 years later—I did not have a lot of money and heard that those using Linux had to pay less to get the same quality offered by Unix systems like Mac OS X. I say "quality" because I read at the time that it was hassle-free because there were no viruses, etc. That’s what initially hooked me on Linux (that and Apple products were too expensive). When I finally started using Linux, I experienced the joy of being free to do whatever I wanted with my own computer—the desktop was completely customizable.

    • The Linux Foundation Launches its 2016 Guide to the Open Cloud
      The Linux Foundation has announced the release of its 2016 report "Guide to the Open Cloud: Current Trends and Open Source Projects." This third annual report provides a comprehensive look at the state of open cloud computing. The foundation originally created the guide in response to market and industry confusion about which projects really stand out.

      According to Libby Clark, writing on "The report aggregates and analyzes industry research to provide insights on how trends in containers, microservices, and more shape cloud computing today. It also defines the open source cloud and cloud native computing and discusses why the open cloud is important to just about every industry."

    • Linux Foundation Appoints Jeff Garzik to Board of Directors
      Garzik, formerly a 10-year employee at Red Hat, brings a wealth of Bitcoin Core development experience back to the leading open-source software development foundation. The Linux Foundation is spearheading a conglomerate of organizations involved with the Hyperledger Project, of which Bloq is a member. Garzik’s presence on the Linux Foundation’s board should hopefully help to bridge ongoing efforts in the open source, Linux world with advancements in the cryptocurrency space.
    • Move over Bitcoin, the blockchain is only just getting started
      It's easy to think we've reached peak Bitcoin, but the blockchain at the heart of cryptocurrencies contains the seeds of something revolutionary.

      The blockchain is a decentralised electronic ledger with duplicate copies on thousands of computers around the world. It cannot be altered retrospectively, allowing asset ownership and transfer to be recorded without external verification.

      Investors have now realised the blockchain is bigger than Bitcoin. In the first quarter of 2016, venture-capital investment in blockchain startups overtook that in pure-play Bitcoin companies for the first time, according to industry researcher CoinDesk, which has tallied $1.1 billion (€£840m) in deals to date.

      Even governments have taken an interest. Sir Mark Walport, the UK government's chief scientific adviser, published a report on the blockchain in January this year, outlining how the massively distributed shared ledger is "a database that tracks who owns a financial, physical or electronic asset". But it could also, say, monitor driverless cars.

    • Linux Foundation Fumbles
      FLASH? LF webinars depend on FLASH!? This is the 21st century. Folks are using HTML5 and lots of other popular standards. Why is LF trying to hold the world back to a deprecated technology, one that only awkwardly works with their kernel?

    • Linux Foundation ‘Fails’ Linux Mint: Suggests Upgrade to Windows or Mac
      Excuse me if I have a little fun at the Linux Foundation’s expense.

      Linux Foundation failed textThis morning while perusing the day’s tech news, I ran across an article on about a free webinar, “Open Source Automotive: How Shared Development Will Drive the Industry Forward,” being hosted on Wednesday by the Linux Foundation. This sounded like something I wouldn’t mind spending an hour watching, so I registered. Afterwards, I clicked a “Test Your System” link, just to make sure that I’d have no problems using the good ol’ FOSS Force machine.

      The results were a big surprise, and hearkened back to the bad ol’ days when open source and the rest of the world usually didn’t work and play well together. Browser, cookies, bandwidth and “Flash Test Video” all passed with flying colors. What didn’t pass? Our Linux Mint operating system.

      “We have detected that your operating system does not meet the optimal webinar specifications for listening to and/or viewing webinars,” the test automation said. “We recommend the following operating systems: Windows 10, Windows 8, Windows 7, and the latest Mac OS X.”

      For an online event being hosted by the Linux Foundation? Really? I understand that the foundation isn’t very interested in desktop Linux, but…

    • Graphics Stack

    • Benchmarks

      • OpenGL vs. Vulkan With AMDGPU-PRO 16.40, Compared To NVIDIA On Linux
        At the end of October AMD released the long-awaited AMDGPU-PRO 16.40 update. For some birthday benchmarking fun today, I finished up a comparison of the AMDGPU-PRO 16.40 stack with its proprietary OpenGL and Vulkan components on various AMD GPUs compared to NVIDIA results using the 375.10 binary driver.

  • Applications

  • Desktop Environments/WMs

    • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

      • KaOS 2016.11 Distro Gets KDE Plasma 5.8.3 & Linux Kernel 4.8, AMDGPU by Default
        Today, November 7, 2016, the developers of the KaOS rolling GNU/Linux distribution were pleased to announce the release and immediate availability for download of KaOS 2016.11.

      • KaOS 2016.11
        KaOS is pleased to announce the 2016.11 release. As always with this rolling distribution, you will find the very latest packages for the Plasma Desktop, this includes Frameworks 5.27.0, Plasma 5.8.3, KDE Applications 16.08.2 & not yet released ports of KDE Applications. All built on Qt 5.7.0.

      • Krita 3.1 Digital Painting App Gets Closer, Beta 3 Is Out with More Improvements
        Today, November 7, 2016, the developers of the popular, open-source and cross-platform Krita digital painting software have released the third Beta milestone towards the major 3.1 update of the application.

        Krita 3.1 Beta 3 is here exactly two weeks after the announcement of the second Beta development snapshot, in an attempt to polish the upcoming release by patching various annoyances and adding some minor improvements. For examples, several crashes were addresses, and it's possible to load swatch names in ACO files again.

      • digiKam 5.3.0 Open-Source Image Editor Released for Linux as an AppImage Bundle
        In the last minutes of November 7, 2016, the development team behind the open-source and cross-platform digiKam image editor, viewer and organizer software was proud to announce the release of digiKam 5.3.0.

        digiKam 5.3.0 is the third maintenance update to the stable 5.x series of the software project, bringing a month's worth of bug fixes and general improvements. However, the biggest new change in digiKam 5.3.0 is the availability of an AppImage bundle that allows Linux users to install the application in virtually any GNU/Linux distribution.

      • digiKam 5.3.0 is published...
        After a 3rd release 5.2.0 published more than one month ago, the digiKam team is proud to announce the new release 5.3.0 of digiKam Software Collection. This version introduces an important common solution to deploy the application under Linux using AppImage bundle.

        AppImage is an open-source project dedicated to provide a simple way to distribute portable software as compressed binary file, that standard user can run as well, without to install special dependencies. All is included into the bundle, as last Qt5 and KF5 frameworks. AppImage use Fuse file-system, which is de-compressed into a temporary directory to start the application. You don't need to install digiKam on your system to be able to use it. Better, you can use the official digiKam from your Linux distribution in parallel, and test the new version without any conflict with one used in production. This permit to quickly test a new release without to wait an official package dedicated for your Linux box. Another AppImage advantage is to be able to provide quickly a pre-release bundle to test last patches applied to source code, outside the releases plan.

    • GNOME Desktop/GTK

      • Epiphany 3.22.2 Web Browser Improves Password Form Autofill Handling, Adblocker
        As reported earlier, the GNOME development team is hard at work these days to bring us the second and last point release of the GNOME 3.22 desktop environment, versioned 3.22.2.

      • Evolution 3.22.2 Groupware Client Released for GNOME 3.22.2 with Many Fixes
        The GNOME Project is preparing to unleash the second and last maintenance update of the GNOME 3.22 desktop environment, which already started to land in the stable repositories of various GNU/Linux distributions.

      • Cinnamon 3.2 Desktop Environment Now Available with Support for Vertical Panels
        Today, November 7, 2016, Linux Mint leader Clement Lefebvre tagged the final release of the Cinnamon 3.2.0 desktop environment on the GitHub page of the project, from where users can download the source archive if they want an early taste.

      • Cinnamon 3.2 Desktop Arrives

      • Reaching more FEDORA and GNOME newcomers at UTP
        With Hack Space permitting on November 11, the next Friday at UTP (Universidad Tecnológica del Perú – Technology University of Perú), I am going to present the Free Software Projects: FEDORA and GNOME. The workshop will be focused in installation of FEDORA and then build the jhbuild of GNOME as a challenge for more than 8 hours. Then, the journey will start at 10:00 p.m. and it will finish at 7:00 a.m.

      • GXml 0.13.1 Released

        Now you can convert your GObject classes in XML nodes. This is, you can read and write XML trees directly to object classes’ properties, from basic types to complex like object properties, representing XML element’s attributes, to other child elements, while you can use collection of child nodes.

        This has been easiest to implement than GXml.SerializableObjectModel, which requires you to read an XML tree and then translate to your object properties. This should be slower than new GOM implementation included in this release.

      • About internet comments and aggressive communication

        That made me think about how we usually run conversations through internet. Because I work with GNOME, a thick skin naturally grew. I eventually have people yelling me “y u keep breaking stuff?” or “stop making this piece of crap” or even “ur product is bad, u offend me by releasing it” (and yes, they’re all real comments). After some time, this kind of thing becomes just background noise which we have to work with every day. I can only think that other contributors faced the same kind of top-notch treatment.

  • Distributions

  • Devices/Embedded

Free Software/Open Source

  • Six big projects that went open-source
    Making big software and hardware projects open-source is an increasingly popular thing to do, whether you’re a big company, a small company, or even the government. Here’s a sampling of the latest major projects to hit the open-source realm. Enjoy.

  • Using Apache Hadoop to Turn Big Data Into Insights
    The Apache Hadoop framework for distributed processing of large data sets is supported and used by a wide-ranging community -- including businesses, governments, academia, and technology vendors. According to John Mertic, Director of ODPi and the Open Mainframe Project at The Linux Foundation, Apache Hadoop provides these diverse users with a solid base and allows them to add on different pieces depending on what they want to accomplish.

  • AMD Stoney Ridge Support Lands In Coreboot
    It has been a long time since last seeing any new AMD support in Coreboot while that changed this past week with the arrival of the mainline Stoney Ridge support.

  • How to create an internal innersource community
    In recent years, we have seen more and more interest in a variance of open source known as innersource. Put simply, innersource is taking the principles of open source and bringing them inside the walls of an organization. As such, you build collaboration and community that may look and taste like open source, but in which all code and community is private within the walls of the organization.

    As a community strategy and leadership consultant, I work with many companies to help build their innersource communities. As such, I thought it could be fun to share some of the most important principles that map to most of my clients and beyond. This could be a helpful primer if you are considering exploring innersource inside your organization.

  • Open is a means, not a movement
    In the humble beginnings of the GNU and Linux projects, open source was a primitive and narrowly-defined idea. It applied only to programming, and was a largely legal designation that sought to guarantee that source code remained available to users even as others augmented it through subsequent contributions.

    Now, thirty years later, "open" is sweeping the enterprise. On top of "open source," we also have "open data," "open management," "open design," "open organizations,"—and even just "open," which we often take to imply something vague about a progressive policy.

  • Showing Code
    Which goes to show that terseness is a demanding constraint; I did not adequately state what I was trying to state in my attempt to limit it to a single tweet. And of course, that meant it became a discussion back and forth.

  • Open-source Sesame! Alibaba promises super-size magic for Java
    Online commerce giant Alibaba is among a crop of “new world” Java users seeking to shape the direction of both language and platform.

    Alibaba, one the world’s largest users of Java, has entered the race for election to the ruling executive committee (EC) of the Java Community Process (JCP). Jack Ma’s ecommerce giant joined the JCP only three months ago – in August.

    Also running for election to Java’s steering group are representatives of end user groups from China, Africa and Germany. One, the GreenTea Java User Group (JUG) in Shanghai, was founded and sponsored by technical staff from Alibaba.

  • Events

  • SaaS/Back End

  • Kubernetes


    • The Sorcerer's Code
      Richard Stallman, a software advocate affiliated with MIT, doesn’t really wear hats, but he’s been known to don tinfoil. In 2005, while attending a U.N. technology summit in Tunisia, he received a photo badge with a radio-frequency identification chip. Disgusted, he purchased a roll of aluminum foil, covered his badge, and handed sheets out to others. Tunisian security nearly blocked him from giving his talk. “By covering our badges,” he later noted, “we could prevent our movements within the summit, and our movements outside, from being scanned; we could also make a visible protest against the surveillance society that many governments are trying to impose.” A fellow delegate blogged that Stallman had “a legitimate gripe, handled with Richard’s usual highly visible, guileless, and absolutely unsubtle style of nonviolent protest.”

  • Public Services/Government

    • US launches website to share open-source software code
      The US government has just launched its latest website, with the aim of preventing the replication of code across government agencies in order to conserve valuable time and resources.

      The site, which was launched on Thursday, already contains almost 50 open-source projects from a number of government agencies. is the product of the Federal Source Code policy that was first announced in August by the White House.

      The site's goal is to provide new custom source code that can be reused across government agencies to cut down on replicating code which is a waste of government expenses and time. The public will also benefit as a result of since government agencies are required to make some of the software they create available under an open-source license.

  • Openness/Sharing/Collaboration

    • Open-source tool to put optogenetics in more labs
      The first low-cost, easy-to-use optogenetics hardware platform will let biologists who have little or no training in engineering or software design incorporate optogenetics testing in their labs.

      The Light Plate Apparatus (LPA), which researchers created in the lab of Jeffrey Tabor, assistant professor of bioengineering at Rice University, uses open-source hardware and software. The apparatus can deliver two independent light signals to each well in a standard 24-well plate and has sockets that accept LEDs of wavelengths ranging from blue to far red.

    • Open Data

      • Identify-org launched to better identify organisations through Open Data
        A group of Open Data standard bodies have launched Identify-org, a new initiative whose goal is to create an open codelist in Open Data to better identify organisations in the world.

        International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI), Open Contracting Partnership, 360Giving, Joined Up Data Standards (JUDS) and the Initiative for Open Ag Funding presented the initiative at the Open Data International Conference in Madrid in October.

    • Open Hardware/Modding

      • Lab creates open-source optogenetics hardware, software
        Nobody likes a cheater, but Rice University bioengineering graduate student Karl Gerhardt wants people to copy his answers. That's the whole point.

        Gerhardt and Rice colleagues have created the first low-cost, easy-to-use optogenetics hardware platform that biologists who have little or no training in engineering or software design can use to incorporate optogenetics testing in their labs.

  • Programming/Development

    • Building code faster and why recursive Make is so slow
      One of the most common reactions to Meson we have gotten has been that build time is dominated by the compiler, thus trying to make the build system faster is pointless. After all, Make just launches subproject processes and waits for them to finish, so there's nothing to be gained.

  • Standards/Consortia

    • Why didn’t PDF die like Flash?
      The British government’s Accessibility department has just published the results of a six-week online survey, quizzing users of assistive technology about what aspects of government publishing might need addressing. Many of the users, according to the section’s blog, find the government’s widespread use of the semi-open Adobe PDF format ‘hard to use’, asking for alternative content in HTML. The government is considering these complaints, but civil and municipal retrenchment into PDF-dependence does seem to make change unlikely…


  • Security

    • Security updates for Tuesday

    • Security advisories for Monday

    • Reproducible Builds: week 80 in Stretch cycle
      Patches to GCC to generate reproducible output independently of the build-path were submitted by Ximin Luo.

    • Security considerations with github continuous integration

      Continuous integration (CI) support in github is a very useful addition. Not only can you utilize existing services like Travis CI, you can utilize the github API and roll your own, which is exactly what we did for libStorageMgmt. LibStorageMgmt needs to run tests for hardware specific plugins, so we created our own tooling to hook up github and our hardware which is geographically located across the US. However, shortly after getting all this in place and working it became pretty obvious that we provided a nice attack vector…

    • The perfect cybercrime: selling fake followers to fake people
      Hackers are recruiting the internet of things into a botnet. But this time they’re not trying to take down the internet. They’re just using them to make fake social media accounts – which they can then sell to online narcissists to make an easy buck.

      Masarah-Cynthia Paquet-Clouston, a criminologist with the University of Montreal, and Olivier Bilodeau, a cybersecurity researcher at Montreal-based company GoSecure, have uncovered a large botnet that recruits everyday devices such as connected toasters, fridges or even your grandmother’s router to help commit social media fraud. They think that this stealthy, lucrative scheme is a glimpse into the future of low-level cybercrime.

    • Yet Another E-voting Machine Vulnerability Found
      We've been talking about the ridiculousness of e-voting machines for well over a decade. If a machine doesn't include a paper trail for backup, it's suspect. That's been the case since e-voting machines have been on the market, and many of us have been pointing this out all along. And the big e-voting companies have a long history of not really caring, even as their machines are shown to be vulnerable in a variety of ways. So it come as little to no surprise to find out that security firm Cylance has announced that it's found yet another set of e-voting vulnerabilities in the Sequoia AVC Edge Mk1 voting machine. Sequoia especially has a long history of buggy, faulty machines.

  • Defence/Aggression

    • Pundits think Islamic State’s Baghdadi is smart because he’s cruel. That’s nonsense
      Is Abu Bakr Baghdadi, the infamously cruel Islamic State leader, an unusually smart terrorist?

      Terrorism pundits seem to think the answer is “yes” — precisely because he’s turned cruelty into a sort of brand. He gained notoriety in the West for indiscriminately killing civilians and then directing his followers to brag about wanton bloodshed in “Jihadi John” beheading videos. Many would argue that, by leaving a photographic trail of bloodshed in his wake, Baghdadi has surpassed Osama bin Laden, the former Al Qaeda leader. In a Politico article from last year, for example, a prominent Brookings analyst exclaimed that Baghdadi “out-terrorized bin Laden,” who never fully grasped how well “violence and gore work.”

      I see things differently. I think the Islamic State CEO is an unusually stupid terrorist — precisely because he’s turned cruelty into a sort of brand.

      For a decade, political scientists have known that terrorist groups suffer when they exercise too little restraint by attacking civilians. Civilian attacks carry substantial downside risks by strengthening the resolve of target countries, eroding their confidence in negotiations, lowering the odds of government concessions, reducing popular support for the group and, all in all, expediting its demise.

    • Long-range projectiles for Navy's newest ship too expensive to shoot
      ...Navy is canceling production of the LRLAP because of an $800,000-per-shot price tag -- more than 10 times the original projected cost. By comparison, the nuclear-capable Tomahawk cruise missile costs approximately $1 million per shot, while the M712 Copperhead laser-guided 155-millimeter projectile and M982 Excalibur GPS-guided rounds cost less than $70,000 per shot. Traditional Navy 5-inch shells cost no more than a few hundred dollars each.

  • Environment/Energy/Wildlife/Nature

    • Vancouver Considers Abandoning Parts of the Coast Because of Climate Change
      Vancouver prides itself on being a coastal city, nestled between the Rocky Mountains and the Pacific. Like every other part of the world, it’s under threat from climate change, as warming temperatures cause sea levels to creep ever-higher. The city is looking at many options to hold back the rising water—and for the first time, retreat from the coast is one of them.

      This week, Vancouver officials put out a report laying out plenty of options to deal with sea level rise, including barriers, dykes, and seawalls. But it also suggests that, at least in some parts of the city, they may want to consider just getting people out of the way. The option of retreat from the coast is on the table in Vancouver, and other cities might soon follow.

    • Palm oil's green body comes under fire from activists
      Some activist groups are withdrawing support for the palm oil body that provides sustainability certificates for the industry, saying it is biased toward producers and its complaints panel is flawed.

      Aidenvironment, an Amsterdam-based green group, could become the latest to cut ties with the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) over what it calls poor handling of a complaint against major palm producer IOI Group.

      RSPO -- a body of palm producers, consumer companies, and activist groups -- has long faced criticism for weak enforcement standards. Some faith was restored earlier this year when RSPO suspended IOI's certificates, which then dissipated when RSPO revoked the suspension four months later.

      A withdrawal by green groups, long seen as the conscience of the RSPO, could undermine the credibility of the industry body, especially for consumer manufacturing companies under pressure globally to ensure they have a sustainable supply chain.

    • Poaching is on the rise — most illegal ivory comes from recently killed elephants
      Almost all the world’s illegal ivory comes from elephants that have been recently killed, researchers say. The new study shows that seized ivory isn’t coming from old stockpiles, but from African elephants that have been poached less than three years before the tusks were seized. That means that poaching — one of the biggest threats to elephants — is widespread and may be a bigger problem than we think.

    • Elephant poachers are hard at work in Africa, and carbon dating proves it
      Elephant poaching is alive and well — and the elephants are not. A team of scientists examining seized shipments of elephant tusks from Africa have found that the vast majority of the ivory came from elephants that died within the last three years.

      The sobering results, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, reveal that the killing of elephants for their ivory is continuing at a disturbing pace — even as elephant populations across the continent are in sharp decline.

      While poaching had been easing for several years, it has returned with a vengeance in the last decade or so, said lead author Thure Cerling, a geochemist at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City. Central African forest elephants have fallen by an estimated 62% from 2002 to 2011. At the Selous Wildlife Reserve in Tanzania, savanna elephants have declined 66% from 2009 to 2013.

      “There’s been a staggering rate of elephant loss every year,” Cerling said.

    • Dakota Access Pipeline CEO Kelcy Warren Should Face the Music
      President Barack Obama foreshadowed more complications for the Dakota Access pipeline this week, as he told an interviewer that “right now the Army Corps is examining whether there are ways to reroute this pipeline.” With hundreds arrested in recent weeks at the Standoff at Standing Rock, North Dakota, the movement to halt construction of this 1,200-mile, $3.8 billion oil pipeline only builds. Musicians are increasingly joining the fray, striking an unexpected chord: pressuring oil billionaire Kelcy Warren, CEO of Energy Transfer Partners, which owns the pipeline. Warren also owns a small music label and recording company, and is the founder and driving force behind the Cherokee Creek Music Festival in Texas. Many musicians, including folk/rock legend Jackson Browne, are banding together to confront Warren and help stop the pipeline.

      In a statement published in September by Indian Country Today Media Network, Jackson Browne wrote: “I met Kelcy Warren on one occasion, when I played at the Cherokee Creek Music Festival, held at his ranch. Later his company, Music Road Records, produced an album of my songs. Though I was honored by the ‘tribute’ and think highly of the versions—which were done by some of my favorite singers and songwriters, I had nothing to do with producing the recordings or deciding who would be on it.”

  • Finance

    • We need a Brexit deal that heals the north-south divide
      It’s official. The north-south divide in Britain is now wider than at any time since the beginning of the industrial revolution – wider than when Charles Dickens was writing about Victorian squalor, and wider than in the depression years of the 1930s, when George Orwell exposed the grinding poverty of northern England in The Road to Wigan Pier.

      Remarkable new evidence from a study by the academic Philip McCann, The UK Regional-National Economic Problem, shows that while economic output per head, measured by gross value added, is near €£43,000 a year in London – and as high as €£135,000 in inner west London – almost half the UK population lives, in regions where output per head is below €£22,325.

      Indeed the regional divide is so vast that, at €£13,500 per person, economic output in Gwent, Wales, is a tenth that of one of the wealthiest part of London; and in the Tees and Welsh valleys it has now fallen below that of Lithuania, Slovenia and Slovakia.

  • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

    • Affinity Interviews Jill Stein!

    • Voters Express Disgust Over U.S. Politics in New Times/CBS Poll
      An overwhelming majority of voters are disgusted by the state of American politics, and many harbor doubts that either major-party nominee can unite the country after a historically ugly presidential campaign, according to the final pre-election New York Times/CBS News Poll.

      In a grim preview of the discontent that may cloud at least the outset of the next president’s term, Hillary Clinton and Donald J. Trump are seen by a majority of voters as unlikely to bring the country back together after this bitter election season.

      With more than eight in 10 voters saying the campaign has left them repulsed rather than excited, the rising toxicity threatens the ultimate victor. Mrs. Clinton, the Democratic candidate, and Mr. Trump, the Republican nominee, are seen as dishonest and viewed unfavorably by a majority of voters.

    • Wikileaks releases second batch on Election Eve

    • As Our Revolution’s Former Electoral Manager, This Is How We Keep President Clinton Accountable
      With the right combination of strategies, we can make Bernie Sanders the most powerful senator in the country and keep President Hillary Clinton accountable to the progressive movement. Our best opportunity to accomplish this is right around the corner.

      The Huffington Post points out that Clinton leads in a greater proportion of polls than Obama did in 2008 and 2012. Their model gives Clinton an overwhelming 98.2 percent chance of victory. Clinton’s lead is so substantial that she could lose all seven swing states, a highly improbable outcome, and still have enough electoral votes tucked away in safe states to win the election. In short, Hillary Clinton will be our next president.

      Instead of staying home or turning Clinton’s big lead into a landslide, we should invest our votes into getting the most progressive candidate in the race, Dr. Jill Stein, to the major electoral threshold of 5 percent. Success will qualify the Green Party for official national party status, along with a simplified path to ballot access and about $10 million dollars in federal campaign funds for the next presidential election.

    • EMAILS: Clinton Sent Classified Info To Chelsea After UN Climate Talks
      Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton sent her daughter an email after the conclusion of a United Nations climate summit that had information later deemed classified by the Department of State.

      Clinton sent an email to her daughter, Chelsea, two days after she and President Barack Obama tried to negotiate an international global warming agreement at Copenhagen in 2009. The email was sent to Chelsea’s alias email account under the name, “Diane Reynolds.”

      Clinton forwarded Chelsea a Dec. 19, 2009 email from top State Department officials and Obama’s global warming “czar” Carol Browner — a long-time Clinton ally — according to emails released by the State Department Friday.

    • WikiLeaks releases election day batch from Clinton campaign chair
      WikiLeaks has released its 35th batch of emails from the hacked account of Hillary Clinton’s campaign chair, John Podesta, as Americans go to the polls in the presidential election.

    • The 44 Most Damning Stories From WikiLeaks
      WikiLeaks has published tens of thousands of Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta’s emails. This is what The Daily Caller believes are the most important findings from them.

      They expose a corrupt press, Clinton Foundation play for play, cronyism, and the Clintons’ real thoughts on the issues.

    • Bill Clinton branded Jeremy Corbyn 'maddest person in the room', leaked speech reveals
      Bill Clinton branded Labour’s Jeremy Corbyn the "maddest person in the room" in a speech he gave explaining the resurgence of left-wing politics in Europe and America.

      Documents released by Wikileaks show the former President joked that when Mr Corbyn won his leadership contest, it appeared Labour had just "got a guy off the street" to run the party.

    • WikiLeaks: Mook Frantic Over Appearance of TPP Support
      It likely will not make a difference in the outcome of today’s presidential election, but WikiLeaks offered more evidence Tuesday that even campaign staff for Democrat Hillary Clinton couldn’t follow her shifting position on trade.

      Clinton had studiously avoided taking a public position on the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership, which her Democratic primary opponents had been bashing with gusto. On June 14 of last year, at a campaign rally in Iowa, she dipped her toe in the water.

    • Statement by Julian Assange on U.S. Presidential Election
      In recent months, WikiLeaks and I personally have come under enormous pressure to stop publishing what the Clinton campaign says about itself to itself. That pressure has come from the campaign's allies, including the Obama administration, and from liberals who are anxious about who will be elected U.S. president.

    • The Stakes Are Higher Than You Realize

      In one of the more memorable riffs of the 2016 election, President Barack Obama recently said "My name may not be on the ballot, but our progress is on the ballot. Tolerance is on the ballot. Democracy is on the ballot. Justice is on the ballot. Good schools are on the ballot. Ending mass incarceration – that's on the ballot right now!"

      I increasingly fear that The West is on the ballot too.

      What's the significance of the FBI's intervention in these last days of the U.S. election campaign, in the case against Hillary Clinton?

    • A Tale of Three Foundations: Carter, Clinton and Trump
      Seen the latest front-page Jimmy Carter Center scandal? Hear about the six figure fees speaking former president Jimmy Carter pulls in from shady companies and foreign governments? An oil painting of himself he bought with charity money? Maybe not.

      Take a moment to Google Jimmy Carter. Now do the same for Bill Clinton. The search results tell the tale of two former presidents, one determined to use his status honorably, the other seeking exploitation for personal benefit. And then throw in Donald Trump, who of course wants to someday be a former president. Each man has his own charitable foundation. Let’s compare them.

      Three charitable organizations enter, only one emerges with honor. Let’s do this!

  • Censorship/Free Speech

    • Following scare at Trump rally, life is now different for protester
      Life was fairly normal for Austyn Crites until Saturday night.

      The 33-year-old, Eagle Scout and high-altitude balloon inventor was by his own account a fairly average guy. He wasn’t famous — or infamous — and his face certainly wasn’t plastered all over international media.

      That is, until the Donald Trump rally on Saturday in Reno.

  • Privacy/Surveillance

    • Thinking Like an Intelligence Officer: Anthony Weiner and Russian Spies
      There are many reasons why Federal Bureau of Investigation Director James Comey is interested in the emails on Anthony Weiner’s home computer, emails which may include United States government information pertinent to Hillary Clinton or those communicating with her.

      The majority of those reasons for Comey’s involvement, for good or for bad depending on your political position, have been laid out across the media spectrum.

      But there may be one more reason not yet discussed. Since we seem to be spending so much time this election cycle on the Russians this year, let’s think like Russian intelligence officers. Comey may be looking at an intelligence operation.
    • If GCHQ says it then it must be right, right?
      What happens if GCHQ advice is questionable or goes directly against the direction the majority of industry is heading?

    • France wants a 'monster' database of citizens' info
      The French government's fairly discreet plan to create a massive database containing personal information of the country's population has encountered gremlins in the form of growing opposition.

      French government plans to create a new database containing details of almost the entire population suffered fresh blows on Monday as criticism grew of the controversial project.

      The Socialist government announced a decree to create the database, which would contain personal information of 60 million people, on a public holiday weekend at the end of October.

      It has led to fears that hackers might target the information as well as anxiety that so much personal data could be misused in the future by the security forces or other government agencies.
    • Can FBI review 650,000 emails in nine days? Absolutely, says Edward Snowden
      GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump and his supporters are questioning whether the FBI could have sifted through 650,000 emails quickly enough to clear his Democratic rival, Hillary Clinton, just nine days after they were discovered.

      But the FBI and cybersecurity experts say it can be done with database scanning software – and one of those experts is none other than Edward Snowden, the fugitive whistleblower who’s hoping to get a presidential pardon.

      The debate unfolded today in the wake of FBI Director James Comey’s announcement that a search through a laptop used by Clinton aide Huma Abedin turned up nothing to change “our conclusions that we expressed in July with respect to Secretary Clinton.”

    • Disable Nvidia Telemetry tracking on Windows
      Telemetry -- read tracking -- seems to be everywhere these days. Microsoft pushes it on Windows, and web and software companies use it as well.

      While there is certainly some benefit to it on a larger scale, as it may enable these companies to identify broader issues, it is undesirable from a user perspective.

      Part of that comes from the fact that companies fail to disclose what is being collected and how data is stored and handled once it leaves the user system.

  • Civil Rights/Policing

    • Indonesia Police Question Christian Politician in Blasphemy Case
      Police questioned the most prominent Christian politician in this predominantly Muslim country on Monday as they consider a blasphemy charge against him, just three months ahead of an election where he is the leading candidate.

    • 'Persecuted' family forced to flee Manningham home as threats escalate
      Mr Hussain converted to Christianity 20 years ago, but says in recent years he has been subjected to harassment and violence by sections of the Islamic community.

      “This extreme persecution by certain people in the Muslim community because we are converts has broken us as a family,” he said.

      “We are fragmented and I do not know how we will recover from this. We haven’t functioned properly for years."

      He said "serious questions" needed to be answered.

      Last year, Mr Hussain was hospitalised after his kneecap was smashed and his hand broken during an attack outside his home in St Paul’s Road, Manningham.

      Two hooded men, one armed with a pick-axe handle, assaulted him in a vicious attack caught on CCTV.

    • Officials: SA cop fired for attempting to feed fecal sandwich to homeless person
      An officer from the San Antonio Police Department has been fired for allegedly attempting to feed a fecal sandwich to a homeless person, several sources have confirmed.

      The City Council was briefed on the matter during a private session Thursday, sources said. The officer reportedly placed fecal matter between two pieces of bread and gave it to a homeless person.

      “This was a vile and disgusting act that violates our guiding principles of ‘treating all with integrity, compassion, fairness and respect,’ Chief William McManus said in a prepared statement. “The fact that his fellow officers were so disgusted with his actions that they reported him to Internal Affairs demonstrates that this type of behavior will never be tolerated. The action of this one former officer in no way reflects the actions of all the other good men and women who respectfully serve this community.”

    • One woman’s brush with Sharia courts in the UK: "It ruined my life forever"
      The UK government is conducting an inquiry into the operation of Sharia courts which is being boycotted by a number of women’s organisations because its remit is too narrow, and the panel of judges is not seen as ‘independent’ enough.

      Parallel to this, the Home Affairs Committee has also launched an inquiry into whether the principles of Sharia are compatible with British law.

      On 7 November, there will be a public seminar on "Sharia Law, Legal Pluralism and Access to Justice" 7-9pm at Committee Room 12 at the Houses of Parliament. Below, we publish the story of a woman Shagufta (not her real name) who spoke to the campaign group, One Law for All, and described how a brush with the Sharia courts ruined her life forever.

      I am a practising Muslim. My faith is central to who I am. I was born in 1947 in Pakistan and joined my husband in the UK in 1965. I am from a middle-class Pakistani family and found life in England hard. It was a huge culture shock. We settled in the north of England. I supported my husband with his business interests and eventually had my own business running a cookery school and a halal food company. I had six daughters and a son.

    • Hong Kong pro-democracy politicians banned by China as crisis grows

      Hong Kong is facing a severe political crisis after China barred two pro-independence politicians from the city’s legislature.

      In a highly controversial move, Beijing said Yau Wai-ching and Sixtus “Baggio” Leung would not be able to hold office, striking a blow to the burgeoning movement calling for greater autonomy from the mainland.

      The ruling, which amounts to Beijing’s most direct intervention in the territory’s legal system since the 1997 handover to Chinese rule, is expected to spark renewed street protests in the former British colony.

    • Sweden now allowing US Homeland Security officers at Stockholm airport, permanently and with access to own weapons
      In brief: Sweden is now allowing US Homeland Security to station officers at Stockholm airport on a permanent basis, and with access to their own weapons. The US “custom and security controls” in Swedish soil are supposed to stop suspected terrorists, which include “cyber-terrorists”, and other individuals suspected of criminal-behaviour – who appear on lists which may also include whistle-blowers and their publicists, who may be considered to have “stolen information”. The Department of Homeland Security declared in 2013 that “the unlawful disclosure of classified information by WikiLeaks in the summer of 2010 has rightfully renewed the Department’s focus on risk management.”

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