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+ - U.S. hastens offshore wind developments with new l->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "The United States Department of the Interior aims to implement a more efficient and coordinated permitting process for offshore wind to accelerate the development of projects along the Atlantic coast.

The Smart from the Start initiative for the Atlantic Outer Continental Shelf will facilitate siting, leasing and construction of new projects, which will help developers go through the permitting process without the burden of red tape, said interior secretary Ken Salazar."

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+ - My GPL code has been... patented! 4

Submitted by ttsiod
ttsiod (881575) writes "Back in 2001, I coded HeapCheck, a GPL library for Windows (inspired by ElectricFence) that detected invalid read/write accesses on any heap allocations at runtime — thus greatly helping my debugging sessions. I published it on my site, and got a few users who were kind enough to thank me — a Serbian programmer even sent me 250$ as a thank you (I still have his mails). After a few years, Microsoft included very similar technology in the operating system itself, calling it PageHeap. I had more or less forgotten these stuff, since for the last 7 years I've been coding for UNIX/Linux, where valgrind superseeded Efence/dmalloc/etc. Imagine my surprise, when yesterday, Googling for references to my site, I found out that the technology I implemented, of runtime detection of invalid heap accesses, has been patented in the States, and to add insult to injury, even mentions my site (via a non-working link to an old version of my page) in the patent references! After the necessary "WTFs" and "bloody hells" I thought this merrits (a) a Slashdotting, and (b) a set of honest questions: what should I do about this? I am not an American citizen, but the "inventors" of this technology (see their names in the top of the patent) have apparently succeeded in passing this ludicrous patent in the States. If my code doesn't count as prior art, Bruce Perens's Efence (which I clearly state my code was inspired from) is at least 12 years prior! Suggestions/cursing patent trolls most welcome."

+ - UK law body targets RIAA style settlement letters->

Submitted by PerformanceDude
PerformanceDude (1798324) writes "The Register reports that a major UK law firm knew it sometimes had no reliable evidence of unlawful filesharing when it demanded hundreds of pounds damages from internet users, according to the solicitors' watchdog.

London-based Davenport Lyons threatened thousands of people with legal action for alleged copyright infringement between 2006 and 2009. They were told that by quickly paying around £500 damages, plus costs, they could avoid court.

Following complaints to the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA), Davenport Lyons now stands accused of deliberately ignoring concerns over the standard of its evidence."

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Government

+ - Cybersecurity bill gives DHS power to punish tech ->

Submitted by suraj.sun
suraj.sun (1348507) writes "Cybersecurity bill gives DHS power to punish tech firms:

Democratic politicians are proposing a novel approach to cybersecurity: fine technology companies $100,000 a day unless they comply with directives imposed by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

Legislation introduced this week would allow DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano to levy those and other civil penalties on noncompliant companies that the government deems "critical," a broad term that could sweep in Web firms, broadband providers, and even software companies and search engines.

"This bill will make our nation more secure and better positions DHS--the 'focal point for the security of cyberspace'--to fulfill its critical homeland security mission," said Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.), the chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee.

CNET News: http://news.cnet.com/8301-13578_3-20023464-38.html"

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Censorship

Oregon Senator Seeks To Block COICA 81

Posted by Soulskill
from the standing-up dept.
jfruhlinger writes "The COICA copyright bill may have sailed through committee, but that doesn't mean it's a done deal. Senator Ron Wyden of Oregon, calling it the 'wrong medicine' to block copyright violations, is threatening to put a hold on the bill, which would block its adoption through at least the end of the year."
The Military

+ - China demonstrates 25+ unmanned aerial vehicles

Submitted by overThruster
overThruster (58843) writes "The Wall Street Journal and Defense News report that China had more than 25 different unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) on display at the Zhuhai Airshow. In addition to a jet powered UAV that is potentially faster than U.S. made drones such as the Predator and Reaper, the Chinese have developed an unmanned "thopter" for surveillance.
"ASN showed off 10 different UAVs, including the new ASN-211 Flapping Wing Aircraft System, which simulates a bird in flight. The prototype on display has a take-off weight of only 220 grams with a maximum speed of six-to-10 meters a second and an altitude ranging from 20-200 meters. A spokesperson said the micro-UAV would mainly be used for low-altitude reconnaissance for troops in the field.""
Censorship

+ - Oregon Senator seeks to block COICA->

Submitted by jfruhlinger
jfruhlinger (470035) writes "The COICA copyright bill may have sailed through committee, but that doesn't mean that it's a done deal. Senator Ron Wyden of Oregon, calling the "wrong medicine" to block copyright violations, is threatening to put a hold on the bill, which would block its adoption through at least the end of the year."
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+ - Bruce Schneier Vs. The TSA->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Bruce Schneier has posted a huge recap of the TSA controversy, including more information about the lawsuit he joined to ban them. There's too much news to summarize, but it covers everything from Penn of Penn & Teller and Dave Barry's grope stories, other Israeli experts who say this isn't needed and hasn't ever stopped a bomb, the four-year-old girl who was traumatized by being groped and much, much more."
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Privacy

+ - Use of stolen SSN wasn’t criminal, court rul->

Submitted by netbuzz
netbuzz (955038) writes "The Colorado Supreme Court by a vote of 4-3 recently overturned the conviction of a man who used a woman’s Social Security number to apply for a car loan. The action did not constitute criminal impersonation, ruled the court’s majority, because the man provided the auto dealership with his real name, address and place of employment, in addition to the stolen Social Security number. It should come as no surprise that privacy experts are taking exception to the majority’s position."
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Education

+ - For-Profit University 'Owns' DHS STEM Program

Submitted by theodp
theodp (442580) writes "Citing Bill Gates' Congressional testimony, the Department of Homeland Security enacted a controversial 'emergency' rule in 2008 to allow foreign students who earn degrees in science, technology, engineering or math (STEM) in the U.S. to work for American employers for 29 months of Optional Practical Training (OPT) without the need for an H-1B visa. By doing so, explained DHS chief Michael Chertoff, he was 'giving U.S. companies a competitive advantage in the world economy.' Microsoft applauded the move, saying the program would allow U.S. companies to recruit and retain the 'best' science and tech students educated at the top U.S. universities. A legal challenge to the action was mounted, but the U.S. Supreme Court denied a request to review the case in April after receiving a DHS brief reiterating that 'the public interest would be disserved' without the program. Noticeably absent from the DHS brief, however, were any details on the two-year old program's participants. But now, a Computerworld report on How the 'Tech Worker Visa' is Remaking IT in America suggests why the agency may have been less-than-eager to have any details emerge. Not only is the DHS STEM program dominated by for-profit Stratford University and the private University of Bridgeport (the two accounted for 8% of all STEM extension requests), it's also been embraced by IT outsourcing and offshoring companies — hardly how Microsoft and DHS sold the program to the public and the Courts. More details on the 20,000 OPT STEM extension requests filed since mid-2008 can be found in Computerworld's interactive database."

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