...and then so, no one is forced to do anything. Why would RMS, or anyone else, bellyache, when you are not forced to use Linux, or some other software you don't agree with? Why whine about it, why not just go write an ideologically correct clone?
An anonymous reader sends us a link to a report in The Age about an Australian resident, who had never set foot in the US and broke US intellectual-property laws in Australia, being extradited to the US to face trial. Hew Raymond Griffiths pleaded guilty in Virginia to overseeing all aspects of the operation of the group Drink Or Die, which cracked copy-protected software and media products and distributed them for free. He faces up to 10 years in a US jail and half a million dollars in fines.
Bullied writes "Take Two has tired of Jack Thompson's frivolous lawsuits and has filed a federal lawsuit in the Southern District of Florida to prevent him from filing any more 'nuisance' lawsuits. 'Take Two argues that the lawsuits violate its First Amendment rights to free expression, but it also claims that the suits are so vague as to be unconstitutional. "This unconstitutional vagueness will have a chilling effect on Plaintiff as well as Plaintiff's customers," says the company. "Plaintiff's distributors likely will respond to the uncertainty and fear of penalties by withholding Plaintiff's video games from the public."' Take Two also cites the disruptive effect Thompson's suits have on its retail partners."
CexpTretical writes "The accumulation and focusing of knowledge may be the noblest use or purpose of the internet. There are plenty of open or unsolved problems left for this generation. Why not spend some of your time in the dark of this winter working on one of the big problems facing humanity? Open problems exists in almost every field of study. Wikipedia maintains a small list of them and at least one international group called the Union of International Associations maintains a database of open problems." Which problem do you want to see cracked first? Are you already working on one of these big issues?
DreadfulGrape writes "ESPN.com reports on how video iPods are being used increasingly by baseball players to study opponents' game footage. In fact, Houston Astros' pitcher Jason Jennings credits the device with improving his game last summer." Jennings says, "Eventually, more than two-thirds of the roster had piled on and turned this team into baseball's official iSquad. Every player gets his own custom set of videos loaded onto his personal iPod, sorted by date, hitter, pitcher and opponent — and updated every week or so."
Michi writes "Brady Forrest at O'Reilly Radar reports that Google has deprecated their SOAP API; they aren't giving out any new SOAP Search API keys. Nelson Minar (the original author of the Google SOAP API) argues that this move is motivated by business reasons rather than technical ones. Does this mark the beginning of the end for SOAP or for ubiquitous middleware in general?" Forrest's post quotes developer Paul Bausch: "This is such a bad move because the Google API was the canonical example of how web services work. Not only is Google Hacks based on this API, but hundreds of other books and online examples use the Google API to show how to incorporate content from another site into a 3rd party application."
Dak RIT writes "Market share data for the first month of Microsoft's Zune sales is now available, and appears to confirm that after the initial hype, sales have fallen off dramatically. Microsoft came in fourth for sales during the month of November with only 1.9% of the market. Apple remained unchanged at 62.2%, and SanDisk even managed to increase to 18.4% (looks like the Zune might not even be able to compete with the rest of the market, let alone the iPod). The one surprise though is that the brown Zune is apparently not only being bought, but more popular than the white model."
PetManimal writes "Mac Daniels of the Boston Globe weighed in on a prickly debate involving the updated local mass transit website. The Globe's advice to one complainer named 'derspatchel': Stop using Opera. Derspatchel's response is to go medieval on Daniels' ass, and ask the question: Why should Opera users give up their browser? Quoting: 'I don't give two whoops about the "percentage of the Internet population" or whatever. I don't care if a website works on someone else's choice of browser; I care if it works or not on my choice of browser. It's a modern browser, it's in active development, and it's free. Once dev stops on the Opera browser and the last version becomes outdated and unable to support newer Web innovations, then I'll "stop using it." How's that, Chuckles?'" After a day the transit authority took the new site offline to "improve performance," reverting to the old version.
LividBlivet writes, "The Senate Judiciary Committee approved a bill that not only authorizes, but extends, US warrentless wiretapping. No accountability. No oversight. No definition of 'terrorist.' No record of who voted for what. Great way to devolve a democratic republic into a fascist theocracy. Me worried? Yea." Here is the text of SB2453, the National Security Surveillance Act (PDF). Confusingly, the committee also voted out two other bills, one of which "all but declares the warrantless wiretapping illegal," according to Wired.
An anonymous reader writes to mention something of an ongoing controversy over a recent Craigslist prank. Waxy.org has the full details: "On Monday, a Seattle web developer named Jason Fortuny started his own Craigslist experiment. The goal: 'Posing as a submissive woman looking for an aggressive dom, how many responses can we get in 24 hours?' He took the text and photo from a sexually explicit ad in another area, reposted it to Craigslist Seattle, and waited for the responses to roll in ... '178 responses, with 145 photos of men in various states of undress. Responses include full e-mail addresses (both personal and business addresses), names, and in some cases IM screen names and telephone numbers.' In a staggering move, he then published every single response, unedited and uncensored, with all photos and personal information to Encyclopedia Dramatica." The Wired blog 27B Stroke 6 has analysis of the prank, which author Ryan Singel views as 'sociopathic'. He then follows that up with responses to comments from his analysis, with further exploration of the weighty issues this juvenile prank has brought up.
An anonymous reader writes "The Guardian Unlimited has a provocative article on the recent decline in iPod sales: 'Analysts warn that the iPod has passed its peak. From its launch five years ago its sales graph showed a consistent upward curve, culminating in a period around last Christmas that saw a record 14 million sold. But sales fell to 8.5 million in the following quarter, and down to 8.1 million in the most recent three-month period. Wall Street is reportedly starting to worry that the bubble will burst.'"
dbialac writes, "Codeweavers, one of the major players in the Wine Project, have released their first beta of CrossOver for Mac. I've downloaded it and played around with it and though there are glitches, it does seem to run programs' standard features quite well."