eldavojohn writes "According to AfterDawn, Google has given app makers the option to use a license server as DRM to ensure the user has paid for an app before they can download it. Reportedly, the Market app will communicate with a Google license server using RSA encryption. It is important to note this is only available for non-free apps (built with SDK 1.5 and later), and it was instituted to provide a better solution to the old and widely criticized copy protection scheme that was susceptible to Android app piracy (like sideloading). For better or for worse, Android's Marketplace appears to now have an optional, phone-home form of DRM." Following news of the new licensing service, Hexage Ltd, makers of a popular Android game called Radiant, released the data they had collected on piracy of Radiant over a 10-month period beginning last October. A series of charts shows total users, paid users and the piracy rate, by region.
angry tapir writes "Oracle has announced that rival hardware vendors Dell and Hewlett-Packard intend to certify and resell its Solaris and Enterprise Linux operating systems as well as Oracle VM on their x86 servers. The announcement 'demonstrates Oracle's commitment to openness,' company co-president Charles Phillips said in a statement."
ArbiterOne writes "The 11th Annual System Administrator Appreciation Day is today. Celebrated worldwide on the last Friday of July, this day honors those who fight in the digital trenches to keep the Net alive. OpenDNS offers a way to remind your boss about the holiday, while another blogger shares war stories. The startup Ksplice has created an homage to these heroes in the style of Choose Your Own Adventure." Reader Netbuzz submits a sobering look at the profession from Network World, which notes, "In the past year, [sysadmins'] pay has dropped, and more of their positions are being farmed out to temporary workers."
RTFA. They did. They started their own company.
An anonymous reader writes "Programmers who design and code algorithms for investment banking are unhappy with their salaries. Many of them receive a low 6-figure salary whereas their bosses — who manipulate these algorithms and execute the trades — often earn millions. One such anonymous programmer points out that he was paid $150,000 per year, whereas the software he wrote was generating $100,000 per day."
scurtis writes "An insider has told eWEEK Europe that some Internet service providers in the UK only sign-up customers who can be guaranteed a good service, in order to improve average speed claims. The revelation comes after the regulator Ofcom criticised broadband service providers earlier this week for not delivering the speeds promised to consumers. Meanwhile, TalkTalk's chairman Charles Dunstone has argued that Ofcom could be doing a lot more to push BT — as the operator of the copper infrastructure — to improve maintenance of the lines and its communication with fellow service providers."
suraj.sun writes with this excerpt from Ars Technica: "If you need a reminder of just how big China is—and just how important the Internet has become there—consider this stat: between them, two Chinese ISPs serve 20 percent of all broadband subscribers in the entire world and both companies continue to grow, even as growth slows significantly in more developed markets. Every other ISP trails dramatically. Japan's NTT comes in third with 17 million subscribers, and all US providers are smaller still. 'The gap between the top two operators and the world's remaining broadband service providers will continue to grow rapidly,' said TeleGeography Research Director Tania Harvey. 'Aside from the two Chinese companies, all of the top ten broadband ISPs operate in mature markets, with high levels of broadband penetration and rapidly slowing subscriber growth.'"
spidweb writes "One Indie developer has written a nuanced article on a how software piracy affects him, approaching the issue from the opposite direction. He lists the ways in which the widespread piracy of PC games helps him. From the article: 'You don't get everything you want in this world. You can get piles of cool stuff for free. Or you can be an honorable, ethical being. You don't get both. Most of the time. Because, when I'm being honest with myself, which happens sometimes, I have to admit that piracy is not an absolute evil. That I do get things out of it, even when I'm the one being ripped off.' The article also tries to find a middle ground between the Piracy-Is-Always-Bad and Piracy-Is-Just-Fine sides of the argument that might enable single-player PC games to continue to exist."
An anonymous reader writes "KDE SC 4.5 is about to be released and KDE SC 4.6 is being discussed. However, Martin Graesslin has revealed some details about what they are planning for KDE 4.7. According to Martin's blog post, they are looking at OpenGL 3.0 to provide the compositing effects in KDE SC 4.7. OpenGL 3.0 provides support for frame buffer objects, hardware instancing, vertex array objects, and sRGB framebuffers."
An anonymous reader writes with this excerpt from Wired about another entry in the ongoing quest for low-tech-high-tech educational tools to take advantage of distributed knowledge: "The Humane Reader, a device designed by computer consultant Braddock Gaskill, takes two 8-bit microcontrollers and packages them in a 'classic style console' that connects to a TV. The device includes an optional keyboard, a micro-SD Card reader and a composite video output. It uses a standard micro-USB cellphone charger for power. In all, it can hold the equivalent of 5,000 books, including an offline version of Wikipedia, and requires no internet connection. The Reader will cost $20 when 10,000 or more of it are manufactured. Without that kind of volume, each Reader will cost about $35."
olsmeister writes "It appears the White House would like to make it easier for the FBI to obtain records of a person's internet activities without a court order to do so, via the use of an NSL. While they have been able to do this for a long time, it may expand the type of information able to be gathered without a court order to include things like web browsing histories."
js_sebastian writes "According to an article on the New York Times, a historical cross-over has occurred because of the declining costs of solar vs. the increasing costs of nuclear energy: solar, hardly the cheapest of renewable technologies, is now cheaper than nuclear, at around 16 cents per kilowatt hour. Furthermore, the NY Times reports that financial markets will not finance the construction of nuclear power plants unless the risk of default (which is historically as high as 50 percent for the nuclear industry) is externalized to someone else through federal loan guarantees or ratepayer funding. The bottom line seems to be that nuclear is simply not competitive, and the push from the US government to subsidize it seems to be forcing the wrong choice on the market."
Earlier this week, there were reports that large numbers of Modern Warfare 2 players on Steam were getting erroneously banned by Valve's Anti-Cheat software. While such claims are usually best taken with a grain of salt, the quantity and suddenness caused speculation that Valve's software wasn't operating correctly. A few days later, Valve president Gabe Newell sent out an email acknowledging that roughly 12,000 players had been inappropriately banned over the preceding two weeks. "The problem was that Steam would fail a signature check between the disk version of a DLL and a latent memory version. This was caused by a combination of conditions occurring while Steam was updating the disk image of a game." Valve reversed the bans and gave free copies of Left 4 Dead 2 to everyone who was affected.
crabel writes "In Java 1.6.0_21, the company field was changed from 'Sun Microsystems, Inc' to 'Oracle.' Apparently not the best idea, because some applications depend on that field to identify the virtual machine. All Eclipse versions since 3.3 (released 2007) until and including the recent Helios release (2010) have been reported to crash with an OutOfMemoryError due to this change. This is particularly funny since the update is deployed through automatic update and suddenly applications cease to work."
SonicSpike links to what he calls "a transparent look at some statistics released by a small town's red-light camera program," writing "Specifically, in the last fiscal quarter, 7,213 incidents were recorded, 2,673 incidents were rejected by the reviewing officer, and 662 incidents were not processed due to technical issues or lack of information. All in all 3,878 citations were issued between April 1 — June 30 in a town of 17,000 residents. Interestingly enough there are two nearby cities claiming that individuals 'have no presumption of innocence' when accused by the red light cameras." Fines for no-harm-no-foul rolling stops bug me, and remind me of Gary Lauder's suggestion to merge stop signs and yield signs.