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Submission + - Gnome 3.8 Takes a Step Backwards with Classic Mode (linuxadvocates.com) 1

An anonymous reader writes: Dieter Schmitz of the Linux Advocates writes a poignant review of what he finds is lacking in the latest Gnome 3.8 in Fedora 18:

Today, I thought I would try Gnome 3.8 on Fedora 18. My session was short-lived. After I went through making the extension additions and tested the Desktop, I was left feeling disappointed. I said to myself, this is not classic in the remotest sense of the word.

So, while Gnome may have you believe they are listening to users, I will tell you that they have moved backwards with 3.x so much that I think the whole project should be scrubbed and rewritten starting at 2.34.

That's how badly I feel about what has happened. Sorry but I have to truthful. It is kludgy and awful.


News

FOSS Sexism Claims Met With Ire and Denial 1255

Last Friday Bryce Byfield gave us a little insight into the fallout surrounding his article on sexism in the FOSS world. Unfortunately it seems that FOSS junkies did little better than the rest of the world with respect to sexism, displaying similar levels of denial, abuse, and ignorance. "But the real flood of emotion comes from the anti-feminists and the average men who would like to deny the importance of feminist issues in FOSS. Raise the subject of sexism, and you are met with illogic that I can only compare to that of the tobacco companies trying to deny the link between their products and cancer. Because I took a feminist stance in public, I have been abused in every way possible — being called irrelevant, a saboteur, coward, homosexual, and even a betrayer of the community. I know that many women in the community have been attacked much more savagely than I have, so I'm not complaining. Nor am I a stranger to readers who disagree with me, but the depth of reaction has taken me back more than once. I think the reaction is an expression of denial more than anything else."
Microsoft

Dell Says High Linux Netbook Returns a "Non-Issue" 324

Michiel Roos notes that at this week's OpenSource World, a Dell executive deflated Microsoft's claims that Linux notebooks have return rates four or five times higher than Windows machines. "Todd Finch, Dell senior product marketing manager, said the number of Linux returns are approximately the same as those for Windows netbooks. He categorized the matter of returns as a 'non-issue.' 'They are making something of nothing,' he said of Microsoft's claims."
The Internet

Australian ISPs Soon To Become Copyright Cops 183

srjh writes "In the Australian Federal Government's latest assault on the internet, draft legislation has been released that allows network operators to intercept communications to ensure that their networks are being 'appropriately used.' Such legislation is particularly important given the interference of Communications Minister Stephen Conroy in a recent copyright lawsuit against iiNet, one of the largest ISPs in the country. Conroy called prominent filtering opponent iiNet's inaction over copyright infringement 'stunning,' whereas iiNet claimed that it would be illegal under current Australian law to intercept its users' downloads. While this latest legislation appears to be a concession of that point, the government is said to be watching the case closely and along with attempts to introduce a three-strikes law in Australia, it appears the law will be changed if the government dislikes the outcome of the case. The internet villain of the year just continues to earn his title."
The Internet

CRIA, MPAA Demand Expanded DMCA For Canada 224

An anonymous reader writes "The Canadian Recording Industry Association and the MPAA's Canadian subsidiary are demanding that Canada adopt copyright laws that go beyond even the DMCA. The groups demand anti-circumvention law, three strikes and you're out legislation, and increased secondary liability for websites. The demands come as part of the national copyright consultation in which hundreds of Canadians have spoken out against such reforms."
GNU is Not Unix

Launch of First International FOSS Law Review 30

Graeme West writes "A group of tech lawyers has announced the release of the inaugural issue of the International Free and Open Source Software Law Review (IFOSS L. Rev.) — a place for high-level discussion of issues and best practice in the implementation of FOSS. You can view the announcement, or skip straight to Volume 1, Issue 1. A downloadable PDF file is also available. The journal is open access, and articles are CC licensed."
Security

UK Launches Dedicated Cyber Security Agency 60

Jack Spine writes "The UK government is launching an office dedicated to cyber attack and defence. The Office of Cyber Security will focus on protecting Britain's IT infrastructure, and will be similar to the US Cyber Command model. While the Pentagon Cyber Command will be lead by the NSA, the UK Cyber Security Operations Centre, which will coordinate UK cyber efforts, will be based at GCHQ in Cheltenham."
Government

Newspaper Crowdsources 700,000-Page Investigation of MP Expenses 188

projector writes with an interesting project from the UK: "The Guardian are crowd-sourcing the investigation of 700,000 pages of UK MPs' expenses data. Readers are being invited to categorize each document, transcribe the handwritten expenses details into an online form and alert the newspaper if any claims merit further investigation. 'Some pages will be covering letters, or claim forms for office stationery. But somewhere in here is the receipt for a duck island. And who knows what else may turn up. If you find something which you think needs further attention, simply hit the button marked "investigate this!" and we'll take a closer look.'"
Software

Canada Rejects Business Method Patents 68

"Canadian Patent Appeal Board Rules Against Business Method Patents," says a new post from Michael Geist; Lorien_the_first_one writes "Looks like the US courts could face some peer pressure," and supplies this excerpt: "[T]he panel delivered very strong language rejecting the mere possibility of business method patents under Canadian law. The panel noted that 'since patenting business methods would involve a radical departure from the traditional patent regime, and since the patentability of such methods is a highly contentious matter, clear and unequivocal legislation is required for business methods to be patentable.' ... In applying that analysis to the Amazon.com one-click patent, the panel concluded that 'concepts or rules for the more efficient conduct of online ordering, are methods of doing business. Even if these concepts or rules are novel, ingenious and useful, they are still unpatentable because they are business methods.'"
The Internet

Canada's Conference Board Found Plagiarizing Copyright Report 232

An anonymous reader writes "There is a storm brewing in Canada as the prestigious Conference Board of Canada has been caught plagiarizing US copyright lobby group documents in a report on copyright reform. The report was funded by the Canadian copyright lobby as well as by the Ontario government. The Conference Board has acknowledged some errors, but stands by the report, while the Ontario government admits spending thousands of dollars and it now wants some answers."
Government

VoIP Legal Status Worldwide? 180

Cigarra writes "There was much public debate going on during the last several months here in Paraguay, regarding the 'liberation of Internet,' that is, the lifting of the restriction on ISPs to connect directly to international carriers. Up until this week, they were forced to hire wholesale service from the State run telco, Copaco. During the last month, when the new regulation was almost ready, the real reason supporting the monopoly made it to the headlines: Copaco would fight for the monopoly, fearing VoIP based telephony. Finally, the regulator Conatel resolved today to end the monopoly, but a ruling on VoIP legal status was postponed for 'further study.' I guess this kind of 'problem' arose almost everywhere else in the world, so I ask the international slashdotters crowd: what is VoIP's legal status in your country / state / region? How well did incumbent telcos adapt to it, and overall, just how disruptive was this technology to established operators?"
Patents

Copyright and Patent Laws Hurt the Economy 597

Norsefire writes "Two economists at Washington University in St. Louis are claiming that copyright and patent laws are 'killing innovation' and 'hurting [the] economy.' Michele Boldrin and David K. Levine state they would like to see copyright law abolished completely as there are other protections available to the creators of 'intellectual property' (a term they describe as 'propaganda,' and of recent origin). They are calling on Congress to grant patents only where an invention has social value, where the patent would not stifle innovation, and where the absence of a patent would damage cost-effectiveness."
Software

Submission + - A Decent Document Management & Workflow Platfo

Bryan writes: I'm currently working at a large corporation which handles a large amount of paper received in the mail. While we currently sort, scan, and route tons of paper each day into our document management and workflow system, I am highly dissatisfied with it. So are our end-users. The vendor seems to think they can do no wrong, and relies upon 'but we do agile things!' as a crutch. The product was developed for small, agile shops, with little to no release engineering. There's zero support from the vendor for automating the process of building and deploying a working system from source & configuration files. There are substantial bugs in the system that in many (commonly run-into) corner cases can result in data loss. In our business environment (processing health-related claims for a certain government agency that doesn't want to be accountable for denying it's own citizens benefits, and wants to off-load all denials to the lowest bidder who can justify denial of the most claims) we cannot implement agile methods without wrapping them in a healthy dose of waterfall bureaucracy. Which means that even if the product actually worked as advertised it would still be a horrible fit for this environment. While the suits at the top are still making silly decisions like sticking with this product and vendor (thanks, Gartner) I can't help but thinking that open source could (and certainly should) do way better than this vendor has. So far, this vendor has done a fabulous job of getting me pissed off enough to actually learn the technologies behind their system, to the point where given enough time, I feel like I could do a better job at engineering a system than they have. While I don't want to go and out-right start something, I'd rather offer my help to an existing project to get it on a level where it can compete with this vendor. Even if management never sees the light (I doubt they will), it may force the vendor to actually improve their product. Does anyone here on /. know of an open system capable of large-scale, multi-user, document management, work-flow, and imaging system or platform? How about one that has parts of some of those but is missing other things? Barring anything existing (I haven't found anything close to this product we're using) out there that I could contribute to, what about the commercial offerings? Has anyone had a system knock their socks off? How well do they support custom work flow situations, multi-system integration, etc?
Java

Submission + - Clojure - The Revenge of the LISP (infoq.com)

murphee writes: LISP's due for the most anticipated comeback since Elvis with Clojure, a JVM based LISP which adds language support for Hashes and Sets, and for everyone worried about their free lunch: Software Transactional Memory and Concurrency features. An interview with the author of the first Pragmatic Programmer's book on Clojure shows what Clojure brings to the table, which includes: replacing Java as fast implementation language for JVM based languages.
Microsoft

Linux's Role In Microsoft's Decline 532

nerdyH writes "As early as last quarter, Microsoft admitted that Linux and netbooks were eating into its fat profits. Recently, it came home, with the software giant announcing its first-ever layoffs. LinuxDevices interviewed Linux Foundation Director Jim Zemlin on Linux's role in Microsoft's misfortunes. Zemlin sums it up pretty well: 'Companies can offer their own branded software platform based on Linux. If Microsoft is getting 75 percent margins, you would like some of that high-margin business, too.'"

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