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The Internet

Enhancement To P2P Cuts Network Costs 190

psycho12345 sends in an article in News.com on a study, sponsored by Verizon and Yale, finding that if P2P software is written more 'intelligently' (by localizing requests), the effect of bandwidth hogging is vastly reduced. According to the study, redoing the P2P into what they call P4P can reduce the number of 'hops' by an average of 400%. With localized P4P, less of the sharing occurs over large distances, instead making requests of nearby clients (geographically). The NYTimes covers the development from the practical standpoint of Verizon's agreement with P2P company Pando Networks, which will be involved in distributing NBC television shows next month. So the network efficiencies will accrue to legal P2P content, not to downloads from The Pirate Bay.

Open Source Growing At an Exponential Rate 146

sipmeister writes "Two computer scientists who work for enterprise software giant SAP have shown that open source is growing at an exponential rate. Not only is the code base growing exponentially, but also the number of viable projects. Researchers Amit Deshpande and Dirk Riehle analyzed the database of open source startup ohloh.net and looked at the last 16 years of growth in open source. They consistently got the best fit for the data using an exponential model. Relating this to open source market revenue, Desphande and Riehle conclude that open source is eating into closed source at a non-trivial pace."
The Courts

Is RIAA's MediaSentry Illegal in Your State? 200

NewYorkCountryLawyer writes "Is Warner Music, EMI, Vivendi Universal and Sony BMG 'investigator' MediaSentry operating illegally in your state?. The Massachusetts State police has already banned the company, and it's been accused of operating without a license in Oregon, Florida, Texas, and New York. Similar charges have now been leveled the organization in Michigan. Michigan's Department of Labor and Economic Growth, in response to a complaint, has confirmed that MediaSentry is not licensed in Michigan, and referred the complainant to the local prosecutor."

Investors, "Beware" of Record Companies 301

NewYorkCountryLawyer writes "The Motley Fool investment Web site warns investors to beware of 'Sony, BMG, Warner Music Group, Vivendi Universal, and EMI.' In an article entitled 'We're All Thieves to the RIAA,' a Motley Fool columnist, referring to the RIAA's pronouncement in early December in Atlantic v. Howell, that the copies which Mr. Howell had ripped from his CDs to MP3s in a shared files folder on his computer were 'unauthorized,' writer Alyce Lomax said 'a good sign of a dying industry that investors might want to avoid is when it would rather litigate than innovate, signaling a potential destroyer of value.'"

Submission + - Largest Swedish newspaper hacked

Marcus writes: "At January 2nd, 10.19 PM CET, it was announced (in Swedish) that Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet had been hacked. The announcement contains information about user names and passwords for the newspaper's internal mail system, as well as threats about sensitive information that had been gathered.

It did not take long before Aftonbladet managed to take the mail servers down, but in that time several persons were able to log in and send e-mails of questionable nature. Sensitive information may also have leaked, which brings up the question about Reporters' Privilege. It may be possible that names of sources providing Swedish media with sensitive information now are in the hands of hackers.

It appears that Aftonbladet, the victims of this attack, are trying to keep the lid on to this story. No reports have been published about the attack by any of the major Swedish newspapers, including Aftonbladet, although both Swedish radio and TV have included the story in their morning reports."

Submission + - New Asus Eee PC to be announced at CES 2008

An anonymous reader writes: According to several tech blogs, a new Asus Eee PC complete with WiMAX and a 9-inch screen is set to be announced at CES this year. Having recently bought an Eee PC, I can't say I'm too overjoyed that a new one is about to come out but it's going to be awesome. A larger screen is just what the Eee PC needs and hopefully Asus has improved the mouse buttons too.

Submission + - Bill Gates Goes Patent Crazy

theodp writes: "Bill Gates is listed as an inventor on no less than twenty-two of this week's newly-published patent applications, some of which seem likely to send chills down privacy advocates' spines: 1. Architecture for user- and context- specific prefetching and caching of information on portable devices (20080005695). 2. Using offline activity to enhance online searching (20080005313). 3. Reputation data for entities and data processing (20080005223). 4. Localized marketing (20080005104). 5. Validation of computer responses (20080005095). 6. Scenario-based search (20080005079). 7. Entity-specific search model (20080005076). 8. Intelligently guiding search based on user dialog (20080005075). 9. Search over designated content (20080005074). 10. Data management in social networks (20080005073). 11. Search engine that identifies and uses social networks in communications, retrieval, and electronic commerce (20080005072). 12. Search guided by location and context (20080005071). 13. Entity-specific search model (20080005069). 14. Context-based search, retrieval, and awareness (20080005068). 15. Context-based search, retrieval, and awareness (20080005067). 16. Desktop search from mobile device (20080005057). 17. Scenario-based search (20080005047). 18. Virtual spot market for advertisements (20080004990). 19. Web-based targeted advertising in a brick-and-mortar retail establishment using online customer information (20080004951). 20. Targeted advertising in brick-and-mortar establishments (20080004950). 21. Auctioning for video and audio advertising (20080004948). 22. Employment of offline behavior to display online content (20080004884). Excerpt: 'A sensor component includes sensors for collecting information about a customer or group of customers as they move through the store. The sensors can include capability for image processing, audio processing, light sensing, velocity sensing, direction sensing, proximity sensing, face recognition, pose recognition, transaction recognition, and biometric sensing, for example.'"
GNU is Not Unix

Submission + - RMS debates DRM at Yale, fights off MS ninjas (yaledailynews.com) 1

hesby writes: "On October 17, 2007, the Yale Political Union hosted a debate between Richard M. Stallman and Yale students on the resolution "DRM should be illegal". A barefoot RMS spoke of a corporate conspiracy to use DRM to empower companies and restrict the freedom of users, while students representing various campus political parties argued a variety of supporting points and counterpoints. Setting the stage for the debate were four masked ninjas who launched a mock attack on Stallman as inspired by an xkcd comic strip."
The Courts

Submission + - SFLC files first U.S. GPL violation lawsuit (lwn.net)

FPCat writes: The Software Freedom Law Center has filed a GPL violation lawsuit. "The Software Freedom Law Center (SFLC) today announced that it has filed the first ever U.S. copyright infringement lawsuit based on a violation of the GNU General Public License (GPL) on behalf of its clients, two principal developers of BusyBox, against Monsoon Multimedia, Inc. BusyBox is a lightweight set of standard Unix utilities commonly used in embedded systems and is open source software licensed under GPL version 2."

Submission + - First Ever U.S. GPL Violation Lawsuit Filed (softwarefreedom.org)

Adam Hazzlebank writes: "The Software Freedom Law Center has filed the first ever U.S. copyright infringement lawsuit based on a violation of the GPL on behalf of the developers of BusyBox. The device in question is a manufactured by Monsoon Multimedia who have publicly acknowledged their use of BusyBox, but have so far refused to make the source available, as required by the GPL. This should be an interesting and important test case for the GPL."

Submission + - Open source developers sue to enforce GPL (vnunet.com)

pete314 writes: "Two developers behind the BusyBox open source project have filed a lawsuit against device maker Monsoon Multimedia, demanding that the firm abides to the General Public License version 2. The case marks the first time that developers are asking courts in the US to enforce the license, although the GPL-violations project has previously successfully enforced the license in Europe."
Operating Systems

Submission + - SCO Group admits it may fold (news.com)

mytrip writes: "Having filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, SCO claims it may go under permanently, depending on how much the court decides it owes Novell.

The SCO Group may need to wind up its operations after its copyright case against Novell collapsed, prompting it to file for bankruptcy.

"As a result of both the court's August 10, 2007, ruling and our entry into Chapter 11, there is substantial doubt about our ability to continue as a going concern," read part of a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, made on Tuesday."


Submission + - Snowed by SCO ... and that's a quote. (forbes.com)

TihSon writes: It seems that we aren't the only ones who have noticed SCO's fall. For a giant helping of a reporter eating crow, click. I especially like the reference to the "gang of amateur sleuths" who haunt the halls of a site called Groklaw. I guess in his eyes they aren't paid enough to warrant the kind of respect they clearly deserve.

Submission + - SCO Admits It May Go Under Soon

Penguinisto writes: "It appears that now even SCO is seeing that they're doomed. CNET reveals that in a public statement by SCO yesterday, it was announced that: "If a significant cash payment is required, or significant assets are put under a constructive trust, the carrying amount of our long-lived assets may not be recovered." So as a parallel to RMS Titanic, has the bow finally dropped below the waves, as shareholders and SCO employees scramble for the last few remaining lifeboat slots?"

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