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Software

Submission + - Fedora Project to help revitalize RPM

-=Moridin=- writes: "The Fedora Project has announced plans to revitalize RPM, the package manager used by many Linux distros. According to the announcement, "Job #1 is to take the current RPM codebase and clean it up, and in doing so work with all the other people and groups who rely on RPM to build a first-rate upstream project." For more information, see the the RPM web site and the new wiki-based RPM FAQ.

The issue of RPM's upstream development has been a thorny issue ever since Jeff Johnson, the original maintainer of RPM, left Red Hat."
Editorial

Submission + - CUTTING-EDGE BROWSER-BASED TECHNOLOGY USED TO TRAN

Harini Venkatesan writes: "In an effort to disseminate information on the life and work of Muhammad Yunus, Ashoka, which is a global association of the world's leading social entrepreneurs, has produced three films on the Nobel Peace Prize winner.

In a groundbreaking translation effort — the first of its kind, these films have been translated into 100 different languages. Through browser-based subtitling technology provided by dotSUB, people from around the world helped translate and subtitle the web-based videos from English into 100 different languages, from Arabic to Zulu. This has potential to change not only the face of film forever, but also foreign relations. Can you imagine the possibilities this technology will unfold in the UN, for example?

Yunus has worked closely with Ashoka over the years, and he is a founding member of our Global Academy. These films are part of Ashoka's Global Academy Social Entrepreneurship Series, the first-ever DVD collection on social entrepreneurship. They are available for viewing at http://www.ashoka.org/100translations.

Attached below is a press release on the Yunus films. Please feel free to contact me if you need further information.

Thank you in advance for your consideration,

Harini Venkatesan

On behalf of Ashoka

212-751-3302

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Harini Venkatesan, (212) 751-3302, harini@groupsjr.com

ASHOKA FILMS ON MUHAMMAD YUNUS, 2006 NOBEL PEACE PRIZE WINNER,

TO BE ACCESSIBLE WORLDWIDE THROUGH GROUNDBREAKING

TRANSLATION EFFORT

Dr. Yunus' Extraordinary Contributions to Social Entrepreneurship Translated into

100 Languages in First-Ever Global Web-Based Subtitling Project

ARLINGTON, Va. — December 14, 2006. On its 25th anniversary, Ashoka, a global

organization supporting social entrepreneurship worldwide, announced a landmark

project which has brought together people from around the world to subtitle films in up to

100 languages on social entrepreneur Muhammad Yunus.

"The media describes Yunus as an economist, professor, or banker, but really why the

Nobel Committee selected him is because Yunus is the quintessential global social

entrepreneur. His brilliant microcredit strategy is based on unleashing the potential of

every person to change his or her life. He embodies Ashoka's vision that everyone in the

world is a changemaker," said Susan Davis, Chair of Ashoka's Global Academy for

Social Entrepreneurship.

Dr. Yunus, a founding Member of Ashoka's Global Academy, shares his story in 3 films

produced by the Academy and available for viewing at

http://www.ashoka.org/100translations, which detail his unique approach to eradicating

poverty and next steps for a global microfinance revolution.

To honor Yunus as one of the world's greatest social entrepreneurs, Ashoka's global

network including 1800 Ashoka Fellows in over 60 countries has joined efforts with

several organizations to ensure that millions of people have access to understanding the

remarkable work of this year's Nobel Prize winner.

To support Ashoka's efforts, Visa International helped underwrite the project.

"Increasing understanding of Dr. Yunus' work and of the potential of microfinance is an

immensely worthwhile endeavor" said John Elkins, EVP of Visa International and

member of the UN Advisors Group on Inclusive Financial Sectors. "Dr. Yunus has

demonstrated how people's lives can be transformed by giving them the opportunity to

pursue their innate entrepreneurial capabilities."

Ashoka is collaborating with dotSUB (http://dotsub.com) to translate and subtitle three

films on Dr. Yunus and one film on Bill Drayton, Founder and CEO of Ashoka, who

explains the rise of social entrepreneurs. Through dotSUB's innovative, browser-based

subtitling technology, people from around the world helped translate and subtitle the

web-based streaming videos from English into countless other languages, from Arabic to

Zulu.

Other partners supporting the project included ProZ.com, who supplied professional

linguists to help subtitle the films (http://www.proz.com/employers), and Translators

Without Borders, created by Eurotexte to provide free translations to humanitarian

organizations (http://www.translatorswithoutborders.org).

The films on Yunus and Drayton are part of Ashoka's Global Academy Social

Entrepreneurship Series, the first-ever DVD collection on social entrepreneurship. To

purchase the complete 16-part Series, please visit http://www.dvd.ashoka.org./

Footage of Yunus is available for the media at http://www.thenewsmarket.com/ashoka.

To participate in this ongoing global translation collaboration, please visit

http://www.dotsub.com/nobel.

About Ashoka

Ashoka is the global association of the world's leading social entrepreneurs — men and

women with system-changing solutions for the world's most urgent social problems.

Since 1981, Ashoka has elected over 1,800 leading social entrepreneurs as Ashoka

Fellows, providing them with living stipends, professional support, and access to a global

network of peers in more than 60 countries. Working with these social entrepreneurs,

Ashoka builds communities of innovators who work collectively to transform society and

design new ways for the citizen sector to become more productive, entrepreneurial and

globally integrated. For more information, please visit http://www.ashoka.org/

About dotSUB

dotSUB is a young company that has developed a suite of simple, easy to use, browser

based tools for subtitling video from one language into any other language in real time.

The goal of dotSUB is to increase the power and relevance of video by making it

available to viewers in languages that are most familiar to them. dotSUB encourages

community and user involvement in a 'wiki-type' model to enable it to reach film and

video content at both ends of the "long tail" to become available in any language.

About VISA

Visa connects cardholders, merchants and financial institutions through the world's

largest electronic payments network. Visa products allow buyers and sellers to conduct

commerce with ease and confidence in both the physical and virtual worlds. Visa is

committed to the sustained growth of electronic payment systems to support the needs

of all stakeholders and to drive economic growth. For more information, visit

http://www.corporate.visa.com/

About ProZ.com

With more than 160,000 translators, interpreters and linguists, ProZ.com is by far the

leading enabling and sourcing portal for language professionals worldwide. ProZ.com

provides its vast network of linguists with a host of valuable member resources -

enabling members to more efficiently perform their demanding work. For more

information, please visit http://www.proz.com/employers"
Patents

Submission + - Public data: open or owned?

kpw10 writes: The online access to US patent data has seen significant changes recently with the release of Google's patent search as well as the beta launch of the All Patents Initiative's search interface. For the first time these tools allow the public to search US patents issued since 1790. Current search tools offered by the USPTO only allow searching for patents issued after 1976, leaving some four million patents as digital orphans. In addition to allowing search access the All Patents Initiative, operated by a consortium of business and academic interests, intends to address the needs of bulk users of patent data. Currently those wishing to access data about the patent collection in its entirety for analytical purposes, such as examining trends in innovation, must purchase data either from the USPTO or other commercial providers — an unfortunate and surprisingly common problem with public datasets. In many respects these two search interfaces mirror the ideological differences already being fought between Google's book scanning project and the Internet Archive's Open Library. Each provides a new form of access to a vast but digitally inaccessible public domain dataset — one by effectively making it property of a corporation and the other by distributing digital ownership to the public. The question this begs: how best can we maintain open access to public data while expanding its value through digitization efforts like these?
United States

Journal Journal: Do's and Don'ts of Contacting Your Senator

1. Do write / call them. They don't know what you don't say. The cardinal rule in politics is that people only contact politicians when they are opposed. Be sure and let your Senator know when you support them. If you are going to write or call them - learn the how the mail works, and how to leave a message (include name, address and phone number). Don't send in a form letter!

United States

Journal Journal: How mail (and phone calls) work in the Senate

Please note that each Senate office will handle mail slightly different, however this post is general enough that it should apply most everywhere.

I will only be talking about mail from constituents, meaning people who are writing their duly elected representatives, and not someone else's. (See journal post of do's and don't of contacting your senator.)

Also please know that there is a delay in your mail reaching your Senator (it's about 3 days right now).

Security

Submission + - Nessus flaw scanner groks SCADA

DarkShadeChaos writes: From the article "Tenable Network Security released on Tuesday 32 plugins to allow its free — but no longer open-source — Nessus vulnerability scanner the ability to search for flaws in common supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) systems."
http://www.securityfocus.com/brief/383
Portables

Submission + - What is a good laptop car mount?

masdog writes: "I have a work vehicle that need a laptop mounted in it. Although I have done a few searches and come across a few companies that make laptop mounts, mainly Jotto Desk and RAM, I haven't been able to find anything on the quality of those products. My boss wants more information before he'll consider cutting a check, and I don't want to recommend a poor quality product.

Slashdot, what is a good car mount for a laptop?"
Businesses

Submission + - "Hands Off" Employment Agreements

An anonymous reader writes: I have recently found that my current employer has been negotiating agreements with other business in my geographic area establishing "hands off" employment agreements, basically saying that we won't recruit their employees as long as they don't recruit ours. This is being done without the permission of the affected employees, of which I am one, drastically limiting my job prospects in the area. I would like to move on to other jobs but am having difficulty finding a company willing to break the agreements due to the rather severe penalties for doing so — up to one year salary in "knowledge royalties." Do others have similar situations, either with or without your consent, or can anyone comment on the legality of enforcing these agreements should I be hired elsewhere?
Red Hat Software

Submission + - Red Hat Frees RPM

An anonymous reader writes: There has been a lot of discussion in the past few months about RPM — its present state, its future plans, and its leadership team. In particular, the Fedora Project has received numerous requests asking us, "what are you guys doing about RPM?" Here is our answer, in a few words. Then if you want more, you can read the rest of this note: http://www.redhat.com/archives/fedora-announce-lis t/2006-December/msg00003.html
Windows

Submission + - Talking Linux IP with Bill Gates

An anonymous reader writes: http://www.niallkennedy.com/blog/archives/2006/12/ microsoft-linux-patents.html

Cut from blog transcript of a blogger's meeting with Bill Gates:

    Bill: I don't know BayStar.
    Niall: It's an investment company. One of their executives testified Microsoft invested $50 million to offset SCO's costs in the lawsuit.
    Bill: When?

Oh, come on!
Media

Submission + - Japan convicts P2P author

icedcool writes: "A Kyoto district court has convicted and fined Isamu Kaneko, author of the Winny P2P file sharing program."
User Journal

Journal Journal: Medical school and academics 4

This is the first week of my Christmas break from school, so I've been trying very hard to do as little as possible. Last week was horrible with seven straight days of 12+ hour days and lots of driving and everything was due and professors suddenly remembering we were supposed to have 6 grades for the semester and so were 2 short and so we had to have a test the last two days the class met.
Space

Submission + - Hawking Radiation does not exist.

morlock_man writes: "Based on the knowledge derived from the previous three articles, the assumptions concerning the formation of Hawking Radiation are very flawed. Attempts at the production of mini-black holes through high energy interactions in the Large Hardon Collider will no produce decaying black holes. They will produce stable black holes that will result in the early demise of mankind.

The last piece of the Large Hardon Collider was delivered last month. It is vital that this equipment is never used in this fashion. I know of no other way to get the word out fast enough."

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