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Communications

Open Source Linux Phone Goes On Sale 520

An anonymous reader writes "Sean Moss-Pultz has just announced on the OpenMoko mailing list that the Neo1973 is finally available for purchase. OpenMoko.com is now taking orders via credit card. OpenMoko intends to 'free your phone' through a hardware-independent and open source user interface backed by the Linux kernel. This device could very well stand as a competitor to the more expensive Apple iPhone, but at a fraction of the price and with no vendor lock-in. Although the devices in this release cycle (GTA01) are mainly intended for developers, the up-and-coming devices targeted to the consumer market (GTA02) will also feature WiFi capabilities, a 3D acceleration unit, and 256MB of on-board flash. Both units will use the MicroSD card interface for removable storage and have USB client / host capabilities. For a full feature list, check out OpenMoko.com or the OpenMoko Wiki."
Privacy

Submission + - More Universities Cave to RIAA

Cow_With_Gun writes: Starting with a friendly reminder that downloading music under copyright is illegal the University of Washinton has informed its student body that the university will comply fully with RIAA demands to deliver (extortion) letters to IP addresses tracked from downloading. Another large university has chosen to become proxy for the RIAA, this time one close to home for many in the IT world. How long until all schools given in and aid in the extortion of the unconvicted?



Full text.

"This message is being sent to all students with approval from the Office of the Vice Provost for Student Life. _____ Dear Student: I am writing to inform you of a development that could become a serious issue for some of our students — the law governing downloading and sharing of music and video from the internet. Under copyright law, it is illegal to download or share copyrighted materials such as music or movies without the permission of the copyright owner. The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) in recent years has taken an aggressive approach to stopping this illegal downloading and file sharing. This has put many students at the nation's colleges and universities at some legal risk. I write first to caution you against illegally downloading or sharing files. Your actions when you do so are traceable and could result in a significant financial penalty to you. Second, I want to inform you about a new process the RIAA has initiated and the University's role in this process. The RIAA is now sending colleges and universities a letter for each instance they find of a student illegally downloading material from the internet and requesting the university to identify the individual student and forward the letter to him or her. The letter, called an "Early Settlement Letter" notifies the student that he or she has 20 days to settle with the RIAA by going to a designated website, entering identifying information, and paying a set amount, usually between $3,000 and $5,000, but sometimes considerably more. If the recipient chooses not to settle, the RIAA will file a lawsuit and the offer to settle for the amount stipulated is no longer an option. The University has been notified by the RIAA that we will be receiving a number of these early settlement letters. After careful consideration, we have decided to forward the letters to the alleged copyright violators. We do so primarily because we believe students should have the opportunity to avail themselves of the settlement option if they so choose. Not forwarding the RIAA letter to students could result in their being served with a lawsuit, with no chance to settle it beforehand. The University is unable to provide legal services to students who have violated copyright law through illegal downloading or sharing. If you receive a letter from the RIAA, we encourage you to engage a personal attorney. If you have questions, please let us know. We know how tempting it is to download music or movies and share files with your friends. But you need to know that it is illegal to do so and that the consequences can be severe. Please inform yourself of the requirements of the law and please obey it. Otherwise, it may prove costly for you and your family. Sincerely yours, Eric S. Godfrey Vice Provost for Student Life OVPSL@u.washington.edu"
The Almighty Buck

Submission + - Birth of the Apple Store

Gammu writes: During the mid-nineties, Mac users were prone to dealing with poorly-trained and ill-maintained Mac sections in big box computers and electronics stores. These environments did not foster customer loyalty nor did they help differentiate the Mac user-experience from Windows. After Steve Jobs returned to Apple, he began a concerted campaign to help sales by improving the presentation of Macs. This campaign culminated with the development and introduction of the Apple Stores in 2001.
Education

Submission + - University of Washington to identify infringers

tor528 writes: "I received the following letter from the Vice Provost for Student Life at my school:

Dear Student:

        I am writing to inform you of a development that could become a serious issue
for some of our students — the law governing downloading and sharing of music and
video from the internet. Under copyright law, it is illegal to download or share
copyrighted materials such as music or movies without the permission of the
copyright owner. The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) in recent
years has taken an aggressive approach to stopping this illegal downloading and
file sharing. This has put many students at the nation's colleges and
universities at some legal risk. I write first to caution you against illegally
downloading or sharing files. Your actions when you do so are traceable and
could result in a significant financial penalty to you. Second, I want to inform
you about a new process the RIAA has initiated and the University's role in this
process.

        The RIAA is now sending colleges and universities a letter for each instance
they find of a student illegally downloading material from the internet and
requesting the university to identify the individual student and forward the
letter to him or her. The letter, called an "Early Settlement Letter" notifies
the student that he or she has 20 days to settle with the RIAA by going to a
designated website, entering identifying information, and paying a set amount,
usually between $3,000 and $5,000, but sometimes considerably more. If the
recipient chooses not to settle, the RIAA will file a lawsuit and the offer to
settle for the amount stipulated is no longer an option.

        The University has been notified by the RIAA that we will be receiving a number
of these early settlement letters. After careful consideration, we have decided
to forward the letters to the alleged copyright violators. We do so primarily
because we believe students should have the opportunity to avail themselves of
the settlement option if they so choose. Not forwarding the RIAA letter to
students could result in their being served with a lawsuit, with no chance to
settle it beforehand.

        The University is unable to provide legal services to students who have
violated copyright law through illegal downloading or sharing. If you receive a
letter from the RIAA, we encourage you to engage a personal attorney. If you
have questions, please let us know.

        We know how tempting it is to download music or movies and share files with
your friends. But you need to know that it is illegal to do so and that the
consequences can be severe. Please inform yourself of the requirements of the
law and please obey it. Otherwise, it may prove costly for you and your family.

Sincerely yours,

Eric S. Godfrey
Vice Provost for Student Life
OVPSL@u.washington.edu
"
Mozilla

Submission + - Planned Firefox Support changes - input wanted

tqft writes: "Mozilla is planning a major change to how Firefox (and Firefox only) is supported

http://wiki.mozilla.org/Support:Overview
"To date, Mozilla community volunteers have provided user support for Firefox that has met and exceeded the needs of the technology users and the early adopters of Firefox. As Firefox's market share grows beyond early adopters, our user support needs to evolve. This Firefox Support Working Group has spent the last month doing research and community outreach (see below for details) on how Mozilla should evolve user support through a community based approach."

http://wiki.mozilla.org/images/9/98/Firefox-Suppor t-Mock-Homepa.png
http://wiki.mozilla.org/images/8/8d/Firefox_Suppor t_Work_Flow.png
http://wiki.mozilla.org/Support:PRD

What is to become of mozillazine?
http://groups.google.com/group/mozilla.support.pla nning/browse_thread/thread/ff3a4aa6c0e678f6/3eab18 1c18628574#3eab181c18628574

"
We should define what its role will be. Based on previous discussions,
this is my best guess:

-Firefox support KB content will be moved to sumo (the old articles
will have a redirect to the new)
-Sumo will take over the forum for Firefox Support. The Firefox
Support forum at mozillaZine will be closed. Other Firefox discussion
and non-Firefox discussion and support will remain at mozillaZine.
-Sumo will be the preferred support avenue for Firefox. The support
avenues for other products will remain unchanged.
-mozillaZine blogs and IRC will not be affected.
"

All this is currently proposed, under discussion and subject to change.

But if you have a view — you might want to get it heard before too long.

http://groups.google.com/group/mozilla.support.pla nning"
Microsoft

Submission + - Microsoft threatens its Most Valuable Professional

skelator2821 writes: Who said you could improve our software? What's the best way to attract a pile of threatening lawyers' letters from Microsoft? Sell pirate copies of Windows? Write a DRM-busting program? Londoner Jamie Cansdale has just discovered a new approach. He had the temerity to make Redmond's software better. As a hobby, Cansdale developed an add-on for Microsoft Visual Studio. TestDriven.NET allows unit test suites to be run directly from within the Microsoft IDE. Cansdale gave away this gadget on his website, and initially received the praises of Microsoft. In fact, Microsoft was so pleased with him, it gave him a Most Valuable Professionals (MVP) award, which it says it gives to "exceptional technical community leaders from around the world who voluntarily share their high quality, real world expertise with others". Pretty SAD story if you ask me .. Rest at this link. http://www.theregister.co.uk/2007/06/05/microsoft_ mvp_threats/
GNOME

Submission + - Syncing Music Players in Linux

Daengbo writes: "I recently sold my old laptop to a friend, and she asked me to keep Ubuntu on it rather than installing Windows for her. To help her with the transition, I wrote two intro lessons for her, but we've hit a stumbling block. The iRivier Clix (4GB) she's been using syncs with Windows Media Player. My research shows that the model has both an MTP for the sync and a UMS mode which acts as a mass storage device. Rhythmbox's "Scan Removable Media" doesn't pick up anything from the USB mass storage device, and although Syncropated claims to support these types of devices, it doesn't find any supported devices.

Unless you use an iPod, this appears to be a real weak point in the Linux desktop. Do Slashdotters sync their mass storage devices and music players? What do you use?"
Math

Submission + - Extra time dimension could simplify physics

Daniel Dvorkin writes: "University of Southern California physicist Itzhak Bars proposes an extra dimension of time to resolve some fundamental physics problems. According to the article, "the math with four space and two time dimensions reproduces the standard equations describing the basic particles and forces." IANAP, but this sounds to me like it might be an elegant solution to some of the ever-increasing complexity of modern physics."
Internet Explorer

Submission + - IE7 lets passwords slip 'by design'

tweakers.net reader writes: "Visitors can have their passwords for many community sites stolen if they use Internet Explorer 7 or lower. Almost all sites that let their users host images or other binary data are vulnerable. Microsoft has been informed, but tells this bug is 'by design' (translated from Dutch). The problem lies in the way that Internet Explorer(IE) handles binary data. Instead of following the standard (RFC2616), IE determines the content-type in a wrong way. A perfectly valid image like this one or this one is interpreted as HTML in IE. Thereby, JavaScript is executed and passwords for community sites can be stolen (because of this XSS vulnerability). Microsoft will not fix this problem before Internet Explorer 8. On my machine, passwords seem to be safe from this bug with Opera 9.21 and Firefox 2.0.0.3."
Patents

Submission + - SCO Delisted

Technician writes: I have been following the fall of SCO stock. When I checked their stock tonight I found the anouncement of the delisting instead of a chart. http://finance.yahoo.com/q?s=SCOX "SCOX has failed to meet NASDAQ Capital Market continued listing requirement(s)."
Television

Submission + - HBO Says DRM Is Misnomer; Has even better term!

TheOrderOfTheGrandWhoop writes: Broadcast Newsrooms is reporting, via the AP, that HBO's CTO Bob Zitter thinks Digital rights management (DRM) is the wrong term for technology that secures programmers' content as it moves to new digital platforms since it emphasized restrictions instead of opportunities. Instead, Zitter would like to provide us, the consumers, with a new, snazzy, even better, Firefox-spell-checker hating: Digital Consumer Enablement or DCE for 'those in the biz'. Zitter also laments that the fact that current high-definition set-tops still output unencrypted analog video through their component video outputs makes it too much of a piracy risk to widely offer high-definition HBO content on-demand today.
The Courts

Submission + - Alleged pedos really victims of credit card fraud?

clickclickdrone writes: "A large number of people in the UK accused of buying child porn via credit card are claiming they have been victims of credit card fraud. The people, identified by Operation Ore after details of the credit cards were found on a US website say they are innocent and that their card details were used fraudulently. Furthermore, they claim the police simply did not understand the concept of wholesale credit card fraud and targetted them needlessly. Whilst 2300 people have been guilty, another 2000 had charges dropped but not before damage was made to their reputation as well as having their lives turned upside down.
BBC News has the details."

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