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The Courts

Ted "A Series of Tubes" Stevens Found Guilty 565

techmuse writes "According to a series of tubes sites, Senator Ted Stevens has been found guilty of lying about free home renovations that he received from an oil contractor. He faces up to 5 years in jail, and the outcome of his current reelection bid is now in doubt. 'The conviction came after a tumultuous week in the jury room. First there were complaints about an unruly juror, then another had to be replaced when she left Washington following the death of her father. Finally, jurors on Monday discovered a discrepancy in the indictment that had been overlooked by prosecutors. Jury deliberations in this historic trial have at times been as contentious as some of the proceedings The Justice Department indicted Stevens on July 29, and the Alaska Republican took a huge legal gamble and asked for a speedy trial in order to resolve the charges before Election Day. Judge Emmet Sullivan complied with Stevens' request, and in less than three months from the time of his indictment, Stevens was found guilty.'"
Announcements

Submission + - Today is Fair Use Day! (fairuseday.com)

jZnat writes: Several websites are reporting that today marks the third-annual global Fair Use Day, a day dedicated to raising awareness of copyright issues. The idea was first put into action by Eric Clifford on 11 July 2005 to raise awareness of the ever-increasing shift of power in copyright issues around the world. Other reports on this include Ars Technica's, TorrentFreak's, Boing Boing's, and the Pirate Party's (US).
Music

Submission + - Putting Piracy in Perspective

An anonymous reader writes: Over the past year, Slashdot has pointed to many industry claims and governmental pressure (here, here, and here) arguing that Canada as a piracy haven. Canadian law prof Michael Geist has produced Putting Canadian "Piracy" in Perspective, a video that demonstrates how the claims are hugely exaggerated. For example, it shows how despite the MPAA's claim of movie piracy, Canada was the industry's fastest growing market last year. Similarly, while the recording industry says Canada is the world's top P2P country, the data shows that the Canadian music industry is experiencing record gains and that most of the decline from the major labels is due to retail pricing pressures.
Music

Submission + - Clear Channel: indie artists must waive royalties (futureofmusic.org)

Theodora Michaels writes: "As part of Clear Channel's payola settlement with the FCC, the radio networks agreed to air 4,200 hours of local and independent music on their stations. Per the settlement, the broadcaster set up an online application for artists to submit their music for airplay on each of its stations. The application requires the artists to waive their right to digital performance royalties."
Programming

Submission + - Con Kolivas releases last ever -ck patchset (blogspot.com)

FreeGamer writes: "Anybody who ever tried ricing their Gentoo in order to attain half-decent audio/visual perforance, or knows much about kernel patchsets, will no doubt be aware of the -ck kernel patchset. It is a patchset for the Linux kernel that is aimed at providing an optimal desktop experience.

Today saw the last ever release of the -ck kernel patchset. Read on for an overview of the reasons why Linux is losing one of it's most talented contributors."

Linux Business

Turns Out Ubuntu Dell Costs $225 More 361

An anonymous reader writes "One week ago this community discussed the apparent price advantage of Ubuntu Dell over Vista. The article linked to a Dell IdeaStorm page with the status: 'Implemented.' Today the status has changed on that page to 'Reneged: Ubuntu Dell is $225 More Than Windows Dell.' The full price of a Ubuntu Inspiron 1420N is indeed $50 cheaper than the identical hardware configuration with Vista — except that a $275 free upgrade to 2GB memory and a 160-GB hard drive is available for Windows only."
Microsoft

Microsoft's OOXML Formulas Could Be Dangerous 360

hill101 writes "According to Rob Weir's blog, Microsoft's 325-page OOXML specification for spreadsheet formulas is deeply flawed. From basic trigonometric functions that forget to specify units, to statistical functions, to critical financial functions — the specification does not contain correct formulas that could possibly be implemented in an interoperable way. Quoting Mr. Weir: 'It has incorrect formulas that, if implemented according to the standard, may cause loss of life, property, and capital... Shame on all those who praised and continue to praise the OOXML formula specification without actually reading it.'"
XBox (Games)

Submission + - The nightmare of Xbox live DRM

Darren writes: There is a huge elephant in the room with XBox Live. If you are one of the "3 to 5%" (ha!) of XBox 360 owners who have had to have their defective console replaced, you'll suddenly find that the content you legally purchased on XBox Live is only playable by the same account that downloaded it, and only when you're connected. This is Microsoft's way of punishing you for having a defective console. 55 page (and counting) discussion here. — but no solution from Microsoft yet, just an awkward work-around. (I'm currently on console #7.) This was made all the worse by the recent 14 hour+ XBox Live outage.
Education

Submission + - Canadian University students protecting their IP

innocent_white_lamb writes: Graduate students at Carleton University (Ottawa) are taking steps to protect their intellectual property and insuring that they are being properly recognized for their work, according to this article. This is in response to the increased commercialization of research done at universities, and high-profile cases of copyright infringement by professors at the University of Toronto and Indiana University.
Novell

Submission + - openSUSE Hobbled by Microsoft Patents

kripkenstein writes: "openSUSE 10.2 no longer enables ClearType (which improves the appearance of fonts). The reason given on the openSUSE mailing list for not enabling it is:

Note that this feature is covered by several Microsoft patents and should not be activated in any default build of the library.
As reported on and discussed here and here, this matter may be connected to the Microsoft-Novell deal. If so, Novell should have received a license for the Microsoft patents, assuming the deal covered all relevant patents. Does the license therefore extend only to SUSE, but not openSUSE?"
Windows

Submission + - Is Wine or Vista more Windows compatible?

ZMXJ writes: We've been hearing quite a few anecdotes & reviews that complain about poor compatibility of old hardware and pre-vista-windows software with Vista; and quite a few articles about improved compatibility of Wine.

My suspicion is that Linux has much better hardware compatibility with Win2K era PCs than Vista does; and my suspicion is that the software compatibility of Wine vs Vista for Win2K apps is about the same. But before I make a recommendation that upgrading to Wine would be better than upgrading to Vista in our company, I wanted to Ask Slashdot to see what other people's experiences with either transition have been like. So far our company has no experience with Vista nor Wine/Linux (quite a bit of Win2K & Linux experience, though). Any experience you guys had moving ot to Vista or to Wine would be of interest.

Would an upgrade from Win2K to Vista or an upgrade from Win2K to Wine/Linux be less painful?
Linux Business

Submission + - Linux Exchange server?

An anonymous reader writes: Bear with me, this may seem like a n00b question. I know that Samba can emulate a domain controller for windows machines, but is there anything that can emulate an exchange server in the same way? Anything with the same functionality of an exchange server and transparent to the end user?
Patents

EFF Patent Busting - Prior Art Needed for VOIP 170

JumperCable writes "The Electronic Frontier Foundation is seeking to bust an overly broad patent by a company called Acceris. Acceris claims patents on processes that implement voice-over-Internet protocol (VoIP) using analog phones as endpoints. These patents cover telephone calls over the Internet. Specifically, the claims describe a system that connects two parties where the receiving party does not need to have a computer or an Internet connection, but the call is routed in part through the Internet or any other 'public computer network'. The calls must also be 'full duplex', meaning that both parties can listen and talk at the same time, like in an ordinary phone call. To bust these overly broad claims, we need 'prior art' — any publication, article, patent or other public writing that describes the same or similar ideas being implemented before September 20, 1995."

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