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Security

Submission + - Should Developers Be Liable for their Code? (linuxjournal.com)

Glyn Moody writes: "They might be, if a new European Commission consumer protection proposal, which suggests "licensing should guarantee consumers the same basic rights as when they purchase a good: the right to get a product that works with fair commercial conditions," becomes law. The idea of making Microsoft pay for the billions of dollars of damage caused by flaws in its product is certainly attractive, but where would this idea leave free software coders?"
The Internet

Submission + - Harvard Bookstore Bogus Legal Threat to Startup (thecrimson.com)

Jesse Maddox writes: "Recently BrunoBooks.com (www.brunobooks.com) received a Cease & Desist letter from Barnes & Noble, with BN threatening to sue us for "damages, profits, costs and attorney's fees" for violating and infringing Barnes & Noble's "exclusive rights in the copyrighted work." BrunoBooks collects textbook information from the Barnes & Noble website at Harvard, and uses this information to allow students to compare prices at the bookstore with those of online vendors. The problem is that the copyright claims are patently false, as explained by Wendy Seltzer from Harvard Law School's Berkman Center: "I think Barnes & Noble is deliberating misinterpreting the law...They're claiming broader protections than the law would give us." According to Seltzer, who read the cease and desist letter, copyright law only covers the selection and arrangement of factual information and not the information itself, such as textbook titles and prices. Said BrunoBooks CEO Jesse Maddox, "Perhaps Barnes & Noble would be better off devoting more resources to finding ways to reduce textbook prices, rather than hiring lawyers to harass and intimidate startups with bogus legal claims." Or did Amazon just beat them to that? (http://tech.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=09/05/06/1532239)"
Medicine

Submission + - More Fake Journals from Elsevier

daemonburrito writes: Last week, we learned about Elsevier publishing a bogus journal for Merck. Now several librarians say that they have uncovered an entire imprint of "advertorial" publications.

Excerpta Medica, a "strategic medical communications agency", is an Elsevier division. Along with the now infamous "Australasian Journal of Bone and Joint Medicine", it published a number of other "journals".

Elsevier CEO Michael Hansen now admits that at least six fake journals were published for pharma companies.
Linux Business

Submission + - Trademarks: The hidden menace

An anonymous reader writes: In a blog posting entitled "Trademarks: The Hidden Menace", Keir Thomas asks why open source advocates are keen to suggest patent and copyright reform, yet completely ignore the issue of trademarks, which can be just as dangerous. FTA: "Even within the Linux community, trademarking can be used as obstructively as copyright and patenting to further business ends. ... Is this how open source is supposed to work? Restricted redistribution? Tight control on who can compile software and still be able to call it by its proper name?"
Censorship

Submission + - Fired for writing concerns about anti piracy to MP (arstechnica.com)

neurone333 writes: France, may, 6th 2009, Libération reported this story, now all over French newspapers : A TV executive has been fired for writing his concerns about anti-piracy law (HADOPI aka 3 strikes and you're out) to his Member of Parliament, the UMP Françoise de Panafieu.

Françoise de Panafieu forwards this email to the UMP Christine Albanel, France's Minister for Culture and Communication, author of the anti-piracy law "HADOPI".

The email was then forwarded to TF1, the largest TV network in Europe. The author of the email, Jérôme Bourreau-Guggenheim.he was called into his boss' office and shown... an exact copy of his e-mail. He was then fired for "strong differences with the strategy"... in a private email sent from a private (gmail) adress.

Irish times has an explanation for "the incestuous relationship between his government and TF1" : TF1's owner, the construction billionaire Martin Bouygues, is godfather to Mr Sarkozy's youngest son, Louis. Mr Bouygues suggested to Mr Sarkozy that he ought to ban advertising on TF1's rival stations in the public sector, which was done in January. Laurent Solly, who was deputy director of Mr Sarkozy's presidential campaign, is now number two at TF1. Last year, TF1 sacked Patrick Poivre d'Arvor, the station's star presenter for the previous 21 years. Poivre had angered Mr Sarkozy by saying he "acted like a little boy" at a G8 summit. He was replaced by Laurence Ferrari. Mr Sarkozy reportedly told Mr Bouygues he wanted to see the young blonde on the news.

Software

Submission + - Chandler PIM reaches 1.0, loses financial support (chandlerproject.org)

TuringTest writes: I was surprised to learn that Chandler, the open-source Personal Information Manager (covered on Slashdot after releasing some stable versions), has silently reached its 1.0 milestone this summer only to (or maybe because of) having its financial support removed at the end of 2008. Chandler inherits organization concepts from Lotus Agenda and is a brainchild of Mitch Kapor (of Firefox, EFF and Lotus fame). It shares an approach to unified information representation with recent PIMs like MIT's Haystack and KDE's Nepomuk. What happened to the persistent universal data storage that object-oriented desktops and metadata filesystems were never able to provide? Did it finally arrive as a userland application, and nobody cared?
Linux Business

Submission + - Samba Success in the Enterprise?

gunnk writes: "We've deployed a Samba server here to replace some aging Novell Netware boxes. It works great: fast, secure, stable. However, we have one VIP that feels that Samba is "amateur" software and that we should be buying Windows servers. I've been searching with little success for large Samba deployments in enterprise environments. Anyone out there care to share stories of places that are happily running large Samba installations for their file servers? Or not so happy, for that matter — better to be informed!"
Microsoft

Submission + - iowaconsumercase archive disappered

jbrax writes: Microsoft's dirty tricks archive seems to have vanished.

The Register: Plaintiffs maintained a website at iowaconsumercase.org, which included daily media updates, full transcripts of the previous day's proceedings, and an archive of some 2,000 exhibits of alleged misdeeds going back to the 1980s.

The website is now password-protected. Microsoft's own archive of exhibits and transcripts has similarly disappeared. Microsoft maintains a comprehensive record of its antitrust proceedings, making Comes a notable absence.
Announcements

Submission + - Merck HIV vaccine trial begins in South Africa

Neme$y$ writes: The BBC reports that "An international team of researchers, led by experts from the US, will oversee the trial of the vaccine, created by the drug company Merck.". According to CBC News : The study is a "test of concept" trial that will help researchers determine if the vaccine prevents HIV infections, results in lower HIV levels in those who become infected after vaccination or both. "South Africa is an excellent location for this trial due to the high levels of infection coupled with the good clinical infrastructure, including internationally recognized immunology laboratories, a well-established national vaccine initiative and experience in running clinical trials," said James Kublin, M.D., M.P.H., one of study's lead investigators, along with Glenda Gray, MBBCH, FCPaeds (SA), of the Perinatal HIV Research Unit, University of the Witwatersrand, based at the Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital in Soweto. A more detailed explanation here.
Biotech

Submission + - Obesity linked to gut bacterial population

krishn_bhakt writes: "Joel Elmquist (The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, USA), a Physiology Faculty 1000 Member, comments "This is one of the most provocative papers to be published in the field of obesity research in some time. The evidence provided in this paper demonstrates that obese and non-obese mice have alterations in bacterial populations that apparently affect energy availability and utilization and the body weight of the host."

The nature article is available at http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v444/n7122/ab s/nature05414.html ."
Biotech

Submission + - Neural "extention chord" developed

moon_monkey writes: Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania have developed a 'neural extention chord' by growing neurons attached to a microchip. The chord is made by gradually moving two batches of neurons apart, as they naturally grow towards one another. This biological 'data cable' could then naturally interface with the brain once implanted, the researchers say.
Businesses

Submission + - Whatever happened to Aerogel?

BK117 writes: "When I first saw the news releases for this amazing material (in the early 1990's) they said it would revolutionize refrigerators, hot water heaters and many other devices needing lightweight insulation. Well, I have yet to see any consumer-level appliances using aerogels. Why not?"
Handhelds

Submission + - OpenMoko Schedule Announced

levell writes: "The schedule for the OpenMoko Open source, Linux based Neo1973 smart phone was posted to the community mailing list by Sean Moss-Pultz this morning. On Feb 11, free phones will be sent to key community developers and the community websites/wiki/bug tracker will be available. Then on March 11 ("official developer launch") we'll be able to buy an OpenMoko for $350 (+p&p) (worldwide from openmoko.com). After allowing some time for innovative, slick software to be created there will be a "Mass market launch" at which point Sean hopes that "your mom and dad will want one too"."
KDE

Submission + - KDE on Windows

AlanS2002 writes: "This week's KDE Commit Digest tells about an installer for KDE on Windows and the problems the developers encountered setting up a working environment for KDE to run on. Many screenshots included, showing the first applications (such as Konqueror) running natively."

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