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Cellphones

NTSB Recommends Cell Phone Ban For Drivers 938

ducomputergeek writes "According to this AP report, the National Transportation Safety Board says 'States should ban all driver use of cell phones and other portable electronic devices, except in emergencies.' 'The recommendation, unanimously agreed to by the five-member board, applies to both hands-free and hand-held phones and significantly exceeds any existing state laws restricting texting and cellphone use behind the wheel.' So what about all the cars today that come with built-in computers, navigation, internet capabilities, and cell phones?"
Biotech

US District Judge Rules Gene Patents Invalid 263

shriphani writes "A US judge has ruled that Myriad Genetics' breast cancer gene patent is invalid. Hopefully this will go a long way in ensuring that patents on genes do not stand in the way of research. From the article: 'Patents on genes associated with hereditary breast and ovarian cancer are invalid, ruled a New York federal court today. The precedent-setting ruling marks the first time a court has found patents on genes unlawful and calls into question the validity of patents now held on approximately 2,000 human genes.'"
The Courts

Apple Loses Aussie Trademark Complaint Over "i" Name 177

CuteSteveJobs writes "Apple has been dealt a severe blow having been told that it no longer has a monopoly on the letter 'i' for product naming. IP Australia, the government body that oversees trademark applications, rejected Apple's complaint against a company selling 'DOPi' laptop bags. Last year Australian computer company Macpro Computers claimed that after 26 years of flying its own Macpro brand that Apple was 'trying to burn us out' with legal fees. This was after Apple released its own Macpro line 3½ years ago. Apple lost that complaint, but is appealing. Last year Apple went after supermarket Woolworths complaining their new logo which featured a 'W' fashioned into the shape of an apple. (Woolworths sells real apples.)"
Earth

Utah Assembly Passes Resolution Denying Climate Change 787

cowtamer writes "The Utah State Assembly has passed a resolution decrying climate change alarmists and urging '...the United States Environmental Protection Agency to immediately halt its carbon dioxide reduction policies and programs and withdraw its "Endangerment Finding" and related regulations until a full and independent investigation of climate data and global warming science can be substantiated.' Here is the full text of H.J.R 12." The resolution has no force of law. The Guardian article includes juicy tidbits from its original, far more colorful, version.
The Courts

Landmark Ruling Gives Australian ISPs Safe Harbor 252

omnibit writes "Today, the Federal Court of Australia handed down its ruling in favor of the country's third largest ISP, iiNet. The case was backed by some of the largest media companies, including 20th Century Fox and Warner Bros. They accused iiNet of approving piracy by ignoring thousands of infringement notices. Justice Cowdroy said that the 'mere provision of access to internet is not the means to infringement' and 'copyright infringement occurred as result of use of BitTorrent, not the Internet... iiNet has no control over BitTorrent system and [is] not responsible for BitTorrent system.' Many Internet providers had been concerned that an adverse ruling would have forced themselves to police Internet traffic and comply with the demands of copyright owners without any legislative or judicial oversight."
GUI

GNOME 3 Delayed Until September 2010 419

supersloshy writes "Contrary to popular opinion, GNOME 3 will not be released in March next year. It has been delayed until September 2010, six months later. According to the news message, this is because 'our community wants GNOME 3.0 to be fully working for users and why we believe September is more appropriate.' GNOME 3's main goal is to re-define the ways people interact with the desktop, mainly through a new UI design (currently called 'GNOME Shell'), while GNOME 2.30, set for release in March, will have a focus on being stable. An early visual tour of GNOME 3 has been posted at Digitizor."
The Internet

1Mb Broadband Access Becomes Legal Right In Finland 875

An anonymous reader writes "Starting next July, every person in Finland will have the right to a one-megabit broadband connection, according to the Ministry of Transport and Communications. Finland is the world's first country to create laws guaranteeing broadband access. The Finnish people are also legally guaranteed a 100Mb broadband connection by the end of 2015."
Security

Washington Post Says Use Linux To Avoid Bank Fraud 422

christian.einfeldt writes "Washington Post Security Fix columnist Brian Krebs recommends that banking customers consider using a Linux LiveCD, rather than Microsoft Windows, to access their on-line banking. He tells a story of two businesses that lost $100K and $447K, respectively, when thieves — armed with malware on the company controller's PC — were able to intercept one of the controller's log-in codes, and then delay the controller from logging in. Krebs notes that he is not alone in recommending the use of non-Windows machines for banking; The Financial Services Information Sharing and Analysis Center, an industry group supported by some of the world's largest banks, recently issued guidelines urging businesses to carry out all online banking activities from 'a stand-alone, hardened, and completely locked down computer system from where regular e-mail and Web browsing [are] not possible.' Krebs concludes his article with a link to an earlier column in which he steps readers through the process of booting a Linux LiveCD to do their on-line banking." Police in Australia offer similar advice, according to an item sent in by reader The Mad Hatterz: "Detective Inspector Bruce van der Graaf from the Computer Crime Investigation Unit told the hearing that he uses two rules to protect himself from cybercriminals when banking online. The first rule, he said, was to never click on hyperlinks to the banking site and the second was to avoid Microsoft Windows."
GNU is Not Unix

London Stock Exchange Rejects .NET For Open Source 498

ChiefMonkeyGrinder writes "This summer, the London Stock Exchange decided to move away from its Microsoft .Net-based trading platform, TradElect. Instead, they'll be using the GNU/Linux-based MillenniumIT system. The switch is a pretty savage indictment of the costs of a complex .Net system. The GNU/Linux-based software is also faster, and offers several other major benefits. The details provide some fascinating insights into the world of very high performance — and very expensive — enterprise systems. ... [R]ather than being just any old deal that Microsoft happened to lose, this really is something of a total rout, and in an extremely demanding and high-profile sector. Enterprise wins for GNU/Linux don't come much better than this."
Security

Australian ISPs Asked To Cut Off Malware-Infected PCs 286

bennyboy64 writes "Australia's Internet Industry Association has put forward a new code of conduct that suggests ISPs contact, and in some cases disconnect, customers that have malware-infected computers. 'Once an ISP has detected a compromised computer or malicious activity on its network, it should take action to address the problem. ISPs should therefore attempt to identify the end user whose computer has been compromised, and contact them to educate them about the problem,' the new code states. The code won't be mandatory, but it's expected the ISP industry will take it up if they are to work with the Australian Government in preventing the many botnets operating in Australia."
Microsoft

Submission + - New York Times Dropping Silverlight for Flash (infoq.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Another one bites the dust. After the news of Major League Baseball dropping Silverlight and switching to Adobe Flash (link) here comes another bad news for Microsoft: The New York Times is also dropping Silverlight and replacing it with Flash. The timing couldn't be worse as Microsoft was just promoting its New York Times Silverlight Kit. The reasons:

Silverlight version has been plagued with problems, both political and technical. The biggest hurdle was the lack of cross-platform support.


Networking

Australia To Build Fiber-To-the-Premises Network 300

candiman writes "The Australian PM, Kevin Rudd, has just announced that none of the private sector submissions to build a National Broadband Network was up to the standard, so instead the government is going to form a private company to build a fiber to the premises network. The network will connect to 90% of premises delivering 100Mb/s. The remaining 10% will be reached with wireless and satellite delivering up to 12Mb/s. The network cost has been estimated at 43 billion AU dollars over 8 years of construction — and is expected to employ 47,000 people at peak. It will be wholesale only and completely open access. As an Australian who voted for the other guys, all I can say is, wow."
The Internet

Freeing and Forgetting Data With Science Commons 114

blackbearnh writes "Scientific data can be both hard to get and expensive, even if your tax dollars paid for it. And if you do pay the big bucks to a publisher for access to a scientific paper, there's no assurance that you'll be able to read it, unless you've spent your life learning to decipher them. That's the argument that John Wilbanks makes in a recent interview on O'Reilly Radar, describing the problems that have led to the creation of the Science Commons project, which he heads. According to Wilbanks, scientific data should be easy to access, in common formats that make it easy to exchange, and free for use in research. He also wants to see standard licensing models for scientific patents, rather than the individually negotiated ones now that make research based on an existing patent so financially risky." Read on for the rest of blackbearnh's thoughts.
The Courts

17,000 Downloads Does Not Equal 17,000 Lost Sales 398

Andrew_Rens writes "Ars Technica has a story on a ruling by a US District Judge who rejects claims by the RIAA that the number of infringing downloads amounts to proof of the same number of lost sales. The judge ruled that 'although it is true that someone who copies a digital version of a sound recording has little incentive to purchase the recording through legitimate means, it does not necessarily follow that the downloader would have made a legitimate purchase if the recording had not been available for free.' The ruling concerns the use of the criminal courts to recover alleged losses for downloading through a process known as restitution. The judgement does not directly change how damages are calculated in civil cases."
Government

Content Filtering Pulled From Free Broadband Proposal 111

huzur79 writes "Electronista is reporting that Kevin Martin, Chairman of the FCC, has dropped the content filtering provisions from the proposal for free wireless broadband service, according to an interview with Ars Technica. Previous drafts of the plan required protection methods to prevent users from accessing objectionable content, such as pornography. 'I'm saying if this is a problem for people, let's take it away,' Martin said. The proposal has received criticism and opposition from a variety of groups including the Bush administration, wireless companies, and consumer interest organizations. T-Mobile has argued that communicating data on the allocated frequency bands will cause interference and quality degradation. Civil liberties groups argue that the FCC would overstep its authority and violate the Constitution."

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