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Submission + - Is the Second Life backlash gaining momentum?

An anonymous reader writes: InformationWeek, which until now has been writing worshipful fanboy praise of Second Life, gripes about some of its problems in three articles posted today. Mitch Wagner, who's been Info Week's head SL cheerleader, writes: "You ever have the experience of moving to a new city — a great city, like New York, Los Angeles, Paris, or London? For a couple of months, just walking down the street is magic, but then one day you wake up and, well, you notice the uncollected trash and the panhandlers and the fact that public transit is never on time. You still love it there, but you also wish that your bus stop didn't smell like pee. That's kind of where I am with Second Life." A second articke, "Bugs And Unstable Code Threaten Second Life's Future" describes a user petition drive to get Linden Lab to fix some of the service's worst bugs before the whole thing collapses. And Info Week also takes Linden Lab to task for promoting misleading usage stats.. Is the Second Life backlash gaining momentum?

Submission + - SCO continues its pattern of dubious claims

An anonymous reader writes: SCO claims exclusive license to the UNIX trademark, but The Open Group, which owns the trademark, says very specifically that other licensees (including IBM) have the right to use the mark in connection with their products.

It should also be interesting for those of you following SCO v. World that The Open Group holds not only the trademark, but also the rights to specify and publish specifications for the UNIX system. It gained this right from Novell around the same time the source code of the SVR4 implementation went to SCO. Some of SCO's claims that have yet to be tossed rest on the idea that things like file names, names of constants, and such within SVR4 are SCO's property. It's odd that it could be SCO's property when it's a freely licensed standard published by the group that bought that very right separate from what SCO bought.

SCO's claims so far have not held up well. They're down from claims against IBM of millions of lines of code, methods, concepts, and patents being misappropriated wholesale to arguing whether "#define EPERM 1" is copyrightable. The Daimler-Chrysler case has already closed with the dismissal of the last pending claim. It seems now that, with multiple cases partly or completely on hold for the outcome of the Novell case, that SCO's time may finally be drawing short.
United States

Submission + - Uncle Sam spoils dream trip to space

gollum123 writes: "Brian Emmett's childhood fantasy came true when he won a free trip to outer space ( .ap/index.html ). But the 31-year-old was crushed when he had to cancel his reservation because of Uncle Sam. Emmett won his ticket to the stars in a 2005 sweepstakes by Oracle Corp., in which he answered a series of online questions on Java computer code. For the self-described space buff who has attended space camp and watched shuttle launches from Kennedy Space Center, it seemed like a chance to become an astronaut on a dime. Then reality hit. After some number-crunching, Emmett realized he would have to report the $138,000 galactic joy ride as income and owe $25,000 in taxes. Unwilling to sink into debt, the software consultant from the San Francisco Bay area gave up his seat. Since the Internal Revenue Service requires winnings from lottery drawings, TV game shows and other contests to be reported as taxable income, tax experts contend there's no such thing as a free spaceflight. Some contest sponsors provide a check to cover taxes, but that income is also taxable."
GNU is Not Unix

Submission + - Doom fans petition Raven for GPL Hexen source

sfraggle writes: "Doomworld is reporting about a group of Doom enthusiasts petitioning Raven to GPL the source code to Heretic and Hexen. Although the source code was released several years ago, the license is so restrictive as to be next to useless. Now over 30 programmers working with projects derived from the Doom source have drafted an open letter to Raven in the hopes of getting the source finally re-released under the GPL. The letter is backed by a petition signed by over 300 people."
User Journal

Submission + - Valentine's Day on a Dime

NewsToob writes: "Managing to make it through the Christmas holidays with a new girl on your arm can be difficult, especially if her family was involved. Talk about pressure to perform! You might think your home free, but did you realize that Valentine's Day (VD) is February 14th, again! I know what you're thinking. This has to be some kind of cruel joke, right? The holidays are over and you are strapped for cash money, that holiday credit card bill just came in the mail, and guess what, it's time to shell out some serious coin for your honey on VD! Here are NewsToob's 5 tips to help you make your new girl feel like the one for not a lot of loot. Read more. "

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