SgtChaireBourne writes: Julian Assange is wanted in Sweden for questioning, no formal charges have been made yet. The appearance is often otherwise due to incomplete or downright misleading information floating around. Now there is a list of 15 overlooked facts about the Assange extradition case which clears up a lot of misperceptions and disinformation.
SgtChaireBourne writes: With US Research Open Access In Peril from H.R. 3699, Bjoern Bremb's blog shows why there is no place in scholarly communication for corporate publishers. Researchers or their employers pay for everything from generating the data to writing and editing the manuscript and journals. At the other end, libraries must pay astronomical subscription fees for the same articles, effectively making institutions pay twice for the same material. There is no value added for the costs and the current publishers make enormous profits which could be used to drastically lower the price in a not-for profit model.
SgtChaireBourne writes: Just before Christmas, Sweden became the first country to officially recognize the Church of Kopimism as a religious organization. It took the Church three tries before succeeding in becoming recognized. The Church holds that information is holy and copying is a sacrament and the value multiplies through copying. Therefore, copying is central for the organization and its members. "Being recognized by the state of Sweden is a large step for all of kopimi. Hopefully, this is one step towards the day when we can live out our faith without fear of persecution," said Isak Gerson, spiritual leader of the Church.
SgtChaireBourne writes: Just before Christmas, Sweden became the first country to officially recognize the Church of Kopimism as a religious organization, founded in 2010. It took the Church three tries before succeeding in becoming recognized. The Church holds that information is holy and copying is a sacrament and the value multiplies through copying. Therefore, copying is central for the organization and its members. "Being recognized by the state of Sweden is a large step for all of kopimi. Hopefully, this is one step towards the day when we can live out our faith without fear of persecution," said Isak Gerson, spiritual leader of the Church.
SgtChaireBourne writes: On the White House's official website for petitioning the government, there is a petition to return sanity to the US software industry by overturning software patents. The petition calls for the patent office to cease issuing software patents and to void all previously issued software patents. Sign now.
SgtChaireBourne writes: Getting a Windows Refund on the unused, pre-installed operating systems used to involve a slow but well-documented and predictable checklist of actions and contacts with the original equipment manufacturer (OEM). Lately, white box systems are still rate, and new systems that don't come with either Linux or OS X pre-installed seem to be missing the EULA. In previous versions of Windows, upon first boot, there was a dialog box which asked if you agree or disagree with the EULA. The new ones seem to be missing this fairly crucial step.
Many people I am responsible for will be getting new notebooks within the next six months and the extra 150 EUR save from not bundling Windows could be put towards peripherals or better hardware.
What is the new best practice for getting a Windows refund?
SgtChaireBourne writes: The aquatic frog Barbourula kalimantanensis, found in Indonesia's Kalimantan province, has no lungs and breathes through its skin. This is the first frog species without lungs. A few species of amphibians share this trait, including a few species of salamanders and a wormlike creature known as a caecilian. It appears to have adapted to navigate cold, rapidly moving streams that are rich in oxygen, while minimizing buoyancy to avoid being swept away by the currents. (Note that the A.P. stories evaporate after a rather short while.)
SgtChaireBourne writes: "Videos from the CELF Embedded Linux Conference Europe / 9th Real-Time Linux Workshop, Linz, Austria, Nov. 2007 are now online. Boot time, real-time preemption patches, graphical libraries, and file systems for flash storage are among the topics covered. The papers are online at LinuxDevices as is the Call for Papers for the next Consumer Electronics Linux Forum (CELF) Embedded Linux Conference which will be held at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, California in April."
SgtChaireBourne writes: "NLnet, a Dutch foundation for an open information society, calls for the maker of a widely used office suite to release its depreciated formats into the public domain. The maker of the infamous productivity suits has made large efforts during the last year to move against the industry backed standard, the OpenDocument Format (ISO/IEC 26300). These efforts have been producing a lot of commentary regarding the amount of data bound up in the Redmond-based company's undocumented, proprietary, binary specifications. It's a nasty situation to end up with files that cannot be read because the sole vendor with the documentation for the files has withdrawn permission. ODF is the way forward, or a step forward at the least, with new documents. But for the old documents in the legacy formats, the cannot be read without supporting software and that support requires full access to the specifications."
SgtChaireBourne writes: A lot of the all-in-one distance education systems are expensive, poorly done, or both.
Distance education makes heavy use of text-based chat, shared whiteboards (including the ability to display PDF and OpenDocument), and conference calls with recording and playback. Many of these have been available for ages, individually, as Free or open source software.
Which F/OSS tools or components would be most suitable, either individually or combined, for distance education and why?
SgtChaireBourne writes: A group of FOSS enthusiasts making a documentary film using a collaborative, open
source-like methodology. The semi-raw footage is
in the Internet Archive in small, modular chunks for
other video enthusiasts to splice together to create a story under a Creative Commons Attribute-ShareAlike
license. Can the open
source development model be used to create a movie? The folks behind The
Digital Tipping Point (DTP) are betting it can.
and other open source software have been used in rendering farms for major
pictures like Shrek, Lord of the Rings, and many others. Earlier this
year the Blender project released Elephants Dream, the first movie
made entirely with open source graphics software. The Digital Tippingpoint is the first to try to apply the development model itself to movie production.
Because the footage is available under the CC it can used by anyone to create their own movies
or video shorts.
SgtChaireBourne writes: Trolltech has released version 4.2 of Qt, its C++ based cross-platform development toolkit. This version adds CSS-like stylesheets for the desktop, a new 2D graphics view class, Qt/Mac has improved use of native Carbon widgets. Qt is dual licensed. Source code for the GPL'd version can be downloaded for OS X, Linux or Windows.