mpapet writes: Get ready for another expansion of corporate media powers with the "Stop Online Piracy Act." The bill is another try at expanding the control of the Internet to corporations. -Corporations can create and enforce nationwide DNS blacklists. -Allows the government to deny the use of anti-censorship software. The best for last: -Unspecified copyright violations related to Internet activities will be classified as felonies.
mpapet writes: Last Friday, the FCC granted media conglomerates the right to remotely control media outputs in consumer's homes. Previously, the FCC prohibits the use of so-called "selectable output control" technology. This prohibition allowed consumers to record media for their personal use. Like the DMCA, this is another step forward towards eliminating an individual's control over any media content.
mpapet writes: Beyond the simpler questions of physical access control, connectivity, and power redundancy/capacity and SLA review, what other questions are important to ask when evaluating a data center?
mpapet writes: The Obama administration is taking the health care fight to the streets. The Whitehouse has a new email address to submit suspicious facts regarding the health care debate. "If you get an email or see something on the web about health insurance reform that seems fishy, send it to email@example.com."
mpapet writes: "In a story that should suprise no one, the Los Angeles Times reports Maryland State Police undercover troopers categorized pacifists, nuns, Democratic party members and others as terrorists. Their information was then shared with about 6 local and federal agencies. The undercover agent wrote the following regarding one of the individuals, "involved in puppet making and allows anarchists to utilize her property for meetings." I for one never saw this coming...."
mpapet writes: "The always informative financial blog Calculated Risk is one of many blogs posting the draft text of the legislation posing as an economic rescue package for the financial system. The urgency attached to the bill should be a clue that there is probably much more to the bill than just stabilizing the American economic system.
The Treasury Secretary can use its powers at any time during or after today's crisis. If this were simply about mortgages, then it is still a massive expansion of government powers with almost no oversight and a 700 billion dollar budget. Contact your representatives and demand more transparency and limited powers before $700+ billion walks out the door.
1. Treasury Secretary is awarded unlimited powers to enter into contract and explicitly excludes itself from all contract regulations.
2. Treasury Secretary is authorized to purchase all mortgage-related assets as he sees fit
3. The Treasury Secretary has open-ended access with no oversight to the funds to continue to prop up American assets up to 700 billion dollars at any one time.... This appears to be an end-run around capping the bailout just as long as the number on any given day does not exceed $700 billion.
4. Furthermore all of the Treasury Secretary's actions regarding mortgage-related assets are non-reviewable, based entirely on his own discretion, and have no other oversight, only after-the-fact reporting.
5. Designate the remaining financial institutions as financial agents of the U.S. Treasury. The cost to the taxpayer for services rendered by some of the institutions that started this mess is never discussed or accounted for. How this would work out remains secret as Treasury Secretary has unlimited contracting powers with no oversight.
6. Uncap the amount of public debt allowed to a staggering 11 trillion dollars.
Gold hawks and conspiracy theorists please keep the discussion on topic."
mpapet writes: I live in a typical suburban neighborhood where it would be quite economical and well within my capabilities for me to provide Internet access to my neighbors. Except the problem I have is figuring out how to get neighbors connected to my data pipe.
Running an outdoor cat5 has multiples of low wife-acceptance factor (WAF) and isn't really expandable. It's easy to imagine my setup would rely on wireless, but I don't have any clear sense of how to scale it to maybe 10 houses or what kind of stuff to use.
What technology would you recommend?
mpapet writes: "Groklaw has an analysis of the contract Linspire signed with Microsoft. "Pretend you are using Microsoft software instead of GPL'd software. Don't think. Don't modify. Don't share. Don't explore. Don't improve. Don't innovate. Don't distribute. Don't sublicense. Don't do "unauthorized" things. Don't do nuttin' or you might get sued." That's just an excerpt from the summary of Microsoft's latest Trojan horse for Linux businesses.
mpapet writes: Debian's code name Etch (testing) has announced RC1. According to the announcement, the release is about 3 months behind schedule. To quote "Nevertheless, it would not be possible to release etch on the original target date while also meeting the Debian community's expectations of quality."
mpapet writes: According to the Debian Weekly News dated Oct 30th, the Dunc-Tank project where funds are raised for Debian Project Managers appears to be a factor slowing the release of Sid.
Debian developer Jörg Jaspert posted this opinion of the Dunc-Tank project that was signed by several other Debian devs. The summary:
"So, to summarize DTs effects on Debian: It has demotivated a lot of
people who now either resigned, simply stopped doing (parts of their)
Debian work or are doing a lot less than they did before DT was
started. The freeze got delayed and getting the release out on schedule
has become nearly impossible. We are unable to see any good virtue in
There are a number of other very interesting comments regarding Dunc-Tank in the post making it a very worthwhile read.
Microsoft can eliminate the diversity of Linux-distros and swiftly end any hint of competition from Linux distros whenever they are ready. DSL, Slackware, Debian, Mandriva, Freespire, Mepis, are just a few popular distros (http://www.distrowatch.com) that I seriously doubt have the legal resources to go even one round in court.
What's YOUR idea to defuse the Microsoft's threat?
mpapet writes: According to WINE developer Tom Wickline, the Microsoft/Novell deal for Suse support controls commercial customers use of Free Software.
Is this the end of commercial OSS developers who are not a part of the Microsoft/Suse pact?
More details at the reg.