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Submission + - Remix OS Violates the GPL and Apache Licenses

An anonymous reader writes: You may have heard recently of the Remix OS, a fork of Android that targets desktop computing. The operating system, which was created by former Google employees and features a traditional desktop layout in addition to the ability to run Android apps, was previewed on Ars Technica a few weeks ago, but it was not actually released for end-users to download until earlier this week. Now that Remix OS has been released, The Linux Homefront Project is reporting that the Android-based operating system, for which source code is not readily available, violates both the GPL and the Apache License. The RemixOS installer includes a "Remix OS USB Tool" that is really a re-branded copy of popular disk imaging tool UNetbootin, which falls under the GPL. Additionally, browsing through the install image files reveals that the operating system is based on the Apache Licensed Android-x86 project. From the article:

Output is absolutely clear – no differences! No authors, no changed files, no trademarks, just copy-paste development.

Is this a blatant disregard for the GPL and Apache licenses by an optimistic startup, or were the authors too eager to release that they forgot to provide access to the repo?

Submission + - Hacking the patent system: Open source and patents

An anonymous reader writes: In an interview with, Daniel Nazer of the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) talks patent law and its adverse effects on software development and innovation: Is there a practical way for a developer to be sure they're not infringing on a software patent?

Nazer: No.

There are approximately 400,000 software patents currently in force and about 50,000 new software patents every year. And each of these patents has multiple claims. One paper estimated that if all software firms conducted thorough patent clearance, the annual cost of that process would be greater than the market capitalization of the entire industry.

Firms can do targeted searches to try and minimize risk (looking at the patent portfolio of direct competitors, for example), but they will always be at risk of surprise patent attacks.

Submission + - Clinton Hints At Tech Industry Compromise Over Encryption (

An anonymous reader writes: At the democratic presidential debate last night, Marques Brownlee asked the candidates a pointed question about whether the government should require tech companies to implement backdoors in their encryption, and how we should balance privacy with security. The responses were not ideal for those who recognize the problems with backdoors. Martin O'Malley said that the government should have to get a warrant, but skirted the rest of the issue. Bernie Sanders said government needed to "have Silicon Valley help us" to discover information transmitted across the internet by ISIS and other terrorist organizations. He thinks we can do that without violating privacy, but didn't say how. But the most interesting comment came from Hillary Clinton. After mentioning that Obama Administration officials had "started the conversation" with tech companies on the encryption issue, one of the moderators noted that the government "got nowhere" with its requests. Clinton replied, "That is not what I've heard. Let me leave it at that." The implications of that small comment are troubling.

Submission + - Apple dismisses diversity proposal for board of directors as 'unduly burdensome' (

Mark Wilson writes: A call by shareholders to do more to increase diversity on Apple's board of directors has been soundly rejected by the company. The board is currently predominantly white and male, leading to calls for an "accelerated recruitment policy requiring Apple to increase the diversity of senior management and its board of directors".

But in a proxy statement, the board can be seen to have voted against the proposal, saying that it would be "unduly burdensome and not necessary because Apple has demonstrated to shareholders its commitment to inclusion and diversity". The result of the vote will come as something of a surprise as Tim Cook has admitted that the company has much to do to improve diversity.

Submission + - ISIS Hacktivist Targets Top Chinese University Website (

An anonymous reader writes: An individual or group claiming ties to the Islamic State has hacked into the internal network of the leading Chinese University Tsinghua, which is involved in research projects around defence and national security. Late on Sunday, some of the university’s internal website pages, used by professors and students, were erased and instead displayed hooded men on horseback carrying the group’s black and white flag, and an audio message calling for holy war against Beijing. If ISIS involvement is confirmed, this hack would be the first time that the militant group has targeted a Chinese website.

Submission + - The first "C/C++ Coding Best Practices Repository" launched (

An anonymous reader writes: There are many style guides around the web talking about the coding best practices. Some guidelines are very interesting, some others are not suitable even they are recommended by known organisations.

CoderGears just launched the C/C++ Coding Best Practices Repository to centralize the most known best practices.

The goal of the repository is to vote and comment the C/C++ coding best practices rules to have the most interesting ones and every C/C++ developer will focus more on the most voted rules.

Submission + - Edge is the default browser in Windows 10 (

Meshach writes: Chris Beard (CEO of Mozilla) sent an angry letter to Microsoft protesting how Windows 10 sets your default browser to Edge (the Internet Explorer replacement) even if you have previously set your default browser to something else. Users can customize the browser themselves but Beard says that this process is not obvious for non-tech users.

Submission + - Undergraduates Discover Densest Ultracompact Dwarf Galaxies (

Applehu Akbar writes: This discovery, using imaging data from several large telescopes, identifies two new ultracompact dwarf galaxies (UCD), M59-UCD3 and M85-HCC1.

UCDs are small galaxies that have stellar densities of, in the case of M85-HCC1, up a million times higher than Earth's stellar neighborhood. That would mean stars averaging one twentieth of a light year apart. In such a place our own Oort cloud would contain other stars.

Furthermore, these galaxies are considerably older than our own and contain an abundance of heavy elements.

Comment Re:Need to be adjustable (Score 4, Interesting) 340

Thanks to anti-worker or at best worker-apathetic politics and budget priorities, it's hard to get OSHA to force companies to even offer sufficient protection from hazardous chemicals like hexavalent chromium. The car parts factory in my town with several hundred employees on the shop floor was giving workers latex gloves and dust masks for protection while chroming bumpers until it was hit with a whopping $10,000 fine after many years.

The darkly amusing punchline to this anecdote is that the guy who owns the factory & built his fortune with it has given millions of dollars to the local university to help them put up a new building for their school of medicine.

Comment Re:Not PC (Score 2) 55

~Actually~, lazy eye is not a physical malady, but is a condition where the brain suppresses visual input from one eye, for whatever reason. Misaligned, crossed, or drifting eyes are reasons why some people develop lazy eye, but there are other causes that have nothing to do with "kinetically challenged" eyes. The misimpression that amblyopia is necessarily a physical problem is stoked by it's colloquial name "lazy eye," but humorless nerds should know better.

Comment Re:ridiculous statistic (Score 1) 55

How do you know? Are you sure you aren't confusing lazy eye (amblyopia) with some of the physical conditions that can cause lazy eye, such as crossed eyes or a drifting eye? Without looking through your classmates' medical records or personally conducting eye exams on all of them, you really have no way to know how many of them have brains that suppress vision from one eye.

Comment Re:The Brock string (Score 2) 55

Misalignment or poor coordination of the eyes (strabismus) is just one cause of lazy eye, so this therapy can help a subset of people with lazy eye. It's worth noting that drifting or crossed eyes can cause lazy eye, but lazy eye itself is an error in the way your brain processes visual information regardless of whether the cause is simply structural.

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