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Privacy

Federal Judge Says E-mail Not Protected By 4th Amendment 451

DustyShadow writes "In the case In re United States, Judge Mosman ruled that there is no constitutional requirement of notice to the account holder because the Fourth Amendment does not apply to e-mails under the third-party doctrine. 'When a person uses the Internet, the user's actions are no longer in his or her physical home; in fact he or she is not truly acting in private space at all. The user is generally accessing the Internet with a network account and computer storage owned by an ISP like Comcast or NetZero. All materials stored online, whether they are e-mails or remotely stored documents, are physically stored on servers owned by an ISP. When we send an e-mail or instant message from the comfort of our own homes to a friend across town the message travels from our computer to computers owned by a third party, the ISP, before being delivered to the intended recipient. Thus 'private' information is actually being held by third-party private companies."" Updated 2:50 GMT by timothy: Orin Kerr, on whose blog post of yesterday this story was founded, has issued an important correction. He writes, at the above-linked Volokh Conspiracy, "In the course of re-reading the opinion to post it, I recognized that I was misreading a key part of the opinion. As I read it now, Judge Mosman does not conclude that e-mails are not protected by the Fourth Amendment. Rather, he assumes for the sake of argument that the e-mails are protected (see bottom of page 12), but then concludes that the third party context negates an argument for Fourth Amendment notice to the subscribers."
GUI

What Will Linux Be Capable Of, 3 Years Down the Road? 679

An anonymous reader writes "In a prediction of the open-source future, InfoWeek speculates on What Linux Will Look Like In 2012. The most outlandish scenario foresees Linux forsaking its free usage model to embrace more paid distros where you get free Linux along with (much-needed) licenses to use patent-restricted codecs. Also predicted is an advance for the desktop based on — surprise — good acceptance for KDE 4. Finally, Linux is seen as making its biggest imprint not on the PC, but on mobile devices, eventually powering 40 million smartphones and netbooks. Do you agree? And what do you see for Linux in 4 years?"
Republicans

Sen. Ted "Tubes" Stevens Is Indicted 553

Many readers are letting us know about the indictment of Sen. Ted Stevens on seven counts of making false statements on his financial disclosure forms. We discussed the raid on the senator's house a while back. Everyone's favorite technologically challenged senator is the longest-serving Republican in the history of the upper house. An Alaskan paper gives deep background on the probe that has ensnared Stevens and a number of other Alaska political figures.
Privacy

Sandvine CEO Says Internet Monitoring a Necessity 171

Khalid Baheyeldin writes in with a CBC interview with the CEO of Sandvine, Dave Caputo (bio here). Sandvine is the Waterloo, Ontario-based company that provides the technology that Comcast and other ISPs use to overrule Net neutrality by, for example, injecting RST packets to disrupt Bittorrent traffic. Caputo says, among other things, that Internet monitoring is a necessity. Some of the comments to the interview are more tech-savvy than the interviewee comes across.
Music

Prince DMCAs YouTube To Block Radiohead Song 296

Enigma2175 writes "CNN is reporting that videos from the Coachella music festival showing Prince covering Radiohead's 'Creep' have been removed by Prince's label, NPG records. Thom Yorke of Radiohead, when told of Prince's action, said 'Well, tell him to unblock it. It's our... song.' No comment from YouTube or Prince yet. Under the DMCA, YouTube is not required to verify the entity making a request is actually the copyright holder and this seems to be just another example of DMCA abuse." As the article points out, Prince seems to have a love-hate relationship with the Interwebs.
Windows

Ballmer Says Vista Selling Really Well 692

An anonymous reader writes "Steve Ballmer is in no way disappointed with Windows Vista. It is selling 'incredibly well,' he told a press conference in Herzeliya, Israel today. 'Vista sells on almost 100 per cent of all the new consumer PCs around the world,' the Microsoft CEO proclaimed. He added that the operating system was also selling on '45 percent of all of new business PCs.' Which is enlightening, since business users are about the only buyers of new PCs that get a choice." Anyone know anybody who bought Vista except as bundled with hardware?
The Almighty Buck

Carl Icahn Takes on Yahoo's Board 279

narramissic and several others have written to point out that Carl Icahn has initiated a proxy battle with Yahoo's board of directors over their rejection of Microsoft's bid for the company in February. Icahn has purchased millions of Yahoo shares over the past week and assembled a group of nine other investors (including Mark Cuban) to persuade the board to resume talks with Microsoft. Yahoo remains unimpressed. Icahn's letter to Yahoo accuses: "It is unconscionable that you have not allowed your shareholders to choose to accept an offer that represented a 72% premium over Yahoo's closing price of $19.18 on the day before the initial Microsoft offer. I and many of your shareholders strongly believe that a combination between Yahoo and Microsoft would form a dynamic company and more importantly would be a force strong enough to compete with Google on the Internet."
Hardware

New President for OLPC Organization 251

haroldag writes "After Walter Bender's resignation as president of OLPC, Charles Kane enters to take his place as the new boss. Kane says 'The OLPC mission is a great endeavor, but the mission is to get the technology in the hands of as many children as possible. Whether that technology is from one operating system or another, one piece of hardware or another, or supplied or supported by one consulting company or another doesn't matter. It's about getting it into kids' hands. Anything that is contrary to that objective, and limits that objective, is against what the program stands for.'"
The Internet

AT&T Claims Internet to Reach Capacity in 2010 239

An anonymous reader writes "CNET News has a piece in which AT&T claims that the Internet's bandwidth will be saturated by video-on-demand and such by 2010. Says the AT&T VP: 'In three years' time, 20 typical households will generate more traffic than the entire Internet today.' Similarly: 'He claimed that the "unprecedented new wave of broadband traffic" would increase 50-fold by 2015 and that AT&T is investing $19 billion to maintain its network and upgrade its backbone network.'"
Space

Obama Would Redirect NASA Funding to Education 357

QuantumG writes "In a recent article on The Space Review, Greg Zsidisin reveals that Barack Obama plans to delay Project Constellation for at least five years, using the redirected funds to nationalize early-education for children under five years old to prepare them for the rigors of kindergarten and beyond, if he is elected president. It is feared that if this happens the Vision for Space Exploration will flounder and that may be the end of human spaceflight altogether."
The Courts

Lecture Notes Considered Infringement 385

I Don't Believe in Imaginary Property writes "According to a new lawsuit, taking notes in class is copyright infringement. Of course, it's not quite that simple. The professor is partnered with an E-book maker that wants to sell the material themselves, and the people taking notes pay students to take good ones, then sell copies to everyone else. But that just means that the case will hinge upon whether or not lecture notes are fair use. Either way, I wonder how long it will be before you will have to sign a EULA whenever you walk into class"
Censorship

Johns Hopkins Bows To USAID Censorship Push 122

An anonymous reader sends us to Wired's Threat Level blog for news that the federally funded Popline database at Johns Hopkins University, said to be the largest source of information on reproductive health, has begun censoring searches that contain the word "abortion." Apparently they took this stop due to pressure from USAID, the federal agency that provides foreign aid to developing nations. From Wired: "Under a Reagan-era policy revived by President Bush in 2001, USAID denies funding to non-governmental organizations that perform abortions, or that 'actively promote abortion as a method of family planning in other nations.' A librarian at the University of California at San Francisco noticed the new censorship on Monday, while carrying out a routine research request on behalf of academics and researchers at the university. The search term had functioned properly as of January. Puzzled, she contacted the manager of the database,... who replied in an April 1st e-mail that the university had recently begun blocking the search term because the database received federal funding."
Hardware Hacking

Creative Goes After Driver Modder 385

FreedomFighter writes "Since the release of Windows Vista, Creative has promised their Sound Cards as being 'Vista Ready'. Unfortunately, as many unlucky customers did discover, this is not true. What the users actually found were buggy, feature crippled drivers. Creative insisted that features such as Decoding of Dolby® Digital and DTS(TM) signals and DVD-Audio which worked fine in WinXP, would not work on windows Vista. With Creative releasing less than one new driver a year, things seemed bleak. Fortunately, a talented user, Daniel_K, was recently able to 'fix' many of the drivers, enabling the incompatible features and also fixing many bugs. Just today Creative has decided to put a stop to this. They removed all links to his modified drivers, and banned several users who were posting links to the now banned drivers."
Microsoft

What Spooks Microsoft's Chief Security Advisor 136

alphadogg writes "Microsoft's U.S. general manager/chief security advisor for its National Security Team, Bret Arsenault, thinks like a true security professional. In every bit of good news, he wonders what bad news could be coming. Application security, virtualization security and the fact that over half of computer attacks seen by Microsoft come from the .edu domain are just some of the things keeping him up at night."
Microsoft

ODF Editor Says ODF Loses If OOXML Does 268

An anonymous reader writes "The editor of the Open Document Format standard has written a letter (PDF) that strongly supports recognizing Microsoft's OOXML file format as a standard, arguing that if it fails, ODF will suffer. 'As the editor of OpenDocument, I want to promote OpenDocument, extol its features, urge the widest use of it as possible, none of which is accomplished by the anti-OpenXML position in ISO,' Patrick Durusau wrote. 'The bottom line is that OpenDocument, among others, will lose if OpenXML loses... Passage of OpenXML in ISO is going to benefit OpenDocument as much as anyone else.'"

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