Brendan Scott
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The Open Source Law Weekly Digest or OSWALD first launched late in 2002. Since then it has been regularly providing updates on all things open source related. The focus of this newsletter is on business, rather than technical developments in open source. Another strong component of the newsletter is IP news, as it is of interest to me and has an effect on open source.

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OSWALD #342 Period ending 19 January 2010

OSWALD #342 Period ending 19 January 2010

Welcome to the Open Source Law Weekly Open Source Digest (OSWALD)

A jury in the OiNK torrent tracker case has unanimously found that the admin was not guilty of "Conspiracy to Defraud the music industry". The Blackboard patent case that made headlines a couple of years ago has been settled. Unfortunately they've settled by way of patent cross licence, which simply reinforces the crazy incentive to acquire patents simply to defend yourself from crazy patent suits.

Apparently, due to the failure of a DRM server, some of Microsoft's customers have, for an extended period, been unable to use the applications they paid for. Also still a fair few Apps related stories still coming out after CES.

>From my blog:

Verbatim distribution with attribution ok.

Other distribution - email me.



Brendan Scott

Open Source Law

***** Government/Policy

Linux at Bett 2010

You'll have to look hard for Open Source software at Bett 2010, but it's there all right and may even win a BETT award!

Blackboard v. Desire2Learn Is Over

Left unresolved is the larger question of the role of patents in higher education, but that is at least as much a question for the universities as it is for the vendors.

Open Norway: Norwegian Broadcasting Moves to OpenOffice and ODF

Norway's national broadcasting and TV facility NRK is intent on using the Open Document Format as a standard and is therefore changing its clients over to OpenOffice.

***** Patent/CR/DRM News+Policy

OiNK Admin Found Not Guilty, Walks Free

At the end of the two week trial the jury returned a unanimous verdict (12 to 0). Alan Ellis is not guilty of Conspiracy to Defraud the music industry. He walked out of Teesside Crown Court a free man today, his name cleared.

RIAA To FCC: Don't Block Anti-Piracy Efforts

The RIAA today (Jan. 14) filed comments to the FCC encouraging the regulatory body to keep any Net Neutrality rules it may be considering flexible enough to allow for the enforcement of anti-piracy measures. [Summary: Net Neutrality without the Neutrality]

Microsoft apologizes for, but doesn't really fix, software validation snafu

Problems with the licensing server has left some customers unable to use their apps for more than a month

Congressman Vows to Fight for Fair Use

"For over a decade, fair use has been under attack, specifically by large media companies," Rep. Mike Doyle (D-Penn) said today in a keynote address at an event hosted by the digital rights group Public Knowledge, and co-sponsored by Google (NASDAQ: GOOG), an ardent proponent of progressive Internet copyright policies.

Kodak sues Apple, RIM over cameras in phones

"We've had discussions for years with both companies in an attempt to resolve this issue amicably, and we have not been able to reach a satisfactory agreement," said Laura Quatela, Kodak's chief intellectual property officer.

2nd Circuit Reinstates Antitrust Claim Against Online Music Providers

An antitrust suit alleging price fixing by Sony BMG Music Entertainment and other producers, licensors and distributors of music on the Internet has been reinstated by a federal appeals court.

U.S. losing Right Stuff in science, engineering U.S

According to a 2010 National Science Board report, the state of science and engineering in the U. S. is still good; however, the country's lead in the number of researchers is being challenged by China. Other science and engineering indicators in the U. S. are also being challenged by Asian countries.

***** Applications/Gadgets

Another day, another SUSE/Moblin Linux netbook

Samsung also announced that they'll be releasing this Linux mix on its N127 netbook.

Open source game console --- build your own games

Based on Linux, the GP2X Wiz (nice name!) is a completely open multi-functional handheld entertainment device. The makers, GamePark Holding from Korea, say it's different than other shanzhai video game consoles in that it uses a completely "open source" approach.

Ouch: Nexus One Has Double the Termination Fees

if you purchase the phone with a T-Mobile account and cancel your service within a certain time window, not only do you pay an Early Termination Fee (ETF) to T-Mobile, you pay one to Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) as well.

Boxee opens beta to all

Android tablet and kitchen computer debut

At CES, Innovative Converged Devices (ICD) demonstrated two Android-based touchscreen computers based on Nvidia's Tegra 250 processor -- a 15. 6-inch Vega kitchen computer and a seven-inch Ultra tablet. Also at CES, ICD and T-Mobile UK announced that the latter will launch the Vega later this year in the U. K.

5 Special Devices from CES 2010 that Run on Linux

Lots of fascinating new devices were showcased during past week's Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas.

Advantech launches Core i7 flotilla

Advantech launched a flotilla of seven Linux-ready devices using Intel's new, embedded-oriented Core i7 processor.

Woz: Google's Nexus One is my favorite gadget

According to NBC Bay Area News, Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak was on the set of an education program called "NBC Class Action" when he was asked an entirely innocent question: what is youWozniak reportedly replied: "Well, it's the latest one. It's a non-Apple product, but it's a gadget that just came out yesterday."

***** Reports

The Microsoft-Linux Story As Told in the Comes Exhibits - Update

From: Bill Gates... One thing I find myself wondering about is whether we shouldn't try and make the "ACPI" extensions somehow Windows specific. It seems unfortunate if we do this work and get our partners to do the work and the result is that Linux works great without having to do the work... Or maybe we could patent something related to this.

VMware Zimbra deal - good for open source? Very Likely

Yahoo has reached an agreement to sell its open source Zimbra e-mail collaboration unit to VMware. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed, but VMware said it expects the deal to close in the first quarter of calendar 2010.

News Brief: Facebook Sponsors Apache Software Foundation

Facebook is now a gold sponsor of the ASF, contributing $40,000 per year to the open source foundation and its initiatives. Facebook uses a number of Apache technologies, including Hadoop.

Desktop Linux Market Share Will Rise, Thanks to Microsoft

Just four months after the sentencing of those men, a version of Linux aimed squarely at Chinese users of Windows has arisen. It's ironic then that as Microsoft now tries to collect on those it let pirate Windows in the past, it finds itself inadvertently pushing users over to Linux.

Year In Review

Looking forward to 2010

MySQL founder turns to China, Russia to halt Oracle

Michael Widenius, the creator of the MySQL database, said he is turning his vocal campaign against Oracle's planned takeover of Sun Microsystems to China and Russia because the European Commission appears set to clear the deal. - Reuters

***** Snippets

Mozilla tries to silence add-on developers' scream

Linux's Future: Observations by a Linux user

The future is wide open

SpringSource DM Java Server Heads to Eclipse

Tegra 2 supports Ubuntu Linux

Another Area of Linux Growth

Microsoft predicts Linux will fail mobile 'quality' test Launches New Jobs Board

Why Linux on the Desktop is Wrong

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