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 #420 Period ending 9 October 2011

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

A number of threads this week, including more on the looming boot lockout, and Motorola being sued for patent infringement and an interesting article on xvid. RMS' (short, not particularly noteworthy) comments on Steve Jobs have generated controversy.

Check my Posts on Authorization in AU/iiNet:

*From my blog:

Verbatim distribution with attribution ok.

Other distribution - email me.



Brendan Scott

Open Source Law

***** Open Standards/ODF

Flash's departure clears way for format stand-off

Here's the problem: while Microsoft and Apple's browsers will be supporting the

Spreadsheets Come to ODF as Version 1.2 Wins Approval

The ODF 1. 2 specification, which aims to perfect the spreadsheet workflow, has been approved by the members of the Organization for the Advancement of Structured Information Standards (OASIS).

***** Off Topic

Innovation Starvation

Privacy for the people: Wall Street protesters use app Vibe to communicate anonymously

The "Vibe" app allows users to post tweet-like messages to other users' mobile phones without revealing their identities, as no registration is required.

***** Government/Policy

Premier League games can be shown on foreign decoders

The ECJ now says national laws which prohibit the import, sale or use of foreign decoder cards are contrary to the freedom to provide services. [duh]

Australia reviews tier-two software patents,australia-reviews-tier-two-software-patents.aspx

The Federal Government may consider excluding software from its second-tier patent system to better align Australian patents with those of trading partners like Japan and Korea.

Wikipedia shuts Italy site to protest Berlusconi "gag law"

Wikipedia has disabled its Italian website in protest against a privacy law drafted by Silvio Berlusconi's government which would impose new restrictions on newspapers and Internet pages and curb police wiretaps.

The Story Behind This American Life's 'When Patents Attack'

...Alex originally intended it to be a short segment on this crazy idea of "patent trolls," with the idea of having a patent troll discuss why they do what they do. But, from there, the story kept getting more interesting -- especially after Intellectual Ventures simply could not credibly point to a single situation in which they'd helped to better society by helping bring new products to life or even of any inventors who they'd helped, beyond just getting their patents into litigation.

Brazil to debate 'anti-ACTA' bill, defying US

An English translation of the bill can be found here, but key provisions include protection of net neutrality and the privacy and personal data of individuals - directly contrary to the carte blanche given by ACTA for copyright holders to demand traffic logs from ISPs to identify alleged offenders.

Olson TZ database shut down by copyright case

A civil suit was filed on September 30 in federal court in Boston; I'm a defendant; the case involves the time zone database.

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

No Android Settlement in the Cards for JavaOne

To date, no settlement has been reached though the two Larry's have met several times. The two companies are still in a mediation phase, but it's unclear and I think unlikely that a deal will now be reached before JavaOne starts on October 2nd.

US signs ACTA

The United States, Australia, Canada, Japan, Morocco, New Zealand, Singapore, and South Korea signed the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement on Saturday, an accord targeting intellectual property piracy.

Argument preview: Copyright and the public domain

US Supreme Court rules downloading music is not a public performance

The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) argued that downloading music legally constitutes a public performance, thereby allowing it to collect royalties. The US Supreme Court ruled that ASCAP's interpretation of a section of the Copyright Act was incorrect.

Innovatio’s Infringement Suit Rampage Expands To Corporate Hotels

NinjaVideo Founder Pleads Guilty in Virginia to Criminal Copyright Conspiracy

Hana A. Beshara, 29, of Las Vegas, pleaded guilty today for her role in founding NinjaVideo. net, a website that provided millions of users with the ability to illegally download infringing copies of copyright-protected movies and television programs in high-quality formats.

Samsung to Seek Ban on Apple iPhone 4S in France, Italy

Samsung Electronics Co. said it will try to stop the sale of Apple Inc. 's iPhone 4S in France and Italy, aiming to use publicity over the device's introduction as leverage against Apple in a broader fight over the design of smartphones and tablet computers.

Sarnoff: Derivation and Prior Art Problems with the New Patent Act

Key Case Involving Apple, Google And App Developers Gets New Judge [Lodsys v. Combay]

In the latest twist, the case has a new judge. U. S. District Judge T. John Ward is stepping down from the bench to join the law firm of his son, T. Johnny Ward Jr. , an East Texas attorney who has obtained multi-million dollar patent verdicts against large technology companies.

Motorola Faces New Lawsuit

***** Applications/Gadgets

Puppet Enterprise 2.0 Expands Configuration Management

With the new Puppet 2. 0 Enterprise Release, Puppet Labs, the lead commercial sponsor of Puppet, is aiming to further accelerate Puppet adoption with improved usability and provisioning capabilities.

NETGEAR Improves Access and Security in Network Appliance (Linux Powered!)

The UTM9S is a modular hardware appliance that allows small business to swap new modules into the device that can provide additional capabilities. Under the hood, the UTM9S uses Cavium processors and a hardened Linux operating system.

Review: Minus Desktop Application for Linux

Minus is a free service that lets you share files easily with your friends and family. Its goal is to make file sharing as simple as possible by allowing users to upload and share their files from anywhere, be it mobile, desktop, or web.

Google open sources JavaScript testing tools

Google is open sourcing one of its key JavaScript testing tools in an effort to get developers to speed up web applications.

Samsung Compares Galaxy S II to Apple's New iPhone

Samsung countered this week's iPhone 4S announcement by proclaiming that its Android-based Galaxy S II is superior to the Apple device in many ways, especially with a bigger screen size.

IPFire open source firewall gets ARM port

***** Reports

Red Hat engineer renews attack on Windows 8-certified secure boot

A senior Red Hat engineer has lashed back at Microsoft's attempt to downplay concerns that upcoming secure boot features will make it impossible to install Linux on Windows 8 certified systems.

RMS on Steve Jobs

Steve Jobs, the pioneer of the computer as a jail made cool, designed to sever fools from their freedom, has died.

The Controversial History of Xvid

When Sigma Designs released their own MPEG-4 codec in 2002, those who were testing it discovered it seemed to have noticeably large amounts of Xvid's coding.

Linus Torvalds’s Lessons on Software Development Management

Announcing the Ubuntu App Developer site

In that regard, developer. ubuntu. com has been built upon the foundations of existing tools such as the Ubuntu Software Centre and My Apps to offer a unified and consistent journey for both open-source, non-commercial and commercial app authors.

Free Unix!

Starting this Thanksgiving I am going to write a complete Unix-compatible software system called GNU (for Gnu's Not Unix), and give it away free(1) to everyone who can use it. Contributions of time, money, programs and equipment are greatly needed.

Intel Joins Samsung for Tizen as Linux-based Meego Dies

Tizen is set to leverage HTML5 to promote the development of an open Linux-based mobile platform. The first release of Tizen is scheduled for the first quarter of 2012.

Microsoft's Samsung Android Patent Troll Win

* Was it a Linux only license? Note that in this case, Linux was only one element of the deal. The Linux only deals are sometimes between Microsoft and small companies that have little to gain by litigation

Amazon's Linux AMI is All Grown Up

The Linux AMI provides a Linux image for use on Amazon EC2, so that users have a way to get started with EC2 without having to create their own image or use one of the paid images from Red Hat or SUSE.

The Kindle Fire and the Triumph of Open Source

The Air Force's secure Linux distribution

Linux has long had a close, working relationship with governments, but Lightweight Portable Security (LPS) is the first official U. S. Linux distribution.

Mozilla is creating a 3D game engine for web browser called Gladius

Now Mozilla is getting in on the act, and has decided to work on its very own 3D browser engine called Gladius.

AirMech, New Action/RTS Hybrid Game Coming to Linux

The game has been completely made with open source tools and the developers are particularly proud of it. Gradually during the development, all closed source tools/libraries were dropped.

Sony Ericsson regrets ignoring iPhone, rags on Windows Phone

Like Motorola, Sony Ericsson is one of the few to stay Android-only. Those that have gone cross-platform have usually done so with a Microsoft licensing deal where it's presumed they get a 'discount' for using Windows Phone. Sony Ericsson hasn't struck a deal and may be pushed into paying more if it doesn't agree, although Nordberg made clear that he thought Windows Phone was inferior for now.

Linux is just good for Nokia business

So why would Nokia appear to do a 180 and try a product release based on another form of Linux, codenamed "Meltemi"? Wasn't MeeGo good enough? And what about Symbian, which Nokia just completed outsourcing development and support to Accenture?

Red Hat Buys Gluster for $136 Million

Red Hat is acquiring the privately Gluster in an all-cash deal valued at $136 million. The deal is expected to close later this month. Gluster is the lead commercial sponsor behind the open source GlusterFS filesystem. The latest GlusterFS 3. 3 release provides advances for Big Data storage like Apache Hadoop.

LibreOffice Is One

During that launch, the head of the product group promised the OSCON audience that Sun would soon turn OpenOffice. org over to a non-profit foundation. As each year passed, the community that grew around the project patiently waited for Sun to deliver on its promise. For various business reasons, it never happened, despite intensive lobbying inside Sun.

Rackspace Opens Up OpenStack With Planned Foundation, after Investing $$ Millions

Rackspace is now moving to set up an OpenStack Foundation that will be the steward of OpenStack project.

Eucalyptus Systems, Nebula and Virtual Bridges Join Linux Foundation

Ice Cream Sandwich Launch Delayed

Google and Samsung mysteriously pulled the plug Friday on the expected release of a new version of the Android operating system code named Ice Cream Sandwich (ICS).

HTC posts record profit, buoyed by sales of Android devices

Analysts tell The Wall Street Journal that HTC could gain even more market share in the smartphone market given the specifications and price point of the new iPhone 4S, which disappointed some consumers who were expecting a new hardware design.

HP Claims Someone Snuck Android Onto Its TouchPads, Opens Investigation

But rather than leaving it at that, he goes on to say that HP is launching an investigation into how Android made its way onto those tablets. He writes, "We presently believe that some person or persons unknown may have facilitated the delivery of these Android-based units strictly against the policy and authorization of HP. "

***** Snippets

A status update

CAINE 2.5 – SUPERNOVA is out!

Mozilla Proposes Half-Hearted Extended Release Cycle for Enterprises

Database Journal: Open Source Databases

Mozilla Improves Memory Usage with Firefox 7

CentOS goes continuous

[ANNOUNCE] PulseAudio 1.0

Happy Birthday LibreOffice

Facebook's Flashcache For The Linux Kernel

Firefox 7 update for 10 flaws - SSL BEAST not among them.

GNOME 3.2 Released

Linux 3.1 rc8

Should You Donate To Open Source Projects?

Open source roars on OS X Lion

Interview: Andy Spencer, developer of Aweather a meteorological data viewer

Software patents – a protection racket?

Missing the Point: Android, Linux, and a Standard Ecosystem is Back!

Announcing the release of Fedora 16 Beta!!

JavaOne 2011 Day 1

Linux 3.1 rc9

Fedora 16: Linux home for lost Ubuntu GNOMEs

What is Arduino? Learn About This Open-Source Electronics Platform

Oracle Updates Linux, Sticks with Intel and Promises Solaris

Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.2 Beta is out now

P is for… - AKA - Mark Shuttleworth names Ubuntu 12.04

Java 8 Delayed Until 2013 As Java EE and ME Push Forward

The Apache Software Foundation Announces Apache TomEE Certified as Java EE 6 Web Profile Compatible

Open Source: Niche Markets, Linux and Microsoft

Steve Jobs: an open source pioneer? You bet

Ubuntu Powers HP's Public Cloud

Why free software really isn't (and shouldn't be) free

OLPC XO-1.75 Laptop Preview
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