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 #471 Period ending 9 November 2012

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

A bit... er very... late this week. I will be away next week (chasing a total eclipsein Cairns), so am trying to have a week and a half between each edition. Apple has apparently lost a case against Motorola to do with a standards essential patent (see the Apple v The World entry). HP stepping up its support for Linux. Something of particular note which hasn't seemed to have hit the news services so far is the release of open standards principles from the Cabinet office in the UK.

*From my blog:

Verbatim distribution with attribution ok.

Other distribution - email me.



***** Off Topic

Ethiopian kids hack OLPCs in 5 months with zero instruction

What the OLPC Project has realized over the last five or six years, though, is that teaching kids stuff is really not that valuable. Yes, knowing all your state capitols how to spell "neighborhood" properly and whatnot isn't a bad thing, but memorizing facts and procedures isn't going to inspire kids to go out and learn by teaching themselves, which is the key to a good education. Instead, OLPC is trying to figure out a way to teach kids to learn, which is what this experiment is all about.

***** Government/Policy

UK takes major step towards competition, innovation in software market

The UK government has released a new Open Standards policy. FSFE welcomes this document as a major step towards more competition and innovation in the UK software market

Megaupload and the Government's Attack on Cloud Computing

Yesterday, EFF, on behalf of its client Kyle Goodwin, filed a brief proposing a process for the Court in the Megaupload case to hold the government accountable for the actions it took (and failed to take) when it shut down Megaupload's service and denied third parties like Mr. Goodwin access to their property. The government also filed a brief of its own, calling for a long, drawn-out process that would require third parties—often individuals or small companies—to travel to courts far away and engage in multiple hearings, just to get their own property back.

Open source gets look in as UK government rolls out G-Cloud

Open source companies have managed to get on board the UK Government's G-Cloud supplier framework, which enables public sector bodies to access and buy services from a range of listed suppliers.

Internet-based and open source: How e-voting works around the globe

The Australian Capital Territory uses an open-source e-voting solution.

How to Use Facebook Open Sourced Data Center Design to Cut Costs

Facebook's state of the art data center in Oregon uses 38 percent less power and costs 24 percent less to run that its older data centers. These figures are astounding, and they should certainly make any cost-conscious CIO sit up and take notice.

Kim Dotcom now plans to give New Zealand free broadband pipe to US

"For every foreign user downloading from NZ (paid)," Dotcom posted on Twitter, "a Kiwi can download from outside NZ (free). The key: Storing data foreign users want in NZ. " Dotcom contends that the high-speed link would make New Zealand an attractive location for data centers; the country's current shortage of global connectivity makes it an "Internet backwater," he said.

The slow decline of PCs and the fast rise of Smartphones/Tablets was predicted in 1993

In his second last paragraph, Myhrvold predicts the winners will be those who "own the software standards on IHCs" which could be roughly equated with today's app stores, such as those on iOS (Apple), Android (Google, Amazon) and Windows 8 (Microsoft).

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

Should software patents be abolished?

The paper by two distinguished professors of economics, Michele Boldrin and David K. Levine, is titled The Case Against Patents. Boldrin and Levine review some of the lamentable realities of the U. S. patent system, including the dramatic increases in issuance of patents that block future innovation, and in the quantity and cost of patent litigation. They also point out that patents are often detrimental to consumer welfare, as once-but-no-longer innovative companies use patents to block competitors.

Apple's Arial Apology Hits the UK Newspapers

It’s a small, short, factual summary of the case in which Samsung was found not to have copied Apple’s iPad design, along with a link to the ruling we doubt anyone would bother typing in. Written in Arial.

Vringo Provides Update on I/P Engine vs. Aol, Google et al.

Today, the Court ruled that under the equitable doctrine of laches, damages should be calculated beginning on September 15, 2011, the date that I/P Engine filed its complaint. I/P Engine had previously sought to have such damages calculated from September 15, 2005.

Apple loses right to iPhone brand in Mexico

Apple has lost an injunction bid that would have allowed it to continue selling iPhone-branded products in Mexico. A court in Mexico City handed down a ruling last Thursday denying Apple's injunction request on the grounds that the iPhone brand is too phonetically similar to iFone, a brand belonging to a Mexican company that registered its name four years prior to Apple's filing for the iPhone brand mark.

FTC Staff Said to Recommend Google Patent Suit

At issue are Google’s efforts to block U. S. imports of products made by Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) and Apple Inc. (AAPL) by claiming the devices, which rely on industry-standard technology, infringe patents owned by Google’s Motorola Mobility unit, the people said.

In App Store vs. Appstore court clash, Apple runs into a skeptical judge

The Cupertino company has a more quixotic legal battle going on against its competitors, however, that has also become a bit of a war against the English language.

Let’s Limit the Effect of Software Patents, Since We Can’t Eliminate Them

My suggestion is to change the effect of patents. We should legislate that developing, distributing, or running a program on generally used computing hardware does not constitute patent infringement.

Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley Oral Arguments

Samsung v The World

A3/2012/1845(E) Samsung Electronics (UK) Limited -v- Apple INC (a company incorporated under the laws of the State of California, USA). Application of Claimant for direction. - Royal Courts of Justice Cause List

"We invented Windows 8 Tiles in the 1990s" says firm suing Microsoft

The company has just four patents, but one of them, filed in 2000 and granted in 2004, deals with a "system and method for simultaneous display of multiple information sources".

Apple to Pay VirnetX $368 Million after Losing FaceTime Lawsuit

“For years Apple refused to pay fair value for the VirnetX patents,” Doug Cawley, a lawyer with McKool Smith in Dallas who represents VirnetX, said in closing arguments. “Apple says they don’t infringe. But Apple developers testified that they didn’t pay any attention to anyone’s patents when developing their system. ”

Google Defends Patent Fees in Microsoft, Apple Trials

Apple Inc. (AAPL)’s unwillingness to commit to a patent royalty set by a federal court prompted a judge yesterday to throw out its breach-of-contract claims against Google Inc. (GOOG)’s Motorola Mobility unit.

U.S. says Kim DotCom swore not to recreate MegaUpload

But with the launch of a service similar to MegaUpload, set for the first of the year, officials in the United States said that DotCom will have misled a New Zealand court and possibly violated the terms of his bail and opened himself up to new charges.

Publishers Ordered to Pay $3 Million in GSU Copyright Case

Not only did publishers not get the injunctive relief they sought in a closely watched case over e-reserves, last week they paid the tab. In a final order in the Georgia State E-reserves case, Cambridge University Press vs. Patton, Judge Orinda Evans directed the publisher plaintiffs to pay the defendants nearly $3 million in legal fees and costs, including $2,861,348. 71 in attorneys’ fees and $85,746. 39 in other court costs.

Apple Sued Over “Eye Closeup” Photo Used To Promote Retina MacBook Pro

According to Liewald, Apple obtained the eye photograph from her agency, Factory Downtown, requesting a high-resolution version of the image for layout purposes only. Apple further emphasized to Factory Downtown that it had no intention of using the “Eye Closeup” photograph in the advertising campaign for the Retina MacBook Pro, then proceeded to do exactly that, featuring it prominently in the advertising campaign and keynote address.

***** Applications/Gadgets

Critically Acclaimed Game 'Receiver' Now Available for Linux

Receiver was created for the 7-day FPS challenge to explore gun handling mechanics, randomized levels, and unordered storytelling. Armed only with a Colt 1911 A1 and an audiocassette player, you must uncover the secrets of the Mindkill in a building complex infested with automated turrets and hovering shock drones.

An Unlikely Union: Microsoft SmartGlass for Android Review

Open Source Orion 1.0 Browser based Code Editor Goes Live

"Orion is a completely new open source tooling platform, which provides an open, extensible tooling platform and a set of re-usable components for building web tools which run in your browser," Milinkovich blogged.

World's smallest 4 megapixel USB3 vision camera and Tux, the Linux mascot

Well, it just so happens that the company is no stranger to Linux, because their CURRERA-R series of machine-vision, smart cameras (integrated with an Intel-based personal computer) has support for Linux.

Open Source Asterisk 11 Jump Starts Long Term Support

Google reveals new Nexus devices

Nexus 10 will be able to manage multiple profiles, meaning that the tablet can be shared between more than one person.

***** Reports

The Raspberry PI - The Sinclair Spectrum of the 21st Century

The thing is though the Spectrum wasn't just about playing games. The Sinclair Spectrum gave budding young programmers the ability to write their own games and applications.

Ubuntu 13.04 Will Run on the Google Nexus 7 Tablet

The Ubuntu Developer Summit for Ubuntu 13. 04 will start next Monday, on October 29th and the development team is preparing to give attendees a demonstration of Ubuntu OS on the Google Nexus 7 tablet.

The future of our open source world

Yet open source ideas have tremendous potential beyond software. All you need to create a successful open source community are participants who both contribute to, as well as benefit from, shared content. Such networks of transparency, collaboration, and trust can be tremendously beneficial in other industries as well, from pharmaceuticals to manufactured goods.

Big Data Right Now: Five Trendy Open Source Technologies

Let’s look at five new technologies that are shaking things up in Big Data. Here is the newest class of tools that you can’t afford to overlook, coming soon to an enterprise near you.

Android jobs rocket as iOS jobs stagnate

Using data from 230,614 positions posted in Q3, Freelancer. co. uk saw 16 percent growth in the number of Android jobs, at 4,795. Meanwhile, the number of iOS jobs rose a comparatively small eight percent to 5,509.

Linux Mint Makes Money with Minty Merchandise

The latest coup is a partnership with ThinkPenguin to sell computers with Linux Mint installed.

Ubuntu 14.04 Will Come to Phones, TVs and Tablets

Canonical will try to bring Ubuntu 14. 04 LTS to tablets, TVs and mobile phones.

Get your application in for the Steam for Linux beta

The long-awaited beta test for Steam for Linux has arrived. There are only 1,000 spots available for testers, and Valve is looking for experienced Linux users.

When and Why Do I Update Open Source Policy Rules?

For this discussion it is important to differentiate between the open source software (OSS) policy and the rules that flow from the policy.

What Does Disney Buying Star Wars Have To Do With Open Source?

Actually there is a potential open source angle that I will cover before I dive in to some of the other stuff. Over the past year or so Disney has shown a benevolent side towards open source, releasing some libraries and software from Disney Animation and Disney-owned Pixar to the open source community.

HP: Why an Open Cloud Matters

The importance of an open approach for the cloud is a key tenant of HP's cloud strategy overall. According to Singh, what customers are really looking for in the cloud is a single management backplane and an environment through which they can provision, secure and build services.

Linux-on-ARM project Linaro backed by Facebook, Red Hat and HP

In an announcement yesterday, the Linaro Enterprise Group said it will initially work on low-level Linux boot architecture and kernel software for use by system-on-chip vendors, commercial Linux providers and server manufacturers.

How a NASA Open Source Startup Could Change the IT Universe

"It was through working with Google that I came to realize how much of a force multiplier it was to give every one of your employees access to infinite compute and storage resources," Kemp said. "That's really what the people that work at Google feel that they've got. "

Brocade Acquires Linux Software Defined Networking Vendor Vyatta

Herrell added that Brocade is deeply knowledgeable about the business of IP networking and as such already understand the value of what Vyatta is all about.

Where are all the open-source mobile projects?

Oh, sure, Android appears to be on track to dominate tablets, just as it does the smartphone market. But Android is hardly a paragon of open-source virtue.

TLWIR 48: Revealing the Hidden Biases Against Free Software

In the old days, news used to be disseminated by journalists who were trained to at least look objective. Now, any skillful writer has the power to inform or misinform people.

Proprietary Browser vs. Open Source Browser [Market Share Analysis]

With time open source software have emerged as potential contenders to proprietary software. Unlike the traditional understanding, open source software have proven to be as capable (or even more capable) than counterpart proprietary software and have been successful in claiming substantial market share.

Survey: Open Standards and Open Source Are Welcome in the Cloud

Ninety-four percent of respondents (of which there were both Windows and Linux users) said collaboration and a vibrant open source ecosystem are important for cloud adoption.

Why do super computers use Linux?

He further says “the evolution of large Linux superclusters emerges from the proliferation of commodity components such as PCs, the development of high-speed COTS networks, such as Myrinet, and rapid expansion of the open software movement,”…. “Thus, true supercomputers can be created at an extremely reasonable cost in comparison to traditional supercomputers. ”

HP doubles down on Linux

At LinuxCon Europe in Barcelona, Spain, the Linux Foundation, the non-profit organization dedicated to accelerating Linux's growth, announced that HP "is making a strategic, long-term investment in Linux by upgrading to Platinum membership.

Firefox vs. the Web

"Over the next few years we are transitioning "Firefox" from meaning "desktop browser" into our brand umbrella for a range of consumer products: Marketplace, OS, browsers, and anything else we create for mass consumers in the future," Mozilla staff David Slater, wrote in a bugzilla entry.

The Irresistible Rise of Android

In the wake of the news that Android sales now represent around 75% of the global smartphone market during the most recent quarter, there's still some surprise that this has happened. After all, this was a sector that Apple absolutely dominated just a few years ago. Some find it hard to understand how Android has pulled this off in just five years.

Kickstarter and Game Development: Highlighting Games Coming to Linux Part 3

Continuing on with the series, today we talk with a game developer who has recently has had their game “Greenlit“. Simon Dean from Games Foundry chatted with me about Folk Tale, a self proclaimed “City Builder, God, RTS, Adventure Game. ”

ARM Server Tech Gets a LEG up on Linux

This past week, multiple vendors joined Linaro, including AMD, AppliedMicro, Calxeda, Canonical, Cavium, Facebook, HP, Marvell and Red Hat, to create a new working group called the Linaro Enterprise Group (LEG).

Apple Said to Be Exploring Switch From Intel for Mac

Apple Inc. (AAPL) is exploring ways to replace Intel Corp. (INTC) processors in its Mac personal computers with a version of the chip technology it uses in the iPhone and iPad, according to people familiar with the company’s research.

***** Snippets

Hadoop Creator Outlines the Future of Big Data Platform

Chromebooks one hack away from world Domination!

BackBox Linux 3 review

Linux 3.7 rc3

Mozilla Firefox 16.0.2 Locks Down on Location Security

Will XP Users Shun Windows 8 in Favor of Ubuntu?

Open source misconceptions fading

Linus: 2560x1600 should be the standard

It's Official: Ubuntu 13.04 Will Drop Alpha Releases

The best interface may be no interface at all - and that's good for Linux

Red Hat Linux Born on Halloween and Still Scaring the Pants off Proprietary Operating Systems

Pear Linux 6 review

LibreOffice Pushes Back, Releases 3.6.3

Twitter Bootstrap

Free download of CrossOver for Linux and Mac today

Sandy Prompts Early Launch of Google Emergency Alert Feature

Introducing Ubuntu Shopping Alternate Lens for Unity

Linux 3.7 rc4

Ubuntu Tweak 0.8.2 Brings Support for Ubuntu 12.10

Apple's poisonous Touch silently kills the GNOMEs of Linux Forest

Debian Wheezy Pre-Review

Day 1 of LinuxCon Europe 2012 in Pictures

KDE 4.9.3 Has Been Officially Released

Linux Foundation Sponsors Now Includes Microsoft?

Apple’s tablet dominance cut by rivals
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