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Post "Good Google," Who Will Defend the Open Web?

psykocrime Re:Duh (133 comments)

Then it's very disingenuous of you to post the article as if you were a third party when you are not.

Disingenuous? I don't quite see that. At the end of the day, what I said stands or falls on its merits (or lack thereof)... who submitted it to /. is actually pretty irrelevant. Anyway, I'm not going to stop and take the time to create a whole new Slashdot account just to post something today, when I have one I've been using for years.

I suppose you could quibble that I could have used the word "we" in the article description, and that would be something of a fair point. But I just have a habit of writing in a detached, 3rd party voice like that. I don't remember where it came from, but it's the way I've tended to write when referring to organizations in general.

about 2 years ago

Post "Good Google," Who Will Defend the Open Web?

psykocrime Re:Huh (133 comments)

OP here...

Evidence for abandonment of the "open web" - cancelling Reader and the CalDAV API.

AND abandoning OpenSocial, not implementing any relevant open standards in G+, not developing Android in an open fashion, and probably a few dozen other examples that I can't remember offhand.

Evidence for support of the open web: Chrome, GWT, open sourced jscompiler, V8, tons of random libraries and developer tools, SPDY, extensions to SSL, HTML5 rich snippets in search, etc.

Yeah, nobody is saying that Google haven't done some amazing things in the past. Or even that they don't still do *some* good things. That's what makes this whole situation even more disturbing! When an organization that you have trusted and looked up to for a very long time begins displaying behavior which suggest that it can no longer be trusted, it is very troubling. And ever since the big re-org at the top and since the advent of G+, Google have definitely been displaying markedly different behavior.

In the end, this is less about Google per-se, than it is about being a warning and a "call to action". As many posters on this thread have said, and as I said in the blog post... at the end of the day, the ultimate defender of the Open Web is US. All of us. A motley collection of individuals, small companies, big companies, medium companies, standards bodies, non-profits, etc. But WE, as in grassroots activists, solo hackers, startup founders, etc., need to pull our heads out of our collective bums and start making a lot more noise and taking action, or we'll wind up with a Web which is good for nothing but shoveling ads and government propaganda down our throats and spying on us.

about 2 years ago

Post "Good Google," Who Will Defend the Open Web?

psykocrime Re:Duh (133 comments)

Because this is a complete troll piece to begin with, and adding Microsoft to the list just makes it blatant.
Then toss Microsoft into a list of "good guys".

MS aren't seriously listed as "good guys" they are only on the list because it was initially written in something of a "stream of consciousness" fashion, listing companies that jumped to mind, pro or con and then sometimes (as in the case of Microsoft and Facebook) immediately disqualifying them from the "good guys" list.

Nowhere is evidence given for Google "abdicating their position as such a champion," it's simply stated with the hope we accept it as a given.

Anybody who reads the news and is paying attention to what has been going on lately realizes that Google has changed. Are they completely "evil" now? No, but it's quite clear that openness is less important to them than in the past. They've all but declared war on RSS, they never implemented OpenSocial in Google+, G+ doesn't support any of a whole raft of standards that you'd use when building a social network if you cared about openness, Android has *never* really be developed in the open... it's "open source" but Google do everything and then throw code over the wall to the world. Now, don't look a gift horse in the mouth and all, and I'd rather have an Android code dump than no Android code at all. But the point is that there is a pattern present, where Google are showing less and less interest in Open Web principles.

Who owns Fogbeam Labs, anyway?

I do, along with my cofounders.

They claim to be "Open Source 2.0" (what does that even mean?)

We do? If so, that's a mistake, if you'll point out where you saw that, I'll fix it. You're right "Open Source 2.0" is a meaningless term. OTOH, we DO mention producing "Open Source Enterprise 2.0" products, where "Enterprise 2.0" is a widely used term (I happen to HATE it, but it's out there and we don't have much choice but to go with the flow on this one) that sort-of means something to people in the Enterprise space.

and very new.

Yes, we're a startup. Most companies were at one time. :-) I however, as an individual, have been doing this stuff a long time. Go through my /. comment history if you don't believe me.

about 2 years ago

After Recent US Storms, Why Are Millions Still Without Power?

psykocrime Re:Without power? (813 comments)

> Seriously, though, it seems to me that infrastructure spending is one of those no-brainer things that shouldn't even be a question.

Of course it's a question; why should it be any different just because it's "infrastructure?" If there is demand for it, let the free-market provide it... nothing dictates that "infrastructure" be provided by some entity that maintains a monopoly on the use of force. Note too that "free market" includes voluntarily assembled co-operatives and communes. Communal activity for common good is one thing... forced participation in some initiative, at the point of a gun barrel, is something quite different.

more than 2 years ago

Microsoft Buys Yammer For $1.2 Billion

psykocrime Re:The client (72 comments)

Nobody wants to use some proprietary shit anyway. F/OSS continues to displace Microsoft's shitty, inferior proprietary garbage with every passing day, and that's a trend they won't be stopping anytime soon.

more than 2 years ago

Ask Slashdot: Why Aren't You Running KDE?

psykocrime I am, now. (818 comments)

I just switched to KDE about 3 weeks ago. My old laptop had finally decayed to the point that I felt justified in buying a new one, and
so I bought a new Toshiba, and slapped Fedora 16 on it. After about 15 minutes of Gnome 3, I had had enough, and switched my default environment
to KDE. It took me less than a day to feel pretty comfortable with KDE, and I couldn't be happier with it as things stand.

Sadly, the only *real* reason I stuck with Gnome as long as I did, was because it had always been the default on RH based distros, and I was just too lazy
to invest the energy to switch and learn a different environment. Well, that and at one time there was sort of a perception that KDE was less "mainstream" somehow because their libraries were GPL licensed. But since KDE went LGPL and as the new versions have improved since the 4.0 release (as I understand it), I don't see any reason to favor Gnome any more.

Label me a convert. KDE all the way.

more than 2 years ago

Police Encrypt Radios To Tune Out Public

psykocrime Dear Government: You can't win. (242 comments)

Dear government:

Don't waste your time. We will crack your codes, root your servers, publish your secret documents, and ensure the transparency that is prerequisite to a free and open society.

No matter what steps you take to attempt to hide the corruption and cronyism that dominate this country, we will defeat you. We, the cyberpunks, cypherpunks, crypto-anarchists, techno-libertarians and hackers, will not only evade and defeat any technological measure that you attempt to use against us, but we will actively subvert any such mechanism and use it to further the cause of freedom and liberty.

If you listen to us, we will listen to you. if you track our whereabouts, we will track yours. If you attempt to destroy our systems, we will destroy yours. We will not allow you to control the free flow of information and use secrecy and fear as tools to oppress the people.

#cryptoanarchism #technolibertarian #cyberpunk #cypherpunk #fuckthepolice

more than 3 years ago

Stem Cell Tourist Dies From Treatment In Thailand

psykocrime Allowed??? (451 comments)

about whether patients should be allowed to take the risks that come with untested treatments

That begs of the question of whether or not somebody else has the authority to make that decision for the patient. I contend that the answer is no, and that the original question is moot. An individual can choose whatever treatment they want, and if they die, well... they die. As long as no force or coercion is involved, it's fine.

more than 4 years ago

Top 10 Things Hollywood Thinks Computers Can Do

psykocrime Wait... (874 comments)

> The only thing that leaving a computer on will do is get you a massive electricity bill.

So you're telling me that the sentient AI that I've been growing in my basement for the past 15 years.. isn't?

Well, f%!# me.... :-(

more than 4 years ago

Cox Discontinues Usenet, Starting In June

psykocrime Re:Who cares? (306 comments)

I am sure gopher and archie are still used somewhere too.


more than 4 years ago

If ET Calls, Who Speaks For Humanity?

psykocrime Anybody but the British! (371 comments)

Please hope the Brits don't make first contact with ET, their track record isn't so hot when it comes to handling these things...

more than 4 years ago

Google Unveils goo.gl URL Shortening Service

psykocrime Re:Why? (242 comments)

Why type a URL? We all have copy and paste. In all my years on the internet I've never used a URL shortening service or seen the need.


more than 5 years ago

New Evidence For Ancient Life On Mars

psykocrime Re:Panspermia (186 comments)

Hardly. It might raise some ethical conundrums, but it certainly won't make colonization any more difficult.

If we ever colonize mars, we're going to start by building habitats. We'll have hundreds of years to live on a planet which we haven't even begun to terraform.

Cool. Just don't drink the water.

more than 5 years ago

EC Formally Objects To Oracle's Purchase of Sun

psykocrime Re:Oracle's reasons *are* monopolistic! (334 comments)

> The only thing that would probably appease the EU is if a fork of MySQL was established that would allow an easy transition or as others have mentioned that MySQL is spun off.

Aren't there about a dozen forks of MySQL already?

more than 5 years ago

FBI Bringing Biometric Photo Scanning To North Carolina, Via DMV

psykocrime Re:What is the big deal? (221 comments)

> Do people not understand the concept of what identification is and why we need it?

I'm wondering if *you* understand the concept of identification and why we need it, to be frank. But more to the point...

> Your drivers licence has become so much more than just a "drivers licence."

Why should a government issued "drivers license" be the gold standard for identification, and why should anybody be bound to require the presence of such an ID for a private transaction (like opening a bank account, purchasing alcohol, buying a gun, boarding an airplane, etc.)? The government can't do anything else right, why would we trust them with our identities? And even more to the point still is this.. it's just not a proper role for government to mandate anything about how we identify ourselves. The only proper roles of government are to provide rule-of-law, protect private property rights, and - arguably - to enforce contracts.

Now if the government wants to say "fine, if you expect us to enforce your contract, then identify yourself to our standards" then ok... but they have no basis to tell another private person/entity that they must - in turn - require a government sanctioned ID in order to conduct business with me.

more than 5 years ago

FBI Bringing Biometric Photo Scanning To North Carolina, Via DMV

psykocrime Re:I wonder what would have happened (221 comments)

Unfortunately the NC state government are just lap dogs for the Feds. Our DMV has been one of the most aggressive about complying with RealID, and otherwise participating in the feds privacy violating schemes, for years now. Sad for a state with an unofficial state motto of "First In Freedom", huh?

more than 5 years ago

The Best Fictional Doomsday Devices

psykocrime Re:Skynet? (340 comments)

They had a universe-destroying threat at least once every season.

How about Logopolis? That was a great "universe destroying" concept... just plain old entropy. :-)

more than 6 years ago



Why The "Star Trek Computer" Will Be Open Source and Apache Licensed

psykocrime psykocrime writes  |  about 2 years ago

psykocrime (61037) writes "The crazy kids at Fogbeam Labs have a new blog post up, positing that there is a trend towards advanced projects in NLP, Information Retrieval, Big Data and the Semantic Web moving to the Apache Software Foundation. Considering that Apache UIMA is a key component of IBM Watson is it wrong to believe that the organization behind Hadoop, OpenNLP, Jena, Stanbol, Mahout and Lucene will ultimately be the home of a real "Star Trek Computer"?"

Post "Good Google", Who Will Defend The Open Web?

psykocrime psykocrime writes  |  about 2 years ago

psykocrime writes "The crazy kids at Fogbeam Labs have started a discussion about Google and their relationship with the Open Web, and questioning who will step up to defend these principles, even as Google seem to be abdicating their position as such a champion. Some candidates mentioned include Yahoo, IBM, Red Hat, Mozilla, Microsoft and The Wikimedia Foundation, among others. The question is, what organization(s) have BOTH the necessary clout and the required ethical principles, to truly champion the Open Web, in the face of commercial efforts which are clearly inimical to Open Source, Open Standards, Libre Culture and other elements of an Open Web?"

Is The Hacker Ethic Compatible With A For-Profit Company?

psykocrime psykocrime writes  |  about 2 years ago

psykocrime writes "Fogbeam Labs look at the relationship between the Hacker Ethic and for-profit companies, with a nod to Google's recent "War on RSS", as well as Cory Doctorow's "The Coming War On General Purposes computing". The Free Software Foundation, Red Hat, Mozilla and the Electronic Frontier Foundation are organizations who appear to be on the right side of the issues, but out of that group, only Red Hat is a for-profit company. Where are all the for-profit companies that are imbued with the Hacker Ethic?"
Link to Original Source

IBM withdraws outsourcing patent application

psykocrime psykocrime writes  |  more than 7 years ago

psykocrime writes "Regarding the recently discussed IBM application for a patent on off-shoring jobs; IBM have now dropped said patent claim and placed the "innovation" in the public domain.

IBM has put into the public domain and withdrawn its application for patent number US2007/0162321 — Outsourcing of Services. This patent application covers analyzing work flows, skills, economic costs, etc. Here's why we are withdrawing it — IBM adopted a new policy a year ago to sharply reduce business method patent filings and instead stress significant technical content in its patents. Even though the patent application in question was filed eight months before the policy took effect in September, 2006, had the policy been in place at the time, IBM would not have filed the application. We're glad the community pointed this application out so IBM could take swift action."

Link to Original Source

Consumer JRE: small, fast, easy to install Java

psykocrime psykocrime writes  |  more than 7 years ago

psykocrime writes "Sun Microsystems have released the "Consumer JRE" version of Java, now known as Java SE 6 Update N. This update features the "Kernel" installation which: "lets first time Java users run applets and Web Start applications without waiting for the whole JRE download." This release makes Java much stronger competitor to Flash and other RIA platforms. Additional new features include a Quick Starter, the new Nimbus cross-platform Look & Feel for Swing and a new JRE update mechanism, among others."
Link to Original Source



Best Presidential Candidates, Libertarians

psykocrime psykocrime writes  |  about 7 years ago

A few days ago we posted a story for you to discuss the best presidential candidates for Super Tuesday, where we forgot that there are more than two political parties in the United States who will be nominating candidates to stand for President. It would be an interesting idea to try that again, but acknowledge the other parties that will be competing. This is the Libertarian section - please only discuss the Libertarian candidates in this story.


Florida judge declines to ban 'Bully'

psykocrime psykocrime writes  |  more than 8 years ago According to this BetaNews.com story Judge Ronald Freeman of the Miami-Dade Circuit Court has declined to ban Rockstar Games 'Bully' title. Notorious anti-game industry attorney Jack Thompson had sought a ban of the game under the Florida "public nuisance" law. As previously discussed here at Slashdot Judge Freeman actually ordered Rockstar to deliver a copy of the game to the court for review. The Judge spent about two hours reviewing the game before rendering his decision.


New York Times interview with Linus Torvalds

psykocrime psykocrime writes  |  more than 11 years ago The New York Times is running this interview with Linux creator Linus Torvalds. In this interesting interview, Linus addresses everything from SCO, to the RIAA to Microsoft, to a law requiring geeks to have dates. Definitely worth a read.


IBM files new counter-claims against SCO in Linux case

psykocrime psykocrime writes  |  more than 11 years ago According to this story at Smart Money, IBM has filed new claims against SCO, alleging violation of the GPL.

Quote from the article: According to the memo, which was obtained by The Wall Street Journal, the new counterclaim charges that SCO infringed IBM's copyrights by distributing IBM's contributions to Linux after SCO had violated its Linux license by claiming a copyright on parts of Linux.

At the least, this seems to be an encouraging sign regarding the validity of the GPL. After all, IBM's lawyers wouldn't be basing claims on it, if they didn't think it had "teeth."


SGI creating monster 128 CPU Linux box

psykocrime psykocrime writes  |  more than 11 years ago

SGI have announced plans to roll out a massive 128 processor Linux system by Spring 2004.

According to the article, SGI are using a customized Linux for this system, but the are supposedly "trying to get their changes accepted by the mainstream Linux community.

But, wait... according to SCO, Linux can't use more than 4 processors, without their IP... will SCO be suing SGI next?


NASA says Space Shuttle could resume flights by March 2004

psykocrime psykocrime writes  |  more than 11 years ago

According to this CNN article, NASA is saying that the space shuttle could resume conducting missions as early as a March-April 2004 timeframe.

The next flight will apparently be conducted in broad daylight, with additional monitoring of the launch by cameras capable of detecting any debris / ice / foam which might break off and impact the shuttle.


SuSE backs RedHat on SCO case

psykocrime psykocrime writes  |  more than 11 years ago

According to this SuSE press release, SuSE has publically announced their support for RedHat's actions against SCO. Quoting from the press release: 'SCO has already been halted in Germany and we applaud Red Hat's actions to help end their activities in the US -- and beyond. We applaud their efforts to restrict the rhetoric of the SCO group -- and the FUD they are trying to instill -- and will determine quickly what actions SuSE can take to support Red Hat in their efforts.'"


Real to release open-source media player for Linux

psykocrime psykocrime writes  |  more than 11 years ago

According to this article at News.com, Real Networks will be releasing an open source version of their audio / video player for Linux.


UniLever commits to global migration from Unix to Linux

psykocrime psykocrime writes  |  more than 11 years ago

According to this article at news.com, UniLever has decided to replace all it's Unix servers, worldwide, with Linux servers, with a little help from HP.

According to Martin Armitage, the head of Unilever's global infrastructure organization, ". "By 2006 or 2007, we will cease buying any Unix systems at all, and all our focus will be in the Linux area."

Nice win for Linux, in the corporate world, especially in light of all the SCO FUD going around these days.


Sun joins OSDL, talks about open-sourcing Java

psykocrime psykocrime writes  |  more than 11 years ago

Sun is making a lot of noise in the open source world today. First, they have
joined OSDL, becoming the last of the four major server manufacturers to do so. Sun also seems to be giving real thought to the possiblities of open-sourcing Java. In this article, Jonathan Schwartz, Sun's executive vice president for software, had this to say:

"Sun Software Chief Technology Officer John Fowler has launched discussions of making Java an open-source project, a move Sun would make "to promote innovation and distribution," Schwartz said. "The main appeal open source has for the developer community is that folks love to noodle...What open source tends to do more than anything else is it tends to spark innovation."

The main hangup seems to be the fear of a certain company from Redmond. From the article:

it won't happen anytime soon, though, because of the risk that Microsoft would adopt the technology, then undermine it unchecked because of its immense distribution capability, he said. "When we out-ship Windows in desktop volume, we will look very seriously at open-sourcing Java on the desktop," he said.


Novell to nix NetWare, make major shift to Linux

psykocrime psykocrime writes  |  more than 11 years ago

According to this article at News.com, Novell is saying they will likely end NetWare development, and move to a strategy of purely providing services which run on top of Linux.

At the same time, Novell have announced that they will be porting their entire GroupWise suite of products to Linux.

This comes on the heels of Novell's acquistion of Ximian, which was recently covered on Slashdot, here, and here.


RedHat joins ObjectWeb, releases new Enterprise bundle

psykocrime psykocrime writes  |  more than 11 years ago According to this article at news.com, RedHat has announced that they will begin shipping a new RedHat Enterprise Linux bundle later this year, which will include Eclipse , a popular open-source IDE platform, and JONAS an open-source J2EE application server.

RedHat will also be joining the ObjectWeb consortium, and will participate in ObjectWeb sponsored open-source middleware projects.

Looks like another bold move by RedHat to push Linux into the enterprise space, as well as an example of the growing synergy between Java and Linux when it comes to competing with Microsoft.


First Journal Entry

psykocrime psykocrime writes  |  more than 11 years ago

Ok, so /. now has this neat Journal feature. I haven't used mine up until now, so here goes nothing....

Inspired by the Good Summer Read article, and needing some refresher material on basic math, before I take Calculus, I went down to Barnes and Noble tonight and snagged a nice haul of new books...

Here's what I got, in no particular order:

The Advent Of The Algorithm, by David Berlinski

I picked this up just because the title caught my eye, and I read the back cover description, and decided it might be fun to read. From the back cover: "In Advent of the Algorithm, David Berlinksi creatively combines history, science, and math to explain and explore the intriguing story of how the algorithm was finally discovered through a succession of brilliant mathematicians and logicians, and how their ideas paved the way for our digital age." Cool, huh?

Quick Arithmetic: A self-teaching guide, by Robert A Carman and Marilyn J. Carman

OK, laugh if you want. I'm about to return to school to finish my bachelors degree in computer science, and I'll need to take 3 semesters of Calculus to do so. Since the last math class I took was nearly 10 years ago, and math is definitely "use it or lose it" stuff, I decided to dig out my old pre-calc book the other day and start doing some review work. Much to my dismay, I found that I'd forgotten even more fundamental shit, hence this book.

Prisoner's Dilemma, by William Poundstone

From the San Francisco Chronicle review: "Both a fascinating biography of Von Neumann... and a brilliant social history of game theory and its role in the Cold War and nuclear arms race." This should be fun to read...

The Thirteen Books of the Elements, Euclid (translated with introduction and commentary by Sir Thomas L. Heath)

What can I say... I like math even if it's not something I'm naturally good at. Anybody who's really interested in math should have the Thirteen Books of the Elements on their shelf, and I'd put off buying this forever... tonight seemed like a good night to ahead and buy this classic set.

Trigonometric Delights, by Eli Maor

Just something else that caught my eye. Skimmed through it, and the back cover description was compelling enough to convince me to snag it. From the back cover: "Trigonometry has always been the black sheep of mathematics. It has a reputation as a dry and difficult subject, a glorified form of geometry complicated by tedious computation. In this book, Eli Maor draws on his remarkable talents as a guide to the world of numbers to dispel that view. Rejecting the usual arid descriptions of sine, cosine, and their trigonometric relatives, he brings the subjec to life in a compelling blend of history, biography and mathematics." 'nuff said.

Prime Obsession: Bernhard Riemann and the Greatest Unsolved Problem in Mathematics, by John Derbyshire

Again, quoting the back cover:

"The Riemann Hypothesis is one of the deepest of all unsolved problems in mathematics. Unfortunately, it is difficult to state exactly what the hypothesis iis. It is high time that someone would write a book explaining the hypothesis in ways understandable by ordinary mathematicians and even by laymen. Three cheers to Jon Derbyshire for having finally done it" - Martin Gardner

Hey, if Martin Gardner says it's good, I'll take his word for it.

Imaginary Numbers: An Anthology of Marvelous Mathematical Stories, Diversions, Poems, and Musings, edited by William Frucht

I think the title says it all, here.

Enders Game, by Orson Scott Card

Amazingly, while I've always considered myself a big fan of sci-fi (what self respecting geek doesn't, though?) I've never read Enders Game. Probably because my reading tends to go in cycles... I'll read nothing but sci-fi for a year (or more), all horror for a year or two, all mysteries for a year or two, etc.... and I've been largely away from Sci-Fi for, umm, well, a long-time. I'm feeling the urge to get more back into sci-fi now though, so I figured I might as well go ahead and read this classic.

Arithmetic and Algebra... Again, by Brita Immergut and Jean Burr Smith

See above, re: needing to brush up on basic math skills, in advance of taking Calculus (and beyond).

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