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 #470 Period ending 31 October 2012

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

Happy Halloween. This week seems to be a week of leftovers from last week, with a couple more articles about the remote wiping of an Amazon customer device and on Open Stack. A large number of off topic articles this week as well, included because they had some interesting aspect.

*From my blog:

Verbatim distribution with attribution ok.

Other distribution - email me.



***** Off Topic

Antitrust: Commission sends Statement of Objections to Microsoft on non-compliance with browser

The European Commission has informed Microsoft of its preliminary view that Microsoft has failed to comply with its commitments to offer users a choice screen enabling them to easily choose their preferred web browser.

Seismologists Convicted of Not Predicting Earthquake

Well, I was just wondering the other day what if anything had ever happened with that ridiculous case in Italy where seismologists were charged with manslaughter—manslaughter!— for telling people not to worry too much about an earthquake (which then happened).

Attorney seeks to stop online photos of suspects

The pictures are being picked up by a website called mugshots. com and posting them on their own site. The site then charges people up to $399 to remove a photo, even if charges were dropped, scrubbed from someone’s record or the person was found not guilty, attorney Seth Rose said.

Penn State Climate Scientist Sues National Review for Libel

Scientist Michael Mann, whose work on climate change led to contentious litigation over access to his emails, filed a libel lawsuit yesterday against National Review, accusing the conservative publication of defaming him by accusing him of academic fraud.

Microsoft’s Pivot — A Plan to Dominate “Devices and Services”

A-la Apple, consumers will have no choice but to use Microsoft own services when using a Microsoft mobile device and compe- tition authorities will be powerless to prevent it.

***** Government/Policy

Amazon’s Remote Wipe of Customer’s Kindle Highlights Perils of DRM

And here’s the thing: What you don’t own, you don’t control. And anything protected by DRM is fundamentally not yours. This is an old argument, one that has been around so long it is almost quaint. But it is as true as ever.

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

Apple seeks patent for Lightning connector authentication system

The patent, titled "Cross-transport authentication," requires authentication controllers to be located at either the ports on a portable device and attached accessory, or the transport connector which can be a wire or cable.

Samsung loses another big patent case to Apple, this time at ITC

An ITC judge ruled [PDF] four Samsung phones infringed four Apple patents. If the ruling holds up, it means a variety of Samsung products are likely to be banned from the US market.

BuzzFeed lawsuit over celeb snaps raises copyright questions

BuzzFeed published nine photographs and now an image owner wants $1. 3 million. Is this a fair or practical way to use copyright law in an age where images are everywhere?

Siri Allegedly Infringes on Patent from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Professors

Is this case initiated by Dynamic Advances LLC just another greedy Patent troll grab-for-cash, or is it about Dynamic Advances being an IP Defender for the two professors?

M·CAM's 2011 Contrarian Call on Apple's '381 Patent Validated By USPTO

This report called into question the enforceablilty of Apple's '381 patent and identified M·CAM's lead challenge, U. S. Patent No. 7,786,975, among others, as potentially uncited prior art.

Dutch court says Samsung does not infringe Apple patent

A Dutch court has ruled Samsung Electronics does not infringe an Apple Inc patent by using certain multi-touch techniques on some of the Samsung Galaxy smartphones and tablet computers.

Apple Wins New iPhone 3D Modeling App, Apple TV, iChat, iPhone 5 LTE Patents & Much More

The US Patent and Trademark Office officially published an incredible series of 34 granted patents for Apple Inc. today. Today's report mainly focuses on three Apple patents.

Dotcom raid officer headed bike gang probe

Detective Inspector Grant Wormald was in charge of Operation Explorer to infiltrate the Red Devil motorcycle gang. But a judge is now deciding whether to throw out the case, or if evidence gathered after the staged prosecution is admissible in court.

Statement of the Librarian of Congress Relating to Section 1201 Rulemaking

Today I have designated six classes of works. Persons who circumvent access controls in order to engage in noninfringing uses of works in these six classes will not be subject to the statutory prohibition against circumvention.

Should software patents be abolished?

As Boldrin and Levine explain, patents are not really property rights, but rather monopoly rights. The grantees of a government monopoly have strong incentives to seek additional rents to expand their monopoly.

How a Supreme Court ruling may stop you from reselling just about anything$63_billion_copyright_question/

On Monday, the US Supreme Court will hear arguments in a case that pits a major textbook publisher against Supap Kirtsaeng, a student-entrepreneur who built a small business importing and selling textbooks.

US: Slow legal proceedings are Megaupload's fault, don't unfreeze assets

Megaupload says that by freezing its cash, servers, and other assets, the government is subjecting it to "ongoing, irreparable harm indistinguishable from the sort that would attend ultimate criminal conviction following full criminal process. " Given that the company hasn't been convicted of anything, Megaupload argues that this de facto punishment violates the company's right to due process of law.

What Apple Gets Wrong In Its Samsung Apology

Apple has posted up on its UK home page the court ordered apology to Samsung. Clarifying that the UK courts have ruled that Samsung did not in fact copy the look and feel, breach the design patent on the iPad. Much of it reads pretty much as we would expect.

***** Applications/Gadgets

Lightspeed on Your Desktop

Lightspeed is an OpenGL program that shows what an object would look like as it travels closer and closer to the speed of light. Lightspeed actually models four different effects that occur when you get close to the speed of light. The first effect is called Lorentz contraction. This effect causes objects to appear to shrink in the direction of travel.

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.

Google reveals new Nexus devices

Apple's iPad may have dominated tablet sales to this point, but it now faces cheaper competitors with their own media ecosystems and - in the case of Samsung's new Nexus 10 - a higher-resolution screen.

***** Reports

Is OpenStack Truly the Linux of Cloud? Yes and No

Founded by Rackspace and NASA, OpenStack is now starting to reach a useful level of maturity, as the OpenStack community hammers out compute, network, and storage capabilities that any Cloud provider could implement.

Inside Cisco's Open Source OpenStack

The networking giant isn't just contributing financially but is also building its own OpenStack cloud platform edition as well as being actively involved in code development.

Linux for Scientific Research

Linux is by far the leading operating system in computers used in scientific research, sites demanding heavy mathematical calculation and complex computations.

I just bought more than 1 million …Facebook data entries. OMG!

Oh yes, the deal price was 5$ – five u. s dollars.

Dell Lends An ARM Server Concept To Open Source Community

The Dell donation, which includes hosting and technical support for the ASF community, consists of a hosted server running on Calxeda’s Server-on-Chip EnergyCore processors.

Quitting MacBook Pro For Chromebook

While it's not being talked about in this way, the Chromebook line is probably the most successful Linux desktop/laptop computer we've seen to date. Most of the software on the device is open source and it relies heavily on open standards. The options for updating it yourself are openly discussed, and enterprising hackers have even loaded full GNU/Linux distributions onto it.

DARPA Welcomes "Virtual Robots" to Robotics Challenge

DARPA has opened up the next phase of their robotics challenge to "anyone with the skills to develop the software needed to advance core robotic software capabilities" via an online registration system and robotics simulation software.

***** Snippets

Linux 3.7 rc2

Ubuntu 12.10 and AMD Catalyst problem (solved)

GNOME 3.6.1 Has Been Released

OpenOffice's time to shine

Open Source Cost - The Google Trend That Has Not Wavered

Goodmorning Gnome 3.8 with Gnome Shell 3.7.1 Release!

Teardown of 13" Retina MacBook Pro finds redesigned battery, Samsung flash, soldered RAM

Looking For The Next $1 Billion Open Source Company

Open source GitHub clone GitLab reaches version 3.0

The People Who Support Linux: A College Student By Day, Red Hat Developer By (Late) Night

ROSA Desktop 2012 Beta released

It's Official: Sprint's Galaxy S III Jelly Bean Upgrade Starts Rolling Out

How Linux makes the post-desktop world possible

Kickstarter and Game Development: Highlighting Games Coming to Linux Part 2

The Perfect Desktop - Xubuntu 12.10 (Quantal Quetzal)

Pluck Out a Novel with Plume

The future of our open source world

Does OpenOffice have a future?

Gnome state in Wayland
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