Quick News Links
- New music company, Fairtilizer
New company is about discovery, distribution services to musicians, not about buying, owning rights to their music. This seems to be the right model for the future as more artists see t is in their better interest to retain their rights. I can easily see a future where such companies compete on the services and pricing models they offer, regardless of what music they distribute.
- Google inadvertently blocks dynamic domain users
This highlights the danger of a single, central solution to blocking sites. Ideally one would use a number of such databases and weight accordingly.
- Postfix’s creator discusses security, spam
Lots of good information, background from someone with a strong track record. In particular the notion of human outsourcing for defense nicely mirrors the trend of attackers using it to bypass measures like captchas.
- Stanford teaching MBAs how to compete with open source
There are some things to like, such as the recommendation to compete on features, but a lot to hate such as endorsing embrace-and-extend. I think the argument is a no-starter anyway as so many formerly closed software shops are succeeding after embracing open source.
- Muxtape to re-launch in new form
Creator has walked away from attempt to try to license big label music. New version of the service will target indies who own their own rights and allow them to upload their music and embed a player, to serve their own jukebox functionality.
- Podcast that provides a guide to online privacy
Looks pretty technology specific. A lot of it is open source, though. Definitely worth a listen.
- New GNOME release adds messaging client, mobile support
Looks like GNOME is managing to stay competitive and relevant. Lots of good stuff here for developers of GTK+ apps though from remarks Ryan made on his Identi.ca account, the learning curve on Telepathy may be a bit steep.
- Gamers on DRM and games
Gamers seem to be getting more and more vocal about the issue of DRM. I am glad to see such a high profile site, Penny Arcade, (and one of my favorite web comics) tackling the issue with humor and good insights.
- New blog, Election Machinery
Looks like a good collections of news and topics that formerly had been scattered around other sources.
- Video explaining white space devices
This is understandably a very simple explanation, targeted at the average consumer. But the main points are valid, especially the comparison to innovation that happened previously in unregulated, unlicensed spectrum.
- NBC claims success against piracy
What NBC’s Cotton seems to be pointing to is essentially filtering done by service providers, like YouTube. I think the question of effectiveness is far some settled and he of course overlooks concerns about fair use and false positives. Discussion of alternatives, like Hulu, is slightly more clueful but really should be the higher priority as the direct competition with piracy.
- US ISPs won’t use DPI, tracking unless it is opt-in
The issue isn’t whether they will use tracking and deep packet inspection but how they will go about informing customers and acquiring consent. What is surprising is that while some of the high profile carriers are for opt-in, many other high profile tech companies are for opt-out, which would snare far more unwitting users.
- More on ISPs response to NebuAd
Some more details on how this came about. I won’t say “kicking and screaming” but it would have been better if this had been the stance of the ISPs to begin with, to assume a default of consumers not participating and giving them the initial choice. Of course, that would put a huge burden oh the ISPs to prove to customers that there is some value for them in doing so, so the initial reluctance says much.
- ISPs also trying to avoid privacy regulation
Om Malik characterizes the ISPs stance on opt-in as a form of self regulation. Essentially, if they give enough control to customers, there is no need for the government to step in on the consumers behalf. It begs some uncomfortable questions of what happens when public scrutiny lapses or fails.
- Business card web server
This looks like a fun, relatively simple project. If my free time continues, I might give one a go and then think about where such uber portable servers could be deployed to good effect.
- Britain to require RFID ID card for some foreign visitors
Cory’s personal tale here really captures the issues with this change in a nutshell. The comparison to the authoritarian regimes his family fled does not go amiss. Immigration is often a hot button issue but it is one with which developed nations must grapple and not in this way, as a passive back slide into totalitarian nonsense.
- Carriers, content players back new group against “net pollution”
This is ridiculous but consistent with past anti-piracy efforts. When will big content realize they cannot convince consumers that piracy hurts them directly in anyway. At least the motive here is laughably transparent seriously robbing it of any real chance of success.
- Free Culture flash game
This is addictive and seemingly never ending. You cannot hope to keep all people in the commons and I found there were some interesting spots where you could use the market siphoning ideas to aim them with less effort at people in the commons.
- Hole in Adobe’s Flash server is allowing users to copy Amazon videos
This actually seems to have been a result of compromising between features, here download speed, and security. Admittedly the security is against consumers as much as pirates. I’d argue that this accessibility may have some unexpected benefits.
- Google wants open wireless, reducing carriers to dumb pipes
This is hardly surprising and likely to be fought tooth and nail by the existing carriers. It does resonate with the call of others to delaminate the carriers, and wired operators as well, to just provide data without any additional services.
- CA Sec. of State wants open source e-voting systems
Bowen highlighted her state’s experiences to date at a gathering at MIT. There are some good suggestions here but I think the idea of a national ID card is dangerous to say the least given the US government’s track record with SSNs which were never intended for identification.
Quick Security Alerts
- Malware in disguise as fake Facebook message
- Critical security fix for Firefox 3
- Apple security fixes, too
- Database of open wifi access points
- Is Chrome a security risk?
- Yahoo mail client exposes auth data in the clear
Quick Follow Up Links
- Tech companies push back against ACTA
- More on Comcast’s throttling plan
- EU telecoms package receives critical amendments
- Anti-P2P amendments pass first reading in EU telecoms package
- Class action suit against EA seems to be on shaky ground
- Recap on engineering issues with white spaces
- Google claiming white space tests were rigged
- Judge Davis orders a new trial
- More on Thomas re-trial
- USTR responds to ACTA criticism, claims nothing to see
- Support a bill that may help save Pandora, others