A group of students at Swarthmore College have formed a "Coalition for the Digital Commons" to combat threats to open culture and information exchange.
This translates into resisting the efforts of the RIAA to sue those who share music files, opposing the DMCA and similar expansion of intellectual property law, spreading the use of Linux and other freeware programs and fighting the plan of Microsoft and the “Trusted Computing Platform Alliance” to put monitoring chips in personal computers.
Link (via pho, thanks, JP!)
Linux, a free alternative to the Microsoft Windows operating system, lies at the heart of SCDC’s philosophy. The group’s short-term goals include getting more students to switch to Linux and get some Linux-based computers in public areas, to “show everyone how functional Linux is — that it’s not some impractical pipedream,” Pavlovsky said. A major factor in SCDC’s championing of Linux is the advent of the Microsoft’s new “Trusted Computing” technology, also known as the Palladium chip. This technology, already present in some new IBM ThinkPads and set to be released in the upcoming version of Windows, would require Microsoft to verify if a user has permission to open a file on his or her computer.
David Robinson used the data from the 28,657 people who self-selected to take the Stack Overflow survey to investigate the relationship between programmer pay and the conventions of using either tabs or spaces to mark indents, and found a persistent, significant correlation between using spaces and bringing home higher pay.
It’s the end of an era, sort of: Fraunhofer IIS, the developers of the MP3 audio compression format, announced that they are ceasing their licensing program. In a blog post, spokesman Matthias Rose says that it’s had a good 20-year run and is obsolete. But it’s also true that the decoding patents expired last year, […]
Freddy deBoer writes that he’s been telling the same joke for years about Silicon Valley’s only product, which might be universalized as “At last, a way to verb with nouns on the internet!” But the social-media techopoly is stable, now, and so the venture capitalists have moved on to the three terrible trends that will […]
Although flagship smartphones are unlikely to adopt heavy-duty outer casing anytime soon, you can always prepare your device for the outdoors with a beefy case and and an external battery like this Nomad Tile Trackable PowerPack, available in the Boing Boing Store for $119.95.The Nomad Tile can fully recharge an iPhone 7 over three times […]
Even though credit cards now feature an EMV chip for securing transactions, they still have to include the magnetic strip for compatibility with older point of sale systems. Because of this, there’s no way for the chip’s new security capabilities to protect against card skimmers in the wild.How do you protect yourself from legacy-technology-induced fraud? […]
As the old saying goes, “You should sit in meditation for 30 minutes every day. Unless you are too busy, in which case you should meditate for an hour.” Since most of us have an endless list of things to do and people to see, carving out quiet time can feel impossible, especially when most […]