Search

Rss Posts

Rss Comments

Login

 

Posts from March, 2009

Huge German Donation Marks Wikipedia’s Evolution

Mar 31

Raul654 writes “In December, we discussed the German Federal Archive’s agreement, at the urging of Wikimedia Deutschland, to donate 100,000 pictures to Wikipedia under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike license. At the time that was the largest picture donation ever to Wikipedia, and thought to be largest in the history of the free culture movement. Now Wikimedia Deutschland has reached a similar agreement with the Saxon State and University Library, which will donate 250,000 pictures to Wikipedia under CCA-ShareAlike. On a not-unrelated note: Microsoft has announced that it will discontinue its Encarta encyclopedia.”

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

View source

Locating the Real MySQL

Mar 31

An anonymous reader writes “In a blog post, Patrick Galbraith, an ex-core engineer on the MySQL Server team, raises the question: “What is the official branch of MySQL?” With Monty Widenius having left Sun and forked off MySQL for MariaDB, and Brian Aker running the Drizzle fork inside of Sun, where is the official MySQL tree? Sun may own the trademark, but it looks like there is doubt as to whether they are still the maintainers of the actual codebase after their $1B acquisition of the code a year ago. Smugmug’s Don MacAskhill, who is the keynote at the upcoming MySQL Conference, has commented that he is now using the Percona version of MySQL, and is no longer relying on Sun’s.”

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

View source

IBM Tries To Patent Offshoring

Mar 31

Ian Lamont writes “IBM has filed a patent application that covers offshoring employees. Application 20090083107, dated March 26, 2009, is a ‘method and system for strategic global resource sourcing.’ Figure 2 gives a pretty good idea of what’s involved — it shows boxes labelled ‘Engineer,’ ‘HR,’ and ‘Programmer’ with crossing arrows pointing to cylinders labelled ‘India,’ ‘China,’ and ‘Hungary.’ The article speculates that IBM may apply the methodology to its own staff — it reportedly plans to lay off thousands of employees and has even started a program to have IBM workers transfer to other countries at local wages.”

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

View source

Interview With Google’s V8 Author Lars Bak

Mar 31

Dr Pete writes “Financial Times has an interesting piece about Lars Bak and Kasper Lund the authors of the V8 virtual machine in Google’s Chrome browser. ‘Chrome attracted more than 10 million users in its first 100 days. Although that’s an impressive number, it still only translates into about 1 per cent of browser usage online. It will be a while before it can compete with Firefox, Internet Explorer and others. In December last year, Google announced that Chrome was now out of its development, or Beta, phase and is ready to be shipped as a pre-installed browser on some PCs. This could rapidly increase the number of users. Moreover, the European Commission’s antitrust battle with Microsoft over, among other things, how its own browser, Internet Explorer, is integrated into its Windows operating system may give competitors such as Google a chance to claim ground.'” Interestingly enough Google Chrome is currently fighting it out with Safari as the #3 web browser on Slashdot.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

View source

How Do I Make My Netbook More Manly?

Mar 31

basementman writes “I recently purchased a 10 inch white MSI wind. As you can see it’s a small computer and it’s good for what I use it for. I get a lot of comments from women saying it is ‘cute’ or ‘adorable.’ Not the good kind of cute that will get me the attention I want though, the kind of cute that says they think I have a different presence than I actually want to portray. So how can I make my netbook more manly, or at least have some witty line to respond to the their comments?” Hopefully basementman didn’t get a netbook with the hopes of it getting him some action, but what cool mods (or witty one-liners) have others used to salvage their dignity from hardware that is “a good size”?

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

View source

TomTom Settles With Microsoft

Mar 31

Surrounded writes “It appears TomTom bowed to the pressure and settled with Microsoft over the recent patent infringement claims from the Redmond software giant. In the agreement, TomTom will pay Microsoft for coverage under the eight car navigation and file management systems patents in the Microsoft case. Also as part of the agreement, Microsoft receives coverage under the four patents included in the TomTom counter-suit. TomTom also has to remove functionality related to two file management system patents (the ‘FAT LFN patents’).”

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

View source

The Copyrightability of Twitter Posts

Mar 31

TechDirt has an interesting look at some of the questions arising about the copyrightability of Twitter messages. I haven’t seen any actual copyright lawyers weigh in yet, but it certainly will be interesting to watch the feathers fly until someone nails down the answer. “[…] it seems like there would be two issues here. The first is whether or not the content is covered by copyright — and, for most messages the answer would probably be yes (there would need to be some sort of creative element to the messages to make that happen, so a simple ‘hi’ or ‘thanks’ or whatever might not cut it). But, the more important question then would be whether or not ESPN could quote the Twitter message. And, there, the answer is almost certainly, yes, they could, just as they could quote something you wrote in a blog post.”

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

View source

Investigative Journalism Being Reborn Through the Web?

Mar 31

Combating the stigma that investigative journalism is dead or dying, the Huffington Post has just launched a new venture to bankroll a group of investigative journalists to take a look into stories about the nation’s economy. “The popular Web site is collaborating with The Atlantic Philanthropies and other donors to launch the Huffington Post Investigative Fund with an initial budget of $1.75 million. That should be enough for 10 staff journalists who will primarily coordinate stories with freelancers, said Arianna Huffington, co-founder and editor-in-chief of The Huffington Post. Work that the journalists produce will be available for any publication or Web site to use at the same time it is posted on The Huffington Post, she said. The Huffington Post Web site is a collection of opinionated blog entries and breaking news. It has seven staff reporters. Huffington said she and the donors were concerned that layoffs at newspapers were hurting investigative journalism at a time the nation’s institutions need to be watched closely. She hopes to draw from the ranks of laid-off journalists for the venture.”

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

View source

Managing Humans

Mar 31

Kylar writes “For those of you who have already discovered Michael ‘Rands’ Lopp’s blog Rands In Repose, I congratulate you, as you are clearly an intelligent audience. For those of you who haven’t, or for the less discerning (or, perhaps less blog-oriented), this book provides an excellent entry into the writings of Rands. Containing edited selections from his blog as well as new material, Rands uses many anecdotes and stories to convey a startling amount of deep wisdom into the facets of the Silicon Valley programmer, and a bevy of tools that are helpful in attempting to herd, er, manage them.” Read below for Tom’s review.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

View source

Free Skype Client Lands On the iPhone

Mar 31

CNet is reporting that a free Skype client will finally be landing on the iPhone this week. Unfortunately some are saying that it seems many of the “critical” pieces of functionality are still missing. While the Skype engineers claim their native client will offer better audio quality (because there is no need to route through another server and transcode audio) they are still missing text messaging, file transfers, and integrated voice mail. Since the iPhone does not allow for multiple programs running concurrently, many are expecting existing multi-function apps like Fring and NimBuzz to continue their reign at the top.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

View source