Stories in the Pipe

These are stories waiting to be published to the main page. Remember, anyone can submit a new story!

How to Earn Money From Developing Mobile Apps
by jim09@pipedot.org on 2017-06-22 09:40
Australian Government Plans to Access Encrypted Messages
by Anonymous Coward on 2017-06-11 09:07
The Australian Government has a plan to access encrypted messages by changing laws to force telecommunications and technology firms to help authorities decrypt suspect messages. Instead of trying to decrypt messages in transit they plan on capturing message content at either end.
First World Encounter Teresian Mysticism and Interreligious Dialogue: Theravada Buddhism and Teresia
by Anonymous Coward on 2017-06-11 00:54
First World Encounter Teresian Mysticism and Interreligious Dialogue: Theravada Buddhism and Teresian Mysticism — Meditation and Contemplation, Pathways to Peace, Avila, Spain, 27-30 July 2017, co-organized by the International Centre of Teresian and Sanjuanist Studies (CITeS), and the Centre of Buddhist Studies (CBS) of the University of Hong Kong (HKU).
GRSecurity goes full commercial, no more free testing patches, threatens programmer trying to port.
by Anonymous Coward on 2017-06-09 19:17
1 comment
(*1) https://lwn.net/Articles/723169/
(*2) https://www.phoronix.com/forums/forum/software/general-linux-open-source/948623-grsecurity-kernel-patches-will-no-longer-be-free-to-the-public?page=1
(*3) https://www.embedded-linux.de/18-news/886-grsecurity-nicht-mehr-kostenlos-verfuegbar
(*4) https://www.theregister.co.uk/2017/04/26/grsecurity_linux_kernel_freeloaders/

GRSecurity removes public testing patch - goes full commercial.

(*5) http://www.openwall.com/lists/kernel-hardening/2017/06/04/24

>"Don't worry about it, there's nothing for a "grateful" user like yourself
>to download anymore. Boy, if I had more "grateful" users like yourself
>obsessed with harrassing us on Twitter, Reddit, and IRC so that they
>can go around and paint themselves as some kind of victim, I wouldn't
>know what to do with myself.

Brad Spengler prevents a private purchaser from redistributing the sourcecode via contract clauses between him and they: thus willfully frustrating the purpose of the license HE was granted by the linux kernel rightsholders. This is another reason a court may find him in violation of the license grant of the GPL. As we discussed previously. (See: ****)

Also Brad Spengler threatens others with lawsuit in a nearly transparent attempt to get them to stop porting over the work:

>" This stops *now* or I'm sending lawyers after you and

(*6) http://www.openwall.com/lists/kernel-hardening/2017/06/03/14

>Guys, this is your *last warning*. This stops *now* or I'm sending lawyers
>after you and the companies paying you to plagiarize our work and violate
>our *registered* copyright (which for the record entitles us to punitive
>damages which now are very easily provable). It's time to get serious
>about attribution -- what you are doing is completely unacceptable. I'm
>already in contact with lawyers to prepare for the next time this happens.
>If any of this plagiarized and misattributed code actually made it into
>the Linux kernel, you'd all be in a world of pain.

Here Brad Spengler threatens a copyright infringement lawsuit regarding his non-original wholly-derivative work.
(An original work stands alone). This while he threatens those paying customers who might redistribute the work (see: **** below).

Note: Copyright licenses (like any license to use the property of another (copyright is freely alienable in the same way real property is)) are freely revocable unless barred by estoppel. The GPL v2 lacks a no-revocation clause thus estoppel would be more difficult to argue (additonally none of the "agreeing parties" have ever met each other).

Note2: GrSecurity is a derivative work of the linux kernel, it is non-seperable: it wholly relies on the linux kernel source code to work.
Courts in both the US and Germany have reaffirmed that if a work based on another work cannot stand alone it is clearly a derivative work.
(See the Anime Subtitles case from a few years ago) (See page 6 of the phoronix discussion at *2 for a review)

Note3:The linux kernel is not under joint copyright, it is simply a collection of derivative work upon derivative work.

A simple solution is for one or many of the rightsholders to the code GRSecurity is derived from/ modifies to rescind Brad Spengler's license to use or modify their code.

Additionally copyright violation claims can be filed as Brad Spengler has reportedly attempted to frustrate the purpose of the agreement that allows him to modify the linux kernel in the first place; placing additional restrictions to prevent redistribution of the sourcecode (a court would not be fooled by such a scheme).

(Addionally there were third parties who contributed to the GRSecurity code base when it was publically distributed.)

Other snippets from (*5) include Mr Spengler's unhappiness with the publication of his scheme and RMS's opinion of it:
>... It has been nearly 4 months now and despite repeated follow-ups, I still
>haven't received anything back more than an automated reply. Likewise
>regarding some supposed claims by RMS which were published last year by
>internet troll mikeeusa -- I have been trying since June 3rd of last
>year to get any response from him, but have been unable to. So when you ...

RMS' opinion can be seen here:
(*7) https://lists.debian.org/debian-user/2016/06/msg00020.html

>Re: GRsecurity is preventing others from employing their rights under version 2 the GPL to redistribute source code
>Richard Stallman (May 31 2016 10:27 PM)
>[[[ To any NSA and FBI agents reading my email: please consider ]]]
>[[[ whether defending the US Constitution against all enemies, ]]]
>[[[ foreign or domestic, requires you to follow Snowden's example. ]]]
>If I understand right, this is a matter of GPL 2 on the Linux patches.
>Is that right? If so, I think GRsecurity is violating the GPL on
>Dr Richard Stallman
>President, Free Software Foundation (gnu.org, fsf.org)
>Internet Hall-of-Famer (internethalloffame.org)
>Skype: No way! See stallman.org/skype.html.

GRsecurity is preventing others from employing their rights under version 2 the GPL to redistribute
(by threatening them with a non-renewal of a contract to recive this patch to the linux kernel.)
(GRsecurity is a derivative work of the linux kernel (it is a patch))

People who have dealt with them have attested to this fact:
"You will also lose the access to the patches in the form of grsec not renewing the contract.
Also they've asked us (a Russian hosting company) for $17000+ a year for access their stable
patches. $17k is quite a lot for us. A question about negotiating a lower price was completely
ignored. Twice." -- fbt2lurker

And it is suggested to be the case here aswell:
"Do you work for some company that pays for Grsecurity? If so then would you kindly excersise the
rights given to you by GPL and send me a tarball of all the latest patches and releases?" --
"sadly (for this case) no, i work in a human rights organization where we get the patches by a
friendly and richer 3rd party of the same field. we made the compromise to that 3rd party to not
distribute the patches outside and as we deal with some critical situations i cannot afford to
compromise that even for the sake of gpl :/
the "dumber" version for unstable patches will make a big problem for several projects, i would
keep an eye on them. this situation cannot be hold for a long time" -- disturbio
A Gas Station in Space Could Allow Us to Reach Other Worlds
by pranjal@pipedot.org on 2017-05-22 08:02
Five students at Caltech Space Challenge present their idea on the benefits of such a station. They proposed their designs what a lunar launch and supply station for deep space missions.
Read full: Gas Station in Space
Now, Google AI Can Beat Human Engineers
by pranjal@pipedot.org on 2017-05-22 07:59
1 comment
Google has developed an artificial neural network to mimic the way the brain learns. The system is called as AutoML, that can develop networks that are more powerful, efficient, and easy to use.
Read full story here: Google AI
Theresa May to create a halal internet for UK
by Anonymous Coward on 2017-05-21 06:09
The UK is taking a step down the slippery slope with the announcement of the intention to lock down access to the internet in the UK which will result in a controlled, filtered, monitored and punitive style of internet access of restricted use similar to that of Iran's "Halal Internet". From the documents available, Theresa May promises to impose another era of Victorian morality on England based on the values her party deems to be ideal. Whether or not this will be extended outside of the internet, which would force brothels, sex toy shops, adult book shops, and massage parlours to close and may cancel Christmas, is unknown. May's party has not disclosed how far they intend to apply their moral code on UK society.
Where to see what's next on netflix in the Netherlands
by fransve@pipedot.org on 2017-05-17 16:19
1 comment
I wonder if anyone could help me with this. I really enjoy netflix series however i only know http://www.netflix-aanbod.nl and not so many other website to see what's new on netflix. Anyone ??
Keylogger found in HP audio driver, no one surprised
by Anonymous Coward on 2017-05-14 14:34
Is 2017 going to be remembered as "Year of the Security Breach"? Security researchers have discovered a keylogger in a HP audio driver. The keylogger has probably been active since 2015. 28 models of HP laptops are affected. Given that HP has 20% of the PC market millions of people could be affected.
While Australia rolls out fiber iinet offers VDSL with comparative speeds
by Anonymous Coward on 2017-05-09 13:02
The creation of a new fiber based broadband network in Australia has received a lot of bashing recently with the government switching from the original plan of fiber to the premises to fiber to the node to fiber to the curb and "multi technology mix using existing and new copper cabling. NBN Co. has been repeatedly criticized for going over budget and over time while costing the taxpayers money for damage to existing facilities and unnecessary work. The NBN is supposed to deliver a fiber network with next generation speeds to boost Australia's position in the internet fueled global economy. In the midst of this national embarrassment local ISP iinet is now offering a VDSL2 service with comparable speeds to the NBN. This is a bloody nose for the beleaguered NBN Co. who are years behind their schedule and may not even finish the proposed fiber network. With up to 80Mbps on an unlimited data plan, can the NBN compete?
Aussies say no to paying using their mobile
by Anonymous Coward on 2017-05-06 11:52
1 comment
When mobile payment systems were first introduced in Australia there was a huge kerfuffle about Apple entering the market with Apple having to fight to play in the Aussie mobile banking space. With the players now in the market the overall picture of how Australians are adapting to paying by phone is clear: not at all. Due to the existing range of options and mistrust of mobile phone security Australians are largely avoiding smartphone payment systems. This may more to do with the entrenched easy to use tap and pay system already in place than other factors. While cash withdrawals in general are declining most Australians look to be set to continue using cash and tap and pay for the foreseeable future.
When a government breaks copyright everything is okay
by Anonymous Coward on 2017-05-02 10:45
General agreement is that copyright law has far exceeded its original intent and that it needs to be scaled back. Pundits wonder why the government fails to do so, instead passing laws that extend copyright. Perhaps it is because it does not affect them. They just don't care. The government of a country is untouchable. An example of this is being played out in New Zealand where Eninem is suing the NZ government for using his song without permission. Who watches the watchers? Who holds a government to account? Why should they even care what this singer does? After all, they pass these laws for people to be held accountable, not politicians.
Samsung forces Bixby on users in Galaxy 8
by Anonymous Coward on 2017-04-25 05:41
Have you ever wanted something looking over your shoulder watching everything you do that you can't get rid of? Samsung thinks you do. The latest flagship product from Samsung has an assistant program baked into the operating system for which cannot be disabled by the owner of the device. This is a receipe for privacy violations and data leakage. In comparison, most other programs including Google Services can be disabled. Is it time to pass a law requiring companies to hand over root access for devices to consumers?
eBay may block Australian buyers over GST collection
by Anonymous Coward on 2017-04-18 13:08
1 comment
eBay has responded to the Australian Government initiative to collect GST for all internet purchases by proposing to block Australians from using eBay on the grounds that the changes demanded by the ATO are unworkable. While the Australian Treasurer has stated that this measure is to ensure local Australian businesses are not disadvantaged by the availability of overseas goods, the bill does not address that goods not available in Australia will also be taxed. The cost to businesses around the world to collection and be audited for GST may be excessive enough for many businesses to simply block Australians from purchasing. Local stores including Harvey Norman and Premier Investments are being blamed for supporting this change providing the government a platform to reap more taxes. Should this occur, and eBay does block Australian buyers, then the Australian government may find itself facing a backlash from millions of voters that it is not in the position to manage.
Google invents a whole new way to creep us out
by Anonymous Coward on 2017-04-16 13:26
1 comment
Don't be evil. A motto to live by. A goal to achieve. A vision. A stupid utterance made by an exec before Google dominated the internet. Google has announced a new product named Google Hire which will allow a potential employee to see your internet search history. Privacy advocates are warning that now is a good time to clear your Google search history and take preventative measures. Google Hire will links events from your Google account, Youtube history, and other sources to give employers a deeper understanding of applicants. Google Hire will allow employers to employers to post job listings, and accept and manage applications similar to StackExchange and other sites.
Another group of thieves has their selfies uploaded to iCloud
by Anonymous Coward on 2017-04-09 13:27
Proving once again that criminals are just stupid a group of thieves has stolen an iPhone then taken selfies which automatically uploaded to the cloud. The phone's owner posted the pictures on Facebook and handed them to the police in the hope of catching the criminals. Years after the first news story where an idiot used a stolen phone not realizing that the pics were being uploaded it appears that thieves are still targeting these valuable devices. When will a universal kill switch be implemented to make this type of crime not worthwhile?
Microsoft admits how much data Windows 10 sends
by Anonymous Coward on 2017-04-08 09:16
Microsoft is in damage control after admitting how much data Windows 10 actually takes. The admission has sickened privacy groups fears and confirmed the rumours of how bad Windows 10 actually is. Microsoft intend to make the situation worse in the soon to be released, the Creators Update, will report all details of a windows machine to Microsoft down to the hardware serial numbers and colour of the machine. This is the type of information advertisers have been clawing to get for years. No word at time this on how much Microsoft would sell this data for.
ACCC to investigate how fast the NBN actually isn't
by Anonymous Coward on 2017-04-07 05:27
In a shock move, the Australian Customer Care and Cardiology department of the Australian Department is going to respond to repeated calls for the still-being-built National Broadband Network to be re-done due to complains of inconsistent speed and bad dropouts in the new fiber network. This will involve NBN victims^WCUSTOMERS putting a hardware device on their NBN line to report statistics in real time. around 4000 households will be tested to see exactly how bad the NBN is. Since its inception the NBN has been lambasted for its approach and implementation to build what is meant to be the fastest public infrastructure for the future ever seen in Australia for which is meant to last generations. In related news, a recent poll showed that less than half the country wants the NBN, and one third of the people polled think that they can just refuse the NBN when it is connected and keep using their existing copper line.
Galaxy 8 to have face recognition for payments
by Anonymous Coward on 2017-03-19 08:04
The latest Samsung Galaxy 8 will have facial recognition for payments, a 3.5mm audio jack and no home button. Samsung needs the Galaxy 8 to be a success after the shocking problems with the Note 7. With cheaper smartphones entering the mobile arena Samsung needs to capitalize on its market dominance to stay ahead.
iPhone Explodes in Customer's Hand at Repair Shop
by Anonymous Coward on 2017-03-18 04:45
A customer took their iPhone in to be repaired only to have the iPhone 6 explode in their hand as they pressed the screen. The screen blew right off. The shop had to be shut for the day due to the fumes created by the burning device. Beware of lithium-ion batteries in phones.
Dominos may win GPS Pizza Tracking suit by default
by Anonymous Coward on 2017-03-15 12:37
The Australian arm of Dominos is battling a lawsuit over its use of GPS technology to track pizza deliveries with Precision Tracking who claim that Dominos reversed their technology after initial talks fell through. Dominos claims to have gone with a superior GPS technology solution provider, Navman Wireless, who they are now suing, for which themselves have lodged a counterclaim against Precision Tracking making this a three way lawsuit. If Precision Tracking does not put up AU$200,000 as security then its case against Dominos will be halted. This three way stoush over the implementation method of using GPS to track pizza delivery shows how close Australia has become to following in America's footsteps in having legal battles over software patents for obvious inventions, tie up courts and harm innovation.
Vibrator maker pays out after admiting to tracking users with online app
by Anonymous Coward on 2017-03-15 12:07
A class action lawsuit has resulted in a leading vibrator manufacturer paying out up to $10,000 for any person who used their We-Vibe app after hackers discovered that personal data was being recorded by the company. While the company has claimed that it has done nothing wrong, anyone who owns a We-Vibe is entitled to part of the settlement based on that dates and times of use as well as vibration mode and pattern was being sent to servers owned by Innovation Standards using personally-identifiable email addresses as keys. As the data collected was deemed to be 'highly sensitive' the company will destroy all data collected.
Nokia brings back the 3310 but not for Aussies
by Anonymous Coward on 2017-02-27 02:20
With the recent rash of popularity of old style phones Nokia has licenced the old style 3310 candybar style phone to be ressurected. Sadly this phone is not useful in some countries like Australia where the 2G networks are being dismantled. If this retro phone does take off there is hope of a 3G or 4G version for diehard enthusiasts and people who appreciate a phone with 22 hours of talk time and one month standby.
Australia to introduce face recognition to speed up airport processing
by Anonymous Coward on 2017-01-22 07:36
1 comment
Australian introduced SmartGates a decade ago to scan passports automatically reducing the time required to process passengers through international airport security. Now the Australian Government is planning to spend 94M for a five year project to process 90% of travellers processed automatically. Passengers would not need to show their passports, instead being processed by biometric recognition of their faces, irises and/or fingerprints.
Fun with candy and hot water
by Anonymous Coward on 2016-12-23 07:32
Recent experiments have demonstrated the lovely patterns that can be formed from skittles and hot water. Now, the BOS shows how to mix hot water and m&m candy to create colorful patterns. Next up: hot water and jelly beans.
Australian Welfare Debt Automation Cockup So Bad Centrelink Boss Gives Out Personal Email Address
by Anonymous Coward on 2016-12-20 13:42
As of six months ago the Department of Human Services started spewing out 20,000 letters per week to people claiming that they owe Centrelink a debt. This is the same number of letters Centrelink, a part of DHS, used to send out per year. This is due to a new system implemented by the DHS for which pulls back five years of data from the Australian Tax Office then compares the amount of benefits paid to each person resulting in a calculation for if the person was potentially overpaid welfare. Due to the period of time many people have moved on and were not contactable by the DHS, so Centrelink sent the letters of demand to debt collectors when people could not be contacted to resolve the question of whether a debt was owed. Now, with Christmas approaching, thousands of people are being hunted down by debt collectors for debts they know nothing about and for in several cases debts that are not real. Understandably, many people are not happy about this. In response to the overwhelming negative response by the public to this situation Centrelink boss Hank Jongen has asked people to email him directly to discuss their issues. This is just the latest in a series of publicly humiliating incidents the DHS has faced in 2016 with special focus on its baneful MyGov and My Health Record systems and the outsourcing of the Bowel Cancer Screening Register. On the bright side, there are only 10 days left in 2016. What else can possibly go wrong this year.
Australia considers US style copyright reform
by Anonymous Coward on 2016-12-20 02:28
1 comment
In a move widely regarded as being a step in the right direction, Australia is considering adopting fair use provisions in cooyright law. However, restrictive Free Trade agreements prevent decreasing the length of copyright terms. This will bring Australian in line with America for fair use of copyrighted content, reduce the cost of dealing with infringements and may address other costly issues currently caused by existing laws.
Groupon Moves Operations to Ireland for Tax Breaks
by Anonymous Coward on 2016-12-19 22:55
Yet another company has followed in the footsteps of internet giants which currently claim to operate out of Ireland for tax purposes. From January 2017 online voucher powerhouse Groupon Australia will move its data and possibly some staff to Lower Ground Floor‚ Connaught House‚ 1 Burlington Road‚ Dublin 4‚ 216410 Ireland. Whether or not this will trigger recent ATO tax haven measures or result in a Australian Privacy Principle violation is yet to be determined.
Indian outsourcing fail as ATO brought to its knees
by Anonymous Coward on 2016-12-13 07:58
The outsourcing of Australian IT jobs to indian nationals failed badly today with key systems offline directly attributed to ATO's failed agile implementation and the outsourcing of many positions to Indian nationals. While ATO management have attempted to shift blame to "those who did not get onboard" the evidence of this failure is clear: outsourcing key functionality of the ATO is a failure. The attempted shift to agile is partly to blame with the implementation of agile using the SAFe methodology being proven to be an abject faikule. Most of the problems are centered with the employees sourced from India hired into key positions.
Libre-VideoGame Chaos-Esque Anthology reaches release 100.
by Anonymous Coward on 2016-12-11 12:34
1 comment
After years of constant, grinding, development the libre-videogame and fork of Xonotic known as Chaos-Esque Anthology has reached version 100.

The project has expanded Xonotic's original cast of 18 weapons to over 130 weapons, has added new textures, and maps, aswell as a list of other features including: city generation subsystem (with interiors), building subsystem (build buildings, furnishings, doors, blocks, the buildings have interiors and function similar to RTS buildables), marshaling subsytem, foliage subsystem, aswell as mounted weapons and more vehicles. Additionally hand-to-hand fighting was added for those wishing for a Mortal-Kombat feel in a libre 3d video-game.

More information can be found on the project's Linux Game Database page including changelog and download link of the ISO: https://lgdb.org/game/chaosesque-anthology

(Note: Chaos-Esque Anthology name was decided upon after input from the lead developer of Xonotic, many moons ago)
Australian NBN company runs out of money requiring a AUD20bn from Government to complete mixed techn
by Anonymous Coward on 2016-11-20 03:53
After downgrading the promised Australian fiber network to a 'mixed technology' which was promised to be delivered faster and cheaper the NBN Co. has run out of money. NBN Co. had loaned 20bn from the Australian Government to complete the NBN rollout. Even with this cash injection NBN Co. will still be unable to deliver the fiber network promised to the Australian people when the project first began.
ACT elections results website mirrors ABS PR incident
by Anonymous Coward on 2016-10-15 12:53
Following on from the terrible ABS performance during the Australian 2016 Census the ACT Elections Result page consistently threw a HTTP Error 404. The requested resource is not found. message. Given the current negative feedback of online government services with a range of failures from MyGOV through to the 2016 Census it is clear that Australian government departments need to up their game.
Australian Health Dept Releases Confidential Medicare Data
by Anonymous Coward on 2016-09-29 04:18
1 comment
The Australian privacy watchdog has been called on to investigate a breach of Australian Medicare data. This breach gives more weight to the privacy concerns surrounding the recent Australian 2016 census where the ABS has announced it will keep data permanently as a "linked key", store data for longer, and match data across government agencies. The Department of Health is the last in a list of Australian agencies to allow confidential data to be accessible.
How secure is your password
by Anonymous Coward on 2016-05-22 09:26
1 comment
With the recent theft of millions of users passwords and increased reliance on secondary authentication the need for educating users about insecure passwords has never been more important. With this in mind the people behind Dashlane Free Password Manager have released a web page that shows how long it takes to crack a password. The idea here is simple; users can see effective their password combination is and see in real time how long it would take today's computer systems to crack that password. What is being sought here is for users to choose longer passwords. This should be something which should be taught to kids in school.