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2002 Sep 19 16:26

2002.09.16 Meeting Notes


  • University of Sothern California bans file sharing.

  • Microsoft offered University of Waterloo (Canada) $561,000 if they made their "C#" (C Sharp) language a mandatory class for all CS majors, replacing C++. The deal was announced, but is being reconsidered. MS has given UW 1 year to comply.

  • Demo Linux client for the new first-person-shooter game "Unreal 2003" has been released!

  • Bioware announced the Linux client for the popular RPG game "NeverWinter Nights" is coming along well. New screenshots are at linuxgames.com

  • Forbes magazine reports that Bill Gates has lost $11 billion last year (for a net worth of $43b). He has now lost $20b since the tech 'meltdown' began in 2000, due largely to the drop in value of his Microsoft shares.

  • Privacy leak found in Mozilla-based browsers (including Netscape 6 and 7, Chimera and Galeon). A site can determine where you go next, regardless if you click a link on their page, select one of your own bookmarks, or simply type the URL manually. The bug can be disabled by editing a JavaScript preference.

  • A Linux worm is in the wild, and is reported to have infected 3,500 linux apache webservers. It makes use of a hole in the Linux Apache secure socket layer (SSL) module to make a copy of itself. The worm has been dubbed "Slapper" and its source code is currently being disected by researchers around the world. The SSL hole has already been plugged.

    Slapper creates a rogue PTP network which allows it to communicate with other clients and participate in a distributed DoS network attack. Symantic rates the severity of this worm as being 2 out 5, 5 being the most severe. Klez, for example, was 5. The worm is spreading very slowly, as far as worms go.

  • Microsoft Word has had a security flaw for years that allowed people to steal MS Office files from a remote system. The attacker sends the victim a bugged document, usually with a request that the document be revised and returned to the sender -- a common form of daily communication. When the document is changed and sent back, the file the attacker wants to steal is attached. MS says that they won't have a fix available for anyone except Word 2002 users!
  • Washington became the first state ever to successfully use its anti-spam laws in a court. WA successfully prosecuted Jason Heckel from Salem OR for breaking all 3 of it's spam laws:

    • no bogus return address
    • no deceptive subject lines
    • no 3rd party domain names without permission

    In fact, the court ruled that the state had already proved its case and no trial would be necessary; all that needs to be done is to determine the penalty. Heckel tried to take his case to the supreme court, but they refused to hear the case.

Project Reports

  • Demo - The last demo was this last Saturday. Quite a few Mac owners came by and asked about Linux. Bill Kendrick and Mike Simons staffed the event until 8pm while Mike got sound working on the demo box and they continued to answer people's questions.

  • Installfests - The last Installfest was this last Sunday. About 12 PCs showed up, and most installs were successful.

  • LERT - No activity.

  • Library - No activity.

Other Business

  • LUGODer of the Quarter - Rusty Minden, who has been running LUGOD's Installfests for many, many months, was recognized as this quarter's "LUGODer of the Quarter" and was awarded a $100 gift certificate to nerdbooks.com.

  • Financial Report - $43.70 in voluntary dues were collected. $15.00 were spent for the room at the library.


  • Bill Alexander discussed various music-related software for Linux. (For MIDI, chordsheets, lyrics sheets, sampling, conversion and more.)


  • Not taken - 45 to 55 people attended

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