22 June, 2006

Firefox alt-left alt-right not working

Few days ago I noticed that my Firefox alt-left, alt-right keyboard shortcuts are not working anymore.. As I am using the keyboard extensively especially those 2 hotkeys and I was very annoyed by this problem. I was sure that this trouble was generated by one of my many extensions. Due to the large number of extensions installed disbaling them one by one was not a practical sollution. So I checked all with KeyConfig and found a bug in DuplicateTab extension. I like this extension because it can clone the browser history to the new tab along with the url so I checked the extesion and searched for an update but Firefox said one was not available.. I then went to extension's page and found out that there is an update indeed.. Installed it and everythings got back to normal.. Pretty weird that Firefox's extension manager didnt noticed me about the update.

03 June, 2006

iCall Free VOIP calls to US/Canada

This is for real. I just stumbled upon a site that offers free calls to US and Canada. They basically are based on advertising so you probably should call some numbers for their sponsor and also they sell some stuff online so if you need something then this is the place to buy (to promote this kind of business). They might knock-off skip if they receive enough advertise!

They offer calls world wide but just to North America they are free. The amazing thing is that they don't require you to enter your credit card details unless you are willing to make calls to other destinations than North America.

The software is a little buggy but can be used without any problems. You can also receive an inbound phone # for as low as $0.99. iCall is using SIP technology as far as I can tell but unfortunately they won't give out SIP details (at least not for the moment). I suspect they won't give out SIP details for free since they probably make money from the softphone (it has a link where you can call a sponsor). They could consider selling pre-configured hardware devices (adapters) so you will have the possibility to use a hardware phone with iCall.

Another shortcoming is the lack of low bandwidth codecs but this might be improved in the next releases of their softphone. Being at a start point iCall sounds very promising so I recommend you to give it a try: www.iCall.com.

NOTE: I tested their services calling a mobile in Canada and it's incredible: very good voice quality!

Guess who's back: The Pirate Bay

The Pirate Bay is back and kicking! As we got used with they're mockery they are rebranding the tracker to The Police Bay..
For the moment the site it's not back online, if you visit them now you can see they are working right now at the design. For a moment I got an image of the new logo and made a screen shot. The search function is still unavailable but they promise it will function later today. For the most curious there are available thru different torrents videos from the police raid.

I guess they moved to another hosting provider (LeaseWeb) since the IP changed from into They also updated some system internal.. Updated apache and also switched to php5. No update to the tracker software as far as I can see.. I think they restored an older backup to new servers. Also, worth reading this article about

From http://tpbeng.blogspot.com/:

Gottfrid Svartholm, one of the men behind Pirate Bay and owner of web host PRQ, was arrested shortly after 11.30 AM yesterday[May 31st]. "The police denied me a public defender, so I told them nothing at all", he says.
Why were you denied a public defender?
- According to the policemen, I'm not risking a prison sentence for the crime I'm a suspect of, and hence they don't have to give me a defender.

Today, after the police razzia, Gottfrid Svartholm is busy with helping all the customers of PRQ, who, despite having no connection to The Pirate Bay, have been affected because the police seized the servers their sites were on.

What happens to the Pirate Bay now, when will you reopen?
- I'm not really involved in that work, but it'll be soon, Gottfrid Svartholm says.

Here in Sweden, or abroad?
- Abroad.
Antohre recommended reading is the blog of Mikael Viborg.

Anyway, long live TPB!

01 June, 2006

ThePirateBay servers seized: seeders at risk?

I was amazed to access thepiratebay.org and see a notice that the site is down and under investigation. For those who don't know, Swedish law does not consider a breach of copyright law the act of linking to pirated material. That's what amazes me the most.

My personal theory is that is a late April's fool joke.. As I remember last year, May 31th something similar 'happened' but it was just a joke. I hope I am right. It's kind of hard to shut down thepiratebay because they (Swedish) even have a pro-piracy political party.

LATER EDIT: (6/1/2006) On thepiratebay.org the SITE DOWN notice change into:

So it turns out that I was right! Yeah, baby!

Quote from the thepiratebay.org:
In the morning of 2006-05-31 the Swedish National Criminal Police showed a search warrant to Rix|Port80 personnel. The warrant was valid for all datacenters of Rix|Port80 and was directed at The Pirate Bay. The allegation was breach of copy-right law, alternatively assisting breach of copy-right law.
The servers are known not to keep logs of the clients using it but the .torrent files will unveil the IPs of the seeders. Seeders are the people sharing the actual files. Wouldn't be illegal for the authorities to use the info stored in the torrents files?

For a little background about ThePirateBay I will quote some interesting wikipedia content below:
At approximately 11am [1] of May 31, 2006, some 50 officers of the Swedish National Criminal Police raided a Rix|Port80 datacenter, as well as other sites, hosting The Pirate Bay's server farm, confiscating all its servers in an investigation surrounding allegations of storage of illegal content.[2] The three people arrested in the raid are aged 22, 24 and 28. According to sources in the IRC community of The Pirate Bay the three admins were released from police custody in the evening of the same day.

Several servers unrelated to The Pirate Bay (notably those belonging to the lobbying organization Piratbyrån and fellow file sharing site Swebits) were also confiscated by the police. There have been claims that servers of other customers of the datacenter have been confiscated without any reason. [1]

It is not clear why the raid was carried out at this particular time. However, Swedish national broadcaster Sveriges Television cite unnamed sources claiming that the raid was prompted by international political pressure by the US.

The Pirate Bay is known in the online file sharing community as one of the more prominent websites which distributes torrents that point to copyrighted material. In much of the world, offering such torrents would be illegal, but due to the nature of Swedish law, this is not the case. In July 2005, new anti-piracy legislation was enacted in Sweden; however, this did not affect The Pirate Bay which only offers .torrent files, which in and of themselves do not contain copyrighted material. The Pirate Bay is well known for the "legal" page it hosts featuring mockery of organizations sending copyright infringement notices and cease and desist letters to them.

(Google cache can help you to retrieve the static.thepiratebay.org/legal page)

For your amusement I retrieveded some responses:

1) reply to Sega:
I have the distinct pleasure of informing you that no Swedish trademark and/copyright law is being violated, regardless of how the situation may or may not be under UK law. I would advise you to read up on Swedish trademark law, more specifically Varumarkeslag (1960:644), as this might save you a great deal of future humiliation.

I would also advise you to
a) not write the subject all in UPPERCASE, as it makes spam filters go nuts
b) not attach meaningless data from trademark registrys in PDF format and
c) stop lying.

2) mail and reply (DreamWorks)
Date: Sat, 21 Aug 2004 18:21:43 -0100 (GMT)
From: anakata To: KMWLAW@flash.net
Subject: Re: Unauthorized Use of DreamWorks SKG Properties
On Mon, 23 Aug 2004 KMWLAW@flash.net wrote:
> Dennis L. Wilson, Esq.
> 9720 Wilshire Blvd., Penthouse Suite
> Beverly Hills, CA 90212
> Tel: (310) 248-3830
> Fax: (310) 860-0363
> August 23, 2004
> ThePirateBay.org
> Box 1206
> Stockholm 11479
> tracker-40-aa-5f-03-412675c8@prq.to
> Re: Unauthorized Use of DreamWorks SKG Properties > http://www.thepiratebay.org
> To Whom It May Concern:
> This letter is being written to you on behalf of our
> client, DreamWorks SKG (hereinafter DreamWorks).
> DreamWorks is the exclusive owner of all copyright,
> trademark and other intellectual property rights in
> and to the ^ÓShrek 2^Ô motion picture. No one is
> authorized to copy, reproduce, distribute, or
> otherwise use the ^ÓShrek 2^Ô motion picture without
> the express written permission of DreamWorks. [...]
> As you may be aware, Internet Service Providers can
> be held liable if they do not respond to claims of
> infringement pursuant to the requirements of the
> Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). In
> accordance with the DMCA, we request your assistance
> in the removal of infringements of the ^ÓShrek 2^Ô
> motion picture from this web site and any other sites
> for which you act as an Internet Service Provider.
> We further declare under penalty of perjury that we
> are authorized to act on behalf of DreamWorks and
> that the information in this letter is accurate.
> Please contact me immediately to discuss this matter
> further.

As you may or may not be aware, Sweden is not a state in the United States of America. Sweden is a country in northern Europe. Unless you figured it out by now, US law does not apply here. For your information, no Swedish law is being violated. Please be assured that any further contact with us, regardless of medium, will result in a) a suit being filed for harassment b) a formal complaint lodged with the bar of your legal counsel, for sending frivolous legal threats. It is the opinion of us and our lawyers that you are fucking morons, and that you should please go sodomize yourself with retractable batons. Please also note that your e-mail and letter will be published in full on http://www.thepiratebay.org. Go fuck yourself. Polite as usual, anakata