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    Swedish Government report on digital collaboration platform technologies for the public sector puts Nextcloud front and centre as the key solution in this space

    Danie van der Merwe · / gadgeteerza-tech-blog · Tuesday, 7 December, 2021 - 09:55

The report was put together by 8 Swedish government agencies, including the Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency, the Swedish Transport Administration, the Swedish Companies Registration Office and the Försäkringskassan. The report gives an exhaustive definition of digital collaboration, noting the important components needed for teams to work together.

Nextcloud is already in use at the Swedish Transport Agency and the Swedish Social Insurance Agency, while Försäkringskassan offers authorities Nextcloud as a service.


#technology #opensource #sweden #government #nextcloud

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    Stockholm’s official schools app was a disaster. So annoyed parents built their own open source version — a good case for open APIs

    Danie van der Merwe · / gadgeteerza-tech-blog · Monday, 8 November, 2021 - 18:20

The Skolplattform, which has cost more than 1 billion Swedish Krona, SEK, ($117 million), has failed to match its initial ambition. Parents and teachers have complained about the complexity of the system—its launch was delayed, there have been reports of project mismanagement, and it has been labelled an IT disaster. The Android version of the app has an average 1.2 star rating.

A pity that the parents' open source alternative was originally so negatively received by the officials, but good that in the end there was acceptance. It goes to show though that with open data APIs, some tremendous innovation and improvements can be made available. There is nothing wrong with having two or three alternative apps to use. Application Program Interfaces (API) just need to differentiate between public data to be used vs data that an authenticated individual is allowed to access.


#technology #schools #sweden #opensource

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    Stefan Löfven back as Swedish PM weeks after no-confidence vote / TheGuardian · Wednesday, 7 July, 2021 - 15:02

Social Democrat leader says he will resign again if he cannot find majority support for a budget by autumn

Sweden’s parliament has backed the return of Stefan Löfven as prime minister, weeks after he became the first Swedish leader to lose a no-confidence vote .

But Löfven, a former union boss who guided the Social Democrats to power in 2014 and then moved the party to the right after inconclusive 2018 elections, has yet to find majority support for a budget and said he would resign again this autumn if he could not do so by then.

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    42,800+ ‘BitTorrent Pirates’ Targeted By Copyright Trolls in Sweden in 2020 / TorrentFreak · Monday, 16 November, 2020 - 11:34 · 4 minutes

copyright troll For at least a decade and half, a relatively small number of movie companies have pursued revenue streams outside of those traditionally associated with movie making.

In response to millions of Internet users sharing copies of movies using systems including BitTorrent, some companies have transformed this unlicensed sharing into a part of their business. Tracking IP addresses of sharers in swarms, this information is used to file lawsuits that demand the personal details of alleged pirates. From there, they are pressured into paying cash settlements of between hundreds and thousands of dollars.

These mass defendant lawsuits have hit dozens of countries around the world, with those in the US perhaps the most reported on. However, Europe is also a hotbed of litigation and in recent years Sweden has emerged as one of the most important battlegrounds. Thus far in 2020, that position remains unchanged.

ISP Bahnhof: “Blackmail Activity” is Still Flourishing

Since 2016, local ISP Bahnhof has dedicated resources to not only fight but also shine a light on ‘copyright-trolls’ in Sweden. With most other ISPs staying silent on the issue, Bahnhof diligently scours legal records in order to keep its customers and the broader public informed. The company has just published its report for 2020 and even with six weeks to go before the year concludes, the stats paint an important picture.

“Judging by this year’s court documents, the blackmail activity has lived and flourished just as in previous years, and has not slowed down or stopped as large parts of the rest of society have been forced to do this year,” Bahnhof reports, referencing the coronavirus pandemic.

“To date, 118 applications for information injunctions have been received by the Patent and Market Court from copyright holders who wish to request information about Internet users who are alleged to have shared files. Each application can in turn include anything from 20 up to several thousand Internet users.”

Personal Details Behind More Than 42,000 IP Addresses Sought

With 118 applications thus far in 2020, that is very nearly one demand for information every three days. However, it is the volume of IP addresses (one IP address has the potential to identify one subscriber) per application that is perhaps the most important factor.

For example, two applications filed on January 7 (both by law firm Next Advokater on behalf of Germany company Chrystalis Entertainment) requested the personal details behind 46 and 59 IP addresses respectively. However, another filed just a few days later by NJORD Law demanded information behind 1609 IP addresses on behalf of US adult company MG Premium Ltd.

Indeed, in 2020 law firms have demanded the personal details of up to 2,177 subscribers in a single application.

According to Bahnhof’s research, this means that thus far in 2020, the Patent and Market Court in Sweden has received demands to hand over the personal information behind 42,689 IP addresses, which could potentially mean the same number of subscribers having their personal details handed over.

For comparison, 49 separate court cases were filed in 2018 requesting ISPs to disclose the personal details of the account holders behind 35,711 IP addresses. During 2019, a total of 140 new applications were submitted to the Patent and Market Court, together targeting 60,368 IP addresses .

The Most ‘Vulnerable’ ISP is Telia

Bahnhof’s database of applications reveals some interesting information, including the ISP most vulnerable to having requests made against it for subscribers’ personal details. While other ISPs including Com Hem, Telenor, and Hi3G Access were targeted in 2020, out of the 42,689 IP addresses listed in all applications, 30,997 were disclosed by telecoms company Telia. But why?

“Telia is the largest ISP, and they also retain data for long periods of time,” Bahnhof’s Carolina Lindahl informs TorrentFreak.

“They therefore have a lot to offer so to speak, even if the requests concern IP-data from a few months back.”

The big contrast here is with Bahnhof itself, which has taken measures to ensure that its own customers aren’t caught up in the copyright settlement dragnet by limiting what information it stores and for how long.

“Bahnhof customers have been completely spared from this type of extortion letter because, in accordance with EU regulations, we have limited our storage and disclosure of privacy-sensitive customer data to what is absolutely necessary for law enforcement agencies in the event of serious crime,” the company says.

Copyright Trolls Are Only Interested in Movies

In common in other regions of the world where this type of legal action is prevalent, the companies engaged in it in Sweden are currently only interested in tracking down people who share movies. According to Carolina Lindahl, the vast majority of the disclosure requests relate to pornographic content, a situation that’s mirrored in the United States.

It’s unclear whether the Patent and Market Court has denied any requests for information in 2020 but Bahnhof says that most cases appear to be handled very quickly and without any scrutiny whatsoever.

“Some of these requests get a court ruling (where the copyright holder is granted access to the personal data behind the IP-addresses that are attached to that particular request) within one day. Since our IPRED copyright law states that probable cause for copyright infringement is enough to grant access to personal data, the court doesn’t bother examining any of the requests closely,” Lindahl concludes.

From: TF , for the latest news on copyright battles, piracy and more.

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    Trump advisor reportedly wants to let COVID-19 spread, repeat Sweden’s mistakes / ArsTechnica · Monday, 31 August, 2020 - 23:19

A serious man in a business suit sits with his hands folded in his lap.

Enlarge / Member of the coronavirus task force Scott Atlas listens to US President Donald Trump during a briefing at the White House August 10, 2020, in Washington, DC. (credit: Getty | BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI )

A new advisor to President Donald Trump is reportedly advocating that the pandemic coronavirus spread largely unrestrained so that the United States can reach “herd immunity”—an idea that infectious disease experts call “ absolutely absurd ,” “ simply wrong ,” and a strategy that actually amounts to the absence of a strategy, which could leave hundreds of thousands of more Americans dead.

Still, according to reporting by The Washington Post , the idea is being pushed by Scott Atlas, a neuroradiologist from Stanford’s conservative Hoover Institution, who began advising Trump in August. In his short tenure so far, Professor Atlas has repeatedly made statements contrary to scientific evidence, such as saying that children do not spread the virus .

Officials say Atlas was recruited to the advisory role counter the advice of Anthony Fauci, the country’s top infectious disease expert, and Deborah Birx, the White House coronavirus response coordinator. One senior administration official said Atlas, who has no background in infectious diseases, sees himself as the “anti-Dr. Fauci.”

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    What’s up with Sweden? / ArsTechnica · Saturday, 6 June, 2020 - 12:00 · 1 minute

State epidemiologist Anders Tegnell of the Public Health Agency of Sweden has admitted that the pandemic response he promotes hasn

Enlarge / State epidemiologist Anders Tegnell of the Public Health Agency of Sweden has admitted that the pandemic response he promotes hasn't worked out as well as he hoped. (credit: ANDERS WIKLUND/Getty Images)

Earlier this week, Sweden's government epidemiologist, Anders Tegnell , admitted that his plans for how the country should handle the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic hasn't quite worked out as he hoped , saying there's "quite obviously a potential for improvement in what we have done," according to one translation . There are probably very few public health officials on the planet who couldn't say the same. But Tegnell's admission made headlines, largely because Sweden has charted its own path, starting with relatively light restrictions compared to other European countries in the hope that the pandemic's economic impact would be blunted.

That approach has turned Sweden into a political talking point far from the Baltic Sea, with many people who would be horrified by Sweden's taxation levels and social safety net suddenly adopting it as a model of minimal government intervention. The role of Sweden in Internet arguments grew increasingly large as opposition to social distancing measures became organized in a number of countries. So, with the country's coronavirus plan architect saying mistakes were made, it's worth taking a look at how Sweden handled the pandemic—and what the results have been.

The plan and its economics

Some countries in Europe, like Italy and Spain, were faced with a rapid surge in cases early in the pandemic; others had the examples of Italy and Spain to guide their policy. The end result was that most European countries imposed pretty severe social distancing regulations, banning large gatherings, closing schools, and limiting access to a variety of businesses. In most cases, this has limited the spread of the pandemic, or at least it started to bring an out-of-control situation back into something more manageable.

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