That didn't really identify any of the questions. You're suggesting
that counsel spend their time writing to agencies to ask about the
copyright status of programs with the intent of considering taking
them over, when we know almost nothing about them.
Since you've identified the people responsible and how to contact
them, if you care about this so much, you do it - and then come back
when you have information as basic as their copyright status or what
language they're even written in or whether they were even a success.
Legal should not be going on snipe hunts.
On Mon, Apr 18, 2016 at 10:10 AM, James Salsman <jsalsman(a)gmail.com> wrote:
Where do you
see legal standing being a factor...?
On further reflection, it would certainly be better to simply ask the
DARPA Crowdsourced Formal Verification (CSVF) Program Manager Daniel
Ragsdale, who has left DARPA and is now a Professor at Texas A&M
University, about the extent to which enhancing games with logic
puzzles produced crowdsourced assistance. I wonder whether they were
using first person shooters, flying birds, modified tic-tac-toe, or
Similarly for Rand Waltzman, who is now an Associate Director of
Research at Carnegie Mellon's Software Engineering Institute, about
the more interesting Social Media in Strategic Communication (SMISC)
program and the extent to which it and related programs in other
agencies have already involved Wikipedia. He might want to talk about
that because the program was not intended to be covert. As an open
program, it's very similar to multiple proposals from the community
we've seen recently. As a covert program, it's likely discoverable and
certainly referenceable in the lawsuit against the NSA as a means to
measure the extent to which such programs across the government have
resulted in law enforcement prosecutions from parallel construction
affecting people because of the Wikipedia articles readers have chosen
The director of the Broad Operational Language Translation (BOLT)
program, which was originally intended to be an open source and far
more fully-featured alternative to Google Translate, is still at DARPA
and the program is ongoing with software development partnerships at
ten universities and three private companies:
There is absolutely no question that the Foundation would directly
benefit tremendously if the BOLT program were returned to unclassified
free open source. Clearly that would not be in Google's interest at
As far as I can tell from
the only reason the BOLT program requires Top Secret clearance is
because the identities of wartime human translators are secret. I am
no expert on classification and declassification, other to have
noticed that even classification advocates say that there is far too
much of it.
Therefore I think it would be worth writing a letter asking that the
BOLT, SMISC, and CSFV be returned to open source to the extent
possible. This is the sort of thing that I imagine would take a few
hours at most by the people working on the NSA lawsuit asking for a
Mandatory Declassification Review per
If I am mistaken or if anyone thinks it is not a good idea to ask for
this, please let me know.
On Wed, Apr 13, 2016 at 7:53 AM, James Salsman <jsalsman(a)gmail.com> wrote:
we have absolutely no idea ... about the
stack [or] how much progress was made....
Can anyone think of another way to find out?
covert HUMINT or surveillance technology
If we publish the code, it's not covert anymore. We all deserve to see the
mentions of Wikipedia which occurred in the SMISC program and project
archives, if we want to protect our readers from whichever intelligence
agencies have hacked Foundation servers.
I selected BOLT and SMISC from
because they appeared compatible with Asimov's three laws of robotics, and
did not appear to be harmful. There is one project in there, CSFV which
could be actively harming the Foundation's ability to attract and retain
"Crowd Sourced Formal Verification (CSFV) is a DARPA program that aims to
investigate whether large numbers of non-experts can perform formal
verification faster and more cost-effectively than conventional processes.
The goal is to transform verification into a more accessible task by
creating fun, intuitive games that reflect formal verification problems.
Playing the games would effectively help software verification tools
complete corresponding formal verification proofs."
Doesn't that mean that the Foundation has the legal standing to see all
three of those projects published?
the other two being:
"The Broad Operational Language Translation (BOLT) program is aimed at
enabling communication with non-English-speaking populations and
identifying important information in foreign-language sources by: 1)
allowing English-speakers to understand foreign-language sources of
all genres, including chat, messaging and informal conversation; 2)
providing English-speakers the ability to quickly identify targeted
information in foreign-language sources using natural-language
queries; and 3) enabling multi-turn communication in text and speech
with non-English speakers. If successful, BOLT would deliver all
capabilities free from domain or genre limitations."
"The general goal of the Social Media in Strategic Communication
(SMISC) program is to develop a new science of social networks built
on an emerging technology base. Through the program, DARPA seeks to
develop tools to support the efforts of human operators to counter
misinformation or deception campaigns with truthful information."
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