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Slashback: OSS, Lawsuits, History

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 8 years ago | from the where-are-my-flying-cars dept.

Slashback 170

Slashback tonight brings some corrections, clarifications, and updates to previous Slashdot stories, including Record Label civil war, more big-business software getting tossed into open source, US Government says 2008 IPv6 still on track, EU Warned Microsoft source code not enough, RIM celebrates a victory in Germany, 10th planet a reality, and looking forward to the year 2001 -- Read on for details.

Record Label Supports Accused File-Sharer. arabagast writes "The Nettwerk Music Group has said it will pay for the defense of David Greubel. Greubel is the defendant in a complaint filed by the RIAA in a U.S. District Court in Fort Worth, Texas accusing him of having 600 illegally downloaded music files on his home computer."

Qluster's OpenQRM goes OSS. Decibel writes "While Microsoft, Oracle and now IBM have made news by releasing free versions of their databases, other companies have gone one better and released versions of their products as OSS. Qlusters is one example, in that they just released OpenQRM. The CTO's previous company (Symbiot) also made a similar play, releasing OpenSIMS. Could this be the start of a change to where commercial software starts melding more and more into OSS?"

US Government says 2008 IPv6 still on track. DrkShadow writes to tell us that the Government is holding fast to their 2008 IPv6 switch commitment. From the article: "The White House Office of Management and Budget said it would issue a policy memorandum dictating full federal 'IPv6' compliance in an effort to spur its deployment throughout government agencies."

EU Warned Microsoft source code not enough. Joe Barr writes "According to WindowsITPro, the Wall Street Journal has obtained a copy of a confidential memo sent from the EU to Microsoft last month which warned Microsoft that an offer of the source code would not be enough to satisfy the EU's requirements for interoperability. Open source advocates have blasted the offer because it lacks the knowledge required to interoperate with Windows behind its IP licensing, thus making it unusable."

RIM celebrates a victory in Germany. PDG writes "Looks like not everything is going bad for RIM as they have recently won another patent based lawsuit, but this time in Germany. At least they don't have all their legal eggs in one basket."

10th planet a reality. smooth wombat writes "After measuring twice and cutting once, a team of German astrophysicists at the University of Bonn led by Frank Bertoldi have concluded that the object located beyond the orbit of Pluto and named 2003 UB313, is 435 miles larger in diameter than Pluto. As a result, there will be increasing pressure on the IAU (International Astronomical Union) to classify this object as the 10th planet. From the article: '"It is now increasingly hard to justify calling Pluto a planet if UB313 is not also given this status," Bertoldi said.'"

Looking forward to the year 2001. ChristianNerds writes "Atari Magazine is serving up an article written in 1989 concerning what the next century would be like. From the article: 'A typical morning in the year 2001: You wake up, scan the custom newspaper that's spilling from your fax, walk into the living room. There you speak to a giant screen on the wall, part of which instantly becomes a high-quality TV monitor. When you leave for work, you carry a smart wallet, a computer the size of a credit card. When you come home, you slip on special eyeglasses and stroll through a completely artificial world.' They got a great deal right, like the spread of optical disk usage, the internet (ISDN), and parallel processing."

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I hate Slashdot. (-1, Troll)

Blakey Rat (99501) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621657)

I hate Slashdot.

Re:I hate Slashdot. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14621681)

VERY good point!

I also agree.

As Einstein once said... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14621658)

"Imagination is more important than knowledge."

Artificial World (4, Insightful)

biocute (936687) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621669)

stroll through a completely artificial world

Must be wOw, SecondLife or The Sims.

Re:Artificial World (4, Insightful)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621983)

Or working in a cubicle for 8 hrs a day.

that's a fairly artifical world if you ask me.

"US Government says 2008 IPv6 still on track." (0, Redundant)

scenestar (828656) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621679)

slashback me again when it is finally done.

Re:"US Government says 2008 IPv6 still on track." (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14621801)

Sweet in 2008 I'll be able to play duke nukem forever on my phantom console using IPv6

Slashback: Slashdot Has Really Jumped The Shark (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14621682)

Am I the only one here that notices that slashdot has gotten so political lately, it's a shadow of its former self now.

Everyday, it's nonstop YRO, and Politics (btw, stories that have hardly any real politics in them), and Patents and Big Brother. Jeezus, we get it!! Slashdot thinks the sky is falling and Bush is the Devil, you don't need to beat us over the head with it everyday.

It's sad, but me and many other people get their real nerd news from digg.com, and then scan here to see if any good stuff shows up here to discuss.

The day slashdot introduced politics was their jump the shark moment. It's only been proven more true.

10th planet (4, Funny)

brian0918 (638904) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621704)

It seems like the IAU could pin down a definition of what a "planet" is by setting some cutoff based on the object's gravitational effect on the Sun, which fall off as 1/r^2, so that even though the object is slightly larger than Pluto, it is so much farther away from the Sun than Pluto that its gravitational influence is below some arbitrary cutoff.

Re:10th planet (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14621775)

"It seems like the IAU could pin down a definition of what a "planet" is by setting some cutoff based on the object's gravitational effect on the Sun, which fall off as 1/r^2, so that even though the object is slightly larger than Pluto, it is so much farther away from the Sun than Pluto that its gravitational influence is below some arbitrary cutoff."

but then my balls would no longer be considered planets

Re:10th planet (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14621792)

Don't worry, this would probably only affect your balls if they were farthe away than Pluto. If that's the case, then you have greater things to worry about than if they're listed as planets.

Re:10th planet (5, Funny)

brian0918 (638904) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621797)

"Don't worry, this would probably only affect your balls if they were farthe away than Pluto. If that's the case, then you have greater things to worry about than if they're listed as planets."

I can see the book now... "Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus, Women have sent Men's Balls into a Trans-Neptunian Orbit"

Re:10th planet (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14622029)

This post craves mod points. If only I wasn't too lazy to sign up.

Re:10th planet (1, Insightful)

kfg (145172) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621803)

Yes, this would work, if you, for some reason, wanted to arbitrarily limit the number of Heliocentric planets to nine.

KFG

Uhhh, not quite so easy. (2, Interesting)

jd (1658) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621813)

It would mean they'd have to reclassify all of the planets without stars for the same reason. And nobody is going to seriously suggest that a gas ball 100s of times the size of Jupiter is an asteroid or a comet. For a start, the press would crucify them.


It would be reasonable to define a planet in terms of composition and structure (and I've argued that case before) - the problem with that is that you'd need to define something as an unknown until you actually did enough of a geological survey to determine those things. I'm not sure NASA or the ESA would object too loudly, provided they got the funding. Missions like that make for great photo ops, as well as good science. Astronomers would likely complain, though, as it would mean they couldn't prove anything (other than gas giants) were planets.


Actually, when you get right down to it, NASA and the ESA have more money and more political clout than the IAU, so maybe that would actually be practical to enforce.

Re:Uhhh, not quite so easy. (1)

brian0918 (638904) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621877)

"It would mean they'd have to reclassify all of the planets without stars for the same reason. And nobody is going to seriously suggest that a gas ball 100s of times the size of Jupiter is an asteroid or a comet. For a start, the press would crucify them."

Am I the only one for whom this statement made absolutely no sense? We were talking about a lower limit, not an upper limit... and we were talking about our Solar System. Defining planets as asteroids or comets??? Where did that come from?

Re:Uhhh, not quite so easy. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14621950)

Where did that come from? It was your suggestion! If you define a planet in terms of mass versus distance from a star, then extrasolar gas giants cannot be considered planets. Or were you suggesting two rules for deciding whether something is a planet or not - one rule for our solar system, and one rule for everywhere else in the universe?

I don't think that word means what you think it me (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14622078)

Sol is not the only star in the universe.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Extrasolar_planet [wikipedia.org]

Re:Uhhh, not quite so easy. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14622151)

Oh I see now. You were just being an asshole about it.

He was talking about defining a planet in terms of mass versus distance from THEIR HOST star. Not all planets in the universe in terms of mass versus distance from our own Sol. Only an asshole would attempt to take that as his intention. Any definitive cut-off for our solar system would work for any other solar system in defining a planet in terms of mass versus distance from the host star.

Re:Uhhh, not quite so easy. (1)

monkeydo (173558) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622450)

So, do all planets have to orbit a star?

Re:Uhhh, not quite so easy. (1)

AoT (107216) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622540)

And what if they do not have a host star?

Re:10th planet (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14621875)

Hey there. You make a very convincing and logical point, illustrating my exact sentiments. However, if you would allow me to correlate one concept with your very keen wisdom; all those years standing naked in front of a mirror taught me that "size doesn't matter"...

If it did, I'd say my self indulgent delusions are wrong, and we should just throw out Pluto all together and stick with just 8 good planets.

Re:10th planet (3, Interesting)

Petrushka (815171) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621886)

I figure if you take UB313 as having a density of 6 kg/m^3 (very dense) and diameter 340,000 (largest estimate), and take its minimum distance from the sun (37 AU), it exerts roundabout the same gravitational force on the sun as an object of about 7 x 10^14 kg at a distance of 1 AU from the sun.

So by your definition Phobos and Deimos - at a distance of 1.3 to 1.7 AU from the sun - would both be planets.

In case anyone isn't aware, Phobos and Deimos are really small ...

Re:10th planet (1)

brian0918 (638904) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621904)

According to this [slashdot.org] , the object orbits at 52-62 AU, not 37 AU, but I wouldn't put it past the Slashdot editors to be wrong. How does Pluto compare to Phobos and Deimos?

Re:10th planet (2, Informative)

kfg (145172) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621962)

How does Pluto compare to Phobos and Deimos?

How would you like to walk around an equator in less than an hour?

Don't walk too fast though, you might achieve orbital velocity, or even escape if you tried to jog.

KFG

Re:10th planet (5, Funny)

CharlesDonHall (214468) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621921)

I think we should just decide based on the name.

If the Romans named one of their Gods after it (e.g. Pluto), then it's a planet. If it's named after a person (Hale-Bopp) then it's a comet. If the name is just some random string of letters (UB313) then it's an asteroid.

(Note: Under this system, the asteroids Juno, Pallas, Vesta, etc. would be reclassified as planets.)

Re:10th planet (1, Insightful)

mrchaotica (681592) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622212)

If the Romans named one of their Gods after it (e.g. Pluto)

(Note: Under this system, the asteroids Juno, Pallas, Vesta, etc. would be reclassified as planets.)
But Pluto still wouldn't be, because it wasn't the Romans who named it.

In fact, I can't recall -- did the Romans know about any planets beyond Jupiter? It would be kind of silly to re-classify Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune as asteroids!

Re:10th planet (2, Interesting)

n54 (807502) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622008)

Interesting idea but as other replies have pointed out it would need more details and some sort of excuse for rogue planets.

Personally I'm not overly concerned about the classification debate but privately I view any object with large enough mass to compress itself by gravity into a spheroid shape as a planet unless it orbits another such planet in which case I see it as a moon. Yes that means Ceres [wikipedia.org] is a planet imo and that Pluto/Charon is a double moon with two additional moons P1 & P2... lol at least the discussion should show people how diverse our solar system is :)

If one takes spheroid shape as the starting point one can still continue the debate to ones hearts delight by arguing over subgroups such as "miniature planets" and what should be the criteria for each subgroup.

excellent way (1)

r00t (33219) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622069)

I like that. If it isn't round, it isn't a planet. We can allow for minor mountains like Earth has, and a slightly squished shape from high rotation like Saturn has. but not some potato-shaped thing.

Sorry: if potato-shaped things can't be planets... (2, Interesting)

tlambert (566799) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622291)

Sorry: if potato-shaped things can't be planets...

Then we physicists are in a lot of trouble: the only thing we ever teach students to calculate moments of inertia on are rigid bodies. And, as any physicist knows, "a general rigid body is a potato-shaped object, able to undergo rotational and translational motion. It may be considered to be assembled out of a large number of point masses."

The only way any of these calculations make sense for planets is if we assume planets are also potato-shaped.

We can only thank God the Michelson-Morley experiment proved once and for all that the Earth was at the center of the universe by demonstrating that an Earth-based experment observed no drift through the luminiferous aether, or we'd all be in deep doo-doo...

-- Terry

Re:10th planet (1)

taylortbb (759869) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622319)

One of the most interesting definition I've heard of so far is that something is a planet if it dominates gravitationally in the area. This would mean that Pluto isn't a planet and wouldn't give an arbitrary size for is/isn't a planet. It also means that an astroid belt of very large astroids wouldn't all have to be planets, if something like that ever were to be found in another solar system.

Re:10th planet (1)

squeemey (925509) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622384)

You've got problems with this.

What do you define as spherical? The earth has its bumps and valleys also. How arbitrarily spherical should it be defined?

It would be better to say that a planet IN OUR SOLAR SYSTEM has to be not only heliocentric, but in the same plain as the first eight planets.

For other sysetems yet to be discovered, set the definition to fit the properties and/or characteristics.

Re:10th planet (1)

SlayerDave (555409) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622608)

If it were up to me, I'd define a planet as a body that:

1. Has sufficient gravity to have formed into a spheroid (arbitrarily defined)

2. Orbits a star and not some other body orbiting the star (to exclude moons)

3. Is not a comet

Obviously my definition has as much ambiguity as the original poster's, but it seems to my (non-astronomer's) mind to capture the basic characteristics of a planet.

Yes, where IS my flying car? (5, Funny)

ursabear (818651) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621710)

I was promised a flying car, dangit!

It is a good thing, however that not all predictions come true.

Re:Yes, where IS my flying car? (1)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621799)

I'm sorry, but when they cancelled the monorail here in Seattle, the Big 5 Automakers had to cancel production of the Flying Car, due to concerns over personal injury lawsuits.

But you can still use your jetpack, so no problems!

Re:Yes, where IS my flying car? (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622061)

They have them, there called "Airplanes".
They even have there own special place to be stored called "AirPorts".

Re:Yes, where IS my flying car? (1)

JanneM (7445) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622089)

I was promised a flying car, dangit!

As you hint, and others like to point out, there is no way we could have widespread personal flying transportation like that due to legal issues.

But of course, would the car be invented today, it would most likely not be allowed either - having tons of steel hurtle down the streets as high speed, only inches from where people are walking - there'd be a class-action lawsuit happening within ten second of the first vehicle hitting anything.

Re:Yes, where IS my flying car? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14622293)

It would probably work if the vehicle were programmed to hit only lawyers. Hence, no lawsuits.

Paralegals are safe.

Re:Yes, where IS my flying car? (1)

jonwil (467024) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622600)

Start small and allow flying cars but only if you have a proper pilots licence and know how to fly airplanes. That way, anyone flying one would know how to avoid mid-air collisions etc.

CEOs, business executives and anyone else rich enough could just hire "pilot chauffers" (after all, they generally already have personal drivers) and avoid being stuck in traffic.

Slowly more people would buy "flying cars" (as the prices fell) and get the requisite pilots licence to fly them.

Re:Yes, where IS my flying car? (1)

Verteiron (224042) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622680)

So let China build 'em. When all X billion of China's citizens have a flying car, it'll be too late to legislate them out of existence.

Re:Yes, where IS my flying car? (1)

netringer (319831) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622441)

The problem is not when you'll get the flying car, it's how much is it worth to you? [viewaskew.com]

Re:Yes, where IS my flying car? (1)

Jamey (10635) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622705)

> It is a good thing, however that not all predictions come true.

Damn straight! "Now all restaurants are Taco Bell."

That movie has too many right predictions already!

NTP just lost a BIG one. (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14621711)

U.S. patent office rules in RIM's favour again
http://www.cbc.ca/story/business/national/2006/02/ 01/rim-060201.html [www.cbc.ca]

NTP has 30 days to respond to the non-final rejection of its 5 critical patents against RIM. There is a court date on February 24, 2006 to start the shutdown of the RIM network in the U.S. It is going to be an interesting court case.

If by 2008 we'll be finally using IPv6 (4, Interesting)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621738)

I guess I can quit holding my breath.

I remember last century wondering if IPv6 would ever get implemented.

Guess a few billion Chinese with email addresses and IP-enabled devices probably forced the issue, huh? That plus the fact that my fridge, toaster, TV, computers, and microwave oven all have IP addresses ...

Re:If by 2008 we'll be finally using IPv6 (2, Informative)

Luban Doyle (702882) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621802)

Actually the Chinese are using IPv6 in quite a few places already. We aren't because od CIDRing and keeping machines behind firewalls and routers which allow you to use addresses that aren't used/routable on the Internet (10.x.x.x, 172.16.x.x to 172.32.x.x and 192.168.x.x)

Re:If by 2008 we'll be finally using IPv6 (1)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621830)

Actually the Chinese are using IPv6 in quite a few places already.

Now, that would make a great /. story!

See, I didn't know they were already using IPv6 in China.

Re:If by 2008 we'll be finally using IPv6 (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621870)

this has been the plan for a while.
Nothing new here.

IPv6 (3, Interesting)

wesw02 (846056) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621747)

I my self have not yet messed with IPv6, but I am curious if anyone knows of or works for a business that is currently using IPv6, if so what issues are you having with it?

My problems aren't technical (3, Informative)

numbski (515011) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622178)

My problem with IPv6 is fiscal. I go to ARIN and want to deploy a community wireless network using all IPv6. They want to charge me just as much for IPv6 addresses as they're charging for IPv4. What's worse, is that if I do use IPv6, I still have to pay for IPv4 addresses so that I can translate for the rest of the world, as IPv6 addresses can easily go to a IPv4 subnet, but the reverse is not true, I have to do some form of translation. :\

So basically ICANN is causing the slowed adoption themselves. It's either $1200/yr for IPv4, or $2400/yr for IPv6. Take a wild guess what I'll wind up doing despite wanting to use IPv6. :(

Re:My problems aren't technical (1)

wesw02 (846056) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622285)

Really?! From what I heard ICANN is trying to push IPv6, that does not seem like a very good incentive to me.

"Use IPv6 it's new, it's better, and it's more expensive"

As you stated the reverse subnet for IPv4 to IPv6 requires some translation, I am curious what that translation is like and how much work is actually required to make this work?

Re:My problems aren't technical (3, Informative)

schon (31600) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622699)

I go to ARIN and want to deploy a community wireless network using all IPv6. They want to charge me just as much for IPv6 addresses as they're charging for IPv4.

I call bullshit. [arin.net]

From the link:
Organizations that are General Members in good standing prior to requesting an initial IPv6 allocation are not charged IPv6 registration fees. Annual renewal fees for IPv6 allocations are also waived for General Members in good standing. ARIN will continue to waive these fees as long as the organization remains a General Member in good standing at the time of renewal, up until Dec. 31, 2006.


Also, if you do have to pay, that page shows that IPV6 addresses are less expensive than IPV4, because the blocks are larger. An IPV4 /21 (2048 addresses) costs the same amount as an IPV6 /48 (1.2e24 addresses)

Re:IPv6 (1)

wesw02 (846056) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622940)

All this talk about IPv6, has stirred up my curiosity about IPv6 intergration. Possibley someone can answer me this, are we going to slowly move over to IPv6 (a few servers at a time), or is there going to be some set date that everything is going to switch (having a set date to switch seems to me like it's asking for a catastrophe).

from the cnn article on pluto's successor (1)

awing0 (545366) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621753)

...concluded a space body located in the outer reaches of the solar system is 435 miles (700 kilometers) larger than Pluto, the smallest planet.
brWTF does that mean? Are we speaking circumference, diameter, radius, surface area? Who writes these articles?

It's diameter (1)

jd (1658) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621844)

But it's along the longest side. The shortest side is only about 2/3rds the diameter of Pluto. (The new object is extremely squished, which led to a lot of problems on determining the actual size and whether it had a moon or not.)

10th planet: Proserpine? (1)

Spy der Mann (805235) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621859)

From TFA:

Scientists determined 2003 UB313's diameter is about 1,864 miles (3,000 kilometers), which is 435 miles (700 kilometers) larger than Pluto.


I wonder what name they'll come up with. I would choose "Proserpine", Pluto's wife. [online-mythology.com]

Re:10th planet: Proserpine? (1)

awing0 (545366) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622043)

I realize it did specify later, but why not mention a huge freakin' detail in the article summary?

Re:10th planet: Proserpine? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14622133)

Rupert.

Re:from the cnn article on pluto's successor (2, Funny)

Lithgon (896737) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621998)

435 miles larger in uselessness.

Looking forward to the Year 2000 slashback (2, Funny)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621763)

I notice that they talk about how we'll all be using ISDN.

Maybe I should turn off the Gigapop Internet we use at the UW, huh?

Re:Looking forward to the Year 2000 slashback (2, Informative)

Detritus (11846) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621994)

ISDN was a worthwhile technology, putting a low-latency multiplexed digital communications link on existing copper wiring. The problem, at least in the USA, was how it was marketed, priced, and promoted by the telephone companies. The telephone companies wanted to push centrex and the "intelligent" circuit-switched network. They had no interest in selling cheap packet-switched data links to individuals and small businesses. They hate the concept of the dumb network. There's no great profit to be made running a dumb network.

Re:Looking forward to the Year 2000 slashback (1)

monkeydo (173558) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622504)

ISDN is circuit switched, and is far from a "dumb" network. Additionally PRI's are in extrememly wide use as voice trunks in the US.

Re:Looking forward to the Year 2000 slashback (1)

jonwil (467024) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622536)

Also, ISDN is quite common as a backup link.

So a company might have T1 or Frame Relay or Fibre or whatever as the main link to the outside world but will then have an ISDN BRI link in case the main link fails.

Wow. It did happen. (4, Interesting)

Teresh (911815) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621766)

"Looking forward to the year 2001. ChristianNerds writes "Atari Magazine is serving up an article written in 1989 concerning what the next century would be like. From the article: 'A typical morning in the year 2001: You wake up, scan the custom newspaper that's spilling from your fax, walk into the living room. There you speak to a giant screen on the wall, part of which instantly becomes a high-quality TV monitor. When you leave for work, you carry a smart wallet, a computer the size of a credit card. When you come home, you slip on special eyeglasses and stroll through a completely artificial world.' They got a great deal right, like the spread of optical disk usage, the internet (ISDN), and parallel processing."

I get custom RSS feeds, that pretty much counts as a custom newspaper for me. I've seen voice-controlled switches and HDTVs, wouldn't surprise me that some people have connected the two. American Express makes Blue, a credit card that is quite really a computer. I haven't seen the virtual world like described, but most MMORPGs would count if your monitor is big enough.

Wow. I never thought predictions of the new millennium would be accurate. Turns out they were mostly right. :O

2001: A web oddysey (4, Interesting)

Spy der Mann (805235) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621781)

The prediction guys aren't quite wrong. they just got some ideas 10 or 20 years ahead.

Voice recognition: Check.
E-paper on the wall: Kinda, but the technology's there.
3-D glasses: Well um...

Vast amounts of information: "With instant referencing of thousands of volumes of information, computing will be like working with an army of electronic elves, all ready to fetch in a flash any tidbit you like."

They got it half right... had they thought about the internet, they might have figured about Google and Wikipedia. No, Encarta doesn't count. It sucks :P

"It'll also allow you to store audio and video". DivX - check :)
""You'll be able to capture segments of a show you like, cut them out, and put them in a video report for school."
TiVo is here :) but companies' interests kinda screwed that up. However, Google video search is here, too :)

Hmmm. Pretty interesting.

Re:2001: A web oddysey (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14621835)

Do you say encarta sucks because encarta sucks, or do you say encarta sucks because it is the slashdrone thing to say? Personally I have stopped using Wikipedia because with recent events, I can no longer be certain that anything that I read there has not been tainted by someone with an agenda.

Re:2001: A web oddysey (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14621996)

Do you say encarta sucks because encarta sucks, or do you say encarta sucks because it is the slashdrone thing to say? Personally I have stopped using Wikipedia because with recent events, I can no longer be certain that anything that I read there has not been tainted by someone with an agenda.

Do you know of a source where you can be CERTAIN that nothing will be tainted by someone with an agenda?

[cue hazy comments about degrees of certainty]

In my opinion, that bit about having thousands of electronic elves working for us has come true pretty precisely, not just half right. Too bad most seem to take it all for granted now. I wish I had the internet when I was 8, or even 15. Having to wait until my mid 20s was BS and I blame God, the government, evolution, cmndrtaco, and a few other people/things/principles.

Re:2001: A web oddysey (1)

Keruo (771880) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621893)

> computing will be like working with an army of electronic elves

So Packet Loss occurs because of the underpant gnomes?(or should we call them transport layer gnomes instead?)

1. steal tcp packet
2. ???
3. profit

Re:2001: A web oddysey (2, Funny)

AoT (107216) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622652)

That's Gnu/Gnomes to you!

IBM's polarized LCD monitor (1)

jd (1658) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621907)

I saw many demos, at SC|05, of 3D glasses using polarized light from a single monitor using polarized light. It was actually very good. You can do full colour, because the glasses are not colour filters. In fact, you can get a wider range of colours, because the different views needn't use the same colour for the same pixel. The effect is vastly superior to the two colour glasses and doesn't leave you with the headaches that the shutter-glasses (where each eye was blanked alternately) did.


The drawback is that it only produces 3D if you are in the same plane as the polarizing filter AND are in roughly a direct line with the center of the image.


An alternative 3D glasses system would be the Virtual Reality goggles, which are still nowhere near where they could be. you can't get the resolution you'd want using a LCD screen. There have been reports of the military experimenting with systems that project onto the retina using (very low power) lasers, and even using transmitters to stimulate the optic nerve directly, but I know of no reliable information on where those technologies currently are.


But as for 3D glasses - they're around and they're improving.

Re:2001: A web oddysey (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14621924)

>""You'll be able to capture segments of a show you like, cut them out, and put them in a video report for school."

Ha! And you'll get hit with an IP lawsuit the very next day... (if it takes then even *that* long).

Re:2001: A web oddysey (1)

marktoml (48712) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621969)

>computing will be like working with an army of electronic elves

A mutinous army it seems (on most days)

Re:2001: A web oddysey (2, Funny)

mrchaotica (681592) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622262)

Not mutinous; just stupid. Come to think of it, that would make a great tagline:

"Google Search: Like an army of elves -- just really, really stupid ones."

Wait just a minute (4, Funny)

SeanTobin (138474) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621786)

From TFA:
McBride, however, disagreed, saying litigation doesn't benefit artists.

"Litigation is not 'artist development,'" McBride said. "Litigation is a deterrent to creativity and passion and it is hurting the business I love. The current actions of the RIAA are not in my artists' best interests."
So now I'm supposed to cheer for someone named McBride?

Re:Wait just a minute (1)

ClamIAm (926466) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622805)

There once was a man named McBride
Who fell down an outhouse and died
McBride had a brother
Who fell down another
And now they're interred side by side.

--My Grandfather

(PS: if you don't get it, say the word "interred" slowly, out loud)

Is OSS documentation any better? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14621842)

"Microsoft had previously turned over 12,000 pages of technical information describing software protocols that developers could use to interact with Windows Server products. But the EU says that its technical experts spent over 42 hours working on very simple applications that interact with those protocols, and they couldn't get anything to work. The experts called Microsoft's documentation "totally unusable" and complained that it lacks an index, illustrations, or even section headings. Developers at companies such as IBM, Novell, Oracle, and Sun Microsystems also all complained that the documentation was unusable, the report notes."

Is Open Source documnetation any better?

Re:Is OSS documentation any better? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14621878)

Yes. Behold, the power of hyperlinking!

Re:Is OSS documentation any better? (1)

cswiger2005 (905744) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622010)

That depends on which Open Source project you consider, of course. I happen to think that Apache, MySQL, Samba have pretty good documentation for what they do, as does FreeBSD, and even Sun's documentation for OpenSolaris is extremely good.

Re:Is OSS documentation any better? (1)

PigIronBob (885337) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622556)

By virtue of the fact that it exists, i would have to say YES

Re:Is OSS documentation any better? (1)

ajdlinux (913987) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622910)

Doxygen [doxygen.org] . Combined with KDevelop or similar IDE, it produces quite good API docs.

UB313's name (1)

renrutal (872592) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621843)

Hopefully it will be named Persephone [wikipedia.org] , for the delight of Douglas Adams, Arthur C. Clarke's and Star Trek fans.

OK, had to be said (3, Funny)

real gumby (11516) | more than 8 years ago | (#14621972)

1989 is calling. They want their 2001 back.

2001, information, and IP (4, Insightful)

lilmouse (310335) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622016)

It's funny how so many of the things fortold in 1989 aren't around today - but not because of technological limitations! Consider these:

  • Desktop libraries - sure, we've got wikipedia, but not in 2001, and there is still *vast* amounts of stuff out there we can't have today. Why not? IP.
  • Remote controls that let you automatically record a set of TV shows. Sure, there's Tivo...but even Tivo doesn't want you to be able to watch this stuff whenever you want! You're expected to pay money for it.


So many people dreamed of unfettered access to vast amounts of knowledge thanks to the internet... And we do have vast amount of access - but no authoritative, complete libraries at our fingertips. Companies have managed to lay claim to information, and it's no longer shared with everyone, but kept in chains.

Welcome to the 21st century!

--LWM

Re:2001, information, and IP (1)

ClamIAm (926466) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622825)

The Internet: allowing a Library of Alexandria available to all, yet denied by a few.

Re:2001, information, and IP (2, Insightful)

RedWizzard (192002) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622932)

Remote controls that let you automatically record a set of TV shows. Sure, there's Tivo...but even Tivo doesn't want you to be able to watch this stuff whenever you want!
MythTV certainly lets you do whatever you want with your recordings. Or do only commercial solutions count?
And we do have vast amount of access - but no authoritative, complete libraries at our fingertips.
We're probably there in terms of what many people in 1989 were thinking of. If you need to find out about something you can do that online whereas back then you'd have had to go to a library. As for authoritative, well that's a debatable point about regular libraries too - just because you read something in a book doesn't make it automatically true.

What we don't have is online access to most specific works. I can't look something up in "The Art of Computer Programming" online, for example. But even that situation is slowly improving.

Re:2001, information, and IP (2, Informative)

Guspaz (556486) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622962)

They DID get a surprising amount correct, though. The big thing they missed out on is the internet (and the ubiquity of it). It supplants a lot of their other predictions.

Their pridictions about optical storage going up 50x in size from 656MB was a bit off. By 2001, I think we only had DVD-RW, a mere ~15x increase. By 2006, though, we've got 50GB BluRay rewritables, a 78x increase. So they were just off by a few years.

Another interesting thing they got right was CD-ROMs being able to store higher quality sound than audio CDs. A CD-ROM today can store 24-bit 96khz 5.1 audio with a greater playing time than a similar audio CD. So the quality increase is there too (~1.2 megabits is a LOT of bits to work with for compressed digital audio), and the technology to do so was around in 2001 (DVDs, for example, use compressed 24-bit audio).

RIAA (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14622025)

Just wondering, could this be defended in court:

"I discovered that my Windows machine had been remotely hacked, and the hacker had downloaded a heap of mp3s, and was sharing them on p2p. A friend helped me work this out, because I don't know much about computers. I don't even like the music they downloaded. I've now deleted the mp3s, and Windows. I'm running Ubuntu now, so hopefully this won't happen again."

thoughts?

Re:RIAA (1)

zcat_NZ (267672) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622101)

That's a great arguement.

Now all you need is to match the RIAA dollar-for-dollar in lawyers fees and you just might have a case!

Definition of a planet? (1)

ArbitraryConstant (763964) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622055)

I've given this a bit of thought, and it seems to me that the term "planet" demands that the object have some special property that sets it apart from all the countless bodies in a solar system.

The only thing I can think of that makes sense in light of these new objects being discovered in the outer solar system is that the object must dominate its orbit. This excludes Pluto, since it crosses the orbit of Neptune, but that seems to be a much more elegant solution than the mental gymnastics it takes to include Pluto but exclude all the many other trans-Neptunian objects out there. The problem seems to be that too many people are unwilling to allow Pluto to lose its planet status.

Honestly, the trans-Neputnian objects probably need their own classification system that allows for larger bodies like Pluto and UB313 to have the recognition they deserve.

Re:Definition of a planet? (1)

kfg (145172) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622122)

. . .the trans-Neputnian objects probably need their own Big Rock classification system . . .

KFG

Re:Definition of a planet? (1)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622320)

Actually, Pluto only seems to cross Neptune's orbit if everything's drawn in two dimensions. In a three-dimaensional view, it's clear that the orbits don't really cross even though there are times that Pluto's nearer to the Sun than Neptune, such as happened at the end of the last century. Even if Pluto and Neptune were right at the "crossing point" at the same time, they'd still be several billion miles apart.

Re:Definition of a planet? (1)

robbak (775424) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622387)

Me Too!,/AOL>

Reasonable size, dominant object in orbit, near-circular orbit, near orbital plane. Yes, they made a mistake calling Pluto a planet, but that's no reason to repeat the mistake.

The other option is to recognise that the word 'planet' is no longer a scientific term, and let the newspapers call whatever they like a planet. It may cause less angst, and less slashdot articles!

Botched conversions... (1)

luvirini (753157) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622095)

No... 3000km with the resolution they have does not equate 1,864 miles.. I think there is probably at most 2 significant digits in the 3000. So... 1900 or 2000 miles would likely be much better number. I wonder where they recruit science writers....

Predictions for 2001 (2, Insightful)

jonwil (467024) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622468)

They got some right and some wrong.

Optical disks DID take off in a big way.
Digital libraries DID arrive (although google and wikipedia and the like appeared instead of the vision of optical disks full of information, mostly thanks to the .com boom and the broadband revolution.
HDTV is here on the tech side but the content providers are holding it back by instisting on locking it up with copy protection.

ISDN as a protocol didnt really take off, it got replaced by Fibre Optic links, DSL, Cable and Wireless. But the idea of a global interconnected network did arrive.

We still dont have the vision of a true "multimedia" center yet (people dont want to use their computer, email, internet etc in the living room, they want to do it in the office). Although devices like the X-Box with XBMC or MCE, Tivo and others are moving towards the idea of being able to have ALL your media in one place (although again the media corps want to lock it up with copy protection and stop all this)

Best quote from the article "The personal computer as we know it will persist longer in the home than in business," he predicts. "But by 1996-1997, they'll start to disappear. They'll become a low-end commodity like the typewriter". Like thats gonna happen.

Also "Movies will probably be squirted into the home through the telecommunications lines and compressed into eight seconds on the erasable disk in your living room". Yeah right, like hollywood is going to allow THAT to happen :)

Voice Recognition has never really taken off, probobly because its such a pain in the ass to use. (plus, in order for it to be accurate, you have to spend a large amount of time training it to recognize your voice).

The VCR isnt dead yet but the Tivo and friends are clearly gaining. If they werent so expensive, I would buy one just so I could record all the stuff I cant watch because I have to go to work.

Home automation by computer never quite made it, no idea why though. (cost?)

The musings on portability reflect PDAs like palms and pocket PCs perfectly. They didnt get the whole "students at school and uni will be using computers instead of pen and paper" thing right though (probobly because portable computers still arent affordable enough to give to students to use)

Virtual worlds (including the idea of eyeglass-type HUDs) never really took off because science hasnt yet overcome the motion sicness & headache problems that VR machines cause.

Laser printers never became a fixture in the home when the Ink Jet printer became the affordable option (dot-matrix printers seem to have gone the way of the dodo so they got that bit right)

The prediction of hypertext encyclopedias is dead on (look at Wikipedia as well as the cd-rom encyclopedias from companies like britannica and world book)

Seems like the area where they made the most wrong guesses is in the area of the "digital home" where everything is connected and talking to each other and where your TV set can flash an icon in the corner to let you know that important email you were waiting for has just arrived or where your fridge can tell the supermarket computer that you are out of milk and to put it on the shopping list.

mod 0P (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14622580)

Delicious (1)

grcumb (781340) | more than 8 years ago | (#14622598)

"Open source advocates have blasted the offer because it lacks the knowledge required to interoperate with Windows behind its IP licensing, thus making it unusable."

I'm sure the submitter meant to write 'locks'. But this version was worth a chuckle.

Be Warned Atari Magazines link is NSFW (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14622983)

the optical disk looks like a toilet wall graffiti penis
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