FlyingBishop writes "With the recent onslaught of cheaper and cheaper netbooks, laptops with long battery life are becoming more and more prevalent. However, netbooks still don't have quite the durability to take on a long hiking trip where one's only need is a notetaking mechanism, and possibly a few programming environments should you need to do some coding in the wilderness. Unfortunately, the supposedly more rugged machines, being larger, naturally come with larger CPUs, which means their battery life is laughable by comparison. Making things worse, they aren't all that rugged.
So, I'm looking to embark on a journey to create a truly rugged machine: more battery than CPU, a full-sized keyboard, and a nice, shock-resistant chassis. Well, I'll focus on the first two to start with. The BeagleBoard seems like a natural place to start for this project, with a generic keyboard as the input. After that, the water gets a little more muddy. Screen size doesn't need to be huge, just enough to comfortably view a paragraph or two. It doesn't even need to be color — though finding a black and white display to interface with the BeagleBoard seems like a difficult task. There are plenty of smaller USB monitors available, but they're somewhat light on power usage specs.
So, I'm building a portable computer that hopefully will run at the bare minimum Vi/Emacs/Nano on top of Linux. Wireless would be nice, but at its core I'm looking to build the anti-netbook. Typewriter and number cruncher. Any suggestions on what sort of hardware to use?" top
FlyingBishop writes "I was recently in Latin America, and came across a number of cyber cafes with less than ideal patching. On the one hand, it puts me a little bit at ease — at least I know the management isn't intelligent enough to snoop my passwords. On the other hand, I feel something of a civic duty to bring them up to scratch. If you decide to take the plunge and insist that they patch, what do you want to have on hand? Obviously, if the computer is in the hands of the sort of people that leave things unupgraded for that long, you won't be able to truly 'harden' it — but what's the absolute minimum set of packages you want to install to get the box up to a reasonable level of security? Do you just hand them an SP3 install disc and be done with it, or is there anything else you could put on that disc? SP3 is only 340 mb, that leaves 360 mb for a whole host of programs that could help keep the cafe from turning into a botnet. What would you put there?" top
Google's new policy relaxes that requirement somewhat, requiring only that the advertisement be "factual."
I can't say I'd be horribly disappointed if anti-abortion groups were left off the search results on Google. Still : do we really want Google to have this kind of control over what we read?" Link to Original Source top
FlyingBishop writes "A site called Good old Games is slated to begin releasing a variety of older games, completely free of DRM and tested for XP and Vista compatibility. I guess wine testing would be too much to ask, but then, complete lack of DRM more than makes up for it. Shack News has an article primarily grilling GoG over their lack of DRM.
EA and LucasArts (and I'm certain this will surprise many of you) have yet to allow any of their games to be offered." Link to Original Source top
FlyingBishop writes "In a strange twist, parts of US interrogation methods used appear to have originated with a paper, Communist Attempts to Elicit False Confessions From the Air Force Prisoners of War . Written during the Korean war, the paper was generally considered an example of why China should not be emulated. Apparently the paper was stripped down to a simple list of interrogation methods, then included in US training.
FlyingBishop writes "Spanish music conglomerate Promusicae (judging from my limited Spanish skills combined with Google translator the RIAA's Spanish cousin) is suing Pablo Soto for 13 million euros for distributing (and selling) the program Manolito P2P. The arguments appear to be the same as those constantly hashed out on this side of the pond for several years: Soto cites the numerous legitimate uses of his software, including the distribution of 'copyleft' material. Promusicae accuses him of deliberately promoting and profiting from piracy.
Despite his claimed support of free (as in speech and beer) media, it's a little difficult to muster sympathy for a man who charges $15 for a special 'premium' version of his software. Information wants to be free. Unless it happens to be my information, of course." Link to Original Source