Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!



Greek Government Abruptly Shuts Down State Broadcaster

another random user Re:As a Greek (230 comments)

Apparently it's not calculated as a % of whatever the monthly bill is, it's a fixed amount of 4.30 euros (approx US$ 5.75).

about 10 months ago

I typically receive X pieces of misdelivered (postal) mail ...

another random user Re:What is the point of this? (217 comments)

The polls are obviously crucial market research being conducted by Dice.com in order to formulate their next marketing campaign.

Guess they should read their own disclaimers at the bottom of the survey, like

This whole thing is wildly inaccurate. Rounding errors, ballot stuffers, dynamic IPs, firewalls. If you're using these numbers to do anything important, you're insane.

about a year ago

Teaching robots to lie - what could possible go wrong...

another random user Typo in title (2 comments)

should of been 'Teaching robots to lie - what could possibly go wrong...'

about a year ago

Microsoft TouchDevelop Now Runs in a Browser

another random user URL? (2 comments)

Maybe it would help to have the actual URL as the original source link and not a link back to /.


about a year and a half ago

Nokia Keeps Quietly Mapping The World

another random user Re:Despite what you think... (197 comments)

Look at what was Acorn Computers - they were doing badly with their actual computer sales which was the core of their business and ended up disappearing, but one of their subsidiaries (Arm holdings) is now doing very well by licensing out their designs.

Perhaps the same could happen with Nokia. Moving their focus away from manufacturing complete systems and allowing departments to focus on licencing of elements that can be used by other manufacturers could turn them into a very profitable organisation. Maybe the company won't continue in it's current form, but that's not to say it can't continue on in a different form.

about a year and a half ago

Hiring Smokers Banned In South Florida City

another random user Have you seen the tobacco packaging in Australia? (1199 comments)

Tobacco products complying with the world’s first plain-packaging laws started arriving in Australia’s stores around Oct. 1.

New government standards set out the images and health warnings that must cover 75 percent of the front of cigarette packs. Among them: a gangrenous foot, a tongue cancer, a toilet stained with bloody urine, and a skeletal man named Bryan who is dying of lung cancer. Further warnings must appear on the sides and cover 90 percent of the back.

The High Court of Australia in August dismissed a claim by British American Tobacco (BTI), Philip Morris (MO), Imperial Tobacco, and Japan Tobacco International that the law illegally seizes their intellectual property by banning the display of trademarks. Appeals have also been lodged by Honduras, Ukraine, and the Dominican Republic at the World Trade Organization, claiming the law restricts the tobacco trade.

Cigarette makers are right to fear the regulations, says David Hammond, an expert in tobacco rules at the University of Waterloo in Canada: “Once tobacco control measures are established in one country, they spread.”

about a year and a half ago

Dan Lyons: Apple's has become a company that copies others and plays it safe.

another random user Typo in title (1 comments)

Need to remove the 's after Apple in the title.

Spotted just as I hit submit, and there's no edit option...

about a year and a half ago

Valve Refuses to Stock Dating and Sex SIM Called Seduce Me

another random user Wrong service (2 comments)

has been banned from Valve's Greenlight service due to its alleged explicit content.

There's the problem, used the wrong service. It should of been done as Redlight not Greenlight.

about a year and a half ago

Apache Patch To Override IE 10's Do Not Track Setting

another random user Two wrongs do not make a right (375 comments)

Ignoring the issue around if IE10 should set the DNT flag by default or not, this patch only makes the situation worse.

With this patch, even if the user has explicitly chosen to set the DNT flag, the server will ignore it. They claim this patch has to be done because IE 10 ignores part of the spec:

"Key to that notion of expression is that it must reflect the user's preference, not the preference of some institutional or network-imposed mechanism outside the user's control."

This patch however also ignores this same element of the spec, in that no matter what the user may or may not of done, there will be a "mechanism outside the user's control" (the Apache server) which decides on what they want the preference to be.

I do agree that the DNT setting should be a user choice, perhaps given when the user first installs the browser as well as having the option to change it at any time, but to me this is not the right response to having a default set - although I'm sure if the default setting was that tracking was allowed, the add people would for some reason not be complaining about having a default...

about a year and a half ago

Ask Slashdot: Hackable Portable Music Player For Helicopters?

another random user Re:just buy a tablet? (158 comments)

Really? Nobody mentioned music? Let me check in the summary:

We have a problem with our onboard music players


So we have a new plan: get portable music players like iPods, and plug those into the aux input in the intercom system. We need something that has nine hours of battery life, can hold at least three hours of music, and has remote control options for start, stop, volume, and selecting tracks and playlists, and a display that is visible in bright and sunny as well as dark conditions. The remote control option is the toughest part to find. The pilots need to be able to control the music without taking their hands off the flight controls for safety reasons.

Maybe I'm mistaken, but I'm pretty sure that music was indeed mentioned.

about a year and a half ago

Drinking Too Much? Blame Your Glass

another random user Using the wrong units (115 comments)

From the article (i know, what am I doing reading that...)

"They assigned each group to drink either about 177 milliliters or about 354 milliliters of lager or soft drink from straight or curved glasses."

No they didn't! It's a British report and beer sure as hell is not measured in ml!

Still, the actual measurements used (6 fl oz and 12 fl oz) still seem to be an odd choice to me. Have to wonder why they didn't use 10 fl oz (a half) and 20 fl oz (a pint) to more accurately represent the normal quantities of beer drinking.


about a year and a half ago

Experts Develop 3rd-Party Patch For New Java Zero-Day

another random user Re:Quarterly security patch? (154 comments)

And what happens when it's time to release the next version but no new vulnerabilities have been found?

Don't worry about it, that's never going to happen.

about a year and a half ago

HTC Defeats Apple In Slide-To-Unlock Patent Dispute

another random user Same patent used in Galaxy Nexus ban (149 comments)

This judgement covers one of the patents that has also been used by Apple in blocking the Galaxy Nexus from sale in the US - http://www.bbc.com/news/technology-18705285

As this mentions the 'slide-to-unlock' function as obvious based on existing functions in earlier handests - could this be used in evidence as part of the arguments around the Nexus ban?

about 2 years ago

HTC defeats Apple in swipe-to-unlock patent dispute

another random user Connections to other cases? (1 comments)

This judgement covers one of the patents that has also been used by Apple in blocking the Galaxy Nexus from sale in the US - http://www.bbc.com/news/technology-18705285

As this mentions the 'slide-to-unlock' function as obvious based on existing functions in earlier handests - could this be used in evidence as part of the arguments around the Nexus ban?

about 2 years ago



ATMs robbed with infected USB sticks

another random user another random user writes  |  about 4 months ago

another random user (2645241) writes "Researchers have revealed how cyber-thieves sliced into cash machines in order to infect them with malware earlier this year. The criminals cut the holes in order to plug in USB drives that installed their code onto the ATMs. Details of the attacks on an unnamed European bank's cash dispensers were presented at the hacker-themed Chaos Computing Congress in Hamburg, Germany.

The thefts came to light in July after the lender involved noticed several its ATMs were being emptied despite their use of safes to protect the cash inside. After surveillance was increased, the bank discovered the criminals were vandalising the machines to use the infected USB sticks. The malware was installed onto the ATMs via USB sticks, and once the malware had been transferred they patched the holes up. This allowed the same machines to be targeted several times without the hack being discovered."

Link to Original Source

Owners report that new Dell laptops 'have cat urine smell'

another random user another random user writes  |  about 6 months ago

another random user (2645241) writes "A number of Dell users have complained that their Latitude 6430u Ultrabooks "smell of cat urine".

Dell engineers have ruled out biological contamination, and said the smell was not a health hazard. The problem lay in the manufacturing process, which has now been changed, the company said.

"A few weeks ago I got a new Lattitude 6430u for work," one user called Three West complained on Dell's hardware support forum. "The machine is great, but it smells as if it was assembled near a tomcat's litter box. It is truly awful!"

Another customer, Hoteca, said: "I thought for sure one of my cats sprayed it, but there was something faulty with it so I had it replaced. The next one had the same exact issue. It's embarrassing taking it to clients because it smells so bad.""

Link to Original Source

Facebook lets beheading clips return to social network

another random user another random user writes  |  about 6 months ago

another random user (2645241) writes "Facebook is allowing videos showing people being decapitated to be posted and shared on its site once again.

The social network had placed a temporary ban on the material in May following complaints that the clips could cause long-term psychological damage.

The US firm now believes its users should be free to watch and condemn, but not celebrate, such videos. One suicide prevention charity criticised the move.

"It only takes seconds of exposure to such graphic material to leave a permanent trace — particularly in a young person's mind," said Dr Arthur Cassidy, a former psychologist who runs a branch of the Yellow Ribbon Program in Northern Ireland. "The more graphic and colourful the material is, the more psychologically destructive it becomes."

Decapitation videos are available elsewhere on the net — including on Google's YouTube — but critics have raised concern that Facebook's news feeds and other sharing functions mean it is particularly adept at spreading such material."

Link to Original Source

Suspected creator of Blackhole and Cool exploit kits has been arrested

another random user another random user writes  |  about 6 months ago

another random user (2645241) writes "Russian police have reportedly arrested a man on suspicion of masterminding two infamous hacking tools. He is suspected of being the man behind the alias Paunch — the nickname used by the creator of the Blackhole and Cool exploit kits, sold to cybercriminals to infect web users with malware.

The Russian authorities have not confirmed the details. But security firms said they had already detected a decline in the programs' use.

A spokesman for the law enforcement agency Europol told the BBC:

Europol and the European Cybercrime Centre has been informed that a high-level suspected cyber criminal has been arrested. We can only refer you to the Russian authorities, they are the ones who should speak about this topic.


Link to Original Source

Snowden shortlisted for Europe's top human rights award.

another random user another random user writes  |  about 7 months ago

another random user (2645241) writes "Edward Snowden, the fugitive American former intelligence worker, has made the shortlist of three for the Sakharov prize, Europe's top human rights award.

Mr Snowden was nominated by Green politicians in the European Parliament for leaking details of US surveillance. Nominees also include Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani teenager shot in the head for demanding education for girls.

Former recipients of the prize, awarded by the European Parliament, include Nelson Mandela and Aung San Suu Kyi.

Mr Snowden's nomination recognised that his disclosure of US surveillance activities was an "enormous service" to human rights and European citizens, the parliament's Green group said."

Link to Original Source

Online law banning discussion of current affairs comes into force in Vietnam

another random user another random user writes  |  about 8 months ago

another random user (2645241) writes "A controversial law banning Vietnamese online users from discussing current affairs has come into effect.

The decree, known as Decree 72, says blogs and social websites should not be used to share news articles, but only personal information. The law also requires foreign internet companies to keep their local servers inside Vietnam.

The new law specifies that social networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook should only be used "to provide and exchange personal information".

It also prohibits the online publication of material that "opposes" the Vietnamese government or "harms national security".

Last month the US embassy in Hanoi said it was "deeply concerned by the decree's provisions", arguing that "fundamental freedoms apply online just as they do offline"."

Link to Original Source

Computer scientists develop 'mathematical jigsaw puzzles' to encrypt software

another random user another random user writes  |  about 9 months ago

another random user (2645241) writes "The claim here is that the encrypted software can be executed, but not reverse-engineered. To quote from the article:

UCLA computer science professor Amit Sahai and a team of researchers have designed a system to encrypt software so that it only allows someone to use a program as intended while preventing any deciphering of the code behind it.

According to Sahai, previously developed techniques for obfuscation presented only a "speed bump," forcing an attacker to spend some effort, perhaps a few days, trying to reverse-engineer the software. The new system, he said, puts up an "iron wall," making it impossible for an adversary to reverse-engineer the software without solving mathematical problems that take hundreds of years to work out on today's computers — a game-change in the field of cryptography.


Link to Original Source

HBO Asks Google to Take Down "Infringing" VLC Media Player

another random user another random user writes  |  about 9 months ago

another random user (2645241) writes "It’s no secret that copyright holders are trying to take down as much pirated content as they can, but their targeting of open source software is something new. In an attempt to remove pirated copies of Game of Thrones from the Internet, HBO sent a DMCA takedown to Google, listing a copy of the popular media player VLC as a copyright infringement. An honest mistake, perhaps, but a worrying one.

Usually these notices ask Google to get rid of links to pirate sites, but for some reason the cable network also wants Google to

The same DMCA notice also lists various other links that don’t appear to link to HBO content, including a lot of porn related material, Ben Harper’s album Give Till It’s Gone, Naruto, free Java applets and Prince of Persia 5."

Link to Original Source

Microsoft and Blackberry cut Surface and Z10 prices

another random user another random user writes  |  about 9 months ago

another random user (2645241) writes "Microsoft and Blackberry have both cut prices on their products in a bid to boost sales.

Microsoft dropped the price of the 32GB Surface RT to £279 from £400 in the UK, with the 64GB model's price down by the same amount to £359 (In the US, the cheapest Surface tablet went down to $349 from $499)

And in the US, Blackberry has cut the price of the Z10 phone to as low as $49 with a contract — down from $199 four months ago.

"It's a big deal for both companies," Tony Cripps, a telecoms analyst at Ovum, told the BBC. "Competing with the Apples and Samsungs of this world is tough, and it's a difficult climate to put out high-end products when the market is so dominated by a couple of players."

Recent figures from analysts IDC show that 49.2 million tablets shipped in January, February and March — and about 900,000 of those were Surfaces."

Link to Original Source

Microsoft U-turn on Xbox One

another random user another random user writes  |  about 10 months ago

another random user (2645241) writes "Microsoft has made a dramatic U-turn over its decision to impose restrictions on pre-owned titles on its new Xbox One console.

The company had said it would restrict the free trade of pre-owned games, and that an internet connection was required to play all titles.

But following gamers' anger, Microsoft said it would drop the policies. Microsoft interactive president Don Mattrick said the company had "heard loud and clear" from its customers.

The statement, which was for some time inaccessible due to heavy traffic, went on to backtrack fully on the controversial aspects of their DRM — digital rights management — plans:

"An internet connection will not be required to play offline Xbox One games — after a one-time system set-up with a new Xbox One, you can play any disc based game without ever connecting online again. There is no 24-hour connection requirement and you can take your Xbox One anywhere you want and play your games, just like on Xbox 360.

"Trade-in, lend, resell, gift, and rent disc based games just like you do today — there will be no limitations to using and sharing games, it will work just as it does today on Xbox 360.""

Link to Original Source

Apple files patent for digital wallet and virtual currency

another random user another random user writes  |  about 10 months ago

another random user (2645241) writes "Apple has applied for a patent on a combined virtual currency and digital wallet technology that would allow you to store money in the cloud, make payments with your iPhone, and maybe communicate with point-of-sale terminals via NFC.

The patent application, published today by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Organization, details how iPhone users could walk into a store, pay for goods with their phone, and walk out with their merchandise.

Though Apple is late to the virtual wallet game, that doesn't seem to stop them trying to patent the process. There does not appear to be anything in the patent application which describes something that can't already be done."

Link to Original Source

Saudi Arabia blocks Viber messaging service

another random user another random user writes  |  about 10 months ago

another random user (2645241) writes "The head of the messaging application Viber has said people in Saudi Arabia have had basic freedoms taken away, after his service was blocked there.

Talmon Marco told the BBC he did not know the reason for the move, but that Viber would be restored soon.

In March Saudi authorities warned Viber and other encrypted messaging services that they would be blocked unless they provided a means to to be monitored. Mr Marco said he had refused to provide data requested by Saudi officials.

The fact that Viber's free phone and text messaging service is no longer working in the country is not entirely unexpected. The Saudi telecoms regulator had warned the firm — along with Skype and Whatsapp — that they would be blocked if they did not agree to be monitored."

Link to Original Source

Apple loses US trade panel ruling in Samsung dispute

another random user another random user writes  |  about 10 months ago

another random user (2645241) writes "Apple has lost a ruling by a US trade panel in a patent dispute with its rival Samsung.

The International Trade Commission (ITC) ruled that Apple infringed on a Samsung patent, which could mean some older models of the iPad and iPhone are banned from sale in the US.

The patent relates to 3G wireless technology and the ability to transmit multiple services correctly and at the same time. Apple said it plans to appeal.

The ruling could also be reversed by a US presidential order within 60 days.

The ruling overturned an earlier decision by ITC Judge James Gildea, who said in September that Apple did not violate the patents at issue in the case, which was filed nearly three years ago.

"We believe the ITC's final determination has confirmed Apple's history of free-riding on Samsung's technological innovations," a Samsung statement said."

Link to Original Source

Facebook to introduce video ads

another random user another random user writes  |  about a year ago

another random user (2645241) writes "Facebook is reportedly introducing video advertisements to News Feeds this summer.

Reports in the Financial Times (registration required) say that the clips will last for around 15 seconds, and the first one users see each day will play automatically.

The first video will apparently play without audio, and restart if the account holder chooses to activate sound. Facebook is yet to officially confirm the move, but the report claims that the social network will gradually introduce video advertising to minimise user disruption.

The company's most lucrative marketing partners, including American Express, Coca Cola, Ford, Diageo and Nestle, are expected to be the first brands to make use of the feature. Facebook is said to have implemented the strategy in a bid to take a slice out of TV ad revenue by undercutting the sector."

Link to Original Source

'Urgent need' to remove space debris

another random user another random user writes  |  about a year ago

another random user (2645241) writes "There is now so much debris in orbit that the space environment is close to a cascade of collisions that would make space extremely hazardous, a major international meeting has concluded.

Its summary position stated there was an "urgent need" to start pulling redundant objects out of the sky.

Scientists estimate there are nearly 30,000 items circling the Earth larger than 10cm in size. Some are whole satellites and rocket bodies, but many are just fragments.

These have resulted from explosions in fuel tanks and batteries, and from the high-velocity impacts between objects."

Link to Original Source

Super-powered battery breakthrough claimed by US team

another random user another random user writes  |  1 year,2 days

another random user (2645241) writes "A new type of battery has been developed which its creators say could revolutionise the way we power consumer electronics and vehicles.

The University of Illinois team says its use of 3D-electrodes allows it to build "microbatteries" that are many times smaller than commercially available options, or the same size and many times more powerful.

It adds they can be recharged 1,000 times faster than competing tech.

The researchers said their innovation should help address the issue that while smartphones and other gadgets have benefited from miniaturised electronics, battery advances have failed to pace."

Link to Original Source

Film studios send takedown notices about takedown notices

another random user another random user writes  |  1 year,15 days

another random user (2645241) writes "Two film studios have asked Google to take down links to messages sent by them requesting the removal of links connected to film piracy.

Google receives 20 million "takedown" requests, officially known as DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act) notices, a month. They are all published online.

Recent submissions by Fox and Universal Studios include requests for the removal of previous takedown notices."

Link to Original Source

TED 2013: SpaceTop 3D see-through desktop

another random user another random user writes  |  about a year ago

another random user (2645241) writes "TED fellow Jinha Lee has been working on the SpaceTop 3D desktop in collaboration with Microsoft.

Allowing people to interact with machines in the same way they do with solid objects could make computing much more intuitive, he told the BBC. He can see the system coming into general use within a decade.

The system consists of a transparent LED display with built-in cameras, which track the user's gestures and eye movements. The design was inspired by what he sees as a human need to interact with things.

"Spatial memory, where the body intuitively remembers where things are, is a very human skill," he said. Translating this to the digital world will enable people to use computers more easily as well as complete more complex tasks."

Link to Original Source

Ticketmaster dumps 'hated' Captcha verification system

another random user another random user writes  |  about a year ago

another random user (2645241) writes "The world's largest online ticket retailer is to stop requiring users to enter hard-to-read words in order to prove they are human.

Captcha — which asks users to type in words to prove they are not robots trying to cheat the system — is used on many sites. But Ticketmaster has moved to ditch it in favour of a simpler system.

Ticketmaster is now using software created by New York start-up Solve Media, a similar service that asks for well-known phrases, or simple multiple choice questions."

Link to Original Source


another random user has no journal entries.

Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Sign up for Slashdot Newsletters
Create a Slashdot Account