Beta

Slashdot: News for Nerds

×

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!

Comments

top

How Stanford Engineers Created a Fictitious Compression For HBO

hankwang Re:Meh (89 comments)

"you could run it repeatedly on a data source until you were down to a single bit."

That's why you need two distinct compression algorithms. Sometimes one will work better, sometimes the other. While repeatedly compressing, don't forget to write down in which sequence you need to apply the decompression. I believe this can compress abitrary data down to zero bits, if you are patient enough.

3 days ago
top

Unintended Consequences For Traffic Safety Feature

hankwang Re:OR (579 comments)

"Advanced driving courses teach vehicle dynamics, skid control, proper reactionary techniques to road hazards, proactive hazard evaluation, and so on; they cost $300 here, and you can go all the way to $1500 for driving/racing combined classes"

That's cheap. Here in Netherlands, a regular driving license will cost you around 30 hours(*) of instruction, plus 10 or so hours to study the traffic rules in all kinds of edge cases, and about 1500 euros for instruction, theory exam, and driving exam. It doesn't include skid control.

Traffic fatalities (per capita) are a factor 3 lower in Netherlands and Germany, compared to the US.

(*) it took me more like 75 hours of instruction and considerably more money... started at later age and generally bad body coordination/multitasking....

about a month ago
top

Microsoft Suspending "Patch Tuesday" Emails

hankwang Re:It looks like a response to anti spam laws (145 comments)

From TFA (2nd link): "Your CEO, and each officer, may be fined up to $1,000,000"

Now that's refreshing! Corporate misbehavior resulting in personal fines for the management. I could think of a few more cases where that would be a good idea.

about a month ago
top

Workaholism In America Is Hurting the Economy

hankwang Re:How much reduced sleep is tied to long commutes (710 comments)

"I know people who are losing two hours of their life a day commuting each way, "

I commute well over 2 hours, 4 days per week. I don't see it as lost time. I'm reading slashdot and other sites in the train like now (plenty of space since I travel after the peak hours). In addition, 15 km of cycling per day, which is my only exercise. Fortunately the climate over here allows cycling.

But the idea of driving a car for 2 h/day horrifies me...

about a month ago
top

Latin America Exhausts IPv4 Addresses

hankwang Re:If we're not going to switch, charge per ip (197 comments)

"just start charging per ip $1 per ip per year should be sufficient"

And who should benefit from the $4B/yr revenue? The American government because ICANN is in the US?

about a month and a half ago
top

The Major Theoretical Blunders That Held Back Progress In Modern Astronomy

hankwang Re:Earth is flat? (129 comments)

OK, replace "scientific community" by "anyone literate and educated".

There are well known midieval symbols for a sperical earth. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/...

The notion of a spherical earth dates from around 400 B.C.

about 2 months ago
top

Questionable Patents From MakerBot

hankwang Re:Oblig Prior Art Question (56 comments)

When a patent is filed, I believe the USPTO keeps it confidential for a long time (a year?) until it is well along in process, to avoid revealing its secrets long before the patent is decided.

In the standard procedure, the application is kept secret for 18 months; then the application is published; the USPTO will then wait another year or so (depending on the back log it could be much more) before deciding whether or not to grant the patent. In this time slot between publication and decision, competitors could point out relevant prior art to USPTO, which would affect the decision.

In the US system, one can also file a provisional patent application and wait 12 months before filing the final application, which will essentially stretch the confidential period from 18 to 30 months. This was the case here. The final application can differ from the provisional application (errors corrected, more examples provided, reworded claims, etc.). In case of relevant prior art that was published between the provisional and final application, the provisional application will count.

about 2 months ago
top

Who controls the HVAC at work?

hankwang Re:Has this ever happened to you? (216 comments)

"a big portion of what you experience with regards to a temperatures bearability is based on humidity. In a very dry climate, 40C won't feel bad. In a very humid climate, you can start sweating at 16C."

In addition to that, the temperature is only sampled at one point. There can be quite a difference between temperature of supply and exhaust. I think a normal office should be ventilated at 100 m3/h

A human, with computer and lighting (250 W) can generate 8 C temperature increase. If you're unlucky with the airflow patterns, you could have people sitting in zones on both ends of that range. Moreover, between summer and winter, the walls may have different temperatures, which will affect both the local air temperatures and the energy balance of thermal radiation between warm bodies and walls.

about 2 months ago
top

Gaining On the US: Most Europeans To Be Overweight By 2030

hankwang Re:BMI is a lie! (329 comments)

Bah, 99.9% of the people who complain that their BMI is high because of muscles don't have that much muscles. This is Olaf Tufte, former olympic champion

Well, that's an example of a guy who, as you say, are almost pure muscle. Go and Google for "strongest man competition". Most of those guys have quite a bit more fat, but I doubt that their overal body fat percentage is that high.

about 3 months ago
top

USPTO Approves Amazon Patent For Taking Pictures

hankwang Re: Our patent system is totally broken (152 comments)

"he's hard pressed for time. The patent office is over worked, understaffed, and runs on quotas"

I'm actually amazed about what these examiners can achieve. Depending on what you assume for the hourly rate of an examiner, including all organizational overhead, they have 4 to 8 hours to read and understand the application, search prior art, and write their response.

I sometimes have to proofread draft patent applications of my own inventions, and it takes me typically 4 hours to review those (check that what the attorney wrote is a correct description of what I think the invention is). They turn my 2-page description of an idea into 25 pages of dense legalese, but at least I believe that I should have some advantage in understanding the idea, compared to the examiner.

about 3 months ago
top

Really, Why Are Smartphones Still Tied To Contracts?

hankwang Re: Simple: So people will buy them. (482 comments)

You live in Europe. Where exactly? Europe includes Ukraine, part of Russia, and a few other non-EU countries. Even within the EU, it can vary.

"you have always been able to slap your SIM card into any phone you buy since 1995 or so. ... In Europe you always bought your phone from an electronics shop and SIM from a carrier."

Well, it has always been an option, but in Netherlands and various places where I've been on holiday, it's not what all consumers opt for. Plenty of people who get a new smartphone every 2 years. A phone bought together with a SIM often has a SIM lock, which means that it will only work with one carrier. Most shops here do not offer iPhones without contract.

In Netherlands, it seems that the 3G capacity is saturated. At least, data plans are expensive, especially with pay-as-you-go and MVNOs. MVNOs are only competitive as long as you stay here. Roaming rates tend to be the EU maximum, whereas the main providers often have better deals.

about 3 months ago
top

The Fall and Rise of Larry Page

hankwang Re:Amazing discovery in this article (99 comments)

i think both of Google's founders were smart enough to understand they were GEEKS and not try to run the business themselves. So they went out and got Eric Schmidt

TFA explains that Page was not very cooperative to get a mature CEO. Essentially, he had Schmidt shoved through his throat:

Page had never been behind hiring [Schmidt] -- or any CEO, for that matter. Google's investors made him do it. (...) And for a long time, Larry Page was very unhappy.

about 3 months ago
top

$42,000 Prosthetic Hand Outperformed By $50 3D Printed Hand

hankwang Re:More money does not always buy better things. (288 comments)

"The $150 Formica counter top at my rented flat and my mother's 30-year-old granite one beg to differ."

Last time I was looking into kitchen hardware, the salesman warned me that natural granite is a bit porous and tends to get stained irreversibly from, say, wine spills, and that you have to re-impregnate it regularly. Not something I want in my kitchen. On the other hand, all synthetic counter tops, including granite-look composites, are not guaranteed to handle hot pans. I ended up not buying a new kitchen...

about 3 months ago
top

First Glow-In-the-Dark Road Debuts In Netherlands

hankwang Re:Useless (187 comments)

"you can walk around outdoors without electric lights even when there's no moon."

I doubt that you can do that comfortably if there are trees blocking the little star light that's available or if it's a bad road surface combined with you not wearing rugged boots.

Apart from that, especially women don't feel comfortable going around in dark places where they perceive that there can be rapists hiding in the dark.

about 3 months ago
top

British Domain Registrar Offers 'No Transfer Fees,' Charges Transfer Fee

hankwang Re:Typical corporation bullshit (77 comments)

I believe that in the EU, consumers have a legal right to terminate a contract without additional costs, within 1 month if being informed of a change in the terms.

about 4 months ago
top

Will Cameras Replace Sideview Mirrors On Cars In 2018?

hankwang Re:Yes (496 comments)

I wonder about dynamic range, too, although the dynamic range of a dusty mirror and an additional two glass surfaces of the side window may not be that good either.

But why is parallax relevant?

about 4 months ago
top

Department of Transportation Makes Rear View Cameras Mandatory

hankwang Re:13 deaths? (518 comments)

Cars would probably be a lot safer if they were made more simply, and they didn't change the design ever 2 or 3 years. Stick with time tested designs and get all the bugs out and you'd end up with a car that was reliable and safe.

That is a strong assertion. Can you back that up? Over the years, cars have become safer both for the people inside and other road users (well, the latter probably doesn't really hold for SUV monsters), and also got much better fuel economy. A lot of that you can't achieve by debugging an existing design. Think of aerodynamics and crumple zones, which are integrated into the entire car design. Over here (Netherlands), the minimum age and frequency for mandatory technical inspections of old cars have been relaxed over the years, apparently because of the increase in durability.

about 4 months ago
top

I prefer my peppers ...

hankwang Re:SHU (285 comments)

Who the hell actually knows the SHU of the food they eat?

Very few; at most they know what is written on the label or on some website. The standard (American Spice Trade Association) way is that Scoville heat units are a measure for the concentration of capsaicin in chili peppers, in terms of dry weight. Dry weight is about 10% of the fresh weight of chilis. For chili sauce, they rarely specify whether the Scoville rating is in terms of "wet" weight of the sauce, or on a dry weight basis - leave alone what the water content is of those sauces.

And especially for super hot chilis (Bhut Jolokia and so on), the numbers reported are for one particularly hot batch. That doesn't tell much abouw how much heat an average specimen, grown under average conditions, will get you, but you can be pretty sure that it will be less than the batch that was tested with the aim of getting into the Guiness book of records.

about 4 months ago
top

I prefer my peppers ...

hankwang Re:Depends on the dish (285 comments)

Protip: When the recipe says to use gloves and eye protection, use gloves and eye protection. Even if you think you're a big shot chilihead because you just ate some of your hot peppers the day before.

My experience is that the desensitization to capsaicin from eating chilis regularly is mostly body-wide, although I give you that the pain threshold differs from place to place. I have touched freshly cut chilis (including Trinidad Moruga Scorpions, which were the world record hottest) with my fingers without issues. Peeing nowadays mostly hurts from the capsaicin dissolved in the urine, not from what's left on my fingers. :-)

But the first time I handled hot chilis, the toilet visit was a bit more painful...

about 4 months ago

Submissions

top

EU fines TV makers for 1.47 billion euro

hankwang hankwang writes  |  about a year and a half ago

hankwang (413283) writes "The European commission fined a number manufacturers for pricing fixing of cathode ray tubes in the period between 1996 and 2005. The total fine was EUR 1.47 billion (USD 1.92 billion), for Philips, LG Electronics, Samsung SDI, and three other firms. According to the European Commission: "For almost 10 years, the cartelists carried out the most harmful anti-competitive practices including price fixing, market sharing, customer allocation, capacity and output coordination and exchanges of commercial sensitive information. The cartelists also monitored the implementation, including auditing compliance with the capacity restrictions by plant visits in the case of the computer monitor tubes cartel. "

Other news sources:
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-11-07/lg-said-to-face-eu-fines-with-philips-panasonic-for-cartel.html
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/12/05/us-eu-cartel-crt-idUSBRE8B40EK20121205
http://news.cnet.com/8301-1001_3-57557212-92/philips-lg-samsung-others-hit-with-eu-antitrust-fine/"

Link to Original Source
top

One million web pages attacked by lilupophilupop S

hankwang hankwang writes  |  more than 2 years ago

hankwang (413283) writes "The Internet Storm Center reported that one million web pages have been attacked by a the Lilupophilupop SQL injection and contain a malicious javascript link. Affected sites can be found using a a Google search query. See also the technical details of the SQL injection. The attack is directed to sites running ASP or ColdFusion with an MSSQL back end. The payload of the javascript leads, via redirects and obfuscated javascript, to a fake download page for Adobe Flash and antivirus software."
top

Dutch hotels must register as ISPs

hankwang hankwang writes  |  more than 3 years ago

hankwang (413283) writes "The Dutch telecommunications authority OPTA has announced that Dutch hotels must register as internet providers (Original version in Dutch) because that is what they formally are according to Dutch laws. It is well possible that once hotels are officially internet providers, they will also have to abide the European regulations on data retention and make efforts to link email headers and other data traffic to individual hotel guests. Could this also happen in other European countries? This is probably not likely to lead to a more widespread adoption of free WiFi services in hotels."
Link to Original Source
top

Online-Banking Trojan Stole Money From Belgians

hankwang hankwang writes  |  about 4 years ago

hankwang (413283) writes "The Belgian authorities uncovered an international network of online banking fraud, which has been going on since 2007. (Story in Dutch and Google translation). The fraud targeted customers of several major banks, which used supposedly secure two-factor systems that required the customer to generate authorization codes from transaction information (random code and amount or recipient's account number) that is manually keyed into a cryptographic device (Flash demo from one of the banks, Manufacturer's website). Trojan horses that were planted onto the victim's computer would generate a fake error message and requested to re-enter authorization codes. This way, amounts up to €4,000 were transferred to foreign bank accounts.

The worrying part is that many cases were never reported to the police, with the bank preferring to refund the money to the victim rather than risking their reputation. The extent of this type of fraud is unclear."

Link to Original Source
top

Doubled yield for bio-fuel from waste

hankwang hankwang writes  |  about 4 years ago

hankwang (413283) writes "Dutch chemical company DSM announced a new process for production of ethanol from agricultural waste. Most bio-fuel ethanol now is produced from food crops such as corn and sugar cane. Ethanol produced from cellulose would use waste products such as wood chips, citrus peel, and straw. The new process is claimed to increase the yield by a factor 2 compared to existing processes, thanks to new enzymes and special yeast strains."
Link to Original Source
top

Microsoft's ethical guidelines

hankwang hankwang writes  |  more than 5 years ago

hankwang writes "Did you know that Microsoft has ethical guidelines? Think of how "Microsoft did not make any payments to foreign government officials" while lobbying for OOXML, and how "Microsoft conducts its business in compliance with laws to designed to promote fair competition" every time they suppressed competitors. In their Corporate Citizenship sction, they discuss how the customer-focused approach creates products that work well with those of competitors and open-source solutions. So all the reverse-engineering by Samba and OpenOffice.org developers wasn't really necessary. It makes one wonder how people got all those weird ideas about the ethical company Microsoft?"
top

Zero-day exploit in PDF with Adobe Reader

hankwang hankwang writes  |  more than 6 years ago

hankwang (413283) writes "Security researcher Petko Petkov, who is known for his recent discovery of a vulnerability with Quicktime in Firefox, claims to have discovered an exploit that allows arbitrary code execution when a maliciously crafted PDF document is opened in any version of Adobe Reader. Petkov did not disclose any technical details other than a video, but claims on his blog that Adobe has acknowledged the vulnerability. If this exploit goes wild, it could cause some serious problems, as PDFs are usually automatically opened from web browsers and widely used and trusted by corporate users. See also Petkov's original blog post [Coral cache]."
Link to Original Source

Journals

hankwang 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>
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...