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MARS, Inc: We Are Running Out of Chocolate

pjt33 Re: How are we covering the shortfall/defecit? (323 comments)

Canada has a strategic maple syrup reserve, so the idea that the USA could have a strategic cocoa reserve isn't completely ridiculous.

about two weeks ago
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Philae's Batteries Have Drained; Comet Lander Sleeps

pjt33 Re:Amino acid data? (337 comments)

I think it's the gas chromatograph rather than the mass spectrometer (surely chirality doesn't measurably affect the mass of a molecule?), but they're built in to the same instrument, COSAC. This abstract sounds like a chromatograph to me.

about two weeks ago
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Education Chief Should Know About PLATO and the History of Online CS Education

pjt33 Re:It wasn't just PLATO (134 comments)

Teletype? Luxury! My mother learnt to program when she was in secondary school by posting punched cards across the country to Manchester University and getting the results back a week later.

about two weeks ago
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What Happens When Nobody Proofreads an Academic Paper

pjt33 Re:MS Office Incompatibility (170 comments)

If you ever look at a document.xml extracted from a .docx file you'll be astonished at how much crap there is in there just to support revision tracking.

about two weeks ago
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U.K. Supermarkets Beta Test Full-Body 3D Scanners For Selfie Figurines

pjt33 Re:UK article, US units (165 comments)

For some things. But a lot of the units which people in the US call English are different sizes to the units with the same name in England. And the UK certainly doesn't use $ for its currency, which I think is what the GPP was talking about, although I think they may have overlooked a context switch from the UK beta tests to the US launch.

about a month ago
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Google Changes 'To Fight Piracy' By Highlighting Legal Sites

pjt33 Re:Is Google Losing It? (160 comments)

If they're highlighting Google Play then I can see a new anti-trust investigation in the near future.

about a month ago
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If Your Cloud Vendor Goes Out of Business, Are You Ready?

pjt33 Re:incremental backups (150 comments)

Depends on what the problem with the colo server is. It's not entirely unknown for police to seize an entire rack of servers from a colo. (E.g. 1, 2, and I half-remember incidents in other countries too).

about a month ago
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Ask Slashdot: Why Can't Google Block Spam In Gmail?

pjt33 Re:WTF? (265 comments)

Indeed. Now that I've trained it to treat unsolicited e-mails from Twitter as spam, I hardly see any.

about a month and a half ago
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BitHammer, the BitTorrent Banhammer

pjt33 Re:It's hard being an editor, sure. (429 comments)

I was more struck by the hostpots. I'm not entirely sure what they are, but I think it probably means that the owners of the cafes where OP does his web browsing serve their own fingers for cannibalistic patrons.

about a month and a half ago
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Killer Whales Caught On Tape Speaking Dolphin

pjt33 Re:Whales? (152 comments)

Yes. And dolphins are apparently classified as toothed whales, just to completely confuse things.

about a month and a half ago
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Europol Predicts First Online Murder By End of This Year

pjt33 Re:No, lying headline (155 comments)

I quoted the part of the article where the reporter states that the security firm made that forecast. But as often happens, the headline makes claims which don't match either the truth or the body of the article. It's far from unknown for reporters or opinion writers to get a nasty shock when they see the headline which the subeditor chose to put on their copy.

If the issue were the length of the headline, a 20% saving could be made and the accuracy improved by rewriting it to "Online attacks could lead to deaths, warns Europol".

about a month and a half ago
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Europol Predicts First Online Murder By End of This Year

pjt33 No, lying headline (155 comments)

The first link in the summary is to a news report with the headline "First online murder to happen by the end of 2014, warns Europol". When you read the story, what it actually claims is

The study, which was published last week, analysed the possible physical dangers linked to cyber criminality and found that a rise in ‘injury and possible deaths’ could be expected as computer hackers launch attacks on critical connected equipment.

The assessment particularly referred to a report by IID, a US security firm, which forecast that the world’s first murder via a ‘hacked internet-connected device’ would happen by the end of 2014.

And the reference that it mentions is right here and says

With more objects being connected to the Internet and the creation of new types of critical infrastructure, we can expect to see (more) targeted attacks on existing and emerging infrastructures, including new forms of blackmailing and extortion schemes (e.g. ransomware for smart cars or smart homes), data theft, physical injury and possible death [188], and new types of botnets.

No mention of 2014. No assertion that it will happen: just that it might.

TL;DR: Europol isn't predicting an online murder in 2014. That's just a subeditor who either didn't understand the plain English of the reporter or who chose to outright lie when writing the headline in order to sensationalise it.

about a month and a half ago
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Back To Faxes: Doctors Can't Exchange Digital Medical Records

pjt33 Re:Crying out for open source (240 comments)

No. The software isn't the hard part. The hard part is the requirements gathering for the data schemata (aka archetypes). For example, suppose you want to create an archetype for blood samples. At a minimum you need to talk to phlebologists and GPs, but you probably also need input from other specialists who might refer someone for a blood sample to see what they need from the data. Then you work out the indivisible chunks of data, run them past your domain experts, fix any bugs they spot, repeat. And even with a lot of input from experts, unless the standards for blood sampling are universal you risk creating an archetype which doesn't quite fit the way the hospitals in the neighbouring province do things.

about 2 months ago
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jQuery.com Compromised To Serve Malware

pjt33 Re:More reason for Requestpolicy (103 comments)

If you're that worried about it, why don't you run a local mirror and point your hosts file at it?

about 2 months ago
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Anonymous Peer-review Comments May Spark Legal Battle

pjt33 Re:Timing (167 comments)

His role on most of the papers was probably just to write the grant request.

about 2 months ago
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Cuba Calculates Cost of 54yr US Embargo At $1.1 Trillion

pjt33 Re:I don't get it (540 comments)

Medicine. Patents give large US pharmaceutical companies monopolies on treatments and the embargo prevents them from being sold to Cuba.

about 2 months ago
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Feds Say NSA "Bogeyman" Did Not Find Silk Road's Servers

pjt33 Re:Or so they say... (142 comments)

the situation is analogous to the poor dudes in gitmo. Everybody knows they're not terrorists, yet because they were seized illegally there's no way for the justice system to process them.

I'm puzzled by this one. Surely all the justice system needs to do is say "The U.S. Constitution binds the actions of the U.S. government even outside U.S. territory" and then admit a writ of habeas corpus?

about 3 months ago
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Scala Designer Martin Odersky On Next Steps

pjt33 Re:Would be nice to see Scala replace Java (94 comments)

I'm not quite sure whether your question is "Why allow reference comparisons?" or "Why use == for reference comparisons?" If it's the former: if you look at equals(Object o) implementations, a lot of them begin with if (this == o) return true; It can be a major performance boost in some situations.

about 3 months ago

Submissions

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Ocean currents proposed as cause of magnetic field

pjt33 pjt33 writes  |  more than 5 years ago

pjt33 (739471) writes "The Institute of Physics reports a recently published paper which proposes that ocean currents could account for Earth's magnetic field. The currently predominant theory is that the cause is molten iron flowing in the Earth's outer core. There is at present no direct evidence for either theory."
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