Ask Slashdot: Are Any Certifications Worth Going For?
If you are working in a place that fixes computers and is an A+ shop, like using in their marketing, then they need to have 50%+ A+ certified techs. If the person hiring you only has an A+, then they might consider you in their club.
It's still just one more letter code that can be in an HR resume keyword search, and it's dead simple. It uses adaptive testing; I scheduled the first 90 minute test, and by answering every IRQ question and other bits of impractical knowledge, was done in about 15 minutes. The test administrator asked if I wanted to take the second of the two - another 15 minutes once the machine figures it can throw the hardest questions at you and get them answered. Computer repairman are going the way of stagecoach repairmen though, although it's one thing that can't be off-shored...
That being said, any single Microsoft IT test is cheaper, and just having one lets you say "Microsoft Certified Professional". If there is a closet of Microsoft stuff in a server room that would make this cert appealing to a company, I would dread the daily grind working there.
French Publishers Prepare Lawsuit Against Adblock Plus
The part of this article that has not been mentioned yet is that the developer of Adblock Plus (forked from the original Adblock) has decided to take money in exchange for allowing "non-intrusive" advertising through its lists, pretty much against the interests of it's users who don't want any ads. This puts them directly in the line of fire when media publishers get irate enough to sue, as advertisers see them as a blackmailer. You can see the whitelist of allowed sites here: https://easylist-downloads.adb... - along with Google and it's Doubleclick network, other notables and other publishers and trackers not easily recognized have paid up. Adblock Plus got the install base and trust, then they change the arrangement.
Google Confirms That It's Designing Kid-Friendly Versions of Its Services
COPPA - Children's Online Privacy Protection Act is the law they are attempting to skirt through directed effort, which defines a child for the sake of all its protection as an individual under 13.
(1) IN GENERAL.â"It is unlawful for an operator of a website or online service directed to children, or any operator that has actual knowledge that it is collecting personal information from a child, to collect personal information from a child in a manner that violates the regulations prescribed under subsection (b). ... and it continues.
I wonder how they expect to monetize or indoctrinate this audience. As long as they don't violate the terms of the privacy law (which got iOS contact-stealing app company Path fined $800,000, in part for collecting on children) they can run a kid's site. This means that as long as they aren't wantonly scarfing details, they can still pitch sugar cereals.
NASA Remasters 20-Year-Old Galileo Photographs of Jupiter's Moon, Europa
The NASA article is a government work and not subject to copyright, so I can save you from doing any clicking whatsoever:
The puzzling, fascinating surface of Jupiter's icy moon Europa looms large in this newly-reprocessed color view, made from images taken by NASA's Galileo spacecraft in the late 1990s. This is the color view of Europa from Galileo that shows the largest portion of the moon's surface at the highest resolution.
The view was previously released as a mosaic with lower resolution and strongly enhanced color (see PIA02590). To create this new version, the images were assembled into a realistic color view of the surface that approximates how Europa would appear to the human eye.
The scene shows the stunning diversity of Europa's surface geology. Long, linear cracks and ridges crisscross the surface, interrupted by regions of disrupted terrain where the surface ice crust has been broken up and re-frozen into new patterns.
Color variations across the surface are associated with differences in geologic feature type and location. For example, areas that appear blue or white contain relatively pure water ice, while reddish and brownish areas include non-ice components in higher concentrations. The polar regions, visible at the left and right of this view, are noticeably bluer than the more equatorial latitudes, which look more white. This color variation is thought to be due to differences in ice grain size in the two locations.
Images taken through near-infrared, green and violet filters have been combined to produce this view. The images have been corrected for light scattered outside of the image, to provide a color correction that is calibrated by wavelength. Gaps in the images have been filled with simulated color based on the color of nearby surface areas with similar terrain types.
This global color view consists of images acquired by the Galileo Solid-State Imaging (SSI) experiment on the spacecraft's first and fourteenth orbits through the Jupiter system, in 1995 and 1998, respectively. Image scale is 2 miles (1.6 kilometers) per pixel. North on Europa is at right.
The Galileo mission was managed by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, for the agency's Science Mission Directorate in Washington. JPL is a division of the California Institute of Technology, Pasadena.
Additional information about Galileo and its discoveries is available on the Galileo mission home page at http://solarsystem.nasa.gov/galileo/. More information about Europa is available at http://solarsystem.nasa.gov/europa.
Researcher Finds Tor Exit Node Adding Malware To Downloads
There have been several reports of Bitcoin users that use online wallets and exchanges, even over https, getting MITM attacked when using Tor. They visit the wallet site, get bad certificates but continue anyway, and poof, their Bitcoins in the service are gone and their passwords are known by the attacker. With recent SSL vulnerabilities or clever redirection, the cert errors could be avoided also. For other sites, users can be piped through a "universal phisher" to steal any credentials.
Clearly Tor users are under attack by exit nodes, many of them running automated tools against many web destinations.
Ubuntu 14.10 Released With Ambitious Name, But Small Changes
If you want a significantly modernized UI that hasn't been designed for dummies, have a look at KDE Plasma 5. Kubuntu was simultaneously released in 14.10 flavor, and there are tech preview ISOs available now with the new desktop. It has a new wallpaper, also.
Data From Windows 10 Feedback Tool Exposes Problem Areas
It works as designed, however it works against the interest of the user. A perfect example is the unmovable and unremovable search button next to the start button that opens Bing search. Just like on Windows phones with a physical search button made useless because it cannot be configured to do anything but open Bing, this is just another operating system iteration that does what Microsoft wants, users be damned.
The best reply and what every user actually wants: "be Windows 7 after I disable all the bloat and UI garbage, libraries, and homegroup cruft you put on that OS".
CenturyLink: Comcast Is Trying To Prevent Competition In Its Territories
Centurylink (which in this territory acquired Qwest, which was the local baby bell USWest after the AT&T breakup) does their own slimy anti-competitive tricks with their monopoly.
While DSL providers were required to allow third-party ISPs as a choice to customers (where the copper is Centurylink but the ISP is your choice), they limited the third party ISPs to 7mbps connections while rolling out their own ISP service at 30mbps. Whereas the ISPs provide professional and business class service, Centurylink's service is of course crummy PPPoE dialup with constant dropping and changing IP address, making it pretty much useless for anything except looking at web pages and impossible to use with most off the shelf network hardware.
They are hardly the ones to be speaking about preventing competition.
Plasma 5 Release Candidate Announced
Anyone else notice its starting to look more like XKCD?
Windows 9 To Win Over Windows 7 Users, Disables Start Screen For Desktop
Windows 8 has already made itself incompatible with most non-x64 processors anyway. It requires SSE2, PAE, and NX bit, which are features that CPUs, say a Pentium 4 Extreme Edition 3.46GHz or a Pentium 4 HT 571 3.8GHz, do not offer. Doesn't matter that you have 8GB of RAM and an SSD in them. Believe me, these CPUs are fine for just about any office task.
Windows 8 runs on crap tablet hardware but won't run on CPUs that can run MFLOPS around them due to a few CPU features.
Kingston and PNY Caught Bait-and-Switching Cheaper Components After Good Reviews
This has been happening for many years in computer monitors and televisions also. There will be an initial version sold for a few months that gets the reviews, and then the specs are changed - completely different LCD panels made by different manufacturers are substituted silently, often with different technology. Anecdotally early versions of an Acer monitor having a MPVA panel, and then the exact same model then shipping with TN panels that pale in performance compared to the original. With monitors, you are buying an AO Optronics panel in a box labeled Samsung, so when the same model gets you something inferior to both specifications and original reviews, it borders on fraud.
One Developer's Experience With Real Life Bitrot Under HFS+
The problem is, neither ZFS or Btrfs would have stopped an arbitrary bit inside an arbitrary file from becoming corrupt....
I think you should have a look at this 10 year old blog post: https://blogs.oracle.com/elowe...
ZFS can use single and double-parity (like RAID5 with two parity drives, but no failure if power is pulled during writing). In addition, it has bit scrubbing where all data is verified regularly.
GoDaddy Files For $100 Million IPO
And these scumbags even register and hold for ransom domain names put into their domain search tool. That's right - search to see if a domain is available using the Godaddy site, and it will be registered by Godady themselves or "partners", and sold off to the highest bidder, or suddenly have a $500 asking price. http://www.billhartzer.com/pag...
Whom Must You Trust?
The linked article, which I did read, seems to have no thesis. It meanders from "C compilers can be subverted" to "see if people leave their purses out to judge if a neighborhood is safe". It is as if a high schooler had to write a paper on trust, and cut a paragraph out of each of the top 20 web search results.
Testing 65 Different GPUs On Linux With Open Source Drivers
The open source driver needs to be good; the latest version of the ATI proprietary driver has dropped support for relatively new cards - anything before HD 5000 series. This means that cards that include very good h.264 decoding engines such as the AMD Radeon HD 3850 256MB reviewed can no longer use the latest driver. In Ubuntu 14.04 this also means that trying the older last-supporting driver version no longer works, one would need to downgrade the x server version used in the distro.
This is one of the few cases where hardware on Linux becomes "obsolete" far sooner than it should because of lacking manufacturer's driver support (as opposed to many hardware devices like gameports, scanners, and printers that lost their Windows support in Vista but continue working on Linux). This will make me more wary not of Linux, but of the manufacturers that pull such shenanigans.
Firefox OS Powered Flame Available For Pre-order; Ships Globally
You can get an almost identically-specified Windows 8.1 Nokia Lumia 520 for $59.99, no contract. The only thing it's missing is a camera flash and a front-facing camera for video chats (Skype still works, it just points the wrong way.)
The latest developer rev of Windows Phone has word flow keyboard, which turns touch-screen typing from painfully intolerable to pretty cool.
Even Blackberry, giving it's Playbooks away to developers, couldn't get the adoption jump-started, so I don't know how an overpriced Firefox phone will succeed, although I would hope it would. Every other smartphone except for Blackberry wants to own your personal data and your life in their cloud and profit from everything sold in their store.
It's Time For the Descent Games Return
I have a Logitech Cyberman II controller still (can be seen here). It has a true six-axis knob and eight buttons - you never have to touch the keyboard. Twist the knob right to look right, twist down to look down; push forward to move forward, pull knob up to move up - revolutionary. I don't think most understand how awesome these controllers are, or how disappointing it is that game port support was completely removed by Windows 7 (and previously took a hack to add back into Vista) and that these controllers disappeared from Logitech joystick software updates before that.
Descent had several direct-to-metal ports, pre-directx or OpenGL, for video cards such as the Rendition Verite and S3 Virge. I tossed all my CDs of games unplayable without the old hardware a while ago. None of these cards won though, as the 3dfx Voodoo stomped them all for Quake.
Should Microsoft Be Required To Extend Support For Windows XP?
The main reason so much needs to be rewritten and the reason that new drivers were required on Windows Vista (making it's initial release a fustercluck) is that big media got to Microsoft.
Vista, 7, and 8 have end-to-end DRM encryption support, required for logo compliance with Blu-ray, where the data comes out of the disc encrypted, and goes to the monitor encrypted. The DRM audio comes from Microsoft encrypted, and only comes out of your Zune's headphone jack unencrypted. This fundamentally broke the audio framework, digital audio workstations, video card drivers, imaging devices, etc, because none of these drivers or applications were previously written to prevent users from using data on their own computers.
Dyn.com Ends Free Dynamic DNS
Most don't change your IP address capriciously, but some do. Some ISPs, such as Centurylink DSL (Qwest) aggressively change IP with every DHCP renew or PPPoE session, specifically to frustrate users into paying more for a static IP address to run any kind of service that expects that a response should return to the same IP address a few minutes later.
This particular scumbag company has also tried to ace out other DSL Internet providers by limiting them to 7mbps while selling their own ISP service at 20mbps+.
Used IT Equipment Can Be Worth a Fortune (Video)
sing along..."Spam Spam Spam Spam"