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Google

+ - 185 Tesla, Ford, Amazon Hint at Cloudy Future for Cars->

Submitted by
Nerval's Lobster
Nerval's Lobster writes "The automobile, once the most analog of technologies, is rapidly becoming a smartphone on wheels: Amazon announced Feb. 13 that Ford SYNC Applink-equipped vehicles will include the Amazon Cloud Player, allowing drivers to access their music libraries via voice command or dashboard controls. Ford isn’t the only automotive company seeking to integrate cloud computing into the driving experience. Tesla Motors’ Model S electric sedan boasts a 17-inch capacitive touch-screen in place of the usual dashboard buttons and dials. And who could forget Google's self-driving car? This isn't a future everybody wants—there are more than a few wannabe Steve McQueens who won’t feel complete unless they can stomp on a pedal connected to an internal-combustion engine, flick a physical dashboard knob to the radio station of their choice, and peel out their driveway in a cloud of burning rubber. But as the latest technology migrates into automobiles, it could well be the future we’re going to receive."
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Programming

+ - 250 Ask slashdot: spreadsheet with decent programming language?

Submitted by
slartibartfastatp
slartibartfastatp writes "Spreadsheets are very flexible tools for data analysis and transformations, the obvious options being MS Excel and LibreOffice. However, I found increasingly infuriating to deal with the VBA--dialect functions or (even worse) its translated versions. Is there any spreadsheet that allows usage of a decent programming language in its formulae? I found PySpread intriguing, but still very beta (judging from its latest release version 0.2.3). Perl or even javascript would be better options than =AVERAGE(). The slashdot community knows any viable alternatives ?"
Android

+ - 175 How do you store sensitive data on your mobile devices?

Submitted by infodragon
infodragon (38608) writes "I'm just now seriously diving into the mobile world and have many questions surrounding all the devices, apps and options. However, one stands out; How do I protect sensitive data? On Linux this question is easy, I use RAID 1/5/6, depending on need, with LVM in the middle and topped with LUKS. This setup is very powerful and extremely flexible. Is it possible to match the strength of LUKS on Android? iOS? What are the solutions the /. crowd has used?"

+ - 110 Dell cancelling "team members" stock options-> 1

Submitted by sl4shd0rk
sl4shd0rk (755837) writes "Apparently the privatizing of Dell is going to leave some employees who hold corporate stock options empty-handed. Dell announced in an "obtained" email that employees holding stock below $13.65/share will get a pay-out however those who obtained shares above $13.65 will get none."
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Microsoft

+ - 174 BYOD nightmare: iOS devices hobble Exchange servers when they synch ->

Submitted by
coondoggie
coondoggie writes "Microsoft and Apple recommend that businesses deny certain iPhones, iPads and iPods access to Calendar items until the companies can clear up a problem that slows Exchange servers to a crawl when the devices try to synch. The problem reveals itself to end users as an error message when they try to update items with Exchange Server 2010 that says "Cannot Get Mail" and "The connection to the server failed," according to a Microsoft support notification. The only option presented to users is to choose "OK," Microsoft says."
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Security

+ - 268 The Malware Industrial Complex-> 1

Submitted by
holy_calamity
holy_calamity writes "MIT Technology Review reports that efforts by U.S. government agencies and defense contractors to develop malware to attack enemies is driving a black market in zero-day vulnerabilities. Experts warn that could make the internet less secure for everyone, since malicious code is typically left behind on targeted systems and often shows up on untargeted ones, providing opportunities for reverse engineering."
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Intel

+ - 182 Intel Supports OpenGL ES 3.0 On Linux Before Windows->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "The Khronos Group has published the first products that are officially conformant to OpenGL ES 3.0. On that list is the Intel Ivy Bridge processors with integrated graphics, which support OpenGL ES 3.0 on open-source Linux Mesa. This is the best timing yet for Intel's open-source team to support a new OpenGL standard — the standard is just six months old where as it took years for them to support OpenGL ES 2.0. There's also no OpenGL ES 3.0 Intel Windows driver yet that's conformant. Intel also had a faster turn-around time than NVIDIA and AMD with the only other hardware on the list being Qualcomm and PowerVR hardware. OpenGL ES 3.0 works with Intel Ivy Bridge when using the Linux 3.6 kernel and the soon-to-be-out Mesa 9.1."
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Idle

+ - 172 Heart Attack Grill's Top Customer Dies of Heart Attack->

Submitted by Copper Nikus
Copper Nikus (1615089) writes "John Alleman visited the Heart Attack Grill so often, the restaurant designed an entire line of clothing featuring a cartoon of its beloved "Patient Joe," and placed his face front and center on their menu. Now the restaurant reports via its Facebook page that its most loyal patron has passed away at age 52, from a heart attack.

According to the Las Vegas Sun, Alleman suffered a heart attack while waiting for a bus in front of the restaurant, which boasts highly caloric menu items such as the 9,982 calorie Quadruple Bypass Burger, Butterfat Milkshakes and Coronary Dogs.

May he rest in peace."

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Security

+ - 183 NASA: huge water loss in the Middle East->

Submitted by dstates
dstates (629350) writes "Water is a huge global security issue. To understand the middle east, you need to understand that the Golan Heights provides a significant amount of the water used in Israel. Focusing on conflicts and politics means that huge volumes of valuable water are being wasted in the Middle East, and this will only exacerbate future conflicts. Water is a serious issue between India and China. And then there is Africa.US food exports are in effect exporting irrigation water drawn from the Ogallala aquifer. Fracking trades water for energy, and lack of water limits fracking in many parts of th world. Think about it."
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Science

+ - 278 Scientist removed from EPA panel due to industry opposition->

Submitted by Beeftopia
Beeftopia (1846720) writes "The relationship between regulator and regulated is once again called into question as industry pressure leads to a scientist's removal from an EPA regulatory panel. From the article:

"In 2007, when Deborah Rice was appointed chair of an Environmental Protection Agency panel assessing the safety levels of flame retardants, she arrived as a respected Maine toxicologist with no ties to industry. Yet the EPA removed Rice from the panel after an intense push by the American Chemistry Council (ACC), an industry lobbying group that accused her of bias. Her supposed conflict of interest? She had publicly raised questions about the safety of a flame retardant under EPA review."

"

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Science

+ - 180 Oil Dispersants Used During Gulf Spill Degrade Slowly In Cold Water->

Submitted by
MTorrice
MTorrice writes "During the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, clean up crews applied millions of liters of dispersants to break up the oil. At the time, the public and some scientists worried about the environmental effects of the chemicals, in particular how long they would last in the deep sea. According to a new Environmental Protection Agency study, the key active ingredient in the dispersants degrades very rapidly under conditions similar to those found at the Gulf surface during the spill. Meanwhile, in the much colder temperatures found in the deep sea, the breakdown is quite slow. The chemicals’ persistence at deep-sea and Arctic temperatures suggests more research is needed on their toxicity, the researchers say."
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+ - 297 Computers Shown to be Better Than Docs at Diagnosing, Prescribing Treatment->

Submitted by Lucas123
Lucas123 (935744) writes "Applying the same technology used for voice recognition and credit card fraud detection to medical treatments could cut healthcare costs and improve patient outcomes by almost 50%, according to new research. The research by Indiana University found that using patient data with machine-learning algorithms can drastically improve both the cost and quality of healthcare through simulation modeling.The artificial intelligence models used for diagnosing and treating patients obtained a 30% to 35% increase in positive patient outcomes, the research found. This is not the first time AI has been used to diagnose and suggest treatments. Last year, IBM announced that its Watson supercomputer would be used in evaluating evidence-based cancer treatment options for physicians, driving the decision-making process down to a matter of seconds."
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IOS

+ - 125 What Features Belong in a "Smartwatch" Like Apple's Rumored iWatch?->

Submitted by
Nerval's Lobster
Nerval's Lobster writes "If the rumors are true, and Apple is indeed hard at work on a newfangled timepiece (dubbed the "iWatch"), what unique features could such a device offer a public already overloaded with all sorts of handheld devices? Answer that question, and you’re perhaps one step closer to figuring out why Apple—again, if the rumors are true—decided to devote millions of dollars and the precious hours of some very smart people in the effort. This article suggests voice control (via Siri), biometrics, mobile payments, and other possible features, but there must be loads of others that someone could think up."
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The Internet

+ - 151 Internet Still Under Attack by UN, FCC Comish Fears->

Submitted by Velcroman1
Velcroman1 (1667895) writes "At a United Nations conference in December, 89 countries voted in favor of international government regulation of the Internet. Specific regulations have not been agreed upon, but FCC Commissioner Robert McDowell said he fears the U.N. may seek further rulings at a 2014 conference in Busan, Korea. "You’ll have international bureaucrats making engineering and business decisions," McDowell said. The U.N. has no power to force the United States to adopt any Internet regulation, and the U.S. refused to sign the December treaty, along with 55 others countries. But if a large number of countries agree on regulations, the Internet could become fragmented, with very different rules applying in different regions of the world. "That becomes an engineering nightmare," McDowell said."
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+ - 135 Finnish anti-piracy site pirates thepiratebay content->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Finnish copyright lobby TTVK Ry, that earlier ordered the artist promotion site http://promobay.org/ to be censored as "thepiratebay subpage" and later admitted that it's legal (http://torrentfreak.com/pirate-bay-promos-unblocked-in-finland-with-music-industry-blessing-130206/) and got the police to confiscate 9-year-old's winnie the pooh laptop on suspicion of having illegally downloaded a single album (http://torrentfreak.com/police-raid-9-year-old-pirate-bay-girl-confiscate-winnie-the-pooh-laptop-121122/) launched an anti-piracy website http://piraattilahti.fi./ The site closely resembles thepiratebay, and if you take a closer look, you'll notice that css has been directly copied from thepiratebay.se, complete with original site name in comments (http://piraattilahti.fi/css/css.css, pastebin mirror: http://pastebin.com/pV2rjNyb)

Of course one interesting question is, how on earth did they manage to pirate thepiratebay content, considering that they managed to get court orders for major ISP's to censor access to thepiratebay? (http://torrentfreak.com/court-issues-new-blocking-order-against-the-pirate-bay-120611/)"

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Education

+ - 166 Ask Slashdot: Is the bar being lowered in Universities? 2

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "I am in my late 20s, live in the US, work in the IT industry, and am going to school to upgrade from an associate's degree to a bachelor's degree. One of my classes is a web based course that requires students to write blogs. I am not attending one of those questionable for profit schools. This is a state funded, large, public university. In this course I have noticed poor writing skills are the norm rather than the exception. It is a 3rd year course, so students should have successfully completed some sort of writing course prior to this one. Blog posts, which students are graded on, tend to be very poorly written. They are not organized into paragraphs, have multiple run-on sentences, and sometimes don't make sense. I do not know what grades they are receiving for these posts. Slashdot, is what I am seeing the exception, or the norm? Is the bar being lowered for university students, or am I just expecting too much?"
Piracy

+ - 156 Finnish anti-piracy group copies HTML, style sheet from Pirate Bay->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Finland's main anti-piracy group, TTVK, has put a fake Pirate Bay website online . All of the links direct the user to a Finnish anti-piracy message. If you check the source code of the fake BitTorrent website, you can find its largely copied outright from the Pirate Bay website, with the best example being a style sheet that starts with the comment "The main style sheet for the thepiratebay.se"."
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Android

+ - 166 Oracle to Open Source iOS, Android Ports of JavaFX->

Submitted by hypnosec
hypnosec (2231454) writes "Oracle is going to open source JavaFX ports for Android and iOS soon as a part of its efforts to open source the framework. JavaFX, destined to replace Swing GUI library as the default method to develop graphical user interfaces, is a framework used to develop cross-platform rich internet applications (RIAs). The ports for iOS and Android are based on an “unreleased version of JavaSE Embedded for iOS/Android". Oracle’s Richard Bair revealed that the "first bits and pieces" for JavaFX for iOS should probably be out sometime next week. The rest of the release will be scheduled along with the release of prism. Oracle is going to leave javafx-font as closed source but, Bair has said that developers are already working towards an open source native replacement of the component through the OpenJFX list."
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Space

+ - 105 STRaND-1 – World's First Smartphone-Based Satellite Set to Launch->

Submitted by Zothecula
Zothecula (1870348) writes "The University of Surrey’s Surrey Space Centre (SSC) and Surrey Satellite Technology Limited (SSTL) are set to launch the world’s first smartphone-based satellite. Built around a Google Nexus One smartphone running on the Android operating system, the STRaND-1 (Surrey Training, Research and Nanosatellite Demonstrator) satellite will also be the U.K.’s first CubeSat to go into space."
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