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Submission + - Alien Megastructures are less likely than a catastrophic wasteland

StartsWithABang writes: When you find huge amounts of periodically missing flux from a star, you know something interesting must be going on. Even a Jupiter-sized planet couldn't do very much, so that leads us to consider other options. While Alien Megastructures might be the most hoped-for option, more mundane considerations like destroyed planets or swarms of comets are probably the cause instead.

Submission + - How a Frozen Neutrino Observatory Grapples with Staggering Amounts of Data (

citadrianne writes: "If the filtered data from the Pole amounts to ~36TB/year [this number was so incredible we had to double check it was not a typo -Ed.], the processed data amounts to near 100TB/year." Gonzalo Merino, the IceCube computing facilities manager at UW-Madison, wrote in an unencrypted email.

This data gets stored at UW-Madison, Merino wrote, and "all the data taken since the start of the detector construction is kept on disk so that it can be all analyzed in one go."

In total, the IceCube project is storing around 3.5 petabytes (that's around 3.5 million gigabytes, give or take) in the UW-Madison data center as of this writing.

Submission + - Cassandra rewritten in C++, ten times faster 1

urdak writes: At Cassandra Summit opening today, Avi Kivity and Dor Laor (who had previously written KVM and OSv) announced ScyllaDB — an open-source C++ rewrite of Cassandra, the popular NoSQL database. ScyllaDB claims to achieve a whopping 10 times more throughput per node than the original Java code, with sub-millisecond 99%ile latency. They even measured 1 million transactions per second on a single node. The performance of the new code is attributed to writing it in Seastar — a C++ framework for writing complex asynchronous applications with optimal performance on modern hardware.

Submission + - Slashdots stops sucking effective immediately!!

GrabbaTheButt writes: In a complete 180 degree turn of events, the overlords at Dice have decided to end all Slashvertisments, kill Beta and end all stories that have no place on this site.

When asked why such a radical change? Management said "we have decided to start listening to our user community and stop thinking straight out of our asses".

Submission + - Linux Compatible High-End Laptop With Open BIOS Is Being Crowdsourced (

Luarvic writes: Purism Librem 15 is a high-end laptop designed to respect your freedom and privacy. All its hardware is fully compatible with Linux and requires no proprietary drivers or firmware to work. Its BIOS will be open source Coreboot in final production version. The hardware specs are quite impressive: 15.6" display with resolution a buyer can choose between full HD (1920x1080) and 4K (3840x2160), powerful 4-core 3.4 GHz 64-bit Intel Core i7 4770HQ processor supporting full hardware virtualisation, 4 RAM slots for up to 32GB memory, full-size backlit keyboard with normal F-keys, 3 USB 3.0 ports, extra drive bay which can contain either DVD drive, or extra HD or SSD. Many components like battery, HDD/SSD, RAM, wireless card can be easily replaced or upgraded after unscrewing a few screws.

Crownfunding campaign to fund production of the first batch of Purism Librem 15 is now in progress at Crowd Supply until end of January. Laptops are expected to be shipped to campaign backers in April 2015 if the campaign succeeds.

There is a positive review of Purism Librem 15 in Linux Journal.

Submission + - The Ultimate Tech the US, Russia, China and India All Want: Hypersonic Weapons (

An anonymous reader writes: They can hit any target in 30 minutes or less. They travel anywhere from Mach 5 to Mach 25. All the major powers want them and many look at them as a military game changer--if only they can make them work. Are hypersonic weapons the future of military doctrine?

Hypersonic weapons--or ballistic weapons that can hit a target flying many times faster than the speed of sound have been hyped since the 1970s. Currently almost all of the major powers are trying to build them. The US and China seem to be the furthest along and are working on various types of systems. China hopes such weapons could be a game changer and deter any US actions in Asia.

There is however one big problem (besides the insane amount of technology to make them work considering their speed): a possible arms race and the threat they could lead to a nuclear war:

"According to some analysts, the development of hypersonic weapons creates the conditions for a new arms race, and could risk nuclear escalation. Given that the course of hypersonic research has acknowledged both of these concerns, why have several countries started testing the weapons?"

Submission + - Phone calls on Android "small priority" according to Google

JohnConnor writes: Nexus 4 users can not reliably make phone calls, as the device works for one call only after each reboot. Google has yet failed to acknowledge the problem, who is still in triage and has been assigne the priority "small". The problem seems to be affecting stock Android 5.0.1 as well as the latest release of Cyanogenmod based on KitKat. The issue is present since at least October 24th when it was first reported. Let's hope that all the 911 calls that are not being made on Nexus 4 phones right now due to this bug are all "small priority".

Submission + - Mars Rover Opportunity Suffers Worrying Bouts of 'Amnesia' (

astroengine writes: Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity has been exploring the Martian surface for over a decade — that’s an amazing ten years longer than the 3-month primary mission it began in January 2004. But with its great successes, inevitable age-related issues have surfaced and mission engineers are being challenged by an increasingly troubling bout of “amnesia” triggered by the rover's flash memory. “The problems started off fairly benign, but now they’ve become more serious — much like an illness, the symptoms were mild, but now with the progression of time things have become more serious,” Mars Exploration Rover Project Manager John Callas, of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., told Discovery News.

Comment Yes I in fact do. (Score 1) 1

This is a political site. Anyone can read the so called "main feed", but if you want to post or comment you have to pay (currently $5/month). There's also a code of conduct which editors enforce. The discourse is amazingly civil even on controversial topics. (link goes to an editor's post regarding how they "fixed" the troll problem and it works great for them.) It feels to me more like a real community than any other site I read, including /.

Submission + - Cops with Google Glass: Horrible Idea, or Good One? (

Nerval's Lobster writes: Earlier this week, news reports leaked that the NYPD is evaluating whether to give its officers Google Glass for investigations and patrols. Google, which is sensitive to accusations that it works hand-in-hand with governments or law-enforcement agencies to monitor civilians, suggested that the NYPD must have purchased the units on its own initiative, rather than partner with the company. Some pundits and many civil libertarians hate the idea of law enforcement wearing Google Glass or other electronics that can send a constant stream of video and audio to a government (or even third-party) server. But at the same time, wearing Google Glass could also compel cops (and other law-enforcement personnel) to be on their best behavior at all times, particularly when it comes to use of force; the prospect of instantly available video detailing every aspect of an officer’s shift could prove a powerful incentive to behave in a courteous and professional manner. But that’s a very broad assumption; the reality—if cops really do start wearing Google Glass and other video-equipped electronics in large numbers—will likely end up determined by lots and lots of lawsuits and court-actions, many of them stemming from real-world incidents. Do you think cops should have Google Glass and other wearable electronics? And if so, what sort of regulations could be put in place to ensure that such technology isn't abused by the powers that be?

Submission + - Slashdot is dead 3

An anonymous reader writes: I saw it with my own eyes

Submission + - BOOOO

An anonymous reader writes: BETA BOOOOOOOO

Submission + - Dice Holdings has written off Slashdot Media at the close of 2013 ( 3

moogla writes: Apparently could not make Slashdot work they way they wanted to; with a murky plan to tap into the Slashdot-reader community to somehow drive attention or insight into other Dice Holdings properities, they've burned through

$7.2 million of intangible assets and $6.3 million of goodwill related to Slashdot Media

and have only started to realize some improvement on related sites. With ad revenue declining and not expected to pick up (read: everyone who uses Slashdot uses adblocking softwarwe), it appears that the Slashdot stewardship experiment by Dice Holdings has been a financial failure. Since the site has been redesigned in a user-hostile fashion with a very generic styling, this reader surmises Dice Holdings is looking to transform or transfer the brand into a generic Web 3.0 technology property. The name may be more valuable than the user community (since we drive no revenue nor particularly use's services).

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