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We've improved Slashdot's video section; now you can view our video interviews, product close-ups and site visits with all the usual Slashdot options to comment, share, etc. No more walled garden! It's a work in progress -- we hope you'll check it out (Learn more about the recent updates).

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+ - Now It's Easy To Tell Congress To Fight Patent Trolls

Submitted by Press2ToContinue
Press2ToContinue (2424598) writes "Application Developers Alliance is running two campaigns to help get the message to Washington. First is the Fight Patent Trolls initiative, which includes a tool for sending a letter to Senators and Representatives.

The second campaign is Innovators Need Patent Reform, an open letter to Congress that makes the same key points along with a public list of signers.

As both letters note, there are already proposals in both the House and the Senate, plus recommendations from the President, that contain some of the all-important protections that the victims of patent trolls need. Though the future of these specific bills is uncertain, the building blocks are beginning to fall into place, and it's time to run with that momentum."

+ - Ask Slashdot: Suggested Beginning Windows Programming resources

Submitted by BootNinja
BootNinja (743040) writes "Hello, Slashdot; I took a couple of intro c++ classes in college back around 2000 and 2001. Since then I have picked up a bit of HTML, CSS, Javascript, PHP, and Perl. I've not done any coding in a couple of years, but I am interested in getting back in the saddle. However, everything I've ever done in past was simple text based web/console type stuff, and I'm looking to develop some skills in gui programming, preferably in C++. What books and/or websites would you recommend as a refresher for basic C++ sytax and data structures, as well as for basic windows and/or gnome programming? Also, what development tools do you find most helpful; i.e. compilers and/or IDE's?"
Microsoft

Microsoft Sells Linux To Wal-Mart 245

Posted by kdawson
from the devil-you-know dept.
Several readers wrote in to let us know that Wal-Mart is planning to buy SUSE Linux vouchers from Microsoft in the course of building out its infrastructure. These are the support vouchers that Microsoft must distribute to hold up its end of the bargain with Novell. Wal-Mart has been a customer of Red Hat Linux. CBR Online notes that the deal is not entirely unexpected because Microsoft's COO, Kevin Turner, is the former CIO of Wal-Mart.
Windows

One In Five Windows Installs Is Non-Genuine 481

Posted by kdawson
from the false-positives dept.
snib writes "Microsoft disclosed Monday that, according to reports collected by the notorious Windows Genuine Advantage tool on millions of users' PCs, 22% of all Windows installs do not pass its validation tests and have therefore been deemed non-genuine. Quoting: 'Since WGA launched in July 2005, over 512 million users have attempted to validate their copy of Windows, Microsoft said. Of those, the non-genuine rate was 22.3 percent... [T]he Business Software Alliance... reports that 35 percent of the world's software is pirated (22 percent in North America)...'"
Biotech

Bionic Cat Eye Implants Aid Blindness Research 94

Posted by kdawson
from the seeing-the-light dept.
docinthemachine writes with news of felines getting human retinal implants. The cats were afflicted with a version of retinitis pigmentosa, a disease that also blinds humans. The implants are 2-millimeter-wide chips surgically implanted in the back of eye. Each chip's surface is covered with 5,000 microphotodiodes that react to light, sending electric signals along the eye's optic nerve to the brain. The article makes clear that the implants don't allow the cats to see — what they get is impulses of light. The hope is that the electrical activity in the optic nerve will encourage new retinal cells to grow. The article notes: "The chips, which provide their own energy, have shown encouraging results in clinical human trials, in some cases improving sight in people with retinitis pigmentosa or at least slowing the disease's development. Narfstrom said chips have been implanted in 30 people."
Slashdot.org

Journal: Slashdot given credit on ForeignPolicy

Journal by sTeF
Congrats /. one of the <subjective>leading</subjective> foreign policy media outlets has mentioned you in their blog. "It's a particularly inauspicious time to be launching a new newspaper, with dead-tree media companies struggling with revenue models that can overcome the Internet's free culture (exemplified by craigslist, the newspaper-killer). And it's not as if the politicos left an institution that doesn
Television

+ - Will lamp problems be the death blow for DLP?

Submitted by
Techno-Canuck
Techno-Canuck writes "Now that the DLP TVs have been in customers' hands for the last few years, there are problem histories that are being to unfold.

Toshiba DLP TV User Manuals state "The average useful service life for the lamp is approximately 8,000 hours in LOW POWER or 6,000 hours in HI BRIGHT MODE.".

However there were problems with certain 2005 Toshiba models that saw the lamp life be only 100's of hours or less. Toshiba replaced the lamps in these models at no cost and extended the lamp warranty to 2 years. Whether or not Toshiba has resolved the problem remains to be seen, as only time will give the real indication. There also seems to be lamp issues with some 2004 models as well, but Toshiba does not seem to be stepping forward to resolve the issues in this case. The customer ire is starting to rise as indicated by this review. Will there be similar problems for the 2006 models once enough time has elapsed?

Maybe the real lamp life is an average of 1500 hours as indicated by this.

Most people probably would use the information provided by Toshiba to make a decision about what the lamp maintenance costs would be for DLP ownership. However if the real lamp life time is 1500 hours, then that's a 400% increase in costs over what Toshiba is presenting to customers. The cost of a lamp is $200 or more, and for a family household that averages 6 to 8 hours of TV viewing per day, this translates to a new lamp every 187 to 250 days. Strangely enough the Toshiba warranty on a replacement lamp not covered by the original TV warranty is 180 days.

Maybe the death blow has already been struck. It appears that Future Shop, probably the largest electronics retailer in Canada, no longer carries DLP TVs in its product line."
PC Games (Games)

Journal: Travelling Tech + World Of Warcraft = BAN

Journal by nobuddy
My buddy for many years received bad news today. His World of Warcraft account, with multiple level 60 characters, is banned. Why? They cite logs that show logins from multiple IP's all over the place in the last few months. The kicker: they ban it just before the expansion, but release the ban on opening day. He buys, installs, and activates BC. He logs in for a few hours, and then gets kicked out. Email arrives: they have re-reviewed and decided the ban is valid, after he spent his $40 on the
The Internet

+ - Usenet is dying - what next?

Submitted by fotoguzzi
fotoguzzi (230256) writes "I'm not a power user, but Usenet made me feel like one. By traversing topic trees or keyword searching Google Groups, I was often delighted to learn that my wide-ranging quests had already been answered, or at least I could find an audience receptive to those questions. This seems no longer true for Usenet, and Google searches of the entire Internet do not seem to uncover similar sects. Has anyone adequately explained the fall of Usenet? Is there a new, improved way to find and communicate with scattered peoples who share a common interest?"

"It ain't so much the things we don't know that get us in trouble. It's the things we know that ain't so." -- Artemus Ward aka Charles Farrar Brown

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