Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive


Forgot your password?

Slashdot videos: Now with more Slashdot!

  • View

  • Discuss

  • Share

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).


Is the Bar of Soap Tomorrow's Smarterphone? 141

Posted by timothy
from the next-generation-uses-earwax-proximity dept.
Barence writes "Researchers at MIT have developed a gadget that knows whether you want to use it as a camera or smartphone, just by the way you're holding it. So, if you hold the device, dubbed the Bar of Soap, out in front of you like a camera it will automatically bring up an LCD viewfinder. However, if you then switch to holding it as you would a mobile phone, it will bring up a touchscreen keypad instead. The Bar of Soap utilises a three-axis accelerometer and 72 surface sensors to track the position of the user's fingers and its position."

Comment: Re:If this is true... (Score 1) 328

by CardiganKiller (#26646375) Attached to: Athletes' Brains Reveal Concussion Damage
Brutality to one's opponent and damage to their own body are not mutually bound. I think the psychology of aggression is what causes the damage to the practitioner, but being brutal does not require aggression. A true professional who immerses him or herself into violent situations in order to make a living should reach a point where they do only what's necessary to get the job done and go home. Joint, nerve, and brain damage arise from improper practices. Why hit the skull with one's knuckles, damaging them, when the neck is only a few inches away? Why become overexcited and adrenally charged when the situation requires calm and decisive action? Why spar with a person who wants to kill you? Martial arts that enforce mandatory aggression (Krav Maga for example) in order to be effective are just as terrible as the ineffective arts that make non-aggression mandatory. One damages your body and psyche through training, while the other leaves your body and psyche unprepared for high-stress encounters.

Comment: Re:This is disturbing... (Score 1) 235

by CardiganKiller (#26575125) Attached to: White House Exempts YouTube From Web Privacy Rules
That's not true. The cookie is retrieved on visiting the site--no clicks required. "In multiple tests by this blogger with both Internet Explorer and Firefox, merely visiting pages on the White House blog causes YouTube to set a long-term tracking cookie in the browser--even if the user does not press the play button to start the video." RTFA

Barack Obama Sworn In As 44th President of the US 1656

Posted by timothy
from the worst-job-in-the-whole-world-but-the-best-perks dept.
Just before noon today, Eastern time, Barack Obama was sworn in before the US Capitol building as the 44th President of the United States ( has already been updated to reflect the new President), and offered an inaugural address which outlined some of the challenges that the country currently faces, both within the country's borders and abroad. Obama's election has been called "a civil rights triumph," and his candidacy has inspired perhaps the most visible political involvement of young voters of any candidate since John Kennedy. Here's your chance to discuss the newest occupant of the White House and what you'd like to see happen over the course of his presidency.

The Science and Physics of Back To the Future 436

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the how-many-giga-which? dept.
overthinkingit writes "A scientist has tried to apply serious math and physics, including the Law of Cosines, to analyze how the DeLorean in Back to the Future travels through both Time AND Space: 'in order to pull off the kind of time travel we see in the Back To The Future trilogy — the kind where the traveler is transposed in time, but remains stationary in the same relative position to where he/she left — the DeLorean would have to be an outstanding space ship, in addition to its already laudable work as a time-ship. According to Doc Brown's stopwatch, Einstein the dog travels precisely one minute into the future on this first jump, arriving, relative to their frame of reference, at the same location he left. But how far has this reference frame itself traveled during that one minute?'"

Beginning iPhone Development 216 Screenshot-sm

Posted by samzenpus
from the read-all-about-it dept.
Cory Foy writes "When my wife got a Touch several months back, the first thing I wanted to do was build some applications for it. Who wouldn't want to play with a device that has accelerometers, position sensors and multi-touch gestures? But being new to the Mac world, I needed something to help guide me along. Beginning iPhone Development aims to be that guide. But does it live up to the challenge of teaching a newbie Mac and iPhone developer?" Read below for the rest of Cory's review.
United States

Tech-Related Volunteer Gigs 252

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the open-source-hacking-counts dept.
jeffomatic writes "Here's a question for Service Day: what kind of volunteer opportunities are available out there for the technologically-inclined? I'm a software developer and I'm wondering if there's anyone in the field engaged in pro-bono work, like IT or teaching or web design or whatnot. I'm not at all above rolling my sleeves up and working at shelters or the local park, but it occurs to me that my professional skills might be usefully applied in the service context as well. I'd like to hear about what other people are doing, in terms of projects, time commitments, organizations, etc." Or just commit a patch to your favorite project.
Lord of the Rings

Review: Lord of the Rings: Conquest 68

Posted by Soulskill
from the not-so-precioussss dept.
Pandemic Studios, having enjoyed some success with their release of Star Wars: Battlefront II, sought to bring their style of action game to the Lord of the Rings universe as well. Since both Star Wars and LotR are widely regarded as classics in their respective genres, and both have a rich, deep fan base, the task would appear to be similar in scope. Many were expecting Lord of the Rings: Conquest to be, if nothing else, a playground for Tolkien fans to revel in the environments so vividly brought to life by the movies. Unfortunately, between the short, simplistic campaign and the shallow, uninspired combat, LotR: Conquest merely relies on its name for success, failing to bring the innovation or cleverness that the franchise deserves. Read on for the rest of my thoughts.
United States

US CTO Choice Down To a Two-Horse Race 284

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the i-swear-i'm-qualified dept.
theodp writes "Barack Obama apparently didn't return CmdrTaco's call. BusinessWeek reports that the choices for the first US CTO have narrowed, and it's now a two-horse race between Padmasree Warrior, Cisco's CTO, and Vivek Kundra, who holds the same title for the Government of the District of Columbia. Two very different resumes — which would you advise Obama to pick?" I just know I was #3 on the list.

Dutch Study Says Filesharing Has Positive Economic Effects 336

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the like-helping-kids-save-money-for-college dept.
An anonymous reader writes "In a study conducted by TNO for the Dutch government the economic effects of filesharing are found to be positive. According to the 146 page report (available for download, but in Dutch) filesharing is good for the prosperity of the Dutch: with filesharing more media are available, even though this costs the media industry some profit. One of the most noticeable conclusions is that downloading and buying are not mutually exclusive: downloaders on average buy just as much music as non-downloaders, but they buy more DVDs and games then people who don't download. They also tend to visit more concerts and buy more merchandise."

Mars Desert Research Station Simulates Mars Base 122

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the simulate-having-internet-access dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Placing humans on Mars will be an extraordinary feat in itself, not to mention even living in such a harsh environment. To help train future astronauts to sustain life on Mars, the Mars Society has created the Mars Desert Research Station. The Mars Desert Research Station (MDRS) is one of four planned simulated Mars habitats (or Mars Analogue Research Station Programme) maintained by the Mars Society. Crews sign up for two week shifts during the winter months (it's too hot in the summer for pleasant simulation). Crews are not paid during their time at the station, but do get valuable experience."

Second Prototype of the $200 Open Source Tablet 259

Posted by Soulskill
from the bringing-the-tubes-to-every-coffee-table dept.
holy_calamity writes "TechCrunch blogger Mike Arrington decided last year to invent a new class of low-cost internet tablet using open source hardware and software. The second prototype has been unveiled, sporting a 12-inch touchscreen powered by a Via Nano processor, 1 GB of ram and a 4 GB flash drive. It runs a browser and nothing else on top of a custom Linux build. 'Resolution is 1024×768, which means the vast majority of websites are viewed in full width without scrolling. The device also has wifi, an accelerometer (so when you turn the screen on its side you can view more of a web page), a camera and a four cell battery.'"

EHR Privacy Debate Heats Up 182

Posted by Soulskill
from the doctored-files dept.
CurtMonash writes "The New York Times reports on President-Elect Obama's continued commitment to electronic health records (EHRs), which on the whole are a great idea. The article cites a number of legislative initiatives to deal with the privacy risks of EHRs. That's where things start to go astray. The proposals seem to focus on simply controlling the flow of information, but from a defense-in-depth standpoint, that's not enough. Medical care is full of information waivers, much like EULAs, only with your health at stake. What's more, any information control regime has to have exceptions for medical emergencies — but where legitimate emergencies are routine, socially-engineered fake emergencies can blast security to smithereens. So medical information privacy will never be adequate unless there are strong usage-control rules as well, in areas such as discrimination, marketing, or tabloid-press publication. I've provided some ideas as to how and why that could work well."

Active Directory Comes To Linux With Samba 4 276

Posted by kdawson
from the hyper-active dept.
Da Massive writes in with another possible answer to a recent Ask Slashdot about FOSS replacements for Microsoft AD server. "Enterprise networks now have an alternative choice to Microsoft Active Directory (AD) servers, with the open source Samba project aiming for feature parity with the forthcoming release of version 4, according to Canberra-based Samba developer Andrew Bartlett. Speaking at this year's Linux and open source conference in Hobart, Bartlett said Samba 4 is aiming to be a replacement for AD by providing a free software implementation of Microsoft's custom protocols. Because AD is 'far more than LDAP and Kerberos,' Bartlett said, Samba 4 is not only about developing with Microsoft's customization of those protocols, it is also about moving the project beyond just providing an NT 4 compatible domain manager."

"I am, therefore I am." -- Akira