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Crime

Submission + - FTC short-circuits privacy-invading computer spy ring->

coondoggie writes: "The Federal Trade Commission today said it settled a case that involved seven rent-to-own PC firms and a software vendor which worked together to spy on consumers using the rented computers. The software captured screenshots of confidential and personal information, logged computer keystrokes, and in some cases took webcam pictures of people in their homes, all without owner notice or consent."
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Science

Submission + - Now, Einstein's brain is an interactive iPad app->

puddingebola writes: From the article, "After Einstein's death, a pathologist named Thomas Harvey performed an autopsy, removing the scientist's brain, hoping that future researchers could discover the secrets behind his genius. However, as the tissue was preserved before modern imagingtechnology, it may be difficult to figure out exactly where in Einstein's brain each slide originated. The new app organises the slides into general brain regions, however, it does not map them with precision to an anatomical model."
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Comment Irritating to the socially disadvantaged. (Score 1) 72 72

No matter my easygoing, optimistic, humorous internal state -- I have a disability whereby I look cranky and/or crazy. I get social crapola by the ton. People treat me like crap. I AM easygoing optimistic and humorous. Will I live long and prosper...or die young?? This study is irritating.
Science

Submission + - Blue Light is "Magic" Day Length Cue->

Clogoddess writes: Flowering plants (in other words, food) often flowers based on the day length. Research news! Scientists find that plants with day length awareness detect BLUE light. Atmospheric scattering is greatest in the blue/violet end of the spectrum(*) making plants' choice of blue light the most sensitive color choice to detect seasonal change. Smart vegetables? I for one munch cheerfully on our tasty lettuce overlords!
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Submission + - Star Trek Luminaries Become The Fastest Funded Film Project on Kickstarter->

An anonymous reader writes: Legendary sci-fi writer Marc Zicree (Star Trek, Babylon 5, Sliders) and special effects wizard Doug Drexler (Star Trek, Battlestar Galactica) just became the fastest funded film project on Kickstarter. They're currently working together to bring back sci-fi! They're using crowd-funding website kickstarter to directly communicate with and enlist the support of fans for their latest project Space Command. Maybe with direct communication with the fans, sci-fi fans can rest easy and not have to worry about their favorite shows being cancelled like FireFly. If you want to check out the website at spacecommandmovie.com.
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Businesses

Ask Slashdot: Why Not Linux For Security? 627 627

An anonymous reader writes "In Friday's story about IBM's ban on Cloud storage there was much agreement, such as: 'My company deals with financial services. We are not allowed to access Dropbox either.' So why isn't Linux the first choice for all financial services? I don't know any lawyers, financial advisers, banks, etc., that don't use Windows. I switched to Linux in 2005 — I'm well aware that it's not perfect. But the compromises have been so trivial compared to the complete relief from dealing with Windows security failings. Even if we set aside responsibility and liability, business already do spend a lot of money and time on trying to secure Windows, and cleaning up after it. Linux/Unix should already be a first choice for the business world, yet it's barely even known of. It doesn't make sense. Please discuss; this could use some real insight. And let's at least try to make the flames +5 funny."
Education

Submission + - Barter-Based School Catching on Globally->

sethopia writes: "In 2010, three people had the crazy idea to start a school where the teachers teach whatever they want and the students pay for classes with whatever teachers need—cutlery, art, advice—but never with money. Trade Schools have been popping up around the world and are now active in 15 cities and 10 countries, with almost no prodding from its founders. Caroline Woolard, one of the founders, discusses the challenges and opportunities of adapting their idea to an international audience and making the Trade School software—based on Python and Django—great."
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Idle

Submission + - 19 year old squatted at AOL for 2 months->

mrnick writes: "Eric Simons, 19 years old, was working at incubator, Imagine K2, in Silicon Valley and when his grant money ran out he moved into the office. He slept on a couch, took showers and washed clothes in the office gym, and ate for free in the cafeteria all the while working on his new start-up. He was able to get away with this for two months before being discovered by security guard."
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Bitcoin

Submission + - Hacked Bitcoin Financial Site Had No Backups->

An anonymous reader writes: A fortnight ago the Bitcoin financial website Bitcoinica was hacked and the hacker stole $87,000 worth of Bitcoins. At the time the owner promised that all users would have their Bitcoins and US dollars returned in full, but one of the site developers has just confirmed that they have no database backups and are having difficulty figuring out what everyone's account balance should actually be. A failure of epic proportions for a site holding such large amounts of money.
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Comment Good point, copyrights and iP corrupted, so: (Score 1) 577 577

I want to free my copyright and trademark protected intellectual property. Advice on what legal formalities need to be considered? Stifle creativity = bad ethics. Free currently IP-protected creativity = creative gift! But, how?

Comment Taxation Tarnation (Score 1) 911 911

RADIO: CBS News reported two weeks ago that tax laws changes (US) recently created onerous reporting burdens, to the tune of thousands of dollars in paperwork fees. I can't find a link to that news article, but NYTimes (ref below) also reports,

  • “The administrative costs of being an American and living outside the U.S. have gone up dramatically,” said Marnin Michaels, a tax lawyer with Baker & McKenzie in Zurich. (and...) After Congress sharply raised taxes this year for many Americans living abroad, some international tax lawyers say they detect rising demand from citizens to renounce ties with the United States, the only developed country that taxes it citizens while they live overseas. Americans abroad are also taxed in the countries where they live.“

Increased citizens fleeing, passport returns, well darn it--it has been reported--they are objecting to unfair taxation. In a Foghorn leghorn voice, "I says un-fair tax-ation!

The number of people trolling loudly about taxes owed by people who use United States' elite infrastructure--please be properly grateful to citizens living abroad and not "using up" any of that 1337 infrastructure!

Reference: http://www.nytimes.com/2006/12/18/world/18expat.html?_r=1&ex=1182312000&en=a0208f4fcc1484bc&ei=5070

Facebook

Facebook Tests the Waters With Paid Perks 204 204

CNET reports that Facebook has experimented lately with a small group of users by offering people the chance to promote their own account status messages the old-fashioned way: by paying for them. The author of the linked article asks whether it's inevitable that "Facebook will have to start dinging users in earnest," post-IPO. Facebook still says "It's free and always will be," but that doesn't rule out paying for additional features — that's certainly a model that many game makers had adopted.

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