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Comment what do others use? (Score 4, Insightful) 299

Since music is a collaborative art, and you are going to want to share music, aren't you better off using what people in your "scene" are using, whether that's your school program or online forum or in the performance venues you frequent? I'd expect that would trump whatever software might look "best" if you were working alone.

Comment go virtual on a dedicated box (Score 2) 158

Once you get used to working virtualized with remote desktop access you'll never go back. Fire up a new "machine" for every work-profile. You can tune the number of processors and memory per VM so that big compile or video render won't step on something that needs to be interactive. After seeing I went out and grabbed a mac mini and a thunderbolt ethernet adapter (for dual ports), and downloaded the free vmware esxi package. It makes everything very easy.

Comment Re: release of gmo seeds? (Score 1) 510

The program was called Cell Biotechnology. This was from a genetics professor. I also recall lectures and discussions of ethics as part of an embryology course (use of human stem cells) and as part of a human genetics course (gene therapy, elective abortion after Amniocentesis, etc.). It would sadden me to think practical ethics issues are not discussed as part of any course of study. It has nothing to do with "don't even try". The gist was this: Make whatever you want in a contained lab. Just don't let it out because you won't be able to contain it again. So, if you want a software analogy, it would kind of be like writing a self replicating computer virus that fixes some known bug and then releasing it onto the Internet. Sounds great at first but often doesn't end well.

Comment release of gmo seeds? (Score 4, Insightful) 510

When I was studying genetics in the late 80's/early 90's, we were taught that releasing GMOs into the environment was immoral. It had nothing to do with whether or not food products were safe, and everything to do with the impossibility of understanding what effect such new organisms would have on the incredibly complex wild environment. When I heard that Monsanto's GMO crops had become superweeds, causing major problems for farmers not growing Monsanto crops, it seemed that what I was taught was correct. From the article, it seems that most of Hawaii's concern is protecting their ecosystems.

Comment Re:Or, stay low tech ... (Score 2) 133

I used to try to keep organized using electronic tools, from the old Newton 120 to Ecco Pro to One Note. I found myself fiddling with software way too much. Now I use black lab books (as above) for work tasks, and pocketable moleskine-style books for personal stuff. If I get really busy with multiple tasks, I keep them in a stack of paper on my desk, and sort by priority every morning. If you need more than this, you might be spending too much time on the process of "keeping organized".

Comment Re:How many don't use the chrome part? (Score 4, Interesting) 321

Bought my Acer Chromebook with the intention of running Linux on it for use as an on-site network diagnostics machine I didn't need to fear getting stolen. I have found myself using it much more in the chrome side of the dual boot. Web browsing, checking mail, and even the occasional netflix movie. Basically what other people use tablets for, except it has a physical keyboard. It's a great little machine.

Submission + - Programming Molecules to Let Chemicals Make Decisions (

Nerval's Lobster writes: Computer scientists at Harvard University have come up with a way to convert algorithms that teach machines to learn into a form that would allow artificial intelligence to be programmed into complex chemical reactions. The ultimate result could be “smart” drugs “programmed” to react differently depending on which of several probable situations they might encounter – without the need to use nano-scale electronics to carry the instructions. “This kind of chemical-based AI will be necessary for constructing therapies that sense and adapt to their environment,” according to Ryan P. Adams, assistant professor of computer science at Harvard’s School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS), who co-wrote the paper explaining the technique. “The hope is to eventually have drugs that can specialize themselves to your personal chemistry and can diagnose or treat a range of pathologies.” The techniques are part of a larger effort to program the behavior of molecules in manufacturing, decision-making and diagnostics, using both nano-scale electronics and the still-relatively-new study of bionanotechnology.

Comment don't underestimate the elderly (Score 1) 370

I know a 70 year old woman who really hadn't used computers much until her recent purchase of an iPhone. She loves it. Facetime, sending pics via sms, email, and google at her fingertips have really enhanced her life. She has become the go-to expert for all her friends and even her daughters on how to use the technology to its fullest.

Use the Force, Luke.