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Comment: Art project (Score 4, Informative) 375

by Daemonic (#45974777) Attached to: Revolutionary Scuba Mask Creates Breathable Oxygen Underwater On Its Own
Blog-based sources, poor grammar, CG images, and dodgy science apart, one of the sources identifies this as a project from SADI - Samsung Art & Design Institute. There's no sign of it (or anything) on their website, but it would make sense.

Comment: This is not an app it's an entire OS replacement (Score 1) 164

by Daemonic (#36036086) Attached to: Marlinspike's Droid Firewall Kills Tracking
The story, and even the article are misleading.

You need to flash your phone (if one of the two supported) with WhisperCore, and then you get this "app".

So whilst it's a brilliant idea, it's only available to a very small number of users.

Wonder if DroidWall works on a Cyanogenmod G1....?

Comment: Re:OT: sig (Score 1) 533

by Daemonic (#28674255) Attached to: Getting a Classic PC Working After 25 Years?

To drift even more off-topic, I used to work on an "Expert System" where BOOLEAN variables had one of FOUR possible values:

  • YES
  • NO

It's not quite as daft as it sounds - It populated variables by asking users a question, to which they could answer yes/no/don't know. The fourth value was the case where it hadn't asked the user yet.

Comment: If you think rocket fuel's expensive... (Score 1) 361

by Daemonic (#28347341) Attached to: Introducing the Warpship
So okay, we've got this FTL warpship design, yeah?
We can send a spaceship to the far reaches of the universe...
But we lose Jupiter?
Maybe the environmental lobby will have something to say about that.
Not to mention the practical difficulties of finding another spare Jupiter lying around for the second trip.

Comment: Other studies have different ideas (Score 1) 266

by Daemonic (#27152819) Attached to: Asthma Risk Linked To Early TV Viewing
There were headlines last year along the lines of "caesarean birth increases chance of asthma by 80%".

The science behind the headlines is here:

This research too is potentially flawed, but it suggests there are definitely factors other than TV to blame.

Comment: Struggling to find a use for this.. (Score 1) 88

by Daemonic (#27138163) Attached to: Cheap Scanners Can "Fingerprint" Paper
I don't see how it helps crack down on forgery at all. It only enables you to identify a piece of paper you have previously had access to in order to scan its fibres. Then, if you encounter the same physical piece of paper again, you can repeat the scan (which takes several passes using the otherwise conventional over-the-counter scanner).

It DOES enable you to identify a leaked document, if it comes back into your hands, but I don't see why you'd opt for paper fibre scanning over some other sort of hidden watermark technology, or even (gasp) printing a unique id on the document.

Anyone wanting to circumvent this technology could do so with a photocopier and a cigarette lighter.

Comment: Tried it in the UK (Score 1) 409

by Daemonic (#26637039) Attached to: Umbilical Cord Blood Banking?
We wanted to go with Richard Branson's outfit -, which actually seems cheaper than the examples given in the article.

We've no odd family history, we just thought the potential uses of stem cells in the future might be worth having a stock of them guaranteed not to be rejected.

We had to arrange for an outside contractor to come in to the NHS hospital to collect the samples. The NHS staff wouldn't do it. That means that part way through labour you've got to decide it's a good time to phone the agency and have them send someone over in time for delivery.

Then when they do arrive, they're all businesslike, and trying to explain stuff. "Good morning, I'm from the agency." and of course they're met with "I don't care. I'm in the middle of f**king labour, just shut up and get on with it."

I don't think the phlebotomist had done it before, and in the end it failed. We left our baby attached for a while, because it seemed a good idea for other reasons. Sadly, that meant that by the time the phlebotomist tried to collect the blood, there wasn't really any left - the sample was too small/clogged/dried to be serviceable, so there was nothing for us to bank.

I really hope I don't end up regretting that.

The Almighty Buck

+ - Amazon asserts right to adjust prices after sale

Submitted by An anonymous reader
An anonymous reader (666) writes "On December 23, Amazon advertised a "buy one get one free" sale on DVD boxsets, but did not test the promotion before going live. When anyone placed two boxsets in their cart, the website gave a double discount — so the "grand total" shown (before order submission) was $0.00 or something very small. Despite terms stating that Amazon checks order prices before shipping, Amazon shipped the vast majority of orders. Five days later (December 28), after orders had been received and presumably opened, Amazon emailed customers advising them to return the boxsets unopened or customers' credit cards would be charged an additional amount. (You can read more threads about this here and here.) Starting yesterday, Amazon has been (re)charging credit cards, often without authorization. On Amazon's side, they didn't advertise any double discount, and the free or nearly-free boxsets must have cost them a mint. But with Amazon continually giving unadvertised discounts that seem to be errors, is "return the merchandise or be charged" the new way that price glitches will be handled?"

+ - The 1 million pound laptop

Submitted by
An anonymous reader writes "The UK Financial Services Authority (FSA) has imposed a fine of nearly £1m on the Nationwide — the largest building society in the country — because of poor controls over data on a laptop that was stolen from an employee's home. The laptop contained data on 11 million customers, but the Nationwide didn't take any action for 3 weeks. There is no evidence that the confidential data was actually used to disadvantage customers.

According to the FSA, the Nationwide: failed adequately to assess the risks in relation to the security of customer information; had procedures in relation to information security which failed adequately and effectively to manage the risks it faced; failed to implement adequate training and monitoring to ensure that its information security procedures were disseminated and understood by staff; and failed to implement adequate controls to mitigate information security risks, to ensure that employees followed its procedures, and to ensure that it provided an appropriate level of information security.

How many other businesses meet the standards of information security excellence demanded by the FSA?"

+ - Teacher to be jailed for spyware porn incident

Submitted by
BabyGotMac-com writes "A substitute teacher who was given orders to not shut down a computer has been charged and tried and is about to be sentenced to up to 40 years. The system was exposed to malware, and popped up porn banners and sites, exposing a classroom of children to them. Computer experts have vouched for the likelihood of spyware being the cause, but the woman was prosecuted and is scheduled to be sentenced March 2nd. This highlights the lack of technology training in the education arena, both on the administrative side and that of the teacher, who was evidently not even able to turn off the monitor or understand how to deal with the popups. index.html"

Recent research has tended to show that the Abominable No-Man is being replaced by the Prohibitive Procrastinator. -- C.N. Parkinson