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+ - BlackBerry's square-screened phone to free us from our "rectangular world"

Submitted by EthanV2
EthanV2 (1211444) writes "Most smartphones produced in 2014 will follow a certain design playbook: rectangular screen, a few buttons around the edges, and just enough thickness to house the internals and the requisite battery. One could argue that this is the idealized design for a touchscreen phone, arrived at after years of research and development and even more years of booming sales. BlackBerry would argue that all phones look like this because innovation is dead."
Government

The Feds Accidentally Mailed Part of A $350K Drone To Some College Kid 157

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the finders-keepers dept.
Jason Koebler (3528235) writes "A Redditor got more than he bargained for in the mail today: He was accidentally mailed parts to a $350,000 environment and wildlife monitoring drone owned by the National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration. 'We sent a set of about eight boxes for this one aircraft system, and one was misdelivered by UPS. We're working with UPS to find it,' the federal agency says."

+ - XP Systems Getting Emergency IE Zero Day Patch->

Submitted by msm1267
msm1267 (2804139) writes "Microsoft announced it will release an out-of-band security update today to patch a zero-day vulnerability in Internet Explorer, and that the patch will also be made available for Windows XP machines through Automatic Update. At the same time, researchers said they are now seeing attacks specifically targeting XP users.

Microsoft no longer supports XP as of April 8, and that includes the development and availability of security updates. But the about-face today speaks to the seriousness of the vulnerability, which is being exploited in limited targeted attacks, Microsoft said.

Researchers at FireEye, meanwhile, said multiple attackers are now using the exploit against XP machines, prompting the inclusion of XP systems in the patch."

Link to Original Source
Music

CES 2014: Stefan Lindsay Demonstrates the gTar (Video) 104

Posted by Roblimo
from the gitarzan-is-a-gtar-man-who-hangs-by-his-knees-without-a-trapeze dept.
It looks like an ordinary electric guitar, except for a little LED screen on its body and blinking lights up and down the fretboard that show you where your fingers should go. But the gTar, besides being "The First Guitar That Anybody Can Play," hooks to your iPhone. The gTar app includes "...a variety of classical guitar pieces, modern rock, pop, and everything in between." The gTar Kickstarter campaign in 2012 raised $353,392 even though it only asked for $100,000. The company that makes the gTar, Incident Technologies, started in a garage in Cupertino (Silicon Valley) and is now located in San Francisco after several moves caused by the company's rapid growth. On their Support page they say, "We don't have a brick-and-mortar location for you to try the gTar yet, but we're working on it. In the meantime, check us out at events like Maker Faire, TechCrunch Disrupt, and many others."

+ - Bradley Manning gets 35 years in prison->

Submitted by EthanV2
EthanV2 (1211444) writes "US Army Pfc. Bradley Manning was sentenced to 35 years in a military prison this morning after being convicted of 20 counts related to his leaking classified documents to WikiLeaks, which consisted mostly of diplomatic cables. (He escaped conviction on the most serious charge of "aiding the enemy.") In addition, he will also forfeit all of his pay and allowances, have his rank reduced to private, and be dishonorably discharged."
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Education

Getting a Literature Ph.D. Will Make You Into a Horrible Person 489

Posted by Soulskill
from the or-is-it-the-reverse dept.
An anonymous reader writes "An assistant professor at Ohio State University who recently earned her Ph.D. in literature writes a warning in Slate for others following the same path. She says, 'I now realize graduate school was a terrible idea because the full-time, tenure-track literature professorship is extinct. After four years of trying, I've finally gotten it through my thick head that I will not get a job—and if you go to graduate school, neither will you. ... Don't misunderstand me. There is unquantifiable intellectual reward from the exploration of scholarly problems and the expansion of every discipline—yes, even the literary ones, and even if that means doing bat-s**t analysis like using the rule of "false elimination" to determine that Josef K. is simultaneously guilty and not guilty in The Trial. But there is one sort of reward you will never get: monetary compensation from a stable, non-penurious position at a decent university. ... By the time you finish—if you even do— your academic self will be the culmination of your entire self, and thus you will believe, incomprehensibly, that not having a tenure-track job makes you worthless. You will believe this so strongly that when you do not land a job, it will destroy you, and nobody outside of academia will understand why. (Bright side: You will no longer have any friends outside academia.) ... In the place of actual jobs are adjunct positions: benefit-free, office-free academic servitude in which you will earn $18,000 a year for the rest of your life."
Cloud

Massachusetts May Try To Tax the Cloud 172

Posted by timothy
from the if-it-moves-tax-it-if-it's-ephemeral-tax-it dept.
CowboyRobot writes "A proposed tax in Massachusetts may affect software services and Web design and hosting. If approved, the state estimates the tax may bring in a quarter billion dollars in 2014 by expanding its tax on 'canned software' to include some elements of cloud computing. The tax would cover custom-designed software and services based in the cloud. "Custom" software includes the design of Web sites, so the cost to local businesses of a new Web site would increase by 4.5% on contracts to design the site, write Java, PHP or other custom code. The cost of site hosting and bandwidth would also be taxed."
Iphone

+ - Samsung Hits Apple With 20% Price Increase->

Submitted by EthanV2
EthanV2 (1211444) writes "The Wall Street Journal cites a report which quotes a "person familiar with negotiations between the two tech giants", apparently confirming this special price hike for Apple. The source said: "Samsung Electronics recently asked Apple for a significant price raise in (the mobile processor known as) application processor. "Apple first disapproved it, but finding no replacement supplier, it accepted the [increase].""
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The bogosity meter just pegged.

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