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Comment: Obligatory, #2: Laws of Physics (Score 2) 16

Quote from the article: "The wireless charging works through an energy induction transfer."

Translation #1: There is a coil in the table. There is a coil in the back of the phone. The 2 coils act as a transformer with an air core. That only works if you bought a new phone. (And paid huge amounts for it including the 2-year contract.)

Problem: The coil in the table will also induct energy (induce electricity) into anything that conducts electricity.

So, if a child puts a phone on the charger area that is not one meant for rear-side induction, there will likely be problems.

Library books have chips with high-frequency antennas. The chips help libraries prevent theft. It is possible that putting electricity into the antennas will cause problems.

What else could go wrong? Lots. Some of the chemicals in your body are conductive. So, if you rest your hand on the table, the coil will cause electrical current in your hand.

Translation #2: The CEO of Ikea has no technical knowledge.

+ - Ghostery lists Adobe TypeKit as privacy threat ->

Submitted by Maurits van der Schee
Maurits van der Schee (2943109) writes "In order to provide the Typekit service, Adobe may collect information about the fonts being served to your website. The information is used for the purposes of billing and compliance, and may include the following:

Adobe TypeKit's privacy policy says that, but AFAIK "may include" does not imply "is limited to". Also this "compliance" is not further specified. What do you think? Should I take off my tin-foil hat?"
Link to Original Source

+ - Which classic OOP compiled language: Objective-C or C++?

Submitted by Qbertino
Qbertino (265505) writes "I've been trying to pick up a classic OOP oriented compiled language since the early 90ies and have never gotten around to it. C++ always was on my radar but I'm a little torn to-and-fro with Objective-C. Objective-C is the obvious choice if you also want to make money deving for Mac OS X, but for the stuff I want to do both languages would suffice on all platforms. I do want to start out on x86 Linux though and also use it as my main development platform. Note: The fight is only between these two. Yes, I know quite a few other PLs, but I want to get into a widespread compiled language that has good ties into FOSS and both Objective-C and C++ fit that bill.
I'm leaning towards C++ but what do you recommend? How do these two PLs compare to each other and how easy is cross-plattform development in either? (GUI free, 'headless' applications). Thanks for your opinion."

+ - Genetic Data Analysis Tools Reveal How US Pop Music Evolved

Submitted by KentuckyFC
KentuckyFC (1144503) writes "The history of pop music is rich in anecdotes, folklore and controversy. But despite the keen interest, there is little in the form of hard evidence to back up most claims about the evolution of music. Now a group of researchers have used data analysis tools developed for genomic number crunching to study the evolution of US pop music. The team studied 30-second segments of more than 17,000 songs that appeared on the US Billboard Hot 100 between 1960 and 2010. Their tools categorised the songs according to harmonic features such as chord changes as well as the quality of timbre such as whether guitar-based, piano-based orchestra-based and so on. They then used a standard algorithm for discovering clusters within networks of data to group the songs into 13 different types, which turned out to correspond with well known genres such as rap, rock, country and so on. Finally, they plotted the change in popularity of these musical types over time. The results show a clear decline in the popularity of jazz and blues since 1960. During the same period, rock-related music has ebbed and flowed in popularity. By contrast, was rare before 1980 before becoming the dominant musical style for 30 years until declining in the late 2000s. The work answers several important question about the evolution of pop music, such as whether music industry practises have led to a decline in the cultural variety of new music and whether British bands such as The Beatles and The Rolling Stones triggered the 1964 American music revolution [spoiler: no in both cases]."

+ - How Does One Verify Hard Drive Firmware? 1

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "In light of recent revelations from Kaspersky Labs about the Equation Group and persistent hard drive malware, I was curious about how easy it might be to verify my own system's drives to see if they were infected. I have no real reason to think they would be, but I was dismayed by the total lack of tools to independently verify such a thing. For instance, Seagate's firmware download pages provide files with no external hash, something Linux distributions do for all of their packages. Neither do they seem to provide a utility to read off the current firmware from a drive and verify its integrity.

Are there any utilities to do such a thing? Why don't these companies provide such a thing to users? Has anyone compiled and posted a public list of known-good firmware hashes for the major hard drive vendors and models? This seems to be a critical hole in PC security.

I did contact Seagate support asking for hashes of their latest firmware; I got a response stating that '...If you download the firmware directly from our website there is no risk on the file be tampered with." [their phrasing, not mine]. Methinks somebody hasn't been keeping up with world events lately."

+ - Oracle Sues 5 Oregon Officials for "improper influence"

Submitted by SpzToid
SpzToid (869795) writes "Following up on an earlier Slashdot story, the Oracle Corporation has filed a rather timely suit against five of former governor John Kitzhaber's staff for their "improper influence" in the decision to shutter the Cover Oregon healthcare website, while blaming Oracle to defuse the political consequences. Oracle argues the website was ready to go before the state decided to switch to the federal exchange in April.

"The work on the exchange was complete by February 2014, but going live with the website and providing a means for all Oregonians to sign up for health insurance coverage didn’t match the former-Governor's re-election strategy to 'go after' Oracle,” Oracle spokeswoman Deborah Hellinger said in a statement.

Kitzhaber resigned last week amid criminal probes into an influence-peddling scandal involving allegations that his fiancée used her position in his office for personal gain."

+ - UNDER U.S. PRESSURE, PAYPAL NUKES MEGA FOR ENCRYPTING FILES->

Submitted by seoras
seoras (147590) writes "After coming under intense pressure PayPal has closed the account of cloud-storage service Mega. According to the company, SOPA proponent Senator Patrick Leahy personally pressured Visa and Mastercard who in turn called on PayPal to terminate the account. Bizarrely, Mega's encryption is being cited as a key problem.... ... What makes the situation more unusual is that PayPal reportedly apologized to Mega for its withdrawal while acknowledging that company’s business is indeed legitimate.
However, PayPal also advised that Mega’s unique selling point – it’s end-to-end-encryption – was a key concern for the processor.""

Link to Original Source

+ - Blu-Ray Players Hackable via Malicious Discs

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Blu-Ray disc interactive features use Java and Stephen Tomkinson just posted a blog discussing research showing how using a specially created Blu-Ray discs it is possible to hack a couple of players. He hacked one Linux based network connected player to get root due to issues introduced by the vendor. Similarly he did the same thing against Windows Blu-Ray player software. He then combined both along with detection techniques into one disc.."

Comment: Summary: Poor management, dishonesty (Score 1) 343

by Futurepower(R) (#49153927) Attached to: The Programmers Who Want To Get Rid of Software Estimates
Interesting.

You said, "... poor program management, lack of requirements management, and often also marketing-driven decision-making."

Overall, that is poor management of technical projects. The biggest single problem? Dishonesty, on several levels.

The first step in improving management is to get everyone to understand that there is poor management.

+ - Ask SD: How do you handle the discovery of a web site disclosing private data?

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "I recently discovered that a partner web site of a financial institution I do business with makes it trivially easy to view documents that do not belong to me. As in, change the document ID in a URL and view someone else's financial documents. This requires no authentication, only a document URL. (Think along the lines of an online rebate center where you upload documents including credit card statements.) I immediately called customer service and spoke with a perplexed agent who unsurprisingly didn't know what to do with my call. I asked to speak with a supervisor who took good notes and promised a follow-up internally. I asked for a return call but have not yet heard back. In the meantime, I still have private financial information I consider to be publicly available. I'm trying to be responsible and patient in my handling of this, but I am second guessing how to move forward if not quickly resolved. So, Slashdot, how would you handle this situation?"

+ - NSA Spying Wins Another Rubber Stamp->

Submitted by schwit1
schwit1 (797399) writes "The FISA court has again renewed an order allowing the NSA to continue its illegal bulk collection of Americans' phone records, at least until June 1 when it is set to expire in Congress. President Obama pledged to end the controversial program more than a year ago.

The extension is the fifth of its kind since Obama said he would effectively end the Snowden-exposed program as it currently exists during a major policy speech in January 2014. Obama and senior administration officials have repeatedly insisted that they will not act alone to end the program without Congress.

After all the other things he's done against or without congressional approval and he balks at this one?"

Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:Stomp Feet (Score 4, Informative) 379

by smaddox (#49152529) Attached to: Verizon Posts Message In Morse Code To Mock FCC's Net Neutrality Ruling

(the oft discussed "fast lane" has yet to actually happen)

I get about 5x lower bandwidth streaming movies from Amazon than from Netflix. I've stopped renting HD movies from Amazon because the buffering kills it. Netflix happens to have paid to AT&T (my ISP) to get preferred service [1].

Hmm... That sounds an awful lot like a "fast lane" to me.

[1] http://time.com/3059431/netfli...

Neutrinos have bad breadth.

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