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We've improved Slashdot's video section; now you can view our video interviews, product close-ups and site visits with all the usual Slashdot options to comment, share, etc. No more walled garden! It's a work in progress -- we hope you'll check it out (Learn more about the recent updates).


+ - NVIDIA Fixes Old Compiz Bug

Submitted by jones_supa
jones_supa (887896) writes "NVIDIA has fixed a long-standing issue in the Ubuntu Unity desktop by patching Compiz. When opening the window of a new application, it would go black or become transparent on NVIDIA hardware. There has been bug reports dating back to Ubuntu 12.10 times. The problem was caused by Compiz, which had some leftover code from a port. An NVIDIA developer posted on Launchpad and said that the NVIDIA team has been looking at this issue and they also proposed a patch. "Our interpretation of the specification is that creating two GLX pixmaps pointing at the same drawable is not allowed, because it can lead to poorly defined behavior if the properties of both GLX drawables don't match. Our driver prevents this, but Compiz appears to try to do this.", wrote NVIDIA's Arthur Huillet. The Compiz patch has been accepted upstream."

+ - Astronomers Find a Dusty Galaxy That Shouldn't Exist->

Submitted by schwit1
schwit1 (797399) writes "Peering back in time to find the very earliest objects in the universe, an international team of astronomers has discovered a galaxy that shouldn't be there at all.

The problem, the scientists report Monday in Nature , is that while the tiny galaxy dates from just 700 million years or so after the big bang, it's far more dusty than something this young and small has any right to be.

The dusty galaxy is just one of the recent surprises astronomers have found. "Last week," says Marrone, "we learned of an incredibly massive black hole in the early universe. Now we have this average galaxy with significant amounts of dust. We've had this cartoon picture of the early universe, but it's clear that we really don't know what's going on.""

Link to Original Source

+ - New Seagate Shingled hard drive teardown

Submitted by Peter Desnoyers
Peter Desnoyers (11115) writes "Shingled Magnetic Recording (SMR) drives are starting to hit the market, promising larger drives without heroic (and expensive) measures such as helium fill, but at a cost — data can no longer be over-written in place, requiring SSD-like algorithms to handle random writes.

At the USENIX File and Storage Technologies conference in February, researchers from Northeastern University (disclaimer — I'm one of them)
dissected shingled drive performance both figuratively and literally, using both micro-benchmarks and a window cut in the drive to uncover the secrets of Seagate's first line of publicly-available
SMR drives.

TLDR: It's a pretty good desktop drive — with write cache enabled (the default for non-server setups) and an intermittent workload it performs quite well, handling bursts of random writes (up to a few tens of GB total) far faster than a conventional drive — but only if it has long powered-on idle periods for garbage collection. Reads and large writes run at about the same speed as on a conventional drive, and at $280 it costs less than a pair of decent 4TB drives. For heavily-loaded server applications, though, you might want to wait for the next generation.

Videos (in 16x slow motion) showing the drive in action — sequential read after deliberately fragmenting the drive, and a few thousand random writes."

+ - Photo First: Light Captured as Both Particle and Wave->

Submitted by mpicpp
mpicpp (3454017) writes "It’s one of those enduring Zen koans of science that we’ve all grown up with: Light behaves as both a particle and a wave—at the same time. Einstein taught us that, so we’re all generally on board, but to actually understand what it means would require several Ph.D.s and a thorough understanding of quantum physics.

What’s more, scientists have never been able to devise an experiment that documents light behaving as both a wave and a particle simultaneously. Until now.

That’s the contention of a team of Swiss and American researchers, who say they’ve succeeded in capturing the first-ever snapshot of light’s dual behavior. Using an advanced electron microscope – one of only two on the planet – at the EPFL labs in Switzerland, the team has generated a kind of quantum photograph of light behaving as both a particle and a wave.

The experiment involves firing laser light at a microscopic metallic nanowire, causing light to travel — as a wave — back and forth along the wire. When waves traveling in opposite directions meet, they form a “standing wave” that emits light itself — as particles. By shooting a stream of electrons close to the nanowire, the researchers were able to capture an image that simultaneously demonstrates both the wave-nature and particle-nature of light.

“This experiment demonstrates that, for the first time ever, we can film quantum mechanics — and its paradoxical nature — directly,” says lead researcher Fabrizio Carbone of EPFL, on the lab’s project page. The study is to be officially published this week in the journal Nature Communications."

Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:Great News (Score 1) 230

I, for one, am concerned over the constant use of the words "legal content" without defining what is and what isn't "legal content" and under what jurisdictions that falls. My pet theory is that bullying and "hate speech" will become unlawful and then blocked, and you know how the government is when it has a new hammer; everything starts to look like our thumbs.

+ - Google Taking Over New TLDs->

Submitted by bobo the hobo
bobo the hobo (302407) writes "In the corner of the internet where people care about DNS, there is a bit of an uproar at Google's application for over a hundred new top-level domains, including .dev, .lol, .app, .blog, .cloud and .search. Their application includes statements such as:
By contrast, our application for the .blog TLD describes a new way of automatically linking new second level domains to blogs on our Blogger platform – this approach eliminates the need for any technical configuration on the part of the user and thus makes the domain name more user friendly.

And also limiting usage of .dev to Google only:
Second-level domain names within the proposed gTLD are intended for registration and use by Google only, and domain names under the new gTLD will not be available to the general public for purchase, sale, or registration. As such, Charleston Road Registry intends to apply for an exemption to the ICANN Registry Operator Code of Conduct as Google is intended to be the sole registrar and registrant."

Link to Original Source

+ - 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

+ - How Machine Learning Ate Microsoft

Submitted by snydeq
snydeq (1272828) writes "Yesterday's announcement of Azure Machine Learning offers the latest sign of Microsoft's deep machine learning expertise — now available to developers everywhere, InfoWorld reports. 'Machine learning has infiltrated Microsoft products from Bing to Office to Windows 8 to Xbox games. Its flashiest vehicle may be the futuristic Skype Translator, which handles two-way voice conversations in different languages. Now, with machine learning available on the Azure cloud, developers can build learning capabilities into their own applications: recommendations, sentiment analysis, fraud detection, fault prediction, and more. The idea of the new Azure offering is to democratize machine learning, so you no longer need to hire someone with a doctorate to use a machine learning algorithm.'"

+ - Intel Employee here. Intel says it's for Net Neutrality, but isn't?

Submitted by whistlingtony
whistlingtony (691548) writes "I work for Intel.

I'm not in a position of authority. I work in the Fab. This is NOT my area of expertise, although I care about the issue and try to be informed.

I was pretty bummed to find that Intel was on an letter with other companies against Title II regulation.

I also ran into a little piece on the company intranet about Net Neutrality, and emailed the author. It turns out he is, I believe, Intel's main lobbyist in Washington D.C.

He told me that Intel was FOR Net Neutrality. It seems everyone thinks that we're against it.

After speaking to him via phone and email, I got pretty discouraged. It really feels to me as if Intel is trying to say "Yay! We're for NN!" while doing everything it can to sink real regulation and oversight.

After talking to the guy for a while, It seems Intel believes that Title II regulation will slow growth. In addition, Intel thinks that the FCC has all the authority it needs under section 706, so the FCC shouldn't TRY for Title II regulation.

I think that's hogwash, to be polite. I hope it's the position of this one guy, and not the company? I doubt this though.

Frankly, I think that Intel will do well in a competitive environment. Without Net Neutrality, we WILL have a less competitive environment. I'm afraid of broadband companies strangling the next Google or Netflix because they don't want the competition for their own services. As a stockholder, I think this is a bad move.

I also don't think the Broadband companies will spend less under Title II. Oh, they SAY they will, but of course they do... What else would they say?

Frankly, I think broadband companies are simply afraid of unbundling. Back in the dial up days when most of us got our internet over the phone lines, there was Title II regulation and the ISPs had to lease their lines to competitors at sane prices. This gave us choice and competition. You could go get a mom and pop local company to be your ISP, and their service was AWESOME. I think the entire resistance to Title II is that the ISPs don't want those days again. Comcast has long been one of the worst companies in America in terms of customer service and satisfaction.

I don't know why Intel is following their lead. We should want MORE competition, not less. Why are we doing this?

I looked into section 706, and it seems to lack a LOT of teeth. Our main lobbyist said that the FCC could use section 706, but Title II would be tied up in the courts for a long time.

I read up on court cases from 2014, and the circuit court in D.C. said that the FCC gave up it's authority and that all it needed to do was reclassify to title II and it could have it back. The courts themselves seem to disagree with Intel's position. Section 706 is a mandate to report and vague permission to do something if broadband coverage isn't widely spread enough. It's very vague, and WILL be tied up in the courts.

From the court case...

“Even though section 706 grants the Commission authority to promote broadband deployment by regulating how broadband providers treat edge providers, the Commission may not utilize that power in a manner that contravenes any specific prohibition contained in the Communications Act. ... We think it obvious that the Commission would violate the Communications Act were it to regulate broadband providers as common carriers. Given the Commission’s still-binding decision to classify broadband providers not as providers of “telecommunications services” but instead as providers of “information services,” such treatment would run afoul of section 153(51).”

I think it's pretty disingenious for Intel to say that we're for Net Neutrality while we try to sink it. I think Intel is lying to people, and I don't like it, as a customer, as an employee, and as a shareholder.

The FCC is voting to decide if we get Title II regulation BACK (We had it before and it was awesome) on the 26th of Feb, 2015. It's coming soon! I wish my company was on the right side here, but it seems they're not.

I wish I could change that, but it seems I can't.

Does anyone have any ideas? Should I be calling for boycott? Should I take to Twitter? Will that help?

I am also a little scared of being too effective. I LIKE my job, and Intel is good to me as an employee. I just wish we wouldn't be saying things are are demonstratively wrong, to ourselves and to the world.

For more information, please read up. This is IMPORTANT folks. The internet is our main communication channel now."

+ - The Evolution of "The Nerd"->

Submitted by kube00
kube00 (1768000) writes "Scott from The Gamers Lounge writes "Growing up, if I was called a nerd, it was an insult that had to be refuted. I always needed a quick retort to save face, which still helped me to appear cool with the ladies. The truth was different. I spent my evenings at a friend’s house drawing maps of Zelda dungeons, searching the couch for quarters that I could spend at the arcade, and trying to beat Mike Tyson into submission. I never knew at the time that as a nerd I would get the last laugh, and that I would get revenge in a way I could never imagine"
Link to Original Source

+ - m0n0wall project shut down->

Submitted by jrronimo
jrronimo (978486) writes "Those of us in the market for an open source router operating system have one less option: As of 15 February 2015, Manuel Kasper has officially ended the m0n0wall project.

In the ending announcement he states "...the world keeps turning, and while m0n0wall has made an effort to keep up, there are now better solutions available and under active development.

Therefore, today I announce that the m0n0wall project has officially ended. No development will be done anymore, and there will be no further releases." He goes on to say that "m0n0wall has served as the seed for several other well known open source projects, like pfSense, FreeNAS and AskoziaPBX. The newest offspring, OPNsense (, aims to continue the open source spirit of m0n0wall while updating the technology to be ready for the future. In my view, it is the perfect way to bring the m0n0wall idea into 2015, and I encourage all current m0n0wall users to check out OPNsense and contribute if they can."

Thanks for all of your hard work Manuel!"

Link to Original Source

+ - AT&T To Match Google Fiber in Kansas City, Charge More If You Want Privacy-> 1

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "When Google Fiber started bringing gigabit internet to cities around the U.S., we wondered how the incumbent carriers would respond. Now we know: AT&T has announced they will match Google Fiber's gigabit offerings in Kansas City. Of course, there are some caveats. First, AT&T's rollout may stop as it fights the Obama administration over net neutrality. Not that it would be a nationwide rollout anyway: "AT&T does not plan to offer the ultra-fast Internet lines to every home in the market. Rather, he said the company would calculate where demand is strongest and the investment in stringing new cables promised a decent return."

There are also some interesting pricing concerns. The company plans to charge $70/month for gigabit service, but that's a subsidized price. Subsidized by what, you ask? Your privacy. AT&T says if you want to opt out of letting them track your browsing history, you'll have to pay $29 more per month. They say your information is used to serve targeted advertising, and includes any links you follow and search terms you enter."

Link to Original Source

Parts that positively cannot be assembled in improper order will be.