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Google

Java Creator James Gosling Hired At Google 229

jfruhlinger writes "Some months after leaving Oracle in a huff, father of Java James Gosling has joined Google. It's not clear what his job responsibilities will be there, but given some of his past statements about Google projects — that Android has no adult supervision, for instance — it will be interesting to see what develops."
Hardware Hacking

$100 Linux Wall-Wart Now Available 464

nerdyH sends us to LinuxDevices for a description of a tiny Linux device called the Marvell SheevaPlug. "A $100 Linux wall wart could do to servers what netbooks did to notebooks. With the Marvell SheevaPlug, you get a completely open (hardware and software) Linux server resembling a typical wall-wart power adapter, but running Linux on a 1.2GHz CPU, with 512MB of RAM, and 512MB of Flash. I/O includes USB 2.0, gigabit Ethernet, while expansion is provided via an SDIO slot. The power draw is a nightlight-like 5 Watts. Marvell says it plans to give Linux developers everything they need to deliver 'disruptive' services on the device." The article links four products built on the SheevaPlug, none of them shipping quite yet. The development kit is available from Marvell.
The Courts

You Are Not a Lawyer 693

Paul Ohm is starting a new "very occasional" feature on the Freedom To Tinker blog called You Are Not a Lawyer — "In this series, I will try to disabuse computer scientists and other technically minded people of some commonly held misconceptions about the law (and the legal system)." In the first installment, Ohm walks through the reasons why many techies' faith in the presence of "reasonable doubt" is so misplaced. "When techies think about criminal law, and in particular crimes committed online, they tend to fixate on [the 'beyond a reasonable doubt'] legal standard, dreaming up ways people can use technology to inject doubt into the evidence to avoid being convicted. I can't count how many conversations I have had with techies about things like the 'open wireless access point defense,' the 'trojaned computer defense,' the 'NAT-ted firewall defense,' and the 'dynamic IP address defense.' ... People who place stock in these theories and tools are neglecting an important drawback. There are another set of legal standards — the legal standards governing search and seizure — you should worry about long before you ever get to 'beyond a reasonable doubt.'"
Image

Home Theatre System Using Laptops Screenshot-sm 37

Ben Falkon writes "This article takes a look at the possibility of turning a set of laptops into a home theater system. Considering Nelson Chang and the team at HP have had success with running projector party, I don't see why this is not possible. The only problem that I can see is that laptop speakers tend to be weak — then again, modern laptops are gradually being fitted with powerful speakers in these days, so that does not bother me much. A comprehensive discussion follows at the end of the article."
GUI

Windows 7 Beta Screenshots Leaked 587

Slatterz writes "Screenshots of what is said to be the next version of Microsoft's Windows operating system have been leaked onto the internet. The ThinkNext.net blog posted a range of screenshots over the weekend which it said represents Windows 7. Overall, the screenshots show a distinctly Vista-like interface, but there is still plenty of time for tweaks and changes to take place."

US Amazon.com Website Down For Over 1 Hour 228

CorporalKlinger writes "CNET News is reporting that Amazon's US website, Amazon.com, has been unreachable since 10:30 AM PDT today. As of posting, visiting www.amazon.com produces an 'Http/1.1 Service Unavailable' message. According to CNET, "Based on last quarter's revenue of $4.13 billion, a full-scale global outage would cost Amazon more than $31,000 per minute on average." Some of Amazon's international websites still appear to be working, and some pages on the US Amazon.com site load if accessed using HTTPS instead of HTTP."
GNU is Not Unix

3D Self-Replicating Printer to be Released Under GNU License 313

Rob O'Neill writes "A Kiwi open source developer is working on a self-replicating 3D printer, RepRap, to be made available under the GNU license. 'The 3D printer works by building components up in layers of plastic, mainly polylactic acid (PLA), which is a bio-degradable polymer made from lactic acid. The technology already exists, but commercial machines are very expensive. They also can't copy themselves, and they can't be manipulated by users, says Vik Olliver. RepRap has a different idea. The team, which is spread over New Zealand, the UK and the US, develops and gives away the designs for its much cheaper machine, which also has self-copying capabilities. It wants to make the machine available to anybody — including small communities in the developing world, as well as people in the developed world, says Olliver. Accordingly, the RepRap machine is distributed, at no cost, under the GNU (General Public License).'"
The Internet

Internet Pranks in Schools 404

Ferante125 writes "An interesting article about online pranks by students and teachers' responses to them. There are some interesting stats that sounded a little hard to believe. My immature side finds it funny and my more mature side is interested in the legal aspects." For the most part it seems like this article thinks pranks are basically just name calling and flaming on websites.
Programming

The Life of a Software Engineer 519

Jonathan Wise writes to share with us an interesting bit of prose describing life as a software engineer. "I am, in the States, known as a Software Engineer. In Canada we're not allowed to call ourselves engineers, although the discipline is no less rigorous than any other kind of engineering. But perhaps its for the best, because 'engineering' describes only a part of what I do. A software developer must be part writer and poet, part salesperson and public speaker, part artist and designer, and always equal parts logic and empathy."
Software

Promoting FOSS to People Who Don't Care 432

MarcoF brings us his take on how to cultivate interest in open-source software to casual users who aren't interested in or necessarily aware of its existence. Many people simply have trouble leaving their comfort zone of older proprietary software; what's the best way to get them to look at an open-source alternative? "Since most people would rather die than write or study software source code, it is actually counterproductive to promote software 'because you can modify it yourself and be part of its community'. Look for really practical advantages which can be enjoyed every day by the person you want to convince. Start from the actual deep passions, beliefs, interests and practical needs of the people in front of you and go backwards from there, delaying the apparition of terms like 'source code', 'the four software freedoms', GPL, Gnu, Linux, etc."

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