Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!


Forgot your password?
Slashdot Deals: Deal of the Day - Pay What You Want for the Learn to Code Bundle, includes AngularJS, Python, HTML5, Ruby, and more. ×

Submission + - Reddit to shut down in opposition to SOPA (reddit.com) 3

symbolset writes: Under the banner "Stopped they must be; on this all depends", Reddit carries this notice today. On January 19th from 8AM to 8PM EST Reddit, one of the more popular sites on the Internet, will replace their normal content with a simple message in opposition of the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and Protect IP Act (PIPA) currently in consideration for passage in the US Congress. Many technology professionals believe these bills to be a threat to the Internet as we know it. Slashdot has been covering this ongoing story.

Submission + - CubeSpawn - OpenSource Manufacturing at Home (cubespawn.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Ever wanted to mass produce little series of industrial grade stuff at home? Wanted to create a run of SMD soldered electronic devices at home? Sell a hundred? Or more? Want to drill your comuter cases yourself? Go full DIY? Along with hundreds of thousands of others? Soon you may...

Open Source Hardware steps into fully automated fabrication at home.

By using simple building blocks James Jones will build a toolchain of small scale industrial machines, that anyone could have in his basement. The first building block will reproduce itself several times. And then you have the base for the next step. Equip it with tools, Arduino type microcontrollers, get some open source software from the web, install it and there you go. Automatic SMD soldering, CNC drilling and so much more may soon happen in your basement. Check out the main website and also the project over at Kickstart


Submission + - 100% Free software compatible PC launches (open-pc.com) 1

crimperman writes: The Open-PC project has announced that it's first PC is now available for 359 Euro. They claim the mini-ITX desktop machine is energy efficient, consumer ready, easy to upgrade and — significantly — uses only hardware which has free software drivers available. As you'd expect it comes with GNU/Linux which is running KDE (a 10 Euro donation to the KDE project in included in the price). Interestingly all the key decisions on design, pricing etc. have been made by the "community" via online polls. The spec of the machine is pretty reasonable for the price : Atom 1.6GHz Dual-Core Processor, 3GB RAM, 160GB HDD, Intel 950 Graphics

Submission + - Open-Source Javascript Flash Player (HTML5/SVG) (paulirish.com) 1

gbutler69 writes: Wow! Someone has gone and done it. Created a Flash Player written in Javascript targetting SVG/HTML5 capable browsers. It's not a complete implementation yet, but, it shows some real promise. Of course, there is the ever-famous vector "Hello World!" called Tiger. This really has promise. How long before HTML5/SVG next-generation browsers like Chrome, Firefox, Opera, Safari, Epiphany, and other Web-Kit based browsers completely supplant Flash and Silverlight/Moonlight?

Submission + - Dealing with moving into open-space offices?

KlaymenDK writes: The team of developers I'm part of will soon be moving into our country headquarters from a branch office. The branch office consists of 2-3 person offices, with more space for managers and meeting rooms. The headquarters, on the other hand, was rebuilt some years ago into the then-fashionable "open-space" format; apart from the print rooms there are now only a few huge 60-80 person open-space offices; even the hallways were included so people must walk right between the tables (talking to one another or into cell phones) and there are no meeting rooms or manager's offices. Of course we have our share of colleagues who are plain noise-makers, or who just happen to have "fog horn" or "buzz saw" voices (poor souls). My awesome boss and team leader have been unable to secure any kind of "quiet space" for us developers.

So I ask: How can we, as developers, best deal with this? (I don't want to quit over it, so that's one suggestion you can skip). I could work from home several days a week, but I really don't have room for a permanent home office in my flat. I am looking into noise cancelling headphones/earbuds (I don't want to drown out noise with more noise (music), I would "just" like a bit of quiet) and even considering DIY egg-carton cubicle partitions. I am also trying to locate some of the studies and reports that debunk open-space offices (convincing management is a reeeaaal long shot, but I have to try turning every stone) so if you know where to find 'em, links please. I fear I'll be the guy who jumps up twenty times a day and shouts SHUT THE HELL UP EVERYONE! I clearly need some help before that actually happens!

Submission + - A Palm T|X Replacement? (wordpress.com) 1

rm42 writes: "I guess that what I would love to have is a small portable device, that wouldn't require waiting for it to boot, that gave me access to my data without requiring a cellular data plan, and that was able to give me audible reminders. Does such a thing exist outside of Palm and Windows CE?"

Losing My Software Rights? 440

vintagepc writes "Having written a piece of software as part of my research employment, I now face (and will later face again, with other software I've developed), the issue of intellectual property rights. The legal department stated that if I was paid by the University to produce the software, the University would own all rights to it. This is supposedly black and white, not a gray area. However, I was hired as a research student, not directly by the University, and also via a research award (NSERC). Furthermore, it turns out that faculty members here, in fact, retain their intellectual rights to any software they write. At this point, I can still back out, since I have not explicitly agreed to the conditions, but this decision must be made soon. So, I turn to the Slashdot community to ask: Are they allowed to completely strip my rights to the software? If anyone has had any similar experiences, then what was the outcome? Additionally, is this a normal action, or do I have some maneuvering room?"

Submission + - A big step for a man, a small step for mankind (slashdot.org)

KlaymenDK writes: "Hello my fellow privacy-conscious slashdotters!

This last decade or so, I have strived to maintain my privacy. I have uninstalled Windows, told my friends "sorry" when they wanted me to be on Facebook, had a fight with my brother when he wanted to move the family email hosting to GMail, and generally held back on my personal information online. But since, amongst all of my friends, I am the ONLY one doing this, it may well be that there is no point in all of this and my battle is lost already.

Worse, if in spite of this I'm still not "on" any of these services, I'm really putting myself out of the loop (and poking myself in the eye everytime I use Squirrelmail instead of GMail). It is starting to look like self-flagellation, and I can't particularly enjoy it if I don't see at least some advantage to it. Indeed, it is a common enough occurrence that my wife or friends strike up conversations based on something from their Facebook "wall" (whatever that is) that it has become clear to me just how out of the loop I really am.

Becoming ever more unconnected with my friends (be it in a human or online way) is ultimately harming my social relations — and since I have a slashdot account you know they can't be that good to begin with...

What's my point? I am seriously considering throwing in the towel (hoping I won't be doing any impromptu space travelling) and signing up for GMail, Facebook, the lot (and then using Tor a lot more than I already am). My point is, if "they" have my soul already, I might as well reap the benefits of this newfangled, privacy-less, ajax-2.0 world. It doesn't really matter if it was me or my friends selling me out. Or does it?

I'd love to hear your thoughts on this matter. How many Windows-eschewing users are NOT also eschewing the social networking services and all the other 2.0 supersites with their dubious end-user license agreements?"


Dirac 1.0.0 Released 127

dylan_- writes "According to their website, 'Dirac is an advanced royalty-free video compression format designed for a wide range of uses, from delivering low-resolution web content to broadcasting HD and beyond, to near-lossless studio editing.' Now a stable version of the dirac-research codebase, Dirac 1.0.0, has been released. The BBC have already successfully used the new codec during the Beijing Olympics and are looking to push it to more general use throughout the organisation. The latest version of VLC (the recently released 0.9.2) has support for Dirac using the Schroedinger library."

Submission + - Finding an OSS project that needs help?

KlaymenDK writes: My father has been thinking about retiring from the (lumbering behemoth of a) company he's been working at, and I've teased him by saying that he can always find an open source project that needs his kind of skills.
A few days ago he actually did retire (well, was retired) but he's got plenty of energy left in him, and also more than 35 years of IT experience. So how, specifically, would one go about determining the best project to dedicate one's effort to?

He's a civil engineer, has done a ton of wizardy mainframe programming "back in the day", and has spent the last 15-20 years doing product presentations and educating the sales force about the technical side of the product lines. He's an avid promoter of "green" technology (that is, energy-efficiency and recyclability), and has never been afraid to go against management if he had a better plan. However, he's not entirely up to speed on the open source movement and free operating systems, though I do my best to educate him.

I'm sure he would make an excellent spokesperson for the OpenMoko, except they don't have any openings. So where else could you suggest, where would you start looking?
The Internet

Submission + - Voting For A Tech Savvy Prez? (fastsilicon.com) 1

mrneutron2003 writes: "Here in the states Presidential primaries are just around the corner, and TechCrunch founder Michael Arrington has decided to get involved in the process with a tech-savvy twist. TechCrunch has set up a new sub-domain, primaries.techcrunch.com , for the sole purpose of polling it's huge userbase for the candidate they believe understands and represents them on many key technology based issues.

At the site you can vote for your candidate as you see him or her, based on their stands on such important issues as Net Neutrality, Immigration and H1B Visas ,Taxes & Internet Taxes, Technology Education, The Digital Divide, Identity Theft The Upcoming Mobile Spectrum Auction, China, Intellectual Property Rights and Renewable Energy. Head over and let your voice be heard .

"For the love of phlegm...a stupid wall of death rays. How tacky can ya get?" - Post Brothers comics