Follow Slashdot blog updates by subscribing to our blog RSS feed


Forgot your password?
Take advantage of Black Friday with 15% off sitewide with coupon code "BLACKFRIDAY" on Slashdot Deals (some exclusions apply)". ×

Submission + - Physicists claim detection of dark matter (

grouchomarxist writes: Physicists at the University of Michigan claim that they have made the first detection of dark matter. 'Dark matter, whose composition is still a mystery, doesn't emit or absorb light, so astronomers can't see it directly with telescopes. They deduce that it exists based on how its gravity affects visible matter. Scientists estimate that dark matter makes up more than 80 percent of the universe. To "see" the dark matter component of the filament that connects the clusters Abell 222 and 223, Dietrich and his colleagues took advantage of a phenomenon called gravitational lensing. They were able to determine the extent to which the supercluster distorted galaxies, and with that information, they could plot the gravitational field and the mass of the Abell 222 and 223 clusters. "It looks like there's a bridge that shows that there is additional mass beyond what the clusters contain, the clusters alone cannot explain this additional mass," Dietrich said.' Article in nature is here.

Submission + - Hackers Dump Millions of Records of CIA, Banks, Politicians (

hypnosec writes: TeamGhostShell, a team linked with the infamous group Anonymous, is claiming that they have hacked some major US institutions including the likes of CIA, major banking institutions, accounts of politicians and has posted those details online. The dumps comprising of millions of accounts has been let loose on the web by the hacking collective. The motivation behind the hack, the group claims, is to protest against banks, politicians and the hackers who have been captured by law enforcement agencies.

Submission + - Man With World's Deepest Voice Hits Notes That Only Elephants Can Hear

An anonymous reader writes: The man who holds the Guinness record for the world's lowest voice can hit notes so low that only animals as big as elephants are able to hear them. American singer Tim Storms who also has the world's widest vocal range can reach notes as low as G-7 (0.189Hz),an incredible eight octaves below the lowest G on the piano.
Your Rights Online

Submission + - Three years in jail for receiving an image of fisting? 1

wwwrench writes: "In the UK, it may be illegal to receive an emailed image of legal and consensual sex. The Crown Prosecutation Service is currently trying a man for receiving an image of two people fisting. Under the U.K.'s 2008 obsenity law it is illegal to view a pornographic image of extreme sex, even if the image depicts a legal act. Questions have been raised about the motives for the case, as the defendent is openly gay, and used to prosecute corrupt police officers. Although the case has been virtually ignored by the media, this is also the first trail in the U.K. where one of the lawyers has been allowed to tweet during the trial (under the hashtag #porntrial).""

Submission + - Ask Slashdot: Understanding SNES 3

An anonymous reader writes: As a product of the 90s I grew up loving the classics that kids today know about from Wikipedia and pop-culture references. Games like Super Bomberman, Zelda: A Link to the Past, Donkey Kong Country I and III (II was a sellout, come on) are the foundations of my childhood memories. Now, though, as a fourth-year electrical engineering major I find myself increasingly impressed by the level of technical difficulty embedded in that 16-bit console. I am trying, now, to find a resource that will take me through the technical design of the SNES (memory layout, processor information, cartridge pin layouts/documentation) to get a better understanding of what I naively enjoyed 15 some years ago. I am reaching out to the vast resources available from the minds of the Slashdot community. Any guide/blog series that you know of that walks through some of the technical aspects of the, preferably, SNES (alternatively, NES/Nintendo 64) console would be much appreciated.

Submission + - Anonymous Threatens To Expose Australian ISPs Over Data Retention (

lukehopewell1 writes: "The Australian government is currently discussing a plan that would force local internet service providers (ISPs) to collect and retain user browsing data for up to two years in a new National Security inquiry.

This has ruffled the collective feathers of Anonymous, who have formed Operation Australia to show just how insecure data actually is when retained by governments.

The group started by hacking 10 state government websites and have now threatened to hack a local ISP if the inquiry doesn't rule out data retention."

United States

Submission + - The Nation is Losing its Toolbox 2

Hugh Pickens writes writes: "Louis Uchitelle writes that in Aisle 34 of Home Depot is precut vinyl flooring, the glue already in place, in Aisle 26 are prefab windows, and if you don’t want to be your own handyman, head to Aisle 23 or Aisle 35, where a help desk will arrange for an installer as mastering tools and working with one’s hands recede as American cultural values. "At a time when the American factory seems to be a shrinking presence, and when good manufacturing jobs have vanished, perhaps never to return, there is something deeply troubling about this dilution of American craftsmanship," writes Uchitelle. "Craftsmanship is, if not a birthright, then a vital ingredient of the American self-image as a can-do, inventive, we-can-make-anything people." Mass layoffs and plant closings have drawn plenty of headlines and public debate over the years, and they still occasionally do. But the damage to skill and craftsmanship — what’s needed to build a complex airliner or a tractor, or for a worker to move up from assembler to machinist to supervisor — has gone largely unnoticed. “In an earlier generation, we lost our connection to the land, and now we are losing our connection to the machinery we depend on,” says Michael Hout. “People who work with their hands are doing things today that we call service jobs, in restaurants and laundries, or in medical technology and the like.” The damage to American craftsmanship seems to parallel the precipitous slide in manufacturing employment. and manufacturing’s shrinking presence helps explain the decline in craftsmanship, if only because many of the nation’s assembly line workers were skilled in craft work. “Young people grow up without developing the skills to fix things around the house,” says Richard T. Curtin. “They know about computers, of course, but they don’t know how to build them.”"

Submission + - Brazil is Turning Inmates into Power Plants

derekmead writes: Since the oil shocks of the ‘70s, Brazil has been home to a carnival of renewable energy initiatives that now generate a whopping 85 percent of the country’s power. At Santa Rita do Sapucaí prison, inmates are contributing to the effort by riding stationary bikes which charge batteries that fuel lights at a nearby park that previously didn’t have electricity. That makes the park safer and shaves a little off the city’s carbon footprint, while giving the inmates a chance to get buff – and reduce their sentences.

City judge José Henrique Mallmann was apparently inspired by other prisons that offer prisoners incentives for riding bikes. At Phoenix, Ariz.’s Tent City Jail, female prisoners who want to watch television are required to pedal stationary bikes that power TVs. The technology has been in use at some fitness clubs for years, and is gaining traction for use in everyday life by cycling enthusiasts.

Submission + - 100,000 Chinese Android users owned by trojan (

mask.of.sanity writes: A hundred thousand Chinese Android users have been infected with a trojan that is circulating over at least nine app stores.

The trojan bypassed China Mobile's purchasing workflow to download paid apps and video. It did this by stealing SMS codes, and even uploading CAPTCHAs to a remote server for manual review.


Submission + - It's Full of Eyes: Drones at Home Coming Soon (

ericjones12398 writes: "When the boys came home from World War II, the US changed forever. An economic boom, a baby boom, new technology, new ideas, new ways of looking at the world and our place in it. Something similar is about to happen, once the boys come back from Afghanistan... "boys" meaning Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), known by most of us as drones.
Drones aren't likely to inspire the next baby boom, but they're a perfect example of a classic route of technological innovation — namely, from the research labs and hobbyists to the military and thence to commercial and mainstream usage (a development path similar to some other quirky experiments over the years, such as the Internet). Already, the drone market is worth nearly $6 billion, and expected to double over the next ten years."


Submission + - Cat parasite may increase risk of suicide in humans 1

An anonymous reader writes: Researchers at the University of Maryland analyzing meticulous data collected by Danish authorities have identified a positive correlation between suicides among women with infection with the fairly common parasite T. gondii. Carriers were 53 percent more likely to commit suicide in a sample of 45,000 Danish women monitored for over a decade (researchers believe that the same correlation likely exists for men). Increased susceptibility to schizophrenia and bipolar disorder was also discovered. The physiological mechanism has not been determined, although some speculation centers around changes to dopamine levels. Two intriguing aspects were noted: 1) human infection often (but not always) begins by exposure to cats carrying the parasite, for example, by changing an infected animal's litter; and 2) the parasite spreads itself by infecting the nervous system of rodents, causing them to become suicidally attracted to feline odors which will increase the likelihood of their hosts being eaten by cats, whose digestive tracts provide the preferred environment for parasite reproduction.

Submission + - Tevatron scientists announce their final results on the Higgs particle (

techtech writes: After more than 10 years of gathering and analyzing data produced by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Tevatron collider, scientists from the CDF and DZero experiments have found their strongest indication to date for the long-sought Higgs particle. The Tevatron results indicate that the Higgs particle, if it exists, has a mass between 115 and 135 GeV/c2, or about 130 times the mass of the proton.

Submission + - Samsung Samples First 16GB DDR4 Modules (

An anonymous reader writes: Samsung has begun sampling the industry’s first 16GB DDR4, registered dual inline memory modules (RDIMMs), designed for use in enterprise server systems. Employing new circuit architecture for computing systems, DDR4 technology boasts the highest performance among memory products available for today’s computing systems, which by next year will reach twice the current 1,600 megabits per second (Mbps) of DDR3 based modules. Also, by processing data far more efficiently at a mere 1.2 volts, Samsung’s DDR4 modules will reduce power consumption by approximately 40 percent compared to its predecessor DDR3 modules operating at 1.35V.

Submission + - Microsoft's Mad Men Blamed for $6.2B Write-Down

theodp writes: News that Microsoft will take a $6.2 billion write-down over aQuantive prompts a GeekWire commenter to wonder what exactly Steve Ballmer has to do to get fired. Microsoft paid huge a premium to buy into the hot online advertising sector in 2007 with its $6B purchase of aQuantive. So, how long before we hear about write-downs over Microsoft's $8.5B acquisition of Skype or its $1.2B acquisition of Yammer? On the bright side, at least Microsoft lucked out and never got the chance to pull the trigger on its $44.6B bid to buy Yahoo!

Without life, Biology itself would be impossible.