Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive


Forgot your password?

Slashdot videos: Now with more Slashdot!

  • View

  • Discuss

  • Share

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).


+ - Aaron Swartz and MIT: The inside story->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "The Boston Globe has reviewed over 7,000 pages of documents from Aaron Swartz's court case, shedding light on the activities that got in trouble and how MIT handled his case. Quoting: 'Most vividly, the e-mails underscore the dissonant instincts the university grappled with. There was the eagerness of some MIT employees to help investigators and prosecutors with the case, and then there was, by contrast, the glacial pace of the institution’s early reaction to the intruder’s provocation. MIT, for example, knew for 2½ months which campus building the downloader had operated out of before anyone searched it for him or his laptop — even as the university told JSTOR they had no way to identify the interloper.

And once Swartz was unmasked, the ambivalence continued. MIT never encouraged Swartz’s prosecution, and once told his prosecutor they had no interest in jail time. However, e-mails illustrate how MIT energetically assisted authorities in capturing him and gathering evidence — even prodding JSTOR to get answers for prosecutors more quickly — before a subpoena had been issued. ... But a number of JSTOR’s internal e-mails show a much angrier face in the months that Swartz eluded capture, with employees sharing frustration about MIT’s “rather tepid level of concern.” JSTOR officials repeatedly raised the prospect, among themselves, of going to the police, e-mails show."

Link to Original Source

Comment: I have lived without a land-line for years but (Score 1) 1

by Laconique (#46613197) Attached to: WSJ: Prepare to hang up the phone - forever
I have friends who live alone and for safety reasons they say they keep a land-line. Many offices won't switch to Internet phones even, let alone all cell phones. If my safety or my job depended on it, I would likely have one too. I have it easy enough that a cell phone is all I need

+ - WSJ: Prepare to hang up the phone - forever-> 1

Submitted by retroworks
retroworks (652802) writes "Telecom giants AT&T and Verizon Communications are lobbying states, one by one, to hang up the plain, old telephone system, what the industry now calls POTS--the copper-wired landline phone system whose reliability and reach made the U.S. a communications powerhouse for more than 100 years. Is landline obsolete, and should be immune from grandparents era social protection?"
Link to Original Source

Comment: Re: Guaranteed... (Score 1) 51

It's been a painfully helpful thing, like an ice bath for a fever (maybe?) to See my beloved Android system (software and hardware) lose its aura that you can trust stuff because it's free and open source. I still prefer it to alternatives. But I confess that I was naive and went along with the worship of open source. I just don't think I control my phone anymore

Comment: They should have lowered the price (Score 1) 276

by Laconique (#46479471) Attached to: Amazon Hikes Prime Membership Fee
I have been a prime member since the start and I would pay even more than that for it. However, I think they are making a mistake by thinking about cases like mine. The increase in cost of shipping is a terrible excuse. No doubt that the cost has gone up but I suspect the prime membership cannot even come close to breaking even. Those who do NOT sign up for it are the ones who are making that exact calculation. I did too at first because I used to shop for books and other stuff almost on most major sites. Once you have prime, you just keep using Amazon because of free and FAST shipping. Sure other sites have sometimes free shipping but the cheapest and slowest ones. Everyone who has prime in my experience buys more from Amazon. The more you buy the more they "lose" on shipping but they win in the end. I would have lowered it to get more people hooked...

Comment: The ones I would love to ditch but can't (Score 1) 531

by Laconique (#46381429) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What Software Can You Not Live Without?
In order of importance for my work 1. Adobe Acrobat Pro (repeat the above line eight more times) 10. MS Word I can almost do all MS Word stuff with freeware alternatives, but almost. Acrobat alternatives? For pdf power users there is no alternative. None. I don't do graphics much but I can see that GIMP is no photoshop. It *seems* to me that Acrobat vs alternatives' gap is even bigger. But may just be because I don't do graphic works. MS Word

Comment: "no one forced you to" (Score 1) 259

by Laconique (#45624661) Attached to: Elsevier Going After Authors Sharing Their Own Papers
I see this perspective - 'no one forced you to publish with them' etc - voiced in some comments here. I appreciate that many of us need such fantasies of individual sovereignty to even get out of bed in the morning, this doesn't apply to academia. Most people have no choice practically of where the top journals in their fields are. They could theoretically publish elsewhere, only not to be read the very few peers there are to begin with, or lose a chance at tenure, placement, etc.

Comment: 'Things' haven't changed all that much (Score 1) 136

by Laconique (#45448047) Attached to: Your Phone Number Is Going To Get a Reputation Score
It's true that some carriers, in some countries allow you to port your number (though that's hardly everywhere, making the 'worldwide claim of this database the same be just an empty claim). So some 'things' have changed, just a little. But, most importantly, 'Things' such as phone numbers, are still, to my knowledge, incapable of autonomous intentionality and even of having enough singular qualities for this company's mission to make any sense. A phone number neither intends to do good or evil, nor does it have material components or specs to fail to carry out the user's intention and deserve a bad reputation. Without these, the concept of reputation is simply inapplicable. Until some number phone numbers started willingly or typically call the wrong place or person by intentional design or by poor design, this company shouldn't bother calling me. I suspect they should put their own number first on their own list of numbers being associated with *people* misusing numbers

Comment: 'good' news (Score 1) 114

by Laconique (#45385719) Attached to: Square Is Discontinuing Monthly Pricing On February 1, 2014
For our business, we have been using Square only because of that pricing model. Their customer service is one of the worst I have ever encountered (they think Twitter is a good place for businesses to discuss credit card processing publicly), they make a lot of decisions that are cute but either useless or in fact make things worse and less productive. I have been so frustrated with them for months but couldn't go elsewhere because of the rates. This change sucks but at least now I can walk away without any problems.

It is masked but always present. I don't know who built to it. It came before the first kernel.