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Windows 8: a 'Christmas Gift For Someone You Hate' 740

zacharye writes "Microsoft is no stranger to criticism these days, and the company's new Windows 8 platform is once again the target of a scathing review from a high-profile user. Well-known Internet entrepreneur and MIT professor Philip Greenspun handed Windows 8 one of its most damning reviews yet earlier this week, calling the new operating system a 'Christmas gift for someone you hate.' Greenspun panned almost every aspect of Microsoft's new software, noting that Microsoft had four years to study Android and more than five to examine iOS, but still couldn't build a usable tablet experience..."

Developers Warned over OOXML Patent Risk 134

Tendraes brings us a story about legal experts who are warning that Microsoft's "covenant not to sue" over use of the OOXML specification is both ambiguous and untested. Developers wishing to make use of OOXML are unlikely to understand the complex legal language of the Open Specification Promise, and such a document - being neither a release nor a contract - has never been tested in court. From ZDNet Asia: "David Vaile, executive director of the Cyberspace Law and Policy Center at the University of New South Wales, said that Microsoft participants at a recent symposium on the issue found it challenging to explain how an ordinary person 'or even an ordinary lawyer' could easily determine which parts of the specification were covered. 'This lack of certainty would mean a cautious lawyer may be reluctant to advise any third party to rely on the promise without extensive and potentially quite expensive analysis, and even that could be inconclusive,' Vaile said. 'In turn, this could restrict its viability as a usable standard for less well-resourced users, including small developers and many public organizations.'"

Long-Term Wikipedia Vandalism Exposed 313

Daveydweeb writes, "The accuracy of Wikipedia, the free online encyclopedia, came into question again when a long-standing article on 'NPA personality theory' was confirmed to be a hoax. Not only had the article survived at Wikipedia for the better part of a year, but it had even been listed as a 'Good Article,' supposedly placing it in the top 0.2-0.3% of all Wikipedia articles — despite being almost entirely written by the creator of the theory himself."

Auto Install of IE 7 Delayed In Japan 201

filenavigator writes "Microsoft has delayed the automatic install of IE 7 in Japan. There's an an interesting response in one of the MSDN blogs. IT pros are saying that they have done this because business users asked it to be delayed. It seems to me many business users here in North America wanted it to be delayed as well, but were forced to scramble and deploy IE 7 blocking software. This looks like more proof that the IE 7 automatic push was more for marketing reasons, than security. If it were a security issue, than why wait on the Japanese push?" Does anyone know the 'technical' reason that the autoinstall was delayed?

How Much Does a Vista Upgrade Cost? 321

dptalia writes "Microsoft has rolled out its Vista upgrade program, where people can buy a qualifying PC with XP today and upgrade to Vista later for free. This article talks about what free really means. Some companies, such as Dell, charge $45 for converting to Vista Home from XP home. And then comes the question of actually trying to upgrade your computer... Is "free" really worth it?"

Numeric stability is probably not all that important when you're guessing.