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Submission + - Author holds virtual book signing event (

An anonymous reader writes: One of the puzzles of ebooks is how to hold good old-fashioned book signings when you don’t have a printed product to pass back and forth. Sure, you could let an author Sharpie your Kindle, but that’s not really the same. (Not to mention you’ll run out of room fairly quickly.)
Sci-fi writer M. David Blake wants to help solve that problem, so he and MobileRead are holding a virtual ebook signing this week. Between now and Wednesday, July 14th, you can email him directly and he’ll send you a free personalized copy of his short story “We Don’t Plummet Out of the Sky Anymore” in both ePub and mobi formats. (Mobi is Kindle-ready.)
So how does virtual ebook signing work? A lot like traditional book signing, it turns out, at least in the beginning of the process. On MobileRead Blake explains that for each incoming request, he signs and numbers a blank page of paper, scans it in, converts it into a “unique, numbered flyleaf,” inserts it into the manuscript, and generates new copies to send to the reader.

Submission + - Adam Smith and password creation rules (

isoloisti writes: A study published this week at the ACM Symposium on Usable Privacy and Security compares password creation rules at 75 different sites and concludes that at many websites they are needlessly complex. The need for greater security shows no correlation with the complexity of password requirements. In fact some of the largest and most attacked sites, and those with trillions in assets allow relatively weak policies. Instead websites that must compete for traffic and revenue have less restrictive policies than those where the user has no choice. Retailers and .coms have the weakest policies, banks are next, while .gov and .edus have by far the most stringent.

“Our analysis suggests that strong-policy sites do not have greater security needs. Rather, it appears that they are better insulated from the consequences of imposing poor usability decisions on their users. For commercial retailers like Amazon, and advertising supported sites like Facebook, every login event is a revenue opportunity. At government sites and universities every login event is, at best, neutral, or, at worst, a cost. That simple difference in incentives turns out to be a better predictor of password policy than any security requirement. This in turn suggests that some of stronger policies are needlessly complex: they cause considerable inconvenience for negligible security improvement.”

Comment another dumb article. (Score 1) 532

Technology doesn't progress unless you can show an audience why they like it. 3D tech has to start somewhere. Looking at history, a lot of new technology started off appearing as a scam to some moderately intelligent douchebag, sold to an even less informed person.

Is slashdot about quantity or quality, i wonder.

Comment Reading comprehension fail (Score 1) 335

Unfortunately, I don't live in America, moving to America is a pain in the ass, and the face of telecommunications in Canada is very different. You need larger infrastructure for fewer people.

In addition, rather than snarking at me to "go start my own business," you'll note that my plan actually says that a business that is *already* at "good enough for now" to go do it. It requires piecemeal upgrading of components in-place already. The cash layout required to *start* at that level is prohibitive. Remember, the basic version of that Cisco rack is $90k, and you'd need a few of those around the country, if you wanted to compete. The companies already existing, however, are at that point right now, and so rather than investing in "Five year plans," they should go longer-term. It's a better investiture of capital than constantly needing to cycle out equipment that becomes obsolete, rather than has actually broken down due to age. They might even be able to keep ahead of the upgrade cycle and expand the network to low population density areas, rather than constantly trying to prop up their infrastructure in urban areas that's now being excessively taxed due to increased demand.

All in all, you'll have to forgive me for dismissing YOU for being a moron, and a likely troll.

Comment Re:Someone tagged this FOIA (Score 1) 776

Imagine now that there's a reasonable, level-headed, senior Al-Qaida leader that wants to open talks. Can he trust our government to not simply stuff him in a secret Cuban prison?

Not necessarily (and I don't blame him), but he can trust the UN, Pakistan, and a couple of other options that could open up legitimate talks.

How do we know that there aren't already detainees of this type??

Honestly, we don't, and that bothers me greatly. If those in "gitmo" get their fair trials, or are moved to more sane secure locations where torture doesn't occur, as Obama is trying to get done, then perhaps we'll hear of these poor souls, and talks will begin.

What if, though, we selected the option where we did the least amount of killing, and suffered the least amount of loss of life? Let them kill each other for a while? Why not?

I think it's beyond that point now. I think that if we pulled out now, that while they'd start fighting each other eventually, right now, we'd be the target. We've given the multiple terrorist organizations a single large threat to focus on, which has a way of unifying otherwise mortal enemies.

PC Games (Games)

Submission + - Unique insight into art of video game animation (

callingamerica writes: This Open Source forum thread began as a brief introduction to 'Apricot' — a new Open Source game by the Blender Team — but with the input of an experienced animator and ripostes by the Apricot team leader, the thread has developed into a fascinating look at the inside issues in game animation. The main argument of the thread is that while the Apricot game has a team of 6 skilled artists, integrators and developers, it does not have a trained animator and is therefore shooting itself in the foot as one forum member vehemently describes: "Artists are not animators. Most people would not ask their GP to practice plastic surgery on them, that requires a specialist who has much more training. Animators do go though a lot more training, in many fields of expertise." Read the thread to find out more.

Submission + - Adblock plus users "accused" of stealing ( 1

derrida writes: "There is this Firefox Add-on called Adblock plus that promises (and delivers) removal of "all those ads and banners on the internet that often take longer to download than everything else on the page". And there is also an ongoing debate whether this is stealing or not. Quoting two different views:
"Do you have a devise that automatically blocks all commercials on television.[?] There's a difference between ignoring commercials and blocking them." and
"My a** it is [stealing]! If your going to argue I'm taking something from you by not waiting for your ads to load, I'm going to argue you are "stealing" bandwidth.".
Going one step further some web developers released scripts that blocks Adblock (watch the oxynoron!).
How is really slashdot going to react if Adblock plus is heavily used by its readers?"

The Media

Submission + - Apple bullies journo into removing Leopard story

thefickler writes: Apple is up to its old tricks. This time it successfully harassed an Australian journalist and his publisher into deleting a positive article about OS X Leopard.

Yes, that's right, it was a positive article that talked about some of the good features coming up in Leopard.

Danny Gorog's crime is that he included screen shots of OS X Leopard in in his article. Apple's lawyers sent his publisher,, a nasty letter demanding that the article be removed on the basis that Leopard had "been distributed to developers under strict terms of confidentiality" and "copyright law specifically prohibits unauthorized distribution and displays of copyrighted works".

Space is to place as eternity is to time. -- Joseph Joubert