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Happy Ada Lovelace Day ( 19

Today is Ada Lovelace Day, a time to celebrate the achievements of women in STEM fields. Several publications have put together lists of notable women to commemorate the day, such as tech pioneers, robotics experts, and historical engineers and scientists. Other are taking the opportunity to keep pushing against the elements of tech culture that remain sexist. From the BBC: On Ada Lovelace Day, four female engineers from around the world share their experiences of working in male-dominated professions. When Isis Anchalee's employer OneLogin asked her to take part in its recruitment campaign, she didn't rush to consult the selfie-loving Kardashian sisters for styling tips. "I was wearing very minimal make-up. I didn't brush my hair that day," she said. But the resulting image of Ms Anchalee created a social media storm when it appeared on Bart, the San Francisco metro. Lots of people questioned whether she really was an engineer. "It was not just limited to women — it resonates with every single person who doesn't fit with what the stereotype should look like," she said.

"My parents, my brother, my community, all were against me," said Sovita Dahal of her decision to pursue a career in technology. "I was going against traditional things. In my schooldays I was fascinated by electronic equipment like motors, transformers and LED lights. Later on this enthusiasm became my passion and ultimately my career," she said.

The Military

Antineutrino Detection Is About To Change the Game In Nuclear Verification ( 35

Lasrick writes: There may be a new option for the detection of illicit nuclear weapons programs worldwide: Antineutrino detection is an existing technology that, if political and diplomatic hurdles are overcome, could be put in place before the 10-year ban on Iranian enrichment R&D is lifted. Difficult to evade, antineutrino detection technology could allow the international community to reliably monitor a country's nuclear activities in real-time, potentially without setting foot in the country. Similar in cost and technological scale to the space-borne reconnaissance methods governments use for detection today, antineutrino detection could not only help identify undeclared nuclear reactors, but could monitor nuclear facilities and detonations throughout the Middle East and beyond.

Submission + - Wayland Ported To DragonFlyBSD (

An anonymous reader writes: Wayland 1.9 and the reference Weston compositor have been ported to DragonFlyBSD. Significant changes were made to get Wayland/Weston running and you must either already be running an X.Org Server or be using the Linux-ported Radeon and Intel kernel mode-setting drivers, plus jump through a few setup steps

Submission + - Social Media Abuse Stories to Shrivel Your Soul (

Lauren Weinstein writes: Recently in "Research Request: Seeking Facebook or Other 'Real Name' Identity Policy Abuse Stories", I requested that readers send me examples of social media abuses that have targeted themselves or persons they know, with an emphasis on "identity" issues such as those triggered by Facebook's "real name" policies.

These are continuing to pour in — and please keep sending them — but I wanted to provide a quick interim report.

Executive summary: Awful. Sickening. I knew some of these would be bad, but many are far worse than I had anticipated anyone being willing to send me. It seems very likely — though obviously I couldn't swear to this under oath — that these abuses have resulted in both suicides and homicides.

And if we as an industry don't get a handle on these issues, we ultimately risk draconian government crackdowns that will simply enable more government censorship and create even more problems.

Submission + - Ask Slashdot: Is there space for open hardware in networking?

beda writes: Open hardware has got much attention with the advent of Raspberry Pi, Arduino and their respective clones. But most of the devices are focused either on tinkerers (Arduino) or most notably multimedia (Raspberry Pi). However, there is not much happening in other areas such as home routers where openness might help improve security and drive progress. Our company (non-profit) is trying to change this with Turris Omnia but we still wander if there is in fact demand for such devices. Is the market large enough and the area cool enough? Are there enough people who would value open hardware running open software even with a higher price tag? Any feedback would be most valued.

Video DevOps: Threat or Menace? (Video) 32

The title above is a joke. Mostly. We've heard so much about DevOps -- good, bad, and indifferent -- from so many people who contradict each other, that we turned to Alan Zeichick, one of the world's most experienced IT analysts, to tell us what DevOps is and isn't, how it can help get work done (and done right), how it can hinder progress, and how to make sure DevOps is a help, not a hindrance, if you or your employers decide to implement DevOps yourselves at some point.
Open Source

3 Open Source Projects For Modern COBOL Development ( 55

An anonymous reader writes: While Grace Hopper's contributions to computing are remembered, celebrated, and built upon by her successors, COBOL itself is often dismissed as a relic of earlier era of computing. To a certain extent, that is true. Most of the COBOL being written today is for maintaining legacy code, not starting new projects. However, the language is still being updated, with COBOL 2014 being the most recent standard for the language, and there are still plenty of opportunities to apply for jobs that require COBOL experience. In an article on, Joshua Allen Holm highlights three open source projects that are keeping the language alive.
The Military

DARPA's ICARUS Program To Develop Self-Destructing Air Delivery Vehicles ( 54

Zothecula contributes this excerpt from Gizmag that illustrates the latest chapter in the long history of denying equipment of military technology to the makers' adversaries: Two years ago, DARPA started developing self-destructing electronics as a way to prevent advanced military gear falling into the wrong hands. Now the agency is expanding on the idea with its Inbound, Controlled, Air-Releasable, Unrecoverable Systems (ICARUS) program, which is tasked with developing small, unmanned, single-use, unpowered air vehicles that can can be dropped from an aircraft to deliver supplies to isolated locations in the event of disasters, then evaporate into thin air once their job is done.

German Publisher Axel Springer Bans Adblocking Users From Bild Website ( 307

An anonymous reader writes: Major European publishing house Axel Springer has instituted countermeasures against users who employ adblocking software on its Bild news outlet, which represents a daily publication with a print circulation of 2.5 million. The website now presents readers with a request to either turn off the adblocking or pay a €2.99 monthly subscription fee. In a statement the company insists that online journalism must be funded by one of the 'two known revenue pillars' — advertising or sales.

Treat Computer Science As a Science: It's the Law 153

theodp writes: Last week, President Obama signed into law H.R. 1020, the STEM Education Act of 2015, which expands the definition of STEM to include computer science for the purposes of carrying out education activities at the NSF, DOE, NASA, NOAA, NIST, and the EPA. The Bill was introduced by Rep. Lamar Smith (R-TX) and Rep. Elizabeth Etsy (D-CT). Smith's February press release linked to letters of support from tech billionaire-backed (whose leadership includes Microsoft President Brad Smith), and the Microsoft-backed STEM Education Coalition (whose leadership includes Microsoft Director of Education Policy Allyson Knox).

"E-mailable" House Snaps Together Without Nails ( 104

MikeChino writes: Your next house could snap together like a jigsaw puzzle without the use of any power tools. Clemson University students designed and built Indigo Pine, a carbon-neutral house that exists largely as a set of digital files that can be e-mailed to a wood shop anywhere in the world, CNC cut, and then assembled on-site in a matter of days. “Indigo Pine has global application,” says the Clemson team. “Because the house exists largely as a set of digital files, the plans can be sent anywhere in the world, constructed using local materials, adapted to the site, and influenced by local culture.”

Australians Set To Pay 50% More For Apps After Apple Price Spike ( 83

SlappingOysters writes: Within 36-hours the price of Apple apps is set to increase in Australia, Sweden and Indonesia. It will bring the price of buying an app out of alignment with the value of the Australian dollar, and leave the country's Apple fans paying 50% more for their iOS software than their American counterparts. It's unfortunate timing, with the recent launch of the iPhone 6s and the upcoming fourth generation of Apple TV.

Australian ISPs Not Ready For Mandatory Data Retention ( 75 writes: October 13 marks the day Australian ISPs are required by law to track all web site visits and emails of their users, but according to an article on the Australian Broadcasting Corporation's news site the majority of ISPs are not ready to begin mandatory data retention. The article's author, Will Ockenden, had previously released his own metadata to readers in an experiment to see how effectively this kind of data reveals personal habits of online users. The majority of Australians appear unconcerned with this level of scrutiny of their lives, given the minimal reaction to this and proposed tougher legislation designed to deal with the threats of crime and terrorism.

Fenno-German 'Sea Lion' Telecom Cable Laying Begins ( 39

jones_supa writes: A couple of years ago, details began to unfold of a government-backed high capacity data cable between Germany and Finland, which would be routed through the Baltic Sea. The cable has now been nicknamed "Sea Lion," and the work started Monday in Santahamina coastal area, outside Helsinki. The cable was built by Alcatel Lucent and is operated by the Finnish firm Cinia Group. The Finnish government, along with the banking and insurance sector, have together invested €100M into the project. That investment is expected to pay for itself many times over once the business sector gets a boost from the new telecom jump. The new cable also makes Finland independent of the Øresund Bridge, through which all of the country's Internet traffic is currently routed, via Denmark and Sweden. Eventually the new link can reach Asia as well, via the Northeast Passage shipping route.

The opossum is a very sophisticated animal. It doesn't even get up until 5 or 6 PM.