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+ - The Internet Of Things Comes to Your Garden->

Submitted by Iddo Genuth
Iddo Genuth (903542) writes "Connected devices are becoming ubiquitous — a number of new companies are now offering WIFI and BT enabled devices that can let you control almost all aspects of your garden from your smartphone or tablet, save you money on water and allow you to monitor your plants health from a distance.

In the past few months we are seeing an expulsion of new companies and products belonging to the "Internet Of Things" (IOT) and this trend isn't skipping the garden. For years irrigation controllers were amongst the most hated non intuitive devices around but a new generation of small start-up companies such as Rachio, GreenIQ and GreenBox are looking to change that and create a completely new was of interaction with our garden which will be more wireless and more connected (with lots of smart sensors that will tell us what is going on with our plants before its too late)."

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+ - California Legalizes Bitcoin->

Submitted by jfruh
jfruh (300774) writes "California governor Jerry Brown has signed a law repealing Section 107 of California's Corporations Code, which prohibited companies or individuals from issuing money other than U.S. dollars. Before the law was repealed, not only bitcoin but everything from Amazon Coin to Starbucks Stars were techinically illegal, the law was generally not enforced."
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+ - Netflix Could Be Classified As a 'Cybersecurity Threat' Under New CISPA Rules

Submitted by Jason Koebler
Jason Koebler (3528235) writes "The cybersecurity bill making its way through the Senate right now is so broad that it could allow ISPs to classify Netflix as a "cyber threat," which would allow them to throttle the streaming service's delivery to customers.
"A 'threat,' according to the bill, is anything that makes information unavailable or less available. So, high-bandwidth uses of some types of information make other types of information that go along the same pipe less available," Greg Nojeim, a lawyer with the Center for Democracy and Technology, said. "A company could, as a cybersecurity countermeasure, slow down Netflix in order to make other data going across its pipes more available to users.""

+ - Swedish Farmers Have Doubts About Climatologists And Climate Change->

Submitted by cold fjord
cold fjord (826450) writes "ScienceNordic reports, "Researchers the world over almost unanimously agree that our climate is changing ... But many farmers – at least Swedish ones – have experienced mild winters and shifting weather before and are hesitant about trusting the scientists. The researcher who discovered the degree of scepticism among farmers was surprised by her findings. Therese Asplund ... was initially looking into how agricultural magazines covered climate change. Asplund found after studying ten years of issues of the two agricultural sector periodicals ATL and Land Lantbruk that they present climate change as scientifically confirmed, a real problem. But her research took an unexpected direction when she started interviewing farmers in focus groups about climate issues. Asplund had prepared a long list of questions about how the farmers live with the threat of climate change and what they plan to do to cope with the subsequent climate challenges. The conversations took a different course: “They explained that they didn’t quite believe in climate changes,” she says. “Or at least that these are not triggered by human activities.” ""
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Comment: Re:So what? (Score 1) 348

by Terry Pearson (#46790575) Attached to: VA Supreme Court: Michael Mann Needn't Turn Over All His Email

So why hasn't Steyn demanded the data under ordinary discovery rules? FOIA is an odd way to go about getting data you're supposedly entitled to in order to defend yourself in court.

I was wondering the same thing. However, it appears (based on other comments) that the FOIA request was not directly related to the defamation case. I would assume Steyn will still be able to use the discovery process for this.

If I were betting on this, I would say Steyn's lawyers may have put up the FOIA so that Mann's legal team would have to fight a fire on another front and possible redirect some resources to that request. The FOIA is probably much easier to file than it is to fight against it. But that is just my speculation.

And my opinion on the matter... If you research with public dollars, your source code, research, etc, should be open and free to use. We all payed for it, so why does only the one getting paid get to use it. If you want to keep your data private, research through a privately funded organization.

Comment: Re:Single ARM kernel? (Score 4, Interesting) 179

by Terry Pearson (#46783105) Attached to: Ubuntu Linux 14.04 LTS Trusty Tahr Released
As someone who works on Linux on ARM projects, I would have to disagree. There are good reasons to bring devices into the tree.

It really does make sense to have a single ARM kernel source with a device tree. This is not a single binary for all, but a single source tree. When you compile, it is not like you are getting all the bloat of a hundred different board packages. You use a different make script that pulls in the appropriate files. What it does give us is great templates to use when porting to similar sources.

If you ever take a look at board manufacturers' kernel source, each distribution is often very different from another. It takes a while to reconcile it with mainline kernel source. And it is even more of a pain to upgrade to a new kernel when a board maker had some whacky code placed in there. By at least placing it in the device tree, it gives them the incentive to use a template of code that already exists. Then hopefully some of us have an easier time porting when we want to upgrade Kernels and such.

I know it does not seem like it makes a lot of sense to some, but there really are good reasons for the change.

P.S. The unified Kernel is a Linux issue as a whole, not just an Ubuntu thing.

Comment: Re:Quick question (Score 2) 179

by Terry Pearson (#46782971) Attached to: Ubuntu Linux 14.04 LTS Trusty Tahr Released
I actually was in the same boat as you. I wasn't a fan early on, but now I actually like it. I mainly use Eclipse or the terminal, so the UI is not super important as long as it does not eat resources. 14.04 seems to be better in this realm. It seems resource use has been getting better. In regards to the interface, I just setup my preschooler with an account on my Ubuntu laptop and Unity was easy enough for her (obviously I did some setup ahead of time). They have really started making the interface intuitive and I give them some serious credit for that.

Comment: Useful for developers (Score 5, Interesting) 47

by Terry Pearson (#46099929) Attached to: Google Launches Cordova Powered Chrome Apps For Android and iOS
As a developer, I can see the usefulness of this. This makes me consider developing Chrome apps where previously I had not considered it. Usually, we have to choose our platforms based on our projected return and our limited time. This usually means that only Android and IOS are supported. Given that one could kill two birds with one stone, and have a bonus of Chrome apps, it may be worth checking out.

Comment: Re:There's a lesson in here for every tech company (Score 1) 89

by Terry Pearson (#44887889) Attached to: BlackBerry Reportedly Prepping To Slash Workforce By 40 Percent

You are right on. Tech is about innovation, not litigation.

The moral is simple, run like hell, don't look back because something might be gaining on you, and above all, don't stop to hire mercenaries to fight for you and then relax while a bunch of hired guns save your village with Elmer Bernstein's music in the background.

P.S. Nice "moral". If I had mod points, I would be scoring you as 'funny'.

Comment: Blackberry OS (Score 2, Informative) 89

by Terry Pearson (#44887859) Attached to: BlackBerry Reportedly Prepping To Slash Workforce By 40 Percent
Blackberry could come back as a semi successful phone manufacturer if they adopted an open platform for their hardware (i.e. Android) and build premium business apps that would be included with their phones. There simply is not enough room for another OS when so many have IOS and Android.

Comment: But the NFL is Non-profit (Score 5, Informative) 208

by Terry Pearson (#44685513) Attached to: X.Org Foundation Loses 501(c)3 Non-Profit Status
Meanwhile, no one has a problem with the National Football League being considered "non-profit" by IRS standards ( http://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/nfl/2013/05/29/nfl-sports-leagues-irs-tax-exemption/2370945/ ). I am not saying that X.org did not screw things up, but we certainly have some strange qualifications to benefit from non-profit status. X.org sounds like they had some trouble filing, but I am sympathetic to non-profits in general having difficulty filing. Oftentimes, they really are run by people who are passionate about their cause, but not necessarily familiar with the accounting standards needed to remain in good standing with the IRS. Compliance with reporting requirements can cost you a lot in accounting fees and time.

Comment: Exercise in Futility (Score 1) 134

by Terry Pearson (#42714979) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Best Free and Open Source Apps For Android?
This is just an exercise in futility. Most software gets abandoned at some point. One usually owns a cell phone for two years. If it works for that time period, who cares if it is abandoned later? This is not an attack on open source solutions (I'm all for them), I just feel that restricting yourself to only open source for fear of abandonment is a little bit like a single guy staying away from all girls because one dumped him once.

Comment: Re:Need to make a comparison, not absolute judgmen (Score 2) 446

by Terry Pearson (#41764957) Attached to: 72% of Xbox 360 Gamers Approve of "More Military Drone Strikes"

Is it worth taking civilian deaths on our side, through terrorism, to avoid civilians deaths on the other side?

Civilians, by nature should be valued as equally as possible. Obviously, a state's military has a duty to their own citizens, but I think we should find a way to avoid civilian deaths on each side. It is not their fight. Their children didn't ask for this. As decent human beings, it is our duty to prevent harm to civilians on either side.

To be awake is to be alive. -- Henry David Thoreau, in "Walden"

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