Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
The Internet

One Broken Router Takes Out Half the Internet? 412

Posted by kdawson
from the brain-gone-punky dept.
Silent Stephus writes "I work for a smallish hosting provider, and this morning we experienced a networking event with one of our upstreams. What is interesting about this, is it's being caused by a mis-configured router in Europe — and it appears to be affecting a significant portion of the transit providers across the Internet. In other words, a single mis-configured router is apparently able to cause a DOS for a huge chunk of the Net. And people don't believe me when I tell them all this new-fangled technology is held together by duct-tape and baling wire!"
Linux Business

Ubuntu 8.10 Outperforms Windows Vista 689

Posted by timothy
from the windows-probably-runs-more-windows-apps dept.
Anonymous writes "By now a lot has been reported on the new features and improvements in Ubuntu 8.10; it also looks like the OS is outperforming Vista in early benchmarking (Geekbench, boot times, etc.) At what point does this start to make a difference in the market place?" (And though there are lot of ways to benchmark computers, Ubuntu 8.10 with Compiz Fusion is certainly prettier on my Eee than the Windows XP that it came with.)
Privacy

Maryland Police Put Activists' Names On Terror List 426

Posted by timothy
from the bad-incentive-to-remain-peaceful dept.
aaandre writes with word of a Washington Post story which begins: "The Maryland State Police classified 53 nonviolent activists as terrorists and entered their names and personal information into state and federal databases that track terrorism suspects, the state police chief acknowledged yesterday. The police also entered the activists' names into the federal Washington-Baltimore High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area database, which tracks suspected terrorists. One well-known antiwar activist from Baltimore, Max Obuszewski, was singled out in the intelligence logs released by the ACLU, which described a 'primary crime' of 'terrorism-anti-government' and a 'secondary crime' of 'terrorism-anti-war protesters.'" According to the article, "Both [former state police superintendent Thomas] Hutchins and [Maryland Police Superintendent Terrence] Sheridan said the activists' names were entered into the state police database as terrorists partly because the software offered limited options for classifying entries." Reader kcurtis adds "The State Police say they are purging the data, but this is one more example (on top of yesterday's news that datamining for terrorists is not feasible due to false positives) of just how badly the use of these lists can be abused."
Programming

Python 2.6 to Smooth the Way for 3.0, Coming Next Month 184

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the my-tab-key-still-hates-you dept.
darthcamaro writes "Some programming languages just move on to major version numbers, leaving older legacy versions (and users) behind, but that's not the plan for Python. Python 2.6 has the key goal of trying to ensure compatibility between Python 2.x and Python 3.0, which is due out in a month's time. From the article: 'Once you have your code running on 2.6, you can start getting ready for 3.0 in a number of ways,' Guido Van Rossum said. 'In particular, you can turn on "Py3k warnings," which will warn you about obsolete usage patterns for which alternatives already exist in 2.6. You can then change your code to use the modern alternative, and this will make you more ready for 3.0.'"
Earth

Removing CO2 From the Air Efficiently 487

Posted by kdawson
from the install-anywhere dept.
Canadian scientists have created a device that efficiently removes CO2 from the atmosphere. "The proposed air capture system differs from existing carbon capture and storage technology ... while CCS involves installing equipment at, say, a coal-fired power plant to capture CO2 produced during the coal-burning process, ... air capture machines will be able to literally remove the CO2 present in ambient air everywhere. [The team used] ... a custom-built tower to capture CO2 directly from the air while requiring less than 100 kilowatt-hours of electricity per tonne of carbon dioxide."
The Internet

+ - Teacher convicted for porn pop-ups

Submitted by
jlorenzatti
jlorenzatti writes "A substitute teacher in Winham Connecticut was convicted of exposing her students to pornography through pop-ups occurring on her classroom computer .

This story raises an interesting discussion:

Where does the responsibility lay for spyware/adware/viruses/porn pop-ups not occuring on a network? Is it the user, the IT Department, or both?"
Republicans

+ - Law requires ISPs to record all surfing activity

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "A bill introduced last week by Representative Lamar Smith (R-TX) is beginning to raise eyebrows. (...) Under the guise of reducing child pornography, the SAFETY (Stopping Adults Facilitating the Exploitation of Today's Youth) Act is currently the gravest threat to digital privacy rights on the Internet. Given the increasing tendency of people, especially young people, to use the Internet as a primary means of communication, this measure would affect nearly all Americans in ways we are only beginning to understand. Also, given the fact that the Act requires all Internet Service Providers to record the web surfing activity of all Internet users, this amounts to the warrantless wiretapping of the entire Internet."
Announcements

+ - D-Wave Demonstrates First Quantum Computer

Submitted by
peace2300
peace2300 writes "http://www.extremetech.com/article2/0,1697,2094849 ,00.asp On Tuesday, members of D-Wave Systems, a Vancouver-based hardware firm, gathered at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View to demonstrate what they claimed is the world's first commercially viable quantum computer: the "16-qubit" Orion. Touted as a systems-level "proof-of-concept" machine, the Orion uses a new type of analog processor that taps into quantum mechanics, rather than using the conventional physics associated with today's digital processing, to drive the computation. D-Wave maintained that its approach allows for the building of scalable processor architectures using many of the conventional processes and technologies employed in the semiconductor industry today. Furthermore, because Orion's processors are computationally equivalent to more standard devices, D-Wave says that any application can be developed for one type of quantum computer and then recast as an application for another. Full story here"
Microsoft

+ - Microsoft settles Iowa antitrust case

Submitted by ForestRangerBob
ForestRangerBob (666) writes "Comes v. Microsoft is over after Microsoft agreed to a settlement. The class action lawsuit alleged that Iowa consumers had been overcharged for Microsoft products for a decade owing to Microsoft's monopoly of the market. Sounds very pro-consumer? Predictably, the lawyers are about to get a big payday. From the article: "the software giant will certainly be on the hook for millions of dollars, some of which may end up helping Iowa school kids. Average consumers will probably end up with a few bucks or a coupon for a free operating system upgrade, but the real winners will no doubt be the lawyers — the team prosecuting the case has already earned $60 million in legal fees from a 2004 case in Minnesota that charged Microsoft with similar offenses.""
Security

+ - NASA hacker fights extradition

Submitted by ukhackster
ukhackster (978279) writes "The UK hacker accused of breaking into NASA's computers is fighting a last-ditch attempt to avoid extradition. Gary McKinnon's lawyers launched an appeal at Britain's High Court this week, and claimed that he would face 60 years in jail if convicted in America.

McKinnon, who claims that he was only looking for evidence of UFOs, was apparently taken ill on Wednesday. Friends say the case, which has been running for several years, has become too much for him.

Is 60 years far too draconian a sentence, given that McKinnon apparently didn't mean to cause any harm. Or do we need to take tough action against hackers, even if their motives are benign?"
Graphics

Vista Not Playing Nice With FPS Games 437

Posted by kdawson
from the shoot-em-up dept.
PetManimal writes "Computerworld is reporting that gamers who have installed Vista are reporting problems with first person-shooter titles such as CounterStrike, Half-Life 2, Doom 3. and F.E.A.R. (Users have compiled lists of games with Vista issues.) The complaints, which have turned up on gamers' forums, cite crashes and low frame rates. Not surprisingly, the problems relate to graphics hardware and software: 'Experts blame still-flaky software drivers, Vista's complexity, and a dearth of new video cards optimized for Vista's new rendering technology, DirectX 10. That's despite promises from Microsoft that Vista is backwards-compatible with XP's graphic engine, DirectX 9, and that it will support existing games. Meanwhile, games written to take advantage of DirectX 10 have been slow to emerge. And one Nvidia executive predicts that gamers may not routinely see games optimized for DirectX 10 until mid-2008.'"
Biotech

Something in Your Food is Moving 378

Posted by timothy
from the go-ahead-ingest-a-colony dept.
Dekortage writes "The New York Times has a report on probiotic food: food that has live bacteria in it. From the article: "[for Dannon's] Activia, a line of yogurt with special live bacteria that are marketed as aiding regularity, sales in United States stores have soared well past the $100 million mark.... Probiotics in food are part of a larger trend toward 'functional foods,' which stress their ability to deliver benefits that have traditionally been the realm of medicine or dietary supplements.""
Games

Ghostbusters Game Confirmed, On Hold 74

Posted by Zonk
from the back-off-man-i'm-a-scientist dept.
IGN confirms a delicious rumour that's been circulating since this past weekend. Yes, Virginia, there is a next-gen Ghostbusters game currently in the works. Footage from the work in progress, made up by developer Zootfly, has been circulating with much debate over its authenticity. Unfortunately, right now it doesn't look like we'll be seeing this title any time soon. From the article: "We are very glad to see the overwhelming response to the Ghostbusters prototype movies. What you've seen is indeed in-game footage of early prototypes on the Xbox 360, running on ZootFly's proprietary engine. Due to licensing issues, further development of the Ghostbusters game hit a bump on the road. But everybody here at ZootFly is working actively on resolving the challenges with the owners of the Ghostbusters IP."

Moon May Be Geologically Active 72

Posted by kdawson
from the pining-for-the-fjords dept.
dptalia writes, "For decades scientist have thought that the moon has been 'dead' for about 1 to 3 billion years. However, new research points to the idea that the moon may have been volcanically active as recently as 1 million years ago. In fact, NASA geophysicist Paul Lowman believes the moon's core is still molten."

"Religion is something left over from the infancy of our intelligence, it will fade away as we adopt reason and science as our guidelines." -- Bertrand Russell

Working...