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California To Move To Online Textbooks 468

Hugh Pickens writes "Last year California spent $350m on textbooks so facing a state budget shortfall of $24.3 billion, California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has unveiled a plan to save money by phasing out 'antiquated, heavy, expensive textbooks' in favor of internet aids. Schwarzenegger believes internet activities such as Facebook, Twitter and downloading to iPods show that young people are the first to adopt new online technologies and that the internet is the best way to learn in classrooms so from the beginning of the school year in August, math and science students in California's high schools will have access to online texts that have passed an academic standards review. 'It's nonsensical — and expensive — to look to traditional hard-bound books when information today is so readily available in electronic form,' writes Schwarzenegger. 'As the music and newspaper industries will attest, those who adapt quickly to changing consumer and business demands will thrive in our increasingly digital society and worldwide economy. Digital textbooks can help us achieve those goals and ensure that California's students continue to thrive in the global marketplace.'"

Wine Project Frustration and Forking 470

Elektroschock writes "Wine attempts to implement the Windows API layer on Linux. There are some limitations and an important one is the missing DIB engine, bug 421. Chris Howe comprehends the dissatisfaction of core developers with the arbitrary project governance: 'Sorry to sound like a stuck record but the Wine website still lists "write a DIB engine" as a requirement, and every time someone does, the patches disappear down a hole because they're "not right." Someone document what "would be right," or take "write a DIB engine" off the list. I'd love to have a go at documenting it myself, but I don't have the time to reverse engineer it from a few years' worth of rejected solutions.' The latest attempt of Massimo Del Fedel satisfied all requirements set previously for the long standing bug 421, and his optional engine seems to work fine by all Wine quality standards. He seems to be extraordinary stubborn and insusceptible to mobbing. Usually it is extremely frustrating for developers when the goalpost is constantly moved. When is the right time for project members to fork when their chief maintainer does not respond anymore or pursues an adverse commercial agenda?"

Students, the Other Unprotected Lab Animals 236

theodp writes "Slate reports on the horrible — and preventable — death of a young UCLA biochemist in a t-butyl lithium incident, which led a Chemical Health and Safety columnist to the disheartening conclusion that most academic laboratories are unsafe venues for work or study. It's estimated that accidents and injuries occur hundreds of times more frequently in academic labs than in industrial ones. Why? For one thing, Slate says, occupational safety and health laws that protect workers in hazardous jobs apply only to employees, not to undergrads, grad students, or research fellows who receive stipends from outside funders."

In The US, Email Is Only For Old People 383

lxw56 writes "Two years after Slashdot discussed the theory that Korean young people were rejecting email, an article at the Slate site written by Chad Lorenz comes to the same conclusion about the United States. 'Those of us older than 25 can't imagine a life without e-mail. For the Facebook generation, it's hard to imagine a life of only e-mail, much less a life before it. I can still remember the proud moment in 1996 when I sent my first e-mail from the college computer lab. It felt like sending a postcard from the future. I was getting a glimpse of how the Internet would change everything--nothing could be faster and easier than e-mail.'"

Submission + - BBC Abuse of license fee's (

therealgrumpydog writes: "This is where your life gets tricky from a legal "standpoint" in the UK with the BBC Television License. I have been trawling through the "small print" To see what is legal and illegal. Basically we are at a crux and damned in the UK by the BBC. You no longer need to have a television for the BBC and TV licensing to fine you. All you need is a device that can view or record any television programme and you are doomed. Yes that is right, you will have to pay £135.50 for a colour license and £45.50 for a monochrome (Black and White) television or any other device. So I ask where do we go from here? This is just another stealth tax and every mobile phone you buy, ipod,television, DVD recorder, computer, the information is legally past onto Basically we are being screwed over and the government is abusing the Data Protection Act! This is illegal in law but it is enforced. We cannot keep on living like this! If you have an receiving device like a radio you still have to pay the fee's to the BBC. I for one, if I do not have a television but have a computer that can stream television and radio, so what, but I am obliged by law to pay a license fee. I say fuck you BBC. The BBC used to have respect, especially the World Service. No longer does the BBC have that respect, it is just another stealth tax. Thanks to Blair and now Gordon Brown the UK is in a mess, So Just remember when you buy a new phone your details are stored on a database and you can be threatened with a fine up to £1,000 because you can receive television over it. It is an illegal offence if you do not buy a license, All your privacy has gone to pot. Solution, buying any device that is capable of streaming any media, give a foobar name and address to stop the BBC stalking you unwarranted money. Btw your warranty on your goods is still valid, keep the receipt and original packaging. Good luck, Do not feed the BBC Trolls"

"The most important thing in a man is not what he knows, but what he is." -- Narciso Yepes