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Comment: Flatland is the gateway to new dimensions... (Score 1) 293

by andhar (#46344529) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What Essays and Short Stories Should Be In a Course On Futurism?

Flatland, by Edwin Abbot, is a short and amusing book that describes the lives and trials of two-dimensional beings. It's a social satire, but it also gives one the feeling that our personal realities, and indeed, our present day societies may not be (and should not be) the limit of what we can imagine and/or what we can achieve. For me it seems like the perfect stepping off point for an exploration of the future.

+ - Sochi hackers will have field day with visitors' devices->

Submitted by andhar
andhar (194607) writes "It's being widely reported that Russian spies and/or criminals will be working overtime to gain access to peoples' phones and computers as they visit the country for the winter games. The report on NBC News illustrates directly the dangers involved by seeing how long it took for a cell phone and two brand-new computers to get hacked and start calling home. The answer: less than 24 hours, and almost immediately for a couple of the devices."
Link to Original Source

Comment: It's about Russia, Sweden & the US (Score 5, Insightful) 65

by andhar (#45668987) Attached to: New Baltic Data Cable Plan Unfolding

According to the Swedish news, Russia sends a good deal of its internet traffic via Sweden to the outside world. They say that the Swedish link is faster and cheaper. Meanwhile the Swedish equivalent of the NSA, called FRA, is spying on Russian traffic (legally) and it sends valuable info on to the US (legality unclear).

Finland:
1) Build a new data link that circumvents Sweden's NSA-friendly surveillance
2) Make it only slightly more expensive than the current data link via Sweden, but tout your net neutrality
3) Sell boatloads of capacity to Russia
4) Profit

Comment: The proof of the evidence is in the prosecution (Score 1) 415

by andhar (#45547239) Attached to: NSA Planned To Discredit Radicals Based On Web-Browsing Habits

How much a digital evidence trail is worth is simply a function of how much the plaintiff or prosecutor wants to exploit it. Take the actions of the MAFIAA groups and their flimsy evidence surrounding file sharing and such -- they're suing and settling right and left not because of the quality or even accuracy of the digital evidence against the defendants, but rather, because of the vigour with which they pursue the cases.

+ - What would a spook-proof Slashdot look like?

Submitted by andhar
andhar (194607) writes "If we the Slashdot community decided to set an example, even for just one day, and give users the opportunity to browse Slashdot without fear of being cataloged by the likes of the NSA, what technologies would we be using? What do you think would be the best balance between use of use and security?

Highest rated solution gets a shot at consulting on implementing one day of secure Slashdot?"
Space

Pluto — a Complex and Changing World 191

Posted by timothy
from the can-imagine-quite-a-bit dept.
astroengine writes "After 4 years of processing the highest resolution photographs the Hubble Space Telescope could muster, we now have the highest resolution view of Pluto's surface ever produced. Most excitingly, these new observations show an active world with seasonal changes altering the dwarf planet's surface. It turns out that this far-flung world has more in common with Earth than we would have ever imagined."
The Almighty Buck

America's Army Games Cost $33 Million Over 10 Years 192

Posted by Soulskill
from the your-tax-dollars-at-play dept.
Responding to a Freedom Of Information Act request, the US government has revealed the operating costs of the America's Army game series over the past decade. The total bill comes to $32.8 million, with yearly costs varying from $1.3 million to $5.6 million. "While operating America's Army 3 does involve ongoing expenses, paying the game's original development team isn't one of them. Days after the game launched in June, representatives with the Army confirmed that ties were severed with the Emeryville, California-based team behind the project, and future development efforts were being consolidated at the America's Army program office at Redstone Arsenal in Alabama. A decade after its initial foray into the world of gaming, the Army doesn't appear to be withdrawing from the industry anytime soon. In denying other aspects of the FOIA request, the Army stated 'disclosure of this information is likely to cause substantial harm to the Department of the Army's competitive position in the gaming industry.'"

Comment: Have to agree, from experience... (Score 5, Interesting) 203

by andhar (#30239556) Attached to: Apple Newton vs. Apple iPhone

I had a Newton Message Pad 100 (the very first model) which I bought cheap in '94 on a whim. It was already totally outdated when I bought it. Still, in its lifetime, I printed from it, sent and received faxes from it, all kinds of stuff you'd normally need a computer for. Totally handy.

Come '96 and I'm in grad school and I take every note for the whole two years on that thing and it was GREAT. I mean really, had it been a pain would I have kept on the entire time? Having a pretty big screen meant you had plenty of room to scrawl out those notes on the screen, and as I had maybe not 'neat' handwriting, but at least consistent handwriting it worked great.

In 1996, being able to search your notes on the computer saved me so much time that I could have a band. So maybe having a Newton didn't get me chicks, but at least the band did!

Then, in 2000, I was still using it. But I accidentally left it on a conference room table after a meeting and it disappeared. It actually got STOLEN. In the 21st century.

+ - What scares you most about Russia?

Submitted by andhar
andhar (194607) writes "In the comments to the story of the Russian policeman turned YouTube celeb, there were lots of comments that warned caution for Russia when visiting the cop's site. My question is, what scares Slashdot readers most about Russia today?

Also, I ask all commenters to post as AC as a show of support for the non-anonymous non-cowards out there letting the sun shine in."

Comment: Re:Unnecessary surveillance? (Score 1) 125

by andhar (#29678137) Attached to: Details On Worldwide Surveillance and Filtering

The 'Windows 7 Sins' stunt was pretty retarded, but the guy (I admit I don't know who he is, and what he's known for) in the interview afterwards is really articulate and makes a very good argument against proprietary software. No beard, no stink of geek, just a smart guy with a cause.

Maybe someone out there can edit out the giant garbage can?

Comment: Obligatory Trackman Marble FX... (Score 1) 137

by andhar (#29654993) Attached to: Microsoft Research Shows Off Multi-Touch Mouse Prototypes

This baby, the Trackman Marble FX, is the gold standard for pointing devices. Four programmable buttons and mousing position that doesn't require you to twist your arm and put your palm on the table. I would gladly use it today, except that if you use a PS2 to USB adapter, the buttons are no longer programmable. Major, major sadness!

On the other hand (no pun intended), I now make good use of a tablet with stylus -- another pointing device that doesn't require the arm-twisting. It takes getting used to, but it's sooo much easier on your arm. Take care of your arms -- don't just start using a mouse with your left hand.

Comment: Found my list! (Score 1) 513

by andhar (#28954985) Attached to: Goodbye Apple, Hello Music Production On Ubuntu

Here's my market survey (of serious contenders) -- it doesn't mention Reaper, though we checked that too.

-snip-

OK, so we seem to be slightly cutting edge with our hy-tek plans for fame and glory. As I kept searching, I could hardly believe that there was such a gap in the software market between Macs and PCs. It all seems so very 1993 or something. I mean they all run on Intel processors now, so WTF, mate?

By my market survey, here's the options...

Tracktion -- Mac & PC, slightly dodgy, but it's 100 bucks (or free if you want to try the keygen).
Cubase -- Mac & PC, not at all dodgy, but it's 500 bucks.
Audacity -- Mac, PC, Linux, but please...way too limiting even for us.
Traverso DAW -- Mac, Linux, Windows, kinda better than Audacity, but not really. Need I say more?
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Logic 8 -- Mac Only
Protools -- Must have Digidesign soundcard
Cakewalk -- PC only
Ardour -- Mac, Linux

So, 400 bucks difference is a lot of beer money or like a plane ticket to Berlin or something.

Small is beautiful.

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