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Open Source

How Does Heartbleed Alter the 'Open Source Is Safer' Discussion? 380

Posted by Soulskill
from the or-at-least-marginally-less-unsafe dept.
jammag writes: "Heartbleed has dealt a blow to the image of free and open source software. In the self-mythology of FOSS, bugs like Heartbleed aren't supposed to happen when the source code is freely available and being worked with daily. As Eric Raymond famously said, 'given enough eyeballs, all bugs are shallow.' Many users of proprietary software, tired of FOSS's continual claims of superior security, welcome the idea that Heartbleed has punctured FOSS's pretensions. But is that what has happened?"

Comment: It is art (Score 5, Informative) 263

It is art, no prediction. It is obvious from the first glance. And the article confirms it:

If you're tempted to assume that the image was actually a serious depiction of what a future wrist computer might look like-well, no. Inside the magazine, which only had a brief editiorial about future computers, the editors pointed out that it wasn't a coincidence that it happened to be the April issue of Byte.

News

$30K Worth of Multimeters Must Be Destroyed Because They're Yellow 653

Posted by Soulskill
from the school-buses-on-high-alert dept.
An anonymous reader points out a post at the blog of Sparkfun, a hobbyist electronics retailer. They recently received a letter from U.S. Customs saying a shipment of 2,000 multimeters was being barred from entry into the country. The reason? Trademark law. A company named Fluke holds a trademark on multimeters that have a 'contrasting yellow border.' Sparkfun's multimeters are a yellowish orange, but it was enough for Customs to stop the shipment. Returning the shipment is not an option because of import taxes in China, so the multimeters must now be destroyed. At $15 per item, it'll cost Sparkfun $30,000, plus the $150/hr fee for destroying them. Sparkfun had no idea about the trademark, and doesn't mind changing the color, but they say restrictions like these are a flaw in the trademark system. "Small business does not have the resources to stay abreast of all trademarks for all the products they don't carry. If you’re going to put the onus on the little guy to avoid infringing IP then you shouldn't need an army of consultants or attorneys to find this information."
Power

Environmentalists Propose $50 Billion Buyout of Coal Industry - To Shut It Down 712

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the could-but-won't-because-reality dept.
cartechboy writes "What's $50 billion among friends, right? At least Felix Kramer and Gil Friend are thinking big, so there is that. The pair have published an somewhat audacious proposal to spend $50 billion dollars to buy up and then shut down every single private and public coal company operating in the United States. The scientific benefits: eliminating acid rain, airborne emissions, etc). The shutdown proposal includes the costs of retraining for the approximately 87,000 coal-industry workers who would lose their jobs over the proposed 10-year phaseout of coal. Since Kramer and Friend don't have $50 billion, they suggest the concept could be funded as a public service and if governments can't do it maybe some rich guys can — and the names Gates, Buffett and Bloomberg come up. Any takers?"
Education

Ask Slashdot: What Essays and Short Stories Should Be In a Course On Futurism? 293

Posted by Soulskill
from the i-have-no-mouth-and-i-must-scream dept.
Ellen Spertus writes "I'll be teaching an interdisciplinary college course on how technology is changing the world and how students can influence that change. In addition to teaching the students how to create apps, I'd like for us to read and discuss short stories and essays about how the future (next 40 years) might play out. For example, we'll read excerpts from David Brin's Transparent Society and Ray Kurzweil's The Singularity is Near. I'm also considering excerpts of Cory Doctorow's Homeland and Neal Stephenson's Diamond Age. What other suggestions do Slashdotters have?"

+ - Alternatives to Slashdot post beta? 8

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Like many Slashdotters, I intend to stop visiting Slashdot after the beta changeover. After years of steady decline in the quality of discussions here, the beta will be the last straw. What sites alternative to Slashdot have others found? The best I have found has been arstechnica.com, but it has been a while since I've looked for tech discussion sites."

+ - Video of Britain's Taranis supersonic drone->

Submitted by chrism238
chrism238 (657741) writes "ABC News (Australia) is presenting vision of the of a state-of-the-art drone touted as the future of British warfare, showing it soaring over what is thought to be Woomera in remote South Australia — "'Australia's Area 51". The Taranis drone is a joint project between UK defence and BAE Systems. The test drone cost 185 million pounds ($AUD336.5 million). It is designed to carry a payload of guided bombs and missiles, travel at supersonic speeds, and fly undetected by radar. The UK military says the Taranis will be operable via satellite from anywhere in the world.

The first test flight is being hailed as a "major landmark for UK aviation". The vision shows the sleek Taranis, named after the Celtic god of thunder, making a seamless take-off and conducting a number of manoeuvres over red desert during its first test flight. The British Military of Defence (MoD) will not confirm where the footage was shot, but in a submission last year to a UK parliamentary hearing, revealed that the Taranis Unmanned Combat Air Vehicle (UCAV) demonstrator had indeed conducted initial test flights at the Woomera test range."

Link to Original Source

+ - Gates returns to Windows 7 after being unable to install the Windows 8.1 upgrade 3

Submitted by Artem Tashkinov
Artem Tashkinov (764309) writes "According to rumors Bill Gate's first day at his office in Redmond turned out to be a complete disaster mixed with ostensibly curse words no one had expected from him. He tried to install the Windows 8.1 upgrade but the updater failed continuously asking to reboot the PC. Microsoft's new C.E.O. Satya Nadella who came to help resolve the situation couldn't sort it out. In the end Gates said he would be returning to Windows 7 for the foreseeable future."

+ - Induction stove not compatible with Iphone

Submitted by dovgr
dovgr (935487) writes "There is a story in the Swedish news paper Dagens Nyheter, Google translation at http://translate.google.com/tr... , telling the story of a woman who bought an induction stove, that caused a noise in her phone whenever using the phone. When complaining to stove service company, she was told that the stove is only compatible with Samsung, and recommended her to switch phones."

+ - Slashdot forces a beta site by default

Submitted by kelk1
kelk1 (660671) writes "As a poor submitter found out (https://developers.slashdot.org/story/14/02/05/2328224/html5-app-for-panasonic-tvs-rejected---jquery-is-a-hack), Slashdot (https://slashdot.org) suddenly forced a preview of its beta site without any warning on all its viewers.

Judging by the comments, the feedback was immediate and clearly negative.

I cannot speak for the forum moderation side, but my reaction to the front page was an knee jerk: "Oh no!, not another portal full of noise I cannot speed-read through." Text and hyperlinks are what we need, please, and as little graphics as possible. Think lynx, thank you."
Software

Does Anyone Make a Photo De-Duplicator For Linux? Something That Reads EXIF? 243

Posted by timothy
from the which-ones-are-not-like-the-others? dept.
postbigbang writes "Imagine having thousands of images on disparate machines. many are dupes, even among the disparate machines. It's impossible to delete all the dupes manually and create a singular, accurate photo image base? Is there an app out there that can scan a file system, perhaps a target sub-folder system, and suck in the images-- WITHOUT creating duplicates? Perhaps by reading EXIF info or hashes? I have eleven file systems saved, and the task of eliminating dupes seems impossible."
Education

Ask Slashdot: It's 2014 -- Which New Technologies Should I Learn? 387

Posted by Soulskill
from the integrated-abacus-solutions dept.
An anonymous reader writes "I've been a software engineer for about 15 years, most of which I spent working on embedded systems (small custom systems running Linux), developing in C. However, web and mobile technologies seem to be taking over the world, and while I acknowledge that C isn't going away anytime soon, many job offers (at least those that seem interesting and in small companies) are asking for knowledge on these new technologies (web/mobile). Plus, I'm interested in them anyway. Unfortunately, there are so many of those new technologies that it's difficult to figure out what would be the best use of my time. Which ones would you recommend? What would be the smallest set of 'new technologies' one should know to be employable in web/mobile these days?"

+ - CERN antimatter experiment produces first beam of antihydrogen->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes ""Matter and antimatter annihilate immediately when they meet, so aside from creating antihydrogen, one of the key challenges for physicists is to keep antiatoms away from ordinary matter. To do so, experiments take advantage of antihydrogen’s magnetic properties (which are similar to hydrogen’s) and use very strong non-uniform magnetic fields to trap antiatoms long enough to study them. However, the strong magnetic field gradients degrade the spectroscopic properties of the (anti)atoms. To allow for clean high-resolution spectroscopy, the ASACUSA collaboration developed an innovative set-up to transfer antihydrogen atoms to a region where they can be studied in flight, far from the strong magnetic field.""
Link to Original Source

+ - Physicists explain 'gravity-defying' chain trick->

Submitted by ananyo
ananyo (2519492) writes "Leaping up out of a jar in an arc before falling to the floor, the fountain-like motion of a chain of beads has puzzled millions around the world with its apparently gravity-defying behaviour. Now physicists think they have an explanation.
British science presenter Steve Mould, who made the experiment famous, explained the phenomenon as simply one of inertia: the falling chain has downward momentum, causing an upward momentum in beads leaving the pot. This, in turn, makes them leap before gravity can slowly reverse their momentum.
Mould’s explanation was clever, but wrong, says physicist John Biggins of the University of Cambridge, UK. The only way to account for the rise is for the chain to receive a 'kick' from the pot from which it is being pulled. This challenges not only the explanation given by Mould, but the conventional mathematics of chains, Biggins says."

Link to Original Source

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