Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive


Forgot your password?

Comment Re:Even better idea (Score -1, Flamebait) 200

A) Trading 1/3 of the human population for a healthy bee population seems fair to me. Most of you lot it scum anyway.

B) Why use pesticides at all? With that superfluous 1/3 gone you wouldn't need as much food anyway.

C) Ok, maybe using pesticides that target said parasites might be a good thing.

D) There are loads of issues with genetically modified crops. Besides, I wouldn't mind seeing Monsanto go belly up. Now that's an immoral set of creeps!

E) First get rid of 1/3 of the human population, plant more flowers and let's see if the bees can get their act together themselves. I think they can.

Experts Puzzled By Bright Spot On Venus 107

Hugh Pickens writes "BBC reports that astronomers are puzzled by a strange bright spot which has appeared in the clouds of Venus, first identified by US amateur astronomer Frank Melillo on 19 July and later confirmed by the European Space Agency's Venus Express spacecraft. 'I have seen bright spots before but this one is an exceptionally bright and quite intense area,' says Melillo. The bright spot has started to expand since its first appearance, being spread by winds in Venus' thick atmosphere. Scientists are unsure as to what is causing the spot. 'An eruption would have to be quite energetic to get a cloud this high,' said Dr. Sanjay Limaye of the University of Wisconsin. Furthermore, at a latitude of 50 degrees south, the spot lies outside the region of known volcanoes on Venus. Another potential source for the bright spot are charged particles from the Sun interacting with Venus' atmosphere. It's also possible that atmospheric turbulence may have caused bright material to become concentrated in one area. 'Right now, I think it's anybody's guess,' adds Limaye."

British Start-Up Tests Flying Saucers 65

Sabre Runner writes to mention that a new British start-up, Aesir, has acquired the assets of a defunct drone company and is working on evolving a working model from several prototypes of "flying saucer" drones. "Aesir's first prototype, named 'Embler' [...] demonstrates the so-called 'Coanda effect,' where air speeds up as it 'sticks' to a curved surface. Aesir's drones take advantage of the Coanda effect to direct air down, away from the drone, boosting lift. Aesir doesn't appear to have any paying customers yet — and is reportedly bankrolled by a single investor."

RIAA Says "Don't Expect DRMed Music To Work Forever" 749

Oracle Goddess writes "Buying DRMed content, then having that content stop working later, is fair, writes Steven Metalitz, the lawyer who represents the MPAA, RIAA in a letter to the top legal advisor at the Copyright Office. 'We reject the view that copyright owners and their licensees are required to provide consumers with perpetual access to creative works.' In other words, if it stops working, too bad. Not surprisingly, Metalitz also strongly opposes any exemption that would allow users to legally strip DRM from content if a store goes dark and takes down its authentication servers."

Network Solutions Suffers Massive Data Breach 70

dasButcher writes "Network Solutions, the domain registration and hosting service company, suffered a massive security breach that lasted three months and exposed tens of thousands of credit card numbers of its customers and of the businesses that use its hosting and online payment processing service. The company is just beginning the victim notification process. 'There is no information on how the code was planted on the sites. While examination of the code shows that it had the ability to ship data off to a third party, and Network Solutions believes that it did just that, the exact code is not available for public review. There is also no public information as to where the data believed to be stolen was sent.'"

Comment Re:what does open mean? (Score 1) 197

Perl took the best from C, shell scripting, awk and grep and extended it even further. It allows 20 million ways to get results. The number one reason to use perl is that it gets the job done. There is a cubic ass-ton of high quality modules available, for free. The way the language incorporates useful datastructures, regular expressions, ties, closures and a host of other contructs make it a very pleasant high level language

Head of the Perl Lovers club

You can't have it even if you pry it from my cold dead fingers

Collaborative Software For Pair Programming? 302

DavidMatuszek writes "I will be teaching Java again this Fall. Students work in pairs, but unfortunately (after the first hour) typically not physically together. I would like to find collaborative software that is (1) dead simple to use, because that's not what the course is about, and (2) free. Google Docs would do, but students will be sharing code — plain text — not RTF or HTML or Word files. Is there such software for plain text?"

Ireland Criminalizes Blasphemy Screenshot-sm 1376

An anonymous reader writes "Another European country clamps down on free speech. From the article: 'It does seem bizarre that, in 2009, a modern European nation would seek to shield religious belief from criticism — yet that is what is happening in Ireland right now. In repealing the 1961 Defamation Act, the Irish government sought to expunge the worst excesses of Ireland's draconian laws restricting free speech, but in the process it has ended up making offending religious belief a criminal offence. Aside from a 25,000 fine (reduced from the 100,000 originally sought by the government), the new Defamation Act gives the authorities the power to stage raids on publishers: the courts may now issue a warrant authorising the police to enter, using "reasonable force," premises where they have grounds for believing there are copies of "blasphemous statements."'"

Comment Re:Whatever The Party says (Score 1) 645

Copyright is about making copies. Not about importing items. Importing a book is not copying a book. You can import every book on the planet and not worry about copyright.

However, this _is_ about electrons. It was easy for Amazon to cancel the book on the Kindle, therefore they did.

The Hidden Costs of Microsoft's Free Office Online 174

Michael_Curator writes "Despite what you've heard, the online version of Office 2010 announced by Microsoft earlier this week won't be free to corporate users. Business customers will either have to pay a subscription fee or purchase corporate access licenses (CALs) for Office in order to be given access to the online application suite (Microsoft already does this with email — the infamous Outlook Web Access). But wait — there's more! A Microsoft spokesperson told me that customers will need to buy a SharePoint server, which ranges from $4,400 plus CALs, or $41,000 with all CALs included, if they want to share documents created using the online version of Office 2010."
Lord of the Rings

LoTR Lawsuit Threatens Hobbit Production 427

eyrieowl writes "J.R.R.'s heirs are suing for royalties on the LoTR films. Apparently they haven't gotten any money due to some creative accounting. Peter Jackson ought to understand...he had to sue the studio for much the same reason. As for The Hobbit? FTFA: 'Tolkien's family and a British charity they head, the Tolkien Trust, seek more than $220 million in compensation...[and]...the option to terminate further rights to the author's work.'"

Comment Re:It'll never happen (Score -1, Troll) 554

You make it sound like the USA doesn't have its own agenda and ample proof it doesn't care about the welfare of anyone else. Don't start about recognizing laws when you unlawfully invaded a sovereign country and executed their democratically elected head of state.

That said, I'm all for deorbiting the ISS and using the budget for real science. Or perhaps pay the Russians to build fifty new MIR spacecraft and have change to spare.

Backed up the system lately?