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The Internet

Major ISPs Threaten To Throttle Innovation and Slow Network Upgrades 286

Posted by Soulskill
from the doubling-down-on-being-jerks dept.
An anonymous reader writes "In a letter released on Tuesday and addressed to the FCC chairman, a group of the U.S.'s top ISPs have warned that if the FCC re-classifies the internet as telecommunications, then innovation would slow or halt and network upgrades would be unaffordable. 'Under Title II, new service offerings, options, and features would be delayed or altogether foregone. Consumers would face less choice, and a less adaptive and responsive Internet. An era of differentiation, innovation, and experimentation would be replaced with a series of 'Government may I?' requests from American entrepreneurs.' They add, 'even the potential threat of Title II had an investment-chilling effect by erasing approximately 10% of some ISPs' market cap.' Ars Technica highlights earlier doomsday predictions by AT&T. The FCC is scheduled to vote May 15 on the chairman's recent proposal encompassing this reclassification option that the ISPs vehemently oppose." Reader Bob9113 adds that a protest is planned for the same day by those who oppose the FCC's plans.

Comment: Re:Popcorn (Score 1) 688

by bornagainpenguin (#46875311) Attached to: Firefox 29: Redesign
First, since you seem to be the big apologist for the travesty that Gnome has become, allow me to say 'Fuck you.'

Secondly...

Everbody bitches about what's gone, but not what we've added or improved.

Maybe this is because what's been added isn't an improvement? Maybe what was there before needed not to be removed or rewritten, but to have the bugs fixed? Oh that's right I forgot, you guys think chasing the new shiney is more important than fixing bugs or servicing an existing userbase. I guess that brings me back to point one....

United States

HealthCare.gov Can't Handle Appeals of Errors 208

Posted by samzenpus
from the that's-some-good-work-there-lou dept.
PapayaSF writes "The Washington Post reports that roughly 22,000 people have claimed they were charged too much, steered into the wrong insurance program, or denied coverage, but the HealthCare.gov website cannot handle appeals. They've filled out seven-page forms and mailed them to a federal contractor's office in Kentucky, where they were scanned and entered, but workers at CMS cannot read them because that part of the system has not been built. Other missing aspects are said to have higher priorities: completing the electronic payment system for insurers, the connections with state Medicaid programs, and the ability to adjust coverage to accommodate major changes such as new babies. People with complaints about mistakes have been told to 'return to the Web site and start over.'"
Social Networks

Startup Out of MIT Promises Digital Afterlife — Just Hand Over Your Data 241

Posted by timothy
from the ashes-to-ashes-dust-to-nsa dept.
v3rgEz writes "A new startup out of MIT offers early adopters a chance at the afterlife, of sorts: It promises to build an AI representation of the dearly departed based on chat logs, email, Facebook, and other digital exhaust generated over the years. "Eterni.me generates a virtual YOU, an avatar that emulates your personality and can interact with, and offer information and advice to your family and friends after you pass away," the team promises. But can a chat bot plus big data really produce anything beyond a creepy, awkward facsimile?"
Media

Is Amazon Making a Sub-$300 Console To Play Mobile Games? 76

Posted by samzenpus
from the play-time dept.
itwbennett writes "Yesterday, a story suggesting that Amazon was planning to launch a sub-$300 Android game console made the rounds. A $300 box to play mobile games on your TV? ITworld's Peter Smith doesn't buy it. 'If Amazon is working on some kind of set-top box, it's going to be about streaming,' says Smith. 'Music, video, and games. Remember back in November when Amazon announced G2, a new AWS instance type designed for streaming GPU intensive tasks like games? Combine Amazon's G2 cloud servers and an Amazon set top box for console-like game streaming, plus supporting Android and/or iOS games (possibly the latter would also be streamed), and of course support for Amazon Video and MP3, and we're getting closer to something that may be worth $300.'"
EU

France Broadens Surveillance Powers; Wider Scope Than NSA 169

Posted by timothy
from the touch-of-the-old-industrial-espionage dept.
krakman writes "With the NSA disclosures, French media was 'outraged'. Yet they appear to be worse than the NSA, with a new law that codifies standard practice and provides for no judicial oversight while allowing electronic surveillance for a broad range of purposes, including 'national security,' the protection of France's 'scientific and economic potential' and prevention of ;terrorism' or 'criminality.' The government argues that the law, passed last week with little debate as part of a routine military spending bill, which takes effect in 2015, does not expand intelligence powers. Rather, officials say, those powers have been in place for years, and the law creates rules where there had been none, notably with regard to real-time location tracking. French intelligence agencies have little experience publicly justifying their practices. Parliamentary oversight did not begin until 2007."
Businesses

Female Software Engineers May Be Even Scarcer Than We Thought 445

Posted by Soulskill
from the somewhere-between-too-few-and-not-enough dept.
itwbennett writes "According to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2012 about 22% of computer programmers, software and web developers in the United States were female. That number comes from the Current Population Survey, which is based on interviews with 60,000 households. But Tracy Chou, an engineer at Pinterest, thinks the number is actually much lower than that. And last month she created a GitHub project to collect data on how many females are employed full-time writing or architecting software. Even at this early point, the data is striking: Based on data reported for 107 companies, 438 of 3,594 engineers (12%) are female. Here's how some well-known companies stack up."
Medicine

DHHS Preparing 'Tech Surge' To Fix Remaining Healthcare.gov Issues 429

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the operation-aca-freedom-eagle dept.
itwbennett writes "It's no secret that the healthcare.gov website has been plagued by problems since its launch 3 weeks ago. On Sunday, the Department of Health and Human Services said that it's now bringing in the big guns: 'Our team is bringing in some of the best and brightest from both inside and outside government to scrub in with the [HHS] team and help improve HealthCare.gov,' the blog post reads. 'We're also putting in place tools and processes to aggressively monitor and identify parts of HealthCare.gov where individuals are encountering errors or having difficulty using the site, so we can prioritize and fix them.' Other emergency measures being taken as part of what HHS calls a 'tech surge' include defining new test processes to prevent new problems and regularly patching bugs during off-peak hours. Still unclear is how long it will take to fix the site. As recently reported on Slashdot, that could be anywhere from 2 weeks to 2 months."

Comment: Bandwidth? (Score 1) 188

It's been an open secret for years now that the branches of the federal government tend to "bury" their budget inside of other allocations to hide them from outsiders, supposedly explaining the existence of $500 hammers and $1,000 toilets. Is the NSA also doing this, but with bandwidth rather than dollars? It might explain how suddenly the various ISPs are up in arms about bandwidth hogs and how a small percent are using up the majority of the bandwidth available on the network....

Hardware

Imagination Tech Announces MIPS-based 'Warrior P-Class' CPU Core 122

Posted by samzenpus
from the check-it-out dept.
MojoKid writes "Imagination Technologies has announced the first CPU based on its new version of the MIPS architecture. The new P5600 chip (codenamed Warrior) is a 32-bit CPU based on the MIPS Series 5 architecture and is designed to challenge companies like ARM in the embedded and mobile markets. Major features of the new chip include: support for 40-bit memory extensions, or up to 1TB of RAM, a 128-bit SIMD engine (Single Instruction, Multiple Data), and Hardware virtualization (MIPS R5 can virtualize other machines in hardware). The P5600 core is being touted as supporting up to six cores in a cache-coherent link, most likely similar to ARM's CCI-400. According to IT, the chip is capable of executing 3.5 DMIPs/MHz in CoreMark, which theoretically puts the P5600 on par with the Cortex-A15."

Comment: Re:Baah not this crap again (Score 1) 88

by bornagainpenguin (#45030629) Attached to: Ex-Red Hat Employee Matthew Garrett Comments On the State of XMir

Because none of that other UI desktop stuff exists on the Ubuntu repos. Nope, not at all. You're not allowed to install them even if they do.

You mean like Gnome 2.xx? Go ahead and try, see how far you get. Even trying to install the MATE fork results in a multitude of breakage all over the system, because of dependencies related to the increasingly ironic "Unity" desktop.

I've been looking for a replacement to Ubuntu for a while now and have begun moving on to Debian as a result with frequent stops here and there to try out other distros to see if any come close to working as well for me as earlier versions of Ubuntu did. So far the only one which does is Debian and even then there's all sorts of stuff that I have to relearn while missing the way Ubuntu used to handle it...

So yeah, 'forced' is an apt description. I (and many others) have been forced to make a decision between keeping our Gnome 2.xx desktop and Ubuntu. Sadly unlike those who still cling to Windows XP those of us who use Linux are unable to simply use the older versions because of how quickly bitrot sets in and how difficult it becomes to install applications.

Government

Shots Fired At US Capitol 608

Posted by timothy
from the no-no-you're-supposed-to-call-it-a-shutdown dept.
skade88 writes with a report that "The United States Capitol has been put on lockdown after shots were fired. Reports indicate a policeman was injured." From the story: "The FBI was responding to the unconfirmed reports of shots, and a helicopter landed in front of the Capitol. A message from the Capitol Police ordered anyone in a House office to 'shelter in place.' 'Close, lock and stay away from external doors and windows,' the message said." Doubtless more to come on this; watch this space for updates. Update: 10/03 19:08 GMT by T : ABC News reports that the shots followed an attempt to ram the White House gates; the police subsequently shot and killed the driver. Other than that the driver was a woman, the reports adds little detail. Update: 10/03 19:19 GMT by T : Reuters' U.S. Politics Live feed is currently collating many reports from the scene. Of note: the lockdown itself was brief, and has been lifted.
The Almighty Buck

Facebook Autofill Wants To Store Users' Credit Card Info 123

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the amazon-probably-patented-this dept.
cagraham writes "Facebook has teamed up with payment processors PayPal, Braintree, and Stripe, in an attempt to simplify mobile payments. The system allows Facebook members (who have turned over their credit and billing info) to click a 'Autofill with Facebook' button when checking-out on a mobile app. Facebook will then verify the details, and securely transfer a user's info over to the payment processing company. The move is likely aimed at gathering more data on user behavior, which can be used to increase the prices Facebook charges for mobile ads. Whether or not the feature takes off however, will depend almost entirely on how willing users are to trust Facebook with their credit card data."
Ubuntu

Ask Slashdot: Are We Witnessing the Decline of Ubuntu? 631

Posted by Soulskill
from the too-many-people-running-visigoth-linux dept.
jammag writes "'When the history of free software is written, I am increasingly convinced that this last year will be noted as the start of the decline of Ubuntu,' opines Linux pundit Bruce Byfield. After great initial success, Ubuntu and Canonical began to isolate themselves from the mainstream of the free software community. Canonical, he says, has tried to control the open source community, and the company has floundered in many of its initiatives. Really, the mighty Ubuntu, in decline?"

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