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Comment: Re:How curious... (Score 3, Insightful) 174

This isn't the first time Swartz has spidered a site in order to download the content hosted there. In 2009, he went after the PACER system which hosts court records. While those are public documents, they're behind a per-page paywall. His python script was probably reused from before, just s/pacer.gov/jstor.org/g. See: http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2009/10/swartz-fbi/

When you're the creator of the Open Library project, liberating a few million articles from behind a rather expensive paywall is, at the very least, quite circumstantially indicative of what your intentions might be. While I personally think access to such document repositories for scientific journals is priced way too high, most people can go to public or university libraries to do any research they might want to do. Breaking into a wiring closet, getting MIT's access to JSTOR cut off for days, spoofing your MAC address, getting shut off, spoofing your MAC address again, and still continuing on downloading is not the way to go about trying to affect change the way he wanted to. Smart kid buried under an avalanche of dumb.
NASA

Launching Frequently Key To NASA Success 145

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the more-is-better dept.
teeks99 writes "Even NASA could benefit from the 'Launch Often' idea that is frequently referred to in the software development community. However, in NASA's case, the 'launch' is a bit more literal. Edward Lu, writing in the New York Times, points out that by lowering the consequences of launch failure, and making frequent launches available to engineers, NASA could open up a new wave of innovation in space exploration. If there were weekly launches of a rocket, there would be many opportunities for new ideas to be tried out in communications, remote sensing, orbital debris mitigation, robotic exploration, and even in developing technology for human spaceflight. Another benefit would be that the rockets would be well understood, which would improve reliability."
Christmas Cheer

Networked Christmas Tree Controlled By Twitter 38

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the ho-ho-ho dept.
An anonymous reader writes "What's Twitter good for? How about crowd sourcing control of your Christmas tree. Dangerous Prototypes built an open source, networked Christmas tree that you can control from Twitter. Send a color or hexadecimal color code to @tweet_tree, then watch the color change on the live video stream. This project is based on an updated version of the open source business card size web server covered previously."
Handhelds

+ - Diamond-like carbon (DLC) coating for gadgets

Submitted by
An anonymous reader writes "Nokia has developed a diamond-like coating material made from coal. The coating is very tough, but also smooth to the touch. It's also conductive and therefore antistatic, so it does not attract dirt easily.

To make the material electric current is fed through coal graphite. This creates plasma, which is directed towards a plastic casing by high-voltage electrodes. The coal ions penetrate the surface and bond to form an amorphous, diamond-like coating less than 100 nanometres thick. The process works at room temperature, meaning even cheap plastics can be coated this way. Here's the patent application."
Security

+ - Zone-H Defaced By Saudi Hackers

Submitted by
Pro-SEO
Pro-SEO writes "In a story which could be described as delicious irony, the repository of defaced websites, Zone-H, Has been defaced by a group of Saudi hackers.

zone-h is a website which collects and collates information on what sites have been defaced, who defaced them and their motives. So it shouldn't have come as much of a surprise that they were on someones hit list themselves. The hackers, Devil Hacker & Unix Web, Struck at sometime on the 27/1/07 (uk) and replaced the zone-h homepage with a classic defacement suggesting zone-h "see more security next time"."
OS X

+ - Mac OS X on non-Apple hardware?

Submitted by Lank
Lank (19922) writes "According to an article on CNN Money, Parallels and VMware can not only run Windows on Macs, but also allow OS X on non-Apple computers! Serguei Beloussov, the CEO of SWsoft, parent company to Parallels, insists that this ability is not deliberate but rather a byproduct Intel's built-in virtualization technology. "I wonder what Steve Jobs is going to do, because there is so much pressure to run Mac OS on non-Macs. There's no technical reason not to do it. He's so proprietary about everything, yet it could be a very strategic move for him to make," CEO of VMware Diane Greene said. But I feel the decision still belongs to Jobs."
Google

+ - Google Auto-Suggests Social Security Number

Submitted by
Dotnaught
Dotnaught writes "In a story about Google's recent security lapse with its anti-phishing blacklist, InformationWeek reports some odd behavior from the Google Toolbar. "Entering two keywords related to Social Security numbers — call them 'x' and 'y' so as not to compound the problem — into the Google Toolbar will produce a keyword search suggestion in the form 'x y John Doe.' Selecting the suggested search terms and name, as might be expected, generates a search results page with the named person's Social Security number. A spokesperson for Google said the company's engineers didn't have an immediate explanation for the auto-generated suggestion, that it was probably an aberration and that the suggestion would likely be removed.""
HP

+ - Pretexting Now Illegal

Submitted by
Investigative Lead
Investigative Lead writes "Pretexting, better known as lying, is now illegal thanks to a law signed by President Bush last week. While the new law doesn't address many of the other times private investigators may lie in order to gather private information, it at least stops them from gathering telephone records under false pretenses. The bill itself was introduced late last year, but only finally got the necessary support after the HP spying scandal broke, where they used PIs on their own board members in order to identify press leaks. Anyone trying some of those techniques now could end up with a maximum of 10 years in prison."
Space

+ - Comet McNaught Visible in Broad Daylight

Submitted by AbsoluteXyro
AbsoluteXyro (1048620) writes "As the amateur astronomers among us already know, Comet McNaught has been gracing the early morning and late evening skies... as it approaches the Sun, some estimate it has the potential to become 40 times brighter than Venus, or a magnitude of -8.8! In fact, it has recently been reported at SpaceWeather.com that Comet McNaught is now visible in broad daylight! From the article: "It's fantastic," reports Wayne Winch of Bishop, California. "I put the sun behind a neighbor's house to block the glare and the comet popped right into view. You can even see the tail.""
Upgrades

+ - In Soviet Russia, Underwear Cleans You

Submitted by mikeinvt
mikeinvt (666669) writes "Finally, the fabric technology we've all been waiting for. Sponsored by the U.S. Air Force, a group has fabricated t-shirts and underwear that don't need to be washed for weeks on end. Quoting the article, which quotes Jeff Owens, one of the scientists who made the fabric:
"During Desert Storm, most casualties were from bacterial infections — not accidents or friendly fire. We treated underwear for soldiers who tested them for several weeks and found they remained hygienic. They also helped clear up some skin complaints."

Nanoparticles are bonded to the fabric that repel water, oils and bacteria. Suddenly, the laundry services at Google are less appealing."

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