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+ - Hacked Sony emails reveal that Sony had pirated books about hacking->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes: Sony has done a lot of aggressive anti-piracy work in their time, which makes it that much funnier that pirated ebooks were found on their servers from the 2014 hacks that just went on to WikiLeaks. Better yet, the pirated books are educational books about hacking called "Inside Cyber Warfare" and "Hacking the Next Generation" from O'Reilly publishers.
Link to Original Source

+ - Slashdots stops sucking effective immediately!!

Submitted by GrabbaTheButt
GrabbaTheButt writes: In a complete 180 degree turn of events, the overlords at Dice have decided to end all Slashvertisments, kill Beta and end all stories that have no place on this site.

When asked why such a radical change? Management said "we have decided to start listening to our user community and stop thinking straight out of our asses".

+ - Eyedrops provide Night vision to see up to 50 meters in Darkness.

Submitted by rtoz
rtoz writes: A group of scientists in California have successfully created eye drops that temporarily enable night vision.

They use mixture of Insulin and a chemical known as "Ce6" (Chlorin e6) as eye drop for getting the night vision. It allows the user to view the objects clearly up to 50 meters in darkness.

This chemical "Ce6" is found in some deep-sea fish and is often used to treat cancer and night blindness.

The Ce6 solution will start work in as little as one hour after getting injected into eyes using micropippette. And the Night vision effect will be lasting for “many hours” afterwards, and the test subject's eyesight will become normal the next day.

The organisation "Science for the Masses" has released a paper that detailed the experiment in their website.

+ - Amazon Requires Non-Compete Agreements...For Warehouse Workers

Submitted by Rick Zeman
Rick Zeman writes: Amazon, perhaps historically only second to NewEgg in the IT nerdling's online shopping heart, not only has treated their warehouse workers to appalling working condtions, but they're also making them sign a non-compete agreement for the privilege. Excerpt from the agreement:
During employment and for 18 months after the Separation Date, Employee will not, directly or indirectly, whether on Employee’s own behalf or on behalf of any other entity (for example, as an employee, agent, partner, or consultant), engage in or support the development, manufacture, marketing, or sale of any product or service that competes or is intended to compete with any product or service sold, offered, or otherwise provided by Amazon (or intended to be sold, offered, or otherwise provided by Amazon in the future)....

+ - Pixar Releases Free Version of RenderMan

Submitted by jones_supa
jones_supa writes: A year ago the animation studio Pixar promised its RenderMan animation and rendering suite to eventually become free for non-commercial use. This was originally scheduled to happen in the SIGGRAPH 2014 computer graphics conference, but things got delayed. Nevertheless, today Pixar is releasing the free version into wild. Free non-commercial RenderMan can be used for research, education, evaluation, plug-in development, and any personal projects that do not generate commercial profits. This version is fully featured, without a watermark or any kind of artificial limits. Featuring Pixar's new RIS technology, RenderMan delivers extremely fast global illumination and interactive shading and lighting for artists. The software is available for Mac, Linux and Windows. In conjunction with the release, Pixar has also launched a new RenderMan Community site where users can exchange knowledge and resources, showcase their own work, share assets such as shaders and scripts, and learn about RenderMan from tutorials.

+ - Bring On The Boring Robots->

Submitted by malachiorion
malachiorion writes: After a successful 6-month pilot, Savioke's "butler bots" are heading to hotels around the country. These are not sexy, scary, or even technically impressive machines. But they were useful enough, over the course of their 2000 or so deliveries, to warrant a redesign, and a larger deployment starting in April. Savioke's CEO had some interesting things to say about the pilot, including the fact that some 95 percent of guests gave the robot a 5-star review, and only the drunks seemed to take issue with it. Plus, as you might expect, everyone seemed to want to take a damn selfie with it. But as small as the stakes might appear, highly specialized bots like this one, which can only do one thing (in this case, bring up to 10 pounds of stuff from the lobby to someone's door) are a better glimpse of our future than any talk of hyper-competent humanoids or similarly versatile machines. This is my post for Popular Science about why the rise of the boring robot is good news for robotics.
Link to Original Source

+ - Why Not Utopia? Mark Bittman on basic income and increasing automation->

Submitted by Paul Fernhout
Paul Fernhout writes: Mark Bittman wrote an op-ed in the New York Times suggesting a basic income as a solution to increasing automation leading to job loss. He concludes: "We have achieved a level of social equality barely imagined by progressives 50 years ago, but economic equality has gotten much worse. No one knows what the world will look like in 50 years, but if we resign ourselves to dystopia — in which capital has full control, as it nearly does now — we'll surely have one. Let's resolve to build something better. In the long run we know that we'll make the transition from capitalism to some less destructive and hopefully more just system. Why not begin that transition now? If there is going to be a global market that will further enrich capitalists, there must be guarantees that the rest of the population can at least afford housing and food. And things can be even better than that: We'll have the robots work for us."
Link to Original Source

+ - SPAM: Facebook user to test how fb suicide prevention tool act, lands in mental asylum

Submitted by abhishekmdb
abhishekmdb writes: Shane Tusch faked his suicide in an attempt to test the authenticity of Facebook suicide prevention tool and got detained for 72 hours

Facebook has rolled out a set of tools to keep a check on its users who are having suicidal tendencies and prevent these users from suicidal attempts. In case some user is having suicidal thoughts and mentions that in the Facebook posts and if a friend of that user reports it to Facebook then a third party will immediately review the post and Facebook would lock the suicidal user’s account and the user will be made to read Facebook’s suicide prevention materials.

Link to Original Source

+ - Police fight to keep use of Stingrays secret

Submitted by v3rgEz
v3rgEz writes: The New York Times looks at how local police are fighting to keep their use of cell phone surveillance secret, including signing NDAs with Stingray manufacturer Harris Corp and claiming the documents have been lost. It's part of a broader trend of local agencies adopting the tactics of covert intelligence groups as they seek to adopt new technology in the digital era.

+ - The Church of TED

Submitted by HughPickens.com
HughPickens.com writes: Megan Hustad writes in the NYT that while it’s not exactly fair to say that the TED conference series and web video function like an organized church, understanding the parallel structures is useful for conversations about faith, how susceptible we humans remain to the cadences of missionary zeal, and how the TED style with its promise of progress, is as manipulative as the orthodoxies it is intended to upset. According to Hustad, a great TED talk is reminiscent of a tent revival sermon, a gathering of the curious and the hungry. "A persistent human problem is introduced, one that, as the speaker gently explains, has deeper roots and wider implications than most listeners are prepared to admit," says Hustad. "Once everyone has been confronted with this evidence of entropy, contemplated life’s fragility and the elusiveness of inner peace, a decision is called for: Will you remain complacent, or change?" TED talks routinely present problems of huge scale and scope — we imprison too many people; the rain forest is dying; look at all this garbage; we’re unhappy; we have Big Data and aren’t sure what to do with it — then wrap up tidily and tinily. Do this. Stop doing that. Buy an app that will help you do this other thing. "I never imagined that the Baptists I knew in my youth would come to seem mellow, almost slackers by comparison," concludes Hustad. "Of course they promoted Jesus as a once-and-done, plug-and-play solver of problems — another questionable approach."

A mathematician is a device for turning coffee into theorems. -- P. Erdos

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