Slashdot is powered by your submissions, so send in your scoop


Forgot your password?

Slashdot videos: Now with more Slashdot!

  • View

  • Discuss

  • Share

We've improved Slashdot's video section; now you can view our video interviews, product close-ups and site visits with all the usual Slashdot options to comment, share, etc. No more walled garden! It's a work in progress -- we hope you'll check it out (Learn more about the recent updates).


Comment: Re:Word to the wise (Score 1) 200

by drewhk (#34356922) Attached to: What Software Specification Tools Do You Use?

"Capturing requirements is pretty useful and having a repeatable, reproducible way of doing this is also useful. Need to take over some other person's 3 year old steaming pile of spaghetti? Requirements are a good start. Need to replace a home-grown system with a market solution? Requirements are pretty useful in negotiating a contract with the vendor (unless you don't mind the vendor nailing your balls to their invoice because you couldn't actually tell them what you needed their software to do)."

Yes, IF your contractor is COMPETENT ENOUGH to give reasonable requirements. In reality this rarely happens. And while you can point a finger at them, that their requirements were stupid, they will think you just deceived them. They will pay you, but they will not come back.

Comment: Re:Word to the wise (Score 1) 200

by drewhk (#34356912) Attached to: What Software Specification Tools Do You Use?

I agree with you except:

The list of "institutional causes" can be addresses through process

This is FALSE. In fact, "institutional causes" are ALWAYS lack of communication, lack of REAL teamwork, lot of ass-cover, responsibility avoidance, bureaucracy and fear. This is exactly CAUSED by such processes.

Comment: Re:$SUBJECT (Score 2, Insightful) 266

by drewhk (#34328298) Attached to: Open-Source Social Network Diaspora Goes Live

If I understand correctly, you can run your own Diaspora server, is it right?

Well, then there must be a protocol to communicate between Diaspora servers. If that protocol is sound, then I will just write my OWN server with all the security features I need.

Do we know anything about the security of the protocol? I am more interested in that not in the security of the webapp.


+ - Microsoft to acquire Unix copyrights->

Submitted by IGnatius T Foobar
IGnatius T Foobar (4328) writes "As part of Attachmate's acquisition of Novell, Novell announced it would sell certain intellectual property assets to CPTN Holdings LLC, a consortium of technology companies organized by Microsoft Corporation, for $450 million in cash. Since the SCO lawsuit determined that it is Novell, not SCO, who owns the Unix copyrights, this means that now Microsoft owns them. Is it time for the Linux world to brace for another round of lawsuits?"
Link to Original Source

+ - A Cyber-War of Words: China's Internet Hijack->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "While China's hijack of thousands of Internet destinations in April may (or may not) be the opening salvo in cyber-war / espionage, the debate over the hijack has turned into an escalating war of words between dueling researchers and even the Chinese government. After McAfee hyped the hijack as diverting a "15% of all Internet traffic", Arbor returned with statistics showing the hijack diverted at most a few hundredths of a percent. Not to be outdone, McAfee quickly retorted that Arbor measured the wrong ISPs. On Friday morning, the Chinese government also entered the fray denying the well-documented Internet hijack had ever even occurred.

This morning, Arbor countered with additional statistics re-validating the limited scope of the hijack. Though, Arbor Network's Labovitz noted traffic volume has little to do with the threat posed by a hijack: "If the intent was to hijack traffic for a small set of sensitive US government machines, then we might see TCP connections diverted for only a few machines in a man-in-the-middle attack, relatively low volumes of diverted traffic, and thousands of bogus routes announced as a smokescreen... In other words, basically close to what we observed on April 15th.""

Link to Original Source

+ - The software that failed to compete with Windows->

Submitted by harrymcc
harrymcc (1641347) writes "When Microsoft shipped Windows 1.0 back in November 1985--it turned 25 on Saturday--it wasn't clear that its much-delayed windowing add-on for DOS was going to succeed. After all, it was a late arrival to a market that was already teeming with ambitious competitors. A quarter-century later, it's worth remembering the early Windows rivals that didn't make it: Visi On, Top View, GEM, DESQview, and more."
Link to Original Source

+ - 'Secret' Spy Satellite Largest Satellite Ever Made-> 1

Submitted by digitaldc
digitaldc (879047) writes "A huge unmanned rocket carrying a secret spy satellite for the United States roared into space Sunday, delivering what one official has touted as "the largest satellite in the world" into orbit.

The giant booster — a Delta 4 Heavy rocket — blasted off at 5:58 p.m. ET from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida, carrying a classified payload for the U.S. National Reconnaissance Office.

"This mission helps to ensure that vital NRO resources will continue to bolster our national defense," Air Force Brig. Gen. Ed Wilson, commander of the 45th Space Wing, said after the successful launch.

The satellite, called NROL-32, launched after a series of delays from technical glitches. The most recent glitch, a pair of faulty temperature sensors, thwarted a Nov. 19 launch attempt.

The exact purpose of the new spy satellite NROL-32 is secret, but one NRO official has hinted at the huge size of the reconnaissance spacecraft."

Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:patents/capita (Score 2, Insightful) 302

by drewhk (#34221026) Attached to: Tide of International Science Moving Against US, EU

There simply is no good metric. You have to judge the quality of the papers and authors by reading them. Tht is not the answer accounting departments want to hear, though.

Yeah, and this mechanism hinders deep research. The problem is that the most interesting research subjects are also the riskiest ones. You cannot publish papers on failures, therefore you are highly pressed to go for the low hanging fruit. This means that journals will be full of the (n+1)th refinement of a well known algorithm/technology/formula/theorem.

We need more scientific risk-taking.

Nobody's gonna believe that computers are intelligent until they start coming in late and lying about it.