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Submission Summary: 0 pending, 14 declined, 2 accepted (16 total, 12.50% accepted)

+ - Microsoft investigates Windows 7 'screen of death'->

Submitted by
duguk
duguk writes "Microsoft has confirmed that it is investigating a problem described as the "black screen of death", which affects Windows 7 and reports suggest it affects Vista and XP too. The firm said it was looking into reports that suggest its latest security update, released on Tuesday 25 November, cause the problem. The error means that users of Windows 7 and earlier operating systems see a totally black screen after logging on to the system."
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Communications

+ - Twitumm - A delightful way to collect your Twitter->

Submitted by
duguk
duguk writes "I recently put together Twitumm as an alternative to Audioboo and Utterli — which is a easy way to record audio and post it to your Twitter. Like what Twitpic has done for pictures. Written as a small project in my spare time, with a very simple scheduled FFMpeg task, all written in PHP; running on Gentoo Linux. Record your message on your phone or PC in any format, upload it, and we'll put it up for streaming; and (if you want us to) post it to your Twitter profile too.

This isn't your usual advert, I'm making no profit out of this, but am adding new features all the time. Since I'm a huge open source enthusiast (and using Gentoo!), I'd love to know what Slashdot think."

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Windows

+ - AVG slaps Trojan label on Adobe Flash->

Submitted by
duguk
duguk writes "The Register reports: "AVG, the popular anti-virus package, has falsely identified Adobe Flash as potentially malicious. The snafu comes just days after AVG slapped a bogus Trojan warning on a core Windows component.

Users on AVG forums complained on Friday that Adobe Flash was detected by AVG's scanner as malicious, following a recent update. The gaffe follows an even more glaring screw-up when user32.dll, a core Windows component, was identified as a banking Trojan following a signature update issued on Sunday.""

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Government

+ - Home Secretary Jacqui Smith prints seized by No2ID->

Submitted by
duguk
duguk writes "The Home Secretary's fingerprints are missing, and being held by No2ID at an undisclosed location. Earlier today, No2ID General Secretary Guy Herbert told The Register, a water glass thought to have Jacqui Smith's fingerprints on it was 'borrowed' from a Social Market Foundation event where Smith was speaking. The venue of Smith's speech today was kept secret until the last minute for reasons of security.

Jacqui Smith is reported to have said "I don't want to disappoint users of this german website, but they're wasting their time. Having someone's fingerprints on a glass or even reproduced on an acetate won't get them very far. Our system will keep your fingerprints on a separate database from your personal details."

The first ID cards are due to ship to foreign nationals in less than three weeks, but the Home Secretary's dabs may be all over the country a little in advance of that. An image of the glass and her speech this morning can be found on order-order.com and the Register also has an article. On legal advice the NO2ID campaign plans to return the glass tomorrow to the speech venue."

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The Internet

+ - O2 UK mobile - Internet Blocked for some customers-> 1

Submitted by
duguk
duguk writes "It's been reported in a number of places that UK Mobile Phone company, O2 are blocking some internet ports for some customers.

It appears that although Contract customers on the mobile network are fully able to access email and SSH via their mobile phone, yet customers subscribed through 'Pay as you Go' (PAYG; a non-subscription service, paid up in front as credit), are only given WAP access, which only provides very basic HTTP access.

Essentially this means that anyone with a pay-in-front service agreement won't be able to access their email or use anything apart from basic HTTP, even though O2 are now selling and advertising the new Apple iPhone on PAYG and stating it will support "all the same features as contract customers".

It's been reported that on contacting O2, they state its a technical problem and one that can't be resolved, yet it's also been mentioned that their own O2 POP3 mail service does work, but access to any other service doesn't.

Are O2 right to restrict access for customers not on a fixed contract? Does your mobile phone company do the same thing? And are O2 advertising unfairly?"

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Microsoft

+ - MSN Search attacking sites?->

Submitted by
duguk
duguk writes "I keep (as in usually daily) see this in my logs:

65.55.210.11 — - [13/Jun/2008:00:22:34 +0100] "GET /robots.txt HTTP/1.1" 404 275
65.55.210.11 — - [13/Jun/2008:00:22:34 +0100] "GET /admin/ HTTP/1.1" 401 468

Oh, it's just someone seeing if my website is insecure, it's not insecure there — but have fun looking.

Wait a second. I'll just check that IP... it looks a bit weird.

65.55.210.11 resolves to msnbot-65-55-210-11.search.msn.com

OrgName: Microsoft Corp
OrgID: MSFT
Address: One Microsoft Way
City: Redmond
StateProv: WA
PostalCode: 98052
Country: US

Why is MSN Search Spider doing this?

I don't have an /admin/ folder, and NEVER have. I don't even have a robots.txt

MSN Admins won't reply to me, and the feedback forms are ignored.

Is there anything I can or should do about this?"

Link to Original Source
The Internet

+ - MSN Search attacking sites?->

Submitted by
duguk
duguk writes "I was just tailing my logs earlier (as you do), and I saw this in my log:

65.55.210.11 — - [13/Jun/2008:00:22:34 +0100] "GET /robots.txt HTTP/1.1" 404 275
65.55.210.11 — - [13/Jun/2008:00:22:34 +0100] "GET /admin/ HTTP/1.1" 404 468

Oh, it's just someone seeing if my website is insecure, it's not insecure — but have fun looking.

Wait a second. I'll just check that IP... it looks a bit weird.

65.55.210.11 resolves to msnbot-65-55-210-11.search.msn.com

OrgName: Microsoft Corp
OrgID: MSFT
Address: One Microsoft Way
City: Redmond
StateProv: WA
PostalCode: 98052
Country: US

Why is MSN looking at my /admin/ folder? Has anyone else had this?

For the record, I don't have an admin folder, and I don't have a robots.txt.

Any thoughts anyone?

I've contacted Microsoft, but naturally, they don't reply to anything :)"

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Government

+ - Filesharers petition Downing Street-> 1

Submitted by
duguk
duguk writes "From the recent article, UK ISPs To Face Piracy Deadline

The Register has done a two-page commentry on the new law and the Petition on the UK PM site (which I am the author of). From the article:

A petition urging the Prime Minister not to introduce "three strikes" legislation against illegal filesharing has made its debut on the 10 Downing Street website.
In their campaign for digital freedoms, peer to peer users are demanding that the government doesn't force the issue. But ironically, they are inadvertently wishing themselves a world where their online activities are governed by an opaque industry settlement, negotiated in secret.

From the petition:

'The government will soon tell internet service providers they will be hit with legal sanctions from April next year unless they take concrete steps to curb illegal downloads of music and films. Britain would be one of the first countries in the world to impose such sanctions. Service providers say what the government wants them to do would be like asking the Royal Mail to monitor the contents of every envelope posted.'

Whether or not you believe the contravertial UK petition site is workable, please sign the petition and contact your MP using WriteToThem.com.""

Link to Original Source
Privacy

+ - UK Petition - Keep ISPs as Common Carriers

Submitted by
duguk
duguk writes "From the recent article, UK ISPs To Face Piracy Deadline, I have started a UK Petition on the UK PM Petition site.

'The government will soon tell internet service providers they will be hit with legal sanctions from April next year unless they take concrete steps to curb illegal downloads of music and films. Britain would be one of the first countries in the world to impose such sanctions. Service providers say what the government wants them to do would be like asking the Royal Mail to monitor the contents of every envelope posted.'
I have started a petition on the UK PM Petition site. Whether or not you believe the contravertial UK petition site is workable, please sign the petition and contact your MP using WriteToThem.com."
Windows

+ - Apple Announce Safari for Windows->

Submitted by
duguk
duguk writes "Apple has launched a version of its web browser Safari for Windows, competing head to head with Microsoft's Explorer and Mozilla's Firefox. Download the beta from http://www.apple.com/uk/safari/download/.

Chief executive Steve Jobs said Apple "dream big" and wanted to expand the 4.9% market share Safari enjoys. He said Safari was "the fastest browser on Windows", saying it was twice as fast as Internet Explorer.

A test version of Safari 3 for Windows XP, Vista and Apple Macs running OSX, is available for download from the Apple website."

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Christmas Cheer

+ - Good moods prevent colds?

Submitted by
duguk
duguk writes "As most of you will probably end up ill over the winter season, it might be best to keep happy over Christmas. A new scientific study suggests that people who have a positive outlook are less likely to catch colds. Psychologist Sheldon Cohen and his colleagues at Carnegie Mellon University exposed more than 300 healthy adults to a cold virus and interviewed them about their emotional state. Those with "generally positive outlooks... reported fewer cold symptoms than were detected in medical exams.

From Science News:
"We need to take more seriously the possibility that a positive emotional style is a major player in disease risk," Cohen says.

Those who displayed generally positive outlooks, including feelings of liveliness, cheerfulness, and being at ease, were least likely to develop cold symptoms. Unlike the negatively inclined participants, they reported fewer cold symptoms than were detected in medical exams.

The new study, which appears in the November/December Psychosomatic Medicine, replicates those results and rules out the possibility that psychological traits related to a positive emotional style, rather than the emotions themselves, guard against cold symptoms. Those traits include high self-esteem, extroversion, optimism, and a feeling of mastery over one's life."

Keep happy and you might not get ill?"
PlayStation (Games)

+ - Man buys PS3, smashes it with sledgehammer

Submitted by
duguk
duguk writes "Two Canadians last week won their 15 minutes of fame by standing in line for two days to splash out CAD550 on a 20GB PS3s — only to take the machine straight out of the store and destroy it with a sledgehammer. "I did it for the thrill and to see people's expression," Victor Moukhortov, a 17-year-old part-time student, told the Ottawa Sun. "It was like a social experiment to see people's reaction.

More information including video here The pair told the newspaper they were planning to do the same with a Nintendo Wii on its 19 November release. It's not known whether they made good on their pledge."
Google

+ - Google buys YouTube for $1.65Bn

Submitted by
duguk
duguk writes "As rumoured last week, Google has agreed to purchase popular video sharing site YouTube for $1.65 billion in stock, the two companies announced after the close of the stock market Monday. The deal marks the largest acquisition for Google in the company's eight-year history. A potential deal had been rumored since late last week, prompting surprise from a number of industry watchers who failed to see what Google would gain from the purchase. However, the search giant says it will unite YouTube with its online advertising platform. More information is available on Google News"

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