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Submission + - Programmer creates online library with every book that has/could be written (

An anonymous reader writes: The digital Library of Babel contains all possible permutations that can exist in 3,200 characters in the English language. Because of that, it contains all possible conversations you could have, have had, or will have, all possible scenarios of your death, and even this entire article.

The digital “The Library of Babel” is based on the short story by Jorge Borges. The library houses all the possible combinations of the letters of the alphabet, plus some punctuation, in 410 page long novels. The librarians are incredibly excited about the endless possibilities the library presents to them. The tomes essentially contain every one’s death, birth, all written books, and all yet un-written books. The problem with all of this, however, is the enormity of the library.

Article: http://www.relativelyinteresti... and the library itself

Submission + - How Steve Jobs Outsmarted Carly Fiorino writes: Carly Fiorina likes to boast about her friendship with Apple founder Steve Jobs but Fortune Magazine reports that it turns out Carly may have outfoxed of by Apple's late leader. In January 2004, Steve Jobs and Carly Fiorina cut a deal where HP could slap its name on Apple’s wildly successful iPod and sell it through HP retail channels but HP still managed to botch things up. The MP3 player worked just like a regular iPod, but it had HP's logo on the back and in return HP agreed to continue pre-loading iTunes onto its PCs. According to Steven Levy soon after the deal with HP was inked, Apple upgraded the iPod, making HP’s version outdated and because of Fiorina’s deal HP was banned from selling its own music player until August 2006. "This was a highly strategic move to block HP/Compaq from installing Windows Media Store on their PCs," says one Apple source. "We wanted iTunes Music store to be a definitive winner. Steve only did this deal because of that."

In short, Fiorina’s “good friend” Steve Jobs blithely mugged her and HP’s shareholders. By getting Fiorina to adopt the iPod as HP’s music player, Jobs had effectively gotten his software installed on millions of computers for free, stifled his main competitor, and gotten a company that prided itself on invention to declare that Apple was a superior inventor. And he lost nothing, except the few minutes it took him to call Carly Fiorina and say he was sorry she got canned. Levy concludes that Carly's experience with her "good friend" Steve Jobs is not an encouraging precedent for a person who wants to deal with Vladimir Putin. "It could not have been otherwise, really, because Steve Jobs totally outsmarted the woman who now claims she can run the United States of America."

Submission + - Firefox's Secret Requests 1

An anonymous reader writes: Unlike older versions of Firefox, more recent versions will make a request to a destination server just by hovering over a link. No CSS and no javascript needed. Try it for yourself. Disable CSS and javascript in Firefox and fire up iftop, hover over some links and watch the fun begin. There once was a time when you hovered over a link to check the "real link" before you clicked on it. Well no more. Just looking at it makes a 'secret request'.

Submission + - Yes, androids do dream of electric sheep

hmckee writes: Thought this was a really interesting story from the Guardian: "Google sets up feedback loop in its image recognition neural network — which looks for patterns in pictures — creating hallucinatory images of animals, buildings and landscapes which veer from beautiful to terrifying"

Submission + - Sourceforge staff takes over a user's account and wraps their software installer ( 11

An anonymous reader writes: Sourceforge staff took over the account of the GIMP-for-Windows maintainer claiming it was abandoned and used this opportunity to wrap the installer in crapware. Quoting Ars:

SourceForge, the code repository site owned by Slashdot Media, has apparently seized control of the account hosting GIMP for Windows on the service, according to e-mails and discussions amongst members of the GIMP community—locking out GIMP's lead Windows developer. And now anyone downloading the Windows version of the open source image editing tool from SourceForge gets the software wrapped in an installer replete with advertisements.

Submission + - All Your Content Will Belong to PayPal (

Anita Hunt (lissnup) writes: Following last year's announcement from eBay,PayPal has contacted UK (maybe other) users by email, alerting them to the upcoming separation of the two companies from 1 July 2015, and drawing attention to changes in PayPal T&Cs. A new clause on Intellectual Property asserts: “When providing us with content or posting content (in each case for publication, whether on- or off-line) using the Services, you grant the PayPal Group a non-exclusive, worldwide, perpetual, irrevocable, royalty-free, sublicensable (through multiple tiers) right to exercise any and all copyright, publicity, trademarks, database rights and intellectual property rights you have in the content, in any media known now or in the future. Further, to the fullest extent permitted under applicable law, you waive your moral rights and promise not to assert such rights against the PayPal Group, its sublicensees or assignees. You represent and warrant that none of the following infringe any intellectual property right: your provision of content to us, your posting of content using the Services, and the PayPal Group’s use of such content (including of works derived from it) in connection with the Services.”
Any users that don't agree are invited to close their account "without incurring any additional charges"

Submission + - False color astronomy images lead to truer pictures than ever 1

StartsWithABang writes: When you look out at the nebulae in the night sky — especially if you’re seeing them with your eye through a telescope for the first time — you might be in for a big surprise. These faint, fuzzy, extended objects are far dimmer, sparser and more cloud-like than almost anyone expects. Yet thanks to some incredible image processing, assigning colors to different wavelengths and adjusting the contrast, we can make out detailed structures beyond what even your aided eye could ever hope to perceive. Here's how the magic happens, and what it teaches us.

Submission + - Slashdot's new interface could kill what keeps Slashdot relevant (

An anonymous reader writes: Technology Lab / Information Technology
Slashdot’s new interface could kill what keeps Slashdot relevant
Flashy revamp seeks to draw new faces to the community—at the cost of the old.

by Lee Hutchinson — Feb 12 2014, 6:55pm E

        Web Culture


In the modern responsive Web Three Point Oh Internet, Slashdot stands like a thing frozen in time—it's a coelacanth stuck incongruously in an aquarium full of more colorful fish. The technology news aggregator site has been around since 1997, making it positively ancient as websites are reckoned. More importantly, Slashdot's long focus on open source technology news and topics has caused it to accrete a user base that tends to be extremely technical, extremely skilled, and extremely opinionated.

That user base is itself the main reason why Slashdot continues to thrive, even as its throwback interface makes it look to untrained eyes like a dated relic. Though the site is frequently a source of deep and rich commentary on topics, the barrier for new users to engage in the site's discussions is relatively high—certainly higher than, say, reddit (or even Ars). This doesn't cause much concern to the average Slashdot user, but tech job listing site (which bought Slashdot in September 2012, along with Sourceforge and a number of other digital properties) appears to have decided it's time to drag Slashdot's interface into the 21st century in order to make things comfortable for everyone—old and new users alike.

Submission + - Groklaw on ten years of Linux legalities: (

An anonymous reader writes: Ten years ago, SCO decided to sue IBM and started a series of legal attacks on Linux. Their cases were pathetically weak, but CIOs and CFOs didn't know that. Thanks to paralegal turned legal journalist, Pamela "PJ" Jones and her Website Groklaw, executives who wanted to know what was really what with SCO's multitude of lawsuits soon learned of the FUD behind SCO's claims. SCO and its silent backer Microsoft hope for profits and slowing down Linux's corporate success would come to nothing, and SCO ended up in bankruptcy.

Submission + - Prenda Law sues bloggers and commentors critical of copyright trolling ( 1

An anonymous reader writes: Prenda Law, the notorious copyright trolling law firm that has allegedly committed fraud and identity theft and sued tens, if not thousands of BitTorrent users, is now suing two anti-copyright troll bloggers and anonymous commentors who routinely criticize Prenda for libel and defamation. Also named as a defendant is a defense attorney who often defends copyright troll victims (original legal complaint). In what can only be described as an overly broad subpoena, Prenda Law is also demanding the IP Addresses from Wordpress of everyone who has ever accessed the blogs and for a time period of more than two years. Although originally filed in state court, the lawsuit has since been removed to federal court by defense counsel.

Submission + - Gnome Founder Miguel de Icaza Moves To Mac ( 1

TrueSatan writes: Miguel de Icaza, via his blog, has declared his intention to move to the Apple Mac platform stating his main reasons as being, "To me, the fragmentation of Linux as a platform, the multiple incompatible distros, and the incompatibilities across versions of the same distro were my Three Mile Island/Chernobyl."

Reaction to his announcement includes from Jonathan Riddell of Blue Systems/Kubuntu.

Given Miguel de Icaza past asociation with Microsoft (CodePlex Foundation) and the Free Software Foundation's founder Richard Stallman's description of de Icaza as a "traitor to the free software community" this might be seen as more of a blow to Microsoft than to GNU/Linux.


Submission + - Crowdsourcing Mars Images (

alancronin writes: In conjunction with BBC's recent astronomy television program: Stargazing Live comes a citizen science project to analyze images of Mars. Zooniverse has setup a site that allows people to explore the surface of Mars in incredible detail with pictures taken from the HiRISE (High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment) camera on board the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. HiRISE can image Mars with resolutions of 0.3 m/pixel (about 1 foot), resolving objects below a meter across.

Submission + - Astronomers decode two-faced Saturnian moon Iapetu (

An anonymous reader writes: Scientists believe a combination of space dust and temperature may explain the mysterious two-toned 'yin-yang' appearance of the strange Saturnian ice moon Iapetus.The moon's leading face in its orbit around Saturn is as dark as soot, while the trailing face is bright as ice. The puzzle is compounded by the fact that the dividing line between the bright and dark faces is amazingly sharp.

Submission + - Scaling algorithm bug in Photoshop/GIMP ( 1

Wescotte writes: There is an important error in most photography scaling algorithms. All software tested have the problem: The Gimp, Adobe Photoshop, CinePaint, Nip2, ImageMagick, GQview, Eye of Gnome, Paint and Krita. Also three different operating systems were used: Linux, Mac OS X and Windows. These exceptions have subsequently been reported: the Netpbm toolkit for graphic manipulations, the developping GEGL toolkit, 32 bit encoded images in Photoshop CS3, the latest version of Image Analyzer, the image exporters in Aperture 1.5.6, the latest version of Rendera, Adobe Lightroom 1.4.1, Pixelmator for Mac OS X, Paint Shop Pro X2 and the Preview app in Mac OS X starting from version 10.6.

Photographs that have been scaled with these software have been degradated. The degradation is often faint but probably most pictures contain at least an array where the degradation is clearly visible. I suppose this happens since the first versions of these software, maybe 20 years ago.


Submission + - 1980's Computers in Education (

xzvf writes: As someone that went to high school in the 80's, this newsletter from 1980 is a blast from the past. An interview with Microsoft talks up it's BASIC language product and predicts voice control of computers in five years. Advertisements for Compute magazine which is about to go monthly and an article about a computer "network" in Minnesota that connects some fax machine looking terminal to a central computer over telephone lines. Lots of Atari, TI and RadioShack news too.

Its a reminder from 30 years ago that we are still not using technology effectively in education.

Quark! Quark! Beware the quantum duck!