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Comment An interesting book about Sanitation (Score 1) 471

If anyone is interested in Sanitation (possibly a niche topic, I realise) they could do worse than read The Big Necessity by Rose George.

It's amazing some of the things we take for granted in the West - for instance the teenage "untouchable" girls in India whose job is to literally scrape up other people's shit and dispose of it.

Comment This is a shame.. (Score 1) 286

..I recently upgraded to Sky HD+, but other than that my Tivo was still perfectly usable (and very, very useful) after about 10 years of usage. Very, very rarely crashed - less than once per year and a much better UI than my new Sky box.

TBH, it's one of the most reliable pieces of hardware I've ever owned. I wish my PC, Phone, etc could be as reliable.

Comment More than 3.99 to keep running (Score 3, Insightful) 159

I have a couple of points to make:

1. People shouldn't assume that this means that shutting the websites would have only saved £3.99 from the BBC budget. Given large orgs and the cost mulitpliers for internally supported servers, it could well be tens of thousands of pounds per year.

2. Instead of people like Ben Goldacre boo-hooing and expecting the government (which the BBC is effectively an arm of) to save the sites, he could have shelled out the £4 and done it himself. Could it be that - GASP - sometimes governments aren't the best way to get things done? :-O

Comment Not a bad living.... (Score 2, Interesting) 78

My neighbour runs a company that does WEEE (the European Electrical Recycling directive) recycling for a large area of the UK.

When the commodities boom was happening just before the Beijing Olympics, they were recycling electrical goods for free as they were making so much money on the reclaimed copper, gold etc.

Now that the metals prices have dropped, they charge the people that they are recycling for (councils, large corporates etc) so they still make money.

Comment Re:Worth every penny ... (Score 1) 377

I like slashdot a lot more when it was just real geeks with a clue, you know, before all the angsty idiots who happened to be socially inept and own a computer started calling it home as though they were geeks too.

Yeah, I can see how it would piss off old timers with single figure slashdot IDs like you.


Your Feces Is a Wonderland of Viruses 211

sciencehabit writes "Thanks to an anlaysis of fecal samples from four sets of Missouri-born female identical twins and their mothers, researchers have concluded that human guts harbor viruses as unique as the people they inhabit; the viral lineup differs even between identical twins. Even more surprising? These viruses may be doing good work inside of us."
It's funny.  Laugh.

ESRB Exposes Emails of Gamers Who Filed Privacy Complaints 75

simrook writes, "Many people filed privacy complaints with the ESRB over Blizzard's recent (and afterward recanted) move to require the display of users' real life names on Blizzard's official forums. 961 of those complainants had their email addresses exposed in the ESRB's response." The response itself didn't go into the organization's thoughts on Blizzard's plan, but they explained to the Opposable Thumbs blog that anonymity isn't a huge concern to them, as long as users are given the opportunity to opt out. "The role of the ESRB Privacy Online program is to make sure that member websites—those that display our seal on their pages — are compliant with an increasingly complex series of privacy protection laws and are offering a secure space for users to interact and do business online. ... But online privacy protection doesn't necessarily mean the same thing as anonymity. It's about making sure that websites collecting personal information from users are doing so not only in accordance with federal regulations but also with best practices for protecting individuals' personal information online."
Social Networks

"David After Dentist" Made $150k For Family 234

It turns out recording your drugged child pays pretty well. 7-year-old David DeVore became an overnight sensation when his father posted a video of his ramblings after dental surgery. To date that video has made the DeVore family around $150,000. Most of the money came from YouTube, but the family has made $50k from licensing and merchandise. From the article: "The one seemingly minor decision to make the video available all over the Internet set off a whirlwind of changes for the DeVore family. Within just four days, 'David After Dentist' received 3 million views on YouTube and the younger David quickly became an Internet celebrity. His father quit his job in residential real estate (did we mention they live in Florida?), and the family started selling T-shirts featuring cartoon drawings of their son post-dental surgery."

A rock store eventually closed down; they were taking too much for granite.