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Censorship

Iceland Considers Internet Porn Ban 684

Posted by timothy
from the frigid-climate dept.
Onymous Hero writes "With the printing and distribution of pornography already banned in Iceland, further measures to stop internet porn are being considered by Iceland's Interior Minister Ogmundur Jonasson. From the article: "Iceland is taking a very progressive approach that no other democratic country has tried," said Professor Gail Dines, an expert on pornography and speaker at a recent conference at Reykjavik University. "It is looking a pornography from a new position — from the perspective of the harm it does to the women who appear in it and as a violation of their civil rights.""
The Military

Designing DNA Specific Bio-Weapons 227

Posted by samzenpus
from the poison-just-for-you dept.
Hugh Pickens writes writes "The Atlantic reports that experts in genetics and microbiology are convinced we may be only a few years away from the development of advanced, genetic bio-weapons able to target a single human being based on their DNA. The authors paint a scenario of the development of a virus that causes only mild flu in the general population but when the virus crosses paths with cells containing a very specific DNA sequence, the sequence would act as a molecular key to unlock secondary functions that would trigger a fast-acting neuro-destructive disease that produces memory loss and, eventually, death. The requisite equipment including gene sequencers, micro-array scanners, and mass spectrometers now cost over $1 million but on eBay, it can be had for as little as $10,000. According to Ronald Kessler, the author of the 2009 book In the President's Secret Service, Navy stewards gather bedsheets, drinking glasses, and other objects the president has touched—they are later sanitized or destroyed—in an effort to keep would-be malefactors from obtaining his genetic material. However no amount of Secret Service vigilance can ever fully secure the president's DNA, because an entire genetic blueprint can now be produced from the information within just a single cell. How to protect the President? The authors propose open-sourcing the president's genetic information to a select group of security-cleared researchers who could follow in the footsteps of the computer sciences, where 'red-team exercises,' are extremely common practices so a similar testing environment could be developed for biological war games. 'Advances in biotechnology are radically changing the scientific landscape. We are entering a world where imagination is the only brake on biology,' write the authors. 'In light of this coming synbio revolution, a wider-ranging relationship between scientists and security organizations—one defined by open exchange, continual collaboration, and crowd-sourced defenses—may prove the only way to protect the president.'"

Comment: NBC deserves it. (Score 5, Insightful) 373

by gblues (#40843169) Attached to: US Viewers Using Proxies To Watch BBC Olympic Coverage

In my opinion, NBC hasn't gotten nearly enough shit over their treatment of the opening ceremony. Constant chattering, inane commentary, and the absolutely insulting audacity to cut to commercial during the 7/7 London Bombing memorial.

The coverage of the games themselves hasn't been too great, either. I'm not going to bitch about a tape delay because that's just a fact of life when the games are 7 hours ahead of local time. But when results are spoiled by fucking promotional commercials just minutes ahead of the event in question, that's just incompetence.

So, screw NBC. I hope someday the BBC allows foreigners to pay for access to its content without having to do VPN hacks. I know I'd subscribe in a heartbeat (hello, Doctor Who Series 7).

Comment: Re:It's not about content - emails from Apple (Score 2) 332

Indeed, sounds like a classic mistake of "uploading the wrong version," i.e. her updated book is in location A and she is uploading an out-of-date copy in location B. The copy in location A may very well be free of direct links to Amazon.com, but if that's not the copy she's uploading, she's going to run into the same problem.

Next question: do you want to be taking publishing advice from someone who can't successfully upload the right copy of her eBook?

Comment: Hey Milton Bradley, here's your new cash cow! (Score 1) 138

Alright M-B,

Sue Zynga over "Words with Friends" again, but this time instead of claiming that they're copying your game, just claim copyright on the letters 'A', 'B', 'C', etc. Want to make a clone? Use Chinese characters or the Greek alphabet or something. No English letters for you!

Comment: Re:It's inevitable (Score 1) 990

by gblues (#37835216) Attached to: The Real Job Threat

Machines don't get sick, they don't take holidays, and they don't complain. Most important to business is the fact that they're cheaper.

Machines don't get sick? Tell that to the infrastructure in Iran taken down by stuxnet, or to the thousands of cars with critical system failures due to normal wear-and-tear (blown head gaskets, leaky hoses, etc). The danger of automation is that machines can make large, expensive mistakes very quickly, so you risk getting eaten alive by both maintenance costs and "oops" factors.

The Internet

US Intelligence Mining Your Social Network Data 240

Posted by samzenpus
from the government-friend-list dept.
bs0d3 writes "U.S. Intelligence has hired social scientists to mine the vast resources of the Internet — Web searches and Twitter messages, Facebook and blog posts, the digital location trails generated by billions of cellphones. They intend to use this info to track sociological laws of human behavior — enabling them to predict political crises, revolutions and other forms of social and economic instability. Privacy advocates are deeply skeptical of the project, saying it reminds them of Total Information Awareness, a 9/11 Pentagon program that proposed hunting for potential attackers by identifying patterns in vast collections of public and private data: telephone calling records, e-mail, travel data, visa and passport information, and credit card transactions. In a recent budget proposal, the defense agency argues that its analysis can expose terrorist cells and other groups by tracking their meetings, rehearsals and sharing of material and money transfers."

Comment: Online Pass is the biggest scam of current gen (Score 1) 271

by gblues (#37614098) Attached to: Sony Bringing PSN Pass To All First-Party Games

Online Pass/Sony Pass is nothing more than a money grab.

EA and Sony want you to believe that a used copy of the game incurs them additional costs in addition to whatever costs were generated by the first buyer. Is this true?

Suppose N is the set of copies of any given game that have been sold to customers. When a copy is traded in to GameStop, the cardinality of N drops by 1 by definition. When that used copy is sold again, the cardinality of N increases by 1, again by definition. A game cannot be classified as "used" if it has not previously been in N. Therefore, a used sale does not change the cardinality of N, and so the costs incurred by EA or Sony do not change. It costs them the same to support |N| copies of the game, regardless of who owns those copies.

Supporting Online Pass or Sony Pass is supporting nothing more than corporate greed.

Star Wars Prequels

Ask Slashdot: What To Do In SW:TOR For Just 3 Days? 211

Posted by timothy
from the spread-wild-oats dept.
rodrigoandrade writes "I've been invited to participate in the beta testing program for SW:TOR. However, EA's giving out 3-day passes to most testers. A few people are receiving passes for longer periods. Mine will be from Friday 5am through Monday 12am (CST) (i.e. Sunday evening). Since it's a frakking 10GB download (almost 2GB for video alone) I'll use for only 3 days, I'd like to make the most out of it. If you're an experienced beta tester, please post some tips travel-guide style on what I should do, quests I should take, places to visit, etc. TYIA. May the Force be with you!"

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