Become a fan of Slashdot on Facebook


Forgot your password?
Back for a limited time - Get 15% off sitewide on Slashdot Deals with coupon code "BLACKFRIDAY" (some exclusions apply)". ×

Comment Re:Apple Desktop Bus (Score 1) 161

I've always been fond of Apple's ADB. It seemed like the closest thing to USB as far as I know of, at least compared to IBM's PS/2. ADB seemed more versatile than PS/2, which was easy to mistake the PS/2 mouse port with the PS/2 keyboard port. The only other versatile port I can think was SCSI with it's ability to chain devices.

Yeah, this. Surprised more people haven't mentioned this. ADB was pretty far ahead of its time, considering it debuted with .. what, the Mac SE? Apple IIGS? I forget which of those came out first, but certainly way back in the day.

More to the point... All this discussion about USB adoption without really mentioning what made it actually take off. The Original iMac. Only someone like Steve Jobs could get the company to agree to drop essentially ALL legacy support at once and force people into this newfangled thing. Apple missed the boat on CD-RW's for a few years, but the iMac really ignited widespread USB adoption on both sides of the divide.


Swarm Robotics Breakthrough Brings Pheromone Communication To AI ( 20

An anonymous reader writes: Computer scientists at the University of Lincoln have invented a reliable, low-cost system which replicates in robots the pheromone-based communication behind insect swarms. Using off-the-shelf equipment including an LCD screen and a USB camera, the team has proposed what they call COS-phi, or Communication System via Pheromone. The artificial pheromone trails are traced visually onto the screen. As soon as a bot picks up on the path, it is forced to follow the leader.
The Military

Air Force Hires Civilian Drone Pilots For Combat Patrols ( 65

schwit1 writes: For the first time, civilian pilots and crews now operate what the Air Force calls "combat air patrols," daily round-the-clock flights above areas of military operations to provide video and collect other sensitive intelligence. Civilians are not allowed to pinpoint targets with lasers or fire missiles. They operate only Reapers that provide intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, known as ISR, said Air Force Gen. Herbert "Hawk" Carlisle, head of Air Combat Command.

Comment Re: Like systemd (Score 1) 461

Not one post on any board has cited an actual problem they have encountered and how it damaged their infrastructure or workflow. I am not for or against systemd but, with the general consensus of the posters, there seems to be few real world problems with it and instead, a lot whining about how systemd breaks "their" precious Linux world view.

I just had the latest (of many) systemd issues with a RHEL update to 7.2 hosing boot. Seems simple enough to fix, right? Downgrade to the previous kernel and figure things out. That hung too, though. Couldn't get systemd to boot into rescue more, or even emergency mode. It would simply "hang" for no reason. Booted from ISO and chroot'd in and things seemed fine enough. No logs of course, so nothing useful to diagnose with.

Three hours later, after my umpteenth boot attempt, I find that on some random virtual console I couldn't get to until I manually tweaked the grub line, systemd was deciding that that a selinux policy file was corrupt and halting... but it only displayed that after you WAIT 600 SECONDS for some other startup function to timeout. No log entry, no diagnosis until then.

Thanks, guys. Way to improve upon shell scripts.

Input Devices

Silent Ear and Tongue-Tracking Tech Can Control Wearables ( 10

An anonymous reader writes: Scientists at Georgia Tech are developing silent speech systems that can enable fast and hands-free communication with wearable devices, controlled by the user's tongue and ears. As seen with open source project Eyedrivomatic, the researchers want to apply the technology to provide a device control solution for people who are disabled. They suggest it could also be used by those working in a loud environment in need of a quiet way to communicate with their wearable devices. The prototype involves a combination of tongue control with earphone-like pieces each installed with proximity sensors to map the changing shape of the ear canal. Every word manipulates the canal in a different way, allowing for accurate recognition.

Docker Turns To Minecraft For Server Ops ( 93

dmleonard618 writes: A new GitHub project is allowing software teams to construct software like Legos. DockerCraft is a Minecraft mod that lets administrators handle and deploy servers within Minecraft. What makes this project really interesting is that it lets you navigate through server stacks in a 3D space. "In today's world, we wanted to focus more on building. Minecraft has emerged as the sandbox game of the decade, so we chose to use that as our visual interface to Docker," Docker wrote in a blog.

Inside the Mission To Europa ( 106

An anonymous reader writes: Ars Technica details the political and engineering battles being waged to make it possible for NASA to land a probe on Jupiter's moon Europa. They have new information about mission plans; it sounds ambitious, to say the least. "First, the bad news. Adding a lander to the Clipper will require additional technical work and necessitate a launch delay until late 2023. At that time, the massive Space Launch System rocket NASA is developing could deliver it to Jupiter in 4.6 years. Once there, the lander would separate from the Clipper, parking in a low-radiation orbit.

The Clipper would then proceed to reconnoiter Europa, diving into the harsh radiation environment to observe the moon and then zipping back out into cleaner space to relay its data back to Earth. Over a three-year period, the Clipper would image 95 percent of the world at about 50 meters per pixel and three percent at a very high resolution of 0.5 meters per pixel. With this data, scientists could find a suitable landing site. ...The JPL engineers have concluded the best way to deliver the lander to Europa's jagged surface is by way of a sky crane mechanism, like the one successfully used in the last stage of Curiosity's descent to the surface of Mars. With four steerable engines and an autonomous system to avoid hazards, the lander would be lowered to the moon's surface by an umbilical cord."

Comment SecureCRT (Score 1) 352

I've never understood the appeal of Quake-style drop-downs. The last thing I need is quick command at chat speed, and, as a server sysadmin there's usually nothing interesting on my laptop/desktop to begin with -- I'm administering servers that are out there doing stuff.

For Windows (and OS X, finally), I've gotten accustomed to SecureCRT's interface and tend to find it the most comfortable. SecureFX is a little less reliable on the Mac (I prefer CyberDuck or another more Mac-like client), but its integration with CRT's keystore makes it super convenient.


Ask Slashdot: What Terminal Emulator Do You Use? 352

An anonymous reader writes: Although I spend a considerable amount of my time at work using shell commands and other text-based applications, I've never really given much thought to what terminal emulator I use. A recent article over on rounded up their picks for their seven favorite terminals, but I'm still unsure if it really matters which one I pick. Do you have a favorite terminal emulator, and if so, what makes it your favorite? I'm interested in hearing about that "one killer feature" that really sold you on your choice.
The Almighty Buck

Dorms For Grownups: a Solution For Lonely Millennials? 412 writes: Alana Semuels writes in The Atlantic that Millennials want the chance to be alone in their own bedrooms, bathrooms, and kitchens, but they also want to be social and never lonely.That's why real estate developer Troy Evans is starting construction on a new space in Syracuse called Commonspace that he envisions as a dorm for Millennials. It will feature 21 microunits, each packed with a tiny kitchen, bathroom, bedroom, and living space into 300-square-feet. The microunits surround shared common areas including a chef's kitchen, a game room, and a TV room. "We're trying to combine an affordable apartment with this community style of living, rather than living by yourself in a one-bedroom in the suburbs," says Evans. The apartments will be fully furnished to appeal to potential residents who don't own much (the units will have very limited storage space). The bedrooms are built into the big windows of the office building—one window per unit—and the rest of the apartment can be traversed in three big leaps. The units will cost between $700 and $900 a month. "If your normal rent is $1,500, we're coming in way under that," says John Talarico. "You can spend that money elsewhere, living, not just sustaining."

Co-living has also gained traction in a Brooklyn apartment building that creates a networking and social community for its residents and where prospective residents answer probing questions like "What are your passions?" and "Tell us your story (Excite us!)." If accepted, tenants live in what the company's promotional materials describe as a "highly curated community of like-minded individuals." Millennials are staying single longer than previous generations have, creating a glut of people still living on their own in apartments, rather than marrying and buying homes. But the generation is also notoriously social, having been raised on the Internet and the constant communication it provides. This is a generation that has grown accustomed to college campuses with climbing walls, infinity pools, and of course, their own bathrooms. Commonspace gives these Milliennials the benefits of living with roommates—they can save money and stay up late watching Gilmore Girls—with the privacy and style an entitled generation might expect. "It's the best of both worlds," says Michelle Kingman. "You have roommates, but they're not roommates."

Comment Re:Nailed it (Score 1) 291

I sometimes wonder what the world would look like if developers were financially liable for software security failures.

It'd look like the cost analysis of the current US healthcare industry. The fear of a malpractice lawsuit is rampant, which leads to ass-covering every which way imaginable, and fees and insurance costs that match.

I'm not saying malpractice lawsuits are bad, but that level of scrutiny is what we're all paying for out of our pockets.

Comment Re:I have no debt and a hefty savings account (Score 1) 386

I have no debt and a hefty savings account

According to lenders this makes me a credit risk.

Would you trust someone with a double margarita if this was the first time they've ever drinked?

The best predictor for responsible use of credit given today is whether you've responsibly used credit in the past. Not using credit is not "responsible use of credit" any more than being 10 years sober is "responsible use of alcohol".... it's non-use of alcohol, and, in fact, is a pretty clear hint that maybe you *shouldn't* trust that person with alcohol.

Yes, it sucks if you're being super cautious about any possibility of taking on any debt and you're otherwise a reasonable person, but Catch-22's are hardly limited to credit scoring.


TV Networks Open Neuroscience Labs To Improve Their Shows and Ads ( 109

An anonymous reader writes: NBCUniversal's recently-opened Orlando neuroscience lab is trying to develop methods of delivering advertisements related to the scene in the show preceding them, such as delivering a food advertisement directly after a scene which has been shown to make test-subjects hungry. Viacom is building a lab right now to take electroencephalagrams of viewers while they watch. "And ratings firm Nielsen Holdings, which just bought neuroscience firm Innerscope Research earlier this year, is adding facial coding and biometrics to its labs, which currently conduct eye tracking and perform EEGs." NBC doesn't trust what viewers say when asked for their opinion on shows. They want to use science to determine which scenes trigger an emotional response, whether the viewer acknowledges it or not.

The hardest part of climbing the ladder of success is getting through the crowd at the bottom.