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Comment: Re:Cam-tastic (Score -1, Flamebait) 146

The fact that drugs are illegal is the true problem.

Aren't they illegal for a reason? Maybe some drugs could be authorized. But addictive and health-destroy stuff are rightfully illegal. One might ask: Is it legal to prevent someone from destroying his own body? The problem is the highly addictiveness of the products. Someone may eventually want to stop taking the drug and be back to a normal life, but he just can't. The drug owns the user.

+ - White House Drone Incident Exposes Key Security Gap

Submitted by HughPickens.com
HughPickens.com (3830033) writes "The Washington Post reports that the intrusion by a recreational drone onto the White House lawn has exposed a security gap at the compound that the Secret Service has spent years studying but has so far been unable to fix. Commercial technology is available that can use a combination of sensitive radar and acoustic trackers to detect small drones, though coming up with an effective way to stop them has been more elusive. "To do something about the problem, you have to find it, you have to track it, you have to identify it and you have to decide what to do with it,” says Frederick F. Roggero. “But especially in an urban environment, it would be tough to detect and tough to defeat kinetically without shooting it down and causing collateral damage.” Most recreational drones, like the one that crashed Monday, weigh only a few pounds and lack the power to do much harm. Larger models that can carry payloads of up to 30 pounds are available on the market and are expected to become more common. The FAA imposes strict safety regulations on drones flown by government agencies or anyone who operates them for commercial purposes. In contrast, hardly any rules apply to people who fly drones as a hobby, other than FAA guidelines that advise them to keep the aircraft below 400 feet and five miles from an airport. “With the discovery of an unauthorized drone on the White House lawn, the eagle has crash-landed in Washington," says Senator Charles Schumer. "There is no stronger sign that clear FAA guidelines for drones are needed.""

+ - Childhood neglect erodes the brain->

Submitted by sciencehabit
sciencehabit (1205606) writes "In perhaps the most famous study of childhood neglect, researchers have closely tracked the progress, or lack of it, in children who lived as infants in Romania’s bleak orphanages and are now teenagers. A new analysis now shows that these children, who display a variety of behavioral and cognitive problems, have less white matter in their brains than do a group of comparable children in local families. The affected brain regions include nerve bundles that support attention, general cognition, and emotion processing. The work suggests that sensory deprivation early in life can have dramatic anatomical impacts on the brain and may help explain the previously documented long-term negative affects on behavior. But there’s some potential good news: A small group of children who were taken out of orphanages and moved into foster homes at age 2 appeared to bounce back, at least in brain structure."
Link to Original Source

+ - Why Coding is not the new literacy->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "There has been a furious effort over the past few years to bring the teaching of programming into the core academic curricula. Enthusiasts have been quick to take up the motto: "Coding is the new literacy!" But long-time developer Chris Granger argues that this is not the case: "When we say that coding is the new literacy, we're arguing that wielding a pencil and paper is the old one. Coding, like writing, is a mechanical act. All we've done is upgrade the storage medium. ... When we say that coding is the new literacy, we're arguing that wielding a pencil and paper is the old one. Coding, like writing, is a mechanical act. All we've done is upgrade the storage medium."

He further suggests that if anything, the "new" literacy should be modeling — the ability to create a representation of a system that can be explored or used. "Defining a system or process requires breaking it down into pieces and defining those, which can then be broken down further. It is a process that helps acknowledge and remove ambiguity and it is the most important aspect of teaching people to model. In breaking parts down we can take something overwhelmingly complex and frame it in terms that we understand and actions we know how to do.""

Link to Original Source

+ - As real Flash patches go out, fake ones hit thousands of Facebook users->

Submitted by River Tam
River Tam (3926677) writes "On the heels of two real Flash Player security updates being distributed by Adobe Systems this week, hackers are spreading a fake update for the media player via a scam on Facebook that has exposed at least 5,000 users to the threat.

Fake Flash Player update through a three-day Facebook scam beginning Friday. The hackers are targeting the social network’s users by tagging would-be victims in photos that purport to be racy videos."

Link to Original Source

+ - Oppo's selfie contest for a chance to win an Oppo N3->

Submitted by Parneet Singh
Parneet Singh (3890833) writes "Oppo’s selfie contest are becoming as popular as the selfie. Oppo’s Selfie Showdown asks you to post your favorite, creative or unusual selfie.
The company’s photography flagship has a mechanized rotating camera so selfies get the first-class treatment and are taken with the 13MP camera and dual-LED flash. The winners will win a brand new Oppo N3 each week.

http://www.gadgetsofworld.com/..."

Link to Original Source

+ - Google Explains Why WebView Vulnerability Will Go Unpatched On Android 4.3->

Submitted by MojoKid
MojoKid (1002251) writes "If you're running Android 4.3 or earlier, you're pretty much out of luck when it comes to a baked-in defense against a WebView vulnerability that was discovered earlier this month by security analyst Tod Beardsley. The vulnerability leaves millions of users open to attack from hackers that choose to exploit the security hole. WebView is a core component of the Android operating system that renders web pages. The good news is that the version of WebView included in Android 4.4 KitKat and Android 5.0 Lollipop is based on Chromium and is not affected by the vulnerability. The bad news is that those running Android 4.3 and earlier are wide open, which means that 60 percent of Android users (or nearly one billion customers) are affected. What's most interesting is that Google has no trouble tossing grenades at the feet of Microsoft and Apple courtesy of its Project Zero program, but doesn't seem to have the resources to fix a vulnerability that affects a substantial portion of the Android user base."
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+ - Oceans Hotter Year-On-Year Since 1994

Submitted by BarbaraHudson
BarbaraHudson (3785311) writes "From the we-are-so-screwed dept Some people claimed that global warming had "paused", that it ended in 1998, or that the past 15 years or so had not seen a change in the energy of the Earth. Ocean warming data from NOAA makes it clear there never was a pause to global warming, there never was a halt.

The energy stored within the ocean (which is 90% or more of the total "global warming" heat), increased significantly every year since 1994.

More here and here."

+ - Understanding the mechanisms behind highly focused online ads->

Submitted by Taco Cowboy
Taco Cowboy (5327) writes "So you go to a website, or fb, or anywhere, and an online ad appears on your screen

Annoying or not, many of those ads have been purposely selected — almost tailor-made — for our consumption

And behind all these, lighting fast auctions of the slots for tailor-made ads are going on, all the time, and "Behavioral Targeting" is the name of the game

While traditional cookies can be blocked or erased, forms of cookie-less tracking are taking place all the time. “Fingerprinting” records specifics of a user’s device, and it’s next to impossible for most people to avoid sending information to advertisers, publishers and the bewildering array of specialist firms that serve them

Such information can be exploited in real-time computerized auctions for the right to show online ads to individuals. The algorithm-driven auction process takes place on electronic marketplaces in the hundredths of a second after an internet user clicks a link to visit a website. The winner’s ad appears by the time the site has fully loaded. Millions of individual auctions can take place every second

Advertisers see something like their holy grail: the right ad served to the right person at the right time – for the right price. The real-time bidding process allows ad campaigns to be fine-tuned through instant feedback. In a technique called Retargeting, desirable consumers can be followed around the internet, for example by placing ads on other sites they are known to frequent

Yes, the ads are already there waiting for you, at the sites that you haven't go, yet!

As internet-connected TVs take hold, the kind of highly focused ads now booming on the web will be possible there too. Tracking people better via mobile devices, and the rise of the “internet of things” as fridges and other appliances get IP addresses, will bring even more data into people’s digital exhaust for the industry to draw on."

Link to Original Source

+ - Stress level on the rise for IT workers->

Submitted by Taco Cowboy
Taco Cowboy (5327) writes "49% of IT workers say they’re closer to burning out now compared with five years ago

Triggers for IT workplace stress include a lack of exercise, feeling understaffed and job insecurity

The survey also revealed freelance workers tend to be more relaxed, with more than half ( 55% ) believing freelancers’ autonomy to change location and set their own hours reduces stress"

Link to Original Source

+ - Intel to form a stylus alliance->

Submitted by Taco Cowboy
Taco Cowboy (5327) writes "Last year Apple filed for ten smart pen related patents and earlier this month a rumor surfaced from a prominent analyst claiming that Apple was aiming to introduce a smart pen accessory for Apple's 12" + iPad Pro later this year. On Wednesday Microsoft introduced a new digital whiteboard display system for the enterprise called the Surface Hub that accepts input with a Surface pen working in sync with their OneNote software. Their digital pen was emphasized in their Surface Hub patent that we reported on yesterday. Today there's news that Intel is forming a new Stylus alliance that will be formally announced in February. The first standards-compliant stylus is set to roll out in Q3. It's sure beginning to look as if 2015 will be the year that the stylus of old undergoes its biggest overhaul to date

The current situation regarding the stylus input for touchscreen devices is that every IC designer has its own stylus specifications. Users often find themselves unable to use styluses across different products as well as brands

Intel intends to change that

The chip-making giant is pushing for a standardised Stylus device, that works with all types of displays, be it a notebook ,a smartphone or a tablet

To get a deeper insight into what a standardised stylus would me, Take a Note 4’s stylus for example. You can take notes, dial numbers, highlight text, create your own doodles and still do numerous things that cannot be explained in the length of an article. However, with a standardised stylus, you could do all that, on a device with different config., display, processor or memory

Several chip designers have been invited to take part in the alliance and provide their inputs. Some of them are Atmel, Synaptics and Elan Microelectronics (EMC). Intel has also invited Asustek computer as well as Waltop, the stylus makers that Intel has invested in

It is obvious that this move is directed towards the tablet markets at first. A stylus as an accessory to a 12-inch device makes a lot of sense. The phablet market will benefit too. Nexus 6, iPhone 6 Plus and many of the big screen phones come without a stylus. Actually, only the Note series by Samsung comes with an in-built stylus. The big displays are much easier and fun to use with a stylus

Intel plans to announce the members of the alliance and a draft of the standard in February at the earliest and the official platform will start operating in April or May, with the alliance's first product is expected to launch in the third quarter"

Link to Original Source

+ - Is Pascal an Underrated Programming Language? 6

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "In the recent Slashdot discussion on the D programming language, I was surprised to see criticisms of Pascal that were based on old information and outdated implementations. While I’m sure that, for example, Brian Kernighan’s criticisms of Pascal were valid in 1981, things have moved on since then. Current Object Pascal largely addresses Kernighan’s critique and also includes language features such as anonymous methods, reflection and attributes, class helpers, generics and more (see also Marco Cantu’s recent Object Pascal presentation). Cross-platform development is fairly straightforward with Pascal. Delphi targets Windows, OS X, iOS and Android. Free Pascal targets many operating systems and architectures and Lazarus provides a Delphi-like IDE for Free Pascal. So what do you think? Is Pascal underrated?"

Comment: Re:No! One reason: Verbosity sucks (Score 1) 6

by hcs_$reboot (#48898001) Attached to: Is Pascal an Underrated Programming Language?
Ok, but saying "One reason: verbosity sucks" tends to make that argument the most important one. While there are many differences between C and Pascal, and verbosity is certainly not the most important one (unless you're paid inversely proportional to the numbers of characters you write in a program!). Pascal is chosen in schools for instance, because of it's more rigid structure to discipline programs writing, its "pointers" are type safe, pointers arithmetic is not allowed etc... etc... I did program in Pascal and C, and verbosity was certainly not a concern - the rest was! (I prefer C). Would that be Cobol, OTOH....

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