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Submission Summary: 0 pending, 289 declined, 73 accepted (362 total, 20.17% accepted)

+ - How 1980s hackers used bulletin boards to learn about heavy metal->

Submitted by hessian
hessian (467078) writes ""In the 80s, BBSes were the most important thing to the hacker world. They were where people met, talked, exchanged information," said legendary hacker Erik Bloodaxe, whose exploits with the hacker group Legion of Doom stirred many imaginations back in the day. "They were the central meeting places where you could find those people who actually cared about the same things you cared about."

"Most of the people in my peer group would be calling bulletin boards daily and were phone phreaks, so their long-distance calls were free. It was basically like being a regular on 4chan or Reddit, but thirty years ago. So we would talk about niche topics like metal that were very hard to find out about unless you, say, lived in a big city or college town and knew the right people/right places to go," said Grandmaster Ratte, a member of the Cult of the Dead Cow well-regarded in hacker circles. "Instead, you had access to people from all over the world, many of whom were very knowledgeable. I learned about tons of interesting subcultures via BBSs that I never would have known about until the Internet came along," he added."

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+ - Election candidate arrested over Churchill speech->

Submitted by hessian
hessian (467078) writes "A candidate in the European elections has been arrested after making a speech quoting from a book by Winston Churchill about Islam.

Paul Weston, chairman of the far right Liberty GB party, was making the speech on the steps of Winchester Guildhall, Hampshire, on Saturday, when a member of the public complained to police and he was arrested.

He had been reading from Churchill's book The River War, written in 1899 while he was a British army officer in Sudan."

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+ - An Interview With the Founder of the Oldest & Longest-Running Metal Website->

Submitted by hessian
hessian (467078) writes "One of – or the originator of metal on the Internet is Death Metal Underground which was started back in the 1980s on a bulletin board system. I had the opportunity of asking the founder, Brett Stevens, a few questions regarding the website’s history and the current state of heavy metal. We had a lot to talk about, about loads of interesting and controversial topics like elitism, sexism, the underground and why metal is not a form of “entertainment”."
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+ - How heavy metal influenced hackers->

Submitted by hessian
hessian (467078) writes ""[Y]oung hackers tend to imagine themselves as renegades living outside the law, so the music associated with that at the time was certainly heavy metal," Bloodaxe added when queried about the heavy metal connection. While he personally lived on a steady diet of Queensryche, Metallica, Iron Maiden and Judas Priest, he knew others had different tastes. And yet, there were still heavy metal connections.

"Most of the people in my peer group would be calling bulletin boards daily and were phone phreaks, so their long-distance calls were free. It was basically like being a regular on 4chan or Reddit, but thirty years ago. So we would talk about niche topics like metal that were very hard to find out about unless you, say, lived in a big city or college town and knew the right people/right places to go," said Grandmaster Ratte, a member of the Cult of the Dead Cow well-regarded in hacker circles. "Instead, you had access to people from all over the world, many of whom were very knowledgeable. I learned about tons of interesting subcultures via BBSs that I never would have known about until the Internet came along," he added."

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+ - "Piracy is stealing! Piracy is killing the ___ industry!"->

Submitted by hessian
hessian (467078) writes "I asked him how one went about trading software. He looked at me like total noob but he smiled anyway. “See those lists.” he said pointing to 8 foot tall listings of fan-folded paper hanging ceiling to floor behind most of the computers. “Just look down the list, find the disk number, go to the box and take the disk. Then copy it and put it back.”"
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+ - Tropical forests mitigate extreme weather events->

Submitted by hessian
hessian (467078) writes "Tropical forests reduce peak runoff during storms and release stored water during droughts, according to researchers working at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panama. Their results lend credence to a controversial phenomenon known as the sponge effect, which is at the center of a debate about how to minimize flood damage and maximize water availability in the tropics.

During nearly 450 tropical storms, a team of visiting scientists from the University of Wyoming measured the amount of runoff from pastureland, abandoned pastureland and forested land as part of a large-scale land-use experiment in the Panama Canal watershed initiated by STRI."

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+ - "Approximate computing" improves energy efficiency->

Submitted by hessian
hessian (467078) writes ""Computers were first designed to be precise calculators that solved problems where they were expected to produce an exact numerical value. However, the demand for computing today is driven by very different applications. Mobile and embedded devices need to process richer media, and are getting smarter – understanding us, being more context-aware and having more natural user interfaces. On the other hand, there is an explosion in digital data searched, interpreted, and mined by data centers."

(Hessian's note: what is interesting here is that this is how our brains work. There's an intelligent design and/or radical Darwinism argument in there somewhere.)"

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+ - Heavy metal shows piracy is not killing music, offers new business model->

Submitted by hessian
hessian (467078) writes "Despite being extensively pirated worldwide, Iron Maiden have managed to put themselves in the £10-20m for 2012. This means that despite the growing popularity of the band on social media, and the extensive and pervasive torrent downloading of the band’s music, books and movies, the band is turning a profit. This is in defiance of the past business model, and the idea that piracy is killing music. In fact, piracy seems to be saving music in Iron Maiden’s case.

One reason for this may be metal itself. It has a fiercely loyal fanbase and a clear brand and identity, even down to the uniform-style black tshirts that fans wear that differ only in band logo and art. The audience identifies with the genre, which stands in contrast to genericized genres like pop, rock and rap. It doggedly maintains its own identity and shuns outsiders. As a result, fans tend to identify more with their music, and place a higher value on purchasing it."

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+ - Open plan offices attract highest levels of worker dissatisfaction ->

Submitted by hessian
hessian (467078) writes "An open plan workplace, in which enclosed rooms are eschewed in favour of partitioned or non-partitioned desks arranged around a large room, are supposed to promote interaction between workers and boost teamwork.

However, a study of over 40,000 survey responses collected over a decade has found that the benefits for workers are quickly outweighed by the disadvantages."

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+ - I'm Thinking. Please. Be Quiet.->

Submitted by hessian
hessian (467078) writes "Then, around 1850, Schopenhauer pronounced noise to be the supreme archenemy of any serious thinker.

  His argument against noise was simple: A great mind can have great thoughts only if all its powers of concentration are brought to bear on one subject, in the same way that a concave mirror focuses light on one point. Just as a mighty army becomes useless if its soldiers are scattered helter-skelter, a great mind becomes ordinary the moment its energies are dispersed.

And nothing disrupts thought the way noise does, Schopenhauer declared, adding that even people who are not philosophers lose whatever ideas their brains can carry in consequence of brutish jolts of sound."

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+ - National Geographic says Redheads set for extinction->

Submitted by hessian
hessian (467078) writes "Because of the smaller percentage of redheads present in the population, it has reduced the chances considerably for the redheads to get redhead partners, so their offspring may or may not be a redhead. The redhead can produce a baby from a single redhead parent; the chances rise when both the parents are redheaded, however.
Some experts warn those with red hair could be gone as early 2060, but others say the gene can be dormant in the reproductive system for generations before returning.

Read more: http://www.digitaljournal.com/article/220229#ixzz2af4jDqnT"

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+ - The hacker approach to education->

Submitted by hessian
hessian (467078) writes "Even more than boring, education was about the wrong approach entirely. It set up cute little thought-experiments, taught you some simple versions, and then hit you with more challenging ones on the final. Since this is easy to defeat, teachers relied heavily on trickery and detail-based grading, which rewards those who essentially bury themselves in the classwork and memorize.

Zero relation to (a) actual problem solving and (b) having the skill of thinking itself. In fact, worse than zero relation; negative relation. Thinkers find this kind of environmental stultifying and try to escape it."

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+ - For China, hacking may be all about Sun Tzu and World War III->

Submitted by hessian
hessian (467078) writes "As I've had more time to study the behavior of the PRC, I've come to believe that China isn't necessarily gearing up to start World War III, but they are planning for how they might win it, should our two nations find ourselves in a shooting war.

Sun Tzu was a Chinese military strategist thought to have lived around 500 years before the modern era, and widely credited with authoring one of the foundational texts on warfare, The Art of War."

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+ - Why so many people–including scientists–suddenly believe in an after->

Submitted by hessian
hessian (467078) writes "Recent polls across the developed world are starting to tell an intriguing tale. In the U.S., religion central for the West, belief in heaven has held steady, even ticking upwards on occasion, over the past two decades. Belief in hell is also high, but even Americans show a gap between the two articles of faith—81 per cent believed in the former in 2011, as opposed to 71 per cent accepting the latter. Elsewhere in the Western world the gap between heaven and hell believers is more of a gulf—a 2010 Canadian poll found more than half of us think there is a heaven, while fewer than a third acknowledge hell. What’s more, monotheism’s two destinations are no longer all that are on offer. In December a survey of the 1970 British Cohort group—9,000 people, currently 42 years old—found half believed in an afterlife, while only 31 per cent believed in God. No one has yet delved deeply into beliefs about the new afterlife—the cohort surveyors didn’t ask for details—but reincarnation, in an newly multicultural West, is one suggested factor. So too is belief in what one academic called “an unreligious afterlife,” the natural continuation of human consciousness after physical death.

While most of the current bestselling accounts of afterlife experiences are recognizably Christian—at least in outline—signs of changing beliefs can be found in them too. Nor are the new travellers—who include a four-year-old boy and a middle-aged neurosurgeon—what religious skeptics would think of as the usual suspects. Colton Burpo, now 13, “died” 10 years ago from a ruptured appendix, and spent three minutes of earthly time in heaven—some of it in Jesus’s lap, some of it speaking with a miscarried sister whose existence he had never been told about—before being pulled back to Earth by his surgical team. Since 2010, when his father, Todd, a Nebraska minister, published his account of what Colton told him, Heaven is for Real has sold more than 7.5 million copies. If Colton’s story sounds like a contemporary take on an ancient Christian motif—“unless you become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 18:3)—the same can’t be said about Eben Alexander’s post-religious cosmic experience."

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