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Earth

World Population Could Reach Nearly 11 Billion By 2100 322

Posted by timothy
from the paging-dr-malthus dept.
vinces99 writes "A new analysis shows that world population could reach nearly 11 billion by the end of this century, according to a United Nations report issued June 13. That's about 800 million, or about 8 percent, more than the previous projection issued in 2011. The change is largely because birth rates in Africa have not declined as quickly as had been expected, according to Adrian Raftery of the University of Washington's Center for Statistics and the Social Sciences. The U.N. estimates use statistical methods developed at the center. The current African population is about 1.1 billion and it is now expected to reach 4.2 billion, nearly a fourfold increase, by 2100, Raftery said."
Security

Popular Wordpress Plug-in Caught Spamming Is Put On Probation 76

Posted by Soulskill
from the stop-or-i'll-say-stop-again dept.
chicksdaddy writes "Social Media Widget, a free plug-in for the WordPress blogging platform with more than a million downloads, was restored to WordPress's official plugin directory on Thursday, days after it was found injecting WordPress websites with spam links to web sites offering Pay Day Loans. In a post on a support forum for Social Media Widget (SMW), Samuel Wood, a WordPress administrator, said that WordPress was willing to give SMW and its owner a second chance after he claimed to have been the victim of a contract developer gone rogue. 'Naturally we do take a very hard line on spam, and obviously an author putting malicious code into a plugin is enough grounds for us to bring down the ban hammer,' Wood wrote on Friday. 'But there are natural circumstances where an author may not be at fault.' SMW appears to be such a case. It is one of the 20 most popular WordPress add-ons and allows WordPress web site operators to include links to their other social media accounts. Brendan Sheehan, the owner of SMW, said, 'We trusted the wrong people with our plugin code and take full responsibility. We are a marketing company at heart and are not actually developers, so in order to provide major updates and improvements, we had to seek outside help. Some of these people deceived us and abused our trust and naivety...We will not make this mistake again.' Wood said the folks at Wordpress decided to accept that story — but that they're watching SMW closely. 'Basically, the current maintainer is not a professional programmer, and put his trust in the wrong freelancers to do the coding work for him...We'll be watching the plugin for changes,' he said. 'The plugin is back up for now, and as long as it stays clean, it's fine.'"
Robotics

400 Battle Bots Fight, Toss Enemies At RoboGames Competition 58

Posted by Soulskill
from the why-are-we-training-them-to-fight dept.
Andre writes "The 6th annual RoboGames were held in San Francisco last weekend. They welcomed a horde of 400 non-sentient, metallic warriors to do violent battle — against each other, of course. This army of remote-controlled and autonomous combat robots, along with walking humanoids, soccer 'bots, sumo 'bots and even androids that do kung-fu, was put to the test. Among the big winners was Canadian-made 'Ziggy' — one of the combatants in the 340-pound, super-heavyweight division (the biggest division) — who took home a gold medal for the fourth year in a row. The bionic brute proved its might against its final opponent, the 'Juggernaut,' by tossing it around like an empty pop can (and promptly making a mockery of its name) using a pneumatic flipper. Ziggy's newly-improved weapon results in unwanted (but totally cool) free-flying lessons for its opponents. At full power, the flipper can launch an opponent to the arena ceiling."
Government

White House Ditches YouTube 204

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the but-i-thought-google-bought-and-paid-for-the-US-already dept.
An anonymous reader writes to tell us that in an apparent response to privacy complaints, the White House has quietly moved off of YouTube as a method for serving the President's weekly video address. Choosing instead to use a Flash-based solution and Akamai's content delivery network, this comes just days after YouTube began to roll out their own new policies regarding privacy of visitors.
Image

How To Be A Geek Goddess 349 Screenshot-sm

Posted by samzenpus
from the Ramia-goddess-of-corn-chips-power-strips-and-motherboards dept.
stoolpigeon writes "The geek world is dominated by those of the male persuasion. For those of us working in a technology related field, or who spend a considerable amount of time pursuing high tech leisure, we usually find women to be in the minority. I've seen considerable discussion over the years on how to change this imbalance but I think it is safe to say that right now that it remains. Many women are interested in using technology, they just don't want to dive in to quite the same depth. Or they may not be interested in the way most men approach it. Columnist and tech-writer Christina Tynan-Wood has attempted to come to their rescue with her book How To Be A Geek Goddess." Read below for the rest of JR's review.
GNU is Not Unix

How Many Open Source Licenses Do You Need? 276

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the he-should-start-an-organization-or-six dept.
jammag writes "Bruce Perens, who wrote the original licensing rules for Open Source software in 1997, notes that there are a sprawling 73 open source licenses currently in existence. But he identifies an essential four — well, actually just two — that developers, companies, and individuals need. In essence, he cuts through the morass and shows developers, in particular, how to protect their work. (And yes, he favors GPL3 over GPL2.) For his own coding work, he's fond of the 'sharing with rules' license, which stays true to the Open Source ethos of shared code yet also enables him to get paid by companies who use it in their commercial products."
Software

Apple Claims That Jail-Breaking Is Illegal 610

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the never-underestimate-the-power-of-greed dept.
rmav writes "Apple has finally made a statement about jail-breaking. They try to sell the idea that it is a copyright infringement and DMCA violation. This, despite the fact (as the linked article states) that courts have ruled that copying software while reverse engineering is a fair use when done for purposes of fostering interoperability with independently created software. I cannot help but think that the recent flood of iPhone cracked applications is responsible for this. Before that, Apple was quietly ignoring the jailbreak scene. Now, I suppose that in the future we may only install extra applications on our iPhones as ad hoc installs using the SDK, and if we want turn-by-turn directions, tethering, and the like, we have to compile these apps by ourselves? Maybe we should go and download the cydia source code and see what we can do with it."
Privacy

In Finland, Nokia May Get Its Own Snooping Law 284

Posted by kdawson
from the expectation-of-privacy dept.
notany writes "Nokia may be too big a company for Finland (a country of 5 million people). It seems that Nokia's lobbyists can push an unconstitutional law through the legislature at will. After Nokia was caught red-handed, twice, snooping on its employees (first 2000-2001, second 2005), the company started a relentless lobbying and pressure campaign against politicians to push what the press has been calling 'Lex Nokia' or the 'snooping law.' This proposed law would allow employers to investigate the log data of employees' e-mails, legalizing the kind of snooping that Nokia had engaged in. Parliament's Constitutional Law Committee asked the opinions of eight legal experts, and all opined that the proposed law is unconstitutional. The committee ignored all the advice and declared the proposal constitutional." An anonymous reader adds a link to an AFP story reporting that Nokia has threatened to pull out of Finland unless the law passes.
Windows

32bit Win7 Vs. Vista Vs. XP 641

Posted by kdawson
from the getting-a-feel-for-it dept.
An anonymous reader writes "ZDNet's Adrian Kingsley-Hughes tested the latest Win7 build against XP and Vista and came to a surprising conclusion: Win7 performs better than the other 2 OSs in the vast majority of the 23 tasks tested. Even installation. 'Rather than publish a series of benchmark results for the three operating systems (something which Microsoft frowns upon for beta builds, not to mention the fact that the final numbers only really matter for the release candidate and RTM builds), I've decided to put Windows 7, Vista and XP head-to-head in a series of real-world tests...'" This review shows only a 1-2-3 ranking for each test, so there's no sense of the quantitative level of improvement.

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