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Submission + - Uber Promotes Kitten Escort Service (forbes.com)

retroworks writes: No, it's not the Onion, and it isn't April Fools. Forbes Magazine reports a test market of "kitten delivery" (today only, according to TFA).

If you just want to cuddle, you can order a kitten escorted by a participating Uber driver for up to 15 minutes.

If nothing else, will this service allow Uber to expand in markets which ban human taxi competition? Or will concern over kitten trafficking spoil the venture?

Submission + - The Rise of Political Doxing (schneier.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Security guru Bruce Schneier predicts a new trend in hacking: political doxing. He points to the recent hack of CIA director Jack Brennan's personal email account and notes that it marks a shift in the purpose of email hacking: "Here, the attacker had a more political motive. He wasn't out to intimidate Brennan; he simply wanted to embarrass him. His personal papers were dumped indiscriminately, fodder for an eager press." Schneier continues, "As people realize what an effective attack this can be, and how an individual can use the tactic to do considerable damage to powerful people and institutions, we're going to see a lot more of it. ... In the end, doxing is a tactic that the powerless can effectively use against the powerful."

Submission + - How a group of neighbors created their own Internet service (arstechnica.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Faced with a local ISP that couldn’t provide modern broadband, Orcas Island residents designed their own network and built it themselves. The nonprofit Doe Bay Internet Users Association (DBIUA), founded by Sutton, Brems, and a few friends, now provide Internet service to a portion of the island. It’s a wireless network with radios installed on trees and houses in the Doe Bay portion of Orcas Island. Those radios get signals from radios on top of a water tower, which in turn receive a signal from a microwave tower across the water in Mount Vernon, Washington.

Submission + - Adobe using Digital Editions v4 to spy on readers 1

An anonymous reader writes: Adobe has taken their Digital Editions ePUB software to new lows, using it to spy on reading habits, transmitting data on ePUBs back to Adobe in plain text, regardless of whether you've actually opened them in ADE. Aside from the huge breach of trust, their lack of encryption leaves all the data open to interception. Apparently this pesky thing called privacy is only a suggestion.

Submission + - EU Libraries Can Digitize Books Without Publisher Consent (itworld.com)

jfruh writes: An advisor to the EU's top court says that European libraries can create digital copies of books without having to acquire an agreement with the books' publishers — but there are a number of restrictions to this right. The digital copies can only be used on terminals in the libraries themselves, and must be actually created by the libraries, not merely downloaded from an already available eBook.

Comment Re:13 deaths? (Score 1) 518

How about you just require the cameras in the vehicles with the worst problems: SUVs, minivans and pickups? The blindzone for a regular car is very small, and reliance on a video screen for those cars probably won't help much; SUVs have the highest number of rollover accidents, followed by pickups, vans and finally passenger cars (in last place). The current law seems like a very expensive undertaking for the most part.

Comment Re:But that's not the real problem. (Score 1) 1651

they assume they are free to ride on sidewalks, run red lights and stop signs, etc. etc. mostly because there is zero enforcement of these laws, too.

Are you talking about the car drivers too? I see everything except driving on sidewalks on a regular basis. I can't count the number of times - as a pedestrian - I've almost been hit by a car going through a red light, turning right on red and trying to drive through the people crossing the road with their signal, or running a stop sign, all of which seems to happen with zero enforcement of the law. And then when the city wants to put in red light cameras to stop people doing that, people scream about their constitutional rights. (*My* constitutional right to not get hit by the aforementioned idiots seems to go unnoticed.)

IT

Submission + - The 12 Most Dreaded Help Desk Requests (infoworld.com)

snydeq writes: "'Working on an IT help desk can feel like an endless case of déjà vu. Let's face it: Computer users are damn predictable. If you've heard a problem once, you've heard it a thousand times before. Some things, though, have been said so many times that they've practically become help desk clichés — and the very sound of them is enough to make any IT pro want to smack his or her head with the nearest blunt object.'"

Submission + - Indian Superbug gene found in American cat (wired.com)

dywolf writes: The NDM-1 story has been long and contentious (my archive of posts is here), but from the first, two things have been clear. However the political battles fall out, medicine views the emergence of this gene as a catastrophe, because it edges organisms to the brink of being completely non-responsive to antibiotics, as untreatable as if the infections were contracted before the antibiotic era began. And because the gene resides in organisms that happily live in the gut without causing symptoms, NDM-1 has been a hidden catastrophe, crossing borders and entering hospitals without ever being detected.
Google

Submission + - Google Mapmaker "forgets" data (google.com)

spectrokid writes: I have been playing with Google Mapmaker for a while now. Now I see that additions I have made were approved, published,... only to disappear again 2-3 weeks later. When route-planning my cycle trip to work, Google insists I should take an expressway which would not only be illegal but also pretty suicidal. I both edited the expressway and used the feedback form, but a month later nothing has changed. (Luckily Open Street Map gets it right.) What are your experiences with Googles latest addition of crowd-sourcing?

Comment Re:Will this result in lower prices? (Score 1) 242

I hear you about Baen - they're one of the few places I've gotten non-free ebooks. I've "bought" more than 800 Amazon ebooks, most of which were free (promotional) or exceptionally cheap (I think I bought a couple for $1.29). I think that's a pretty good deal. Couple that with library e-lending and I really have no need to buy anything (unless I want to own it badly enough and want it *right now*).

Businesses

Submission + - Lack of Developers Still a Big Problem for IT (drdobbs.com)

CowboyRobot writes: "A new InformationWeek survey (slideshow, lots of pretty graphs) shows that most IT managers are having trouble finding developers with the skills they need. It seems obvious that an unsatisfied need would eventually translate into larger salaries for the developers on staff, but that is hindered by the fact that most (94%) managers plan to address the talent shortage by contracting out work and/or hiring new cheaper developers instead of raising salaries to attract more skill. The survey contains some other enlightening opinions, including the prediction that things will get worse before they get better, and that certifications don't matter."

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