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Networking

Home Router For High-Speed Connection? 376

soulprivate writes "My cable company has recently begun to offer Internet access plans with speeds over 30 Mbps (60, 80 and 100 Mbps). However my D-link router is unable to go beyond 30 Mbps if I use NAT; it reaches 60-70 Mbps only if NAT is disabled. Is there any recommendation for a brand/model of residential router that is able to get more than 70 Mbps with NAT enabled? I have been looking for benchmarks or comparisons, to no avail. Does anyone know one? What are your experiences at home?"
Robotics

Pleo Robot Dinosaur Back From Extinction 42

robotsrule sends in a follow-up to our earlier discussion of the bankruptcy of Ugobe, maker of the Pleo robotic dinosaur: "Jetta Company Limited, based in China and Hong Kong, the company that manufactured the Pleo baby robot dinosaur for Ugobe, has bought the intellectual property rights and other assets at the Ugobe bankruptcy sale that occurred on May 21. Jetta is an established company with a 32-year history in manufacturing. They have issued a short press release announcing Pleo's rebirth. Steve Ohler, the US liaison for Jetta, confirmed the news, saying that the company is firmly committed to re-launching Pleo and continuing the line including producing accessories such as the vital battery and charger components. Jetta, as the original manufacturer, is the best possible company to have acquired Ugobe's intellectual property and to announce plans to re-launch Pleo. Ohler remarked that all of the equipment needed to produce Pleos and accessories is still intact and ready to go."
Sci-Fi

Why Our "Amazing" Science Fiction Future Fizzled 499

An anonymous reader sends in a story at CNN about how our predictions for the future tend to be somewhat accurate (whether or not we can do a thing) yet often too optimistic (whether or not it's practical). Obvious example: jetpacks. Quoting: "Joseph Corn, co-author of 'Yesterday's Tomorrows: Past Visions of the American Future,' found an inflated optimism about technology's impact on the future as far back as the 19th century, when writers like Jules Verne were creating wondrous versions of the future. Even then, people had a misplaced faith in the power of inventions to make life easier, Corn says. For example, the typical 19th-century American city was crowded and smelly. The problem was horses. They created traffic jams, filled the streets with their droppings and, when they died, their carcasses. But around the turn of the 20th century, Americans were predicting that another miraculous invention would deliver them from the burden of the horse and hurried urban life — the automobile, Corn says. 'There were a lot of predictions associated with early automobiles,' Corn says. 'They would help eliminate congestion in the city and the messy, unsanitary streets of the city.' Corn says Americans' faith in the power of technology to reshape the future is due in part to their history. Americans have never accepted a radical political transformation that would change their future. They prefer technology, not radical politics, to propel social change."
Censorship

Johnson & Johnson Loses Major Trademark Lawsuit 176

Dekortage writes "As previously discussed here, the health-products giant Johnson & Johnson sued the American Red Cross over use of the ubiquitous 'red cross' logo. J&J has now lost. The presiding judge said Johnson & Johnson's claim against the organization was doubtful because the manufacturer entered into a brand-sharing promotional agreement with the American Red Cross in 1986 — not to mention that the two organizations agreed to share the logo way back in 1895. Sounds like J&J may need to crack open some Tylenol and Band-Aids."
Privacy

Senate Committee Votes To Fingerprint Lenders 146

tjstork recommends a blog post up at Openmarket.org on the passage by a Senate committee of a fingerprinting provision in a foreclosure assistance bill. The provision would require thousands of people connected with the mortgage industry, even tangentially — possibly including part-time and seasonal real estate agents — to send fingerprints to the feds for storage in a database. No explanation is in evidence as to how this would help the problem of loan fraud. The measure passed the Senate Banking Committee by a bipartisan majority of 19 to 2. "The measure the committee passed states that 'an individual may not engage in the business of a loan originator without first... obtaining a unique identifier.' To obtain this 'identifier,' an individual is required to 'furnish to the newly created Nationwide Mortgage Licensing System and Registry 'information concerning the applicant's identity, including fingerprints for submission' to the FBI and other government agencies."
PC Games (Games)

Game Developers Should Ignore Software Pirates 458

wraith808 points out a story about remarks made by the CEO of software and game development company Stardock about sales in the PC game industry. His suggestion to other developers is simple: ignore the software pirates. From Ars Technica: "'So here is the deal: When you develop for a market, you don't go by the user base. You go by the potential customer base. That's what most software companies do. They base what they want to create on the size of the market they're developing for,' Wardell writes on his blog. 'But not PC game developers.' Don't let people who aren't your audience control the titles you make, and ignore piracy. This is much like Trent Reznor's strategy, although the execution is different. Instead of worrying about pirates, just leave the content out in the open. The market Reznor plays to will still buy the music; he's simply stopped worrying about the pirates. He came to the same conclusion: they weren't customers, they might never be customers, so spending money to try to stop them serves no purpose."
The Courts

FBI Posts Fake Hyperlinks To Trap Downloaders of Illegal Porn 767

mytrip brings us a story from news.com about an FBI operation in which agents posted hyperlinks which advertised child pornography, recorded the IP addresses of people who clicked the links, and then tracked them down and raided their homes. The article contains a fairly detailed description of how the operation progressed, and it raises questions about the legality and reliability of getting people to click "unlawful" hyperlinks. Quoting: "With the logs revealing those allegedly incriminating IP addresses in hand, the FBI sent administrative subpoenas to the relevant Internet service provider to learn the identity of the person whose name was on the account--and then obtained search warrants for dawn raids. The search warrants authorized FBI agents to seize and remove any "computer-related" equipment, utility bills, telephone bills, any "addressed correspondence" sent through the U.S. mail, video gear, camera equipment, checkbooks, bank statements, and credit card statements. While it might seem that merely clicking on a link wouldn't be enough to justify a search warrant, courts have ruled otherwise. On March 6, U.S. District Judge Roger Hunt in Nevada agreed with a magistrate judge that the hyperlink-sting operation constituted sufficient probable cause to justify giving the FBI its search warrant."
Earth

Questions Arising On Mercury In Compact Fluorescents 560

Patchw0rk F0g sends in an article from MSNBC on how some environmentalists are having second thoughts on compact fluorescent bulbs. Their relative energy efficiency is unquestioned. The problem is the mercury — enough in one bulb to contaminate 1,000 gallons of water, even in newer low-mercury bulbs. The EPA has an 11-step cleanup process to follow when you break a CFL in your home. The specialized recycling facilities that are needed are thin on the ground — about one per county in California, one of seven states where it is illegal to dispose of CFLs in the general waste stream.

"Sometimes insanity is the only alternative" -- button at a Science Fiction convention.

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