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Social Networks

Are We Too Quick To Act On Social Media Outrage? 371 371

RedK writes: Connie St-Louis, on June 8th, reported on apparently sexist remarks made by Sir Tim Hunt, a Nobel prize winning scientist, during an event organised for women in sciences. This led to the man's dismissal from his stations, all in such urgency that he did not even have time to present his side, nor was his side ever offered any weight. A leaked report a few days later suggests that the remarks were taken out of context. Further digging shows that the accuser has distorted the truth in many cases it seems. This is not the first time that people may have jumped the gun too soon on petty issues and ruined great events or careers.

+ - AMD Reveals Radeon R9 Fury X Specifications And Preliminary Performance Numbers->

MojoKid writes: AMD announced new Radeon R9 and R7 300 series of graphics cards earlier this week, and while they are interesting, they're not nearly as impressive as AMD's upcoming flagship of AMD GPU, code named Fiji. Fiji will find its way into three products this summer: the Radeon R9 Nano, Radeon R9 Fury, and the range-topping (and water-cooled) Radeon R9 Fury X. Other upcoming variants like AMD's dual-Fiji board were teased at E3 but are still under wraps. While full reviews are still under embargo, the official specification of the Radeon R9 Fury X have been revealed, along with an array of benchmark scores comparing the GPU to NVIDIA's GeForce GTX 980 Ti. Should the numbers AMD has released jibe with independent reviews, the Fury X looks very strong.
Link to Original Source

+ - US hacking: Military and intelligence data 'accessed'-> 1 1

middleclassjobs writes: Details of a major hack emerged last week, but officials have now given details of a potential second breach. Hackers with suspected links to China appear to have accessed sensitive data on US intelligence and military personnel, American officials say. Officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity to the Associated Press (AP) news agency, believe the attackers have targeted the forms submitted by intelligence and military personnel for security clearances.
The document includes personal information — everything from eye color, to financial history, to past substance abuse, as well as contact details for the individual's friends and relatives.

Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:If it sounds too good to be true (Score 4, Informative) 243 243

The problem is that many devices require ridiculously high minimum threshold voltages just to work.

TI, for example, sells a remote control IR encoder that requires a supply voltage of 2.7V. That means two AA batteries in series run down to below 1.35V apiece will not run a device with that IR encoder.

A typical AA battery will deliver only about 0.40 AH before it runs down to 1.35V. That 0.40 AH is of a 2.1 AH total. That's a huge waste.

Comment: Re:What a shocker (Score 4, Informative) 54 54

Who would have thought having trees, shrubs and other natural barriers between an airport and the people would reduce noise levels?

It's as if clear cutting was found not to work.

Who thinks that? People that have never studied noise abatement and think their cleverness is enough to allow them to intuit the science.

Trees and shrubs do very little. A thorough study from the state of Virginia showed

No matter how the sites were examined, there was no measurable difference in road noise. All differences at the more distant measurement locations were due simply to the distance effect rather than to any additional mitigating effects of trees, whether measured by planting density, age, height, or average tree diameter.

Cellphones

Pre-Orders Start For Neo900 Open Source Phone 134 134

New submitter JoSch1337 writes: After a year and a half of development, the Neo900 project now opened its web shop for the down payments of binding pre-orders for either a full Neo900 phone or the bare circuit board to upgrade an existing Nokia N900. The up-front down payment is necessary to now secure expensive "risk parts" like the modem, 1GB RAM and N900 cases. Thus, without pre-ordering now, there might not be enough parts left after the first batch.

The Neo900 is the spritual successor of the Nokia N900. The new circuit board can be placed into an existing N900 for better specs (faster CPU, more RAM, LTE modem) than the original device while still maintaining fremantle (maemo 5) backwards compatibility. Alternatively, a fully assembled phone can be purchased as well. The Neo900 will be fully operational without any binary blob running on the main CPU. While the modem still requires a non-free firmware, it is completely decoupled from the rest of the device (think of a LTE usb stick you put in your laptop) and can reliably be monitored or switched off by the operating system.

You can follow the development of the project in the maemo forum, read about the specs of the device or consult the FAQ

+ - DEA steals life savings of innocent man

schwit1 writes: In another example of civil forfeiture, DEA agents confiscated the life savings of a man heading to California based on no evidence.

There was no evidence of a crime, the man was never charged, but three weeks later he still has not gotten his money back.

Sean Waite, the agent in charge for the DEA in Albuquerque, said he could not comment on the Rivers case because it is ongoing. He disputed allegations that Rivers was targeted because of his race. Waite said that in general DEA agents look for "indicators" such as whether the person bought an expensive one-way ticket with cash, if the person is traveling from or to a city known as a hot spot for drug activity, if the person's story has inconsistencies or if the large sums of money found could have been transported by more conventional means.

"We don't have to prove that the person is guilty," Waite said. "It's that the money is presumed to be guilty."

Read the whole article. This is entirely unconstitutional. The fifth amendment to the Bill of Rights expressly forbids the taking of private property "without just compensation."

Open Source

When Enthusiasm For Free Software Turns Ugly 177 177

An anonymous reader writes: Bruce Byfield writes for Linux Magazine about the unfortunate side-effect of people being passionate about open source software: discussions about rival projects can get heated and turn ugly. "Why, for example, would I possibly to see OpenOffice humiliated? I prefer LibreOffice's releases, and — with some misgivings — the Free Software Foundation's philosophy and licensing over that of the Apache Foundation. I also question the efficiency of having two office suites so closely related to each other. Yet while exploring such issues may be news, I don't forget that, despite these differences, OpenOffice and the Apache Foundation still have the same general goals as LibreOffice or the Free Software Foundation. The same is true of other famous feuds. Why, because I have a personal preference for KDE, am I supposed to ignore GNOME's outstanding interface designs? Similarly, because I value Debian's stability and efforts at democracy, am I supposed to have a strong distaste for Ubuntu?"
Government

Think Tanks: How a Bill [Gates Agenda] Becomes a Law 165 165

theodp writes: The NY Times' Eric Lipton was just awarded a 2015 Pulitzer Prize for investigative reporting that shed light on how foreign powers buy influence at think tanks. So, it probably bears mentioning that Microsoft's 'two-pronged' National Talent Strategy (PDF) to increase K-12 CS education and the number of H-1B visas — which is on the verge of being codified into laws — was hatched at an influential Microsoft and Gates Foundation-backed think tank mentioned in Lipton's reporting, the Brookings Institution. In 2012, the Center for Technology Innovation at Brookings hosted a forum on STEM education and immigration reforms, where fabricating a crisis was discussed as a strategy to succeed with Microsoft's agenda after earlier lobbying attempts by Bill Gates and Microsoft had failed. "So, Brad [Microsoft General Counsel Brad Smith]," asked the Brookings Institution's Darrell West at the event, "you're the only [one] who mentioned this topic of making the problem bigger. So, we galvanize action by really producing a crisis, I take it?" "Yeah," Smith replied (video). And, with the help of nonprofit organizations like Code.org and FWD.us that were founded shortly thereafter, a national K-12 CS and tech immigration crisis was indeed created.

Comment: Re:Too early for criticism. (Score 1) 238 238

I thought he had simply mis-spoken or was mis-quoted given that the commercials have already run for more than a year.

If the quote is accurate, then it must mean the new tax rules began in 2015.

Still, it's one year of hype leading to a launch that virtually no one showed up for.

"Floggings will continue until morale improves." -- anonymous flyer being distributed at Exxon USA

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