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Communications

+ - With VT & TurboTax, how do you stress test ser

Submitted by
An anonymous reader writes "Given the massive traffic driven unexpectedly to VT's webservers and the load that crippled TurboTax, and even the load slashdot can bring on a server, how does one best stress test their servers? Specifically web servers and IIS. Are there 3rd party companies that can provide a better simulated load or are there hosted solutions for 'standby' servers?

http://support.turbotax.intuit.com/cgi-bin/turbota x.cfg/php/enduser/std_adp.php?p_faqid=3598&lid=703 0

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/231282"
Security

+ - Big Virus Outbreak Today - 60 Times Normal Levels

Submitted by
An anonymous reader writes " Postini which processes more than 2 billion messages a day, is tracking a massive virus outbreak today that is set to be the largest attack on email in more than a year. Initial reports from Postini's global data centers indicate that today's attacks have driven virus levels 60 times higher than average daily levels on the Internet. Today's attack includes two variants. Emails with "love" related subject lines and an executable attachment that contains a Trojan virus, and emails with Worm Alert! in the headline containing an attached .zip file with an infected payload. Earlier in the week a similar attack took place with the subject lines focused on "missile attacks" starting World War III. These attacks are all variations of the same malware family as the "Storm Worm" attacks that plagued Email users around the world earlier in the year. When a user clicks on the attached executable, a rootkit is installed that attempts to hide its presence from virus scans as well as disable existing anti-virus applications. Then it will connect to a peer-to-peer network where it can upload data including personal information from the infected computer as well as download additional malware. The infected computer then becomes a bot-net zombie that can be used to send spam and issue other attacks. At the same time that it is connecting to the P2P network, the virus will search the computer's hard drive for email addresses and begin replicating itself by sending emails to the addresses that it finds. These attacks make this the most active week for Internet email attacks in more than a year."
Puzzle Games (Games)

+ - Orangutans monkey around with video games

Submitted by Populus Quo
Populus Quo (666) writes "Two Sumatran orangutans at Zoo Atlanta are playing computer games while researchers study the cognitive skills of the orange and brown primates.
From the article:


Four-year-old Bernas isn't the computer wizard his mom is, but he's learning. Just the other day he used his lips and feet to play a game on the touch-screen monitor as his mom, Madu, swung from vines and climbed trees.
[...] In one game, orangutans choose identical photographs or match orangutan sounds with photos of the animals — correct answers are rewarded with food pellets. Another game lets them draw pictures by moving their hands and other body parts around the screen. Printouts of their masterpieces are on display in the zoo.
The computer games, which volunteers from IBM spent nearly 500 hours developing, test the animals' memory, reasoning and learning, spitting out sheets of data for researchers at the zoo and Atlanta's Center for Behavioral Neuroscience, a partner in the project.
"
Nintendo

+ - Kansas refutes Evolution... in Pokemon

Submitted by
RyoShin
RyoShin writes "Even after the conservative members lost control of the old Kansas school board, evolution still remains a large issue for the Board of Education in Kansas. Well, in video games. Specifically, one video game: Pokemon. On Monday, the Kansas Board of Education approved a measure to ban most content related to Pokemon, including the games themselves and trading cards "because of the franchise's blatant promotion of evolution". Furthermore, they instructed teachers to "search their students at the beginning of the school day to make sure that they aren't carrying any copies of the game". The article is sparse on further details, but states that the ACLU will challenge the decision."
PlayStation (Games)

+ - PlayStation 3 sales down by 82%

Submitted by xtracto
xtracto (837672) writes "Several news outlets are reporting on the incredible 80 per cent drop on the sales of the new Sony console in the second week of availability, according to industry watchers ChartTrack. From GamesIndustry:

Chart Track data is gathered from 7000 UK retail outlets representing 90 per cent of the software market, including GAME, Gamestation, Play.com, Asda and HMV. A spokesperson for Chart Track confirmed the figure to GamesIndustry.biz this afternoon, stating: "Yes, sales of PS3 hardware have dropped by 82 per cent."
"
It's funny.  Laugh.

+ - Top 21 Tech Flops

Submitted by
PetManimal
PetManimal writes "Whatever happened to Digital Audio Tape? Or Circuit City's DIVX program? Or IBM's PCjr. and the PS/1? Computerworld's list of 21 biggest tech flops is an amusing trip down the memory lane of tech failures. Some are obvious (Apple Newton), while others are obscure (Warner Communications' QUBE). Strangely, Y2K didn't make the list."
Education

+ - Episodic Memory, Indicator of Human Intelligence?

Submitted by
eldavojohn
eldavojohn writes "I caught an interesting article over at IEEE's Spectrum where they discussed something relevant to yesterday's story on Chimps having human rights. I found this article to do a better job of arguing the case for or against human versus animal consciousness as yesterday's story seemed to rely on human emotions for certain near human child-like behavior. Instead, they focus on two different approaches to the psycho-physiological idea of "episodic memory" whereby one researcher attempts to replicate it using Bayesian models and a "hierarchical temporal memory" and while another team focuses on it from the psychological and philosophical side. From the Spectrum article, "The connection between the two sets of research is that both are coming at, from completely different directions, the idea of intelligent behavior. In each case as well, results from neurobiology — such as those brain scans of episodic memory — have been a starting point for, in the one case, animal psychology, and in the other, computer science and robotics.""
The Internet

+ - What's the Real Cost of BitTorrent vs Legit?

Submitted by
SharkeeTX
SharkeeTX writes "How much do you really save using BitTorrent for TV? How much does leaving your computer on to download cost? This study reveals the costs and savings of BitTorrent, iTunes TV, XBox Marketplace TV, and Digital Cable. When is one cheaper than another? How much TV do you watch determines the answer and guides you to a cheapest solution.

http://thehonk.net/?p=179"
Hardware Hacking

+ - Simple computation using dominos

Submitted by
An anonymous reader writes "When silicon fails to beat Moores law, maybe dominos can help. This guy has created a half adder in dominos as a proof of concept for domino computation. If he intends to make a full domino computer he's going to need an awful lot of dominos..."

Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from a rigged demo.

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