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+ - The Government Can No Longer Track Your Cell Phone Without a Warrant 1

Submitted by Jason Koebler
Jason Koebler (3528235) writes "The government cannot use cell phone location data as evidence in a criminal proceeding without first obtaining a warrant, an appeals court ruled today, in one of the most important privacy decisions in recent memory.
"In short, we hold that cell site location information is within the subscriber’s reasonable expectation of privacy," the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit ruled. "The obtaining of that data without a warrant is a Fourth Amendment violation.""

Comment: Re:This actally makes it an intersting product. (Score 1) 173

by PetiePooo (#47211367) Attached to: Alienware Swaps SteamOS For Windows
OP:

... when configured to boot straight into Steam Big Picture mode, the influence of the underlying OS is visible only in the larger game library.

... and the considerable additional maintenance requirements that go along with a full fledged operating system. Considering that Windows has required more frequent patches for security issues than Linux for the past few years, that's not a trivial distinction.

PP:

With Windows on it, this little machine can fulfill most of my needs for the living room / home and offers me a platform that i am already familiar with to play my games, (Steam supported or not), get some work done (Office etc) and watch movies.

While this is a valid point, it is a realization of this change in paradigm. With Windows 8.1, it is a regular desktop computer, not a gaming console. While that gives you the ability to do office work and more, it takes it out of the single-purpose, dedicated function, "appliance" category that consoles usually fall in.

With Linux running as essentially an embedded OS, it's likely that updates would be less frequent, smaller, and less crucial to it's overall suitability if skipped. As an example, how long has it been since you've updated your smart TV or DVR as opposed to your desktop or laptop?

+ - Computer Chronicles Now Streaming 24x7 on Justin.tv

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Some of us might remember the television series Computer Chronicles, created by Stewart Cheifet. It aired on Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) during the mid 80's to early 2000's and documented the rise of the personal computer from its infancy to the immense market at the turn of the 21st century. Last week, the unofficial YouTube channel ComputerChroniclesYT announced they were streaming past episodes 24x7 live on Justin.tv."

Comment: Late-breaking news: PATHWAYS TO VICTORY! (Score 4, Funny) 206

It doesn't work to do this with a democratic government. We need a monarchy :-(

Or perhaps a font of sage wisdom? You know, like a Council? Composed of wise people, you know, like one's Elders? Something any sentient species ought to be able to figure out. Speaking of which, I feel another press release coming on...

K'Breel, Speaker for the Council, addresses the publication of the new report thusly:

"WE HAVE TRIUMPHED! Our skilled operatives from the Division of Behavioral and Social Sciences and Propaganda; Planetary Research Council have successfully infiltrated the blueworlders' technological and informational systems. One notable document, Pathways to Exploration makes clear the disarray in which the blueworlders' long-term invasion plans lie, drawing on the history of meat-controlled spaceflight to justify future programs in organic space exploitation. Although the report promotes the invasion of our world as the horizon goal for the program, it takes into account funding levels necessary to maintain a robust tempo of execution, current research and exploration projects and the time/resources needed to continue them, and intertribal cooperation that would be required to further oppress the citizens of our fair red world."

"And its conclusion? Although the mechanized threat remains, and we salute those still fighting pitched battles with the two active land-based invaders, Pathways to Exploration makes it clear that it is not possible for the blueworlders' organic-based self-replicators to invade our world, at least not without a sustained commitment to funding at a higher level than their own tribal leaders are currently providing."

When an intern from the defense engineering board suggested that improving the capabilities of the blueworlders' EDL systems, radshielding, and propulsion and power systems were ultimately matters of engineering and not physics, and could ultimately be addressed if the tribals of the blue world ever get it into their oxygen-addled brains to work together to achieve a common goal (as, the intern suggested, the way any sentient species does), K'Breel had the intern's gelsacs addled by immersing them in a suitably-merciful quantity of liquid oxygen.

Thus spake K'Breel, Speaker for the Council of Elders, Committee on Native Spaceflight; Arenautics and Defense Engineering Board; Defense Studies Board; Division of Blueworlder Social and Physical Sciences; Committee on Gelsacular Statistics.

+ - Star Within a Star: Thorne-Zytkow Object Discovered->

Submitted by astroengine
astroengine (1577233) writes "A weird type of ‘hybrid’ star has been discovered nearly 40 years since it was first theorized — but until now has been curiously difficult to find. In 1975, renowned astrophysicists Kip Thorne, of the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) in Pasadena, Calif., and Anna Zytkow, of the University of Cambridge, UK, assembled a theory on how a large dying star could swallow its neutron star binary partner, thus becoming a very rare type of stellar hybrid, nicknamed a Thorne-Zytkow object (or TZO). The neutron star — a dense husk of degenerate matter that was once a massive star long since gone supernova — would spiral into the red supergiant’s core, interrupting normal fusion processes. According to the Thorne-Zytkow theory, after the two objects have merged, an excess of the elements rubidium, lithium and molybdenum will be generated by the hybrid. So astronomers have been on the lookout for stars in our galaxy, which is thought to contain only a few dozen of these objects at any one time, with this specific chemical signature in their atmospheres. Now, according to Emily Levesque of the University of Colorado Boulder and her team, a bona fide TZO has been discovered and their findings have been accepted for publication in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society Letters."
Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:Damn I'm old... (Score 4, Funny) 126

I kept thinking "I am the very model of a modern Major Perl Framework..."

I am the very model of a modern Major Perl Framework,
But here I am on Slashdot, trying harder from my job to shirk,
From HackerNews to 4chan there's no forum in which I won't lurk,
I am the very model of a modern Major Perl Framework!

Education

The Linux Foundation and edX Team Up for Intoduction to Linux Class 74

Posted by samzenpus
from the from-the-man-himself dept.
An anonymous reader writes "The Linux Foundation has teamed up with MOOC provider edX to teach an introduction to Linux class. Quoting the course description: 'This course explores the various tools and techniques commonly used by Linux programmers, system administrators and end users to achieve their day-to-day work in a Linux environment. It is designed for experienced computer users who have limited or no previous exposure to Linux, whether they are working in an individual or Enterprise environment.' The course begins on August 1st. In addition to the free version of the course, a verified track is available for students who want a credential with more weight (for a nominal price)." Update: As many have pointed out Linus just did an intro for the class. Headline corrected accordingly.

+ - Wichita Lineman 2.0: Bill Gates Wants Accelerometers on Power Lines

Submitted by theodp
theodp (442580) writes "GeekWire reports that Bill Gates is listed as an inventor on a newly surfaced patent filing that proposes putting accelerometers on power lines to understand how far they move in wind and other conditions, and monitor how close they come to trees and other nearby objects. The idea is to detect issues with power lines before they cause serious problems. Gates and power go way back — a legacy system BillG worked on as a teen that helped manage the electrical grid for the Bonneville Power Administration was just retired after keeping the lights on for 38 years."

Comment: Re:Lol... (Score 5, Insightful) 329

by prisoner-of-enigma (#46981215) Attached to: EA Ending Online Support For Dozens of Games

I oppose the very idea of "professional entertainment", be it musicians, athletes, actors or games programmers.

Let me get this straight: you oppose all forms of compensated entertainment? So you consume no music, no movies, no fictional books, no games of any kind (electronic or otherwise), view no works of art...nothing at all? Or do you consume these things but just presume that people should never be paid for providing them to you?

I'm not about to shill for the copyright-manipulating media conglomerates, but IMO your viewpoint is either hopelessly extreme or ridiculously hypocritical. If people choose to entertain someone else, that effort has intrinsic value. Now exactly what that value might be is debatable and purely subjective based upon the value it has to those consuming said entertainment, but it surely has value to those who consume it, otherwise they wouldn't. You pay for people to fix your food at restaurants, or to build your computer components, or any number of other trades that require someone with a particular skill to perform a particular service. Why should entertainment alone be considered a pro bono profession?

+ - Firefox 29 is a Flop; UI Design Trends Getting Worse 2

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Firefox 29 marked the release of the UI overhaul codenamed "Australis" and the jury is back with a verdict: the vast majority of feedback on Firefox Input is negative and traffic to the Classic Theme Restorer add-on has aggressively spiked since Firefox 29 came out on April 29. Considering this is a year and a half after the backlash against the new Windows 8 user interface, it seems that even though the "dumbing down" trends in UI design are infuriating users, they continue to happen. Chrome will soon be hiding URLs, OS X has hidden scroll bars by default, iOS 7 flattened everything, and Windows 8 made scroll bars hard to see. If most users hate these changes, why are they so ubiquitous?"

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