Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Idle

A Few Million Virtual Monkeys Randomly Recreate Shakespeare 312 Screenshot-sm 312

First time accepted submitter eljefe6a writes "On September 23 at 2:30 PST the A Million Amazonian Monkeys project successfully recreated A Lover's Complaint. This is the first time a work of Shakespeare has actually been randomly reproduced. It is one small step for a monkey, one giant leap for virtual primates everywhere. From the article: 'For this project, I used Hadoop, Amazon EC2, and Ubuntu Linux. Since I don’t have real monkeys, I have to create fake Amazonian Map Monkeys. The Map Monkeys create random data in ASCII between a and z. It uses Sean Luke’s Mersenne Twister to make sure I have fast, random, well behaved monkeys. Once the monkey’s output is mapped, it is passed to the reducer which runs the characters through a Bloom Field membership test. If the monkey output passes the membership test, the Shakespearean works are checked using a string comparison. If that passes, a genius monkey has written 9 characters of Shakespeare. The source material is all of Shakespeare’s works as taken from Project Gutenberg.'"
The Internet

Submission + - Low Income Families Can Now Get Comcast Internet-> 1 1

tekgoblin writes: "Looks like Comcast now wants to help get low income families on its network by offering a very cheap internet plan. Comcast now offers for those that qualify a $10 a month plan to families that have very low income and cannot afford higher level plans."
Link to Original Source
Power

Limits On Growth of Energy Use and Economies 482 482

snoop.daub writes "Dr. Tom Murphy, professor of astrophysics at UCSD, has a new blog called 'Do The Math,' and the first few posts are doozies. In the first, he shows the impossibility of continued exponential growth in energy use. Even if a new, 'free' energy source is developed, thermodynamic limits on efficiency mean that the heat associated with converting this energy into useful work will increase the temperature of the earth to unbearable levels within 300 years. In the second, he extends the argument to economic growth. The timescales there are faster, only 50-100 years. Fascinating stuff. Time to stop breeding, folks, or to get our butts into space."

Submission + - The Pentagon Papers Have Been Released->

An anonymous reader writes: The complete, unredacted Pentagon Papers is available in pdf format at the National Archives. Several gigabytes of data. Too bad their website is completely incapable of hosting such important data. "Papered" will replace "Slashdotted" to describe bringing a webserver to its knees by posting suddenly popular content.
Link to Original Source
Canada

Submission + - Canada Opts-in to US No-Fly List->

ablair writes: The Canadian House of Commons passed a controversial government bill Wednesday that forces airlines to hand over passenger information to the U.S. government for all domestic & international flights that pass through U.S. airspace. The legislation gives U.S. authorities final say on who can and cannot board Canadian flights. Though the bill was called "a complete abdication to a foreign government of Canada's duty to protect the privacy of Canadians, and a cessation of existing Canadian legal safeguards." by the Canadian Civil Liberties Association, the final vote wasn't even close: 246 to 34, with only one party opposed.
Link to Original Source

Comment Re:speaking as a Canadian to the USTR (Score 1) 277 277

Because the people who back he IIPA are the same people behind the networks who stream everything for free to people within the US (via HULU etc), but decided it's not worth their time to try and secure advertisers in other countries, and put them all on a IP ban list. It shouldn't be a big surprise that when there are no legitimate avenues to obtain things, people would resort to piracy. But I doubt they actually care, because it gives them fodder to argue for tighter restrictions..
Television

Submission + - New TV Show May Violate Child Pornography Laws 3 3

Hugh Pickens writes: "The Contra Costa Times reports that executives at MTV are concerned that some scenes from the provocative new show "Skins" may violate child pornography statutes defined by the federal government as any visual depiction of someone under 18 engaged in sexually explicit conduct. "Skins" is an import from Britain, a country that has historically displayed a higher tolerance for TV eroticism and episodes there included simulated masturbation, implied sexual assault, and teenagers disrobing and getting into bed together. The early episodes for MTV, including the third one, are virtually identical to the source material. The Parents Television Council, a TV watchdog group, has labeled "Skins" the "most dangerous program that has ever been foisted on your children" and has asked Congress and the Justice Department to investigate because unlike "Glee" and other TV shows depicting sexually active teenagers, the actors in "Skins" are still teenagers, rather than actors in their 20s. However MTV says the show addresses real-world issues confronting teens in a frank way. "We also have taken numerous steps to alert viewers to the strong subject matter so that they can choose for themselves whether it is appropriate.""

Comment Who didn't see this coming? (Score 1) 2166 2166

Gun control is clearly to blame -- If she had been packing heat, she could have defended herself! But seriously folks... If any good comes of this, it will be in the form of a people's movement that calls for greater responsibility in political speech, to disagree rather than demonize each other. Here's hoping Jon Stewart picks this up and runs with it.

Comment Re:not just japan (Score 1) 315 315

Hi there. It's great to see that you've bought into the video game industry's marketing juggernaut (thereby identifying yourself as a gamer, keen to spend more money on said games), but some of those companies have contributed some quality titles; possibly not of your generation or preferred genre, but true none-the-less.

[Crash programs] fail because they are based on the theory that, with nine women pregnant, you can get a baby a month. -- Wernher von Braun

Working...