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Comment Not too bad. (Score 1) 501

Personally, I look at this as pretty brave, but the measures in place will likely deter the average student from mucking around with them, and those who have the skills to circumvent them easily are probably less likely to mess them up anyway. Lenovo has a good rep for a solid build quality too -- a much better choice for year 9 - 12 than some "rugged" but stripped down kids toy. Probably the most bold thing here is CS4 on a atom with 2GB ram.

ASCAP Says Apple Should Pay For 30-sec. Song Samples 463

CNet reports on a new money battle brewing between those who generate music and those who profit from selling it on the Net. "Songwriters, composers, and music publishers are making preparations to one day collect performance fees from Apple and other e-tailers for not just traditional music downloads but for downloads of films and TV shows as well. Those downloads contain music after all. These groups even want compensation for iTunes' 30-second song samples. ... Apparently, the music industry can't obtain the fees through negotiations. They have begun lobbying Congress to pass legislation that would require anyone who sells a download to pay a performance fee..."

Gene Therapy Cures Color-Blind Monkeys 197

SpuriousLogic writes "After receiving injections of genes that produce color-detecting proteins, two color-blind monkeys have seen red and green for the first time. Except in its extreme forms, color blindness isn't a debilitating condition, but it's a convenient stand-in for other types of blindness that might be treated with gene therapy. The monkey success raises the possibility of reversing those diseases, in a manner that most scientists considered impossible. 'We said it was possible to give an adult monkey with a model of human red-green color blindness the retina of a person with normal color vision. Every single person I talked to said, absolutely not,' said study co-author Jay Neitz, a University of Washington ophthalmologist. 'And almost every unsolved vision defect out there has this component in one way or another, where the ability to translate light into a gene signal is involved.' The full-spectrum supplementation of the squirrel monkeys' sight, described Wednesday in Nature, comes just less than a year after researchers used gene therapy to restore light perception in people afflicted by Leber Congenital Amaurosis, a rare and untreatable form of blindness."

Rome, Built In a Day 107

spmallick writes "Researchers at the University of Washington, in collaboration with Microsoft, have recreated the city of Rome in 3D using images obtained from Flickr. The data set consists of 150,000 images from associated with the tags 'Rome' or 'Roma,' and it took 21 hours on 496 compute cores to create a 3D digital model. Unlike Photosynth / Photo Tourism, the goal was to reconstruct an entire city and not just individual landmarks. Previous versions of the Photo Tourism software matched each photo to every other photo in the set. But as the number of photos increases the number of matches explodes, increasing with the square of the number of photos. A set of 250,000 images would take at least a year for 500 computers to process... A million photos would take more than a decade! The newly developed code works more than a hundred times faster than the previous version. It first establishes likely matches and then concentrates on those parts."
Social Networks

Facebook Ordered To Turn Over Source Code 304

consonant writes "A Delaware District Court judge has ordered Facebook to turn over ALL its source code to Leader Technologies, who allege patent infringements by Facebook. The patent in question appears to be for 'associating a piece of data with multiple categories.' Additionally, while the judge in question deems it fine to let Leader Technologies look at Facebook's source (for a patent, no less!) in its entirety for a single feature, it would be 'overboard to ask a patent holder to disclose all of their products that practice any claim of the patent-in-suit.'"
The Internet

Family's Christmas Photos Hawk Groceries In Prague 263

Hugh Pickens writes "The Telegraph reports that Jeff and Danielle Smith sent a photo of themselves with their two young children to family and friends as a Christmas card, and posted the image on her blog and a few social networking websites. Then, last month, a friend of the family was vacationing in the Czech Republic when he spotted a full size poster of the Missouri family's smiling faces in the window of a local supermarket in Prague, advertising a grocery delivery service. The friend snapped a few pictures and sent them to the Smiths, who were flabbergasted. Mario Bertuccio, who owns the Grazie store in Prague, admitted that he had found the photo online but thought it was computer-generated and promised to remove it, and 'We'll be happy to write an e-mail with our apology,' he says. Meanwhile Mrs. Smith has received 180,000 visitors and over 500 comments on her blog since she posted the story. She says she is glad the photo wasn't used in an unseemly manner. 'Interesting. Bizarre. Flattering, I suppose,' writes Mrs. Smith. 'But quite creepy.'"

Does Bing Have Google Running Scared? 560

suraj.sun alerts us to an anonymous-source story up at the NY Post, not what we would normally consider a leading source of tech news, claiming that Microsoft's introduction of Bing has alarmed Google. " Sergey Brin is so rattled by the launch of Microsoft's rival search engine that he has assembled a team of top engineers to work on urgent upgrades to his Web service, The Post has learned. Brin, according to sources..., is himself leading the team of search-engine specialists in an effort to determine how Bing's crucial search algorithm differs from that used by [Google]. 'New search engines have come and gone in the past 10 years, but Bing seems to be of particular interest to Sergey,' said one insider, who spoke on the condition of anonymity. The move by Brin is unusual, as it is rare these days for the Google founders to have such hands-on involvement in day-to-day operations at the company, the source added." CNet's coverage of the rumor begins with the NY Post and adds in Search Engine Land's speculation on what the world of search would look like if Yahoo exited the field.
It's funny.  Laugh.

Dilbert Goes Flash, Readers Revolt 486

spagiola writes "The website just got an extreme makeover. Gone is the old, rather clunky but perfectly functional, website, replaced by a Flash-heavy website that only Mordac the Preventer of Information Services could love. Users have been pretty unanimous in condemning the changes. Among the politer comments: 'Congrats. Vista is no more lonely at the top in the Competition For The Worst Upgrade In Computing Industry, this web site upgrade being a serious contender.' You have to register to leave comments, but many seem to have registered for the express purpose of panning the new design."

Two is not equal to three, even for large values of two.