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We've improved Slashdot's video section; now you can view our video interviews, product close-ups and site visits with all the usual Slashdot options to comment, share, etc. No more walled garden! It's a work in progress -- we hope you'll check it out (Learn more about the recent updates).

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+ - Yippie! The old guy at work finally retired-- we can now get rid of Gopher

Submitted by sandbagger
sandbagger (654585) writes "The nice but stubborn old gent who has been here for so long has finally retired. This means we can finally get Gopher off our network! I can't be the only one who has had to put up with such folly. With his luck, he'll end up with a million dollar a year consulting gig at NASA talking to old space probes. Sigh."

+ - Text Messaging Reduces Analgesic Requirements During Surgery.->

Submitted by sandbagger
sandbagger (654585) writes "So, that's what our daughters are doing. Ninety-eight patients receiving regional anesthesia for minor surgeries were randomly assigned to text message with a companion, text message with a stranger, play a distracting mobile phone game, or receive standard perioperative management. Text messaging during surgery provided analgesic-sparing benefits that surpassed distraction techniques."
Link to Original Source

+ - Patent reform may catch the wind again ->

Submitted by sandbagger
sandbagger (654585) writes "The Washington Post reports that an obscure court case could inject new momentum into a bill that tackles patent trolls. The case, Versata v. SAP, challenges how broadly the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office can interpret a congressional mandate to invalidate "bad" patents, the ones that patent trolls so often use to extort companies for easy settlement money.

This might set up a big showdown with industry and patent trolls."

Link to Original Source

+ - ALCU: NSA can't stop US citizen data if it wanted to->

Submitted by sandbagger
sandbagger (654585) writes "The American Civil Liberties Association's Freedom of Information requests have revealed this tidbit in the NSA's reasoning: "As a practical matterit is not possible to determine what communications are to or from U.S, persons nearly as readily as is the case with telephony, and often is not possible at all."

In other words, since the poor guys just have to collect everything. Not their fault."

Link to Original Source

+ - Snowden: US intelligence has employees undercover at networking manufacturers->

Submitted by sandbagger
sandbagger (654585) writes "The National Security Agency has had agents in China, Germany, and South Korea working on programs that use “physical subversion” to infiltrate and compromise networks and devices, according to documents obtained by The Intercept. Thus, it appears that the fundamental core infrastructure of the internet has been more thoroughly compromised than suspected previously."
Link to Original Source

+ - Calling Mr Orwell, rejigged executive order makes collecting data not collecting->

Submitted by sandbagger
sandbagger (654585) writes "'...it is often the case that one can be led astray by relying on the generic or commonly understood definition of a particular word.' Specifically words offering constitutional protections against unreasonable search and seizure. TechDirt looks at the redefinition of the term collection as redefined by Executive Order 12333 to allow basically every information dragnet, provided no-one looks at it. "Collection" is now defined as "collection plus action." According to this document, ot still isn't collected, even if its been gathered, packaged and sent to a "supervisory authority." No collection happens until examination. It's Schroedinger's data, neither collected nor uncollected until the "box" has been opened. This leads to the question of aging off collected data/communications: if certain (non) collections haven't been examined at the end of the 5-year storage limit, are they allowed to be retained simply because they haven't officially been collected yet? Does the timer start when the "box" is opened or when the "box" is filled?"
Link to Original Source

+ - European Union: We don't want public input on TAFTA/TTIP or CETA->

Submitted by sandbagger
sandbagger (654585) writes "One of the most glaring problems with TAFTA/TTIP is the lack of input from the public in whose name it is being negotiated says TechDirt. One million signatures must be gathered within one year to force the EU to respond to a public petition. Additionally, in seven EU states a specific minimum of supporters must be achieved, e.g. 72,000 signatures in Germany, 55,500 in France, or 54,750 in the United Kingdom et cetera.

This comes from a new site set up by the Stop TTIP Alliance, a pan-EU coalition that aims to seek support for the following petition: We invite the European Commission to recommend to the Council to repeal the negotiating mandate for the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) and not to conclude the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA)."

Link to Original Source

Comment: None, because the primary problem solved is ... (Score 1) 471

by sandbagger (#47872597) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What Smartwatch Apps Could You See Yourself Using?

For Apple and not for the consumer.

Basically the iPhone is like DSLRs these days. Once you have one there's really no reason to upgrade generationally because they're THAT good. So what can Apple do? Well, sell you something for your iPhone.

So, it solves a problem for Apple. What critical-path problem does it solve for consumers? Well, you don't have to fish your phone from your pocket to see who's calling. That's a bit of an issue for those of us who live where we have winter but it's not a really, really do-or-die feature. So, really it's following the delude-yourself-into-thinking-this-will-make-you-lose-weight item like 99 per cent of the sports equipment out there.

Look, you'll either go running or you won't. You'll either play sports or you won't. It's a bit like saying you'd take up drawing if you had the right pencil.

I've not doubt that Apple will sell a lot of them but really it's a solution in search of a problem for consumers.

Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from a rigged demo.

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