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Submission Summary: 0 pending, 104 declined, 24 accepted (128 total, 18.75% accepted)

+ - The world of fan fiction->

Submitted by whoever57
whoever57 (658626) writes "The UK's Daily Telegraph has an interesting and somewhat balanced view of the world of fan fiction, providing an historical perspective, the different types of audiences and how different authors and publishers react to fan fiction. Of particular note, is how the author of Fifty Shades of Grey (originally a fan fiction based on the Twilight series) reacts to parties themed around the novel (not well). The article notes how some publishers and authors welcome fan fiction because it enables the original author to make more money."
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+ - Layoffs coming at Microsoft?->

Submitted by whoever57
whoever57 (658626) writes "Shaun Nichols at The Register interpets Satya Nadella's open letter as "prepare for layoffs". The letter suggests radical changes are coming to Microsoft and, combined with duplication of functions because of the Nokia handset business acquisition, he thinks that layoffs are highly likely. Wes Miller, research vice-president at Directions on Microsoft, says that Microsoft is shifting from the Windows-everywhere approach, towards supporting productivity applications on different platforms. More details will be forthcoming from Microsoft on July 22."
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+ - Yetis: close relatives of ancient polar bears

Submitted by whoever57
whoever57 (658626) writes "A study of "Yeti" hair samples shows some interesting results. Most of the samples were not hair at all, some were human, some were from horses, some from known bear types but two samples showed a surprising match: a 100% match to 40,000 year old DNA from a polar bear. One sample came from the carcass of an animal killed 40 years ago in India and the other from Bhutan. The scientists report that: “It seems more likely that the two hairs reported here are from either a previously unrecognised bear species, or brown bear/polar bear hybrids.”"

+ - UK Government pays Microsoft £5.5M for extended support of Windows XP. ->

Submitted by whoever57
whoever57 (658626) writes "The UK Government has signed a contract worth £5.5M (almost $9M) for extended support and security updates for Windows XP for 12 months after April 8. The deal covers XP, Exchange 2003 and Office 2003 for users in central and local government, schools and the National Health Service. The NHS is in need of this deal because it was estimated last September that 85% of the NHS's 800,000 computers were running XP."
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+ - NSA intercepts shipments of new computers and installs software.-> 2

Submitted by whoever57
whoever57 (658626) writes "According to an orginal report in Der Spiegel, and
secondary reporting in the Washington Post, the NSA intercepts deliveries of PCs and installs logging software or hardware on them before the customer receives them. According to a document cited by Der Spegel, interception is one of the NSA's "most productive operations"

Der Spiegel also reported that the NSA intercepts and uses Windows crash reports in order to gather information that is used to develop new methods to crack Windows machines."

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+ - Microsoft pulls update for Surface 2 after problems.->

Submitted by whoever57
whoever57 (658626) writes "On Decemer 10, Microsoft released a firmware update for Surface Pro 2. Now, due to widespread issues with battery life, charging, sleeping, etc., Microsoft has pulled the update. It appears that some of the tablets failed to completely install the update. The number of people posting about the the problem in the Microsoft Community site shows that there are at least hundreds of users with this problem. What propeortion of the Surface Pro 2 user base does this represent?"
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+ - Why you should not talk to the cops, redux. ->

Submitted by whoever57
whoever57 (658626) writes "The technique most commonly used by police in the USA for interrogations produces a shockingly high rate of false confessions. People who have solid alibis tend to be found guilty purely because of their confession. This technique was developed by John Reid and the defendant who confessed in the case that made Reid's reputation was shown, years later, to be innocent. The technique discussed in an article in the New Yorker magazine (subscription required). The author of the article also discuses it in an interview on NPR's Fresh Air program. The underpinnings of the Reid technique have been shown to be based on pseudo-science. The UK police now use a different technique, which is not focussed on obtaining a confession, but rather eliciting information which may be used to show the guilt or innocence of the interviewee: the PEACE technique, which is closer to the way journalists conduct interviews. Good cop/bad cop doesn't seem to feature in any techniques."
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+ - Nearly 150 years late, the Church of England apologises to Charles Darwin->

Submitted by whoever57
whoever57 (658626) writes "Almost 150 years ago, the Church of England rejected Charles Darwin's theories. Now, 150 years later, the church is comparing that rejection to the rejection of Galileo's work. The CoE will publish an apology, written by the Rev Dr Malcolm Brown, the Church's director of mission and public affairs. The apology will be on a CoE website, going live on Monday, which will promote Charles Darwin's ideas."
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+ - Team Oracle penalized for rules violations->

Submitted by whoever57
whoever57 (658626) writes "On Saturday, Oracle Team USA and Team New Zealand begin racing for the America's Cup in the amazing AC72 boats. However, the Oracle team starts with a siginficant handicap. It was recently discovered that members of Oracle Team USA made illegal changes to the boats used in the Americas Cup Series (which is sailed in the smaller AC45 boats). After a hearing on Friday, the International Jury has decided on the penalty: Team Oracle will have to pay a fine, sail without some team members and more significantly, loses 2 points before starting the Americas Cup races against Team New Zealand. A tiny amount of weight had been added to the kingposts, in violation of the measurement rules for the class. This was reported to the measurement committee some weeks ago after its discovery by boatbuilders working for America's Cup Regatta Management (ACRM), not members of Oracle Team USA."
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+ - The NSA can't search its own emails.->

Submitted by whoever57
whoever57 (658626) writes "The NSA responded to an FOI request asking that the requestor narrow the information required because its email system is "a little antiquated and archaic". This followed a request for information on emails between the NSA and the National Geographic channel, following the latter broadcasting a documentary that was very friendly to the NSA. The intent was to investigate the NSA's PR efforts. Apparently the NSA can only search individual employees' mailboxes and cannot search all emails across the agency."
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+ - Microsoft may acquire Nook tablet business from Barnes and Noble->

Submitted by whoever57
whoever57 (658626) writes "According to a report in Techcrunch, Microsoft is considering buying out the remaining shares in Nook Media. Microsoft already owns 17% of Nook Media. Documents reveal that Nook Media plans to discontinue selling tablets and transition to a model under which media is distributed through partners."
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+ - No porn from public WiFi hotspots in the UK->

Submitted by whoever57
whoever57 (658626) writes "The Prime Minister of the UK is proposing that porn should not be available through WiFi hotspots in public areas. Exactly how this will be implemented has not been identified, even to the extent of whether the ISP or the hotspot operator should implement the blocking. The Children’s Charities Coalition has demanded urgent action on the issue."
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+ - Explaining the persistence of Microsoft in the Enterprise->

Submitted by whoever57
whoever57 (658626) writes "Galen Gruman writes in InfoWorld about the persistence of Microsoft technologies in the enterprise. He notices that IT groups are the most likely buyers fro Windows tablets, despite their users preference for Android and IOS tablets. He blames this on "in-breeding" within IT groups — who simply expect Microsoft technologies "to extend into the newfangled technologies such as mobile and cloud". IT groups, he writes, will wait for Microsft to deliver the technologies that are already available from other sources. He summarizes the status of Microsoft's offerings thus:
"It's clear Microsoft's strategy is to withhold its better technologies to force users to stick with the inferior Windows platforms. IT is waiting for that magic day when Microsoft's Windows delivers beyond the legacy desktop.
Users, meanwhile, have moved on. They'll buy more tablets than PCs this year, and adoption will only accelerate as users start augmenting their PCs at work with tablets, not just buy them for home use as is usually the case today"
"

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Apple

+ - European carriers complain to EU about anti-competitive contracts with Apple->

Submitted by whoever57
whoever57 (658626) writes "Several European phone carriers have complained to the EU about the contracts that Apple imposes on them if they want to sell the iPhone. Because the contracts stipulate a minimum purchase, and the carier must compensate Apple if they fail to sell through that minimum, it has the effect of forcing the carrier to promote iPhones ahead of alternative phones. The European Commission is monitoring the situation. Apple claims that its "contracts fully comply with local laws wherever we do business, including the E.U""
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Businesses

+ - Microsoft cuts the price of Windows 8 and Office in response to slow sales. -> 1

Submitted by whoever57
whoever57 (658626) writes "A report in ExtremeTech (quoting an article in the Wall Street Journal) details price cuts that Microsft has made for sales of Windows 8 and Office to OEMs in response to slow adoption. According to the report, the price of a dual pack of Windows 8 and Office for touchscreen devices under 10.8 inches has been cut to only $30 from the prior price of $120. The Wall Street Journal attributes the claim to anaonymous sources, hwever, other sites, including Digitimes report information that tends to confirm the original claim."
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