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Programming

Submission + - Linux kernel 2.6.23 to have stable userspace drive

liquidat writes: "Linus Torvalds included patches into the mainline tree which implement a stable userspace driver API into the Linux kernel. The stable driver API was already announced a year ago by Greg Kroah-Hartman. Now the last patches where uploaded and the API was included in Linus tree. The idea of the API is to make life easier for driver developers:

This interface allows the ability to write the majority of a driver in userspace with only a very small shell of a driver in the kernel itself. It uses a char device and sysfs to interact with a userspace process to process interrupts and control memory accesses.
(more...)"
Security

Submission + - Court orders dismissal of U.S. wiretapping lawsuit (computerworld.com)

jcatcw writes: A U.S. appeals court has ordered the dismissal of a lawsuit against the U.S. National Security Agency for a wiretapping program because it said the plaintiffs haven't been hurt by the agency's actions. A divided three-judge panel for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit ruled today that the lawsuit, brought by the American Civil Liberties Union and a group of journalists, lawyers and academics, be sent back to a District Court judge to be dismissed. In August 2006, Judge Anna Diggs Taylor of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan ruled that the NSA program, which monitored telephone and Internet communications without court-ordered warrants, was illegal.
Security

Submission + - MediaDefender denies entrapment (arstechnica.com)

Jeek Elemental writes: ArsTechnica reports on the Miivi.com site, MediaDefender says it was for internal testing only.
Apparently, they decided to take down the site and change the whois record to avoid hacker attacks and spam.
As expected, the MPAA says: "The Media Defender story is false. We have no relationship with that company at all."
Wonder what they were testing that required a spyware client and a registered domain...

Article here:
http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20070706-medi adefender-denies-entrapment-accusations-with-fake- torrent-site.html

User Journal

Journal SPAM: Fox News: Universal health care breeds terrorists. 37

Today on Fox News's Your World With Neil Cavuto, National Review Online columnist Jerry Bowyer attacked Michael Moore's movie SiCKO and its positive portrayal of the health care in countries such as Britain and France. He argued that national health care systems are breeding grounds for terrorists because they are "bureaucratic." "I think the terrorists have shown over and over again...they're very good at gaming the system with bureaucracies," said Bowyer.

Media

Submission + - University boffins squeeze 500GB onto a DVD (theregister.co.uk) 1

JagsLive writes: theRegister reports, "The University of Berlin, with partners Budapest University of Technology and Economics and Universita Politecnica delle Marche in Italy, has managed to work out how to store 500GB of data on a regular HD DVD or Blu-ray disc. By applying wavelength multiplexing techniques to multi-layer disc structures, very high storage densities can be achieved, Professor Susanna Orlic told German site Pressetext. The 500GB prototype has 50 data-storage layers. Orl said the technology has the potential to store one terabyte (1TB) of data."
Networking

Submission + - Germany passes "Anti-Hacker" law

RotHorseKid writes: German legislators have just passed the much-dreaded "Hacker Paragraph", which essentially says that all software that can potentially used as a "Hacker Tool" is outlawed. Somehow these IT-savvy legislators missed the fact that most of these tools are also used for intrusion detection. So, essentially all german Security Consultants, Network Administrators and other users of intrusion detection software are halfway in jail now.
It's funny.  Laugh.

Submission + - Russian Armoured Vehicle running on screws

An anonymous reader writes: Here is Russian armored military vehicle from the seventies which runs on a pair of giant screws. It was an old russian prototype of off-road vehicle which never made it to the production line. From the video it looks to be more maneuverable than a modern tank.
GNOME

Submission + - How to shoot yourself in the foot the GNOME way

An anonymous reader writes: If you remember the story about hot to shoot yourself in the foot in deferent computer languages. Well this will be great addition after a I've had to work in GNOME environment for several hours.

We at the GNOME project are constantly looking to improve our users experience.By doing a very complicated analysis of the procedure "shooting yourself in the foot", and taking in consideration that:
- There are variables like, angle of fire, the foot position relative to the body, the foot position relative to ground. the type of gun and ammunition used, how steady the hand of the user is, and about 42 others
We decided:
- The user cannot be trusted to perform such complex task as "shoot yourself in the foot" and achieve perfect results, because it is impossible to manage so many variables by himself and even he can become scared and never shoot himself in the foot.
Thats why by studding the output of "cat /dev/random" we found the perfect balance between the variables. And now every user will be shot in the foot on sight with our perfect hard coded implementation of the void shoot-myself-in-the-foot();
Music

Submission + - Prince to give new album away for free

Bert the Turtle writes: "The artist formally known as Prince is planning to give his newest album away for free with a major British newspaper and to thousands of gig-goers. Spokespeople for the entertainment industry have suggested that this might incur sanctions. Some more details here"
Movies

Submission + - Proposed Amendment Would Ban All DVD Copying (pcmag.com)

akkarin writes: PcMag has an interesting yet worrying article about a proposed amendment, which, if passed, would ban all DVD copying — yes, even 'backups'. From the article:

The proposed amendment was made public in a letter sent by Michael Malcolm, the chief executive of Kaleidescape, a DVD jukebox company which successfully defeated a suit by the DVD Copy Control Association (DVD CCA) this past March. The proposed amendment is scheduled for a vote on Wednesday, according to Malcolm.

Is this the end of legal DVD backups?

Education

Submission + - Firstborn Get the Brains

Dekortage writes: "Eldest children have higher IQs than their siblings, according to a recent study by Norwegian researchers. The study focused on men, particularly "on teasing out the biological effects of birth order from the effects of social status," but indicates that the senior boy in a family (either by being firstborn, or if an elder brother died) has an average IQ two or three points higher than younger brothers. As noted in the New York Times coverage, "Experts say it can be a tipping point for some people — the difference between a high B average and a low A, for instance... that could mean the difference between admission to an elite private college and a less exclusive public one.""
Linux Business

Submission + - San Diego rolls out laptops with Linux (repair4printer.org)

Printer Hacker writes: "Currently Dell gets all the hype about offering just one laptop pre-equipped with Linux. But silently there is a project using Linux on a bunch of laptops already, eSchool News writes: "Looking for a cost-effective way to deliver portable computing to every student, the San Diego Unified School District is installing machines with desktop Linux and other open-source software. In turning to open source, San Diego joins a growing number of school systems aiming to extend computing resources affordably to more users." And just in case you are neither a student nor want a Dell laptop, here is an international survey of companies selling laptops with Linux pre-installed."
Novell

Submission + - Final Draft of GPLv3 Allows Novell-Microsoft Deal (zdnet.co.uk)

famicommie writes: All of Novell's fingernail biting has been for naught. In a stunning display of forgiveness and bridge building on behalf of the FSF, zdnet reports that the final draft of the GPLv3 will close the infamous MS-Novell loophole while allowing deals made prior to continue. From the article:
'The final, "last-call" GPLv3 draft bans only future deals for what it described as "tactical" reasons in a 32-page explanation of changes. That means Novell doesn't have to worry about distributing software in SLES that's governed by the GPLv3.'

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