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Comment Re:Is it safe? (Score 4, Informative) 264

Isn't the contents of .docx files tied to the (proprietary, closed, secret, patented) algorithms within MS Word?

For example, you may be able to retrieve the text (not sure) but getting your formatting to look exactly like it did in MS Word, will require MS Word.

If you want proof, find another word processing app that can display it 100% compatible with MS Word without calling any code from MS Word.

Now explain how in 25 years time when most people vaguely remember what MS Word 2010 looked like or did, you will somehow open your .docx documents and have them look as they do now. If I know Microsoft at all, I know that the OOXML "Standard" will change (read: "extend") a LOT in 25 years.

Comment Re:Coinstar! (Score 1) 594

If you always keep a palm full of coins with you, and use them with coin transactions, over time you will not accumulate a huge number of coins. Over time you will always have a small collection of coins. But you have to have the ambition to actually carry some coins.
Linux

New Linux Petabyte-Scale Distributed File System 132

An anonymous reader writes "A recent addition to Linux's impressive selection of file systems is Ceph, a distributed file system that incorporates replication and fault tolerance while maintaining POSIX compatibility. Explore the architecture of Ceph and learn how it provides fault tolerance and simplifies the management of massive amounts of data."
Businesses

What the Top US Companies Pay In Taxes 658

theodp writes "If you've ever wondered how it's possible that you pay more to the IRS than General Electric, Forbes has an explanation. You, my friend, do not have the tax benefit of overseas operations. Microsoft, for example, has its overseas subsidiaries license software to its US parent company in return for handsome royalties that get taxed at lower overseas rates. Exxon limits its tax pain with the help of 20 wholly owned subsidiaries domiciled in the Bahamas, Bermuda, and the Cayman Islands that shelter cash flow from operations in the likes of Angola, Azerbaijan, and Abu Dhabi. As a result, of the $15B it paid in income taxes last year, Exxon paid none of it to Uncle Sam, and has tens of billions in earnings permanently reinvested overseas. Likewise, GE has $84B in overseas income parked indefinitely outside the US. Now quit your carping and get back to filling out that 1040!"
Censorship

Chinese Root Server Shut Down After DNS Problem 91

itwbennett writes "After a networking error first reported on Wednesday last week caused computers in Chile and the US to come under the control of a system that censors the Internet in China, the 'root DNS server associated with the networking problems has been disconnected from the Internet,' writes Robert McMillan. The server's operator, Netnod, has 'withdrawn route announcements' made by the server, according to company CEO Kurt Lindqvist."
Operating Systems

Multicore Requires OS Rework, Windows Expert Says 631

alphadogg writes "With chip makers continuing to increase the number of cores they include on each new generation of their processors, perhaps it's time to rethink the basic architecture of today's operating systems, suggested Dave Probert, a kernel architect within the Windows core operating systems division at Microsoft. The current approach to harnessing the power of multicore processors is complicated and not entirely successful, he argued. The key may not be in throwing more energy into refining techniques such as parallel programming, but rather rethinking the basic abstractions that make up the operating systems model. Today's computers don't get enough performance out of their multicore chips, Probert said. 'Why should you ever, with all this parallel hardware, ever be waiting for your computer?' he asked. Probert made his presentation at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign's Universal Parallel Computing Research Center."
Programming

Simpler "Hello World" Demonstrated In C 582

An anonymous reader writes "Wondering where all that bloat comes from, causing even the classic 'Hello world' to weigh in at 11 KB? An MIT programmer decided to make a Linux C program so simple, she could explain every byte of the assembly. She found that gcc was including libc even when you don't ask for it. The blog shows how to compile a much simpler 'Hello world,' using no libraries at all. This takes me back to the days of programming bare-metal on DOS!"
Censorship

Scientology Tries To Block German Documentary 565

eldavojohn writes "The Guardian is reporting on the strained relationship that Scientology is having with the German government and the airing of a pesky documentary on Southwest Broadcasting. Until Nothing Remains, a $2.3 million documentary, is slotted to air on German television at the end of this month. It recounts the true story of Heiner von Rönn and his family's suffering when he tried to leave the Church of Scientology. A Scientology spokesperson called the film false and intolerant and also said they are investigating legal means to stop the film from being aired. More details on the film can be gleaned here."
Cellphones

Tethering Is Exhilarating (With the Nexus One) 211

timothy found this link (hat-tip to Tim O'Reilly) to a paean to the joys of tethering. "In a short post, Steve Souders explores the current state of tethering 3G connections via iPhone (on which he basically gives up, for the perfectly decent reason of not wanting to jailbreak his iPhone) and the Nexus One, with which he has great success. His writeup serves as a micro-tutorial ('use PdaNet's Android app') as well as an endorsement."
Games

Dead Space 2 Announced 56

Electronic Arts announced on Monday that their popular survival-horror game Dead Space is officially getting a sequel. According to the press release, it's being developed for the PS3, Xbox 360 and PC. There's speculation that Dead Space 2 may include some form of multiplayer, after an EA job opening was spotted on LinkedIn that mentioned multiplayer level design for the franchise.
Google

Los Angeles Goes Google Apps With Microsoft Cash 266

Dan Jones writes "The Los Angeles City Council has approved a US$7.25 million, five-year deal with Google in which the city will adopt Gmail and other Google Apps. Interestingly, just over $1.5 million for the project will come from the payout of a 2006 class action lawsuit between the City and Microsoft (Microsoft paid $70 million three years ago to settle the suit by six California counties and cities who alleged that Microsoft used its monopoly position to overcharge for software). The city will migrate from Novell GroupWise e-mail servers. For security, Google will provide a new separate data environment called 'GovCloud' to store both applications and data in a completely segregated environment that will only be used by public agencies. This GovCloud would be encrypted and 'physically and logically segregated' from Google's standard applications. Has cloud computing stepped up to prime time?"
Software

Submission + - Comparing Microsoft and Apple Websites' Usability (infoq.com) 1

An anonymous reader writes: In the article entitled Apple vs. Microsoft — A Website Usability Study, Dmitry Fadeyev, co-founder of Pixelshell, compares Apple's and Microsoft's web sites from a usability perspective, and Apple is the winner. Scott Barnes, PM at Microsoft, agrees with him and suggests the problem is because various site sub-domains have different management.
Microsoft

Microsoft Drops Xbox 360 Pricing 169

Kawahee was one of several readers to tip news of a price cut for the Xbox 360. This comes after Sony dropped PS3 prices and unveiled the Slim model last week. The 360 Elite will now retail for $299, but will no longer ship with HD cables. The 360 Pro has been reduced to $249, but Microsoft is phasing it out. Analysts don't expect this new price point to be a huge boon for sales because the Elite doesn't match the PS3's hardware capabilities and is still more expensive than the Wii. Microsoft has "no plans" for a smaller version of the 360.
Wireless Networking

WPA Encryption Cracked In 60 Seconds 322

carusoj writes "Computer scientists in Japan say they've developed a way to break the WPA encryption system used in wireless routers in about one minute. Last November, security researchers first showed how WPA could be broken, but the Japanese researchers have taken the attack to a new level. The earlier attack worked on a smaller range of WPA devices and took between 12 and 15 minutes to work. Both attacks work only on WPA systems that use the Temporal Key Integrity Protocol (TKIP) algorithm. They do not work on newer WPA 2 devices or on WPA systems that use the stronger Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) algorithm."

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