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Networking

Submission + - ARRL VS FCC over BPL! (arrl.org)

Brew Bird writes: "From the 'Power Lines are not for Data' department —
This has been going on for years, but it's finally made it to the courts! The ARRL (Ham radio guys for the unknowing) has managed to drag the FCC into court over their 'waiver' that allows noisy BPL operators to pollute the radio spectrum with impunity. Some Broad Band Power Line systems create annoying radio frequency noise that interferes with existing radio gear. The FCC is SUPPOSED to have these systems shut down until they can be repaired, but has been loath to do so. So, After all the proper 'legal' avenues have been exhausted, the FCC has been hauled in front of a judge to explain just why it's 'ok' for the power company to jam radio systems, but no one else can."

Television

Submission + - Why Can't I buy a cablecard ready set top box? (arstechnica.com) 1

Al E Usse writes: "Ars Technica does a write up of the problems that haven't been solved by the July 1, 2007 integration ban on integrated security in your cable box. Three months after the ban went into effect, digging up a third-party, CableCARD-ready set-top box can be an exercise in hair-pulling frustration. The companies who make the boxes don't seem interested in selling to consumers, cable companies still push their own branded devices, and Best Buy employees... well, the less said the better. We've heard the pain of our readers on this issue. One of them described his own epic (and fruitless) quest to secure such a device. His conclusion? "Although I should be able to buy a set-top box of my own, nobody will sell me one. I am standing on the doorstep, wad of cash in hand, yelling, 'Please take my money! I want to buy!' but am turned away."
The Internet

Submission + - Online Poker Room Caught Cheating -Absolute Poker (nytimes.com) 1

gus spangles writes: Absolute Poker, one of the major online poker rooms, has been caught cheating. Allowing some players the ability to see other people's cards. Absolute had issued a public statement denying the claims after an internal investigation but then provided self incriminating evidence to an outside researcher that implicated them beyond any doubts.
Even more shocking is that all early information points to it being an internal job headed possibly by former(current?) owners of the site. Credit to crazymarco, wacokid, n82, snagglepuss, adanthar, and others who have helped in this investigation.
Steven Levitt's nytimes blog writeup of the situation
solid summary of how some of the information was obtained on n82's blog
youtube video of a recreation from the hand history files of one of the instances of cheating in a $1,000 entry online poker tourney on absolute
latest discussion thread on 2+2 where the story was uncovered

Security

Submission + - Student Who Uncovers Breach Escapes Expulsion (pcworld.com)

mikesd81 writes: "PC world reports that a student at Western Oregon University who accidentally discovered a file containing personal data on a publicly accessible university server and then handed that data over to the student newspaper has narrowly escaped being expelled for his actions.

Brian Loving, stumbled upon a file containing the names, Social Security numbers and grade point averages of between 50 to 100 students on a publicly accessible university server in June. Loving downloaded a copy of what he discovered and handed it over to the Western Oregon Journal, the campus newspaper. Though the paper's final publication date for the academic year had already passed, it decided to publish a four-page special report with an article describing Loving's discovery. No names of any of the students were published in the article.

Two months into the investigation, Loving — who is now a staffer with the newspaper — was found to have broken a university computer use policy that prohibits unauthorized people from accessing confidential files that may have been inadvertently placed in a publicly accessible location."

Space

Submission + - ISS Expedition 15 Crew Snap Dramatic Cloud Photos

An anonymous reader writes: From their silent orbit high above planet Earth (via), International Space Station (ISS) astronauts have a unique view and perspective of events on Earth. On 20 August 2007 the Expedition 15 crew aboard ISS witnessed stunning and huge clouds formed over Earth. Five pictures were taken, listed here in time order, giving us the opportunity to share in the spectacular scene: #1, #2, #3, #4, #5, and the via which includes links to larger photos, and links to the original NASA images. And finally, look at this beautiful and interesting cloud pattern over Earth, photographed on 11 August 2007 during Space Shuttle Endeavour's STS-118 mission: #6 (via), #7 (via).
Google

Submission + - Google revoking DRM permissions on bought videos! 1

DoofusOfDeath writes: A few months ago I purchased a great Discovery Channel video from Google's downloadable video service. Sure I can't media-shift it, but I was willing to trade away some fair-use rights so my kids could see the video. I paid cash, they give me the video. End of story, right?

Wrong. Today I got this email (see below). It just goes to show that with DRM, there's little limit to the evil that can be done to you:

Hello,

As a valued Google user, we're contacting you with some important information about the videos you've purchased or rented from Google Video. In an effort to improve all Google services, we will no longer offer the ability to buy or rent videos for download from Google Video, ending the DTO/DTR (download-to-own/rent) program. This change will be effective August 15, 2007.

To fully account for the video purchases you made before July 18, 2007, we are providing you with a Google Checkout bonus for $20. Your bonus expires in 60 days, and you can use it at the stores listed here: http://www.google.com/checkout/signupwelcome.html. The minimum purchase amount must be equal to or greater than your bonus amount, before shipping and tax.

After August 15, 2007, you will no longer be able to view your purchased or rented videos.

If you have further questions or requests, please do not hesitate to contact us. Thank you for your continued support.

Sincerely,

The Google Video Team

Google Inc.
1600 Amphitheatre Parkway
Mountain View, CA 94043
Oracle

Submission + - Oracle contributes Linux code, expands hardware su

Jaden writes: Oracle expanded the list of hardware compatible with its Linux distribution and added support for Novell's YAST administration tool. The certified six hardware configurations to run Oracle Enterprise Linux. Certified products include those made by Compellent Technologies, Dell, Egenera, EMC, Hewlett-Packard, Pillar Data Systems and Unisys. The company also said it is making a file system tuned for large storage configurations available under an open-source license. Called the Btrfs file system, Oracle made an alpha release available Oracle also said it is releasing an open-source version of the YAST Linux installation and configuration tool for Oracle Enterprise Linux and Red Hat Enterprise Linux under the General Public License.
Windows

Submission + - Evil Software - Whoa! (hatrack.com)

cwsulliv writes: "Can software be evil? Noted author Orson Scott Card (Ender's Game, Speaker For The Dead) apparently thinks so, and has choice words for Microsoft Vista. Here are a couple of quotes from the last few paragraphs of his (long) weekly column at http://www.hatrack.com/osc/reviews/everything/2007 -07-29.shtml
        Vista itself is so evil that I find myself infuriated continuously.
        So I'm fed up. I'm getting Linux. Microsoft's arrogant incompetence has finally brought me to the point of no return. "

Amiga

Submission + - Amiga in an FPGA released under GPL (hetnet.nl) 2

exolon42 writes: This is a mandatory read for every (former or current) Amiga hacker. You have to give it to the Dutch: tulips, cheese, and now a guy named Dennis has recreated the original Amiga chipset in a Xilinx Spartan-3 FPGA, and recently released all sources under the GPL to boot! This includes the design of a PCB containing the FPGA, the required MC68000 and normal PC-style hardware connectors so you can build your own. A thought-provoking fact is that the Verilog-sources for the recreated chips (Denise, Paula, Agnus etc.) are only around 500-1000 lines each... chips in the eighties didn't contain 1 billion transistors!

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