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Today's Children Are Officially Potty Mouths 449

tetrahedrassface writes "When the Sociolinguistics Symposium met earlier this month swearing scholar Timothy Jay revealed that an increase in child swearing is directly related to an increase in adult swearing. It seems that vulgarity is increasing as pop culture continues to popularize vulgarities. The blame lies with media, public figures, politicians, but mostly ourselves. From the article: 'Children as young as two are now dropping f-bombs, with researchers reporting that more kids are using profanity — and at earlier ages — than has been recorded in at least three decades.'"
Privacy

Introducing the Invulnerable Evercookie 332

An anonymous reader writes "Using eight different techniques and locations, a 'security' guy has developed a cookie that is very, very hard to delete. If just one copy of the cookie remains, the other locations are rebuilt. My favorite storage location is in 'RGB values of auto-generated, force-cached PNGs using HTML5 Canvas tag to read pixels (cookies) back out' — awesome."

Comment Re:Follow the money (Score 1) 473

Evidence? A smoking gun in this case would be pretty difficult to find unless there are leaked emails or documents showing pressure from suppliers. If Dell is smart about this, they will not come out and say anything inflammatory. In the end the reasoning behind the decision is not even that important.

Personally, I thought it was just a matter of time, as this was primarily a marketing experiment to cash in on a perceived hot commodity (Linux).

Communications

Bandwidth Fines Bad, But Not Net Neutrality Issue 159

Frequent Slashdot contributor Bennett Haselton writes with his take on the recent Time Warner Cable fiasco: "Net Neutrality crusaders at FreePress.net recently called attention to Time Warner's plan (later rescinded) to impose fines on users for going over bandwidth limits. I agree generally, but I think this is easily confused with the reasoning in favor of Net Neutrality, and it's important to keep the arguments separate." Read on for the rest of Bennett's thoughts.
Networking

US ISPs Using Push Polling To Stop Cheap Internet 417

An anonymous reader writes "What happens when a new ISP is started somewhere in the United States that completely blows out of the water all the other ISPs in the area, in terms of price and performance? Apparently, that question is being answered in North Carolina, where Greenlight Inc., a company started by a city government, is trying to offer faster, more reliable, and cheaper Internet service to the local residents. Time Warner and Embarq can't compete. So they are not only lobbying the state government to destroy the upstart competition, but are now using push polling methods to gain support, across the two cities that could benefit from the new ISP, for the 'Level the playing field' legislation they got introduced in the legislature." A local news outlet provides coverage more friendly to the incumbents' point of view.
The Internet

Using the Internet To Subvert Democracy 202

david_adams writes "All the recent talk about various polls and elections being pranked or hijacked, serious and silly alike, prompted me to write an article about the technical realities behind online polling, and the political fallout of ever becoming subject to online voting for serious elections. Even if we were to be able to limit voting to legitimate, legal voters, the realities of social networking and the rise of Internet-based movements would dramatically alter the political landscape if online voting were to become commonplace."
Businesses

Drug Company Merck Drew Up Doctor "Hit List" 281

Philip K Dickhead sends in a piece from the Australian media, a couple of weeks old, that hasn't seen much discussion here. In a class-action lawsuit in Australia against Merck for its Vioxx anti-arthritis drug, information has come out that the company developed a "hit list" of doctors who had expressed anything but enthusiasm for the drug. Vioxx was withdrawn from the market in 2004 because it causes heart attacks and strokes. Merck settled a class action in the US for $4.85 billion but did not admit guilt. "An international drug company made a hit list of doctors who had to be 'neutralized' or discredited because they criticized the anti-arthritis drug the pharmaceutical giant produced. Staff at US company Merck & Co. emailed each other about the list of doctors — mainly researchers and academics — who had been negative about the drug Vioxx or Merck and a recommended course of action. The email, which came out in the Federal Court in Melbourne yesterday as part of a class action against the drug company, included the words 'neutralize,' 'neutralized,' or 'discredit' against some of the doctors' names. It is also alleged the company used intimidation tactics against critical researchers, including dropping hints it would stop funding to institutions and claims it interfered with academic appointments. 'We may need to seek them out and destroy them where they live,' a Merck employee wrote, according to an email excerpt read to the court by Julian Burnside QC, acting for the plaintiff."

Comment Re:Time machine also patented (Score 1) 285

As a patent attorney who deals with the PTO on a daily basis, you should already know that many worse patents have already been approved. This particular article may be old news, but that does not negate the fact that Monsanto already has quite a few questionable and frightening patents.

Their attempt to patent a pig is reason enough to get pissed and discuss it, even if it is "old news".

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Biotech Company To Patent Pigs 285

Anonymous Swine writes "Monsanto, a US based multinational biotech company, is causing a stir by its plan to patent pig-breeding techniques including the claim on animals born by the techniques. 'Agricultural experts are scrambling to assess how these patents might affect the market, while consumer activists warn that if the company is granted pig-related patents, on top of its tight rein on key feed and food crops, its control over agriculture could be unprecedented. "We're afraid that Monsanto and other big companies are getting control of the world's genetic resources," said Christoph Then, a patent expert with Greenpeace in Germany. The patent applications, filed with the World Intellectual Property Organization, are broad in scope, and are expected to take several years and numerous rewrites before approval.'"
Power

Vatican To Build 100 Megawatt Solar Power Plant 447

Karim Y. writes "The Vatican is going solar in a big way. The tiny state recently announced that it intends to spend 660 million dollars to create what will effectively be Europe's largest solar power plant. This massive 100 megawatt photovoltaic installation will provide enough energy to make the Vatican the first solar powered nation state in the world! 'The 100 megawatts unleashed by the station will supply about 40,000 households. That will far outstrip demand by Pope Benedict XVI and the 900 inhabitants of the 0.2 square-mile country nestled across Rome's Tiber River. The plant will cover nine times the needs of Vatican Radio, whose transmission tower is strong enough to reach 35 countries including Asia.'"
The Internet

Submission + - Oracle+MySQL = database monopoly?

ericatcw writes: "Oracle Corp.'s $7.4 billion acquisition of Sun Microsystems Inc. will bring together the world's most valuable relational database with the most popular one — MySQL. Should that raise anti-trust flags? Not according to experts polled by Computerworld, citing MySQL's miniscule revenue and Oracle's less-than-dominant grip on the database market. That doesn't mean Oracle won't institute unwelcome changes at MySQL, however."
Space

E-Merlin "Super-Telescope" Switched On 41

Smivs writes to tell us that one of the world's most powerful telescope arrays has been switched on with great success. Seven radio telescopes in the UK have been linked with optical fiber, replacing the older microwave tech that connected them previously. One researcher compared the move to a broadband upgrade from dial-up. Research teams will now be able to do in one day what previously took them three years.

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