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Censorship

Submission + - gov.au tells parents they too st00pid for intarweb

downundarob writes: Senator Nick Minchin , the Australian Shadow Minister for broadband, communications and the digital economy, has written (or more likely a staffer has written) this interesting article on the Australian Federal Governments continued zeal to enforce ISP level filtering in Australia. In the article he posits "Underlying the Rudd Government's plan to screen the internet is an offensive message: that parents cannot be trusted to mind their children online.". Meanwhile, we wait for filtering trials to start, trials that have been delayed and which have next-to-no support among the industry. Telstra BigPond — Australia's largest ISP — has refused to take part, comparing internet filtering to "like trying to boil the ocean". The third largest, iiNet, is prepared to participate to highlight flaws.

Comment Sounds like many jobs I've had... (Score 2, Insightful) 196

So Agent Mularski got a taste of what it's like to be a SysAdmin? I think it's a good thing, now he would understand what it's like to work in IT, he'll (hopefully) be more sympathetic to IT staff that he works with... We should get more Law-Enforcement officers into undercover IT "busts"!!!

Now, if he had a pager that would buzz him in the 6 hours he got "off" from the computer, that would be JUST like being a SysAdmin ;)

Government

Submission + - Researchers sound off on Obama and energy (ernmag.com)

Eric Smalley writes: "Energy in transition: researchers talk about Obama and our future — some appropriate messages on this day of transition
From the article:
I have been sitting with Steven Chu in a working group recently and have known John Holdren since my postdoc years in Berkeley (I am now 67) and hold them both in high esteem. I find it more difficult to imagine that the US can change to an energy efficient and energy conscious nation over the short time required. But I will hold my breath and see how it goes...
We need to all understand that if we don't do the fundamental science and engineering now the people of the future will not have alternatives — we'll be stuck with coal and oil, or nothing."

Education

Submission + - 16 Years out of school and work outsourced

festering_pustule writes: "I recently was notified that I get to be a "participant" in a workforce managment process (IE, my work got outsourced). I've been out of school for 16 years and since my (and several other people's) job got outsourced to a foreign country, I'm eligible for participation in the TAA (Trade Adjustment Act) and I was given a nice severance package (9 months pay). This will give me the opportunity to return to school with books, tuition, and unemployment benefits paid for approximately 2 years. I want to return to get a masters degree in CS with an emphasis on AI and software systems rather than seek a new job right away (I was a ClearCase admin for the past 9 years who supported some other inhouse tools — I really like SW development and want to return to that). I'm married, have 3 kids at home, and a house to unload. Does returning to earn an MS as described seem like a wise thing to do?"
The Internet

Submission + - SPAM: Cyber data mining catching fire

coondoggie writes: "The deep study and analysis of the vast amounts of online data continues to pick up steam. This week four research agencies teamed to develop an international competition they hope will heat up humanities and social science research using large-scale data analysis to develop international partnerships and explore vast digital resources, including electronic repositories of books, newspapers and photographs to identify opportunities for cyberscholarship. The group is just one of the latest to explore cyber data mining. The NSF recently said it is looking for highly interpretive technology to help all manner of government and private researchers evaluate the massive amounts of data generated in health care, computational biology, security and other fields. And the The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) said it wants to develop software known as a Machine Reading Program (MRP) that can capture knowledge from naturally occurring text and transform it into the formal representations used by AI reasoning systems. [spam URL stripped]"
Link to Original Source

Comment Note to Editors.... (Score 1) 1

I couldn't fit what I wanted in the submission title... should've been "Discoveries relating to T-Cell regulation may help prevent Organ rejection"...

Not sure what your word limit for article titles are... perhaps "Organ Transplant patients may be helped by new Discovery?".

Biotech

Submission + - T-Cells may help prevent Organ rejection. (garvan.org.au) 1

Klootzak writes: Scientists working at the Garvan Institute of Medical Research have potentially made a discovery that could help prevent Organ rejection in transplant patients.

The Research involved genetically engineering Mice to increase levels of the BAFF (B-Cell activating factor), which is utilised by the immune system to generate B-Cells (which produce antibodies). The Scientists subsequently observed that the Immune System of the Mice with the increased hormone level would alter the bodies response to cells that were not marked "self", by increasing the amount of "T" regulatory cells which are used by the body to suppress T-Cell activity (T-Cells are the body's "Killer" cells). It was also noted that the altered response did not seem to relate to a defect in the T-Cells themselves.

This discovery may lead to improved success rates in organ transplant patients by reducing the need for patients to be given immunosuppressive drugs which can sometimes have toxic affects and also prevent the body from fighting normal pathogens like bacteria and viruses.

Further Technical Detail can be found in the Journal of Immunology.

Space

Submission + - Giant Buried Glaciers On Mars (spacefellowship.com)

Toren Altair writes: "Scientists analyze the reflection of radar waves to characterize the Martian surface and subsurface layers of rocks, dust and ice. A radar capable of seeing deeply requires a very large antenna such as SHARAD's, which is 10 meters (32.8 feet) in length but weighs less than three kilograms (6.6 lbs).

Scientists analyzed data from the spacecraft's radar instrument and reported in the journal Science that glaciers cover miles of the Martian surface, extending from edges of mountains or cliffs. These recent glaciers were found at much closer to the equator than is stable at the surface given current Martian conditions. SHARAD is able to see through the surface layer of dust and rock that insulates and preserves the glaciers.

One of the glaciers is triple the size of the city of Los Angeles and up to a half-mile thick. The presence of large amounts of ice at these latitudes could be used as a source of water to support future exploration of the Red Planet."

Communications

Submission + - Belkin's President Apologizes for Faked Reviews 1

remove office writes: "After I wrote about how Belkin's Amazon.com sales rep Mike Bayard had been paying for fake reviews of his company's products using Mechanical Turk (Slashdot story here), hundreds of readers across the web expressed their umbrage. As a result of the online outcry, Belkin's president Mark Reynoso has issued a statement apologizing and saying that "this is an isolated incident" and that "Belkin does not participate in, nor does it endorse, unethical practices like this." Amazon moved swiftly to remove several reviews on Belkin products it believed were fraudulent, although now fresh evidence of astroturfing has surfaced. Now I'm curious: what steps do Slashdotters think that online retailers can do to protect themselves and their customers from fake reviews?"
Power

Submission + - Energy Star or Black Hole? (deviceguru.com)

Martin Hellman writes: "Energy Star or Black Hole?

Yesterday's DeviceGuru.com feature raises questions about the EPA's Energy Star program. For example, an Energy Star compliant TV that claims to draw 0.1 watts in sleep mode appears to do that — but only seems to sleep about 25% of the time that it is "off." The other 75% of the time it draws about 20 watts, for an effective sleep power draw of 15 watts from the user's perspective.

Based on the observations described, it is also questionable how many PC's really are sleeping when their screens are blank, even if the user has turned sleep mode on. Given the billions of dollars and tons of CO2 that are at stake, this situation demands more attention."

Comment Apologies for the AC post. (Score 2, Insightful) 276

Easy. You're "Anonymous Coward". You're anyone and no one.

Well, even posting under my Slashdot "handle" I could be everyone and no-one too ;)

A novice administrator would know this. I think you've been talking to the average joeish end users.

No, the person I had to correct that issue for considered himself an "experienced" Linux Administrator (and Zealot - "Linux should be used for EVERYTHING"), having worked with various distros for 3 or 4 years. He was also employed by the Victorian Department of Education at the time - the problem he was having was at a client he was moonlighting for. I was the poor Bastard who had to drive on-site when he eventually called me for help at 8pm on Saturday after he'd spent a good 10 hours working on the issue (mind you, I walked away with $100 in cash for typing 'chmod -R ug+w [directory]', so it was inconvenient, but lucrative).

The assumption you're making is that just because someone uses Linux, they also understand the underlying design of the technology that it is integrated with... not everyone understands filesystem permissions, you'd probably be surprised, like I always say... Computers/Operating-Systems/Applications are a "tool" - to be the most effective, you need to understand the function of the tool in addition to it's application.

Comment I didn't ask that... (Score 1) 276

I didn't ask if Samba had AD support... I asked why the PP thought this was a "Good Thing"... Because an Open-Source product was integrating itself with a Non-Standard one that Microsoft produces?

Not that I mind really, I just think it's not that great of a leap ahead for Open Source Software, just more Integration with Commercial Closed-Source software that already exists.

Do you understand that a "Directory" and SMB are two different things?

Comment Re:About Time... (Score 2, Insightful) 276

Perhaps Linux is used ALOT more than you think, you're just not aware of the installations ;)

I know of at least 2 places which are very large and influential organizations that run ALOT of Linux and other Open-Source Systems - in one of the organizations I'm thinking of I implemented Linux in combination with MRTG, PHP and MYSQL for an application I wrote for the purposes of systems monitoring and server inventory, something I whipped up because Tivoli, a large, expensive "enterprise" product was proving too cumbersome and taking too long to implement and my Management needed something RealSoonNow(tm) to do the job.
Unfortunately though, Non-Disclosure, and fear of being publicly identified prevents me from citing the organization(s) by name.

Linux is used in quite a number of places, but it doesn't get the big "The Department of xyz for the pqr Government is installing Linux" publicity.

Don't despair, Linux is making waves, you just can't see the ripples ;)

Oh and Linux has its own Directory functionality, it's OpenLDAP. It's just not necessarily as easy to maintain as Open/Active Directory.

No offense intended... but I did say that in my original post ;)

Comment Re:About Time... (Score 2, Insightful) 276

But it's still good news,

Why is it good news? Is the Open-Source community embracing the concept "If you can't beat 'em join 'em?".

Pish-Posh, Linux can have, and has its own "Directory" functionality, and the members of the OS community are more than capable of implementing their own standards.
My opinion of this is that it's good for cross-compatibility, but not so much that it advances the concept that OSS products can compete in their own right.

I will be more impressed when Microsoft adds standards compatibility for integration with Open-Source standards and not the other way around.

Space

Submission + - First Earth-Size Exoplanet Already Found? (blogspot.com)

Adam Korbitz writes: "

New Scientist is reporting the extrasolar planet MOA-2007-BLG-192Lb — whose discovery was announced just last summer — may actually be the first truly Earth-sized exoplanet to be identified.

According to New Scientist, a new analysis suggests the planet weighs less than half the original estimate of 3.3 Earth masses. The new estimate — which scientists hope to confirm with more observations in the near future — peg the planet's size at 1.4 Earth masses.

The new estimate is the result of recent observations suggesting the planet's host star is more massive than originally thought, meaning the planet must be smaller than scientists originally estimated. Astronomers first thought the host star was a tiny brown dwarf , but now realize it is actually a red dwarf.

The planet orbits a small red dwarf star some 3,000 light-years distant and orbits its host star at a distance of 0.62 astronomical units (an astronomical unit is the distance from the Earth to the Sun, or about 93 million miles) — about the same distance as Venus from our Sun. One significance of the planet's discovery is that it points to the probable ubiquity of smaller terrestrial planets in somewhat Earth-like orbits — at least when it comes to red dwarf stars, the oldest and most numerous stars in the galaxy. Scientists don't think MOA-2007-BLG-192Lb is likely to harbor life but concede it may be habitable due to a probably thick atmosphere and possible oceans.

Astronomers first discovered the planet using a technique called gravitational microlensing, a technique that may be sensitive enough to detect planets with masses one-tenth that of Earth.

"

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