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Cellphones

iPhone Users Angry Over AT&T Upgrade Policy 789

All is not sweetness and light in the wake of the Apple WWDC kickoff announcements, especially concerning the evolution of the iPhone. Reader Hugh Pickens writes: "AT&T will offer the new iPhone 3G S when it debuts later this month at a cost of $199 and $299 for the 16GB and 32GB models, but only to new customers and those who qualify for the discounted price. AT&T subscribers with an iPhone 3G who are not eligible for an upgrade — those not near the end of their two-year contracts — will have to pay $200 more — $399 for the 16GB model and $499 for the 32GB model. 'This is ridiculous and slap in the face to long-time loyal iPhone customers like me who switched from T-Mobile and the only reason was the iPhone,' writes one unhappy iPhone customer. 'We have to mount a vigorous campaign to change this policy. Call your local AT&T and ask for the manager and complain. Send e-mails and post in forums everywhere.' The issue is spurring heavy debate on support discussion forums, with some customers supporting AT&T. 'The option you have is to honor the contract you freely committed yourself to,' says one forum member. 'If you want to upgrade early then you will have to pay full price with no subsidy discount. You can't blame anyone but yourself for your predicament.'"

Comment Open Source Competitors (Score 5, Informative) 120

When the submitter referenced "open source alternatives that go by similar names", he was referring to ophcrack. Similar features are also available from Cain and Abel, and John the Ripper.

I maintain a list of top password crackers and sniffers as part of my SecTools.Org site.

While the submitter is correct that they have much more competition now, I still wish to congratulate the former L0pht guys on the new release!

Spam

FTC Targets Massive Car Warranty Robocall Scheme 361

coondoggie writes "Robocalls are a scourge, and the Federal Trade Commission today took action against one outfit by asking a federal court to shut down companies that have been bombarding consumers with hundreds of millions of allegedly deceptive robocalls in an effort to sell vehicle service contracts. According to the FTC, the robocalls have prompted tens of thousands of complaints from consumers who are either on the Do Not Call Registry or asked not to be called. Five telephone numbers associated with the defendants have generated a total of 30,000 Do Not Call complaints. Consumers received the robocalls at home, work, and on their cell phones, sometimes several times in one day. Businesses, government offices and even 911 dispatchers also have been subjected to the calls, the FTC said." Reader powerlord points out that another such company, not named in the FTC filing, raised the ire of thousands of internet-goers, who struck back by rickrolling the company's voice mail and digging up personal information on the company's president.
The Courts

US Trustee Asks To Send SCO Into Chapter 7 259

Several readers including Pop69 inform us that the US Trustee's office has asked to convert SCO's Chapter 11 bankruptcy to Chapter 7 — a.k.a. liquidation. Groklaw has the text of the filing: "...not only is there no reasonable chance of 'rehabilitation' in these cases, the Debtors have tried — and failed — to liquidate their business in chapter 11."
Media

Would You Pay For YouTube Videos? 475

secmartin writes "A couple of weeks ago, Google's CEO mentioned to investors that they might start charging YouTube's users for viewing content: 'With respect to how it will get monetized, our first priority, as you pointed out, is on the advertising side. We do expect over time to see micro payments and other forms of subscription models coming as well. But our initial focus is on advertising. We will be announcing additional things in that area literally very, very soon.' With the recent Disney-Hulu deal, Google is under increasing pressure to generate more revenue and at the same time attract more premium content. That means we might see payment options coming even sooner than expected, with control over the pricing models being handed over to the studios providing that content, like the way Apple caved in over variable pricing on iTunes. This raises an important question: would you actually pay for premium content on YouTube and other sites, or will this draw viewers away to other video sites?"
Math

Baby Chicks Have Innate Mathematical Skills 184

Hugh Pickens writes "Chicks can add and subtract small numbers shortly after hatching, says Rosa Rugani at the University of Trento. Rugani reared chicks with five plastic containers of the kind found inside Kinder chocolate eggs. This meant the chicks bonded with the capsules, much as they do with their mother, making them want to be near the containers as they grew up. In one test, the researchers moved the containers back and forth behind two screens while the chicks watched. When the chicks were released into the enclosure, they headed for the screen obscuring the most containers, suggesting they had been able to keep track of the number of capsules behind each by adding and subtracting them as they moved. It is already known that many non-human primates and monkeys can count, and even domestic dogs have been found to be capable of simple additions but this is the first time the ability has been seen in such young animals, and with no prior training in problem solving of any kind."
Education

Narcissistic College Graduates In the Workplace? 1316

SpuriousLogic writes "I work as a senior software engineer, and a fair amount of my time is spent interviewing new developers. I have seen a growing trend of what I would call 'TV reality' college graduates — kids who graduated school in the last few years and seem to have a view of the workplace that is very much fashioned by TV programs, where 22-year-olds lead billion-dollar corporate mergers in Paris and jet around the world. Several years ago I worked at a company that did customization for the software they sold. It was not full-on consultant work, but some aspects of it were 'consulting light,' and did involve travel, some overseas. Almost every college graduate I interviewed fully expected to be sent overseas on their first assignment. They were very disappointed when told they were most likely to end up in places like Decater, IL and Cedar Rapids, IA, as only the most senior people fly overseas, because of the cost. Additionally, I see people in this age bracket expecting almost constant rewards. One new hire told me that he thought he had a good chance at an award because he had taught himself Enterprise Java Beans. When told that learning new tech is an expected part of being a developer, he argued that he had learned it by himself, and that made it different. So today I see an article about the growing narcissism of students, and I want to ask this community: are you seeing the sorts of 'crashing down to Earth' expectations of college grads described here? Is working with this age bracket more challenging than others? Do they produce work that is above or below your expectations of a recent college grad?" We discussed a similar question from the point of view of the young employees a few months back.
Medicine

Stimulus Avoids Serious Solutions For Health IT 184

ivaldes3 writes in to note his post up on Linux Medical News, pointing out the severe shortcomings of the Health IT provisions of the just-passed stimulus bill. "The government has authorized enough money to purchase EMR freedom for the nation. Instead the government appears set to double down on proprietary lock-down. The government currently appears poised to purchase serfdom instead of freedom and performance for patients, practitioners and the nation. An intellectual and financial servitude to proprietary EMR companies for little or no gain. A truly bad bargain."
Privacy

Should Job Seekers Tell Employers To Quit Snooping? 681

onehitwonder writes in with a CIO opinion piece arguing that potential employees need to stand up to employers who snoop the Web for insights into their after-work activities, often disqualifying them as a result. "Employers are increasingly trolling the web for information about prospective employees that they can use in their hiring decisions. Consequently, career experts advise job seekers to not post any photos, opinions or information on blogs and social networking websites (like Slashdot) that a potential employer might find remotely off-putting. Instead of cautioning job seekers to censor their activity online, we job seekers and defenders of our civil liberties should tell employers to stop snooping and to stop judging our behavior outside of work, writes CIO.com Senior Online Editor Meridith Levinson. By basing professional hiring decisions on candidates' personal lives and beliefs, employers are effectively legislating people's behavior, and they're creating an online environment where people can't express their true beliefs, state their unvarnished opinions, be themselves, and that runs contrary to the free, communal ethos of the Web. Employers that exploit the Web to snoop into and judge people's personal lives infringe on everyone's privacy, and their actions verge on discrimination."
Biotech

The 300 Million Year Old Brain 68

Pickens writes "Paleontologists recently discovered the world's oldest brain nestled within a 300-million-year-old fish fossil of one of the extinct relatives of modern ratfishes, also known as 'host sharks' or chimaeras. These chimaera relatives, called iniopterygians, represented bizarre beasts that sported massive skulls with huge eye sockets, shark-like teeth in rows, tails with clubs, huge pectoral fins that were placed almost on their backs, and bone-like spikes or hooks tipping the fins. The brain shows details such as a large vision lobe and optic nerve stretching to the proper place on the braincase, which fits with the fish's large eye sockets. The ear canals of the extinct fish only exist on a horizontal plane so the fish could only detect side-to-side movements, and not up or down. 'There is nothing like this known today; it is really bizarre,' said John Maisey, paleontologist at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City. 'But now that we know that brains might be preserved in such ancient fossils, we can start looking for others. We are limited in information about early vertebrate brains, and the evolution of the brain lies at the core of vertebrate history.'"
Image

Crocodiles With Frickin' Magnets Attached to Their Heads Screenshot-sm 304

Brickwall writes "Florida, faced with a problem of crocodiles returning to residential neighborhoods after being relocated elsewhere, is trying to solve it by affixing magnets to the crocs' heads. The theory is the crocodiles use the Earth's magnetic field for navigation, and the magnets may interfere with that. What I'd like to know is, whose job is it to put the magnets on?" So far the magnet program appears to be working, unfortunately the crocs have started to collect huge amounts of take-out menus and child artwork.
Portables (Apple)

MacBook's "Unremovable" Battery Easy To Remove 476

Slatterz writes "Going just a bit further than your average unboxing, someone has stripped a new 17-inch Apple Macbook Pro to its component parts revealing one or two little surprises. The biggest of which is that the built-in battery is easily accessible, requiring the tinkerer to remove just the 13 Philips screws which hold the bottom cover in place, and the three tri-wing security screws which hold the battery in place."
Networking

OpenDNS To Block and Monitor Conficker Worm 175

Linker3000 writes "According to The Register, OpenDNS plans to introduce an new service that will prevent PCs infected with the Conficker (aka Downadup) malware from contacting its control servers, and will also make it easy for admins to know if even a single machine under their control has been infected by Conficker: 'Starting Monday, any networks with PCs that try to connect to the Conficker addresses will be flagged on an admin's private statistics page. The service is available for free to both businesses and home users.' With the amount of trouble this worm has caused, perhaps this is a good time to take a look at OpenDNS if you haven't done so already."
Television

Comcast Apologizes For Super Bowl Porn Glitch 526

DrinkDr.Pepper writes "Just after the last touchdown by the Cardinals, with 3 minutes to go in the game, approximately 30 seconds of pornographic material was shown, seen by an unknown number of Comcast customers in Tucson, Arizona who were watching the game in standard definition. Comcast has apologized (they used the word 'mortified') and is issuing a $10 credit to any customer who claims to have been impacted. Various news accounts suggest that the incident was a malicious act, but no one knows how it was done or by whom."

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