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Transportation

Hybrids Safer In Crashes — Except For Pedestrians 392

Hugh Pickens writes writes "Hybrid vehicles are safer than their conventional counterparts when it comes to shielding their occupants from injuries in crashes with the odds of being injured in a crash 25 percent lower for people in hybrids than people traveling in comparable non-hybrid vehicles. "Weight is a big factor," says Matt Moore, of the Highway Loss Data Institute. 'Hybrids on average are 10 percent heavier than their standard counterparts. This extra mass gives them an advantage in crashes that their conventional twins don't have.' The study's findings are good news for green-minded drivers who are also looking for safety in their cars, but it's worth noting that hybrid vehicles are much quieter than gas-powered cars, posing a risk to pedestrians. "When hybrids operate in electric-only mode, pedestrians can't hear them approaching," says Moore. Earlier this year, Congress gave the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration three years to come up with a requirement for equipping hybrids and electric models with sounds to alert unsuspecting pedestrians."
Businesses

UBS: Our Risk Systems Did Detect $2bn Rogue Trader 151

A few weeks ago, UBS employee Kweku Adoboli (universally described as a "rogue trader") ran up a $2 billion loss for his employer; many readers wondered how it is the systems which allow trades to happen at all aren't better tuned to catch such massive cash flows without triggering alerts. Now, reader DMandPenfold submits a report from Computerworld UK in which the bank claims that such triggers were in place — they were simply not acted on. From the article: "UBS has insisted its IT systems did detect unusual and unauthorised trading activity, Interim chief executive Sergio Ermotti, who is running the company following Oswald Grubel's resignation last month, sent a memo to employees saying the bank is aware that its systems did detect the rogue activity. In the memo, Ermotti wrote: 'Our internal investigation indicates that risk and operational systems did detect unauthorised or unexplained activity but this was not sufficiently investigated nor was appropriate action taken to ensure existing controls were enforced.'"
Microsoft

Microsoft Announces Web-Based Office365 210

suraj.sun writes "Aiming to bolster its hosted software for businesses, Microsoft announced today that it is adding Web-based versions of Office to its collection of hosted software for business, Office365. It will also offer traditional Office as a subscription-based service. Microsoft is pricing the service as low as $6 per user per month, though that version includes only the Web-based versions of Office."
AT&T

AT&T To Allow Xbox 360 As U-verse Set-Top Box 62

suraj.sun sends this quote from Engadget about U-verse subscribers soon gaining the ability to use an Xbox 360 as a set-top box: "A so-called Wired Release will roll out to AT&T U-verse customers next Sunday, and it'll bring the long awaited feature with it (though you'll have to wait until November 7th for that particular aspect). This means an AT&T U-verse customer's Xbox 360 will have a Dashboard app, and when launched, it'll let it function exactly like any other U-verse set-top. The only major catch is that it can't be the only set-top — you'll need at least one DVR at another TV in the house to enjoy one of the four HD streams that could be funneled into your home."
Government

Unique ID In India Causes 'Fear of the Beast' 725

bhagwad writes "India's attempts to tag everyone with an ID number has run into a roadblock is some Christian villages. Apparently the villagers fear they will be associated with the devil since according to the Bible, everyone having the 'mark of the beast' will go to hell. These people are not afraid of punishment. They relish this opportunity to prove their faith because the Bible also proclaims that they will be persecuted."
Image

Plagiarism Inc. 236

Here's an interesting article on the life and times of 24-year-old Jordan Kavoosi, who has made a business of plagiarism. His Essay Writing Company employs writers from across the country, and will deliver a paper on any subject for $23 per page. In addition, his company will get it done in 48 hours, and he guarantees at least a B grade or your money back. From the article: "'Sure it's unethical, but it's just a business,' Kavoosi explains. 'I mean, what about strip clubs or porn shops? Those are unethical, and city-approved.'"
PHP

SolarPHP 1.0 Released 125

HvitRavn writes "SolarPHP 1.0 stable was released by Paul M. Jones today. SolarPHP is an application framework and library, and is a serious contender alongside Zend Framework, Symphony, and similar frameworks. SolarPHP has in the recent years been the cause of heated debate in the PHP community due to provocative benchmark results posted on Paul M. Jones' blog."

Comment Patent would not cover sudo (Score 1) 657

This doesn't sound like it would cover sudo to me, or even a GUI-wrapper for sudo. While I am not a patent attorney, I have been hacking on sudo for the past 15+ years.

My reading of the patent indicates that it is geared towards GUI-based environments where the user may need to perform some action (such as setting the clock in a control panel) that requires increased privileges. The actual "invention" appears to be that the user is able to perform an action as a different user without having to type in the name of that other user when authenticating. One example given in that patent is the ability to click on a name in a list of privileged users as opposed to having to type in a user name.

Sudo simply doesn't work this way. When a command is run via sudo the user is actively running the command as a different user. What is described in the patent is a mechanism whereby an application or the operating system detects that an action needs to be run with increased privileges and automatically prompts the user with a list of potential users that have the appropriate privilege level to perform the task.

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