Follow Slashdot blog updates by subscribing to our blog RSS feed


Forgot your password?

Comment Re:I had an idea like this once (Score 1) 221

You realize that because you 'had the idea' before Google launched the actual implentation you now, per Slashdot convention, can claim that Google has not done anything new or novel.

Actually, yes. If google was about to patent the idea of the sidewiki alone it would be an excellent example not of prior art, but how trivial the idea itself is, and why the patent system needs to be reworked.

Comment Re:Whats on the laptop, son? (Score 1) 767

"Its a gig of encrypted kiddie pr0n."

Guard: Oh come on, be serious, if you aren't going to do this baggage check stuff properly don't do it at all. Now shove off!

Outcome: Guard doesn't believe such amazingly incriminating answer. Thinks you are obnoxious. Tells you to keep going.

I know you wrote that in jest but anyway, never EVER say something like that to a law enforcement officer. First he WILL arrest you, no matter how far in the cheek your tongue was, second he WILL get a search warrant for your house just to find anything to make a case. Then you will be forced to decrypt the container because if you don't all that is needed in court to convict you is the testimony of the officer.

Comment Re:First collision (Score 2, Insightful) 456

No, that's an electrostatic force, not electromagnetic, and the force of matter interacting with other matter is not only comprised of that force alone.

And the difference between electrostatic and electromagnetic forces would be what? There is no reason to keep them apart, it's the same phenomenon. And what would that other force be that matter is interacting with outside of atoms, other than gravity?

Making it act over more than a few millimeters against a non-charged object (such as random space junk) is, at this point, not possible.

That is correct of course, as of now, but the parent poster made it look like it would be fundamentally impossible.

Comment Re:First collision (Score 3, Insightful) 456

Well, there will have to be some major breakthroughs in physics for that to happen. Electromagnetics won't help much, because a lot of that junk is non-ferrous.

If I punch you, the force of the blow will be transfered from my fist to your body by nothing else than electromagnetism. You don't need to be ferromagnetic for this to work. The outer electrons of the outer atoms of your body will be repelled by the outer electrons of the outer atoms of my fist.

Outside of atoms, there are no forces other than gravity and electromagnetism.


Submission + - A timetable for nuclear fusion

IAmTheRealMike writes: This article offers an in depth but readable review of the current state of fusion research, along with a timetable for the future, a description of what still needs to be figured out and a fascinating look at what it'd take to scale up to worldwide commercial generation levels. Executive summary, by 2100 if all goes according to plan fusion might be able to generate 30% of Europes present day demand. The delay is largely due to tightly limited tritium supplies. Whilst a sustainable fusion reactor will produce tritium, it would do so only in small amounts so a reactor would take 2-3 years to produce enough tritium to "give birth" and start another one. It looks like even with the most optimistic assumptions, by the time Tokamak based fusion can meaningfully contribute we will likely be deep in the midsts of an energy crisis.

Submission + - UK Govt plans centralised citizen database

axel_pressbutton writes: The uk govt is pushing forward on indroducing a national id card and has been selling the idea on the back of promising reduction in fraud, protection from terrorists. Unfortunately it will cost a fortune and wont work too well.
Some bright spark has worked out that if you glue together all the databases held by the Health service, police, local authorities, tax office and any other govt database it might work. So it was announced on the news this morning that Tony Blair will start pushing the project on Monday.
You really could make things better making good use of information.
Things could also be a lot worse.
Ever since Walmart / Tesco successfully introduced loyalty cards I thought this move was inevitable.
My best example of good use is in providing benefits to pensioners. In the UK pension benefits are means tested, the trouble is the take-up rate is low, due to the need to fill in a 45 page application form. With an integrated database you would get the benefit without filling in the form.
What good / bad uses can you think of?

Submission + - New Spin on "Big Brother" database for UK

POPE Mad Mitch writes: The BBC is reporting that in a move that both the opposition party and the Information Commission have condemned as another step towards a "Big Brother" society, Tony Blair is on monday going to unveil planas to build a single database to pull together and share every piece of personal data from all government departments, the claimed justification for which is to improve public services. Sharing information in this way is currently prohibited by the "over zealous" data protection legislation. An attempt to build a similar database was a key part of the, now severely delayed, ID card scheme.
Data Storage

Submission + - Storing unused hard drives?

An anonymous reader writes: Over the years, I've acquired several hard drives, many of which are in use in various machines, but some of them don't have a home. I'd like to keep these around for later use, but I don't seem to have a place to put them or know how to store them. When new ones come in the mail, they have protective shells. Should I look for a place to buy some of these, or is there a better way to do this?

Slashdot Top Deals

You do not have mail.