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Submission + - CNet Interviews PhiberOptik (

AceCaseOR writes: "CNet has an interview with Mark Abene, who is best known by his handle "PhiberOptik". Abene was prosecuted for (among other charges) computer trespassing in 1991, as part of the "Hacker Crackdown" from 1990 to 1991 by the US Secret Service that included, among other events, the 1990 Steve Jackson Games raid by the Secret Service, and was documented in Bruce Sterling's book The Hacker Crackdown."

Comment As someone who was following the case... (Score 1) 574

I'm going to give some quick information on the kind of material Mr. Black was selling (aside from DVDs for his crappy wrestling promotion). The DVD's contained material depicting simulated rape that was billed as actual rapes, participants who were advertised as being minors (with the DVDs and web pages not containing the legally mandated text that said that they confirmed that the participants were of legal age to take part in the video), along with your standard 2 Girls 1 Cup level scatological stuff.

Oh and apparently there were some problems with how they were storing it as well (they were storing it in the building they'd leased for their promotion - the former ECW Arena/Viking Hall, then called the New Alhambra Arena). Apparently there was something wrong with that as well (aside from possibly being a violation of their lease).

As it is, Rob Black is a giant inflamed asshole, and I have no sympathy for him at all.

The Courts

Madoff Sentenced To 150 Years 602

selven was one of several readers to send in the news that Bernie Madoff was sentenced to 150 years in prison. "Bernard Madoff's victims gasped and cheered when he was sentenced to 150 years in prison, but they walked away knowing little more about how he carried out the biggest robbery in Wall Street history. In one of the most dramatic courtroom conclusions to a corporate fraud case, the 71-year-old swindler was unemotional as he was berated by distraught investors during the 90-minute proceeding. Many former clients had hoped he would shed more light on his crime and explain why he victimized so many for so long. But he did not. Madoff called his crime 'an error of judgment' and his 'failure,' reiterating previous statements that he alone was responsible for the $65 billion investment fraud. His victims said they did not hear much new from Madoff in his five-minute statement. They also said they did not believe anything he said. As he handed down the maximum penalty allowed, US District Judge Denny Chin... [said], 'I simply do not get the sense that Mr. Madoff has done all that he could or told all that he knows.'"

Wikipedia Censored To Protect Captive Reporter 414

AI writes with a story from the NY Times about a 7-month-long effort, largely successful, to keep news of a Times reporter's kidnapping off of Wikipedia. The Christian Science Monitor, the reporter David Rohde's previous employer, takes a harder look at the issues of censorship and news blackout, linking to several blogs critical of Wikipedia's actions. Rohde escaped from a Taliban compound, along with his translator, on Saturday. "For seven months, The New York Times managed to keep out of the news the fact that one of its reporters, David Rohde, had been kidnapped by the Taliban. But that was pretty straightforward compared with keeping it off Wikipedia. ... A dozen times, user-editors posted word of the kidnapping on Wikipedia's page on Mr. Rohde, only to have it erased. Several times the page was frozen, preventing further editing — a convoluted game of cat-and-mouse that clearly angered the people who were trying to spread the information of the kidnapping... The sanitizing was a team effort, led by Jimmy Wales, co-founder of Wikipedia, along with Wikipedia administrators and people at The Times."

Comment Re:The wrong issue (Score 4, Interesting) 339

Also, this is, to a certain extent, a betrayal of the trust of current students at the high school, it sends a message that, even if you leave town, we know where your family lives, and if you do anything that, by the moral standards of that community is untoward (even if the rest of the world doesn't find it unethical - like saying you don't like your home town and you're glad you left), your family can and will be punished for it, outside the law, by the community.

Thus is the tyranny of small towns. I really wish the girl and her family had appealed, because I suspect if the case had reacheda court that wasn't as "tainted" by the region, she might have gotten an actual fair hearing.

The Almighty Buck

Submission + - Does The 'Hacker Ethic' Harm Today's Developers? (

snydeq writes: "Fatal Exception's Neil McAllister questions whether the 'hacker ethic' synonymous with computer programing in American society is enough for developers to succeed in today's economy. To be sure, self-taught 'cowboy coders' — the hallmark of today's programming generation in America — are technically proficient, McAllister writes, 'but their code is less likely to be maintainable in the long term, and they're less likely to conform to organizational development processes and coding standards.' And though HTC's Vineet Nayar's proclamation that American programmers are 'unemployable' is overblown, there may be wisdom in offering a new kind of computer engineering degree targeted toward the student who is more interested in succeeding in industry than exploring computing theory. 'American software development managers often complain that Indian programmers are too literal-minded,' McAllister writes, but perhaps Americans have swung the pendulum too far in the other direction. In other words, are we 'too in love with the hacker ideal of the 1980s to produce programmers who are truly prepared for today's real-life business environment?'"

Submission + - What if Napster Worked with the Music Industry (

furby076 writes: "Ars Technica has an interesting article about a what-if scenario. Something akin to an alternate universe straight from a comic book, the head of the UK musc trade group, BPI, discusses the mistakes the major labels made by not teaming up with Napster. According to the article this mind-set is not new and other RIAA executives are thinking about the subject and what could have happened if they embraced peer-to-peer a decade ago."
The Courts

Submission + - Supreme Court won't hear case on DVR storage (

drunken_boxer777 writes: The Supreme Court will not hear arguments as to whether Cablevision Systems Corp's remote-storage DVR violates copyright laws.

Hollywood studios and television networks lost their bid Monday for the Supreme Court to block the use of a new digital video recorder system that could make it cheaper and easier for viewers to record shows and watch them when they want, without commercials.

Here's to everything on-demand!


Submission + - AJAX vs. Desktop App

An anonymous reader writes: Our company is starting development on a small database-backed application and we're debating the use of AJAX-based forms/reports versus something more traditional like Python or Java. Our intended clientele is small to medium sized businesses. Is it more difficult to get prospective customers to buy into an AJAX-based platform versus a desktop application?
Social Networks

Of Catty Rants and Copyrights 339

Frequent Slashdot contributor Bennett Haselton writes "A newspaper copies a rant from a girl's MySpace page and reprints it as a 'Letter to the Editor' without her permission. Could the girl sue for copyright violation? This question provoked much more disagreement among legal experts than I expected." Read on for the details.

Submission + - Windows 7 Upgrade: Why Pay Twice For the Same OS? (

Ransak writes: "It would appear that despite the recession Microsoft is looking to get paid twice for Windows 7 from some business customers. FTA — "In another blow to customers, Microsoft says free Windows 7 upgrades--for companies that purchase new hardware between now and the Oct. 22 release date of the new OS--will be limited to 25 machines." As pointed out in the article, Gartner has weighed in on this."

Submission + - Nokia's netbooks - keep your hair on (

Anonymous Coward writes: "Nokia's recently-announced partnership with Intel has caused concern for quite a few key players in the industry: is Nokia planning to give up on S60, Maemo or anything else? Is this a game-changing move? Or is it just a matter of maximising marketshare and revenue? Read on for the full scoop! 13102008285 Nokias netbooks keep your hair on In order to understand what is going on here, we IMHO need to take a step back and look at how the majority of netbooks is being sold nowadays. The little critter pictured above (yours truly's MSI Wind U100) was purchased directly from the manufacturer: which is a way very few people go. It is furthermore used as a subnotebook (and is also referred to as such)...and generally does a formidable job."

Submission + - Sony Begins Shipping PCs With Green Dam In China (

Dotnaught writes: "Sony is now shipping computers in China with Green Dam installed, in advance of the Chinese government's July 1 deadline. But the company is disclaiming responsibility for any damage caused by the Web filtering software. Documents posted by Hong Kong-based media studies professor Rebecca MacKinnon also suggest that the Chinese government is considering similar filtering requirements for mobile phones."

Submission + - Aaron Seigo Puts Out Call to Save (

MaryBethP writes: "Aaron Seigo writes on his blog a call-to-arms for "What is supposed to be? Well, it's supposed to be a place for people working on F/OSS desktop projects to come together and collaborate on shared designs and shared software. It's been successful in bringing together drag and drop, window manager hints, application menus, icon themes, bookmarks, D-Bus and much more. This is valuable work and is, or at least should, be vital to the F/OSS desktop platform.

It has seen better days, however. Currently it suffers from two major illnesses: administritus and anarchiosis."

Full blog here:"

The Internet

Submission + - Sniffing browser history for art

holdenkarau writes: "You may remember previous slashdot discussions on browser history sniffing, but there is a new kid in town doing something a bit different. uses similar browser history sniffing to determine what websites you visit and creates a collage of them. Before you get worried, it uses a list of "web2.0" sites, so the collage will (probably) be appropriate (unless you don't want your colleagues knowing about your slashdot habbits). An interesting application of potentially scary technology. For those wanting to skip the warning screen and go straight to the browser sniffing this should do the trick."

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