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User Journal

Journal Journal: Centralized Systems = Large Problems

Annalee Newitz questions whether it's a good idea to store your life on someone else's servers: Data crash of 2027: "... this situation is worse than potentially being data-raped by some feds trolling for terrorists. When we store all our personal, financial, and social information on other people's computers, we risk losing everything for reasons even s

Music

iTunes Staffers Becomes Music's New Gatekeepers 79

WSJdpatton writes to mention The Wall Street Journal has a look at how Apple is shaking up the world of music retailing. "Apple -- now one of the largest sellers of music in the U.S. -- offers home-page placement in exchange for things such as exclusive access to new songs, special discount pricing or additional material such as interviews with stars. Most other big retailers, digital and physical, also seek exclusive offerings, but Apple is especially aggressive and has outsize clout when it comes to the slightly out-of-mainstream music it often emphasizes."
Google

Submission + - Orkut: You email address can be hacked easily

vikrantsharma1 writes: "Orkut has been in the midst of privacy and security concerns since its launch. There have been many ways through which you can get to know the email address of any person on Orkut even when it is not displayed in the public profile. Although, Google keeps on fixing bugs as and when they are highlighted; however, there seems to be a long way before they can make Orkut a secure social network.

One of the method to know the email address which I came across has been listed below which you can try yourself.

Steps:
1. Open the profile of the person whose email address you wish to know. It can be anyone in the Orkut network.
2. Click on "Ignore User"
3. Open GTalk and sign in with your ID
4. Click on Settings and select "Blocked"
5. You will find the email address of the person whom you blocked on Orkut.

You can see the sceenshots of the same at http://vikrantweb.blogspot.com/2007/03/orkut-your- email-address-can-be-hacked.html"
Announcements

Submission + - International Public Toilets Database

William S. writes: "Press Release: 10 March 2007

A publicly accessible database has been set up at www.publictoilets.org . You can search for public toilets in 19 countries and find out information that includes the address and detailed information about the facility as well as geographic coordinates. A user can submit comments and enter new locations. There is a wiki, forum and mailing list linked from the main page of the database with information related to public toilets. It is hoped that public exposure to this resource will add to it's content and help expand coverage.

For more information contact:
wstan@publictoilets.org

or go to:

www.publictoilets.org"
Security

Submission + - BBC reports Skynet going live

rowleyrw writes: The BBC are reporting "The British military is set to take one of its most significant steps into the digital age with the launch of the first Skynet 5 satellite. The spacecraft will deliver secure, high-bandwidth communications for UK and "friendly" forces across the globe." It's not yet the Skynet of Terminator, but how long before it becomes self aware :-)
Wii

Submission + - Features the Wii Opera Browser is Screaming for

frenchy64 writes: "With the next release of the Wii Opera Browser just around the corner, there is just so much potential to fulfil it's overwhelming. Okay, we know it needs Tabs, updated Flash and all that jazz, but what else could be included? The Wii Gamers have an editorial suggesting features such as DS Connectivity for an easy wireless Keyboard, Wiimote Gestures, and Browse-While-Playing capabilities (to name a few)!"
United States

Submission + - FBI abused Patriot act powers

devnulljapan writes: Well, we all knew this, but here's the scoop from the Guardian and the BBC and CNN even Faux News is covering it, albeit with a spin that it's all Robert Mueller's fault:
The FBI abused its powers under the PATRIOT act to obtain information about US citizens, according to a justice department report published yesterday. The Justice department's inspector-general, Glenn Fine, said the FBI had been illegally using its powers in some cases, was under-reporting the frequency with which it forced firms to hand over customer information, and obtained phone records other than for emergencies.
Why is this not front page news in the US? If only the acronym was ANNA-NICOLE-SMITH...
Programming

Why Is "Design by Contract" Not More Popular? 178

Coryoth writes "Design by Contract, writing pre- and post-conditions on functions, seemed like straightforward common sense to me. Such conditions, in the form of executable code, not only provide more exacting API documentation, but also provide a test harness. Having easy to write unit tests, that are automatically integrated into the inheritance hierarchy in OO languages, 'just made sense'. However, despite being available (to varying degrees of completeness) for many languages other than Eiffel, including Java, C++, Perl, Python, Ruby, Ada, and even Haskell and Ocaml, the concept has never gained significant traction, particularly in comparison to unit testing frameworks (which DbC complements nicely), and hype like 'Extreme Programming'. So why did Design by Contract fail to take off?"
Linux Business

Samba Success in the Enterprise? 149

gunnk asks: "We've deployed a Samba server here to replace some aging Novell Netware boxes. It works great: fast, secure, stable. However, we have one VIP that feels that Samba is 'amateur' software and that we should be buying Windows servers. I've been searching with little success for large Samba deployments in Enterprise environments. Anyone out there care to share stories of places that are happily running large Samba installations for their file servers? Or not so happy, for that matter — better to be informed!"
Businesses

Submission + - Where are the science shortages?

An anonymous reader writes: With Bill Gates talking about the shortages in people to fill positions in science and technology, I was wondering where the shortages really are in science? Are there really any science positions out there in high demand? It seems like a lot of the visa worker issues revolve around IT, but is there an impact in science or engineering?
Businesses

Submission + - Computer job without IT or CS degree?

An anonymous reader writes: What's the best way to get a job in IT or programming without an IT or CS degree? I have a science degree with very light ancillary experience doing some basic IT support and programming. From an employer's perspective what's the best way to substitute for a lack of a IT/CS degree or real job experience — non-degree community college courses, extra CS college courses, certificates, or what? Do any of the MS software development certificates carry any weight at all or even help you get a foot in the door?

How does one even go about finding an entry level job? All the job ads seem to be for experienced people.
Wireless Networking

Submission + - Adding Wireless to an Existing Network

illeism writes: Hey /. — I know some of you out there are using wireless for your businesses. Well, I've been tasked with adding wireless access to our existing network. My question to you is: Who did you pick for your wireless and why? Things I'm concerned about include, security, ease of management, having an "inside" and "outside" way to connect so that vendors can come in and get an internet connection without having to put them in the network but still keep it locked down enough to stop the next door neighbor from just jumping on. This is going to be a relatively small deployment, so I don't need a enterprise sized solution. I'm sure there are other things that I should be considering, so, I ask /., what do you think?
Operating Systems

Submission + - Linux Kernel

Tokimasa writes: "Are there any good tutorials on how to use the Linux kernel to build an OS? I would really like to learn more about operating system design and implementation, and that seems like a fairly straightforward way to go about it."
Data Storage

Building an ODF Intranet Portal? 19

jeevesbond writes "I have been doing some feasibility work on creating a FLOSS Intranet Portal for ODF documents; the first task is to find existing projects that already provide some of the required functionality. The requirements are: version control — including diff and merge capabilities for ODF; integration with OpenOffice for check-in/out as a starting point; a Web-based CMS for group sharing of files (preferably one that can be extended to perform other tasks); and network authentication for the CMS (so users don't have to login twice). The eventual aim is to be able to bundle all this up in some way: 'apt-get odf-portal', for instance. Which FLOSS tools would you use for this job? How would you handle diffs and merges for ODF documents?"
Censorship

In France, Only Journalists Can Film Violence 531

BostonBTS sends word that the French Constitutional Council has just made it illegal to film violence unless you are a professional journalist (or to distribute a video containing violence). The law was approved exactly 16 years after amateur videographer George Holliday filmed Los Angeles police officers beating Rodney King. The Council was tidying up a body of law about offenses against the public order, and wanted to ban "happy slapping." A charitable reading would be that the lawmakers stumbled into unintended consequences. Not according to Pascal Cohet, a spokesman for French online civil liberties group Odebi: "The broad drafting of the law so as to criminalize the activities of citizen journalists unrelated to the perpetrators of violent acts is no accident, but rather a deliberate decision by the authorities, said [Cohet]. He is concerned that the law, and others still being debated, will lead to the creation of a parallel judicial system controlling the publication of information on the Internet."

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