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Censorship

Submission + - U.S. pressured Spain to approve the Sinde law (elpais.com)

An anonymous reader writes: We discussed recently the Spanish Website Blocking Law. It seems that such legislation was enacted in Spain in spite of the opposition of the general population, likely to comply with the wishes of the United States (original in Spanish). It seems that Washington threatened to take measures against Spain, like putting it back in their piracy black list.

Comment Re:More slashcrap (Score 4, Insightful) 65

You may be Spanish, but don't seem to know shit about what you are talking about. There is no much fearmongering in the linked articles. The point of the law is precisely to bypass the due process that you claim that exists in Spain.

Thanks to this law, any copyright holder can ask to have a website closed without having to prove before a judge that there is an actual copyright infringement. There is a judge involved somehow, but he does not get to judge the case before closing the site (as was the case until now). This law opens the gates for American style corporate censorship (like when US Immigration and Customs Enforcement decides that a web site should have its DNS stolen because Warner Bros or Universal say that it hosts "illegal" content).

And the change in government has very little to do with this law. Both PP and PSOE agree with it. Both voted for it.

Comment Re:What did you expect? (Score 5, Insightful) 427

Yay for living in Europe, where the spirit of the law still counts for something.

I am European, but I am sick of reading claims like this one in Slashdot and elsewere. It makes no sense to pretend that we are better than the Americans, or that our laws are more fair or that our politicians are better. In most areas we are almost as bad as the states (and copyright is one of them), while in other areas we are even worse.

And we both (Americans and Europeans) are seeing our laws changing continuously for the worse, and we will end up with a very similar set of laws in the end: those that are good for the people in power (i.e.: the corporations).

You think "the spirit of the law" counts for something in Europe? Do you trust those currently in power in your country to uphold it? Do you think the European Comission cares about "the spirit" of anything?

Comment Re:Why Are We Deferring to an Economic Organizatio (Score 1) 715

Thousands of experts would have assured you that pholgiston and the ether existed. The consensus view in medicine has been wrong lots of times: routine tonsilectomy, eggs and other foods as contributing to high cholesterol, the effects of tobacco and alcohol [...]

And how do you know all those things were wrong? Guess what, the consensus told you. So your best strategy is to always follow the consensus, unless you want to invest a decade or so becoming an expert yourself. If you want someone with an immutable and infallible truth, ask a priest or an astrologist.

Comment Re:Oh, the rebranding is hell. (Score 2, Interesting) 289

If xenserver had better resource management then I think vmware would be on its way out of my lab.

Actually, take a look at the built-in linux KVM which is getting seriously competitive in some environments. If combined with an HA-NAS solution and some custom scripts it can get quite useful in large scale deployments (as long as you do not expect pretty GUI management tools). The only serious technical weakness versus VmWare ESX is at this point lack of VMotion (which is a bit of a solution looking for a problem in many real-life scenarios anyway, given that server failures where the VM still keeps running sufficiently to be spirited away alive to another host are as about as numerous as hen's teeth).

So if you are not into some performance-fiendish-disk-io-and-cpu situations (at which point you shouldn't be really virtualizing these porkers anyway) then KVM + HA-NAS might be the trick. KVM is also capable of reading vmdk files so you can cheat using the VMWare Converter just like you would with ESX hosts, just make sure not to install VMWare tools during conversion...

Search the net, people are doing wacky things with KVM already and soon the commercial guys will be fighting an uphill battle ... which is all for the better, IMHO.

Open Source

Linux Kernel 2.6.32 Released 195

diegocg writes "Linus Torvalds has officially released the version 2.6.32 of the Linux kernel. New features include virtualization memory de-duplication, a rewrite of the writeback code faster and more scalable, many important Btrfs improvements and speedups, ATI R600/R700 3D and KMS support and other graphic improvements, a CFQ low latency mode, tracing improvements including a 'perf timechart' tool that tries to be a better bootchart, soft limits in the memory controller, support for the S+Core architecture, support for Intel Moorestown and its new firmware interface, run-time power management support, and many other improvements and new drivers. See the full changelog for more details."
Idle

Canadian Blood Services Promotes Pseudoscience 219

trianglecat writes "The not-for-profit agency Canadian Blood Services has a section of their website based on the Japanese cultural belief of ketsueki-gata, which claims that a person's blood group determines or predicts their personality type. Disappointing for a self-proclaimed 'science-based' organization. The Ottawa Skeptics, based in the nation's capital, appear to be taking some action."
Science

Programmable Quantum Computer Created 132

An anonymous reader writes "A team at NIST (the National Institute of Standards and Technology) used berylium ions, lasers and electrodes to develop a quantum system that performed 160 randomly chosen routines. Other quantum systems to date have only been able to perform single, prescribed tasks. Other researchers say the system could be scaled up. 'The researchers ran each program 900 times. On average, the quantum computer operated accurately 79 percent of the time, the team reported in their paper.'"

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