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Businesses

Chevron Gives Residents Near Fracking Explosion Free Pizza 207

Lasrick writes "Chevron hopes that free soda and pizza can extinguish community anger over a fracking well fire in Dunkard Township, Pennsylvania. From the story: 'The flames that billowed out of the Marcellus Shale natural gas well were so hot they caused a nearby propane truck to explode, and first responders were forced to retreat to avoid injury. The fire burned for four days, and Chevron currently has tanks of water standing by in case it reignites. Of the twenty contractors on the well site, one is still missing, and is presumed dead.' The company gave those who live nearby a certificate for a free pizza and some soda."
Games

Ask Slashdot: What Games Are You Playing? 669

An anonymous reader writes "We haven't had this discussion in a while: what games are Slashdotters playing these days? We've recently seen the latest generation of consoles arrive on the scene. Almost exactly a year ago, Valve brought Steam to Linux, and they've been pushing for stronger Linux adoption among game publishers ever since. Mobile gaming continues to rise (for better or worse), MMOs are still sprouting like weeds, and Kickstarted indie games are becoming commonplace. For those of you who play games, what ones have struck your fancy recently? What older games do you keep coming back to? What upcoming releases are you looking forward to?"
EU

ICANN's Cozy Relationship With the US Must End, Says EU 193

alphadogg writes "The exclusive relationship of ICANN with the U.S. must end, said the European Union's digital agenda chief on Wednesday. California-based ICANN is responsible for the assignment of top-level domains and has a long-standing operating agreement with the U.S. However, following the revelations by Edward Snowden of widespread surveillance of the Internet by the National Security Agency, many countries have questioned the arrangement. The historical relationship, noted in ICANN's Affirmation of Commitments, is outdated and the governance of the Internet must become more global, said the E.U. Digital Agenda Commissioner Neelie Kroes. Kroes was presenting the European Commission's new policy on Internet governance, which rejects any United Nations or governmental takeover of Internet governance and calls for a move to globalize ICANN."
GUI

Ask Slashdot: Are Linux Desktop Users More Pragmatic Now Or Is It Inertia? 503

David W. White writes "Years ago ago those of us who used any *nix desktop ('every morning when you wake up, the house is a little different') were seen as willing to embrace change and spend hours tinkering and configuring until we got new desktop versions to work the way we wanted, while there was an opposite perception of desktop users over in the Mac world ('it just works') and the Windows world ('it's a familiar interface'). However, a recent article in Datamation concludes that 'for better or worse, [Linux desktop users] know what they want — a classic desktop — and the figures consistently show that is what they are choosing in far greater numbers than GNOME, KDE, or any other single graphical interface.' Has the profile of the Linux desktop user changed to a more pragmatic one? Or is it just the psychology of user inertia at work, when one considers the revolt against changes in the KDE, GNOME, UNITY and Windows 8 interfaces in recent times?"

Comment Re:The real news (Score 2) 96

I actually got a text message the other day (purporting to be Yahoo - turns out it was them) saying that unusual activity had been seen on my account and they had disabled it until I went to the site on a PC. (I hardly ever use it - so this was a surprise - it is just a catch all for crap sites I may have to sign up for to keep them out of my "real" email). Anyway, I have two factor auth turned on (for Google, MS, and Yahoo) so I was surprised to see this. I guess they used the right password, but couldn't pass the two factor test. Just signing on to my account sent me to a special page saying there was unusual activity and having me input my password and a new password (once only; no "type it twice" thing). The new password had to meet some criteria and their regex or whatever they were using is broken beyond belief. It says it must be between 8 and 32 characters, have upper and lower case, and numbers. However, my old password met most of this already and was 8 chars (it was only missing the upper case character). Adding a "Y" to the end did not pass - because apparently that is not an upper case character. Neither is any other upper case character. It looks like they need all of the character types in the first 8 positions in order to accept it. Very poor coding and design on that page. I finally just had KeePass generate a random PW for me and used that.

I think this is a "score one for two factor" moment - but the poor implementation of the "fix" on Yahoo's part was a turn off.
Science

Amherst Researchers Create Magnetic Monopoles 156

An anonymous reader writes "Nearly 85 years after pioneering theoretical physicist Paul Dirac predicted the possibility of their existence, an international collaboration led by Amherst College Physics Professor David S. Hall '91 and Aalto University (Finland) Academy Research Fellow Mikko Möttönen has created, identified and photographed synthetic magnetic monopoles in Hall's laboratory on the Amherst campus. The groundbreaking accomplishment paves the way for the detection of the particles in nature, which would be a revolutionary development comparable to the discovery of the electron." That's quite a step beyond detecting monopoles; the Nature abstract is online, but the full paper is paywalled.
Desktops (Apple)

Apple Macintosh Turns 30 154

snydeq writes "30 years ago today, Apple debuted the Macintosh. Here are some reviews of the early Mac models, including the Macintosh ('will be compared to other machines not only in terms of its features but also in the light of the lavish claims and promises made by Apple co-founder Steven Jobs'), the Mac SE ('contains some radical changes, including room for a second internal drive and even a fan'), the Mac IIx ('a chorus of yawns'), and the Mac Portable ('you may develop a bad case of the wannas for this lovable [16-lb.] luggable'). Plus insights on the Macintosh II's prospects from Bill Gates: 'If you look at a product like Mac Word III on that full-page display, it's pretty awesome. ... But the corporate buyer is never going to be a strong point for Apple.'" iFixit got their hands on a Mac 128K and did a teardown, evaluating the old hardware for repairability. What will the Mac look like in another 30 years?
Music

Kim Dotcom Just Launched His New Music Service With His Own Album 69

Daniel_Stuckey writes "Dotcom today released his debut album Good Times, which consists of 17 pretty terrible EDM tracks produced by the Mega mogul himself. According to a press release, 'The music celebrates Kim's ever-present philosophy of inspiring people to feel good, have fun and live life to the fullest. Kim was inspired by the Trance and Dance tracks he listened to during his high-speed driving times on the German Autobahn.' It's anything but subtle, as you might guess from an album advertised on the back of a 100-strong fleet of buses. In an interview with Wired at the end of the year Dotcom admitted he sounded 'like crap, obviously,' but added, 'Fortunately there's a thing called Auto-Tune so they make it sound OK.'"

Comment Re:tl;dr Phonebook? (Score 2, Interesting) 244

Spammers didn't typically scan the phone book and use automated bots to email all the people in it. So although phone books were "databases" they weren't easily accessible with some scripting.

The OP may believe that the Google+ "SPAMagedon" isn't coming - however - I have noticed that, over the last week, I have been added to the "circles" of well over one hundred "accounts". When I click on these, most of them are marketing accounts or sock puppets. Some of the names are clearly marketing: "Angry Birds Lösung 3 Stars Games.J500", "Anime TV and Title Loans Chicago", "Fred's Best Title Loans", etc. Others, when you go look at them, are pretty clearly similar. 10 people have them in circles but they have 5,000+ circled. The posts (if there are any) are just advertisements. Does anybody really think that this was random? I am pretty sure these folks are getting ready to spam using G+. Sure, they will eventually get shut down. But I'd advise people to go change the setting in GMail that allows these folks to send you mail without knowing your gmail account.

Comment Re:My password is printed on the side of my router (Score 1) 341

I have two access points as well. House is a two-story, 2,590 square feet. Cable access is at one end of the house and the main router is there as well. At the far end of the house, the signal has to go through several walls, a washer and dryer, and a staircase to get to the Chromecast plugged in behind the TV against the outer wall. It is about 1 bar and I am not about to try to use it like that as it will likely stutter and degrade. So I pulled wire to that end of the house and there is a second router (in simple bridge mode) there. As a bonus, I now have coverage in the upstairs master bedroom / bathroom where there was basically no signal before. BTW, this isn't a single router / brand issue. I have used about 7 or 8 different routers - all sorts of brands from Linksys, Netgear, Buffalo, etc. and they all had the same issue getting to the other end of the house.

Comment Re:How about that rented storage? (Score 1) 239

Interesting point about the "reasonable person". I don't know any of them though. Most people I personally know (aside from my kids, who think like I do) think the meta data collection is OK. They equate it with survey data that is aggregated and anonymous - even though the meta data includes non-anonymous stuff like your phone number. I don't consider them reasonable, but they seem to be in the majority. Generally, if put to a vote, the majority - assuming they aren't apathetic and don't vote - will win and will be considered the reasonable ones. Maybe I am unreasonable? But I sure don't like the NSA collecting all of this info...
Microsoft

PC Makers Plan Rebellion Against Microsoft At CES 564

Velcroman1 writes "Fearing rapidly plummeting sales of traditional laptops and desktop computers — which fell by another 10 percent or so in 2013 — manufacturers are planning a revolt against Microsoft and the Windows operating system, analysts say. At the 2014 CES in Las Vegas, multiple computer makers will unveil systems that simultaneously run two different operating systems, both Windows and the Android OS that powers many of the world's tablets and smartphones, two different analysts said recently. The new devices will be called 'PC Plus' machines, explained analyst Tim Bajarin. 'A PC Plus machine will run Windows 8.1 but will also run Android apps as well,' Bajarin wrote. Another analyst put the threat to Windows bluntly: 'This should scare the heck out of Microsoft.'"
Censorship

Battlefield 4 Banned In China 380

hypnosec writes "The Chinese government has officially banned Battlefield 4, stating that Electronic Arts has developed a game that not only threatens national security of the country, but is also a form of cultural invasion. The country's Ministry of Culture has issued a notice banning all material retailed to the game in any form, including the game itself, related downloads, demos, patches and even news reports. According to PCGames.com.cn [Chinese language], Battlefield 4 has been characterized as illegal game on the grounds that the game endangers national security and cultural aggression."

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