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Windows

Submission + - 5 sins of Vista

sproketboy writes: Interesting article discussing 5 major usibility flaws in Vista that weren't there before. Is Windows getting worse — not better over time?
HP

Submission + - Pretexting Now Illegal

Investigative Lead writes: "Pretexting, better known as lying, is now illegal thanks to a law signed by President Bush last week. While the new law doesn't address many of the other times private investigators may lie in order to gather private information, it at least stops them from gathering telephone records under false pretenses. The bill itself was introduced late last year, but only finally got the necessary support after the HP spying scandal broke, where they used PIs on their own board members in order to identify press leaks. Anyone trying some of those techniques now could end up with a maximum of 10 years in prison."
Portables

Submission + - Keep your laptop from hurting you

NewsCloud writes: "If you're like me, you spend a lot of time working on your laptop in chaotic ergonomic environs. I've made a list of five simple tips that helped me improve my laptop ergonomics to overcome some recent neck pain and headaches. The arrival of widescreen portables with shorter displays, like the MacBook, are just making these problems worse for people. As beautiful and compact as these devices are, it would be nice to see more industry attention to this issue (my post includes a few suggestions). Slashdot has touched on ergonomics before as well: OSHA Getting Tougher About Ergonomics , Input Solutions for Repetitive Stress Victims? , Making Modifications to Your Computer Workspace? and How Effective are Ergonomic Keyboards? ."
The Internet

Submission + - Google, Microsoft Escalate Data Center Battle

miller60 writes: "The race by Microsoft and Google to build next-generation data centers is intensifying. On Thursday Microsoft announced a $550 million San Antonio project, only to have Google confirm plans for a $600 million site in North Carolina. It appears Google may just be getting started, as it is apparently planning two more enormous data centers in South Carolina, which may cost another $950 million. These "Death Star" data centers are emerging as a key assets in the competitive struggle between Microsoft and Google, which have both scaled up their spending (as previously discussed on Slashdot). Some pundits, like PBS' Robert X. Cringley, say the scope and cost of these projects reflect the immense scale of Google's ambitions."
AMD/OSTG

Vendor AMD begins to ship ATI Radeon Uber Edition bundle

AMD has 'limited release', 'uber' edition of their ATI Radeon bundle - X1950. It's comprised of overclocked graphics cards shipped in a lockable James Bond-style attaché case. "The "limited release" bundle comprises two X1950 XTX cards, and ATI "wide-area" mousemat and sticker, a "VIP customer care card", and a number certificate with former ATI CEO Dave Orton's signature printed on it. Apparently, he sig

Feed Sundance: Power to the People (wired.com)

Documentary Chicago 10 examines the political shift in America's youth after the 1968 Democratic National Convention. The director brilliantly combines archival footage and animation to bring the seminal events to life. In Table of Malcontents.


Spam

Submission + - Spam is back, and worse than ever.

Ant writes: "The Red Tape Chronicles reports that just last December (2006), the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) published an optimistic state-of-spam report. It cites research indicating spam had leveled off or even dropped during the previous year. It now appears spammers had simply gone back to the drawing board. There's more spam now than ever before. In fact, there's twice as much spam now as opposed to this time last year. And the messages themselves are causing more trouble. About half of all spam sent now is "image spam," containing server-clogging pictures that are up to 10 times the size of traditional text spam. And most image spam is stock-related, pump-and-dump scams which can harm investors who don't even use e-mail. About one-third of all spam is stock spam now. Seen on Digg."
Programming

Submission + - 53 CSS-Techniques You Couldn't Live Without

vitaly.friedman writes: "Cascading Style Sheets offer many advantages you don't have in table-layouts — i.e. a strict separation between layout, or design of the page, and the information, presented on the page. Over the last few years web-developers have developed many useful techniques, which can save you a lot of time — of course, if you are able to find them in time. This article lists 53 essential css-techniques, which will make your life easier. "Thanks to all developers who contributed to accessible and usable css-based design over the last few years. We really appreciate it.""
Software

Submission + - Language Tools

creolophus writes: I am a college student and I am looking for language tools which will help me with my writing, by giving me useful feedback (on my grammar, usage, etc). I will be writing mostly English prose with very little technical content.

So far, I have been using only Microsoft Word's spelling and grammar checkers, and they don't provide any feedback.

Do you know (or) have you been using any such tools?
Announcements

Submission + - Quantum Computer Demo in February

fwburton writes: D-Wave Systems has announced has announced that they will be demoing a 16-qubit adiabatic quantum computer in February. Their roadmap calls for a 1000-qubit by the end of 2008.

D-Wave Systems is planning to provide free access to one of their quantum computers in Q2/2007 for people who want to develop or port applications to the system.
Privacy

Submission + - Wired: "Computer Privacy in Distress"

davidwr writes: Wired has an interesting editorial on laptop searches and seizures. It raises some interesting issues including: Employee rights against police searches in the workplace, routine vs. non-routine searches at ports of entry, the implications of never deleting files, police use of unrelated data found in a database search; using a single target to get a warrant to seize all information on a computer used by the many "real" targets of law enforcement, and more.
The article ends saying, "Of course, there's a chance that the courts will not recognize the different scope of privacy interests at stake in computer searches, or will not be adept at crafting a rule that gives enough leeway and guidance to law enforcement, while also protecting privacy. At that point, the Constitution may fail us, and we will have to turn to Congress to create rules that are better adapted for the information age."
Censorship

Submission + - The Growing Problem of Censorship in India

eldavojohn writes: "While it may be easy to find censorship in North Korea and China these days, India's government is traveling down the same path. Much to my surprise, "In November, undercover Indian police in Mumbai were assigned to scan the catwalks at fashion shows in an effort to prevent a repeat of last year's episode in which an Indian model's top slipped to reveal her breasts. India censors banned Paris Hilton's music video "Stars Are Blind" from being shown on television in August, which shows the blond socialite cavorting on a beach in revealing clothes. India last year also tried to ban smoking scenes in films, reasoning that cigarette-wielding Bollywood stars were influencing people to take up the habit." The CEO of Sony's Indian division has been expressing concern that the censorship may spread to games and that these censorship rules are enforced and made randomly."

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It was pity stayed his hand. "Pity I don't have any more bullets," thought Frito. -- _Bored_of_the_Rings_, a Harvard Lampoon parody of Tolkein

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